From all of us here, Merry Christmas!
I just got a hold of some gorgeous new glass pendants! Check them out.
Black & White Zebra Pendant
Glass Flower Teardrop Pendant
And I’ve got more to add to the website for sale! All pendants come with either a ribbon necklace or braided necklace so you can wear them right out of the box. Each necklace is only $12. Visit www.havelinasoap.com and get yours today!
French Green Clay Soap
About a week ago, a friend of Fernando’s posted some questions on his Facebook page about my soap. His question about the soap was: “She doesn’t use lye to make soap does she? I’m asking because lye is caustic acid/poison.”
This got me to thinking about how best to educate people in general about natural soap and how it’s created. While the person who posed the question was correct in stating that lye is caustic, he was incorrect in his assumption that lye in soap is bad. Lye is one of the three essential ingredients needed to make soap. The most basic equation for soap is:
Water + Lye + Fat (animal or vegetable) —> Saponification (chemical reaction) —> Soap (by product of the chemical reaction)
My general response to the question was: “When you mix water, lye and some sort of fat (vegetable or animal), it goes through a chemical process called saponification. Within about a week, the water and lye are “cured out” but you are left with a by product of the chemical reaction, which is soap. So, lye goes in, but does not come out.”
So for those of you out there wondering how the heck soap is made (even with a caustic ingredient), there is your quick and simple answer.
Funny enough, the guy never responded to my response. Hmph.
Last weekend I went crazy in my local herb store. My initial reason for buying herbs was to fill the lavender sachets I made for Raquel. Instead of just buying lavender, I came home with bags of other herbs. With them, I put together this insanely tasty tea blend.
What’s in it you ask?
Here it is put together.
Pretty huh? It’s nicely tart, with a light berry taste and I actually like it better cold than hot.
Most of these herbs are available at a herb or health food store. And of course, you can always order them online. For this particular blend, I just included about equal amounts of each herb. Try it yourself and see what you like best.
I think this week unintentionally became herb week for me. In addition to making tea blends and infused oils, I made some lavender sachets for my BFF Raquel. This is how they turned out.
This is my favorite one.
Hope she likes them.
Have you ever seen honey look like this?
Heres an even closer shot.
No, this honey is not cold, old or congealing. This is an herbal honey. Herbal honey is what you get when you when you steep herbs in honey for about a month. In these pictures, the blend is:
3/4 cup honey
1/8 cup each: powdered ginger, cinnamon, orange peel
and a touch of cloves
Let me tell you, it’s sooooo good that I keep eating it by the spoonful. What’s nice is that you can put this on toast, in tea, or anywhere where it calls for honey.
Here’s another herbal honey I made last night.
This recipe is called Happy Tummy and I got it from my herb teacher. I deviated from her original recipe a little but mine is: 1 cup of honey, 1 tbsp ground fennel and 1 tbsp coriander. This is another finger lickin’ good honey.
If you’ve got some extra honey and want to try this yourself, it’s super easy. Just add herbs, honey, mix and let steep for a month before you dig in. If you are interested in some of my recipes, let me know, or just look up herbal honey recipes online.
So dear friends, it’s finally time I let the St. John’s Wort infused oil go. I’ve let it sit far longer than I should have hoping beyond hope, I’d even get a light orange oil. No such luck.
After many months, I’m left with this. Very slightly infused oil. My heart is heavy as I say goodbye to my dreams of beautiful oil. But that’s okay, thanks to a late fall heat wave, I’ve got some gorgeous roses blooming in the garden. Guess what’s coming next?