Traditionally the month of January is devoted to detoxing – how many people have had a dry month in some format?. A few more days until the end of January to reflect to think about what did not work last year, what did go right – either as a result of meticulous planning or sheer accident and what can we do differently for a more successful, happy and healthy year ahead.
I have been directing these questions to my soapy journey now that I have moved on from the honeymoon period. At the beginning I scoured the internet for information, attended courses, read soapy magazines and washed a lot in 2017, all in the name of research.
Pinterest has been a great companion in the early hours of the morning when I could not sleep, admiring the many colour and texture combinations of soap makers large and small around the world.
So I know what I need to do this year – this means trying some different techniques. I have perfected my trace and have only had 1 seized batch in 18 months, I panicked and threw the soap away in a temper, now I would have the confidence to rebatch it. I have always lusted after some simple swirls and experimenting with colours, so as a little self development exercise and to achieve this goal I will book myself on another soap course – there is always something new to learn and a good way to network with people with a similar interests.
Faith In Nature
Looking ahead I also want to experiment and have faith in using natural colours, maybe some nettle and paprika, I will have to raid the kitchen cupboards for inspiration.
Chemical Chain Reaction
The process of soap making and the chemical chain reaction has taught me a lot about myself – planning, getting the right ingredients in the right order at the right time, dealing with the occasional slip up and making the best of a situation when things go wrong – all can be applied to every day life.
I am at my happiest when I cut the soap and lay it out to cure as I can admire it for a further 6 weeks before it is packed up to be sold. When somebody buys a bar of my soap and I get compliments I still do a little happy jig inside so when I have a bad day over the next 11 months I will reflect on my Dry January and think positive thoughts.
I have just made my last batch of handmade luxury soap so I have a clean ending to 2017. Good old fashioned water(tap, bottled, stream etc.) and a little resist in the form of a flannel, loofah, or a leaf will get you clean but we are a nation of people that like to add a little luxury & fragrance to our daily rituals with the use of soap.
Over the years we have not always been so keen on washing and liked to wallow in our natural odour. Elizabeth 1 had a bath once a year “whether she needed to or no” and I am sure there are still folk today who agree with that sentiment.
Over the festive period many people will have received numerous hygiene related products, soaps, bath bombs, massage bars, bubble baths, shower gels etc., in a variety of fragrances and textures but not always natural.
“Hygiene” derives from the Greek goddess of health – Hygeia. The Greeks understood hygiene as a form of “longevity knowledge” which we can all incorporate in to our everyday lives and add to the process with some handmade soap.
So tonight I shall be seeing in the new year with an evening of luxury and I shall have a bath especially for the occasion. The only stressful part will be deciding which bar of beautifully fragrant soap to have as my companion.
All of the essential oils used in our soap range have therapeutic benefits but the winner this evening will be ….Neroli & Orange. The fragrance of this exotic sweet smelling, uplifting citrus delight will produce a rich white lather and leave the skin feeling soft and clean heading to the new year.
At the beginning of this year I said I would be super organised and have all my pyrography Christmas gift range finished by the end of September. It is now the middle of November and the wooden pyrography clocks are not ticking as they are still a work in progress.
I have a little secret…I like to spend five minutes at the end of the day browsing Pinterest but the browsing has not turned into production hence I have a lot of wood in cupboards and not completed gifts.
At this time of the year our thoughts turn to finding the perfect gift for a relative, friend or loved one. There is also the last minute search for the easy to wrap gift for the dreaded secret Santa endured at many a workplace.
Years ago wherever you looked you could have a glance at a clock on a wall as we all did our own personnel impression of the White Rabbit….running and saying ‘I’m late, ‘I’m Late.
So where have all the clocks gone?
With the increasing use of technology in our every day lives we use the clocks on our phones, computers, TV’s cooker etc. and the traditional wall clock has become less of a design feature in our homes.
So I plan to finish my clock in time for Christmas, the template has been cut and the piece of locally sourced oak wood sliced and dried and I just need to pyrography the face.
I have 42 days until Christmas Eve – surely I can find some free time between now and then?