When I was young I loved watching Little House on the Prairie, like many children of my era I suppose. Although I never could shake the feeling that I had to live on a farm and make my own soap like the Ingles family( I imagined) did. In the Eighties’ when I was out dancing in a nightclub, jingle jangling in my fake pearl strands that I would wrap around my wrists and my ankles- with my camisole over my clothes to look like Madonna… when asked what I wanted to do out of university, I often said, I want to live on a farm and make my own soap. This was always good for a laugh, and I would laugh too, but deep down I knew I was speaking the truth.
And now that I believe in manifesting your own destiny, I realize I did manifest my own soapy destiny. And although I didn’t marry a farmer, I did fall in love with a seafood harvester- a deep sea diver who has a love of gardening. We eventually moved to a small gulf island where we raised two beautiful daughters together. I took a soap making class in Victoria over twenty years ago and just plowed on from there. I started making soap to help make income on the side in a place where it is often difficult to find viable work. I took out books from the library and searched the web for new ideas. I have made lard soap and coconut oil soap. I have made soap with beer and soap made with green tea. I have made goat milk soap and soap made with hand-picked nettles and wild rose-infused water. I have been exhausted by raising a family, chopping kindling every day, keeping out the critters ( a part of living in the country), keeping out ants, spiders, mice, flies and deer, all the while creating and selling my soap. Many a night I have fallen down spent on my pillow, thinking, I cannot do one more thing, and then realize…SOAP IN THE FREEZER! I forgot my soap in the freezer! I always had soap in the freezer! And so I would jump up in my pajamas, bare feet in rubber boots… I would weave my way around my husband’s boat project to get to the heavy trays of soap that I put into the deep freeze to help pop them out of the molds. I carried them two at a time to my little workshop across the gravel driveway where I would push out the fragrant soap and leave them to cut in the morning. This happened so often, I almost can’t imagine a time that I didn’t fall asleep without this sad little ritual.
Now I consider myself a master-soapmaker. I have so much knowledge about soapmaking, so many recipes, and so many stories. These stories will be funny but some of them will be sad. It has been a long road, living on a little island, struggling to make ends meet while raising a happy family. Creating soap is a part of my life that I can no longer hold back and it is time to share all my secrets.
I have been thinking about creating this blog for a long time.
Now the timing seems right, so sit back, grab a cup of tea and tuck your sleeves into your rubber gloves.
It’s time to get soaping.
I hope you enjoy my blog.