Since there was no way our soap ration was going to cover the amount of dish and laundry soap we use, I needed to find another solution. Luckily, unlike housewives during WW2, I have the internet to fall back on (although they had loads of cool government-issued how-to pamphlets.)
I found the following recipes, carefully totaled up our 12 monthly soap coupons (2 for 6 oz of shampoo each for daughter and me; 3 bars of soap for bath, sink, and kitchen; 3 coupons for 18oz (2 cups plus 4 TBSP) of Borax, 1 bar of soap for dishes, 2 bars for laundry; and one coupon left over for emergencies) and got to work.
First up: Homemade Laundry Soap. (There are comprehensive pictures at the link, so I'll only post a few.)
1 bar of Ivory soap, grated
1 cup Borax
1 cup Washing soda
Mix together, breaking up clumps with your fingers.
(This is two batches of laundry soap, which is our ration for the month.)Store in a closed jar.
Measure out 1 TBSP for a load of laundry (Warm water makes it dissolve better.) Easy-peasy.
Now for the Homemade Dish Soap.
1 TBSP grated Ivory soap
1 3/4 cups water.
Bring the water to a boil in a sauce pan. Add the other ingredients, whisking to melt the soap.
Of course, if you're like me, you won't get the directions quite right when you're mixing everything up, since the instructions will be on the computer on the dining room table, while you're busy in the kitchen measuring soap, etc, and will combine everything and bring it all to a boil, which as it cools will become a lovely gelatinous mass, too thick to pour into or out of a bottle. (How's that for a run-on sentence!)
(Thank goodness I decided to start with the basic recipe, instead of quadrupling it to get it all done at once, which was my first inclination. I'm a bit on the lazy side. Don't judge me.)
I tried adding a smidge more water and whisking gently. It's a bit foamy/lumpy in this picture. Good enough for government work.
Will the laundry soap actually clean clothes? Will the dish soap chunks actually be able to fit through the bottle spout? And what about Naomi? For the answers to these and other questions, tune in for my next soap post...whenever my chunky dish soap runs out.