Hi, folks! My name is Autumn, and I'm blogging today with The Life of a Compulsive Crafter, but you can normally find me atCottington's So Crafty. Mae invited me to talk about conscious living, and I specifically chose to discuss how I make my deodorant.
Firstly, though, at home, we do try to live consciously in terms of a few things - bits and pieces like NOT using paper towels (we use what I call "rags" - towels....that don't look so hot anymoe, LOL), composting (which is great, as it means about 1.5 bags of trash are filled each week...and I say that, but we seem to usually have only one bag to put out on Wednesdays), and our daughter mostly uses "family" cloth for when she uses the bathroom. I'd like to move to family cloth for the wet stuff - though not the scary stuff, aha!
A couple of other things we do: We try to buy as locally as we can and organically as we can. I prefer to shop at smaller stores - and in Bend, OR, it's nice, as nothing is too far away by bike. I have a Nature's and a Natural Grocers within a mile of me, and Whole Foods is just under three miles away. Some peeps out there might say it's better to go with farms and such - farmer's markets, etc. We are sometimes able to do that, as we've before supported a local farm (up in WA) by buying our eggs, honey, chickens and turkeys from them. We also purchased a 1/4 share of beef from my husband's aunt last spring, and that has lasted us until about now for a family of three. We have a couple items left in the freezer. Another shopping-related bit: I'm quite the nazi when it comes to not taking bags at the grocery store. I try my best to remember our cloth bags, but I sometimes forget, and even then, I try my hardest to carry a bazillion items out of the store in my arms, though I DO receive many stares, LOL!
And speaking of biking, since moving to Bend, we have wanted to save money in terms of vehicle insurance. My car is better in terms of gas mileage, so, we took insurance off my husband's truck, and he uses the car for work every day (he sadly works 30 minutes outside of town, so, whenever he gets a chance to work in town, I'm not-so-secretly happy - saves time and money! SCORE in my book!). Camden, my daughter, and I enjoy biking, rather than driving, to most places we go. We bike a good five days a week, if not six or seven, whether it's a total of 2 miles round trip or a total of 10 miles round trip. I find it's such a good use of time, as it kills a bit of time in a long day of being home alone with my daughter, and I feel so good doing it. By the way, she LOVES being in the trailer!
Lastly, before I blather on toooooo long, a small thing, really: We drink mostly water in our house. I've found that when my daughter is sick, I try to up our vitamin C in terms of citrus, including quality orange juice, and we do enjoy cider and egg nog at the holidays, but we drink a lot of water, and I really try to impress upon Camden that to be healthy, she needs to be well-hdyrated. Also, we do use mason jars for storing nuts and seeds - and taking frozen berries on outings for Camden. We do still have plastic in our house, of course, in terms of mixing bowls, but gosh - I can't remember the last time I purposely bought plastic for storage (UNLESS you count freezer bags, in which to store wool - yarn and projects - as we have had to deal with carpet beetles, which will eat ANYTHING, sadly). And aha! My husband just reminded me that he cuts his own hair ;) I certainly do NOT cut my hair, though....frightening results would ensue.
Whew! So, as for the deodorant, this is thankfully short and sweet! I found that I really hate using "evil" deodorants. So, a few years ago, I tried one after another that were supposedly not so bad. Everything from less expensive to pretty spendy - the Dr. Hauschka stuff, which actually worked okay. For the most part, though, I had a friend who would tell me time after time that NOTHING worked...and it was worse when I was pregnant with Camden (sadly, my body odor is stronger again THIS pregnancy). I tried doing an at-home vinegar sort of thing, and that seemed sometimes...sometimes not.
Then last winter/spring, I finally found a great recipe on Amy's blog, Angry Chicken. I've only changed up a few things. I try to double the recipe, and whether or not I do, I substitute arrow root powder for cornstarch, and I usually use more vitamin E, just for fun. When I made it a couple weeks ago, I DID add a little coconut oil, and I think the consistency is awesome, having done that! Without it, I find my deodorant is a bit harder, which is fine, but it's nice that it heats up/softens a bit faster when using the coconut oil - though I would NOT recommend adding too much. I will say the fine tuning comes in using essential oils that work for your body time - that might need some experimenting. I added peppermint this time, and I'm glad I did that, though I will say again that, because I'm pregnant, my body is proving to be stronger than deodorant, LOL. Anyway, making it is super simple, and I buy my ingredients at Mountain Rose Herbs, for the most part - buying some at Whole Foods (or wherever) if MRH is out of something. I definitely suggest buying cocoa butter CHIPS, rather than just a tub of cocoa butter, as that stuff is HARD to scoop. Anyway, I follow Amy's recipe, and here are some pictures from me. Storing overnight in the fridge when first making it is a good idea, but otherwise, it sits in my bathroom (in a glass jar), along with a spoon, for my scooping ease.
Thanks so much for reading, and let me know if you have any questions!