She watches over the affairs of her household and does not eat the bread of idleness. (Proverbs 31:27)
Our area was hit with a huge snowstorm yesterday, so this weekend the Thorpe family has been enjoying quality time together inside our cozy home. We’ve had a ball making Christmas crafts, playing boards games, and romping in the snow.
Those activities are enjoyable, but when bad weather hits, one of my favorite things to do is cook. This weekend, I’ve made two delicious big breakfasts using my new waffle maker, prepared a fabulously filling bean soup, and I am planning to bake Christmas cookies and cupcakes with the girlies this afternoon.
Though cooking is one of my favorite activities, washing dishes is not. So as not to risk dishpan hands, I loaded up the dishwasher. Once the dishes were in, I reached under the sink to grab the dishwasher detergent and discovered we had none.
The lack of detergent irked me for three reasons. First, I found myself unprepared. I pride myself on maintaining a well stocked pantry and I have no idea how I slipped up and let the dishwasher detergent get so low! Next, since there is at least a foot and a half of snow outside, no one will be making a trip to the grocery store today. Finally, I wasn’t looking forward to washing that many dishes by hand.
Thankfully, the recollection of a conversation I’d had a few months ago saved me time. While at our homeschool cooperative, another mom and I were conversing about the joys of homemade laundry detergent. (Check out the recipe I use here.) During our chat, she explained that homemade dishwasher detergent works well and she shared the recipe she uses. I scribbled it down on a piece of paper and stuck it in a drawer once I got home.
Earlier today, I retrieved the scribbled note and made my own detergent. Since the recipe includes some of the same ingredients as the laundry detergent, I was able to locate most of the ingredients in my pantry and laundry room. According to this mom, the salt acts as a scrubber while the citric acid or lemonade mix works to add shine to the dishes. She also recommends adding vinegar to the rinse compartment to at least 1 cup of vinegar in order to combat any haze, buildup, film, or water spots that may be left on the dishes.
I’m now a fan of homemade dishwasher detergent! It worked well and costs much less than the Cascade detergent I used to love!
Powdered Dishwasher Detergent
1 cup Borax (20 Mule Team)
1 cup washing soda (Arm and Hammer Super Washing Soda)
1/2 cup Kosher salt
1/4 cup citric acid or 4 packages unsweetened Lemon Kool Aid
Use 2 tablespoons per load.
Photo: Courtesy of justmakeit (Flickr)