Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Failures & Successes

Failures and Successes, today has been full of both of them. We did make the soap. We rendered the cattle fat into tallow and used it, along with olive oil, to make an oatmeal, honey, and cinnamon soap. Today I was able to take it out of the molds. Taste tests to test the ph balance proved the lye was too strong, so the soap is a failure. But really, it isn't. We can use it for laundry detergent, so we will still be saving ourselves a lot of money and it is still a step towards greater self-sufficeincy. And, most importantly, this was our first batch of soap, so it was a good learning experience, and we did learn from it.
And the successes? Shannon has been the epitome of them today, though Tristan is quickly trying to follow along as well. Justin found a "cloth" bag under the couch that a pop-up Thomas the Train tent had come in. Shannon has taken to carrying around his trains in, and then hanging the bag on door-knobs ... just like I hang our cloth grocery bags on some cabinet knobs in the kitchen. They are both pretty taken with recycling, but Shannon is of course much more aware of it. He gets very upset when he sees litter and he runs to pick it up so that "Mother Earth will feel better." He points it out when he sees it and can't get to it and says how it makes Mother Earth feel bad. It's really quite sweet.
Maybe there really haven't been any failures today, just varying degrees of successes. Success as a parent, as a person, as an enviromentalist, as a teacher, as a homemaker, as a homesteader. That's good enough for me.

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