Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Soapnuts Review!

I led a group Buy for Soapnuts once somewhere around last month and have started using them one week after I got them for laundry. I never seem to find the time to blog about it or to share the experience of using soapnuts till now. All I can say is that I am mighty glad that I actually got myself 1kg of soapnuts! 


Because they work like a charm! Okay, so at first glance, they looked like nuts, sticky nuts. 
Opened the bag and "OMG!" the smell is... well, it has a pungent smell to it, but it isn't a smell that will make you not want to use it.
I placed 5 nuts in an old sock. I found a pantyhose-like sock and used that. I tied a knot and soaked it in hot water for 5 minutes just to soften the nuts up. I noticed some bubbles forming as I was pouring hot water into the bowl with the nut filled old sock. 
I started the washing machine and placed the old sock into the machine. When the machine stopped, I checked Chago's napkins and cloth diapers.... No traces of the sourish soapnut smell. The laundry was clean, napkins looking white and cloth diapers did not smell of urine or soapnuts. It smelt like detergent actually... I wasn't sure why, it could be because there might be some detergent residue left behind from the other previous washing. 

I used these 5 nuts in that old sock for about 4 laundry cycle. And then removed them from the sock. I used about 3 rounds of soapnuts, so that means, I have about 15 used shells. I soaked them in hot water last night, and saw that they were still producing some bubbles. 

So this morning, here's what I did:

I removed the used soapnuts that was soaking from the night before. As you can see from the pictures above, it still looked puffy, and the inside of the nut (when I pinched the skin of the nut open) you can see a yellow layer, which, I think, still contains soap. I squeezed whatever I could from the nuts and put them aside.

The water in the bowl was yellowish. There were no smell of sour soapnuts. When I dipped my fingers in it, it did not feel soapy but when I rubbed my fingers together, there was a little itty bitty bit of soapy feeling. 

Ready for action! I did an experiment. First with my dirty dishes from Breakfast this morning. I was amazed! I did not need to use so much. All I did was dipped in the scrub cloth in, slightly squeeze it and scrub the plates and the cups like I normally would with any other detergent. Rinsed them all and I found myself surprised at how effective it was at removing dirt and grease! So I did another test, this time on a wok.

Before: Oily and greasy. I had Maggi Goreng for breakfast! So that's what it looked like before soapnut action.
After: With just one dip into the bowl of soaked soapnuts, this is what I got! A grease free wok! I rubbed my finger on it, it went "squeak squeak squeak!" Oh what Joy!

Now, we all know how greasy the back part of the wok can be. I used soapnut water and look! I really could not believe it. Miguel was as surprised as I was when I showed him. He said..

"It feels cleaner than washing with the dish wash detergent!"

I took the soapnuts that I placed aside and soak and squeezed more soap out of it.

And then I place them all in a pot (it may look like there were more than 15 in there because the nuts came apart when washing in the washing machine), filled them up with water and left it to boil. It's cooling down now. Let's see what we find later :)

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Good Morning all!!!

As Promised, I will be announcing the winners for the 1st RTP Giveaway!!!

The Winners are as follows:

TWO Lucky Winners for RTP @ Chago Mago's Denim Giveaway:
1. Anne Chan
2. Joanne Michelle Lee

Winner For White Fleece Shell:
1. Nuyul Mohsan
Congratulations to the Winners! I will be contacting you guys via fb soon to get more details on the gender of your little ones for Denim winners, and mailing details for all winners!

For those who did not win anything, a very BIG THANK YOU for being a sport and showing some love here at RTP.The Winning Entries:

By Anne Chan - 73 wordswhy Eugene deserves to win Chago Mago's Denim Cloth Diaper because his mummy is in jeans and sports shoe ALL the time. Coz my mummy has to look after my two elder sisters who's always running in the shopping mall, and me, trying to stand up in my stroller. Therefore, Chago Mago's Denim Cloth Diaper would be perfect coz then our colours won't clash and will ALWAYS coordiate :)  i'll be COOL like mummy!

 By Joanne Michelle Lee - 93 words
"Why I think Laurent deserves to win Chago Mago's Denim Cloth Diaper more than anybody else is because I have yet to purchase one from you, but never had the chance since I fell in love with your WFC. Winning this Denim Cover would put a smile on my face since I now have a 5 collection of Chago Mago's Cloth Diapers. If I win the Denim Cover, not only will it look posh and expensive, yet it would be fun to use on its own with tees, specifically for outdoor family outings".

By Nuyul Mohsan - I deserve the White Fleece Shell because..... my child worthy of the best (comfort) and i can rest assured from leakage at night. 

For those who participated but did not win anything, A VERY BIG THANKS FOR PARTICIPATING! 

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

DIY Baby Safe Paint and Messy Messy Day!

I have been thinking about this for the past couple of days. Looking at Chago sit on his bed building blocks with his papa, but his papa was hogging the blocks. So I got Chago to the kitchen, let him go walking round and round while I prepare his baby paint :)

Recipe for a Baby Safe Paint:

Cold water
Safe Food Colouring (don't get the cheap ones - look at ingredients)
Hot water 

1. Pour some flour into a bowl
2. Add cold water (not too much)
3. Mix the flour and water to create a paste
4. Add your desired colouring
5. Mix and add hot water to adjust the consistency of the paste (to dilute it a little) 

Do that for other desired colours and you'll have one laughing baby messing up the kitchen floor.

Change clothes to darker colours or remove clothes!
I forgot to do so but i don't really care since those were just home clothes :)

Till we paint next :)

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

PUL and other Cloth Diaper Fabrics for Sale

I have been getting way too many orders that I sometimes get really tired. I have met a few people who have actually wanted me to teach them to sew their own cds so that they could save on reusing instead of disposing. I'm all in for supporting the need to care for mother nature. So I guess sharing is caring :) For those of you who have been inquiring on fabrics and have always wanted to sew your own...

Just click on any of the above links "Buy PUL" "Stay Dry Fabrics" "Fleece" and "Coming Soon" to see what's available, how much is it and what you can use them for.

Till I sew next :)

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Santiago's 1st Circus Carnival Birthday Themed Party!!

I was so excited about this that I had started planning this ahead and for quite some time now. My very first Party Planning Project for Chago... A Circus Carnival Themed Party!

I took one week off to prepare this very last minute party. Well, the idea and concept of it was not last minute, but the whole DIY thing was! Everything was handmade and prepared from home! Everything except The Birthday Cake and the "Pin the Clown" Pin up game. 

Now, I said ONE WEEK, but it was actually 4 days, including the day of the party! 
I had 3 days taken away from me because I had some issues with getting to the post office in time and having my other errands done - I.e. Send and pick up Hubby from airport, send soapnuts, orders, pick up fabrics from customs department etc... All these left me with just 3 days of crazy sleepless nights, a demanding baby, and everyone was "Michelle this, and Michelle that" on what's going to happen on the birthday. I was a walking zombie! I could just sink my teeth in to human flesh anytime if they pushed the right buttons :)

But all that hard work paid off. With a very loving and supportive husband, good showmanship from my brother, good sporting nature from my dad and sisters and not forgetting the Birthday lady - my mum, whose birthday falls 2 days after Chago's, everyone who came had fun! I have never felt so happy to see everyone enjoying themselves!

I made this very simple Birthday Suit for Chago. He's meant to be the Little Canon boy while his dad is the Canon Man.

Designed this and printed them out individually, string them up and tada! The cutting and the stringing part took me forever. And making sure they hold up straight was another thing.

Miguel blew all the 70 balloons we had. I think about 30 of them popped just before the party started. No more cheap balloons for sure!

Got some of Chago's Monkeys to help out as well. This Gorilla was in charge of the Jelly beans Basket

A short pictorial story of Chago's adventure from the time he was born right up to that very day :)

Plastic drinking sippy cups for the kids to hold on to throughout the whole night

Door Gift bags with the kids' names on them. They come with 10 game tickets each, a Face Painting coupon and a Popcorn redemption Voucher. You can't play games without a ticket!

The Elephant Parade! join the stampede for some cuppies!

A big Thank You to my sister for helping me bake these. Yumminess!

Red Eggs - A tradition in the Chinese Community. I seriously do not know what it symbolizes nor do I care, but since my family are mostly Chinese, mum thought it would be good to just do it. Well, It definitely looks nice in a nest with a snake in it :)

My Popcorn stand - Chago's Circus Monkey are guarding them. One of them is sleeping on the job...

One of the Carnival activities :) Present a ticket for fortune telling!

Try your luck at toss the ball! One ticket only!

Or Pin The Clown!

How Cool is that :) Having your own dad dressing up in this ridiculous Clown suit that I made! Thanks dad for putting this on :D


And to my canon boys :)

Loving them for being a sport!

This is the most popular booth! I had some kids begging me for more tickets!!!

My mum was supposed to be in charge of Face Painting BUT she was still stucked in the kitchen so I had to fill in... And my my, what HORROR!

I stuck to Kitty cats since they were simpler to do :)

But the canon boy can't have a kitty cat face :s

Okay... This was over exaggerated!

Err.... Niiiiiiiiiice kitty....
She didn't look too happy here, LOL!

The Birthday Cake. I should've done less wordings or at least a round cake.

All in all, everyone had a blast! I had a blast! It was so much fun, especially with the games and the Pinata. And everyone loved the food. I would remember this day for the rest of my life :)
sigh... (happily)
And I do hope very much that Santiago can remember bits and pieces of it.
Because I actually did remember some bits of my first birthday.

Thanking everyone who came as well to make it as wonderful for us as it had been for them :)

Till I sew next :)