Getting a soap making class from my aunt on Friday. I’m getting kind of excited about adding another skill as well as something that might work as a cottage business. My aunt is going to give us a class on making regular soap and a goat’s milk soap and I think she is getting excited about it too. The worst that can happen is I learn a new skill and hobby that will provide me with soap I like no matter what happens in the future.
My rain barrels will help with the soap making as the water should be soft compared to city or well water. It seems that the softer the water is the better the lye mixes and makes a better end product. While the wood I’m burning in the wood stove is a pine and not very good ashes for making soap. Going with fruit hard woods next year and the mesquite I use for charcoal should work very well to make in the future. I found instructions for making my own leeching barrel for lye and a different use for the ashes from the wood stove. I’ll be using the ash out behind my shop and the alley to kill off the Goatheads (puncture vine) and it will also add some traction for the driveway/alley in the winter.
So far the soap making and beeswax looks like a fairly small money investment of a couple of hundred dollars at most. Not all that much money compared to most hobbies and is very small when compared with most small businesses. Buying and selling local, being self-reliant and telling the government that I no longer need the disability payments would be priceless!
I brewed up a batch of wheat beer and I’m cooling the grains so my aunt can see if her chickens and goats like it as feed. The grains should be a bit like sweet feed that has some of the sugars extracted. The grain is crushed so it should be easy to digest but when I worked on the ranch as a kid I saw cattle get terrible bloat when overfed with grain. So while I doubt the chickens will have a problem this will be the first time using the grain to feed a larger animal. Good thing about goats is they have a very strong stomachs and can survive on stuff that other grazers can’t tolerate.
I have no idea if the soap and beeswax idea will work as a business, but I think it does have potential especially with my disability. I’m going to keep working on more things and researching ideas that I can physically accomplish and make me less dependent on the government. I don’t much care for being used as a bargaining chip while the PTBs play their little games. Funny how they never put their government checks on the line. It’s always the taxpayer, the disabled, the elderly and the poor that are threatened!