Laundry Soap & Carrot Soup.

Over the past few days, I’ve been feeling rather … um, domestic. 

Things have been so busy with Gigi Photography lately and while that is FANTASTIC and wonderful, it also means less time for my family and my children. It’s been a constant journey trying to find a good balance between the two – family and my passion for my business. Of course, my children  and my family life ultimately come first. In fact, that’s WHY I started my photography business – so I could stay home with my beautiful children, nuturure them and spend those precious days together. 

And sometimes, I just need to SLOOOOOOOOOOOW down and simply enjoy my girls and my job as a mommy … the BEST job I could EVER have! I truly believe that. 

And sometimes, on those days, my domestic side just wants to have scream &  fun … so fun was had this week so far … 


The girls and I painted paper pumpkins to celebrate fall …




We played playdough and Little People. We danced. Sang. Played the piano.


We also made a little “Welcome Autumn” feast as a surprise for daddy.




One of my sweet friends dropped off some homemade bread (YUMMM!) …. so I saved it for our fun dinner …






 and here’s where it gets amazing … a miracle really. If any of you know me, you know I CAN NOT cook. I am a basic cook – meat and potatoes kinda gal. NOTHING fancy at all. But this week, yes, this week, a miracle happened ……….. amazingly enough, I made – from scratch – the most tastiest carrot butternut squash soup …. wow … I am still so proud!  And that’s okay, right?


I’m not bragging, just impressed and surprised. 

Okay, maybe a bit of bragging.

After all, I sauteed onions for the first time EVER.

I baked squash. Also a first. 

I stirred. Blended. Mixed. 

I created something yummy … yeeehawww!




You want the recipe? C’mon. YOu KNOW you do …. just imagine this scrumptious tasty soup on a cold, fall day … mmmm …. and if I can make it, YOU can most certainly make it.

Here it is!!!


Okay, one MORE thing …. today, I decided to make my own homemade laundry soap. Yeah, stop laughing ….! Seriously. “WHY?” you ask?


Well, I heard about it from someome at church earlier this week and was thinking how much money I could scrimp and save if I just made my own laundry soap. So Lacey & I skipped off to the grocery store today, purchased a Linda bar of soap, some Borax and some Arm & Hammer Super Washing Soda and created HOMEMADE laundry soap. 




It was SOOOO easy to make and it smells AMAZING!!!!!!! The “hardest” part was grating the block of soap! That’s it.




And I’m happy to announce it actually works! Yeahh! Apparently, it’s about $2 per batch of recipe which does 40 loads of little socks, jeans, shirts and blankies… not bad, eh? With my three kids, I do about 11-15 loads per week. Crazy. I anticipate saving lots of money! 😉 

If you’re feeling domesticated this week and want to make your own laundry soap – here’s the recipe – courtesy of the Duggar family! (I am dying to see this show – I have no t.v. service so I can’t watch it. Does anyone know if it’s out on DVD or anything? They sound fascinating!) 

Powdered Laundry Detergent- Top load machine

1   Fels-Naptha soap bar (note: I have no idea where to find this soap so I bought the Linda namebrand soap)
1  Cup – Arm & Hammer Super Washing Soda*   (I found this at No Frills here in Orangeville)
½  Cup Borax (can be found anywhere!)

-Grate soap or break into pieces and process in a food processor until powdered. Mix all ingredients. For light load, use 1 Tablespoon. For heavy or heavily soiled load, use 2 Tablespoons. Yields: 3 Cups detergent. (Approx. 40 loads)


Our next domestic project was/is repainting Lacey’s room … it was just a slight pink – it’s now Pinkalicious … ! Can’t wait to set it up for her tomorrow!


Happy Laundering, you Domestic Goddess, you!! 😀

September 24, 2009 - 10:23 pm

Melissa Yes it is available on DVD… the first season was 17 kids and counting.. you can buy it on Amazon

September 24, 2009 - 8:15 pm

Melissa C The soap sounds like a great idea…I wonder if will work in a high efficiency washer?

September 24, 2009 - 2:59 pm

Sherri ha Ha….I just finished watching the latest episode of the Duggars’ on my pvr this aft! They have a really great book out…I found it at our public library….I think the soap recipe was in it along with a bunch of other Dugger favorites. Oh, and Michelle is apparently preggers with #19!!!!

September 24, 2009 - 1:26 pm

Sherri Smith Sounds like a perfect week. If you want to see some videos of the Duggar family you can find them on the discovery health website:

September 24, 2009 - 8:01 am

Mom Gillian, this is amazing!! You are inspiring ALL of us!! The soup looks sooooo yummy!! I am going to make it too! And the soap is probably the best for your family, money wise and also it wouldn’t have any fillers, like the store soaps have! Was Abby surprised? You are certainly an amazing inspiring woman! xo

September 24, 2009 - 7:51 am

Amber Thank you for the home making inspirations!!! Beautiful photos as always! Fall really brings that side out in me, even before my children. I can’t wait to try out the soap!!! My husband will be thrilled to save! Oh, and the soup too, looks so yummy.

September 24, 2009 - 5:38 am

Vanda The laundry soap recipe sounds interesting. I think I’ll try that. Do you use the cold water cycle has well?

I love the table setting. I love the chairs too.
Congrats on the soup. It looks tasty. How about the recipe for the bread too. It looked yummy.

Have a great day!

September 23, 2009 - 11:45 pm

–cherry. Oh.My.Word. you go girl !! — love your domestic-diva-ness shining through!! i am seriously gonna try both your recipes this weekend. wish me luck, i’ll need it 😉 .

September 23, 2009 - 11:07 pm

Tracy I found a similar recipe for laundry soap on David Suzuki’s site, been using it for a year now and it works great! I use a bar of Sunlight laundry soap as my soap, was the easiest one to find in my area.