Friday, October 09, 2009

Soap Bars

The soap block has been cut into bars and they're ready to go upstairs to make my studio smell good. I tried letting it cure in the garage, but the mice nibbled on them. Disgusting.

Some of your commented on lye so I wanted to explain that lye is what makes fat become hard soap. It's a reaction that occurs between sodium hydroxide and fats called saponification and far too complex for me to understand other than it makes soap and that's good enough for me.

I thought you might like to see what October looks like in the high desert.

We live on Fetlock Drive, and the irony of a dirt road with a sign calling it a drive is not lost on me.

I had to live here for a long time, then move and way and move back, before I learned to appreciate and love this strange beauty.

The last blooming rabbit brush in our yard. I'm off to make one last batch of soap.


bspinner said...

tIf your soap smells as good as it looks I can understand why the mice would like it. Last winter a mouse made his way into the bathroom and we found out when we heard the soap drop into the bath tub in the middle of the night.

Pictures of your area are so different from what I'm used to. So much beauty in a different way.

Laura said...

Ok, the chemistry geek has to comment... The reaction between the lye (a base) and the soap (a fatty acid) is very much like mixing baking soda and vinegar, except the salt that you get makes suds and you can use it. I wish we had made soap in O-chem, instead of purifying aspirin crystals or identifying unknowns - it's way more interesting and illustrates the reaction way better.

Ok, the geek is going away...

Sharon said...

It's all geek to me :)

vlb5757 said...

I love the soap. It looks like cream cheese brownies. The swirl is great and makes my hungry. Okay, I gotta go eat dinner...r

Life Looms Large said...

The rabbit brush is really a dry, dusty, desserty sort of way.

Having just traveled in Utah, I appreciate your part of the country more. It really is quite different from humid, chilly NH!!

The soap really does look good enough to eat!


Theresa said...

I was thinking brownies too when I looked at it, I guess the mice where too. What I didn't understand was that the saponification where the molecule of lye attaches to the fat, changes the lye so that it is no longer lye. I was always wondering why lye was never listed as an ingredient in soap. We have rabbit brush here too or a close cousin.

Leigh said...

The mice nibbled on them?!? How weird is that. They do look good enough to eat. *LOL