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10.22.2014

This is Me Throwing Out the Rules

I've had a lot on my mind lately. With a huge increase in my freelancing, I've wondered what's next for me, my writing, and this blog. I've reached out to those I trust, gotten a lot of feedback from a lot of people, and I've known for awhile it's time to move in a slightly different direction. 

10.16.2014

What I'm Reading Now: The Feast Nearby


(This post includes affiliate links. Thanks for helping me support my family!)

I should not be allowed near locavore memoirs. They're like crack to me. Every time I read about some intrepid soul living simply off the land, I get the insatiable itch to buy some land, add some chickens, and dig a huge garden. My family thinks I'm a little nuts. They're probably right.


10.13.2014

Moderation, Skepticism, and Common Sense: The Three Vanishing Virtues

Truth time- when I started this blog, I put roughly two seconds of thought into the title. I knew that I wanted this blog to stand apart from the eco-friendly blogs I was following. In case you haven't noticed, this is not a blog for off-grid hippies munching on oat grout chased with kombucha. This is for the mom in the minivan who just wants her kids to eat a few more vegetables. It turns out, two years later, that the term Moderately Crunch really does embody everything I want for this blog. Chalk one up to serendipitous luck.

10.09.2014

The One Financial Tip That Could Save Your Marriage


When we were newly married, the hubs and I had some minor disagreements about money. We were broke. Scratch that- we were looking up at broke. It didn't help that we came from very different socioeconomic statuses with opposing priorities on where the little we had should go. A wise mentor suggested we give ourselves some mad money each month, with the provision that we could not pass judgement on how the other spent his or her money. Crazy man say what!? How were we supposed to solve our lack of money problems by spending even more money? Huh?

10.07.2014

Quick Tip Tuesday: Infused Water


(This post uses affiliate links. Thanks for helping me support my family!)

I had a water bottle crush. At a local sporting goods store, I watched the video for a new infuser water bottle over and over and over, but I just couldn't take the plunge and buy the thing. For one, it was $25 bucks, and I already own quite a few perfectly good water bottles. Secondly, it was made of plastic, and like I talked about a few weeks ago, I prefer glass water bottles (yes, even for the kiddos. Read this post to see how we manage).


10.06.2014

The Elusive Middle Ground Between Fat Shaming and Total Acceptance

I was reading the online edition of the New York Times, when I came across an interesting Op Talk article by Anna North (read it here). Fat shaming has received a lot of recent media attention, and for very good reason. Bullying of all flavors and varieties needs to stop. Our fat-phobic ways are nothing less than deplorable, especially when you consider the extenuating circumstances that lead to obesity. Combine that with our obsession with paper-thin, photo-shopped magazine spreads, and you've created the perfect social media storm. It's an untenable situation we find ourselves in. Lately, more and more high-profile individuals have spoken out against fat shaming in all it's insidious varieties, and I must admit I'm slightly obsessed with Meghan Trainor's song All About That Bass. But...

10.02.2014

72 Hour Kit Instructions and Printables



Around this time each October, we update our 72-hour emergency survival kit, which I've made some changes to since my initial post (which you can read here). We also got our first snow of the season today, which reinforced how much I need to get on top of things.

9.29.2014

How to Buy Used Clothes- Without Looking Frumpy


I'm finally not pregnant anymore! Can we shout that from the rooftops for a second? However, I realized that, out of the last six years, I've spent five of them pregnant, nursing, or trying to get pregnant. It also means I haven't bought many clothes in the past six years. What's the point of buying clothes when your weight goes up and down 30 pounds every year? Now is the time to buy clothes!

9.25.2014

Help! My Cloth Diapers Reek of Ammonia


I'm usually pretty good about maintaining our cloth diaper stash. Then I was miserably pregnant. Then I had a baby. Then I realized that my 6 week diaper stripping routine had flown out the window, and my diapers reeked of ammonia. Ugh! Ammonia is all the bane of all cloth diapering families. It's difficult to remove, causes painful rashes, and stinks to high heaven. Rest assured, though- you can get your diapers back to brand new, even after a run in with ammonia.

9.22.2014

Yet Another Laundry Soap Recipe


In case you missed this post, we have some allergy drama around our house. At the urging of our allergist, we switched from our homemade liquid laundry detergent to All Free and Clear, which I hate!!!! Seriously people. I'm pretty sure plain tap water would be more effective than the All. So, we used up the stuff we bought and went back to making our own. After all, our version is free of all additives, dyes, and fragrances. Why not?

But... After bringing Mrs. Meyers counter top spray into our house (read my review here), the hubby got a taste for cleaning supplies that smell good. He asked if we could find a compromise homemade laundry soap that smelled good. I wasn't willing to use the amount of essential oils it would take to use in every load of laundry. I love them, but they're a little pricey. That's when I started the research. Lots and lots of research.

What you need to know...

All homemade laundry detergent recipes are variations of the same ingredients- borax, washing soda, baking soda, oxygen bleach, fels naptha bars, and scent crystals. Everyone has a good reason for using the ingredients and proportions they choose, but I'm here to tell you it really doesn't matter that much. We played with this recipe for months and didn't see much difference.


If you want to make your own powdered laundry soap, I give you permission to play around with the recipe (as if my permission meant diddly squat). You really can't screw this up too much. Here's what we ended up using, mostly because I had all the ingredients readily available.

Powdered Laundry Soap
2 cups Borax
2 cups Washing Soda
2 cups Sun oxygen bleach
1 bar Fels Naptha, grated
1 cup Purex Crystals for Baby (hypoallergenic and dye-free)


Mix all ingredients in a large mixing bowl. Store in a air-tight container. Use 2 heaping tablespoons per load. 


A few notes*
- This will not suds up and get all bubbly. We've been trained to think that bubbles=clean, but they're usually the result of chemicals. Don't worry about the lack of suds; this stuff gets the job done.
- We use Sun Oxygen Bleach instead of Oxiclean because it contains less additives. Sun is pure oxygen bleach and Oxiclean is half oxygen bleach and half detergent. Sun is also cheaper.
- To grate Fels Naptha easily, run your cheese grater under hot water for 1 minute, dry thoroughly, then grate the soap using a small grating pattern.
- The Purex crystals are completely OPTIONAL. This is what makes it smell good, but also makes it less "crunchy". It's the compromise part of this recipe for my family.

For even more tutorials, follow the Moderately Crunchy Blog Tutorials board on Pinterest. 

You might also like:
DIY Laundry Solutions
Create Your Own Green Cleaners