Suburban Pioneers

The Adventures and Misadventures of Homesteading in 21st-Century America

Lauren: Yogurt and Homemade Deodorant May 7, 2013

I feel as if I should confess a couple of my most recent misadventures: yogurt and homemade deodorant. I was really excited about both endeavors, but alas, my enthusiasm wasn’t enough.

Endeavor #1

I bought a half gallon of whole milk and followed all the directions for Crock Pot Yogurt. I was excited to use milk of my choosing, to save money, and to have live active cultures (it’s questionable whether there are any live cultures in store-bought yogurt; by the time they get shipped to the store, end up on the shelf, and then eventually sit in your refrigerator, they most likely aren’t “live” anymore) . I even put my homemade yogurt in the fridge at three in the morning because that was the time it was finished sitting out. It seemed to slosh a little more in the pot that I thought it ought to, but I was also half asleep. But no, it turns out my observations at o’dark thirty are pretty accurate. In the morning, I saw that it resembled milk more than it did yogurt. The flavor was okay; it’s not really a taste problem so much as a consistency problem. All was not lost, though; we’ve been using it as a replacement for milk over our granola cereal.

Endeavor #2

Dave and I both started using the homemade deodorant I made from coconut oil, baking soda, and essential oil. He sweats like a typical guy and I thought that the homemade version might work better for him than the commercial products. He would really slather on the latter in an attempt to help it last all day, but still, his white undershirts would end up not so white. (Side note: What’s the deal with white undershirts? They end up stained in about six months. What a good marketing job Hanes, Fruit of the Loom, and Calvin Klein have done! But the white undershirts and I are done. We have broken up and I will no longer be buying them! If anything, I might start a relationship with dark blue ones or black.) Anyway, we even wore our natural deodorant on a hike in 85 degree weather and it fared okay. But yesterday, when it was 92 degrees, I opened the deodorant bottle and dumped (poured) the entire contents all over myself and my shoe (if my room had been clean, it would not have ended up in my shoe, but it’s enough work to keep the rest of the house looking decent). In high temperatures, coconut oil turns into a liquid, which I knew but didn’t think about as I was opening the deodorant bottle. And now that my clothes and my shoes smell citrusy, I vaguely remember the directions saying something about keeping the homemade deodorant in the fridge. I also have a problem with my brain being selective about what it decides to remember. . . and when.

I am not done yet. I vow to continue my quest for homemade yogurt and deodorant.  (Updates to follow.)



I have successfully made homemade yogurt! I found a slightly more involved recipe that requires taking the yogurt’s temperature every so often. It comes out perfectly. My favorite thing about the yogurt is that my three year old, who was getting a stomach bug every other month, hasn’t been sick since he started eating it! That’s a win. No more holding buckets for me!


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