NQH: Woolzies Dryer Balls Review & Giveaway

When looking into different ways to save money around our house laundry (after switching to cloth diapers) was the first place I looked at for different ways to save money. We are always doing laundry and dishes it seems like around here, so any way to save some money and reduce our energy bills, I am willing to try!

Wool dyer balls are something that I have been wanting to try out for a while now. I read a lot of cloth diapering blogs and I kept seeing them mentioned and wanted to know what all the hype was about. I had seen many Woolzies giveaways going on throughout the past month and decided to look a little more into wool dryer balls. While doing some research on dryer balls, Woolzies posted on their facebook that they were still looking for more reviewers, so after giving it some thought I decided to contact them to do a review and giveaway. I was very excited when they contacted me to host the giveaway on my blog.

Woolzies Dryer Balls

Woolzies Dryer Balls

Why should you make the switch to Woolzies Dryer Balls?

The number one reason I wanted to try wool dryer balls was that they stated it would reduce your drying time by 25%. This is something that we need in our household with the amount of laundry we do. During the spring and summer months I line dry our cloth diaper laundry to help reduce the amount of energy we use. Normally we have to run 2 dryer cycles to get all the clothes dry, and sometime 2.5 dryer cycles for our cloth diaper inserts and fitteds.

The first load of laundry that I used the dryer balls on was our cloth diaper inserts and fitteds, and I was able to get them dry in about 2 dryer cycles. Next I used the dryer balls on a medium/large load of laundry. When the timer when off on the dryer I went in to check them and to my surprise they were completely dry. I was so excited that I wasn’t going to have to wait another hour for my laundry to get done drying. I had a pretty large load in the washer next to dry, and it took about 1.5 dryer cycles for them to completely dry. Woolzies recommends 8 dryer balls for a large load so this did not disappoint me.

Woolzies Dryer Balls with regular laundry

Woolzies Dryer Balls with regular laundry

Other Reasons to try Woolzies Dryer Balls!

Woolzies dryer balls are 100% eco-friendly and chemical free. They are also safe for people who have wool sensitivities and are looking for a hypoallergenic option to dryer sheets. Woolzies also naturally softens your clothes, reduces static and helps eliminate wrinkles. Lastly Woolzies are guaranteed to last for 1,000 loads. If I do on average 5 loads of laundry a week, that’s including regular laundry and cloth diaper laundry, my Woolzies dryer balls should last me almost 4 years!

How can you get your own Woolzies Dryer Balls?

Check out Woolzies website at www.Woolzies.com, or their facebook page. You can also enter to win some here on the Not Quite Homemade Blog below.

Visit the Not Quite Homemade Facebook Page and enter in the giveaway tab or simply click Rafflecopter giveaway to take you straight to the entry form. 

 

 

 

Not Quite Homemade did not receive any compensation for this post.  Disclosure: I did receive the product for free to try and am sharing my opinion with you.  My opinion may differ from yours. 

NQH: Broccoli and Bacon Mac & Cheese

Last night’s dinner was super easy, quick and delicious I must share it with everyone. I had found a recipe for Mac & Cheese with broccoli and bacon. They wanted you to pretty much make everything from scratch. There was no way being a working Mom and getting home around 5 every week night that I had the time (or skills) to pull off a gourmet Mac & Cheese Dinner.

I took a trip to the grocery store to see if I could simplify this good-looking recipe. When picking out some elbow noodles in the pasta aisle I spotted some Ragu cheese sauce in the pasta sauce section. This was going to help make this dinner come together quickly, instead of the multiple cheeses that I would have had to combine and melt together for the gourmet recipe. After finding this sauce and grabbing my elbow noodles of the shelf all I needed next was frozen broccoli and some bacon.

I returned home with my groceries and began to make dinner. I was able to get all of the ingredients cooked and together in probably 20-30 minutes. Once the noodles, broccoli and bacon were done cooking all I needed to do was combine the ingredients and add them to a big bowl then mix them together. Bam, dinner was complete!

I absolutely loved how quick and easy this dinner was. If you are looking for something that needs to be done in a hurry or you just don’t have that much time to spend on dinner this is the recipe for you! For a family of 3 we had plenty left for leftover to take in our lunches the next day.  I hope you all enjoy this dish.

Bacon and Broccoli Mac & Cheese

Bacon and Broccoli Mac & Cheese

Not Quite Homemade: Bacon and Broccoli Mac & Cheese

1 lb of Noodles (Elbow/Spiral any kind really)
½ bag of Frozen Broccoli
1 Jar of Ragu Cheese Sauce
6-8 Strips of Bacon

1.       Cook all ingredients according to their packages

2.       Combine all ingredients in a big bowl

3.       Mix well and Enjoy

Tip: Cook a whole package of bacon and add extra to each serving that is dished out if you are a bacon lover like myself.

Cloth Wipe Solution with Essential Oils

Even if you don’t use cloth diapers you can still use cloth wipes. My husband and I started using cloth wipes that I had made from old receiving blankets. They weren’t the best but did their job. We now have some name brand cloth wipes as well as some Work At Home Mom (WAHM) wipes that are amazing.

In the beginning I would make my solution and then put it in a spray bottle and wet each wipe before cleaning up my little one. This was very time consuming, and when trying to change a toddler that does not want to stay still spraying each wipe wasn’t going to do it any more. After doing some research into essential oils I found that I could use Tea Tree oil in my current cloth wipe solution to help keep the wipes fresh, and just have them pre-moistened in the container. This has helped out tremendously and makes diaper changes so much easier. We have also found we use less cloth wipes during a bad diaper change than we do with disposable wipes.

Not Quite Homemade: Cloth Wipes

Not Quite Homemade: Cloth Wipes

NQH’s Cloth Wipe Solution:

Supplies
1. Old baby wipe container
2. 15-20 Cloth Wipes
3. 1 tbs of Baby Lotion
4. 1 tbs of Baby Wash
5. 1 tbs of Baby Oil
6. 3-5 drops of Tea Tree Oil
7. 1 cup of hot water

The first thing you want to do is to fold your wipes to fit into the container and place them in. You can fold them so that they pop out of your container just like baby wipes.

Next you will want a measure out a cup of hot water and add your baby lotion, wash, oil to the water. I find putting the baby oil in first helps the other product slide right out of your measuring spoon.

After you add you ingredients then put in 3-5 drops of Tea Tree Oil and mix it all together really well.

Lastly you are going to pour it over the wipes and you are all finished.

DIY Liquid Laundry Detergent

Ingredients for DIY Liquid Detergent

Ingredients for DIY Liquid Detergent

When looking to save money I stumbled across many different DIY household cleaners. The first one that I tried out was homemade laundry detergent. Laundry is something that I feel we are doing constantly in our home. With a one year old that loves to make messes and a husband that works around grease filled foods all day laundry is a constant battle in our house. Don’t get me wrong I actually enjoy doing laundry, it has kind of a calming effect on me, but the one thing I absolutely hate to do is to put the laundry away.

I have tried a few different laundry detergent recipes from liquid to powder detergent. So far my favorite has been the liquid detergent. I feel I get more out of my money this way, because I am able to make the supply last longer with the liquid detergent. I have adapted a couple recipes to make my own and a few tricks along the way to help out the process and make it a bit easier. The following is the recipe that I am currently using with our laundry at home.

Kayla’s Liquid Detergent:

Supplies:

Grated Zote Soap

Grated Zote Soap

½ cup of Borax
½ cup of Arm & Hammer Super Washing Soda
1/3 bar of Zote Soap Shredded (or 1/3 bar of Fels-Naptha)
2 Gallons of water
Pot to cook soap in
Storage container (I use a 3 gallon bucket with a lid)

  1. Shred your Zote Soap. I use a cheese grater from my kitchen, a food processor would work just as well.
  2. Put half a gallon of water into your pot and bring it to a boil. Once it is boiling put in the shredded Zote soap.
  3. Once your Zote soap is melted and your mixture is boiling again add your Borax and Super Washing Soda. Let this boil slowly for about 5 minutes and continue to stir.
  4. While boiling the soaps, pour 1.5 gallons of cold water into your storage container
  5. Once your soap is done boiling pour your soap into the container with the cold water.
  6. Your soap and water will start to combine. You are going to want to mix it together with a mixing spoon until well blended
  7. Let your soap sit for 30-45 minutes. When you come back to your soap it will more than likely be gelled together. You are going to want to mix it up again really well, and it is ready to use.

Once you have made your laundry detergent you will only need to use about half a cup of the detergent per load of laundry.  The detergent will be a little thicker then you are used to with store bought detergent. If it is too thick for you next time you make the detergent use a little less of the Zote Soap in it.

I keep my soap in the 3 gallon bucket with a lid on it, my husband was able to get this for me from his work. You may use any kind of storage container that fits your family’s needs.

Finished DIY Liquid Detergent

Finished DIY Liquid Detergent

I have really enjoyed using and making this detergent. The only thing I have had to go out and buy is another bar of Zote Soap. Your box of Borax and Super Washing Soda will last you a long while, unless you are using them for other chores around the house.

This recipe I have adjusted from different ones I have found online. I have made about 4 batches of it so far and have shared with friends and family. This is also a great gift to give to anyone that is looking into ways to cut down money they are spending on household items.

Not Quite Homemade… The Beginning…

Hello everyone,

Welcome to Not Quite Homemade: tips and trick from a working mom. I am a mom to one cute little girl who also works full-time through the week. My husband and I have been finding different ways to save money, and I would like to share those tips with everyone.

I plan to share many different things that can help families out around the house. I will be posting quick and easy recipes for busy families, tips on how to make household chores easier and quicker. Each family is different and some of these tips might not fit your family, but hopefully you will find many that will.

As my family has been looking for different ways to save money we have also looked in to some greener options for our home. I will be exploring many of ways to help my family become more grean and earth friendly, and you will get to ready about that journey.

For those who know me personally you know that I already cloth diaper my daughter and love it. There will be posts on cloth diapering as it has been a great way for our family to save money. Cloth diapers have helped my family look at different ways to save money and it was a great starting point for us looking at where our money was going.

I hope you will enjoy reading this blog as much as I will have writing it. If you have suggestions on things you would like me to try or review feel free to leave a comment.

Enjoy,

Kayla