Monday, April 12, 2010

Back in the Day . . .

Back in the day, somewhere between 1996 and 1998, I made a lot of soap. Hundreds of pounds of soap. Truckloads. Some good, some bad, and some really effing awful. One thing I remember best about those days was the single-minded passion -- I couldn't wait to get home to create what I'd dreamed up during the day at work. While I answered phone calls from insurance investigators requesting medical and legal records on a client, half my brain was formulating the next big soap idea. I always felt like I was just toeing my way in the door of this wonderful art form, not all the way quite in it, just standing outside, looking through the cracks in the doorway because my time was split between work and family and my passion for soap making . . . I also remember listening to lots of Dave Matthews (to this day, certain songs take me right back to my poorly lit garage and the three, yes, three! picnic tables covered with drying soap), and the dizzy, loopy, even high feeling of being in a room with no ventilation surrounded by the cloying scent of a hundred different essential oils. My niece Leah and I would work tirelessly in the garage, mixing, pouring, cutting, stacking, all the while laughing like cackling hens because one, we were exhausted, and two, we were punch drunk on fumes!

Those were the days.


  1. 1998 was my year of researching soap. Half my brain was on it at work. 1999 was my year of learning to make it safely and properly. 2000 was my year of making a lot of it. The whole time I'd have half a brain or a quarter of my brain on the task at hand, and the rest would be on soap.

    My kitchen was my workshop, and especially in 2000 it was also my soapbox literally, because I was listening to election lead-up and coverage on NPR much of the time I was in there.

    I still miss that kitchen even though it was cramped. Its layout was good for production.

  2. In the beginning it is quite the obsession.

    I miss my garage layout too. It was quiet, nobody came in while I was working, and I could do laundry at the same time! Haha!

    I think what I remember best was the music, the laughing, and the feeling of euphoria when a soap batch came out as I'd imagined. Good times. Good times.



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