Little Cabin Soaps
That Old Bar of Soap
Updated: Jan 7, 2022
Random thoughts as we settle into winter... maybe you have rain, maybe you have snow, maybe it's sunny and 80 degrees where you are. But we all face the same January - a new year, the quietest time of the year, for some it's a very sad and quiet time. We are somber and reflective of the past, hopeful and eager for what lies ahead. I think about this as I move through the days. mapping out the spring line, thinking of what to introduce and try, making sure I have best sellers in stock. This is a super random blog, so ride with me here, I'm all over the place.
I go grocery shopping and see the last piles of Christmas items on clearance.... things folks were so excited about just weeks ago, now heaped into bins, they've lost their luster and magic. With the glitz and glamour gone, I wonder - why is that? We can't wait to get our decorations up, I will keep mine up for another week to enjoy that soft glow, that warm ambiance. Then I will lovingly tuck them away, packed carefully until it's time to bring them out next year. I will enjoy some counter space and do some baking on those available countertops. I will enjoy the open areas of the house and the cleaning behind corners and underneath things that have been covered in holiday cheer. But why in stores are we frantically snapping up these items, only to forget about them just a week later?
Some chapters of my life will be closing this year, some doors will open (I wish I knew what they were now please!) and change will come. The very best days are the boring days, I have discovered this over the past few very hard years. The days that lack chaos or emergencies are the best days. When I am still, I can watch my dogs sleep and there is nothing urgent - those are the most precious times. I cherish and savor the nights when I just watch them sleep and the world around is peaceful, how I wish I could burn those moments into my memory.
I think about the frenzy of shopping that happens during the month of December, and it is part of the fun for many of us. It may not look like Currier and Ives these days, but the support of small business I saw this past year was heartwarming. I think about those last few items on the shelves, waiting for their homes, passed over by shoppers again and again. Somehow that related to soap for me, and here's how.
The beautiful thing about cold and hot process soap (the only types I make, yes they are 100% from scratch- I do not make box mix soap) is that it continues to cure as it ages. It loses moisture becoming harder, thus a longer lasting, bar of soap. Sometimes the labels get loose because of this. As soap ages the pH continues to change slowly, becoming more gentle as the soap ages. Yes the scent fades, a bar that's exposed to air and light in a shop will lose some of the fragrance. But that bar of soap becomes the most gentle bar of soap ever, with luscious lather and extra long life in the shower.
I worked very hard to not overdo it last year...I have a tendency to go crazy making the holiday line. I didn't want piles of left over soap, with an unknown year ahead, sitting on inventory is not one of the goals! Everything this year was done in VERY small batches so they'd be gone. I wasn't even going to make lumps of coal, but I'm so so SO glad I did because they sold out first! (that was a first) I realize for some of my customers lumps of coal soap have become tradition in their household - it's become tradition for me to make them. I don't know what the year ahead holds for Little Cabin Soaps, but I will welcome the change of seasons, the old and the new.
So if you find a bar you've had buried in the back of the cupboard for a long time, use it! It's the best one in your house. If you see a bar that's been in a shop for a while, get it! Don't pass up that bar, others may not know it's the most gentle bar the shop has on the shelf. That old bar of soap that's been forgotten about, passed up or overlooked is the best darn bar of soap you'll use. You have found the gem among the sand.... and your skin will thank you for it.