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mother of josh, richard, and mutt. lover of books, yarn, and the quiet places. spinner, knitter, kayaker, survivor, vandweller, warrior.

Monday, July 27, 2009

to poo or not to poo

okay, so this is not about pooping. but i hope i got your attention. pooping will be for another post, after i am sure you all love me enough to come back after reading it. some people don't do well with discussions about body functions, and i don't want to discourage what readers i get. but after all, we all have body functions, and vandwelling raises some challenging issues of dealing with them. but for the record, i have never, ever passed gas in my whole entire life. no kidding. just wanted to make that clear, as there are some who might pass nasty rumors about me. same thing with snoring. nada. unlike my numees, who makes stealth vandwelling a thing of the past for sweet mike. just repeating what he said. anyhow....

this post is about shampoo. or more specifically, no shampoo.

in my efforts to simplyfy my life and downsize my gear, i spend alot of time evaluating stuff i use, and whether i can find items that are multi-purpose to eliminate redundancy. for instance, i use dr. bronner's for both my bath soap and dish soap and dog shampoo. i have used it as a shampoo, and in a pinch as a toothpaste. i also use it for handwashing clothes.

my usual routine for doing my hair has been to use Aussie's shampoo/conditioner combination. the perfumes they use are not too overwhelming, and it definitely leaves my hair soft. but it has been impossible to find these last few months, so i began searching for an alternative. dr. bronners peppermint soap does clean my hair really well, but i didn't want to add a bottle of conditioner to my toiletry kit, so i was googling around the 'net looking to see if there was a different dilution of the bronner's i could use to get softer results. what i found was a whole lot of info and blogs about the no 'poo revolution.

seems there are as many reasons to go shampoo-less as there are methods of doing it. some folks want to cut down on the amount of plastics they put into the environment, while some want to cut down on the chemicals they put in their body. some do it for economy, and some for simplicity. after reading some of the websites and blogs and the hundreds of comments from people who have done it, i thought that all of these reasons were valid.

if you click on the blog title above, it will take you to an article that will answer some of your questions. blogger is not letting me add extra links for some reason, so google "no poo" or "shampoo alternative" for some great blogs on the topic.

my experience so far has been interesting. the baking soda wash with the vinegar rinse method seemed to be a little too complex....the mixing and the waiting and the "put this one on the roots and this one on the ends only" was intimidating, along with the comments that stated alot of rinsing was necessary. of course, there's that multiple bottle issue....

what i have found that works pretty well is washing my hair with dr. bronners every 2 or 3 days (no conditioner)with just a quick rinse with water and a scalp massage on the days in between. my hair feels different. it has taken some geting used to. it doesn't feel greasy, just different, and cathy says it doesn't smell funny.

my hair is super fine and has developed alot of natural wave in the last 2 years. i only have a few threads of grey so far, so it is still very soft. what it doesn't have is is very limp and fly away. since cutting out the shampoo/conditioner routine, my hair has alot more body and curl. the kind of body that i could only get using some kind of styling lotion like "curly sexy hair". (which i hated the feel of, so rarely used it.)

so, ultimitely i have come full circle.....seems i washed my hair, stripping out the oils, so had to use a conditioner to prevent dryness. then i had to use a styling product if i wanted any kind of control or body.....

now, i've eliminated all the in-between steps, as well as costs and bottles of stuff, to use a mild soap (not toxic, like detergents in shampoo). the oil production in my hair has leveled out, and what i get is just my hair in a state as close to natural as possible. i'm really liking it, considering i used to feel i could do without a daily shower if necessary, as long as i could wash my hair. i am now in the process of growing my hair out, so we'll see how it goes as it gets longer.

i'd love to hear from any of your experiences if you have tried this, or any comments on hair care on the road.........

the state of the rondyvan

i dropped the rondyvan off at cathy and garry's this morning for an inspection and an oil change. everything was a-ok. i had been having this scraping noise anytime i went over any bump or dip in the road. it seemed to originate from the right front end, and only happened when i had a passenger. it has done it ever since i hit the deer last year, and the guy at the body shop who did the repairs thought i was probably hearing things. anyhow, i hadn't heard it in awhile, since it's been a couple months since i had a passenger, but i told garry to check it out. he found a piece of fender or something that was scraping the tire, and pulled it out of the way for me. just in time for me to have made a commitment to "just say no to passengers", allowing me to turn my passenger seat around backwards again.....

i bought a set of lap belts last year when i first reversed the seat, so passengers can be belted. they are easy to install during reversal. i know nm brian recently reversed his seat, and from the smile on his face i think he feels the same way i do about it :-)

i LOVE how much more space i have when the seat is reversed. with the new twin bed mattress, i gave up a little bit more floor space, and had no place for the canoe chair. (you can see it folded up on top of the storage drawers on the left in the pic). so i still don't have a place for the canoe chair, but i have a place to sit. i will have to make a decision on the canoe chair sometime before i leave.

which brings me back to the state of the rondyvan. the only things i need to have done before heading out again is to flush the radiator and to have a tune-up, which is cool because about $300 will have us roadworthy and milking every last MPG i can. which should keep me in my budget and with a projected leave date of end of september, beginning of october.

as usual, i have several directions i want to go all at the same time. i got an invite to come to wisconsin to see a long-time friend who i've never met face-to-face, and of course i gotta head south to find david h. and rile up the Wizard a bit, if i can track him down. vanmom's moving to colorado and i gotta go see her before she changes her mind, and heaven only knows where i'll find NM Brian, mar and bernie, tom, or swankie......ron, well, i know where he lives :-) and heidi and mike have a piece of driveway saved for me......i can't list all the folks i want to meet, or to see again.

so many friends to love, and so little time! have i mentioned that i love my life?

postscript: i had to laugh. when they got done with the rondyvan today, i got an email that said "your home is finished"!!!!

Thursday, July 23, 2009

go play outside

i've been busy. not being able to do much on the computer, and not being able to read much has been good for me actually. i have to go out and play to keep myself out of trouble :-)

i like playing in my boat. i just visited a place i really like, and got to visit lewis and clark cove, which was overrun with fisherman the last time i was there. i don't know if it is really called that, but Ann and Lexi say it is. but i am skeptical, because they also tell me that the other end of this lake is called "deepest darkest africa", which makes me think they are full of it.

i also like to hang out with Mutt. he likes to hang out with me, too, unless i am in the mood to make him wear silly things like hats and babushkas. then he just tolerates me. if i put something on him and say "leave it!" he usually does. after i took this picture he was possesed with the urgent need to snuggle up against sarah's leg, therefore dislodging my REI river cap from his head. how would you describe the look on his face????

i went picking strawberries with cathy and marge. that is marge below, with strawberries. i think she is saying "don't you DARE" when i took her picture here. but she did give reluctant permission for me to put it on my blog. she's a good sport. especially on the night that a bunch of us were helping GJ make hay. marge and cathy and i were tossing bales on the wagon while marge's daughter drove the truck. except jenna drove pell mell down the field while Marge (her mom) was still attached to the bale she had just tossed on the wagon. GJ seemed to think it took longer to make hay with us "helping", but i think he never had as much fun making hay without us.

this is a picture of some boats taken at an outfitters down near john and rosie and bobby nomads' place. one of my favorite places to paddle is on secret creek here. the outfitter is called Shank's Mare, and i mention it because i stole their logo for my blogpost title. if you click on the title, it will take you to their website. their logo has become my mantra. "go play outside"

below is my screen saver. a reminder of where i oughta be if i am idle more than a few minutes :-)

Thursday, July 16, 2009

i'm back!

actually, i never left. so much has been going on, and i'm anxious to catch you all up on stuff.

first of all, i put a counter on my blog this month, and am astounded at how many hits i'm getting. i really thought few people read it, so i am humbled and honored by each and every one of you who stops by to see what mutt and i are up to. thank-you. there is alot more to come. soon.

i had a recent doctor visit, and all my follow-up labs and ultrasounds are good.....cancer free, if not "cured", and determined to stay that way.....i am being compliant with my med dosage, and will continue to do so. i don't have a follow up visit for one whole year :-) so that is good! i will deal with the discomforts of the meds....that ends up being alot less drama in the long run.

so, now, a story. in january, right before i left for texas, i had an appointment with my opthamologist, who was concerned with a little glitch in my exam. he scheduled me for an appointment with a specialist, and said he wanted some baseline testing done. my vision had been a little wonky, but i thought i needed new glasses. i don't. he felt that this "wonky" was a side effect of the meds, and was dose related. so he made me an appointment with this doctor for the following month, and sent me on my way. that left me with a big decision....san antonio? or doctor appointment? the slabs? or.....

so of course, i hit the road the next day. called the specialist from the slabs and said i'd have to reschedule. are you suprised?

so my vision is rough right now ......i can't do more than a few minutes on the computer or a few pages in a book before i can't read anything. this is apparently something this new doc can fix, so i gotta be patient.

so please be patient with me! i have lots to yak about. my internet presence has been real minimal everywhere, and do virtually nothing by email or text message anymore. anything i do will be here, at night when i can "sleep it off" afterwards.

just as a little teaser, though, the title of my next blog is gonna be "to poo, or not to poo?" you'll love it!