Electric Brakes & Hard Lotion

Hard lotion bars

Hard lotion bars

We got the electric brakes replaced yesterday, so are good to go.  I watched the guy do it so I would understand how they worked.  I even got to stick the wires in the 7 pin connector to test the electrical connection.  😀

So I’m happy — except that it cost $450 of our trip money.

Oh well, at least we will enjoy the trip a lot more knowing that the brakes work as they should.

I started preliminary packing today — starting with cleaning out my purse!  That’s always a chore, but once I’m past that psychological hurdle, I’m primed for the rest.  Got our underwear and linens packed in the Casita, and have sorted out which clothes to take.  Not that I’m anxious or anything!

Lotion bars shrink wrapped for storage.

Lotion bars shrink wrapped for storage.

After the shea butter allergy fiasco, I decided to stick to a very basic lotion recipe.  I decided against a liquid because I didn’t want to add a preservative.  Without a preservative, liquid lotion would have a short shelf life and I would have to keep it refrigerated to keep mold from growing in it.

So I made hard lotion bars, consisting of equal proportions of beeswax, coconut oil and almond oil, scented with several drops of essential oil.  Since it doesn’t contain shea or cocoa butters, it is not as rock hard as some, and is much easier to use.

The almond oil makes it even more moisturizing to my extremely dry skin, and the beeswax keeps the moisture from evaporating.

So — two things have worked out right in a row.  I’m on a roll!  😀

Casita Repairs — & Epic Fail!

Several months ago we had taken the Casita to a local tire shop to have them check the bearings.  They apparently forced too much grease in and blew out the seals on the back.  We ended up with grease squirts in our wheel well, and our brake controller started showing wildly random, nonsensical readings.

Ron took the truck in for service and had them check it to make sure that wasn’t the problem.  They told him the truck’s brakes were fine.

Long story short… we’re having a guy look at the electric brakes on the trailer Wednesday, and are pretty sure they’ll have to be replaced.  And that’s something we need to have done before our next trip.

Secondly, we have to park the Casita under trees, so we have a problem with mildew growing on the roof.  Before our last trip, Ron was scrubbing the roof and decided that a foam mildew remover would make the job easier.  What we didn’t count on was the foam running down the sides of the trailer and leaving chalky streaks in the Poliglow.  It did.  It totally ruined the finish.

So I got the old Poliglow stripped off the top half of the trailer before it turned cold.  But the weather hasn’t been warm enough to reapply it until now.  Now that it is warm enough, we are also getting rain.  And I can’t apply the new coats of Poliglow when there is a chance of rain.

So we will probably head to Texas with a matte finish trailer instead of a shiny white egg unless we get a break in the weather really soon.

My cayenne infused oil made a gorgeous pinkish red salve.  Unfortunately, it doesn't work!  :)

My cayenne infused oil made a gorgeous pinkish red salve. Unfortunately, it doesn’t work! 🙂

The epic fail story?

I’ve rarely used shea butter before.  When I did, it was always way down the list of ingredients in a lotion.  Since I had read that shea butter was superb for eczema treatment, I ordered a pound of it for my homemade creams and lotions.

Last night I made two big batches of shea butter cream and lotion — then slathered myself with that wonderfully rich, creamy goodness before going to bed.

Rich, silky, deeply moisturizing cream -- that I'm violently allergic to!

Rich, silky, deeply moisturizing cream — that I’m violently allergic to!

I woke up itching — bigtime!  I had a weepy red rash all over my body!  It never occured to me that I might be allergic to shea butter, but I am.  Violently allergic to it!

So tonight I’ll scrape my creations out of the jars so I can reuse them.  Then I’ll make another batch.  This time it will be unscented, and with no shea butter!

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