October 2014


The summer has ended. Autumn is here with its cooler days and nights. We are working on stocking the wood bins with firewood for the winter. Evenings in the Zahn household are spent before a fire in the stove while we catch up on the news, knitting, trimming bars of soap or playing with Beau, our six-year old rottweiler


My campaign for State Senator continues. Election Day is one month out (November 4, 2014). I have spent quite a bit of time this past summer walking and knocking on doors in the cities of WI District 13. In doing so I have discovered neighborhoods I never knew were there. I live in such a beautiful state! The people here are warm and friendly for the most part. By and large I have learned that we have so much in common. Most people agree that we must get big money out of politics. Most agree that our schools are in need of and deserve much more adequate funding. Most agree that we must protect our clean air and water for generations to come. Hopefully I will do well when all votes have been counted and I will be able to serve the people of my district as their representative in Madison.


As chair of the Dodge County Antique Power Club’s Women’s Committee it is my responsibility to head up the annual display in an antique school house located at the DCAPC Show grounds in Burnett, WI. The club holds a show each year during the first full weekend of August. This past summer we featured vintage clothing and jewelry. Collectors from our local towns gathered with their beautiful possessions to share them for display. We had wedding gowns from three centuries, as well as shoes, purses, coats, under garments, children’s clothing and more. A local historical society treated us twice to a “Dress the Bride” demonstration, using one of our very young, very slim members, Ashley, as a model.


They brought the wedding dress and complete wedding day outfit typical of a bride of 1860 in a steam trunk from the era.


Over the course of more than an hour we witnessed the process of dressing the bride, layer by layer of beautiful garment pieces, all hand sewn, until Ashley was completely dressed.


At each step the docents from the historical society explained what each piece of the garment was called, what it was made of, how it might have been sewn and who in the family might have sewn it.


We learned many interesting things about the way things were done 150 years ago.


We need a veil.


The result was lovely.


During the DCAPC show in the school house we promote all kinds of fiber arts as well. Each year we have several members and their friends join us throughout the weekend demonstrating their favorite traditional fiber arts. We might have someone making hand-crocheted lace, knitting a sweater or using an antique knitting machine to make a pair of socks. Throughout the years we have had rug weavers, scherenschnitte (German paper cutting), hand quilters, spinners, tatters making lace, soap making and silk painting. 



Pictured above is my friend, Bee Hahn, teaching a young onlooker how to spin wool using a hand spindle. Within minutes she had him making his very own sample of hand spun yarn.


Children come through our school house all weekend to see and learn new things and to buy old fashioned penny candy, which we feature for sale throughout the weekend as long as it lasts.


We had an interesting learning opportunity when a gentleman showed up with a kid sized log cabin kit.


In no time they were cooperating with one another to build a cabin in which they could play!


It had windows and doors! It had a roof!


All finished and cooling off out of the hot sun.


Come join us next year when we will feature music and musical instruments of the past as well as phonographs, records and anything music related.





In preparation for the Christmas Season I have been working on a collection of recipes from the Zahn/Krahn/Colburn/Smith (Jim’s and my mothers and grandmothers) family recipe card box. From Ada’s Apple Cake to Gramma Zahn’s Bread with lots in between, there are 35 recipe cards to add to your recipe box. All recipes in this collection are “from scratch” with old-fashioned “real” ingredients. Get yours free when you place your order between November 28 and December 19, 2014. As in the past, I will be offering an early order discount (with coupon code) during this time as well.  


Dry Skin? Stock up on my Oatmeal Complexion Soap

to help keep your skin moisturized during the winter months! 


I get letters!


We sure like your soaps! Don’t like to be out. Even my husband says it’s time to order :) Thanks a bunch!                 - E.M. Seymour, IA


Thank you such “awesome” soap! The Lemon Aloe is my favorite! It keeps my skin in the best condition!!! Thank you so much! - M.B.  Jersey Shore, PA


Back in the early 90’s, being in the Navy, I was stationed in Okinawa and read an article about “The Soap Lady” in Stars and Stripes newspaper.  I thought it would be nice to have some homemade soap from home. I ordered the Fresh Meadow and its smell reminded me of memories of home. My skin felt soft and clean. I will not use commercial soap ever again.               - D.W. Kenosha, WI


I have been using your soap since 1991 and certainly hope you continue to make soap forever! If not, I will need to stock up!! Thanks for the years of wonderful soap.          - M. M., White Bear Lake, MN


I have been a long-time sufferer of all kinds of weird, itchy, irritated, flaky, swollen skin, with all sorts of recommendations and money spent at the dermatologist, etc., and I am ecstatic to let you know that your Cerulean Pacific has healed my skin completely!  I have been using it for about a month now, and the redness and irritation are gone!!!  Not that you are surprised by this, but I hope newcomers to this site are willing to give this soap a try, if they have problem skin.  I think they will be pleasantly surprised. Also, I love the washcloths.  If you decided to make hand towels and bath towels, I would buy them, also! I plan on making another purchase soon as gifts for Mother’s Day, so I can get more people hooked on this soap.  Thank you!



To subscribe to my online newsletter, please email 

thesoaplady@thesoaplady.com and put “Newsletter” in the subject line.