I know that many of you are following along each day, trying to accomplish the tasks as we do them. Consider this a day off.
I know it's not for everybody, but my husband and I recently decided to get dreadlocks!
The Why: We have been trying a number of natural ways to wash our hair, things that didn't involve nasty chemicals. We tried the baking soda and apple cider vinegar method and gave it a couple weeks because apparently your hair needs a couple weeks of a new routine for the PH to balance out or something like that. We tried a shampoo bar and found it left an awful residue that made our hair feel heavy and dirty. We bought an expensive natural shampoo that works nicely, but is just too costly considering how much hair we have. And both of us, for ages, have wanted dreads. As we struggled against our hair to try and get it silky smooth without using any of the chemicals that make it silky smooth we finally just decided to get dreads.
I had dreadlocks when we met, and I spent weeks conditioning them and tediously washing and combing them out 7 years ago because I felt that it was time to start looking like a responsible grown up. I am so over that.
Dreadlocks are a journey. They are a practice in patience and contentment. They take time to become what they are going to be, and in the mean time you just wear a lot of bandannas! They are controlled chaos. Instead of using products to get your hair to look a certain way, you just wash dreads with regular soap and let them do what they naturally want to do. I don't just love our new dreads, I love the idea of dreads.
The Verdict: I know that a lot of you have actual jobs that require you to look professional. I know that this isn't for everyone, that many of you are shaking your heads right now and writing us off as crazy hippies. But for us this is a letting go of what we think we ought to be. For us, this is a stepping into freedom.
Besides, let's face it: Luke is a construction worker with a passion for organic farming. He reads Joel Salatin and Wendell Berry and will go off on tangents about Monsanto and Walmart if you let him. I am a tattooed homeschool mom who wears clothes I made myself and writes about giving away all our stuff....we weren't really ever in the running for normal anyways!
The kids, by the way, don't have dreads. They are using Aubrey Organics Blue Chamomile Shampoo (It is currently the second highest rated shampoo on GoodGuide.com, a site that rates products according to their safety to our health, environmental effects, and social impact). My five year old is asking for dreads, but we just aren't sure. We've told her to ask again when she's six....
We are doing one small thing (almost) every day for a year to create a simpler, quieter, more intentional life. Take a moment to read all About Us, check out The Rules of our year long project and sign up for our RSS feed or "like" us on facebook so that you can follow our journey to radical simplicity!