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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  1. Oh dear! Sounds like you need a strong drink! Or a soothing bubble bath! I often deal with stresses (like trailer problems) with activity that I’m confident will be successful – I hate it when the universe stacks the deck on me. Hopefully, your next experiments will work out better. I’m anxious to see how the arthritis experiments evolve – I could use some new options

    • It does seem like I’m fighting an uphill battle lately. But I’m counting on reaching a plateau pretty soon!

      I think I’ll wait a couple of days before I make the frankincense and myrrh salve. I’m counting on it to help a little, at least! 🙂

      I am having good results with sleep formulas. But I want to tweak them and try a couple of other things before I publish them.

  2. Sorry about the brakes but better to have things fixed before your trip!! Also, sorry about your reaction to the the shea butter!! I know you were miserable with all that itching…hopefully you got things straightened out.

    • I really wish I could wait to have the brakes fixed, but don’t dare.

      I just used a bath scrubbie to get as much of the shea butter off my skin as I could, then slathered with Caladryl Clear. The rash is almost gone now. 🙂

  3. But it looks so good!

    Yikes on the brake work. It sounds expensive but what do I know?

    Look forward to seeing your sleep remedy. Do share¡

  4. Sorry to hear about the recent string of bad luck! It sounds like you can laugh at adversity and that’s a good thing. But you keep trying and that what makes life so fun…and fun to read about, too! Have fun!

    • Thanks, Brad. I didn’t used to be very good at it, but I am finally learning to roll with the punches — and everything aggravating that happens will soon be history! 🙂

  5. What a shame all this work your doing hasn’t been doing what you hoped for. And the rash would not do for me either. I’ve used shea butter but not very heavy. I also have very sensitive skin so I have to be very careful what I use.

    • Sometimes it feels like I’m trying to roll a stone uphill! On the bright side, it’s definitely increasing my patience. 😀

      That was my sole reason for deciding to experiment with my own lotions. I could know that the ingredients were pure and safe. I’m back to beeswax, coconut, almond and olive oils for my bases now!

  6. Carla

     /  December 2, 2013


  7. Have you tried just plain ol organic coconut oil? I used to make my own lotions too and used shea butter… I have very dry, itchy skin and coconut oil works great… nothing added

    I’ve done what you have done and let me tell you! I’d rather it burn than itch… hate that itching business… sure does look deeelicious though

    • Yes, Carolyn, I’ve used plain organic coconut oil and I love it. The only thing I don’t like is the greasy feel. But I’ll make up a batch of lotion with it, then I can have the wonderful benefit of the coconut oil in a form that is more pleasant for me to use.

      The cream was sublime! It hurts to waste it! Thanks for the compliment. I was so proud of it! 🙂

  8. Bonnie

     /  December 2, 2013

    OMGoodness………..ah ha ha ha ha. Hope you are OK now. But good for you for trying these different recipes. Nice to know we have a little scientist in our group ; )

  9. Don’t know ’bout all those lotions and potions and stuff but it sounds like a real bummer.

    Man I would be all over those guys with the grease gun. I hate when that stuff happens and had it on the truck a while back. Goodyear has a nationwide warranty and they covered me on an expensive repair. The first fix was in Tallahasee, FL, then nearly 6 months later a redo was required in Sullivan MO. That warranty is a good deal.

    Hoping you get a good dry warmer spell to do that topcoat. I have heard of that Polyglow, how did you remove it?

    • Wayne, we live in a tiny, rural town. Those guys are just a local auto tire shop. I asked them to grease our bearings so I wouldn’t have to drive to another town and deal with the hassle of scheduling RV work. So I can’t blame them. They didn’t know what they were doing, but they were just trying to help. I learned an expensive lesson.

      I removed the Poliglow with Poliglow stripper, which is ammonia based. I’m betting some ammonia and water in a squirt bottle would work just as well. I also used Bar Keepers Friend and elbow grease! 🙂

  10. Maybe you’re getting all the bad juju out of your system now. Hope this little spate of bad stuff means that you’ve got clear sailing going forward. I can guess how much it must pain you to have your Casita all streaky, but you’ll probably be the only one who notices!

    • Judy, I really hope this is just a test and that it will be over soon. I’m trying to pass it with flying colors! 🙂

      Yes, the Casita breaks my heart. As far as things go, it was the most important one in my life. It hurts to not be able to keep it looking nice.

  11. Wow, you sure are having a run of it! Be sure to just use a SMALL amount of the new creams to test them first! I’ve heard you have to be careful of how much grease goes into the fittings or you can ruin the brakes…..but one would assume a mechanic would know that. I’m sorry for all the rotten luck!

  12. Marcia GB

     /  December 3, 2013

    Sorry about your brakes but very glad you are getting them taken care of before you leave.
    I am very interested in your creams and lotions. Bad luck on the shea butter reaction, hope you find an acceptable substitute.

    • Marcia, I have a recipe for a nice, pure lotion using coconut and almond oils. When I make it, I will post the recipe… which I found somewhere else on the net. I like it better than any of my recipes!

  13. I like to think of such things as some of life’s bloobers! Hang in there.

    • Yep…. and in the grand scheme of things, they are probably designed to help strengthen me. Although I think I would be perfectly content staying where I am for a while. 😀

  14. Kay G.

     /  December 3, 2013

    Shea and avocado butter both appear have a form of latex in them (different than rubber latex). It is possible that you are allergic to that ingredient. I’d consider skipping avocado oil as well. Good luck with the lotions!

    • Kay! I am violently allergic to latex! And wool, lanolin and anything having to do with a sheep. I had no idea that shea butter and avocado butter have a form of latex in them.

      Thank you so much for that explanation!!!

  15. Horst

     /  December 3, 2013

    It brings back memory of what my Dad would say…Horst…”it Builds Character”..take care, Horst sends

    • That it does. I don’t like these lessons, but I can always see improvement in patience and unflappability down the line. 🙂

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