My first attempt at soap took forevvvvvvvvvvvvvvver and I stirred it by hand. Then I checked the internet and saw that everyone recommended the stick blender - very happy boy after buying myself one. You are amazing for persevering. Well done!
I've not tried to make the castille soap yet but I have made a nice new lemony soap. I had tried using lemon essential oil but it tends to lose its scent very quickly. I found that using essential oil of lemongrass gives you the lovely lemon scent, costs a fraction of the price and lasts longer.
Not tried selling the soap as you need to be certified somehow (something to do with using the lye) but I've given it out to friends and no-one's died yet and they haven't been bleached either!