I feel like a mother after her baby takes her first steps. This actually started out kind of rough, and I wasn't sure I was going to be able to keep this one.
In the morning, I unmolded the soap (I noticed it was quite bumpy on top) and surprise, it looked pretty good! I did notice that the top layer has some areas that are lighter in color, but I think it is going to be OK, as they are not brittle, hard or otherwise suspicious looking. I will definitely keep a close eye on the texture and test the pH more closely as it cures, to make sure it us safe to use before I use it or give it away. I am actually kind of grateful that I had this experience early on. If this happens again, I will definitely be prepared. I wasn't able to find too much on the web about ricing, so hopefully this will help some other newbie soapers out there.
I do have to say that I am officially in love. I cannot wait to start my next batch of cold process soap. Each time I unmold some new soap, it feels like Christmas! You never really know what you are going to find!