if you're here for a last minute Valentine's Day gift then there's no time for an introduction! Valentine's Day is only a few days away and sometimes chocolate and flowers can be overrated. What we really need is some pampering. And mix that with some handmade love, now that's a gift worth giving and receiving.
Lets get straight to it:
DōTERRA essential oils bath bombs:
1 cup citric acid
1 cup baking soda
½ cup cornstarch
½ cup doTERRA Fractionated Coconut Oil
8-10 drops favorite essential oil or blend
Silicone mold (I used some hearts molds I found at a local thrift store)
I read somewhere that a tennis ball cut in half makes a great mold for the pretty, round bath bombs. In this case, were using hearts. Set these aside and gather your ingredients.
so, real quick, I have to say, "shame on you, reatilers!!"
Each of these ingredients (excluding the essential oils) can be found at a craft store, health store, or pharmacy section. However, the price is triple, if not more than the exact same product you'll find in the grocery section. Seriously. Be sure to do some quick research to find the right price for you.
My sweet girl and I whipped these up in no time- perfect for a last minute project.
be sure to press mixture firmly into molds and allow to dry 24 hours.
drop in your bath to enjoy! We blended wild orange, lavender, and peppermint for a rejuvenating blend. Lavender printed calm feelings, while orange and peppermint are a powerful to replace your stressors with uplifting feelings. Shoot me an email if you need to get your hands on some essential oils. (Shoestringamy@gmail.com)
peace, love, and rejuvenation
Ahhh..... Valentine's Day. I'm such a sucker for love. I'm all about sappy love movies and happy endings. I just can't help myself. Money-sucking-made-up-holiday? Nah, I'm pro-Valentine's Day all the way!
We've never been big, fancy gift givers anyway, so Valentine's Day isn't much different. But, a simple card with a sweet message or teddy bear with a balloon attached and I'm putty in your hands. It doesn't take much to impress me- just a simple gesture.
When I had my bakery open Valentines' Day was insane! The money just rolled in and people spent mega bucks on sweet treats for their kid's, friends, and loved ones. It was actually a little insane. But who am I to complain? It was one- just about- the only times we did pretty well in the bakery business.
The treats that we made were all so very simple: cupcakes with cute toppers, chocolate covered strawberries, (chocolate covered EVERYTHING really...Oreos, cookies, candies...anything that wasn't tied down.) And cake pops were a pretty big deal.
Now that my bakery is closed I can let out the secret: These things are so easy to make! And extremely inexpensive (as long as you're making them at home. The overhead is a pain.) So, skip the bakery, stay home and make the sweet treats yourself. Plus, I guarantee they will be so much more appreciated and so will your wallet!
My favorite vanilla cake recipe:
Peace, Love, and sweet treats!
Mr. & Mrs. seems to be all the rage these days (I crack my self when I say things like that. Sometimes I shock myself at how "mom" I am.... "all the rage these days." who still say that?)
Wedding gifts, towels, pillow cases, and artwork; I've seen Mr. & Mrs. printed on just about everything!
Now, You know I love a good deal. And when something becomes a trend, there's usually no deal to be found. Plus, I like to mix my designs up a bit and go for something a little less traditional.
We're country folk out here in Kentucky (said with my very best southern accent.) So, you know we're hunters.... well, my husband is anyway.What better way to represent us than as a buck and a doe. Awe...isn't that just adorable.
Budget DIY decor isn't my favorite because it's cheap, but because it's so duh-easy. Yeah, duh-easy. I said it.
My favorite art pieces tend to be ones that require very little thought.
DIY Mr. & Mrs. silhouette artwork
Daw. Look at me and the hubby. Aren't we so cute. Crazy to believe our wedding day was 8 years ago!
2. Find your favorite images and fonts; Print. (Be sure to customize the size on print preview to make sure it will fit on a standard sized sheet of paper.)
3. Cut images and fonts out and arrange them on a seperate sheet of printer paper; tape in place. (This will be your worksheet.)
4. Lay your final sheet of paper over top your worksheet; use sharpe to trace sillhouette and font.
5. Frame your maserpiece.
Bonus DIY: Use a paint pen, sharpie, or fabric paint to simply add text to your pillows!
I mean, seriously, duh-easy right? It can't get any easier than that! And it's so cute. You could play around with some different frames, paint/marker colors, and good quality papers.
Easy-peasy-lemon-squeezy. What do you think?
Peace, Love, and art!
b Happy New year! I hope you guys are all doing well and feel rejuivinated and refreshed in this brand new, clean slate 2017. Can you guys believe my little ol' blog is a year old? I feel like we should celebrate!
I don't know if you guys are keeping up over on the Essence side of the blog, but I'm over there keeping a daily diary of my Daniel Fast. It's been....Interesting so far.
Since I'm over there talking about fruits, veggies, and water; How about we talk about the good stuff over here.
Valentine's Day is just around the corner! I don't know why, but I just love Valentine's Day. Even if it is a made up "holiday." And I realize we should be showing each other love every day of the year, not just one day. However, any day where you can put up decorations and celebrate; Why not.
This is a little recipe that I did a long time ago on another blog that I used to write for (Read about that here) I never was much of a cherry fan. Until I actually tried them. Duh. I'm usually the first to try something new. You know when I think of cherries, I think of the little blob they mindlessly throw ontop of icecream. yuck. Apparently, that's not exactly what a fresh cherry tastes like.
Do you agree? Maybe there are people out there that like the little jelatinous blob garnishes. Not I!
These fresh cherries were much, much more delicious. Plus, how can you go wrong when you tuck them inside a little heart shaped dough. Adorable.
Homemade Cherry Handpies Recipe to share with your sweat heart
See more of my recipes HERE
Peace, love, and pie!
New Years Eve is just a flip of the page away. Are you ready for 2017! That just seems crazy to say. I still, very much, remember 1999. I remember imagining the futuristic year 2000; Sitting back listening to Pearl jam with my Chuck Taylors on and burgandy hair dye streaked my wild hair. Oh, wait, sadly I can still say the same about two days ago. That's beside the point.
Because I want to feel the same way I did 17 years ago; Have the same amount of energy and health, I will be doing a Daniel Fast (Read about that here). That means while everyone else is gorging on all the salty, fatty snacks and drinking their fabulous NYE themed drinks, I'll be drinking water.
It's all good. I will be bringing in the new year just as planned! That doesn't mean that you have to skip out on all the good stuff. So, how about one of my favorite celebatory drinks?
The best thing about moctails is that they are basically grown up punch in a fancy glass. Who doesn't love feeling fancy?
Blood orange mimosa mock-tail
Ahhh....Christmas time. What a beautiful, loving time of year. A time of the year where family and friends come together and happily adorn one another with gifts of gratitude. The time of year where laughter fills the air and joy contagiously replaces the angst that you carried with you throughout the year.
The shopping malls are overflowing just as much as the muffin top sitting on my overly-tight-post-Thanksgiving jeans. Anxiously building up to the day and then it's over. Just like that.
All over, right about now-this very moment, there are mother's and children alike pulling their hair from the roots of their scalp.
It's a real thing. I don't care who you are: The happiest, jolliest- most spirited person or the person who secretly hates the holiday's; We all experience the Christmas hangover.
Maybe not. Correct me if I'm wrong. But, it's well alive in this house! My kid's- Thankful as they are- are in full melt down mode. Pre-Chrismtas we had many planned events, crafts, cooking for dinners, family gatherings, etc. and then....crash. It was all over and nothing to do. Yes, there are tons of brand new toys to play with. Kids will be kids. Right?
So, I came up with a plan.
CHRISTMAS hangover CURE:
Week-o-fun KID'S planner created by kids
What you need:
parents: Use the cardboard and list the day's of the week for the kid's to fill in.
*hint: before you tell the kid's what you are up to, plan ahead. Create a list of activities you would like for them to do or crafts they can do with things you already have on hand.
**double hint: Think old school. There are tons of simple crafts that kids have been creating for years that will never go out of style. Simplicity is key.
This seems like something so simple. Yet, it brings the family together, forces fun during a stressful time, and creates memories.
For my kid's they go into melt-down mode because they are used to schedules. School: schedules, Home: free-will; For my kids, they don't adjust well to that. With this calander, the kid's feel in control, look forward to fun events, and know when each event will be taking place.
What are you doing to combat post-holiday stress?
Peace, love, and fun!
Crayola Crayon kit (Christmas present)
Martha Stewart's Favorite Craft's for Kid's
Disclaimer: I am not affliated with any of the products or brands mentioned or shown in this article. I receive no benefits or compensation from use of the links or products in this article.
Christmas time comes with a fair share of hectic-ness; that's for sure! Holiday traditions should be smooth, simple, and ever-lasting.
One of our family traditons is salt-dough ornaments. Naturally, there comes a little disclamer. If you store your ornaments in an out building, little critters don't know the difference between your priceless orament from a snack. So, looks like we will be making new ornaments this year AND new location to store our ornaments.
Good thing these are so cost effective and easy to make.
"Are you serious? ANOTHER laundry detergent recipe?"
I know, right?
So, here goes the story...
I'm lazy. The end.
Okay, so maybe not LAZY, but I'm just so tired. Why didn't anyone warn us as kids that adulting would be so tiring. We have to know so many things. And then we have kids and constantly question whether we're doing it properly. And now in 2016 everywhere you look there's TOXIC this and TOXIC that. It's scary! So, I did the whole thing and played along and got bored. Real quick.
Back to the good ol' store purchased toxic-ide to wash my children's clothes in toxic death. Well, maybe that's a tad bit dramatic.
I don't know how much of any of the whole toxic nation stuff you can believe out there, but there's one thing I know: homemade is cheap. Among many, many other reasons I decided I'm going to go back and start making our own detergent again. Except, this time I'm not digging out a recipe. I'll do the good ol' a-little-of-this-and-a-little-of-that method. Why not?
Basically, you can just simply wash you clothes in a touch of Bonner's soap, so I can't really screw this up. Right?
So, let's keep things simple.
#1) Fels Naptha soap is a pain. Almost all recipes include it. Guess what? I left it out and haven't missed it. I see absolutely no difference.
#2 I can't stand the soap to get clumpy. It stops up my front loader and makes a mess.
#3 The K.I.S.S. method tends to trump all (and no that wasn't a political pun.)
So, here we go:
LAUNDRY DETERGENT RECIPE:
(See disclaimer below)
Could that be more simple? 1 cup of each, heat, stir into water. Stop over and visit my video on Youtube to see the simplicity of it all!
How about a little Q&A:
I don't like it so watery. Can I add less water? Yup! Absolutely. This can be any consistency you want. Thicker: less water: use less to wash.
Will my clothes be clean without the Fels Naptha? My husband rebuilds cars for a living- body work, mechanics, you name it. He comes in with some funky clothes. This detergent works on it all! I see no need to add it. However, if you need a spot treatment, the Fels Naptha is great to have on hand. Just use the bar to rub on the spot before washing.
Can I add scents or essential oils? I don't see why not. We don't because A) We have sensitive skin. B) essential oils are expensive. I feel like you get more bang for your buck by using them on your skin.
A friend of mine says, "using borax on a regular basis as a detergent corrodes the machine and does quite a bit of damage to it chemically (non visible components - opposite drum side, drive components, ect). That corrosion can then end up as particulates in the clothing." I'm definitely no expert! This is only what me and my family uses. Always use your best judgment or ask a professional. Also, you could just leave the BORAX out. It's only an extra cleanser that probably isn't necessary. The washing powder is a great deodorizer and the Castile soap is a fantastic cleanser!
More questions? E-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org or leave it in the comments.
Peace, love, and clean clothes...
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I've been dragging my family up an UP-HILL slipper slope. I'm trying to rid our home of known toxins and create a healthy lifestyle. As if life wasn't difficult enough, I decide to completely turn our lives upside down (or is it right-side up?) by throwing away every item in our beauty/hygiene arsenal and starting making everything on my own.
The longer I stay on this track, the easier it is. However, life is busy. With everything we have to do as moms, we have to worry about what's put in the products we use every single day? It's difficult!
But, you know what? It's not impossible. That's because there are already people out there that have been doing it far longer than we have. I used to make my own chapstick and lotions from scratch until I got lazy and stopped making it. Did you know you can buy a lip balm base completely read to use?! And it's priced well! You can easily use as-is or have some fun with it by adding scents, essential oils, additives, and even color!
Now, it's easy to get lost and start adding unnatural colors, but I stumbled upon the most amazing colorant and it costs under $1!!
Look how vibrant the color is!! Here's the best part: it's made from a can of beets. Yes, beets. Canned beets.
DIY all-natural Beet Balm:
*optional: add essential oils. My favorite? DoTerra's MOTIVATE (An uplifting citrus blend.)
Peace, love, health (and saving time AND money!)
Essential oils seem to be quite a fad these days.
But, hey, guess what. They aren't! Oils were the very first medicinal practice in the very beginnings of mankind. From the Egyptian hieroglyphics and Chinese manuscripts, we know that priests and physicians have been using essential oils for thousands of years. The Egyptians used essential oils for embalming and preserved oils were found in alabaster jars in King Tut's tomb. Egyptian temples were dedicated to the production and blending of the oils and recipes were recorded on the walls in hieroglyphics. And- of course- we're all familiar with the terms "frankincense and myrrh." There are 188 references to essential oils in the Bible. There were endless amounts of uses for essential oils since the beginning of time and the same uses are valid today. I guess you could say they are essential to our lives. (wink.)
Where does the term Essential come from?
Contrary to what I once thought, the term essential used here does not mean indispensable. An oil is "essential" in the sense that it contains the "essence of" the plant's fragrance—the characteristic fragrance of the plant from which it is derived. (Some incredible indepth information on the history of essential oils)
How do you use them?
First, and foremost, the absolute most important thing I can tell you is ALL ESSENTIAL OILS ARE NOT CREATED EQUALLY. You can not go to your local grocery store and buy quality essential oils (Even if they say 100% pure.) You'll notice some of the bottles have little warning labels; warning you against skin application. There are some warning you of combustion! This is crazy. These essential oils are for smelling only. The worst part is, you have no idea what's actually in those bottles. And the "100% pure essential oil" label you see is only telling you that the actual oil in that bottle is pure. We don't even know what other junk could be lurking inside that bottle.
So, back to the question.
There are numerous amounts of ways to use essential oils. It can be overwhelming and intimidating at first. I always recommend to start simple: Topical.
My first oil was a blend for headaches. I was constantly popping Ibuprofen for headaches. (side note, I haven't taken any for over a year since using essential oils!)
I would take this blend and rub anywhere I was feeling the headache- temples, behind ears, on my neck.
The more I use the oils, the more I learn, I now know that I can rub this oil in the center of my hands during a breathing technique to zap the worst headaches, including migraines. There is so much to learn and it's easy to get overwhelmed and just walk away from it altogether. Just start simple and you can learn the rest later. (more indepth information on essential oil applications. )
Why use them?
I am sick and tired of being sick and tired. The older I get the more I look around and see the deterioration of people. I've always been the type of person that is drawn in and amazed by the abilities of the human body. Researching cause and effects of sicknesses, what nourishes us, what keeps us well and what brings us down, the in's and out's of our anatomy, and the beauty of what God has provided us with nutrition and alternative medicine. Somewhere along the line I lost the knowledge of health. Lifestyles change, influences change, and I got lazy. In the last few years I was at my worst: My weight was at an all-time high, my blood pressure is uncontrollable and within the levels of having a stroke, my bones ache, constant headaches, and would catch any thing coming or going. I don't have any obviously sickness, yet my body is sick.
I go to doctor after doctor and they don't have any real obvious symptoms to treat; except that I feel crummy. They write me antibiotic after antibiotic, steroids, numerous blood pressure medicine, anxiety medicine... Rx after Rx I found I needed more Rx's to treat the symptoms of the first. I was fed up. I threw everything I had in the trash, sat down at my computer, and dove back into what interested me the most: medicinal practices of those before us. Things that don't come with warning labels: a lifestyle of those generations back.
Do they work?
You don't have to just listen to me; There are testimonies of people that date back to 3000 BCE and before of people praising the effectiveness of essential oils.
For me, I've only been using essential oils for a little over a year. In the beginning I was skeptical. I continued using Doterra oils, mainly because someone said "just try it!" They gave me some samples, so I continued to use them for headaches, keeping calm, allergies, and cleaning. With each application and the more I learned, I began using them more and more. It wasn't until a year passed I realized I hadn't taken one Ibuprofen for headaches. It literally was a full year before I realized they worked! It was then I started buying them for myself and my family and using more of them, for different things. My husband replaced his daily steroid nose spray with Breathe*. We are no longer visiting the doctor every few weeks for my children because of On guard* We no longer buy cleaning agents because of Lemon, Lavender, and On guard*
What should I try first?
Ask yourself: What is my number one need? Relaxation...headaches....calm wild kids....first aid...DIY cleaning supplies...
Start with one thing. Just one.
Now that you have that in your head, drop me and e-mail (email@example.com) and I will point you in the right direction. I usually reply to my e-mails within 24 hours (if not sooner) and we will get you on the road to using essential oils!
Any more questions? E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or find me on Fb, Instagram, or Google+ @shoestringAmy
Want to learn more? click here
Want to jump right in and start buying? click here
Want to sell Doterra oils? click here
Love, peace, and good health...
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Shoestring Amy is a free-spirited momma. With a family of five comes an active lifestyle full of energy. Amy strives for a lifetime of fun, laughter, and memories. Rather than smothering in debt, working for "things," and walking the same ol' line of misery created by a dead end job, she creates much larger goals. CONTINUE READING....
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