Thursday, January 26, 2012

Coffee addict!

One of the worst things that can happen to a coffee drinker, happened to me this morning. I ran out of my favorite flavored creamer. It's a seasonal item, so buying more isn't an option.

Luckily for me, I keep the powdered non-flavored stuff on hand. My MIL uses it, since she doesn't like flavored coffee. I thought I'd try my hand at making my own version of my favorite, peppermint mocha.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Clean your lint trap!

Yesterday, I was sitting around looking at my notebook of homemade recipes. For those that don't know, I'm compiling them into a book to give as a gift this year to all the women in my family. They are recipes that I've shared here, found on the web, or been told as I've grown. They are all recipes that I've personally tried myself, so I know that they work.

While working on this, I've also come across some great tips and tricks. I thought I'd share a few of those with you today.

Friday, January 20, 2012

Quilting is good for the soul!

I've been meaning to make a black and white quilt for quite some time now. I have a bunch of fabrics that coordinate very well, I just couldn't find a pattern I liked. So, I googled. And, I stumbled upon this GORGEOUS quilt from this blog:

This quilt is so pretty, I can't wait to get started on it. She was kind enough to include a link to the pattern, it's called the Papillon Jardin by Nancy Mahoney. You can find the pattern for free, here.

Since I will be making a small one for my daughters, I'm going to include some pink in there as well. The fabrics I'll be using are these:

I can't wait to get started!!

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Homemade Shower Soothers/Bath Bombs

Cold season is in full force in my household. 3 out of the 4 of us have one. It stinks big time! So, instead of running out and buying shower soothers, I decided to make my own. They are easy to make, and the ingredients are easy to find.

For those that don't know what shower soothers are, this is what I'm talking about:

You put them in the bottom of your shower, and they melt and release vapors while you shower. I love them. 

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Green dishes

As the new year wears on, and the weather going from rain to snow to sun and back, I've found myself doing a lot of cooking/baking lately. With this, comes dishes. I hate dishes. I take that back. I hate washing dishes. So, admittedly, I use the dishwasher. I know, for shame.

In my quest to use more natural products around my home, I decided to look for an alternative to my Cascade packets. And, I found one that I love. It gets my dishes just as clean, and helps to keep my dishwasher clean as well.
The recipe is simple, you'll need 4 ingredients.

2 parts washing soda
2 parts borax
1 part citric acid
1 part coarse sea salt

That's it. Mix it all in a jar, and store under your sink. Fill up the detergent cup, and use vinegar in the rinse cup.

I've been asked a lot about where to find these ingredients. I live in a fairly good sized town, so I have a lot of stores readily available to me. I buy my borax, washing soda, and sea salt at my local chain grocery store. Sometimes I can find citric acid there as well (in the spice aisle) but often times, I have to go to my local whole foods store to find it. They sell it in bulk there, so I can buy exactly the amount I need. I use citric acid in a few different things (like bath bombs.)

This week's new recipe was porkchops in a cream sauce with mushrooms. All done in the slow cooker. It was delish!

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Burlap Wreaths - All the rage!

Those of you who have friended me on facebook may remember my fall wreath. For those that don't have me as a friend (Shame on you! Just kidding!) this is the wreath I'm talking about:

It was made from burlap, which I bought in a natural color, and painted to my liking. Each color is just a square of burlap, folded and pinned to the wreath. Looking back, hot glue would have been better! I think this was somewhere in the range of 100+ 5" squares.

Friday, January 13, 2012

Friday Fun

I just wanted to post a quick update on the soup I made the other night. It was AMAZING!

Even my picky eater loved it, and said, "Mom, you make the best dinners!" My 16 month old ate 2 small helpings of it. I recommend it to anyone looking for something a bit different. It was filling, and great for a cold day.

In the spirit of trying new things, I recently made a small set of gel air fresheners, using a recipe I found on If you haven't visited that site, do so. It's an amazing resource for all of us DIY'ers.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

New year, new goals

I'm not one to set resolutions. I find them pointless, frustrating, and often times, I give up on them before the end of January.

So, this year, I've decided to set goals for myself. Wait, not really goals either, just more guidelines.

This year, I'm going to try to use more home remedies. And, I'm going to make them into a book for family and friends. I will only include the remedies that I've personally used and had success with. I want fewer chemicals in my house, and more homemade stuff.

I'm also going to try and cook from scratch a lot more. Bye bye convenient food, which has been clogging up my cabinets lately due to life getting busy. I miss cooking homemade food for my family, so I'm getting back to that. I want to try one new recipe a week. This week, it's Chicken Tortilla Soup.

I want to get back to crafting more as well. With all of life's stresses, and how mundane it can be as a stay at home mom, I want the joy of crafting back in my life.

I also want to blog more. I plan on making myself write one post a week. I use to journal all the time, and I miss that as well. I find that I cope better, if I can let things out.

So, that's my year ahead.

Anyone have any goals they want to share?