Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Make Your Own "Almond Joy" Body Scrub ~ All Natural DIY


This body scrub will certainly bring *joy* into your next shower! The dried coconut flakes will gently exfoliate your skin leaving it nice and soft. The delicious aroma will leave you smelling sweetly and lovely. Unfortunately, it may also leave you with a dessert craving and for this I do apologize :)

Simply mix together these ingredients from the pantry:
  • 1/4 c. coconut oil
  • 1/4 c. almond oil
  • 1 c. sugar
  • 2 - 3 tbsp dried shredded coconut (unsweetened kind)
  • 1 - 2 tsp. vanilla extract (depending on how strong you want it)

If the mixture is too dry, add a little more oil. If it is too oily, add more sugar until you reach the desired consistency.



This recipe should fill approximately (2) 4 oz. jelly jars or (1) 8 oz. jar. Though I personally prefer the look of glass, I will add that plastic is a safer choice for a container in the shower and/or tub.


Directions: In the shower, massage a small handful of scrub all over wet skin (avoiding sensitive areas, concentrating on dry ones), rinse off and pat dry. Don't wipe away the oil feeling since this will keep you moisturized without applying lotion. Suggested use is once a week. Not recommended for your face. (Caution: Shower tub or floor may become slippery with use of this product.)


Below is a printable recipe and set of two labels which you may like to use or even add to your herbal. Simply download from the menu below, save and print. If you have any problems with printing, feel free to send me an email and I can send you the PDF file.


To give as a gift, simply tie with a ribbon, raffia or twine. This is certain to bring some *joy* to the recipient {though not as much as what has already been given}...

"And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord. And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger."

Monday, December 15, 2014

The Art of Home-Making Mondays ~ Please Join Us ~ Link Up #31

"There is little virtue in the beauty which calls attention to itself;
modest beauty is the last to extol its own charms."
~ Charles Spurgeon
There are so many wonderful features in the making of a home. This is a place where I would love for you to share your love for anything home-related. Homemaking, homeschooling and homesteading are all a part of the lovely art of home-making!

~~Please link up posts in the spirit of Titus 2 and Proverbs 31 (such as recipes, godly encouragement, DIY's, frugal living, child-raising, medicine making, preparedness, gardening, home decoration, school lessons, etc).~~ You are welcome to share as many posts as you like!

* Today we are featuring five of my favorites from Last Week's Link Up *

{I would love for you to choose at least one of these hand-picked posts and leave some comment love!}


These dark chocolate and caramel turtles really caught my eye as my sweet tooth is something fierce right now! If you also suffer from chocohalism, I encourage you to take a peak at Turtle Time in Tennessee by Foothills of the Great Smoky Mountains.


For the frugal minded woman, here is an excellent series on Saving on Groceries. Ashley at Grow Pray Build has shared three parts so far and I have enjoyed reading her ideas. 


Now, back to that demanding sweet tooth. These Must-Make Cracker Roca's also got my attention. Visit Heather at My Overflowing Cup for the easy tutorial!


Kathy at Cornerstone Confessions shares links to 100+ Places You Can Find Free Planner Printables for 2015. This will really be a blessing to women who are looking to get more organized in the new year! 


And finally, Laura at The Merry Mennonite shares some encouragement for mothers on Failing (and Succeeding) as a Mom. We all have our rough days and I am now reconsidering how I look at mine!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

On to this week! For the sake of our readers, please link up appropriate and wholesome home-related articles and leave out any giveaways, advertisements, etc. Thank you for understanding! I can't wait to see what you all have to share! 

Please copy the button below (html code is in box below it) and share on your blog post or side-bar so others can come and join in the link up as well!


Strangers and Pilgrims on Earth


Wednesday, December 10, 2014

"Winter Blues" In the Laundry Room ~ Little Homemaking Touches

“The point is, bring joy to your surroundings.” 

In the colder months, there is more mud, darkness and dreariness on our farm. We do not get snow but will get plenty of rain. For this reason, I like to refresh our laundry room with little touches of love. While many are on the move at the malls, this mama bear is hibernating. In the winter, we spend all of our time inside the home and it is prudent to keep it cozy and inviting. 


The first thing I did was to create some happy laundry room labels. We had some basic labels before but I wanted something a bit more perkier and polka dots certainly fit the bill! We are sharing our printable at the bottom of the post if you would like some.


I also prepared a large batch of natural fabric softeners in four different scents. It is fun to have an array to choose from depending on the laundry you are doing. I generally use lavender for our clothing and bedding, lemon for our kitchen linens and eucalyptus and orange for any pet related wash.


You will find more details, the how to, and some labels in this post if you are interested in making your own. I placed each "flavor" inside old recycled bottles and added corks for extra flair. It does lend to laundry room fun (though my husband just shakes his head at these types of things)!


I have also found an indoor retractable line that I am going to put to use since I sold my dryer a few summers back (very crazy daring, I know). If this works out, I will purchase a few more as they are only 8 feet long. I like it because it is enamel (and not yucky plastic) and seems to be sturdy. We shall see!


And now for a bit of my homemaking history... This random quilted runner began the "blues" in our laundry room. It was purchased for a dollar at a little garage sale. It is always an exciting challenge to decorate a room on a budget. The hunt is a blast and bargains are the best! Little by little I was able to round up some blue touches to create our little wash area for under $20. To have a "Look Inside Our Laundry Room", visit here. {Just keep in mind that I have since changed the labels to the polka dot rose ones featured above.}




                                  


Monday, December 8, 2014

The Art of Home-Making Mondays ~ Please Join Us ~ Link Up #30

“Winter is the time for comfort, for good food and warmth,
for the touch of a friendly hand and for a talk beside the fire:
it is the time for home.”
~ Edith Sitwell
There are so many wonderful features in the making of a home. This is a place where I would love for you to share your love for anything home-related. Homemaking, homeschooling and homesteading are all a part of the lovely art of home-making!

~~Please link up posts in the spirit of Titus 2 and Proverbs 31 (such as recipes, godly encouragement, DIY's, frugal living, child-raising, medicine making, preparedness, gardening, home decoration, school lessons, etc).~~ You are welcome to share as many posts as you like!

{I apologize if I haven't been able to do much visiting on your blogs recently, we had spent the month visiting with out-of town family and it was absolutely precious!}

* Today we are sharing the 3 Most Viewed Posts from Last Week's Link Up *


#1 Most Viewed: Living the Cottage Dream by Nancy at A Joyful Cottage

#2 Most Viewed:  Giving 100% by Jody at A Spice of Life

#3 Most Viewed: 10 Ways to Add Amish Values to Your Life by Tracy at Our Simple Homestead

On to this week! For the sake of our readers, please link up appropriate and wholesome home-related articles and leave out any giveaways, advertisements, etc. Thank you for understanding! I can't wait to see what you all have to share! 

Please copy the button below (html code is in box below it) and share on your blog post or side-bar so others can come and join in the link up as well!


Strangers and Pilgrims on Earth

Saturday, December 6, 2014

Weekly Menu Planner ~ Free Printable (And Why I Don't Use One)


To be honest, I am not a weekly-menu-planner-type-of-gal. My goal each week is to use what we have growing at the time, what I find in my pantry, what is fermenting in jars and what has been preserved in the freezer or canned in prior months. With these resources I am able to prepare a meal inexpensively for my family without taking too much time (the time had already been spent in the preservation process). This means that in the winter and autumn months, we don't eat foods like fresh tomatoes or anything else that isn't grown in the cold seasons or is already preserved.


Before it sounds too "out there", I will explain. When thinking of meals, I don't wonder what I "need" to make dinner, I wonder what I can "use" to make dinner.  For example, in the winter our tacos would have toppings such as cheese (that was purchased in bulk, shredded and frozen in smaller increments) canned salsa, cabbage salad (or sauerkraut) and guacamole (our avocados are ripe in winter). In the summer, the toppings would consist of shredded cheese, fresh garden lettuce, tomatoes and onions. In another instance, it wouldn't do me good to plan for burritos on Thursday and then have my husband bring in a bucket of zucchini that same day. I need to use up that squash and fast! So you see, I need to do some creative adjusting to make our meals coincide with our seasons and our surpluses. Hence, I don't meal plan (I meal "scan").


However, I find that when overnight guests come, I do need to meal plan and I do spend a bit on the extras (like those out of season foods) in order to make some special dishes. Lately, we have been having a lot of extra company and so I created a menu planner printable to get me through this busy time.  I also included a grocery list at the bottom of our planner which can be conveniently clipped off and taken to town once our menu is prepared and the inventory has been ascertained.


I store our planner inside our Home Management Binder which I have begun to appreciate more and more. It works well in our "weekly" section. You are welcome to use our menu planner, simply download from the link below and print (please let me know if you have problems printing and I can email you a PDF file).





Something helpful which I have also adopted is what the author of Healthy Foods shared. It is called the "Ten O'Clock Principle" (which she in turn learned from her friend Demaris Ford).

"The Ten O'clock Principle is simply that you decide on your dinner each night by 10:00 that morning. However, if you know that Wednesday, for example, is always very busy, then you decide on dinner for Wednesday night on Tuesday night at 10:00 PM. The Ten O'Clock Principle is the same, you just move it around (AM or PM) accordingly. That way, you can prepare! Like take something out of the freezer to thaw, plug something into the indentured servant (crock pot) or check to make sure you have charcoal for the barbecue."
Healthy Foods by Leanne Ely, C.N.C.

The author also gives the idea to have a basic meal plan each week that you follow like spaghetti on Monday, a meal with beans on Tuesday, salad on Wednesday, chicken on Thursday and so forth. That would be an option for some women who don't need to utilize what a farm provides. The only thing that is pretty much certain in our home is that Friday night is pizza night :)

Do you plan menus for the week? What are your thoughts on meal planning? Happy homemaking ladies and embrace your daily duties! Your efforts in every area of homemaking are forming childhood memories that will last forever in the hearts of your family and will continue to sweeten the heart of your husband.

"It belittles us to think of our daily tasks as small things,
and if we continue to do so, it will in time make us small."
~ Laura Ingalls Wilder
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