Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Make Your Own Lavender Water ~ Room, Linen and Ironing Spray


"She has nevertheless desired me to ask you to purchase for her two bottles of Steele's Lavender Water when you are in Town, provided you should go to the shop on your own account."
~ Letter from Jane Austen to her sister Cassandra, January 14, 1801

Tis true, another ode to the Regency and Victorian Era! This lavender water attempts to create a nostalgic and peaceful feeling in a homemaking day. Only one minute of your time can transport you back hundreds of years...


...when you would make linen spray to freshen up sheets and spritz on lacy pillowcases for a good night's sleep. It can also be used as a basic room spray to cleanse the air. My favorite use is as an ironing spray since it adds a romantic element to my least favorite chore (just be sure to test in an inconspicuous area for delicate fabrics first).


To make, simply combine the following ingredients in a clean glass jar or bottle (and in the order they appear):
  • 2 tbsp. vodka (you might also get away with using rubbing alcohol or witch-hazel)
  • 4 cups water (distilled is best but I use tap) 
Let the mixture sit for 24 hours before using and give a gentle shake prior to each use. For best results, store lavender water in a glass container as it doesn't leach from the oils like plastic does. Decant into smaller spray bottles as you need them.



"The scent of lavender came out and perfumed the room."
~ Elizabeth Gaskell, North & South


We are sharing our printable recipe and matching spray bottle labels (below). You may like to include this in your herbal for future reference. If you place a pretty ribbon or cork on a recycled bottle and affix a lovely label, it also makes for a beautiful and inexpensive decoration. Think how attractive it would look displayed in your bathroom or on a vanity tray in your bedroom. I think it would make for a nice gift too! Happy homemaking ladies! 


To access our printable directions and labels, simply click the menu link above which takes you to the document hosting service. Then, download and print the PDF file for FREE. You can either print the labels and directions out on plain paper, cut to size and affix to your containers with glue (or decoupage) or print them out on sticker paper and cut to size. If you have any problem accessing them, email me and I will send you the PDF file. I also invite you to subscribe to this blog (located on the sidebar) to get updates and access to future homemaking printables.

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A letter from the editress...

We are spending the summer with far away family right now so I will not be commenting or visiting much in these next few months. These posts were pre-scheduled. However, I would still love to hear from you in the comment section! Thank you for understanding and have a lovely summer in the northern hemisphere and winter in the south!

Love, JES :)

Monday, June 29, 2015

The Art of Home-Making Mondays ~ Please Join Us ~ Link Up #59


“Help one another is part of the religion of our sisterhood.”
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. Homemakinghomeschooling 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, sewing, crafts, etc).~~ You are welcome to share as many posts as you like!

* I am sorry, no features this week, we are visiting far away family *


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, June 24, 2015

Make Marinated Vegetables! ~ Our Favorite Sliced Summer Salad


“My garden is my most beautiful masterpiece.”
~ Claude Monet

Although Monet may disagree, to me a garden is a masterpiece when finally served on your seasonal menu! Easy to assemble and very versatile, this is our favorite way to prepare our summer harvest. 


Begin by washing, peeling (if necessary) and slicing all your fresh produce. Some ideas are cucumbers, tomatoes, bell peppers (the more colors the better!), carrots and onions (even if you don't like to eat raw onions, do include them for flavor). Some other fun additions to this salad would be whole olives or sliced Ortega chilies if your family likes them.



Next, place a layer of vegetables in your container and drizzle each layer with a bit of oil, vinegar and a sprinkling of seasoning salt.  We like to use olive oil and grape-seed oil (or a mix of both). For vinegars, we prefer red wine and balsamic but please use your favorite. Continue to layer and season your veggies until your container is nice and full. Then, place the lid on your sliced salad and give it a nice shake (or two) to infuse the oil, vinegar and seasonings (or toss with tongs if you don't have a lid).


Let your sliced salad marinate in the refrigerator for at least a few hours. The more time the merrier! I also give it a gentle shake or toss every hour or so (when I remember) to infuse the flavors even more. We like to make a batch in the morning and serve it in the evening. You can even prepare this the day before. It will last all week so feel free to prepare a large batch (or make a few containers worth and take where-ever you go). Prior to serving, test a few pieces to make sure there is enough seasoning, if not, add a bit more seasoning salt and give it one last toss.



I hope your family enjoys these marinated vegetables as much as ours! It is wonderful for all your summertime festivities! It is our go-to food for picnics and BBQ's and anywhere else our travels take us! 

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
A letter from the editress...

We are spending the summer with far away family right now so I will not be commenting or visiting much in these next few months. These posts were pre-scheduled. However, I would still love to hear from you in the comment section! Thank you for understanding and have a lovely summer in the northern hemisphere and winter in the south!

Love, JES :)

Monday, June 22, 2015

The Art of Home-Making Mondays ~ Please Join Us ~ Link Up #58

“Learn to do common things uncommonly well; we must always keep in mind that anything that helps full the dinner pail is valuable.

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. Homemakinghomeschooling 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, sewing, crafts, etc).~~ You are welcome to share as many posts as you like!

* I am sorry, no features this week, we are visiting far away family *


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, June 17, 2015

The Blessings of Old Fashioned Work ~ Part Four

“If this country is ever demoralized,
it will come from trying to live without work.” 
~ Abraham Lincoln

Besides the brilliant sense of accomplishment, healthy lifestyle of physical activity and the sweetness of $avings, there is something morally and spiritually strengthening when involving oneself in old fashioned labor. It is the blessed business that keeps you out of everyone else's business.


"A life of full and constant employment is the only safe and happy one. If we suffer the mind and body to be unemployed, our enjoyments, as well as our labors, will be terminated. One of the minor uses of steady employment is, that it keeps one out of mischief; for truly an idle brain is the devil's workshop, and a lazy many the devil's bolster. To be occupied is to be possessed as by a tenant, whereas to be idle is to be empty; and when the doors of the imagination are opened, temptation finds a ready access, and evil thoughts come trooping in. It is observed at sea that men are never so much disposed to grumble and mutiny as when least employed. Hence an old captain, when there was nothing else to do, would issue the order to "scour the anchor."'


As the saying goes, "idle hands are the devil's workshop". How many busybodies would be unemployed the minute they were introduced to some old fashioned work and its blessed cousin called "industry"? At the end of day, they (or we) would be too exhausted to cause any mischief! 


"For even when we were with you, this we commanded you, that if any would not work, neither should he eat. For we hear that there are some which walk among you disorderly, working not at all, but are busybodies. Now them that are such we command and exhort by our Lord Jesus Christ, that with quietness they work, and eat their own bread."
~2 Thessalonians 3:10-12


Perhaps one reason that God created work for Adam and Eve, was to simply keep them out of trouble. Many of us may say we are very busy, too busy, in fact. But I do suggest that though we may be "busy", we are not being "industrious". Perhaps we are busy checking our emails, updating our social media accounts and chit-chatting on the phone. Although there is nothing wrong with any of these, when it is not mixed in with a goodly dose of work, one can slip and fall into the world of gossip, idleness and meddling.


The wholesome lifestyle of old fashioned labor keeps you productive, a blessing to your family and is even a testimony to your faith.

"And withal they learn to be idle, wandering about from house to house; and not only idle, but tattlers also and busybodies, speaking things which they ought not. I will therefore that the younger women marry, bear children, guide the house, give none occasion to the adversary to speak reproachfully."
~ 1 Timothy 5:13-14


Ladies, let us keep ourselves "busy" with the good things in life, real "old fashioned labor" that produces tangible and blessed, beautiful fruit! Raising our children, feeding our minds with useful information, stocking our pantries, maintaining gardens, serving those in need, creative handiwork and so forth. These are the things which God smiles upon! It will transform you into a Titus-2 testimony. Old fashioned work, combined with a healthy dose of the "fear of the Lord", is what made the Proverbs 31 woman shine. And it will make you radiate, like a precious gem, to all who exist in your little world too!

"Who can find a virtuous woman? for her price is far above rubies.
She looketh well to the ways of her household,
and eateth not the bread of idleness."
~ Proverbs 31:10, 27


{See part one here, part two here and part three here of this series.}

{Note: All these beautiful and nostalgic paintings were created by the talented Benjamin Wu.



~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
A letter from the editress...


We are spending the summer with far away family right now so I will not be commenting or visiting much in these next few months. These posts were pre-scheduled. However, I would still love to hear from you in the comment section! Thank you for understanding and have a lovely summer in the northern hemisphere and winter in the south!

Love, JES :)
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