Wednesday, September 15, 2021

Daydreaming at Home ~ Snippets

Sometimes I daydream as I make my home. I’d like to think Louisa May might have tidied up and scrubbed the floor as I have, or Ma might have baked a few batches of bread that wasn’t quite perfect as I’ve done or that Mrs. Tittlemouse might have had a little cabinet just like this... with dried chilies dancing merrily above a shelf of filled mason jars.

The world may feel weird right now but home is still what you make of it.

๐ŸŒถ ๐Ÿงบ ๐Ÿ…

“...aspire to lead a quiet life, to mind your own business, and to work with your own hands, as we commanded you, that you may walk properly toward those who are outside, and that you may lack nothing.”

~ 1 Thessalonians 4:11-12

Thursday, September 9, 2021

DIY Prairie Candles & The Seasons of Homemaking


In answer to “will you be going to work now that you’ve finished homeschooling your family and/or what will you do all day?”

This kind of stuff sometimes... 

the projects you always wanted to try but never had the time. Now is the time. 

That is the beauty of homemaking, there are so many enchanting seasons.

To begin, I prepared a make shift double boiler with a large coffee can.  This bypasses excess clean up as you can dispose of the waxy can afterwards with no remorse and zero extra work. Just add a few inches of water into a sauce pan and place your clean can inside. Add the wax of choice to the can and slowly melt it down (and you have a makeshift double boiler)! I would recommend using either beeswax pellets or soy wax pellets as they are both clean burning (aka non-toxic). Beeswax would be ideal as it has its own clean scent! However, it is quite expensive. I used the remaining soy wax from the last project making herbal wax sachets for these candles. (Some of the links in this post may be affiliate links meaning I earn a small percentage from any purchases).

It begins in your birth home, making your bedroom the place of your dreams ✨ 

As you age, you begin suggesting changes in the entire home (and mother smiles knowing you yearn for a nest of your own).

Finally, you arrive at the doorstep of said domain and desire to make it cozy and comfy for you and dear husband.

To make the "prairie candle" pretty, using a hot glue gun, glue a few dried flowers and leaves to the side of the chosen vessel. I used roses, calendula and the hydrangea and eucalyptus leaves I had dried myself. There is no rhyme or reason, the rustic look is completely acceptable here. I didn't put too much as I wasn't sure of the outcome once the candle started burning. Plus, I didn't want them to become a fire hazard. (Also, it would be wise to line the counter with newspaper or paper bags to make clean up convenient.) Edited to add - See fire hazard warning in comments. 

And then it begins to feel empty and you yearn to fill it with chubby little faces.

If God grants you that desire, the home becomes a training ground for the future Christian generation. It is a time of hard work, physically challenging while mentally challenging your patience and nerves (giving you growth). 
For some, the home education process begins and feels like it will last forever. You are tempted to rush through thinking it will never end and at the same time so sad knowing it someday will. 

Next, using a hot glue gun, glue the candle wick in place (centered). My candle wicks came with the bulk soy wax but you can purchase them separately. 

But please don’t hurry.

Because one day, it’s all over! 

Just like that! And here you are, making little prairie candles all by yourself.

Once the wick is in place, use a clothespin to frugally center your wick. They also sell fancy candle apparatus for this but my kit only came with two so I resorted to the handy clothespin for help. 

The rush won’t change the movement of time but it may affect the family memories.

I encourage you to slowly enjoy each season of womanhood. For the day will come when you will have the time and when you see those sweet young “struggling” families (like yours may feel like right now) and you will miss it!

In the meantime dear homemaker, let’s continue to create beauty in all our different stages.

Once my wax was melted down, I removed it from the double boiler and added in about 1/3 of it's volume in coconut oil. I was trying to stretch the candles a bit further. And once it was a bit cooler, I added in some essential oil for scent (I used some inexpensive ones I found on clearance). There is a science to this (ratio) but I'm not much of a scientist so I dumped in what I thought was adequate and called it a day. But if you'd like to be more "professional", you can research the ratio on candle making websites. 

For me (an almost empty nester), it may include creative homemaking projects, visiting/helping a new mother, administering to the sick, spending time with aging parents, learning new skills, getting more involved in the church, etc.

Once the candle cools, you can trim the wick down to 1/4" and they are finished. 

And while doing these things, our adult children see the variety and industry of home life and will carry beautiful feelings of home in their heart and into the homes they will one day have of their own.

As far as the containers go, I used a set of six thrifted etched glasses in the pictures above as I loved the look of them. Unfortunately the etch-work didn't show through that well. 

You can also use recycled jars which I did for the rest of them (see picture above) or recycled tin cans from canned goods (you can wallpaper the can with pretty paper after) or you can also use random tea-cups and so forth. The options are limitless. I can't wait to burn them come autumn and winter!

But remember, never leave candles unattended while burning... ๐Ÿ”ฅ 

In these ways, the homemaker is never obsolete. She is valuable in every season. I will be a keeper at home forever.