Friday, October 19, 2012

Cleaning products basics

I decided I was going to makeover my cleaning supplies bag (Organizing Utility Tote). I decided to do this because a) I have the best essential oils at my disposal and would like to get the most out of them and, b) my son has a fascination with the cabinet that mommy says "no!" to every time he opens it. For this tutorial you will be able to have a soft scrub, toilet bowl cleaner, window cleaner,  all-purpose spray and floor cleaner with less than 5-6 ingredients, all of which are very affordable.

What you need:
Baking soda
liquid castile soap

Essential Oils Wild Orange, On Guard, Melaleuca, Lemon, eucalyptus (optional), peppermint (optional), Lavender (optional)

Soft Scrub for Bath, Tile, and Toilet
Make in small batches for 2-4 uses. Store in an airtight container

3/4 rounded cup of baking soda
1/4 cup castile soap
1T water
1T vinegar
5-10 drops of Lemon essential oil

In a bowl, combine the baking soda and castile soap. Add water and stir. Finally, add the vinegar. Consistency should be a soft paste. Stir in essential oil.

Toilet Bowl Cleaner
 This recipe is designed for a single use to be added directly to a half empty toilet bowl.

1/2 baking soda
10 drops of Melaleuca oil
1/4 vinegar

As it reacts scrub the toilet.

Window Cleaner

1/8 cup Vinegar
1 cup of water
10-15 drops of lemon essential oil

Mix ingredients in a spray bottle. Shake. Spray and wipe clean.

All Purpose Spray cleaner

1/4 cup of vinegar
2 cups water
30 drops of Essential oils (see below)
1 tsp borax

  • 15 drops each of Lavender and Lemon oil
  • 10 drops each of eucalyptus, peppermint, and wild orange
  • 30 drops of On Guard

Other options are also available

Add all ingredients to a spray bottle and shake well to mix thoroughly.

Floor Cleaner
1 gallon hot water
2 T castile soap
15 drops Wild Orange
8 drops Lemon

In a large bucket, mix all ingredients. Use a mop to clean floors. Rinsing is optional.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Holiday Shopping is in full swing!

Here are a few great gift ideas ala Thirty One.

 Here's a great offer because the October special features the Super Organizing Tote-pictured here in Organic Poppy. Purchase the Timeless beauty bag (pictured in Black Pick Me Plaid with personalization), and a small zipper pouch (pictured in Natural w/Grey personalized with Lil Expressions) and get the Super Organizing Tote for 50% off !! Total cost of this traveler bundle $76 (before tax and shipping costs). Saving you $25
 Or this is great for just about anyone our Elite Retro Metro tote (in brown corduroy and personalized) paired with a Retro Metro wallet (in denim) with a nail file (in plum stripe). Add a small zipper pouch to bring along your chapstick or makeup and qualify to get the Elite Retro Metro 50% off. Total cost of this giftable bundle $69 (before tax and shipping costs)! Saving you $30
 Retro Metro Tote (pictured in grey pin dots and personalized) is also part of the October special and is paired with our silk scarf (in lavender pick me plaid). Add a Fold and Go Organizer to keep your shopping list handy to get the Retro Metro Tote half-off! Total cost of this giftable bundle $66 (before tax and shipping costs) Saving you $31

Other Great Gift Ideas and Stocking Stuffers

Cosmetic Bag in Purple Patchwork Paisley, add a nail file, and flat iron case for a Beauty Bundle Gift Set

 Great Teacher Gifts! Littles Carry All, Zipper Pouch (also comes thermal lined), and Mini Utility Bin. Pack them with treats, GC, or supplies for a great Holiday gift!
 No one better forget Grandma! What do Grandmas do BEST? Brag on their grandbabies. With the Lil Expressions on the Natural with Grey or Brown you can customize Grandma's grandbabies for a fabulous gift that she's sure to love! Lil Expressions is the same cost as our personalization with flat fee of $7!
Great Stocking stuffer ideas are: Thirty One Shuffle, Icon coin purse, mini (thermal) zipper pouch, double pinch top coin purse, soft wallet plus many other great ideas.
Get your friends together for a party to shop and socialize and get some gifts for free and get yourself a free or discounted gift for yourself!

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Gluten-Free Flour mix

I have been toying with the idea of our family going completely wheat free and essentially gluten free. My DH has many dietary restrictions and over the last year it has been costly to try to only have him live this way. Not to say that it isn't costly as it is. The biggest food expense that DH has is bread with his lunches during the week and it's not even wheat free. So I have been researching gluten-free recipes and ran across She has many great recipes on her site and I intend to check out more of them but for now I'm trying out her Gluten Free Flour Mix. I made a large mixture to have on hand. So here it goes
 You will need Rice Flour. I don't think it really matters whether it is brown or white rice but brown rice is better for you. I happened to pick up white this time around. You will also need Tapioca flour and Potato Starch. I'm fortunate to have a Wegman's so these things weren't too hard to come by at more affordable prices. Although the potato starch was sold out for two weeks I finally snagged some. I will be ordering this on my Amazon Subscribe and Save from now on.
 So here it all is: I found my entire sack of rice flour was about 4 cups so I doubled the small recipe available.
  • 4 Cups White Rice Flour
  • 2/3 cups Tapioca flour
  • 1-1/3 cup Potato Starch (make sure this isn't Potato flour)
So for about $12 I have a flour mixture that is gluten free. I will be able to get plenty of more usage out of the left over tapioca flour and the potato starch for future batches- probably about 3 more of this size batch.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

$225 Thirty One shopping spree!!

Hey there! I am going to be raffling off  a $225 Thirty One shopping spree! This will run like a 50/50 raffle, $200 will go towards the shopping spree and then you will also have the hostess rewards that include $25 in product credit, one item half off, and one Hostess Exclusive item. This will benefit the American Heart Association so $300 will be donated to the AHA.

Thirty One Gives partnered with The American Heart Association to help raise awareness of heart disease. Heart disease is the leading cause of death in women and is so high that the numbers for the next 3 top killers combined don't equate. What most people don't know is that 80% of cardiac events can be prevented with a healthy lifestyle. If you would like more information on a heart healthy lifestyle visit .

Here's what you do to win

1. You choose your numbers. If the number is highlighted then the number has already been selected by someone. 

2. The cost per number is $5. You will need to submit payment via the Paypal Donate Button

3. When all the boxes have been completed then I will submit the numbers to Rafflecopter and choose a winner.  The winner will be notified by email with the address which they used to pay for the box. I will also announce the winner on the blog to ensure that they are notified!



The photo above for the 50/50 raffle has been approved by Thirty-One Gifts CAGS Dept. This raffle is being conducted by an independent consultant. For any questions or concerns please contact the consultant at

Friday, May 11, 2012

DIY Sanitizing Wipes

I ran out of sanitizing wipes the other day and I refused to pay money for something I could make with the things I already had in my home. So here's the tutorial on making your own wipes. Essential oils can be purchased from me via my website

What You'll Need:
2 cups of warm water
1 roll of premium paper towels
2 tbsp of fractionated coconut oil
3-6 drops of On Guard essential oil blend
3-6 drops of Lemon essential oil
1/2-1 Tbsp of Liquid castile soap
container for your wipes.
serrated edge knife and cutting board

First things first you want to cut the paper towels in half width wise. Remove the cardboard center. Plunk your wipes down in your container. I reused the container that I had from my retail wipes. In a large measuring cup, measure out your warm water. Pour your other ingredients into the water. Then give it a good stir with a whisk. Then you're going to pour your soap mixture over your paper towels in the container. Pull your wipes up through the center and Voila! DIY sanitizing wipes. These wipes are actually better for your household than commercial wipes. They are environmentally healthy. They're all natural ingredients. They are kid friendly and pet friendly.

On Guard essential oil blend contains: Wild Orange, Clove bud, Cinnamon, Eucalyptus and Rosemary essential oils. Lemon Oil. Below is a chart to show what properties these oils have in disinfecting your home, body and life.
Information collected from doTERRA Living Magazine.

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Personal Training for me!

I had a very dear friend move away and she gave me her last 7or 8 personal training sessions that were already paid for! I have always wanted to try out personal training but there's no room for it in our budget. So, I plan to put them to good use. I met with my trainer Shane yesterday morning to get a game plan. Let him know about my obstacles and my goals. He asked for my "Why". It's not often I've heard this term used out of my business environment. I think I through him through a loop though. He said most people just give a typical generic answer of "I want to be healthy and live a long time."  While yes this is my answer there's more detail to it. I have Lupus. Every day for me is different and certain obstacles may be more apparent one day to the next. When I was first diagnosed with Lupus I was in the middle of a flare. I couldn't stand on my own feet without so much pain that I thought I might crumple to the ground. My right hand has some damage to it so from time to time I can't hold a pen much less a weight. Anyhow, my "why" comes down to this. I want to be slim and trim like I once was. I really don't care about number and dress sizes but I want to be comfortable in my own skin.  I am working to get myself off my meds so I don't have to rely on a doctor or pharmacy to make sure I'm comfortable. So with the help and knowledge of my boss and Health Coach, my personal trainer and myself and the support from friends and family I will achieve this goal. It is a very real possibility that if I don't do something about this now then come 10 years from now I won't be able to walk without help. I'm not willing to be in that position. So I'm going to periodically post about my progress from here on out!  Another friend of mine has made a similar goal and she created a motivational board. A picture before and current and all the reasons she wants to change her lifestyle. She inspired me with this idea and I think I'm going to do something similar.

Radio Silence is over

Sorry about the radio silence. My computer's operating system crashed over the weekend and writing a blog post on my phone is just not possible for me. So to catch up I have several posts I'm going to be writing and posting over the next few days. Stay tuned!

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Thirty One Mother's Day Gift Ideas

Mother’s Day is right around the corner! Nothing tells her how much she’s appreciated than a special gift from Thirty-One!  Show mom some love with these amazing Mother’s Day gift ideas! Visit my website to place your order! The purses qualify for April's half priced purse special!

Show her passion for fashion! See mom strolling in style with our 5th Avenue Bag in Taupe, dressed up with our Scarf in Lil’ Blossom! Tuck the Fold-And-Go Organizer w/Notepad in our Lotsa Dots print inside to house her e-reader, with plenty of room for snacks, lotions and errand necessities. And remind her who loves her most with our Lil’ Expressions Mini Zipper Pouch. Whether she uses it as a perfect carryall for little extras or finds spontaneous fun from a toy tucked inside, this is a gift she’ll treasure.

Cindy’s favorite can be mom’s new favorite, too! Roomy and ready for anything, this eye catcher in Black Parisian Pop is even a perfect diaper bag! Add the hands-free convenience of our Organizing Wallet in Black Parisian Jacquard and she’ll have summer excursions covered, complete with clip-on convenience for her keys. And what’s a great bag without that little added touch? Use our Medium Printed Rosette Clip in Pink Pin Dots to send mom out in style!

Thursday, April 19, 2012

The Bookshelf

If any of you are into reading Fantasy, Paranormal Romance, Urban Fantasy or Dark Fantasy. Yes, I know it sounds redundant but depending on which bookstore or what library you may find any of these books classified under any of these subcategories. I'm even seen some in Horror even though it's far from Horror. Anyhow, "The Bookshelf" page links to another blog that I keep for reviews of books I've read. If you're looking for something good to read, I promise I don't give you any spoilers. I really hate that when someone's telling you about a book and they give you all the info including the plot and the conclusion to the book. Where's the fun in that?

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Food on the Table

I'm always looking for ways to be more efficient and save money grocery shopping and I have always found the way to do that is planning a menu. It doesn't matter if you want to shop weekly, bi weekly or monthly. You can save money by planning your menues and doing it to go along with the sales. I tried out Food on the Table this week and found that I really like it! You choose your stores, then the site will give you recipe options based on what is on sale and you can narrow down if you have any dietary restrictions-including gluten free!- at those local stores. Then you can make a grocery list, you edit out what you may already have in your pantry and add the other things you might need. for the week. I saved $75 and earned 375 gas points at Giant today by only buying the things I needed. If you haven't given this a try check it out there's a coupon code to get it for FREE for LIFE....just use the coupon code SPRINGFREE! Definitely worth it, especially with the $0 price tag!

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Preschool Plantings: Biology

Preschool Plantings
R is my little helper. No matter what I'm doing she wants to help. So when I have a task that she can help with AND I can teach her something it makes it all the more special.  My task today was to get my seeds started. I had bought the seed packets, the potting soil, and the peat pots to get them going about a week or so ago and this was the first chance I've had the energy to get them done. So we laid out a trash bag on the kitchen table. The weather was cold and windy today so our activity was moved indoors. Then, I showed R  how to fill the peat pots 1/2 with dirt so that's what she did. Then, we put a couple seeds into each pot and labeled the pot with what was in it and covered it with more dirt. Then she got to water it. While we were planting our seeds we talked about what the seed needs to become a strong and healthy plant. I told her that the soil was there to give it its food, then the water and the sun also help it to grow strong and then produce fruit so that we can eat it. We planted zucchini, yellow squash, okra, hot peppers, cilantro, rosemary and 2- basil and 2- parsley. Then we placed them in the window so they could get their sun. I explained to R that after the seeds start to sprout we will plant the peat pots into BIGGER pots so that they can continue to grow big and strong. So I have a feeling that I'm going to be asked to see the plants and to water them daily. Love my little helper <3

Water helps it grow!


Clean up crew, E!

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Essential Oils Experiment take 1

Alright! Alright!

So I got my oils on Saturday (squee!), and I have been having a fun time experimenting with them. On the first night, I rubbed Lavender on R and E's feet and they slept for an extra 1.5 hours which considering it was very much needed I was thankful! I was also feeling a tickle in my throat and worried I was going to wake up with a cold I decided to break out the diffuser that came in my kit and use the On Guard (immune support blend). I did not wake up with a cold I wasn't 100% but I wasn't sick and normally I would have awoke with a sinus infection. I've used Eucalyptus and Lavender to help me sleep and since this is an area in which I REALLY struggle with I was happy to find I felt like I got some very restful sleep (this was the same night that the kids slept in). The kids have since  gotten some oil rub downs after baths to help them sleep. E suffers with horrible cases of eczema so I've put a combo of Melaleuca and Lavender to help soothe his itchy-ness I hope after a few applications I will start to see a big difference in his complexion. At this point if he doesn't stop scratching his entire body is going to be scar tissue. So, these products have inspired me to expand on what I've used. I've ordered some empty gel capsules so that I can get myself on a better path with my Lupus symptoms and overall health. I'm eager to try the Slim and Sassy. I've always gotten really down on myself cause it's always the last 10-15lbs that I just can't seem to get off no matter my diet and exercise routine. So I'm going to see if the oils help me along the way. If your interested in more info check out the doTERRA tab to see more from the company.

Friday, April 6, 2012

Tax Day Giveaway


The Coup Diva and Making Cents with D have teamed up with some awesome bloggers to bring you this amazing chance at making tax day a little easier this year...We got some cash for you! Grand Prize: $220 Entries will be accepted from April 1 at 12:01am EST until April 16 at 12:01am EST. There are no mandatory entries but there are lots of ways to gain more entries to to the giveaway. The more tasks you complete, the more chances of winning! Open worldwide. Must be at least 18 years old to be eligible for the prize. This giveaway is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with, Facebook or Twitter. Winner will be drawn on April 16 and will have 48 hours to respond to the notification email. Good luck! a Rafflecopter giveaway

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

doTerra Essential Oils

Many know that I live with Lupus (SLE). I have signed up for doTERRA because I have heard many success stories on essential oils relieving symptoms and ailments. Currently I am on 6 meds to help me manage my Lupus and have found recently that losing just one of them causes my system to flare. I am tired of living in pain and having to rely on heavy drugs to help me and when I can't get my meds I have to deal with the consequences of not having them. If you suffer with migraines, allergies (seasonal, food or environmental), anxiety, depression, eczema, fatigue, sleeplessness, stress, indigestion, motion sickness, joint pain and swelling these can all be treated with essential oils.

My nephew has a chronic case of the morning person ;) He has never slept past 6AM in all his 5 almost 6 years until last night my SIL rubbed lavender oil on his feet before bed and he slept until 8AM! This alone made me go alright I need to give this a go.

While researching doTERRA and their product line I found they have other health and beauty lines formed from essential oils. You could have your facial cleanser and anti-aging moisturizer done completely through essential oils. There's hair care, home spa treatments, wellness packages, vitamins and probiotics, weightloss and control.

I figure at the root of all medicine at least in history is plants. If we were to strive to live a more natural and organic life we might not have the diseases and ailments that we have. So I for one have decided to have my family get back to the root of it all.  We eat more fresh foods, we will be using essential oils over traditional medicines and through this I think we will see a healthy difference.

If you would like more information on doTERRA and using essential oils please check out my doTERRA tab above. If you are interested in learning more about Lupus please visit

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Butterfly Cupcakes

My daughter is having an Easter party tomorrow at preschool and we're in charge of bringing the cupcakes. I got this idea off pinterest which it looks like it originates from Martha Stewart's web site. I changed it up a bit to make things better for me and what I could find. My daughter loves to help me in the kitchen so I had an assistant with the cupcake baking and a little bit with the decorating.

 I used a box mix whatever you like. R chose Triple Chocolate Fudge (yup! she's my kid). You make the cakes according the box. When it comes to the decorating I got some of the canned frosting by Betty Crocker. I was feeling a little lazy and didn't feel like mixing up buttercream, dying it and carting out my cake decorating gear to decorate the cakes. I used Twizzler's in chocolate for the butterfly bodies and the fudge covered pretzels "Flipz" for the wings. Riley liked putting the bodies on the butterflies.

So here's the finished product

Since we had a couple extras, I let my kids have a taste test after dinner. This was a picture of E sucking down his milk like a big boy (for the first time without a lid!).
 Anyhow I hope you love them! I thought they were cute and super easy! If R was a little younger I might have made these for her birthday party!