Linen and Room Spray

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I love essential oils. I’ve used them to make a HFM relief bath for my toddler and holiday gifts in the past. When our local store stopped carrying out favorite Zum Room spray, I knew I needed to get creative and make one of our own. Which let me completely customize it for our favorite scents. We settled on a Rosemary, Peppermint and Eucalyptus blend.

Ingredients:
Rosemary Essential Oil
Peppermint Essential Oil
Eucalyptus Essential Oil
Water (honestly, we used previously boiled tap water, but you can use distilled or purified if you want!)
Spray bottle (we went fancy, but you can use any spray bottle you want!)

Directions:
Add about 10 drops of Peppermint Essential Oil to the bottle.
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Essential Oil Room Spray
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Then add about 20-30 drops of Eucalyptus Essential Oil and 20-30 drops of Rosemary Essential Oil. Shake and smell. If the peppermint is overpowering, add more of the other two. We originally started with 10 drops of each, but it ended up being too pepperminty for us. When you’re satisfied with the scent, add the water to just below full. Shake. Spray and smell again. If it isn’t quite what you expected, shake again and spray one more time. Still not right? Add more of what you’re missing.

Make sure you shake it before you use it on your pillows, blankets, sheets and/or pajamas. You can spray it on your skin (test a small patch first to make sure you don’t have a reaction) or hair, but don’t spray it in your eyes.

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Painting hack

I can’t possibly be the first person to think of this. But this little trick just saved me hours of cleanup after painting:

Painting Hack
At first, I planned to use press and seal, but when I went to apply it, it turned out the roll was almost empty. The next thing in the drawer was Saran wrap.

So I used that and the best painting tape ever, Frog Tape and now I don’t have to worry about drips on the wood!

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If only repairing the chips in the shower floor was this easy!

Ornament wreath

 

 

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This project looked so easy. And with the ornaments I got on sale at Target after Christmas, I thought it was the perfect late winter project: create a Mizzou ornament wreath for the front door, because in our house, we bleed black and gold. But let me tell you the truth: making an ornament wreath is HARD. It takes lots more glue than you think it would. Plus, hot glue burns hurt. Take my advice, leave the ornament wreath making to the pros or at least those on Etsy.

But if you don’t want to heed my warning, here are the steps to making this yourself.

Step 1: untwist a wire hanger (the kind from the dry cleaner) and bend it into an oval or a circle if you’d prefer.

Step 2: carefully thread your ornaments onto the wire hanger:

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Try not to break any. But don’t be too sad if you do. I broke at least five.

Step 3: Continue alternating colors and try to get some of each color on the inside and the outside. This is also where the hot glue comes in. Make sure as you’re adding the ornaments that you are hot glueing them together. This step wasn’t in the initial instructions and would have saved me breaking a few ornaments as I tried to move them around each other.

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Step 4: retwist the hanger together again without breaking any of the ornaments. If you’re an overachiever like me, add an old garden flag to the back with more hot glue.

Step 5: Use a ribbon to hide the bare spots.

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Step 5: hang from a door hanger. From a distance it doesn’t looked like a failed project. Except that it’s lopsided.

 

Cork trivet

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Thanks to friends and family, I finally had enough corks for this project. Turns out you need to use real cork corks because the plastic-y ones will melt (yikes!) if you put a hot pot on them. Melting things, like the counter top,  is exactly what I’m trying to avoid so that wouldn’t be good. I saw this project on Pinterest, but the link and subsequent searching didn’t have step by step photos, so I’m not certain I followed the suggested steps correctly, but it seems to work well enough. Besides, it only took about half an hour.

***Addendum: It took me extra time because I didn’t organize before. To save yourself the trouble, start step 0 by fitting the corks into the frame without glue first.***

Step 1: gather materials: a hot glue gun, a frame (I went with a cheap one from Wal-Mart), corks, glue sticks, cutting board, knife and some toothpicks. After I took this photo, I realized all the corks weren’t the same exact size so I was going to need to be creative and for sure cut a few, so I soaked some in hot water for easier cutting. (Note: This step is unnecessary if you have an electric knife as I discovered shortly after soaking the corks. If you have an electric knife, skip to step 4.)

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But since real cork floats (yay! These were real cork!) I needed to weigh the corks down so they could absorb the water better.

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Step 3: get out the fantastic electric knife J got me for Christmas. (Thanks again!). Turns out, I didn’t need to soak the corks because an electric knife cuts them just fine dry without crumbling! Yet another reason I am in LOVE with this knife.

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Step 4: We didn’t have any of the recommended plywood (seriously, who does?), so I went with the next best option and cut a cork into four pieces so that wood frame wouldn’t be touching the counter top and would allow some airflow under the finished trivet. Just hot glue the pieces to the back, flip it over and make sure it’s level and move on to step 5.

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Fair warning, step 5 is the longest step. This took at least 25 minutes. Mostly because I didn’t organize before I started. Step 5 is to fit all of the corks into the frame making sure they are above the wood. Some crafty Pinterst people suggest cutting the corks in half, but I decided that was  too time consuming and  might make the corks not be tall enough. If you get hot glue on yourself or on the top of the corks, just use a toothpick to wipe it off while the glue is still warm. I learned the hard way if you wait for the glue to dry, some of the cork will come off with the hot glue.

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Step 5.5: You might discover that some of the corks no matter what you try are just too short for the frame. In that case, cut a cork into a few pieces. Use the pieces to fill the gap.

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Now keep adding the corks until they fill the entire frame.

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When the corks fill the entire frame, you’re ready to move on to step 6!

Step 6: Make sure a heavy pot is level.

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That’s it!

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Easy homemade holiday gifts

Last year, when I needed a last-minute hostess gift, I whipped up this salt scrub. This year, I wanted something else that would be just as good for winter skin and came up with this chocolate oatmeal bath salt.

It’s really a mixture of epsom salt, ground oatmeal and cocoa powder.

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The first step is to grind the oatmeal in the coffee grinder, you’ll need half to a full cup, ground. It doesn’t have to be super fine. In fact, fair warning, if it is too fine, the whole mixture will be “fluffy” and could potentially create a bath mixture cloud when you open it. Step two is to mix the oatmeal and about a half cup to a whole cup of epsom salt in a bowl, just stir by hand to combine. Add the cocoa about a tablespoon at a time. You won’t need a lot, less than three tablespoons probably. The cocoa powder will coat the oatmeal and the epsom salts pretty evenly. When everything is mixed, add it to your favorite jar.

IMG_6707Include a note with directions and you’re done!
Screen Shot 2013-12-23 at 3.14.41 PMHappy Holidays!