Honey & Lavender Oatmeal Soap

If you’re following me on Instagram @Amanda_manda12 you may have seen me post a sneak peek 2 weeks ago for homemade soap. It took me a few days just to figure out what scent of soap I wanted to do. I threw down a few ideas from Pumpkin Spice, Coffee & Cardamom to Blueberry Banana and French vanilla until my husband asked me if we were going to be eating the soap? I realized I was getting a little to crazy on “flavors” and decided to keep it simple.ย  I went with 2 very common natural soap scents and that is Honey & Lavender.

I’m always looking to try something new and have never worked with or used Goats milk soap before (I’ll explain the minor difficulties I came across as I get into the method of prep section). If you’re new to Raw Goat milk, one fact is, it’s very benefiting to your skin. Goat milk soap is excellent for people with dry, sensitive skin or conditions such as eczema and psoriasis. Some of the benefits goat milk contains is: Alpha hydroxy acids (lactic acid) which helps in removing dead skin cells from your skins surface, keeping your skin looking smoother and younger. Vitamins: particularly high in Vitamin A, which is necessary in repairing dead skin tissue and maintaining healthy skin. Cream: The cream that is present helps boost the moisturizing quality and will not dry your skin out like most other soaps particularly in the winter months.ย  Minerals: Selenium is believed by scientists to have an important role in preventing skin cancer. This can also help prevent damage to the skin from excessive time in the sun. As for the other 3 ingredients, I chose Raw Honey because it is full of antioxidants, moisturizing, and naturally antibacterial, also great for giving your skin a little glow and slowing down aging. Lavender: reduces anxiety and stress, improves sleep, restores skin complexion and reduces acne. Lastly, Oatmeal: Yields clean and clear skin, removes dead skin cells, tackles oily skin, a natural defoliant and is also good for sensitive skin.

So as you can see, this soap is probably one of the best things to use on yourself for healthy, younger looking skin. I found that this soap has its own kind of a natural soapy like scent, but I recommend adding a dash of essential oil to make it extra delicious! I haven’t had the opportunity to use this soap on my face yet, but it’s great for hand washing! You can happily make your own soap from scratch if your feeling spontaneous, but I’ve seen fight club and that’s enough for me to start soap making by using a pre-made base which can be found online or in craft stores for under $10/pound.

 

Total Time: 1 hour

Yield: 4 Bars of Soap/1lb

Mise en Place:

  • 1 Pound Block of Goats Milk Soap Base
  • Essential Oil of choice (I used French Vanilla)
  • 3 Tablespoons Raw Honey
  • 1/4 Cup Oats
  • 2 Small Sprigs fresh Lavender, removed from stems
  • Soap Dye, optional (If you want a colored soap)
  • Soap Mold

Method of Prep:

  • Cut up the soap base into small cubes. Toss in a microwavable dish and melt for 30 Seconds. Stir and repeat until melted (I melted half the block first then added the second half and melted together).
  • Once the soap is completely melted (this part is tricky and you need to work fast as the longer the soap sits it begins to quickly solidify and you will have to melt again) Add in all the ingredients and mix until incorporated. Add in Coloring and mix.
  • Using a lightly greased soap mold, pour soap base in (If soap is beginning to lose it’s melted texture, toss back into microwave. I had to do this a few times because of how fast it was hardening).
  • Allow to sit in the molds at room temperature, untouched for a few hours until it is hardened again.
  • Take a shower ya filthy animal & ENJOY!!!

 

 

Framed Chalkboard

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The interwebs has so many fun and creative ideas for signage. I used to think dry erase boards were so fancy. You’d hang it up on the wall with the magnetic marker that would stick to the board and some of them even came with half of a cork board for pinning notes and pictures as well. These days, were way past cork and dry erase boards for writing cute notes to our loved ones, leaving a list of “to do’s” for the next day or even leaving a motivational quote for a quick reminder that you are awesome and life is good.

One style ofย  board that has become very popular is chalkboards. I still don’t quite understand the hype with chalkboards, but I do sort of like the look of them. Now the craft stores even have a chalk marker that makes writing on the boards look neater, in my opinion at least. Only thing I dislike about chalk markers, is when you go to erase the previous writing, it will sometimes leave a shadow of the lettering behind, so be careful when choosing to use the markers vs the chalk.

I personally love the framed chalkboard look. This was such a fast project to make and very inexpensive. Just another cute craft idea using old picture frames for great decor around the house. ๐Ÿ™‚

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Total Time: 30 Minutes-1 Day

Mise en Place:

  • 1 Picture frame (Size of your choice, Pictured above is an 8×10) *Also found frame from the thrift store, if looking to not spend a lot of money ๐Ÿ™‚
  • Flat White Primer (I used the Rustoleom Brand, in the aerosol can found at Home Depot)
  • Black Chalkboard Paint (See above)
  • 1 Large Paint Brush
  • Newspaper

Method of Prep:

  • Remove the glass from the picture frame, set frame aside.
  • Working on top of the newspaper, first clean the glass of any dirt then dry completely. Once dry, spray on primer. Let dry for 20 minutes then spray on a second coat and allow to sit overnight. (If in a rush to finish this in one day, just make sure primer is completely dry based off instructions on primer bottle before turning to the next step).
  • After primer has sat for a bit, paint on the first coat of chalkboard paint. Allow to dry completely and then add on a second coat. (Be sure to paint in the same direction for both coats. You will see paint brush lines left behind once dry, there’s nothing to really change that as far as I’m aware and wont effect the writing on the board at all).
  • After chalkboard paint has dried, you can now reassemble your picture frame and being to write on it as you please.
  • Enjoy!
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**Note: If you’ve never worked with chalkboard paint or primer before, please be sure to read the instructions on the bottles before using them to make sure you are using the right brand that will work on glass, how to use and how long drying time may take.

Monogram Cork Board

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Last year I did a similar post on a Monogram Letter where I used artificial flowers as a way to doctor up a large letter for decor around the house. This post is very similar to that but instead of flowers I’ve used wine corks. If you didn’t already know this, I have a slight, some may say addiction to wine. But I also work in the front of the house of a Country Club where I open 2-6 bottles of wine a week, sometimes many more and lots of my corks come from work lol so not ALL these corks are from me poppin bottles every night. I’m sure many of you have seen these cork board projects on pinterest, and if you haven’t well this is a very simple project and cute one to have around in the office.

This monogram letter was made for my Chef who got married this past weekend. As a wedding gift, I made them this little board of their new last name so they have something nice to hang some wedding photos on! If you aren’t able to collect wine corks as fast as me, you can find them on sale in most craft stores as well. These monogram boards make excellent gifts for the holidays and birthdays. Also it’s an hour long project that costs under $15! Can’t beat that. Happy crafting ya’ll!!

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Mise en Place:

-1 Large Monogram Letter (I used wood for this project)

-50+ Wine Corks

-Hot Glue Gun

-Glue Sticks (At least 5)

-Colored Paint (optional)

-1 Sawtooth Hanger with Nails

Method Of Prep:

-If planning to hang this board, attach sawtooth hanger with nails on back of board using a hammer.

-If you plan to paint the letter, first paint the back and allow to dry. Then paint the front and sides, allow to dry.

-Begin gluing on the corks one at a time until the board is fully covered. Depending on the shape of the letter, some areas might be tricky to fill, just do what you can to make the cork fit, even if you have to cut some in half. There may end up being some gaps throughout the letter, which is normal…some areas you really cant fully cover.

-Hang and decorate the board.

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Easy Project Ideas

This is one of my longer blog posts. I want to begin sharing craft ideas and I have a lot of catching up to do. Rather put up 50 separate posts, I combined a few into 1. Another reason why I wanted to put together this blog, was so I could share my passion for crafting along with cooking. I guess it’s a part of my genes that I have a small creative side. My dad for example, is a great artist. He is so good at drawing that I asked him to draw out my next tattoo which he still has yet to do…I guess he just really doesn’t want me to get more ink haha.

I’ve always found ways of keeping busy and ever since Pinterest dropped on the internet I have been crazy surfing for new recipes, decor ideas, quotes and I even used it to plan the perfect wedding for myself. I do owe Pinterest a lot of credit, not everything I put together I’ve come up with on my own…but many of it is ideas Ive gathered up from other pinners and turned them into my own.

If you’re looking for some inspiration on something new to make, maybe for a gift, group project, decor whatever your plan, here are 3 projects I’ve made recently that are super easy and are sure to please everyone. My instructions might be a little vague, so If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to shoot me a message. Thanks for stopping by, and have a great weekend ya’ll! xoxo

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Project 1: Fall Door Wreath

Time to Make: 45 Minutes

Mise en Place:

-1 Small Styrofoam round (found in the wreath area of craft stores)

-1 Roll (your choice) Fall themed ribbon

-1 Small bunch (your choice) artificial seasonal flower

-Large Ribbon (your choice) of color, I went with orange to go with the Halloween season

-Hot Glue Gun

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Method of Prep:

-Unravel about 3 feet of ribbon from the roll. Glue a small amount at the end of the ribbon and place it onto the wreath.

-Begin weaving the ribbon in and out of wreath until you get to the end. Glue the end piece on. Unravel another few feet of ribbon and continue the process until wreath is fully covered.

-Next, glue on the ribbon. If you find tying the ribbon on with string will hold better, you can do that.

-Lastly, Glue on the flowers.

-Hang on the front door and make all your neighbors jealous!

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Project 2: Wine Cork Napkin Holder

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Total Time: 45 Minutes

Mise en Place:

-35 Corks

-Hot glue gun

-Napkins!

Method of Prep:

-Glue corks together in sets of 5. I glued the sides of each cork to the next one.

-Assemble using the picture as a reference.

-Set out on the kitchen or dining room tables filled with a seasonal napkin. OR gift to someone for the holidays!

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Project 3: Chore Board

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Total Time: 30 Minutes

Mise en Place:

-Chalk Board (I found this Owl one in the Dollar bin at Target!)

-Chalk Paint Pens

-Ruler

-Small clothespins

-Stickers for pins (as a way to mark who is who)

Method of Prep:

-Write a list of items you want to mark on the chore board. Using a ruler, draw as many lines as needed to mark for the columns.

-On the clothespins, come up with a system of how you want to mark what clothespin belongs to who. On mine, the gold paws are mine and blue are my husbands. Either stick or glue on the stickers, whatever will hold longer.

-Write chores on the board and place pins on who’s turn it is for each task.

-Hang in desired room of house.

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A Walk on Lake Erie During Sunset

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As mentioned, I want this blog to be more than just food. Nature is such a beautiful thing that I don’t get to enjoy much due to my job being indoors. On my day’s off I try to spend as much time outside as possible to take in fresh air and the beauty I see very little of. Last week was the start of Spring and even though the first day drew in some snow flurries in N.E Ohio, the weather has slowly begun to warm up giving us hope that winter is packing his bags and going away for a few months.

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It was a 45 degree day with heavy clouds and the sun fading in and out. At about 5 pm, the clouds finally broke up and allowed the sun to stand still for a while making a chilly evening seem cool from the little warm of the sun kissing your skin as it began to lay down for sleep, so I took to the lake with my camera. I would hate to waste such a nice sunset sitting on the couch catching up on Top Chef (my current addiction) after being stuck in the house all day, I needed my ipod and some fresh air to relax and take my mind off life for a while.

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Lake Erie may not be as clear as the Pacific Ocean or a beautiful as the Atlantic, but it’s home and to me home is love. I can’t wait to take more walks along the lake this summer and even hit the parks for more pictures. Cleveland is actually quite nice if you take the chance to stop what your doing and look around. If you get the chance, spend more time outdoors. Grab your ipod and go for a walk with nature. Take a book and sit in the park, put your dog in the car and take a drive to somewhere you can walk and play. Enjoy the outdoors while it’s legal ๐Ÿ™‚

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The world is yours to explore

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Study nature. Love nature. Stay close to nature. It will never fail you.

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“I swear to you, there are divine things more beautiful than words can tell.” -Walt Whitman

**Pictures we taken at Huntington Beach in Bay Village, OH