I’m doing some thing different today. Along with my favorites of the week I have decided to clean out my inbox and bookmarks rather than continuing to store these links I would use this post as my go-to for future reference. With that in mind, this might be the longest post I’ve ever written. Of course I will break it down for you by subject so you can skim over to the topics that interest you.
- Heidi at Lightly Crunchy wrote a post months ago for a lovely scented Lavendar Beeswax Candle. I promised to teach my daughter-in-law how to make her own candles. I choose this one to be her introduction.
- So now you know how to make your own candles, Perfect Shine Housekeeping will give you a few ideas on what to use for the perfect candle holder. Think outside the box and look at your recycling first as well.
- Everyone has a liquid laundry detergent recipe, that is except me. Liquid detergents need a stove to combine all the ingredients. I was using a very simple recipe, baking soda and oxygen bleach, for my laundry needs. It worked fine, but I was looking for something different. I found just that here.
- I still have my tree branch on my wall that was my Christmas tree. It currently has a few painted pine cones and paper hearts the little ones made for Valentine’s day. When I saw this by Creative Jewish Mom I knew I had to save it and see if I could find the time to make this to brighten up my home until spring finally arrives, if you crochet you too might enjoy making these.
- Quilting was something I always wanted to learn, needless to say I’m not very good, you must be very precise with cutting and assembling the strips and the cutting takes a toll on my hands. Then I found this quilt tutorial and knew I would have to give it a try as there is no way even I could mess this up, it’s also a fantastic way to clean out those little scraps of fabric I have no idea what to do with.
- I normally avoid looking at organizational items as I don’t have much that needs organizing, but this organizer caught my eye. I hate having anything on the counter in the bathroom and currently have a small shelf to hold things up on the wall, it works but isn’t ideal. This hanging organizer on the other hand would be perfect, it would be hidden by the open door that leads to the toilet and tub yet easily accessible at the vanity just outside.
- Garden Therapy came up with a surprising way to use the wood from a tree that is no longer viable turning them into coasters for gifts. Talk about a free gift!
Natural Health and Home
- This was a new idea to me but wanted to hold on to this in case one of my children called asking for natural relief for ear aches. If you try this let me know how it worked for you.
- I mentioned a while back that I had given up using dish soap for washing my dishes and now use baking soda. Many of you questioned how this worked and my answer is surprisingly well. My way of application however was recently improved when Liesl showed her container she made for her baking soda dish washing. Prior to this I had a large container with a measuring cup in it from which I would scoop out what I needed each time I did dishes. This meant opening a cabinet, prying the lid off and of course having to put everything away again. The minute I saw this I grabbed a jar and made my own container. In less than 3 minutes I had a much easier way to wash my dishes.
- Just a Little Less, Molly Mixtures shares two lists, her materialist wish list and her minimalist wish list. Looking at the first list I could see all the hours it would take to earn the money to pay for those items, but the next list made me smile, it was filled with all the things I enjoy and cost nothing. Click here to read what she learned about herself from these two lists.
- After reading the story about my son’s seizures Alex wrote a very thoughtful post on how sustainability relates not only to the planet but to our bodies as well.
- Do you ever stop and wish for the olden days? Annie Nygma compares the older ways of making everything from scratch to today where we can buy what ever we need ready to use, and asks “which is simpler?”.
Money and Spending
- Minimalist lifestyle wrote about the top ten things Americans spend their money on. Some of the things truly shocked me on this list, maybe a few will shock you too.
- Linda from My Crafty Home Life has an interesting idea. Have a room or part of your home that bugs you? She challenged her readers to take one month to improve a room in your home. This idea hit home for me because I want to fix up my bathroom, doing it a little each week rather than the entire room in a day is easier on the budget and my back.
- I mentioned recently that my apartment building is currently for sale, how I wish I could afford to own it but that’s another subject, the field that we have cleared and turned into our garden area could possibly be developed and with that would go the community garden. With that in mind I have been thinking of ways to add to my garden that could easily be moved. Leisl shares how she uses broken baskets for growing her potatoes here.
- Gather and Grow has a great post on urban permaculture and ways to make full use of your yard without need for any more lawn mowing.
- What does a seed mean to you. Have you ever considered its meaning beyond providing you with healthy food? Our Tiny Earth may prompt you to look at your seeds in a whole new way.
- Heidi has to be one of the most creative individuals I’ve met both in the kitchen and in making gifts for others. This time it’s her pumpkin pie granola. In the fall the taste of pumpkin is something I can never get enough of.
- I rarely cook and even more rarely bake, but the holidays are the time you will find me in the kitchen. I had to try this recipe so jotted it down and took it to my son’s home for Thanksgiving where his wife was kind enough to let me experiment. This sweet potato recipe didn’t disappoint.
- Another pumpkin recipe this one from Creative Savv is for Pumpkin Praline Granola, so delicious!!
- As you all know by now, I don’t have a stove which means I use my slow cooker all the time. Purposely frugal wrote a post with 9 crock pot recipes that taught me a few things such as learning I could have baked potatoes without an oven.
- Want pasta sauce in 5 minutes, here’s how to have just that.
- I may not have a stove, but I have my grandmother’s all metal made in USA blender that I use for my smoothies. Good Girl Gone Green caught my attention with her Chocolate Green Smoothie and it will be a favorite for a long time.
- Poppy shared a tutorial on how to make your own play dough. I am always looking for ways to allow the little ones to enjoy any kind of creative play without chemicals.
- Little Eco Footprints wrote a wonderful article on creative eco friendly gifts for children and by children. My grand daughter loved making her own beads from paper scraps.
- I’ve learned little ones love to sew and act grown up. Here’s a great way to introduce sewing that can be a lovely gift or decoration in their room from Easy Crafts for Children.
- I have a box where I store all the cardboard I collect for crafting with the little ones so when I find something beautiful made from cardboard I like to save it for a rainy day this cardboard heart locket is perfect for young children.
- Make your own chalk from egg shells. Never heard of this? Me neither but I can’t wait to try it.
- Every child seems to enjoy playing doctor whether with siblings or their dolls instead of buying a doctor’s kit make one. This kit uses real items and it’s proof that you don’t need to buy toys to entertain children, although I would most likely use an old suitcase or cardboard box for the container rather than the plastic container.
- Doll houses are very expensive to buy, and most in my price range are plastic. Susan at Second Chances came up with a great way to re-purpose something you may have around the house to make a collapsible doll house. I’m definitely making this when I find album covers.
- I found a great recipe for watercolors on While He Was Napping. It is a regular occurrence that a child will spill paint while working. Using a small box and an egg carton spillage should never again be a problem
- I’ve been blogging for just over a year, it has been a huge learning curve for me. I hear all the time from new readers that they have started a blog but don’t know how to find other blogs or don’t know how to get noticed. Wendy wrote a great short post on how to get more traffic to your site. I’ve held on to this, but still have a few of her suggestions to check out.
Environmental Issues and Current Affairs
- I love when I hear about a company switching to more energy efficient practices so I was especially happy to read this article on a company that has switched all electrical usage to their solar array in Florida.
- Tegan amazes me with how young she is and what amazing insight she has. In this post she shares her views on the democracy.
- We ask ourselves why more people are oblivious to the damage we are doing to the planet on a daily basis. Could it be because we have no bad guy to point to to mobilize and take action?
- Sue Dreamwalker wrote an amazing post on the fragility of life, she shares so much that we may forget to think about as we travel the consumerist way of living.
- A trip to the landfill was on the agenda for Everyday Life On a Shoestring, check out her post on what she learned from this trip from the recycling program to what needs to be improved.
- There are some things that don’t need words. This picture is one of them check out what we really need in our kitchen.
- What did our grand parents call organic food?
- I love artists, they are so creative. Jen from Winter Owls shares a laugh at her expense this week.