Friday, November 7, 2014

It's a String Thing

Sew (pun), I'm in this photography class this semester.  I'm no photographer, but I do love me some mixed media; more specifically, media that has dimension.  I've always loved the look of sewing over top of pictures, so I thought I'd try my hand at it.  I actually got one of my works from this series into a show about sustainability at the end of the month (whoever wants to come and eat some cheese cubes with me is totally welcome). 

As for the meaning behind this piece...gah.  I'm not one for giving meanings.  I'd much rather hear what you think it's saying.  That's art for elusive...

That's all.  (:

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Le Grande Buffet: Part II

Sooooooo remember that buffet my friends and I were working on ages ago?  Well, in case you've forgotten or didn't read my first post on our buffet project, we started with a not-so-snazzy thrift store dresser and turned it into a fab-u-lous piece for my friend's new dining room.  Are you caught up?  Great.  Well, the project was actually finished months ago, but I totally forgot to post pictures of the finished product!  Silly me.

So here it is, folks. 

Feel free to have a moment to take it all in.

We picked up these knobs at Hob Lob (ha..."knobs at Hob Lob...") and I think they take this old dresser to a class of its own.  And they ended up matching the painted black splash perfectly!  



Thank you for patience.  I'm just really into dramatic suspense.

P.s.  If anyone has on old dresser you would like to transform, let me know.  I'm kind of an expert now.

Friday, October 17, 2014

Homemade Hygiene

I love Thursdays. 

Thursdays are basically my Fridays.  I'm finished with my classes by 12:15 and get off of work by 3:30.  I then (usually) have the rest of the day to do whatever I want to do.  The question is:  what to do with all this sacred free time?

Pinterest projects.  That's what I do.

As I'm becoming emerged into the world of all natural, chemical free living, I've been stocking up on recipe upon recipe on making your own hygiene products.  Yesterday was the day I finally decided to ditch a few of my products in exchange for a natural version I think my body will appreciate more.  So I got a little crazy at Sawall's, bought everything and anything I needed to complete my concoctions and spent the rest of the afternoon in my kitchen experimenting.

Here are three super simple recipes that I made (if I can do it, you do it!):

Orange & Mint Sugar Scrub

1 cup sugar
1/3 cup sweet almond oil
Orange & Peppermint essential oil

Combine sugar and oil well.  Add essential oils to preference, generally about 2/3 orange and 1/3 peppermint.  (I added about 30 drops total, but you could surely get away with less!)  Spoon the mixture into a cute jar and voila!  You've got yourself some sugar scrub.  This recipe was easy-peasy!

You could also experiment with other oil combinations if you're feeling adventurous.  Whatever ones you pick, your skin will love them!

Citrus Deodorant

6 tsp melted coconut oil
1/4 cup aluminum free baking soda
1/4 cup arrowroot powder
15-20 drops Lemon, Lime, & Grapefruit essential oil

Comine baking soda and arrowroot powder in a bowl and mix with a fork.
Mash in the coconut oil until a nice paste forms.
Add in essential oils to your fancy.
Pour mixture into an empty deodorant container or a jar, and be super proud of yourself.

(Just a precaution:  the coconut oil will melt when warmed up or when applied to your skin, so just be aware!)

And last but not least...

 "Liquid Daydream" Roll-on Perfume

1 1/2 tsp melted coconut oil
1/2 tsp sweet almond oil
15-30 drops Grapefruit & Peppermint essential oils

Fill your 10ml roll-on perfume bottle with the ingredients listed above.  Adjust the amount of oils based on how strong or subtle you want your scent to be.  Snap on the roller, and shake before each use!  Dang, that's easy. 

I absolutely L O V E the smell of grapefruit and peppermint oil together, but there are endless oily combinations you can try!

Let me know if you try any of these recipes, and I'll keep you updates on the homemade hygiene ventures I try out in the future.

Stay oily!


Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Keep Calm and Oil On

Hello, my friends.

So if you are a fellow oiler and you haven't heard what's been going on this past week, the FDA decided to crack down on us.  They sent a letter to Gary Young (the founder of Young Living) saying that people were claiming things about oils that aren't true, and that these statements violate certain sections of the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (if you care to read the letter, you can find it here).  As you can imagine, the actions of the FDA are causing quite a stir in the oil community and quite a few people believe the regulations of the FDA are impending on our constitutional rights.  Either way, we have been instructed to remove all instances that establish the intended use of essential oils on our websites and social media accounts, therefore I am removing all of my past blog posts about oils just to be safe (usually I don't mind being a rule breaker, but I'm wanting to be respectful of the FDA's wishes and represent my company well).  I'm praying this will all blow over soon and I can once again go back to telling you all how wonderful oils are!

That's all for now.  I hope you all are enjoying the blossoming of Fall colors and don't mind saying goodbye to summer for now.

Vive les huiles! 

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Into the Montana Wilderness

Last week my family packed ourselves in our 7 passenger van, punched our destination into our not-so-trusty GPS (it ended up quitting on us a while later) and set off to the Montana wilderness.  My sister decided to spend a year studying at Montana Wilderness School of the Bible, and since we're all so selfless, we decided to move her out as a family and get acquainted with where she's going to be spending the next two semesters.  I would be lying if I told you I wasn't nervous to be stuck in cramped conditions with my dear family for the drive, but it actually turned out quite nice.

(Obviously our first stop.)

Getting in touch with our 1880s style.

A nice reminder in the gas station bathroom stall.

Of course we had to see where National Treasure was shot.

Peeping on George.

A side trip through Sturgis...obviously not the only ones to have this idea...

The sibs.

Our album cover in case we ever come out with a CD.

We "rock."  (Badoom-CH)


(I was trying to take a picture of these buttercups and they would NOT STOP MOVING.  I promise you I don't usually strangle innocent flowers...)

This awesome waterfall we happened upon right before our brake pads died in the middle of Wyoming.

Our last stop:  bison-watching in Yellowstone National Park.

We had fun.  The only down side was that when I was packing for the trip and I was looking at the weather for "Augusta, MO."  If you are smarter than me, you've probably already realized that "MO" is in fact NOT Montana, but Missouri (which apparently is fantastic this time of year).  I unfortunately did not realize this until I was in August, MT and I was freezing my patookas off (I'm not quite sure what "patookas" are, but whatever they are, they were freezing).  It was so cold it almost snowed the night we were there.  And lucky for us, the century-old hotel we were staying at didn't have central heat.  Yay for Montana!  Needless to say, we survived the night.

After getting Dani unpacked and settled and blubbering our way through tearful goodbyes, we turned around and began the trek home.  Max and I quickly became accustomed to our new lives as "only children" and bonded over multiple games of Phase 10 and F'real milkshakes (which are our new favorite things).  With the help of a Starbucks espresso shot and two 5 Hour energies (never again) , I drove through the night and made it all the way to Chicago before my dad took over and I crashed in the backseat.  Yes, I am still recovering.   

 How did we do it? 

There is only one reason (besides the sovereign grace of God) that we all made it through this trip alive...

I kid you not.  Without these magical liquids we would've been at each others throats within the first hour.  I used my handy car diffuser to diffuse Thieves and Purification to keep illness away and purify the air, and I did a handy trick where you put oils on clothespins and stick them in your car vents.  I switched out my "clothespin diffusers" with Peppermint for clarity for the driver, and Orange to promote happy feelings.  Each morning I would pass around Joy and Stress Away, and when people were getting grumpy I would give them more and a few minutes later we'd be holding hands and loving each others company once again.  (Shout out to Isaac Jenkins for this wonderful image!) 

Thank God for adventure, family, and oils.

Friday, July 18, 2014

Just Do It

I saw this video at Young Living's 2014 Grand Convention.  (It was actually played in a secret meeting I wasn't really supposed to be in, but that's a whole other story.)  I had never heard of this guy Art Williams before, but I discovered he was a high-school-football-coach-turned-success-story.  He's pretty cool.  Don't you just love that southern twang?

Now you may think Art's message is overly simplified.  Just do it.  I had that same thought when I saw this video for the first time.  "You can't just do it," I thought to myself.  "You need a plan.  You need people.  You need resources..."  Well how in the world do you get all those things?  You do it.  You do it, and do it, and do it, and do it 'til the job gets done.

This was huge for me, especially as I was just beginning my Young Living business.  I was full of excuses on why I couldn't succeed.

I'm a poor college student, and all my friends are poor, too.

I don't have time.

I don't have energy.

I'm not a business person.

I'm not a good teacher.

I don't have enough knowledge.

The list of excuses was endless, and I was being held back before I had even started.  But after seeing this video, something was ignited in me and my outlook changed.  Now every time an obstacle appears before me and I start listing reasons why I can't get over it, Art's voice pops into my head and I just do it.  Every time I underestimate my abilities and the bullet points start adding up in my head why I should quit while I'm ahead, I do it anyways.  For the first time in my life I have goals; tangible, physical goals that I have written on paper and am "just doing" one at a time.  For the first time I feel almost invisible - knowing that I am the one that will choose to succeed or choose to fail; knowing that God is my right hand man who is my ever-constant source of strength and guidance.  And for the first time I believe - I mean truly believe - in myself and what I am capable of.  I think you'd be surprised how much you can accomplish if you'd just believe in yourself once in a while.

 "I'm not telling you   it's going to be easy, 
 I'm telling you  it's going to be worth it."
 Art Williams 

So, come on, people.  Let's do it.