Paint Nite: Girl’s Night Out

Paint Nite- Girl's Night Out

On July 22nd I enjoyed a rare girl’s night out with some friends. One was a friend I went to school with and the others were new friends I made that night while we were out. We had a lot of fun and it was nice to be out for a few hours with some adults. My mom was willing to watch my son so I was able to go out.

We paid ahead of time and made reservations online. We got there early, had a chance to chat, a few of us had a bite to eat and most of us enjoyed a glass of wine while we painted. I think there were around 30 of us. It was a bit crowded, but we all had a great time.

The instructor was great and she even painted along with us. We all had a different interpretation of the painting we were doing, but they all looked great when we were finished. I talked to the guy that was assisting everyone (getting us more paint and paper towels, even offering pointers) about a frame for my painting. He said that IKEA has frames for about $10 that fit the canvas size we used that night perfectly. I haven’t gotten there to check them out yet, but I’d like to soon.

Right now my painting is hanging on a nail in my bedroom and I still catch myself admiring it from time to time. There was one woman whose painting went completely wackadoodle and she wound up with a sort of butterfly or moth looking thing that was purple, rather than the ladybug on her flower and it was big! But it looked really awesome all the same. I had thought about making the background or flower a different color, but I stuck with the original colors and I love mine.

Paint Nite

Everyone hung around for a bit afterwards and there were lots of pictures taken for the Paint Nite Facebook page and just for the heck of it by attendees. We took a couple of group pictures that aren’t shown here because I didn’t bother to ask if I could use them on my blog. It’s really not a big deal.

Our group was talking about possibly going somewhere else to hang out for a bit, maybe get a little something sweet, but ultimately we all decided it was getting late and we’d rather just head home. My friend that invited me had a small belated birthday gift for me too. That was really nice of her, it was a necklace.

I’d really love to try this again in the near future and maybe get a few of my friends together to do it. Thanks very much for reading my blog! Feel free to send any feedback and as always, please leave comments or even send me an email as I love to hear from my readers!

Wrecking Ball

Wrecking Ball

Wrecking Ball – Building 429

I don’t watch the news most days. Do I know what’s going on in the world? For the most part, yes. There are times I miss things, but I can usually catch up on Facebook. Why? Because it depresses me and upsets me, that’s why! Every time I turn on the news all they talk about is the bad in this world. I know there’s still good in this world, but it gets so lost and overshadowed by the bad. I do worry about raising my son in this world, but I’m doing the best I can. Sure, I have fears and doubts that I’ll wreck things, but I give that stuff over to God and admit that I’m a mess, lol! And yes, even a wrecking ball! I know I can’t be the only one!

I also don’t know where God is taking me, but I press on and I pray that I’m following God’s calling for my life. Even when I’m in a bad mood and all I can see is negative (like when my son is misbehaving), I know God will lead me through it. I do ask Him “Why?” a lot and get frustrated when there’s no reason. Right now I’m pretty frustrated because a very good friend of mine was given a life-changing diagnosis. She’s a great and wonderful friend and has been through SO MUCH and doesn’t deserve this! But we have to trust that God knows what He’s doing, so I pray for her every day and do my best to be there for her.

Am I the only one that feels this way? Probably not, but sometimes it sure can feel that way. Sometimes I wonder if God doesn’t let things happen to remind us that we are SO WEAK without Him, even though we think we’re strong. Let’s never forget that LIFE GOES ON.

July’s StorEnvy Challenge Purchase

July's Shop Challenge Purchase

So I realize this post is late since we’re well into August now, but I DID buy these in July, even if it was the last few days of July! Lol I have been thinking about ear cuffs recently, making my own as well as buying some from other artisans as well. I did some searching on StorEnvy and found these simple but really pretty silver ear cuffs that I fell in love with. I love that they’re offered as singles (left or right) as well as a pair. I decided to get a pair so I could wear a cuff on either ear, or both! Here’s a collage of the pictures I took that are in the title photo, but without the effects added:

Carmen

She included a small thank you card with a hand written note inside which I thought was just awesome! I loved the packaging as well, simple but very elegant and it did a great job at protecting the war cuffs. If you’re not familiar with wire, it’s not difficult to bend it out of shape most of the time so it’s important to package it properly to keep it looking as it should.

I’m really happy with my purchase and I think I’ll be exploring this shop a bit more to see if there’s anything else I might want to add to my collection. Even though I make jewelry I’ve always enjoyed buying handmade jewelry from others because we all have a different style and some jewelry makers create things I’d never dream of trying, or don’t have the ability to make for various reasons.

Keep an eye out for my August StorEnvy purchase and blog post that follows! I’m still trying to decide what I want to buy for this month! Thanks very much for reading my blog! Feel free to send any feedback and as always, please leave comments or even send me an email as I love to hear from my readers!

http://www.storenvy.com/products/15887406-silver-ear-cuff-no-piercing-cartilage-ear-wrap

What We Did for My 35th Birthday

What We Did for My 35th Birthday

So, if you recall my previous post about needing some “me” time and just wanting one day to sleep in, this is sort of related to that. That post talked about my mom’s reaction when my friend brought up the idea of me sleeping in for my birthday and how my mom acted like it would be a terrible idea.

WELL, my mom came to me just before my birthday and asked me if I’d still like to be able to sleep in for my birthday. WHAT!? Lol Yes, she did that. I was pleasantly surprised and I took her up on the offer. We initially talked about letting me sleep until around 9 am and I’d be able to get up, get my coffee and breakfast, then retreat back into my room for another hour or two to do whatever I wanted, like write. That sounded like an awesome idea to me!

But, guess what actually happened? I slept in until 8 am, so that’s pretty close. I didn’t get to relax in my room after that though. It was my idea to change the plan, so I have no complaints. I heard about a HUGE grab bag sale at the consignment shop in our area, Once Upon A Child and I wanted to go so I could get some clothes for my son. Seeing as he’s growing like a weed, he needs clothes!

It started at 10am, as soon as their doors opened and customers could fill a bag for only $15! They also had shoes for 50% off! I filled two bags AND got him 3 or 4 pairs of shoes! I did splurge just a tad and picked up a couple of things that weren’t included in the sale. Even without the grab bag sale, Once Upon A Child has great deals for gently used children’s items. I’ve found clothes there that still had the store tags on them! I spent roughly $30 on everything, but without the sale everything I bought would have been well over $100!!

When I first got there, just after 10am there was a small crowd outside already and because it’s mid-July it was already hot and gross out, and I DID NOT want to wait outside. SO, I drove over to Michael’s to do a tiny bit of crafty shopping, just for half an hour or so. I didn’t have money to spend on much, but I picked up a few small items that were on clearance.

When I got back to Once Upon A Child I was able to get inside, but it was CROWDED to say the least. I took 2 bags from the woman that greeted me and got to work filling them. Most of my time in the store was spent waiting in line of course, but I was out by about lunch time, so it wasn’t terrible.

After I got home and fed my son (he was refusing to eat for my mom), we packed up and headed to Annapolis to do a little shopping and have lunch. We stopped for lunch first since my mom and I were STARVING (by this time it was after 2pm). We went to Target and being a mom, I picked up diapers for my son, then we wandered around. Again, being a mom, I went for the toys and found a Mega Bloks dump truck for him, lol. He has the police car one and really likes it, so I decided to get the dump truck for him too. I also found him a new board book, lol. Wait, this is supposed to be MY day, right!? Don’t we all do this as moms? LOL!

I did eventually get to women’s clothing and I found a couple of tops and a pair of pants I liked and they were on clearance too. I’ll admit, about a week or so before my birthday, I got out to the Target closer to our house and spent some of my birthday money (courtesy of mom) and picked up some Bullet Journal supplies (yes, I have a BuJo). We had planned to go to Toys R Us after our Target stop (again, being a mom first!), but it was getting late and I knew my son was tired and would be hungry soon, so we made a quick stop to visit my dad at the nursing home, then came home.

In the past my mom and I would spend our birthdays together doing things like going shopping for some clothes or getting manicures and pedicures. Now however, I wouldn’t expect my one and a half year old to tolerate that for very long, especially getting our nails done. Plus, since I’ve made the switch to natural products, using the moisturizers and other products in salons will irritate my skin and the smell of the chemicals at the nail salons give me a terrible headache. I’d also much rather save the money and do my nails at home, especially since I’ve recently discovered I can use washi tape on my nails!! That will be an upcoming post soon, I’m waiting for my non-toxic clear polish to arrive from Amazon! I have some awesome washi tape that will look super cute on my nails!

The next day made me smile because I got a surprise phone call. Did I tell you I have an older sister? Probably not, but I do. She is married and they have 5 (yes 5!) kids, 4 girls and a boy (the youngest). Naturally, they keep their parents busy. My sister called the next day apologizing a bunch of times for not calling the day before, on my actual birthday. Honestly, I don’t recall calling her on her birthday, unless my mom did, so, yeah. I wasn’t upset with her at all because I know they tend to have a full schedule, especially now that it’s summer. She told me how they had softball games all day for a couple of the girls so they were out late and she slept until around 11 or 12. She said she meant to call me so many times the day before but just didn’t do it. I thought she was going to cry or something. I kept telling her that it was ok and I wasn’t upset with her about it. It really made my day, to say the least. She and I are about 15 years apart, so we’re not SUPER close, but we love each other to pieces and her kids mean the world to me.

Anyway, it was a great weekend, even if it didn’t go as planned. Heck, my dad even called me the next day and said he hadn’t realized it was my birthday the day before when we were there visiting, lol! And it was a lot of fun seeing posts from my friends on Facebook sending birthday wishes, plus I share my birthday with a few other ladies too! So, that’s how my birthday went! I’d love comments if you want to leave them, or even send me an email! I really do love feedback from my readers!!

Essential Oils and The Raindrop Technique…I’m In LOVE

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If you’re not familiar with Young Living essential oils and you’re curious, send me a message. I don’t know a ton, but I have a wonderful friend who is super generous and will help anyone in any way she can. She’s the one that did the Raindrop Technique on me. She had it done once and she told me she actually grew! The technique uses a specific collection of essential oils:

  • Seven Single Oils (5ml bottles):
    • Thyme
    • Basil
    • Peppermint
    • Oregano
    • Wintergreen
    • Cypress
    • Marjoram
  • Two Oil Blends (5 ml bottles):
    • Valor®
    • Aroma Siez™

In order to perform this technique on others, especially for profit, you have to become certified, or at the very least, be trained in performing the technique so you can perform it on close friends and family. You can even do it to your pets! There is a kit that include all the oils listed above as well as an 8-oz. bottle of Ortho Ease® Aromatherapy Massage Oil  and an 8-oz. Bottle of V-6™ Enhanced Vegetable Oil Complex to use during the technique.

There are so many benefits to this technique as it provides physical and emotional support to the body and I was even a bit taller afterwards, just like my friend was! The oils are applied to the neck, spine and feet NEAT (undiluted), however there can be a tingling sensation because some of the oils are considered HOT, meaning they may require dilution before application. However, I didn’t experience that at all.

I did however experience lots of tickling! I’m very ticklish on my feet and back, I didn’t even know I was ticklish on my back! The way the oils were applied to my spine is what tickled the most I think. There were massage aspects to it that felt AMAZING. The technique lasts about an hour and most of the time is spent on your stomach.

Here’s a link to Young Living’s site that has information about the technique. Sadly, I found out recently that the kit is currently out of stock. Gary Young is so dedicated to the quality of his oils that if the quality isn’t good enough, he won’t sell the oil, so things will go out of stock, sometimes for a long time until he can get the highest quality he expects.

https://www.youngliving.com/raindrop/

By the way, if you’re interested in possibly having this done for yourself or someone you know and you live in Maryland, or nearby and don’t mind traveling a bit, let me know. The woman that did mine is always willing to have others come experience this and anything else she has to offer!

One more thing, if you’re interested in learning more don’t hesitate to contact me! Leave a comment on this post or head over to my Contact page and send a message! I love hearing from my readers!

Can Mom Get A Timeout??

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So, next month is my birthday, I’ll be 35. I have no problem sharing my age with my readers. One of my best friends was visiting a couple of weeks ago and we were talking about what I wanted for my birthday. Being a single stay at home mom, my entire world pretty much revolves around my son from 8am until 8pm 7 days a week. Granted, he naps most days from 2pm until 4:30pm. I use that time to shower and straighten up, and sometimes I take a nap. But for the most part my son gets most of my attention and I manage to squeeze in some blogging time here and there, but for the most part I write after he’s in bed or sometimes while he naps. I’m not a morning person, so I’m lucky to be out of bed and moving by 7:30am. This gives me enough time to make some coffee and sit for about 10 minutes before I get my son up for the day.

My friend asked me if I’d enjoy being able to sleep in on my birthday and even have a few hours to myself to do whatever I wanted. I told her that would be great. For those of you that don’t know, we live with my mom. I love my mom and she helps me a lot with my son, but he’s very attached to me, so there are certain things only I can do. The big one is feed him. Anyway, when she asked me about that I started thinking about it. Granted I love my son and most of the time I don’t mind the fact that my days more or less revolve around him until he goes to bed.

When my mom got home that night my friend mentioned the fact that it would be really nice if my mom would let me sleep in on my birthday and she’d get my son up in the morning and take care of him. The reaction from my mom would have made you think we’d asked her to cut off a limb. She started going on about how she works full time and she’s tired all the time and it would be hard for her to get him up and fed in the morning so I could have just a couple of hours to sleep in and relax. I didn’t say anything or make a big deal of it, but it sort of hurt my feelings. If I were married I’d hope to have the type of husband who would understand that there are times I need a break from being mom all the time. But I guess because it’s my mom and not my spouse, it’s not something I should expect.

I mean, she’s always saying how she doesn’t get as much time with him as she’d like, so I sort of thought maybe, just maybe, she’d be willing to do this. She knows I don’t just sit around all day doing nothing. Along with taking care of my son I make sure the dishes get cleaned up and put away, I try to write blog posts and I try to make jewelry as well as help with putting laundry away and fixing dinner for us. I’m also the one that goes out and does the grocery shopping, which takes most of the day. I’m really starting to feel burnt out and having just a few hours once in a while to do whatever I want would be wonderful. My mom usually takes at least one day week and spends it with her friends doing whatever it is she wants. This usually includes a nap, a meal and a movie or just general relaxing.

I don’t want anyone to get the wrong impression about any of this. I truly love my son more than anything in the world and my mom too. The fact that she supports us in every single way is a huge blessing that I can’t thank her enough for. But sometimes I feel like asking her if I deserve a break at all. Are there any other stay at home moms, married or single, that feel this way?

Thanks for reading my blog and please feel free to comment on my posts or even send me a comment personally. I love feedback!

June’s Shop Challenge Purchase

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This week’s post probably isn’t going to be very long. We did a yard sale this weekend and I totally exhausted myself. BUT, I bought something from Lu & Ed since I’m participating in the StorEnvy Once a Month Challenge.

I started out by visiting the StorEnvy shops that decided to participate in this monthly challenge so I could see what they had to offer. The more I looked the more I thought my first purchase should be for my son.

Plus, since Cody was the one that wrote about the idea to do this and I got the inspiration to participate from her, I figured I’d buy from her first, lol. Some of the stuffies are ones that I wouldn’t mind getting for myself! Did I mention I can be a big kid sometimes? 😀

So, I chose one of the library totes and my son loved it when I gave it to him. Granted he’s only 19 months, so he’s not really going to the library or anything yet, but he was having fun putting a couple of his toys inside and taking them out again. I think when he gets older he’ll love toting it around when we go out.

I haven’t yet decided what next month’s purchase will be, but I’m thinking it’ll be a piece of handmade jewelry for myself. Next month is my birthday! And even though I make jewelry, I love supporting others that make jewelry because I find pieces I love that I’d never be able to make myself.

Thanks for reading my blog and please feel free to comment on my posts or even send me a comment personally. I love feedback! Don’t forget to use the code “shopchallenge” at checkout to save 10% on your order at my shop!!

Joining the Once a Month StorEnvy Challenge

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I saw this post in one of my blog groups on Facebook and I decided to jump on board. Hopefully it will help a lot of small business owners, myself included. It’s all about supporting small business owners, specifically those who have a StorEnvy Marketplace. We’re going to purchase one item a month from shop owners, even if it’s a small purchase, it helps with exposure so consumers can find our shops and purchase from us.

The person that told me about it has her shop here. I love the monsters she makes and I plan on buying one for my son this month. I really think he’ll get a kick out of it. Oh, and this link will take you to the blog post she wrote for this challenge.

I had hoped this post would be longer, but my brain doesn’t want to let me write today! I hope other shop owners will help the cause and join the challenge along with us! AND if you shop with me, you can save 10% by using the code “shopchallenge” at checkout! So head on over and do some shopping to help us small business owners!
Thanks for reading my blog and please feel free to comment on my posts or even send me a comment personally. I love feedback!

What Do I Have to Fear?

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Royal Tailor – You Are My Rescue

With God, nothing. Even when I feel like He’s not with me, He is. It’s taken me a very long time to realize that. Even when I wasn’t doing things that pleased Him. There may not be some big sign from God to let us know that He’s watching over us, that’s what this song reminds us about. He’s always faithful.

Every single day we fail or fall and God is there, right on time. He’s not late and He’s never far away. I know many times a day I feel like I fail Him, but that’s ok. I worry about raising my son and teaching him everything about life. But with God I know I don’t need to worry about that. Sometimes I lose patience with my son because he doesn’t listen, but I need to remember that he’s only a year and a half old and still has a lot to learn.

I try not to focus on my fears too much because they’ll consume me and all I’ll do is worry, but sometimes they creep in. I worry about homeschooling my son. I worry about helping my mom financially because I can’t find work right now. I worry about raising my son by myself and wonder if I’ll ever get married. I even worry about how I’ll explain his father to my son when he gets older and asks, because I know that day will come eventually.

But then I remember that God tells us to give our worries and fears to Him and not to keep dwelling on them because He has everything under control. That’s what this song reminds me about. So when I get too consumed by my fears I stop and talk to God about it and ask Him to give me peace and help me be patient as I do my best to keep busy while I wait.

What are some fears that you have? Feel free to leave some of them in the comments so I can pray for you too! Thanks for reading my blog and please feel free to comment on my posts or even send me a comment personally. I love feedback!

Homemade Glycerine Based Tinctures

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Left to right: Dandelion leaf, Chamomile, and Lady’s Mantle

I’ve been making my own tinctures for a few years now. There are two different kinds I make. One is glycerine based and the other is alcohol based. Today, I’ll go over making glycerine (sometimes spelled glycerin) tinctures in my crock pot. Most of them take three days on low, but I did have one a while ago that took four days to steep.

The ones I’m making here are Dandelion leaf, Lady’s Mantle, and Chamomile. I use wide mouth mason jars so they’re easier to strain when they’re finished. I purchase most of my herbs in bulk from Amazon, Starwest Botanicals, Bulk Herb Store, Bulk Apothecary, and sometimes Mountain Rose Herbs. I usually compare prices, including shipping before I purchase. Sometimes, even if Amazon is more expensive, it works out for me because I have free two day shipping through Prime.

Here we go…

First thing I do is boil some water. I have an electric kettle for this, so I fill it up and turn it on.

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While I’m waiting for the water to boil I get everything I need: herbs, jars, lids, glycerine, potholders and towels (I don’t think I left anything out).

Then I scoop the herbs into the jars, fill to about ⅓ of the way full. It’s a little hard to see in the picture, but there’s a 600 ml mark on the jars I’m using and that’s about where you want to fill to.

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Once the water boils, pour just enough in to get the herbs damp. I usually use a chopstick or fork or something like that to help move the herbs around so the water can do its thing.

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Once you do that it’s time to top each jar off with glycerine. Fill just to the top of the jar, again, I use a chopstick or fork to stir everything up and help things settle, plus add more glycerine. (Don’t be like me and spill some of the mix, lol.)

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Once the jars are full, put the lids on nice and tight, and don’t forget to label them. Since all of mine started with different letters I just put the first letter of each on the lids. They kind of look like tea, don’t they?

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So these guys go in the crock pot (use some sort of pot holder so you don’t burn your hands!) all wrapped up in wet towels. Fill the crock pot up, and if you have a Ninja like me, carefully put the pot into the outer unit, turn that puppy on low and set a reminder so you don’t forget them. And don’t forget to add water periodically too!

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My Ninja has a 12 hour timer on it, so I have to make sure to turn it back up or it will turn itself off automatically.

After three days, I turn the crock pot off and let everything cool before I handle the jars. All that needs to be done now it straining. I use cheesecloth and strain them into a bowl, then pour the liquid into jars that are labeled with each herb’s name and store them in the fridge. I read somewhere that’s the best way to store glycerine tinctures, but I can’t remember where that was now!

Next time I need to make some alcohol tinctures, I’ll make a post about how I make them! They’re easy too!
Thanks for reading my blog and please feel free to comment on my posts or even send me a comment personally. I love feedback!