For a boy who has been obsessed with Lego from pretty much birth, it has taken us nine years to actually have a Lego themed birthday party. Of course the first place I turned was Pinterest, and you can find all of my inspiration on my birthday ideas board. I will be the first to admit that I was a bit over ambitious, considering I had an eight month old competing for my attention, but I think the late night crafting sessions were worth it.
Pinterest board, too! Happy Birthday, big guy!
Sunday, May 19, 2013
Thursday, April 11, 2013
Something came in the mail last week...
And look what was inside!
The Dude helped me unpack...
and sampled the goods.
Look at all of this loot! Inside that big box were 18 organic pre-folds, four covers, fleece liners, flushable liners, a wet bag big enough for the diaper pail, and a sample of detergent and bottom cream! Holy cow, it was like Christmas! I have been using pocket diapers and fitted with covers, but I don't have a full set of pockets (around 10, I think) and the fitteds are larges, which are really too big for him right now. I haven't used prefolds in covers since he was a newborn, and wasn't sure if they would be enough for my big wetter. After they were prepped (you need to wash untreated cotton diapers three or four times to fluff the fibers), I couldn't believe how soft they were! I kept petting them, but could never convince my husband to fondle them, too. Go figure. But I must say that I have had no problems with leaks, and although I usually use pockets at night, I have used the bummis pre-fold with one microfiber insert and had no leaks in the morning.
I am impressed by the quality of both the bummis diapers and covers. They have made a velcro convert out of me. Usually, I find that velcro wears out fast and even with laundry tabs, gets stuck to everything in the wash. Three of the four covers in the box were velcro and so far have not stuck to anything except what they are supposed to, and since the Dude is not so laid back during changes anymore, the speed is a definite plus! In the box is also a little booklet about cloth diapering, with details about use and care. Repeatedly, the company urges you to call or email with any questions about use, washing, problems, or questions of any sort. It's an impressive level of customer service, and I think it would be very helpful to first time cloth diaper moms.
If you wash every other day, this one box really has everything you need. It was so much more than I expected, and I am so thankful to Simple Kids and bummis for this fabulous gift! I couldn't resist one more action shot, the Dude in bummis with the snap cover.
Tuesday, March 19, 2013
I had pinned this tutorial link from A Farmer's Nest awhile back, but never got around to making it. (Somehow I find plenty of time to pin things! This was on my Great Ideas board.) Now that I am officially a SAHM (stay at home mom), I decided the $5.00 for a gallon of soap she listed sounded much better than shelling out the $3.99 for a small bottle of natural soap at the store. Fortunately, I had all of the ingredients at home - distilled water, a bar of soap, and glycerine. Yes, I have a quart of glycerine in my cupboard; I use it for tinctures and bubble projects with the kids. I buy this brand from Amazon. Anywho... I followed her directions exactly, but ended up with runny soap. This may be due to the fact that I used Dr. Bronner's soap, which is a soft bar soap to begin with and probably higher in water content. However, after browsing other recipes on the internet and finding that they used a much lower water to soap ratio, I decided to buy a second bar and add it in. I simply reheated the soap with the new shavings, and let it cool. The cooled soap looked more like the pictures in her tutorial, but when I blended it I found that it was thicker than before, but still thinner than commercial soap. It is more of the "snot"consistency she described. That being said, it works just fine. It pumps out of my recycled containers without squirting everywhere (like Dr. Bronner's liquid soap does) and it doesn't clog up the spout. Even using two bars of soap, you can't beat the savings! I filled two pumps and still have almost a full gallon in the jug! And since had everything but the second bar of soap on hand, I spent a grand total of $4.45.
|The thickened soap after the second bar was added|
Here are a few of my suggestions if you are thinking of trying this at home:
1. Use a food processor to grate the soap. It literally took two seconds, and cleanup is a breeze!
2. If you are using a soft, natural soap like Dr. Bronner's or one with lots of conditioners added (go for the natural!), use two bars.
3. Make it in the morning or afternoon and let it cool OVERNIGHT. I let the first batch cool for 10 hours and bottled it, then noticed the next morning that it had thickened a little more. I let the second batch cool overnight and it seemed to "set" better.
4. Use an immersion blender to mix the cooled soap, if you have one. It takes seconds!
5. Next time I might add some lavender essential oil to kick up the anti-microbial properties, and maybe some vitamin E, too.
6. Some recipes add a little honey. Why? I don't know, but since I saw so many with honey, it might be worth looking into.
This is a FAST project. The actual making of the soap, if you use a food processor, takes about ten minutes. The rest is just cooling time. I don't think I will buy hand soap again!
Have you ever made liquid hand soap? Do you have any tips to share?
Update 4/10/13: The soap continued to thicken over the next couple of days. By the time I needed to refill one container, it was so thick I had to thin it with water. I had one container of the original soap, which has since thickened to a good consistency. So next time, I think one bar and an extra day of thickening would make a perfect soap!
Sunday, September 16, 2012
It was based on my carrot cake recipe, but with some modifications to make it a bit healthier, so I can call it a snack and eat it more often. It's easy peasy to make, and puts all of that zucchini to good use if you are sick of zucchini bread.
1 1/2 cups organic sugar
1 cup coconut or sunflower oil
4 organic eggs
1 tsp vanilla
3 cups grated zucchini
3 cups Bob's All Purpose gluten free four (or your preferred mix)
1/4 cup raw cocoa powder (of course you can use regular, but the raw has more minerals and iron)
1 1/2 tsp xanthan gum
2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp gluten free baking powder
1 tsp salt
1/2 bag of chocolate chips (CF for those making this dairy free)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cream the sugar and oil. Add the eggs, one at a time. Add vanilla. Mix dry ingredients in a separate bowl, and wisk to mix. Add the zucchini and flour mixture, a cup at a time, alternating each and mixing well. Add chocolate chips and stir. Pour into a greased and floured pan (use cocoa for the flour and you won't get white specks on your cake) and bake for around 30 minutes. Use a toothpick to test.
I don't frost it, but you could dust it with powdered sugar, or frost if you are going for a traditional cake. I skip the extra sugar so I can eat extra cake!
Sunday, September 9, 2012
This is one of my favorite projects, and it's so easy! I don't have a tutorial, but it's simply an appliqué on a store bought towel (I got mine at Target for $5). I used fleece for the lego head. I chose fleece because it's soft and I had it on hand, but a micro-terry or french terrycloth would work as well. I did a Google search for lego heads and then drew the face on Wonder Bond free hand. I followed this procedure for the appliqué process, but I used a pressing cloth over the fleece (it melts!) and a lot of extra time to get the bond to stick. A little stitching and you have a custom Lego towel! It was Max's birthday present and has endured months of washing and is still going strong.
Wednesday, July 11, 2012
Monday, July 9, 2012
After selecting a t-shirt to use (looser fitting tees work better, as you will come to find out in this tutorial), choose coordinating fabrics for the bottom, or even another t-shirt. Madeline selected all of the shirts and fabrics for her nightgowns. You can use one large bottom piece or combine prints, as we do here.