Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Body Lotion Bar Giveaway

Mmmmm. My kitchen smells of lavender and peppermint. I've just finished my final batch of lotion bars for the holiday season. As with the first batch, these are also going out as gifts, and I've saved some for YOU! 

Since this is the FIRST giveaway I've done on my blog, I've decided to try Punch Tab for entries and winner selection. I'm excited to see how it works. The winner will be able to choose from a Christmas themed or winter themed package.  I love them all! Merry Christmas and good luck everyone! (Scroll down to the bottom of the page to enter.)                  

The giveaway starts today and ends on December 28th at 9:00 pm.

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Quick and Easy DIY Body Lotion Bars

Last year, while searching for some easy recipes for DIY bath and body products, I came across a great idea on Pinterest. Sarah, from Frugal by Choice, had shared a 3-ingredient recipe for making the best body lotion bars on the planet! I made them last year and they were so amazing that I've made them several times since then as birthday gifts, thank you gifts, and again recently for Christmas gifts.

If you are looking for that last minute gift idea, these are quick and easy to make! There are many molds to choose from... gingerbread man mold, christmas tree mold, or something else, and with three main ingredients: beeswax pellets, organic coconut oil, and almond oil  you're ready to begin! 

Gather your ingredients and get started by following the directions below:

Ingredients: I used one cup of each ingredient which made 19 lotion bars. This will vary depending on the
mold you decide to use.

First, melt your beeswax. I used my double boiler and placed it on medium heat.

Next, add the coconut oil and allow it to melt.

Finally, add the almond oil and allow it to melt too.

I placed the melted mixture into a large measuring glass
for ease in pouring. (Otherwise it may have ended up all over the counter! )
If you want to add essential oil, do it now before pouring into the molds.

Choose your mold and pour.

Allow to set for several hours to overnight.

Since I am sharing these as Christmas gifts, I wanted a festive package. I purchased several decorative fabric bags at Wal-Mart (I've also seen them at Hobby Lobby), used some handmade papers for the typed ingredients list, and a gold ribbon to tie the bar to a separate piece of paper. Then I neatly tucked it all inside the gift bag. Adding a Starbuck's gift card made my present complete!
Homemade body lotion bar...ready to be packaged and shared with others!
Packaged and ready to give as a gift!
This is one of my favorite DIY recipes. I hope that you enjoy it as well!

Monday, December 9, 2013

Journal Pages

I've been working on several projects lately, but at the top of my list was finishing LB journal pages. I can't believe it is almost time to bind them all together in a book! So, in preparation, I spent some time yesterday putting the final touches on each page.

This page resulted from the "Favorite Words" lesson by Monica Zuniga. I love how this page turned out.  I used the book, Creative Lettering, to practice some of my lettering techniques. I was even inspired to dream up a few of my own designs. 

"Graphite Feather" lesson by Tamora Laporte....Wow! Another great lesson in which I learned so much...the instructions for creating the feather were perfect. Originally, I hadn't added much color, so I went back and added more...along with a decorative border around the feather. I thought about adding a quote, but then decided against it. Sometimes it is hard to know when to stop. :)

I'm feeling good to have finished two pages, and now really need to start work on some Christmas gifts! I really should do this in the summer when we are on break, but I always seem to get sidetracked!

Anyway, I have decided to sign up for Lifebook 2014!! That's where I'm headed after I finish this post. I can't imagine not participating next year. It has been an absolute joy to work on the projects from 2013 and learn so many different techniques from various teachers. The teacher line up for 2014 looks incredible! Come join us!

Monday, December 2, 2013

Thanksgiving Break

The last several days were filled with family, new recipes....which lead to some great food, art collaborations, and FUN!

When my niece came to our house, she was excited work in my art room. So, I gave her a block of gessoed wood, acrylic paints, stencils, stickers, and collage papers. With a few tips, it wasn't long before her imagination took off and she had a design in place. It was fun to watch her work as her fingers tapped across the wood creating snow-like impressions on the background.

Carly creating a mixed media piece on wood.
While the paint was drying between layers, we took a break to walk the dogs (and burn off a little pumpkin pie!). It was a beautiful day!
                                               Carly and Roger walking the dogs.
Later in the week, I met my parents, sister, and brother-in-law for round 2 of Thanksgiving gatherings. (Poor hubby was sick!) We had an un-traditional meal of Panera Bread and chatted the day away. It was fantastic! I even gave my sister a cool braid! (It reminded me of when we were kids and I often gave her various styles...from braids to side ponytails....ahh, the 80's!)

Today's hairstyle: a "Katniss" braid! I love it!
There was even extra time over the break to work on projects and journal pages! So...I continued my work on the below piece for my sister and also started a new page. 

A work STILL in progress for my sister. 
New work in progress....color to be revealed soon!

I hope each of you also had a wonderful break!