DIY Hand Soap

Photo by Engin Akyurt on

Do your hand dry out during the cool winter months of dry air like mine? We love lotion, but with many of us in the house, and an alternative for my boys that do not prefer the lotion, we have found a way to help eliminate some of the use by making our own soaps. For several years I have had the privileged of making our own bar soap. We simply just take a few days throughout the summer months to make long tubes (PVC) of bar soap and slice as needed. It is so nice to have the lathery soft soap that leaves your skin nice and smooth. However, at the sink my kids still prefer the pumped hand soap. Realizing not everyone makes homemade soap, I would love to share a recipe that ANYONE can make in their home.

Start with 1 Cup of distilled water. Carefully AND slowly add 1 Cup of castile liquid soap. (If you just dump it together it will bubble and you will loose some suds.)

Next add 2 Tablespoons of Vitamin E oil, followed by 3 Tablespoons of jojoba oil. ( This can can be substituted, with almond or olive oil- but it does make a different overall soap- but still effective in the element of cleaning purposes.)

Add 30 Drops of tea tree oil and 20 drops of lavender essential oil. Now for this, it can be substituted with herb infused oil. FOR EXAMPLE, my boys soap instead of adding the lavender essential oil, I will often use my herbs infused oil. (Which is high density lavender and calendar.) It makes beautiful and moisturizing hand soap. Feel free to play with the scents a bit too. If lavender is too strong for you, add a few drops of the lemon essential oil or orange, it makes a very refreshing soap as well.

After your oils are together, place cap on your large dispenser and shake. Squirt a little into your hand and place next to your sink for future use. Remember castile soap is a vegetable base so it will not “mix” or blend well. If it sits a long while, it will separate, just shake before use and viola!

Just a couple notes. The Vitamin E and oil are the moisturizers, yes they can be omitted or exchanged. However, just keep in mind it will change the texture on your skin. As far as the essential oils, they can also be omitted or exchanged. However, if experimenting and you have children, keep in mind peppermint and “strong” oils can be harsh on sensitive and young skin, so please avoid them. If you are looking for a scent that is to “wake you up” or refreshing, try a lemon or an orange essential oil, etc.

Happy Soaping & Happy Homemaking!

P.S. This can be mixed in a large bowl, a 5 gallon bucket or in a single use dispenser. It mixed triple batched wonderfully in the clear OJ containers and allows you to make less often and just funnel or refill your household dispensers, depending on the size of your household. Penny’s to make, without all the harsh chemicals on your family, so nice! Don’t forget, you can also make hand pumps out of mason jars or you can purchase them online– and with a little creativity, they do make beautiful gifts too!

80+ DIY Holiday Decor

“Spoiling loved one with good eats, gifts and spending your money on home decor~ season” is HERE! It does not have to be expensive though to have cute, seasonal holiday decor! Who doesn’t love a home set for the season, right? I don’t mean a cluttered mess, I mean beautiful heartwarming decor for the holidays, which double as great hostess gifts too!

We’ve put together over 100+ ways to decorate your home and entryway on a budget. Or, give as cute hostess gifts. Let’s get started…

  1. Greenery basket~A Beautiful tobacco basket is a beautiful accent this season. Perhaps you have one lying around or check your local thrift stores, our local thrift store has baskets year round and during the holidays have them already full of pine cones for under $2.00. Baskets generally go or $.25- 4.00 depending on size. Greenery with accents and a bow to finish is beautiful, refreshing to smell and homemade.

2. Snowman shutters via Pinterest

3. Ornamental Wreath. How about this cute ornament wreath diy by crafted life?

Sugar and Charm

4. DIY Brass Ring Wreath~ A long cute, lasting seasonal addition by Sugar and Charm.

5. Photo Wreath– A personal touch of decorating! Craftingchicks

6. A Kissing Ball~ DIY Pine Cone Kissing Ball.

7. Bottle Brush Trees~ Dipped Bottle Brush Trees, DIY HERE!

8. Bowling Pin Snowmen via Pinterest

9. A Wreath. Not any old wreath, but a DIY Burlap Wreath!

10. DIY Citrus Garland. Slice your citrus fruit. Preheat oven 275 degrees. On lined parchment paper, place your sliced fruit and bake for 3 hours. Cool. With skewer, poke holes and lace with twine! Place on trees, door ways, mantel, etc. A great decoration with wonderful smell!

11. Wooden Outdoor Christmas Lights~ Outdoor decor that is sure to get attention and brighten your home for the holidays. A great idea~ DIY Wooden Christmas Lights!

12. Candles~ DIY Pine Scented Soy Candles.

13. Garland~ Simple~ Pine cones, ribbon and gardland!

14. An Advent Count Down~ Now this is so cute and adorable! Of all the advent ideas, I absolutely love this! Check out this charming idea and many more on a new to me site, sugarandcharm!

15. Wooden Trees~ DIY Mini Wooden Christmas Trees

16. Coffee Filter Garland~ Country Livings DIY Coffee Filter Garland

17. A Christmas Lights Table Display~A new center piece attraction for the table? Or perhaps the mantel display, you name it. This cute display is sure to spruce up your home, desk or office for the holidays. Check out thesweetescape for details.

18. Card Tree Display~ A cute handmade tree with your Christmas cards, stock barrel with wrapped presents or glitter white batting.

19. Festive Pillows~ Homemade Buffalo Plaid Pillows! Check out this great tutorial.

20. A Spool Wreath~ A seamstress in the family? This cute crafting wire wreath is just spools of thread and ribbon.

21. Spray Painted Spoon Trees

22. Marbled ornaments, for many decorations, not just the tree! Festive and simple with this tutorial.

23. Simple. Elegant. Seasonal displays.

24. Felt Garland. Who would of thought how cute, festive and simple felt would be on a tree?

25. Snowflakes~ Cute Popsicle Snowflakes the whole family can get involved in to spruce up for the holidays.

27. Festive Buckets~Decorated galvanized buckets. Festive! Love!

28. Wreath~ A cute DIY life preserver wreath idea!

29. Greenery. A vase of decorated greens. Simple strategic touches are the best! The greenery in an open space is sure to spruce any room this holiday. Dried citrus and greens, I love this cute idea! Check out cheetahisthenewblack for more ideas.

30. Festive Frames

31. Burlap~ Lighted Burlap Garland

32. Candy Canes~ DIY PVC Candy Canes that light up, check out DIY Show Off!

33. Snow Candle Holder by crafts-for-allseasons!

34. Wooden Snow Crew made of 2X4s by Keeping it simple.

35. Snowman Wreath~ DIY tutorial by Trendy Tree

36. Pallet Christmas Tree~ A Festive and simple wooden pallet Christmas tree by making it in the mitten.

37. Stocking Holder~ A quick addition to any home by Dukes & Duchesses, a DIY Stocking Hanger!

38. Decorated Lanterns. This idea came from dimples and tangles. Perhaps you already have the materials. Check out her page for other great decorating ideas to get your creativity flowing. If you do not have lanterns, check out my diy craft link here of a fun building project to do this season with the kids.

39. Skate Wreath~ An Adorable Ice Skate Wreath.

40. Cute Santa Logs~ A quick DIY from Smart Girls.

41. A Pallet Tree~ This cute Christmas tree tutorial can be found at Jolene’s Crafting!

42. Decorated Tree Frame~ This is another favorite of mine this holiday season. So CUTE & she makes it look so simple! Check out this knock-off Crate and Barrel Ornament by Maryann!

43. Holiday Logs~ Pick your favorite holiday character and large log, then head over to hip2save for the directions!

44. Self Decorated Christmas Shutter~ via Pinterest.

45. A Candy Cane Lit Walkway!

46. Snowman Mason Jar~For yarn lovers everywhere!

47. Lowes Pyramid Outdoor Lights for on this Lowes DIY.

48. Salty Jars~ DIY Epsom Salt Luminaries by Remodelacasa!

49. Snowmen~ Snowmen logs are simple and cute. My kids also have used paint sticks identically decorated for doorknob hangers.

50. & 51. Decorated Birch, Light Box, AND MORE. Many great ideas for that extra rustic and cute flare of holiday decorating this season! Check out unskinnyboppy for more details!

52. DIY Village Luminary~ Hold on, here’s another one the whole family will love. A Christmas Village Silhoutte Luminary Jar. Head over here to check out this DIY!

53. Christmas Card Holder~ Check out Shanty Chic for this simple, but super cute and festive, holiday Christmas Card Holder!

54. Snowy Pine Cone Luminary~ This cute winter luminary by Amanda can be found here!

55. DIY Outdoor Stars for the holidays from dukemanorfarm.

56. “Joy To the World”~ Holiday light up sign by uncommondesignsonline!

57. Twig Stars by has these simple, festive stars you and your whole family would enjoy making to spruce things up a bit for the holidays Check them out!

58. A Beautiful Mantel Display~ “O Come Let Us Adore Him” by Kimsixfix!

59. Centerpieces~ Over 50 cheap and DIY options for seasonal centerpieces found here.

60. Paper Snowflake Decorations by the handcraftedlife.

61. Vintage Luminaries~ by NellyVintageHome

62. Centerpieces and woodsy Holiday Art ideas can also be found here.

63. Repurposed Muffin Tin Decor~ via Pinterest

64. Decorated Vintage Lantern~ via Etsy.

65. Hand Painted Christmas Tree Cut outs~ via etsy.

66. Decorated Vintage Cheese Grater~ via Etsy.

67. Decorated Tin~ via Pinterest

68. Birch Decor~ Via hometalk!

69. Window Decor Piece~ for sale via Etsy.

70. Table Vase Decor~ Via Pinterest

71. Hanging Stars~ for sale via Etsy

72. Window Strings~ Via Pinterest.

73. Mini Wreaths~ DIY Mini Garland wreaths w/ ribbon!

74. Door Hanger or Ornament Cones

75. Chalkboard~ Don’t forget to use your chalkboard for a classy stylish addition to your decor!

76. Wall Tree~ Virtually any decoration work! Even sea shells are beautiful with that drift wood or birch sticks- depending on what’s available!

77. Birch Log Fire

78. Wooden Spoon Fun!

79. Signs~ What better way than paint your own signage!

80. Birch Candles~ Simple drill and place candle within birch lights!

81. Spoon Fun~ Decorate your favorite character on a bent spoon, via ebay!

82. Birch Stacked log Or Centerpieces for a table~ via Etsy

83. Stocking Hanger from reclaimed wood by Beyond the Picket Fence.

84. Wooden Spoon Decor for the tree, kitchen or wall!

85. Painting~ a Picture can seem simple, but that’s really all it takes. Photo via Pinterest.

I hope this sparks some ideas for your holiday decor! Have fun & make memories! We will be back with an update and a few more!!!

DIY Herbal Infused Oil

It’s that time of year when everything is quickly put in the root cellar, canned, frozen or dried. One of the last herbs of the season in cooler climates is Golden Rod. Yes, you can prepare and pick most summer. However, that last batch blooms fullest right before the weather turns. We scramble to get as much picked in between harvests as possible. Here is a great way to use it and your summer dried herb and flower stash.

One of the simplest ways to incorporate herbs is by placing herbs in your favorite oils. No matter the purpose for your herb infused oil, you need two main ingredients.

  1. Carrier Oil
  2. Dried Herbs

1. Pick a carrier oil. Now this is important! Know your oils, if your experimenting, a quality olive oil makes great salve and oil for soaps. Depending on your goal with the oil once it’s infused is the key to selection. Are you planning to make: soap, lotion, salve, a soar muscle rub, skin cream, balm, sugar scrub? There are so many options of small topical or skin care oils (emu, almond oil, etc.), to basic oils for rubs or cracked skin. (Olive, palm, coconut oil, etc.)

2. Place your herbs in a sterilized jar (make sure it is dry, no water).

3. After selected herbs are chosen, cover with your desired oil. Make sure to completely cover the herbs and they are below the oil. (Below: examples of infused oil) The first picture is the completed infused oil I am beginning to pour off to make Balm of Gilead salve.

4. Let sit in a warm sunny area & Infuse!

Have fun and enjoy your creations! I will post a list of tried recipes we enjoy, look for my post soon!