Sunday, January 13, 2013

HomeMAKER: EASY DIY Laundry Detergent

Finally! I am going to dive into DIY home solutions.  I have been wanting to do this for so long, and since Jason and I just started our home together, I figured this would be the perfect time to start. I am going to start my adventure with laundry detergent.  I love the idea because you know exactly what you are washing your clothes with, you can pick your own scent combinations, but most of all, it is extremely cost effective.  I didn't really how cost effective until I actually dove in and tried it myself...HERE follows my experience. :)

First, I perused Pinterest and other google searches until I found a recipe that matched my need.

1.  Clean smelling laundry.
2.  Stain removal.
3.  Cost effectiveness.
4.  Large amount.
5.  EASY, low commitment. :)

I adjusted the recipe I found because it made 5 gallons and that would last me and my tiny family about 5 years so I chose to adjust to make about a gallon. 

Here is what you need:

2 2lb boxes of Baking Soda
3 5 oz bars of Fels Naptha (or Zote soap, depending on your WalMart)
1 1.3 lb tub of Oxi Clean
1 4lb 12 oz box of Borax  (will only use half)
1 3lb 7oz box of Washing Soda ( will only use half)
1 28 oz Purex Crystals
Note:  The last two ingredients are used for tons of DIY cleaning solutions, so you only need half the box but there is so much to do with the rest of the box!
I went to WalMart to buy my ingredients because my Target did not have them all and I wanted to "One Stop" shop.  Here is my receipt to prove how little all this costs, and I didn't even have any coupons!

Step 1:  Shred the Fels Naptha soap bars.  I used my food processor but you can also hand grate.   BTW this stuff smells absolutely amazing, so clean and fresh, yum.  Don't worry, it cleans off easily, remember, it is just soap. :)
Step 2:  Mix everything else together in a big bucket, I used a new mop bucket. My husband had to step in because it was going to take me forever to get it all mixed, he was excited!

Step 3:  Use a paper cup to pour your mixture into the Purex bottle, this will be your "Everyday Use" container, refill this as needed, fill the cap for each load.  You really only need 1-2 Tablespoons.  I don't have it here but I made a pretty label for my Purex bottle. :)  Pour the rest in gallon jugs or just keep it in your bucket. :)

How easy was that?!
Because I majored in Math and I love saving money I did the calculations on this money saving DIY.
A Tide bottle for 32 loads costs $12.99 at Target, on sale.
A Downy bottle for 120 loads costs $8.99 at Target, on sale.
At these prices 120 loads of Laundry costs $57.70.
All the ingredients (Plus extra unused Borax and Washing Soda) cost me $20.47.
This "Cocktail" of ingredients made a littlre more than a gallon of detergent, at 1-2 tablespoons a load that is 270-280 loads of laundry!!!
Savings = $112.24!

Monday, June 25, 2012

Undereye Circles...A Cure?

So last week I decided to try and take on those pesky under eye dark circles.  I have always had a problem with these and have tried sooo many products and I really didn't see many results.  So I decided to test two products; one on each eye.  Check it out here. 


Only nine days later I took all the makeup off and asked a very close friend who had never read the blog, "Do my under eye circles look different from each other?"  She said. "Yea, the one on your right looks lighter and less sunken in."  Well the winner is.... It's Potent Eye Benefit Cream.

I noticed that the Benefit dried quickly enough that I could immediately move into my normal makeup routine while the Clinique was so light and runny that I had to fan it dry.

Also,  the eye treated with benefit had fuller skin with less wrinkles whereas the other eye was still full of tiny wrinkles and creases.

Go get yourself some!  If it doesn't work for you, Ulta has a 60 day product guarantee and they will give you back a full refund!

Friday, June 22, 2012

How I Get....My Hair Did.

So, one of the many blessings in my life is having the ability to get my hair done about every 8 weeks.  I absolutely adore getting my hair done, does anyone else feel this way?  I love getting my hair washed, the color getting updated, getting that "just done, soft hair" feeling; but most of all I love my hair girl, Shannon! About five years ago, a girl with chicken fat yellow, elbow length hair came to her and said, "Fix this", and she did!  Now I am addicted to her! She moves salons, I move salons. 

One of my biggest recommendations for a hair stylist is get someone you get along with.  Many times, someone you can get along with and will listen to you, will make you so much happier with the finished product.  Also, it helps to get along with someone if you have to spend 3 hours looking at them in the mirror.

I am getting married in December so I have been "grooming" my hair so that it looks good for my big day.  I am such a girl, I know.  I decided to keep it blonde with two highlights for every low light.  (I say I decided, but really Shannon decided and I agreed.)  She also recommended that I cut 2 inches off and keep it healthy.  She always tells me that sometimes if hair grows to fast it doesn't grow healthy.  I believe her but I just want long hair.  :)  I guess I'll just have to keep waiting.

I took some pics of my new hair but, of course, I did not refresh makeup so my face is not up to par with the gorgeous hair!

If you live anywhere in North Florida, you need to see Shannon. Right?!

Facebook her salon HERE

Facebook her HERE

Not only did she do my hair but she FINALLY convinced me to purchase the secret ingredient to beautiful hair, Moroccan Oil.  She always put this divinely smelling oil in my hair and it does WONDERS, even with just one use.  So I purchased a bottle for only $15!  She said it will last forever because you do not need a lot to get the look and feel you want.  Contact her if want some and want her to style your new "DO".

If you don't live in the area, here is a link to this secret ingredient.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Homemade Chikfila Nugs!

Picture this:  It's Sunday afternoon, still to early for dinner but you are definitely needing something to eat.  You squint your eyes look up to the right and tilt your head, (This is what I do when I think about food), then you realize, "MMM Chikfila would be amazing!" A common mistake we all make at one point or another, NOOOOO Chikfila is closed.  Upon this happening to me last Sunday I decided to scour the Internet and look for my own recipe for that 12 count nugget.  Of course, my search began on Pinterest, the end all be all of idea finding (and time wasting). 

I found this recipe and decided, yep, I am going to try this. I made some changes so pay attention closely.  I in no way am perfect in the kitchen, so make changes as you see fit.

Things you will need:

2 skinless and boneless chicken breasts      
1 cup milk
1 egg
1 1/4 cups flour
2 Tbsp powdered sugar
2 Tsp of salt
1 Tsp of pepper
Olive/canola/peanut oil

A couple hints on this:

I did not soak the nuggets for more than 30 minutes even though I recommended longer.  (I was just too hungry and did not plan well!)

Don't cook to many nuggets at once because they can burn easily if you cook them too long without flipping.

When the nuggets are done let them drain on a paper towel to get some of the excess oil off.

BTW: Does the corn look good?  Well it was pretty much the easiest thing I ever made.  Click here for the recipe.


Monday, June 18, 2012

How I Do...EASY Corn on the Cob

Something interesting about me? I love corn! I will eat corn anyway it could possibly be cooked; so you should find it surprising that up until a couple weeks ago, I had NO idea had to make corn on the cob.  It was on sale at Publix so I bought a whole bunch and thought, "Yes, I am going to learn to cook this".  I have to admit, Jason helped me create this recipe. (But I cooked it all by myself.)

Seriously, I am not a chef, but this is so do-able.  You can choose any spices you like and the great part is, since you used olive oil, you don't even need to roll the corn in butter! It gets so juicy and flavorful!  (Of course, butter always makes things better, so adding it is totally allowed.)

Okay if that wasn't easy enough, then I don't know what is!  Here is a little bit more description.

1.  Put your rinsed/husked piece of corn on a square of foil.

2.  I chose to put on olive oil, garlic salt, and seasoned salt. I could add these 3 things to anything and make it better.

3.  Pour a fast line of oil on the cob, then sprinkle the spices generously. Wrap the corn up like a burrito, making sure that its tight and won't leak in the oven.

4.  Cook in the oven for 30 minutes at 350 degrees.  YUM! You WILL LOVE this corn.

Watch out later this week because I made homemade Chik-fila nuggets to go with this corn!

Sunday, June 17, 2012

How I Run...the trails.

This weekend I got to go visit my in-laws.  Always lots of fun and good food to eat!  One of my favorite things to do is run so, of course, Jennifer (sis-in-law) and I convinced Jason to come with us.  She wanted him to come because she wanted to spend time with her brother, I just wanted him there in case we had an unfortunate encounter with a snake.  Entrance of the trail? Photo op!

I did not look this good, nor was I as fresh looking four and half miles later.  Jason wasn't to happy either.  I love running because I always feel that sense of accomplishment; like I want to karate kick- chop the air and say, "Take that fat! How do you like that?"  I don't feel like the whole time, usually around mile two I think to myself, "Why do I enjoy this? Why am I doing this? Is it worth it?"  Then I finish and I feel amazing!

Not only do I get to run when we go visit but Debbie (Jason's mom), Jennifer, and I get to go shopping! We don't just mosey on to the country store; we make our way around all the good stores and find all the best deals!  Debbie is the woman you want to call if you are looking for any coupon, for any store.

Don't we loook nice.

(Those are my new shorts from Target, $5!! I am very excited.)

Then we played with our hair.

What a fun day in at the in-laws!

Saturday, June 16, 2012

How I Run...a product showdown.

So, summer has started and I am wearing less and less makeup each day.  Living in Florida its so dang hot and once you have that summer glow makeup seems superfluous.  When I do wear makeup I wear solely Clinique.  I have very sensitive skin and I have tried all those "sensitive skin, all natural, bare" makeups, nope, all have caused crazy breakouts and a cycle of bad skin that takes weeks to undo.  My main problem is these darned dark under-eye circles.  I always put on my clinique concealer specifically made for under eyes and dark circles and I will not leave the house without it on.  Well, I am tired of it!  I searched many blogs and online reviews of under eye creams and who really knows what works? So, I did what any product-loving girl would do...I went to Ulta.

Well, there is just to many choices.  I don't know why I thought going there would EVER be a good idea, unless I knew EXACTLY what I was going in for.  UH.  Well, I got a nice little bag full of stuff. I am going to stop pretending that I am upset about this now.

The two products I have chosen for the showdown are Cliniqe all about eyes and benefit It's Potent

How will I test to see which one works better?  Well, on my left eye I will use the Clinique and on my right eye I will use the benefit.  I will post updates and let you know which one actually works.

Both products are a cream consistency and have 2 oz of product in the cute little jars.  (however the benefit jar is cuter)  I have noticed the benefit is a little thicker and the Clinique takes longer to dry and really "soak in". 

Ulta was doing a promotion and when I bought my cute little "It's Potent" I also got these three great products to try.  An added bonus! 

So here it with no makeup...why am I putting this out for the world to see...I guess to keep the integrity of the product showdown.

Remember the grand purpose of this is to make those half moons smaller...hopefully one of these products really works!
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