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Herbal Foot Soak

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(Used in this project: Circle Labels and Scallop Tags in Kashmir style.) Whether your feet contend with high heels, hard floors, and long days or get a workout in runners and gardening clogs, they deserve a little pampering, right? When I come in from the garden in my very favorite gardening flip flops I'm sure to leave a dirt trail behind me. But even after a hot shower and a quick sweep, my feet still ache from the pounding they just took. I made up a herbal foot soak just to pamper my … [Read more...]

Pressed Fern Wall Art

Gift for Mother's Day

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(Used in this project: Oval Tags in Spring style and Custom.) Last month, while researching ideas for DIY wall art, I stumbled upon this post for pressed botanical specimens from Design*Sponge that was not only perfect for my walls, but would also make a great gift for anyone who loves plants. It just so happens that my mom is fond of ferns, so I decided to gather some extra fronds from my yard to make her a gift for Mother’s Day this year. If you’re interested in making this project … [Read more...]

Mother’s Day Cheer

Mom's Chocolate Cake Mix

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(Used in this project: Large Photo Labels and Text Labels in Cherish Hearts style with Paper Tin-Tie Bags.) This year, I am celebrating my mom and the special talents she shares with others, by making this chocolate cake mix recipe that she used to love to make. When I first learned to bake, this was the cake my mom taught me. My brothers and I loved it, and I am certain mom and dad did too, because we had it all the time! I never got tired of it. When I grew up, I made it for my children … [Read more...]

Apron in a Jar

A Special Gift for Mother's Day

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(Used in this project: Large Circle Labels and Oval Tags in Briar Rose style with matching Note Cards.) Sometimes the way a gift is packaged can make it just that much more fun. If you have followed some of my posts in the past, I clearly have an affinity for mason jars. In fact, I have a overflowing collection of vintage or unique canning jars that I pick up from thrift shops or garage sales whenever I see them. Some of the jars are just too pretty to be stuffed with salsa and hidden in … [Read more...]

Spa Basket

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When occasions get busy, give the gift that will bring peace of mind: the spa basket. It's a calming gift for hard-working bridesmaids, loyal sisters, and excited mothers. Create a custom-made meditation CD and list the soothing songs with a karmic label. Refresh them with a personalized spritz bottle and a set of hand towels (add ribbon for an extra soft touch). Relax their spirit with aromatherapy candles and a personalized bottle of water. And, if you are a yoga lover, make an extra gift … [Read more...]

Homemade Chocolate Mousse

A perfect Mother's Day treat!

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With Mother’s Day coming up, I’ve been collecting simple gift ideas that would be perfect for my mom this year. I was struggling to make a decision about what to give her until I remembered that one of my mom’s favorite indulgences is chocolate mousse. That’s why I’ve decided to make it from scratch for Mother’s Day this year, and to package it in little jars so she can enjoy it throughout the week. Fortunately for me, sometimes the simplest recipes make the best desserts, which … [Read more...]

Waffle Knit Dishcloths

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Over the summer, I decided to expand my crafty repertoire and explore the world of knitting. Although I've been handy with a crochet hook for years, my proficiency with knitting needles left much to be desired, which was a problem I very much wanted to remedy. So to teach myself how to knit properly, I decided to ease into it with a very small, simple pattern that required both knit and purl stitches: the Waffle Knit Dishcloth by Debbie Andriulli. To improve my skills, I knit one of these … [Read more...]

DIY Tea Bags

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Last week, I saw an amazing tutorial over at A Beautiful Mess for DIY loose leaf teabags, and I knew had to try it for myself! Lucky for me, I just happened to have a box of loose black tea and some pumpkin pie spice lying around the house, so I thought this would be the perfect time of year to make gift boxes of homemade pumpkin spice tea to give to my friends and family for the holidays. This project ended up being super fun, and because I already had everything on hand, the whole thing was … [Read more...]

Homemade Vanilla Extract

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Homemade vanilla extract is not only more delicious than most store bought extracts, but it's also really simple to make. I especially like the process because it gives me something to do with discarded vanilla bean pods once I've scraped the seeds for other recipes. The pods are so full of flavor and aroma that they shouldn't go to waste! To begin, find a bottle that has a tightly fitting lid or cork (I found mine at a thrift store), and clean/sterilize it. Once clean and dry, place your … [Read more...]

Sourdough Starter

A unique baker's gift!

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If you are looking for a thoughtful gift to give a friend who is fond of baking, you may want to consider preparing a culture of sourdough. Sourdough, or wild yeast, has been used for thousands of years to leaven bread (long before packages of commercial yeast were readily available in supermarkets), and can take anywhere from one to three weeks to prepare. You can use a sourdough starter to make all sorts of breads. In fact, anything that can be leavened with commercial yeast will also have … [Read more...]