Sep 24, 2012

Homemade Popsicles

Seven loves popsicles, but I hate giving her sugar! I decided to make up my own popsicle recipe...

We had these nifty little popsicle makers when I was a kid. It was kind of like a small rounded container with a lid and stick already built in. I found one of those at Walmart, but they were $7 and only made 4 popsicles. I decided to pick up this tall ice tray instead:

So I used:
Ice Tray
Aluminum Foil
Popsicle Sticks
 Blueberry Greek Yogurt
Frozen Strawberries

You'll have to forgive me because I didn't measure anything, but somehow I ended up with the right amount for the tray. You can see how full the blender is. I would say overestimate it, and if you end up with too much treat yourself to a smoothie. I did not add any sweetener (other than what was already in the yogurt) and they turned out great, but if you want it a bit sweeter I would recommend honey or stevia.

Pour the mixture over the ice tray.

Cover with aluminum foil

And put a Popsicle stick in each one.

Seven ate them just as quickly as she would and dye-filled-corn-syrup-on-a-sick, and they were a bit smaller and more manageable for her small hands, so I say success!

Yay! Door Headboard!!

I finally got the headboard I've always wanted, made from an old door! Adam gets total credit for this one (except for picking out the door of course, which was obviously the hardest part).

I found the door at the habitat for humanity store (great cheap building supplies) for $50, and after it stood in the corner of our living room for about a month... Adam did the rest. I'm thinking about painting it antique white. I love that we left the door knob and number on there. Apparently it was from an old hotel, kind of creepy right?

We already had freestanding bed rails so he just added some legs to the door, painted them black, and attached them to the rails. If you didn't want the doorknob, you can always turn the door the other way. The mattress would hide the hole.

Paper Feather

I followed the tutorial I found here to make paper feathers. All you need is some paper (I used sheet music, but old book pages would look cool too), scissors, glue, and metal wire. My metal wire wasn't very thick so I used two pieces for each feather.

Cutting two identical pieces of paper the shape that you want your feather, glue them together back to back with the wire in between. Then cut a very thin strip of paper and glue as you wrap it around the remaining wire.

The last step is to cut a bazillion tiny diagonal slits up and down both sides of the feather being careful not to cut all the way to the wire.

Sep 23, 2012

Homemade Laundry Soap

I've seen quite a few posts on Pinterest lately for homemade laundry detergent, so I decided to give it a try. I used the recipe here, but changed a few things.

Here's the original recipe:

  • 1 Cup Borax
  • 1 Cup washing soda
  • natural bar soap
  • essential oil if desired
  • five 1 gallon containers
Grate the soap bar in a pot, add 4 cups water and cook on low until the soap dissolves. Then add borax and washing soda, stir until dissolved and then divided equally among five 1 gallon containers. Fill the rest of the way with water and overnight it will thicken. Use 1/4 cup per load like normal laundry detergent.

I added peppermint and eucalyptus essential oils (which smell amazing!), and I also used a bar of my homemade soap instead of store bought soap (she recommended fels-naptha). We've only used it for 3 loads, but so far so good!

Sep 18, 2012

Homemade Vanilla Extract... Fooor-eeev-eeer

I found this wonderful gem on Pinterest the other day and immediately thought of what nice Christmas presents homemade vanilla would make. Luckily for me Beanilla was having a sale 25 Madagascar vanilla beans for $25 with free shipping! What a steal! And that was just enough to make 8 bottles of vanilla.


When I got the vanilla I was surprised at the quality. These are the strongest smelling, largest, and most plump vanilla beans I have ever seen!

 I got my glass bottles (with a cork for each one) for $1 each at Micheal's, and as you can see I didn't skimp on the quality of vodka either, lol.

Following the recipe, I split each vanilla bean down the middle and put three in each jar with a cup of vodka. I had an extra bean so it went in my sugar jar (yum!).

I was worried about the cork not sealing properly (these babies need to cure for at least 2 months), so I dripped some Christmas-ey looking wax over the top of each one. I was disappointed at how this step turned out, but still excited overall. The recipe says to store them in a cool dark place for at least 2 months shaking the bottle occasionally.

You're supposed to have "never-ending" vanilla extract with this recipe, as long as you top the bottle off with vodka every now and then. One of those bottles will be mine for sure, and I might end up breaking it out earlier than the rest for Thanksgiving this year, but the rest will be waiting until I put Christmas baskets together.

Break Down:
Vanilla Beans $25
Bottles $8
Vodka $12
$45/8= less than $6 each

I'd say not bad for everlasting-vanilla-extract.