DIY: My Second Attempt (Lavender Bath-Soak).

Need a quick gift idea? Or just looking for a simple self-care remedy?
Try this!

DIY/diːʌɪˈwʌɪ/noun

Abbreviation for: do-it-yourself:

The activity of decorating, building, and making repairs at home by oneself rather than employing a professional.

‘DIY avoids the difficult relationship between householder and professional decorator.’

Who’s up for round two?!

Okay, so I know I only just did a DIY post on the planters (see here).

But I really wanted to share another DIY project I did at the same time: Homemade Bath-Soak in cute little jars.

I decided to make Bath-Soak for a couple of reasons:

1. It seemed super easy; &

2. It’s a cliche, but timeless gift idea

And if truth be told, I was running out of ideas on what to get individual people.

I settled on the following sites for inspiration, which I found by roaming around on Google and Pinterest:

MY INSPIRATION CAME FROM:

Source: https://www.soapqueen.com/bath-and-body-tutorials/lavender-bath-salts/

I didn’t really know where to start when I started looking at making Bath Soak, so I just started Googling and roaming around on Pinterest until I found something I liked.

Soap Queen’s Lavender recipe and method seemed relatively straightforward and manageable, which was great for someone like me.

Although everything was in Imperial measurements, Soap Queen’s step-by-step page was a great starting point for me.

Soap Queen also had a similar recipe, but for Rose Bath Salt, which I also sussed out.

I decided to stick with Lavender, because I wanted to use Essential Oils rather than Fragrance Oils (as they’re much better for you), and Rose Essential Oil is quite pricey.

The Spruce Crafts kind of confirmed to me that there are really only a few ingredients needed for Bath Soaks and Salts, and that less is more.

This website recommended using food colouring, but I decided against that for my final recipe, as I didn’t want any of it transferred to my family and friends’ bodies.

I really liked this website in general, as it has so many cute DIY projects – I’ll definitely be visiting again to get some new ideas!

And with that, I got started!

LAVENDER BATH-SOAK RECIPE:

INGREDIENTS:

1 Cup of Pure Epsom Bath Salts

1 Cup of Pink Himalayan Rock Salt

1 Tablespoon of Bi-Carbonate Soda

1/2 Cup of Dried Lavender

20 Drops of Lavender Essential Oil

10 Drops of Peppermint Essential Oil

*Simply mix these ingredients into a bowl and you’ll have roughly 630g of Bath Soak.

WHAT?

WHERE?

HOW MUCH?

Much like my Planter Pot project, I wanted to keep the cost of my DIY Bath Soak down as much as possible.

I wanted this Bath Soak to be as luxurious, organic and simple as possible – without costing an arm and a leg.

The best thing about this recipe is that it can be changed to suit your needs – simply adding different essential oils, salt-types and petals can give it a completely new look.

The below gives you an idea of how much individual products are – you may already have some of these at home (like I did), which is great!

WHATWHEREHOW MUCH
Salts&CO. Pure Epsom Bath Salts 1.5kgCostco/ Nocelle Foods$10
SAXA Natural Pink Himalayan Rock Salt 500g (x2)Coles$4 ea
McKenzies Bi-Carbonate Soda 500gColes$2.40
Dried Lavender 500gIshka/ Happy Herbs/ N-Essentials$4 – $6
Lavender Essential Oil*DoTerra/ Ishka$25 – $30
Peppermint Essential Oil*DoTerra/ Ishka$20 – $30
Clip Lid Glass Jar Kmart$1 ea
*I use DoTerra Essential Oil (CPTG: Certified Pure Therapeutic Grade) which is pricier, however once bought, a bottle lasts a LONG time.

NOTE: The above table has a couple of options for those looking for cheaper alternatives/ similar products. The below breakdown is based on what it cost me personally – this might differ for some.

PRICE COMPARISON

NOTE: For those interested, below is a price break-down of everything I bought – this will obviously change depending on how much you plan on making… I made 12 jars and had roughly enough for 2 jars left over (I kept that separate and used it myself!).

In total, I bought: 12 jars from Kmart ($12), 1 bag of Epsom Salts ($10), 2 bags of Himalayan Salt ($8), 1 box of Bi-Carb Soda ($2.40), 2 packets of Dried Lavender ($8), 1 bottle of Lavender Essential Oil ($25) and 1 bottle of Peppermint Essential Oil ($25).

HOMEMADE BATH SOAKSTORE/ MARKET BOUGHT BATH SOAK
12 Jars = $90.4012 Jars (Average RRP of $15) = $180

This means the total price for each DIY jar came to half the price of store/ market bought bath soak, at $7.50 a jar. Stoked!

Finished Product:

NOTE: I decided to spruce my little jars up a bit – I didn’t really get many photos of them before I wrapped them for Christmas – but stickers, stamps and twine are always a good choice!

DIY: My First Attempt (Planter Pots).

A cute, affordable and fun DIY project – these planter pots make the perfect gifts for any occasion!

DIY/diːʌɪˈwʌɪ/noun

Abbreviation for: do-it-yourself:

The activity of decorating, building, and making repairs at home by oneself rather than employing a professional.

‘DIY avoids the difficult relationship between householder and professional decorator.’

DIY Projects never really appealed to the laziness in me. However, I decided to bite the bullet and give it a try.

For those of you who know me, you’ll know that my partner is obsessed with plants. We even have a walk-in greenhouse in our house’s sun-room.

So while I was watching him tend to his plants one morning, I had a great idea for a DIY Project/ Christmas Gift Idea.

Why not make some pretty pots for all those pretty plants?

So I started Googling ideas for DIY pot plants, to get some ideas. I found so many amazing DIY ideas, but I am a rookie, so I started filtering out some of the harder looking projects and opted for something more ‘beginner-friendly’.

I settled on the following sites for inspiration, which I found via Pinterest and a few blogs (see below):

MY INSPIRATION CAME FROM:

This was a site that I found really helpful, as it had a list of all the materials I would need, plus a step-by-step guide (very handy for those who have not used a hot-glue gun since Kindergarten).

I chose this kind of style for my pots, because I think they look super beachy and they give off a real hand-made, ‘market’ type of vibe.

Although I chose slightly different lettering etc., this was a really awesome guide for me to stick to.

The next thing I needed on my DIY journey was a bit of ‘plant pun’ inspiration.

I wanted to find some cute little plant related quotes for the pots (Pinterest delivered the goods!) and get some ideas on different lettering.

This little blog page really helped me to start thinking of my own puns and quotes.

The last source of inspiration is a local business in Adelaide, South Australia (where I live). Unfortunately, they have decided to close their business for a while and focus on personal things.

A few of my old work colleagues had pot plants from Rub a Dub Shrub, and the plants always looked so nice in their offices!

I’ve also seen these guys around at local markets etc., and really loved the designs and puns they came up with.

And with that, I got started!

WHAT?

WHERE?

HOW MUCH?

So for me, a really big part of this project was to keep the cost down – I wanted to make some really cute presents for Christmas and birthday gifts, without it costing me a fortune and defeating the purpose.

I wanted these pot plants to be cheaper to make than it would be to go to the market and purchase something similar.

WHAT

Terracotta Pots

Spray Paint

Twine/ Jute Rope

Hot Glue Gun

Glue Gun Refills

Stamp Set

Clear Coat Spray

Plants

WHERE

Bunnings

Bunnings

K-mart

K-mart

K-mart

K-mart

Bunnings

Cuttings from Partner

HOW MUCH

$1.60 ea

$12.88

$4 ea

$8

$3 ea

$8

$17.98

Free

PRICE COMPARISON:

In total, I bought 15 terracotta pots ($24), 2 cans of spray paint ($25.76), 2 rolls of twine ($8), 1 hot glue gun ($8), 3 glue gun refills ($9), 1 stamp set ($8) and 1 can of clear coat spray ($17.98).

So the total for 15 completed pots ended up being:

15 DIY/ HOMEMADE POTS:

TOTAL =

15 Home-made Pots:

$102.74

15 STORE BOUGHT POTS:

TOTAL =

15 x $27.95 (RRP Rub a Dub Shrub):

$419.25

That price comparison was crazy to me – the DIY pots ended up costing roughly $6.85 each to make. And they turned out very, very well (for a first-time DIYer, anyway)!

THE PROCESS:

STEP ONE:

Wash the pots, let them dry, and then spray paint them with the white paint.

My partner and I ended up putting down a plastic sheet and spraying all the pots on that – we gave them 2 coats of paint in the end, which seemed to work fine.

IDEA: You could always change up the colours, or create stenciled patterns if you were feeling creative – I went with plain white to accentuate the black lettering I was planning on using.

STEP TWO:

Use the hot glue gun to add the twine to the top lip of the pots.

I struggled at first with the glue gun and where to start with the twine, but after a bit of trial and error, managed to work it out and create something that looked reasonable.

TIP: Start the twine from the top of the lip, but don’t start from the inside of the top, or the pot will look wonky. Pull the twine tight as you go and try and push the twine together as much as possible, this helps lessen any gaps in between the twine.

STEP THREE:

After you’ve let the twine and glue set, you can then add the lettering.

I used a generic stamp set from K-mart, nothing fancy – with normal stamp ink.

I picked out some of the plant puns I liked and thought up a few different quotes to stamp onto the pots (see image).

TIP: Stamping can be a bit hit-and-miss in terms of getting the lettering straight etc., but I’ve found that having lettering that’s a little bit wonky can add to the ‘home-made’ touch. But if you’re really not happy with your stamping or have made a mistake, I found I could wipe off the ink with a tissue or earbud if it hadn’t dried yet!

STEP FOUR:

Clear-coat your pots.

I’m not sure if everyone does this, but I didn’t want to risk the ink on the sides of the pots running if someone watered their plants and accidentally spilled some.

I used the Boyle Gloss Spray Sealer.

Clear-coating/ sealing is a good thing to do anyway, as this will help protect the pots from weathering, ageing and wear and tear.

TIP: I used a few coats of the clear-coat on my pots – simply hold the can at around 30cm distance and spray all over – it doesn’t matter if you get some on the twine as it is colourless.

STEP FIVE:

Pot your plants.

I let my partner do this, as he is the expert when it comes to plants, but choosing the plants is completely up to you.

We put a variety of different plants in, such as Ivy, Aloe Vera and plants that I don’t know the names of (I’ll have to add them in another post).

IDEA: Succulents are a great idea for this, as they are hardy – so even your friends and family who aren’t ‘green-thumbs’ can enjoy a long-living plant. They’re also quite cheap (or you can get cuttings from someone’s garden for free). Plus there are plenty of succulent-related puns to pair them with!

STEP SIX:

Wrap/ decorate your finished product!

I decided it would be better not to fully wrap the plants, for obvious reasons, and decided to put a little bow on the pot instead, and pop them into Christmas ‘gift-bags’ I got from the Reject Shop (2-pack for $2.50).

It’s really up to you how you decide to wrap/decorate your pots – but there’s plenty of ideas on Pinterest – click here for some ideas.

Finished Product:

(Thanks to my sister Nikyta for taking some photos of the pots I gave her!)

Well, I did it – I finally finished my first DIY project! It was so much fun to have a creative outlet and be able to give them as gifts for Christmas.

Hopefully over the next couple of months I can try out a few other DIY ideas and share my results with you.

Let me know if you’ve done something similar, or try out the above – I’d love to see your results!

Logo

Done & Dusted!

Quote Of The Day 25/12/2019

WEDNESDAY, 25/12/2019:

Source: https://www.pinterest.com.au/pin/209347082666149356/

‘The real test of love is loving those who we feel are the hardest ones to love.’

– Criss Jami

Quote Of The Day 23/12/2019

MONDAY, 23/12/2019:

Source: https://www.pinterest.com.au/pin/364650901076352985/

‘Believe that you can make your way. Or don’t. Either way, you are right.’

– Jennifer Donnelly

Editor’s Note: NOVEMBER.

Christmas is HOW FAR away?!

Excuse me, but where has 2019 gone?!

It feels like only yesterday we were welcoming in 2019 with fireworks in the sky and drinks in our hands… And now we have to start thinking about putting the Christmas tree back up!

They say time flies when you’re having fun… but I think time just flies in general these days – even the days I spend in bed depression-napping seem to be over so quick I can barely remember when I had a shower last.

It’s always this time of year that I start to get both anxious, but also more relaxed.

Yes I know that doesn’t make sense. On the one hand, there are bills to think about, the cost of holiday-time (presents, parties and putting up with undesirable family reunions). And on the other hand, November always promises nice weather (in Australia at least), beers by the beach and longer days, with prettier sunsets.

Green Christmas Tree With String Lights
Photo Of Pineapple Wearing Black Aviator Style Sunglasses And Party Hat

‘Tis The Season…

This year, I’ve decided to cut back on all the novelty crap that comes along with the Christmas Season.

Yes, I’ll still put a Christmas tree up. Yes, I’ll probably dress my sausage dogs in Elf outfits. And yes, I probably will still gain 5 kilograms on Christmas Day from binge eating prawns, cherries, ham and chocolate coins from my siblings’ stockings.

But what I won’t be doing is bothering with the things that don’t contribute to my mental health or happiness.

I’m talking about things like putting up with toxic family members. Or buying unnecessary plastic crap to fill stockings and make the pile under my Christmas tree look bigger or better than someone else’s.

Or wasting money on presents that get opened and forgotten about the same day.

I’ve decided to make a small list of things I want to make happen this Christmas, to truly get back to what Christmas used to mean to me:

  • Don’t Blow The Budget
  • Stop Competing With The Jones’
  • Be Environmentally Aware
  • Appreciate Moments

1. Don’t Blow The Budget…

There have been so many past years where I have spent hundreds, if not thousands of dollars on presents for people.

What I have noticed over the past few years though, is that the list of people never gets shorter, only bigger.

And people’s expectations never get lower, only higher.

Two Gray-and-green Christmas-themed Gift Boxes

So this year, as I start planning my list of people who I want to gift a present to, I’ve decided to:

  • Make some of the presents myself;
  • Cull the list – some people could probably just get a well-written card, and;
  • Stick to my list – no ‘extra’ presents

Maybe that seems a little ‘un-Christmas-y’ to some, but for those who know me, know that I always go out of my way to make everyone’s Christmas amazing. I spend extra on presents. I fill stockings that I bought for siblings I shouldn’t have to look after (but obviously do). I do the whole song and dance.

But the last few years of doing this has left me with a feeling of being unfulfilled, broke and just downright exhausted.

Woman Taking Photo Of Christmas Tree

2. Stop Competing With The Jones’…

Just because someone has it ‘better’ than you doesn’t mean what you have isn’t perfect as it is.

In this age of social-media and instant gratification, it’s so easy to get caught up in the hype of Christmas time.

We don’t need new decorations every year. We don’t need to tell everyone how much we’ve spent on each child or loved one. We don’t need to compete with anyone, in actuality.

Christmas is a time of love, understanding, peace and coming together with people we care about.

Who the hell cares if Sally down the road bought her daughter an iPhone? Who cares if the neighbour up the street has ‘outdone themselves’ this year with the decorations.

I certainly don’t anymore. I just appreciate the fact I have people I can share my life with.

Sometimes we need to remember that there are so many people worse-off than us. People who don’t have family to spend Christmas with. Single mothers who can’t afford to buy their kids the latest gadgets. We need to appreciate what we have.

3. Be Environmentally Aware…

As the future looms ever closer, my household is more aware than ever of the Climate Crisis on hand.

So this year, we’re planning on reducing, reusing and recycling where we can.

That means things like: using paper wrapping. Not buying cracker that contain little plastic toys. Composting leftovers. Gifting things that help the environment, such as plants, eco-friendly bath-bombs, and not buying plastic and tinsel decorations where we can.

There are so many ways to help the environment – but sometimes it takes a conscious choice.

Photo of Landfill
Round Gold-colored Analog Watch With Pink Strap

4. Appreciate Moments…

That’s what Christmas is all about, right? Spending time with loved ones? Catching up. Taking a break.

The other day, I drove my sister (who I look after) to IKEA to buy a new mirror and clothes rack, because we had moved house. Then I spent a good chunk of time sitting on her bedroom floor helping her build them. I love helping her. I love her. And I love building IKEA furniture.

But after we’d put it all together, and helped her hang her clothes, she did something that I loved so much, that I went away and cried (don’t tell her that though).

She came up to me, gave me a hug, and said: ‘Thank-you, I couldn’t have done this without your help.’

And maybe I’m a cry-baby, but that moment was so amazing. It was so nice to be appreciated for a small gesture. And that’s what I want my Christmas this year to be all about.

The small things. The moments that make you tear up a little. The warm, fuzzy feelings that make Christmas feel like you’re 7 again, when you woke up in the morning and Santa drank the beer you left out for him and his reindeer left a half-eaten carrot on the dining room table.

I’m sure I will talk to lots of you beforehand, but I hope you guys have a wonderful November in the lead up to Christmas! And for my American friends, I hope you enjoy Thanksgiving and get to spend time with your loved ones – because that’s what this time of year is all about.

Until next time! x

10 Holiday Gift Ideas For Dragon Boaters

Here are 10 great gift ideas for the paddlers in your life!

It’s that time of year again…!

… And if it’s that time of year again, that means: PRESENTS!

You’re probably already aware that some of us are decidedly more difficult to buy for… AKA the Dragon Boaters among us.

You know the ones… The ones that don’t seem to have anything else to talk about besides paddling, paddling and more paddling.

So if you’re stumped for things to buy your Dragon Boating loved ones this holiday season, stress no more! Here are 10 great gift ideas for the paddlers in your life:

Number One:

Source: https://www.hornetwatersports.com/products/dragon-boat-bag

A PADDLE BAG.

Help your loved ones keep their paddles safe, while also carrying them around in style.

This paddle bag from Hornet Watersports is tried and tested – I personally bought one for a paddling friend, and they loved it.

It fits most standard paddles, has a stitched logo and a front padded pocket to keep your stuff safe.

What: Dragon Boat Paddle Bag (Black)

Price: $50

Where: Hornet Watersports

Number Two:

WATER SHOES.

Sick of stinky sneakers and damp socks lying around the house? Aqua shoes are the perfect alternative – plus they’re comfy and quick drying!

I have a pair myself, and they have lasted me over a year now. After training I simply give them a rinse or throw them through the washing machine and voila! Done.

What: Men’s Prologue 1.0 Round Toe Aqua Shoes Black 5

Price: $23.99

Where: BCF Australia

Source: https://www.bcf.com.au/p/mens-prologue-1.0-round-toe-aqua-shoes/M55996801.html?dwvar_M55996801_color=Black&cgid=BCF061015#sz=12&start=14

Number Three:

Source: https://www.lego.com/en-us/product/dragon-boat-race-80103

LEGO DRAGON BOAT MODEL.

If you’re after something more novelty, this is certainly a fun idea! LEGO released a limited edition Dragon Boat Set, and they’ve been incredibly popular!

What: Chinese Dragon Boat Race 2019 Asia Exclusive

Price: $70 (varies depending on availability)

Where: Amazon

Number Four:

SHAKTI MAT LIGHT.

This is always a popular gift!

Promoting blood circulation, relaxation and restoration, this is the perfect gift for those suffering from sore, stiff or aching muscles.

What: Shakti Mat Light

Price: $69

Where: Shakti Mats Australia

Source: https://www.shaktimats.com.au/collections/all/products/shakti-mat-light-yellow

Number Five:

Source: https://www.underarmour.com.au/en-au/ua-undeniable-duffel-4.0-medium-duffle-bag/192810227774.html?dwvar_192810227774_size=OSFA&dwvar_192810227774_color=290&&cid=PLA%7cau%7call%7cggl%7call%7call%7call%7csmartshopping%7call%7call%7cPR&gclid=CjwKCAjw0vTtBRBREiwA3URt7haoTo1gcPYHX7N-Sp19fvGsf2lvlZgEowGOmPkncb1vJk2tfKqcRRoC6o8QAvD_BwE&gclsrc=aw.ds

WATERPROOF GYM BAG.

There’s nothing worse than carting around a damp, stinky bag filled with damp, stinky training gear.

This 100% Polyester, waterproof bag has sections for dirty laundry and shoes, as well as internal organisation slips.

What: UA Undeniable Duffel 4.0 Medium Duffle Bag

Price: $65

Where: Under Armour

Number Six:

LONG SLEEVE COMPRESSION SHIRT.

2XU is one of the leading brands for compression-wear. Compression wear promotes posture, performance and recovery – while also providing a light-weight, breathable training top.

This particular shirt comes in male and female configurations and is a great gift idea – or if you’re unsure on sizing, get them a 2XU gift card!

What: 2XU Long Sleeve Compression Top

Price: $120

Where: 2XU

Source: https://www.2xu.com/dw/image/v2/AAXS_PRD/on/demandware.static/-/Sites-txu-master-catalog/default/dw241432a1/images/MA2308a/MA2308a_BLK-SIL.jpg?sw=296&sh=368&sm=fit

Number Seven:

Source: https://cdn10.bigcommerce.com/s-kvxitxv8/products/130/images/550/97110_4_grip_tape_on_paddle__68361.1485696592.1280.1280.png?c=2

GRIP TAPE.

Grip tape is often overlooked, but vitally important when it comes to paddling.

Burnwater Grip Tape has microscopic gas bubbles in the tape that activate the rubber so that it permanently sticks only to itself – and it comes in nine different colours, so your loved one can match their paddle to their team colour!

What: Fusion Paddle Grip Tape

Price: $17

Where: Burnwater

Number Eight:

Source: https://jpx2.com.au/collections/dragon-boat-accessories?page=2

PADDLING GLOVES.

Paddling gloves provide protection from blisters, and help paddlers keep a firm grip while training and racing.

These neoprene gloves are a perfect gift idea, and are easy to wash. Bonus!

What: Gloves – NRS Fingerless

Price: $40

Where: JPX2

Number Nine:

WATER SPORT SUNGLASSES.

A friend of mine recently bought a (very) expensive pair of sunglasses, only to lose them a week later in the lake while he was paddling.

These sunglasses are water-sport specific, polarized and designed to float. They can also be converted to prescription if needed. Problem solved!

What: Classic Jet Specs

Price: $49.95 (more for prescription)

Where: SeaSpecs

Source: https://www.seaspecs.com/classic-jet-specs-p-30

Number Ten:

NECK PROTECTION.

This neck buff can be used to keep the sun off your neck, keep the bugs out of your mouth, or to provide a wind-block in winter.

On hot days, you can soak it in water to keep you cool instead!

What: Hornet Buffs

Price: $15

Where: JPX2

Source: https://jpx2.com.au/collections/dragon-boat-accessories/products/hornet-buff-blue

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Quote Of The Day 11/12/2018

TUESDAY, 11/12/2018:

Source: https://goo.gl/images/pk5U7p

‘No one has ever become poor by giving.’

– Anne Frank