DIY Christmas Gifts

Hey everyone!  If you didn’t get all your shopping done on Black Friday or if you just need a few more gifts to finish off everyone on your list, I might be able to help!  I have a few simple ‘do it yourself’ ideas that would work great in gift baskets, as stocking stuffers or as gifts for everyone at work.  You might even want to make one of each for yourself;)  img_3937

Animal Winter Hat (aka: Toboggan or Beanie Hat)

My husband didn’t know what a toboggan was until last Winter when we were in Ohio;)  Both of us are sun lovers.☀️

This hat is so adorable, and I can’t wait to give it to my granddaughter.  I’m sure she will want to make some for her friends:)

What you need:

  • Yarn any color you like
  • Hat (spruce up your old ones, or find affordable ones at a local store)
  • Buttons
  • needle and black thread (for button eyes so they look like pupils;)
  • fabric glue
  • scissors

Step 1:  wrap any color of yarn around the palm of your hand 100x.

Step 2: tightly tie a piece of yard in the middle

Step 3: but the ends then shape them up until pretty balls

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Step 4: sew on eyes

Step 5: make an oval nose and put a 2 small dots of fabric glue to hold it in place

Step 6: make a wave for the mouth and use 5 or so small dots with fabric glue to hold in place

Step 7: admire your cute animal creation!  I hope you can tell this is a bear? LOL

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Makeup Refresher Setting Spray

I’ve tried many drugstore and expensive moisturizers, and this homemade moisturizer is my favorite.  You can also use it as a setting spray for your makeup and as a refresher spray during the day to give you a nice dewy look.

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 tbsp vegetable glycerine (if your skin is dry you could use 1 tbsp)
  • a little under 3oz rosewater or purified water
  • 2 drops of vitamin e to extend the shelf life 4-6 weeks

*keep this in a cool dark space.

Make a body lotion by using equal parts glycerin & rosewater (or plain water).

img_3930Vegetable glycerine is great for any skin type; it’s a humectant meaning it helps to draw and retain moisture. It’s water-soluble, so it’s not a heavy oil, and it leaves your skin super soft.

Rose water also helps hydrate, revitalize and moisturize the skin giving it with that refreshed look. It has anti-inflammatory properties that can help reduce the redness and acne.  Rosewater is especially good for mature skin.

Lavender Pillow Spray

Who doesn’t want to get a restful night’s sleep, so this would make a great gift for anyone:)
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Ingredients:

  • equal parts witch hazel and water
  • 10-15 drops of lavender essential oil

I wrote the recipe for each of these DIY sprays in the gift cards:

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These were so easy and fun to make.  Hope you enjoy this season of giving!

A generous person will prosper;
whoever refreshes others will be refreshed.
Proverbs 11:25

Tips To De-clutter Your Home

d40976d70bc1349d65879f5ec45cac2bThis week I decided to use some vacation time to declutter my home.  It was an overwhelming project because our home is filled with stuff that accumulated over a lifetime, but so worthwhile. I didn’t read any books or videos about how the pros suggest doing it, I simply started.

Here are some tips that worked for me:

Tip #1  Start small

Decluttering and organizing one small space will help you overcome inertia.  This could be a kitchen drawer, your car, purse, or book shelf.  For me, I started with my makeup drawer because I was so annoyed with rummaging through it trying to find something.

img_3883-1Tip #2  Recycle items for storage

I know the first inclination you will have is to go to the Dollar Store or Target to pick up cute containers, DON’T DO IT!  You will be amazed what you already have in your own home that you can recycle and use for organizing.  I found some empty cigar and wooden boxes in our attic and used those to separate my hair ties and makeup in my bathroom drawers.

Cups, jars, and pencil containers make for great storage.

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Once you declutter areas of your home you will have all kinds of baskets, boxes and plastic containers freed up to use for items you want to keep.img_3886

Tip #3 Rediscover Treasures

I found this adorable coat rack in the attic and love using it to display some of my most worn hats:)

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I also uncovered plenty of empty notebooks, games and art supplies that were unseen and stuffed away in boxes or closets that I’ve organized for the grandkids to enjoy.

After cleaning out my bathroom drawers and cabinets I was on fire and eager to get started on my closet.  I hung my purses up so I could visually see them and will likely use them more often.  I also found some money as I was hanging up my bags!  LOL

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With a clean and organized closet, I don’t dread putting my clothes away.

Tip #4 Keep an empty bag or box for items to be donated

In the back corner, I have a bag for clothes I plan to donate.  Once it gets full I will drop it off at the Goodwill.  You could do this in every room of your home.

Tip #5 Purging your kitchen and home can help you lose weight!

I truly believe that being overweight is not just a physical issue, it’s a lifestyle issue and that’s why I’m passionate about my work as a health and lifestyle fitness coach.

Clutter in our minds, calendars, kitchens, etc. leads to stress and weight gain.  What I discovered is that my energy was unblocked as I started cleaning out unused and expired items.   It’s like the subconscious weight of distractions was removed.  Now I feel more mindful, clear minded, and motivated.

After cleaning out and organizing my kitchen I have more joy in preparing meals and even going to the grocery store.

Tip #6 Don’t buy boxes instead ask your area bookstore or grocery store for their empty boxes

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I was lucky enough to get some from Barnes and Nobles and they worked out wonderfully with sorting  items to keep, donate and throw away.

Tip #7 Less is more

Some of the surprising gifts of decluttering:

Less stress and More PEACE

Less negativity and more JOY

Less griping and more GRATITUDE

Less mess and more TIME

Less apathy and more ENERGY

Tip #8 Bless your home

As you are decluttering envision what you want your home to be like.  What energies do you want your home to exude?  What experiences do you want to have in your home?  How do you want to feel in your home?

And by knowledge the rooms are filled With all precious and pleasant riches.  Proverbs 24:4

 

Bodyweight HIIT Cardio Intervals

Want to get in a quality cardio session without spending 45 minutes to and hour on a treadmill?  You can optimize your time and get better results with this 20-minute high-intensity interval workout.   This fat burning cardio session will tone your entire body and leave you feeling energized!  You can do this in your office, home or in the gym.

What you need:

  1. a couple of hand towels
  2. a mat
  3. a stopwatch or tabata timer
  4. your willingness to give your best effort.  You can do this workout in your office, home, outside or in the gym.

The Plan:

  • Get a stopwatch or download an interval/tabata timer on your phone.  There are many free apps available that are good.
  • You will exercise for 20 seconds then rest for 10 seconds, and repeat 8 times.
  • Perform circuit 1 rest 1 minute, move into circuit 2 and then repeat the whole sequence again.  At the end of the workout, you will have done each circuit 2 times.

This will make better sense once you get into the workout. Be warned, it starts off feeling easy but the short rest breaks will challenge you!

Start with a 5-10 minute warm-up to make sure your muscles are loose and you are mentally focused.

Let’s get started! (photos of the exercises below the workout)

Circuit 1
1) Low Jacks:  20 seconds/rest 10 seconds
2) Plank Jacks: 20 seconds/rest 10 seconds
3) Squat Jumps: 20 seconds/rest 10 seconds
4) Push-up to knee tucks: 20 seconds/rest 10 seconds

-repeat circuit 1 again until you’ve completed 8 cycles which will take you exactly 4 minutes.

After the 4 minute circuit, rest 1 minute then move on to the next circuit.

Circuit 2 (follow the 20 on/10 off sequence)
1) Burpees
2) Army Crawls
3) Side to side jump squats
4) Squat thrusts

-repeat circuit 2 again until you’ve completed 8 cycles which will take you exactly 4 minutes.

After the 4 minute circuit, rest 1 minute then repeat the entire workout again.

Circuit 1:

low jacks– stay low the entire time.

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Plank jacks– in a push-up position, jump your legs out wide and together.

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Squat Jumps– no photo for this one, just squat and jump as high as you can.

Push-up to knee tuck– put a wash cloth under each foot.  Using your abs, pull your knees into your chest and the push them back.

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Circuit 2

Burpees– no photos for this one either.  You will squat, jump your feet back to push up position, jump your feet back in and immediately do a squat jump.

Army crawls– on your forearms and toes, keep your hips steady as possible as your crawl forward to the end of your mat and then crawl backward.

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Side to side jump squats– roll your mat up or pick a spot to tap down with your hands.  Squat to one side, bring your feet together in the center and jump out to the other side.  You want this to be fast and fluid.

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Squat thrusts– squat down, jump your feet back, back in and stand.

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