Common Scents

Fragrance is an important part of my life. When my home and I smell good, I feel good. Bad smells do not make me feel good and are often referred to as offensive. I find overpowering, chemically-laden perfumes, colognes, air fresheners, and detergents pretty darn offensive, too. Since I am striving to live a more affordable, back-to-basics, natural lifestyle, I make my own skin and haircare products, laundry detergent, and other cleaning products out of basic, natural ingredients. In the beginning of my DIY journey, I thought my house and I smelled boring, then I was introduced to essential oils.

Not all essential oils are created equal. I did not know this until I attended some classes on the benefits of using essential oils. If you’d like more information on essential oils, I’d suggest doing some research at the library or online. You can probably find a class on essential oils near you. The classes really helped me understand how essential oils work and the benefits I can expect from using them. 

I add essential oils to my homemade cleaning products, laundry detergent, and skin and haircare products. I dab a few drops on my pulse points, on the bottoms of my feet, and on my scalp. I even put a drop of oil in my mouth after I brush my teeth with sea salt.

In addition to using essential oils, I burn quality incense and candles, mull spices, and place fresh flowers around my home. House plants are used in place of air purifiers- and they add natural beauty to any home. These are all affordable ways to replace expensive, toxic fragrances. 

What are some of your favorite fragrances? Have you tried using essential oils instead of perfume and air freshener? 

Natural Solutions For Your Baby

Money is wasted everyday on things we do not need (but think we do). Advertisements have sold us the lie that we need this or that for this and that when we already have items we could be using in their place. Let’s see how we can replace western culture’s commercial baby products.

1. Coconut Oil instead of Desitin, Baby Lotion, and Baby Oil

2. Cornstarch or Arrowroot Powder instead of Baby Powder

3. Reusable cloth diapers instead of disposable diapers

4. DIY Baby Wipes (recipe posted on
What you need
• 1 roll of soft paper towels
• 2 cups of warm water
• 2 tbsp olive, coconut, avocado, grapeseed, or almond oil
• A few drops of essential oils (optional)
• An airtight container or empty wipe container
What you do
Cut paper towel roll in half. *One roll makes two sets of wipes.* Combine all other ingredients together in a bowl. Place one of the cut paper towel roll halves in your container. Pour the liquid mixture on top of the roll. Cover with airtight lid and let sit for 10 minutes. Turn over and let sit for 10 more minutes. Remove and discard the cardboard middle.

5. DIY Baby Wash (same as the DIY Body Wash recipe posted on my blog)

6. Homemade baby food using a blender or food processor

7. DIY Baby Shampoo & Conditioner (same as the DIY Shampoo & Conditioner recipes posted on my blog)

8. DIY Baby Laundry Detergent (same as the DIY Laundry Detergent recipe posted on my blog)

Do you make your own baby products? Would you consider using these safe, natural, simple, affordable ingredients on your precious baby?

Screw The Gym, Save Your Money

People are often surprised when I tell them I don’t work out. They ask me how I stay fit and trim. This is my answer:

1. I Eat Good Food
If you’ve read my other posts, you already know how I eat. If you haven’t, take a look. Healthy food, when done right, is inexpensive and tasty! Don’t believe the hype that health food drains your wallet and tastes like crap.

2. My Method Of Transportation Is Walking & Biking
I do not own a car, which makes it easier for me to walk and bike everywhere. (When I say easier, I mean it’s easier to motivate myself.) How long do most people spend at the gym? An hour, maybe two? I save time and money by walking and biking to work, school, appointments, etc.

3. I Have Fun
I was in the military for 4 years, and I hated all the running, sit-ups, push-ups, etc. I was in fantastic shape but I thought working out “military-style” was boring! Today I make hula hoops and regularly teach hoopdance. I’ve been hooping for 15 years now and I love it! The trick was finding out what physical activities I actually enjoyed (besides sex). Who wants to work out when we can play instead?!

How do you stay fit?

Slightly Sweet Salad Dressing

What you need
– 1/2 cup of Grapeseed, Walnut, Avocado, or Almond oil
– 1/4 cup of Rice, Apple Cider, or Wine vinegar
– 1-2 tbsp of Raw, unfiltered honey
– Lemon or orange zest
– A bottle to store dressing

What you do
Whisk all ingredients together until well incorporated. Pour into your bottle and let chill for 2 hours before serving. Shake well before each use.

I use this dressing in all my salads that have fruit, nuts, and goat or Gorgonzola cheese in them. Simple, healthy, delicious!

Do you have a favorite dressing recipe you’d like to share?

Movie Night Munchies

I love movies! Because I’m on a budget, I rent free movies from the local library, make gourmet popcorn and fancy drinks, and invite fellow movie buffs to my place for a magical (and affordable) night of movie watching.

Tonight’s Movie Night Menu:

Popcorn With A Kick
Popcorn kernels
Olive oil
Himalayan salt
Nutritional yeast
Dried thyme
Dried dill
Chives, finely chopped
Cayenne pepper

Turn stove on to medium-high heat. Place a large pot on the burner. Put a little bit of oil in the pot, add a kernel and cover. Once the kernel has popped, add 1 cup of kernels to the pot and cover. Shake pot back and forth while cooking the kernels. (You don’t have to do this constantly but enough so that the popcorn doesn’t burn.) Once your kernels are popped (3-5 minutes), turn off the burner and remove the pot from heat. Pour popcorn into a serving bowl and add olive oil and salt then mix well. Next, add cayenne pepper, chives, dill, nutritional yeast, and thyme. Mix again then serve.

Basil Lime Mocktail
Sparkling water
Fresh lime juice
Stevia or xylitol
Fresh basil, chopped

Combine all ingredients together in a pitcher. Mix well then serve over ice.

Tonight’s Movie:

What snacks do you like to eat at the movies? What movies are you watching this weekend?

Tomato Antioxidant Facial Scrub

What you need
1 tomato
1 tbsp raw sugar

What you do
Rinse and dry the tomato. Slice a little less than a 1/2 inch off from the top. (The goal is to be able to hold the stem in your fingers and rub the cut side on your face.) Put your sugar on a clean plate and press your tomato slice into the sugar. Now rub the sugared tomato slice all over your face in circular strokes. Do this until your plate is all out of sugar. *You can use this scrub on your body, too. All you need to do is use more sugar!*

Make sure you use the remaining tomato! I’ll usually make salsa right after using this scrub.

Do you have a favorite antioxidant-rich scrub recipe? Share it here!