Friday, September 27, 2013

made my week: cushion covers

I decided to treat myself this week. I've been more domestic than normal and kept the living area tidy (I normally struggle to do this). This has been good for the soul.* Also during my normal 'work' hours I made these 2 cushions. 

At the beginning of the week it was our 11th wedding anniversary. During our first years of marriage we made each other awesome gifts using the traditional anniversary gifts. Since children not so much. This year its supposed to be steel. BUT...

Our bedroom is my least favourite room in our house. The walls are painted a purple/mauve colour. Which looks bad with our grass green and blue duvet cover. Green and blue colours are in my life ALL. THE. TIME. but I'm really over this duvet cover. We purchased it as a gift for ourselves with our wedding money. So 11 years ago. Lately I took the cover off and had the duvet bare as that looked better to me. 

So for pleasure I sat in front of the sewing machine. First time in a while. Happy, happy feelings. Now I want to make the bed. I used material I've had for years and some a dear friend gave me last week. 

Degree of difficulty: I added zips and I find zips hard to sew other than that it's easy enough if you don't mind using a gazillion pins to make sure you catch the pom pom ribbon. 
Cost: about $3-4 for the pom pom ribbon (which I brought at 30% off from Spotlight), fabric free from 'the stash'.
Time: 2-3 hours each one (that pom pom ribbon was a killer)
Result: 11 year anniversary present tick (for me at least). I keep walking past our bedroom just to look at the bed. Not sometimes blue today folks. The Man about the House reckons he needs a 'metal' CD. 

* Another thing good for the soul is the movie "Gardening with Soul" which is one at the movies at the mo.

Showing and telling (a day late) at Leonies

Sunday, September 8, 2013

Spring has sprung | giveaway


a green life | a spring has sprung giveaway

Do you get a spring in your step when spring is in the air? I know I do. It's my favourite season. My creative spirit becomes ignited, a get busy around the house, start to think about a new wallrobe, start excising again and dream about how organised I'll be for Christmas this year. 

I have gathered or made this collection of things (mostly while out opp shopping) together for the crafty, home loving women who stumble upon this post. One winner will receive the following:

1. A black, flowery bag with little bunny and dodo. This is a new handmade bag made with    thick tapestry outer material and a black lining. 

2. Cute, reversible, short overalls for a little baby, 3-6 months. This is also new and handmade. In purples and creams on one side and pink, purple and grey on the other. Lovely detailing with cute domes and buttons. 

3. A two-colour Infinity scarf by a green life. This is made with a preloved, floral sheet and a lovely textured stretchy olive green fabric. More a green life infinity scarf's will be available here later this week. 

4. A unique rainbow hand died doily by a green life. It's 27cm in diameter. I could see this as a cushion, on clothing or in a little rainbow loving child's room. 

5. Faux fur collar from an old jacket. I added a cream ribbon to enclose it. Great for a date night or girlie drinks. 

6. Atmosphere label shoulder bag (made in Ireland), mustard coloured, soft leather feel (but actually PVC). It looks brand new. Score. 

7. Light used The Dalai Lama's Book of Love and Compassion. Wise words to live by. 

8. A bright pink and rose serving set by French Bull for playing ladies at a high tea or similar. They are 100% you can find similar here. 

9. Three hand embroidered linen placemat's with lotus flowers. Prefect to make something look pretty whether that be a table top or for craft. 

10. Two vintage yellow and cream rose pillowcases. 

It's easy to enter by answering the question- what do you love about spring- on the below thing-a-me. You can have as many as 7 entries by clicking a few more buttons and sharing the love. 

I think this thing-a-me is pretty easy but if you have any problems please let me know. The winner will be announced one week from today at 8pm EST. Open to NZ people only. 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

THIS GIVEAWAY HAS NOW CLOSED! PS. a green life is having a Spring Sale this week over on the facebook page

lessons from my homeopath | bath salts

This begins a series of lessons/notes in my journey to better well being by visiting a homoeopath. Homoeopathy considers the totality of the patient's symptoms, personal traits, physical and psychological state, and life history. 

One of the first lessons I learnt (I've been going regularly for a few months) is about epsom bath salts. I knew that Epsom salts were good for aching muscles. My Mum told me this when I was little. For years I’ve been known to have a soak after a hard day in the garden or coming down with the flu and feel much better or at least relaxed enough to go to sleep. But what my Mum didn't know is what Epsom salts are - magnesium sulphate*- and the benefits of them. Not only are they a beautiful way to relax, but they increase circulation and increase magnesium levels. 

Baths can be wonderfully healing, cleansing as well as relaxing, refreshing, and/or awakening even without the addition of anything special in the water. The hot water draws toxins out of the body to the skin’s surface, and while the water cools it pulls toxins from the skin. The warmer the water, the more powerful the detox effect will be. 

Adding a bath salt augments this detoxification by causing you to sweat. A soak in bath salts assists your body in eliminating toxins as well as absorbing the minerals and nutrients that are in the water. Minerals and salts make the bath water feel silky and leave your skin cleansed and soft.

-    Common Ingredients:
  • Epsom Salts (or magnesium sulphate) helps replenish the body’s magnesium levels, combating hypertension. The magnesium is absorbed into the blood stream in a form which can be used straight away. The sulphate flushes toxins and helps form proteins in brain tissue and joints. You can use a couple of tablespoons or up to a cup per bath if you are requiring the therapeutic effect of magnesium.
  • Rock Salt  (or sodium chloride) naturally harvested sea salt contains minerals, helps draw toxins from the skin and soothes sore muscles. It is visually striking because it is chunky. If you have the budget you could use Himalayan Pink Salt as the mineral composition is greater than rock salt.
  • Baking Soda is known for its cleansing ability and even has anti-fungal properties. It leaves skin very soft.
  • Aromatherapy Oils are optional, but they smell divine and they have particular therapeutic properties to take advantage of. Examples include lavender for relaxing, tea tree for cleansing, ylang ylang and rose for stimulating/romancing. 
  • Ginger can be either ground ginger or ginger infused tea. Ginger can increase your heat levels, helping to sweat out those toxins. It may cause your skin to turn slightly red for a few minutes, so be careful with the amount you add. Depending on the capacity of your tub, and your sensitivity, anywhere from 1 tablespoon to 1/3 of a cup can be added. Most people sweat profusely with the addition of the ginger, and if you wrap your body in a blanket immediately after getting out of the tub, you can continue to detoxify through perspiration for another couple of hours. This is beneficial if you are trying to rid the body of a bug of some sort, like the flu, or a cold.
Epsom Salts can be found in the beauty isle (often beside the soaps) in most supermarkets. Different rock salt's can be found at the supermarket too. I found getting ingredients from Moore Wilsons and Bin Inn cost effective. I did try to check the ethical, fair trade type issues but it was difficult to tell. 


Soaking do’s and don’ts
  • Some information on the web recommended that you make the first time you soak with Bath Salts 5-10 minutes due to the health risks of feeling dizzy. Other information warned about taking hot baths and salt baths if you have heart trouble, high blood pressure, or are diabetic. I found one site saying don’t take baths while home alone but most of you reading this are Mum’s so that’s exactly when we’d want to relax in a bath. Just use your common sense.
  • The first 20 minutes are said to help your body remove the toxins, while the second 20 minutes are for absorbing the minerals in the water.
  • Any time your body detox’s you flush out toxins so drinking lots of water is needed.
  • These baths tend to make you tired so ideally have them before bed. 
  • After the bath rub down your body with a loofah or vegetable bristle brush. This can help to stimulate the lymphatic system, which can aid with the release of toxins. Use long, gentle sweeping strokes aimed toward the heart.
To use as an exfoliator
Mix 2 tablespoons of bath salt with a handful of your body wash. Gently massage mixture onto skin to slough away dry patches, revelling in a healthier looking complexion.

Recipe - New Product
Sorry I'm not going to share the recipes I found as since it’s pretty easy to make (sh don’t tell) and looks nice in glass jars it’s a green life's newest product. Available at the moment is a relax and detox blend. They can be purchased on the a green life face book page and at upcoming Spring Markets.

* Actually I used to know this I discovered while going through my 6th form Chemistry notes last weekend as one does.  

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

a bit mixed up

Who else gets the feeling August and September have gotten themselves a bit mixed up? 


Follow my blog with Bloglovin OK So I know I'm a bit late with this. I think I did try to do this a while ago but I think that was a fail.

Monday, September 2, 2013

Becoming the Mama I Want To Be: One day at a time

Today was a good Mama day so I thought I'd share. I read Stella's post about how to make a small child happy, namely play doh. As I was going to have 2 kiddo's on a school day* I decided that was the first thing I'd do to free up some time for me. I made a batch up using this recipe. I love adding the essential oils to it too. I still use these ones.  

Now my children have the concentration, sitting power of a goldfish so to sit down and play with the play doh for one and a half hours in one sitting. Happy kids, happy mummy. The six year old ended up making food out of it, giving the food made up names, labelling it, displaying it, arranging a shop and giving us money for purchasing her food. Helped by the fact I sat down with them and just popped out a few times to put on and out the stinky, smelly linen. 

Then we played cards, now Mr Happy, at 4 and a bit doesn't really play cards. So I read to him and played cards with the sick child. Recently Storm has been asking what the Joker card is for- "can't we play a game with the joker mum" she asks over and over again. So I think what's another little kids game that's not snap. something about FISHing. I grab my handy dandy notebook (laptop) and find the instructions for GO FISH. Within minutes she's got it and we're off. She won I kind of let her. Is that OK?

Today I was the Mama I want to be. I was intentional and that's often the key. 

* Basically August was a write off for me in terms of getting ahead with my 'work' due to a tummy bug and other general bugs that found a home at our house. Have you had this tummy bug? It lurks in the middle of the night around here. 

Sewing kits in tins for kids

Do you remember the tins that became these awesome, cute as sewing kits? 
You can see my post about them here or buy them here

While I've not found any more adult sized tins I have been collecting these kids tins. 

I know cute eh! My children keep spying them and they love them 
(they want them actually).  

So I've been collecting things to create little mini sewing kids for children. Spot the snail tape measure, cute scissors, pom pom ribbon and neon ribbon. It's lots of fun finding, hoarding, and collecting things to make these up. I was going to try making an old school finger knitting tool with a wooden sewing reel. I still have mine from when I was a child.  What else do you think should be in them?
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