8 Months & Christmas Magic

I figured it’s about time to post Will’s eight month photos, before he hits nine months. oops!

I can’t believe our first Christmas has come & gone. We spent Christmas in California & went up to the foothills to visit my family. It was so nice to spend more than just our usual Friday – Sunday quick trips. It felt like we really got some down time. William got to spend time with his two cousins & his highlights were sitting in his high chair watching his cousins open all their presents & sitting on my parents deck watching Juno chase a ball around the back yard. I can’t believe January is halfway over! I feel like I’m going to blink & William is going to be one! I

DIY Scented Candles


Whether you’re making them as gifts or you’re like me & can’t bring yourself to buy a $30 candle from Anthropologie, this tutorial will show you candles are a super easy project to take on!

What you’ll need:

Optional items:

  • Paper to line countertops for easier clean up
  • Crock pot liners – easier clean up


I’ve been making candles for about 3-4 years now. Usually around the holidays I invite some girls over & we have a little holiday crafting day & everyone makes some candles either for themselves or to give as gifts over the holiday season! Over the years I’ve come up with some tips / tricks  for easier candle making & easier clean up!

Probably my biggest tip is to line your counter-tops with paper. I usually get some plain paper in the dollar aisle at target or you could even use heavy duty tinfoil. Just something to keep the counter-tops protected from any wax spills.

Along the same line of lining your counters I recommend buying crock pot liners. Unless you plan to dedicate a specific crock pot to candle making. I usually line the bottom of the crock pot with tin foil & then use the liner. It makes clean up so simple. I just allow the crock pot to cool completely and then lift the liner out & toss away. Then I just need to run some soapy water over the crock pot & it’s good to go.

I get all my supplies from amazon. But I know they sell candle wax / candle scents at craft stores like Micheals, so if you finder cheaper deals than what I’ve linked to, go for it!

The first step is to line your counter-tops for easy clean up.


Next, pour the soy wax into the preferably lined crock pot and allow the wax to melt completely. I find it usually takes about 40 minutes to melt about 5 pounds of wax on high. I usually just start that process while I’m getting the rest of my supplies in order.


Once the wax has completely melted you can begin filling your containers. I try to do all the containers that will have the same scent at once. When it comes to adding the essential oils, go big! Especially if you’re trying to get a candle to be as fragrant as store bought. I think I’ve only made one candle that was wayyyy to scented & honestly I think it had more to do with the actual scent than with the amount I added. once you’ve added the desired amount of essential oil, place your wick.


I’ve experimented briefly with wood wicks and have been disappointed with how quickly they burn out. So if anyone has a good suggestion for a brand of wood wicks please tell me! Otherwise I’ve gone back to use the standard candle wick. I use medical tape across the container to support the wick as the wax melts. It’s important to cut the wick to approximately the height you’ll want it before trying to put the wick in the hot wax. I find the wicks try to collapse or fall over if you don’t cut them ahead of time.


Finally allow the candles plenty of time to harden completely & then that’s it! All in all it usually takes the candles about 60 minutes or so to be done. It depends on the size of the candles you’re making though. I usually make a variety of sizes, scents & styles.



If you use this guide, I’d love to see or hear about any recreations in the comment section below!

Happy Holidays to all!

Last Minute Gift Guide!

Holiday gift giving can always be a little stressful especially as Christmas gets closer. Whether you’re searching for a gift for a friend, coworker, in-law or secret Santa, this guide is sure to have something for everyone on your list! This guide also contains DIY projects that make excellent low cost gifts, personal gifts.

DIY Terrarium – This is an easy inexpensive project that makes for an impressive gift. Also, it’s a great gift even for someone who is worried about killing plants, you can place air plants or succulents which are super low maintenance & nearly impossible to kill. Just remind them to mist once a week & keep in indirect sunlight! Find the tutorial here!

Kate Spade Studs

Kate Spade small square studs $48  here. These square studs come in a variety of colors, my personal favorite are these blush pink ones. These make for a great girly gift. Who doesn’t like receiving one of those precious Kate Spade boxes?

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DIY Scented Candles – follow the tutorial here to make an easy handmade gift that’ll impress anyone on your list!

 

vase

Set of 3 Painted Wooden Vases here $46 . These vases are neutral enough to add a cute accent to any home or apartment.

patent prints

Patent Prints – This etsy shop has poster of patents for everything under the sun. I purchased a set of golf club patent prints for my brother.  You’re sure to find something for everyone at this shop, whether it’s kitchen decor, or a Lego patent for the play room. This shop offers unique gifts for someone who has everything.

 

 


 DIY String Art – This DIY tutorial is an easy gift that anyone will love. I first made the Texas state one for my husbands birthday when we first were dating & he LOVED it. I finally got around to making the California one, they hang side by side in our hallway & they’re constantly getting complimented! Here’s the tutorial for how to make this awesome decor piece for less than $25!


On the go Gulpy – This ingenious product is the perfect gadget for any dog owner on your Christmas list! We used to have to carry around a water bottle for the dog plus a little bowl. inevitably the bowl would get knocked over or the puppy would chew through it when we weren’t watching. We use this anytime we’re taking the dog out for hikes or even just on a road trip. This was a game changer, I guarantee any dog owner will love this gift!

Spiralizer – – This was an item that was on our wedding registry that I ached for! I use the spiralizer about once a week to make my “faux carb” pastas. It’s an easy way to create healthy low carb meals. This is the perfect gift for someone who loves kitchen gadgets. William Sonoma also offers the spiralizer with a companion cookbook, however if you don’t want to spring for that, a quick search on pinterest can land you hundreds of recipes. Find it here!

cutting board

Personalized cutting boards. Anything from family names, monograms to breaking bad boards! These make great gifts for the newlywed couple on your holiday list!