DIY Baby Wipes!!

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With all the news about baby wipes being recalled lately, maybe we should all think about making our own with pure essential oils!  My cousin previously shared this recipe with me but I had no real incentive to try it before this week (I really love Target brand unscented wipes).  But since the recalls have been issued, it has made me think…why AM I using chemicals on my toddler’s bottom when I care so much about every other thing that I put on and in her body??  So I made them..it was SO easy and so far I really like them!! I have a feeling I will continue to tweak them until I get my ideal formula but it makes me feel good to be reducing the chemical load in our house just a little more!

Ok, basic recipe (and I’ll share my adjustments below):

1/2 roll of cloth-like paper towels cut in half (such as Bounty or Viva), store the other half for future wipe recipes

2 cups warm water

2 tablespoons natural baby wash

2 tablespoons fractionated coconut oil

3 drops pure lavender essential oil

3 drops pure melaleuca essential oil

-Mix all the liquids in a big pot, then put the towels in
-Flip the roll after a few minutes so both sides can absorb the liquid
-Then pull the cardboard out of the center of the paper towel roll and squeeze excess water from the roll
-The wipes should unravel from the center like commercial cleaning wipe wipes
-Store in a repurposed plastic jug

My adjustments:  I used baby formula unscented castile soap in place of baby wash and reduced the soap to just one tablespoon.  I also increased the essential oils to 7 drops each.  Note, if you want to learn more about pure essential oils, feel free to email me!  mariaferris@outlook.com 

My cousin’s adjustments:  She eliminated the baby wash altogether.  It was irritating her son’s sensitive skin.

My aunt’s adjustments:  She used dish soap (one tablespoon) instead of baby wash and substituted protective blend essential oil for the Lavender and Melaleuca to make surface cleaning wipes!!!  This is my next project!!

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Adventures in Applesauce

I absolutely love fall.  I love everything about it.  Pretty much my entire life has been spent in Southeastern Pennsylvania which is a great part of the country for fall weather and fall foliage.  I love the cool temperatures, the smell of leaves, the colors, fall activities, fall fruits and vegetables, watching football…you name it.  This year, we actually went up to Vermont for a long weekend in the early fall.  It was so beautiful.  Coming from such a developed and populated area, it is amazing to me that there are still parts of this country…not so far from me…that are so pristine and unadulterated.  One of the activities we did in Vermont was go apple picking!  Now, this is something that we do around here too, but it was hard to resist the beautiful Vermont orchards!  C loves apples and being crazy outside so apple picking is always a good choice!

We picked about 10 pounds of apples (and had another 5 or so pounds waiting for us at home) and there was not too much debate about what to do with the apples!  If you know me, you know I love to make applesauce…and I love to make homemade food for my little one…so mama’s world famous cinnamon applesauce pouches it was!  And it is SO EASY!!

1.  Pick your apples.  By far the cheapest way to get them.  And it’s fun!

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2.  Wash your apples with a veggie wash to remove any dirt, wax or chemicals that might be on them (even though I always try to find organically grown, it doesn’t hurt to wash wash wash).  Yup, I use Lemon essential oil in my veggie wash… if you want to learn more about pure essential oils, feel free to email me!  mariaferris@outlook.com

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doterrra fruit and veggie wash

3.  Peel your apples.  Not the most fun part, I admit.  And I don’t have an apple peeler/corer so it’s all done by hand…  It can be therapeutic though and it’s kind of exciting when you manage to get the peel off an apple in one long piece!  I usually get one or two out of the pounds and pounds of apples I peel.  Cut out the cores and roughly chop the apples.

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4.  Fill your crockpot/slow cooker with the apples.  My slow cooker is 6 quart which holds about 7-8 pounds of apples.  As long as the apples seem juicy, I don’t add any liquid.  Sometimes early-season apples are a little dry…in that case, I will add 1/4 – 1/2 cup water to the slow cooker.

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5.  Now, this is assuming the 6 quart slow cooker filled with about 7-8 pounds of apples…I add 1 teaspoon vanilla extract, 1 tablespoon cinnamon and 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg.

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6.  That’s it…just set the slow cooker for 7 hours on low.

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7.  Every 2-3 hours, remove the lid and give the apple mixture a stir.  At the end of the 7 hours, the applesauce will have broken itself down (no need to mash, just give it a strong stir) and be a beautiful caramel color.  I really do get lots of compliments on this recipe….no added sugar, yet it is amazingly sweet with warm vanilla spice flavor.  It actually TASTES like fall.

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8.  Now, if you are going to package it up for little ones (or really anyone…even adults slurp applesauce out of packets these days), break out your Infantino Fresh Squeezed Squeeze Station and your Infantino Pouches.  Set up a nice assembly line…

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9.  Since the applesauce is so yummy, I fill the pouches to their maximum (4 ounces).  Fill the cups…press…viola!!  Applesauce pouches!!  I leave a few in the fridge but freeze most of the pouches and take them out the night before I plan to pack them for lunch, take to the park, etc.

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So easy and such a fun fall activity, especially if you have children who are a little bit older and can help you out.  Don’t forget to serve some of that applesauce warm, right out of the slow cooker…yum…and use some in your baking!!  Apple spice muffins…need I say more??

Amazing body scrub from used coffee grounds!??

Let me share my secret wake up ritual…you wake up and have your morning coffee, right? Don’t throw the grounds away! They are a fabulous body scrub! You can literally take the coffee filter in the shower with you or make a more fancy scrub. I let the grounds dry out then mix them in a small jar with a little unscented body wash (because I like a sudsy scrub) and a little bit of essential oil (peppermint or grapefruit or slim and sassy, so many options). You could also mix with coconut or almond oil if you prefer an oil based scrub. Your skin will be unbelievably smooth and your senses will be perked up!! And the caffeine might just help smooth out any cellulite…you never know!

Note, if you want to learn more about pure essential oils, feel free to email me!  mariaferris@outlook.com

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THE BEST DIY Deodorant Ever…and some other good stuff

So, I haven’t posted in a while…here’s my excuse…I’ve taken my obsession with essential oils to a new level.  I have been whipping up batches of homemade lotions, single serving lotion bars, body scrubs, lip gloss, diaper cream, cuticle oil, hand sanitizer, deodorant…you name it…and sending them off to my friends and family.

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Like I have nothing better to do (clean the house, cook dinner, exercise, work my day job, etc.).  Oh, yeah, and I’ve started teaching DIY classes at a local salon.  IT IS SO MUCH FUN!!!  So far I have focused exclusively on using essential oils in your daily beauty routine.  I basically talk for a while about essential oils, what they are and how to use them, then I go through a ton of different DIY beauty product how-tos and close with making a product in class for everyone to customize with the essential oils of their choice and take home (for a $5 materials fee).  I am planning to branch out into classes on DIY cleaning and DIY baby products soon.  My next class is Sunday, April 27, 2014 at 6:00 p.m. at Andre Richard Salon in Philadelphia.  If you are in the Philly area, please feel free to join us!!  RSVP to my email mariaferris@outlook.com so I can keep track of how much supplies I need to purchase.  The focus is going to be on DIY personal care products and the “make and take” item will be natural deodorant and lip gloss.  Here are the two recipes I am going to use.  Please try them out at home and leave me some feedback in the comments section!  These are my absolute favorite recipes and if they can be improved, even better!  It is important to me that all oils used to make the lip gloss are safe in case they are ingested.  For that reason, I only use essential oils which are pure, therapeutic grade and are indicated as safe for internal use (they will have supplement facts on the bottle).  If you want to learn more about pure essential oils, feel free to email me!  mariaferris@outlook.com

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Soft Lip Gloss

  • 4 tablespoons fractionated coconut oil
  • 1 tablespoon beeswax pellets
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • 10-20 drops essential oils of your choice

Heat coconut oil, honey and beeswax in double boiler until melted, remove from heat, add in the oil and stir well. Pour into small glass jars and let cool!

Oil Suggestions for Lip Gloss:  lemon and lavender; peppermint and wild orange; lemon and grapefruit; rosemary and peppermint; cinnamon and wild orange…use any essential oils indicated for dietary use!

For a Powerful Cold Sore Treatment: Mix 20 drops geranium, 20 drops lavender, 4 drops thyme, and 16 drops lemon into one of the above recipes.

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THE BEST DIY Deodorant

 

  • ½  cup coconut oil
  • ¼  cup cornstarch (or arrowroot powder)
  • ¼  cup aluminum free baking soda
  • 20 drops essential oils of your choice (see below)

Melt coconut oil over a double boiler.  Mix in your essential oils.  Add cornstarch and baking soda and mix until smooth.  Store in a small jar and apply with fingers. (The melting point of coconut oil is 76 degrees so it might be more solid in the winter and creamier in the summer, this is normal!)

**Melt a tablespoon of beeswax into the coconut oil in the first and pour your finished product into an empty deodorant tube for a solid stick deodorant and mess free application.

Essential Oils for Deodorant  (just a suggestion…experiment!)

  •  Melaleuca is anti-bacterial and anti-fungal
  • Lavender is soothing (and smells great)
  • Protective blends which are anti-bacterial, anti-viral and boost immunity
  • Lemongrass for a bright, clean scent

 

If you have any questions about these recipes or want info on using essential oils, email me!  mariaferris@outlook.com