Essential Oils

Essential Oils have become a popular trend amongst various households. Homeowners have begun to take a liking towards the natural movement because of its rejuvenation. You may be skeptical at first, but the natural remedies can be very beneficial to the body and your home. Essential oils are not only amazing for aromatherapy but they can help you while you are cleaning your home. You can add drops of some classic oils into your homemade cleaner and voila, it adds a refreshening scent.

Getting to know the oils.

There is a wide selection of essential oils available to consumers, but let us focus on the most common oils:

Bergamot. This oil derives from the Citrus Beragamia tree and is commonly used to help with stress, anxiety or depression. Also, the oil has been known to help treat skin conditions like psoriasis and eczema.

How to use: It is recommended to use this in a diffuser or diluted bath water. Experts advise not to apply this oil directly to your skin in its pure form.

Eucalyptus. This oil is known to be very fragranced and consumers love how it can help with respiratory issues, migraines, and muscle aches. You will instantly notice its “cooling” property when you begin to use the oil.

How to use: You can use this oil in a diffuser or apply it to your skin with a carrier-oil. Experts encourage using Coconut Oil as your carrier oil to help reduce skin sensitivity.

Pro-tip: This oil is great to use as a disinfectant because it prevents the spread of germs and infections.

Jasmine. You will quickly find out that this oil is one of the more expensive oils you can buy. It is has a rich scent and strong properties that make it a top seller. Jasmine is used for depression, childbirth, respiratory issues, addiction problems, and serves as a stress reliever.

How to use: Jasmine can be added into your bath, diffuser or apply to your skin with a carrier-oil.

Lavender. This oil smells delectable while helping to fight colds, migraines and stress. Also, you can use lavender to help you have a better night’s rest.

How to use: You can add this oil into your bath, diffuser, or add a few drops on top of your pillow before you go to bed.

Lemon. Lemon tends to be homeowners’ favorite oil because of its clean, refreshing scent. Not only can you add this oil to your homemade cleaning products, but it can help boost your mood! How nice is that? The oil can also be used to help digestion and skin irritation issues.

How to use: You can add this oil into your diffuser, bath, homemade cleaning products, or onto your skin with a carrier oil.

Peppermint. If you frequently suffer from migraines, peppermint oil will become your best friend. Not only can it help with migraines, but peppermint can help digestion, your mood and increase your focus.

How to use: Peppermint oil is extremely versatile which is one of the reasons homeowners love it. You can use it in a diffuser, as a massage oil, in your bath, or as a mouthwash.

Tea Tree. Mothers love this product because it helps to boost their children’s immune system and fight infections. It can help with cold sores, respiratory issues, muscle aches and even the flu! The best part about this essential oil is that it works fast to help aid the user.

How to use: You can use a diffuser or apply it directly to your skin with a carrier-oil.

Note: It is important to understand that a little goes a long way with essential oils. You should only be using between 3 to 6 drops during each use. We encourage you to talk to your doctor before using any essential oils and understand that essential oils are not a replacement for your current medications.

Homemade Essential Oil Floor Cleaner:
Take a medium sized bucket and fill it with hot water. Then take 1/4 cup of white vinegar and add it into your bucket. Lastly, put in 15-20 drops of lemon, citrus, or grapefruit essential oil. The best part about this floor cleaner is that there is no rinsing required. You can just wash your floors and let it dry. This floor cleaner is okay use on any hard surface flooring.

Four Things You Should Check In Your Home Every Year

Owning a home comes with a hefty responsibility. Since your home is probably the biggest investment you’ll make in your lifetime then you want to make sure that you maintain it. Although, you would rather spend your free time relaxing here are four things you should do every year to ensure you’re running a well-oiled machine.

  1. Replace the batteries in the smoke detector

Ever heard of the old adage “better than safe than sorry”? Yes, every year you should be switching out the old batteries in your smoke detector for new ones. Modern smoke detectors feature hard-wired backup batteries that must also be replaced. However, it doesn’t stop there. After trading batteries you should ensure that all the smoke detectors throughout the house are in working order.

In addition to the smoke detectors, you should also check your carbon monoxide detectors. Every year thousands of deaths occur due to faulty carbon monoxide detectors. Make sure you change the batteries at least every six months to a year.

  1. Inspect the fire chimney

Before you fire up your fireplace during the cold winter months you must fire perform a thorough inspection of your chimney. Make sure the gas logs are positioned correctly, look for cracks in the glass door and make sure the burner holes aren’t clogged.

Even when the fireplace is not in use it should be inspected because the chimney has dangerous gases that can be carried to the stove and that shouldn’t be inhaled. Be sure to clean it periodically.

  1. Central Air Conditioner Maintenance

Of course, seasonally you’ll need to remove the leaves and clean the debris from your central air conditioning unit. Use the hose to spray the fins and remove all the dirt from the inside out. Be sure to test the unit after you’ve cleaned it to ensure that it’s working properly.

  1. Doors and windows

Before winter hits, you should perform an inspection of all the doors and windows in your home. Check for weather stripping around the front and back door. Look for cracks in the windows and tears on the screen. Checking for signs of wear around the window frame is important for safety issues.

DIY Laundry Pods

Homeowners are becoming obsessed with natural home remedies that replace harmful, chemical-filled products. Have you ever considered swapping out your traditional laundry detergent for an epic DIY project? Forget your regular, old detergent and switch to these amazing all-natural laundry pods.

Supplies:
Hand Grater
Large Mixing Bowl
Ice Cube Tray
Butter Knife
Stylish Airtight Container

Ingredients:
Castile Soap
Washing Soda
Epsom Salt
Baking Soda
White Vinegar
Lavender Essential Oil

How to Make Lavender Detergent Pods:

Step One. Grate one full bar of Castile soap with a hand grater.

Step Two. Grab your large mixing bowl and mix together your freshly grated soap, one cup of washing soda and 1/4 cup of epsom salt.

Step Three. (Optional) Make your own washing soda by pouring a thick layer of baking soda on a baking dish. Turn your oven on to 400 degrees fahrenheit. Place the baking dish on the oven’s bottom rack and bake for approximately one hour. You will need to stir the mixture once or twice while it is baking. Wait for the mixture to become grainy rather than its original state of being silky. After an hour, remove the baking dish from the oven and let it cool.

Step Four. Combine one cup of your washing soda to your large mixing bowl. Slowly pour in 1/2 cup of white vinegar. Make sure to continuously stir while added in the white vinegar until the mixture becomes “clumpy.”

Step Five. Add ten to twelve drops of your lavender essential oil to the mixing bowl for a refreshing scent. (Note: You can try out different essential oil scents with your detergent pods)

Step Six. Pour the contents of the bowl into your ice cube tray. Make sure that they are tightly packed into the tray by securing the mixture down with your fingers.

Step Seven. Wait one day before removing the pods from the ice cube tray.

Step Eight. Remove the lavender pods from the ice tray and place them into an airtight container of your choice.

Voila! These homemade pods are perfect for high-efficient washing machines, because they contain a small amount of suds.

A Quick Clean

Sometimes you do not have enough time to do a deep clean of your home or apartment. If you are looking for a quick yet efficient cleaning routine, we have you covered. You should not have to compromise quality for time. Let us focus on seven items that you can quickly clean in under an hour.

7 Items to Clean:

  1. Clear the Clutter. Before you can begin cleaning, you will need to put away all of the items around your home. Encourage your family members to partake in the cleaning and create a fun game. Assign every member a certain room then set a timer for thirty minutes. See who can pick up the clutter the fastest in their room and have a reward prepared for them.

  2. Throw away trash. Go through all the rooms with a trash bin and throw away any trash that may be lying around your home. Afterwards, empty out all trash cans.

  3. Wipe down surfaces. After you have cleared the clutter and trash from your rooms, you will want to wipe down all of the surfaces. Use a disinfectant wipe on door knobs, handles, and light switches.

  4. Vacuum, sweep, and mop. Next you will want to focus on floors by doing a quick sweep then mopping the floors. If you do not have time to mix a solution, try using a portable spray mop.

  5. Swap out towels. Run around to all of your bathrooms and place clean hand towels out for drying. Make sure to throw the dirty towels in the washing machine.

  6. Clean the toilet bowls. Squirt some toilet bowl cleaner inside of your toilet and scrub them out with a toilet bowl brush.

  7. Light candles. Finish your cleaning off with some candles. They create a pleasant smell and they will set the tone for a relaxing evening.

Whether you are having company over or want to tidy up your house, this quick clean can come in handy. We hope you enjoyed these tips and tricks for a quick home cleaning. Let us know what you think in the comment section.

DIY Wooden Cutting Board

If you are in the kitchen a lot, you understand the importance of owning a quality cutting board. You can never have too many cutting boards when you are trying to prepare a giant meal. Buying wooden cutting boards can quickly become expensive. This summer, make your own wooden cutting board:

Supply List:
A Piece of Poplar Wood (Preferably: 1×10 x 3’)
Hand Saw
Drill and 5/8” Drill Bit
Tape Measure
Speed Square
Pencil
Butcher Block Oil
220-Grit Sanding Block
Cloth/Rag
Mild Dish Soap
Clean Dish Rag

Step One. Take your poplar wood and measure 16 inches. Mark a spot at the 16 inch mark and use a speed square to help you draw a straight line from the bottom of the wood to the top of the wood.

Step Two. Grab your hand saw and cut through the line you just drew.

Step Three. Now you are going to make a hole in the wood by taking your measuring tape and marking 1-1/2” from the perpendicular sides on the top left corner. Ultimately, you will have drawn a plus sign.

Step Four. Take your 5/8” drill bit and drill a hole through the plus sign.

Step Five. Using your sanding block, begin to sand off the any uneven corners of the wooden board. All sanding should be done gently and be aware off the edges.

Step Six. Pour your butcher block oil onto a cloth or rag. Then you will take the rag and begin to rub the butcher block oil onto the wood.

Step Seven. Let your wooden board dry overnight before using.

Step Eight. Clean off your board with mild, no dye dish soap and warm water. Make sure to completely dry off the wooden board with a clean dish rag.

Note: Try to not let any food sit on the cutting board for an extended period of time. Always clean your wooden cutting board as soon as possible to keep it in great condition.

Cutting boards are not only great gifts for yourself, but they are great gifts for families and friends. People will love this unique gift idea and cherish the craftsmanship.

Cleaning Hacks

Cleaning can be difficult and time-consuming. You want to make sure you clean your home effectively yet efficiently. You do not have endless time that you can devote to cleaning home, we get it. Let us help you navigate through cleaning your home in a time worthy manner.

Cleaning Hacks:

Dirty Microwave. Place one cup of water inside your microwave. Press two minutes on the keypad and let the water heat. After the two minutes, take a microfiber cloth and wipe down the inside of the microwave. The steam produced by the cup of water will help clean off leftover food and residue.

Smelly Fridge. Clean out your refrigerator and wipe down all the shelves. To reduce odor produced by food, place a small bowl of coffee grounds in the back of your fridge. This is a natural remedy to reduce odor in smelly refrigerators.

Grimy Mirror. Sometimes, our beauty products or toothpaste leave an noticeable residue on bathroom mirrors. To remove the residue, dip a cotton ball in some rubbing alcohol and wipe off the dirty marks.

Filthy Shower Head. Fill a sandwich bag with white vinegar. Attach the bag by tying a rubber band to the shower head. Have the bag sit overnight. In the morning, turn on your shower water and let it run for five minutes.

Allergy-Causing Sheets. The dirty sheets in your bedroom can increase any symptoms from your allergies. Make sure to wash your linens once a week to prevent these allergies.

Dusty Decorations. Decorations can collect a lot of dust in homes. Run a duster overtop of all decorations and framed photos. Spend extra time on wiping off your framed photos, because they tend to be a big dust collector.

Crumby Couch. Couches are home to food crumbs and dirt. Make sure to vacuum your sofa often to prevent unwanted pests.

Fabric Softener Build-up. Have you ever notice that your clothing iron is dirty? Make sure to clean your iron often to reduce the build up of fabric softener. You can combine baking soda with water to clean off the residue. Take the mixture and gently rub in circular motions. Lastly, you will need to take a damp cloth and rub away all leftover product.
Note: Try not to get the baking soda mixture inside the iron’s steam holes.

Now that is cleaning done fast and easy! What cleaning hacks do you use in your own home? Share your cleaning hacks with us in the comment section below.

Create a Romantic Breakfast in Bed

A Special Treat for the One Who Has It All

We live in a world where items can be purchased online or in person and be enjoyed immediately, so this doesn’t leave a lot of room when it comes to gift giving. What do you do for a special person in your life, whether it’s your parents, spouse or a friend coming to visit? Consider a kind gesture instead. The act of giving of one’s self without the need for something in return is something the person you do it for will not soon forget. One of the ways you can do something kind for someone, especially if they are in your home with you permanently or temporarily is to make them breakfast in bed. This shows you care for them and their needs while they are with you, and you want them to be as comfortable and welcomed as possible. You can make it a surprise or you can tell them in advance that they need not leave their room for breakfast time since it will be coming to them. That way you can inquire about their preferences for their meal. It can be as simple as a black coffee, orange juice and bowl of oatmeal or as fancy as a cappuccino, chocolate crepes and fresh fruit assortment-this is all about making the recipient feel valued.

Once they have placed their order, ask them what time would be best for them to receive their at-home room service and start gathering your supplies. To really make it special, use a large wooden serving tray with placemat covering and fabric napkin. Include a morning newspaper if they so desire and plate their food on a washable plate with silverware-no plastic forks or paper plates! For the final touch, add a handwritten note mentioning how much you appreciate them and the role they play in your life. At the end of their morning meal, they will hopefully be energized, ready for the day and grateful to have a wonderful person like you in their life. Never underestimate the impact of a kind gesture.

Guest Bedroom Must Haves

When getting a guest room ready for house guest, there are some things to consider. The guests should be comfortable and have some necessities. Read along to get a better understanding of stocking this room for comfort.

The bedding should be comfortable and versatile. Make sure the bedding is soft and layered. Always use the top sheet covered by a duvet or comforter. It is also nice to have a throw or quit folded up at the end of the bed. Do so just in case it gets cold at night. Guest can always take blankets away, but they can’t add warm bedding if it is not available to them.

Make sure there is storage space for their clothing, belongings and their suitcase. Storage for clothing should be a dresser with some free drawers available. It is a good idea to have room in a closet with empty hangers. It is nice to have the option to hang clothes when traveling. Also make sure there is enough room in the closet for guest to store their suitcase. If no closet is available add a luggage rack or two at the end of the bed. This is convenient for packing and unpacking, using the bed as a place to fold and get organized. Having the suitcases at the end of the bed on luggage racks, makes it easier to pack. Plus, the bedding will not get stains from dirty suitcase wheels.

Place at least one night stand next to the bed. Add a bedside lamp to the night stand as well. A bedside lamp will add extra lighting for guest to use at night.

Place clean towels on the bed before visitors arrive. Whenever possible have a place for people to hang their damp towels. It is nice to have racks on the back of the door. This allows for someone to get ready in their bedroom without having to go back to the bathroom and find a place to hang a damp towel.

Details make for an inviting space. To make the room extra welcoming add a vase of fresh flowers to the night stand or a dresser. Visitors will be very appreciative of your hospitality if you take the details into account.

Bringing the Bed And Breakfast to Your Home

Who doesn’t love a getaway? There’s nothing like escaping to your favorite bed and breakfast in the mountains and getting pampered for the weekend. If you’re really set on the bed and breakfast experience then it’s time to bring the getaway to your home.

Bringing the bed and breakfast feel to your home doesn’t have to cost an arm and a leg. Here are simple and affordable ways you can get started.

One of the best parts of a bed and breakfast is getting to relax in a fresh and clean room that’s free of clutter. So the first order of business is to declutter and declutter some more. That means all those old magazines in the corner and the storage bins filled with old clothes taking up space needs to go. There’s nothing that will kill the romance and relaxation faster than junk. You’ll want to make sure the room is cleaned every day and that the bed is made up.

  1. Quality bedding is a must have to simulate the feel of a bed and breakfast. There’s no way you’ll feel totally relaxed on cheap scratchy sheets. Therefore, you’ll want to invest in quality sheets and comforters with a high thread count. Purchase pretty sheets with a nice pattern that you will love to look at, and will bring you joy.

  2. Don’t forget the layers of warmth which will include the fluffy decorator pillows and the duvet. There’s nothing like sinking into a bunch of comfy pillows at the end of the night. Set the mood by setting up candles, investing up to a faux fireplace or purchasing glowing lampshades.

  3. You’ll want the bedroom to smell really good. Try using a linen spray to freshen up the sheets and the air in the room. Also, give some thought to the colors that you use to decorate the space. Because colors can contribute to the mood.

  4. Although you’re at home you can really make it a true getaway experience. That means you’ll want to be surrounded by beauty, peace and quiet. Enjoy!

Be An Expert In Organization

You are having company over and feel as if your home is one giant, disorganized mess. You do not know where to start, but things must get done! Take a deep breath, organizing does not need to be overwhelming. Start with one room at a time instead of jumping back and forth between rooms. Make a list of the things you want to accomplish then we are ready to begin:


1. Set a schedule. If you want to accomplish a lot before your guests arrive, you will need to make a schedule. The schedule should include your top priorities for each room, the amount of time it should take you, and your list of secondary priorities that you would like to accomplish if you have extra time. You will need to take into consideration how many days you have to organize your home before your guests arrive. If you have more than one day, try to spread the tasks out over the course of two days.

  1. Sort it out. Drawers, closets, and rooms get filled with an assortment of household items. To sort through them, you will need four piles: keep, donate, trash, and put away. First, your keep pile will be the essential items that you use regularly. Second, your donate pile will be things that are in good condition. Third, your trash pile will be things that are of no value. Lastly, your put away pile will be things that you want to keep, but can be stored for later use.

    Examples:
    Keep Pile: The current season’s clothing.
    Donate Pile: Jeans that do not fit you anymore.
    Trash Pile: A shirt you ripped underneath the arm and never wear.
    Put away Pile: Last season’s clothes (winter jackets, boots, etc.)

  2. Stash away. Storage is critical when you are organizing your home. You want to make sure that everything has a proper place to go. If you are low on storage, try purchasing low-budget storage containers or furniture. Bookshelves can be a perfect solution for your decorations.

  3. Stay sane! There is a lot to get done when you are trying to organize and clean your home, we totally get it. The most important step is to remain calm. Take breaks when you need them and do not push yourself past your breaking point. Keep in mind that things will get done because you have a plan. You just need to keep breathing and keep in mind that your company will still love you even if your house is not in perfect condition. Remember that our worst critic is always ourselves.

If you need more inspiration while organizing, turn on your favorite song to get you pumped. Music can boost your mood and help you get into the groove of straightening up. We hope these tips helped you with your organization efforts. If you have any tips of your own, we would love to hear them in the comment section below.