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Category: Three Things (page 2 of 3)

Three Essential Things…

As we dive into the new year, filled with new intentions…many times involving homemaking, today’s “three” are household items I no longer purchase. Instead, I’m making these products with essential oils. In fact, on New Year’s Day a fresh bottle of each of these was made.

Shower Spray – I came across this “recipe” over the summer on Stephanie’s blog and was instantly intrigued. Before long, I had ordered blue spray bottles and acquired the “non oils” ingredients. I vary the essential oils I use each time I make this – the current bottle is lemon & eucalyptus. I have Mom & Rebecca using the same spray now – we all have noticed that it definitely helps keep the shower cleaner. Since we weren’t keen about glass bottles in the tile showers, we ordered these JarJackets to provide a bit of glass safety.

Linen Spray – I used to buy a big bottle of lavender linen spray & use it on my bedding. In the fall, I made the switch to DIY and definitely won’t look back. Now, I follow this simple recipe – instead of lavender, I normally use the doterra Serenity oil (which is my preferred sleep oil for the diffuser). I keep the small bottle on my nightstand and spray my pillows each nite as I get ready for bed.

Fabric Softener – I’ll admit, this was triggered by a Facebook sponsored “life hack video” – although I can’t remember the specific brand promoting it – it was an appliance company. I go very basic – just white vinegar and a few drops of essential oil in a pretty kombucha bottle. As I looked at online recipes, many include baking soda – since I normally toss a scoop of baking soda in with each load of laundry, I kept it out of the mix. (A couple of years ago I stopped using fabric softener sheets & now just use wool dryer balls – when I remember to, I’ll put a few drops of an oil on the balls to provide drying freshness.)

I first started using essential oils in a diffuser about 18 months ago and since then have been increasing use in other areas.

What homemade cleaners do you use? How do you use essential oils?

Linking up with Carole and Kat for Three on Thursday

Three Things…Christmas Lights

For this Thursday, I’m sharing 3 of my favorite Christmas light spots down here in the Ville.

For as long as I can remember, our family has enjoyed piling in the car on a December evening to go look at Christmas lights – from small neighborhood displays to the spectacular Plaza Lights in Kansas City and everything in between – the view of Christmas lights through the window of a car filled with family is a pretty special Christmas tradition.

The Gaddy Family Christmas Lights Extravaganza – This is a Fayette County tradition of the best sort – a drive through display that expands each year. The traffic on the road now shows red on traffic maps most evenings & the county even has detour signs in place to help facilitate the hundreds & thousands that come nightly. The Gaddys collect donations for the March of Dimes in honor of a grand baby and also collect toys for Toys for Tots. This month, they were even featured on an episode of the Great Christmas Light Fight. Address: 898 Sandy Creek Road (Fayetteville)

The Stanfield Giant Christmas Tree – We first saw this mentioned in the local paper 2 years ago & it has quickly become a family favorite. The choreographed light show on the tree is gorgeous. You can drive through their driveway & property to view the show & also park to walk over to the display for photo opps, including a sweet & jolly Santa who has candy for the kids. The family that puts on this lights show collects donations for the nearby Georgia Baptist Children’s Home. Address: 187 Thompson Road (Tyrone)

The Pixel Tree in Peachtree City – in its second year, this is a fun display on a house in a quiet cul-de-sac. There is about a 20 minute choreographed show and the music is broadcast over an FM channel. Fun Christmas songs, a great Star Wars display, several songs for kids and a clever Hanukah song. Because this is lesser known, the street isn’t crowded & it’s easy to park & enjoy the show. While the whole property is decorated, the pixel tree is the star of the program & the rest of the lights don’t compete with it. Address: 107 Sumner Court Place (Peachtree City)

This week, I arrived home on Saturday and that night Mom, Rebecca & I loaded into the car with iced peppermint mocha coffees for a couple of hours of light looking. Because there is no such thing as too much light looking, this evening we are piling into the van with our pastor’s family for another trip around the county to catch some more Christmas glow.

What are your favorite Christmas light displays?

Linking up with Carole & Kat for Three Things Thursday.

Three Things…Joy

On this Thursday, a bit of joy…three pieces of Joy art that accent my minimal mantel this Christmas.

Collage JOY – A delightful original artwork by a friend (& former colleague) – as soon as she posted a picture of this on social media, I contacted Lindy and snapped it up for me. The rest of the year, this is included in an art wall in my spare bedroom. Lindy makes beautiful collages filled with thoughtful words and brilliant color and creative uses of papers, layers and paints. In addition to this piece I have another Lindy collage on my art wall and have commissioned her for a custom collage for a high school graduation gift.

Amaryllis Joy – I picked this up at Joann’s my first year here in PA. The combination of a favorite word and a favorite flower were perfect for adding to my Christmas decor.

Deer Joy – A fun addition this year from Michael’s, picked up right after Thanksgiving. A bit silly, a bit whimsy – it “pairs” with a Noel Cactus that I picked up for my sister and that is what makes me smile with this one.

JOY is one of my “words” – not only at Christmas but also throughout the year. In fact, over the years I have cultivated quite a collection of joy art – items that aren’t only reserved for Christmas decor but fill my home year round. Sometimes, the joy may be hidden – other times it is right there in front of you. Some moments may not feel like there is joy to be found and some moments the joy is just overflowing. No matter the circumstances, I’m always looking for the joy in the midst of it all.

Linking up with Carole & Kat for Three Things Thursday.

Three Things – on the Mantel

For this Thursday, a quick tour of the Christmas vignette on my mantel.

I knew this Christmas would not be one for “full on” Christmas decorating – I just don’t have it in me as we continue to navigate the “firsts” without Dad. But I did decide that a few items surrounded in lights on the mantel would be just the little bit of joy I need in the apartment for these few weeks I’m here before being home in the Ville for the holidays.

Painted Panda Carolers – Dad painted these for me in 1997 and brought them along when the family came to the Chicago area to celebrate Thanksgiving at my place. I’ve shared before about some of the ornamental treasures that Dad painted for me over the years. These pandas are the largest painted pieces Dad did and they can’t help but spark a smile whenever I see them.

Nativity Holy Family – I picked this group up in August 2010 on my first visit to Door County. Since then, I have amassed a complete nativity from this artist & it normally fills the entire mantel. I always chuckle that this Georgia made nativity found me in Wisconsin.

Salt Glaze Santa – New for 2017 is this charming Santa from a favorite pottery place in Lancaster County. While I have several pieces from there in my pottery collection, I’ve never started into their Annual Santa collection – they were cute but just never grabbed me. This year, however; is different – it is the last Santa because they are retiring and transferring store ownership. The Santa this year has a smile (previous years have been more stoic) and the cutest hand wave – which is a wave that Dad & I have done over the years.

What’s your holiday mantel vignette?

Linking up with Carole and Kat for Three Things Thursday.

Three Things, Roasted

On Monday, our office had our annual Thanksgiving luncheon. The turkey, dressing & mashed potatoes are catered in and served by our senior leaders. The rest of the menu is brought in by employees, potluck style. I signed up to bring roasted veggies.

So, at 5:50 am on Monday I was loading a sheet of veggies into the oven. Along the way I snapped this pic & shared to Facebook, as captioned below.

Early morning roasting…cider glazed butternut squash, Brussels sprouts & cranberries to take for today’s office Thanksgiving lunch…

Not long after posting the pic, a friend asked for the recipe which I then shared – as the day progressed, the recipe was shared by others & based on comments it appears this colorful dish may make an appearance at several Thanksgiving tables next week.

So, on this Thursday before Thanksgiving, it seemed appropriate to share this 3 ingredient pan for Three Things…

  1. Butternut Squash
  2. Brussels Sprouts
  3. Cranberries

I made a cider honey “dressing” to toss the veggies in which provided a bit of a glaze as the pan roasted.

Glaze: Olive oil + Cider-honey vinegar (or cider vinegar + a dribble of honey) + Fresh ground black pepper + Garlic salt + A dash of powdered ginger [Note: no measuring – but this probably totaled about 1/2 cup]

Since I was roasting these early on a Monday morning, I tossed the squash & sprouts with the glaze the night before & kept in the fridge.

To roast: Set oven to 425. Spread squash & sprouts on baking sheet. Roast @ 425 for 20 min. Stir the sheet & increase temp to 450. Roast for about 12 min. Stir & add a couple handfuls of cranberries. Roast for about 6 min. Enjoy!

After the luncheon, there was less than a serving spoon of leftovers – I think they were a hit! This is a favorite trio for autumn roasting for me – the seasonings may vary each time I prepare a sheet full of this goodness – but its always a simple & satisfying side dish.

Linking up with Carole & Kat for Three on Thursday

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