How do you make an inexpensive gift thoughtful?

Shopping for Christmas gifts can get expensive. Especially when you factor in all the friends from your social groups, teachers, and everyone else you want to get a small happy for. It’s just not reasonable to spend lots of money on each person so many times an inexpensive random gift is chosen and we hope the recipient appreciates us thinking of them.

But did we really just give them? Was it some inexpensive candle filled with chemicals, a thrifty dollar store find that may have been assembled in another country by underage/underpaid workers, or a box of candy made with artificial colors and food? Why not make your own gifts with natural AND inexpensive products that your friends/family will use and benefit from?

DIY Christmas Gifts

November 19 I am hosting an Easy DIY  Christmas Gifts Facebook Event that you can join in from the comfort of your own home.  Simply click the link above to RSVP and to ensure that you receive the notifications for the class.  Log in at 8:00 p.m cst to join in on the fun.

You are going to love the gift ideas that my friends and I have come up with. Some are for eating, others for soaking, and some just for enjoying.  Noah and Esther even helped make some. They love knowing they made the gift that they get to give to the special people in their life. Plus, as an added bonus we are making special memories as we made each of these gifts.

What are your favorite handmade gifts to make each year?  One of my all time favorites is Peppermint Bark.

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An Enchanted Pink Belle Party

I am writing this post on the eve of Noah’s fourth birthday.  Fourth!  How did that happen?  Time. That’s how. It never stops and always keeps moving forward.  Oh, if only I could slow it down.  But I can’t, so I’ll cherish the memories (and the gobs of pictures).

November 10 is Noah’s special day but we had her birthday party back on the 1st of November.  Noah is one of those kids who when you ask them what they want they immediately give you their specific answer.  So a few moths ago when I asked her what kind of party she wanted she immediately responded, “I want a pink Belle birthday party.”


Pink Belle. Just what exactly did that mean?  It meant Belle from Beauty and the Beast dressed in pink.  I questioned her just to make sure she didn’t mean Aurora from Sleeping Beauty or Bell in the more traditional yellow dress. Nope, it meant Belle wearing pink.  Well, like last year when she requested a “green frog” birthday party she never wavered from her decision.  When this question was first asked she had not even seen the movie so all she knew was Belle in a yellow dress.  And for me it had easily been at least 20 years since I had last seen Beauty and the Beast.  So, I was sure I had my work cut out for me.

Then I came across this picture.

pink belle snow Pink Belle does exist!

And from there the party planning started.  For starters we needed an actual “Pink Belle” dress.

Noah as Pink Belle

Mission accomplished!  My mom found this adorable princess dress with a cape at TJ Maxx.  It’s not an exact replica of the original Pink Dress but it passed Noah’s inspection.

Next up… a castle.  My inspiration for the castle comes from this photo still of Beauty and the Beast.

pink belleIt’s what I wanted the setting of the party to be.   So it was time to turn our ordinary dining room into a castle.

Dining RoomFirst up, creating the windows and the scenery beyond.  To start with I hung a 12 foot roll of blue paper from wall to wall to create the sky.

Pink Belle PartyThen I measured out 1′ squares on the paper to work as the frames for the window panes.  After that I hung four red plastic table cloths from the ceiling to act as my draperies.Pink Belle Dress

In hindsight, I wish I would have overlapped them a little more so that the white wall wasn’t exposed at the top. After the draperies were hung the fun began.


Pink Belle PartyI used three acrylic paint colors to create the outside scene… blue, brown, and white.  Using the movie still from above I sketched out my trees and then filled them in with green.  After this was done I used my brown to add a barren tree and the window frames.  And then white for the snow!20151101_154752I was so excited! Thankfully, Noah was too.  When we were younger, my sister brought back Mrs. Potts and Chip from one of our trips to Disney World.  They along with the red rose made the perfect centerpiece for the table.  To give the allusion of the rose floating I tied it to a piece of thread and then taped it to the top. It worked perfectly.

Pink Belle PartyMrs. Potts and Chip were joined by their friends Lumiere and our un-named china cabinet.  I stored all the plates, napkins, cups,and utensils for the party in the china cabinet and brought them out as needed.

Pink Belle PartyPink Belle Party… and little Chips for everyone.

Chip at Pink Belle PartyNow we were ready to party.  So what exactly do you do for fun at a Pink Belle Party?

For starters you play games.  I founds some cute and age appropriate Beauty and the Beast games to play here.  Next, for the perfect Pink Belle party the Beauty and the Beast soundtrack must be playing in the background.

And, finally there must be a feast!Pink Belle Party

It was a four course feast!

  1. congealed salad
  2. bread & citrus butter
  3. chicken nuggets, orange sweet potatoes, and carrots
  4. chocolate cupcakes with a red rose on top


I wish I had pictures of all the courses but it all happened in such a whirlwind. The children absolutely loved it though.  For each course they were given a new plate and then I came by and served each of them.  They had so much fun eating a “fancy” feast!

And what feast at Beast’s castle would be complete without the Beast himself.

Beast at Pink Belle PartyAs the day of the party neared Noah kept telling Michael Luke that he was going to be Beast and she was Belle.  Eventually, we decided he better come up with some type of Beast outfit. He came stomping and growling out of our bedroom dressed like this and served everyone their chicken nuggets.  The Beast was definitely a crowd favorite and especially a Noah favorite.

Pink Belle PartyAfter it wall over I managed to get my picture in with the little princess.  She absolutely enjoyed her birthday party and watching our dining room turn into a castle.

Check out Noah’s 1st, 2nd, and 3rd parties for a look back at all of Noah’s birthday adventures.

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Caring for Your Children Beyond Oils

My love for Young Living extends beyond just essential oils.  The more I become aware of all the chemicals and toxins used in products the more I fall in love with Young Living and their Seed to Seal policy.  I love their commitment to purity.

Here’s a few of my favorite products other than essential oils from Young Living.  These are all oil infused products which means essential oils are used in each one.  As I learn more and more about essential oils I understand why certain oils are included in certain products. They all serve a function.  Research them so that you too can understand their purpose.

Caring for your child beyond Essential Oils

KidScents Tender Tush – KidScents®Tender Tush is a gentle ointment that nourishes and protects skin with soothing ingredients like coconut, olive, and wheat germ oils. The all-natural ingredients in Tender Tush soothe the delicate skin in the diaper area while gentle essential oils provide comforting aromatherapy. Tender Tush is also great for expectant mothers who are concerned with stretch marks.

tender tush

KidScents® Tender Tush contains: natural ingredients, therapeutic-grade essential oils, no mineral oils, no synthetic perfumes, and no artificial colorings.

KidScents Shampoo – KidScents® Shampoo has a safe, mild formula designed to provide the perfect pH balance for children’s delicate skin. It contains MSM, a natural sulfur compound known to strengthen hair, along with aloe vera, chamomile, and other nourishing herbs and vitamins.


KidScents® Shampoo contains: natural ingredients, therapeutic-grade essential oils, no mineral oils, no synthetic perfumes, no artificial coloring, and no toxic ingredients.

KidScents Bath Gel – KidScents® Bath Gel is a safe, gentle, and mild all-natural liquid soap that contains MSM ( a natural form of sulfur that promotes healthy, clear skin), soothing aloe vera, a mix of antioxidant vitamins and botanicals, and fragrant essential oils to leave tender skin feeling soft and refreshed. KidScents Bath Gel has the perfect pH balance for children’s skin. It contains natural ingredients, therapeutic grade essential oils, no mineral oils, no synthetic perfumes, no artificial colorings and no toxic ingredients.

bath gel

KidScents MightyVites – Using nutrient-dense whole food sources, the new MightyVites contain superfruits, plants and veggies that deliver the full-spectrum of vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and phytonutrients for children’s developing bodies. The new MightyVites chewable tablets feature an enhanced vitamin-mineral source and two new and improved natural flavors: orange cream and mixed berry.


KidScents MightyZymes – KidScents® MightyZyme is an all-natural, vegetarian product in the form of chewable tablets designed to help children combat the negative effects of enzyme depletion. MightyZyme chewables address each of the digestive needs of growing bodies and assist normal digestion of all foods, including proteins, carbohydrates, and fats.


Lavender Hand and Body Lotion – Bring life back to your skin with this all-natural lightweight moisturizer infused with skin-loving lavender essential oil. Added nutrients such as wolfberry seed and jojoba oils fortify your skin’s natural moisture barrier to maintain long-lasting hydration.

lavender hand and body lotion

KidScents Slique Toothpaste – This new formula is an all-natural toothpaste for kids that uses Thieves® and Slique™ Essence essential oil blends to gently clean and protect teeth. This safe, yet effective, blend promotes healthy teeth without the use of fluoride, dyes, synthetic colors, artificial flavors, or preservatives.

KidScents Toothpaste

Thieves Waterless Hand Purifier – Thieves® Waterless Hand Purifier utilizes powerful essential oils to clean and purify hands. Moisturizing emollients, Aloe Vera and vegetable glycerin, enrich our formula and add their hydrating benefits.

thieves hand purifier

Melaleuca-Geranium Bar Soap™ is made with pure botanical oils that are easily absorbed, while the essential oils of melaleuca, geranium, and vetiver soothe and moisturize, creating healthy skin naturally.

Mel-a Geranium

Orange Blossom Facial Wash – Orange Blossom Facial Wash™ is a gentle, nonabrasive, free-rinsing cleanser that removes dirt and makeup without stripping skin of natural oils. It contains MSM to promote healthier and clearer skin, wolfberry seed oil to hydrate, and essential oils to soothe with aromatic benefits. Added botanicals protect skin from free radical damage.

Orange blossom

Over the past two years we have worked to switch out product after product in our house for Young Living products because we love the Seed to Seal Promise.  Our bodies come in contact with enough junk everyday.  We have the choice to take action and support our girl’s bodies using safe and natural products.

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