#IBN30

What Doesn’t Kill Ya

Toes in the Water, toes in the sand...Life if good today!

Toes in the Water, toes in the sand…Life is good today!

Hey Yall, have you heard the saying “What doesn’t kill ya, makes ya stronger”?    Yep, I thought so, cause I know I heard it all my life.  There’s even a song about this…by Kelly Clarkson.  I want to explain what this means to me today.

30 days ago I accepted the challenge.  That challenge was to blog every day for 30 days.  Well, I MADE it!  Today is the end of the 30 day challenge.  I am here to tell ya that it didn’t kill me.  Was it hard, heck yeah it was hard…that’s why it’s called a challenge.  And yes there were struggles.  Struggles with myself, struggles with making the time, and struggles with technology.  Ya see to commit to doing something for 30 days…it’s easy to say you can do it.  And then the reality sets in and you have to be disciplined and just do it.

What this showed me was that honestly, I CAN DO ANTHING that I set my mind to.  It takes a plan of action…even a flawed one.  It takes commitment…even on the days you just want to throw in the towel.  It takes discipline…sitting down and writing…even when you are on a mini vacation at the beach…getting the evil eye from family members.  You do it, cause you made the commitment.

Am I proud of myself…heck yeah!!!!  Will I keep it up, since it has become a habit…yes, I will.  But…it will not be every day.  That part of the challenge was the hardest.  So I will work to blog no less than 2 times a week.  Thanks to those that came along for the journey.  It was a blast and I look forward to continuing this journey.  #IBN30

Until next time, Blessings and Bubbles,

Sandy

I Love Lavender

Lavender with bee

Lavender with bee

Hey Yall, I LOVE Lavender!  Lol, no surprise there, huh?  Since I use it in so many of our great products.

Lavender has a sweet, floral aroma that is soothing and refreshing.  Lavender is one of the oldest known herbs.  It is a flowering plant and is native to the Mediterranean region and is also grown in many countries throughout the world.  There are so many different varieties of Lavender, and such a broad range of colors from snow white, yellows, greens, light and dark pinks, reds, and mauves.  There are shades of blues and violets as well.  This was news to me, like most people I thought Lavender’s only color was…well…lavender or purple.  And yes, it does come in a variety of purples…my favorite!

Lavender is one of the most popular scents in the world.  One of which most people love as well.  When I was first introduced to Lavender Essential oil, I knew I had found a true Lavender…not the artificial kind that never seemed to smell like I thought it should.  Lavender has been touted as a cure all for anything that ales you.  While I agree it has some medicinal uses, one still has to be careful.  Lavender historically has been common ingredient in medicine bags as far back as the 16th Century.  Lavender is a practical herb with many uses.

Some common uses of Lavender:

Add a few drops to warm bath water along with some Epsom salts, great for detoxifying

Potpourri

Relieves tension and headaches

Calms nerves

Soothes insect bites

Eye pillows and sachets

Insomnia

Minor cuts, scrapes and athletes foot

Although lavender is an herb and natural, it can be dangerous if used incorrectly.  Please take precautions if you are allergic to any other herbs.  This information is based on historic use of lavender, for general reference, and our own personal experiences with lavender.  In no way do we claim to cure, treat or prevent any disease.   #IBN30

Until next time, Blessings and Bubbles,

Sandy

Frozen Strawberry Coconut Margarita

Strawberry Margarita

Strawberry Margarita

Hey Yall, it’s Saturday, and a hot day at that.  So, in order to cool off, I am going to share a drink mix with you from sarabakesgfree.com.  It’s a Strawberry Coconut Margarita…now don’t get you panties in a wad until you try it.

Here’s what you will need:

Strawberry Coconut Margarita

Makes 2

1 ½ cups ice

1 cup frozen strawberries (I have some in the freezer from the spring)

1 cup ready to drink Golden Margarita Mix (tequila and triple sec added)

½ cup unsweetened coconut milk

2 tbls honey (I try to find local raw honey when possible)

Pink Himalayan salt (for garnish, you can find on the seasoning isle)

Rim 2 glasses with water and dip the edges into the Pink Himalayan salt.  Shake off any excess.  Set aside.  In a blender, combine the ice, frozen strawberries, margarita mix, coconut milk and honey.  Blend on high until smooth…no test tasting…just yet.  Pour into the prepared glasses and serve immediately.  Repeat as necessary.

I usually don’t drink frozen drinks, but on a hot afternoon, this is a dreamy, creamy margarita that is just a wee bit sweet but oh so refreshing.  Keep this in mind for that next girls’ night or if you have a pool, at your next pool party.  Please drink responsibly.  Don’t drink and drive.  #IBN30

Until next time, Blessings and Bubbles,

Sandy

Scrub Everything

Making Scrub Everything

Making Scrub Everything

Hey Yall I have another DIY for ya today.  Are you tired of using all those toxic cleaners in your home?  Well how about a Scrub Everything?  Yep, you read that right everything…this stuff is like soft scrub.  It can be used on sinks, toilets, ice chests, on boats, you name it!  Anything that is greasy or grimy and yep, it’s non-toxic to everything.

So here’s what you will need:

Scrub Everything

2 cups baking soda

1 to 1 ½ cups distilled water

¼ cup Sal Suds (Dr. Bronners Sal Suds)

10 drops of Peppermint Essential Oil

2 tbl vinegar

Large squeeze bottle

2 or 3 marbles (and not I don’t have any extra to give you…that would leave me with no marbles at all, lol)

Get you a nice size bowl, medium to large, and place all of the above ingredients into the bowl in the order listed (baking soda thru Peppermint Essential Oil).  You will need to stir this well.  I usually have on rubber gloves and just use my hands.  You want to make sure it is placed in the bowl in this order.  With the Vinegar being very LAST.  Slowly add the vinegar as it will start to foam…and if you are not careful it will foam over.  Stir until it settles down.  Add the marbles to the squeeze bottle, then add the scrub everything into a squeeze bottle.  When ready to use, shake well and get cleaning.  If you have any left over, you will want to keep this in an air tight container, otherwise it will dry out.  If it does, just revive with water and a few more drops of Peppermint Essential Oil.  #IBN30

Until next time, Blessings and Bubbles,

Sandy

 

Interview with Wandering Thistle

Wandering Thistle Peacock Swirl

Wandering Thistle Peacock Swirl

Hey Yall, once again I have had the opportunity to interview a very wonderfully creative entrepreneur.  Please come along and get to know Theresa Mendez with Wandering Thistle.

TPS: Theresa, what is the name of your company and how did you come up with it?

Theresa:  You know it is an interesting journey into my psyche. I absolutely love wildflowers, they just grow where they land, taking root in some of the craggiest places. I have always admired these tall, strong, resilient, but prickly purple thistles. It seems they could withstand anything. The flowering top is always welcoming to butterflies to be nourished or to sit a spell and rest. But if someone tries to destroy it through mishandling, grabbing, etc it has a built in protective barrier of tiny, prickly thorns that leaves the aggressor thinking better of those actions.  The Scottish revere a Thistle as a sign of loyalty; having a wee bit in my ancestral pool made it more endearing to me. Tagging on the Wandering part is the heart of who I am.  I have an insatiable desire to learn, to create, to explore.  It just seemed appropriate to me to put those together.

TPS:  Is this a family owned company?

Theresa:  Yes, I am the CEO and my family puts in a lot of hours helping me when they can or when there is a large wholesale order that needs to get delivered.

TPS:  How long have you been making soap and or soap products?  And how long in business?

Theresa:  Hmmm…many years ago a good friend of mine & I decided we wanted to make soap. I bought a wood mould, a book and a kit with a few supplies. It was seriously a Lucy & Ethel moment!  Many more years past and on a weekend getaway to Fredericksburg, I encountered Goat Milk Soap. That was 5 years ago, I haven’t looked back. I taught myself how to make GM soap, made a lot of mistakes along the way, but the desire to conquer soap making was a driving force for me.

TPS:  What attracted you to this field?

Theresa:  I am driven by challenges, the desire to learn and create. I saw many individuals in my Home Health career as an Occupational Therapist that were suffering from skin issues and applying massive amounts of topical ointments for relief. After discussing their bathing rituals many of them just needed a good handcrafted soap without all of the detergents that were stripping their skin of their natural oils. I saw a need beyond myself.

TPS:  Do you have a favorite technique?

Theresa:  Very good question, I enjoy a hanger swirl. But I really love a Peacock Swirl!

TPS:  Do you have a favorite type of soap to make?

Wandering Thistle  Texas Thistle Beer Soap

Wandering Thistle
Texas Thistle Beer Soap

Theresa:  I make all kinds of soap, from my Texas Beer Soap Co. line to fancy swirls.

TPS:  What prompted you to open a studio?

Theresa:  I retired from Occupational Therapy February 2014. We were growing with added wholesale accounts and just needed the space. I found I could not work as productive as I needed to at home, even though I had a designated studio space. I always felt distracted.

TPS:  What all do you offer at your studio?  Classes and products?

Theresa:  We have a variety of Spa Bath & Body products, salts, scrubs, souffles, etc as well as our GM Soap line, and Texas Beer Soap & Beard Balms for the guys.  We will be offering all types of classes; there are a lot people out there that want to be creative, but are fearful of trying something new by themselves and need a fun place to explore. For example, we have classes scheduled for making kombucha, terrariums, and other creative DIY’s, as well as intensive soap making and aromatherapy classes.

TPS:  Do you continue to hone your skill?

Theresa:  Having completed an Aromatherapy Certification program, I will continue to study the science of Essential Oils and Herbs. I love blending essential oils, the possibilities are endless, but definitely something that requires safety & respect.

TPS:  Will you continue to do shows or festivals?

Theresa:  I will definitely cut back on shows, but will leave my options open.

TPS:  If you have any advice to offer someone starting out…what would that be?  Either dos or don’ts.

Theresa:  Take your time to learn and but don’t be afraid to explore. Keep a balance in your life as much as possible. It is easy to escape into the soapy world. Perfect a product or technique before moving on.

TPS:  What do you love or hate about being an entrepreneur?

Theresa:  Sandy, this is such a powerful question, Let’s do love first: Independence, creativity, decision making, freedom to explore, to grow, to give. To challenge myself to be better each day.   Not Love: decision making (self doubt), exhaustion, it can be lonely at times, growing pains, sleepless nights, I have to put my big girl panties on every day. :0

TPS:  And lastly how has Wandering Thistle taken you where you wanted to go as a career or job?

Theresa:  Oh, I am just beginning. Having the studio is a new chapter to explore. A new challenge that brings me closer to my community. Not as a taker, but to give; to give the joy of creativity, friendship, learning, & exploring. Want to wander with me?  #IBM30

Until next time, Blessings and Bubbles,

Sandy

 

An Oh Sh#%t Moment

Martin

Martin

Hey y’all, ever have an Oh Sh#%t moment? Well, I did this morning. Now if you have been following along, you probably know I’m at the beach for a few days.

We start this day like any of the past few days. But this morning is different….someone’s ringing the doorbell. Amanda goes to see who it is, I’m still in my jammies…and it is housekeeping…they were coming to clean the condo…what the heck? I mean we are not leaving till tomorrow. Oh, and this was 2 hours before “check out time”, which is 10am.

We finish our breakfast, and still sipping on the coffee Amanda and I are just chatting…one of my other “adopted” daughters is on here way here to spend some time with us…she will be here, shortly. And then we wonder why they wanted to clean. It’s about 9:30, and I pull out my copy of my reservation….and it’s OH SH#%T!!!! My reservation says we were supposed to leave today….surely they have it wrong…I mean I KNEW what days I was staying and when I was going home…or so I thought.

Thank goodness I already had my make up on and was dressed…I grab my phone and key and head down to the lobby. If I’m wrong….and we know thats not possible, we have less than 30 minutes to get packed and get out of here…might I remind you with a 22 month old toddler…and we have a guest just about here…oh sh#%t!

As it turns out…I um, well, um, I messed up. Ok, I said it…I messed up. Well, the lady behind the counter politely tells me, we are scheduled to leave today…in less than 30 mins…with a guest on the way. Ok what to do…can we just stay where we are for another night? Sure for a hefty fee…hmmm, then the other lady comes out from the back and offers the room for 50% off…well heck yeah. So crisis has been averted…now to get back into relax mode…and back onto the beach with the girls and Martin.   #IBN30

Until next time, Blessings and Bubbles,
Sandy

My Beach Buddy

Martin Beach Buddy

Martin Beach Buddy

Hey Y’all, I’m in the process of creating/making my very own beach buddy. Can we say woohoo?

Day 2 on the beach…yestarday my little Monkey, was getting into the hang of the beach in the afternoon. He was playing at waters edge, having a ball. Lol, even had a wave or 2 knock him down…now that was funny, so we laughed to keep him from getting scared…and yes he came up laughing…whew…didn’t want y’all to think I was a mean MeMaw. Martin was playing in the sand…something he had hated earlier in the morning…what a change in attitude lunch and a nap make.

We are on day 2, of making me a beach buddy…and, well, so far so good. As most of you know by now, I love the beach…sun, sea…and sand. So to have a little one that’s loves it as much as I do…well that’s priceless. It was another good day to be on the beach, to be a Mama….but most of all to be a MeMaw.

Do you have a favorite place that you love to go? Do you have a special buddy to enjoy it with? If so, I’d love to hear about it…just post in the comments below. #IBN30

Until next time, Blessings and Bubbles,
Sandy

On the Beach

Amanda and Martin

Amanda and Martin

Hey Y’all! Day 1 on the beach…it takes a moving van to get 2 little boys, 2 Mamas and Me to the beach. So much stuff to carry…I’m def getting my workout walking to the beach.  Oh my, I forgot what it takes to get little ones to the beach.

Martin so hates the sand…he just stood there in the sand and would not move…but you pick him up and carry him and he’s fine….guess who carried the little Monkey…MeMaw of course. Funny ya put him down and he does not move…so I took him to the water and let him stand with his feet getting wet…well, that was ok. So Martin and MeMaw go walking down the beach hand in hand. You could see in his face, ok, this may not be so bad after all…just stay away from the sand.

Martin is starting to get the hang of this, he even starts picking up some shells to collect and bring back to his Mama…what a sweetheart. I helped him wash off the first shell and then as he sees shells, he goes further into the water to wash them off. Yep, we lost a few in the tide…but not to worry, there were plenty more to pick from.

So Amanda picks him up and carries him into the water…now he’s really a happy camper…he loves water.  He’s such a sweet boy, my heart is so full.  #IBN30

Until next time, Blessing and Bubbles,

Sandy

Mama and Me x 3

Rain and beach

Rain and beach

Hey Y’all!  It’s a road trip to the beach with Mama and Me x3. Let’s star with a bit of background. Mama, that’s Me, Me is my daughter(Amanda) and my “adopted” daughter(Cheryl), x3 is my grandson(Martin) and my “adopted” grandson(Deagan)…3 generations.

We got up early, finished packing and get loaded into the car, give hubby a good bye kiss. I said to Amanda, ya ready, let’s geaux…and Martin yells Geaux! So we geaux…

We have to travel thru Mississippi. While in Mississippi, we stop at the Outlet Mall…everybody needs a little retail therapy. And a good time to let the boys out to stretch their legs and burn off some energy…after all these handsome young gents are not even 2 yet. After a bit to eat, we are back on the road….beach here we come…

Alabama was a wild ride, and what should have been the shortest part of the trip turned into the longest part. Can we say rain….OMGosh we ran into some of the worst rain I have had to drive in, in a long time…but we did make it to the condo…and the beach. I am a happy camper…

Stay tuned for our beach adventures. #IBN30

Until next time, Blessings and Bubbles,
Sandy

Gratitude

Gratitude

Gratitude

Hey Yall!  I have been thinking about what it means to have gratitude.  Gratitude is defined as the quality of being thankful.  Gratitude is an emotion expressing appreciation for what one has, as opposed to what one wants.  I have been working slowly, but surely to create a gratitude journal.  Some days it’s easy to write in the journal.  And well some days, not so much.

I have so much to be thankful for…and not just on Thanksgiving…but every day.  I am grateful to live in the country, out away from the hustle and bustle of the city.  I am grateful to be a wife, a mama, a memaw (too young to be a granny or mawmaw), a daughter, a sister, an aunt and a friend.  Those are the things no one can take from me…this is my gratitude.

I am so very thankful that I have a husband that supports what I love to do.  I am very thankful to have you, my loyal clients that love the products I make.  This is what continues to drive me on some days.  Lol, like when a batch of soap goes terribly wrong…yeah, I’ve had my share of those this year…but it’s all good.

With so much turmoil and bad news in the world today, I’m happy to be right here with you.  I am grateful and I am content. I hope you feel the same way about your life. Maybe after reading this blog, it will remind you of the many blessings you have.  If you stop and look around, I think you will agree.  And if you do, please share what you are grateful for.  #IBN30

Until next time, Blessings and Bubbles,

Sandy