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DIY Cellulite Zapping Lotion Bar

Since it’s officially Summer, now, you know what that means. . .  . Shorts, swimsuits, and a lot less coverage. Which, of course, draw attention to something most women would rather not: Cellulite. 

A.k.a. Orange peel. Cottage cheese. Dimples. Adiposis edematosis. 

Which brings us to Cellulite Zapping Lotion Bars. Made by infusing the oils with coffee grounds for at least a month, so that the bars are packed with caffeine to plump up skin and temporarily minimize the appearance of cellulite. The addition of whole coffee beans on top turns these into a massage type bar and a small amount of lemongrass essential oil makes the scent ultra refreshing and invigorating. 

Cellulite Bar

Don’t want to bother making it? Cellulite Bars are currently listed in the shop.

Also available, Vanilla Latte Coffee + Goat Milk Scrubby Soap. 

Or check out the full shop on Etsy, MaidenHillFarm.

Now, before I begin, let me mention that there are two parts to this DIY recipe. Infusing the oils with caffeine and then using those caffeinated oils to make the cellulite bars. 

How To Infuse The Oils

Ingredients:

3/4 cup of coffee grounds

6 oz olive oil

1.5 oz safflower oil

1 oz avocado oil

10 drops vitamin E 

.50 oz argan oil

.75 oz evening primrose oil

*Feel free to substitute any liquid oils you’d like. 

Directions:

Place all of the ingredients in a seal-able glass container (I usually use a large mason jar). 

Seal and store in a cool, dark place (I store mine at the back of a cabinet) for at least one month to give the oils plenty of time to become infused with caffeine. While the oils are infusing, at least once or twice a week, give the jar a good shake to mix everything up. 

After the month long infusion period, strain the oils into a separate container (I use cheesecloth to strain it). Discard the coffee grounds.

Cellulite Buster Bars

Ingredients

  • 4 oz oils
  • 4.5 oz beeswax
  • 4 oz cocoa butter
  • .25 oz lemongrass essential oil

Instructions

  1. *All amounts are in weight.
  2. In a microwave safe container, melt the beeswax and cocoa butter. Start off by heating for 1 minute. Check the wax and cocoa butter to see if it is melted. If not, then melt in 30 second increments, checking after each time. Do not leave unattended. Alternately, you can also use the double boiler method to melt the wax and butter.
  3. Once completely melted, add in 4 ounces of infused oils and a quarter of an ounce of lemongrass essential oil. Stir really well to make sure the mixture is completely combined.
  4. Pour the mixture into a mold. Sprinkle whole coffee beans on top.
  5. Allow the bars to cool and harden for at least an hour. Then, place the mold into the freezer for 15 minutes. This helps in unmolding the bars.
  6. Remove from the freezer and turn the mold upside down over a table or countertop. The bars should immediately drop out of the mold.
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I use a mold exactly like this one

 

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Spring Has Sprung Giveaway!

The latest giveaway from The Country Chick and my Etsy shop, MaidenHillFarm, is finally here! 

Enter to win the following:

1 Preservative Free Beeswax Solid Lotion Bar

1 Beeswax Lip Balm

And 1 Small Beeswax/Cocoa Butter Cellulite/Massage Bar

In a cute, reusable muslin gift bag. 

Spring Has Sprung Giveaway

Now for the legalese: Open to entries from the US only. One lucky winner will be chosen at random when the contest ends on March 22, 2015 at 12:00 AM CST. The winner will be contacted by email to obtain their mailing address – if after 48 hours I haven’t received a response, a new winner will be chosen. When you sign in to Rafflecopter make sure to include an email address so that I can contact you. As soon as possible, I will mail out the prize.

P.S. If you don’t want to wait until the end of the giveaway, please visit my shop on Etsy here.

Best of luck to everyone!!!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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DIY Neapolitan Bubble Bath Bars (um. . . Scoops).

I’m always on the lookout for new DIY bath/body type products to add to the Etsy shop. And one of those things that I’ve had my eye on for a while were bubble bath bars. 

Now, you might have seen bubble bath bars sold at stores that sell Luscious bath products. See what I did there? Totally not going to say the name of the store, but you get it 😉 

But if you haven’t seen them before, here’s a little rundown on what they are. . . . 

DIY Bubble Bath Scoops

Imagine if you took a bath bomb, but instead of fizzing, it created lots of thick, creamy bubbles. And I really do mean lots of them. 

Now, what creates the bubbles? 

Sodium Lauryl Sulfoacetate.

Or better known as SLSa. Not to be confused with SLS (a.k.a. Sodium Lauryl Sulfate), which is something totally different and unrelated. Now, for a little explanation about their differences. . . . Because honestly, I had to google it when I first started researching bubble bath bars. 

SLS is a chemical detergent found in most commercial shampoos, toothpastes, soaps (not mine, of course!), and cleansing products that need to foam or lather up. It’s used throughout the commercial bath/beauty industry because it is extremely cheap and it does it’s job. But here’s the troubling part, and why you won’t see it listed on any ingredients list of a product that I make. 

Because of it’s small molecular structure, SLS is easily absorbed into the skin. Which wouldn’t be so bad, if it wasn’t connected with skin irritations, headaches and migraines, nausea, possible carcinogenic ingredients, etc. 

SLSa, on the other hand, is derived from coconut and palm oils. It’s known to be skin safe, and because it has a larger molecular structure, it isn’t as easily absorbed. But it is a little more expensive, which is probably why most bath/body companies choose a cheaper ingredient for their products. 

So, there you have it, the difference between the two ingredients. Which means, it’s time to tell you how to make bubble bath bars. Um, I mean, scoops. Because it’s so much easy to scoop them than to do all that rolling, patting, and slicing . . . . no thanks!

 

The ingredients: 

1/2 cup baking soda 

1/2 cup Lathanol LAL Powder – aka SLSa 

2 Tablespoons + 2 teaspoons Cornstarch 

2 Tablespoons + 2 teaspoons Bubble Bar Hardener (a.k.a. Cream of Tartar)

3 Tablespoons + 2 teaspoons Vegetable Glycerin*

3 teaspoons Castor Oil

1.5 mL Strawberry Kiwi Fragrance Oil

1 mL Chocolate Espresso Fragrance Oil

1 mL Vanilla Buttercream Fragrance Oil

1/4 teaspoon pink colorant

1/2 teaspoon Vegetable Glycerin

1/2 teaspoon cocoa powder

1 teaspoon Vegetable Glycerin

Small ice cream scoop

*There’s a chance you might use more than what is listed. 

Begin by measuring the dry ingredients (Baking Soda, SLSa, Cornstarch, and Bubble Bar Hardener) and placing them in a large bowl.  

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Be sure to wear a face mask while measuring the SLSa as it is very fine and will irritate your throat/lungs.

Using a whisk or fork, stir together the dry ingredients until they’re completely combined together. 

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Measure out the Castor Oil and Vegetable Glycerin and add them to the mixture. Using your gloved hands, mix together the ingredients until the liquid is completely dispersed throughout. 

Divide the mixture into three different bowls. 

In a small cup, combine about a 1/4 teaspoon of pink colorant (this is the one I use) with just enough vegetable glycerin to wet the powder. Mix together and set aside. In another cup, combine about a 1/2 teaspoon of cocoa powder with just enough vegetable glycerin to wet the powder. Mix together and set aside. 

In one bowl, test to see if the mixture is the right consistency by squeezing a small amount in your palm. If the mixture holds its shape when you open your hand, then it’s ready. If it’s not the right consistency, add a small amount of vegetable glycerin. Mix it in by hand, and test again. Once it is the right consistency, set this bowl aside for now. . . . Since it is supposed to be the vanilla part of our bubble bath scoops, it will remain uncolored and unscented. 

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In the second bowl, add Strawberry Kiwi body safe fragrance oil and a few drops of the pink color mixture. Using your gloved hands, mix together until completely combined. Test to see if the mixture is the right consistency in the same manner that you did above. Set aside once it is.

In the third bowl, add the cocoa powder mixture and the Chocolate Espresso and Vanilla Buttercream fragrances. Because vanilla scented fragrances can cause products to turn brown, I added to this mixture instead of the white mixture. Mix together using your gloved hands (use a new pair of gloves to keep from contaminating the brown bubble bath mixture with the pink). Test to see if the mixture is the right consistency. 

Pour all three colors of bubble bath mixture into one large bowl. Very lightly mix them together using your gloved hands; you don’t want them to be completely mixed together. 

Pack an ice cream scoop or small cookie scoop with the mixture, pressing down hard. Place each scoop on a lined tray.

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***I know, I know. The above photo is completely the wrong color to be Neapolitan scoops. Simple explanation for that: I was actually making three different batches at once (Wild Blackberry, Neapolitan, and Frosted Cranberry), and I completely to take the requisite photo until the last batch. Which obviously wasn’t Neapolitan. 

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Allow them to air dry for at least 24 – 48 hours before using. 

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DIY Neapolitan Bubble Bath Scoops

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup baking soda
  • 1/2 cup Lathanol LAL Powder - aka SLSa
  • 2 Tablespoons + 2 teaspoons Cornstarch
  • 2 Tablespoons + 2 teaspoons Bubble Bar Hardener (a.k.a. Cream of Tartar)
  • 3 Tablespoons + 2 teaspoons Vegetable Glycerin*
  • 3 teaspoons Castor Oil
  • 1.5 mL Strawberry Kiwi Fragrance Oil
  • 1 mL Chocolate Espresso Fragrance Oil
  • 1 mL Vanilla Buttercream Fragrance Oil
  • 1/4 teaspoon pink colorant
  • 1/2 teaspoon Vegetable Glycerin
  • 1/2 teaspoon cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon Vegetable Glycerin
  • Small ice cream scoop
  • *There's a chance you might use more than what is listed.

Instructions

  1. In a large bowl, combine the dry ingredients (baking soda, SLSa, cornstarch, and bubble bar hardener. Stir together with a whisk or fork.
  2. Add the vegetable glycerin and castor oil. Mix together using your gloved hands.
  3. Separate into three different bowls.
  4. In a small cup, mix together pink colorant and vegetable glycerin. Set aside.
  5. In a different small cup, mix together cocoa powder and vegetable glycerin. Set aside.
  6. Add pink colorant and strawberry kiwi body safe fragrance to one bowl. Mix using your gloved hands. Test it for the right consistency.
  7. In another bowl, add the cocoa powder colorant and chocolate espresso and vanilla buttercream fragrances. Mix using your hands (with clean gloves). Test for the right consistency.
  8. Pour the three different colors of bubble bar mixture together into a bowl. Lightly mix together.
  9. Use a small ice cream scoop or a cookie scoop to scoop the mixture up. Pack tightly into the scoop. Place on a lined tray/pan.
  10. Allow to harden for at least 24 - 48 hours before using.
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DIY Grain Free Sweet Potato Carrot Dog Treats ~ 4 ingredients!

Poor farm poodle, Bryony. November was such a rough month for her.

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Let me set the stage for you. 

In November:

  1. I sold the the couch and the poodle perch (i.e. the chair that the poodles claimed as their own). 
  2. I ordered a new sectional, but it wasn’t delivered until over a month later. Which meant a month with only one chair to sit in for two people. And the dogs.
  3. Bryony developed a pretty nasty ear infection that wouldn’t clear up.
  4. Which led to three vet visits.
  5. She had a laser pointed at her ears. And they were drained with a needle. 
  6. She was diagnosed with severe food allergies. 
  7. Her food, treats, chewies, etc were taken away.
  8. And a special food (i.e. expensive) from the vet replaced all of that for a little while. 
  9. She hated the new temporary food. 
  10. And last but not least, I raided the toy basket and threw away all of their old, chewed up, no-longer squeaking toys. Believe me, they have plenty of new toys waiting under the Christmas tree. 

But things are starting to look up. Bryony likes the new permanent grain free food. She hasn’t had anymore ear problems. Plus, she’s starting to enjoy car rides again, instead of thinking each one is going to end in a visit to that most dreaded place: The Vet. 

The one difficult thing: She doesn’t like the treats. I’ve bought bag after bag of grain free treats, and none of them have piqued her interest so far. 

So, I decided to make my own. Good news, she loves them! In fact, she was sitting patiently waiting in the kitchen when I took the second batch out. 

Even Sophie got in on the patiently waiting action. 

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Even the weims like them. And they are, shockingly, not treat fans. In fact, they’ve been known to spit treats out. But not these.

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How to make them:
Mix together all of the ingredients.

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You may need more or less eggs depending on the dryness of your ingredients. My puree was left over from juicing carrots for a new soap (see here), and it was very dry. I used 4 eggs in all.

Roll or pat out the dough until it’s a 1/2 inch or less in thickness. This makes quite a lot of dough, so I patted mine flat in about four batches. 

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Cut into shapes and bake in a preheated oven for about 40 to 55 minutes. 

They’ll still be quite soft and chewy (so perfect for older dogs), but if you’d like them to be harder and more brittle, try leaving them in a little longer or even turning the oven off after they’re through baking and leaving them in overnight to dry. 

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Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator. 

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This recipe makes about 30 candy cane shaped treats. 

Grain Free Sweet Potato Carrot Dog Treats

Ingredients

  • 2 cups Coconut Flour
  • 1 1/2 cups Sweet Potato, baked, peeled, and mashed
  • 1/4 cup carrot puree
  • 2 - 4 eggs*
  • *Please note the amount of eggs depends on how dry your other ingredients are (especially the carrot puree). Mine was quiet dry, so I used 4 eggs in all. Use only as many eggs as you need to bind your ingredients together and allow you to be able to roll or pat out the dough.

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350F degrees. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, combing together the ingredients and mix thoroughly.
  3. Place a couple of pieces of parchment paper on a table or counter to keep the dough from making a mess. Roll or pat out the dough until it's about 1/2 inch or less in thickness.
  4. Using a cookie cutter, cut out the cookies. Place on the cookie sheet and bake for about 40 to 55 minutes.
  5. The treats will still be a little soft. If you'd like a harder treat, try baking it a little longer or even turning the oven off after baking and leaving the treats in overnight to dry out.
  6. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator.
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DIY Dollar Tree Color Changing Cone Tree.

I might have a left a couple of trees out of the Christmas Tree Tour. But only because they’re not all decked out with glitz and glitter. And ribbons and bows.

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I also left out the cute little cone trees.

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An illuminated cone from Dollar Tree.

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Gold beads, also from Dollar Tree.

A little hot glue and a couple of burnt fingertips later, and voila!

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Hint: I quickly learned to overlap the beads as much as possible – placing the next row of beads in the gaps between the previous row. 

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Now, to show what they look like lit up. 

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Sophie had to get in on the action, of course.

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