Homemade Citrus Cleaner Recipe

All you need is:

Fresh citrus peel (orange or lemon)

White vinegar

Glass jar with lid

Place peels in jar with vinegar. Tighten the lid and place in a dark place for two weeks.

Remove peels from jar, pour into a spray bottle. This is a multi purpose spray. You can add 1/2 c water to every quart if you like. I like this especially on glass or mirrors. I would refrain from using this on stone.

I’m so excited to use my Meyer lemon peels for this.

Enjoy!

Xo,

Missy

Homemade pierogis

Pierogis are so easy to make!

Mashed potatoes

4-5 regular sized potatoes

3oz of cream cheese

3 tbsp butter

Onion powder

Garlic powder

Salt & pepper

(Seasonings to taste)

Dough

2 cups all purpose flour

1/3 cup sour cream

1 egg

Tsp salt

2/3c water

Combine salt and flour in a large bowl. Make a well and add sour cream and egg. Add water. Stir egg and sour cream and work out towards the bowl. Turn out onto a floured surface and knead 50 times (yes 50)

Place bowl on top of ball of dough and let sit 10 minutes.

Roll out on a floured surface so the dough is thin, but not see through thin. Use a cup to cut circles from the dough.

Spoon mashed potatoes into the circle and pinch off. Boil for 4 minutes or until they start to float! Enjoy!

Reusable Kitchen Scraps

I can’t even imagine the amount of waste I have done in my lifetime. How often do you cut vegetables and throw out the scraps? If you aren’t composting, or feeding animals the scraps the amount of waste is incredible.

If you follow this blog, you’ll know I have been getting pretty stir crazy the last few months. Gardening has really turned into a passion of mine. Turning it off this winter has been very hard for me. I like to keep busy. I like accomplishing little projects.

Watching my food pantry dwindle has been depressing. I can hear my Mom saying, “that’s what it’s there for, enjoy it”

Perhaps next year I won’t see my pantry as such a shrine, or work a work of art as I did in my first year. Currently, I love to look at it and not let anyone touch. We eat from it almost daily, and with each lid that pops open, comes excitement and gratitude! Nothing you get from paying 99cents for the same items in an aluminum can. Inside every jar is the sweet taste of summertime. Still as fresh as when we put it inside.

I am so proud of all the hard work on those shelves. We really have enjoyed the delicious fruits of our labors! Just last night we enjoyed pears that were so delicious it felt like dessert.

So what about now? If you are a gardener like me, you may be asking yourself this during these winter months. Maybe you aren’t a gardener though, and you have zero clue about this standstill feeling. Months of hard work, prepping seeds, transferring them, then nurturing them until they are ready. Once they are ready it’s time to prepare them to enjoy, or prepare them to be stored. From seed to table, it’s a lot of work.

All of this might sound overwhelming for a beginner. People are always asking me little tips to get started, etc.

There are three things people are always worried about. First, the costs of everything make people nervous (I am a very frugal gardener) secondly, the amount of time it entails. Lastly, failing. No one wants to invest any of the above to possibly fail.

Here is a small challenge, that will cost you little to nothing (as far as going out of your way and purchasing) and will not take much of your time. Possibly MINUTES per week at most.

The next time you buy lettuce, cabbage, green onions, lettuce, celery, romaine etc. keep it! Put it in water and watch it regrow.

I currently have some romaine (I’m really mad at myself for throwing away 4 stems yesterday) sitting in water on my counter. I really hope it starts sprouting in the next few weeks. After some time, I will plant it in my window sill inside. I think I have some celery in my fridge too that I plan to “regrow” as well.

What I am most excited about is my green onion! All you have to do is place it in some water, and keep pruning the roots and trimming the tops. Fresh green onion on hand 24/7. No waiting for it to grow. Place in water immediately upon buying, and start enjoying. Every few days change the water and keep it near a window. This investment cost me 89 cents!

I plan on doing the same with my herbs I have started. I will cut them and let them grow and enjoy them all year.

You can also do this with ginger and garlic. Inside!

This weekend I am also planting arugula, mustard greens, and lettuces. I have ordered “cut and come again” seeds, so I will be enjoying self replenishing salads for months to come!

These are typically very good to plant in colder temps. I have gone back and forth on planting these inside or planting them outside.

In a few months I will be starting my seeds, so I really need the space inside.

My idea is to buy a large bag of soil, pop holes on one side (to act as a drainage system) flip the bag over, cut out the top .. sprinkle the seeds and cover with a large Rubbermaid plastic clear bin. I will place the soil bag on top of the lid of the storage container so the base of it can click right in, keeping it sturdy (like a green house)

If this is hard for you to visualize, no worries. I will be sure to post my method with lots of pictures next week. The entire project should cost me under $15 + cost of seeds.

If you would like to do it, you can order the “cut and come again” seeds below. There are a thousand seeds per order, just $5.99 with free shipping.

Order seeds here!

It is amazing to see how far I have come with gardening in the last year. The amount of produce I had last summer was insane. I plan on my garden being even larger this summer. Self sufficiency is such a powerful feeling. You can attain this with as little or with as much money as you would like to invest into it. You can do baby steps towards this and start small.

On top of the kitchen herbs, lettuces, aloes and succulents I currently have, I will also have an indoor lemon tree, orange tree and lime tree. Once these are established they will bear fruit all year.

Outside I am still planning. I will be planting my peach, apple and pear trees this spring. I have read that they may produce in the first year. My fingers are crossed that my blueberry, raspberry and blackberry bushes come back this spring. I pray about this often! I love fresh berries to eat, freeze and make into jellies and jams!

I’m also creating a large space for strawberries (I wish I would have done it last year, but time got away from me) that I might get some fruit from, but definitely will in 2020. Most berries come back every year, but rarely bare fruit the year they are planted.

I will also plant the vegetables and fruit I planted last year and have a few additions I will talk more about in a later post.

I hope to have enough for all winter to enjoy, and possibly to sell extra produce and canned items this year.

So many people asked, but my number one priority was to produce enough for my family to enjoy. It was my first year and I wanted to focus on having enough to last until the season started again.

Everything I make I am approached by people who want to buy. I don’t plan on making this a business, but have considered a “vacation fund” for me and the kids to use the money for enjoyment, since we all work so hard at this.

The Littles put in so much time picking, watering and helping. Emma also helps when I am running out the door and need watering or picking done.

I really haven’t really decided how I will do this. I might offer it to local people initially (produce, canned items, bread and other baked items) and offer non food items to ship (candles, soaps, oil blends, bath bombs, tub teas and salves)

I would probably make a certain amount and once they are sold, they will be gone.

I still have a career that I am passionate about and I am raising four children by myself, so time is precious to me and this wouldn’t be high on the priority list. (Sorry!)

I post and share what I am doing mostly to inspire you. You can do all of these things yourself. Living life in a more slowed down pace is very fulfilling. You know when you sit down and eat something and it tastes so good? Imagine in that same bite also being able to taste accomplishment, self sufficiency and knowing exactly from seed to harvest what that food accomplished? Mmmm. delicious! Most of us are so disconnected from our food and where it comes from.

So jump in, learn as you go. You’ll mess up at some things but succeed in others. You only really fail if you don’t try. So much to gain in gardening. It is my therapy. Thanks for reading.

Xo,

Missy

Gardening indoors

January means it’s herb month! I have started planting herbs that will stay indoors. So far, I have basil planted. I also have rosemary, cilantro, thyme, parsley, oregano, mint and a few others.

My parents have green onion that I am very jealous of, so I will also be adding some green onion to grow and have on hand.

If you are interested in getting started with me, you might want to pick up some of these organic wheat pellets. They are like little dirt pods that expand in water. I purchased mine on amazon and they take 2 days to ship.

Https://amzn.to/2LJkDhz

These are pretty inexpensive and very convenient to have on hand.

https://amzn.to/2R1WnwR

I recommend these herbs. They are high quality and made in the USA. Almost all of my seeds come from this company.

This winter I have decided to come up with ways to continue harvesting produce. I have been researching constantly and have decided on getting some lemon, lime, fig and clementine trees for my home. We will be able to enjoy fruit all year this way. I am planning on buying these trees from amazon if you are also interested.

https://amzn.to/2VqEUg0

I found this tree much cheaper, $30. I ordered it! It comes in two weeks!

Https://amzn.to/2RnHch1

I have also finally transferred my succulents!

I need to order some more aloe. The goal for me is to have plants that have purpose, whether it’s edible or medicinal.

My next post will be about turning kitchen scraps into producing plants. So many things we throw away can actually be regrown. This is an awesome project for kids to get involved in. Stay posted, I’m hoping to have some more information this evening when I get a chance.

Easy & fast soap !

Many of you have asked me about my soap. I am currently using soap bases. They melt down and you pour them into molds.

Here are some links of items I use to make mine! I currently have almost 30 bars!

I just made more. Lavender and lavender rose.

 

 

Here’s what you need to get started!!

(These are all mostly 2 day free shipping (prime members) I have bought from all of these companies and have had great experiences. These are also the CHEAPEST prices on these products. I’ve done the research for you!)

First, you need a soap base.

https://amzn.to/2BGbMbS

This one will give you about 20 bars of soap.

I use these molds

https://amzn.to/2Sm6IR0

I melt down the soap in my microwave (you can use a double boiler) and then I scent the soap with essential oils. Here are my favorites

https://amzn.to/2Rk7yQO

I also like to use loose petals

https://amzn.to/2CyWcjU

I put the petals in the mold first. Next, I melt down the base in a glass jar. I add 10 drops of fragrance (minimum) per bar. Once you stir, see if the smell is fragrant enough. Then you can pour into your mold. After the soap is inside the mold, you can spray rubbing alcohol to the tops to get out any air bubbles. I let them sit for a minimum 30 minutes and once they are completely cooled, I pop them out and enjoy them!

These do not need any proofing. This is a fun easy activity for adults and kids to do together! If I started from scratch I would have to worry about lye (dangerous) and months of proofing.

No need with this! Enjoy!

Xo,

Missy

Old fashioned Christmas

My family embraces every holiday and every season. We live it all up until we can hardly stand it any longer.

This week we have drove around neighborhoods looking at Christmas lights and tonight we drove 30 minutes to Christmas in The Park!

Before leaving, I filled my vintage thermos with hot chocolate for the trip. We ate dinner in the car and enjoyed cookies while looking at all the lights. We made sure to listen to Christmas music too!

The last drive in we went to we did the same thing. We cozied together and drank got chocolate from our thermos, enjoyed homemade treats and ate popcorn.

The kids had such a wonderful time.

I am all about making memories with my children. I hope someday they look back on their childhood and think, “My mom did everything with me and took me everywhere”

Spending quality time with my family is where I always like to be. I have a million kids it feels like! Something I have always dreamed of. I love packing for all of them, shopping for each of them for Christmas and just enjoy being with them.

One of my favorite things is enjoying all over again things I liked as a kid.

I always feel sad when I hear people say how stressful Christmas is for them. It really doesn’t have to be. Everything we have done leading up to Christmas this year has been very inexpensive or free.

Months ago I found canvas at Dollar Tree. My kids love to paint so we did some Christmas painting yesterday!

We’ve also watched so many Christmas movies: Santa Clause, Home Alone, Rudolf, Frosty and many others!

This week we will be seeing Santa (also free) and Cookie decorating.

If you are feeling discouraged this year, this is your reminder about what Christmas is. Christmas is about Jesus.. and family. Let go of the stress. Stop running in the rat race. Christmas is so much more than presents. As I always say, I enjoy others PRESENCE… over their PRESENTS.

6 more days.

Xo, Missy

2019 Top Christmas Gifts for her $30ish and Under

1. Amazon Echo

We have had ours for about a week now and my kids and I LOVE IT! You can ask Alexa ANYTHING! She will play your favorite music, recorder amazon items, tell you when your team is playing, the weather, you ask the question and she will give you the answer! This is the perfect gift for someone hard to buy for. I am constantly playing classical music, holiday music when my kids aren’t trying to take over it with their music. For less than $30, this item is a must have for 2019!

Buy it now for $29! Normally $59!

https://amzn.to/2R4qOSd

2. Makeup brushes

I am a professional cosmetologist and like using professional brushes when applying makeup. I have bought these for my personal use and they are JUST AS GOOD! They ship very quickly. You can not beat the price of these and the quality is amazing! $17 for the entire set. Such a must have!

3. Spiral hair ties

These are a game-changer. They do not hurt or damage your hair. They not only look adorable, but can hold heavy thick hair or fine light hair. I never lose these. They last me forever and I think they are so cute on my wrist vs the ugly normal ones. They also don’t cut off my circulation!

At $8 for 5 of these.. you need them!

https://amzn.to/2rH8n7W

4. Succulents

Everyone needs a plant. However, not everyone has a green thumb! Succulents make awesome gifts because they are inexpensive, almost impossible to kill and they are all the rage! I have ordered mine off amazon and I have had great success! I recently bought these. 5 for $13 AND free shipping if you have Prime.

https://amzn.to/2Gv22qw

5. Essential oils

I have absolutely fell in love with this brand of oils! I use them I diffusers, candle making and my soap making. They are affordable and high quality. They have so many different sets and you can also buy them individually. Right now the sets are $16.95, almost half off!!

https://amzn.to/2EDWpEy

For $15.99 pair these oils with this diffuser! This diffuser has a 4.5 star rating with more than 14,000 reviews! It has different settings to change the color depending on your mood! $30 for both items makes an awesome gift!!

https://amzn.to/2R6AD1X

6. Happy Planner

With the new year fastly approaching, I think the gift of a planner is such a unique gift idea. This planner kit has everything to get your loved one started! Lots of stickers, magnets etc. this specific planner can start on any month desired. I am currently using this planner and love it. You can also get inserts for recipes, savings, budgeting, house maintenance, wedding planning and also weight loss! Right now these are only $28!

https://amzn.to/2ED29OU

7. Electric Water Kettle

I received one of these last Christmas and I have used it every day since. I love tea, oatmeal, Mrs grass soups etc and am constantly using this. Right now it’s $7 off plus there is a 5% coupon! $33 before the coupon! I love this print too!!

https://amzn.to/2QETEZX

These little diffusers are so cute for loose tea!! How cute are these kittens that hang inside your tea cup?! You can also put ground coffee in it! $12.99

https://amzn.to/2QCtze6

8. Jewelry organizer

Most women wear jewelry. Instead of buying more jewelry, I think a great gift is a way to organize it better! I have been making better organization of my collection! I actually think I am going to order this! It comes in a few different finishes and as you can see, is capable of holding a lot of jewelry! This would be cute in a private bathroom, bedroom or closet. It’s normally $50, but on sale for under $35!

https://amzn.to/2UY6DEA

9. Philosophy kit

This is my current favorite skincare kit! It’s less than $25 right now and that is an awesome deal!

https://amzn.to/2SbCaRG

10. Pioneer Woman Crockpot

This is my favorite crockpot of all time! I absolutely love it! Anything pioneer woman, YES PLEASE! Under $36

https://amzn.to/2LoPfEI

11. The Barbara Sherpa

If you want a great quality Sherpa sweater, you need one from County Road Rebel! This company is very dear to me. This super soft and plush sweater is normally almost $40 but is on sale for $32!! AND FREE SHIPPING!

https://countyroadrebel.com/collections/sale/products/the-barbara