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Make Your Own Lavender Essential Oil

Happy Friday, Moppers. We’ve almost sealed the deal on another beautiful week, which means that in just a few short hours we can say bye-bye work, hello weekend!

We don’t know what your weekend plans are, but ours will definitely involve some gardening. We’ve got our vegetable patch in full swing, and now we’re going to turn our attention to planting some flowers, including some gorgeous lavender that smells ah-mazing!

Of course we’ve touted the benefits of lavender essential oil here on the blog before (all essential oils, really), but one thing we’ve never mentioned if how easy it is to make your own. Sure it’s a little time consuming, but the wait is totally worth it.

So with that in mind, this week we thought we’d let you in on the secret to making your own lavender essential oil, which you can then turn around and use in a multitude of ways around your home, including cleaning!

What You’ll Need:

  • Distilled water
  • A crock pot with a lid
  • 3 to 4 cups of freshly chopped lavender
  • Colored glass container
  • Vitamin E (Optional)

Step 1: Get Ready

Place your freshly chopped lavender in your crock pot, and cover with distilled water. The water shouldn’t take up more than 3/4 volume of the crock pot. When you’ve done that, put the lid on upside down so that the concave curve can collect steam to allow it to condense and fall back into the pot.

Step 2: Turn it On

First, you want to turn the crock pot on high to heat all that water, and then when it’s nice and hot turn it down to low and simmer the lavender for 4 hours. The best part? Your home will smell wonderful!

Step 3: Cool Everything

After 4 hours is up, turn off your crock pot and let it cool. When it’s cool to the touch, place the inside of your pot in the fridge. If your crock pot doesn’t come apart, you can put the whole thing in the fridge, or transfer the contents to another container. Either way, you want to somehow get everything in that fridge and keep it there overnight.

Step 4: Get the Oil

The next day, take your crock pot out of the fridge, and take off the lid. You’ll notice that covering everything is a thin film of oil. That’s your essential oil! You’ll want to very carefully lift the oil off the water, but you’ll have to work fast because it will start to melt pretty quickly.

Step 5: Bottle It

Place the oil you’ve peeled off the water into a colored glass container. Put the cap on, and label it. You might notice a little bit of water in there, but it’s easy to get rid of by slowly heating the oil so that the water evaporates. Don’t heat it too much, or else it will lose its potency.

Step 6: Store It

Finally, you can store your lavender essential oil in a cool, dry place away from the sun. We like to drop a little Vitamin E in there to prolong its life, but that’s totally optional. We usually end up using it so fast that we don’t have to worry about it wearing out its shelf life, which is around a month.

That’s all there is to it. This will yield you a few teaspoons of essential oil, which might not seem like a lot for such a long process, but you know what they say? A little goes a long way.

Keep in mind that it’s important to use fresh lavender rather than dried, because fresh will give you more volume of oil, and always—ALWAYS—use distilled water, because tap water can have contaminants in it that will spoil your oil.

That’s all for this week, Moppers. We hope you enjoy your weekend, and we’ll chat with you again soon. Until then, stay safe…and stay clean!

5 Ways to Reuse Your Leftover Wrapping Paper

Good Friday morning, Moppers. Congratulations on successfully making it through another week, and what a week it’s been, right? Christmas is just three days away, so a lot of us have been running around like crazy people buying last minute gifts, making last minute preparations, and of course…doing some last minute cleaning.

Not to mention wrapping all those last minute gifts, too.

When it comes to wrapping presents, though, we tend to put a lot of work into presentation. We want our gifts to look the best so the people receiving them can marvel at our stupendous wrapping skills.

And then tear it apart as they unwrap everything.

You know how it is. Christmas morning, wrapping paper everywhere…ugh, talk about a mess. Seems like such a waste, doesn’t it? All that wrapping paper just lying there, waiting to be thrown out.

Well this year don’t reach for the garbage bags, reach for your scissors instead, because this week we’re going to show you a few things you can do with all that leftover wrapping paper, so it doesn’t go to waste!

1. Confetti

After Christmas comes New Year’s Eve, and what’s a New Year’s Eve party without a little confetti? Instead of throwing that old Christmas wrap in the trash, shred it all up to be used as fun decorations for your New Year’s Eve gatherings. You can throw it in the air at the stroke of midnight, make some table decorations around the champagne. There’s all sorts of fun things you can do, just use your imagination!

2. Packing Material

Of course when the new year is here you’re going to be left with all that shredded wrapping paper and not a thing to do with it…or so you think. Gather it all up and store it away to be used as packing material throughout the year for parcels you have to send. You’ll save money on shipping materials, since it’ll be right at your fingertips.

Bonus Tip: Use whole pieces of leftover wrapping paper to store your delicate ornaments in for next year. Wrap them up tight, and the paper will offer protection so nothing gets broke.

3. Craft Paper

Do you have kids? Then you know how much they love to color, right? What’s not so fun is when they color the walls. Here’s a hot tip for you: tape some of that leftover wrapping paper to their bedroom wall with the blank, white bottom facing out. That way your kids will have a neat place to display their artistic talents, and you won’t be left with a messy wall to clean.

4. Shelf/Drawer Liner

Looking to spruce up your home? Try taking some of your leftover wrapping paper and using it to line the insides of your drawers, or your shelves. Not all wrapping paper is holiday specific, so if you have some that looks too gorgeous to toss in the trash, recycle it into some home decorations.

5. Save the Tube

It’s fun to make leftover wrapping paper into something artistic and useful, but what about that leftover tube that all the paper was wrapped around? Instead of chucking it in the trash, use it as a holder for some of your other wrapping paper so it doesn’t uncurl. You can store it easier for next year, and you don’t have to worry about using tape and having the paper rip later. Not only that, but you can cut the tube, and use it as a place to store some of your tapered holiday candles, too. Wrap them in tissue, put them in the tube, and pack it all away for next year. Neat, right?

Sure, all that wrapping paper on Christmas morning might look like a big ol’ mess to clean, but by transforming it into something for the home, it will look less like a mess, and more like an invitation to create. Plus, you’ll be doing the environment a favor by recycling, rather than adding to the mountains of trash to be disposed of.

And we’re all for making the environment a better place.

That’s all for today, Moppers. We hope you and yours have a very happy holiday, and we’ll chat with you again next week. Until then, stay safe…and stay clean!

How to Make Your Own Essential Oil Diffuser

Good Monday morning, Moppers. We hope you all had a fabulous weekend and managed to do all the things you wanted to do. We kept pretty busy on our end, shopping, baking, and of course there was a little R&R time in there with a glass of wine or two.

All-in-all it was a pretty good weekend, except for the part where our essential oil diffuser decided to go on the fritz.

Yeah, that was a bummer.

But being the crafty, creative people we are, we decided to ditch the store bought one in favor of making our own diffuser this time around, and so far the results have been pretty darn good. It took literally no time at all to make, and now we’re back to smelling the wonderful aroma of essential oils that we love so much.

Therefore today we’d like to show you all how to make your own essential oil diffuser using three different recipes, so that this holiday season you can have your home smelling fantastic on a budget.

1. Carrier Oil & Essential Oil

For this first recipe you want to use a ratio of 70% carrier oil to 30% essential oil. Simply add your carrier oil (we like using either sweet almond oil, or safflower oil) to a glass jar or ceramic container, and then add your essential oils. You can mix them up for a combo scent, or you can just add one, like lavender, or peppermint. Either way, when you’ve done that, swirl it all around to combine.

2. Carrier Oil, Alcohol & Essential Oil

Like above, you want to use a 70%-30% ratio between your carrier oil, and essential oil. So add those to your glass or ceramic container, only this time you’re going to add 2-3 tablespoons of vodka. Why? Because alcohol evaporates fast, which means it’s going to work quicker to get your room smelling nice with whatever essential oils you decide to use.

3. Water, Alcohol & Essential Oil

If you don’t have any carrier oil on hand, and can’t be bothered to leave your home to get some, you can use water instead. Simply pour 1/4 cup of hot tap water into your glass jar or ceramic container, followed by 1/4 cup of vodka, or rubbing alcohol. Then add 25 drops of your chosen essential oil, and swirl everything around to combine.

Now What?

Either one of the recipes above will work fine, though we usually just stick with number 3 because everyone always has water on hand, right?

From there you want to grab some dried twigs from outside (peel the bark off), or some bamboo skewers (cut the pointed ends off). Take those, and drop as many twigs or skewers as you can into the opening of your glass or ceramic container. We go with anywhere between six and ten, depending on how big the opening is, but if you can’t get that many to fit, don’t worry about it.

Let the end of the twigs or skewers soak in the oils for a few hours, allowing everything to be drawn up through them so that they emit that essential oil aroma you’ve been craving. When you notice the scent beginning to dwindle, simply take them out and flip them around. You can also top up the mixture with more essential oil if you notice that you’re not getting as much scent after a few days, but for the most part this homemade essential oil diffuser will last you quite a long time. The only reason to ditch the twigs or skewers would be if you want to replace them with a different scent.

We told you it was easy, right? Of course the scent given off from your DIY essential oil diffuser probably won’t be as powerful as the aromas given off by those store bought ultrasonic ones, but the upside is that you won’t have to replace the oil mixture as often, and you won’t have to clean it out as often either, save for when you want to replace the scent. Depending on the size of your room though, you might be surprised by how much scent these homemade ones can release. We definitely were.

That’s all for today, Moppers. Enjoy the start of a brand new week, and we’ll chat with you again on Wednesday. Until then, stay safe…and stay clean!

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