DIY Just Because card: Hello with Heart-Petaled Flower

JB hello flower 3

Materials: 

  • Recollections kraft card and envelope (value pack) [Michaels]
  • Recollections Basic Bold 12″ x 12″ paper pad [Michaels]
  • Recollections 1 7/16″ heart punch (blue one) [Michaels]
  • yellow printer paper
  • green Sharpie
  • MS Word WordArt, printer, green ink
  • glue stick
  • pencil

OrganizationLove Pro Tips:

  • I glued down all of the hearts first, before gluing on the yellow circle
  • I chose purple patterns, but the paper pad has all kinds of colors – you could also choose black and white, rainbow, or any other color scheme
  • I draw on the stem, but I do it in pencil first and then trace over with green Sharpie

Caption Ideas:

  • Because there are already words on the front of the card, outer captions are not necessary
  • Inside notes:
    • Just saying hi
    • Have a great day
    • Love you

Inspiration

  • This card was inspired by one I found on pinterest, the blog post is here:

http://kath-allthatglitter.blogspot.com/2011/05/fruit-scoop.html

Inspired? 

  • If my post inspires you, and you blog about it, I ask that you credit me! Also, I’d love to see it!

Want it?

  • This card is available for purchase on my etsy store:

https://www.etsy.com/listing/255012736/hello-flower-card

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An Organized Cord, Electronic, and Battery Drawer

Before buying our house, we never had enough drawer space to have a junk drawer. We did have a lot of cords and electronic accessories so we had a “cord and battery drawer” in the bottom of a side table. We still have it, and today we went through it all. We found so many cords that we didn’t know what they went to, plus a bunch of cords that we did know where they belonged – with something we no longer owned! This is the gallon bag I am bringing to Best Buy to recycle these cords:

An Organized Cord, Electronic, and Battery Drawer at OrganizationLove.wordpress.com

Some things that went in this bag included:

  • Old cell phone/camera chargers (The cell phones are no longer in our possession)
  • Phone cords (we only use ours for the internet, and we don’t need extra)
  • Computer charger that was broken
  • Cords that we didn’t know what they belonged with

We also threw away a lot, such as:

  • Old memory cards we’ll never be able to use again
  • Multiple camera straps
  • Dead batteries
  • Broken earbuds

We kept chargers and adapters we use.

I labeled anything that wasn’t already with bread ties and Sharpie.

An Organized Cord, Electronic, and Battery Drawer at OrganizationLove.wordpress.com

Also, used twist ties to contain the cords. (Or, once, a toilet paper tube for a longer cord.)

An Organized Cord, Electronic, and Battery Drawer at OrganizationLove.wordpress.com

Used battery containers from the Container Store (found here) to contain batteries of all sizes. I don’t have any C batteries right now and I used the C-sized container to keep extra size AAs.

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Some things I love to have that I keep in this drawer also:

  • A battery checker

An Organized Cord, Electronic, and Battery Drawer at OrganizationLove.wordpress.com

  • A reusable battery charger

An Organized Cord, Electronic, and Battery Drawer at OrganizationLove.wordpress.com

This is the drawer now. It includes

  • chargers
  • adapters
  • battery checkers
  • battery charging device
  • batteries
  • mini flashlight
  • less-used earbuds
  • mini tripod for camera
  • microphone
  • old disposable camera that I’ll use up and find some place to develop
  • old iPod Nano that I only use on long car rides (and the adapter to go with it)
  • camera when I’m not using it – then I don’t lose it so much

An Organized Cord, Electronic, and Battery Drawer at OrganizationLove.wordpress.com

Of course, I have other chargers and electronic accessories that I do not keep in this drawer – such as both our cell phone chargers (used nightly), my laptop charger (used regularly), bigger flashlights, etc.

Do you have a place to store your cords? Have you ever gone through it?

How to Clean and Care for Your Menstrual Cup

This is part 2/2 in my series on the menstrual cup. Part 1, 9 Reasons Why I Chose a Menstrual Cup, can be found here.

The Diva Cup website really has a great explanation of how to insert the Diva Cup, so rather than restating everything they said, here’s the link: http://divacup.com/how-it-works/how-it-works/. For the record, I use fold option 2, the “push down” method, as pictured:

How To Clean and Care for Your Menstrual Cup

Image courtesy of http://www.divacup.com

Now. What I really wanted to talk about was how to clean and care for your menstrual cup — hence the title of this blog post!

  • While you are menstruating, you need a quicker clean between dumping your cup out and reinserting it. Divacup.com advertises a Diva Wash, but to be honest, I haven’t felt the need for that. I use a non-fragrant soap (Ivory bar soap) and warm water to wash out my Diva Cup.
  • In between cycles, I boil my cup in a small pot that I use ONLY for this purpose! (In fact, it stays in the bathroom when not in use.) Boil for at least 10 minutes… make sure not to boil all the water away or the cup will burn.
  • If at any time there is blood in the little holes around the rim of the cup, you have to clean that out, because it is the little holes that create the suction and hold it in place. To do this: Fill the cup with water, hold in one hand, cover the large opening with other hand, turn upside down, and push down on opening. The pressure pushes water through the holes and cleans them out. Just be careful where the water squirts (I hold it down in the sink.) Do not use toothpicks or any other way to clean the holes, as those can damage the cup.

Lastly, storage of your menstrual cup. The Diva Cup comes with a cotton bag. Be sure not to store your cup in a plastic bag. It’s important because the cotton is breathable.

Have you made the switch to a menstrual cup yet? Let me know!

The opinions stated in this blog post are mine alone. Facts and photo were obtained from http://www.divacup.com.

9 Reasons Why I Chose a Menstrual Cup

If you menstruate, or know someone who does, this post is for you. I used to wear tampons and pads during my time of the month, until 3 years ago when a friend introduced me to the idea that something better was out there. In this two part series, I am going to write first on why I chose a menstrual cup, and in part 2 (HERE), I will write about how to use and care for your menstrual cup (should you choose to accept it.) First, a quick explanation: a menstrual cup is a silicone cup that you fold and insert into your vagina when you are menstruating. The cup holds the blood until you remove it, dump the contents into the toilet, wash out, and reinsert. That really is the gist of it!

Why I prefer a menstrual cup – specifically, the DivaCup.

  1. You can wear the DivaCup for up to 12 hours. The cup holds 1 oz of menstrual blood, and most women only have about 1-2 oz PER CYCLE! No worries about it not being big enough.
  2. Unlike with tampons, there is no risk for toxic shock syndrome (TSS) with the cup. Therefore:
  3. …You can wear the cup overnight.
  4. It is safe enough to wear when you think you might start your period but haven’t yet.
  5. Cost-effective. One of the main things that drew me away from tampons in the first place: The DivaCup (my cup of choice!) costs about $30 (It is $29.99 + S/H on drugstore.com) and lasts a whole year.
  6. Tampons (and pads for that matter) contain tons of chemicals to make them absorbent. Who wants chemicals up there?
  7. Environmentally friendlier, as you are not throwing away a ton of paper, cotton, etc.
  8. You can track your periods easily with the DivaCup, should you ever need to tell your doctor how much blood you put out monthly. There are measuring lines on the outside.
  9. In my experience, periods became shorter and lighter with the use of the DivaCup. (Not an FDA approved and evaluated statement, although other women have said the same thing.)

A question I received when sharing with family members about the Diva Cup was a great one – does it have to be fitted by doctor? Nope, this is a cup made of silicone that forms to your body – you can even buy it on the internet. There are 2 sizes, based on your age and whether you have given birth or not. The only things that I think people might not like about the cup is the “ick” factor, public restroom worries, and time constraints. To debunk:

  • It can be icky to dump the cup in the toilet (TIP: hold close to the bowl) (blood can be thick and I use toilet paper to clean it out fully) and wash out the cup. There’s no denying that. But, if you ask me, it’s really not that bad. I don’t think it’s much worse than the tampon stuff.
  • Public restrooms where there are stalls can be complicated. I read you can bring a bottle of water in to wash out the cup into the toilet if needed. However, given the 12 hours you can keep it in, I have literally never run into this issue.
  • Time constraints are the only thing that get to me. Some nights I wear just a pad to bed because I know I’ll be in such a rush the next morning that I won’t have time to remove, wash out, and reinsert the cup. Instead I wake up and put my clean cup in and remove the pad. I can’t debunk this. It takes less time to rip off a pad than to clean out your cup.

Would you use the DivaCup? What would be your reasoning for making the switch?

The opinions stated in this blog post are mine alone. Facts and photo were obtained from http://www.divacup.com.

Uses for the Magic Eraser (and product review)

Uses for the Magic Eraser (and product review)

 

 

 

DSCN1303

Before today, I had never used a Magic Eraser. I bought a 2-pack not too long ago and still hadn’t used them. I wasn’t sure how – was there a trick to it? What if it didn’t work? Tonight, I decided to give one a whirl…

I read a bunch of blog articles and found lots of uses for the Magic Eraser. Here are the ones I tried tonight that I was super pleased with.

Dry erase board: Lots of smears on the one on my fridge. Came out much shinier and nicer, completely clean! (Of all the experiments, I was most pleased with this.)dryerase

Keyboard. Grime between the keys and on them. Gross. Came out really well. I might go over it again, in fact.  

keyboard new

 

 

The refrigerator door. Not too bad, so it’s hard to tell, but near the handle there was some food grime. fridge

 

Stovetop. This mess just happened tonight. I usually use a rag and baking soda with water like in this post, but I thought I’d give the Magic Eraser a try… I had to wipe remaining smeared grease up with a rag after, though. stovetop

Toaster. The outside was really dusty, including the metal in the center, the little crevasses on the sides, and around the knob.toaster

Range head. It was SUPER dusty, had never been wiped off since we moved in. I’m not used to it since I’ve not had a range head in my adult life. Hard to tell, but it was perfect and shiny afterwards.rangehead

Wall. From moving furniture though this part of the hallway, there were some scuffs. In the first picture it looks like there’s a wet spot… there is: I wiped some down before snapping the first picture.

wall2

Bottom of wall, more scuffing. I think I rubbed to much here – although the scuffing lifted, I think I lifted some of the white paint, too! (Where you see blue in the bottom picture.) Not good!wall3

I’m pleased with the Magic Eraser, but I won’t be so rough on the walls next time. Also, I would like to point out that it started falling apart pretty quickly (possibly related to how hard I scrubbed?) 

This is a new one compared to the one I used tonight. And I had the “extra power” type, too!DSCN1302

I would not use it on grease again, even though it worked fine, because it got SO dirty and would not rinse out completely. I am fine with a rag and baking soda for those situations!

Do you use a Magic Eraser? Where else should I try it? 

*This post was not sponsored or endorsed by Mr. Clean or anyone else. The opinions shared are the author’s alone.*

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Recipe: Spinach smoothie

I have updated this post here.

I bought some spinach at the farmer’s market because I had the idea in my brain that I wanted to make some spinach smoothies. For a few reasons:

  • I am experimenting with cutting out added sugar from my diet.
  • I LOVE the thickness of yogurt and ice cream etc, sometimes the thickness is what I actually crave rather than the flavor, so I wanted to try smoothies.
  • Spinach is a great source of vitamins (http://www.mamanatural.com/top-9-leafy-greens/ spinach ranked #4) so I thought I’d try the green smoothie route, rather than all fruit, because fruit has more sugar than spinach. Even though it’s not added or refined sugar, might as well give it a try!

These were my ingredients (listed below picture):

spinach smoothie

1 frozen banana
1/2 cup vanilla Greek yogurt
2 cups small leaf spinach (pictured: 4 cups)
1 cup unsweetened almond milk
1 TBSP peanut butter

I freeze the banana already cut up so it’s easier for me. The recipe I was using called for 4 cups of spinach, so that’s what I’d portioned out at first, but I decided to try just 2 because of this chart I found on pinteresthttp://media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/originals/ee/53/3f/ee533f99ff62af50d2cba06acf6202c1.jpg

I combined everything with spinach on top. Our blender is pretty old and weak, but to my surprise, it blended beautifully! I had to stop once to scrape some yogurt off the side before blending one final time. LOVELY!

This is how much it made:

spinach smoothie

spinach smoothie

Trying it out. The straw went away after this picture. It was a little thick for a straw, but not impossible.

spinach smoothie

spinach smoothie

Delicious! All gone! I didn’t taste the spinach at all. I tasted the banana and peanut butter more than anything, which I loved. It made 1 serving.

I won’t take the credit for creating this smoothie. Though I’m sure it’s pretty common, my inspiration was from this site. (Like I said, I changed it slightly.)

If you like my blog, check out my facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/OrganizationLove

Natural Microwave Cleaner: Vinegar

I clean my microwave about every week, and it never gets too dirty as we don’t use it that often. I usually wipe it out with vinegar sprayed onto a rag… but I wanted to write a post about a trick I learned on Pinterest that I’ve used a few times when I need a deeper clean.

My microwave wasn’t all that dirty to start out:

DSCN0668

I used the following Pinterest trick:

Put half water, half vinegar in a microwave-safe bowl. (Pinterest says 1 cup of each… I use less. The vinegar smell is awful and lingering if you use too much.) Once I microwaved straight vinegar because I forgot and I had to leave the room because of the smell.

Microwave on high for 1-3 minutes, depending on how stuck on the food is. Some Pinners say 10 minutes. I have not found that to be necessary. 

The steam from the vinegar mixture loosens the food/grime on the walls and ceiling of the inside of the microwave.

DSCN0673

Remove the bowl with oven mitts. Dip a rag in the (VERY HOT!) solution and wipe down walls and ceiling.

DSCN0674

It’s a good idea to remove the microwave plate to wipe it down, or wash with dish soap if you need to. 

I always leave the microwave door open a little while to air it out. I also wipe down the outside of the microwave to disinfect a bit.

VERDICT: This Pinterest trick works nicely. I like that it uses vinegar, which is safe to ingest. I also like how easy it is. I haven’t had the opportunity to use this method on an extra-dirty microwave in a while, but if I remember right, it works well for those too with a few extra minutes of microwaving. If you find yourself needing to scrub too hard, microwave the vinegar/water mixture a little longer. 

Comment if you try it!