Introduction, Tips & Tricks, Uncategorized

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Crafts/Fun Recipes, Tips & Tricks

Homemade Faux Pewter Pedestal Dish


Homemade Faux Pewter Pedestal Dish ~ Ashley's Homemade Adventures
Homemade Faux Pewter Pedestal Dish ~ Ashley’s Homemade Adventures

I absolutely LOVE the DIY faux pewter pedestal bowl tutorial at Morena’s corner so I had to try making one myself. I looked on Amazon to find similar items to see how much they cost and you can definitely get the look at a fraction of the price with this method. Here are some examples: Mermaid Pewter Bowl  , Decorative Pewter Bowl on Pedestal and Pewter Octopus on Glass Bowl (Just use this method on the figure before attaching it to the glass). Just think of all the possibilities! 

I picked this cute little angel to stand in the middle of mine. The angel, dish, and pedestal were all from Dollar Tree! I love how it turned out, what do you think? 

For the full tutorial please visit Morena’s corner HERE. 

It makes a perfect jewelry holder! Homemade faux pewter pedestal dish ~ Ashley's Homemade Adventures
It makes a perfect jewelry holder! Homemade faux pewter pedestal dish ~ Ashley’s Homemade Adventures

❤ Ashley

Beauty/Body Recipes, Tips & Tricks

Homemade Makeup Primer (and happy Spring!)


Homemade Makeup Primer ~ Ashley's Homemade Adventures

This homemade makeup primer has only 2 ingredients, it couldn’t be more simple and it’s so cheap to make! I have been using it for a few weeks now and I am loving it.

This is going to sound really weird but I was using this anti-chaffing gel as a primer for years. I can’t remember where I saw it but someone had suggested it as a cheaper alternative to this Smashbox primer. It actually works great, although I can’t say if it compares to the Smashbox primer since I never tried that. Still, I wanted to try to make something that has better ingredients and to save even more money.

I have seen other primer recipes that say to mix your foundation with moisturizer but I wanted to try to make something similar to the gel I had been using for a long time. I already had a small bottle of aloe gel I picked up at the dollar store. We live in Florida and I burn easily so it’s a must have! I grabbed that and went to the kitchen to experiment, this is what I ended up with.

Homemade Makeup Primer ~ Ashley's Homemade Adventures
Homemade Makeup Primer ~ Ashley's Homemade Adventures

Homemade Makeup Primer:

1 Tablespoon Aloe Gel

1 Teaspoon Cornstarch

Simply mix together until combined, and store covered so it won’t dry out. Apply to clean skin and let dry before applying foundation.

I wanted to use arrowroot powder but I’m currently out, more people will probably have cornstarch in their kitchen anyways. If you try the arrowroot powder version please let me know how it turns out in the comments. It has always worked perfectly in place of cornstarch in other things I have made. Either way, this costs only pennies to make!

I think this is a great amount to start with to see if you like it. If you want to make a bigger batch then simply increase the aloe gel to 1/4 cup and the arrowroot powder to 1 tablespoon.

I hope you enjoy this and that it will help save you money! If you try it, please let me know how you like it. If you have any ideas on improving it, I would love to hear those also.

Since it’s finally spring, I just wanted to share some pictures with you guys! This is probably my favorite time of year here in NE Florida. The weather is gorgeous! (as I am writing this, it’s in the 70’s with blue skies – perfect!) I already have some peas in the garden and some other baby plants in pots (Tomato, basil, melon, etc.) I absolutely love working in the garden, even if I pay for it later lol. We have lots of wildflowers blooming and it’s just a beautiful time of year with the new growth. I hope these will bring a smile to your face, especially if you are still dealing with winter weather where you live.

❤ Ashley

Pets/Animals, Tips & Tricks

Homemade Hummingbird Nectar Recipe vs. Store Bought


In this post I am going to compare homemade and store bought hummingbird nectar, go over the dangers of red food dye, and share a super easy recipe to make your own hummingbird nectar. Please read all the way to the end, I share some important information and tips.

Homemade Hummingbird Nectar ~ Ashley's Homemade Adventures
Homemade Hummingbird Nectar ~ Ashley’s Homemade Adventures

Our feathered friends will be making their way north very soon! According to Southeastern Avian Research, the Ruby Throated Hummingbirds will be arriving in my area any day now 😀 If you would like to see the migration map you can find it on their Facebook page.

So let’s start with store bought nectar, most of the nectar you see in the stores are red. However, the red dye is not needed! The birds will still come without it, I have seen it myself many times. According to Bird Watchers Digest, Red #40 is a known carcinogenic and mutagenic. Please see their full article on the topic HERE (link will open in new tab) it’s very interesting and good information to know. Store bought nectar will last a little longer in the feeder before you need to replace it and clean the feeder, but you will have to replace the nectar and clean the feeders fairly often anyways. Which leads me to this:

You do NOT want mold to start forming, this could make the birds very sick. You will want to change the nectar out frequently, you may have to do it daily or every other day if you live somewhere very hot (like I do!). If the nectar starts to look cloudy, it definitely needs to be changed. I like to clean my feeders out with an all natural soap and vinegar, it’s important to make sure to rinse very well. When looking for a feeder, I like to make sure that a bottle brush will be able to fit inside for cleaning as some have very narrow openings.

Now for homemade nectar, it’s VERY cheap, and VERY easy! You can make it fresh in small batches as needed if you’d like, or you can make a large batch and store the extra in the fridge for up to a week. This will need to be replaced more often than store bought, as it contains no preservatives. I have seen conflicting advice on whether or not you need to boil the water, but I like to do it just to be safe. You also want to make sure you ONLY use white cane sugar. Please never use honey or any artificial sweeteners, or RAW sugar because it is higher in iron which can be bad for the birds in large amounts. You want plain ‘ole white sugar.

Homemade Hummingbird Nectar:

  • 2 cups water
  • 1/2 cup white sugar

Heat water to boiling, remove from heat, and stir in sugar until dissolved. Cool before pouring into hummingbird feeder. Store extra covered in fridge for up to one week. Replace with fresh nectar often, especially in hot weather.

This picture is from 4 years ago when we lived in an apartment complex in a very busy area of town. I used this same recipe and it attracted multiple hummingbirds to our balcony!

A few other tips:

  • Avoid using insecticides/pesticides in your yard, hummingbirds also eat bugs!
  • If you have many birds battling over the feeder, consider hanging multiple feeders, even in multiple locations around the yard.
  • Plant flowers and fruit trees to help attract hummingbirds.
  • If you see a praying mantis on or near your feeder, please gentle relocate it to another spot. Praying Mantis can catch and eat small hummingbirds.
  • Find beautiful hummingbird feeders here.

Enjoy watching your new feathered friends!

❤ Ashley

Beauty/Body Recipes, Tips & Tricks

Homemade “Vaseline”/ All Natural Non-Petroleum Jelly



Homemade "Vaseline"/ All Natural Non-Petroleum Jelly ~ Ashley's Homemade Adventures

I was inspired to make this because my husband’s hands are so dry and cracked this winter. Coconut oil healed the little cuts, but his skin is still super dry. He doesn’t just need a moisturizer, he needs something to protect his skin as well. What would most people turn to in that situation? Good ole petroleum jelly. Problem is, I don’t have any and haven’t for a long time. When I read about some of the dangers I threw it out. It can easily be contaminated and is a possible carcinogen. Cancer causing slop? No thank you! I don’t want that stuff anywhere near my family ever again. On top of that it does not even moisturize at all and can actually prevent your skin from getting rid of toxins. It is even banned in some other countries! It is amazing how many products I used to use all the time without even thinking about WHAT I was using, and many other people are the same way. Of course now I am always checking labels lol. Anyways I knew there had to be a better way, and luckily I found one! This recipe is for homemade non-petroleum jelly. I was even able to simplify it a little more and make mine totally organic! It could not be any easier 🙂

Ingredients:

  • 1/8 cup (about 1 ounce) beeswax (I used organic beeswax pastilles)
  • 1/2 cup olive oil (I used organic olive oil)

Pour your ingredients into the same jar you are going to be using to store it. Place the jar into a saucepan and add enough water to go about halfway up the jar. Heat on medium until the beeswax melts. Stir, and carefully remove jar from pan – I am sure it goes without saying but just in case, it is HOT. Let cool completely, store covered.

I loved using the same jar to store it in, because there was no clean up afterwards! I always have popsicle sticks on hand because we love to make our own, so I used one of those to stir. Literally the only thing I had to do was dump the water after I was done. You could even let it cool completely and use it to water your plants. It only takes a few minutes for the beeswax to melt so keep an eye on it. I would not recommend boiling the water because the jar might tip and spill. This only fills a small jar so if you want to make a large amount use a bigger jar and double the ingredients.

I actually made two jars of it, and while one was cooling I stirred some essential oils into it to make a natural antiseptic ointment. I used about 10-20 drops each of lavender, lemon and tea tree essential oils. I will probably also use this as a base for homemade vapor rub with some eucalyptus, peppermint and lavender essential oils. Any one of these would make a great gift too!

Homemade Petroleum Jelly & Antiseptic Ointment ~ Ashley's Homemade Adventures

Enjoy!

❤ Ashley

*Edited on 04/04/19 to add: I now use 1/4 cup olive oil and 1/4 cup coconut oil to make this. I find the consistency is better and coconut oil is great for healing

Beauty/Body Recipes, Drinks, Tips & Tricks

Homemade Electrolyte Drink (Homemade Pedialyte)


Homemade Pedialyte Recipe - Ashley's Homemade Adventures

The flu is going around like crazy! We have been dealing with it in our house for several weeks now. My daughter and I are past the worst part now, thank God! There was one day we were both very weak with very high fevers. I was so happy I had made some of this homemade Pedialyte the day before. This is a great way to save yourself some money and a trip to the store. You can also flavor this any way you want! I know there are quite a few recipes out there but this is how we do it:

Homemade Pedialyte:

  • 8 cups water (I prefer to use distilled water, I always have some on hand)
  • 1/4 cup honey (you can also use sugar but we try to stay away from extra sugar and the honey has added benefits)
  • 1 teaspoon SEA salt (contains important minerals that table salt does not, you could also use Himalayan salt which would be even better)
  • Juice of an orange, lemon or lime (optional but has even more benefits, like Vitamin C)
  • Crystal Light or Kool-aid powder for flavor (also optional, we love the lemon Crystal Light with Stevia)

Combine all ingredients in a pitcher, stir until salt and honey have dissolved. Store in refrigerator.

We also love to make this into popsicles, great for when you or your child is burning up from a fever. When my daughter is sick I make sure she takes a sip of this every 10 minutes or so. Best served chilled.

Warning: Honey is not considered safe for children less than a year old.

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Also a quick update on my cousin Joe… (I mentioned in the First Birthday post about how he had a massive heart attack) Miraculously he has no serious brain damage, his heart is working on its own and it looks like he will be okay! He still has to get through heart surgery on Thursday so he is a long way from full recovery, but I am just so happy and thankful he is still with us. If anyone could send some positive thoughts or prayers his way I would really appreciate it 🙂

Cleaning Recipes, Tips & Tricks

Homemade Glass Cleaner


Goodbye commercial glass cleaner! Who wants to pay more when you can make it yourself? Besides being cheaper it is much better to know exactly what you are using in your home. The kind sold in stores contains 2-Butoxyethanol, which can cause adrenal tumors in animals (not good if you own pets!). Moderate exposure in humans can cause irritation of the mucus membranes and heavy exposure can cause more serious side effects like hypotensionmetabolic acidosishemolysis, pulmonary edema and even coma. I don’t know about you but I don’t want to be breathing that in or touching it, and certainly do not want it around my child. Luckily there is a solution and it is super easy!

Homemade Glass Cleaner:

  • Empty Gallon Container (I used a spring water jug)
  • 1/2 cup Ammonia (I used lemon because that is all I have)
  • 16 oz. Rubbing Alcohol (I used 1 and 1/2 cups of the regular kind and 1/2 cup of the mint kind because I ran out of the regular)
  • 1 tsp Dawn Dish Soap (I used the blue Dawn)

First fill your container halfway with water, add the remaining ingredients in the order listed, then fill the rest of the way with water. Give it a gentle shake and you have a gallon of glass cleaner! Pour some into a spray bottle and be amazed at how awesome it is!

I cannot take credit for this recipe, when doing a search for “How to make homemade glass cleaner” This was one of the top results. If this is not quite what you are searching for then check out Crunchy Betty’s Battle of the Homemade Glass Cleaners. I prefer this one because it cleans easier but the others are good if you don’t want to use some of these ingredients.

Here is a little secret to get streak free, fuzz free windows and mirrors…. clean them with NEWSPAPER! It works like a charm 🙂 I have been doing it for years!

Now get to work, those windows and mirrors aren’t going to clean themselves! 😀 Cleaning is a lot more fun when you make your own cleaners!

❤ Ashley

P.S.- You can use this on other hard non-porous surfaces as well. It is great for the outside of the toilet and bathroom counter tops!