Tuesday, 26 April 2011

Wordless Wednesday - A visiting Moose @ Wall Flower Studio


DIY - Create Handmade Talc Free Powder!

Did you know that Talc is a carcinogen? It’s true…Talc is toxic Talc is a naturally occurring mineral which is carcinogenic when inhaled. In addition, women who regularly use talc in the genital area are at increased risk for ovarian cancer. Airborne talc in body powders and antiperspirant sprays can irritate the lungs. Talcum powder is reported to cause coughing, vomiting, and even pneumonia. Many pediatricians now tell parents to avoid using talc on babies as it can cause respiratory distress.
Talc is found in blushes, face powders, eye shadows, foundation and skin fresheners. Used near the eyes, it can irritate sensitive mucous membranes.Guide to less toxic products. Excellent information:
http://www.preventcancer.com/consumers/general/dirty_dozen.htm
Create your own silky, talc-free body & foot powder! No preservatives, dyes, oils, or any other nasty stuff. Any essential oil fragrance can be used. I love the way it leaves my skin feeling naturally smooth. Apply it after a bath, on a hot day, or add some to work boots to ease the feet.
Recipe:  2 oz Arrowroot powder

2 oz Cornstarch
2 oz Rice powder
1 oz Kaolin clay
6 drops of essential oil (You're choice! I like Lavender, and Sandalwood too!)

*Mix all of the dry ingredients together, then add your choice of essential oil to the mixture.
*Mix thoroughly to disperse the oil evenly. I use the blender!
*Make sure to break up lumps that may occur when the essential oils are added.
*Place the powder into a nice container, or package it up pretty for gift-giving. If you do, make sure to include one of those puffs for easy application. Enjoy!

Monday, 25 April 2011

Spring Flowering Bulbs Blooming Now : )







Well, I managed to leave the computer for a wee while and get outside in the Spring sunshine. The birds were singing, the snow's almost gone, and it was a beautiful day.

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Snapped a few photos in the yard. I love crocus. They're so dainty! And the daffs are almost ready to pop open. : )

Gotta love Spring..... Happy Gardening!

DIY - Lavender Room Spray - All Natural and Very Easy to Make!

Ingredients: Lavender, Rose petals, 40 proof Vodka


It looks rather pretty before it ferments!


Lavender and roses fermenting well! Just about done.



Cheesecloth in a bowl. Ready to pour ingredients.



Ingredients poured in to strain.


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Well that's all there is to it!


1 part lavender buds/rose petals. Submerge in Vodka.


Make sure it's in an airtight jar. Let it sit in a dark closet for a week to 10 days.


Strain it, then add to a spritzer of some sort. Give it as a gift, or keep it for yourself!

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A natural way to scent your rooms or closets, which means avoiding the chemical stuff you see people down on their knees sniffing on TV commercials.


Isn't that disgusting? I'm appalled that chemical companies are marketing and promoting their harmful chemicals products in this way. I can't believe they pull that crap and can get away with it....


Oh, well, we can avoid it altogether by making our own hand made and natural products.


Thanks for visiting!


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Friday, 22 April 2011

Happy Earth Day - To All My Fellow Beings!

Today is a day to participate in the health and well being of our planet.
We only have one Mother Earth. We have to take care of her.
Earth Day Links
Canada - http://www.earthday.ca/pub/
U.S - http://www.epa.gov/earthday/
*Don't use pesticides or herbicides in the garden, ever.
*Send a message to manufacturers by purchasing products with less (or recyclable) packaging.
*Turn lights/tv off when not using them.
*Plant flowers in the garden for bees, butterflies and birds.
*Build a composter
*Shop locally
*Buy organic food & organic body products when you can.
*Reduce/Reuse/Recycle
Happy Earth Day!

Thursday, 21 April 2011

Black Bears Visit My Yard - 3 Adorable Cubs!



Mama Bear with three adorable cubs. I was so excited to see them!



Checking out our firepit!


Mama keeping watch.

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I took these photos from my kitchen window. Just happened to be looking out while making lunch and there they were.

Needless to say, my poached eggs boiled over because I totally forgot about them when I saw three cubs. A small price to pay for sure.

The cubs are no bigger than my cat. So cute!

Mama Bear was so gentle with them. A real tribute to Motherhood, that's for sure.

There's some human moms I know that could learn from this bear! ; )

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Gotta love country living! Seeing the bears is a real gift.

Thanks for visiting!

A Busy Week - Back from a Home/Lifestyle Show

Wall Flower Studio - Seed Stand


Plantable Paper Greeting Cards


The Booth - Filled with all natural products

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Well, it's been a busy week here at Wall Flower Studio.

I had a booth at a wonderful show in Lindsay, Ontario, which is about an hours drive south of where I live. The weather could have been better, at least for the drive, windy, rainy and even snowy, but all in all, the show was a real success for me.

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It's nice to get out there, to meet people and making new contacts. People are very receptive to my line of natural toiletries, and of course, the seed balls and soapnuts pretty much sold out!

Nice to be home tho'. Caught up with orders now, and even organized my studio!

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Now, if only that damned snow would melt so I can get in the garden.

Hope it's sunny and warm where you are.

Happy Gardening!

Friday, 8 April 2011

Flowering Friday @ Wall Flower Studio

Irises

I purchased these at the grocery store.

That's what happens when the line up is too long, and temptation for flowers is too great to ignore.

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Played around a bit with this photo on one of my computer programs.

Happy Flowering Friday!

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Tuesday, 5 April 2011

Cutting Celery - Apium graveolens

This year for my kitchen's herb garden, I'm growing Cutting Celery.

It's an actual celery, just without the enlarged stalk, and apparently, it's very popular in Europe.

I find it more aromatic than the regular celery you'd purchase in the grocery store. It has a much finer, or one may say, even a refined flavour.


It's really effortless to grow from seed, too. I've started them under lights indoors, and the seeds germinated very easily.

Cutting Celery is an attractive 18" tall plant. It produces an abundance of dark green foliage that resembles regular celery.

The leaves can be harvested often. Just cut 3/4 way down the stems so that new tender leaves can emerge.

Leaves can be used fresh or dried, as they retain their delicious flavor, for soups, salads, sandwiches, stews. and more.

This is an annual that performs best with fertile soil and in full sun.


They look really nice on a sunny kitchen windowsill, too!

Happy Herb Gardening!

Sunday, 3 April 2011

Soap Nuts - More Eco-Friendly Laundry




These are organic Soap Nuts! The botanical name is Sapindus Mukorossi. This is actually a berry, grown and harvested from India.

Soap nuts contain "Saponin" which is a natural detergent used to clean clothes.

I first read about them a while back and was determined to try them. To be honest, I wanted to find out if it was just Snake oil! But it's not. They really work.


They've become popular as an environmentally friendly alternative to manufactured, chemical detergents .

Just a few nuts can be placed in a cotton drawstring bag in with a washload and reused several times. Soap nuts are safe for washing silk, woolens and other delicate fabrics. That's pretty amazing, really.

I reused a batch for 5 loads of laundry. The soap nuts were a bit mushy with a grey colour when I'd finally finished with them. All I did was compost them for my garden.


They have many benefits to detergent. A clean scent, very fresh! And my clothes were just as soft as the handmade powder I've created.

They're 100% natural, certified organic, chemical-free, fragrance-free, biodegradable and hypoallergenic. Fabulous!


Plus the price point is amazing when compared to most laundry detergents you'll find in the grocery store!

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So, I put 1/2 oz. soap nuts (4-6 berries) in a unbleached muslin wash bag with a drawstring.

I simply tied it shut and tossed it in washing machine.

I re-used it 5 times and then chucked it into the composter

I've read that pre-soaking the berries for a few minutes helps facilitate faster release of saponin (the active ingredient), but I didn't feel the need to do that.


Thanks for visiting! Happy Laundry!

Saturday, 2 April 2011

Greening Up My Laundry - Natural Soap Alternatives

Natural Soap Powder
Being the green thinking person that I am, and because we have a septic system at our home, because we live in a rural location, I've been looking into alternatives to the harsh detergents I've been using for our laundry. I decided to make my own soap powder. The ingredients are one part Sodium bicarbonate, (baking soda) to one part borax (sodium borate, Sodium tetraborate decahydrate ), and a few drops of certified organic, pure essential oils.That's it! Happily, I know there's no dyes, fillers or phosphates in this, and of course, no animal testing! (Phosphates are responsible for the increase of algal blooms which grow on the excess phosphorus and consume most of the oxygen in the waters, killing fish and plants.). 
Well, I've tried for the past few weeks, keeping in mind that I'd like to post about it. I know that it's safe for our high efficiency machines, (both the washer and dryer are front loaders), and only one tablespoon sized scoop cleaned a super size load beautifully. The most remarkable thing is that sometimes I'm sure I've had allergic reactions to the harsher big brand names on the market. So far, with this handmade soap, nothing like that has occurred! Also, I didn't require a fabric softener. The clothes and towels were remarkably soft without it! That's a huge savings in my book. The other thing I like about it is I can use any essential oil to scent the soap! Lavender is really nice, but so is the Vanilla, and Tea Tree. Anyone can make these soaps.
If you're concerned about allergies, the environment, and your septic system, then this is really the way to go! Thanks for visiting! Happy Laundry : )

Friday, 1 April 2011

Friday Flowers From the Garden

Cut from the garden, last fall, some pretty mauve coloured Mums.

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The rain came in torrents the day I cut these from the garden.

All of the flowers were lying on their sides, splattered with soil.

Poor things... What's a gardener / former floral designer to do?

Cut 'em and put 'em in a vase, on the front porch.

They lasted for weeks, since the weather/temps were cool by then.

There's a couple wee pots on the table filled with Sempervivums, (Houseleeks), too.

Like many people, I have tons of these Hens & Chicks growing in the garden.

They spread everywhere. But I like that!

Some are potted up for on the porch and I like to have them on the kitchen windowsill, too.

I tucked a little Reindeer Moss around them, just to add a nice finished look.

The grey/silver look of the moss contrasts nicely with the green plants.

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Happy Flowering Friday!

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