Monday, April 27, 2015

Mother's Day Gift Guide and A Giveaway! ToiletTree Skin Cleansing System

Toilettree Products
 
Mothers Day is coming!  But don't panic!  I know how it is.  I always struggle with getting my mom a gift that is not only something she will like, but also something that expresses that I care for her. And as we all know moms sacrifice allot for their kids.  I always think that the best gift for a mom is something to pamper her.  Mothers are true servants to their family, comforting and loving ceaselessly. So I think on mothers day they deserve a lot of comfort and love!
 

When ToiletTree offered to let me review one of their items I looked through their site.  They carry lines in Skin Care, Travel Accessories, Bathroom Accessories, Oral Care, Grooming, and Bamboo Products.  Needless to say I was challenged to pick something, but then I thought "Hey!  I'm going to get something for myself for once!"  So I chose the ToiletTree Skin Cleansing System.  This set can be for women or men. And it's not just for the face either.  It has attachments for the whole body!
 
System includes: 2 face exfoliators (1 soft for sensitive skin types & 1 medium for normal skin types), 1 body exfoliator and 1 pumice sphere (refills available). Water-Resistant strap for convenient hanging.
 
 
It also comes in a range of colors so you can pick one you or your loved one will like best.
So how does it work?  Here is a description from the company.
 
 
The professional Skin Care System, along with a daily cleaning regimen, helps assist the following:

-Stimulates skin renewal
-Improves overall skin clarity and appearance.
-Removes dead skin cells to expose healthier-looking skin
-Energizes skin and leaves it sooth, soft and radiant.
-Cleans deep to help remove stubborn makeup.
-Enhances absorption of moisturizes
 
I used the system for about two weeks before writing this review.  I used it every day on my face and used the other brush on my body and the pumice sphere for my feet.  I noticed after two uses that the skin on my face was softer, more even toned, my pores looked smaller, and my skin looked fresher since the dead skin was being removed.  Just that in itself made this system a winner! 
 
 Then using the other brush and pumice stone.  My skin is smoother on my arms and legs where I have been using it and as for the pumice stone well....  I have to say I have terrible feet.  I have a hard time setting aside time just to take care of ME.  I think all moms struggle with this.  But the pumice stone has really helped me buff away calluses and make my feet pretty.
 
 
In conclusion the ToiletTree Skin Cleansing System is a wonderful product that lives up to it's description.  It also is very well made and comes with the batteries you need so if you are sending this as a gift she wont have to go out and buy them.  I think any mom would love this as a gift because it gives her an excuse to take some time to take care of herself for a change! 
 
 Also it is very affordable.  Some of the similar systems I have priced are hundreds of dollars!  Way out of my price range.  I would never spend that much on myself.  In fact right now it is on sale for $35.00!  There are allot of other products at ToiletTree that would make great Mother's day gifts so be sure to check them out.

 

Connect with ToiletTree



The Giveaway!
 
ToiletTree is giving one lucky Thrifty Housewife reader their own Skin Cleansing System for Mother's Day!  Use the form below to enter.  All entries are optional, all winning entries will be verified for completion.  Good Luck!
 
 
The Thrifty Housewife was not compensated for this post, I did receive a sample product(s) for the purposes of review. This did not influence my review or my opinions. My views are 100% my own. This post may contain affiliate links. This giveaway is not affiliated with facebook, pinterest, twitter, or any other social media website.  The winner will be chosen through the rafflecopter form which uses Random.org.  Winner will be notified by email within 48 hours of contest end.  Winner has 24 hours to respond to the  email.  Failure to respond will result in a new winner being chosen.  Open to US only.  All winning Entries are verified.
 


Tuesday, April 21, 2015

eShatki Online Customizable Dresses Review and Giveaway!

Can I get a shout out from all the plus size ladies out there?  Because I feel your pain.  For years I have struggled to find dresses and shirts that are not just affordable but feminine and attractive too.   Browsing through the plus size section of a store I often feel like they pick styles and colors that are ugly to the extreme.  Cause guess what?  I want to feel pretty!  I want to feel feminine!  And I want my clothes to fit right!

I have finally found a clothing company that fulfills all those needs.  Ladies I am in LOVE! The company is eShatki.  This is not your run of the mill plus size clothing company.  Their clothes are gorgeous, affordable, and YOU get to customize them.

eShatki sells clothes in sizes 0-36W or Custom to your size, your style, your height. They carry dresses, shirts, shorts, pants, skirts, and tops.  The styles vary from vintage, boho, to modern so there really is something for everyone.  They even carry a great line of wedding dresses for brides and bridesmaids! Check out their new arrivals HERE.

Gingham Check Cotton Dresses, Bow Tied Spring Dresses , Above knee length dresses, belted dresses, blue/white dresses, Check Dresses, Collared Dresses, cotton dresses, faux-wrap dresses, machine wash dresses, midweight dresses, plus size dresses, pocket dresses, Shawl collar dresses, side zip dresses, sleeveless dresses, Surplice Dresses, v-neck dresses, weekend dresses, Woven Check DressesI am a fairly modest person.  I am (ahem!)  big busted naturally, and don't like everything hanging out.  But the thing is our culture says if you have large breasts your neckline should be very deep.  I don't like that.  Also I want my skirts to come below my knees.  I have often had to either custom tailor or even forgo a dress or shirt I loved because it was too revealing.   This is where eShatki is so great.  You can adjust sleeve length, skirt length, and even the cut of the neckline to your own personal tastes.  And it is NOT expensive!

I was sent a dress for the purpose of this review.  I got to adjust the sleeves and skirt length to where I feel comfortable and pretty.  It was incredibly hard to pick from eShatki's selection of dresses.  I love that they have fun vintage styles and am longing for about a dozen other dresses from their site.  Finally I have found a store that recognizes that plus size girls want to feel pretty too!  I highly recommend eShatki to ANY woman.



Connect with eShatki

 
 

The Giveaway!

 
eShatki is being super generous by giveaway away TWO Gift cards to their store for $25.00 each.  These are good to use with all their sales and promotions.  As a new customer if you sign up for their newsletter you get $40.00 off your first order.  I also noticed from getting my newsletter that they frequently have buy two get one free sales and other promotions too!  Use the entry form below to enter.  Open to U.S. and Canada.  All entries are optional, all winning entries will be validated for completion.  Good luck!
 
 
The Thrifty Housewife was not compensated for this post, I did receive a sample product(s) for the purposes of review. This did not influence my review or my opinions. My views are 100% my own. This post may contain affiliate links. This giveaway is not affiliated with facebook, pinterest, twitter, or any other social media website.  The winner will be chosen through the rafflecopter form which uses Random.org.  Winner will be notified by email within 48 hours of contest end.  Winner has 24 hours to respond to the  email.  Failure to respond will result in a new winner being chosen.  Open to US only.  All winning Entries are verified. 

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Uses for the Wild Violets in Your Yard

I love wild violets.  They are one of the first flowers to bloom in the spring and have a sweet floral fragrance. Something about them minds me of my girlhood and the innocent happiness I felt back then, even though where we lived I never saw them growing.  My children love to pick them and give me little bouquets. Little did I know till a few years ago that violets have many medicinal uses as well.

Violets bloom in spring in your yard and if you have shady places they can bloom all summer.  Both the leaves and the blossoms are edible and useful medicinally.  So the other morning we went out and picked wild violets growing in our yard.  NOTE!  Only pick from areas you know were not sprayed or treated with chemicals!


 Here are a few links to pages on the uses of violets and different ways to process them.  I dried the leaves for tea and then used the flowers for making violet soap. You can also eat the flowers in salads and use them on cakes if you Candy them.

L'Aromatheque Violette Perfume Extract 8.5 ml perfumeI also love the scent of Violet Perfume.  It is perfect as a first perfume for a young girl who is old enough for a perfume but still young.  Here is a Violette Perfume from Amazon that has great review.





Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Green Toys Review And Giveaway

Green Toys Inc. Home Page
 
 
Have you ever wondered exactly what went into the making of the toys your child is playing with?   I have wondered about that frequently, especially since it is a well known fact that many toys are made with toxic paints, plastics, and metals.  Your child then touches them all day and sticks their hands into their mouths.
 
So I started to search out safe toys for my four children. Toys made of non-toxic materials is essential to me.  That's when I became aware of Green ToysGreen Toys is a company that creates toys that are not only safe for your little ones, but made every step of the way from the raw materiel's to the packaging right here in the USA!
 
Here is What Sold Me on Green Toys
 
  • Tested by nationally recognized, independent, third-party labs (located, yes, in the USA.) They contain no traceable amounts of Phthalates or BPA. They are also designed without any external coatings, eliminating the fear of lead paint.

  • All Green Toys products are packaged in recycled corrugated boxes with no plastics, cellophane or twist-ties, and are 100% recyclable. All Green Toys products are 100% made in the USA. To be more specific, they are produced in California, a state known for strict toy safety and environmental laws.

  • All their toys use recycled milk containers as the main ingredient for manufacturing

  • Cost is very reasonable and when compared to a similar product at Walmart they are pretty much the same!
 
I was sent the Green Toys Train for the purpose of this review. My five year old son especially like to play with inside the house and out. He makes up all sorts of imaginative story's about what is happening to the train.  For the child that likes them, his is a perfect train.
 
It is very well made and I liked the attractive packaging.  This train is extremely tough. It can take allot of abuse from an active toddler and also is easy to put together so even a two year old can link the cars together.  I also liked that I didn't have to fight through the thousands of ties and tapes that most toy companies seem to think that they must put into their packaging.  Green toys does that on purpose to eliminate waste.
 

 
 
There are so many other toys that Green Toys sells that I would love for my kids, from Kitchen Toys to really neat Outdoor Toys for this coming spring.  I also would want some more of their tub toys.  They have a really cool Ferry Boat that I know my little Viking Boy would adore.
I would recommend Green Toys to anyone looking for safe, affordable, and sustainably made toys for the special children in their life.

Connect With Green Toys

 

The Giveaway!

 Green Toys® Train
Green Toys has generously offered to give one lucky Thrifty Housewife reader their  Green Toys Train !  Use the entry form below to enter, all entries are options, all winning entries will be verified.  Good Luck! 


 
 The Thrifty Housewife was not compensated for this post, I did receive a sample product(s) for the purposes of review. This did not influence my review or my opinions. My views are 100% my own. This post may contain affiliate links. This giveaway is not affiliated with facebook, pinterest, twitter, or any other social media website.  The winner will be chosen through the rafflecopter form which uses Random.org.  Winner will be notified by email within 48 hours of contest end.  Winner has 24 hours to respond to the  email.  Failure to respond will result in a new winner being chosen.  Open to US only.  All winning Entries are verified. 

Thursday, April 9, 2015

Great BIG Canvas Bus Roll Giveaway ($250.00) and Review!

I love canvas art.  It is beautiful, stylish, and very affordable.  You can get your favorite artists paintings or photographs, or create your own custom art. 
 
The people over at Great BIG Canvas have not only made the process incredibly simple, but also have a huge selection of options so that you can get pretty much anything you want. 
 
From Photo Prints, Photographic Art, and Famous Paintings your choices are enormous.  The genres go from traditional to contemporary so there is no trouble finding art to fit your personal style.  I love to be surrounded by things I find beautiful so Great BIG Canvas is a great resource for me.
 
 For the purpose of this review I was given the chance to create my own Custom Bus Roll.  These are really hot right now and there are so many ideas for your own Bus Roll.  Check the out HERE on pinterest where I found great ideas.

I decided I wanted to use the Bus Roll to decorate my sons room.  I gave their room a camping theme since both my boys love to camp and be outdoors.  You can see my post on how I decorated it for less than $100.00 HERE.

I wanted a Bus Roll that not only went with the camping theme, but also was encouraging of my son's relationship to each other.  After I found what I wanted to say on the Bus Roll the rest was simple.  I was able to customize it to the colors, pattern, and even the font I wanted in very easy steps.  The site walks you through what you need to do!

I have to say it looks great in their room and they both love it!  You could do the same thing for daughters who share a room or even for you and your spouse! But don't stop there.  I found hundreds of different ideas for Bus Rolls.

 

 

 

Connect With Great BIG Canvas

 

Giveaway!

 
Great BIG Canvas has been overwhelmingly generous by offering to give one luck Thrifty Housewife Reader a credit to their store to use on a Bus Roll for $250.00!  Use the giveaway form below to enter.  All entries are optional, all winning entries will be verified for completion.  Good Luck!
 
The Thrifty Housewife was not compensated for this post, I did receive a sample product(s) for the purposes of review. This did not influence my review or my opinions. My views are 100% my own. This giveaway is not affiliated with facebook, pinterest, twitter, or any other social media website.  The winner will be chosen through the rafflecopter form which uses Random.org.  Winner will be notified by email within 48 hours of contest end.  Winner has 24 hours to respond to the  email.  Failure to respond will result in a new winner being chosen. The Thrifty Housewife is not responsible for prize fulfillment. Open to US only.  All Entries are verified.

Monday, March 30, 2015

Making Candles From Home Rendered Tallow - Easy!

 
I started out rendering tallow (beef fat) with the idea to make my own soap. Did you know that many soaps you buy in the store contain beef tallow?  It's true!  Beef fat was the fat of choice when people made their own candles and soap on a regular basis.  One reason is that beef tallow is very white, scentless, and hard when rendered properly.  Also when butchering a beef you get allot of fat! 

My experience rendering tallow was not only easy but free.  I went to our local butcher and asked if I could have any good beef fat, he was only too eager to give it to me for free.  He also ground it for me so I wouldn't have to chop it.  I highly recommend you have it ground because otherwise the chopping takes forever!

So why did I use beef tallow?  First off because it is free!  Second it is a waste product that otherwise wouldn't be utilized.  Third it is renewable and from grass fed local beef as we live in ranching country.  Fourth it is GMO free.  If you use soy wax you have to realize that soybeans are not only ALL GMO, but also are hugely fertilized with chemicals and sprayed with tons of pesticides.  I don't really think of them as renewable since they are so heavy in chemicals and are GMO. The cattle that go to our local butcher never see a feed lot.  They are kept on range land for their whole lives, and live happy cow lives. Fourth is that tallow makes great candles and soap naturally.

Rendering is easy but I will save that for a later post. Here is how I made my own candles.  You can buy candle making supplies online.

So first I started out with my snow white rendered beef tallow.

 
As I scooped the tallow into the pot on the stove my dog Nika licked up any fallen bits. 
She was like "man send me some more of that manna from heaven!"

 
Here are my supplies.
Jelly Jars from the thrift store,
and candle wicks,
 essential oils, and tape for holding the wicks in place.

 
After melting the tallow which only takes a minuet I put four cups into this stainless steel measuring pitcher.  Then I mixed in for each cup of tallow - 4 drops citronella, 4 drops lavender, 4 drops lemon, and 4 drops rosemary essential oils. I gently mixed these into the warm tallow.  You don't want it too hot because then the essential oils will evaporate.

 
The jars ready to receive the scented tallow

 
A trick to keep the wick centered. 
Punch a hole through some masking tape and tada!

 
The candles done and setting up.

 
The finished candles that I am hoping to sell. 
Could this be the beginnings of a home business?
 
 
Here is the extra large one I made. 
The candle burns clean and with a light citrus scent. 
There is absolutely NO beef scent. 
The candle is nice and bright too.
 

 
The whole process took me about a half an hour to make 10 candles.  It would have been less time except I had to fiddle with the tape to figure out the best way to hold the wicks.  Still for organic and non toxic candles that is pretty great!

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Review/Giveaway Golden Blossom Honey

 
I don't know about you but I love honey for cooking and sweetening things.  I am trying to use only all natural sweeteners for our family.  But I only buy American produced honey due to the fact that honey's from foreign countries can contain all sorts of nasty stuff and be cut with things like corn syrup so your not even getting 100% honey! Look at the honey you get in the grocery store and you will notice it will say that it's honey is not just from America but also lots of other countries in a blend.  And with how expensive honey is, even the stuff in the store, I want to make sure I'm getting real honey.

So I am excited to introduce you to Golden Blossom Honey. They are a company that sells only PURE honey produced right here in the USA.  I was sent four bottles of their honey for the purposes of this review.  Here is a little info about the company

GOLDEN BLOSSOM HONEY is a product of the U.S.A. and comes entirely from U.S. beekeepers, who receive a bonus from John Paton, Inc. for the high quality honey that they provide. All GOLDEN BLOSSOM items are packed in accordance with the standards set forth by the Orthodox Union with the 24 ounce size also packed Kosher for Passover.  

The first thing I noticed was the rich amber color of the honey.  As I poured some out to try I saw how nice and thick it was.  Pure honey is very thick in consistency. As my son (he loves honey) and I tried some we both loved the rich honey flavor.  My son puts it on his morning toast, his afternoon sandwiches, and on rolls at dinner.  I like it in my tea, coffee, and yogurt.  I use it when I make smoothies and in baking.

We also received a bottle of Organic White Forest Honey.  This was just as good with a nice floral flavor. Golden Blossom proudly sells Organic White Forest Honey, a blend of organic honeys sourced from Brazil. As it is organic and sources from a forest it is not cut with corn syrup or other nasty ingredients.

Golden Blossom Honey is also great for cooking a baking. They even have a section, found HERE, full of delicious recipe using their honey.  If your trying to get off processed sugars you should really check out the recipe section because it is huge!

They also have a really nice section on health and beauty which you can find HERE.  I am trying out several of their recipes right now.


Connect With Golden Blossom Honey

 

An Awesome Giveaway!

 
Golden Blossom Honey is being super generous by giving away four bottle in various sizes of their honey.  This includes their organic White Forest Honey!  Use the Giveaway form below to enter.  All entries are optional, all winning entries are verified for completion.  Good Luck!
 
 
The Thrifty Housewife was not compensated for this post, I did receive a sample product(s) for the purposes of review. This did not influence my review or my opinions. My views are 100% my own. This giveaway is not affiliated with facebook, pinterest, twitter, or any other social media website.  The winner will be chosen through the rafflecopter form which uses Random.org.  Winner will be notified by email within 48 hours of contest end.  Winner has 24 hours to respond to the  email.  Failure to respond will result in a new winner being chosen. The Thrifty Housewife is not responsible for prize fulfillment. Open to US only.  All Entries are verified.

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Fried Apples - Old Fashioned Cooking

After reading the Little House books I was interested in trying out the idea of fried apples.  This was an accompaniment to dinners and breakfasts in the book Farmer Boy.  So I looked it up on the net and then added my own tweaks. Fried apples are really delicious and are perfect for cold evenings.  This is really good with pork or chicken or with a hearty breakfast.  Easy to do too, as long as you have lots of apples.  I buy my apples in bulk from an orchard for 50 cents a lb. and got 125 lbs. so I have lots of apples to play with.  The cooking time varies depending on how many apples you use and what variety. You want to use a cooking or baking apple like galas, granny smith, etc..  I use a mixture of them.  Here's the recipe


Take 10 large apples or less if your feeding less but this reheats well


Peel

Then slice into 1/4 in slices

 
In your skillet melt 1 stick of butter and add apples and then cook over medium high heat adjusting if apples are burning



When apples start to get soft grate over some nutmeg if you like and add one teaspoon of cinnamon and 1/2 cup brown sugar.  Mix up well.  When the apples start to caramelize and get brown they are done.  Serve with breakfast or a dinner of chicken or pork.  Serve warm or hot.