Blog posts in this category will be a favorite product or service of mine.  I love to share what I love!

Featured

Sugar and Spice Candle Co.

I received free products in exchange for this blog post. All opinions are my own and I do not accept free products for positive reviews.

Welcome to another addition of First Friday Favorite!  Just pretend it's the first friday okay?  This month I want to introduce you to a new favorite of mine.  You may not know but I'm a fan of soy candles.  They burn clean.  They don't fill your house with soot and the fumes are not harmful like traditional parrafin candles.  The scent is stronger and longer lasting.  Basically they are the winner.  My friend Heather just started a sweet little candle company and I want to introduce you to it.

First of all meet Heather, a twenty something newlywed.  She went to school to be a hairdresser and graduated.  She loved doing hair and started her new business but unfortunately, some health problems soon presented themselves.  Heather is no longer able to do hair but instead of sitting idly by she started this new company.  I love that entrepreneur spirit!

Heather brought by samples of her hand poured candles for me to sniff and well sample.  I am kind of a scent snob.  The one down side I find is that the scent is stronger with soy candles, so I was a little worried I wouldn't like some of the scents.  Well, let me tell you,it actually proved difficult to pick a favorite because they were all beautiful.  I did eventually choose a favorite.  Her scent Beach Linen has a very clean and fresh scent. The other scent I loved was a special order called Nag Champa.  If you know that word you know that smell.  It's earthy and a bit masculine.  I find I like the more masculine scents.  Heather also offers wax melts.  Apparently locally it is now against city ordinance to burn candles in apartment buildings so this provision makes candles available to all :)  

So I have to say my very favorite thing about Sugar and Spice Candles is their price.  They are an incredible value at only $10 per candle or 2 for $15.  Wax melts are only $5!!!  and shipping is also only $5.  With these incredible prices I'm sure you are wondering what is available and how to order!

  Well first let's talk about scents.  You'll be happy to know that there are several seasonal scents and she does take special requests.

Beach Linen - a crisp clean fresh scent

Gingerbread - Cookies anyone?

Pumpkin Pie - a wonderful seasonal treat

Cinnamon Bun - like an in home bakery

Cedarwood Vanilla - a very interesting homey blend

To order direct message Heather on Facebook or Instagram.  And you can also try to win a pumpkin pie candle by following Sugar and Spice on Instagram and comment a heart emoji on my Instagram post. for an extra entry like Sugar and Spice on Facebook and let me know on my Insta post.  Light a candle and as always Stay Crafty!

66 Hits
0 Comments
Featured

The Sitch on Lipsense

I received free products in exchange for this blog post. All opinions are my own and I do not accept free products for positive reviews.

Okay so unless you've been off of the internet for the last 3 years you've probably heard of Lipsense!  My friend gave me a set to try and tell you guys all about.  If you aren't familiar with it, let me break it down for you really quick.   Lipsense is lipstick! Lipstick that doesn't come off for 4-12 hours.  Now when I first heard that I was like what the heck is it?!  It must be made up of some kind of gross chemicals right?  But low and behold it is 98% natural.  She even gave me the ingredient book!

Read More

Continue reading
339 Hits
0 Comments
Featured

First Friday Favorite: Flourish Leather Co.

I recieved products in exchange for this blog post review. I do not accept products or compensation in exchange for a posititve review.  All opinions are my own

This month's First Friday Favorite is REALLY a favorite of mine!  If you don't know about Flourish Leather, I'm about to seriously improve your day!  I'm so happy you're here.

Read More

Continue reading
327 Hits
0 Comments
Featured

First Friday Favorite: Rags 2 Roses

I received free products in exchange for this blog post. I do not give positive reviews in exchange for products.  All opinions are my own.

This month's First Friday Favorite is one I am so excited to tell you about! As you know my Baby Girl is quite the stylish little diva and that's in part thanks to Rags 2 Roses.  One thing about me is when I find something I love and that has great value I become obsessed with it.  As a result Baby Girl and my Big Boy have  A LOT  of bows/bow ties.  

Read More

Continue reading
Recent Comments
Nina
Those bows are so cute! I love that you can keep them within the same color family or mix and match!
Saturday, 06 May 2017 15:39
April Huggins
She also has new products and prints coming out all the time. I am constantly ordering from her!
Monday, 08 May 2017 21:06
April Huggins
She's definitely my favorite too! She is pretty quick too which is an added bonus I forgot to mention!
Friday, 12 May 2017 18:27
636 Hits
4 Comments

Plaid People Laundry Lather & Linen Spray

I received an unspeakable discount in exchange for this blog post.  I do not accept products in exchange for positive reviews.  All opinons are my own.

My family is SENSITIVE!  My kids break out in eczema rashes at the drop of a hat.  The baby gets diaper rash if we use the wrong detergent on her cloth diapers or if we buy the wrong brand of disposables.  My husband has terrible allergies and most store bought scents make me ill and itchy.  We're a mess!  

I choose natural products whenever possibe and even then I have to be mindful of everyone's allergies.  So the following review comes to you with the utmost honesty and a thorough evaluation.

This month's First Friday Favorite is Plaid People.  Plaid People is a small business offering handmade laundry lather and linen sprays.  Natasha is the owner and artisan behind the scenes and she let me sample her amazing products.  Let me tell you I am in LOVE. 

Natasha has been making natural products for her own home and family for about 7 years and now she makes them for you!  She is passionate about using the very best natural ingredients to yield the best results.  Her products are all natural, vegan and eco-friendly.  As you now know, that is right up my alley.

Read More


The first thing I sampled was the linen sprays.  Her linen sprays are formulated with 100% pure essential oils.  They are perfect to use before ironing or to spray on pillows, sheets or laundry.  Or if you're like me, you might become obsessed and spray it on your entire house!  I spray my throw blankets, my curtains and pretty much everything else. 

There are four seasonal scents.

  • Winter Wood - reminiscent of a winter cabin with a wood burning stove.  It contains cedar, woodfir needle, cardamon, patchouli and sandlwood
  • Spring Hillside - this scent brings to mind new life after a spring rain.  A blend of grapefruit, eucalyptus, lemon, lime and lemongrass.
  • Autumn Spice - This spicy scent smells just like warm mulled spices and autumn days.  A blend of cinnamon, sweet orange and camphor.
  • Summer Sun - this burst of citrus will remind you of fresh cut grass, hot summer days and crisp line dried clothes.  It contains a blend of sandlwood, lemon, tea tree and black pepper.

These scents are all great.  They are just the right concentration to fill my home with the scent of my favorite season without overwhelming my senses.  My two favorites are Summer Sun and Autumn Spice.  My house smells ah-mazing!

So I know you're probably wondering does this all natural laundry detergent really work?  I ran it through my toughest laundry, including the towel I left in the washer that soured and got disgusting. This stuff is the real deal and there are 5 scents plus unscented to choose from.  They, of course, smell amazing.  Lavendar was my favorite.  It had quite a lingering scent.  My towels and clothes smell fresh and came out soft and comfy.  

The biggest challenge I put Natasha's laundry lather through was baby girl's cloth diaper laundry.  Soiled diapers are no joke and they must come perfectly clean or they can cause diaper rash and be super stinky.  I used unscented since oils can cause wicking.  When it comes to cloth diapers it's really important that they come completely clean and stay absorbent for the next time around.

Baby Girl's diapers came out fresh and funk free.  No diaper rash followed and they stayed nice and absorbent even after a week of washing.

Plaid People is my favorite new find and you should totally check it out!  Find them on Etsy and follow them Instagram for promotions and updates OR WIN with my latest collaborative GIVEAWAY!!!!

What you'll win:

Plaid People is giving away TWO linen sprays($13 each) Spring Hillside and Summer Sun so you'll be all set for this season and next. (P.S. I'm not kidding when I say I LOVE the summer sun scent)

AND  I am giving away a Phenomenal Woman tote ($22) from Hugged Apparel

This is a $48 value! (plus no shipping charge)

Click to enter our giveaway

Open to US residents only. Ends 4/14/17

 

631 Hits
1 Comment

Maud Candle Co

 I was provided with free products in exchange for this blog post.  All opinions and reviews are my own and honest.  I do not accept products for a positive review.

It's time for a First Friday Favorite!  Today I'm introducing you to Maud Candle Co.  The owner, Cyndi, is just as cute as can be.  She and her husband run their company out of their Kansas City home.  The company is named after Cyndi's grandmother (Sarah Maud) and each candle is hand poured.  Maud Candle Co's products are eco-friendly and are carbon neutral.  They are made with fine fragrances that are infused with essential oils and their wax is all natural and American grown soy. 

 

So I was curious.  What's the big deal about soy candles as opposed to those paraffin candles I can go pick up at Walmart?  I want to know what I'm paying for! 

  • Soy candles are healthier.  Standard paraffin candles, like those ones at Walmart, are made from a by product of petroleum oil and increase the CO2 in your environment.  Soy candles like Maude do not increase CO2 and are made from all natural soy.
  • Soy candles are cost effective.  Soy candles burn 50% longer and more evenly- which means you won't have that annoying wax well of wasted candle up the sides of your jar.
  • Soy candles burn cleaner. You know that black soot that gets in your candle?  Well besides being ugly, over time that soot can actually discolor your walls and furniture.  But that's not the case with soy candles!  Soy candles produce negligable amounts of soot and because of this your candle stays pretty and your house is soot free!
  • The scent from is soy candle is stronger. Another reason I feel like I'm getting more bang for my buck is soy candles have a lower melting point and a larger amount of liquid wax pools around the wick when burning.  This liquid wax is what you smell when the candle burns, so the scent is stronger and longer than a paraffin candle.

 For more information on the difference between soy and paraffin candles visit this helpful blog.

 So we talked about why soy candles are WAY superior to paraffin but how do I like Maud's candles?  I LOVE them.  Cyndi sent me three scents to sample: 

Noble - My Noble candle came in a beautiful gold tin.  It is a bold and spicy musky scent.  It fills my living room with a decadent and dare I say masculine scent. It has notes of leather, tobacco and black pepper.  I never would have imagined I would love this scent so much!

 Velvet - This one turned out to be my very favorite.  Velvet is a soft and sweet medley of cinnamon, clove and nutmeg with a creamy vanilla finish.  Vanilla is my jam so this was an obvious winner for me. 

 Maven - Maven was a close second in my book with the scent of sandlewood and a hint of vanilla.  It is classic and earthy. 

 

 Royal - The other scent offered by Maud is Royal. A friend of mine has this one so I went over to give it a sniff.  It is a sweet treat of berries and cream! 

 

 

You guys I love these candles.  They smell amazing and they are beautifully packaged.  The packaging is simple, clean and stylish enough to become part of your decor.  Basically, Maud is a WINNER.  I love the scents.  You may not know this about me but I am a scent snob.  I usually hate everything that isn't vanilla.  Maud has me rethinking my prejudice.  I love the packaging and I love that these all natural candles aren't releasing carcinogens and soot into the air my family breathes.  

Wanna try them for yourself?  Head on over to Maud Candle Co's store and light up your world and as always Stay Crafty!

 Want to follow Maud Candle Co?

On Facebook, On InstagramOnline

Recent Comments
April Huggins
I can totally relate. I'm so sensitive to fragrance. I hope Maud Candles work out for you! I personally LOVE them!
Wednesday, 22 March 2017 16:18
603 Hits
2 Comments

First Friday Favorite: Pura Bottles And a Personal Look at PPD

 I was provided with free products in exchange for this blog post.  All opinions and reviews are my own and honest.  I do not accept products for a positive review.

Well friends, today I'm talking about something a little different.  Something taboo.  Something most people try to hide or feel ashamed of.  Post-Partum Depression.  Now before you go running for the hills, think about this, between 11-20% of women who give birth each year suffer from post-partum depression.  That is approximately 600,000 women in the United States.  That means that most likely you or someone you know has been affected.

 

After I gave birth to my beautiful baby girl I had a lot of trouble coping.  Small things seemed big.  I missed an entire weekend with family because the idea of our kids together being loud and rowdy made me want to crawl under a rock. I could not handle it.  That was first time someone who loved me mentioned post-partum depression.  I was skeptical.  I was just tired.  I'm just introverted.  But, my loud loveable boy, then age 4, was LOUD and rambunctious and on my very last nerve every. single. day.  As soon as my husband would get home from work I would hide out in the bedroom away from my babies.  

I started to think and to feel like my existence was inconsequential.  Like my family, including my sweet nursing baby girl would be better off without me. That's when I did something scary!

 

I told the truth.  First to myself then to my husband.  I told him that I wasn't just tired and grumpy.  I literally did not want to exist.  He was so supportive and so was the rest of my family. Which is just what I needed.

So my husband went with me to the doctor.  The doctor said I could keep nursing the baby while on a medication that had been approved and tested in nursing mothers.  He said it works well for a lot of people and he and my pediatrician had never seen adverse affects on nursing babies from it.  So I did it because at this point it was a matter of life and death.  I was apprehensive and so I took the medicine at night and pumped and dumped in the mornings so that she would have as little as possible of the medication.  I started feeling better..... but then I had an allergic reaction to the medicine.  I was DEVASTATED.  

 

The new medication had not been tested on nursing mothers.  It was 'probably ok' but had unknown effects on the nursing child.  I thought maybe I just wouldn't take medicine and would somehow be fine but quickly realized it just wasn't an option.  I felt very frustrated and powerless.  For my own peace of mind I had to quit breastfeeding. That might not seem like a big deal but it was.  It was so hard. The hardest!  My entire body wanted to nurse that baby.  We all know breast is best and I wanted what was best for her.  But in our case that had become formula.  

There were a couple of things that helped to ease my mind.  I did a lot of research and found the best formula - in my opinion- and the best bottles on the market.  That's what I'm going to tell you about now.  Bottles.  Bottles aren't cheap and they're usually plastic or glass sometimes stainless but they always have plastic components.  It's no secret that plastic is not great for us but I'm convinced it's really not great for our growing babies.  So while searching for options I found PURA Stainless.  Their bottles are innovative and unique.  Not only are they 100% plastic free but they grow with your baby.  You can interchange their different lids on all of their bottles.  We started with baby bottle nipples but have moved on the sippy lids.  Next there is a straw or pop top option all made from silicone not plastic!  

 

So you might expect these bottles to be outrageously expensive but they are not.  They run between 13.99 - 23.99 in the infant department and the higher price is for a vacuum sealed insulated bottle that will keep a drink warm or cold.  Check it out! www.purastainless.com

 

 

Obviously a bottle is not a cure for post-partum depression but it was part of my journey toward better mental health.  Knowing my baby had the best I could provide her with eased my mom guilt over no longer breastfeeding.

Do you or someone you know suffer from post-partum depression?  I can say from experience there IS hope and you CAN feel better!

In Springfield there are several resources.  One is the Post-partum Support Group.  It's run by the Doula Foundation and meets downtown the 1st and 3rd Tuesday of the month from 6-8 pm.  Call 417-832-9222 to register.

Personally I found the book Feeling Good by David D. Burns to be an amazing tool to help me.

 

Some other resources:

Suicide Prevention Hotline

1-800-273-TALK (8255)

 

Behavioral Health Response

1-800-811-4760

offers 24 hour counseling and crisis intervention

 

Postpartum Support International

1-800-944-4773

Next week, we'll be back to crafty selves with a pillow making tutorial.  Take care of yourselves mamas!  And as always, Stay Crafty!

 

Recent Comments
Andra Kiperts-Feller
You are brave and i admire you.
Friday, 03 February 2017 10:08
Ami
Beautifully written, April. It is scary to feel like you don't want to exist but even scarier to reach out and ask for help. I had... Read More
Friday, 03 February 2017 21:44
1044 Hits
3 Comments

Follow me on Bloglovin'

Follow

Follow me on Bloglovin'

Follow