Of Individual Worth

Ranga and I are currently working on completing the Personal Progress program.  It’s a lot harder than I thought and it makes me even more proud of my oldest daughter for having completed her program without my direct influence.  Ranga and I decided the first value I needed to concentrate on was Individual Worth.  It likely stems from the fact that my heart and head can’t quite agree on exactly how much this individual is worth, but hey.  One of the experiences requires us to ask a few people to tell us what things they think God has blessed us with and then record our thoughts and feelings afterwards in our journals.  I’m not sure I’m ready to share my thought and feelings on what has been said but I do want to share what’s been said.

A Dear Friend from my Ward said:

When you asked me to help you with your personal progress – telling the things I feel like the Lord has blessed you with – the very FIRST thing that came to my mind about your talents isarticulation of speech.  You have been blessed with an increased amount of it and are able to convey your thoughts, feelings and ideas with complete and thorough accuracy.  When you explain something, people understand.  This is a HUGE blessing.  I’ve listened to some of your craft tutorials and this blessing is apparent.  In addition to this articulation you have a quick mindand a great vocabulary.  Your mind is able to think everything through and then come back to the thought at hand and complete it without getting distracted.  These skills have to be helpful as a mother, friend, co-worker, latter-day saint, etc.

You have been blessed with an innate sense of “right & wrong”. You couple this blessing with the one above and you are able to influence others to do what is right.  I’ve seen you do this with your children.  I’ve seen you intervene when a child was doing something ‘wrong’ and you were able to explain them why what they were doing was wrong and show them WHY they should do what’s right.  It’s hard to put it into words – and I don’t have an EXACT example, but I know that your kids KNOW that you know what’s right and that you want to DO what’s right, and furthermore, you expect THEM to do what’s right.  Simply said, you hold yourself to a high standard of righteousness despite what anyone else chooses yet you don’t hold yourself as “above” anyone.

You have been blessed with a testimony and have a relationship with Heavenly Father.  It may not be a talent to have a testimony, but your blessing of fortitude & perseverance in times of difficulty have probably aided in your development of it.  This same blessing of perseverance has guided you back to church and helped you as a single mother.  It’s helped you financially as you don’t give up and keep looking for opportunities in raising your family.  I can only imagine that this same determination has been what’s kept you in moving forward, even in times of personal struggle.  Heavenly Father has blessed you to know that you are not alone.  He has given that to your spirit somewhere deep within, to KNOW that you are His and that He is there for you.  Perhaps he knew you would need extra resilience to live your life here on earth. This is another great blessing that others do not have.

I know your family is not ‘traditional’ (who’s really is!) but you have a huge capacity to love and to do it with a pure heart.  You are faithful & loyal to your family despite whether they have let you down, been there for you, grown up with you or even the same color as you.  Your heart loves with a blind fold on.  And those who are loved by you are not loved conditionally.  You may not love what another does, but I know you have been blessed with a heat that loves them and sees the good IN them.

You have been blessed with a mind & body that functions.  It’s an obvious blessing that you have a talent for creativity.  You see the beauty of life and contribute to it with the imagination of your mind and the use of your hands.  No all people have this blessing.  And with these physical blessings – I have to say, that I really enjoy your beautiful smile.  😉

I know there are probably MORE blessings, even ones you haven’t received, but these are the BIG ONES that I am aware of.  Thanks for letting me share my thoughts with you & I hope what I’ve written will be helpful to you in your project!

One of my dearest Crafty Buddies said:

1. You’re dedicated as a mother and friend. As hard as things have been you haven’t given up on your kids, school or friends. As hard as depression is, you haven’t retreated into yourself.
2. You seem to learn fast. You grew out of your Cricut and Camera pretty quickly.
3. You’re creative. Being able to take a blank canvas in Photoshop and create something beautiful (i.e. your FB cover photo). All of your DIY stuff.
4. You’re patient. I’ve asked you a TON of questions about a bunch of different things and you’ve never told me “girl you ask too many questions” or “I feel like I’m talking to a child with all the questions you ask” and you haven’t given me the brush off because of all of my questions.
5. You’re giving and helpful. Sending me the links to the tutorials and textures so that I didn’t have to look them up instead of just telling me to “google it yourself”. Starting the DIY blog to help people who have also fallen on hard times. You might not be able to give them money but you’ve helped them to use the little money they do have better. Speaking of which:
6. You’ve become a good steward with the money you’ve received.

My Sister Said:

Compassionate. Crafty in a good way. Ambitious. Pretty. Reliable & a good teacher.

And, though I didn’t ask him to take part in the experience, my Daddy reminded me yesterday that I have worth I cannot even imagine because I am a daughter of God and as such, capable of becoming like Him.  While I totally knew that I mattered to people before this experience, I honestly had no idea how much value I have to so many people.  I am grateful for the Young Women’s Personal Progress Program and I am grateful for the opportunity I have to work on these value experiences with my youngest daughters.  Understanding who I am as a daughter of God helps do many great things for my understanding and sense of Individual Worth.

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Pumpkin Smash Clone

We LOVE smoothies.  We love pumpkin and we love Jamba Juice’s Pumpkin Smash Smoothie.  The problem is, it’s only available in the fall and smoothies are often best on a nice hot summer day.  We love pumpkin so much we eat it pretty much year round.  Now we can enjoy a Pumpkin Smash Smoothie anytime we want!  YAY!  Here’s how we do it our Ninja Blender shown below.

Ninja™ NJ600 Professional Blender

You will need ice, pumpkin pie mix (use the mix don’t do it your own with fresh pumpkin or any of that), soy milk and frozen  yogurt.  Jamba Juice uses plain vanilla fro you.  We prefer caramel macadamia nut.

Now…empty and entire ice-cube tray into the blender, next a couple scoops of frozen yogurt, then half a large can of pumpkin pie mix and finally a little soy milk and blend.  Here’s what the ones we just made look like:

It’s important to note that you MUST use pumpkin pie mix.  We have tried it with canned pumpkin and our own spices and it didn’t taste good at all.  We’ve tried it with fresh pumpkin and all our own spices too and it’s better but still not great.  Today’s batch was a little thin and we used 2% milk instead of soy milk.  I don’t think there’s any real taste difference so will probably just use regular milk going forward.  Enjoy!

DIY toothpaste

Eureka I have found the cure to the age-old fight over toothpaste tubes and do you squeeze from the bottom or the middle.  Oh yeah and it’s a great way to save money too!  Yep I sure did make my own toothpaste.  Now I have to tell you that this is EPIC for me to even try because all the recipes I found use one main ingredient…baking soda.  My Daddy has a sure-fire cure to fix just about everything….baking soda water.  I can’t stand it.  The baking soda aftertaste brings back some really unpleasant memories so suffice it to say, I don’t drink baking soda water.  We go through a lot of toothpaste around here.  I wish I could say it’s because we brush our teeth all the dang time but alas…it’s mostly because the kids leave the cap off, it dries out and gets nasty.  Then, to use it, you have to pry/dig out the dried toothpaste and well yeah it’s just a hassle.   Last week when Ranga and I were DIYing Febreeze and fabric softener she asked if I thought we could make our own toothpaste.  Sure enough…we can.

The recipe and instructions came from the DIY Natural blog.  Specifically, this link.  In the instructions in this recipe, it said to use sea salt, baking soda, and extract if you want to flavor it , so here’s what I did:

Here’s what you’ll need:

About 3/4 cup baking soda

3 handfuls of water (more of you want it thinner, less if you want it thicker)

1 vial of Wilton’s Peppermint Candy extract (I got mine in a 3-pack at Wal-Mart)

1 storage container (I mixed my toothpaste right in my container)

Sea Salt (or other coarse salt) if desired

Now…here’s what I did.  First I ground some of my sea salt into the bottom of my storage container…I didn’t use enough (3 twists of the shaker) and either I ground it too fine or didn’t use enough because I can’t taste or feel the sea salt.  My toothpaste seems to work very well regardless though.  Next pour the entire vial of peppermint candy extract into the container.  You may want to use more.  I guesstimate that this is maybe a teaspoon or two  and it does taste minty but there is still strong baking soda taste too  In future batches, I will use more extract.  Next you need to add water, a handful at a time and stir it into the baking soda, extract, salt mixture until it reaches your desired consistency.  Here’s what my finished product looked like:

I don’t have savings information available because I buy huge bags of baking soda and sea salt grinders at Costco so I’m not sure what they cost.  Here’s the information from the DIY Natural blog though:

THE COST SAVINGS WILL BE BETWEEN $4.09 – $3.57 PER TUBE!

Aside from cost, there are many other benefits of homemade products.  By making this toothpaste not only are we cutting costs by upwards of 300%, we also know the exact ingredients and count time spent as fun, educational, and useful for all involved!

My 11-year-old daughter used this toothpaste right after having made it and she says “I like it because it’s not gritty and it cleans my mouth really well.”  I also used it and agree on how well it cleans my mouth.  And, while the baking soda taste is present, it’s not stronger than I can bear.  If you decided to DIY your own toothpaste (or anything else you’ve seen on my blog) I’d love to know about it!

Take the T out of stick and you got this girl

I’ve slept MAYBE one hour in three days, I’be spent more time in the bathroom in the last week or two than I think I did with ALL of my pregnancies with morning sickness and extra pottying combined.  As of yet, I haven’t shipped any of the cartridges everyone bought.  I will update as soon as they go postal.  Thanks for understanding…and now back to my cot in the bathroom.  Might save some time and energy if I did pull sleep in there I’m tellin’ ya.

The time has come

for me to have theme days here on my blog.   The pages you see in the navigation bar on my blog aren’t actually pages.  They are added blogs.  The are lots of nice parts about this: you can follow any and all of them, they post to FB automatically when I post to them, and I have even MORE storage than ever before (WordPress offers EACH blog 3 GB’s of storage space per blog) and currently I have ummmm like 15 GB’s of storage space.  That should definitely keep me happily posting photos to my blogs for some time.  Anyway…so since I have so many blogs, I am finding it a little difficult to keep them all up…enter theme idea. This “schedule” is subject to change at any time, but may go something like this:

Sundays:  Praise Faithfule post

Mondays:  K Andrew Designs Stamp project (here at Faithfule Creations)

Tuesdays:  Live Faithfule post

Wednesdays:  Eat Faithfule post

Thursdays:  DIY Thursdays…Save Faithfule post

Friday:  Friday Freebie…may post to one or all of my blogs but you won’t know unless you’re subbed to them all lol!

Saturday:  Captured Faithfule post

Now….let’s talk about what each of these blogs are shall we.  You already know THIS blog, Faithfule Creations, features my papercraft creations.  Here’s what you can expect to find on the others…

Captured Faithfule – Photography blog…if I capture it in my lens and consider it worth sharing, it’ll go here (and likely not to FB anymore)

Eat Faithfule – Recipe blog…things we’ve put in our tummies and LOVED

Live Faithfule – Basically a day in my life…or a moment or a….this is basically my journal.

Praise Faithfule – Worship related stuff.  Talks/sermons I’ve liked, talks I’ve given, FHE lessons and activities, Visiting Teaching stuff.  All things gospel…ok not all but most.

Save Faithfule – Things I’ve DIYed.  Right now I’ve posted everything from homemade pure vanilla extract to DIY Febreeze.

 So…if you haven’t seen me post here in a while and wonder where I’m at, refer to this schedule and check out the other links above!

Sniffff MMMMMMMMMMMM

That was Ranga’s reaction to our DIY Febreeze.  Can I just digress here and tell you why this is such a huge deal for me….

I have a boy.  I love him to death, but he is the stinkiest smelliest thing EVER.  His feet just might be a bio-hazard. It doesn’t matter what we do, his feet are so stinky they could evacuate the largest convention center if the smell was piped through the ducts.  Even with BRAND NEW socks and brand new shoes, after about two days his feet are more odoriferous than a land-fill and I’ve smelled both.  We’ve tried baking soda, cornstarch, making him put deodorant on his feet, every type of shoe known to humanity, and more.  His feet can even make a flip-flop turn toxic.  In addition to this, he has an aversion to being clean.  He won’t take a shower or bath until I am dang near dragging him there myself.   He inherited his father’s sweat glands and can honestly work up a sweat playing video games inside in the winter with the heat off.  I’m telling you, Pepe Le Pew has NOTHING on my son.  In this house, we Febreeze EVERYTHING sometimes several times a day to ease some of this little boy’s stench.  It’s not uncommon for us go through bottles…yes s plural…of Febreeze a month.  In the year I’ve lived in my place, we’ve gone through at least 5 actually spray bottles of the stuff AND 3 of the huge refill bottles because I would even pour it into my wash when using manufactured laundry soap.  Thankfully my DIY laundry soap has eliminated having to do that.  That stuff is SOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO expensive but I can’t sit on my couch and have my stomach turn all the time either so what’s a girl to do?

One bottle of Febreeze costs $4.97 at Wal-Mart.  Somewhere I found out you could take one cup of your favorite fabric softener and pour it into a spray bottle (I used my febreeze bottle since it was almost empty anyway).

Here’s what you need:

1 cup of your favorite fabric softener

1 old spray bottle

Water

Place your 1 cup of fabric softener in your bottle and fill with water.  Shake to mix and spray away.  My daughter sprayed our couch before school this morning and now, two hours later, the couch still smells like Ocean Breeze and not stinky boy.  My DIY fabric softener costs 2 cents an ounce so my bottle of Febreeze costs me 16 cents a bottle.  Let’s say I ONLY used 5 bottles of Febreeze a month…here’s the savings:

5 DIY Febreeze bottles = .80 (yes you are reading this correctly…EIGHTY cents) vs 5 store-bought bottles of Febreeze =  $24.85

I think you already know what the House of Faith will be doing!!!!