Monday, January 21, 2019

Simply Earth Subscription Box (Giveaway/Review)

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Do you enjoy using essential oils in simple DIY projects to create homemade natural alternatives to commercial products?  I do, and I have a modest collection of oils and books of ideas to work with, but often I never get around to doing half of what I'd like, due to missing one vital item or another.

Simply Earth is a monthly subscription box that is delivered to you for $39.00 a month that makes it easy to build your oil collection and provides six projects a month with necessary tools and four essential oils.

Simply Earth Bonus Box
Each month tends toward a seasonal theme, making the whole thing a lovely way to learn a few techniques with the help of just a few pieces of equipment you are sure to have on hand.  Many of the projects are quick and simple enough to do with children.

When you first sign up for the subscription, along with the current month's Recipe Box, you will receive their Bonus Box that contains six amber vials, six roller ball bottles, a small jar, solid coconut oil, liquid coconut oil, almond oil, and beeswax pellets.

These supplies are used often in each month's recipe collections, and a new Bonus Box is delivered every six months as long as you have a subscription.

I received the January Box along with the Bonus Box for review and I was intrigued as I explored the contents after opening it.

The January theme was body and skin care - perfect for these winter months that can make us so dry!

The monthly recipe box came neatly packaged with four essential oils, a packet of multicolor pastel tapioca beads, a silicon square mold, two lip balm tubes, six recipe cards and a sheet of stickers for labeling the completed projects.

The four essential oils for January are Bergamot, Myrrh, Ravensara, and a blend called Farewell Scars made up of Lemon, Lavender, Rosemary, Myrrh, and Helichrysum.

I was most curious about the Ravensara as I had no previous experience with it.   It is touted as an oil that helps with seasonal illnesses and has a calming effect that increases confidence.  The scent was highly reminiscent of anise, so it was no surprise to discover its botanical name is Ravensara anisata. I find the scent to be very pleasant and was pleased to find that it is often used during cold season much the way eucalyptus would, to clear stuffy heads.

The first and simplest project was a confidence diffuser blend that used bergamot and ravensara.  I added it to a tea candle style infuser and set about to work through the other projects.

Both the Skin Healing Booster Roll On for minor injuries and scar care, and the delightful Skin Renewal Sugar Scrub were quick to make and would be easy for children to make as gifts with adult supervision.

The Calming and Uplifting Body Butter required a mixer to whip the ingredients together, but otherwise was also very simple to put togethe, and the result was sublime - I have so enjoyed using this and will definitely be making up another batch when it's gone.

The last two projects - the Lip Rejuvenating Lip Balm and Relaxing Textured Massage Bar  (which is where the tapioca beads come in) both required melting wax and coconut oil over a double boiler or similar alternative.   I used a glass measuring cup so I'd have an easy way to pour the contents into the lip balm tubes and square mold - I found that hooking the handle over the edge of the pot and suspending it in boiling water was the easiest way to keep the handle available to pick up with a potholder when it was time.

As a tip - remember not to use hot water to remelt the remains of wax on your tools with hot running water and let it go down the sink!  It'll reharden in your pipes.  Instead, wait until it is nearly cool but still soft and wipe out thoroughly with a paper towel before washing.

Both of these projects worked out just as described - of the two, I like the massage bar best. The lip balm is not quite creamy enough for my winter-dry lips to use without pulling at them.

All in all, I found this subscription box to be a lot of fun, and a great value - the four oils included go for a total of $64.96 on the website - that, along with several projects and supplies to get familiar with using them make the $39 a month cost a real bargain.  Add to that the free $40 Bonus Box that arrives the first month of your subscription and you will be all set for several months of fun and a collection of homemade natural products to enjoy.

If you've ever wanted to try out a few DIY techniques using essential oils or to grow your essential oil pantry, Simply Earth may be the perfect subscription box for you.

The February Box will be all about making your own cosmetics!

If you subscribe following using the code RCHFREE you will receive a free $20 gift card with your first subscription box and bonus box! You can use the gift card for individual purchases on Simply Earth or the next box.

Simply Earth is also allowing us to host a giveaway for the January Box plus Bonus Box - read on to see how you can enter to win!

Simply Earth
Simply Earth on Facebook
Simply Earth on Twitter
Simply Earth on YouTube
Simply Earth on Pinterest
Simply Earth on Instagram

One winner in the US will win a January Simply Earth Subscription Box plus Bonus Box (value $79.00).

This Giveaway ends at just before midnight ET February 4, 2019.

To enter the giveaway, please leave a comment in this entry as instructed by the Giveaway Tools Entry Form below. This will open up additional optional entries to increase your odds of winning. (If you don't leave a comment, any additional entries will be void.)

The winner will be notified by email 24 to 48 hours after the end of the giveaway by email. In order to claim the giveaway prize, the winner will need to respond within 24 hours of notification, or an alternate winner will be selected.
 Good luck!

Tuesday, January 15, 2019

Party in Your PJs! #241


Happy Tuesday!  Welcome to the Party in Your PJs Link Party, where your posts will be seen on three different blogs each week.

I'm so glad to be back! We took a couple weeks off for the holidays and then (briefly) tried the updated inLinkz. It did not go well at all. There are many things I do not love about that version, either as a back end user or as a front end user linking up to my favorite parties!  Thank goodness, we went back to the older version and will stay with it at least until they sort out their beta testing.

  Meet the Co-Hosts

Nina @ Grandma Ideas 

Lynda @ Reviews, Chews & How-Tos 

Lynda's Features!

If there is one steady truth in the world (or at least here in the DC area, it's that the week the kids go back to school, there WILL be a snowstorm that keeps them all out of school.  So this week, I'm posting some kid activities for those bonus snow days.

 Make sure you head over to the other members of Party in Your PJs
 to see their features - we each pick our own!

All links are pinned to a Party can follow the board on Pinterest...feel free to follow the board, there is lots of inspiration to be found there.

Ok...let's party!

Rules -Link to post, not your home page
-Link to something YOU made, wrote or thought
-No Etsy or Business Pages
-Link Parties, Roundups and Giveaways welcome
- Don't Link and Run! Please visit other links, make friends, learn something new, leave a comment.

Monday, January 14, 2019

Baked Turkey Tetrazzini #BakingBloggers


This month, I am joining several other bloggers at Baking Bloggers to share a Baked Pasta dish.

When I was a kid, my mom would make tetrazzini whenever we had leftover poultry or ham after a holiday feast.  The pasta would vary from spaghetti noodles to flat egg noodles, and the sauce was bolstered by condensed cream of something soups.

Those cans are the biggest reason why I rarely thought of it as an adult cooking to my own case, but of course they are not necessary!  The sauce for this version calls for broth and cream, and plenty of cheese to make it just right for cold winter nights.

Baked Turkey Tetrazzini
Serves 6-8
Preheat oven to 400F.

12 oz. linguine, snapped in half and cooked to al dente

6 T. butter
1 onion, minced
3 garlic cloves, finely minced
8 oz. sliced mushrooms
1/4 cup flour
1 cup chicken or turkey broth
1 cup whole milk
1 cup heavy cream
1/2 cup white wine
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. pepper
1 tsp. thyme
1/4 tsp. nutmeg
1 lb.  leftover cooked turkey, chopped
1 bag frozen peas
handful fresh parsley, chopped
1 cup grated Parmesan
2 cups shredded Mozzarella

Prepare linguine according to package instructions, taking care not  to overcook.

Have a large bowl on hand and put the shredded poultry there.

Melt 3 T. butter in a large skillet.  Add onion and cook until softened.  Add garlic, cooking until fragrant (be careful not to scorch).  Add mushrooms, salt, pepper and thyme and continue to saute until the mushrooms are softened and cooked.

Remove onion and mushroom mixture to the bowl of turkey and set aside.

Add wine to the pan and scrap to get any cooked bits loosened from the bottom. Simmer until nearly evaporated.

Add 3 T. butter to pan and melt at medium low.  Add flour and cook, stirring, for two minutes.   Add milk, cream, broth and nutmeg and raise heat to boil. Cook, stirring, until the sauce begins to thicken, about 10 minutes.

Cook peas in microwave.

Add the turkey and mushroom mixture, the peas and the pasta in the pan, and stir in the Parmesan cheese, mixing to combine all and thoroughly coating the pasta with sauce.

Turn this mixture into a greased baking dish.  Top with shredded mozzarella . Bake, uncovered, at 400F for 30-40 minutes.

Let settle for about 10 minutes after you remove this from the oven.

Check out these other delicious baked pasta dishes!

Baking Bloggers

Baked Pasta