Friday, my cousin B came to hang out with me for the day. We watched Bolt, had lunch, walked the dogs to the park, colored eggs (which he loved!), played The Game of Life, and went to the Ram for dinner.

Saturday was full of lots of yard work and other chores. We watched Bo again, as my sister Bee and her husband Tyler were busy moving. I ended the long day with a glass of wine and watched this movie, Robot and Frank, which I now highly recommend:

Today, Easter, we made a yummy breakfast (a modified version of this). We returned Bo to Bee and Tyler, after an attempted puppy photo shoot, at their lovely new home. Will also worked on his car for a bit, installing some new lights onto his brush guard. I pretended to help.

We were wanting to go out to Leslie Gulch today but you can only fit so much into a weekend; we'll have to wait until next Sunday. How was your weekend?

DIY Puppy Bow Ties

I was at Target a while ago, browsing the pet section, and they had some adorable bow ties for dogs. Pippin is a good sport and doesn't mind wearing clothes and things, and I knew he would look adorable with a bow tie. I knew Scout would be a handsome fellow with one, too, but he's not the best sport :) And as we all know, bow ties are cool (Dr. Who reference, anyone?)! Instead of buying, I figured I could just make them some. They are super quick and easy to make, especially if you already know how to make a bow, but I'll walk you through the steps:

You'll Need: Some fabric of your choice, scissors, a needle and embroidery thread, a pup with a collar.
  1. Choose your fabric, a sturdy cotton works best in my opinion. You don't need much so you can use some scraps if you have them lying around.
  2. Cut out a rectangle, size will vary depending on the size of your dog. Also, keep in mind that you'll be folding it in thirds. I wanted my bow tie to appear a bit over-sized, so I just held my fabric up to Pippin and eyeballed a size that looked good.
  3. Fold your rectangle in thirds, lengthwise.
  4. Fold it again, in the other direction, overlapping the ends in the middle.
  5. To create your bow shape, pinch the folded fabric together. you'll want to add some stitches through the center to make sure the bow shape will stay in place.
  6. Next, create the center "knot" of the bow tie using a long thin piece of fabric. 
  7. Fold this piece in thirds as well to make sure it is nice and sturdy.
  8. Create a loop with this piece. Wrap the long piece around the bow you've created to see how big your loop should be.You'll want to leave a little extra room to be able to slip your dog's collar through.
  9. Once you've measured the size of your loop, stitch it up and cut of the excess. Then flip it right side out so the seam is on the inside of the loop.
  10. Slip the loop back around the bow and your bow-tie is done!

Simply slide your dog's collar through the back of the loop on the new bow-tie and then get it on your pup! Admire how dapper and cute he looks.

Spring Essentials $25 & Under

My Spring wishlist, everything $25.00 & Under:

The best part about spring-time? The clothes of course! I love dressing flirty and feminine so all the pastels, all the floral, all the pretty dresses and skirts have me excited. I would love to have an eyelet dress. And to get a lighter, spring colored cardigan to go with everything. I'm also getting an iPhone soon (eee!) so, I've been oogling over cute cases. What's on your Spring wishlist? Stay thirfty!

1. Mixed-Eyelet Dress $25.00 / 2. A Pastel a Day Earrings Set $14.99 / 3. 3/4 Sleeve V-Neck Colorblock Cardigan $15.00 / 4. High-Low Pleated Skirt $22.80 / 5. Katelyn Bow Wallet $22.99 / 6. Floral iPhone 4 & 4S Case $24.00 / 7. Ombre Stripe U-neck T $19.99 / 8. Falk Thong Sandal Multicolor $19.99

Hiking: Hulls Gulch

Despite the fact that it has been pretty chilly, on Sunday we decided to get out again and go hike around Hulls Gulch. If this arctic wind could slow down a bit, the weather here would be a hell of a lot more spring like. I enjoyed the hike just the same, and so many other people had the same idea as Will and me. We danced around quite a few other hikers and dogs and bikers, me and my boys. And look how happy they are; they stuck there heads out the window the whole way home.

Natural Beauty: Coconut Oil

A first in a series where I share natural ingredients that I have found to work remarkably for beauty purposes, far better than any expensive concoction you can buy.

Coconut Oil is a great for a lot of reasons. It is said to be anti-fungal, antibacterial, antimicrobial, antioxidant, antiviral, as well as having soothing properties (this can be attributed to the presence of caprylic acid, capric acid, lauric acid, etc. found in the oil).  And you can use it for everything! I keep a jar of Coconut Oil on my bathroom counter with a little spoon tied to the lid for easy scooping, and I never bother putting it away in a cupboard because I use it so often.

Here are my top Coconut Oil uses

As a face-wash 

I have had the most problematic skin, let me tell you. I'm about as sensitive as you can get in the skin department, and my skin likes to overreact to the smallest things. So when I had problems with acne as a teenager, everything I tried only made the problem worse. That's because most topical acne treatments are full of some real nasty, harsh chemicals. Salicylic acid, benzoyl peroxide, they all even sound awful. And they ate at my skin. Now that acne isn't much of an issue for me, I've finally found something that my skin, and all skin loves. That's how life works, though, right?

Because it is gentle, but also antibacterial, Coconut Oil is great at fighting acne. And yes, oil is great for cleaning your skin. When you use a store-bought cleanser or soap on your face, it strips your skin of it's natural oils. When you clean with oil, all that junk in your pores will be absorbed by the oil, while letting you hang on to your natural skin-produced oils that are so so so good. No more dry skin! And because you are no longer stripping your skin oils, you won't over-produce oil to compensate. No more oily skin!

Since I've been using Coconut Oil, my skin has been very happy. It is no longer dull, I have a nice natural glow and evened out skin tone. My redness and irritation have reduced drastically. And I rarely ever have to use a moisturizer anymore. Coconut Oil is also great at removing makeup, especially stubborn eye makeup (water proof mascara anyone?).  Most days I wash my face by simply rubbing a nickel-sized amount of Coconut Oil all over my skin and then rinsing it off. On days when I need a little exfoliating, about twice a week, I do the following:

When exfoliating, I like to begin with clean skin; usually I'll do this right out of the shower, but if I have any makeup on or just worked out, I do rinse it with some coconut oil and water first. Other wise, begin with dry skin. Mix equal parts baking soda and Coconut Oil together in you palm. I do a quarter-size amount of each, which gives me enough mixture to exfoliate my face, neck, and chest. Once you mix the two together, the coconut oil will melt from the temperature of your hand, so work cautiously and gently rub the mixture all over your skin in a soft circular motion for a few minutes (rub it on your lips too! they'll get so nice and smooth). Once you're done, simply rinse of with warm water really well and pat dry with a towel. You want to make sure you rinse thoroughly, if any baking soda stays on your face, it could dry out your skin. Your skin should feel a little oily, but don't worry, your skin will quickly drink it up, and it will love it!

As a deep condition for hair

My other favorite way to use this great stuff is in my hair. I'll take a big old glop of it and work it all the way through my hair, paying special attention to the roots. I personally don't like putting it right on my scalp, because I don't use shampoo (more on that later) it would stay a little too oily for my liking. But if you do wash your hair, go for it! It is great for your scalp, especially if you ever get a dry, itchy scalp- it will be very soothing. It's great at kicking dandruff's ass too! For a deep conditioning mask, leave coconut oil on for at least 30 minutes (I tend to go for an hour or even more) and then shower as normal. Oh how my dyed ends thank me.

Other things I use Coconut Oil for
  • As my saving grace against dry cracked skin in the winter. Especially my hands. It's my favorite because my skin soaks it up pretty fast. Rub a bit on your skin just like you would body butter. Just not too much! A little goes a long way.
  • As a lip balm
  • A a defrizzer/detangler for my hair. Put a tiny bit on the tips of your fingers and smooth that hair out!
  • The ONLY THING that can tame my dry cracked heals, with the help of one of those foot cheese grater looking things
  • As  body scrub (mixed with sugar)
  • As an eye makeup remover
  • As a "primer" under my "makeup" when I wear some
  • And of course, you can eat it/cook with it! Silly.
I recommend this list for more ideas of how to get all of the wonderful benefits from Coconut Oil. Next, I want to try making my own deodorant from it!

Spring Dreaming

Harmonious Arrangement Dress/Flowerleaf Dress/Paint By Numbers Sundress/Forever 70’s Floral Dress

Waking up to fresh snow this morning has put me in the mood for some warmer weather. I just want to be able to go camping and spend time by the river and wear sun dresses and sandals and not freeze my butt off. I'm ready for floral everything, especially floral dresses, and if I had the cash to spare I'd be adding a few of these lovelies to my wardrobe. I suppose daydreaming about camping will be good enough for now. What are you looking forward to wearing with warmer weather?

Recycled Magazine Easter Baskets

Or An Introduction Into Magazine Containers

Now, I'm not one to get too festive for Easter (or any holiday besides Christmas), but my mom was getting ready to have a girl's craft weekend with some friends and she wanted to take a seasonal goodie to share. I had created a little catch-all bowl a while back out of magazines, to hold earrings and bobby pins and the like, and she wanted to know how it was done. I suggested I show her how but that we make them into Easter baskets, and thus this DIY was born.

What you'll need:
  • old magazines
  • scissors
  • hot glue gun

1. Start by ripping out a bunch of pages from your old magazine(s). To give you an idea, I used one thick magazine to create these 6 mini baskets, with lots of pages still left to spare.  You'll want to fold the pages long ways, multiple times, as many times as you can until they are thin, strong strips (about 1/4 in wide).
2. Once you've gotten a bit folded you can start with the base of the basket. You'll want to roll the first piece up nice and tight to make a spiral.
3. Hot glue in place a little bit at a time as you go, creating a nice spiral. Leave a little tab at the end of the piece unglued, you'll see why below!

4. When I add a new piece on, I prefer to interlock the strips. This will make your basket more seamless and sturdy. You can then continue gluing and wrapping.
5. Continue adding more pieces until you've reached your desired base circumference. For the mini baskets I used 4 to 6 strips for the base (This is also a good time to flatten the base out a bit, by gently pushing the bottom against the flat surface you are working on, to ensure your basket will sit level). Then add on a new strip as normal, interlocking the two, but instead of bringing the new strip even with the base, slightly start to spiral upwards.
6. You want to make sure that you continue upward SLOWLY and spiral outward, if not you may end up just creating a cylinder, not a basket shape. Add a new piece or two, and then run your thumbs around the inside of the basket to ensure your are getting the rounded shape you want. This part is a little tricky, but once you add a few layers you'll get the hang of it. Continue until your basket is as tall as you like (it will look really cool on the inside)!
7. To add a handle, take a nice folded strip and glue it shut. I would glue the middle fold and hold it together and then do a bit of glue along the edge to ensure it stays put. Gluing will make you strip stiff, so run it along the edge of your table, pulling downward at an angle, creating a nice curved shape. Then decide where you want to secure the handle.
8. Secure both sides of the handle to your basket using hot glue. If it is longer than you would like, simply trim the piece down. I also like to add one more strip layer around the entire basket over the handle to make sure it is really secure and to make it more seamless. And you're done!

Fill your basket with some cute fabric eggs (maybe mini egges?) or candy or make a bunch for decoration. Of course, these are mini baskets. but I think they are really adorable. And once you learn the technique, you could make a large basket if you so desire, or any kind of container, really!

Hiking: Jump Creek

We've been having some really lovely weather here in Boise. I'm one of those weird people who actually prefers the cold a bit. Yes, winter is my favorite season. Yes, I hate summer and the heat and allergies and sunburns and all those things. But I must admit this time of year is always exciting; everything starting over. And it's sure pleasant to get those chilled winter bones heated up. Will and I were dog sitting my sister's dog Bo (he's the white pup) and we felt we just had to get out and take advantage of the nice weather. So Saturday we headed west to Jump Creek and hiked around the canyon. The view of the valley up there is breathtaking. It was our first real outing this year, it's hard to get out and do stuff like this when it's winter butt cold. The dogs were so happy to get some fresh air (just look at that face on Pippin) and so was I. And we got down the canyon just in time; a nice rain started just as we got in the car. We'll have to go back soon when the falls get a little fuller.

Let's Jump In

I've contemplated the idea of starting this blog for ages, but lately my mind has been swarming and screaming with the concept. Now seems like the perfect time for Oh Whimsical Me, so we will hit the ground running; I have quite a few things planned and it would be great if you'd like to stick around to see what they are. I have a feeling things will be happening very quickly around here.