Tips for a Chemical-Free Clean Home

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Hey there Mine for the Making readers! Bernice here from The Oily Bee, and I want to share something pretty awesome with you. I’m all about cleaning out the chemicals in your home. A healthy home=healthy life. So today I’m going to share tips for a chemical-free, clean home.

Do me a HUGE favor. Download this free app. It’s called Think Dirty. Its FREE, and opens up your eyes! Ever wonder what exactly is in the everyday products you use? From shampoo, to dish soap, to your deodorant! Holy smokes, it’s actually kind of, well, really crazy. Even most of your “all natural” products contain high levels of toxins. So what in the world do we do??

It feels like a losing battle sometimes when we have companies feeding us lies in order to sell a product. Well I have some simple solutions! It doesn’t take much to start changing out some of the products you are using in your home I’m going to give you my ultimate favorite product I use in my home, that does not require you to spend an arm and a leg! Are you ready?

My favorite cleaner in the world… Theives cleaner and I get mine from Young Living.   

For years I have been using other cleaning products, and even attempted to use the “natural” labeled cleaners. This is where the app came in handy- Think Dirty rates products from 1-10. 1 being non-toxic, and 10 being toxic. Many of the natural products showed as being 8 or 9, so I decided that I needed to find something out there that would replace my original household cleaner, but also able to clean the germs. Try it out on your cleaners at home!

Thieves cleaner has been in our home for over 2 years now. I use it for ALL of my surfaces. Mopping the floors, cleaning my granite counters, stainless steal appliances, mirrors, and I use it in my bathrooms. #winning! One, safe cleaner for all of that! 

It is a 14.4 fl oz bottle, and one bottle of Thieves cleaner has last me a little over a year. Why and how does it last so long? Well, it’s because it is so concentrated and a little goes a long, LONG way. Now, how do I mix it? It’s super simple. The recommended ratios are also posted on the bottle, but what I do is get a spray bottle, fill it to about 32 oz of distilled water, and then add your capful size of Thieves cleaner! There ya go! Throw out that old cleaner, because this one is about to rock your socks off!!

Some questions you might be asking yourself…is it kid safe? pet safe? safe to use when pregnant? YES to all! I have a pup, I have a 3 year old boy, and I’m pregnant with baby number 2. I’ve never felt so safe and good about using this cleaner around my home.

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It’s the easiest and most effective household cleaner I have ever used. I can clean my home safely and efficiently. Having that control over what you use in your home is a beautiful feeling!

Thank you all for stopping by! I look forward to sharing more healthy living tips with you.

Bernice Parker, The Oily Bee

Follow me on Instagram for more healthy tips!

Arizona: HGTV Smart Home Tour

A few weeks ago, I had the privilege of going on a HGTV Smart Home Tour here in Scottsdale, Arizona. As you can imagine, the home was absolutely gorgeous from the outside in, no detail missed, and a ton of Smart amenities to make living even more comfortable. (Scroll to the end for the video!)

I love the grey exterior of this desert home… especially in a sea of browns and tans. The outside landscaping stayed true to Arizona, with pops of yellow and orange florals. 

When you enter the home, you notice the vaulted ceilings, open floor plan, and gorgeous lighting pouring in through the windows and skylights. Lots of open space, but also lots of great seating areas to relax, eat, play, or work. Take a look at the detail on the fireplace and the one-of-a-kind copper lighting fixture. Absolutely amazing.


Don’t forget the awesome wine bar!! That’s right… you thought it couldn’t get any more perfect and it just did. It’s even placed between the living room and the backyard, that way you can access it from the inside or the outside easily.  

The master suite is roomy yet cozy. I loved the grey tones with the splashes of white and creams. The master bathroom is one of my favorite rooms in the house. Bright, airy, and gigantic. The white subway tiles from floor to ceiling, the walk in shower, and the tub were only a fraction of why I fell in love and never wanted to leave. (See the video at the end of this post for full bathroom reveal.) Plus, the mater bathroom feeds right into the amazing walk-in master closet. Tons of storage and shelving plus more of that natural light coming in through the windows and skylights. 

With the matte black cabinets, Smart appliances, beautiful copper lighting fixtures, and amazing copper subway tile backsplash, there’s no doubt the kitchen was my favorite room in the entire house. 

My heart flip-flopped over the walk in pantry. I don’t even know if the word ‘pantry’ does it justice. There’s that natural lighting again, which gives me all the heart eyes. And take a look at that flooring!

The bright, fun colors in the dining room really pull you in. I could see myself hosting lots of dinner parties or even having work meetings with colleagues in this room. 

And there’s even a private, desert oasis tucked away in the backyard. The views are gorgeous, lots of great seating, and the pool looked refreshing enough to jump right in. It’s the perfect place for barbecues, family parties, and quiet, romantic nights at home. I could see myself spending most of my time out here!

And as you know, this lovely home is a #HGTVSmartHome, meaning this house is all Smart operated. Everything from door locks, music, TVs, kitchen appliances, lighting, heat/AC, outlets, security system, blinds, and so much more! Talk about using technology to your advantage. 


I was also lucky enough to meet the designer behind the entire Smart Home, Tiffany Brooks.  Although she is from Chicago, Tiffany did a ton of research on Arizona and really incorporated so much of what I love about my state into the decor of this home. From all of the copper touches throughout (hello kitchen backsplash!!) and the desert artwork hung on the walls, to the woven baskets and Aztec patterns, this home whispers ‘Arizona living’ in such a classy, elegant way.

Tiffany was so friendly and shared her design and decor inspiration with me as well as some of her tips and secrets (how fun!). And after I told Tiffany that we are in the process of building our next home ourselves, she hugged me and shared her two top tips in designing and building a home yourself. 

  1. Design a wine bar FIRST… then build it because you’ll need it.
  2. Never settle. Be sure you are absolutely in love with it before you install it, paint it, commit to it. 

Here’s my video of the Scottsdale #HGTVSmartHome Tour with Tiffany… check it out for even more details and a real inside peek at the home!


Amazing job to Tiffany and the entire HGTV Smart Home team! Thank you so much for the invite!

Be sure to check your local listings  for when the HGTV Smart Home Tour airs! You won’t want to miss it, that I can promise you.  

Repurposed Ideas for the Kitchen

Hello, friends! It’s a new month so it’s time for a new topic for our Craft Tips series! 
For February, we are focusing on upcycle/repurposing projects. Each week we will take a look at these types of projects in different areas of the home.

Repurpose and/or upcycle items to use in the kitchen!
This week I am focusing on some really fun upcycle and repurposing projects for the KITCHEN! Some of these are actual kitchen items used in interesting ways, but I also found a few items that have nothing to do with the kitchen and people found a way to find a use for them and incorporate them into their space.

Repurpose and/or upcycle items to use in the kitchen!
Vintage Cheese Grater Organizer from Homeroad

Repurpose and/or upcycle items to use in the kitchen!
Antique Dresser Kitchen Island from Heir and Space

Repurpose and/or upcycle items to use in the kitchen!
Foot Board Tea Cup Holder from Capitulo Dos

Repurpose and/or upcycle items to use in the kitchen!
Teacup Pendant Lamp Shades from Flamingo Toes

Repurpose and/or upcycle items to use in the kitchen!
Shutter Island from Beyond the Picket Fence

Repurpose and/or upcycle items to use in the kitchen!
Enamel Mug Organizer from Homeroad

Repurpose and/or upcycle items to use in the kitchen!
Rolling Pin Towel Holder at Hometalk

Repurpose and/or upcycle items to use in the kitchen!
Silverware Handles from Notes from the Nest

Repurpose and/or upcycle items to use in the kitchen!
Old Rake Utensil Holder from The Gracious Wife

Repurpose and/or upcycle items to use in the kitchen!
Globe Stand Paper Towel Holder from Lovely Etc.

Repurpose and/or upcycle items to use in the kitchen!
Silverware Starburst Mirror from Flamingo Toes


Aren’t these ideas so fun and unique? I wish I had an eye for these types of upcycled projects!

Stay tuned for more upcycle/repurpose ideas next week!


Your hostesses,
siggie Signature signature allison
The Scrap Shoppe | Flamingo Toes | Mine for the Making | A Glimpse Inside

Tips: Shop Your Home for Seasonal Decor

Hello everyone! 
 Are you ready for the last week of Must Have Craft Tips & More: Fall and Halloween Decorating Tips? 
If you have missed the last few weeks, here is Tip 1, Tip 2, and Tip 3.
It’s Allison here, back with some tips on how to decorate your home for the holiday season by just shopping your home.
 You don’t always have to go out and buy a ton of items to decorate for seasonal or holiday decorating. Just shop your home, inside and out, instead! 

Walk around your home and you can turn many items into holiday decor. 

Photo via:  Country Living
Do you have some old sweaters? How about using them to cover pillows to cozy up the couch or a bench?
This year I decorated my fall mantle with all sorts of items from around my house.
The small chalkboard and wooden basket were in my craft room, along with the pumpkin and gourds that were stashed away in my closet. I had the arrow for a few months and then created the wreath out of an old wreath form and all the supplies were already in my craft stash.
And for all the hydrangea blooms, I just went out into my garden with some clippers and then boom, a pretty natural mantle that I didn’t spend any money on.
Photo via:  Country Living
Do you have pillow and throws that are in fall colors in another room or tucked away in your house some where?
Pull them out and place them in the space you want to decorate.
Fall branches in a large vase or jar are also perfect free ways to decorate.
Photo Via:  Country Living
Fall boots make are a special addition to an outdoor space or mudroom.
Branches are also a great way to add a rustic touch.
Photo via:  Country Living
I feel like this room says fall without screaming it.
The pillows and throws are the perfect fall colors.
If you have curtains in another room and they would work in the room you are decorating, why not switch those out for the time being to bring the whole look together.
Vases, antlers, and cotton bring the mantle together and change out art to something that has a more fall theme to it as well.
Photo via:  HGTV
Gather old books, vases, jars, and other vintage items you have around your house and make a vignette with them.
The added pumpkins and flowers tie it all together beautifully.
Photo Via:  Bob Villa
Outside is a fantastic way to get items to decorate.
Place some fall leaves inside beautiful frames and berries, branches, and leaves in a vase that you already own and you can an easy, striking mantle.
This was my fall mantle from a few years ago. I shopped my house and used this old window that we had for a few years as a focal point on the mantle.
I took candle sticks, candles, and vases from other areas of my house and used them in my display.Some times you just need to go digging through your house and you never know what you will find.
Here are some items that can easily be used and switched around for decorating.
1.) Candles and candle sticks
2.) Pillows
3.) Throws
4.) Vases
5.) Plates, Platters
6.) Books
7.) Flowers
8.) Branches
9.) Leaves and Berries
10.) Clothing items (boots, sweaters, scarves)
11.) Artwork
12.) Wreaths

Thanks for joining us for another month of tips.

Be sure to join us next month when we begin a whole new set of tips.

Visit all the hostesses:
Bev- Flamingo Toes
Michele- The Scrap Shoppe
Kara- Mine for the Making
Allison- A Glimpse Inside



Tips: Using 3M Hooks in Home Decor

Hello, friends! It’s Friday AND a new month so that means it’s time for a new topic for Must Have Craft Tips & More!

Must Have Craft Tips & More!
Every Friday my friends (Bev at Flamingo Toes, Kara at Mine for the Making, and Allison at A Glimpse Inside) and I (Michele at The Scrap Shoppe) bring you a brand new craft tip pertaining to a specific topic of the month. This month’s topic is Home Decor! That’s a pretty broad topic so there’s no telling what you will see.

Must Have Craft Tips: Use 3M Command Hooks to hang awkard home decor items!
I’m going to be focusing on 3M Command Hooks and how you can use them to covertly hang your home decor items. They come in such a variety of sizes and colors that you can use them just about anywhere in your home! I love them especially for my mantel as I am about to show you.

Must Have Craft Tips: Use 3M Command Hooks to hang awkard home decor items! As I said, the mantel is my favorite place to sneak in some 3M hooks. I place them right on top of each end of my mantel to hang garland. I use the large white ones that can actually pop off of the adhesive tab if you want them to. This is perfect for when I don’t have a big garland hanging. The tab is virtually invisible without the hook, as you can see.

Must Have Craft Tips: Use 3M Command Hooks to hang awkward home decor items!
The hooks are perfect for hanging bulky garland! I place the hooks on each end and one in the middle to get the look above.

I also use the clear hooks to hang our Christmas stockings. They get hidden behind the garland if hung from stocking holders dangling from the top of the mantel so I started hanging them right on the face of the fireplace. I think it looks a lot better!

Must Have Craft Tips: Use 3M Command Hooks to hang awkard home decor items! Here are a few other clever ways to use 3M hooks for your holiday decorating.

Clockwise from the top left: Hanging garland from the stairs from Clean & Scentsible | Hanging ornament garland on the front of the mantel from Eclectically Vintage | Hanging garland from underside of mantel from Home Depot | Hanging live branches on the mantel from Pro Flowers

Must Have Craft Tips: Use 3M Command Hooks to hang awkard home decor items! And here are some pretty ingenius ideas for subtly using 3M hooks in other areas of your home decor. I particular love the upside down hook for hanging wreaths. That’s so smart for a closet or cabinet!

From left to right: Mason jar window treatment from It All Started with Paint | Hanging curtains from The Happier Homemaker | Hanging a wreath from Pretty Dubs | Hanging banners from doorways from Fynes Designs

Must Have Craft Tips & More!
Don’t miss the rest of our home decor tips every Friday in August!


MFTM Builds a House

Hello there Makers! I am so excited to finally share what’s been keeping me busy over here behind the scenes at Mine for the Making! We sold our home a few months ago, bought an RV, consolidated our debt, simplified our living, and bought our own piece of earth. That’s right… We are officially land owners and we couldn’t be more thrilled. And now that we have our glorious acre and a quarter, we are ready to share some of our BIG plans with you, our awesome readers. We are about to take this blog to a whole new level. If you’ve followed along for awhile, you know I share home decor, DIY projects, crafts, recipes, travel, and mom adventures. Now we are about to take you on a new kind of journey as MFTM Builds a House!


We are going from city living to ranch life. From houses right next door to one another to homes and barns on an acre or more. City living to county living. Horses and farm animals all around. We are very, very excited for this adventure (which also happens to be my one little word for 2016) and we can’t wait to share it all with you.


You are seeing it firsthand, in the very beginning stages. Now, we are measuring out the property, laying out where everything will go, designing the house with an architect, and getting information about permits. Our plan is to build our new home ourselves, showing you the process along the way. The cool part is that we aren’t building an ordinary house. We are going to show you alternative and eco-friendly housing at it’s finest. Tips, tricks, how-tos, failures and accomplishments… all of it all along the way.


I will be sharing a ton as we go on social media (Instagram, Facebook, Twitter) as well as videos (Periscope and YouTube)… you can literally come on this adventure with us! Stay tuned for all of our plans and watch our dreams become reality as MFTM Builds a House!

DIY Master Bathroom Update

Good morning, makers! I hope you had a great weekend. I’m excited to start off this week with my DIY Master Bathroom Update. It has been a long time coming… like almost 6 years… but we finally finished it! 

master bathroom update1

Let me show you some of the before and demo pictures…

master bathroom update2

We took out the old tile floor and installed slate flooring (Floor and Decor). We painted the walls grey (Behr paint) and the ceiling white and installed cute His and Hers towel hooks (Hobby Lobby). We installed new baseboards and painted those white as well. We spray painted the original light fixture to hide the chrome and gold finishing on it (Rustoleum). We also installed a rustic fence slat wall behind the toilet…and it’s my favorite part of the whole update (tutorial coming soon). I bought new grey towels and a plain white shower curtain (Walmart). I painted a trio of jars with Chalky Finish paint (DecoArt) to hold our Q-tips, cotton balls, and toothbrushes. 

master bathroom update3

master bathroom update5


master bathroom update4


master bathroom update7

master bathroom update6


master bathroom update8

Don’t you just love it?? I sure do. The things we did to update our bathroom weren’t drastic… they were relatively simple DIY updates that brightened the bathroom and made it more eye appealing. The whole update cost us less than $175. It’s beyond me why the master bedroom and bathroom are always the last rooms to update, but I am so glad they are done! 

Have you updated your bathrooms? 

Kitchen Reveal: Easy Kitchen Update

Hello friends! I am so excited to share our Kitchen Reveal with you! It has been a long time coming and I’m very pleased with the turn out. What do y’all think?

kitchen reveal9

Nice and bright and natural, right? I love it. I’m sure you’d like to see the BEFORE of the kitchen so that you can really see the difference…

kitchen reveal1

Oh. Em. Gee. Now this isn’t the before before. When we moved into this house, the kitchen had yellow-y cabinets, stained yellowed counter tops, linoleum for flooring, no backsplash, no hardware on the cabinets, etc. So we started the updating when we moved in 6 years ago…but life happened and it just never got finished (notice the unfinished backsplash to the right?). Now that we are selling our home, we have been plugging away at our punch list. 

First we removed all of the cabinets doors and drawers as well as the hardware (hinges and knobs). We cleaned everything thoroughly and used a can of Krylon Brushed Metallic in Oil Rubbed Bronze to respray all of the hinges to matche the knobs. As the hinges dried, we masked off the cabinets with painters tape and newspaper and got to work painting.

kitchen reveal3

kitchen reveal2

I used a roller on the big surfaces (cupboard doors, faces of drawers, sides of cabinets, etc.) and a brush for cutting in and smaller areas. My choice of paint was DecoArt’s Chalky Finish paint in Everlasting. The great thing using chalk paint is that it’s not necessary to prime or sand your surface first. Cuts out a lot of the work and time!

kitchen reveal4

I did 3 coats on the kitchen cabinets, allowing dry time in between each coat. Once I was finished painting with the Chalky Finish paint, I moved on to the wax. Directions for using the wax are right on the container. It’s pretty easy- paint the surface, let dry, and then buff to desired sheen. 

kitchen reveal6

Once all cabinet surfaces were waxed and buffed, we put the drawers and doors and hardware back on. Then we finished up the slate backsplash…

kitchen reveal8

Which I am completely in love with. Look at those corners! All the heart eyes. It’s quite fabulous being married to a professional contractor. He has taught me and continues to teach me so much. Because you know- saw it. wanted it. made it.

Here’s the after picture again…

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Much lighter and brighter with Everlasting on the cabinets! I think this was a great easy kitchen update and will benefit us for real estate purposes.

kitchen reveal10

kitchen reveal5

Thanks so much for stopping by to check out our easy kitchen update! I’ll be back soon to share our master bathroom… EEK!

Here’s a breakdown for you. These are the projects that we have completed in the kitchen:

  • Flooring (slate from Floor and Decor) 
  • Counter Tops (faux granite laminent done by a friend)
  • Backsplash (slate from Floor and Decor) installed by my husband 
  • Knobs (Home Depot)
  • Paint on the walls (Behr paint called Oakburl)
  • Paint on the cabinets (DecoArt Chalky Finish in Everlasting)
  • Wax on the cabinets (Decoart Creme Wax)
  • Hinge update (Krylon Brushed Metallic in Oil Rubbed Bronze Satin)
  • Grout and glue for flooring/backsplash (Home Depot)
  • Paint brushes and rollers (Home Depot)
  • Tools (Ryobi)


I was not compensated to write this post, however, DecoArt did supply me with the Chalky Finish Paint and Wax to paint my cabinets). All ideas and opinions are my own and I only share products I love and feel my readers will love too.

Window Makeover on a Budget

Hey there everyone! Our home decor contributor, Siri, is back this month to share an awesome Window Makeover on a Budget! I am really enjoying all of her fun tips and tricks…
Hi Friends!
It’s Siri from Of Pumpkin Thieves and Buffalo Wings again!


Photo by Rennai of Ten22 Studio

Today I’m sharing about another DIY home decor trick to make fixing up the little details in your home easier! I love to take photos in my home, whether they be of my daughter, my dogs, projects, or for blogging, I need good lighting for them. 

One hint to getting great lighting for indoor photos is to have clean white colors within a room so that they tint the photo to be brighter. I’m always looking for that natural light that comes through my windows.

All of the windows in our home have these standard old blinds. You know, the kind that are awful to try to clean.

I wanted to find a way to beautify my windows on a budget, but also do it in such a way that my natural light would still come into the rooms.

Here’s the window in the playroom/ my office.
 I had a vision for just a simple, clean, gentle look to cover up those blinds.

I hunted around and finally found EXACTLY what I needed!
At IKEA I purchased two sets of mesh, lace curtains for $3.99 a pair. I also got the bars to hang them and the hardware for under $5.
 I then layered the curtains so that there were two layers, tying the front layer as pictured!

So my window got a makeover for $9 and now it still lets in all that glorious light for me to photograph my baby girl, but it also looks pretty and almost ethereal.
 You could also easily customize this idea by hanging a banner across the top or draping strings of needle felted balls or something similar from the top to add color that matches the room.

That natural light in my home makes all the difference!

Thanks for having me Kara and thanks for reading everyone!
I hope you enjoyed this month’s easy DIY home decor trick!
Come by and visit my blog next month for the full reveal of my office and Svea’s playroom!
Follow Siri on Instagram too!

Gussy Up That Bedroom Wall

Is it just me, or does the master bedroom always seem to be the LAST place we design, renovate, and decorate? I know with us, we started with painting, then flooring, then the playroom, now my daughter’s bedroom (for the 2nd time)… and by the time I’m done with all of that, all I want to do is PASS OUT in my master bedroom. 
Sometimes, luckily, it’s the little things that can really add that special touch to a wall or a room.
Thanks to Cut It Out, I was about to Gussy up that bedroom wall!

{Excuse the shadows & glare! Bad lighting in our bedroom.}

So pretty right?!
Here are the 3 frames Cut It Out provided me with:
I decided that I wanted to put some of our favorite wedding photos in these beautiful frames and somehow incorporate lyrics from our wedding song.
Here’s what I did:
1. Paint the frames with Satin Ivory Krylon spray paint and allow dry time.

2. Design and cut a vinyl “sticker”, using my Silhouette and song lyrics. (I spent more time browsing fun fonts than I needed to.)

3. Peel off the excess vinyl so only the words are left. Using transfer paper, transfer the sticker to the frame and smooth. Remove transfer paper.

4. Paint the frames with flat black Krylon spray paint and allow dry time.

5. Peel off the vinyl (LOVE this part).

6. Distress the edges of the frames by lightly sanding.

7. Put the pictures in the frames.

8. Hang on the wall & admire.

(Excuse the shadows in the photos. We get HORRIBLE lighting in our master bedroom.)

Don’t you?
Here’s a before and after of my bedroom wall.

You can check the Cut It Out site HERE.
You can check the Cut It Out Facebook page HERE.
And you can check out the FUN GIVEAWAY sponsored by Cut It Out going on HERE at MFTM tomorrow.
I was not paid to write this post. All opinions are my own. I was provided with 3 frames from Cut It Out to review as well as products to give away.

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