Momma Told Me: May 2017

Blog Archive

Spare Change Laundry Room DIY + How To Get 12 Weeks Of Freshness

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #PurexCrystalFresh #CollectiveBias
As an adult I've always found the process of sorting, washing, and folding one's laundry very calming. I enjoy the sight of tightly folded corners, crisp edges, and stacks of clothing piled high, organized by color. But laundry and I haven't always gotten along.

In fact, when I was a young girl it was one of my first chores to rotate the loads of laundry and pull and sort simple things such as socks and towels. It was a monotonous chore with little care. Am I wrong or isn't half the pleasure of having to go through the whole laundering process the act of being able to pull one's warm linens out of the dryer smelling 'fresh'? Sure, 'fresh' smells different to everyone, and their tastes, but laundry should have some positive aromatic effect, no? Well the loads of my childhood were absolutely fragrance free- Something Momma had made an edict on after a particularly horrible skin reaction of mine that was traced back to a strongly perfumed detergent.
Discover #PurexCrystalFresh with up to 12 weeks of freshness when you use one of 10 amazing Purex Crystals in wash fragrance booster scents. #AD
As it turns out, or rather as I was bold enough to experiment and discover as an adult with my own laundry decisions, it was only that specific brand of detergent I have such an adverse reaction to. And, while there are a few other wayward products I've discovered here and there that cause an annoyance, there are some staple brands I can rely on not to irritate my sensitive skin. And that is where my passion for Purex® came from.

It wasn't the amazing value of the brand, or how easy it was to find in nearly every major retailer I chose to shop at, but the wide range of distinct fragrances I could actually enjoy. And, when Purex released their range of Purex® Crystals in wash fragrance boosters I knew I could at last partner my favorite Purex® Natural Elements detergent with an uplifting aroma of my choice. At long last my laundry process was as magical as a unicorn prancing through a meadow. You may laugh but amazing smelling laundry is something I consider I basic right, and that right was denied to me for the first portion of my life!
Discover #PurexCrystalFresh with up to 12 weeks of freshness when you use one of 10 amazing Purex Crystals in wash fragrance booster scents. #AD
Discover #PurexCrystalFresh with up to 12 weeks of freshness when you use one of 10 amazing Purex Crystals in wash fragrance booster scents. #AD
Discover #PurexCrystalFresh with up to 12 weeks of freshness when you use one of 10 amazing Purex Crystals in wash fragrance booster scents. #AD
But wait- the seagulls fluttering in the ocean breeze, or the playful squirrel chattering through the flowered meadow doesn't end at my dryer. Purex® Crystals offer up to 12 weeks of freshness! With every swoosh of my closet door, or creak of a dresser drawer I enjoy subtle fragrance from a variety of amazing scents. 10 scents, to be exact. Purex® Crystals come in 3 different collections, Classic, Aromatherapy, and NEW Botanicals as well as the Limited Edition Oh So Chic fragrance. So you, heck everyone in your house, can enjoy a gentle laundry fragrance that matches your nose, erm, personality.
Discover #PurexCrystalFresh with up to 12 weeks of freshness when you use one of 10 amazing Purex Crystals in wash fragrance booster scents. #AD
I buy my Purex® Crystals at Walmart or Target, but you'll also find it at many major grocery retailers, and online at sites such as There are 2 sizes sold at my local Walmart, where Purex® Crystals are currently on rollback- If I wasn't so set on owning such a variety of my favorite fragrances I'd definitely jump at the family 'value' size which is near triple the capacity of the original 18oz bottle.

If you're new to laundry fragrance boosters Purex® Crystals is one of the simplest ways to go. Just add as much, or as little, directly to your washer load before you start your was. Your clothes will emerge smelling of kitty cats and lady bugs (or a more refined scent such as Sandalwood and Vanilla if you're into that sort of thing), and continue to smell amazing through the drying process, and up to 12 weeks after!
I recently discovered a new favorite, Purex® Crystals Fresh Mountain Breeze, from the Classic collection. It has a very crisp 'clean' build with notes of sweet florals and crisp mountain air. It reminds me a little bit of that beautiful aroma just after an unexpected rain. And, with that in mind I was inspired to 'wash away' some of the clutter in my laundry room with a simple D.I.Y Spare Change holder project. Having only recently moved from a condo (where I shared a communal laundry room) to our house (with a private laundry room) I'm still getting the hang of some of the finer conveniences of personal domesticity.

Here's what you'll need to recreate this project:

Mason Jar
Lumber Board Cut To Size Based On Your Mason Jar Size
Paint Of Choice (I Used A Stained Glass Spray Paint)
White Paint/Brush or Paint Pen
Hose Clamp (Of Appropriate Size for Your Jar Mouth)
Small Screwdriver and Small Wood Screw
Wood Stain of Choice + Old Rag
Polyurethane Seal/Clear Coat
6-8" Rope OR Simple Hook Bracket Hardware To Hang
Staple/Upholstery Gun (If Using Rope)
Rubber Gloves
You'll have a lot of freedom on your choices for this project. I went back and forth on the size of jar I wanted to use- I ended up going with a classic 8oz mason.

I knew I wanted to be able to see the change in the jar- a sort of mental encouragement to not only use the jar, but check pockets before laundering as it all adds up! I first washed and dried the jar, even though it was brand new, to ensure a nice even paint coat. Since I was using a spray paint I wore a particle mask and applied a few coats over the course of a morning until I reached the desired amount of  transparency. This project would be equally cute with a chalk paint outer coat- one could even 'dip' the bottom half of the jar to add a pop of color.
While my jar dried, in between coats, I put on some gloves and applied a generous layer of Briarsmoke (colored) wood stain to my board.The key is to work the color into the wood in circular motions with a rag, until the color has been absorbed into the grain and reveals the natural flow of grain beneath it. Drying time was relatively quick and I was able to apply a clear top coat/seal about 20 minutes after the last side was treated. You will want to apply some sort of clear seal layer as to prevent any paint/words you apply from bleeding on the wood surface later.

 I don't own any power tools but the board itself came in 5' and the hardware store does cuts for free. As a bonus I was able to get 3 appropriately sized boards out of my single 5' board, to make 3 of these spare change collectors.
Once my wood was sealed and dry I took a white paint marker and free-handed my desired phrase on the top half of my board. While I chose 'Finders Keepers,' a phrase from my childhood, you might like to write 'Spare Change', 'Mom's Tip Jar' or 'Vacation Fund' on yours. Since the final product will be displayed indoors I chose not to add a top/clear coat on top of my text, but you could if you wanted a more polished finished product.
For literally leftover change at the hardware store I was able to get a foot of cut rope to use as accents on my projects. For this particular jar I chose to use the rope as a sort of decorative handle which I could hang the board by. A few good pops of the upholstery/staple gun secured the rope much quicker than I could have screwed brackets into the back of the wood.
The final assembly was a bit of a pain, but only compared to the rest of the project. While Jay suggested I use small nail tacks to pin the hose bracket down (hammering between the bracket's notches) I wanted to be sure the heavy glass jar full of change wouldn't go anywhere, even if it was hanging full. I used a fat, heavy duty, nail to hammer a gap into the hose clamp's bracket notches then screwed through the gap directly into the wood on the front of my board. Because I'd chosen a wide head screw the screw itself rested between the threading of my mason jar and reinforced the pressure of the hose clamp, once ratcheted closed.
Freshen up your laundry room with this clever Spare Change D.I.Y! Discover #PurexCrystalFresh with up to 12 weeks of freshness when you use one of 10 amazing Purex Crystals in wash fragrance booster scents. #AD
It was really pretty simple, and kind of a fun beginner's project. I mean, I like to think I worked with wood- but really, it was power tool free and only took about 20 minutes of actual effort and time. In fact, with the leftover supplies I was able to make 2 more so both my mother and father's girlfriend will be getting one for their laundry room!
Freshen up your laundry room with this clever Spare Change D.I.Y! Discover #PurexCrystalFresh with up to 12 weeks of freshness when you use one of 10 amazing Purex Crystals in wash fragrance booster scents. #AD
Speaking of my mother- Summer is the perfect time to send care packages to loved ones, and I can't wait for her to receive her next one. I've carefully washed a stack of buttersoft leggings in my favorite Purex® Crystals fragrance so the box will smell amazing when it arrives in her hands. With 12 weeks of freshness, even slow transit times can't rain on this fragrance parade. In fact, I'm even sending along a bottle of Purex® Crystals for her to try. Purex® Crystals really provide a great scent at a great price! After all, a daughter can teach her mother a few laundry tricks now and then, too, right? Now, tell me, if your laundry could smell like anything 12 weeks after washing, what fragrance would you like to smell? Purex® Crystals just might have a fragrance booster to match!

10 Habits of Highly Loved Pets + $10 Gift Card When You Spend $40 at PetSmart Deal

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #PurinaMysteries #CollectiveBias
10 Habits of Highly Loved Pets #PurinaMysteries #AD

If someone came to me and asked me to draw my family tree it's no mystery who would be in my closest branches- the cat and the dog. It may sound silly to some, but for the better part of the pet loving population pets ARE family and they most definitely get treated as such. For better and for worse, as Truffles reminds me every annual vet checkup.

But we, as humans, don't just care for our pets- animals of all shapes and sizes play a vital role in the happiness, and even well being, of their owners. You wouldn't be surprised to learn that those who have pets in their home often benefit from reduced stress, increased physical activity, and potentially longer (certainly happier) lives. So it's also no mystery why we spoil our pets- something Purina and PetSmart know all about.
If you've ever walked into a PetSmart you know it's much more than a pet store- it's an entirely different experience than walking down the pet care aisle of your local grocer. Every single person working is dedicated to, and passionate about, the happiness and well being of pets. Not only are you welcome to bring your well behaved, leashed, pet in shopping with you but you'll find aisle upon aisle of the newest, most popular, and even specialty toys and food to truly spoil your pet.

Our local PetSmart also offers full service Banfield® Pet Hospital and Grooming departments, as well as obedient and agility training classes for dogs. I love that I can go in with Nora, get some shopping done, discover a few new treats and surprises, and pick her up fully groomed with a smile on her face! The staff truly is wonderful and welcoming, making the choice to shop for all our pet's needs there a 'no brainer'.
One of the things you might not already think of PetSmart for is savings- so Purina® and PetSmart are teaming up this Summer with their special Codeword promotion. Taking advantage of amazing savings on your favorite Purina® products is as easy as spending $40 in participating Purina® products, at PetSmart, during June 1, 2017- June 30, 2017. Then, with your receipt in hand head to the Codeword redemption site and upload your receipt before July 9, 2017. In 4-8 weeks you'll receive a $10 PetSmart gift card in the mail as a special thank you!

But wait! You can redeem this offer as many times as you want on qualifying Purina® at PetSmart purchases of $40 or more made throughout June. That means there's no limit to the number of gift cards you can receive! Even more exciting the landing page for the Codeword promotion will feature exclusive deals and savings on Purina products you buy and love already.
10 Habits of Highly Loved Pets #PurinaMysteries #AD
All this talk about spoiling, erm loving, our pets and the special Purina® at PetSmart Codeword $10 when you spend $40 deal had me inspired. Not only did we head right to our local PetSmart to stock up on some Purina® favorites, but I've decided to share a fun little look at what I call "10 Habits of Highly Loved Pets". You know, those things you or your pets do automatically because of that unbreakable bond between the two of you? Yea, I bet you can check a few of these off the list.....

#1: Your pets go shopping with you.

This one's pretty self explanatory and if you have a dog at home and a PetSmart nearby it's almost guaranteed you've done this a time or two. If not, what's stopping you? There are many places we would love to bring our pets when we go out and about but let's face it, not all are pet friendly. PetSmart is a fun, judgement free, zone where you can bring your pup or leashed cat (or well behaved anything, really) and have some fun shopping together. It doesn't matter if your 6 year-old dog acts as though she has no training and is as excited as a puppy (*cough* Nora) every time she sees someone, of if your poodle is desperately in need of a good shave. There's always a smiling face and helping hand in the form of an eager associate waiting to help you.
10 Habits of Highly Loved Pets #PurinaMysteries #AD
#2: Your pets get 'spa' days.

I'm not talking about bringing your pet to the groomer for a nice touch up trim or Summer shave- I'm talking about all those extra services you add on for your pet you'd never dare pay for for yourself. It has been near half a year since my last professional pedicure and Nora had her nails painted by a 'pro' last month. In fact, I dare say we know our PetSmart groomer better than I know any of the family stylists. Whether you add in a Top Dog spa package, or just tack on the aromatherapy conditioner- your pet deserves a little extra pampering.
#3: Your pet has their own wardrobe.

You may not dress your pet up day in and out but you definitely own a costume or two, a few bandanas, and some coordinating leashes (because hey, you like to match your pet from time to time and they DO have a favorite color.) Whether you've got a tiny dog who feels more comfortable (and warmer) in clothing than their own skin or an ever so patient cat with a collection or designer harnesses, your pet deserves to be just as fashionable, and unique, as you do.
#4: Holidays are just as much for your pets as they are for any children in the family.

And, I dare-say, if you do not have any human children your pets are the full center of attention and spoiling during any major festive holiday. Let's face it, when your chihuahua wore those antlers for the family photo they earned an entire stocking of apology gifts lat Christmas. In our household we like to justify our special pet holiday expressions by saying we are making the holidays safer for our pets by turning all of our decorations into actual treats and pet safe toys. It helps me sleep at night after I've tucked away all of the PetSmart receipts.
#5: You occasionally feel guilty for your pet's 'captivity' so you attempt to bring the outdoors indoors.

For years we lived in a small second story condo with a tiny concrete patio lined with metal rods gaped too far apart to be safe for Nora to play on. We'd attempt to take her out as much as possible but it still never quite eased my own personal guilt for not providing her a large backyard to lounge and roam in. I even had guilt about the cat we'd brought home from a chicken farm and committed to a (rather kushy) domestic life.
Build a grass lounge for your indoor cats for under $10- pick up a plot of sod at your local hardware/gardening store. #PurinaMysteries #AD
If you've ever built a catio, made a custom 2 story dog house, or set up a weekly delivery for a square of sod for the cat to lounge on you're guilty of this habit. Let's face it no matter how many amazing toys and Purina treats a home is stocked with your pet's bound to get stir-crazy now and again. For those times pet parents often bring a little bit of the outdoors, or outdoor enjoyment, to their home.
10 Habits of Highly Loved Pets #PurinaMysteries #AD
#7: Humans that don't travel far without their pet/s.

Naturally not all highly loved pets WANT to travel- Heaven knows I've wanted to plop Truffles in a bubble backpack and go for a hike on a few occasions but she's the sort of cat that panics stepping 2 feet outside her backyard door. I daresay it wouldn't be much fun for her.

But for those lucky, and enthusiastic, traveling pets the most highly loved ones travel in style. And the smallest ones have devised a brain-altering technique to convince their humans they must not walk at any expense. Usually this involves some sort of pawing at a human's ankles, or simply offering a 'Puss In Boots' face with a slight whimper. Yes, our highly loved dog is most often carried, rides in her own open-air backpack, or strolls in her own stroller. We pay extra for her to fly on planes, and stay in hotels. Can you say spoiled?
10 Habits of Highly Loved Pets #PurinaMysteries #AD
#8: Getting away with murder.

Barring a horribly 80's cinematic comedy, we certainly hope not pets are getting away with actual homicide- BUT there certainly have been a few plants, sofas, and other household 'accidents' our cat's planned through the years. She's even developed a sort of 'What are you going to do about it?" face that slightly unnerves me. But, at the end of the day we chalk it up to her raging catnip addiction and repair the damage as though the 'incident' never happened. That's the sort of brainwashing power highly loved pets have.
#9: Idle paws are best kept busy.

Which brings us to number 9. If you've ever had the bright idea to turn an otherwise human activity or tradition into a pet inclusive one then this one's for you. Whenever I know I will be going away for a few days, or simply unable to offer extra attention due to a busy schedule I always find one-on-one things for the pets and I to do. Honestly, I think it makes me feel better more than them- but we always have fun. Hey, we even made a work of art once!
#10: Everything the human buys MUST be for the pet. It's only logical.

The cat, more so than the dog because of her mobility, is pretty convinced every item which passes through our home requires a thorough inspection. Furthermore the vast majority of these things could only be present for her benefit, and her benefit only. The only exceptions being things which do not generate enough interest to pass her test- which much be destroyed or removed immediately. Either one- she'll help if needed.

We recently switched Nora to the new Purina® Bella Dry Small Dog Food and Truffles has NOT let a day pass without showing some very special attention to the 2nd bag. The first day I was sitting on the couch typing up a post when I heard some loud rustling behind me on the photo table. I didn't think much of it until it was still continuing, even escalating, 10 minutes later. As it turns out Truffles things Bella must be the best cat food ever. She has proceeded to roll all over the bag multiple times a day for nearly a week since. I don't have the heart to tell her that's the dog's food, or to put the bag away.
10 Habits of Highly Loved Pets #PurinaMysteries #AD
So there you have it, 10 Habits of Highly Loved Pets- and a few of them you can begin instituting this month with a little help from PetSmart and Purina®. At the very lest you need to stop into PetSmart just to browse the adorable range of Summer toys and accessories- We HAD to take a pineapple, dog beer, and a watermelon teether home. I couldn't get enough of all the bright colors and fun characters! And, while you're at PetSmart remember they are currently running a very special Buy A Bag, Give A Bowl charitable promotion where they donate a bowl of food to an animal in need for every bag of dry food purchased. That's any size, any brand- of course we're a little partial to the new Purina® Bella, which just so happens to be participating in the Purina® PetSmart Codeword promotion as well!
10 Habits of Highly Loved Pets #PurinaMysteries #AD
Oh- And I guess there's one more way to tell you have a highly loved pet...sometimes its literally spelled out in writing....on your wall.

Make sure to spoil your pets a little extra this Summer and take advantage of the Purina® Codeword at PetSmart promotion by uploading your participating receipts to the Codeword website by July 7th, 2017! For more fun ideas on how to spoil your pet check our the Codeword Social Hub! Now, tell me, what are some of the things you do to spoil your pet?

How To Save Money On Pretty Much Anything Online

Save money with the FREE Groupon Coupons database of savings, sales, promo codes and more. Find your favorite retailers at Groupon Coupons and begin saving today! #AD

Some of us are late to the game.

Sure you know what Groupon is. You might even use it on a weekly basis.

You click through those emails with the awesome local deals, or head on over when there's a new service or restaurant you want to try, hoping to score a discount. You see Groupon started as a place where people could purchase extreme deals by paying a fraction of the retail value in exchange for a voucher or code redeemable with the originating brand/retailer. It was a great way for new brands, restaurants, and entertainment to get their name out there and draw new customers in while offering amazing deals on quality goods and services.

But Groupon has come a long way since the days before it was a common household name- and yet I am still surprised at the number of people I meet that don't know all of the amazing OTHER ways one can save with Groupon.
Save money with the FREE Groupon Coupons database of savings, sales, promo codes and more. Find your favorite retailers at Groupon Coupons and begin saving today! #AD
Of course if you're a Groupon pro then you already know about Groupon Goods and Getaways. But, just in case you don't-

Groupon Goods is a marketplace where you can browse thousands of items, across hundreds of categories, for amazing slashed prices on name brand, and even designer, gifts and household buys. Whenever I have a birthday or event coming up which requires a unique, or specialized, gift I browse the Groupon Goods page. There's always something one of a kind or limited edition to get my hands on at an amazing price. Of course there are also less fancy goods, such as mainstream team merchandise, plush favorites for the kids, and name brand kitchenware too- it just depends on what you're in the mood to shop for. Purchase your Groupon goods right on the Groupon site and have them sent direct to your door for total savings convenience from the comfort of your couch.

Groupon Getaways is the place you go to discover vacations you never knew you needed to take- or to score an amazing price on every aspect of vacation from hotels and spa treatments to actual real life adventures and multi-day getaway itineraries. Whether you're looking for somewhere fun to escape for a last minute weekend adventure, or trying to score an amazing deal on a one-of-a-kind room for your upcoming anniversary you need to check out the slashed prices and amazing bundles on Groupon Getaways.
But what if you're not looking to save on a vacation, and you really only want to buy that one specific something sold exclusively at your favorite online retailer?

Groupon is hooking you up with their new Groupon Coupons tab!

You'll spot the Groupon Coupons tab on the main page of your Groupon landing screen- simply click on over to view the hottest exclusive deals, as well as some of the Internet's most popular savings on websites you use and surf everyday. From promo codes to sales and even in-store offers you can navigate up to hundreds of great coupons and deals for your favorite retailers, no voucher required.

That's right you can save on pretty much anything online with the FREE Groupon Coupons section, and their constantly updated list of ongoing sales, discount codes, special offers and more. It's kind of like having a robot read all of those annoying emails your favorite retailers send you, and organize them for easy viewing, categorized, in one nice neat space!
Save money with the FREE Groupon Coupons database of savings, sales, promo codes and more. Find your favorite retailers at Groupon Coupons and begin saving today! #AD
For example, I make, on average, 4+ transactions in a week. Yes, I know.

Groupon Coupons currently has over 53 promo codes and 110 sales filed under Amazon- from special Pantry coupon code savings to exclusive deals on the ever so useful Amazon Prime membership. All I need to do is click on the offer that appeals to me, read the 'fine print' of the discount/promo and click on over to shop and take advantage of the savings directly on the retailer's website. It's absolutely FREE and it's something you should be using!

Now, tell me, did you already know about Groupon Coupons? Have you used Groupon Coupons before? What retailers might you hope to find savings for with this new Groupon feature?

This post was written on behalf of Groupon. All opinions and shopping experiences are my own.

How To Live Life #MoreInspired + D.I.Y Necklace Organizer Tutorial

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and LIFEWTR. All opinions are mine alone. #ThirstInspiration #CollectiveBias
My mother always told me the toughest person to be is yourself.

As a young girl, my best friend was a boy. My mother spent nearly every free minute she could with me, typically quizzing me on the dictionary or going over scholastic flashcards. I graduated early, with no idea of who I was or what I wanted to be, and moved clear across country at age17. My early 20's were amazing. I like to think of myself during those years as fearless. There's a fine line between fearless and reckless, of course, fearless means you understand risks and find the potential outcome of higher value. I was 50 lbs lighter, working 3 jobs to pay the bills, staying out on Friday nights and making the most of every minute of life.

Older me might be inclined to be jealous of younger me, but older me is wiser.
I'm a strong believer that you can choose to create happiness. That ordinary days can be extraordinary. Choose LIFEWTR from 7-Eleven to be inspired.

I went through a bit of a slump heading towards 30. It wasn't even about my age, I simply allowed myself to fall victim to excuses. I'd spent the majority of my adult life playing by the rules, working hard, and taking care of others. Often times both physical and mental reflections made me feel overwhelmed and even sorry for myself.

Then, one day after turning 30, I woke up to a revelation. Most of the happiness I recalled, and had created in my young adult years was actually the result of trying to mold myself into roles that didn't fit. Today I might be a little curvier, my hair may not be as long and lush, and I might declare bedtime before 5 am, but that doesn't mean life is over. In fact, I rather choose to think it's just beginning.

That's right, I finally learned to embrace me. And me is colorful. Me is loud. Me is creative. Me is bold.
I like to think I'm a lot like LIFEWTR, and- if I'm being honest as I'm encouraging you to be, I'll admit I was first drawn to this product purely on looks. I know, I know, it's awful of me to judge my water by the bottle it comes in but LIFEWTR uses cool graphics and catchy colors to attract like-minded consumers. Consumers that are just ad-driven to push boundaries, express themselves, and explore life as their positive styling and vibes impress. Their bottles of delicious purified, pH balanced (with electrolytes for taste), water stand out in the cold case of my local 7-Eleven. Their premium packaging isn't just inspiring, it's an expression of who I am.
I've always loved bold, bright colors and busy prints - but only recently have I embraced them in my journey of self-expression through my wardrobe and even home decor choices. For me the thought of being the center of attention has always been a bit frightening, but I've found expression myself in accessories or apparel gives me confidence. If someone is staring, they're probably staring at my purple hair or my rainbow leggings. And, suddenly the nervous woman who felt so exposed once before now feels confident - let them stare. This is me, take it or leave it.

When you make decisions focusing on your own happiness it's hard not to feel confident and bold.
Whenever I reach for my tall bottle of LIFEWTR from 7-Eleven, I always smile just a little. The colors, the prints, the beautiful designs on the front, remind me to act boldly in everything I do. They also make me feel a little bit like I'm accessorizing without even trying!

Speaking of accessorizing - my bestie has recently begun making jewelry featuring gemstones and organic mineral formations. While her focus is on educating people about the importance of positive focus and potential metaphysical properties, I rather find the small pieces of Earth quite inspiring and grounding. That may sound contradictory, but the bright and gorgeous colors really engage my vivid and creative personality, while the physical weight, touch, and shapes of the stones remind me to keep calm and stay grounded throughout the day.
I have tons of these necklaces - seeing as I might be her best customer, so I've been itching to make something just as gorgeous to organize and display them on. As a family, we made a day of searching for the perfect base to inspire my creation. We scoured the weekly Swap Meet, complete with doggy backpack and a bottle of LIFEWTR, then headed up to downtown Santa Barbara for a gorgeous afternoon, and back towards our local harbor and beach in search of driftwood. You can use pretty much anything for your board - I knew I wanted something with a story. Something with age and personality, so we brought back a tar covered piece of driftwood.
Whether you're using an old piece of fence or a knotted block of driftwood, you'll want to ensure that your base sits out in the sun for several days to kill any moisture that may be hiding in the pores.

You then have a few options to really personalize the base. I chose to stain the wood without entirely changing the personality or presence of it. For this, I used something called a Pickling Wash- but you can achieve the same results typically by making an acrylic solution that is watered down 1:1 parts water and paint.

Lightly brush the color in key areas, typically raised areas, edges, and crannies where the color will act as a highlight. Then take a damp cloth and wipe the color away. Allow your base to again sit in the sun for an afternoon to ensure the staining has dried. Add a clear top coat to seal your base if desired.
While you may find hooks the natural progression for this project I actually had a bit of fun hunting down some mismatched knobs. In order to secure the knobs to the base I 'drilled' a screw slightly larger than the knob's threading circumference into my wood by hand. Because the wood was soft I could essentially use a bit of force to screw into and out of the wood effectively creating a hole to thread my knob into. You could also use a drill to make the process a bit easier, but you would then likely need to glue your knobs into the created holes.

A single bracket screwed into the back (keeping weighting in mind for positioning) was all I needed to call my project done.
I have to say I'm pretty thrilled with how my necklace organizer turned out. It's definitely a focal point on my wall, and now I don't have to worry about the cat coming across my necklaces and doing cat things (eating/hiding/mauling) to them. In fact, I've been doing a lot of DIY lately. I take on a lot of projects where I begin with absolutely no plan outside of a vision and time after time I'm impressed with how they turn out. If only I had learned to be this fearless sooner!
There's no magic elixir for confidence, of course, but I can remind you that you are the most powerful resource to your own success. And I'm not talking about the number of dollars reported on your income tax, or how large a house you live in. No, success is directly related to happiness. If you can learn to be happy with what you have, while still striving to constantly be greater and never compromise who you are, you'll surely be the biggest success story there ever was.
It's not easy to be bold and fearless. It's human nature to question and second guess. After all, if there weren't risks to every decision what fun would life truly be? My biggest advice, to living a brighter, bolder, more truer you is to start in your own home/office/car. Slowly express yourself and live out your true desires where you feel most comfortable and confident. Then, when you're ready, let the world see you shine like you were born to, even if it's just a little at a time.

When I stopped focusing so much on how others were seeing me and started focusing on what I wanted to see and experience my entire world expanded instantly. I began creating without hesitation, spoke up where I'd otherwise been silent before, and most of all I learned to embrace life.

Explore more Thirstpiration inspired by LIFEWTR at 7-Eleven by visiting the Social Hub.