It’s All a Phase

It's All a Phase

Hey parents, I learned a secret today. It’s life changing. Are you ready for it?

It’s all a phase.

That’s right. Everything. The morning sickness. The cravings. The tummy flutters. The kicks and jabs. The hip and pelvic pain. The hospital stay. The terror of taking care of a new life. The heart-stopping fear. The fragility. The sleepless nights. The concern over not getting it right. The nursing. The pumping. The washing of bottles. The tediousness. The sweet smells. The not-so-sweet smells. The blood-curdling screaming. The wonder of discovery. The awareness. The schedules. The deviation of schedules. The sleeping-through-the-night. The not-sleeping-through-the-night. The illness. The cuddles. The cries for Mommy and Daddy. The smooshing of faces against the window when you come home. The crying when you leave. The clutching when you are near. The stream of IloveyouIloveyouIloveyouIloveyou and Mommymommymommymommymommymommy and nonononononononononono.

They are all phases. The good and bad. The ones that make us laugh our heads off and the ones where we want to just huddle up in a ball and pull a blanket over our heads and hide until forever.

They say to enjoy it all because it goes so fast. That’s true, it does. But remember that it’s all a phase. Things will ebb and flow. I’m not saying you have to love every minute. I certainly didn’t. Parenthood is hard and in many ways it is a thankless job. But one day your child will no longer insist on playing hide and seek by opening and closing the door to the bathroom while you are in it. Too soon you will put away the bottle for the last time (good riddance) only to one night wish for the ease of the bottle over that dreaded, leaky sippy cup.

As I sit here writing this, it is almost 10 PM and my children are still in their cribs jumping up and down refusing to fall asleep. But they are laughing harder than ever. And I am loving it. One day they will no longer want to share a room or delight in each other’s company. For now, I know that this is just a phase.

And I am enjoying it.

Loris Diffuser Review

Review- Loris Diffuser

I am often asked by my Healthier Oil the Thyme team about diffusers: Which is the best? Are there others to try besides the Young Living brand? Can you trust other brands?

So I’ve been on the hunt for other diffusers to try them and see how they work. I’ve tried two others from Amazon, and I haven’t been totally impressed, as least not compared to the Home Diffuser from Young Living. Still, I have been on the hunt for a more affordable essential oil diffuser to recommend.

I was recently able to try out the Loris diffuser (sold on Amazon for $36.99), and I’m excited to share information about it with you. I did a Periscope broadcast of the diffuser, and I have the video saved on YouTube:


In case you don’t want to watch the video, here are the highlights:

  • Holds 120 mL of water.
  • Has graduated lines on the inside cylinder to keep track of how full it is.
  • Comes with a cup to refill it (watch as the cup measures to 150 mL, although you should only fill the diffuser to 120 mL).
  • Small in size, but attractive-looking (about 6″ tall and a modified cone shape).
  • Has a color-changing nightlight, and you can let it cycle through all the colors (press the button once), flip through the colors and select your choice (keep pressing the “light” button), or turn the light off completely (press and hold).
  • Two mist settings: intermittent (green) or always on (red).
  • When you plug in the diffuser, you still have to press the button to turn on the machine and pick your settings.
  • Rubber feet to grip the tabletop surface.
  • Dots to line up and lock the cover onto the base.

To use the diffuser, it couldn’t be easier:

  • Remove the cover.
  • Connect to an AC adapter. Tuck the cord underneath (fits nicely).
  • Use the provided measuring cup to add water (I’m assuming tap water is fine as it mentions “from the water pipe” in the directions). Do not fill past the fill line (120 mL).
  • Drop 2-3 drops of essential oil per 100 mL of water (I used 4-5 drops of Peace & Calming).
  • Put the cover back on and line up the dots.
  • Turn on the mist and choose your setting: intermittent (green) or always on (red). The intermittent setting means that it’s on for 30 seconds and off for 30 seconds. This is typically my favorite setting.
  • Turn on the light (or don’t) and choose your setting: cycle through all the colors (press the button once), flip through the colors and select your choice (keep pressing the “light” button), or turn the light off completely (press and hold).
  • Leave and enjoy.

Some other things I found:

  • I wanted to test how long the diffuser ran. I kept it on the continuous setting, and it was still running 6 hours later, although the water lever was low and it wasn’t putting out as much mist. It is supposed to run for 8 hours, and I think it would get pretty close to that.
  • After 6 hours, It also wasn’t as strong as before. This could have been because I was used to the smell, but it also could have been weaker as there was less water. This is very normal for all diffusers, including the Young Living ones. If you put your nose right up to the output, you could still smell the Peace & Calming (ahhhh!).
  • When it was completely out of water, if you pressed MIST, it will cause the unit to beep 3 times to remind you to add water. It also will beep as you are changing settings.
  • Per the instructions, after 5-6 times of usage or 2-3 days, you must clean the unit. There are directions that come with the diffuser.
  • It does have a fan sound, but it is much quieter than the Young Living Home Diffuser.
  • I am not sure that it will cover a large area and have a very strong smell. One thing to consider, however, is that you don’t necessarily have to strongly smell something for it to work. Remember how strong, concentrated, and powerful Young Living oils are! On the Amazon question/answer page, one user said that it worked for their 300 sq foot room.
  • Along with the purchase, you can receive a free e-Book with EO recipes. I didn’t receive an email with it, but you can look in your Amazon Message Center for it.
  • This diffuser doesn’t utilize heat at all, which is exactly how you want your EO diffusers to work!
  • The biggest issue that I had with the diffuser is that I had a hard time taking off the cover because it was so smooth and there wasn’t a good grip for my hands. But if that’s the worst it gets, then I would say that is great!

Overall, I really, really like this diffuser! I can definitely recommend it as an inexpensive alternative. It’s not perfect, but it definitely beats a $25 diffuser I tried a year ago!


Disclaimer: I received the following product in exchange for my honest review. I did not receive any compensation for my post, but all opinions are 100% my own.

Ditch the Dryer Sheet (Feeling Fluffy Dryer Ball Review)


I could totally tell you that in an effort to live more chemical-free, we ditched the dryer sheets, but in actuality we stopped using these money-sucking, chemical-laden sheets of fibers years ago when we got our new steam dryer. You see, you can’t use the steam drying cycles with dryer sheets.

But I guess you could say that this was our first step into using fewer chemicals and relying more on natural methods (water/steam).

Throughout the past couple years, however, we’ve gotten more and more chemical-free. As we were working through our Adventures in Cloth Diapering, we became curious about dryer balls and actually purchased two of them from Franklin Goose.

However, I also came to realize that you actually need quite a few dryer balls in your laundry load to effectively complete the drying cycle. When I had the opportunity to review a set of 6 dryer balls from Feeling Fluffy, I was thrilled and jumped on the opportunity.

Benefits of Using Dryer Balls:

  • Chemical-free: Many of the chemicals found in conventional dryer sheets contain A-Terpineol (may be associated with central nervous system disorders), Benzyl Alcohol (an upper respiratory irritant), Camphor (listed as an EPA Hazardous Waste), and Benzyl Acetate (carcinogen linked to pancreatic cancer). This should honestly be the biggest reason why you ditch the dryer sheet!
  • Reduced drying time: the 100% wool dryer balls will pull and absorb moisture in your fabrics.
  • Hypoallergenic: There are no irritants in these natural dryer balls, meaning that it’s great for sensitive skin.
  • Keeps home quiet: Compared to PVC or plastic dryer balls, wool dryer balls won’t bang or clunk around. Note: I did find that the wool dryer balls from Feeling Fluffy were as quiet as the others that I already had. That being said, as they are used more and more, they will most likely grow softer and quieter. They were still much quieter than the alternatives.


When I first got started, I had a few concerns:

  1. Would my clothes be more static-y?
  2. Can’t I just make them myself?
  3. Do they really work?

Boy, I love to research when I have questions! I quickly found that my clothes did not have any more static when I used dryer balls than beforehand. This shocked me, as I assumed that the wool in these dryer balls would be Static Heaven. In fact, because the balls help to reduce drying time, that will also help to reduce static (longer drying time = more static). The more you have, the quicker drying time and less static. The balls also create a more humid environment, cutting down on static.


Can you make them yourself or use tennis balls? Tennis balls are heavy and will make lots of noise when you are drying. Not good when the dryer is right next to the nursery, and you run it at night and during naps. So DIY? Sure! But from what I found, it was so much more a hassle to make them than to just buy them. Plus, the price of the Feeling Fluffy dryer balls are incredible (currently $16.12 for a set of 6). Why would you spend so much time and energy on making something that you can buy so easily and inexpensively?


So, do they work? In short. YES! There is a learning curve to remembering to keep them in the dryer and shortening your drying cycle, but they do work! I also feel like our clothes are so much softer (after years of not using any fabric softener, I can feel the difference).


Disclaimer: I did not receive any compensation for this post. All thoughts are 100% my own. I did receive the dryer balls at a highly reduced price in exchange for my review.

Diluting, Carrier Oils, and Roller Bottles

Diluting, Carrier Oils, Roller Bottles

I have a lot of new Healthier Oil the Thyme team members ask about diluting their oils, specifics with carrier oils, and the best way to use roller bottles, so I thought it might be helpful to have an entire post all about this subject. I also created a Periscope broadcast (saved on YouTube).

In case you don’t want to watch the video, here are some of the highlights from it:

Carrier Oils

  • I always dilute EOs (even if using them on myself), because of 2 reasons:
    • Essential oils are so concentrated to begin with, so one drop is really all you need. This lets us use more of the oil for longer. Also, diluting the EO doesn’t dilute the effectiveness because it is so concentrated to begin with.
    • When you dilute the EO with a carrier oil (the fatty oil from plants), it will actually stay on the skin longer without evaporating (because EOs are volatile or evaporate rapidly). By staying on the skin longer, it will work more effectively because it takes longer to absorb.
  • Essential oils are greaseless. They will not stain clothes or fabric the way that greasy carrier oils will.
  • Carrier oils are the fatty oil from the plant that we use to dilute with essential oils.
  • Coconut oil is solid under 76 degrees and liquid over that point. Fractionated coconut oil is altered to stay in liquid form.
  • My favorite carrier oil is Young Living’s V-6 because it is a combination of different ones: fractionated coconut oil, sesame, grape, sweet almond, wheat, sunflower, olive. You essentially get the best of those all in one.
  • Different carrier oils have different properties. Some are thicker than others. Some clog pores, although many don’t. Some are better for sensitive skin. Some have different absorption rates as well.

Using Roller Bottles vs Roller Filament Tops

  • When you join Young Living and get a Premium Starter Kit, you get a roller bottle top that fits on the YL bottles.
  • If you shake that top, you can hear a clicking, and this looseness of the metal ball allows a lot of oil oil. You don’t need all that much to come out at once.
  • My suggestion to use the roller filament from YL: wait until your bottle is empty, pop off stopper top, fill with carrier oil, and then put on roller top. The residue oil that is in the EO bottle will be enough (you don’t have to add any other EOs to the bottle before adding the carrier oil).
  • If you want to use roller bottles (my preference): Purchase them from Bulk Apothecary or Abundant Health.
    • While these bottles have plastic tops, it is harder to roll, so not as much comes out.
    • With these bottles, you would add the oil and carrier oil. Make sure to put top all the way down and label your mix! We even sometimes use Washi tape to visually show the difference between bottles.
    • While you can purchase these bottles from Amazon or Whole Foods (or you local health food store), they are much more expensive.
  • Young Living has some pre-made roller bottles, such as Stress Away, Deep Relief, and others.


Some Other Thoughts

  • Thieves is considered a dietary oil, but I don’t have my children ingest this (or any) essential oils. Instead, I make a diluted roller for them (for the bottom of their feet). For this Thieves roller, I will do about 15-20 drops of Thieves and then the rest is a carrier oil.
  • If you don’t have a roller bottle, you can also use a glass container and pre-mix some and then apply as needed with you hands (just wash your hands afterwards).
  • Once you use a bottle as a roller bottle, I would suggest only using it that way from then on. Think about it: the roller ball touches your skin and then rotates back around into the bottle of oil. While you should always try to clean the skin before rolling on an oil, this doesn’t always happen and contamination may happen. Also, think back to what I wrote about the highly-concentrated oils: those roller tops from YL let a lot of oil out at once, so you would actually be using way more than you need. This is why I suggest you should wait until your bottle is seemingly empty before adding a carrier oil and then attaching the roller filament.


Do you have any other tips or tricks that you have picked up about carrier oils, the roller bottle tops from YL, or creating your mixes?

Healthier Oil the Thyme is a team of Young Living Independent Distributors that focus on education and safety over all else. To join our Young Living Team, you can learn more about purchasing a Premium Starter Kit on our website.

Repainting a Brass Headboard

How to Paint a Brass Headboard
I belong to a local buy/sell/trade group, and when I saw someone post a full-size brass headboard, my brain started turning. I realized that I could totally repaint it a fun, bright color and finally have a finished look in our guest room.

To be honest, I wouldn’t have looked twice, except for the list price for the headboard was only $20. We talked them down to $15. Then, with about $30 in spray paint and primer, I had only spent a total of $45 for this entire project.

To paint a brass headboard, you will need the following:

  • primer (we used 2 cans of Rust-Oleum 2x Ultra Cover Flat White Primer)
  • paint (we used 2 cans of Rust-Oleum Coral Spray Paint)
  • drop cloth
  • extra-fine steel wool
  • optional: spray paint comfort grip

It truly couldn’t be easier to complete the project:

1. Layout the drop cloth and headboard.


2. Rub the steel wool across all surfaces to create an abrasion and give something for the paint to stick to. Wipe with a dry rag to remove any dust.


3. Spray the primer over one side in long strokes. Let dry for 1 hour (if a non-humid day) or as detailed on the paint can.


4. Spray the primer on the other side. Let dry for 24 hours (if non-humid) or as detailed on the paint can.



5. Spray the paint over one side. Let dry for an hour.


6. Spray the paint on the other side. Let dry overnight.

7. Check for any spots for touchups.

8. Attach to bed frame once the paint has dried for at least 24-48 hours. We waited until the paint smell went away a little bit too.IMG_5947

Sewing a Mason Jar Sleeve

Sewing a Mason Jar Sleeve

For my twins’ first birthday, I knew that we needed to celebrate the adventure of making through the first year with twins. One of the things that I wanted to make for their party was mason jar sleeves, but I couldn’t find the right fabric for it. We decided it would be better to create it ourselves instead of continue to search.

We started by having a gifted artist (Amelia Murdock of My Grandest Adventure) create an illustration of our babies. We turned it into a fabric on Spoonflower, and after going back and forth on the type of fabric, we decided on Performance Piqué because when the fabric stretches, it still retains details of the print.



Once we received the fabric, we were ready to start our projects. For this, I created two different kinds of sleeves, one using a standard sewing machine, and the other with my (new) serger/overlock machine.

Creating a Mason Jar Sleeve on a Standard Sewing Machine

First, I measured the circumference of the jar. In this case, it was 8.25” around.


From there, I created a template that gave a quarter-inch seam allowance for the top and bottom of the sleeve, and then I added an extra allowance on the side of 1 ¼”.


The great thing about using a template is that you can try it out on the mason jar first to make sure you are happy with the size. I used this template to cut the sleeves from the fabric.


Normally, I would press the seams, but Performance Pique doesn’t press well at all, so I just had to pin the quarter-inch seam allowance and sew the top and bottom seams.




I wanted a nice, chunky side seam on the top, so I let that seam allowance be ¾”, while I didn’t finish the final side.


To make sure I would have it fit the jar correctly, I sized the sleeve on the jar itself and marked it with a pin.


Using that pin as a guide, I carefully sewed the sides together to create the finished sleeve.



Creating a Mason Jar Sleeve on a Serger/Overlock Machine

I recently got a serger, and I wanted to see how well it would work for this project. Because I didn’t have to do any work or measurements with seam allowance, it was a much faster method of sewing 24 mason jar sleeves.

For this version, I used the same template as before, simply because I wanted my original rectangles to be slightly larger than what I would need in the finished product.


From there, I just ran the top and bottom sides through the serger.


This left me with unfinished sides.


I then pinned the sleeve onto the mason jar with the right sides touching.


I used that pin placement to serge the final side together.


Once the sleeve was turned right-side-out, I had the finished and clean edge where the two sides joined together.


So, with the two different machines, I came up with two completely different styles of mason jar sleeves. If you have a serger, I would definitely recommend that, because of the ease-of-use and speed in finishing a high number of mason jar sleeves. By using the sewing machine, it took some more time, but still came out with a great final product.


Everything But the Kitchen Sink – 04

Welcome to Everything but the Kitchen Sink! We are so excited to be your hosts and to see what you’ve been up to! Join us twice a month to share your favorite projects, recipes, crafts, inspirations, pretty much everything (but the kitchen sink)! Then, stick around and check out the latest and greatest from your fellow bloggers.

EBTKS Link Party Image

Check in with us beginning at 8AM on the first and third Wednesday of each month where we will be hosting your favorite projects, then choosing our favorites to feature at the following party! Don’t forget to stop in for each party to find out if you’ve been featured! You can also check out Everything but the Kitchen Sink’s Pinterest board to find more of our favorite posts!

Meet the ladies behind the sink…


Painting Mom

at Home with Meg

Connect with Meg…

Periscope: @athomewithmeg






Beth ImageBeing Frankenfield

Connect with Beth…

Periscope: @beingfrankenfield

Dory Image Doyle Dispatch

Connect with Dory…

Periscope: @dorydoyle

Find out what we’ve been up to when you visit our blogs!

Last Week’s Favorite!

Check out our favorite post from last week’s Link Party! Hannah, from Seeing the Lovely, shared some great tips on setting goals and why this is the perfect time to do just that! If you’re ready to accomplish that long list of New Year’s resolutions that have become quite dusty, check out Hannah’s post!


Grab the “I was featured” button to share with your readers!

at Home with Meg

Reader’s Choice!

You clicked, we listened! Your favorite post from last week’s Link Party was brought to you by our very own host, Dory, from Doyle Dispatch! She shared her experience from her first visit to Aldi’s! This is a store that has a lot of people curious so I can see why it got a lot of interest from you! See what she thought of her walk through the store!


Grab the “Reader’s Choice” button to share with your readers!

at Home with Meg

Don’t forget to check out Everything but the Kitchen Sink’s Pinterest Board to see if your post was added as one of our TOP FIVE of the week!

On to the party!

Alright, here are a few reminders for Everything but the Kitchen Sink’s link party!

∗Check out your hosts on social media, we’d love to connect with you!

∗Link up to 3 of your most recent posts! Please link to a specific post, not just your blog.

∗All blog niches are welcome here, but please no shops!

∗Stay for the party and check out some of the posts from your fellow party goers! You may just find a new favorite blog to follow!

∗By submitting your post to this link party, you give the hosts permission to use one of the photos from your post in a feature on our sites, on the Everything but the Kitchen Sink Pinterest board, and/or other social media. Proper links to your site will be included.

Let’s Party!

Don’t Buy Oils from Amazon!

Why You Shouldn't Buy Oils from AmazonAfter much research, I personally only use Young Living Essential Oils. Why? Because YL is the ONLY company with the Seed to Seal Promise. This means that YL controls every single step of the way, from planting the seeds (they own their own farms) to harvesting the crop to distilling to bottling to shipping. Young Living is the ONLY essential oil company to have complete control over each of these steps. They even do testing in-house (in addition to independent third-party labs as well).

Other oil companies may use outside farmers or distilleries or bottlers or even unauthorized distributors (like Amazon). This means they don’t exactly know what is happening with their oils. The farmers may use pesticides on their crops or the distilleries or bottlers may clean with bleach (chemicals). Not Young Living. They know that each step is completely chemical free.

So why is there such a high price tag if there aren’t any middle men? It’s because the oils are such a high quality. Gary Young has developed a very precise schedule and routine for each plant and oil, and that doesn’t come without a price. But the benefit is that we as distributors and members get the products directly from Young Living. When we sign up to be a YL Member and Distributor, we sign a statement that we won’t sell the oils for less than the wholesale price (24% off retail). There are business accounts that can purchase at a deeper discount, but they also cannot resell for less than 24% off retail. This is very important. So if you see anything from YL priced below the wholesale rate, run far, far away.

Why can’t you buy on places like Amazon? This is an easy answer: we as distributors are not allowed to sell on sites like this. Anyone who is selling YL products on Amazon is not authorized to do so. So they are not YL Distributors.

Is that really a problem? Yes! I have come across countless examples of people tampering with bottles to make it seem unopened and direct from YL, but in fact, that is further from the truth. It is actually really easy to fake a bottle of YL oil. With an abundance of companies that sell empty 5 and 15 mL bottles, you can easily get an unopened cap for an essential oil bottle. All you have to do is buy a bottle of YL Frankincense, split it up into two (or more) bottles or sub in a lesser-quality or similar smelling oil like Elemi, and then you can add the new top and resell it. If you have actually diluted it, you can sell even more, making it possible to make money from the process.

Amazon vs YL

You can actually see the cap difference in this image, taken by Niccole Perez from We Can Oil It, our team of YL Distributors. The YL cap (Purification) has deeper teeth, whereas the fake Frankincense has almost unnoticeable teeth.

Moral of the story: Do your research with the brand of oils that you purchase. But also, make sure that you understand that you can’t just purchase these products from anywhere. Any Young Living oil should be purchased directly through the Young Living company. I will, from time to time, pass my YL wholesale rate on to friends and family (I purchase for them and they pay me back), but because we have a pre-existing relationship, they can trust that these oils come directly from YL.  You can’t say the same with an online retailer, especially because this is specifically against our Member Policy.

Octopus Tripod Review

Octopus Tripod Review

I have been doing more Periscope broadcasts lately (come find me @dorydoyle), and if there is something I’ve learned, you need to have a steady camera/phone. I have a long-armed adjustable phone holder that clips onto my desk, but sometimes it’s just too bulky if I need to move my broadcasts to other rooms. I was really excited to try out the Octopus Tripod as a more light-weight option.

It is a series of plastic spheres with rubber grippers, so however you want to adjust the three legs, it is can move there. Be careful when you first get it and bend it around, because I pinched my fingers a little bit in between the spheres. Once you first move it around, you will find that you can easily adjust it. When you attach your phone to the top, you may have to readjust the legs so it doesn’t topple over. I love how easily the phone attaches and how secure it is… but you can only have your phone horizontally (it doesn’t stretch enough for a vertical placement, which is tough for Periscope broadcasts). To be honest, it’s not the most well-made of tripods, but it works fine for what is needed from it, especially for the price ($7.99 normally, but on sale for $2.44+$1.55 shipping).

Come check out my video review on YouTube:


Here are some stats from the company:

  • Include a camera lock for camera safely
  • Universal screw allows a variety of cameras to be mounted (make sure that your camera has the screw hole)
  • Retractable holder fits most cellphone (Max width 2.6 inch),for example Iphone 3GS 4 4S
  • Adjustable 360 degrees legs to form perfect shape Material: ABS Plastic + Rubber
  • Dealzip is a registered USPTO trademark No. 86610217


Disclaimer: I received this product in exchange for my honest review. I did not receive any compensation for this post. All opinions are 100% my own.


#octopustripod #ad #review #tomoson

#TBT: Greatest Gifts

Sometimes the greatest gifts are the ones that are free. Last weekend, we were in Cleveland with family, and my cousin Jessie and her daughter flew in from California. She brought me this bag that she had… I’m sure she found it at my grandmother’s house after she passed away years ago. It also had one of Grandma’s scarves in it.

TBT Free Gifts

I don’t know what meant more… that my cousin saved it to give to me (knowing how much it would mean to me) or that my grandmother had kept this cheap bag with a picture of the two of us for all these years. Thank you, Jessie, for the wonderful gift!