Scented Sidewalk Chalk

Do your kids love to play with chalk, but get their hands really messy while they are at it? You can cut down on the mess a bit by making your own chalk in deodorant containers. Homemade retractable chalk is easy to use and fun to play with! And since we love essential oils, we decided to make our chalk scented to enhance the sensory activity for the kids.

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To be honest, this project has had a couple of flops, but we kept great notes on our tests so you can learn from our mistakes.

The idea behind making the chalk is simple:

  1. Coat the deodorant containers with petroleum jelly so the chalk doesn’t stick to the container.
  2. Mix 1/4 cup (60 ml) cold water with food coloring and essential oils.
  3. Add 1/2 cup (100 g) plaster of paris to the cold water. Mix, then pour into the containers.
  4. Let sit until completely hardened (about 4 hours).
  5. Twist up and have fun!

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Now for the things we learned:

  • It is a good idea to coat the inside very thoroughly. You want every area of the inside to have a layer of petroleum jelly. We used about 1 Tbsp. (15 ml) of jelly per deodorant container.
  • Use disposable cups/utensils to create the mixture. Once this stuff hardens, it is a huge pain to get off dishes and utensils. And, honestly, it’s probably not a good idea to pour it down your drain.
  • To get a vibrant color, you will need a lot of food coloring/dye. The water will need to look pretty dark, because the white plaster of paris lightens the mixture quite a bit.
  • Plaster of paris can be harmful if inhaled, so be very careful about not creating dust. It is also a good idea to wear a dust mask and do the mixing and pouring outside where it is well ventilated. The mixture also gets pretty hot, so don’t touch it with your bare hands.
  • Once the plaster of paris and water mix, you don’t have a lot of time before it starts to harden. So work fast, and do only one deodorant container/color at a time. If you are doing multiple colors, you can do some prep work (coat the insides with petroleum jelly, color and scent the water), but don’t mix the plaster of paris with the water until you are ready to quickly mix and pour.
  • When pouring in the mixture, you may be tempted to stack it up on the top until it looks like it might overflow. Don’t do it. In fact, it is a good idea to only fill to just below the lip of the container so the chalk mixture has a little space to expand before reaching the top (and the end of the petroleum jelly coverage).
  • When trying to twist up the chalk initially, it will stick a little bit. First, squeeze the sides of the container to loosen the edges. Then, put your fingers on the inside of the twist dial on the bottom, and use the little groves inside as traction. Apply firm pressure as you twist, but be careful not to break the middle piece inside. Once the chalk is loosened initially, it should be easy to twist up and down like you normally would.

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Hopefully we haven’t scared you away from doing this project now that you have read all of our notes and cautions. This really is an easy project, and the kids had a blast playing with the chalk once it was done.

You can also do this with lip balm containers for smaller sticks to use on chalkboards. In fact, you should have a little mixture left over in your disposable cup so that you can fill 1 large deodorant container and a few lip balm containers with the recipe below.

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Scented Sidewalk Chalk

  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Print

Ingredients & Supplies:

  • 1 Deodorant Container (and a few Lip Balm Dispensers, if desired)
  • 1 Tbsp. (15 ml) petroleum jelly (per deodorant container)
  • 1 disposable cup and plastic fork (per color)
  • 1/4 cup (60 ml) cold water (per deodorant container)
  • 5–10 drops essential oil (per deodorant container)
  • Food coloring (you can also use liquid watercolors or tempura paint)
  • 1/2 cup (100 g) plaster of paris (per deodorant container)

Instructions:

  1. Coat the inside of the deodorant container with petroleum jelly. Be very generous, and make sure to apply the jelly everywhere inside, especially the bottom. We used about 1 Tbsp. (15 ml) or more of petroleum jelly per deodorant container. It might help to twist up the bottom piece so you can thoroughly coat it, then lower it back down to coat the sides and middle piece.
  2. Next, pour the cold water into a disposable cup, and add the food coloring and essential oils. It is fun to coordinate the scent of the essential oil with the color of the chalk (e.g., lemon essential oil for yellow chalk, orange essential oil for orange chalk, peppermint essential oil for green or blue chalk, etc.). If you are attempting to do multiple colors and deodorant containers, do steps 1–2 in bulk, but do the rest of the steps for only one container at a time.
  3. Note: If you have a dust mask, put it on for this step. Also, move the project outdoors to finish so you are in a well-ventilated area. Very gently, spoon out 1/2 cup (100 g) of plaster of paris, and add it to the cold water solution. Be very careful not to create dust or inhale any dust. Once the plaster of paris and cold water mix, it will get hot—so don’t touch it with your bare hands until it hardens.
  4. Using a plastic fork, stir the mixture until it is well combined and the color is thoroughly mixed in. You can still add food coloring at this stage, but be quick; you really don’t have a lot of time before it starts to harden.
  5. Pour the chalk mixture into the deodorant container until just below the lip.
  6. Let sit at room temperature for at least 4 hours to harden completely.
  7. Once hardened, squeeze the sides of the container to help loosen the chalk. Then put your fingers on the inside of the twist dial on the bottom of the container, and use the inside grooves as traction. Apply firm pressure as you twist, but be careful not to break the middle piece inside. Once the chalk is loosened initially, it should be easy to twist up and down like you normally would.
  8. To use, twist up and get creative!


Update 4/19/17: We now sell these round twist up containers that would work well for this project.

Keep Your Kids Entertained with This Fun Craft!

Make your own beeswax yarn strips for a fun sensory activity for your children. These strips are fun to bend into shapes to create a picture or sculpture. They also make a great quiet activity to take with you on the go.

Yarn-Art

Flexible Beeswax Yarn Art

  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Print

Ingredients & Supplies:

  • 2 cups (144 g) beeswax pellets
  • 2 Tbsp. (30 ml) jojoba oil
  • Crock pot
  • Colored yarn

Instructions:

  1. Melt the beeswax in a small crock pot or double boiler.
  2. Once the wax is melted, add the jojoba oil.
  3. Cut your yarn to the desired length (9 inches [23 cm] is a good starting point).
  4. Add the yarn to the melted beeswax-jojoba mixture.
  5. Once the yarn is completely covered in wax, remove the yarn from the crock pot using a toothpick or bamboo skewer, and lay out in individual strips to dry. (We laid our strips on a plastic grocery bag.)
  6. Once the wax dries, have fun creating pictures and sculptures with your waxed yarn strips!

Extra Idea:

If desired, you can add essential oil to the wax mixture for an additional sensory experience. Start with 2–4 drops, and then add more depending on your preference for scent.

Simply Natural Lip Balm

Treat your lips right with this natural essential oil lip balm. The lip balm includes only all-natural ingredients and will leave your lips feeling soft and refreshed!

Simply Natural Lip Balm

  • Servings: 8–12
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Print

Ingredients & Supplies:

Instructions:

  1. Place beeswax pellets and cocoa butter in a heat-proof glass measuring cup.
  2. Melt the oils in the microwave or on the stovetop in a pan filled with an inch of simmering water (creating a double boiler). Heat until completely melted.
  3. Add jojoba oil to the melted oils, and continue to heat until all the oil is incorporated.
  4. Allow to cool for a minute, and then stir in essential oils.
  5. Pour the mixture into your lip balm containers of choice. You may find it easier to use a small dropper or small funnel to transfer the mixture into the small containers without spilling on the side.
  6. Allow mixture to cool and solidify before using.

Extra Idea:

Create fun labels for your lip balm creations using our 2″ x 4″ Blank White Labels. Set up your labels so that two labels fit side-by-side on each 2″ x 4″ label; then cut the label in half after printing so that you have two labels that each measure 2″ x 2″. This size fits perfectly on our White Lip Balm Dispensers. Our .5″ x 1.75″ Blank White Labels also fit perfectly on our 1/4 oz. Lip Gloss Containers.

Essential Oil Transfer on Easter Eggs

Did you know you can use essential oils to transfer prints from a laser printer or copier onto fabric, wood, or other materials? This easy method is a lot of fun and opens up many possibilities for personalized gifts with a really neat effect! We decided to try this method when decorating Easter eggs, and it worked pretty well!

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As you can see in the above picture, the transfer works better on the light colored eggs. `The egg right behind the bottle also has an ink transfer on it (green and red), but the darker background makes it more difficult to see.

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Start by gathering your materials. You will need an image, design, or text (about 1/2 inch to 2 inches in size works best for Easter eggs). Use a program like Microsoft Paint or Photoshop to lay out your words or design. For this process, dark, solid text and pictures work best, as the image will fade a bit during the transfer. This can lead to some really cool vintage or antiqued looks when finished but can appear too faded if you choose something with light colors or faint gradients. When you have the design looking how you want it, select the design, and use the program’s flip or rotate tools to flip the design horizontally so you have a mirror-image of the design. Print the design onto normal copier paper using a laser printer (or copy it on a toner-based copier). Note: Be certain your printer or copier uses toner. This method doesn’t work with inkjet or wax systems.

Other materials you will need include a hard-boiled egg, tape, a popsicle stick (or other hard, straight-edged object), a cotton swab, a small glass bowl (we used a shot glass), and orange essential oil.

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Cut out your design, leaving a little room for the tape. Place your design where you want it (face down so the ink touches the egg), and tape it to the egg. Because the surface of the egg isn’t flat, you will need to pinch and cut the paper as needed to get the ink to lay as flat as possible against the egg. This part of the process is a lot easier when working with materials that can lay flat like wood or fabric.

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Add a few drops of orange essential oil to your small glass bowl or shot glass. You only need a couple drops per design; so start with less, and add more as needed.

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Dip the cotton swab in the essential oil, and rub the oil onto the back of your design. Your design will show through the paper as you rub the oil on.

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Next, use the popsicle stick to rub completely over the back of the printed design. This presses the toner onto the egg, so you need to be fairly firm; but don’t press down so hard that you crack the egg or tear through the paper. Be certain to rub over all parts of the design. If you have a larger or more complicated design, you may want to apply oil over a small part of it, rub over that part to transfer it, and then move on to the next area to help prevent missing any part of the design.

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Once you are certain that you have firmly rubbed over the entire design (you can always try peeking under the paper or do a second coat of oil and rub again if you aren’t sure), remove the paper, and see your result.  If you missed an area, you may be able to re-position and tape the paper back to the egg and try again; but it is much easier to get it right the first time. Once it looks good, you can use a blow dryer to help the ink set. For the eggs, you can also just let the ink dry, but using a hot blow dryer really helps set the ink when you are doing an essential oil transfer on wood or fabric.

Essential Oil Transfer

  • Difficulty: Moderate
  • Print

Ingredients:

  • A laser printer or copier (Be certain your printer or copier uses toner. This method doesn’t work with inkjet or wax systems.)
  • Hard-boiled egg
  • Cotton swabs
  • Small glass bowl or Shot Glass
  • Orange essential oil
  • Popsicle stick or other straight-edged, rigid object
  • Blow dryer

Instructions:

  1. Use a program like Microsoft Paint or Photoshop to lay out your words or design. For this process, dark, solid text and pictures work best, as the image will fade a bit during the transfer. This can lead to some really cool vintage or antiqued looks when finished but can appear too faded if you choose something with light colors or faint gradients. When you have the design looking how you want it, select the design and use the program’s flip or rotate tools to flip the design horizontally so you have a mirror-image of the design. Print the design onto normal copier paper using a laser printer (or copy it on a toner-based copier).
  2. Place the print of the design over the egg (or other material) with the printed side against the egg (face-down). Use scotch or masking tape to hold the print in place. You may need to pinch or cut the paper to get the ink to lie as flat as possible against the surface of the egg.
  3. Place several drops of orange oil in a small glass bowl or shot glass (the amount you’ll need will depend on the size of the transfer). Start with a couple drops, and add more as needed.
  4. Dip a cotton swab into the orange oil, and then swab the oil over the back of the printed design a little at a time (the design will become visible through the paper as you swab the oil over it).
  5. Use a popsicle stick to rub completely over the back of the printed design. This presses the toner onto the egg, so you need to be fairly firm; but don’t press down so hard that you crack the egg or tear through the paper. Be certain to rub oil over all parts of the design. If you have a larger design, you may want to apply oil over a small part of it, rub over that part to transfer it to the egg, and then move on to the next area to help prevent missing any part of the design.
  6. Peek under the paper, or carefully peel back one corner or side of the design to ensure you didn’t miss transferring any part of it. If you did, carefully replace the paper in the same spot, and rub over the missing areas to transfer them. When finished, remove the paper and tape from the egg.
  7. Use a blow dryer on its hottest setting to blow hot air over the design to help fuse it onto the egg.

Extra Ideas:

  1. The things you can do with this method are virtually endless! Use this method to create personalized aprons, totes, gift tags, gift bags, stockings, game/play mats, t-shirts, ribbons, and whatever else you can think of!
  2. This method can also be used to transfer prints onto wood with some neat effects, as the transfer will transfer around the grain and texture of the wood.

Make & Take Class Idea: Essential Oil Milk Bath Fizzers

Have you tried hosting an essential oil spa night? A spa night is a fun and relaxing way to introduce your friends to essential oils. This spa night includes a make-and-take recipe that allows your friends to experience the essential oils again at home.

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Ideas for Teaching This Class

You can simply enjoy a foot bath as you sit and chat, or you can make it into an essential oil class. If you teach about essential oils, try to keep the lesson to around 15–20 minutes. Here are a few topics you can teach about:

Preparing for This Class

The idea behind this class is to allow your attendees to soak their feet in a milk bath while you teach a short lesson on essential oils or just sit and chat. Keep a Modern Essentials book close by in case you need to reference it to answer questions. After the footbath and short lesson, show your attendees how to make the milk bath fizzers with essential oils, and allow them time to make their own that they can take home with them.

For the footbath portion of the class, you will need to gather the following items:

  • Towels (any size will work)
  • Small foot basins
  • Prepared small Milk Bath Fizzers (see recipe below)

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Essential Oils for Romance

Did you know that essential oils can enhance a romantic mood? Because people are strongly impacted physically and emotionally by scents, the aromas of some essential oils are great aphrodisiacs. But essential oils can help with more than providing a lovely scent.

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Essential Oils for Romance

Much of the following information is from the Modern Essentials Personal Usage Guide section. Keep in mind, however, that if an essential oil is unappealing to you or your spouse, don’t use it. Needless to say, it will distract from rather than enhance your romantic experience.

Arousing Desire:
An aphrodisiac is a substance used to stimulate feelings of love or sexual desire. Many books on aromatherapy tout the aphrodisiac qualities of a number of oils. Perhaps an aphrodisiac to one individual may not be to another. The most important factor is to find an oil that brings balance to the mind and body. A balanced individual is more likely to extend love.

Some oils that are known to be aphrodisiacs include sandalwood, ylang ylang, rose, jasmine, Blend for Women, cinnamon, ginger, and clary sage.

Another oil that may be worth trying because it is a warming oil and may help improve circulation is black pepper. A single drop can help enhance a massage blend. Make sure to always dilute this oil though.
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Get Organized with an Essential Oil Notebook!

Do you get a little overwhelmed with essential oils? Do you have oil bottles and information scattered around the house and aren’t really sure what to do with all of it? Maybe it’s time to get better organized! To help you, we have a couple ideas.

First, gather your essential oils, and create a designated essential oil station (or stations if needed). You can easily keep your bottles organized with essential oil cases, racks, or boxes. Make sure that all of your bottles are clearly labeled. If you mixed your own blends, you can use blank labels to help you identify them.

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Second, you can create an essential oil notebook to keep all of your essential oil information in one place. We suggest getting a 3-ring binder and including the below sections and pages. We have designed a few different files that you are welcome to print off and include in your notebook. Here are the sections we have included:

Daily Routine Page

Write down your daily routine for using essential oils, taking supplements, exercising, etc. so you can remember it. This page can easily be laminated and written on with dry erase markers if you prefer. You can also hang it on the fridge or another often viewed spot to help you remember what you need and when. Print off one for each family member, and include their name at the top.

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Contacts

Keep information about your essential oil contacts in one place. You can include names and contact information for companies where you buy the oils, companies where you get essential oil accessories (like AromaTools™!), people in your upline or downline, or others you may contact with health-related or essential oil–related questions.

Essential Oil Inventory

In this section, we included pages that will not only help you keep track of the oils you have on hand but also supplements and other products. There is also a wishlist page where you can write down oils or accessories that you want to get when you place your next order. On the wishlist page, you can include a note about where to buy the item, how many you want, or who you are buying it for. The travel checklist page is a way to help you remember your favorite oils to take when traveling so you don’t forget when you are packing your bags.

Essential Oil Usage Journal

This page is designed to help you remember your (or others’) experiences with essential oils. Did your son have an ear infection and you used essential oils? What worked? What didn’t? Keeping a usage journal can help you learn how essential oils work for you so that you can be better prepared if another similar situation occurs.

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Essential Oil Recipes

This section includes pages for diffuser blends, cooking recipes, cleaning recipes, body care recipes, and other recipes. Write down the recipes you like so you can remember them later. You can even print off recipes and include the pages in your binder. There are a ton of recipes out there; so when you find ones you like, you’ll want a place to keep them organized.

You may want to include this information page about cooking with essential oils. It has a lot of great tips on how to incorporate essential oils in everyday recipes.

Essential Oil Information

The Essential Oil Information pages allow you to make notes for each essential oil or oil blend. The page can help you remember where you bought the essential oil, how much it cost, uses for the oil, and the contents contained in the blend. This is especially useful if you like to create your own blends because it will help you remember how you made it and its purpose. At the bottom of the page, you can even rate the blend on a 5 star scale. Print off as many pages as you need. If you have a lot of notes for one essential oil or blend, you may want to include a note page (see below) and put it with this section.

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We also suggest using page protectors to include other information such as brochures, handouts from classes, charts, or other items such as the following:

Essential Oil Notes

This lined page helps you keep your notes in one place. We suggest printing this page double sided and including a few in your binder. If you tend to write a lot of notes, you can include a notebook instead. Use this section when you attend classes and gather information, but make sure to transfer relevant information to other sections such as the Recipes section or the Essential Oil Information pages.

Files Available for Download

We have created 4 different designs and some simple refill pages if you wish to save printer ink for the files that you tend to print multiple copies of.

We hope you are able to utilize some of our ideas to help you get your essential oils and information organized this year!

Homemade Chest and Throat Salve

Be prepared for the cold winter months with this Homemade Chest and Throat Salve! This salve incorporates pure essential oils that have been studied for their abilities to help support clear breathing and help strengthen the immune system. Just rub this salve on the chest and on the bottoms of the feet, cover the feet with socks, and breathe a little easier this winter!

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Salt Painting with Essential Oils

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This fun art project is not only helpful for keeping kids entertained, but it also helps build fine motor skills as kids learn how to draw up the colored water using a pipette and release the liquid onto their salt image. Get creative, and have fun while enjoying the wonderful scents of essential oils!

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Deodorizing Toilet Spray


“All living things eat, so everyone poops!” – Everyone Poops by Taro Gomi

Now that we are clear on that subject, let’s talk about how to make it a pleasant experience! This Deodorizing Toilet Spray is meant to be used before the elimination process begins. When you spray it in the toilet, the ingredients create a film on top of the water. This creates a barrier and fresh scent on top of the water so as you do your business it traps the smell beneath the surface. The food coloring is optional but is a nice reassurance that it works.

Some great essential oil blend recipes for a toilet spray include the following:

Sweet Citrus:
5 drops lemongrass
5 drops bergamot
5 drops grapefruit
Rosemary Mint:
4 drops lavender
4 drops peppermint
4 drops rosemary
2 drops melaleuca
Ocean Breeze:
5 drops cedarwood
4 drops lemon
2 drops rosemary

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