How to make a DIY Relaxation Gift Basket

This tutorial combines so many of my obsessions. Mason Jars, DIY beauty products, pretty desserts, candles and handmade gift giving!

This gift basket includes a Sugar Scrub, Red Velvet cupcake dessert, a little ambiance and some entertainment!

I was in a silly mood and made two videos. One that is a skit inspired by the gift basket and the other is an actual tutorial for the basket! I hope you likey!

 


Materials

Sugar Scrub:

organic cane sugar
coconut oil
2 tbsp olive oil
mason jar

Dessert:
Red Velvet Cupcakes made from a box mix
Betty Crocker Buttercream icing
mason jar

Ambiance
Electric tea light (Target)
Rice
Mason Jar

Basket (dollar Store)
Burlap scraps (Joanne’s Fabric)
The Devil Wears Prada DVD (Target $5.00)
Raffia (Joanne’s Fabric)
Tags (scrapbook paper)

 

For more tutorials please subscribe to my new blog at theinspiredcafe.com!

Introducing…

Finally after over a month of work I can finally officially introduce to you theinspiredcafe.com!!! Woot woot! I am SO EXCITED about this move to wordpress.org. If you are wondering what wordpress.org means, it really just means that you host your own site and you are allowed to accept advertising on your blog. One of my goals is to grow this blog and reach a lot of people as well as be a contributor financially to my household.

The past four weeks have taught me a lot. I had to figure out stylesheets, html coding, CSS and other wordpress features in order to make my blog look the way I wanted it to. It still needs some tweaking but I’m excited with the progress I have made. I’ve learned that if I keep pushing and researching and trying I will eventually make a break through and reach my goal. It was a lot of late nights and TONS of questions to my very busy web developer husband. I really appreciate all of his help and patience. I’m so excited to see what will happen in the future!

You might be wondering about the name change. Well in order to have a .com site I needed to think of a new name since inspired.com was already taken. I was heartbroken at first but after days of thinking I came up with “The Inspired Cafe”. You know what? It’s really a good fit for what I want this blog to be. I love coffee and coffee houses. I love when people come together and creative juices start flowing. That’s what happens at cafes. So I think it’s a perfect name!

I hope that all of my subscribers will take the leap with me over to theinspiredcafe.com. I have some new blog posts and TONS planned out for the rest of the year!

Hope to see you there!

God Bless,

Dija Henry

Healthy Picnic food

We finally took our traditionally trip out to the lake! This year we went to northern Indiana. Would you believe you can find white sandy beaches in the midwest? I didn’t realize that I could have driven only 1.5 hours away from my alma mater (Purdue University) and relaxed on the beach. Embarrassingly obvious I know but not being from Indiana I was at a disadvantage with certain things. Nonetheless, we have discovered several beaches around Michigan and Indiana that are quite lovely.

Did I mention our vacation lasted only 8 hours? Since we are on a tight (super tight creating a muffin top) budget we decided that a one day trek would be easy on  our wallets but satisfying to the kiddos. We were right. It was relaxing but we were all ready to go home by the time the life guards got off duty that evening.

The only stressful part was what to bring for snacks? My kids and hubby have restricted diets so it was challenging. This is what I came up with:

I finally had a chance to try this idea from Pinterest. Let me tell you IT REALLY WORKS! That spinach was crisp and cold.

This chicken took a little finagling. I didn’t want to use mayonnaise because we had a 2 hour trip and more importantly my kids have egg allergies. Most of the picnic chicken recipes I found were for fried chicken but I wanted something healthier. So I came up with this:

cut up chicken from Costco rotisserie chicken

ever so slightly brown it in some olive oil and 2 tsp of curry powder

take the chicken out of the pot and in a bowl…

add a cup of grapes sliced in half

Slice and dice a small apple

mix together and voila! After a few hours in the cooler everything melded nicely together and no worries of rotten mayonnaise.

(by the way we had PLENTY of ice in the cooler. It was still cold at the beach)

Other snacks included water, Annie’s individually packaged snack crackers, grapes, apples, tortilla chips

Hope you have a blessed one!

Parting the Clouds of Your Soul

Photographer: Jay Brazel

I’ve been feeling so blue for the past few months. It has been an unexpectedly hard year. I suppose most hard times are unexpected. We’ve dealt with serious illness, lost income, ministry challenges, car accidents, injury, etc. Stuff that everyone deals with. It’s just that we haven’t had a break and it started to really get to me. It was getting to my mind, my thoughts, my outlook on life, confidence in myself and my daily attitude. I was frustrated because I generally do struggle with feeling down alot and I didn’t need these extra stressors in my life.

A few weeks ago I just broke down. I couldn’t take the stress. I’ll admit. I threw a HUGE pity party! Attendance: me. Games: BYOT (Bring your own Tissue)

That Sunday when we woke up late for church and decided to head to our sister church’s service instead since we could make that one relatively on time. Boy was it a blessing! I felt like the message was for me. The pastor spoke about dealing with the twin realities of God’s goodness and life’s troubles. Ever struggle with that one?

What I learned was that I was focusing too much on my circumstances and less on who God is. I KNEW that we’re not supposed to do that. I KNEW that God is good not matter what… but why was it so hard in the midst of these trials to trust Him? I have to admit I was asking God “why this was happening?” a lot. Along with the good ole’ “What was He trying to teach me?”. I happen to think that it’s okay to ask God “why” as long as you really want to learn from the answer.

Here’s the thing I learned:

1. Who God is IS NOT DEFINED by Life’s Circumstances

in other words…

2. God is who He says He is, not who we think He is
3. We can bless God in the midst of challenges because we are enthralled with the beauty of who God is and not because of what is happening around us. He never changes.

So I got my answer and I’m thus (yes I said thus) grateful for these past challenges. It showed me that even though the rainstorm and the clouds hover over us, the secret to keeping Sonshine in our hearts is to bless God for who He is and not not focus on the ever changing circumstances of life.

I still have to remind myself every day (every hour of the day) to bless God when my feelings dip, but it is freeing to know I can coax a lighter heart into my chest by refocusing on who God is.

Here is the link to that sermon.

God Bless

What I’ve been up to

Hello!
I hope that you are doing well today. I wanted to post really quick to let you know that I have been MIA because I’m working on redesigning my site and moving over to wordpress.org (as well as recovering from being rear ended twice in 3 weeks, having a sick kid, and getting sick myself.) Excuses Excuses, right?

So far I have moved over to wordpress.org but still am working on the redesign. It’ is taking a while since I’m not a programmer thus causing me to spend lot’s of time researching, asking my programmer husband lot’s of annoying questions and such. So far I’m learning a lot and feel very inspired to keep moving forward.

I’m also working on doing something I’ve been wanting to do since 2006 which is start selling handmade items online! I’ve been selling handmade cards here and there over the years but haven’t taken it seriously until recently. This fall I will have a little more time during the day as my oldest is in 3rd grade, next is in 1st grade and my little one will be in pre-school a few days a week. I’m pretty excited/nervous/excited about being able to spend time on something I’ve been wanting to do for a while. (I forgot to add blessed.)

I’m hoping that when the construction (or re-construction) dust settles I can be more focused and provide a better quality blog for my readers.

I will post when I can here however, I want to get the other site up ASAP so I need to focus on that. I have so many ideas to blog about and share which is totally motivating me to get this blog move finished!