Monday, January 21, 2019

Gone...and back again...

Long time, no see!

It has been 5 years.  A lot has happened in this time.  Homeschool Mosaics closed shortly after my last post, so my review life stopped.  I've had one daughter get married.  I now have 3 grandchildren.  I now have a day job to help support my family.  I have achieved a great deal of success in my business.  My husband has had multiple spine surgeries.  I have graduated another child.  I've had health issues. 

I have been missing writing.  Quite a bit.  I haven't crafted (much!) in this time.  I am always trying to keep up with old friends, build stronger relationships with new ones, and to be a blessing to those around me. 

In the coming weeks and months, I hope to share pieces of our journey.  I have known for some time that our experiences are capable of helping others.  Our medical journeys, our financial journeys, our personal journeys.  I hope to be back to regular blogging.  I never expected to walk away and not come back for so long, but I have had to "re-learn" quite a few things in life since my life shifted from a full time at home mom and wife to a "working, care giving, business owning woman, wife, and mother".  That's a lot to balance and shift, and I am far from having all the answers, but I am very clearly better than where I started.  I am hopeful that our journey and lessons learned along the way can benefit others.

Welcome back!  Nice to see you here again! 

Saturday, December 28, 2013

Udderly Smooth-REVIEW

On December 16th, I received a rather unique package in the mail;  An assortment of Udderly Smooth products for a quick review.  As I've shared, I am a bit of a farm girl, and I live in the frozen north, so this one was something I had looked forward to as a challenge of a product that potentially fit my needs. 

Now, to see what they have available, visit their website at
Find them on Facebook at
And on Twitter at

You see, I have a daily routine that includes dates with this fine bovine:

Except that it is now late December.  And I live in Minnesota.  That means that the temps these past few weeks have rarely been above zero, we have snow up to our knees, and we are constantly dealing with moisture on our skin in those temps to do chores and milk by hand.  That means this stuff was put to the test. 

I had used some of the Udderly Smooth a number of years ago at the recommendation of a doctor for a child's nasty diaper rash, but it had been almost 20 years and I really don't remember what the result was of that usage, just that the package was familiar.

To give an idea of the condition of my hands, I've been having to wear non-latex exam gloves to prevent further irritation of chapped hands.  They are cracked and rough, and bumping and rubbing against a dirty udder are not a friendly feeling.  A picture couldn't be taken to really show it, our lighting is too poor. 

Now, the nitty gritty:
This product is made in the USA.  That is pretty important to a lot of folks, so it deserves a good mention.
The product has been around for more than 30 years, also worthy of note to many. 
It can be found in many big name retailers.
Prices will vary according to place of purchase.

I received the hand cream in both 2 and 4 ounce sizes, along with 6 of the sample packets.  I also received a tub of body cream and a tub of foot cream, along with a great coupon.

  • Convenient options for package sizing.  The 2oz. tube is perfect for a coat pocket or purse!  The larger 4oz. works great for the counter/night stand/desk locations. 
  • The packaging makes EASY dispensing.  As long as you don't have an overly eager child squeezing for all they can, the tube doesn't seem to allow large bursts of cream to come out at once.
  • The ingredient list is almost identical to the udder balm I have from the farm store (as the company suggests in their promotions) with only slight variations in formulation and a few ingredients that are not identical.  The entire ingredient list is easily found on their website!

  • For those who want all natural stuff on their skin, there are some ingredients that may be less than desired. 
  • There is also "fragrance", which can bother some.  Several in my house commented when I'd used it because they noticed the fragrance without even seeing me use it (we are exceptionally sensitive to smells in our house, so this is NOT likely a problem for everyone!
Personal Experience:
 I lean towards the more natural things for preferences and wasn't all that excited by the ingredient list.  Not that there is anything I disagree with in particular, but I like "simple".  Meaning the fewer ingredients, the better.  If I don't know exactly what an ingredient is by reading the name, I wonder if I should be using it.  I often use coconut oil and beeswax to make my own lotion bars.  Having a soft, flowing hand cream was a bit of a variation that was nice to have.  I used the entire 2 ounce tube in less than 10 days and found that while my hands didn't heal from being chapped (who can truly expect them to when the temperature is -20f and you have to get them wet regularly?!?!), it did help to maintain them.  My hands did NOT get any worse, and the areas that are not damaged are soft and smooth as the company suggests. 

For those who want something to use "off the shelf", this is a great product.  For those who are concerned about ingredients, it may be something they'd rather pass on, but I am not an expert, nor a chemist, and I know this worked for me.   As with all products?  It may not work for everyone the same, and your experience may be different, but if you need to work on your hands, I'd say give this stuff a try!

If you want to learn more about the experiences of my Mosaic Reviews friends, check out their reviews in the linky at the bottom of this page:

Friday, November 29, 2013

Gratitude Challenge-catching up post...November 29th

To give you a bit of a background, my husband has had some major health challenges for a few years.  We have been spinning our wheels working with an inadequate treatment plan for a while, and fighting and hoping to get a chance to get new eyes on his case and give opinions of how to improve.  We finally got it.  We had 12 days' notice to travel almost 400 miles to see doctors and had to arrange for home, family, children and animals to be cared for in our absence.  What was supposed to be a 2 day trip became 5.  Life was a bit overwhelming and I am still not recovered, but coming up for air and trying to get back into the swing of things before our holiday season takes over with all of my business obligations...

So here is the list as I saved it:
Day 7: Thankful for a vehicle to get us where we have to go at a moment's notice.
Day 8:  Having a small farm to be able to raise many of our own foods.
Day 9:  Children who are innocent and don't know all of the hard things going on in this world yet.
Day 10:  Books.  One can never have enough knowledge, and books keep that knowledge at your fingertips.
Day 11:  My electric blanket.  I get cold, and it makes life more bearable.
Day 12:  A full calendar to keep me busy and prevent me from being bored.
Day 13:  Dirty dishes.  I loathe them, but they tell a story of a well fed family.
Day 14:  Fur-friends.  Dogs, cats, cows.  All of them bring something special to our family, and their fuzzy winter fur makes them lovable and cuddly.
Day 15:  Social media.  It connects me to all of these amazing people.
Day 16: Events that bring new customers to my business.
Day 17: Thirty-One business that provides me all the functional bags I need for travel and daily life.
Day 18: Buffets.  When traveling, it is nice to have an option to eat something, no matter what your tastes.
Day 19: Doctors who truly are attentive to their patients.
Day 20: The Internet and phones that allow us to keep in touch with friends and family while away from home.
Day 21:  Gracious women who are understanding and kind when you have to cancel your plans to meet family needs.
Day 22: My own bed.  There is something comforting about your own bed after traveling, no matter how bothersome it may be.
Day 23: Cupboards with food in them.
Day 24:  Warm winter clothing.
Day 25:  New beginnings and blessings. 
Day 26:  Friends who are there no matter what they think of your situation.
Day 27:  A home where children laugh, make messes, make memories.
Day 28:  A family that is dedicated to each other, through thick or thin.
Day 29:  My Lilla Rose business that provides opportunities to meet amazing women while providing some extra income for my family. 

Join us with the Gratitude Challenge hosted by my friend, Brenda over at Quiet Pandemonium

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Gratitude Challenge 2013- November 6th

A simple thankfulness today.  Technology.  Being able to talk to friends and family in different time zones, cross state or cross country or half way around the world in real time is a huge blessing. 

Hop on over to Quiet Pandemonium to see what you can be thankful for and link up your own posts.

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Gratitude Challenge 2013- November 5th

Today is simple.  I am thankful for big, comfy blankets.  I over extended myself physically yesterday and the piles of big, comfy blankets that help keep me warm and relax those tired muscles are priceless.

If you'd like to join the Gratitude Challenge, hop on over to Quiet Pandemonium and share your thoughts with the rest of our friends. 

Monday, November 4, 2013

Gratitude Challenge 2013- November 4th

Today I am grateful for the quiet time spent in the barn in the early morning with no sounds except for the animals.  The cats purring, the cow munching on her hay, the chickens clucking no and then.  For the farm girl in me, there is nothing more relaxing and peaceful.  There are no pictures that can convey that feeling of total relaxation and comfort.  Just peace.

If you'd like to join the Gratitude Challenge, hop on over to Quiet Pandemonium and use the link up there or just take the time to read some other gratitude posts.

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Gratitude Challenge 2013- November 3rd

Today, I am grateful for my faith.  This picture represents a small piece of that faith that was passed down by some very dedicated grandmothers.  Those women had faith that didn't get hidden in my life.  Another copy of this picture hung in my grandmother's kitchen, always a reminder to pray and give thanks. I have a previous post about the details of this particular piece of artwork, should you be interested.

Thank you, Brenda, for hosting Gratitude Challenge 2013 over at Quiet Pandemonium.  My readers and guests are welcome to join us and check out the other Gratitude Challenge posts.