Secret Sister Cards

Pin It I pulled out my stamps the other day.  They had been put away for about 4 years.  I don't think I touched them while I was in school, and not while I was homeschooling my kids, and still not while I was without a craft room.  It's been ages.  I am so glad I didn't sell them!  (And so glad hubby didn't decide to when I was gone earlier in the year.  He decided to clean while he was alone at home, and cleaned everyone's stuff but his own. Insert "grrr" here.)


Our neighborhood women have swapped names to do a secret sister thing.  I usually am not really big on this kind of fluffy stuff.  Mostly because I tend to be a worry wart, OCD, or a total procrastinator.  But I came home from Omaha (Grandpa's funeral) to find a beautiful card with a sweet message in it waiting for me.  It was from my secret sister, and I had no idea what was going on!  But I learned it was a little activity planned by our Relief Society to let the women get to know someone a little better.  And by the time I found out what was going on my SS had already left me another cute gift.

I realized I was enjoying them, I mean really, how often do moms get these fun little surprises on their doorsteps?  So, I joined in and have a secret sister, and I can only hope I am as good as the lady who has my name.  She is stopping by weekly!  I can't do weekly, I am not on the ball enough.  But, I decided to make each gift meaningful.

So, first up- make three cute cards.  I can't shell out for the nice ones at the store.  I L.O.V.E. SendOutCards, but my name is on them, so I wouldn't be a very secret sister. I found some super cute paper at Hobby Lobby, and I decided I really needed to let my stamps get some fresh air! 

So, here are the three cards I made, and each will accompany a gift. (We are supposed to do one thing a month for 3 months.  So, my SS is definitely an over-achiever! I don't know how I got so lucky!)

This was the first card.  My secret sister loves to garden, so I got her a pair of gardening gloves and some glycerin hand lotion from Bath & Body Works. I still haven't come up with anything for the next two gifts.  But I still have plenty of time!

All stamps are from The Angel Company- which I just found out went out of business last year.  Makes me sad, I loved their stamps.


Organic Chapstick Activity Days

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 My first official activity since being called to be an Activity Day leader (well, this time around anyway), was hopefully a success.  The girls were bouncing off the walls, but that could have been related to it being almost summer, twenty 10 & 11 year olds in one room, or they really had fun.

We were covering Developing Talents #9 and here is the run down of what we did:

The requirement was to cover personal health, grooming (and modesty) and good nutrition.  So, I used my handy dandy For the Strength of Youth pamphlet to help with that.  It makes it super easy and you don't have to worry about anyone's opinion.  And anything that isn't covered you can just refer them back to their parents! So, I probably spent about 10 minutes going over the topics from FTSOY, asked a few questions, tried to keep it upbeat instead of scary or awkward.

To make it more than just a lecture on those things I combined it with two hands on activities.  I prepped three posters for them to make (you can print the file from the link below).  "Good Nutrition", "Good Health", and "Good Grooming and Modesty".  I used quotes from the booklet for them to attach to the poster, hoping they would read them as they glued.  And I gathered pictures from magazines (New Era's are great for modest girls, and I happened to get a Land's End catalog the day before the activity) that corresponded to the different topics on the posters.  I had them "fix" any modesty issues on clothing (cutting and pasting paper scraps to make sleeves), write "NO" on beer bottles (which I had to get a sports magazine for), things like that.  So in the end the posters were all about what we do or avoid.

I had the girls divided according to flavor choice for their chapstick, and I just took one group at a time into the kitchen to make the chapstick.  It took about 10 minutes per group.  They helped measure, grate the beeswax, prep the tubes, stir while it melted and then hold the tubes while I filled (It's hot, we don't want burns!)

I have printable copies for you of a couple of things.

Chapstick Labels (PDF)
The labels- I printed them on standard address labels. They don't stick well if the ingredients are on the tube, so attach them first.

Chapstick Recipe (PDF)
Chapstick Recipe (Word Doc)
One full batch makes about 10 tubes.  

Printable Poster Pages (Word Doc)
Printable Poster Pages(PDF)
(I just printed it on plain paper then attached it to some cute scrapbook paper.)

You can buy the chapstick tubes or lip gloss tubs from one of these sites:

A few notes in case you want to do this activity:

*you could do it with a large group if they are broken down into smaller groups.  They have to move quickly after you fill the tube so the next girl can get in before the stuff cools and has to be remelted.  So you need some space.

*grating the beeswax is what takes the longest in the whole process.  So, plan on that or do it ahead of time.

*make sure the girls keep the tubes upright after filling.  We capped them to prevent spills, but some of the girls laid theirs sideways and I didn't see it.  So it cooled wonky and they have to remelt them so they can get them to work properly.

*adjust the recipe as needed.  If you can find lip gloss containers just use more coconut oil and less beeswax.  If you live somewhere hot don't change it too much.  Coconut oil melts at 76°, so the more you use the less stable your recipe.  You can use any good oils or butters to replace what I used.  I would suggest cocoa butter as a substitute, almond oil instead of jojoba, and if you need to leave out the shea butter no big deal.

*I use doTerra's essential oils.  Frankly, after a ton of research, they are the ONLY EO's I will use.  They are pure, and I have not yet found any others that are. Please do not use any that are from a local store, most of the brands you can pick up off a shelf have 90% or more fillers, and usually those are alcohol.  You DO NOT want the girls licking that!