Homemade Citrus Sea Salt Body Scrub

paula deens citrus salt body scrubAs I scrolled through Pinterest the other day, I came across a tantalizing citrus salt body scrub how-to and since I had all the ingredients to whip up a batch, I wasted no time snagging a lemon off my neighbor’s tree and hitting the kitchen.

Unlike Paula Deen’s recipe for citrus salt body scrub, I found that more salt is needed than in Paula’s original recipe – almost twice as much, but the final results are phenomenal!

Homemade Citrus Sea Salt Body Scrub
Prep time

Total time


Inexpensive homemade body scrub that is a necessity for any bathroom and makes a great gift :)
Recipe type: Homemade Body Scrub
Serves: 1

  • 1 cup sea salt
  • ½ cup oil {sweet almond, coconut, light olive, or vegetable}
  • ¼ tsp lemon zest
  • ¼ tsp orange zest

  1. Put all the ingredients in a jar with a tight sealing lid and shake until well combined. You could also pour everything into a bowl, mix, and then divide up into jar{s}.
  2. Paula’s Usage Instructions – “To use: Just before showering, swirl ingredients together with your fingertips to mix. Clean body completely and just before exiting shower, apply Citrus Salt Body Scrub to body in a firm circular scrubbing motion with hands or a soft washcloth. Rinse off the mixture and pat body dry with a clean towel.”


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Decorating With Duct Tape

Have you ever see those adorable printed duct tape rolls in the stores and wondered what you would actually use those for?  Well, that’s exactly what I thought when I came across some awesome Spiderman printed duct tape.  Of course, I still bought it, because after all, what could be stronger than Spiderman printed duct tape… Superman? {I’ll save that debate for anther day}

In an attempt to organize my son’s ever-growing collection of books, I decided to grab some boxes I had saved from a trip to Costco and repurpose them into a cute display.  It’s so simple, but looks really neat and will surely encourage your little one to come check out their book shelf more often.

All you need is:

  • Printed or Colored Duct Tape {Available at pretty much any store with a home improvement section, including Walmart}
  • Old {but sturdy} Box

Carefully wrap the duct tape around the box, one layer at a time.  THAT’S IT!

Little Man immediately got excited when he saw his books being “protected by Spiderman”, as he put it. I can’t wait to see what other awesome projects I can find to use pretty duct tape for.

For a list of decor projects you can do around the house that involve duct tape, click here!

Also, make sure you’re following CA Monkey Momma on Pinterest for some of the neatest crafts and most delicious recipes :)

Lowe’s Build & Grow Clinic This Weekend: Shrek Onion Carriage 08/26

As many typical little ones, Little Man has a passion for tools and building things.  A couple months ago, his father even put together a small toolbox for him so he could “practice” fixing things like his toy vehicles and cardboard box forts.

Now that he’s finally old enough, I’m excited that Little Man can finally take part in Lowe’s Build & Grow Clinics. If you’ve ever been in Lowe’s, then you know they are constantly promoting this neat little workshops for children that are completely FREE for families and allow little ones to build and grow with others their age.

Upcoming events include:

Luckily, we live near a Lowe’s that has TONS of openings so signing Little Man up for all these classes was super easy, but most Lowe’s Build & Grow classes fill up fast so make sure you sign up in advance :)

If you’ve got a Lowe’s in  your area and are looking for something fun to do this weekend with your little one, the next Lowe’s Build & Grow class is Sunday, August 26 @ 2:00 PM. The activity is Shrek Onion Carriage and is sure to be a blast!  I’ll make sure to snap a few pics for those who have never been to a Lowe’s Build & Grow class so you can see what it’s like.

Creating Storage Under A Shelf With Baby Food Jars

I recently scored three bags of empty baby food jars from Freecycle and I’ve been putting them to good use all around the house.  The first project I made with them was this handy shelf to help organize and store some of my crafting supplies.  Since it came out so well, I decided I just HAD to share with you guys!

All you need to do to make this handy storage shelf is grab a shelf, some baby food jars, and a screw gun!

First, lay the wood shelf out on a flat surface and decide how many jars you would like attached.  Lay the lids around the board {keep in mind you need room to see everything and space for your hand to reach in and easily unscrew the jars when you need them}.  Using short screws, drill 2 screws into each baby food jar lid.  I started with one, but then quickly realized that this wouldn’t keep the jars from moving when I need to screw and unscrew the jars from the lids.

Rehang the shelf and fill the baby jars with whatever you want to store in them.  I chose crafty stuff, but you can store anything you can fit into the baby food jars – screws, spices, paint, etc.


Simple, right?

What’s the most crafty thing you’ve done this week?  Was it something to beautify the home or just something to make your life a little easier?  Let me know in the comments below!


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FREE Subscription to “Family Fun” Magazine!!

I’m so excited that this freebie is back around!!  I snagged it up a few months ago and have already receive 2 issues =)

Hurry and grab your 20 FREE issues of Family Fun Magazine!!  I had a paid subscription before grabbing this freebie a few months ago and still have every issue because they have the COOLEST craft and game ideas for kids.  You can also find yummy recipes that are extremely kid-friendly and easy to do. Many of the ideas I get for California Monkey Momma come from Family Fun! :P

Don’t worry, this freebie won’t cost you a thing!  No credit card is required – just fill out your shipping information and VOILA, you’re good to go!  Just know that the screen AFTER you sign up will try to have you get a bunch of other stuff, but just click no to them all.


Homemade Bubble Solution

The next time your little ones are in the mood to play with bubbles {When AREN’T they?} and you don’t have any bubble solution on hand, hit your kitchen cabinets and whip up this homemade bubble solution! You only need 3 ingredients:

  • 2-cups water
  • 1/2 cup dish soap
  • 4 tablespoons corn syrup

Mix all the ingredients in a large bowl {I used a Pyrex measuring cup so I could easily pour it into Little Man’s bubble wand} and you’re good to go!  Either use the bubble solution to refill an empty store-bought bubble bottle with wand, or make your own wand and dip it right into the solution.

Little Man had a blast this morning going through almost 2-cups of bubble solution.  He blew bubbles for hours and I still have plenty of bubble solution left to fill his wand container 3 or 4 more times!

So the next time you find yourself in need of some wholesome bubble blowing time, whip up this quick and easy bubble solution recipe for your little ones!  This recipe makes about 3-cups of bubble solution and can be stored for later use in a jar with a lid.

If you like this craft, make sure you pin it on Pinterest!  You can use the handy button below :)


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Top 5 Uses For Lemons {Not Including Lemonade}

I love lemons!  I mean I really love them!  I don’t mind the sour taste and often find myself cutting lemons into quarters just to suck on the tart center.

Since our move last month, I’ve been surrounded by lemons and my neighbor, who has a huge lemon tree, has been feeding me a steady supply of lemons. With all this citrus, I’ve come up with 5 handy uses for lemons that DON’T include lemonade:

All-Purpose Cleaning Spray

I’ve been making this all-purpose cleaner for a couple years now and it’s still the only cleaner I use around my house.  Made with Castile soap, baking soda, vinegar, and of course, lemons, this cleaner is safe for most surfaces {I haven’t found one yet that it’s not good for, but better safe than sorry}.  The lovely lemony scent left after cleaning will keep you wiping all the surfaces in your home!

Laundry Boost

Add about 1/2 cup of lemon juice to your whites for an even brighter white and fresher scent!

Microwave Cleaner

Cut a lemon in half and place cut-side down on a microwave safe plate.  Add about 1 Tablespoon of water to the plate and microwave for 30-45 seconds.  The steam from the water and lemon juice will help tough foods come off with ease.

Sore Throat Relief

I’ve never tried this method, but from what I understand, you cut a lemon in half and roast it over an open flame {use a skewer to hold the lemon and roast until skin becomes golden brown}.  Carefully juice the lemon, add a Tablespoon of honey.  Drink the mixture.  This is an all-natural way to relieve a sore throat and sure to be a tasty way to do so!


Using lemons as colorful centerpieces or in vases around the home really add a splash of color to your rooms and a fresh scent to the air. This is an inexpensive way to decorate and the possibilities are endless. Whether it’s a lemon wrapped in ribbon sitting atop a small shelf in the corner or a bowl/vase full of lemons placed in the center of a table, decorating with lemons is a win-win situation no matter how you look at it.  Plus, you can beautifully display your lemons until you’re ready to use them!

Do you know any helpful uses for lemons when not squeezed into lemonade?  PLEASE SHARE!




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Spring Recipe Inspiration From McCormick

As I’m sure many of you have deduced from the great amount of food posts I put up, I love to cook!  I spend a great deal of my time in the kitchen because I love whipping things up and using my boys as my test subjects.  While many chefs either like to bake or cook, I really have no preference -  I love both!  I guess that’s why I’m so particular about the ingredients I use.

Over the years, I’ve used many different brands of spices and additives in an effort to find high quality ingredients that aren’t expensive.  I’ve come to find that McCormick is usually my brand of choice.  I can usually find great deals on McCormick spices and have always been pleased with the quality that I get from the McCormick name.

I was recently introduced to a neat new addition to the McCormick site – the McCormick Look Book. If you’re ever in need of some culinary inspiration, definitely check out this site!  With a pantry full of McCormick ingredients, McCormick Look Book is a wonderful place to find delicious and artful recipes.  All of the recipes featured are really easy to make and tested to assure they are a culinary treat :)

One of the neatest features about the McCormick Look Book is that you can save your favorite recipes to your personal “My Look Book”.  I love this feature because it’s allowed me to go back and quickly find my favorite McCormick recipes without getting distracted by the rest of the mouth-watering pictures.

With Spring in full bloom and colorful flowers popping up everywhere, I couldn’t resist the urge to bake some rainbow cupcakes for Little Man.  He loves color and I knew he’d get a kick out of a cupcake that was layered with many different colors.

Rainbow cupcakes are super simple to make and you get to use the vibrant food coloring from McCormick. I just whipped up a batch of cupcake batter {I added a little McCormick Pure Vanilla Extract because my family really likes vanilla} and divided it into 4 different bowls.  You can definitely mix the colors to create even more layers, but I wanted to keep it simple.

Create a thin layer of each color and bake as directed.  Easy, huh?

I have to say, these are the cutest cupcakes I’ve ever made! I chose not to ice them because I’m limiting Little Man’s sugar intake, but the possibilities are endless when it comes to toppings!  You could top them with flowers, fruit, or even whipped cream as I did for Daddy who has a super sweet tooth.

If you’re looking for a fun, simple, and delicious recipe to make this Spring, make sure you check out the McCormick Look Book!  You’re sure to find a recipe you love or inspiration to create your own recipe!




I participated in a campaign on behalf of Mom Central Consulting for McCormick. I received product samples and a promotional item to thank me for participating.

Dinosaur Train and Quilting Treasures Lampshade Tutorial

I know I’m a little late on this one, but this past weekend was the end of National Craft Month and I couldn’t let the month end without completing one craft SPECIALLY for the occasion.  That’s why I teamed up with Quilting Treasures to bring you this awesome tutorial on how to make a really neat Dinosaur Train lampshade!

All you need to make your own Dinosaur Train lampshade is:

  • 1/2-yard of 45509 Y Dinosaur Patches fabric {check HERE for a store near you that carries this fabric}
  • Lampshade
  • Craft Glue
  • 1 can of spray adhesive

First you need to trace your lampshade onto a piece of paper.  Transfer your tracing to the back side of the fabric and cut it out.  Spray the lampshade with the spray adhesive and carefully lay the cut fabric around the lampshade, making sure to smooth out any wrinkles that form.  Take the excess edges, tuck them inside the lampshade, and use the craft glue to secure them to the bars that circle the top and bottom of the lampshade.

For more detailed instructions, please click HERE.

From my son’s first reaction when he woke up from his nap and said, “Oh… my… gosh… is that dinosaur lamp for ME?”, I think I can safely say that this project was a big hit.  It didn’t take long at all – I did it while my son was down for his nap – and since I just used glue, no special equipment was needed to make this professional looking lamp!



Isn’t that adorable?!

We’ll be moving again in a few weeks and I’m really excited to finish off Little Man’s room in a dinosaur theme.  He loves the lamp I made for his room and I’m sure the other Dinosaur Train fabric projects I plan to make with the left-over fabric will be great additions to his new room.

What neat projects have you made for your kid’s room recently?  I have quite a few ideas saved up for Little Man’s new room and can’t wait to make some more Dinosaur Train projects!

Please note that I did not received any type of monetary compensation for this review.  I was provided a free sample to ensure an accurate and honest review, but all thoughts and opinions expressed are my own.

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Sprucing Up A Boring Pillow With Simply Spray Upholstery Fabric Paint {Review & How-To Tutorial}

Have you ever had a piece of furniture or bedding that you loved but wish it were a different color?  That’s how my roommates and I have been feeling about the giant beige pillow on the couch in the living room.  While we love how big, fluffy, and comfortable the over-sized pillow is, it just doesn’t go with our current decor.  Everything in the living room is soaked with color so beige stands out like a sore thumb and we’ve often voiced suggestions about how to spruce it up a little and make it match the pillows and walls that surround it.

Because this beige eye sore is something we dealt with daily, it was the absolute first project that popped into my head when Simply Spray asked me what project I would take on if they sent me some Simply Spray Upholstery Paint.

I have to admit, I had my doubts.  I mean, who’s ever heard of SPRAY PAINTING a pillow?  While I was sure that the paint would cover the surface, it was the texture afterwards I was concerned about.  When regular paint dries, it’s hard and brittle.  Simply Spray Upholstery Fabric Ppaint doesn’t do that, though!  Because of the unique formula used by Simply Spray, the resulting painted fabric is soft, not rough.

Here’s how I transformed our boring pillow from beige to burnt orange:

STEP 1 – Place your clean pillow on a protected surface {I used old newspaper}.

Step 2 – Evenly spray the Simply Spray Upholstery Fabric Paint onto the surface. For best results, start and finish OFF of the pillow.

Step 3 – To complete the other side, let the paint dry for a couple hours, flip over the pillow, and spray until your pillow is completely covered with the Simply Spray Upholstery Fabric Paint. I used an entire can of Simply Spray Upholstery Fabric Paint to cover the pillow in this tutorial.

In order to completely let the pillow dry, I let the pillow sit on newspaper for 48-hours before bringing it in and placing it back in the living room.  With any fabric you paint using Simply Spray, make sure you allow at least 72-hours of drying time before washing it.  I’d also recommend washing your fabrics alone for the first time after painting.  This is just a safety precaution to make sure that excess paint doesn’t come off and dye anything you didn’t want colored.

As soon as we brought the newly painted pillow inside, Little Man pounced on and did the full test.  He rubbed his face against it, jumped up and down on it, and even licked his hand and rubbed it on the pillow to see if any paint would come off.  I’m very happy to say that none did:

I’m happy to report that this once boring and bland pillow has quickly become one of our favorites to grab and snuggle with during movies. It goes excellent with the existing decor and really meshes well with the orange walls of the living room.

Simply Spray Upholstery Fabric Paint sells for under $12 a can and is available from a number of online stores. This fabulous fabric spray comes in 14 diverse colors and is sure to work great with any decor!

One of my favorite things about Simply Spray is how versatile it is.  From home decor to children’s costumes, there are hundreds of uses for this easy-to-use fabric spray paint.


Make sure you keep an eye out over the next week as I’ll be posting even more neat and fun projects to do with Simply Spray Upholstery Paint!!  At the end of the week, I’ll even post a giveaway where one lucky winner will win 3 colors of their choice!!  YOU WON’T WANT TO MISS IT!!




Please note that I did not received any type of monetary compensation for this review.  I was provided a free sample to ensure an accurate and honest review, but all thoughts and opinions expressed are my own.

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