FF: S.S. Soap Co

Happy Friday!  I’m thrilled to share another creative friend with you today!  Stephanie is passionate about soap!  She makes some fabulous handmade natural bath & beauty & cold process soaps, as well as a big heart.

Why are you passionate about soap and being creative?

I am a dental hygienist part time now. I love my job and being able to educate people on making healthy choice that not only effect their mouths but their whole bodies. I’m pretty interested in prevention and I try to stay on top of what I put into and onto my body. A little after I started working as a dental hygienist I started becoming more interested in what all the chemicals in my food and body products were. I wanted to be healthy and as organic as possible. Soon after my fiance and I purchased our first home I began organic gardening, both ornamentals and food. I also began purchasing natural skin care products, which turned out where not so “natural” after all. I was mortified! So I went on a mission. I did tons of research online and checked every book out of the library I could find. My gardening & soap actually started to blend a little, a lot of my herbs and flowers end up in my soaps and other products. Then my fiance’s mom was diagnosed with breast cancer and had to go through extensive radiation. Most soaps were way too harsh on her skin. She became my biggest fan and in the beginning of this year with the persuasion of friends and family I opened my etsy shop. I love knowing exactly what is in my food and bath and body products.

Do you have a favorite soap scent you’ve created?

I think my favorite scent is probably Vanilla Pomegranate or Oatmeal Cookie.

What exciting future plans do you have for your work?

Right now all of my products are made from my home, but I think maybe one day I would like to open a shop of my own. Even just being able to do this full time would be amazing. I get a great feeling knowing I created something I think someone else will truly enjoy.

Do you have any tips/inspiration to share?

As for tips.. If you love something I truly feel that is the universes way of telling you that you should be doing it. Just go for it and put your heart and soul into it. If you love what you do and put that love into your work it will pay off.

You can connect with Stephanie on Etsy, Facebook, Twitter and her blog.

Thank you, Stephanie! I love how you’ve taken a problem and turned it into a passion!  I look forward to seeing where your soaps take you! 

Peanut Butter Party

Peanut butter is a fabulous food that adds lots of fun to other foods!  Although not everyone can eat it, for those who can here are some yummy recipes I can’t wait to try!

Breakfast:

Peanut butter pancakes, peanut butter banana scones, banana oat breakfast cookies, peanut butter waffles.

Lunch:

PBJ blossom sandwiches, oatmeal peanut butter energy bars, nut butters, reindeer faces.

Dinner:

Thai coconut peanut dip, Indonesian beef satay with peanut sauce, creamy peanut ginger dip, peanut ginger chicken, steamed eggplant and mushrooms with peanut sauce.

Dessert:

Peanut butter and chocolate biscotti, peanut butter truffles, peanut butter s’more quesadillas, peanut butter cheese cake minis, peanut butter fudge, Mrs. Salter’s peanut butter pie, peanut butter and nanner ice cream, peanut butter buttons, peanut butter blast, peanut butter cup brownies, chocolate peanut butter balls, retro peanut butter pie, p b and j bars, fudge glazed creamy peanut butter cake, peanut butter cup bark.

Of course I’m going to start off with a good old peanut butter sandwich!  Enjoy!

Creative Ways to be Kind

This Sunday is World Kindness Day.  It’s the day the world sets aside to remember to be kind to one another.  As creative people how can we show kindness?

-Donate part of our profits to a non-profit organization

-make some items for local senior centers and orphanages

-teach others how to start a creative business

-share your work online (you’ll inspire others and give them hope)

-use words in your creativity (like hope, love, and patience)

-donate items to banquets and fundraisers

-include a hand-written note with all our items that says “thank you”

How do you do to use your creativity to share kindness?

FF: Brenda MacIntyre, Medicine Song Woman

Happy Friday! Today we’re talking with Brenda MacIntyre.  She’s a beautiful woman who helps healers and spiritual mentors sing themselves alive.  Let’s hear what impact music has made in Brenda’s life:

Why are you passionate about singing?

My passion for singing comes from when I was a child. I’ve just always loved singing and I knew from the age of 11 that I would be a singer “when I grew up.”

What got you started with singing and being creative as a hobby/business?

When I was 17, a friend of mine who was a pianist and was friends with a lot of musicians encouraged me to get on stage and sing one night when she and her boyfriend were in the band playing at an event. I was at that point still as painfully shy as I had been growing up, but having my friends right there gave me the confidence to get up there and sing. And all of a sudden people were listening intently to me. It was a revelation because all my life up to then, I felt like nobody wanted to hear what I had to say. And to get confirmation that yes, I really could sing, was what spurred me on. Hearing myself on Top 40 radio in Florida at the age of 19 with my first single gave me a jumpstart that led to a Juno (Canadian Grammies) a few years later, and tons of TV and radio appearances over the years.

From even earlier, the age of 7 in fact, I was writing short stories. And my Grade 4 teacher did something unforgettable that still brings tears of gratitude to my eyes. She asked me if it would be all right if she photocopied a short story I had written so she could put it in the library for people to sign out and read. Can you imagine? I was overjoyed and wide-eyed at the thought that my work would be in the school library!! So I have continued to have a passion for writing as well. I was also a natural artist, but didn’t really find a mentor for that until I was 40 – and that was the beginning of a series of healing paintings that represent some of my songs.

So you see, creative self-expression is just what I’m all about. And singing is what has led me on my healing journey, and into this wonderful world of healing, business coaching and spiritual mentoring.

But the coolest thing I get to experience is when a woman’s eyes light up and she sounds her voice from a deep place within, merging passion with confidence with a massive clearing of what was holding her back… and she literally sings her power up and out into the world. THAT is what I LIVE for.

Would you share some of your music?

My song “Remember Who You Are” that I channelled at 11:11am on November 11th, 2009 is a powerful medicine song that helps to bring you into alignment with who you truly are.

And here’s my 2nd performance at the 2012 Gateway to Your Future Conference where Hay House author Gregg Braden and Howard Martin (HeartMath Institute) presented later that afternoon.  In this video, courtesy of videographer Dexter Ico, I channelled a medicine song to bring in the ancestors, angels, spirit guides and other divine beings, and to help connect everyone to their spirit. These songs I channel on the stage often result in physical and emotional healing in audience members. Over the weekend, I have a couple of women come up who said they had been instantly healed of neck and shoulder pain and other pains, and on Sunday after the song in the video, a woman told me she had a vision – and it was the exact vision I had had as I channelled the song – of an eagle spiraling up inside the round building we were in and disappearing at the top, carrying our prayers up and out. I love that kind of confirmation that tells me I’m doing what I’m meant to do.

What exciting future plans do you have for your work?

My music passion has transformed into a business called “Sing Your Self Alive!” with the exclaimation point on purpose, because it is so EXCITING, what I help women to do – literally and figuratively sing themselves alive. My favorite new offering is a VIP Day Program called “The Art of Expressing Your Sacred Power for Success in Your Life and Business.” It’s an in depth private healing and mentorship program that happens in person over a whole day spent with me, where the client gets their own frame drum, much like the one you see me with in the 2nd video, they get a healing and reading session with me in which I channel a medicine song for them, and they get customized coaching and instructions… and the most exciting part of all is that they get to sing themselves alive in a safe, encouraging sacred space. This is for women who are waking up spiritually and feeling like there’s just something missing that needs to open up inside them – it’s like that one last missing piece that will take them from feeling held back to feeling a huge sense of expansion and increase in confidence. The cool thing too is that the experience isn’t over at the end of their day. They get 30 days of follow-up with me, to help them really step into their sacred power and purpose without having to go it alone. I’ve been wanting to offer something live in person for those who are ready to go deep and expand spiritually very quickly – and this is it. So I’m very excited about this program!!

I also have a 6 month program in which I am helping women healers and coaches to bring their gifts into their business, make more money and fulfill their purpose, and I’ve got some cool new unfoldings coming down the pipeline for 2012, including national TV appearances on 2 documentaries about the 2012 phenomenon, and a retreat for women healers who want to deepen their connection, expand their gifts and fully step into their power – kind of similar to my VIP Day program but within an intimate group over a weekend.

And I’ll never stop loving the stage – as well as helping other women feel confident speaking their truth in the business and daily lives as well as on the stage.

Do you have any tips or inspiration to share?

I tell all my clients this: have an extreme gratitude practice, do LOTS of what you love, and when overwhelm, doubt and fear crop up to stop you, that gratitude and self-care will help you move through to the open door that is always waiting, for you to spiral up to fuller, more powerful sacred self-expression – and that’s what it’s all about now – being who we are on a very deep level. Sound moves through you like nothing else can. And that includes the sound of the human voice – especially when it is singing itself alive.  To close, one of my favorite quotes is “The obstacles in the way of living your dream are actually stepping stones to get there.”

You can connect with Brenda on her website, Twitter, Facebook and Youtube.

Thank you Brenda!  I love how your passion for music has brought you through such an amazing journey and now you’re helping others on their own journeys.

Cranberry Celebrations

One of my favorite fall foods are cranberries.  Unfortunately, they get buried beneath pumpkins, apples and turkeys.  So I decided we should have a whole day to celebrate them!  Here are some of my favorite recipes and a fun idea or two.

Crafts:

Popcorn and cranberry garland, cranberry flower frog, pumpkin and cranberry chandelier, cranberry bead wreath (you could substitute real cranberries too!), creative candles and cranberries, a bunch of cranberry crafts, cranberries and christmas ornaments, more decoration ideas with cranberries.

Recipes:

Breakfasts & Breads:

Cranberry cream cheese pinwheels, homemade granola, cranberry soda bread, cranberry pecan muffins, St Lucia’s braided bread, cranberry crumb muffins, apple cranberry spice muffins, cranberry orange scones, apple french toast with cranberries and pecans, cranberry apple quick bread, apple cranberry bread pudding, cranberry orange holiday bread, corn and cranberry muffins with chia seeds, christmas scones recipe, cranberry applesauce muffins, cranberry butter, fruit and nut toaster cakes, cranberry maple sausage skillet, cranberry lemon scones.

Pies & Cakes:

Cranberry apple pie, pear and cranberry crisps, cranberry upside-down cake, mini cranberry meringue pie, cranberry trifle, white chocolate and cranberry pie.

Dinners:

Couscous with apples, cranberries and herbs, cranberry sauce, turkey and cranberry ravioli, acorn squash with cranberries.

Desserts & Cookies:

Cider cranberry sauce, cranberry ice cream pie, festive chocolate bark, oatmeal cranberry and chocolate chunk cookies, cranberry applesauce, apple cranberry fruit leather, cranberry raisin oatmeal cookies, cranberry thumbprints, cranberry poached pears, yogurt cranberry coffeecake, cranberry white chocolate drops, red roosters, cranberry granita, date and cranberry pinwheels, cranberry strudel rolls, cranberry raspberry salad, cranberry chai cupcakes, cranberry rice pudding, cranberry date bars, cranberry macadamia bars.

Drinks:

Sparkling star punch, cranberry cheesecake shake, cranberry and orange vodka, berry mimosa mocktail, mulled cranberry cocktail, cranberry cocktail protein smoothie, cranberry cocktails, cranberry apple crush, cranberry apple tea, mulled cranberry punch.

What will you do with the bright red fruits this holiday season?  I’d love to hear your ideas and see your creations!  Share your ideas and pictures below.