Friday, December 9, 2011

Money-saving tips from Ingrid Callot: How to have a green holiday celebration that’s easy on the pockets

Hi, I’m Ingrid Callot. My friends know me as a recycling goddess and nature lover.

From Beritahots

One of my family’s favorite seasons is Christmas. We love spending time with relatives and friends to enjoy the holidays together. As a family leading an eco-friendly lifestyle, we see to it that our celebrations are not only easy on the environment but on our pockets, too.

Christmas doesn’t have to be expensive if done in the most eco-friendly fashion. For me, I always remain devoted to my guiding principles – reuse, reduce, and recycle. If things are likely to be beneficial to people, beneficial to Mother Earth, and beneficial to the community, then it must be good.

You’ll save a lot of time, effort, and a significant amount of money if you follow these Ingrid Callot nature-friendly celebration tips:

• Gift-giving. Many retailers sell natural goods, organic food, and other eco-friendly products. They are safe for you, your children, and the environment. The Internet is your bestfriend for this. Through the Web, you can find information on different shops that sell sustainable items.

From Alwaysharriet

• Charity. Another way of sharing is to give back to the community. Donate to your favorite cause. Bonus point: you don’t need to wrap your gifts! Offer gifts such as seedlings or plants. Try making a cute container garden from old toys.


• Green-decorating. Instead of buying plastic or non-biodegradable decorations, learn to think out of the box by creating your own. Use live plants, trees, and fruits that don’t easily spoil.

Get access to more eco-friendly tips from Ingrid Callot by following her on Twitter.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Have a green Christmas: Ingrid Callot shares eco-friendly gift ideas for the holidays.

Christmas is a big deal in my house. And it’s not just because I, Ingrid Callot, am the best friend of Oprah, the Dalai Lama, and Martha Stewart (in my head, at least). Christmas is a big deal in my house for myself, my husband Roger, and my son Jacob because it’s a lot of fun and it means quality time for us all.

From Ingrid Callot Album

Me and my best friend Edgardo Versoza also take Christmas seriously, because it gives us an instant excuse to shop.
We decided to try beating the holiday rush recently and stepped out to at least window shop for prospective presents for our loved ones.
From Ingrid Callot Album
Some of the things we spotted include:
· LED lightbulbs
· Organic clothing (“Ingrid Callot, explain cheesecloth to me?” a confused Edgardo had asked me)
· Organic cotton towels
· Paper mache bags
· Paper mache ornaments
· Plastic bag dryer
· Showerhead with mist setting
· Solar battery charger
· Solar radio
· Solar flashlight
· Shade- grown coffee
We had a lot of fun going in and out of various shops looking only for things that fell under the ‘eco-friendly’ category. It seemed to baffle some salespeople, but we didn’t mind, because what we wound up finding was certainly worth it. While it seems Christmas is only three weeks away, time flies, and it’s always best to be prepared.
From Ingrid Callot Album
For more gift ideas, follow me on Twitter!

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Ingrid Callot shares the benefits of eating raw

I am Ingrid Callot, DIY queen, recycling and composting queen, wife, mother, and a hardcore fan of green, eco-friendly living. I, together with my family, started living green last Christmas, and it feels great to be able to help take care of Mother Nature through sound lifestyle changes. We make it a point to avoid purchasing household items that may contain chemicals that are harmful to the environment. We reuse and recycle as many things as we can – we always think twice before throwing away anything that’s non-biodegradable. Although I do not have a green thumb, I decided to grow a small garden in our backyard because I would like my family to consume food that’s harvested straight from our garden.

I, Ingrid Callot, also make sure to feed my family only local and organic produce, but lately, I have decided to take living green a step further by following a raw food diet. Now before you start lecturing me about how this diet can lead to serious undernourishment, let me remind you that a diet consisting of uncooked, unprocessed plant food can lead to a leaner body, clearer skin, and higher energy levels. Because the plants are not exposed to heat and cooking utensils, the risk of having food poisoning is also reduced. This is a lifestyle choice and not merely a weight loss plan, although weight loss is one of the obvious benefits of raw foodism (winks). Staples of the diet include seaweeds, sprouts, whole grains, beans, dried fruits, and nuts, among others.

From Ingrid Callot

I have only been a raw foodie for a couple of weeks, but I can already feel the benefits – I feel lighter and more energized, and it is such a relief to not have to slave away over a stove just so I can get a decent meal. Visit my Facebook page for more information on raw foodism and eco-friendly living.

From Ingrid Callot

Friday, November 4, 2011

Cosmetics-hawker Ingrid Callot hunts for the best BB cream in the shelves today

Ingrid Callot - Pouring product

“Miss Ingrid Callot, you have such nice skin,” said one of my friend’s teenage daughters. “Do you use BB Cream?” And there I knew that yes, the craze has invaded the USA. BB cream is most popular in East Asia as a foundation which takes care of the skin at the same time. Most BB creams boast of at least six to eight different types of benefits, the most notable ones being that they can prevent or eliminate blemishes, contain sunscreen, control oil, and lighten skin all at the same time.

I did have my doubts about it, of course, especially since I wasn’t sure if this cream would be effective on Western skin. I did have to experiment at first, but the results were satisfying. Now I present my Ingrid Callot Best BB Creams list:

Ingrid Callot - makeup prep

• Missha M Perfect Cover – this comes very highly recommended all over the place. Not only does it come in a number of shades (most BB creams only seem to come in one or a couple of shades), but it isn’t as thick as other BB creams. It’s light and fragrant, and does an excellent job of diminishing scars and acne marks. Oil control is a little low, though, so pat with a powder.
• Skinfood Peach Sake Pore Serum – this is advisable for girls with oily skin—it’s really designed to control oil on the face. It comes in only two light shades, and while it initially can have a light coverage, it can be built up.
• HANSKIN Perfect Super Magic BB Cream – this one is more for people who like excellent coverage—it has some medium to full coverage, and is easy to apply. It has no fragrance, and has an SPF 30 protection.

Read more cosmetics tips on Ingrid Callot’s own Myspace page .

Ingrid Callot - makeup foundation

Monday, October 24, 2011

A beautiful home is an eco-friendly home: Ingrid Callot on using vintage furniture for your home

Hi there! I’m Ingrid Callot, a fun-loving environmentalist, blogger, wife, and mom. I love everything that’s green, and for months now, I have been using all my charms to influence my family, especially my son, Jacob, into living the green life as well. Fortunately, he has grown accustomed to it and has started to like it, too.

From Ingrid Callot

Recently, I took him on a little trip to a local flea market. I never thought that Jacob would enjoy the whole experience but to my surprise, he did. He even took the initiative of picking out things for our home. Of course, he used the tips he has learned from me in choosing sustainable home accessories. And in return, I, Ingrid Callot, even learned a lesson or two in home decorating from him.

From Ingrid Callot

I was torn between two corner tables – one was a square vintage table and the other one was a rectangular glass table. It took me awhile to react when Jacob said, “Mom, why do you have to buy that when you have grandma’s old table lying at our basement?” I thought to myself that my mom’s old table would save us bucks, plus it has a more vintage appeal to it that the two tables I’ve been fussing about.
I stopped for a few seconds and smiled at Jacob. “How could I forget grandma’s table?” I patted my little boy’s head and we went home.
Decorating the home should be easy and eco-friendly. Old furnishings add a certain vintage appeal to a modern home. So the next time you’re considering buying new furniture, think about the old ones you have first and see if you can incorporate them into your home.

From Ingrid Callot

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Thursday, October 20, 2011

Ingrid Callot: Basic gardening tips for gardening newbies

I am Ingrid Callot and in my neighborhood, I am best known for being a recycling goddess, composting queen, and health junkie. I am the biggest fan of Oprah Winfrey, Martha Stewart (I am convinced that at some point in our lives we'll find each other and we'd end up becoming best friends), the Dalai Lama, and I’m an advocate for green, sustainable living. My family and I have been leading eco-friendly lives since Christmas, and we're doing extremely well at recycling and reusing old things, eating organic food, and boycotting household items that contain chemicals that may be toxic to the environment.
From Ingrid Callot Album

I, Ingrid Callot, will be the first to admit that despite my being a huge fan of living green, I am no green thumb. As a child, all of the plants I had to nurture for Science class died within just a few days and I absolutely gave up on gardening until a few months ago, when my bestfriend Edgardo Versoza encouraged me to plant a little garden since we have so much fertilizer from composting.
Here are some of the things I learned from my little gardening project:
* Using mulch helps prevent the growth of weeds. It also preserves soil moisture so you need to water your plants less.
* Plants that are native to your area will adapt to the climate and temperature, so you don't need to water them as often. They will also grow beautifully in their “home turf.”

* Singing and talking to your plants do not really help them grow, but it puts you in a very good mood.(winks)
* Re-used water (such as rainwater collected into buckets) does an excellent job of nourishing your plants.
* Putting a mesh net over your plants on a very hot day can keep them from drying out. Mesh nets also allow them to breathe.
* Small gardens are more manageable than a full-blown one complete with a manicured lawn and several species of flowers and plants.
Follow me on Twitter for more eco-friendly tips.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Go green on the cheap: Ingrid Callot shares three inexpensive ways to save the Earth

Many people think that in order to be eco-friendly, spending large amounts of money for things that are green is a necessity. I, Ingrid Callot, am eco-bestfriendly and let me tell you that the majority of things you can do to save the environment don’t have to cost a fortune. Below are three cheap and easy things you can do to go green:

From Ingrid Callot

Be the farmer’s best friend.
And I don’t mean live on the farm and milk cows. Buy organic food! The best prices on organic produce are close to home at your local farmers’ market. You are not only saving money and getting healthy, but you are also putting more cash into the farmers’ pockets and supporting local food production.

From Ingrid Callot

Ditch the bubble wrap. Ingrid Callot here loves popping bubble wraps. But once I started following in the footsteps of eco-friendly Oprah, I ditched almost everything made of plastic inside my house, and that includes bubble wraps. Whenever I have a package to send, I use yesterday’s newspapers as packing material instead of buying bubble wrap. It seems old-fashioned but for me, what’s old news can be good news.

From Ingrid Callot

Let the sunshine in. Turn off the lights, and open the blinds and curtains. Aside from being completely renewable, sunlight is free, letting you save on electricity. The sun’s rays offer just the right brightness, and even help regulate your sleep patterns and improve your mood.

From Ingrid Callot

With these simple and inexpensive green tips, you’ll be making your wallet fatter. Just look at me, I’m on my way to buying that figure-flattering Stella McCartney dress that my faboosh friend Edgardo Versoza and I are dying to have!

From Ingrid Callot

More tips on green living from Ingrid Callot is available on Twitter.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Garden volcano: Ingrid Callot and son do a science experiment

With husband Roger away on a business trip, I, Ingrid Callot was left with a weekend of mother-son-time with dinosaur enthusiast Jacob. He has been obsessing about dinosaurs, especially on the volcanic eruption that caused their extinction. My cute eight-year-old is quite convinced that witnessing a volcano erupt would be the “coolest thing on earth!”

From Ingrid Callot

Now, it’s up to dear old momma to show Jacob that volcanic eruptions aren’t exactly cool. We had a tour around the museum that was definitely educational; even I learned a thing or two about our gigantic friends. I definitely didn’t know that most dinosaurs were vegetarians!

From Ingrid Callot

But the tour wasn’t enough to sway my son’s conviction on volcanic eruptions. So I thought a great movie should do the trick. Thanks to my newly organized Ingrid Callot-style closet, I was able to find the VCD of the movie: The Land Before Time, which I bought years ago.

From Ingrid Callot

Jacob definitely no longer desires to witness a volcanic eruption after watching this very sad but very beautiful movie. I, on the other hand, had to find a way to cheer up his dampened spirit. To do this, Jacob and I did a science experiment in our own backyard. We simply dug up some dirt from the garden and piled it up around a tin can (a used one from the kitchen was perfect) to create a small hill.

From Ingrid Callot

And to make our little volcano erupt, Jacob dissolved a tablespoon of baking soda in two tablespoons of water in the tin can, while I poured in a drop of red food coloring and a cup of vinegar. Now, witnessing this kind of volcanic eruption was earth-friendly and cool indeed!

From Ingrid Callot

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Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Organize that closet: Ingrid Callot on the best tie and belt organizers on the market

Yesterday my friend Edgardo Versoza went by my house to check out the new green dress I bought (which he’s jealous of). He opened my closet and shrieked, “Ingrid Callot! Did a storm hit your closet? Hurricane Katrina was sooo six years ago!”

From Ingrid Callot

I peered inside my closet and realized that yes, it looked like it was hit by a storm. My hats were on the floor, my clothes were everywhere and were mismatched, and my belts were on the floor too, lying there like dead snakes. My husband Roger’s neckties were mixed up with my scarves, and even his favorite blue tie was wrapped around the heel of one of my shoes. I stood there, stone-faced. I never knew my closet was this messy until today, and I realized I haven’t organized my closet for a while now. Edgardo clicked his tongue and said, “That’s it! Ingrid Callot, we’re going shopping!”

After days of searching the Internet and visiting stores that sell tie and belt organizers, we found these cool ones that you too, would surely love:

• Richards Homewares 16-Hook Spinning Tie Hanger. This hanger is perfect for Roger’s ties and belts. It has 16 sturdy hooks which can pivot independently, allowing for even greater organization. It hangs on any closet rod and measures only 8 inches at its widest points, taking up minimal space in your closet.

From Ingrid Callot

• Smartek Motorized Rack. Both Edgardo and I gushed over this! This electronic revolving rack stores and organizes ties on 64 tie hooks and belts on eight belt hooks that rotate smoothly. It includes a built-in light so you can see your necktie collection in the dark. And oh, the light shuts off automatically after 10 seconds. Neat-o!

From Ingrid Callot

• Handy Hold-All.This cute organizer will be my gift to my little son Jacob, so that his closet won’t be as messy as Mommy’s. Made from cotton, the Handy Hold-All keeps bags, belts, hats, ties, and scarves neatly organized, and you can hang it on the closet door thanks to the small grommet at the top. It also has heavy-duty snaps to keep items secure.

From Ingrid Callot

Once I buy one of these organizers (or all of them!), Edgardo will never look at me disapprovingly again and say, “You are one heck of a clutter queen, Ingrid Callot.”

For more organizing tips, follow me on Twitter.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Ingrid Callot on Organic and Mineral Make Up: Giving You the Freshest, Most Natural Glow

This is Ingrid Callot, also known in my side of town as the biggest fan of Martha Stewart, and of green, eco-friendly living. I admire Martha a lot, and in my mind, we're best of friends – sharing DIY tips and trading recipes while sipping freshly-squeezed orange juice and some vegan cupcakes. In real life, though, my bestfriend is the fabulous Edgardo (or "Versoza. Edgardo Versoza" as he calls himself), who is also my stylist, shopping buddy, personal cheerleader, and publicist. He fully supports my family's decision to live a greener lifestyle, and has taken baby steps to eco-friendly living as well (or maybe he just wanted an excuse to hoard eco bags).

We were supposed to go to the organic Sunday market last week, and upon arriving at my doorstep, Edgardo screeched, “Ingrid Callot! Living green does not mean you have to look like a corpse! Why aren't you wearing makeup?” I tried to explain that I did a little spring cleaning and threw out all my makeup because they contain lead and parabens, when he shut me up and said, “That's what mineral makeup is for!” And so, our Sunday was spent looking for mineral makeup online. I ended up spending the budget for grass-fed Wagyu beef on mineral foundation, blush, and lipstick.

From Ingrid Callot

Mineral makeup was worth every penny, as it made my skin look fresher and more radiant. The foundation made my skin look matte and poreless, and the blush imparted a healthy glow. The lipstick made my lips look and feel soft and supple. The best part is that the makeup did not have any scent, which means only the most natural ingredients were used, and I did not get skin irritation or breakouts, which means it's perfect for sensitive skin. The formulation for mineral makeup is gentler than that of commercial brands, so it's safer for everyday use. The makeup did not budge even after 6 hours of running after my little boy, preparing dinner, and doing the dishes, which meant less retouching, so I use less of the products. The packaging is also made of recycled materials, which makes it very earth-friendly.

From Ingrid Callot December

With mineral makeup, you beautify not only yourself, but gorgeous Mother Nature, too. Find more eco-friendly tips on my Facebook page.

Friday, June 10, 2011

Goodbye, Oprah: Ingrid Callot Reminisces Favorite Oprah Show Moments

From Ingrid Callot

Did you watch the Oprah Show finale? As a huge Oprah Winfrey fan, I did. I had a box of tissue beside the couch while wearing a personalized “Ingrid Callot loves you, Oprah!” t-shirt. It was a sad day for me, like for all other American viewers who have followed and watched every Oprah episode for the past 25 years. I am also sad because after all these years, I never got to be a studio audience and win a car. To curb my sadness over the end of my favorite show, let us reminisce my all-time favorite Oprah Show moments.

• A Skinny Oprah Dragging a Wagon of Fat. She had been truly open to the whole world about her weight but Oprah’s most unforgettable weight-related moment was back in the “Diet Dreams Come True” episode in 1988, when she dragged a fat-filled wagon down the stage. I, Ingrid Callot, shivered at the sight of the animal fat. The fat stood for the 67 lbs. Oprah had lost in less than five months. Wish I could do that, too.

From Ingrid Callot

• Everybody Gets a Car. Oprah worked her magic wand and granted every audience member a new Pontiac G6 sedan worth nearly $30,000 during her September 14, 2004 episode. The whole room went bonkers, including me, who was at the time staring at the TV in disbelief and in envy of the audience members. (Here I go again about the car thing. Must… STOP.)

From Ingrid Callot

• The Man who Jumped on Oprah’s Holy Couch. Yes, it was a moment worth remembering because a huge movie star made a fool of himself out of love. Tom Cruise’s uncontrollable enthusiasm over how in love he is with wife Katie Holmes led him to jump on Oprah’s couch, onto the floor, and then back on the couch. A bemused Oprah was like, “I don’t know what happened to you, boy!” I didn’t either!

From Ingrid Callot

For more Ingrid Callot musings, follow her on Twitter and find her on Facebook.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Hang in There: Clutter Queen Ingrid Callot on Unused Coat Hangers in the Closet

Hello, everyone! It’s me, Ingrid Callot, your go-to friend for tips on how to be green and help save Mother Earth. I had been hounded by nightmares of getting chased by garbage cans as acid rain poured down on me, melting my face. Thus, I woke up one day and started living sustainably, together with my hubby Roger and curious little boy Jacob.

Roger has been bugging me to clean out my closet for weeks now. He says, “Hunny, the closet is storage for clothes. Look at yours, it’s full of unused hangers instead of clothes. I love you, but honestly your organizing skills are non-existent.” So I thought, “Ingrid Callot, what are you going to do with those coat hangers?”

From Ingrid Callot

I didn’t want to throw all the plastic away so I Googled “use for unused hangers” and found an article about the Coat Check Hanger. The chair, designed by Jeoy Zeledon, makes something useful out of hangers by using them as material for the seat. This will save other materials like animal leather from being used to make another chair. The hangers slide on and off the steel frame without adhesive so you can use any hanger you like, in any color. According to Zeledon, the hangers “conform to your bum and are surprisingly comfortable.”

From Ingrid Callot

From Ingrid Callot

They sure look like they’re comfortable enough to slouch on. I will make a Coat Check Hanger and present it to Roger with a note saying, “My organizing skills compass is now pointing to the North. I told you I’d get rid of those hangers eventually. Love, Ingrid.”

Follow Ingrid Callot on Twitter and find her on Facebook.

Monday, April 4, 2011

Ingrid Callot Tips for a Life of Glorious, Green Gardening

From Ingrid Callot Photos

I’m Ingrid Callot and my three favorite people are Oprah Winfrey, Martha Stewart, and the Dalai Lama. I would love to have them over one night for a Mexican dinner with my husband Roger and son Jacob. After that, we’ll play charades over tubs of cheese popcorn and cream soda. When Jacob’s off to bed and Roger’s sauntered over to his nightly bout at his workstation, the four of us will collapse on the living room couch for a marathon of Law and Order: Special Victims Unit, Friends, Arrested Development, and The Real Housewives of Orange County.

From Ingrid Callot Photos

I live to keep house and keep house in order to live. Little by little, I am replacing bad habits for eco-friendly practices to usher in sustainability. “Ingrid Callot, you have so much fertilizer now,” my friend Edgardo Versoza declared one day after seeing the fruits of my composting, a habit I started over a month ago. “You need to plant yourself a nice, little garden.”

Unfortunately, I am no green thumb. I wouldn’t be able to tell the plants from the weeds if the darned parasitic growths were killing my crops cold. Thanks to, however, I now know a thing or two about gardening.

From Ingrid Callot Photos

  • Plant locally – Vegetables and greens native to your area will be adaptive to the climate and temperature extremes, and will tend not to need too much extra water.
  • Mulch it over – Mulch preserves soil moisture, saving you gallons of water. It also prevents the growth of weeds.

  • From Ingrid Callot Photos

  • Re-use water – Put rain buckets under the house gutters and use the extra runoff to water your garden.
  • Keep things simple – A frenzied backyard mess will only stress you out rather than relax you. Small gardens prove to be more manageable and rewarding.

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Friday, March 11, 2011

Ingrid Callot: Paper Bags vs. Plastic Bags

From Ingrid Callot December

From Ingrid Callot December

My name is Ingrid Callot, and I long to one day meet Martha Stewart, Oprah Winfrey, and the Dalai Lama. In my dreams, the four of us go trick-or-treating on Halloween, with me as Betty Boop, the Dalai Lama dressed as Super Saiyan Goku, Martha as Marilyn Monroe, and Oprah as Whoopi Goldberg. I wonder how much candy we’d get.
From Ingrid Callot December

Last Christmas, my family and I made a vow to live green. We began favoring reusing and recycling over buying new things, eating only local produce, avoiding the purchase of detergents and substances that have toxic chemicals, refraining from using and buying things made out of plastic, and composting our organic waste.
From Ingrid Callot December

One day, my friend Edgardo pointed out that my environmentalism was still problematic. “Ingrid Callot, you are hopeless,” he said, cocking his head from side to side. “You ban all plastic bags, but you’re using these paper bags, which is worse.”

“Edgardo Versoza,” I said. “I use paper bags for a reason. They’re perfectly recyclable and biodegradable and hold more stuff than plastic bags can ever carry.”

“Call me when you graduate from being an entry-level environmentalist,” he said, before walking out.

From Ingrid Callot December

From Ingrid Callot December

Puzzled, I Googled “paper plastic environment,” and felt my jaw drop. According to an article from Treehugger, the best choice was neither paper nor plastic, but reusable canvas bags. A study showed that canvas bags, when used 500 times during their life cycle, are 14 times better than plastic, and 39 times better than paper on a range of aspects including the amount of energy used in manufacturing, environmental damage caused in production, and reuse as well as recycling rates.

With that, I dialed Edgardo’s number to invite him to go shopping for a reusable canvas shopping bag.

From Ingrid Callot December

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Friday, February 11, 2011

Small Touches: Ingrid Callot’s Alternative to the Romantic Big Splash

Exuding the calmness of a greenhorn who hears afresh the jolting notes of a war cry, I, Ingrid Callot, walk already a dead man past the arsenal of Anthropologie, away from the crimson fittings and blood-kissed accouterments that scream Valentine behind the tall glass windows of my once-favorite home d├ęcor shop.

I go home triumphant.

From Anthropologie

My baptism of fire in the fight for frugality last Christmas is working wonders for me. My husband waves his white flag of a bank statement in my face and congratulates me—I have just cut our household expenses down to a smashing 50 percent! February comes as a challenge that brings opportunity to save moolah once again.

Forget about the clinking of champagne glasses and bells. The Ingrid Callot contingency is to throw some fancy bonbons on a crystal candy dish, redeem the linen table from the closet, and concoct a self-blended potpourri in a wine glass. Voila! A romantic dining table masterpiece is set for me and Roger.

From Etsy

Take this from me: there is something saccharine about handpicked garden flowers arranged with the right colors. Let me tell you, my hard science-oriented husband appreciated the “art” outlining the floral arrangement I made for our Christmas dinner.

Toss in some paper napkins with kitschy designs as well. Forget about fancy tablecloth this V-Day. Let small touches spell out the romantic big splash for you. Besides, “no retreat, no surrender” is the game when it comes to the thriftiness test.

From Inspired Living Spaces

Learn how small touches can turn into big splash from my other blog,