Sunday, September 18, 2011

Just a thought

I need my wisdom teeth pulled out... Or cut out, rather *shudders*. So naturally, my whole face is hurting. It hurts to smile and talk, let alone to chew some food. So I got the bright idea to make a smoothie. Yeah, I know, I make a lot of them. But this time, I made it good. I thought, well since I add spinach to them, I'll try adding some other veggie (since I'm out of spinach). When I went to the farmer's market the other day, I bought some yellow zucchini. They are supposed to be sweeter than the green sister squash. So I shredded it up and mixed it in my smoothie! I couldn't taste it at all, and my smoothie was so good!

So out of all of that, for lunch, I got my fair share of veggies, fruit, calcium/protein (from yogurt and milk)...All I was missing were the grains. But that's okay, I had plenty of those at breakfast time. Now if only I could make a scrumptious something for supper.

Friday, September 16, 2011

Farmer's Market

The other day my friend Jennifer took me to the farmer's market here in town. I have never been to a farmer's market before, and let me just say, I'm in LOVE!!! They have all different kinds of vegetables there!! And then of course a few different types of melons (since summer is just about over, the other fruits aren't in season).

The veggies taste so good too!! I sliced open an eggplant, and it's even different inside. You can actually SEE the difference between organic veggies and non organic veggies. Now I know you can also taste the difference too. The taste is so much fresher!

So for ten dollars, I got a basket of tomatoes, a basket of zucchini, a basket of bell peppers, and a basket of eggplant! Most of them are actually already used up! They were so good! I'll post some yummy recipes for a few too:)

For fifteen dollars a few days later I got another basket of tomatoes, a basket of onions (a free melon), a basket of huge bell peppers, a basket of jalapenos, a basket of yellow zucchini, and a basket of yellow squash.

Some things you can do with zucchini:
Zucchini bread
Creamy garlic zucchini (recipe below)
Sauteed zucchini
Grilled zucchini
Bacon and zucchini quiche

Some things you can do with eggplant:
Eggplant parmesan (recipe below)
Beef and eggplant lasagna
Roasted eggplant and chickpea soup

Creamy Garlic Zucchini
What you need:
Zucchini (I used 2 for my family of 3 eaters)
Sour cream (I also thing it would taste great with cream cheese)
Garlic (Lots and lots of it for that yummy garlic flavor)

Grate the zucchini and put it in the pan with some butter and let it cook a little bit. Add in the garlic (you could try about 1 TBSP of the jarred minced or about 6 cloves), the sour cream (I just eyeball everything, but if you want to measure it out, try 2 TBSP to start out with), and spices. Mix it well in the pan and let it cook until the zucchini is nice and soft. It kind of tastes like mashed potatoes. It's so yummy! :)

Eggplant Parmesan
What you need:
1 big eggplant
Salt, pepper
Bread crumbs
1 egg
Mozzarella cheese
Parmesan cheese
Spaghetti noodles

Slice up the eggplant and dip it into the egg (beaten of course). Next dip it into the bread crumbs (this is called a dredge). Bake in a single layer on a cookie sheet at 350 for 10 mins, then flip to the next side for 10 mins. Meanwhile, cook up the sauce and noodles.

I honestly have no clue how much of everything I use. I never use a recipe for my spaghetti sauce. But add together the sauce, tomatoes, parsley, oregano, salt and pepper, tarragon, basil, onion, and garlic (add the sugar in last, and only a SMALL amount of this. The reason for the sugar is to cut down on the acid from the tomatoes). If you don't make your sauce this way, of course use your own recipe. I don't like using jarred sauce, but if you want to, that would be okay too.

Next layer in a baking dish (glass is preferred) noodles, eggplant, sauce, cheeses, noodles, eggplant, sauce, cheeses. And so forth until you don't have anymore ingredients. This is one of my family's favorite dishes, so I hope that you enjoy it as much as we do!

If you have more recipes you would like to add, please list them below in the comments. If you WANT some more, ask in the comments and I'll try to find some and make a post about that too!

Crockpot Chicken Chili

Lately I've been on the crockpot kick. Since this week has been a bit on the stressful side, it's so much easier to throw some stuff in the crockpot and then forget about it. Last night was no different. So in my findings of various recipes, I stumbled upon this chicken chili recipe. But we didn't have everything the recipe called for, so I changed it up a bit. I hope you enjoy!

What you need:

Chicken breasts (I used boneless skinless and cut it up into pieces)
Red kidney beans
Black beans
Tomato sauce
Chili powder
Green chilis
Ceyanna pepper
Adobo (a Hispanic seasoning. I know it's not natural, but it tastes super good)

I just eyeballed everything and threw it all together in the crockpot. Of course you can add other things or take some things out. It's totally up to you!

Friday, September 9, 2011

Hidden Veggies:)

Ever wonder what is the best way to get all the vegetables you need in a day? I do, all the time. While Ava and I LOVE veggies (and fruits), Rob doesn't eat them nearly as much as we do. So I thought of some ways to add more to your diet.

I stumbled across something called "green smoothies," packed with....drum roll please.... SPINACH!!! Sounds gross doesn't it? Rob thinks so. In fact, he refused to try any fruit smoothie I made that had it in there....Until I didn't tell him there was spinach. :) Clever. Turns out, you CAN'T taste spinach mixed with all the fruits and what not! Got me thinking, can you add other veggies to main course dishes? The answer is, OF COURSE!!

Try adding shredded zucchini to spaghetti sauce. The zucchini takes on the flavor or whatever it's mixed with. (You can also bake it into banana bread, or even just the bread part without the bananas:) )

Try adding purred carrots to mac and cheese! (For my recipe from scratch, see below)

And then of course add spinach to smoothies:) I packed in enough spinach in my smoothie today to get me ALMOST a whole serving! Oh, and for the smoothies, I like to make them with honey flavored Greek yogurt:)

So pretty much, you can add veggies to all kinds of dishes. Try experimenting with different veggies in different dishes. It's great for those picky eaters, and also if you just need a boost of veggies with your meal! Enjoy!

My made from scratch Mac and cheese-

What you need:
Shredded Cheese
(I eyeball everything)

Make a rue (melt the butter over medium heat, mix in flour to make like a paste). When that is finished, as it shouldn't take long, slowly add the milk while stirring. The goal is to not have any clumps. I would add a little, stir, and wait a minute or so to see how thick it is. Then add more milk if you need to. Add the cheese and salt, stir and serve! If you're adding in purred veggies, do so at the time you add the cheese. Enjoy!

Natural anti-itch

The temperatures are getting cooler here (and when I say cooler, I mean mid 80s to low 90s, crazy, I know). That means it's perfect temperature for mosquitoes... Oh how I loath those things. Fascinating how they work though...Anyway, that's not my point. The point is, those suckers itch! Like crazy! So I though, we don't have any anti itch cream here. So what can we use to keep the itch away? I looked up some stuff. Baking soda was number one! Shocking I know, since it's used for only EVERYTHING!

Here's my list (most of us already have the majority of these things already!):

Home Remedies from the Cupboard-

BAKING SODA. Baking soda battles itches of all kinds. For widespread or hard-to-reach itches, soak in a baking soda bath. Add 1 cup baking soda to a tub of warm water. Soak for 30 to 60 minutes and air dry. Localized itches can be treated with a baking soda paste. Mix 3 parts baking soda and 1 part water. Apply to the itch, but do not use if the skin is broken.

OATMEAL. Add 1 to 2 cups finely ground oatmeal to a warm bath (not hot or you might have breakfast for the next month in your tub) to ease your itches.

Home Remedies from the Refrigerator-
LEMON. Many American folk remedy recipes call for using a lemon to treat itchy skin -- and rightly so. The aromatic substances in a lemon contain anesthetic and anti-inflammatory properties, which may help reduce itching. If nothing else, you'll smell good. Squeeze undiluted lemon juice on itchy skin and allow to dry.

Home Remedies from the Spice Rack

CLOVES AND JUNIPER BERRIES. The American Indians of the Paiute, Shoshone, and Cherokee tribes knew how to stop an itch in its tracks. They used what nature provided, namely juniper berries. (No need to run out in the wilderness to gather berries. They are available in some grocery stores.) These berries contain anti-inflammatory, volatile substances. When combined with cloves, which contain eugenol to numb nerve endings, the result is no more itch. To make a salve of both spices, melt 3 ounces of unsalted butter in a saucepan. In a separate pan, melt a lump of beeswax -- about the amount of 2 tablespoons. When the beeswax has melted, combine with butter and stir well. Add 5 tablespoons ground juniper berries and 3 teaspoons ground cloves to the mixture and stir. Allow to cool and apply to itchy skin. Note: It is best to grind the spices at home because the volatile substances are preserved better in whole berries and cloves.

BASIL. Splash your skin with refreshing basil tea. Like cloves basil contains amounts of eugenol, a topical anesthetic. Place 1/2 ounce dried basil leaves in a 1-pint jar of boiling water. Keep it covered to prevent the escape of the aromatic eugenol from the tea. Allow to cool. Dip a clean cloth into the tea and apply to itchy skin as often as necessary.

MINT. If you're saving that basil for spaghetti sauce, try a mint tea rinse instead. Chinese folk medicine values mint as a treatment for itchy skin and hives. Mint contains significant amounts of menthol, which has anesthetic and anti-inflammatory properties when applied topically. In general, mint also contains high amounts of the anti-inflammatory rosmarinic acid, which is readily absorbed into the skin. To make a mint tea rinse, place 1 ounce dried mint leaves in 1 pint boiling water. Cover and allow to cool. Strain, dip a clean cloth in the tea, and apply to the itchy area when necessary.

THYME. If you're saving that mint for a glass of lemonade, there is one more spice on the rack that makes a good anti-itch rinse: thyme. This fragrant herb contains large amounts of the volatile constituent thymol, which has anesthetic and anti-inflammatory properties. In other words, it numbs that darn itch while reducing inflammation caused by all your scratching. To make a thyme rinse, place 1/2 ounce dried thyme leaves in a 1-pint jar of boiling water. Cover and allow to cool. Strain and dip a clean cloth into the tea, then apply to affected areas. Note: In Chinese folk medicine, dandelion root, easily plucked from most yards, is added to this rinse. If in season, place 1 ounce dried dandelion root and 1/2 ounce dried thyme leaves into 1 quart boiling water and proceed as directed.

Home Remedies from the Windowsill-

ALOE VERA. Aloe vera is a must for burns, but how about itches? The same constituents that reduce blistering and inflammation in burns also work to reduce itching. Snap off a leaf, slice it down the middle, and rub the gel only on the itch.

*NOTE* The site where I got this information can be found at:

Since finding this site, I have made the baking soda paste for mine and my daughter's mosquito bites, and within, I'd say, a minute if that, the itch was gone! She's back to bouncing around and not having to worry about that darn itch! However, I did notice that the baking soda paste might be just a BIT on the messy side. A small price to pay for some wonderful itch relief :)

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Homemade dishwasher detergent

We're almost out of dishwasher detergent. I thought there HAS to be a recipe somewhere for this! I mean, there's several different laundry detergent recipes, so, why not! Right? Right!

I found this from tipnut, a wonderful website that has so many different recipes for all sorts of things, how to do many things yourself, how to make things. Really cool. ANYWAY. I'm pretty sure I just used the last bit of our detergent this afternoon, so I'm just going to wash out that jug really really good and put the mixture in that. I have all the ingredients for it from having them for my laundry soaps.

What you need:
1 part baking soda
1 part borax
1 part water
(optional) 1 drop of lemon or orange essence oil per cup of detergent

Mix all together really well. Store in a sealable jug. Use 2-3 TBSP per each load. If you notice that your dishes get cloudy do to hard water, etc, add a bit of vinegar to the rinse compartment on you dishwasher (I have looked in ours, and I have absolutely no clue where this is located).

*NOTE* DO NOT breath in the borax! It is dangerous to your lungs to breath in the powder. Also DO NOT touch it with your bare skin for prolonged periods of time; it will cause skin irritation.

We haven't made this yet to try it out, but I'm really excited to give it a try!! I prefer a liquid to a powder, but here is a powdered detergent.

What you need:
1 cup borax
1 cup of (your choice) baking or washing soda

*NOTE* Baking soda and washing soda are NOT the same thing! WASHING soda is used solely for cleaning purposes and laundry boosters. BAKING soda is used for personal use, cleaning purposes, AND cooking!

On a very sweet side not that has absolutely NOTHING to do with the detergent, my son. Rob is holding him (changed his diaper after him waking up), trying to get him to go back to sleep. He is sitting on the couch with him, and he was just twisting his head to look up at his daddy! It was the sweetest thing EVER! I hope everyone has a great evening!

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Grocery shopping and a very long day *Recipes at the end*

My Dad-in-law and brother-in-law came into town today. They wanted to take us all out to dinner tonight. And while that wounds great, my diet would SO not appreciate that! I remember what happened last time Dad was here, I gain like 30 lbs in a week (or so it seemed) So I decided I'm going to cook!! I made sloppy joes from scratch! No stuff from a can here:) It tasted so good!

But we didn't have ANYTHING to eat here, so we went shopping. Of course since I needed the car, we all had to wake up at 5:30 this morning. And While V got a small nap in, Ava did not. Neither did I. Long day. But.....Before we started our day of shopping, I mopped and cleaned the kitchen, again. I know I said that I cleaned it just the other day, but it needed a good scrub down again. I threw a load of diapers in the wash, and put V down for a nap.

I took the kids (by myself while Dad and bro slept) to the natural store. We bought some grocery stuff and some snacks:) . It was pretty good! I also bought a pack of diapers, gPants! The package has two in it for 25 bucks. Not too shabby if you ask me! One is a darker blue, plain, and the other is a lighter blue with a cute pattern on it. I bought some spices, quinoa, broccoli, carrots, cereal, prenatal vitamins (since I'm nursing), some bean chips, and salsa. I'm sure I got a few more things, but off the top of my head, I really can't remember.

We came home, had some lunch and then we all went to walmart (aside from Rob since he was at work still). We got a crib mattress on sale! 38 bucks! I'm so happy about that!!! V is quickly outgrowing his bassinet:( *sad panda* Well we got yogurt, beans (still from a can because I still am having some problems knocking those out, but it WILL happen!!), milk, bread, beef, roast (for my Italian sandwiches I'm making tomorrow), kale (making kale crisp, so good), spinach, lettuce, chicken, sour cream, cottage cheese, some drink mixes (without tons of sugar. Alas, it's the only way I can really get Ava to actually drink enough water through out the day), vinegar, and of course some more that I can't think of off the top of my head.

All in all, NOT counting the mattress and the diapers, for the month we only spent 220! I think that's a good day right there. But by the time I was done shopping, it was time to pick up Rob from work. Well or so I thought. I get there and we wait for one whole stink in hour! Needless to say, very long day. But if you read below, I'll post my recipe for the sloppy joes I made, and also the kale crisp.

Sloppy joes:
Ground beef (I used a pound)
Tomato sauce (I used half a can)
Tomato paste (I eyeballed it)
Salt and papper
Half an onion
Green bell pepper
Just a bit of brown sugar (I think I put in close to 1/4 a cup, but I just eyeballed that too)
And last, a bit of soy sauce.

I cooked all of this together and let it marry in the pan and kind of reduce a little bit. Then I put it on top of some ciabatta bread. YUMMY!!

Kale crisp:
Kale rinsed and dried thoroughly
Olive oil
Salt and pepper

Heat the oven to 350 degree F. Rinse and dry your kale, and cut it to the desired size. Drizzle with olive oil, salt and pepper. Bake it for about 15 mins. Be sure NOT to over bake it as it will become bitter. Nobody wants a bitter kale crisp. The finished snack is very healthy for you, and will taste somewhat like a potato chip. I really hope that you enjoy these two recipes!

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

What? I can't eat that!

Processed foods. Doesn't sound THAT scary, right? Well you'd think not really, after all it's just a can of green beans, or a few crackers. Well ever wonder how these items are able to stay on the shelf for such a long time? They're processed!

It is a little time consuming to go through and look at every single label. Okay, I take that back, it's VERY time consuming. Especially with a toddler who wants to buy the whole store (Mommy I want Oreo cookies, no not this time... yeah you get the picture), and a baby who likes to be held almost 100% of the time we're in the store. But I still like to look at the labels. If I can't read it, I don't buy it, or the more ingredients, the worse it is for you. So what's the best way to go around getting all the right foods? Well we start off by shopping the perimeter (you know, the meats veggies, fruits).

We stock up on as many fresh fruits and vegetables as we possibly can. When we get home, we prep all the veggies, blanch them (which is only putting them in a boiling pot of water for 3-5 minutes), letting them cool a minute, then bag and freeze. It's super easy! And when it's time to eat, we just pull a bag out of the freezer, and heat it up! We do this with fruits as well to make smoothies:) Only, blanching isn't necessary.

Next we buy the freshest possible ground beef and turkey (though not as much turkey until the salmonella outbreak is gone) and separate them into roughly 1 lb sized bags and freeze. Same with chicken breasts, pork, and steaks. I personally don't like to get the pre-packaged meats (think the log of beef), because I recently found out that those companies add chemicals to them to preserve them. Not cool. Not only that, the FDA has made it to where they don't have to print the chemical on the package. Double not cool. I like it when the butcher can grind up the meats. Though, my husband doesn't always get the fresh meat, but that's okay. It's always a work in progress.

Now what about breads, rice, and pastas....or anything else for that matter? Well I recently have purchased ingredients to make my own bread. I know it will take a lot of practice, and I may or may not be able to keep up with it, but it's worth a shot. I mean, the worst that can happen is I'm no good at it. But on a good note, my husband is an excellent baker! Strange, but so true! Pastas...since we don't have a pasta machine, we buy that. But actually as of this past week, we have completely switched to whole wheat pasta (I did it for the fiber:) ). Rice, I prefer to have it brown.

Cereals is something that's hard for me still to skimp on. I love me some cereal! However. We don't buy the sugary stuff (think Lucky Charms and Fruit Loops). My favorite is Grape Nuts! I love that stuff!! Not the flakey kind, but the crunchy, yummy goodness kind:) I like to make a bowl of it, pour milk to just cover the top of the cereal, then microwave it to make it soggy and warm. That's the absolute BEST way to eat it! I won't eat it any other way! Well then there's the hot cereal. I like to get the 7, 10, or 12 grain cereals. I cook that over the stove and add some brown sugar or honey to it.

Since I have started this new dietary change, I have noticed that I have more energy and I just feel better physically and mentally. I obviously don't drink sodas and I don't eat sugary foods either. It feels great to have accomplished this much so far!

80 Uses for Coconut Oil

80 Uses for Coconut Oil

So what's the deal with coconut oil?

Offering a myriad of health benefits, coconut oil is affordable, readily available and completely natural. I have completely fallen in love with coconut oil and use it for EVERYTHING. Literally. I buy it in 5 gallon increments and keep it all over my house. I even have some in the car. So here is a little information to inspire you to check out this amazing oil including 80 uses for it!

General information about Coconut Oil

Coconut Oil:
Improves nutrient absorption

Daily Dosage:

Here is a chart outlining the recommended daily dosage of virgin coconut oil for persons over the age of 12. Coconut oil may be consumed by children under 12 but it is advisable to check with a healthcare practitioner on the proper dosage. Any good naturopath will have the information at the ready.

Weight in pounds/kilograms to Number of tablespoons of coconut oil daily:
175+/79+ : 4
150+ /68+ : 3 1/2
125+ / 57+ : 3
100+/ 45+ : 2 1/2
75+ / 34+ : 2
50+ / 23+ : 1 1/2
25+ / 11+ : 1

Type to use:

-Expeller pressed coconut oil can be used for anything. It does not have a coconutty smell of taste.
-Virgin coconut oil tastes coconutty and is great for cooking and baking where you want that flavor.
-Food grade should always be used.

80 Uses for Coconut Oil

Personal Hygiene/Body

1. Moisturizer - simply scoop some out of the jar and apply all over your body, including neck and face.
2. Eye cream - apply under the eyes to reduce puffiness, bags, and wrinkles. Use on the lids in the evening.
3. Preshave - coconut oil will prep skin for the pending damage caused by shaving.
4. Aftershave - coconut oil will help heal your skin after shaving without clogging pores.
5. Deodorant - coconut oil alone can be used as a deodorant, but even more effective in combination with cornstarch/arrowroot powder and baking soda!
6. Hair Conditioner/Deep Treatment - use as a leave in hair conditioner by applying a teaspoon of coconut oil to your ends and then running your fingers through your hair to distribute the rest! For a deeper treatment, rub in a tablespoon of coconut oil onto your dry scalp and gently work through to the ends. Put a shower cap on to prevent transfer onto bed linens and leave on overnight.
7. Hair Gel/Defrizzer - rub a little between your palms and either scrunch into hair (for curly hair) or finger comb in through from scalp to ends (for wavy/straight hair).
8. Toothpaste - there are numerous recipes out there but I just mix coconut oil and baking soda and dab a little of the mix on my toothbrush.
9. Make up remover - use a cotton swab and a dab of coconut oil and you would be amazed at how well it works!
10. Chapstick - just rub a little into lips and it not only acts as a softening agent but it also has an SPF of about 4 so you get a little protection!
11. Massage Oil - pretty simple; grab some and rub!
12. Lubricant - it is an all natural, perfectly safe personal lubricant. Not compatible with latex!
13. Sunscreen - see my post on natural sunscreen for more detailed information.
14. Stretch Mark Cream - coconut oil is great at nourishing damaged skin. It may not be the magic stretch mark cure but it will help.
15. Nipple Cream - works great to nourish cracked, sore, or dry nipples. Apply to a cotton ball and leave on your nipples between feedings.
16. Diaper salve - very comforting on a rashy bum with no harsh chemicals. Also safe for cloth diapers.
17. Cradle cap - having issues with dry skin on your baby's scalp? Coconut oil will not only nourish your baby's skin, it also helps eliminate cradle cap. Just rub a teaspoon onto scalp daily.
18. Body scrub - mix coconut oil and sugar together and rub all over! Rinse off and your skin will be super soft! You can add in essential oils if you would like a specific smell.
19. Healing - when applied on scrapes and cuts, coconut oil forms a thin, chemical layer which protects the wound from outside dust, bacteria and virus. Coconut oil speeds up the healing process of bruises by repairing damaged tissues. Plus, it smells a heck-of-a-lot better than anything from the pharmacy.
20. Bug Bites - when applied directly to a bug bite, coconut oil can stop the itching and burning sensation as well as hasten the healing process.
21. Skin problems - coconut oil relieves skin problems such as psoriasis, dermatitis, and eczema.
22. Swimmers Ear - mix garlic oil and coconut oil and put a few drops in affected ear for about 10 minutes. Do this 2-3 times a day and it usually works within one or two days.

General Health and Wellness

23. Stress Relief - relieve mental fatigue by applying coconut oil to the head in a circular, massaging motion. The natural aroma of coconuts is extremely soothing thus helping to lower your stress level.
24. Digestion - the saturated fats in coconut oil have anti-bacterial properties that help control, parasites, and fungi that cause indigestion and other digestion related problems such as irritable bowel syndrome. The fat in coconut oil also aids in the absorption of vitamins, minerals and amino acids, making you healthier all around.
25. Fitness - coconut oil has been proven to stimulate your metabolism, improve thyroid function, and escalate energy levels, all of which help decrease your unwanted fat, while increasing muscle.
26. Nose bleeds - coconut oil can prevent nose bleeding that is caused by sensitivity to weather such as extreme hotness and extreme coldness. This condition happens when the nasal passages become dry because of cold or dry air resulting to burns and cracks in the mucus membranes so bleeding happens. To prevent this just put coconut oil in you nostrils. Coat your finger with coconut oil and then lie down and coat your finger inside your nose. Doing this will strengthen and protect the capillaries in the nasal passages. A Vitamin C supplement will also help prevent nose bleeding.
27. For breastfeeding moms, consuming 3 ½ tablespoons of coconut oil daily will enrich your milk supply.
28. Helps with weight loss & controlling cravings.
29. Helps keep blood sugar levels stable and/or helps with cravings in those with diabetes.

Health Problems (that coconut oil is known for aiding, relieving, or even curing when taken internally)

30. Eczema - in addition to taking it internally, many have success applying it externally, some don't
31. Skin problems
32. Toenail fungus
33. Hot flashes
34. Bleeding hemorrhoids (can also be applied externally twice a day)
35. HIV
36. Head lice
37. Improvements in menstruation regarding pain/cramps and heavy blood flow
38. Migraines (with regular use)
39. Mononucleosis
40. Parasites
41. Thrush
42. Relieve gallbladder pain
43. Has helped some people improve symptoms of an underactive thyroid gland, results have shown subsequent thyroid blood tests becoming normal
44. Energy boost
45. Flaky, dry skin
46. May relieve acid reflux and indigestion when taken with each meal
47. Adrenal fatigue
48. Alzheimers
49. H. pylori
50. Candida albicans
51. Asthma, even in children
52. Autism
53. Cholesterol - improves HDL ('good' cholesterol) to HDL ('bad' cholesterol) ratio in people with high cholesterol
54. Chronic fatigue
55. Circulation/feeling cold all the time
56. Stronger immune system
57. Mental Clarity
58. Depression
59. Helps with inflammation in Crohns

Health Problems (that coconut oil is known for aiding, relieving, or even curing when applied topically)

60. Athletes foot
61. Back pain/sore muscles
62. Canker sores
63. Acne
64. Cellulite
65. Herpes (applied topically and taken internally)
66. Genital warts (through topical application over 6 weeks, and coconut oil enemas twice a day depending on the location of the warts)
67. Circumcision healing - although I am personally against circumcision, I have read that coconut oil is a really great healer for this.


68. Use 1 cup to 1 cup ratio when replacing other oils/butter in recipes with coconut oil.
69. Replacement for butter/lard/Crisco/PAM in it's solid form - greasing pans, pie crusts, etc.
70. Replacement for various oils in liquid form - baking, cooking, sautéing, etc.
71. Nutritional supplement - melt and add to smoothies.

Other Uses

72. Insect repellent - mix coconut oil with peppermint oil extract and rub it all over exposed skin. Keeps insects off better than anything with Deet! Tons safer too.
73. Great for dogs and cats for general wellness. Just add a teaspoon to their water bowl daily.
74. Goo Gone - just mix equal parts coconut oil and baking soda into a paste. Apply to the "sticky" area and let it set for a minute. Then scrub off with an old toothbrush or the scrubby side of a sponge.
75. Chewing Gum in Hair Remover - just rub some coconut oil over the stuck chewing gum, leave in for about 30 minutes, then roll the gum between your fingertip. Voila! It's out!
76. Polish Furniture - coconut oil with a little bit of lemon juice to polish wood furniture. However, I recommend you test it first on a very small, unobtrusive part of your furniture to make sure it works the way you'd like.
77. Polishing Bronze - all you have to do is rub a little oil into a cotton towel and then wipe down the statue. It cleans and helps deepen the color of your bronze.
78. Seasoning animal hide drums
79. Seasoning cookware
80. Moisturizing and cleaning leather products

*NOTE* I got this article from:

Homemade cleaners

Tomorrow my father in law and brother in law are coming for a visit. YAY! But then I looked around the kitchen, looked at the bathrooms, and then I looked at the floor. My house was a mess! I thought to myself, I *could* use up the cleaners that I have stashed away under the sink in the kitchen, but that would just put harsh fumes in my house, that, in my opinion are definitely NOT safe with a toddler and a baby. What else can I use? I looked through my cabinets, I have baking soda and vinegar! I've used them before for various things, but not cleaning the whole bathroom and kitchen. So I filled up a spray bottle with vinegar and water....aaannd..... Voila!! My homemade cleaner!!

What you need:
An empty spray bottle (Since I had months ago planned to go green, before I had actually started, I saved my empty spray bottles from cleaners. If you do this, make sure to wash them out thoroughly)
2 TBSP of vinegar

I just put in 2TBSP of vinegar into the bottle (most of the time I just eyeball it), and then fill the rest of the bottle up with water. Since we don't have paper towels, I cut up some old t shirts and made rags out of them. That way, when I'm done scrubbing stuff down, I can just throw them into the wash. You can also use a sponge (something like a scotch brite natural sponge, just be sure to throw that in the dishwasher or microwave to sanitize as soon as you're done).

For my tough spots and big things, like the bathtub, I sprinkled some baking soda on top of the vinegar spray. If you do this, you should hear a little fizz (that's the interaction from the vinegar and baking soda). This is completely fine and will not hurt you in any way. Then if you want to scrub that down, you can. But if you just want to let it sit, you can do that too, then just rinse!

What you need:
Baking soda
Vinegar spray

(I also hear that dawn dish detergent and baking soda work great on bathtubs too)

Another thing that baking soda and vinegar work great on are the stove top eyelets! It works great to spray them down with the vinegar spray and sprinkle baking soda on them, let them sit for a long while (especially if you're like me, and they need a GOOD scrubbing down). And then scrub with a sponge! Be sure to put some elbow grease into it! Don't be afraid to get your hands gritty! But if that really bothers you, throw on some gloves:)

For mopping, fill the sink with water and add a cup of vinegar. Works great! If you have one of those mops that have the spray bottle attached to it (hopefully a refillable bottle) make the same vinegar spray as noted above.
*For hard wood floors, instead of using a cup of vinegar, use only a half a cup when filling up the sink*

Another all purpose cleaner other than just plain vinegar and water, you can add in a teaspoon of borax and a few drops of dawn dish detergent.

*NOTE* If you prefer your cleaners to NOT have that vinegar smell, add in 10 drops of essence oils such as lavender or citrus.

*NOTE* If you use bleach for anything, NEVER mix it with vinegar or ammonia, as it will cause a harsh chemical reaction and fumes that are dangerous to the human body!

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Diaper friendly laundry detergent

I was on a mission not that long ago, searching for cloth diaper friendly laundry detergent. I saw many made with fells naptha or ivory soaps, as well as borax. Now I knew that soaps are bad for cloth diapers as they cause a residue buildup that can affect the absorbancy. Yeah, nobody wants that. So after doing some research and asking a lot of people, I came up with a solution that works for us!


Washing soda
Baking soda
Oxy clean free

I got a big tub from Tupperware and mixed them together in that. Since it's all powder, be careful NOT to breath it in!

Mix 3 parts of washing soda, 1 part of baking soda, and 1 part of oxy clean. I used a cup for the measurements. It really helped. I made it about a month ago and I still have a bunch left.

In the wash I use 1 TBSP of the detergent per diaper load. If you have a large load, you can add 2 TBSP in the washer instead of just one. If things get "funky" you *can* add a tsp of borax to the washer. If you have hard water, you can also look into 1 tsp of powdered Calgon to soften the water with each load.

Of course you can also use this detergent for your regular laundry as well:) I hope you find this helpful!!


Hello everyone! We are new to the military life, and are stationed at our first duty station. We have two kids, ages 3 and 3 months, girl and boy respectively. I am a stay at home mom who sews, dances, photographs, and scrapbooks. I also home school my kids! We are making the slow transition from processed to natural. Foods and products included. I will share with you some recipes for cleaning products, food, and personal hygiene. I will also share tips on home schooling, and our journey from the beginning. Enjoy!