Repurpose it! Today will find me again enjoying my favorite activity...baking. Whether you’re shaping dough or prepping baking pans, when a recipe demands that you lightly flour your surface, dust on just enough with a flour filled salt shaker. I find this to be quite handy, but don't fill the shaker to the top with your flour. It flows out much better if it's only half full.
Make your own air freshener sprays this summer and your home will smell fresh and inviting! It's so easy and you may already have the ingredients on hand.
The refreshing scent of lemon is commonly used to eliminate anxiety and stress. While it does have some energizing properties, it can calm anyone who is in distress. It also has a cleansing effect on the environment and will make your home smell clean and fresh.
Lemon Air Freshener Spray Ingredients: 2 cups hot water 1/8 cup baking soda 1/2 cup lemon juice
Dissolve the baking soda in hot water and then add the lemon juice. You can use ReaLemon juice for this (and expired is fine so a good way to use it up). Put in a spray bottle and enjoy the scent!
Most people find the scent of vanilla both relaxing and comforting. It elicits thoughts of favorite foods and happy memories of home and childhood. Vanilla is a subtle fragrance and is often combined with other fragrances in pleasing ways. Clove is a powerful, spicy-fruity, warm, sweet aroma. This spray denotes a comforting and warm environment.
Vanilla & Cloves Air Freshener Spray Ingredients: 1 cup water 1 cup household vinegar (white) 1 TBS vanilla extract 1 tsp cloves
Bring all ingredients to a boil then simmer over medium heat for two minutes. Remove from heat and allow to cool. Strain cloves and then pour liquid into spray bottle, shake and use as needed. Note: You can increase/decrease the vanilla & cloves amounts to your preference.
Witch's Ball? You may have seen them in shoppes and catalogs, but do you know what a witch ball is? I love them, lovely hollow spheres of plain or stained glass. In the 18th century they were hung in cottage windows to ward off evil spirits, spells from a witch, or ill fortune. I find this amusing since Witch's Balls actually originated among cultures where witches were considered a blessing and they would enchant the balls to enhance their potency against evils. In our ancestor's days they were hung in an east window. However, if you have one in your home today, any area around your home, whether in a window, porch, on a desk, or even outside in a garden, is a perfect spot to place it to ward off negative energy.
Witch balls appeared in America around the 19th century and today are often found in gardens under the guise of a gazing ball. The mirrored balls are said to reflect away evil and bring peace to the garden and surrounding area.
According to folk tales, witch balls would entice the evil spirits with their bright colors, and the strands inside the ball would then capture the spirit and prevent it from escaping.
Traditionally these balls are green or blue in color and made from glass (others, however, are made of wood, grass, or twigs instead of glass). Some are decorated in enameled swirls and brilliant stripes of various colors.
If so, and you find yourself wearing alot of it, you are an action oriented and competent personality. You need people around you - being alone for too long makes you depressed and you then allow negativity to engulf you.
Orange symbolizes practicality, independence, organization and creativity. You are self-motivated, active and competitive and you get great satisfaction from helping others, especially since they find you inspiring with your vitality and positive energy. Be careful though, patience is not one of your virtues and you can be quite forceful and domineering over others when under stress.
Using lavender sugar in tea gives you a milder flavor than brewing the lavender tea itself. It's also a nice way to sweeten up your fresh strawberries and other fruits. So easy to make yourself, this is a lovely treat and perfect for summer gifting.
If you are not using your own grown lavender, please do make sure it's food grade and not treated with pesticides. If you can't locate it in your area, you can order culinary lavender, as well as other products from Hood River Lavender. Click here to visit their site.
Put the lavender flowers and sugar into a container that has a lid. Stir and mix together the flowers and the sugar. Some prefer to run the sugar mix in a food processor to finely chop up the flower buds into the sugar. If you do this be careful or you'll have lavender powdered sugar.
Allow the lavender flower/sugar mix to rest tightly sealed for a week in a cool dark place to allow the flavor to fully develop.
If you prefer not to have the lavender buds in your sugar after it is scented, you may sift them out using a strainer then storing the sugar until needed after the week's time.
Lavender is a remedy for many health problems and it's one of my favorite plants. You can easily make your own lavender water and use it in many ways.
Please note that lavender floral water can not be used in cooking.
Boil 250 ml water for 5-10 minutes, Add 2 teaspoons of dried lavender flowers, and 20 drops of lavender essential oil. Mix well. Filter water into a large ceramic bowl. Wait until cool then pour it in a jar and close tightly. Keep it refrigerated for later use.
Chilled lavender flower water can be used as a skin freshener on the hot summer days. Fill a small spray bottle (these can be purchased at most stores )and spritz your face, making sure to keep your eyes closed. Shake well before each use.
Read on to see many more ways you can benefit from lavender and lavender water:
Aching Muscles If you’ve spent a back breaking afternoon in the garden, jump into a lavender bath to soothe your aches & pains. Apply epsom salts & a few drops of lavender oil to the bath and soak away the tension. Acne Lavender is one of the most valuable oils for the treatment of acne, according to aromatherapists. “It inhibits the bacteria that cause the skin infection, helps to rebalance the over secretion of sebum, which the bacteria thrive on, and reduce scarring”. Add a few drops of lavender oil to plain cream sold at health food stores or pharmacies and use as a moisturizer or cleanser. Bugs & Bacteria French laboratory studies in the early 20th century showed that lavender is a powerful antibacterial in dilutions of 5 per cent or less. It is lethal to bacteria that cause typhoid, TB & diphtheria combined with lemon balm, for its clinically tested anti-viral properties. Burns (minor) After you have cooled the area by immersing it in running cold water for 5 minutes, gently stroke on lavender oil. Pain relief is almost immediate, and burn usually heals without scarring. Cuts & Wounds Apply lavender oil to sooth pain, prevent bacterial infection and aid scar-free healing. Earache Warm a bottle of lavender oil in hot water for a minute or two, then gently massage a few drops into the skin around the ears and throat. For babies & small children, add 2-3 drops of the warmed oil to a little olive oil and massage in the same way. Eczema Stroke infused lavender oil (a few drops of lavender oil & carrier oil) into dry, itchy skin. Small children will find this especially comforting. You can also add a few drops of lavender oil to calamine lotion, shake before use. Fatigue Add 5 drops of lavender oil to a hot foot bath and relax while your feet soak. The soles of the feet are particularly porous, so lavender reaches your bloodstream very quickly, exerting it's stimulating and soothing effects on various systems of your body. Fevers For babies or small children, sponge them down very gently with tepid water to which you have added a drop of lavender oil. Take care not to let them get chilled. This works for adults too. Giddy Spells, Faintness or Palpitations Make your own smelling salts with sea salt, lavender oil, peppermint oil & basil oil. Headache The distilled water of lavender (Hydrosol) mist around your head is refreshing and soothing. Alternatively, make a compress of a piece of muslin soaked in icy cold water then sprinkled with a few drops of lavender oil and apply to the forehead, or massage a few drops into the forehead, temples and nape of the neck. Insomnia In a number of small studies, elderly psychiatric patients have been shown to sleep better and be more alert during the day when their sleep medication is replaced with lavender oil either dropped on their pillows, or placed in a diffuser on the ward. To help to induce sleep, put 3 or 4 drops of lavender oil on your pillow. For babies, add 1 drop of lavender oil & geranium oil in carrier oil and massage into a babies back or a few drops in their bedtime bath. Long-Haul Travel Combine lavender, rosemary, neroli, frankincense & sage, into your hand luggage and roll it over your pulse points to help you keep a clear head during those endless hours in the air. Menstrual Cramps Massage a few drops of lavender oil into your lower abdomen or apply a hot compress onto the area, which a little lavender oil has been sprinkled. Scabie This infestation by a tiny mite burrowing into your skin causes intense itching. Rub the whole body with lavender oil, then following every day until better with a mixture of lavender oil and alcohol. Change and wash bedding and clothes and sprinkle lavender oil on the mattress. Shingles Combine a mix of lavender oil with analgesic, antiviral & scar preventing essential oils or on compresses to the agonizing lesions of shingles. It usually produces a cure within 5-8 days. Sinusitis Lavender is one of several essential oils that aromatherapists recommend for inhalations to relieve sinusitis, add two drops of lavender & thyme oil to a bowl of near-steaming water and inhale slowly and deeply, with a towel over your head & bowl. Stress & Anxiety Keep a spritzer of lavender mist handy to spray on your face during the day, or apply lavender oil to your temples. Sunburn Spray pure lavender mist directly onto the skin or add 8 drops of lavender oil and 4 drops of peppermint oil to a teaspoon of jojoba oil. Pour it into a cool-to-lukewarm bath and soak for 10 minutes.
That if something no longer serves a purpose in your life, it is clutter. Clutter can be a physical thing or a belief that blocks your path. Holding on to things that don't feed your psyche will instead eat up your energy. Expand your energy today by getting rid of unwanted gifts, broken or useless items, self-defeating mental images, etc. Start this minute to create the life you imagined for yourself. We often get lost or turned around on our path while working to obtain the money we need for food, housing, raising a family etc. If you are not doing what you love, do one thing today to change it! Every time you do one thing, you are closer to doing or being what you imagined for yourself.
Are you looking for something special to spread on your scones at tea time? You will love this cherry and pecan cream cheese spread! It's even delightful spread on a shortbread cookie or two, or spread atop a cupcake. ;) In our local market you can find dried cherries with the raisins and other dried fruits. Enjoy!
Ingredients: 1 cup dried sour cherries 1 cup water Two 8-ounce packages cream cheese, softened 1/2 cup chopped toasted pecans 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice 1/2 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves 1/4 teaspoon freshly grated lime zest Scones, Cookies, Crackers
In a small heavy saucepan, simmer cherries in water until liquid is reduced to about 1 tablespoon. Remove pan from heat and cool mixture. In a bowl whisk together cream cheese, pecans, lime juice, thyme, zest, and cherry mixture until spread is combined well. Spread may be made 2 days ahead and kept chilled, covered. Serve spread with scones, cookies, bagels, crackers etc.
If you need to measure the space between your plantings, turn one of your long handled gardening tools into a measuring stick!
Just lay your tool of choice on the ground and next to it place a tape measure. Using a permanent marker, write inch and foot marks on the handle. When you need to space plants a certain distance apart (from an inch to several feet) you'll have your measuring device nearby.
Plenty of people miss their share of happiness, not because they never found it, but because they didn't stop to enjoy it. Remember today, for every minute you are angry, you lose sixty seconds of happiness. Is it really worth it?
Did you realize that if you want your bath towels to last awhile there are steps you need to take to care for them right from the start?
Bath towels displayed on store shelves today are usually coated with a special water resistant fabric softener. This makes the towels look softer and fluffier than usual (for display purposes), but they are not absorbent enough for first use.
Before you use your new towels, wash them with water and a cup of white vinegar. The vinegar does two things: it will wash off the coat of water resistant fabric softener, and it will set the towel's colors, thereby preventing fast fading.
Suppose your doctor told you, on your next visit, that he has just discovered a miracle drug which, when eaten as a part of your daily diet or taken as a beverage, could, depending on your body chemistry: prevent or cure liver diseases, such as hepatitis or jaundice;
act as a tonic and gentle diuretic to purify your blood, cleanse your system, dissolve kidney stones, and otherwise improve gastro-intestinal health;
assist in weight reduction;
cleanse your skin and eliminate acne;
improve your bowel function, working equally well to relieve both constipation and diarrhea;
prevent or lower high blood pressure;
prevent or cure anemia;
lower your serum cholesterol by as much as half;
eliminate or drastically reduce acid indigestion and gas buildup by cutting the heaviness of fatty foods;
prevent or cure various forms of cancer;
prevent or control diabetes; and, at the same time, have no negative side effects and act on only what ails you. If he gave you a prescription for this miracle medicine, would you use it?
All of the above functions, and more, have been attributed to one plant known to everyone, it is our common dandelion.
You might have thought it only a useless weed that annoys you when you see them propagating in your nice, green lawn, but there is so much more to this plant.
Do you know the benefits of Dandelion Tea? Dandelion leaves and roots contain substantial levels of vitamins A, C, D, and B complex as well as iron, magnesium, zinc, potassium, manganese, copper, choline, calcium, boron, and silicon. These elements are transferred to dandelion tea when the leaves and roots are infused in hot water.
Dandelion Tea is wonderful for keeping optimum liver, kidney and gallbladder functions.
It enhances detoxification by stimulating urination, as well as replacing the potassium lost to the increased volume of urine.
Dandelion Tea is used to help in the health maintenance of those suffering from Type-1 and Type-2 diabetes.
It can be used for treatment of such liver disorders as hepatitis and jaundice.
Some use it for purifying the blood and cleansing the system.
Dandelion Tea can help in relieving digestive disorders such as constipation and diarrhea.
It also has properties that can help cleanse and improve the skin.
The steam from the tea is believed by some, to help call spirit entities. Roots, leaves, and flowers can be used in sachets or dream pillows for psychic dreaming and wishes. The flowers can be sewn into small red flannel bag and worn around the neck for wishes.
As you can see, there is more to this little flower than meets the eye. The cheery yellow flowers and airy white puffs of dandelion seed heads have enjoyed much magic and folklore over the centuries. They have been included in the areas of divination, wishes, good luck, communicating with spirits, and dreams. In magic, the little dandelion is bound to fire and Jupiter.
Many beliefs involve blowing on the seed head to tell us something we want to know, and I would bet you have picked a dandelion or two and done the same with it.
Here are some of the myths and lore of the little dandelion, I would bet you've heard some of them...
If you blow hard on a dandelion seed head and all the seeds blow off, a wish will come true.
If a woman blows hard on a seed head and all the seeds blow off, her lover loves only her. If seeds remain, he is not loyal.
Blow hard on a seed head and the number of seeds left will tell you how many children you will have.
Blow on a seed head and the number of seeds left will tell you how many years you have left.
Blow on a seed head until all the seeds are gone. The number of puffs it took will tell you what time it is. Alternatively, blow three times on the seed head and the number of seeds left will tell the time.
Blow on a seed head and your wish will be carried to your lover.
If you see seeds falling off the seed head when there is no wind, rain is on the way.
Dandelion flowers also have a deep folkloric history, and beliefs include the following:
If a child picks a dandelion flower off the plant, he will wet the bed that night.
To find out if you will be rich, put a dandelion flower under your chin, and the degree of the glow on your chin will be the degree of your financial success.
If you rub yourself all over with dandelion flowers, you will be welcome everywhere you go and your wishes will be granted.
Here is a recipe that uses the dandelion. Make sure if you pick them from the wild, or from your own yard, that they are totally pesticide free and have not been sprayed or treated with chemicals.
Dandelion Scrambled Eggs 15 dandelion buds 4 open dandelion flowers (washed) 4 eggs 1 tablespoon butter Water or milk - 1-2 tbsp.
Melt butter in a medium-sized frying pan. Add dandelion buds and saute until they begin to open. With a fork or whisk, beat the eggs until frothy. Add a bit of milk or water if desired. Pour the eggs into the pan with the buds, and stir continuously until they reach the desired consistency. Garnish with fresh dandelion flowers. Serves 2.
I have a little recipe that isn't hard to make, but you must always start it as soon as you awake.
Take a great big mixing bowl and fill it with a smile, Mix half a cup of sunshine with good deeds to last a while. Add a pinch of work and play, a pinch of thoughtfulness and care, But don't bake it in the oven, just spread it around everywhere.
My husband loves Prune Danish and we've been unable to locate it in our area. To surprise him I thought I'd try my hand at making him one from scratch. This isn't the flaky type that some are used to but it turned out well and he loves it. I may have added a bit more prune than 1 cup, which is why it appears thick. You can adjust to how you like it.
Ingredients: 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons quick or old fashioned oats (divided use) 5 tablespoons butter, melted (I used I Can't Believe It's Not Butter cubes) 1/3 cup finely chopped almonds, pecans or walnuts 1/3 cup granulated sugar 2 large egg whites, each lightly beaten (divided use) 3/4 teaspoon almond extract 1 pound bread dough, (you can use the frozen dough,thaw first at room temperature) 1 cup whole pitted prunes, chopped finely
Lightly grease a baking sheet with vegetable shortening or use parchment as I did.
In medium bowl combine 1 cup oats and butter; mix well. Stir in almonds, sugar, 1 egg white and almond extract.
Turn bread dough out onto lightly floured surface. (I found it easier to pat the dough out on to the parchement lined cookie sheet so I didn't have to lift it to move after spreading mixture on it). Roll or pat dough into a 12 x 10-inch rectangle.
Spread oat mixture in narrow strip down middle; top with prunes. On each side of filling, cut 3-inch diagonal slits 2-inches apart. Fold alternating strips of dough over filling to form a braid pattern, pinching ends of strips to seal.
Transfer to prepared baking sheet. Cover; let rise in warm place 30 minutes or until almost doubled in size.
Heat oven to 350°F (175°C). Brush loaf with remaining egg white; sprinkle with remaining 2 tablespoons oats.
Bake for 30 to 35 minutes or until golden brown. Serve warm. If you would like to glaze it as I did, cool first and glaze with a powdered sugar glaze.
Strawberry Bread is scenting the cottage and I just know you'll love this recipe! I purchased a few to many strawberries at the Farmer's Market last week so I decided to bake a couple loaves of this luscious bread. I was thinking as I had this for tea, that it might just make a wonderful French Toast! I will have to give that a try in the future. I made up a glaze for the top but you don't have to. It's very tasty as is, especially fresh from the oven.
Bake a double batch, this bread freezes well!
Ingredients: 2 c. flour 1 c. sugar 1 tsp. baking powder 2 tsp. baking soda 1/4 tsp salt 1/2 c. applesauce 2 egg whites, beaten 2 tsp vanilla 1 tsp cinnamon 2 c. fresh strawberries, diced
Mix together sugar, applesauce, egg whites and vanilla. Add the dry ingredients and mix until just moistened.
Stir in the strawberries.
Spread into a greased loaf pan and bake at 350 for 35-45 minutes or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean.
With its delicate soft, round petals and gentle curves the camellia is considered a symbol of desire, passion, and refinement. It indicates a deep longing in the heart for your beloved. It is also a symbol of perfection and excellence. Give camellia’s to your sweetheart. Better yet, give some of these lovely flowers as a secret admirer!
I see a lot of shoppers purchasing the whipped butter in the tubs these days, but if you're like me and still like cubes, here is a great tip to keep that cube from sliding off the butter dish as you retrieve it from your refrigerator. Heat your butter dish with real hot tap water and dry the dish off. Put the butter stick on the dish and place it back in refrigerator. It will melt slightly on to the dish and when the butter gets cold it will be stuck and prevent it from sliding.
I am one with a belief that almost anything can be healed with the proper foods. I came across this information and am passing it on to others in the hope that it might help in your journey to health.
Did you know: Garlic is a Super Immune System Booster - For thousands of years, garlic has been used as both a food, and as a medicinal herb, and with good reason. Garlic contains an amino acid called "alliin". This acts as an antibacterial and antifungal. Eaten regularly, garlic is said to help prevent heart desease, lower blood cholesterol, wash out fats, and increse the protective HDL's (high-density lipoproteins) while decreasing the heart damaging LDL's (low-density lipoproteins).
Garlic is also able to inhibit clot formation, which in turn reduces the risk of heart attack and stroke.
Garlic has been used for treating high blood pressure, and has been made note of in several studies regarding anticancer activity.
It has also been shown that garlic may slow or stop the growth of various fungi and molds, including:
Candida albicans, a yeast that causes vaginitis and a wide variety of health problems.
Histoplasma capsulatum, a fungus carried by dust, which causes a disease similar to tuberculosis.
One of the most exciting effects of garlic is its ability to detoxify the body, which in turn, further boosts the immune system.
This may be surprising, but another wonderfood which is far too often overlooked is:
Onion - Immunologists have found that the onion is an anti-thrombotic known to inhibit blood clots and also acts as a serious stimulant for weak heart muscles in cardiovascular ailments. The onion bulb develops a substance of sulfuric acid known as "alliin".
The onion is also a source of "quercetin" which is an anti-cancer substance that fights bacterial invasion.
DID YOU KNOW: The average person hosts up to FIVE POUNDS of bacteria in the colon! The quercetin in onions and other yellow vegetables helps to regulate and eliminate the danger this poses to your health and immune system.
Include several garlic cloves together with several small onions in your daily diet. They add flavor to salads, sauces, salsa, and entrees. To combat the effects of odor on your breath, chew raw carrot sticks after your meal, or chew peppermint leaves that you grow in your herb garden, or in a pot on your kitchen window.
Out-of-Shape Immune Systems We all know the signs that prove that our bodies are "out of shape". Our body fat increases, we tire more easily, walking short distances can tire us or cause us to be short of breath, and we usually find it hard to become motivated to make changes. We get depressed more easily, we don't eat right, and we don't care about exercise. What does this have to do with our immune system? ...just about everything... When the immune system is "out of shape", we feel fatigued, we lose the fight against depression, our hearing and eyesight begins to fail, we have muscle aches, digestion problems, find it hard to get restful sleep, and have no energy for even the most mundane of things. Just as we have to keep our bodies healthy, we have to do the things that will keep our immune systems healthy. Improve the diet Get more sleep Get the right kind of exercise in the right amounts Improve the attitudes that dicate how we handle stress
9 Essential Immune Boosting Nutrients Vitimin A and Beta-Carotene Found in most fruits and vegetables, especially yellow - carrots, cantaloupe, yams (sweet potatoes) Protects against tumor growth and cancerous disorders Boosts white blood cells that detoxify your system
Vitimin B6 Whole grains, potatoes, nuts, lean meats, poultry, dark leafy vegetables Helps to distribute the needed amino acids that build and repair the cellular walls of your immune system to resist infectious diseases
Folate Found in legumes, salmon, dark leafy vegetables, eggs and liver (eggs and liver are high in cholesterol - consume in moderation) Essential in the formation of cells, especially red blood cells
Vitamin C Citrus fruits, tomatoes, cabbage, and other raw leafy vegetables, strawberries, melons, kiwi (excellent source in small package - 2 kiwi provide a day's RDA of Vitamin C) Essential to the healing of wounds, formation and maintenace of the capillary walls, guards against infection by stimulating white blood cells
Vitamin E Wheat germ, whole grains, vegetabel oils, cereals Strengthens the immune system at several levels. Prevents damage to cells, stimulates white blood cells. Effective and lifesaving antioxidant
Selenium Seafoods, lean meats, poultry, eggs, whole grains, and garlic Guards against damage, builds resistance to tissue breakdown and counteracts the effects of toxic byproducts
Zinc Whole grains, oats, seafood, eggs, meat and poultry Boosts energy levels, is a helper in many immune functions, needed for insulin to work and for carbohydrates to metabolize
Iron Liver, green leafy vegetables, raisins, whole grain breads and cereals, prune juice, wheat bran, and brewer's yeast Oxygen carrying element of the blood, and an essential part of every cell.
Omega-3 Fatty Acids Seafoods, trout, mackerel, and salmon Valuable in increasing the activity of the white blood cells and are important in the cleansing and detoxification of your system.
Did you realize that citrine is actually rare? Most of the citrine found on the market today is simply amethyst which has been heat treated.
In the Late Victorian era citrine was often set with other semiprecious stones such as bloodstones, carnelian & garnets. In ancient times, citrine was believed to ward off evil thoughts and was carried as protection against the plague, skin problems and snake bites. It was one of the stones used in the breastplate of the High Priest.
Citrine prepares your body, emotions and mind to accept a greater flow of the yellow color ray. The yellow ray is the aspect of life force that helps us release what no longer serves us. Citrine also aids the kidneys, liver, spleen and intestines.
Known as "The Merchant's Stone", citrine is said to bring prosperity when placed in a cash register as if drawing the money there. Since citrine is reported to hold no negativity, it never requires cleansing or clearing.
Metaphysical Properties: Astrological Sign(s): Libra, Gemini, Aries, Leo
Solar Plexus Chakra.
Abundance ("The Merchant's Stone).
This stones brings a bright, sunny and sensual warmth to your life.
Here are a few herbal remedies to help ease anxiety and stress. Please note that if you take any medications, please consult your physician before consuming or using herbs or herbal teas to avoid interactions. Also, if you are pregnant, consult your Dr. as well. Some medications and herbs are not compatible.
Massage your temples with lavender oil.
Drink chamomile tea to ease stress.
Drink rosemary tea to alleviate melancholy or depression.
For a relaxing body rub, soak equal parts finely shopped dandelions, burdock (roots and/or aerial parts), yellow dock, and lobelia in 1 quart rubbing alcohol for two weeks. Apply externally.
Trying to remain relaxed but alert? Some studies suggest that the smell of apples, apple cider vinegar, or spiced apples have this effect.
A tea of elderberry flowers is considered relaxing to the nerves and is sleep inducing.
For insomnia, drink bee balm or chamomile tea and eat mandarin oranges.
With the weather warming up soon I've been looking for low calorie sorbet recipes instead of the high fat ice creams I usually have whirring up in my ice cream maker. We love lemon so I thought this would be perfect!
Ingredients: 1 cup water 1 cup sugar 1 cup fresh lemon juice 1 tablespoon lemon zest Preparation: In a small saucepan, bring the water and the sugar to a boil, stirring the mixture to dissolve the sugar. Add the lemon juice and zest to the sugar syrup and freeze in an ice cream maker according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
I have been attempting to cut calories of late but teatime just wouldn't be the same without a sweet of some sort. I came upon this recipe and thought it perfect! These cookies are quite tasty and have a cake-like texture. If you love both chocolate and banana you won't be disappointed.
Ingredients: 1/3 cup butter, softened (As usual, I use I can't believe it's not butter cubes) 1/2 cup sugar 1 egg 1/2 cup mashed ripe banana 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract 1 cup all purpose flour 1 teaspoon baking powder 1/4 teaspoon salt 1/8 teaspoon baking soda 1 cup (6 ounces) semisweet chocolate chips
In a small mixing bowl, cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in the egg, banana and vanilla. Add flour, baking powder, salt, and baking soda and mix. Stir in chocolate chips.
Drop by a tablespoonful 2 inches apart on a cookie sheet with parchment, silpat sheet or sprayed with cooking spray. Bake at 350 degrees for 9-11 minutes or until light golden brown.
1 cookie = 66 calories, 3 grams fat (2g sat fat), 10 mg cholesterol, 51 mg sodium, 9 g carbs. Diabetic Exchange is 1/2 starch, 1/2 fat.
That you can give acid loving plants like azaleas, rhododendrons, hydrangeas and gardenias a little help by watering them with a white distilled vinegar solution now and again? A cup of white distilled vinegar to a gallon of tap water is a good mixture and they will thank you for it.
And surprise someone with a handwritten note! In this day of emailing, how many of us are able to enjoy visiting the postbox and spying anything but bills and perhaps the odd magazine or catalog now and again? I know when a personal missive catches my eye amongst the day's delivery, I am overjoyed. (Thank you to my daughter, granddaughter and daughter-in-law :)
If you love letter writing and calligraphy pens as I do, you can make your own scented ink and announce your correspondence as soon as the recipient opens their postal box.
Scented ink will give a delicate, intangible fragrance to your personal letters, a fragrance that will waft out as soon as the envelope is opened and that will linger mysteriously over the pages.
Ingredients: 1/2 oz (15g) dried lavender flowers 6 tbsp water 1 small bottle ink
Crush the lavender and put into a saucepan with the water. Bring them to the boil and simmer for about 30 minutes or until you have 2 tablespoons brown, opaque liquid left. Strain, pressing down well. Mix the liquid with the ink.
Wearing copper bracelets for medicinal benefits has a long history, all the way back to ancient Egypt. It is a commonly held belief that by wearing copper jewelry, your skin will absorb certain minerals and as a result, impact your health positively. Copper is an essential trace mineral that helps melanin production in the skin, aids in the production of red blood cells, and increases the absorption and transportation of iron.
The first time I remember seeing copper jewelry was on my grandmother. I remember her wearing a copper bracelet every day. I was young then, but I wish I had known to ask her about it.
The highest concentrations of copper are in the liver and brain, but it is located throughout the body. Many problems can occur if you don't get enough of it in your diet. Heart problems are possible, like the build-up of plaque in your arteries or a more serious condition known as an aortic aneurysm, a ballooning out and possible rupture of the aorta. Copper deficiency can cause an increase in bad cholesterol and a decrease in good cholesterol.
Copper jewelry can also be worn to alleviate the cramp like pains of menstruation and it is also said to promote the smooth functioning of the glands. Claims have included easing the pain of arthritis or helping to improve the condition and appearance of skin. It encourages a positive attitude, self-confidence and improves decision making. To use its healing powers, Copper is best worn directly on the skin, such as a bracelet or ring.
I posted this first in 2010 and thought it worthy of a repost. I hope you feel the same.
Imagine life as a game in which you are juggling five balls in the air. You name them - work, family, health, friends, and spirit - and you're keeping all of these in the air. You will soon understand that work is a rubber ball. If you drop it, it will bounce back. But the other four balls - family, health, friends, and spirit are made of glass. If you drop one of these, they will be irrevocably scuffed, marked, nicked, damaged, or even shattered. They will never be the same. You must understand that and strive for balance in your life.
Brian Dyson, CEO of Coca Cola Enterprises from 1959-1994
Cleanse negative attitudes in situations and places, promote happiness, have positive business deals, attract good things, career, goals, stimulation, power, luck, assist in dealing with sudden changes, energy building, enthusiasm, attract success and prosperity, emotional healing, courage and ambition.
Cherry Quartz is a stone of relationship and focus. It enhances ones intention and clarity between people, ones self, and the divine.
Despite its name, cherry quartz is not a natural stone or even quartz. A form of glass with translucent or opaque inclusions within a transparent colorless matrix, it has to be cast into large blocks, which are then physically carved into smaller shapes. There are only two genuine "fruit" quartz: strawberry quartz, which is accentuated by small seed like inclusions of lepidocrocite and hematite, and pineapple quartz, which is a form of citrine with an unusual growth pattern of crystals around its sides similar to pineapple fruit.
This stone brings new hope, acts as an anti-depressant, brings relief from anxiety, sexual problems related to tension, and helps develop vision for the bigger picture.
Cherry quartz is also an energy stone and a powerful healing stone. The healing properties are used to aid respiratory difficulties,regeneration of cells, and flow of energy throughout the body, and is an excellent balancing stone for a sad or weak heart.
The malt in the Guinness beer intensifies the flavor of the chocolate in these delicious brownies. The texture is a combination of fudge and traditional brownies. Although decadently chocolate, they are surprisingly light. Not to worry, there is no guinness taste to these brownies so even if you are not a guinness fan, you will love them.
Ingredients: 1 cup all-purpose flour 3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder 1/4 teaspoon salt 6 tablespoons unsalted room temperature butter, cut into cubes 8 ounces dark bittersweet chocolate, chopped 3/4 cup white chocolate chips 4 large eggs, at room temperature 1 cup superfine or granulated sugar 1-1/4 cups (10 ounces) Guinness Extra Stout beer (The Guinness should be at room temperature. This recipe uses a little less than a standard 12-ounce bottle of Guinness stout beer. Do not include foam in the measurement.) 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips 1/8 cup (about) confectioners' sugar for dusting
Preparation: Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Spray a 9 x 13-inch baking pan with Pam or other nonstick spray.
In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, cocoa powder, and salt until evenly combined. Set aside.
Melt butter, bittersweet chocolate, and white chocolate chips over very low heat, stirring constantly until melted. Remove from heat.
In a large mixing bowl, beat eggs and sugar on high speed until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add melted chocolate mixture, beating until combined.
Beat reserved flour mixture into melted chocolate mixture. Whisk in Guinness stout beer. The batter will seem a bit thin. Drop semisweet chocolate chips evenly on top of batter (they will sink in).
Pour into prepared baking pan. Bake 25 to 30 minutes on center rack in the oven, until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out almost clean.
Let brownies cool, uncovered, to room temperature. Dust with confectioners' sugar before serving.
You should come upon a flock of sheep on a journey, know that it is an omen of good luck! An old Manx belief states that sheep cannot be counted accurately unless the person counting them has washed his or her eyes under running water first. Peaceful sheep, lying in the field, are said to herald fine weather, but rain is foretold if they are restless and baa for no apparent reason. Oh, what to do if you find them right out your door!
When I read this recipe for a Victorian Era hair straightner, not only images of attempting to get this mixture out of my hair surfaced, but I could even imagine the smell of it. I'm not sure about you, but I'd rather live with wavy, kinky or curly hair! After all, they were big on barrettes and bonnets too!
Ingredients: 1 lb. beef suet 2 oz. yellow wax 2 oz. castor oil 12 grains of benzoic acid 30 drops of lemon oil 5 drips of cinnamon oil
Place the wax and suet in a double boiler and melt, then add the castor oil and the benzoic acid. Mix and remove from heat. Allow to cool and then add the oils. Blend all ingredients well and rub a small amount into the hair twice a day. Massage with the fingertips and this preparation should make kinky hair straight and allow it to lie flat.
Victorian-era women of "class and breeding" -- or those who aspired to appear as such -- learned the womanly arts of proper housekeeping, dressing, deportment, meal preparation, entertaining, and family upkeep from a wide variety of publications. These included manuals, guidebooks, pamphlets, magazines, and other periodicals. These and other pieces of similar wisdom -- some seemingly timeless and others now laughably dated -- were influential in the way Concord women conducted their lives, relationships and activities.
If the value of good breeding is in danger of becoming depreciated, it is only necessary to compare the impression which a gentle, pleasant demeanor leaves upon you with the gruff, abrupt, or indifferent carriage of those who affect to despise good manners. Indeed, society could not be maintained save for the usages of etiquette.
Incorporate some of these Victorian habits in to your daily life and see if you are left feeling even a little more "proper" and note how differently you are treated.
Carry Yourself with Grace. The beauties of the charming picture framed by one's dress are enhanced by moving with grace. To walk with style is rare enough, but when it comes to being able to sit down in a dress properly -- well, there are not many equal to that.
Be Graceful in Your Manners. A lady should be quiet in her manners, natural and unassuming in her language, careful to wound no one's feelings, but giving generously and freely from the treasures of her pure mind to her friends. She should scorn no one openly but have a gentle pity for the unfortunate, the inferior, and the ignorant, at the same time carrying herself with an innocence and singleheartedness that disarm ill nature and win respect and love from all. Such a lady is a model for her sex, the "bright particular star" on which men look with reference. The influence of such a woman is a power for good that cannot be overestimated. (Ok...I know this seems over the top in this day and age, but think about how women have influence over situations, things aren't so different today.)
Limit Your Observations. A boisterous, loud-talking man is disagreeable enough, but a woman who falls into the habit is almost unendurable. Many times have we seen an inoffensive husband tucked completely out of sight by the superabundant flow of volubility proceeding from a wife, who, we like to believe, is by nature intended to be the gentler and restraining element.
Be Not Excessively Frank. Do not take pride in offensively expressing yourself on every occasion under the impression that you will be admired for your frankness. Speaking one's mind is an extravagance, which has ruined many a person.
Always Accept Apologies. Only ungenerous minds will not do so. If one is due from you, make it unhesitatingly.
Listen. When a "tale of woe" is poured into your ears, even though you cannot sympathize, do not wound by appearing indifferent. True politeness decrees that you shall listen patiently and respond kindly.
Laugh at the Appropriate Time. Don't laugh when a funny thing is being said until the climax is reached. Do not laugh at your own wit; allow others to do that.
Kiss Sparingly. Many times a contagious disease has been conveyed in a kiss. The kiss is a seal of pure and earnest love and should never be exchanged save between nearest and dearest friends and relatives. Indeed, public sentiment and good taste decree that even among lovers it should not be so often indulged in as to cause any regret on the part of the lady should an engagement chance to be broken off. Let promiscuous kissing, then, be consigned to the tomb of oblivion.
Use Tact When Admonishment is Necessary. Tact is needed in a friend to show us our weaknesses; also with employers and parents. How many do harm instead of good in their manner of rebuking, sounding instead of rousing the self-respect of those they reprimand?
Refrain from Eyeing Over Other Women. Few observant persons have failed to notice the manner in which one woman, who is not perfectly well bred or perfectly kind hearted, eye over another woman, whom she thinks is not in such good society and, above all, not at the time being in so costly a dress as she herself is in. Who cannot recall hundreds of instances of that sweep of the eye, which takes in a glance the whole woman and what she has on from top-knot to shoe-tie. It is done in an instant. No other evidence than this eyeing is needed that a woman, whatever be her birth or breeding, has a small and vulgar soul.
Treat Enemies Kindly. If you have an enemy and an opportunity occurs to benefit the person in matters great or small, do good service without hesitation. If you would know what it is to feel noble and strong within yourself, do this secretly and keep it secret. A person who can act thus, will soon feel at ease anywhere. If enemies meet at a friend's house, lay aside all appearance of animosity while there and meet on courteous terms.
Greet Friends with Discretion. A lady does not call out to friends or inquire after their health in a boisterous fashion. Ladies do not rush up to each other and kiss effusively. It is a foolish practice for ladies to kiss each other every time they meet, particularly on the street. It is positively vulgar; a refined woman shrinks from any act that makes her conspicuous. Such practice belongs rather to the period of "gush" natural to very young girls and should be discouraged on physiological grounds, if no other.
Ok..when you're through laughing please read through the post again and imagine the updated versions of these offenses. I know you've seen them all but in different degrees. Most are still unacceptable but are practiced daily. I say let's bring back manners and ettiquette!
Do you or someone you know like almonds? This is an easy recipe that doesn't take long to make and is sure to please. Put in glass jars or decorative tins and they make wonderful gifts as well as great hostess gifts when you arrive at those summer barbecues.
Cook Time: 15 minutes Ingredients: 3 tablespoons butter 2 teaspoons dried rosemary, crushed ¾ teaspoon salt ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper 2 cups raw almonds Preparation: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Use a baking sheet with a rim. Melt butter. Mix seasoning into the butter, and then toss in almonds. Pour on to baking sheet. Bake seasoned nuts for about 10-12 minutes, stirring once, until toasted and fragrant. Remove from heat and let cool. These are also wonderful when eaten warm!
This recipe is wonderful because you almost always have the ingredients on hand. They are healthy and can be a meal or a treat. This makes approximately 20 crepes if you have 1 per serving.
Ingredients: 1-1/3 cup unsweetened soymilk 1 cup whole wheat flour 2 egg whites 1/2 cup water Directions: 1. Place all ingredients in a blender and blend on highest setting. 2. Meanwhile, heat a non-stick skillet over medium heat. Optional, but suggested: spray a light coating of nonstick cooking spray on the pan about every 3-4 crepes. 3. Using a 1/8 cup, equivalent to 2 tablespoons, spoon batter on to the pan and quickly swirl the pan so the thin batter will become a circle shape. (The batter should be paper-thin.) 4. Using a fork, check the underside of the crepe every so often so it is as golden or brown as you like (this only takes a few seconds). 5. When your crepe is the way you like it, slide it on to a plate, and you're ready to fill it. 6. To fill it, choose any of your favorite fillings (see list below for some ideas), and fill one side of crepe. 7. There are MANY different ways to fold a crepe. Some easy ones are rolling it up like a burrito, folding it in half like an omelette, or folding it into quarters to form triangles.
(You can stack your crepes with alternating sheets of wax paper in between and store them in the refrigerator or freezer for later use.)
POSSIBLE FILLINGS: BREAKFAST: ~ egg whites, lean sausage/bacon/ham, low fat cheese, fresh fruits such as apple (drizzle with apple syrup in recipe below), fat free whipped cream LUNCH: ~ tuna, veggies ~ lean deli meats and cheese DINNER: ~ chicken breast and mushrooms (either fresh or in a healthy sauce) ~ spinach, cheese, mushrooms ~ smoked fish (salmon) ~ lean ground meat and salsa DESSERT ~ fat free chocolate/caramel sauce and fresh fruit ~ apples/pears and cinnamon ~ fresh orange slices ~ sugar free pie fillings ~ sugar free jam or preserves ~ sugar free maple syrup and fat free ice cream
You need a village, if only for the pleasure of leaving it. A village means that you are not alone, knowing that in the people, the trees, the earth, there is something that belongs to you, waiting for you when you are not there. ~Casare Pavese
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Welcome! Please pour yourself a cup of tea and settle in and relax with me awhile. As you'll notice, I am captivated by ancient times, a soul misplaced in this modern day. I have a love for my ancestry and I believe people who grow up without a sense of how yesterday has affected today, are unlikely to have a strong sense of how today affects tomorrow.