The new digital magazine Sweet Paul is up! This guy has a direct line to my crafting heart! It’s full of recipes, DIY’s - I love it!
Hello! I thought I’d show you what I’ve been up to:
I’m preparing for my Green Living Workshop! My fridge is full of lemons and almost every one of them has the rind cut off. It looks like a mad person lives here. I have bottles of vinegar steeping in cupboards and months worth of jars saved up for the DIY part of the workshop.
It’s been a blast putting together these recipes, plus my house smells of lemon and peppermint… a bit of a hint as to what we’ll be making in the workshop! :)
Why make our own cleaning products? Because it is a simple solution. The facts is that household cleaners are one of the major causes of indoor pollution. Did you know that indoor air can be up to 10 times worse than outdoor air! Many of the toxic chemicals found in household products do not biodegrade easily - which means that they linger in our homes long after they’ve been sprayed and used and accumulate in our bodies.
Studies have shown that housewives have a 55% greater risk of developing cancer compared to women who work outside of the home. The conclusion is that it’s the daily exposure to household cleaners that are routinely filled with carcinogens.
Not only that but expectant mothers who used a lot of household cleaning products during pregnancy, and shortly after birth, increased the risk of their child developing asthma.
And all this, because we are trying to keep a clean and healthy home! It’s maddening!
I’ve been preparing for this workshop for a while now and I take it very seriously. If you do a search on the internet for “green cleaning recipe”, there’s a lot of misinformation repackaged a million different ways! If we are to be successful in cleaning with natural ingredients and making our own cleaning products - it’s about knowing why these ingredients work, how they work and how they don’t.
Once you learn the base recipe - customizing your own natural scents, packaging it as gifts and getting your kids involved (baking soda and vinegar!) is really such great fun!
If you’d like to join in - go ahead and sign up because we’re planning to hold another session soon. This way too, I can find out from you what time suits you best!
To everyone who is joining in on Thursday - I look forward to meeting you! See you there :)
With all the treatments that we buy for our skin, we often neglect our lips, but they need extra love too! The skin on your lips is extremely thin and lacks oil glands, making them prone to dryness: that’s why they chap so easily…
I’ve got just the thing for you!
Lip scrubs are a beautiful treatment. They leave your lips soft, with a pretty, natural glow that you won’t want to cover up with lipstick. But, if you do wear lipstick, it will go on better than ever!
You can buy these scrubs at the store, but they’re not cheap and are often full of preservatives and unwanted chemicals! Let’s make our own! And, let’s use natural and nourishing ingredients that will rival any store-bought scrub!
Here’s what you’re using:
Coconut oil - a rich oil that nourishes the skin unlike vaseline or petroleum-based lip balms which can only coat your lips.
Honey - a humectant, which means it will help the lips to retain moisture. It also contains vitamins, minerals, and amino acids which nourish the skin. And it’s naturally anti-viral and anti-fungal (which is why it’s also great for acne and wound healing too).
Brown sugar - acts as your gentle (yummy) exfoliator
Flavors are up to you but if you use pure raw cacao powder or vanilla, you’re packing your scrub with antioxidants. Coffee helps to invigorate red blood cells, giving a lovely pink glow!
Let’s get started!
- 1 Tbls unrefined organic coconut oil (I bought mine here)
- 1 Tbls raw honey (manuka if you have it)
- 2 Tsp brown sugar
- flavors *optional* (vanilla, chocolate powder, coffee powder…)
- container - any small jar with a lid
- Blend your coconut oil and honey until smooth and creamy. (the coconut oil should be soft but solid to start - so if it’s melted, knock it in the fridge for 15 minutes before you blend)
- Once you have your creamy base - mix in your sugar and flavors, if you choose.
- Pack it in your jar and store it in the fridge - lasts for up to 2 weeks!
- To use: simply scoop out a bit and scrub. I’d say to rinse it off, but who are we kidding, I lick it off!
You could sell this stuff, it’s so great! Better yet, make a jar for a well deserving friend:
I made my scrub with cocoa powder and vanilla essence and I used an old vitamin jar to store it in. Does the trick!
Here’s a sweet DIY that I put together - a fortune cookie recipe for you to tell your loved one - “I’m so fortunate to have you, because…”
Dare I ask, what plans do you have for Valentines? If you’re anything like me… home with the family, in bed by 10pm. Not terribly romantic, but still, that doesn’t mean that we can’t make an ordinary Tuesday a little more special! Sure, we’re buying into a commercial idea, but so what, it’s fun and it’s important to celebrate each other!
For me, there is no better way to say I love you than by making something yourself. And, because you are making it, you can choose great ingredients and materials: eco-friendly, organic, natural and wholesome. Now, that’s romantic!
So let’s do it!
The cookie ingredients (makes 4):
- 1 egg white (Freedom Range Eggs from Singapore’s own cage free chicken farm! $2.90 for 6 eggs)
- 1/4 cup of flour
- 3 Tablespoons of butter
- 3 Tablespoons of raw unrefined sugar (Unrefined sugar contains minerals and nutrients that are stripped from refined white sugar. Did you know: brown sugar is often just white refined sugar that has been coated in brown molasses!)
- Pinch of salt
- Dash of pure vanilla extract
Preheat the oven to 180 degrees celsius.
In a bowl, mix together your egg white, sugar, vanilla, butter and blend well. Then mix in the flour and salt - blend it all up.
Take a tablespoon of batter and plop in on your cookie sheet (mine is silicone and it’s fantastic) or parchment paper. Then, with the back of your spoon spread out the mixture to form a thin, even circle.
Knock it in the oven - and watch it carefully. It’s about 8 minutes, but what you want is for the edges to brown up, the center will remain a pale cream color.
While you’re waiting get your work station ready - the next step is all about speed and efficiency.
Work fast! Take your cookies out of the oven, place your fortune in the center…
Quick! Fold over your cookie in half then use the edge of a bowl to get the fortune cookie shape…ouch, it’s hot! This part hurts a bit, I won’t lie :)
Place your folded cookie in a muffin pan to hold the shape as it cools…So why the big rush? You only have about 30 seconds to work before the cookie cools and cracks at the bend. If it did cool down, don’t fold it, put it back in oven for a few seconds to warm up again.
We’re going to serve our fortune cookie a-la-mode. I chose Julie’s Organic Ice-cream because it’s yummy and made with quality ingredients. No junk. This tub was on sale for only $8.95!! Always look in the organic section for a good deal.
Now…comes the fun part. Surprise your loved one with their little treat and watch as they break open their fortune cookie…it’s sure to bring a big smile to their face!
Tip: It’s best to start with one cookie at a time. Have all of your fortune strips written out before hand and have an organized and clean working station. You have to work fast! The recipe is for 4 cookies, so adjust it as you need.
Idea: You can make some cookies and package them for friends. Write a sweet little message about why they are important to you. Everyone can use a little reminder here and there! Spread the joy!