Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Dried Kale Flakes!

Idea: replace Parsley flakes with Kale Flakes!
Add dried Kale to your seasonings rack for extra nutrients! It's easy! DIY homemade seasonings that are super good for you and your family!! Yay!!!
Kale is a super, SUPER Food!
Fabulous for having Vitamins C, A, and K, plus calcium, potassium, and lutein.  Kale also has: cancer fighting properties, lowers cholesterol, is anti-inflamatory,  high in anti-oxidants, carotinoids, folic acid, and is low in carbs.

However, it isn't always easy to get the whole family to eat Kale.
But you can sneak it in as a seasoning! Add Dried Kale Flakes to soups, salads, meatloaf, stews, casseroles, pizzas, omelets, scrambled eggs, or dust your foods with it like a garnish just as you would parsley flakes! Versatile! Pour it on! Sprinkle it on! Stir it in!

To dehydrate:
Clean kale leaves and either lay them out to dry from the washing or pat them dry (the less water on them to start the faster they'll dry in dehydrator. Cut of the thick stems- they do not flake very well. You basically want the leafy green. Place these in dehydrator in single layer, and dry at 135 F for about 4-6 hours, depending on the humidity in your area.  When dried to crisp, let completely cool, and then place into food processor, pulsing until you reach the desired size of flakes wanted for seasoning. process longer to get a powder- the size and consistency is completely up to you.  I put mine into a mason jar, but you can reuse a seasonings jar as well, & store in cool dry place.

You might like to try:

Disclaimer: Affiliate Links in no way affect your end price, there is no increase for you. But, they do help to support the cost of the blog. Thank you.

Friday, July 26, 2013

I'm working on it!

My quick apologies for being absent these last two weeks!

I haven't forgotten you!
Moving woes took over and packing can be so time consuming!

I hope all is well and I am currently working on some Unschooling ideas to share, and DIY projects to help out with school! Yay!

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Earthpaste: A Review, Giveaway, and a Capture of changing toothpaste


Try this fact: 100% All Natural. 5 simple ingredients: Purified water, Redmond Clay, Xylitol, Essential Oil, Real Salt.
So natural you could eat it.
So effective you'll never have felt your teeth so clean.
So safe, your baby, toddler, and young child could use it worry free. This toothpaste re-mineralizes teeth, helps young one's teeth grow stronger; and has zero ingredients that are dangerous, toxic, or require poison warning labels.

A Review:

It tastes fantastic! It leaves your mouth feeling fresh, squeaky clean, and "slickery". That's the only way I could describe it- against the gums there is no build up, no residue, nothing left for my floss to find- just slickery clean! I love it! My favorite is the Peppermint; so fresh and strong I do not need to worry about fresh breath!  My second favorite is actually the Lemon Twist! (Grin) Although this is the Earthpaste specifially for kids, it's awesome for adults!
Final result after a week of trying Earthpaste: Our family agrees! Earthpaste is awesome! Truly a win-win for my family! Thank you, Redmond!

A capture of changing toothpaste

Amazing how the entire family can get so used to one particular kind. But after explaining and heavy discussion we have agreed to give it a try. 

The reality of the family trying Earthpaste, for full review:

We gave it a week. All of us. We tried Peppermint and Lemon Twist Earthpaste.
I happen to love it! It took some getting used to, but after about 2 brushings I had it down.
What's different?  First: it doesn't foam,-no foaming agents- so the first time I brushed, I wondered if enough was there. But that question didn't remain valid- simply because even as I brushed, I could feel it work. Second: it's brownish in color. That's because of the clay, naturally. But after 40 years of "white & bright" store bought conventional toothpaste, it takes a second glance to get used to.
I gave it a full week, and I am so impressed! Actually I love it! I no longer feel build up between teeth or at the gum line- it's so clean it's slickery!!!!  Flossing doesn't get very much anymore- it's as if the old toothpaste (beyond it's fluoride problems) never really got it as squeeky clean. Before, I could brush 3x a day and still feel a grit grime between my teeth at the end of the day- but I do not with Earthpaste! I was sent peppermint flavor and I have to attest to the freshest breath afterward! That alone was a huge winning point.
Also I must note it is gentle on my sensitive teeth- a factor I wasn't sure about. But since using it, I haven't noticed the sensitivity as much. Maybe it's just me- or maybe- it's just healthier for my teeth all around. :) 

My oldest son jumped right in there with me, and has used it as much as I have! The only complaint I heard was the "not foaming is hard to get used to". He never had a problem with the color, like me- but what do you expect from boys?! He now wants to try out wintergreen and cinnamon! Aparently Lemon Twist is okay- but he likes the fresh breath coming from Peppermint! This fact alone makes me smile- because if he objected to the toothpaste, he wouldn't ask for more! I consider this a big win from my teen!

My youngest was more hesitant. He's never been huge fan of brushing teeth and is the one of my kids I fought the most over the habit when he was little. He doesn't like the Peppermint, feels it's too strong of flavor! However- He agrees with me that the Lemon Twist is a win! Yay!

I have noticed in this week, both boys are brushing more; and as a mother, I cannot complain one bit over that! Never happened with store bought brands!

They are smiling!  
We are changing toothpaste - becoming Mud Mouths! 
Earthpaste is awesome!

Why Change?

When I was a kid my Mom was informed that the spots on my teeth were due to taking in too much Fluoride. The multi-vitamins I took then contained Fluoride. The water we drank contained Fluoride. The toothpaste I use contained Fluoride. The spots on my teeth- were bad. They call it Dental Fluorosis.

What they didn't tell us was Fluoride is toxic, it is a poison! It is not meant to be ingested. Toothpaste now has to be labeled with poison warnings. It didn't then. Sodium Fluoride, found in most toothpaste sold on store shelves, can lead to developmental/reproductive toxicity,  irritation (skin, eyes, or lungs); organ system toxicity and more! Simply put- it is toxic!
For more information on Fluoride dangers you can go to:  Fluoride Alert
Toothpaste sold on most store shelves also contain other ingredients that are toxic: the foaming agents, the saccharin, the preservatives, ingredients you cannot pronounce or understand  like: PROPYLPARABEN, METHYLPARABEN, COCAMIDOPROPYL BETAINE, (causing developmental/reproductive toxicity, ecotoxicology, endocrine disruption, immune disruption, etc.)
This is only a partial list, for more please see EWG Skin Deep Data Base.

It's scary what they ask us to use all in the name of beauty and healthcare - in this case - whiter teeth.

I was too young then to understand.
I was too misinformed by mass media to understand the dangers as a young adult.
I finally understand now. I can clean our teeth, gums, and have excellent oral health - 100% naturally.
I have made the move to switch toothpaste. And I love it! 

For more information on this product, please go to:

And now for the fun part!....


The wonderful people at Redmond Trading Co. have authorized me to run a Giveaway for a trial tube of Earthpaste to one lucky winner. One Winner will receive one tube of Earthpaste,4 oz,  in their choice of flavor (Peppermint, Wintergreen, Lemon Twist or Cinnamon) from Redmond Trading Co. Giveaway open to USA and Canada Residents only. (I am sorry international fans.) Giveaway is open from 7/10/13 until midnight on 7/24/13, a winner will be chosen at random using Rafflecopter. Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway
This  Giveaway is sponsored by Redmond Trading Co.,  I am not responsible for the product or in any way compensated for offering this giveaway.

 How I came to do a review:

A few weeks ago I was trying out a DIY recipe, and needed information on bentonite clay. So I contacted Redmond Clay and talked with a wonderful customer service agent, and found my answers immediately. (On a side note: I have to give an A+ rating to Redmond for Customer Service! I have never dealt with an easier company. Seriously felt like personalized attention- something that is just unheard of this day in age. )
In our conversation, I asked about the ability to use Redmond Clay in a DIY homemade toothpaste. The Customer Service Rep. answered everything truthfully- and then asked if I had tried Earthpaste. When I answered no, she offered a sample tube to try out! So, just to be clear - I am not getting paid for this review. I am simply sharing our experiences with the sample product and offering a review because truly, we love it! 
For more information on Redmond Trading Company, please go here: Redmond Trading Co.

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

DIY (Fake Shout) Laundry Stain Remover

DIY (Fake Shout) Laundry Stain Remover 

1 cup water
1/2 cup hydrogen peroxide
1/2 cup washing soda

Combine all ingredients well and pour into empty hydrogen peroxide bottle.(Hydrogen Peroxide requires dark bottles as sunlight decreases it's effectiveness.) Cap with spray bottle lid.

Pre-treat laundry by spraying directly onto stain, 5 minutes before tossing clothing into load.
Very similar to Shout- without harsh chemicals or toxins.

Another Green Clean! Yay!

For delicate material, or brightest colors- test a small spot first  to ensure doesn't bleach out color.
Great for whites, kid's clothes, ring around the collar and grass stains.

Label clearly, store with your homemade laundry soap, and keep out of reach of children.
(Note: Washing soda is more caustic than baking soda, and thus not recommended to eat  Be sure to label clearly.  To make your own Washing Soda: DIY Laundry Soap and Washing Soda.)

You might like the links at:
Mondays Homestead Barn Hop #118

Make your Own Monday 7/8

You can find items here:

Disclaimer: Affiliate Links in no way affect your end price, there is no increase for you. But, they do help to support the cost of the blog. Thank you.

Saturday, July 6, 2013

Importance of Reading to Your Children

Importance of Reading to Your Children. 

Children love stories. Nothing will spark imagination and eagerness for learning more than a good story they can fall into. Reading to your young ones is vital, and equally as important as teaching them the ABC's. 

Reading aloud to your children builds relationships between you and them; builds speech and vocabulary- which leads later to better academic skills and communication skills. It enhances their experiences, and gives them fuel for their imagination! This is important because, as children play, they will act out their imaginative skills in small scenarios and learn from the experiences, in ways that can help them later understand the real world better.

Reading to your children enhances their logical skills, and improves their concentration and self discipline.

Develop in them a love for a good story, and their own eagerness will make them want to learn what those letters are, and want to read it for themselves. Read with voices, characters, get into the story yourself. Use voice inflection, use gestures, smile, laugh when a character does; have fun with it yourself and your children will love story time.

Make sound effects- "whoosh!" or "ching-ching" went the swords.
Louis Carroll's Jabberwocky is fantastic for this! "Snicker snack!"
Or Edgar Allen Poe's the Tell Tale Heart; "thump-thump....thump-thump...." 
Pause for excitement....Stand up for declaration! Tiptoe for a child crossing the room to peek... Hide behind the couch cushions and peek over to see....

Read novels, not just baby books! Read a series, jump into adventure!  Read aloud! Reading novels encourages memory retention in young ones! Begin story time with a few minutes of chatting- by reviewing and asking your children- "what happened last night?" ... Big eyes might say back to you, "OH! The storm came and they saw the whale!" ... Allow them to recall, and watch for excitement  - learn from them which characters they like best- encourage the feed back! (this actually is the beginning steps to book reviews later on- hint, hint.)

Read to read. Enjoy it yourself- pick books you've heard of and never read yourself- try out a new one! Your enjoyment of it spreads to the kids! 

Did you know the magic wardrobe closet in Lion the Witch and Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis began in book one as a magic tree! Did you know that beyond the hype of the christian world's declaration of this series being about Jesus- (which if read straight through can be avoided, truly for secular students)- this series is a fantastic way to learn some history of England during the World Wars- when children were shipped off to far away homes to stay safe, as London was being bombed? Spark a history lesson from that one! Spark geography to look up the towns and places and maps!
Yay! Unschooling at it's best! Art lesson! Draw what you saw as we read it!

After reading White Fang by Jack London

Project Gutenberg

One of the most valuable resources I ever found was Project Gutenberg. An amazing collection of classics in e-book form ready to read. From Treasure Island to Tom Sawyer. If a book is 100 years old, Gutenberg has it, and the collection is so enormous you can read to, or with your child for years and not skim the surface of it vast library!
We read short stories and poetry from Edgar Allen Poe; poems of Emily Dickinson , Robert Frost, and Browning; collections of  Stevenson, Shakespeare, Mark Twain, and the immortal  "Call me Ishmael," i.e. Moby Dick by Herman Melville.
All for free.

I found for my own research the original Dr. Montessori's Own Handbook by Maria Montessori, The Louisa Alcott Reader: a Supplementary Reader for the Fourth Year of School. Countless history books! Endless resources! Countless Nature Books, Biology, Chemistry, Astronomy! How about Charles Darwin's journals and published works? Galileo? The Biography or the notebook of DaVinci? Yes! It's there! All free!

Amazon offers a Free Kindle reader download for your computers here: Free Kindle Reader Apps

It does not require special purchases to read these books! Just your computer.

To read is a subject that could be talked about for pages and pages; and I will be writing more on how to take a story time page and make it into a language arts lesson- but that comes later. I'm scratching the surface right now- but I hope I can whet an appetite for some. Read to your kids, but enjoy it yourself as you do - and you will find yourself surrounded by a house full of people passionate for love for reading!!

Nothing is more valuable than that!

We'd even have friends enjoy story time when they came over!

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Who's hungry in the heat?!

In my neck of the woods, it is just too hot to be hungry.
Our local temperatures and weather are causing warnings to be issued. Excessive heat can be scary.
 I push the liquids and have written a reminder about the heat: Summer is Here!

Summer is a time to careful and mindful of others. 
It's a time to be understanding of family, and patient as a Mom.
Kids can get cranky.
Adults can get cranky, and routines can dissolve right along with anything melting out in the sunshine.
I love our meal times together. I haven't been cooking a lot. My whole family seems to be nibbling a lot. Which is fine. It's just as a Mom, it seems for me hard to get used to.

So I question, Why do our appetites go down with the heat?  

It's actually not an easy answer to find; at least I didn't come across it so easily. But I did find some answers. Now, I am not a professional, but as I personally understand it-  in the cold weather our bodies need the extra nutrients in order to create and maintain our core temperatures of our bodies. However, in the excessive heat- the opposite is true. Our bodies have to fight to cool down our body's core temperature and fight to maintain a healthy temp. It does so through liquids, sweating, and naturally cooling. Think of an evaporative cooling system- water is pumped outward onto pads and air blown by picks up the moisture and cools down the air. Sweating and our bodies is very much like this. Water (Sweat) is poured outward and air blows by thus cooling the skin. It is vital part of being able to maintain health in the heat.
As gross as it sounds- In the excessive heat,  you actually want to sweat! Your body will crave liquids to perform and maintain this function. When it doesn't have enough you will become dehydrated. If you eat instead of drink fluids, your body's systems have to divert blood flow and fluids to process the food, and this takes away temporarily from your body's ability to maintain it's natural cooling system. That's why you get a nauseated feeling, after eating heavy in the high heat. Your body wants to reject this function and continue maintaining your core temp. Your body is in a kind of survival mode at that time, and will give you clues to help you be at your best.

Now, yes, you must eat in order to survive- but during the high heat of the day- it might be wise to avoid heavy foods. Eat small, eat light, and try to listen to your internal voice as to weather or not you need food or a glass of water.  Foods with a lot of water content are fantastic- small portions- snack on watermelon, tomatoes, cucumbers, fresh berries. Salads!  Infuse water with fruit and gain the extra nutrients naturally. Avoid alcohol and caffeine. Nibble, allow kids to nibble. It's okay to divert off the normal routine. safer and healthier for everyone!

Rest when you need to. Water water water, fluids fluids fluids.

Have fun, Be smart about it. Be safe!

Monday, July 1, 2013

DIY Greasy Hand Cleanser

 DIY Greasy Hand Cleanser

Have a man in the house always working on something? Mine is...
He was a Diesel Mechanic for Railway for many years. I learned over that time there is nothing to use against Cosmoline (a railroad mama's nightmare!) However, the regular grime and grease out that can happen with cars and small engine's is another story. And yes,  I have an answer for those greasy grimey hands that can often need extra strong cleaning.

DIY Greasy Hand Cleanser

1/4 c salt
1/4 c baking soda
1/4 c sugar
3/4 c Dawn dish soap-The blue stuff - (+-)
10 drops Tea tree essential oil (for anti bacterial properties) Lemon works well too! Or both. 
1 tbsp bentonite clay (optional -if you really need extra power)

In a tub that's reusable, but not breakable- (I used a rubbermaid tub that holds at least 2 c liquid) 
sift together the dry ingredients until thoroughly mixed. Add dawn dish soap and mix until thoroughly incorporated. If too paste- like, you can add more dawn until it comes out creamier, but not too liquid. You want the scrub capabilities!
Have that guy scrub, and rinse with warm water.

Works well as gardener's mix too. Especially after a long day in the dirt! :)Yay!

Better smelling than the orange gunk they usually use in the shop- but very effective. Better for them too, but you don't have to tell them that.   ;)

Shared with, and you might like the links at:
Monday's Homestead Barn Hop #117

Frugal Days Sustainable Ways #79

You can try:

Disclaimer: Affiliate Links in no way affect your end price, there is no increase for you. But, they do help to support the cost of the blog. Thank you.