Thursday, February 16, 2012

Citrus Detox Smoothie

After my surgery I was feeling really sluggish.  After a week and half of recovery I was feeling extra sluggish and foggy.  This smoothy will give you a kick and help your body feel like a well oiled machine.

Citrus Detox Smoothie:

1 grapefruit
2 oranges
2 cuties
1 inch chunk of fresh ginger root
1 cup of Almond milk
1-2 cups of cold water **depending on how watery you like it**
(I like mine with a little more pulp)

Throw it all in your blender and blend until smooth.  This smoothie is so delish!  I have been having this for breakfast all week.  I feel detoxified and more energetic.  Enjoy!

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Valentine's and a Shout out to Pinterest

Amy and I have been off the grid for a couple of weeks.  New jobs, waiting for babies to arrive (Amy is also doula), surgeries, and illnesses have kept us away from feeding our creative inner beasts.  

I could easily say that the past month has been monumentally hard on me.  It will be one of those that my husband and I will look back on and say: "Remember the winter of 2012?" Amidst all of the sickness and recovery we have also been tremendously blessed.
So, when the official day of love came around we were overcome with gratitude for all of the love we have in our lives.

 So thanks to a good friend I like to call , I was able to find last minute ideas for some cute Valentines.
I found the idea here.
  My oldest opted for a non sweet treat this year.

Idea found here.

I attached a little conversation bubble to the back with her little Valentine's Day message.

 Here is the candy bouquet I made for my hubby.  He is a self proclaimed sugar-chocaholic.  So, I thought that would be perfect for the man I love.  To go with the bouquet I created a candy bar letter that went a little like this:  "I have Good & Plenty Riesen's why I love you.  It's not just because you are one Hot Tamale.  We have 4 little Runts together...."  You get the idea. It was really fun creating and my husband loved it!  Now he has a year supply of candy just sitting on his desk.

 My husband sensing my stress over the past couple of weeks got me a massage and facial at our local spa.  He is quite a catch I tell ya--he knew just what I needed!

I hope you all had a wonderful Valentine's Day full of love! 


Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Spicy Hot Chocolate Saves the Day!!!

Since the first of the year, my husband and I have totally changed everything about how we eat.  It is a vegan-style eating plan, that also cuts out wheat and sugar.  We eat lots of vegetables, fruits and beans, and only about a cup of rice or quinoa a day.  Mike, of course, has already lost 20 pounds, and has no plans to ever eat another way.  In fact he wants me to make him a lentil cake for his birthday next week!  For me, though, the hardest part has been not having my daily chocolate fix.  Chocolate is medicine for me, and I realized, after a month without it, that I don't think I can manage my life, and still be happy, unless I can find a way to eat it in moderation. 

Well, yesterday, after browsing the aisles at our local discount grocery store, I spied a can of Dagoba sipping chocolate.  Although I had never tried it, I knew it had to be good, because Dagoba makes the yummiest of chocolate bars.  Even better, this sipping chocolate was flavored with chili and cinnamon -- my favorite!  I snatched up a container, and came home and made a cup.  I don't know if it is because I had been abstaining for a month, but this stuff is AMAZING!!!  I don't think I can afford to spend the $12 retail price on a regular basis, so I figured I better come up with a copycat recipe.

If you don't like a little spice in your life, this recipe is not for you.  Don't even bother!  But if you, like me, think sriracha is the condiment of the Gods, get disappointed when the salsa is too mild, or have ever added red pepper flakes to your slice of pizza, I promise you will be very, very happy with this recipe.

The cast of characters:  Unsweetened cocoa powder -- go for the nice stuff, it is the base flavor of this drink, semi-sweet or bittersweet chocolate chips, honey or brown sugar, cinnamon and cayenne pepper.  A word on cayenne...every packet of dried spice is going to rate differently on the spicy scale -- you never know until you try it -- so start with less, because you can always add more.

The addition of the chocolate chips is what turns this cocoa into something amazing.  Along with the kick of the cayenne, it has a very silky-smooth, luxurious texture.

"When we're together, even the coldest day feels warm."  Kind of romantic, huh?  For some reason spicy hot chocolate seems a lot sexier than the regular stuff!

Spicy Hot Chocolate
1 cup milk, or milk alternative
1 T. brown sugar or 2 tsp. honey
2 T. unsweetened cocoa powder
2 T. semi-sweet chocolate chips
1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/16-1/8 tsp. cayenne pepper 

Heat milk on the stove, along with one tablespoon of brown sugar or two teaspoons of honey, until it start to steam and is very, very hot.  Meanwhile, in a small bowl, assemble your dry ingredients.  When the milk is barely simmering, dump in the cocoa mix, and whisk until all is incorporated and the chocolate is melted, at least one minute.


Monday, January 30, 2012

Twisty "Lollipop" Flower

 I have made many many many headbands.  This is one of my girls favorites.  They call them lollipop flowers. They add such a fun pop of color to any outfit.  I thought I would show you how to make them today.

 Supplies:  Strip of fabric-mine was 1/2 an inch, felt, glue, and scissors.


First you want to make a knot at the end of your strip of fabric.  You can make it as thick or thin as you want.  The thicker the strip of fabric the fuller your flower will look.  Next hot glue the know to the center of your felt circle.  Next you will want to twist your fabric like shown above.  Twist around the center knot adding a drop of glue to secure the fabric.

 Continue twisting and winding the strip of fabric until you reach the desired size for your your flower.  Make sure the end is glued securely to the felt.  Then trim off any excess felt so that there isn't any felt exposed.
Then hot glue it to a headband, clip, elastic like demonstrated on Amy's previous post.  You could even use these on a broach or pin. 
Aren't these cute?

I made this one out of tulle to match my daughter's Sunday dress.  I would recommend experimenting with different textures and types of fabric.   You might be surprised how beautiful they turn out.


Friday, January 27, 2012

Friday Flower

There are a million and one flower tutorials out there, but I want to share this one with you, because I have never seen it anywhere.  It is one that will stand out in the crowd.  I came up with it one night, after I cut off all my hair. I wanted a flower that would lay flat against my head if I wore it on a headband.  I love that there is no sewing involved.  

All you need is some felt (wool felt is my favorite, but I've said that before), scissors and a glue gun.

 Cut out one circle, about three or four inches wide (depending on how big you want your flower), and a strip of fabric that is about 2 feet long and two to three inches wide.

Using your glue gun, fold the strip in half, gluing along the entire end.

Use your scissors and cut a fringe on the strip, cutting every 1/4 inch or so.  Be careful not to cut all the way through (seems like I always end up doing that).

Glue the fringe all the way around the edge of the circle, trimming the fringe when it meets the other end.

Glue another section of fringe on the inside of the circle.

Glue another section inside that circle.  You can do one more row, or add your center at this point.

Cut a spiral out of the a smaller circle (about 2 inches across), and use the tutorial found in this post to make a rosette.

Glue the rosette into the center of the flower.

Cut another circle from the felt, roughly the same size as the circle on the back of the flower.  Cut two small slits in it, about 3/4 inch apart.

Glue it onto the back of the flower, only putting glue around the edge of the circle.  This will allow you to attach your flower to a clip, headband or pin.  You can slip whatever you want through the notches.

My favorite is a headband.  With my hair so short, a clip doesn't really stay in place.

Have I mentioned that mustard yellow is my favorite color right now?  I'd wear it every day if I could.