I want to be greener (Part 2)

So it’s been a long time since my first of these posts. (Part 1)

But, I want to keep them going..

The first post I made laundry detergent.  I’ve been making that detergent since 2011. That means I like it right? :)

Recently a friend came over & used my washer bringing her own detergent.  A typical store bought one.. maybe Tide or something.  She washed a few pieces of my clothing & oh my gosh.. the smell.  That ‘laundry smell’ that people love smells like chemicals to me now.  You don’t get much of a smell at all with the homemade kind but you definitely get used to it.

Since the laundry detergent I made Homemade Body Scrubs for holiday presents that I should’ve added to this series.  This past December I made lip balm, body butter & cocktail bitters that I’ll try and work in to their own post.

I have a couple other things in the works for trying to leave less of a blueprint on this world.

PAPER TOWELS

For years, we bought paper towels in bulk from Costco.  I am horrible at using napkins/paper towels.  I use too many of them all the time.

I decided enough was enough and stopped buying them.  We now have hand/kitchen towels we use instead.  It hasn’t been easy.  A paper product seems to make so much more sense and I question using a towel.  But, really it does the same thing.  I may use a towel only once depending on what I’m using it for, but that’s ok.  They get thrown in the garage for the next cycle of wash we do.

Since making the body products I mentioned above and diving deeper into yoga, I’ve found a new love for essential oils.  Essential oils are naturally occurring in plants and are found to have therapeutic & medicinal benefits for humans.  I’ve mostly seen the therapeutic side to them but I don’t doubt they can work medicinally as well.

How do you feel when you smell citrus or peppermint.   Lemon, orange, grapefruit are all forms or citrus, but for me, citrus and peppermint are uplifting or energizing.  Makes sense when you think about drinking orange or grapefruit juice in the morning.  Now, how does Lavender make you feel?  Lavender is great calming/relaxing scent.

Lavender, lemon & peppermint are three basic scents used most often.  I used lavender for my body scrub & body butter.  I used lavender, lemon & eucalyptus for lip balm.

Essential oils have made me want to experiment more with making my own products.

If you’d like to experiment yourself, here’s a great place to buy them: Click Here

HAND SOAP
recipe from Wellness Mama

We ran out of hand soap and I thought it would be easy to make my own.  Here’s what I combined.

2-3 Tablespoons pure castille soap (I used Dr. Bronners)
5-10 drops of essential oil of choice (I used lavender & lemon combination)
1/2 teaspoon sweet almond oil
water to fill soap dispenser (this will work for foaming dispenser as well)

Add water & oil, then add soap last.  So far this seems to be working great.  It’s thinner than typical hand soap but I’m ok with it.

Once my soap was out I re-used the same container. Easy peasy.

photo 2 (1)

FACIAL MIST

I love essential oil facial mists. They make me feel so fresh.  When you look at the ingredients, it’s really just water & essential oil.  I could make that!

Find a mini spray bottle to keep in your purse. I bought one for $2.50 at Jimbos.

Essential Oil Facial Mist
5-10 drops essential oil of choice
1 teaspoon sweet almond oil for dry skin
1 teaspoon witch hazel for oily skin
water

Add all ingredients to spray bottle adding water last.

Rose Water Facial Mist
Rose Water (I bought this one)
1 teaspoon sweet almond oil
water

Fill up spray bottle 1/3 full with rose water. Add oil & then fill remaining with water.

Spray before & after applying makeup and whenever you could use a little pick me up. :)

I’ve been carrying the Rose Water Spray in my purse for awhile & love it!

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ALL PURPOSE CLEANING SPRAY 
Recipe from Wellness Mama

1 teaspoon borax
1/2 teaspoon super washing soda
1 teaspoon pure castille soap
5-10 drops of essential oils
distilled or boiled water

Add all ingredients to a spray bottle, shake & use as desired.

Once again, re-purposed an old bottle!

photo 1 (1)

HOMEMADE DEODORANT
(Recipe source)

5-6 T coconut oil
1/8 cup arrowroot powder
1/8 cup cornstarch
1/4 cup baking soda
Essential Oil of your choice

Mix the powders together. Melt the coconut oil & slowly mix with the powders.

Coconut Oil hardens when it gets cold.  I made a batch, let it sit for a day and realized I needed more oil.  It still gets kind of hard when it’s cooler but if you rub it between your fingers it’ll warm right up.  I think you want it just beyond the powdery stage.  I think it’s best as a paste.

You have to apply this deodorant with your fingers.  I’ve been doing it for about 5 days now and it’s no big deal really.  So far it seems to work pretty good!

Reading some of the reviews on the original recipe page, some people had adverse reactions to the baking soda.  I noticed if I used a lot, it almost stung slightly.  If this happens, reduce the amount you use or decrease the amount of baking soda in the recipe.

photo 2

Hope you enjoy this as much as I do! Have a great weekend. :)

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Kimchi Miso Ramen

With a wedding coming up too quickly, money is tight.

One of Todd’s favorite foods is Ramen.  Any Asian noodles really, but Ramen especially.

We really enjoy going to ‘Convoy’ and picking from a wide variety of restaurants to get our noodle fix.  If you don’t know, Convoy is a street in SD filled with Asian restaurants and markets.  But with $$ on our mind, we can’t eat out as often as we’d like.

Top Ramen costs somewhere between 15-25 cents/packet.  Todd typically eats two at a time… so max of 50 cents.  Not the most healthy meal but economical that’s for sure.

I typically like to avoid those little packets of MSG that come along with the Ramen. Miso is great for you & a wonderful substitute.  Add some homemade kimchi and maybe some mushrooms, egg or tofu and you have a delicious meal.

MISO RAMEN

Ramen noodles (any style you’d like)

Water or broth

Miso paste

Boil water & cook noodles to your liking.  Add any veggies/proteins you’d like. Remove from heat & add miso paste to taste (~3 Tablespoons). There are many styles of Miso. The ligher in color, the lighter in taste.  Test them out and see what you like best.

For extra flavor, try squeezing some lime for tang, adding spice with sriracha and don’t forget the kimchi!

I LOVE Kimchi.  I’ve made it before, but didn’t post it on this little blog.  I’m going to share it now!  The recipe I used came from Food and Wine.  For all the wonderful health benefits of Kimchi, click here.

KIMCHI

What you need:

2 heads cabbage

1/2 lb daikon radish

1/2 small onion

1/4 cup sugar

10 garlic cloves

1 inch knob of ginger

2/3 cup of salt

3/4 cup gochugaru (Korean red pepper powder)

1 bunch scallions

Steps:

Cut the cabbage in quarters, and then in slices.  Put into two large bowls & cover each bowl with 1/3 cup salt.  Let sit for 45 minutes.  Mix cabbage and let sit for another 45 minutes.

Fill sink with cold water & wash salt off of cabbage.  It might take two times.  Drain & lightly pat cabbage with towel to dry.

In a magic bullet or some other blender, puree garlic, ginger, sugar & onion.  Add fish sauce and blend.

Chop daikon into matchsticks & scallions into 2 inch pieces.

Toss daikon and scallions with cabbage.  Add garlic mixture & red chili powder & mix well.

**I forgot this step & ended up adding the daikon later & just leaving out the scallions all together. Oops no biggie..**

Pack cabbage into 1 qt mason jars.  Cover cabbage with plastic wrap & put the caps on loosely to allow the air bubbles to escape.

Let stand at room temperature for 3 days until kimchi is bubbly.  Taste it, it should be tangy and delicious.  Store in the refrigerator for up to 6 months.

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Enjoy!!  Hope you’re having a great week! :)

 

 

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