DIY Avocado-Honey Moisturizing Pre-Poo

Good Rainy Tuesday if you’re in the Northeast this morning!

I’m thinking swimming lessons at the outdoor pool will be a no-go today.

But that’s not what this is really about.  Let me get back on track.

A couple of years ago, when my kids were a year and three years old, I was dealing with lots of stress.  Staying home with two whiny (I mean, wonderful!) toddlers with postpartum anxiety issues left me slightly unstable.

One night, during that difficult time, I went to the bathroom and did a quick turn to view the back of my previously luxurious bottom-of-shoulder-blade length cascading ringlets.  I was mortified.  I hadn’t been taking care of myself, and it showed.   Oh, my stars, did it show!

Now, it’s been years since I adopted the motto “business in the front, party in the back.”  To me, as it pertains to hair, that always meant that if the front of my hair was presentable, I was all good.  I can’t see the back of my head anyway, so why sweat the small stuff.

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Dude, That’s Awesome Coleslaw

Good morning!

Yes, I know.  The name of this coleslaw.  I give full credit to Mr. SewOldSchool who believes in the philosophy that if something is named aptly, anyone will be willing to try it — and thus reap the benefits of its culinary splendor.

I’ve had a love affair with coleslaw since the beginning of time.  I remember back in the day when we’d be traveling cross-country in our jalopy Concorde RV with us kids, the ‘rents, and two or three Shih Tzus running loose as we drove down the Interstate.  Good memories!

Inevitably, we’d break down and get to order some take-out while my dad fixed whatever was ailing Ol’ Concordia.  When this would happen, my favorite spot was KFC.  I know, I know.   I didn’t know or care to know much about nutrition as an elementary-aged kid.  I cared about what tasted good.

Little Bro liked the biscuits and the chicken.

I honestly don’t remember what Little Sis preferred.

Me, I was all about the coleslaw.  KFC was putting out some really tasty ‘slaw in the ’80s!

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Say No, Thank You, to Cavities With Homemade, Two-Ingredient Toothpaste!

The title says it all!  I haven’t used any other toothpaste besides this homemade version I’m sharing with you in over five years.  (That’s around the time Matt and I decided we were ready to start a family.   I wanted to have a clean and healthy body, so the search for all things natural began then and there. That’s why many of the posts I write about have that magic number in the timeline somewhere, in case anybody is wondering what the heck is so magical about “five or so years ago”! Ha, ha!.)

I guess that cavity bit in the title may be an exaggeration, as I did have my first cavity last year.  But I’m an old lady, so it was probably bound to happen at some time or another anyway – regardless of what toothpaste I was using.

I’m telling you, though, even when I go on vacation, I make myself a little bit of this stuff just to get me by.  Fluoride just isn’t my thing, I guess you could say.  I like to keep things simple and as chemical-free as possible.   I also really like being able to replenish supply without running to the store. And you know by now that if there’s a way I can make it, I’m all over that, too!

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The Best Ashy-Skin Bath Soak is Probably Hiding in Your Kitchen Right Now!

I know this is insane, but I kind of feel like we are still struggling to get back to a sense of normal after the holidays.  I know, I know, you’re thinking we’re in mid-to-late January now and what the heck is wrong with me.

Well, I’ve been in a cloud of transferring my scratch notes to computerized sewing files, teaching myself to quilt, secretly searching online for another treadle for who knows what reason (hopefully Matt won’t read this!), chasing after my two crazy kiddos, and kind of, sort of catching up on Parenthood episodes (the only show I watch)!

But, I guess, in short, the holidays are just a whirlwind that takes weeks to recover from around here!  And in my defense, lots of people do still have those inflatable Christmas lawn decorations still up and we’re approaching Valentine’s Day now.  I think we should focus on what’s wrong with them… Continue reading

Are-You-Kidding-Me? Pesto

I hope everyone had a great holiday with lots of good eating, drinking, and family time!  We had a great time hosting Christmas dinner this year!  I am surprised at how busy I have been this past week, but I guess that’s just my nature coupled with all the festivities this time of year.

I have a new quilt (my second ever) that I’m working on sewing-wise, a homemade dinosaur sleigh bed that my husband and I are working on craft-wise, and a notepad sitting next to my computer full of notes of topics I want/need to write posts about.  I keep telling myself in due time all will come together, and I really do believe it will.

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Slow Cooker Squash Soup

This is a recipe that I actually wrote down! I’m impressed with myself that I wrote it down and a dated it, too.  It’s from 2010, before I had kids with allergies in the house.  That being said, it’s not dairy-free, but could probably be adapted pretty easily.  I used to adore this soup and will have to make it again now that it’s found it’s way back to me!

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Shepherd’s Pie, Turkey Style

Traditional Shepherd’s Pie has been one of my favorite dishes for a long time.  A few months ago when I found out I had a sensitivity to beef, among many other things, I thought of how hard it would be for me to eat “normal.”

Luckily, everything is adaptable.   And this looks and tastes pretty “normal” to me:

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Straightforward Nut Milk (Walnut, Pecan, Hemp, Almond, etc.)

If you or anyone you know suffers from allergies or food intolerance, you know how challenging it can be to come up with alternatives that are just as tasty as the real thing.  In our household, we have three dairy-allergic family members — myself and the kids.  I remember the stress of trying to come up with alternatives for my kids in every dining situation.  Milk is a hard thing to just not use completely. This is a very important, versatile element in the kitchen of a home with anyone who has a dairy allergy.

Before I smartened up to all the preservatives in “healthy-for-you” packaged almondmilk, I was buying it weekly in a three-pack case from my local warehouse store!  Yikes!  (Sorry, kids! I didn’t know any better!)  Good thing I like to experiment in the kitchen!

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The Goodie Green Shake (with banana, pineapple, greens, and more!)

Let’s wake up with a tasty, healthy, no-added-sugar, good-for-you shake this morning!  I just threw this together for my family and got rave reviews from all. It’s quick to make and tastes great — all things we love in a recipe.

Don’t let this color fool you.   This is delicious!

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Super-Bomb Turkey Tacos

Good Friday Morning!

Here we go with another recipe.  First things first.  I want to say that I was urged by my husband to give this recipe this name.  He ate six of these for dinner and made himself sick.  My 23-pound two-year-old ate nearly three!  Continue reading

Chiara’s Mashies (The Perfect Accomplice To My Sneaky Meatloaf!)

As promised, here’s the recipe for my totally sneaky and tasty mashed potatoes.   I know mashed potatoes are easy, but these are delicious w/ the meatloaf I posted a couple days ago — or by themselves — and I want to make sure I can make them just like I did a few nights ago, again!

When my kids are getting ridiculous w/ their veggie-consumption refusal, this is my go-to!

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Sneaky Meatloaf

I know, I know, another recipe.  Sorry!  But this is actually great for me, too, because I can actually look this up and make the exact dish again if I want to.  This pleases my husband, because I literally am never able to make the same thing twice! Ha!

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Trick or Treat? Brussels and Beets!

Happy Thursday!

When I originally decided to start blogging, I never intended to add recipes to my collection of topics.  But last night I made a meatless chili for dinner in the slow-cooker (off the top of my head) that had my husband going back for third and fourth bowls.

My cooking is much like my sewing – I do what I feel like doing in that moment and get a slightly different result every single time I make something.  I like it that way.  It’s always an experiment in my kitchen, and you never know exactly what you’re going to get.

So my husband and I moved in together in 1999, and I’ve been cooking for him daily ever since.  There’s been a few occasions over the last 15, almost 16 years that he just plain didn’t like what I made; but, come on now, you can’t please everybody all the time!

Anyway, over dinner, he convinced me that I should be adding everything to the blog, including, and most importantly, recipes; because I am an experienced, non-trained professional of the culinary arts and cooking is something I do at least three times a day! I’m half-kidding here.   It is what he said, but he was probably halfway making fun of me.

Matt and the kids like my food, so that’s good enough for me.  But you might like this, too; so I think I’ll share.

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Non-Dairy Ice Cream and Princess Knee for the Sick Child

Good Wednesday afternoon!

I am on my A-game today as my already moody four-year-old has come down w/ a cold suddenly.  Some people are sweet when they are sick; she isn’t.  I’m her mother, so I can be honest about it!  I really have to use my imagination and creativity to entertain this under-the-weather little royal.

What can elevate a kid’s mood like ice cream?  Absolutely nothing!  But we have quite the collection of food allergies in our household, so the ice cream’s got to be crafty, just like everything else around here.  It’s got to be dairy-free, peanut-free, soy-free, gluten-free, egg-free, and, of course, flavorful and healthy, too.    What a list to fulfill!  Good thing I like a challenge!

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