a hard egg to crack

>> 5.20.2010

one more vinegar tip you may not know is this. to prevent cracked hard boiled eggs, add two tablespoons of white vinegar per quart of water before boiling to prevent the eggs from cracking. the egg shells will also peel off faster and easier.


vinegar, more than just salad dressing

>> 5.19.2010

this inexpensive kitchen staple can multitask in any room of the house. here are a couple of my favorite eco friendly ways to use it.

- clean your steam iron
fill the water tank with white vinegar. turn the iron to the steam setting +  a soft towel. repeat the process with water, then thoroughly rinse out the inside of your iron.

- clean your coffee maker
once a month fill the reservoir with half white vinegar + halftap water. run through the brew cycle then rinse thoroughly with two cycles of cold water.


free jam labels

>> 5.18.2010

aren't these the cutest!
grab them for yourself at domestifluff


no pectin strawberry jam

>> 5.17.2010

i am so excited that strawberry picking season is early this year. i just took my jars out of the cannner + am anxiously awaiting a little homemade strawberry jam on my toast!

here is my recipe for no pectin strawberry jam:
2 qts crushed strawberries 
4 c sugar
4 T lemon juice
1 T butter {optional but prevents skim from forming}

sort and wash the strawberries; remove any stems and caps. crush the berries {i use my food processor}. add crushed strawberries to large pot. add sugar and stir well. boil rapidly, stirring constantly, until the mixture reaches 220° - 222° F. remove from heat + skim. fill and process jars for 5 minutes. the finished product will be slightly thinner than pectin added strawberry jam. makes about four, 8 oz jars.

note: my cost per jar was just $1.75 -comparably it is $5 + up at the grocery for all natural jam.


thrift store gem

>> 5.14.2010

look what i found... a great $1.50 chair at the thrift store that was just begging for a re-do. i took it completely apart, recovered the seat + back cushion then painted the frame a bright white. i am loving my new front porch chair!

note: i removed all of the rust from the screws, bolts + tacks by soaking them in a super strong glass of tea them wiping them down with steel wool. worked like a charm.


clean + fresh smelling carpets

>> 5.13.2010

after a day of open windows, my carpets are still a bit musty smelling. so today i am using baking soda to tackle the problem. baking soda absorbs + neutralizes odors.

here's how to make it work for you...
liberally sprinkle baking soda on the carpet + let set overnight {or as long as possible because the longer it sets the better it works}. sweep up the larger amounts then vacuum up the rest.


fresh air

>> 5.12.2010

my favorite natural air deodorizer is an open window! clean air will rid your house of pollutants. homemade cleaning products are best but no matter which products you choose, i always make sure my windows are open.


soapwort laundry soap

>> 5.11.2010

soapwort comes from nature + can be returned to nature when you are done with it {think: compost bin}. it has no harsh chemicals nor environmentally destructive additives. plus, it is also very easy to grow!

soapwort soap:
2 c distilled water
2 tsp dried soapwort {available in most health food store or grow your our with soapwort seeds}
4 drops lavender oil extract

bring water to a boil; cover and simmer 20 minutes. remove from heat, add soapwort + mix. let cool, then add in remaining ingredients. bottle and store. use 1-2 oz per load in place of laundry detergent. and yes, it really does produce bubbles!


non toxic dryer sheets

>> 5.10.2010

it is officially spring cleaning week in my house. lots of winter quilts to wash + store. this is how i keep them soft + static free...

instead of adding potentially toxic commercial dryer sheets, i use aluminum foil balls in the dryer {two balls tightly rolled approximately 2-3" in diameter}. I also add 1 cup of vinegar in my rinse cycle.


mother's day roses

>> 5.07.2010

every girl loves roses, right? well how about a rose bouquet that serves an additional purpose. these are usually featured at baby showers but switching infant washcloths out for full size ones is just as easy + pretty. if you can fold, you can make washcloth roses. be sure to check out this video tutorial.

happy mother's day ladies!


crafting with nature

>> 5.06.2010

this is not my original idea but i think it is so clever! what a great way to bring the outside into your kitchen. looks simple enough to make: find a small stump, drill 1/2' holes on top + add a piece of felt on the bottom to make it scratch resistant.


plátano frito {mexican chips}

>> 5.05.2010

happy cinco de mayo! today it is time to celebrate + cook up one of my favorites, plátano frito or fried plantains. plantains look like bananas but when cooked, are treated in much the same way as potatoes because they have a similar flavor and texture.

here's my recipe...
peel plantains and slice as thin as possible. fry in hot oil until golden brown. drain on paper towels + salt to taste. serve warm + enjoy!


container gardening :: potatoes update

>> 5.04.2010

here i am nearly six weeks later + my 'potatoes in a bucket' are growing like wildfire. if you are keeping up with my container gardening journal, check out how i started. or if you are also growing along with me, it may be time to add a bit more dirt.


may calendar

>> 5.03.2010

today i created may's calendar.
you can download it here...

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