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Kefir – My thoughts

April 2, 2013

Kefir (pronounced /kəˈfɪər/ kə-feer[1)

I’ve been using kefir for about 10 years. I discovered it at the time I was

imagesinvestigating various causes for my ‘fibromyalgia’ and kefir was recommended for all sorts of diets. I now know all of those issues were  Celiac Disease. 

This site has the best information on kefir IMHO

The basics are:  Kefir are these are little ‘grains’ that feel kind of like jello, look kind of like a crystalline brain. When put in various different liquids, they eat the sugar or lactose in the liquid and ferment whatever it is you put them in. When they ferment, they make a LOT of probiotics. Something like 39 more beneficial probiotics than what you find in yogurt. Cooking kills off a lot of them, but the taste is really good in a lot of various foods.

Milk is most commonly used in kefir, water 2nd. If you make milk kefir, it’s something like a cross between yogurt and buttermilk, the longer it ferments, the more sour it gets. Milk kefir will also continue to make more kefir at a slow rate. They do not reproduce in anything but mammal milk. You don’t really need much more than a tablespoon to ferment a quart of liquid in one day. So any extras you have you can convert to water/juice grains. And any extra’s beyond that you can pass on to others.

My usual mode with kefir is to put the TB of kefir grains in a quart of whole milk,
wait about 12 to 24 hours depending on the heat in the house. (I’m in the South) Wait just until it was thick, like a smoothie, and then pour off the kefir milk and make actual smoothies or just drink it straight, depending on my mood.
I’ve tried water kefir and didn’t much like it. But I modified that and
simmered coconut flakes in water and then used that to ferment with the
kefir grains and simply love that. I saw a post (I think it was on this
list) about making ‘soda’ with kefir, and tried that with the coconut
water kefir and it’s even more delicious. I tried it with regular coconut water (no sugar added) and it wasn’t so great. My theory is the kefir needs the sugar to ferment. The taste is off without sugar for the kefir to ‘eat’. I’ve also made blueberry soda after slightly crushing some blueberries, adding water and kefir grains. Very very good!
You can also use kefir to make soft cheese, cottage cheese, sauerkraut,
kim-chee, and lots of other stuff. It’s very very handy stuff. You can see the link above for recipes, or google it! (ha!)

I’m a fan, can you tell? LOL. My kids don’t like milk kefir, but if
I catch it early enough so that it’s not very sour, I add clear gelatin to about a
TB of warm water, and chunked up fruit, they think it’s mom’s homemade
yogurt and everyone’s happy!!

To get kefir grains

you can ask people for grains on here

Or you can buy kefir grains here



Today’s post brought to you by Lettuce and Turquoise

March 8, 2013

ImageI spent a lot of yesterday cleaning up my front yard and moving all my potting/gardening things to one area. We live in a mobile home and we are moving it in a few months to 4 acres, so I can’t garden in the ground unless I want to dig up all my hard work in June and hope it survives! So yesterday I set up a wooden box, mixed good dirt from a few different areas, and put a piece of old window on top. Today, I’m going to give it a few hours, really wait until the sun warms up, then I’m planting lettuce seeds. I can’t wait for baby lettuce, my 5 yo is going to get such a kick out of picking her own salad.


Also, in today’s plan. Getting out the turquoise paint, painting the inside of my built in spice racks and the ‘moulding’ underneath my cupboards in the kitchen. I’m hoping to eventually have a red and turquoise kitchen! 




link – DIY a Year of Laundry Soap bonus DIY Fabric Softener

March 8, 2013


It’s that time of year again, when many of us get income tax refunds. Listening to a show on NPR a week or so ago, they were talking about how most of the working poor who get refunds, use them on things to improve their quality of life. New furniture, new appliances, new cars. I won’t lie, I’ve used it for all of those things over the years LOL. But the past few years the refund has gone towards improving our quality of life in other ways. Buying food stores so the expensive, hard to find items are around the house for months, and stocking up on stuff like toothpaste, shampoo, toilet paper etc.  I can’t be the only one who hates to reach for another roll of tp and realize there aren’t anymore. Plus I loathe stores. Internet shopping is so much better in my book. So all of that to say that I spend money on items that we need, and items that it’d be SO convenient for me to not have to run to the store weekly to replace. Then I saw this link for a YEARS worth of laundry soap. Oh yes please, I’m mixing this puppy up this weekend!

And for your soft clothes enjoyment, especially when hanging out on a line, try the homemade fabric softener recipe!

If you are getting a refund back, what are you doing with it. Is it like NPR says, you are spending the money not on luxury items and throw away items like eating out and movie theaters, but on life improvement?

Toddler Booster Seat Cover Meta Post

February 21, 2011

So, I went this morning to clean out my husbands work car (he’s an animal – just thought I’d insert that bit) and realized that somewhere along the way, the cover for my daughters booster seat has gone missing.  I could just go spend the extra dollars and buy her a new booster, but my frugal heart cries at the thought of that. So of COURSE I’m going to go google it. Right?

I figured I’d share the wealth with you. And hopefully, eventually, post my tutorial of the re-d0 since unlike these other ladies, I’m having to create my own pattern as I have no unlikeable, hideously ugly previous pad covered in the detrius of a toddlers life to use for a pattern. Plus I have found exactly ONE PDF (no longer available – thank you!) for my particular booster seat. Seems everyone has the Cosco’s, and I have the Graco Turbo Booster!


Free Tutorials – heavy on the pictures

PDF patterns you pay for


Kitchen Booster Seats



You The Readers

February 12, 2011

Oddly enough – I’m getting an average of about 50 hits a day. Most of these seem to be on certain posts!

Specifically these (in order)

T-shirt Upcycling Meta Post

Want Your Bad Romance – Creepy Love Songs

Potter Puppet Pals Cake

May is National Celiac Awareness Month

Gluten Free Mad Hatter Layer Sculpted Cake

Pocket Diaper Tutorial


As you can see, that’s quite a range of interests! Now that I have my craft room back, and a kitchen that is quite large, PLUS I’m not packing stuff 24/7 or feeling guilty that I’m NOT packing I can start crafting in the kitchen and craft room again! Wonder what I’ll produce next?

And Back Again for Valentines Day

February 12, 2011

Picture and Makeup by my 16yo

Here’s the link to her deviantart page

Things have changed greatly in my life since I started this blog.

I no longer live in the house I own, I’m renting it out and living in a completely different state now. Because of where we live. I no longer have chickens. I may or may not be able to have a garden. Composting would just be silly – there are so many feral pets around here it’d be a study in frustration to try. I can’t burn my burnables due to HOA restrictions in our area, and put the ash on my garden like I would normally. So between the burnables and compostables, my garbage output has doubled. Which makes me feel sad and guilty. Which I of course dislike intensely. I also left EVERY SINGLE PLANT I owned behind. I want to weep when I think about it. I’m fully planning on going back and getting them. But meanwhile I have one plant my darling husband bought me, knowing how sad I was, and 2 Boston Ferns I found growing under our house of all things! If you know me, you’ll know that the lack of plants, planning a garden, and simply having a garden and the joyous monotony of watering plants everyday is like having a garden shaped hole in my heart. It hurts and I truly feel the lack.

In the Good News. The house we are living in has four awesomely huge bedrooms, a giant open floor plan for the living room/dining room. I’ve got a lovely space to craft, with enough room for hubby and his craft stuff too! Our bathroom has a giant tub that the whole family has enjoyed taking a bath in at one time or another. We’ve got 2 very nice families that live nearby that we enjoy hanging out with. Our backyard is fenced in, so our Big Dog can’t escape to wander the neighborhood as is her wont. The school district that the kids are in (I’m no longer homeschooling the middle child) is a 9 on the Great Schools scale – pretty freaking fabulous. My youngest’s class size is 18. My oldest has some classes in which there are only 9 people and can take such electives as forensic anthropology with actual dissection going on in class! Also fashion, in which she is learning how to sew – thank goodness! – but doesn’t have to learn from me! (and I don’t have to teach her, another study in frustration) She’s very very excited to be able to start sewing all the designs she’s got in her head – especially all the cosplay she wants! The kids really really enjoy school – which is a huge relief from our old house where the middle cried and hated school with a burning loathing passion and I hated subjecting him to those feelings, so homeschooled him. We’ve also got riding lessons, 2 skating rinks, 2 bowling rinks, lots of shopping, a hobby lobby 5 minutes away, ceramics, musics and art lessons. All within 20 minutes. But all the joy of rural living! So I’m really enjoying the area. Just not the actual property my now-house is situated on.

Today we are creating Valentines for my 5th and 3rd graders class. And Valentines for my 3yo and 16yo’s friends. We are also going to be making gluten free marshmallow rice treats with cocoa crispies and drizzled with white chocolate after being cut into a heart shape we may also insert them into lollipop sticks. Depends on how monstrously hungry for treats we are feeling LOL. (check out HERE for a link to a recipe and great pictures on preparing the snack)

Now for pictures of the cutey Valentines! ~ Warning ~ These are NOT ours. These are photos from Google with the keywords ‘handmade Valentine’ I’ll post pictures of ones actually made by Kids later today…

Craft Room Envy

June 16, 2010

Currently. I do not have a craft room.

I’ve had one a couple of times in my life. The first was just trash. Yes, I had a room. But really, it was more of a place for my stuff to be out of sight. No organization, no decor, no pretty. No creative impulses because it was UGLY.

My second room, I only had for a few months. I accomplished SO much in there though. The room was well laid out, I had a cutting table, I could see my fabrics and other creative inspiring things. But…. then I acquired a husband and 2 more daughters and my craft room is now a super girly pink/purple bedroom LOL.

My honey and I have been talking about decorating, what we’d build a house to be like if we won the lottery, and more earthbound ideas. Like turning our carport into a 5th bedroom, with a huge closet and bathroom. Which would maybe make enough room for a craft room for me! Either way. I’m going to keep checking out craft rooms. I’m going to keep droooooooling and wishing until I too, can attain such wonderous-ness as is my own personal, designed by me, place to create. And of course, I’m going to keep pictures, links and draw designs for my own space, nevermind I don’t even know the SIZE or SHAPE of the mythical place. A woman can dream right??

And now, start your drool…

This first room is brought to you by Allsorts.  Her gorgeous turquoise and red craftroom is bigger than my living room. So my jealousy knows no bounds!

If you’d like to see MORE of her extremely creative inspiring space, click the 2nd link.

And the Second Craft Room by Gypsy Intent, her (presumed) etsy shop is Here:

and Gypsy Intents Photo Stream on Flikr is here

And now for Heather Bailey!

Odd how I keep picking rooms with the color turquoise in it! Hopefully I’m picking for cool ideas and design rather than just color!

If you’d like to see the pictures larger, click the link above and it will take you to her blog about her craftroom. Clickable pictures and all!

And now for Wrens Nest Cottage.

You can see the rest of her craft room pictures (and bigger with more detail) here

And now we have Saucy Sprinkles.  It amuses me how she talks about herself in the 3rd person.

I love the details of how people store their things! These are some pretty sweet details too! A lot of these things I think I can pick up at my local Dollar Tree and they’d help Immensely with my organization problems!

And here we have Soule Mama.  Her space is probably most like what mine will be. Bright and full of lovely sunlight, cluttered, full of various kinds of inspiration, from vintage suitcases to pictures of loved ones.

Lastly we have Tofu Studio!

And again with the bright bright light and turquoise pops of color… Love those curtains too!


And here’s bits and bobs from all over google that I forgot to put the credit in the pictures when I saved them. If these belong to you or you recognize them, could you let me know in comments and I’ll promptly fix them!