Day Four: To Be Frugal, Healthy, or Happy…

A.K.A.: Making Donuts, Buying Donuts, and Skipping the Donuts

I mentioned that I am an optimist.  But I am also a realist.  Sometimes these two parts of me have to have a conversation together.  It goes something like this:

OPTIMIST: No problem with these food allergies… I’ll just make donuts for the brunch on Sunday!

(My version of a donut recipe I found here.)

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31 Days to Less Stress in Allergy-Free Eating- Day 1


Well, I can’t believe October is already here, but here its, and time for 31 Days of Change!  As I mentioned before, although I am very far from being a food-blogger, I just could not get away from the idea of blogging for 31 days about how I deal with eating and multiply food allergies.  Then, recently  I had a request (not the first!) to help someone’s friend who found out they needed to be gluten-free, and they were overwhelmed.  I have reinvented the wheel many times in helping others, so here is a chance for me to compile it all in one place, and be motivated to do it by joining this blog-challenge!  (I do well with external motivations) 😉

So, here we go!

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SOAP Success!!

soap on cloth

So, I finally got to use my SOAP!! Now that I know it cured safely, I can send it off to my family (continuation of Christmas gifts!) 😉

I tested it in the shower tonight, in different uses, that I normally use soap for.

First, we use ivory in the shower.  This is also all I ever use to wash my face.  (Then I moisturize with my homemade lotion! I used to use Burt’s Bees milk and honey lotion.

Test #1: Facial cleanser.

I LOVED this soap on my face!!! My face felt so clean, but NOT dried out! When I wash my face with ivory, my face usually feels like it’s going to crack as the water dries off, at this time of year.  My face was already smooth, yet clean of all oily-dirt, after washing with this soap.  I need less lotion on my face afterward!

Test #2: Lathering on bare skin.

Made a decent lather, not bubbly like shower gel or anything, but comparable to general soap.  Again, it was so much less drying on my skin!

Test #3: Lathering on a loufa sponge.

Woohoo! Great lather that time.  I think the bar is a little hard (which I was hoping for when I chose my oils, as it will not disintegrate so fast in the dish).

Test #4: Shaving my legs.

Oh my! I usually shave with just soap, or sometimes an old conditioner I don’t like, and need to use up.  Shaving with this soap was easy, as it was a nice moisturizing light lather.  I take a VERY hot shower (I know… you’re not supposed to!), and often am so incredibly dried out after using soap.  And while at this time of year, I still need a little lotion afterward, I bet come summer I won’t need any after shaving!

I call this soap “unscented vanilla bean,” because I used old vanilla beans that didn’t have much scent left;  I hated to throw them away, and I thought it would at least look visually interesting!  I did us cocoa butter in it, but there are also other oils, and it just smells kind of generic and oil smelling.  Since I have reactionary skin, I thought I’d go for plain first off, to be safe.  Now that I have this soap on hand, I can try a scented one.  I think I’ll try a fruity one!

So thrilled with my first try at soap!  Now this weekend I will make a scented batch! 🙂


Here a lip balm.. there a lip balm… everywhere a …

Cocoa-Mint Lip Balm

Cocoa-Mint Lip Balm

My first attempt at lip balm was in December.  I was inspired by my friend Renee, and her wonderful blog, FIMBY.  And I thought it would make a nice original homemade Christmas gift for family.

Then some friends wanted some, and I thought I should make labels to stick on the tins, so they would know what was inside!

Tins with STICKERS

Tins with STICKERS

The second recipe I adapted myself, using cocoa-butter instead of coconut oil.  It ended up being a firmer lip balm, and I thought would lend itself better to sticks, than tins.  My testers agreed!

My first STICKS

My first STICKS

Well, as it goes with Facebook… soon MORE people wanted to try my lipbalm!  And it seemed like a fun way to earn a little extra money for our next trip to visit our Haitian boys, coming up in April.

(L) Cocoa-Mint (C) Orange (R) Peppermint

(L) Cocoa-Mint (C) Orange (R) Peppermint

And here we are, after a lipbalm making frenzy tonight!  A poll on Facebook has most people in favor of STICKS!  Also, as you can see by the photo, Cocoa-Mint is also the most popular flavor!  I wanted to try a berry flavor, but could not get an oil for that locally, so had to settle for orange- which, by the way, goes well with the coconut oil, for a lovely tropical scent!

So, while I am not looking to go into business (at THIS point anyway!), I am happy to share with you the lip-balm I have been having so much fun making!  If you would like to make a donation to our next trip to Haiti, the sticks are $2 and the tins are $3*.

I am still pricing the shipping, but if you know of someone who would like some locally homemade lip-balm, as a thank you for supporting our cause, send them our way! 🙂

waitin to come home...

waiting to come home...

*”Suggested Donation” technically, as I am NOT a business!  🙂

(I will also tell you that I cleaned my kitchen very well, and washed everything between batches, and scrubbed my hands any time I needed to touch anything else- but I am not making these in a “certified kitchen” at this point.  Who knows… maybe our homeschooling family will have a side business some day, though!)