I made it!: Test Human makes Magical Hand Salve (with super easy ingredients!)

Heya Cats and Kittens!

So, this seasonal changey grossness outside can be pretty rotten on our lovely skin. Or not so lovely skin. Or it can make it pretty crappy, really, is what I’m trying to nicely get across here. It stinks. Knuckles crack, cuticles look like saw-toothed dinosaurs, the backs of my hands belong to a 96 year old laundry lady.. things are a bit dry and gross.

My main concern, however, is that the Foxling has inherited my crappy skin- and so his darling little 5yo paws are just as cracked and sore as mine are- which is extra awful, because he has HIS WHOLE LIFE to make them start sucking.

So- TEST HUMAN TO THE RESCUE! Plus, obviously, internet searches, and the shared knowledge of some amazing crafty friends (Sarah E!)- I have made hand cream!

IMG_20170323_154601

You will need:

Shea butter (which comes in BRICKS or little tubs- who knew?)

Vitamin E oil

Jojoba oil (Jo-jo-bah? Sounds like a Jedi! Or.. is it “ho-ho-bah”? I’m not sure how to pronounce this…)

Grapeseed oil

Raw (unpasteurized) honey. (Preferably local, cos YUM! And also- because BEES.)

A glass measuring cup or mixing bowl that can go in the microwave

A microwave (although you could totally do this stove-top style, obviously. I am lazy. I did not.)

Measuring cups/spoons

Small containers, tins, something to put the cream in. This made 3 small tubs like the one in the picture above.

 

HOW TO DO THIS JAZZ:

1/4 cup Shea Butter, 1 tsp Vitamin E Oil, 1/8 cup Jojoba Oil, 1/8 cup Grapeseed oil- add all these things into your glass measuring cup, and microwave at 15 second intervals until you can stir it all together and not have any lingering lumps.

Now QUICKLY add in your honey- stir vigorously to get it all melted, and pour it into your containers. Don’t dawdle- this stuff sets surprisingly fast!

Pop on the lids, and put your containers in the fridge for about 30min.

TADAAA!!

Seriously. That’s it. It took, like, less than 5 minutes. The hardest part was..um.. nothing. This is not hard at all. And the cream is AMAZING! It melts into your skin with just the lightest of scents, and it soothes all those poor scratchy bits away. I like it so much, I’ve been using mine as face cream! HA!!! (I mean, I won’t in the summer, because I’ll melt away in a pile of oil. but for now? Golden!) I’ve also rubbed some into the dry tips of my very-processed hair.. hehehe. MULTITASKING!

If it gets warm, it DOES start to melt a bit, so you can keep it in the fridge if you want it more solid, or let it sit out for a softer cream/lotion.

 

ENJOY!!!

-m

 

*DO YOU make things? Products? Like what? Suggestions? Criticisms? Let me know!

I see the Light! DIY light changing

switchkitchHeya, Cats & Kittens!

So, as we settle in to the Magical Dream Farm, yet another project popped up- changing the kitchen lighting!

Dudes. I was NOT digging the weird frosted samurai looking monstrosity looming in the not-middle of the kitchen. We have a large kitchen island- which this eyesore was NOT centered over. At all. Or really near. Just kind of hanging out at an odd corner of the fridge..

Anyway! First, we thought we might do some sort of track lighting to bring the light over towards the island more… but THEN!

I was wandering through HomeSense with a friend, and they have LIGHTING THERE! did you know that? i MOST CERTAINLY did not! And they have some really cool stuff! Anyway, I found a pendant light that was really neat- the glass is kind of bubbly, and the cord is really long- I almost picked a more modern one with wood involved, but my friend has better taste than me, and pointed out that THIS one is much more unique and vintage-y looking- and she was totally right!

It pays to have smart friends.

I’d love to say the switch was a DIY of mine.. and i know that’s what it says in the heading.. but I’m actually going to call this what it is- a DIPW (Do it Please, WereHusband)! It’s not that i COULDN’T have done it- with supervison, as I have no idea how to do this.. but NOW i know! But- I am very short, and the WereHusband can reach the ceiling from the damn FLOOR- so he was the golden choice for this job. Anyway, TADAA!!! Because the cord is so long, we were able to keep the original mounting base (and not have to rewire stuff.. perhaps not the taste of everyone, but I don’t mind it!) and use a ceiling hook to stretch the light to hang nicely OVER the island (where it damn-well belongs!!). YAY!!!

newkitchlightclose

What do you think? Are you a fan of the black and frosted thingy, or the new look?

-M

Shelving DIY

Hiya, Cats & Kittens

So, now that we are happily ensconced in our Magical Dream Farm, we’ve started completing some of those random little projects that a new home always seems to bring.

I am a BIG FAN of Pyrex. I know it has some detractions- there is a distinct possibility that it may leach lead into food-but it is BEAUTIFUL, and I love it for display anyway.

In our old home, I had a GREAT set up of shelves to showcase my little collection- but with the Grand Relocation, I have no such thing. So I decided to put some up!

First, I had to FIND THE STUDS (heh!) using a Stud Finder. Studs are the long pieces of wood that run up a wall, so the other boards and drywall can screw into them. They are hard (heh, again!), and they are what you want to attach shelves and stuff to, so your nice things don’t fall onto the floor and become significantly less-nice. I marked the studs, and measured how I wanted my shelves to be on the wall (it is a diagonal-type wall, so I needed different lengths of shelf-tracks. I am a big fan of black iron and raw pine used together, and Home Hardware carries BOTH these things, for a very reasonable price.). I needed 2 4ft long tracks, and 1 2ft long track, and then I also needed 7 12″long shelf brackets, and wood for the shelves. I measured a LOT- because I typically kinda slap-dash things, and I wanted to actually appear competent for once.

Here’s my wood! (all the hehs!)

shelfwood

I got all the parts (after a second trip to get the 2ft long part, which I had forgotten about, because I wasn’t thinking about how long the shelves would be), installed the wall parts, and then waited for the WereHusband to come home and show me how to use the Big Scary Basement Saw Thingy that will Surely Remove All My Precious Fingers. And Then Who will Teach You to do Fingerwaves, I Ask You? Who???? uh.. anyway…

I’m sure there’s loads of you out there in the Great Interwebs who are already super handy with shelves, and stud finders (heh!), and measuring stuff, and using a big scary finger-remover (aka giant saw thingy in the basement), but I am a bit namby-pamby about this.. so it is with Great Pride that I show you MY SHELVES!!!

TADAAA!!!

shelvesdoneI am very impressed with myself! The coffee sign holds the salt lamp cord against the wall, so it won’t get accidentally grabbed when picking a tea cup! The tea cups are my Granny’s, and the table is my Great-Grandma’s! (and in the bottom right is a pouf of the Foxling’s glorious mop)

 

So- are you a big DIY type person? Do you measure twice, cut once?

-M

Holy Guacamole- GF Pancakes that DON’T SUCK! Test Human survives!

I did it.

gfpancakes

I don’t know how… I don’t know what blessed stars aligned, or whether I got out of bed on my left foot yesterday, or if I should have bought a lottery ticket… but somehow I successfully created EASY GLUTEN-FREE PANCAKES! (Actually, GRAIN-FREE).

And, they didn’t suck!

Now, I am ok in the kitchen. I cook 99.9% of the food we eat over here at our Magical Dream Farm, and the wise dudes I live with don’t complain. But- I am repeatedly stymied by pancakes. Firstly, I ALWAYS do something wrong with the batter, even when I strictly follow the recipe. Secondly, I can’t seem to pour the batter nicely, so I don’t get nice round shapes, and Lastly, I can’t effectively flip pancakes OR keep the pan an even temperature (apparently), because they get more and more burnt as I go. Yum. NOT!

BUT YESTERDAY, I created DELICIOUS, FLUFFY, SYRUP-ABSORBING, GOLDEN BITES of awesomeness!

And this is how I did it.

YOU WILL NEED:

1 1/2 cups of GF flour/flour blend of your choice. I used PC All-Purpose.

3T baking powder* (I actually used 3 1/2T, but the foaminess was CRAZY, so I’m going to reduce this amount slightly next time, and  I suggest you do the same.)

1T baking soda

2T brown sugar* (I used sweetened almond milk, and IF i use the same next time, I’ll leave out the brown sugar, because they were a little too sweet with both.)

2 eggs

1 1/4cups milk of your choice. I used Silk Almond- sweetened Original

1T vanilla

3T melted butter (plus more for the skillet/pan/whatever)

WIZARD-TYPE MAGIC INSTRUCTIONS:

Mix all your dry stuff together first. You can use one of those fancy sifter thingies- I tried too- but my brown sugar clumped it up and make me angry, and then I had to take a short break and wander around my kitchen swearing.. so do what suits you here. I did this step WAAAAAY ahead of time- like in the morning, when I wouldn’t be making the pancakes until the evening. Just pop a lid on a pyrex or something and keep it uncontaminated until you need it. (And by this, I mean keep all the damn cat hair in this joint outta the mix!)

When you are ready: First! I fired up our “George Foreman” portable grill. The Dream Farm has a big island with an outlet, and I hit on the great idea of setting it up for pancake making like one of those fancy omelette bars at a golf course brunch. 🙂 I set it at 350degrees, then melted a few scrapings of butter.

As that melted, I added all my wet ingredients to my mix, and stirred them together. It got kinda foamy and weird- I was sure it was totally ruined.. but I used my 1T scoop (Pampered Chef), and dropped it onto the hot buttered drill. I used a spatula dipped in a glass of water to flatten out my little blobs a bit, because they just sat on the grill in balls.. and THEN THEY COOKED!

I flipped them after about 2 min, did the other side, added more butter when needed, and repeat!

I can’t believe this worked.

They were golden, soft, and awesome. AND EASY AS ANYTHING! Plus- since I made my mix out of things I already had, instead of buying a pre-made GF pancake mix, I saved about a bazillionty-dollars.

Give ’em a try, and let me know how they work for you! Do you have any easy GF recipes you’ve come up with? And did you eat pancakes for “Pancake Tuesday” yesterday? I’m not religious- but i am a BIG FAN of breakfast foods! 🙂

Be awesome!

-M