16 September 2009

breastmilk is not just for babies

Did you know that breastmilk can do more than provide perfect nutrition for babies? That's right! Here are some alternative uses for this liquid gold:
  1. Alternative or complementive cancer treatment option - Breastmilk has properties that kill bad cells and promote the growth of good cells. It is also helpufl for nausea when used with chemo.
  2. AIDS - boosts immune system
  3. Post-surgical healing
  4. Treat pink eye - Just squirt a drop into the eye...talk about going natural!
  5. Helps with severe allergies - Can't tolerate cow's milk? Why not switch to human milk?
  6. Stops itching on mosquito bites
  7. Skin care - nothing nixes a bad case of acne like mom's milk
And list goes on and on... For more information check out: http://kellymom.com/health/illness/healing-breastmilk.html.

wish list

Today is Marcus' birthday. This will be the first year we have spent his birthday apart. He's on a recruiting trip at Penn State, which is his 2nd love, so I think he's probably going to survive the separation. His first birthday we celebrated together was the weekend we became an item. Back then I was a little more ballsy than I am now...or maybe that's what they call smitten. Anyway, I organized a surprise trip with Marcus' parents (whom I had met briefly once) for me to fly into DC from Indiana (where I was in college) and then travel to PA via a friend. His dad then picked me up from my journey and took me to his house where I walked in and his family watched as my perfect surprise unfolded...um awkwardly. It was on that day I discovered that Marcus isn't big on surprises, but I never regretted my bold move which landed me my wonderful husband. To honor Marcus' 25th birthday I'd like to share his wish list:

  1. A can of Reddi Whip

  2. Entrepreneur magazine subscription

  3. Homemade pumpkin roll
How could you not smile after reading this? I'm lucky to be with a man who makes life so simple. Why is it that guys simplify things and girls dramafy them? Oh well, that's a whole 'nother can of worms. Unfortunately, I had to make Marcus cupcakes and give him a "voucher" for a pumpkin roll. Since he's on business over his birthday cupcakes are much easier to send along. Here's pictures of his early birthday celebration:
Cupcakes with Reddi Whip

The excitement

Happy Birthday Marcus!

11 September 2009

going granola

For whatever reason, I had a hankering for granola. I love sweets and love it even more when they are good for me! So, homemade granola was my mission for the day. It seemed like an easy and rewarding task. For inspiration I turned to my cookbook titled "Conscious Cuisine" by Cary Neff. Now there's "the recipe" and then there's what I did, so I'll share both with you and let you choose your own route.

Actual recipe:

6 cups rolled oats
3 cups oat bran
1/4 cup shelled pumpkin seeds
1/4 cup shelled sunflower seeds
1 cup honey
1 vanilla bean, split in half lengthwise
3 cups unsweetened apple juice
1/3 cup chopped apricots
1/3 cup golden raisens
1/3 cup dried cherries
1/3 cup dried chopped dates
1/3 cup dried blueberries

Toast oats and bran for 5-8 mins at 400 degrees. Toast pumpkin and sunflower seeds for 5 mins or until lightly brown. Combine vanilla bean seeds and honey and simmer in sauce pan for 5-7 mins. In another sauce pan combine apple juice and dried fruit and simmer for 5 mins, and drain fruit. In a large bowl mix oat mixture, seeds, and fruit mixture. Stir in honey. Bake everything for 10-15 mins until golden brown.

This can be stored in an airtight container for 1 month.

What I did:

I toast the oats and bran. I simmered honey with dried fruit and added a splash of apple juice (I figured the honey would soften up the fruit and Marcus appreciates it when I cut down on the dishes since that is his thing...clean up). I also just used a dried berry mix from Trader Joes and liquid pure vanilla, because I just couldn't bring myself to spend $10+ on one little string of vanilla. I purchased roasted almond slices and sunflower seeds, so I didn't bother with toasting them, and I added way more than called for in the recipe. We love nuts around here! I combined everything together, which I found to be the most difficult of the tasks. I ended up adding a little extra honey and apple juice because it seemed a little dry to me. I also found that 10 mins made the granola too toasty for my taste, so I will probably only do approx 7 mins next time. There you have it "my shortcut" to delicious granola for all of you who also hate too many dirty dishes, too many steps in a recipe, and too many ingredients.

My younger brother and a friend came to visit afterward and it was approved my them, as well as by my husband, who isn't always a fan of the healthy.