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A Whispy Wonderland of Tresses.

So I recently read a post on a blog called Letters To The Editor about natural hair care, thanks to my lovely friend Carrie. I had kind of always had a sneaking suspicion that the stuff we buy at the store was probably not the best stuff to be putting on our scalp, due to the fact that I simply cannot pronounce half the stuff on the ingredients list. I’ve also heard things, but nothing had really motivated me to ditch the suave and go for a more holistic route as far as my hair goes. Well, thanks to that post, all has changed. I didn’t realize that shampoo was basically a detergent that strips your hair of not only dirt, but all of it’s natural oils. It causes buildup which prevents the natural oils produced by the scalp from releasing, which is why we need conditioner. But because conditioner isn’t the real deal, it doesn’t hydrate and take care of your tresses the way your body’s natural process would. Now that doesn’t sound TOO BAD, but as I read on I found that there are other ingredients in store bought shampoo that can be harmful to us over a long period of time. The post is great, you should read it!

Anyways, I decided to use the recipe she provided to make some natural hair wash and rinse. Now friends, I am not about to just give you a little tutorial on something I haven’t tried. I’ve been using this recipe for the past week, and my hair not only feels clean, but it has gotten softer and has stayed clean longer! I’ve used the wash every other day, and the rinse only once.  As soon as I share the ingredients, you’ll probably think I’m crazy. But fret not! The hair wash smells good if essential oils are added to it and the smell of the rinse is immediately gone after rinsing!

First, go and read the article and then get these items out of your pantry:

Baking Soda

Apple Cider vinegar

Essential oils (not necessary, but will make your hair smell nice)

The recipe for the hair wash calls for 1 tbsp of baking soda per 1 cup of water. She does mention that everyone’s hair is different, so it might take some trial and error to find the perfect combo for you. But this mixture worked for me just fine! The rinse calls for 1-2 tbsp of apple cider vinegar per 1 cup of water. Again, once it is rinsed out, there won’t be any smell. If there is a lingering odor, then you have used too much vinegar. This mixture also did great for me. Here’s what the process looked like:

I took an empty sparkling water bottle and got all the sticky off of it.

Broke out some of Martha Stewart’s craft paint (best craft paint I’ve ever used) and labeled my bottles.

I put 4 cups of water for the hair wash and 4 tbsp of baking soda. For the rinse, I only used 3 cups (since you don’t have to use the rinse every time you wash) and did 3 1/2 tbsp of vinegar.

I added a small amount of Lavender and Eucalyptus essential oils to my wash to give my hair the best smell (and the lavender also stimulates hair growth) It’s ok if you don’t want to add any oils.  Your hair won’t smell bad, it just won’t smell like anything.

And there ya go! Custom made, simple hair care products. Not only is it healthier, but man is it cheaper, especially if you have long hair.

Her post also includes recipes for other hair stuff like hairspray and hair gel!

 

Update: Here’s another really awesome, way more popular blog post about this from another woman seeking simplicity. She has been washing her hair with this for over 2 years now, and have a wealth of information! Also, after talking with a lot of people and hearing different takes on it, this method of hair care is not  meant for everyone. Don’t just settle for reading my experience, do some more research!

UPDATE AS OF JUNE 2015: I no longer use this as my main wash and conditioner, but as a treatment a few times a month. I have found that I like the combination of this as a treatment with quality shampoos and conditioners, particularly the ones that contain tea tree. I also do a warm coconut oil treatment once a month that makes my hair feel so smooth and strong.

Coffee How I Like It.

Well I didn’t post yesterday or Wednesday, which is a big fat FAIL. I’ve been having a rough week, and during weeks like this I tend to not do anything that I should do. Fear and laziness. Plan and simple.

I know I should be writing about what I’ve been going through, but I’m just not quite ready to do that yet. Instead I’ll prolong the inevitable and talk about coffee.

Hey, I’m just being honest.

So I’m not a big hot coffee drinker. I will drink the scolding lava every now and then, but I’m a iced-drinker at heart. Maybe it’s because I run hot, or perhaps I’m just a wuss. Call it what you will. Iced coffee is better.

I’ve found over the past several years that coming up with a time efficient and not-watered-down iced coffee recipe has proven to be difficult. I almost threw a cup of soggy coffee on the floor once because I was so mad that a COFFEE SHOP had no idea how to make an iced coffee. I’ve also had a few friends share with me their iced woes. I found a blog that talked about freezing ice cubes of coffee and putting that into your hot cup, but I just don’t buy it. You’d have to use A LOT of ice cubes to get it to at least room temp. And I’ve tried making a big batch of coffee and putting it in a pitcher and letting sit in the fridge. But that just leaves the coffee stale.

Are you ready for this? I have found the solution. Well at least for me. Here is a simple and pretty convenient way to make iced coffee at home. And yes, you SHOULD be making your own. Don’t be wasting your hard earned bread at Starbucks everyday (but do waste it sometimes…..)

Ok, here we gooooo…..

First brew your coffee (duh.) I put a picture up of a coffee grinder because you need to be grinding your own coffee. Vacuum packed Folgers is not acceptable. I know that grocery stores and coffee shops offer to grind the pound for you, but it will just never be as fresh as grinding your own. You can get a grinder for as cheap as $10 at Walmart. Make the investment.

Pour your coffee into your mug, and set it in the freezer. As you can see, there have been some coffee spills that I’ve chosen to ignore. Gross. Anyway, leave it in there for one hour. If you wanna get a little crazy, shoot for the stars and go for the hour and a half. Your coffee will have some frozen froth in there. Yum.

 

While you’re waiting, do something fun like stare at your cute baby. If you don’t have a baby, play with your pet. Or get ready for work. Or take a couple of laps. Or do whatever you like to do for an hour.

Can you tell that I’m not very good at pouring things? Take the coffee out of the freezer, and pour it into a regular glass. I’m kinda anal about this. I don’t like to drink my iced coffee in a hot coffee mug. There’s no particular reason. Usually I pour it into my cute teal iced coffee tumbler, but unfortunately it is sitting in the back seat of our car parked at Daniel’s office.

Now for the sugar and cream. Here’s where it gets debatable. I like to add my sugar in AFTER it’s gotten cold. No, it doesn’t desolve as well but I like it that way. It leaves some sugar granules at the bottom of the glass for later, and I love the crunching texture of sugar between my teeth. But of course you can add the sugar before you put it in the freezer so it melts first thing. Also, I don’t usually use heavy whipping cream to lighten my coffee, it’s like drinking love handles. Usually I use Organic Valley’s Half-n-Half and somehow justify that that’s healthier.

Add some ice cubes and drink up!

I go through this process every morning and it has worked out just fine. No watered down or stale coffee. It’s worth the hour wait, and I have that time to kill anyway. Most people wake up at least an hour before they go to work, so just brew that cup first thing. If you simply don’t have the extra sixty minutes in your morning, then you can make your coffee the night before. But only make enough for one serving and make sure you cover or put a top on the glass while it sits overnight. I just hate a skunky, dried out cup of coffee. It tastes like bad beef jerky.

So how do you like your coffee? Any good recipes you’d like to share?

Weekend Buys.

I had such a great weekend with my man and my boy. Saturday we strolled the annual Olustee Festival down Marion St. with Daniel’s mom and enjoyed fair foods. I got a corn dog and some deep fried oreos that nearly sent me into a food coma and gave me a yucky headache. It was completely worth it. I also made some fantastic purchases:

Ok, so talk about some delicious smelling soap that leaves you all soft and clean. Goats milk soap is the best. I got this from the a.k.a. farms booth at the festival. I was so happy to find that they still had some Fresh Snow scent left. Daniel and I got a bar of it for Christmas and still haven’t used it because it makes our entire bathroom smell like sweet tarts! They have all kinds of scented goats milk soaps, and if you live in Lake City then you are in luck! They are at the Lake Desoto Farmers Market every week. If your not local, then click here to visit their site and buy some soap!

I got these artsy Dia De Los Muertos coasters from one of my favorite ladies. Corrine makes all kinds of wonderful stuff, and you can also find her at the Farmers Market in town. Visit her etsy shop and look through all her goodies. I chose these coasters because my sister also likes this kind of art and I wanted to add these to her house warming package.

I definitely didn’t get these at the festival. Saturday evening Daniel’s parents and I took Daniel to Jacksonville for a Guitar Center birthday shopping spree and Cheesecake Factory. The wait for dinner was 45 minutes. I had an anthropoligie gift card that my friend Leanne gave to me for my birthday, and a store HAPPENED to be within walking distance from the restaurant. I picked up these three pretty cabinet nobs that I am going to install in my bedroom to hang necklaces off of.

So overall, my weekend was much fun and I am very satisfied with my purchases. How was your weekend?