Category Archives: Recipes

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Pinterest Weekend Wrap-Up

During the school year, I have my kids primarily at my house during the weekends. It’s a bit of an unconventional set up, my ex and I share 50/50 custody, rather than the traditional; all week at moms, weekends with dad. I end up at dad’s house once or twice during the work-week as well to give him a break, and help the kids with school stuff, snuggle, play etc.

It works for us.

Now that my kids are able to busy themselves with books and games, I have some serious down time for Pinterest lollygagging. Here are the cool things I’ve found over the last few days…

 

1. Pixie Geldof by Stefan Zschernitz for Ponystep Magazine Winter 2013

pixie-geldof-ponystep-10

 

2. High Waisted Jeans – I resisted these for a while but I’m coming around…

highwaist

 

3. Guy Bourdin. My boyfriend turned me on to this fab photographer who shot for Vogue. I love me some vintage Vogue.

guybourdin

 

4. Big, round sunglasses. Just big, round sunglasses.

sunnies

 

5. Jessica Comingore | Broccoli Lemon & Parmesan Soup I want to try this hot and cold.

soup]

 

6. Knitting Pattern: Leftovers Cowl by Wendy D. Johnson. I’ve been scared to learn the fair isle technique for a long time, but somehow this feels less daunting.

knit

 

7. Jan the Happy Marshmallow. Just try to be mad after you look at this.

marshmallow

 

8. Wrapper Clutch by Stitch and Hammer. The perfect bag for Spring.

bag

 

9. Yucca With Garlic Sauce (Yuca Con Mojo). There’s something about yucca that makes me very, very happy. It soaks up flavor really well and the texture is just pure comfort.

yucca

 

10. I die for bold rugs in simple rooms. Gorgeous. Rug LOVE | The English Room , Sari Silk Moorea Fuscia 8.11 x 11.

rug

 

Follow me on Pinterest, here…

Homemade Anti-Perspirant Deodorant - All Natural | Yinmom, Yangmom

Confession… and a DIY

The black bar, for old time's sake.

The black bar, for old time’s sake.

It’s yet another confession-time here at YMYM!

I’m stinky.  Sometimes very stinky.  And, since I work from home, I don’t need to shower first-thing.  Some days I’m sitting here working, stinking this whole house out, and I comfort myself by pretending that I’m having a contest to see how stinky I can get.  Only, it’s just me here, so I’m competing with myself, therefore, I am the winner.

I use natural deodorant, and for most people, that induces a lot of giggling.  Because everyone knows that natural deodorant doesn’t work for shit.
Homemade Anti-Perspirant Deodorant - All Natural | Yinmom, Yangmom

I’ve tried a bunch of brands over the years, and found a semi-decent one, Kiss My Face in Peaceful Patchouli (the other scents don’t work).  This only works if you’re blind to the fact that it actually kind of smells like BO, only friendlier BO. Also, it’s very wet.  It’s cold.  It’s a roll-on.  On a cold Connecticut morning, the thought of being cold and wet is not-preferable.

This morning, I realized in desperation that I’m out of Peace Patchouli!  I don’t plan on showering for at least 5 more hours.  So unless I take action, it’s going to get scary in here.

I Googled, and came across a recipe for homemade deodorant.  However, I couldn’t make it, because my sexy beefcake of a husband, (who is also quite inconsiderate, hello!?) tightened up the jar of coconut oil so much that I couldn’t OPEN IT.  Ugh!

Luckily, I had some of the body butter, which I made for presents last week (click here to see that post).  So all I did was add baking soda and corn starch (or arrow root powder) to it.  The results are pretty impressive!

Just to let you know, this formula is weird, it’s a cream, and most American’s aren’t used to rubbing cream on their armpits, so it’s a bit different, but it works.  And the best part, it works at keeping you dry too (which, Kiss My Face does not do!).  YES!

The essential oils smell lovely, and dissipate as the day wears on, so you don’t smell like deodorant.  The baking soda absorbs the stench, and the cornstarch absorbs wetness.  The nice oils keep your gorgeous, lady (or not) pits from looking bumpy from shaving.  After a busy day working and chasing for a highly-active 3 year-old, without a shower, I am stink-free and loving life.

The full natural antiperspirant deodorant recipe is below.  You’re welcome, I love your stinky butts!

XOXO,
Mere

Homemade, All Natural Anti-perspirant Deodorant
Author: 
Recipe type: Personal Care
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 2.5-3 cups
 
Makes 2½ to 3 cups of goodness, which is kind of a lot. Basically it's three 12 oz mason jars, or 4½ 8-ounce jars. My suggestion would be to just make the big batch. You'll be glad you did, because it's easier to whip up when it's a lot, and because you're the type to appreciate this kind of thing, you'll either use it up yourself, or give it away for gifts. Omit the dry ingredients for a lovely body butter.
Ingredients
  • 1 cup shea butter
  • ½ cup coconut oil
  • ½ cup almond oil
  • Essential Oils (I used Lavender, Frankincense and Lime)
  • 1 cup Baking Soda
  • ½ cup Corn Starch or Arrowroot Powder
Instructions
  1. Melt the shea butter and coconut oil in the top of a double boiler. Remove from heat and let cool for 30 minutes.
  2. Stir in almond oil and essential oils (just a few drops of each, it's easier to add more than take away).
  3. Place oil mixture in freezer for 20 minutes.
  4. When the oils are partially solid, they'll look like yellowish goo, whip it up with a mixer until it's got a buttery consistency. It'll get very white and pretty, and you'll be tempted to eat it, but don't.
  5. Stir in your baking soda and corn starch or arrowroot powder until it's mixed throughout. (If you omit this step, you've got body butter.)
  6. Throw the mixture into jars, and apply daily!

 

 

Homemade DIY Body Butter - Yin Mom, Yang Mom

DIY Homemade Body Butter

Homemade DIY Body Butter - Yin Mom, Yang Mom

I saw this recipe last year for homemade body butter, and it’s so beautifully photographed on this blog, that I just couldn’t wait to do it. My plan was for this to be a 2011 project, and since plans were meant to be procrastinated-on, here I am one year later, finally getting around to it!

The recipe calls for “100% Pure Unrefined Organic Raw Shea Butter“. But, since I made this on a whim the other day, I didn’t have time to wait for the delivery of “100% Pure Unrefined Organic Raw SHEA BUTTER”, so I went to the health food store and bought a container or regular old shea butter, and lo and behold, it worked fabulously!

Homemade DIY Body Butter - Yin Mom, Yang Mom

I didn’t have a double boiler, so I just put two pots together. Make sure to skew them a bit so the steam can escape.

It ran me about $75 dollars for the supplies and the jars, but I ended up with 9 little jars, so for 9 presents, $75 isn’t so bad! Plus, I bought WAY more almond oil, coconut oil and essential oils than are needed for the recipe, so I have leftovers to use on myself :)

Here is the recipe, found on Rawmazing.com.

DIY Homemade Body Butter
Author: 
 
Makes 2½ to 3 cups whipped butter.
Ingredients
  • 1 cup Organic, raw (I used regular, and it was fine) shea butter
  • ½ cup coconut oil
  • ½ cup almond oil
  • Several drops of your favorite essential oils. I chose Lavender, Frankincense and Lime
Instructions
  1. Melt shea butter and coconut oil in the top of a double boiler. Remove from heat and let cool for 30 minutes.
  2. Stir in almond oil and essential oils of your choosing.*
  3. Place oil mixture in freezer or outside to chill for 20 minutes.
  4. Whip until a butter-like consistency is achieved.
  5. Place in clean, glass jar and enjoy! A little goes a long way.
  6. *Not all essential oils are skin friendly or child friendly. Please do your research before adding.
  7. Tips:
  8. You can use what ever oils you wish, just make sure you keep the ratio 75% solid to 25% liquid.
  9. The chilling step is crucial. If you don’t chill it properly, it won’t whip or stay whipped. About 20 minutes in the freezer usually does the trick for this batch. Make sure you scrape down the sides before mixing.
  10. Since this recipe does not contain any water, it will not mould. You should keep in a cool place but it does not have to be refrigerated.
  11. I do not know the exact shelf life but I know it will keep at least a few months, plus.
  12. The body butter melts as it goes on and gets a little oily but absorbs beautifully, quickly and leaves your skin very soft.

 

This stuff feels amazing on your skin, and really gave me a boost on a cold, rainy Connecticut day. It’s also a really nice texture for a nice back rub with your favorite back rub provider.

I made cute little labels, which you can print for your own gift-making awesomeness!

Homemade DIY Body Butter - Yin Mom, Yang Mom

There’s one which lists the fragrance, if you choose to use the same oils I did, and a generic one in case you want to experiment with your own combinations.

DOWNLOAD BODY BUTTER LABEL WITH NO FRAGRANCE INFO

DOWNLOAD BODY BUTTER LABEL WITH FRAGRANCE INFO

DIY Homemade Body Butter - Yin Mom, Yang Mom

Homemade DIY Body Butter - Yin Mom, Yang Mom

Here’s a link to the type of jars I bought, which I found at my grocery store (Stop and Shop): http://www.amazon.com/Ball-Quilted-Jelly-Canning-Case/dp/B000VTSYA8

Happy holidays, enjoy your gift giving and receiving!!!

xoxo, Mere

 

Donuts, Olives, Hot Dogs, and Some Healthy Stuff

This week there are people in my house who are sick.  I’m working hard at not catching it, so far so good, knock on wood.

I’ve been eating a lot of garlic, and drinking all kinds of antioxidant concoctions.  It’s working, I know it.

 

Tonight I wasn’t too hungry at dinnertime, after a busy day of eating donuts, hot dogs and olives.  My husband made himself some Ramen Noodles with chunks of hot dog floating in it, which didn’t appeal me (go figure!).  So, I made some yummy steamed kale tossed with raw minced garlic, parmesan and some apple cider vinegar.  Then I toasted up some bread and butter.  It was a nice little dinner that didn’t make me feel unhealthy, so I thought I’d share.

I know the picture is horrendous, which is why I used Instagram to fool you into thinking it was artsy!

Kale w/ Yummy Bread

Consider yourself fooled sucka!

I ate it all, then screwed it all up and ate 2 chocolate enrobed donuts.  I may or may not be drinking a martini now.  There’s always tomorrow.

xoxo, Mere

tutu

Girly Party Package Giveaway!

We’ve hit a major milestone, and reached 200 posts on Yin Mom, Yang Mom! Allie and I have learned so much about life, support, community and artistic expression in the last 10 months.  This blog has been an adventure for us both, and we have so many more milestones that we’re looking forward to reaching.

As a special thank you to the amazingly supportive, friendly and sweet people who have followed us on this journey, we’re offering a big, amazing giveaway!

One lucky reader will receive……

A SUPER SPECTACULAR GIRL’S PARTY EXTRAVAGANZA PACKAGE!!!!!

Here’s what’s included:

1. You’ll receive this absolutely adorable, gorgeous, sassy and sweet tutu (size 2-5 years), hand crafted by Whitney at Little Dreamers Tutus. My daughter sported one of her beautiful creations on her 5th birthday in June, and she was such a shining star!

Pink Poetry Tutu: http://www.etsy.com/listing/61666735/pink-poetry-tutu-nb-to-5t

2. You’ll also receive 2 dozen custom cookies, made by the cookie genius herself, Yin Mom, Yang Mom’s own ALLIE!  If you haven’t checked out her Flickr stream yet, you’re missing out, here it is:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/sweetiebirdbakeshop/sets/.  She offers an assortment of flavors and can do any design/theme you’d like, which you can discuss during your consultation.  Please plan for a 2 week lead time + 2-day shipping on your order.

Allie made beautiful cookie’s for Brooke’s birthday, and since they were gluten, dairy, soy and nut free, everyone got to have a very special day.

3. And lastly, 1 custom designed party invitation made by moi, Mere!  Here is an example of the invite I designed for my Brooke’s 1st birthday, but we can figure out the details as far as colors, theme, etc. during our consultation.  Once the design is ready, I will provide you with the final artwork files in digital PDF format.  Please plan for a 2 week lead time.

Here’s what you need to do in order to enter:

1. Please click here and Like us on Facebook, or Follow Allie and/or Mere on Twitter (click here for Allie) (click here for Mere).  Also, please be an email follower of this blog.

2. Please Like Whitney’s Facebook page for Little Dreamer’s Tutus: http://www.facebook.com/littledreamerstutus

3. And lastly, please visit Little Dreamers Tutus Etsy Shop, and then come back over here, and leave a comment on this post letting us know which one of her creations is your favorite!

One winner will be picked at random, and all of the steps listed above must be followed to qualify.

One entry per reader, please.  This giveaway closes September 7th, and the winner will be picked at random.
Best of luck! xoxo!

Happy Juice

Here’s a little something you may not know about me… I like to drink. Like really, really. It’s super fun and it tastes good. I’m Irish, Scottish & Italian, so it’s in my DNA.

Thanks in part to the “Mixologist” episode on Portlandia, I’m lately digging on a new breed of beverage. I normally like to drink Chardonnay, but in the summer with so many seasonal fruits available, it’s so fun to make something special on the weekend to sit and sip on in the backyard with my favorite drinking buddy (Jared).

Mixology is so hipster.

So here’s what I’ve been sipping on this week! It’s a Watermelon Lime Mint Cooler. It’s loosely based on this recipe for a martini:
http://savorysweetlife.com/2011/05/watermelon-mint-lime-martini/

I think my recipe is better than a martini because:

A) It’s hard to lay down in a hammock with a martini glass in your hand.

B) Martinis will get you very drunk very quickly and can be dangerous if combined with the heat of the sun.

This is my five-step program to drinking responsibly in your backyard:

Step One:
Remove the rind and cut up pieces of half of a seedless watermelon.

Step Two:
Blend the watermelon in a blender or use a stick blender (my favorite).

Step Three:
Strain the juice out. You can either use a strainer, cheesecloth, or my favorite; a paint straining bag. You can buy these little bags at Lowes or wherever for less than $5, and they work fantastically for making your own juice! I sold my juicer and use these instead because they’re so cheap and easy to clean and reuse.

Juicers are so last season.

Step Four:
Juice 1 lime.

Step Five:
Throw the watermelon juice, lime juice, a few mint sprigs, a tablespoon or two of agave nectar, 1-2 cups of water, and 3-4 shots of vodka into a pitcher. Let the flavors mingle in the fridge for an hour or so, then serve in a glass of ice and sip away!

Refreshing!

Meal Planning – Sigh.

It took a lot of discipline for me to plan the next week’s dinners today.  It’s so gorgeous outside.  Fridays I’m off and the kids don’t go to daycare, and it’s all I can do to stop myself from lounging around all day in my sweats while the kids destroy our home.  But, this is the only day I’m able to go to the store, and if I don’t do it relatively early in the day, it haunts me and I can’t enjoy myself.

I’d like to thank the good friends who came to Brooke’s birthday party over the weekend and gave us beautiful presents.  Those presents came in handy while I was writing this post!

He’s not afraid to draw dresses with pink crayon!

Making a pretty bead necklace.

Also, a very big thank you to the makers of Pirate’s Booty for giving me a laugh.

I am very mature.

‘So here’s what we’re eating!  You may notice there’s some cheese in the plans.  That’s right, I’m eating dairy again.  I have my reasons, which aren’t that I couldn’t live without it.  It’s that I just started having a gut feeling that dairy was not the problem.  I plan on going into more detail about that later.  For now, I need to get to the store.

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035

Meal Planning – Kid Food!

Today is my Brookie’s 5th birthday!  Most people would say 5 years flew by, but I think it felt like 5 years.  Brooke is a beautiful fairy sprite, and I am completely head over heels in love with her.  She came into this world and completely turned mine upside down.  Being her mom has taught me so much about patience, and for that I am truly grateful.  I look at Brooke, and I see pure joy, love and wonder in her eyes.  If everyone took a page out of her book, the world would be a truly magical place.

On that note, in honor of my sweet girl, I dub this week Kid Food Week.  Every dinner will be easy, and kid friendly, hurray!!!
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Meal planning – Food Bliss Week

I’m a little late in the game this week due to a very busy Thursday and Friday.  But, the plan goes on!  I’m really looking forward to the food I’m planning to make this coming week.  I’m still going strong on my dairy-free diet, and I really don’t miss it at all.  It’s funny how that happens.  Once in a while I’ll think I miss gobs of melted cheese, but then I remember how it makes me look like I’m 5 months pregnant, and poof, craving gone!

This week I’m making three recipes from pins on Pinterest, so I’m pretty psyched for that.  The zuchinni fritters look awesome, and I am going to have them with goat cheese, so that’s kind of a treat.  Then the Korean Kongnamul Bap, I mean, kim chee, rice, korean spices, you just can’t go wrong.  Jared and I love to eat Bi Bam Bap at Korean restaurants, so I’m curious to see how this compares.  The grilled shrimp with cilantro, lime and peanuts just looks so delicious, I can’t wait to try it.  Next week is going to be an awesome week.

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And, as usual, you probably can’t see/click on my calendar if you’re viewing from an iPhone or from your email.  Check it out in a regular browser when you can.

Meal Planning – Back to Reality

I’m back in the saddle!  We’re off to Trader Joe’s for groceries today, because the toy-buying frenzy that is Stop and Shop has got to stop.  I got into the habit of letting my kids pick out a small toy every time we go to the store, and it’s getting really old.  They’re starting to beg to go to the store every day, and when I say no, it’s a whole tantrum thing.  Then, when we’re there, it adds a good 10 extra painful minutes to my trip while they labor over their decision of what to buy.  After spending a million dollars at (almost) every. single. gift shop at Disney World, I’m done.

I love Trader Joe’s not just for the lack of toys, but the better quality ingredients, and abundance of easy food.  Ready-made brown rice? Yes please.

So, here’s my plan for the next week. I’m off dairy, so I’ll substitute Earth Balance for butter and hemp milk for regular.  It’s not too hard.  I’m feeling pretty confident that the kids will eat just about everything on my list this week, but I’ll keep some PB&J and noodles on hand just in case.
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And, as usual, you probably can’t see/click on my calendar if you’re viewing from an iPhone or from your email.  Check it out in a regular browser when you can.