So let me introduce you to my newest toy. It’s a wonderful gadget from Finland called a Mehu Liisa. It literally the best way I’ve discovered to make glorious, healthy and clear steam distilled juices for drinking, jellies and jams! This is the result of steam distilling three bunches of fresh Concord grapes with some fresh basil. It’s just luscious and so easy🍇🍇🍇🍇🍇🍇🍇🍇🍇🍇...#juice #mehuliisasteamer #concordgrapes #vegan #jelly#jams#iwivip #freshjuice #mehuliisa
Last Thursday I spent the morning on New Day Cleveland! I was preparing spa products that were good enough to eat and wonderful for your skin! Take a look! You'll find the recipes below!
My number one rule. If I can’t eat it? I don’t put it on my body. Everything here is full of vitamins, minerals and Collagen enhancing ingredients to promote lovely and glowing skin!
Rule number 2? Do a patch test to make sure that you don’t have an allergic reaction to anything used here!
Rule number 3? Always Have Fun!
Mashed Fresh Fruit Body Scrub
To begin, fill a plastic bowl with chunks of ripe watermelon, papaya, a tablespoon of almond oil and a cup of brown sugar. Mash it with a fork. Step into the shower and rinse off with warm water, but don’t use soap. Then take a handful of the fruit and mash it in your palm. Starting with the arms and shoulders rub the fruit mixture into your skin in a circular motion. When you’re done with each handful, place it into another bowl that you’ve reserved for that purpose. When you’re done, rinse off with warm water and pat yourself down with sweet almond oil to which you’ve added a couple of drops of essential oil of rose. You will be a bit greasy but it will absorb quickly and your skin will be glowing and incredibly soft and sweet. Then wrap yourself in a lovely robe, curl up with a book and a lovely cup of tea and relax.
Elderberry, Blackberry and Chia Seed Superfood Freezer Jam
- 5 cups crushed Elderberries and Blackberries (about 3 pounds fruit
1/3 cup fresh meyer lemon juice (from 2 meyer lemons)
- 2 1/2 cups granulated sugar
- 1/3 cup (1.75 ounces) powdered, no-sugar-needed pectin
- 2 cups of chia seeds
- Thoroughly wash, rinse, and dry seven 8-ounce plastic freezer or glass jars with tight-fitting lids. You can also use zip-top freezer bags.
- In a medium pot, combine fruit and lemon juice. Bring to a boil for about 5 minutes over medium-high heat.
- In a bowl, whisk together sugar and pectin; add to fruit, stirring until sugar mixture dissolves and fruit returns to a full rolling boil. Boil 1 minute, add the chia seeds, then remove from heat.
- Transfer to jars or bags, leaving a 1/2-inch space on top. Seal and let sit at room temperature until jam is set, 2 to 3 hours. To store, freeze, up to 8 months. To thaw jam, transfer to the refrigerator and use within 3 weeks.
Caramel Spice Coffee Sugar/Salt Glow
- 1 cup ground organic coffee.
- ½ cup organic brown sugar
- ½ cup of Himalayan salt.
- ½ cup sweet almond oil (add more if needed)
- 1/2 Tablespoon pumpkin pie spice
- 10 drops of vanilla essential oil
- 5 drops of essential oil of Frankincense
- 1 tablespoon of Dr. Bronners Almond Castile Soap
Blend together and store in a jar. To use, step in the shower, rinse off with warm water, but don’t use soap. Starting wherever you like, rub in the scrub and then rinse it off. Coffee scrub are known to be great for helping to release the trapped fats that cause cellulite and the Frankincense oil is so good for the skin. The castile soap just makes it all a bit easier to remove! Use your favorite moisturizer after you’ve patted yourself dry!
Mashed Pumpkin and Spice Sugar Scrub
- 1¼ C. Brown Sugar
- 1 teaspoon of Pumpkin Pie Spice
- 1/3 cup of coconut oil or Ghee
- 10 drops of essential oil of vanilla
- 2 vitamin E capsules that you’ve opened
- 1 cup of mashed pumpkin (plain, not pumpkin pie filling)
- 1 tablespoon of Dr. Bronners Citrus Castile Soap
Blend together and store in a jar. To use, step in the shower, rinse off with warm water, but don’t use soap. Starting wherever you like, rub in the scrub and then rinse it off. The castile soap just makes it all a bit easier to remove! Use your favorite moisturizer after you’ve patted yourself dry!
Soothing yet exfoliating Mashed Sweet potato, Banana and Kousa Dogwood Fruit Facemask
1 medium sweet potato, cooked
2 teaspoons of sweet almond oil
½ medium ripe banana, peeled
3 tablespoons of Kousa Dogwood fruit pulp
2 tablespoons of coconut or date sugar
Put all of these ingredients into a food processor. Blend into a puree.
Open your pores with a warm washcloth and apply the mixture to your face , massaging in the mask using a circular motion with your fingertips. Allow the mask to set for 10 to 15 minutes. Rinse with cool water and pat dry. Then moisturize with a few drops of sweet almond oil. Bye Bye dry and flaking end of summer skin!
"Here’s how to make a very good cocktail: Start with excellent mixers, add booze, and shake. Bittermilk is a Charleston company, started by bartenders, making Southern-inspired cocktail syrups and mixers."
About 5 years ago, my husband woke up and said to me, “Lets buy a duplex in Cleveland Heights!” I’d wanted to move back into the city for quite a few years, but he was reluctant. We’d been living in apartments for many years at that point, close to my parents so that we could keep them in their home. I had been really missing my gardens and had even made a secret wish over the Yule Log at Winter Solstice for a house that I could call home again with a lovely patch of dirt that I could turn into orchards, vegetable and herb gardens. That morning, we began to scour the real estate ads. There was only one duplex for sale so on a whim we decided to go see it. We drove up and looked at each other. It was absolutely perfect. A grand brick side by side, with 2 porches (one up and one down) the length of the whole house. The yard was large enough to be sold as another lots and the realtor proudly told me that I could pay a good chunk of my mortgage if I sold it. I was aghast. It had three gorgeous heirloom apple trees already and lots of red raspberry bushes. It already had the foundations for beautiful gardens and a lovely side yard planted with herbs and perennials. It even had two trees to string a hammock between which had been one of my secret longings. We bought it one week later and christened it East Scarborough Fair. Living here has been a dream come true. We love our neighborhood and more than that we love our neighbors, community minded couples young and old who love the diversity and heart that this neighborhood, part of what is known as “Royal Heights” has to offer. There’s a 4th of July Parade, there are block parties. There are spontaneous cocktail parties and lots of wonderful children running around.
The holidays here are so warm and welcoming. So we lived here for a year by ourselves and finally decided to try to rent the other side of the duplex which we easily and quickly did. Yet it never has felt right. I’ve always felt that this house had something else to do…something very special. This summer when the lease was up, my renter let me know that she couldn’t continue. I put ads in the all of the usual places and started interviewing potential renters. I quickly found myself frustrated and I wasn’t sure why. Then it hit me. Our home wanted to be an Air Bnb.
Last year when we went to California for the winter, we stayed in a couple of wonderful air BnB’s. What a wonderful experience they were. When you stay in one you have the experience of immersing yourself in a community. The air bnb owners were wonderful people and they all spoke of really enjoying getting to know their guests as part of the experience. I come from a family of luxury retailers and way backwards in time, Swedish inn keepers. I longed to be having the fun with my home that our hosts were. There’s nothing I love more than providing a beautiful experience and remarkable service.
So it is with a huge leap of faith that we are embarking upon this dream. It makes so much sense to me because inn keeping runs through my veins on my mothers side, her family were innkeepers in Sweden. In her honor I’m going to use her family crest as our logo!
I found this on a friends FB page...I'm not sure who to attribute it too, but I thought it was perfect. I'm going for a long walk on the beach today, doing a bit of writing and relaxing, maybe some cooking and definitely a lot of cuddling. You can be sure that there will be chocolate and some really good magazines. I hope that your day is wonderful as well.
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When you're thinking about eating well, nothing beats a great salad! Here is one of the easiest and best charts I've ever seen for creating healthy , fresh and delicious dressings!
How about walnut oil, balsamic vinegar and fig jam on a winter salad of greens, fresh pear and blue cheese? Or olive oil, lemon juice, soy sauce , garlic and fresh ginger on a cleansing salad of fresh greens?
Your choices are virtually unlimited here!
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I'm cooking up a storm tonight, but I wanted to get a jumpstart on the busy week ahead of me ! To that end , there's almost nothing I look forward to more on a snuggly winters eve than having a pot of soup ready to reheat in my refrigerator.
This is my favorite cream of mushroom soup which I make using a really lovely blend of frozen mushrooms from Trader Joes ( one bag), 1 sliced leek and about a cup of fresh herbs from my garden ( parsley , sage, rosemary and thyme!) , 5 cups of coconut milk, 2 cups of filtered water, 2 tablespoons of any no chicken chicken base and a truffled bouillon cube all blended until smooth in my Vitamix!
I let it simmer for about 20 minutes and added a 1/4 of a cup of sherry, a tablespoon of dried dill and topped it off with a fromage blanc and truffle oil swirl.
I'm going to serve it tomorrow night with a plate of fresh herbs, French radishes, slices of good bread, tomatoes and a beautifully runny Camembert that I brought back from San Francisco. Oh and maybe a glass of Chardonnay by my silly yet throughly enchanting faux fireplace...
Life is very very good indeed......
I simply love the soft beauty of lit candles, (who doesn't!) Brass candlesticks, sterling and pewter..I love them all and have a fairly large collection of them scattered around my home and on my dinner table ! We always ate by candlelight when I was growing up, indeed as far as my mother was concerned there was no other way. Dining by candlelight softens the mood, makes everything look even lovelier, slows down the world and smooths over the ragged edges of the day.
I got into a really interesting conversation with a friend several years back. We were discussing the etiquette of candle wicks, specifically whether they should be blackened before the guests arrive or not. I mentioned my mothers rule that my friend had never heard of that was also the same rule that I learned at dancing school ; that you never were supposed to have your guests see your home decorated with unburnt candles or your table set with candles that hadn't been already blackened. My mother used to go around putting out new candles and then lighting them for a few minutes and then snuffing the wick. I remembered that when we'd give etiquette and entertaining talks people would ask her why this was so and that her answer had everything to do with being gracious and making others feel comfortable in her home and not wanting to give any indication of an ostentatious show of wealth. She also felt that unlit candles were very cold and just a bit too casual.
It's an old fashioned rule perhaps, and one that could be construed as silly maybe but I think that it's a good one just the same. Proper etiquette really has everything to do with making your guests feel comfortable. I think that the world's become a little too uncivilized these days and we could still benefit alot from applying these lessons from the past . I was very happy to find this article from The Charleston South Carolina School of Protocol and Etiquette that detailed my mums rule of thumb. These days, anything that can make us all feel comfortable sitting down and breaking bread together in a civilized way is just fine with me because I tend to think that we've all gotten a bit too casual!
One more wee bit of candle etiquette ~ Traditionally, you were never supposed to light candles before sunset. I still do this, probably because it is so ingrained in me. That being said, I do love the look of them at anytime and have been known to light them myself during a particularly gray sort of day. If you feel so moved , do it. For me, candles are a bit like seasonal food. Something to be enjoyed in the proper time and place and who am I to say that a snowstorm isn't the proper time and place!
From The Charleston School of Protocol and Etiquette:
"Have you ever heard people say, “you should burn the wicks on new candles when you put them on display”…do you know why?
As we all know, there was a time when people did not have electricity and everyone used candles to light their homes. Then with the invention of the light bulb, the people that had money and could afford electric power to light their homes, no longer used candles.
It has been said however, in order not to embarrass those who could not afford electricity; it was considered a polite gesture to burn the wicks of the candles on display so it was not known who had electricity…..and who did not.
Candle etiquette sheds a little light on the subject, by teaching us once again, the most important rule of etiquette…letting people save face and not embarrassing anyone."
My mother would definitely approve!