Homemade Almond Milk and All Natural Kinetic Sand??

I have developed the outlook that the more I can make at home, the better.  I like knowing exactly what is going into the things that we consume. The thought of making certain things at home can be intimidating at fist but the more I made the more I realized that most things are really simple.

img_9864almondmilk

I have been a fan of almond milk (cashew and coconut also) for years now. My husband and kids love it as well but once we discovered all of the other unnatural things that go into store bought milks we were no longer happy with what we were buying. Lots of sugar and thickeners and things that we really do not need to be putting into our body. So I decided to look into making it myself and it turns out that its really easy. Ive been doing it this way for awhile now and the taste can’t even be compared! Although store bought is obviously way more convenient and cheaper, I think the pros far out way the cons in this situation. The cons being that raw almonds can be expensive and you do have to put forth a small effort to make the milk but if you can find a store that sells in bulk and if you own a blender or Nutri Bullet you should totally try making it yourself. We have a store called Winco here in Utah and that is where we buy all of our bulk items. They pretty much have everything you could ever imagine in their bulk bins.

Here is what you will need:

2 cups of raw almonds

3-4 cups of water

6-8 pitted dates

tea towels (cotton) or a nut milk bag

I bought a pack of tea towels at Michaels for $7. They came in a pack of 3 and I found them in the baking section or you can purchase a Nut Milk Bag on amazon.

I use my Nutri Bullet and make in small batches.

This recipe should make 3-4 cups of Almond Milk.

Instructions:

Soak almonds for 8-12 hours. Over night is what I usually do. Once they are done soaking, drain them and throw them in the blender with fresh water and dates. Dates are a great natural sweetener. I like my milk sweet so we add a good amount but you can add more or less depending on personal preference.

img_9788almondmilk

Blend for a good minute or so. You want to make sure the almonds are completely pureed.

img_9794almondmilk

When done, your mixture should be pretty thick. Like the texture of oatmeal.

img_9796almondmilk img_9798almondmilk

I lay my cloth over a 4 cup measuring glass and pour half of the mixture in the center. (I only do half at a time to make sure I get all of the liquid out and to make it easier to manage.)

img_9799almondmilk  img_9803almondmilk img_9851almondmilk

Squeeze the crap out of it!! Your hands may get tired so little ones are great to have around.

img_9804almondmilk img_9807almondmilk img_9808almondmilk

You should be left with this dry almond meal!

img_9801almondmilk

We store our Almond Milk in mason jars in the fridge.

img_9866almondmilk

img_9870almondmilk img_9875almondmilk

Now back to that almond meal:

What do I do with all of that left over almond meal??? 

I asked that very question the first time I made this milk. My husband decided that we would give ours to our chickens. But thats not all its good for. You can use it in baking (cookies, breads, muffins.) You could also toast it and dry it out to sprinkle on top of yogurt or salad.

The next thing I am about to say may sound crazy and I would not recommend doing this all of the time because its a bit wasteful and there a far better uses for it but….

On this particular day my toddler wanted to help me make the milk. Which meant that he got to feel that amazing almond meal and well.. it kind of feels exactly like kinetic sand. So I let him play with it. We are all about creative play and experimenting in our house and he was so interested in the texture of this stuff. He played forever. He said he felt like he was at the beach so I gave him some sand toys and sent him outside.

img_9838almondmilk img_9844almondmilk

The baby got in on the action also. He loved smushing it through his fingers and he may have eaten a handful or 2. With play doh I would have not allowed that ever! but this is all natural food ingredients so I was able to let him explore an have fun and not worry about it.

img_9823almondmilkimg_9817almondmilkimg_9830almondmilk

Hope you guys enjoy this recipe and feel free to comment any questions! let me know if you try it out.

xo,

Brittany

 

All Natural Diaper Rash Cream/Healing Balm

Or “Booty Cream” as my my 2 year old refers to it.

Easy to make. Just melt, pour and cool!!

IMG_4545 IMG_0417

Once we realized that our son was prone to diaper rash, I instantly became concerned with the store bought cream we were applying and how often. We had switched to an organic brand but I still felt that I would be more comfortable using something that I made myself. I already knew that coconut oil had some pretty impressive healing properties so that is where I started. I researched and tested and as it turned out, I already had everything I wanted to use in my house. SCORE! I melted these ingredients together in a double boiler (my own homemade version) and what was created was magic!! Its the perfect consistency.When it cools it hardens into a solid in the jar but once it hits your skin it melts right back into oil. I hated trying to smear that thick store bought cream on my poor child’s already irritated skin. The oil makes it so easy and painless to apply. The ingredients I chose all serve a purpose. Here is what I use and why:

IMG_0399 IMG_0402 (bees wax beads)

Recipe:

  • 1/2 cup Coconut oil– coconut oil has anti-bacterial and anti fungal properties. It also contains Lauric acid which is found in breast milk and has anti viral , anti fungal and anti microbial properties.
  • 1/4 cup Shea butter– Shea butter is extremely nourishing to this skin. It prevents redness and will protect the skin from wetness.
  • 1 tbsp beeswax– Raw beeswax is said to have anti microbial and anti bacterial properties and also provides a wetness barrier. You can use beeswax beads or you can buy it in bar form and just grate off as much as you need.
  • 1/2 tbsp coco butter– This is optional but I added a small amount as it is said to help heal skin irritations. Its is also high in anti oxidants. I would just make sure you use a raw, unrefined coco butter.
  • 15 drops lavender oil– lavender oil pretty much takes care of everything! Its is an antiseptic, its antibacterial and anti inflammatory. It also aids in the pain, redness and soreness of irritated skin. The scent of lavender is wonderful for soothing a cranky mood which I think anyone with any type of rash could benefit from 🙂 especially babies! ** I would suggest not using potent oils on infants until 3 months old. One of my babies developed a terrible rash at 1 month old so I treated this with plain coconut oil.

 

If you aren’t sure where to purchase any of these products I would recommend checking out http://www.iherb.com This website is great for finding natural products at a great price. They carry everything I have mentioned above. 

*for a double boiler i just used a glass bowl and placed it over a small pot.

IMG_0405

Just fill the pot with a few inches of water, bring to a boil. Add your ingredients to a small bowl that will fit on top of the pot without falling inside. Set it on top and let everything melt. You do not need to keep the water boiling the entire time. Once things start to melt you can lower the temp. The wax will take the longest. I usually add my lavender oil at the very end once everything has melted.

Now pour the mixture into the container of your choice. I used an amber glass jar that I found at a local health food store and also poured some into a large roller tube for on the go use. You can use any container that you have available. I allow mine to cool in the refrigerator for about 30 minutes.

IMG_0407 IMG_0406

This product has become and all purpose healer in our home. Here is list of some of the many uses I have found for this magic healing balm.

1. Diaper Rash (or any other rash or skin irritation): easy to apply. soothing. absorbs into the skin so no messy white cream!

2: Eczema: During my current pregnancy, my eczema has flared. This is perfect and really helps sooth and moisturize my cracked, red, concrete like skin.

3: Massage Oil: Also during this pregnancy my husband and I have been trading a good amount of massages. As I mentioned this balm turns  to oil on your skin so it makes for the perfect massage oil.

4. Pregnant Belly: I cannot claim that this has prevented stretch marks but….It hasn’t hurt either.Most of these ingredients are said to help prevent stretch marks.  I love applying this all over my belly. Its soothing, moisturizing and feels amazing.

5. Cradle cap: All of the same healing properties apply. I use a small amount on the effected area. Let it sit for a few minutes and then gently comb the scalp.

UPDATE: The roller container is great for on the go and also for keeping your hands clean. I don’t recommend keeping this in your diaper bag on extremely hot days! The oil melts and this container does not keep liquids from spilling. You are fine during cooler months but during really hot summer months If I am going to bring this with me in my bag I put it inside a easy to clean bag or ziplock. I take it out when I get home and store it in the fridge.

Homemade Shampoo

 

 

IMG_1048_2

Over the past couple of years my hair has really taken a beating. It was falling out in clumps. It was dry, brittle, it wasn’t growing like it used to and had lost all of its curl. It wasn’t until about a year ago that it hit me! Why is it that I take so many precautions when it comes to what I put into my body and I have given zero thought to what I use on my body and in my hair??? Thats when I started to research natural hair growth and conditioning treatments. This recipe will hold up for about a month without being refrigerated so you can keep it in your shower.

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup coconut milk
  • 1/2 cup castille soap (i use lavender because i love the smell but you can also get unscented and use any essential oil to scent)
  • 5-10 drops rosemary oil
  • 1 tbsp vitamin e oil
  • 1 tbsp castor oil (optional)

I use the castor oil for the added benefits and because my hair needs the extra oils. Castor oil is great for hair growth and to prevent hair loss. If your hair produces enough oil on its own, I would leave out the added castor oil.

Rosemary oil also stimulates hair growth and promotes healing. Great for your scalp. It also smells amazing mixed with lavender!

IMG_4590 IMG_4595 IMG_4592 IMG_4594

I mix all of my ingredients in a measuring cup and then transfer to a jar.

You can find Dr. Bronners castile soap at target

http://www.target.com/p/dr-bronner-s-pure-castile-soap-lavender-16-oz/-/A-10770139#prodSlot=medium_1_10&term=castille+soap

Iherb.com is a great place to find oils and other organic products

http://www.iherb.com/Nature-s-Alchemy-Essential-Oil-Rosemary-0-5-oz-15-ml/5745

 

Hope you guys enjoyed this post! Comment down below if you have any fun DIY products that you love!