Vitamix for My Birthday, Homemade Shampoo, and a Spider Friend
This is our little fruit corner. We've been hogging a lot of fruit lately. Wintertime Vitamin C deficiency?
My mom says she is going to buy me a Vitamix blender for my birthday. I’m completely blown away by her generosity (again and again and again). She’s the best, and always has been. Alas, my birthday is in May, and this is February. Boo. But that’s OK; the Vitamix line is pricey, and this gives us time to choose a model that does what we need it to do, without expensive bells & whistles that we don’t need.
Its first task will be juicing. Now, in winter, I have little taste for cold juices in the morning. Sometimes for dinner, but I definitely don’t juice every day in cold weather (another reason to live in Hawaii). But come May, as the air warms here in New England, I’ll be back to banana/passionfruit juices. Or blueberry/banana, strawberry/banana, coconut/banana, pineapple/banana, kiwi/banana, starfruit/banana, or good green juices using greens from our garden. That’s the best.
The Vitamix will also need to effortlessly grind chaga chunks. Chaga chunks are really hard. A small chunk of it broke our blender not too long ago.
Other than that, I use a blender to make hummus, baba ghanoush, pesto, guac, chopped salads, salad dressings, salsa, and soups. Occasionally, I’ll whip up a cold tea frappe. I found a recipe for vegan banana cookies that uses a blender, and I really want to try it.
With every new acquisition, we sell or give away at least one thing we own. This, firstly, lets us travel as lightly as possible. I hate a house full of stuff. A life full of stuff. It clutters our space and my mind. We’re going to put the bread making machine my mother-in-law gave us last year in our June tag sale. It was a lovely thought, it cost her a few dollars, and I genuinely appreciated it. But I used it about 5 times before I started missing kneading bread with my own hands. And to be honest, bread machine bread is weird. Now, it just takes up a lot of space. Someone else will give it the love it needs.
We found a little spider in the house last night. We let insects that find their way into the house have their way. If they want to share our space, that’s all right with me. It’s been too long since I’ve seen a spider (meaning it’s been a cold, long winter), so I was glad to stop and have a close look at him. If you look at a spider closely, you’ll see how exquisitely made he is. A miracle of Mother Earth. This guy had a little, iridescent green ‘hat’ on. His front legs were longer than his back legs, and after I had watched him for a while, he raised one of those legs and waved. Hi, little guy – spring will be here soon!
Seeds from Italy shipped my greens seeds and poly tunnel order, so I’ll be watching for UPS every day. Greens seeds planting time is in about one month. I sow greens seeds no matter how cold it is, then cover with hay or a poly tunnel to keep off frost. This 108-inch-long poly tunnel I just bought also retains the sun’s heat, so that will move things along. The earlier I get these seeds to germinate, the sooner we are eating fresh salads and drinking fresh juices from our garden. I cannot wait – summer is coming!
Last, I’ve hit on a good recipe for a really gentle, pure shampoo that I started using this week. I’m loving the Morocco Method line I bought, but it’s expensive. I’ll probably buy it, but not as often as I’d hoped. Plus, with my DIY shampoo, there’s no plastic shampoo bottle to throw into the waste stream. I hate that.
For my DIY shampoo, I combined one cup of Dr. Bronner liquid castile soap (I used the citrus one) with two cups organic coconut milk (I skimmed the coconut fat from the top of the can and gave it to the dogs, who completely hogged it). To that, I added 10 drops of pure lemon essential oil. You have to keep it refrigerated. No perfumes, dyes, preservatives, foaming agents, or chemicals. It works great on my hair, and the fragrance is amazing.