DIY Hair Lightener and Toner

Natural hair lightener

I love lightener aka bleach. I get annoyed when someone wants a foil with color. Lightener is my friend I have it down. I have learned how to never have to tone and can give you multiple tones with just it! As you can tell lightener is my go to. Well I have a stylist friend who posted an Instagram photo of her getting hair done using lemon juice and cinnamon. I decided I needed to try this out myself. Found a friend whose hair is damaged but wants to be lighter to help even out older color. We weren’t sure how well it would turn out. Happy to say it worked. Not crazy lighter but you can tell a difference. Plan to do it a few more times.

You will need
2 and ½ lemons, juiced
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
2 tea bags of chamomile tea, brewed extra strong, cooled
1 tablespoon honey
1 tablespoon olive oil (to help from drying out)
Feel free to adjust the amounts depending on how much hair you have.
Combined all ingredients. You can either apply this all over your hair or pick out select strands.
Once applied go ahead and cover your hair in a plastic cap, or a plastic shopping bag. If you live somewhere sunny and warm you can hang around outside. But for those of you that don’t use a blow dryer. You don’t have to heat it the whole time. Leave on for atleast an hour. Shampoo and condition like normal.

DIY toner

Water
Apple cider vinegar
Food coloring
If your hair is too warm for your taste you might want to tone it. And this is a simple way to fix any tone problems. Just so you know toner is not permanent. And the vinegar smell will disappear once your hair is dry!
Just use a drop or two to start. You can always tone again.
Orange use blue
Yellow use violet
Red use green
Shampoo, then apply to damp hair. Leave on your hair till you see the change you want. Wet hair always looks slightly warmer. Condition like normal.

Slow Cooker Corned Beef

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This year I was on top of my corned beef and cabbages, last year I wanted to make it to late there was no corned beef to be found😦. Ended up making it a week before St Patrick’s day.
I knew I wanted to do it in my slow cooker and wanted to use beer. seriously so easy just put everything in the slow cooker and leave it alone. Also that I wanted to cook the vegetables separately, so didn’t all turn to mush. Save all the drippings to make an amazing gravy for corned beef poutine!!

Slow Cooker Corned Beef and Cabbage

You will need
2-4 pounds corned beef, and the seasoning package
12 ounces of Guinness draught
1 small onion, cut in chuncks
2 clove garlic, chopped

2 cups about beef, beer broth
1 pound red potatoes, chunks
1 cup of baby carrots, chunks
1 clove garlic, crushed
1 cabbage head, cut in wedges

Place the corned beef fat side up in the slow cooker. Add seasoning package, Guinness, onion, and garlic. Cover with lid, set to low and let cook 7-10 hours (Depends on the size of corned beef and how hot your low is). Once done turn the slow cooker to warm. Take out most of the beef beer juice. Its fine if you get onion chunks too.

Add the beer beef broth in a pot over medium heat on the stove. Once simmering add the potatoes, carrots and garlic in the pot. Cover and bring back to a simmer. After 5 minutes add in the cabbage. Let cook for 10-15 more minutes.

Enjoy the meat with the vegetables. I love mine with horseradish sauce.

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Freezing food!

So much for me planning to write everyday. I have gone down to once a week and for the time I am ok with that. We have been hit hard by the cold, Baby has been sick with it for almost two weeks. I think it is finally leaving us! With all the extra stress of runny noses cooking has been far from my mind. Which is why I am so happy I have a well stocked freezer.
Recently I have gotten big into freezing items. Either already cooked meals, or staples so I always have them on hand.

Cookie dough freezes amazing! Make dough like normal, then scoop desired size on to a cookie sheet, stick in freezer. Once frozen place in a labeled bag. When ready to eat, place desired amount on a baking sheet. Cook at normal temperature. Just add a minute or two to the bake time. And fresh-baked cookies whenever you want!

Broths. I always have half open cartons of broth, instead of dumbing down the drain I now freeze. I freeze mine. 1/4 cup in muffin tins. Pop them out once frozen into a labeled bag. I add it frozen straight into soups. Other dishes I defrost first.

Tomato paste. Another staple that is so good to have. I usually only need a tablespoon or two, so I have to freeze the rest. I like to freeze mine in tablespoon measurements, much the same way as the cookie dough.

Soups. This is one of the best things I ever learned. I personally like to freeze it flat in bags, makes defrost process easier for me. Also with this I wouldn’t freeze all in same bag. Usually enough for a meal for my family in a bag. If defrosted in fridge you can usually refreeze. Sometimes pasta can get mushy, and dairy doesn’t always freeze the best. I haven’t had a problem with dairy just heard it in my researcher.

Fruit. I love frozen fruit in my smoothies. Lay out berries on a cookie sheet to freeze. Bananas break up in small pieces before freezing.

Veggie scraps. If you compost this is a great place to store the scraps so they don’t get all yucky while you wait for a full bag. Or save all the good veggie scraps to make homemade vegetable broth.

Baby food. We didn’t do a lot of baby food mush, but when we did it was homemade. I had free time, so would make a huge batch of puree fruit/veggies. And freeze it in ice-cube trays. Defrost in fridge.

As of now that’s all I think of but there are so many options for your freezer!!

Turkey pasta bake

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Pastas are so easy for me to make. All you need in some noodles, sauce, cheese and then some veggies. This is a great pasta with lots of hidden vegetables.
You can chop the veggies small if trying to hide them from picky eaters. I personally like them big so I get their texture. You can also add any the veggies in this. Would be great with some spinach added before baking.

Turkey Pasta bake
About 6 servings

you will need
1 teaspoon Olive oil
1 Onion, diced
1 bell Pepper, diced
4oz Mushrooms, sliced
2 gloves garlic, minced
1 pound ground Turkey
Salt and pepper
2 cups dried 4 cups Cooked shell Pasta (whole wheat would be great in this dish)
3 cups Marinara sauce (store bought or homemade)
2 ½ cups Monterey jack cheese, shredded (save ½ cup for top)
½ cup Parmesan cheese, grated (Save ¼ cup for top)

Pre heat oven to 350 degrees.
Make your pasta according to package directions.
Season the turkey with salt and pepper, while cooking over medium heat. Cook until done. Drain, put turkey aside. Add olive oil to the pan over medium heat. Add onion and pepper. Cook for about 3-4 minutes till soft. Add the mushrooms and cook for a few minutes. Add garlic cook until fragrant. Turn off heat. Add turkey back to pan and mix together. In an oven safe dish add the cooked noodles, pasta sauce, meat mixture and cheese. Mix well. Add remaining cheese on top. Bake for 20 minutes uncovered till cheese is melted and bubbly.
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Cast Iron Skillet Chocolate Chip Cookie

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So I love my cast iron skillet and try every reason to use it! Once I found out you could cook pizza in a skillet(Still trying to perfect the dough) I was beyond excited. And now to learn you can make a dessert in one too…. hello mind blown!! So I took a basic recipe and changed it a bit, like brown butter, dark brown sugar and more chocolate.

Cast Iron Skillet Chocolate Chip Cookie (With browned butter)

You will need for a large 12 inch cast iron, if you have a smaller skillet cut in half or bake two.
2 stick Butter
1 cup Granulated Sugar
1/2 cup Light Brown Sugar
1/2 cup Dark Brown Sugar
2 teaspoon Pure Vanilla Extract
2 whole Eggs, room temperature
3 cups All-purpose Flour
1 teaspoon Baking Soda
1/2 teaspoons Salt
2 cup Semi-sweet Chocolate chips
1/4 cup Reese’s peanut butter chips

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Melt butter in a cast iron skillet set over medium-low heat. If you have the time go ahead and brown the butter.
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Stir in sugars, slowly and vanilla and remove from heat. Be carful to not let your sugars turn to caramel.
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Let rest until pan is warm, but no longer very hot, about 5 minutes. Add one egg at a time onto the butter and sugar mixture, and whisk into the mixture.
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Place flour, baking soda, and salt on top, and very carefully stir into the mixture until smooth and well-mixed.
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Stir in chocolate.
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Place in the oven for 20-35 minutes(If using a smaller pan adjust baking to 15-25), or until starting to turn golden on the top and around the edges, but still soft in the center. The great thing about a cast iron is it keeps the heat so be careful about over cooking.
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Top with ice cream and enjoy!!
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Adapted from this recipe
http://tastykitchen.com/blog/2012/05/dark-chocolate-chunk-skillet-cookie/

Roasted Red Pepper Pasta

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I needed something easy for dinner tonight. We spent the afternoon at the beach!! In February… I know, I was excited. I was even worried about sunscreen for the baby!! But It was sunny and kinda warm, until the clouds came. So after spending most of the day at the beach, playing in the sand. I wasn’t wanting to think to much in the kitchen for dinner. This dish comes together super easy, and is very flavorful. Hope you enjoy too!

Roasted Red Pepper Pasta

you will need
2 tablespoons Butter
1 Onion, diced
3 Garlic cloves, minced
Red pepper flakes
½ cup Heavy whipping cream
4 ounces Goat cheese
½ cup Parmesan cheese, grated
1 (12ounce) jar Roasted red pepper
2 tablespoons Liquid from the red pepper jar
2 teaspoons Basil
½ pound Noodles of your choice

Cook noodles according to package

Melt butter in a pan over medium heat, add in onion sauté for 3-4 minutes you want them soft. Add in garlic and red pepper flakes. Let cook for a minute wait till they are fragrant. Add in cream, both cheeses, red pepper, liquid and basil. Let simmer, till cheese is melted. Blend with emersion blender or a regular blender. Once smooth add to the cook pasta, coat well, top with extra cheese and serve!
If you like your sauce a bit thinner go ahead and add more cream or milk to thin it out!

Why you shouldn’t wash you hair daily!

SO this is my first beauty post.
But this is a very important post. You would not believe how many do not know washing your hair daily is bad for it.
I personally wash my hair once to twice a week. Usually once a week. It took me forever to switch to this schedule but now I can’t even imagine washing my hair daily. I rarely have to use dry shampoo now.
Everyone’s hair is different but every other day washing your hair is way better than everyday!

The positives to washing it less.
– You can buy real professional products, and it will last forever. Shampoo, conditioner, styling aids!!
– You will save money since you don’t have to use the products everyday.
– You save so much time! Not having to dry and full-out style every day. My style can last the full week with just a few touch ups.
– It’s healthier for your hair. Your hair needs the oil from your scalp to protect the ends.
– Helps color from fading!

How to change
So the easiest way to switch your washing schedule is to train your scalp. If you say yuck my hair gets so greasy I have to wash it daily. The reason your scalp gets so oily, is because it’s use to you washing it daily. So it over produces oil. I know sneaky smart scalp!
Wait as long as possible to wash your hair, pick when you can wear your hair up, hats, headbands, scarves whatever it takes, but wait as long as you can. Then shampoo it, and wait again as long as possible. After that you should be able to switch to whatever schedule you want.

A few tips
– Some of my clients will still condition their hair daily, or just wet it down. But for me that makes my hair look stringy and greasy, so I don’t get it wet at all.
– I do shampoo my bangs almost every day.
– If you use a lot of product everyday, you might need a clarifying shampoo to help remove all of it.
– If you work out and it gets sweaty wait and see how it feels once it dries. Most people have said once dries you couldn’t even tell.
– Dry shampoo is amazing! You can also use baby powder, or corn starch. I just love how easy aerosol dry shampoo is. Just make sure whatever you use rub it in. Otherwise your hair will look grey!

I love hearing when people stop washing their hair daily, and how happy they are.