>U Mom Knows Best: September 2019

Saturday, September 14, 2019

Rosemary and Caramelized Onion Sun Dried Tomato Focaccia

Focaccia is a flat oven-baked Italian bread product similar in style and texture to pizza dough.

               I received a sample from Secolari to facilitate this post

 The other day my church had a celebration that included a cookout with burgers. I helped with the preparation of the food and that included slicing onions and tomatoes. While I was slicing the tomatoes for the burgers, I placed the top slices of the tomatoes aside so I could take them home. The top slices had the stems in them so they were not going to be used for the burgers and I hated throwing them away as I knew that I could use them in my cooking. When the church event was over there was also leftovers of onion slices and tomato slices, so I took those home with me. One of the perks of helping in the church kitchen is being offered the leftovers.





I thought of sun-dried tomatoes
  On the drive home from church, I decided to make sun-dried tomatoes with all the leftover tomato slices. This is my go-to recipe when I have an abundance of tomatoes as it is a great way to preserve them. I have a wonderful recipe for making sun-dried tomatoes in the oven that is so simple. I love tomatoes that are roasted in the oven as they are so flavorful and sweet. My favorite way to use oven-roasted tomatoes is on focaccia. I love using rosemary on my focaccia as it gives it a great flavor but my family is not too fond of the wood-like texture that rosemary has and the fact that the pieces tend to get stuck in your teeth. So I decided to use a Fused Rosemary Flavored Olive Oil. My favorite olive oil is made from fresh-picked rosemary leaves and has the full flavor of rosemary without the woodsy pieces. That way I get the taste of rosemary on my focaccia without upsetting my family. When my youngest saw this bottle of olive oil, he asked me if we could use it to make my Lemon Frosted Rosemary Holiday Sugar Cookies. That boy loves cookies and already is thinking of Christmas cookies. I told my son that since this olive oil has a light smooth flavor, it might be great for cookies.

         I love my new cobalt blue pans. This non-stick ceramic pan is a safe pan for cooking as it is free of PTFE & PFOA chemicals. Head over HERE to find out more about this pan that comes in so many beautiful colors.

Caramelized onions
 Since I had an abundance of onions, I decide to make a batch of caramelized onions. Caramelized onions are also great to use in my recipes like pizza and focaccia. When onions are caramelized they last longer in the fridge so I would have plenty of time to use them in many recipes. I knew that my Secolari Rosemary Oil would be useful for sauteing all the onions and would give a unique flavor to my caramelized onions. Secolari makes so many gourmet Artisan oils that I know will add some intense flavor to my cooking. To me, quality olive oil is like a fine bottle of wine. Good olive oil equals the best flavor. So I don't skimp on that bottle of olive oil. You will love that this recipe is vegan and plant-based. 


Focaccia is like a pizza
 Focaccia is so similar to a pizza and is the perfect canvas to so many pizza toppings. So I decided that my homemade focaccia bread needed some olives. My favorite olives are black olives and green ripe California olives. I always have a can or two of these delicious olives in my pantry for snacking or for recipes. I knew that that the jumbo ripe black olives would add some additional flavor to my chewy focaccia. So I sliced the black olives in half. You can slice the olives anyway you like for this recipe but I thought that halved olives would give this homemade bread a cool look. If you like pizza, you need to make my Wild Mushroom Pizza With Caramelized Onions.


Fused vs infused olive oil
An infused oil is when the flavor or extracts are added after the oil is pressed which causes the oil to breakdown faster. When olives and fresh-picked rosemary are fused, cold-pressed, together at the same time, the result is a better quality flavorful olive oil.


Kneading dough is so relaxing
 I love kneading dough and find it to be so relaxing. It takes away any stress if I have any, but I really just enjoy the way it feels in my hands. I love making homemade bread and pizza when the weather cools down as the oven heats up the house. The smell of fresh-baked bread is a pleasing aroma that I also love. Have you ever walked past a bakery when they are making bread? It is one of the best smells in the world. The smell of bread baking in the oven is so intoxicating! Fall is the perfect time to make my homemade pretzel bread or honey whole wheat bread for sandwiches. 



 Once the dough rises, press it to fit a 13×9 inch lightly oiled baking pan.  Dimple the dough all over with your fingers and drizzle with the fuse Rosemary Olive Oil. Add the topping and press them gently into the dough. I love the art of making bread. To bring out the taste of the garden-fresh ingredients, sprinkle the focaccia lightly with some sea salt.


Bake until golden brown then transfer to a rack to cool





Yield: 12
Author:

Rosemary and Caramelized Onion Sun-Dried Tomato Focaccia

Focaccia is a flat oven-baked Italian bread product similar in style and texture to pizza dough.
prep time: cook time: total time:

ingredients:

  • 1 Package Dry Yeast
  • 1 Cup Warm Water, 110°F – 115°F
  • 1 Teaspoon Honey
  • 2 1/2 Cups All-Purpose Flour
  • 1Teaspoon Salt
  • 1/4 Cup Olive Oil, I love using Rosemary Olive Oil
  • 1 Large Onion, thinly sliced and chopped into small pieces
  • 1 Tablespoon Olive Oil, for cooking the caramelized onions
  • 1/2 Cup Sundried Tomatoes
  • 1 Cup Black Olives,  pitted and sliced into half or quarters
  • 1/4 Cup Olive Oil divided in half for drizzling over the dough

instructions:

How to cook Rosemary and Caramelized Onion Sun-Dried Tomato Focaccia

  1. In a large mixing bowl, combine the water and honey. Sprinkle the yeast on top and allow it to stand for about 5-10 minutes or until foamy.
  2. When the yeast is ready, stir in the flour, 1/4 cup olive oil, and salt. Turn the dough onto a well-floured surface and knead until dough is smooth 5 to 10 minutes. Place dough in a lightly oiled bowl, cover with a clean kitchen towel or plastic wrap, and let rest in a warm place until dough doubles in size, about 1 hour
  3. While the dough is rising, heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a large skillet set over medium heat. Add the onion slices and cook until onion is golden brown, stirring frequently about 20 minutes.
  4. After the dough has doubled in size, remove dough from bowl and press it into a lightly oiled 9- by 13-inch baking sheet until it touches the edges. Using your finger, poke holes all over the dough. Drizzle the dough with 2 tablespoons olive oil. Let rest until the dough becomes puffy, about 20 minutes.
  5. Once the dough has rested, preheat oven to 450 degrees F. Lightly press the sundried tomato slices and olive slices into the dough. Sprinkle or press the caramelized onions into the dough. Drizzle 2 tablespoons olive oil over the toppings and bake for 20 minutes or until golden.
  6. Transfer to a wire rack to cool.
  7. Cut into pieces and serve.
Calories
315.47
Fat (grams)
18.42
Sat. Fat (grams)
4.07
Carbs (grams)
34.11
Fiber (grams)
2.06
Net carbs
32.05
Sugar (grams)
2.28
Protein (grams)
4.06
Sodium (milligrams)
231.96
Cholesterol (grams)
1.91
Created using The Recipes Generator

Friday, September 13, 2019

What To Expect When Switching To Sulfate Free Shampoo

 Making the decision to eliminate chemicals and switch to vegan hair care products isn’t hard.


      I received products from Nubian Heritage to facilitate this post

 I think making the wise decision to eliminate toxic chemicals from my home and body was an easy one for me. I was presented with the scary facts of what toxic chemicals like sulfates, parabens, phthalates, and petroleum can do to my body and I said yes to trying to have a chemical-free home. The fact that these chemicals were making my son's skin break out in a rash and making my skin extremely dry with dermatitis was a no brainer to me that I had to start using more natural body care products. Another reason was my asthma was getting worse and I knew it was time to say no to toxic chemicals in my beauty products.



  I said making the decision to improving my health with natural products was easy but the transition itself required some adjustments. Switching from products that I had been using for years and assumed were safe for my body to natural products was a learning experience but I was ready to make a positive impact on my health and the environment. Some natural, organic, vegan products were easy to switch out in my bathroom like SLS free toothpaste. Seeing the mouth sores disappear in my son's mouth was awesome. Even our dentist-approved of my son using fluoride-free toothpaste and he has not had any cavities since. Sure the cost of these products was overwhelming but I have learned how to make a wonderful Homemade Natural Lemon Drop Toothpaste and my son loves the lemon taste. DIY homemade products save me money but can be time-consuming so I will buy most of my natural beauty products and save money in other areas of my life, like making coffee at home.



 Some of the natural products that I find easier to buy than to make are natural deodorant and mineral-based sunscreen. I also buy room sprays with natural essential oils. I started my younger boys on natural deodorant so they never had to do an armpit detox. If you are considering switching to natural deodorant from aluminum-based antiperspirant, these tips on How To Switch To Natural Deodorant are very helpful.



  One of the recent beauty products that I decide to make the switch to was hair care products. Sure the detox period of switching from toxic chemical-based shampoo took some getting used to but once I saw the results, I was glad that decided to use vegan hair care products that were sulfate-free. My hair even looks better than ever. Here are some things that you can expect when making the switch to paraben-free shampoo.

 1. Less Suds
  The one thing that took me by surprise was natural shampoos don't have a whole lot of foamy suds.
 We are made to think that more suds equals better cleaning but that is not always the case. Traditional shampoos use sulfates such as SLS to create a rich lather with foamy suds. I had to learn to use plenty of water to work the natural product through my hair and not use more shampoo. Sure there were times I had to shampoo my hair twice but that was usually after I went a week without washing my hair. I still took showers every other day but I just did not wash my hair as it was not dirty.

2. Wash Less
  I learned that I really did not need to wash my hair as often as I thought as my hair was not dirty. We are made to believe that our hair needs to be washed every day to look nice but unless you are rolling around in the mud, is your hair really getting dirty? I typically wash my hair 2-3 times a week and my hair is just fine. Before washing your hair, try spritzing it with water first to revive the hair in the morning. If your hair feels greasy, then wash it. For me personally, less washing has made my hair not be so dry.



3. Changes In Oil Production
 Sulfate shampoos are designed to eliminate product build-up through the use of harsh chemical cleaners. That means that these shampoos can strip natural oils from your hair. When you switch to a vegan sulfate-free shampoo, your hair may initially begin producing too much or too little natural oil. For me personally, my hair got back some of that oil and my head was no longer dry and itchy. Stick with the natural shampoo as, after a few shampoos, your hair will adjust.

4. Changes In Hair 
  Your hair may become thicker and full of more body or even wavier. Traditional chemical-laden shampoos contain ingredients such as silicones and waxes that can build up on hair follicles. This build-up can block pores or weigh your hair down. This build-up can even prevent hair from growing. For me personally, after I started using sulfate-free shampoos, my hair went from wavy to curly. That was a change that I liked.

 This release of build-up can also do the opposite and make hair feel matted. This can happen when the silicones attach to your hair as the natural shampoo is releasing is trying to eliminate it from your scalp. This will last a few days as the build-up is being removed with shampooing.

5. No more itchy scalp
 Switching from traditional shampoo that contains sulfates, parabens, phthalates, petroleum, DEA, artificial fragrance or synthetic coloring to natural shampoo can relieve your itchy scalp. All those toxic chemicals listed above could be the cause of your dry itchy scalp. So when these toxic chemicals are gone so maybe the symptoms. I know that once I started using natural soaps, I know longer had itchy skin so I was able to use way less lotion.

6. May cost more
Natural and organic shampoos may cost more than their chemical rivals simply because the ingredients are all "real" and more difficult to source. If you were using premium shampoos already then you may not notice a difference in cost. In short, the cost is worth it for the health and environment benefits. For me, I would rather spend more money on natural products then spend money on medicine for my asthma or my son's eczema. You can save money by buying natural products that come in bigger sizes or stocking up on your favorite brand when they are on sale.



7. You'll Be Helping The Environment
 When you choose to use vegan, organic, and natural hair care products you will be helping our water sources. Fewer harsh chemicals down the drain are better for sea life and even us as humans. Those toxic chemicals will not be in the water that we may drink.


8. Try different brands
 Just like the traditional shampoo, you may find that one brand of natural shampoo may work better than another. So don't give up with the switch from toxic chemicals to natural products if one brand doesn't work. Try several brands until you discover the one that works with your hair type. Natural hair care products come in different formulas for different hair types and conditions. A brand that I like for my hair that tends to be on the dry side is The Olive Oil Hair Care Collection from Nubian Heritage. This cruelty-free line of organic hair care products is formulated with nutrient-rich Extra Virgin Olive Oil and other ethically sourced ingredients like nourishing Quinoa and vitamin-rich Moringa. I love that Nubian Heritage products don’t contain sulfates, parabens, phthalates, petroleum, DEA, artificial fragrance or synthetic coloring.


 I love how the Olive Oil Vegan Shampoo gently cleans my hair and leaves it soft and shiny. This brand also foams up and gives me plenty of suds. I love that I only have to use a small amount to get my hair clean. This organic shampoo also has a nice clean scent that comes from essential oils so it does not bother my asthma. Since this shampoo is made with natural ingredients, I could share it with my son as it does not bother his sensitive skin.



How my hair looks when it needs to be washed

 When my dry hair is screaming for moisture, the joys of living in the desert, I will use Nubian Heritage Olive Oil Vegan Deep Condition Masque. This deep treatment masque gives my hair intense moisture that leaves my hair smooth and silky.

The Nubian Heritage Hair Care Collections are available at Vitamin Shoppe, VitaminShoppe.com, and nubianheritage.com


 Since switching to organic shampoo, I have noticed that my hair has a nice curl to it after I wash it. When I wake up in the morning, my curls are gone. So I take a mister bottle filled with water and spritz it on my hair. The moisture revives those curls and then I use Nubian Heritage Styling Mousse to add more definition to my natural curls. This unique product is enriched with extra-moisturizing Olive, Moringa Oils, and nutrient-rich Quinoa that helps tame the frizz that my curls get from the dry weather of the desert. I might complain about the dry desert but my hair doesn't like humidity either. My curly hair gets very poofy when we do get rain. Natural hair care products have been a blessing to my hair and my health. I am glad that I decided to make the switch. I now dislike using traditional hair care products on my hair and will even bring my organic vegan products with me when I stay at hotels, even though the hotels provide free body care products.

Have you considered switching to natural hair care products?






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Exp 09/29/2019






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Visit this page on Fridays.
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Thursday, September 12, 2019

Natural Products To Keep Kids Healthy

How I keep my kids healthy during the school year


               I received samples from CleanWell and Sambucol to facilitate this post

 For most people with school-age kids, the school year has started. The swapping of germs has probably begun and if you are like me, you are taking measures to keep your kids well and in school. It is not a good thing when kids are sick as that means you have to miss work so you can stay home with your kids. If you are a stay at home parent that means you have to stay home and rearrange all your plans. The simple fact is no one likes being sick and no one likes taking care of a sick kid. As a parent, we will do anything to keep our kids healthy.




 I have been doing this parenting thing for 29 years and I have learned over the years how to keep my kids healthy so their bodies can resist the germs that they face every day at school. My oldest kids are 29,25, and 19 (they are out of the house) and my youngest are 11 and 12. My youngest two boys seem to have fewer illnesses than their older siblings and I think that has a lot to do with healthy practices that I have learned over the years. I like to joke with my older three kids that they were the practice kids as I do things way different from my younger two boys. Things that I have done differently, I think are keeping my boys more healthy and they have less sickness than the older kids.

Pack more than food in their lunch box

 Schools seem to be a breeding place for germs and I think the number one way that kids contact those germs is on their hands. Kids touch so many things at school that could be loaded with germs and it is nearly impossible for my boys to avoid touching germs. So the one thing that I stress to my boys it to keep their hands away from their face as the face has several holes like the mouth, nose, and eyes that germs can enter. Then I remind my boys to wash their hands before eating. That way germs do not get on their food. In a perfect world, my boys would wash their hands before lunch but the teachers do not give them time to wash their hands. So I pack a little something extra in my boy's lunch sack.


 I pack travel-size botanical hand sanitizing wipes and sanitizers in my boy's lunch containers. That way my boys can easily wipe or spray away the germs with an alcohol-free that has Botanically Based ingredients. This safe hand sanitizer has plant-based ingredients that smell good so kids will want to use them. CleanWell made their Kid-friendly formula with an orange-vanilla scent and it doesn't have a bad chemical odor.


 The wipes and spray hand sanitizer kills the germs but is gentle on sensitive skin. The Benzalkonium Chloride free and Alcohol-free sanitizer won't even sting cuts so kids will use them before eating lunch. I love that these travel-sized hand sanitizers are small enough to fit in a pocket or backpack. So when my boys are unable to wash their hands with soap and water, they can use the next best thing to get the dirt and germs off their hands.



Wash hands often
 I am huge into handwashing as a way to keep germs out of kid's bodies. I know that frequent hand washing has kept my boys from catching all those colds that are being passed around at school. I have taught my boys at an early age the importance of handwashing and these are the best handwashing tips to teach kids at any age. My boys know that they need to wash their hands before eating, after using the bathroom, and when they come into the house after school or from play. Frequent handwashing gets those germs and dirt off kids hands so they have less chance of entering the body to cause an illness.



My boys love black elderberry syrup 



 When my boys head back to school, I stock up on black elderberry syrup and gummies. My boys love the taste of this immune support supplement. So I give my boys black elderberry on a regular basis to keep their immune system healthy. If my boys complain of a sore throat or start coughing, I give them some extra elderberry syrup so they can get over the cold quicker. I love making my own black elderberry syrup and elderberry gummies. These homemade recipes not only save me money but it assures that I always have a generous supply of elderberry products in the house to keep my boys healthy during cold and flu season. I loved that last month I was able to share some samples of black elderberry gummies with my friends.



Black elderberries are one of nature’s richest sources of pigments called anthocyanins which have a remarkable ability to stimulate the body’s immune system.



Get my homemade DIY recipes for Black Elderberry Syrup and Black Elderberry Gummies

Homemade Elderberry Syrup In The Pressure Cooker
https://www.momknowsbest.net/2018/02/homemade-elderberry-syrup-in-pressure.html

Elderberry Cold & Flu Fighting Gummies
https://www.momknowsbest.net/2018/02/elderberry-cold-flu-fighting-gummies.html



Check out this natural alternative to cold medicine

 My boys do get fewer colds than their older siblings but they still do get the occasional cold despite all my efforts. Sometimes germs are airborne and these airborne germs can travel 15 to 25 feet in the air. As my husband who is a health inspector quoted " I can sneeze from the kitchen and those germs will travel quickly over to you." So when my boys do catch a cold, this mom makes them a natural alternative to cold medicine. This delicious lemon ginger tea soothes my boy's throat and helps clear all the gunk from their sinuses. The healthy ingredients in this cold and flu tea have germ-fighting immunity properties like vitamin C from the lemons. Even the honey and ginger help support the immune system. So I like to drink this tea frequently in the winter to keep my body healthy. My boys love when I make a pitcher of the lemon ginger tea and store it in the fridge so they can enjoy it cold. The tea works best when it is warm for colds but can be enjoyed cold for immune support.

 

Other things that I do to keep my boys healthy during cold and flu season and throughout the school year is feeding them healthy food and making sure they get plenty of exercise. My boys know that eating fruits and veggies will give them vitamin C which is good for fighting germs. They also know that healthy bodies need exercise. I like to think of exercise as the body heating up to zap the germs. My boys also drink plenty of water to stay well. My husband says I drink water like a fish but I rarely get sick so that water must be good for my body.

What healthy things do you practice to keep your kids healthy?



Wednesday, September 11, 2019

4 Best Strength Exercises

Image Credit: Pexels


 It goes without saying that exercise is a crucial part of maintaining your overall health. Whatever your preferred method of working out is, it is recommended that we make time for at least 30 minutes of exercise each day. Strength training is an important part of any workout routine, as these exercises work to build muscle and increase overall body strength. If you’re looking to shake up your workout regimen, here are 4 of the best strength exercises you should be doing.

Push-ups 
Push-ups aren’t exactly a new exercise, but they are still highly beneficial nonetheless. They help to train the upper body muscles through the “pushing” motion of the exercise, as well as engages your core and chest muscles. To perform a proper push-up, get into a plank position with your hands at shoulder-width length apart directly under your shoulders. Then, simply lower yourself until your chest is slightly above the ground, and go back up. It can be helpful to keep track of how many push-ups you’re doing by breaking them into “reps.” Push-ups are an easy and effective exercise that can be performed virtually anywhere, even between your showings for houses for sale in Edmonton.

Hip Extensions 
This next exercise is great for strengthening one of the body’s most important muscle groups- the glutes. Hip extensions work to build and strengthen the glutes, which is especially important for athletes or anyone who is regularly physically active. To perform hip extensions, start by positioning the back of your shoulders on something stable, and plant your feet firmly on the ground. Then, squeeze your glutes and rise up into a bridge position with your hips fully extended. You will quickly be able to feel the burn using this exercise, and you can add or take away weight as you see fit.

Planks 
Planks are one of the most dreaded exercises for many people, but they are actually highly beneficial in building strength and resistance. Planks engage your core and help build strength in that area, so if six-pack abs are what you desire, this exercise is for you. To perform a plank, get into a push-up position with your arms shoulder-width length apart. While engaging your core, hold this position for at least 30 seconds, and repeat several times.

Squats 
Like hip extensions, squats are another exercise that works to strengthen your thighs and glutes. To do squats, stand with your feet slightly further apart than your hips and facing forward. Then, bend your knees and lower yourself down, making sure your knees do not extend past your toes. Return to a standing position and repeat several more times. Squats are best performed in sets of a certain number of reps, but you can alter this number depending on what you’re comfortable with.


Tuesday, September 10, 2019

The Most Unique Coffee Subscription

If you are crazy about coffee, you need to subscribe 


        I received a sample from Trade to facilitate this post

 I love my daily coffee and look forward to that first sip of coffee. I also love trying different blends of coffee. I am that person who buys a different type of coffee every time I go to the grocery store. I love browsing the coffee section of stores and just discovering new coffee blends. I love shopping at stores that allow me to buy a couple ounces of coffee beans so I can discover coffee from other countries. I love learning about where the coffee is grown and how the beans are roasted. Coffee is not just a morning cup of joe for me but rather an adventure around the world. I love tasting coffee and discovering the different notes of flavors that are in the coffee. I am always on the hunt for exciting and new specialty coffee varieties. I also love to discover new ways to brew coffee and I am obsessed with coffee makers. I think I own 6 or 7 different coffee makers and coffee brewers but who is counting. When I visit stores that sell coffee makers, my family always has to talk me out of buying a new coffee brewing gadget.



The best subscription for coffee fanatics 
 If you are crazy about coffee for more than a pick me up in the morning drink and like coffee beyond the energy that you get from coffee. Then I discovered the Most Unique Coffee Subscription for coffee lovers and anyone who is curious about coffee. Trade has the best coffee subscription and the best selection of coffee varieties. This unique coffee seller has a huge variety of great coffee roasts from all over the world. Whether you are a coffee snob looking for a new bag of coffee beans, a coffee connoisseur, or just want to try new coffee, Trade is a place to discover so many varieties of coffee.



How to make cold brew coffee

Are you always on the hunt for exciting and new specialty coffee varieties? Or a casual coffee drinker just looking for reliably great roasts? Either way, we’ve got the right coffee subscription for you!



Trade will help you find the right coffee for your taste buds
 Some people who drink coffee know what their coffee experience level is. These people know the difference between blends and single origins. Then there are the coffee snobs who enjoy coffee cupping and can taste more than two notes of flavor from one sip of coffee. I tried coffee cupping once and I was not able to taste the flavor notes but I did taste the differences in the coffees and I also learned about different ways to roast coffee beans. What I love about the Trad coffee subscription plan is the fact that I don't have to know a whole lot about coffee to get an amazing blend of coffee as Trade has a great Find The Perfect Match quiz that will ask you questions so you can get a great bag of coffee delivered to your house every month. So you can get your fix of caffeine.



Why It Matters
Great coffee is a (delicious) journey and we want to make suggestions that are best suited to wherever you are on yours. We ask for your experience level first because your following answers can be interpreted very differently depending on how you identify.



I am at an intermediate stage with coffee
 My coffee journey started with me finding out that I am at an intermediate stage with coffee. I buy premium coffee beans at the store and I know a little about coffee roasts. I would love to be more advance with my coffee adventure and learn more about different origins and blends of coffees. I would also like to try more coffee from specialty roasters so I know that Trade can help me do that with their coffee program of the month. This coffee quiz helped me to discover many unique coffee blends. The coffee quiz was great for when I want to be adventurous with coffee.

Easy Cold Brew Coffee For One


Coffee tastes like
 What really helped me to decide on what bag of coffee beans that I wanted was the coffee filters. The filter section on Trade helped me to find the coffee that I wanted as it started with the simple question of ground coffee or whole bean coffee. The coffee filter section also allowed me to choose from the type of roast, the country where the coffee was grown, the coffee origin, and so on. The filter that helped me the most was what do you want your coffee to taste like? There were choices like chocolate, berry, citrus, and brown sugar. I selected brown sugar and there was plenty of coffee blends to select from. My eye caught the one that said Syrupy and Smooth. That coffee sounded amazing and I could not wait to try it.

Roasty and sweet, this espresso boasts notes of brown sugar and pecan that'd be just as delightful brewed as a filter cup.



These Gluten-Free Chocolate Mocha Protein Brownies are perfect with a cup of coffee- Get the recipe HERE



Roasted and delivered quickly
 After I ordered my coffee selection, Trade then roasted the coffee beans so I would get fresh coffee, not some stale coffee like you get in those cans of coffee. I ordered my coffee on Sunday and I had my bag of fresh coffee on Thursday. I was amazed at how quickly my coffee was delivered. I had to open up my bag of coffee beans right away. I had to use scissors as the bag was sealed for freshness The smell was amazing. I could not wait until morning to drink a cup of this coffee. I don't have caffeine after 4 PM or I will have trouble falling asleep.

How To Make Perfect Iced Coffee



A great cup of coffee
 I then brewed up a cup of coffee the next morning and I enjoyed the smell of the coffee brewing. Then after I added my plant-based milk and sweetener, I took that first sip of coffee. My coffee selection was amazing. It had a nice brown sugar taste and a slightly nutty flavor. This was coffee that I enjoyed. I will be sad when this bag of coffee runs out. I will then have to select another unique bag of coffee beans from Trade. This is a coffee subscription that you will love.

Head on over to Trade and find the perfect blend of coffee.





Monday, September 9, 2019

Improve Your Health With New Protelicious Gourmet Protein Powder

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Think beyond the gym with this gourmet grass-fed, cold-processed whey protein





 Most people think of protein powder as a supplement for gym buffs and bodybuilders, especially whey-based protein powder. They think of a weightlifter who is chugging their protein shaker bottle filled with some chalky tasting protein powder that lacks flavor. Protelicious wants to change the way people think of protein powder with their Gourmet grass-fed, cold-processed whey protein. Nobody expects protein powder to be delicious but this clean complete protein powder is just that and it is made for those who want to improve their health. I am a big advocate for protein powder as it is a delicious clean way to get that essential protein into your daily diet. My day starts with a fruit smoothie that I mix a scoop of protein powder into. It is my healthy breakfast that starts my day on a healthy note. I know that protein powder is awesome for my muscles and has helped me and strong lean muscles.





 Protelicious is a gourmet whey protein powder blend that was created by Sheila Partrat, an entrepreneur with a successful background in health, wellness, and nutrition. Sheila wanted a clean protein powder that had a delicious taste so consumers could get the support they wanted for their nutritional needs and enjoy the taste. Taste is a huge factor when people select their protein powder but they also want a clean protein powder. So Sheila Partrat started a Kickstarter to introduce an exceptionally clean whey protein that is devoid of hormones, antibiotics, preservatives, fillers, artificial flavors, and GMO, something that is hard to find in competitive whey protein powders.


 Research has shown that whey protein can be beneficial to our health beyond just meeting our daily protein needs. If whey, a by-product of dairy, is processed properly, it can have awesome effects on the immune system to help reduce inflammation, enhance sleep, help our moods. and improve our focus. Protelicious sources its whey from New Zeland cows and the whey is cold-pressed to retain essential nutrients. That is what makes Protelicious different from other whey protein powders as other forms of processing tend to reduce the nutritional values of whey protein. Protelicious cold-pressed processing results in an exceptionally clean whey protein that contains no hormones, antibiotics, preservatives, fillers, artificial flavors, or GMO's. This gourmet protein powder also has no added sugar so it is keto-friendly.

True Chocolate: think of a mug of hot chocolate. Minus the guilt.

Freeze-Dried Strawberry: like strawberries and cream for breakfast but without the fat.

Naturally Unflavored: our most flexible flavor great in chilled soups, mixed into oatmeal or juices.

 Protelicious comes in three delicious gourmet flavors that are gluten-free and vegetarian-friendly. This cold-pressed whey protein powder is smooth, creamy, and mixes well in water without any clumps or chalky flavor. You can also mix the gourmet whey protein into oatmeal, yogurt, and recipes for more amazing nutrition. I am a supporter of protein powder and use it daily in a morning smoothie. I also love mixing protein powder into my pancake recipe, brownies, and even my lemon blueberry zucchini bread. I have seen protein powder transform my body. I love how my morning protein powder shake keeps me full for hours.



Protelicious: Gourmet grass-fed, cold-processed whey protein

 Find out more about Protelicious whey protein and how you can get your hands on this gourmet grass-fed, cold-processed whey protein at www.protelicious.com.

Check out Protelicious on Facebook and Instagram





Saturday, September 7, 2019

My Carpet And Tile Renovation Project


 About a month ago we started a major home renovation project. My husband and I decided to tear up the carpet in the family room, dining room, and my office. We also decided to have the tile by the entryway removed. The carpet was 22 years old and it was starting to show its age. We decided that we would have tile installed in the family room, the entryway and the hallway by the bathroom. That way the traffic areas would be easier to keep clean. I hated having to shampoo the carpet several times a year and having tile in the traffic areas and the family room would be way easier to keep clean than carpet.



 We were considering having tile installed on the whole first floor but to keep costs down we decided to put new carpet in the front rooms. The front rooms were the dining rooms and my office so the got less foot traffic so they would stay cleaner. I really wanted the tile in the traffic areas so my boys could come inside to use the bathroom and not have to take off their shoes. I love that I can mop the floors and now my company no longer has to take their shoes off. My family still takes our shoes off when in the house so the dirt from the outside does not get on the floors. If a wind storm brings in dirt through the metal security doors, it will be way easy to clean up than having carpet near those areas.

 I forgot to take photos of the rooms of how they looked before and just have photos of the rooms during the process. I do have photos of what the office looked like before the house remodeling project as I renovated that last year. You can see my office photos HERE.

The dining room during the process

 My husband had some time off from work during the home remodeling project so he decided to paint all the walls. My husband suggested that we paint one wall in the rooms a different accent color. My husband also suggested that we paint the baseboards a new color. We decide to paint the baseboards turquoise as we loved how that color looks in our master bathroom. We renovated our master bathroom 2 years ago and you can view how the turquoise baseboards look HERE. One of our original thoughts was to put a turquoise accent tile around the floors near the walls but the baseboard idea was cheaper.



The family room during the process

 The home renovation project took three weeks total to complete. We had to move everything out of the rooms, tear up the carpet, and do the painting. Then we had a contractor come over to remove the tile by the door and tile the floors. This job took longer than expected, a 3-day job turned into a week job. We used a contractor from Floor and Decor and let's just say we will never use this company again. The contractor's company was North Bar Industries LLC and they were bad on so many levels. They were sloppy, never communicated with us, and made way too many mistakes, one of which they had to fix but it cost us an extra $75 in materials. We are still finding cosmetic mistakes on the floors like uneven tiles and places they forgot to use enough mortar. Thankfully a lot of the problems are covered up with furniture. This awful company hired workers that left a mess in the house and outside. After the job was completed, we found grout and mortar outside in our bushes, the street, and even the base of the basketball hoop. So if you decide to use Floor and Decor for your tile project don't let them assign North Bar Industries LLC as your contractor.










 We used a different company for our carpet and they did a great job. It was like day and night. The company that we used for the carpet install was Floors and More and I highly recommend them for new carpet. My daughter used them for the carpet in her new house and they did a great job there. Jim, the owner of Floors and More, took the extra time to explain the differences in carpet and never tried to sell me anything based on price. Jim was the one who did the measuring and he worked with us from start to finish. Jim sent another guy to install the carpet and he did an awesome job. This guy has been working with Jim for over 20 years. Floors and More has a great selection of carpet at prices that are better than most carpet places, yes I did compare. I really loved that he was able to have my carpet install two weeks after I selected it. We will be putting new carpet in upstairs in a couple of months and we will be using Floors and More again.


 Once the tile floors and carpet was installed, my husband installed the new baseboards that I had painted. I now understand why people charge a lot of money to install baseboards as it is a time-consuming job. It took my husband three days to complete but then again it was his first time installing baseboards. We are thankful for friends who loaned us a nail gun and a compressor. Also having the internet helped us with the baseboards. I learned not to use the plastic wood filler for the gaps but to instead mix sawdust and wood glue together for a wood filler. This worked great for the big gaps in the corners. For the smaller gaps, caulked worked well.


 Once the baseboards were completed, then it was time to move all the furniture and items back in. We also made things different in the rooms. My husband said it was time to say goodbye to his big box speakers from the eighties. We replaced them with some silk plants and deco clay pots. I am really loving the arrangement that I made with these tropical silk flowers.


 It is so good to have my office back as I went without a place to take photos in for three weeks! I had to box up all my dishes and props before the home project. I am glad that we had my son's empty bedroom to use for storage as he is away at the Merchant Marine Academy. He won't be home for the holidays as he will be on a ship then so his room will come in handy again for the upstairs carpet. I am so proud of my two older sons. The oldest is learning how to drive semi-trucks and the other is learning how to drive cargo ships.





   A word to the wise that I want to share about carpet installation is to not be in your house while the carpet is being installed and three days after.  The carpet needs to gas off chemicals during this time and opening up windows were not enough for me to not get sick. My asthma flared up bad and I had trouble breathing. I was glad that my natural peppermint and menthol rub helped me to open up my lungs. Chemicals are one of my big triggers with my asthma. When we carpet upstairs, I will be outside in the yard during the install and then we will stay at a hotel for three nights.


 I am glad that we decided to take on the project of new floors. We had been wanting to do it for a while but it just seemed too overwhelming. We had the money but not the time. I am thankful that my husband had some time off from work so we were able to get this home project done. The next home remodeling project will be the upstairs carpet and painting. This time we might hire someone to do the painting.





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