Monday, 28 January 2013

"Lip balm addiction" does not exist

You lip balm people out there, you are addicted to a product that makes you need more lip balm! You are being charged a fortune at the same time, surprise, surprise!

I'll explain why you are addicted to the good shit later...

I live with someone addicted to lip balm, so I gave him the shea butter challenge. Let me fill your overpriced lip balm myself. Please note that a "decent" lip balm costs at least 7$ (or more if we are being real) 

You might also want to note that this huge brick of pure, natural, ecological, sustainable shea butter (beurre de karite in french) cost me $16.95 a few months ago. I love Bellapella products for this exact reason! 

So tonight I get to refill an empty lip balm container...

DISCLAIMER: The only flaw with this DIY (do-it-yourself) project is that the tube is (pardon the pun) "exit only"! Do not roll the tube out any further than you need because it don't go back in like those overpriced chemical laden thingys you all buy...

So to get the ball rolling, melt the shea butter on low low low, it will melt if you are not in a hurry. If you are in a hurry and ignore it, it will burn.

Patience, it dissapears eventually...

Once the butter has melted, take a teaspoon and slowly pour a quarter teaspoon at a time into the little tube and wait 5 minutes for the butter to cool. No I am not shitting you, a quarter teaspoon at a time!


On the first pour, no matter how much you pour in, the base will overflow, so you have to let it set and act as a sealant for the following pours. It does not hurt to put each layer in the freezer or out on the patio if you are currently living a Canadian winter!

Aside from wasting product, the other reason for the small pours is that all waxes have a pull factor when they cool, so you always get a whirlpool downward spiral in the middle like this! 

Small suck holes like this are okay but just filling the whole thing up will give you big air bubbles over a smooth surface instead of a solid lip balm stick. 

Funny thing happened, once I got one filled, suddenly there were 4 more empty ones on the counter to fill... I think I have a convert!


Even after filling all of them, there is lots left over to put on your hands, rub it all over wherever you need!

When you are all done with your rub down, you can even spill it back into the brick! When was the last time a beauty company sent you a sample of organic matter and said "oh, we over melted on your lip balm!"

So counting fast in my head, the amount I put in 4 lip balm tubes probably cost less than 50 cents (US or CAN, take your pick)

Once these tubes empty themselves, put them in the dishwasher for a couple cycles, all the extra residue and possible bacteria can get washed out this way.

If you are curious as to why lip balm is addictive, stop fast scrolling now... look at this lovely little tube of lip balm, it explains what it does not have (parabens) plus it even tells you the beneficial side effects from using it and how to use it... how thoughtful of them! After all, you are paying good money, they should tell you how you feel, save you the bother of thinking for yourself...

However, when I turn the tube once more to see the ingredients, my camera's 42x zoom lens starts to have some problems seeing clearly!

Only when I bring in the Hubble Telescope (aka my glasses, left eye) can I see what is written on the freaking little tube! 

As confusing as all of those ingredients may seem (and that is just touching the iceberg on the dangers of moisturizer) you only need to remember two simple rules that even your husband can remember!


Rule number 1.

If it contains alcohol of any type, the final side effect is that it dries your skin. No matter how smooth it feels going on, and even later in the day, IT IS GOING TO DRY YOUR SKIN. You do your own research on your own skin products, you will be horrified.

Rule number 2. 

If it contains a petrolium product of any type, the final side effect is that it dries your skin. No matter how smooth it feels going on, and even later in the day, IT IS GOING TO DRY YOUR SKIN. You do your own research on your own skin products, you will be horrified.

So, I just spent 20 minutes producing 4 organic lip balms for less than 50 cents... the real benefit is that they are not addictive, they are actually beneficial! 

Don't tell me you don't have time to live better and healthier! You don't have time make these 4 things that took me 20 minutes to make the healthy way? Would you really prefer to spend over $20 to buy something full of toxins? The choice is yours.

Sunday, 27 January 2013

Fettuccine parmesan cream scallops

 You could eat organic home made like this for FREE!!!

Well, not literally, but almost.

One of the side effects of trying to eat better and healthier meals with a struggling regard to portion control (I hate those words) I have found myself saving things that would have just gone into last Saturday's snack which would now be pulling on the buttons of my dress shirts. Other things I have been saving would have just gone into the trash.

For example, last weekend we had some marvelous Panko breaded scallops. The package came with 12 scallops and lets face it, we can eat! So normally I would have made all 12. However, trying to make better choices and it being January, it goes without saying that I don't need the extra caloric intake if you know what I mean. 

So the adventure begins when I had 4 leftover scallops, I tucked them in the freezer in a little container and figured I would find the right combo for this little treat... so now you see where I got the "free" scallops. What does one do with "free" scallops? One rolls them in a bit of flour and fries them in burnt butter!!!

This here is my other "free" ingredient. We poached cod in the oven with white wine and lemon juice on Wednesday. After the cod was plated, I drizzled off the remains in the pan to a couple of these cute little jars! I love these jars, so much better than plastic, you don't have to wait for the oil or juice to cool and you don't have any of those "plastic" issues with food we keep hearing about.

I am using these jars more and more. Keeping the drippings off of just about anything is a whole lot better for your health than using those "convenient" flavour packs and sauce bases that are full of salt and preservatives. You can keep things for a week in the fridge or throw it in the freezer for a couple months. Labelling is important for freezing, most stuff does not smell when frozen and that white wine clam juice could turn out to be chicken stock! Talk about dissapointment!

So today's 15 minute snack utilizes random stuff in the fridge:

2 fists full of home made fettuccine noodles, dried and frozen, boil for 6 minutes
6 oz leftover white wine and lemon poaching liquid
4 scallops thawed, if you are not dieting you could drag them in flour
A hand full of slightly wilted arugula that won't be good by bedtime, chopped
2 tablespoons grated Parmesan Reggiano

Oh and a couple ounces of my favourite secret ingredient...

As you wait for the water to boil for the pasta, fry the scallops in a bit of butter, 4 minutes on each side on med heat. Set aside on paper towel. Then add your poaching liquid to the sauce pan and bring to a slow boil. Reduce liquid by half or so, enough to wet your pasta but not drown it.

Drain the pasta, put it back in the pot and on it's burner which is turned off but still hot. If you have too much juice or if your pasta is a bit undercooked you can leave it set for a minute or two to work itself out. Add cream, a tablespoon at a time until its right for you. The arugula can be added now, it can handle a bit of heat. Lastly add parmesan and remove from burner, mix well, you will notice the parmesan has a bit of a thickening effect.

Voila! The whole thing took 15 minutes, which is less time than one of those package noodle and sauce thingys!

Bon app├ętit!