Day 4 of “90 Days of #Microstories”. Today’s title is “Reap what you sow.”
We all know coconut oil is brilliant in our food, but what about other everyday uses? Can you really use coconut oil throughout your day? The simple answer – yes! Once you start looking at the various uses of coconut oil, the possibilities are endless.
Sure, eating coconut oil makes you healthy, and health shines through our bodies, but what about some topical application? Not only is coconut oil a perfect body moisturizer, put a dollop in a shallow bowl and add brown sugar till you get a dry paste, then use as a scrub on your lips for a perfect exfoliation (and once you rinse your lips, follow up with a coat of coconut oil to lock in the moisture!).
I have a toddler, so there is always something sticky being ground into the leather couch or carpet. Rub in a bit of coconut oil, allow to soak into the fibers or grain, and then tease the sticky stuff out. Bonus? Coconut oil is brilliant on conditioning leather (but always test for colourfastness first).
Coconuts aren’t just for fruity rum drinks anymore! Try this for your next coffee, you’ll thank me: 1 cup of hot coffee, 1 tablespoon coconut oil, 1 tablespoon grass fed butter, and a pinch of sweetner of your choice. Pop in a blender, blend on high till frothy like a latte. Drink, and enjoy the most luxurious, silky coffee you’ve ever tasted, which will keep your energy levels up all morning!
We used coconut oil to treat minor diaper rash or abrasions to absolute success – I swear by a dot of coconut oil to keep the baby’s skin happy and healthy!
For those of you with summer colds, but who hate Vapo-rub and that awful smell, try a bit of coconut oil with a few drops of tea tree oil and rosemary oil. Rub into the chest, and let the vapors unblock that nose!
If you’ve got some amazing uses for coconut oil, let me know in the comments!
Day 3 of “90 Days of #Microstories”, entitled “Mightier than the sword”.
You may have heard the latest health news, which is that once-villified fat is actually coming back into the nutritional fold. But often people don’t know good fat from bad, or how to get in a great amount of fat without a massive meal. Fat bombs to the rescue! I have one in the early afternoon as a pick me up, and they are amazing – the fat sates my hunger pangs, and the protein releases energy slowly, so I don’t have a ‘crash and burn’ feeling like after having a carb-loaded snack. These are super easy to make, and taste like chilled peanut butter cups (yum)!
Hella Easy Choco Nut Fat Bombs
1 Cup of Coconpure virgin coconut oil
¼ Cup of MyProtein Peanut Butter
¼ cup of MyProtein cashew butter
1/2 Cup of grass-fed butter
Squirt of organic honey (most people use stevia, but I don’t like the taste)
½ cup of unsweetened cocoa powder
The recipe could not be more simple. Pop everything in a pot, and stir over low heat till fully incorporated. I have one of those neat appliances that do the mixing for you, but a pot and spoon will work just as well. When fully mixed (you’ll notice a lovely ‘gloss’ to the mixture), pour into moulds of your choice. You can pour it into a bar shape, or cupcakes with liners, or my fave, a silicone ice cube tray – the tray is very easy to dislodge, and is a perfect bite-sized portion. Chill for about 1 hour, and then dislodge and put in a freezer bag in the freezer. Simply remove and bite every time you want a pick me up without a load of carbs or sugar!
Check out tomorrow’s ‘5 Uses for Coconut Oil You Maybe Hadn’t Thought About Before, But You Should Be Doing Right Now’. I may shorten the name by tomorrow.
Day 2 of “90 Days of #Microstories”. This one is called Pub Life. Enjoy.
As many of you know, I’ve been trying to get more healthy, and one of the things I’ve noticed is a lack of healthy fats in my diet. These are generally remedied by nut butters and oils, but the high street stores are a minefield of high-sugar concoctions with a bunch of fillers and binders – no thanks. When MyProtein asked if I’d like to sample some of their butters and oils, I jumped on it!
The first thing I sampled was the coconut oil, and MyProtein’s Coconpure did not disappoint. The first thing I noticed was the packaging; while many grocery stores offer coconut oil, it’s often in a long-necked bottle, meaning you have to melt the oil just to get it out, thus damaging the delicate oil through multiple heatings and coolings. Coconpure has a wide mouth, making it easy to measure out exactly what you need with no waste.
The next thing is the oil itself. It’s not an ‘oil’ in the traditional sense of the word, it’s more like a silky yet crumbly mousse, but with the slightest of warmth (even your own body heat), and it melts into a beautifully smooth liquid. The smell is incredibly pure, and you can taste test straight from the tub (and I heartily recommend that you do!). Out of this world flavour. And did you know, coconut oil isn’t just for eating? Check out my post on Wednesday for five uses for coconut oil you may have not previously considered.
Up next is the peanut butter. Now, I’m an American by birth, so peanut butter is a staple in my childhood. PB&J was a daily lunch during the summer (Jelly, although that’s US jelly, which is jam, not UK jelly, which is gelatin…but I digress). So I was very happy to have a nice big tub of peanut butter in the house once again. MyProtein Peanut Butter is crunchy, with a great flavour profile, but if you’re a long-time store bought peanut butter fan, the taste will be a bit odd to you. The reason is simple – you’ve been eating jars full of sugar calling themselves peanut butter. This stuff just tastes of peanuts. Once your taste buds make the transition, they will thank you. Really great stuff, although I do recommend you give it a good stir before each use, just to make sure the oils are evenly distributed.
And finally, the cashew butter. I always feel a bit guilty eating cashew butter, as I was raised to believe it was a ‘naughty’ butter, full of fat, and it’s true…sort of. Per 100 grams of MyProtein’s Cashew Butter there is 48.2 grams of monounsaturated fat. And what is monounsaturated fat? According to the American Heart Association:
“Monounsaturated fats can have a beneficial effect on your health when eaten in moderation and when used to replace saturated fats or trans fats. Monounsaturated fats can help reduce bad cholesterol levels in your blood and lower your risk of heart disease and stroke. They also provide nutrients to help develop and maintain your body’s cells. Monounsaturated fats are also typically high in vitamin E, an antioxidant vitamin most Americans need more of.”
So yes, it is fatty, because some fats are good for you, so you should eat them! And double bonus, cashew butter tastes amazing, and is perfect for everything from a dipper for apple slices to a delicious cookie recipe I’ll be sharing on Thursday, as well as a super-yummy ‘fat bomb’ recipe tomorrow.
Check in the rest of the week for all the buttery, oily goodness!
The products provided were gratis, but the opinions are 100% my own. See my PR page for more details.
A few weeks ago I was approached by a new app called Dayre, seeing if I’d like to do a writing challenge for the next three months. I was already planning on leaving facebook, so I knew I wouldn’t have to spread my time, but the fact is, I’m sort of bored with social media. Twitter is interesting but broad in scope, and Diaspora* is cool and eclectic and very small, but neither of them are perfect platforms. Pinterest and Instagram are…well, Pinterest is still hella boring to me, and Instagram is great for on-the-go pictures, but that’s about it. And besides, I’ve been blogging for over 12 years now – the shine is off the apple, folks. So, I set myself a challenge.
The Dayre mobile blogging app allows for video and photos, just like Instagram, but like twitter, it has a character cap of 500 – you can be more verbose, but you still have to have tight language. It also has stickers and quotes and a bunch of other silly functions, but I’m focusing on the image + text thing for right now.
I decided that I would write one micro story per day, with a photo. The photos are all taken by me, either on my camera, phone, or ipad, and the story would be 500 characters or less. Not 500 words. 500 characters. That includes not only punctuation and spaces, but the bloody #microstories hashtag! And while a picture is worth 1000 words, I’d still need to be really, really tight with my language (somewhat difficult for the normally verbose me). Every day I’ll post a link to the Dayre story for that day (or the previous day if I get lagging), and if you find you like the app, feel free to sign up and follow me at http://dayre.me/sheawong. I should note, these are all works of fiction inspired by whatever the photo brings up in me – none of these are based on my life, and certainly not based on anyone who may feature in the photo! (don’t want anyone getting the wrong idea as it’s a buddy of mine in the first story photo). J
So, for the first story in a set of (hopefully) 90 #microstories, I present “Women’s Work”.
So I’ve decided to quit facebook full stop. I had essentially done a mass unfriend (with the exception of family) about a year ago, and to this day feel it was the best thing I could have done. Whatever it was designed to be, facebook became a vortex of tumblr meme castoffs and email forwards from your weird racist uncle that you have to fact-check, explain, and then kill yourself when they ignore. Even though I’m far more active on twitter, Instagram, tumblr, and am reconnecting with Diaspora (and newly connecting with Dayre, and loving it), I held on to facebook for some inane reason. It always just felt like I had to have it, rather than wanted to have it. Hell, I only got it initially because my then boyfriend was an ocean away and it was easy to quickly connect with him. Well, he’s now my husband and usually within 20 feet of me, so…yeah. Not needed. And of course, shit like this doesn’t help: So like I said, I’m out. If you are interested, you can download ALLLLL your data (photos, vids, etc) from facebook in their general settings, and then delete. If you feel like deletion is a bit too extreme you can always go on a hiatus, but for me, this is just easier. Feel free to catch me here, or a bunch of other networks (find a huge list of them here) – but not facebook. And when the various networks start acting stupid as well, I’ll drop them. I’ll have this as the final post for a few weeks, as a placeholder if you like, but in the end of July, it all comes down. Peace out, you crazy cats and kittens! Hope to see you all on other networks.
I was in the garden with the kid when I saw this little bee glide over to one of the newly-opened poppies on my ‘Day of the Triffids’ plant and in my head, I narrated him thanking his little bee stars for the greatest bee day of his bee life, because this little guy, for a full 5 minutes, was positively swimming in pollen. He was like a pig in mud, trying to coat every surface of his body with the bright particles. It was hilarious to watch.
As a kid, I was terrified of bees. I was one of those run/screamers that you see on those ‘Funniest Home Video’ shows, dropping everything to sprint away from an insect they logically know can do nothing more than give them a sore spot on their skin. (Note, I’m not allergic to bees – if I was, fair play. But this is just me being afraid). But I remember when the kid was born, and the bees came back in the spring, he was just a few months old when we were out and a bee came near, and without thinking I reached out and gently shoo-ed it away from my child’s face. My fear of something was great. My love for someone was greater. That’s the way life is.
Anyway, the bee was cute, is all.
So, this is neat. I’m in the ‘Women in the Community’ category for my work in knocking out mental health stigma. Check it out here!