Thursday, January 27, 2011
Snow, Cranberries, and Shampoo
So, I guess it was our turn for a big snow. Miraculously, throughout these past few storms that have pummeled the east coast, our area of Maryland got away with only a skiff of snow. But last night we totally got dumped on! I'd say we got between 4-6". In some places the drifts are a foot deep. Snowmen, here we come!
In a week from now, I'm going to be teaching a group of women how to can cranberry sauce! I'm really excited. It's a group of ladies from my church and they all want to learn how to can. I just love being able to share my knowledge and love of cooking and preserving food. I just got a new water bath canner for Christmas from my in-laws (I've been using my humongous pressure canner this whole time.), so I am really thrilled to try it out for the first time. It's my first time canning my own cranberry sauce too. I've got a big bag of cranberries in the freezer and my mouth is already watering for that whole berry sauce. It's so simple - simpler than jam even because no pectin is required. Just cranberries, sugar, and water. I might try the jellied cranberry sauce too which requires an extra step of pureeing everything in a food processor. I hope it turns out! I'll take pictures and let you know.
Oh, and I have to tell you about a new homemade shampoo I'm trying out from a friend. Here's the recipe:
1/4 cup Dr. Bronner's castille soap (I'm using the Almond kind because I love the smell)
1/4 cup distilled water
1 tsp. grapeseed or jojoba oil (optional - for dry or curly hair)
Pour everything into a recycled shampoo bottle. Shake before using.
That's it! I tripled the recipe to fill up my shampoo bottle. However, I should have only added 1/2 or 1 tsp. of the oil total. I've got 2 tsp. in there now. I'd say my hair is on the normal to oily side, so the extra oil isn't really needed. Also, I found that since it's so runny - it's essentially the consistancy of water, instead of pouring some into my hand, I just use the bottle to squirt it on my head where it needs to go. It soaps up great!
Just a note: when using homemade shampoos, how your hair will feel after washing will be a lot different from using those regular store-bought shampoos. It takes some getting used to, but after awhile you won't even notice. Store-bought shampoos have a lot of additives, but homemade shampoos are just clean and simple. I hope you give it a try! And at $8.99 for a large bottle of Dr. Bronner's, 99 cents for distilled water and $5 for the grapeseed oil, I have the materials to make a whole lot of shampoo really inexpensively. Woohoo!
Also, I made a discovery on accident. I had been using this interesting citrus organic shampoo. It didn't soap up a lot, but it seemed to clean my hair pretty well. I had to use a lot of it, though, as my hair's on the thick side. Well, after I ran out I gave in and bought an old favorite shampoo of mine - Shikai Highlighting Henna Shampoo. After using it just once my hair was greasy and oily very quickly and I had to wash my hair every other day instead of the 3-4 days using the organic shampoo. I remember hearing something about sulfates not being good for your hair. So, I looked on my organic shampoo bottle and it said Sulfate Free. I looked on the Shikai bottle and one of the main ingredients was a sulfate. I'm not a chemist, but I think there's something about the sulfates that strips your hair of its natural oils and balance. All along the organic shampoo had helped my hair recover its balance and I hadn't even known it! I'm hoping my new shampoo recipe will help my hair get back to its natural self. :-)