How To Brush Puppy Teeth

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Meet Eloise! Ello for short; rhymes with jello. She just lost her last baby tooth!

Our pets give us so much love. They are there to greet us at the door and snuggle us when we are not feeling well. They are there no matter what. One way I can give them love back is by caring for their health. One way I do that is by taking care of their teeth.

Teeth brushing is super important to your pet’s health. Teaching them to like it can be a challenge for some pets. The way I’ve always done it has worked for me, so I’d thought I’d share it with you. You can check out the video here (or scroll down to the bottom to see the video!) and if you don’t want to watch it…read on!

I’ve never liked using commercial “pet” tooth paste. The ingredients in all the ones I’ve looked into wasn’t anything I wanted my pets to ingest. So I looked into ingredients that I was okay allowing my pets to eat, because let’s be real, our pets don’t know how to spit! Hahahahaha.

I offer my cats coconut oil in a dish. I leave it next to their water and I’ve found over the years that their teeth are really nice and a bonus to that was the amount of hairballs came almost to a stop and what I mean by that is I was cleaning at least one a day! Now it’s more like one a month. When you care for as many felines as I do, it was a lot of daily icky hairball cleaning. And don’t worry…none of my cats eat up the whole bowl of coconut oil! They will take a few licks and walk away.

My dogs get coconut oil after their daily meals. Bonus, their coats look better and itching has stopped. I do not leave a bowl of it out like I do for the kitties. They’d eat the whole amount in a sitting and I don’t need to tell you the mess on the other end if I did!

From reading, I’m sure you can gather that it was coconut oil that I discovered would make an excellent toothpaste; it’s edible and good for them to boot. Their breaths after brushing are really nice too!

You can use coconut oil straight. I scoop out about two tablespoons of coconut oil into a small glass jar and I will dip the toothbrush into it. My pets come running when I do this! It is a “treat” after all. Another way I make pet “teeth-paste” (Never understood why we used the word “tooth paste” when we brush more than one tooth…um well hopefully we do!)…back to another way I make paste, is by mixing diatomaceous earth in with the coconut oil. It helps to solidify it and diatomaceous earth is also good for our pets. PLEASE MAKE SURE the diatomaceous earth you buy is NOT for pools. It must be edible. And to make sure of this, buy it from a health food source. I buy mine online through Swanson Vitamins; you can check out the link here, (I’m not an affiliate with S.V. They don’t do that…I wish they did. I talk about them all the time! Ha!) You can look up the benefits of diatomaceous earth. It helps with fleas too! Yay.

Making it fun is the most important thing, because if they are scared/timid, it makes teeth brushing unpleasant for both you and your furry friend…No one wants to reenact a WWF headlock move! So basically what I do is I put the coconut oil on the toothbrush and let the dog lick it and they might chew on the bristles. I allow them to set the pace and play with the bristles and become familiar with the feeling. If I start brushing teeth on a pet that has never had their teeth brushed and coconut oil isn’t enticing them to give it a try, I will try other things on the brush to get them to “play”. Peanut butter is a good one. I’ve never met a dog that didn’t like peanut butter. Obviously it isn’t something you want to use regularly…just to get them to like having a tooth brush in their mouth is the key. You can switch them to coconut oil later. For the kitties, you can try putting their wet food on it, cream, or juice from tuna to get them started. I’ve found over the years my cats willingness to eat coconut oil keeps their teeth clean without having to brush them. I do check their teeth periodically and have noticed their teeth are beautiful without having them scraped. I’m not a fan of taking my pets to the vet to have their teeth done. I’ve lost a pet being put under anesthesia. Caring for their teeth is not only a cost saving, but a life-saving too.

Many things go wrong in a pet’s health by having bad teeth and gums. Check them weekly if you don’t brush them. Give coconut oil a try. I use organic unfiltered cold pressed. You can find it at Swanson Vitamins, check out the link here. I’ve bought it at Costco and Target too! And if you caught that I give the dogs the coconut oil after their meals, I’ve found it helps any food residue to slip away!

That’s basically it. I hope this helps you to help your pet stay healthy. A healthy mouth is a healthy pet!

The furry gang here At Koko’s Place and I thank YOU for reading!

Have a happy tail-wagging day!

Koko

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Ninja Coffee Bar with Glass Carafe

I had a Cuisinart Coffee maker I had been using for almost three years. The review on that can be found here . I really liked that coffee maker. A lot! At almost three years, the machine itself started leaking water. The coffee maker still worked, but the side where it made hot water sprung a leak. I tried taking it apart to see where it was coming from and I found the parts I would need just wasn’t worth it to fix. Enter the Ninja Coffee Bar with Glass Carafe!

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This is the Ninja Coffee Bar with Glass Carafe!

I looked at a few dozen types of coffee pot machines and after careful thought, I decided on this Ninja. It didn’t hurt that it was on sale at Target! I believe I picked it up for less than half the price. Winning! 🙂

Ninja’s words…”Ninja has a patent-pending brewing technology designed to deliver better, richer- tasting coffee with variable richness levels that are never bitter. Only the Ninja Coffee Bar® brewer has Thermal Flavor Extraction, which truly unlocks the full flavor potential of your coffee using automated controls for Temperature Calibration, Pre-infusion & Coffee Saturation.”

The settings brews four types of coffee; classic, rich, over-ice, specialty. I have used them all. It’s stepped up my coffee game! Classic Brew is what I’d call a regular brew, a nice perfectly brewed coffee. I like this setting when I drink it black. The Rich Brew is a bolder flavor. And by bold I don’t mean bitter. Just a nice stronger flavor. If you use milks or creams, I find you don’t lose out on that coffee flavor. Using the Over Ice Brew makes the coffee even richer so as not to lose any coffee flavor when pouring over ice. No watered down taste! The Specialty Brew is even more concentrated coffee, making the coffee flavor just right when making any type of “fancy” concoctions. It comes with a recipe booklet too. Tweaking the recipes to my tastes is a lot of fun. WE have coffee bar nights where we pick a recipe to try! A great “party” theme.

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 Their trademarked Ninja Easy Frother™ is such a simple design that does the job very well! I’ve had other frothers, yet there’s something about this one that sets it apart. To me, it froths the milk much faster and the consistency of the froth is much thicker.

This coffee pot doesn’t have a filter. It wasn’t a deal breaker for me as I use filtered water anyway, though I  had to “get over” not having my coffee double filtered, hahaha! As it turns out, it’s good in the way that I don’t have to remember to change the filter (and the cost savings of buying them) and have to deal with another compartment to keep clean. And speaking of keeping it clean, this pot is very easy to clean. The machine comes apart easily. Nothing tricky about it. Seriously easy!

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The reservoir is a neat feature. Ninja’s Auto-iQ™ One Touch Intelligence feature sends out the right amount of water you need depending on what size you want. Super cool! I keep it full of filtered water, so making a cup, half a pot, or full pot is quick and easy. You can remove the water container to fill it or you can pour water into it from another pitcher or other vessel (which is what I do most of the time).

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See that silver round piece? It flips down and that is where you set your cup for that single serving cup. Flipping it back up allows you to make a travel sized mug full of coffee, or of course, a half pot or full pot.

What I like about this feature is you can make that single serving or travel mug size without using those “pods”. I have yet to meet a pod that made a decent cup of coffee or tea for that matter. By the way… I’ve used this machine to make yerba mate tea! It does a fantastic job at brewing it just right! How does it know? 😉

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My only “con” about this set up…the mouth of the carafe is small. You can’t fit your hand inside to clean it. So, you need a bottle brush or something like that to clean it effectively. This is not a complete deal breaker, however, if I were looking at two coffee makers, both being equal, but one had the traditional carafe opening, I would buy the wider opening. Ninja does sell a soft sponge brush for $5.95. See the video I made below to so see how I clean my carafe! 

Continue reading

How To Collect Seeds-Green Onions!

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I love green onions! I toss them in almost everything; soups, salads, and even in my sandwiches. I love them fresh, and sautéed in any oil or butter, and grilled!

You’ve seen how I propagate them in my window sill here…but I also grow them in my garden. I collect the seeds so that I can do it all over again…why? Because I love green onions!

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You can re-grow green onions this way…Cut off most of the green tops and plant the white part and roots (of course) in good soil. In a few days you will see it start to grow. What “green” you see here is about 2-3 days of growth. They grow fast. They love a sunny window sill and gentle watering.

If you’ve ever grown green onions and let them bolt, then you already know the flowers are so pretty! Another plus is the bees like them too! So I always let a good amount of my green onions bloom to show some love to the bees! They work so hard and this is the least I can do for them!

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Flowers + Bees—Bees + Flowers! The wonders in nature never cease to amaze me. I am humbled each time I step outside to see the beauty of it all.

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Mint in the background. I love to brush my hand along the mint. Such a refreshing fragrance! Inhale deeply and smile. Give it a try!

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Half of this garden bed I’ve allowed to “bolt” (a fancy way of saying letting the plant “flower” so you can harvest the seeds off it). After the green onion flowers, I leave the flowers on the plant to dry. It is in each little blossom where the onion seeds are found. How cool is mother nature?!

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After the blossoms dry, I will either store the “whole” head or take them apart like you see here. Just make sure the blossoms are totally dry so you don’t get any mold growth.

You can “re-grow” green onions by putting the bottom parts in water or soil and if you grow them outdoors, you can allow a few to bloom flowers and then collect their seeds and then plant the seeds! Amazing right?! And simple as well! I love that.

I harvest the green onion by snipping them with scissors. Even the plants that are bolting; I will snip the long green stems (NOT the stems with flowers on them). If I let the plant grow too much and the greens are thicker, I make a soup with the greens, much like you would do with leeks. I’ve also grilled them. Rarely anything goes to waste in the garden and really if I don’t eat everything, it all gets composted back in!

Did you know?

Green onions are full of vitamin K and C.

Green onions are good for your eyes. With vitamin A and carotenoids (cancer fighting properties) and both Zeaxanthin and Lutein, working together to keep the eyes healthy!

One last picture…..

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A nice surprise: If you already follow me on instagram, you’ve already seen this little guy! (Eastern milk snake). I found him on one of my walks along a trail I mowed on the back half of my property. What a cutie right?

Green onions are one of the easiest plants to grow. I hope you give this plant a try. If you’ve thought you didn’t have a “green thumb”, this plant will give you hope! Collect the seeds and you will never have to buy them again!

Like it, share it! With love and peace, Koko 🙂

Yoga Ball Chair For Health

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My second ball. A new ball about every 10-ish years. Not bad.

Switching out a “chair” for a yoga ball! What?! Yep, that’s exactly what I did. I use a yoga ball daily for not only exercise but to “sit” on!

I’m always looking for ways to be kinder to my body and I’m always looking for ways to exercise while not “exercising” if that makes sense. What I mean is I try to get in exercise wherever I can. For instance while brushing my teeth I do leg lifts or wall squats.

Since I do a lot of computer work I wondered if I could work out my abs, legs, and back by sitting on a yoga ball. One thing I noticed right off the bat is my back feeling really good. No more achy feeling. My body didn’t feel tired and I felt more alert.

I experimented by moving my legs forward and back and wiggle side to side; both moves engaged my abs. I was onto something! Both fun and beneficial! I like that! Also, it gave me a great excuse to get rid of my highly uncomfortable chair! (In my forever quest for less stuff, that was another plus.)

I also noticed things like my back “self-adjusting”. And let me tell you… feels amazing!

So this is what I do: Sit on the yoga ball. My feet are flat for support. My legs are about shoulder width apart (I adjust feet positions for a change-up). There’s no rhyme or reason to any of my movements. The key for me is to not be still. I might tap my toes up and down or lift the heels of my feet up and down. I will wiggle side to side, rotate my hips around, move my legs forward and back.

If you give this a try, you can experiment with moves. I find it fun and anything to keep the blood moving is good in my book.

What sitting on a yoga ball does for me:

  • Reminds me to sit tall.
  • Reminds me to pull my tummy in. (Very important.) Always working the core!
  • Helps to adjust/align my spine. I’m always striving for ways to keep my back/spine healthy.
  • Relieves my back pain. I don’t have that nagging pain in my lower back when I’m done sitting anymore. I get up… and back feels great!
  • My abs feel stronger.
  • My low back feels stronger.
  • I’ve always had good posture, but the ball makes sure I do!
  • Keeping my body in motion is important to me, and this does just that!
  • I prefer sitting on a yoga ball now to a standard “office” chair. Or really any chair for that matter. I guess you can say it’s more comfortable.
  • No tailbone pain. I cracked mine a few years back. Owie. Long story…
  • My hips feel stronger. I don’t get that painful “pop” in them as often as I did. And really as I type this now, I can’t remember the last time that happened.
  • If you know me, you know I like doing things that have more than one benefit. If I must sit (computer work) then I want to exercise!
  • Not using a standard chair, I can stretch my arms behind me periodically.
  • My neck and shoulders are more relaxed and I feel the tension is much, much better.
  • Even though I am moving on a yoga ball, I still stand by my “standing up” every 15-20 minutes thing I do. I will do jumping jacks, squats, or even sit-ups and push-ups using the yoga ball. Check out Dr. Mercola’s post here on sitting too long.
  • I am more awake/alert. And that’s important especially if I’m doing research on a topic I find boring.
  • And most of all, it makes me happy!
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See how-to on lamp and desk.

Happy is good! We all have challenges, constant obstacles that get us down, but it’s up to us to get up, challenge those challenges and push those obstacles out-of-the-way. Sometimes as I work, a sad thought will creep into my mind and I know I can’t do a thing about that sad thought…I start bouncing on the yoga ball, almost as if I’m on a trampoline, and well, the sad is still there, but deeper in the back of my mind. In the midst of bouncing, the endorphins go up and I can actually find my smile again.

So if challenges and obstacles are pushing at you…push back!

Hugs to all my Awesomenesses!

Peace, Koko ❤

Review Cuisinart Coffee Maker

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This is the same machine, 2 years later. Still looks and preforms like new!

Remember when I reviewed this Cuisinart’s Cuisinart Coffee Plus 12-cup Programmable Coffeemaker plus Hot Water System coffee pot? Here I am re-reviewing it.

It’s still awesome! 2 years and going strong! Insert cheers here***

This is the one appliance that is used daily in my household. The first thing I do when I step into the kitchen is turn on the hot water feature. (Pets are cared for first thing. I use it to warm their food.)

I can say that this machine is quite the workhorse as daily pots of coffee are made and many, many cups of tea. The hot water feature is used not only for teas and cocoa, I use it to make oatmeal and as i’ve said, heat my pets food.

Everything I’ve done 2 years ago with this machine, I still do. I wipe the machine down with a damp cloth (inside and out) regularly. I used white vinegar to clean the inside of the machine about one-two times a month and the filters get changed about every three-four months. I feel I can stretch the filter changes as I use already filtered water. I don’t have “off/funny” tastes with this unit. I’ve had people ask if the tea tastes like coffee. I can honestly say, I don’t have an issue with that. My tea tastes like tea! 🙂

This machine is so useful when friends are over. They go to the hanging cups and help themselves. We can sit at the breakfast bar and chat and sip and make more beverages to our hearts content!

Cuisinart still sells this unit. Don’t hesitate to buy it. It was a smart purchase, I mean…(I thank Santa Claus for leaving this amazing machine under the tree those years ago!)

Hope you enjoyed the review and it was helpful to you. Whatever you do in your day, make time to have a cup of something. Whether you are a coffee, tea, cocoa drinker, taking a moment for yourself or with someone you care about and enjoy a cup is a wonderful way to start your day. I take mine out onto the deck (weather permitting) and even if it’s for five minutes, I take time to breathe in the clean air and sip my drink…starts my day happy.

Take five minutes for YOU. Breathe, sip your drink, and let the happiness fill you!

Be well Friends. Peace, Koko

How To Store Seeds

There are many ways to store seeds. You can use plastic zip baggies, jars, small paper bags, tiny boxes (ie. jewelry boxes). Below is one of the ways I store them.

Allowing a few cilantro plants to bolt.

Here, I’ve allowed a few cilantro plants to bolt.

Collecting cilantro seeds.

Collecting cilantro seeds. I like to use a white paper towel so I can see the seeds. As for seeds like my oak leaf lettuce; being white/light grey, I will sometimes use brown paper towels. Clear large zip bags work great too for light colored seeds, well, for any seeds for that matter… 😉

One way I store them is making “paper towel” envelopes.

Cut a paper towel to size. This one was a "select a size" type paper towel and I cut it in half.

Cut a paper towel to size. This one was a “select a size” type paper towel and I cut it in half. (Oh and the seeds you see here in this photo happens to be onion seeds.)

After putting a a bit of seeds in the center...I eyeball folding the paper in three. I a third of the paper over the seeds then the other third over that.

After putting a bit of the seeds in the center…I eyeball, folding the paper in three. A third of the paper over the seeds, then the other third over that.

Then I fold that in thirds. Folding the bottom third towards the middle then the top third I make a triangle...

Then, again in thirds. I fold the bottom third towards the middle (over the seeds). The top third I make a triangle…

See a triangel? :)

See the triangle 🙂

I then tuck the triangle into the slot made from folding the paper in thirds.

From here I just tuck the triangle into the slot made from folding the paper in thirds.

When planting the seeds I will plant the paper towel too. Why not compost it? 🙂

Label the packet. Don't forget the date too!

Label the packet. Don’t forget the date too!

There you go, one way to store seeds. As I said before, there are many ways to store seeds. Why I especially like this method of seed storing is when I do plant them, I’ve pre-measured out the  perfect amount of seeds. I take a “packet” and all the seeds in “said” packet get planted. No fuss.

So allow a plant or two to bolt and collect the seeds. It’s so satisfying to know year after year the plants you grow are from seeds you’ve collected. It’s also nice to save money not having to buy more seed.

Tip: Only collect seeds from plants that you know taste good and grow well. If you allow a “poorly” producing plant to bolt and collect seed from that, you may be growing more poorly producing plants. So allow the best looking plant to bolt and collect from that one.

Tip: Make sure before you harvest the seeds the plant has finished blooming and has dried. I usually leave the plant alone until it’s dead. However it is difficult to control the weather and if you have especially strong winds, you may loose your seeds; such as lettuce seeds as the seeds have the same type of fuzzy tops like a dandelion and that fuzzy head will catch the wind and fly away! You can cut the plant and dry them indoors. As I type this, my bolted lettuce is drying on hooks above my kitchen sink.

Tip: I don’t worry too much about getting each seed totally “clean”. The fuzz or bits of dried stem won’t interfere with germination.

Eat well, be well. It’s up to you to take care of your health. Eating organic and non-GMO foods are great ways to a more healthful YOU! You’d be surprised how small changes you make can add up to huge benefits later on.

Cheers, Koko

Thank you for reading. I’d love to hear your comments. Do you have a favorite way to store seeds?

Fitness Challenge Push-ups

Fitness needs to be fun. You are more apt to stick with something if it’s fun. If it’s not fun, at least find something about it that motivates you!

I was chatting with a fellow blogger, Matt from https://techchucker.wordpress.com about my son and I challenging each other to a push-up contest. He had to do double what I did. We were playing video games that night and every time he’d “die” or do a bad move, we’d have to drop and do push-ups. During about 2 hours of game play I did 300 push-ups which my son happily did 600. We both still had more push-ups in us, but decided we might regret the soreness the next day! Surprisingly we both weren’t that sore. Though on day 2 we could feel it in the pecs! It was a fun challenge I won’t forget.

Matt and I decided to challenge each other to do push-ups! The rules are really relaxed…just do as many as you can in a day. Now both of us made a base line video to kick off the challenge. He did a whopping 50 in one shot. I got in 25. You can see his here. And mine below.

The challenge started on June 17, 2015. It’s to go for 20 days straight. I started that day (6-17) doing 85 push-ups (Not on my knees but “military” style or otherwise known as “guy” push-ups) with reps of 10-15. I continued with doing 85 on the 18th and 19th. On 6-20 I had to switch up and do incline push-ups, using a chair as my incline, gripping the sides so my hands/wrist placement can be altered. As I mentioned on the video I am trying to heal a bad injury to my left elbow. The pain was getting pretty bad that I couldn’t sleep on day 3. This ulnar collateral ligament (UCL) injury is a long time healing process. The elbow also dislocated too. In the beginning the injury was so bad I couldn’t move it and for almost 2 weeks I couldn’t really use the arm. I’ve actually come a long way. I have full use of it, but in certain positions it will remind me very quickly that it isn’t 100%. I know what you are thinking…, “Then why the heck are you doing push-ups?” Believe me I’ve asked myself the same question. The short and simple; I was challenged! More so, I love the fun it brings.

The new incline chair push-ups: side grip did wonders for my elbow (as well as for my neck and traps. Another injury I won’t bore you with). No intense pain or outward swelling. I really wanted to do this challenge justice for the sake of the challenge, but I also had to take care of my elbow. On 6-20 I did 180 push-ups with new grip doing reps of 20-40.

On 6-21 I finished the day with 260 incline chair push-ups: side grip

I know my elbow isn’t happy and it has started to dislocate a couple of times on me, even with that, and some shooting pain before I started the different position, so far, it’s been worth it. The incline isn’t agitating my neck and traps too badly either. I’m already noticing a difference in my body and that is what it’s all about. Shocking muscles! If you keep shocking your body to do different things, amazing things happen. I’m excited to see how I feel and how I look on day 20!

Come on join us. You’re already a winner! There’s no pressure, so just have fun with it. Challenge yourself; do as many as you can in a day!

Follow me on twitter as I will be posting my push-up numbers using the tag #PushUpChallenge

I believe in you! Come on let’s spread the good energy!

Thank you for supporting me with your kind words, your follows, and shares! My followers are the best. I really mean that!

Monday’s around the corner, make it awesome!`

Best, Koko

Butter: Homemade butter: How to…

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I’m not gonna lie; I kinda felt like a magician. Just for a moment. It was so cool…I mean after all, I MADE BUTTER! How awesome is that? I’ve never made butter before. I don’t know why. Maybe because I was afraid. Perhaps I thought it would be too hard. And worse, maybe, I’d fail at it. There was always an excuse; I will do it on the weekend, next week, after… I decided no more saying later…It was time.  What I found out…Making butter is easier than I thought! You know how you felt after knowing how a trick was done? Almost like the “magic” had gone out of it…well, this is NOT the case! The magic was still there. I knew how the trick was done and it’s was still incredible! “I MADE BUTTER!”

This is how I did it…

I used a 1/2 quart–(a pint) or (2 cups) of whipping cream. Bought from the store. (Next time I will make this using the thick cream at the top of my raw milk.)

Pour the entire 1/2 quart of heavy whipping cream into mixing bowl. Using the whisk attachment (kitchenAid) I started out at medium speed and gradually increased the speed so as to not splash milk everywhere!

It will seem like you are whipping forever! Your whipping cream will start to become beautifully “whipped” cream and then from whipped cream to small bits of…well like the picture you see below.

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The beautifully creamy whipped cream is looking rather grainy! 😛

Then you will need to change your attachment to the paddle attachment. And continue whipping.

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Looking a bit more like cottage cheese!

You will start to see liquid forming. That is buttermilk! Abracadabra, more magic! 😀 With this buttermilk you can drink it, add it to your pancake batter or biscuit recipes. There are many recipes that call for buttermilk. (My pets love it too!)

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More of the buttermilk is released.

Keep whipping to get as much buttermilk out as possible.

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Even more buttermilk, YUM!

You will have a good idea when to stop whipping.  The butter will clump together. Scoop out all the butter solids and give it a good squeeze to release any buttermilk trapped between the folds. You can squeeze with bare hand or put the solids into cheesecloth and squeeze.

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Pretty butter!

Next, I poured out the buttermilk into a glass jar and returned the butter to the mixing bowl. I added ice water and continued to squeeze the butter, thus washing it. (This washing method helps to keep the butter from spoiling.) I repeated until the water ran clear. The ice bath helps to keep the butter a solid.

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Giving butter an ice bath!

After the water is clear, empty out all the water, dry bowl or put the butter into a dry dish…this is where you can salt and “season” the butter to your desired taste.  Garlic butter and chives! Honey butter! Possibilities are endless. For this butter I just salted it with Himalayan salt. I sprinkled it on and used a spoon I had set in ice water to help keep the butter from melting.

This will save for a week in the refrigerator and about six months in the freezer.

Shape the butter and enjoy!

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And there you have it…butter! Wah-lah!

Some fun facts:

Buttermilk has fewer calories and fat than regular milk.

Buttermilk is soothing to the stomach.

Buttermilk is soothing to the skin and makes a fabulous face mask! (Use 1 teaspoon of french clay to 1-2 tablespoons of buttermilk.  Mix and apply on face. 10 minutes or so, rinse and pat dry. Follow up with your favorite moisturizer. If you don’t have french clay (you can use most facial clays), or use ground oatmeal.)

Buttermilk has many beneficial nutrients and probiotics.

Butter made from grass-fed cows has high amounts of CLA (conjugated linoleic acid)–basically a beneficial fatty acid that helps the body protect against some forms of cancer!

Did you know it’s the beta carotene in butter that gives it the yellow color? And by using milk from grass-fed cows depending on what they are grazing on, the color of the butter can change! Pretty neat!

Butter made from grass-fed milk has a high content of vitamin K2 which is incredibly important for your heart. It De-calcifies your arteries!  Amazing…kinda like magic. Looks like I will be picking up an extra gallon of raw milk in my weekly visits to the farm. Did I mention I own part of a cow?!

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I hope this tutorial gets you excited to make magic!  Have you made butter before? I’d love to hear from you and how you seasoned yours.

Please like, follow and share…your support means the world to me!

Here’s to you finding magic in the simple things around you. Have a beautiful day everyone. Hugs, Koko 😀

Shoulder Exercises (Tip 11)

Are we sitting?  No problem.  Reading perhaps? On the computer? Watching television? Listening to music?  If you can get your hands free, here are a few movements you can do while you are reading email, blogs, watching your favorite show.  If you are a big-time book reader get a book stand you can prop your book up with and do these exercises!  I’m a huge reader and if I have the time to treat that indulgence, I try to get exercises in.

This exercise helps to strengthen and tighten the shoulder muscles all around the rotator cuff.

1. Sit tall (pull in that tummy!) Align your head with your spine. Arms out to the side (shoulder level) (you look like the letter T ). Now at this position you want to tighten your arms (if you have problem elbows…don’t lock them out.  Have a slight bend in them, but still tighten your arm muscles the best you can) and bring them about five inches up and about five inches down.  Kind of like you want to flap your arms but with tight control.  The movement is small.  Don’t bother counting.  Just do it until it burns and then count like ten more past the burn.  What I like to do when it starts to burn is widen my “flap” and move my arms about two feet up and two feet down.  I do this for about 10-20 past the burn point.  You can do this movement with a wider up-and-down movement if you’d rather.

2. Same position….tummy muscles in, and head, and spine tall.  Tighten your arms and do small circles forward until burn….Don’t stop!….after the burn going forward; now do them backwards and do them until you absolutely can’t anymore. When you do the next set start off backwards and then after the burn do the circles forwards.

3.  Same position…tummy in and head and spine tall.  With your tight arms out to the side in your “T” formation, in this exercise all you do is move your arms towards the back. It’s a small movement.  Your arms go back about 6 inches.  Then back to the starting position. Burn them out! ;P

4. Same T position…remember pulling in that tummy helps to protect the lower back. With arms out, turn palms facing toward the ceiling.  Now flip the palms towards the floor.  The movement is as if you had something in the palm of your hand and now you are turning your hand down to drop it.  Flipping a burger or flap-jacks!   Do those until you can’t do them anymore.

*Try all these exercises with palms facing up towards ceiling, or down towards the ground, or palms facing forward, or palms facing towards the back of the room. You will feel it deeper in muscles and in different areas of the shoulder.  The stretch you get from all these positions feel really good!

*It’s important with all theses exercises, your shoulders are set in correct position, and even height (you don’t want one shoulder higher than the other), and muscles around them to be tight as well, because you want your ball and socket inside your shoulder to be stable.

*Don’t lift shoulders up or down. Try and keep them stable.  It is your arms only that move and when you are counting inches, use your hand position as the starting and stopping point.

*Don’t forget to breathe! I like to start off all exercise movements with a couple of deep cleansing breaths.  It kind of resets my breath.  I too, fall into shallow breathing, and I must remind myself to breathe correctly.

*It helps if you tighten up your whole upper body.  Chest is tall too. Helps to lock in those shoulders.

Okay folks, so while you are doing your brain some good through reading, you can be doing your body a favor by keeping it strong and healthy.  I care is why I share…if anyone out there would like other tips that I haven’t mentioned yet, send me an email.  I’ll be happy to blog or personally help you out.  Let’s keep finding ways to move our bodies!

Here’s to awesome health. Go grab you some! ✾ Koko❀

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Raw Honey

Honey can vary in taste and color.

What kind of vessel the honey is put into has a huge impact on how the honey will taste. Glass is the best container to put honey in as it helps the honey to retain its original taste. That is my number one choice. I prefer most of my containers especially if it is for food to be in glass containers. Say NO to chemicals leaching into your foods! 😛

If you take that same honey and put it into a metal container or a plastic container, both, will have a different taste. Both metal and plastic leech chemicals into the honey and can affect the flavor and the same goes for the color of the honey. The vessel can cause a reaction and the honey color can change. But to be fair, nature changes the honey color as well. For instance raw honey gets darker as it ages.

Flavor, taste, and color can also be different from season to season as well and where/what flowers the bees are getting the pollen from.

Now let’s talk “raw” honey. The main difference is raw honey is NOT heated. The honey you mostly see in stores; the clear, liquid honey, has been treated with heat through pasteurization. It gets filtered this way. Processing honey this way, kills most of the beneficial enzymes and nutrients.

Raw honey gets some filtration action, but they do it in such a way that the good stuff is still in the honey.  Unprocessed honey will give you the maximum amount of all natural antioxidants and the benefits as a whole food.

What I look for when buying honey is the wording raw and the wording un-pasteurized on the label. But it is not as simple as that; I know annoying! Make sure you know where your honey comes from and you can trust the source. Some honey producers will mix their honey with outside sourced honey. It’s cheaper for them to do this and what you are getting is not a good quality honey. Check it’s source!

Raw honey should look thick and cloudy. (see picture). It is a solid at room temp and of course a liquid when heated. The cloudy look means the honey still contains all the healthy goodness; vitamins, minerals, live enzymes, bee propolis and pollen granules.

photo (67)

Notice how the honey stays on the spoon and the color is not clear.

There are also a variety of unpasteurized honey you may have heard of; there is the raw honey, and buckwheat honey, manuka honey (from New Zealand), wild flower, and a few others.

For the healthiest, best for you honey, go for the raw. You want it unpasteurized, unfiltered, unheated, unprocessed, as it comes straight out of the bees home! Keeping all the goodness in so your body can reap all the benefits!

Go raw!

In awesome health, Koko