Saturday, March 30, 2013

Happy Resurrection Day!!

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Just a quick post to say, "Happy Resurrection Day!!"  We wish you & yours a very blessed day of rejoicing & celebrating the gift of eternal life through Jesus Christ, our Lord & Savior!! 

Mama Lee & Family

Friday, March 22, 2013

Product Reviews Coming Soon!!

I just wanted to say that I have some reviews on books & great products I will be sharing with you soon!!  I am devouring two REALLY great books right now & can't wait to share about them as well as the other products with you soon too!!

A little funny... & of course, I do NOT speed!! LOL
Have you read any good books lately??  What are some of your favorite products or types of products??  Are there any you would like to see featured here??

Homemade Sports Drink / Electrolyte Replacement / Labor-Ade

Sigh, unfortunately we've had the opportunity to use this recipe as an electrolyte replacement a few times lately.  Since it tastes so yummy, we go through it rapidly every time I make it, & even those who are not sick enjoy it too!!

I also bottle it up in re-purposed glass bottles or small jars (I use plastic bottles if we will be inside though, just in case... I don't want to be the mama who brought glass & their kid broke the bottle all over the floor... that everybody is shaking their heads at wondering why on earth they brought glass... uhm, hello... BPA?!) for the youngster Lees during sports, practices, etc.

All ready to drink
Why homemade?!  Well, first of all, it is very frugal AND sports drinks, such as Gatorade & Powerade, & electrolyte replacement beverages are all chock full of chemicals, dyes, high fructose corn syrup (which contains mercury & lead!), artificial sweeteners, fluoride, etc... all things that tax the immune system, especially when it is most fragile... not that they are "healthy" at any time, but they should be especially avoided when we are sick, dehydrated, etc.  While using store bought lemon juice and/or line juice does usually contain sulfites, as preservatives, I still tell myself that (say it with me!) "Whatever I make at home is almost always STILL going to be healthier that store bought"... especially on a limited budget.

This drink has many purposes... in fact, during a homebirth my midwife & nurse made some of this and tried to get me to drink it...they called it Labor-Ade & I was convinced they were trying to make me feel even MORE miserable than I already felt with their voodoo potion (when I am laboring I am not always super trusting of people, even when they are truly trying to help me! LOL) ... of course, I knew that wasn't true & that it wasn't really voodoo potion... but being as sick as I was, I was just not feeling the mind you, I was in the throes of hard, hard posterior L.A.B.O.R. (my 2nd straight day of it too w/no rest!) & could not even hold down water, & this did NOT go over so well with me either... but when not in labor I have grown to REALLY like it!!

I assume when the midwife made it, it was made with sugar if she used what we had in our pantry, and I have since made it with local honey instead of cane sugar as I am trying to replace sugar with honey, as much as possible.  We often have crystallized honey around the house, & I like to keep the raw properties of it intact when using it as an ingredient in something like a beverage that won't be cooked or baked,  so I prefer not to heat it to get it to turn into a liquid again (even though you can heat it to 110 degrees & still keep it raw).

The issue w/using crystallized honey in a beverage recipe though is that it tends to stay clumped in a glob, unless you stir, stir, & stir some more.  So I actually put a bit of the water & the rest of the ingredients (the salt, the baking soda, lemon, & lime) in my Vitamix with the honey and it gets all mixed up together.  You could certainly use a regular blender or you could just stir it by hand... or you could just heat your honey up if you aren't as type A as me so it would stir in easier & be done with it! LOL

Rest assured, this is not overly sweet & doesn't make you feel like you are slugging down a glass of straight sugar (even if you use sugar instead of honey) because the amount of sugar, honey, etc. is so minimal compared to the ratio of water, that the sweetness is very subtle & refreshing.  For comparison, an 8 ounce cup of juice contains 8 TABLESPOONS of SUGAR (if juice contains that much sugar, imagine what soda contains), so the sugar ratio in this beverage is very low.

Have fun with it... feel free to make it both ways (sugar or honey) & see what your preference is... you can also use xylitol, stevia, etc.


1 gallon of water (minus 1 cup to account for the lemon juice)
1 cup lemon juice
2 tablespoons lime juice (optional, but I really think it adds a nice taste)
1/2 cup sugar, honey, or other sweetener
1 tsp salt (I usually use kosher, unrefined, or pink Himalayan but you can use what you have)
1/2 tsp baking soda

Instructions using a blender

1.  If using crystallized honey (or to speed up the process of dissolving the sugar), add a couple cups of water & the rest of the ingredients to a Vitamix or blender.  Blend until everything is dissolved, which is usually 30 seconds or less.

2.  If using the blender pour the blended ingredients into a pitcher, canning jars, jug, etc. & add the remaining water.  Stir gently, chill, & enjoy!  

Instructions for stirring by hand 

1.  If stirring by hand, add 2 cups or so of water & the other ingredients to your container.  Stir until dissolved.  

2.  Add the remaining water.  Stir gently, chill, & enjoy! 

I find it neater & easier to stir to only add in some of the water at 1st until all of the ingredients are dissolved... doing it this way has saved me a lot of clean-ups especially w/all of my little helpers... trust me on this one!! 

You can drink it right away, but it does taste better if it has time to chill & for the flavors to mesh together.   

What do you usually drink when sick, when the weather is scorching hot, and/or when participating in sports or something else that is taxing to your body??  Do you think you will make this??  The ingredients are sure simple & most of us should have them on hand.  Please check back in with me & let me know how you like it if you make it!

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Honey, Lemon, & Ginger Tea

Unfortunately, we've had some opportunities to try out a homemade remedy I read about a while ago.  It soothes a sore throat, eases coughs, warms your chilled body, & tastes very yummy!  It is also delicious to drink just because, even if you aren't sick. 

Honey & lemon and honey, lemon, & ginger
When someone is sick or just wants a yummy drink, I get requests for "Honey, Lemon, Ginger Tea" which is so-named because it is made of honey, lemons, & ginger... you can also make it with just honey & lemons, if you prefer or if you don't have any ginger.  You add some of the yummy mixture to a mug of warm water, & voila, smiles all around!

I use organic lemons because you leave the peels intact & since right now organic lemons are the same price or almost the same as conventional lemons, it just makes sense to use organic.  If you don't have organic lemons you can use non-organic ones too.

The original recipes I found called for more lemons, but no matter how long I let it set for, it never got thick as others said their concoctions did (they said theirs got to be like a marmalade, but mine were always like water).  I found when I use one lemon instead of two I get a thicker consistency (although still not as thick as a marmalade), plus there is more mixture in the jar without the extra lemon slices taking up space.

Feel free to experiment to find if you like more or less lemons, ginger or not, etc!


- 1 (or 2) medium size sliced lemon - I try to remove as many seeds as I can while slicing, but I don't worry too much if I miss any, which I usually do.

- OPTIONAL - fresh sliced or grated ginger (I usually use about 2 pieces the size of my pointer finger) - I Imagine you could also use ginger powder, etc.

- 2 1/2 - 4 cups of honey (local, raw honey is ideal, but you can use what you have access to) - I use 2 1/2 c honey when I make the lemon & honey and approx 3 1/2 - 4 c of honey when I make the lemon, honey, &  ginger as I use a larger glass jar to allow room for the space the ginger takes up.


Grated ginger... see the stringy strands at the top??
1. Slice the lemons (removing as many seeds as possible, but don't stress about missing some) & put them in your glass jar (sometimes I just cut them into slices & sometimes I slice them & then cut the slices in 1/2... do whatever works best for you)

2. If using ginger, slice, dice, or grate it & add it to the glass jar & gently mix it w/the lemon slices (**warning** when grated I found that ginger has these string-like things in some of the pieces, & they kind of look like hair, so if that will gross you out, stick with slicing and/or dicing rather than shredding it... you may just want to trust me on this one, okay?!)
Lemon & ginger before adding the honey

3. Add honey almost to the top

4. Stir w/a butter knife, chopstick, or spoon to mix it together

5. Screw the lid on tight

6. Place in fridge overnight (the lemons will rise to the top of the jar & if you are type A, like I am, it will irritate you, but rest assured it will still turn out wonderfully even if you don't keep stirring it & trying to get the lemons to stop from rising... yes, I did that my 1st batch until I finally gave up... & yes, it DID still turn out, much to my relief!)

7. Wait patiently (or not so patiently ;0) for morning to come!

8. Stir mixture, add 1-3 TSP to a mug of warm-hot water, stir, & enjoy the yummy goodness!!

Ready to stir into some water
-- I usually add 1 tsp to about 4 oz of water & use more of the mixture depending upon how much water I use, so approx. 2 tsp honey lemon to 8 oz of water... but my cup is jumbo in size so I use more of both... I don't drink coffee so this is an awesome drink if I need something to take the edge off of the frigid winter weather, in addition to the other uses I already mentioned ;0)!

For anybody who knows me, you know I like to plan ahead... so one day I was wondering what I was going to when the hot weather arrives... I sure would miss our "tea"... did I mention just how find we are of this?! So when a friend was over I decided to see how it would be liked if it were served by stirring it into room temperature or cold water.... & everybody really liked it... the kids asked for more... so rest assured, if you find you like this as much as we do in the cold months, you won't have to give it up when the warm weather arrives!!

Also, for anybody who just do NOT like plain water, this may help you drink more of it (or some water for those who drink none), so give it a try & let me know how you like it!!

Do you have a favorite warm/hot drink you drink to soothe a sore throat, help relieve a cough, or just to help warm up??  Do you like honey, lemon, and/or ginger??  What do you drink to quench your thirst in warmer weather??  Do you think you will give this a try (it sure is easy & fast enough!!)??

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Checking In...

Just checking in to say I will be posting again soon... I had a stomach bug that wiped me out (plus our internet was down)... still taking things slow, getting back into our routine.  I hope you are all healthy & avoiding the sick bugs!!

In the meantime, here is a little funny picture I saw a while ago that I thought I'd share... and this could just as easily be called "over protective mom" too... trust me, I have plans for when our kids start to drive!! LOL

Have you been able to dodge the sickness everywhere??  How do you try to avoid sickness??  What do you do to boost your immune system??  I usually don't get sick (minus a cold here or there... or when pregnant), but I sure did get a bug this time!!