Restore your scuffed wood naturally
Wopw – I had no idea!
Please see hereunder some comments on this posting for yet further valuable information:
Don’t throw your kitchen scraps away, put them to work. The outer skins of fruit and vegetables are filled with flavor and vitamins, and most often have enough matter left in them for another go-round.
Some people are peelers, some people aren’t. Some people swear by the nutrients and fiber found in produce skins, others shy away from the taste or texture, or prefer removing the outer layer to reduce pesticide load. Regardless of your peeling preferences, citrus rinds, potato and other root/tuber peels, scooped-out avocados, and even cheese rinds all have more than one life.
Aim to use organic produce in these applications, and make sure to scrub well. And if you don’t have time or need for them at the moment, most of them can be frozen for future use.
1. Clean Greasy Messes
Before bringing out the big (toxic) cleaning gunsin the kitchen, try lemon. Sprinkle affected area with salt or baking soda (to act as an abrasive) and then rub with juiced lemon halves. (Be careful using lemon on sensitive surfaces such as marble.)
2. Shine Your Coffee Pot
For the old diner trick to make glass coffee pots sparkle: Add ice, salt and lemon rinds to an empty coffee pot; swirl around for a minute or two, dump, and rinse well.
3. Clean Your Tea Kettle
For mineral deposit build up in tea kettles, fill the vessel with water and a handful of lemon peels and bring to a boil. Turn off heat and let sit for an hour, drain, and rinse well.
4. Dye Fabric
Pomegranate peels make for great coloring material. Use a stainless steel pot large enough to cover the fabric, fill with hot water and add peels, let it sit overnight. Simmer the water and peels the next day and then remove peels and add wet fabric. Simmer gently for one hour and allow to cool overnight. Remove the next day, rinse in cool water–from thereon, wash with similar colors.
5. Make Zest
If you’ve juiced lemons, limes, oranges, or grapefruit but don’t have an immediate need for zest, you can make it anyway and dry or freeze it for future use—zest is a versatile item to have on hand for a bright boost in any number of dishes. If you don’t have a microplane or zester, you can also use the small side of a box grater. Try to scrape just the outer layer, the white layer of pith is bitter. Freeze in an airtight container. To dry, spread the zest on a towel and leave until dried, then store in a clean jar.
6. Make Citrus Extract Powder
Make zest or twists (lemons, limes, oranges, or grapefruit) being sure to remove the pith–and allow to dry, about 3 or 4 days for twists, less for zest. Put in a blender (or spice grinder) and pulverize into a powder. Store in a clean jar.
7. Make Citrus Sugar
Make citrus extract powder and add it to sugar, or you can use fresh twists, put them in a jar with sugar, let the peel’s oil infuse the sugar and remove.
8. Make Lemon Pepper
Mix lemon extract powder with freshly cracked pepper.
9. Make Citrus Olive Oil
Pound citrus peel (pith removed) in a mortar and pestle with some oil added. Place in a jar with more oil and let rest for six hours. Strain into a clean jar.
10. Make Infusions
Infuse honey or vinegar with citrus peels by placing twists and letting the flavors seep. Strain the liquid and store in a clean jar.
11. Make Potato Crisps
Mix potato peels with enough lemon juice and olive oil to evenly coat. Spread the potato peels in a layer on a baking sheet and cook at 400 degrees, stirring once, until golden brown (about 10 minutes). Season to taste.
12. Make Stock
Boil potato peels, onion skins, carrot peels, leek ends, etc for vegetable stock. (Also save fresh herb stems for this!)
13. Boost Soup and Stock
Cheese rinds (sans wax) can be placed in soup stocks for an awesome secret boost of flavor and texture.
14. Add “Meat” to Greens
Cheese rinds can also be added to braised greens for added flavor depth.
15. Keep Brown Sugar Soft
If you regularly fall victim to the brick in the pantry known as hardened brown sugar, try adding some lemon peel (with traces of pulp and pith removed) to keep it moist and pliable.
16. Make Vanilla Sugar
If you use fresh vanilla, after scraping the bean, add the pod to sugar to make vanilla-infused sugar.
17. Make a Banana Sugar Scrub
Sprinkle sugar on the flesh side of banana peels and use as a soft, exfoliating loofa. Rub gently all over your body and then rinse in the shower.
18. Refresh Your Face
For a skin tonic, rub orange or grapefruit peels on your face (avoiding your eyes) and then gently rinse with warm water.
Rub the fleshy part of an avocado peel on your face for a rich moisturizer.
20. Relieve Your Peepers
Potato peels can reduce puffiness around eyes; press the moist side of the fresh peels to the skin for 15 minutes.
Container gardening isn’t only for savvy urban gardeners and folks with limited space to grow, it can also be for folks who want to maximize their yields in a controlled environment. Not only does growing potatoes in a barrel reduce the amount of weeding and exposure to pests and fungi, you don’t even have to risk shovel-damage to the tender potatoes by digging them out of the ground when they’re done, just tip the container over!
After extensive research to plan my own potatoes-in-a-barrel, I’ve boiled all of the recommendations down to 4 simple steps to a winning potato harvest.
You’ll need to pick out a container such as a 50-gallon trash barrel or one of those half whiskey barrel planters. Alternatively, you can buy used food-grade barrels or commercially-available potato planters. Just about any 2 to 3-foot tall container will work, but be sure to select a container that either already has holes in it, or is okay to cut holes in. Next you’ll want to clean your container with a mild bleach solution to get out any of the nasties that have been lingering in there. If you don’t want to use bleach, you can make a bleach alternative to use instead.
Good drainage is critical for the cultivation of healthy potatoes so you’ll want to cut or drill a series of large drainage holes in the bottom and bottom sides of your container. Alternatively, you can cut out the bottom altogether and place it on a well-drained surface like your garden bed.
Seed potatoes can usually be found at nurseries early in the growing season, but you should only have to buy them once. If you can, “chit” or sprout your potatoes before planting them by setting them out in an egg carton, the side with the most buds facing up, and putting them in a cool light room out of direct sunlight to sprout. Putting the tubers in an open paper bag can have this same effect.
Fill in the bottom of your container with about 6 inches of loose planting mix and compost. You’ll want to use a planting mix with a peat moss-like soil amendment like this product made from repurposed coconut husks, doing so will keep the soil from becoming too compacted and help it to store moisture for the roots. Next, add some seed potatoes on the layer of soil, making certain to leave plenty of space between each cube. You can use the whole potato but I like to cut the potatoes into 1 to 2-inch cubes for planting. Loosely backfill the potatoes with another 6 inches of your soil and compost mix and water to dampen soil. Keep the soil damp at all times but be careful not to overwater.
When they have about 6 to 8 inches of foliage, add another layer of your soil-compost mix covering about one-half to three-quarters of the visible stems and foliage. Repeat this process of allowing the sprouts to grow and then covering the sprouts and moistening the soil as the plants grow up toward the top of the barrel.
After about 10 weeks or until the plants flower and start to yellow, the potatoes should be ready to harvest. Carefully dig down with your hands to inspect the top-most layer. After you’ve confirmed your suspicions, dump the barrel out on a tarp and inspect your bounty.
Have any photos or useful tips for growing potatoes in a barrel? Please share!
“The glory of gardening: hands in the dirt, head in the sun, heart with nature. To nurture a garden is to feed not just the body, but the soul.” – Alfred Austin
Gardeners have been knowing for centuries that their pastime gives them joy and peace. Many people will say that gardening is stress therapy. There is even a group called the American Horticultural Therapy Association “committed to promoting and developing the practice of horticultural therapy as a unique and dynamic human service modality.”
As with so many things, science introduces us to the physical wonders behind what we already know on a subliminal level. There are two interesting pieces of research that give credence to the feeling that our bodies and souls are better off from gardening.
Researchers reported in the journal Neuroscience that contact with a soil bacteria called Mycobacterium vaccae triggers the release of serotonin in the brain. This type of serotonin acts on several different pathways including mood and learning. Lack of serotonin in the brains is related to depression.
So basically, the things we do as gardeners—working the soil, planting, mulching, and so forth—can really contribute to happiness. We ingest the bacteria by breathing or through broken skin. The simple act of children playing outside in the grass and dirt can be a natural way for them to reduce anxiety.
Read more at
Coconut Milk Recipe
It’s really quite easy to make your own coconut milk. In fact, if you’re looking for a dairy alternative, you can make nut milk, rice milk or any other type of milk in just a matter of minutes once your nuts or seeds are soaked over night and rinsed thoroughly.
1. Pasteurized dairy can contain toxins. Pasteurized, factory farmed dairy milk may contain blood, pus, feces, antibiotics, pesticides and growth hormones that impeded the human bodies ability to heal, and remain balanced.
2. Is indigestible for many people after the age of three. Rennin and lactase are needed to break down the casein and lactose present in milk. Once a child stops breastfeeding, at roughly the age of three years old, their body can stop producing these enzymes necessary to digest milk, which is the reason why children and adults can find milk hard to process.
3. Precipitates the formation of mucus which the body attempts to detoxify. The presence of dairy in the body (including cheese, yogurt and ice cream) creates mucosal detoxification in the form of runny noses, coughing up phlegm, the common cold, asthma, sinusitis and bronchitis. This is why many parents of children with asthma or who experience numerous colds are now choosing to stop giving their children pasteurized milk.
If you think that it’s time to start making your own dairy-alternative milk, I suggest a nut milk or a coconut milk!
As with anything, I try to make as much as I can fresh. I make my own coconut milk, as well as other nut milks, though it of course it helps that I live and travel in the tropics, where coconuts are fresh and abundant.
1. First, break open your coconuts. I recommend using a heavy cleaver to do so.
2. Second, pour the liquid into the blender – make sure that you have strained out any pieces of coconut shell or husk that may be in the liquid.
3. Scoop out the flesh with a spoon and add it to the blender.
4. Blend on high for a minute and then strain the mixture through a nut milk bag or cheese cloth. You can save the ‘pulp’ for a future recipe!
5. Return to the blender and add a dash of sea salt and about 1 tsp. of sweetener like honey, dates or maple syrup – this will help preserve the milk.
6. Blend again for 10 seconds, then transfer your milk to a jar or container and store in the fridge!
This batch of coconut milk will last about 4 or 5 days, although I find myself making it fresh every other day. I use it in my tea, my smoothies, my soups … In everything!
By Dr Paul Haider
Everyone knows about Avocados… but did you know that Avocado Seeds are full of great health benefits?
Avocado Seeds have more antioxidants than most fruits and veggies on the market and polyphenols like green tea, plus they are full of more soluble fiber than just about any other food. — Wow!
In fact Avocado Seed has 70% of the antioxidants found in the whole Avocado, and Avocado Seed Oil is also full of antioxidants, lowers cholesterol, and helps fight off disease. And studies show that Avocado Seed has more soluble fiber than oatmeal and just about any other food. Avocado Seed helps to prevent cardiovascular disease, lower cholesterol, and prevent strokes.
Avocado Seed are great for inflammation of the GI tract and diarrhea too! In fact in South America Avocado Seeds are used for dysentery and other GI tract problems. Avocado Seeds has lots of phenolic compounds that help to prevent gastric ulcers, and prevent bacterial and viral diseases.
Avocado Seed contains a flavonol that prevents tumor growth… in fact studies with rats with cancer given Avocado Seed powder looks promising.
Avocado Seeds boost your immune system and keep you from coming down with debilitating diseases. Keeping your immune system high, because antioxidants keep free radicals at bay… and slows the aging process. Avocado Seeds seems to have a good anti-inflammatory ability and thus helps with arthritis and other joint diseases.
Avocado Seed Oil has been shown in studies to increase collagen in your skin thus helping to keep your skin looking young and wrinkle free. Avocado Seed Oil will make your hair shinny and help get rid of dry dead skin.
Avocado Seed Extract studies show that it lowers blood glucose and helps you lose weight… and Avocado Seeds grated, roast, and made into a tea is really great for asthma. And in QiGong Medicine… Avocado Seed is very high in Qi energy… powerful stuff!
Avocado Seeds can be dried, then crushed in a plastic bag with a hammer, then ground in a heavy duty blender (use only 1/2 the seed… and remember they are too hard for most blenders) and grind it up into a powder. And Avocado Seed can be sliced and roast in the oven too! Remember Avocado Seed is slightly bitter so make sure to add it to smoothies and sauces that cover up the bitterness.
Save that Avocado Seed… it’s good for your health!
Dr. Paul Haider is an internationally renowned author and speaker in the field of self-development. He’s the author of many books, having created many audio programs and videos, and has appeared on radio shows and television. His books “Relax into Success” and “21 Ways to Live a Stress Free Life in Only 21 Days” have sold countless copies.
To learn more about Dr Paul Haider, visit www.paulhaider.com