thealtmommy


ENERGYbits Review, Giveaway, and Discount Code
August 10, 2013, 11:01 pm
Filed under: Giveaway, Reviews

DISCLAIMER: I was sent a trial of ENERGYbits to sample in exchange for an honest review.

I recently had the opportunity to sample ENERGYbits 100% spirulina algae bits.  They are small bits of pressed algae that you swallow like a vitamin.   They are a whole food source of algae protein, and contain only organically grown spirulina.  Spirulina is a super food which is a great source of protein as well as a source of iron, antioxidants, a multitude of vitamins and minerals, amino acids, and electrolytes.

From one of the informational cards they sent me: “We are committed to your health.  That’s why all our ENERGYbits are 100% pure, organically grown, certified NON GMO algae that contains no sugar, caffeine, gluten, additives, animal products, chemicals or fillers of any kind.  ENERGYbits are 100% pure spirulina algae that has 64% protein, 40 nutrients, and GLA (an Omega 3), all for just one calorie per.  Remember, they are not pills.  They are BITS of green food (algae is a crop that is grown hydroponically, harvested and air dried like other crops).”

ENERGYbits are recommended as a pre-workout snack, when you’re hungry, or when you just need a little boost of energy.  I took them on days when I was working and cleaning at home.  I didn’t really notice any appetite-suppressing effect, but they were a very clean source of energy.

I was pleased with my experience with ENERGYbits.  I wasn’t feeling well and was working a lot on the days they sent them.  They gave me a subtle natural energy that helped me get through my day without feeling exhausted or needing a nap.  They don’t come on strong like energy shots or synthetic supplements.  You can definitely tell that it is a food-based source of protein.  If you’re looking for a quick heavy jolt, these aren’t going to be your thing, but if you want consistent energy in a natural and healthy way, I recommend trying them.  It was also an easy way to up my protein intake and my consumption of superfoods.

The down side: you have to swallow 30 bits for one dose.  I don’t have many problems swallowing pills so I took them 5 at a time.  For some people I can see where this would be a turn-off.  They also stink.  They smell like fish food.  This was my first time consuming spirulina so I don’t know if it always smells bad, but these definitely do.

There is also the cost.  $115 for a 1,000 count bag.  I really enjoyed the product and am planning to order some when I can afford it.  Although they work well, this price tag isn’t in everybody’s budget.

The folks at ENERGYbits were kind enough to offer a discount for my blog readers.  You can order ENERGYbits at www.energybits.com.  When ordering ENERGYbits simply use the coupon code BLOG in the coupon box for a 10% discount.

Want an even sweeter deal?  Enter below to WIN a trial size container of ENERGYbits.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

You can also find ENERGYbits on facebook and twitter.



Sustainable Sunday [a day late]: Essential Oils: Tea Tree Oil
August 5, 2013, 9:38 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

Essential oils are great for anybody trying to live a more sustainable life because they are so versatile.  One of the most versatile essential oils is melaleuca alternifolia better known as Tea Tree Oil.  TTO, like other essential oils, is all-natural.  It is also antimicrobial, antibacterial, and antifungal.  I also find the smell to be pleasant.

One of the most common things I use TTO for is cleaning products.  Whenever I make my own cleaning products (mostly out of vinegar) I add TTO both for its antibacterial properties as well as to add a natural fragrance to my cleaner.  Just a few drops goes a long way!

TTO can be used to treat several skin conditions as well.  It can be used on ingrown hairs or razor burn.  I don’t have any sensitivity to TTO so it doesn’t bother me to apply it directly to the skin, but I do recommend using a carrier oil (such as coconut oil) if you aren’t sure how your skin will react or have never used it before.  It can be used to treat burn or blisters, cuts, acne and facial blemishes, athlete’s foot, and nail fungus as well.

Two things that I have NOT used TTO for yet, but want to check out are bug repellant and mold removal.  I’ve been researching these things on the Internet.  There are several different recipes, but I’ll share with you what I’ve found to be the most common recommendations:

Bug repellant: 1/2 oz of TTO to 1/2 Cup of coconut oil or olive oil.  Apply topically to your skin before going out.

Mold removal: 2tsp of TTO to 2 Cups of water.  Spray on mold.  Do not rinse.

Leave me a comment and let me know about your own experiences with TTO.  I’ll update you guys on my success using it for a bug repellant and for mold removal.



Sustainable Sunday
July 29, 2013, 1:47 am
Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags: , ,

I’m going to be doing a new series called Sustainable Sunday on the blog.  Each week I’ll discuss a different topic related to living a sustainable lifestyle.

I didn’t plan on this idea, but it just sort of came into my mind and resonated really strongly with me.  Since it is already pretty late on Sunday evening I don’t have a big post for this week.

I do have a picture of today’s cucumber harvest though!

ImageTheAltDaddy picked 8 cucumbers today, and we have 2 more that will be ready tomorrow.  I’m trying to decide between making pickles or simply giving away a few.  I think I want to try to make my own pickles since I’ve never done that before.

You guys comment and let me know what topics you’d like to see covered in the future on Sustainable Sunday.



I Need You Guys Help!
July 26, 2013, 8:46 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags: , ,

I’ve been interested in essential oils to some degree for years, but recently I’ve become very passionate about them.  I’ve used them on myself and my family with great results.  I am a firm believer in the power of essential oils.  Over the last few days I’ve found myself recommending essential oils to local people who I do not know particularly well.  Unfortunately there is no local source to purchase essential oils and receive accurate information about their use.  I would be honored to provide such a service to my community.

I’m currently raising funds to help purchase my initial starter kit to become a doTERRA consultant.  If you believe in the power of essential oils (or just want to help a poor girl out!) please consider donating.

http://www.youcaring.com/nonprofits/bring-high-quality-essential-oils-to-ashley-county-/75247

I will be doing consultations (in person for locals, via phone or Internet if you don’t live nearby) to all donors to share more information about essential oils.  No pressure to buy anything.  I just love spreading this information regardless of where or even if you purchase your products.  The main reason I need this kit is so I can allow people with no experience with essential oil to sample the oils before deciding to purchase.

I will also be doing a special prize for the top three donors.  This could be something like a homemade sugar scrub or room refreshing spray.  It could also be some other custom beauty or household product.  The prizes will be determined after I speak with the highest donors to find out a little more about what they would be interested in receiving.

Thanks in advance!

http://www.youcaring.com/nonprofits/bring-high-quality-essential-oils-to-ashley-county-/75247



Black Bean and Rice Burritos

I did not plan to post this recipe so soon.  Whenever I came up with this dish, I cooked it just hoping that it would be okay.  It ended up tasting GREAT.  I knew immediately that I wanted to share it with you guys.  I wanted to wait until I had a chance to cook it again so I could have a snazzy post with step-by-step photos.  I’m just too excited to share the recipe to wait!  It may be a week or more before I can cook it again.  I will update with beautiful pictures soon, but just trust me… this is an awesome dish!  Big thanks to TheAltDaddy for taking these pictures for me!

Black Bean and Rice Burritos

Makes approximately 6 burritos.

INGREDIENTS:

– 1/2 Cup rice (I used Lundberg’s Organic Heirloom Short-Grain Brown Rice)
– 1 tbspCoconut or Olive oil (I prefer coconut, but you guys know that!)
– 1/2 Onion, Chopped
– 1 Clove minced garlic
– 1/2 Chopped and seeded jalapeno pepper
– 1/2 Can green chiles
– 1/2 tsp Seasoning Sal
– 1/2 tsp Oregano
– 1 can black beans (or 1 cup of cooked black beans)
– Salt, pepper, and queso blanco to taste
– Tortillas

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1.  Cook rice according to package.  I highly recommend Lundberg’s Organic Heirloom Short-grain Brown Rice.  No, they do not sponsor my blog.  I am just simply totally in love with this product.  Here is a (crappy cell phone quality) picture so you’ll know what to look for if you choose to use this brand.

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2.  As the rice cooks, pour the oil in a large pan and let it heat up.  Once the oil is hot, saute the jalapeno, green chiles, onion, and garlic.  I added my oregano, seasoning salt, and black pepper in at this point.

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3.  Once the peppers and onion are soft, add the beans to the pan.  Heat the beans with the mixture of peppers, onion, and spices.  The beans will really absorb the flavor and give the dish a great taste.

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4.  When the rice is done cooking, add it in with the beans.  If you like cheese, sprinkle some queso blanco on top of the rice and beans, and heat until the cheese is melted.

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5.  Heat a cast iron skillet.  Place the rice and bean mixture in the center of a tortilla.  Roll it up and place the burrito on the cast iron skillet.  I find this to be easiest if you heat it seam-side down first.  Brown for 1-3 minutes, flip, and repeat.

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6.  Enjoy!

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Let me know how you like the recipe if anybody decides to try it.

[And don’t judge me by my dirty stove or lack of burrito folding skills!]



Healthier Popcorn Made With Coconut Oil (And a giveaway!)
July 12, 2013, 11:46 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags: , , ,

Healthier Popcorn Made With Coconut Oil (And a giveaway!)

I don’t normally post links to other blogs or giveaways, but this one was too good not to share!  I love popcorn cooked in coconut oil.  It’s a staple snack in our home!  This recipe is pretty much exactly what we use (although we don’t use virgin CO), and there is even a chance to win your own coconut oil from Tropical Traditions!  Hurry and check it out guys, the giveaway only lasts two more days!



Unschooling by a Former and Future Teacher
July 6, 2013, 9:40 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , ,

My background is in education.  I’ve wanted to be a teacher since I was 11 years old.  I used to read textbooks for fun.  As a tween.  What the hell was wrong with me?!  I knew I wanted to teach high school, but went back and forth between wanting to teach English or history.  I actually taught preschool for one year and quickly realized that I do not have the patience, creativity, or coloring and cutting skills necessary for teaching that age group.  I ended up deciding I wanted to teach history, which is what I completed my B.A. in last month.

Ironically, I do not want my child to attend school.  My husband and I have both talked about it many times.  We absolutely do not want our child going to school where we presently live.  I’m not totally opposed to her ever attending any school, but I detest the way the public education system emphasizes testing and rote memorization.  There are also no private schools in my area except the one that I attended which is (a) supported by evangelicals and teaches fundamentalist Christian doctrine as fact and (b) isn’t even accredited.  So, yeah, we’ll definitely be passing on that one!

This has put me in quite the odd position.  My daughter will be 4 in November.  I’ve decided to do what I’m calling unpreschool.  I’ve been researching and creating activities for my daughter to do according to her interests.  In the process I’m having to deschool myself.  I’m also simultaneously studying academic theory as it applies to teaching secondary school, and looking for a job as a high school history teacher.

If I don’t go insane from reading information from two very different perspectives, I will be immensely proud of myself.  And probably reward myself with a glass box of wine.