Apr

  • Finally Fermenting on a larger scale!

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    Yes, that's a 4L pickle jar sitting beside my new 20L fermenting crock pot! The instructions say to not fill it more than 80% so, (going by my previous experience of 1 cabbage making 1L) my next trip to the grocery store will include about 15 cabbage heads! The greater plan is that I will always have a months supply of sauerkraut on hand, which will mean I am finally going to have enough underway to let it sit for a full four weeks. Two weeks is the longest my sauerkraut has "aged" before moving it to the fridge, so it will be nice to finally experience the three week, four week, and maybe longer flavours!

    I ordered the crock from Harvest Essentials.  Originally I was going to order one from TSM (The Sausage Makers), but it wasn't available until June.  Looking around for the same pot lead us to Harvest Essentials who had a better price (but unfortunately the same June ETA).  Looking at all of their 20L crocks revealed the one I eventually ordered... on sale from $299.99 to $205.99 (after an additional $10 coupon).

    I was a little leery at first from ordering @ Harvest Essentials since they do not have user account handling setup on their site.  I like a site with an ordering account where I can see my history and track my orders.  Instead they use a yahoo storefront to order from, which after using it does the trick.  I asked questions about shipping and breakage which they answered very quickly, so I feel I received really good customer service.  I was also pleasantly surprised at how well packed and protected the crock was during shipping; top marks!

  • Ditching DIY Deodorant for DIY Antiperspirant

    After my previous post on Lessons learned about natural deodorant, I was still struggling with minor irritation even after eliminating the essential oils and reducing the baking soda.  Wanting to solve my issue, I decided to perform another search, but decided to search for DIY antiperspirant instead of deodorant (I had traditionally used antiperspirants all my life).

    I quickly found a posting of 3 antiperspirant recipes by Bri at Natural News, and boy am I glad I did.  Glancing at the recipes, I decided that I liked the ingredient list of recipe #3, which I have copied below.  The recipe is actually from a HeyFranHey video/blog, and I really enjoyed the information she shared on why she chose each ingredient, as well as which ingredients to adjust to personalize if for the protection you need.  While Fran mentions 2 tablespoons of baking Soda in her video, Bri listed only 1 tablespoon (3 teaspoons) in her recipe, which is what I used.

    4 Tablespoons Cocoa Butter
    4 Tablespoons Shea Butter
    1/2 Cup Arrowroot Powder
    3 Teaspoons Baking Soda
    10 Drops Lavender Essential Oil
    (I use our homemade Thieves Oil blend)

    After using this recipe for over a week, I am well past my normal reaction period of 2-3 days... and happy to report that my irritation is a thing of the past! Thank You Fran for pointing out in your video that Baking Soda is a common irritant for folks with sensitive skin, and Bri for suggesting to use less than Fran's original recipe!

  • First assembled 40K Necron models

    Still need to prime and paint them, but getting these first models assembled was a bit of a milestone... I discovered that I may just need bifocals.  I had to whip out my old soldering gear that had a magnifying glass on a stand so that I could see the up-close detail well enough to shave/trim the model parts.  It wasn't ideal and took alot longer than normal... but I got'er done!  I guess I'll need to visit the pharmacy/costco for some cheap magnifiers and call them safety glasses ;)

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    Once primed and painted, these five models will be used for my first 40K skirmish using the Kill Team rules (200 point battles). I figure it'll be a good to start small as I'm new to the 40K ruleset anyway. I also have more models to put together for some variation, but this is a great beginning.

  • First BIG batch of seaurkraut

    I picked up a dozen cabbages yesterday and washed out the new 20L crock in preparation for large scale fermenting.  Since I had so many cabbages to go through, I decided to make use of the Kitchenaid with the shredding attachment.  It powered through the cabbage like a champ and threw a bonus my way by slightly bruising the cabbage; making it easier to work in the sea salt.  I wondered why the instructions mentioned to only fill the crock 80%, and figured out why as I was putting the weights in... you need the space to work them in.  So the real max capacity of the crock (with weights) is closer to 16L.

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    The idea now is to not disturb the crock for at least two weeks.  The water in the crock channel has the unit nicely sealed, so I don't fear anything going amiss behind the lid.  The greater plan is to only take out a few litres at a time, letting some of the sauerkraut get to 4 weeks if I can stretch it out that long.  I'd like to try let the cabbage fully acidify if I can to see and taste it at it's peak.

  • The 40K Necron Army Grows

    After learning that I couldn't use an HQ model (Illuminor Szeras) in a Kill Team, I needed to make a few more models to choose from; good thing I had previously purchased some variety with the intentions to field larger point armies.

    So I've spent the last few days finishing the assembly of two more Canoptek Wraiths (3), two more Immortals (5), and a complete set of Deathmarks (5).

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    I figure this will round out my initial model build; changing my sights to priming and painting for now.  Hopefully I will have some painted pic's soon; then it'll finally be time to experience playing with Necrons and learning some strategies!

  • Natural deodorant with only ONE ingredient

    In my previous article on DIY Antiperspirant, I linked to a video/blog on the heyfranhey site that had inspired the new antiperspirant recipe I've been enjoying.  However, her final words in the video talked about how her grandmother simply used a fresh lemon wedge.

    Deciding that this "too good to be true" statement was worth exploring, I had to give it a try.  And to my amazement, I found that it actually works!  Simple, effective, and as easy to make as slicing a lemon!

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