Saturday, November 21, 2009

Final 2009 Food Group, Weeknight Recipes, and Homemade Gifts

Our final food group of 2009 turned out to be a quiet, peaceful evening of three women drinking tea and laughing about our efforts in the kitchen. It was a sweet way to end the year of camaraderie and tale swapping. Sadly, many of our foodies were out sick with the flu or feeling otherwise under the weather. You were missed! Hopefully you all have rested well and enjoyed many, many cups of tea on your journey back to health. (FYI ~ for those of you who have managed to avoid winter illness thus far and are looking for more tips, Emily has a fantastic regimen of natural immune boosters. If you give her an email at, you might be able to tease out a few pointers from her...)

Some of the evening's recipes and Christmas gift ideas have been posted within our Sustainable Food For Thought Google group. If you'd like to become a member, you can take a peek and add your own to the mix. (Tip: recipes/projects have been posted under both "Pages" and "Files.")

I'll take the opportunity to share my favorite homemade gift ~ fondly known within the inner circle as "Better than Burt's Bees Lip Balm" (and this thanks to my friend, Jay, who worked at GloryBee Foods in Eugene, Oregon and initially taught several of us how to make our own magic with nothing more than beeswax, almond oil, vitamin E oil, aloe vera concentrate, and essential oil).

Ted and I have made our own lip balm now for a few years. They're great to make in big batches - perfect for hosting a "make your own" party or for assembling to give as gifts. All supplies (including tins and tubes) are available from GloryBee.

Peppermint Lip Balm

1 oz. pure, filtered beeswax
½ C. sweet almond oil
½ t. vitamin E oil
¼ t. aloe vera concentrate
½ t. peppermint essential oil (or substitute as desired)

Combine beeswax, sweet almond oil, vitamin E oil, and aloe vera concentrate in a small, pourable container (a glass measuring cup works well). Place this container in a saucepan filled with approx. 2 inches of water. Heat the mixture over medium heat until beeswax is completely liquefied. Remove from heat and add essential oil. Pour into containers. Cool completely before use. Makes approx. two dozen 5 gram (.15 oz.) pots or tubes.

Recipe courtesy of GloryBee Foods

~A random smattering of our homemade gifts from Christmasses past~

Crocheted baby blankets...
An online search will yield many, many patterns and designs...
I just made this one up as I went!

Bittie Booties...
(Sadly, my only picture is crazy out of focus!)
Hidden Compartment Books...
~A favorite project from our first Christmas together~
(We enjoyed picking custom titles for each of our siblings)

In other notes of inspiration, I've been intrigued lately by working with raw spices (see: Spice Night), and I've been interested in trying to blend my own teas. The Nourishing Gourmet recently posted a nice recipe and a great list of homemade goodies: Hand Crafted Tea Blend, Blooming Rooibos, and Other Gift Ideas.

If you feel like sharing your own ideas and inspirations, please do!
Post here. Join the Sustainable Food For Thought group. Or send a note to us at

Happy Thanksgiving and a peaceful Christmas season to you all...

No comments:


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...