Monday, April 8, 2013

Applesauce Cake

For someone who is German-American, a natural-toymaker, and interested in alternative education, being aware of the Waldorf world was pretty much a given.  There are many things that I find really attractive about Waldorf (which I would describe as a life philosophy rather than an education method).  There is a simplicity and rhythm to life, a desire to appreciate nature (including the food production process), and gratitude and celebration for all of life's moments, big and small.  What's better, is that no child is too young to take part.

So when I saw the charming Waldorf Kindergarten Snack book with it's sweet illustrations, wholesome recipes, and little fun facts, I knew I had to try something.*  I selected applesauce cake, because I really love applesauce.

Check the recipe out below!

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

How To: Make your Own Beauty Treatments

Honey: Yummy and Good for Skin
Eating and washing healthy are two things that are really important to me.  I make them a priority because my health is important, but even more so because the planet is too.  Sometimes natural beauty fixes don't work (no-poo is NOT for me), but sometimes they do.  I'll try anything once, so I've been through a lot of kooky ideas.  I've kept the best and disregarded the ones that either don't work or take too much time and effort.  I think that's the way life should be ;)

After the jump, see my top five homemade beauty picks!

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Soup for the Soul

Today was rough.  By all accounts.  You know those times when you just can't win?  When your to-do list stays undone?  Where everyone needs something?  Where it snows on the first day of April?  Yeah.

So I did what any good cook does.  I made soup.  Last time I was in New York City I stopped into Gluten Free NYC.  While gluten isn't the only thing I can't eat, it is one of the toughest to avoid, so whenever there's an opportunity, I check those offerings out!

Of course, being corn-free, potato-free, yeast-free, and egg yolk-free cuts down on the GF choices, so as cool as this little store was, there wasn't a lot there for me.  I did manage to snag this little bag of organic, fair-trade King Soba buckwheat Ramen noodles.  A little pricey, yes, but not bad for a pack of four imported from the UK.

I cooked them up today with some baby bok choy, chicken broth, and mushroom.  Boring, yes.  But sometimes in a day filled with unpredictable excitement, that's what you need.

**I can heartily endorse these guys. While definitely pricier than your average ramen, they are delicious, quick-cooking, filling, and certified Gluten Free. King Soba also makes some other products -including ramen noodles with flavor packets. I haven't tried them, and GF NYC stopped stocking them because they didn't think they were up to snuff.

Monday, April 1, 2013

(Choosing) Hostels Like a Pro

Sooo, you’re headed abroad and you want to travel, right?  If you do not want to travel, boooo, that’s the best part!  Of course, fun, safe, and stress-free travel is the goal, here, and the best way to achieve that is to make like a cub scout and be prepared.  So without further ado, here are my hostel tips from several hostels in three European countries –mixed with some anecdotes and advice from friends who’ve seen many more.

First: The internet is your friend.  You know this, but it never hurts to be reminded.  There are several hostel services that allow for easy booking and comparing.  I always used HostelBookers, but you can bargain hunt around several.  Things to look for are good reviews, good security, cleanliness, free maps/wifi/sheets/etc., reviews that mention friendly staff, and no “funny business” –suspiciousness, as I call it.  Every major city has multiple good, safe hostels.  Booking well in advance of your trip means you have a better chance of staying at a good one, and will get a better rate.