Homemade SUGAR SALT Scrub

Homemade Sugar Salt Scrub

Winter is here in Colorado and its time for flaky, dry skin again! YAY! Well, not really yay…

Its time to add some permanent fixes to your skincare and here is a great addition.

I have started trying to find ways to use more organic, natural and chemical free items as much as possible. This scrub is made out of two simple ingredients; salt and sugar! Simply use this in the bath or shower to remove dead skin cells and keep your body feeling soft and perfect all winter long. It is especially great on the bikini line and underarms to prevent razor bumps.

 

Homemade SUGAR SALT Scrub

Ingredients:

3 cups Epsom salt

2.5 cups brown sugar

10 drops essential oil (optional). I used Jasmine on this batch

Takes 5-10 minutes start to finish.

 

In a large bowl, mix Epsom Sal & Brown Sugar together until well blended. Add desired essential oil and mix. Store in an airtight container to prevent brown sugar from clumping.

Finally, I like to keep my scrub in a small jar by the tub and refill it as I use it. Whatever you use to store your new scrub, just make sure that its air tight s the brown sugar doesn’t harden. You can find a glass jar with a scoop at Hobby Lobby for under $5.

I get about 5 uses out of one small jar and about 30 uses out of this mixture. I estimate that this costs about $5.00 to make. I buy my Epsom salt at Costco which makes the price even lower!

Use to scrub head to toe in the bath or shower, especially before shaving or applying self tanner. Follow with your favorite lotion or oil.

 

If you’re like me and when you went to grab your brown sugar and it was a giant rock here’s what to do:

Place hardened brown sugar in large microwave safe container. Place the brown sugar and another small microwave safe container with water in the microwave (this is to add moisture back to the sugar). Microwave for 3 minutes. Break up the brown sugar brick in the bowl until it is back to original granulated consistency.

Happy Scrubbing!

Welcome to Boulder Joe’s!

Trader Joe’s opened over the weekend in Boulder. I’ve been waiting SO long. Since 1993, in fact. When I lived in Redondo Beach, I worked two doors down from TJ’s. Unfortunately, I was in San Francisco during the Boulder opening so I did my due diligence and asked everyone what they like to shop for at Trader Joe’s.

Here’s the consensus:

 
 

Sweets:

·      Soy Chocolate Ice cream

·      Biscotti

·      Chocolate Chip Cookies

·      Chocolate Bars

·      Cookie Butter (this is not one of ours, but I do not stop hearing about it)

 
 

Packaged foods:

·      Almonds (how are they so much better than other Almonds?)

·      Trail Mix

·      Fancy Crackers

·      Corn Salsa

 
 

Frozen:

·      Orange Chicken

·      Teriyaki Chicken

·      Brown Rice

·      Mac & Cheese

·      Edamame

·      Green Beans

In general, we think the frozen veggies and fruit are good

 
 

Toiletries:

·      Tea Tree products

·      Shaving Cream

·      Sponges

·      Vitamins

 
 

 Others:

·      Fresh Basil

·      Fresh Flowers

·      Bread

·      Broccoli Slaw with Carolina BBQ Sauce

·      Marinated Steak

·      Pesto Chicken

·      3 buck chuck (formerly two buck chuck) the couple I was sitting next to had people bring it to their wedding in Colorado. Not sure I’d put this on my own list.

 

Anything we missed?? Everyone finds their own Joe’s Gems. J

Mary

 

Boulder Trader Joe’s Post Opening Day Craziness

Work Lunches

Continuing our healthy eating theme of late, I thought I would share my Sunday routine for making 5 days of lunches in one afternoon. Being well prepared makes life SO much easier for the rest of the week. With BF needing the equivalent of two full lunches every day, it is much easier to have them all done before we get wrapped up in the week. In order to easily accomplish this, I start by making the carbs…usually brown rice, quinoa, and sweet potatoes. All of those things can cook while I work on the other things. Next comes chicken breasts (seasoned and baked for 45min at 375°), flank steak (marinated and grilled or stir fried), and chicken muffins. Finally the veggies…I usually just steam tons of broccoli and green beans. I try to mix things up, but these are the staples for sure! I also love that if I have leftovers, I can use it for easy dinners or freeze things for later. Next, I pull out the trusty food scale and lots of Tupperware. An assembly line makes things super easy and I can do exactly what is right for each of us.

Usually I start with the carbs so it cools while I do others and then add protein and veggies.

By the time I am done all we have to do is grab and go in the morning!

Between this and the egg muffins, you can have most of your day covered. A couple hours of work really pays off later in the week. Do you have ideas you use to make your healthy habits stick? We always need new ideas!

Kelly

PS- You can see my little lunches in the back row. Measuring also helps me to stay on track with what I need to be eating while looking at all that food!

Super Bowl Party!

Here in Colorado, people have gone Super Bowl crazy! We have some die-hard fans in our state and they have been decked out in their orange and blue for weeks now. From the TV news anchors to my office, everyone has Bronco fever. If you are planning your own Super Celebration, here are some of our best ideas to impress your guests!

First, get the grill warmed up and get a smokey twist on Chicken Wings to start things off! While you have that grill all ready, fancy up some Burgers starting with homemade buns. The perfect side for burgers is potato salad, in our family we do it German Style. For an easy main dish that will keep all day, just throw some Chili
together and let guests eat at their leisure. What is a Super Bowl party without Guacamole? Try it Traditional or with a Sweet Twist! Try BBQ in wontons for something different. If you are looking to lighten things up a bit make a colorful Veggie Display or some Baked Chicken Fingers with tons of flavor sure to be a hit. Or bring stadium food home with Soft Pretzels.

 

GO BRONCOS!

Menu Planning

Everyone is so busy now-a-days with duel working households, endless activities and chores, the list always seems to go on. We are certainly no exception. BF and I both work and have our own activities keeping us busy. We also try to exercise and eat healthy. The task of keeping even just the two of us fed for a reasonable amount of money and time invested often seems daunting. For those of you with families, I am sure it is compounded!

We often talk about eating healthy and that there is a triangle you get to choose from: healthy, tasty and affordable. The caveat is you can usually only pick two. We are doing our best to work all three in as often as possible, but that takes planning. The best way we have found to stay on track is to plan our menu for the week and create a shopping list prior to our weekend errands. BF and I sit down together and talk about the schedule for the week and what we would like to have. I usually have some new recipe I have been wanting to try (usually inspired from my Pinterest boards). I also plan to have things that complement each other so I can cut down on the number of things we are making, for example rice with two meals or leftovers with lunch. We then make a list of what to get at the “regular” store and what to splurge on at Whole Foods. We seem to stay much more on track when we have a plan and don’t do as much impulse buying.

I am also working much harder at paying attention to coupons. I think you can get sucked in to couponing and end up buying things you don’t need, but for those things you buy anyway it is great if you can save a little. This week our store was offering a coupon for 10% off your groceries if you got your flu shot. So for a flu shot that was covered by my insurance, we saved more than $10 off our groceries…those things really do add up! I have even gotten pretty good at remembering to bring my own bags, which is now something we pay for in our town. I feel really good about myself when I remember bags and coupons!

You can see from our scribly menus that our system is not fancy, but it works for us. The latest menu goes on the fridge and we work together to make it work for the week. We often shop on Saturday and I prep on Sunday. That usually involves roasting chicken breasts and prepping veggies. I try to make sure we have things that are easy to pack for lunches (probably where we save the most money from this system). Mary, Ali, Geff and I recently had an all day cooking extravaganza to create some meals for the freezer…lots more on that to come…it has been so helpful to have soups and sauces, even ready-made meals on hand. It is so nice to be able to pull something out and know where it came from. Sometimes the best laid plans don’t work out (like when I forget to defrost the fish) but for the most part this helps us a lot! Do you do something similar? I would love suggestions!

Kelly

First Day of Summer!

How did you spend your first day of summer? BF and I enjoyed an al fresco dinner on our brand new patio furniture.

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We had be looking for something for a while and finally found the perfect thing on sale. When you live in a place that boasts 300 days of sunshine a year, outdoor living is a way of life, and dining is no exception. I fixed one of our very favorite meals, Poisson Cru.

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It is so light and easy to make. If you are not a sushi lover, this is a good place to dip a toe in. The lime cooks the fish and it takes on a different texture. This one is a keeper! In fact, for lunch today I switched it up a little by eating the leftovers over rice.

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Try it, you won’t regret it! Enjoy summer!
~Kelly

Happy 2011!

Courtesy fairfieldafterdark.com

We would like to kick off 2011 by welcoming you to Zest! We hope you enjoy our upcoming posts on food, fashion, fitness and anything we find fresh. We hope to share with you some useful tidbits and tips that we love and use in our everyday lives.

Share with us your favorite things as well! Cheers to a very Happy New Year from Zest!!