Butternut Squash Vegan Mac and Cheese Recipe

Butternut Squash Vegan Mac and Cheese Recipe

If you want a very decadent tasting meal that’s actually super healthy, look no further. This is a recipe that wifey and I have been making for a couple of years now and we absolutely love it. There are tons of vegan mac and cheese recipes but few are even close to healthy as this one and it tastes great!

Butternut Squash Vegan Mac and Cheese

Butternut Squash Vegan Mac and Cheese

1 small chopped onion or shallots
2 Tbsp. olive oil
3 Cloves of garlic
16oz chopped butternut squash
2 large carrots
½ cup pasta sauce
1 Tbsp. dried thyme Continue Reading…

Cucumber-Carrot Goddess Salad (+Kitchen Supreme Spiral Vegetable Slicer Review!)

Cucumber-Carrot Goddess Salad Kitchen Supreme Spiral Vegetable Slicer FTD

Perhaps I’ve been living under a rock lately but I actually had not heard about these neat spiral vegetable slicers until just a few weeks ago. Now of course, I see them everywhere I go. Since it is no secret that I am a huge fan of cool little gadgets, I was more than happy to try out the Kitchen Supreme Spiral Slicer. Check out the simple but delicious salad I made using this little guy.

Product Features:

  • Spiralizer also comes with a flexible cleaning brush, storage bag and digital cookbook and guidebooks when purchased through Amazon
  • Make noodles and spirals out of a whole bunch of different vegetables
  • Made from BPA-Free plastic!
  • Stainless steel Japanese blades that are guaranteed to last
  • Two different sized blade choices to choose from for added versatility
  • Has a safety cap to make sure that you don’t cut your fingers
  • Dishwasher safe

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Green Home Cleaning: Three Easy Uses for Lemon Essential Oil

Green Home Cleaning: Three Easy Uses for Lemon Essential Oil

Keeping a clean home is important to me – but so is keeping as many harmful chemicals out of my house as possible. Luckily, with a few common natural ingredients, you can make cleansers, polishes, and more that are just as effective as toxic national brands. I recently received Majestic Pure Cosmeceuticals Lemon Essential Oil to review, which I was happy to add to several of my home cleaning recipes.

Lemon Essential Oil - Household Cleaner

Make an easy, green all purpose cleaner with water, white vinegar, and lemon essential oil!

 1. All Purpose Kitchen/Bath Cleaner:

Mix 1 part water with 1 part white vinegar in a spray bottle (I use a very old Windex bottle) and add 10-20 drops lemon essential oil. Perfect for cleaning countertops, bath tubs, and any other non-porous surfaces.

2. Wood Polish:

Combine equal amounts of vinegar and olive oil and add 15 drops lemon essential oil. Shake well and use to clean and polish finished wood. Like with all polishes, always test on a small area first to make sure it will not damage the finish. Continue Reading…

11 Common Ingredients and Foods that are Not So Vegan

11 Common Ingredients and Foods that are Not so Vegan

In the world of nutrition and ingredients, things are not always what they seem. We are so used to seeing random ingredients on the labels of our foods that we don’t even pay too much attention to them anymore. Here is a handy little list to have for ingredients and other foods that are not so vegan but are commonly found in everyday foods.

  • Casein (also Caseinate and Sodium Caseinate)
    Casein is a milk protein. Milk is not vegan. Comically enough, it’s actually found in a lot of soy products, which seems counterintuitive to me. It’s also the addictive part of cheese that makes you want to come back for more.
  • Gelatin
    Gelatin is a protein obtained by boiling skin, tendons, ligaments or bones of cows and pigs. Jello and marshmallow is generally made with gelatin. Some vitamin capsules are also made from gelatin
  • Cochineal. Carminic Acid.
    This is actually crushed female cochineal beetle. It makes a red dye that is used as food coloring and can be found anywhere from apple sauce to hard candy.
  • Lactose
    Milk sugar that is a common and well known allergen. Oddly enough it is still added to baked goods and other food products.
  • Whey
    Also a milk protein. Whey is found just about everywhere including breads, cookies, cakes, etc.
  • Caesar Salad Dressing
    Caesar salad dressing actually has anchovies. Turns out the that “original” Caesar dressing recipe did not have anchovies but were added at some point when the kitchen ran out of ingredients and the chef made do with what he had (which included anchovies). Somehow it stuck and is now a common thing.

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Power Tek Fire Talon Multi-tool Pocket Knife Review!

Power Tek Fire Talon Multi-tool Pocket Knife ftd

Quick confession: I love gadgets. That goes double for cool, useful and heavy duty gadgets. The Power Tek Fire Talon Multi-tool Pocket Knife fits all 3, so I was pretty excited to get one and test it out. I’ve always had the smaller Swiss Victorinox knives, but never anything quite as solid and serious as this one. Let’s look at some of its features.

Power Tek Fire Talon Multi-tool Pocket Knife Collage

Power Tek Fire Talon Multi-tool Pocket Knife

Product Features:

  • Knife includes: Combo Knife, Spring-loaded Needlenose Pliers w/ Wire Cutters, Wire Strippers, Spring-loaded Scissors, Can opener, Phillips and flathead screwdrivers and 2 LED lights
  • A 3-inch, self-locking, stainless steel 3Cr13 knife blade with a serrated base
  • Professional grade scissors
  • Easy to use wire-strippers
  • 2 thoughtfully placed LED lights, one at each end so you can have light using any tool in the knife
  • Rubber handles for extra grip
  • Nice nylon carrying case, which you can put on a belt
  •  30 day money-back 100% satisfaction guarantee

Continue Reading…

Francois et Mimi Hammock Two-Tier Fruit Bowl Review!

Francois et Mimi Hammock Two-Tier Fruit Bowl Review

I love fruit. Always have. I have a problem with fruit though, if I don’t see it in front of me, I don’t remember to actually eat any. Half the time if I put fruit in the refrigerator or on the counter, I completely forget about it until it’s too late and it needs to be thrown out. That drives me crazy because it’s just so wasteful and you only find out that the fruit has spoiled just when you would love some most. To my great delight, I got the Francois et Mimi Hammock Two-Tier Fruit Bowl.

Francois et Mimi Hammock Two-Tier Fruit Bowl

Francois et Mimi Hammock Two-Tier Fruit Bowl

Product Features:

  • Two tiers so you can separate fruits and veggies
  • Small footprint to easily fit on counter tops
  • Beautiful chrome finish
  • Sturdy design that can handle a lot of fruit
  • Really cool hammock design that swings for a while whenever you put fruit in or out
  • Measures approximately 14.5″ assembled in height, 13″ in width

Continue Reading…

InstaNatural Dead Sea Mud Facial Mask Review!

InstaNatural Dead Sea Mud Facial Mask - FTD

I’ve always been curious about the Dead Sea ever since my husband’s trip there a few years back. He told me all about the mud masks everyone was putting on and all of the benefits that it has been known to have. So it’s been a long time coming but I finally got to try out InstaNatural’s Dead Sea Mud Mask (although you can definitely use it on more than just your face)! Let’s see if it was worth the wait.

Product Features:

  • The first ingredient is pure Dead Sea Mud
  • Additional ingredients make it even better, namely Organic Shea Butter, Organic Jojoba Oil, Organic Aloe Vera, Organic Calendula Oil, and Hickory Bark Extract
  • Contains beneficial minerals such as magnesium, sodium, bromine, potassium and calcium
  • The mud helps absorb excess oil, dirt and toxins from the skin
  • Helps remove and prevent acne, pimples and blackheads
  • When used as a body treatment, it can remove muscle aches and pains.
  • Hydrates skin for softness
  • Restores even skin tone and texture
  • Helps you achieve more vibrant, refined skin

Continue Reading…

Kiwi Citrus Smoothie Recipe

Kiwi Citrus Smoothie Recipe

After purchasing about 5 pounds of kiwi’s from Costco (their smallest size), I realized that I need to figure out some new ways of eating them. So I came up with this super simple but very light and delicious smoothie. It still has my signature high calorie content from the oatmeal, but you can always take it out for something less filling.

3-4 Peeled Kiwis
3 Peeled Clementines
1 Unpeeled diced Apple
1 Cup rolled oats
1-2 Cups water or almond milk
1 Cup of ice

Add the oatmeal, clementines, kiwis, cut up apple, water/almond milk and then ice in that order. You always want to fill up the blender from smallest to biggest sized pieces, with anything frozen at the end for best results. I also add in some hemp hearts and wheat germ for added protein and nutrition. Blend on high until the smoothie is light, airy and smooth. It’s very refreshing and different from the usual smoothies.

Nutrition Facts:
Calories: ~555
Fats: ~8g
Fiber: ~21g
Protein: ~16g

 

NorthONE Digital Tire Pressure Gauge Review!

NorthONE Digital Tire Pressure Gauge - Featured

Living in NYC, I rarely worried about things like my car’s tire pressure. Living in the suburbs of CT, however, it’s something I think about a lot. Not having properly inflated tires is bad for gas mileage, makes you more likely to snag nails/get flats and can be flat out dangerous. With winter temperatures condensing air, it’s even more important to make sure that your tires are properly inflated. I used to have one of those cheap stick pressure gauges but I thought it was time for an upgrade to a more accurate digital gauge, namely the NorthONE Digital Tire Pressure Gauge.

NorthONE Digital Tire Pressure Gauge In Use

NorthONE Digital Tire Pressure Gauge In Use

Product Features:

  • Quick and accurate tire pressure readouts
  • Nice green backlit digital display that is easy to read, even at night
  • 4 pressure settings to choose from: PSI, Bar, Kpa, or kg/cm
  •  Extremely simple one-button design to turn the gauge on/off and to change modes
  • Has a convenient auto-shut off to save battery life
  • 100% satisfaction guarantee

Continue Reading…

AYL StarLight 300 Lumens LED Ultra Bright Lantern Review!

AYL StarLight LED Lantern

I’ve been learning a lot about life outside the city since we moved from Brooklyn about 6 months ago. One biggie I have noticed is that it actually gets pitch black here during the night without constant lamp posts glaring everywhere. Turns out that having flashlights around can be extremely useful, particularly in these winter months where the sun goes down so early. I was extremely happy to test out this AYL StarLight LED Lantern and see how it worked in my new environment.

AYL Starlight Lantern

AYL Starlight Lantern

Product Features:

  • Guaranteed 100,000 hours of lifetime use!
  • 6 full days of power with continuous use
  • 300 Lumens output, which means that it’s quite bright
  • Lightweight design for easy handling
  • Water resistant so you can use it in the rain or snow
  • Designed with a hook at the bottom so you can hang it anywhere that’s convenient
  • 3 lighting modes: low, high and flashing

My Thoughts:

  • This is a must have if you don’t live in the city and is handy even if you do
  • I really liked the 3 settings so you can adjust the amount of light you need. The flashing setting is great if you are ever pulled over at the side of the road
  • The lantern is actually a lot smaller than the picture would suggest, it’s very light and easy to carry around or store away
  • The water resistant design made me feel very comfortable using it outside in the rain/snow (when it’s not completely pouring out)
  • The LED’s are super bright and eat up so little battery life that this will last a long long time, which is great because I don’t always have D batteries handy
  • Very convenient to have around the house, in the trunk of a car, camping, etc.

Continue Reading…