All about sprouts

| Cooking, My Life

Healthy and nutritious sprouts

Healthy and nutritious sprouts

For the past couple of years I’ve been trying to make healthier food choices for myself and my family. I’ve learned a lot over that time and continue to pick up little tidbits here and there.  Years ago I dated a guy who was a vegetarian and he loved sprouts. Since he always had them around the house I used to make myself cucumber, cream cheese and sprout sandwiches – oh so yummy.   I had forgotten all about those sandwiches until recently when I saw sprouting seeds for sale in the garden centre.  I bought a few packages of seeds and almost bought a sprouting tray but at the last moment decided against the sprouter which was about $25.  When I got home I jumped on to my computer and looked up how to grow sprouts.  It turned out they were really easy to start and although the sprouting trays are nice they really aren’t necessary.

Health Benefits of sprouts:

  • Rich in essential nutrients including vitamin A, C, B1, B6 and K; Iron, Phosphorous, Magnesium, Potassium, Manganese, and Calcium
  • Excellent source of enzymes
  • Contain up to 35% protein
  • Very easy to digest
  • Great for weight loss, high in fiber and low in calories

How to grow your own sprouts:

Growing sprouts in a jar

Growing sprouts in a jar

All you need is a glass jar (mason jars are great for this), cheese cloth or nylon sock (I had some new ones that I’d never worn), seeds and water.  Pour your seeds in the jar and stick your nylon sock on the top of the jar, add water, swirl around and then drain out. Do this a few times just to get rid of any dust or debris. Fill the jar with water so that it’s covering the seeds and then leave it somewhere bright but not in direct sunlight.  The following day rinse the seeds again and fill again with water.  Do this everyday (usually about 3-4 days) until you see little tails coming from the seeds.  At this point, drain as much water from the jar as possible and then just leave it.  In a couple more days your sprouts will be ready to eat and enjoy!

Cucumber, cream cheese and sprout sandwich - yum!

Cucumber, cream cheese and sprout sandwich – yum!

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Ring in Spring with Garlic

| My Life, Outdoors

Garlic in March

Garlic in March

I love this time of year. So much hope and anticipation for the fun times yet to come with the warm weather soon approaching. In Victoria we’re blessed to have mild winters which for me never gets tiring.  Growing up in Ontario with 6-7 months of cold and snow has instilled in me a general hatred towards cold weather; one that I still feel after living here in the promised land for the past 15 years.

One thing I learned to love living in Ontario was the wonderful gardens you could grow there. My mother’s garden was huge, probably about half an acre.  Oh how I used to love watching her garden go from a pile of dirt to a medley of incredible fruit and veggies in a matter of months.

Now that I finally have a “deer free” area, I have my own very tiny chunk of land to grow a garden.  Even though it’s small, it has a southern exposure with a beautiful rock wall as a wind guard and protector. We just moved to this house about a year ago so last year was my first attempt at a real garden – overall, it was generally successful but I hope to have better results this year.

So, what’s with the garlic? We’ll it’s the first beautiful green thing to shoot through the soil this winter/spring.  It just looks so lush it’s hard to believe it’s still March. And well, I have an embarrassing thing to admit; last year I planted my first garlic bunch in June… turns out it won’t grow if you plant it then. I was asking my very knowledgeable friend and co-worker something about Garlic early last summer and she said “you didn’t plant garlic this summer did you” and I looked her square in the eye and said “no, of course not”. Yes, even though I’m a complete amateur, I was too embarrassed to admit the truth to her.  So later this past fall, that same friend gave me some of her beautiful garlic bulbs and I planted the cloves. Now, that I have these gorgeous plants coming up in my garden I feel triumphant. I can’t wait to pick them now; I’m already planning all my recipes out for the summer harvest.

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Craft stick dolls

| Crafts & DIY

Craft stick dolls

Craft stick dolls

Aren’t these little sweeties just the cutest things!  Of course, like all my projects, I found this on Pinterest.  Here’s the original post – which is fabulous by the way.

I have a 6 year old daughter who’s an only child and I’m always on the search for ways to keep her entertained – since I’m not only mom but also her full time playmate.  She has an incredible imagination (as most only children do) so as soon as I saw these cuties I knew I had to make some.

All you need is some washi tape, sharpies and coloured markers that don’t bleed too much (Le Pen markers by Marvy are wonderful for this). Just wrap a few pieces of tape around the stick, draw the head and legs above and below the tape and then add the detailing for the shirt and skirt on top of the washi tape. That’s pretty much it. What a quick and fun project! You could spend much more time on these then I did and make them quite intricate by adding ribbon, buttons, lace, felt and more.  I’m sure when Noelle see’s them she’ll want to make some friends for these sweet dollies herself!

Later, Noelle decided that they needed a town so I took a cardboard box apart and drew a little village background for her.  As I sit here writing this post I can hear her playing with them all in the other room.

The dolls playing in their custom made town.

The dolls playing in their custom made town.

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Project Life…download this FREE printable

| Design & Technology, For the Home

Journaling cards great for project life or scrapbooking.

Journaling cards – great for project life or scrapbooking.

Click here to download your free printable.

Click here to download your free printable.

I have to admit that I’m pretty bad at recording all the events of our life.  If it wasn’t for the fact that my camera automatically adds dates to my photo files I wouldn’t have a record of what was actually happening at the various stages of our lives. Scrapbooking… forget it – that’s way too much for me to take on. You’d think that scrapbooking would be a perfect outlet for my creative energy but no, I think that there’s just too many options and I find it overwhelming.

Recently one of my co-workers turned me onto Project Life – now this is way more my speed. Essentially, it’s a really quick and easy way to record the events and memories over your life.  For more info check out the creator’s website: http://www.beckyhiggins.com/products/what-is-project-life.php. I just love the concept but honestly, even remembering to do something that probably takes about 30 minutes once a week is just too much of a commitment for me – I suck at routine (just ask my husband).

One thing that I really love about Project Life is that it is still meant to look pretty and I’m all about pretty.  If you checkout the Becky Higgins website, you’ll see that she has some beautiful kits for creating your own Project Life: http://www.beckyhiggins.com/products/. Since I love design, I couldn’t help but try my hand at creating my own Project Life cards.  Turns out it was pretty fun.  Now maybe that I have some fun designs I have less reason to put off creating my own Project Life – I’ll let you know how (but more likely “if”) that turns out.  In the meantime, you can download my free template designs for your own Project Life here.  Have fun!

For the full 12 piece set of this design, you can purchase it from my Etsy site here.

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