Welcome to Creatively HomeMade!

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Welcome to Creatively HomeMade. This is a collaboration of the various hobbies, talents, and interests that I have and want to share with others. I’m always looking for new ways, cheaper ways, better ways, quicker ways, time-tested ways of doing things. Once tried and tested, these creative ideas will be posted.

If you have any beneficial comments or suggestions, ideas or tips and tricks you have experienced, please remember to share them as if you were a guest in my home.

My hope is that Creatively HomeMade will inspire you to beautify your life one idea at a time. It also gives me a place to keep what I have learned in one blog. Enjoy!

Space Room ~ Great Theater Room

Over the years we have used our creativity in many ways to try new things with our homes we’ve lived in. We know someday we will retire, move back home and have a real permanent home. In the meantime, we’ve had a lot of fun trying different things to see what we want or don’t want in the last home we hope to own.

One of those fun things we tried was creating a Space Room in our Master Bedroom. I wouldn’t recommend this in a master bedroom, but we plan to do something very similar in our theater room. Only instead of painting the ceiling, we’ll actually use LED lights to create constellations.

ceiling in bedroom

Bedroom Ceiling

First of all, we painted all 5 walls, (yep the ceiling too) with a high gloss black paint. We gave it 2 coats. Everything was so shiny you could almost see yourself in the walls. This idea came from a friend of my husband’s who had done this, and he said it was a very awesome effect.

Next, we bought a bunch of colors of spray paint, blue, yellow, white, red, orange, green etc. We didn’t use neon colors, but that could be spectacular.

We followed the technique used by Jonathan Harris, and you watch the 4 minute here from Youtube.  Note that he used a white background, and we used high gloss black.  Great 4 minute tutorial.

We covered ourselves from head to toe in protective clothing and kept the doors closed to this room for 3 days after finishing. Once we started this project, we spray painted till we were done. It took us almost a full day to do this, but we didn’t want the particles of spray paint floating into other rooms. Our carpet was covered in paint tarps and taped to the baseboards.

We practiced first on poster paper, and let each of the kids created their own space paints or whatever they desired.  We had pyramids, wolves and trees.  It was a great family project where each kid came away feeling on top of the world because their paintings were so awesome.  Unfortunately, they have their own paintings now, or we have them in a box waiting to move to our permanent home.  This one was hanging on our wall.

Space Painting

Space Painting

But here are some pictures from our master bedroom.  And just so you know, it took only 2 coats of Kilz white paint to cover up the this masterpiece once we listed that house for sale.

Space Painted Walls

Space Painted Walls

Space Painted Walls

Our Master Bedroom Masterpiece

 

Delectable Carrot Cake Jam

My husband absolutely positively loves carrot cake.  Just a month ago we found a 4-layer one for less than most stores have a two layer carrot cake for.  Yeah, of course we bought it, and enjoyed every last bite.

When hubby had a business trip coming up, I took advantage of the extra free time I would have and decided to make homemade carrot cake jam just for him.

Carrot Cake Jam

I scoured through Pinterest and found several delicious recipes worthy of trying. However, I modified and took from each and came up with my own version.

The ultimate test came when we had our weekly homemade hot delicious whole wheat bread served with real butter and the newly made carrot cake jam.  My husband really really liked it a lot.  It comes in a close second behind that 4 layer carrot cake we ate a month ago.

Here’s my recipe. Has a very fall flavor taste to it, but great year round.

Makes approximately 6 half-pint jars.

Carrot Cake Jam

Ingredients:

  1. 2 cups peeled and grated carrots (about 4 or 5)
  2. 1 cup peeled and diced Granny Smith apple (1 medium)
  3. 1 20 oz. can of crushed pineapple with juice (I use the one packed in its own juice)
  4. 3 tablespoons lemon concentrate
  5. 1 to 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon (depends on how well you like cinnamon, I used the       1 1/2 teaspoons)
  6. 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  7. 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
  8. 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  9. 3 tablespoons powdered pectin for low sugar recipes
  10. 4 cups sugar
  11. 1 tablespoon molasses
  12. 1 teaspoon vanilla
  13. 1/3 cup shredded coconut

Directions:

  • In a large and deep pan combine grated carrots, diced apple, pineapple with juice, lemon juice and spices.  Bring mixture to boil over high heat, stirring frequently.  Reduce heat to medium and cover. Boil gently, stir occasionally for 20 minutes.
  • Remove from head and immediately sprinkle in pectin and whisk briskly until completely dissolved. Return to heat and bring to a boil stirring continuously.  Add sugar and molasses all at once and return to a full rolling boil, stirring constantly.  Continue to cook at a full rolling boil and while stirring constantly, boil for 1 minute.  Remove pan from heat, skim off any foam, stir in vanilla and coconut.
  • Carefully ladle hot jam into hot sterilized jars, leaving 1/4 inch headspace.  Remove any air bubbles and adjust headspace by adding or removing jam.  Wipe rim clean and center lid (flat) on jar.  Tightly screw band/rim on jar.
  • Place in hot water bath, making sure each jar is completely covered with water.  Bring to a boil, then process for 10 minutes.  Remove canner lid and wait 5 minutes.  Remove jars, cool on wire racks.

Carrot Cake Jam

Tips:

To sterilize jars I wash my jars either by hand or in dishwasher.  Then I get a 10 inch metal cake pan filled half way with water.  I place my jars upside down in the pan and place pan on stove burner.  I turn the heat to medium high so it is lightly boiling.  Be sure to keep an eye on the bottles as sometimes one or more jars will suck up the water into the pan causing all other jars to be in a dry pan.  Do Not let this happen as it will lead to broken jars.  You may want to turn heat down to medium once water starts to boil.

To sterilize my flats/or lids I get another 10 inch metal cake pan and place them rubber side down in the pan with water and keep them at a low boil until I’m ready to place on the jars.

You can substitute the Granny Smith apple for another tart apple of your choice, or with a pear. You can add crystallized ginger instead of powered ginger.  You can add raisins, but they will swell in the jam and be more like grapes than raisins.

Oil Pulling ~ Peroxide Pulling

OK, so there is a new Ayurvedic healing tradition that is circulating around right now called Oil Pulling.  Basically you take 1 tablespoon of Sunflower, Olive, Sesame or Coconut oil and swish it around in your mouth for 20 minutes then spit it out.  By doing so your teeth are supposed to get whiter, your gums pinker, toxins eliminated from your body, your digestive system working better, metabolism increased, weight loss, etc. etc.

Sunflower Oil

Sunflower Oil

I figured, what the heck, I have Sunflower Oil at home, won’t cost me a dime to try.  After about 10 days I’ve decided it isn’t for me.  My teeth actually got more yellow, my gums didn’t appear any more pink than before trying this, and nothing else improved.

So now, instead of swishing oil in my mouth for 20 minutes, I am swishing 35% food grade hydrogen peroxide diluted to 3% in my mouth.  I swish about 1 tablespoon for about 10 minutes.  Just the first day alone my teeth were whiter than ever.  Of course, that oil did a number on them despite my normal dental hygiene routine.  Some say that just swishing for a minute each day is sufficient.  Hydrogen peroxide will kill the bad bacteria, help stimulate and keep the gums healthy, and help with halitosis.  When you first begin, you might find your gums turning white.  Supposedly it is from the bacteria on your gums, and will return to their normal color within 30 minutes or so.  Be warned that this can become foamy as well.

Hydrogen Peroxide 3%

Hydrogen Peroxide 3%

During this time, I ended up having a filling fall out of my tooth.  My dentist is a 3 hour drive one way away.  This was not happening.  I decided that while I was scoping out new dentists, I would give Coconut Oil Pulling a try.  My son had been doing this, and since he was studying to be a dentist, I thought why not.  If he recommends it, I’ll try it.  I must say, I was very very consistent at doing this daily for an entire 30 days.

Coconut Oil

Coconut Oil

Within the first 3 days, I no longer had any sensitivity to the tooth where the filling fell out.  Within the first 7 days, my teeth were noticeably whiter.  At the 2 week mark, my gums were pinker, healthier looking.  By the end of 30 days, I was so hooked on the Oil Pulling with Coconut Oil, that I’ve kept on doing it about 5 days a week now, and it’s been 10 months.

I honestly can say that enamel is starting to form where the filling fell out, but you can obviously tell there is something missing.  I don’t have any rough edges where it fell out.  I’ve had other sensitivity issues I felt were cavities starting to form.  During those times I would also rinse with either salt water or hydrogen peroxide (3%) just to make sure all was OK.  I don’t think I need to see a dentist.

Another one of my sons felt like he was getting a cavity.  No dental insurance.  I told him about Oil Pulling with Coconut Oil.  His sensitivity was gone within 7 days, and he doesn’t think he needs to see a dentist now.

I don’t think my teeth got any whiter by oil pulling.  Regular brushing with my homemade toothpaste, and rinsing with hydrogen peroxide has been the best for this.  On the other hand, my gums that were receding at an alarming rate have slowed down, and the dentist did prove through x-rays that my gums have actually started to regrow and filling in where they had receded.  So Yeah.  I’m sold on Oil Pulling with Coconut Oil.

DIY Leave-in Hair Conditioner

Just got back from having my hair “trimmed.” Looks more like major haircut. Anyways, hairdresser said my hair was dry, not too bad, but could use a good leave-in hair conditioner. Of course, she wanted me to purchase their salon favorite, but I opted to trying some other options…DIY.

Here’s one that is floating around Pinterest that sounded good enough to try.

Ingredients
6 oz. Distilled water
1 oz. Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1 oz. Your favorite conditioner

Directions
Pour everything into a spray bottle. Shake well. Apply.

Spray Bottle

Spray Bottle

oliveoil

Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Color Me Happy Conditioner

Color Me Happy Conditioner

It was easy enough to mixup. Application not so well…spray bottle got clogged up. So I applied like I would any other leave-in conditioner by applying a small amount in the palm of my hand, rubbing hands together then rubbed through hair and combed out with wide tooth comb.

After first application I didn’t feel like my hair was silky soft, but definitely softer and less dry than prior to using. Unfortunately, my bangs look greasy. Picture is several hours later.

I’ll still be working with application process, and trying to find something better.

Fresh HomeMade Air Freshener

When I moved 2 years ago, the realtor told us to make sure we freshened our house with the scent of lemon.  It was the one scent that when people walk through a house will make them think “new” “clean” “fresh”.  They claim it makes a big difference in selling a house.  Who knew lemons had such power.

Lemons

Lemons

In order to do that, we had a dicken’s of a time trying to find anything lemon period.

I just stumbled across this cool way to make your own homemade air freshener.  It can be any scent you like, but I’m going lemon when I sell my next house.

Get a spray bottle that will hold two cups.  It’s best if you have the sprayer adjustable for fine misting.

Spray Bottle

Spray Bottle

Go to your favorite place to purchase essential oils, or health food store to get natural lemon oil.

Natural Lemon Oil

Natural Lemon Oil

Fill the spray bottle with two cups of distilled water.  (Cuts back on clogging up the nozzle.)

Distilled Water

Distilled Water

Add 6 drops of your favorite essential oil, or the natural lemon oil.  Shake till well blended, and spray away.  Enjoy the Fresh HomeMade Air Freshener.

spray

High Protein High Fiber Granola Cereal

Fiber One Protein Cereal is a new product that provides one with whole grains, high protein, and high fiber.  Combined with milk, you get a whopping 10 grams of protein.

Nutritional Facts

This cereal is a great tasting granola type cereal.  It includes soy which helps provide much of the protein.  The Cranberry Almond flavor smells and tastes wonderfully fresh.  It is delicious.

I sometimes get a hankering for a bowl of cereal at night.  Fiber One Protein fits that bill.  I find I eat less of this cereal than others.  Probably because it fills me up faster due to the whole grains and fiber.

This would make an excellent afternoon snack for kids when they come home from school, or to eat prior to a sports practice or game.  They would have the energy they need to complete their tasks at hand.  I’ve even heard of adults eating a bowl of this cereal on their afternoon breaks to help them get through the rest of their day at work.


My suggestion, if you’re feeling down in the dumps, or sluggish and need an extra boost, eat a bowl of this cereal rather than grabbing a candy bar.  You’ll experience more energy and clarity of mind.  (OK, that’s just how I feel when I eat it.  Your experience may be different.)

Oh, and BTW, it doesn’t go soggy in milk.

Disclaimer:  I GotItFree from Bzzagent.  However, the opinions of this post are my own.

Homemade Cottage Cheese

Homemade Cottage Cheese

 Too many times I wish I had cottage cheese in my fridge for one recipe or another, and find I am completely out.  I don’t want to run to the store just for cottage cheese.  So I started looking on line for ways to make my own at home.  After some tweaking, here is what I’ve come up with.  I’ve eaten it plain, and in salads, and other dishes that call for cottage cheese.  It tastes great.
I’ve also read that when you get the munchies at night, cottage cheese is a good thing to eat.  It helps keep your metabolism working all night, without keeping you awake.

Homemade Cottage Cheese 

1 gallon milk (I’ve used whole milk and 2% and personally prefer 2%)
1 gallon milk makes approximately 4 cups.

Heat this in a pan that will hold more than 1 gallon of liquid.  Heat on medium heat to 180 degrees, or just to the boiling point.  Stir to keep from scalding on the bottom.

Heat Milk to 180 degrees

Once milk reaches 180 degrees, stir in 3/4 cup vinegar slowly.  (I’ve tried apple cider vinegar and white vinegar.  The white vinegar tastes better to me.)

Stir in Vinegar

Remove from heat and let stand 10 minutes.  You will see it start to curdle right away.

Milk starts to form Curds

Pour this through a cheese cloth or mesh strainer to separate the curds and whey.  You can keep the whey and use it later in just about anything item you will make that calls for water, soups, cakes, smoothies, etc.

Pour Milk through strainer to separate curds and whey
Whey to be used in other foods

Remove the whey container once drained.  Then rinse with cold water.

Rinse Cottage Cheese with Cold Water
Sprinkle with Salt to taste

Sprinkle with salt to taste, and place in an air tight container until you are ready to use.  Can be used immediately.  If you want a creamier cottage cheese, add a couple of tablespoons of half&half or cream. (I’ve also added plain Greek Yogurt, and my homemade Greek Yogurt with  great results.)

Finished Product
Cottage Cheese
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