April 30, 2012

Teaming up with Whippy

April 30, 2012

Have you noticed that things here at Cantaloupe Corner are looking fresh and new? We have a new Logo, new blog, and new designs!!! I want to tell you all about it but I have a more important mission for today. The new stuff will have to wait, just a little teensy bit longer.

I was telling you before how Whippy Cake’s Becki is earning money to make a trip to Africa with an organization called Heart for Africa.

Well, I have some EPIC EXCITING news!  Cantaloupe Corner is teaming up with Whippy Cake! oh YEAH!

I have designed some sweet-as-a-cupcake women’s shirts for Becki and all of the proceeds from these shirts go directly to Heart for Africa!

The design features  Africa with the signature Whippy Cake stripes and a heart where Swaziland is, (that’s where she will be going to help) and the inspirational words: Share Hope, Spread Love.

Heart for Africa is doing just that, sharing hope and spreading love to those sweet little children. Watch the videos, look into those eyes of those tiny children that have known more struggles in their short lives that we may ever know. If you can’t go to Africa yourself to help out those sweet little ones, help Becki get there to spread our love to them and to share hope for a brighter future.

Becki also has some exquisite Whippy Cake appliques, head wraps, earrings, and she is always adding new fashionable items to her Etsy shop. And all of the proceeds go to Heart for Africa! Help her out. Make this dream of hers come true so that she can share hope with those sweet kids!

Get clicking!

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April 26, 2012

2 Cool science experiments to do with your kids

April 26, 2012

I have this boy. He is kind of a genius, for a 5 year old. I’m way biased because I’m his mom but he really is a smarty. His latest venture is anything involving Science. Earth science is his fave. He is fascinated by volcanoes, caves, rocks, earthquakes. . .

We took a trip to Carlsbad Caverns in November and he was in absolute heaven. He ogled at the massive cave formations and spouted off random cave facts to anyone who would listen. Even I was like “Whoa! Where did you learn all this stuff!” 

I’m a proud mom.

When we have free time at home between school, meals, games, and homework, we love to do science experiments!

Here were a couple of our favorites we have done:

Experiment #1: Oobleck

A lesson in states of matter and surface tension.

-1 part cornstarch

-1.5 to 2 parts water

Mix these ingredients together.  Add more water or cornstarch to get the desired consistency. You can also add a few drops of food coloring if you want. Ours started out really wet and drippy and it made a huge mess but our boys had a BLAST getting dirty. Wait, only one boy got dirty. Ry didn’t want his hands to get messy so he dipped in one finger and then washed his hands and didn’t want anything else to do with the oobleck.

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We talked about how the oobleck went from liquid to solid and back to liquid. We also experimented with the surface tension by punching it! It’s a great stress reliever.

I finally had to drag Simon away from the oobleck once he was covered in the stuff and it was getting dry and crumbly. It is so fun and since it is just corn starch and water it is completely non-toxic and safe. And it sure helps that it is easy to clean out of kids clothes. Simon was COVERED in this stuff. We even had to wash it out of his hair! He played for over an hour before I had to clean him up and send him off to bed.

And if you are up for even more fun with oobleck, you can make it dance!! Seriously! We don’t have a subwoofer to try it out but check out this cool video:

 

Science is so weird, and amazing!

 

Experiment #2: The Naked Egg

Our next experiment was learning about chemical reactions. My hubby cleaned his sister’s pool floor with acid and Simon was so interested in how it worked and why the acid made bubbles and bad smells. So I thought this experiment was perfect to answer some of his questions.

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This experiment is: How to remove an eggshell without cracking it.

-1 egg

-white vinegar

-small glass cup or jar

Place the egg in the jar and cover it with vinegar. Ask your child what they see happening when you put the egg in the vinegar.

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Bubbles! The acidic vinegar is reacting with the eggshell.

I’ll let him tell you all about it.

Here’s what’s happening: The acetic acid in the vinegar breaks down the solid calcium carbonate that make up the egg’s shell. When the calcium carbonate breaks down the calcium ions are now free and the carbonate goes into making carbon dioxide, which are those little bubbles that you see all over the egg.

Let the egg sit in water for 24 hours and then carefully remove the egg and replace the old vinegar with fresh new vinegar. Let it sit for another day or 2 and then you can carefully rinse of the egg. Be gentle. Once you have all of the shell off it will look a little something like this:

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If you hold it up to the light you can see the yolk inside. Pretty cool, right?

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I wish I had photos of all of the fun experiments we do together. I have a budding scientist on my hands!

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April 23, 2012

Chewy Plum Granola Bites recipe

April 23, 2012

Plum bites

. We all know that dried plums are called prunes. Prune is one of the ugliest words in the English language. It sounds like old, smelly, flatulent food that grandma ate to “stay regular”. Ok, now wipe that image from your mind (if you can) and embrace your inner granny! Prunes are just dried plums. That’s it. Really. They are like raisins, only bigger. They don’t smell, and it’s not just grandma that eats them. They are sweet and delicious and so good for you.

Prunes are good for your heart and bones and they can help you stay skinny because they are loaded with fiber and they keep your stomach full longer. Did I mention they are sweet and delicious?

Here’s a quick, easy, pick-me-up recipe for those yummy little dried plums (I still can’t bring myself to say “prunes”.)

 

Chewy Plum Granola Bites

1 C Prunes (a.k.a. dried plums)

1 C Rolled oats

1 Tbs. Fruit Sweetened Jelly (I used Polaner raspberry jelly but you can use whatever flavor you like.)

2T Almond Butter

 

Directions:

Put it all in your food processor and process it until it either all sticks to the sides and you can’t process it anymore (that’s what happened to me in my Ninja), or if your processor is better than mine you can mix it as long as you like. This recipe probably won’t work in a typical kitchen blender.

You may want to cover and refrigerate it for 30 minutes to make it easier to work with. I’m a lazy cook so I skipped this step.

Form the mixture into small bite-sized balls.

Eat, and be healthy!

Store leftovers covered in the fridge. These should keep for quite a while, about 2 weeks or more.

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April 16, 2012

Beet Berry Smoothie recipe

April 16, 2012

We used to grow beats in our garden when I was a little girl and I remember loving them. We even sautéed the beet greens like spinach and ate them with vinegar. It has been quite a while since I thought back on these memories because my family never eats beets. Not that we don’t like them. They are just one of the foods that have been forgotten in our household.

Now I have a recipe that is bringing beets back!

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Why beets? These deep red root veggies are known to be blood purifiers, blood builders and they help in the creation of blood cells. And if you have beet juice everyday it can even bring down your high cholesterol (source). They also contain folate, vitamin C, and potassium, iron, magnesium, niacin and more vitamins and minerals! The beet greens also contain anti-oxidants, and vitamin A.

In other words, beets are a nutritional powerhouse! They have a sweet earthy flavor that fits perfectly into our new smoothie recipe. The health benefits in this smoothie go beyond beets too. There’s blueberries, bananas, orange juice, raw honey . . . Healthy tastes so good!

 

Beet Berry smoothie

Beet Berry Smoothie

1/3 C Chopped beets (raw)

1/2 C Orange juice

1/2 Banana

1/2 C Frozen blueberries

1 tsp. Raw Honey

1/4 C Silk Coconutmilk (or milk of your choice)

2 or 3 beet green leaves or small handful of Spinach

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Add all ingredients to a blender of food processor and blend for about a minute or until smooth.

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Raw honey can be pricey but it is worth the investment in your health. And I think it tastes so much better than pasteurized honey.

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Enjoy!

 

The beets will probably turn your hands pink for a day. And don’t freak out if you have pink pee for a day or two. (Sorry if that is TMI but it can be shocking if you don’t expect it.)

This recipe was so yummy my little 3 year old finished his cup and asked for more! This one’s a keeper!

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April 13, 2012

Before and After : Wall Stencil

April 13, 2012
We have been living in the same house for almost 8 years now. 8 whole years! It seems like we just moved in a year ago. Ever since the first day we moved in we had been planning on painting the interior of the house. We have painted our bedroom twice, and just about every other room in the house. We even did our boys room in lime green!
And now, 8 years after we talked about painting the living room I finally made it happen!
Here is the terrible before picture. In all of it’s messy pre-construction glory! Yowzah!
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We picked out a pretty khaki grey called Stonington from Valspar. It is light enough to keep our room from looking like a cave since we don’t have a lot of natural light in this room, and it adds richness and warmth. It’s the perfect mix of grey with a little bit of tan.
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April 10, 2012

German Chocolate “Green” Smoothie

April 10, 2012

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I’m in the last week of an 8 week health challenge. My sisters, brother-in-laws, and few others have been in on it too. It is a whole life health challenge and the absolute hardest part of this challenge is that we aren’t supposed to eat sugar. No Oreo cookies, no candy bars, no Easter Cadbury Mini Eggs!! The first 2 weeks I had to give all I had to keep from diving in to the little bag of peanut butter M&Ms I had “hidden” from myself in the freezer. All of the other junk food was banished to the garbage can or the garage so I wouldn’t be tempted to eat it. Out of sight, out of mind. kind of.  I just couldn’t talk myself into throwing out perfectly good peanut butter M&Ms.

Finding ways to calm my sweet tooth has been oodles more fun that I thought it would be. I still limit sugars in general as much as I can (including all artificial sweeteners and some natural sugars) but when I just can’t say no I have found that a nutrient rich sweet treat is 100 times more satisfying than that frozen bag of M&Ms.

Since green smoothies are my new love I thought I would shake it up a bit (pun intended) and make it CHOCOLATE! Because inside the new healthier me there is still a raging chocoholic that I have to please.

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German Chocolate “Green” Smoothie

1 banana

1/4 C. Coconut flakes

1/4 C. Walnuts

1 1/2 C. Spinach

3 T. Unsweetened cocoa powder

2T Real maple syrup  (or honey)

3/4 C. Milk of your choice (I used Silk Coconutmilk)

1 C. Ice

 

Put it all in your blender/food processor (mine is a Ninja) and blend until smooth. (The coconut flakes take the longest to blend up.)

Add more ice if desired.

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The spinach, walnuts, and coconut and super foods packed with healthy fats, vitamins and minerals. The banana not only makes this smoothie sweet but it gives you a potassium boost. And we all know that a little chocolate can be good for you too. It has cancer and age fighting antioxidants. (yeah baby!)

Fight wrinkles and cancer and get an energy boost, all from a yummy German Chocolate “milk shake”? yes please!

Want more healthy yummy smoothie goodness? Check our Lemon Colada Smoothie, and my favorite Super Power Green Smoothie.

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April 2, 2012

Whippy[4]Africa

April 2, 2012

I know this girl, she’s . . .  well. . . completely and utterly INSPIRING! You probably know her too.

She is Becki from Whippy Cake.  I’m lucky enough to be able to call her my friend. She is one of the people that inspired me to start my own business.This girl has a way of making someone feel like they are worth a million trillion dollars. ( And she also rocks her pixie cut like nobody’s business.)

She has done so much to inspire others and now she is planning a trip to Africa to help and inspire over there too. She is working with an organization called Heart for Africa and she is earning money for this great cause and so she can go spread some of her love to the orphaned children in Swaziland. Talk about inspiring, right?

She needs our help!

She has set up a Whippy[4]Africa Etsy shop dedicated solely to earning money for Heart for Africa. You can pick up a simple, chic headband, head wrap, or one of her one unique Whippy Cake appliques. And 100% of the proceeds go toward Heart for Africa.

 

She is also selling gift sets on her Whippy Cake website. Each set has a Vintage Rose Wrap, a Whippy Cake applique, and a cute pair of earrings!

Aaaaannnnndddd, She is also GIVING AWAY two gift sets on her blog.  Enter her giveaway HERE. You have nothing to lose!

This is my pick I just bought: The Inspire Change set. I love the grey and mustard colors and the grey hounds tooth print head wrap will look smokin’ in my hair. It’s a cute way to hide a bad hair day. And I have those, often. These curls have a mind of their own.

 

And if you aren’t into the headband craze, or if you just want to give a little extra, you can also donate to her cause.

This is a win-win people. Cute stuff for you, money for orphans, and Becki gets to have a life-changing experience, all thanks to you! So get over there and buy some stuff!

Thank you!!

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