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Raspberry Tea

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When I was growing up, my mom always had Kool-Aid in the house for us to drink. Sometimes we even got tang! Very rarely, however, did we drink pop. We are attempting to go healthier here. I don’t like my kids to drink pop and I always felt they didn’t need the sugar in Kool-Aid. We are also trying to stay away from food dyes. My husband drinks Mountain Dew like water. When he isn’t drinking that its red Kool-Aid. The kids are always asking me for Kool-Aid so I have been trying to come up with a healthier alternative. I found an alternative that we are all happy with: raspberry tea! I use sugar to sweeten it because we found out that aspartame was causing my 10-year-old son to have a tic. I haven’t tried Stevia with him yet but I will this summer. Then I can observe him to make sure the Stevia won’t contribute to any tics. At least this tea has half the sugar of Kool-Aid and no food dyes. I have made it using honey as well.

Here’s how I make it:

I run water though my 4 cup coffee maker. Then I let 4 raspberry tea bags steep for a few minutes.

I add 1/2 cup of sugar and enough water to make 1/2 gallon of tea . Stir and enjoy.

While I encourage my kids to drink water every day this is a nice treat for them. It has no preservatives and no food dyes. I make this or some lemonade about once a week (usually on the weekends). We like trying different kinds of tea. Black cherry is one the kids enjoy, also. There is a pomegranate pizzazz that I can’t wait to try! Blueberry is another we would like to try!

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Homemade Yogurt – in my Excalibur dehydrator

Today, after getting the kids off to school two hours late and finishing my grocery shopping, I decided it was time to try making yogurt in my Excalibur dehydrator. I have made yogurt several times before with varying results. I tried making it in the crockpot, but that didn’t work out very well for me. I made it in a cooler (with several mason jars of hot water) and had better results with that method. I finally got my Excalibur dehydrator last week so it is time to try making yogurt in it. The dehydrator should keep the yogurt at a fairly constant temperature. I am hopeful for good results. My kids love yogurt and they can have it more often if this method works well.

Results:

The yogurt turned out more runny that I had hoped. Aaron and I liked it, but the twins did not. I think it was not sweet enough for them.

I have made another batch and left this one in for 8 hours instead of 6. I think it is a little thicker, but I think I will let it go for 10 hours next time. I added 1 teaspoon of vanilla and 1 tablespoon of sugar to each pint of yogurt. It tastes great! Even the girls liked this batch. When I make the next batch I will add some dehydrated fruit. This will also make the yogurt thicker. Right now we don’t have dried fruit in the house – the kids have eaten it all!

Homemade Grass Stain Remover

One day my DS forgot to take his shorts to school for soccer practice. Needless to say, he came home with grass stains on both knees! I got online and searched for a homemade grass stain remover. Of course, I found all kinds of “possible” stain removers. I decided to try one that sounded promising, was easy to make, and consisted of ingredients I (normally) have in the house: dish soap and hydrogen peroxide. Normally I have hydrogen peroxide in the house, but I had run out. It was almost two weeks before I remembered to pick some up! By this time I thought the stain had probably really set in. This would be a real test!

I mixed two parts hydrogen peroxide with one part dish soap. I scrubbed this into the stains with a brush. I was surprised when the stains looked like they had disappeared! The jeans are in the washer as I am writing this and I can’t wait to see the results when they come out of the washer! I wonder what other stains this will work on! I am keeping it in a dish by my washer so I can try it on other stains!

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