Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Kidney Bean Risotto~ Vegan

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Rooti~Tutti Fresh N' Fruity Type Vegan Pancakes

A week ago I decided to change my eating habits, changing  to a vegan diet.  Making the decision came from me using the term "vegan" loosely and not understanding the full sense of what vegan life entailed.  From what I've reseached I've come to a very subjective interpretation of what a vegan is.  That conclusion being, a vegan is not what I am.  Vegans don't just follow a strict plant only based diet, they follow a full fledged plant based everything.  From the food on their tables, to the clothes on their backs (no gators, snake skin purses or shoes, leather watches, shoes or hand bags, cow hid rugs or bear skinned rugs, no leather sofas in their homes or the cars they drive or chairs they sit in in their home).  Many of them are enviornmentalists who approach veganism on a higher consious level then my reasons.  I live life with the belief there is no set way of doing anything, so I'm not a "vegan".  I'm a woman who has given up eating meat, fish, and chicken.  I'm a woman who has replaced eating white flour to whole wheat that includes bread, rice, refined sugar to organic raw sugar,  permanently removed cows milk from her diet, follows a low fat, high protien nutrition plan.  I'm removing fried foods from my diet for the most part.  If I make a quesadilla I'm not baking it, I'm going to make it how it is supposed to be made in a skillet cooked with fat free oil in the pan. Some might feel thats frying so I'm just putting it out there now of what to expect if you should decide to visit this blog looking for 100% vegan recipes.  My diet will be mostly vegan meals, but for now, I love cheese and I'm not willing to give it up.  Eggs, no problem, milk and butter, no problem, but cheese, no can do.  If I make a spanish or italian dish I have to have cheese and a 6.00 bag of Daiya for me just isn't the same.  Instead of using Daiya, I'll be eating cheeses from the milk of grass-fed cows, goats, sheep, or yak that aren’t fed antibiotics or growth hormones.  This is new to me and I'm just sharing my journey of maintaining healthy hair from the inside, out. 

My first recipe...

Whole Wheat Vegan Pancakes

1 cup whole wheat flour
2 tsp baking powder
¼ tsp salt
2 tbsp raw sugar
1 ½ cup almond milk       
½ cup water
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp cinnamon
 I found a recipe on HappyHerbivore.com and tweeked it a bit.  My son didn't like the taste of Agave Nectar so I didn't force it on him, he ate syrup.  I also decided not to force anything on my son's they don't willing want to eat. I'll just keep my home filled with healthy snacks  fresh fruits, and sweets made from home, so no matter what they choose, it's good for them. Had I known what I just learned  while writing this blog post, researching the benefits of Agave Nectar I would have used the syrup too.  Agave has more concentrated fructose then high fructos corn syrup.  It isn't an all natural fruit sweetener as I believed before researching it's health benefits.  The real name for the natural substance from sweet fruit and honey is called Levulose not Fructose.  [Check out this article explaining more about Agave Nectar] and it will explain why moving forward I'll still use Agave Nectar, just not in my food.  My goal is to eliminate sugar altogether unless it comes from the fruit I eat...for now I'll stick with raw sugar...and I'm still researching exactly what real raw sugar is and looks like

I always let my youngest son cook along with me. I'm finding this makes him more likely to eat it healthier, because he participated in preparing it.

 I had to take over when it was time to wisk the batter
I lightly sprayed a non-fat, non-stick cooking spray
 I turned them over after about 2 minutes of being on the burner at a medium-high setting .

My son only wanted bananas on his plate...so I placed them into a the shape of a smiley face.

He didn't eat the entire plate...neither did I but I did eat all of the fruit toppings.  Whole wheat pancakes are very filling.
Kid Tested, Mother Approved! 

I added blueberries to my pancake topping as they are very beneficial to my health and [Fitness Magazines] listed them on their Top Ten Superfoods for Gorgeous Hair and Skin.

as always...


Saturday, January 28, 2012

Deva Curl Product Review

November 2011 I won a gift set of  over $100.00 worth of Deva Curl products (including their signature tote and satin scarf) from giveaway I'd entered at the Nappiology Expo this past November...yes and just now using the products.  I read Curly Girls by Lorraine Massey over a year ago and posted a book review on it.  I'd been interested in applying the curly girl method as my go to hair care regimen but shortly after got board with wash n' go's and protective styling my hair up kicked in.  Since winning the gift set ( so happy I won FULL size bottles and not samples) and cutting my hair this month, I figured now is the best time for me to put my products to some use.

The very first time I tried these my kynxx just didn't agree with them at all. When I do product reviews I stay mindful that its never the products fault if I don't get the result I want.  Many factors come into play.  One, if I use it on dry or wet hair. Two, if I have product build up from other products I've used on my hair.  Three, the amount of product I use on my hair, and four, if I'm using them in the correct manner to get the result I want to see.  The first time I used them was on wet hair, just as in this review because Deva Curl line is meant to be used for wash n'go's to give more definition the curl pattern in kinky curly hair.  That much it did...buuuuuut ask for the final result...you'll see. 

To be sure my unpleasant experience with the Deva Curl line wasn't due to previous product
build up, I cleaned and clarified my hair with Bentonite clay and ACV (apple cider vinegar).  The more I use ACV the more I'm getting used to the scent, it's an acquired scent for sure but still not one I like to smell.  [Click here to read and see application tutorial]

The clay treatment:

I towel dried with Microfiber to remove excess water making sure the product absorbed in each strand.
I never rub the towel against my hair, just pat it, hold the towel their for a few seconds until the excess water is absorbed.

Now for the Deva Curl products....

Moisture Lock

Eliminate frizz, add shine and enhance curls with this 24-48 hour moisture lock spray.

Suggested use: Mist on wet or dry hair. 
msrp $18.95

Ultra Creamy Daily Conditioner

This ultra creamy daily conditioner provides maximum hydration and is perfect for all curl types.

Suggested use: After cleansing, use fingertips to glide a generous amount through curls. Rinse. For extra hydration, reapply a small amount. Do not rinse. Follow with DevaCurl AnGel curl defining gel. 


Lavender Curl Revitalizer

A curl refresher and scalp rejuvenator infused with lavender that creates fresh and natural frizz free curls without the dehydrating effects of a dry shampoo.

Suggested use: Spray on dry hair, tilt head forward and scrunch curls in an upward motion. 
msrp: $18.95

Versatile Styler

This versatile styler provides maximum hold, texture, volume and styling control.

Suggested use: On wet hair, tilt head forward. Apply to palms and scrunch curls in an upward motion.
For extra volume, on dry hair, rub between palms and scrunch upward toward the scalp. On wet or dry hair, for root lift and support, apply product directly to scalp and massage with fingertips.
 msrp: $19.95

Curl Boost and Volumizer

A botanically enriched curl volumizer that enhances fullness and strength. Ideal for fine delicate curls.

Suggested use: Tilt head forward. Scrunch hair using upward motion to release excess water. Rub between palms and glide throughout hair.

msrp: $16.95/ 6oz Tube

Special thanks goes out to Angie Damiani of David Dalton Salon, Ft. Worth, TX

 First, I used Set It Free...I really wasn't sure which order the products are supposed to be used in.  The bottle doesn't specify but I figured since this one claimed to lock in moisture, I should use it first.

 A litte better definition but the back section of my hair that is more kynky didn't define at all.

 One Condition is very popular with Naturalistas.  The scent is similar to lemon, lime, citrus smell.  I liked it.  I applied a very generous amount to my entire head beginning with the back section of my hair, applying from root to tip. 

 One of the first things I LOVED about this stuff was the extreme amount of "slip" it provided.  Without using a comb (recommended) through out this entire process I was able to run all of my fingers through my curls without them getting caught up in my kynxx...loved it.

 As you can see, and again this could be my fault but both times I applied it, it left a white residue.  That didn't bother me because I've used products before that did the same.  I figured it would just dry clear.  My hair felt wonderful while it was wet, smelled great, and looked super shiny!

Plump and defined curls...just how I like it!

The Final Result

My hair looked great, curls were defined and hair shiny.  Only thing was it dried feeling stiff and sticky to the touch.  Could it be I used too much product?...Possibly. If you follow the CG method, and use Deva Curl products, advice would be helpful.  I have no intention in letting these products collect dust so I have to get it right!!


Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Top Knot Bun

This is a swoop around bun. I brushed the sides up into a ponytail, obviously, then just brushed my hair going around in a circle softly and pinning it in place as I brushed. This s taken on day one of me styling it. Directions on how created the Top Knot bun are below.

Next time I wear this style the ponytail will be closer to my forehead...this is really a semi-top knot bun...The process is still the same though, only the placement would change.
I had already been wearing my hair in a bun when I took these photos.  I brushed my detangled wet hair into a ponytail at the crown of my head.

I use security clips because the ponytail was done loosely.  To rid bulk in the back and underneath the completed bun I placed the clips to make it more flat in the back, instead of making the bun tighter.
 Water ,Kinky Curly Curling Custard, comb and my styling tooth brush ;o)
 This photo was taken prior to my hair cut.  The back will look shorter then the front the higher you place the pony tail on top of your head.

 I grabbed the shortest twists and pinned the ends down into the center of the bun...this creates the knot look.

I wore this style for an entire week by keeping it covered with my satin scarf...