herbs recipe tutorial

spring scent simmer- citrus, geranium, and mint

While spring sometimes looks like winter outside, I like it to smell like spring inside. My favorite way to create a lovely and refreshing spring scent is using citrus, mint, and geranium.

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Citrus Geranium Mint Simmer
dried grapefruit peel
dried spearmint
fresh lime
fresh scented geranium leaves

*Place the ingredients in a small Corningware or stainless steel pot.
*Add enough water to set the ingredients a-float.
*Set the stove burner on low.
*Let the plants do their magic by diffusing a refreshing scent into the air.
*Remember to keep checking the water level, it can evaporate fast, leaving burnt plant bits in the pan producing a not so very nice diffused smell!

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“That’s all,”
Lisa

Visit my 5 orange potatoes Instagram account for sneak peeks and daily life.

activities homemade gifts sewing tutorial

Marimo moss ball plush DIY

So, our Marimo moss ball obsession has crossed over to plush! These little guys are so easy to make and shouldn’t take longer than 30 minutes, even if you’re a beginner.

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Supplies needed: The sleeve of an old wool sweater (or wool blend, at least 80% wool), safety eyes, green and pink floss, poly-fil, scissors

To make the Marimo: 1. Wash the wool sweater in a hot wash cycle, then throw it in the dryer. 2. Cut 4 inches of the cuff part of the sleeve.

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3. Sew a running stitch around the top of the cuff, leaving about 3 inches of thread tail, go all the way around, meet at the beginning tail, knot beginning and end tail together and you will be left with a little tuft.

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4. Push the tuft inside and stitch the top closed.

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5. Add the safety eyes and make 3 hot pink stitches to make the mouth.

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This is how Marimo moss ball should be looking.

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6. Repeat the running stitch around the bottom of the moss ball, just like you did for the top.

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7. Stuff your moss ball with poly-fil or wool. 8. Pull beginning and end threads together and knot together to close. 9. Stitch closed. Done!

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Care for you Marimo- place in a jar, with a friend (they do get lonely), name them, add tissue paper water around the bottom of the jar, and display. Take excellent care and talk to them daily, this will bring you good fortune and luck.

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If you want to grow live Marimo moss balls in a water terrarium, visit here.

 ”That’s all,”
Lisa

Visit my 5 orange potatoes Instagram account for sneak peeks and daily life.

diy homemade gifts sewing tutorial

Embroider your baby or child’s artwork- DIY

My little niece was just shy of a year during the holidays this year. She was starting to experiment with markers and paints, and making little doodle scratches on paper (and herself); I thought a permanent piece of artwork would make a lovely gift for her mama this year.

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you will need: a hoop, muslin/cotton cloth, Mark-B-Gone pen, floss, needle

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I had her use the Mark-B-Gone side so I had plenty of time to embroider her lines. I gave her the fabric to draw on in the hoop so I could focus her drawings in one space. She needed time to use ALL of her senses to discover her new writing utensil, blue ink was all over her! When she finally started drawing, she didn’t have any trouble understanding where to place her doodles.

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When the fun was over, I cleaned her up, and loved what she had drawn- I saw a whale shape in water so I went with it!  I did a basic running backstitch and French knots for the design.

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I trimmed the fabric, glued down the edges, thread a ribbon through the top, and Cora’s work of art was done!  I see more of these in the future, would be fun to see how her pictures evolve through the years.

“That’s all,”
Lisa

To see our daily doings, follow my Instagram account here!

 

health healthy snacks herb herbs recipe tutorial

ginger candy and ginger syrup

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There is nothing more invigorating and warming on a cold winter day than a cup of ginger tea! It is a mild stimulant, promotes circulation, aids digestion, and is very effective for motion sickness. It is great for cramps and the perfect herb to help remedy congestion when you are under the weather.

Next time you are in the grocery, bring home a root from the produce section and try it. Not sure how to get it from it’s natural state into your teacup? It’s very easy and tasty!

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Candied Ginger and Syrup

2 1/2 tablespoons raw sugar (if you don’t want to use sugar you can use honey or fruit juice)
1/2   cup warm water
1/2   cup peeled and sliced ginger cut into 1/4″ slices
1/4   cup cinnamon
*Melt the sugar in warm water, add the ginger, and simmer on low until the slices are tender.
*Strain the syrup from the ginger, keep the syrup in a small 4 oz. jar and store in the refrigerator.
*Coat the ginger in cinnamon then place in a dehydrator at 125 degrees for about 2 hours -OR- (if you don’t want to dehydrate) store the ginger in a jar with a tight lid in the refrigerator, keeps for about 2 weeks. If you triple the recipe, it freezes well.

 

How to use the candied ginger and syrup?

1. Eat it straight from the jar (Fauna eats a lot of ginger this way).

2. Add a few pieces to your green tea (Rainy’s favorite).

3. Add a few pieces to warm lemon water- bring water to boil in a tea kettle, squeeze half a lemon into a mug, add the hot water, and sprinkle in 1-4 pieces of ginger (my favorite).

4. Add 2-4 pieces to warm water and spoon in a few teaspoons of the ginger syrup (Fauna’s favorite).

 

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For many more herbal ideas, follow my 5orangepotatoes Instagram account, I share and update daily.

“That’s all,”
Lisa

 

activities herbs homemade gifts tutorial

baby bath and shower tea

A nice, soothing, and relaxing bath tea can nourish the skin, calm the nerves, and help put babies, kids, mamas, and dads into a sweet slumber. For this tea bag I used calendula and comfrey for its benefits to the skin, lavender and rose petals for the calming aromatherapy, and catnip for relaxing qualities for the nervous system.

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Supplies needed: 1tbs. lavender buds, 1tbs. rose petals, 2tbs. calendula petals, 2tbs. comfrey, 2tbs. catnip, 20″ piece of yarn or twine, 4″ x 5 1/2″ muslin rectangle, thread, scissors

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1. Mix the herbs. 2. Fold the rectangles in half and cut a half heart. 3. Leaving inside sides together and placing the end tails (1″ to 1 1/2″) of the yarn between the hearts to form the hanger, sew a zigzag stitch around the heart, leaving a 2 inch opening for stuffing the herbs.

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4. Stuff the herbs into the heart. 5. Stitch closed with the zigzag stitch.

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Directions for use: For the bath- hang the heart on the bath tap and turn on the water to very hot to “wake up” the herbs and get the best essential oils from them, like you would for tea. Turn to lukewarm once a good tea infusion takes place. Let the heart then float in the tub, wipe skin with the heart like you would use a washcloth. For the shower- hang heart on shower head, let the warm water hit the heart. Use the heart like a washcloth and cleanse the skin while squeezing the tea out of the heart.

 baby bath

If you don’t sew, you can put this herb mix in a 6″ diameter circle of cotton cloth, bring up all of the edges and tie the herbs nice and snug inside the cloth.

“That’s all,”
Lisa

PS- for high quality, organic, and fresh herbs I order from Mountain Rose Herbs  or Horizon Herbs if I don’t already grow them in my garden.

homemade gifts tutorial

moon jar luminaries- diy

I love this time of year, the dark and cold make me want to hibernate in my cozy home, bake goodies to warm up my kitchen, and make lovely things to compliment my home. Being such a dark time, it’s the perfect time for moon gazing and bringing the celestial into the house with these little moon phase luminaries.

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Supplies: metallic gold and silver paint, wax paper, paintbrush, star glitter (gold and silver, I used Martha Stewart brand), Mod Podge or white glue, jars

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1. Paint large sections of the wax paper with the metallic paints making large swirl-like strokes. 2. While the paint is still wet, sprinkle the star glitter onto the paint. 3. Let dry.

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4. Cut out moon and star shapes. 5. Apply Mod Podge or glue to the back of the shapes and place on clean jars.

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5. Add votive candle and let the moon shine!

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“That’s all,”
Lisa