Red Rooibos Latte: Naturally Caffeine Free

by Sarah TheHealthyHomeEconomist

red rooibos latte

If you are looking to replace coffee based lattes with something that is naturally caffeine free and absolutely delicious, I would suggest that you try a (red) rooibos latte.

Rooibos lattes are very popular in coffee shops in South Africa, which makes sense given that the rooibos, or redbush, plant is native to that continent.

South Africans have traditionally used rooibos tea for centuries. The Dutch settlers in the area used it as an alternative to expensive black tea. In addition, black tea was not always available as supply was dependent on trading ships from Europe.

Also called red tea, rooibos has an earthy and a slightly nutty flavor that you will likely find extremely appealing after just a few cups. Rooibos tea benefits primarily revolve around the fact that it is naturally decaffeinated and loaded with antioxidants. Other health pluses include anti-fungal as well as anti-mutagenic properties. Rooibos is also of benefit to immune system modulation and assists with nervous tension, skin problems, and digestive complaints.

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Yarrow: Insect Repelling Herb Stronger than DEET

by Sarah TheHealthyHomeEconomist

Yarrow made into a tincture

My family recently spent the day at the Blizzard Beach waterpart at Disney World. Although we had a great time (I highly recommend Blizzard Beach over Typhoon Lagoon, by the way), the shady spot we chose to leave our towels and cooler seemed to be attractive for a few horse flies as well. I really wished I’d brought along a small spray bottle of yarrow as my Plan B.

The annoying appearance of these horse flies was surprising to me as Disney World is nothing short of incredible at keeping insects of all kinds away from areas where guests congregate. We’ve never had to use any sort of insect repellent anywhere on the enormous Disney World property in all the years we’ve visited, even for nighttime activities at the woodsy campground.

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Are AMR Devices Any Safer Than Smart Meters?

by Sarah TheHealthyHomeEconomist

residential AMR meter

The adoption of digital technology by power companies over the past ten years has occurred with lightning speed. It has happened so fast, in fact, that it has proven difficult for consumers and businesses to keep pace with the trend in order to secure their right to retain analog meters at their home or residence if desired.

There are two common types of digital meters: Standard AMR (automated meter reading) and advanced smart meters.

AMR, sometimes referred to as ERT, provides a one-way wireless communication for utility companies, whereas smart meters have a two-way capability via connection to the SmartGrid.

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Jello Pudding: Healthy and Homemade (plus video how-to)

by Sarah TheHealthyHomeEconomist

strawberry kiwi jello pudding

Jello pudding made with unprocessed ingredients is an easy, fast and yummy treat that is the perfect dish to take to cookouts and potlucks. It pleases junk food and healthfood fans alike.

People sometimes get a puzzled look on their faces when I suggest jello as a healthy treat for kids.

This is understandable, because boxed jello pudding from the store, which is almost without exception the type of jello anybody sees anymore, is one of the nastiest, most artificial concoctions on supermarket shelves. I literally cringe anytime I see an adult serving this frankenfood to a child.

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The Place To Be This October

by Sarah TheHealthyHomeEconomist

We’ll enjoy memorable meals together on the beautiful front lawn of the villa.

Have you ever had an opportunity that you knew would be life changing and would probably never come around again? Even if it was a little inconvenient to make it work, did you go for it anyway?

I had an opportunity like that years ago after I finished graduate school. I had a couple months off and a few thousand dollars in the bank before I started my full-time career in IT consulting. An opportunity to go to Japan and China with my college best friend suddenly presented itself, and while it was a little tricky to pull off, I made my plane reservations and went for it. My parents were terrified – there were no cell phones or email then.

Am I ever glad I went on this trip, though, because those weeks traveling around Asia were more than life changing.  The things I experienced and the conversations I had with the many amazing people I met on that trip continue to affect me even today in a very positive way.

Another rare opportunity presented itself recently, and it took only a millisecond for me to decide to go even though the timing wasn’t perfect. The trip is to Tuscany (Lucca), Italy this October on an exclusive getaway which is so one-of-a-kind that I decided to take one of my children with me, whose recent studies in school segue perfectly. My son is most excited about seeing a real raw milk vending machine in action (yes, there’s one right in Lucca!), riding bikes on top of the famed walls of the city, and seeing the architecture and artwork he has studied in school when we visit Florence and probably Rome too. Depending on the weather (which is the best of the year), I want to plan a day trip to the the Cinque Terre as well, voted one of the most beautiful coastal areas in the world by National Geographic magazine.

The best news of all is that you can go too, and I would really love to have you join me!

The trip to Lucca, Italy this October on a Jovial Foods Culinary Getaway is with my friends Jenny of Nourished Kitchen, Kristen of Food Renegade and the twenty or so other people who choose to join us. We’ll spend time learning traditional Italian techniques for making einkorn pasta and breads, taught by Carla, the founder of Jovial Foods. We’ll be staying in a luxurious, 18th century Tuscan villa with large, spacious grounds (including a solar heated swimming pool fed by mountain springs) and visiting spectacular sites like Pisa, Florence and Siena which are just a short distance away.

You really must consider coming along (I’m told there are only 4 rooms left)!  Click here for more information, the planned schedule, and to register for this once in a lifetime culinary getaway in Tuscany.  I am so excited about this!

The picture below is one of the spacious rooms will bring you back in time to the 18th Century when the villa was used as a vacation retreat.

The spacious rooms will bring you back in time to the 18th Century when the villa was used as a vacation retreat.

Below is an email from a Mom of three who just recently decided to come on the getaway. She sent me this message which she gave permission for me to reprint.

Hello Sarah,

I have been a regular reader of your blog for a few years now and you have literally changed my life. Thank you!

When I read about the holiday to Tuscany it sounded amazing but I thought it would never be possible!

However, I have an amazing husband, who decided I should book the week away and leave him in charge of the 3 kids for the week!

So I am really excited that I will be joining you on this holiday to Tuscany in October! I booked a room a few weeks ago and will be coming with another friend!

I am actually British but live in Munich in Southern Germany with my half German husband and 3 kids! So I will be driving together with my friend, down to Tuscany – it takes about 7 hours, and that way I get to stock my car up with all the goodies that are on offer to buy there!

I am so thrilled to get the chance to meet you (and Jenny and Kristen!) in person and thank you for the major changes you have encouraged in mine and my family’s life! I’m also excited to get the chance to chill and relax in the wonderful villa and grounds and I have heard amazing things about the town of Lucca (like cycling the old walls on bikes!)

Keep up the amazing work you do – you are such an inspiration to so many!

See you in October.

With warm regards,

Rachel Heinicke

So, are you in?  Really, really hope to see you there!

Here are some more photos to tantalize you :)  Click here for more photos of the getaway.

Expansive sitting rooms will provide you with the space you need to relax and unwind.

Expansive sitting rooms will provide you with the space you need to relax and unwind.

 

Everyone’s favorite spot! The solar-heated pool is fed by a local spring from the surrounding mountains.

Everyone’s favorite spot! The solar-heated pool is fed by a local spring from the surrounding mountains.

 

Cooking classes are warm and inviting, very hands-on and informative.

Cooking classes are warm and inviting, very hands-on and informative.

 

You will have full access to the kitchen for cooking meals. You’ll love to cook in this amazing space.

You will have full access to the kitchen for cooking meals. You’ll love to cook in this amazing space.

 

Enjoy soul searching walks in the expansive grounds or take a hike through olive groves up to the nearby mountain.

Enjoy soul searching walks in the expansive grounds or take a hike through olive groves up to the nearby mountain.

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