Monday, 18 November 2013

Monday Musings: Some DIY Finds

Check out my musings for the week, which all seem to be DIY-inspired.  Hope you enjoy!

Simplified Bee - Organizing With Labels
I loved looking at the organizational eye-candy in this post.  I also promptly printed off the Staples coupon and made my way to label heaven.  I picked up a few labels for Christmas basket items and the hair ties (just ordered some new colours! let me know if you want to order some).

Brit + Co - 17 Ways to Bring Your Instagrams to Life
Like many of you, I also heart Instagram.  In fact, you can normally find me showcasing my beautiful beast Hugo as he provides me with daily entertainment. In terms of this list, I can personally vouch for Casetagram, I used this for a puppy-related anniversary gift for my husband.   We were both thrilled with the result.  The service was quick and the product was beautiful!  I really want to try BumbleJaxCanvasPop and Coastermatic.

Clean My Space - DIY Natural Home Deodorizers and Air Fresheners
As a result of a puppy-related incident this past weekend, I had an urgent need to find a natural deodorizer. This post came to my rescue!  We tried out the gingerbread concoction and it was a raging success!

Wednesday, 13 November 2013

Tea Time

IBS and tea is a topic I have yet to cover on this blog.  It isn't a treatment many doctors will discuss with you, so I happened upon tea quite by accident.  To read more you may want to check out some other bloggers, most notably Dr. Barbara Bolen of

Let me start off by saying that I'm not a tea or coffee drinker in any normal sense of the word. Most gastroenterologists advise against caffeine and I stick to this by sheer accident because I hate the taste and it gets me so revved up I can't function.  I'm a water girl 99.99 % of the time.  In recent years I have taken to experimenting with herbal teas as a digestive aid and have had mild success.

What do I use herbal teas for?  If I feel bloated, gassy or like I need to use the washroom I may look to drink a tea. Sometimes a glass of hot water will help, but I tend to have more success with tea.  My faves are as follows:

1. Mint:  This can be a little controversial, especially for those of you who have GERD (I do!).  If you have GERD then it can exacerbate your symptoms, but I have learned how much I can handle without causing problems.  I tend to buy organic mint or spearmint tea - it has no added caffeine or green tea.  My preference is David's Tea, but I also like the Refresh Tea at Starbucks - but not at home as it is far too expensive!  I tend to buy 100g from David's Tea and it will last me several months.

2.  Detox tea: I have only just begun to explore this tea, also from David's, so am still getting used to it.  The flavour is a little overwhelming, but it does appear to help with digestion.

3.  Pu'erh tea: These teas have a long history in China of helping with weight and digestion.  I'm still acquiring a taste for this; I'm having trouble getting on-board with the flavour; however, know that it works really well.  My favourite way to drink it is with some mint tea thrown in their to mask the flavour.

You can also make your own tea using freshly grated ginger, to find out more take a look at this article on IBS from Best Health.  For other home remedies that may help your IBS, take a look at this article on Discovery.

Do you use any herbal remedies to help manage your IBS or to aid in digestion?

Monday, 11 November 2013

Monday Musings: From Eminem to Coady

Well hello November!  Are we really in November?  It would appear that it is essentially Christmas as it dawned on me while in Michael's that Christmas carols were being played over the stereo system.  Sigh. Which leads me into my links, only one of which has a Christmas reference - I promise!

It's Overflowing - Home Organization Ideas - November

With Christmas around the corner and our holiday party to plan for, it is very clear that we need to get our butts moving and get organizing.  I love how she organized her kitchen and know that I need to spend time reading about how to de-clutter.

From Fries to Fit - Homemade Protein Bars

Given my lack of carnivorous desire, I am constantly looking for ways to increase the amount of protein in my diet.  I can't say I'm a fan of store-bought protein bars except the Honey Stinger Protein Bars, which aren't too bad, but I always try to find ways to make things at home.  With that, my brother, and fellow blogger over at the Daly Dose On Sports came over to test out this protein bar recipe.  We also tried these from Oh She Glows - I have yet to find a dud recipe on her blog!  Both recipes were good; however, I found the pumpkin bars a little bland - but I think they could be jazzed up by adding raisins or some nuts.  As for the Oh She Glows squares?  They are a-maz-ing!  This is a must try recipe!

I wanted to give a shout out to the new Eminem album out this week; I have been listening and loving it. (Never had any doubt that I would adore it!).  Rolling Stone pens an article about the success of the album thus far.

Another shout out goes to Lynn Coady who won the Giller Prize for her collection of short stories Hellgoing. I have yet to read the collection but will definitely pick it up to see for the words that won it for my fellow Nova Scotian.  Maclean's points out the timing of the win, one month after Alice Munro won the Nobel Prize - where fiction is traditionally dominated by the novel. The Toronto Star also examines this feat and wonders about an increase in popularity for the short story.