I know we all have things in life that make us giddy, or just fill us with joy. I have many such things in my life. It doesn’t take much to make me squeal with delight, or sigh with satisfaction. Today, I thought I’d share with you just a few of my favorite things, things that currently make me happy. (And no, they aren’t raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens. Just thought I’d mention that in case you, like me, were already singing that song in your head!)
I love salt. I always have. Once I tried to not consume any salt during a crazy flush I was doing. I couldn’t hack it. I lasted 5 days and caved. It was stupid. We actually need to consume salt – read more about it here. Anyway, I love all different kinds of salts, in all different colors and shapes. I really love the fact that we can obtain such a variety of salts today. My kids do too. They think it’s fun to put all the different salts we have on their meals. Currently, we have Himalayan Pink salt, Celtic sea salt, which is a subtle shade of grey, Real Salt full of specks of color namely a bit of red, we also have some Smoked Sea Salt. I buy Redmonds Real Salt in bulk now, since my health coop shut down, to use in all my fermentation. I use a lot, and the bulk price is the best one I have found so far! The smoked sea salt is pretty fun, but beware a little goes a long way. Andrew and I sampled several interesting smoked sea salts at the new Whole Foods near us this past weekend. I couldn’t believe how many varieties there were. They were sold in bulk and you could sample them, it was rather cool. Smoked sea salts will make your food taste grilled, not to mention smell amazing! (I’m thinking smoked sea salts are the new big thing!) I’ve also tried Hawaiian Red Salts and some Black salts in the past. I find it fun to dice things up a bit and have a different unique variety of sea salt on hand to flavor and adorn our food with. My kids get just as giddy about it as I do! I am also coveting one of those cute little bamboo salt bowls with the lid to put on the table, so we can just pinch out our salt at the dinner table!
This should come as no surprise to anyone, cause what gal isn’t in love with chocolate in some form or fashion. My taste for chocolate has changed over the years. I now find I much prefer the darker the better. 73% used to be dark enough for me, now I find it too sweet. It’s gotta be 80% or more for this chick! I also really try to stick to organic fair trade chocolate with no soy. That can be hard to find, but fortunately the darker you go, the more pure the ingredients are. My current favorite kinds are; Vivani Dark Chocolate 85%, Scharffenberger 82% Dark Chocolate, Theo 85% Dark Chocolate Bar. The Scharffenberger bar is not organic and does contain soy lecithin, but it’s non-gmo soy lecithin, which I can live with. I certainly won’t be eating it regularly. It’s got a really nice finish and flavor that I find uniquely worth having every now and again, plus it’s pretty easy to find at more upscale grocery stores. Theo also has a coffee flavored dark chocolate bar that is divine. Though I won’t be diving into that one too much, since the caffeine in it definitely affects me. It’s definitely a once in awhile special treat! I also really enjoy the organic fair trade cocoa powder from Frontier. I have tried about a million (okay, I exaggerate) different cocoa powders and this is the one I like the best so far. It’s my go to cocoa powder and it can be purchased in bulk, thankfully. I also really love raw cacao, though I don’t love the price. Though certainly it’s a worthy once in awhile treat. Chocolate is a splurge in my life, a morale booster and endorphin high waiting to happen – so it’s not an everyday thing. I keep cocoa powder on hand to make things like my butter fudge, Ultimate Dark Chocolate Truffles or coconut flour brownies when chocolate is needed. Yes, I said NEEDED. By the way, have you ever tried my butter fudge?! If not, you simply must! I promise, you will want to kiss me when you taste it!
I bought a new bed last spring (which I am completely in love with), and had to get all new bedding. I had in the past heard of satin pillowcases being good for your hair and skin, so I decided to purchase one. I have become smitten. I feel like a beauty queen every night when I lay my head on that pillow (okay, maybe a little dramatic, but just go with it!) I only needed one, so I decided it was worth the splurge, and I am now very happy I did! Do you have a satin or silk pillowcase? I am now considering the sheets too…..we shall see!
Eating Bone Marrow
As you well know by now, on this site, I am all about eating animal fats, and lots of them. I would have never considered trying bone marrow in the past, but now I love it. Recently, I found myself craving it. I remember one day I stood over the pot of lamb stew and found every marrow bone I could and eagerly sucked the marrow right out. Heaven, pure heaven! If you have not tried eating bone marrow, what are you waiting for?
My Quart Mason Jar with a Handle and a Lid
Years ago, I picked up this cool mason jar with a handle at a Dollar Store. Lately, it has become my go to mug. I can fill it up with a smoothie, plop a lid on it and take it on the go if needed. Unfortunately, I can’t find these jars at the dollar store anymore. The cool thing is, you can get a whole case online. I hope to order more soon, I think they’d also make nice containers for gifts. Needless to say, this mug is very handy and I use it constantly, along with the lid. I love these handy plastic lids – no real food kitchen should be without them! IMO
Natural Calm (for my cycle)
Years ago, I discovered that supplementing with magnesium would be a necessity for me, likely for life. I am sure many of you have had that same discovery. My favorite magnesium supplement is Natural Calm, it actually tastes pretty good. I like to take my daily dose in a small glass of water right before bed. I definitely make sure I take it leading up to menstruation, it has really helped me have much better smoother cycles. Make sure if you are taking magnesium that you are getting enough calcium too. Thankfully, you can get Natural Calm with both calcium and magnesium. I also take a multi-mineral supplement currently with my magnesium. I don’t want to favor any one mineral over another since they are all needed to work together synergystically in the body. I sleep so much better and have better more consistent bowels as well when I take both. I am thankful to know that this aids my body immensely enough to combat issues during my cycle. If I forget to take it, my body revolts.
My wonderful boyfriend bought me a set of kettlebells for my birthday last fall. I absolutely adore them. I have been working with kettlebells for about 2 years now and I likely always will. That is how much I love them. I think I am just about ready to add a 35 lb bell to my collection for when I do swings.
Have you tried kettlebells yet? They are so totally my favorite piece of equipment to work out with!
I nearly went through a whole gallon of beet kvass by myself this past week. I have become co-dependent upon the medicinal brew. It’s my new favorite way to get things, or keep things going, if you know what I mean. I literally CRAVE it! Yeah. When just 6 months ago I really didn’t love it. I think I finally mastered the brewing process and have it tweaked to just how I like it. I highly recommend trying out some beet kvass and maybe you will learn to love it like me. It’s fabulous for the health of your liver and gallbladder. And Lord knows we all could use some help in those two organs! Here is my recipe. I prefer to brew it with the use of some remaining beet kvass and to initially start it with kombucha or water kefir if I don’t have that. I have never liked it with whey, but if that is all you have of course it is okay to use. I love to bottle it in these cool wire top bottles that you can get at either Ikea or a brewing supply company. I think it helps to get the brew nice and effervescent. I got a case at a local brewing supply for around $35. You can get them online at Amazon too – like this one, it’s bigger than the ones I got.
New Booch Flavor
(aka – kombucha) Every kind I drink usually has ginger in it, it’s kind of a given. Plus I like the effervescence it creates. Anyway, I concocted a Blueberry Pineapple Ginger booch that was so far my favorite homemade flavor hands down. I’ve been long brewing my booch to remove the sugars, as you ‘should’ do. So, finding this way to sweeten it back up a bit was a bonus, plus the kiddos were delighted! I also love GT’s Botanical No. 7, with orange, ginger, chamomile and hibiscus. Yum! So, if I ever am out and buy a booch, that’s my new go to flavor. It used to be Ginger Berry, and before that Synergy’s Trilogy. (yeah, they all have ginger in ‘em, go figure!) Speaking of booch, I love reusing old bottles to store my final ferment in. I love these bottles my friend Suzanne gave me. I also love it when I can get a lot of head on top, means it’s gonna be good and fizzy! What about you, do you flavor your booch? Here’s how I do it!
I used to suffer with chronic sinus infections. I would use a homeopathic nasal spray solution that seemed to help. I never could wrap my mind around using a neti pot though. Something about pouring water through my nose freaked me out and reminded me of many times near drowning when I was a kid (okay, I never ‘nearly’ drowned, but had many times I got dunked under or held under or stayed under too long where all the water got up my nose and I can remember coughing and choking for a long time after. It was these kinds of memories that kept me from being willing to try a neti pot). So, I finally got my big girl panties on and decided to be brave and give the neti pot a try. This only occurred just this year for me. DOH! And I have to say, I should have done it long ago. There was no reason to fear it, of course. But every reason to revere it! What a helpful little contraption! I know use it regularly. Now every time I see my cute little pot sitting there, I get delighted! Really I do, because partly it reminds me that I overcame a fear, as silly as it was and it reminds me that I now am more equipped to fight a sinus infection. I just think it’s great, that’s all!
Oil Pulling & Dry Brushing
These two are bringing me joy again and again daily. In February I hosted an oil pulling challenge, which was highly successful and I think people really are loving the benefits. This then led me to want to do another challenge, so this month in March I have been hosting the dry brushing challenge. I absolutely love how both my teeth and skin feel after doing these new forms of hygiene practices in my daily regime. If you are interested in learning more about either, check out this post on oil pulling, and this one on dry brushing. And be sure to read this reader’s testimony and how she took up both practices daily as well, and how much she is loving the benefits.
= the crisp bites that remain after rendering animal fat, such as lard. The first time I ever rendered lard, I did not do so well. It took forever and I never got the cracklings. Well, I could have, but I kind gave up on the remaining lump of fat and pieces, and you guessed actually pitched them in the trash (gasp, I shudder now to even think of such waste). Now I am far more seasoned at this very simple of tasks, and I eagerly await the final rendering to partake in these crispy crunchy treats of delight. Do you get a hankering for salty, crunchy fatty things once in a while? I usually do, very strongly, once a month. Yep, good ole Mother Nature. I used to allow myself to buy a bag of chips once a month, OR if I was behaving myself I’d fry myself up some homemade potato chips or sweet potato chips. Now, I head for the cracklings. They satisfy me so much more deeply. Have you tried cracklin’s yet? If not, what are you waiting for. For a recipe and how to, check out this post!
Okay, so I lied, that’s more than a few…………but who’s counting anyway! I hope you enjoyed my favorite things, and perhaps are inspired to try something new after reading them. I am sure there will be new favorite things that make their way into my life and my heart. It’s quite possible, as I love to keep things interesting and broaden my horizens. Only time will tell.
What about you? What are some of your favorite things that bring a smile to your face, or put a sparkle in your eye?