The Rising Spoon

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Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Creamy Lemon Pasta with Heirloom Cherry Tomatoes

Creamy Lemon Pasta with Heirloom Cherry Tomatoes |

This is a heavily modified version of my signature pasta recipe. I've never managed to write down the ingredient measurements for the original dish--mostly because I always add them by hand and adjust by taste. 

Even now in this adapted version, I won't provide strict guidelines for using the dried herbs. I urge you to sprinkle, taste, and adjust to your liking. Or, make substitutions based on what's in your pantry and fridge. 

Although, I must point out that the lemon juice and dried oregano are key flavors.

Friday, July 25, 2014

How to Make Lip Balm with Olive Oil

How to Make Lip Balm with Olive Oil

After my first adventure making homemade lip balm with coconut oil, I decided to experiment until I achieved a medium-firm lip balm. Something that still felt smooth going on, but was firm enough that I didn't have to apply it as often. 

My initial thought was to simply increase the beeswax in the recipe, but I decided to try a different oil this time around, so I could see how it affected the overall smell. 

In my first recipe, the primary ingredient was coconut oil, which made it super glossy, but also smell like coconuts. I don't have a problem with this (and think it pairs nicely with peppermint essential oil), but I know some folks dislike coconut products or are allergic to them. 

So, I decided to give extra virgin olive oil a go. It was sitting on the kitchen counter at the time, so why not?

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Photo Essay: My Recent Travels in Northern Europe (Part One)

Photo Essay: My Recent Travels in Northern Europe (Part One)

A few days ago I returned from my first trip abroad. To say that I was ecstatic for a chance to travel anywhere overseas is an understatement.

Thanks to the generosity of my boyfriend's parents, both of us were able to tag along with them to London, England where we stayed for a few days near Hyde Park before hopping on a cruise in Dover, England to western Norway. The seven day cruise stopped at four ports (Bergen, Geiranger, Ă…lesund, and Eidfjord) along the fjords.

Before leaving, I made sure to pack sturdy walking shoes, my essential oils, versatile clothes for cool and warm weather, and a thick book for the 8+ hour flight.

Most importantly, I brought a positive attitude, open mind, and a hearty appetite. 

Friday, July 4, 2014

Monthly Link Love: June 2014 Edition

Monthly Link Love: June 2014 Edition

For my American readers, I hope you're enjoying the holiday! 

If you find some quiet time in between barbecues, watermelon slices, cold beverages, bottle rockets, and sparklers, check out the links below for a hodgepodge of mouthwatering recipes and interesting articles + a recap of what you might have missed here on The Rising Spoon.

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

How to Make a Homemade Salve for Bug Bite Relief (That Really Works!)

How to Make a Homemade Salve for Bug Bite Relief |

Having grown up in Kansas, I'm no stranger to bug bites. I grew up in the countryside and played outdoors frequently, so was constantly plagued by chiggers, mosquitoes and ticks. My family used to joke that I attracted bugs (and bites), because I tasted so sweet to them. 

Sometimes I would spray myself from head to toe with commercial buy spray, but it only helped a little. 

Most of the time I'd just suffer the bites, or in the case of chiggers, try to stifle the itch by covering the bite with clear nail polish. This actually worked, but was probably not great for my body!

Saturday, June 28, 2014

Summer Round-Up: 20+ Simple Recipes Using Fresh Heirloom Tomatoes

Summer Round-Up: 20+ Simple Recipes Using Fresh Heirloom Tomatoes

If there's one summer vegetable I think you should be gorging on right this second, it's heirloom tomatoes. And if possible, hoarding them like crazy. 

You see, heirloom tomatoes are one of those rare veggies (I know, I know, they're actually fruits--whatever) that are NOT available year-round everywhere. In today's 24/7 world of international shipping, that's uncommon.

And they're nothing like the blemish-free, standard red tomatoes you see in the supermarket all year. Those tomatoes are lackluster and flavorless. They're hybridized to look perfect and ship well across long distances.

Sunday, June 15, 2014

What You Should Ask Before Using Essential Oils & Why I Now Use Young Living Oils Instead of Buying Retail

What You Should Ask Before Using Essential Oils |

When I first started using essential oils for my DIY projects it was primarily for scent purposes and I figured all essential oils were pretty much the same. 

I'd grab a bottle from my local health food store for $5-8 and didn't give it a second thought. I mean, it said "100% pure essential oil" on the front label so it had to be legit, right? 

Nope. Turns out that what's required on the label all comes down to regulation and like the popular phrase "all natural" in the food industry, "pure" doesn't mean much. 

The label can say "100% pure essential oil" and still be diluted with synthetic ingredients. You know, things that aren't good for your skin, but help keep costs down for companies.

Friday, June 13, 2014

How to Make Lip Balm

How to Make Lip Balm |

I made homemade lip balm for the first time last week. 

I'm kind of a big deal

Seriously, though...I felt a bursting sense of accomplishment after filling my last lip balm tube. To hold something as simple as lip balm, a thing I'd had on my person nearly every day for the last 20 years, and know that I had crafted it myself...well, that felt amazing. (All you seasoned DIY-ers can go ahead an laugh at me!)

The ability to make your own beauty essentials, even if you're reliant on sourcing the ingredients, is a powerful form of self sufficiency. And the best part is you control exactly what goes into your products, and thus your body. 

If you're the type of person who is working toward consuming more unprocessed foods and natural products, making homemade beauty products is a no-brainer. And it's nowhere as intimidating as it seems.