<![CDATA[HomeEc@Home - The Home Economist]]>Tue, 24 Nov 2015 15:22:17 -0800Weebly<![CDATA[How to Make a Thanksgiving Hand and Footprint Turkey]]>Tue, 24 Nov 2015 16:30:18 GMThttp://www.homeecathome.com/the-home-economist/how-to-make-a-thanksgiving-hand-and-footprint-turkeyI love handprint crafts for kids because they are fun to make (kids love putting their hands in paint) and they become keepsakes that I will cherish reminding me how little my children once were.  I still have a Christmas handprint craft my son made with his babysitter (I was teaching full time then) when he was 6 months old and I treasure it.  It reminds me of how tiny and precious he was. He is still precious, but at 8 years old he is keenly aware that Mommy is embarrassing and won't let me hug and kiss him in public anymore.  Well most of the time, I did get an arm around him in church on Sunday.  
Since my four year old and the little boy that I watch part time love to craft, I got out the paints and some poster board and helped them make handprint and footprint turkeys the other day.  They had a blast and painted for at least an hour while we let the handprints dry.  
I mixed some yellow and red tempura paint to make orange, then swirled some more yellow in to give their handprints a mottled mixed color effect.  
I then helped them position their handprints on the poster board.  We let these dry for about an hour, then made footprints.  
I very carefully dipped their little feet in paint then positioned them on the turkey to make the turkey body.  I had baby wipes near by and quickly wiped the boys' feet off before they could run around with a painted foot.  We let the paint dry during nap time so that it would be completely dry before moving on.  
Then I cut waddles out of red construction paper and beaks out of orange craft foam and the boys helped me glue them on.  For fun we added wiggly eyes.  I think they turned out really cute and the boys had such fun making them.  
Gymboree Sale On Now!
<![CDATA[Natural Chemical Free WaterWipes Baby Wipes Review]]>Mon, 23 Nov 2015 08:44:09 GMThttp://www.homeecathome.com/the-home-economist/natural-chemical-free-waterwipes-baby-wipes-reviewThis post was sponsored by WaterWipes as part of an Influencer Activation for Influence Central. I received complimentary products to facilitate my review.
When welcoming a little one into your family, you want everything with which he comes in contact to be safe and gentle, even down to the baby wipes you use on his delicate perfect skin.  We don't have a new baby at the moment, but we are still in the potty training stage and we use baby wipes everyday.  WaterWipes are chemical free because they contain only two ingredients, 99.9% purified water and 0.1% grapefruit seed extract.  No chemicals will touch your baby's delicate skin when using WaterWipes.

WaterWipes do not contain preservatives, thus making them chemical free.  The WaterWipes package will keep for up to 15 months before it is opened.  After opening, you should use within a month.  

WaterWipes are not interfolded allowing for the sterile environment within the package to be maintained.  For this reason, it is recommended that you do not move the wipes to another container.  The WaterWipes package is easy to open with a resealable opening in the center and will fit easily into a purse or diaper bag.  
WaterWipes are not only a safer, natural option for your little one, they are strong and durable too.  They are thick and feel almost cloth-like while maintaining a comforting softness.  Have trouble with diaper rashes?  Try switching to soft chemical free WaterWipes.  

I found WaterWipes easy to use because they are strong and clean well.  Since they are so thick, you don't have to use many for a messy diaper or training pants cleanup.  Before using WaterWipes, I wondered if they would actually do a good job of cleaning up messy bottoms without any soap in them.  After using them, I have to say they do.  They don't leave a strong scent like some baby wipes do, they are just fresh and clean.
Keep WaterWipes handy when crafting with the kids.  They can safely and easily clean their hands and faces without putting any chemicals on their skin. 
​Water Wipes is a premium European brand that is now available in the United States at Meijer stores.  Meijer is one of my favorite places to shop because I can find everything I need in one place.  Next time you head to the store for groceries, Christmas presents, or even new shoes head to Meijer because they really do have everything.  And while you are there you can stock up on WaterWipes!
Use the WaterWipes Store Locater to find a store near you.

<![CDATA[My Experience with Frosch Cleaning Products (Review) #MomsMeet]]>Fri, 20 Nov 2015 07:18:39 GMThttp://www.homeecathome.com/the-home-economist/my-experience-with-frosch-cleaning-products-review-momsmeetDisclosure:  I received this product for free from the sponsor of the Moms Meet program, May Media Group LLC, who received it directly from the manufacturer. As a Moms Meet blogger, I agree to use this product and post my opinion on my blog. My opinions do not necessarily reflect the opinions of May Media Group LLC or the manufacturer of this product.
Have you heard of Frosch cleaning products?  I had not until recently when I received the opportunity to try them for review.  I like using more and more natural products in my home so I was eager to try Frosch cleaning products.  
The Frosch brand was launched in 1986 by Werner & Mertz, with the intention of offering environmentally friendly cleaning products that were able to compete with traditional cleaning brands without compromise. Environmental considerations permeate every aspect of Frosch, from ingredients to packaging. Frosch’s state-of- the-art research facility is constantly working to improve upon its formulations, and production takes place under the strict EMAS scheme of the European Union. Voted Germany’s Most Trusted Brand by Reader’s Digest for 15 years running, Frosch
has a loyal following in many export countries around the world, but has not been available in the U.S.A. until now.
After trying the cleaning products pictured, my verdict is that they all work well and smell pleasant.  I hate using cleaning products that smell like I should be wearing a gas mask when using them because of the harmful chemical fumes. You can feel safe using Frosch products around your family (no harmful fumes). In fact your kids can even help clean with these products.  
Frosch Pomegranate Dishwashing Liquid contains pomegranate extracts that soothe and moisturize skin and provide an effective clean with its optimal grease and dirt dissolving power.

Frosch Aloe Vera Dishwashing Liquid is ideal for people with sensitive skin due to the calming effects of the Aloe Vera extracts, which help to maintain the moisture balance of the skin while cleaning your dishes and leaving a mild and fresh scent.

Frosch Bio Spirit Glass Cleaner features powerful, active grease-dissolving alcohol that provides streak-free, sparkling cleanliness in a natural way.

Frosch Lemon Toilet Bowl Cleaner has natural lemon extracts and optimally removes stubborn lime deposits, leading to an intense clean.

Frosch Lavender Universal Cleaner cleans and sanitizes floors and most washable surfaces in the household. This Powerful formula with lavender removes grease and dirt and offers reliable and residue-free cleaning.

Frosch Baking Soda All-Purpose Cleaner provides powerful cleaning of most washable household surfaces with a pleasant, fresh scent. The natural active ingredient makes this product ideal and safe for kitchen use.

The retail price for Frosch Dishwashing Liquid is $3.99 for a 500mL bottle. Frosch Lavender Universal Cleaner retails for $5.99. Frosch Baking Soda All-Purpose Cleaner and Bio Spirit Glass Cleaner retail for $4.50. The Lemon Toilet Bowl Cleaner retails for $4.99.

After trying these products, I have to share my favorites.  I love the baking soda all purpose cleaner because it smells so clean.  Confession, I love baking soda products pretty much always because I love the clean smell and feeling they leave behind.  So if you want a really fresh and clean smelling house use the baking soda all purpose cleaner.  

My other favorite new Frosch product is the dishwashing liquid.  I tried both the pomegranate and aloe vera dishwashing liquids and liked them both, but love the aloe vera scent.  My skin is very sensitive to soaps and frequent washing can lead to dry cracked skin, especially in the winter.  When I taught Family and Consumer Science and was in the food lab all day, my hands looked terrible from frequent washing.  I wish I would have had this dish soap then, I would have used it for hand washing soap.  The aloe vera dishwashing liquid is so gentle on my hands.  

I always use natural dishwashing soap because I figure since we are eating off of the dishes, I want the soap used to be as natural and free of unnecessary chemicals as possible.  One thing I have noticed about natural dishwashing liquids though is that they usually don't form as many suds as conventional soaps.  Frosch dishwashing liquid is no exception, you won't see as many suds as with conventional dish soaps, but your dishes will be clean and you can feel good knowing that you are not introducing unnecessary chemicals into your home. 
Frosch Diswashing Liquid is a vegan moisturizing hand dishwashing liquid that works efficiently and is gentle on your skin.

Dermatologically tested to maintain the moisture balance of the skin, Frosch Diswashing Liquid is pH-skin neutral.
For more information, visit froschusa.com.  You can also visit Frosch on facebook and instagram.  

Interested in trying healthy eco friendly products?  Visit Moms Meet for more info.
<![CDATA[Zucchini Chip Cupcakes]]>Tue, 17 Nov 2015 20:26:23 GMThttp://www.homeecathome.com/the-home-economist/zucchini-chip-cupcakes​Back when I taught Family and Consumer Science, I used to have my students make this recipe to expose them to zucchini and show them that it was actually delicious.  I know it's not the same as eating zucchini as a vegetable, but it was a start.  Many of them had never eaten zucchini and thought it was really strange, but when they tried the finished product they always liked it.  
Now my boys enjoy these for a healthy snack.  Well, healthy except that they do have a lot of sugar.  I have been experimenting with alternative sugars and made this batch with sucanat instead of using granulated white sugar.  Honestly, I think they taste just as good with sucanat as they do with granulated sugar.  I also threw in a little ground flax for added nutrition.  

These really are delicious and stand alone without any added frosting.  They never last long around our house.  
​1/2 cup real butter softened (1 stick)
1/2 cup oil (I use melted coconut oil)
1 3/4 cups sugar or sucanat
2 eggs
1/2 cup milk
1 tsp. vanilla
2 1/2 cups flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1/4 cup baking cocoa
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/4 cup ground flax (optional)
2 cups shredded zucchini 
1/4 cup mini semi-sweet chocolate chips
pecans (optional)

1.  In a mixing bowl cream butter, oil and sugar.
2.  Add eggs, milk and vanilla, mixing well.
3.  Combine flour, ground flax (optional), cocoa, baking soda, salt and cinnamon.  Then add to the creamed mixture.
4.  Fold in zucchini and chocolate chips.
5.  Fill greased or paper lined muffin cups two-thirds full.  Top with pecans if using.  
6.  Bake at 375 degrees F for 20-25 minutes or until top springs back when lightly touched.

Makes about 2 dozen cupcakes.  

Home Economics Classroom Recipe
In a Home Economics classroom with 5 or more kitchens of students making this recipe, I used a 1/2 recipe for each kitchen.  Halving recipes insured that food was never wasted and that our food budget went further.  The kids gained more hands on experience because we could afford to cook more often.  I would not use pecans in this recipe in a classroom due to possible food allergies.  

Here is a half recipe for use in the classroom.  

1/4 cup butter softened (1/2 stick)
1/4 cup oil (I use melted coconut oil)
3/4 cup + 2 Tbsp. sugar
1 egg
1/4 cup milk
1/2 tsp. vanilla
1 1/4 cups flour
1/2 tsp. baking soda
2 Tbsp. baking cocoa
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. ground cinnamon
1 cup shredded zucchini 
2 Tbsp. mini semi-sweet chocolate chips

1.  In a mixing bowl cream butter, oil and sugar.
2.  Add eggs, milk and vanilla, mixing well.
3.  Combine flour, cocoa, baking soda, salt and cinnamon.  Then add to the creamed mixture.
4.  Fold in zucchini and chocolate chips.
5.  Fill greased or paper lined muffin cups two-thirds full.  
6.  Bake at 375 degrees F for 20-25 minutes or until top springs back when lightly touched.

Makes about 1 dozen cupcakes.  

Linking up at Create with Joy, Mom Advice.

<![CDATA[Turkey Noodle Soup (From Leftover Turkey)]]>Wed, 11 Nov 2015 02:42:52 GMThttp://www.homeecathome.com/the-home-economist/turkey-noodle-soup-from-leftover-turkey​Don't throw out the turkey carcass after Thanksgiving dinner is over. Save it to make a delicious, hearty soup. Plus the homemade bone broth will be full of healthy nutrients. I love homemade turkey noodle soup and look forward to it even more than the turkey dinner.
1 onion diced
3 cloves garlic minced
1 stalk celery diced
2 T. butter
14 C. water
6 t. chicken base or bouillon
1 turkey carcass
1/2 t. salt
1 t. Cajun seasoning
1 C. sliced carrots
1 C. frozen peas
12 oz. Amish home-style egg noodles

1.  In a large pot, sauté onion, garlic and celery in butter until tender and slightly caramelized.

2.  Add water, chicken base, turkey carcass (I had to break it into 2 pieces to fit it in the pot), salt and Cajun seasoning.  Cook on low for 1 1/2 hours.  

3.  Remove turkey carcass from the pot and pull meat off the carcass with a knife and a fork.  Cut up the meat and return it to the pot.  Add sliced carrots and peas and bring pot to a boil.  

4.  Add noodles and continue to boil uncovered until noodles are tender.  (Check noodle package for cooking time.)
<![CDATA[Eat Up and Slim Down with the Trim Healthy Mama Plan and Cookbook Giveaway]]>Tue, 10 Nov 2015 21:03:45 GMThttp://www.homeecathome.com/the-home-economist/eat-up-and-slim-down-with-the-trim-healthy-mama-plan-and-cookbook-giveawayDisclosure:  I received this product for free from the sponsor of the Moms Meet program, May Media Group LLC, who received it directly from the manufacturer. As a Moms Meet blogger, I agree to use this product and post my opinion on my blog. My opinions do not necessarily reflect the opinions of May Media Group LLC or the manufacturer of this product.
I received copies of the Trim Healthy Mama Plan and Cookbook for review and in all honesty have not fully explored them yet.  There is so much information that will take some time to fully devour, but what I have read makes sense.  It goes along with much of the basic nutrition information that I already know and mostly follow.  

I have been incorporating healthy fats into my regular cooking for some time, but I didn't really know the science behind eating these healthy fats. The Trim Healthy Mama Plan explains everything you need to know about the foods you should be eating.  

A big part of the Trim Healthy Mama plan is showing you how to eat great tasting food while drastically reducing your sugar intake.  Even though I cook with healthy fats, I use white refined sugar and eat processed foods full of sugar. This is an area I really need to improve since I do want to trim my waistline.  

•    The Trim Healthy Mama Plan is the gentle and fun road to trim and healthy. It gives readers a unique way to lose weight and get healthy by eliminating sugar while still eating hearty, delicious food.
•    The book includes menu plans, a list of super foods, time-saving tips, and pantry stocking and lifestyle advice to help readers reach their goals.
•    The companion cookbook offers over 350 recipes to help readers successfully slim down while eating well.
•    This plan is for anyone, from those who love to cook from scratch with the purest ingredients, to those who can barely boil water. It’s not just for crunchy, health food types, and you don’t have to be an exercise fanatic to make this work.
•    The Trim Healthy Mamas will help you find your way out of the maze of diet foods, food fear, and miserable food bondage.
•    The Trim Healthy Mama Plan retails for $19.99, and the Trim Healthy Mama Cookbook retails for $27.99 available everywhere books are sold.

There are so many delicious recipes in this cookbook.  You will never get bored with the Trim Healthy Mama plan with so many choices.  One of my favorite things about this plan is that they encourage you to make it your own and adapt recipes as needed.  I made a fried fish recipe from their cookbook the other day and didn't have the special flour in the ingredient list.  I made it with a small amount of all purpose flour instead.  And while I wasn't fully following THM, the recipe was still overall healthy.  

Another thing I love about the Trim Healthy Mama cookbook is that the recipes are for the most part simple.  I love to plan and prepare meals, but as a busy mother, I have to be realistic and prepare quick and easy meals.  

Want to win a copy of both the Trim Healthy Mama Plan and the Trim Healthy Mama Cookbook?  Enter below.

Interested in trying healthy eco friendly products?  Visit Moms Meet for more info.  

Visit TrimHealthyMama.com to learn more about the Trim Healthy Mama lifestyle.
Linking up at Friendship Friday
<![CDATA[You and Your Children will Love Rainbow Light Power Sours Multivitamins and Multimineral #momsmeet]]>Sun, 01 Nov 2015 05:38:17 GMThttp://www.homeecathome.com/the-home-economist/you-and-your-children-will-love-rainbow-light-power-sours-multivitamins-and-multimineral-momsmeetI received this product for free from the sponsor of the Moms Meet program, May Media Group LLC, who received it directly from the manufacturer. As a Moms Meet blogger, I agree to use this product and post my opinion on my blog. My opinions do not necessarily reflect the opinions of May Media Group LLC or the manufacturer of this product.
My boys are really good about taking their vitamins, especially when they taste as good as these Rainbow Light Power Sours and Bear Essentials do.  I know they taste good because I have tried them too.  And in addition to tasting so delicious, they are super good for you.  

​Rainbow Light® is the #1 most trusted natural vitamin brand*, delivering research-based formulations that include a blend of superfoods, organic, non-GMO spirulina, plant enzymes, probiotics, and botanicals for enhanced digestion, absorption, and a difference you can feel.
Rainbow Light’s Power Sours® Multivitamin Gummies deliver essential nutrition and provide potent-immune support for children ages 4+.
Specially formulated with clinically research key nutrients, plus an extra boost of vitamin C, Rainbow Light Power Sours support optimal growth & development.
Power Sours Multivitamin Gummies promote healthy bones, brain, and eyes, plus balanced energy.
These naturally fruit-flavored gummies are additive and preservative free and available in four delicious flavors: strawberry, pineapple, raspberry, and lemon.
Rainbow Light’s Power Sours retail for $17.99.
We love Rainbow Light Power Sours Vitamins.  They actually taste sweetly sour. They are so convenient in the individual serving packets.  My boys think they are as much fun as fruit snacks, but they are getting super healthy vitamins instead. 
We also got to try Rainbow Light Bear Essentials which are not only healthy and delicious, but pretty adorable too.  
Visit Rainbow Light for more info and stop by their facebook page too.  

Interested in trying healthy eco friendly products?  Visit Moms Meet for more info.  
<![CDATA[Orange Chicken]]>Tue, 20 Oct 2015 19:08:42 GMThttp://www.homeecathome.com/the-home-economist/orange-chickenThis orange chicken is amazing.  I can't even begin to express how amazing it is. There is a secret, well not exactly a secret, but a special ingredient that takes it from good to WOW.  Want to know what that special ingredient is?  It's coconut oil.  Now you don't have to use coconut oil, you can use whatever oil you like. But take my word for it, if you want the WOW factor use coconut oil.  
Coconut oil gives this stir fry a delicious depth of flavor.  It creates a layer of flavors where the orange sauce and the coconut oil combine to make culinary magic.  
Looking at these pictures, I wish I still had some leftovers, but I enjoyed the last of it for lunch. 
Good thing it is really easy to make because my family loves orange chicken. Whip up a quick sauce, chop some chicken and veggies, then stir fry.  Simple, easy, and delicious.
Orange Chicken
3 T. oil (Coconut oil makes this dish amazingly flavorful)
4 boneless chicken breasts or 5-6 thighs, cut up
1 sweet onion, cut into wedges
1-2 cups baby carrots, sliced lengthwise
1 cup orange juice
1 ½  Tbsp. soy sauce
½ tsp. salt
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 Tbsp. brown sugar
1 Tbsp. cornstarch
8 oz. fresh mushrooms, sliced
fresh ground pepper (optional)
Hot cooked rice or noodles
1.  Combine orange juice, soy sauce, salt, garlic, brown sugar and cornstarch.  Set aside. 
2.  Heat oil in a large skillet or wok.  Then add chicken, onion, and carrots.  Cook for a few minutes, then add the mushrooms.  Continue cooking, stirring frequently until chicken is cooked through.  Add some freshly ground pepper while cooking if you like.   
3.  Add sauce and cook until sauce thickens and begins to bubble.
4.  Serve over hot cooked rice or noodles.

Tasty Food Photography eBook
<![CDATA[Celebrating Halloween with Oriental Trading Company]]>Sat, 17 Oct 2015 04:46:25 GMThttp://www.homeecathome.com/the-home-economist/celebrating-halloween-with-oriental-trading-companyDisclosure:  I received products for review purposes only.  All opinions are honest and are my own.  
When I saw all of the Christian Halloween products available at Oriental Trading Company, I thought it would be a great opportunity to review some things and donate them to my son's Catholic preschool.  My son and his friend who I watch a couple of days a week were so excited to test out some new products. 
Aren't these crowns the cutest and I love the Christian messages.  They are $3.99 per dozen which I think is a bargain considering how much fun the boys had with them.  
They both chose the "Treat Others Sweet Like Jesus Would" crowns and spent the longest time coloring them.  I was amazed at how long they spent on their crowns.  They color all the time, but the crowns were a "big deal" since they were different than the regular coloring books.  
Having fun!
Busy at work.
He will love doing this all over again at preschool.
I also ordered a bag of 500 self adhesive jewels to accessorize the crowns.  
They loved sticking the jewels on their crowns.  
I thought these temporary tattoos were just adorable and had the sweetest Christian Halloween messages so I ordered two packages to share with my son's class for their Halloween party.  There are 72 tattoos in each set.  Aren't these the cutest?  And what a great way to tell others about Jesus.  My boys love the "Batty for Jesus" tattoo.  

Being a lover of all things baking, I was excited to try Brach's mini candy corn.  I have actually never seen mini candy corn in the store and knew this was something I wanted to try for fall baking.  
The result: delicious!  They are wonderful on sugar cookies.  I made these cute Candy Corn Halloween Cookies.  They fit perfectly on the cookies making the cutest little jack-o-lanterns.  
Who doesn't need candy at Halloween and what better way than to have it shipped to your door in huge quantities?  Oriental Trading Company has lots of big grab bags of candy from which to choose.  Save a trip to the store and have it shipped just in time for Halloween.  
As you can see Oriental Trading Company has lots of things to help make your Halloween the best one yet.  Check out their website where you can request a free catalog and sign up to receive exclusive offers, promotions, and coupons.
<![CDATA[Candy Corn Halloween Cookies]]>Thu, 15 Oct 2015 05:38:14 GMThttp://www.homeecathome.com/the-home-economist/candy-corn-halloween-cookiesAnyone else find candy corn irresistible?  I find myself buying it every year and I only want it when the weather turns colder and the leaves start to fall.  There is something so nostalgic and familiar about candy corn.  It's like Easter eggs at Easter.  You just have to have it.

​Since candy corn is one of my favorite traditions, I was excited to find mini candy corn.  
I knew these would be perfect for baking.  
And since I love any excuse to bake cookies, I decided mini candy corn and sugar cookies would pair well together.  
Sugar cookies are fun for kids to make too.  Little ones can help roll out and cut the cookies.  And they really love to decorate.  I let my kids use these mess free icing tubes.  I have a pampered chef set and a set I found at an after Christmas clearance sale.  They are easy for kids to use and icing won't come out of the end like with an icing bag.  You may have to help preschoolers since it does take some pressure to squeeze the icing out.  
Aren't these the cutest?  And they are really yummy too.  Now, if I can just keep my boys from eating all of them in one day.  

Here's the recipe:
Sugar Cookies

½ cup butter (1 stick)                          ¼ tsp. salt
¾ cup sugar                                         2 cups flour
1 Egg, large                                          1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 Tbsp. milk                                          ¼ tsp. nutmeg (optional)

In electric mixer, cream butter and sugar together.  Beat in egg, then milk.  Add vanilla.  Blend salt and nutmeg into flour.  Mix flour into dough.  Knead on pastry cloth then put in Ziploc bag and refrigerate for about an hour or overnight if you want to bake later. 
Roll out dough onto lightly floured surface and press with cookie cutters.  Bake at 350 degrees for 10 to 12 minutes.  Cool on wire rack. 

Butter-cream Frosting:
1/2 cup butter (1 stick real butter not margarine)
1/2 cup shortening
1 tsp. vanilla extract
4 cups sifted powdered sugar
2 Tbsp. milk

In electric mixer, cream butter, shortening and vanilla.  Add sifted powdered sugar and milk. Continue to mix at high speed until icing is blended.  Tint with icing color if desired.