Me Made May

Its nearly May , which means that I will turn another year wiser and for the first year I’ve signed up to participate in Me Made May challenge created by the wonderful Zoe , head over here to check it out for yourself.

Being friends with Zoe is very inspiring and motivational to wear handmade , as I see the amazing clothes and sense of personal style that brings  with wearing handmade. I am very guilty of reaching for jeans and t-shirt almost everyday and May is where that will stop…. well not altogether but I will wear more of my own clothes.

My pledge is to  finish a project I started almost 3 years ago before I had my second child , alterations are needed as my body shape has most definitely changed.  I also have a few other handmade dresses that I’d like to alter to fit better.  One thing I always said I would do and haven’t is make clothing items for my kids, shamefully the most that ever amounted to was some winter hats. So I plan on making each child at least one item to wear.

I plan on blogging about this and documenting on my Instagram with the #MMMay18.

Watch this space or join me in challenging yourself.

Zx

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Oat Milk

For a while now I wanted to make some milk alternatives so I decided to start with oat milk. Mainly because I had oats in the cupboard. So, for the ingredients you start with

Oats

I just used standard oats from the local supermarket , but I have seen recipes using jumbo and steel cut oats, I’m not really sure if they would produce any different results.

To soak or not to soak

I then soaked my oats for 5 minutes. Some recipes call for a soak overnight and some not at all. I had seen recommendations that unless your using a high speed , powerful blender , they combine better when they have been soaked for a time. As I was using a stick blender and I am impatient I chose to soak for 5 minutes.

Water

This is a matter of personal preference I have seen standard recipes use between 750ml to 950ml. The less water the more creamier it will be. I started off with 750ml and adjusted from there and ended up with roughly 850ml , I was happy with the consistency at 750ml I wanted more in volume so added more water.

Flavouring

You can keep the oat milk as is. I tried this and it’s pleasant enough. I did decide to sweeten with a tablespoon of maple syrup. You can use dates , this is one I wanted to try but realised I didn’t have any dates . I have also seen agave ,cocoa powder or fruit. All sound delicious and can’t wait to try these.

Blend

As mentioned I used a stick blender , but of course you can use any blender you have . I think the more powerful one you have perhaps the smoother you be able to get it ;However, saying that my stick blender did a great job.

Strain

There are so many different ways to get a great strain . Muslin, nut milk bag, strainer or as I used my French press . I honestly found this to be great because I blended in the French press and then plunged, it gave a great result . I may however try Muslin / cheesecloth next time to see the difference in results.

After straining I popped in a cleaned out pasata bottle and this will keep in the fridge for then next 5 days.

I made myself a lovely coffee with the milk and it tasted great , this will become a regular part of my routine I’m sure.

I am hoping to make this a regular feature on the blog called ‘Monday Makes’ . Let me know if you have any recommendations be it food, drink or anything that helps me be less plastic.

Thanks for reading

Zx

I adapted from this recipe on The Minimalist Baker.

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Brighton Funday

I recently, after a while went to Brighton for a day trip, we used to live there but moved across the coast to Eastbourne a couple of years ago. It’s such a short train ride and my big bro lives there , and they have zero waste options !! . Yassss girl.

HISBE

So top of my list after hanging with my bro was checking out HISBE

( How it should be).  It’s an independent store that offer so many zero waste , no packaging options .  The fresh produce and bread were amazeballs.

Refill Bar

They also had an awesome refill bar. Now reading other people blogs , seeing Instagram feeds I was having some serious refill envy , the cost saving , the reducing of plastic packaging. I had looked in to alternatives like bulk buying online , which is still a really good option and have recently found that Ocado sell big Ecover refills and Method also. But I felt like kid in a sweet shop . There was laundry detergent, cleaning fluid , hair care . They also sell refillable containers. I forgot to take a picture but I got some washing up liquid and shampoo.

The other part of there refill section was the dry products. From pasta to porridge and even chocolate discs. It was great use can use your own container or they had paper bags there, which was good because I had come out with nothing so appreciated the options there. I definitely plan on going back soon with produce bags and reusable bottles in tow and have a bigger shop.

Glazed

After a satisfying shop around HISBE and a bumble about The Laines we headed to Glazed . Now I spotted this place on Instagram and they say they are next level doughnuts and they are also vegan. The place when you walk in just had a great laid back skater vibe , there is local art on the walls and doesn’t seem like it’s trying to be cool, it just is . We got some doughnuts and the guy threw in a free one , we had two raspberry , a Oreo chocolate and a cinnamon sugar one . They were next level, we also had a couple of coffees with oat milk , it may have been one of the best coffees I’ve had in a while , it was a flat white and mighty strong just the way I like it . I am now also a convert to oat milk and may try to make my own. This will be visiting again I’m sure , if I lived in Brighton this would be a regular hangout.

It was so nice to be back in Brighton , it felt like home . Next on my list for the next adventures of Zoe and Sean (my bro) Silo and some other refill places in Hove. Gosh don’t I know how to live it up. Until next time.

Z x

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Our journey

When speaking with family and friends I often get asked ‘what does Zero waste mean?’. To be honest this will vary widely between zero waste enthusiasts.  Our family is relatively new on our  journey in to this new life change.   As I’ve mentioned before we all use the term zero waste , but at the moment I am far from living a truly zero waste life. I do see the years worth of trash in a jar and think oh gosh I need to do more ; however we are reducing our waste significantly and getting better every week .  Just this past week our refuse collection was halved.  We went from having an overflowing bin to a half full one.  That’s a win for me.  Here are some of the changes we’ve made so far and some we plan to make in the near future.

Food

When I’m doing the grocery shopping I try to buy package free . With fruits and vegetables you can normally get what you need or want quite easily in the supermarkets , and there is a weekly local market that we can go to.  The nearest bulk store we have is in Brighton so I do plan on going there once or twice a month to stock up.  I’ve made some produce bags but to be honest I forget them most of the time and just have some trusty totes in my backpack . I don’t really care about veg being loose in my bag.  Also myself and a friend Zoe , check out her great sewing blog here , are planning on getting an allotment and grow our own food. More to come on that soon.

Laundry and cleaning

I have switched over to ecover for our laundry detergent , washing up liquid and toilet cleaner and soon cleaning spray .  The reason I chose these as they are made in a more environmentally friendly way and on my trips to the bulk store I should be able to refill which is great and I’ll hopefuly save some money by refilling .  My plan is to also try some of the many homemade versions that are online to see if that would work for us.

Clothes 

With clothes I’ve been picking up things I need from charity shops. I have also busted out the sewing machine to finish some clothes projects I started a while ago.  With the kids . I have two boys and a girl , I do hand them down to all three , and I have had some amazing hand me downs from friends and family. They do get brought clothes from the grandparents but I don’t restrict that because once we have finished with them I will hand them to someone else or to a charity shop .

Toys 

With three kids yes we have lots of plastic toys , again once my lot are finished with them I will donate them. We are being  more thoughtful now and buying wooden toys , the bonus of that is they are lasting much longer.

Celebration / gifting

Of course celebrations call for decorations , gifts and food.  It’s my daughters birthday coming up soon , so I am in the process of making some unisex birthday bunting that can be used year after year , for adult or child. We have Christmas bunting we get out each year which had become a tradition which feels lovely. So whoohoo for bunting .  With gifts for the kids they have lots of things.  I found this lovely site here which explained their minimalist lifestyle and their gifting ‘rules’.  Something they want, something they need, something wear and something they read .  I don’t feel the kids are missing out , only getting them 4 gifts, this year my daughter will get a wooden doll house ‘want’, a backpack for when she starts nursery ‘wear’ , a book from little people big dreams ‘read’ its the story of Frida Kahlo told I’m child friendly way . And for the ‘need’ I will possibly get a new water bottle or lunch bag im not sure on that one.   As for adults for the past few years they have been used to getting made presents from me or gift experiences to name a few .

So as you can see from this. I’m not perfect by any means but we are doing our best to reduce our waste . Buy less plastic and make more environmentally friendly choices. I am doing this so my kids might see that the little things you do really can make a difference.

 

Zx

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