We aren’t sure what kind of person you are…glass half full, glass half empty…well, you get the picture. Last week marked the exact MIDDLE of the winter season. Typically, the beginning of winter brings the desire to get cozy, to hunker down, to eat hefty and filling foods, and to really just enjoy the excuse to stay home in a warm blanket and bathrobe. By the middle of winter, many people are starting to get antsy. The warm and fuzzy feelings about the cooler weather is no longer warm and fuzzy. Maybe gray and bleak is a better description of the feelings which often mirrors the look of the day outside.
On the bright side, the middle of winter is the perfect time to combat those gray and bleak feelings with a few sure-fire ways to put them at bay.
Get. Outside. As much as the look of the day might keep you away, a massage is the best way to beat the winter drearies. Fresh air, blood pumping, and any sunshine you can muster gives all of that gray a sudden silver lining.
Become a Glow-Getter. Seek out a massage or our DIY Mask (recipe is below). Your skin often takes the brunt of the winter activities (harsh dry air inside and chapping cold days outside). A good scrub often helps to regain that glow that you may be longing for.
Love your Guts. Gut health has been taking the main stage lately and for good reason. A gentle reminder to take extra gut health precautions in the middle of winter is always diligent. Try making some homemade Kombucha (recipe is below) that is great to experiment with to find your perfect blend. Fermented foods help to regulate your gut bacteria. Good gut health helps your immune system, your emotional state and even your healthy glow.
Batch size: roughly 1 gallon Time to prepare: 30 minutes Time to ferment: 7-14 days
At least 1-gallon sauce pot
Fine mesh strainer if using loose tea
1-gallon mason jar
Container for storing brew like swing top bottles
Coffee filter or cheese cloth as well as a rubber band
8-10 green or black tea bags or loose tea equivalent
2 cups Sweetener like sucanat or plain sugar
Kombucha Mother or SCOBY
Method of Preparation
Add water, tea, and sweetener to pot and bring to a boil. Once boiling remove from heat and allow to cool slightly.
Once warm to the touch add sweetened tea to 1-gallon mason jar
Add SCOBY to jar
Cover with cheese cloth or coffee filter and secure with rubber band
Sit out at room temperature out of direct sunlight for up to 14 days
After day 7, periodically check the brew to see if new mother forms. Also, taste the brew. If you still taste sweetness, then there is still fermentation that needs to happen.
Once the taste of the sweetener has been replaced by a vinegary flavor, it’s time to bottle in swing top bottles.
Add flavorings of your choice to swing top bottles (ie. Ginger, frozen berries, aromatic herbs, etc.) and top with kombucha brew.
Allow to sit at room temp at least another 12 hours (up to 3 days) before placing in the fridge to stop fermentation. This Secondary fermentation gives your brew a bubbly mouth feel
Repeat the process for an infinite supply of kombucha!
If you don’t have a kombucha mother, you can simply create one by feeding the culture from a store bought brand. Replace step 3 by adding the store bought bottle to the sweetened brew. This technique may add an additional week to the process, but when finished you will have your very own SCOBY.
DIY Coffee Mask
This face mask is made with the most delicious ingredients and is perfect for rejuvenating tired skin. Besides treating dryness, this face mask brightens complexion and decreases puffiness.
Ingredients 1 Tbsp. Coffee Grounds 1 Tbsp. Cocoa Powder 1 Tbsp. Honey Milk
Mix the coffee grounds and cocoa powder. Add honey and milk to form a paste. Apply this delicious mask on your face for 20 minutes and wash off.