toddy iced coffee

1. soaking coffee grounds

2. finished product

i’ve seen this recipe for “perfect iced coffee” floating around for a year or so, and i finally tried it. robert informed me it is called “toddy” because he is a coffee man. the first time i used the recipe was pretty frustrating, but after some tweaking i am now finishing up my second pitcher and boy is it good! i quit caffeine when i was pregnant, so i’m using a very small amount of regular coffee combined with decaf bustelo brand in a can. it’s really cheap, but for this purpose it doesn’t matter.

these half gallon mason jars and cheesecloth i bought have been amazing for so many purposes (gotta love amazon prime). this is no exception. i look forward to trying variations of toddy brew like this one. and maybe making some coffee ice cubes to mix with bailey’s.

here’s my recipe for iced coffee.

you need:

coffee grounds of choice
half gallon container
mesh strainer

– measure out 8 oz coffee grounds (1 cup) and pour into a half gallon container.

– fill container with water and cover. let soak at room temp overnight.

– double up on cheesecloth in bottom of mesh strainer. put strainer on  pitcher. pour some of the coffee mixture through strainer. when the bottom of strainer is filled with grounds, squeeze out the remaining liquid. discard grounds in trash. repeat this process until no more liquid remains.

notes: depending on how strong you like coffee, this can be diluted with water. i swish the remaining grounds with fresh water and strain until my pitcher is full. i reuse the cheesecloth, just rinse it out and let it dry.


around the house

Well, it looks like we will have an April baby! Easter is coming up, but I hope we don’t have to wait that long to meet our baby! My birthday is on the 19th, so no matter what we will have a lot to celebrate in April.

Since starting maternity leave, I’ve actually been using this Pinterest thing for productivity. I have polished our wood with DIY beeswax polish, sewn a lot of wedding gifts, hemmed some pants for Robert, made another batch of laundry detergent, organized, cleaned, created a farm share spreadsheet, finished laundry, made natural deodorant, baked 2 loaves of butternut squash bread, started 2 colors of sauerkraut, made fermented dill pickles, read Hunger Games, and sometimes I get out of the house. The weather hasn’t been very nice lately–cold and gray. I’m sad for all the flowers that were tricked into bloom and now hang their heads in the freezing temps.

Today I am working on a new blog design since I have some extra time on my hands. I’m also experimenting with new photo editing ideas since Picnik is closing on my birthday. I really like their rounded corners and collage features. So the photos of cabbage above are a little sample of what you can do on FotoFlexer. It’s similar to PhotoShop. That’s the best I could find so far. Any other suggestions?

Well, I’m going to go wash my shower curtain liner. And bake some whole wheat zucchini bread. Maybe clean some jewelry. I’ll also probably make some dish soap.

Come on baby!


A couple weeks ago I went back to homemade bath/body care. Robert and I were almost out of shampoo and soap/body wash so it is the perfect time to return to our ideals. A year ago I went totally shampoo free and made my own natural soap. I also adopted a natural facial cleansing habit but have not implemented that again this year. One thing at a time!

Showering is definitely not high on my list of priorities. I don’t like showers. I kinda like baths, but not for the purpose of getting clean. Therefore, I tend to only shower two or three times a week. Please don’t be grossed out. I don’t get sweaty or stinky between showers. Robert always showers at least once daily because that is his thing. He can’t survive without his morning shower. Am I getting too personal? Anyway… This natural approach definitely compliments my distaste because I don’t have to shower as often. Why?

Store bought products have detergents in them which strip our bodies of natural oils. This creates different reactions in everyone, but it usually means our bodies produce excess to keep up with our sudsy habits. We don’t need suds to make us clean. It’s all in our heads thanks to advertising and marketing schemes. The natural method is also MUCH cheaper–a little goes a long way!

Just as we want to be aware of what we put inside our bodies for nourishment, I think we should be informed about what we use to cleanse them.

Okay, I’m off my soapbox (ba da ching)! Here is what I made and a short explanation of the ingredients and usage.

Left to right: Conditioner, Shampoo, Body Wash.

These are the essences I chose. They were on sale at the co-op. Plus clove and orange remind me of autumn and Christmas! I added cinnamon and a tiny bit of vanilla to mellow out the flavor a little. Probably could have gotten some better vanilla, but I went with it.



Conditioner: 3 parts water, 1 part apple cider vinegar. Essential oils. Spritz a small amount onto the ends of my hair to detangle and seal the cuticles. Apple cider vinegar is made of miracles, I think.




Shampoo: 3 parts water, 1 part baking soda. Essential oils. I just pump the mixture on my scalp and massage in. It takes me about ten pumps. No need to put it all over my hair–that would take forever! I just want to nix the dirt, skin cells, oils etc that collect on my crown and be done with it.


Body Wash: 2 cups grated natural soap, 4-5 cups water, 1/8cup oats for our sensitive skin and eczema, a couple squirts of body oil to seal in moisture. Cinnamon stick. Essential oils. Boil the water and added the rest of the ingredients. Stir it up real good. Strain out oatmeal and cinnamon. Let it cool off. Funnel into containers. This makes about 2 full mason jars and a full soap pump bottle.



Do you have any immediate reactions to this offbeat idea? Has anyone else abandoned store-bought body detergents? What have your experiences been? I’d love to hear both successes and failures, likes and dislikes!

Categories DIY