Tag: simple

Pineapple Tea is a Yummy Liver Cleanser

| January 12, 2015 | 0 Comments

liver cleanser pineapple teaHere’s a simple, natural, healthy drink that is a great liver cleanser. This tea is also a warm and nutritious coffee alternative that is caffeine free.

It has a sweet, appealing flavor that is delicious to drink. The bonus is that it’s good for you.

Renae, our host at the Community Hostel in Quito, Ecuador, was making this tea one morning when we woke up. She says it’s a great cure for hangovers.

Make it in a large batch and reheat it for a comforting drink anytime of the day or night.

It’s nice that this drink is so healthy and yummy and that the recipe is so simple to follow.

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Tomato Bocconcini and Basil Salad

| December 15, 2014 | 0 Comments

basil plantTomatoes and basil star in this fabulous salad. It’s delicious, nutritious and easy to make.

The “basil” stars of this video are sweet basil and opal basil.

Richard not only teaches you how to make this recipe, he makes sure you know how to grow basil, he shares some history of this popular herb and demonstrates the best way to preserve it.

This recipe is a classic .

Sustainable T-shirts

| October 16, 2012 | 0 Comments
sustainable clothing

sustainable clothing

Sustainability is more than just building, it’s about being thoughtful and responsible with everything we do … including what we wear. Organic clothing has become very popular throughout the world and it’s companies like “Mighty Humble” that are leading the way in making good quality, organic product to those who want it.

Their products use certified organic cotton, with water based ink for printing the designs. Fair trade, no child labour and sustainable transportation is something they pride themselves on … and they are humble about their practices.

They believe that these days everyone should be practicing sustainability, so it’s no big deal that they do and are so aware. I believe that if corporations throughout the world actually had the same attitude they do about providing sustainable products, our world would be a better, healthier place to live in.

It’s small companies like this that can change the world. It’s attitudes like this that we need to become the norm. The young people and entrepreneurs  of tomorrow will lead the way in changing the path that our world is on.

It is my hope that companies like this one spring up everywhere so people have the choice to be sustainable in every part of their lives.

So hats off to Chris and his company in Brighton, England for thinking outside the box and in a way that will support our world for years to come.

mighty humble | Organic Graphic Print T-shirts, Clothing & Accessories.



How to Make a Lavender Wand and a Headpiece – Video

| October 13, 2012 | 0 Comments

DIY projects that use lavender and will last a long time that you can make yourself. Take a moment and learn a crafty way to use the lavender and other herbs from your garden.

Lynda Dowling of Happy Valley Lavender and Herb Farm demonstrates the technique used to make these crafty herbal gems.

How to Make a Lavender Wand and a Headpiece – Video

Home – Is Where We are Together

| October 4, 2012 | 1 Comment

As we travel together so far away from where we came from, this song seems more significant than ever … because we know home is where ever we are together. It’s not a place, it’s not a building – it’s us.

Together we are home, at home and are better stronger and happier than ever … Enjoy this beautiful song and moment shared between a dad and daughter … We love it and hope you do too.

Thanks to the dad and daughter team Jorge & Alexa Narvaez, for sharing their talent in this cover song …


School Daze

| October 2, 2012 | 1 Comment

What will you do about your daughter’s schooling? It’s one of the most asked questions we get. As we have been planning our exit from North America we have, of course, taken the education of our daughter into consideration, and as we move forward we do so with confidence that the educational choices in front of our girl are unlimited and do not have to fall under the mainstream mass production guidelines of the North American public school system.

school bus

school bus

We have also involved our daughter in the process and she’s been involved in the discussions.

School Days

Her school experiences have been mixed that’s for sure. We started her in an alternative school and she never wanted to go. I was the mom with the kid who hanging onto her leg begging her to stay.

It took until the middle of grade 2 for me to believe it would be okay to change schools, to overcome that feeling that she wouldn’t be able to adjust. A neighbor who was a teacher told me she’d have changed schools as soon as the problems didn’t get resolved and I had her in a new school within 48 hours.

It was a good move – immediately she loved her new school, despite the ups and downs. She had 4 amazing teachers at View Royal; Mrs. Westinghouse, Mrs. Nielly, Mr Fraser and Mr Vargas; she will never forget them and has their life lessons stored in her heart forever.

Reality Check

Since we were going to be leaving for Ecuador after the school year started she decided she wanted to go and start middle school.

There were 3 very specific reasons why: 1) she wanted a locker, 2) she wanted to eat lunch in the cafeteria and 3) she wanted to reconnect with friends after the summer and before she left for our adventure.

school sign

school daze

After 2 weeks of middle school she decided she was done and that was fine with us. She knew she had the option to leave if she wanted it and she took it. She learned a lot in that first 2 weeks of middle school and so did I.

The lock she was given for her locker didn’t work so they replaced it with another lock that didn’t work and she needed a teacher to help her open it up every time she needed to use it. Grade 6’s aren’t allowed to eat in the cafeteria; but 3 days a week they are allowed to go to a snack booth and buy a hot dog or piece of pizza then leave… so much for that.

And friendships were different. Things had changed. She saw dynamics that she questioned and she wasn’t comfortable with. She was experiencing what she considered a negative atmosphere and she spoke out. This time she was not letting the bullies win at school and after 3 years of being picked on she’d had enough.

Broken System

Why shouldn’t the kids in older grades learn to cohabit and treat kids younger grades with consideration, kindness and respect? She and many of the new grade 6’s were and still are being picked on by older kids who see that it’s ok to bully cause no one is really watching.

She was taking the public bus by herself for the first time and a grade 8 student from her former Girl Guide troop was always at the bus stop waiting at the same time making mean remarks in front of other kids. She stood up for herself after we discussed it, but why at 11 years old should she have to?

She was coming home bothered by how she was seeing kids being treated and there was no way to help her friends, at 11 years old she only has so many tools in her toolkit. What are kids actually learning in the schools and organizations they are forced to be part of?  It’s not how to be better people. Is school only about book smarts?

Life Lessons

Ecuador school kids

Ecuador school kids

Our 11-year-old learned that her expectation of middle school; what she saw on TV, what she imagined it would be, it was not.

What I saw when we went and waited for Paisley outside that last day of school was not what I expected. The kids who were the happy, vibrant, self-confident, outspoken individuals of elementary school, sat alone, walked with their heads down, stood just on the outside of the groups listening in… Have their spirits been broken? I hope not; my heart broke just a little as I watched quietly on the sidelines observing the cast of the bullied, excluded and exhausted.

I’m glad we are in a position to be able to offer our girl a choice in her educational path… and even happier it’s such an unusual one.

Home School

We are lucky to have very close friends that are a homeschooling family. Over the years they have shown us what successful education looks like.

The children and their commitment to their family is a model that is no longer followed by the mainstream population in North America but should be. The kids are smart, thoughtful, ask questions galore and get all the answers one way or another, they’re happy, resourceful self-starters, they all know they are loved … and they are not alone.

All the families in the homeschooling community that we have met have the same successful attitudes and outcomes and they all believe the same thing – the kids come first. These are lovely families; not without hardships, they are hard workers, self-confident, happy and passionate about their children’s ability to thrive on their terms … and we are now one of them.



Ecuador 101

Our expectation is that we will all become fluent in Spanish in the next 6 months; that in it self is a lot to learn and a worthwhile educational path. But it won’t stop there; we will be learning the customs, traditions, foods and infrastructure of Ecuador and we are going to learn about land resources and sustainability issues as we hunt for our property throughout the warmer regions of the country.

When we get settled we’ll decide the next part of our girl’s educational path, together. There are many options and opportunities for learning to come, including the Ecuadorian school system, but for now we can move forward confident that we will all learn as much as we possibly can in the months to come and we know that our girl will continue to learn worthwhile knowledge that she’ll use in the future.

the Butterflies are Gone

| September 30, 2012 | 2 Comments

It’s early in the morning and I wake up knowing I won’t get back to sleep now. Upstairs to make the best coffee I know; Sam has been roasting coffee for years and is a coffee expert and so he should be, he’s owner of 2% Jazz Coffee and has been one of Victoria’s most well-known coffee places since the mid 90’s … We’re lucky to be staying our last nights in town with them, they’ve been good friends for years and will always be.

backpacks for 6 months

backpacks for 6 months

I take my cup and go sit outside for a moment to look into the night sky brightly lit with an full moon that will guide us as we venture into the unknown. It looks like it will guide us well.

My butterflies are gone but just mine I think. Exciting but scary, we go forward moving together as a family holding hands tightly and supporting each other as we venture where many dare not to go. Change is frightening enough but having faith in a dream you’ve never seen is quite another matter.

I however, am a dreamer. I am not only only a dreamer but a believer. I have an enormous amount of faith in myself and my ability to achieve anything I set my mind to if I believe in it (thanks mom and dad!). If we work together as a family, we can achieve so much more than we can as individuals and we can make this dream work – if it’s workable … I am also a goal setter and I find it works, it’s a proven method for us. So, we have a dream with 6 months to get it started and the time starts NOW!

We’re getting on the plane today with open minds and hearts and hoping to find affordable land in a warm climate where we can be together as we work together to take care of ourselves as a family.

Our bags are packed and we’re traveling incredibly light considering we’re on the road for 6 months. We each have a large and a small back pack and we have one carry on between the 3 of us. We have learned to simplify our needs and really assess what is important to us as individuals. It’s been an enlightening start to this next journey.

Time to have one last coffee before I go wake the family to get ready to go to the airport. Long travel day but we’re ready for it; snacks, entertainment and blankets, it won’t be that bad. We’re being met at the airport in Quito and taken right to our hotel, then we sleep in …

So away we go amigos!

Eat Cilantro and Live Forever

| September 18, 2012 | 0 Comments

Yes that’s what the Chinese believed 2,000 years ago! Don’t know what to do with Cilantro? Here’s a great recipe for Mango Salsa that will start you off.

eat cilantro and live forever

eat cilantro

Herb Storage

| September 14, 2012 | 0 Comments

Where you keep your herbs after processing is an important consideration in order to maintain their integrity.

You can learn more about Sustainable Harvesting here or learn about local seed exchanges that support saving and exchanging heritage seeds.

herb storage

herb storage



Mango Salsa Recipe – Video

| September 14, 2012 | 0 Comments


Salsa is a yummy way to eat fresh. Here’s a twist on the tomato based salsa we’re used to in North America using mangos. We’re looking forward to eating fresh local mangos soon and so this recipe will become one of our staples. The local fresh herbs that can be found anywhere and are used in this recipe are cilantro, ginger and garlic and they add a combination of flavors that work so well together.

In this video learn how to turn mangos into a great side for any dish – easily.

Thanks once again to Richard White former owner of Hazelwood Herb Farm, for sharing this tasty recipe.

Mango Salsa Recipe – Video