Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Recipe: Kid-friendly breakfast smoothie

Actually, this can be enjoyed anytime. I call it a breakfast smoothie that's most often when we make ours. It's packed with do many vitamins and minerals that no matter when you drink it, you will always feel good about it. It also tastes 'deliciouso', as my kids like to say.

Here's the deal: I don't measure things. I am providing you with a recipe with approximate measurements, because I normally just throw a bunch of ingredients in the blender and blend away. The amazing thing is, there is no wrong way to make a smoothie. It's all about whatever tastes good to you and your family.

1/2 cup 0%fat greet yogurt
1 1/2 cups fresh spinach
1/3 cup peanut butter
1 large banana
7 or 8 large strawberries, frozen
Couple handfuls of blueberries (I'm talking Li'l Bit sized hands.)
Few splashes of water, or 100% fruit juice.

Don't be intimidated by the won't really taste it. The secret is to blend the spinach on high with the yogurt and juice for several minutes until there are no spinach chunks left. I imagine chewing a spinach chunk would ruin the smoothie experience. Then add the rest of the ingredients, blend until combined and smooth, and enjoy!

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Potective Style: Braided Crown with hidden ends

My babies left me recently to head down south for a family reunion. They were only gone for 4 days, and while I knew they were in good hands with my dad and sister, I was beside myself with worry. My family always jokes with me that my kids come with more instructions than a new swing set (at least I think they're joking), though I can't figure out what the big deal is. Make sure they wear sunscreen. Remind them to brush/floss. Don't let them near water unless someone is DILIGENTLY watching them. No soda. No candy.   No rated R movies. They will try to convince you that they are allowed to watch 'Family Guy', but they are NOT. You know, typical mom stuff. :)

Obviously, one thing I do not want them to have to worry about is hair. So before travelling or overnights away from mommy, I like to make sure the girls' hair is styled and protected. Here is the style that Li'l Bit rocked for the weekend. These pictures were taken 5 days after her hair was styled, and she DID swim without a cap, and she DID sleep without her satin pillowcase, and that IS lint, or grass, or something else in her hair that I did not see until looking at the pictures. But its a cute style, so I thought I'd share anyway:

Starting with freshly washed and conditioned hair, Li'l Bit wore plaited hair for a day to stretch it out. I have found that her hair is easier to braid when it has been stretched somewhat, and I always braid her hair when it is dry. Her hair tends to break when  I braid it while it is wet. 

I parted the hair from ear to ear, but the part was not directly on top of her head, it was back more toward her crown area. Then I began to braid her hair. I freestyled the braids on top, but the ones in the back were braided straight up toward the part. The loose hair (after the cornrowed parts) were braided. Then I started on the left of her head and cornrowed the loose braids toward the center. Then I went to the right side and also braided those to the center. I twisted and tucked and pinned it all under itself until I liked the way it looked. (Did that make sense? I dont know how else to explain it.) I used two bobby pins, and plopped those two cute little clips on top just because she wanted me to. :)

See the hair at the bottom that is left out? I intentionally leave that hair out whenever I am braiding/styling her hair. It is not as long as the rest of her hair, so I am afraid of pulling it. In addition to that, it hurts her if that hair is tugged at all. Since I am more concerned with her comfort and the health of her hair than I am with how it looks, that section is always left out. :)

I really like this style, and I am going to try and get another week out of it. :)

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Wash n go with side braids

Ally asked me to style her hair this way, and I thought it was too cute not to share. 

Ally has been a travelling li'l lady recently; and after spending two weeks in Illinois with family, stopping home   for a few days before travelling to North Carolina for a family reunion, her hair was in need of some TLC. For the most part, Ally maintains her hair well. She remembers (most of the time) to braid it at night, and moisturizes it daily. But as all of us curly haired girls know, that's not really enough. That's where mommy steps in. :)

I gave her hair a protein treatment with a homemade concoction  I threw together. I used an egg, some Extra Virgin Olive Oil, and some honey. I didn't measure anything (except the egg; I used one), so there is no recipe. I thought I used too much honey, because her hair was super sticky while I was applying the guck, but when I rinsed it out her hair was instantly softer and healthier looking. So maybe it was ok. 

I washed her hair using Nubian Heritage's African Black Soap. We have been using this for about 2 months, and we no longer use shampoo in my house. We all have healthier scalps because of it, and it does not dry our hair like shampoos do. 

After cleansing, I did an ACV (apple cider vinegar) rinse, and conditioned with a Tresemme conditioner. I applied Shea Moisture's Curl Enhancing Smoothie throughout her hair, and parted a section of it off for braids. The part is not down the middle of her head, it is more toward the right side because she wanted it to fall in her face somewhat. It is for this reason that I probably would modify this style if I were doing it on the little girls' hair, I like to try and keep their hair out of their faces. 

I used a little bit of Eco Styler Gel for the braids, but the only thing in the rest of her hair is the Curl Enhancing  Smoothie. 

 I used a blow dryer with a diffuser on the medium heat setting to dry her hair about 90%. As you can see, the SM smoothie doesn't do much to define her curls, but it is great for adding moisture and shine. It also prevented her hair from frizzing up too much, and since we were going for the 'effortless' look anyway, we both loved how it came out.

 The plan is to turn this wash and go into a braid out by spritzing with water and braiding it at night. She does have swim lessons tomorrow, so we shall see how that works out. We will try and check back in tomorrow with an update. :)

Saturday, June 23, 2012

LI'l Bit's first wash n go using Kinky Curly

It's been a long time coming. I'm not sure why I have not used Kinky Curly's Curling Custard (KCCC) on Li'l Bit's hair before; I have had amazing results on both mine and Ally's hair using it. I think because the product is a bit on the pricier side, I did not want to "waste" it on Li'l Bit's tiny coils because I thought there was no way this product could capture the 'wet' look on her hair.....boy was I wrong.

I love that li'l 'fro. :)

Will you LOOK at that definition?! And can you believe that her hair is almost (I'd guess about 90%) dry in this picture?! Even better; the only thing we did to protect her hair at night was have her sleep on a satin pillowcase, and her hair stayed this defined for 3 days. I just had her shake her head, fluffed where fluffing was needed, and there was perfection. :)

I will be trying this out again, as I plan on doing a comprehensive review of KCCC and it's effects on all of us curly girls in the Different Kinds of Curls household. When I do, I will have more pictures and information to share. But for now, I was excited..and I wanted to share. :)

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