How to Make Coconut Milk from Young Coconuts Step by Step

There is nothing on a hot day when I am feeling like I am dragging like having a cold glass of fresh coconut milk from a young coconut, sometimes referred to as Thai coconut. Available at more places than ever, you can find these little young coconuts at Asian markets or even at many Walmart stores if they have a fresh produce department.

There are many claims for using young coconuts in this way, one of which is that coconut liquid is so pure that people in very remote areas have used it successfully as plasma in emergencies.  I don’t know about that, but I do know that I have had a distinct pick up in energy whenever using a young coconut to make milk.  It really helps boost me without any added ingredients and give me a great push when I need one.

First of all, in buying young coconuts, you need to look for something that looks like a round cylinder that has a pointed top on it- like a dunce cap.  It looks like cream in color and is rather woody in appearance.  Young Thai Coconuts should not make any noise at all if you shake them, if they do, then they are no good.  Size does not seem to matter, although once in a while you might get one that is too young or too old and it is hard to scrape the meat out.

Once you have your coconut, keep it in the refrigerator until you are ready to use it.  When you are ready to make coconut milk,  you need to be sure you have:

  • A heavy cleaver or heavy strong chopping knife in a similar shape that is hard and not easily broken
  • A firm counter that is clear so you can whack the coconuts with the knife safely.
  • A blender or ideally a Vita Mix, but blender will do fine if it is a decent one
  • A strainer with fine mesh that you can pour the coconut  water through to strain particles
  • Glass to pour it into


Put the coconut firmly and flatly on a hard surface that will give you  room to swing your knife or cleaver

Fresh from the store- take off the wrap, but sometimes I am lazy.

Next, being careful with your hands and the knife, swing sharply into the top of the coconut, in a square shape.  It is easier to take off the plastic wrap and labels, but sometimes I get lazy and don’t.

Your coconut should look like this now:

You Might Have To Swing a Few Times for Each Cut

Again, it is easier to remove the plastic but sometimes I just don’t do it- silly, I know.  But you will be smarter than I am, right?  Once you have established the general square shape of the cuts (you may have to whack it a few times in each side to get through), then you will cut at diagonals across the corners in the same manner like this:

Once You See Liquid, The Lid Can Be Lifted And Fun Begins!

You may have to strike the coconut a few times in each area before you completely break through- some a really hard to get through, and others aren’t.  Once you are sure you get through, stick the tip of the strong knife into the lid and try to pry it off.  If it does not want to come up, you may need to strike it a time or two again, but be careful, these are very full of coconut water and you don’t want to waste any of it!

Once you lift the lid, it looks like this:

Notice the coconut water is right up to the top!

The coconut will most likely be very full.  Carefully pry off the lid if you can, and then using the strainer, pour the coconut water into the blender container making sure not to get pieces of the nut in the blender.  Be careful they can be really tiny!

Be careful not to get any shell or particles in the blender!


Once you have emptied the nut, then you can start scraping.  Before you do, however, double check the blender to be sure that you have not gotten any hard pieces of shell in there or woody pulp from the outside.  It can ruin the whole thing if you do.

You start by taking the lid and scraping the meat off of that, checking every piece to be sure there is no sharp shell or woody pulp from the outside on each piece.  If necessary, rinse under water to be sure.

Before you begin scraping, smell the meat and see the color.  These can range from violet colored meat to yellow in tone.  If it does not smell bad, then it will be fine.  Sometimes the meat will be very white and thick and harder to get out.  That is all right, it just won’t blend up as nicely- the coconut was picked a bit too late, but it is still okay to eat.

See the color of the meat? That means it is fine to use.

Scraping the coconut off of the lid- that dark brown part is okay

Notice the color of the meat- water is now out of the coconut

Notice how the meat looks as you scrape it out with a spoon

Using a spoon, scrape the meat from the coconut- check for shell pieces!

Note how the coconut looks as you are scraping out the meat

At this point, make sure you get all of the meat that you can out of the shell and off the lid being very careful to check for stray pieces of woody pulp and shell.  Once you are satisfied that you have done a good job, throw the coconut shell in the compost or garbage (no, don’t put in the garbage disposal unless you are wanting a new one and your husband or wife needs a good reason to get one).

Blend the coconut water and meat in the blender or Vita Mix a minute or so and you can either add vanilla, other fun things like pineapple, or honey if you really want to, but I never make it that far.  I drink it straight and love it as it is.

Ahhh, time for a drink!



My 4th of July Patriotic Makeup Fun

I had a choice.  I could either go to the fireworks for the 4th of July and be a wet blanket because I have managed to stay away from the crowds and boring fireworks year after year, or I could honor our son’s canceling his important day so we could all be together as a family and enjoy the fireworks at the lake for the Ring of Fire the first time EVER as a family.

I decided that it would take effort to do so, but I chose to go all out and be a crazy patriotic nut vs dark boring cloud of doom and depression.  So, folks, here is my crazy 4th of July look.  I have to see if any of the photos of my outfit turned out, but suffice it to say I was dressed completely in flags- including the outfit I designed a la Wonder Woman.


I had SO much fun doing this look- and quickly for the first time ever!

This was such fun- and it paid off- I had a RIOT!

I even found my coat I forgot that I had- a leather coat all red white and blue with stars and stripes- got an amazing deal on it too- like $29 or so.  Gorgeous coat.

And then I made a special effort to hoot and holler at each firework- remember I am a total averted anti holiday person on the 4th- and it paid off.  I have never had so much fun on the 4th in my whole life.

The lake was surrounded with fireworks for a few hours- it was unlike anything I have EVER seen.  All because I decided to go against my feelings and force myself to enjoy something I was set against liking.

And the crowd was fine and we even got the last available seats in a perfect location too.


MAC Semi Precious Mineralized Skinfinish Swatches

Well, my last hurrah for a while, I am a huge fan of MAC’s Mineralized Skinfinishes also known online as MSFs.  I find that they work especially well in lieu of foundations and find great results with them on older clients if I do makeup on them.  It is a liberation from foundation and really does a great job de-aging in appearance.

Here are my swatches of the following items from the MAC Semi-Precious Collection:

  • Goldstone MSF
  • Crystal Pink MSF
  • Pearl MSF
  • Rose Quarts MSF
  • Musky Amethyst
  • Feeling Flushed Mineralize Blush

I will take photos of the pans of product when I can, but for now at least I could post swatches for you all.

MAC Semi-Precious MSF swatches and blush and lipstick too.

MAC Semi-Precious MSF Swatches w Musky Amethyst and Feeling Flush comparisons

Fresh from my garden- excuse the no makeup appearance and puffy eyes. Musky Amethyst vs Riveting Rose on my lips

As for commentary, here is what I think as a person most sensitive to colors.

MAC Goldstone:  Dark outer area is a shimmery version of MAC Pink Power from the Wonder Woman Collection- the center stripe.  The inner splotch is very similar to Refined MSF- a highly sought after limited edition MSF from previous collections.

MAC Crystal Pink:  Very icy rose pink which will be a beautiful highlighter for those who love pinks.  The center is similar but slightly more pink that Wonder Woman Pink Power center stripe.

MAC Pearl MSF:  Beautiful glowy golden beige outer color and the inner color is my favorite of all of them- like a dark stereo rose with a twist of berry added.  This will make a great eye color too.

MAC Rose Quartz MSF: Outer area is a nice warm pink which interestingly has a slightly more berry appearance than Petticoat, one of the only pink MSFs ever to be released by MAC.  The inner area is a fascinating beige color which has tremendous depth to it due to the pastel greens mixed in.  Unfortunately the center splotch is extremely glittery so it is not good on the face- I do find it to work on the eyes for accents and such.  It is the only part that I find to be this annoying glittery.  It is too bad because the color depth is unique.

Musky Amethyst goes on like death warmed over- like the dead gothy type colors but more sheer.  I am not sure about this one.  It is gorgeous in the tube, but lacks some depth on the lips.  Having said that, on dark skinned people, this will ROCK- so if you are darker, give it a try.

Feeling Flushed Mineralize Blush. I like this, but after comparing it again with my favorite Overdyed Blush from the Denimish collection a few months ago, I am not THAT wowed with it.  It is a lilac toned berry color that still has a touch of magenta, but no shimmer or glittery feeling like other Mineralize blushes have had in the past.

Final comments- this collection of MSFs has fantastic variety and possibilities for eyeshadows, contour, blush enhancement and highlighting. I plan to do some videos on my unique use of MAC MSFs in the future- it is one of the best things to ever hit the market in my opinion.  I find that I can use them on my entire face and be ready to face a day looking much better than with foundations.



Tarte True Blood Cheekstain and LipSurgence

Tarte True Blood Cheek Stain WOW,  Words Can Not Describe

Boy Was I Surprised When I Tried This On!

Before I discovered a change in my situation, I had signed up to buy Tarte True Blood Cheek Stain.  I have loved Tarte Cheek Stains for a long time.  I love to use them not only on myself but on clients- especially those with dry or aging skin.

The effect is a youthful glow which gives a healthy look to the skin and is very natural in appearance.

When I ordered this Cheek Stain, I could not believe my eyes when I opened it up- it was LOADED with gold chunky GLITTER.  Okay, I like shimmer and glitter and iridescence more than many people, but this was ridiculous!  I could not believe that anyone would make a natural cheek stain with this much gaudy glitter in it.

I tried it on my cheeks and my daughter’s first response was, “Wow, Mom, it looks like a busted disco ball, I mean, if you REALLY love glitter I suppose you could wear it…”

This coming from the girl who just about takes a bath in glitter.  I never thought anything would be too much for her!

I put it on my lips as well- it is very pretty on the lips and thankfully the scent and texture were not repulsive so I kept it on all day.  I have to say it is gorgeous on the lips- but it is an awfully expensive humungous lip gloss to have on hand!

Here are some photos I took for you- it is hard to see the detail in these photos- as the glitter was hard to capture, but I finally got a really good closeup for you.

Please remember, this is just to show you what it looks like- I had no makeup on at all other than the cheek stain and I have not been feeling well so I look pretty icky.  But, at least you can see the cheek stain!

Tarte True Blood Cheek Stain and LipSurgence and MAC Hibiscus

Can you SEE the glitter? That was ONE swipe!

I swatched it with one swipe on my hand and was shocked at the heavy load of glitter.  I also swatched Tarte LipSurgence for True Blood alongside of MAC Hibiscus lipstick.

Here are photos of the True Blood Tarte Cheek Stain on my face and lips.

Tarte True Blood Cheek Stain on face and lips NO OTHER MAKEUP

No Other Makeup but Tarte True Blood Cheek Stain on Cheeks and Lips.

A Little Closer- Only Makeup On is Tarte Cheek Stain True Blood on Lips and Cheeks

Can You See the Sparkles Yet? (No other makeup on face)

Now I noticed that the Cheek Stain went on blotchy- it was raining just before I took the face photos so part of the Cheek Stain washed off my face- it still was a bit blotchy- but I tried to apply it so you could see it well.

All in all, my impressions of Tarte True Blood Cheek Stain is unless I want to save it to use on New Year’s Eve or for a day when I am dressing up totally in gold, I have no use for this.  It would work at night layered with other products on top – perhaps a cream or powder with gold shimmer in it and layered for more subtlety, but for the price, as my husband put it, this Cheek Stain looks like I have a sunburn and am trying to cover it up with glitter.

I am not sure it is going to be good on the lips either- although it didn’t seem to bother me.  I prefer the Tarte LipSurgence for True Blood.  THAT is a nice product.  More on that soon.


From Blah to WOW! My New Iridescent Shoes

I can’t wear sandals unless they are leather lined. My feet just can not tolerate them- synthetic linings tear my feet up and I can not walk in them.

Recently I found a pair of bone colored sandals that were leather and leather lined from the Born company.  These sandals are so beautiful, but I just am not a fan of the  bone color.

Being a color fanatic, I decided to do something extreme- I designed shoe polish with duochrome iridescent pigments in them, and use it to change the appearance of my shoes.

I have done this with my colored cowboy boots and it has lasted up to two years before it had to be refreshed.

So, here are my bone colored sandals:

BEFORE the magic

These are cute- but they are about to get a lot cuter...

So, after photographing this shoe for you, I went to work.

I got a clear shoe polish that comes in a cream jar, and then using some tiny screw top jars I put a little bit of polish in the jar and then added a combination of TKB Trading Sparks micas (which are similar to MAC Reflects Glitter but a tiny bit smaller).

I used a tiny bit of Reflects here and there to add some dimension but most of it was TKB Trading Company’s Sparks. I used aqua, purple, blue, and pink on the flowers with a touch of the noble sparks which are like the moonlight on the snow in the dead of winter in the dark.

For the body of the shoe, I used holographic pigments from Sweetscents.com.  I used a little bit of TKB Trading’s Taurus Orion and Sweetscents Lover’s Moon, which is a holographic multi-dimensional color shifter that goes from lime green to lemon yellow.

Once I got the polish mixed well, I took a little bit of plastic wrap and wrapped it around my finger and used my finger to apply the polish to the shoe in the areas that I wanted to polish.

I let it dry and once it did, I buffed it off with a soft cloth and then reapplied again for greater depth.

And here is the result:

Using pigments and micas to dress up my shoes worked!

From Bone to Peacock Iridescent! Now THESE are some special shoes!

Using duochrome and holographic pigments makes my shoes GLOW!

Color Shifting Shoes, can it GET any more satisfying than that?

Pastel Peacock Shoes are Much Better Than Bone to Me!

Pastel Color Shifting Peacock Shoes- SO much fun to wear now.

So, now I am a happy owner of some really unique shoes and they are much more fun for me to wear- being a color and texture addict I just HAVE to have to add a twist to *normal*.

By the way, this process only works when you do it on leather- synthetics won’t hold the polish at all and will wear off almost immediately when you wear them.


SPRING IS HERE FINALLY! Wanna see my lilacs?

It has been a LONG winter.  Today’s exploration of color is a collection of photos of the long awaited flowers in my yard which is what I hang on to through the winter- waiting to see their beautiful faces again.

Today I am going to take you on a walk through our lilac collection- first up


The Hard To Find Lilac

I looked all over for this guy!

Mr Lincoln- Hard to Find but SO WORTH IT!

A true Blue Lilac

This is a genuine blue lilac called Mr Lincoln.  When the phone company destroyed our beloved Mr Lincoln lilac, I looked all over for another one of these guys.

We were really blessed to find TWO of them- the stock had been polluted by other varieties so it was very hard to find the original pure Mr Lincolns.  The fragrance is unique and the blue color unusual too.

So far, the little creepy rodents have not attacked this one during winter!


This really IS YELLOW!

Primrose Lilac

Yellow Lilac Primrose with Belle De Nancy Peeking Through!

Yellow Primrose with Belle De Nancy Peeking Through!

This is our yellow lilac called Primrose.  It is a light buttercream yellow color which looks ivory white when open.  The fragrance is very pretty although not as intense as the Mr Lincoln, but it was supposed to be a fragile lilac and we planted this when it was two inches tall- literally!  That was about 10 years ago and look at it now!


Belle De Nancy- Our Miracle Lilac

Belle De Nancy- Our Miracle Lilac

Belle De Nancy is a beautiful pink lilac with full blossoms and this year it is just gorgeous.  An amazing fragrance, this lilac is pleasant to sit next to on our porch and enjoy the intoxication of this and our Primrose which lives right next to it.

It is our miracle lilac because when it was in the ground only two years, a new friend came over and I was upset because our Belle De Nancy was almost dead- it was dry, and was not going to make it and I was so upset.

My friend stormed out the door and ran over to the dead looking little bush and screamed at it in the name of Jesus and told it that it would live and not die so death was not an option and it better get in line with the way things were going to be.

She was hollering at the top of her lungs and at first I did not know what to do.  After she was done, she came in and talked to me like nothing happened, so I just continued in the same way.

The next day the plant was back to life- there was no way it would recover that quickly no matter what  naturally.

So this is called our miracle lilac.


Charles Joly

Meet Charles Joly

Charles Joly is about 20 years old now and he is a beauty.  The flowers are a gorgeous violet red color with double blooms and the fragrance is medium.  It keeps growing despite having some branches die back and we really enjoy this bush- it is a pretty one.


Our regular old lilac busy

And last but not least our last healthy lilac just a plain old pink lilac- no name or classification but this is the fullest it has been in many years too.

We have a rare French lilac that the stupid rodents girdled badly this year so I think I might have to call my friend and see if she can come over for a visit- she has not been here in many years….after all, she is the Lilac Doctor.  ;)


Want A Decadent Pie?

Well, today as the Homeschool Expo nears the end of a fourth and exciting day, I am once again thankful for all of the fun and exciting people I have met who understand what it is like to have the pressure of being at home and multi-tasking more than those who send their children out to someone else to teach.

In honor you all who have asked me to post some good recipes that are delicious as well as being useful for gluten free people, I am posting the recipe I made today for you to try out.

This is perfect for summer, winter, or any time, and also extremely useful for those on GLUTEN FREE, RAW FOODS, and/or ANTI-FUNGAL diets.




  • 2 c  raw almonds
  • 3/4 c soft whole dates NO PITS and soaked in water for at least an hour (you can use less if you don’t like much sweet)
  • 1/2t vanilla
  • 1/4-1/2t sea salt

Put nuts in food processor and chop into small pieces- not powdery.  Through the top of the processor, while chopping, add the sea salt.  Once the nuts are chopped well, add the date pieces- soaked dates cut into chunks – they will work better if they are cut in pieces first.  Add vanilla and chop into a moist crusty dough.  Pat into pie plate that can be put into the freezer.  Glass is best, but any pie pan will do- just not aluminum.


  • 4 avocados that are ripe
  • 1/2 t vanilla
  • dash of cinnamon
  • 1/3- 1/2 c maple syrup (can use honey but not as good)
  • 1/3 – 1/2 c carob powder- roasted has most flavor, but any will do.
  • 1/4 t sea salt or to taste.

No need to wash the processor after doing the crust, just put in the filling ingredients as is.  Cut the avocado halves into large chunks so that it will process well in the processor.  Add rest of ingredients and run the food processor to blend until smooth and creamy.

Pour the carob cream into the waiting crust and put into the freezer for a few hours.  Can be eaten when partly frozen, or fully frozen, once cut into pieces, they can thaw a while to be softer or eaten like a frozen treat.

This pie sounded disgusting when I first tried it out and I was hesitant to try it, but our family went nuts over it and we have made it for years now.  Everyone that I give this recipe to ends up loving it even if they don’t like avocados.

And you can work with it- if you have less avocados one day, just make a smaller pie or use a shallower pan.

Well, there is my recipe for the day.  Enjoy!  Let me know what you think of it too!


The Blogging Baby Is Born

You know, this blog has been a long time coming.   For some reason I have a mental block when it comes to blogging.

I can build computers and have for years.  I can build basic web sites.  I can design some of the most intricate and complicated designs in clothing, jewelry and art, but when it comes to blogging, I am STYMIED!


Seems like all I have lately...

So, bear with me and if any of you kindly souls who are blogging experts in WordPress feel like you might help me, I would be SO thankful.