November 2015 - Simply Samantha
blog reviews

Grab Green Review & GIVEAWAY

8:00 AM

I am so excited to share my review of these products! I will just go ahead and say it...

I LOVE these products!
I've tried a LOT of natural household products and I haven't found to many that I absolutely adore.
  Until now.
Grab Green Review and Giveaway
Grab Green is passionate about providing the best natural alternative natural cleaning products. They're philosophy is simple: To create products families can safely and confidently welcome into their homes.
That means they strive to use the safest ingredients in all their products. They guarantee that they will,
  • Never use harsh chemicals
  • List all the ingredients 
  • To consistently innovate
  • Take YOUR happiness seriously 

I don't know about you, but those are some things I can get behind.

Here is a little bit about some of their products that I got to try...

Laundry Pods:
These are probably my favorite of the ones I tried. I love that they use essential oils to add fragrance to the pods instead of harsh chemicals. My husband and I both have sensitive skin and we've found out if its the fragrance is not from an essential oil, its not very good on our skins. However, these laundry pods haven't given us any issues and leave our clothes smelling amazing!
And if you have a fur baby like we do, these are PERFECT for getting those pesky dog blankets a good wash and smelling less like wet dog and more like beautiful flowers!
And you don't have to worry about harsh chemicals hurting their sensitive doggy skin.

Dishwashing Pods
Just like the laundry pods, these are also scented with essential oils! I've never thought about having my dishwashing detergent scented but I gotta tell you, its kind of nice to open the dishwasher to clean and nice smelling dished! We don't run the dishwasher more then 2 times a week so these pods would last us a while!

Bruno also enjoyed the smell! He was curious to why mommy was on the floor taking pictures of the dishwasher ;)

They also have a TON of other household products! I was also able to try out their hand soap, bleach pods, and fragrance free pods! All were amazing and highly recommended!
You can check out more of their products here! 
Or check out your local health food store. 


Healthy Homemade Ranch

11:32 AM

Need a quick side to go with that veggie platter for thanksgiving? 
Or have a picky eater that refuses to eat turkey without dipping it in something on the side?
I may have something a recipe to help you out! 

I am considered the "ranch maker" in the family. After my mom found this recipe I starting making it so often its one of the recipes I can make with my eyes closed.

Now, before I share, I will state that this is not like the store bought dressing. The way I make it is more like a dip then dressing. However, I will show you how to thin it out to make it more like a dressing!
Healthy Homemade Ranch
 Healthy Homemade Ranch
1 cup of Just Mayo
1/2 Cup of Sour Cream (any kind, light, low fat, regular, vegan)
1/2 teaspoon dried chives
1/2 teaspoon dried parsley
1/2 teaspoon dried dill weed
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon onion powder
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper

Mix all together in a container of your choice (Tupperware, bowl, mason jar)
To thin it out, add as much or as little of your favorite type of milk (we use almond or cashew) to the ranch till you get the consistency you want.

And Tada! You are finished! 

 Healthy Homemade Ranch

Amy's Kitchen

The Final Stretch and Friday Favorites

10:35 AM

Oh the final stretch of finishing up this semester. Any college student knows that the last month of a semester can be the most draining and stressful.
I am very blessed to be attending my dream school from the comfort of my own home and at my own pace, but that doesn't mean its any less stress-full. I've taken double the class load I have now at my state college when I was getting my A.A, and even with half the school load now, I feel I have more work then I ever had (granted my state college was known for being pretty easy).
I have 3 papers due by the first week of December, plus other miscellaneous assignments.

And add on top of that typical adult stresses, with a low immune system, and I am also now fighting what I can only assume is laryngitis.

So bare with me dear readers, as I reach this semesters final stretch. I've been working on some post's, trying out some new products to share, cooking lots, and looking forward to the holiday season and the creative ideas that *might* turn into blog post if I am not to burnt out from school work.

Now, I don't want to leave you with a boring post about how stressful my life is! I would never do that.
So here are some of my favorite things that I want to share with you.


Oh what would I do without dear Amy's. She helps provide amazing healthy freezer meals for my husband and I on the nights we have commitments and I don't have the time to make a meal. I am personally a fan of the GF/DF Mac and Cheese and the husband love the burritos. They are available in most stores. I love their commitment to making great and healthy food filled with organic, non-gmo, and natural ingredients.

Elderberry Syrup
This was a introduction from my momma and I gotta say I'm hooked. Even though I sadly failed at making my own, every time I head to my mommas and I'm feeling a little under the weather I take two big spoonfuls and it always makes me feel better. Check out a great tutorial here from MommyPatomus.

Ok I don't want to rave about this too much because I need to write up a true review post for these products. But friends, I think I've found my new favorite laundry product. Stay tuned for more! 
Grab Green Natural Cleaning Products

The New Blog Look
I hope you guys like it. I didn't change it to much. I resized the template a tad and created a new logo. The last one just rubbed me the wrong way. This one is just so much cleaner. I'm going to work more on it when school is over for sure. Add some fun side bar items. But until then I hope you like it! 

All the Star Wars Things:
Seriously. Could December 17th get here.
Yes, I know it comes out the 18th, but I *might* have already purchased tickets for the 7pm showing on the 17th....#starwarsnerd

All this new photos, videos, merch, christmas items. The resistance to purchase all the new merch is strong in this girl! I want ALL THE STAR WARS THINGS.

Have a great weekend friends! 

cooking tips

Making Healthy Meals That Please The Husband

11:54 AM

I get asked this a lot:
"How did you get your husband to eat that?"
"He let's you make that for dinner?"
or my personal favorite,
"Since you're the only one gluten free why don't you just cook two separate meals?"

To be 100% honest, Steve has probably been the most open minded husband when it comes to my cooking. He's never suggested I make a separate gluten filled meal for him (Thank goodness because that's just to much work ;) ). I feel very blessed to have a meat loving husband that will eat my sometimes meatless and always gluten free meals. There has only been a few meals that I've made that he has protested that I not make again.
They usually contain the following:
Anything with Tofu
and (to my horror because I love it) Spaghetti Squash

And don't get me wrong, even though he is very open minded, I still get the "what is in this" glance from time to time.

BUT if you are struggling to get your husband on the healthy bandwagon, here are some of my personal tips for making healthy meals that please the husband!
Making Healthy Meals that Please the Husband

See what he will or will not eat:
This makes life easier and can make your meals better. You'll never know what he will and won't eat unless you ask. For the longest time I didn't think Steve liked sweet potatoes and chickpeas. Well he apparently likes them if made correctly. Now I have some more tasty options in the meatless department for dinner.

Learn Substitutions:
I highly recommend pinterest for this one. Learning how to substitute unhealthy ingredients to healthy ones is a great way to make a normal unhealthy husband loving meal healthy. For example, I've made a normal (mostly unhealthy) lasagna casserole and I substituted regular beef for pea-protein based Beyond Beef crumbles,cottage cheese for ricotta cheese, and of course GF quinoa based pasta instead of regular gluten filled pasta.. It's MUCH healthier and husband approved. I've also made killer asian meals by substituting the meat in the recipe with heartier vegetables.

Spice it up:
A bland healthy dish will most likely be the reason a husband will not like the meal. Many a time I've heard Steve say,
"Its good but needs more flavor"
Spice it up. I am not a big fan on "hot" spices (unlike my husband who insist's he can put hot sauce on anything), but I've found some awesome blends that are not huge on "hot" and more on flavor. Even if you are like me and my husband and have different versions of spice, find a balance and go with it.

Don't pressure yourself:
I think this tip is always on my list. Mostly because its true. You are going to make "Bleh" dishes every now and then. And sometimes you are going to give yourself an anxiety attack by thinking the entire dish needs to be make from scratch.
There is SO much on the store shelves these days that can help you make cooking a meal quick, easy, and most important, healthy.

Here are some of my favorite "Meal helpers"
Modern Table Meals (easy on their own or as a side)
Beyond Meat (great for quick meals like tacos to to add to your stir fry)
Simple Organic Mixes (spice up your meals)

And don't forget that a little meal prep on the weekends never hurt anyone. It will save you time (and your sanity) during the week.

I hope some of these tips help you! Below are some of Steve's favorite "husband approved" healthy meals.