Friday, November 30, 2007


I Took The Handmade Pledge!

All my family and friends are getting handmade things this year. It will either be my or a fellow crafty persons swag.

Unplug the holiday machine and go handmade!


Friday, November 02, 2007

Cause I love E. Jean

Dear Queen E. Jean,

Thank you for writing things that women need to hear, in a world where people only tell us what we want to hear it is a wonder that we are as unhappy as we profess to be.
I was recently diagnosed with a permanent quickly degenerative spinal cord and vertebrae disease. They have no treatments at the time because it is so rare and couldn't have prevented it.
I felt as though I went from Hero to zero. Slowly I kept shutting off things in my life as my pain increased. But in the confusion I seemed to have forgotten to open a window.

After reading your column for a few months I began to question the way I was dealing with my new life. Instead of letting it be an opportunity I let it feel like a sentence. Your no holds barred but gentle advice sparked something in me I thought was forgotten.

I feel hope and excitement again. As you are often telling us, in the grand world of all things fabulous the good will always outshine the bad.

Keep your torch flaming, and thank you you being a northern star to women looking for a way.

Sincerely, J. Ella

Editor-in-Cheez (BAM music review)

10/3/2005 From E. Jean Carroll, Elle magazine "Ask E.Jean"

Miss J. Ella!

You adorable kumquat!
You will prevail!I love your letter! Thanks so much! You are a striking combination of talent, charm, warmth, and pizzzzazaaazzzz!

You, my darling, have inspired ME.

Ravishing Regards,
E. Jean

Sulfite Free Food Web

Sulfite Free Food Sources

Here are some website addresses for places that sell Sulfite free foods and ship them.

Also some of them have GREAT recipe links for Sulfite free/Vegan/Vegetarian cooking too!

So Surf and enjoy and be healthy!

There are more and I invite you to send me names so I can keep updating the site!

Thanks and Be SAFE!!!

Red Lentil and Corn Chili

Perverted Red Lentil Corn Chili

Perverted Red Lentil Corn Chili

1 small sweet onion, chopped
1 tbsp olive oil
1 cup frozen corn/fresh
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon Cumin
1 teaspoon red pepper powder
1 tablespoon Chili powder
1 teaspoon white/pink peppercorns grated
3 cups vegetable stock
1 cup dried red lentils
dash salt
1 inch fresh ginger/1 teaspoon powdered (I used a nutmeg grater worked like a dream!)
1/4 cup fresh cilantro, Finely chopped

I set the lentils and the veg stock to heat up. Add the chili,pepper (white/pink and red powders)cumin and salt.

Then I mince the onion, garlic, cilantro, and grated ginger and put in corn, pull to the side while the lentils and stock simmer up to a boil (about 10 minutes) then I add in the vegetables and bring to a boil once then turn to low and simmer for about 20 minutes.

Take off heat and let sit for about 2 minutes and serve! This is great with vegan cheeze and tortilla chips. Best servd with corn muffins on the side.

Winter Yums

Recipe for the winter cold

I made this recipe up after finding that I had a billion potatoes and onions and lentils.

Heat 4 cups Veg stock/bouillion in pot
Add 1 cup Lentils
1 potato cubed
1/2 onion minced
2 cloves garlic minced
1 carrot chopped
1 celery stock chopped
1 TBSP Paprika
1 inch Ginger grated
1 tsp cinnamon
dash salt and pepper

Add everything into the pot, heat until boiling and then turn down to med/low heat and cover loosely.

Wait about 30 minutes until beans are tender

Serve with warm bread or pita chips.

Pita Chips:

2 whole pitas divinded and cut into triangles
coat lightly with olive oil
combine the folowing:
1 tsp Rosemary
1 tsp Oregano
1 tsp Paprika
1 bulb garlic crushed
1 inch ginger minced (or 1/2 tsp ginger powder)
1 tsp Red pepper flakes
1 tsp crushed basil

Take dry herbs and mix together thoroughly. Lightly coat the pita chips and bake in 350 degree oven for 30 minutes flipping after 15.

Good eating!

Vegan Recipe extrravaganza!

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Vegan summer salads!

Cucumber Bulgur Salad

1 cup bulgur

2 cups boiling water

2-3 tbsp lemon juice

¼ cup olive oil

1 tbsp fresh mint

2-3 cloves garlic cloves chopped

Salt and pepper

1 large cucumber sliced

1 large carrot grated

1 bunch green onions chopped

¼ cup parsley

Place bulgur in bowl. Pour boiling water over bulgur. Let stand 20-30 minutes. Mix Olive oil, lemon juice, mint, garlic, salt and pepper; pour over bulgur. Let sit until cool, mix with vegetables Garnish with fresh mint sprig.

Makes 4 servings

Lentil Salad with Thyme Dressing

1 Cup Lentils

1-3/4 cup water

½ cup green pepper chopped

½ cup red pepper chopped

½ cup zucchini chopped

½ cup veganrella/Vegan Gourmet Vegan mozzarella shredded/cubed

Thyme Dressing

½ cup fresh lemon juice

½ cup olive oil

1 clove garlic crushed

2 tablespoons fresh thyme chopped

Salt and pepper to taste

Combine lentils with water in saucepan, bring to a boil. Cover and simmer for 20 minutes. Remove from heat and let cool. Whisk all dressing ingredients together and cover lentils completely.

Add vegetables and chill 2-4 hours MINIMUM.

Makes 6 servings

Couscous Salad

1 & ½ cup Vegetable broth/Stock

1/3 cup currants/dried cranberries

¾ tsp Cumin

1 cup couscous

½ cup Olive oil

3 tablespoons lemon juice

Salt and Pepper

1 bunch Green onions minced

4 tablespoons Pine Nuts/Sunflower seeds

Combine first three ingredients in a pan and bring to a boil. Remove from heat and stir in couscous, cover and let sit until cool. Fluff with a fork. Whisk Olive oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper. Add Onions dried fruit and cumin to couscous and cover with dressing, refrigerate an hour before serving

Makes 6 servings

Thursday, April 05, 2007

Vegan Pasta ala Pomodoro

KJ’s Pasta al Pomodoro

4-8 ripe vines on tomatoes (chopped)
4-8 cloves chopped fresh garlic
¼- ½ cup fresh oregano
1-2 cups fresh parsley chopped
¼ - ½ cup chopped fresh cilantro
1-2 small sweet onion chopped
½ - 1 cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1-2 tablespoon(s) sugar
½ package cooked pasta (double recipe for full box)


Heat olive oil and add garlic, onion and sauté for 5 minutes. Add herbs and stir, simmer for 10 more minutes. Finally add tomatoes and sugar and simmer for 15-20 more minutes. Add sugar for the last 5 minutes.

Serve over pasta and sprinkle with pepper and vegan parm if desired.

Serves 2-4 people

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Freakin Awesome

So another shour out Henna Sooq of Canada!

She is a mom AND an enterpreneur!

Please visit her and get your Indian Henna and accesories on!

Thursday, June 14, 2007

My new pretties....coming soon to a lobe near me

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1 gauge...pretty

Books to Read: Before I die

Slowly but surely I will read these books...

Dune Series:
By Frank Herbert

Dune: House Atreides

Dune: House Corrino

Dune: House Karkonnen

Dune: Chapter House

Children of Dune

Heretics of Dune

The Road to Dune

God Emporer of Dune

Dresden Files: Jim Butcher

White King

Proven Guilty

Death Masks

Blood Rites

Dead Beat

Small Favor -To be released SOON!

To be continued. . .

Monday, June 11, 2007

Some of my Favorite things...

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Can I say again how freaking awesome these are?

They are my new wedding plugs custom made by Will from Frozenfire located on

I highly reccomend them and wil buy them again.


Some more of my favorite things?

Claire De Lune Cloth Pads

I actually don't mind my period anymore. Seriously, I am going to buy more as gifts.

And lastly my eczema LOVES this new soap. Its Vegan, its got charcoal and gets rid of eczema and acne in one daily washing.

Its the Charcoal Eczema and Acne soap. She is currently making new Batches but Natural Body Spa by Spoiled Rotten Soaps is the bomb diggity.

And last but not least. Hair sticks that are a unique as you are by Night Blooming. A fellow Minnesotan (though I am now a NY transplant) Makes your hairstick dreams come true.

Can't say it enough. Buy from individual crafters and buck the system.


Friday, June 08, 2007

Bippster Balls

Prototype A.

I am going to look into knitted hair thingies too. But these come in Light Pink Stripe, Black Stripe and color shown.

I am trying to get my hands on Purple, blue and green.

These are metal free and wet knotted so as to last, no glue used, no place to snage delicate strands.

More to come...

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Kind Outreach First Web Newsletter

Hey there, its JUNE and Kind Outreach is FREAKIN busy yo!

First and Foremost we have literature now in conjunction with VERA House and Spay and Neuter Syracuse to hand out to families relocated by domestic violence, displaced by catastophy or just down on their luck.

Also we have Info packs to give to schools and educators on Humane education and are still plugging away at a curriculum.

We are in need of leashes, kennels, old carriers, portable water bowls, animal themed coloring books, reams of paper, cameras/film, Ace Bandages, Sterile gauze,Newspapers, and dog/cat food. We are getting into kitten season and also are looking for foster homes and "scholarships" for neuters and spays.

If you can help us, give us a ring.

We want to have a Recipe Book (Cook Book) gathered with vegan/vegetarian recipes to sell for a buck or two for KOHEP's first of hopefully annual fundraising effort to support Spay and Neuter Syracuse, Vera House, Humane Association, Wandering Paws , and others too numerous to mention. If they help kids in crisis and the animals they love, we will help with whatever we can.

We are also trying to formulate a Can drive and Change for Change drive. If you or your business would like to host a can/change drive give us a rin and we will drop off a container or pick up your cans.

We will be getting ready to do some outreach at Summer Events and will be recruiting for volunteers! There are ferals to trap at Toomey and there are going to be kittens soon that need to be trapped tested and dealt with.

To save paper we will NOT be doing a newsletter but info will be e-mailed and available on our blogger site

Speaking of the web:

48 kittens! Plus the 6 Amy has! Pass it along to your friends. (le SIGH people really do suck...Amy, wandering paws, SANS, and other awesome kitty huggers RULE BTW Jeci hug Maggie and Talia for me)

And just to keep things interesting:

Won't YOU be our neighbor?

Short and Sweet, just like KOHEP

Heads up, paws forward,
"It is not enough to have compassion, one must act." -His Holiness the Dalai Lama

Joy (KJ) Manlove & Amber Coon
Kind Outreach and Humane Education Project
Syracuse, NY 13210

Thursday, June 07, 2007

Shea Butter Deep Conditioner Recipe and Keen Favorites!

Keen's Make Your Own Shea Deep Conditioner Recipe
(Fox's Recipe...Bastardized!)

1 Tablespoon Shea Butter REFINED! (Gets rid of the stink of unrefined)
1 Tablespoon Cone-Free Conditioner. I used Strawberries and Champagne by vo5,
and Kiwi Lime Squeeze By VO5.
1/2 Tablespoon Jojoba Oil
A few drops of essential oils (I used Rose with the strawberries and cream and Cypress with the Kiwi lime)

Mix together, heat for 10 seconds in the microwave, stir and use on damp ends or all over wherever hair needs moisture. Shampoo out.

Also...I have found these new conditioners that are great and no silly-cones (silicones)

They do have silk proteins and Honey though...

VO5 Silky Lavender Luster
Water (Aqua), Cetyl Alcohol, Cetrimonium Chloride, Stearalkonium Chloride, Stearyl Alcohol, Steareth 21, Glyceryl Stearate, Hydrolyzed Silk, Tocopheryl Acetate, Biotin, Niacinamide, Polysorbate 20, Ascorbic Acid, Panthenol, DMDM Hydantoin, Disodium EDTA, Fragrance (Parfum), Red 33 (CI 17200), Blue 1 (CI 42090)

VO5 Silky Champagne Kisses
Water (Aqua), Cetyl Alcohol, Cetrimonium Chloride, Stearalkonium Chloride, Stearyl Alcohol, Steareth 21, Glyceryl Stearate, Hydrolyzed Silk, Tocopheryl Acetate, Biotin, Niacinamide, Polysorbate 20, Ascorbic Acid, Panthenol, DMDM Hydantoin, Disodium EDTA, Fragrance (Parfum), Red 33 (CI 17200), Yellow 10 (CI 47005)

Good Stuff. If you are an Anti-honey vegan. Well Make yer OWN!
Burts Bees Shea and Grapfruit Deep Conditioner
Water, Cetrimonium bromide & Cetearyl alcohol (coconut oil emulsifier), Sucrose ester (natural sugar ester), Sucrose ester (natural sugar ester), Vegetable glycerin, Honey, Shea butter, Glucose (sugar), Betaine (sugar beet), Grapefruit oil, Orange Oil, Lemon Oil, Tangerine Oil, Lime Oil, Ginger Oil, Petitgrain Oil, Arabic gum (natural thickener), Polysorbate 60 (sugar emulsifier), Glucose Oxidase & Lactoperoxidase (natural perservative)

Burts Bees Sugarbeet and Grapefruit Conditioner
Water, cetrimonium bromide & cetearyl alcohol (coconut oil emulsifier), sucrose ester (natural sugar ester), vegetable glycerin, honey, betaine (sugar beet), hydroxypropyltrimonium oligosaccharide (sugar moisturizer), marula oil, glucose (sugar), grapefruit oil, orange oil, lemon oil, tangerine oil, lime oil, ginger oil, petitgrain oil, polysorbate 60 (sugar emulsifier), glucose oxidase & lactoperoxidase (natural preservative).

Burts Bees More Moisture Rasberry and Brazil Nut Conditioner
Water, centrimonium bromide & cetearyl alcohol (coconut oil emulsifier), sucrose ester (natural sugar ester), vegetable protein, wheat protein, betaine (sugar beet), vegetable glycerin, honey, marula oil, glucose (sugar), brazil nut oil, raspberry extract, bergamont oil, orange oil, eucalyptus oil, fennel seed oil, strawberry extract, mandarin petitgrain oil, litsea cubeba oil, vanillin oil, davana oil, polysorbate 60 (sugar emulsifier), fragrance glucose oxidase & lactoperoxidase (natural preservative).

Green Tea and Fennel Conditioner
Water, centrimonium bromide & cetearyl alcohol (coconut oil emulsifier), sucrose ester (natural sugar ester), betaine (sugar beet), vegetable glycerin, honey, marula oil, glucose (sugar), fennel seed extract, jewelweed extract, green tea, lemon oil, bergamont oil, nutmeg oil, lime oil, tea tree oil, rose oil, thyme oil, black current oil, polysorbate 60 (sugar emulsifier), fragrance, glucose oxidase & lactoperoxidase.

Monday, June 04, 2007

Healing treatment for Eczema with Acne

Yes I know first hand how much eczema on the face sucks.

So here is something I did and I finally have a face that has no acne or eczema and a much happier scalp.

First of: Never use anything drying on the face. I use Pears Glycerin soap or Charcoal & Clay soap from and a cool washcloth.

Second: Always moisturize DIRECTLY after rinsing the suds of your face. I use Shea Butter, Almond oil, or Aveeno Naturals.

Third: Always use a gentle 2.5% Benzoyl Peroxide lotion on existing and in acne prone places. ONLY once a day!!! I cannot stress this enough. Too many applications can exacerbate acne AND eczema.

Final: Drink lots of water. and Watch what you use on your HEAD. Shampoo, Hair color, Sprays,gels,mousses, can all cause your scalp and face to flare up. I have found Chagrin Valley Shampoo bars or Hesh Ayumix Shikakai Shampoo bars to be the best for me.

Good luck and don't scratch it!

Henna Recipe-Easy go rinse

So I have thick course hair and have had a dicken of a time getting the Henna mix the right consistancy.

So I came up with a recipe last night that seems to work really well.

You will need:

Amla oil OR 3 tablespoons AMLA powder with 1 tablespoon coconut oil/3 tablespoons coconut milk
2 cups hot liquid:
RED: Use Sandalwood, Paprika, or Cranberry Juice
BROWN: Use Tea, Coffee, or Black Walnut powder
1 heaping cup henna powder
1 drop patchouli, lavendar, cedar,or tea tree essential oil
mix in a glass or ceramic bowl
Use whatever is easiest to clean to stir it.

Cover with plastic wrap and let sit 6-8 hours.

Consistancy should be about "pudding" apply to dampened hair, leave on 3-8 hours.

Rinse out using conditioner, then shampoo and condition again.

Wait 3 days and before washing hair again.

Monday, May 07, 2007

Interview With Khadija From Henna Sooq Online

I asked Khadija from Henna Sooq to answer some questions about henna. I use this wonder powder for my hair, and nails. It gives a bright cherry red colour and conditions the hair and scalp.

I highly recommend trying it!

1a: I've heard of Rajathani, Jamila, Prabda, and Kimia henna. Are these the four most cultivated and easily available henna powders?
I would have to say that Rajasthani and Jamila are very popular. I don't believe they are the most cultivated but I am not 100% positive. Right now on the market Yemeni and Moroccan are very popular but harder to get reliable and trustworthy suppliers.

1. I have heard there are henna powders for hair and for skin, which are best for someone who wants to dye their hair?
Both are good. The important thing is to ask your supplier what there level of body art quality they carry and how fresh are the crops of henna for hair or body art. The main difference should only be the sift of the henna powders. In my opinion though, I feel that henna for hair is fine for dyeing your hair as long as it is the freshest crop for best color.

2. Our mutual friend Nightshade from LHC and I have done strand testing on some combinations of henna and other herbs. Of the herbs for red hair which do you consider the best?
I would have to say hibiscus works very well along with henna. I find that henna is the best herb for red hair when used alone.

2b. Continuing on that vein, which are the best for more brown shades?

For more brown shades, I would definetely say the addition of amla powder and indigo to your henna blend.

2c. Can you explain briefly the difference between Cassia Obovata and Henna?

Both are natural plants and each are very similar in what it does for hair. You will get all he benefits of henna using cassia obovata but it won't color your hair red tones. With henna you will be dyeing your hair reddish tones.

3. As a vegan (and having many vegan/vegetarian readers) the absence of animal testing and animal ingredients are important. Its true that the best Henna Mixtures are simple and contain no animal ingredients?
Yes they absolutely contain no animal ingredients.

3a. I've read about Black Henna (PPD) being dangerous what is it?
PPD is a chemical that is added to henna and in which we then call Black Henna. It stains the skin black and PPD is usually found in hair dyes, and is not safe for skin application.

5. You say on your website about Henna kits for pregnancy and henna for weddings, why do you make kits for those events?

I believe that lavender essential oil is the safest to use on pregnant women and children. It is mild and has the rarest chance of skin reaction. I prefer to be as safe as possible. For weddings I like to use it becaue the scent is so relaxing. I make those kits available to the public so they can be safe when using henna on themselves.

6. You warn against black henna or PPD. What do you reccomend if people want to dye their hair black or brown naturally?
I would recommend that they use henna powder and indigo in a one-step process or two-step process.

7. Besides Hair and Skin dye, how else have you heard henna being used?
It has been known that henna has been used to dye nails, to cure ringworm, cool burns, get rid of dandruff, and to get rid of nail fungus.

8. Other than being an artist who personally uses henna, what other reason did you have to open up Hena Sooq and start selling henna?

I have always loved henna and its uses. I am a stay at home mom, and I have always been interested in doing something that I enjoy for myself. Henna opened the door up to this possibility for me. Never have I found a more satisfying business. I especially lvoe the educational aspect of it. Teaching and helping others be more conscience of natural herbs, beautification, and care really inspires me.

9. Besides Henna I see you sell AMLA oil (Indian gooseberry oil) and Ghassoul Clay. What are these and how are they used?
Amla hair oil is used as a moisturizer for the hair either placed in your henna paste or use afterwards to oil your hair.
Ghassoul clay is from morocco and has been used by the women for centuries especially in the hammam (public bath, like a moroccan spa). It comes from the mineral-rich Atlas Mountains of Morocco and is used on hair and especially for the face and body as a scrub and cleanser. It leaves your skin feeling extremely soft.

10. Why do some store bought rajathani henna powders say to mix them in a metal bowl, and others to use plastic? Does it change the henna color?

In my personal experience, neither changes the color of the henna better then the other. I don't like to recommend using plastic bowls, because the paste gets absorbed into the bowl and stain it, and this residue will be left for everytime you use it for henna.

11. Anything else henna related to say?
What I can say about henna, is that it brings people together, especially in our most precious and intimate moments. It's an experience in itself, and an endless learning experience.

To buy henna people can shop !

Friday, April 20, 2007

Henna History from the vegan bunny hugger

Henna History from the vegan bunny hugger

So first off I met Khadija of Henna Sooq online at the Long Hair Community.

It was in this forum that I began seeing many mentions about henna. As a vegan, environmentalist and Buddhist I was attracted to the cultural, historical and medicinal aspects of henna.

Henna also known as (Lawsonia inermis, syn. L. alba) is a flowering plant, the sole species in the genus Lawsonia in the family Lythraceae.

Its uses have included being a dye for hair, skin and fingernails, a dye and preservative for leather and cloth, and medicinally as an anti-fungal.

The two most predominant uses of henna are skin and hair dye. Traditionally Henna is most commonly used to adorn the body with artistic designs for special events such as a wedding or other significant occasion. However with the popularization of “temporary tattoos, and body art” many people are beginning to utilize henna for adornment for any occasion.

Medicinally henna has a few more uses. The henna flowers can be crushed in oil for their scent; a combination of dark chocolate, roses and tobacco. This oil has antifungal and antibacterial properties similar to melaleuca (tea tree) oil. Further it was said that henna oil or powder and vinegar or other acidic liquid (lime or lemon juice) applied to the forehead was an effective headache reliever. Henna is also used as an ornamental shrub in North America and the United Kingdom.

Henna is cultivated in the tropical savannah and tropical arid zone from Africa to the western Pacific. Henna is indigenous to North Africa, Saudi Arabia, the Middle East and South.

Henna powders produced in temperatures between 35°C and 45°C have the highest dye content. Thus geographically speaking Rajathani and Jamila Henna are the two henna powders associated with the highest dye rate.

Henna does not thrive where minimum temperatures are below 11°C and temperatures below 5°C will kill the henna plant. So it is usually imported to places such as the UK or the North America or grown in greenhouses.

Henna is cultivated as a commercial crop in Egypt, Somalia, Sudan, Morocco, Iran, United Arab Emirates, Yemen, Niger, and Pakistan. Nigeria exports most of its henna to Algeria, and Yemen. India is the biggest producer of henna (Rajathani and Jamila).

India, Pakistan, the Yemen, Morocco, Egypt, Iran and the Sudan are the main growers and exporters of henna. Large quantities of henna are produced at home for the local market, and much smaller quantities sold on the international market.

Some unreputable companies, that are usually not mandated by the FDA sell things called “neutral and black henna” these are false powders that have no relation to henna at all. There are no such plants as black henna or neutral henna.

There are products sold as such may be indigo or cassia obovata which are used to produce a Blue/Black or Cassia Obovata can be used to condition the hair but will not color the hair and is not related to the henna plant.

Others may contain unlisted dyes and chemicals such as Para-phenylenediamine (PPD). PPD is a black dye which is illegal and can cause severe skin eruptions, lesions, and burns.

Henna is usually labeled by where it is grown. There are major types of henna such as Jamila, Yemeni, Moroccan and Rajasthani. Most popular for hair use seem to be Jamila, Yemeni, Morroccan and Rajathani. The difference according to Henna Sooq is Dye Release time and redness/brownish tint of stain. Jamila has a longer dye release (sometimes taking 8-10 hours to release) and shows a more brown stain. Where as Rajathani henna has a quicker dye release and produces more of a black cherry stain.

In tropical savannah and tropical arid zones where henna is grown , the henna plant flowers during August and September as the monsoons subside. The highest dye releases come from these summer crops. The high heat and sudden rainfall make for a very potent Henna dye.

Once dry Henna appears to have a short shelf life as do many dried herbs or spices. Henna powder becomes stale and loses dye content in about three months unless it is packaged in airtight packaging such as a foil/vacuum sealed wrapper. It is recommended that prepackaged henna be stored in an air tight foil container in the freezer.

When dried henna leaves are powdered, the dye potency decreases in contact with air or light. This is why henna bought in bulk that comes in clear jars (such as the health food stores) or Henna kept in loose, porous packaging for more than three months makes pale orange stains, sometimes little or no stain at all.

One can test henna for dye release by making a small batch and watching for red tinge to appear on the edge of the sample. Once henna has lost its potency it is not useless, it still has conditioning effects and can be used to strengthen and cause a slight straightening of hair shaft.

Henna can be used in conjunction with other herbs and plants to provide different “effects” to the hair.

Some additives include:

Chamomile: for golden highlights

Cassia Obovata: For Golden highlights and extra conditioning, also known as neutral henna)

Hibiscus Petals: To impart Red/Purple tones

Red Zinger Tea: To impart Red tones

Red Sandalwood: To promote red tones

Blueberry Tea/Juice: To promote Burgundy/Purple Tones

Blackberry Tea/Juice: Promote deep burgundy/red tones

Cranberry Tea/Juice: Promote Red/Burgundy Tones

Black Tea: To promote Brown tones

Coffee: To promote brown tones

Black Walnut: To Impart Brown tones

Powdered Cloves: To impart brown tones

Indigo Powder: To promote Dark Brown or Black Tones (Note: this is recommended as a separate process)

My personal favorite henna recipe is as follows and causes my henna to be bright red almost purple in direct light:
150 grams Henna (I prefer Rajasthani because of super quick dye release)
50 grams Powdered AMLA (Indian Gooseberry Fruit, Embelica Officinalis )
2 Tablespoon Coconut Milk
1.5 cups boiled water with 1/2 cup Hibiscus petals
2 tablespoons red sandalwood
Mix together and let sit in warm oven for 1 hour or until you see dye release.
Apply to towel dried hair and wrap in saran wrap. Cover it with a hat and sit for at least 2 hour.

Indian Gooseberry, Emblic myrobalan, Amla, Amalaki Information

Herb Information

Name: Indian Gooseberry

Biological Name: Emblica officinalis

Euphorbiaceae family

Other Names:
Indian Gooseberry, Emblic myrobalan, Amla, Amalaki;

Parts Used: Fresh Fruit, Dried fruit, the nut or seed, leaves, root, bark and flowers. Ripe fruits used generally fresh, dry also used.

The bark of Amla is gray in color and peals in irregular patches. Its feathery leaves, which smell like lemon, are of linear oblong shape and size 10 to 12 mm length and 3 to 6 mm width. Its flowers are monoecioius having greenish yellow color. They grow in auxiliary clusters and start appearing in the beginning of spring season.

Amla fruit, depressed globose with six vertical furrows, start developing by the middle of spring and the fruit ripen towards beginning of autumn. The color of the fruit is pale yellow.

Amla has been regarded as a sacred tree in India. The tree was worshipped as Mother Earth and is believed to nurture humankind because the fruits are very nourishing. The leaves, fruit and flowers are used in worship in India. In Himachal Pradesh the tree is worshipped in Kartik as propitious and chaste.

Active Ingredients:
The active ingredient that has significant pharma-cological action in amla is designated by Indian scientists as 'phyllemblin'. The other ingredients present are gallic acid, tannins, pectin, and ascorbic acid (Vitamin C).
It is a tonic, has a haematinic and lipalytic function. It is one of the strongest rejuvenatives in Indian pharmacopoeia. It contains 30 times the amount of Vitamin C found in oranges.

Medicinal Applications:
Fresh fruit is refrigerant, diuretic and laxative. Green fruit is exceedingly acid. Fruit is also carminative and stomachic. Dried fruit is sour and astringent. Flowers are cooling and aperient. Bark is astringent. It is one of the highest natural source of Vitamin C (3,000 mg per fruit)

Dosage and Uses:
Amla is used in the following forms: Decoction and Infusion of leaves and seeds; liquor, essential oil; confection; powder; paste and pickles. An astringent extract equal to catechu is prepared from the root by decoction and evaporation.

As a vermifuge: AKA Gross Gunk on the skin and scalp Juice of the fruit with honey is used.

For scabies or itch Apply the seed burnt, powdered and mixed in oil for scabies or itch.

Caution: May cause acute diarrhea. No other information is available.

Benefits of Emblica officinalis

Enhances production of Red Blood Cells. Strengthens teeth, hair and nails.

Very Powerful anti-inflammatory herb. Useful on hemorrhoids mixed with honey or witch hazel.

Prevents premature greying of hair and makes them strong and free from dandruff.

Conditions for which Indian Gooseberry is Useful For:
hair (premature gray/balding) hemorrhoids
painful urination
urinary problems

AMLA,Embelica Officinalis, Amlaki,Indian Gooseberry

A really interesting article about AMLA and other ayuvedic things.


Wednesday, April 18, 2007

AMLA Oil- The wonder fruit

AMLA also called Indian Gooseberry or Embelica Officianlis is a citris type inedible fruit from the arid parts of Yemen, Arabia, Morrocco, and India. Its fruits are used in oils and in powders.

The dried fruit is a detergent and is used as a shampoo.

Amla oil is prepared from dried Amla berries which have been soaked in coconut oil for several days in order to extract the oil soluble vitamins from the fruit.

The filtered and purified oil is commonly called Amla oil. Because the oil blend is coconut and AMLA berries it is a very good conditioner and consequently one of the worlds oldest!

Amla oil has a long history of use as an aid for improving the health of hair and scalp. In fact, it is one of the world's oldest, natural hair conditioners.

Medicinal Amla Fruit is rich in Vitamin C and Pectin (Which means when used with Henna to make a gel you can omit pectin!) The fruit, because of its high acidity helps to exfoliate and clarify the scalp.

Customarily, a small amount of Amla oil is applied to the hair after washing. This not only bring forth a rich, natural shine and soft texture, but also helps rejuvenate hair that is dull and damaged. It has an herbal almost Piney smell that is green, refreshing and fades to be barely noticable. It it easily absorbed into the scalp and is an excellent product to use for rejuvinating scalp massages or to tame fly-aways.

I've been using this oil on my fiance and mines hair for they last few weeks and my SO has noticed his hair seems to be getting thicker. Also it appears that the act of massage and time we spend together during this activity has made us closer.

Prices run between 2.99-9.99 a bottle depending on supplier. You can purchase it online at or visit a local Indian Market and ask for AMLA oil.

The powder is also inexspensive and can be mixed with warm water, applied to the scalp and hair and rinsed out. This will leave the scalp exfoliated and the hair shaft clarified. A box of powder can run from 1.99 to upwards of 9.99 a pound.

This product has been used for centuries and has the added benefit of being vegan and biodegradible. Also the plant itself is known for its ability to treat wastewater zones and clarify the soil.

The powder can also be applied to the face for an gentle exfoliating mask.

The AMLA plant is truly one of the power houses on the Ayurvedic Medicinal Plants.

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Knitting is Addiction-Calorimetry for Dummies

Here is what I did for a small fauxlemitry (calorimetry) for my friends chihuahua (can we say too much time on our hands...) Obviously this is gauged to be LARGER but I used the same technique.

I used Caron Simply Soft Tweed in Black and used a double strand. It used one ball/skein of yarn.

Cast on even number of stitches (I did 96 for my small head)

knit row one
purl one entire row to last 2 stitches, place marker
Turn the piece (leaving the 2 stitches on the other needle unknitted)
knit until you reach the last two stitches on the other side, STOP, placce marker, turn work
purl until you reach your marker, remove marker slip one stitch, KNIT three, place marker
Knit until you reach marker on the other side,remove marker, slip ONE stitch, PURL three stitches, place marker
PURL to other side.
Repeat this pattern until you have 22 stitches outside each marker
(it was like 13 rows for me, but it may vary for you, just make sure there are an even amount of stitches on the outside of both markers)
Depending if you finished on a knit or a purl you continue to the marker, remove it, knit/purl 4 stitches, replace marker, knit/purl to other marker, remove it, knit/purl 4 stitches, replace marker

Keep doing this until you have 2 stitches left on either side of each marker.
Slip oe stitch (so one remains) and work to other marker, slip stitch again and work to final marker, then work last two stitches.

work one last row by binding off the stitches.

Sounds complicated but it really isn't. Once you master this try making one with ribbing!


Monday, January 22, 2007

Henna day

SO I mixed up my batch of Henna. I got the same Dark brown Henna from my local Indian Grocery, mixed in 2 oz of AMLA powder, squirted in Lime juice, added gelatin, Lavendar and patchouli and mixed with Hot Coffee and then let sit on a heating pad for 45 minutes.

I applied the goop to my hair and took a three hour nap. Woke up, rinsed it out using kiwi lime squeeze conditioner and then let it air dry.

I have been having a terribly itchy scalp lately and so yesterday I made a brown sugar and conditioner scrub and applied it liberally to my scalp.

Then rinsed my hair well and braided it damp and fell asleep.

Woke this morning with soft (even a little greasy) hair. Not sure as to why but I may have to do a vinegar rinse tonight. I don't usually wash my hair for 5 days after henna but this time I may have added more AMLA than neccesary and thus dried my scalp.

I made sure that I had not washed my hair for 5 days previous to applying the henna so that should have given me enough scalp protecting oils.

Maybe I will perform a coconut/lime soak...

I'll have to ask my friend Kiya for the recipe. I am way bummed LHC is offline along with the Beauty Bottle! I hope the hackers didn't get to it again.

Well. Peace and good hair days!


Thursday, January 11, 2007

Quaternium/Simethicone-Dimethicone FREE Conditioners


Most mainstream and many “natural” conditioners rely on quaternary compounds to produce thicker, tangle-free silky hair. These compounds - benzalkonium chloride, cetrimonium bromide, quaternium 15, quaternium 18 - can be irritating to eyes and skin. Other ingredients to avoid: carcinogenic coal tar colours (FC&C), propylene glycol, cinnamate sunscreens, and polysorbate 80 that may be contaminated with 1,4-dioxane, a carcinogen.

Best Natural

Anointment - Herbal Hair Rinses (a Halifax company. Sold at P’Lovers.)
Botanical Therapeutic - Conditioner
Aubrey Organics - Island Naturals Conditioner; Blue Green Algae Cream Rinse; Blue Green Algae Hair Rescue Conditioning Mask; GPB Hair Conditioner; Green Tea Herbal Cream Rinse; Rosemary and Sage Hair and Scalp Rinse.
Curelle- Treslite Conditioner, Riche Conditioner (both unscented)
Curelle - Build-up Remover
Druide- Ecological Conditioner
Nature’s Blends - organic conditioner
Nature Clean - Organic Conditioner
Weleda - Aloe Phyto Conditioner; Calendula Phyto Conditioner; Chamomile Phyto Conditioner; Chestnut Phyto Conditioner; Henna Phyto Conditioner; Lemon Balm Phyto Conditioner; Rosemary Phyto Conditioner

Best Commercial Conditioners:
Hesh Herbal AMLA Powder
Jason Organics
White Rain
Revlon Flex


Atlantic Healing Hemp Delicious Apple Conditioner, Seawinds Conditioner
Beauty Without Cruelty
Desert Essence - Jojoba Conditioner
Earth Science - Pure Essentials
Earth Science Fragrance Free Conditioner
Healthy Times
Herbal Glow
Infinity - Rosemary or Chamomile Conditioning Rinse
Magick Botanicals - Oil Free Conditioner, Conditioner for Thinning Hair (both fragrance free)
Nature’s Gate

Ragdoll Ani

I read this after seeing a picture that looked exactly like Ani my girl kitty. We call her the poofy, not-so-smart killer whale beached on the floor because of her tendency to go limp.

But I was speechless when I read this it was like they were describing her:

"If you want a large cat which is non-aggressive, loves to be with people, and is very placid, and often becomes enamoured with inanimate objects, then the rag doll is the cat for you.

Ragdolls are large, heavy cats, with broad chests and large hindquarters. They are slow-maturing, and do not reach full maturity until approximately three years of age. Females are smaller than males, weighing about 10-15 pounds on average. Males weigh an average of 12-20 pounds as adults, although some may grow to be larger.

Their medium-long coats and bushy tails have a soft texture that feels like rabbit fur. In general, Ragdolls have longer fur around the neck (a "ruff") and on the back of the hindquarters (sometimes referred to as "britches"). The fur does not tend to mat, and is easily combed. It does, however, require occasional grooming.

Ragdolls (as their name implies) are extremely "laid-back," docile, non-aggressive cats. They tend to relax when held. They are said to possess a non-fighting instinct, which means that if attacked, they do not defend themselves. They are very "people" oriented and love to be around others, which often finds them greeting guests and/or following their owners around in a fashion similar to a puppy. They are often quite an attraction in a show ring because of their docile dispositions and acceptance of the judge placing them on their backs, holding them like a baby, etc.

In general, Ragdolls are not extremely vocal, but they do voice their opinions concerning certain things (such as at mealtime!). Ragdolls are generally placid cats, but they do love to play with all types of toys and like to be involved in whatever "action" is going on."

Ragdolls are pointed cats. Like other pointed breeds such as the Himalayan and Siamese, Ragdoll kittens are born all white and slowly develop color. The color continues to deepen as the cat ages."

Monday, January 08, 2007

Vegan Deep Conditioning for ravaged hair

AMLA Deep Conditioning Treatment Mask:
1 cup White Rain Citrus Energizing Conditioner (cone/quat free)
1/2 cup AMLA powder (available at from nature with love or any Indian grocery)
3 TBSP aloe gel

Tropical Island Deep Conditioning mask:
1 avocado
Coconut milk (enough to make a paste)

Peel and pit avocado. Mash avocado and slowly add coconut milk until smooth and the consistency of hair conditioner. Work through ends of hair towards the roots.
Rinse after 15 minutes and shampoo.

Jojoba Hope Oil Treatment:
2 teaspoons jojoba oil
1 teaspoon soybean oil (I find Olive oil works well for course and coconut for dry)

Combine ingredients then warm gently on low heat. Test temperature on inside of forearm. Massage mixture into hair.Wrap hair in a hot towel or cover with shower cap or plastic wrap for 15 minutes. Shampoo & rinse out. Reciped may be doubled for very long hair.

Keen's FAVORITE Dry scalp remedy!:

Ginger Treatment

Ginger root (Freshly grated, about 2 inches)
1 teaspoon sesame oil
1 teaspoon lemon juice

Squeeze ginger root through press to obtain one tablespoon of juice. Mix all ingredients. Apply to scalp and let dry before shampooing. Repeat three times a week. This not only smells divine but helps dry hair in the winter not to become itchy!

quaternium-15 and other Hair hazards

I can't believe that I actually put this stuff in my conditioner! THis is gross gross gross.

This stuff can cause contact dermatitis in persons who have sensitive skin. I found out the hard way that my conditioner has quaternium-15.
These are quaternium-15, hydantoin, AND Diazolidinyl urea. All which would explain WHY my scalp is an itchy mess! Today when I go to the Grocery store I am going to get some natural conditiner without "quats", "cones" or other "urea" or formeldahyde substances!

Formaldehyde-releasing preservatives to avoid:
  • Imidazolidinyl urea (Germall®)
  • Diazolidinyl urea (Germall II®)
  • DMDM hydantoin (Glydant®)
  • Bromonitropropane diol (Bronopol™)
  • Tris (hydroxymethyl) nitromethane (Tris Nitro®)
Products containing quaternium-15
Cosmetics Self-hygiene/pharmaceutical products Commercial/industrial products
  • Foundations, powders, concealers
  • Eye makeup (liners, shadows, mascara)
  • Facial makeup (blushes)
  • Bronzes
  • Makeup removers
  • Adhesives
  • Floor wax and polish
  • Paper and paperboard
  • Water-based inks
  • Latex paints
  • Industrial cutting fluid
  • Laundry starch
  • Joint cement
  • Printing pastes

Friday, January 05, 2007

Spaying and Neutering is the ultimate Kindness

What do "spay" and "neuter" really mean?

Female dogs and cats are spayed by removing their reproductive organs, and male dogs and cats are neutered by removing their testicles. In both cases the operation is performed while the pet is under anesthesia. Depending on your pet's age, size, and health, he or she will stay at your veterinarian's office for a few hours or a few days. Depending upon the procedure, your pet may need stitches removed after a few days. Your veterinarian can fully explain spay and neuter procedures to you and discuss with you the best age at which to sterilize your pet.

Spaying or Neutering Is Good for Your Pet

  • Spaying and neutering helps dogs and cats live longer, healthier lives.
  • Spaying and neutering can eliminate or reduce the incidence of a number of health problems that can be very difficult or expensive to treat.
  • Spaying eliminates the possibility of uterine or ovarian cancer and greatly reduces the incidence of breast cancer, particularly when your pet is spayed before her first estrous cycle.
  • Neutering eliminates testicular cancer and decreases the incidence of prostate disease.

Spaying or Neutering Is Good for You

  • Spaying and neutering makes pets better, more affectionate companions.
  • Neutering cats makes them less likely to spray and mark territory.
  • Spaying a dog or cat eliminates her heat cycle. Estrus lasts an average of six to 12 days, often twice a year, in dogs and an average of six to seven days, three or more times a year, in cats. Females in heat can cry incessantly, show nervous behavior, and attract unwanted male animals.
  • Unsterilized animals often exhibit more behavior and temperament problems than do those who have been spayed or neutered.
  • Spaying and neutering can make pets less likely to bite.
  • Neutering makes pets less likely to roam the neighborhood, run away, or get into fights.

Spaying and Neutering Are Good for the Community

  • Communities spend millions of dollars to control unwanted animals.
  • Irresponsible breeding contributes to the problem of dog bites and attacks.
  • Animal shelters are overburdened with surplus animals.
  • Stray pets and homeless animals get into trash containers, defecate in public areas or on private lawns, and frighten or anger people who have no understanding of their misery or needs.
  • Some stray animals also scare away or kill birds and wildlife.

Why the "rogue" writings

Someone asked me why I chose the name "Rogue Writer" Actually its because like most things in my life I seem to be pretty good at things quickly but I excel in nothing.

I am an awesome fake. I take on challenges, am lucky and then quit.

I learned to bike, entered a mountain bike challenge, one 2nd place and retired.

I learned Karate, entered a weapons tournament, won 1st place and retired.

I painted for a class, was chosen as a 1st place winner nationally, gave the painting to my mother and didn't paint anymore.

I learned to fence, beat my instructor at a dual one day, gave my foil away and never fenced again...

Honestly it isn't bragging because it is really quite depressing. It seems every craft I tried, every game I played it was one extreme or another. I either sucked horribly at it or was terribly good at it and became disenchanted.

Thus far I have done everything from:

Working with wolves
Sleeping in a monestary
Traveling to Korea over a long weekend
Bonding with elephants
Touched thousand year old art objects
Met world famous writers
Had lunch with Nobel Peace reciepients
Learned to throw axes
Fenced against Kings
Ate dinner with Opera Prima Donas
Met famous poets
Taught myself to hook rugs
Walked with presidents
Shared Jokes with governers
Saved Feral Kittens who would come to no one else
Saved Dogs and sat with them when they died
Was Sponsored by Mountain Bike Company to race
Taught myself to knit
Was sponsered by a hair care team to perform in Karate Tournament
Was the only female in an all male volunteer fire department
Was the first female in a small professional fire dept
Performed a 20 second keg stand unassisted
Was the youngest female in a yet another fire dept
Am one of the oldest persons sufferinfg from Syringomyelia to still be walking without assistance and not taking Opiates for pain.
Was the first Bi-Racial person adopted by three Native American Tribes
Learned to shop lift
Taught myself to write a grant
Learned German, Swahili, and Afrikaans by myself after struggling to learn Spanish
Taught myself to crochet
Became a all star rugby player
Had an article published in the newspaper
Hand another published in a few magazines
Had pictures published in both periodicals
Was in the news on hundreds of occasions
Spoke at lectures, conferences, and rallies accross the world.
Met a kitten who could give a rats ass about any of the above shit. . .
Thats right. Spam didn't give a shit. She could care less about the above and yet to be discovered talents. She cared about Food, warmth, water and her place in a pack. She didn't trust anyone, she was mean, aggressive and stubborn. Instead of giving her away or putting her to sleep she became my newest friend.
Spam taught me that above all else that I tried and enjoyed the one thing that filled me and gave me a sense of purpose was my ability to "get through" to animals. Somehow their actions made complete sense to me and I could understand even the strangest of behaviours.
So now Spam is my friend. I am not her owner and she is not my cat. She shares space with me and each morning we commune so that I can scratch her ears and look into her golden eyes and she can learn to accept affection.

I am working on enhancing my photographic memory, because I keep seeing things when I pet Spam and other animals. don't know why but I want to be able to remember them. I am trying think of ways to emphasize to people the importance of being vegan and taking care of the earth and its creatures. I think that the reason I was good at all these things was to prepare me for this.

It is the hardest thing I have even done. Being Vegan and Working to Save animals. It doesn't come naturally because too many other people don't care, or are offensive just because of my diet choices. It helps that I can relate to them on other levels. But the point of this article is this. I am a rogue because I never know what I am going to have to do. I have to be able to be at least passable at things in order to help those without voices. The work involved including meditation, reading, time, patience, and kindness are skilled that cannot be stolen through luck or touch.

This is why I am called the Rogue. And I write so that if my photographic memory fails me, I have something else to jog my mind.

Vegan Hair and Skin Tips from India

Shinier Hair:
Half an hour before washing your hair, rub coconut milk onto your scalp. This will also make your hair shinier.

Natural Hair Shine Booster:
At night before going to sleep, give your hair a hundred strokes with a brush. This increases the blood circulation in the scalp and promotes hair growth. However brush your hair GENTLY!

Olive Oil the natural Hot Oil Treatment:
Heat olive oil and massage into hair and then take steam. By doing this regularly you will get rid of split-ends.

Coconut the magic fruit:
Using coconut oil in sauteed veggies, stirred into rice, or even to pop popcorn only 2 tablespoons a week helps the scalp and the skin to glow and be clear of blemishes and grime.

Pimple Fighter:
This is a recipe I happened to find by accident. I saw lemon peel powder when buying my henna and amla and bought some. I found out adding it to my conditioner only washes helped to clarify my scalp. I then used it with glycerin and rosewater on my face which was breaking out as a mask and it cleared up a nasty blemish in a few days! This stuff is amazing but fair warning do NOT get this in your eyes, holy sting.
Oh FYI Key Lime Juice works really well and smells divine but be sure to be aware that it can be pricey for the authentic thing.

Potatoes: Who knew they were so versatile?
To remove dark circles around your eyes, apply the juice of potatoe everyday. Also for hemerhiods that are painful a potato poutice or rounded sliver applied to the affected area helps to stop bleeding and heal the tear. In fact potatos are natural vasoconstrictors, and its a lot less embarressing to buy a pound of potatoes vs. "hemorhoid ointment"