btrzp / posted on 5 July 2014

Blue Eyed Leopard Goes Green

After some health set backs in the last two years I have been slowly educating myself in a healthier, greener lifestyle. Much to the chagrin of my family who seems to think I am turning into a hypochondriac or something equally annoying…

But who cares, they’ll get around to it!

I am slowly starting to, as much as my current limited budget allows me to, change all my products into more natural, organic ones that will allow me to get rid of all the chemicals I have always been exposed to.

These last five months or so I had been using a sulfate free shampoo:  KeraCare Hydrating Detangling Shampoo.

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It worked great. In fact it helped me get rid of the itchy scalp problem I had when using the usual commercial shampoos. In fact, when I went to the hairdresser to get my haircut and they washed my head with their shampoo my scalp started to itch like crazy that very night. It is a very moisturizing shampoo, and although it doesn’t lather like the shampoo you might be used to, it does it’s cleaning job just as well, if not better. A little goes a long way and, for someone who has curly long hair that is a pain to detangle, this shampoo made it way easier. Yet, once I actually had the bottle and read the ingredients I found something in the ingredients which I hadn’t been able to read online: Disodium Laureth Sulfosuccinate. What is it? Well, a variation of the very thing I was trying to avoid. Although it is said to have larger molecules than Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS) that cannot penetrate the skin, and some say it is considered suitable for more sensitive skin types. Although it is not a sulfate like its sister chemical SLS, this and the reviews I found of people who were sensitive even to this considered gentler foaming agent, was enough to put me off this shampoo.

On this note, upon countless hours on the internet, I have concocted my own shampoo recipe in order to give my little curls a better chance at a healthier look.

This was adapted from a pH balanced shampoo recipe I found on this blog: http://www.thankyourbody.com/ph-balanced-shampoo-recipe/

Three main ingredients are: coconut milk, avocado pit and Aloe Vera gel. 

Since I couldn’t find organic coconuts, I had to make due with organic unsweetened shredded coconut. I put about 2 cups of coconut shreds and 2 1/2 cups of hot water into a cup and mixed the ingredients for a minute or so with a hand blender. Then I put it through a strainer to separate the milk from the coconut. I got 1 1/2 cups of milk. (If you don’t want anything to go to waste you can dry the coconut that is left on the strainer and later make coconut flour or coconut butter with them). 

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I collected some Aloe Vera and extracted the gel myself straight from the leaf. I have to say I didn’t expect it to be so gooey but I wanted the properties of aloe and I didn’t have the time to wait for a super expensive order when I could get it natural and straight from the plant. From the leaves that I could cut without harming the plants it gave me about a cup or so of gel.

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The avocado pits I decided to add because of its health benefits and since avocado flesh is used in moisturizing treatments I figured the pit should share in some of those properties. I grated 3 pits, which turned into a beautiful orange-like color as soon as they came into contact with air.

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After boiling 6 cups of water I then added the grated pits letting it boil for about 5 minutes or so before turning the heat down to a simmer. Let it simmer for 45 minutes or an hour and stir it every once in a while as it starts to thicken. Afterwards pour it through a cheese cloth (or something similar) to get the pulp out. I got about 250 ml out of it.

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Once all the ingredients have cooled down mix them together with a hand blender until there is a homogeneous mix. In my opinion, it had a beautiful color, and just handling each of the ingredients I could feel the softness on my skin.

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Since there are no chemical preservatives I followed the advice of the recipe of pH balanced shampoo and poured the mixture onto ice cube trays. (Since I had only one, I improvised and used egg holders as well). I put them in the fridge until frozen and then transferred them into a plastic Ziploc bag. The whole mixture filled two egg holders and the ice cube tray (which is obviously smaller in cube size) twice.

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There was a bit of it left in a jar that I saved for my shower. I can’t obviously make a lot of inferences from a one time use. But I have to say that although it was a bit liquid - I should have added more aloe, and I would think that more would make it less liquid in consistency but honestly it wasn’t really a problem for me - it felt amazing on my head. Obviously it isn’t going to foam but for someone with frizzy and dry hair I felt it immediately work on my curls and I didn’t even need conditioner to be able to detangle my knots. I let it work for five minutes or so, just to make sure that the ingredients had a bit more time to sink into my scalp, but I reckon if you’re in a hurry and don’t have time to wait, there shouldn’t be a problem.

Now every time I know I am going to wash my head all I have to do is take a cube out and put it in the fridge overnight and use it in the shower. Any leftovers I would keep in the fridge for the next time you want to wash your head.

As for smell, I got compliments on how good my hair smelled and even after a full day, it still smells wonderful.


TAGS: homemade shampoo natural living health organic coconut milk aloe vera avocado pit gel review smell detangle curly hair DIY

btrzp / posted on 2 July 2014

Forget Me Nots

I can’t make myself forget this. I wish I could, but I can’t and that’s the shittiest part of it all.

I am fucking great at forgetting, I do it every day. I don’t know why I can’t just press repeat and do what I have been doing for years just as effortlessly now.

It works like this: (As far as I know) You start doing it to the little things that you don’t want taking up space in your head or clogging up your negativity filter in your life and your body. Then with practice you move on to the big things, whilst sometimes telling yourself, that they are still the little things. And then when you notice what you are actually doing for - which is how you tell it back to yourself - but mostly to yourself, this once healthy habit has just become a daily crutch that you can’t even tell whether or not is there anymore.

You forget things, on a daily basis. It becomes part of your routine, stealing your own life away. So much so, that even when you do try to, you can’t remember it. You say you do, you nod your head in agreement but for the most part, your mind has just become too good at it.

Whether this is the only way for some of us to survive life, or a fantasy scenario of denial that takes over you like poison once you open that door, I don’t know.

All I do know is that I can’t erase this. My mind can’t erase this. I have tried, God knows my subconscious has tried - and succeded for the most part - but some things are floating back up, escaping their prison, and haunting me as they probably should. The cracks are starting to show and they are eating me alive.

My head is full of noise and I want it to stop. If only I knew how. I don’t know how to have silence without losing myself in it, and I don’t know how to have noise without losing my mind for it. The fine line gets very blurry with me and I have walked far too many times on each extremity and fallen off the edge to give into it yet again, after so much fighting.

I don’t know…I’d just like the answers now…


TAGS: forget remember life hardship love relationships little things big things poison door write soul bleed blue eyed leopard strength noise silence edge polar

btrzp / posted on 28 June 2014

The level of heartbreak is phenomenal. Mads did a wonderful job of portraying just how much Will Graham got through to Hannibal. How his curiosity and attraction were his biggest weakness. This wasn’t the self-absorbed and always composed Hannibal of the first season. These were acts of a heartbroken man who, in as much as he was capable of – and also much to his surprise – nurtured some form of love for Will. Something all the more evident by the special gift he had planned to give him after they’d fled together.

I loved how he gave Will a chance to come clean, an immunity card without further consequences to his betrayal. No one else got a second chance to survive Hannibal Lecter, but Will did, and he didn’t take it. This was the ultimate proof that all the consequences that would come of it, out of that truth, were something that Hannibal didn’t want. He didn’t want to part with any of it. As much of a little devil as this character is, Mads portrays him so beautifully honest that I couldn’t help but feel my heart was breaking too. And as he stood out in the pouring rain, having it wash over him, I too felt like he was trying to cleanse himself of the tragedy of it all, just like any of us common mortals have found ourselves trying to do.

It really was one of the greatest finales on television of recent years. Great writers, great director, great production and great cast. I hope season 3 blows us away! ♥


TAGS: Hannibal Series TV NBC 2014 Season 2 Finale Episode 13 Mizumono Hannibal Lecter Will Graham Jack Crawford Alana Bloom Freddie Lounds Abigail Hobbs Bryan Fuller Mads Mikkelsen Hugh Dancy Laurence Fishburne Caroline Dhavernas Lara Jean Chorostecki Kacey Rohl David Slade

btrzp / posted on 27 June 2014

"Knot in hand, and knot in head…"

There is still the biggest of knots sitting at the end of my gut.

I have no idea when it will be kind enough to leave me, or unknot itself, or just soften up its edges as to maybe make life a tiny bit more enjoyable. But it is still very much there. Reminding me of everything that happened this past year. The good, the bad, the not so enthusiastic and the downright disasters that populated the sum of events that have led me to today.

There are worst things in life, I am definitely sure of that fact. But it doesn’t diminish any of it. I wish it did somehow. I wish there was something that could take away the hurt, and sorrow, even if it meant taking away the good too. Am I that irrevocably mean to fervently wish away the bad even if it meant parting with the good?

I don’t like suffering. Mine I can take. It may and will most certainly drive me mad, but seeing myself cause harm rather than good on another human being paralyzes me.

So yes, I would erase it! No matter how much I am told that there are lessons to be learned, growth and new paths to be walked after moments like these, I would do it, in the blink of an eye.

As Machiavellian as it sounds, I think anyone can live better with themselves if they can recognize that their actions were undeniably their own, a consequence of some action-reaction law and not something that was born out of naïveté and entanglement of fates.

Maybe the side of me that is said to bring out the best of someone is merely a temporary enchantment. Maybe if you combine me and something else it will eventually spoil and begin to wither. If that is true, then Midas had nothing on me… 


TAGS: Knot Benito Cereno Idea Kind Leave Soften Edges Enjoy Life Reminders Year Good Bad Events Today Worst Hurt Sorrow Wish Suffering Madness Human Paralyze Erase Lessons Growth Paths Moments Machiavellian Actions

btrzp / posted on 22 June 2014

5 a.m. in the Jungle

Can you truly mend a broken heart?

Is a question that has always haunted me. Either as a social curiosity or as a personal fear.

I have never had my heart broken - that is until I fell in love for the first time.

My friends though, they always seemed to be constantly falling in and out of love. Putting their hearts back together as if it was some sort of involuntary reaction, an ordinary chore that had to be over and done with as quickly as possible.

But, with every new heartbreak and newfound love they had a little less. A little less to give, a little less immediate response to the impressionability of love, a little less of themselves for themselves.

Like when you try to glue something back together and even though the cracks match, they don’t quite fit. No matter how hard you try there is always the tiniest piece missing, the one you can never find again. And the dust that once held it in its place is left drifting on forever.

I never had my heart broken. I had a lot of trust broken over the years. I always thought that that would inevitably be the worst moments I could ever go through. I was wrong!

As I later discovered, getting your heart broken is not a rupture of feelings and memories, but rather of everything you are. Everything that you hold on to, every belief, everything you stand for,everything you defend, and know, and love, and protect…and trust.

Ever since he broke my heart, I tried to put it back together as best as I knew how. I tried to fight off my survival instincts and I tried to ignore some things I shouldn’t have ignored. I didn’t know how to love him any better with a broken heart than I had had with the best parts of it.

I think he expected an apology and heartfelt sorrow to be enough, but it wasn’t. Just because he had had an epifany didn’t mean that all was forgiven and forgotten.

And yet I kept making excuses for him. On why, despite all the love I felt from him I could never feel him one hundred per cent with me. Why there was always a glint in his eyes that showed me the darkness in him struggling to break out, the fight within himself to battle his wandering mind and his judgemental surroundings. Why he never truly let me in, when I was all but naked in every sense of the word.

He shut me out. He would show me glimpses of a bright future and then take it away just as quickly.

I held on for as long as I could. But when I felt the world closing in, my reality disappearing from me, the best parts of me forgot how to breathe and drowned. I let my survival instincts take the best of me and I let go. I shouldn’t have, I should have been stronger than that…

I have been running on a half mended heart for a year and it is still as hard as it was on that fateful day sometimes.

But now that I seem to have unfortunately returned the favour, I ask myself, can you truly mend a broken heart? Can you make yourself whole again, and love better?

I hope so. I truly, deeply, madly hope so.


TAGS: blue eyed leopard love couple heart broken trust personal a feelings mend truth fear let go friends questions doubts life struggles light darkness bel me joe relationship holding on memories beliefs

btrzp / posted on 3 June 2014

Walter Elbertson: “I know a lot about you, and I’ve learned a little more about you since yesterday. You can hurt me! Because I hate yesterday, I’ve never felt anything like it. I thought my insides had been taken out and I was shaking. To tell you the truth I thought…. I thought I lost you, and it hurt… And maybe I can hurt you too. Look, I know you’re uptight… I love you Lila, I really love you. You’re a PAIN IN THE ASS, but I love you! I got this pain and I figured, it’s time to go home but I love you and you are worth the pain. Anyway, I do love you, and I got that pain, and I need you, and that’s why I stopped the car!”

Walter Elbertson: “I know a lot about you, and I’ve learned a little more about you since yesterday. You can hurt me! Because I hate yesterday, I’ve never felt anything like it. I thought my insides had been taken out and I was shaking. To tell you the truth I thought…. I thought I lost you, and it hurt… And maybe I can hurt you too. Look, I know you’re uptight… I love you Lila, I really love you. You’re a PAIN IN THE ASS, but I love you! I got this pain and I figured, it’s time to go home but I love you and you are worth the pain. Anyway, I do love you, and I got that pain, and I need you, and that’s why I stopped the car!”


TAGS: love and pain and the whole damn thing 1973 alan j. pakula maggie smith timothy bottoms lila fisher walter elbertson spain love