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Finding the Perfect Study Spot

I don’t care what anyone tells you, finding the perfect “spot” to study is absolutely essential to your success as a student. It is magic when you find that place you look forward to go study, and it is my firm belief that it should feel like home. This process is very individualized, and it’s all about figuring out what works best for you. For me, this study spot usually takes the form of a coffee shop. After a year of exploring, I have compiled all of the elements that make up my perfect working environment.

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  1. Coffee Coffee Coffee: As previously noted, I like to go to coffee shops to study. First and foremost, because I like coffee, but also out of necessity; caffeine keeps me awake and moving. That is why my #1 requirement for a study spot is good coffee.
  2. Small Space: I don’t like to go anywhere that’s too crowded. Too many people means too many distractions. It is also very difficult to go somewhere that you will run in to a lot of people you know. Less people also means more seating options (and not having to fight over outlets.)
  3. Good Lighting: It may sound crazy, but good lighting is essential to productivity. Too bright, I get headaches, too dim, I fall asleep.
  4. Outdoor Space: Weather permitting, I like to go somewhere that offers outdoor seating. If I have been working for a long period of time, sometimes it can be nice to have a change of scenery without having to go very far. A little sun can go a long way.
  5. Wifi: Free, reliable Wifi in a public space can be difficult to find. Unless you have your own hotspot, if you are doing work on the computer, good Wifi is non-negotiable.
  6. Comfortable Seating: It may seem obvious, but there needs to be comfortable seating… But not too comfortable, or you will fall asleep. It may sound nice to curl up on that couch by the fireplace, but sometimes it can be easy to drift off. I like to find a nice table next to an outlet.
  7. Friendly Staff: Last but not least, I always value friendly staff. Baristas that remember your name or favorite drink are to be cherished.

 

 

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Recipe

Cook the Perfect Spaghetti Squash

Spaghetti squash has become wildly popular lately as a low-carb option to replace spaghetti noodles. It’s paleo-friendly, naturally gluten-free and fairly inexpensive. It is also super nutritious, offering significant amounts of vitamin C, vitamin A, iron, calcium, omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, which support a healthy immune system and can help prevent heart disease.

Last fall, I went through a pretty serious spaghetti squash faze. During that time, I   experimented countless ways to cook, roast, and sauté that beautiful yellow vegetable (I even tried slow cooking it in the Crock Pot!) I have finally decided that this is my tried and true favorite way to prepare spaghetti squash.

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First step is to cut the squash in half, lengthwise. Be sure to use a very sharp knife.

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Next, using a metal spoon, scoop out all the “guts” (seeds and pulp.)

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This next step is optional, and looking at other recipes, I found that not many other recipes call for this. Using my fingers, I like to rub the insides with olive oil and sprinkle on sea salt and pepper. I think it just gives it a little more flavor, but depending on what recipe you are using the squash for, you might want to skip this.

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Place the squash face-down on a baking sheet and cook at 375 for about 45 minutes… Cook time will vary depending on the size of your squash.

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They come out looking beautiful! I like to flip my squash over and allow to cool for about 5 minutes before shredding.

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Last by not least, using a fork, just pull the strands out. It comes out looking like spaghetti noodles!

How to Cook Spaghetti Squash

Prep time: 5 min

Cook time: 45 min

Total time: 50 min

Ingredients

Spaghetti Squash (about 2 lbs)

1 Tbs Olive Oil

2 tsp Salt

1 tsp Pepper

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 375ºF
  2. Slice squash in half, lengthwise.
  3. Rub squash with olive oil. Season with salt and pepper.
  4. Place squash on baking sheet, cut side down.
  5. Bake in preheated oven for 45 minutes.
  6. Allow to cool for 5 minutes. Using a fork, pull the strands out.
  7. Enjoy!

How you decide to cook your spaghetti squash will depend on what you are using it for and how much time you have to spend on it. This may not be the fastest or most hands-free way, but in my opinion, it is the tastiest. Keep an eye out for another recipe coming soon… My favorite spaghetti squash entrée! Thanks for reading!

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DIY, Recipe

My 5 Favorite Homeopathic Remedies

Winter time is beautiful. Hot chocolate, iceskating, Christmas, and… Cold and flu season. My family members are all getting sick… Which has meant frequent trips to Good Harvest for me (I’m not complaining about that.) I have been doing so much reading and experimenting lately, there were a few key remedies that I believe really helped me feel better quickly. So, I decided to compile a list of my five favorite homeopathic cold remedies.

  1. Homemade Vapor Rub

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A heavenly combination of coconut oil, beeswax, cocoa butter, and some amazing essential oils. This homemade version of a vapor rub is great for boosting the immune system and clearing out head and chest congestion. It also has some great anti bacterial properties! It’s both natural and effective, and the best part, it can keep for 12 months! I rub it on the bottoms of my feet and throw on some socks, as well as on my chest and behind my ears. I love this stuff.

2. Steam Inhalation

Simply fill a large bowl with hot water, 3 drops of pine or rosemary oil, 3 drops of peppermint oil, and 2 drops of eucalyptus oil. Place a towel over your head and the bowl, and inhale the steam into your lungs and chest. Try to do this for 5-10 minutes. This loosens the mucus in your chest, it’s amazing how well this works! This recipe is based on information provided for me by the Good Harvest staff, they are very knowledgeable. There are countless other oil combinations to try, this is just the one I liked the best.

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3. Diffuser

When I am sick, I constantly have the diffuser going in my room. The diffuser helps to purify the air and helps me to relax, among other things. Depending on what you are sick with determines what oils to put in. Lavender is soothing, peppermint is great for headache relief, lemon is very purifying. Mix it up. Eucalyptus is my favorite when I am sick. Research new blends to try!

4. Bone Broth

I love to pick up beef bones from the butcher at Good Harvest to make homemade bone broth. I also love to do chicken, and even save the bones from the Thanksgiving turkey to make broth! Your grandma’s soup wasn’t just a hoax, bone broth promotes a healthy immune system, improved digestion, strong muscle repair, inhibits infections, among many other amazing benefits! It’s also very economical! I love cooking it in the slow cooker for several days. I drink it straight out of a mug. Sometimes the broth is also good to be made into other soups… Whatever! I use a recipe from an old cookbook, but I linked the most similar recipe I could find.

5. Braggs Apple Cider Vinegar

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There are a number of uses for apple cider vinegar, probably much more than you realize. It’s great for detoxing, sore throats, clearing sinus’, and digestion. I recommend researching the many different kinds of teas and syrups that can be made with apple cider vinegar. Here are a few I found:

Cold and Flu Brew

The Bearded Iris

Kick a Cold Tea

Home Remedies

Disclaimer: I am in no way a doctor, and these home remedies are only suggestions of what worked for me.  They are not intended as a diagnosis or prescription, and should not be in place of medical treatment and/or advice from a professional.

 

 

 

 

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