I can’t believe we have been in California now for a little over two weeks. The time has flown by and while our house isn’t completely moved in…it’s pretty close. Ideally, if I could, I would love to live in a house that was so clean it didn’t look lived in. It’s the same feel you get when you walk into your hotel room. Everything has it’s place…neat and tidy. Fresh, clean, peaceful and purposeful. And then, BAM! Less than 5 minutes, shoes, diaper bags, and toys explode the room while the bed becomes the trampoline, kitchen dinner table, and changing table all at once. Sigh.
Thankfully, most of my mom friends are in the same boat as me. They make sure the house is clean but it’s maybe not the most organized. It’s comforting to go for a play date and see clean laundry piled up in the corner and dirty dishes stacked in the sink. They are willing to have our company over keeping a clean house and they trust me not to judge them which I don’t… because my house looks the same. 😉
Anyways, after being sick for two days this week and then taking care of a sick baby for two more days, my first priority was to get ahead of all of the house work that fell by the wayside as I laid on the couch. The small messes can bother me so much that I would rather keep cleaning than eat or shower. Can anyone relate? Ugh!
So to be realistic and more balanced… I have to learn to incorporate the timer rule.
What’s the timer rule?
Do as much as you can until the timer goes off. When you have small children you are consistently interrupted. Someone always needs help washing hands, wiping a nose, diaper change and so forth. So, I’ve learn to work in 10 – 15 minute increments (this is about how long I have before one of my cuties needs something).
To keep myself from getting overwhelmed, I set the timer for 10 minutes and see how much of that room I can pick up. This is also a great game to play with your kids. With our two year old, I put on “Clean Up” music and we see how much we can clean up before the timer goes off. Just make sure if it’s a video your child can’t see the images or it just because more screen time with you reminding them that it’s actually time to clean up. 😉
My timer ruler works like a charm. You can actually get a lot cleaned up in 10 minutes. And I even like to take the timer rule one step further…Rule 2: Keep every room clean enough that it only takes 10 minutes or less to pick up. This is one is a little more tricky because it requires me to train everyone else in the family but we’re getting there. 🙂
You know what else is great to get done in 10 minutes?
Making food in the kitchen of course! I love cooking and baking but with 2 mobile children I love when healthy + yummy + convenience all comes together.
Since we moved to California we have been seriously addicted to the small Sweet Bell peppers which is funny because my daughter has boycotted bell peppers the last 8 months. Todd and I love them so she still gets them on a regular basis but they usually get left on her plate but that’s okay. (It’s all part of my long term strategy for healthy eating – see more here).
Anyways, what better way to eat these peppers than with a nice bowl of creamy cool Ranch dressing?
SO YUMMY! Because I’m a LOVER of ranch but dairy-free, I once spent $8 on bottle of dairy-free ranch at the grocery store. I know insane, right? But that’s how badly and rarely I saw dairy-free ranch being offered. The ranch was worth every penny and my family thought so too because it was gone in 1 day. Unfortunately, the store never carried the ranch dressing again. But this was probably a blessing in disguise for my grocery budget.
Not being able to find dairy-free ranch I started trying recipes online. I have tried literally everything. Soaking cashews, paleo, eggs with mayo, no eggs with mayo and just got tired of experimenting.
I stopped making ranch dressing all together for a year. The main reason being… I was tired of ranch tasting great the first day, strong tasting the second then uneatable by the third day.
I also wanted something easy. Easy ingredients, an easy process and that didn’t require other expensive ingredients like cashew, dairy-free mayo or spices that I had no use for other than for my dressing.
I will NOT be making any other type of Ranch Dressings. 🙂 This is now my go to dressing. I’ve already made it several times. My family loves it. It’s easy to make, cheap to make, and very simple.
Here’s how to make your own Dairy-Free Ranch Dressing:
Dairy-free Ranch Dressing
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Enjoy creamy homemade Ranch dressing that is egg-free, refined sugar free, mayo-free and dairy-free.
Place can of coconut milk and grapeseed oil in a blender. Next, add all your spices. Blend on high until well mixed. Taste test and add more pepper if needed.
Place ranch dressing in a jar or tupperware with a tight lid and let dressing chill for 2-3 hours. (This will thicken the ranch) 🙂
Enjoy dipping your favorite vegetables!
* Don't use coconut oil - it won't taste right and the texture will be wrong.
I have also made this with olive oil and the taste is okay but grape seed oil is by far the most tasty.
*You can certainly eat your ranch dressing right away and skip the refrigeration part all together. We actually saved out some and placed the rest in the refrige. Remember, this thickens the dressing so don't worry if it seems a little liquidy.
I would love to hear from you. If you give this recipe a try, please let me know by giving the recipe a rating and leaving a comment.
It was a hit to say the least. She loved it and was devouring cherry tomatoes like they was no tomorrow.
The best part about of this recipe – the dressing tastes great day 2 and day 3. I’m not sure after that because it was gone by then but I love that you get all the flavor without the pungency.
Oh and before I forget, I wanted to show you a picture of new kitchen. It’s by far my favorite room in the house.
I seriously love this kitchen.
So many reasons why I love this kitchen.
The Big Counter space – so I can actually cook
All the Cupboard space – at our last place I had to store dishes in our basement, storage, and our dinning room hutch
Full Size Appliances
It Overlooks our living room – I can wash dishes or cook and still keep an eye on the kids.
Here is a picture of my old kitchen. Across from the sink was the refrige. There’s really no comparison so you can see why I’m still pitching myself about my new kitchen.
It wasn’t a great kitchen to cook in at all. You would literally get out 3 items and your counter space was gone. I found myself complaining a lot about our kitchen the first few weeks living there. Then I finally just had to tell myself, some day you will get a great big beautiful kitchen but for now this is what you have and it just needs to be good enough. I never complained about it again. Instead, I focused on making the most of it and dreaming about my future beautiful kitchen.
Looking back I am grateful for my old little kitchen as well. My family shared so many happy and cherished moments around food as we bumped into each other. I’m thankful for a bigger kitchen to gather the family but I just wanted you to know that even food bloggers don’t always have the most ideal place to cook. 🙂
I would love to hear from you. Do have a tip to keep your house organized? Love Ranch dressing or just have a super small kitchen?