Thursday, March 6, 2014

A Few Things...

I have several things to write about, but I thought I'd just do it in one post to keep it simple.  I'll expand on these eventually; but until then, enjoy learning a little bit in these paragraphs that I've written :-).

I'm going to be trying some new things and/or going back to things the way I used to do them.  I'm excited because I feel as though I'm going back to doing things the way I want to, not the way that is forced by a too-busy-life.  I'm not doing things out of convenience now... so I'm able to do more research and get back to what I think is best.  I'm going to start slow and continue to add things as I am able.

Natural Remedies
Karis has had a bad cough, and it doesn't matter what medicines we give her, it continues.  I told Robert this morning that since medicine hasn't been working, I want to try some natural remedies.  I would feel better about them anyway.

I ordered some Elderberries (I can either buy these or medicine, so either way I'm spending money), and I'm going to make some homemade Elderberry Syrup.

Why would I use Elderberry Syrup?  As you'll read in the blog post, there are lots of reasons:

It strengthens the immune system.  It shortens the length of the flu.  It can prevent the flu.  Rich in anti-oxidents.  Is an anti-inflammatory.  It is an anti-viral.  And I've read on other articles, they are great for cough (which is what Karis continues to have despite anything we've tried medically).  Karis also gets strep really easily and I want to try to prevent that.

I also plan to continue using more essential oils.

I'll write more about these later, but the ones that I use regularly are: Thieves, Peace and Calming, Stress Away, Lavender, Peppermint, Joy, Purification, Valor, and Lemon.  I plan on buying RC and Raven soon to help with cough.

All of these are listed in my product recommendations here: Courtney's Young Living Website.

Traditional Soaked Bread
Traditional soaked whole wheat bread is important because it breaks down certain enzymes that aid in digestion.  Since Karis has issues with digestion (always has), and she eats a lot of my bread (I bake it once a week), I decided to go back to the soaking step.  Her digestion improves with this added step.  I will use this recipe: My New Favorite Whole Wheat bread, but add the step of soaking, and take away the dough enhancer (soy lecithin, vital wheat gluten, citric acid, and ginger).  To add the step of soaking, I add an additional 1/4 cup of water (I double this recipe for my newer bread machine) and add 2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar.  I allow it to soak over-night, then I start the process the next morning.  I don't add the yeast until the morning.

You can read more about soaking over at the Elliott Homestead and Passionate Homemaking.

Natural and Homemade Products
I'm going to walk into this step very slowly.  I can very easily get obsessed with this so I have to be careful.  Currently, I am buying all of our natural products.  I use Honest Company products for most things; though, there are some things that I prefer over them.  The Honest Company has amazing cleaners; in fact, I cannot make cleaners that work as well.  So for now, I will continue using them and buying these products about every 6 weeks, or as needed.  Their bathroom cleaner, multi-surface cleaner, and toilet cleaners are amazing.  They clean better than any natural OR conventional products that I have purchased as well as homemade.  So I will definitely continue buying these.
I currently use the Honest Company shampoo/body wash and conditioner, but I think I am going to go back to Everyone Soap (this is what the kids have been using) Kiss My Face
for shampoo/body wash and conditioner.
and I've been using Kiss My Face Active deodorant, but it doesn't work great, so I'm going to try this one based on the reviews: Alvera All Natural Roll On Deodorant.
Most of the reviews have said that it works VERY well, and I trust the reviews.  If it doesn't work out, I will be making my own again.  I use this recipe: 8 tablespoons coconut oil, 1/4 cup arrowroot powder and baking soda, and a few drops of essential oil.  I have made this recipe and used it before many times.  I have stopped in the past because I went to something more convenient (when I was teaching full time).  If I can use one that works well that I don't have to make, that's fine with me.

Chickens and Garden
I've already started planning for the garden.  My raised beds have been moved to an area that may do better, and we've added more soil.  We will need to put some chicken wire around them, but then they should be ready to go.  I've been sprouting seeds indoors while we wait for the weather to get warmer. Some are ready to plant soon!  Hoping we have a nice spring coming.  It's still pretty chilly out!
We also have chickens that have been giving us eggs (though with the cold, they haven't given us a lot this past week).  I LOVE having chickens!  It's one of my favorite things about "homesteading."  I realize we'll probably never be able to do more than gardening and chickens in our little yard, but that's enough for me. High maintenance doesn't work for our lifestyle anyway!  Homesteading to me means learning to do more at home with things that we have on hand.  One day at a time!

Here are some pics of the chickens and their beautiful eggs (with bright yellow yolks) :-).





And our sprouting plants.


I love that they are growing towards the sun.


Despite all the good things added, I still have some things that aren't necessarily good for me... but I'm taking one day at a time.  I figure adding good things will help me balance things out :-).

Until Next Time...

1 comment:

Liz Debowski said...

This is great! I just ordered some all natural face wash for myself and am looking to switch over to all natural shampoo and soap for my kids and hubby. You always have such great info! Thanks for posting!!!