Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Essential Oils can be deadly for pets

When we lived in Nebraska, we had two kitties, brothers , that we had from birth.  When one was bout 10 or 11, he got sick. The vet said the only thing we could do was put him down. It  was a sad day, and I asked what could have caused the illness. We went through all the things I used in the house, and when we got to Febreze, she told me its deadly for  pets.  Since then I have not used air sprays, or plug ins, or candles after finding one by one, they are all hazardous to health.  Thinking I was doing the best thing for family and pets, I began using essential oils. Made my own air sprays, cleaning products etc. Well,  a week or so ago, I read an article saying essential oils can be fatal to pets also, if you use the wrong ones.  I have not done any research on dogs, but for cats, here are the ones to avoid::Peppermint, Oregano,Clove, Sage, Citrus of any sort, cheap lavender but you can use carefully the good expensive lavender oil, do not use tea tree or Meleluca, Cinnamon, Wintergreen, Thyme, Birch, Pine, and Spruce. It also says to watch and not use any processed with  phenols.  Cats have thin, sensitive skin and absorb these oils, causing kidney and lover damage.  I will be changing a lot of formulas,  my fave bathroom air spray had cinnamon and clove oil in it, liked the spicy scent.   But not willing to hurt my sweet baby girls.  Oils are bad for dogs too, but you will need to look those up if you have pups.  Not hard.  Lots of info, aren't computers wonderful? We went from cold cold cold, to quite nice this week, upper 50s and 60s and by tomorrow they say 71.  There are leaf buds on the trees and Robins in the yard.  I am still not optimistic that spring is here, the weather guessers say we will have more cold the first part of March. At least it should be short, and likely not single digits like we had in January.  Most of us are tired of cold. I am looking forward to getting garden started again, They have already plowed the tomato and corn fields at the bottom of the mountain.  Aww yes, those fields that are grown in plastic runs(likely poly vinyl chloride which is bad for us) and of course, sprayed all trough the season with glyphosate, agent orange, hep C, Dicamba and all sorts o f other bad stuff. Please don't buy tomatoes that are not organic, you have no idea what has been done to them til you live in the middle of the growing area. Corn, potatoes and many others are the same. Tomorrow is Valentines Day so I wish you all a Happy day, spent with someone you love.  We are getting closer to spring with each passing day, this has been a very long winter, full of broken water pipes, well that needed a new pump, rutted roads and just plain being trapped inside for long periods due to ice and snow. Expensive repairs  for Doug and Marie.  And of course the flu that has been so bad this year. I started using imune oil on my feet each night. One school in Knoxville TN did this with one class, and only one child had the flu in that class.  School still was shut down because of so many others that were sick. And we have not hit peak season yet. Bummer. Eat well, stay warm, and well, it will be spring again one day soon.

Saturday, January 20, 2018

Oh No, more cats A good recipe for laundry detergent

Lillie has been trying to catch the cat in the cabinet for a couple of weeks now. I find her there many times a day. But the last few days she found there are more of those awful critters in the house. First I found her on the cupboard in the guest bathroom, batting at the cat in the mirror, then yesterday she found one in the reflection of the glass door on my space heater, the one that resembles a fireplace. So far she has had no luck getting any of them, but it keeps her busy.  I wonder if she is frustrated or just curious, she spends a lot of time  hunting these days.  The space heater has been much help these past weeks, we are much colder than normal here, as are a lot of areas. My sis is visiting Florida for a break from Nebraska's chill, and finding it cold there to, winter coat weather and in the 40s her first week there. The snow we had is finally melting away, maybe the kids will get back to school next week.  They are enjoying a lot of days off but will have to make them up somewhere. I am annoyed by an add for Cheerios I keep seeing, they use kids in their ad and say how Good goes around and around, and this cereal is so good for kids. Nope.  Their products are made from GMO grown crops so your babes are eating  glyphosate, and a host of brain and body damaging poisons if you allow them to have  it. Just a few steps down the cereal isle there will always be a section of organic products, and the cheerio like ones taste even better, are quite cheap and keep your kids from cancer, brain damage and other bad stuff.  Even the milk you put on cereal has to be watched, it is laden with hormones and anti- biotics, causing  our young girls to hit puberty at age 8 or less now, and the organics are  kind of under fire as not being truthfully labeled.  There are good alternatives, many organic plant milks, I have been using them since the 80's, and now find yogurt and other non dairy organic  things in the cases. Yea. Have you seen the stories this week about kids deciding to taste the Tide pods and other laundry pods? It can do them in, quite a serious problem.  I make my own soap, its inexpensive, and does a great job. In the laundry aisle you will find large boxes of laundry soda and Borax, about 3 and a half pounds each. And a bar of Fels Naptha soap. In an airtight container, mix the soda and Borax and grate the bar of soap,  I have a scoop that measures a heaping tablespoon, its enough for most loads. If you have a huge load or very dirty  one you may add 2 scoops. This is about 7 cents  a load, and lasts most people a very long time, there is only one of me so its about a years supply. I also make a spot remover that 's as good as any on the market, I think better. Mix equal parts of hydrogen peroxide and water 1/2 cup) and add 1 teaspoon of Dawn.  Keep in a spray bottle, spray stain, let sit overnight and wash.  I am all about taking the chemicals out of my home.  I had to have a cat put down that got very sick, the vet told me the Febreze spray I used on furniture etc had caused his illness. Makes you think.  I am hoping to get into  changing lifestyle to green with you in coming blogs.  Til then, stay warm, read labels and stay well.

Saturday, January 13, 2018

Oh No, There's a cat in the Cupboard

In the corner of my kitchen dining room, is a cabinet that was my mom's. It's tall, square, has a mirrored back and lights. It is holding all the dishes that belonged to my grandmothers.  From Gramma Sharp's wedding crystal to a large assortment of cut glass bowls, trays and dishes. And the wedding dishes that were Pat's and mine, a lovely set of cranberry glass  dishes.  A few days ago, Lillie our year old rescue kitty, discovered that a strange cat was hiding in this cabinet. She has spent many hours trying to go under, through and around to get to that irritating creature.  She goes under the couch in the front room and sneaks out hoping to catch it, sometimes she sits on the back of the couch and finds that darn cat has moved up to a higher shelf.  I tried getting a video but as soon as the camera is out, Lillie just sits and watches me.  It's very funny tho, she really thinks she can get that elusive kittie in the cupboard. So now I have a weird cardinal that watches herself in my car mirrors, and a cat that has an enemy in the kitchen cabinet.   We just came through a period of about 4 days in the upper 60's, really nice after that very cold spell. Yesterday a front came through and dropped the temps back into the freezer. We have a few cold days coming up again. Maybe not as long this time.  Have you tried tea tree oil yet?  There are so many good uses for it. I add it to  my mouthwash(home made) and to my cleaners. My standard cupboard, sink tub etc cleaner is 2/3 white vinegar, 1/3 water, a few drops of Dawn and a good amount of tea tree oil. I add scent too, my fave is citrus so usually lemon. I just got some grapefruit oil so will be trying that out next. This mixture kills as many germs as clorox or lysol without being  toxic. Very safe around pets, babies and you. Kills 99% of germs. Tea trees grow in Australia. They have a pleasant aroma. You can use it straight on a cut as a disinfectant but its strong so  I add a few drops of essential or carrier oil to it. It is considered to be an antifungal, antimicrobial substance. If you want to make a salve, you can melt 1/2 cup grated beeswax, add 1/2 cup of organic olive oil and 30 drops of tea tree oil. Pour into a glass jar and use as a salve for scrapes, cuts etc.   It has been used this way or straight to get rid of toe nail fungus and athletes foot.   Mom's Christmas cactus is blooming profusely, it started a few days before Christmas and  in the past keeps going until close to the first of April. Its huge, I need to split it down come spring. Looking for a home for a couple good sized plants.   The seed catalogs have begun arriving, I am starting to figure out what I want in my garden next spring. I do buy organic seeds, no GMO crap here. I am upset that President Trump is talking with Monsanto, does he have no idea what their poison sprays do to us and our country? The Dicamba he recently approved is killing trees. And more bees and insects too I would guess.  If we allow this to keep on, and kill our bees, butterflies, and now hummingbirds are being found dead, we will loose our pollinators and our ability to grow crops that have blooms. We all need to try and eat organic foods, it makes a big difference in your health, and we can push  the big six, Monsanto, Syngenta, Bayer, BASF, Dupont and Dow out the door. So many other countries are doing this, they value the good health of their people. Why do we want hospitals full of kids with cancer, and oldsters with Alzheimers? and aches and pains out the wazoo for so many who have no clue what their food is doing to them. In case you do not know, milk is full of anti biotics and hormones, and we are pushing our little girls into puberty at very young ages by  making them drink milk. Plant based milks are so much safer. I hate to see 9 year olds at the point we used to not see til our girls were in their early teens.  Make a difference this week, buy at least a few organic groceries, make a house hold cleaner, and do what you can to help our world be a better place for all of us. take care, stay warm, share hugs and love, they are free.

Monday, January 8, 2018

8 days in

2018 is only 8 days in and already a mixed bag.  Last summer I had septic tank woes, had to have all the fruit trees pulled out and the tanks, a series of 3, cleaned out. Cost a bunch, thanks to my sons, they loaned me the money to pay for the repairs. I am getting down to the last 4 payments to each of them to pay it off. So yesterday, Doug was out in his yard and heard something. Found water spewing out from under my house.  Turned off the water to the house, didn't stop the water. Ended up having to shut off the well pump. Did get a plumber, nice young man from Iowa to come out this morning and repair the damage, it was a broken water pipe to my outside hose, nothing to do with the house.  Not too pricy. BUT, he found another problem, the sewer line to the septic tank has sprung a leak.  It's too cold to dig it up right now, and I will have to figure out how to pay for that anyway. So it seems the prolonged very cold weather is doing a lot of bad things to a lot of people.  And Doug's truck clonked out on him on the way to town this morning, after just having it repaired a week or two ago.   Well, there have been good things too, like the week before Christmas, I got a message saying my kids in NE were sending a package I was to watch for, the Saturday before  the holiday, they said they had mailed it late but expedited shipping had been applied. So I watched., It was getting late, and I decided to go to bed. There was a knock on the door, I hurried out to open it, package had arrived. There stood Brian, Erin and Sammy, smiling from ear to ear, I should have picked up on some of the clues but didn't.  One of the best holiday surprises ever, so glad to see them.  They left just ahead of this really cold weather. I have not been out to shop or to church since mid December. Hoping to get out the next few days as we should hit 61 by Thursday.   I want to ask a question. Have any of you entered the Publishers Clearing House contest?  Figured what the heck, the money would sure help pay off all these bills, couldn't hurt so I entered on line. And promptly started getting emails out the yazoo, do this, order that, search for this. After a few days I got sick of it and unsubscribed and added them to the junk mail list. How come you can;t just enter the contest and be done with it? They bug you incessantly. I wonder if anyone ever won anything really or they just use shills to say they won.  Now you are warned. And if you won or know someone who did, I would like to know. Thank You. The kids in our area got an extra long Christmas vacation, still out, we were to have an ice storm today, we did not get it here , just rain. It didn't start raining til late morning and the temps had warmed up by then. Thankfully. Lots of days left in 2018, wonder what they will hold.  Guess we will find out. Long cold winter?  (Global warming)  Anyway, our winters tend to end in March for the most part, have daffodils along the roads and forsythia blooming by then so we are only 8 weeks away from that. Planning to stock up on things I can eat til spring if need be.  Stay warm, hope you have nicer weather  coming  to you too.  Who knows what this new year will bring, hope lots of good things.

Friday, December 22, 2017

Merry Christmas! My Herbal health gift to you

This country seems to be obsessed with using medicine. Most of them create the need for more medicines, and few cure anything, maybe mask symptoms making you think you feel better.  All have side effects. You can take control of your health and avoid all the expense  and side effects.  Herbs have been used for centuries and are regaining in popularity for many reasons.  Inflammation causes pain, stress, and injures cells. Leads to cancer, heart problems, arthritis and more.  So lets start with anti inflammatory herbs. Two of the very best: Turmeric,  could be considered a new miracle rug.  I started taking it at 18 years old to avoid the arthritis my parents had, and their cancers.Turmeric lowers bad cholesterol,and prevents fat deposits in arteries. Keeps you from developing  aches and pains and illnesses.Ginger works much the same way, preventing pain and swelling also prevents blood clots and heart disease.  The two of these cost under 10 bucks for a 3 month supply. Beats  meds all to pieces. Ashwaganda is an Ayurvedic herb, it calms your mind, reduces stress and allows peaceful sleep. Love it. Motherwort does much the same, reducing stress, calming the body, acting as a sedative. It's a member of the mint family. Hawthorn  was something my hubby used to protect his heart, prevent arrhythmia. Also helps cholesterol.  Saw palmetto helps prevent male baldness and protects the prostate. Cinnamon is warming, good for colds, cold weather, just make something with it in, oatmeal, cookies etc.  Garlic and onions are both considered to be a natural penicillin. Chewing a little piece of fresh garlic instantly eases a sore throat. Eating lots of both on a steady basis will help you avoid colds and flu. Rosemary and sage are both great herbs, Rosemary increases blood flow to the brain, helping to prevent Alzheimer's.  Sage helps increase the memory, and works like Rosemary.  Add these to your soups, stews, meat, veggies what ever you can.And the last one for today is Astragalus, another Ayurvedic herb. It's an anti oxidant, that helps protect your heart. If you have not read Mother Earth Living magazine, I recommend it. So much good information for living a good, healthy life style.  There is a lot more info on herbs in the new issue.  On another note, if you use nail polish, be aware that it contains some very harmful ingredients,  toluene, formalehyde, triphenol, phosphate and Kylene, I have tried one brand of water based natural polish, it said you could remove it with rubbing alcohol, but that did not work. There is a brand you can check out called  Ella &Mila.  It's a safe to use product. Christmas is only 2 days away now,   I wish for you a day spent with loved ones, family and friends. And a New Year that brings better things for all of us.We have a slim chance of snow flurries, suits me. I came south to get away from all that cold stuff. Its in the 50s today, but gloomy and rain moving in. Have a great holiday, have some healthy food and start the new year  learning better options. Til next time.

Friday, December 15, 2017

Vegan cream soup base, keep pets away From Christmas tree recipe and a great gift

 Pat had diabetes, and heart problems after a while, needing  a 6 bypass surgery. I was told to avoid any canned or boxed foods, which we mostly did anyway, they contain many hidden  ingredients, salt and sugar you  are not told about  and other stuff. My lovely daughter in law, Marie, gave me a diabetic cook book with great recipes, one which I use all the time, and have started making quart jars of the mix for my son in NE, he likes it much better than canned mushroom soup.  So here's what  to do. In a large bowl,  put 2 cups dried powdered organic soy mil, 3/4 cup of arrowroot powder, lots of folk would use corn starch here, but corn in this country is sprayed with poisons to the point of making it bad for your health, so avoid corn oils, starch and corn that s canned etc,  next is 1/4 cup vegetable bouillon granules, 2 tablespoons of dry onion flakes, 1 teaspoon thyme powder,, 1 teaspoon basil, 1 teaspoon black pepper. Mix well. Keep in frig. To use, mix 1/3 cup of mix with 1 and 1/4 cup water, mix well,  heat over medium heat stirring til thickened.  Now you can add (cooked)  celery, mushrooms, broccoli, chicken or whatever and have soup of your choice. Or just add to your casserole like you would mushroom soup. if you are vegan, add a splash of olive oil if not vegan add a spoon of butter.  It's almost Christmas, maybe you have your tree up. If your pup or kitty chews on it or messes with it, make a spray of 1 teaspoon of turmeric powder and enough lemon juice to be thin enough to spray on the tree. They hate the smell. And how about a fancy gift for a special friend?  Try a Pine Salt Scrub.  Mix 1/2 cup shea butter and 1/3 cup of coconut oil, melt over hot water til combined, chill til set. Put in food processor and add 3 T olive oil, 2 T finely minced pine needles, 40 drops fir essential oil, 20 drops pine essential oil, 10 drops grapefruit essential oil. Blend in processor til thick. Put in a bowl and stir in1/2 cup course salt. Make it pretty for gifting, nice container, trim etc.  It's just over a week til Christmas, and this morning my mom's Christmas cactus has started blooming. Right on time.   It's become quite large again, will need splitting by spring. If anyone needs a good sized plant I will be happy to share.  Been making mint truffles  today, still smells like mint in the kitchen.  It's cold and dreary but warm weather on tap for next week.  Hang in, get all those last minute things done so you can enjoy the holidays as they are meant to be, with family and friends.  Will miss my Nebraska  ones again this year, was nice to visit with them in years past.

Monday, December 4, 2017

Awwww Rats!

 Rolled out of bed this morning after a cuddle with Lib and Lil, made the bed and got dressed for the.  day. As I was putting on my sweat shirt, I noticed something ODD. Holes in the elbows of my shirt. And its my favorite outfit, oh yea, it's old, bought it before Pat died so over 10 years old. But it has kitties on it, and is a nice weight, not heavy or light, just in between.  My first thought was how to fix it. Maybe patches, maybe cut off the sleeves and create a vest to go over another shirt. Anyone else would just toss it and get something else, but can I find another I like as well?  Then while donning my matching sox, some  the kids gave me a few years back, yike, have gone through the toes of them.   Oh well, went ahead to the kitchen and fed the girls, had breakfast and started cleaning the kitchen., My makings for cosmetics cupboard needed reorganizing, thats done, I swept and scrubbed surfaces, amazing how well my vinegar water, tea tree oil and dawn cleaner works.  Took time out to go mail some letters, one of our church ladies is in the hospital, and had a package to go out too. Opened the care door and remembered I need to repair that, part of the molding above the door is falling off.  My car is a 94 Chrysler, darn good car, except its rusty and has a cracked windshield and a few other things starting to wear out.  But it runs great now that I put about  a thousand bucks repair into it last summer.  Back to cleaning, sweeping the floors I am reminded I need to get the house re blocked, so the floors will quit cracking, also see some molding strips pulling away and the tub surround has come out a bit. Hopefully by summer  I can get that done, may need help finding a blocking person that's reasonable.  So now I have the floors swept and break out the scrubber.   The handle broke off a while back, but it works just fine otherwise. Doug tried to epoxy the handle back together but it would not hold.  And the vacuum died, with fur babies I had to replace that.  Thank goodness for credit cards.  It struck ,me, I am old and falling apart and so is everything I own.  But you know what? This is only a temporary place. If I can hang in and be a good Christian and follow the rules and do what I am here for, there's a much better place waiting.  Makes my day to think of that.  Putting in a word  with  God today for all my friends who are sick, having surgery or having problems, I ma blessed, have more than I need and continue  to keep busy hopefully doing some good as far as spreading a little cheer, a smile, or sharing a card with a friend.  I often wonder if Christ will come again at Christmas, like the first time.  We are getting close to that day again.   When we got to  church yesterday, the preacher who was coming from another town  had called to say he had a flat tire and would be late if he got there at all, he did, and not far into the service.  We had so few people there I felt bad  because it was the beginning of the cantata and Christmas services.  We had an advent candle toi light, no matches, tho  some were found,  seemed all that could go wrong did so, but  it was still a good service, with communion and fellowship abounding.  God works in mysterious ways I guess.  We all left smiling and talking to each other. Nice morning, and inspirational all the way.  Don;t forget what time of year it is, and how we should remember this spirit all year, helping others, sharing a hug or a smile. Love to all.