Sunday, May 25, 2008

Homemade Remedies

Kitchen tip Tuesday is hosted by Tammy at Tammy's Recipes. My kitchen tip this week is a few "recipes" for homemade remedies using ingredients from your kitchen. I have five kids and this past week they were all sick with either the stomach flu or a bad cold (or Both). Here are some cheap and safe remedies that work for us. My children hate the taste of pedialyte but will tolerate the homemade version. Why pay $5.00 for a bottle that's loaded with chemicals when you can make it for next to nothing?

You can make your own remedies with just a few ingredients.

~Homemade Pedialyte Type Drink

1 cup apple juice (I use grape juice or punch that's 100% juice to hide the salty taste better)
2 cups water
1/2 to 1 tsp. salt (I use light salt or fine sea salt; and only 1/2 tsp. for kids)
Juice from one lemon or lime

Combine all the ingredients in a pitcher and store in the refrigerator. Tastes best very cold. Please see the comments section for more info on using the lite salt.

~Stomach Soothing Tea (also good for morning sickness)

1 cup boiling water
1 tsp. dried peppermint
1 tsp. dried camomile
1/2 tsp. minced fresh ginger * optional*

In a small pan, pour boiling water over all the ingredients. Cover and steep for 10 minutes. Then strain into a teacup.

~Mustard Plaster (for chest congestion)

1 T. mustard powder
2 T. flour

In a small bowl, mix the powder with the flour. Add enough water to make a paste.
Spread the paste over half of a dish towel. Fold the towel in half over the paste then apply to the chest. Don't apply directly to skin without a towel. Check often to make sure there is no irritation to the skin.

~Fever Spray

1/4 cup rubbing alcohol
1/4 cup witch hazel
3 drops peppermint essential oil
2-3 drops lavender essential oil

In a clean spray bottle, combine all the ingredients in the order listed. Shake to mix and then chill in the refrigerator.
Spray onto pulse points to reduce fever, avoid eyes and mouth.
This feels cool and soothing when you have a fever. It smells nice too.

~Chest Rub

12 drops eucalyptus essential oil
8 drops hyssop essential oil
4 drops peppermint essential oil
2 T. almond or olive oil

Mix essential oils into carrier oil in a small bowl. Rub onto chest. Cover chest with a cotton towel and place hot water bottle on top.

You should be able to find all of the ingredients at the grocery store and a health food store. If you cannot find some ingredients you can purchase online here, here and here.

As with all home remedies; please use caution and common sense while using them. If you or your child has health problems, you should check with your doctor first before trying them.

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Some of My Favorite Resources

This is my first time participating in Kitchen Tip Tuesdays which is hosted by Tammy @ Tammy's Recipes. My "tip" for this week is to share my sources for hard-to-find items. It has taken me a long time to find sources for different kitchen items as I have started to cook everything from scratch. I thought it might save someone else some time to see 25 great resources-ok 24 if you're coming here from Tammy's ;-) (in no particular order) all in one place. Hope you find something new.

1. Pleasant Hill Grain. Great resource for juicers, grain mills, dehydrators.

2. The Homestead Kitchen. Lot's of recipes, photos and links.

3. Juicers For Less. Juicers of course, yogurt making supplies, grain mills.

4. Something Better Natural Foods. Huge supply of organic food, herbs and products. I especially like the fact that they have pictures of each product and lots of recipes. They can ship nation wide.

5. The Vegetarian Express. A vegetarian and vegan food line. But don't over look them if you are not veg, they have bulk herbs, unique seasoning blends, unsweetened coconut which can be hard to find and other cool products like brown sesame seeds for cooking.

6. Azure Standard. The grand-daddy of organic bulk buying. Great prices on organic items, herbs, and groceries especially if you don't live close to a health food store. First time customers can request a free giant catalog. Monthly specials and they ship nation wide.

7. Lehmans. This is probably one of my favorite sites for all things for the home. They started in 1955 in Kindron, Ohio to sell products to the Amish. Today they have a retail store with a cafe in it. They still cater to Amish families so many of their products are old fashioned things that can be hard to find. Here are some highlights of things that they sell: tools, toys made in the USA for reasonable prices, kitchen gadgets, canning items, Zote and Fels-Naptha soaps for those of you who like to make your own laundry soap, recipe booklets for $2.00 that cover all kinds of topics including cheese, yogurt and butter making. They even sell wringer washers like I remember my grandma used to have and root beer making kits. They have a free print catalog for non-electric annual items with any order, and if you spend over $25.00 you can request their "visit us" packet that has local brochures and maps in it. You have to request both items as they don't come automatically.

8. Mountain Rose Herbs. Lindsay at Passionate Homemaking gave me this tip: organic coconut oil by the GALLON for $30.00 plus shipping. WOW I just paid $11.00 for 16 oz. at the health food store. Many other herbal products that are great deals as well.

9. Bulk Herb Store. Tammy at Tammy's Recipes gave me this tip on buying bulk herbal teas. You can get 1/2 pound of pregnancy tea mix for less than $8.00. Lot's of great recipes and herbal mixture instructions. Don't miss their new mama & baby kit. It contains teas, salves and herbs to make different baby products like a baby powder that contains lavender powder. I bet it smells great!

10. Essential Wholesale. Have you ever seen recipes for natural cleaners and soaps but wondered how they could be economical? I used to think that making a cleaner with lavender in it couldn't be very frugal when a 1 oz. bottle can be $7.00 to $11.00. I realize that you only need a few drops, but still.... this site sells everything from 1 oz. size to 55 gallon drums. Obviously it's geared towards people who want to make natural products to sell, but for example: you can get an 8 oz. bottle of lavender essential oil for $24.00. That should last a long time. You can also get soap making supplies and cosmetic products to make yourself like beeswax lip gloss.

11. Naturally Frugal Cleaning. Michelle has a great website with tons of "recipes" for making your own natural cleaners. Huge amount of great resources and tips.

12. The Herbwife's Kitchen. This is a really unique site with a mix of recipes that combine herb use for cooking and healing. Really fun to learn from and read.

13. Tammy's Recipes. Tammy has the most wonderful recipes that taste great, and her pictures & personal anecdotes about her family make for a fun and sweet blog.

14. Passionate Homemaking. Lindsay is a mom who has loads of great information about cooking healthy for your family and recipes. She has great info on soaking grains if you are following the Nourishing Traditions type of diet.

15. Pioneer Woman Cooks. Wow is all I can say! Her pictures are so yummy looking you want to try everything! A must read blog.

16. Bakerella. All things yummy from the oven. Esp. great cupcake recipes.

17. The Nourishing Gourmet. Great recipes and lots of info about nourishing food.

18. The Hillbilly Housewife. Tons of free information and research as well as recipes. I really love the section on making your own convenience foods.

19. Living on A Dime. I ordered Tawra's book and just love it. The ebooks are a great resource. Sign out for her newsletter for free with lots of great tips and recipes each time it arrives in your email.

20. Nourishing Indian Food. If you like the book Nourishing Traditions than you will like this site as it has Indian food with unique ingredients.

21.The Aldi Queen. If you shop at Aldi's then you will like this site with shopping lists and recipes.

22. Vermont Country Store. Looking for a product from yesterday and can't find it?? here's your source. Everything from food, vintage candy from your childhood, herbal salves, modest clothing, perfumes, tools and gadgets. I am going to give my grandma a gift certificate and catalog this year for her birthday as they carry all kinds of products that she has a hard time finding.

23. Sue Gregg. She is a wonderful teacher and her approach to whole foods is very down-to-earth and easy to do. I have my wish list going of all the books I want to purchase. I esp. like her Christian approach (for myself) as I don't care for the "new age" philosophy.

24. Urban Homemaker. Lots of kitchen gadgets as well as books and cookbooks.

25. The Real Food Revolution. Nice blog with recipes and info on "real food" on a budget, losing weight while eating healthy etc.

Saturday, May 17, 2008

The Harp Pin

Show and Tell

Kelli at There Is No Place Like Home hosts Show & Tell Friday's. This is my first time participating. I would like to tell you about a pin that has been in our family for over 100 years. Everything we know about the pin comes from my grandma who is 85.

Here is a picture of the pin. We call it the "Harp Pin" because it's shaped like a harp. My grandma DeKraker is pinning it on me on my wedding day October 19, 2002. It is made out of yellow gold and rose gold. It has seven rubies in it. We don't know who crafted it, but it was probably made by hand since it was the 1800's.

Here is a picture of my great-great grandparents. This is Garrett and Katrina Telder on their wedding day in 1885. Grandma is wearing the harp pin that we think was a wedding present.

Here is a picture of my grandpa and grandma DeKraker. She is the grand daughter of Katrina Telder who was the original owner of the pin. They are pictured here and grandma is wearing the pin.

One last photo to share. This is my great-great grandma Katrina Telder and her daughter which is my great grandma Della Cnossen (Telder). As you can see she is a young baby and Katrina has on her wedding dress and the pin. We think she took this picture on their anniversary.
I hope you have enjoyed the story and pictures of our families treasure.