Friday, September 6, 2013

My journey into the world of essential oils.

Up until earlier this year I thought essential oils were just to make things smell “pretty”. I knew that melaleuca (tea tree) oil had some therapeutic properties but that was about the extent of my medicinal knowledge. After both Kim and I had to deal with some health issues last year, I decided to do some studying on natural ways of healing and stumbled into aromatherapy. As I learned more about using essential oils, or EO's, I was amazed at the healing properties they have…..either from inhaling, ingesting, or topical applications. The first oil I purchased was lavender, mainly because I am in love with the scent. Most people know that lavender has calming properties, but did you also know it is a great antiseptic? Lavender also helps with pain relief, skin disorders, respiratory, digestive, and circulatory issues, and even as a bug repellent. Phew!! All that with one simple oil! Now multiply those benefits a hundred fold by combining different EO’s. That is a lot of healing power!!!

The first thing I ever made specifically for a therapeutic purpose was this awesome salve I found over at Camp Wander. One of the great things is that you can take the basic salve formula and blend in any EO you want. Just this afternoon I made a batch of regular antiseptic salve and another with a blend of Lemon, Lavender, and Peppermint which is phenomenal for allergies!! Hop on over to her page for this recipe and many more, and while you there I recommend subscribing to her page. Rebecca is a kick in the pants and just chock full of great information!!

Another great source for EO information and ‘recipes’ is Lea over at A Drop of This. Of course she offers up a lot more than just that, AND she is a sweetie pie!!
I’m loving everything I am learning so much I am thinking of taking courses in Natural Medicine. One of my favorite quotes definitely applies to my life….

“Life is either a daring adventure or nothing at all” Helen Keller

**update** Just as I was preparing to post, I got the great information that I have been approved as a Spark Naturals affiliate*!!  Spark Naturals is a wonderful source of pure, therapeutic grade essential oils and now if you use the coupon code bdoodle you can receive 10% off your purchase!  

*In the interest of full disclosure, this is an affiliate link.  In addition to you getting 10% off your purchase, I receive a little something too 

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Meet the newest addition!

Just a super quick post to introduce my new prickly bundle of joy.
Drum roll please.....................

Meet Norka

This beautiful little hedgehog was born on May 5th and we brought her home on September 1st.  There is a lot to taking care of hedgies, not a critter for everyone, but we did our homework and decided we could certainly give her a good home. 

One of these days I will get the full "family" album on here and you can see just how crazy we really are!!

If anyone out there has ever even remotely considered one of these pokey bundle of joys, I highly recommend reading up first!!  A great source of information is Millermeade Farm's Hedgehog Headquarters
Before taking in any new 'fid'(furry, feathered, finny, or otherwise fabulous kid), please make sure you can provide them a forever home.  

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Hey, I've Got Worms!!!

No really, I do and I’m even proud of it!  No.... my dear doxies have not given me some critter that makes me want to scoot my butt across the carpet, I am starting a new adventure in composting – vermicomposting.  I have been trying to compost the old fashioned way, with a bin behind the shed, but I am impatient, and forgetful, so that little project so far has been a bust.  I started reading an article on Pinterest about composting with worms and the idea appealed to me.  The little buggars are quick and efficient, don’t smell, they can take up as little or as much room as you want them to, there is very little labor required (on my part anyway, they do all the hard work).  And really, they are kinda cute little guys too

Before diving right in (which I have a terrible tendency to do) I did my homework.  One of the best resources I have found so far is from a great page called Red Worm Composting.  The owner, Bentley Christie, does a great job of taking his readers by the hand and walking them through every faction of composting with worms, and he has a great sense of humor too!  Ok, homework done, I was ready to start my new adventure.  Thankfully Kim was on board too, although I’m sure in the back of her mind she thought this was just another way for me to add another ‘unique’ critter to our collection! 

Sunday morning over a cup of coffee I jumped onto my mostest favorite online ordering source and took the plunge.  Ordering everything was a breeze.  In the battle between my laziness and frugality, laziness won out this time and I purchased a 3 tray Worm Factory.  You can expand it with more trays but for our household I’m not sure that will be necessary.  Now for the worms…  seriously, is there anything you CAN’T order on Amazon???  There were a few suppliers out there but I decided on 1000 red wigglers from Uncle Jim's Worm Farm.   

Now the worst part…waiting.  Remember, I am impatient.   Being able to track packages online is a pretty cool thing, and it is perfectly understandable that I would go out and check the tracking a few times a day starting Monday morning – after all, it is summertime and I needed to know when my new little wormy friends were going to arrive…..  Wouldn’t want the poor things to suffer any heat exhaustion.  Right??  Yeah. 

Now, today is Wednesday and guess what… they are here.  Woo hoo!  The worms arrived by priority mail and I was a bit worried.  You would think that if a package says “Live Product – Perishable” they would take a little better care of it. 

After taking some good natured teasing from my mail carrier about ordering worms thru the mail when I could just dig them up in the yard, I brought my little bundle inside, and held my breath while I opened the battered box.  Thankfully, the good folks at Uncle Jim’s know what they are doing and all the little guys seemed to be doing just fine.  I put them and their peat mix in a big bowl and covered them with some wet paper to rest and re-hydrate while I got to work on their new Casa de Wormville.  

Bowl o'worms

Putting together the Worm Factory was a breeze, even with the help of Tig Tig (so tempting to lure her into the box and ship her off to Abu Dhabi…LOL)  I set up their bedding which was a mixture of wet coir and a shredded paper/cardboard combination all provided with the Worm Factory.  I added a bundle of yummies that I had collected over the previous couple of days (coffee grounds, corn husks, half of a tired cuke, some pellets generously donated by Widget the wonder rabbit, a handful of stale crackers, and whatever else I could scrounge). 
Appetizing, huh
Then I tucked in the squirmy little fellas and set them off to the side of the kitchen where they can work in peace.  The instructions say to leave them be for a few days, but I can’t guarantee I won’t take just a little peek (yeah, yeah, you know, I’m impatient). 

As I sit here in the living room writing this, I can hear something coming from the kitchen.  Could it be….an ever so quiet refrain of “Hi Ho, Hi Ho, it’s off to work we go”?????

Friday, July 26, 2013

Just a quick Friday funny for anyone who happens to wander by.  I love these little guys, you cant help but smile when you see the Minions!!

           Hope you all have a wonderful weekend!   k

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Summer here and it is HOT!

Hey gang, can you believe we are already over half way through July? Not only that but I started this blog back in January (with the best intentions of regular posts) and this will only be my third post!!  All I can say is that life kind of got in the way, but on the bright side I have some great topics for future writing. 
    HOT  ....  HOT  .... HOT

All over the country we seem to be experiencing some serious heat.  Here in SW Idaho, we have been having multiple days in the hundreds, even peaked out at 114 one day in my backyard..ugh!!!   Like so many other people in our valley, the central AC in my house was not rated for temps that high and especially not for weeks in a row.  The poor thing has been working itself to death and I have the power bill to prove it.  I have been trying to figure out a way to keep myself and my critters cool and save a little energy while I’m at it when it dawned on me that all I needed to do was go back to the basics.

Not that long ago I was watching one of my many favorite programs on the Science Channel and they were talking about the early days of air conditioning and the principles of convection. (I am such a geek LOVE shows like that!)  I suddenly had a Gru “light bulb” moment (thank you Despicable Me).   Here is what is helping me get thru this combination of hot summer days and my own personal pre-menopausal power surges. 

Get yourself a metal colander

a bowl that it will sit nicely in

lots of ice 

and a fan.  I have this little number that I got at my local box mart store for around $17 

the rest I of course had sitting around the house.  

Fill your colander with ice, set it inside the bowl and sit the whole she-bang in front of the fan.  If you are me, set the fan on super turbo setting!!  Wham bam thank you simple technology ... instant cool.  To add even more to the experience, put a few drops of your favorite EO (essential oil) or EO blend on the ice.  Dual purpose there baby, coolness AND diffusion! Genius, I know, right??? 

Here are a few of my favorite EO choices:

Peppermint and Wild Orange:  So refreshing and an energy booster too!
Lemon, Lavender, and Peppermint:  Fantastic blend for allergy sufferers.
Lavender: great for overall calming effect.

Of course, you can use any EO that tickles your fancy. Whatever works for you works!

Oh, if you are like me and suffering from the cranky, sweaty, I’m too young for this hot flash blues, jump over to this page from one of my favorite bloggers, Rebecca from Camp Wander.  Awesome advice delivered with an even better sense of humor.  I just love this woman (and her sisters!!)

Guess that’s about it for now.  I promise, it won’t be another seven months until I post again. Maybe just six and a half.  

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

So, I started a blog....

What is it going to be about you ask.....good question!!  Do I have an answer - not really.  I have so many interests and passions that sometimes I think I'm going to explode if I can't find a place to store them all. My Pinterest boards are overflowing and my sticky notes are abundant.

Let's see, I love animals and own a veritable ark of assorted critters.  I'm all about healing myself and my fids (feathered, furry, finned kids) holistically and am always studying up on the subject.  My newest passion is the use of essential oils and I have found some awesome blogs along the way.  Hopefully with their permission I can re-post some of the awesome information they have to offer.  I'm not the most creative person, but thanks to the internet I can be vicariously creative through others.

What can be expected from this blog?  Idiot proof crafts and cooking, caring for all kinds of critters, small space semi-urban gardening, going "sort of" green, being fit and healthy without being fanatical, lots of how-to's (I'm a very handy kind of gal), and anything else that pops into this crazy head of mine.

Buckle up my friends, this is going to be one interesting ride!

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Under Construction....

More to come - stay tuned :)