Wednesday, January 30, 2013

January 2013 Card Class - 1 of 4

January started with new card classes...and I was happy to get back into routine, I really enjoy card class night. We make four different cards once a month.

First up to show you is a cute "Get Well" card.

We used the bandaid stamp out of the Patterned Occasions stamp set, which isnt for sale, it is offered as a free set with a $50 order in the sale-a-bration I better make an order before March 22 because this stamp is adorable, along with the other 4 stamps in the set.


Monday, January 28, 2013

Soap Studio Update

We are painted and ready to move did a storm which hindered moving day, so it is on hold another week....but it is painted and ready to move in, YAY!

I went with the same green in our store, I just love this color (as you can tell by the blog background as well) and I find it very calming and soothing.

This is the view from the inside out...the doorway on the right is the remainder of the garage and where all the containers and things not needing temperature control will be housed.

The door to the left leads to a small room which will be the office and card making room...and the big white spot that looks like was forgotten in painting...will be my homemade chalkboard wall. Being the wall is right within walking space, you really cant have shelves there...I know for me I would bump into them every single it makes a perfect space for a chalkboard for orders and notes. The Hubs is going to frame it in and paint with chalkboard paint.
The room is coming together and I am very excited!!

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Herbal Tea and Citrus'd Honey

The Hubs woke up one morning this week sick, sicker than I have ever seen in our 24 years together, this bug going around is a nasty one!! So with that said I wanted to try some of the natural remedys I blogged about earlier this week. So on my way home from work I stopped off at my local health food store and armed myself with supplies...

I bought Oranges, Lemons and an array of herbs and spices. First up I prepared the lemon ginger honey. I sliced my lemons and plucked out the seeds...

I layered them in the jar, sprinkled 1/4 tsp of ginger over them and filled the jar half way with honey and stirred...I have to say while stirring I started to wish that I had just mixed the honey and ginger in a bowl and then poured over...but too far in now, so after stirring I layered more lemons and topped the jar off with honey and stirred some more...Yummy honey from our local honeyman, MMM!
I could have added more lemons, I ended up with 1-1/2 lemons in a jam sized jar, but I wanted enough honey to enjoy, but I could have fit the other half lemon in. Now off to the fridge it goes...

I put the other half of the lemons in a cup with honey to use now.

Now for the tea. I bought Peppermint, Echinacea, Lemon Balm, Wild Cherry Bark, Licorice and Mullein. I measured a teaspoon of each one and put in a pan, then I added water and simmered on the stove for it to steep.

I strained it through a coffee filter and then we enjoyed our tea.

The Hubs really liked it, for me I have to say it was too sweet. I was not prepared for it to taste so sweet, and The Hubs even added his citrus honey on top of the already sweetness.
So now I am on a quest to find out which of those added sweetness. For men and kids it probably is a good thing as it helps them drink it since it tastes good...but I am different and enjoy something more herbal.
The end results were some yummy honey to enjoy in our tea, the next day The Hubs was back to himself and feeling really good...was it my "witch craft" as he likes to call it? Could be, I know it didnt hurt. I will be making these to keep on hand for future use. I also want to try the Elderberry recipe, but the health food store was that can be a future post. :)

Stay well everyone!


Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Fighting Cold and Flu the Natural Way

There is a lot of sickness going around right now, it is hard to stay well when everyone around you is coughing. I am doing my best to stay well by washing my hands frequently, using Lysol on common items at work such as the keyboard, phone and door knobs, and most importantly making sure I have fruits and vegetables in my daily diet to get the important vitamins and minerals needed to stay well. If you do find yourself becoming sick, I have gathered a few natural remedies I have found online for those like me that don’t like going to the doctor and taking medicines we seem to just become immune to. I have not tried these, so be sure to keep your allergies in mind when trying something new, and also do not give honey to children under a year old.

So what are some good natural items to help fight colds and flu?

Not on the list, but something I have been seeing a lot lately is onions....

Onions may have the ability to relieve symptoms of the common flu. Ancient Ayurvedic and Chinese medicine revered onions for their anti-viral, anti-inflammatory and congestion-relieving properties. Onions are even placed in sickrooms as it is thought to absorb germs by placing a dish of sliced onions in the room, and replacing with fresh when they become discolored. I haven't tried this, but I do find it interesting and just may give it a try. You can read more about it at the Global Healing Center.

Next in my searching was something I hadn't heard of before...elderberries. They are said to have the ability to reduce both the severity of your symptoms as well as the duration of your sickness by almost half.
Elderberries...which are related to the Honeysuckle family...are little purple berries that grow on shrubs and are indigenous to the United States. They contain a flavonoid called anthocyanin...which is a natural antioxidant found in plants...and is a powerful immune-booster.
You can read more about elderberries over at Kelly the Kitchen Kop where she also gives you a recipe to make elderberry syrup.

Over at Seasoned Homemaker she shows you in detail how to make a flu tonic. 
 I have to say I don’t know if I could get myself to drink this, but I think The Hubs would like it since he loves all the ingredients needed to make it…horseradish and hot peppers…sounds a bit hot for me, so I would have to think about this one, but I bet it would knock what ails ya right on out.

Now these recipes over at The Yummy Life are something I can drink, and have in the past made something similar. My grandma always said there wasn’t a germ that could live in a lemon, so every morning she squeezed us a fresh lemon for us to drink down first thing, followed by a cup of water….every morning. And when we had a cough my mom always made a honey and lemon syrup to keep on the stove to sip on throughout the day to keep our throats soothed and coated.
 The Yummy Life gives you 5 easy no cook recipes to soothe your throat. Honey has antimicrobial and antioxidant properties and can fight bacteria. Combine it with citrus’, herbs, and spices, and you've got a wonderful tasty natural remedy to ease cold and flu symptoms.

diyNatural has a great looking recipe to make your own basic cold and flu tea blend.   

 The tea includes:

Echinacea which is known for its ability to prevent or help the body fight colds and the flu.
Elderberry which is a powerful flu fighter with its anti-viral, anti-inflammatory, and immune stimulating effects. 
Lemon Balm A member of the mint family that works against a variety of viruses and bacteria, and its anti-inflammatory properties also make it perfect for soothing headaches.
Peppermint which has menthol and can improve nasal congestion and relax airways.

A jar of the tea blend and a jar of citrus honey would make a great gift for a sick friend.

What is your favorite natural remedy?