When I was in my late teens and early twenties, I relied on the local public library to feed my insatiable desire for information on self-reliant living. Attainable Sustainable: the Lost Art of Self-Reliant Living by Kris Bordessa was just the type of book I would relish finding, and covet owning.Continue Reading
I love this beautiful soap with a candy-cane swirl. Scented with peppermint essential oil, it is perfect for Christmas gift-giving. The instructions for making this natural, homemade candy cane soap come from Kelly Cable’s new book, The Natural Soap Making Book for Beginners (and is used with the author’s permission).
I’ve been making soap for many years, but I’ve rarely gone beyond the basics. Kelly’s new book inspires me to be more experimental and artistic in my soap making. This candy cane soap was the first I’ve tried using color in my soap, and I love it!Continue Reading
One of the first things a girl needs to know (ok, boys, too) when learning about herbal medicine is to make an herbal infusion. And if the girl has time on her hands, time is all she needs.
But sometimes mullein needs to be quickly infused for an earache. Or plantain for a healing balm. If you don’t have time, you need heat. Not just any heat – gentle heat. The kind of heat you get from a double boiler.Continue Reading
Does something that reminds you of being sick belong in the category ‘Good Memories’? My mom gave us flat ginger ale whenever we were recovering from a bout of stomach flu. It was part of being cared for, and it definitely settled my stomach. So, for me, it’s a memory of comfort.
Yes, we drank soda when we were kids on special occasions, although back then I would choose orange or root beer, rather than ginger ale. I rarely drink store-bought soda these days – but, if I had to choose, it would be ginger ale. I guess my tastes have changed.Continue Reading
Make Your Own Tea Bag
Yes, I have tea balls, and tea spoons, and even a tea sock for straining loose leaf tea. But I was drying mullein leaf to have on hand to ease coughs and congestion. Mullein leaf has really tiny hairs and if not completely strained can cause irritation and make that cough worse.
So I wanted a quick, easy way to make a tea bag that would be sure to strain the tea completely. A tea bag from a coffee filter was just what I needed.Continue Reading
I’ve been making soap for a few years, but have shied away from writing a post on how to make soap because I do not ever make anything more than the most basic recipe.
My main reason for soap making is that I am sensitive to most scents in soaps, including some essential oils. And a scent-free soap like Ivory dries my skin because they remove the glycerine from it, and it’s made from tallow from factory-farmed cows. No thank you.Continue Reading