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Sunday, May 30, 2010

The Task At Hand...

sorting photos. A million of them. Or so it seems. :) Here are a few of my favorites from the last month or so.


Gardenia branches

Easter Lily

Banana Tree

Tuesday, May 11, 2010


My husband said goodbye, put his earbuds in his ears, put his helmet on and went out to his bike to go to work. I was doing important things- like checking Facebook. :) Before I knew it he was honking from the driveway. Repeatedly. I got up to see why he was honking. He pointed down to the driveway and there I saw a visitor... of the reptilian sort.

The kids really enjoyed seeing a turtle. I moved him to the backyard so I could put him (her?) near the bayou which is a more fitting habitat for such critters than a cement driveway. :) Now if I were only saavy enough with Blogger to intersperse pics and words how and where I want them. ~sigh~

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Of Lavender and Peppermint

A few days ago my 5yo daughter (dd for short) came to me with what appeared to be a significant headache. She was crying and clearly in pain. It seemed to me that it came on suddenly, but she told me it had been hurting for a bit. I think it being near bedtime and her being tired exacerbated it. My first inclination was to give her a dose of Motrin, which I did, yet it was no easy task as she resists liquid medicines. A few minutes later as dd lay on the couch emitting random crys of pain it occurred to me that perhaps an essential oil concoction might help her. I pulled out my book (The Complete Book of Essential Oils & Aromatherapy by Valerie Ann Worwood) and turned to the section on headaches. I selected the "General Headache" recipe to try. I mixed 3 drops of lavender oil, 1 drop of peppermint oil, and about 1 drop of coconut oil. (The book called for a drop of vegetable oil, but I substituted coconut instead.) I massaged it on her temples and at the base of her skull at the hairline as the book directed. I did not massage for long as she was not fond of it. The results made me take notice. Within 5 minutes she was obviously feeling better. The whining from discomfort had stopped. I put her to bed as it was her bedtime, but very soon thereafter she came out looking for her baby doll. Any signs of a headache and discomfort were ... gone. In my experience, Motrin does not work that quickly.

I have used the combination of oils also found in the book to relieve a migraine headache that was accompanied by intestinal discomfort. I had recalled reading about a 'gastric headache' that Worwood attributes to eating the wrong foods and decided to try the book's suggestion. My sweet husband helped me out as I was rather incapacitated. He mixed 1 drop of peppermint oil with a teaspoon of honey in warm water and brought it to me to sip. He then mixed 1 drop of Rosemary, 2 drops of Peppermint, and 1 drop of Lavender together and put a drop or two of the mixture on a tissue for me to inhale. (The book calls for inhaling 1 drop on a tissue, or massaging back of the neck with 1 drop, or putting 3 drops in a steam inhaler.) Within 30 minutes I was almost totally back to normal. It sure beat letting the migraine run it's course!

I have used lavender oil myself recently to relieve skin irritation and burns from cooking. The book by Worwood tells of a chemist(I think a perfume maker) who burned himself in the lab and immersed his hand in lavender oil as it was the only liquid close by. He thus discovered that lavender oil aids in the healing of burns.

Another thing that aids in the healing of burns is Xango- a supplement I have taken for years. It's a juice one can take internally, or apply externally. It's a fabulous anti-inflammatory. I have not used it much externally except for my son's acne (amazing results especially when combined with ingesting it) and burns. Earlier this week I decided to test it out on my foot. Feet, actually.
I have different issues going on with each foot- but the root of both I believe to be inflammation. ( I have a suspected neuroma in one foot and pain and tightening from the heel to inside of my arch on the other.) I have been massaging my feet and experimenting with placing a cotton ball soaked with Xango on the inflamed parts of my foot once or twice a day while sitting. I have been very surprised at the results. I have noticed a rather dramatic improvement in how my feet feel immediately after I'm finished sitting and letting the Xango soak in as compared to when I first sat down.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Inner Workings

It has been a whirlwind week here. I've not gone anywhere, really. I've pretty much only gone shopping for necessities- like food. The children kept saying there was nothing to eat around these parts, so I decided to humor them. :)

I have spent the week organizing my abode. It has been kind of odd- in a nice way. :) The odd part comes in the fact that I'm not going through things as I'm packing boxes and preparing for a move. Packing boxes has been my stand-by way of organizing/thinning out items. You see - our family's move into this house was our 15th move in 15 years- all averaged out. I could like not moving. :) In a few months we'll have lived here longer than we've lived anywhere since we've been married. We've been married for nearly 18 years.

My foray into all crevices of the house began with an innocuous event. Free bunk beds. I like free. I really like free. What a blessing and an answer to prayer! They were immediately designated for the boys room as it is the smaller of the 2 children's rooms. But- work had to be done. To set up the bunks I had to remove the mattress our 7yo was sleeping on and the captains bed our 17yo has had for eons. The captain's bed moved to the girl's room for our 14 yo as we needed more drawer space for the girls...and as an extra blessing to me- dd cannot shove all manner of things (or anything!) under her bed. :) This thrills me to no end!

So the captain's bed moved to the girls room. Mine and my husband's dressers moved to the boys room, and we were able to ditch the inefficient dresser our 7yo had. (I loved the old dresser/desk combo- but I loved it much more before ds took a scalpel from older ds's dissection kit to it. ~sigh~ ) My dh had the brilliant idea to give the boys our dressers and buy ourselves dressers we liked and that better reflected our taste. Since I was dealing with beds and clothing in the boys room and mine- I decided why stop there? I moved onto the cabinet where the boys store all manner of personal items. After measuring the boys cabinet I took a trip to Wal-Mart and found plastic storage bins (that all matched in lid color and shape!) to allow for more efficient storage compared to the few bins they already had. I made sure to buy bins that all have hinged lids so the lids could always be found. :) I love the results!

Getting things organized and cleaned out in the boys room was such a treat I decided- why stop there? On I went to the 3 hall closets, the 2 entry closets, and all of the kitchen drawers. Somewhere in the midst of this I also organized every.single book we have. Replacing the dressers in my room necessitated the removal of a bookcase (Yay! More clutter banished!) in order for the new dressers to fit. I had to order new curriculum for next year for the younger children which required space ...and all the books were a disaster anyways.

And then... then there was the matter my desk. ~sigh~ It took 2 days- but it is now cleaner and more organized than it's been since the baby (who is now 1.5 yo) arrived. I feel invigorated! A cluttered house and desk make for a cluttered mind. I'm beginning to think I was more 'snowed under' with the arrival of our 5th child than I realized. The fog is beginning to lift! I see sunshine peeking through! And it's lovely. :)