Thursday, September 10, 2009

Who Ya Gonna Call - Flubusters

I'm beginning to realize that unless I take charge of my health now, a pharmaceutical company will later. I don't want to be one of those prancing people on the television telling me that if I take their pill I will be happy and independently wealthy and have a great haircut. Unless of course I end up with one of the many side effects that will make me violently ill, cause me to grow a second nose on my forehead which may become congested and might cause me to die.
No, want to use the healing properties that my Creator instilled in my body and the various flora and fauna that He placed on earth to do more than just look pretty and smell good.
Our environment and our lifestyles are killing us and we are like the frog in the pot of water allowing the slow boil to cook us without even realizing it.
We work hard and play hard, never taking a day of rest to replenish our souls and bodies. We eat stuff that has been tested and tweaked so it will look nice in the store and be pleasing to our eyes. We put products on our bodies with ingredients that we also use to maintain our cars.
Oh yeah ... ahem... back to the natural path.
I am discovering that I can make and use natural, stuff from the earth products to keep healthy. Most if not all I give credit to my daughter in law who has taught me to take my health seriously. After all I ain't getting any younger and every peep in a mirror reminds me of that.
Last week I began to sense that dreaded "back to school" cold coming on.  This one made my throat scratchy. After playing the, " it's just allergies" mind game I came to my senses and realized I needed to do battle hard and fast. My arsenal consisted of  Vitamin C, oil of oregano and elderberry tincture. A large mug of ginger tea became my gun. Three times a day for two days downing the concoction and I'm out of harms way.
Elderberry tincture is easy and inexpensive to make.
Allow me to give you a short lesson so you too can take control of cold and flu season before it takes over you and your family.
This is everything you will need to begin making the tincture.
I get my elderberries at a health food store in bulk. First step is throwing the berries in a measuring cup. Two ounces of berries equals approximately one third cup. For enough tincture to last through cold and flu season, I would suggest 6 ounces of berries.
Next measure out an equal part of vodka. 1/3rd cup of elderberries to 1/3rd cup vodka. You want a high alcohol volume which pulls out the property of the berries and preserves the tincture. I use the cheapest vodka available.
Combine berries and vodka in a clean jar and place in a dark area ( I use my kitchen towel drawer). Give it a shake every day to mix the ingredients.Don't worry if you miss a day. You just want to keep the berries from settling on the bottom. The tincture is ready within 3 months, but the longer it steeps the stronger it will be. By 6 months it has reached it's complete strength level.  When the steeping process is done, strain off the berries. I use a small coffee filter within a strainer and let it drain into a spouted measuring cup.
Pour elderberry tincture into a dark colored bottle. It's now ready to use.
I use 25 to 30 drops in a large cup of hot tea morning, noon and night on day one. You can also mix it in cold tea or juice.

Friday, September 4, 2009

The Fair and Traditions

Summer is just about over. It's been a good summer really. Not too hot and just enough lazy days thrown into the busy ones.
Now the air is getting heavier and the trees are just beginning to show their fall colors. The comic pages feature kids going back to school.  Yes winter is not far away.
But no summer should go away without the tradition of ... The State Fair...
I have been going to the fair since I was a little girl back in the old days. The food concessions were manned by families and churches. Rides were a quarter and you could get little green lizards for fifty cents that you pinned to your shirt. Mine by the way lived many years and we named him Mr Peepers.
Times have changed, food is fried and the only things you can pin to your shirt are all the buttons that advertise.
My children grew up at the fair too. We started taking them when they were months old. First they were pushed in a stroller, then we had to work our schedules around school and friends and jobs. And now the strollers hold grand babies. 
Everything is different but nothing has changed.
Every year we hear, "the fair isn't as good as last year". But every year we find that magical moment that makes us happy we went and ready to do it again next year.
So maybe it isn't the cold $8.50 combo Chinese plate dinner, or the 99 degree concrete. Maybe we can do without watching one more person barking while under hypnosis or the 5 minute firework show at 10pm.
Just maybe it's watching kids squeal with delight on the balloon ride. Perhaps its taking the time away from reality to stroll hand in hand with that special someone through the flower gardens. Or knowing tomorrow it's back to salads while eating  fried Twinkies.
We all need traditions. Traditions are good. They keep us on task, give us hope. They help us through the craziness of our changing world.
Soon enough we'll be eating soup and living in sweaters. But today we will see brand new baby calves while we munch away on cotton candy.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Just finished this book earlier this evening. As far as I'm concerned it is a must read for both Jews and Christians.
Benyamin decides he has lost the spark of his Judaism and is going through the motions of his faith without the life. And so he begins a year long adventure into the world of Christianity to see how the "other half" live, hoping it will jump start his own path with G~d and back to his life as a Jew. He visits all kinds of churches and events. And through it all he does rekindle the flame of his faith. I won't tell you more - read the book for yourself.
It's easy to not see the forest for the trees. Easy to fall into the rhythm of religion without even stopping to see how it effects others, how it effects oneself.
But as Benyamin steps back he sees the good, the bad and the ugly about Judaism as a religion. And as he examines Christianity, the same can be said.
Both Jews and Christians can do things because they were brought up doing those things. But why?
How many of us have stepped outside for a moment and looked through the window? Watched what takes place from an outsider's point of view? Would someone look at us as we worship and think we had a screw loose? Could we explain why we do what we do? Would they look at us and wonder why we even bother going through the motions because there is no life?
Those who are Jews can spout tractates and laws with gusto. Those who are Christians can tick off scripture verses and cliches without batting an eye. And yet those watching us from the sidelines either walk away in disgust or amusement. Or they are drawn closer.
In reading this book I have come to realize (oh I knew it before really) that the "other side" is indeed watching. Would they want to venture to my side because what they see is genuine? Could they watch me for awhile and see that it's for real, not something that I put on and take off depending on the moment?
As a Christian - would a year with Moses rekindle your love for Jesus?
As a Jew - would a year with Jesus draw you closer to the G~d of your Fathers?

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Best Get Busy Here

I've had this blog since August and as you can see it ain't much to look at. So I best get busy and share my mind. This won't take long.
It's a beautiful spring day - er- winter day. The trees are confused because it has been pushing 70 degrees for a week now. As much as I like spring and all, I miss the gloomy foggy, rainy days of January. I've made hats and scarves in so many colors and I want to wear them. I like my crockpots of soups and stews. I want winter. Let's hear it for winter.

I guess the kids from Hawaii who are playing in the Inaugural Parade this next week are having a really hard time. You see it has been in the teens in Washington DC. Most of those kids probably have never worn a coat in their lives and now they have to keep moving so they won't get frost bite. I wonder if any have had their lips stick to their horns yet. Now that would be a bummer.