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6 Herbal Remedies for Cold and Flu Season

Herbal remedies for cold and flus

It seems like every year the cold and flu season gets more and more intense. And every year, you get the flu shot being shoved in your face harder and harder.

Is anyone else tired of feeling like you have no control over this situation?

I know I am.

So, let’s go over six herbal remedies to help us fight back with confidence and gain control over our own life. Shall we.

I think first and foremost we shall discuss…

Essential oils.

These little bad boys are the foundation to all things in our house. We use them daily. When it comes to an ailment, it’s no doubt that they are the first thing that pops in our heads as a solution. Especially for colds and flus. Let’s break down some oils.

Oregano: This is a must when you start to feel anything come on. Oregano has incredible immune boosting properties that help fight off feelings of colds and flus with in the first symptom if caught early enough. It has a chemical component called carvacrol, which is a monoterpenoid phenol. This phenol contains antioxidant properties that provide your body with an army to help fight off any seasonal threats. 

To use:

You can add 1-2 drops in a veggie capsule, 1-3 times a day. Or if you are feeling brave and want to grow some hair on your chest, you can put those drops right under your tongue. But believe me, from experience, do the veggie capsule. Or you can also put 1-2 drops in a tea. But again, oregano is a powerful oils with a powerful taste. 

Onguard: This oil helps protect against seasonal threats and provides your body’s system with enough strength to stay healthy and stable. This oil is a must have. It is a beautiful blend of Wild Orange Peel, Clove Bud, Cinnamon Leaf, Cinnamon Bark, Eucalyptus Leaf, and Rosemary Leaf/Flower. 

To use:

You can put 1-2 drops in a veggie capsule and take 1-2 times daily. Or simply add to your diffuser, 3-4 drops can be enough to cleanse the air. You can rub on the bottoms of your, or your kids, feet. ***Be sure to use a carrier oil when putting oil directly on your skin. Carrier oils can be, fractionated coconut oil, almond oil, regular coconut oil or even olive oil. You just want another fatty oil to help protect your skin. 

Breathe: Oh mama, this oil will maintain feelings of a healthy clear chest and nasal cavity. This oil contains a delicate blend of Laurel Leaf, Eucalyptus Leaf, Peppermint Plant, Melaleuca Leaf, Lemon Peel, Cardamom Seed, Ravintsara Leaf, Ravensara Leaf. 

To use:

Simply diffuse in your diffuser. You can also rub on your chest, neck, and bottoms of feet. ***Remember to use a carrier oil. ***Do not take this oil internally.

Black seed Oil

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This is not your basic essential oil in traditional form. Black seed oil is derived from Nigella Sativa, a common flower found in parts of Asia. This oil is the mother of all oils. It has such powerful healing properties that it should be taken daily twice a day to maintain overall health. For more details on black seed oil head on over here.

We take this daily, however, we will up the ante if one of us gets any symptoms. I will vouch for this stuff protecting me against the stomach flu. Let me tell y’all a little story…

The last two years, both kids had the stomach flu….AT THE SAME TIME, EACH YEAR. This mama was downing black seed oil like none other. And I never got the stomach flu. This year, however, when my son got it, I followed my same routine and survived. But then my daughter got it a few weeks later and I skipped the black seed oil on the second day of her being sick. Because I was like, “Oh I am sure I’ll be fine.” And…..BAM

I was down for the count in the worst way possible. 

Never again y’all, never again, will I skip out on my black seed oil. I use this stuff when I have stomach issues, heart burn, anxiety… it is absolutely incredible. You can find it on Amazon. 

***Full disclosure, it tastes like diesel oil but I swear you get used to it and it actually starts to taste good, don’t judge me. You can get the capsules, but more times than not, they add stuff to their capsules to keep preserved or it is diluted. We would rather down something that tastes like diesel oil and know it is in its purest form than to question what else is in it. That’s just us.

To use:

Take 2 teaspoons daily for maintenance. Add an extra dose if you feel something coming on or want to avoid a seasonal threat. 

Elderberry

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Again, elderberry is just one of those incredible medicinal herbs that provides your immune system with this insane army to fight off evil. 

Elderberry comes from the European Elder tree. They are these tiny little dark purple berries that NEED to be cooked down to be consumed. ***Elderberries are known to be “possibly unsafe” to eat raw. So be sure when making your own syrup you use caution and knowledge to keep you and your family safe. (1)

This is one of those medicinal herbs that is a powerhouse for ALL sorts of things. From cold and flu to cancer. When taken at the first sign of a symptom, it can cut the duration of a cold or flu by four days. That is insane. 

For more in-depth detail about elderberry join me here my friend. If y’all want to make your own syrup follow me here. Or, wanna make elderberry gummies? And lastly, if making it doesn’t tickle your fancy, no problem homie, this is the brand we use when life gets to busy and we gotta buy it. 

To use:

For adults, take 2 teaspoons daily for maintenance or 2 teaspoons up to 4 times a day when fighting off something. For children, give 1 teaspoon daily for maintenance or 1 teaspoon up to 4 times a day when fighting something. 

Nasal Rinse

Nasal rinses can be extremely beneficial for upper respiratory issues, congestion, colds, allergies. It is used to help support these conditions by cleansing our nasal cavity of unwanted toxins. Nasal rinses can also be used to help protect against sinus infections by using a saline solution with the proper salt concentration of 2-3.5%. (2)

To use:

Buy your self a neti pot or nasal squeeze bottle. Usually these come with a saline that has the proper concentration. We dig on the squeeze bottle, it’s just easier for us to use. Follow the directions on the package for best results. 

Here is a gnarly nasal rinse solution recipe, head on over here and check this one out. This is the mamba of all rinse solutions that works insanely well. 

 

Real Flu Shot

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This is the kind of flu shot y’all want to be taking. It is jam packed with intense, beautiful ingredients that will provide your immune system with a kick in the ass to get back into gear. 

This shot is filled with garlic, ginger, honey, lemon, water, and cayenne pepper.

Did you cringe a little? Don’t…

It is intense but dude, I guarantee that if y’all do this flu shot you’ll thank me in the morning. This bad boy knocks all the bad stuff out of your system because the bad stuff cannot survive with all this goodness in your body.

Head on over here for full recipe.

To use:

Take immediately when you feel a symptom come on up to two times a day.  

Tea

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Doesn’t tea just make everything better?

Especially if it is jam packed with mother natures goodness. This tea is just absolutely beautiful. It contains all sorts of incredible medicinal herbs and the properties they contain help your body relax, giving it the ability to heal itself. 

Head on over here for our tea recipe. 

To use:

Brew up a beautiful batch, cozy up and sip while reading your favorite book. 

That’s it y’all. Use one of these remedies, use them all, it is up to you. We use them all in some sort of fashion, most of the time. It just feels good to arm your body with the proper weapons to help heal itself. 

Are you gonna try a remedy? We’d love to know which one you tried and how it worked for you. Leave a comment below. 

Happy healing!

Post contains affiliate links. This means if you purchase a product through the link we provide, we receive a small commission at no additional cost to you. Thanks for your support. 

 

 

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Incredibly Easy DIY Fruit Roll Ups

Kombucha Style.

So, you have made a crap ton of kombucha and now you have found yourself with a crap ton of SCOBYs. 

Don’t you worry homie, I’ve got a fun super easy solution to this “problem.” If we can even call it a problem because I mean, come on, SCOBYs are your friend. We want them around but not a crap ton, right?!

Am I right!

Today we are making some fruit roll ups, Kombucha style. This is a perfect way to put all those SCOBYs to work, all the while putting a smile on your kid’s face. 

Or yours, I am not here to judge.

Y’all ready to make some deliciousness?

What y’all need:

2 cups Kombucha SCOBY

1 cup Kombucha tea

3 cups organic frozen or fresh fruit

1/4 organic cane sugar

Parchment paper

dehydrator or an oven, whatever

What y’all want to do is:

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Take your SCOBY out, using gloves or extremely clean hands. We don’t want to taint all of those beautiful SCOBYs left behind. Cut it up into chunks and throw in a blender.

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Add your tea to the blender. And blend like a mofo.

Once you got that all nice a smooth. In a sauce pan add your fruit and sugar. Heat just enough to release those natural sugars and until a little liquid appears.

Next, throw your fruit in the blender with your SCOBY puree and puree your little heart out again.

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Take your parchment paper and spread a nice layer of your SCOBY/fruit puree. If you spread to thin, your roll up will be brittle. If you spread to thick, your roll up will not roll like it should! Like I said, a nice layer! An 1/8 of an inch, if you will. 

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Place your parchment paper on your dehydrator racks and let dehydrate for about 12-18 hours. Or until your roll ups are nice and tacky but not gooey. 

I know, I am extremely precise. 

If y’all are using an oven, same concept. Turn your oven on the lowest setting and allow to bake until you achieve that tacky not gooey texture. 

Now, how easy was that?! 

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Oh, and if you have some left over but not enough to make another layer, make some popsicles with it. Another delicious treat for the kiddos. I got these popsicle molds from amazon and love them. They are small, the perfect size for an after dinner treat for the kids.

Don’t let those SCOBYs go to waste y’all. 

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And……they LOVED them!!

Happy fruit roll up making!

If you have no idea what Kombucha is and want to check it out, head on over here. And if you want to get started with a SCOBY to start making your own Kombucha tea, we’ve got you covered there too. 

Got questions? We want to hear them! Leave a comment below.

 

 

 

 

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Preserving Purple Pole Beans

The time finally came.

We canned our beautiful purple pole beans y’all.

And they came out perfect.

Purple pole beans are so much fun to grow. They are these perfect little beans that are the most gorgeous shade of purple. Give them an upright fence to grow on and boom son, no huge planter space taken up. This year, we planted them along this old ladder we had just sitting on the side of the house. We plopped the ladder in the middle of the garden and planted seeds that we harvested last year and we couldn’t believe how happy these little plants were.

This whole gardening thing is pretty incredible. Especially when you have the pleasure of utilizing your very own harvest to replenish the garden over and over again.

My husband and I have a deal. He grows our food and I make sure it gets to our table in some form or another.

He grew us some beautiful purple pole beans. And so….

I canned those beautiful purple pole beans.

Here is how I did it.

Well first off, lets talk about a few important things. When canning foods that have little to no acidity, you need to use a pressure canner to can. This ensures that all bacteria that can cause severe illnesses are killed in the process and what you have left over is safe pure food.

Beans fall into the little to no acidity category. So, for this adventure we are using our All American Pressure Canner. Wanna take a side note with me?

Ahhh I knew you’d say yes….

Which canner to use.

I did a ton of research on pressure canners before I made this investment. I landed on the All American Canner  because of a few reasons.

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  • These canners do not require gaskets. So there is nothing you have to continuously purchase. Only requirement is that you lube the edge of the lid with coconut or olive oil before each canning session.
  • These canners are built in the USA and are made to LAST, your great grand-kids could benefit from this investment.
  • They offer multiple sizes for your canning needs. Making it incredibly efficient if canning is your main source of storing food or if you just want to occasionally can at times. I invested in the middle of the road canner, model number 921. On the website I states that it holds 19 pint size jars and 7 quart size jars. What I have found is that I am only able to can 12 pint size jars. Or 6 quarts. It does state under the specs that quantity of jars may vary depending on jar brand.

I gotta to say that this last batch of canning I did, I wanted to make it count so, I canned 12 quart size pinto beans and 6 pint size black beans and I was really wishing I have invested in the bigger size available.

BUT…. I made it work and I’m still in love with my canner. Every time I bring it out, I have this feeling of confidence. This feeling of self-sufficiency. This feeling of, F-yea!

Lastly, I also love the weight on this pressure canner as well. It is incredibly easy to use and it gives you full control over your pounds per pressure.

So if you have been going back and forth on what canner to how with, I highly suggest you research the All American Canner and take the plunge.

Small disclosure, I am not affiliated with Pleasant Hill Grain, the company who makes this canner. I just have experienced their superior product and don’t mind dancing on roof tops and yelling, “I LOVE THIS CANNER…….” Because I LOVE THIS CANNER! I am, however, affiliated with amazon and that is the link I provided you. So, if you decide to take the plunge, would you be so kind as to purchase through the link I provided. There is no additional cost to you and it helps us out tremendously.

Ok….

Back to canning beans? You got it!

Oh, if you are new to the whole canning food thing, head on over here to read about all the equipment you need to get started.

And, if you want to check out the quick reference list before you get started, head on over here.

Canning Pole Beans

What y’all want to do is:

First off, get all your equipment and utensils ready. Use your quick reference list I gave you. And then get a cutie to help you pick those beautiful beans from the garden.

Canning purple pole beans

  • Fill your pressure canner up with about 2-3 inches of hot water. Using hot water helps heat the water when on the stove.
  • While your canner is heating up, fill a big pot with filtered water, enough to fill all jars. ***Heat more water than you think, the last thing you want is to not have enough water in the middle of your session.
  • While both pots are reaching their boil. Rinse your pole beans. Break the ends off if necessary. Then break into half inch pieces. Place in a bowl.
  • If you used your quick reference list, you should already have a bowl set aside with your lids in it. If this is true, you just earned yourself a star, yo! If it’s not and you just had to scrabble around to get yourself a bowl, I say, USE YOUR LIST! It’s time to fill your bowl with some hot water from your pot. This step is important, it heats up the seal on the lid allowing it to properly seal onto the jars during the canning process.
  • Fill up desired size jars with your beans.

Canning Purple Pole Beans

  • Add 1/4 teaspoon of salt, this step is completely optional. It only adds to the taste.

Canning Purple Pole Beans

  • Using your funnel, fill jars up with boiling water. Leave about a 1/4 inch of head space at the top of your jar. Use your “knife” utensil and remove any air bubbles that may be present.
  • Use your paper towel dip it in some clean water, or vinegar and wipe the rim of each jar. This is also important because it removes any debris that may have gotten onto the lid. If debris is left on the rim and you put your lid on, there is a great chance that your lid won’t seal properly.
  • Using your magnetic lid lifter, place lids onto your jars. Place the rings on top of the lid and only tighten finger tight. Don’t over tighten. Air still needs to be able to escape.
  • Use your tongs and place jars into canner. *** I am not gonna lie homie, sometimes you’ll come across a jar that will break the moment you place inside your canner. Or even during the canning process. Sometimes you just have a faulty jar. So just be prepared.
  • Place your canner lid on and tighten knobs. Tighten knobs opposite of each other. This ensures that the lid is evenly tightened.
  • DON’T PUT YOUR WEIGHT ON YET. Allow the canner to reach the proper temperature. You will know it’s time to put the weight on when you hear steam releasing from the steam valve for a stead FULL 10 minutes.

Canning purple pole beans

  • Once you allowed steam to release for 10 minutes, place your weight with the correct pounds, usually 10 pounds. Unless your altitude is insane. Now allow the canner to build pressure to the amount of pounds you have on your weight. Once you hit your pounds, turn heat down just a tad. I mean, just a tad. And start your timer. 40 minutes for quart size jars. 20 minutes for pint size jars.
  • Once done, just turn off your canner and set an hour timer. This allows all the pressure to naturally release from the canner. Once the hour is up I usually take my weight off and the last bit of pressure will release. I then wait for about 10 more minutes before I attempt to open the lid. ***Always unscrew the knobs opposite of each other. And open the lid away from your face.
  • Using your tongs, take jars out of canner and place on your towel that you already had prepared because you used your quick reference list!
  • Leave jars alone for a full 24 hours.

Canning purple pole beans

  • I only hope you get to hear the sweet sound of the PING. That sound tells you,  spending all day in the kitchen like a 50’s house wife, was all worth it!

Canning purple pole beans

  • After 24 hours, remove rings from jars. I like to hold my jar by the lid, gently, just to make sure all my lids are actually sealed. ***You may notice some water spots, no biggy, just spray some vinegar on a paper towel and wipe clean. Don’t forget to label and date!

That is it my friends. It may seem like a lot but in reality it takes about 15 minutes to prep. The time consuming part is waiting for your canner to reach pressure and then decrease in pressure. The best part is that you get to fill your pantry with your own green beans that taste like heaven.

How to use your canned green beans

I love to heat up some oil in a cast iron pan. (We use bacon grease from high quality bacon to cook with.) 

Slice up some sweet onion and throw them in the pan. I like to caramelize the onions before throwing the green beans in. The green beans only need to be heated, not cooked so they take about 5 minutes in the pan. I usually make this side dish at the very end.

Add some salt and pepper.

And the best part, take a few pieces of cooked bacon and cut it up into pieces and sprinkle on top of your green beans.

Y’all, its heaven!

Happy canning! AND eating!

Questions? I wanna to hear ’em! Leave a comment or question down below! Oh and hey, wanna free eBook with some awesome recipes utilizing herbs? Subscribe to our email list yo!

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Homemade Dog Treats

 

Well homemade dog treats is kind of misleading. These dog treats are made out of chicken feet. Wait, let me correct that, they ARE chicken feet. Just dehydrated.

Should I change the title of the post? I mean, they are homemade and they are the perfect treat for dogs.

Ah F it. Homemade dog treats it is.

If y’all didn’t read the last post about our chickens, take a gander. We unfortunately had to get rid of our chickens sooner than expected. These ladies were our first major step towards our homesteading journey and our intention was to love them, allow them to be chickens and then they would provide us with food at the end of their production.

The time had come and even though we tried to chicken out, literally, we stuck to our intention and butchered our first chickens. A more in-depth post on our experience is coming soon I promise. It was nothing like we expected. It was harder than we ever imagined.

But let’s get on with our dog treats shall we. Unfortunately, the only salvageable part of our butchered chickens were their feet. Again, a more in-depth post will come soon.

Their feet, being the only thing we were able to save, were dehydrated and made into perfect dog treats for our pup Angus.

It was super simple to. Ready to hear how to do it?

All you need:

Dehydrator

Chicken feet…….obviously

All you do is:

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  • Soak chicken feet in a bowl of water over night. This helps get all the dirt off their feet.
  • After soaking run under water and scrub feet with a bristle brush. Using soap is not necessary. Be sure to scrub off as much dirt as possible.

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  • Next, you want to clip off their nails.

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  • Bust out that dehydrator of yours and lay the feet on a tray.
  • Now, turn that bad boy on and let it go for about 24-48 hours. Or until they become super crispy. You will know they are ready when you try to bend a toe back and it breaks off without bending. If it bends, even a little, let it keep going. I think ours actually took about 3 days.

***Small tip, plug the dehydrator in the garage if available. Not like the dehydrator is super loud but it can be annoying to listen to after about an hour. In the garage, it’s away doing its bad boy thing.

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That is is y’all. Super easy and your pup gets insanely delicious healthy treats.

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Happy dehydrating!

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DIY Bug and Gnat Spray

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We have a ton of house plants, they just make us happy. So we tend to do a lot of transplanting. And just like anyone else, where do we keep our soil…

Outside of course.

But do you know what happens to soil when it sits outside long enough?

Little tiny gnats like to lay their eggs in the soil.

You know, those damn little fruit fly things that will do anything in their little power to try and fly into your mouth. If you are thinking eww gross, then I guess you have never experienced one of these little bastards.

They multiply faster then you can say, “yoga with goats.” I mean, yoga with goats, I love goats but doing yoga with them….I don’t get it. Oh wait, I was talking about gnats, back to gnats. So, needless to say they can infest a house super fast.

So here is a little story; a while back I redid our bathroom. I was very proud, if I do say so myself. Well, in that little redo, I hung a plant, in an awesome purple pot that just fit the bathroom perfectly but what kind of soil did I use?

You guessed it y’all, soil from outside.

A few weeks later, we were infested. It was so bad that the walls had little tiny gnats everywhere. I was done. I had enough. These little F-ers had to go and they had to go now.

So I did a little research and came up with this gnat spray.

Let’s make some shall we.

Whatcha need is:

Glass spray bottle (plastic works too, whatever floats your boat yo)

White vinegar

Water

Essential oils:

Eucalyptus

Rosemary

Geranium

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Direction:

  • Fill spray bottle with 1 cup of vinegar and 1/4 cup water
  • Add 10 drops of each oil.

Boom Son you’re done!

I mean, how simple is that.

I literally sprayed my entire bathroom. I sprayed the walls, the gnats, the bottom of the pot the plant was in, the rim. I was careful not to actually get the plant, I didn’t want kill it.

But what I also did was I took the plant outside and sprayed it down with our neem oil spray that kills gnats, aphids, and all sorts of other nasty little plant critters. I sprayed this little plant probably about 4-5 times over two days.

We are living gnat free right now people, gnat free. All thanks to this little spray.

Got a Gnat problem? Leave a comment below let me know how it works for you. I’d love to hear from y’all.

Happy gnat killing!