Thursday, February 25, 2010

earache, coughing, scaring & cuts

#1 The ear.
Any kind of earache can be the first signs of infection and that means howling pain for poor baby, and sleepless nights and tons of coffee for you.
Take some sesame oil you can use olive but the properties in sesame for some reason work better, heat it up (however you like) in the meantime crush up a couple of cloves of garlic and add to the oil, don't cook the garlic but let the oil & garlic both infuse for a couple of minutes, actually really mince the oil & garlic together.

Strain out the garlic, a tea strainer, muslin or sieve will do. Let the garlic oil cool down to warm and then use a syringe to drip into the ear, its best to have them lay on your lap so it can drain all the way in. This actually is very soothing to the child and feels really good.
let it sit there for as long as the child lets you and then just let it drain out. The garlic contains a really powerful natural antibiotic which slightly numbs the pain whilst healing the infection.

This worked straight away with our kids but it may take a couple tries to get rid of a bad infection. I do want to stress this is not a replacement for a doctor so if the infections last for days, please go and see your GP!

#2 Coughing.
VICKS vapor rub on the feet.
Put a thick layer on the soles of the feet and then put socks over to keep it on. Works like a charm (on my kids at least) it also works great for adults too... kind of stinky but better than that chesty cough all night long!

#3 Scars, cuts & Burns
This is a great remedy for all of these things. Just get some (organic in a glass jar) honey and apply to the afflicted area. Honey again has amazing healing properties and works wonders! It contains an enzyme that produces disinfecting hydrogen peroxide when it comes in contact with blood. It also reduces swelling and forms a protective barrier over wounds to speed up healing. More than 500 clinical trials confirm honey's healing properties and its unlikelihood of causing an allergic reaction.

**Please use common sense when it comes to natural methods and see a doctor if any of the above maladies are extreme.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

It's Raining, It's Pouring...Your kids say it's Boring

I'm not organized enough to get my tips together yet, but here's one from this little free e-book I got "100 Activities to Keep Your Kids Happy". If you're interested in it email me and I'll send you it. This tip is for rainy days, suggestions to keep kids entertained...Let me know if you're brave enough to try painting a door!

"This little list of rainy day parenting tips, ought to help you through the wet weather.

°Bake – bake freezable healthy treats such as muffins, slices, and snack bars. Children love to help measure and pour, and especially lick the beaters. PLUS the oven warms up the house!

°Make a puppet theatre from a big cardboard carton, and hand puppets from socks and odds and ends. Sell “tickets” and host a show

°Paper Mache Bowls – make a paper Mache paste, from flour and water, and drape strips of paper over balloons. Let them set for 24 hours, and decorate. They make good fun bowls for playing.

°Plaster Boots – Messy, but creative... get your hands on some plaster ban- dages, and cover an old boot – decorate. It makes a fabulous door stop.

°Paint. Paint a glass door, it wipes straight off. (Use water based poster paints of course)

°Give in, get wet, don the gumboots and go jump in puddles!

°Make warm cocoa with marshmallows!

°Make a family book, using a scrapbook and family photos

°Get your children to organise your photo albums

°Make a cubby house

°Involve them in writing your meal plan"

Friday, February 19, 2010

Recipe: Pasta Fagioli Soup

Shana says: Pasta Fagioli Soup is super super fast, very healthy and a family favorite.

Pasta Fagioli Soup

This Italian soup derives its name—fagioli—and its high fiber content from kidney beans. Serve with crusty Italian bread and a Caesar salad for a quick weeknight supper.

12 ounces Aidelle's chicken or turkey sausage, halved lengthwise and sliced
5 cups fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth
1 cup uncooked small seashell pasta
4 cups coarsely chopped zucchini (about 4 small zucchini)
1 (14.5-ounce) can stewed tomatoes, undrained
1 teaspoon dried basil
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 (15-ounce) can kidney beans, rinsed and drained
1/3 cup (about 1 1/2 ounces) shredded Asiago cheese (optional)

Heat a large saucepan over high heat. Add sausage; cook 2 minutes, stirring constantly. Add broth and pasta; bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 4 minutes. Add zucchini and tomatoes; bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 2 minutes. Stir in basil, oregano, and beans; cover and simmer for 3 minutes or until pasta and zucchini are tender. Sprinkle with cheese.

Shana A.

Tip #1: Shana's Laundry Tip

My tip is for not letting laundry pile up which is a vicious cycle
because once it's out of control who has the mental energy
or time to tackle it, right?

So I bought at Kmart (although sometimes you can find them
at the dollar store too) some of those net laundry bags that
fold down super small when not in use. The style I found are
short and lay flat which worked best for me instead of the
tall thin ones. Now what I do is as soon as a hamper is full
for us or the kids I start a load of laundry washing even if I don't
have time to see the whole process through. Later on when it's
convenient I throw it in the dryer. Then once it's dry I put it
in one of the net bags.

If I don't have time to fold it the net bag gets put back on top
of the dryer. Some other time when I have five minutes I'll
fold that load and put it back in the same net bag. Then it
might migrate to outside the door to the room it belongs
in especially if there's a sleeping baby inside. Then later
inside the room etc. Eventually it will make its way to a shelf
or something equally organized ;-)

By breaking up my laundry into a bunch of manageable simple
steps that never take much time I assure that I won't end up
with weeks of laundry that I might be motivated to miss service
to catch up with.

Shana A.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Recipe #1: Easy Yummy Salmon

My kids are really picky and you would think they wouldn't eat this, but they gobble it down! Really yummy and a snap to make. I half the recipe for my family.

Asian Grilled Salmon


* 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
* 3 tablespoons good soy sauce
* 6 tablespoons good olive oil
* 1/2 teaspoon minced garlic
* 1 side fresh salmon, boned but skin on (about 3 pounds)

While the grill is heating (I use a stovetop grill), lay the salmon skin side down on a cutting board and cut it crosswise into 4 equal pieces. Whisk together the mustard, soy sauce, olive oil, and garlic in a small bowl. Drizzle half of the marinade onto the salmon and allow it to sit for 10 minutes.

Place the salmon skin side down on the hot grill; discard the marinade the fish was sitting in. Grill for 4 to 5 minutes, depending on the thickness of the fish. Turn carefully with a wide spatula and grill for another 4 to 5 minutes. The salmon will be slightly raw in the center, but don't worry; it will keep cooking as it sits.

Transfer the fish to a flat plate, skin side down, and spoon the reserved marinade on top. Allow the fish to rest for 10 minutes. Remove the skin and serve warm, at room temperature, or chilled.

Sheila T.

Struggling Housewives Club

So we all need a few tips to get through the day, so let's band together and get those tips rolling in!

Cheap date night!

Going on a cheap date tonight! It pays to go on the weeknight...
(Babysitting, Free, with Nanna & Grandpa. Printed out a Golden Ticket for the kids to use, so they have some printed tickets too!)
Going to dinner at Thea Mediterranean, using our $25 gift certificate (bought for $6). Also made reservations through, and this is a 1000 point reservation (2,000 points gets you a $20 gift certificate to the restaurant you choose). Both of these are eligible Sunday - Thursday!
Also, movie at 7:00 (Avatar 3D), using the Fandango gift card I got by writing reviews on Viewpoints! Afterward, dessert at Ben & Jerrys. Using the Free scoop we got by signing up for Ben & Jerry's Chunk Mail.
Stretch your entertainment dollars!