Taking care of colds and flu's quickly and naturally! I promise.

Maybe some of you know that Caden was sick a few weeks ago and I cured him naturally without taking him to the dr. I am still pretty proud of myself. I ordered some herbs with a friend and decided I would make my own elderberry syrup. Its cheaper and I can add what I want to it. Thought I would share the recipe and the ins and outs of it all. xoxo enjoy!
Lets start with
"What is an Elderberry?"
Great question!
Elderberries contain organic pigments, tannin, amino acids, carotenoids, flavonoids, sugar, rutin, viburnic acid, vitaman A and B and a large amount of vitamin C. They are also mildly laxative, a diuretic, and diaphoretic. Flavonoids, including quercetin, are believed to account for the therapeutic actions of the elderberry flowers and berries. According to test Elderberry's are powerful antioxidants and protect cells against damage. Elderberries were listed in the CRC Handbook of Medicinal Herbs as early as 1985, and are listed in the 2000 Mosby's Nursing Drug reference for colds, flu, yeast infections, nasal and chest congestion, and hay fever. In Israel, Hasassah's Oncology Lab has determined that elderberry stimulates the body's immune system and they are treating cancer and AIDS patients with it. The wide range of medical benefits (from flu and colds to debilitating asthma, diabetes, and weight loss) is probably due to the enhancement of each individual's immune system.
I know right! Who knew?
This stuff is powerful and it doesn't have the nasty reactions as most drugs. I also am in favor of anything that is God given.
So here we go.
Here are the herbs. They are from Bulk Herb Store and they have had pretty much anything I have looked up. If not, they have an option where you can sign up to be notified when they are back in stock. LOVE that option.
This is the mixture. The colors are so beautiful.
Brought to a boil and then simmered uncovered for 20-30 minutes.
 After its done cooking you strain the mixture through cheese cloth. SQUEEZE that juice out!

Add some raw honey...and there you go! Its the best flu syrup you can get! promise!

Here is the recipe:

1/4 cup dried Elderberries
2 Tablespoons dried Rose Hips
2 Tablespoons dried Echinacea
3/4 Teaspoon dried ginger root
1 cinnamon stick
1 Cup filtered water
1/2 cup local raw honey.

Bring first six ingredients to a boil, then let herbs simmer uncovered for 20-30 minutes. The water will reduce by half. Pour mixture through a mesh strainer or cheese cloth. Press the mixture to squeeze juice out. Discard the herbs. Let syrup cool until you can touch it. Then add honey.

Note: for children younger than 1 year, honey isn't recommended. You can substitute maple syrup or agave nectar.

Dosage: Children take 1-2 tsp a day. Adults take 1-4 tsp a day.


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Menu Planning.

In order for me to feel like I am a good mom and wife I try and cook dinner every night. (because we think we have to eat every night.) Seems pretty simple. WRONG. Maybe I am the only one that has this issue, but just like going to the store, my brain comes up short when it is time for dinner. Unless it is screaming at me or it is planned, I really have no idea what we are having for dinner. Then I am lost. When this happens we have cereal for dinner...True Story.
When I decided to stay home I needed an easy way to plan for dinners, without it taking me hours upon hours to plan. --It has taken me up to 5 hours to meal plan before--I over complicate EVERYTHING.

So I made a template.
Tuesday--Toss it!
Oh the possibilities are endless, however, this gives me a great foundation to meal plan. Also its helpful so I don't have pasta three times in one week, or chicken more than one time a week. Gives me variety and is easy if I have to make a run to the grocery store without a list.
 (I don't recommend it)
This was brilliant on my part. I don't have many brilliant moments, but I think this one is my favorite.
Here are a few printables I use to help me out.


These are not my originals. They have the owners name on them. These are just the ones I use. xoxo enjoy.

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That darn list!

Yesterday we had company and I had to run to the store and get a few things for dinner. Nothing fancy just spaghetti. I didn't have Caden so I knew I had this...without the list.

--The lies I tell myself--
First stop. I thought I did great. Until I started driving off and making dinner in my head and thought "CRAP I forgot the spaghetti noodles!!" So the entire time on the way to the next store I said.. "spaghetti, spaghetti, spaghetti-Don't forget the spaghetti!"
I even attempted to write it on my hand while I was driving. I didn't feel safe doing that and driving so I just told myself. "I wont forget"
I arrive at my next destination. I don't know what it is about getting to the store and forgetting your name. Seriously. Is it the overwhelming task of finding what you need? Finding what you came for? Or not wanting to be seen by those you possibly may know? OR is it that you spend way to much time looking at the lady with the tight pants on, wondering how she squeezed into the size 3 jeggings when she CLEARLY was a size 22....no idea. Maybe it is all of it. But how does one forget the spaghetti TWICE and then not remember until you are half way home? "I wont forget it"
What WAS suppose to be a 30 minutes trip out of the house turned into an hour! What has happened to my brain? Needless to say I continue to leave the house without a list. WHY!?
Are you one of those list bound people? I wanna hear your story.
I thought I would add my first printable just incase you are like me and NEED one. Its not an original. Give me time. You are welcome.
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Because I haven't heard Herbs have a recall....EVER!

This post isn't about demonizing Dr's or Nurses who spend long hours being away from their families taking care of sick people. This isn't about that. This is about people taking CHARGE of their health. Hang on to your panties, its about to get serious up in here.
I have been reading articles from Dr's who have moved from using traditional medicines to exclusively using herbs. They are getting better results and longer lasting results with LESS side effects than pharmaceutical drugs. True. Why is this not being discussed in our Dr visits?? Dr's make money when you come back. (Personal opinion, sorry its true.)
Are there things that need a SPECIALIST. Yes. Cancer probably is one of those things.
Adam had a back surgery 7 years ago that still bothers him to this day. Shots are an every other year Dr appointment. Just to tolerate pain. These medicines don't HEAL anything they just numb the pain.
 Pain is your bodies way of telling you something is wrong. Ignoring pain is bad.
Covering pain up. Is worse.
Doing research on herbs that will help Adam with his pain and this is what I have found.
There are three types of pain:
1. Nerve pain
2. Muscle pain
3. Inflammation
Congratulations. You are now a educated.
All three are serious and should be HEALED not covered up. Otherwise you will just continue to reinjure yourself.
So I found these bad boys. There are several ways you can do you herbs.
In a tea. In a tincture. As a glycerin. As an infused oil. or As a capsule.
There is a time to use all of those methods. For Adam this is what I am doing.
Did you know that St Johns Wort actually HEALS nerve damage? It also restores damaged cells. It is also an anti-inflammatory. (amazing herb)
Prickly Ash helps with the shooting and searing pain. They have had cases where the nerve pain wasn't helped AT ALL with pharmaceutical drugs and Prickly Ash took the pain away altogether.
Kava Kava is a very effective remedy for relaxing tension, and it works both on the mind and the muscles. (retail is extremely tense)
Jamaican Dogwood is a very effective and unique remedy for pain.  It has an action on both muscular and nerve pain.
Most of these are in a tincture. Mostly because I don't have time to make a glycerin right now. (Don't worry its coming) I got this so we can test it out for ourselves before I do our own formula. Just like pharmaceutical drugs a "one size fits all" doesn't fit all.
A trip to the Chiropractor is Monday. If your spine is out of whack aint nothing right.
Vitamins are important too. Check and check.
The thing you must understand herbs WONT do the job for your body. They HELP it. Our bodies have become so reliant on pharmaceutical drugs our bodies have forgotten how to fight off everything.
Think of it as welfare if  you must. The less you do for yourself. The more you depend on something or someone else to do it for you. 
Lets me honest. When was the last time you turned on the radio and heard...."Do you know a loved one that has taken St. Johns Wort and died of lung cancer? Call Michael Johnson to see if you qualify for the class action lawsuit." Nope. Not gonna happen.
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No I haven't TOTALLY lost my mind. Yet.

Good morning! Its Wednesday! I am actually looking forward to blogging now that I have a day I have put aside to blog. It doesn't feel so over whelming. Plus it gives me a little time to think about what I am going to blog about. Then if I feel the URGE to write another post...its just a bonus for you. :) I hope you enjoy todays blog. xoxo

I have always considered my way of life "modern" yet "conservative". We are Christian Republicans. Although I do have friends of all walks of life, this is what works best for our family. I WASNT about "alternative" medicines and thought my "organic" friends had LOST THEIR MINDS! How can food be bad. Its a French Fry. How bad can it really be? Then I met Jaclyn. She calls herself a "crunchie" mom. I thought that was funny. Then we started talking about Oils and Herbs and the things that work for her family. Not sure why, but I was like "That makes sense! Why have I not thought about that?" Then the pinnacle in the relationship happened when I watched Food INC.  My life as I knew it...would never be the same.

There are several turning points in a persons life where they can't turn back. Where a chapter ends and another begins. No matter how hard you try you wont ever be the same. That for me was when I watched Food INC. It was that serious for me.

I belong to this private group on Facebook called "Moms Helping Moms". Its a group where moms can come together and ask questions about just life and we all give advice and encouragement. Its been such a blessing. Its private so we feel comfortable asking questions with people they know. ANYWAY. There are a lot of moms on there that are "Crunchie" and talk about natural remedies with oils and herbs. I jumped on the ban wagon. YES I DID! One that has been the topic of discussion has been Elderberry Syrup. (no not for pancakes) Its flu and cold season.

Caden got sick at church when a mother decided to bring her two daughters to church with a cough and nasty runny noses. Caden caught it. SHOCKER! So instead of taking him to the Dr I decided to do the "Crunchie" mom way and test it out. (keeping in mind I know where my Dr is if I can't fight it myself and knowing where I feel my boundaries ARE. After all I am THE MOM and I know when that point is.) After a week of just being slightly ill. We are 100% over the flu. No sign of a cough, a fever and or a runny nose. Seriously. AND what is even BETTER about all of this. The next time Caden comes into contact with something with someone who is sick, he will have a stronger immune system to help fight it off FASTER and BETTER than last time. Keep in mind. ALL prescriptions have about 100 side effects. Deciding whether to take them and get better and deal with what comes along with the side effects OR do the natural way and not deal with the side effects. That's all I am saying. Do you research. Do what is best for you! Here is what we used.

The Herbs
My grandmother was all about Herbs. Especially Horehound. We all thought she was crazy. Until I looked up this herb for myself. Horehound if you have mucus is THE single most important thing you need. I am not kidding. It makes your cough PRODUCTIVE. Who wants to cough to just cough? If I am going to cough I want to get the crap out! Well this stuff helps do that. I went through an entire bottle of this stuff in a week. Everything Caden drank had this stuff in it.
Got this from our local health store. It is very yummy. It is not your imagination when you use this and 10-15 minutes later they feel better. You do have to use it often. That's the only down fall with herbs. However I think that is a great downfall. No side effects.
This stuff is POWERFUL. I will be making my own next time and adding a few things that are better like Echinacea. Echinacea is like the natural antibiotic! I am super excited about making my own. I will blog about it later PROMISE.
Essential oil
No its NOT doTerra or Young Living. I had this from when I was pregnant with Caden. I put him in the bath twice a day with Epsom salts and let it pull the poison out of his body and the eucalyptus helped with his breathing. This is going to sound strange but the water was always a dingy color when we emptied it. I really feel like the Epsom salt was doing a good job.
I am not sure I will ever have a specific "Brand" I stick with.
The Big Guns.
I have always used the Hyland's brand. We started using it with Caden when he started teething and well. I am a believer. So anything they put out I give a try and if it works for Caden I keep it on hand always.

 Don't let the night time fool you. This didn't make Caden "Sleepy it has a calming effect that made him peaceful. The sleepy time medicines usually WIRE him to the max. This didn't do that. Helped with the cough also. I sometimes gave it to him during the day. I found that it helped day and night with out him being groggy.

Oh sweet mother! This stuff was my favorite! Speaks for itself! Love it.

And I have been looking for Vitamin C tablets and finally found some. Thank you Hylands for being consistent. HOWEVER Caden wont eat these. I have to sneak them into his juice. We went a little overboard on Vitamin C. Your body doesn't store it and if you get to much...it gets tossed out. So bulk up baby!
I know that seems like a lot, and it was really a small pharmacy on my counter top, but you know what he was a champ and told me when it was time for more medicine. He knew it worked for him and knew he felt better when he took it. I am a believer. Children don't lie. They can't by nature unless they are taught.
Look forward to more posts about natural things we will be doing around here.
Thanks for reading. Tell me what you think.

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