Goodbye bad dreams…here comes the sweet dream spray

So, since my daughter has turned four two months ago, her imagination seems to be running wild. Even when she isn’t having bad dreams, she thinks she is because she works herself up thinking about them! So, since she is four, and will believe almost anything if I can sell it the right way, I decided to make some magic sweet dream spray. I told her that it is a magical spray that if you spray it before you go to bed that it will help give you sweet dreams. I put it in a special green bottle that the fairies made green because she has a green leaf in her room (like the ones from ikea that make a canopy over your bed). She really goes to town with the spraying…its quite funny actually. She knows that if she wakes up in the middle of the night, she can spray it more…as much as she wants. Even if it helps for a few months…I’ll take it!

Sweet dream spray (or whatever you want to call it)

  • special spray bottle
  • lavender essential oil
  • distilled water

Basically, fill bottle with water and add a few drops of oil. You need to shake it good before using but that is easy to learn. Lavender is used to help relax and calm a busy body…which most children have. I used to have a pillow spray from Bath and Body Works that I loved but since I’ve gone green, this is a wonderful alternative.

Natural room disinfectant spray

Since I run a dayhome and I am fairly crunchy…I do not like exposing children to more than their little bodies can handle. They get enough toxic exposure as it is. I also hate germs. My family is lucky, we are rarely hit with major illness but when they hit, they hit hard. The other kids however come with many germs, bugs and lingering flu illnesses. I used to use the lysol room spray…a lot! But I didn’t want them to breathe it in (I didn’t want to either!) so I needed to find an alternative. I have used essential oils since I was a teenager so I know how powerful they can be. Lately I have heard a lot about thieves oil blends so I wanted to see what the hoopla was all about. After a lot of research, I found that it can be a few different takes on essential oil blends. The blends are made to reduce illness, mold, infections, kill germs…etc. All good things. So, since I don’t have time to get to my local health food store during the week, I used what I had on hand and made up my own version on a room disinfectant spray.

Natural Room Disinfectant Spray

  • very good quality spray bottle with misting nozzle
  • distilled water
  • essentials oils (see blend options below)

I used a large spray bottle since I use this stuff a few times a day when flu and cold season is here(ie, stressful times of the year). I added about 3 cups of water to approx 100-150 drops of oil (total). My first batch was with only rosemary. My second batch was with rosemary and eucalyptus. Just remember to really give it a shake before using!

Essential Oil Options

  1. Rosemary alone
  2. Rosemary and eucalyptus about 50/50
  3. Rosemary, eucalyptus and lemon oil 30/30/40
  4. Thieves blend (you can make your own or use pre-bought ones) **NOTE** I have not used this and I do know that if it contains clove bud oil, that it can actually dissolve plastic and eventually glass…so if you are going to use this, make sure bottle is glass and make small amounts to be used up faster) You can also get room essential oil disperses which may be a better option

The latin names for the oils are lemon (Citrus limon), eucalyptus (Eucalyptus radiata), rosemary (Rosemarinus officinalis).

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Making your own magnesium “oil”

Most of us have a magnesium deficiency whether we know it or not. We used to get our magnesium from our soil and water, however we have been depleting those, as well as other trace minerals, for a long time now. There are ways for us to get these very important trace elements back into our bodies so our systems can function the way they were intended…to heal themselves.

One way we can get magnesium is to take supplements. Magnesium glycinate is a very good form to take but also very expensive and not to mention another freakin’ pill to take! You can purchase various warm drinks such as Natural Calm which work well and can be very relaxing before bed (because they are warm). You can take daily baths in magnesium chloride flakes, however the amount needed for each bath would be outrageous on your budget…think $20+ a day!! And you can buy magnesium chloride spray but again…the expense is huge for the tiny amount. The cheapest and easiest way though is to make your own “oil” or spray. I have recently made my own and it was easy, made a ton and will be used for the whole family. It is also a much faster way to get magnesium into a 4 year old who sometimes doesn’t want to drink ALL of her bedtime “tea.”

What you need

  • Magnesium chloride flakes (yes an expensive purchase, but it will last you forever!)
  • distilled water
  • either a glass spray bottle or an eye dropper bottle
  • stainless steel pot
  • glass mason jar (sized to hold remaining oil)

All you need to do is measure equal amounts of water and magnesium flakes into a pot and heat on quite low until they are dissolved completely. Stir it occasionally to help it along. Let it cool and put into well labeled and dated bottles. Distilled water is very important because it helps to keep your “oil” from going rancid and it shouldn’t cost you more than $2 for a huge bottle at the grocery store.

A spray bottle will probably be easier for application but I didn’t want to go and buy something just to make this so I used an old medicine dropper bottle and stored the rest in an old glass vitamin bottle. I didn’t want to make too much because I was not sure how long it would take us to go through it so I only used 1/2 cup of each.

As for application, you can put it anywhere you want. Remember…start with a small amount and work up. High doses can cause diarrhea and who wants that in the middle of the night! If you do get loose bowels, cut your dose back a bit until you don’t. That would be your ideal amount. I would recommend using it at bed time as it does help with a more restful sleep and I have read that for people with very sensitive skin, do not use right after a bath or shower and also try applying it only to lower back. There are also reports of some people having a tingling sensation for the first week or so of using it. It does go away.

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Window and Glass cleaner

For a really long time I looked for a good window spray/glass cleaner. I have been using this for over a year now and will never buy premade stuff again. I found one and for the life of me cannot find where I got it from. I apologize to whomever posted this recipe. I wrote it down at the time on an index card, never to find the website again. Story of my life…I always find amazing trinkets on the web and then I am distracted by life and don’t save the link.

Ah well…

Window washing spray/Glass cleaner

Good spray bottle(like an old glass cleaner one)
1/4 cup white vinegar
1/4 cup rubbing alcohol
1 T cornstarch
2 cups warm water

All you do is fill the bottle with the ingredients and shake. You must remember to shake it good each time you need to use the cleaner because the cornstarch settles to the bottom. This is the first homemade version that doesn’t streak. I use paper towels to wipe it off with but if you have old newsprint, use that. It leaves it much shinier. Now… you will need to do a good bit of rubbing to make it streak free but it is worth it. I find I don’t need to clearn my mirrors as much for some reason too.

***Please remember to label all bottles clearly and keep out of reach of children***

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Foaming Hand Soap

So. I love smells! I love Bath and Body Works soaps…problem is they all contain triclosan. Now, triclosan is a sneaky ingredient in almost all health and beauty supplies and it is suspected to interfere with hormones and harmful to fish and wildlife (yet we wash it down the drain every day not to mention applying it to our body!). Now…I do not want to take that chance so I make my own … maybe not as amazing smelling but they do their job. For many, many less pennies!

Foaming Hand Soap

old foaming hand soap bottles
dr. bronners liquid soap (any kind)
*OPT tea tree essential oil – to make antibacterial/viral soap

I literally once a month, go around the house and fill each bottle with about 2-3 TBSP of liquid soap, 4 drops of tea tree oil and then fill with tap water.
I shake it up really good and that is it.

Things to make you think

I have been compiling loads of information and the more I come across the more disturbed I am. I just wish I had a solution other than to blog about it. I was going to write a blog post for each article with my thoughts and opinions but I was getting to angry with what I was finding so other than the Monsanto post I blogged about this am, which deserved it’s own post, here are some very informative and eye opening articles. This should keep you reading for a while!!

Aspartame in Milk

Pharmaceutical companies

The toxins in meat

Podcast about raising Paleo/Bulletproof babies

Stop ‘shoulding’ yourself

great sugar addiction photo from Paleohacks.com

Egg standards…british/USA

fluorecent lights

Laundry soap…should I bother?

So my battle with laundry detergent began after I began using cloth diapers with my daughter. My eyes were opened to what they really contained. Once she was potty trained, our family was in the middle of moving cities, finding new jobs (and not finding them) which was very stressful. SO…  I resorted to the good ol’ standby of my favorite smelling Gain. I have never used fabric softener or dryer sheets…just the good old dryer balls.  While I loved the smell, I knew that it was not good for us or our clothing.

Once my head was on straight, I bought Claudia’s Choices detergent that is good for sensitive skin and cloth diapers as well as clothing. I recently was down to the last few scoops so I decided to being looking up laundry soap recipes…ones that were a bit more environmentally friendly as well as budget friendly. I would have kept using it but at $35/bucket I wanted to save money. I visited probably 50 sites with all varying recipes tweaking here or there. One recipe that I kept coming back to was from “how she does it“. I liked that it made a huge batch, that others were happy with it and that is mostly good products. I decided to make a half batch, just in case. I am glad I did because then I started researching Borax. Now…what you must know is that Borax and boric acid are different things.  Borax is the salt from boric acid (sodium borate) and is an alkaline mineral. It is naturally occurring in nature but even then it can be harmful and should be stored away from pets and animals. Borax is considered an effective, versatile and affordable eco friendly product when compared to petroleum based products. It must be handled carefully.

What I found was that the Skin Deep Database (which is not always reliable) lists it as a 5-6 moderate hazard…but the studies it is based on are hard to find. I am sure if it is ingested it would not be a good thing, however the MSDS(material data sheet) lists it as a hazard 1, same as baking soda and salt. I would not want to ingest it as the FDA banned it as a food additive. The debate seems to be ongoing and not close to being solved.  It is non-carcinogenic but a mild skin irritant and may potentially disrupt the reproductive system(however studies have not been done on humans). So…who knows.

Here was my original recipe, based on “how she does it” blog.

  •  ¼ box of Borax
  • ½ box of Washing Soda
  • 1/3 box of Lg. oxyclean
  • 1 bar of grated Dr. Bronners soap
  • 2 lbs of Baking Soda

Here is how I tweaked it to reduce borax content and adjust it for our very hard water and after I researched more about Borax.

  • ¼ box of Borax
  • 1 box of Washing Soda
  • 1/3 box of Lg. oxyclean
  • 2 bars of grated super fine Dr. Bronners soap
  • 2 lbs of Baking Soda

*you can add sent boosters in you like. They are not fabric softeners so they will not coat the clothing.

For both I use 1-2 T per load, a bit less if you have an HE washer.

One thing I have learned is that when using this in warm/hot temperatures with Borax, it is activated as hydrogen peroxide…a bleaching agent. I learned this the hard way after some of my colors and darks were fading. SO…as long as you wash colors and darks in cold, no issues! Apparently, oxyclean can also cause fading but I have not found that in the small amount in each scoop that it does.

For my next batch I will continue to tweak things…I will add another bar of soap and probably no borax or oxyclean. I will add a bit of oxy if I need it to my individual loads.

 

Hope you give it a try!