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The cold has once again reared it’s ugly head at our house and I am trying to find ways to make those who have been afflicted feel more comfortable.. Having grown up in Germany I have learned that there is much value in a combination of homeopathic and allopathic medicines. I am always trying to find more natural products to help sooth and heal minor aliments (though I am by no means against Tylenol, or cold and flu medication) .

Here are a few teas that can be very helpful.

Ginger Tea – This tea has long been used in the treatment of  vomiting and motion sickness. Ginger is also known to help lower cholesterol and works as a blood thinner. It is also a good source of vitamin C, vitamin B6, magnesium, and potassium, if the tea is made with real ginger. Eating a little ginger each day will also help boost your immune system.

Chamomile Tea – Chamomile can be taken as a tea, or used externally. Chamomile is often used for: soothing skin rashes, controlling insomnia, soothing mouth sores, relieve stress, promoting general relaxation and even help calm a colic baby. It can be woman’s best friend because it can reduce menstrual cramps and alleviate nausea during pregnancy.

Rooibos Tea –  It comes from a red bush in South Africa, and is also also known as Red Tea. It  is used for healing skin rashes, relieving nervous tension, irritability, headaches and insomnia. Rooibos Tea contains many  minerals including alpha-hydroxy known for leaving skin smooth and healthy. Because of its high mineral content, Rooibos Tea is also good for your teeth and bones as well as your metabolism. In some a health food stores, you may find it called Allergy Tea, because of its effectiveness in treating seasonal allergies.

Peppermint Tea – Peppermint has menthol in it which helps ease diarrhea, headaches and upset stomach. It helps clears congestion and cough related to colds and allergies and Peppermint also contains B vitamins, calcium, and potassium.

Green Tea – Green it is sometimes referred to as natures “wonder drug”. Studies have shown that people who drink green tea on a regular basis have a much lower risk of cancer because if it’s important antioxidants. It is also said that it helps prevent tooth decay, dementia, hearth disease and can help lower cholesterol and raise metabolism.

Chamomile and Green teas are my favorite and ones I have given to my children often.  I always wonder what people did hundreds of years ago, before Advil, Tums, Excedrin and other meds that we now take for granted. I am sure they had some soothing secrets that have sadly been forgotten over the years.

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Snowflake Pumpkins

Here is a cute little fall craft for young ones. Instead of cutting out snowflakes from paper, use the same technique to make paper pumpkins.

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Go to this website, Mer Mag, to get directions and see other pumpkin cutouts.

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Pies on a Stick

Here is a fun way to eat pies. Make your favorite pie only make them much smaller and before you bake them stick a pop sickle stick in them. Then bake and enjoy.  I bet the kids (and husbands) would get a kick out of it. I wonder if this would work with something more healthy …. hmmm…. I will have to think about that.

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Discipleship in the Home

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Resurgence has a great two part article called “Discipleship starts at home”. Check it out. It is always good to be reminded of the spiritual responsibilities we have towards our children. We have tried to do this at our home and here are some of the resources we have used.

Music

Seeds Family Worship CDs (personally I like the Seeds of Faith CD best)
To Be Like Jesus (Sovereign Grace)
Awesome God (Sovereign Grace)

Bible Teaching and Bibles

Truth and Grace Memory books (Children’s Catechism) by Tom Ascol
The Jesus Storybook Bible
by Sally Lloyd Jones
The Children’s Story Bible by Katherine Voss
Leading Little Ones to God by Marian Schooland

Stories

Conduct for the Crayon World by Edna Gerstner
Take Care In The Bath by Jim Cromarty (This is a collection of short stories that teach Biblical truths)
How God Stopped the Pirates by Joel Beeke and Diana Kleyn (these are devotional stories – there are a number of these books)

A great web resource is Ray Van Neste’s blog called The Children’s Hour . Dr. Van Neste is Associate Professor of Christian Studies and Director of the R.C. Ryan Center for Biblical Studies at Union University. He has 6 kids of his own and in this blog he reviews books for children. Check it out, you may also come across the occasional book for parents. This is an excellent resource!!

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Smokey Mountain Vacation

We just got back from our vacation to beautiful Gatlingburg, TN. We drove down in 2 days and spent the night in Louisville, KY.  Before we got back on the road we made a stop at Southern Seminary and showed the kids where we spent the first few years of our marriage.  What great memories.

In Gatlinburg we stayed in a great little cabin and spent the week relaxing, sight seeing, and eating out (my favorite). All 3 of the kids were great and had a lot of fun hanging out in the hot tub, riding go carts with Joe, exploring the “up side down house”, going on an aerial tram ride over the Smokies,  and swimming in the pool.

We were sad when it as time to leave, but we were also glad to get back home and sleep in our own beds.  Here is a video Joe put together about our time in Tennessee.

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Slime Time

Making Sime

My kids love to do crafts. I, on the other hand, not so much. I think it is because I have grown tired of making things out of paper, paper plates and toilet paper rolls.  Since my kids love to keep everything they make, space is becoming limited. So we tried something new.  We made slime.  It was actually pretty simple, the kids loved it and no toilet paper rolls or paper plates were used. The best thing is you can keep it in a baggie in your fridge until it dries out or grows mold. One of the ingredients is Borax.  I bought my mine at Walmart in the laundry section for under $3.00. (You can also make your own laundry detergent with Borax, but we will save that for another craft day).

Blue Slime

Here is the recipe

Borax
White Glue
Water
Food Coloring (optional)
Ziploc bag

1. Borax is available in the laundry section of your local grocery store. Take a cup of water and add to it 1 Tbs. of borax (approx 4% solution). Stir until completely dissolved.
2. Make a 50% water 50% white glue solution. Take 1/4 cup of water and a 1/4 cup of glue and mix thoroughly.
3. In a ziploc bag, add equal parts of the borax solution to equal parts of the glue solution. 1/2 cup of each will make a cup of slime.
4. Add a couple drops of food coloring.
5. Seal bag and knead the mixture for a while.
6. Dig in and have fun. Remember to wash your hands after playing.
7. Keep your slime in the sealed bag in the refrigerator when not playing with it to keep it longer. Unfortunately it may eventually dry out or grow mold. Just throw it out and start again!

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Welcome

This is going to be a place where I jot down a few thought on subjects that I feel passionate about. I decided to start blogging as a way to remember things that happen in my life and the life of my family. I view it as a digital diary of sorts. I am also bogging as a way to keep my very spread out family and friends informed as to what goes on around here. Perhaps I an even be an encouragement to others out there. So welcome and enjoy.

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