make feet soother gifts

I have had aching feet for a long time.  I tried many things, and now I know that stretching, shoe inserts and foot soaks are the best remedy.  I like to experiment with making things from natural sources; especially essential oils, but I found that some good, old fashioned ingredients are also helpful.

I work with other women who also are plagued with the aches/pains of aging-&-daily-life. So, I decided to make some feet soak powder for Christmas presents.  I searched the internet and found this was the base recipe to start:  (BUT read on- note that I modified it!)

3/4 cup epsom salts                                                                                                             1/4 to 1/2 cup baking soda

Most of the recipes called forepsom essential oil, but I didn’t want the powdery stuff to glob.  Yet, of course, I wanted it to include some scents and herbs.  I found Lavender and Honey Epsom salt (faithful Calgon-take me away), and purchased a jar of “Village Naturals Therapy” (found at Walmart) concentrated bath soak. There are several scents/herb mixes available, but I picked Eucalyptus, Spearment, Menthol simply because it was green and I figured the green color would be a nice touch for gift effect.

I doubled the recipe in order to make multiple little jars.  I just spooned in what looked like a good mix of green crystals.  There is not a certain recipe, this will be strictly to taste.  Fell free to pick other variations, or just the basic recipe as above with a few drops of you favorite essential oils….and relax!!

footgift

 

Tip for Recovering Addicts #3- Relationships

Relationships are probably the most important thing that can either make or break recovery for addicts. Do you love someone? Do you feel loved? Do you take it for granted? Do you feel taken for granted? These are just basic get-started questions on doing an in-depth look at each aspect of relationships.  If you are in a relationship, thinking it should be a mutual, 50/50 deal, in reality you are each only giving half of yourself.

A relationship is not easily measured. There isn’t a formula for solving the equation. Each person has their own set of standards, wants, needs, expectations, etc. The other person may, or may not be able to, or willing to meet those standards. Then there is the element of time, it changes things- daily, weekly, monthly, year by year. At times, it may seem one is giving 180% and the other is only putting in 20%, then the tides change. It is kind of like a seesaw, one holds more weight briefly than the other, but then it switches, ending up in a swaying rhythm. Ultimately, if each work together, in sync, they can find balance.Keep in mind that there should be balance in: #1- physical health #2- emotional health #3- Relationships #4- Job #5- Social/Community.

Do not underestimate the importance of the priority of your relationship with God.  When life seems painful, where do you turn? Your compatibility with another person should not be in conflict with your relationship with God.  If you are questioning how meaningful your relationship is, you might want to make an honest list of your own wants, desires, needs, but be realistic and consider what you absolutely have to have, then compare it to what you can live without.  Now, do the same thing for the other person. How willing are they to respect your goals, wants, needs? Again, be realistic, keeping in mind the changes that life brings. Be forgiving, you are not perfect, so don’t put too much weight on them to be perfect. When you first meet he/she might have seemed perfect, but to think it will stay that way is nothing more than unrealistic expectations.Bottom line, if you are in recovery, but the other person isn’t, what do you think will eventually happen? If you put conditions on the other person to meet your personal expectations, and they don’t, what do you plan to do about that? (Hint, it’s a pretty sure thing that no other person will be able to meet all your expectations.)

Nobody has the answers to what’s in your heart, except you. I have been married twice, the first time, my husband became more and more involved in his addiction. I knew deep down that it would not work, but it took a lot of encouragement from family, friends and counselor to get me to finally face it and do something about it.

If you have lost relationships during your addiction, because of your addiction, but still truly love that person, great.  Just don’t put too high of expectations on it ever being the same. And never, never blame someone else for what you feel- you own those- like it or not. Repairing relationships take time.

Finally, be open and willing to talk about EVERYTHING with the other person, respect his/her own needs, wants, dreams and goals. Being supported does not mean they do for you, it means they care about what you do and who you become.

I could keep going and going on this subject, but again, every relationship is so unique, it is difficult to ‘keep it simple’. Please, do some soul-searching and put the effort in to make your relationship what it needs to be in order for each person to feel fulfilled.

There are so many types of relationships in all areas of life. Family is the most important as a support for recovery. Seek knowledge and guidance. A really good resource is books, there are so many helpful ones. An example of one for improving communication is

You can find this at Better World Books for $3.98 used and shipping is free!

Tip for Recovering Addicts #1- Physical Health

Physical health is not to be ignored for recovering addicts. Pay attention to your body symptoms and make the effort to maintain good health.

This blog series is NOT about harping on staying clean. You are already in recovery, so staying clean is obvious, but being in good health makes it easier. This is about finding a sustainable way towards a healthy, balanced lifestyle. Whether you are beginning or have been in recovery for awhile, it is important not to neglect 5 important areas of life, which are necessary for balance. This is more than the basic body/mind/spirit idea of balance. I have been successful in recovery for 25 years because I believe in God (I don’t call the omnipotent power ‘higher power’ because God IS God) and I have learned to follow the teachings of Jesus.

Here are 5 areas that need to be in balance independently as well as correspond and overlap with each other.

#1- Physical Health   #2- Emotional Health   #3- Relationships   #4- Job Satisfaction   #5- Community Involvement

First of all- EAT RIGHT!!! That means regular meals at regular intervals. Stay away from junk food and watch the portion size if you need to watch your weight.

If you have a physical condition that requires special diet, you know how important this is.  Fresh foods are always best.  Get natural proteins, vitamins and sources of energy. Here’s one of those tired but true sayings: You are what you eat.

To get some really good information on health aspects, you might want to get this book: The Everything Health Guide to Addiction and Recovery

Secondly- EXERCISE!!! Get up and move, get your circulation going. Even if it means parking farther away at work to get a few extra steps to/from work or the store, it will benefit you in some way.  Keeping up with household chores are a good workout (yeah, I know) but really, they are. Just don’t overdo the vacuuming or mopping if you have a back injury.  If you have the time and budget, by all means, go to a gym or fitness center. Then celebrate your exercise by turning on some music and dancing around the room. This can also can improve your #3-relationships. (Meet other people who care about their health). Getting outdoors is refreshing… go!When you look good, you feel good, so pay attention to your appearance. Treat your skin well, it is the only one you have. Maybe even try making your own skin treatments from ingredients in your kitchen.  Skin resources provides 100’s of easy recipes. See my ‘how to’ video in HOMEMADE Facial Mask- EZ on this site.  And there are many blogs out there that have ideas. I like Jill’s Home Remedies, that’s where I got the idea to use elderberry as a flu preventive. (So far, so good.)

Finally, be VERY cautious about what medications you take. If you have chronic medical problems, be honest with your doctor; be informed about your prescriptions; be willing to consider alternative pain management, so that you don’t fall into a transfer addiction. Don’t kid yourself, there is not a magic pill to make it go away.  I absolutely follow natural/organic/holistic approaches to my ailments.  That includes making my own skin care, grow my own vegetables, and utilize herbs and vitamins to supplement the minor conditions I experience as I age. Finding and taking the proper supplements can aid in eliminating those awful side-effects that sometimes are worse than the symptoms of synthetic medication.  Our bodies are wonders of creation, they can heal and mend, but it requires patience, knowledge and persistence. As I have said before; watch, listen, read.  Here are some suggestions for natural products you could try instead of potentially addicting prescriptions. Check out the ads on the right of this article.

For updates and advice about medical, I recommend: www.healthcaremagic.com  They talk about all kinds of things, from foods to medication to general tips- just about everything!  If you are curious or very interested in natural medicine, you might want to check out this natural home remedies ebook.

New Day in naturally healthy way

So, now that January is nearing an end, is your resolution also nearing an end or is your resolve continuing?  I hope it is, because new years resolutions are made with good intentions to change something that suits our needs, but doesn’t necessarily align with our wants.  It takes a concentrated effort daily to make that change stick.  Recovering addicts know this better than anyone. It is something that has to be thought about  each and every new day, one day at a time. Complications happen.  The key is to simplify.

Remind yourself of the positive reason you made your goal (resolution) before considering the obstacles. Those are what complications are made of. Your health and well being are first priority.  If only there was a magic pill for all the physical problems we face; diabetes, high blood pressure, headaches, etc or dealing with anxiety, depression, stress, etc.  Keep in mind that the human body was designed for living.  Nature is God-created, just like you.  Why do we turn our nose up at the things that are good for us, and choose instead, the alternative?Treat every day as a new day. If you are in the process of changing an old habit into something new, (and better) don’t stop! Keep learning, keep trying new, healthy things!  If you are looking for natural products to treat any number of nagging ailments, take a moment to look at some alternative resources,   such as herbal treatments, natural, nutritional foods and products that you can even make yourself.  Read, learn, listen.  Have you ever read the labels on products in the stores and can’t pronounce the ingredients? All the more reason to find the natural alternative remedy.  And there is one, because human will, spirit and the power of natural healing really can work.  Let me know what you think and feel free to add comments.

 

Honey for natural health help

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Have you thought about using products with all-natural ingredients to treat those unwanted aches, afflictions and illness? Honey can provide a whole lot for just a little (quantity and cost).

I recently discovered something that honey can do!  A co-worker and I were outside and some kind of buzzing, flying bug stung him on the arm through his sleeve. A red welt appeared and he said it was really itchy-burning feeling. We didn’t have any medicine handy, except I remembered my bottle of honey I keep for energy, and remembered reading somewhere that it is useful for relieving bug bites.  So, he dabbed on a bit and after 15 minutes, the red & swelling went down, he said it felt much better, but had to wash off the sticky.  Who knew? But, it worked!

During the years when I was in competitive track and field, (days which are now in history books) our coaches and sport therapists advised us to take a spoonful of honey before an event, and it worked! A natural boost of energy because it contains complex sugar, not refined.

Then, at times when those winter colds with nagging coughs would strike, the doctor said to take a spoonful of honey, and it worked! It soothed the cough. Too bad I didn’t discover this until AFTER I had spent way too money on over the counter cough syrups.. that didn’t work. Put some in a hot cup of tea and it is also a soothing remedy. Thanks to the wonderful people from frugally sustainable who provide wonderful info:

Winter sore throat “tea”- In a jar combine lemon slices, organic honey and sliced ginger. Close jar and put it in the fridge, it will form into a “jelly”. To serve- spoon jelly into mug and pour boiling water over it. Store in fridge 2-3 months. http://catherineboley.blogspot.com/2009/08/preparing-for-winter.html
honeylemon

 

I have used honey lately on my face. Yes, on my face. The way I like best is to mix a little in with a mashed avocado, spread it on, leave it for 15 minutes and what a wonderful feeling! Smooth, moisturized and soft skin.

Avocado with honey face mask

A funny note– it was delicious!  My youngest daughter wanted to try it, also.  She had fun.!

Not sure how it looks, but it feels good

Honey also has antioxidant and antibacterial properties to help with healing. For more information you can find out all about honey at: http://www.benefits-of-honey.com

Honey has different varieties based on the native flowers that bees feed on. That means the benefits vary from types of honey. depending on the nutrients they have used. There are some brands specializing in the nutrients that help regain strength after physical trauma and supports the immune system.

As I continue seeking knowledge about the benefits that nature provides, I want to pass on the message of how important it is to utilize natural resources, home grown, home made, organic products- like honey. It can be beneficial in improving health is so many ways. Did I mention the complex sugars are easier for body absorption, so it can help lose weight?

Frugally sustainable

What nature provides

Nature provides so much of what has been around since the beginning of the earth. Wouldn’t it make sense, that in order to find relief from the maladies our body contracts, to use products with natural ingredients?

I have had many clients that face chronic physical conditions. They struggle with pain, discomfort, and more than ever, side effects from medication. I think about this whenever I see commercials on TV that spend more time listing the possible side effects than the benefit of the medication!  So, I gotta wonder how bad the symptoms are to subject oneself to that.  Worst of all, is the ultimate side effect= addiction to pain medication.solitarypoem

Nature is God-given, and there are many resources that offer alternative, organic, natural treatment products. Perhaps you want to make your own herbal remedies.  There is health wealth that only nature provides!  Explore, look, read, learn.  For example, traditional, old-fashioned homemade remedies can be found at What Grandma Knew, provides many of these for common problems.  If you want guaranteed, pure, organic herbs so that you can make some of these, click on the right side of this browser Mountain Rose Herbs, has all you need… more recipes, too!

Stress is a major contributor to physical ailments. Nature also has ways to help alleviate the affects.  Trees are part of nature that helps reduce stress.

As spring comes upon us, take note of the beauty trees provide. Their bright, bold colors will burst during spring. Colors have been found to have effects on human senses and green is the prevalent color of trees.
“Green is said to be good for you heart. On a physical and emotional, green helps your heart bring you physical equilibrium and relaxation. Green relaxes our muscles and helps us breathe deeper and slower.

Green, which is Nature’s colour, is restful, soothing, cheerful, and health-giving. – Paul Brunton

How does the color green make you feel? For many people, it immediately brings to mind the lush green of grass, trees, and forests. Perhaps because green is so heavily associated with nature, it is often described as a refreshing and tranquil color.  

  • Green is a cool color that symbolizes nature and the natural world.
  • Green also represents tranquility, good luck, health, and jealousy.
  • Green is thought to relieve stress and help heal. Those who have a green work environment experience fewer stomachaches. http://psychology.about.com/od/sensationandperception/a/color_green.htm

I can’t hurt to consider natural alternatives before taking synthetic substances. Check if the active ingredient comes from a plant. Be smart, be healthy.

Unfortunately, some illnesses require serious treatment. We all probably know someone who has undergone the excruciation of chemotherapy.  There is little to help alleviate the miserable effects. Only love, faith and hope. My heart goes out to anyonedeath to life suffering with cancer.

Home made facial mask – EZ

I noticed that this cold winter air was beginning to dry my skin. Since I have vowed to use only natural ingredients, I discovered this home made facial mask recipe (in the e-book referred to in this video), made with egg white, e.v.o.o., grapefruit and mint. It only took a few minutes to prepare and it was actually fun. 

After rinsing, and even hours later, my skin felt revitalized, refreshed and smooth. I only used a portion of the quantity it made, and I hate to waste, so I put plastic wrap on it, and put it in the refrigerator. The recipe did not say how long it would keep, and I know the egg white would dry, so I decided to find out for myself on how long it would keep. I used it again the next weekend. After adding just a few drops of water, it softened up just like when first made, and left the same, clean, revitalized feeling. I don’t recommend using it past a week, but at least there was minimal waste and I got two uses.  My daughter (and esthetician advisor) says at least a once a week treatment does wonders for healthy skin improvement.

There are so many more wonderful, easy recipes in this e book. I am going to try the moisturizers, since the winter cold is causing dryness in my skin.  I’ll let you in on that soon.