Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Get well soon!

Over a month ago, our kids started getting a cough or a cold. The doctor said the kids had a viral infection. Can't do much for it. For over 2 weeks I have had a cough and cold. I can't shake it. I think it's also due to being rundown with so much going on at school. Now that the kids are on holidays and things have slowed down (no senior music camp, reading groups, sports day, early morning band practise, etc) I have had time to think amongst the haze in my head. I remembered a while ago I read that pineapples help soothe a cough. Next, I searched Google. 

Pineapples contain the enzyme bromelain. It has anti-inflammatory properties, fights infection and kills bacteria. It can suppress a cough 5x more effectively than cough medicine. One cup of fresh pineapple juice has nearly 50% of the daily requirement for Vitamin C intake. Drinking the juice helps soothe a sore throat and helps your body expel mucous easily. Pineapples are more than yummy, they're good for you!

If possible we prefer to use natural remedies over medication, however if we have an infection or we're really sick we visit our doctor.

I have been dosing up on Vitamin C by eating strawberries, pineapple and mandarin. Kelly, a friend on Instagram, suggested to steam my head, covered with a towel to keep the steam in, over a bowl of boiled water with eucalyptus drops in it. Twice a day for 10 minutes. It has been helping! Thanks Kelly. 

Yesterday I searched Google for a natural cough medicine. Today I made All Natural DIY Pineapple Cough Medicine. The recipe is here. Sue says it needs to be refrigerated and can be kept for up to 1 month. Read her blogpost for details (under the recipe, check out 'other homemade remedies to try'. The Honey Thyme cough medicine sounds yummy too). I made double the recipe in case anyone else in the family needs cough medicine. It tastes yummy and I love the bit of spice from the cayenne pepper. 

Last night I used our Aromamatic electric oil vaporiser with drops of Breathe Easier in our bedroom. It has corn mint, eucalyptus and thyme essential oils in the blend. I rubbed Vicks VapoRub on the soles of my feet and put socks on. It helps to ease coughing at night. I slept much better.

Many years ago, when Oprah was still on TV, she mentioned to slice up 1-2 whole cloves of garlic and add it to your sandwich; to help mask the flavour. I did this one time when I had the flu and I felt so much better the next day. I did reek of garlic however was glad to feel an improvement in my health. 

If you have any natural remedies you would like to share. Please leave a comment and a link to the recipe. Thank you.

Try to stay healthy during Winter, Julia xx

Tuesday, June 09, 2015

Our sunny garden

I have been busy preparing and working on our vegie garden. Removing sand in the top garden and spreading it on uneven patches in our lawn. Moving the mulch too. Back breaking work however so worth it!

Hubby helped me put soil in the garden and position the walking area, which is great for tending to the plants. This time we purchased better garden soil with compost in it. Before laying sugar cane mulch I sprinkled Dynamic Lifter

Vegie seedlings planted! 

French beans, spring onions, tomatoes, capsicum, mignonette lettuce, sweet corn, beetroot, snow peas, butternut pumpkin, zucchini, carrot, and garlic

Herb garden started!

Basil, sage, oregano, coriander (more herbs will be added)

Top left going clockwise - carrot, sweet corn, beetroot, snow peas

Butternut pumpkin. . .  and teeny tiny mushrooms that popped up

Top left going clockwise - snow peas, garlic, mignonette lettuce, spring onions

I read on the internet, to help repel some pests sprinkle dried and crushed egg shells. I have also been sprinkling smallish pieces of mandarin peel around some plants. The citrus oils may repel some pests??

Mint I planted last year

Blackjack zucchini

We have 6 citrus trees - Meyer lemon (blossoming below), 2x Imperial mandarin, Tahitian lime, Washington navel and Valencia

I posted a question on my Instagram @squeeze_cuddles the other day

"Our citrus trees were planted approximately 5-6 weeks ago. Should we remove the blossoms so the plants can grow stronger and be able to support the weight of the fruit?

Bianca from Coco and Moose passed on advice from her hubby - Yes, remove 99% if not all of the blossoms for the next 1 or 2 years. It allows more energy to be put into root and canopy development. Then once your citrus tree has established you can then let it produce fruit

I removed 65 blossoms from our Meyer lemon

I look forward to when we get citrus from our beautiful trees

{ Please drop by Coco and Moose for beautiful handmade baby clothing }

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Some plants are doing well, while others haven't grown much at all; like our beetroot and capsicum. Years ago when we had a vegie garden we had some success with capsicum. They have more flavour then store bought. I'll be buying capsicum seeds and hoping for a better result

Citrus trees along the back of the garden 

Our herb garden and some citrus trees. I'll have to reposition the herbs as the trees grow bigger. In the front is our rosemary bush. It has been here for a few years. I recently trimmed a 1/3 off of it

Today I planted some seeds and recycled at the same time! I kept the blue seedling container from when I purchased marigolds for the garden. I planted sweet corn seeds in it. The 3 containers in front were rice cracker trays. I planted cherry tomatoes, Roma tomatoes and Chinese cabbage in them. The white plant labels are made from an ice cream container I cut up

I'm enjoying our garden and hope we can get a lot of produce from it 

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Do you have any gardening tips or successes you'd like to share?

To view more photos from #oursunnygardenQLD

Have a beautiful day, Julia xx