Friday, July 31, 2009

august blog party: sweet medicine

this month's blog party is hosted by kiva over at bear medicine herbals. swing by her place and see all the wonderful submissions this month has to offer!

herbal syrups are one of my favorite things to make. they are so delicious and can use them on pancakes, on ice cream, on cake, biscuits or toast or you can take them straight or make them into soda! who wouldn't like to take their medicine in one of those forms?

my favorite syrup flavors are cherry, elderberry and ginger. all three are great to have on hand and can be stored in the fridge for a month or two, allowing you to make some medicine ahead of time to have on hand for the upcoming cold and flu season.

cherry is great for taming coughs and scratchy throats. it soothes and sedates the nerves that trigger the cough reflex, helping to soothe in that manner. it's best used in persistent, irritating coughs when you don't want to increase expectoration such as whooping cough and bronchitis. it has also been mixed with other herbs to treat asthma. wild cherry can also be used in treating sluggish digestion.

elderberry, is specific for treating colds and influenza. both the flowers and the berries have similar properties but for syrup making purposes, i stick with the berries. elderberry relieves lung congestion, can help with cases of pneumonia and has anti-inflammatory actions which makes it wonderful for treating arthritis. being rich in vitamin c, elderberry has been considered a prophylactic against winter colds which means taking a daily dose is not only a delicious thing, it's a healthy thing!

ginger is warming and stimulating. it's great for treating nausea, upset stomachs, morning sickness, colic and many other gastro intestinal upsets. it is also soothing to a sore throat.

all three make delicious soda, so you need not be sick to enjoy them! simply add about 2 oz of syrup per 8 oz of seltzer water, stir and enjoy!

to make the syrup, i start with about 2 cups of the fresh herb and 2 cups of water. for the cherry and ginger, i bring to a boil, simmer 10 minutes then cover and steep for an hour. with elderberries, i bring to a boil, turn off, mash the berries, cover and steep for an hour.

after the hour is up, strain off the herbs and compost them (ginger may be reused once or twice. simply freeze and thaw when needed). add 2 cups of locally raised honey to the infusion and gently heat to thin the honey enough. stir together and cool. store in a bottle in the fridge and it will last about 2 months (of course, in our house, it never stays around that long!).

take a teaspoon at a time, serve over pancakes, waffles or ice cream, or turn into a delicious soda! a sweet way to take your medicine.

facebook is the new blog

seriously, i spend so much time there, i rarely have anything to say here anymore. that will probably change when it's cold outside!

i just realized sage will be 3 next month and he still naps. that is a record for all 4 of my children.

the garden looks beautiful but not much is producing. the tomatoes and green beans especially.

lots of cucumbers from 1 plant and corn is now edible. 12 zucchini and summer squash plants have been narrowed down to 1 zucchini plant thanks to bugs.

getting back into the swing of school, behind schedule. it's all good though because even though we aren't formally doing lessons, we are still learning. unschooling at its finest.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

it's thursday!

that means i must be writing over at not dabbling in normal today!! a fun project that i started for my kids turned into a fun project for me.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

public service announcement

my recommendation:

do NOT buy from (and use caution, their products are for sale on amazon). i recently purchased a solar powered pump with battery for my water pond and the solar panel's glass was broken by a friend's over zealous little boy. i wrote to the company asking to purchase a replacement panel only since the rest of the system was still good.

they do not offer replacement parts, they expect the consumer to throw the entire system away and purchase the entire set over again. i find that ridiculous, unsustainable and a form of greenwashing.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

my kind of living

i love the look and feel of this place...the appalachians are so beautiful.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

time for a milk bath!

milking 5 goats a day gives us too much milk. i'm writing over at not dabbling today about what i'm doing with all that milk.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

august blog party: call for submissions

It's time again! The next blog party, graciously hosted by Kiva Rose at Bear Medicine Herbals is going to be on cordials, elixirs, and other yummilicious ways of preserving the summer herb harvest (I think this can include herbal honeys, meads, ferments, jams etc as well).

Submit your posts to Kiva by July 31 for an Aug 1 party date! Happy elixir making!

Monday, July 13, 2009

new giveaway at herbal roots zine!

isn't this butterfly sweet? sign up for a chance to have it flutter into your life at herbal roots zine.

not buying it - week 16 - 18

i fell behind posting so i'll try to catch up...been a lot of weaknesses these past few weeks. still overall, spending less than usual.


-using old pants to make field bags for the kids for nature hikes
-patched 2 dresses that had holes in them

-harvesting food from the garden: zucchinis, onions, potatoes, garlic, carrots
-eggs and milk from our backyard
-yogurt and cheese made from milk


-reusing plastic bags for trash bags

-shutting down power strips whenever possible
-making sure lights and fans are off when we are not in the room (kids are bad about this upstairs and it's driving me crazy!)

~hand made card for my mom and son's b-days
~wrapped gifts using packing paper (gifts were purchased)

exercise/self improvement
-knife throwing
-walks in the woods

~mom and dad picked up a ton of quart canning jars at a garage sale and gave them to me
~was given a wooden bookshelf that we are stripping and refinishing for jaden (we are hoping to move her out of our room and into her bigger sister's room soon)

~requested books from the library to get started on our summer semester of school
~sewing bags for the kids to hold nature study equipment (journals, paint, charcoal, pencils, containers for storing specimens, etc)

~took wwoofers out to dinner a few times (sushi once, american cuisine once)
~purchased gift cert and subscription for beading for my mom's b-day
~purchasing a bow for son for his b-day
~purchased ice cream cake and cheesecake and candles for b-days
~purchased a blender (tried finding at thrift store first)
~purchased new phone for home (ours died)
~bought some shirts, pente board game, baskets and wooden bowls at thrift shop (kids have destroyed all my nice clothes, bowls are all chipped and breaking, baskets are for making gift baskets for my business and for stashing things here)
~purchased 3 more dairy goats, excellent milkers at low prices from a reputable source
~throwing out the over abundance of cardboard boxes (recycling and using for paths)

independence days - year 2 week 9-11

this year i'm feeling very challenged about gardening and everything else...too much going on and not enough time for it all! i restarted the id challenge to get me going and guilt me into being busy in ways i need to be.

want to play along? visit sharon (the creator of this great challenge) to read all about it!

running behind on these! this is weeks 9 - 11. everything is growing slowly this year. it's been cooler than normal.

1. plant something
~echinacea pallida seedlings
~nettle seed

2. harvest something:
~eggs (chicken and turkey)
~various leaves for making my morning tea: chamomile, sage, bergamot, thyme, oregano, echinacea, motherwort, dandelion, lemon balm, peppermint, spearmint, basil
~grass from the lawn to mulch plants
~flowers to make pretty bouquets for the house
~green beans

3. preserve something:

~apricot preserves

4. Reduce waste:
~use canvas bags at grocery store
~re-use egg cartons for our nest run eggs
~use plastic shopping bags for trash bags

5. Preparation and Storage:
~continued digging water pond
~mulched the plants with grass clippings
~drying garlic for storage
~purchased 3 more dairy goats

6. build community food systems:
~sold eggs, yogurt & milk to local people
~worked on august issue of herbal roots zine to teach children about using herbs medicinally and for food
~worked on willoughby farm master naturalist intern project, pulling invasives and id-ing trees
~bartered milk for produce at market
~taught a friend how to make cheese and yogurt
~taught a friend how to make soap
~monthly herbal study group was held, topic was plantain

7. eat the food:
~herbs for tea and flavoring food
~zucchini, green beans, a few tomatoes, potatoes, onions, carrots
~applesauce from last year's stash

Sunday, July 12, 2009

please don't forget!

after tonight, herbal roots' blog will change to:

be sure to check back tomorrow morning to see who won this month's pendant giveaway and to sign up for the new giveaway.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

herbal roots zine's blog

please note that herbal roots is changing from herbal roots to herbal roots zine. the blog will reflect the same:

the current blog will not be accessible after sunday, july 12 at midnight.

Friday, July 3, 2009

envelope system

these are such nice envelopes for the money envelope system:

i know nothing about sewing in zippers but i think using velcro would work just fine too...

Thursday, July 2, 2009

food for thought

Slow down and enjoy life. It’s not only the scenery you miss by going too fast — you also miss the sense of where you are going and why. — Eddie Cantor

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Herbal Roots - July 2009

it's available, a bit delayed this month do to computer problems. (note to self: keep all cups of water FAR away from the keyboard!!)

this month is all about yarrow. you can read more about the current edition here.

congratulations to jenny b for winning the poetry contest. she gets july's edition for free.
Related Posts with Thumbnails