Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Natures Healing Gold


It's smooth, thick, sweet and sticky, it comes in all sorts of flavours making sure there is at least one favourite for everyone - it's honey!

Honey is an amazing product. I know that if I have a sore throat, I instinctively go in search of the honey pail, if I am feeling like I need an energy boost, I head for the honey, if I want to soothe and help heal a skin malfunction I head for the honey and if I want to pick myself up and give myself a luxurious pampering treat, yes, I head for the honey!

Honey is super antibacterial. This fact makes it great to use on wounds, ulcers and even burns, and this is why hospitals use honey on surgical wounds, as honey is known to overpower even super bugs that don't respond to antibiotics. Best of all honey doesn't have any side effects, it's all pure and natural!

Did You Know: a great way to help heal cracked nipples is to smear them with raw unprocessed local honey when not feeding. Smear it on generously and put on a breast pad to protect your clothes getting sticky..wipe it off before feeding.

Honey is only made by honeybees. Honeybees have been around for more than one hundred million years. The honeybees collect nectar from thousands and thousands of flowers. They can work up to almost 24 hours a day and are eternally faithful to their Queen, and for all this the only thing that e honeybee asks for in return is its minimal food collections. Aren't they amazing!?

Disease threatens honeybees now though, and we need to look after them because if the honeybee dies off, we won't have this amazing product to help us in so many different ways in our lives, and that would be terrible, but even worse their demise would seriously affect our food supply as honeybees are also our pollinators for our plants. Two very Important jobs.

Honey is a wonderful ingredient to use in our cooking, from roasts to desserts, the ways you can use honey in your cooking are unlimited. There are many recipes online if you would like to google them. 

Did You Know: that the amount of honey a honeybee makes in its lifetime is about only a tenth of a teaspoon, so next time you are about to throw out your honey jar - stop - think of ways to use those bits of honey clinging to the sides of the jar..because one honeybees lifes work is resting there, and we want to respect every one of them by using ALL the honey. A good way to use up the dregs of honey in the jars is to add some milk to it, shake it up well and then take it into your bathroom and fill your bath with lovely warm water, pour that jar of milk and honey into the water and get in, lie back and relax for 20 minutes and let the milk and honey mixture work wonders on your skin!

The following are some of the ways that I like to use honey, I hope you enjoy reading them and if you have any ways that you like to use honey, I would love to hear them!

Honey - raw unprocessed honey, is good to use on your body to help heal things like burns and sores. Just make sure your sore part is properly cleaned, then apply honey to the gauze/padding you will use to cover your wound and apply this gauze. Use bandage to keep the padding/gauze in place and change it once a day (we like to change it at night because you are still at night and with a fresh treatment on, it gives it a better quiet time to rest, I am not sure if this matters really, but it makes sense to me! lol).

Did You Know: honey healing can also be used on your beloved pets the same way we use it on ourselves. Smear generously with honey and wrap in bandage to hold it on, change the bandage daily. 

We use honey to help keep colds at bay or to a minimum. You can have the honey any way you like it, and you can have as much as your body tells you it needs. A good way to have it is with meals, so honey on cereal or toast for breakfast or maybe with yoghurt as a snack. Honey is soothing and healing, so it works well for a sore throat too, just lick a teaspoon of honey anytime your throat is feeling sore and you will feel it being soothed immediately, it's antibacterial benefits linger to kill off the germs as well.

If you can't sleep try mixing 2-3 teaspoons of honey into a glass of warm water (milk works nice too if you like warm milk), drink this about half an hour before you head to bed and you should sleep well.

One thing I love about honey is that it only takes about seven minutes after eating some to give you an energy hit, so it's really good to have when you still have kids to look after and you are tired and running on empty. It's a sorted so quickly into our system because honey is a living food. This means basically that it has been pre-digested by the honeybee and that really means that it makes it easier and quicker for it to enter our own bloodstream. So it gets to us quicker and it also lasts longer for us to enjoy the benefits of it. Sugar also gives you that kick of sugar hit but once the sugar hit is over so is everything else..it burns off just as quickly, making honey better for us.

Did You Know: one of honeys healing secrets is its sweetness. Honey is packed full of simple sugars and they suck out the water from bacteria and moulds.  Water is the most important part of all living things so when the water is sucked out of them, they are destroyed. 

The following are a few recipes using honey that you can try that I love using on myself:

Milk and Honey Bath
This simple treat isn't for cleaning your skin, it's for use after you have bathed.
Fill your bath to about half full of warm water. Put two cups of powdered milk into a jug and add water to mix well. Add this to the bath water, stir it in well, then add about half a cup of honey and stir that in. Step into the bath and relax in the water for as long as you like. When you get out you will be relaxed and your skin will feel luxurious and moisturised. 

Milk and Honey Facial
This is similar to the above formula but it's used on your face.
Into a small bowl, mix two teaspoons of milk powder and two teaspoons of honey to make a smooth paste. Brush or smooth this mixture over your face and neck and allow to soak in for 15 minutes before your wash it off with warm water. 

Did You Know: Honey is a humectant, which means that it attracts moisture and holds it within it, so this is what makes using honey on your skin work so well at keeping it soft and subtle and helping it to restore its elasticity.

Honey Body Scrub:
This is an easy body scrub recipe that uses ingredients found in your pantry.

Into a small bowl mix a cup or two of sugar (any type is fine) with half a cup or more of honey, enough to form wet sand consistency or there abouts. Rub in small circular motions onto damp skin and rinse off to reveal smooth, soft, glowing skin. If you would like the formula to be less sticky, make the honey portion half honey, half edible vegetable oil (olive, sunflower, rice bran etc). If you would like the scrub to be cleansing as well or wash off easier, just add a dash of shampoo or dish washing liquid to it..easy!

So..how do YOU like to use honey?

Amanda xox

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

DIY All Natural Lip Scrubs

I wanted to talk about lip scrubs today, why, because spring has finally sprung and after the long cold winter winds, our lips need a bit of tender loving care to be their best for stolen kisses while watching the sunset!

The reason we scrub our lips, like we do other parts of our bodies, is because by doing so we help the delicate skin there retain moisture better, which in turn helps them to resist chapping. It also gives us a good smooth base to wear lipstick and help it stay on longer and makes those tiny lines around our mouths, that come with age (and if you are a smoker, smoking), less noticeable as well.

By choosing to make your own lip scrubs you have more control over what goes into them as I mentioned before, but also you can make them fresh each time you use them and they only take a few simple ingredients and they can be as fun as you want to make them, using what ever ingredients you have on hand at any time.

Because we are looking at making lip scrubs I would suggest that we look at things that we like to eat, so maybe salt won’t be the best exfoliant to use in this area as you will taste it when using it and salt can also be irritating to the sensitive skin on our lips.

So lets have a look at some simple lip scrubs to give you some ideas for what you can use yourself:

Lush Type Lip Scrub:

1 teaspoon of castor sugar

1 teaspoon of jojoba oil

Drop of flavour oil or essential oil such as lavender, spearmint, peppermint

Just mix together in a small bowl, adjusting the consistency of your lip scrub to suit your taste.

To use, rub a small amount on your lips and either lick it off or wash it off.

Apply a naturally made lip balm with no added petroleum products for best results.


Honey Lip Scrub

1 teaspoon castor sugar

Drizzle of raw honey

1 teaspoon of olive oil

Just mix together until you have a consistency that you like.

To use, rub a small amount on your lips and lick it off or wash it off.

Apply a naturally made lip balm with no added petroleum products for best results.


Fruity Lip Scrub

1 strawberry, mashed

1 teapsoon of castor sugar

Simply mix and use

I hope these simple lip scrub recipes give you more ideas on what you can use to try to make your own lip scrubs.


So have a look and see what you have in your kitchen to use as a lip scrub. It doesn’t have to be a sweet scrub like the ones I have suggested above, they are just a few of the types that I like to use. If you don’t like the sweet scrubs or you don’t like to taste the scrub at all, feel free to use other ingredients and experiment, some other idea’s include the following:


Honey and Almonds

A little bit of raw honey

A teaspoon of ground almonds

Mix and use straight away, rinse off with warm water or wipe off with a damp cloth then apply lip balm to keep the moisture locked into your lips. Raw honey is anti bacterial and soothing, the ground almonds will give a gentle exfoliation.


Yoghurt and Bicarb Soda

Mix a little of each in a small bowl and rub onto your lips. The bi carb soda in this recipe is the exfoliant and the yoghurt has good things for your skin in it as well so an added bonus!

What is your favourite ingredient for Lip Scrubs?? Please share so we can all have a try as well!

Amanda xox

Sunday, September 2, 2012

The Wonders of Bi-Carbonate of Soda!

Bi-carb soda is one of my most favourite ingredients to use around my house!

In our house we use bi-carb soda in many ways on various cleaning jobs and also in our bath and personal care routines, you can even use it safely on your pets.

Bi-carb soda is a cheap and easily obtainable, environmentally friendly and kid safe alternative to many of your everyday cleaners and on top of all that it wont hurt your health!

We know bicarbonate of soda here in Australia under a few different names such as :- Bi-Carb, Bi-Carb soda or sodium bicarbonate.

Here are some everyday uses I find for bi-carb soda –

Keep a little shaker container  or bowl of bi-carb soda under the sink, when you have tea stains in your coffee cups or on your spoons or pans, simply shake onto damp utensils or dip your damp sponge into the little container of bi-carb and wipe over the stains to remove them.
To keep your washing up cloths from becoming smelly, rinse them in a bowl of water to which you have added some bi-carb soda, then put on the dish rack to dry thoroughly over night.

If you have badly burnt on food in your pots or pans it can be easily removed by sprinkling the area with bi-carb soda and a damp scouring pad, but please don’t ever use this on non stick cookware! I have included these images I took the other day of how well bi-carb soda works with burnt on cookware, this was all clean in a few minutes!

Baked on from frying chicken this morning. This had already been soaking with morning fresh for hours, and washed up.
Still damp from washing, i sprinkle bi carb into the burnt on grunge in the pan and leave for only a minute..
I wiped this out with my stainless steel ball thingy on this side..just wiped off mostly. A few spots needed a bit of a scrub but in less than two minutes it was this clean! The outside i just did the same thing but used a normal scourer and it worked as well
If you run out of detergent  for your dishwasher you can always simply mix two tablespoons each of bi-carb soda and borax (also found in your local supermarket, it is a water softener) to the dispenser and use as usual.

When your chopping board is smelling a bit iffy and needs a spring clean, sprinkle about a 1/3 cup of bi-carb soda on it and add enough water to make it nice and moist. Leave it to soak for 10-15 minutes and then give it a good rub, rinse it clean and let it air dry.

If you have been filleting fish or peeling onions, you can get rid of the odour by rubbing bi-carb soda into your damp hands then rinsing off.

No more smelly lunchboxes – just sprinkle the containers with bi-carb and top them up with hot water. Let this sit for the day and rinse it out and air dry.

If you get those annoying limescale deposits around the bottom of your taps, sprinkle the area with some bi-carb soda, then spritz on some vinegar, when it starts to fizz and bubble, scrub the area with an old toothbrush. Leave this on for around half an hour to do its job and then rinse the area clean and wipe down, this also works on your glass shower doors (I just use an old nail brush instead of a toothbrush for larger areas).

To clean your toilet just sprinkle it with bi-carb (I like to add a few drops of essential oil to mine), leave that sit for an hour or so, then give it a good scrub with your toilet brush and flush, all done. By the way bi-carb soda is good for septic tanks as well if you have one.

Sprinkle bi-carb soda onto your carpets and rugs to remove odours and freshen them up. Just sprinkle them with bi-carb and go to bed, in the morning, just vacuum them as usual.

You can sprinkle bi-carb soda onto your dogs coat and brush it through to give them a dry bath (really good in wet weather) to get rid of that doggy smell. It can also be used on your dog if it has any skin problems, just fill up your pets bath, add a few tablespoons of bi-carb to the water (you can add a dollop of their shampoo if you really want to) and wash as usual, then rinse thoroughly.

If you are using kitty litter, shake bi-carb onto the bottom of the litter tray before adding the fresh kitty litter. The bi-carb works like an odour eliminator, so be generous when using it.

Gosh..see why I really can’t live without my bi-carbonate of soda!?? These are just ways I use it around the house in my everyday cleaning, I have not even touched on how I use it for acne breakouts, facial exfoliating, teeth whitening amongst other things!

I will sign off for now though as I am sure I have given you enough to think about already this time round. If anyone is interested in reading how else I use Bi-carbonate of Soda, simply put a comment on the bottom of my post.
Also I would LOVE to read how you like to use your bi-carb soda at your house, and if you have any handy hints and tips – PLEASE SHARE!

Have a great week!

Amanda xox

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