Thursday, May 26, 2016

Conditioner 1 and 2 FAIL. Oh and lice.

Well I tried the first mix. Would make a decent hairspray but not conditioner. For try 2 I dumped half the mix and diluted with water. Not crunchy this time but it made my hair feel like straw. Mix 3 is half acv, half water, a dash of lemon juice and a dash of tea tree oil. I think my hair is too fine for any honey. We'll see how this works.

As a side note- I'm using the tea tree oil as a lice deterrent. My job has me with teenage girls who aren't great at hygiene and who share everything. Add that if I have to do a restraint I'm right up next to them and I refuse to risk it. We live in one of the super lice states so prevention is worth it. I've been treating one child for lice for over a month. Last Wednesday I broke out the online homemade remidies. Did a acv/salt rinse. Soaked in coconut oil for 5 hours. Then a lice shampoo and ended with picking through her hair with the lice gel and comb. Seems to be improving. Cross those fingers.

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Homemade conditioner maybe?

For a long time I was a no-poo girl and I loved it. Then we moved and I was put on cymbalta. My hair began to fall out in clumps. I hated it. I also developed horrible dandruff. My doc recommended I use a regular shampoo and conditioner. So back to chemicals I went. But the cymbalta made me feel awful and after the Savella poisoning I knew the signs of toxicity. So off of it I went. Very happy to now me completely med free but my hair was still trashed. I began to see what homemade things help. Lemon juice, apple cider vinegar, diluted honey and many more were all over the web. I already used acv as leave in conditioner so that wasn't the complete answer. I decided to mix the above ingredients. I also added tea tree oil. I used probablt 1 1/2 cup acv, tbs mint honey, and 1/2 cup lemon juice with a dash of the oil. The acv broke down the honey so no sticky. Put it in today and my hair smells fantastic. Hopefully this helps enough that I can stop the shampoo again. Crossing my fingers.

Saturday, May 21, 2016

Armed Forces Day and a tribute.

I found out just a few days ago that there was going to be an Armed Forces day parade. We pulled a float for it last year, so I called my boss to see if she wanted to do it again. We decided to go very simplistic this year and I put together a missing man table.
Now, a little back story. Last year we had two Vietnam vets that rode in the parade with us. One of them told Hubby that when he came home from the war, no one threw a parade. No one thanked him for his service. Instead, he was spit on. He was called a baby killer. He teared up and thanked us for including him. "This is my parade. " he said.
This man passed away yesterday morning. I asked his family if we could include his picture on the missing man table. They said yes, and I printed it up, framed it and placed in on the table.
His daughter came to us in tears before the parade and thanked us for including him. As the parade came to the courthouse and our float was announced, the whole parade just stopped. The family stood there on the sidewalk, holding each other, crying and paying homage to their father, grandfather and husband. His name and rank were announced along with a sincere thank you from the community.
 Crash and a Marine friend of ours turned, saluted the flag and the family. Even the clouds parted and allowed the sun to shine through for the time we were stopped there.
When we were done, we kept everything in place so the family could get pictures. They thanked us again for doing this. Then his daughter told me that there wasn't going to be a funeral or a memorial service. This parade was the only thing that would be done to honor her father. Whoa. Talk about humbling.
They asked Marine if he would come to the house when his ashes arrived to help with the flag and give him a final salute. We were able to quickly organize a small family service with a flag ceremony, taps and the presenting of the flag to his widow.  Crash will be a part of this.
I'm so honored to have been trusted with his final ride. At an event where he was finally thanked for his service and treated with the respect he deserved all along.
Rest in Peace.

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Allergies suck

   I ate something I shouldn't have. A week ago Monday I ate a slice of key lime pie. By the time I finished it, my ears were itching. Like REALLY itching. Then the back of my neck and the jaw, then my forehead, the rest of my face and my chest. Thinking I got something on my skin, I washed my face with baking soda. HUGE MISTAKE! It spread like wildfire after that. I used some cortisone cream and went to bed. The next morning my eyes were swollen shut and my upper lip stuck out like a shelf. I went into the urgent care clinic and they gave me Benadryl. After 20 minutes, the swelling went down and I got my prescription for antihistamines, antacids and epipens. Home I went. I was hungry so I ate some hummus. Yup. Another big mistake, although it took me another day to realize that. I ended up in the ER getting a steroid shot in the rear and another prescription for prednisone. The next day, I was in bed feeling miserable and sorry for myself. I ate chips and hummus for lunch. And here we go again. I took my meds and toughed it out. Next day I drank water and chicken broth until late afternoon when I finally had one of the boys make me some ramen because I like food and couldn't take it any more. Here comes another reaction.
   So. Now I have decided it has to be a seasoning or preservative. I can't eat anything I don't make myself and use very limited ingredients in. Right now my go to meal is couscous cooked in organic preservative free chicken broth with parmesan cheese, cilantro and cherry tomatoes. Seasoned with salt only. It's really actually pretty good. And best of all, I don't break out in hives over it. I am drinking a lot of water and dandelion tea to get the histamine and drugs out of my system.
   I did have another mild reaction to César salad dressing day before yesterday while I was traveling. It was the least suspicious looking thing on the menu. I watched my husband and son eat their food and drink their lemonade while I felt my tongue start to tingle after the first few bites of my salad. It's got to be a seasoning, right?
   Sigh. I'm hungry.

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

If she's back I should be too!

I guess if a revival is in the works I should help. 😀

Life has been challenging but good. I'm working with behaviorally challenged foster kids as a caregiver. I'm very blessed that my health has improved enough for me to work. Things have been a bit challenging financially for a while. Husband never got the job we were expecting so things got very tight. Add the debt from all my medical bills when we lived in Nevada and we got stuck in a rock and a hard place. We actually had to file bankruptcy purely because of the medical bills. We so need health care reform that deals with the outrageous costs involved. Through all that I learned that more than half of the bankruptcy cases filed are due to medical bills. It's mind boggling.

One positive has been that all my food storage and other preps have come in very handy. We've not starved and we've been able to pay bills. I have been considering school for my BS but unfortunately aid goes off your 2014 taxes which was a much higher income. Together we make less than half of Husband's former income. Ick. Luckily cost of living is very low here. Since I can't get aid I'm looking at a bookkeeping course. I had to open a gofundme for it and wow is that humbling. I spent so long raising funds for other families that being on the other side is a huge eye opener.

On the prep front we are hoping to get a garden planted this year to help with food and food storage costs. We have plenty of space for it and with Husbad working locally we have more time to do it. Cross your fingers.

All in all life is good. Kids are fantastic. Monkey is now 7 and she is in 1st grade. She reads at a 5th grade level and does math at a 3rd grade level. Bug is 14 and ending her 8th grade year. I'm way to young for a highschooler. Ack! Our home is beautiful and we are together. Makes it a pretty good life.

Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Crazy day

OMGOSH! TEENAGERS! The boys are all teenagers now and today was a reminder why I don't like teenagers.

   Oldest is nearly 17 and mopey. All he wants to do is sleep, listen to music and draw. PLEASE son, get some freaking ambition! I mean, is is too much to ask that he wear clothes? Have any of you watched the show, "The Middle"? He is Axle but without the athletics. He's going to live with us until we die, I know it.

  The middle son is crazy. Like no joke. And half his friends are little jerks. The other half just want to make out with their girlfriends.... in my front yard. Ugh. One friend literally sucked face with his girlfriend every minute. They came up for air once in a while but they were practically getting it on on my trampoline. With half the neighborhood kids sitting right there with them. They all awkwardly played on their phones until the couple came up for air long enough to speak a few words before going back to it.

   The youngest son is the baby in every sense of the word. Someone's always picking on him. AND HE WHINES! Like a toddler. I tell him nearly every day, I didn't tolerate it when you were a baby, I'm certainly not tolerating it now. SHUT UP!

   I'm homeschooling now and so far it's gone very well. Today they just decided they weren't feeling it and did everything they could to get out of school work. Granted they did clean up the front lawn, do dishes and mow the yard.

   I don't know. Maybe I'll keep them. Or maybe I'll off one of them as an example to the others. I'll decide tomorrow.

Sunday, May 1, 2016


We've gotten a few more rabbits since I last posted anything here. I am breeding satins for show, meat and pelt. I like pretty colors and the satins give me that in spades.
This is Nora's latest litter. Nora is not a purebred but I couldn't part with her when we transitioned into the expensive bunnies. She's an amazing mother and has such a sweet personality. For some reason the weather has made this breeding season very hit and miss. Nora only had three kits, but she's got enough milk to feed a dozen. My sister had a New Zealand rabbit who wasn't able to feed all of hers, so we fostered two of them to Nora. The white kits are a bigger breed and older than my satins. See what a difference feed makes to kits?

They are more active by the day and their eyes have finally opened, almost a week later than they should have. They are now 2 weeks old and starting to explore outside of the nest box.

I have two more litters that weren't cooperating for pics today. One litter of 8 consists of three coppers, three gold tipped steels and two booted broken gold tipped steels.
The other litter of 3 has a black, a broken black silver martin and a broken chinchilla.

Out of 18 kits, only 4 are approved colors for show. Fair this year might be difficult.

Saturday, April 30, 2016

Trying this again...maybe?

   I've been doing more and more homesteading type of things that someone recently suggested that I write a blog. Yeah that one made me chuckle.
    Anywho. The bees are getting extreme as are my reactions to them. We have nearly sixty hives now with 20 more queens arriving next week for splits. When you have that many bees, you are bound to get stung. Often. Last year I got to a point where I would swell quite badly with each sting and the last few made my throat feel fuzzy. I am thinking an epipen is in my future. Just in case things go downhill in a fast way.

   We are expanding our product line to include honey, creamed honey in several flavors, lip balm, candles, heel balm, woodworkers crème, anti itch cream and a few others. We have been doing so many local events that I also bought an observation hive so people can see the queen and watch her lay. HUGE HIT! Kids in particular loved being able to see a queen bee and watch bees work up close and personal without the risk of being stung.

   We are selling our honey in several local stores and have been super busy keeping up with that. We got on average of 800 lbs of local honey plus we bought 2,000 lbs of honey from another beekeeper in Utah. It's all almost gone for the season so I guess we're doing alright.

   One of the biggest obstacles this year has been the weather. It's still snowing off and on. The blooms are way behind and some plants just never blossomed at all. We had our bees in a remote yard and at one point had to snow shoe in to check on them. So we are spending more time and money feeding the bees this year. That's ok though. The more we feed them now, the more honey they will give us later. We are going to try for almond pollination next year. We will have to move the bees to California in November to keep them strong enough to take to almonds in February. Leaving them here, they get cold and shut down brood production so they end up not strong enough during almond season. Not sure how I feel about that. I don't like turning over control of my bees to someone else. We'll have to see how that one goes.

Sunday, August 16, 2015

Cathartic writing

I recently encouraged a friend to write a blog. It's cathartic to write it out. With no filters. Just write. I realized I missed it. So here I am. Currently our area is under massive fire emergencies.  Our property is good but the smoke is thick on the air. We've got hundreds displaced. My county is very rural. The largest town has a population of 3000. It's a lot of ranches and farms and sprawling property. It's also a lot of poor. They depend on their property to sustain them. They grow their own food, well water and many only have rudimentary power access. So now they are left basically destitute. Our rural area also means we are a largely volunteer firefighting zone. With older equipment and lack of easily replacing. Honestly it breaks my heart. I wish I knew how to help.

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Gonna give this another shot

I haven't posted here in over a year. Life has gotten crazy and I need a way to let it out, so here goes!
    The bee business has taken off and we are up to 22 hives. We rescued three swarms last year and gained lots and lots of experience. We have plans to double or triple our hives this year and hopefully make some money at this.
   Water is so expensive that a garden might not be a reality any more. I am going to try for a small one and see how it goes.
   I started a new job at a pawn shop and really enjoy it. I have a wonderful boss who has been a friend for years. I can be at work when the kids are in school and home when they are. Even though they are much older now, they still can't be left home alone.
   We have three goats that provide meat and milk for our family. Daisy is the oldest and had twins last year. She and her daughter Rosie are both bred to a boer for kids this summer. Walker is a pet and since we can't eat him he is being trained as a pack goat for hunting season.
   The rabbit situation has changed, I now have satins rather than a bunch of rescued mix breeds. We ate one of last years baby rabbits and the whole family really enjoyed it! We have three purebred, pedigreed satins for the kids to show and one satin mix that I keep because she's such a good mother. Right now I have 12 kits that are a week and a half old. They are just starting to open their eyes and jump around.