Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Liquid dishwasher detergent

So, pretty much all last year I was trying to figure out what was causing my boys eczema to flare up. Eczema is a crazy thing, it's an allergic reaction to something... finding that 'something' can be overwhelming and at times feel impossible. I have read HUNDREDS of different natural ways to get rid of this condition. Somewhere along the way I ran across an article about a girl who discovered that her eczema was caused by the dishwasher soap she was using for her dishes... crazy!!! So because I am willing to try stuff and this sounded very easy to do, I decided to make my own dishwasher detergent. Although it didn't really make a difference with the boys skin, I really, really like it! It's easy, inexpensive and works incredible. It's very 'green'... I really don't like how that sounds! Really, I do care about the environment but it is definitely not my first concern(anything green I do is undone because of the fact that my boys are not potty trained). If it's better for my family, that is why I do these things :)
Here's the recipe:
1 1/2 cups water 1/2 cup distilled white vinegar

1/4 cup liquid castile soap
2 tablespoons pure lemon juice (not concentrate)
2 tablespoons salt
1 tablespoon washing soda
**10-15 drops antibacterial essential oil, if using an unscented castile

extra white vinegar for the rinse cycle

In a small saucepan, combine water and vinegar over medium heat. Bring to just boiling and then reduce to low heat. Add each additional ingredient, one at a time, whisking as you go. Make sure everything is dissolved before removing from heat.

Allow to cool and then transfer to a storage container. When completely cooled the solution will separate into two layers, so shake it up real good before use.


I use 2-3 tablespoons per load. I also fill the machine’s rinse indicator with white vinegar – a very important step. Don’t skip this part! It will keep the dished ‘soap-scum-free’ and extra sparkle.

Monday, February 21, 2011

Lie to me

It's been a year since we made the very difficult decision to take Levi off of his medications. I feel bad that I haven't blogged about it every step of the way. I love reading blogs, but for some reason I feel like I can't blog because I may offend someone. I can be pretty blunt at times. BUT, I have decided, with the encouragement of some friends, that I will let you in on whats been going on here:)
What led to my almost nervous brake down was a meeting we had with Levi's ENT(ear nose and throat) Doctor describing the path to Levi's recovery from surgery. Now I know that they always feel the need to tell you the worst case scenario, I get that. But this was beyond that, it was a dark, back whole that we were going to have to walk into. I know that life experiences make you stronger, but when it came down to it, I couldn't imagine having to 'walk through the valley of shadow of death' again... and that is exactly how I felt. To top it off Levi's gastro-intestinal Doctor put him on a steroid that we were to mix with FIVE packs of splenda twice a day... Yes, that's 10 packs of splenda a day for a two year old, how long? Oh, we would have his esophagus checked again in 6 months and see if it was better, if not we could keep him on it longer... I still get a little furious when I think back on this...
The crazy thing about Levi's treatment is that on the outside he looked good. His reflux was controlled for the most part(any time it wasn't, they would just up his dose of medication or add another one when they couldn't), we had a nice steroid cream to keep both of their eczema under control, a great high calorie drink that was helping him get nice and chubby... but still, every time he would have his airway scoped it would look exactly the same as it had when he first got his trache. Red, swollen and inflamed. My baby could not eat a bite of baby food without gagging at age two.
So, what I have learned about medication and steroids this past year. If you need them, you need them and they are great to have around. BUT many times it sounds like you need them and you really don't. They lie to your body and tell you that everything is fine and on the outside everything is fine. But it's a double edged sworded that is both helping you and killing you! When the babies were in the NICU we understood this, it was what we had to do to save their lives. But why doesn't the treatment change when it isn't a life or death situation? Maybe it's because we like something fast, efficient, and something covered by insurance. We don't think about having to pay for the future consequences. And it's one thing to let yourself pay, but it's a completely different story when it's your baby that is paying the price. So, I had enough, more than enough. I realize now that it was totally God saving us from the path we were on and leading us a totally different way. The only reason we were able to make the change was because we were so fed up! And what we had coming was worse than what we had already been through!
God is so good, He brings us to such a painful place to help us change courses. And although it is so incredibly painful at times, without this we wouldn't have the courage to make any changes. This is also what I have realized, not everyone is ready for this, because you haven't been through enough to get you to the point of readiness, you may never have a need to. It may be to great of a sacrifice. For us it was more of a matter of choosing true healing, that comes from the Lord and giving up the lies that satisfy for a moment but lead to death....
I am thankful, so, so thankful and I'll tell you all about it! But hey, only if you want to listen!

Monday, February 14, 2011

Running from arrows

This morning the boys and I went to run errands. I had a ton of stops and everywhere I went I kinda had to hurry the boys along. I kept hearing Jesse tell Levi "run brother! Run from the arrows!", had no idea what he was talking about. He started asking me if we were going to have to keep running from the arrows and finally I realized, I had told them that we had to hurry because we had a lot of errands to run...

P.S. That was for you Em!