Reusable Mama Cloth Pad review: Party in my Pants!

WARNING: this post discusses menstruation & reusable options. I’ve had some people react negatively to this in the past. I understand this may not be an option all of you are interested in. If you are not, turn back, keep scrolling. If you are, read on please!

My “green” journey never ends. I continue to make changes I want, slowly but surely, as my budget allows. There is ALWAYS something on my list. I always look to what disposable items I’m using, and seek reusable alternatives for them. I used cloth diapers & wipes on my 2 kids. I use cloth napkins, “kleenex”, wash cloths. I did use a menstrual cup for awhile, The Keeper, but I just never fell in love with it. I liked that it was reusable, but that was about all I liked. I had been using organic cotton tampons & pads for the last couple of years. I liked that they were organic, had minimal plastic packaging, but they are quite pricey, and still disposable!

Then suddenly I realized it was time to move to cloth pads! I had seen Party in my Pants recommended in the past when this topic has come up. I clicked around their website a bit and when I learned they were based in my state of Wisco I was extra excited! They offer a huge assortment of shapes, sizes & patterns, organic & non.

My advice: definitely try at least 2 different options! I started with the Shebang Kit. It offers one of every size, I split it up between organic cotton & organic flannel. And I’m glad I did because I learned I like the flannel a bit more. It’s a bit softer. 1 month of using this kit & I knew what I needed to have on hand to make it through an entire cycle. I place another $120 order a week later & had enough for my 2nd cycle, with 2 to spare!

Pic: Shebang Kit, you pick the pattern & fabric.

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So, here it is, my collection! I looooove the options for patterns! I was looking at Glad Rags previously, they are solid beige in color. Seriously. No patterns, just solid beige. What a terrible option for a reusable pad! You will find that most of the options from Party in my Pants are dark, bold, heavily patterned, PERFECT for this product! This stash is very new indeed & I will be happy to snap a pic a year from now to compare! Also, want to make sure you know you can fold them up like I did in the bottom center, perfect for your purse, etc.

Here’s what I have, all organic cotton or flannel, with a leak-proof nylon backing:

1 small, 1 mini-liner, 1 Luxe Liner, 4 medium, 3 large, 1 overnight, 2 super overnight.

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CARE: They have a lot of info about this on their website! You can totally wash them with other laundry, but you should dry them on low. For that reason, I’ve kept them separate, as I’m not good at picking things out before tossing them in the dryer together. https://partypantspads.com/pages/faq

 

I have heard from several of you who have used these for months, or years, and love them! I’ve also heard from some who prefer another brand for a variety of reasons. Like with every other product recommendation I give, I do not expect 100% of you to love this as much as I do. But for me, it is working, I’m loving the product, the company, the feeling I’m voting with my dollars…

 

Website: https://partypantspads.com/

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Review of Tangie laundry paste!

Nothing gets me more excited than people who think outside of the conventional “box”, or plastic jug maybe I should say! I know many of you, like myself, are on a mission to use the least amount of plastic you possibly can. And that can be very hard to get away from, especially in products such as laundry detergent. Our options: liquid in a big plastic jug, or powder in a plastic bag. That’s why I was so, so excited when I learned about Tangie laundry soap. What is it? A traditional-looking bar of soap that you dissolve in your own container to make your own liquid! 1 bar makes 1 gallon of liquid which can get you 132-264 loads, depending how much you use/load obviously. This comment from Angie, the FL entrepreneur behind this product, solidified that I’d found a great new line. It is so, so refreshing to find others who accept environmental responsibility while getting their products out there, it’s not always easy to find! “I feel the packaging issue must be addressed from my side, as the manufacturer. Natural ingredients are great but if we’re still poisoning our water supply and our soil with plastic waste…. we’re not doing the best job we can.”

Of course, it’s all about the ingredients, and I’m happy with this list of minimal, yet proven laundry aids: handmade plant based soaps (coconut & olive oil), soap nuts liquid (extracted using solar ovens), yucca powder (washing), baking soda (freshening), oxalic acid (stain lifting & whitening), sodium percarbonate (stain lifting), salt (fabric softening), & LOVE!It is very rare for me to have a plastic jug on hand, just when I have some of my friend’s organic apple cider on hand, and I didn’t necessarily want to mix up enough for 200 loads if I didn’t love it, so started with ¼ of the bar & a 1 quart glass jar: OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

 

 

I’m very happy with this product as a natural laundry option, and even happier with the lack of plastic involved! I LOVE people that think outside of the norm, I learned about this product from Sarah of salonsolids, it’s a very similar concept but for shampoo/conditioner! I use 3T of liquid per load, it has been 3 weeks since I began using it & I haven’t even finished the qt yet. I do ~1 load/day. I use only cold water, and have hard well water. I was previously using Molly’s Suds, and think Tangie works as well, if not slightly better than Molly’s! I need to play around with the amount I’m using a bit, as it’s likely I could even be using less! I went with the middle ground recommendation on the packaging, not the smallest recommendation, not the largest.

Photo after 3 weeks of usage:

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I was also sent a sample of the stain remover bar. Ingredients: coconut oil, grapeseed oil, soap nuts liquid, oxalic acid, sea salt, citric acid, lemon essential oil & LOVE. I was curious to try it as the 1st ingredient is coconut oil, which is one of the main stains I deal with in our clothing as I use & make coconut oil based deodorant & toothpaste. I put the Tangie stain remover to test on my kiddos wild grape stained shirt: Top= Poofy, middle=no pre-treat, bottom= Tangie’s stain removing bar:

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I let it sit 8 hrs, then washed using the Tangie liquid soap, below is the after. I felt the Poofy spray & the Tangie performed very simalrily. I did not treat the stain on the lower left of the Tangie area, and that’s the only one I saw come through in the areas I treated. Both did better than no treatment for sure:

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You can contact Angie for a free 6-12 load sample, shipping is $1. Please do, and please share your feedback with me! I do not expect 100% of you who try this to find it to be the  perfect solution for your laundry needs. We all have different water types, machines, and expectations. But I hope you’ll give it a try & that many of you will find it to be a great option for your family!

WEBSITE: https://ilovetangie.com/ 

FB PAGE: https://www.facebook.com/ilovetangie

Angie’s email (use to request your $1 sample): Gratefulred78@gmail.com

 

 

 

 

Oct Buying Club Extras!

TO CLAIM: Email me  your list of desired items beginning at 10am Central on Monday, 10/30: ecofriendlymamausa@gmail.com

Where do these extras come from? 165 of you ordered from the original order. I have a minimum order with each vendor to get free shipping to me, etc. This order was HUGE so I grabbed a lot less extras than I have in the past. The Good Duck, for example, I need to order in a case of 24, only 13 were ordered so that’s why I have extras of those. For other vendors, I just grab an extra (or 2) of this & that of popular items while I’m submitting the order. So here’s the list! I pull items in the order the emails are received. I box it up, and send your total with exact flat or regional rate shipping. You pay via PayPal, check or direct bank deposit, I ship! Next order is in Feb.

 

LUSA ORGANICS: http://www.lusaorganics.com/

Locavore bars soaps @$5.50 ea: 1x Dancin’ Fool, 1x Lullaby, 1X Tofani

 

THE GOOD DUCK: https://shop.celebriducks.com/category-s/37.htm (SALE PRICES LISTED BELOW)

2 blue, 2  pink, 1 yellow (only offered once/year). $1off at $11.99ea OR Buy 2 or more & save another $1off each, so $10.99 ea if you buy 2 or more! Pink & Blue ones are $13.95 on Amazon!

 

POOFY ORGANICS: https://ecofriendlyusa.poofyorganics.com/

Samples @$3ea: medium & dark BB cream. Foundation: peace, love, truth, focus, harmony, hope

Bar Soap @$8: 1X zit zapper

1x patchouli/citrus deo @$11

2x full-size peace foundation @$25– NOW 20% OFF, SO $20!

 

 

JOSIAH’S OILS: https://www.josiahsoils.com/– NOW 20% OFF (prices listed are full price)

1x insect away stick 10ml kid-safe blend @$6.99ea

2x Lil Noses zinc oxide stick 10ml @ $4.75ea

1x zinc oxide stick LG @$14.99

1x after shave toner, small, $5.99

 

IMAGINE GREENWEAR:

This in size 6. I got it for my Son, it was a bit tight, he just tried it on. I’d say they run a bit small, but he’s a tall lanky 6 year old. https://www.facebook.com/397517646930548/photos/a.2046460848702878.1073741886.397517646930548/2046460912036205/?type=3&theater

 

 

MAMA SUDS: https://www.mamasuds.com/ NOW 20% OFF (prices listed are full price)

 

1x auto dish sample @$5

 

ONYX: (prices reflect 10% off Oct special), Tickle Trunk is retail site to see options: https://www.thetickletrunk.com/

1x 8 oz double wall mug @$12.60

 

MOLLY’S SUDS: https://mollyssuds.com/ NOW 20% OFF (prices listed are full price)

1 cloth diaper powder@$5

1x 120 loads unscented @$21.99

70 loads @$13.99: 2 regular, 1 unscented

 

NATURAL SPRINKLES COMPANY—1ST TIME OFFERING: http://www.naturalsprinklesco.com/

NOW 10% OFF, FULL PRICE IS LISTED BELOW. YOU CAN SEE ALBUM WITH BELOW OPTIONS HERE: https://www.facebook.com/pg/Eco-friendly-babyfamily-products-MADE-in-the-USA-397517646930548/photos/?tab=album&album_id=2034635889885374

1x 2 oz birthday medley @$9

1x 2 oz pink sugar @$5

1x 2 oz green sugar sprinkles @$5

1x 4 oz orange/black sugar crystals @$9

1x 2 oz orange/white jimmies @$6

 

 

Preserve: https://www.preserveproducts.com/shop/bath (SALE PRICES LISTED FOR RAZORS BELOW)

7 tongue cleaners @2.75 ea

3 blade razor (comes with 2 refill blades) $8.50ea

2x 3 blade refills (4 cartridges each) @$8.50

4x 5 blade razors on sale normally $12.99, now $10.99

2x 5 blade refills (4 cartridges), normally $14.99, now $12.99

 

Salonsolids: prices reflect 10% off October special: http://salonsolids.com/

Shampoo @$16.20ea:  1x lemongrass

Conditioner @$16.20ea: 1x citrus

 

 

 

GLASS DHARMA:  http://www.glassdharma.com (SALE PRICES LISTED BELOW)

1 12X9 beautiful bends smoothie @$9.99

1 9.5X9  beautiful bends set of 4 @$35.95

2X 9.5X9 Simple Elegance set of 4 @$31.95 ea

 

REDMOND: https://redmond.life/

1x mud mouth squeezer @$.99

 

SIMPLY GUM @$3 EA (OR MIX/MATCH 6 PACKS FOR $15): https://www.simplygum.com/

1, spearmint, 7 fennel licorice, 6 cinnamon, 5 maple, 4 coffee, 6 ginger

 

JESS’ HOMEMADE DEO, TOOTHPASTE, SUGAR SCRUB

$7.50/jar, toothpaste options here, I need to know if you want it with or w/o calcium, and which flavor: https://ecofriendlymamausa.com/buying-clubdeomy-poofy-organics/eco-friendly-usa-homemade-toothpaste/

Deodorant options here:  https://ecofriendlymamausa.com/buying-clubdeomy-poofy-organics/homemade-deodorant-body-scrub-info/

 

 

SCRATCH, DENT, MISPICK SALE ITEMS:

All the following is from Mountain Rose. I bottle that was close to these items leaked en route to me. It didn’t affect anything inside the bottles, but the biodegradable packing peanuts they use kind of dissolved & got cemented to the bottles, and messed up the labels a bit. All seals still intact on all products, they just look a little rough:

ALL 10% OFF, SALE PRICE REFLECTED

1x 3 oz spearmint hydrosol @$6.53

1x 4 oz eucalyptus globulus EO @$20.25

POOFY ORGANICS:  1x tanning oil @$10 (normally $14)

Jess toothpaste already made: normally $7.50 for 4 oz, $15 for 8 oz

8 oz spear no calcium, $14

4 oz deo: 1 Cedar/lav , 1rose geranium @$7 ea

Random things I have for sale, make an offer, I want it GONE: https://www.facebook.com/pg/Eco-friendly-babyfamily-products-MADE-in-the-USA-397517646930548/photos/?tab=album&album_id=1489593477722954

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We bought a school bus!!!

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Why, you might ask?! No, not for a chicken coop….. To gut & turn into an RV!! Here’s the background: We were on our way home Northern WI (back home to the SW), and saw a fleet of school buses for sale somewhere mid-state. Hmmmmmm I thought: after 5 camping trips this summer, and a recent 9 night Air BNB experience, and only wanting to do longer & longer trips, why not get a bus & convert it to an RV?! Rv’s themselves are quite expensive, and said to be made from very thin, cheap materials. Pull-behinds need a super fancy truck to pull them, something we don’t have…

So we came home with school buses on our mind, and hopped on to our local Craigslist, which is an hour away. And sure enough, our local school district, 5 miles away,  had 3 of them up for sealed bid, with the bid due 2 days after we were seeing this post for the 1st time. We clicked around on Craigslist a bit more to see what some others were going for, and put in what we considered a low bid for either an ’01 or ’07 bus: $3500. I handed it to the local bus garage manager, and told him I looked forward to him calling me to come get my bus soon. And that they did! A couple days later I came home from a picnic at the park with my kids to a message on our machine that we had placed the highest bid & got 1st dibs!

It took a couple weeks from the time we were told we “won” it, and the time we picked it up, they removed the stop sign, the flashing lights, painted over the school name on the side. My Hubby went & picked it up on the rare day I was in my office 8 hrs. He picked it up at 11am, picked our kids up at Gigi’s (my Mom) at noon, by the time I got home at 5pm, this was in our driveway:

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Best. Fort. Ever.

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We HAVE to paint it something other than “national school bus yellow”, and have to do x,y,z (will write about later as I deal with them)! What we have in mind: living in WI is as awesome in so many ways! For travel, it’s a great central spot! We want to do 2-3 month loops from our home base. We will not be selling everything we own to live in this school bus, like some do. We will maintain our home base her in SW Wisco, and travel!!! A 2-3m NW loop, home again for 2-3m. A SW loop, a NE loop, a SE loop….. And visiting as many of YOU as possible along the way. Those of you I’ve been in contact with for YEARS now. It’s about time we finally meet. And maybe you just happen to have an XL driveway, back yard, or field we can park this beast in for a night or 2 or 7 while we’re passing through 🙂

Updated Simply Rustic Review

My original review of Simply Rustic products was 1st shared in Nov of 2012!. The products haven’t changed all that much, the line did expand a bit over the years. But the things I love about it remain: there is very, very little plastic used in this line. Most of the products come in glass jars or stainless tins. The beloved lip balms do come in a plastic tube, but I’m willing to overlook that for this particular product as I prefer a tube to a tin that I have to use my fingers to apply it from. What has changed with this line? Ownership! I was a bit sad when Amanda, the former owner, let me know she was considering giving up Simply Rustic for a full-time job elsewhere (one that she really wanted & enjoys). Amanda was running the company from Northern WI, my state, so I was sad to know it may leave here. She asked if I’d mind posting the opportunity for someone to take over the business in my group page. I thought it was a long shot, but didn’t mind posting it for her. We were both shocked how much interest there was! At least a dozen people were interested, and eventually a long-time member of my online community took over ownership just months ago. So while I was sad to see Simply Rustic leave WI, I knew it would be in good hands in the Pacific North West (WA state) with Britney. Britney is a former teacher & this shines through in her attention to detail & how she jumped right in & soaked up as much knowledge as she could from Amanda then hit the ground running, making nothing but positive changes to this line! Here is a bit about Britney from the ‘about’ link from the website: http://www.simplyrustic2011.com/about.html

Amanda had certainly been using all-natural ingredients, some local, some wild-crafted, some organic. But Britney has converted to using organic ingredients whenever possible. For each product listed you will see she includes an ingredient glossary down below, where she describes the benefits & purpose for each ingredient selected in the recipe. There is so much great info there & I’ve learned a lot in reading up on some of the oils & butters! She has also expanded the flavor selection of the lip balms so many of us love, offering warm, seasonal selections such as : Apple Spice & Pumpkin Spice! These in addition to a Vanilla Chai, Happy Birthday Cupcake (created for her daughter’s upcoming B-day), and even a S’mores flavored lip balm (created for her Son, who was jealous his Sissy got one created for her)! There is even a new Pumpkin Spice scrub & body butter for those who love that special autumn scent! I know it’s usually a love it or hate it on the seasonal offerings such as pumpkin. Personally, I’m kinda’ neutral on them, they’re not my favorite, but I don’t hate them. My opinion on Britney’s new creations: they still go on very nice & smooth & leave my lips shiny and moisturized. I don’t think I’ll ever find any I love more than the current offerings of pomegranate/coconut/vanilla (my all-time fave), chococate/strawberry & raspberry/lemonade. Those are just soooooo good, they’re hard for me to move beyond & I don’t desire any more than them, they make me happy J She did send me a choc/straw lip tube to compare to what Amanda offered. It had the same great texture, I did think it had a bit more of a chocolatey taste to it vs former batches, which wasn’t a bad thing! Britney said one reason could be because she switched to organic cocoa butter, the flavor could be a little more intense, which is definitely a possibility. My conclusion on the lip balms: they’re still great, and have gotten even better with an increase in organic ingredients & several additional flavors. Britney does plan to keep the seasonal ones around just for a few months, unless they become so loved that y’all can’t live without them, yet to be determined! The kids flavors could make excellent stocking stuffers this Holiday season! She also is offering an unflavored option, by request, for those who desire no flavor, but still want to nourish their lips. She only increased her price by $.50 to $3.50/tube, a great deal & very comparable to other great, safe choices from my ‘approved’ list. The ingredients vary, so check them out in this link here: http://www.simplyrustic2011.com/store/c10/Lip_Tubes.html

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Other products I’ve tried out that she sent me: Revive Body Butter ($15). It smells so good, and the benefits of the oils used are amazing. If you’re used to a whipped body butter, this is a bit more dense. But it truly melts on your fingertips as soon as you touch it & a little goes a long way. As we head into winter, and dry skin season, I’ll be so excited to have this product on hand to nourish & protect my skin! Ingredients in this butter: Fair Trade and Organic Unrefined Shea Butter, Organic Unrefined Grape Seed Oil, Organic and Unrefined Pumpkin Seed Oil, Organic Yellow Beeswax, Organic Carrot Seed Essential Oil, NonGMO Sunflower Vitamin E Oil. E

rise and shine

She also included a Rise & Shine! Body Scrub ($12), it has become a favorite of mine for sure. I LOVE coffee. I love the smell of coffee. I’m just a 1-2 cup/day drinker, but I love it. This scrub has coffee grinds in it & oh my goodness, it’s such a full sensory experience. I rarely bathe in the morning, usually evening, and this has helped give me a pick-me-up on more than once occasion, my second wind to keep me up those extra couple hours I need after getting the kids to bed (on occasion, often I crash with them). Here’s what Britney says about it: “There is a coffee shop in Sequim called Rainshadow Coffee and they sell the most amazing smelling fair trade and organic coffee beans. I used these ground beans to make the Rise and Shine! Body Scrub. It smells wonderful and it feels so good on your skin, especially after the shower. No need to moisturize after the bath or shower.” And she’s right, this product exfoliates, but also hydrates so, so well. You do not need any moisturizer after you get out of your bath or shower. It comes in a 4 oz glass jar. Full List of Ingredients: Fair Trade Demerara, Organic and Fair Trade Coffee, Organic Grape Seed Oil, Organic Cocoa Powder, Fair Trade, Organic Cocoa Butter, Organic Castor Seed Oil, NonGMO Sunflower Seed Vitamin E Oil.

I will update this review when I’ve had a chance to use the rest of the products she sent, which are from the face line. I don’t have much of a face routine currently, usually a hot wash cloth & my nightly moisturizer, but I do want to give the products Britney sent a try as full routine. I have tried the face/body wash & as it says on the bottle, a little DOES go a long way! Seriously ½ a pump was more than enough to wash my face, it lathered incredibly well! Here’s what Britney said about the face wash: “This product is one of the many reasons we bought Simply Rustic. This was a new product that came out right before Amanda sold the company to me. I don’t think many customers knew about it or had a chance to try it. My husband LOVES this face wash. When I started talking to him about the idea of possibly buying Simply Rustic, he said that we had to do it to keep using the face wash. It smells awesome, cleans our skin so well and the bottle lasts forever. Just half a pump goes a long way. There are so many benefits to the ingredients of the African Black Soap (listed below). It is awesome!  Ingredients: Raw African Black Soap with Shea Butter (Wildharvested and Unrefined Shea Butter Fruit, Coconut Oil, Wildharvested Palm Oil, Cocoa Pod Ash, and Water), Organic Glycerin, Witch Hazel (alcohol free), Organic Frankincense Essential Oil, Wildharvested Rosewood Essential Oil and Organic Guar Gum . Comes in a 4oz glass bottle with pump cap!

The face care regimen she suggests is this (and she included all products for me). I intend to start using all 3 products & give them a full month trial & will update y’all on my thoughts. I expect nothing but a good experience!

Suggested routine:

1: face wash

2: toner (she sent me Dancing in the Meadows). Britney’s comments on her toner: “After washing your face, get a washcloth or cotton round (whatever you use), and apply the Dancing in the Meadow face toner. I love this step. The toner smells so good and makes my skin feel like anything that was left behind is being wiped away. It’s really pretty too. Those are calendula flower petals floating around. The toner is alcohol free so it won’t dry your skin.”

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3: Dusk til Dawn Serum + Face Oil: From Britney: “This oil is the first product that I bought from Simply Rustic and I love it so much. I love that my face still feels moisturized when I wake up in the morning. The smell makes me happy and the benefits to my skin are amazing.” Serums + Face Oils available in a 1oz Amber Glass Bottle with Dropper Cap. Need a little more umph with your facial care? The Concentrated Serums + Face Oils are packed full of anti-oxidant, anti-inflammatory and graceful aging benefits plus vitamins and minerals. Yes, you can use this as the moisturizer part of a skin care routine. Dusk til Dawn has heavier oils so if you have normal or oily skin this would probably work better for you at night. In the winter, I can use this one as a daytime moisturizer. Serums + Face Oils are designed to penetrate deeper layers of the skin compared to a facial moisturizer. Don’t want to give up your moisturizer? You can use both…cleanse your skin, use toner or not, apply the serum and let absorb and then apply the moisturizer. Have frizzy hair or fly-a- ways? A few drops applied to palm of hand, rubbed between hands and smoothed through hair will tame both.”

In conclusion, thank you for taking the time to read my thoughts on this line that has been on my ‘approved’ list for several years now. I truly love the dedication, motivation, inspiration that accompanies small(ish) lines like Simply Rustic. I know many of us like supporting the “little guys” with our dollars. By purchasing from Simply Rustic, your dollars are truly going from one family, to another, and we all benefit by voting for safer products being created with the best possible ingredients.

You can purchase these great products via the website:  http://www.simplyrustic2011.com/

You can also purchase Simply Rustic via my Eco-Friendly USA One-Stop Shop order, I do 3/year: Feb, May & Sep, the Sep order opens next week! Details for that here: https://ecofriendlymamausa.com/buying-clubdeomy-poofy-organics/eco-friendly-usa-buying-club-2/

 

My Natural Remedy Collection

It’s that time of year again: the start of cold/flu season. Many of you sent your kiddos back to school in the last week or 2, and with that comes the sharing of lots of germs. The question has started popping up: what do you do for immune boosting and limiting time spent sick? So I decided to go through my home & pull my various remedies. Some will definitely not apply to your needs, some may. I am NOT a doctor. I am a Mom who seeks out natural remedies to boost my kiddos immune systems & treat their symptoms whenever possible, resorting to conventional medicines as a final resort as needed, and sometimes they are needed. Also, we are generally very healthy. We have no known allergies or sensitivities. Many months go by that we take nothing more than our probiotics, and even those are rarely on a daily basis.  My Mom is the nurse in our local Complimentary Medicine Clinic, so she’s a wealth of info for me as needed. I hope this helps give you some ideas as to things you may want to have on hand in your natural medicine cabinet. You’ll notice I don’t mention dosages below. I’m hesitant to recommend dosage because again, I’m not a doctor. I’d like you to research that further and consult your own trusted sources to determine that.

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Back Row L to R:

Boiron Chestal kids/adults: I absolutely SWEAR by this cough syrup & when I shared last winter many others chimed in that they do too. Kids can use the adult version in smaller amounts too, so if you want just 1 go with the adult, I have 1 of each & never go without it. It worked very, very well on my kids nagging nighttime cough last year: http://amzn.to/2xaMYJa

Culturelle for kids probiotics: Definitely shop around, you can find it on sale via Vitacost & other outlets from time-to-time. My food co-op had it on sale a few months back & I bought several boxes for quite reasonable: http://amzn.to/2w714X1

PB 8 adult: I take these, I get them from Vitacost (my food co-ops sells them too but they’re a lot more expensive there). They’re very reasonably priced & I feel sufficient for my needs. I know there are a TON of probiotic options out there!  We also drink kefir & eat sauerkraut to get a variety of good bugs. Vitacost has sales a LOT! https://www.vitacost.com/nutrition-now-pb-8-supports-digestive-health

Traditional Medicinals Echinacea Plus Elderberry Tea: I brew some up anytime the kids complain of not feeling well, at the 1st sign of symptoms, as well as just from time-to-time for general immune boosting. Kids love this tea with some raw, local honey as well! http://amzn.to/2vLoeHf

Metagenics Ultra Potent C: http://amzn.to/2gLXLm1

Redmond Clay First Aid (hydrated bentonite): I’m not seeing the hydrated clay on their site currently, but you can get their dry powder & add water to make your own paste. I also add the powder to my homemade toothpaste. https://redmond.life/shop/redmond-clay-powder-10-oz/

Poofy After Sun Spray: One of those products you hope you don’t need, but it’s amazing for sun or any type of burn: https://ecofriendlyusa.poofyorganics.com/products/1016-after-sun-spray-organic.aspx

Poofy Everything Salve: TRULY good for everything! Bug bites, stings, burns…. https://ecofriendlyusa.poofyorganics.com/products/1156-everything-salve-organic.aspx

Pictured below, the generic, bulk pellets: It’s awesome to be able to buy homeopathic pellets in bulk, definitely saves money & reaffirms what an alternatively-minded area I live in when I can get these over the counter at my pharmacy!

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Front Row L to R:

Hyland’s Calcarea Fluorica: used to target teeth remineralization: http://amzn.to/2xOpjLF

Hyland’s Calcarea Phosphorica: also used to remineralize teeth: purchased on Amazon, not seeing it listed currently, my food co-op also sells many of the Hyland’s remedies.

Chamomilla (generic): I used these when my kids were teething. My local pharmacy stocks many homeopathic remedies in bulk!

Kali Bichromicum (generic): again from my local pharmacy. For cough symptoms, I can’t remember if it was for dry or wet cough, that definitely matters as you’d want a different remedy for a dry cough vs a wet one.

Nux Vomica (Boiron): I swear by this remedy for bellyaches, we never are without it! My kids ask for tummy pellets if they’re not feeling well!

Four Elements Echinacea: Pretty sure I got this at my food co-op. I add this to their elderberry syrup concoction when giving it for general immune boosting.

Montana Farmacy Japanese Knotweed: purchased at my food co-op for my Son’s Lyme’s symptoms.

Hawaii Pharm Cat’s Claw: purchased at my food co-op for my Son’s Lyme’s symptoms.

NutraMedix Stevia:  Also for Lyme’s symptoms, purchased via Amazon: http://amzn.to/2gMdYYs

Cough Care: Mountain Rose Herbs, not currently seeing it listed….

Nature’s Answers Milk Thistle: from my food co-op, great for healthy liver support. This looks like a good option via Amazon: http://amzn.to/2gNDPz1

Herm Pharm Myrrh: Bought when I was dabbling in making my own mouth wash, then Poofy came out with theirs & I’ll never use anything else. But it also lists immune boosting properties so I’ll try to incorporate it there. Bought at my food co-op.

Josiah’s Germ Fight Blend for diffuser: You can select Fir Blend if you have young kids in the home. I also use Josiah’s Atomizing diffuser. This 2 oz bottle lasts me an entire cold/flu season: http://www.josiahsoils.com/store/p353/Germ_Fighting_Blend_%28Previously_%22Germ_Fighting_Thieves%22%29.html

Josiah’s Oils  Germ Fight Blend Diluted: I use this topically at the 1st sign of symptoms. Kids know to ask for it & rub it on each other’s spines even! For the very youngest kids, select the Fir blend. At 4 & 6, my kids are using the regular blend now: http://www.josiahsoils.com/store/p349/Germ_Fighting_Roll-On_Blend_%28Pre-Diluted_and_Ready_to_Use%29.html

Josiah’s Oils Sniffles Blend: Slightly different than the germ fighting blend, I keep on hand for when I hear them start to sniffle. You can get it concentrated for the diffuser or select roll-on from the drop down menu for topical use: http://www.josiahsoils.com/store/p390/SNIFFLES%21_%28gentle_for_big_%26_lil%27_noses%29.html

Cold Bee Gone: Some use this as a preventative, others at 1st sign of symptoms: http://amzn.to/2eLqOpg (also available via my buying club for $9.95)

Front, center:

Bach Rescue Pastilles: I purchased these at my food co-op before we flew to Mexico. Many swear by Rescue Remedy, it comes in liquid & other forms, and for pets even: http://amzn.to/2wHP4Nv

St. Claire’s Tummy Soother’s (they also make throat soothers): purchased via Mountain Rose Herbs: https://www.mountainroseherbs.com/search?page=1&q=tummy+soother&utf8=%E2%9C%93#product-1576

 

Not pictured (I’m sure there’s more I’m forgetting):

— I make elderberry syrup in the fall going into winter. I add wild-harvested dried ginseng & goldenseal powder (harvested by my Hubby. This is our go-to elixir for immune boosting. I do 3-4 days on, 3-4 off for general immune boosting. If they’re coming down with something I will give it twice/day for a couple days. I get 1# of dried elderberries from Mountain Rose Herbs for $14.50, this is enough to last all cold/flu season. I’ve adapted Wellness Mama’s Recipe (add ginseng & goldenseal as mentioned above, remove ginger & cloves as it made it too spicy for my kids): https://wellnessmama.com/1888/elderberry-syrup/.  You can also buy the syrup already made (MRH is currently N/A, but they have extracts), just make sure you’re not getting additional unwanted ingredients in the syrup. Dried: https://www.mountainroseherbs.com/products/elder-berries/profile.

Humidifier! We heat with wood, and it makes for a very dry environment in the fall & winter months! We went with this one, it is made in China unfortunately but I love that it doesn’t get things wet at all around it! I’m going on my 3rd winter with it now!  http://amzn.to/2yldRqs

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–Arnica— I’m out. I get what my food co-op has, will comment when I re-stock!

–Poofy’s Vapor Rub, there is a blend for under or over 5 years old, I need a fresh tub to start this season off with: https://ecofriendlyusa.poofyorganics.com/search.aspx?searchterms=vapor

 

–Epic Dental Xylitol Mints. I’ve been working on Remineralizing my daughter’s teeth for a few years now & give her these mints 1-2 times/day after brushing: http://amzn.to/2wFZ9fo

 

In conclusion: am I saying you should run out & buy 1 of everything in the picture? Heck no! I’m just giving you some ideas & showing you my collection based on the needs of my family. Mountain Rose Herbs is an amazing resource for tinctures, elixirs, remedies of all sorts!

***Mountain Rose Herbs, Josiah’s Oils, Poofy Organics and Cold Bee Gone are all vendors in my upcoming buying club. You can purchase what you need from each of them (a total of 29 vendors offered in total) and have it all shipped to you in 1 flat/regional rate box! https://ecofriendlymamausa.com/buying-clubdeomy-poofy-organics/eco-friendly-usa-buying-club-2/

 

9/23/17, I added this kit to my collection! http://amzn.to/2xBB5v7

 

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Being prepared makes me a happy Mama! Someone asked about a good kit last week, and I recommended Boiron because that’s the name I’m most familiar with. I learned about this brand, Helios, and they come highly recommended. They hand-dose their pellets vs using machines like the bigger companies. The company is based in the UK but I felt good supporting them vs Boiron or Hyland’s….Yes, this was $69, but for 36 remedies that’s less than $2 each!! Many of these are ones I use regularly, others are new to me & I’ll be reading up on them more. They list a 5 year expiration date, but they really never go bad if stored properly (out of sunlight & away from moisture).

 

 

The search for the best water filter

This is an EXTREMELY important topic, and I’m fortunate enough to have my own well out in the country, and I do not use any filters. But this is a very FAQ in my Facebook community so I thought I’d share the below info for those looking for more info. I was contacted by an organization with the following info, and I thought it was worthy of a blog post of its own vs just sharing in my closed group on Facebook. I am not able to independently verify this info, it’s up to you to do further research please! Email: “I’m reaching out because I wanted to share our in-depth research on water filters with you. For those trying to reduce plastic waste, one water pitcher filter can effectively replace as much as 300 standard 16.9-ounce bottles. But our team at Reviews.com wondered, which water filters are the most successful at removing contaminants and enhancing flavor?

We set out to answer this by spending months analyzing dozens of popular pitchers and faucet water filters to determine the top six. Our reviewers consulted with industry experts from the Water Quality Association as well as compared filter models, initial cost, and lifetime cost of filters to create a handy guide for consumers.

You can see our resource here: http://www.reviews.com/water-filter/

Because being environmentally conscious is important, we believe this guide would be a helpful resource for your readers looking to reduce their carbon footprint.”

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When asked for the reports on what specifically was filtered out I received this response: “We didn’t test for these contaminants, but rather only chose products who had certifications that certain chemicals will be filtered out. The first How We Found subheader breaks that down in detail, “The American National Standards Institute (ANSI) and the National Sanitation Foundation (NSF) have set water treatment standards, and agencies like the NSF and the Water Quality Association (WQA) test against those standards. A filter had to be certified for NSF-42 and NSF-53 standards by one of those agencies to make our cut.”

Aquagear for example, was NSF-401 certified. So it filters microbiological and pharmaceutical contaminants like bacteria, herbicides, and ibuprofen. (This product also has a link in the review to a list of contaminants from the manufacturer.)

Thecontenders list shows which filters had which certifications. The NSF-53 certification covers a lot of chemicals so the specific chemical will be certified separately— “NSF-certified to reduce copper and cadmium,” for example. But it looks like they didn’t pull data on which specific contaminants each filter covered. “

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A few other resources with info I’ve gathered on this topic. This was from Sep of 2015, 1st gathering of the Berkey test results: https://ecofriendlymamausa.com/2015/09/29/berkey-fluoride-filter-test-results/

Another post from June of 2017 regarding Berkey: https://ecofriendlymamausa.com/2015/09/29/berkey-fluoride-filter-test-results/

Aquasana info: https://ecofriendlymamausa.com/2016/12/20/aquasana-finally-a-water-filter-living-up-its-claims/

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For those of you using water filters, I HIGHLY encourage you to do a before/after test of your water. You should 1st know what is in your water before trying to filter it out. Someone in the group assumed her city water was fluoridated, come to find out when she sent in her tap water for a before/after (using Berkey fluoride filters), there was none to begin with….. If you do test, no matter which system, please share the results with me: ecofriendlymamausa@gmail.com

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