Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Happy Halloween from My Red Riding Hood and Wolf

Scooping out her pumpkin!

We did a fun activity on Sunday called  Trick or Eat.   We had a historical tour around our downtown and stopped at 10 local restaurants for eats! It was a fun community thing! It was a bit longer than we expected. ANika did MUCh better with the length of the tour than her dad did :)


My mom and niece did the tour too- My niece was a vending machine- with (mostly) Healthy options- almonds, raisins, etc.

 Piri as the Wolf as Grandma ! haha.  I wanted her under the covers like in the book, but Anika does NOT want Piri on Furniture!!  And, actually this is our guest bed that Piri is NEVER allowed on so we definitely confused the crap out of her too!

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Fun Stuff

Again, Ive been gone too long.
What have we been up to?

Well, I am making Kombucha at home...
ITs brewing:
We finally got a TV stand. Our Tv has been sitting on my desk from college foreEVER!  I could not stand the wires showing.
The new dark tv stand hides wires and it matches our espresso wood blinds.
At some point we will mount the TV, but we need to get new furniture first (Couches)...and who knows when that will be.
The top is before and the bottom is after.
The speaker still had to sit next to it.
I went out with my girlfriend J Friday night!
I was out until 1 AM! WHOA.  We had a plan and Andrew said he would pick me up when I was ready to come home. He did! He just put sleeping Anika in the car and he put her right back to bed when we got back home. She is awesome.
UM..BIG news. WE BOUGHT a house in NZ. Last night! We had to buy one with the insurance money from ANdrew's house in NZ that was ruined in the earthquake. It has been a stressful almost 2 years since the quake, but its all coming to an end!
IT IS AN AWESOME House. I wish we were going to live in it!!
It will be rented out though. Maybe ONE day I will be able to leave my parents to live there. Maybe.
THIS is the outdoor fire! LOVE.
I started Juicing!  I am loving it and so is ANika (sometimes). I got the Breville from amazon. It was certified refurbished. Joe from the documentary "Fat Sick and Nearly Dead" used this model juicer. 

I also wanted to add a few things from my "Medicine" post.  I didnt talk about garlic tea or Apple Cider Vinegar (ACV).  At the first signs of colds especially respiratory, drink garlic tea!! I make my own but you can buy it.  ACV helps fight off the sickies too!  I would say the garlic tea and ACV are more for adults than kids though :) The garlic tea is much easier to drink hot or warm- not cold. Sometimes I use my leftover garlic tea as the liquid in my crock pot soups. It works great.

I also have a ton of pictures from apple picking from this past weekend. It was so fun. Halloween activities coming up this weekend.
Andrew threw his back out yesterday and he is on bed rest so please pray for him.  My computer also broke and I need to go buy a new one. I think I will go to Best Buy after work tonight. Eh. Not the best timing to spend money on a new computer.

Monday, October 15, 2012


Our Medicine cabinet! Some things were moved from the fridge just for the photo. 
There are also a few things in A's room, but here are the basics.
We will start at the top left, like a book :)

Vitamin C chewables for Anika.  When people around us seem to be getting sick with colds and the flu,  she gets one a day.

Baby's DHA with Vitamin D3-Omega-3 Supplement made from 100% Artic Cod Livers.
It supports brain and visual development. Made by Nordic Naturals.
NExt to that is MY Nordic Naturals Cod Liver Oil, EPA+DHA with vitamin d3.
I also have a bottle of Children's DHA for when the baby's is out. Anika is ready for the Children's.
DHA is short for docosahexaendic.
Anika takes this Daily.
Fish oil has many health benefits, like prevention of heart disease, improving cognitive function and even helping with inflammation. In really high doses, it can help with depression.  (We don't really use it for any of those reasons, yet). If I were to get PPD, I would definitely take a lot of this though.  
DHA is Important for pregnant people to take because it is essential for neurological development and early visual development. I took it daily while pregnant with Anika. I try to take it daily now, but I often forget. I do eat fish AT LEAST once a week though.
Omega-3's are also used to make breast milk and women are often deficient of Omega-3's after pregnancy, so I continued to take it and some passed through my breast milk, although not much.
I started giving Anika a dropper full of the Baby's DHA when she was a couple months old. 
According to the American Pediatrician Association, adding DHA to the diet of pregnant women has a positive effect on cognitive development, language and may even reduce the risk of allergies, prevent pre term labor and lower the risk of precalmpsia.
Omega-3's are a healthy fat which any baby needs. Did DHA really play a role in Anika's  language? I don't know. Many studies say it helps, many say it does not make babies smarter. So you can decide that for yourself, but its something we take. 
Oh, I just use the dropper to drop it in her mouth. She acts like its candy. For me, no way. I add it in a smoothie or something. ha.

Silver sol- The natural antibiotic. Also, great immune support.  We all take this at the first sign of a being sick or when we have been around a lot of sick people.  I also have put it on cuts and scrapes.  I put it in Anika’s ear when she had that one mild ear infection. We never would have known she had it if she wasn't already at the dr.   We have used two different brands of silver sol: Biotech and Natures Sunshine. 

Next to the Right is Coconut Oil.
Coconut oil has So many uses. IT is great for cuts, scrapes, rashes, skin moisturizer, cooking, toast, diaper rashes (cloth diaper friendly), etc. I'm going to just link THIS if you want to see 52 uses.

Next Row Down.
Oil of Oregano (OOO). An herb. The oil is different from what you use for cooking, although it does smell the same. The oil is very potent. It provides many health benefits: antiviral, antibacterial, antifungal and antiparasitic. It can reduce pain and Inflammation and fight off infection. It improves respiratory health and strengthens the immune system.
What we use it for?  At the first sign of a cold. We would give it for other illnesses too if she had them.
A few weeks ago EVERYONE around us was sick. Coughs, runny noses, etc.
I started treating us all with immune boosting supplements, like this. Anika sneezed for a few days, woke up in the night stuffy one night...and that was that.  That was the extend of her "cold".
My SIL uses Olive Leaf which is used very much the same ways as this.
I have the potent essential oil of oregano which is not to be taken orally (some people do, but they are under more guidance and supervision).  I use that and DILUTE IT A LOT with olive oil and rub it on her feet.  You can see the jar of oil- that is olive oil and just a couple drops of the OOO. We also have the oral option. I just give her a drop mixed with water. I take it the same way, but take a lot more, obviously.
There are other uses as well.

Herb.  We take this as a tincture and what you see with the white label came from my local farm. They made it! Echinacea helps boost the immune system as well. It has also been studied for anti cancer effects.

The one next to that is Echinacea and Goldenseal in one.
Goldenseal is an herb.
It is yellow and it STAINS!  It kills many kinds of bacteria and it strengthens the immune system. Its been called a natural Antibiotic. It has been used to treat UTI's. I thought Anika had a UTI once and the natropath suggested this if she had one, but she didnt. I just needed to strip (Deep clean) her diapers! ha. the urine smell was just strong her in her diapers and she was fine.

Elderberry   An antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and antiviral remedy.   It stimulates the immune system and is great for respiratory infections, colds, etc.  We use this at the first sign of a cold (we have only used it once so far).  I have never had the flu or the flu shot, but research shows that Elderberry syrup can relieve flu symptoms and can reduce the severity of the flu.  The flu doesn’t worry me. My parents have never had the flu shot and haven’t had the flu in at least a decade.  I think exercise, eating healthy, getting plenty of vitamin D, sleep,  and washing your hands is a good way to protect yourself. 
Vitamin D- Research also shows that getting enough Vitamin D is more effective at avoiding the flu than the flu shot.  Anika takes one drop of Biotech vitamin D every day except in the summer. She is outside so much in the summer, she gets enough vitamin D naturally from the sun. If  I thought she was getting sick in the summer, I WOULD give her the drops as well. I also take 10,000 IU of vitamin D 5 days a week, in pill form.   I would take more if I felt like I was getting sick. Anika takes the brand Biotech vitamin D and I got it from our natropath, but its available on amazon as well.  This isn’t just a hippie dippie thing, even Anika’s MD pediatrician recommends she take vitamin D.

ProbioticsI take a pill form 5 days a week. I keep my supplements at work on my desk. I take Nutrition Now PB8 Acidophilus.  Andrew takes a probiotic with colustrum. One of his doctors suggested it for his IC condition.
Anika takes a powder version probiotic we mix in her food: HLC neonate. 
A Harvard study states that probiotics can treat gastrointestinal issues, delay the developmeont of allergies in chilren and treat and prevent UTI's, any yeast (Candia) infections.  If you take an antibiotic you should always take a probiotic as well to repalce the good flora and bacteria antibiotics kill.  Many people get yeast infections after antibiotics- thats why.  Probiotics shorten stomach bugs as well. 
Probiotics inhibit the growth of harmful bacteria and support a healhty immune system.

We have the complete Hylands Kid's Kit- Homeopathic Medicine.
Arnica stick for bumps and bruises. Andrew used the arnica on his sore muscles after his big rugby game last weekend.
 Aconitum napellus-for colds and fevers (we havent needed it)
Arnica tablets for brusing and muscle soreness
Belladonna- fevers and inflmations (teething)
Ferrum phos. -fevers and inflammations- havent used.
Pulsatilla- colds and runny nose (havent used).

And, there you have it.
We are lucky and we havent really had any illnesses and had to use much of this stuff.
Anika has had western medicine.  She was on antibiotics because she had an infected boo boo.
We didnt really try to treat it (even with homeopathic remedies) until it was too late. We used manuka honey and some silver. The first MD said it wasn't bad enough to need antibiotics. Then, it didnt heal for another week, so we did a round of oral abx.  Even our natropath said there are times that we do need antibiotics and it was one of those times.  Anika was never phased by her infected boo boo, but it looked bad.
We have regular MD's, so that is where we got the antibiotic script.

I am not a professional, but I learn from trained professionals.  The information I passed on is what I have learned from them and from my own research. I suggest everyone does their own research :)
I am going to a class in November on herbs for women's health and I am excited about that.

Knock on wood, I haven't been sick since last Dec. Not even a cold. I hope I don't jinx myself.
Anika has had a 12 hour thing here and there, but nothing really.
She also doesn't drink pasteurized cow's milk which is linked to a lot of respiratory colds and sickness.  She does eat cheese though and ice cream when she can get her hands on some! haha
While I'm at it, I may as well just get this fun fact out of the way while you already think I'm crazy.
We havent had a microwave in 6 months!

I was sick of cleaning it and it was on our counter and I hated it taking up space, so I moved it to the basement.
THen Andrew told me about how it rearranges the molecules of our food. He showed me a few things,  and I was ike- ya, we dont need it. HA. He said He has used it once in the basement for leftovers. I use the oven and stove top at home. I really don't miss it at all.
BUT, I have used the microwave at work when I need to heat my lunch up.
There is ONE more thing I want to share, but ugh, I think I would need to drink half a bottle of wine do divulge it on the internet. Its another "natrual" change I have made.
Man, I wish I had the nerve to post about it, but I dont...not yet.

Tuesday, October 9, 2012


I have been Writing a blog post for the past 1.5 hours!
I still don't have it done so I'm giving up for the night. Ill finish it tomorrow. Its full of information.
 So, I leave you with photos from our weekend.

Watching daddy play rugby.

Our Fall CSA started. Yummy organic veggies and herbs from a farm right up the road!  So excited. We made a crock pot soup so far with lots of the veggies.

We went to the Fair.
 She rode a real pony, but didn't like it.

Played golf with daddy.

Oh man, she is a riot. She is obsessed with poop right now. Likes to point out my butt, Andrew's butt, Piri's butt, her dolls but, etc.  and then say poop. She also likes to inspect her dolls and ME to make sure we have undies on. When she sees undies, she likes to say the word over and over. She is asking me WHY?  That is fun.  She is just a hoot and I think she was put on this earth as our entertainment. ha.

Be back tomorrow night, I HOPE!

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

The time I nodded my head yes I was pregnant...

Today (like many days) I walked to the post office from work.
My local health food store moved locations and is now RIGHT across the street from the post office! This is great for me. After I crossed the street, I looked down at my phone. I kind of saw a guy walking near me. Then I heard "Ashley Maiden Last Name"  and I turned around as I was in the door of the health food store and met eyes with him. I smiled and said hi.
It was a guy that my dad  knew.  I haven't seen the guy in a decade, at least.
He had a big hiking back pack on...downtown.
He looked me up and down and said "Oh Wow, You are Going to be A MOM! Congratulations!"

I was so shocked, that I just smiled and nodded my head yes.
Maybe I was embarrassed too.  He said "That's Great" as I walked into the store and as soon as my back turned I just started laughing. 
I knew this dress was not the most flattering dress, but wow!
I bought the Vera wang dress at Kohls for $7 when I was newly pregnant with Anika. I thought it would fit while I was pregnant and it worked great that summer. Its not a maternity dress though.
Well, Its now in the trash.
This is a small town area.  So, I called my dad to tell him if he hears rumors I'M pregnant, Its not true.
I just didn't know what else to say in that moment.

I was going to skip the gym tonight, but after that I made myself go!

I have 5 new books on my night stand I REALLY want to read.
I also got sucked into a show on Netflix or Hulu called Switched at Birth. Its from ABC Family. Yup,watched the whole series. Now, I'm watching Pretty Little Liars.
Its sad. Really sad. I'm watching more tv now that I don't have cable.
I do watch Parenthood on Hulu the next day after it airs.  IT IS MY FAVORITE SHOW on tv. I love it.
I also watched the Fringe season premiere on Hulu this past weekend.  We have a Roku that hooks into our tv, so it streams shows on line through the tv. 
I miss things like Bravo and E! but I find plenty to watch  with what I have :)

This weekend I went to my friend's annual Swap Party. You bring clothes, shoes, hand bags, house goods, beauty products, etc. that you want to get rid of.  This was the biggest one I have been to and I brought home some new items!  Two dresses, a basket, snow pants (for Andrew), yankee candle tarts for my warmer, books, etc.   Anything that people don't want at the end of the night gets donated!  I always have a hard time coming up with things to bring, but each guest is supposed to bring 10 things. A lot of people brings BAGS of stuff.   A lot of the clothes and jackets were VERY Nice, but also WAY too small for me! Last time I went I got an awesome ring.
The party was at my friend's house in Salem, MA. Andrew and Anika came with me, but they went out with my guy friend (the host's husband) and their 6 month old boy while us girls did the swap party, ate great food and drank wine!  The guys were out longer than we expected. I guess they got a lot of attention... and its not normal to see Two  handsome men with two beautiful babies out to dinner on a Saturday night. I was surprised that people were surprised since it was a urban area and it IS 2012! They came back around 9:30 and Anika came right into the party, up to a wine glass and said "Mummy's wine!"  ugh.  I don't even drink wine around her so Andrew obviously has taught her that to be funny. ha.  Andrew said she reached for the waitress' necklace and said  "necklace" as she grabbed it! hahha. She can ID and say earrings, ring, watch, bracelet, and necklace. She loves jewelry!
She really cracks me up with the things she says and does.