the neti pot is a lifesaver

netipot.png

This year has been a tough one for my sinuses. In February, I was onto my fourth (you read that right…4th!) sinus infection of the season. Every time I thought it was clearing up, it would just come back – with a vengeance! I went to the doctor with the first one. When the first two antibiotics didn’t work, they put me on a steroid. When that didn’t work, they tried a different antibiotic. Eventually, it cleared up, but I’m convinced that was a coincidence. Later, when the 2nd, 3rd, and 4th infections came, I didn’t even go to the doctor.

Several years ago, at the insistence of my mom, I bought a neti pot. I should note I’m not a swimmer. Why? I don’t like the feeling of water going up my noise, and I can’t seem to stop it from happening. So even though this neti pot was sitting in its box in the bathroom closet, I had only tried it twice. Both times, I had been pretty sure I was going to drown. When my fourth infection came on, my mom asked me again to use the neti pot. I had reached my breaking point. I was ready to try anything – and that included that crazy little pot that I was certain would drown me in the bathroom. I got it out, re-read the instructions, and gave it a go.

Within seconds, I felt like I was drowning again. Then, a light bulb went on in my head. The instructions specifically said to keep your mouth open. I remembered reading it, but I honestly didn’t think about it. I tried again, this time with my mouth open, and voila! It still felt crazy and weird, but at least I didn’t feel like I was drowning. The next few times, I had to consciously remind myself to open my mouth.

After just one use, I woke up the next morning able to breathe! When you’re sick, they recommend using it two to three times a day, so I did just that for the next week. For ongoing maintenance (especially if you have allergies like I do), they recommend using it once a day. I’ll admit – it stills feels funny every time I do it, but I survive. And let’s be honest – if I can do it, ANYONE can! Oh, and the best part? It’s natural, and it clears up allergies, infections, and other sinus issues with no antibiotics or steroids!

my journey to homemade solutions

myjourney.png

For a LONG time, I’ve been the person that said, “I want to use more natural products. I want to save money and make my own stuff (when it’s easy!).” But I’ll be honest – I’m lazy and just never got around to it. Well, the time has come, friends! I recently bought homemade body butter and lip balm from a friend, and that was the nudge I needed.

Since then, I’ve ordered my first set of doTERRA oils (I was using essential oils before, but they were the cheap ones from the grocery store); stocked up on washing soda, Borax, coconut oil, and shea butter; and made a trip to the store for bottles and jars! I’ve already made laundry soap and oil rollers for arthritis and calming (for us and the dogs!). I’ve also just made a new bottle of calming spray for my dog, and I’ve ordered the necessary ingredients to make baby wash for my son. When our dishwasher soap, hand soap, and other household cleaners run out, I’ll be making those too!

I’m excited for the benefits of all-natural solutions, and I’m excited for the cost savings. And truth be told, because I’m a total nerd, I’m also a little excited about getting all of my stuff organized and labeled! I’ll be posting my recipes and stories as I go, so check back often.

calming spray for dogs

calmingspray

My oldest dog used to be the sweetest, happiest dog. As he’s aged, however, he’s losing his sight and hearing, and he’s become arthritic. Understandably so, he’s a bit defensive and seems to be nervous almost all the time. New places and people are scary, and he tends to stick as close to me as possible, so he doesn’t get lost.

To help ease his anxiety, I did some research on a calming spray for him. Essential oils are wonderful aromatherapy for us, and because the dog’s sense of smell is SO MUCH BETTER than ours, they are even more powerful for them! After experimenting with a few different blends, I came up with a great combination. It’s easy to make and easy to use! I simply spray it on a bandana and tie it around his neck. This way, the spray goes everywhere he goes! You’ll need a 4-ounce cobalt or amber glass spray bottle. Not sure where to get one? Check here.

How to Make It:

In a clean 4-ounce bottle, add:

Shake gently to mix, and shake gently before each use.

*Note: every dogs responds to different oils in different ways! Sometimes, what works for one dog might not for another. Other great oils to try are chamomile, wild orange, and vetiver.

what are essential oils?

If you’ve ever stopped to smell the roses, then you’ve experienced an essential oil. Essential oils are naturally occurring compounds found in the seeds, roots, bark, flowers, and other parts of plants. They give plants their distinctive smells, and they play a role in pollination. Essential oils have long been used for food preparation, beauty treatment, and health-care.

So now you’re thinking…what is this compound, and why should it matter to me? Essentially, they’re molecules that change quickly from their original solid or liquid state into a gas a room temp. Just open a bottle of an essential oil, and you’ll immediately smell the fragrance – even from across the room. Their interaction, then, with the olfactory sensors in our nose make them ideal for aromatherapy.

Over 3,000 varieties have been identified, and they can be used for a wide range of emotional and physical wellness. Each oil can be used alone, or they can be mixed into various blends for even more powerful and effective benefits.

To give you just an idea of their uses, I diffuse them for health benefits in our bedrooms, mix them to make deodorizing and calming sprays for our dogs, and apply them topically for a variety of health reasons. The possibilities truly are endless!

Source: doTERRA