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  • Making Rose Water – Enjoying the Benefits

    Making Rose Water – Enjoying the Benefits

    By Laura D. Field of Potpourri of Health – June 14th, 2018

    Making Rose Water – Photo by Laura D. Field

    It is that time of year again, when the roses are in full bloom, enriching the landscape of our yard. My favorite roses, that were given to me by my husband a few years back on our anniversary, were that of three Knock Out Red Rose bushes. Although I have other wild roses in our gardens, these are my favorite, as they provide the most beautiful, large red flowers that I truly adore.

    The one thing that I do to keep these gorgeous flowers returning every spring and flowering through the fall season, is I prune the roses as they get to where they are fully open, or just about to. Always before a rain storm that could damage them as well.

    In addition, I cut they back each year, with one year having to cut it completely down to the root due to something that destroyed them (or so I thought). My husband couldn’t believe that I cut them back so far, worried that they would not return. Honestly, I had no idea what would happen, yet cutting it back, brought health back to their roots. Of course, I added diatomaceous earth to the soil once I cut it back. I think that helped them greatly, while keeping many bugs at bay.

    Making Rose Water – Photo by Laura D. Field

    Two of the things that I do with rose petals is that of making potpourri of just rose petals, sometimes other flowers, but my most favorite is that of using them to make rose water.

    Rose water is amazing!! My youngest daughter once asked me what she could do for her face, because for some reason her young adult years, she was getting acne again. Such fun!! Just when we think we are over the trauma of pimples showing up unannounced, they arrive again in our adult years.

    So, in order to help her, I suggested that she try rose water. My girls have acclimated to my unusual ideas, or more in line of what would normally be suggested from the over priced, chemically based products on the market.

    Knock-Out-Roses are not as fragrant as other roses, but they are just as beautiful while still providing lovely skin and health benefits. The more fragrant the rose, the more senses are awakened, providing you more therapeutic benefits.

    Rose water has many benefits that consumers are not aware of:

    • Due to its anti-inflammtory properties, it can help reduce facial/skin redness due to irritated skin, dermatitis and eczema.
    • In addition, it helps to get rid of acne. SCORE!!
    • In speaking with my daughter the other day, she said her face has never felt softer. She is now sold on a very natural remedy that can be purchased over-the-counter, as well as easily made at home (recipe to follow 🙂 )
    • It is a wonderful skin cleanser, removing dirt and oils that accumulate on our faces throughout the day.
    • After a day in the sun, working in the garden, after a hike in the woods, after a day at the beach, or basically every day, simply applying it to your face can be refreshing as well as aid in softness and a healthier skin tone while hydrating your skin.
    • It has anti-bacterial benefits which help in healing scars, cuts and wounds. Even after you decide you “must” eradicate that irritating, unsightly pimple, be sure to add some rose water with a cotton ball.
    • With its antioxidant benefits it will regenerate and strengthen healthy skin.
    • It is also known to help with wrinkle prevention, as a result of the above mentioned benefits.
    • Puffy eyes? Since I keep my rose water in the refrigerator, it is a fast solution: soak cotton balls in the rose water and place over your “closed” eyes, and chill-out for a spell. It is okay to tell the world to stop for a few moments for you to enjoy this pampering effect.
    • Lets talk about our hair: Rose water has proven to me in providing a very soft conditioner effect, leaving my hair soft and manageable vs. dry.
    • In addition the softness, I have noticed that my natural red highlights are enhanced. My husband often times exclaims, which i am using this as my conditioner, how amazing my hair looks.
    • Unlike commercial hair conditioners, it does not leave a heavy, greasy residue. That alone, is worth it to me.
    • One other benefit: You can consume rose water!! YES, it contains vitamins A, C, E, and B, and is said to be beneficial to aid in depression as well as sore throats.
    Making Rose Water – Photo by Laura D. Field

    Now one thing I do NOT do with my rose water is add glycerine. Some sites will share adding it to your rose water skin treatments. This is something I do not do, as glycerine is something that I am allergic to. It is the source of skin issues. Basically, it can irritate my skin and if i have any open areas, glycerine will cause redness and burning. So, I avoid it in all my personal skin care products.

    For facial moisturizer, I add a little rose water to my coconut and argon oil mix. Not a lot, just enough for a few days applications.

    For after outdoor weather activities, after work stress relief, spritz some cool rose water on your face. Or, if you freeze in ice cube trays, take one out to rub over your face.
    NOTE: I rarely wear make-up, so this is easy for me. I don’t have to worry about removing any make-up. But still a great refresher after you do remove it.

    For a cleanser, I use it straight after washing my face gently with a washcloth dampened in warm water. Since I keep it in the refrigerator, the coolness closes the pores nicely and without any burn. Some add lemon juice, and that irritates my skin, so I also avoid that in skin care.

    Making Rose Water – Photo by Laura D. Field

    For a moisturizer after shaving, rough elbows, after being in the sun or after a relaxing bath, rose water mixed with almond oil can be a nice soothing remedy for any potential risk for dry skin or an improvement without chemicals.

    For a bath: Since I contend with chronic pain, I add 1/2-1 cup of rose water to 1-2 cups of epsom salts. Of course, I do not have an endless supply of rose water, but during the months when I harvest my roses, I take advantage of this benefit.

    For a tea or drink: Since it has vitamins, I do drink what I make, as I know that there are no chemicals added. But, I can add it to a smoothie, drink it straight from the refrigerator, or warm it up to make a tea. For tea, I use a cup of the rose water, add a fresh stevia leaf, and sometimes a sprig of thyme and let it steep for 20 minutes. Simply delightful!!

    Tea made in the sun: Take a handful of rose petals and put in a jar filled with distilled water for two days in the sun. An enjoyable, healthy and naturally made tea.

    Okay, how do I make this amazing rose water? It really is the most simplest recipe.

    1. Basically, pull all your roses that are ready to be pruned off your bush, and prior to them fading away. You want LIFE in your rose!!
    2. Place in a sauce pain appropriate for the number of rose petals. I tend to use my largest one with a handle
    3. Cover the rose petals with distilled water.
    4. Then bring to a boil and stir until all the color has left the petals. Depending on your heat level, it will take 10-20 minutes, where I find that 10 minutes works for me.
    5. Now it is time to strain out the spent petals, and pour into a mason jar or heat resistant glass container of choice.
    Making Rose Water – Photo by Laura D. Field
    Making Rose Water – Photo by Laura D. Field

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Making Rose Water – Photo by Laura D. Field

     

     

    That’s it!! Pretty easy, don’t you think?

    I hope you find this to be resourceful while enjoying your roses completely. Not only for visual therapy, but also for how it responds to you and your needs.

    NOTE: You can use any roses. I will be pulling my white roses later today, to make another batch. I will freeze these in an ice cube tray, to take out to toss in a bath, if someone gets a sunburn, or simply to melt to use in my tea or smoothie later in the year.

    NOTE: Homemade rose water has a life span. It will not last a year, which is why I will freeze as ice cubes. It will last up to 2 weeks in your refrigerator, sometimes more, but it is always best to err on the side of caution, since many health issues arise due to mold. Similar to veggies that are going bad after a being in the fridge too long, toss out any unused rose water after 2 weeks into your compost or pour down the drain.

     

     

    QUESTION one might ask: What about store bought rose water? These are often made with alcohol and glycerin, which allows them to last longer. I don’t appreciate these ingredients on my skin, which is why I prefer to make my own. A brand that you trust, that is made with quality resources, I think are fine. It is a personal choice.

    QUESTION one might ask: Can you use store bought roses? Personally, I don’t see a problem with it, if you are not consuming them. I am never sure how roses are grown that are sold on the retail market, but the aroma would certainly add to the therapeutic effects of your relaxing bath or hair rinse. This again, has to be a personal choice.

    Enjoy YOU and the beauty that surrounds you.

    love,

    Laura – Blogger and paid Freelance writer

    Potpourri of Health www.potpourriofhealth.com
    Freelance writer at www.reflectivetapestryoflife.com
    Seamstress consultant at www.davinadawnsewing.com

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  • Laura’s Natural Deodorant – Recipe

    Why Natural Deodorant?
    By Laura D. Field of Potpourri of Health ~ April 27th, 2018

    A few years back I started to make my own deodorant. It was due to underarm irritation. Although, for the most part, I didn’t have tons of this type of sensitivity previously, either due to age or Lyme disease, the ingredients were having a hay day with my body. I tried a different brand, then another, and finally, I couldn’t get anything that would prevent my underarms from burning and having uncomfortable irritation. So, it was either go without, or simply make my own.

    I researched various recipes, then created one that actually worked for me. Everything about this blend is natural, and costs far less than what is on the market. No chemicals!! No “perfumes” other than 100% therapeutic grade essential oils. And the bonus, is that I am not drawn into the “coupon/sale” craze of mass retailers promoting their products.

    For my personal use, which I have found to work fabulously, where I can often times skip a day without any issues, is as follows:

    • 3 Tbsp. Solid coconut oil
    • 3 Tbsp. Tapioca Starch (or cornstarch)
    • 2 Tbsp. Baking soda
    • 9 drops Ylang Ylang (pronounced “ee-lang, ee-lang”)
    • 8 drops Frankincense

    Once I was able to experiment with the recipe, to create a formula that works for me, I began to double this recipe. With my doubling the recipe, the batch will last me 6 months. I would recommend the basic recipe first, to determine if it works for you, before you begin doubling it for yourself. I also recommend using organic products.

    Although it worked well for me providing immediate underarm healing and body odor protection, I still gave it a year before doubling the batch. I did that so I could experiment with measurements and choice of essential oils.

    Essential Oil Choices and Why:

    • Ylang Ylang – First, this was one of my most favorite essential oils when I first began using oils. It is very earthy and grounding for me. The two main reasons, outside the grounding benefits I enjoy, are the anti-seborrheic and antiseptic benefits. Ylang-ylang essential oil has proven to me, to reduce the inflammation and skin irritation, resulting no further irritation. The antiseptic properties, are provided in a gentle manner, protecting my underarms with inhibiting microbial growth while providing a natural disinfectant.
    • Frankincense – Another essential oil that I adore the scent of, along with its benefits of calmness, it is also an oil from biblical times that was used for healing and cleansing. A few of the many benefits I appreciate in using it in this deodorant, is that it is beneficial in preventing acne (some people do get little cyst like acne under their arms), along with helping with inflammation. It is a healing oil, which I use for many purposes.

    Both of the above essential oils are not always combined together, but I have found that the mixture provides a natural scent that I enjoy with positive benefits for my underarms. My husband always tells me I smell great and asks what I’m wearing, often times hours later, including the days I might not have used it.

    Although it looks like cottage cheese once it is made, it is really a creamy product that goes on quite nicely. You do need to apply with your fingertips. It has a smooth texture and not oily as one might assume with the use of coconut oil. I do recommend keeping it at room temperature, away from the air conditioner and away from the direct sun or heat.

    NOTE: I do not, at this time, promote an essential oil company. Although I do expect this to change, I do know that i will not promote any MLM company’s. No offense to those who enjoy them, I have simply chosen other sources where I am confident in their processing without the costly overhead to consumers.

    May you enjoy feeling fresh and clean in a natural way.

    ~ Laura

    Laura D. Field – Blogger and paid Freelance writer

    Potpourri of Health: www.potpourriofhealth.com
    Freelance writer: www.reflectivetapestryoflife.com
    Heirloom Seamstress & consultant: www.davinadawnsewing.com
    Seamstress Blogger: www.seamstobeme.davinadawnsewing.com

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  • Elderberry Syrup & Tincture – Viral Immune Support

    Elderberries – Photo provided by Pixabay

    This winter’s flu epidemic is widespread across our nation, while the flu shot did not have a positive efficacy in keeping people safe from the virus as promoted. As we all know, the flu shot is a guesstimate of what type of virus might be floating around when flu season actually arrives. There is no promise one will not get sick.

    I used to consume large amounts of vitamin C from September through April to support my immune system, while reducing the amount in the summer. Our family managed not to get sick. This worked for us, along with a healthy lifestyle. Still there was no guarantee one would not get ill, as colds and influenza are viral infections.

    More recently, as I have been working my way towards reducing supplement costs and dependency, I discovered an excellent option for overall immune support, with preventative cold and flu benefits. It is made with fresh or dried elderberries, which can be harvested or purchased, and easily made into a syrup. Once the syrup is made, I store it in the refrigerator, but if made in large batches, it can be frozen in ice cube trays to later put into freezer bags. It has a great flavor that even my husband can attest to, while also sharing that when he had a sore throat, it actually made him feel better within 30 minutes.

    I take a spoonful twice a day, where as my husband takes it in the morning unless he is run down from his day during this season of viruses, where he will consume another spoonful before going to bed at night.

    The European culture has a long history of using elderberries as a medicine as their remedy for flu and cold symptoms. Elderberries have high levels of antioxidants, Vitamin A, B, and C, along with potassium and calcium. Although they can be consumed in their natural berry state, when combined with other herbs and local honey, one is able to make elderberry syrup with additional benefits.

    Although my husband and I consume it as liquid medicine, 1 spoonful at a time, this syrup can be put on toast (as my oldest daughter does), on yogurt, ice cream, etc., as an enjoyable flavor while boosting one’s immune system.

    Please NOTE: When selecting elderberries, please be sure to harvest the blue or black berries, as the red berries are poisonous!!!

    Since my grandson is less than 2 years old, I asked my daughter if she was interested in having some for him, without the honey, that is highly recommended that a young person not consume until they are about two. Some share the age is one, but to be safe, consider 2 years the best age, unless your pediatrician supports your use of honey earlier.

    Don’t have time to make your own syrup or tincture? I recommend the Gaia brand.

    Health benefits of the ingredients in my Elderberry Syrups:

    Elderberries:
    – Minerals: iron, potassium, phosphorus, and copper
    – Vitamins, such as vitamin A, B, and C, as well as proteins and dietary fiber
    – Beneficial organic compounds that function as anti-inflammatory and antioxidant agents in the body
    – Other great benefits: Aids in digestion, improves heart health, improves respiratory health, boosts immunity, controls diabetes, improves bone health, improves skin health and reduce inflammation.

    Cinnamon (Ceylon is the healthier option):
    – Positive impact on blood pressure
    – Lowers fasting blood sugar levels
    – Helps to raise HDL (good) and lower LDL (bad) cholesterol levels
    – Helps to reduce insulin resistance
    – Contains anti-fungal, anti-bacterial, and anti-viral properties
    – Anti-oxidants and protection from free radicals
    – Helps neurons and motor functions for those who suffer from neurological symptoms
    – Anti-carcinogeneic “effects”. It cannot cure, but through animal testing, has proven to slow the growth of cancer cells.
    – Anti-inflammatory – helpful for certain headaches, arthritis and other inflammatory response pain.
    – Boosts circulation
    – Helps manage female health concerns
    Please NOTE: Elderberry syrup is not the answer to these conditions, as it is created to help boost one’s immune system. But knowing that cinnamon has these benefits, more in the line of anti-fungal, anti-bacterial, anti-viral, etc,. makes it an excellent herb to have in one’s elderberry syrup, while fighting any viral condition.

    Cloves:
    Minerals in cloves include calcium, iron, magnesium, phosphorous, potassium, sodium, and zinc.
    – Vitamins include vitamin C, thiamin, riboflavin, niacin, folate, vitamin B6, vitamin B12, vitamin A, vitamin E, vitamin D, and vitamin K.
    – Better digestion
    – Anti-bacterial
    – Anti-carcinogenic
    – Liver protection
    – Diabetic control
    – Bone preservation
    – Anti-mutagenic properties
    – Boosts immune system
    – Anti-inflammatory

    Honey – Local and Organic:
    – Contains Vitamin C, calcium and iron (healthy sweetener)
    – Helps with weight management
    – Boosts energy
    – Improves endurance and athletic performance
    – Anti-septic
    – Anti-oxidant
    – Skin care and wound healing

    Rose Hip Powder:
    – Contains Vitamin C, A, E, and vitamin B-complex
    – Contains Minerals: calcium, iron, selenium, manganese, magnesium, phosphorous, potassium, sulfur, silicon, and zinc.
    – Anti-oxidant properties
    – Eliminate/reduce free radicals
    – Helps lower cholesterol and helps to control diabetes
    – Boost ones Immunity
    – Aids in digestion
    – Improves skin
    – Improve circulation
    – Enhance bone health

    Elderberry homemade syrups and tincture

    Recipe 1: Laura’s recipe for Elderberry Honey Syrup (for those over 2 years of age)

    Ingredients:

    • 1 c fresh (1/2 c dried) organic elderberries.
    • 3 cups of filtered water
    • 1 organic cinnamon stick (3-4″ in length) OR 1 tsp cinnamon powder. I prefer the cinnamon stick 🙂
    • 3 organic cloves
    • 1 c raw local honey
    • 1 Tbsp. dried rose hip powder (optional, although I use it for the additional benefits it provides)
    • NOTE: Some recipe’s use 2 Tbsp. organic ginger root. I don’t, only because my husband and I are not fond of the flavor, but if this is your preference, then that is a excellent choice)

    Let’s get started:

    1. In a saucepan, place your water, berries, cinnamon and cloves in a saucepan.
    2. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer for 30 minutes.
    3. Now that the berries have had a chance to soften, releasing all their nutrient benefits, smash the berries to release the remaining juice.
    4. Strain the mixture, then mix in your rose hip powder.
    5. Allow to cool, then add in your honey, and mix well.
    6. Pour into prepared, sterile jars, and refrigerate.

    Should last 2-3 months in the refrigerator. For my husband and I, this recipe lasted us about 6 weeks.

    Please NOTE: To boost your immunity, without the symptoms of a virus (cold, flu, etc.) take at least 2-3 times a week. We take it once a day in the morning, but add a second dose if we have been exposed to sneezy, breezy germ spreading individuals who are out and about, or when we feel a sore throat coming on.
    Adult dosage is 1 Tbsp., and a child’s dosage is 1 tsp.
    When experiencing cold and flu symptoms, one can take more frequently, such as every 2-3 hours as needed.

    Recipe 2: Laura’s recipe for Elderberry Vodka Tincture (Adults ONLY!!)

    Ingredients:

    • 1/2 full pint jar of fresh (1/4 full of dried) organic elderberries.
    • 1 organic cinnamon stick (3-4″ in length)
    • 1 organic clove
    • 1 tsp. dried rose hip powder (optional)
    • If using dried elderberries, cover elderberries with filtered water.(should be to the 1/2 point of your jar)
    • Vodka, enough to fill jar within 1″ of the top of your jar

    Directions

    1. Fill a jar 1/2 full with your fresh elderberries (or 1/4 full with dried elderberries).
    2. Add remaining dry ingredients
    3. Pour vodka over ingredients to within 1″ of the top of the jar.
    4. Put a lid on the jar and place in a dark cabinet for 8 to 12 weeks.
    5. Shake the jar every few days.
    6. When the infusion process is done, pour into a bowl to crush the berries.
    7. Strain the berries and herbs from the vodka.
    8. Pour strained tincture into a clean jar with tight lid. I prefer tincture bottles with a dropper which I find great for storage as well as for travel.
    9. Store in a dark area, away from the sun.

    Great to use when a cold, flu, cancer sores, or other viral infection rears its nasty head.
    Use 1 tsp, no more than 3 times a day.
    Please NOTE: This recipe is not sweet!! But, for those who cannot have honey or glycerine, it is a alternate option.

    Some people might experience a burning sensation due to the alcohol, if that is the case, simply mix your 1 tsp. in water to tone that down.

    Tinctures have a longer shelf life, due to the alcohol, providing a nice back-up for various viral conditions during the non-cold and flu season, as well as for those who need to have something that can be easily transportable.

    Recipe 3: Laura’s recipe for Elderberry Glycerin Syrup (for those under 2 years of age)

    Ingredients:

    • 1/2 c fresh (1/4 c dried) organic elderberries.
    • 1 c filtered water
    • 1 organic cinnamon stick (3-4″ in length)
    • 1 organic clove
    • 1/2 c food grade glycerin
    • 1 tsp. dried rose hip powder (optional)

    Directions:

    1. In a saucepan, place your water, berries, cinnamon and clove in a saucepan.
    2. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer for 30 minutes.
    3. Now that the berries have had a chance to soften, releasing all their nutrient benefits, smash the berries to release the remaining juice.
    4. Strain the mixture, then mix in your rose hip powder.
    5. Allow to cool, then add in your food grade glycerin, and mix well.
    6. Pour into prepared, sterile jars, and refrigerate.

    1 tsp. for immune support once a day. Every few hours when experiencing symptoms of the cold and flu.

    Please know, that although I love taking care of myself and my family’s health as naturally as possible, I also support the benefits of allopathic medicine. Physicians are not our enemy. A good physician wants us all to avoid pharmaceuticals whenever possible, while we support a healthy lifestyle with natural choices, yet sometimes we really need to benefit from their help in keeping ourselves and our children healthy. Never, ever feel that you are bothering your physician if you, your spouse & family members, or your child’s illness concerns you.

    Some helpful guidelines of when to call the doctor for your child:

    • Under 3 months: Any fever of 100.4°F or higher, even if he shows no other symptoms of illness. If the fever develops after office hours or on a weekend, go to the emergency room. Young babies have a limited ability to fight illness because their immune system isn’t fully developed. Young babies can’t tell you if they are really sick and there are some serious bacterial infections that they are more prone to, like kidney infections, blood stream, and pneumonia.
    • 3 to 6 months: A fever of 101°F or higher.
    • Over 6 months: A fever 103°F or higher.
    • Any age child: 

    • A fever measuring between 104ºF (40.0ºC) and 105ºF (40.6ºC)
    • Fever in a child over three months of age without an obvious source (accompanied by common cold symptoms, diarrhea, etc)
    • Fever more than 3 consecutive days with an obvious source of infection
    • Any fever without an obvious source of infection
    • Any fever and sore throat that lasts more than 24 to 48 hours
    • Signs of dehydration: dry mouth, a sunken soft spot, or fewer wet diapers (less than one every 8 hours)
    • Your child has a fever and pain when urinating
    • Your child is lethargic, refuses to eat, has a rash, or is having difficulty breathing
    • Your child has a febrile seizure
    • Your child has a fever and has recently returned from a trip abroad

    Seek immediate medical help if your child has:

    • A fever and is under 3 months old
    • A fever of 105ºF (40.6ºC) or higher
    • A fever and obvious breathing difficulties
    • A fever and is having trouble swallowing to the point where she is drooling because she is unable to swallow her own saliva
    • A fever and is still lethargic or listless even after taking fever-reducing medication
    • A fever accompanied with a headache, stiff neck, or purplish patches or tiny red spots on the skin
    • A fever and severe pain
    • A febrile seizure lasting 15 minutes or more
    • A febrile seizure and he’s having trouble breathing afterwards
    • A fever and has compromised immunity (i.e. if the child is on chemotherapy for cancer):

    Be well while boosting your immune system,

    ~ Laura

    Laura D. Field – Blogger and paid Freelance writer

    Potpourri of Health www.potpourriofhealth.com
    Freelance writer at www.reflectivetapestryoflife.com
    Seamstress consultant at www.davinadawnsewing.com & www.seamstobeme.davinadawnsewing.com

    RESOURCES:

    https://www.organicfacts.net/elderberries.html
    httos://www.organicauthority.com/health/11-health-benefits-of-cinnamon.html
    https:///www.organicfacts.net/health-benefits/fruit/rose-hips.html
    https://www.organicfacts.net/health-benefits/ health-benefits-of-honey.html
    https://www.emedicinehealth.com/flu_in_children_health/page4_em.htm

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  • Ticks, Ticks, are Everywhere!! – Prevention

    By Laura D. Field of Potpourri of Health – May 18, 2017

    How quickly we can squish an ant, swat a fly, spray a hornet, zap a mosquito. We squish that ant because it is crawling on the counter, swat the fly because it annoyingly flies annoyingly around us, spray the hornet with such force as if we are riding the world of them all, and zapping mosquito’s due to their ability to bite with a vengeance along with their non-stop buzzing sound. But, the reason we can tend to these insects is because they are readily visible, make noises and we know the damage they can do, whether to our home, family or own personal well being.
    Yet with ticks, we are faced with a gentle, crawling creature that in its nymph stage is barely noticeable, while as it gets larger, has the ability to numb your skin like Novocain before they begin the process of boring into your skin to seek refuge and sustenance within your body. If we are lucky, we can spot the tick making tracks towards its destination, more often in warm dark areas on your body, such as your groin, hairline, underarms, etc.

    Here are some options to prevent their unwelcomed presence, but first, please do not stop living due to the fear of these insects. Go hiking, camping, walking, fishing, hunting, gardening, etc. Just be vigilant in your efforts in preventing them from taking hold and damaging your life.:

    Before and after being outdoors in areas with a potential risk, consider:

    1. Wear light colored clothing, as it is easier to spot a dark tick against a light colored garment.
    2. Tuck your pant legs into your socks to provide a tight seal
    3. Spray your clothing with Permethrin, which is a safe tick repellent that can be purchased in hardware and grain stores, Wal-mart, and a variety of other stores also carry it. Spray on your hat, your outer clothing, shoes, etc. DO NOT spray directly on your skin. There are Permethrin products specific for skin application.
    4. Have lint rollers around. These are great at doing a quick tick check, as the ticks will get stuck to the sticky portion. You could also use shippers/packing tape or duct tape that is wrapped around your hand with the stitcky-side out if you do not have lint rollers around.
    5. Place your clothes into the dryer for 20 min. when you come in from the outdoors so that it can kill any that are not seen
    6. Take a shower to wash the ticks in hiding down the drain.
    7. Make sure full body checks are done after returning from a day in the gardens, camping, hiking, hunting, etc.

    Repellant Options;

    1. As mentioned above, Permethrin can be used on your clothing before heading out, including hats and shoes. Permethrin will last through 4-6 wash cycles, dependent upon the agitation within your washer.
    2. When using Permethrin: read the directions for applications, but in layman terms, spray about 6-8 feet away from the garment, in a non-windy environment (your garage or on a day that it is not windy). Let it dry for about 2 hrs., and you are good to go. If you have the time, place your treated garments in the dryer to further adhere to the fibers to your garment. There is no smell, and will not stain your clothing.
    3. There are specialty clothing that is specially treated with Permethrin, and others designed specifically to prevent ticks from crawling up, that can be found at outdoor sport centers.
    4. DE (Diatomaceous Earth) is a safe product to use around your gardens. Be sure to purchase the food grade. This is also safe for animals, yet with cats, since they are more sensitive, scruff your cats neck as you apply the DE, as well as rub on their belly (if you have a cat that will allow you to do this). Be very careful not to get in their eyes, nose or mouth. Keep it on for 24 hrs then shampoo after.
      1. I personally love this product and use it holistically, as well as use around my gardens to help keep other pesky insects at bay.
      2. The benefit of use around your herb and vegetable gardens is that you know it is a safe pesticide that you will later consume through the food you grow.
      3. DE can be purchased online as well as at your local grain stores.
      4. Consider wearing a mask, when applying to your pets or gardens (mostly when it is windy out) to avoid inhaling too much)
    5. Plant Lavender around your walkway and gardens. It is not only a great insect repellent (including ticks) but smells quite lovely while providing a protective shield.
    6. Plant Eucalyptus around your home for additional protection, but be mindful of pets.
    7. Plant Lemongrass around your gardens as well, since ticks do not like the smell of citrus. This does well in containers and smells quite lovely, which makes for a lovely display within a potted floral arrangement or by itself. We have a few that I place around the gazebo areas.
    8. Create natural sprays from either citrus fruit or essential oils
      1. Citrus Spray: Slice 2 lemons (or limes). 2. Boil 2 c. of water. 3. Reduce water to a simmer and place in your citrus fruit for 1 hour. Strain, cool, and then put into your sprayer. Once cooled, it is ready to be safely used on you, your children, your yard and pets.
      2. Mint Spray: In 1 c. of water, add 2 drops of 100% pure peppermint essential oil. Place in a spray bottle and it is ready to use in the same manner as the citrus spray.
      3. Lavender Spray: Note: This is a great mosquito repellent as well and can be placed in decorative bowls around your home, indoors as well as out. Take ¼ c. of distilled or filtered water and add about 30-40 drops of 100% pure Lavender essential oil. Stir slightly and put into a spray bottle or place in decorative bowls around the home.
        1. NOTE: you can adjust the amount of lavender based on your personal preference
        2. You can use this for bed linens, night wear, pillows, etc. to repel insects and ticks while also providing a calm nights rest.
      4. Place dried lavender around your home. Better yet, consider lavender sachets. They not only keep the ticks at bay but also spiders and other pests. The BONUS: if place in the warmth of sunlight, it will freshen you home preventing the use of toxic air fresheners, while also providing a relaxing environment.
        1. I make these for my personal use as well as sell to clients
      5. Keep your yard clean of debris, trimming tall grass and removing dead leaves. Please know, that this is not going to keep them from hiding, but will give them less of a chance to hitch a ride onto your pant leg and quickly crawl into hiding.
        1. Some claim that keeping your yard clear of tall grass or debris is efficient, and although it might work okay in a yard with no trees, shrubs, gardens, etc., one really needs to be attentive to all the surrounding plants within your yard.

    Although the tips shared are ones we use, they are not all inclusive. There are many options available, yet we have found the above to be the most effective and most natural.

    My hope in sharing is that others can prevent the risk of infection that causes the Lyme disease that infects people very differently. There is NO cure, NO preventive immunization, just treatment that can be life long.

    Enjoy the outdoors and what nature can offer. We live in a gorgeous world!! All we need to do is be safe.

    Laura – Chronic Persistent Lyme Disease patient

    Laura D. Field – Blogger and paid Freelance writer

    Potpourri of Health www.potpourriofhealth.com
    Freelance writer at www.reflectivetapestryoflife.com
    Seamstress consultant at www.davinadawnsewing.com & www.seamstobeme.davinadawnsewing.com