10 Uses for | Baking Soda | That Will Change Your Life

As you are probably well aware, baking soda (sodium bicarbonate: NaHCO3) is a magical compound-when mixed with vinegar, it fizzes up and kids of all ages love to watch it go boom!

However, what you might not know is that baking soda has many more uses than basic volcano demonstrations.

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1. Toothpaste- replacement for regular toothpaste. I like using regular paste and oil pulling, but in a bind, 2tsp of baking soda and a drop or two of clean peppermint essential oil mixed with enough water to make a paste works great! It’s a little salty to taste, but sure gets your teeth fresh and clean:)

2. Shampoo- I actually use baking soda and baking powder instead of regular shampoo. I like the way it makes my hair feel after I use it. Typically 2 TB of baking powder with 1 TB of baking soda does the trick. I put it in a cup and add warm water to make a paste/rinse. Then put it on my scalp and massage until there is a bit of a lather. Slightly diluted Apple Cider vinegar works as a fantastic conditioning rinse afterwards. Rinse your hair in moderate-cold water until the smell is gone and you can no longer feel the grainy texture of the soda. You can use straight soda or powder. The powder tends to thicken up hair and accentuate curls, while soda cuts the grease. As baking soda is abrasive, it is important to use this method 3-5 days apart or your hair will become extremely dry and tender.

It is important to be extremely careful with your hair and to make sure that if you do decide to use baking soda instead of shampoo, you condition, condition, condition, and massage your scalp. If you don’t, your hair will get dry and the blood flow to the hair follicles will stop, causing negative hair growth.

Conditioning treatments with olive oil, honey, avocado, or coconut oil work wonders for dry hair and scalps. Also a couple drops of rosemary, or peppermint, or lemon, or lavender essential oils make wonderful additions to any conditioner or shampoo. Just remember to rinse out any oils before about 30min.

3. Toilet bowl and surface cleaner- baking soda makes a toilet bowl sparkle! I was out of regular cleaner and pour a little sodium bicarbonate in the bowl and scrubbed with the brush. After a couple rounds of cleaning like that, the bowl was the whitest I had ever seen it. As it worked in the toilet, so it works in the sink basin, on counters, and applied dry to the carpet (let it sit then vacuum it up!)

4. Tarnish remover in silver and aluminum- be careful with this as excessive cleaning and polishing will do more than just remove the tarnish, but it works to really add a bright shine to the metals if done properly.

5. Bread Leavening Agent- if you ever wonder why there is baking soda in a baking recipe or why it’s called baking soda, this is why.

6. Baking Powder- baking powder we buy at the store is baking soda, cornstarch, and a powdered acid compound. But if a recipe calls for baking powder and you don’t have any, mix a 1:1: ratio of cornstarch, baking soda, and

7. Antacid- completely dissolve 0.5 tsp of baking soda in water

– do not give to children younger than 6, someone who is pregnant, someone who is on prescribed medications, or someone who is on a low-sodium diet,

be sure to talk to a doctor before using this just to be safe:)

– for more information visit armandhammer.com

8. Itch relief from poison ivy, Oak, and sumac- mix with water into a paste and apply- be careful it may dry out skin

9. Deodorant- put a container of open top baking soda in the fridge, in a room, almost anywhere and it will deodorize the foul stenches lingering in the air

10. Drain cleaner- for those of you who LOVED the vinegar and baking soda experiment at the science fair, do the same thing down your sink drain and if there was a clog from natural buildup, it will (in most cases) clean itself out!

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Baking soda is truly an under-appreciated household item. I hope this helps inspire you to not fret the next time you are out of your go to product. Or possibly even save a little money if you need to pinch some pennies.

 

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Historical Sewing|Chemise and Drawers

As I explained in my first historical sewing post, this skill is something I have wanted to learn for very long time. I had done a preview of the mid-1800’s styled chemise and drawers a couple weeks ago and wanted to wait to give the project revue until I had worn the clothing a couple times and tested the strength of the stitching.

Now that that is done, I can give a truthful analysis of the pattern, the technique, and the practicality of this project.

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To begin my historical sewing endeavors, it seemed logical to start from the inside and work out. So the first piece I made was a chemise, or lightweight under dress similar to and often used as a night gown.

I used the Simplicity Pattern 9769 as a basis for both the chemise and drawers. A couple modifications were made to the design due to personal preference. I used a lightweight, soft, off-white muslin. The entirety of the project is hand-stitched.

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Full front view

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Front drawstring adjustable neckline with overlap

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gathered banded, gusseted sleeves

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Back view

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The drawers I made are split, as is consistent with the time era. They are trimmed, at the bottom of the legs, with cream lace that I found at a thrift store. It was a bit of a challenge attaching the lace because it was about a centimeter short and getting the hem even was rather tricky. But overall, the fit was rather comfortable, and the chemise tucks in rather nicely to preserve modesty.

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Full side view

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Front view, gathered waist

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Lace trimming

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Un-tied drawstring back closure

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Inside back view of front waistband detailing

I was very nervous to start an entirely hand sewn article. However, it was a relatively simple pattern that didn’t take as much time as I thought it would. I probably spent about 10 hours max on both pieces. I used double thread for most of the seam work and it seems to be quite durable, I’ve slept in the chemise and there has been no fraying, ripping, or feeling it would fall apart. I am quite pleased with how this turned out.

If you are interested in completing this project for yourself, or would like to commission a set, let me know and I can share more details regarding these garments:)

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“To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under heaven…a time to rend, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence, and a time to speak…”

Ecclesiastes Chapter 3

The Benefits of Essential Oils

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On this journey to strengthen our physical bodies in order to better serve others, I want to introduce the use of essential oils.

Essential oils are what cause aromatic properties in various plants. These oils have medicinal and healing properties. Different oils have different properties. Certain oils can be astringent, while others are soothing, some extract toxins, some can stop bruising, and the list goes on.

Some of the most commonly known essential oils include tea trea (melaluca), peppermint, lavender, oregano, orange, and lemon grass. These are very oils that you can find in almost every grocery store that sells supplements. However, these oils tend to be the most commonly polluted. Many companies are not careful in the method through which they process their oils and people that are new to the world of homeopathic healing might not know this. Subsequently people can become extremely ill and those under treatments with these oils can go even toxic. That is why it is VERY important to purchase clean oils that are diffused through the air and applied to the body.

However, if you are using peppermint oil to rid your basement of rats, low grade oil is cheap and will do the job just as well as any higher grade product.

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Below is list of my TOP 5 Essential Oils  and how I use them for healing:

1. Frankincense Oil (although it is rather expensive): eczema relief, antiseptic, astringent, aids PMS relief, stomach pain relief, digestive system cleanser, stress relief, eases coughing,

Frankincense should NEVER be used during pregnancy

2. Lavender Oil: great for soothing restlessness, easing sleep, calming nerves, relieving headaches, easing pain

3. Tea Tree (Melaluca) Oil: astringent, antiseptic, cleansing acne, aids alertness, great for stimulating scalp, helps stop dandruff

4. Helichyrsum Oil: eczema relief, supports liver, anti-spasmodic, expectorant, anti-microbial, anti-septic, regulates nervous system

CAUTION should always be used as Helichrysum is an anticoagulant

5. Peppermint Oil: aids alertness, refreshing, eases stomach aches, helps calm indigestion, scent is an unappealing deterent for rats

I hope that this list gives you and idea on where to start with your use of essential oils.

If you have any questions, feel free to ask them in the comments:)

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Historical Sewing

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Stock-Image-Separator-GraphicsFairy21For many years now, I have had dreams of being a talented seamstress. I have been sewing almost my entire life, but it has only been in the last couple of years that I have really gotten excited about improving and making beautiful articles. The more I have been getting excited about sewing, the more I’ve yearned to learn about Civil War Era costuming.

As of this week, I can finally say that I am a beginning costumer. After almost two years of procrastinating, for fear for messing up, I took the plunge. I can’t wait to share the details of my first project once it is completely finished. Until then, this teaser will have to suffice.

God bless you in your endeavors today!

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The Beehive Challenge

Today, September 23rd, 2014 marks the start of a new approach for this small little blog. Today is the launch of something that has been in the works for quite a while, but it has never felt right to start until today.

And now for a drum roll please!!!!

I Introduce to You!
 (linked above)

This idea has been something that I’ve been toying with for quite a while. A couple years ago, the LDS church came out a publication recognizing 100 years of Girls’ Camp. In this publication, they listed some of the goals that girls of the early 1920  accomplished through the Beehive Girls Program (similar to the original design of Girl Scouts or Campfire Girls).

Girls would learn skills in any area that interested them and would come together to discuss what they learned, share their knowledge, delight in the joys of womanhood (WO-MAN-HO), and fellowship together to give praise to the Lord.

As the times changed, so did the program. Eventually it was no longer relevant to the needs of the girls in the world and so it became a memory to the few left who participated. The program was replaced by the Personal Progress program (which most LDS ladies today have grown up with). Personal Progress has also taken many forms. Today it focuses mainly on finding your relationship with God and making your own path to Him through the of learning life skills and offering service to others. Where this Program is wonderful and commendable in its own right, there seems to be something in regards to the completeness and well rounded person that is idealized in the goals of the Beehive Girls. Where Personal Progress is a wonderful tool (I encourage mothers, daughters, grandmothers, wives, etc. to look at the lessons and continue to work on new goals as it truly does have a way of focusing our lives around our Lord), there is something lacking in the general gaining of life skills that are of a more practical and self-sufficient nature in the adult world.

The goal of this challenge is to be an aid used for learning skills that have been forgotten through the last century. The tasks set in this challenge are not meant to be a hindrance or distraction from anything of the busy lives of women today, but rather a tool to help guide a restoration of practical skills. Although some of the skills listed in the book are dated (most people don’t need to know how to drive a team of horses, or have a need to kill dozens of house flies because they are ever present), there is still much we can learn from the skills that these young women once learned. Wouldn’t it be nice to know which how to dress wounds and clean bandages? Wouldn’t it be easier to understand babies if you knew what each cry meant? Wouldn’t knowing how to sew save you tons of money by mending an article that ripped or a child outgrew rather than going to buy a new one when it is perfectly salvageable?

That is the purpose of this challenge- to see how much you can learn.

If our call as women is to be as the one described in Proverbs 31, then let us take the challenge and mark how we can improve our world. Confidence grows when people are enabled. What better way to grow your confidence than to be well rounded and capable?

“Strength and Honour are her clothing; and she shall rejoice in time to come”
~ Proverbs 31:25 KJV

May the Lord Bless you today.