One of my favorite things about Spring is the flowers.

Especially when you have enough to cut and put in a mason jar on the dining room table. They make a house a happier place to be. Here are some pictures of our first table bouquet of the year. Can’t believe how early our flowers are blooming this year! We are so blessed that the previous owners of our house took the time to plant all kinds of flowers all over our property! From late March til late August there is always something new blooming! They were amazing gardners. The plants are pretty hardy too, since magically Bran and I have not managed to kill them yet (even with the crazy hot summer we had last year!)

 

What are your favorite things about spring?

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Series: Please stop complaining about your water!

This is post is for all of the people who have asked me lately if the water in my town will cause them to sprout a third eye (or something similar in ridiculous-ness) and those that complain about the cost of the new Reverse Osmosis treatment. And also, for everyone that just has something ‘against tap water’. Yes, I am getting up on my soapbox (but this is the only place I am allowed to do that so give me a little bit of a break and hear me out.)

Did you know that 3.575 million people die each year from a water related disease?

 (That is equal to the population of Los Angeles.)

Except, drinking water chlorination and filtration have helped to virtually eliminate these diseases in the U.S. and other developed countries.

So why does a child die every 20 seconds from drinking contaminated water?

If we have the technology, why do 884 million people lack access to clean water? (By the way, that is equal to the U.S. population… times 3.)

How can you complain that your water bill went up (even though you can get more than 10 gallons of water for less than a penny) when people living in the slums of third world countries often pay 5-10 times more per liter of water than wealthy people living in the same city.

Did you know that by taking a five-minute shower you use more water than a typical person in a developing country slum uses in a whole day?

Turns out the average person in the developing world uses 2.64 gallons of water a day.
The average person in the United Kingdom uses 35.66 gallons of water per day.
The average person in the United States uses between 100 and 175 gallons every day.
Also, It takes 1.32 gallons of water to make just 1 bottle of water.
To make just the meat of one-quarter pound hamburger, 2900 gallons of water are used.

How about the fact that the water and sanitation crisis claims more lives through disease than any war claims through guns.

Or maybe that diarrhea, yes diarrhea, remains the second leading cause of death among children under five globally. Nearly one in five child deaths – about 1.5 million each year – is due to diarrhea. It kills more young children than AIDS, malaria, and measles combined.

In just one day, more than 200 million hours of women’s time is used collecting water. This time is equivalent to the number of hours worked by WalMart, UPS, McDonald’s, IBM, Target, and Kroger employees over a week’s time, combined.

 So much work put into trying to collect water (safe or not) for their families. But yet, you complain:

1. That the chlorine gives the water a bad taste, but that is what protects you from a water-borne illness.

2.  The pipes leading to your house may deposit hard minerals into your water damaging your appliances and leaving an after taste in your mouth, but that is what keeps you from having to walk 3 miles for water.

3.Water prices may have gone up, but compared to your income, you still pay less than a person in a developing country trying to survive on $3 or less a day.

You joke that the city water will kill you one day, but water around the world kills more than 4000 children TODAY.

 This is why I defend our city’s water because we are blessed. Not just because we have a Reverse Osmosis Treatment Plant or because it is my job to tell you the water is great, but because someone right now in another country would gladly drink the water you think is disgusting straight from the tap.

If you are interested, these are other posts I have written about water.

(Disclaimer: I have no problem with valid concerns about water quality. Also, this site is where I gathered most of my information.)

WFMW: Out with the Old, in with the Homemade

works for me wednesdays

Recently I have been looking for ways to replace my expensive beauty products with ones that I can make at home and save a lot of money. The added bonus of my search is that the recipes I have found (mostly through Pinterest, where else right?) are all natural alternatives. Good for the skin, bank account, and environment; doesn’t get much better than that!!

I took the recipes that I found and after trying them I tweaked them all a little bit to fit my tastes. Here is what I have come up with so far:

(At the end of this post I will link up to the original recipes)

Miracle Mask:

2 tablespoons of honey
1 teaspoon of cinnamon
1 teaspoon of nutmeg
1 teaspoon of brown sugar

The consistency should be like a thick paste. After it’s all mixed, apply the mask to your face and let it sit for 30 minutes. Wash it off with warm water, scrubbing softly in circular motion for exfoliation. I made a large batch of this and put it in a washer baby food jar so that it was ready for whenever I wanted to use it. It adds a lot of moisture to your face, which is great for these winter months. If you warm it up just a little bit it not only feels really nice on your skin but spreads a little easier.

Night Time Emollient Cream:

½ cup coconut oil
2 tsp. Vitamin E oil
A few drops of your favorite essential oil

Melt the coconut oil (coconut oil melts very easily so don’t overheat it) and mix all the ingredients together. At first they may start to separate (like a science class experiment) but if you keep mixing as the oil cools eventually they come together nicely. This is by far the best lotion/cream I have ever used! We put it on Ade too now instead of her Johnson’s baby lotion. She is super soft and I don’t have to worry about her having a reaction to any chemicals or fragrances. It works great on your face too. At first it feels a little greasy, but soon it soaks into your skin and leaves practically no residue! I am hooked!

Homemade deodorant:

3/4 a cup of baking soda
1 – 2 tablespoon of coconut oil (depending on how you like it, powdery or more of a paste)
1 teaspoon Vitamin E oil
a few drops of Tea Tree Oil (a natural antimicrobial, I also use a drop or two of this in my laundry because of this property)

Again carefully melt the coconut oil and mix all of the ingredients together. I pressed it into another washed baby food jar (these things are coming in handy) and just get a little bit out with my fingers to apply it. I really like this recipe, but it isn’t for someone who works a fairly physical job. If you tend to sweat a lot, you probably aren’t going to like it. I love the way it smells though!

Original Miracle Mask recipe.
Original Emollient Cream recipe.
Original Deodorant recipe.