Welcome to Marmee's Pantry

Welcome to Marmee's Pantry

Friday, December 20, 2013

Homemade Pain Relief Salve

I recently posted my recipe for homemade camphor oil and salve. LOVE it. It is good for so many things ~ from colds to pain relief. 

Here's another REALLY great pain relief salve that also contains camphor. If you like that instant cooling effect of some of the popular muscle and joint ointments, salves and balms, you may just like this better than my original oil and salve. And . . . it's easy peasy. :-)

You will need:

~2 ts of grated beeswax 
~1/2 c raw coconut oil (NEVER refrigerate your coconut oil)
~2 ts camphor oil OR crystals
~2 ts menthol oil OR 5-7 drops peppermint essential oil
~5-7 drops eucalyptus essential oil
~various small containers (mini Ball canning jars work well)


1) slowly melt the beeswax and coconut oil together until melted; stirring as it melts to help it along. **You may choose to simply slowly melt them on VERY low heat, or in a double boiler, or at 20 second intervals in your microwave.

2) once it is melted, remove from heat and let cool only about 5 minutes and then add all of your oils and the camphor crystals if you're using them instead of the oil.

3) stir until completely blended

4) carefully pour into your container(s) and let cool. 

5) once it has cooled, rub the salve wherever you need that deep, cooling relief. A little will go a long way, as it will "liquify" when it warms on your skin.

Let me know how much you LOVE this!

Blessings from Ohio . . . Kim<><

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Word-Filled Wednesday ~#103~ What Would YOU Do?

"And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks by night. And angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. But the angel said the them, 'Do not be afraid. I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; He is Christ the Lord. This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger."

"Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying

'Glory to God int he highest,
and on earth peace to men on
whome His favor rests.'"
~Luke 2:4-14

We are so spoiled by movie special effects. Have you ever noticed that it takes more and more zap-boom-pow to keep our attention and get us talking about "how cool" certain parts of our favorite action movies are? The incredible transformation of the Transformers or Ironman . . . the all-to-real looking explosions in war movies . . . special effects that can man people appear and disappear . . . animation that can so look life-like as the damsel's hair waves and moves just like a real person's hair. It's just amazing what the mind of man can conceive and put into action.

Now . . . pretend you lived a little over 2,000 years ago . . . what would YOU do if you were a poor shepherd living the same ol' life day-after-day, trailing the sheep, keeping them safe and well, having the same conversation with your fellow shepherd buddies . . . when . . . all of a sudden! An ANGEL shining with the glory of the Lord appears in the sky above you and starts TALKING to you and your friends?!?! 

WHAT would YOU do?! 

Some of today's hard-hearted cynics might say that they were poor, uneducated and, dare I say what they would say . . . stupid . . . men and boys, that they simply either wanted attention and made the story up or they were "mass hallucinating" (a term that has always made me laugh). Now, the thing is, is that these "poor, misguided" shepherds REALLY DID see and angel in the sky shining with the glory of the Lord; not only that, but THEN, a whole HOST of other angels joined him and sang about this birth of the Messiah

WHAT would YOU do?! 

I know what I would do ~ I would BELIEVE them. And that's just what the shepherds did. Not only did they believe, but they obeyed the word of the angel and followed his directions. Did they have any choice? I doubt that they felt they had any choice. They weren't so non-chalant about blinding lights from the sky, celestial beings speaking to them and numberless choirs of angels singing praise songs about the newborn King and stars leading that way for them. Nope. This was not part of their realm of reality. 

So . . . WHAT would YOU do?!

I'll tell you what they did ~ they followed that star to the stable where they found a frightened young couple lovingly worrying over their newborn Babe. THE King was laying in a feeding trough, wrapping in swaddling (burial) cloths, being warmed by the breath of the farm animals sharing His humble shelter. And when they saw Him, they WORSHIPPED and then they SPREAD THE WORD about all these amazing things that they had seen. Their world had turned up-side-down and they were going tell anyone who would listen.

These simple shepherds were not used to all of this. They knew nothing of special effects, Hollywood was beyond their comprehension. So, this Christmas, as you are possibly reading the Christmas story before you open your presents, as our family does, keep this in mind. When the Bible says that an angel appeared to them shining with the glory of the Lord, they were seeing something beyond their wildest dreams. When the Bible says that they were terrified . . . they were terrified! And then think about . . .

WHAT would YOU do?

Blessings from Ohio . . . Kim<><  

Friday, December 13, 2013

Homemade "Altoid" Mints

Admit it ~ your favorite mints are those little "curiously strong" mints that come in the tins. They are refreshing and somewhat energizing and they are great for clearing your throat and opening your sinuses. And if you're like me, you save those little tins and use them for other projects like homemade healing salve or simple to make homemade chamomile salve.
 google photo
Sorry, I didn't take any photos of my own :-(
Well . . . did you know you can MAKE those little mints, yourself? This little activity could easily become a favorite little gift for CHRISTmas stocking stuffers or office gifts, Easter, Valentine's Day, a little thank you for someone or as a homeschool project. And, certainly, to have for your family.
google photo
You will be so surprised at how easy-peasy this is!
google photo
You will need: 

~cutting board
~rolling pin
~plastic gloves (optional)
~drinking straws (the big ones you have saved from your favorite restaurant work best) or tiny animal or shaped candy cutters
~1 package of gum paste (found in the cake section of your grocery store or Walmart)
~powdered sugar
~cooking oil (optional)
~food coloring (optional)
~essential oil (ex: peppermint, spearmint, cinnamon, wintergreen)
~waxed paper
 google photo

1) Grab off a piece of gum paste about the size of a large egg, knead it in your hands. It will take just a few moments to warm-up and then it will become a nice pliable dough. If desired, you may use JUST A COUPLE DROPS of cooking oil to make it a little more pliable, but not greasy.

2) Once it starts to become pliable, add 2-3 drops of color (if you're using any) and 3-5 drops of your chosen flavor of essential oil (5 if you want them "curiously strong" :-)) and knead all through the gum paste as best you can.

3) Sprinkle just enough powdered sugar on your cutting board to roll the dough onto. Use your rolling pin to roll the dough out to about 1/8" thick. 

4) Now the fun part ~ take your straw or candy cutters and start punching out those little mints. When you have cut out as many as you can, re-roll the remaining dough out again and make as many mints as you can; repeat as often as you need.

5) Once you've cut all the mints you can, sprinkle a little more powdered sugar over the mints and mix JUST enough to coat them and still see any color you've added; this will keep them from sticking together.

6) Put the mints on a sheet of waxed paper and let them dry and "cure" for at least 48 hours, then you can refill those old tins and put them to good use. 
 google photo
7) Enjoy!

Blessings from Ohio . . . Kim<><

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Word-Filled Wednesday ~#102~ Joseph: Trusted Man

". . . and Jacob the father of Joseph, the husband of Mary, of whom was born Jesus, Who is call Christ . . . Because Joseph her husband was a righteous man . . . " ~Matthew 1:16, 19

How could it be, this Baby in my arms
Sleeping now, so peacefully
The Son of God, the angel said
How could it be?

Lord, I know He's not my own
Not of my flesh, not of my bone
Still, Father, let this Baby be
The Son of my love

Father, show me where I fit into this plan of Yours
How can a man be father to the Son of God?
Lord, for all my life I've been a simple carpenter
How can I raise a King?
How can I raise a King?

He looks so small, 
His hands and face so fair
And when he cries, the sun just seems to disappear
But when He laughs, it shines again
How could it be?
~Joseph's Song ~by Michael Card

My husband, THE Man, has an incredible singing voice ~ it is very real and raw. It is an beautiful blend of Michael McDonald and Michael Bolton. I could listen to him sing all day. 

One of my favorites is his presentation of Michael Card's "Joseph's Song." It never fails to bring tears to the eyes of nearly every man (and woman) listening in the congregation; not only because of it's peaceful, lullaby-type presentation, but because of the subject matter . . . as a mere man, how would I handle it if God had chosen me to care for His Son . . . the Messiah . . . the Savior of the world? 

And so we look at Joseph. Joseph, who is nearly forgotten as we recall the events of the first CHRISTmas. Joseph, who didn't leave young Mary for the wolves of judgment to devour when he found out she was with Child. Joseph, who showed incredible faith in believing what was told to him and followed the directions of the angel of the Lord ~ on three different occasions ~ and protected Jesus and His young mother from harm. Joseph, who fretted and worried when Jesus was missing for three days until they found Him in the temple. 

Joseph. Who held Heaven in his arms, who kissed the Infant's tears away, who probably sang the newborn King to sleep, who laughed when He laughed and rejoiced at Jesus' first steps, who taught Him to work with His hands and who probably proudly gave the father's speech at Jesus' bar mitzvah.  

Joseph. Who was undoubtedly a righteous man who treasured being in the House and lineage of David, who must have marveled over the divine appointment made of him as the earthly father of the Messiah. How could it be? 

Obviously, God had His reasons. He found Joseph to be a righteous man and He knew His Son would be in the best of hands.

Blessings from Ohio . . . Kim<><

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Terrific Turmeric

Turmeric. The more I find out about this ginger-look-alike root, the more I'm glad I found out about it. 

I have often said, in previous posts, that my favorite cough syrup is a ts of honey (local, if possible) with turmeric powder sprinkled over the top. 
Stops a cough almost immediately and gives relief for up to 2 hours. But for the last several months, I have been taking this same remedy as a daily "health tonic." If all those old-time snake oil salesmen would have sold a concoction of honey mixed with turmeric, they would have made a ton of money AND they would REALLY have been helping people.

At the health food market where I work, we can hardly keep ANYTHING with turmeric in stock ~ powdered bulk, capsules or tinctures. Those who suffer with arthritis and other inflammatory issues buy it like crazy. It doesn't cure arthritis, but it will (in most cases) greatly reduce the inflammation and once you reduce the inflammation, a lot of the pain goes away. 

Another issue that turmeric helps with ~ especially when blended with local honey ~ are allergies and minor asthma symptoms. Once again, when you open up your circulation and reduce inflammation, you can breathe more fully. Two studies, from 1971 and 1991, show that it is a stronger anti-inflammatory than hydrocortisone.

Other great benefits of turmeric: it helps with digestive issues such as stomach acid and gastritis. It increases mucus production and protects the stomach, which also helps with gerd and reflux. 

Turmeric is a liver aid in traditional Ayurvedic and Chinese herbal medicine. It helps to improve the liver's function and is said by some to decrease the possibility of liver cancer ~ used mostly as a preventative. 

There is documentation, from a 1987 study, that shows the use of turmeric lowers bad cholesterol levels. 

Turmeric is high in antioxidants and is an antibacterial. As an antibacterial, you can use it internally OR as a salve or poultice for such ailments as athlete's foot, toenail fungus, rashes, psoriasis and eczema. 

Since turmeric is anti-inflammatory, lowers cholesterol and slightly thins the blood, it is also used to reduce the risk of stroke and heart attack. **NOTE** Since it is a blood thinner, DO NOT take with other blood thinning meds. 

**ALSO NOTE** Because of it's strong yellow-orange color, use caution when using, as it WILL stain white or light-colored clothes or oohh . . . maybe even counter-tops . . . a "lovely" yellowish color. Eh hum . . . 
. . . just sayin'. O:-)

Blessings from Ohio . . . Kim<><
**Please see disclaimer at bottom of blog page**

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

World-Filled Wednesday ~#101~ He Came as a Baby

"Away in a manger, no crib for a bed,
The little Lord Jesus laid down His sweet head;
The stars in the sky looked down where He lay,
The little Lord Jesus, asleep on the hay. 

The cattle are lowing, the Baby awakes,
But little Lord Jesus, no crying He makes;
I love Thee, Lord Jesus! Look down from the sky,
And stay by my cradle, 'till morning is nigh.

Be near me, Lord Jesus, I ask Thee to stay,
Close by me forever, and love me, I pray;
Bless all the dear children in Thy tender care,
And take us to Heaven to live with Thee there."
~Away in a Manger; Martin Luther

"O, Come to my heart, Lord Jesus,
There's room in my heart for Thee."
~There's Room in my Heart in My Heart for Thee; Emily E. Elliott

"While they were there, the time came for the Baby to be born, and she gave birth to her firstborn, a Son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed Him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn." ~Luke 2:6,7

My all-time favorite Christmas album/CD is Bryan Duncan's "Christmas is Jesus." Not a skip song in the whole bunch. One of my favorite songs from the CD is the medley of Away in the Manger and There's Room in my Heart for Thee. His stirring voice with a choir in the background and those wonderful words simply embrace me with the love of Christ. I can hardly listen to it, year after year, without a tear trying to squeak out of the corner of my eyes.

What is it about this little Christmas lullaby that speaks to me so? 

First, I think that, as a mother, I understand both the amazement of not only giving birth, but also a hint of what that little Jewish girl must have felt giving birth to her first child. Here was a little girl ~ barely in her teens, not wise to the ways of the world, away from her parents, traveling alone with Joseph, who she probably had never been alone with and with whom she had not yet been intimate, and she most likely had to deliver her own Baby because she had no midwife and Joseph would have become ceremonially unclean if he would have helped her. On top of all of that ~ she KNEW she was holding THE KING, Immanuel ~ God with Us ~ she was holding Heaven in her trembling, young arms. 

This precious Baby ~ God's only Son ~ would not be laid upon eiderdown blankets, no, He would be laid upon clean hay strewn in a crude animal's feeding trough, a manger, as His bed. The KJV version of the Bible says that "she wrapped Him in swaddling cloths" ~ every midwife had swaddling cloths prepared at every birth. Why? Because they were grave clothes. Infant mortality was so high that they were prepared to immediately bury their newborn babies if they were too weak and died shortly after birth. So, not only was our Lord born in a barn among farm animals and all the sweet-dirty smells that go with them, nervously laid in a bed of hay, but He was wrapped in a baby blanket meant for His burial. 

And she treasured all these things in her heart. (Luke 2:19)

The second thing that touches my heart about this song is that we know what that sweet Babe, God's Son, was born to do. That precious pink, soft, cooing little Baby was destined to bear our sins. His sweet skin would be pierced for my transgressions and His cooing voice would be raised in agonized prayer while hanging on a cross, begging forgiveness for my sins . . . your sins . . . the world's sins. 

God sent His only Son to us in the least intimidating way possible: a sweet little Baby, in the most unassuming way possible: born in a barn and laid in a manger, to do what no one else could ever do: conquer death, hell and the grave. 

That's what bring tears to my eyes when I listen to that sweet Christmas lullaby ~ knowing that we should never look at the manger without seeing the cross.

Blessings from Ohio . . . Kim<><  

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