Home conditioning

Today I ran out of conditioner. I can’t do without something to help my hair out in the shower because just the act of sleeping gets it knotted and combing out the knots isn’t always the best option. Usually, I favor thick and creamy conditioners because my hair is oily at the roots and dry at the ends and so I went on a hunt for household substances that could fill in until we get to the store. I’ve had horrible experiences with coconut oil and don’t get the fuss. Previous attempts have left my hair soggy with oil and required multiple shampooings to get it all out, which left my hair in even worse shape. Today I opted for a body polish by Thistle Farms. This sounds backwards but it’s really thick and in no way exfoliates, at least not that I’ve found. The jar has no instructions but I once used it on my legs to discover that it coated me in a waxy substance that didn’t come off unless scrubbed at with a more traditional scrub. So I used a pea sized amount and really worked it between my palms before applying it to the tips of my hair. The waxy stuff left a stale, nutty smell in my hair but otherwise it’s nice. There’s no greasy separation, my hair combed out with ease, and it doesn’t leave a reside on anything. I would consider mixing this in with some traditional DIY conditioners for extra creaminess but only go solo in emergency situations, like today.

Natural grey areas?

Does this hippie DIY thing extend far enough that assembling and finishing IKEA furniture counts? It should because I might not have whittled this dresser from a tree a felled myself but it feels like it at this point. I am that invested. The goal is to use low VOC paint, which is very Stinky Pits friendly. I’d love to smash up berries to make my own pigment but I’m pregnant and that’s a little too ambitious when I still have an entire house to unpack, crocheting to learn, and baby shoes to hand sew and only 6 months to do it in.

Scrubbing up

So…Christmas happened and I was really sick and it’s a miracle anything was able to get done with the state I found myself in. I did manage to make up a scrub for my fellow stinkypitter using only what was in my house. I finished off some wonderful homemade jam and had a mason jar to spare so I mixed sugar and coarse salt together and filled up my mason jar about 2/3 of the way. I filled the rest of the jar with extra virgin olive oil, put the lid on tight, and shook that bad boy for all I was worth. Once everything was good and mixed, I added some eucalyptus oil, maybe a teaspoon worth, capped, and shook again. Voila. This was a recipe my aunt gave me but made sure to tell me you could sub in any kind of oil and you don’t have to mix sugar with salt, it can be either or. She likes to add fresh crushed lavender or rosemary to her scrubs and keep them next to the tub. A friend from work said she uses mineral oil and brown sugar. These are now my go to present for baby showers, weddings, birthdays, or just because. Put them in a fun jar and gift with a pretty spoon or bowl and you have a thoughtful, handmade, stinkypitt approved present for pennies!

New Pests

Through lots of salt, borax, baking soda and a hell of a lot of determination, the fleas are on the run. The dog and bunnies have been bathed and conditioned and cleaned into fluffy perfection. We now have a new menace: the fruit fly. We also have the joy of stink bugs invading. This new battle will be well chronicled.

I Want To Break Flea

About a month ago, I wrote about our flea infestation. It’s still happening. We’ve tried almost everything we could find on the Internet that made sense, both natural and unnatural. It’s not the Patchouli and Stinky Pits way to resort to horrible chemicals but when you have five bunnies, a dog, a 7 year old boy and two adults trying to duke it out with a carpet filled with fleas, well, sometimes you get desperate and resort to lung shredding bug bombs. I’m both happy and sad to say the bombs didn’t work. It’s good that I can’t say “RAID IS AWESOME” because it simply didn’t work, even after 3 bombings. I also can’t say that our spray made from herbs and citrus worked either. Salt seems to be the only semi reliable thing, so far. We bought eucalyptus oil to smear around because its highly recommended. I even massaged some into my dog because her flea medication isn’t working and I figured, why not? It’s up on her shoulders where she can’t reach so it can’t be potentially toxic to her. I’ve given her baths daily with dish soap and flea shampoo. Every time entire societies of fleas are washed down the drain and I see no more. I scrub the floors with vinegar and vacuum after treating the carpets. I sweep through the house like a Navy SEAL out to kill little flea Bin Ladens. I even enlisted the heat wave to help. I kept the windows tightly closed and sweated like a snowball in hell while the temperature in our house reached the all important over 90, which is the magical temperature in which fleas can not survive and perish. For a while we lived with a false sense of security. We thought they were gone. And then the floors slowly but surely became a danger zone and no ankle was safe from the biting menace. Tomorrow I plan to Borax everything. This is my last idea before I’m on empty. If anyone has any suggestions that fit the all natural ideals of PASP to help my poor dog or just in general, pretty please with peanuts on top, share it in the comments.

A rescante!

tessamyn

Mint as Deodorant

I’m flipping through a book called 1000 Extra/Ordinary Objects by Taschen instead of unpacking. In putting off my daily duties, (mostly because it’s hot as those proverbial balls and I don’t have a/c) I found one of the objects is mint. Reportedly cattle herding men of Kenya use an herb called leleshwa under their arms to destink by crushing them up a little and holding them under their armpits for five-ish minutes. Mint is what we have available here in the old US of A so it’s what I’m promoting and since it’s hot and I’m sweating, I think I’ll give it a whirl in the very near future.

Tessamyn

Death to Fleakind

I relocated from NC to PA about a month ago. I had been living with my parents and they had a bit of a flea problem. And by bit I mean complete flea infestation that I struggled to keep from my rabbits and dog. My poor dog lost that battle but I did everything I could to get them off of her and keep my living area free of fleas. We moved. I gave the dog 1 bath and she was fine. Every dog is going to be itchy and she’s always been an itchy pug. Hell, we even call her Itchy Squitchie but there would be only the passing flea. Then we went back to visit my family and pick up more of my belongings over the last weekend. Their house was still infested and the poor dog got mauled, again. We got back to PA after a 10 hour drive thanks to some anticipated holiday weekend traffic as walked in the door to total fleamageddon. It’s like they waited for us to leave and launched Operation Carpet Settlement because we couldn’t step into carpet without our ankles being covered by the little chomping sons of bitches. I frantically scrubbed the dog and bunnies with flea shampoo while the boyfriend ran to the store for supplies, like a vacuum. We both consulted Internet for the hippie answer and came up with cedar chips and salt. I opted for salt and spread a thick layer. The boyfriend returned with an all natural spray made up of citrus, eucalyptus, thyme and some other stuff. We followed my salting with a liberal spraying and a vacuuming and there are no flea attacks reported. This all went down less than an hour ago and all is quiet. They might be launching a second assault but we’re ready for total annihilation. If anyone knows any other good flea massacre methods that don’t involve horrible pesticides, please let me know. If you don’t hear from me, they won and I’m relegated to life from the bathtub and kitchen only and they are my supreme overlords.

tessamyn

Dietary Changes

I have been instructed by my doctor to go on a gluten-free diet for a few weeks due to my stomach issues. I’m incredibly sad about this. I love bread. And pasta. And did I mention bread?! Ugh. But I am willing to make this work, as hard as it will be. Especially since my family will not be going gluten free with me. That is probably the hardest thing, watching them eating bread, knowing I can’t have any.

So veggie/fruit recipes are are appreciated!

Stopping Squirrels From Eating Your Bird Food

I love squirrels. I think they’re adorable and don’t mind feeding them along with the birds even if it does mean they’re just as well fed as my herd of indoor bunnies. I have, in the past, tried to deter them with Vaseline on the pole leading to the feeder and getting the corn cons just for them. The Vaseline was funny but decidedly not good for the rest of the wildlife or Mother Earth and the corn was just an appetizer to the main course. This past weekend my old neighbor showed me bird food she buys that has been dried with powdered habañero. Apparently birds are like sharks and can’t taste hot but squirrels sure can. Instead of shelling out extra hard earned bacon for spicy bird feed, make your own by grinding up some of those dried hot Chinese peppers and mix them in with the bird seed in the feeder. It might take a few tries because, as Sponge Bob said “Squirrels is stupid,” but I suspect they’ll get the idea and find something else to gobble down in your garden.

tessamyn