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

Shaving with Olive Oil

When I first began my adventure in shaving, I was 12 years old. I’ve always had horribly hairy legs and pits, so I was truly grateful when my mom finally handed me a razor and a can of pretty pink shaving cream and sent me into the bathroom. 30 minutes and much blood loss later, I emerged silky and smooth. I was ecstatic! That happiness only lasted about an hour, when I jumped into the swimming pool and I was pretty sure the skin on my legs was going to melt off. From that point on, I have had a love/hate relationship with shaving.

Nothing (and I thought I had tried everything) would calm the itchy, red bumps that would appear on my legs and under my arms after I shaved. And forget about shaving everyday. I had to wait at least 3 days to shave again or the irritation was worse, which didn’t help my ever growing hair problem. I looked like Sasquatch with a rash.

I have tried all the different brands of shaving cream and gels, different razors, and creams to rub on after I shaved. I’ve waxed, sugared, and burnt the hair off with depilatory creams.  And finally I had enough. I told my husband I was no longer shaving and he cringed with horror.

 

I figured what was the point of shaving with something that was just going to cause me more money and more irritation, so I went on the search for something different. I enlisted help from my friends (because isn’t that what all of us do) and I found that several ladies used hair conditioner to shave with. I had never thought of that before, so I gave it a go. It worked great! But as with most “great” things, there comes some disappointment.

When I started my endeavor of being more earth-friendly and body friendly, I discovered that my conditioner was chock full of harmful chemicals and things that I really didn’t want to put into my hair, much less on my body.

So again, I went on the search for something better. After looking online, I found that lots of people shave with olive oil. It’s a lubricant, so it won’t cause irritation and it helps keep your razor nice and sharp as well.

I poured some olive oil in a small cup and went to test it out.

I showered first, then poured a little puddle of olive oil in my hand and slathered it onto my leg. It went on nice and smooth and I began to shave. It worked great! I’m not sure why I was so hesitant about it, but I was.

There have been no issues. No bumps. No redness. Only a slight amount of irritation afterwards, but I rubbed some lotion (unscented) on and it went right away.

I do have one concern/issue with using the olive oil and maybe it was my fault, perhaps I used too much. The bottom of the shower was slippery afterwards and my husband damn near killed himself. Next time I will use less and I will make sure to rinse the shower out really well.

This post was longer than I had anticipated, but I felt that I needed to add back story. I will keep you updated on how shaving with olive oil goes. Right now, after only one use, I am very satisfied with the results. Harmful chemicals aren’t being leached into my body and my husband can happily run a hand over my legs without cringing.

~Jessica