In this lesson, we reviwed the basic requirements for “commonsense preparedness.”
We went over a basic preparedness list that included:
- Water storage
- First aid supplies
- Transportation needs
- Personal needs
- Homeschooling resources
We also discussed food sources for long expeditions, including pemmican and even made a batch.
This was actually an activity from an earlier lesson that we didn't do. But it was mentioned again this lesson, so we thought we would give it a try. To make this, we used natural turkey jerky, nuts and berries (ground fine in the blender) and then mixed with coconut oil (rather than fat) ~ not an original recipe for sure. It tasted just like jerky, nuts and berries and everyone liked it until I refrigerated it and the coconut oil solidified.
We also talked about raising chickens for food (instead of pigeons as Mrs. Robinson did). We talked about what we could feed chickens rather than commercial feed: unground grain, bugs, table scraps, dried milk, ground egg, greens and vegetables.
The Use of Herbs
In this lesson we discussed “the use of herbs to relieve symptoms of common illnesses. Herbs do not heal, neither do foods, medicines or doctors. Only God heals.” We feel that He has given herbs for the use of man, so we learned how to harvest and store herbs as well as how to use them. Here is what we made:
Homemade Cough Syrup
We made an infusion of echinacea, wild cherry bark and licorice root by boiling the herbs in 1 quart pure water down to 1 pint. Then we strained the herbs and added honey. It tasted like a really strong, really sweet herbal tea. I refrigerated it and I hope we don't ever use it.
A tincture is made by soaking herbs in an alcohol or vinegar base. I was conflicted over giving a child an alcohol based tincture until a friend suggested that it could be dropped into a hot tea so the alcohol will evaporate out. The herbs are allowed to sit in the alcohol/vinegar base for 2 weeks and the jar is shaken daily. Then the herbs are strained out.
This spicy hot Warming Salve works wonderfully by warming cold toes and feet on chilly days or nights.
- 12 g cayenne pepper
- 1 T mustard seed
- 1/2 T ginger powder and ginger root
- 1 tsp ground black pepper
- 4 T coconut oil
After we had the oil, we melted it with a small amount of beeswax to give it a salve consistency.
I think the color is so pretty and it works wonderfully. I put some on my cold toes to warm them up last night.
GOOT is a garlic oil salve made using garlic, olive oil and coconut oil in a 1:1:1 ratio (3 T Garlic crushed or pulverized, 3 T olive oil, and 3 T coconut oil). I blended it in the blender to make it smoother and didn't strain out the garlic pieces because they were so small, but next time I will. Because of the coconut oil in this it did firm up in the fridge. It smells so good (and garlicky).
I have never been fond of a commercial hand sanitizer, though, because of the harsh chemicals in them. So, I went on a hunt for the common ingredients listed on the label of a common brand. The main one happens to be ethyl alcohol, also known as pure grain alcohol. Walmart sells it in their pharmacy - $10 for a 1 pint bottle (16 oz or 473 ml). Or you can buy Everclear at the liquor store - $14 for a 750 ml bottle (that's about 25 ounces).
From what I could find online (and on the back of the Germ X bottle), I needed at least a 62% alcohol concentration for the hand sanitizer to be effective. We figured that at 95% alcohol by volume, that if we used 75% alcohol, we would have an effective hand sanitizer. Here is what we did:
- 3/4 cup ethyl alcohol (this is what kills the germs)
- 1/4 cup (less 1 T) vegetable glycerin (keeps your hands from drying out)
- 1 T aloe vera gel (another moisturizer)
- Few drops of jojoba oil and Thieves essential oil (scent, moisturizer and antibacterial/antiviral properties)
Using a 3/4 c. ethyl alcohol to 1/4 c. other ingredients gave us a desired ratio. We put it in a spray bottle and labeled it. From what I read, it has to take 15-30 seconds to dry to be effective. Ours passed that test with 3 quick pump sprays. After the smell of the initial alcohol whiff wore off (that stuff is strong), our hands smelled just like the essential oil we added - soft too.
Note: this stuff should not be used by children without adult supervision ~ keep out of the reach of children and read the material safety data sheet for more info. Honestly, I'm not sure how I feel about using this on a regular basis because our skin is our largest organ and absorbs everything we put on it. I much prefer (whenever possible) to use soap and water to wash our hands with.
Clove Orange Craft
Click here to see other lessons we have done to "Prepare and Pray" for times ahead.