Archive for December, 2012

My 3 Favorite Cold & Flu Remedies

// December 25th, 2012 // No Comments » // Uncategorized

As a big family, “the bug” can knock us over like lined up dominoes. If one of us is coming down with {whatever’s going around} on Tuesday {Stamp Night} or Sunday {family dinner night}, a few days later someone else is catching it, too.

At the Haasienda, I keep a few Go-To home remedies to help combat the bugs. Sometimes my remedies help lighten the virus’s effects, sometimes they help us avoid the bug altogether. Sometimes, they don’t do diddly.

My first choice remedy is the homeopathic aconitum napellus (aconite). It’s the best defense in the first few days of an illness—four tablets under the tongue at least four times a day. ~Try not to eat or drink anything for at least fifteen minutes before and after each dose. That lessens its punch.~ Aconite is one among hundreds of homeopathic remedies. Whatever’s bothering you, there’s a homeopathic to help. Before using the remedies, do some research on Google and get a reference book or two (like Everybody’s Guide to Homeopathic Medicines.) These aren’t one-size-fits-all magic pills, so please do your due diligence. They are worth investigating.

Next…I put my face over a pan of steam and drape a towel over my head. The steam (usually with a few drops of White Flower Oil) opens up my sinuses and might even kill some germs on its way to my lungs. Steam can also relieve a sinus headache.
Last, but not least…Grapefruit Seed Extract (GSE), recommended by my D.O. (Dr. K) at least a decade ago. I use 20 drops in half a glass of orange juice {to mask its bitterness} a few times a day.

These remedies {found at natural foods stores and online} lessen my symptoms and shorten my healing time. Often they thwart the bug completely. Even if it’s a placebo effect, I’ll take it.

What are your favorite home remedies?

  GSE, Aconite, White Flower Oil


// December 15th, 2012 // No Comments » // Uncategorized

Today’s events in Connecticut are heartbreaking. To have the lives of at least twenty-six people—most of them young children—abruptly, violently, purposefully taken is incomprehensible. I can’t understand how someone, no matter how mentally ill, can see this as a solution. Through our human nature, we may want this person to suffer a slow and tortuous death, and then design a special place of torture for him to live. Forever.

But that won’t bring the babies back. It won’t mend our {global} grief, or the personal pain that we {even those of us who have lost a child to disease} can ever understand.

Even the satisfaction of the criminal’s slow and painful death couldn’t come close to mending the evil done.

Will gun control prevent this from happening again? Not as long as there is a black market for the black-hearted.

Will mandatory psychological evaluation prevent it? Not as long as much of the human mind remains a mystery.

Will outlawing violent video games, music, and movies save the future? Probably not. There will always be darkness in a few hearts who seek to inflict their pain on others.

Today, I pray for those shuddering under this heavy net of pain cast wide and far over families and communities. And I ask you to put a recurring note on your calendars to lift-up to God those left behind. In a few months, this event will be tucked into the back of our minds. I hadn’t thought of the Amish school attack, Columbine, or the 1979 shooting here in San Diego, in a long time. A reminder to pray for the continuing healing of these families {might} go a long way.

God bless you all…


Grandma and Papa Do Disneyland

// December 2nd, 2012 // No Comments » // Uncategorized

When our kids were small, Dave came home from the hardware store one day with a fat six-foot length of sprinkler pipe. Later that afternoon, he brought it to our room—a cap on each end and a slot near one of the caps. {Our change jug never seemed to get very full so Dave, suspecting foul play, switched tactics for saving his loose change every day.} Big treats were a rarity, but every two to three years, we cashed in our silver for a trip to Disneyland. (The pennies went to Papa Don -Dave’s dad- for the Shriner’s burn hospital.)

Even the kids put money into the tube. As the sprinkler pipe neared full, dinner conversation centered on the upcoming trip to Anaheim. These trips were in the autumn or the early spring, and always on a mid-weekday.

Two days before the excursion, Dave cut the bottom cap from the pipe and ceremoniously dumped the change onto the living room floor. And I DO mean ceremoniously. I can still see him dragging the heavy tube in from the garage. “Oh, no! Somebody better come help me! This thing is so heavy…there it goes…I…think I’m…going…to drop it!” By then he had all the help he could manage. Groaning, they helped Dad lift the tube upside down. “Look at that mountain of money!” Yep. He should have been in theater, not the geek Chess Club in high school. With the pile on the floor, we started guessing the total. The closest got bragging rights.

We had our jobs—Dad fished out the dollar bills (sometimes waving a twenty in their faces), Steve-quarters, Amy-dimes, Nick-nickels, and I watched over the flying arms. Dave and I helped the kids fill and secure their coin rolls.

The day before our trip, the kids and I went to the bank, exchanging our heavy load for paper money. Home again; I called Disneyland to find out tomorrow’s hours {sometimes they opened an hour earlier than scheduled} and which rides were closed. That night at dinner, we planned our attack—listing our favorite rides. When we got to Disneyland, we were pinballs shooting around the park until we completed our list.

Our Spring 1987 trip looked something like this…
Arrive forty-five minutes before the park opens
Wait with the crowd for Main Street’s velvet rope to drop
Speed walk to Space Mountain (less than a five-minute line)
Star Tours
Pirates of the Caribbean
Tea Cups
Haunted Mansion
Small World (for Baby-JaeJae *wink*)
Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride (for Dad)
…then we slowed down a little. We’d finished our list within an hour and a half. The next hour, we spent waiting in short lines for a few more rides (Pinocchio, People Movers, and the train around the park) before heading to Tomorrowland Terrace for lunch.

We stayed until they closed—after the parade (a great time to hop on the popular rides) and a little shopping. The drive home was quiet—the kids asleep and Mom halfway there. We have DONE Disneyland again.

Amy went with some friends once, expecting them to bounce enthusiastically around the park like we do. Not so. That night she told us, “When we got there, they bought some coffee and sat in the Plaza—sipping, looking at the map, and talking to each other about what they want to see today. By the time we got on our first ride, our family would have been getting off of our sixth!”

After looking forward to this trip for more than two years, our family didn’t want to waste a moment at the Happiest Place on Earth.

Today, things are different. This year, Dave’s company held their annual employee appreciation day at Disneyland. We were able to buy California Select passes at a deep discount by applying that day’s tickets {and two Disney gift cards from a few years ago} to new passes. Since last July, we’ve been six times.

Now we arrive a little after the park opens, hit a few rides and then amble through the different “Lands” searching for hidden Mickeys. We’ve learned to love California Adventure almost as much as Disneyland. And we love the slow pace we set for ourselves.

Although we still enjoy Disneyland, by going so often it’s lost some of its excitement….unless we bring a grandbaby with us. Then we get to see it through fresh eyes again.

              Even after they grew up…we still DO D’land! Nick and Steve in 1996