Tuesday, September 15, 2009

september 14: Make

Since there's all this Makin' goin' on, I felt compelled to start stuffing jars with herbs and liquids, too.
Maddie and I are on our way to stocking up our medicine drawer.
We started an infusion of yarrow in vodka for cuts and scrapes. (Yarrow is one of those especially fine plants -- it is used here for cleaning and relieving the pain of wounds and sores. It also contains silicin and silicylates so it eases feverish aches and pains.)

We also made a brandy cold medicine.
Brandy is great for a sore throat, so we stuffed bunches of herbs in a mason jar and filled it with a couple of cups of brandy (hollyhock: for colds and chest complaints, sage: sedative and helps remove toxins from the system, lemonbalm: sedative and induces sweating to reduce fevers, peppermint: removes harden mucus from the alimentary and bronchial systems and used for discomfort during colds , yarrow: eases feverish aches and pains).

Just in case you're interested, one more bit: soaking herbs in alcohol or glycerin extracts the medicinal alkaloids and the volatile oils (essential oils) from the herbs. After they sit for two weeks, we'll strain them and store them in a dark glass bottle.

We have a couple more to make today.

We read some good ones today-- Trevy and I both loved Is A Blue Whale The Biggest Thing There Is?. Which puts into perspective the size of things (kind of young for him, but still cool). We also read a pretty cool one called Math For All Seasons, which is about recognizing patterns and grouping numbers together quickly for easy counting, and counting by twos, threes, and fives. Maddie read with us Even Steven and Odd Todd... and of course we read the next Circus chapter of Pippi.

Then the rain came.
How lovely.
Breathe it in.

I showed Trevelyn Matching Fractions, which I got from Tara (at Periwinkles and Pine). So we played that for a minute or two.

We started water-color pictures for rainscapes.
And the rain stopped.
And it came again in a light sprinkle.
And it stopped again.

So we took took some water color paper, ran it under the tap to wet it, and took it outside to play.



And we meant to go outside and ride bikes in puddles and make splashes and get muddy...

but instead we stayed in and made sculptures.
Very fine sculptures.
From left to right: Mama's spider and tree, Trev's monster, Mama's pink monster, Maddie's witch.

(We'll show you all about that a bit later.)

Maddie has started designing invitations for Halloween.
They're planning a party, those two.

There has been lots of tellie watching today, and not much computer play.
Lots of noisy,
and lots of quiet.

There has also been a bit of a funk, as the Mama has quite forgotten herself, and has chosen to experience some moments in pressure or frustration (so much to do), instead of Joy.
Silly Mama.
That will be quite enough of that!

We'll see you tonight.


  1. The sculptures look wicked. When ever i make something like that it has to lay down a spell. The herbs are a great idea. I only get as far as using essential oils topically and inhaling.

  2. Your posts are always so full that by the time I get to the end I've forgotten half of what I wanted to comment on.

    Let me give it a go ...

    Awesome, awesome, how much fun!, awesome, and don't-I-know-it.

  3. We love our herbs, too! Thank you for the concoction ideas. It's great to have these already made up, ready to go, instead of frantically trying to make a balm or other product right when you need it! Wonderful post. :)

  4. We have a natural cold remedy here too. Herbs and boiling water to clear the head! I like the idea of making your own cold medicine. That is really interesting.

  5. You don't have a problem with the herbal infusions spoiling? Do you keep them in a cool place? How long do they last?

  6. Phyllis-
    after two weeks they'll be strained, and then kept in dark bottles.
    For the rub I used olive oil, which doesn't go rancid quickly (it will last for about a year) and the other tinctures are in alcohol (vodka and brandy) and that will preserve them- they'll last for six months.


Thanks so much for sharing your thoughts!