Blog Hop Party 7/25/14

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Homemade Herbal Drawing Salve

This drawing salve is great for splinters, and it is so easy to make! I love being able to pick fresh herbs and other items directly from my yard and be able to use them. This is can also be good for wounds your animals may get.


I have been taking a class from the Herbal Academy of New England for a couple months. It has been a really interesting experience learning about all the natural ingredients and their unique abilities to heal the body. Recently, they started an introductory class that is a lot of fun and very affordable.
Online Herbal Class for Beginners
Click here to explore the class!
In the latest section of my class, I made a drawing salve and the ingredients are an interesting mixture. A drawing salve is used to help treat minor skin irritations. This particular one is used for treating boils, insect bites, and splinters. Each ingredient has a special purpose and when combined, they are potent.
Plantain Infused Olive Oil
Plantain is a weed that grows wild and is probably in everybody’s yard. Plantain can be cut while in the yard, chewed and placed on insect bites immediately when they happen for relief. By itself, plantain is anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory.
Bentonite is known as a healing clay. It is made from volcanic ash, and it actually produces an electric charge. Because of this charge, when activated, using a liquid like water or vinegar, it has an ability to draw out toxins and chemicals, much like a sponge can absorb water. (Make sure the clay never touches metal such as spoons or bowls- it will neutralize the electric charge)
Activated charcoal is interesting. It has many uses both internally and externally. Highly porous, the charcoal pulls bacterial and toxins into the pores on its surface and traps them. (I actually grind it down a bit more than it comes to help it absorb into the salve better.)
Beeswax is obviously used to change the texture of this liquid and turn it into a salve. However, that is not its only purpose. Beeswax acts as a barrier, trapping the healing ingredients next to the skin.
Castor Oil is the notorious laxative. However, when applied topically, it is an anti-inflammatory, helps skin remain hydrated, fights infections, and is known to heal cuts and wounds.
Finally, our essential oils: Clove, Rosemary, Lemon, Lavender, and Eucalyptus
Lavender is credited, in this instance, with its amazing anti-bacterial qualities.
Clove is great as an antiseptic, and is often used to treat bug bites and cuts.
Lemon is a natural bacterial infection fighter.
Rosemary is credited with having the ability to kill bacteria and viruses on the surface of the skin. It is known to improve circulation, and will help with cell renewal at the site of injury.
Eucalyptus is added for the anti-inflammatory properties that is is known to have, and it has a unique ability to calm the skin. It is also a very popular treatment by itself for bites, burns, and blisters.
As you can see, each of these ingredients potentially have incredible healing abilities on their own, but when combined into this salve, you have created a anti-inflammatory and healing bomb!
Drawing Salve Ingredients

The Recipe

Homemade Drawing Salve

1 1/2 cups olive oil infused with plantain
1/2 cup Castor Oil
1 ounce beeswax
1/2 cup activated charcoal
1/2 cup Bentonite clay
1 teaspoon total of essential oils : clove, rosemary, lemon, lavender, and eucalyptus
To make the olive oil infused with plantain: I pulled fresh plantain from my yard and placed it in a small crock pot with the olive oil for about 4 hours on low. You can also infuse it by placing the ingredients in a jar and allowing it to sit for about ten days. Then, strain the oil and press the leaves out to get as much as possible. (or, I put the leaves and the oil in the food processor and liquified them. This way the salve gets as much benefit from the plantain as possible.
Then, I placed it in a small glass pan and slowly warmed it up enough to melt the beeswax. Slowly stir in the remaining ingredients, I used a wooden spoon to keep the bentonite clay active. Pour into small glass jars and allow mixture to cool. It will slowly start solidifying, so don’t add more beeswax than it calls for, or it will be a solid, not a salve!
plantain 2

Fresh Bruschetta- Farm to Table

This is perhaps the easiest Bruschetta ever.
All you need is:
Cherry Tomatoes: I purchased yellow and red from a farmer to add color
Fresh Basil- Pulled from my garden
Balsamic Vinegar
Olive Oil
A French Baguette- sliced at an angle


No measurements here:
I quartered the cherry tomatoes
Grabbed a bunch of basil from the garden and chopped it and threw it in!
Then I sprinkled it with a generous amount of salt and some pepper.
Then I tossed in a couple tablespoons of Balsamic vinegar.
I mixed it up and let this rest while I seared the baguette.

I sliced the baguette on an angle so the individual pieces would be larger.
I put some Olive Oil in my fry pan and coated top and bottom of the bread.
I turned on the heat and turned them when they got golden brown.

Finally, I spooned the tomato mixture over top of the hot bread, 
and I spooned the vinegar mixture from the bottom of the bowl over top of the tomatoes.

If you happen to have some cheese, you can sprinkle it on the top, and then broil them
to melt the cheese.

Either way, with or without cheese, this is a wonderful summertime treat!

P.F. Chang's Style Bunny Lettuce Wraps

When you want to spoil your bunny babies!

~Fresh Bunny Lettuce Wraps~
1 Organic Romaine Lettuce Leaf
1 Organic Small Carrot
1 Small Raspberry
1 Small Piece of Fresh Pineapple
~I use a handful of an organic spring lettuce mix~ 

I use one large lettuce leaf.
Place everything else on this lettuce leaf.
Tie together with either a long piece of timothy hay, 
or slice another long piece of Romaine for it.

My Name is Chachi, the Rooster.

My name is Chachi. I am a Barred Rock Cochin rooster. I am not sure where I was born maybe in a hatchery or on a farm, but I was just one of many when my mom adopted me at a farm store when I was just 8 weeks old. I now live at Happy Days Farm. My job is to take care of my 11 hens. I spend my days watching over them, looking for hawks. I help them find tasty bugs, and  protect my little kingdom.

Anyway, when I first came home, everything was great! I played during the day, and I loved being held and eating special treats from mom. It all changed one day, and I am not sure why. Mom came out with our breakfast, and I wanted to give it to the girls! I want to be the one providing for my ladies, not her. They love her, and I want to be the only one they love and depend on. She protects them, but I do too! It just made me so mad! I am not sure why, but that morning I attacked mom, and do you know what she did? She kicked me! I am Chachi, ruler of this coop, and she dared to kick me! It just made me so mad!

 Ever since that day, things have been different. I watch her, and she watches me. Now, she wears these really tall boots, and that irritates me too! Why does she do all these things to aggravate me! Once in a while, she will still pick me up, like when I was a baby roo. She still makes sure I get special treats. Yes, it is different now, and it is my fault. If I am having a really bad day, she puts me in this little cage where I can't mess with her while she cleans, but I also can't get to my girls. Even though I am only in here for a few minutes, this makes me even madder!

However, if she can put up with me, I will put up with her. I will protect my ladies; I will guard my coop.

I will occasionally forget that I don't need to protect them from her though. Please keep me, Mom. I don't understand why you are upset with me, I think I am doing my job. As long as I am not mean to the hens, and I promise to be sweet to you sometimes, can I stay, please?

The Guineas are Growing Up!

The guineas are going to be moving from their 'condo' to a 'townhouse.' Security has been reinforced, I LOVE using zip ties. Extra 1/2 inch wire added all around with dirt and mulch on top, nothing is going to get to them if I can help it!