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Friday, October 24 , 2014


It has been said that a lot of physical pain starts in the mind. "Positive thinking" seems like a pat solution to pain and illness, but we believe good thoughts really do help the body heal. We love affirmations! Here's what to do...

Start by assigning an appropriate affirmation to yourself. Write it down on an index card (or type it into your smartphone), and read it over and over—at least seven times in a row, out loud if possible—time and time again throughout the day. Think about the meaning of it, and when you say it, mean it. But even if you memorize it and then just say it by rote, it will make a proper impression on your subconscious.

Here's an example: I walk through life with joy and ease.

Once you have a better understanding of how deeply affected you are by your words and thoughts, you can create your own affirmations by pinpointing your physical problem and the underlying cause of it.


For back pain: I let go of the fear that is causing my back to tense up and replace it with a relaxed, secure feeling.

For headaches: I am wonderful! I love and appreciate myself. There is no reason for my head to ache.

For a cough or cold: I am relaxed and surrounded by positive energy as my body heals itself.

It's free, it's safe...and it works!

For more healing affirmations, visit FreeAffirmations.org/affirmations-for-health

More ways to retrain your brain...


Thursday, October 23 , 2014

Homemade Mouthwash

Don't you love the smell of cinnamon? Cinnamic aldehyde—the naturally occurring compound that's responsible for its wonderful smell—can also help eliminate odor-causing bacteria in the mouth. Here's what to do...

Boil two cups of water, then add five or six pieces of cinnamon stick (available at supermarkets) and let it simmer for five minutes.

Once it's cool, strain out the sticks and pour the liquid into a sealable bottle. Use it as you would use any commercial mouthwash. Unlike some store-bought brands, it's alcohol-free!

More natural cures...

Wednesday, October 22 , 2014

New Way to Get ALL the Toothpaste Out

So you think you got all the toothpaste out of that tube? Think again! First, put the sealed tube in a tall glass of hot water (from the tap) so that the water completely covers the tube. Leave it there for one or two minutes. As the heat makes the tube expand, it will release any paste stuck on the sides. Carefully snip the bottom of the tube and you’re sure to get another good squirt from that wider end.

If you think you have enough paste for more than one application, roll up the snipped bottom and seal with a binder clip.

Thanks to Julie Edelman, "The Accidental Housewife" (JuliesTips.com), for help with this tip.

More household tricks...


Tuesday, October 21 , 2014

Unshrink Your Wool Sweater

If you have a wool sweater that has become too snug, we've got a tip that'll bring it back to its original size. Here's what to do...

Hair conditioner can soften and loosen knit fibers, which allows them to return to their original size. Mix one-third cup of hair conditioner in a sinkful of warm water. Submerge your tight sweater into the conditioned water, and let it soak for about 10 minutes. Shake off as much water as possible (don't wring!), then lay the sweater flat on a towel.

While it's still wet, reshape it as close as possible to its original size by holding each side and gently pulling the sweater to make it larger. Pull it evenly—both sides at the same time—all around the sweater. Let the sweater dry flat. It should return back to normal (or very close to it).

More help with your wardrobe...


Monday, October 20 , 2014

Tea for Your Face

A yoga instructor once said to us, "Relax your face," which is a strange phrase and something that's easier said than done. The face harbors a lot of anxiety! Here's a steamy facial relaxant that also helps to unclog pores.

Boil two cups of water in a pot, then add two chamomile tea bags. Cover the pot, and let the tea bags steep for seven to 10 minutes. Put a towel over your head, and hold your face about 12 inches above the uncovered, steaming tea. Stay that way for about seven minutes. Then rinse your face with cool water and pat dry.

Bonus:  Chamomile has properties that help unclog pores, making them look smaller and your complexion look better.

More help for your complexion...


Friday, October 17 , 2014

Better Than Brillo

Broiling provides great flavor, but the high heat does a great job of searing food onto your pan! You could soak and scrub your fingers raw, or try this easy fix...

While the broiler pan is still hot (or reheat it slightly if it has cooled), carefully sprinkle on some powdered laundry detergent—enough to cover the burned-on food. On top of that, place wet paper towels (whatever you need to cover all the detergent). Leave everything for about 15 minutes, then remove the towels. The burned-on stuff should easily come off with a gentle scrape.

More easy ways to clean...


Thursday, October 16 , 2014

Sore Throat Gargle...It's Not Salt

Do you feel the scratchiness of a sore throat coming on? Here's a highly favored pantry item that usually fixes our sore throats.

Mix two teaspoons of apple cider vinegar in an eight-ounce glass of warm water. Take a mouthful, gargle with it, and spit it out, then swallow a mouthful. Again, gargle a mouthful, spit it out and swallow a mouthful. Notice a pattern? Do this until there's no liquid left in the glass.

Dose: Repeat the process once an hour. By the third or fourth hour, the sore throat is usually gone. (This remedy works for us every time.)

Oh, and get plenty of rest, watch what you eat, and stay away from coffee, cigarettes and alcohol...but you knew that!

More natural help for colds and flu...

Wednesday, October 15 , 2014

Taming Plastic Wrap

It's a common kitchen hassle—wrestling with your plastic wrap as it tries to tangle and cling to everything in sight. If plastic wrap gets unmanageable, chuck the box in the freezer. Cold plastic wrap will behave the way you want it to. And what if you can't find the edge of the sticky roll to pull out? Here's what to do...

Take a piece of tape (any kind), and dab at the roll until it picks up the loose edge.

If plastic wrap won't stick to the bowl or dish you're wrapping, dampen the outer edge of the bowl or dish, and then put the plastic wrap on. It will seal with a kiss!

More help in the kitchen...


Tuesday, October 14 , 2014

This Weird Juice Relieves Constipation

Raw sauerkraut and its juice have friendly bacteria that can aid digestion. In a related story, sauerkraut can also help your system as an excellent laxative! Eat one-half to one cup a day to relieve symptoms of constipation. Heat destroys the important enzymes in sauerkraut, so make sure you eat it raw. Raw sauerkraut is available at health-food stores, or here's a recipe to make your own:

Homemade Sauerkraut

More help with digestive disorders...


Monday, October 13 , 2014

6 Fixes for Scratched Furniture

Thrift shops and Craigslist can be frugal outlets for furniture...but sometimes the wood looks a bit beat up. If it's just a few scratches that are holding you back from a great piece of used furniture, here's what to do...

You don't have to be a woodworking expert to fix up old furniture.

On dark wood, fill in a scratch or nick with a paste of instant coffee grounds (two to three tablespoons mixed with one or two drops of water). Use a cotton swab to apply.

Cover up a scratch on varnished wood by using an appropriately colored eyebrow pencil, shoe polish or crayon. You can also try rubbing a pecan, walnut, Brazil nut or peanut into the scratch.

On mahogany, a little iodine will hide most minor scratches. Apply with a clean cloth or a cotton swab.

More help for your furniture...