Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Merry Christmas

Mad King Ludwig -purchased at Kathe Wohlfart

My absolute favorite acquisition from my travels this past fall was a hand carved nutcracker I purchased in Rothenburg, Germany. Rothenburg is an ancient walled city like no other I have ever been in. I mean really, where's Cinderella?
Rothenburg, Germany

I love the nutcracker so much I think I'm going to get a second one exactly like it to have the pair.  It looks so perfect on my console. 
Funny how certain things and smells  can trigger emotions, memories and warm fuzzies.  The nutcracker in and of itself really isn't anything most people would fawn over, but for me it just makes me think of everything cozy about this very special holiday.  I love the crackling fire in the fireplace, the busyness in the kitchen, decorating and above all the time spent with friends and family.  My hope and prayer is that you will also have a wonderful Christmas.  May you enjoy everything that makes this holiday so special!

Have a wonderful Holiday!

Sunday, December 22, 2013

The Healing Benefits of Clay

There's nothing like the holiday season to make my head spin with a thousand things to get done.  Today is another full day and I can't just wait for a lull in the schedule. I have to carve out the time or else I'll never get to another post.  So today I want to discuss the medicinal properties of clay, yet another fantastic product of nature that needs to be showcased.  I choose to keep some on hand and have it stored right next to my container of charcoal.  My clay is European Green Clay I purchased from Hope for Health.   If there is one word I would choose to describe clay, it would be detoxification.  Clay is actually aged volcanic ash.  An area that has high concentration of this substance is located in Benton, Wyoming- hence the name, Bentonite Clay.  Never heard of it?  I'm sure you've seen it.  Many facial masks are made with clay.  Clay is by no means limited to facials and is very beneficial in drawing out toxins from the body.  You may be familar with some of the behavioral practices of parrots of Central and South America.  They eat berries and foods that contain toxicity.  In an effort to protect themselves from sickness, they congregate at clay licks.  These birds have an innate knowledge that clay will neutralize the toxicity they ingest from the foods they eat.

The Many Uses Of Clay

Aside from facials and bird clay licks, clay has many uses and can help in several situations.  Clay can help to absorb toxins, heavy metals, impurities and chemicals.  If you have followed this blog for a while, you may remember me stating that maintaining alkilinity in the body is very important.  The way to do this is to eat at least 75% raw.  An alkaline body is one that successfully fights disease and is on the offense when it comes to airborne pathogens, bacteria and invading "bugs".  (Not to mention that this practice would help to reverse a myriad of medical conditions!)  Wouldn't you know, clay actually helps to alkalize the body, just what you need if you are ever sick.  Clay aids in nutrient absorption, helps to neutralize the body from radiation exposure and is rich in minerals.  As a side note, one of the things that was done to help those exposed from the nuclear fallout at Chernobyl in the Soviet Union,  was to mix clay into chocolate bars for the people to eat.  If that wasn't enough, clay has also been shown to fight MRSA and flesh eating bacteria according to this article.  Talk about packing a serious punch!  So often I find that the the overlooked and in this case a substance that is actually tread underfoot contains powerful healing abilities. Yet again, it is a solution that is ignored because of it's lack in profitability. 

Here is more information about clay that might interest you.  Clay helps to cleanse the skin even helping to remove spots left from acne.  It helps the liver in the the process of cleansing the body. It helps to strengthen the immune system and can help in the removal of parasites.  It also has been seen to help with allergies, colitis, viral infections, diabetic neuropathy, diarrhea, stomach ulcers and anemia.  Although clay is seemingly inert, it actually carries a negative electrical charge.  A negative charge coming in contact with the body behaves like an antioxidant help the body to neutralize free radicals and aids in healing the body.

How To Use Clay

When mixing powdered clay with water it is beneficial to not actually mix it.  Because of it's charge, it should be scooped out with a non-metal spoon.  A plastic or wooden spoon should be fine.  I also just pour water onto it slowly until it is aborbed.  I don't even mix it.  Use just enough water to make a paste or poultice to use externally or a few tablespoons of it in a full glass of water to drink as a slurry.  This past summer I used clay on my son's face when he got poison ivy.  Clay will not stain the skin like charcoal can.  (I also use clay for bee stings.)  Another tip to remember is to try not to use natural remedies on a day to day, regular basis. You do not want your body to become accustomed to an herb or treatment rendering it ineffective when you really need it.

Happy Holidays

Okay, I think this time sitting down at the computer has helped me catch my breath from my pre-Christmas whirlwind of activity.  I love this time of year and enjoy getting together with family, baking cookies and making the house sparkle with holiday decor.  Obviously we do not have crown roast for our christmas meal but do it  veggie-Guatemalan style.  My mom takes the lead with our help and makes vegetarian tamales which is an all day group effort.  My husband and kids absolutely love it!  Once a year do we enjoy this very fun, festive activity.  My kids count the days and we all revel in every aspect of this time of year.  Hope you are enjoying this season as well!

Have a great day!