We have bees, one more fly repellent idea, Dr Bronner's gets the big tick.
Here are our two new beehives which look like they've always been there, don't they? We are renting them from http://www.beezthingz.co.nz/
which means they maintain the hives and give us the honey! And hopefully some beeswax and pollen if I'm lucky. After a while we will learn how to do it from them and one day purchase a top bar hive and do it ourselves. It's so fascinating to watch them all going in and out of the hive and they make a pleasant low humming noise which I find very soothing. I've also been approached by Janet from Green Urban Livin, who is very active in the Save Our Bees charitable trust, which works hard to educate people about bees and why we need them in our gardens. You can read about it on her site here
She wants me to be an ambassador for the trust but I think I need to learn a bit more about them first. Only one person in the house has been stung so far, and of course it was me! I'm looking forward to a bumper crop of tomatoes this year and maybe next year my plum tree will give me some plums!
Mint's on toast
How are your mint plants doing? As you can see mine are a bit battered and torn after being placed throughout the house as fly repellents. I'm letting them recover outside and to be honest after the initial few weeks of fantastic fly repelling they lost their mojo. So I bought some more, thinking I would rotate them with one lot inside and the other out for a week then swapping them over. But still there are flies. So at the moment I am burning a combination of lavender and citronella essential oils (Lotus Oils have these at good prices this week) in this electric vaporiser
I bought. According to my favourite book The Fragrant Pharmacy by Valerie Ann Worwood flies hate the smell of them. You could also use an oil burner with a votive candle or put the oils on cotton wool in a saucer. I've just checked the kitchen and there are a few hardy souls but I think it is making a difference. I had lunch with the lovely Lorraine Downes the other day and she told me she hates flies and uses one of those fly spray dispensers which shoots stuff out every few minutes. I told her that it might be better if she just did a big spray in the morning and evening rather than having it automatically sprayed into the room all the time.
It's Safe to use Dr Bronners and Living Nature
makes interesting reading from Safe Cosmetics who decided to see after four years of their work trying to get chemical additives out of cosmetics if it had worked. They found that many mainstream cosmetics companies had made big efforts to change their ingredients and some such as Estee Lauder hadn't. I was so pleased to find that Dr Bronner's
soaps which we use in all the Wendyl's Green Goddess products and my favourite cosmetic company Living Nature
made it into their list of champion companies for complying with a list or requirements for safety set out by Safe Cosmetics. Remember you can buy Dr Bronner's on my website and I encourage you to make the shift to these soaps as they are not only delightful to use but also very safe.
Freight free frenzy
I know you are all madly getting your Christmas shopping done, so to encourage you to make a gift of my products or books I'm not going to add any freight ... for this week only. So make the most of it while you can.
Pearl popped a bottle of shampoo and conditioner in my shopping trolley a few weeks ago and I vaguely noticed the word "organic" and thought "oh here we go another multi-national trying to pass of chemical laden stuff as organic." I forgot about it and then used it one morning in the shower and loved it. So I spent some time at the weekend researching every ingredient on the Skin Deep website
and found that all the ingredients checked out except a couple of preservatives which scored a 6/10 which isn't too bad. So I am pleased to see a supermarket product at a decent price ($5.99) which is readily available for people trying to look after themselves.
Rash remedy for nappy days
I know I gave this out not so long ago but I made another batch for Gemma this week as our grand-daughter Emmie was having bad nappy rash and Gemma swears by it. So much so that she had given her lot to a friend whose baby had nappy rash too, so I made a big batch to share around her friends. I now use a product called vegetum instead of petroleum jelly as it is more natural and doesn't use valuable fossil fuels. You can get it at www.lotusoils.co.nz
. This ointment used to be made up at the chemist for mums and was always recommended by Karitane nurses in the old days. It would make a great homemade Christmas present for anyone with babies in nappies.
Mix together in a bowl
50g petroleum jelly or vegeum jelly
1tsp zinc oxide powder
3 mls almond oil
½ tsp lanoline ( you can get this at the chemist)
I nearly didn't put this link in because I knew some of you would have a good laugh, but something about it really appeals to me. Perhaps as a Christmas gift? Whatever you think it's a great way to recycle an old lotion bottle and make a nifty little holder for your cellphone while it is charging. Click here
to find out how. Okay, you can stop laughing now but if someone makes this could they send me a pic please so that I can prove that it was a good idea to put it in the newsletter.
Last week's winners of the Baby Banz sunglasses and Mosquito Bands are Margaret Hutson of Papakura and Suzanne McKenzie of Whangarei. Your prizes will be sent out today.