"Sit down and feed, and welcome to our table." -William Shakespeare

Friday, March 2, 2012

Natural 1st Aid Kit

With warm weather approaching... um, it is approaching isn't it???- my thoughts turn to my neglected daypack. (Not, at the moment doing double duty as a diaper bag.) In addition to the usual stuff a mom needs for a day away from home, I always carry a 1st Aid Kit. Always. You never know with a gaggle of kids in tow!

It's easy and inexpensive to put together your own kit full of all-natural remedies. The key is to use versatile remedies to avoid lugging the whole medicine cabinet with you.

Here is what I carry:

Tiny pair of sharp scissors
Tiny pair of tweezers
Needle (in case those tweezers don't cut it)
Safety pins, just 2 or 3
Lavender oil- the heart of any minimalist, all-natural 1st Aid Kit for on the go- see below
Arnica salve or pastilles- see below
Rescue Remedy- see below
Alcohol or iodine swabs (not strictly necessary if you carry lavender oil)
Anti-itch cream or spray for mosquito bites, etc.

Lavender oil: this little miracle replaces lots of other junk. Take several deep whiffs for headache relief. Drop one drop on any type of sting for immediate analgesic relief. Use instead of an anti-biotic cream or gel; it's a very powerful antiseptic. Dab on skin rashes, too. Lavender oil is one of the ONLY essential oils that can be used "neat," that is, straight, even on kids. Most every other eo needs to be diluted in a carrier oil or in water, making other oils rather cumbersome for on-the-go usage.

Arnica gel/ salve/ pastilles: water-based preparations of arnica are considered homeopathic; oil-based are considered herbal. If that's Greek to you, just know that strong herbs, such as lavender, can diminish the effectiveness of homeopathics if stored together. I like to use an oil-based salve of arnica to avoid this issue. Arnica is for bruises, sprains, bumps, etc, WHEN THERE IS NO BROKEN SKIN. Arnica should absolutely never be used on open wounds.

Rescue Remedy: technically a homeopathic remedy for stress, anxiety, and violent emotions in general (think temper tantrum from over-tiredness, hunger, etc). This is a ready-made remedy made by a company called Bach. You can buy this as an alcohol preparation, a spray, or in pill form. I like to keep this separate from my main kit in my bag, as the lavender can deactivate its awesome powers :). Pastilles (pills) are nice for kids, but so is the spray- spray in the mouth, on this skin and rub in, etc. I find the original alcohol tincture impractical for on-the-go. (Sometimes Amazon puts these remedies on sale: Rescue Remedy.)

Well, I hope that gets you dreaming about warm days in the woods.

"We seem to be going through a period of nostalgia, and everyone seems to think yesterday was better than today. I don't think it was, and I would advise you not to wait ten years before admitting today was great. If you're hung up on nostalgia, pretend today is yesterday and just go out and have one hell of a time."
-Art Buchwald

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