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Get rid of Lice Naturally

Our family has been afflicted by very unpleasant companions last month. Well, those with long hair did, and the boys remainded lice-less except for one little guy on Papa’s head. We got rid of it naturally, whitout any chemicals. If you don’t want to use the shampoo from the drugstore (which is not that effective anyway) There’s pretty much 2 ways. A friend of mine and all her kids got them in the same time as us, and she decided to shave everyone’s head. But my hair doesn’t grow 2 inches a month like her, so I decided to take the somewhat less effective way. Here’s the methods I’ve tried and their results for me and my daughter:

1. Covering your head with oil (I used almond oil) and letting it sit overnight.

I don’t know how many I had on my head, but after that precedure I still had about 15 lices when we passed the metal comb. The eggs were falling off easily, thought – and there was so many of them!

2. Shampoo with vinegar +added EO (I used Tea tree, minth, lavender and Geranium)

The point of using vinegar or oil is to drown the lice, because they have a special dispositive not to drown in water and oil or vinegar makes it shot down for good. My hairs were really, really clean after that! But we still found a lot of eggs and 2-3 living lice.

3. Pass the metal comb, twice or thrice a day.

I beleive this is what was the most effective, more then shampooing our hairs with anything. It’s important to use a metal one since they are the ones that will unlodge the eggs.

 

We’ve been lice-free for more then a week now. Hope this helps!

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Going Apple Picking

Apple time as come here in the Province of Québec! Labor day today found lots of families wanting to bring home a bag  or two of freshly picking apples to be turned into delicious marvels, like a german style applecake, apple pockets or applesauce. A lot chose to eat it just as it, after picking it from the tree.

It was the first time for me and my children. We just moved from a region that didn’t have an appropriate climat for apples, and here in the centre-of-québec there are tons of apple producers!

My daughter was quite impressed by the amount of apples in each tree and a little sad for all those sitting on the “floor”.

And I couldn’t help myself but splurge into decorative squashes. 5 for 2$. I’m sure you understand.

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Tutorial: Bubble Wands

One of summer’s biggest outdoor fun is to blow bubbles. But when you have little ones around, loosing the tiny plastic bubble wands is a very easy thing to do! Plus, they only make tiny bubbles. I decided I would try my hand at making wire ones like I saw around on the internet and I was pleased at how easy they are to make! Let me show you how we (me and my 4 year old) did!

 

You will need:

  • Cooper wire, like the one we use in jewelry
  • Wood dowel, or found sticks. We used drift wood like in the Solstice wand tutorial
  • Cookie cutters of various shapes
  • Cutting tools (jewelry ones works great)

Wrap wire around chosen cookie cutter. Take care to leave some loose so the wire overlaps itself.

This the excess around itself, and leave a good length of the other end before cutting. Wrap your shape around your stick.

That quick, that simple! and you have an awesome magical bubble wand! Now you only need to mix one part dish soap with one part water and pour the mix in a plate. Dip your wand in it and blow, or wave you hand!

You can let your creativity go from the basic shape, and even choose not to use cookie cutter as a guide. Kids like them so much better then the little plastic ones. Go try to make one, but I warn you, it’s addictive and soon you’ll have tons in stock- perfect for summer birthdays!

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Tutorial: Felt Lettuce Tutorial

When my daughter got in age of playing with playfood, I became obsessed at making them. She now has a bin filled with various food I made her from vedgies to dessert to sushies. Today I want to show you how I made a lettuce!

Cut 3 vague peanut form. Run stitch an inch at the bottom. Gather.

See how they look together, edit the cut if needed.

Cut 3 smaller pieces, pin together. Sew following the piece on top untill 3/4 up.

Cut a rectangle, square or circle (I used a leftover) And push it inside.


Sew at some corners, so that you don’t see any edges from the top.

Should look like this. Stuff with wool.

Attach the biggest leaves to see where you place them.

Sew them on with an overcast stitch.

Cut a circle, Blanket stitch it to the bottom so we don’t see any stuffing.

 

Voilà!

 

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Celebrating St-Jean-Baptiste

In the huge country that is Canada, there’s a province in which its people speaks proudly French ever since we arrived. There you will find a land of many rivers and luscious forests, and on June 24th, every city from the biggest to the smalls will lit a bonfire for its resident.

Weather on the shore of the Saint-Laurent or in the middle of a parking lot, people will assemble to celebrate what we truly feel is a nation apart from others. People sign and dance.

What our ancestors brought us was a pagan celebration of the Sun in this longest day, christianized to please the Church. St-Jean-Baptiste is still celebrated around the world, much in France, Belgium, Spain. There’s always a purifying fire. But here, it involved into a urge to celebrate our identity. Our uniqueness.

June 24th is our own July 1st, 4th or 14th. We celebrate our chore values like love, friendship, sharing,  justice, equity, loyalty, humour, charity, truth.

I like to believe we are a nation built from the best of every nations that stepped in to conquer the native’s land.  Our blood is full of French, English, Scottish, German, Irish, Italian and Native, and more recently African, Asian and Middle orient origins and we speak the most beautiful language in the world (well, to me!). Our faces shows so many different features, our skin goes from porcelain pink or red to the deepest brown. Our hair can be almost white (like my son!) to the darkest black (like my mom!).  The eyes of a baby will always be a surprise. Our French language borrows English and Dutch words for a wide range of expressions, and expressive we are!

So on the eve of June 23rd, have a bonfire and know for certain that 8 millions people celebrates with you. Sign and dance and have your favortie food and tell your family you love them!

And when midnight pass soon after the darkness arrives, tell everyone Bonne Saint-Jean!

 

 

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Photo Tutorial: Summer Solstice Sun Wand

The Summer Solstice might be my favorite holiday.  The earth is at last warm again and the lilac trees are full of flowers. School is over and pools are opening!

To celebrate the longest day, I made this very simple wand that takes no time to assemble.

You need

  • A twig of any sort. I used driftwood from our beach.
  • Yellow, red and orange felt
  • Lace, strand of yarn, ribbons….

What to do:

  • Cut a sun shape in your yellow felt, double it. I went really pointy with this one, but you can make a rounder one.
  • Embellish it to your imagination
  • Blanket stitch all around, but leave one point open

  • Cut your stands of lace and ribbons the length of the twig

  • Attach it to one end of the twig.

  • Place inside the Sun.
  • Here I blanket stitched over the lace to firmly attach the Sun to the stick

And you’re done!

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Make it yourself: Toothpaste

One of the reason I hated to brush my teeth as a kid was the taste. Synthetic mint that leaves your mouth almost burned and aseptic never felt good to me, and the huge toothbrush made me gag (I’m still using kid sized one, I have a little mouth!). I stumbled upon a recipe for homemade toothpaste on pinterest once and tried it that very night after. After making it several times and adjusting it to my taste, I have for you my somewhat “final” recipe. It’s VERY easy to make, you’ll see!

You need:

  • A tea spoon of baking soda
  • 2 tea spoon of coconut oil
  • 2-3 tea spoon of cinnamon, or cinnamon essential oil (add drops to your taste), or mint oil, whatever fits your taste.

You mix with a fork and it’s really do use!

It seems a little but for my 4 person family it last a week. You don’t need lot on your brush. You get used really fast to the texture and salty taste.

And your teeth feel clean afterwards, without the aggressive aftertaste of commercial products. You can add stevia powder for remineralization of the teeth.

Of course there are some people who don’t agree with making your own toothpaste, so please inform yourself to make an informed choice if you want to use it.

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Photo Tutorial: How to make a mei tai doll carrier

Children love to pretend, and do just like their parents. Seeing mommy and daddy with a baby on the back is something usual for my children, and soon enough my daughter requested for a ring sling so she can carry around Victoria, her waldorf companion doll. This spring, I’ve checked on my longtime to-do list one item I really wanted, a mei tai. Both children wanted one, their size. I made two of those while they were naping at the same time…It doesn’t happen often, but today they did so I’ve jumped on the occasion and thought you might like to see how I did them.

First find 2, 3, 4 fabric you like, your child like and that goes well together.

Cut two rectangle that would be around the size of your child’s front. The bigger the easier to carry a big 18″ doll, the smaller the easier to wear for a child. This one is smaller 9×12″, I suggest to go bigger. I have an easy trick for the top strap angles later.

Cut the straps. The longer the better. I first went with 20″. This is okay for the bottom ones, but I’ve added 16″ after trying it on my boy. They are about 4″ large, so I cut them 8″ and folded them. Right side facing, sew/serge on top and the side, and flip them right side up.

Take your rectangle and place one strap in a corner. Cut. Fold vertically (on the longer) and cut the excess corner.

Take one rectangle, facing right side up. Roll your straps, it’s so much easier. Pin your longer ones at the angles.

And pin the short ones at the bottom. Leave an inch or so at the bottom.

Place the other rectangle (right side must face!) and pin around. Sew/serge the sides and top, but leave the bottom open.

Flip everything right and unpin straps. Enter the excess fabric at the bottom in and over stitch it.

If you realize, like me, that the top straps are too short, here’s how I manage to add on without unsewing anything; make straps like you first did, and tuck in a half inch inside the strap.

Inside end of strap in and overstich.

There you go! A beautiful, playful doll carrier for your little person to take his/her doll everywhere!

My son’s been carrying Albus ever since I tried it on him. He only took it out to get in the car twice and promptly asked it back both times. He also took it out to sleep, but I’m pretty sure he’ll ask for it tomorrow.

Hoping I made some of you try to make some! It’s very easy and takes no time. It’s a really good way for your child to carry around his/her doll everywhere while optimizing the chance for it to stay clean!

Please come back and share if you make one, we’d love to see it!

 

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Living on a land (Toys on a Walk series)

Please let Albus and Victoria, our resident dolls, give you a tour of our little part of earth.

For this year we decided to rent the grand-parents house of Papa, which is located on the family land on the shore of the magnificent Saint-Laurent river, in the Province of Québec, Canada. There, my in-laws cultivate potatoes and all sorts of vegetables.

Here the land takes longer to wake up. When we took our walk, only green moss and some dandelions were at sight.

But there are lots of winged friends around!

Of course, the kings of nature here are the evergreens. Cedars, Pines, Firs are what’s green all year long.

Buds are just appearing. Roses, Maples, Birch are cautious here. They don’t want to get caught with frost!

We will plant potatoes soon, as now’s the time. But the lettuce, carrots, beans, squashes and broccoli will have to wait until the end of the month; they are much more fragile.

On the land, there are ponds to sit by and watch trouts. Sometimes a heron great us there too.

Fields waiting. Oh, the possibilities!

Back to the house is one of my favorite view. A swirly earth road borded with trees, looking at summer cottage transformed into all-year home, to the river so huge we people here call the sea.

In the sand we can find many treasures; seashells, urchins, crabs shells, special rocks and tons of drift wood.

Underwater lies more treasures, and all the activity of tiny things living in it!

With the sea and the forest so near, we feel very fortunate. It is a perfect setting for a slow-paced life and a wonderful theatre for us to witness the cycle of the seasons.

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Make it Yourself: Homemade Organic Nutella

My mom seldom bought Nutella; it was (and still is) quite expensive and not very healthy (beside what they claim in their ads). We only had it when in was on sale and it was a real treat! When I started living by myself and buying what I wanted I often bought a jar; I loved it on my bagels…But soon I found that eating that often made me grumpy and weird…Too much sugar and fat intake, so I stopped buying it and said goodbye to chocolate spread, until I was at my mom and stumble upon a TV show about dessert. Here’s the recipe the guy proposed:

What you need:

  • 2 cups of Hazelnuts*
  • ½ cup of icing sugar
  • ½ cup of cocoa
  • 2 table spoon of hazelnut oil (sunflower, canola, even olive oil could work)
  • 1 table spoon of vanilla extract

What you do:

  1. On a cookie sheet, evenly spread hazelnuts and put them in the oven to roast at 400F for about 8 min. Check them often it roast fast!
  2. Let them cool and take out the shells by scrubbing them together.
  3. Place them in a robot and crush them for 5 min, until it start to look like butter.
  4. Add the rest of the ingredient and mix them for as long as it takes for you to like the texture. Some like it more crunchy, some like it more smooth.
  5. Slice a piece of bread and spread your newly made butter on it.
  6. Enjoy!

There are variation of this recipe that contains milk or dried powder milk products to make it more like the store-bought thing but I tend to make the recipe more simple. We tend to use organic ingredients.

* I had a friend make it by replacing the hazelnut by almond for her allergic daughter and they found it very good as well.  I guess any kind of nuts would work.

I suggest keeping it in your fridge since they’re no preservative. I usually double the recipe and it last us about a week.

It is SO good on toast, untoasted bread, fruits. It relatively takes no time to make and is so easy to offer in a pretty jar. The kids can help measuring and dumping the ingredients in the robot and will lick the spoon afterwards.