DIY All Natural Sunscreen

I LOVE Wellnessmama.com!  Today, I made her Natural Homemade Sunscreen.  It was super easy and cost WAY less than the $11 I paid for 3oz of a high end all natural version.  I went basic and did an olive oil, coconut oil and beeswax base then added the powdered zinc.  Working with the zinc was a little scary but just be careful and it will be fine.  I also bought these adorable little cups to keep it in.  It smells wonderful, like the tropics, cant wait to try it out!

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[Disclosure: Salty Suburban Homestead is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com. We receive a small commission whenever a product is purchased through these links.  So if you decide to order anything that is recommended on the blog, we would LOVE it if you used the affiliated links. We thank you in advance for your support!]

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DIY Miracle Healing Salve

I happened to come across this DIY Miracle Healing Salve from Backdoor Survival.  Having dealt with Eczema and very very dry skin my entire life, I am willing to give any sort of cream or lotion a try.  Let me tell you, it actually WORKS!  3 weeks of apply this at night to my heals and they are softer and healing, no more dry, cracked and bleeding skin. It has so many uses and really is amazing stuff.  Give it a try and let me know how it comes out.

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DIY All Natural Homemade Bug Spray

I am a mosquito magnet!  There is just something about me I guess, maybe my blood, or skin, or smell. Whatever it is, they flock to me like crazy.  I also tend to get HUGE welts that itch and last for days.  Most bug sprays are nasty and contain very harmful chemicals.  The all natural versions are expensive and some don’t really even work that well.

So what is a mosquito buffet to do?  Make it myself.

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There are so many bug spray recipes all over the internet.  It was hard to narrow down what would work best, but I think I found a pretty good mixture.

DIY All Natural Homemade Bug Spray

Equal parts Castor Oil and Filtered Water
10-15 drops of each of  any combination of Essential Oil
Lemon Eucalyptus, Citronella, Rosemary, Peppermint, Lavender or Geranium

1. Fill spray bottle 3/4 of the way full with Oil and Water
2. Add Essential Oil
3. Shake VERY well before each application
4. Apply to exposed skin, be careful not to soak clothing, the oils may stain if used in excess

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How do you repel those little blood suckers?

[Disclosure: Salty Suburban Homestead is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com. We receive a small commission whenever a product is purchased through these links.  So if you decide to order anything that is recommended on the blog, we would LOVE it if you used the affiliated links. We thank you in advance for your support!]

DIY All Natural Homemade Eyeliner

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Continuing on my mission to rid our family from harmful chemicals, I had to evaluate my cosmetics.  I switched a few years ago to a mineral based powder makeup line that is very popular.  Although, I like the products and they are somewhat natural, they are very very expensive.  The most common product I use is eyeliner.  Seriously, if I have time to throw that on its a good day!  I save the whole face process for special occasions such as weddings and formal gatherings.

I had the small eyeliner brush already and had a hard time finding a pencil DYI version.  So, my eyeliner is in powder form and takes just a few tries to learn how to apply.  If I can do it sans eye glasses without making a mess, you can too!

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Really all you need are two ingredients: activated charcoal capsules and arrowroot starch (corn starch will work but not as well).  The charcoal is the base and gives you the deep black color, and the arrowroot is just an anti caking agent.  I used an equal amount of each, poured it into a small jar and gave it a good shake.  You will end up with a deep grey color.  For more of a midnight black, use less arrowroot.

Application is simple, dip the brush in water or run it under the tap to make it moist.  Then dip the wet brush into the powder.  Swirl the brush on the cap of the container to form a paste.  Smooth out the paste and apply.  It will take some practice, I use the side of my hand and it wipes off easily.

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This is NOT waterproof, it will run, but I feel thats the price you pay for going all natural and its easy to reapply.  Also, try not to get it in your eye, it will sting a little, trust me I know.  Best part? This container cost PENNIES to make, way better then the $19 I was paying before.

Has anyone used homemade eyeliner before? Or any other homemade beauty product?

[Disclosure: Salty Suburban Homestead is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com. We receive a small commission whenever a product is purchased through these links.  So if you decide to order anything that is recommended on the blog, we would LOVE it if you used the affiliated links. We thank you in advance for your support!]

Pa and MomMoms Vegetable Garden

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This weekend our family was outside planting this years vegetable garden at my parents house, who JW lovingly calls Pa and MomMom.  JW was ready to help in his farmer get-up!  So CUTE!

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We had 36 herb and vegetable seedlings that needed to be planted, 2 potato towers to build, sunflower seeds to sow, a fig tree to plant in a container, the ground to work and a fence to install.  It took almost the entire day, but the garden was ready just in time for an evening shower to water the very appreciative plants.

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What type are garden are you planting this year?  Trying any new types of vegetables or a new growing method?

DIY Potato Tower

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So, as we were cleaning out the panty to make room for the new groceries, we came across a bag of sprouted potatoes!  Jackpot!  Why is a bag of spoiled potatoes a good thing?  Because we were able to use them as seed potatoes for 2 new potato towers.

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Previously we posted about our potato barrel, and it really is growing quite well.  Now we were able to try a different technique called a tower.  It is basically the same as the barrel, except you use wire fencing to create a container and line it with newspaper or brown paper bags.  Then add some soil to the bottom, place your sprouted potato seed pieces and cover with more soil. Continue to water and add more dirt until you reach the top of the container.  Once the leaves turn yellow (about 90 days) check the potatoes for doneness (green potatoes will make you sick).

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We set up our towers in this years vegetable garden so when the potatoes are done we can just cut the wire and add the soil back into the ground to till into next years garden.  Also, we ran out of brown paper bags so one tower is lined on the bottom with an empty soil bag with holes in it. Hey it works for now, and it is an interesting experiment to compare with the other brown bag only tower.

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Have you ever had luck with potato towers?  Growing some spuds this year?

 

Food Preservation: Electric Dehydrator

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For Mothers Day this year I asked for an appliance.  No, not jewelry, not flowers, not clothing and not a spa day, but an appliance.  Let me tell you, it was the BEST Mothers Day gift EVER!  I did not ask for just any old appliance, I asked for an electric food dehydrator.  I figured that this was, first of all, a big investment that would take time to same for, so if I used my “gift” allotment I could purchase it sooner than later.  Also, dehydrators are up there with canners when it comes to homesteading food preservation gear and I have already found so many uses.

This is the Dehydrator we purchased.  It is an Excalibur 9 tray and its massive.

Excalibur Food Dehydrator

I can dry 2 bunches of bananas, a quart of strawberries and a few kiwi all at one time. Its great!  My boys love the fruit so much I have not been able to test out the storage ability of the product because it all is eaten in just a few days.  I am more of a salty snack kind of gal, so I am guilty of devouring 6 zucchini made into chips in just 48 hours, yes they are that good!

There are no real “recipes” for dehydrated foods.  Just follow the manual that comes with your unit (and you can do just as well with a $30 unit if you don’t want this giant in your home).  Different items have their own times and temps that should be listed in your manual.  I like to play around with the flavoring, such as; cinnamon, honey and maple for sweet and BBQ, Asian, curry and garlic for savory.

A dehydrator is also a multi-tool.  It can dry process fruits and vegetables, make jerky of all kinds, re-crisp crackers and cereals as well as proof dough.  Here are a few examples of items I have made so far:

Banana and Kiwi Chips

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Kale Chips; garlic, Asian, curry and taco

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Zucchini Chips; BBQ and salted Chia

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What have you made in your dehydrator?  Anyone looking into purchasing one soon?

[Disclosure: Salty Suburban Homestead is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com. We receive a small commission whenever a product is purchased through these links.  So if you decide to order anything that is recommended on the blog, we would LOVE it if you used the affiliated links. We thank you in advance for your support!]