Home & Health Blogs

October 6, 2016

I have one word for your fall enjoyment: Roast! If you live frugally and aspire to a (so-called) simpler, healthier way of living that includes eating seasonally, roast vegetables! That’s right. When you have the oven on, turn it up a few notches, cut and lightly oil your best vegetables, and roast ‘em until they’re lightly browned. Why Roast? Price: The cheap, always-available vegetables that become even less expensive during fall and winter. Taste: Cabbage, onions, potatoes, and carrots ... more

September 29, 2016

What does it mean when a cat meows? Here is a look at what your cat is saying to you when it moves its ears, widens its eyes, rubs its nose on you, or uses any other body language! Have you ever wondered what it means when your cat purrs? We know you feel the love when they give you a head but or let you rub their belly, so find out what all these little gestures mean according to catspeak! Because most of an animal’s speech is body language, posture, and gesture, the key to understanding your... more

September 26, 2016

Is fidgeting your legs or body harmful or helpful to health?  We’ve all sat next to that guy whose constant knee-pumping rattles the floor and distracts everyone in the vicinity from their work. Or, there is the meeting participant who drums her fingers on the table, even when others attempt to speak. I myself have been guilty of neck-rolling during conversations, enjoying the pleasant sensations of relief that come from the creaking and crackling. Some of us fidget with gadgets, twirling... more

August 30, 2016

Try these preventive health measures for salt, a historically important food that can act as a great natural remedy. Salt is inexpensive, but it has many uses for your frugal household. Salt of the earth, not worth its salt, take it with a grain of salt, salted away, salty language. Salt’s frequent appearance in figures of speech only hints at the importance of salt in human history. The human requirement for dietary salt and the relative difficulty of producing it built and destroyed empires,... more

August 27, 2016

Interested in a simpler, more natural way of living?  Be forewarned: We are not talking those homesteads featured in gorgeous full-color magazine spreads promoting the virtues of a simple life in the country.  The aim is to live within your means as sustainably as possible, and in the process, stay as healthy as possible in body, mind, and spirit. It’s closer to mimicking the Depression-era philosophy: “Use it up, wear it out, make it do, or do without.” I’d also add, “Ad hoc, on the fly,... more

July 5, 2016

Apple cider vinegar might not sound appetizing on its own, but this super healthy food can be delicious in a switchel recipe. What Is Switchel? My mom grew up on a big Vermont dairy farm, and every summer, she’d tell us again about  how she and her sisters would haul endless gallons of something called switchel out to the men in the field during haying season. Mom’s recipe for the homemade beverage was simple: apple cider vinegar and maple syrup (both made on the farm), diluted with cold... more

June 27, 2016

After years of warning consumers not to eat eggs (or at least the yolks) because of their high cholesterol content, research has prompted the medical/nutrition establishment to bring the “incredible edible” back to the menu. One physician wrote, “Egg reduction or elimination [with a few possible exceptions, including allergies] must now join the list of urban myths from 20th-century medical care.” Yay! I’ve always eaten eggs liberally. Seems as if half the households in my town raise at least a... more

June 24, 2016

You’ll know if you accidentally run into a patch of stinging nettles. When you brush against them with bare skin, the delicate, needle-like hairs that cover their stems and leaves break off and inject you with irritating chemicals that feel like a host of wasp stings. But if you do suffer such encounter, count your lucky stars. Guard the spot carefully. Stinging nettle (Urtica dioica) is a plant of a thousand uses—nutritious food, medicine, tea herb, cheese-flavoring agent, beer, herbal fiber... more

June 23, 2016

Witch hazel (Hamamelis virginiana): A humble, but amazing native North American shrub. Consider: Its bark, twigs, leaves and roots have been used for hundreds of years by native Americans to treat a host of ills. It’s one of only a handful of botanicals approved by the FDA as a drug, and its distilled extracts can still be found on most pharmacy shelves. Its extracts are used in many cosmetics and skin-care products, including aftershaves. It is under active investigation for treating diabetes... more

June 23, 2016

If you have a garden, I hope you grow the beautiful annual flower calendula. Calendula officinalis produces beautiful orange or yellow flowers from seed in midsummer until frost, attracting honeybees, bumblebees, and other pollen and nectar-seeking insects, as well as hummingbirds. Calendula self-sows readily in the garden if you allow a few flower heads to fall to the ground (or you can harvest and dry the mature flowers, save the seeds, and plant them where you want them next spring). Its... more


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