The Beautiful Outdoors

Being able to spend time outside in the middle of November is wonderful. Having a sunny day in the low 60º range makes it even better. And spending it with family is the cherry on top. Sweet Girl and I got to spend the afternoon with my dad and stepmom at their house in the country. They don’t have a lot of land but they have a large yard, lots of leaves on the ground, chickens, and dogs, so lots of fun was had.

For me, though, it was so relaxing to spend time outside without having to be on constant guard with Sweet Girl. I love to be outside with her, and she loves exploring, but sometimes it is exhausting to keep a constant eye on a runaway toddler. Today was all about watching my little girl explore with grandpa. She spent the afternoon playing with the dogs and riding in her little red wagon. It was so wonderful to see her enjoying the outdoors as much as I do.

While I was relaxing and watching my little girl have fun with grandpa I was thinking about some of the weeds I could be digging up and using in home remedies. Because they live in the country, and use no pesticides, I was able to dig up quite a few great plants without worry about contaminants. I’m making a slow change to our medicine cabinet to get out all of the chemicals out.

For me, it’s important to work with and study only one herb/plant at a time so I don’t get too overwhelmed. While I was at dad’s house he had a yard full of dandelion and plantain. I wish I had thought to take pictures because one of the plantain plants had leaves that were at least 16 inches long. I have been doing a lot of research into the properties and applications of both dandelion and plantain and am excited to make some salves for future use.

Plantain is wonderful. Particularly for helping to with various skin ailments. I plan on making a plantain infused oil and creating a healing salve that we can use for cuts, scrapes, burns, boils and acne. The leaves and roots can also be used internally to improve kidney and liver function, relieve gastrointestinal inflammation, and respiratory infections. I’ll make sure to put up a post about my plantain salve once it’s ready to be put together.

Dandelion is also a great plant that’s usually considered a pesky weed. But it can be very beneficial when used as a natural medicine. I was telling my dad that I think it’s funny how many people pay buckets of cash on pesticides while others will pay those same buckets to eat dandelion salads in a fancy restaurant. Dandelion is full of vitamins A, B, C, and D, and minerals like iron, potassium, and zinc. Typically it is used to aid the digestive system, helping to stimulate appetite and and aid digestion. I haven’t decided for sure what I’m going to do with the dandelion roots and leaves I gathered but I will definitely make a post with more information about the plants uses and properties as well as how I end up utilizing it in my medicine cabinet.

Nature can surprise you. The changes in the weather, the beauty of plant and trees, and the amazing medicinal benefits of seemingly innocent weeds. I’m so glad that the weather has been so beautiful because it means I’m able to get out every day with Sweet Girl and enjoy everything Mother Nature has to offer.

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