Our home remedies – Part 2

This is part of my Home Remedies series blog posts. Part 1 of this series can be found HERE.

DISCLAIMER: The home remedies I would enumerate below are the remedies I use for MY family. I am, in no way, a medical practitioner. Use the following home remedies with caution and at your own risk. This is not meant to be a substitute for medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. My home remedies do not apply to infants. Please also always remember that natural/whole food does not mean no overdosage or no side effects. Practice prudence when employing natural home remedies. Garlic, for instance, seems to act as a blood thinner which prevents heart attacks but this also means that it should not be given up to a week before a surgery. Consult your doctor or medical practitioner.

Aloe vera

Aloe vera is love! I have never realized how great aloe vera is until recently. The gel can be used for so many things – from minor wounds to burns to all sorts of beautifying stuff.

I use fresh gel as I have aloe vera plants at home. It is so easy to grow and I suggest you grow your own, too.  I just peel the aloe vera and apply directly. Because I usually am in a hurry, I peel it with my hands (yeah, hindi ganito kaganda!). I just make sure to wash my hands thoroughly. I apply this directly to burns and minor wounds. I also used this as a poultice for Jia’s stye.
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Our home remedies

This is Part 1 of my series on Home Remedies. Part 2 can be found HERE.

When Jia was a toddler, she was allergic to so many things. My dreams of going to picnics with her (with woven picnic baskets, red and white checkered cloth, and me in my sundress! hahahaha!) was crushed the first time we went to UP and Jia was bitten by an insect. By the time, we got home, she was nursing a fever and was having a hard time breathing! At 18 months, Jia was prescribed with maintenance medicines. It broke my heart but what could I do? Maintenance meds for allergies (she had allergic rhinitis and asthma) were the lesser evil.

When Joya was born, he was more allergic than Jia! I remember pressing a cologne atomizer with my hand. I made sure that none of the cologne actually went to my hands. Hindi nabasa yung kamay ko at all! Then I touched Joya’s forehead and hair. In a few minutes, his skin was blotchy! I was shocked! One time, I told his yaya to bring Joya outside for a walk as he was just cooped up inside the house (we lived in a busy street). They were gone for 15 minutes. When they got back, Joya had hives!

When Joya was less than one year old, we found out he had asthma. In fact, he had atopic triad – asthma, allergic rhinitis, and atopic dermatitis! I realized that sooner or later, Joya would also be on maintenance meds. That realization my search for an alternative. I did not want my kids to grow up swallowing medicines left and right. I had a kidney concern for a time and my MIL passed away from kidney problems so if I could do anything to lessen the chances of my kids having kidney problems, I would.

My search led me to homeopathy. In a few months’ time, my kids’ allergic attacks lessened considerably. Whereas we used to go to the doctor every month for medicines, when we switched to homeopathy, we seldom had to do so. I became a believer!

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Book sharing: A very bad case of stripes

A-Bad-Case-of-Stripes-by-David-ShannonI discovered A Very Bad Case of Stripes last week during my mall/bookstore date with Jia two weeks ago. I loved it sooo much that even though I was in a self-imposed moratorium on book buying, I still bought it. The story (written and illustrated by David Shannon) was about a girl, Camilla Cream, who loved lima beans but did not eat them because she was very worried about what her classmates would think of her (everybody hated lima beans, you know! *rolleyes*). As the story opened, it was Camilla’s first day of school and she was having a hard time choosing her clothes for the day. She tried on 42 outfits (yes, 42!) because “there were so many people to impress!” While trying on the clothes, she looked at the mirror and screamed – she was covered in stripes! Her skin was striped from head to toe! What’s worse, when she went to school, her skin changed colors/patterns to whatever her classmates wanted it to be. It was as if her skin, just like her, cared so much about what other people thought and just followed the trend.

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My best mommy buy ever* **!

* My best mommy buy post-potty training 🙂
** This post is for mommies or for those who can tolerate poop stories. Proceed at your own risk! LOL!

When Joya got a bit bigger, it was so difficult whenever we were outside and we needed to wash him after he pooped. It was just so awkward carrying him over a sink to wash him (not to mention how awkward it was for the other washroom users). I needed a tabo so I could wash him in the toilet bowl but putting a normal water dipper in his diaper bag was not an option. LOL! I tried to use a small cup but because it was small, I needed to fill it with water at least five times!

I asked my mommy friends from Newlyweds@Work and some directed me to Daiso for foldable bowls. After several Daiso branches, I finally found THE perfect tabo!! It was not meant to be used as a dipper but as a fruit bowl but it was “foldable” so it took up little space inside the diaper bag or my bag (well, compared to a normal tabo). It was also big enough to contain all the water I needed for one washing/rinsing and because it was sold at Daiso, it was just Php88.00. And this, my friends, is the single best buy of my life as a mom… LOL!

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Montessori at home: Kids’ room

When I was in high school, my Mom took a class on Montessori education and her constant kwento of how Montessori schools do things piqued my interest. I enjoyed the reasoning behind the Montessori practices as explained by my Mom. And now that my kids are attending a Montessori school, I try to apply the principles, too, at home (that is why I train my kids early on to be independent as this is a basic tenet of Montessori).

One of the most basic Montessori principles is to have a place for everything and for everything to be in its place (oh yeah, that line – though I have edited it a little – is actually from Benjamin Franklin). For me, this is especially important when it comes to toys and books as these two are the most frequently used by my kids. I have already blogged about how I have organized our home library so this post focuses on how we organize toys.

My kids have lots of toys… well not as many as my friends’ kids but they have enough. Because I want each toy to have a specific place, I rotate the toys. At any one time, I only have less than 20 toys in their room — the rest are kept in the storage area. Why? First, I do not have enough space for all the toys to have its specific place. Second, I have realized that kids appreciate their toys more if they have not seen it for a while. Third, in my opinion, it is not healthy for kids to think that they have so many material things as I feel it promotes a sense of entitlement. So every three months, I rotate toys (keeping what is in the room and taking out some from the storage) and the joy in their faces when it’s rotation time is priceless. It’s like they have new toys every rotation time! Imagine, the joy of new toys without spending a centavo! How’s that for cheap?! Hahaha!

We have a couple of (kid-sized) toy shelves in their room and we do not have a toy chest. Why? Because toy chests make it easy for kids to just dump everything inside it without order. On the other hand, a toy shelf encourages a kid to put back a toy in its proper place. In their classroom, the same principle is applied and their class does not have an “Ate” or a teacher’s aide to help clean the classroom; all kids are expected to pack away the materials on their own.  I know this is getting off the subject but once, while having a chat with Jia’s teacher, one of her classmates spilled her baon (rice and viand) on the rug inside the classroom. The kid promptly got a broom (the small handheld one) and a dustpan and cleaned up the mess. She did not have to be told by the teacher what to do nor she needed help from an adut. Ang galing di ba? It just shows that kids, if they are taught how to do things properly, will be able to do so much without helicopter parenting. Ang galing talaga! 🙂 But anyway… 🙂


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Woohooo!!! I am back! And hopefully for good! I gave birth to my bunso (yes, I am claiming na bunso na siya! walang tututol! LOL!) five weeks ago (on Independence Day!) .

Presenting my other favorite girl (the other one being her Ate)…

Jasmin Iliana
7 lbs 1oz
50 cm

Iana 3

We call this little angel Iana (yup, that’s an I at the beginning… pronounced as /ee-yana/) and I love her to bits! After enduring nine months of roller coaster moods, having her in my arms gave me the peace I have been longing for. I know I am a serious contender for a non-maternal mom but seeing the three kids together (as long as the two eldest are not fighting. LOL!) is just priceless.

Kids Activities: T-Shirt Art

While I was on the computer, Jia, who wanted a “kids activity” (her term for anything we do together), started browsing her tv-free activities book for things we can do together and shortlisted T-Shirt Art. When I asked her if she had a shirt we could use, she immediately went to her closet and came back with a plain white shirt. Owwww-kay I could sense her excitement. Hahaha! I cautioned her that even if we had a plain shirt, we may not have the other needed materials (as I was not sure yet what was needed to actually put art on the shirt). She excitedly read aloud the things we needed (shirt, fabric crayons, tea towel (optional), white sheets of paper, iron). Luckily for her, because she has a mom who is fond of shopping (LOL!), we actually had fabric crayons onhand! (Fabric crayons are available in National Bookstore. A box of 8 colors is Php65.00.) So on to our impromptu project!

Jia drew her design on a sheet of paper using fabric crayons. I reminded her to color the design thickly so the color will transfer well. She drew a butterfly, diamonds, and hearts.

kids activities

While she was drawing, we discussed how it was more important to do one’s best than having a perfect product. Jia said that it was okay for the shirt not to come out perfectly as long as we do our best. 🙂

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