Self care – deleting the auto-responses

We were laughing at the mum (thug?) life the other day, and I commented that mental health had become a higher priority… than any of my previous hobbies. There was something funny and… and accurate.

So out with so much TV and in with energy work and having my ‘bars run’ each week. Having someone else hold my head (running 32 points in turn) while I fall asleep snoring! on their massage table has been an amazing contribution. This shifts the stress, until the next time a trip to the supermarket reminds me to be ‘normal’ again!

How joyful can I choose to be today?! Just asking a question changes everything. Or being with someone who is very present with us and willing to contribute…


Recently, I’ve discovered Delany Delaney, a mentor/facilitator/teacher for healing and energy work. And telepathy! LOL! Yes, her experiences working with telepathy have been documented in this lovely documentary Beyond Words

Today, I’m working through her Cracking the Auto Response Codes coursework. I’m not sure what will show up but I chose the one that included work and clearing the reactions that we don’t choose but that we’ve picked up from society/family/friends/WHATEVER…

This is absolutely pivotal during our parenting journey. Getting rid of the kneejerk reactions and stepping into more joyful ways of being.

Thanks Delany…

Mushroom cultivation, old school

Well, I’ve been meaning to share this more widely and now that home entertainment is the new “in thing” during this crazy Corona Covid19 season ….and cooler weather is just around the corner, the time is now!

I’ve tried my hand, successfully at growing mushrooms from a kit, much later on I’ve done a couple of rounds of oyster mushrooms into wood logs (these should be fresh and still have good bark on them). But then I realised that I much prefer FIELD MUSHROOMS!!

This is totally a sensible thing to try for those of you who have ample access to horse poo, including those who live a bit close to horse riding schools or agistments… they still need to get rid of their waste materials or risk the local ground water.
And who like to eat mushrooms. So not my kids lol… but still we used to make a killer mushroom tarragon soup and its worth making again.

Let’s be honest, I haven’t tried it myself but Paul Stamets made it sound easy in his Mycelium Running book so I’m cautiously optimistic after good success with oyster mushrooms on log culture.

I have this beautiful old book at home called the Australian Gardener that includes some really really basic gardening from the nearly one hundred years ago. They didn’t have Bunnings, so I reckon you’re about right during lock down in those countries where they would let you swing by the back end of the horse stables and the grocery store!

Mushroom Instructions from The Home Gardener, Leslie B. Brunning,1937, Robertson & Mullens Ltd, pp115-117
Mushroom Instructions from The Home Gardener, Leslie B. Brunning,1937, Robertson & Mullens Ltd, pp115-117

In other words, sheltered morning sun in winter.

You can order spawn online (our rules atm would mean probably it would have to be from within the state) or you can try one of the following approaches…
1. Take a spent mushroom kit, remove any contaminated spots and plant some healthy spawn.
2, Get some field mushrooms from the store, perhaps ones that are mostly closed, cut them up with good hygiene and use their stems to plant the bed. Note that the tissue inside your mushroom is still alive that the parts that haven’t touched the air are hygienic… so you can hope that the base of the stem or the inside of the cap will grow.
2. Spore prints. Recommend you read Stamet’s book as mentioned above but the general gist (from memory) is to put the sterile spores into very clean water with some sugar and salt, leave for one-two days (with some good stirring) to begin to grow and then water your prepared sterile bed with this alive mix.

Ways to quickly sterilise your equipment might include a container of hot water (over 60 degrees C), a lighter or alcohol and then a lighter. Gloves might be a good idea but equally just use some tweezers (don’t use your hands directly to touch the inside of the mushroom or spore prints) and dump into a nice clean jar. Work under an extractor fan or in a sterile box with arm holes if you’re really excited.
If your risk profile is a bit more cowboy style, don’t bother with all of that but work quickly and cleanly and direct your breath away from your working surfaces.

Some contamination in your outdoors mushroom bed might occur but the speed of composting (with heat) and subsequently your hygienic technique when handling the spawn are what will make the difference.

Rapidly growing spawn is healthy spawn.

So do let me know how you go! If we’re still on some level of ‘lock down’ this winter it should be an interesting project.

Newer techniques are well covered by Milkwood and there are plenty of locals who are growing mushrooms in jars and laundry baskets and big tubs. Have fun!

Edible Skin Care – Permamamma Magnesium Creams

A few years ago, back when I was pregnant for the second time with Sasha I began to use only the most simple ingredients for my skin care. For fear of an itchy attack which in the first pregnancy really caused me a lot of upset. The commercial products seemed to cause the problem! During the second pregnancy I learnt very quickly after one commercial cream caused me two weeks of itchy!!! … and shifted over to natural oils and butters like rose hip oil, coconut oil, shea butter PLUS minerals.
These days I’m free from constraints… but why not feed your skin as you do your tummy? The products totally enter your system and need to be either detoxed or USED. So are your products contributing to your health?!
I use my own Permamamma Magnesium Cream – usually as a body moisturiser but sometimes on the face as a night moisturiser too – I’m the main tester for any new products and will sometimes grab a local friend. It keeps the muscles nice and relaxed and improves any aches or pains.Permamamma Magnesium Cream

I have been known to give it away free to pregnant ladies because it simply makes their lives sooooo much nicer! Swelling, aches, restless legs … even preterm labour are all linked to magnesium deficiency.
And of course, it is safe and beneficial for baby sleep, just start slow with a massage on the bottoms of the feet/legs and see how they like it.

Grab some from the Woodvale Weigh and Pay in the northern suburbs or contact us on Facebook

Please note this ‘orginal’ product is not suitable for eczema or broken skin  as it contains magnesium chloride which can sting. It won’t injure the skin and in fact, we’ve had some brave souls actually use it to treat their eczema (we’ve seen some dramatic overnight improvements and  if this is you, can you let me know how its going now?!?!) but geez, be kind to yourself! … just message me for a similar cream with a different form of magnesium… I get the feeling it is a bit slow and steady with eczema… and more comfortable!


Why use magnesium on your skin?

I’ve been loving giving massages recently, using my magnesium cream that I’ve been making for a couple of years now trading as Permamamma.

My experience so far is that people get off my massage table free from pain and experiencing far more freedom in their bodies. Aside from my magic hands (ahem!)… the magnesium is a natural anti inflammatory and reduces the perception of any pain – real relief and easier than eating more leafy  greens and seeds (another way to get the same result).

People sort of might be aware of magnesium as a supplement and what doesn’t necessarily occur to us is that our skin can be the way to supplement.  These days I don’t take very many supplements, just when the body seems to require it. Except for magnesium… via the skin in a food grade cream base!

Permamamma Magnesium Cream
Permamamma Magnesium Cream

The original recipe uses a salt form of magnesium chloride which is dissolved in filtered water to make ‘magnesium oil’ (no oil is involved in that) and then used to make a cream. The reason to make it into a cream is that the magnesium “oil” stings most people. For the tough ones  its a great choice and can even reduce body odor.
The original recipe has magnesium chloride so is no good for eczema or broken skin… please feel free to request a special order of eczema friendly cream! I’ve got two forms of mag for that and am totally curious to see how much difference it can make.

Sleep for Kids and Babies

A mum friend has little kids who sometimes do not sleep. We’re talking up in the middle of the night for hours.
Of course, some parents just don’t experience this although all parents wake up with the tiny ones in the first months… We had an interesting sleep journey with our eldest! (lol you can just keep asking ‘how does it get better than this?’, because sometimes its better to think that it can get better than to really dwell on it)
For us, it definitely improved with me as the breastfeeding mum using minerals and essential oils.  If you’re done breastfeeding it is still worth seeing what works for you as your kids have your body as their foundation for life.

A mum who is depleted will have kids who are depleted, the baby tends to follow the mum emotionally too of course. In many senses, caring for the mother will tend to sort the kids out too… especially where the kids are doing what the mum is doing… like… sharing an epsom salt, bicarb and borax bath! Don’t get me wrong… ‘sharing’ could be as simple as putting your own feet in their bath while you’re helping them. Or popping them in your bath after you’re done. Do not prioritise the kids over yourself! Take your downtime lovely mums.

Magnesium baths and creams are a good start. My cream is available from me (Permamamma on Facebook or Woodvale Weigh and Pay).

Permamamma Magnesium Cream
Permamamma Magnesium Cream

The original is safe for babies and perfect for a pre-bedtime massage, with these things always start slow and build up if you have a sensitive child or adult. The original isn’t suitable for broken skin but please contact me via Facebook if you’d like one that you can use on eczema for example.

We can add extra essential oils to magnesium cream or bath (ensure you dilute it too for the bath, using any other oil like apricot kernel, fractionated coconut oil, even olive oil is fine) or diffuse: –

babies need it very dilute.

and I’d add Balance blend for some adults, those who are working too hard and feel frantic some days. You know who you are!

Here’s my link if you’re interested in purchasing directly (It’s best value to get a wholesale account with enrolment kit first):


Adrenal cocktails are an excellent addition. You know if you have adrenal fatigue if you get super tired suddenly at 10am and 3pm (Severe adrenal fatigue impacts sleep) … the times when you are meant to get a shot of natural adrenaline but your body has run out of ingredients! These are potassium, salt etc, and Vitamin C.

  • 4 Oz. of Orange Juice – fresh squeezed is best, but not essential (the Vitamin-C Complex makes sure that the minerals noted below get to the Liver to then nourish the Adrenals)
  • 1/4 tsp of Cream of Tartar (this is an excellent source of Potassium or you can use Potassium Bicarbonate)
  • 1/4 tsp of fresh ground Real Salt or Sea Salt (this is an excellent source of Sodium & 90+ other minerals)

I could go into food choices but honestly, just get on the minerals and follow your body’s lead. Slowly does it lovely friends.

Reducing your stress response in any way you can think of is a great idea. Don’t take anyone’s advice before your own instincts.

For me, we are done with the baby days, I can sleep properly most nights and I’m super grateful.  One last thing, something I wish I’d discovered earlier…

On a night when my eldest has any issue falling asleep, say after a very exciting lovely day, I run his ‘bars’… thirty two points on the head that help to relieve stress and tension and he’s out like a light in 5-8 minutes. He knows it and I know it. And I don’t need to do it every night or even every week. Boom! Miracles. So grateful!

Louises dandylion
Louise’s dandylion




Wild Movement

Wild Movement includes stuff us crazy humans have been doing for generations… climbing, balancing, running, crawling and wrestling… to name a few 🙂
Reuben is four years old and he freaking loved it!

We just got home from our time with Steve on an organic farm with his obstacle course!

Greens for foraging and Steve vaulting a log

I’d been looking for something sort of outdoors and for strength, fitness and motor skill development. The other month he absolutely loved climbing the Treetops Climb in Dwellinup … but I didn’t fancy doing a two hour drive every week ;P And of course, there was no work involved that got his lungs and heart working!

Enter Wild Movement… jumping from log to log, team work and chases 🙂 Best sport ever.

Seems like we’ll be back for more every Saturday lol. I’ll let you know how we go! Sasha didn’t join in as much as I would have liked, sometimes wandering off but for anyone who has a 2.5 year old to see them swinging on a rope and having a great time balancing and climbing… its a win for all ages.


Kids in trees… magic

Transferable skills to parkour, also known as ‘free running’… which is often set in a city leaping from roof to roof and across bollards… but honestly, who doesn’t need a bit less screen time and a bit more nature in their lives.

Kombucha and what’s growing

These days I’m all about quick and easy… and healthy sometimes coming a very late third place *ahem*…
Kombucha is one of those things, it hits the spot when you’re super tired and want say a huge sweet bubbly black soft drink… you’ve got nano seconds to redirect yourself onto this brew 🙂

Happily, you can get something that can resemble a sweet sparkling apple cider. With a multitude of other health outcomes. Apparently it can do amazing stuff like give retired folk their fertility back in their sixties (don’t say I didn’t warn you!).

Also, vinegar (one of the components of kombucha) can clean your gut of various things, including iron… the current villain in the biochemistry mystery thriller that is ongoing at www.gotmag.org

Because I’m a bit of a cowboy… I pretty much wing it including but not limited to pouring the sugar in and ‘measuring it’ by eye. But for those I’ve given a scoby, guidelines;
1. Get a huge glass jar, two are even better!
2. Make a sweet black tea with say 1 cup of sugar per litre. Make this hot in the jar… making it sterile!
3. Put the lid on or cover with a cloth, let cool until say next day
4. Pour in the living kombucha that you have saved from last time, keeping it well away from the boiling tea! This could be a scoby with some liquid or simply some nice living liquid from a previous batch. NB. This can help you to scale up your production if you’re keen to do many jars at once. Just make sure you use enough say 1 cup of strong brew.

That’s it! Drink it after a bit, when it tastes good. Most people wait at least 5-7 days…
Pour over ice without disturbing the floating living SCOBY and you’ll get a few bubbles…
…to catch volumes of proper bubbles, like a good cider or beer, let brew for say 5-7 days in the big jar with the cloth, then decant into bottles and put their lids on. Leave on the bench for say 2 days until bubbles form, these are from the yeast that are part of the living kombucha. Refrigerate! Be careful as they could explode when left on the bench for too long.
If you’re sick, leave it in the jar for 11 to 18 days until it doesn’t taste so sweet any more in order to avoid the sugar.

Kombucha brewing and some in bottles with lids to catch the bubbles and then pop in the fridge ready to drink
Kombucha brewing and some in bottles with lids to catch the bubbles and then pop in the fridge ready to drink

Iron causes cancer

When we ‘fertilise’ the ocean with iron filings, we get a huge bloom that was touted as a potential carbon sink.
If you do the same to your gut, you get pathogens like candida.
And your biochemistry? I’m glad you asked…
Science on prostate cancer and iron dysregulation

rusty cast iron pans
rusty cast iron pans

To clean up your system, you can drink kombucha or apple cider vinegar 🙂 Also, a touch of stabilised rice bran on an empty stomach.
Or, go the leeches for an ironic blast from the past!

Cooking on well seasoned cast iron pans means you’re cooking on a layer of nice old oil/ fat 🙂 Not iron. But mostly, we should be alert for iron filings in baby food, cereals and supplements.

Morley Robbins has a few very interesting videos on iron and magnesium. Get into it!

New logo

So grateful for my artist friend Barb helping me out today with her wicked Photoshop skills for the new logo for my magnesium creams 🙂 We’ve got an awesome start and I couldn’t be happier with the level of input that I was able to have and her gentle approach. If you want to say thanks to her from me, please feel free to ask her about buying some of her art – stained glass feathers are in stock at Yanchep and a couple of other locations, she’s also lining up Carnaby prints on tote bags and phone covers for us permaculture nerds.

Permamamma logo

Pink Cauliflower Ferments…

We’ve been eating a lot cleaner here and my default setting when I’m tired is now to stay home and forage. I will not turn up my nose at any decent food that doesn’t need a lot of preparation 🙂 I might have bought dinner but I’m trying to embrace a cleaner diet to help all of us improve our gut health and a sense of being rested…nourishing us in more than one sense 🙂
We had a huge play day with friends – water play, trampoline, chasey and music… our 22-month girl Sasha managed to skip her nap, which is great because otherwise she keeps us company most of the evening and it stops us from experiencing any silence, ever. And that makes for terrible parenting!
The gluttonous husband was kind enough to fry me some salmon and I could have had the same sides as the kids but I went for my lacto fermented cauliflower, at least partly because I couldn’t be bothered to go outside for lemon for the sour component of this meal!
I should mention he’s just made me tiramisu I suppose. And I must remember to place another request for candied blood orange dipped in tempered chocolate 😉 (I’m not even kidding!)

My precious lacto fermented cauliflower originally came from Michelle the biodynamic farmer and is just the most beautiful thing ever… pink like a flower and beautiful shapes. With sour, zingy flavours like champagne. For those who like sour tastes, it is just the best!
This is not my image, since I was too busy stuffing my face with food I didn’t have to cook! And feeling pretty virtuous lol…

Lacto fermented veggies
Lacto fermented veggies

It is so super duper easy that you’d think that there must be something wrong with this process. But no, absolutely it is cool bananas 😉
Here’s a good detailed process for those who fear food borne diseases lol

But honestly, bung some salt and perhaps sugar in a very clean jar and add nice clean water (this might have been boiled but it must be cool). Florets of pink cauliflower and some leaves or stems to make it stay down. Spices if you like. Make sure the veggies stay under the water. Wait a day or several to allow the resident bacteria to colonise. Tasting until you like it, then refrigerate. Boom! I suppose the best might be cucumbers, but saurkraut, cauliflower and cucumbers are all pretty awesome and should just about get you through the year. Maybe olives too … technically a fermented food! Yum tapenade! Grapes? Oh, yes, all the good things in life. Camembert. OK, stop… this is making me want a cheese platter with wine. All the best things in life truly.

This type of living is what Frugal Hedonism is all about. Sheer enjoyment of the simple things. Like pink cauliflower zing.

I really really love biodynamic farming, especially since Michelle mentioned they had remarkably high magnesium, which is what we are all a bit low in due to the food supply not using sea weed or guano anymore! Since about the 1970s (we have all gotten fatter as a result, although there are a few variables here). This is the Achilles heel in modern agriculture and biodynamics is freaking nailing it. Even more than organics, but I wouldn’t say no to that either 🙂

I won’t tell you how to obtain Michelle’s veggies or mention that she does killer chorizo because actually, they could sell out and that would not make me a happy pickler 😉 (…OK, they go to City Farm, Stirling, Mt Claremont markets and a few other places).