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 πŸ™‚

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…
morley_iron-causes-cancer-45
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 πŸ™‚ 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 πŸ™‚ 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 πŸ™‚ 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 πŸ™‚ 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 πŸ™‚
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 πŸ˜‰ (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 πŸ˜‰
Here’s a good detailed process for those who fear food borne diseases lol
http://www.thekitchn.com/recipe-lactofermented-mixed-pickles-recipes-from-the-kitchn-194011

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 πŸ™‚

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 πŸ˜‰ (…OK, they go to City Farm, Stirling, Mt Claremont markets and a few other places).

The Art of Frugal Hedonism

The Art of Frugal Hedonism was recommended by David Holmgren just last week when I went down to Murdoch to listen to him lecture. It was good to hear him talk and to refresh some of my ideas. As he was briefly reflecting on this book, he mentioned that he reckons that early adopters of thrift store shopping, such as himself and these hedonist friends of his, will reap more of the benefits than everyone else…

The Art of Frugal Hedonism with some fancy pants magnesium cream I've just made
The Art of Frugal Hedonism with some fancy pants magnesium cream I’ve just made

I spent my $25 on this small paperback and off I went on my merry way. Truth be told, I hung around chatting and stashed a few pastries in my bad for the other (gluttonous) half. Then I rushed home feeling guilty!
The irony struck me as my new acquisition sat looking at me for several days, despite my excitement! Not to worry, I have begun to read it and I feel like I’ve found some members of my tribe… they’re the wise ones and I’m the one still fumbling around trying to figure out how to relax and enjoy the sunshine.

Frugal hedonism has its roots deep in pleasure. Materialistic enjoyment. Ssensual pleasures… gluts of fruit, a good conversation, stroking your pet’s ears, letting yourself lay on the grass or touch some dried beans at the local shops… all gloriously free. This applies to really truly enjoyingΒ  purchases. Using a great product and really getting your value from it.
It does strike me that many of us… feel too busy to really actually enjoy anything. In my case, that is totally absurd. With two little kids I actually have all the time in the world… kinda! Smelling the roses, cuddling bunnies with Sally. Eating soursop flowers. Playing. We went to the beach for the first time this season and I just loved it πŸ™‚ Until I had to drag the kids home! Thankfully Rodney had agreed to do dinner and it all went pretty smoothly.

Certainly, our health and wellbeing can be improved by supplements, but the first step can be to just reconnect with living in the present. What would your diet look like if before you ate, you luxuriously thought to yourself… ‘what would taste most delicious to me right now?’… Each moment we can actually ask questions like this to really get back into the moment and out of our crazy approach to life. When you wake up in the morning, take a while to stretch, smile at those around you. Go in the sunshine. Give yourself a chance to live in the moment. Tickle someone πŸ™‚

I’ve done a batch of healing moisturising magnesium cream with shea butter, cacao butter, apricot kernel oil, magnesium chloride, with just a touch of the essential oils Frankincense, Myrrh and Geranium. A big jar is $30. I must say, I really enjoy hearing back if people are loving using it… thanks so much for the encouragement πŸ™‚ Let me know if you’d like some. I’m thinking about doing a market stall fairly soon, it’s all very exciting. Let me know by message if you have a few tips on which markets to go to.
For some talks by David Holmgren, check out Youtube. Retrofitting the suburbs is one of his ideas… he sees a lot of potential in our sprawl πŸ™‚ And of course, that means we should get started right where we are NOW.

Magnesium Cream

A dear friend had a problem – her baby wouldn’t sleep. As a mother of a couple of kids, the first of which was bad but not nearly as bad as this friends’ baby… I felt for her.
When I say that I felt for her, I felt it in my bones. Exquisite in all the remembered gory details of the sheer desperation for some shut-eye.
I thought about it a little and suggested some magnesium cream for both and some halva (a sweet treat made from ground sesame and honey) for the breastfeeding mum… ’cause we can eat πŸ˜‰

My first batch was quite firm, which isn’t bad to help it last, this batch is much softer… also not too bad lol!
Quoting from this friend “I’m blown away. I haven’t slept this well in forever.”
I’m delighted πŸ™‚

magnesium cream
magnesium cream

I’m offering this batch for sale… suggesting $10 for the little jars and $35 and $30 for the two larger ones. It took me all the spare time I had this evening to make and pop it up for sale πŸ™‚ Totally worth it in my opinion… for just one more mum to get just a touch more sleep!

Let me know if you want some (I’m getting some jars and deodorant containers in) and please express your interest in either Lavender; or Frankincense and Myrrh. The second option is recommended by my divining friend for a foot rub at the end of the night… it is absolutely good for adults wanting to prevent cancer and assist the body to detox. (check them out on Google Scholar, you’ll be surprised how amazing our botanicals on Earth are, almost as though they were designed for the job lol).

Magnesium Advocacy Group Summary

Morley Robbins – gotmag.org – has been doing some excellent readings of old and new research. What’s he’s uncovered might well be the smartest set of supplements recommended for our generation.

What’s new, once was old. Old fashioned remedies actually nailed a lot of what Morley recommends based on the science (forgotten though it might be). Bee pollen as a super food for energy, this is old folklore πŸ™‚ Kids’ constipation remedy using cod liver oil and orange juice…. and you’ll see how both of these are part of his protocol.

The other element that is hugely interesting – get rid of excess unbound metals including copper and iron. Iron is not the goodie it has been made out to be!

This blog is just to get the list on record so people I’m chatting with can refer to it. I’ve gotten it down fast so I hope it is easy enough to follow.
What I’m covering in summary:
Magnesium supplementation
Adrenal Cocktail
Detoxing metals
Ceruloplasim protocol – making yourself more energetic with good-copper protein πŸ™‚
Suggested scheduling
Magnesium Supplementation

  1. Dark Leafy Greens, pumpkin seeds, sprouted mung beans (biodynamic)
  2. The cheapest and most readily available tablet if you’re really low – Doctors Best. Click the header above if you want the types that are OK according to Morley Robbins.
  3. For those that only ‘do’ wholefoods – Amena’s Minerals – basically sea water with the sea salt taken off and all the goodies left behind.
  4. Epsom salt baths – take approx 1 cup epsom salts (magnesium sulphate), about the same of baking soda and a teaspoon or so of borax (boron, a mineral missing in soils needed to use magnesium and good for healthy teeth and bones).

Adrenal Cocktail

Adrenal Cocktail

1/2 tspn sea salt
1/2 tspn cream of tartar for the potassium
juice of an orange or other citrus (oranges have good potassium)

This is enough for one day – a double batch.
The idea behind the adrenal cocktail is to replenish what you lose from being constantly stressed and producing adrenaline – a chemical made from potassium, salt and Vitamin C! If you’re totally shattered, you can buy the ingredients for the adrenal cocktail at the supermarket – have a nice Epsom salt bath and see how you feel.
If you’re fancy pants, you can find alternative ingredients! (This website shows you all the various mineral profiles of foods … here is ginger http://nutritiondata.self.com/facts/vegetables-and-vegetable-products/2447/2)
Sweet potato chips with salt are like an adrenal cocktail for kids.

Detox Iron from the gut/brain

options to clear iron
options to clear iron

Also, you can use Frankincense! Morley is a wealth of info and he suggested through the olfactory nerve ie. smelling… might be the logical point for detox for the brain. Buy from me – if you’re local I can help with rollerballs and accessories.

Buy online magnesium, Vit C, cod liver oil with iherb- my recommendations

Ceruloplasim Protocol

Ceruloplasim 27 May 2016
Ceruloplasim 27 May 2016

Scheduling
On rising,Β  diotomaceous earth to help clear heavy metals, kill parasites and give a scrub to your innards

With breakfast, bee pollen- contains B vitamins, skip anything listing folic acid as some 30%+ of the population can’t handle it – get these from your local markets, wholefood C
Shower and use magnesium chloride spray for deodorant if it doesn’t itch too much (otherwise on feet before bed)

Water for the day with Amena Sea Minerals (dilute until you can’t taste it much)

Taurine mid morning on empty stomach, while you’re making your cocktail

Adrenal cocktail at 10am

Lunch, with magnesium tablets
Adrenal cocktail at 3pm

Dinner with magnesium tablets and Vitamin C. To support digestion, preceed dinner with warm water with apple cider vinegar (adrenal & digestive tonic)

Supper –Β  Cod liver oil with a little cream (can make into a fruity icecream or simply on a spoon), if constipated shake with fresh orange juice, a couple of hours before bed.

Bath – Epsom salts, Baking soda and Boron in your bath (if you don’t do baths look up the boron concentrate mix and take a teaspoon of the liquid premix each day).

Stabilised rice bran before bed, on an empty stomach to help clear toxic metals.
In bed, and this tip comes from David, Give yourself a food rub with Frankincense, Myrrh and olive oil (Vitamin E). Happily, I’ve got some mag cream for that and it is lush. Olive oil, beeswax, cacao butter, magnesium chloride, essential oils πŸ™‚

Plastic free July

There was a beautiful little Plastic Free July workshop that I sort of planned on attending today about getting rid of single use plastics in your home (think cling wrap) but didn’t in favour of spending some one on one time with my littlest at the markets this morning and then, going to vote with the family at lunch time and having a little play after πŸ™‚
After a challenging evening with this same little girl teething and not being able to sleep until 9pm (eek!) I found my mind returning to this and really wondering if I could do a bit better than I have been. Well, it couldn’t be easier really… start with a really low benchmark and the improvement can be really impressive!
I totally put bread ingredients into the bread machine tonight, plus a snack … then my mind wandered back to Plastic Free July. Persistent thoughts. I credit my mate Michele (the one with the pet homing pigeon Wally) for two years of updates on her progress going totally plastic free… I recall that she was really disappointed that postage stamps come with a freaking plastic backing!Some things do require structural change.

I’ve decided I’m going to have a bash at making these.

DIY Reusable Food Wrap

I already have bees wax and lovely little pieces of fabric for jam covers. I’ll bum some resin off a local with access to acacias and conifers… or even marri would be great. Perhaps marri would be the best because it is antibacterial and anti viral! Probably it might rival manuka honey from New Zealand.
We can avoid buying plastic to make these πŸ˜‰ Sweet! I might even sew a button and barter one or two away. Can’t wait to rock up to playgroup with the kids snacks wrapped in these lol… awesome!

If you’d like to make a public commitment… The website is http://www.plasticfreejuly.org and happily they have options for either all plastic (eek!) or only the top 4. You could possibly do all plastic but we typically buy meat wrapped in cling film, so I decided it would be a bit hard to really try to avoid that.

The top four are straws, plastic bottles, plastic bags & coffee cup lids. This is an easy one πŸ™‚

Agave Cordage – learning the slow arts

We just recently spent a delightful rainy Sunday afternoon in the garden, drinking wine and roasting potatoes in ‘Ned Kelly’… the old school fire pit at Barb’s. There may also have been chocolate <ahem…>
In the video below Barb takes us through the old way of making your own twine or cordage. This technique can be applied to almost any fiber that you have available…. and it really is very easy.

You could totally make one of these

Couple in hammock

Or even, for the hardcore babywearer…

Baby in handmade woven carrier, suspended from mother’s forehead!

(As a side note, there are heaps of babywearing groups in your local area, check on Facebook and attend a meeting to get trained in safety and borrow wraps and buckles to see which style you prefer)

In the case of agave, it is an excellent choice for finger rolling cordageΒ  because it grows well in this climate with zero inputs and can be easily harvested by slicing off a rather tall leaf and boiling for an hour or more.

Barb with tall agave leaf
Barb with tall agave leaf
Barb with cooked agave leaf showing fibers
Barb with cooked agave leaf showing fibers

After this, it just needs pounding to remove the juices and leave the fiber… then finger rolling.
This is using two sets of fibers, twisting both independently, then twisting the two together. The knack would seem to be in remembering to twist the sets of fibers one way but then the two together must be in the opposite direction. …good thing that there is a video lol…

 

 

 

 

Barter Your Surplus – Moisturising Body Whip

I made some whipped moisturiser to help my little girl with some troubled skin… she loves learning how to wash the dishes but the detergent is not great for her skin. Of course, it’s great for mine as I’m not the one washing the dishes! (just kidding, I totally try to help her)

Moisturising cream with healing essential oils
Moisturising cream with healing essential oils

The recipe

  • 1/2 cup shea butter
  • 1/2 cup cocoa butter
  • 1/2 Cup apricot oil
  • 30 drops of your choice of essential oil

Measure (glass or metal instruments help as you can melt the oils off later), melt in a double burner (as you do for chocolate), chill briefly, whip with hand held or electric beaters.

To easily dispense, put in sandwich bag, seal, push down to one corner and cut that corner off… pipe in.

I had some nice small glass containers to hand and knew that I was making more than I needed… so the desire to barter was born.
Of course, I’d been lurking around the wonderful world of Facebook to see how bartering worked for a while. I took as nice a photo as I could manage, saving myself the trouble of writing the essential oils down so I wouldn’t forget their names… by including them in the photo below.

The fancy black background is our stove πŸ˜‰

To date, just for two of my spares, I’ve received a nice pink frangipani cutting, a lot of citrus fruit and a killer sense of getting a bargain. Like that special sense that superheroes use when they are needed… like that… except for a bargain!
I’m still waiting on my homemade slice and the pasta sauce… for another two jars… one lady had a sick little baby so delayed somewhat and another lady wanted to catch up soon. So I’m assuming that will go ahead.
In terms of cost, it wasn’t that cheap an exercise… the little containers were $1.10 each, with perhaps 12 drops of essential oils in each. (see this table for costs if you’re setting yourself up to do the same)

However 2/3rds of the oils were a result of a barter which I consider a total bargain (my usual sweet potatoes with a half dozen eggs). And I’ve got heaps left… plus wax as well.
So I think I’ll do this one again… when the creative urge rises πŸ™‚

By the way, for those that are interested in those blasted sweet potatoes (just kidding, I love them a little too much), I managed to sell a few. It’s late in the season as I’ve given away a number of full bags of them, plus armfuls to any local neighbourhood kid who is interested enough to have a dig when I’m doing the same. In time, some of these kids might do all the work for me… wouldn’t that be awesome? I tell them we’re hunting for treasure. What’s your retirement plan? πŸ˜‰