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Hodgepodge from The Geranium Farm

Debbie Sharp Loeb, teacher by training but full-time mom to a disabled son, craftsperson, bead artist, great cook, creative homemaker & terrific spotter of cool new products for everything under the sun, presents Hodgepodge: recipes, household hints, stories about children, friends & relatives, cool stuff, music, & much more.

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Friday, December 02, 2016

Episcopal Flag

For the history about the design for the Episcopal Flag from the Geranium Farm's "A Few Good Writer's" in case you missed seeing it on the Farm page: Check it out from the original link here.

Friday, October 28, 2016

7 Signs Your Upper Respiratory Infection is Actually Pneumonia

It's that time of the year again!
 1. A fever reaches 101 degrees or higher, there's a greater chance that URI has developed into pneumonia.
2.  Your heart beating faster than normal. Anything over 100 beats per minute is considered a rapid heart rate. If it persists, seek medical attention.
3.   A tightening of the chest and pain. Pneumonia is an infection of the lungs. The pain is a signal that the URI has developed into something more serious.
4. A cough is consistently wet and rattly, this could mean that the URI has turned into pneumonia. If you have a cough that keeps bringing up mucus and doesn’t bring relief, you may have pneumonia.
5. If mucus being produced by your cough is tinged with blood or has a rusty color, this is a potential sign that the discharge is coming from deep in the lungs, which indicates a lower respiratory infection such as pneumonia. Let your doctor know about this change as it may require a different course of treatment.
6.  Chills are a sign of fever and that the body is working overtime to regulate temperature. This is a sign that an upper respiratory infection has developed into pneumonia.
7. If your breathing becomes shallow or labored, you may have pneumonia. This is a serious symptom that may require a nebulizer breathing treatment in order to open the lungs. Consult your physician immediately to avoid further issues from oxygen deprivation such as lightheadedness, blood flow issues, or losing consciousness.

 Check it out here:

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

How to Make Yourself Truly Happy

Friday, August 26, 2016

25 Ways to Say 'No' to Your Kids Without Actually Saying No

"If you've ever found yourself in a scenario with your children in which their whining and crying is coming at you from every direction and you're spitting a million noes at them, you know that's typically an inefficient way of communicating. It's hard to say "no" to our kids, but sometimes we simply have to.
For example, instead of screaming, "No," if your child is asking for candy before lunch, offer them a choice to have one piece now or a few pieces after they eat all of their meal. Or if your child is throwing Legos across the room at your head, tell them that's not how to play, it's making you sad that they're hitting you, and offer to help them build something or show them how to play correctly.
This definitely takes more time, but using one of these positive alternatives to no (tweaked to fit your situation appropriately) will help you and your children to communicate much more efficiently overall.
Here, 25 ways to say no without actually using that dreaded one-syllable word."
1. Let me show you how to do it.
2. I know you want to, but we can't right now.
3. I can help you.
4. Let's take a minute to think about this.
5. That isn't going to work.
6. Maybe some other time.
7. Let's do this instead.
8. Tell me more.
9. That's not how we are going to do it.
10. I can't let you.
11. Let's try something different.
12. Can you show me how we are supposed to do that?
13. Come away from there.
14. That isn't yours - let's find yours.
15. What is our rule?
16. I'd be disappointed if you did that.
17. Is there another way to do that?
18. That's not the best choice.
19. Not right now.
20. What do you think the answer is?
21. You know better.
22. I wish we could, but we can't.
23. How about this?
24. There's a better way to do that.
25. That isn't safe.

Friday, July 08, 2016

Fake Charities

Carol Stone from Ways of the World here on the Geranium Farm, gave us a heads up on this one from Charity Navigator which I had recommended in the past before you make a donation.

Check out the list here before donating any of your hard earned money: 

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

25 Clichés That Are Actually True and How They Could Change Your Life

1. Struggle is good.
2. Don’t complain.
3. Spend time with the people you love.
4. Don’t start a relationship if you’re not in love.
5. Exercise daily.
6. Keep a journal.*
7. Be grateful.
8. Don’t care about what people think.
9. Take more risks.
10. Pick an industry, not a job.
11. Lead the way.
12. Money isn't important.
13. Be nice.
14. Learn every day.
15. Rest before you are tired.
16. Don't judge.
17. Think about others.
18. Give without expecting something in return.
19. There's no end game.
20. Enjoy small things.
21. Don't take yourself so seriously.
22. Don't blame people.
23. Create something.
24. Never look back for too long.
25. Take action.
  To read in full go here:
*Here’s the easy way to do this that I use:
*Scroll down to where it says Hobby Plan that is free forever. That’s what I use.

Monday, June 27, 2016

8 Alternative Uses for Listerine

 Read the comments there to see other uses people have posted.

  1.  The ingredients found in Listerine (eucalyptus, alcohol, and thyme), can kill bacteria that cause acne. Dab Listerine on the affected area using a clean cotton ball—just be sure not to use too much, and be cautious if you have sensitive skin.
  2.  Skip the pricey products and use mouthwash to get rid of your pet’s fleas. You can use Listerine in a couple of different ways, including mixing it with shampoo in a bath or diluting it with water and using it as a spray. To get step-by-step instructions on how to use Listerine to kill fleas, check out this guide from eHow.
  3.  Banish stinky feet and alleviate athletes foot. To keep foot odor at bay, soak a cotton ball in Listerine and rub it all over your feet. You can apply a small amount along the inside of your shoes, as well. Using Listerine has more than one perk for feet—it has been shown to help alleviate athletes foot, too.
  4.  Eliminate germs and odors in your garbage disposal. Speaking of stinky things, have you ever been cooking in your kitchen and noticed a foul smell emanating from your sink? To eliminate sink odors, simply pour half a cup of mouthwash down the disposal.
  5.  Out of deodorant? Use Listerine! Okay, I know what you’re thinking—a KCL run out of deodorant?! Perhaps it’s not likely, but on that off chance that you actually do find yourself without a stick of deodorant, now you can have a backup. Simply dab a bit of the mouthwash on a cotton ball or towel, wipe it on your underarms and you’re good to go!
  6.  Kill the germs on your toothbrush. Immersing your brush in Listerine for 20 minutes has been proven to be just as effective as soaking your brush in expensive toothbrush sanitizers.
  7.  Use the anti-fungal ingredients in Listerine to get rid of dandruff. Dandruff, which is actually caused by a fungus called Pityrosporum, can not only be embarrassing, but it can be extremely uncomfortable and itchy. To use Listerine as a dandruff treatment, wet your hair thoroughly with the mouthwash and wrap your hair in a towel. Let it sit for 15 minutes and then shampoo as normal. You may need to do multiple treatments before the Listerine kills off all of the fungus and eliminates the dandruff completely. 
  8.  Clean your shower, toilet, sinks, and floors—and kill mold and mildew. If you’re using
    Listerine on shower mold or mildew, you can use it full strength, but if you want to use it to clean other things around the house, fill a spray bottle with half Listerine and half water. Not only will you have a clean house, but it will smell minty fresh!

Monday, May 09, 2016

20 Ways to Use Epsom Salt Around the House By Angela Brown

Epsom salt isn't actually the table salt we all know. The mineral mixture, named for a saline spring in England, is actually a combination of magnesium and sulfate. This popular mineral is touted for its health benefits as well as uses in cleaning and gardening projects, according to
Epsom salt can be used in dozens of ways for health, beauty, and cleaning projects. Check out just a few of the beauty and health hacks you can do with this mineral, according to DIY &Crafts.

1. Clean your hair: If your hair is particularly greasy, you can pull excess oils right out by adding a bit of Epsom salts to your shampoo. Wash and rinse as usual. 
2.  Feet scrub: Winter weather leaves toes and feet dry, cracked and gross. Get rid of dry skin by combining a cup of Epsom salt with olive oil, castile soap and some essential oils and scrubbing your feet once or twice a week. 
3.  Bye bye frizz, hello volume: Mix equal parts hair conditioner and Epsom salts together. Heat the mixture into a pan. Then starting at the roots and working your way down, massage the mixture into your hair. Let set for 20 minutes and rinse. This works great for getting rid of frizz and adding volume to your hair.  
4. Wash your face: Mix Epsom salts with liquid soap or face cream. Rub gently into your skin and rinse. You'll get a moisture boost and remove dead skin.
5. Deflake the lips: Mix a bit of Epsom salt with petroleum jelly and massage it into your lips to remove dead skin. 
6. Ease a headache: If you have an aching head after a rough day at the office (or with the kids), try soaking in an Epsom salt bath. The salts help relieve tension in your muscles and can ease your headache. 
7. Nix tummy troubles: Help ease constipation symptoms by drinking a teaspoon of Epsom salts in a glass of water. The magnesium should help get things flowing again.
8. Have a better morning after: If you had a little too much red wine last night, you can ease hangover symptoms. Sip a teaspoon in a bit of water to help flush out toxins. Make sure to drink tons of water to stay hydrated though! 
9. Fade a bruise: Skip the raw meat compress and grab the Epsom salts instead. Mix two tablespoons of Epsom salts with a little water and apply it to the bruised area. 
10. Get more shut-eye: Soak in an Epsom salt bath for about 20 minutes before dozing off to help you relax and loosen up for a better night's sleep.
11. Ease muscle pain: Enjoy an Epsom salt bath after a hard day at the gym or working in the yard to alleviate muscle soreness and speed recovery. 
12. Remove a splinter: Apply salt to the skin over the splinter to help pull it to the surface. Bid a fond farewell to the painful tweezer method! 
Wellnessmama and offer a few suggestions for using Epsom salts around the house and garden:
13. Plant fertilizer: One tablespoon of salt to tomato plant soil can help give you bigger plants. 
14. Clean the bathroom: Mix one part Epsom salt with one part liquid dish soap, scrub grout and tile well. 
15. Water your houseplants: Mix a few tablespoons of Epsom salt with water and feed your plants as usual. 
16.  Deter Slugs: Sprinkle a bit of Epsom salts onto the patio to keep slugs at bay on rainy days. 
17. Boost your roses: Add a tablespoon of Epsom salts to your soil to promote healthier roses. 
18. Clean the Washer: Fill your washing machine with hot water. Add Epsom salt and run a regular cycle to get rid of build up on the insides of the machine. 
19. Protect your plants: Add Epson salts to your grass and plants to keep bugs at bay. 
20. Green up your grass: Add two tablespoons of Epsom salts to a gallon of water and sprinkle it on your grass to keep it green. The magnesium prevents yellowing.  

Friday, April 01, 2016

Hodgepodge Turns 11

In vain have you acquired knowledge
if you have not imparted it to others.

Deuteronomy Rabbah
(c.900, commentary on the Book of Deuteronomy)

Love sharing with you all these years!

Tuesday, March 29, 2016

20 Questions That Could Change Your Life

Finding the answers starts with posing the right questions—and Martha Beck has 20 to get you started. 
Go to the link to see the questions:

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