piektdiena, 2011. gada 25. novembris

Aloe Vera

All this time we have lived at our parents house in the countryside. It has been lovely, no words can express. But it is time that we spent at least part of the week in Riga, our city apartment. We've been "visiting" couple of times already for one or two nights at the time, bringing "stuff" along. We didn't really manage to inhabit the place before baby arrived, so now we try to make it more cosy with each visit.
Next visit- plants! And first and most important plant that will live in our apartment will be.. (imagine drums and orchestra here) ALOE VERA!!! (Applause!)

This is amazing window sill inhabitant and should live in every house. I got mine from my mom, so it's already 3 years old with more babies growing in the pot. 3-5 year old plants are ready to use as home medicine. During the travel from it's previous spot to a bag two "fat" leaves broke. No no, I am not sad about it at all! I'm actually happy, because it's time for some home made medicine on green carpet.
So here's what I did with it:

  • I cleaned the leaves, sliced each one on half and chopped in tiny bits. 
  • I placed the chopped aloe vera in a glass jar and covered with honey. The proportion is 1:1. 
  • Then- closed the lid and placed in a dark place, best in the fridge. 
After couple of days it will be ready to use in case of cough, colds, weakness. If you add lemon juice and hot water to this mix, you can drink it as energy boosting tea. Just remember not to do it in the evening, it can have an effect like coffee!

Another natural remedy use-

  • Simply cut the leave and use the juice to treat dry, rough, chapped skin. 
  • It is antibacterial and regenerative, it also reduces pain, so it's wonderful to treat cuts and bruises.
  • It can cool and treat sunburns and other burns.
  • Good to use on furuncules and purulent wounds.
  • You can put it also on insect bites to heal. 
  • It is good to treat various problems of digestive apparatus
  • Aloe Vera is improving liver cell operation.
  • It has anti-cancerous properties and strengthens immunity. 
  • It has anti-inflammatory, anti-viral, anti-fungal and anti-bacterial properties.
  • It contains many vitamins- D, A, C, E, B1, B2, B3, B6, B12, beta carotene, minerals, amino-acids, ferments, enzymes etc. 

What else I could have done with it? Home made cosmetics! Before using you should cover whole leave in foil and then some paper to make it really dark for the leave inside the "package" and place in the fridge for at least few days, better couple weeks. Then it is ready to use. How to use it?

  • Cut the leave and cover your face and neck with the juice instead of a cream couple of times a week.
  • Mix with honey and egg yolk for a nice, softening face or hair mask. 
  • Mix with honey, lemon juice, olive oil for another hair mask. 

In the apartment where space is limited you must choose wisely how to use it. And when it comes to plants, isn't that wonderful that they can be more than just something green and good looking?

Crafts for Baby I- crocheted blanket with flowers

After millionth reminder from my husband, I'm finally going public with my crafts on green carpet!
I believe that anything you create with your own hands is first of all special and full of love, because you have dedicated your time, fantasy, work and attention to someone (or yourself!!!) to do it for them (or yourself :) ). 
Second- it is also green, because it is a one baby-step at a time against this superconsumerism world, where everything is being overproduced, created cheap and bad quality just to buy the next one very soon. So I am taking my time to make things to make them special for those I love and to participate in this very quiet revolution against shelves of supermarkets that are full of stuff we don't need and stuff that we need but that won't last as long as we need it. The best buy is the one you do not make! 
So first public project- baby crocheted baby blanket with flowers from baby alpaca wool. I did this when I was expecting my little one, still having just a feeling that it is a girl. I love the colors- they remind me of early spring. And my little one enjoys it now during her naps. 

Film review- One Life

Crafts  season on green carpet has been full steam ahead for quite a while now. But while hands are busy crocheting, knitting and embroidering, I love to have something on the background.. like a movie.. yesterday it was One Life by BBC Earth Films. Even though it was nothing about Climate Change issues or threats that we as human beings impose on animals, it was inspirational. It was heart warming and filling me with simple joy about life on this planet. Both children and adults would love it I believe. So it is great to watch when you want something with beautiful scenes and lovely stories without pressure of sadness on them! Enjoy watching!

otrdiena, 2011. gada 15. novembris

Golden Autumn- photo report

I'm not entirely sure whether it is due to Climate Change or is it just a precious gift from Mother Nature, but this Autumn has been incredibly beautiful, sunny, colourful and delightful.. I could go on and on, but isn't that true that a picture says a thousand words? I just could not resist not to share this beauty on green carpet!

Autumn delights III- apples

Heh, long break on green carpet online, but that just means we have been enjoying more outdoors, family time and indoors creative moments. When it becomes colder, it's so great to sit with a cup of tea while little one is playing on her own and take out all yarns and needles from their "summer sleep". Time to work on some crafts, which will appear later on in photos!
Late autumn is also wonderful for outdoors- clearing the garden, cleaning the courtyard and whole territory from fallen colourful leaves.. And it hasn't been that long since we picked last winter apples for storage.
Here's a little photo report on our apple harvest- 60 boxes for autumn and winter!!! :)

Most of the boxes are still there, waiting to be eaten during the cold months in front of us, but part of them has been already juiced to drink whole winter and until next harvest. Part of them- already baked in cakes, stewed, "jammed" and made in desserts.. But another part of them is dried and there are two types of drying we love:
  • grandma' dried apples are peeled, cut and dried long over the wood oven and they look like this:

  • "fresh" apple crisps are fresh because can be done anytime for eating, they are sliced super thin and dried on batteries: 

Dried apples are very tasty and also healthy snack, and we all know that snacking habit in winter only grows. Besides "fresh"  apple crisps is also a great way to "save" those apples that are harder to store- if you see they're close to spoiling, dry them!
Grandma' dried apples are also wonderful for desserts, but your kinds will love "fresh" apple crisps!