Thursday, June 20, 2013

Dandelion Fun and Natural Tick & Insect Repellant Recipe

It has been a really fun week around here! It is finally getting warm enough out to call this season spring… Just in time for summer to officially begin next week! ;-) We've been spending lots of quality time outdoors, working in our garden and playing.



The dandelions are loving this weather too and have gone from cheerful yellow petals to seed rather quickly with the warm up. We hope to find time soon try some of these great recipes from Mother Earth Living!



We are very glad that the weather has decided to catch up with the seasons, because our busy schedule of summer activities has begun. Evan is finishing up 2 week tennis clinic and really enjoying it. Zoie has started her summer-long soccer twice a week, to which she has really been looking forward.


At home they participate in a wide range of outdoor play. Favorites for Evan include gardening, swimming, riding his scooter and imaginative play. 


Zoie loves riding her bicycle, kicking the soccer ball, playing in the sandbox and being pulled in the wagon. 



Izze also loves riding her tricycle, being pulled in the wagon, digging in the dirt and drawing with sidewalk chalk. What are some of yours and your kiddos favorite outdoor summer activities?


Playing outside in the spring does have one downfall for our family - lots of ticks! Ticks are most active in the spring because the nymphs are out feeding once the weather begins to warm up. Here in Minnesota, ticks do not seem to like very hot or dry weather and mostly disappear in the heat of the summer, reappearing during cool, rainy spells. We have only found Wood or Dog ticks here, which are not known to carry diseases. Deer or Black legged ticks are the known carries or Lyme Disease and several other pathogens, and are unfortunately much smaller than wood ticks. 

So what do we do about these unwanted ticks? We do not spray for insects or any other pests, and we view them as unsafe and extremely detrimental to the environment. Instead we use deterrent practices and one of the recipes I detail below. Read on to find out the details….



NATURAL TICK AND INSECT REPELLANT RECIPES
1.) Shake well before use
2.) Use liberally on exposed skin 
3.) For ticks focus on the neck, ears, hairline, under arms and groin as places they like to attach, as well as legs, waist and back as access points to skin.
4.) Wearing long pants, especially tucked into your socks, is a very effective combined effort to keep ticks at bay and be sure to check for ticks after being in woods or tall grass!
5.) For mosquitos focus on exposed areas of skin and hair.
6.) Avoid getting these repellants directly in eyes or mouths, rinse thoroughly if these areas are exposed and contact a physician for further instructions if irritation persists.
7.) These recipes have been effective for us but are not guaranteed! ;-)


Rub-On Oil Based Version (My preference for ticks)

In a bottle with squirty top combine the following ingredients well:
- 8 Tbsp Almond, Jojoba or Olive Oil
- 4 Tbsp REAL Aloe Vera Gel (like this one)
- 40-60 drops of Essential Oils of choice

We use the following oils:
20 drops Rose Geranium EO 
15 drops Tea Tree EO
10 drops Lavender EO
5 drops Lemon Rosemary Lemongrass Blend EO
5 drops Citronella EO
 5 drops Grapefruit EO




Spray-On Witch Hazel Based Version (My preference for mosquitos)

In a bottle with spray top combine the following ingredients well:
- 4 oz. Water
- 4 oz. Pure Witch Hazel
- 1/2 tsp Vegetable Glycerin
- 40-60 drops of Essential Oils of choice 

We use the following oils:
20 drops Tea Tree EO
10 drops Lavender EO
10 drops Citronella EO
10 drops Lemon Rosemary Lemongrass Blend EO
 5 drops Grapefruit EO
5 drop Cedar EO


That's it!! Simple, easy, and effective ways to reduce your family's exposure to insects and arachnids this summer! Ticks are arachnids - Did you know that? See now you learned something else too!! :-) Wondering where to purchase or learn more about Essential Oils? We buy our oils both locally at our co-op or online. Mountain Rose Herbs has an extensive collection of high quality Essential Oils. You can learn more about Essential Oils and Herbalism on the Mountain Rose Herbs Blog as well! Another good choice for high quality Essential Oils and information about their uses and properties is Aura Cacia.



Thank you so much for stopping by! I'd love to hear your thoughts or questions! Have a favorite method for insect protection? Please share!! Hope to see you back soon! :-)

GreenFoxFarms.etsy.com






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