Thursday, September 01, 2016

Home Remedies for Skin Rashes

Having been plagued with allergic skin rashes for over a year now, I can safely say that I have tried just about every home remedy known to man, including the ones listed in the linked article below.

All of them work in varying degrees. Since my skin rashes are due to allergies, I have not found anything that gets rid of it totally, although it does start to heal, and then it comes back.

I have created my own treatments using essential oils which help with the itching. My potions also help repel mosquitoes. You can read about them here. 

The MUSC (Medical Univ. of S.C.) dermatologist wants to do the allergen skin test, but that is an expensive test, as many of you know. Meanwhile, I continue to look for new home remedies.

Obviously, one needs to be careful of soaps, detergents, and household cleaners. Any chemical you come into contact with can create a reaction. Outdoor allergens are also to blame.

Many may find it strange, but the zinc in diaper rash cream helps immensely, especially if you have a raw area. When I was in the hospital, they used a zinc paste dressing on my worst areas. However, diaper rash creams will suffice in most cases. Compare the creams and choose one with the highest amount of zinc.

Diaper rash cream: you might laugh away at this absurd suggestion but if it can treat a rash on a baby's sensitive skin, it can take care of yours. Extremely mild and extremely helpful. Apply 2-3 times a day.

Home Remedies To Treat Skin Rashes | Life Hacker India

Thursday, August 18, 2016

Homemade Mosquito Repellent

The Zika virus carried by mosquitoes has become a hot topic and is the basis for many unwarranted fears for most people in the United States. While it is a dangerous virus that can be sexually transmitted (one reported in S.C.), here in the US, it only affects about 1000 people per year.

As of August 18, 2016, there are 34 known cases of Zika virus in South Carolina.

* So far president Obama has asked congress for $1.9 billion to help develop a Zika vaccine.

* The White House also is seeking flexibility to use some of its unspent funding for the Ebola crisis to respond to Zika or other infectious diseases. 

You can also learn more about the Zika virus from the Centers for Disease Control at

Each state should also provide information. The link for South Carolina is, which provides useful information on symptoms, transmission and prevention.

Homemade Mosquito Repellent

Regardless of the present threat, it's definitely a great time to reconsider what type of mosquito repellent you have on hand for your family, especially if you live in an area that us inundated with mosquitoes. *The methods I use involve essential oils, many of which are not recommended for pregnant women, so check with your doctor first.

Homemade mosquito repellents can be made with essential oils and water. Just remember to shake well before each use. Best results are from distilled water or purified water as opposed to regular tap water. Distilled water is quite cheap and is available in most grocery stores.

You can also make it yourself by following the directions at

What do you need to make homemade mosquito repellents?

You need one or more essential oils and a dropper which comes with most bottles.
You will need distilled water or another base / carrier oil for your recipe.
You will need a roll-on bottle, spray bottle or small container:

  • You can use roll-on bottles that are typically used for perfumes (see link below).
  • You can use a standard spray bottle.
  • You can use any small container with a lid if you are using aloe vera gel as your base.

How much water do you need?

If you only need light coverage, you can use up to 3 cups of water which can be spritzed onto clothing more easily.

If you need a more potent repellent, try using 1 or 2 cups of water as your base.

If you are using a small roll-on bottle, obviously you will simply finish filling the bottle after inserting the appropriate oils.

Do you have to use water?

You do not have to use water; it's a matter of preference. You can also use witch hazel, aloe vera gel for an ointment, fractionated coconut oil, or any combination of these. You can also use moisturizing carrier oils such as jojoba oil.

Personally, I make up small insect repellent recipes using small roll-on perfume bottles which I order from Amazon. I combine 10 drops of two or three of my chosen oils with fractionated coconut oil or witch hazel (with alcohol). You can also add a little vodka if you are not using witch hazel with alcohol.

The following oils are oils I use and purchase through Amazon. These links are my Amazon Associate links.

The oils I use in my insect repellent recipes include:
  1. Eucalyptus oil - NOW Foods Eucalyptus Oil, 4 ounce
  2. Geranium oilRose Geranium 100% Pure Therapeutic Grade Essential Oil -15ml
  3. Tea tree oil Tea Tree Oil (Australian) 4 oz. Glass Dropper By First Botany Cosmeceuticals.
  4. Lavender oilLavender Oil - Highest Quality Therapeutic - Largest 4 Oz Bottle with Premium Glass Dropper - Guaranteed Results - Essential Labs
  5. Order the 3-Pack (all but Geranium) to get started quickly!
Get three favorite essential oils (by NOW Foods) for one low price at Amazon:

3-Pack Variety of NOW Essential Oils: Tea Tree, Eucalyptus, Lavender

Recently, I found the following recipe for making a larger amount of mosquito repellent. This recipe is more diluted.

In a quart sized spray bottle, combine 1 to 3 cups of water or carrier of your choice, with one of the following:
  • 30 drops tea tree oil
  • 30 drops lemongrass oil
  • 30 drops rosemary oil
  • 30 drops eucalyptus oil

Resources: also offers some homemade insect repellent recipes using such things as garlic and ammonia. provides natural methods of repelling insects, including the use of essential oils.

6 New, High Quality, Amber, 10 ml Glass Roll-on Bottles with Stainless Steel Roller Balls - .5 ml Dropper included

 One of the reasons I prefer the small roller bottles is because I can carry it in my purse. Another benefit is that this concentration seems to work on itching as well as repelling. 


  • The methods I use involve essential oils, many of which are not recommended for pregnant women, so check with your doctor first. 
  • Cats are known to be very sensitive to Tea Tree Oil, and possibly others. 
  • Some people are sensitive to essential oils when applied directly to the skin. This is why a proper carrier oil or water solution is used. If in doubt, spot check before applying to your skin. The essential oils are healing, but they must be used according to directions. 
  • The recipes above should be fine on most people, but spray onto clothing if you have sensitive skin.
  • Some of the essential oils are quite fragrant, and many people do not like the smell. For instance, I love the eucalyptus but my daughter hates it, so I do not use it when she is at home. 

Sunday, July 17, 2016

How the Rich and Famous are Voting

This election year has been one of the most interesting, and most controversial election years of my life. The politicians and their supporters are confused, angry, and sometimes downright ignorant. The lies and accusations are tossed around easier than a salad.

This political circus has served to inspire many questions for me, not all of which serve a great purpose - such as this one.

Then again, it wasn't that long ago that a movie star was elected president.

  • How are the rich and famous voting?
I found endless resources for celebrity supporters of Hillary, but those supporting Trump are apparently not as vocal about their choice.

I'm With Her (Hillary Clinton)

Music Industry

Katy Perry
Elton John
Pit Bull - In no uncertain terms, it is safe to say that Pit Bull mocks the Trump candidacy. Interview at Reuters.

Television Stars and Industry

Amy Schumer
Ellen DeGeneres
Eva Longoria
Jim Parsons (Big Bang Theory)
Kerry Washington (Scandal)
Olivia Wilde (formerly of House)
Shonda Rhimes (Creator of some of my favorite shows: How to Get Away With Murder, Grey's Anatomy)

Movie Stars / Directors / Industry

Steven Spielberg
J.J. Abrams (Director of The Force Awakens)
Ben Affleck
Robert De Niro
George Clooney
Julianne Moore
Jamie Foxx
Kate Hudson
Charlize Theron
Drew Barrymore
Leonardo DiCaprio
Morgan Freeman
Reese Witherspoon
Scarlett Johansson
Samuel L. Jackson
Spike Lee
Tom Hanks

Donald Trump supporters

Aaron Carter
Kirstie Allie
Willie Robertson (Duck Dynasty)
Dennis Rodman
Kid Rock
Mike Tyson
Gary Busey
Loretta Lynn
Wayne Newton
Scott Baio - "When he speaks I understand him."

I assume that Clint Eastwood, Chuck Norris and Tom Selleck are Trump supporters, since I know they are staunch Republicans, but I am not sure so I did not include them.


Friday, July 15, 2016

I Began My Voting Life as a Republican

Are you a Democrat? An Independent? A Republican?

Have you ever changed your party affiliation?

More often than not, people become affiliated with a political party based on their heritage (in my experience).

It's a family tradition.

Even suggesting that someone vote differently than their parents can start an argument.

(Now I was born and raised in the south, so this might be a southern thing, but I fear that this is a tradition throughout rural America.)

Naturally, some people do change their party affiliation. Sometimes, they do so quietly, without telling a soul, except for the ones they are trying to please or impress. For instance, a change might be made due to outside influences such as an employer, a church, or a new spouse.

Those that grew up in a two-party household feel free to explore all of their options. I was one of those lucky ones.

I began my voting life as a Republican, then became an Independent, and eventually realized that the only way I could remain true to my moral and ethical convictions was by finally jumping in with both feet and registering as a Democrat.

Life would be much easier for me today if I had kept that information to myself, but I have always felt strongly about speaking up for those who cannot speak for themselves, or for those whose voices are being ignored. Therefore, I deal with the angry friends and family. I do have a few family members who see things as I do, and they are a great comfort to me, even the ones who keep it a secret. I get it. I understand.

Changing your political party affiliation can be difficult, especially when family members see it as betrayal. While I do not understand how they rationalize this betrayal, I do understand the power of the feeling, because that's exactly how I feel about voting for Republicans. It betrays every fiber of my being.

It betrays our citizens, especially females and the LGBT community (and those who love them), our minorities, our disabled, and our poverty stricken brothers and sisters. I cannot live by the Golden Rule if I choose to ignore these people, or worse, vote against them.

Now I don't feel this strongly about every election or every Republican, but I do feel that way about the Republican platform of 2016 and the candidates running on that platform.

My observation of this situation is not intended to insult people who feel differently. I'm simply stating the experiences I have had as to when, why, and how people change their political party affiliation.

My intention is to help those who are struggling with their decisions and who are hesitant to make changes because they are afraid of the fallout.

One thing has become abundantly clear based on government data; predominantly Republican states tend to have the highest number of people living in poverty, and are therefore accessing social aids such as food stamps and Medicaid. Yet, they continue to vote for the party that threatens to take all of that away from them.


My second theory on this phenomenon was that perhaps people still think that they will be millionaires one day, so they want to preserve the "I'm better than you" rights of the uber wealthy - for when they "arrive."

However, I just read an article by a former military man, who gives an excellent explanation of what was going through his mind when he was poor, yet voting Republican.

Here are two of his reasons...

To make up for my own failures, I voted to give rich people tax cuts, because somewhere deep inside, I knew they were better than me. They earned it. My support for conservative politics was atonement for the original sin of being white trash.
I didn’t care about tax cuts for myself. I was still paying little if any income tax, but I believed in “fairness.” The “death tax” (aka the estate tax) was unfair and rich people paid more taxes so they should get more of a tax break. I ignored my own personal struggles when I made political decisions.
As you can see, his reasons included shame and self deprecation.

How sad.

Read the rest of his story at