Atchoo… 7 things you can do to ease the blow ( pun intended ).

Oh no, we have only been back at school a few weeks and already a cold has arrived!

My littlest has been suffering with a bad cough and cold, and I can feel the scratchy feeling in my throat too!! Here are a few tips I follow when coughs and colds strike.

 

  1. Rest and stay warm

The body is working harder than usual to fight off the cold virus, by resting you will allow the body to do this quicker. The body also uses energy to keep itself warm so give it a hand and stay warm.

  1. Drink… A lot…

No I don’t mean alcohol. Water is great for keeping you hydrated, but other drinks are good too. Warm herbal or fruit teas and good old honey and lemon will soothe the throat and ease congestion. You might not feel in the mood for a Smoothie or fruit juice, but they will provide some vitamins. I find its best to dilute fruit juice with a little water if your throat is particularly sore. Here are some links to drinks I like; Innocent Blackberry SmoothieTea Palace ‘Harmony’Twinings Salted Caramel Green TeaTwinings Spicy Chai.

  1. Eat

I know it’s hard to eat when you don’t feel like eating, but giving your body the energy it needs to fight off an infection will help you get better sooner. Make sure you get plenty of fruit and vegetables too. Garlic is also thought to help prevent colds by stimulating the immune system. It is also a natural antibacterial. Many other home remedies are thought to help so it’s worth having a research.

4.Gargle salt

This is one of the best things to do, every time I feel that slight scratchy feeling in my throat I gargle with salt. I usually do this before the sore throat has chance to take hold, however you can do this even if it already has. Salt has a drying effect and will sooth the throat by making it difficult for germs to reproduce.

  1. Saline spray

My mum swears by these. If she thinks she is getting a cold it’s the first thing she does. Similar to gargling salt you can buy a saline spray  to spray up your nose. Check out the link here Boots Saline Nasal Spray

  1. Mentholated salves

You can make these yourself from eucalyptus oil and Vaseline/carrier oil if you are savvy enough. Or you buy them just as easily. Here is one made from all natural ingredients Maty’s All Natural Baby Chest Rub

  1. Extra pillow

Plumping up your pillow or investing in a well supported pillow always helps a good night sleep. Raising your head slightly will stop mucus from sliding backwards down your throat… yuck!  This will also help you breathe easier. Check out this awesome pillow Airflow Breatheasy Pillow

photo-4By The Mindful Mum

Looking Good and Feeling Gorgeous, One for the Ladies…

My order just arrived!! Thanks holland and barratt!! Woohoo, Its like being a child again when parcel filled goodies is delivered to your door. My latest in health and beauty care, check these out, The Dr Organic Vitamin E Skin Lotion and wait for it…..a delicious lip balm that smells good enough to eat, it’s also on offer at the moment for only £1.49, the Dr Organic Cherry Aloe Lip Balm. What a bargain!

To make it even better the buy one get one half price sale is on! I personally love this range of beauty products, the creams have a mild fragrance nothing too strong, they are not greasy and they don’t contain anywhere near as many chemical nasties as other high street brands.

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By The Mindful Mum

15 Easy ways to cut food costs and waste.

Food is one of the biggest expenses we have as a family. Food is also a necessary, therefore trying to manage this cost effectively whilst wasting less is very important. Just the other day I was reading an article that said that people in Britain throw away 7 million tonnes of food and drink every year from their homes, and most of this could have been used.

Here are 15 of my top tips for keeping costs down and wasting less.

 

1. Shop at supermarkets

We all tend to use the supermarket for buying our food mainly out of convenience however, we can often find better deals from independent sellers. Markets are often cheaper for fruit and veg than big stores, especially at the end of the day when they will be trying to get rid of leftover produce. Butchers may have weekly deals or may throw in a few extras so it’s well worth hunting around.

2. Buy Fresh

Buying fresh uncooked meat for sandwiches and cooking it yourself at home is also a great way to save. This is substantially cheaper than prepackaged cooked meats and healthier as it does not contain preservatives or sugar.

 

3. Buy Bulk

If you have the room, buying bulk buy or larger bags of grain, rice and pasta is a great idea. They last a long time if stored correctly, and will save you a lot of money in the long run.

 

4. Reduced Goods

Reduced section food goods can be great if you know you will use them the same day.

 

5. Bulking and Batch Cooking

Bulking out bolognaise or chilli con carne with lentils is something I do a lot, they are cheap to buy and full of protein, this will make more and make the meat go further. This will also save you cooking time. In fact, making big batches of most food dishes and freezing them in portioned pots/containers will help save time and money.

 

6. Get Saucy

Meat can be pricey so making dishes in homemade sauces will also make meat go further, adding lots of vegetables will also boost nutrition.

 

7. Put down the ready meals!

Don’t be tempted to buy ready meals, they cost more than fresh meals and although they may save you a little time you will be getting less food. A stirfry can be put together very quickly and will be better for you, for days when you have less time.

 

8. Be creative

For fruit that has seen better days, you can blend it in a smoothie, stew it and freeze it and use as a topper for porridge, in crumbles, pies or cakes.

 

9. Make your own

Some things like are cheaper to make yourself for example; Don’t be drawn in to buying expensive infused oils, buy the plain oil of your choice and add the flavour with spices or garlic etc. Try not to cook with olive oil, olive oil is more expensive than other oils, the taste will also be lost in the cooking process so it’s best saved for salads.

 

10. Make a List

Before you go shopping make a list, otherwise you may buy things you don’t need and forget things you do. This is a big must.

 

11. Be the coupon lady (or man)

Use those coupons, 20p may not seem a lot, but it all adds up over time.

There are hundreds of online voucher code websites brimming with reduced offers and buy one get one frees! Check out Sainsbury’s voucher codes for example.

 

12. Avoid being misled

Look above and below eye level when shopping in the supermarket. You will notice that expensive things are put at an average eye level..

 

13. Don’t go shopping when you are hungry

Try not to go shopping when hungry psychologically it makes people tend to want to buy more and pick up more treat items. Shopping without children in tow will make it cheaper as you won’t be tempted to buy things they ask for.

 

14. Freeze it

If you can’t finish a loaf of bread, freeze the rest and take out as and when you need it. This can be done with multiple foods so check the label.

 

15. Longer lasting foods

Lastly, look for things that will last a bit longer, if long life milk isn’t your cup of tea (excuse the pun) there are many food items that have a slightly longer shelf life without being too over loaded with preservatives, for example, longer lasting vegetables. Buying a head of lettuce will last longer than bagged lettuce. If you can’t cope without bagged mixed leaves but find they wilt too quickly try putting them in soups, smoothies, curries or even whizz them up with some oil and garlic and nuts for a homemade pesto.

By The Mindful Mum