Spring is such a mix, isn't it? The rushing about with excitement for projects and planting and plans, alongside the slow savoring of each sunny day, as we slip off our shoes and step gently in the grass.
The season awakens not only the birdsong and frog calls and spring ephemerals throughout the valley. It also awakens our sleepy winter spirits and our desire to be outside all day in the sunshine.
So we've been finding a fresh, spring-flavored rhythm to our days. We built a new campfire circle down beside the creek and are burning (ever so slowly) some of the wood that washed up along the banks in the last flood. There's so much piled along the banks that we could have a bonfire each day for a month and hardly make a dent! But it's a challenge I'm willing to take. Because no day is finer than one we spend here, lazily chatting by the fire.
Oh, yes. Spring has my heart. And this new rhythm is just what I needed.
A word on ticks: Many of you have asked how we can still be comfortable heading out into the tall grass and underbrush with our Lyme disease history. Lyme is scary. I get it. Lupine, Pete and I have dealt with more than our fair share of Lyme.
But what I wrote about my tick philosophy here still holds true. I can't let the fear win. Not when the woods, when life, when childhood are waiting.
Please note: For the first time ever I added affiliate links below (to the supplements we take each morning). I have gone back and forth about doing this, as I feel it runs the risk of reducing credibility when I share something that I love with you. But the truth is, I've always posted links. It's just that now a small percentage of your purchase (and anything else you buy) goes toward our medical bills. Yay! (Your price is the same either way.) Please let me know how you feel about this. Honestly. I'd love to hear how it sits with you.
On a more practical side, here's what we do these days to prevent ticks (none of these are magical, they're just the combination that we've found that works for us):
~ Even when it's not mosquito season we spray our skin and clothes with Shoo before we head outside. (FYI: this is a product that I make and sell. I create it with Rose Geranium essential oil, added specifically for its tick-repellent properties, plus other helpful EOs for insect repellency). We bring it along and if we're out for more than an hour or two we reapply. I also spray this on my dog when he heads out to romp.
~ We wear light colors when possible and tuck our pants into our socks. Hats are a good choice, too.
~ We throw all of our clothes into the laundry when we get back home, do tick checks for each other, then we each take a quick shower. Things that can't be laundered (hand knits or other wool, for example) are checked for burrs; then they go into the dryer on hot for 10 minutes to kill any ticks before coming back upstairs. (If woolens are wet line dry first, then throw into the dryer.)
~ And since we started this sulphur protocol two years ago we've had almost no tick bites. (Really. We went from five bites for Lupine alone by mid April one year, to a single bite the whole next year. Yes, one bite is still one too many, but it's certainly an improvement.)
The protocol is as follows:
Week 1: Take 1/8 teaspoon of powdered sulphur daily (We stir it into water with a bit of Magnesium Calm instead of the molasses recommended in the link above (for flavor, and because we supplement with magnesium daily anyway). We also add our other daily powdered supplement, collagen gelatin, since it's convenient to do it all in one mug at the same time. The whole mix tastes just fine, even to my super-taster kid.) * The collagen and magnesium have nothing to do with ticks, it's just a convenient - and tasty - way to double up our supplement game in one glass.
Week 2: Take above dose every other day.
Week 3: above dose every third day.
Week 4: Take above dose once per week.
Week 5 through Autumn: Take above dose monthly.
I don't know why it works, but it seems to work well for us, so I'm keeping with it. Even if it is some woo-woo folk remedy. As long as it works!