Everyday Practice

There are things we can do to remedy the harm done, and being done, to the place we live (Earth) and the beings who live here (all of us!). Simple, though not easy, the remedies we have learned by living a Safety Pin Cafe (smaller, gentle, efficient, portable, magic) life we share here.

Smell like a human being

Many years ago I read something by a then unknown medical doctor who was radically changing the way physicians were trained. She was a storyteller, so of course, she had my attention. I read the story of a man who was back from war. Reunited with his family, his young daughter in particular, the homecoming was less than joyous. That was unfortunate, but often the case. What struck me, and the storyteller must poignantly was the little girl sniffed, smelled the man but could not smell her daddy. Smell is the first and longest remembered sense we have as humans. When we cover over selves, or absorb 'other' we cannot be who were were as human. The storyteller and medical doctor telling the story I read years ago is Rachel Naomi Remens.

Fragrance is this century's SECOND-HAND SMOKE. 

Here is an article to make the case against fragrances, scented product and cover-ups to make us smell other than human. It's not an easy read, and rather long. But, if you've the time to be informed, and ready to make some significantly awesome changes go there.

THIS IS A RECENT ADDITION (1/15/16) to the page "Everyday Practice", regarding fragrance or scent. It's an article written on the site Everyday Feminism; an article I have just discovered because I have expanded my radar (goes to show you, at 68 it's still possible!) and begun to read the SLOG. Anyway before I blather you silly. Here is the very well written article "Get Mad When Folks Ask you to be Scent-free? Here are 8 things to consider" by Adrian Ballou. 

Pitch the product, pocket your dollar.

It's good magic to use simple remedies for cleaning your stuff, and yourself. We keep it pretty simple in our safety pin cafe kind of life. These are the things we use in our everyday life. We read labels and if we can't pronounce it, it's probably not some thing we want on our skin, on our clothes, in our bodies, or in the water, air or Earth. These things work for us. We've experimented and learned through trial and error what does work for us. Your mileage will vary, as my astrologer likes to say:) But in the end, it's all about kuleana, the beautiful word from my Hawaiian culture, that says "It's our responsibility to care for the 'aina ... the land, water, air and bodies that sustain. Know your 'products' as if it were your lover ... who you take to bed at night that's the one who keeps you warm to the bone.

The Basic Cleaners

Baking Soda
Vinegars (White Distilled and Apple Cider)
Milk (powered, dry milk or buttermilk)
Mother Nature: wind, sun, snow, rain, time

What we clean

Although it's a time-consuming process, when we shop thrift or second-hand stores for our throw rugs, fabric and (sometimes) clothes we have to DEFRAG them. Former washing products including detergents and fabric softeners will take weeks, and often months to be ok by us.

Our basic ritual is this:
Air it, soak it, wash it, repeat. Our fences are our clothes lines, and the seasons of any given year are the Mother Nature touch that makes the ritual season specific. In the summer when there's heat and sun we call on Ka La and thank him. In the winter when it rains we thank 'Ua ka lani for the neutralizing touch. We don't own a washer or drier so in the winter to dry things we depend on our electric heater to do that work.

The folks here have written extensively about the air-soak-wash-repeat ritual we go through, to a greater or lesser degree, depending upon the second-hand treasure's original level of fragrances. Check it out here.

Products we buy*

Unscented Coconut Soap (Tropical Traditions Liquid Unscented)
Unscented Dish Liquid (Tropical Traditions Dish Liquid)
Unscented Liquid Laundry Detergent ( ECOS 'Free & Clear)
Air and odor eliminator (PURE ayre Odor Eliminator)

* The tricky part about being a consumer, and buying product made by unknown entities, is the entity could, and does, change the recipe and ingredients of their product. Do be your own best sleuth, and read the labels. 

Do your own research

EWG (Environmental Working Group) is one of the big consumer watch dog groups. I have used their website to do a lot of research on products. Do your own research and make your choices with information. Products change. When you buy something and think it's great for you, and the environment, the ingredients change ... OMG!

From time to time we may add things to our menu, and if you have questions, or use things that might work for a Safety Pin Cafe life, leave us a comment. We'd love to know about your daily remedies.

Take 12 Action Steps After an EI (Environmental Illness) Diagnosis

Julie Genser, EarthWalker to the community she has created on the on-line space Planet Thrive has been an inspiration and vital activist walking her talk: "to connect, inform, and support people globally who are struggling to reverse the damaging health effects of an increasingly toxic world", and survive and thrive with chronic illness. I met this amazing woman when I was first diagnosed with MCS. Her continuing, and evolving efforts to inform and support a diverse and holistic journey of healing is a bright spot on the Earth. A free on-line guide to open yourself to caring practices and actions created in 2011 can be accessed by linking here.

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