Monday, 27 January 2014

a different kind of remedy

(Not the post I'd planned for tonight, but it seems this is the one that wants to be written!)

We had the fire banked up in our stove tonight, warm coal beating back the wind and rain. Our two older kids were in the kitchen but I sat near the flames with Thea curled in my lap, her eyes limp and heavy. She's been like this for the past three days, coughing, spluttering, temperature spiking and wanting nothing but me.

As I leaned in close, hubby and I both caught a whiff of something strange - like burning plastic - in the fire. The flames roared suddenly upwards, perhaps sucked up by a gust outside, and a wave of heat burst out through the cast-iron doors. Charles looked at me and we both had the same thought - was the house on fire? I found myself planning, quickly - we'd grab the kids and run out into the wet dark. No time to save anything, not with a sick baby to care for. As for clothes, papers, somewhere to stay if the house was gone - we'd figure that out when we got there. Once the lives under this roof were spared, nothing else mattered.

picnic by the fire - a favorite winter pastime for our kids!

I watched a house burn down several months ago. We were passing by just after it caught alight and stopped to offer any help we could, shocked at how quickly the flames licked through the roof and bit great chunks out of the walls.

But as Charles went out to check the chimney tonight, the flames died down. I could still smell something acrid and foreign but the adrenaline died down too. Relief. Back to cuddling my baby.

It's unlike Thea to stay still in my arms for so long. Usually a hug lasts for a few seconds before she's up on her feet, emptying pot drawers and leaving a trail of destruction. It's only when she's really sick like this that I get uninterrupted affection.

I found myself thinking, then. Perhaps it's only when I'm really soul-sick and tired of trying to fix everything myself that I stop running. There's a time to search and grow and work towards healing, but I think there's also a time to rest and be still, and trust that God will take care of it all.


We held off taking Thea to the doctor this time. She's too miserable to be out in the cold, and she's already had two runs of antibiotics since Christmas. Instead I'm trying a home remedy I found on the internet - a natural vapor rub made in just ten minutes using coconut, peppermint and rosemary oils. She's upstairs in bed now, fast asleep and smelling like a herb garden. Hopefully this will do the trick ... but I'm kinda hoping I'll get cuddles for at least one more day!

Rosemary & Peppermint Vapor Rub

- 1/4 cup pure coconut or olive oil
- 1 level tablespoon of beeswax
- 10 drops of eucalyptus or olbas oil
- 10 drops of peppermint oil
- 5 drops of rosemary oil

- melt beeswax and oil in a double boiler until just melted
- add the essential oils
- stir until well mixed and pour into a small container with a lid
- leave to set for 30 minutes
- use as needed to help sooth coughs and congestion.

Note - You'll find all the ingredients at a health shop. Pricey to buy everything but even this small amount will keep you going for a loooong time!


  1. open (and anonymous) comments now enabled - you no longer need a gmail account!

  2. could you eat this remedy, like could we use it at FFT? :-)

  3. weelll ... I guess it's a bit like the chilli, it might not kill you but not recommended, lol!!