If you're anything like me, you know that when you really need something, it's nowhere to be found in your home.
I'm constantly asking the neighbors for a cup of sugar or running to the store in the middle of baking a new recipe because I don't have the ingredients in my cupboards that I thought I did.
Same goes for first-aid supplies.
You would think I'd be prepared with Bactine and Band-Aids for little things such as bee stings and scraped knees.
You would think.
Beause I never do have those things when I need them, I've become a big believer in home remedies.
Call them natural, holistic, homemade, or just weird -- no matter what you call them, they work. I cannot tell you how many times I've gotten fantastic ideas for remedies from other moms who use things found in the kitchen pantry to cure common ailments.
So, just in case your first-aid kit comes up short this summer, I've compiled a list of the best at-home treatments I've been fortunate enough to encounter. This will allow you to alleviate most summer afflictions that may come your way . . . even if it's just until you can get to the pharmacy!
Being stuck in Pittsburgh all winter is certain to leave you and your children with pale complexions. Forget one application of SPF 50, and the delicate skin of your little one just might turn bright red.
This happened to my daughter Kailee around this time last year.
Excited about being outdoors for the first time in months, I took Kailee to a friend's house and watched as she ran, jumped, and played all afternoon. When it came time to take her inside, I noticed her pale skin wasn’t just pink from being active all afternoon -- it was burnt red.
Kailee immediately began to fuss over the pain. Neither my friend nor I had any aloe to sooth her skin. As her fussiness grew, I began to think it was time to go home. That’s when my friend's mother walked in the room and suggested I put a little Listerine on a cotton ball and rub it on the burn until I could get to the store.
I tried it and, as crazy as it sounds, it worked right away. Not only did Kailee smell minty fresh, her attitude lightened up and I was able to enjoy the rest of my evening.
A common summertime problem many people suffer from is sweaty, stinky feet -- which can be embarrassing for parent and child.
This is a problem passed down to all the children in my family and, come summer, the shoes in my house aren’t exactly smelling like roses. When I laughed and confided in a co-worker about my baby’s stinky feet, the colleague suggested I put a coat of deodorant on the bottom of her little feet.
Yep, it worked. There was no more odor pouring out from the soles of her shoes. Now I don’t have to worry if my child takes off her smelly shoes off at daycare. I would hate for her to be known as "Stinky-Foot Kailee.”
I hate bees. I still scream and run any time one of them gets near me. I'm not exactly an “0utdoor girl." Luckily I have never been stung.
That’s why I wasn’t prepared when my stepdaughter was.
When she ran into the house with a nasty sting, I had no idea how to treat it. As tears were welling up in my stepdaughter's eyes, I called my own mommy to figure out what to do.
Her recommendation: Vicks Vapor Rub.
“Huh?” was my reply.
She promised Vicks Vapor Rub would take away the pain. I dabbed a small amount of the salve on the sting area and, the next thing I knew, my stepdaughter was outside playing again.
I'm lucky that my children don’t get motion sickness. Unfortunately for my husband, his wife does.
I absolutely hate to be the passenger in a car. I can't read a book, look at my phone, or turn around to talk to the kids in the backseat without becoming nauseous. If I drive, my husband becomes queasy, no matter what he does.
To keep everyone’s lunches down, I've learned to live with letting my husband drive.
I still have a problem with motion sickness unless I stare straight ahead. After I begrudgingly took the passenger seat last year on a trip to Washington D.C., I discovered a little remedy of my own.
When I became utterly bored with staring, I began to read my iPhone, forgetting what would inevitably happen. After scrolling through a long email, I began to feel my stomach turn. I knew I needed a cracker to put my stomach at ease, but there was no reststop in sight. I put down the phone and desperately tried to talk my stomach out of being upset.
When that didn’t work, I reached for my gum.
Chewing on the peppermint gum instantly quashed the sick sensation in my stomach. Relieved, I began to stare out my window again.
With 20 miles between me and a restroom, I wasn’t taking any chances.