Friday, October 31, 2014

Poll: Videos On What?

I've had requests for videos for a while and I do have some time coming up when we will be on Christmas break in December and I want to get a list of what videos you are most interested in.  I have more subscribers to my YouTube video channel than I do email subscribers to this blog, so I'm thinking that the videos I have up already are interesting, so those are included in the poll - add any more to this post in the comments, thanks!!

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Motherhood is Dying to Self

Not many things in life involve more of dying to yourself than motherhood.  Sure, there are mothers that will not die to their self and therefore it doesn't mean that just because you are a mother, you are a selfless person.  Sadly, in America, we are full of mothers who are quite the opposite!  We have mothers that want to please themselves or others more than be what God made them to be - a mother.  They won't let anything get in the way of their ambitions and they sure won't die to self in order to take care of their family.

I was reading a devotion from a book about homeschooling by Anita Mellott and noticed a quote from her friend:

Homeschooling is constantly dying to self.

I can testify that this is very true!  Not only is motherhood demanding but teaching your children is complete sacrifice and death to your self.  That is one reason why a lot of women won't do it.  They are glorified on the altar of recognition for all they do outside the home and that is just too valuable to their ego to lose out on that for a no-praise, no-glory life whose rewards are delayed.  However, their children are way more important than any fleshly praise from others - we are talking about souls, the most important souls in your life! 

I can tell you that my life is my husband and children.  I'm their servant and I realized that a long time ago.  I can't serve myself and busy myself with other things without neglecting them.  You have to look at the end - when you are old, alone and in your rocking chair.  What will you regret?  I won't regret that my house wasn't cleaner.  I won't regret that I didn't do more in my community.  I will regret if I didn't train my children right or if they went astray because of me.  I will regret if I didn't be the wife my husband deserves but was filled with my own agenda.  I will regret if my life was all about me.  I won't regret the moments I had my children with me and all the time we had together.  I won't regret teaching them God's Word and everything else they know.  I won't regret being the wife to my husband and providing his meals and doing my best to be frugal with the household.  I won't regret that I died to self and gave myself to my family!

Though I've been sick and extremely tired lately in this pregnancy, I know that I must find it within myself to still school my daughter and play with my son and meet their daily needs and my husband's.  If we never die to our self, we will never find the fulfillment that God gives to mothers who serve.  We are servants!  There is no greater calling as we have the ability to raise men and women for God and saturate them in God's Word day in and day out.  Truly serving one another begins at home and for those with many children, it will only be at home until they reach a new season of their life where they can serve others.

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Not Sure How Long This Will Last.......

I hope to blog more but I got hit with the morning sickness pretty bad and then fatigue like I've never had this past week!  It is really whooping me and I'm striving to keep up with the house and school (priorities) and obviously, this blog wasn't on the list this week.

I do need to desperately make a meal plan and need to try my best to stick to our budget of $250 or less for the next 4 weeks.  I'm stocked up pretty good on the basics in my pantry but seeing how I'm craving more meat lately, that may raise our budget up a bit.  I also need a lot of convenience things as with all the fatigue and nausea, I'm not able to cook and bake like I thought I would be.

My goal is to put together a meal plan and share it on here as several voted in the poll that is something they would like to see more posts on.  I suppose if you don't see a post in the next few days, you will know I'm in bed LOL!!

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Friday, October 24, 2014

Pregnancy Belly - Early!

There are 3 possibilities of why I started to show BEFORE I even took a pregnancy test:

  1. Farther along than we thought
  2. Twins or more
  3. Just because it is my 3rd pregnancy and my body knows what to do and is doing it FAST!

I get an ultrasound within 2 weeks to find out, I do think I have twins but I'm trying to not get all worked up about it until I know for sure.  But check out my belly!  It is like a little ball in there and I'm already in pregnancy clothes and just finishing my 5th week.

I had finally achieved my "flat" stomach 3 weeks ago and was so excited that my weight was going down.  Then, a few days after noticing my amazing tummy - I got a bump coming out under my breastbone and I was like what is this!?  Well, I found out a week later, it was pregnancy!  Amazing how fast this is going - feels good to wear pregnancy clothes again though, they are so comfy!

Oh and I will be able to do a VBAC after 2 c-sections this pregnancy!!!!!!!!!!!  So I have a LOT to read about and learn how to have a baby the "normal" way because I have no idea!

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Monday, October 20, 2014

Why I'm a Not-for-Profit Blogger/Writer

First of all, no I don't make any money off this blog nor do I intend to but I have had a lot of people volunteer ways I could.  It is as though people think since you have a blog, that you must be trying to make money off it.  Well, news flash!  I actually love writing and have since I was a child but back then I wrote in paper journals and no one ever read them (though I'm pretty sure my mom and sisters sneaked a peek at one time or another).  I wrote my first book, a children's book, in 8th grade for a class assignment.  I even illustrated it but it wasn't the illustrations that helped my book win LOL - I'm SO not an artist, you don't want to see my drawings!! I remember my 8th grade English teacher telling me I had a gift, though I didn't really know what to do with it at that time.

Since high school, I continued to write in journals and when the internet became common, I got an online journal.  That became popular and I was featured on AOL's front page one day and the response was intimidating to say the least.  I was writing about my passion back then, which was fitness, and I got a lot of questions and offers, some of which I did do - a magazine article that featured me and then I was a poster girl for a women's body-building nutrition program (NO I DID NOT SHOW MY BODY in a bathing suit - I stayed modest even in that arena in a skirt!).

After the fitness craze hit its peak and I realized I had even put it before God and was obsessed with it, I let go of that passion.  However, writing never left me, it is and probably always will be a love of mine and part of who I am.  It is like an appendage really, I feel like I can communicate my very soul in writing sometimes and articulate my points way better than I can in person.  My next venture was a homekeeping blog, which had a different name in the beginning but a few years later as it started growing, I became Christian Homekeeping.

I had this blog up before with a large readership but I also had a lot of issues happen in my personal life and with bullies on this blog, so I took it down thinking I would never pick it back up again.  However, for the 6 months I closed my blog down, I was depressed without writing. Sure, I could write but I wanted to write and have people READ what I wrote and enjoy it!  So, after a time of recovery from some things and building up a backbone, I brought this blog back up and have just now regained the readership that I once had.  I've been blogging on homekeeping for almost 9 years now and though I feel sometimes that I've shared all I could, I seem to keep coming up with things I want to write about.

I've had offers to have advertisers on this blog but I didn't want to make this a place where you would come and it would be cluttered with ads and things that I didn't truly want to promote.  I could easily make this venture into a money-making business but it would take away from what God has called me to do - be a wife and mother!  Those come first and any extra time I have leftover (other than the 5-10 minutes it takes to write a blog post), I would rather give it to my kids or husband, than try and earn money.  Time is valuable to those that depend on me and they need me, I'm a crucial part of this home to make it run smoothly and to raise up kids that are well-loved and well-instructed.  Money just can't buy that!!

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Saturday, October 18, 2014

You Can't Divorce Jesus from the Rest of the Bible

Very well said!  Not only does this apply to homosexuality but it also applies to hot topics like keeping the home, hair, divorce/remarriage, etc.  You can't divorce Jesus from the rest of the bible because he is part of the Godhead!  He is the Word!

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Friday, October 17, 2014

Discrimination Against Christians is OK in Houston

The lesbian mayor of Houston has now said she isn't subpoenaing sermons of 5 pastors but rather their speeches.  This just shows that she thinks this is some sort of joke.  She thinks she has all power, yet she forgot that there is a higher authority; God.  Not sure what God will allow with this fiasco, but we can pray for this lady and the others involved and for their pastors that are being persecuted.

You see, it is now ok to discriminate against Christians - we are "fair game" as she called pastor's sermons that even dare to touch on homosexuals or gender identity.  We have people running Houston, Texas that would rather let a perverted man go in the women's restroom and endanger the safety of any women or children in there, than to keep them separate according to their real gender.  It is better to discriminate and silence the Christians so that homosexuals can continue on in their gross, immoral sins without a voice of truth reminding them God's Word against it.  They don't want to hear God's Word and they sure don't want the pastors of Houston preaching about it to others.

They may silence the voice eventually (God only knows what He will allow to happen) but they can't change the voice!  God views and always will view homosexuality as an abomination and something worthy of hell.  There will NO homosexuals in heaven, just like there will no murderers, liars, gossipers, etc.

In Houston, Christians don't have free speech.  In Houston, Christians have no anti-discriminatory protection.  In Houston, the devil is beginning his web of trying to eliminate the gospel truth and silence God's men.  I can't imagine what they are teaching in public schools in Houston!!!!!  I'm sure that homeschooling will be the next target and they will be wanting to see your "speeches" to your children and if they dare say anything against homosexuality, the city will force your kids under their education.  Welcome to Nazi, Germany - Hiel Parker.  Where equality is about suppressing Christians.

Here is a man standing up for truth against this tyrannical mayorship:

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Thursday, October 16, 2014

The Things People Won't Talk About

Or in other words - HOT TOPICS!  Just what is a hot topic?  To me, it is something that once spoken about or brought up, brings a firestorm of criticism because it is a sensitive topic to some people.  It is also something that is generally about truth and of God and that rubs the devil the wrong way. 

Some hot topics I've blogged about on here that have ruffled feathers are:

  1. Holiness - especially when you bring up living right
  2. Hair - this is a big one for women
  3. Proper roles of a man and woman 
  4. Birth control
  5. Keeper at Home
  6. Debt - envy and covetousness are neighbors
  7. Training Children in Godly education
  8. Social media - busybody much?
  9. Dress

Most people wouldn't dare talk about these topics because they prefer popularity or a smooth religion of no offense.  People are more concerned about offending someone than saving that person's soul from hell.  There are those that will go to hell unoffended because of your lack of standing for the truth!  There are those that will go to hell because they didn't want to offend.  Truly, the bible is offensive to those that don't follow it!  You might as well get over that and make sure you are a light to the world.

"Well, I don't want to scare all of my Facebook friends away by sharing something truthful."  So really what you are saying is that you value popularity or people liking you MORE than you value their souls.  Pastors are more concerned about being like the flock or popular among the flock, then actually being an example before the flock.  Didn't the Bible say that preachers should be instant in season and out of season?  Obviously, they will be hated if they preach and teach the truth.

Let's get busy talking and sharing the truth - there may not be much time left to share the gospel anymore in this country - as indicators have already showed us that we will (eventually) be silenced in some way.  Most people are already living like we are there already and that God is dead. 

What do you care more about?  Souls or your own reputation, popularity and "friends"?  A true friend will tell you the truth!  A true friend will tell you that the bridge is out ahead and scream for you to stop!  Will you be that true friend?  Or will you rather send people to hell by being their enemy and keeping the truth you know and the light you have, hid? 

*Note - there is a time and place to everything, I know people like to misconstrue my posts so I'm putting this in here for your benefit.  You don't go around just telling everyone off - God will lead you in a time and/or place to share God's truth.  However, if you are silent about it all the time, then who are you really trying to please?

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Poll: More Posts About What?

Please let me know by voting in the poll on the sidebar what you like to read more about here on my blog.  Thanks!

*Poll results:

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There is a place called surrender, where you realize that you can't control things and that you may not even understand WHY things happen or why God allowed it.  Thankfully, I've had some understanding after tragedy, to grasp ahold of God's all-seeing eye and wisdom, to help me surrender.  I could go through a long list of traumas in my life but I will spare you (at least in this post LOL!) and share the most recent one back in March.

I was pregnant in March and so happy that God had given me another child that the last thing on my mind was miscarriage.  I remember cooking up some homemade peanut butter cups and then having an attack of severe pain down there that got so bad and didn't stop.  We ended up going to the ER as the on-call OB thought maybe I was having an ectopic pregnancy.  Thankfully, it wasn't an ectopic but I did have a miscarriage.

I remember crying so hard for days and this was also a time when the founder of our church had died.  I became so depressed and asked God why.  I remember thinking that God hated me, it must have been something I did in the past or maybe I was just a throw away.  A few weeks later I started having really bad pain that sent me to ER and after testing we found out my gallbladder had quit working and I needed it removed.

During the surgery to remove my gallbladder, they found that my appendix was full and about to burst and they removed that too.  It was after that, that I realized that God knew all of this was coming - had I been pregnant and the surgeon not have been able to see my appendix or even do a surgery - I would have died.

God saved my life.  He orchestrated everything to save me.  That, combined with other things in the past, brought me to the place of surrender.  I realized that God can see things we can not see in the future and sometimes we will NEVER understand WHY until we get to heaven.

This pregnancy is still very early and I had severe pain last night in the middle of the night that I felt like I was going to die.  It was in my c-section incision on the inside and was excruciating.  I surrendered and I told God that He knows all and to please save my life.  If it means taking the baby, then so be it, I know that God knows what He is doing.  If this pregnancy doesn't last, I will take that as God's way of telling me I'm unable to have anymore children.  However, I don't feel that is the case - I feel that I will carry this child on to the end and it will be victorious.  I'm at the place of surrender - God is in full control and I know that He knows all and sees all, He has my best interest in mind! 

Don't let sorrow fill you if you are sick or if you are barren and don't understand why.  Realize that God knows more than you and surrender to His will and wisdom.  Farther along we'll know about it, farther along we'll understand the song goes.  Total surrender is the way to win and bring peace to your life!

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Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Third Baby on the Way!

I'm reposting this because for some reason the email didn't update properly.

Please keep us in prayer!  I'm not even going to fear losing this baby, we had prayed specifically that God would only give us a baby if it was His will and it took a while but it is time!

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Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Why I've Been Silent for a While

I've started to write many posts the past few weeks but never published them.  I've been angry.  I've asked God to help me with my anger and then I realized that what I was angry about wasn't an unholy anger as it is the same things God is angry about - every. single. day.

The news article on Fox News an hour ago took the cake and I'm bolted out of silence on this topic that I've had in my mind for quite some time.  In Houston, Texas, they have subpoenaed sermons of pastors of various denominations to see what they are saying about or against homosexuals or gender identity (even the lesbian town mayor).  If they don't turn over these sermons, they will be held in contempt court - go to jail!

Yes, we have arrived in what we all knew was coming.  This actually started many, many years ago when public school was invented by a bunch of God-haters to grab hold of the minds of this nation and mold them slowly into what they wanted and what we have today - uneducated, godless, government-following-zombies.  Now, they can fulfill their ultimate goals and let all you-know-what loose on Christians.

What I'm angry about is that MEN throughout all the past generations have sat idly by and let this happen!  Men have sat on the sidelines, haven't defended diddly squat and let future generations be raised up and brought up in a culture that has gotten more ungodly as the years have gone by.  Where are the Davids and the Daniels?  Where are the Spurgeons and the Wesleys?  A man remarked to my dad, who was a pastor and is now a preacher, that there are no young men really on fire for God anymore.  Why would there be, I mean who is raising these boys up to be infiltrated with the things of God day in and day out?  Who is training them up in God?  Rather, it is the public schools that have trained them up in atheism and parents have allowed it.  Women don't have time to raise kids anymore, or for that matter have any at all!

We are the result of the choices we have made - it is staring us in the face!  Past generations of do nothing have bred a new generation that not only does nothing but it is so full of SELF that they have no natural feelings or love for others anymore.  Why don't the adults teach these children that selfies are actually pride because posting pictures of yourself everyday is nothing but pride!  They can't teach that because they are full of it themselves.

Where are the men that will stand up and defend the gospel?  Where are the men running out into the work of God to preach and reach the lost?  Oh, that is right, they are too busy with Facebook and running their business to have time for that.  Meanwhile, America is going to hell and men are getting more and more feminine and soft.  Women are getting lazy to the point they won't even raise children for God anymore.  Children are getting so vain that they think we all owe them a living because they like have like 5,000 friends on social media.  Yep.....I've got to give credit where credit is due - Mr. Charles Frances Potter:

“Education is the most powerful ally of Humanism, and every American public school is a school of Humanism. What can the theistic Sunday Schools, meeting for an hour once a week, and teaching only a fraction of the children, do to stem the tide of a five-day program of humanistic teaching?”

It has all come to past and here we are......a society that doesn't want children or if they have them, they don't want to teach them or raise them and they could care less WHAT they are being taught or WHO is teaching them!  As long as they are being "socialized" right?  My children aren't purple penquins - they know their gender because they can look between their legs and see what God created them to be!

Let's pray for Godly men that will defend the gospel no matter what.  Christians in the past had to go through horrific things for their stand for Christ - we have had our bed of ease for so long, we are terrified of what we may have to go through in the future.  Raise up your children in the right ways and fill them with God's Word and be an example of a Godly mother in your home!  If we can't influence the souls in our own home, how can we influence those outside of it.  Start at home and mold future generations for Christ!!

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Friday, September 26, 2014

Our Family Chunk Clock

I listened to a wonderful seminar from The Homeschool Coach, Mary Ann Johnson, on Hecoa's free Not-Back-to-School Summit about the family chunk clock.  It was so amazing, I watched it again and took a LOT of notes and then also listened to the audio and printed out the handouts to make ours.  My daughter Katie has voiced to me before that she feels like she doesn't know what is next each day.  I knew that this would not only benefit me, but especially her!

How it works is, you divide your day up into chunks of things you do.  If there are days where things come up, someone gets sick, etc. (and they will!) this chunk clock helps you see a visual of what is important to finish that day, what you can skip and to help you refocus when you get off track.  You can listen to the audio on her website, just google the homeschool coach and family chunk clock.

We wanted a catchy funny name for our clock instead of the generic -- Family Chunk Clock, so we came up with "Got Chunks?" LOL!

You may be wondering what is up with the weird names on each chunk.  Well, my daughter created each of those names to add some FUN to our chunk clock!  Here are the why's of each chunk:

  • Snore No More - because we are not morning people and we must stop snoozing
  • Moddy Time - She took Mo from Mom and ddy from Buddy (my son’s nickname) to show it was for me and Buddy (Zach) to have time together.
  • Hope Lu - She took Ho from homeschool, pe from P.E. and Lu from lunch!
  • Kazm Time - Ka from Katie, Z from Zach and M from Mom - since this is our time to do individualized things
  • Chep Hour - usually 5-6pm, so an hour and she got Ch from chores and ep from prep (dinner).
  • Foing Up - Fo from food (dinner) and ing from Washing (dishes)
  • Chee - Ch from church and ee from Free(time)
  • Spied - Spi from spiritual and ed from bed

I didn't put every detail in our clock (showers, time with husband, etc.) because I wanted to keep it simple and this is our guide to show us our natural flow and/or routine.

This has already helped Katie KNOW what is next and have a visual of how our day will go.  This also is helping me in the same regards and also to have my priorities highlighted, so I don't lose sight of what is important - God, School and Family!  It will also make a great conversation piece when friends visit!

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Thursday, September 25, 2014

Making Freezer Pizza & Spaghetti Sauce in Bulk

I'm back to doing a lot of freezer cooking, though not as I did before my son was born when I made 3 months worth of meals but I'm getting there.  One thing I do like to make in bulk is our pizza and spaghetti sauces.

I make enough pizza sauce to last us for two months.  I divide it so that we have enough for 2 pizzas on Friday, using the leftovers on Saturday for lunch.  We used to only make one pizza and this sauce would have lasted us 4 months but now we are utilizing the extra pizza for leftovers.  On Friday morning, I sit one of these on the counter from the freezer and by the time I make the pizzas it is thawed completely.  I also normally do these in Ziploc bags but when I went to get them, I was out, so I had to use the containers we normally use for spaghetti and jam.

I couldn't find the recipe for the pizza sauce I use on Crystal's website (The Family Homestead), so I'm posting it here.  The one she has up now does not include the soy sauce.  I'm pretty sure this pizza sauce recipe came from her though, I've been using it for 8 years or so now!

Adapted from Crystal's recipe at The Family Homestead

Bulk Pizza Sauce
makes about 14 cups (enough for 14 X-large pizzas)

106 oz. Tomato Sauce
24 oz. Tomato Paste
1/2 cup Italian Seasonings
2 tsp. crushed garlic
4 tsp. soy sauce
4 tsp. salt

Mix together with a whisk and divide into freezer bags or containers.

We used to have spaghetti every Tuesday but now we just have it twice a month but I still need spaghetti sauce for my lasagna casseroles, which take 4 cups of sauce per casserole.  I left 4 cups of sauce in my measuring cup because I'm making my 2 lasagna casseroles today.  Here is the batch I make with a large 106 oz. tomato sauce can:

This recipe makes 16 cups of sauce for 4 lasagna casseroles with enough leftover for 2 spaghetti meals.

Adapted from Crystal's recipe at The Family Homestead

Bulk Spaghetti Sauce
makes about 19 cups

106 oz. Tomato Sauce
24 oz. Tomato Paste
60 oz. Diced Tomatoes
4 tsp. Salt
1/2 cup Italian Seasonings

Mix together with a whisk and divide into freezer bags or containers.

As you can see the only difference between pizza and spaghetti sauce is the diced tomatoes, soy sauce and garlic.  You can use garlic in your spaghetti sauce too though, but the soy sauce is normally just used in the pizza sauce.  You use diced tomatoes in spaghetti sauce to make it more liquid but you leave it out in the pizza sauce so it is thicker.  These are easy to make in bulk when you purchase those 106 oz. huge cans of tomato sauce, which is what I do!  Two of those cans lasts us 2 months of lasagna, spaghetti and pizzas.  We only need 12 of those a year and we buy them in bulk for just $56 a year for the organic sauce.

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Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Natural Remedies for Colds and Coughs

We have added more to our alternative medicine cabinet recently, mostly a lot of herbs, and I have been busy finding good recipes for natural remedies.  Since colds have made their appearance in our house this week, I was able to try several new things and am finding they are working!

Here are the recipes I used for each:
Elderberry Syrup
Thyme Cough Syrup
Garlic Syrup
Sage Gargle Rinse

The elderberry syrup recipe called for cloves but I didn't have any so I left that out.  All of us have been taking it a few times a day, even my toddler but I've had to give it to him in a syringe in order for him to swallow it.  It is very sweet!  My husband is taking it in hopes of not catching our sickness and so far, so good.  Elderberries have more vitamin c than oranges and are ant-inflammatory and contain an antioxidant and antiviral properties.

The thyme cough syrup was from Dr. Low Dog, who is an expert on herbal medicine.  It can be used for everyone of all ages.  My daughter used it for her dry cough tickle and it worked and stopped her cough!!  It only lasts a week in the fridge, so it is something I will only make when someone needs it.

I'm the only one brave enough to do the garlic syrup, it is 4 big garlic cloves blended with raw honey.  I normally just swallow crushed garlic cloves with water but this helps get it down easier.  Garlic has so many healing properties, it is the one thing you should always take when sick and even when well for prevention!  It is great when you have an infection and don't want to use antibiotics as it is antibacterial.  I use children's garlic oil in my son's ears now because he always get an ear infection with his colds but this time hopefully I caught it in time as I'm putting them in his ears every morning.  Before, I would always forget and then when he would get the ear infection it was hard to treat - so it is something I try and remember now whenever he gets a cold.

We also have found that sage gargle rinses also work wonders for sore throats!  It is another recipe from Dr. Low Dog.  My daughter's cold started with a very bad sore throat and she did the sage gargle rinse and found immediate relief.  I used it today for my sore throat and also got immediate relief!  Sage kills bacteria in the throat and can reduce inflammation, that along with the salt, soothes a sore throat.  It is pretty nasty though, so good thing we don't have to drink it!

We still use our old faithfuls for colds - echinacea, hot lemon/honey water, vitamin c and eucalyptus and steam.  I'm the only one the family that will use the Neti-pot when I get nasal congestion but my daughter is almost willing to try it next time she gets nasal congestion and my husband does only if I make him LOL!

Related: Cold/Sinus Infection Remedies and Bronchitis Remedies

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