Monday, April 19, 2010

Homemade Ice Packs

The weather is warmer and summer is right around the corner. The kids are outside more which means they are playing harder. What this means to a mom or dad is more bumps and bruises. Most of the time it’s nothing too serious, but to a 4 or 5 year old it’s just devastating. So be prepared with a homemade ice pack.

What I did is let my granddaughter Hailey draw on a ziplock bag with permanent markers to customize her boo boo ice pack and then tinted it light pink. Otherwise, you can color the liquid to their favorite color, to make it more custom for them. This works very well if you have a few children.

We have found a few ideas that work really well for reusable ice packs and to keep your coolers chilled.

Reusable gel type ice packs:

Option one:

2 cups water
1/3 cup vodka (80 proof)
Food coloring (any color you like)
Ziploc Freezer Bag

Pour liquids into ziplock freezer bag, add food coloring (you’ll know at a glance that it’s your ice pack and not something to consume) and freeze. Makes a nice gel type icepack.

Option Two:

1 cup rubbing alcohol
2 cups water
Ziploc Freezer Bag (1 quart size)
Food coloring (any color you like)

Pour liquids into freezer bag, remove air and seal bag. Place bag seal side down into another ziplock freezer bag, remove air and seal that bag. Place in freezer and use (and reuse) when needed (nice and slushy!).

Option Three:

Liquid Dish Detergent
Ziploc Freezer Bag

Squirt liquid dish detergent in a ziplock bag until the bag is about 3/4 full, seal and then freeze.


When taking ice packs from freezer to use, wrap in towel first before applying to body. If ice packs freeze too hard and aren't slushy, simply allow the ice to melt in bag then add more alcohol.

Single use method:

Prepare jello as usual, pour liquid into ziploc freezer bag and put in freezer. Wait till the jello gets really cold and gels, then use.

Lunchbox ice pack ideas:

Just freeze juice boxes the night before and toss in the lunch bag, or buy reusable plastic drink boxes, fill with juice and freeze overnight (make sure to leave room when frozen juice expands).

Fill small ziplock freezer bags with water, freeze and use as needed (solid ice block).

Camping cooler ice pack ideas:

Clean empty plastic pop bottles, fill 3/4 full with water, twist cap back on and place in freezer. Take out and use as needed.

Large ziplock freezer bags, fill with water and seal. Freeze til needed (this will be a solid ice block).

Wash empty milk cartons, fill with water, close carton and freeze (leave room for ice expansion).

Ice packs and bags in a jiffy:

You can use a bag of frozen vegetables (bags of peas or corn work best)

Fill a ziplock freezer bag with some ice (crushed or cubed), add cold water, seal bag, insert seal side down in another ziplock bag, seal that bag, then apply.

Do you have any favorite ideas to soothe a child when they get a boo boo?

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Dead Sea Salts

In ancient times, nomads traveled the desert to enjoy the soothing baths of the Dead Sea salts. Royalty also traveled for miles to take advantage of the Dead Sea salts that they believed restored their youth. They dubbed the Dead Sea salts “the fountain of youth”.

The waters from the Dead Sea are unique in that they contain 27% of various salts as compared to 3% in normal sea water. Further, while sodium accounts for approximately 80% of the salt content of normal sea water, it comprises much less of the salt total in water from the Dead Sea. Some of the same salts found in human cells are located in the Dead Sea salts. The balance of the salts in Dead Sea water are magnesium, potassium, calcium chloride and bromides.

Why are these types of salts beneficial? Magnesium is important for combating stress and fluid retention, slowing skin aging and calming the nervous system. Calcium is effective at preventing water retention, increasing circulation and strengthening bones and nails. Potassium energizes the body, helps to balance skin moisture and is a crucial mineral to replenish following intense exercise. Bromides act to ease muscle stiffness and relax muscles. Sodium is important for the lymphatic fluid balance (is important for immune system function). So we can see that bathing in high quality sea salt could replenish the minerals which are critical to our skin metabolism.

Dead Sea salt has a beneficial effect on the skin and body:

Provide relief from stress, tension and anxiety

Promote relaxation and you will sleep better

Drains out toxins to reduce overall soreness, tenderness and pain

Opens the pores to purify the skin, cleansing away dirt and sweat

Beneficial for those seeking relief from skin and medical disorders such as skin, rheumatic, joint and inflammatory diseases.

Eases muscle stiffness

Reduces muscle spasm

Excellent for sports injuries

Assists in fading bruised skin and minor scarring

Replenish the minerals which are critical to our skin metabolism

Help improve common skin irritations such as insect bites, minor rashes, and calluses on feet, as well as more serious skin conditions like athlete's foot, eczema and psoriasis

Aids in the healing dry skin, making skin softer and more supple

Improves skin tone and keep skin healthy

It is universally accepted the Dead Sea salts and vitamins can have a wonderful effect on circulation and on the metabolism.

So, take the phone off the hook, light a few candles, turn on some soft music and climb into a tub of relaxation. We have many varieties of Dead Sea Salts for your bathing pleasures.

Hailey's Dragonfly Garden Bath Products