Our Number One Use for Tea Tree Oil

I’ve mentioned before that we love to use essential oils. There are so many to choose from and their benefits are endless.

Today I wanted to share a little bit about number one use for Tea Tree Oil.

Tea Tree Oil, also known as Melaleuca, is an oil extracted mainly from the Melaleuca alternifolia plant but can also be extracted from other Melaleuca species. The Melaleuca alternifolia is native to Australia and its oil has been widely used there for over one hundred years.

Tea Tree Oil is well known for its antibacterial, antimicrobial, antiseptic and antiviral powers.

Contrary to what its name suggests, Tea Tree Oil is not a tea, should not be consumed, and should only be used topically. Ingesting Tea Tree Oil has been known to cause confusion, drowsiness, hallucinations, severe intestinal discomfort, diarrhea, vomiting, coma and other serious side effects.

With that being said, however, its topical uses are countless and its benefits are phenomenal

For several years, Mr. SBF has had an ongoing battle with eczema on his right leg. Depending on how severe the flare-up is, it can cover the area around the outside of his ankle to the whole shin and calf.

When the symptoms and rash first began to appear, we treated it with various creams and rash ointments but to no avail. In fact, with each new cream, the rash seemed to spread and to get worse.

I did some research on the causes of eczema and studies suggest that eczema can be due to something in the diet (mainly, too much dairy and/or too much sugar). So, he made some dietary modifications so that he wasn’t eating as much dairy or sugar. But there was still no improvement.

So, I went back to the internet and did some more research. Other than genetics, the only thing that seemed to be left was stress. In some cases, stress can cause breakouts of eczema. Well, that certainly made sense because, at the time of the initial breakout, he was under extreme stress at his job. In fact, the eczema was so severe that at one point, his skin was so inflamed that it cracked and bled. All the while, we were searching for something that would help to relieve the discomfort as well as to heal it.

After three years of battling this crud, Mr. SBF finally went to work someplace else. I’d love to say that this cured the eczema but it didn’t. However, with a less stressful job, the eczema did subside a bit. The inflammation lessened and the cracks began to heal. Around that time, I read about the healing qualities of Tea Tree Oil and we decided to give it a try. I mixed a few drops with some coconut oil and he applied it to his leg two to three times per day. Much to our relief, the eczema began to subside! He used the ointment for several weeks and the cracks healed completely and the dry, itchy patches went away. All that remained was some redness in the places where the eczema had been the worst.  The only thing Mr. SBF didn’t like about my homemade ointment was the fact that coconut oil is so, well, oily. It does eventually absorb into the skin, but he didn’t have the time (or wasn’t willing-haha) to wait around every morning for the oil to absorb into his skin before getting dressed for work.

So I did a little digging around on the internet and found a great line of products called TheraTree (available through Amazon) which contains Tea Tree Oil and other natural ingredients. I ordered the therapeutic balm and lotion. He began applying those every day and noticed an increase in the skin’s smoothness and return to normalcy. For the past year, he has been using these products daily to maintain the health of his skin and I am happy to report that there have no more eczema flare-ups since using the Tea Tree Oil and TheraTree products.

Tea Tree Oil is truly an amazing thing! Its benefits are countless but this just happens to be our top use for Tea Tree Oil. We are firm believers in the use of essential oils and have reaped the benefits of so many of them.

How about you? Have you benefited from the use of essential oils?  We would love to hear your number one use for Tea Tree or any other essential oil!



*Any purchases you make using my links will generate a commission from Amazon on my behalf.

**The information provided in this post is the personal opinion and experience of the author. We are not healthcare professionals.



Reasons Why We Shop on Amazon

So, I’m sure you’ve heard of Amazon. I mean, how could you not? There was a “buzz” just a while back about Amazon “taking over the world” because they are expanding and diversifying their market. When companies grow the way Amazon has, people tend to freak out. I totally get it. We’re all for supporting small businesses and shopping locally whenever we can but we also do a lot of shopping on Amazon and here’s why.

First of all, we live in rural northern Nevada. We live in a town with a grocery store and a handful of small businesses who attempt to provide its residents with products they think we’ll need. But for us, it just isn’t enough. The selection of household items (eg. appliances, electronics, apparel and such) is limited at best. And since we live 65+ miles away from the nearest town with larger retailers, shopping on Amazon just makes sense for us.

We can shop online, from the convenience of our home, wearing our pajamas if we want to, and have everything delivered to our door within 48 hours (most of the time) with our Prime Membership. We have found that shopping through Amazon allows us to compare brands and prices as well as read consumer reviews on items we’re considering purchasing.

And did you know that you can gift someone an Amazon Prime Membership? Isn’t that great?

One of my favorite things about shopping on Amazon is their Subscribe & Save feature. With Subscribe & Save, I am able to select items that I purchase on a regular basis and schedule them to be automatically shipped to my door on a specific day of the month. By using the Subscribe & Save feature, I am able to save up to an additional 15% on the things we use on a regular basis (eg. pet food & pantry items). The items I have on my Subscribe & Save list are less expensive on Amazon than at any other retail chain and I get to have them delivered to my door! Trust me, having that 20lb. box of cat litter delivered to me is awesome! Instead of lugging it into my shopping cart, to my car, and into my house, I now only have to lug it from my porch into my house. And since we have a Prime Membership, the shipping is free!

Plus, by having certain items delivered to me on a regular basis, when I do have to go out of town for shopping, my list is shorter and it doesn’t take as long, thus leaving us plenty of time to do something fun while we’re out and about (like go to the movies or a museum or something) and life needs to be fun!

Another thing we love about Amazon is their Prime Video which is included with an Amazon Prime Membership. Prime Video has popular television shows, Amazon exclusive series, and blockbuster movies. With Prime Video you can also purchase premium channels (eg. HBO) at a lower price than with other providers. Since we no longer use a satellite television service, Prime Video is a definite plus.

For most people who live rurally, shopping online is simply a way of life. Amazon is one of our preferred sites for our online shopping. Their prices and selection are great and their customer service is top-notch. We have encountered few problems in the years we’ve been using Amazon but when we have had to contact them, they have handled and remedied our concern quickly and efficiently.

Honestly, shopping on Amazon just makes my life a little bit easier. And I’m all for life being easier!

What about you? Are you an Amazon shopper? Leave a comment and tell us why or why not. We’re always curious about other people’s perspectives and experiences. Well, at least I am. Mr. SBF doesn’t really read the comments. He’s more of a behind the scenes participant here but I would love to hear from you!


Sunshine Blogger Award -Round Two!


I am honored, amazed and humbled to say that I have been nominated for the Sunshine Blogger Award for the second time! The Sunshine Blogger Award recognizes blogs that are considered to be interesting, creative and uplifting by fellow bloggers. Wow!
Thank you so much to Brooke at OrdinaryJoy for this nomination! Brooke’s blog is all about finding, choosing and experiencing joy in the everyday things of life. It is uplifting, encouraging and a joy to read her posts!


Here are the questions Brooke selected for me:

What is your favorite thing to do on a Saturday afternoon?   

~Mr. SBF and I love to go on short road trips.

What was your favorite subject growing up and why? 

~English. Mainly because I love to read and to write, but I also think it’s important to learn how to become a good communicator.

Who has been the most influential person in your life and why?

~Probably my momma. Because she both demonstrated and taught me about unconditional love.

What is the bravest thing you’ve ever done? 

~Raised three children! Parenting is hard and scary work!

What is your favorite color? 

~I don’t have a favorite color. I appreciate them all, mostly.

How do you find ordinary joy in the everyday moments of life?

~I have learned to appreciate each moment because we don’t know how long we’re here for.

Where’s your favorite place you’ve ever traveled? 

~Any place with an ocean!

What are your top three songs to listen to right now?

~That’s a tough one. I usually only listen to music in the car these days. Hmm…can I get back to you on that one?

Who is the person you go to when you’re upset?

~Mr. SBF. He is my best friend.

Matching pajamas: yay or nay?

~Depends on who I’m matching with.

Top three books you’ve ever read in your lifetime?

~The Shack, Gideon’s Dawn, and The Chronological Guide to the Bible. They were all very timely and influential in the paradigm shift I was experiencing when I read them.



Here are the Rules for accepting the nomination:

  1. Thank blogger(s) who nominated you in the blog post and link back to their blog.
  2. Answer the 11 questions the blogger asked you.
  3. Nominate 11 new blogs to receive the award and write them 11 new questions.
  4. List the rules and display the Sunshine Blogger Award logo in your post and/or on your blog.


Here are my eleven nominees:


And last but not least, my eleven questions for the nominees:

  1. What is your favorite thing about blogging?
  2. What is the main goal or focus of your website?
  3. When did you launch your website?
  4. What do you do to relax?
  5. Are you more of an indoor person or an outdoor person?
  6. Who is/has been the most influential person in your life?
  7. What’s your favorite comfort food?
  8. Do you tend to be a loner or a “team player”?
  9. Favorite travel destination?
  10. Do you prefer the ocean, desert, mountains or prairies?
  11. What is your preferred method of travel?

Thank you again, to Brooke, for the nomination! It has been fun answering the questions and getting to know others in the blogging community. All of the those mentioned in my Sunshine Blogger Award posts are worthy of the nomination and have wonderful websites. I wish them all the best.

And thank you, too, dear reader for being here! YOU are the reason that we (bloggers) do what we do!



Gluten-Free Oatmeal Cookies

Today, this Nonnie is sharing a brand new recipe for Gluten-Free Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies. If you follow me on social media, you know that I’ve been blowing up my Facebook page, Instagram and Twitter accounts with posts of our new little grandson. I can’t help it. He’s just so cute!

Anyway, since LittleMan was born, my nurture instincts have kicked into high gear and for me, part of nurturing is to feed people. It’s been a little hectic the past couple of weeks so I haven’t spent very much time in the kitchen other than to throw some quick meals together and we were all having some comfort food withdrawals. So yesterday I decided to bake some of our favorite traditional Chocolate Chip Cookies.

LittleMan and his Mommy & Daddy are staying with us for a few days and since his Mommy is gluten intolerant, I realized that she wouldn’t be able to eat our cookies so I found some gluten-free oatmeal from Trader Joe’s in the pantry and discovered that it had a gluten-free cookie recipe right on the package. Obviously, I can’t take credit for this recipe but I can certainly share it with you. They are absolutely delicious!

The only thing I did differently from the recipe printed on the package was omitted the nuts and pressed the cookies down slightly before baking them because I wasn’t sure home much they would spread out. They turned out perfect!

I hope you enjoy the recipe as much as we have.




Save this recipe on Pinterest and come back and let me know what you think of them!

Print Recipe
Gluten-Free Oatmeal Cookies
Soft, chewy and delicious! Gluten-free never tasted so good.
Course Dessert
Cuisine Sweets
Prep Time 10 Minutes
Cook Time 10-12 Minutes
Course Dessert
Cuisine Sweets
Prep Time 10 Minutes
Cook Time 10-12 Minutes
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. In a large bowl, combine sugar, brown sugar and softened butter and beat until fluffy. Add eggs, vanilla and baking soda and mix well. Add peanut butter and mix. Stir in oats, chocolate chips and nuts (optional).
  3. Place each rounded teaspoon full of dough on cookie sheet about two inches apart. Press each cookie down slightly. Bake for 10-12 minutes until lightly brown around the edges.
  4. Remove from oven. Cool slightly on cookie sheet then move cookies onto paper towels or parchment paper to cool completely.

Cooking with Cast Iron

It seems that over the decades cooking with cast iron has had mixed reviews. I seem to recall a time where the consensus was that it was more harmful than beneficial to cook with cast iron, but alas, those days are over!

A few years ago, I got it in my head that I wanted a cast iron, stovetop griddle pan. It seemed like I was always cooking breakfast for a crowd and figured that if I had one of those cast iron griddles that covered two stove burners, I might be able to get breakfast ready more efficiently. Well, I guess I must have mentioned it often enough because for my birthday that year, ManBoy bought me one!

And so began my quest to replace my old cookware with cast iron cookware!

The griddle pan works great for things like pancakes, french toast, and grilled sandwiches. It’s also reversible! One side is smooth (for pancakes and such) and the other side has grill grooves for cooking meat. But I have found that when both sides are “seasoned”, it creates a lot of smoke when you’re cooking because the oils that create the “seasoning” on the pan burn when they come into contact with the flame from the burner.

Thus, I decided that my second piece of cast iron should be a grill pan. We love the taste of grilled food but I don’t like to stand out in the cold during winter time to cook, so I thought the grill pan would solve this issue. Honestly, the food cooked on the grill pan doesn’t taste like an outdoor barbecue, but I still like to use it to cook certain meats. The grooves allow the fat to drip off the meat so you have a leaner meal. At least that’s what I tell myself. Haha.

My next piece of cast iron cookware was a ten(ish) inch dutch oven, also gifted to me by ManBoy. I think he got me this piece because he had been reading about dutch oven cooking for camping and figured he would get it for me so that I could be the one to experiment! I haven’t actually taken it camping with us but I have experimented with it! I have done everything from baking bread to roasting chicken to frying potatoes in it. It is very versatile and I absolutely love it. In fact, I would love to get a cast iron roasting pan to bake larger loaves of bread and to cook a turkey in! Someday.

Next up is the cast iron “comal” that my mother-in-law gave me. It was one of hers from when she used to make homemade tortillas every day. It is well seasoned and has had a lot of use. But it still looks brand new! I love it and use it for making tortillas as well. And if I don’t feel like getting the griddle pan out, I make quesadillas on it (chicken quesadillas are our favorite). It’s the perfect size for them!

Last year I found a two pack cast iron skillet set with silicone grips for a great price and since I didn’t have any cast iron skillets in my cupboards, they were an absolute must-have! The set included a ten inch and a twelve-inch skillet. We love to use the twelve inch one for cast iron deep dish pizza. Oh, my goodness, it turns out so well; I’m salivating just thinking about it. I know, TMI, right? And believe it or not, it is also great for stir fry! These pans are awesome and the silicone grips are fabulous!

And lastly, thus far, is an eleven-inch skillet I picked up last summer while we were camping because, can you believe, I forgot to pack a skillet to take with us?! Thankfully we were camping somewhere where there was a general store nearby who stocked them because I’m sure I’m not the only person to have ever gone off camping without a skillet to cook on! Sheesh.

As you can see, I have acquired a nice collection of cast iron cookware. I have all of the essentials. Now, not all of my pieces are the same brand but they all serve their purpose well.

As I said before, cooking with cast iron has its benefits. They are sturdy, reliable, and the pieces are relatively inexpensive. Amazon is a great place to shop for your cast iron. Not all brands are created equal though and some brands are more pricey than others. But considering the fact that they will last forever, they are well worth whatever price you decide to pay. Switching to cast iron cookware hasn’t cost me a lot of money (especially since some were gifts!) but even if I did have to pay a lot, I would.

The most important benefit to cooking with cast iron is the fact that they fortify the food with iron. This became especially important to us when Girl2 began to display symptoms and evidence of anemia. After some research into how we could increase her iron intake, switching to cast iron seemed like a no-brainer. She still lives at home and still eats dinner with us almost every night so continuing with cast iron cooking is a must (not that I would stop anyway)!

The only negative input I have about cast iron cooking is that the pieces are heavy. I discovered that this was an issue for me when I was dealing with some inflammation in my body (symptoms of arthritis). When I was inflamed, I had a hard time picking them up and had to use both hands on all the pieces. I have since remedied my inflammation issues with Moringa seeds and powder (but that’s another post!) and am no longer struggling with the weight of the pans.

And even though they add weight to our camping gear, I still take a piece or two with us when we go camping. They withstand the heat from a campfire flame very well and have simply become my most trusted cookware.

If you’ve never cooked with cast iron before, you might want to pick up a small skillet and give it a try. If you do, come back and let me know what you think!

Any purchases you make using my links will generate a commission from Amazon on my behalf.





What Happens When You Become A Grandma

Finding out you’re going to become a grandparent is pretty exciting and I’m used to people saying that being a grandma is “the best”, but I don’t think I’ve ever really heard people say what actually happens when you become a grandma. Or maybe I just haven’t listened closely enough! For me, becoming a grandma has been overwhelming. Overwhelming in a good way, that is!

There are two main things that “happened” to me when I became a grandma.

The first thing was that my mommy instincts kicked right back in. Holding, feeding, burping, diapering…all of the essential baby care tasks came back in an instant. I was so surprised. My youngest child is almost twenty so I thought for sure that I would be out of practice. But I guess it’s like riding a bike; once you’ve learned, you never forget how. The same goes for caring for a baby, apparently!

The other thing that happened when I became a grandma was that my heart grew bigger. I have three children and with each one my capacity to love increased. It’s a natural occurrence, I’m sure, instinctual, perhaps. But the birth of our newest little grandson has made me feel a bit like the Grinch when he has his epiphany about Christmas and experiences a change of heart toward everyone in Whoville. The story says that his heart grew three sizes and that he had the strength of “ten grinches plus two”. This is exactly how I feel! The birth of this little has filled me to the point of bursting! I feel a bit giddy and have noticed an increase of energy and a lightness of heart.

I think that one of the reasons that becoming a grandma is so amazing is that while we are raising our children, we forget. We forget the initial flood of love and emotion that occurs when they are born because raising children is hard work. While they are growing up we are dealing with their emotions, hormones, attitudes and everything else that goes with it and the “new parent euphoria” wears off. When you become a grandma, the euphoria comes back. And I have a feeling that it lasts longer for grandparents than it does for parents.

Perhaps it’s because, generally, grandparents aren’t responsible for raising them. We influence our grandchildren, for sure, but the pressures of parenthood aren’t heavy upon us. We are free(er) to simply enjoy (and spoil) them!

The other evening, as I was holding LittleMan, Girl2 teased about how I’ve been since his birth. Well, I can’t help it! When she has children, she’ll understand. And when she has grandchildren, she’ll marvel at her heart just as I marvel at mine now.

Becoming a grandma has been one of the best experiences of my life and I hope that as the grandchildren grow I will remember to enjoy every moment with them and to be a constant source of support for their parents. Like I said, raising children is hard work. But as a grandma, I am older so I have a reserve of information, wisdom, and patience!

We are blessed by our children and doubly blessed by our grandchildren. That is the truth of it. It’s what happens when you become a grandma; the blessings abound! The anticipation of LittleMan’s birth was nerve-wracking but his arrival has been overwhelmingly amazing!

We’re excited to watch the grandchildren grow and as they do, this Nonnie will continue to share about the amazing adventures of becoming a grandma!




Twigs Flowers & Gifts in Yerington NV

With Valentine’s Day just around the corner, I thought it only appropriate to share a little bit about our hometown flower shop – Twigs!


Twigs is a beautiful little shop on the south end of town, providing wonderfully creative floral designs to Yerington residents. Owner/Designer, Tracey is passionate about creating both beautiful and one-of-a-kind arrangements for her clients.


The shop is filled with unique and upscale gift items, household goods, soaps, lotions, jewelry, chocolates, a selection of baby items and plenty of other goodies!

As you can see from the photos, Twigs is all geared up for Valentine’s Day! This is just a sampling of what Twigs can provide for your special someone. It’s a wonderful place to shop for a great gift.

If you aren’t a local resident but want to send flowers or a gift to someone in Yerington, Twigs is happy to accept your order and to provide exceptional service to your gift recipient. Visit their website here!

And if you’re in Yerington, stop by, say hi and take a look around!