Camping on Lake Superior

Camping on Lake Superior
Camping Day 2

It didn’t just rain, it stormed.  Camping on Lake Superior makes sound travel quite a distance.  So thunder and lightning illuminated the tent like an all-night fireworks show.  Rain pattered the tent almost constantly and some moments, it sounded like the sky opened up and dumped everything it had on us.

At one point, Nate got up to check on the floor to see how wet it was.  He moved my bags from the side of the bed to the end.  My side of the tent was floating on a large puddle of water that was caught between the tent and the tarp.  It wasn’t leaking in, but it was damp.  He pushed on it to show how it jiggled like a waterbed.

Despite the lack of sleep, I was excited to get up when my alarm went off.  The rain had stopped and soft light and the sound of birds greeted me.  I dressed for the Kingdom Hall along with Cupcake.  At the last minute, the rest of the family decided to join us so they could explore Grand Marais.

I drove carefully down the road through thick fog.  Fog is so beautiful.  The air smells sweet and delicious.  The cool air is comforting and invigorating.  I kind of wish I could start every morning with a beautiful thick lake fog.

The Grand Marais Kingdom Hall was adorable.  It was a small, beautiful building with tall windows along each side.  Every once and awhile a bird would fly by and I’d have to refocus on what was going on inside, rather than the beauty outside.

The talk itself was so good!  The part that stuck with me was a metaphor.  If Jehovah throws us a lifesaver when we’re drowning, it’s up to us to make the effort to reach out.  All the life preservers in the world won’t matter if we don’t make the effort to reach out and grab that help he’s offering us.

After heading back to our campsite, I made bug spray.  The kids ran around playing while I enjoyed my tea.  We were all exhausted so we took a nap.  Once we woke up, we were ready for adventure!

We hiked down acrossTemperance River through the fog.  At the bridge, we used our drone* to take a family portrait.  There was a couple next to us who used to come to Temperance with their kids but this time, they were alone, their children all grown up.  It made me feel like freezing time and holding my babies in my arms.

They’ve grown up so fast.  Before I know it, they’ll have moved on with their lives and I’ll be taking vacations without them.  Right now, they are my little people.  I can protect them, guide them, love them and adore my time with them.  I don’t want to waste a moment.

We had a lot of fun exploring the rocks along the shore.  We’ve never gone past the beach before so we enjoyed going a little further.  Mr. Awesome was having a lot of fun jumping from rock to rock.  I think if we let them, they would have gone along the shore until they were tired.

We wanted to have dinner and relax before it got dark, so we walked back to our campsite.  Princess and I had butter mushrooms for dinner while everyone else had brats.

It was a wonderful day.  Camping on Lake Superior is so peaceful, an experience which could almost tantamount to the time when we’d been camping in Yosemite National Park. That night we crawled into bed and fell asleep to the sound of wind through the trees and slept deeply.

*Note: We found out later after asking a park ranger about their drone policies that drones are no longer allowed at State Parks.  They changed the policy last year.  Drones are interfering with Peregrine Falcon nesting grounds in certain areas.  Rather than police certain areas where they shouldn’t be used, they issued a full ban.  The videos we took with our drone were the only ones we took for the trip.  Birds are more important than getting some pretty footage for videos.

Check out our video from our day!

Did you miss Camping, Day 1?  Read about it here!

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Traditional Medicinal Teas

Traditional Medicinal Teas

I love Traditional Medicinal teas for so many reasons.  They’re allergy friendly, organic, high quality, formulated by herbalists, they go through 9 levels of quality control testing and they’re delicious!  I am not getting paid to say any of this, I simply love them.  They contribute to the good health of my family and that is worth sharing.

Almost all of the Traditional Medicinal teas are corn free.  This is rare and wonderful.  Every other brand I’ve ever tried has been corn-taminated in some way.  Having safe, guilt-free, pain-free beverages is such a blessing.  Some days, post allergy exposure, I live on nothing but tea.  Without them, I would be left with only water, which is good, but it doesn’t fill my appetite.  Plus, the tea helps my body heal and recover.

I’ve read some articles  about the large amount of teas on the market being heavily sprayed with pesticides.  In addition to that, the tea bags themselves are also highly toxic!  In response, some companies have gone organic (but not corn free) or have tried using less toxic bags (made from corn).  Thankfully, Traditional Medicinals are the best quality I’ve found.  They are both corn free and non-toxic.

I’ll run you through a few of my favorites and how I use them.  Some teas we drink daily and some are once a week or seasonally.  Some we drink for pure enjoyment and others are for specific health reasons.  You don’t have to only drink them for their medicinal properties, you can simply have them for the joy of it!

Gypsy Cold Care

Traditional Medicinals Seasonal Sampler
This is one of my favorites.  I’ve listed it first because this one not only tastes good, but the health benefits are amazing.  I started drinking this after my mother gave me the Seasonal Sampler box when I was sick.  It really helps kick the cold out.  Whenever I’m afraid one of the kids or I’m coming down with something, I brew up a cup to chase away the illness.  I like it plain and sometimes with honey.  I find it doesn’t need honey and I almost never use it with this tea anymore.

Breathe Easy

Traditional Medicinals Breathe Easy Tea
I’m listing this one second because I feel it’s incredibly important.  With my asthma and my earlier in life penchant for coming down with pneumonia at the drop of a hat, breathing is very important.  If I get a cold with a cough or I have allergy exposure that makes it difficult to breathe, this tea is a lifesaver.  I’ll make a nice steamy cup, cradle it in my hands, bend over the cup and breathe in the steam.  After it cools I’ll sip it slowly to try and prolong my exposure.  I do enjoy honey in this one.  Honey is great for breathing problems too.

Roasted Dandelion Root

Roasted Dandelion Root Traditional Medicinals
This is my current favorite.  I haven’t been able to find corn-free coffee.  I love coffee, but if I cheat and drink some, I get incredibly sick.  I actually bought this tea because it was on sale and I had been meaning to try it for its health properties.  Dandelion root is amazing for detoxifying the liver.  Once I tasted it plain, a light bulb went off over my head, it tasted like coffee!  Since then, I have not had a single drop of coffee.  I drink roasted dandelion root “coffee” every day, it’s so good.  I add a little local 100% pure maple syrup and local organic grass fed heavy whipping cream.  I have made it for my kids, my family and friends and they all agree with me that it’s amazing.

Throat Coat

This tea is fantastic for sore throats.  I think it tastes great, especially with honey.  However, my kids are not big fans.  They usually complain when I make them a cup.  I add extra honey so they’ll drink it.  I don’t feel guilty about extra sugar, honey helps to soothe and heal sore throats.  Thankfully, this one is part of the seasonal sampler, if you’d like to try a variety of their teas.Traditional Medicinals Seasonal Sampler

Echinacea Plus

Traditional Medicinals Seasonal Sampler
If you don’t already know, echinacea is amazing for immune system support.

Lavender Chamomile

Traditional Medicinals Chamomile with Lavender
When I first saw this tea, I was really excited to try it.  I love lavender.  I had been looking for a good chamomile to help me relax before bed or when I feel stressed out.  This one is soothing and perfect for both of those.

Hibiscus Green Tea

I have read great things about using hibiscus for a healthy heart and also as a vitamin C source.  I needed a safe, corn free green tea and went searching for one that was allergy friendly, non-toxic, and affordable.  When I stumbled across hibiscus green tea, from traditional medicinals, I was excited to give it a try.  It’s a bit more tart than I expected.  I use honey and cream to sweeten it.  I’m going to make my next batch of Kombucha with it for a little variety.

There are many other great blends made by Traditional Medicinals.  I hope that this inspires you to give them a try!  Do you drink Traditional Medicinals?  What is your favorite?  Have you tried any of my favorites for yourself after reading this?  Let me know!  🙂