Feeling sick? This is how my family fights off those nasty bugs during the cold winter months!
This is my method for making a pot of herbal tea for the whole family all at once! some of us like it hot, and some of us like it cold!
Spruce trees have the most amazing scent to them, and it sure comes out when you throw some branches into a pot of boiling water. The whole house just fills with this warm, wintry fresh scent of spruce needles. It has this magical touch that just makes your space feel a little more like home.
We use spruce for a wide variety of things in our home, especially during cold and flu season. We have two large spruces in our yard so when the tickle in the throat hits, i mix up my effective and tasty herbal remedy! Just imagine, waking up after a long sleep, feeling a bit run down, sore throat, sleepy eyes, frazzled hair ( do moms even get to wash their hair ???) and i throw on my house coat and my husbands giant boots and walk outside through the snow, grab a few spruce branches right off the tree, and then bring my bounty back inside. I always leave a little something behind when i pick. Either a thank you to the tree for what is has given, or some birdseed to the birds that live in it, or a bit of tobacco on the ground. Something to say , Thank you and that i appreciate the tree. It is important to always give back with everything you do in Mother Nature. Laying down seeds, cleaning up garbage left by someone else, or planting a tree.
Ok, now back to the delicious warm tea... Oh yeah, cold winter morning, grabbing spruce branches. So now i go inside with my branches and boil a pot of water. We use a large pot of water on the stove, becasue we have a large family, but also becasue we like to pour it into a jug and drink it through the day. We make about 2 jugs a day, 3 if there's a flu bug going around the house. Once my water is at a rolling boil, i toss in my herbal blend of choice. then i toss in the spruce branches and add in a little bit of spruce gum. The spruce gum will add a strong flavor to your tea and it will stick to the sides so be fore-warned! Ill let the tea boil for 30 seconds and then i turn down the heat to a low simmer. (don't over boil or you may destroy the enzymes and important minerals and vitamins inside the plants) It is best to let the combination simmer and steep for 30 minutes to an hour, if you like strong tea. For those who like milder flavor, steep for 15 minutes. Just keep in mind that the longer it steeps, the more benefits you will get! When this is done, just strain the pot using a sieve . I bought one of those medium sized sieves from the dollar store and this works perfect for us. Strain it right into the container of your choice and enjoy. Add in some sweetener if you like, but please don't ruin it by adding in heavily refined sugars!! Use unpasteurized honey instead.
Some people ask, why do we use spruce?It is known to be EXTREMELY HIGH IN VITAMIN C ! You could even add in some rose hips, those are also packed full of vitamin C. Also the bed-straws that are in my herbal blend are also very high in vitamin C. Everything that we use in this type of tea is to help support the immune system, so that your body has what it needs to fight off whatever bug you may have picked up. Now more then ever we need to make sure that our body has what it needs to defend itself from invaders. Sterilization, heavy sanitation, low immune function due to poor diet, no exercise and limited sun exposure all make us more susceptible to getting severely sick. The problem is not the getting sick part though, the problem is how your body reacts when it gets sick. We NEED to be exposed to viruses, bacteria and pathogens, our body NEEDS the practice! Without the practice, it does not know what to do in the event of an invasion... When you support your body, and support your immune system, you are giving it the tools it needs to keep you healthy and strong. This is the difference between getting a cold that lasts for two weeks, or getting a cold that starts with a sore throat and ends in two days !