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Several years ago, I embarked on a journey to get back to my roots and live more simply -- but even I have my limits. Jumping from the Bigger, Better, More bandwagon was fine -- so long as the Smaller, Worse, Less wagon still had climate control and Chanel No. 5. But due to a collector's set of autoimmune disorders I acquired over time, I was told to rid myself of toxins, synthetics and processed foods.

Well, dear sirs, there is nothing left to buy!

So, I went back to the basics. I researched what my great-granny would have used and started making a lot of my own stuff -- everything from toiletries to cleaning supplies -- and found most homemade concoctions worked better for me than the store-bought. Especially the toothpaste.

Now, before I go any further, I'm not a dentist and don't aim to be. My current occupation gets nasty enough without adding spit to the mix. When my dentist recently remarked about the strength of my pearlies and asked what toothpaste I buy, he hesitated when I replied "none." But upon hearing the recipe, he said it was fine, except I should add fluoride.

I've every reason to believe the man is correct, and to my credit, I did not ignore his advice. I didn't follow it either, but I pondered it long and hard. Being raised 18 years on well water without fluoride, and having brushed my teeth with my own recipe for years, I've (Knock on wood.) never had a cavity in my life. I've also never won the lottery, played a ukulele or had a date with Tom Selleck. The extent to which these things correlate, I leave up to you.

In any event, here are a few recipes I commonly use. They might make your teeth rot, your hair fall out and the leaves fall off your roses. I wouldn't try them, if I were you. All's I know is they work for me.


(I may be country, but I have more than one tooth.)

5 parts calcium powder

1 part diatomaceous earth (Relax, it's not dirt.)

2 parts baking soda

6 parts coconut oil

Essential oil of choice (I use spearmint or wintergreen.)

Combine ingredients (with fluoride, if you know what's good for you), and store in a glass jar. The texture takes some getting used to.


• For deodorant, oncologists told my mother to use corn starch after breast cancer and never antiperspirant. I typically use a dab of coconut oil (a natural anti-fungal and bacterial) with a dusting of corn starch and baking soda.

• For my garden, I mix 1 teaspoon blackstrap molasses, 2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar and 2 teaspoons fish emulsion to a pint sprayer. It stinks to high heaven, but the roses like it.

• You can even make your own hairspray with 3/4 cup filtered hot water, 3 teaspoons white cane sugar and 1 1/2 teaspoons high proof alcohol (vodka or schnapps).

And if you don't like it as hairspray, you can drink it. You can't say that for Aqua Net.

NAN Our Town on 06/14/2018

Print Headline: Back porch potions

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