It’s that time of year again, you know the one I am talking about. Halloween has passed, Christmas is on the horizon and everywhere we turn people are sneezing, sniffling and hacking up a storm. Forget Fall. It’s cold and flu season.
At the same time that we are adjusting our clocks, Josie and I religiously do five things in our homes:
- We make a batch of our famous italian brodo
- We buy additional cleaning products to reduce germs on door handles and light switches
- We check the batteries in our smoke alarms
- We make sure we can easily locate our Braun ThermoScan®7 Age Precision® thermometer
- We place our Vicks® Warm Steam Vapourizer in the kids rooms along with a supply of Vicks VapoSteam®
I want to spend just a few moments talking about points four and five because in our opinion they are essential in making this winter a healthy and happy one.
But before we go there, we would be remiss if we didn’t offer one word of caution to all of you. Stay away from Dr. Google. I know we all do it. Our kids get a fever, maybe a rash, a barking cough or a nose that won’t stop running. We panic. We worry. And we Google. We need to stop that. Google is not your doctor. It is a tool and not the most helpful one either. Go to your doctor if you need to, trust your gut and be armed with items in your house to help your child get better. Braun Thermometers and Vicks Humidifiers are our go-to tools.
Our first favourite product in the battle against the cold and flu is our Braun ThermoScan®7 Age Precision® thermometer (it is the #1 pediatrician and mom trusted thermometer). New research has shown that the definition of a fever changes with the age of your child (who knew?? I didn’t!). The temperature for a child under three months is different than that of a child over 36 months. Knowing this, Braun has created an innovative thermometer that is age adjustable and can then accurately let you know if your child is running a fever or not.
Knowing moms and how we need to know how bad the fever is, this thermometer tells you if your child has a normal, elevated or high temp. How great is that? It also warms the tip of the thermometer, allowing for a more accurate reading (most thermometers have a cool tip, creating room for error). For Josie and me having this tool in our cold and flu arsenal is a must-have.
We also love our Vicks® Warm Steam Vapourizer. Well, I like the warm steam while Josie and her household prefer the Vicks® Cold Mist Humidifier. With our furnaces on and windows shut, our homes have less moisture than the Sahara Desert (and we are not kidding here, studies have proven this!). These two products help keep your room at Relative Humidity Level of 40-60% which greatly reduces the survival of flu viruses on surfaces and in the air. They work equally as well so it all comes down to a matter of preference.
Just so you know, the Cool Mist humidifiers help maintain overall room temperature and when used with the Vicks VapoPads® your room will also have a soothing scent. The Warm Mist humidifiers work with liquid inhalants like Vicks VapoSteam, together they provide cough relief and added comfort (say bye bye to the hacking cough, constant sneezing and on-going congestion that keeps you up all night!).
We have one more cold and flu prevention secret to let you in on. As little girls our mom use to always make us Italian Brodo broth whenever we were sick (I sometimes faked it just to have another bowl). As our faithful readers, we have provided you the recipe. Enjoy and let us know how you like it.
Italian Brodo Recipe ( Serves 4 to 6)
- Soup chicken pieces (3-3.5 pounds total)
- 5-5 litres cold water to make the broth (you will need extra if doing the chicken pre-boil step)
- 1 pack of Orzo or Mini Butterfly pasta
- 2 roma tomatoes (cut in half)
- 2 large carrots (cut in half)
- 2 celery stalks (cut in half)
- ½ cup of parsley (To garnish soup with)
- 1 medium onion (cut in half)
- 5 medium new potato (peeled but left whole)
- ½ cup of grated parmigiano reggiano
- Rinse chicken with cold water and trim off any excess fat.
- Place in a stock pot and add enough water to completely cover the chicken. Place on the stove and heat until the water begins to boil then immediately remove the pot from the stove. Lift out the chicken and discard the water. Rinse off the chicken.
- Place the pre-boiled and rinsed chicken pieces along with all of the other ingredients except the salt into a new pot.
- Cover with 4.5-5 litres of cold water. Place over medium-high heat and allow everything to come to a boil. As soon as it begins to boil, reduce the heat enough to allow the soup to simmer gently. Partially cover the pot and allow to simmer for 2.5-3 hours. Test for seasoning and add salt to your liking.
- The chicken should be very tender and easily falls off the bone.
- Remove the chicken and vegetables from the pot then strain the broth through a colander.
- Boil one pack of Orzo pasta
- Add Orzo or butterfly pasta to broth and serve, garnish with parmigiano reggiano cheese & sprinkle of parsley plus one drop of oil per plate.
This post is sponsored however all thoughts and ideas are our own.