Herbs are replete with enchanting scents, be it the beautiful scent of a rose or the lemony green smell of just crushed lemon balm. Like essential oils, hydrosols are a way for us to capture these lovely smells and other amazing properties of many herbs to use and enjoy. The fragrant flowers and plants of high summer are wonderful for making your very own hydrosols at home.Read More
The lavender plant has been used for thousands of years. It’s Latin root, lavare, means to wash. In fact, lavender was passed down through the centuries as a cleansing agent and disinfectant against demons as evil as the plague. Born on spikes of beautiful purple flowers, the fragrance of lavender is soothing yet stimulating all at once. Lavender essential oil is the most versatile and useful of all plant essences.Read More
A dear friend who is expecting her first baby recently celebrated a birthday. She loves herbs and essential oils, and it is always fun to make something special for her. So of course I had to give her a little herbal love for her birthday.Read More
♥ Let's explore herbs and aromas with play dough. ♥
Our second week of summer camp is all about play dough!
Playing with play dough provides an opprotunity for creation and stress relief for little kids. It is a tactile experience that helps kids explore the world. Add herbs and essential oils to the play dough and you have a therapeutic aromatherapy experience happening too. This week join us in making lots of different herbal play dough combinations.Read More
Experiments In Acid-Base Chemistry
What do you get when you mix an acid with a base?
"It is like the acid and the base like each other so much
that they make the best of bubbly friends."
This is one way that I explain the fun, interesting chemical reaction of acid/base mixing to little kids. I also make sure we talk a bit about the ph scale; where an acid and a base are on that scale; and how when mixed together, they meet in the middle becoming neutralized.Read More
Heart opening roses in the bath restores the nervous system while cleansing and toning the skin.
Oatmeal in the bath creates a rich mucilage that is extremely soothing to dry skin.
Rose Geranium eases nervous tension and rejuvenates skin.
Pure simple delight!
~ Make your very own Rosy Oatmeal bath ~
In a cloth or muslin bag wrap:
- 1 to 2 large handfuls of dried rose petals or rose buds (organic please!)
- 1 to 2 large handfuls of oatmeal
Toss the bundle in the tub and fill with the hottest water from your faucet. Let your bundle steep in the tub until the water is cool enough for bathing about 15 to 20 minutes depending on the heat of your water.
- 6 to 10 drops of rose geranium essential oil
- a handful of epsom salt, optional
Climb in and enjoy this super soothing, comforting bath! Be sure to squeeze and squish your bundle of roses and oatmeal to liberate the slippery, milky goodness from the oats. Use your bundle as a nice gentle scrub all over your body. I even put some on my face and let it remain there for a while to nourish my skin. Oh so simple and lovely...
After my bath ~
My skin was soft, so soft! I felt truly relaxed, nourished and ready for the rest of my day.
Who doesn't like a good foot massage? A nice rub is especially relaxing before bed. Massage oils and balms made with essential oils massaged into the bottom of feet at bedtime helps to induce sleep as well as fight infection.
Did You Know ~ Our bodies are able to absorb a phenomenal amount through the skin on the bottom of our feet. In fact an old remedy for coughs is to rub the bottom of the feet with olive oil, put minced garlic on top of the oil and then put socks over the whole thing. Within a very short amount of time the person's breath will smell of garlic! The garlic then helps to fight infection from the inside of the lungs out as the person breathes.
Creating Foot Balms With Kids ~
What is better than squishing and squeezing a bag of gooey goodness? This is just what we did recently at preschool. The kids each created their own sleepy time foot balm in a little baggie for mixing. Originally we were going to use tins to put the balms in but what fun is that?
- Shea Butter
- Coconut Oil (optional)
- Relaxing Essential Oils, Some Examples Are ~
Important Note: These essential oils are generally considered safe for kids from age 2 and up. If your child is very small and may get into the foot balm or otherwise misuse it, please store it up out of their reach when you are not in the room with them. Essential oils are not safe to use internally.
- Place a big spoonful (about a tablespoon) or two of the shea butter and coconut oil in a baggie.
- Let the children smell the essential oils and pick out a couple of their favorites that make them feel relaxed and sleepy.
- Add these essential oils to the shea butter/coconut oil blend. Because this is a really loose project with no exact measurement for the shea butter/coconut oil blend, I errored on the side of too little essential oil, to be safe, rather than risk using to much. So I used up to 6 drops of essential per baggie. This means that if the child choose lavender, cedarwood and ylang ylang for the essential oils, I put 2 drops of each oil in their baggie for a total of 6 drops. See Essential Oils for more information on using them herbal preparation safely.
- Seal the bag shut tight!
- Now for the fun part... Mixing it all up! It is the child's job to mix up all that goodness by squishing it around to their heart's content!
To Use ~
At bedtime rub a little bit of the balm on the bottoms of your child's feet. This is a great time to connect with a little massage and conversation or lullaby. Then cover your child's feet with socks. Off to slumber land they go!
Frustrated, angry muscles and nerves plagued me over the past few days leaving me all sore and aching. When I am sore I always try to fit in a nice hot soak in the tub. Even with just epsom salts and hot water, I usually feel so much better after soaking. This time I made my bath even more soothing with the following blend of salts and herbs ~ oatstraw to ease my nerves and rosemary for muscle soreness. It worked wonders!
Make Your Own ~
In a cloth or muslin bag wrap:
- 1/4 to 1/2 cup of dried rosemary leaf
- 1/2 cup oatstraw
Toss the bundle in the tub and fill with the hottest water from your faucet. Let the herbs steep in the tub until the water is cool enough for bathing about 15 to 30 minutes depending on the heat of your water. The water will turn a buttery light yellow.
- 1 to 2 cups Epsom salts
- 1/2 cup baking soda
- 5 drops ginger essential oil
- 5 drops rosemary essential oil
- 2 drops vetivert essential oil
My vetivert essential oil has turned into a thick syrup oil so I had to patiently wait for each drop to slowing make it's way out of the bottle but it was so worth it!
After this bath I felt relaxed, centered and less soreness. I took my bath quite hot and only stayed in for about 15 minutes, it was like soaking in an herbal hot springs. Then I got out and laid on the floor with my feet on the sill of an open window. I laid there breathing deep and relaxing. As my body cooled down the tension drained out of my muscles. I felt so calm and peaceful. My muscles and nerves are finally nourished, letting go of tension...
Mint in the tub enlivens the senses and restores the spirit so this is a wonderful bath for when you need a little happy boost!
Here is how to make your very own mint bath ~
In a cloth or muslin bag wrap:
- 1 to 2 large handfuls of dried peppermint leaves
- a good sprinkle of lavender blossoms
Toss the bundle in the tub and fill with the hottest water from your facuet. Let the herbs steep in the tub until the water is cool enough for bathing about 15 to 20 minutes depending on the heat of your water. The water will turn a deep greenish yellow brown, like a giant cup of peppermint tea.
- a handful of epsom salt
- 6 drops of spearmint(not peppermint*) essential oil
Climb in and enjoy this happy, refreshing bath!
After my bath ~
I felt calm as I always do after bathing yet I also had a sense of wanting to inhale the moment. The rest of the afternoon found me happily going about my business with peaceful energy. Plus my skin smelled sweet and nice, a bit minty, yum!
* A Note On Peppermint Essential Oil: Every time I try putting peppermint in my bath I get burned, even with just one drop! I start to feel an itchy uncomfortable sensation on my skin and must get out to rub down with olive oil, which dilutes the peppermint. People react differently to things and it is possible that I am sensitive to peppermint. Try peppermint essential oil in your bath, if you wish, but please start with one drop and go from there.