As I sit among the redwood trees and bask in their majestic presence, I am deeply saturated by not only the moisture the traps in their canopy, but also by all the essential oils exuded by their cells. If you have ever sat in an old growth redwood forest, you know the sensation I am talking about. The density of the air is palatable and there is a silence that pervades deep within.
I like to use the Douglas Fir instead of Redwood in this blend, as I have yet to see redwood essential oil on the market. Like all conifers, Fir is anti-infectious and decongestant, so it has the extra benefit of protecting you from illness.
Ingredients: 3 drops Douglas Fir essential oil
3 drops Pinon Pine essential oil
3 drops Frankincense essential oil
Put essential oils and 1-ounce spring water in a spritzer bottle.
Mist yourself as needed for meditation, concentration or focus. Or anytime your mood needs a little pick me up!
One of my favorite soups is to throw in any root and vegetable I can find- burdock, dandelion, turnip, carrot, radish, broccoli and throw it in with garlic, ginger, and scallion and as much water as will fill it all.
I let it cook down for hours, adding more scraps, salt, spices and water as I see fit. After satisfied with the extraction of all possible goodness from the plants, I strain off the herbs for composting and am left with the most delicious, medicinal broth imaginable.
I add some sautéed mushrooms and a little chickpea miso to the broth, make a grilled cheese sandwich and sit back and watch the blustery breeze outside. The broth is easy to freeze to be pulled out later for a base in casseroles and other dishes.
I know fall is here, mostly because people around me are starting to have that congested cough that often accompanies the onset of respiratory infections.
I hear it rattle in their throat and chest and while part of me wants to run the other way with my nose and mouth covered, the other part wants to stay and give them this recipe to help reduce the length of their illness.
To honor the Fall Equinox and to bring our yin yang into greater balance, I have created this blend that recognizes the dark and the light within us all.
The Essential Equinox Blend
2 ounces Calendula infused Olive Oil
4 drops St. John’s Wort essential oil (connects us to the Sun)
4 drops Artemisia alba essential oil (connects us to the Moon)
4 drops Vetiver essential oil (connects us to the Earth)
Add essential oils to the carrier oil and put them in a glass roll-on bottle.
Apply to your temples, forehead, chest or any area that feels right for you.
May this blend bring you into balance with yourself, the seasons and the universe
As always use organic and/or sustainably harvested herbs and oils.
Although Denver is still holding on the warmth of the summer, I was up in the mountains last weekend and the icy breeze of winter reminded me that autumn is quickly approaching.
Thursday, September 22 is the Autumn Equinox. The Equinox is marked by the 12 hours of darkness and 12 hours of light that occurs twice a year. During the equinox, it is a reminder of the intricate balance of yin-yang, the dynamic opposites that govern all existence according to Chinese philosophy. I love this time of year, when I see plants letting go of all the energy they absorbed from their leaves during the year and then effortlessly releasing it all back to the Earth. Watching their process makes me reflect on all I have taken on throughout the year and gives me an opportunity to let go of all that I don’t need to hold on to.
I love this time of year when I see plants letting go of all the energy they absorbed from their leaves during the year and then effortlessly releasing it all back to the earth. Watching their process makes me reflect on all I have taken on throughout the year and gives me an opportunity to let go of all that I don’t need to hold on to.
Some of my favorite plants are those that remind us to let go of what we no longer need. In the case of Hawthorn Berries, they literally break up fats that may lead to arteriosclerosis or sluggish digestion.
Citrus peels, especially grapefruit peel, is very mucolytic, which means it breaks down substances containing mucus. In Chinese medicine, mucolytic herbs break up what we call phlegm, qi and blood stagnation (which can manifest as lipomas, tumors, cysts) and can be helpful in both decreasing cellulite and acne. Respiratory disorders are rampant in autumn, with many suffering from a wet cough that tends to linger with the cold, wet weather. Perilla leaf is useful to stop coughing and dissolves the phlegm that causes the tight, stifling sensation in the chest that accompanies the cough.
What are your favorite herbs for helping you let go of what is holding you back from optimum health?
We are in the transition time between summer and autumn.
In Chinese medicine, the days between seasons are associated with the Earth element, reminding us to take this time to nourish and prepare ourselves for the season ahead. Autumn is associated with the Metal element and our body systems that include the Lungs and Large Intestine. These systems remind us to take a deep breath in, and upon your exhale, let it go. Nothing exemplifies this more than the paired organs of the lung and large intestine!
Autumn is usually a melancholic time for me, which is fitting since the emotion associated with the Metal element is grief. Part of grieving is an array of emotions that come before acceptance and forgiveness. Essential oils can help transition you from the depths of despair into a place of acceptance. The spicy flavor is also associated with the Metal element. Spicy herbs get our qi (life force) moving and can help get us out of any funk.
3 Essential Oils for Fall
1. Peppermint — not only great for digestion but also calms down an “angry” liver and helps move you from anger into acceptance. Diffuse this throughout your home or take in the form of peppermint spirits.
2. Thyme — one of our spiciest herbs and one of the best for preventing colds and flus; I also find thyme to be helpful in situations that take time to heal. For grief, I like to diffuse thyme with lavender and rosemary to help me remember the good times and move past the bad.
3. Clary Sage — known as a euphoric and helpful for menopausal symptoms, clary sage also aids us in gaining clarity and insight and lifting the clouds that surround us when we are in grief. I like to make a roll-on with a carrier oil and essential oils of clary sage, angelica, vetiver, and jasmine absolute when I feel sad from a significant loss.
Let me know your favorite spicy herbs and essential oils for fall!