::right now::

Right now, I am…

:: celebrating my love’s graduation from midwifery school!

:: settling in to life in California – the fourth state the Apothecary has been in over the past year and a half.

:: excited about the Olympics (woohoo!) and the fact that they taking place during the season of Lughnasadh – a Celtic harvest festival involving games of skill and competitions in honor of the Goddess Tailtiu.

:: recognizing moments of pause and … pausing … in them.

:: loving the clever ones who support the Apothecary.  Get a sneak peak of just what an Apothecary package looks like at Daily Nuggets.

:: relishing escapes to magickal cabins in the Vermont woods.

puppy on his favorite chair complete with socks on the arm.

:: thinking about how it is that the Apothecary puppy has been with us for one whole year!  We rescued him down in Austin and he was gracious enough to welcome us into his pack.

:: wearing a hot pink headscarf with a turquoise and white accent scarf.  Bright colors are food for my soul (and a great way to pick me out of a crowd)!

:: jumping up and down seeing our Essences in Sword+Fern up in Portland, OR.  See our little essences here!

:: considering the possibility of designing an e-course and continuing the Clever Hedgehog School of Herbology in an online and in-person format.

:: hoping for more hot summer days here on the coast – I’ll send the cool weather to the midwest for a bit more warmth by the sea!

:: feeling joy every time I step out onto the potted garden porch that I’m currently cultivating.  It has lots of Basil in it of all sorts of varieties!

:: reading The Compleat Herbal by Ben Charles Harris which focuses on the wisdom of herbs through the Doctrine of Signatures.

:: listening to Eivør’s Trøllabundin on repeat.  Seriously magickal sounds…

:: laughing at toddlers who know how to work a room and tear up a dance floor.

:: enjoying fruit!  Fresh, local, organic California fruit!

:: smiling at Sage (Salvia officinalis) and all the ways we’ve been spending time together – making oils, infused-honeys, and sacred bundles.

:: readying myself for the upcoming harvest season – some of the most enchanted times of the year for me.

:: loving the continuing adventures of Basil making new friends at the park.  He likes to wrestle with a Aussie-doodle named Cody, play tag with an Irish Setter named Lola, and has a grey twin named Jameson who he is just getting to know.

:: singing Lucy Love’s We Are the Stars.

:: brewing batches of medicinal honeys, herbal oils, and more tea blends for wizards.

:: sending out lots of Traveling Tea Parties!

:: working on the Apothecary’s first ebook!  Morning Mischief: Enchanted Herbal Recipes for Delicious Awakenings + Resolute Magnificence! will be full of remedy recipes, inspiring instructionals, and be full of colorful pictures as well as our unique design aesthetic that keeps this Apothecary quirky.

:: grateful for long summer days with golden light and seaside breezes.

:: wanting more sweet watermelon picnics.

:: wishing everyone a beautiful golden summer!

How To Make Herbal Oils – Warm Infusion Folk Method

herbal oils worts and cunning apothecary

The infusion of herbs in an oil-based menstruum is a wonderful way of using herbs medicinally and can be a base for further medicine-making adventures including salves, lotions, and creams.  We’ll be using a warm infusion folk method of creating a herbal oil which more or less means that exact measurements are not used and we’re not looking for an exact herb-to-oil ratio (it is all very hang-loose in the Apothecary today!).  We’ll also be gently warming our oil as part of the infusion process, so it is important to set aside time that you’ll be able to be home and checking in on your herbal oil potion throughout the day.

Let’s start with the foundation of our Herbal Oil – the Oil Menstruum. (more…)

The Magical Herbs of Harry Potter : Pottermore Apothecary

Diagon Alley of Pottermore

You may have noticed that around the Apothecary, mundanity is taken on faith, while magic is all very real.  Continuing in our exploration of the magic of herbs (see our first post on the Magical Herbs of Harry Potter here), we now take a visit of Diagon Alley in the virtual world of Pottermore to peruse the shelves of the local apothecary.   In addition to Unicorn Hair and Horklump Juice you’ll find a few more familiar but just as mystical and powerful herbs such as Valerian Sprigs and Infusion of Wormwood.

So just what do these herbs do? (more…)

Craving Miracles: Finding the Truly Miraculous

“May I, can I, or have I too often?
Craving miracles…
May I, can I, or have I too often now?
Craving miracles,
Craving miracles…”
Thunderbolt by Bjork

In the overculture of the United States there is a big business of constructing, marketing, and administering magic pills that will cure us of our ills (if only to plague us with a long list of not-so-nice side effects).  I think that the quest for that magic pill promoted by profit-driven pharmaceutical framework takes advantage of a deeper craving held by many humyn creatures for the miraculous, the uncanny, the infusion of mundanity with mysticism.  As a herbologist and someone who works as a diplomat between humyn and plant cultures, I feel that part of my work is to facilitate the re-enchantment of the lives of those folks who have fallen out of rhythm with their own mystery.  When someone comes to me seeking a cure, miraculous or not, I begin the process of sharing with folks what I can offer by ways of the mysterious and not-so-mysterious, that finds common ground for us to work together.

In my practice, part of healing is (more…)