Although I've been relatively lax when it comes to doing anything witchcraft related, I decided the other night to do something simple in order to get my mind back to where it needs to be. I love making things with herbs, I think I've probably mentioned this in my blog a hundred times. I've a curiosity about banes, walking the poison path is part of my journey as a hedge witch and also feeds the nature of the green witch. I've started growing my own and hope in the future to be able to use only my own herbs for any baneful needs (except mandrake...did I mention my love/hate relationship with the most stubborn herb in the history of herbs?). My journey into the world of differing ointments has been something I've been doing for awhile but without any true commitment or testing. I made the decision to truly dedicate myself to this path and truly connect properly on a spiritual level with the banes that I have. This lead me to making singular ointments for some of the banes I have: Belladonna, Henbane, Datura and Mandrake, and also an ointment combining all four.
The Datura I wildcrafted near to my home, the Henbane I grew, however the Belladonna and Mandrake I had to outsource. I have a Belladonna plant now and plan to get/grow more, so hopefully the next time I create a test ointment it will be of my own plant material - leaves and berries, whereas the one I've created for my personal experimentation is all leaf material.
I'll heat them through infusing all of that baneful loveliness into the oil and try them. This should give me a good indication of their strength and whether or not more herb material needs to be added. I am hopeful I can get it right, this way the experience with the herbs will be profound and enlightening yet not dangerous. Perhaps one day I will sell ointments and salves with these herbs, however that'll be a long way off yet as I really would love to make them all with herbs from my own poison garden.
Okay, so I didn't write the next day but I thought about - points for that right? But I'm back! And that is the totality of my enthusiasm for this migraine causing hot weather we're experiencing right now. It's supposed to cool down again by the weekend - hope it rains.
Anyhoo, in a prior post I mentioned my intention for a tiny house herbal studio as my place of work and the place where my dreams of being a traditional style wisewoman would have a chance to grow. I love the idea of it, and I think it will work brilliantly for what I want. But I'm not the only one who loves the idea, it's becoming a bit of a revolution. The idea formulated in my head when I watched 'George Clarke's Amazing Spaces', there were people all over England using small spaces for living, for business purposes and all sorts. A woman on there decided to turn a horsebox into a vintage clothing shop that she could take around different fairs, festivals etc. It even had a little living space in it. It got me to thinking. It wasn't until I actually saw a the tiny house online (mentioned in my prior post) that the idea struck me. It would be the perfect thing to have to create my own working space. A space that could eventually become my shop, my workroom and my consulting room.
I can't wait to get started on mine, it's going to be an exciting project. It also made me wonder if it would be possible to create my own home. I have a block of land, it has no power or water but if I could make an entirely sustainable tiny house to live in, it would be amazing. It would be a long term project but I think it could definitely work. I've even found my dream one (here), it's a good size but I think I would definitely have to price it down to work in my buget - probably a hell of a lot less wood, I mean I like wood as a design accent but not as much as is in the tiny-ish house.
But for practical reasons, I think I would be better off having one on wheels, so that should I ever need to move, I can take my tiny house with me. Probably something like this or this or this. It's a dream I have, I don't think I'll ever have kids, I've never had the desire to, but should I meet my soulmate and we decide to procreate, I imagine it wouldn't be too hard to put together another tiny house. One for the living, one for the sleeping or you could build another one on a big semi trailer truck (yep I'm full of ideas).
I actually like the idea of living small like this because it negates the need for clutter. You would really only have around you that which is most important to you (in my case, epic amount of books). It's a very simple way of living, one I think I could easily adapt to. But first, I shall see how I go with my herbal studio, I'm very excited for it. It's going to be an adventure!!
I'm thinking of ways to try and throw myself back into blogging. I used to do so much of it back in the day, some months I would average 15 or more posts a month. Now I'm lucky if I manage two. I think it came from wanting to put a particular image out there because I thought it was necessary to. Expectations and all of that, I've let go of that now, I am who I am. Since my great realisation a few months ago, I still haven't kicked my witchy patooty into gear and really got on with it, although I have been doing more herbalism things because before long, hopefully, I should be able to launch myself more full time into creating herbal products.
I've been considering trying to post more regularly, just to get myself back into the swing of regular blogging. Whether it's just a picture of a plant in the garden, a poem, herb profiles, a tarot or oracle reading or a general post on my practice or what I've been up to, I'm going to try. I don't I'll relive my glory days of posting every day but I figure I'll think of things to do. I'm even going to try and blog more on my herbal blog and get back to my tarot blog of which I have not posted on lately. Since I'm going to try to be more well rounded, I really should make the effort. Starting tomorrow I will actively try and post more often. At least three times a week -maybe four. :)
I've decided to begin trying new recipes for when I eventually create my herbal store. I've had an Etsy store for it for a really (almost preposterously) long time. Now that my herbal studio dream will be realised, I'm motivating myself to hammer down the details and just have fun with herbs and herb crafting. Last night I thought I'd give a go a couple of recipes that had been on my mind. The madness had begun.
Whipped Body Butter
It smells delicious as it sounds! And surprisingly easy to make. The recipe I used was from one of my favourite herby sites Wellness Mama. I halved the recipe and still ended up with a rather sizeable batch of body butter. Because the coconut is cold pressed and not refined, the butter has a wonderful coconut scent.
Getting it all together
It's all melted together
The finished product.
The finished product is fantastic, I love it. It's a little hard to beat because it goes hard, so you may have to hold the bowl (carefully - this idiot managed to whack her fingers with the beaters) so it doesn't spin while you loosen it up. Or alternatively, as I am considering given I am the world's greatest klutz, you could use a bowl mixer instead.
Activated Charcoal & Clay Face Mask
I read about the benefits of activated charcoal and after perusing several different recipes, decided to massively simplify and use charcoal and clay with water in a face mask. I just did a couple of capsules with just under a teaspoon of clay, added a teaspoon of water and mixed it together. My skin felt fab when I washed it off but be warned, it does take a bit to clear the face of it. I used charcoal capsules from the chemist (and yes, I just realised that 'flatulence' is blazoned across the front of the bottle - photo fail Stacey), they're not exactly super cheap but it was convenient.
I've been trying out some new test tinctures to get a feel for different herbs, my newest victims were Chamomile Flower, Liquorice Root and Whole Echinacea plant. I've been doing a bit of research and came across an interesting idea on Wellness Mama of adding a bit of hot water to the herbs to loosen them up (dry herbs) before putting the alcohol on them. I thought I'd give it a try this time and see how it went, I figure it'll either work or it won't.
So there you have it, my Saturday night herbal adventures. This is just the tip of the madness iceberg. I have so many different recipes I want to try out - lip balms, herbal smokes, soaps (I'm going to do using a crockpot - should be interesting). I'm also going to be doing a Holistic Skincare Products course in order to broaden my knowledge base. I'm looking forward to it, the next few months should be a definite learning and experimenting time for me.