How to Make Rose Elixir

roseelixir
“It was June, and the world smelled of roses. The sunshine was like powdered gold over the grassy hillside.”
― Maud Hart Lovelace

Rose elixir can be likened to a love potion. It is a type of rescue remedy, for the achy breaky heart and beyond. It calms and soothes nerves, acts as a healing tonic at the onset of illness, and opens your heart center during times of un ease.

There are many tutorials on making rose elixir this is how I did it and I had great tasting and healing results!

What you need:

Whiskey – quality baby (you may also use brandy or vodka) I used whiskey because I had it on hand and I like the flavor profile. You will need enough to fill the vessel you choose. It’s a cold day in you know where when I have to do precise measurements with my potions.

Roses petals wild or organic– Be certain they haven’t been sprayed with pesticides. Use any variety of color and type that suits your fancy. You will need enough to fill your jar loosely they do not need to be packed down

Fresh Ginger optional this adds a slight heat to the elixir

Raw Organic Honey

How To:

Fill a glass vessel (think jam jar ) with the fresh succulent rose petals, any color any variety is superb just be certain they have not been chemically treated in any way.

Add the raw honey and gently stir to coat the petals. Don’t be a perfectionist just get that sweetness incorporated. Use about a 1/4 – 1/2 cup depending on the size of your jar.

The honey ratio should be a bout 1/4 of the recipe. If adding ginger peel slice and slip a few pieces in.

Finally pour your alcohol (Makers Mark in my case) over the top, filling your jar to the brim. Seal tightly.

Allow to marinate in a cool, dry, dark, place for up to six weeks, no less than 4 weeks.

Shake it up a bit every day.

Once the soaking time is up transfer to the container you will be using for this elixir. I used a dark brown glass bottle with a dropper.

Once your love potion has been toiled and troubled it can be used for a variety of ailments from skin wounds to the soul.

For the full spectrum of uses and the original recipe go here.

I added a wee bit of ginger to my mixture because the constitutions in this house tend to benefit from a little heat as well as the cooling effect of roses.

Most recipes for rose elixir call for brandy or vodka. I used whiskey. In other variations I researched this was a viable option and it was the alcohol on hand. I’m all for ease in any situation even witchery and love potion creation.

This remedy can be taken to open hearts metaphysically as well as substantially calming the nerves.

Here in this household we are experiencing great transformations and I know we will do nothing but benefit from having a calming, centering, heart opening, love potion in our  witch doctor kit.

Also it is reported to also be of use  as an aphrodisiac and I’m looking forward to testing that theory. I myself tend be a bit frosty and airy and welcome the thought of a warming concoction to bring a little heat to matters of the heart.

Dosage: Just few drops should suffice to calm the nerves and heal the heart if attempting to thwart a cold a teaspoon every few hours has proven incredibly beneficial.

The petals and ginger can be left in the potion as it is used or the two can be strained and separated. If you separate don’t let those petals go to waste devour with  a lover alone, on cake or in a cocktail.

Even more health benefits from roses here.

À la vôtre

 

Most days Kiki can be found seeking elevated states of being through better food.  A certified kitchen witch since the age of seven, Kiki is always continuing her education in blissful states of consumption.  She is certified in Raw Nutrition by illustrious Raw trailblazer David Wolfe through the BodyMind Institute, where she continues her training.  Find her at www.ohhaikiki.com as she relaunches her personal blog this spring!

10 Ways To Make Yoga More Than A Resolution

yoga

10 Ways to Make Yoga More Than A Resolution

Whether you are new to yoga or are looking to restart your practice there are some things to remember so as to avoid overwhelm.

10. Start with a five minute practice if you don’t have much time or start with a home practice if you can’t get to a studio.  Don’t let the inability to get to a group class keep you from experiencing the benefits of a practice.

9. Classes are always crowded at the beginning of the year.  If you tried going to classes for the first time in January or February and they were packed, know that by now things have calmed down a bit.

8.  Don’t let the new and crazy sounding words scare you.  Your teacher will show you what they are asking you to do and if you feel lost give it a couple of chances rather than just giving up right away.  If you feel lost after a couple of classes find a new class and a teacher that makes you feel comfortable.

7. Don’t feel like you need all of the “gear”.  You don’t need a special mat, expensive clothes or yoga socks.  You don’t actually even need a mat to get started.

6. Go to the appropriate yoga class and practice the right kind of yoga for your body.  If you have not moved your body in so long that you wore leg warmers the last time you went to a class then don’t start with an advanced Vinyasa class.  Find a Gentle or Beginner’s class and give yourself permission to start slowly.

5. Know that it is ok to not be able to do every single pose that is taught.  Go with the flow and do what you can.  There is a reason it is called a yoga “practice”.  It takes time and work.

4. Try not to compare yourself to your neighbor.  Your teacher may say that to you and you might laugh to yourself and think ”right…” but really don’t do it.  Yoga is not about comparing so stop doing it and enjoy your practice more by just being in the moment.

3. Remember to laugh a little (or even a lot).  Yoga makes us feel joyous and laughter is just another expression of joy. A yoga class doesn’t have to be serious and stuffy.

2. Take care of yourself after class.  Drink water, eat healthy foods and get some rest.

1.  Start where you are.  Forgot needing to be flexible and just go to a yoga class!

Emily Loupe is a yoga teacher, yoga therapist, massage therapist and much more.  She has a passion for wellness and helping people use the practices of yoga to create health, wellbeing and happiness.  She teaches and runs a teacher training program in Austin, Texas called Elemental Yoga School.  Elemental Yoga School will be offering online yoga programs in 2014.  Find out more at http://www.elementalyoga.org

Honoring Your Family’s Natural Rhythms

I found out the hard way that I was the destroyer of my family peace.

Disruption of circadian rhythms has been linked to such problems as diabetes, depression, dementia and obesity, says Steve Kay, a professor of molecular and computational biology at the University of Southern California. *source The Wall Street Journal

cycles

image source: National Institute of General Medical Sciences

Having never considered myself an A-type push, push, push personality it was a rude awakening the day I realized I was pushing my loved ones past their natural limits in an effort to achieve.

It started with a three alarm meltdown from my daughter, then just three years old.

I had done away with the nap in an effort to “keep up” with my peers that were swearing by a no nap/ earlier bedtime for their kids. These peers had convinced  me that this new arrangement would allow me may hours in the evening to do my work and thus be more productive.

Now here we were at her group playtime at the YMCA losing our collective minds.

The meltdown was so severe I did not even know how to handle it.

I just let it roll out, tears, full volume screams, sideways glances and sneering comments about seeking a child psychologist from the adults that run the playgroup etc.

It was a terrible, heartbreaking moment.

After the dust settled I knew it was sleep related.

My daughter is prone to big emotions and big outbursts but, this was different.

I had rearranged her biological clock to fit my needs not her natural rhythms. We all ebb and flow to a deeply centered biological clock that receives its data from mother earth and the surrounding universe.

Basically, I messed with God’s plan and my child suffered.

Now before you go telling me it’s all a learning process and not to be so hard on myself. I know that. I got it. I just want to illustrate how our ingrained programming to go, go, go forth and be productive can come at a price.

The price of happiness lost.

Happiness is not a matter of intensity but of balance, order, rhythm and harmony -Thomas Merton

After this sobering event I realized I had pushed this glorification of busy on myself and my husband.

I recalled the days I had huffed and puffed about the house resentful of my husband resting on the couch. He seemed to always need a daily siesta and it bothered my undercover overachiever demon. I used to make him feel guilty for needing a nap when in fact the truth was the whole family should have been taking a natural quiet time each afternoon as our bodies were calling for it.

I saw clearly how I pushed us all  through times of feeling weak aka tired or depleted.

And clearly now I could see how this wasn’t amping up our productivity at all. It was just making us resentful, tired and downright crabby.

So, wheres the happy ending?

I realized that when it’s time to rest it’s time to rest.

The entire family now enjoys a blissful interlude mid day. And what do you know an earlier bed time is still part of the package. Because I allow her to recharge mid day my daughter isn’t filled with frenetic energy at bed time.

The moral – never be afraid to admit you are wrong.

Here are a few ways you can honor your own families natural rhythms.

The goal of life is to make your heartbeat match the beat of the universe, to match your nature with Nature. – Joseph Campbell

1 Know your tribe.

Don’t be blind to your family’s specific needs. We are not cookie cutter humans. We all tune into the universal rhythms but we all also have different internal clocks. Some people are natural night owls Other people have medical conditions that override their biological clocks. My husband for example has low thyroid activity thus rendering him tired and depleted more often than others. Know your people and honor their differences schedule your events accordingly. Do not make family members feel guilty for their natural physical reactions to different parts of the day.

2 Work with your natural environment.

When the sun goes down turn your screens off. This is crucial. I know that a lot of us work at a computer and a lot of us do this at night while our family sleeps. I get that. But, as often as you can honor the universe and its endless cycles of day to night, When the sun goes down reduce exposure to artificial light so that bodies can continue on their natural cycles.

3 Be willing to always be working and reworking what works.

Only you will know or observe what is working and what isn’t. Like a good editor always be revising for optimal results. Also be willing to challenge the current constructs you are working within such as  school or work schedules. Be willing to challenge these things and see if you can find some give or leeway.

4 Think like a scientist.

Observe the earth, moon, sun, stars, tides, seasons etc. Notice how this system is already perfect. Learn what you can take from natural systems to implement in your family.

 

As with everything holistic keep an open mind and be willing to implement new things.

Tell us in comments or at the Facebook page how you honor your natural rhythms.

 

Kiki Harshman

On most days Kiki can be found seeking elevated states of being through better food.  A certified kitchen witch since the age of seven, Kiki is always continuing her education in blissful states of consumption. She is certified in Raw Nutrition by Raw Food trailblazer David Wolfe through the BodyMind Institute, where she continues her training. She has also completed an introduction to herbalism course through the Herbal Academy of New England. Currently taking a break from personal blogging, her curriculum vitae is available at her About.Me page.

Making The Commitment To Healthy Living In 2014

Healthy Living 2014

Guest post by Greg Denning, a holistic dad of almost six kids, from DiscoverShareInspire.com and GregDenning.com  Sign up for his FREE 90 min audio Purpose, Potential, and Peak Performance.

It’s a new and wonderful year.

What a great opportunity to re-commit to healthy living and a holistic and FANTASTIC life.

Unfortunately, or perhaps fortunately, it’s not always easy to make the best choice in the moment.  That requires us to develop our discipline.

Sadly, too many of us give up what we want most for what we want at the moment. That’s why a new year and a new beginning is a great opportunity to raise the bar and reach upward toward total holistic living.

I’ve lived an incredible life; from homelessness to pure awesomeness.  And the most difficult times led me to the most important and long lasting decisions.  Holistic living being one of the most important. Listen to my story….

Click to listen. Right click to save MP3.

For more inspiration and motivation, visit www.GregDenning.com

5 Ways To Stay Happy And Healthy In 2014

2014 healthy living tips

Click here to download this FREE printable!

This time of year is always buzzing with excited and hopeful energy, people all over the world planning the year ahead. Setting goals. Dreaming big. Wondering what 2014 will bring.

Whatever your goals and dreams are for this year, here are some tips to ensure it’s happy and healthy.

1. Be Present.

“Realize deeply that the present moment is all you have. Make the NOW the primary focus of your life.” ~ Eckhart Tolle

Make mindfulness a habit by bringing yourself back to the present moment whenever you notice yourself getting lost in thought. This is especially important if you often re-play the past or spend too much time future-tripping.

The key here is awareness. Once you realise you’re stuck in your head, turn your awareness to your body. Focus on your breathing. Listen to the sounds around you. Feel your back against the chair or your feet on the ground.

A great way to train your mind to stay present is to meditate. Even ten minutes a day will make a difference. Light a candle and gaze at the flame. Go outside and let nature guide you towards a more peaceful state. Listen to a meditation recording or go to a class.

By giving yourself over to the now, you’ll feel more relaxed and joy will come to you with more ease.

2. Laugh.

“At the height of laughter, the universe is flung into a kaleidoscope of new possibilities.” ~ Jean Houston

We’ve all heard the saying, ‘laughter is the best medicine.’ It’s uplifting and fun, it brings people together and lightens your mood. Not only that, it’s an amazing happiness booster and even reduces stress.

Make it a goal to laugh every day in 2014. Watch your favorite funny movies and tv shows {The Big Bang Theory and Seinfeld are my go-to laugh inducers!}. Read funny books. Make time to hang out with people who make you laugh or try Laughter Yoga.

A good giggle can transform even the darkest of days.

3. Nourish Your Body.

“Let food be thy medicine, thy medicine shall be thy food.” ~ Hippocrates

Choose foods that make your body glow from the inside out. Every body is different when it comes to finding which foods keep us at optimum health; vegan, paleo, gluten free, the list goes on. If you’ve found the foods that nourish you, great! Keep it up.

If not, find the foods that make you feel good and healthy. If you need help, find a nutritionist or health coach and work together to find what works for you.

4. Move Your Butt.

“The higher your energy level, the more efficient your body. The more efficient your body, the better you feel and the more you will use your talent to produce outstanding results.” ~ Anthony Robbins

Exercise is brilliant for a whole mind, body, spirit boost. How our body feels determines every other area of our lives, so it’s vital to get our bodies moving regularly.

Again, it’s about finding what works best for you. It could be yoga, marathon running, going to the gym, swimming, dancing, even hula hooping or trampolining.

If you don’t exercise as much as you’d like and want to feel fitter and stronger in 2014 {like me!}, set a goal and stick to it no matter what. Start small if you need to, even taking your dog for a walk every day is enough. Keep building on your fitness routine as you go along; jump rope after your walk or jump on an exercise bike for 30 mins every day.

The more you move your body, the better you’ll feel.

5. Do What You Love.

“Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma — which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of others’ opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.” ~ Steve Jobs

It doesn’t matter what it is. Whether it’s knitting, writing, painting, gardening, playing guitar, hiking, cooking, dancing, volunteering… if you love it, do it! And do it as often as possible.

Forget about what other people think; do what makes you happy. Working on our passions can be as calming as meditation and is guaranteed to make you feel joyful, fulfilled and alive.

If you haven’t found what you love to do yet, keep looking. Here’s a clue; when you do it, you’ll get lost in it, it will electrify you and you’ll lose track of time because you’re having so much damn fun!

And if you’re worried it’s too selfish to do what makes you happy, take a look at my all-time favorite quote:

“Ask what makes you come alive and do it. Because what the world needs are people who have come alive.” — Howard Thurman

I hope this post has inspired you to make 2014 your happiest and healthiest year ever. If you want a reminder of these 5 happiness boosters, I made a free printable for you to do just that! Check it out here!

jenbiopic (1)Jen Saunders is the creator of Wild Sister Magazine and the Wild Sisterhood. She’s a tie-dye wearing, coffee guzzling writer, artist + self love advocate who fiercely believes that empowering women will change the world. A former city girl living by the sea with her husband, when she’s not creating the next edition, blog post or ecourse, Jen loves movie marathons, writing fiction and instagramming ridiculously cute photos of her pug.

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Top Ten Daily Uses for Essential Oils with a Giveaway!!

 

Today’s guest post comes from Stephanie Doyle at  My Chemical Breakup!

 

In our hectic world, taking the necessary time to center and nourish your body, mind and spirit is so important.  Essential oils are an excellent way to give your body exactly what it needs to find physical, mental and spiritual balance and wellbeing.  Here are ten easy ways to incorporate the healing benefits of essential oils into your daily routine.

  1. Wake up energized with citrus and mint.

I like to alternate between Lemon, Lime and Wild Orange essential oils in the morning along with invigorating Peppermint.  Put one drop of each into the palm of your hand, cup your hand near your nose and mouth and inhale deeply for instant energy and focus.  As a bonus, rub the remainder onto the bottoms of your feet (this is one of the best places to absorb essential oils quickly) and start your day feeling positive and energized!

 

  1. Nourish your hair with Rosemary.

One or two drops of Rosemary essential oil, massaged into the scalp before a bath or shower will do wonders for your hair.  (Shampoo as normal after massage.)  Rosemary is very balancing, so it can be helpful for both dry and greasy hair; and it’s also a great oil for stimulating hair growth.   If you have problems with itchy scalp or dandruff, add a drop of lavender in addition to the Rosemary.  You can also add 1 or 2 drops of Rosemary and Peppermint to unscented shampoo for a clean, invigorating hair cleansing experience!

 

  1. Boost oral health with Peppermint and Clove.

Both Clove and Peppermint essential oils are analgesic, antibacterial, antiseptic, antiviral, and anti-inflammatory.  Peppermint oil mixed with water makes a great natural mouthwash.  If it’s too “hot”, cut it with a drop or two of Lemon.  Have a toothache?  A drop of Clove essential oil applied to the affected area will numb the pain while fighting germs.  (Note:  If you are sensitive to hot oils, dilute with a carrier oil before applying to the mouth.)

 

  1. Support body and mind with Frankincense.

Frankincense, by far, is my very favorite essential oil.  (Although there are many close seconds.)  Many people, myself included, find that Frankincense helps to stabilize moods as well as calm anxiety and nerves.  This is not surprising, since Frankincense is one of the few oils that can pass the blood brain barrier and is therefore often recommended for issues dealing with the brain.  It’s also a great immune system booster as well as an incredible anti-inflammatory.  Basically, Frankincense is good for just about everything.  It’s great on cuts and scrapes, skin conditions, digestive issues, it’s an anti-depressant, anticatarrhal, anti-cancer, anti-tumor, expectorant and sedative, just to name a few.  One to two drops on the bottoms of the feet would be beneficial any time of day, and a great addition to morning or nightly routines.

 

  1. Clean and freshen with Lemon.

Toss a washcloth with 2 or 3 drops of Lemon essential oil in with your laundry for super clean clothes and uplifting scent.  This is also a great way to freshen up a load that, ahem, you may have let sit a bit too long in the washing machine.  (Not that you or I would ever do that.)  Lemon is a natural antiseptic, so it can also be used to wipe down counters or even stainless steel.  For counters, add a few drops of Lemon to a glass spray bottle with water.  For the stainless steel, apply a drop of Lemon directly to a microfiber cloth and buff to a shine.  (Note: be sure to use a glass spray bottle when using citrus oils, never plastic, as Lemon dissolves petrochemicals.)  Lemon is also known as antidepressant, so while you clean you’ll be giving your mood a boost as well!

 

  1. Improve your outlook with uplifting Bergamot.

Apply one or two drops of Bergamot essential oil to the back of the neck, over the heart, or on the bottoms of the feet to increase self-confidence and combat negative emotions.    Bergamot may also be helpful in dealing with stress, anxiety and nervous tension, making this an excellent oil to diffuse as well.  (Note: as with all citrus oils, do not apply on areas that will be exposed to sunlight for up to 72 hours after use.)

 

  1. Find your focus with Peppermint and Wild Orange.

2 or 3 drops of Peppermint and Wild orange essential oils make an amazing, energizing blend for diffusion.  Not only will this blend help you get through an afternoon slump, but it can help improve focus and concentration as well.  If you don’t have a diffuser, add a few drops to a small spray bottle with some water and use as a natural room freshener.  You can also place a few drops on a cotton ball and set it behind a desktop fan to help circulate the therapeutic aroma throughout a room.

 

  1. Keep headaches at bay with Peppermint.

Peppermint is one of those oils that has so many different uses!  A tiny drop on the temples or back of the neck and help relieve headaches and can prevent little headaches from turning into giant ones. (Be sure to keep well away from eyes!) Peppermint is also very soothing to the digestive system; a drop applied topically to the stomach does wonders for both indigestion and nausea.

 

  1. Wind down with Lavender and Roman Chamomile

Add 1 or 2 drops of each to a half cup of Epsom salts for a soothing, calming bath.  If you don’t have time for a bath, add 2 drops of lavender and 1 drop of roman chamomile to 10 or more drops of carrier oil (I prefer fractionated coconut oil) and massage over feet, neck and shoulders to help tension melt away.

 

  1. Encourage restful sleep with Lavender, Marjoram, and Vetiver.

Lavender oil on its own is can be very effective for encouraging sleep and relaxation.  Massage a few drops onto your neck, feet, or even around the ears just before bed; or add some Lavender to a small spray bottle with water for a relaxing pillow spray.  If you are still having trouble sleeping, try adding equal parts Marjoram or Vetiver.  Marjoram can help relax muscles and may also help with anxiety that may be keeping you awake.  Vetiver is a deeply relaxing oil, and while it does smell a bit pungent, it is extremely effective for those who have trouble falling or staying asleep at night.  To tone down the smell, you can add a few drops of lavender.  This oil is best used on the bottoms of the feet or (if you don’t mind the scent) the back of the neck.

 Source:

Modern Essentials Fourth Edition, Aroma Tools

You can learn more about Essential Oils by contacting Stephanie on her blog, on her facebook page. or her DoTerra consultant link.

 

And now for the Give Away – Don’t forget to come back every day and share the post on Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and even your blog!  Just copy and paste the URL of the location you shared it and enter it in the first box for a quick 10 points!

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Activism for Kids: Tiny Revolutionary

My wife and I have been looking for clothes for Kaya that have a message, not some sort of popular brand that people copy. We are Vedantists, and seva ( selfless service) and activism are important to us. We found a blog with an advertisement from Tiny Revolutionary, a clothing store based in the US which has children’s clothing with meaning.

Printed on organic cotton, shirts convey messages such as ‘be kind to small things’ and recycle, and come in a range of sizes ( from rompers to adult).

We will let you know when our shirt for Kaya arrives! We can’t wait!