Seasonal

Aromatherapy Monster Repellent!

Are your kids afraid of the boogieman, ghosts or monsters during this Halloween time of celebrations, haunted houses, scary costumes and horror movies?

AromaWeb's delightful Monster Repellent Recipe couldn't be easier to make (1 ingredient!) and leads to a soothing and softly aromatic room mist that your child can use to repel monsters, the boogie man and any other scary creature lurking in his/her mind, underneath the bed, in that dark closet or in the cold, creepy basement. Of course, I'm not suggesting that there really are monsters (remember this is all in fun!), but this spray may potentially help give your child control over these scary creatures in their minds. It may also gently help to combat your child's fears and anxieties and help sooth him/her to sleep. It's gentle aroma may also help to calm adult anxieties and fears.

I enjoy dusting this blog post off and re-sharing it each year, in fun, around Halloween. It was originally inspired by a delightful question submitted by a visitor to AromaWeb. Do you have a recipe request? Be sure to let me know.

Click Here to View the Recipe...


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Aromatherapy and Essential Oils to Reflect and Remember 9/11

Aromatherapy and Essential Oil on 9/11 AnniversaryWhile the anniversary of 9/11 joins us together, it also is a day that can impact each one of us differently. I can't even begin to imagine the intense and overwhelming range of emotions that survivors, families/friends of victims are experiencing. My heart and prayers go out to everyone that is directly affected by 9/11.


9/11 Remembrance Blend

The following blend can be diffused as you reflect on the day. The choice of citrus oils are intended to uplift the spirits. The inclusion of Rose Essential Oil/Otto in this blend is intended to help aid grief and bring comfort. I've included Patchouli as it is grounding and is a more commonly available oil. It's earthiness also helps to make this a blend that both men and women can benefit from. Sandalwood Essential Oil, Vetiver Essential Oil, Frankincense Essential Oil or Spikenard Essential Oil can be used in place of Patchouli Essential Oil. If using Spikenard, you may want to reduce the number of drops used to 1-3.

Combine all oils in a clean glass bottle and diffuse as you would other essential oil blends as you reflect, pray or meditate.


For more information on meditating/reflecting or praying with essential oils, view the following articles:


Other Blends For Coping With Grief and Supporting Emotional Well-Being

These blends may also helpful:

o Anger Reducing Blends

o Depression Reducing Blends

o Fear Fighting Blends

o Fear Fighting Blends

o Grief Reducing Blends

o Insomnia/Sleeplessness Blend

o Loneliness Easing Blends

o Panic and Panic Attack Blends

o Stress Reducing Blends


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Essential Oils for Fall & Autumn

Cinnamon, Anise, Nutmeg and CloveAs Autumn brings forth its cooler temperatures and richly colored falling leaves, it's a perfect time to enjoy diffusing and blending with warming essential oils like ginger, cardamom, cinnamon and clove.

I've just published a new article on AromaWeb entitled Essential Oils for Fall & Autumn. It lists a collection of warming, spicy, resinous and woody essential oils and absolutes perfectly suited for this beautiful time of year. The article also offers tips on blending with spicier oils and includes a few example blends. If time permits, I soon hope to add a larger selection of Autumn and seasonal diffuser blends to AromaWeb's Recipe Box area.

Click Here to Read Essential Oils for Fall & Autumn on AromaWeb


Aromatherapy Insect Repellent Recipe

Natural Insect Repellent Ingredients
The essential oils distilled from natural botanicals like citronella, lavender and eucalyptus act as natural insect repellents.

I love spending time outdoors, especially in the warmer months, but mosquitoes and other flying/biting insects can ruin the best of outdoor occasions. Synthetic insect repellents are known to cause irritation and sensitivity in some people, are toxic and can be harmful to the environment.

AromaWeb features a more gentle insect repellent recipe that only requires a few reasonably priced essential oils and other ingredients. It has a pleasant aroma, and can be quite effective in keeping the little itchy critters away.

Click here to read the rest of this article and to view the Insect Repellent Recipe on AromaWeb....


Growing and Enjoying Peppermint, Spearmint and Other Mint Plants

Peppermint growing against my garage.
Peppermint growing against my garage.  
The middle of June is finally here, and with that, the 25 herb varities that I'm growing this year are beginning to thrive. As an aside, I'm even trying my hand at growing patchouli this year here in Michigan... we'll see how I do. The patchouli plant that I special ordered arrived in weak condition and I'm hoping I can nurture it back to abundant health.

Amongst the herbs I grow each year are mint varieties including traditional peppermint and spearmint. Mint grows abundantly, and one small plant can provide plenty of mint leaves that can be enjoyed fresh throughout the warmer months and dehydrated for wintertime use. Mint plants should be planted where it will not become a nuisance or infringe upon other plants. The mints grow well in containers, and container planting is a practical way to keep their growth under control. I used to do that, but now plant my mint varieties alongside my garage so that I have enough for the mint tea that I enjoy throughout the summer and fall (see below).


Uses for Mint Leaves

There are countless ways that you can enjoy using mint for herbal, aromatherapy and culinary use. Below are a few of my favorites:

Tea:
I love brewing fresh mint tea on early summer mornings. It's light, energizing, uplifting and is great for the digestion. To make tea using fresh mint or other herbs, select and wash about 3x as much fresh herb as you would dried herb (the flavor of dried herbs/teas is much more concentrated and hence, less dried is needed than fresh). Tear fresh mint leaves into small pieces. Tearing the mint leaves allows the mint's natural essential oils to be released. It's the mint's essential oil that is responsible for the plants' distinctive cool, fresh flavor and aroma. Place the torn leaves into empty tea bags or into tea strainers intended for use with loose teas, and place the teabag or strainer into your mug. Then, pour your water over the leaves and allow the leaves to infuse the water for several minutes.


Smoothies or Juice:
If you make fresh vegetable or fruit juices or smoothies, experiment by adding a mint leaf or two.


Garnish:
Garnish ice cream, deserts and your other creations with the striking green leaves.


Mint Herbal Tincture:
Make refreshing room mists, linen and body sprays using your own handmade mint herbal tincture. For more information on making your own herbal tinctures, read AromaTalk's Herbal Tinctures post.


Dehydration:
I grow a lot of herbs for their culinary, medicinal/therapeutic and for the pleasure of seeing them thrive. Dehydrating your herbs is a great way to be able to enjoy abundant herbs during the winter months. There is no comparison between the dried herbs that you buy in tiny (or bulk!) bottles at the store vs. the more intense flavor and aroma of the herbs that you properly dry yourself. I use an Excalibur brand dehydrator that I've had for years because of its design, durability and its adjustable temperature setting that allows slow, even drying of delicate herbs.

Once dried, your mint leaves can be used in your own skin care creations including soaps, exfoliants, and facial masks.


Did You Know?

Catnip is in the mint family. In the UK, my understanding is that it is referred to as Catmint. Cat lovers can grow fresh catnip for their feline friends. My daughter's cat loves it. But be wary, newly planted catnip can be attacked by roaming neighborhood cats, so do try to keep them out of their reach until the plant(s) begin to thrive. How? I'm still trying to figure that one out. ;)


Bringing in the New Year With Aromatherapy

PlannerAnother New Year's Eve has arrived! In addition to the methods we each use to celebrate and bring in the new year, today is a time that many of us reflect upon the past year and think about our plans and expectations for the year up ahead. It's a time where many of us set personal goals by making ambitious resolutions like improving our fitness, nutrition, spirituality or personal relationships.

LimesLime Essential Oil is a beautiful choice for inclusion in room fragrancing/meditation blends for the New Year. Lime essential oil is one of the most affordable of oils and is routinely used for its energizing, fresh and cheerful aroma. Lime essential oil is also well known in folklore for its ability to cleanse, purify and renew the spirit and the mind.

Blends #1 and #4 on AromaWeb's Aromatherapy Diffuser Blends page include lime essential oil. AromaWeb's Air Freshener Recipe converts one of the lime diffuser blends into a beautiful room mist that you may customize using other essential oils.

During quiet moments on New Year's Day, I will be diffusing a blend of about 5 parts Patchouli Essential Oil, 4 parts Lime Essential Oil and 1 part Ylang Ylang Essential Oil in a candle diffuser. Patchouli is deep, rich and grounding, and the ylang ylang lends an exotic, sweet floral touch. Patchouli and Lime are a wonderful combination on their own as well.

Lime essential oil is strong, and a little goes a long way in diffuser and room fragrancing applications. I use it in small dilutions when making soap, but I tend to avoid it in other skin care applications as it can be irritating to the skin.

Daily AromatherapyA thought provoking book that will joyfully help you bring in the New Year is Daily Aromatherapy: Transforming the Seasons of Your Life with Essential Oils by Joni Keim and Ruah Bull. This book can be started at any time of the year, but Daily Aromatherapy is a must-have book for anyone that wishes to begin a New Year's journey of reflection and discovery using essential oils. View AromaWeb's detailed description of the book.