Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Easing Holiday Stress

As The holiday season progresses we all get the feeling we can't get enough done. Last minute guests, gifts, and invitations plus people calling off work, or having to work over all play havoc on the delecate balance we juggle every day. Below is an anti anxiety defusing blend you can use any time.

Anxiety Defusing Blend

15 drops clary sage EO
10 drops bergamot EO
10 drops geranium EO
8 drops chamomile EO
8 drops marjoram EO
5 drops ylang ylang EO

Drop the essential oils into a small glass bottle and gently turn the bottle upside down a few times or roll it between your hands to blend. Add some of the mixture to your diffuser or lamp bowl. Run your diffuser or lamp as necessary to prevent or reduce anxiety.

Someone sick?

For those who have cold sufferes in their families here is a quick last minute gift that will take about 15 minutes to make, having the entire project done and ready to wrap, in less than 1 hour.

Chest and cough Vapo Rub

2 T. cocoa butter solid
10 - 15 drops cedarwood, clary sage, eucalyptus, ginger, myrrh, pine, tea tree essential oils (your choice.... or you can use a combination of any of these oils)

Melt the cocoa butter solid in a microwave proof small bowl on low heat, Stir every 30 seconds to facilitate melting. Add your essential oils and stir well. While this is still in liquid form, pour into a dark, sterilized glass jar with a tight-fitting lid. Store in a cool, dry place till needed.

And a Cough Drop you can use your bulk herbs or a store bought tea with

Herbal Cough Drops

2 c. turbinado sugar
1 c. strong herbal tea
3/4 c. light corn syrup
1/4 t essential oils

Making the tea:
These cough drops are a way to use some of the herbs you have grown or that you find growing near you. I go out and collect everything that is abundant and have properties that are good for cough drops (expectorant, anti-microbial, mucilaginous). Some herbs I have used are elecampane, thyme, sage, Echinacea, marshmallow, angelica, elder flowers, mullein and comfrey.

Collect everything and throw all the roots in a pot and simmer these for about 30 minutes then throw in the leafy herbs and simmer some more. I start with about 1 quart of water. After the herbs have simmered for 10 minutes or so I cool it down and strain out the herbs then put the tea back on the stove and simmer until the volume of liquid is reduced to 1 cup.

When the tea is finished, combine it with the sugar and corn syrup in a saucepan. Cook, stirring constantly until the sugar is dissolved then lower heat and cook without stirring until the temperature reaches 300 degree. This takes a long time! When the mixture reaches 300 degrees remove it from the heat and stir in your essential oils. I used peppermint and eucalyptus. Most of the oil evaporates quickly so I add the oil, stir briefly then pour the syrup onto a baking sheet.

The syrup immediately begins to harden. As soon as I can touch it and pull up the edges I start cutting strips and snipping them into little pieces. You have to work fast. I got behind on one batch and had to put chunks in a bag and crack them into pieces.

Notes: These turn out a lot like the ricola cough drops. If you don't have fresh herbs I'm sure you could substitute dried herbs but I haven't tried out proportions yet. You can also add horehound

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