Lemon and Rosemary Cleansing

Happy New Year Friends! It’s time to wash away that which doesn’t serve us and prepare for the new gifts coming into our lives.

I’m a big fan of taking advantage of what we have locally to work our magics so it’s an absolute no brainer to grab those lemons and trim back the rosemary when it’s time to clean house. Lemon has long been associated with purification and it’s so easy to understand why. The scent is fresh and powerful and the juice is strong and acidic. Rosemary is well know as a protective and purification herb. I’ll be honest, the reason I use it in this and many other applications is because I have so much! About seven years ago we planted 3 little plants and how it dominates the beds. I love the bright pine smell at the front door. So enough about that, let’s talk about the cleansing!

I like to use one lemon for every being in my house, one for my ancestors and one for the land spirits but hey, it’s your place so you do you. Then grab 2 or 3 large stems of rosemary. If you need some holler at me for real. To get started I grab a bucket and half fill it with as hot as I can put my hands in water. Get your self calm and centered then drop the rosemary in the water. Then one lemon at a time pick it up and know who or what it represents. Submerge your hands and lemon in the water and while thinking of cleansing and protection of the being(s) peel and squeeze the lemon making sure to twist the rind to express the oils. One lemon at a time until your hands , your home, and your very being smells like lemon and rosemary.

Once the brew is concocted you might like to ask a deity for blessing. You do you. The next step is to take a soft cloth and wipe every doorway and window ledge with the brew. If you like a spell or chant check out thesingingwitches.com for some ideas. I also wipe down things or places that feel heavy. No need to get anything wet just keep moistening and ringing out the cloth. After you’ve taken care of those pour a bit down every drain in the house.

When you are finished there are a couple of options. You can dispose of all of the mixture down the drains (great for apartment living) or you can take it outside and circle your home with the brew.

As you can see I am not much of a poetry and drama magic user but I would love for you to share your ideas on how you would customize it! Wishing you all a great new year.

Making Cone Incense

The first time I made cone incense was a fun gathering. We purchased the supplies for a Nerdy Witches Study Group and we had a great time goofing it all up. Since then I’ve enjoyed adjusting and crafting formed incenses. I recorded a fun tutorial for Pagan Pride LA/OC’s Patreon. Head over and support them to check it out!  Below is my tried and true receipt.

2 Tablespoons sandalwood powder

1/4 teaspoon binder such as Gum tex, gum arabic, guar gum or makko

1 teaspoon powdered smelly component such as herb, resin, or spice

1 Tablespoon of liquid

Enjoy the incense crafting and let me know how it goes!

 

Ode to the Lemon

I adore lemons. There is little better than a cool lemon cucumber water on a hot summer day or the occasional glass of sweet-tart lemonade to refresh us. Why are lemons so darn good at cooling us off? What else does the lovely bright citrus offer? Let’s explore it a little.

36996058_sBotanically, this citrus fruit belongs to the family of Rutaceae, in the genus, Citrus (which also includes orange, pomelo, tangerine, and grapefruit). Scientific name: Citrus limon. It is the smallest among citrus fruits, nevertheless, holds more health benefiting nutrients than other larger citrus family fruits such as oranges, yuzu, pomelo (Citrus maxima), etc.

The lemon’s acidic taste comes from its citric acid which constitutes about 8% of its juice. Citric acid makes it easier for the body to absorb some minerals.

Lemons are an excellent source of vitamin C  (ascorbic acid). A 3.5-ounce serving provides about 88% of daily recommended intake. Ascorbic acid is a powerful water-soluble natural anti-oxidant. Consuming foods rich in vitamin C helps the human body develop resistance against infectious agents and scavenge harmful, pro-inflammatory free radicals from the blood.

Lemons also contain a variety of flavonoid glycosides (Hesperetin, naringin, and naringenin) that have been found to have a bio-active effect on human health as antioxidant, free radical scavenger, anti-inflammatory, and immune system modulators. Naringenin has also been shown to reduce oxidant injury to DNA in the cells in-vitro studies.

Lemon has long been sought to bolster the immune system and with 138mg of potassium, 53 mg of vitamin C, 26 mg of calcium and 22 mg of vitamin A it’s no wonder it improves the bodies natural functions.

Herbalists look to lemon to improve digestion, as an antimicrobial, as a cooling agent and as an anti-inflammatory.

But what about Lemon essential oil? It is such an amazing scent and like many essential oils, the constituents of lemon oil have antiseptic properties so it is an ideal additive to cleaning products. It’s uplifting and cleansing in aromatherapy and can create a more cheerful atmosphere. A Japanese study suggested that after diffusing lemon oil throughout a busy office building, typing errors decreased by 54%. How cool is that! What essential oil doesn’t contain is the water-soluble vitamins and Lemon waterminerals present in infusions.

One note of caution, you will see a lot of skin treatments with lemon because of it’s lovely astringency and vitamin content but it can increase the photosensitivity of the skin.

A glass of lemon water (yum) will surely do your body good! I like to keep a pitcher in the fridge during the summer and only replace the lemon once a week or so.

How do you use lemon? Tell us in the comments below.

 

Essential oils and infused oils

What's the differnceEssential oils are all the rage these days but for many applications an infused oil will serve you better.

Essential oils are highly aromatic, volatile plant oils that are commonly used as fragrances, flavorings and in aromatherapy. These oils tend to evaporate or volatilize fairly easily at moderate temperatures.

Infused oils are made with low (or no) heat and a prolonged extraction designed to draw out the plant’s bioactive compounds. A fixed oil (like olive or grape seed) dissolves many of the same compounds that dissolve in pure alcohol and the resulting infused oil can represent a more complete extract of the plant.

The bottom line? Essential oils are best when you want to use only the volatile oil components otherwise use infused.