Food for Thought
Lammas is a festival of regrets and farewells, of harvest and preserves. Reflect on these topics alone in the privacy of your journal or share them with others around a fire. Lughnasad is one of the great Celtic fire-festivals, so if at all possible, have your feast around a bonfire. While you're sitting around the fire, you might want to tell stories. Look up the myths of any of the grain Gods and Goddesses mentioned above and try re-telling them in your own words.
Think of the things you meant to do this summer or this year that are not coming to fruition. You can project your regrets onto natural objects like pine cones and throw them into the fire, releasing them. Or you can write them on dried corn husks (as suggested by Nancy Brady Cunningham in Feeding the Spirit) or on a piece of paper and burn them.
What is passing from your life? What is over? Say good-bye to it. As with regrets, you can find visual symbols and throw them into the fire, the lake or the ocean. You can also bury them in the ground, perhaps in the form of bulbs which will manifest in a new form in spring.
What have you harvested this year? What seeds have your planted that are sprouting? Find a visual way to represent these, perhaps creating a decoration in your house or altar which represents the harvest to you. Or you could make a corn dolly or learn to weave wheat. Look for classes in your area which can teach you how to weave wheat into wall pieces, which were made by early grain farmers as a resting place for the harvest spirits.
This is also a good time for making preserves, either literally or symbolically. As you turn the summer's fruit into jams, jellies and chutneys for winter, think about the fruits that you have gathered this year and how you can hold onto them. How can you keep them sweet in the store of your memory?
Bake a loaf of bread on Lammas. If you've never made bread before, this is a good time to start. Honor the source of the flour as you work with it: remember it was once a plant growing on the mother Earth.
If you have a garden, add something you've harvested--herbs or onion or corn--to your bread. If you don't feel up to making wheat bread, make corn bread.
Or gingerbread people. Or popcorn. What's most important is intention. All that is necessary to enter sacred time is an awareness of the meaning of your actions.
Shape the dough in the figure of a man or a woman and give your grain-person a name.
If he's a man, you could call him Lugh, the Sun-King, or John Barleycorn, or the Pillsbury Dough Boy, or Adonis or Osiris or Tammuz.
names for female figures: She of the Corn, She of the Threshing Floor, She of the Seed, She of the Great Loaf (these come from the Cyclades where they are the names of fertility figures), Freya (the Anglo-Saxon and Norse fertility Goddess who is, also called the Lady and the Giver of the Loaf), the Bride (Celtic) and Ziva or Siva (the Grain Goddess of, the Ukraine, Hungary, Yugoslavia and Czechoslovakia).
Like all holidays, Lammas calls for a feast.
When your dough figure is baked and ready to eat, tear him or her apart with your fingers.
The next part of the ceremony is best done with others. Feed each other hunks of bread (or gingerbread people or popcorn), putting the food in the other person's mouth with words like "May you never go hungry," "May you always be nourished," "Eat of the bread of life" or "May you live forever."
Offer each other drinks of water or wine with similar words. As if you were at a wake, make toasts to the passing summer, recalling the best moments of the year so far.
Another way to honor the Grain Goddess is to make a corn doll. This is a fun project to do with kids. Take dried-out corn husks and tie them together in the shape of a woman. She's your visual representation of the harvest. As you work on her, think about what you harvested this year. Give your corn dolly a name, perhaps one of the names of the Grain Goddess or one that symbolizes your personal harvest. Dress her in a skirt, apron and bonnet and give her a special place in your house. She is all yours till the spring when you will plant her with the new corn, returning to the Earth that which She has given to you.
Friday, July 30, 2010
Posted by Judith at 8:28 AM
Thursday, July 29, 2010
This morning started out like all mornings for me.
Before I leave the room, I check my computer, make coffee... and do more computer stuff.
But this morning I had an urge! Hummmmmmmm, and by 6 am I was at the docks crabbing!!!
I only stayed an hour, then packed up, came home, and started cooking!!!
LOVE MY CRABS!!!!!
Posted by Judith at 6:06 AM
Wednesday, July 28, 2010
Sometimes I wonder about myself! Yes, indeed I do. Like this morning, at 5 am, I was sitting on the road in front of my house...WEEDING! Yep! WEEDING!
The thin crack between the cement gutters and the road had weeds and grass growing in it. I can't stand weeds!!!!
So I'm out there, with a steak knife.... don't laugh, steak knives make great weeders in thin places..... pulling up all the weeds in front of my driveway!!
If you blow up the picture, you'll see the weeds in my neighbors driveway, and across the street.... but not in front of my house!!!! OCD???? Maybe, but I like things looking nice!
And here's Matt shopping list for Rutgers. Not a huge list, but stuff is slowly getting crossed off!
And the line up of my bottles, all cleaned and ready for my full moon water's that I make each year
And that darn avocado plant, that's growing like crazy!
Posted by Judith at 11:59 AM
Tuesday, July 27, 2010
Murphy, and his stupid laws should eat dirt and die!!!
I'm so tired of being caught up in them!!!
Like today, I want to hang a shelf, so I go get those little saw tooth thingies that you hang pictures with.... you know them!
Everyone has like a zillion of them hanging around the house in odd places!!! Right?
I need 3 of them, just 3, out of the zillion laying around the house.... I can only find 2!!! TWO, JUST FREAKING, TWO!!!! I know I have more, I've seen them tucked in junk drawers and tool boxes (I have 3 tool box's!!)
But, because I WANT THREE, only 2 will show up. Looking thru drawers, tool boxes, jewelry box's, every place I can think of..... no more little saw tooth thingies!!!!
And case in point, my bathroom cabinets..... decided to change the handles.... simple, count the amount of handles needed, run to hardware store, pick out new ones.... right? Found the perfect ones, BIG HUGE BIN FULL OF THEM!!!!
Miscounted, one short, ran back to store (THIS IS IN THE SAME DAY!!!) BIN EMPTY!!!! No more handles.... someone came in and bought like 50 of them!!!!! And the store has never gotten them back in stock????????? So I have one drawer without a handle!!!!!
This happens to me ALL THE TIME!!
Just watch, I can't find my prescription sun glass's!!! Summers here, and I need them. I have torn the house apart looking for them!!!
Now I know, the minute it starts snowing outside, I WILL FIND THEM!!! ARRRRGGGGGGHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!
I personally think it's Trolls! Little, dirty, stinking Trolls!!!!!
Posted by Judith at 7:30 AM
Friday, July 23, 2010
Because of the intense heat wave here.... lots of my herbs are starting to bolt way before time!!!
I noticed the peppermint was getting ready to flower, and ran out and cut down the branch's close to flowering, and hung them in the kitchen with my lavender!
My house plants have shown their application for my kitchen windows by growing totally out of control!!! Love the plants, but now it's hard to sit and eat in comfort with them!!!!
Especially since they seem to be trying to grab the food off my plate!!!!!
I guess from now on, I'll eat in the dinning room?
Posted by Judith at 10:30 AM
Thursday, July 22, 2010
I realized I haven't said much about my "allergy reducing" diet in a while.
Yes, I'm still on it.
It's easy to be good when being bad makes you feel like shit.
I've had only 2 reactions to something in the last few months... one was a candy bar that I got at aldi's, and the other was a hamburger I ordered at Shore Leave. (100% beef my aunts ass!)
So far I've lost 45 pounds, I'm feeling GREAT!!! Trim (though I still have more to go... like another 40 lbs) but my energy is FANTASTIC.
Another plus, was the fact I had constant ear infections..... I would have an allergy attack, my ears would block up, and ZAPPO! one ear infection........ but since the diet started.... NOT ONE INFECTION!!!
And, before, for me to go more then a month without one was a miracle, now I don't even remember what they felt like.
Oh, and something stupid..... my shoe size went from 8 to a size 6!!!!! Gotta be the only woman in the world to lose weight in her feet!!!
I think my body is fighting me..... so It's making me lose weight from the floor up. giggle
It's not easy giving up all the wonderful foods I used to eat, but when I know now that they were making me feel so bad.... I wonder why I kept eating them!
Like my sister who tested Pos for wheat allergy, and refuses to give up the cookies and cake, and wonders why she feels so lousy!!! I try to talk to her about it, but she refuses to hear me......
But, I'm happy, and I'm sorry to say....THAT'S WHAT COUNTS! GIGGLE
Posted by Judith at 1:32 PM
Bumper-Stickers Seen On Military Bases
"When In Doubt, Empty The Magazine"
"Marine Sniper - You can run, but you'll just die tired!"
"Machine Gunners - Accuracy By Volume"
"Except For Ending Slavery, Fascism, Nazism and Communism, WAR has Never Solved Anything."
" U.S. Marines - Certified Counselors to the 72 Virgins Dating Club."
" U.S. Air Force - Travel Agents To Allah"
"Stop Global Whining"
Naval Corollary: Dead Men Don't Testify.
"The Marine Corps - When It Absolutely, Positively Has To Be Destroyed Overnight"
"Death Smiles At Everyone - Marines Smile Back"
"What Do I Feel When I Kill A Terrorist? A Little Recoil"
"Marines - Providing Enemies of America an Opportunity To Die For their Country Since 1775"
"Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Anyone Who Threatens It"
"Happiness Is A Belt-Fed Weapon"
"It's God's Job to Forgive Bin Laden - It's Our Job To Arrange The Meeting"
"Artillery Brings Dignity to What Would Otherwise Be Just A Vulgar Brawl"
"One Shot, Twelve Kills - U.S. Naval Gun Fire Support "
"My Kid Fought In Iraq So Your Kid Can Party In College"
"A Dead Enemy Is A Peaceful Enemy - Blessed Be The Peacemakers"
"If You Can Read This, Thank A Teacher...If You Can Read It In English, Thank A Veteran"
"Some people spend an entire lifetime wondering if they made a difference in the world. The U.S. ARMED FORCES don't have that problem." --Ronald Reagan
Posted by Judith at 3:05 AM
Tuesday, July 20, 2010
Posted by Judith at 6:30 PM
I'm in total love with these little "Teddy Bear Sunflowers"!!!!!!!
So easy to grow from seeds, and sooooooo pretty!!!
Very tiny as you can see, but with the big sunflower color and strength!
And these, came in a mixed bag of bulbs. I have no clue what they are, but they are tall and regal, and very pretty! Anyone know their name????
Posted by Judith at 11:48 AM
Monday, July 19, 2010
Thanks to the wonderful Frog Queen, I've found these little guys!!! They are already hard at work getting rid of all those horrible red hatted pests!!!
They make a funny noise though.... OMG WHAT ARE THEY DOING!!!!
I think they are EATING the Gnomes!!!!!!
It's horrible.....what happens after they finish the last one????
I think I'm going to lock all the doors, and hope they run to someone else's garden!!!!
What have you done frog queen!!!!????? WHAT HAVE YOU DONE????????
Posted by Judith at 3:07 PM
Sunday, July 18, 2010
Friday, July 16, 2010
There are basically two forms of incense:combustible and non combustible.
Non combustible incense is achieved by simply sprinkling a few pinches of dried plant material, or a blend of materials, on a smoldering charcoal block. That's a charcoal block, not a charcoal briquette used for the barbecue
Briquettes are of different composition, and give off toxic amounts
of carbon monoxide. Don't use them to burn incense! Instead, occult supply stores, and many novelty shops carry a supply of raw charcoal blocks for this purpose.
While we're in a cautious mode, let it be said that you should always burn incense in some type censor. It could be a censor purchased just for this purpose, or a ceramic dish laid with a few inches of sand or salt. Sometimes the sweet aroma of dried plant material can change dramatically when burned!
You'll need to experiment with blends you may already have in mind, or to discover
new ones. And, by using the no combustible method, your mistakes, if any, will be short lived.
I would also advise that you sample mixtures on smoldering charcoal before proceeding to making them into combustible incense.
The plant material to be used should be finely ground in a food processor, blender, hand held coffee grinder, or an old fashioned mortar and pestle.
combustible incense is made in the form of sticks (sometimes called joss-sticks), bricks, or cones.
Whatever the volume and shape, combustible incense is always made with potassium nitrate, better known as salt peter. This helps the incense to burn well, and evenly.
You can find potassium nitrate in nearly any drug store, although you may have to ask the pharmacist for it.
You will need thin wooden splints or skewers, such as thin, straight twigs, or cocktail skewers.
Each stick is dipped into the incense base until covered. They are then allowed to dry standing on end, perhaps by poking them into a slab of clay, or a pot of dirt or sand.
This process is repeated until a satisfactory amount of layers have built up on each stick.
Block incense is made by rolling out the final mixture on wax paper to a 1/4 inch thickness, much like cookie dough. Then cut into 1 inch squares and allow to dry thoroughly.
And there you have it! Not so tough, Now, on to some recommended blends, the first of which is an ancient blend indeed.
MAGIC KYPHI INCENSE
Kyphi is an ancient Egyptian formula
"its aromatic substances lull to sleep, allay anxieties, and brighten the dreams. It is made of things that delight most in the night and exhibits its virtues by night."
The following is a traditional recipe for making Kyphi. If you want to stick to it fine, but you may also omit or substitute certain herbs if some of the ingredients are difficult to obtain.
Place 1/4 cup raisins in a bowl. Add just enough white wine to cover the raisins, cover loosely with a tea towel or cheesecloth, and allow to steep for seven days.
On the third day, blend equal parts of the following powdered herbs in a bit of white wine: Juniper,
Acacia, Henna, Sweet Sedge Root. After two days drain and reserve any liquid.
On the last day, drain the raisin mixture, reserving the liquid. In a small bowl mix together equal parts of the following ground herbs: Calamus, Gum Mastic, Peppermint, Bay Laurel, Orris, Cinnamon, and Galangal. Set aside.
In another small bowl blend together
1 tbls. powdered myrrh, and 1 tbls. clove honey. To this mixture add the ground herbs, and the raisins and herbs steeped in wine. Blend well. Add a little of the reserved wine if the mixture becomes too dry. Follow the directions for making cone or block incense.
INCENSE cones and blocks
This incense is used in many rituals and is a common spell component.
It is an incense of increase that is deceivingly easy to make.
Use all of your focus and energy, your will and intention, while making this scent.
It is used over charcoals (the one's specifically made for incense) or over a ritual fire.
CAUTION! Warning! If used over a ritual fire, flames will leap up along the dust trail of this incense powder! There will be sparkling (sparks) of incense outside of this trail of flames as well! This is an impressive effect, but dangerous if you are not practiced at it! Start out small and toss about 1 teaspoon of it over the glowing coals or flames, all at once, don't trail the dust or sprinkle it. Stand away from the fire, and upwind.
Use in areas that do not require burn permits, and have something to
douse the fire nearby. Do not use if you are wearing gauzy or loose ritual robes and costumes.
MAGIC FULL MOON INCENSE
Within the three days prior to the actual full moon, but not after! Gather the ingredients required, along with a pestle and mortar to blend them in.
If desired, you can use your cauldron, and some sort of crushing or mixing tool.
1 ounce (about 30 grams) of the finest sandalwood powder you can find (santalum album)
5 grams (a marble sized nugget) of amber resin, NOT the stone! The soft, sweet
smelling resin that is often imported from India, available at health food stores,
and of course herb and Witch shops.
3 drops of vanilla essential oil. NOT the perfume or fragrance oil, only
true vanilla from the orchid (Vanilla planifolia or Vanilla aromatica) If this is cost prohibitive or unavailable, use real vanilla extract available at most any grocery store.
Preferably outside, under the actual full moon,
or indoors near a window where the moon is visible:
Fill the mortar or cauldron with the sandalwood powder, and crush the amber
into it with the pestle or tool of your choice. Use clockwise or deosil blending motions.
Focus on the energy of the full moon, or if you are making the incense for a specific spell,
focus on the goal of that spell alone. You can incorporate your favorite words of power or chant while doing this.
When the powder is smooth and consistent, add the vanilla, one drop at a time while saying your chosen words of power, (which is best) or the following (which will suffice in most cases):
Drop of moon, grant my boon.
Blend in the drops in the same way you blended in the amber resin. Place the mixture in a clear glass jar with an airtight lid. Keep it away from heat, sunlight, and moisture.
Charge it under the light of the full moon on the three days prior to it becoming actually full.
The full moon light penetration is the reason for not storing this in an opaque jar.
It is ready for use immediately, but can be charged more if desired.
Gum tragacanth (or use gum Arabic as a substitute) is made into a glue, and acts as a binding agent.
It is the key ingredient in all molded incense. To make the glue, place a teaspoon of the ground gum in a glass of warm water and mix completely until dispersed.
A foam may rise, but it can be easily redistributed, or skimmed off if it gets in your way.
(The gum is unbelievably absorbent! A mere
ounce will absorb up to one full gallon of water in a single week!)
your gum mixture to absorb the glass of water until it thickens to a paste.
Now you will need to create your incense base. An incense base is made up of talcum powder, sawdust, ground spice, dried herbs and flowers, or any combination thereof.
Once you have defined your base, an essential oil may be added for additional scent, the potassium nitrate is blended in, and finally, the gum-glue.
Here's a sample mixture for cone incense:
--6 parts powdered sandalwood or cedar 2 parts benzoin 1 part orris root
--3-5 parts ground herb mixture of choice 6 drops essential herbal oil of choice
Mix the first four ingredients until well blended. Add the essential oil (or combination of oils) and mix with your hands until you have a fine, crumbly mixture.
Add the dried herb mixture and mix again. Now add 10% potassium nitrate (KNO3). In other words, use a ratio of 10:1.
If you've made 10 oz. of incense base, then add 1 oz. of KNO3.
Next comes the addition of the glue mixture.
Add one teaspoon at a time, mixing with your hands as you go. Add only enough of the glue to achieve the consistency of model clay or play dough from the entire mixture.
On a piece of waxed paper, shape the mixture into small cone shapes (just like the store bought ones you're already familiar with) and allow them to dry for a week in a cool, dry place.
The area you choose to dry the incense cones in must be free of moisture in order to dry thoroughly.
By following the sample recipe given, you can also make stick incense.
Although, this requires much more patience and tenacity than making any other form.
Plan to spend the better part of a day in making these.
Posted by Judith at 12:17 PM
Thursday, July 15, 2010
There are approximately fifty species of gooseberries in the Northern Hemisphere. The greatest number are found in North America. The gooseberry is native to Europe, Western Asia, and northern Africa.
Gooseberries were cultivated in home gardens in the Low Countries of Europe from the beginning of the sixteenth century.
It is believed that the gooseberry was brought from England in 1629 by the Massachusetts Bay Colonists.
Some people say that the origin of the name gooseberry stems from the fact that it is often served with goose. Another belief is that it got its name from the Dutch "kruisbes," meaning "crossberry." Although the English enjoy uncooked ripe gooseberries, Americans enjoy them more in pies, tarts, jams, jellies, conserves, preserves, and marmalades. Gooseberries also are used in spiced dishes, and are often combined with other fruits. Also, the juice from gooseberries can be used alone or combined with other fruit juices.
Benefits of Gooseberry
Gooseberries are considered to be good for the liver and intestinal tract. They develop an alkaline ash when digested.
Gooseberries are watery, and have a high potassium and sodium content.
When cooking them, sugar is best for sweetening, or honey can be added after cooking.
Nutrients in one pound
Iron 2.3 mg
Protein 3.6 g
Vitamin A 1,330 I.U.
Fat 0.9 g
Thiamine 0 mg
Carbohydrates 44 g
Riboflavin 0 mg
Calcium 100 mg
Niacin 0 mg
Phosphorus 127 mg
Ascorbic acid 149 mg
The best way to take it, with the least loss of vitamin C is to eat it raw with a little salt. The berry may also be used as a vegetable. It is often used in the form of pickles and marmalade. It can be preserved for a long period when it is dried and turned into powder
Natural Benefits and Curative Properties
Many medicinal virtues have been attributed to gooseberry. The fresh fruit is light, laxative and diuretic. A tablespoonful each of fresh gooseberry juice and honey mixed together forms a very valuable medicine for the treatment of several ailments. It should be taken every morning.
Its regular use will promote vigor in the body within a few days. When fresh fruit is not available, dry powder can be mixed with honey
This medicinal tonic is highly beneficial in the treatment of respiratory disorders. It is especially valuable in tuberculosis of the lungs, asthma and bronchitis.
gooseberry, with its high vitamin C content, is considered valuable in diabetes.
A tablespoonful of its juice, mixed with a cup of fresh bitter gourd juice, taken daily for two months will stimulate the islets of Lengerhans i.e. -the isolated group of cells that the secrete hormone insulin. It thus reduces the blood sugar in diabetes.
Diet restrictions should be strictly observed while taking this medicine. It will also prevent eye complications in diabetes. A teaspoonful of this mixture once or twice a day would be effective in checking the progress of the disease.
gooseberry is considered an effective remedy for heart disease. It tones up the functions of all the organs of the body and builds up health by destroying the heterogeneous elements and renewing the body energy.
The juice of gooseberry, mixed with honey, is useful in preserving eye sight. It will also be beneficial in the treatment of conjunctivitis and glaucoma. It reduces intra ocular tension ill a remarkable manner. A cupful of this juice should be taken mixed with honey twice daily in such cases.
The gooseberry is useful in the treatment of rheumatism. One teaspoonful of powder of the dry fruit mixed with two teaspoonfuls of jaggery should be taken twice daily for a month in this disease.
As an extremely rich source of vitamin C. Indian gooseberry is one of the best remedies for scurvy. Powder of dry gooseberry . nixed with equal quantity of sugar should be taken in doses of one teaspoonful three times daily with milk.
gooseberry has revitalizing effects. It contains an element which is very valuable in preventing ageing and in maintaining strength in old age. It improves body resistance and protects against infection. It strengthens the heart, hair and Different glands in the body. It is said that the great ancient sage Muni Chyawan rejuvenated himself in his late 70s and regained his virility by the use of amla.
gooseberry is an accepted hair tonic in traditional recipes for enriching hair growth and hair pigmentation. The fruit, cut into pieces, is dried preferably in shade. These pieces are boiled in coconut oil till the solid matter becomes like charred dust. This darkish oil is an excellent oil to prevent graying. The water in which dired pieces are soaked overnight is also nourishing to hair. This water should be used for the last rinse while washing the hair.
Posted by Judith at 5:43 AM
Rosemary consists of the leaves or the leaves with flowering tops of Rosmarinus officinalis L. (family Lamiaceae), an evergreen shrubby herb with aromatic linear leaves, which are dark green above and white below, and small pale blue flowers. Rosemary has been extensively cultivated in kitchen gardens.
This evergreen shrub originated in the Mediterranean area and is now widely cultivated for its aromatic leaves. The many branches have an ash-colored, scaly bark and bear opposite, leathery thick leaves which are lustrous and dark green above and downy white underneath. They have a prominent vein in the middle and margins which are rolled down.
Various preparations of rosemary, including an infusion or tea, a wine, a spirit (alcoholic solution), and a bath, are recommended for their tonic, astringent, and diaphoretic (increases perspiration) effects.
The leaves are also said to have stomachic (aids digestion) properties and to make a hair tonic that, when applied externally, will prevent baldness. Rosemary is recommended especially in cases of low blood pressure; a bath prepared from rosemary is so stimulating to the body that it should not be taken in the evening or it may prevent one from sleeping.
Finally, both the medication and its volatile oil have been used as emmenagogues (to stimulate menstrual flow) and abortifacients.
Whatever physiological activity rosemary possesses is attributed to its volatile oil, which occurs in the leaves in concentrations ranging from 1 to 2.5 percent. Containing such compounds as camphor, borneol, and cineole, the volatile oil, similar to many others, has antibacterial properties.
Rosemary also has some stimulating properties, particularly when applied locally. The leaves of rosemary contain a number of flavonoid pigments, one of which, diosmin, is reported to decrease capillary permeability and fragility.
German health authorities have approved its use internally for indigestion and as a supportive therapy for rheumatic disorders; externally, rosemary is recognized for the treatment of circulatory disturbances.
Rosemary is extensively used as a household spice and as a flavoring agent in various commercial products including prepared meats, baked goods, vegetables, and so on.
Rosemary oil is widely employed as a fragrance component in soaps, creams, lotions, perfumes, and toilet waters; small amounts are also added as a flavoring agent to alcoholic beverages, frozen desserts, candy, puddings, and similar products.
Extracts containing carnosic and labiatic acids have been shown to have antioxidant (food preservative) properties similar to those of butylated hydroxyanisole (BHA) and butylated hydroxytoluene (BHT).
Rosemary tea makes a wonderfully refreshing mouth wash for getting rid of bad breath. In 1 pint of boiling water removed from the heat, steep 3 tsp. of the dried flowering tops or leaves for half an hour, covered. Strain and refrigerate. Gargle and rinse mouth each morning or several times a day.
Certain of the aromatic spices like peppermint, rosemary, sage, savory and thyme, are believed to hold tremendous value in sterilizing water contaminated with unfriendly bacteria.
Rosemary contains volatile oils which are antiseptic, with antibacterial and antifungal properties and which enhance the function of the immune system. By increasing circulation to the skin rosemary causes sweating and makes a good remedy to bring down fevers.
Its warming and stimulating properties help to clear phlegm from the head and chest, useful for relieving colds, flu, catarrh, coughs, wheezing, bronchitis and whooping cough. Its additional relaxant effects help relieve spasm in the bronchial tubes as in asthma.
Rosemary is a wonderful tonic, particularly to the heart, brain and nervous system. By increasing the flow of blood to the head, rosemary stimulates the brain and heightens concentration. Rosemary has been used for anxiety, tension, exhaustion, lethargy, depression, insomnia and as a tonic during convalescence and for the elderly.
Rosemary makes an excellent remedy for preventing and treating migraines and headaches. Rosemary improves vitality and stimulates digestion, relieves flatulence and distension, enhances the appetite and increases the flow of digestive juices.
Rosemary helps move food and wastes efficiently through the system, removes stagnant food, improves sluggish digestion and helps absorption of nutrients. Its bitters stimulate liver and gallbladder function, increasing the flow of bile and aiding digestion of fats. Rosemary is famous as a rejuvenating tonic and is said to slow the aging process. Rosemary is a powerful antioxidant, preventing damage by free radicals.
Aerial parts, essential oil.
Circulatory stimulant - Rosemary has a central place in European herbal medicine. A warming herb, rosemary stimulates circulation of blood to the head, improving concentration and memory. Rosemary also eases headaches and migraine, and encourages hair growth by improving blood flow to the scalp.
Nervous problems - Rosemary has been used to treat epilepsy and vertigo.
Poor circulation - Thought to raise low blood pressure, rosemary is valuable for fainting and weakness associated with deficient circulation.
Restorative - Rosemary aids recovery from long-term stress and chronic illness. Rosemary is thought to stimulate the adrenal glands and is used specifically for debility, especially when accompanied by poor circulation and digestion.
Uplifting - Rosemary is often prescribed for people who, though not actually ill, are stressed and "failing to thrive." Rosemary is valued as an herb that raises the spirits, and is useful for mild to moderate depression.
Other medical uses - Applied as a lotion or diluted essential oil, rosemary eases aching, rheumatic muscles. Add the infusion or essential oil to bathwater for a reviving soak.Septicemia, Tension headache, Toxic shock syndrome.
Posted by Judith at 5:01 AM
Dill is mostly a culinary herb today, but it does have some value in medicine, mostly as a stomach soother and anti-gas remedy.
It is also said to increase mother's milk and help treat breast congestion from nursing.
It is mild, and makes a good remedy for colic in babies.
Dill water is used often for relief of the above symptoms, and can be made by adding 8 drops of Oil to 1 pint of water. Take up to 8 teaspoons per day of this concoction.
Dill can also be made into a Tea, and sweetened with honey, or prepared as an infusion by steeping 2 teaspoons of seed in 1 cup of water for 10-15 minutes, then straining. Take 1-2 cups per day.
An aromatic annual growing to 30 in (75 cm). Dill has an erect hollow stem, feathery leaves, and numerous yellow flowers in umbels.
Hang a bunch of dill over your door, says an old folk belief, and you will be protected against witches. Although such wonders are no longer required of the plant, other age-old uses of dill in cookery and medicine have persisted into modern times.
Apparently, dill has been used since the time of the Egyptians, who mentioned it some 5,000 years ago in their writings. The herb acquired its present name from the use of its oil (extracted from the seeds) in potions that soothed the colicky stomachs of infants.
The Old Norse word dilla, from which dill is derived, means "to lull." Even now, some families use dill water, or gripe water, to relieve digestive discomfort. The oil is also used commercially for scenting soaps.
Dill is chiefly known today as a delightfully pungent, sharp-tasting culinary herb, whose fresh leaves add interest to salads and fish and whose seeds give dill pickles, a side dish that came to America from Germany, their characteristic flavor. Dill seeds also add flavor to stews, sauces, potato dishes, and breads. The leaves can be dried for use throughout the year; commercial herb dealers package them as dill weed. But the fresh leaves have more flavor.
Dill has always been valued as a remedy for the stomach, relieving gas and calming the digestion.
Dill's essential oil relieves intestinal spasms and cramps and helps to settle colic. Chewing the seeds improves bad breath. Dill makes a useful addition to cough, cold, and flu remedies, and is a mild diuretic. Like caraway, dill can be used with antispasmodics, such as crampbark, for period pain. Dill increases milk production, and when taken regularly by nursing mothers, helps to avoid colic in their babies.
Dill is an excellent remedy for flatulence and the colic that is sometimes associated with it. This is the herb of choice in the colic of children. Dill will stimulate the flow of milk in nursing mothers. Chewing the seeds will clear up bad breath (halitosis).
Posted by Judith at 4:42 AM
Wednesday, July 14, 2010
Garlic, known by its Latin name of Allium sativum, a part of the Lily family, may very well be one of Mother Nature's great gifts to man.
While it is legendary for warding off those odd little human-like vampires of legend and myth, it has many great practical and proven uses in natural medicine.
Garlic is mentioned in ancient medical papyri from Egypt as being utilized as medicine.
It is written that workers building the pyramids were given garlic each day to help increase their vitality. It is mentioned in ancient Greek and Roman medical texts for a variety of afflictions, including uterine tumors, and wild garlic was used in the United States by various Native American tribes to treat many different ailments.
Chinese medicine also shows a long history of use of this powerful herb. Ayurvedic medicine has a place for garlic as a healer as well, dating back at least to ancient Indian manuscripts, for a variety of uses including abdominal tumors.
Medicinal Uses of Garlic
Garlic is a powerful natural antibiotic. It has been shown to stimulate cell growth and activity. It reduces blood pressure in hypertension, and is useful in lowering cholesterol, while at the same time raising the beneficial cholesterol, HDL.
A main advantage to using garlic for its antibiotic properties is that it does not destroy the body's natural intestinal bacteria. It is excellent for use in all colds and infections of the body.
It is being studied as a possible cancer prevention agent. Garlic protects the liver, kills worms and parasites internally and externally, reduces blood clotting, and provides antioxidant protection to cells.
When ingesting the raw cloves, a sprig of parsley chewed immediately after will freshen the breath. Garlic oil is often used to treat earaches and ear infections, especially for infants and children, and topically will clear up various skin problems and infections.
It was used as a field wound dressing in World War I. Garlic has also been shown to be an effective treatment for candida and other fungal infections, such as athlete's foot.
The main active constituent in garlic, allicin, is destroyed when heated, and is only released from the clove when crushed or bruised.
So for most treatments, garlic needs to be consumed raw and crushed.
The cooked form is useful also, as it provides the body with a source of sulphur that is much needed for a healthy body, as well as for healthy hair. Garlic is also an important source of selenium. There are at least 9 anti-coagulative constituents within a bulb of this treasure.
Garlic has been shown to protect the liver from the actions of acetaminophen, as well as other liver-affecting drugs. It has also been shown to be able to rid the body of heavy metal concentrations, such as mercury from fish consumption.
Its cousins, the various onions, have many of these same medicinal properties, but not as concentrated, and are not as powerful nor as wide in scope as garlic.
Parts used: bulb
Actions: antibiotic, antiviral, parasiticide, expectorant, carminative, digestant, alterative, diuretic, stimulant, tonic, anti-microbial, diaphoretic, cholagogue, hypotensive, anti-spasmodic, anti-oxidant, anti-fungal
Those using blood-thinning drugs should consult with their doctor before utilizing therapeutic sized dosages of garlic, as garlic may compound the effects of these types of drugs. It is safe to use garlic medicinally while pregnant and while nursing, in moderate amounts.
Spiritual Uses of Garlic
Peeled garlic cloves placed in each room is said to ward off disease. The whole bulb is hung in new homes to dispel negativity and evil and evil spirits.
It is a strong protective herb. A clove of garlic placed under the pillow of sleeping children is believed to protect them.
Roman soldiers believed that garlic gave them courage.
Dreams of eating garlic means that you will uncover secrets.
Dreams of garlic in the house brings luck. It is often associated with the goddess Hecate.
Garlic is mentioned in the Bible as being used by the Hebrews following Moses, and it was reportedly used by those same peoples to increase and maintain virility.
Dioscordes, the Greek doctor who worked with the Roman army, notated garlic as a holy herb, and it was used in purification ceremonies in the temples of that time.
Posted by Judith at 6:45 PM
Posted by Judith at 11:55 AM
You totaly have to check out this blog! She's so funny, I don't know where she gets this stuff!!!
TOP 10 REASONS WHY WITCHES DON'T WORSHIP THE DEVIL...
#10. Scorch marks on the furniture whenever Satan manifests.
#9. Not even Lysol can mask the smell of brimstone.
#8. It's hard to keep the flaming goat skulls lit when Satan isn't around.
#7. It's getting hard to find any blond virgins.
#6. Repeated stooping motion from administering the 'kiss of shame' is hard on the older coven members.
#5. Cat keeps playing with Satan's tail, which really annoys him.
#4. Demons smell worse than the brimstone.
#3. Blood from sacrifices is hard to get out of the carpet.
#2. The wailing of the dammed souls in hell keeps the neighbors awake at night.
AND THE NUMBER ONE REASON WHY WITCHES DO NOT WORSHIP SATAN IS...
(DRUM ROLL PLEASE..)
#1. We cannot worship something that doesn't exist.
Posted by Judith at 6:21 AM
Tuesday, July 13, 2010
Since it's time to pick and dry your lavender, here are a few things to do with it!
LAVENDER GETAWAY MAGIC BATH
For a soothing winter bath, put 2 tablespoons of lavender buds (Lavandula angustifolia)
and 2 tablespoons of finely ground oatmeal into a small muslin bag or a piece of cloth.
Secure tightly with a string or rubber band. Tie the bundle
with the string or a piece of ribbon so that it under the spigot of your bathtub.
Once the bath is full, try rubbing the bundle gently over your skin.
Both the lavender and the oatmeal will work to soothe dry skin and calm frazzled nerves as well.
HEALING WATERS SPELL
Take equal parts of lavender, violet, and rosemary.
Empower them and Then boil them in a pot with about a quart of water over medium heat.
When the water is richly colored and the herbs are scenting your kitchen, drain
The water off into a jar. A plain coffee filter works great for this.
Place the jar in sunlight for an entire day to absorb the radiant energies of the sun.
You can do this on a Wednesday to add the healing powers of mercury to the spell*
Occasionally look at the jar and add your own energies to it.
Just before sundown fetch the jar and hold it firmly between your hands Just below your naval. Feel your desire to be well filling the jar and with your minds eye see it glowing brightly as the sun. Chant these words until you have filled the jar with as much energy as it will hold.
By the herb and by the sun
Wellness and I are now as one
Strengthening energies now are merged.
Baneful energies now be purged
Anoint spots where illness lurks or on your belly if you are unsure where the source of discomfort lies. Or pour contents into bath water.
Here are a few Lavender recipes to try regardless if you are a beginner or a Lavender aficionado! Tasty and easy to make. Please use organically grown, non-sprayed "Sweet" Lavender (Lavandula angustifolia) for best results. "Hidcote" Lavender will give you the best colour for any infusions eg. syrups, jelly or vinegars.
My favourite Lavender-Lemon Verbena Cake
Makes 2 dozen muffins/cupcakes or one bundt cake or a lovely 2 layer cake special enough for a birthday cake with fresh fruit!
2½ cups cake flour
3½ tsp baking powder
1 cup sugar
1/2 tsp salt
2 TBSP fresh, finely chopped Lemon Verbena leaves
2 TBSP fresh Lavender flowers
2/3 cup butter
3/4 cup milk
1/2 cup apple juice
1 tsp lemon extract OR 1 TBSP real lemon juice
zest of one lemon
Cream butter & sugar & herbs
Blend dry ingredients & add to sugar & butter
Whip juice, milk, eggs & extract
Add to dry ingredients
Mix well until batter really smooth
Preheat oven to 350F
…Choose your pans & prep with butter & dusting of flour or use cupcake papers…
Bake 25 minutes for muffins, approx 30 minutes for layer cake, 35 minutes for tube cake. Test cake center.
For special occasions: mix a batch of cooled Lemon curd & a cup of stiffly whipped whipping cream together and use as the filling & icing. Add fresh fruit as wished...berries best!
Lynda’s Lavender-Lemon Curd
1/2 cup of real butter
1¼ cup white sugar
2 lemons, rind & juice up to 1/2 cup
4 well beaten eggs
pinch of salt
1 TBSP dried lavender flowers or 3 TBSP fresh
Use a double boiler; bring water underneath to a boil then lower to simmer.
Place butter & sugar first in the top pot to melt together, and then add the rest of the ingredients.
Whisk gently until smooth and thickened.
Pour through a sieve over a heat proof bowl then spoon into two clean jam jars and cool. Keep refrigerated…about a week if you are lucky!
Granny’s fluffy scones
2 cups flour
1/4 cup sugar
1/3 cup butter
2 tsp cream of tartar + 1 tsp soda
(OR 3 tsp baking powder)
pinch of salt
2 eggs, slightly beaten*
(No eggs…use 2 TBSP plain good yogurt)
1/4 cup milk
1/2 cup currants optional
Blend butter into dry ingredients.
Mix eggs & milk with a fork.
Make a "well" in the dry ingredients & mix lightly.
Turn out onto floured board.
Handle gently, barely knead.
Roll until 1/2 inch thick. Cut into shapes; a simple drinking glass will do, flour the rim, and twist as you cut to release scone.
Bake @ 400 F (200C) for 10 minutes. Serve warm!
Lavender Three Layer Sweet Torte
Makes one 9 inch cake for 8-12 Torte
1/3 cup melted butter plus 2 TBSP cut into pieces for topping*
3/4 cup brown sugar plus 2 TBSP for topping**
1/2 cup milk
2 large eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
1-2 TBSP Lavender flowers, 3 TBSP if using fresh
1 1/3 cups white flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
4 apples cut into wedge style medium thick slices
1 cup black berries/or dried sweet cranberries or 6 pieces crystallized ginger minced
1/4 cup walnuts optional
1/4 tsp cinnamon
Preheat oven to 375F
Only just melt the 1/3 cup butter in a medium sauce pan; cool slightly then whisk in the sugar, milk, eggs, vanilla extract and Lavender flowers.
In a blender; briefly pulse the flour, baking powder & salt together then, pour in butter mix and process until smooth.
Butter a 9-inch spring form pan, then coat inside with white sugar instead of flour.
Pour batter evenly into pan.
Arrange apple slices in a pattern, sprinkle with berries & place nuts in gaps. Press slightly into batter. Sprinkle the top with cinnamon, brown sugar** & extra butter bits*.
Bake 55 minutes, checking center.
Meanwhile…an easy way to make homemade custard is to use Bird’s Eye custard powder: 3 TBSP powder, 3 TBSP sugar & 2 1/2 cups of milk. Whisk together while cold then cook over medium heat, stirring constantly to not scorch the bottom.
Cool cake slightly in ring before pouring custard on the whole cake & chill in ring to set custard on top for an all-in-one dessert OR remove sides when cake is cooled, serve sliced cake on individual plates with warm custard poured on top….mmmmmm.
Be playful with the fruit/nut/spiced toppings!
Lavender Limoncello Cookies
…a taste of golden, lemony Summer!
½ cup butter
1 cup white sugar
2 Tbsp. dried Lavender flowers
2 Lemons, zest & juice
2 Tbsp. Limoncello liqueur
2 tsp. baking powder
2 cups + white flour
Set oven @ 350° F.
Blend butter, sugar & Lavender.
Add in lemon zest & juice then the egg & Limoncello.
Blend in the 2 cups flour & the baking powder next.
Dough should be soft but not oily.
Add more flour by the TBSP if needed.
Roll into 2 logs in wax paper. Chill 20 minutes.
Slice into ½ inch thick rounds, makes approx 30-36.
Bake 10-15 minutes max, “bottoms” pale gold.
Lavender Harvest Fudge
2 cups (12 oz.) good chocolate chips (for special occasions use Belgian chocolate!)
1 tin (300 ml) sweetened condensed milk
1 Tbsp. dried Lavender flowers (3 Tbsp. fresh)
- measure, then grind finely, use a clean coffee grinder
Melt everything together in a double boiler. Add 3 tbsp. butter. Stir until smooth and melted.
Pour into a pan lined with wax paper (approximately 9" x 9"). Cover with Saran Wrap. Chill overnight.
Cut into 1" squares.
Recipe can be doubled, use 9" x 12" pan. Stripe it using white chocolate for top layer and dark for the bottom.
**Optional: Sprinkle fresh Lavender on top layer to decorate!
Lavender Herbal Jelly
1 1/2 cups fresh lavender flowers
3 1/4 cups water
1 box powdered 'certo'
4 cups white sugar
1 Tbsp. white wine vinegar
To begin, sterilze 5 x 1c jelly jars, rings and seals, and find a medium to large sized pot.
Bring the water to a boil in a pot, place in the lavender, and cover with a lid.
Lower heat to simmer for 5 min, then remove from heat. Don't peek! Steep for at least 20 mins or preferably overnight.
Strain and mesure 3 cups of the lavender brew and place in deep jelly making pot.
Whisk in pectin crystals and vinegar, bring to a boil, and whisk in sugar.
Keep pot boiling until it is at a rolling boil that can't be stirred down (about 1 min.)
Remove from heat, and let sit for 5 min. Skim the top if necessary.
Quickly bottle and seal before it jellifies. Let the jelly age 1 month for best results.
Posted by Judith at 4:16 PM
Monday, July 12, 2010
The convention went great! I had a blast, and hooked up with tons of old friends, and some new ones!
This is a shot of the bar in the evening, actually the lounge area before the bar.... the bar was too dark and crowded to get pictures
This robot was a pain!!! it moved, sang, danced, and was totally annoying!!!!
Grabbed this shot of the dealers room (one of them, there are 3) before it got to crowded to take pic's!
Some costumed lady's hanging out in the bar
Morticia with her very own drink.... yummmmmmy
And my friend Mike, relaxing in the bar, and torturing me with his cell phone that connects to facebook!!!! I was having major computer withdrawal pains!!!
All in all I had a good time. Got to see Kevin Sarbo close up and personal.... oh he is sooooooooo yummmmmmmmmy!!!!
Posted by Judith at 7:07 PM
Thursday, July 08, 2010
I'm ready for my Star Trek Convention! I guess, I've got all the stuff I need, my suitcase is packed, and I've got my non-allergy food ready to go.
Gas in the car, tire filled (got one of those slow leakers!) All I have left to do is put the stuff in the car tomorrow, wait for my sister to show up, and take off!
I decided NOT to wear a costume, but my doll is! I'm taking the new one Ophelia, cause she wears wigs, and I think the short brown one goes great with the outfit, I can have her look the way I want her too. I think she looks pretty nifty in her new Star Trek outfit!
And I actually remembered to pack my camera, so I'll have some pictures to post of the Convention!
Posted by Judith at 8:24 AM
Wednesday, July 07, 2010
Posted by Judith at 9:17 AM
Tuesday, July 06, 2010
If your thinking about getting someone to do some work around your house, this is a good article to check out!!!!
Tall Tales Your Contractor Tells
Even honest contractors occasionally play a bit fast and loose with the truth. All tradesmen are looking to maximize profits and minimize hassle -- and that can end up costing you extra money.
So don't take everything a contractor says as gospel, says David Fogt, chief of enforcement for the California Contractors State License Board. Try these strategies to neutralize three classic fibs without harming your working rapport.
What He Says: "I don't have any wiggle room on my price."
What He Means: "I'm hoping you'll pay my boom-time rates."
During the real estate bust, even top contractors have been forced to drop their bids as much as 10% to 40% to compete for the dwindling pool of jobs. Yours surely has too -- unless he thinks he has your business locked up at any price.
How to Respond: Get bids from a couple of other well-regarded companies -- and let your contractor know. Says Bob Peterson, a spokesman for the National Association of Home Builders: "That'll make me sharpen my pencil."
What He Says: "I need money upfront for materials."
What He Means: "I have to pay outstanding bills from other jobs."
Any well-established tradesman has 30 to 90 days to pay his suppliers. Asking you to prepay is a sign that he's either had his credit revoked or needs cash for something else (which could leave him short on your job). Regardless, you don't want to put your dough at risk if he suddenly can't complete the project.
How to Respond: Tell him you'll prepay the lesser of $1,000 or 10% of the price, says Fogt. If you have a costly special order that's non-returnable, offer to pay the supply house directly. If he balks? Another $1,000 or 10% will show him you're serious -- but don't cough up more.
What He Says: "You'll save on property taxes if you skip the permit for a small job."
What He Means: "My life would be easier if we did this job illicitly."
Even a small job requires a permit if you're installing walls, wiring, or plumbing lines. Inspectors check the crew's licensing, insurance, and code compliance. But if you aren't adding square footage or a major amenity like a new bathroom, you won't see a property tax hike, says Bill Carroll, president of the International Association of Assessing Officers.
How to Respond: Politely insist on a permit, and expect to pay $300 to $500 for the application fee and the contractor's time.
And don't let him talk you into getting the permit yourself. Then you bear all the responsibility for compliance -- and you shouldn't let a contractor off the hook that easily.
Posted by Judith at 1:05 PM
Hop over and check out this pretty give a way! But don't enter, please, really.... don't enter!!!! You DON'T want to win this one... IT'S MINE!!!! (evil wicked cackle!!!)
Awwww, go ahead and enter.... I'll forgive you if you win.... really I will.... promise not to cast a single spell on ya!!!
Posted by Judith at 10:41 AM