Saturday, July 27, 2013

Aromatic Songs of the 70s Part 7 - Chelsea Morning

Chelsea Morning Blend - Orange, Warm Butterscotch, Incense, Honey & Milk ....
Joni did record this song in 1969, so I chose a live version from 1970 for the blog,
in keeping with the 70s theme ;)  

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Midsummer in the Aromagarden Year 2

Last year I decided to devote the back garden to all aromatic plants. Much mulch was purchased, many plants transplanted.
This area has mints, roses, motherwort & more mint.

Some plants returned and some did not. Losses included 6 lavender plants, 1 sage, 1 lemongrass & 1 lemon balm.
Here we have some artemesia sages & MINT

I wanted photos of the garden before I started harvesting for distillations.There is 1 lavender plant hiding behind the mints somewhere.

I call this the fairy sanctuary area of the garden. Just a few stray mints in this area, mostly red thyme.

I seem to have 2 varieties of oregano, 1 that blooms pink; 1 white.

the white oregano

the first distillation I plan on doing is the lemon thyme, this stuff smells amazing.

This is my GIANT comfrey plant that Jackie from GloryBe Herbals gave me last year, it got huge!
Next summer I plan to scatter lots of seed, see what comes up and let mother nature take the wheel.

Monday, July 22, 2013

Aromatic Songs of the 70s Part 6 - Cinnamon Girl

Love Neil Young ; Crazy Horse, not so much! 
Too much electric guitar. 
This song however is pretty spicy ;)

Saturday, July 20, 2013

Aromatic Songs of the 70s Part 4 - Annie's Song

If one were to make a perfume for Annie, notes in the blend would include:

1- a night in the forest
2- the mountains in springtime
3- a walk in the rain
4- a storm in the desert
5- a sleepy blue ocean

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Sunday, July 14, 2013

Aromatic Songs of the 70's - Summer Breeze

Less than 2 weeks till I turn 40!
Another aromatic Seals & Croft song that brings my straight back to early childhood.

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

2000 sales Celebratatory Giveaway !

We are giving away 5 soaps & 5 soap dishes retail value of $50+ (includes shipping). This giveaway is in celebration of reaching 2000 sales at our etsy shop. Enter as many times as you like until 7/27!
I picked my 40th birthday as the prize winner drawing date because it will make my birthday that much funner :D

  a Rafflecopter giveaway

photo by Susan Cogrove Studios in Toronto, ON

Sunday, June 30, 2013

Aromatic Songs of the 70's Part 1. Seals & Crofts, East of Ginger Trees

Well here we are in the summer of 2013 which happens to be the 40th anniversary of my birth .... that's right I'm going to be 40 years old next month. (!!!!) I have been getting pretty nostalgic for the songs of my early childhood, which probably includes neo-natal memories as well. Because my love of music from approx. 1972-73 has never left  me. These song are still so comforting to me. I have decided in honor of this momentous anniversary to post a series of music videos throughout the summer: 'Aromatic Songs of the 70's'. I hope you enjoy them as much as I do.

Saturday, May 11, 2013

Easter in Florida


My wee one and I spent 2 weeks in Central Florida for Easter, it was a much needed break and my first vacation in 5 years;  must do this more often! Here are some botanical/nature pics and aromatically inclined highlights from the trip - with a few cute girl pics interspersed because it is Mom's Day tomorrow! 
Happiness is traveling with a sweet little girl, it makes everything a little more magical.Happy Mother's Day to all who mother.
Florida forests smell different.
Gators in the backyard
Giant Staghorn
Latana growing wild everywhere. I bought the oil once; smells like pickles.
Great Blue Heron
'Gators may be present' - at the children's playground!
It even rained once, for a little while
underwater observation
Cedar tree and crystal clear waters
trumpet flower
meeting mermaids
and finding lizards every where! Hope to be able to return soon, Florida is fun!

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Essential Oil DNA Music? YES!

I am obsessed with getting  a copy of this 'album'?! Stuart Mitchell has recreated the DNA of scent producing plants, rendering a  'musical DNA' of the plant chemistry.   

Here is a short documentary on the creating of the project. There are songs for : Mandarin Orange, Ylang Ylang, Helichrysum, Coconut, Clove, Euclayptus, Juniper, Lavender, Petitgrain and Rose.

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Tim Blakley Q & A

In 1999 I had the pleasure of attending the Medicinal Herb Conference in Cooperstown NY and hearing world renouned aromatherapist Tim Blakley speak in person. I was immediately filled with a an admiration for this man and his character, manner and of course, knowledge. Sponsored by the Center for Agricultural Development and Entrepreneurship, the event took place at the The Farmer's Museum in Cooperstown NY a town most famous for being home of the national Baseball Hall of Fame. As a side note, it is also where my first son was born, in the Birthing Center at Bassett Hospital! He is 16 this year and enjoys having that little claim to fame. 

Anyways, Tim now serves as staff aromatherapist for Aura Cacia Aromatherapy and last week he held a live Q & A on his facebook page. So I thought I would condense the best info from the session on this blog, because Tim is a wealth of common sense information on aromatherapy. Here he is, enjoying the euphoric scent of a field of organic Ylang Ylang trees in Madagascar.

The focus of the Q & A was using essential oils in the workplace. All of the following are direct quotes from Tim ; Read On ~ !

 'Any oil you use in a salve or balm has to be in it for a specific purpose. Generally you don't use harsh oils like thyme, oregano, cinnamon leaf, etc. unless you have a good reason. I use lavender in almost every salve I make though.'

'For the afternoon 'blah's you have several choices. Let's start with peppermint for short term invigoration but in the long run a continual diffused citrus is ideal.'

'For subtle the first trick is to have a small fan diffuser. These are battery run and they simply blow air over a pad you place oil(s) on. You can direct it right at your face so it’s easy to control the direction of the flow. It will still fill up the air around your workers eventually but because you are blowing it right at your face you don’t need as much oil.'

 'Now if you are feeling a bit of stress and need to mellow out a bit, then we use some different oils. I’m an old fashioned guy, I like lavender. To me it’s just perfect for a diffuser. Sometimes I’ll add a drop of another oil to it, maybe clary sage or a bit of Neroli. When I’m really feeling a bit pinched I like to rub a little Rose Absolute Precious(already pre-blended in Jojoba carrier oil) under my nose and maybe behind my ear.'

 'Though seldom discussed, keeping your work place ‘clean’ during the winter cold and flu season can be a challenge. We’ve discussed diffusers which of course help clean the air but the trick part is your hands. We often can’t go to the bathroom every time we touch some shared office instrument to wash our hands so we need to have a simple way to do this at your desk. A simple lavender/tea tree spritzer can be effective.
 Lavender and Tea Tree Hand Spritzer
50 drops of lavender
20 drops of tea tree
Mix into 1 oz of water in a spritzer bottle, shake and spray on your hand when needed'

'When work gets the best of me and head is just bursting, I like to put a little diluted peppermint on my temples, a little diluted lavender, and then I put my feet in hot water. To the hot water I add a little Rosemary, warms up my feet ever more, gets my blood flowing '

 'During the morning hours my favorite blend is peppermint and rosemary, two very complementary oils that will leave your mind fresh and your body invigorated.'

'Also at work you occasionally need to improve your ‘scent’. I often zip into bathrooms while traveling and get out my rose absolute precious(in jojoba oil) and lavender. Seven drops of Rose and 3 drops of lavender, half in one armpit, half in the other, and I’m good to go!'

'At night, before bed, I often take a bath and use Rose, German Chamomile, lavender and Ylang Ylang in my bath. Ylang Ylang really slows down your brain, very relaxing at night, my favorite before bed.'

'I also spritz my pillows in my hotel rooms with a lavender blend, 30 drops of lavender in an ounce of water, shake and spray.  There is always confusion about lavender.... What is Spike Lavender, what is Lavandin, etc.  Spike lavender is a different species than the common English lavender that we all know. It grows taller and is more productive but unlike english lavender it's loaded with camphor, this makes it a very different oil. Spike lavender is crossed with English Lavender to create a hybrid, Lavandin, which is also high in camphor. It is unfortunately often sold as 'lavender' as it's less expensive. One of my new favorites is Tasmanian Lavender. It comes from a single farm in Tasmania that has been selecting out 'sweeter' smelling plants for nearly 100 years and have thus created an oil that is simply put, soft, sweet and lovely.'

' When I"m feeling just a little too stuffy I like a blend of peppermint and frankincense diluted with a little carrier oil right under my nose.
I also like to diffuse frankincense into my airspace at the same time, almost everyone likes the scent of frankincense.' 

'Lemon Balm is a very nice oil, calming, soothing, not overpowering in scent when diluted. My mother likes it when there is a little scent in the room and sometimes I'll rub just a little tiny bit on her feet or hands.'

'When we smell an oil it goes right to the part of our brain, the limbic part, where our memory is centered. Scent and memory are very closely aligned and you can use this to your advantage. If you have an oil that you like, one that makes you feel good, you can use the scent memory association at any time to make you feel better. I call this your ‘go to’ oil and you can use it whenever you feel a bit uncomfortable or overwhelmed. I have a handful of ‘go to’ oils and my favorites are lavender, rose and especially vanilla. Vanilla simply makes me feel better. Kids also respond to scent/memory and I’ve found that they generally love vanilla over just about any other oil.'

'I'm not sure any oil will guarantee a stress free day but I start everyday with Peppermint. It surely gives you a boost in the morning, helps with concentration but also tends to reduce some of your frustration. If you have to drive to work, nothing is better than peppermint in the car. During the morning hours my favorite blend is peppermint and rosemary, two very complementary oils that will leave your mind fresh and your body invigorated. '

'Rose is one of the most famous and popular oils historically for facial use. I often use it with lavender, together they are cleansing, astringent, soothing and ideal for most facial 'conditions'. I often use Tamanu as the carrier oils for those oils as well.'

'If you are standing on your feet a lot at work I’d suggest you try a little peppermint. A drop or two on your socks before you put your shoes on will cool your down and invigorate you for hours! It feels great, especially on hot days. I had a co-worker who once put 9 drops of peppermint on her foot accidentally while we were at a natural products show. She was overwhelmed by it, too stimulated in the foot! Just a couple drops is plenty for virtually the whole day.'

'Tea Tree  is of course still a top 5 selling oil though nowhere near in the same category as lavender or peppermint. Its a very versatile oil and since I'm a plant junkie I use it in my little nursery regularly. I clean my old pots and flats with tea tree to make them ready for the next use. It's an ideal gargling oil. I do a mix of Tea Tree, Peppermint and Myrrh and I always gargle in a little fat.
Why fat, well the oils emulsify in the fat and thus swish around your mouth much better than if you used water. I use half and half on the road(free at Starbucks) and at home I use soy or rice milk. They are much better than gargling in water. I also soak my toothpicks in an oil blend, usually tea tree and peppermint. It really makes the toothpicks much more 'productive.'

Thanks Tim, for answering all those questions! Aura Cacia hosts one of these chats every month at their Facebook Page . And I do want to try that Tasmanian Lavender it sounds dreamy!


Sunday, February 10, 2013

Future Home of Adirondack Aromatherapy

When we started our business a few years ago Mr. ADKaromatherapy & I would drive around the region pointing out various locales and saying "look its the future home of Adirondack Aromatherapy!" Jokingly of course, as we have spent the past 3 years working out of studio space in our home - first a remodeled bathroom, then a small spare bedroom off the kitchen. In reality having our own space to work was a long term goal, or so we thought.

Around Christmas / New Year I started seriously pining away for a shop of our own. After the hubub of the holiday died down I went to get my hair done, who knew this simple everyday errand would result in the signing of a lease for our very first storefront? Here is the breakdown of the whirlwind of events the past couple weeks.

January 14th - Hairdresser told me of space available at the Glens Falls Shirt Factory, a local artisans/crafters mall.
January 15th - Went to look at the space. (had never even visited this 'shirt factory' place before!)
January 16th - sent out email inquiries to persons of authority in said Shirt Factory
January 17th - signed the lease
January 18th - begins the flurry of activity dismantling the studio, soaping equipment and relocating.
Much heavy lifting was involved.
February 1st - official start of lease date
February 9th - (yesterday) OPENING DAY!

PHEW.  Now for a few shots of the new space!

 This supermodel graciously donated her time to help with opening day.

 Where the magick happens...

Mr. ADKaromatherapy's soap display.

 I had WAY too much fun arranging the display cabinets. 

We are on the 1st floor on the Shirt Factory in Glens Falls NY corner of Cooper & Lawrence Streets, one of the very first shops when you walk in (Suite #113). We plan to be open Tuesdays - Saturdays 11am - 5 pm. So stop by if you are local or in the Lake George / Adirondack Region vacationing. Just follow your nose!

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Bridal Perfume Party

Another little just for fun post - going through old photos today. This is a perfume party I put together for a wedding shower in Florida, the bride was kind enough to send me this lovely picture!


Smell the Love!

Just Some Fun with Photography & Photoshoppin'

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Wasting Not - Honey, Lavender, Goats Milk ETC.!

I made lavender infused honey/honeys for friends and family this xmas. This gorgeous lavender was from etsy shop :, it arrived beautifully packaged with lovely ribbons and bows and even wrapped in lavender tissue paper! 

I was inspired to do something with honey this xmas after recently reading 'The Secret Life of Bees" so I took this little photo in honor of the book. I also had a big mess of lavender buds on the counter and sticky honey left at the bottom of the honey pots when I was finished. So I melted a pound of goats milk soap and tossed 1/2 a pound into each empty honey pot and stirred it in reallllllly good. Swept up & added the stray lavender buds when the honey was fully incorporated. I wound up with a very sticky soap batter that I poured into 6 molds, didn't waste 1 precious drop of honey or a single lavender bud! This soap smells vaguely of honey and lavender but is otherwise unscented and was gifted to friends who had recently had a baby. Amazing lather on this soap and so good for winter skin & fresh baby skin; perfect to use as a shaving bar too!  

Saturday, January 5, 2013

If You Need Help in crisis.

Please keep these numbers on record somewhere in your home, you never know when you are going to need one of them.  

The National Suicide Prevention Hotline: 1-800-273-TALK (1-800-273-8255)
(For the Deaf and Hard of Hearing, TTY: 1-800-799-4TTY (1-800-799-4889))

National Child Abuse Hotline: 1-800-4-A-CHILD (1-800-422-4453)
(For the Deaf and Hard of Hearing, TTY: Please use your local relay service number)

Domestic Violence Hotline 1-800-799-SAFE (1-800-799-7233)
(For the Deaf and Hard of Hearing, TTY: 1-800-787-SAFE) (1-800-787-7233)

National Runaway Switchboard 1-800-RUN-AWAY (1-800-726-2929)
(For the Deaf and Hard of Hearing, TTY: 1-800-621-0394)

National Center for Missing and Exploited Children 1-800-THE-LOST (1-800-843-5678)
(For the Deaf and Hard of Hearing, TTY: 1-800-826-7653 [message] or use your local relay service number)

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Small Business Advice for 2013

This list is compiled from a facebook post.  HAPPY 2013 to everyone! Here is some advice from small business owners, from people who have been in business for a few months to already established businesses. Hopefully some of what is said here will resonate with you and inspire you if you are working towards building a successful business.


Switch from 'High End' to 'Value' products

 "hear" and "trust" that inner voice of intuition. 

 do good + be good =get good, never give up, and believe you CAN do it

 buy local, and be willing to build a business around your passions. 

 good & honest customer service. If you forget about your customers your business will fail, they are your bread and butter and your lifeline.

  a small inconvenience on your part may mean the world to your client. 

Don't muddy your business by trying to make money, stand true to your mission and the 'success' will follow. 

You can't please everybody. You have to stand for what you do best, what you believe, and what you set out to do. 

Customer service, with a rapid response time. 

Care about people. Your customers, your employees, your neighbors. If you take care of people, when you share your vision with them, they will help you succeed.

 when times get tough ~ expand & diversify

 Treat everyone that walks through your door like an old friend, smile because you love what you do, and go above and beyond every day.

 create an initial business plan then update it every year. It needs to contain a focused direction of the buisness for each quarter plus an quaterly earnings goal. Small steps or benchmarks to achieve the bigger vision.

 "do unto others as you would have others do unto you"

 The customer isn't always right, but the customer is always a top priority.

 Every little step you make is big. It either works or is a lesson learned.

  Expense control. Decrease overhead.

 Branding is super important. Input your name, logo etc everywhere you can. Make yourself recognizeable. And social network like crazy. Remember to really reach out to your market. If your primary customer is under 38 that social networking is particularly important.

  I can not please everyone, and I am not making best friends. I am running a business. It was a really, really hard lesson to learn. And one I struggle with daily.

  I am not a website. I am a human being! I keep the doors open. 

Your time is very valuable!! Stay organized to manage your time better and create better work flow. Don't allow your self to stray from your goals or spend too much time on something that really isn't going to benefit that goal in the end...even if it seems like a great idea in the moment....