Blessings in Disguise
As the daylight hours shorten and the weather turns cold, we find our thoughts turning inwards, as they are often found to do this time of year. While in some ways we miss the long, warm days of summer, we here at the apothecary also find ourselves often grateful for the slower pace that winter brings... the chance to become more introspective on the long, dark evenings. The holiday season draws out various emotions in each of us-- joy and hope for some, challenge and stress for others-- but one opportunity it presents us all with is the chance to focus on what we are thankful for in our lives, what brings us each light and ease.
For Blake Her loved ones bring the most joy. Seeing the excitement and wonder at the season sparkle in her youngest's eyes is a constant reminder that the world is full of magic. Her older children are in-or-near their college years and so there is also a deep gratitude for this phase of life when all three of her children are still home and part of daily living. Before long, one and then two of her babes will be off on their own, but that time is not here quite yet and she is soaking it in while she can!
For Rupam Fall and definitely the winter season mean reflection and "pulling back" time for me. And if I could possibly manage it, very short working days! There is always so much to do on a forest homestead in winter that it takes a really strong intention to take time out from the business and our budding farm these days. We plan to close down for the last 2 weeks of the year, giving us all the much deserved rest and relaxation time we so deserve after the whopper of a year we all had in 2022 : Big challenges, big changes, big learnings and big time gratitudes all around: I am grateful for the challenges showing themselves as blessings in disguise even when it takes time for me to realize the gifts inherent in the hardships. So grateful for the deeper space available inside BECAUSE of the hardships this year! There is nothing more deepening than digging down inside to see the beauty and balance in the middle of a storm. It keeps me humble for sure, as well as showing me clearly the places I haven't accepted and loved in myself. Grateful for a new-found level of patience because there was no other way but to be more patient. So thankful for this beautiful and sacred profession of "medicine-making"! Boy, does it help to hit the "pause" button on personal trials and tribulations!! Beyond grateful to all the amazing clients this year... being able to lend a supporting hand to you all while learning even more to "step into your shoes!" Thank you for trusting me to walk with you a little while on your healing journey.. Grateful for the opportunity to "walk my talk" in taking care of an elder! My mom, a spritely 85 year-old, broke her right foot in June and has lived with us from that fateful day on. Total life changes for all of us as we navigate being together (Tunde', mom and I) in our house. Keala and I were thrown into intense "growing up" work while Tunde' seems to be a cooling and soothing influence to both of us. You are my hero, sweetheart!! And lastly and probably most importantly, I am so grateful that the storm in my personal life "tendered" me to be softer and a little kinder to myself in what definitely was one of the most challenging years of my life. Paps, a big Bussi on the invisible space waves to wherever you are: I feel you and I am so thankful that you took on the role of my father in this play of life this time around! Bon voyage my friend and we will meet again... no doubt in my heart! I truly hope that reading Blake's and my "ending of the year" gratitudes inspires you to write and reflect on your own year and nudges you into the deepening, ripening place of seeing the silver linings around your hardships as well. May your days and nights be full of tender love for yourself, radiating kindness and tenderness to all there is around you. May it be so! And last but not least here are some of our product suggestions that Blake and I are using to keep balanced and healthy during this winter season:
1) Elderberry unsweetened or Mulled Spice Elderberry Syrup together with Vitamin C, B12, Zinc, D3 (by Vimergy) The above 5 goodies are our basic daily "must haves" to support and strengthen the immune system, preventing colds and flus for us and our families.
2) Fresh Ashwagandha tincture In our minds: the big equalizer! A powerhouse adaptogen, helping the entire body/mind to deal with stress on all levels.
3) Ambrosia tincture This remedy is geared to keep you (or support you back to) your "sweet spot": Creative, tuned-in, synchronized with a partner, an art form, dance, meditation or a group endeavor. Yummy :)) 4) HERBAL TEAS:
- Muttchen's Delight This was my dad's house tea, he made and drank this religiously! A great digestive, immune booster, stimulating circulation and soothing to the nervous system! Plus it helps rid the body of accumulated fluoride! Yay, Paps! - Traditionally Yours One of Rupam's favorites! Full of minerals and vitamins, supports a more alkaline pH, flushing out toxins via the kidneys and strengthening to teeth, skin, nails and hair. - Divinely Tulsi Another amazing adaptogen! Shortening colds and flus and lessening their symptoms. There is a reason this plant is beloved by the entire Indian culture: A sacred plant often planted at the entrance of one's home. Bringing ease and humor to maybe a difficult situation. - Earthly Roots A remedy for cleansing blood, supporting the liver's function and improving peristaltic movement- aka pooping better and daily :)) A safe diuretic.. Warning: this tea is bitter!! That's why it's so good for the liver! There is a saying in Europe: "Have your Bitters and be sweet or have your Sweets and be bitter!!" :))
5) Fresh California Poppy tincture Both Rupam and Blake really lean on this remedy! It's fantastic for relaxing one's nervous system before sleep, making it a wonderful sleeping aid! In a smaller dose (3 to 11 drops) it can help to ease anxiety, help release muscle tension during the day and help to sooth our "hamster-mind".
6) Fresh St John's Wort tincture Again one of Rupam's favorites: This plant has such an incredible relationship with the sun/light that it can help us "remember" our own light, making it one of the best remedies for melancholy and depression as well as a general nervous system tonic (spirit dose 3-11 drops 2-3 x daily). It strengthens our 3rd chakra (or energy center), helping us to find our personal power and determination to rise above challenges..
7) Phoenix Moon Bitters / Swedish Bitters Bitters!!! The forgotten flavor! Supporting liver function and digestion are two of the most important elements on the healing journey. Bitters are famous for doing both. Swedish Bitters have been around Europe and proven themselves for 100's of years! Recent events have made it difficult to source 4 of the core ingredients from Germany, encouraging us to create our own (and more locally grown) formula. And after one year, Phoenix Moon was born! Bold and delightful with a spicy kick in the finish... it is a definite must-try! We think it's one of the yummiest Bitters out there! Just sayin' LOL
8) And of course our dental line: One Drop Only Tooth Elixir and our Daily Dental Rinse Our bestsellers and we are proud of them! Non-abrasive, full of essential oils, flower essences, gem elixirs, herbal extracts and LOVE in every bottle. It took years to perfect this formula and we are always continuing to search for even better core ingredients like creating our own organic mineral soap in-house with the help of "Luminance Skincare". We are not quite there yet but hoping to give it a test run sometime soon...
Super gentle on teeth and gum lines, generating more circulation in gum tissue and packs great cleansing action! Hundreds of testimonials from our customers and dental professionals alike over the years have made these two products a favorite! So many blessings, Us here at the apothecary :)