Wellbeing

Lessons from a Primrose

After a shaky few days, taking my morning cup of tea out in the garden this morning felt like an act of restoration. Walking barefoot across the lawn, moving from the shade into the sun I came to sit down in front of a small patch of Primroses. I noticed that the petals of most of the flowers were wilting now, nibbled (not by me) and turning brown in patches as they were reaching the end of their blooming period here in the UK.

Their name translates from the Latin meaning ‘first’ and these little pioneers led the way, opening their delicate yellow petals to a cold and tired world just a few months before. To the earliest of Spring days they brought a reminder of renewal and hope from the woodland floors.

They hold such an important role in our ecosystem – as an indicator of ancient woodland they offer an important early nectar source for insects, most notably brimstone and small tortoiseshell butterflies.

As I spent time observing these precious little gems this morning, I became aware of their niche. Flowering early, they bring joy and valuable nectar sources before they become overshadowed by larger plants on the woodland floor. They don’t bloom all year round, or attempt to be like another flower. They just bloom when conditions are good for them and then retreat when they are not.

As a human being, I often find myself trying to fulfil so many roles. An array of options are always available to us that it can be easy to stray from our true nature, or feel less than in comparison with others. Do you sometimes feel as though you should always be blooming, or be more like someone else? If so, perhaps spend a few moments just observing a plant in nature and be reminded of her lessons of embracing our individuality and niche. Just another little dose of nature’s medicine, always available to us.

With love and plant magick,

Nicola

Wellbeing, Wheel of the Year

Spring Equinox

In astronomical terms, the Spring Equinox marks the beginning of the Spring season in the Northern hemisphere. This year; in 2021 the Spring Equinox falls on Sunday March 21st.

The word ‘equinox’ comes from the Latin word meaning ‘equal night’ and twice a year, on both the Spring and Autumn equinoxes, night and day length are in balance. The light has slowly but surely been increasing from it’s lowest point at the Winter Solstice in December. It will now continue to expand, overtaking the hours of darkness, until it reaches its peak on our longest day at the Summer Solstice on June 20th.

In the natural world the Spring Equinox heralds a time of birth, renewal, new beginnings and an increased energy. As the light increases, the days warmer conditions become more favourable for life to return with vigour. The time of year can be symbolic for us too as a time to shake off the Winter and welcome new ideas and energy.

Being aware of what is going on in our outer world can help us to connect to and learn more about our inner worlds. In this article I will discuss where we are currently in the seasonal cycle and suggest ways in which we can use this to cultivate inner reflection and growth.

Element: Air

This time of the year is associated with the element of air. The energy of air can encourage movement, change, new beginnings and a freshness in ideas or perspective. It can bring lightness into our mind and bodies and dissolve the stagnation that may have gathered over the winter months.

As with all the elements, air can possess more and less helpful qualities. When in balance this energy can feel like a ‘breath of fresh air’ in our lives. It may feel cleansing, stimulating and renewing. When out of balance this energy may leave us feeling rushed, unsettled, overwhelmed and with racing thoughts.

Outer observations

The word that resonates with this season for me is growth. This time of year is a feast for the eyes, ears, heart and soul. It is impossible to spend time outdoors and not witness signs of colour and life bursting out. Green rushes back into the colour palette, filtering its way through the ground and out through unravelling leaf buds. The energy of birdsong alerts us to a new season and as the first flowers open, their delicate yet vibrant petals uplift and expand.

Other words associated with this time of year include: birth, renewal, life force, opening, expansion, growth, new beginnings.

Inner reflections

The time of year can be a guide for inner reflection. It may help to spend some time in nature, and just notice and observe the season that we are in. What words would you use to describe it? Be aware of what feelings it brings up for you. This will be different for us all, depending on where we are in our journey.

Our Spring Equinox Wellbeing Guide is now available to download for free. It contains journal prompts, and a guided mindfulness practice to help you to connect with the energy of the season.

Wellbeing, Wheel of the Year

Imbolc

Traditionally celebrated over 1st and 2nd of February in the Northern Hemisphere, Imbolc marks the earliest signs of Spring and falls midway between the Winter Solstice and the Spring Equinox. At this time, the earth is beginning to awaken from Winter’s slumber. Light is increasing, encouraging changes in the behaviour of our animal friends. Most growth is still occurring in the darkness of the Earth’s belly but some little pioneer plants bloom first, signalling the quickening of the year.

Imbolc is a period of transition. The inward focus of the Winter months making way to a more external focus of growth once again. A tender time where we tentatively begin looking outwards towards the coming months. It can feel challenging or overwhelming particularly if we are feeling under nourished.

This can be a good time to assess where we require more rest or support. To clear space in our homes and lives to make way for what’s to come. And to reflect on the things that light us up, restore our energy and tend to our ground ready to welcome the tender new shoots of Spring.

For guided Mindfulness practices and journal prompts inspired by the season of Imbolc, you can download our Imbolc Wellbeing Guide now.

Botanicals

Mindful Jars

We wanted to introduce you to our newest creation, our Mindful Jar trio.

These little glass jars are full of homegrown and wild foraged botanicals intended to bring you a mindful moment at home, work or on the go.

Our senses have long been used in mindfulness & grounding practices. They offer us a route back to the present moment when our minds have wandered, our focus is lost or we are experiencing anxiety, worry or feel ungrounded.

By bringing our attention to what we can feel, smell and see in our surroundings unites us back to the present moment.

Smell in particular is a powerful sense and can impact our wellbeing. Certain smells can lift our mood, evoke positive memories or energize our bodies.

With this in mind we wanted to create a visual and aromatic aid that can support us with grounding and connecting with the present moment.


Our Mindful Jar trio includes:

  • Cedar to ground, protect & uplift
  • Lavender, Rose, wild Chamomile & Feverfew to calm, soothe & nurture
  • Pine, Lemon Verbena, Eucalyptus & Mint to revive, awaken & invigorate

You can find our Mindful Jar trio in our Etsy store now

Wellbeing, Wheel of the Year

Samhain

Samhain is a seasonal festival that falls roughly half way between the Autumn Equinox and the Winter Solstice. It is the third harvest festival (following Lammas and Autumn Equinox) celebrating the time to collect the last of the year’s berries and nuts. Samhain is the end of the growth part of the cycle and the origin of Halloween. It can be thought of as the birth of the Winter and dark half of the year.

As the light wanes, this time of year is associated with an increase in darkness, a time where the seed has now fallen deep into the dark earth and rests before it begins a new cycle of life. Trees and plants let go of their old growth and we may feel a call to honour people and things that have been lost.

We can sometimes find this time of year somewhat uncomfortable. Generally society and us humans have a preference for the warmth, light and growth. Death and decay, whilst essential can be painful and something we may wish to avoid.

Aligning ourselves with the seasons, is to learn the lessons of the natural world. To practice letting go of things, allowing them to nourish new parts of us and our lives.

Connecting to the cycle of the seasons can help us to reflect on changes in our own mood and energy which naturally ebbs and flows. We have created a new seasonal guide for the Samhain season that runs from 31st October up to the Winter Solstice on 21st December. You can download it below. It includes a mindfulness practice and journal prompts that can be used at any time throughout the season. If you do find this helpful, or wish to share any insights you have whilst using the guide we would love to hear from you.

Samhain blessings

Wheel of the Year

Samhain Celebration Box

As the wheel of the year turns towards Samhain, we have been busy creating an offering that is intended to help you honour and welcome the new season with a little plant and candle magick!

Samhain is the third and final harvest and the end of the growth period. The light continues to wane and winter’s presence is born. Our Samhain box is centred around protection and resilience with a touch of magick as we journey into the darkness.

Find them in our ETSY store.

Continue reading “Samhain Celebration Box”
Botanicals

About your Smoulder Stick


Smoulder sticks are bundles of herbs bound together and dried for the purpose of burning. Burning herbs is one of the earliest forms of aromatherapy and has been practiced for thousands of years. You may be familiar with the term smudge stick or smudging, which refers to a specific Indigenous American sacred smoke ceremony. Most cultures across the world have burned herbs and dried plants at some point in their history.

All of our smoulder sticks are intuitively handcrafted with a blend of homegrown organic herbs & wild foraged plants local or naturalised in the UK, each with their own unique qualities.

As the herbs burn and smoulder an aromatic smoke is released containing many of the beneficial compounds and energies of the plant. The element of fire also symbolises energy, transformation and clearing of unwanted energies.

We do not add any fragrance to our sticks. They are intended for the enjoyment of the natural plant properties rather than as fragrant incense. Plants will all burn differently and getting to know your stick can be a mindful experience!

How to use

Hold the end of your stick just above a candle until it smoulders or catches alight. Depending on the plants in your stick it can react very variably. It may produce flames especially on the first light which is normal but always use gently with care and attention and a fireproof dish underneath to catch any falling embers. Once lit, after the few seconds, blow the flame out as you would a candle allowing your stick to smoulder away and release aromatic smoke into your space. Place your smouldering stick in a heatproof dish or bowl.

Working with plants in this way can enhance a meditation or relaxation process. Observing the smoke as you breathe deeply and relax, allowing the plants to support your intentions and clear what no longer serves you. You may also wish to move your smoulder stick around your space to bring the cleansing smoke to particular areas of your room/home.

Different plants burn at different rates. Sometimes your stick will extinguish by itself. You can light it again if you would like to continue enjoying the smoke.

When you are ready to extinguish your stick, hold the smouldering end against the heat proof bowl or dish until fully out, a layer of sand in your dish makes this easier too.

Always use your stick in a well ventilated area and with a heatproof bowl or dish to collect any embers that will fall from your stick.

Please be aware that plants are powerful and not all are recommended for use during pregnancy or breast feeding, if you have certain health conditions or around pets. Please always check the full blend list and consult a specialist before use. If you experience any adverse reactions, discontinue immediately.

Some people choose not to burn their sticks at all. If you prefer, you can hang yours above your bed or place on your altar to enjoy the energy of the plants or use in mindful pratices.

How to care for your smoulder stick

You should be able to use your stick over many occasions. The herbs burn best when there is some air between them. You may find as you get closer to where the stick has been tied that it doesn’t smoulder as well. When this happens snip the next twine tie off and continue burning your stick.

If the end of the stick becomes too charred, it may not light as easily, in which case you can clear some of the blackened bits by pressing down against your fireproof dish or even snipping the ends if necessary.

Keeping your stick dry and out of direct sunlight will preserve its qualities for longer.

If you have any further questions we are always happy to hear for you.

Happy smouldering!

Our Mindful Magick Smoulder stick in action