Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Herbal Dream Pillows/ Earth Loom

Last night was my Herb Society meeting. Of course this being October out came "the" hat. I made a new one this year for my daughter to wear when Trick or Treating with her boys.
I have to laugh, my mom always use to make summer hats to cover her hair while at the beach, she would have liked to be a milliner. Now, her daughter making witches hats!

Last night at the meeting we studied about herbal dream pillows. I made these a few years ago with the grandsons and it was unanimous all slept much better. I first learned about the pillows at a herb conference when Jim Long, a respected herbalist spoke about them. He researched and used them for years and finally wrote a book on the subject. A little background from the book: "The European craft of making dream pillows goes back several centuries. There is much evidence, both historical and modern, that pleasant fragrances from herbs and flower do have a positive effect on dreaming".
There is so much more information in this book if your interested he also has a blog.
He goes on to list several quotes from past centuries extolling the virtues for sleep pillows.

My other book I found reference to them is this book "Healing Secrets of the Native Americans".

A couple of pages from the Native America book on the use of Hops for sleeping.

I love this paragraph on President Abraham Lincoln.

At our meeting we had lots of dried herbs to choose from. There are many different herb blends,  peaceful slumbers, convalescent rest, romantic evening, inspiring creativity, and many more.
We mixed the correct herbs for peaceful slumbers.

Some of the herbs we used were sweet hops flowers for relaxation and peacefulness.

Mugwort for increased clarity to remember your dreams, while also encouraging relaxation.

We also added catnip, chamomile, lots of lavender, rose petals, rosemary, and mint.
With this blend how can you not have a wonderful nights sleep.

Mixed well, then we filled little cloth bags for everyone to take home and tuck in their pillow case.
About 1/2 cup per bag is all you need.

Last weekend was peak color season here, the maple leaves were calling me. I went out in our woods and collected some of the reddest,

also a few sumac branches. The sumac leaves glowed.

The loom was patiently waiting, looking kind of dull,
not anymore!

Now it's in full color, ready for the Season.
Not much room left for weaving this year, I hope to weave a row of oak leaves and the final row of winter greens. Then the weaving will have completed the growing cycle of plants this year, starting with dandelions and ending with the greens.
What a wonderful time I had weaving on it. (Oh, and Mother Nature loved weaving too!).

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Catching up in October

Where has October gone, I don't know. I've been meaning to post but never seem to have any extra minutes.
So from last week, I finally had one of my summer Moon flower plants bloom. I planted the seedlings late and with the cold summer I got only one bud which took forever to open and when it did it was with the Full moon last week. If I was only going to have one flower this was perfect timing.

What a wonderful moon week, the blood moon was visible here and at a good time. The grand kids and I went out early to see it.

Then that night we drove around to get the best picture of the Hunters Moon.

It also was time to decorate the house. Fist, Fall garlands and ceramic pumpkins on the piano.

The kitchen hutch gets a new look with a Halloween quilted table runner, herbal vinegars,

and velvet pumpkins and pears.

Wool pumpkin people tucked inside.

Several years ago I made this wool wall hanging from wool I naturally dyed (all except the black).

My favorite Halloween memory from childhood, my paper-mache pumpkin now used to hold napkins.

Last weekend we went camping at our local State Park. Every year they have a Fall Festival, starting with trailer decorating contests and ending with hay rides and trick-or treating. We have a large group of family and friends camping.. This year we made candle holders to decorate our tables with. A garland of leaves from the local craft store, old jars and mod podge. The most important part to make this a successful project is to pull the plastic "veins" off the leaves before trying to glue them on.

We didn't coat the top of the leaves with the glue but we did coat the whole jar. Some of the leaves were velvet, they looked beautiful in the candle light.
This idea came from Pinterest. Oh, we love Pinterest!

Next pumpkins in my flower pots,

my favorite for the season, black and orange pansies in a crock.

Fall garland around the light.

And the porch is ready for the season.

Back to the campground, the weather was perfect, the water beautiful and the grand kids happy.
They fished and fished.

Catching and releasing.

Lots of hiking.

My husband and daughter.

And my grandson taking a selfie.

Last night I had my girlfriends over for dinner. I pulled out my good china. My mom bought them 65 years ago for her wedding china. She was raised in town and when she got married they were moving out into the "woods".  Not really far out but that's how it felt to her.

So while all her girlfriends were buying rose patterned china she bought these pine bough and leaf dishes. Long ago she gave them to me. I use them for special occasions but hate the fact that I'm afraid to put them in the dishwasher and have to hand wash them.

I had my friends over for hot soup, salad, crackers and cheeses. Laura made this cute jack- o-lantern cheese ball.
Another idea from pinterest, if your not familiar with this site google it and enjoy.

 Laura also made me this wonderful witch wall hanging, it has a companion piece of a cat but after paper piecing this for hours she gave me the cat pattern to do myself! LOL, Next year.

And on to the next holiday, Jamie paper pieced this cute Thanksgiving wall hanging.

  • Deb Hardman
  • Allie Aller
  • Jenny Bowker Cairo