Diffuse

Take Your Shoes Off – Relaxing Diffusing Blend

relaxing and diffusing essential oilsExperimenting with my blending skills, I discovered some great pairings that have made it to my ‘new favorites’ list for diffusing. I love using bergamot essential oil as the top note of my diffusing blends now. Unlike all my other citrus choices, it always seems to offer a calming sense to the blends I’ve tried. I’m not alone in this – researchers are diffusing bergamot as well. Scientists recently studied the psychological and physiological effects of inhaled bergamot essential oil vapor. 1 Not sure if the test subjects were relaxing on the couch, shoes off and unwinding at the end of the day. But they probably wanted to!

Enjoy this blend designed to reduce tension and stress, enhance mood, and create a relaxing and soothing aroma.
relaxing and diffusing essential oilsExperimenting with my blending skills, I discovered some great pairings that have made it to my ‘new favorites’ list for diffusing. I love using bergamot essential oil as the top note of my diffusing blends now. Unlike all my other citrus choices, it always seems to offer a calming sense to the blends I’ve tried. I’m not alone in this – researchers are diffusing bergamot as well. Scientists recently studied the psychological and physiological effects of inhaled bergamot essential oil vapor. 2 Not sure if the test subjects were relaxing on the couch, shoes off and unwinding at the end of the day. But they probably wanted to!

Enjoy this blend designed to reduce tension and stress, enhance mood, and create a relaxing and soothing aroma.

Take Your Shoes Off - Relaxing Diffusing Blend
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    Servings
    1
    Servings
    1
    Take Your Shoes Off - Relaxing Diffusing Blend
    Print Recipe
      Servings
      1
      Servings
      1
      Ingredients
      • 3 drops Bergamot Essential Oil Citrus bergamia
      • 5 drops Cedarwood Essential Oil Juniperus virginiana
      • 3 drops Hawaiian Sandalwood Essential Oil Santalum paniculatum
      Servings:
      Instructions
      1. Blends benefit by mingling for a few hours before diffusing.
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      Diffuse

      Cardamom Chai Evening Blend

      I love chai lattes – but trying to get back into shape, I have had to give up the super-sweet, super-spice drink.  According to a recent Huffington Post article, one Starbuck chai has more sugar than a Snickers! A Dunkin’s medium-sized Vanilla Chai has 45 grams of sugar.

      I made a few tests and am now diffusing this chai blend.  And its pretty close to a steaming cup of the real thing!

      Cardamom Chai Evening Blend
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      Spicy chai blend perfect for evening diffusing.
      Servings
      1
      Servings
      1
      Cardamom Chai Evening Blend
      Print Recipe
      Spicy chai blend perfect for evening diffusing.
      Servings
      1
      Servings
      1
      Ingredients
      • 2 drops cardamom essential oil
      • 2 drops black pepper essential oil
      • 1 drop clove essential oil
      • 1 drop ginger essential oil
      • 1 drop cassia essential oil
      • 1 drop vanilla extract optional
      • 1 drop wild orange essential oil optional
      Servings:
      Recipe Notes

      I used cassia essential oil rather than cinnamon bark essential oil -- I feel cassia blend better with other spicy oils like clove or black pepper when diffusing.

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      Massage

      Essential Oils in Deep Tissue and Sports Massage Practice

      While yardwork may not be your idea of “sport,” our family took the first really nice weekend in Austin this spring to fill leaf bags, clean gutters, and clean up the winter backyard clutter. Which meant digging massage spaout the Deep Blue rub and lemongrass essential oil Saturday night.

      While researching some other essential oil massage suggestions, I came across this recent post in Massage Magazine.  The article discussed a whole range of other essential oils a sports massage therapist or deep tissue massage therapist might use.   Some of the oils a massage therapist may add into their massage lotion or oils include marjoram, juniper, ginger, myrrh, and helichrysum.

      And other oils can be added to a massage. In an August, 2014 EO Spotlight, dōTERRA recommended trying vetiver and in a earlier Spotlight also recommended cypress.

      Personally, I’ve started warming up before a walk with self-inflicted :-) leg massage of juniper, ginger and cypress.  We’ll see if it increases my miles-per-lunchtime.

      A typical massage therapy dilution, considering the surface area you cover in massage, you may want to start at a relatively low dilution:

      • 3% dilution = 20 drops essential oil per ounce of carrier
      • 5% dilution = 30 drops essential oil per ounce of carrier
      • 10% dilution = 60 drops essential oil per ounce of carrier

      Take Massage Magazine’s advice to “add a touch of the spa” the next time you or your partner deal with tired, aching, overworked muscles. Share this article and your oils at your next massage session.

      And if you’re a massage therapist looking to add therapeutic grade essential oils for your clients, we can get a special deal for these key oils and help you promote these great benefits!

      Recipes

      Lavender Pecan Cheesecake with Blueberry Lavender Sauce

      Lavender can be such as surprising taste and aroma when you first encounter it in a dessert.  Both the creamy cheesecake and the rich blueberries are enhanced by the unique floral scent of lavender.  Enjoy with the lights dim, with plenty of time to linger over each bite.

      Lavender Cheesecake with Blueberry-Lavender Sauce

      Lavender Cheesecake with Blueberry-Lavender Sauce

      Lavender Cheesecake with Blueberry-Lavender Sauce
      Lavender Pecan Cheesecake with Blueberry Lavender Sauce
      Print Recipe
      Delicate cheesecake with a floral twist.
      Servings
      1 pie
      Cook Time
      1 1/2 hours
      Servings
      1 pie
      Cook Time
      1 1/2 hours
      Lavender Cheesecake with Blueberry-Lavender Sauce
      Lavender Pecan Cheesecake with Blueberry Lavender Sauce
      Print Recipe
      Delicate cheesecake with a floral twist.
      Servings
      1 pie
      Cook Time
      1 1/2 hours
      Servings
      1 pie
      Cook Time
      1 1/2 hours
      Ingredients
      Crust Ingredients
      • 1 cup crushed precans
      • 1/2 cup crushed graham crackers
      • 2 tbsp sugar
      • 1 tbsp butter, melted
      • 2 tbsp Palm Oil, Nonstick Spray, or Shortening To grease the springform pan
      Filling Ingredients
      • 4 packages cream cheese, softened
      • 1 1/2 cups sugar
      • 4 whole eggs
      • 1 cup yogurt
      • 1/2 tbsp vanilla extract
      • 4 drops Lavender Essential Oil
      Sauce Ingredients
      • 1 pound blueberries, fresh or frozen
      • 1 cup sugar
      • 1 tbsp cornstarch
      • 2 tsp lemon juice
      • 1 drop Lavender Essential Oil
      • 1 pinch salt
      Servings: pie
      Instructions
      Crust
      1. Preheat oven to 350 F. In a medium bowl, mix pecans, graham crackers, sugar and butter. Press the mixture evenly into the bottom of the prepared pan and set aside. In a large bowl, use a hand mixer to beat the cream cheese until it is nice and smooth (no lumps allowed). Slowly add the sugar as you continue to beat the cream cheese; scrape the sides of the bowl and continue to beat until combined. Add eggs, one at a time, beating on low just long enough to incorporate. Don’t overmix. Add the yogurt, vanilla, and lavender essential oil and mix just until you have a smooth consistency. Pour filling over prepared crust and stick your pan into your preheated oven. Turn the oven down to 250 degrees Fahrenheit and bake for 1 1/2 hours. The center should still wobble a little. Once done baking, turn the oven off and let sit for at least an hour. After about an hour or so, open the oven door and let it sit for a few more hours. Once cooled to room temperature, refrigerate until set.
      2. Grease the sides and bottom of a 9″ springform pan. I use unrefined palm kernel oil. The slight buttery taste and deep yellow color both improve the cheesecake. Feel free to substitute nonstick spray or shortening.
      3. In a medium bowl, mix pecans, graham crackers, sugar and butter
      4. Press the mixture evenly into the bottom of the prepared pan and set aside.
      Cheesecake
      1. In a large bowl, use a hand mixer to beat the cream cheese until nice and smooth. No lumps allowed!
      2. Slowly add the sugar as you continue to beat the cream cheese; scrape the sides of the bowl and continue to beat until combined.
      3. Add eggs, one at a time, beating on low just long enough to incorporate. Don’t over-mix.
      4. Add the yogurt, vanilla, and lavender essential oil and mix just until you have a smooth consistency.
      5. Pour filling over prepared crust and place in preheated oven.
      6. Close over and immediately turn the oven down to 250 degrees and bake for 1 1/2 hours. The center should still wobble a little.
      7. Once done baking, turn the oven off and let sit for at least an hour. After about an hour or so, open the oven door and let it sit for a few more hours. Once cooled to room temperature, refrigerate until set.
      Blueberry Lavender Sauce
      1. In a small sauce pan, bring blueberries, sugar, and cornstarch to a boil.
      2. Lower heat & simmer for 5 minutes.
      3. Remove from heat and stir in lemon juice, lavender essential oil and salt,
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      Healthy Lifestyle

      Springtime Honey Safety

      raw honey and honeycomb

      Raw honey and honeycomb

      As scratchy throats and snuffy noses increase this spring, we’ve noticed multiple recipes and remedies involving honey. And lots of questions about honey safety, raw versus filtered honey, etc. Honey is a popular addition to some facial recipes, homemade creams and lotions. A drop of lavender or lemon essential oil added to honey can be a great treat and effective throat soother. We wanted to pass along some honey facts we’ve discovered while researching combining essential oils with honey.

      No Safe Honey For Infants

      All honey is dangerous to children under the age of one because of the presence of botulism spores. Adding an essential oil or heating in a microwave does not make honey any safer.

      That’s not how raw honey and botulism work. Bees visiting flowers and plants bring botulism (Clostridium botulinum) spores back to the hive. These spores remain lodged in the honey but cannot germinate or produce toxins.When you eat the honey, you eat the spores. Filtering and pasteurization does not kill the spores — so there is not safety benefit between raw and pasteurized honey. Even boiling honey does not destroy the spores.  These spores do not cause a problem for most people, because they are destroyed in the stomach. But if you are an infant or have a compromised immune system, the spores can germinate and start producing toxins. 1 Continue Reading

      Wellness Cabinet Makeover

      Cough Syrup Base

      I had one of those dry, hacking, painful coughs you can only get courtesy of air travel.  Going from sunny, warm Austin to damp, cold England didn’t help.  Cough drops hadn’t helped.  Desperate, I ducked into a chemist’s shop and stared at rows of unfamiliar labels.  The experienced clerk made two helpful  suggestions – cups of hot Scottish breakfast tea with milk and sugar, and a wonderful local cough syrup made with honey, vinegar, and something called ‘glycerol.’

      Back in the US, I discovered ‘glycerol’ was food-grade glycerin – I had used it in cooking but never thought of it as a throat remedy.

      Here is an excellent base I’ve adapted from the original note from the chemist’s shop. Continue Reading

      Lotions

      Whipped Body Butter with Essential Oils

      Body Butter with Essential OilsWe use this basic recipe for creating our body butters for home use. A body butter combines rich, moisturizing natural plant “butters” and oils with your favorite essential oil. These easy-to-make skin luxuries provide natural, concentrated, easy-to-use skin solutions you can use daily. Essential oils can enhance any body butter recipe, leaving your skin with a wonderful, subtle scent while providing unique benefits. What do you use body butters for?

      • Hand care: Use these butters every day without the greasy feeling some lotions leave.
      • Dry patches: Massage into dry, flaky heels, elbows, or other problem areas.
      • Cuticles: Work into each finger and toe after soaking.
      • Moisturizer: Warm butter in hands, and gently massage into neck, décolletage, face, and forehead.
      • Shaving Balm: Warm and melt in hands, then massage into legs.
      • Intense Hand/Foot Therapy: Apply thickly after soaking, then protect overnight with cotton gloves or socks.

      Pure Vitamin E oil should contain 28,000 I.U. per fluid ounce. Any number less than this per ounce means the oil has been diluted. Continue Reading

      Parenting

      Not Getting Steamed Over Croup and Coughs

      Standing in a steamy bathroom at 3 AM, holding a coughing little baby. Croup and coughs can put parents on a real emotional roller-coaster.  Most of us parents have suffered through miserable nights alternating between steam, cold air, and chest rubs. We were following the suggestions of our doctors, health websites, and most importantly, the advice of our parents and grandparents.

      Turns out study after study failed to find any indication that steam helps at all. Continue Reading