A few years ago, my friend gave me the oddest gift. As she handed it to me, she sheepishly said, “I’m not sure how you will like this, but I use them at my house, and I hope you’ll have a use for them too!” Inside the neatly wrapped brown paper package was a roll of cloth squares. I admitted that I was confused by the gift and jokingly asked if it was toilet paper. Turns out I wasn’t too far off – it was a roll of Unpaper® Towels! It turned out her “odd” gift inspired me and seeded my passion to look at my home in a new way, to ask myself, “How sustainable are my household habits?”Read More
Clean hands are the guardians of health. And while washing your hands with warm soapy water is always best, sometimes life doesn’t allow for that luxury. Have you ever found yourself in a situation where right after you touch something, you have this inexplainable urge to wash your hands? Sometimes you can just feel when something is icky. Having found myself with this reaction more in the past few months, it solidified my practice of carrying homemade hand sanitizer everywhere I go.Read More
Sitting beside a fire is one of my favorite pastimes. The full sensory experience offers so many aspects of comfort: the sensation of being warm and cozy, the abstract performance of the flames dancing, the crackling sound of the wood changing form, the taste of herbal tea or a craft libation I’m likely sipping on, and of course the aroma! Each of these elements brings me closer to a place of peace and contentment.Read More
2020 has been a year of rediscovery. As we have all been limiting trips to public places, many of us have found more interest in cooking and in creating DIY products to use around the home. It was fascinating to take a look at our top recipes of the year and reflect on just what our herbal community has found to be the most helpful in 2020. The silver lining to this year is that, although it has been difficult, we are more resilient than we were yesterday, and we will continue to learn and grow every day forward. We hope you enjoy this recipe roundup as living proof of our collective vision for a healthy and sustainable tomorrow. Cheers to a hopeful new year!Read More
When life gets a bit madhouse, it can significantly impact our ability to process information efficiently. With so much “noise” all around us, it becomes hard to create a space where we can focus and nurture mental and emotional clarity. The folks who are home-schooling or working from home these days know this all too well! Many of us are turning to our favorite herbal allies as we negotiate these challenging days, and here at Mountain Rose Herbs, we’re seeing more questions from people who are exploring aromatherapy as part of the actions they are taking to create a calm in the storm. With that in mind, we put together this list of ten essential oils that have long-established reputations for supporting clarity and focus.Read More
Olfactory memories are powerful things. The other day I was at the feed store picking up cat food, and as I walked out, I caught a waft of chewing tobacco. Even before I could identify what I was smelling, my feet stopped walking and my Grandpa Albert—who is many years gone—popped into my head. There in my mind’s eye, he was in his overalls, with a plug of tobacco in his pocket, snuggling small-me in his lap, playing the penny counting game we used to play. This relationship between scent, emotion, and memory is hardwired in our brains—our olfactory bulb routes the smell information it receives to the limbic system, including the areas of our brain directly related to emotion and memory. This is why just a whiff of scent took me back decades and flooded me with the same warmth and comfort I experienced playing games with my beloved grandpa. These powerful connections are a fundamental factor in why aromatherapy can be supportive in managing mood and stress because what we smell literally impacts our brains… all of which brings me in a roundabout fashion to potpourri.
Candlelight is an element of winter holidays all over the world. Whether part of someone’s deeply held spiritual or cultural practices—as during Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, and Diwali—or representative of age-old Winter Solstice and Christmas traditions, candles are, for many of us, a fundamental part of our winter festivities… which means it’s a perfect time to make easy homemade scented candles in preparation for the celebrations, decorating, and gift giving.Read More
One of the questions that often pops up here on the Mountain Rose Herbs blog is how to make substitutions between dried and fresh herbs. What if your garden bounty is begging to be enjoyed but your recipe calls for dried herbs? Or if you find yourself in the middle of an icy winter with no fresh herbs in sight?Read More
We’ve all seen the romanticized apothecary photos of beautiful glass bottles filled with vibrant herbs and spices. Often as I hone in on the unique tones of color in each jar, I’m reminded of each plant’s complexities, their character, and their purpose. It’s a true gift to have that same feeling when you open your cupboard or medicine cabinet. But with my busy lifestyle, my collection can sometimes become less than tidy or orderly. What I’ve learned is that keeping this area of my life organized provides me with a sense of peace and allows me to enjoy my herbal practice with more fluidity. It’s also a good way to keep an eye on my herbal inventory. Here are some tips to help you organize your botanical goods and ensure that you are making the most of your herbal allies.Read More
There is no one-size-fits-all solution to solving pest problems in our yards and gardens. Every system is unique and constantly changing. Thus, it’s important to equip your garden with a wide range of tools that will help it flourish. Fortunately, backyard biodiversity offers a broad and adaptable range of ecological services through methods like protecting predatory insects and supporting their reproduction, or working against the reproductive cycles of the pests you want to reduce. Let’s talk about why it’s necessary to equip your home garden with the multitude of tools it needs to strengthen resilience and reduce weed and pest pressure naturally.