“Today we still have children who are plant sensitives, who seem to carry a gene of “green blood” in them. You recognize them lost at play for hours in a garden, enchanted by the pollen covered insects and butterflies lazing on the launching pads of freshly opened blossoms.” -Rosemary Gladstar, from the book Family Herbal
I was this child.
I grew up on a diet and lifestyle that, over time I discovered, didn’t necessarily agree with my mind and body. For years I felt foggy and tired and finally realized that I had to change something. Intuitively I felt that this “something” was my diet, specifically the food I put in my body. I dove headfirst into holistic medicine and healing and began focusing inward to see how each food affected my mind and body. I quickly learned through experience that you are what you eat and began to make better choices.
Hydrating and vitality have become core to my daily practices. I start each day with a warm glass of water loaded with chia seeds and grey celtic sea salt, which function to replenish and hydrate my body and in turn, make my kidneys very happy.
Next, I give myself an abhyangya (self massage) thereby stimulating my lymph system and releasing endorphins that bring a sense of peace to my mind and body. My favorite oils to use are my Poppy and Someday salves, each of which contains a unique blend of wild crafted and garden grown herbs. For example, the Silver Raven Salve contains an herbal and essential oil blend designed to expand the lung capacity facilitating the breath and calming the mind and
Additionally, movement and exercise are a very important part of my life. Yoga and running are constants that help to revitalize and energize.
Last but not least, and probably most important to me, my rituals inherently give me time to connect with the plant world, which is what ultimately inspires me. I love visiting the garden to pick just-blossomed Calendula flowers (which are found in abundance in my products). And if I’m not in my garden, there’s a good chance you’ll find me out on a hike wild-crafting herbs, such as Yerba Santa (used my herbal smoking blend).
For me, holistic living is a lifelong journey, one of curiosity, discovery and inspiration.
Photographed by Jamie Arrigo at Kari's Laurel Canyon Studio, January 2014