Smell the Flowers for Earth Day

May 19, 2016
There is nothing quite like the honesty and directness of children!

Cathyand Kids
I spent a few hours during Earth Day showing kids of various ages photos of flowers being pollinated by bees and butterflies, and then they could smell the essential oil that came from that flower. Everyone enjoyed the experience, and had their favorites. (Click on the images below to see in larger gallery.)

What was most interesting was how very few of the children had heard of jasmine, had never smelled it before, and yet their responses were almost identical. One small boy who was maybe 5 years old smelled the vial of jasmine, closed his eyes, cocked his head, and literally got blissed out….when I asked if he liked it he gave me a big smile.

The New List of Worst and Best Conventional Foods

April 14, 2016

The 2016 list of the top ten worst foods (pesticide residues) and the top 15 OK to eat of conventionally grown produce is here:

https://www.organicconsumers.org/news/new-fruit-tops-dirty-dozen-list-most-contaminated-produce

Not everyone can afford or even find organic produce. With local Farmer’s Markets a month or so in the future, this link will provide you with the information to shop more healthily.

Amazing and Hopeful Article on “Aquaculture”

March 31, 2016

Every once in awhile I read about something extraordinary. This fisherperson is a pioneer with a vision not just amazing, but “grounded” in science, practical, and benefits many. Please share.

https://medium.com/invironment/an-army-of-ocean-farmers-on-the-frontlines-of-the-blue-green-economic-revolution-d5ae171285a3#.tac6jibxu

Cornucopia: One of My Favorite Info Sites

February 23, 2016

 

Feb 21 at 6:31 AM

Wood Stove Baking

February 18, 2016

A few weeks ago I was staring at my nightly fire as it was turning into coals, and wondered if I could “bake” in the wood stove, using it like an oven. I chose not to load another log that evening and instead pushed all of the coals to the sides leaving an empty space in the middle. I wrapped a homegrown squash in three layers of recycled foil. Then I put it in the center of the wood stove, closed the damper and went to bed. In the morning was a still warm, soft winter squash tasting slightly of wood and very sweet.

Click on images below for larger slide show view

A Doctor’s Insight Into Immunity

January 18, 2016

After getting sick for the first time in years (a sinus infection that I helped “manage” with large amounts of herbs, vitamin C and rest), I am reminded of how complex our immune system is, and how much more we are learning about it. This link to Kelly Brogan, MD is a good intro to this doctor and her world view, with an emphasis on the intricacies  of immunity. The comments were also interesting.

http://kellybroganmd.com/immunity-emerging-truth/?utm_source=Kelly+Brogan+MD+Newsletter&utm_campaign=172406576b-Immunity+The+Emerging+Truth&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_d0f977a8c5-172406576b-121829793

For the 3 weeks I was fighting the infection I refrained from eating any added sugars (I was about 98% compliant). Just before I got sick I ate more sugar than I usually do (which is very little since it seems that genetically I am prone to blood sugar imbalances) because it was the holidays. Just a reminder to self that sugar reduces the body’s immune response. An excellent explanation of this is found in this link:

http://alternativehealthatlanta.com/immune-system/sugar-and-your-immune-system/

Even though I cannot remember where I read this research, it seems that the body does not do as well with single large amounts of oral Vitamin C as smaller amounts spread out evenly throughout the day. To get your blood titer up and constant seems to be the best strategy, and to do that, you want to take about 200 mg. of Vitamin C per hour. When I was sick I used a powdered vitamin C (with bioflavonoids, which help potentiate the C) and lemon juice.

May the rest of this winter be a healthy one for you and your loved ones.

Making a Cup of Tea

January 10, 2016

I have been procrastinating about making my jun (a kombucha variant using green tea instead of black, and honey instead of sugar), mainly because it involves heating up 2 quarts of water, steeping the tea for 10 minutes and the herbs with it for 20 minutes, then letting it cool so the raw honey won’t be cooked…lots of steps and I’m tired.

Well, I was perusing Yahoo news, and an article popped up about making tea. After reading it I realized that how I made tea was based upon what I heard decades ago, and here was info based upon some studies of what actually happens using various temperatures and times to steep the leaves. There is also some good info on the differences among the various types of tea (black, green and white) and that ideally we’d make a cup of each one of those teas using the best temperature and amount of time. Who knew?!

So here you go: https://www.yahoo.com/health/you-39-re-making-tea-all-1332462315626550.html

For those of you concerned about fluoride in tea (as well as the beneficial health aspects), here is a site with impeccable credentials and fascinating information: http://lpi.oregonstate.edu/mic/food-beverages/tea

And meanwhile I’m going to try making a batch of jun doing cold steeping, thus bypassing a few steps and making the whole job easier.

Happy Solstice (and all the holy days you celebrate)

December 22, 2015

For an incredible read about the feminine roots of the winter holidays, please go to: http://gathervictoria.com/2014/12/04/doe-a-deer-a-female-deer-the-spirit-of-mother-christmas/   Whatever you choose to celebrate, may this “dark time” be full of interior light. Iris Herbal wishes you all peace, health and happiness in the New Year.

New Organic Egg Scorecard

December 20, 2015

Once the Farmers’ Market closes down for the season, and the local chickens take their (well-earned) winter  rest, one has to buy eggs at the grocery store. How do you tell which organic eggs to buy when most of them advertise free-range, and humanely raised? How can we get beyond the hype? Cornucopia’s Scorecard to the rescue! http://www.cornucopia.org/organic-egg-scorecard/

 

Passive Solar Greenhouse Pecha Kucha Video

November 12, 2015

This summer I was invited to present my Passive Solar Greenhouse project at a local, outdoor  Pecha Kucha event. The theme of the event was “Luz es Vida – Light is Life,” so you will see this concept woven in to the following video.

Pecha Kucha is Japanese for “chit chat” and was developed as a succinct presentation format: 20 slides with 20 seconds of presentation time per slide with total time just 6 minutes 40 seconds. Enjoy!

Cathy Hope Pecha Kucha Night Taos Volume 17 from pechakuchataos on Vimeo.


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