Friday, June 11, 2010

Echinacea Take 2

So, I've finally gotten off my butt and started the Echinacea again. My first batch something went wrong and got this white stuff all at the bottom. I had contacted my adviser and she sent me another packet to retry making the tincture. After much procrastinating, I've gotten it started. I had to add some more liquid after the first day as it absorbed some of it, not much just maybe a tablespoon or two.

I don't know what this is supposed to look like as its soaking in the alcohol/water mixture. It already looks murky to me, and I am worried it's going to do the same thing all over again. I can only hope it does what it's supposed to, and that in about another week I'll have an Echinacea tincture.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Tincture Pictures

Here are some of the pictures from the tincture making process. My thanks to my lovely photographer who turned nose up at the earthy smell of the herbs, but stuck through it and took photos for me anyway.

Below is the tincture mixes before draining and straining, above are the draining and straining process.

I have a lot more work to do, a lot more to learn. I feel like I've overwhelmed myself with the fear of not being able to learn what I need to learn. The fear of making mistakes. I've avoid my lessons like a plague out of pure fear.

The cards said I would do well in my learning, and be successful with what I've learned when I have my own shop. I know that things aren't set in stone. But the only thing that is preventing what the cards revealed is myself and my fears. On that note, I need a good kick in the ass to knock those fears right outta me and set me back on track.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Class update...

So, I was waiting for my darling daughter to upload and send me the pictures she took of my tincture straining process...and I was waiting and waiting...wait for it *cue blonde moment* I took them on my camera not hers...hence the reason she wasn't sending them to me. DOH!

Hopefully my camera batteries will hold out to upload them. And then I can post them as long as they came out clear. My camera is kinda crappy compared to my little darling's.

I've been hesitating to continue with my lessons. I've been extremely scared that I won't do well. There's so much to learn and I sometimes feel I won't be able to retain it all. I've been letting fear rob me of my dreams and that's unacceptable.

So I will try to put that all that fear aside and give my classes my all.

Comment problem fixed on the blogs

So apparently, my other blogs had issues with comments. It took me a bit but I finally figured out the problem. For some reason I have to select pop out comment box for people to post a comment. *Sigh!* Anyway, it's fixed it should be all fine once again.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010


Well, my tinctures are done. All I have to do is strain them, which I will do either later today or tomorrow. I'm trying to figure out the best way to take photos of them.

Sadly though, my Echinacea one failed. It has a white sort of substance in it that settles to the bottom. I've been in touch with my facilitator and she is going to send me another batch of Echinacea so I can redo the tincture. That to me is AWESOME!

I truly don't know what happened. It was completely covered with the alcohol and water. I shook it everyday. It was in a dark place, well as dark a spot as I could have in my room, no direct light at all. The only thing I can assume is it may have been the temperature of my room, but I'm not sure since the other two weren't affected.

Anyway soon as I figure out basically lighting for some pictures, I'll put them up.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Tinctures almost done.

So, a couple more days and my tinctures should be done. I'm excited and nervous.
I'm not sure what all they are supposed to look like.

The Skullcap looks to have a deep mossy green color. The Echinachea has an orangy brown color, but looks a bit murky. The cramp bark looks brown, kind of reminds me of mud. I think the one I am most worried about is the Echinachea, I don't know why. Maybe it's the murky look to the liquid. I can strain them all on Friday.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Tincture process has begun

Finally, my tinctures have been started. I've been afraid to make them honestly. I kept thinking that what if I add too much alcohol or not enough. What about the water, what if I add too much of it or what kind should I use? I mean our tap water 99% of the time smells like bleach. Should I use it but boil it or should I used bottled or distilled? So I posed my water question to my facilitator and based on her response, I chose to get some bottled water. But....I was still very much afraid of messing it up.

Well, today I decided to just take the plunge and do it. It's not going to get done by itself and no one can or will do it for me. So I sat down today and began the process. I add the water and alcohol, closed the lids and shook the jars a little. I will have to shake them everyday for the next two weeks.

I am making 3 tinctures: Echinacea, Cramp bark, and Skullcap. The Skullcap reminded me a little of the smell of dried parsley. The echinacea reminded me of a very old drug store I used to go to as a kid. And the cramp bark smell well like wood and made me sneeze.

So in two weeks I'll have my tinctures. I hope :D

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

It's Official

Well, I finally had gotten my registration sent off last week. I got an email yesterday that I have been assigned a facilitator. She will be the one reviewing my quizzes, journals and reports. As well as answering any questions I may have.

Time to really kick the studying and learning in gear. No more dilly dallying.

Sunday, January 31, 2010

Still learning Lesson 1

I know I haven't posted a progress update. The truth is I'm still working on lesson one. It deals with 3 different herbs. So I choose the one I know the least about...Crampbark. I've been looking things up about it, what it is, where it comes from, what uses it has. Some of it seems contradicting at times. Maybe I haven't found a reliable source to learn about it from yet?

Next, I will move on to learning about Skullcap. Other than I've heard of it, I know basically nothing about it as well.

I'm still not "officially" a student at NAIMH either. I found myself out of printer ink! Which means I can't make copies of my application and such. I like to keep a record of such things. Hopefully I get some today, since I have stamps now LOL.

I will be posting what I've learned about Crampbark soon. Just as soon as I'm sure what I've learned is accurate.

Until then,

Monday, January 25, 2010

First Lesson

So, I read through my first lesson today. And I feel like I know nothing at all. I guess that's only natural though really.

One of the suggestions in the first lesson was to pick an herb to read about every day. In doing this one would be able to familiarize themselves with all they need to know about the herb they chose. This is quite ironic because last night as I was lying in bed thinking about how I wanted to approach learning about the herbs I would be using in my lessons and just learning about herbs in general, I actually thought about picking an herb to read about daily or every few days. I think the only way I can truly learn all I need, though I realize the learning never stops, is if I totally immerse myself in my lessons. To do just as I thought about, do just as the lesson suggests...READ READ READ all I can. Starting with the first 3 herbs I'll be using and going from there.

Tomorrow I will probably re-read my lesson, I will listen to the 2 lectures provided on CD, and read about Echinacea.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

A Journey Begins

Yes, another blog. But unlike my other two this one will be strictly dedicated to my journey to becoming an herbalist. When I can, I will post photos of my projects and their progress.

I just received my first course in the mail yesterday. I'm taking the First Course in Medicinal Herbalism through I was totally surprised by all the herbs included in the resource kit. It has 15 different herbs in it!

I went out and picked up some of the not included supplies such as Everclear. The only type I could get was 190 proof! I'm to use it to make 3 tinctures. I am nervous and scared I'm going to mess it all up. There's no room for error since there's only one set of herbs for each tincture.

I will start reading the lesson tomorrow, send off my registration form and fee, and begin working on the projects later in the week.

I will try to take some pictures tomorrow as well, if the batteries in my camera aren't dead.