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Jun 11, 2018

The Essentials of Essential Oils

by Eva Chacon

In my journey of the natural world, I’ve always turned to essential oils. Whether it’s the fact that they are marketed as being 100% natural or that they smell so great I’ve always been drawn to them, of all the natural options available they have always appealed to me. I love the idea of being able to use peppermint oil when my head hurts or rubbing some tea tree oil on a bug bite or a rogue pimple to help heal and disinfect. Essential oils seem to be the “hip” thing, so I’ve brought you some tips and tricks so you can get the most out of your essential oils.

Dilute Your Oil: To dilute your essentials oils, you’ll want to use what is referred to as a “carrier oil,” an oil that you mix with your essential oil. Many essential oils are very potent, so putting them in an oil can make them easier for your skin and help them last longer. Some carrier oils are sweet almond oil, coconut oil, and even grapeseed oil. 2% Dilution is ideal for most normal adults (2% = 2 drops per teaspoon of carrier oil or 10-12 drops per ounce) For children, 1% dilution is recommended for those over the age of 6, as well as for pregnant women, elderly adults, people with sensitive skin, and those with pre-existing conditions (1% = 1 drop per teaspoon of carrier oil or 5-6 drops per ounce). Diluting your essential oils is important to ensure you are using your oils properly and getting the most out of them. You can google essential oil dilution charts online as a guide.

Heat and Light: Essential oils are flammable, and every oil has a flash point. However, every oils flash point is different. These points tend to be quite high, so keeping your oils at normal room temperature is perfect, but storing above a hot surface or in a window sill is not recommended because the heat or sun rays may affect the oil negatively, possibly resulting in less potency.

Oxygenation and Moisture: Oxygenation occurs when your oil is exposed to oxygen. Consistently exposing your oil to the air can deteriorate your oil and cause it to evaporate, so always remember to close your oils completely. Moisture can get trapped in your oil if you leave your bottle open for too long, as well. When you get moisture in your oil it may become cloudy, or water may bead up at the bottom of your oil.

Safety: Essential oils are extremely potent. For example, one drop of peppermint essential oil is the equivalent of more than 20 cups of peppermint tea. Because of this,  you want to use great care. It is not recommended to ingest essential oils, as they are too potent for digestion and could disrupt your gut bacteria. Do not apply essential oils to your skin without a carrier (especially for children), or before exposing your skin to sunlight or a tanning bed (especially citrus-based oils, as they can increase the risk of photosensitivity). Carefully research all oils if you are pregnant or breastfeeding and if you wish to use on children.

Last few things to remember - not all oils come with droppers, depending on the thickness of your oil. It’s important to get a glass dropper for this. Never use the dropper as a cap, the rubber on the droppers are very pliable and can corrode. Clean with alcohol and keep in a dry place. Keep your out of reach from children and keep oils in a dark bottle out of the sunlight. If you are pregnant, always check with your medical provider before using essential oils.

Follow these simple tips and tricks for your essential oils and you’ll be surprised how long they last. Always treat your oils with care - after all, they aren’t cheap and you want to get the most out of them. Essential oils can be used for many different things, so experiment with your oils to find what blends you like best and how best to use them in your daily life.



Jun 11, 2018

Recognizing Your Limits

by Nichole Carver, Your Magical Marketing Millennial

You ever take on those projects you think are small, but later realize they really aren't small - they're kinda of massive? Like...MASSIVE? That happened to me this spring. We bought a house back at the end of November that needed some yard work. I thought originally that the yard could wait a year. See, I generally keep my parents garden for them each year, and that would be especially important this year because my dad was recently diagnosed with Lymphoma. The work I do for them benefits my entire family, and this year that would count more than ever.

So how did I end up taking on the massive project of my own yard as well? That wasn't the plan! Yet fast forward a couple of months and I've taken a 300 lb sod cutter to my grass, built five 4'x4' garden boxes in my yard, and a trellis to espalier an apple and a pear tree. I've moved yards and yards of sod and numerous wheelbarrows of dirt, with some other materials for hugelkulture. This was all on top of planting my parents garden, going to school full time, working full time, and taking care of my kids, quail, and puppy. Was I insane? YES! Should I have recognized my boundaries and that whole not having a time-turner thing? YES!

Needless to say, I reached a point of exhaustion and depletion. I have a strong, strong tendency to be overly-ambitious (can you tell?). Add that to a completionist, perfectionist mentality and it's a cocktail of never-ending over-commitment. Because, you see, this is just ONE example of the ridiculous standards I try to hold myself to. I'm sure some of you can relate.

I was hitting a breaking point is when my local angels showed up - friends, neighbors, and family. Did I ask for help? No. I was just planning on powering through it all at some point. That's my personality tendency. Thank goodness for those who recognized I desperately needed some assistance and took the initiative to provide it. Should I have asked for help? Abso-freaking-lutely. I let my own ego get in the way of humility. In retrospect - I could have gotten a lot more done had I just been patient enough to take things one step at a time, ask for help along the way, and stuck to my original plan.

In short, the lesson learned from this is: it's more than OKAY to have limitations. It's OKAY to ask for help. It's OKAY to not tackle projects all at once. It's OKAY to include others in your projects. And it's better to live in the moment than to inundate yourself with excessive responsibility. It might be that a little bit of patience goes a really long way. Thanks to all those angels out there for saving my sanity. 

Jun 11, 2018

Keeping Kids Active and Engaged During the Summer Months

by Brittini Gehring, MH

Jun 11, 2018

Edible Flowers

by Shaelynn Brackett

Jun 11, 2018

June Organtics

by RidgeCrest Herbals

May 24, 2018

Gemstones to Heal the Soul

by Connie Carlin

May 24, 2018

Draw Happy Little Bees to Your Happy Little Garden

by RidgeCrest Herbals

May 23, 2018

Natural Weed Killer

by RidgeCrest Herbals

Tired of weeding? Here is a safe alternative to commercial weed killers!

What you will Need:

1 gallon of Vinegar

2 cups Epsom Salt

1/4 cup dish soap

Spray bottle (for smaller areas)

or Sprayer (for larger areas)


Use a medium-sized pan to heat up a quart of vinegar and stir in salt until dissolved. Once cooled, ad all ingredients slowly (to avoid suds) to sprayer/bottle. Apply to weeds in the hottest part of the day when there is no rain in the forecast for 24-48 hours. Some more stubborn weeds may need a second application. Vinegar draws moisture out of the plants, and the sun will help magnify the process. Meanwhile, Salt can penetrate the soil and affect an area permanently, so avoid places you want to plant in later on. 

May 23, 2018

May Window to Wanderlust

by Abbie Warnock-Matthews

Alexandar Falls, Whistler, Canada

May 23, 2018

Container Gardening for Beginners

by Will Christensen

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