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Monthly Archives: July 2013


by Stephanie Pflumm ©Copyright 2008

Quartz Crystals have an ancient history as a tool for meditation, divination &
enhancing powers. It has been used as a source of power across all continents
& cultures.

In South America, Quartz was considered a sacred stone inhabited by spirits.
Several Crystal skulls have been found among the ruins of Mayan temples. One
perfect carving was found in 1924 in the ruins in British Honduras. Even under
the keen eye of the microscope, not a single tool mark was found on the entire

North American tribes also considered the Crystal holy & pragmatic. When
farming on a hillside that did not receive much sunlight, they put Crystals to
an ingenious use.

They would grind large Crystals into smaller pieces, place them in a hollow
cow's horn & bury them in the ground for a year. The results was a very fine
crystalline powder which was spread among the plantings along the hill. What
little sun did reach the crystallized hill, was magnified & the crops

The Australian Aborigine tribes honored the Crystal as a magical stone.
Rainbow Crystals (Crystals with internal fractures) were considered the home
of the Rainbow Spirit who had incredible powers.

There are many ways you can use Crystals & gemstones in your meditations. The
best way will always be the one that feels most correct to you. I'll discuss a
few different Crystal meditation practices, including my own meditation; you
will notice several similarities in each one. There are many resources with a
variety of practices, experiment until you find the one that works.

The primary purpose of meditation is to clear your mind, to calm the insane
distractions of our world. Once you can clear this static, you can become open
to a host wonders & energies. Besides, simple meditations can refresh & revive
the body & spirit.

Secluding yourself from the outside world & sitting quietly is not enough to
bring you to a meditative state. Every breath you take can bring in a
distraction, if you are not in control of where it is going.

This is the first thing each of the meditations have in common. A disciplined
way of controlling your breath.

The second is visualizing. This allows you to create a mental block against
unwanted thought patterns during your meditation. Think of it as creating a
force shield for your spirit.


Sit in a comfortable chair (not overstuffed, but well fitting), with your feet
on the floor & your hands on your knees. Keep the Crystal you are working with
in the palm of your predominant hand.

As you breath in, imagine the loving life force of Mother Earth entering you
through the soles of your feet. Briefly hold the sweet air & allow the loving
energies to fill you. Imagine exhaling through your Crown Chakra & releasing
the love into the universe.

Continue breathing, holding & exhaling with that visualization, until you feel
a comforting flow moving through you.

Take the Crystal & bring your hands together & up so that they are level with
your heart, (continue your breathing pattern) holding the Crystal with the
point away from your body. Imagine that flow of loving energies now moving
through your Heart Chakra, into your arms & hands & out through the point of
the Crystal.

Accept & be a part of the light & love flowing through & around you.
When you are ready to complete your meditation, reverse the flow by breathing
in through your Crown Chakra & out through your feet.


Hold a clear Crystal in your non dominant hand & send loving thought patterns
into the Crystal, honoring the energies within.

Control your breath by breathing in slowly for the count of six, hold for six
counts & breath out for six counts (if six is too long, try four) until the
pattern starts to feel comfortable.

Visualize light coming in with each breath, filling your body & spirit &
leaving through the crystal to create light around you.

As the light circles & grows around you, ask the energies within the Crystal
to communicate that which you need to know. Be open to what you receive.


For my meditation, I use 12 Gems & Crystals to draw a circle. Depending on
what work I wish to do in meditation, I may bring a stone or crystal into the
circle with me.

Using a Chakra breathing exercise, I begin taking control of my breath. I
imagine my breath slowly entering & exiting through each of the seven Chakras,
beginning at the base.

As I go through each Chakra/Breath I visualize the color represented by that
Chakra. Red for base; Orange - stomach; Yellow - diaphragm; Green - heart;
Blue - throat; Indigo - third eye; Violet - crown, flowing in, through & back
out into the universe. Slowly building an imaginary rainbow around me.

When I reach the Crown Chakra, I open myself to the universe & its gifts.

To ground myself after meditation & working, I reverse the Chakra/Breath/Color
exercise until I imagine myself resting comfortably but firmly on Mother

There is never a wrong way to achieve a clear mind & a balanced body. Feel
free to experiment with different breathing exercises, stones or
visualizations. The right way is the one that works for you.

Abundant blessings,

Using Essential Oils with Babies and Children

A good reminder of the power of essential oils and how they work.
To introduce aromatherapy to babies place 2 drops of essential oil C(try Lavender) on a tissue and keep it nearby when you are feeding him or her. He will come to associate the aroma with love and comfort. Use this scent at night to help him sleep. When you leave the child with a sitter the aroma will comfort and reassure him.

Use 1 drop Chamomile oil on a washcloth wrapped ice cube to relieve teething pain in children

Children love it when their bath water smells good. Lavender and Roman Chamomile are good choices for small children. It is best to add the essential oils to some milk or liquid soap before adding to the tub. Use 1-3 total drops per bath. Be sure to keep all bottles of essential oils away from children.

When planning a children’s party choose the Citrus oils like Orange and Mandarin to use in the diffuser or Aroma Lamp. They are happy yet calming scents that all children love.

Citrus oils can be used as natural cleaning agents around the house. Simply add a few drops of Orange, Lemon, Bergamot or Mandarin oil to water, moisten a clean cloth with the mixture and wipe down children’s rooms and school bags.

Scent children’s drawers containing nighttime clothing with Lavender and Chamomile essential oils applied to cotton balls. Works for Moms too! Sweet Dreams!

Essential oil use:Children respond very well to LOW Dosages of essential oils especially for anger and irritability. Use 1/3 the adult dose.When using essential oils with children, please remember their skin is very delicate. When adding e/o’s to a bath be sure to blend the correct # of drops with about 16 oz of water, shake well, then add this mixture to the bath water. Use only those oils safe for children. A few are Lavender, Geranium and Rose. Use 1/2 the usual amount.Children’s Dosages Use half the usual dosage when diffusing essential oils in a child’s room.

Crying/Irritable Baby Put 1 drop Lavender on your shoulder and rock the baby to sleep while the baby’s head rest on your shoulder. For more detailed information on using essential oils with baies and Children we offer the book Aromatherapy for Mother and Baby By Allison England, R.N.

Roman Chamomile is soothing for tantrums and will also promote a good nights sleep. Put 1 drop on the pillow at bedtime. Used in the bath they can be blended with liquid soap to help them disperse. Use a lower dosage, 50% or 1/2 the recommended amount if pregnant or breastfeeding, with children or the elderly. The number of drops of essential oils used should vary in direct proportion to body weight, taking into account the age of the person as well as mental and physical health. The very old should use the same number of drops as children and babies half the amount of children.

Sweet Orange – The Oil of Happiness Warm and sunny, excellent for depression,stress, tension, frustration and anxiety.Orange helps to lift the spirits and promote joy. A great scent for children.Why not use in a diffuser or aroma lamp today.

Another way to use essential oils is a hand or foot massage. Children love a hand massage and who doesn’t like their feet rubbed. Lavender would be a good choice. Remember everyone likes to be pampered.Use 3-5 drops of essential oils per Tablespoon of base oil. Use 1/2 the adult dose for children.Choose Sweet Almond, Apricot Kernel or any other unscented carrier oil.

If you have children……..you probably have ‘stinky sneakers’!!! Here’s a great blend for sneaker sachets:
two teaspoons essential oil of Sandalwood one teaspoon essential oil of Tea tree one half teaspoon each essential oils of Lemon and Grapefruit one fourth teaspoon each essential oils of Spruce and Lavender(if you have girls, put a bit more lavender oil in) 4 cups natural clay kitty litter
Stir the oils into the kitty litter in a glass jar, cover and let the mixture age for a week. Put those mismatched or threadbare socks to good use….fill four of them with the sachet blend and close them with rubber bands.

Tangerine oil has a scent similar to Mandarin but contains NO anthranilic acid ester and therefore has no sedative effects. anthranilic acid esters are highly sedative. Mandarin is wonderful to use with children suffering from anxiety, nervousness or stress. Make this oil your first choice with children. Great for adults as well.

Eucalyptus Smithi is the only Eucalyptus essential oil that should be used on children. Eucalyptus Globulus which is the most common is usually rectified and is not suitable for children. A top note in aromatherapy, this oil is said to be helpful for chest infections, to facilitate breathing. It is also an effective analgesic. Aslo suitable for the elderly.

At the first sign of a stuffy nose place 1 drop of Eucalyptus on the corner of your pillow. This can sometimes even stop a cold from coming on. For young children use Eucalyptus Smithi a much safer oil.

For colds and coughs.Using essential oils with babies and children. Under the bed place a bowl of boiling water to which you have added 3 drops of Eucalyptus Oil. Use Eucalyptus Smithi which is safer for children. The steam will rise releasing the molecules into the room. According to the book do not use Eucalyptus on babies younger than 2 months. From The Complete Book of Essential Oil and Aromatherapy by Valerie Ann Worwood.

When using essential oils in the bath for children be sure to dilute in a carrier oil like Sweet Almond Oil or whole milk.Use 1/2 the usual adult dosage. (6-8 drops is an adult dose) Lavender and Chamomile are ideal.

If you have children living away from home be sure they have a bottle of Tea Tree oil. My son was recently in New York on business and aquired numerous spider bites. His calf was swollen, hot, and very painful. He picked up a bottle of Tea Tree at a nearby store and he happily reported the next day that it really worked! Dried it up, swelling down, no pain or itching.

A Soothing Tip for Babies and Children Place 4 drops Lavender and 4 drops Chamomile on a tissue and place between the sheets 1/2 hour before bedtime. Remove tissue before child gets in bed. Use this tip yourself and tuck inside your pillowcase. Sweet Dreams!

Essential Oil of Lemon
Keep Lemon on hand to kill germs.Keep a spray bottle handy for quick cleanups in children’s playroom. Add to dishwashing liquid or any mild hand soap.Use in a spray for disinfecting the air. You’ll find plenty of other uses I’m sure.It has high antibacterial properties. It’s antiseptic properties will last for 20 days.


Ranch Style Party Mix


1 1-ounce envelope Ranch salad dressing

2 tablespoons dried dill weed

6 cups cereal, corn and rice

1 10-ounce package oyster crackers, or Ritz Bits crackers

1 6-ounce package pretzel sticks

3/4 cup vegetable oil

Combine dressing mix and dillweed; add cereal, crackers, and pretzels. Combine well. Drizzle mixture with oil; stir to coat thoroughly. Place mixture in a large paper bag; let stand for about 2 hours, shaking occasionally. Store in an airtight container.
Yield: about 16 cups
Category: Snacks


Botanical: Cinnamonum camphora (T. NEES and EBERM.)
Family: N.O. Lauraceae
—Synonyms—Laurel Camphor. Gum Camphor.
—Part Used—Gum.
—Habitat—China, Japan, and adjacent parts of East Asia. Formosa official in the U.S.P. Dryobalanops aromatica is indigenous to Borneo and Sumatra.

—Description—Camphor is a white crystalline substance, obtained from the tree Cinnamonum camphora, but the name has been given to various concrete odorous volatile products, found in different aromatic plants. The commercial Camphor comes only from C. camphora and Dryobalanops camphora (fam. Dipterocarpacaea). The first gives our official Camphor, the latter the Borneo Camphor, which is much valued in the East, but unknown in Europe and America. C. camphora is an evergreen tree looking not unlike our linden; it grows to a great size, is manybranched, flowers white, small and clustered, fruit a red berry much like cinnamon. While the tree grows in China, etc., it can be cultivated successfully in sub-tropical countries, such as India and Ceylon, and it will thrive in Egypt, Formosa, Madagascar, Canary Islands and southern parts of Europe, California, Florida, and also in Argentina. It grows so slowly that the return financially is a long investment. Some growers think that Camphor cannot be taken from the trees till they are fifty years old. In Japan and Formosa the drug comes from the root, trunk and branches of the tree by sublimation, but there is less injury done to the tree in the American plantations, as it is taken there from the leaves and twigs of the oldest trees. A Camphor oil exudes in the process of extracting Camphor, which is valued by the Chinese, used for medicinal purposes. Two substances are found in commerce under the name of oil of Camphor: one is the produce of C. cinnamonum, and is known as Formosa or Japanese oil of Camphor; the other as East Indian oil of Camphor, from the D. aromatica but this oil is not found in European or American trade. It is less volatile than the other, and has a distinctive odour; it is highly prized by the Chinese, who use it for embalming purposes and to scent soap. The Chinese attribute many virtues to it. It is mentioned by Marco Polo in the thirteenth century and Camoens in 1571, who called it the ‘balsam of disease.’ During the last few years large quantities have come into the American and European markets as Japanese oil; it varies in quality and colour from a thin watery oil to a thick black one. It is imported in tin cans and varies greatly in the amount of Camphor it contains, some cans having had all the solid principle extracted before importation. The odour is peculiar, like sassafras and distinctly camphoraceous; this oil is said to be used in Japan for burning, making varnish and for Chinese inks, as a diluent for artists’ colours; it has a capacity for dissolving resins that oil of Turps has not. The properties in the oil are much the same as in Camphor, but it is more stimulant and very useful in complaints of stomach and bowels, in spasmodic cholera and flatulent colic. It is also used as a rubefacient and sedative liniment, and if diluted with Olive oil or soap is excellent for local rheumatism, sprains, bruises, and neuralgia dose, 2 or 3 minims. There is an erroneous idea that Camphor acts as a preventive to infectious diseases. It is very acrid and in large doses very poisonous, and should be used cautiously in certain heart cases. It is a well-known preventive of moths and other insects, such as worms in wood; natural history cabinets are often made of it, the wood of the tree being occasionally imported to make cabinets for entomologists. The Dryobalanops oil of Camphor is said to be found in trees too young to produce Camphor, and is said to be the first stage of the development of Camphor, as it is found in the cavities of the trunk, which later on become filled with Camphor. Its chief constituent is an oil called Borneene. The D. aromatica tree, found in Sumatra and Borneo, grows to an enormous height, often over 100 feet, and trunk 6 or 7 feet in diameter. The Camphor of the older trees exists in concrete masses, in longitudinal cavities, in the heart of the tree, 1 1/2 feet long at certain distances apart. The only way of finding out if Camphor has formed in the tree is by incision. This Camphor is chiefly used for funeral rites, and any that is exported is bought by the Chinese at a high price, as they use it for embalming, it being less volatile than ordinary Camphor. Another Camphor called N’gai, obtained from the Blumea Balcamferi (Compositae), differs chemically from the Borneo species, being levogyrate, and is converted by boiling nitric acid, to a substance considered identical with stearoptene of Chrysanthemum parthenium. This plant grows freely in the author’s garden, and is known in Great Britain as Double-flowered Bush Fever-Few.
—Medicinal Action and Uses—Camphor has a strong, penetrating, fragrant odour, a bitter, pungent taste, and is slightly cold to the touch like menthol leaves; locally it is an irritant, numbs the peripheral sensory nerves, and is slightly antiseptic; it is not readily absorbed by the mucous membrane, but is easily absorbed by the subcutaneous tissue- it combines in the body with glucuronic acid, and in this condition is voided by the urine. Experiments on frogs show a depressant action to the spinal column, no motor disturbance, but a slow increasing paralysis; in mankind it causes convulsions, from the effect it has on the motor tract of the brain; it stimulates the intellectual centres and prevents narcotic drugs taking effect, but in cases of nervous excitement it has a soothing and quieting result. Authorities vary as to its effect on blood pressure; some think it raises it, others take an opposite view; but it has been proved valuable as an excitant in cases of heart failure, whether due to diseases or as a result of infectious fevers, such as typhoid and pneumonia, not only in the latter case as a stimulant to circulation, but as preventing the growth of pneumococci. Camphor is used in medicine internally for its calming influence in hysteria, nervousness and neuralgia, and for serious diarrhoea, and externally as a counter-irritant in rheumatisms, sprains bronchitis, and in inflammatory conditions, and sometimes in conjunction with menthol and phenol for heart failure; it is often given hypodermically, 3 to 5 grains dissolved in 20 to 30 minims of sterile Olive oil – the effect will last about two hours. In nervous diseases it may be given in substance or in capsules or in spirit; dose 2 to 5 grains. Its great value is in colds, chills, and in all inflammatory complaints; it relieves irritation of the sexual organs.

—Preparations and Dosages—Spirit of Camphor, B.P., 5 to 20 drops. Tincture of Camphor Comp., B.P. (Paregoric), 1/2 to 1 drachm. Camphor water, B.P., 1 to 2 OZ. Liniment of Aconite, B.P. Liniment of Belladonna, B.P. Liniment of Camphor Comp., B.P. Liniment of Opium, B.P. Liniment of Soap, B.P. Liniment of Mustard, B.P. Liniment of Turpentine, B.P. Liniment of Turpentine and Acetic Acid, B.P. Spirit of Camphor, B.P., 5 to 20 drops. Tincture of Camphor Comp., B.P.

The Lady of the Lake

(Nimue, Vivien, Vivienne, Niniane)

The Lady of the Lake was known by many names. She was most often Nimue (pronounced Nim-oo-ay). Nimue was often confused and misrepresented in Arthurian Legend as an enchantress wanting nothing more than to steal Merlin’s magick. This is considered by most, a literary fabrication created by the misogynist, religious state of that time.

Literarily, Nimue was the daughter of Diones and the lover of both Pelles and Merlin. In reference to Nimue as the Lady of the Lake, it was she who gave the sword Excalibur to Arthur and regained it when he died. She also accompanied three additional faerie queens to Avalon with the body of the slain king. It is also said that she stole the child Lancelot and cured his madness. This was done so Lancelot could become guard to Nimue’s weak son Mabuz who was tormented by Iweret.

Alfred, Lord Tennyson paints one of the lovliest literary pictures of the Lady of the Lake in his great work, Idylls of the King. This first reference describes the Lady of the Lake presenting Excalibur to the King. The second reference is the return of the sword after the death of Arthur.

“And near him stood the Lady of the Lake
Who knows a subtler magic than his own-
Clothed in white samite, mystic, wonderful.
She gave the King his huge cross-hilted sword,
Whereby to drive the heathen out. A mist
Of incense curl’d about her, and her face
Well nigh was hidden in the minster gloom;
But there was heard among the hold hymns
A voice as of the waters, for she dwell
Down in the deep-calm, whatsoever storms
May shake the world- and when the surface rolls,
Hath power to walk the waters like our Lord.”

Spoken by Sir Bedivere who was charged with casting Excalibur to the Lady…

“Then with both hands I flung him [Excalibur], wheeling him;
But when I look’d again, behold an arm;
Clothed in white samite, mystical, wonderful,
That caught him by the hilt, and brandish’d him
Three times, and drew him under the mere.”

Mythologically, the Celtic Lady of the Lake was known as a Gwragedd Nnnwn (or Lake Faerie). These fae were often married to mortal men. They were lovely, blonde women who enjoyed female company and aiding mortal women and children. The Lady of the Lake was also considered the Queen of the Isle of Maidens.

Nimue, mythologically, was a lessor Celtic Moon Goddess; cognate with the Greek Nemesis and Diana of the Grove. Her name meant “fate” and “she who lives” and was said to reside in the Fairy wood of Broceliande. She was also connected to the Goddess Morgan.

Archetypically, Nimue and the Lady of the Lake represented the primal initiation into the Otherworld. She reigned over knowledge, was the foster mother, and the mistress of wisdom.

Traditional Buddhist Prayer.

The beauty of this prayer spoke to us with great directness and simplicity. May we all take its message into our hearts, so we can become clearer channels for love.
Oneness of Life and Light,
Entrusting in your Great Compassion,
May you shed the foolishness in myself,
Transforming me into a conduit of Love.
May I be a medicine for the sick and weary,
Nursing their afflictions until they are cured;
May I become food and drink,
During time of famine,
May I protect the helpless and the poor,
May I be a lamp,
For those who need your Light,
May I be a bed for those who need rest,
and guide all seekers to the Other Shore.
May all find happiness through my actions,
and let no one suffer because of me.
Whether they love or hate me,
Whether they hurt or wrong me,
May they all realize true entrusting,
Through Other Power,
and realize Supreme Nirvana.
Namo Amida Buddha

Hawaiian Bath


1 can pineapple rings
1 can of coconut milk
2 cups of powdered milk

Combine one can of coconut milk (minus 2 tablespoons) with 2
cups of powdered milk.
Pour the milk mixture into a warm bath and float the pineapple
rings on top of the water. Soak and enjoy!

Baby’s First Samhain keepsake

you’ll need :

1 6″ square of construction paper (Black or orange)
Washable Tempura paint (White)
Black permanent marker

First wash the child’s foot, (you how dirty those things can
get) either brush the paint on the child’s foot or dip the foot
into the paint. Now press the foot firmly onto the square of
construction paper. Lift the foot off and let the paint dry.
When paint is dry turn the foot print upside down so the heel is
at the top and put two dots for eyes on the heel, you now have a
“foot ghost.” you can frame this or decorate the edges with
anything you feel contributes to the “ghost” theme.

* Now here’s another idea that I had that stemmed from this. You could make a whole year of Baby’s First Year Keepsakes. But use the Bread dough or other favorite salt/bread dough recipe to make oval ornaments or hangings. Press the baby’s foot into a flattened piece of oval shaped dough at each holiday. Then after its dried/baked you can paint it in the colors of the holiday or even add painted pictures of different symbols of the holiday. You could have a whole first year of your baby’s magical year in ornaments or wall hangings! One for each turn of the Wheel.

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