Stocking Up the Herb Cabinet

stocking-up-herbsThis will be a memorable Thanksgiving holiday for a number of reasons including watching my toddler eat Thanksgiving dinner for the first time! As it relates to my study of herbs, it will be remembered as the weekend when I finally jumped in and actually bought some herbs to begin my apothecary with! I love gaining knowledge and would constantly be looking up recipes saying, “Yes, I need that on hand for colds, or teething, or backaches, etc.” but I would not have any of the necessary ingredients on hand.

So, while my husband was outside freezing in his tree stand while deer hunting, I was warm & cozy in bed doing my Black Friday shopping on my phone. Because I hate shopping in person, and where to you go to buy herbs in person anyway?

Herbs for Children’s Health by Rosemary Gladstar and Meagan’s “Start Here” page on her blog Growing up Herbal were huge helps in deciding what to buy to have on hand. Meagan has seven different articles of lists of herbs that you should start with, have on hand for babies, have for newborns, have for winter immune support, for coughs, for fevers, etc. I browsed through her suggestions to help me finalize my decisions on which herbs to begin with.

I settled on ordering the following and have included in brief why I purchased them, as much for your information as for my reminding! This is in no way comprehensive, either as a list of herbs to have on hand or as an explanation for why you would want to purchase them. I welcome all suggestions or further ideas for using my herbs.

Activated Charcoal Powder to have on hand as first aid in case of accidental poison ingestion, food poisoning, or to use topically for drawing toxins out of bug bites.

Calendula to use in a cream for treating wounds & pain/inflammation. I’m also considering it as a tea for stomach upset or other inflammation.

Catnip to add to a tea for teething, treating stomach upset, and calming

Whole Chamomile Flowers, the “healing wonder” to be used as a tea & tincture for soothing nerves and digestion.

Dandelion Leaf to make into a gentle detox tea because I did not gather enough like I was intending this summer!

Echinacea to boost our immune systems to prevent illness going around or at the first sign of a problem.

Whole Elderberries to use in a syrup to boost the immune system, fight viruses, and eliminate congestion.

Whole Fennel Seeds To add to my tummy/teething tea for my kids and to take as a tincture myself to enrich and increase my milk supply for the new baby in the spring.

Ginger Root to make into a tea or tincture to have on hand for colds, infections, nausea etc. I should have had this ready for the first trimester of this pregnancy, but I was having trouble keeping anything down.

Whole Lavender Flowers to make into an infused oil to help with soothing little ones to sleep, burns, etc.

Lemon Balm to make into a tea or tincture for use in treating viral infections, thrush, for calming purposes etc. Not to mention it smells & tastes great!

Licorice root to make into a syrup, tea, tincture, etc. for treating viral infections, sore throats, respiratory issues and such. I will also be adding this to other herbs to give my concoctions a more palatable taste

Marshmallow Root as a soothing tincture or tea for healing irritated membranes like sore throats, digestive problems, and bladder irritation.

Mullein I am sure there are many other things to do with this herb, but I bought it to make a mullein/garlic oil for treating ear infections. Thankfully I haven’t dealt with this yet, but I want to be prepared!

Whole Olive Leaf to use as an antiviral

Red Clover to make into a tea for treating respiratory problems, as a blood purifier, and potentially to use with nettle, which I already have, to fight allergies.

Red Raspberry Leaf mainly for myself as this pregnancy progresses and I deliver & begin nursing

Yarrow Flowers to use as a tea to stimulate the immune system as we head deeper into cold & flu season. And Christmas cookie sugar overload season.

Cut Cramp Bark to make into a tincture to have on hand to relieve muscle aches, to deal with menstrual cramping well into the future, and potentially to help stop premature labor if that is ever a concern, but I have not researched that thoroughly enough yet.

So, that is it for my purchases of ready to use herbs! Along with the Stevia, Oregano, Parsley, Mint (things I grew in my garden) Nettle, Oatstraw, and Passionflower I already have on hand, this order should well-equip me to care for my family’s basic health issues in the coming months. I’m sure it will also show me just how many more herbs I desperately need lol, but I need to prove to myself and my husband that I can actually follow through and use the ones I have first! Now it’s your turn; leave a comment & let me know what your favorites are and what you recommend I add to my stash in the coming months.

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