Fennel: Benefits, Uses, & Concerns

fennelFennel. Delicious, aromatic, soothing, and a Godsend to anyone with a colicky baby.

Fennel seeds have been described as one of the best herbs to use for digestive issues. It is safe enough to use for cranky babies yet gently effective enough to be described as nature’s Pepto Bismal. It is an antacid that neutralizes excessive amounts of acid in the stomach. (Herbs for Children’s Health) The seeds can be ground and made into a tea, infused into an oil to rub on irritated tummies, or taken as a tincture.

What do these little licorice scented seeds do? Prepare to be amazed . . .

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Garlic & Mullein Oil for Ear Infections

dsc_1028Crying, pulling on red, irritated little ears, boogery noses & cold symptoms that go along with it. Uhg. The dreaded ear infection. Fortunately we have not dealt with ear infections with our toddler yet, but I like to be prepared with the knowledge and supplies to treat things as they come up. Continue reading

Using Herbs for Babies & Kids

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Using herbs for kids can be incredibly beneficial, but also rather nerve-wracking. Sometimes it seems easier to just head to the pediatrician for some professional advice on your little munchkins’ earache or cough. Now I want to make it clear that  I definitely believe conventional medicine has it’s place. However I also want to encourage you to educate yourself enough to be able to confidently treat the everyday issues that crop up like colic and colds, as well as provide complementary treatment for more serious issues that you decide to treat more conventionally.

Discussing EVERYTHING pertaining to using herbs with children or EVERY herb to use/avoid would be outside the realm of one blog post. That said, I do want to share some basic principles regarding using herbs for kids that can help guide your treatment. I also want to share a short list of go-to herbs that are considered very safe for babies & children. Continue reading

Medicinal Herb Seed Purchase; Indoor/Outdoor Gardening

medicinal-herbs-from-seed

A cold dreary December day lulled to bored restlessness by the steady drizzle of rain. The perfect day to get new seed catalogs with pages exploding with life and color and fresh energy for spring. The seed companies really know what they are doing sending out catalogs right at the beginning of winter!

One of my plans for this winter, as I have mentioned, is attempting to start some herb seeds in the house so I have some healthy little plants to place outside come spring when I am more focused on  recovering after having our new daughter.  Continue reading

New Week New Recipe: Elderberry Syrup

elderberry-syrup-recipeMonday is a day for fresh beginnings, tackling everything you ignored to spend time with your family on the weekend, and making new plans. My plan, especially as the cold sets in and winter is officially upon us, is to figure out how to prevent my family and myself from getting the flu bugs and colds that are going around. That means trying a new recipe!

Cue the Elderberry Syrup!

What is Elderberry Syrup, you ask? Continue reading

What do Herbs have to do with Homeschooling?

herbalism-and-homeschoolingWhy an herbal homeschool?

I just updated my domain name to be theherbalhomeschool.com. This has led to some reflection on my blog name and what it really means to be an herbal HOMEschool as opposed to sharing information as a herbal “school” or our homestead or any other cheesy name I could think up (and I am pretty good at that, let me tell you!)

I was homeschooled for 10 years, from 2nd grade through graduation.

Best Christmas present EVER! After spending a year in public school and 1.5 years in a private Christian school, I was more stressed and uptight than any eight year old should be. I begged to be homeschooled for months before winter break and all I asked for at Christmas was a note saying we could homeschool. I got it! We gathered up all my school supplies & books from the school and never looked back. Aside from repenting & becoming a Christian at a young age, being homeschooled by my incredible mom was easily one of the top things that has most influenced me throughout my life. Let me elaborate on how our vision for education influences my interest in herbalism. . . Continue reading

Herbal Tea; Infusions & Decoctions

herbal-tea-infusions-and-decoctionsTeas, Tinctures, Infusions, Decoctions, Oils, Salves, Capsules, etc. The number of different ways to prepare herbs can set your mind spinning! Not to mention the extra ingredients needed such as glycerin or alcohol for tinctures or beeswax for salves.

With so many choices at hand, I decided to stop stalling and begin with the most straightforward; teas.

After all, what could be more simple than putting some crumbly dry herbs in a jar of hot water? Turns out there are many nuances that need to be considered, Continue reading