Celebrating milestone with nature’s beauty

by Renee Lindstrom, GCFP

This is the time of year to have a birthday!  Imagine the edible bounty that is on display almost moment by moment as it emerges!  To celebrate with a good friend the morning began with foraging out in the yard.

Garnish

The edible garnish you see are pansy, cherry blossoms  forget me nots on the celebratory dessert.   On the plate the edible garnish you see fresh native current (of the Pacific Northwest), wild English daisy, dandelion, rosemary, butterbur, polyanthus, forsythia and oxalis flowers, wild garlic chives, and columbine leaves. The hard boiled egg was dyed with scotch broom flowers the evening before.  

Salad

The salad the ingredients was what was available that morning.  We had overwintered veggies; red lettuce, small kale and Swiss chard leaves, hairy bitter cress, purple dead nettle, dandelion, malva, yellow dock and herb Robert leaves (weeds),  rosemary, mint and oregano leaves, angelica and fennel, chives and the leaves from the flowers; creeping jennyoxalis, barren strawberries, butterbur, hollyhock, forget me nots.  

Soup

Began with a beef broth and miso.  The ingredients added came from the yard.  These included overwintered leeks, kale and Swiss chard together with a few herbs, rosemary and oregano.  Sprinkled on top – rosemary flowers.

Tea

Tea was a wonderful infusion of bay laurel leaves!

Keeping it simple, for me,  heightens the flavours of all the ingredients and there isn’t the heaviness of eating afterwards, only a sense of full filled that lasts through out the day! That means no snacking!!!!

I heard back that this was the best birthday lunch ever!


Traditional uses and properties of herbs are for educational purposes only.  This information is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.  Every attempt has been made for accuracy, but none is guaranteed. Any serious health concerns or if you are pregnant, you should always check with your health care practitioner before self-administering herbs.

Can you make tea from your herb n’ flowers you use in your infused baths?

by Renee Lindstrom, GCFP

2017-03-25 11.57.36

Herbs, Flowers ‘n Roots

As part of the infusing  process for a soothing and healing bathing experience I have begun to make tea from the same herbs, flowers and roots as those I use.   I find the experience of drinking the tea as I draw a bath full-filling.  It is satisfying to be treating the outside as great as the inside! For a few moments in my week I am connecting to a fuller awareness of the inside-outside connections.

The herbs, flowers and roots used in this early spring tea and infusion were; feverfew, mullein, butterfly vine, calendula, peony and Nootka rose flowers, mullein, feverfew, celery leaves, spruce needles, and mullein root.  I choose these plants as they are beginning to come to life in our garden and indoors as they sprout from seed.


Become aware of the relationship to what foods & medicinal’s you invite into your experience, inside and outside, for radiant health.  Developing one’s connection to the plants, herbs and trees through gardening, eating and harvesting them increases the body’s alignment to their qualities, whether eating or making healing products (tinctures, oils, teas, and poultice’s) with them.  If you plant seeds, do what the aboriginal gardeners and seed collectors  of Southern Countries still do today, soak the seeds in your mouth a moment before planting!  Now that is an intentional connection!!!!


Traditional uses and properties of herbs are for educational purposes only.  This information is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.  Every attempt has been made for accuracy, but none is guaranteed. Any serious health concerns or if you are pregnant, you should always check with your health care practitioner before self-administering herbs.

March 18th & Already a Back Yard Salad

by Renee Lindstrom, GCFP

In Mid-March buds, leaves and flowers began emerging on the plants in our community. On March 17th some back yard weeds and flowers were added to the salad and by March 18th it was a “back yard salad!”    During the fall and winter you forget the taste of all the fresh differences in using many leaves, herbs and flowers.  There was only one dandelion flower to pick among many weeks bursting through.

On March 19th there was a realization that a forager could begin eating fresh backyard veggies, weeds and flowers for the next few seasons!  As the season age the contents of the backyard salad would change as flowers, weeds and veggies come and go! In the picture above on the 20th ingredients where picked between clients to sit in water until later break! You can see more was added overnight.

Along with the 30 day Turmeric and Black Pepper Challenge,  another one has been made.  The challenge is to continue into Spring and Summer eating only back yard and foraged veggies, leaves, weeds, roots and flowers!   Today will be Day 2!

Read growing list of what’s growing in the backyard!


Traditional uses and properties of herbs are for educational purposes only.  This information is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.  Every attempt has been made for accuracy, but none is guaranteed. Any serious health concerns or if you are pregnant, you should always check with your health care practitioner before self-administering herbs.

Medicine Wheel Garden Design Integrating the Seasons

©2017 Renee Lindstrom, GCFP

Medicine-Wheel- Calendar

Each quadrant of the North American Aboriginal Medicine Wheel reflects a cardinal direction and time of year.  In an earlier post I introduced a Personal Healing Garden design in the shape of a Medicine Wheel.

Following this plan in your own Healing Garden integration can begin with the laying of the cardinal directions as suggested in the original post.  To deepen the connection and further integrate its symbology, one could consider the four seasons and align them with the plants you choose for these quadrants!  As example could be to plant feature plants that would come into bloom or fruit during that season.  In spring it could be your early bloomers, in summer you veggies, in fall your harvesting plants and in winter your winter garden.

The purpose of a Personal Healing Garden is to enjoy and have fun with what you create.  This garden reflects deepening your connection to nature, and life force.  This includes creativity, adventure and beauty.

My personal recommendation is to not overwhelm yourself to get instant results.  I would suggest taking your time to consider plants that you want to integrate into your daily lifestyle.   Eliminating the over processing of your fruits, veggies and teas by growing your own can give you a new way of health and wellness.  It can help you cut your appetite  by providing you with a more balanced infusion of minerals and vitamins that are easier for you to absorb.   I have found that using garden plants as a source of food and drinking flavoured teas and water that  it has support a healthier lifestyle change that weight loss was an outcome.  It wasn’t the focus it was a result.


Berries, Edible Flowers, Garden Plants, Trees, Veggies & Weeds for your Healing Garden

Contact Renee for Healthy Landscape Consultation – Explore the messages of your landscape design!


  • Life Balance Garden Design – coming soon
  • Relationship Garden Design – coming soon

Traditional uses and properties of herbs are for educational purposes only.  This information is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.  Every attempt has been made for accuracy, but none is guaranteed. Any serious health concerns or if you are pregnant, you should always check with your health care practitioner before self-administering herbs.

Medicine Wheel Garden Design & Placement

©2017 Renee Lindstrom, GCFP

by Renee Lindstrom

This is a design that could be used for deepened personal healing.  It reflects your personal well-being and health.  It is a universal circular pattern that is designed like our North American Aboriginal’s  Medicine Wheel.

This shape was a spontaneous one that came to me during a time when I was deepening my own personal  healing journey.  I was studying my relationship  connection to nature and the environment, while  at the same time seeking healing ways for a serious health condition and abusive relationship.   With a deepened meditation practice and a longing to heal,  this pattern took shape in my garden.  I simply built the shape with earth mounds.  It was not until years later that I realized it was an exact replica of a medicine wheel design.  In the center I placed a table and two chairs.  This was a space for sitting and reflection and to drink teas infused from the plants growing around in the four quadrants.

This Medicine Garden was under a stand of tall Cyprus Trees that was visited regularly at different times  by Blue Heron, Owls, Hawks, Robin, Crows, Eagles, Raven, Otters, Raccoons, Pheasants, Deer and Cats.

Cardinal Directions

To deepen the benefits of this Medicine Wheel pattern one could align the cardinal directions with the true Cardinal Directions of the property.

Entrance

 

The true entrance to the garden could align with the traditions of the Medicine Wheel.  This direction is from the East.  The above design I created in October of 2014 with colored fabric robes.  It was for a portable meditation experience and the same design as what I created for my healing garden Medicine Wheel in 2001. A pathway circled the quadrants so one could enter from any direction after circling the wheel.

Size

The size will depend upon the space you choose and have to work with.  I do recommend that it is large enough for you to  walk the pathways and to have a  space for sitting in the design.

Types of Plants

  • Planting Design

This is a wonderful design that one can begin to integrate a deepened intention.  The plant colors can co-ordinate with the seasons and symbology of the quadrants and/or represent the 12 astrological signs of the Medicine Wheel itself.  To keep it simple one could begin to plant types of edibles and medicinal plants that have a featured splash of color for every season.

  • Purpose

One does not want to forget the purpose and that is for picking, eating and drying, leaves, stems and roots, for adding to recipes, making teas and personal products!

  • Plants for your Medicinal Garden

    Oregon Grape

    Oregon Grape

I recommend that you choose plants you can integrate into your every day life along with considering plants that your don’t want to see lost in the future.  Scientists base their new medicines on the discovery and imitation of natures natural healing elements.  This has led to the loss of  passing home remedy knowledge on to future generations and in some cases the plants are becoming extinct as developers try to patent them!    One example is over picking of Oregon Grape in the United States and Chaga in Canada!   Above in the picture is an Oregon Grape  that you may recognize from your Pacific Northwest nature walks.  This is a wonderful shrub to have in your healing garden yet a growing fear across North American is that it will disappear with careless picking practices.


Medicine Wheel Garden Design Integrating the Seasons
Berries, Edible Flowers, Garden Plants, Trees, Veggies & Weeds for your Healing Garden
Contact Renee for Healthy Landscape Consultation – Explore the messages of your landscape design!

  • Life Balance Garden Design – coming soon
  • Relationship Garden Design – coming soon

 

Traditional uses and properties of herbs are for educational purposes only.  This information is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.  Every attempt has been made for accuracy, but none is guaranteed. Any serious health concerns or if you are pregnant, you should always check with your health care practitioner before self-administering herbs.

Nature Activities for Children

Fun ways to bring real 3 dimensional nature experiences into your child’s home & learning experiences:

Baby in Camus at Beacon Hill Park

Baby in Camus at Beacon Hill Park

1.  FROM THE OCEAN:

Start a sea glass, shell and a stone collection.  Spend more time walking  along  the beach and begin searching for interesting objects to collect.  Get fun containers to put these special collections on display,  for small hands to continue touching and creating shapes or use them to barter with.  You will find there are endless uses for these special objects and eventually they may become apart of your own garden!  Children will love adding to the collection for years to come.  My grown kids still pick up objects and gift them to me as we walk.  It is a feeling of joy receiving these gifts they are still giving!

2.  FROM THE FOREST:

Spend time gathering cones, leaves and interesting objects from the forest to have on hand for creating objects and seasonal decorations with.  The more crafts made with collected nature items, the more little hands begin touching and experiencing the trees and elements around them.  These items can be stored in containers that grab their attention and may spark projects we haven’t even thought of.  One favorite is using them to make prints or homemade paper!

3.  FROM YOUR GARDEN:

As your garden goes to seed have little fingers gather larger seeds that can become a collection to use in art or store to plant next year.  The young adult Lindstrom children will now suggest it’s time to plant the flowers if they notice it hasn’t been done yet!  Each time it is a reminder of our shared experience.

4.  A TALKING STICK FROM THE BEACH OR TREE:

Have your kids gather an interestingly shape stick that is 6 inches long and 1 to 2 inches thick.  Teach them how to use embroidery thread and begin wrapping the stick changing colors every 1/2 inch.  This would result in 12 bands of color of their choosing.  Encourage them to leave some stick showing at end with a long string hanging down at the end of the stick they finish with.  Have them use this string handing down to add rocks, sea glass, shells or crystals.  Now you and your children have a talking stick to use to resolve differences!

5.  FROM THE MINERALS: 

Begin to take your children to the Science Shop and let them start a mineral collection, or go to the library and get a book on minerals to identify any found in your area.  If young children start a collection for them.  Put them into a see through container that will allow them to become fascinated by them and want to touch and run their hands through them.  Grow their collection and begin to share the values or qualities that the minerals have.  For example a black stone usually has a grounding quality.

 

  • All these activities can be used for counting and making shapes.
  • A favorite task teachers have for children is creating pasting 100 items to construction paper!

 

Living in Nature’s Love by Renee Lindstrom, GCFP,
Feldenkrais® Practitioner since 2007, Communication & Empathy Coach since 2004, Art of Placement  since 2000