Category: Herbal Wisdom

The Herbal Oracle

I thought the way I related to herbs was strange.  Many plant allies came to me when I was sleeping and told me what  I needed to make  for others.  I did not know why the Ancestors would wake me up in the wee hours of the morning or keep me up late into the night so I could  make special blends that would be used for magic.  Every blend had a song, a number, a sacred combination, or specific colors.  Each blend was created in alignment with days of the week and the moon cycles, each blend had a story to unfolded and had to be shared with the receiver.

These were the early days of my practice as an intuitive herbalist and folk healer.  I denied this type of healing for a long time.  I did not want to considered strange or weird and I did not understand I was being taken over by the ancestors.  I can not tell you how many years I tried to fit into the mainstream herbalist community.  I was searching for a place to belong.  I thought of all kinds of creative wordles to put together to describe my way “prescribing” remedies until I surrendered to what everyone was calling me MEDICINE WOMAN.

I came to realized I just do not fit in.  I never have really and at this rate I never will.  I thank God that I have stopped trying.  Well….. that’s not entirely true, every now and then, that scared part of myself who thinks she needs approval from others, will pop her head out in my consciousness and try to run my business.  When I notice her, I remind her it’s okay to be different and gently remove her from my drivers seat.

I have surrendered to the fact I will never understand the science of herbalism.  I will never be able to explain the why in scientific terms. My task is to connect, remember, listen and share from a space of, not what I learned, but what I remember. I have embraced my way, and  alas that is good enough.  My days as an intuitive herbalist have far exceeded my wildest dreams. So much goes into my healing sessions and herbal readings. I no longer fear strange in me. I welcome this part of me more and more everyday. Right now as I write this, the trees are speaking to me with the rustling of their  leaves. They sound like a thousand rattles calling me home. Life is good!

On my birthday The Herbal Oracle was born.  The Herbal Oracle is a system of divination that uses our bones of the earth,  the stones,  to translate the messages of our plant allies.  The Oracle is partnered with a cosmological wheel  that combines several teachings from various philosophies. Each stone is hand painted by me and encoded with a Light frequency.

The Herbal Oracle is a tool for understanding, healing and transformation. She is yet another way the great plant allies want to share their wisdom and medicine with others. As they remind me, there are many ways to use sacred plant medicine, I am simply a servant and conduit for their Light.

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The Herbal Oracle with her sister companion Message From Shadow Cards by Keri Nola.

 

While connecting with my Sistar Keri Nola, the creator of Messages From Shadow Oracle Cards, the two systems attuned themselves.  Now, more often than not, the Messages from Shadow cards, beautifully complement a Shamanic Herbal Reading providing further insight and wisdom.  Using this tool has become a part of my individual healing sessions, and The Herbal Oracle has woven her way into almost all that I do for others and myself. She helps me create blends for others and her Light frequency supports me even when she is not physically present.

She shares this message with you now:

Wherever you are on your journey to uncovering your greatest talents, medicine, or offerings, you are enough just as you are.  The ancient wisdom contained in your belly is all you need. Believe in yourself and your Divine path.  Your time is now! Get yourself out there and stop trying to fit in where you do not belong.

May the Light of your life be uncovered and may it never be dimmed again.

If you would like a personal shamanic herbal reading, you can reach me through our contact page or you can go directly to this link.

Simple Herbal Rituals For The Season

It is customary during the cooler and colder months to forget about using our green allies on a daily basis.  I know for me I tend to spend less time outside when it is cold.  I am a Florida girl, so I admit that I feel most alive in warmer weather.  However, every season lends its herbal majick  for supporting our lives.

One way I stay connected to nature in colder months here is Florida, is to bring nature inside and find creative ways to deepen my connection to her bounty.  Eating seasonally is always first on my list and for those of us who  celebrate the Winter Solstice by decorating live trees with natural items is another way to stay connected to our natural world. There are those family activities such as creating  natural holiday reefs  or creating a winter bouquet  of evergreen plant material.

Still there are other ways to create herbal rituals during  the season. Herbal ritual is when one brings  sacred intention to their interactions with plants. A simple act of drinking a cup of tea can become a ritual by doing two things: 1. inviting mindful attention, as well as,  heart and meaning to the experience and 2. inviting Spirit to be present for a sacred intent. Remembering these two things for any ritual will serve you well and elevate your experiences from the mundane to the Sacred.

Here are 2 ways you can bring simple herbal rituals to the winter season.

  1. Make a personal  New Year’s smudge stick. In some cultures the smoke of a smudge stick or incense is very sacred. The smoke carries our prayers and invokes the ancestors to intervene in our lives for the  highest good of all. The choice of herbs also has significance  in the energies one is trying to invoke. Setting New Year’s resolutions, I am not fond of, however I do set sacred intentions for the new year and invite my heavenly help as a witness. Before New Year’s Eve I create several smudge sticks.  I look for various  fresh herbs in yard or at the local nursery. I choose them with care.  I follow my intuition and trust, whatever I choose is what I need.  I bundled them together and tie them with raffia. Allow them to dry  for at least a week or two.  On the night of New Year’s Eve, I will create a sacred fire and burn my personal smudge sticks. Each stick may hold a different intention, prayer or good wish.  I then intend that the smoke takes these intentions to Creator and the Ancestors for continued support throughout the new year.  Consider including your family and friends in this ritual or keep it personal.  Again allow your intuition to guide you.
  2. Create A Renewal Foot Bath. Each week we have the opportunity to start  new.  We can set new goals, focus on new projects and re energize our spirits. Soaking my feet weekly is a wonderful way to symbolize that I am walking a renewed path, last week is gone and the future holds promise as I move forward. Again the choice of herbs is significant and a little research about the spiritual properties of herbs will serve you well, also tapping into your inner wisdom should not be discounted.   I love creating spice blends, specially during the winter months.  The  colors, textures and warming energy is energizing to my entire body.  Combine a handful of your favorite seeds, bark, twigs and leaves and make a big pot of herbal tea.  Allow the tea to cool, strain out the plant material and then add warm tea to a basin of more warm water. Soak your feet while setting your sacred intentions for the coming week.

If this is your first time including herbs in your seasonal rituals have fun and do not make things so serious.  Bring laughter and lightheartedness to your experience and the spirit of celebration. Enjoy!


Schedule A  Shamanic Herbal Reading With Chonteau

I offer a unique  intuitive herbal reading for those who are open  to the wisdom of our green allies.  Our green allies have so much to share with us about  how we can rebalance our lives and cultivate more centeredness in all that we do.  I offer customized herbal blends at the end of each session upon request. Learn more about this unique reading here.   

Herbal Support For Ascension Symptoms

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Often times I will wake up with herbal allies on my mind.  Our green allies have a way of entering into our dream time to bring healing and messages of how they want to support us. This morning was one of those mornings when much was being shared in the realm of spirit.  Have you ever noticed in those twilight spaces of waking and sleep the veil is at its thinnest? For many years I have embraced what I call my twilight hour of power to receive my daily guidance.

This morning I was reminded, that with  our  ascension process, our new light bodies will experience some physical symptomologies as it expands.  On one hand we will try to  manage  these  symptoms with conventional therapies,  however, we may find the results we seek do not come, or  are only temporarily remedied. I was also reminded to use our green allies, the plants, in their many forms to support us throughout this process. Like  many of our elements and nature items, our green allies are here to be our guides, healers and teachers into the next realms of existance.

If I am to speak from my own experiences, there are days when I think I am loosing my mind, and my heart is being jolted from my body.  In our process of ascending to a higher consciousness our bodies are recalibrating, readjusting and realigning to a  purer frequency. Our hearts and circulatory systems are being replaced and  coming on line  We are waking up our galactic souls and seeing life from an entirely different perspective.

This brings me to this mornings twilight hour of power.  For a couple of weeks I have noticed my eyes coming in and out of focus.  Even when I wear my glasses, it seems  there is still a haze or fuzziness. This morning Bilberry (Vaccinium myrtillus) floated into my consciousness. Bilberry leaf is known as an eye supporting herb on the physical level but it can also support the eyes on a spiritual and energetic level. Bilberry leaf can assist with the symptoms we feel through our ascension process when it comes to our new perceptions and visions.  Dried Bilberry

Our eyes are not just gateways to our souls they are gateways to other dimensions of Light and  are used like lasers when it comes to healing.  There are times when I have felt pressure behind my eyes, tiredness, weepiness and stinging when it comes to my eyes responding to the recalibration.  I have talked with several colleagues and they have reported similar symptoms.  If I were to respond from fear I might think I am going blind.  Interestingly enough, that is exactly what is happening. There is a type of blindness to nonsense  and a laser focus on what we need to see for our transition to a higher plane.

We are not crazy and we are not going physically blind. We are however awakening to our  star born technologies that is unique to each of us and our plant allies are here to guide us and support us on this journey.

Bilberry is one such green ally that is coming forward to share her wisdom with us.  She is not the only one that can help us with our ascension process there are many more. In posts to come I will share more ways in which we can use our green allies to support our expansion.

I made an intentional  herbal infusion of bilberry this morning and within 5 minutes my eyes felt better. The pressure was released and not one tear all day. I also feel she can be used as an eyewash or a smudge. If you have not gotten to know Bilberry Leaf now is the time.  Spend some time with this plant in nature, journey with her a bit before using her. Open your heart to her medicine and see what she has to share. You can also experiment with the dried leaves.  I used 1 tbsp of herbs to 2 cups of boiled water and steep with a little honey for 30 minutes.

As will any herbal use, always use with care and check in with your healthcare provider prior to use.

Need some shamanic herbal support? Learn more about my Shamanic Herbal Readings with this link: Shamanic Herbal Reading Info Link 

 

Earth Day Is Everyday

Nature is not just my mother, but my father, siblings, aunties, uncles and cousins. Basically, Nature is my kinfolk and I welcome opportunities to get to know Nature and her many dimensions  all tIMG_1389he time.  I would definitely say, I have awakened my earthen soul and celebrating Earth Day has very little to do with it.

I know, I know, all us spiritified generation Xer’s and others,  love our Earth Day celebrations.  We get all dressed up in our eco friendly clothing and jump from one festival to the next all weekend long. We eat vegan food,  look for crystals and gemstones in every form and listen to pretty cool bands.  If we are feeling adventurous, we take a jaunt to WholeFoods and partake in the free samples and discounts, and let’s not  forget the drum circle to complete the weekend.

This however, this not the way of deepening our relationship with  Nature. In order to develop and maintain a solid relationship with Nature, I have to put my ear to the ground and listen, which means, I have to slow down and stop. My earthen soul is that part of myself that is nature. She is the part of me that is the howling winds, tall trees and peaceful lakes. She is the part of me that understands, before I can respect planet earth, I have to respect planet Chonteau and when I am respecting planet Chonteau, I am respecting planet earth because we are kinfolk.

Earth Day had its resurgence in 1990. It was that year  I asked my dad what he was going to do for Earth Day.  He said “plant a tree”. Every year after that until I left home, on Earth Day, we planted a tree in the backyard of my childhood home. The next year was spent nurturing that tree until it was strong.

Earth Day is everyday, because everyday I remind myself that I need to be in my  body. I choose to be presenIHM seriest.  I think the earth suffers when we as a nation are absent from who we really are. The more we check out of our bodies the more the earth dies. The principle of correspondence teaches us that, “as above so below; as below so above”.

It is time to Awaken Your Earthen Soul and not just get in your body but stay there.  By respecting, trusting and nourishing planet human we respect, trust and nourish  planet earth.

Check out this short Free webseries which will help us slow down and  connect deeply with nature

Awaken Your Earthen Soul 

4 Kitchen Spices That Pack A Healthy Punch

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Herbs and Spices have a rich history with some spices having a greater wealth than precious metals. Spices, which  have had wars fought over them, are revered by many cultures and mostly because of  their medicinal value. (The Spice House Lore of Spices).  The definition of a spice varies but for the most part spices are the dried aromatic seeds, bark, flowers and fruit of an edible plant. However depending who you ask and what region they live depends upon the definition you will receive.

Modern science is beginning to prove the health benefits of common herbs and spices,  so much so that,  you can not read a household magazine without an article  showcasing  a particular spice and its positive impact on our bodies. Here are a few of my top picks for spices that pack a power punch when it comes to our health.

  1. Black Pepper which comes from the vine piper nigrum stimulates our digestion and warms our bronchial passageways which can help with clearing congestion. I add black pepper to  most of my meals to aid in digestion.
  2. Vanilla Bean is one  of new favorite spices.  Though this is not a cheap spice she has wonderful qualities in relieving stress,  headaches and stomach upsets.  My husband loves making  his own vanilla extract out of fresh vanilla bean and I love soaking fresh vanilla in witch hazel to make my own stress relieving spray.
  3. Turmeric also call herbal gold is making quite a name for herself. Ayurvedic practitioners have been using turmeric for centuries as an anti inflammatory, free radical scavenger, digestive aid, blood detoxifier and is wonderful for the skin health. I love adding a tsp of turmeric to my hot almond milk with a pinch of raw cacao powder.
  4. Fennel seeds has saved me on many occasion when my stomach was feel sour.  Fennel seeds  support our digestive tracks acting a  carminative, which means they ease flatulence and indigestion.  Fennel is known as an  anti-inflammatory, eases sore throats and used to freshen one’s breath.  I am know to make a fennel tea for my children to ease their upset stomachs. Fennel has also been used to clear congestion and strengthen ones bronchial passageways.

If you notice, many of these spices have very similar medicinal values, that is because most spices are considered warming to our bodies. Warming spices support our digestion, skin, and are generally anti-inflammatory, so you will find lots of overlapping.  This great new, because you can incorporate  many flavors and still get the  health benefits you are looking for.

I have found the easiest and safest way to incorporate herbs and spices into our lives is in our food. Finding creative ways to add these four spices into your diet could have the positive  health effects you have been looking for. Of course check with your primary care doctor before changing any parts of your diet.

Want to learn more about culinary herbalism, join me for my next herbal class Kitchen Spices for Health.

5 Tips To Clear Negativity From Your Office Space

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As a Healer it is really important to keep my office/healing space clear of negativity, stagnation, fear  and other unwanted energies.  As Coaches, it’s no secret that our clients share a lot of what is not working in their lives.  We are the container that holds  the space them them to vent, clear and release what holds them back.  Well, where do you think those thoughts and words go? A lot of the times they get stuck in the corners of our offices and healing rooms.  This is why spiritually clearing our spaces on a regular basis is so important to keep the  energy vibrant and fresh.

During times of epidemics in Europe thyme fumigations were used to rid the area of sickness. Dried Thyme was burned in the streets.  Using this same philosophy, one can burn other herbs, also called smudging,  to help c00B03934-A3F1-4A7A-92E6-83343FE9FC8Clean an environment of unwanted energies or enhance an environment by invoking energies that are helpful to an area.

From this Modern Day Shaman, here are a few of my top tips for  keeping your office/healing  space  clear.

  1. Think prevention:  Keep an incense or  candle burning when meeting with a client. Smudge your office regularly.  Have numerous water elements around your office such as a fountain, water plants and placing a bowl of water with fresh leaves behind the door.  The water will absorb negative energy, be sure to change the water daily.
  2. Clean the floors and walls with flower water.  Every week I like to clean my office floors and walls with flower water.  Flower water is a sacred water created by Medicine People.  The flower water is anointed and can be added to a cloth that is used to wipe down the walls and floors of your office. If you do not have flower water use lemon and sage essential oils with water.
  3. Dust and wipe down your desk and cabinets.  Do not let dust collect in your office. Dust carries germs both physically and spiritually.
  4. Meditate and Pray.  Did you know the more you meditate and pray in an area the greater you raise the vibration.  Think about it. Why do sacred sites feel so amazing? People come from all over to pray and meditate they are creating a vortex of healing energy.  You can do the same in your space.
  5. Have crystals around your space. Rose quartz, quartz crystals, fire agate to name a few are excellent for absorbing and deflecting negative energies. They also add positive qualities to your space.

I have been in the healing business a very long time and one of the things my clients have always said is how wonderful my space feels.  That is not by chance it  is by design.

Herbs and Children

My little guy gathering herbs from the garden.

My little guy gathering herbs from the garden.

When I was pregnant with my first child I had already been incorporating plant medicine into my life for 10 years.  Drinking medicinal herbal teas, making herbal syrups, and tinctures were common place in my life, so the thought of using these same healing methods with my child was easy. Before taking any classes on using herbs I taught myself.  I started researching, reading,  experimenting, and developing relationships with the plants and it was through this process I was able to effectively prevent and treat myself  and my family from common ailments.

Becoming a more aware of how to use plant medicine with your children takes time but, it is well worth the investment.  Let me  explain the difference between herbal plant medicine and supplements.  To me supplements are a combination of synthetic and nonsynthetic herbals, vitamins and minerals that come in capsules, caplets and powdered forms.  They are intended to supplement your lifestyle and add greater nourishment to your daily diet. Plant medicine on the other hand, is using fresh or dried  plant materials on their own or in combination with other other  foods and drink to support and nourish one’s  health and lifestyle.

For example dandelion is a leafy green vegetable and can be juiced, added to vinegar, eaten in a salad, cooked or dried  and used to make syrups, extracts and herbal tea.  To me  taking a dandelion capsule for liver support  can not compare to all the ways dandelion can assists us if we used it in its natural form.  The problem is,  most of us do not know where to get loose herbs or how to use them with our children without taking an 8 week herbal course.

Believe it or not you do not need an 8 week herbal course to use herbs with your children.  If you know some basic herbal knowledge, where to get your herbs and two or three herbal preparation methods you can start using herbs with your children safely and effectively.   Earlier this year I taught at the Florida Herbal Conference and one of the products I created was a  Herbal Medicine Making Kit for Herbs and Children. This kit was designed specifically for the beginning kitchen herbalist who wants to learn how to use herbs with her children easily and effectively.  What is great about this Herbal Medicine Kit is that  I  include a herbal class CD, Herbs and Children, that matches the kit. So I actually tutor you on how  to use not just the herbs included in the kit but basic herbal wisdom that builds your skills and confidence.

I am really excited about this Herbal Medicine Making Kit because it is such an easy way to get started taking your child’s health into your own hands.  Many of the moms I have worked with feel so empowered, when they can manage a fever without drugs,  or help their child’s tummy ache without antacids.  You have know idea how good it feels when my 15  and 8 year old can come to me and say “mom I need the elderberry,  I am getting a cold” or when they bump themselves and ask me for the comfrey oil.  Pretty cool.

Here are a few tips to get you started using herbs with children.

  • Get a good book;  Rosemary Gladstar’s Family Herbal is great.
  • Get your organic dried herbs from a reputable source; Mountain Rose Herbs is one of the best.
  • Start using one or two herbs at at time, that way if your child has an allergic reaction you will know what it is.
  • Herbal infusions or herbal teas are a great place to start.  Infusions are when you steep  1 tsp of dried herbs in one cup of boiled water, they tend to be mild and can be sweetened with honey.
  • Not everything you read about herbs on line is accurate.  Check multiple sources.

I hope this helps you on your journey of becoming an herbal mom or dad.  If you need help post your question in the comments section.  I am available for creating personal blends as well as herbal consultations.

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