Aromatherapy: Herbs for the Holidays

http://www.motherearthliving.com/Natural-Health/aromatherapy-herbs-for-the-holidays.aspx

B.StansfieldBrenda Stansfield is a licensed massage therapist, certified clincial aromatherapist and the creator of the Clear My Head product line, sold in spas nationally at www.clearmyhead.com. She belives aromatherapy should be simple and easy to incorporate into a hectic lifestyle.

Here come the holidays! For many of us, that means merriment and overindulgence. Try as we might, we find ourselves decking the halls, shopping frantically and attending party after party. To help out with your holiday festivities and the inevitable aftermath let me offer a few ways to incorporate aromatherapy into your holiday season.
 
1. Since much of the holidays are spent indoors, it makes sense to use essential oils to diffuse in the air. Not only can your home smell of wonderful aromas such as cinnamon, clove, sweet orange, fir, or even exotic frankincense, you’ll be protecting your family and guests by inhibiting airborne germs that cause many wintertime illnesses. Take it one step further—wipe down countertops with your favorite fragrance and mix. 

(The Herb Companion loves Homeology’s plant-based cleaning products.)

2. Use ½ cup distilled water with 15 drops essential oil in a glass spray bottle to spray the damp, musty odors from your upholstery. (Always test fabrics and surfaces in an inconspicuous area before using a blend.) 
 
3. With your house in order, you’ll want to send out holiday cards or invitations to your holiday party. Make sure you do one week of planning before mailing them. Use a cotton ball and add a drop or two of seasonal essential oils. (We love fir needle, cinnamon or sweet orange.) Put the cotton ball in the box of cards and close the lid. In one week they will be filled with your fragrance and delight its receiver even more.
 
4. When it’s time for you to open your house to your holiday guests, don’t forget to throw a log or two in the fire. A few drops of an essential oil, such as sandalwood, on each log will impart a lovely atmosphere for guests.

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Photo by _christian m/Courtesty Flickr
http://www.flickr.com/photos/7908355@N06/

5. Of course, there is always a guest or two (or perhaps the host?) who may overindulge in the “spirits” of the season. To face the next day, be sure to have your aromatherapy-hangover-kit ready to go: Use peppermint or fennel tea to treat nausea; apply lavender at the temples to quiet your pounding head; and bathe with grapefruit, lemon, or fennel essential oils to help detoxify your body by increasing your urine production. Also, drink plenty of water—then solemnly promise to behave better NEXT time!
 
6. Holidays demand gifts. This year, vow not to have gifts break your budget or consume all of your time. Check out your local book seller and find books that use essential oils for making quick, inexpensive, yet personal, presents. Lotions, bath salts and herbal vinegars are just a few ideas to get you started. I am sure you will find many ideas here at The Herb Companion site as well!

(Try giving herbal oils and butters as simple and delicious gifts.)

7. Take the money you saved and treat yourself to a long deserved treat—maybe take in a holiday performance, indulge in a massage or treat the kids to an uninterrupted day of outdoor fun.


Remember, the holiday should be healthy and fun—try to minimize this year and savor the simple things in life. Take a deep breath of your favorite scent before bed each night and reflect on the joys of each day. In this way, your soul is fed as well. Take care and my best wishes to you and yours for a wonderful, meaningful and aromatic holiday!