Saturday, October 10, 2009

Happy Herb Day and An Update on My Herbal Journey

I didn't know that such a holiday existed until recently, too. From the Herb Day website:

HerbDay is a coordinated series of independently produced public educational events celebrating the importance of herbs and herbalism. HerbDay was conceived of by five nonprofit organizations with interests in herbs and herbalism (the HerbDay Coalition) to raise public awareness about the significance of herbs in our lives and the many ways herbs can be used safely and creatively for health, beauty care, and culinary enjoyment. Greater familiarity with herbs will increase informed use of herbal products and build public support for maintaining personal choice in the use of botanicals.

The St. Petersburg event will be held October 10 from 10 AM to 4 PM at Acupuncture & Herbal Therapies, 901 Central Ave, St. Petersburg. The event is free and open to the public. There will be lectures, free herb and food tasting, Kava Kava bar, herb plants for sale, free movies showing and opportunities to visit with various representatives from the local herbal industry to learn about the uses of herbs in health and well-being. Lectures will be held every 45 minutes throughout the day on subjects such as Herbal Skin Care, Growing Herbs in Florida, Herb and Drug Interactions, Becoming an Herbalist, Making Herbal Medicines, Cooking with Herbs and other topics.

My Own Personal Herbal Journey: I thought this would be an appropriate time to share where I'm at and how I'm doing in my own personal herbal journey. I received Lesson One of Rosemary Gladstar's The Science & Art of Herbalism and quickly got to reading. I picked up a recycled notebook for some note taking and some large index cards to start organizing my materia medica. I ordered some reference books that Rosemary recommended and have already received a couple.

I very much need to experiment, play, and get to know the herbs that I'm studying, but I ran into a little snag. There are a couple of herb shops in my area, but I'm finding that neither has what I'm looking for. One specializes in Traditional Chinese Medicine, so the majority of their stock is Chinese herbs. The other should probably be considered a vitamin and supplement shop that happens to have some dried herbs. I'm going to see what I find at the Herb Day fair today, but it looks like I'm going to wind up doing some ordering online. This is good and bad. I have a few places recommended to me by Rosemary's course and also know that Mountain Rose Herbs has a stellar reputation, so I do have options it's just a bit inconvenient. It also makes me think that my idea to open a tea and herb shop might be a welcome resource since one doesn't already exist (or did it exist and fail?). Anyway, ordering some herbs and getting to know them is next on the agenda. I'm really looking forward to this part!

There's a lot to take in and I have to keep reminding myself to take it easy. I've always had an interest in the healing abilities of herbs, but have never studied it to this extent. I'm learning something brand new and quite detailed and just need to take my time and enjoy learning instead of freaking out about how I'm going to remember all of it!

Also, recently I made a batch of garlic honey based on a blog post over at Aquarian Bath. It should be ready for use this weekend! Scott and I wind up getting a sore throat at some point or another during cold & flu season, so this will be perfect to have on hand for teas. This was also the same day that I tried making soap for the first time. That didn't go so well. Thanks for the help though, Cory! It will be better next time!

I kind of would like to continue to share my journey with all of you, but think it would probably be best to start a new blog dedicated to it. My problem: coming up with a name for it. Suggestions??


mermaiden said...

such a wilderness of discovery awaiting :D

i already gave my vote for your new endeavor name, Athena's Apothecary.

Can't wait to see what you post after herb day ;p

Aquarian Bath said...

Very cool. Thanks for the mentions. I just got home from teaching herbs in St. Aug. Did you make it to the St. Pete event?

Not sure if you should start a new blog or not. I tend to put a lot of herb and garden posts on my blog which is supposed to be body products mostly. I also do other random topics from time to time. I think some ppl stretch themselves thin with too many blogs, but I don't know.

Athena's Armoury said...

Julie, after some thought, I actually looked into Athena's Apothecary. The name is already being used and I wouldn't want to get confused with someone else.

Cory, very valid point. I had two Etsy shops open at one point and truly could not devote the time needed to both. I was just thinking that people interested in my chain maille may not be the same people interested in herbalism. I'll keep everything over here for now (at least because I have no name for a new blog) and see how it goes.