Rebecca's Herbal Apothecary and Supply

May 2010 Newsletter

  In This Issue:

Welcome Summer!
May is the month to honor flowers and mothers and the belly of Spring. This is a great time to be proactive and take care of ourselves. Our herb of the month, Violet, has encouraged us to think about breast health.

Many of us have been touched by breast cancer, and we have decided to take this opportunity to talk about it. In addition to good nutrition, healthy lifestyle, and supportive herbs, we need to pay attention to and get familiar with our breasts. Our goal for this month's newsletter is for all women to have a "Boob Buddy".

A "Boob Buddy" is a friend, partner, or loved one who checks in on you, and who you check in with about your breast health. A "Boob Buddy" may ask "Are you doing your self breast exam? Do you have questions about it? Do you need to make an appointment? Do you need me to remind you about it?" Let's talk about this! Rebecca's is in the process of developing a nourishing topical oil for self breast care as a supportive in your breast health regimen.

We do this to honor the memory of those we have lost and for those who are surviving and thriving! Boob Buddies for all! Click here to find out more about self breast exams.

Everyone at Rebecca's also wants to say Happy Mother's Day to all the amazing moms out there. A special happy day and congrats to two former Rebecca's staff members and new parents, Laura DiNardo and Henry Clemmons. Laura and Henry have just had a beautiful baby girl, Tala Lucia Snow Clemmons, born March 19th, 2010. We wish them all the best, and feel particularly smitten with this beautiful little girl as her parents met in our shop. Ahhhhhhhhhhhh.

Welcome Summer!
It's easy to pamper Mom this Mother's Day (Sunday, May 9th). Check out some of our favorite gift ideas below!

coconut rose
Alyson — Decadent Rose Salt Scrub
The soft, grounded scent of this scrub reminds me of the unconditional love and support that mothers provide. What a beautiful way to say I love you, and thank you for everything.

Faith — Fabulous Foot Scrub
Pamper your mom with this amazing scrub that exfoliates, softens and soothes the feet.

Katie — Coconut Rose Oil
A wonderful all body oil for self love, a great gift for moms who give so much.

face serum
Liz — Precious Face Serum
Our Precious Face Serum is food for the skin, nourishing for all skin types. I bought some for my mom and it is her new favorite moisturizer!

Lelia — Mini Facial Delight Gift Bag
This sampling of our two face masks and incredible face serum is a great way to treat mom. As a bonus it is packaged in a sweet little gift bag with fragrant herbs, so it's ready for gift giving.

Rebecca — Gift Basket
When you just can't narrow it down to one thing, our gift baskets are a great blend of goodies sure to make any mom smile.

Breathe Essential Oil Blend
A wonderful combination of Rosemary, Peppermint, Eucalyptus, Lavender, and Basil essential oils. This dispersing blend of antimicrobial essential oils is useful in cases of congestion, cough, sinus issues, and even headaches. It is wonderful to inhale straight from the bottle, sprayed as a spritzer, diffused through your household, or used in a humidifier or steam.

We have a few wonderful limited quantity products we would like to bring to your attention:
Violet Honey
A magical remedy using local honey and nine sweet little violet flowers, hand harvested and prepared with love. For more information on violets, be sure to read about it in our Herb of the Month section below!

Black Copal Resin
This is a very special, limited supply item, sent specifically for our shop and community from Miss Beatrice, a traditional Maya healer and midwife from Belize. This Black Copal was hand harvested with prayer and intention and is used to clear a space or energy. Please remember to always leave a door or window cracked open when burning herbs for clearing.

Come check out our 20% off book table. If you have been looking for new herb books this is the perfect opportunity!

We are offering 10% off our Herb of the Month tincture, Wish Garden Violet Glycerite.

Staff Picks

Myrtle Essential Oil
By Lelia Lyon

We have a small quantity of Myrtle essential oil to offer! Organically grown in France, this essential oil is specific for the respiratory tract, soothing spasmodic coughs, opening airways and helping against infection. Myrtle was the main ingredient in a sixteenth-century complexion tonic called "Angels Water". It is useful for oily skin, acne, congested pores and enlarged surface veins. Myrtle has a complex smell that is slightly spicy, a little camphourous and green.

To Use: Myrtle can be used as a steam inhalant by putting a few drops in a bowl of steaming water and inhaling. It can also be made into massage oil by diluting 6 to 12 drops per ounce of carrier oil (Jojoba is our favorite for skin health).

Source: Aromatherapy: A Complete Guide to the Healing Art by Kathi Keville and Mindy Green*

Below is our Spring Class Schedule. Look for more seasonal classes to come. For full class descriptions and an archive of past classes please check our website at:

2nd Sunday of each month, April-June 2010, 10:00-11:00am
Instructor: Katie Browning, Certified Herbalist
Cost: $20 (All materials included)

Tuesday, May 11th 2009, 6:30-8:00pm
Instructor: Lelia Lyon, Certified Herbalist
Cost: $35

Sunday, May 16th, 10:00-12:00pm
Instructors: Ashlee Bodo, Certified Clinical Herbalist and Katie Browning, Certified Herbalist
Cost: $25

Introduction: Wednesday, May 19th, 6:30-8:30pm
Advanced: Wednesday, May 26th, 6:30-8:30pm
Instructor: Faith Goguen, Certified Clinical Herbalist
Cost: Individuals - $50.00 for both classes, Couples - $75.00 for both classes

Wednesday, June 9th, 6:30-8:00pm
Instructor, Faith Goguen, Certified Clinical Herbalist
Cost: $25, checks payable to Faith Goguen

Tuesday, June 15th, 6:30-8:00pm
Instructor: Lelia Lyon, Certified Herbalist
Cost: $35, checks payable to Lelia Lyon

Each month one of our staff members picks an herb that she/he is drawn to, and shares some experiences, thoughts, medicinal uses and a bit of traditional lore about their selected plant. As each plant is unique, each Herbalist and point of view is unique. We hope you enjoy this tradition.

Herb of the Month — May
By Rebecca Luna

Common Name

Latin Name
Viola odorata


Parts Used
Leaf and flower

Violet carries a loving energy. I was recently pondering the violet and thought, "it's like a kiss from the earth". I try to hold on to some of their goodness by putting the fresh blossoms into honey or oil. True joy comes from eating a violet flower fresh or handing it to someone else to try. It's like tasting the color purple and sharing it with a friend.

I consider violet medicine to be a medicine of hugs. A deeply supportive plant, it's the one I probably use most on an energetic level. For me, a violet blossom steeped in honey is the medicine I want when someone has experienced deep grief. I'll make that person a cup of tea and add a teaspoon of honey containing one violet blossom. This is a gift of flower love, when words won't due justice to what you want to convey.

It is not just the flowers of the violet that hold the medicine. Violet leaves have been used throughout the centuries as a soothing, cooling, anti-inflammatory demulcent. They can be a very effective first aid remedy for hot, inflamed conditions of the skin. Simply chew up a fresh leaf and place it on the effected area. A remedy gentle enough for use with children, violet can also be used to soothe hot irritating coughs or headaches. At the time of this writing I am enjoying a cup of fresh violet leaf tea. It is lovely and has a soft green taste.

Violet seems to have a particular affinity for the breasts and lungs. It has long been used to shrink tumors and swellings. In Susan Weed's book Breast Cancer? Breast Health!, she recommends violet leaf poultices and drinking violet leaf infusion to shrink lumps in the breast. Hildegard of Bingen, a 12th century prophet, renowned for her herbal knowledge among many other things, wrote of dissolving lumps and cysts with a salve of violet. When I found a lump in my breast, I went to the doctor. I got it checked out, had a mammogram and am following up. In addition, I am embracing the violet. For me it is a preventative and a supportive. However, we cannot stress enough that the first action that should be taken when a lump is discovered is to contact your health care practitioner to see what is appropriate for you.

Fresh is where it's at with violet. Maybe through this, violet is teaching us to seize the moment. Because of this, we do not carry the dried flowers or herb. We do have fresh violet flower honey, violet flower infused olive oil, and a violet glycerite from Wishgarden Herbs.

This is a very special little plant that is currently blooming all over Boulder. I hope you get a chance to meet this lovely little being and to enjoy it as much as I do.

Eat a fresh flower.
Fresh poultice — Just chew up the leaves and place them on the affected area.
Tea — Steep fresh violet leaves in hot water anywhere from 15 minutes to 4 hours.
Honey — Place the fresh blossoms in local honey and enjoy as needed.
Oil — Place the fresh blossoms in organic olive oil. Let them steep covered with cheese cloth for 2 weeks, checking in on it and stirring it each day. After 2 weeks strain out the blossoms and store the oil in a clean dark jar.

Breast Cancer? Breast Health!, Susan Weed*
Hildegard of Bingen's Medicine, Dr. Wighard Strehlow & Gottfried Hertzka, MD*
Flower Power, Anne McIntyre

*These are wonderful texts which we carry for sale at Rebecca's


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