Well, it was a nice 3 1/2 year experiment but we decided it was time for the city chickens to fly the coop. When the girls are not laying eggs anymore, they kinda become a liability. We were buying food and vegetables for them and still had to run down the grocery store and pay $3.00 for a dozen of organic eggs. Most people rotate their chickens every year, allowing the younger chickens to take over the egg laying duties and most of the time the older ones go to the great deep freezer in the sky.
But, it’s pretty difficult to eat a feathery little pet that you have named! So, we found a chicken farmer in a nearby town who took the chickens, the coop and the henhouse. The girls could be running around his yard right now. On the other hand, they might be curled up to some mashed potatoes and peas. The only thing I know for sure is that we weren’t ready to be the ones that sent them to the dinner table.
But, the spot where the coop was should make a great garden next year!
before doing a little grocery shopping at The Turnip Truck in the Gulch, we had breakfast from their food bar. Instead of my normal eggs and bacon, I chose the tofu scramble (color courtesty of curry), SOYsage (instead of sausage), roasted potatoes with onions and peppers – but, couldn’t resist having one of those parmesan cheese biscuits. The amazing thing? It was just as flavorful and savory as bacon and eggs.
After watching many youtube videos on the subject and reading some articles, I decided to attempt to make hydrosols this weekend. This is one of the articles and used very similar equipment that I did. How to Make an Essential Oil Distiller from Kitchen Equipment.
Hydrosols are usually the byproduct of steam distilling essential oils, the hydrosol being the steam water that contains some of the plant properties. Hydrosol shouldn’t be confused with the water that the plant has been steeped in, which is really more of a very strong tisane. Wikipedia describes hydrosols as:
Herbal distillates are aqueous solutions or colloidal suspensions (hydrosol) of essential oils usually obtained by steam distillation from aromatic plants. These herbal distillates have uses as flavorings, medicine and in skin care. Herbal distillates are produced in the same manner as essential oils. However, the essential oil will float to the top of the distillate where it is removed, leaving behind the watery distillate. For this reason perhaps the term essential water is more descript. In the past, these essential waters were considered a byproduct of distillation, but now are considered an important co-product.
The basic concept is that as the plant matter heats and the steam rises, you want to be able to catch that plant infused steam somehow. By placing a bowl in the steam basket of my vegetable steamer, the bowl worked as a vessel to collect the droplets. The lid I used was not the one that came with the steamer (because it had a plastic handle) but a glass lid (like a crockpot lid) with a knob handle on top. The lid is placed over the steamer upside-down with the knob facing down into the steam pot right over my collecting bowl.
As the steam rose and hit the glass lid, droplets ran down to the knob handle then dropped into the bowl. As directed, I did placed bags of ice of top of the lid to help with condensation but with the equipment I was using it didn’t seem that necessary, probably because it was not a deep pot and the steam didn’t have to travel that far.
The first batch I made was from a big handful of Spanish Lavender cuttings. At the time I cut them, the lavender was so sticky with essential oil that some of the purple buds were sticking to my hands — it felt like honey. I know – HOW did I get a handful of lavender this time of year? Here in Nashville, March brought us a surge of hot weather that felt like June (when lavender usually blooms) and brought out many flowering plants ahead of time.
I brought the water close to a boil then immediately turned it down just below simmer and let it do its work for approximately 3 hours. The lavender produced enough hydrosol to fill an 8 ounce jar half-way. The next day when I repeated the process with rosemary, it seemed to yield about an ounce less than the lavender.
Now I have to decide whether I want to refrigerate the hydrosols or add about 20% alchohol (vodka or everclear) to keep them.
People have been debating about this topic for years – whether or not to charge for services such as reiki, healing touch therapy, psychic readings, etc. Forget debate, some people downright argue about it – passionately and loudly.
A Sense of Balance
Those who feel you should not charge usually say, “I would never charge someone for a sacred gift that was given to me. It is my duty to give it away!” This may be true for some people and I often wonder if they have some cosmic debt to repay. Other times, those who do not charge EVENTUALLY charge once they build up enough confidence in their services. In the beginning, some practitioners feel unworthy of receiving a fee.
I am of the other variety – the group that does charge for sessions. And I will tell you why I find it to be necessary.
Energetically, there is something going on with a take-only relationship. The receiver is beholden to the giver, cosmically speaking. While we don’t only do things with an expectation of something in return, neither should we expect to constantly give all of the time or receive all of the time without ever returning the favor. There must be some sort of energetic balance. In the long run, A healing session has more power behind it when the person receiving it doesn’t feel like they had been done a “favor”, something they must one day repay. Payment, whether it be in the form of currency or agreed upon bartering means that no favor ever has to be returned. Everyone is even.
Value and Intention
Everything in life has some sort of value attached to it and, many times, a level of sacrifice. Especially in America, people tend to feel a service has more value when it actually costs them something. But it goes beyond that. The power of intention is beneath the surface. When a client receives a service for free, they usually do not place as much value on it. Since they weren’t required to give up anything to receive it (sacrifice of currency) the worth is perceived to be low, which lowers the client’s belief in the process. That belief, that intention for healing to begin to take place can play just as important of a role as the energy work that is being performed by the practitioner.
Here, let’s talk about the reality of the situation for a moment. If I did not charge for sessions and readings, I wouldn’t have the time to book and perform them — I’d be trapped in some 9 to 5 job somewhere and when you call for an appointment I would have to say, “sorry, I’m at work all week. I don’t have time to see you.”
What You Wish for Your Practitioner
Because whether you are a psychic reader, a reiki healer, a construction worker or a school teacher – we all have the same things we have to buy: food, clothing, electricity, insurance, shampoo. And sometimes the little things that keep us sane like: seeds for plants, a new pillow for the couch or even the lastest novel by your favorite author. Do the people that come to see me wish me to live in poverty? I don’t think that is the case. I also don’t believe my clients want me to eat one meal a day (or less) because it made me feel “noble” to perform free sessions. I don’t wish that on any of my friends or clients – I sure hope they don’t envision such a life for me.
In other words, I don’t believe any of my clients desire me to be hungry or in debt. I am most definitely sure clients would not appreciate a lack of heat or air in the studio because we couldn’t afford to pay the electric bill.
We pay the flowers in water, they give back beauty and fragrance. Give and take.
Everything has SOME sort of give and take arrangement. This keeps the energy evenly balanced. Neither party is beholden to the other at the end of a session or reading. The client received a relaxing session and I was able to not only help someone but was able to later go and buy vegetables, toothpaste, and gasoline that week. It is really that simple.