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To use or not to use… Beeswax, is it ethical? Why I’ve chosen to use it

To use or not to use?  Is something that I had asked myself, when I started on this journey. Knowing my use of beeswax would be questioned, and vegans would not buy my Wayfarer’s Magic and Sadhu Rose Comfrey Ointments.

Wayfarers Magic: Comfrey Ointment + Ethical Beeswax

Wayfarers Magic: Comfrey Ointment + Ethical Beeswax

For a start, I don’t eat unethical animal products or support the treatment and misuse of animals for our consumption, production or testing.  So how, do then carry my values over into my products and business?

To answer this, I set about researching the question, is beeswax ethical? And should I be using it?

I came to the decision to use Beeswax, and here’s why;

1. Ethical Beeswax does exist;

I get my beeswax from a local beekeeper – it’s a beekeeping family, their native bees and are wild and are free here in central coast wilderness of New South Wales. It’s an excess bi-product of the honey that is ethically sourced; meaning there is always more than enough for the bees. Unlike in hives that are in mass production, and they are not tricked of forced to produce honey/ wax in excess.  Happy bees = Happy Honey = Ethical Beeswax.

2. Beeswax is also healing

Beeswax itself it uber beneficial to the skin and the healing process. It’s anti-inflammatory, antiviral and anti-bacterial. Due to this, it contributes to the healing quality of the ointments. It soothes and softens the skin, and forms a protective layer that still allows the skin to breathe and heal.  It is also a ‘natural’ product, that has not undergone industry processing.

Bees Natural Green Home turf

Since I’ve moved to the Central Coast I’ve also been using the wax from the same local beekeeping family that I get my honey from Suesse Honey‘. If you are ever at the Entrance market be sure to buy some of their honey! Their  ‘Raw honey Lemon, Ginger and Cinnamon’ blend – which also has Lemon Myrtle – tastes as good as it is healthy – I am completely unshamedly addicted.

For those that aren’t aware, Raw honey is packing with nutrients, it contains; 22 amino acids, 27 minerals and 5,000 enzymes. Minerals include iron, zinc, potassium, calcium, phosphorous, magnesium and selenium. If you add to this the benefits of Ginger, Cinnamon, Lemon and Lemon Myrtle, you have a most delicious healthy treat.

I do empathise with the dilemma of using or not using animal products.

I remember the moment, that I learned the big-eyed gentle cow in the paddock could end up as a steak dinner. It’s the same moment I secretly vowed to never eat animals again.  As soon as I grew up and left home, that’s what I did and I’ve been a vegetarian ever since.

Though, I am not a vegan, and I do have a few pair of leather shoes and a jacket.  Which I often get flack for funnily enough from meat eaters.  However, as one wise friend once said, ‘is it more ethical to have a sturdy jacket that lasts you 50+years that is biodegradable, or a jacket that is made from synthetic material, that has gone through industry processing to be created and then never degrades and pollutes the environment?’

Tough questions, that we need to face and ask ourselves when we aim to live a conscious life.

While I abhor the way humankind treats the animals on the planet, and how they are treated as a commodity rather than a sentient being.  It’s good to see that research is now supporting what many of us already know, that insects have emotions and sentience, as do plants and trees.

I do believe that as Robin Wall Kimmer states so wisely in her @onbeing interview,  we should be aiming for a reciprocal relationship with the world around us.  I love that idea!  It takes sustainability to the next level.

Lavender Bees

Lavender Bees

If we work to look after bees and their environment, it becomes a collaboration with them. In taking this reciprocal approach, we can create a better world, for everything – plants, animals and humans. We just need to start asking, how can we contribute – what do we have to give?

When we are not doing this, which we can see reflected in much of the world around us right now, we are out of balance with the natural world around us.

I am thankful for my Ethical Healing Beeswax, from happy bees that share their wares with us. And I hope that we, in turn, can share and work to protect them and their environments and well-being.

We can do this, by asking ourselves how we can contribute to living in a ‘Reciprocal’ way with the world around us. Can this be reflected in our daily decisions  i.e. buying heritage seeds, not supporting/using monsanto products, doing bio-dynamic gardening, growing flowers and plants that bees love.

In doing so, we take conscious steps, to live in a conscious way –  in balance and harmony with the world around us.

I do have two vegan products:
Bedouin’s Charm: Comfrey+Coconut+Grapefruit Body/Bath Oil
Eternal Serenity: Comfrey+Hemp+Argan Face Oil

And the products that contain Organic/ Ethically sourced Beeswax:
Wayfarers Magic: Comfrey Ointment
Sadhu Rose: Rose+Comfrey Ointment

Note:
All my products and ingredients are Cruelty-free, and not tested on any animals (only myself, and consenting family and friends).

Further Reading:
The Secret Life of Plants: a Fascinating Account of the Physical, Emotional, and Spiritual Relations Between Plants and Man

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Wayfarers Magic: All Purpose Comfrey Ointment

Comfrey Plant

Comfrey Plant

So once upon a time, I was busy travelling around Australia, when I had the opportunity to spend some time on a Comfrey Farm on French Island.  And it was here that I learnt, saw and experienced first hand many of the benefits of comfrey. From being used in permaculture as a companion plant or fertiliser to brewing ointments that relieved me of my long-standing RSI (repetitive strain injury), insect bites, calluses and muscle strain (yes, farm work is hard).

I literally saw bruises, strains and muscles heal overnight and the more I read the research I realised how miraculous this plant was, and I was surprised at how little was known or published about it.

As I left the farm, I was enthralled and went on to study more herblore to better understand what else would relieve Arthritis, which my mother has, as well as keep my own RSI and varicose veins at bay.  In an all natural – ‘no need to see a doctor kind of way’.  I also researched the essential oils, as well as the properties of Cocoa and Shea Butter, all which make up the

As well as this I researched the essential oils, as well as the properties of Cocoa and Shea Butter, all which make up the Wayfarer’s Magic: Comfrey Ointment product that I have today.

Comfrey is much more than just a traveller’s talisman. Hence I’ve given the Wayfarer’s Magic: Comfrey Ointment the term ‘All-purpose’, this is largely thanks to my own testing of it on everything and anything that might come up.

I’ve relieved and helped heal my aching and tired Muscles, Insect bites, Burns, RSI, Varicose Vein and Trauma injuries. When I fell off my bike I raced (well ok, cried all the way home) covered the injuries with Comfrey and the next day I had no pain or swelling at all.   When I’d splashed boiling oil onto my wrist – I was dreading the blisters and scars it might leave as my skin turned a shocking red, I quickly

One day, I accidentally splashed boiling oil onto my wrist, I was dreading the blisters as I saw the skin starting to swell, and scars it might leave, I quickly slathered on the comfrey ointment, intermittently exchanging it with a cooling leaf of Aloe vera for half an hour – covered again it in comfrey, before applying a bandage and cooling pack. The next morning there was no sign I’d been burnt – not the slightest of marks.  This to me gives new meaning to the term ‘All Purpose’.

Wayfarers Magic: Comfrey Ointment

Wayfarers Magic: Comfrey Ointment

The biggest thrill for me  is seeing and hearing the stories from people who have bought and are using the ointment, telling me of their relief from Arthritis, Back pain, Fractures, Broken bones, Tennis elbow, RSI, Plantar Fasciitis. One lady uses it as a hand cream saying she loved it as it felt great and significantly reduced her age spots. Another told me that it’s provided relief from Psoriasis, (to heal psoriasis the diet and stress management also needs to be addressed), it can calm the pain, irritation and inflammation of the skin.

I also have to give each herb in the Wayfarer’s Magic: Comfrey Ointment some deep love and appreciation, while Comfrey is just magic; there are some other key players I’d also like to introduce you to, as my Comfrey Base blend also consists of:

  • Yarrow: The lovely herbs claim to fame was that Achilles reputedly used it to heal his wounds after battle, with the nickname of ‘nosebleed’, for you guessed it stopping nosebleeds.  No doubt thanks to it’s anti-inflammatory, antispasmodic and astringent properties.
  • Burdock: Is one of the most detoxifying herbs, and has both Antiseptic and antibiotic qualities. Particularly renowned for skin problems such as acne, eczema and psoriasis for it’s calming and detoxing effects. Also has been proven to reduce the signs of ageing as it also supports the cell rejuvenation.
  • Devils Claw: has been used to provide relief internally and externally for Gout, Arthritis both rheumatoid and Osteoarthritis as well as Swollen inflamed joints. And externally for Boils, Skin sores and Skin cancer.
  • Horsetail: Has incredibly high silica content it is also reputed to speed up the repair of damaged tissue and skin elasticity, providing relief and healing of arthritic problems, eczema, psoriasis, sprains and fractures.
  • Calendula:  Another amazing little herb that is a must in any herbal medicine cabinet. It is an ideal remedy for inflamed skin, and has soothing, healing and antiseptic properties. Traditionally used to speed up the healing of or sooth; cuts, scrapes inflamed skin, sunburn and minor burns.
  • Essential Oils that I’ve chosen (Frankincense, Juniper, Cedar wood, Rosemary, Bergamot, Clary Sageand Lavender) are all beneficial for the skin in that they protect, embalm, disinfect sooth, calm, moisturise and are both anti-spasmodic and anti inflammatory.
Comfrey Leaf

Comfrey leaf

Together this blend of organic herbs and healing local beeswax and organic Cocoa and Shea butter,  works to provide relief on all levels be it as a simple nourishing hand cream to speeding up the recover of a traumatic injury or irritated inflated skin or joints – it supports the bodies natural healing process.

I always suggest it best to apply a few times during the day, and especially at night before going to sleep. This is the 8 hours our body uses to heal itself and I believe these herbs work with our body while it’s sleeping to hasten the healing process.

Click here to learn more or try the Wayfarers Magic’: Comfrey Ointment, and use the discount code allpurpose when checking out for a 20% discount valid until the end of January 2017.

“I have been using the Comfrey Ointment for my Plantar Fasciitis for over 7 weeks now, together with the ice packs, stretches and massaging the ointment in both morning and night. My doctor told me it would be a long healing process that could take up to 2 years. I’ve had it since the beginning of October and now in mid-January all the pain, symptoms and discomforts have disappeared. I am normally very suspicious about this claims or testimonials, however this comfrey ointment has certainly worked miracles for me.”

ineke
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Top 5 ways to support Arthritis Naturally

Yes, it’s ironic, that I’d be writing about Natural Arthritis Prevention and management when my “Wayfarer’s Magic: Comfrey Ointment”, provides relief to Arthritis.

Yet,  I’d prefer to prevent Arthritis than manage the symptoms of it. Wouldn’t we all prefer a happy pain-free world for everyone at whatever age?

As Hippocrates, once said ‘Let food be thy medicine, and let medicine be thy food’, and there was never truer words spoken. And it’s these words that play in my mind as I continually educate myself on good health and well-being.

Friday Bingo

Friday Bingo

When I volunteered at an aged care home in Buenos Aires, I was in charge of Friday’s bingo and had the honour of meeting Betty* (* name has been changed to protect the not so innocent).  Betty had been married, must’ve and still was a stunner – she captured my imagination with the stories of the wild escapades of her youth.  Sure, skinny dipping in the river with a bunch of girlfriends might not be shocking now, it certainly was back in the 1930’s.

Betty had been married, must’ve and still was a stunner – she captured my imagination with the stories of the wild escapades of her youth.  Sure, skinny dipping in the river with a bunch of girlfriends might not be shocking now, it certainly was back in the 1930’s.

She was independent, strong and positive, the only thing that bothered her was her Rheumatoid Arthritis. She often spoke of her inability to hold a pen to write to her 3 grandchildren living in the USA, and wasn’t able to knit as she’d done all her life.

I wish I knew more about Arthritis then, and if she were still around this is the advice I’d be giving her:

Manage and Prevent Arthritis by following these simple steps:

  1. Keep hydrated, drink water – this is what keeps the fluid in our body well oiled, and rids our body of waste products that otherwise contribute to the Arthritic inflammation.
  2. TurmericEat beneficial spices such as Turmeric to your diet wherever you can, this earlier post explains how. Ginger also calms inflammations as does Cinnamon.
  3. Make sure you are getting your Omega 3-6-9, either through eating Fish, Flaxseed/ Olive Oil or Udo’s 3-6-9 Oil which is the best oil for all three Omegas.
  4. Eat enough veggies & Fruit: Preferably organic or home grown, especially berries for antioxidants, citrus fruit or kiwi for vitamin C, broccoli, dark green veggies as well as squash, carrots and apricots:
    • – Organic is preferred, as it is free of chemical pesticides, it also has more nutrients and minerals from the soil for our body so it can more readily renew our cellar tissue.
  5. Avoid Coffee, Alcohol, Smoking, food additives and Sugar-
    – These either stop the nutrients you need from being absorbed in your body, which you need for cell renewal, or they directly help to cause the inflammation.

Yes, I would also gift Betty a jar of my “Wayfarers Magic: Comfrey Ointment”, as an adventurous traveller I have no doubt she’d have loved the name and the opportunity to use it.

More than that, I’d have like to see her on a healthier diet that was able to manage/prevent the pain caused to her by Arthritis. If nothing else so she’d be able to write her grandchildren without needing to dictate her innermost thoughts and affections for them through another.

Highly recommend this book if you’d like to know more: The Autoimmune Fix

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Daily Herbal Habits #2 Lavender Oil

lavender-botanical-print-graphicsfairy-smYet another Herbal addiction/ or confession to make I can hardly think of going to sleep without dabbing some of this oil on my wrists.  It’s such magic – it’s relaxing and is one of those rituals that gives the day a perfect end, and that calming smell to the room before wafting off to sleep.

On top of this, Lavender Essential oil has a lot of benefits, you can use on cramped muscles as it’s anti-spasmodic, it a repellent for moths (which is why it can be found in most potpourri sachets for your wardrobe), it can be used to clean (the name comes from the Latin verb: Lavare, which means to clean), it calms the nerves, helps get rid of headaches, and even works as an anti-depressant.  There really isn’t much that it can’t do.

It’s history is rich and deep, used by the Romans, Arabs, Greeks and through the ages, it was noted by Pliny the Elder. Can you believe King Charles VI of France had his seat cushions stuffed with lavender. And in 16th century France lavender was regarded so good against infection thanks to it’s antiseptic and anti-fungal qualities that glove makers who were licensed to perfume their wares with lavender with the idea of escaping cholera.

 

So now you can see why I always keep some next my bed, with me when I am travelling… and use it in my products. It can be found in my Wayfarers Ointment, and my Eternal Serenity Face Oil.

You can find easily locally, I highly recommend getting from Health and Happiness, a lovely local Australia supplier.
If you live outside of Australia, best place is iHerb Here.

 

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Top ten things to bring on a Pilgrimage/ Hike

Long path

Almost there

Whether you are about to walk the Camino de Santiago, Appalachian Trail or do a local hike, you need to be prepared. And you know what it’s like, you’re
about to set off on the trip of a lifetime, and you have your must have list of what to take – there is the passport, ticket toothbrush – however there are always the hidden, last minute items that you are likely to forget and will wish you hadn’t, here’s my top #10 list:

  1. Good broken in pair of Shoes (be in hiking boots or hiking sandals – whatever works for you and that you’ve already walked in for hours or days without getting blisters)
  2. Walking stick – a good one, buy or find one on route as soon as
  3. A good Backpack, while this sounds like a given, trust me, some weigh a ton even when empty or if you get one too big you are likely to fill it, so it’s a fine balance to find the one for you.
  4. Water filter bottle (gentoo is my favourite  – filters it well enough to make tap water digestible almost anywhere, so you can refill on route. Boil water first in some countries, then cool and add to bottle, trick I used in Thailand where I drank only tap water)
  5. Real Woollen Thermals; nights and mornings can get cold and its must easier, smaller to take than jumpers, real wool will also wick sweat away from
    Backpacks

    Ready to go…

    your body or keep rain out.

  6. Rain poncho; it is likely to rain, somewhere, sometime, and somehow be prepared.
  7. Earplugs; not every night is a blissful one, so be prepared to pull out and use as needed.
  8. All purpose Ointment/ Salve; blisters, cuts, scrapes, bruises, aching muscles, dry lips – skin, are all but a few things that come up when you’re on the road all day, having something that works to deal with them is staple – I of course use my own Wayfarers Magic Comfrey Ointment.
  9. A few band-aids, you just never know.
  10.  A positive attitude and some self worth; it’s not a competition – you don’t need to be the fastest, best or fittest.  Enjoy, stop and smell the flowers, be present.
Comfrey ointment

Wayfarer’s Magic

And be sure to leave; your troubles, your worries and your every day life. Just writing this list makes me hit the road.  Anything I missed that you would add to my list???

Use the word Camino in the checkout process for a 10% discount – and if you do use it on your pilgrimage/ hike drop me a line and let me know how you get on –

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I am a wanderer, learning and growing as I go

“Wandering re-establishes the original harmony which once existed between man and the universe.” – Anatole France

Do you like to travel?  I think the world is such a magical place, that it’s one of our greatest privileges in this life to be able to explore it, and learn from all the incredible cultures and countries that we travel to.  Here are some of the things I learnt from a few of my adventures;

  1. Argentina:  that Whales are the Zen masters of the sea, and their song weaves such presence that you are immediately transported a new dimensions of wonder and being.
  2. Argentina: Yes the government is unstable, yes inflation is outrageous, yes crime is an issue – life is life, just get on with it, complaining will get you nowhere, laugh, enjoy, have fun, drink mate, stay up all night, dance the tango, create magic and know that today is today and tomorrow is a new day, with completely new opportunities.
  3. Thailand: truly a land of smiles, authentic ones at that! Did you know you can’t smile and be sad at the same time, so keep on smiling. And Thai food is the most delicious food ever (no doubt something to smile about).
  4. Laos:   Weaving and natural dying is long, hard yet happy work.  I will never look at the price of a hand dyed & woven fabric every again.
  5. Italy:  You can never have too much of a good thing…. Even if it’s ice cream
  6. France:  Life is to be enjoyed, don’t bother at all about what anyone thinks and it’s your right, and anyone else to strike – as long as you need to. Viva la revolution!
  7. England:  A good sense of humour is needed and found in all situations.
  8. Every where: Hotel toiletries are always below par, so I always have my own must have items, nowadays this also includes my own Wayfarers Magic Wayfarers Magic
    Comfrey Ointment, which is super all-purpose, I use mine as a day/ night cream, bumps, bruises, insect bites, cuts and hand cream. And in any other unforeseen emergencies.  Ancient Pilgrims knew to have a bit of Comfrey at hand.

Anything you’ve learnt? And love about travelling, or have a must have that you take with you?