Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Autumn Equinox

I have suddenly realized that I love to talk, and I also love to write, and just as suddenly it occurred to me that I have lots to say - particularly about Menopause.  How appropriate during this "Menopause Awareness Month" that I would finally have this realization.  I have been "blocked" at blogging  I know this is the best tool I have for sharing - this new way of thinking has really opened me up.  I will start blogging more - maybe every week day. Often...anyway.
It does not have to be so scary.  Promise!!!

I have been at this business of MoonMaid Botanicals some 20 years now.  Amazing to consider to me.  My work has brought me in touch with hundreds, maybe thousands of women who are all experiencing some sort of "discomfort" related to menopause.  As the years have gone on, I have heard from and worked with more and more younger women experiencing "discomfort" which seems related to hormone imbalance, hence PMS, infertility, fibroids and cysts.  In the last few years I have been working with more and more men who are experiencing what seems to be "feminization" of sorts, as they are growing breasts and experiencing breast lumps and cancer.  Throughout all of this, I have noted that the obesity epidemic, to me, seems somehow directly connected to hormone imbalance.  Don't many of our young people look like they have "middle age spread?"

I connect many of the "chemicals" that we should avoid, that are making us sick, to hormone imbalance.  Many of those chemicals, for instance, are "estrogenic" upon entering the human body.  These are called "xeno-estrogens."  They are everywhere in our world, not matter how clean and pristine your life.  It certainly helps to be choosy, careful about what you use, what you eat, what you drink.  The mere fact that growth hormones in our meat, pesticides on our fruits and vegetables, gas fumes, drug residue in water from urine (both human and animal), and off gassing of plastics are ALL estrogenic substances in the human body, gives one pause.  So many toxins, and not just any toxin, estrogen, chemical estrogen.  If these estrogens are making women "sick" with menopause etc........what are they doing to men, children, pets?  A little daunting to think about.

I did a show with Big Blend Radio on Sunday, and we talked about plastics.  This crazy mother and daughter team of Lisa and Nancy have me on monthly and we always find something to "go on" about. Listen to the show.  We chatted about two things related to plastic, the movie Plastic Paradise that exposes so much about plastic.  You must see it.  Info here  We also chatted about an innovative guy who made an island out of plastic bottles and lives on it in the Gulf of Mexico.  Check him out here.  Pretty amazing.  We also talked about wild yam, and how it is a main ingredient in my products ProMeno Women's Wild Yam Cream and Vital "V" Wild Yam Salve.  These are my products for menopause.  They have helped a lot of you gals!!

                                                                                                          
   



Oh, and nettles.  My other best remedy for your menopausal symptoms.  Find instructions here.

Joe Cross of the movie Fat Sick and Nearly Dead offered some great advice about eating healthy in this short video I came across.  I think you will find it inspiring.  20 minutes or so.  Enjoy here

Autumn Equinox
And I did have a lovely fire last evening for the Equinox.  It was lovely and warm.  First chilly night and was well appreciated.
Enjoy your evening.  I'll be back here soon.
Cynthia @ MoonMaid Botanicals





Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Menopause Awareness Month

September, as I mentioned previously, is Menopause Awareness month.  I find that I am aware.  It seems I am, at last,  menopausal.  I don't have many symptoms really - why would I - I make something for that!!! Right?  What I really do notice, is the lack of my monthly flow.  I never found it problematic.  It was a monthly "ritual" that I had come to appreciate, not dread.   I loved my monthly "red."  I am also aware that I have been on this land for 11 years now.  11 Years!!!  Wow.
Cabin in the Woods
I am so grateful that I found herbs as a "lifestyle" long ago, long before I realized that so many women would depend on an herbal remedy through the transition called Menopause.  Little did I know I would be the one to create an herbal alternative.  Wild Yam and Vitex are strong allies for me, that is for sure.

Not only do I use them in my products, I have them growing all around me.  Vitex or Chaste Berry in my garden beds.  Wild yam grows itself in the woodland gardens throughout the property.  I am blessed to be here as I enter the Winter of my life.  I am blessed to have so many green guardians surrounding me.   As they protect me, it is my intention to protect them as well as encouraging their growth.  This botanical sanctuary in the Smoky Mountains is rich with medicinels that include endangered species.  It is my intention to cultivate ginseng, wild yam, and goldenseal in the natural woodland beds.

Wild Yam
I have been noticing lots of reds...not quite Fall colors - the "fruits" of things seem to be red, in many cases.   I have been thinking about red.  Missing the red of my menstrual flow.  Honoring the "me" that is now a fully menopausal woman, missing the "red" in her life.


MoonMaid has been around for 20 years.  Imagine that!!  More on that in another blog post.  Enjoy that big full moon out there.  It's a beauty.
Cynthia @ MoonMaid Botanicals

Monday, September 1, 2014

September is "Menopause Awareness Month"

And aware we should be.  Not in the way most women are, however.  As I have been saying for years, menopause is a life transition to be embraced, not an "illness to be loathed and feared."

Throughout the month I plan to dig deep into my files and resources and bring tips related to menopause.  Herbs, symptoms, recommendations, procedures and any other tidbits I can find to share.
Wild Yam @ the Botanical Sanctuary
One of my favorites, of course, is wild yam (Dioscorea villosa), the main ingredient in ProMeno Women's Wild Yam Cream, Vital "V" Wild Yam Salve, and ProAndro Men's Wild Yam Cream.  These are my herbal alternatives to bio-identical hormone products.  



Here is a link to an article I wrote when I first started MoonMaid Botanicals called Menopause Herbally.  I discuss a bit about the how and why of MoonMaid. It was the horror of Premarin that inspired the first seed.  From there my desire grew to help women transition through menopause without drugs or surgery.   I trust you will find it informative.

On September on my podcast "Women of A Certain Age and...." I will host Dr. Tirso del Junco, Jr. of the IFAS, The Institute For Female Alternative Surgery.  This doctor has a strong belief that hysterectomy is performed far too often and feels as passionatly as I do that it is extremely to keep your uterus whenever possible.  I hope you will listen to this extremely valuable information
Mark your calenders for Monday, September 15 @ 7 PM EDT


Thursday, August 21, 2014

What means what????




Hash tags....              @ tags.........     Where and when??  On Twitter..sure.  But what about Facebook where I see #tags all the time.  Instagram is all about #tags......I think I know. But I am not sure...........What about in the body of a Blog.  It is very confusing sometimes....


My readers are the brilliant ones....perhaps you can enlighten this confused #herbalist.


Until next time - Cynthia @ MoonMaid

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

August @ MoonMaid Botanicals

August is here - it is half way gone isn't it?  I cannot believe how fast this summer is passing.  It has been a cool summer here in the Smokies.  I have had a birthday.  I started baking cakes for my friends......I have been exploring new activities, new hikes, AND I am doing a women's weekend campout with my friend Vesna of A Walk In the Woods in mid September @ Cosby Campground here in the Smoky Mountains.  Details here. There is always so much going on round here.  Zip lines, hiking,  biking, horseback riding and  Dollywood of course.  What I love most, are my gardens.  So much is blooming - Jewelweed and Ginseng are the most colorful now.


The nettles have been particularly abundant.  I have been harvesting and drinking them daily.  A nettle infusion, which is a strongly brewed tea, is a wonderful source of minerals, great for the skin, and is refreshing when enjoyed chilled.


I have found a most interesting guest for my September podcast - Women of A Certain Age and.......Hysterectomies.  Do you really need one?   It's a hot topic around MoonMaid.  I talk to women daily who have had one, are facing one, or have "conditions" that suggest one, by most medical docs. Dr. Tirso del Junco of www.alternativesurgery.com  offers a procedure that keeps the uterus intact.  I have said for years that a woman should try to keep their organs when possible.  It holds a lot of other organs in place.  Many women suffer severe physical issues after a hysterectomy.  I am looking forward to this conversation with Dr. del Junco.   Listen here.

I've also  been enjoying adding photos to Instagram.  A great way to post pictures of the garden.



Got a new kitty too.  They just show up around here.  She loves the garden already.

Next month we will be giving out sample sizes of our BugOff Insect Repellent.  It works great, it smells great.  I think you will like it.  Sign up for the monthly newsletter to find out how it works.

Back to the garden, an abundant reminder of how wonderful life is!!     


Tuesday, July 29, 2014

A cool July -

It has been amazingly cool around the Smoky Mountains this summer.  It is not that there have not been hot days.  There just have not been many.  Or, hey have been interspersed with cool days.  It is only 58 here this evening.  I have on a light coat - in July.  Weird.  But, so it is.  The gardens have loved it.  Grass has grown slowly.  There has been a splendid array of color.
The goldenseal and ginseng are showing berries.  Bright red on the goldenseal - still green on the ginseng.  I await the "turning" of color so I can spread the red berries around the hillside.  This year on the land I have counted over 50 ginseng plants.  I love this plant.  It is magical.
This gourd plant appeared at the office garden.  Planted by birds I imagine.
It is getting so big it may need it own parking space.  It makes me smile.  I love the feel of these gourds.  Smooth and bumpy.  And such cool colors.

As July turns to August I begin my birthday month.  Anyone who knows me knows that I celebrate "me" the entire month.  That means I take care of myself.  Get my teeth cleaned, get a facial, or a massage.  Meet friends for lunch.  And go somewhere I have not visited in my 11 years here in the Smoky Mountains.  And there are many places.  I have been busy "setting up camp" so to speak these years and not appreciated the wonder of the surroundings all around me.  I have begun the exploring.  This year Cades Cove.

MoonMaid is now on Instagram.  I take pictures constantly and it encourages me to share them more then I had previously.  It is easy and I am enjoying this format.

I got early drawings of the CottageClassroom building from my friend Corvus.  It is exciting to be in the planning stages of this new structure that will serve as classroom, guest cottage, and office.
I hope to be started with deconstrution of an existing building by late fall.  It won't be done in time for the Gals Glampout, but it will be in progress.  GlampOut you say.  What's that?  Fancy camping here @ the Botanical Sanctuary, which has officially been named MoonMaid's Botanical Sanctuary - Preserving, Protecting, and Propagating Native Medicinal Species.  It has taken a long while to find something that just rolls off the tongue.  I think this does.  Back to the GlampOut, You can find more information here.    We will provide you with all the gear and food you need to enjoy a night or two here with me and learn about this living breathing classroom.  There is info about other classes as well.  I am also excited to be the herbalist for a Women in Wilderness Weekend with my friend Vesna Plakanis of A Walk in the Woods.

I hope you will sign up for my newsletter.  I have a monthly special that is always worth taking advantage of.  A free product, free shipping, or who knows.  This month it has been 20% off all wild yam products and free shipping.  You still have a few days to take advantage of that.  The discount is automatically given @ checkout.  I will never share your information nor will I bombard you with emails.  Just one email at the beginning of the month and a reminder 1/2 way through.  I think you will appreciate the specials.

That's the news for this week.  I it is a good one for you.  Cynthia @ MoonMaid Botanicals

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

The Art of Simpling - a DIY Manual to create you own herbal goodies is now available

Sign up for MoonMaid's monthly newsletter and receive this Ebook The Art of Simpling - a DIY Manuel of Herbal Goodies for Free!!

We offer it for $9.99 on our website. Now can get it now just for signing up.  It is a great little tutorial that will coach you through how to make herbal goodies of many kinds.  Everything from a room spritzer to an herbal cream.  It is fun and easy.  I have been wanting to offer this for years and now I am.   

The newsletter is a once monthly email detailing our monthly specials.  A free product, a sample of something new, free shipping or who knows.....   In July we are offering 20% off all wild yam products and free shipping!  Join the list here and take advantage of the offers.