I have been eagerly awaiting the first signs of nature reawakening from its winter's slumber, and was happy to discover new buds on my lilac bush today. The equinox has passed, daytime has won over winter's night, and Spring is finally here!
I purposefully try to keep attuned to the rhythms of nature as an act of mindfulness so I am present to discover all the small joys of this life. A bud on a lilac tree signals to me that our (unusually grey) winter is over, and I feel relief. I am now happily anticipating lilac blooms and their beautiful fragrance. And that thought brings forth a memory of a tree swing at my grandmother's that carried me up and back past her fragrant lilac bushes, and I feel contentment. Before heading back to the warmth inside the house, I stood there for a moment, my feet in the snow and my face turned towards the sun. I savored the warm touch of the sun, listened to the birds chirping, and took a slow, deep, cleansing breath. Serenity in with the inhale. Anxiety out with the exhale. These are little tools I sharpened when I had cancer - to be mindful of the life around me, to find such little moments of joy, and to nurture a deep connection with nature. These tools helped me cope, and although I'm now cancer-free, life is still stressful and I still find them useful. Perhaps you will too
I've been a tree hugger my entire life - long before I had cancer. It is the reason I started Jezebel Soaps - to produce earth-friendly alternatives to chemical-laden soaps & self-care products. I make my products using only natural, botanical ingredients. For fragrances, I use distilled flowers and plants, pressed fruit peels, and tree resins. For colourants, I use powdered clays and plant, seed, and root extracts. And with Spring having arrived and Easter on its way, I thought I'd share with you some of my knowledge of natural dyes in hopes you might try coloring your eggs using ingredients found in your fridge or pantry. If so, here's what you'll need:
For purple eggs: use 1.5 cups of shredded beets
For Blue eggs: use 1.5 cups of shredded red cabbage
For yellow eggs: use 3 tablespoons of turmeric
For orange eggs: use 3 tablespoons of chili
Try mixing solutions to create new colours.
Bring 2 cups of water to a boil
Add colouring agent and simmer for 30 minutes
Strain into jars or bowls
Stir in 2 tablespoons of white vinegar
Add hard-boiled eggs and allow to soak until desired coloured (1 - 3 hours)
Yes, that's hours - not minutes. Natural dyes do take longer and the longer you leave them in, the darker the colour will become. But just think of the growing anticipation as you wait, and the satisfaction when they finally reach your desired colour! If you give natural dyes a try this Easter, I'd love for you to share your experience in the comments below.