Infusions :: a winters past time.

This time of year, winter that is, is when I like to access and work on my pantry. This includes everything from eating to the last package in the freezer, to assessing the food storage and home apothecary. Making garden plans, family plans and bulk herb & essential oil preparations...

Like these herb infused oils for the upcoming salve making season.

Making the Herb Infused Oils:
  • This method {pictured above} was done by simply packing my mason jar semi tightly with the herbs... in this case one jar was calendula and two jars were plantain. I prefer using dried herbs as I seem to have trouble with my oil becoming rancid when my herbs are not completely dry.
  • Then I cover my herbs with high a quality olive oil, cover with a lid, label with name and date and sit them in the window sill. This works the best for me during sunny, warm fall days...
  • Shake the jars every day, and monitor for concerns... like slime. Do this for about six to eight weeks. 
  • After the infusion time has taken place, strain the herbs from your oil and place the oil in a clean mason jar, again be sure to label with name and date. Trust me... always label and date.
  • Store in semi cool dark place until ready for use... I prefer to turn around my oils quickly with salves and things because I don't want to waste my efforts on rancidity. 

Other Infused Methods:
  • You could also infuse your oils in a crock pot, on the stove or in the oven. I have done the crock pot method and liked it, but I have not tried the other methods... either way, find a method that works for you and enjoy it.

Now that the snow drifts are piled higher, and the winds are blowing cold... I really enjoy creating with my herbal oils... it's like opening a jar of Yah's promise of the harvest.

"While the earth remains, seed time and harvest, cold and heat, winter and summer, and day and night shall not cease."
~ Genesis 8:22 ~

~ Blessings!

Definitions to Know: Carrier Oil ~ refers to an oil or wax that an essential oil is mixed with. The carrier oil 'delivers' the essential oil and offers dilution so the effects of the essential oil can be spread over a larger area when applied.

Intro to Rigid Heddle Weaving

Three weeks ago we entered into a wonderful learning adventure, one that could prove useful as a home industry idea, a hobby or even a ministry. It's Rigid Heddle Weaving! My daughter has had a past interest in weaving, and even has built her own rough loom to weave on, so when this opportunity arose... Abba provided and we jumped.

The first four hours of our class were spent learning the different types of looms, the parts of the loom, what the warp and weft threads were and the importance of having fibers that worked together. Our project was predetermined for us, as was our base - the warp - fiber.

We were going to make hand woven scarves. :)

Seriously, my head hurt, but it was a wonderful learning experience and I am still trying to keep the terminology straight in my head. Below is a photo I took of the heddle, showing the teeth, or slots, the dents. And the number of dents per inch determines the feel of the cloth... fine or bulky.

We both worked on a Cricket, which was a great little loom for beginners and it offers some great diversity for it's size...

 Our instructor also taught us how to warp out a project using a warping board, and because I am so very new at this, um... no thank you. But it was interesting... and I am sure like all new things, once you get use to it, it would not seem like such a challenge.

According to our instructor the opportunities are almost endless in weaving and the warping board is a great tool...

So here is a shot of my daughters scarf at the beginning... she has a nice balanced weave here, which basically means that her weft and warp threads are equally visible.

She is using a Noro fiber here, and the colors are amazing!

So the final project results for both of us:

Daughters after being fulled, which is the technical term for what I knew as felting. 

Mine before fulling...

"You shall make a screen for the door of the Tabernacle, woven of blue, and purple, and scarlet thread and fine woven linen, made by a weaver." ~ Exodus 26:36

 I don't know if it's something I will continue doing, however I absolutely love the way the scarves turned out, so unique and different. Both of them were woven from one hundred percent wool fibers and both have been a welcomed joy in this recent snap of extreme cold weather.

~ Blessings!

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