Things I Love: January 2016

Things I Love: January 2016 | Growing Up Herbal | Here are 5 things I've loved in January 2016!


January has been a cold and blustery month here in East Tennessee. 

Today I’m sharing 5 of my favorite things from this past month. I hope you enjoy seeing what I’ve been into lately.

I’d love to hear your thoughts or experiences on any of the things I share today, and of course, be sure to share your favorite thing from January with me in the comment section of this post!

Favorite Book

Things I Love: January | Growing Up Herbal | Here are 5 things I've loved in January 2015!

With all the snow we’ve had, I’ve had some extra time to do some reading.

My brother-in-law is a phycologist (yes, he was homeschooled), and one of his co-workers gave him this book saying it was her favorite book when it came to raising her 3 boys. Since he only has a daughter, he passed it on to me. 

I’m 3 chapters in at this point, and I’m really enjoying what I’ve read so far. In fact, I’m learning a lot about how to address the emotional needs of my boys. 

Favorite Handmade Product

Things I Love: January | Growing Up Herbal | Here are 5 things I've loved in January 2015!

This was a fun find I bought for my man a while back, but he’s been wearing it a bit more lately. It’s an all-natural aftershave for men from the Etsy shop Whiskey, Ink & Lace. (If you order something from her, tell her Meagan from Growing Up Herbal sent you!)

This particular aftershave is called the adventurer, and it’s a mix of sandalwood + black pepper + licorice that blends together to create a clean, manly smell. Since he has a beard at the moment (he always grows one during the winter thanks to hunting season), he mainly uses it when he shaves his neck. Anyway, it must work well because he’s consistent with using it.

Favorite Personal Care Product

Things I Love: January | Growing Up Herbal | Here are 5 things I've loved in January 2015!

I like makeup. What can I say? I’m not one of those natural mamas that wants to go without makeup. I wish I were, but I’m just not.

Anyway, I recently bought some new makeup brushes (from EcoTools) for my mineral makeup, and I’m loving them. They’re small, they provide great coverage, and they’re quick to dry after being cleaned. The concealer brush is definitely my favorite! 

Favorite Herbal Product

Things I Love: January | Growing Up Herbal | Here are 5 things I've loved in January 2015!

I love settling down with one herb and really learning about it, and this month, my herb has been usnea.

Not only did I learn how to identify and locate it in the woods where we live, but I was able to sustainably harvest it, properly prepare it, and use it for my kiddos during a seemingly neverending cough they all recently had.

This herb is definitely a keeper, especially for kids or those that have weak respiratory systems. I’ll be writing a detailed post on my experiences with this amazing plant and all about how to use it in the May/June issue of The Essential Herbal. Be on the lookout, mama!

Favorite Experience

Things I Love: January | Growing Up Herbal | Here are 5 things I've loved in January 2015!

Winter is finally here in the Tennessee mountains!

We were hit by the most recent winter storm and were snowed in on the mountain for a bit. Being snowed in on top of a mountain with four little ones may not sound ideal to you, but in all honesty, it wasn’t so bad. Since we knew the snow coming and my husband left his truck at the bottom of the driveway so he can get to work and bring groceries home when we need them. The power didn’t go out, and we stayed nice and toasty thanks to our woodstove.

This time, stuck on the mountain, gave me a lot of time to catch up on some things that needed catching up on. I got to spend a bit more time doing fun things with the boys as we were a bit of our normal routine. And, I had a chance to sit quietly and really think about things.

Instead of looking at winter as a slow, cold time in a negative context, I’m embracing these slow days and making the most of them. I’m accepting the cold, crisp air by taking deep, purifying breaths of it and warming my cold hands by the fire. I’m grateful for who I am, and I’m excited all the more for who I’ll become. I’m learning patience, accepting vulnerability, hopefully becoming wiser and finding courage to move forward, and just resting in the quiet potential that this season of life brings.

Okay, mama. I hope you’ve enjoyed this little glimpse into the past month with me. 

I’m looking forward to you sharing your thoughts on these things with me in the comments below. And, if you have something that you loved this past month… I’d love to hear about it too!
  1. TIA says:

    Do you make your own mineral makeup or buy it? One of my other loves is makeup but since ive started my natural living journey my makeup has been much neglected. In fact I’m a self-taught makeup artist and do makeup for weddings (friends and friends of friends, not a business), but I’m loathe to put the chemicals on myself or anyone else. I have a hard time believing I can acheive the level of prettyness and staying power that im used to with a diy makeup. If you have a quality chemical free line you reccommend i would love to hear about it. Thanks so much.

  2. Monica says:

    From western Pa, we miss the snowstorm we all embrace up here.. ❄️I think we were given a break on the snow this year. We were ready, than the furnace was acting up,water dripping in the kitchen , which all needed attention from our plumber . The plumber finally came and said the fan might have had ice around it which cause the rumbling noise. Nothing wrong with the furnace, the plumber said. Longs we have heat, we are happy with this bitter cold we been having.. Sorry no fireplace here, would love to sit by the fire, but instead I burned my homemade bee wax candle to purify the air inside this home. If I lost heat I would use my clay pots with my bee wax candle, in each room to keep it bearable. Don’t get me wrong I love winter, the soft snowflake falling, getting ready for a blanket of fertilizer for the garden .?
    Makeup me wear makeup? No I hate wearing makeup, I always felt I was being smothered. My skin can’t breathe so I go naked or herbal salve is my only go on my skin.
    I made lemon thyme honey tincture this past Fall and it has been a throat saver for us. Along with the elderberry syrup. I will have to try your new usnea tincture and be ready for chest colds in my pantry. Thanks Meagan for sharing.
    Shopping here, well one has to be ready in the far north where I live. This is where canning, baking, freezing all help us save on food. A lot of hard work in the Fall really pays off when yu cannot go to the store to replenish ones supplies.
    I’m trying something new this winter by making Greek yogurt, oh is it good.. The whey I drained off of the yogurt , I’m making sauerkraut , fermented yellow beans, so good yet getting your probiotic . Yes fermentation will be my next hobby.??
    Reading?? Still my herbal books, garden books from bulk herb store, oh the seed catalogs are in. In meantime I’m still knitting away to strengthen my hands from damage of car accident. Trying to get in the mood to make homemade diapers. Yep yu guess it, more babies in the family, and girls this time. We are excited!
    From our house to your, keep warm and stay healthy with your lovely family. Just love those boys! Thank you for sharing and take care.

    • Meagan says:

      You’re such a busy woman, Monica! Thanks for sharing!

      • Monica says:

        I’m trying Meagan to cut cost yet keep us healthy..Not always easy, always takes work. Keeping busy keeps me happy.☔️ Sometimes a woman job is never done, no matter how old we get.

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