Category Archives: lavender

flowers herbs lavender

Summer Solstice wreath

While harvesting peppermint yesterday, I came across a stem that was at least 4ft. tall growing within my fairy rose. I pulled it out and wound it into a circle to form the beginnings of a wreath.

summer solstice wreath 3

I added more peppermint, then lavender, and wanted the bright yellow yarrow to get my sunny punch of yellow. I think it makes the perfect Summer Solstice wreath!

summer solstice wreath 2   summer solstice wreath 1

“That’s all,”

By the way, I’ve really been enjoying Instagram lately and have been posting frequently; I would LOVE to follow others, if you have an account please share in the comment section, if you want to follow me click here.

doings herbs lavender

lavender festival

 A long time dream of mine has been to own a little lavender farm.

1 12   11 3 10 9 4 7 6 5   2

Spending time at the Peaceful Acres Lavender Farm’s lavender festival yesterday made my dream feel like more of a possibility! I have been successful with the same abundant varieties they grew- Hidcote, Grosso, Munstead, and English. They raised the earth up in rows and put dark landscaping cloth down the rows. I can do this, I have the space and the right soil…..perhaps start with a small row in the Fall or next Spring? Yes, I think I will! Think of all the wonderful lavender products the girls and I could make!

lavender festival

A recent picture of the many women in the family! That’s me in the dark shirt with the camera strap and green canvas backpack. We really should have posed for a better shot.

“That’s all,”



activities homemade gifts lavender nature play tutorial valentine

scented herbal play dough

I really love this time of year. There is no holiday let down for me, we keep the twinkle lights up so we can enjoy their sparkle during these dark and gray Ohio days and decorate the mantle with hearts where the stockings used to be. I love the fires in the fireplace, snow on the ground, pink cheeks, hot chocolate, and the pink and red colors of Valentine’s day coming up. I really love Valentine’s Day and making it special for my little ladies.

We felt the need to bring a little spring into the holiday this year with scented herbal dough. I made a batch of pink rose petal scented dough and Fauna made a batch of purple lavender scented dough.

You need:

1 cup flour
1/2 cup salt
1 cup water
1 tablespoon canola oil (or any other oil you have on hand)
2 teaspoons cream of tartar
3-4 drops essential oil (we used rose and lavender)
food coloring (we used purple and red)
2 tablespoons dry  herbal leaves or flowers (we used lavender buds and rose petals)

To make:

1. Add a couple drops of the food coloring into the 1 cup of water.
2. Put flour, salt, cream of tartar, oil, and tinted water into a medium sauce pan.
3. Cook the mixture over medium heat until it bubbles, stirring constantly until it thickens.
4. Remove from heat then stir in a few drops of essential oil and the dried herbs or flowers.
5. Put the dough onto a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth.
6. You can store any leftover dough in an airtight container or leave the creations out to airdry.
     *They take about a week to dry and they will fade in color a little bit. The lavender dough has kept its scent the best.

 Fauna  made some snails, Araina made a cat with a bed and ball of string, and we all made hearts.

We strung the hearts to hang in our windows and on bookcase knobs (don’t forget to add holes if you want to string them).

“That’s all,”

felt herb herbs homemade gifts lavender moon sewing

how to make a dream pillow- moon phases free pattern

I like to give my little ladies new dream pillows every year on the night of the winter solstice. I started this tutorial back in July of 2009, but never got around to finishing it. Seriously, this post has been sitting, partially finished, in my dashboard for over a year! I felt now was a great time to share the pattern and how to.
What you need:
gray felt 
yellow felt
black cotton emb. floss
yellow cotton emb. floss
silver shiny emb. floss
straight pins
dry herbs
wool or polyfill stuffing
 Step 1- Cutting out the moon shapes

  cut out pattern, pin crescent on one

 You should have 3 pieces: 2 full moons and one crescent moon. Pin the crescent moon onto one of the gray circles. Leave the other gray circle as is, this will be your full moon piece.

Step 2: The detailing **Click on the orange links for “stitch how to”
I used the split stitch for the details in the moon. Split stitch the eye and craters on the crescent moon side of the pillow.

  split stitch eye and craters

 Now split stitch the eyes and craters on the full moon piece.

  eyes and crater on full moon

 Whip stitch the crescent moon to it’s gray backing.

whip stitch crescent to moon

whip stitch the inside of the crescent moon

Step 3: Stitching the moons together

Put right sides together of both moons now. Blanket stitch or whip stitch the moons together, leaving a small opening for stuffing and the herbs. I did a blanket stitch here.

  blanket or whip stitch

blanket stitch or whip around edges

Step 4: Add dried herbs and filling. Stitch closed.

I like to add dried lavender buds or rosemary to their pillows because we grow it organically in our garden.  Here’s a little list to work with, you can mix and match but make sure the odor is pleasant and not over bearing.

Herbs for the pillow-

angelica : prophetic dreams and visions
anise: use  a little to repel nightmares
bay laurel: inspiration; repels negativity
cedar:  repel bad dreams
cloves: retrieves buried memories; use sparingly
hops: restful sleep and healing
lavender: calming and helps to fall asleep
marjoram: relieves depression
mugwort: visions and prophetic dreams
mullein: repels bad dreams
rosemary: avoid nightmares and headaches; great for memory; use sparingly
st. johns wort: banishes spirits


Little  Etsy shop update- I have a new kitty design, there is still free shipping and the 15% off total purchase sale will go on through the week until Sunday evening (for 5orangepotatoes blog readers only). Type in SNOW15 at checkout to get the 15% off the total purchase. I will ship daily until the 19Th- there is still time to order and receive before Christmas. If you don’t see something in my shop that you had your eye on or want a different color let me know, I can possibly take custom orders through Friday (hit the contact button under my fox picture at the shop). Thank you all who have made my shop so successful through this giving time of the year! I really appreciate your business and have loved getting to know a lot of you!

“That’s all.”

herb herbs homemade gifts lavender sewing

a gentleman’s sleeve pine sachet

By the time we were ready to take the Yule tree outside, we had little fir needles all over the place. They still had a delicious aroma and I knew tossing them outside just wouldn’t do. A special fir needle and lavender sachet, using a sleeve from my husband’s old dress shirt, was in the making. You could easily hand-sew this sachet using a backstitch; but we chose to use the sewing machine this time (a goal of mine this year is learning to sew on a machine).

pine needles

You need:
-long sleeve shirt with buttoned cuffs
-2 cups of herbs- we used evergreen needles and lavender but of course you could use any herb mixture for this sachet; I think fir needles, dried orange peel, and cloves will be our next mix
-needle or sewing machine

To do:
1. Cut a sleeve off  the shirt making it 15 inches long from the bottom of the buttoned cuff.
2. Leave the sleeve right-side out, sew a straight seam close to the cut, making a pocket for the herbs.

cut at 15 inches, then straight stitch a seam

3. Turn the sleeve inside out and unbutton.

turn inside out

4. Stuff with about 2 cups of herbs.

turn inside out, stuff w herbs

4. Sew a straight seam to close up the herb pocket. This is a little tricky because the herbs will want to spill out, decrease the amount of herbs if need be.

stitch straight seam to close pocket

5. Pull the cuff over the herb pillow so the right side of the cuff is showing, then button the cuff.

pull pull remaining cuff over sachet & button

There you have it, a sachet for the gentlemen in your life. Now, Dave just laughed when I told him it was a gentleman’s sachet, and the little ladies took off with them and put them under their pillows. They were pretty sentimental about them because they were made from Dave’s old shirts.

pine and lavender

Another idea using evergreen needles is Julia Daby’s balsam squirrel, directions at  the wonderful Rhythm of the Home online publication. Be sure to visit all the wonderful articles there! Enjoy!

activities flowers herb lavender nature play

lavender/rosemary ink

On our Williamsburg trip, my granny (that’s great granny to the little ladies), bought the girls each a white feather quill pen. The timing was great because I have been wanting to make a lavender/rosemary scented ink. This was a wonderful herbal activity leaving the house smelling great!

What you need:
sprigs of lavender (dry or fresh)
sprigs of rosemary (dry or fresh)
enamel pot

1. Use enough herbs to cover the bottom of your pan. Use your nose to help get just the scent you want.


2. Add enough water to cover the tops of the herbs.
3. Bring to a boil and let simmer until the water has reduced to a generous tablespoon.
4. Strain and you’re left with a pretty light brown ink. You could always add a drop or two of black ink to darken the color.

lavenderrosem. ink

The little ladies really enjoyed writing and drawing with wonderfully smelling ink and the gorgeous white feathers.

fauna and rain quill pins

Thanks for the feathers Granny!

lavenderrosemary ink 3

You could use any wonderful smelling herb for this activity. I think we will try a peppermint/lavender ink next time; it would be great for writing holiday cards. Who wouldn’t love a peppermint scented card for the holidays!?!?
Oooh, and a handmade gift of  scented ink, a calligraphy pen,  and homemade paper would be a lovely holiday gift idea! If you use the ink as a gift, you must add calligraphy ink to it or the herb solution will mold.

ink and handmade paper