Honor your wine, make a cork wreath

I started collecting corks over eight years ago and finally accumulated enough to make a wreathe. It seemed a lovely way to preserve memories of milestones celebrated, both large and small. What is wine if not a delicious & meaningful marker for family, friendship, love, holidays, achievements, rites of passage, unforgettable travel destinations and extraordinary meals? I found fantastic cork wreath DIY directions {here}.

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Spring Energy Clearing

With Spring beckoning, this is a perfect time for cleansing and refreshing the energy in your home. I found this Space Clearing Ritual in The Good Energy Book by Tess Whitehurst – which I’ve condensed for simplification purposes.

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Preparation

  1. Open all windows. Remove all exposed food/drink/pet food
  2. Make a clearing mist with 20 drops peppermint essential oil and 40 drops Rosemary essential oil.
  3. Pick up a sage bundle
  4. Place sea salt on a plate with a tea light candle in the center.

Ritual

  1. Starting in the center of your home (for most, that would be your living room) light the candle and place the plate of salt in the center of the room. Circling about the room, clap your hands being sure to include corners and closets to draw out the stagnant “old” energy.
  2. Light a bundle of sage and move counterclockwise to purify the stagnant energy.
  3. Spray the room with the peppermint and rosemary clearing mist moving in a clockwise direction.
  4. Repeat in each room of your home until finished.
  5. Extinguish the candle and flush the sale down the toilet.
  6. Shower and cleanse with lavender salt scrub.
  7. Eat carbohydrates and drink 16 ounces of water.

Namaste

Namaste, loosely translated means “the divinity within me bows to the divinity within you”. I am fond of this word because it captures the very essence of recognizing and honoring the divinity – the soul – in all living beings.

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Whispering Namaste and bringing my hands in yogic prayer to my third eye, I have created a simple ritual for honoring the life force of creatures both big and small. “Namaste” I whispered to the little oak barely surviving in the drought-stricken, hard, dry earth this past summer. “Namaste” I whisper to the one-legged bird who is trying to keep up with the rest of the flock, “Namaste” I whisper to myself when my perfectionism kicks into overdrive and I feel like I’m failing when I can’t do it all… Namaste is gracious and kind, the soul food that can feed us all

Cloutie Wishing Tree

The British Isles are full of magical places rife with fairy lore. Many of these places are marked with Cloutie trees where it is custom to tie a ribbon or cloth to the tree and make a wish.

Cloutie Tree on the Hill of Tara, Ireland

Cloutie Tree on the Hill of Tara, Ireland

While visiting the UK, I was lucky enough to stumble upon a Cloutie tree and was enchanted by all the colorful ribbons full of hopes and wishes fluttering in the wind. I tied on my own ribbon and my wish came true two months later… Since then, I always intended to make a Cloutie or Wishing Tree of my very own.

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I finally got to it, and this spectacular Azalea seemed perfect for fitting the job. With Valentine’s Day approaching, I tied white, pink and red ribbons to its delicate branches. My family and I wrote the wishes on bits of folded paper and pinned to each ribbon. Wishes for 2016, wishes for family and friends, wishes for our dear imperiled Earth are all now fluttering on my perfect little Cloutie tree. My daughter was enchanted with the project so now I think we’ve just found a lovely annual tradition!

Holiday evergreen soy candle 

Nothing evokes thoughts and memories of the holiday season quite like a Christmas tree. As a tree lover, creating a candle that effectively captured the essence of this very special time of year sent my perfectionism into overdrive. So it is with great pride that I introduce you to Green Gamine’s Winter Solstice candle!

  

Winter solstice is the first official day of Winter, and marks the shortest day and longest night of the year. Winter solstice occurs around December 21st in the Northern hemisphere.

Winter Solstice evokes holiday memories with evergreen top notes of fir balsam and spruce sweetened with warm clove and vanilla musk. 

The “Winter Solstice” candle is offered seasonally in a limited quantity as part of the Saison Des Fêtes or “Holiday Season” collection. 

The Winter Solstice affirmation can be found on the label reading: “Celebrate Miracles”.

Each seasonal candle is decorated festively with a bit of removable evergreen trim around the top rim, which can be tossed if the clean lines of our classic look are your preference. 

Remember, all our candles are already sweetly packaged gift-ready!

Autumn Seasonal Soy Candle

Autumn Equinox marks the first day of Autumn which is usually around September 21st in the Northern Hemisphere. Equinox means “equal night” and on the equinox, night and day are nearly exactly the same length.

This year, the Autumn Equinox is September 22nd, but many believe the Full Moon closest to the equinox –  called the Harvest Moon – is more powerful and a better marker for celebrating the holiday. This year, the Harvest Moon falls on September 27th and is one of the most magical nights of the year. Not only is it a Blood Moon so rare it won’t take place again for another 18 years, but it is also the night of a lunar eclipse. There is no doubt that some very powerful universal energy is focused on Earth this Equinox!

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Autumn is historically a time to harvest the bounty of the Earth, but since there are very few of us living off the land these days, instead we can celebrate the harvesting of the blessings gathered throughout the year. The Autumn Equinox candle’s affirmation is “Harvest Blessings” fragranced with Apple Cinnamon. This scent is elegantly captured in a cool, crisp apple sweetened with sugar and cinnamon making for a quintessential Fall Scent.

Announcing the Seasonal Candle Collection

In days of old, our ancestors lived more closely tied to nature and the Earth’s seasons. Archeologists have discovered ancient monuments aligned precisely with the sun, moon and stars on the dates marking seasonal changes.

To honor those sacred days, we proudly introduce our Saison Des Fêtes or “Holiday Season” collection for sale on Etsy through December. The collection includes three gorgeously fragranced candles: Autumn Equinox scented with Apple Cinnamon, All Hallows Eve scented with Pumpkin Spice and Winter Solstice scented with Evergreen.

Like all Green Gamine soy artisan candle collections, each Saison Des Fêtes candle has a unique affirmation corresponding to the natural energy of the holiday it celebrates.

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80 Acres Lavender Balm for Sleep

The chaos of day-to-day life can make it difficult to unwind at night. Even when you’re physically exhausted, it can be impossible to turn off your racing mind. I created a simple ritual, which once instilled as a habit, my body now automatically recognizes the relaxation cues. I light my Green Gamine Lavender candle aligned with the energy of serenity, drink a warm cup of peppermint tea and dab a little Lavender body balm on my collar bone. The sweet, pure scent of lavender instantly soothes me and carries me away to a distant escape… a lavender field in Provence, perhaps?

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Turns out, I don’t have to travel that far, even in my dreams.  80 Acres Lavender Olive Oil Body Balm is produced at the Mcevoy Ranch Estate in Petaluma, CA. It is certified organic product containing Beeswax, Olive Oil and lavender grown, pressed and produced on the farm. Take that, Provence! (Just kidding, I still love you)

Green Gamine candles now available at the Loop in Sonoma

I am completely thrilled to announce you can now find Green Gamine candles at The Loop in Sonoma Square! The Loop is an exquisitely curated boutique in the heart of California’s wine country, full of chic clothing, luxurious accessories, scintillating handmade jewelry, and now, artisan candles!

The Loop Sonoma

The lovely ladies who run the shop are warm and welcoming, and strive to stock high-quality items that are locally crafted and made in the USA.

The Loop Boutique

Shopping at The Loop is a delightful experience both with its friendly, low-key shopkeepers, and artfully arranged goods in an elegantly appointed ambiance.

The Loop Sonoma Square

I highly suggest anyone visiting the Sonoma and Napa valleys to pop in for a visit – prepare to be inspired!

21 Days to Master Affirmations

By now it should be pretty obvious I’m an affirmation enthusiast. I can personally attest to the power affirmations hold in positively transforming your life. One of my all-time favorite books devoted to affirmations is 21 Days to Master Affirmations by Louise Hay. Hay is one of the forerunners of the self-empowerment and Law of Attraction dynasties, as well as the founder of Hay House Publishing.

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21 Days is a quick, easy and fun read showcasing the central ideas in several of her most popular titles. Research has shown that establishing a habit requires 21 days of practice. Each of the 21 days in this title are broken into chapters starting with an explanation of affirmations and the power they have to transform your life.

Every thought you think and every word you speak is an affirmation. All of your self-talk, your internal dialogue, is a stream of affirmations. You’re using affirmations every moment whether you know it or not. You’re affirming and creating your life experiences with every word and thought.

Hay explains that your beliefs are a result of habitual thinking patterns that go back as far as childhood. She covers everything from self esteem and fearful emotions, to critical thinking and forgiveness; from healing and aging to job success, money and prosperity. The book is packed with exercises to assist in making positive changes in each of these areas.

Affirmations are statements going beyond the reality of the present into the creation of the future through the words you use in the now.

Here are some valuable tips for practicing affirmations taken from the pages of 21 days…

– It is important to always state your affirmations in the present tense. If you start an affirmation with “I am going to” or “I will have” then your desire remains anchored in the future instead of summoning it NOW.

– Always check in with your emotions and let them be your guide. If you maintain a positive outlook, then your affirmation has a fertile environment in which to grow.

– When you catch yourself in a negative thought, redirect your mind by replacing the thought with: This is an old thought; I no longer choose to think that way. Then find a positive thought to replace it as quickly as possible. It can be as simple as, “I am grateful the sun is shining today.”

– Don’t waste time arguing for your limitations. The more you talk about a problem, the more you anchor it into place.

– Avoid sharing your affirmations and desires with non-believers. Their doubt and skepticism can taint the process and shake your belief in your desire being on its way.

21 Days to Master Affirmations can be downloaded to your iPad or Kindle through the iBook and Kindle apps for just $2.99 – a worthy investment in my opinion! This book is a great introduction to the topic for beginners, and a wonderful refresher full of powerful affirmations for pros. If you are interested in learning more about how affirmations influence your subconscious mind, you can read my blog post here.

Choose new thought to think about yourself, and choose new words to tell yourself how magnificent you are and that you deserve all the good things life has to offer.