Allow me to introduce Melissa Gale of I Am Aromatics.
She is a long-time friend of Nourish and Nest, passionate aromatherapist and our collaborator for the new natural perfumes range.
Melissa is wise, grounded and thoughtful. I thoroughly enjoyed working with her on this range and thought you all may enjoy this little insight into her journey and business.
We sat down for tea (Chai for Melissa, Settle for me) at Nourish and Nest stockist Moore Street General recently and I enjoyed catching up with her so much, I wanted to share a bit of our chat here on the blog too.
How did you get in to aromatherapy?
In my late teens I started experimenting with essential oils and was very much drawn to them for the effects on the emotions and of course the amazing aromas. In my mid 20's I went on to study Remedial Massage and specialised in Clinical Aromatherapy and continued in this career for 15years.
What do you love about essential oils?
I love that when essential oils are used cautiously (as there can be many adverse effects to different health problems and medication interactions) and used synergistically they can have such a profound effect on shifting energy, stuck emotion and they can facilitate such a beautiful healing process.
Tell us a little about I Am Aromatics
After burning out for my 3rd time from massage, I took a break and then decided to build a website and grow the new range. I developed the signature blends I used during treatment into usable, chemical free & affordable products to use in an aromatherapy application. I Am Aromatics has allowed me to assist people on their healing journey, inspiring them to be their true self through the product range and my aromatherapy consultancy.
What are the best parts of running your business?
Flexibility, creative freedom, facilitating healing. Collaborating with beautiful not-for-profits and other likeminded business (like Nourish and Nest of course).
What are the challenges?
A flooded essential oil market, rising essential oils prices due to overuse and over selling from big overseas companies. Trying to do everything by myself. Sometimes my ongoing health issues (endometriosis) forces me to slow right down. I am learning, especially this year, to listen to these cues and plan accordingly.
What are your current small rituals?
Pranayama breathwork, meditation, prayer. Long soaks in the bath with at-home holistic skincare facials. Lighting incense, candles & of course diffusing essential oils. Drinking tea, lots of tea.
You can find I Am Aromatics here
and can shop our new Natural Perfume range here.
I haven’t done one of these posts in a while so last week I decided to document a day in my life in tea.
Autumn usually equates with extra tea drinking for me, throw #stayathome into the mix and let’s just say there’s ample tea drinking to document! Excuse the dodgy photos, these were taken on the fly on my phone.
In an ideal world, I would always wake up well before my children and have a bit of time to myself whilst the house is quiet. On such mornings, I drink a pot of one of our herbal tisanes to gently ease into the day.
But the truth is, most days my two youngest girls are up well before me and once I open my eyes, it is all systems go. On these days I turn to one of our black teas for the shot of energy that I need.
This morning I needed a good dose of bolstering so I began the day with French Lady Grey. It always feels like a treat. The hint of rose and lavender in my tea cup give me ‘queen of the castle’ vibes.
Like many of us, I am juggling multiple roles at the moment and I have been feeling quite physically run down.
When this is the case, I like to proactively support my immune system with my go-to wellbeing tea. I brew Refresh tea (lemongrass, lemon myrtle and ginger) for 10 minutes and then add a slice of lemon, a slice of ginger and small spoon of our backyard honey.
I drank this at my desk whilst getting some work done and helping my daughters with their school work.
And yep, I’m still in my pyjamas. It’s one of those days!
Sometimes on busy days, especially if my head is in a few different places, I find myself with a somewhat nervous energy building up by the middle of the day. The result is often that I can’t concentrate well, I jump from task to task or I become irritable towards those around me.
Going for a walk around the block, stopping to do some stretches and/or taking a moment to drink a cup of tea on the grass all seem to help.
As this is one of those days, a brewed myself a mug of ‘Settle’ tea. The combination of herbs in this tea makes it particularly grounding which is exactly what I needed.
And yes, finally out of my pyjamas!
There was work to be done in my studio/shed after the kids went to bed. The nights are getting cooler so a cup of Traditional Chai was the perfect evening work companion. Tonight I drank it black but I love it brewed on the stove top in milk too.
It has been a very full day and my mind is still busy and my body a little sore. So rather than just collapsing into bed, I pulled my yoga mat out, lit a candle, made a pot of Dreamy tea for my husband and myself and slowed myself down with some stretching and restorative yoga poses while we chatted a bit about our days.
I like to visualise relaxing my body and quietening my mind while I sip my Dreamy tea. I sometimes drink it during the day if I’m feeling particularly anxious, but usually I only drink it before bed and it is an effective cue for my body to wind down.
Fun fact: I don’t usually put my candle on the ground, I just did that for the photo. Then I forgot it was there and nearly burnt myself while I was stretching, ha ha! Lesson learnt :)
I really do look forward to Christmas. I love the meaning and the gathering and the kindness and the giving. But to be honest, one of the things I look forward to the most are the days directly after Christmas.. when all the festive engagements are finished, and there's a lull in between Christmas and the New Year. Even if we're working during these 'in-between' days, things seem to be a little slower and a whole lot quieter.
One of my favourite Christmas rituals is to find some time on Boxing Day to drink tea and read in bed (possibly while the kids watch Elf for the 100th time.. ahem..)
After all the gathering that the festive season involves, it's rather delightful to spend time alone and recalibrate, with a full heart and the promise of a fresh start that the New Year brings.
When the pre-Christmas days are busy and long, I look forward to the upcoming 'in-between' days. I'll be sipping French Lady Grey (the most indulgent tea to drink in bed) out of my favourite ceramic tumbler, burning our Lime & Cucumber candle and tackling my way-too-ambitious book pile (or Kindle line-up as it may be).
If you want to put together your own 'in-between days' self-care stash, don't forget to purchase your goods of ritual by Monday 18th December to ensure your order arrives before the Christmas break!
I was sharing in this post that it's taken me a little while to find my groove this year. You know, adjusting to the new schedules of the fresh year, emerging from cruisy January with some focus and purpose and finding a rhythm to the day that works in this current season of life.
I love a good list and also find that having a daily focus, small rituals to look forward to and gratitude reminders all help me fall in to a good groove.
So I put together a daily list with a few little Nourish and Nest-style extras to help myself along.
There's a place for the necessary 'to-dos' but also somewhere to write down a simple focus for each day, some self-care rituals to incorporate into our rhythms plus space for notes and gratitudes.
Sound like something you'd be in to? Then print yourself out a few copies of the Nourish and Nest Daily Rituals sheet, click on the image to download.
Small rituals: lighting a candle, pouring tea, running a bath or gathering around a meal allow us to pay homage to the beautiful wonder of the ordinary present.
These simple acts, undertaken with intention, have the ability to calm, nourish, inspire and foster gratitude. Such small rituals are ordinarily, elegantly beautiful. They are ancient and yet they are ours.
A candle-lit bath, an early morning cup of coffee when all is quiet, an end-of-the-week glass of bubbles, a stolen moment in your lunch break to sit on the grass with the sun on your face.. the possibilities are boundless.
It is a simple but profound luxury to have a few uncomplicated pleasures in life that nourish and allow you to create your own personal sanctuary, even if it is just for a moment.
Often we look for happiness, inspiration and sustenance only in the big moments, in the occasional, in the grand. But, perhaps, joy is to be found in the small rituals, in the everyday. This perspective looks upon life with wonder, believing that there is beauty to be found.
Small rituals allow us to create beauty in the most common of moments, these simple acts create pockets of grace.
The virtue of small rituals is that they allow us to see the beauty in the most common of moments. There is a shift when we start to become aware of the sweet moments of joy hidden throughout our day. Gratitude is fostered, the tribulations of life are put into perspective.
To seek and discover the endless beauty that surrounds us amongst the ordinary day-in, day-out of our lives is not to bury our heads in the sand. It is not a delusional facade that all is perfect. Rather, it is an intentional quest for the joy amongst the heartache, the peace amongst the chaos and the beauty amongst the ordinary (or better still, the beauty in the ordinary!)
Beauty can be hidden in plain sight unless we intentionally distinguish it amongst the mundane moments in which it is intertwined. It is the sun on your cheek, an unexpected warm breeze, the steam from your tea cup, a small kindness, morning light in the kitchen, laughter at the table, a brief caress, the flicker of a candle flame.
When it is our daily ritual to seek beauty, it is our daily experience that we find it. Everyday beauty inspires us, it colours in our life and invokes gratitude.Small rituals create pockets of beautiful grace. To embrace the art of small rituals is a mindset, a way of looking at the world that brings beauty and joy to the rhythms of our days and our life.
If you know anything about Nourish and Nest, you will know that the premise of the goods we handcraft and handpick are that they are goods of ritual. And that rituals, however small, can bring joy, beauty and rhythm to our days.
There are rituals that are for the everyday, rituals of celebration, seasonal rituals and then there are the time-honoured (and occassionally experimental) rituals of wellness. The small acts we turn to when we are unwell or just plain exhausted. The rituals that bring comfort and aid our recovery.
As the colder month encroach, sickness can become a little more present. And if, like me, you have a little tribe you're caring for as well as yourself, you might share the experience that nursing unwell little people (especially when you're not feeling 100% yourself) can be overwhelming at times.
Rituals of wellness, whether they be in the care we give ourselves or that which we provide to others can supply solace, comfort and bolstering predictability. And whether we are feeling well or not, isn't that something we all need sometimes?
So, I am going to share just a few of my own personal wellness rituals and would love you to share yours too in the comments if you're so inclined. The following rituals are nothing if not small and simple but that is what makes them easy to incorporate into the daily rhythm.
We believe in aligning yourself with the seasons, in nature and in life. To live seasonally is to embrace the beauty in where we currently find ourselves in the rhythmic cycle and celebrate accordingly, despite the challenges the elements or a life circumstance may bring.
As a tribute to the season at hand for those of us south of the equator - Winter, we have created a limited edition candle. As with all our candles, it is hand-poured in small batches and is created from natural coconut and soy wax.
The aroma of our newest candle is fresh and rugged, with notes of sweet pine forest, earthy cedar wood and just a hint of smokey campfire. We hope you enjoy it and that it perhaps even finds a place amongst your small rituals during this season.
As always, $1 from every candle sold is given to organisations doing their good. So far this year we have given to Unicef Australia, the A21 Campaign, One Girl and currently our donations are going to World Vision Australia's Nepal Earthquake Appeal.
Available now in our online store.