How to Find Happiness this Winter!
If you've had the pleasure of visiting our gardens in the peak of summer, you've experienced the surreal colors that nature can display. The vibrant purples, brilliant yellows, bold greens and beaming reds that make up our beautiful landscape, play a significant role in the healing therapy that they can provide. Over the next several months, we will be exploring some of these colors, along with their role in our garden, their psychological effects, some exciting decor and recipe ideas and some of our favorite Secret Garden products that incorporate this month's color! January's color is yellow!
Have you ever repainted a room in your home and noticed how it changes the atmosphere or even how your mood changes upon entering the space? Color is known to have both positive and negative effects on our mood, mindset and mental focus. Red can radiate love and excitement, blue can provide calmness and yellow can be energizing. Though very little theoretical and empirical work has been done to definitively prove how color correlates with psychology, the effects can be obvious in our day to day lives. These ideas are a driving force in marketing and advertising along with interior design, fashion, construction and so much more. Perceptions of color are often subjective, though to a certain degree, most of us share the same generalization regarding colors; white is clean and pure, dark colors can be cozy, bright colors are energizing and up-lifting. Ancient cultures like the Chinese and Egyptians, saw the value in color and utilized their properties as therapy for injuries and illnesses. As alternative treatments have grown in popularity in recent years, more research has surfaced regarding the relationship between one's environment and their health and well-being. Have you noticed how color affects your day-to-day life?
January's Color ~ Yellow!
For the month of January, we will be focusing on the color yellow! Yellow is attention grabbing and embodies energy while still providing warmth and cheerfulness, though some might find it overwhelming in large amounts. At the Secret Garden, you can find yellow in our u-cut perennial garden. Throughout the summer, we have Lillies, Irises, Black-Eyed Susans, Daisies and so much more that radiate beautiful shades of yellow. Surrounding yourself with vibrant yellows can boost your mood and enthusiasm. Below are various ways to incorporate yellow and lemon balm into your day!
Décor & Entertaining
Brighten you and your family's day with a pop of yellow! Lots of vibrant colors can be overwhelming for some people, but accents of cheerful colors can brighten a room and bring a smile to your face! Yellow throw pillows and blankets can brighten up a living room or bedroom. Cheerful hand towels can make a great edition to your kitchen or bathroom. My favorite way of displaying yellow is with a gorgeous arrangement of vibrant flowers. During those gloomy winter days, place a vase by your bedside, in the kitchen or bathroom for a joyful reminder of those warm, summer days.
One of our favorite associations with yellow is lemon balm! This incredible herb has so many healing properties, fun recipes and it smells great! This past summer, we added over 1,100 peppermint, sage and lemon balm plants to our gardens! Lemon balm is such a versatile herb with culinary and aromatherapy benefits. Lemon balm makes delicious tea and infused water that can soothe upset stomachs, decrease inflammation, lower blood sugar and calm the mind and body. When diffused, lemon balm can boost your mood, improve cognitive function and focus, calm anxiety and help manage ADHD symptoms. Add lemon balm to salad, protein dishes or use it as a substitute for lemon peel for a zesty addition to any meal! Having lemon balm in your garden attracts bees, a vital pollinator, and dried lemon balm makes a great addition to potpourri! Add a bit of lemon balm to a bath for a re-energizing soak. To learn more about the benefits of lemon balm essential oil click here.
Lemon Balm Tincture Recipe
Tinctures are a great way to experience the amazing benefits of herbs without consuming large amounts. When combined with the herbs, the alcohol or vinegar extracts the oils and creates an infused, concentrated tincture. Below is a recipe for lemon balm tincture. This recipe is great for promoting sleep, relaxing and unwinding after a long day, reducing stress and easing upset stomachs. Tinctures will keep for many years if stored properly and are great for kids, just substitute vinegar or vegetable glycerin for vodka. We recommend starting with a dropper full of tincture and increasing the dose if you feel it's necessary.
Give These Products a Try!
We have loved exploring all the ways to use and incorporate lemon balm into our products. Our Farmhouse scent Hand Soap and Body Lotion, which was released this past summer, is a refreshing blend of lemon, sage and lavender and even includes some of our lemon balm essential oil, distilled right at the Secret Garden! Have you tried our Lavender & Lemon specialty bar soap? Colored with turmeric and scented with essential oils, this soap will leave you smelling great and your skin feeling silky smooth! Try out our Lavender, Lemon & Sage Shampoo Bar to get your hair squeaky clean without harsh chemicals and additives. And new this year, our Lavender & Lemon Balm Loose-Leaf Tea! This delicious blend will have you feeling your best in no time!
Brys Secret Garden's In-House Blogger
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