Tiny was born with a eye and mind for herbs. Really, she has a keen understanding of all plant life, especially trees. But herbs are something that she has always been drawn to.
Ever since she has a little freedom in the form of walking, she would make “potions” from the herbs in our yard, herbs we foraged, and herbs we had in the house dried. She would make her versions of herb salads, soups, teas, and tonics. Sometimes she would really eat or drink her creation and other times she used it in her play, feeding it to her sick or injured stuffed animals.
While I was always right there alongside her, I never interfered with Tiny's creations. In fact, I never needed to. She had an innate sense of which herbs to use for which condition or which herbs to use for simple enjoyment. She blew my mind constantly. Sure, I had a cabinet full of herbs and I made all kinds of things with them but I honestly never thought she was paying much attention.
It is because of my daughter that I really became motivated to expand my knowledge base on medicinal herbs. I took a couple of incredible courses, read every book I could get my hands on, and experimented often. Tiny was of course right at my side. While she loved helping me with all my creations, I could tell that she was craving more.
Fast forward a couple of years and something pretty cool happened. My friend Amanda, the original Natural Living Mamma, launched a kickstarter program and successfully funded a monthly Herb Box club as well as the incredible Natural Herbal Living Magazine, a monthly ePublication. I signed up for it the second it was available and loved it. In fact I loved it so much, I became an affiliate for it. This was definitely something unique and worth promoting.
The monthly delivery of the Herb Box became our gateway to homeschooling.
When we first started receiving the box and magazine, Tiny was just four years old so we weren't doing anything formal. But working with the Herb Box each month has been beyond educational. Not only does Tiny get to learn about a specific herb but she is able to get hands on with it. She measures out ingredients to make things like salves, tinctures, teas, lotion, creams, and more. She learns how to safely melt butters, beeswax, and oil. She learns about the proper methods of combining ingredients. But best of all, she absorbs, first hand, the ways in which each herb can help heal or just promote better health.
I wouldn't trade this small monthly investment for the world. Not only does it give Tiny something to look forward to each month (what child doesn't love a box in the mail) but it also opens the door for us to move beyond the herb of the month and learn about the other ingredients supplied for that month's project. This has been our gateway to homeschooling and a great way for me to follow Tiny's lead, learn how the two of us will successfully work together as we move into more formal homeschooling, and to use herbs as part of official lessons.
I highly recommend the Herb Box of the Month for children of any age although I think it is best suited for 4 and up.
I absolutely love everything about the Herb Box and the monthly Natural Herbal Living Magazine. But there was one minor thing that would have made this so much better. A PRINT edition of the magazine. You see, I try to really limit Tiny's use of electronic media. I personally feel that there is something very special and important about holding a book or magazine in your hands, especially as a child. It has a magic to it that is lost when reading on an electronic device. So while the information in each month's magazine was incredible, the recipes phenomenal, and the pictures gorgeous, Tiny and I typically didn't spend as much time with the publication as I would have liked. But that is hopefully about the change.
Amanda has been inundated with emails from her subscribers with this exact complaint. They really, really wanted a print magazine. The problem is, it is simply to expensive to produce and Amanda didn't feel good about charging so much for it. So, she did some soul searching and decided to open another Kickstarter campaign. If she successfully raises the funds needed, then the Natural Herbal Living Magazine will be available in print for an affordable monthly subscription rate. Cool huh? I'm super stoked!
To help drum up some excitement around this, Amanda is offering a fantastic giveaway!
Worth over $600, one winner will receive the first year's omnibus of Natural Herbal Living Magazine IN PRINT as well as the first year's worth of Herb Boxes. Yes, that is all 12 herb boxes including rosemary, ginger, rose, echinacea, elder, hawthorn, dandelion, nettle, plantain, chamomile, calendula, and basil. FYI – I have a scrub recipe featured in the Basil issue. You can enter at the end of this post. Easy peasy.
Wait – before you enter the giveaway!