Oh, the fun of parenting – the joys of having an amazing, hilarious but at times thoroughly confusing and infuriating small person (or people) to look after. We are confident that there is no job on the planet that is as hard as being a parent or carer. We, like you no doubt, look to nature to help support our family and ourselves. That is why we created Wild Dispensary and why we talk about utilising the plants around us to support our health and wellbeing. We love finding the best ways to work with our natural surroundings and plant allies and we want you to be as excited about it as we are.
Here are some simple ideas to help sneak in some medicinal plant magic into your life:
- Consider using herbal teas or our tonics as smoothie bases. Most kids love smoothies and by adding in an extra boost, you can rest easy knowing that even if they don’t eat dinner, they have had something nutritious and beneficial. We often use our Daily Boost Tonic or our Immunity Tonic in berry smoothies to help support immune systems and also energy levels. All very important as we start to wind up the year and everyone’s energy levels start to dip. For you – our Daily Boost makes an awesome mid-afternoon hot drink, or you could freeze some in an ice cube to add to sparkling water instead of wine.
- Go out into your garden with your children and see if you can identify any edible ‘weeds’ like chickweed, cleavers, miners’ lettuce, nettle, parsley and make a weed pesto. You can also add them into green hummus and guacamole. This is a great thing to have on toasted sandwiches or to mix through pasta, and kids love finding and making things from the garden. Dark green leafy vegetables and edible weeds like these contain vitamins C, K and magnesium which are all helpful nutrients for our families.
- Herbal teas are an awesome way to start children with plant medicine. If you are new to blending herbal teas, check out our blog on the basics here. Chamomile, peppermint or nettle tea can be paired with flavours that children love (like honey or a dash of maple syrup), berries or mint to help support small people and their bodies. Nettle in particular is a great plant to support plant-based iron levels, mineral levels and it also works as a tonic within the body (meaning it can help with energy levels). We often make nettle and mint tea and leave it overnight for a refreshing drink the next day. Chamomile and honey make a great tea to calm nerves or upset stomachs, as does a weak peppermint tea. You can even make herbal tea ice blocks or nice cream with plant infusions. One of our favourites is a milk of your choice that has been gently heated with a tablespoon of dried chamomile, oat straw or lemon balm and then blended with frozen bananas. You can also add in some edible flowers to make it look pretty (MasterChef says presentation is key).