Earth, this magnificent blue and green planet, exists within the universe on a system of checks and balances. From a distance, it is a beautiful ball twirling around the sun as it floats through space in its never-ending dance with the moon. Up close, it is teeming with life and elemental pleasures, all woven within the tapestry of Mother Nature’s creation.
Above and beyond all else, we are earthly beings. Indeed, while we are made of stardust, it’s earth where we draw our breath, and earth by which we live our lives. When we align ourselves with nature, we achieve a more balanced way of being. The more balanced our living, the better that life becomes.
One way to merge our life with nature is to live in sync with the seasons. If you become aware of the outdoors throughout the year, you will notice how all of nature shifts according to the seasons. Humans, too, lived in sync with the seasons for centuries, only recently moving away from the natural cycles. This is due to all of our modern-day inventions. We can control the climate of our homes and businesses with air conditioning and heating. We have artificial lighting, and we transport out of season produce into our stores, ensuring bananas and berries are available year around!
The result is, our bodies are no longer attuned to the seasons as they once were. Our earthly bodies are becoming trapped in our artificial world. This is one of the steps towards ill health and disease.
If you don’t already, I invite you to sync with the seasons. Fall is coming on the 22nd of September, and fall is my favorite season! The days become shorter and cooler, the leaves turn into beautiful living works of art, and an invigorating crispness forms in the air.
Fall is for gathering what is needed to face oncoming winter. Pantries need to be checked for expired food items and restocked for the coming months. Blankets can be pulled from their storage for easy access during the cooler nights. Summer items can be put away, and a fall atmosphere introduced to the home with scents and scenery.
The end of summer brings with it damage done to skin and hair by summer sun, pools, and salty ocean waters. Perhaps we over-indulged in foods such as burgers, hot dogs, chips, sodas and cocktails more than fresh fruits, vegetable, water and teas.
Fall is an optimum time for nourishing the body and building up the immune system. When I owned a spa, we would add to our service menu various selections to help prepare the body for winter. Many of these can be done right at home!
Start with a homemade body scrub to exfoliate, brighten and soften your skin. These are easily made with products you most likely have at home.
Coffee Scrub- mix a half cup of used coffee grounds with half cup of oil. Check the consistency and add more grounds, or oil, as needed for your liking. I prefer either grapeseed, coconut, olive or almond oil. In the shower, simply scrub yourself all over with the mixture and rinse off. Coffee scrubs are very invigorating and have a refreshing smell.
Sugar Scrub- mix up the same way you did the coffee scrub. You can add essential oils depending on what you prefer. Some examples are lavender oil for relaxing, grapefruit for alertness, ginger for warming.
After a nice scrub and shower, before you towel off, massage into your skin some soothing coconut oil. Or, again, whatever oil you prefer. Pat dry with the towel, and your skin should be soft and glowing!
Next, have a sit with a healthy detox, immune building tea. You can buy already made bags of tea, or go to your herb garden or natural food store and buy the flowers and/or leaves for a fresher, healthier tea. The following are some different teas to try for your fall immunity building.
*Please note – you should always check with your doctor before trying new herbs if you are on medications.
Echinacea – using flowers, leaves, roots. This herb is wonderful to have on hand year around as it not only helps recovery from colds and flu, it can help prevent them with its immune boosting ability.
Lemon Balm – using leaves. Lemon balm is in the mint family, though it has a lemony taste. It strengthens your immune system while relaxing the mind.
Lavender – using the flower buds. Lavender tea is well-known for its calming effect. Did you know lavender also supports the immune system? If you make a lavender tea, a little will do it. Lavender can become overbearing when too strong. However, you can add it to any other tea blend as a boost and flavor enhancer.
Ginger – using root shavings. Ginger is warming and if too strong for your taste, add a little honey. Ginger will help your body fight colds, flu, and boost the immune system.
Incorporate fall-foods into your diet. Not sure what’s in season? Visit the local farmers market. Not only will you get in-season vegetables but you will get fresh, locally grown food! These fall foods include apples, arugula, beets, broccoli, brussels sprouts, cabbage, eggplant, fennel, garlic, horseradish, okra, onions, pumpkins, radishes, spinach, sweet potatoes, turnips, wild mushrooms, and zucchini.
Eating foods in season means eating foods that are fresh and have properties that will help the body adjust to the season. For example, apples are picked in the fall. Apples are cooling and help the body cool down from summer heat and activity, plus they are excellent for the digestive system, and a healthy digestive system is a must for maintaining health and vitality.
If you have any favorite fall time recipes or traditions you would like to share, I would love to hear them!