• Whitney

This is me.

Updated: Jul 8, 2020

Hello and welcome to my blog space. I want to start off my letting you in on a little bit of my life and how my journey into making skincare products started and where it stems from. Like every human on this planet, I have a story. So here goes....

My journey, come to find out, started as a child. I grew up in a small town, one where everyone knows everyone. I loved every bit of it. Things were simple. Every weekend we went to my grandparents farm. We would literally be out there from sun up to sun down. It was my favorite thing. It never got old to me.

My sister and brother would spend much of their time riding the ATV's my dad and uncle would get for a steal of a deal. They would fix them up for us and off we would go. Through trails, down to the river, and occasionally through the grandparents back yard (which they weren't fond of). I would ride a lot too but I also loved to explore. There was a small section of woods behind their house that called my name. I had my favorite tree I would climb and sit. I would gather "herbs" and put in my grandmothers old pots she let me play with. I would make everyone mud and leaf soup. At night dad would light a fire and we would gather around and talk and laugh about our day. Our uncle and dad would tell the occasional ghost story which I'm sure we will one day tell our children.

They had an awesome rock creek that ran through their property that when it dried up we would walk through and find treasures and cool rocks. We had no idea how big of an impact these weekends would have on our lives. We were literally free to be kids, to do what we wanted (within reason) outside. We would come home filthy, our hair full of dirt and our feet craving a deep scrubbing.

My grandparents loved to garden and can, and I loved to be part of that. They had herbs my grandma would cook with. They had fruit trees we would climb and pick so grandma could bake with them or put on the counter for snacks for us kids. My favorite thing was the mulberry trees that adorned the north side of their house. We would pick as high as we could reach. I remember us out picking as my little German grandma watched us from her kitchen window, then knock if we were climbing too high. Or spit some choice cuss word in German at us. Then we would secretly call each other said cuss words when the adults weren't around.

My childhood was memorable and full of wonder. What kid wouldn't want to spend every waking moment in nature? We spent most of our time out there with 2 of our cousins who we considered and loved like brother and sister. My grandparents had their hands full with all of us heathen children.

Fast forward many years later, my grandparents have since sold the farm and we've lost my grandmother and one of my cousins. I think going through these loses have since shaped who I am today. As loss does most people. As an adult, I crave to be outside in the woods. To feel the ground beneath my bare feet. To run though the woods without a care in the world, like I did as a child. I have since opened a salon in which I own with a very good friend of mine. It allows me to be me. Which in this day and age is rare. I am a hairdresser and massage therapist. I work with people of all walks of life on a daily basis. I love it. I love to hear their stories and about their lives. They become this big family who I whole heartedly care for.

I've done a lot of healing and soul searching the last couple years since we've lost them. I've also done research on my grandmothers side, which helps me understand myself a little better. I'd always known my grandma was from Germany. Never thought of it as a big deal, until after she passed. I found myself suddenly wanting to know her story and her ancestors struggles and journeys. She was a tiny spitfire of a lady with a kind and caring heart. Her family migrated from what was then, Volga Germany. They are well known in Kansas as the Volga Germans or Germans from Russia. I feel very fortunate to have read her books of their genealogy dating back to those times. It has the stories of them being forced out of their homes and relocated to Russia. They were pretty much dumped by the river and left to fend for themselves. They built their own homes and gardens and eventually thrived. They then got the opportunity to migrate to the US. They took the chance not knowing what they were in for. They made a life in Kansas and started from the ground up, yet again.

So what does that have to do with me? I look at how easy we have things now. We have the convenience of grocery stores and cars and machinery. They had nothing. I am thankful every single day for their hard work and sacrifice. Today in western Kansas I still have family there who practice German traditions. My great aunt has a garden that we talk about. I've yet to see it but would love to! She has what Germans call German blackberries. Or in German Schwartzbeeren. My brother and I also grow them. They are a night shade and said to be poison to the sensitive stomach. We can eat them just fine, i guess it's in our DNA. They thought of this berry to be so significant they brought seeds over on their ship, the Hamburg American Line, to plant in their gardens in the US. She still has these berries adorning her garden today.

I have been through many stages in my life, as most of us go through. Besides my grandparents having a major impact on my life, I worked for a woman who opened my eyes to the importance of healthy food. She changed my mindset on food. That it is fuel for our bodies, that we can prevent disease through our food choices. Mind blown! I went down a rabbit hole and never came out. Nor will I ever. I've gone back to some traditional ways of thinking. Keeping things organic, hunting for our meat (which I'm thankful to have a husband who loves to hunt). Deer is our preferred source of meat. It's high in B vitamins. My husband cooked me deer throughout both of my pregnancies. Stay tuned for my next post where I teach you to make bone broth from your deer bones! With that said, I'm not perfect and I'm going to bake and eat what we bake with my kiddos. I'm just mindful about things.

So, not only do I have emotional connection with gardening and foraging, it's also spiritual. I imagine my ancestors getting excited when they have their first tomato on the vine. Much of how I get excited about anything I grow. I have a rather large garden and have had one for years. I never understood myself or why I felt it was so intricately woven into my DNA. It just felt like a natural thing for me to do. So, every year I carefully plan my garden and my herbs to what I want to offer my family and infuse my skincare products with, or what healing herbs I want to grow for tea. All of this turns out to be the same things my ancestors did, that is why it feels so natural and right to me. There are some things deeply embedded in us that no one can ever take or change.

I feel all great and wonderful things come from our Earth. It has the ability to heal us and soothe us when our days get rough. There is nothing better than going home after a long day and making hot tea from the herbs you grew in your garden. It's so rewarding. Or fixing a meal from the deer your husband hunted and processed himself. It's all about the spiritual connection to our ancestors, our earth and the food as medicine. I'm lucky to be married to a man who understands the importance, like I do. It's something we wish to pass down to our children and hope they feel as thankful for the knowledge and experiences as we do.

I am still learning and growing every single day. I study every single day. It is my mission to help people understand that you can heal your mind, body, and spirit through the Earth and what it provides for you. I want you to be aware of what is in your products. That what you buy, make or grow comes from a reliable source. I also what you to know everything I make, collect and grow comes from my garden or a reliable source so I can share these products and my knowledge with you. So that's what this blog will be about. Helping you understand the importance of organic, helping you understand how important self care is, and hoping you are inspired to dig deeper and channel your inner ancestral history. I hope this gives you a sense of what goes into my products, the time, the planning, the history and all the love!

Warm Regards,

Whitney

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