Hey Sis, What’s the Tea? Make Your Own!

Hey Sis, What’s the Tea? Make Your Own!

All the reasons why you should grow your own tea. Ideal herbs to use and their specific medicinal health benefits.

 

Jasmine Pedretti 

Journalist | Wordsmith

There is nothing more soothing for the soul than the perfect, hot, cuppa’.

What if I told you that you could grow your own tea? In a fast-paced world that prefers convenience, we often miss out on life’s little wonders. Yes, you could buy the tea from the shop. But using freshly grown herbs from your own garden is far more special. Let me tell you why. 

First of all, our planet would thank you. We are far more waste conscious these days, however, unbeknownst to many, some brands actually make and fasten their tea bags with plastic. Therefore, by growing your own tea, you are helping to lift your eco-footprint, one glorious herb at a time. 

Gardening is also a wonderful stress reliever because it can distract you from all-consuming anxieties. In fact, a new study has discovered that regular exposure to plants and green spaces is beneficial to mental and physical health.

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 If you are going to grow your own- tip: make sure you aren’t using pesticides or chemical sprays and be sure to wash them thoroughly before use. Our Ponderings Produce Wash recipe helps to remove any nasties from your fresh herbs and produce. Fill a large bowl with water, put a healthy dash of organic APVinegar into the water, place herbs in (water should cover) and leave for 15 minutes. Rinse. (Awesome right?)

 Perfect brew:  Infuse in hot water at 90°c (194°F) to 95°c (203°F) for 2 to 4 minutes for the first and second brewing. Tear the leaves to bruise and release the goodies. Leave for 5 + minutes depending on the intensity you like your brew. 

Like all herbs you should check with a medical expert first before using as they may have drug/herbal contraindications. 

Making your own tea from the herbs you have cared for and helped prosper is also far more rewarding than buying it dried and in a bag.

 

Not only this, fresh herbs are full of goodies that benefit your health. Using fresh herbs that have not been poisoned by harsh chemicals or sat in a box for who knows how long, means you get the most from their medicinal potential. 

 Unsure of what herbs to start with? Here is a rundown of some great options, along with a few of their health remedies:

 

Pot Marigold

Botanical name: Calendula officinalis

Season to grow: all year round.

  • Contains significantly powerful flavonoids that shield cells from free radical damage and may aid menstrual cramps.  Quercetin and isorhamnetin are the two most common. These two are shown in countless medical journals to help protect the body from free radicals and helping to savenge potentially damaging toxins reducing inflammation. 
  • Calendula species have been used traditionally as culinary and medicinal herbs for centuries
  • Calendula oil is still used medicinally. The oil of C. officinalis is as a remedy for healing wounds.
  • May help prevent and relax muscle spasms. A study conducted by the Department of Biological and Biomedical Sciences found that calendula relaxed spontaneous muscle contractions. 

Peppermint

Botanical name: Mentha balsamea Wild

Season to grow: Spring or summer but can be grown indoors on a windowsill over Winter. 

 

  • Great for indigestion and bloating as it may relax the muscles in the stomach and intestine.
  • Peppermint has significant antimicrobial and antiviral activities, strong antioxidant and antitumor actions, and some antiallergenic potential.
  • May decongest and soothe sore throats because of the menthol.
  • May lower blood sugar and blood pressure.
  • Contains several flavonoids, primarily eriocitrin, luteolin and hesperidin, rich in carotines and Vit. C
  • Beautiful on its own or as a complimentary taste. 
  • Caution has been urged for peppermint oil therapy in patients with GI reflux, hiatal hernia or kidney stones.

Pineapple Sage 

Latin name: Salvia elegans

Season to grow: Spring, however, can tolerate Winter if grown in sandy or sharply-drained soil. 

 

  • A  study showed pineapple sage could act as an anti-depressing agent. 
  • Aids digestion and is good for settling an upset stomach and has a calming effect.
  • Our resident Naturopath tells us too much can dry you out, so go easy, it has been used for centuries for drying up mother’s milk. 
  • Full of antioxidants and flavonoids this is a powerful herb.
  • It tastes just like pineapple, which is delicious as a cold tea infused tea too!
  • Use the flowers to garnish, they are edible and make the perfect edition to a salad top.

 Lemon Verbena

Latin name: Aloysia citrodora

Season to grow: Spring but can be grown indoors during the colder months. Do not be alarmed when it loses its leaves during Winter, they will return. 

 

  • Rare power to strengthen muscles due to the high amount of antioxidants.
  • May reduce inflammation and joint pain caused by arthritis.
  • May boost immunity because it increases white blood cells.
  • Lemony deliciousness, the aroma is next level
  • Full of phytochechemicals such as- neral, geranial, limonene, nerol, geraniol, terpineol, caryophyllene, curcumene, isovalerianic acid, eupafolin, hispidulin, eupatorin, salvigenin, apigenin, luteolin, geraniol, flavonoids
  • Considered safe but be sure to check with a medical expert first before using this herb as it may have drug/herbal contraindications. 

Lavender

Latin name: Lavandula

Season to grow: Spring but can be planted in Autumn using bigger plants to ensure survival over Winter.

 

  • A study found that lavender tea increases the percentage of deep slow-wave sleep; the restorative sleep phase. 
  • Contains substantial amounts of antioxidants and antibacterial compounds such as vitamin C, calcium, and magnesium.
  • May detoxify the body of harmful free radicals caused by pollution, heavy drinking and smoking.
  • Lavender extracts contain flavonoids from group of apigenin, luteolin and quercetin. Higher amounts of luteolin diglucuronide are also found in the stalks, so don’t throw them away!

There is no greater time to start growing those aromatic, health restoring plants. If you grow them already, then put them to good use and brew a glorious elixir to heal the body, mind and soul. Check out our Ponderings Herbal picks of the month.

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Socks and Sandals To Help The Homeless

Socks and Sandals To Help The Homeless

Underworks has partnered with the Salvation Army, who together are on a mission to provide socks to those experiencing homelessness. #igiveasock is trending around Australia and its exciting to see an family business doing their bit. 

 

Jasmin Pedretti

Jasmin Pedretti

Journalist

Socks and thongs are a combo NOT made in heaven and neither is being displaced or homeless. 

This month, Australian family business Underworks is encouraging us to embrace this fashion faux pas to bring awareness to homelessness. They have partnered with the Salvation Army to provide a pair of warm, comfy socks to those that need it most. The mission is to help the thousands of homeless Australians who do not have access to this simple necessity that we may take for granted.  

All you need to do is upload a photo of yourself posing in socks n’ thongs (or sandals) to Instagram, along with the hashtag #igiveasock and the tag @underworksaustralia. 

With every post, a pair of socks will be donated to someone who needs it. The goal is to deliver 20,000 pairs of socks, which is almost half of Australia’s youth homelessness and a fifth of Australia’s total homeless population (2018 Census). 

Socks might not seem like much, but they are incredibly important. In fact, they are the most requested item by local shelters and least donated. Wet socks breed bacteria which causes infection. Not only this but wearing socks with holes decreases a person’s self-confidence, feeling of self-worth and motivation to seek employment. 

 

The Salvation Army Major, Brendan Nottle says that there is an increasing number of people who do not have access to clean socks. 

“In our experience working on the streets, we have seen an increasing number of people with serious foot diseases. Even worse, we have seen people lose their feet and, in some cases, lose their lives because they cannot access clean socks” says Brendan. 

A donated pair of socks will help keep people warm this winter, improve hygiene and health, and ultimately save lives. We think its worth posting a quirky pic for. 

Underworks has been keeping our tootsies warm and stylish with quality socks since 1999. They are one of Australia’s largest sock companies with a reputation for excellence.  

For this cause, they will be distributing a one-size-fits-all pair of socks made from premium excess yarns with a unique design to protect the feet from the elements.

Plus, Underworks have ensured minimised fabric waste, so the earth does not suffer. These brand-new socks have been specifically designed for the cause. 

Underworks founder and CEO Sam Todaro says:

“I Give A Sock is all about giving and offering some warmth to those who need it most. We’re proud to help make a difference.” 

You can help make a difference too. Instead of your usual selfie post, show that you give a sock and post something that will have a significant impact on someone’s life. The quirkier, the better!

 

Let us all embrace our inner bogan, put on our finest pair of socks n’ thongs and wear them with pride.

 

This is the perfect excuse to shake the dust off those rainbow-striped toe socks you have hiding in your drawer and give them the chance to shine for an unbelievable cause.       

 

You can track how many socks have been donated so far, here

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Libby Trickett, the Woman Behind the Hero

Libby Trickett, the Woman Behind the Hero

We ponder with one of Australia’s most beloved Olympic champions, Libby Trickett. Talking mental health, life-lessons and most embarrassing moments.    

Jasmin Pedretti

Jasmin Pedretti

Journalist

As one of Australia’s great Olympic champions, we have seen Libby Trickett battle it out in the pool. What we have not seen are the battles with depression that have led her to become an ambassador for Beyond Blue and R U OK?

Behind her beaming smile and warm personality, is a woman who has suffered feelings of severe hopelessness.

However, there is so much more to her narrative. This interview unravels Libby’s quirks and complexities and the wisdom she has learnt from the challenges she has faced and overcome.

You lead your life by example, and it is such a positive one for young women. If you could give your 18-year-old self one piece of golden positive wisdom, what would it be?

It’s probably quite cliché, but I would say you are enough. You don’t need to impress or be something that other people might want you to be. Being yourself is worthy enough. All the things you’ve worked through and achieved mean something. They’re all for a purpose, and although maybe you don’t see it at that time, it all turns out for the best in the long run. 

What are your secret indulgences? 

Ok, this is my dirty little secret. I’m obsessed with true crime. To the point where I’m getting concerned about myself. Anything I can find. Whether it’s on Netflix or a podcast. 

Who is the coolest person you have ever met? 

Meeting Prince William was very exciting and terrifying, I completely muffled my greeting. All you’re supposed to say is “it’s lovely to meet you Your Royal Highness”. I had verbal diarrhoea. The words just fell out of my mouth in no particular order, and then I laughed awkwardly. He was lovely about it, which made me feel less idiotic. I mean he wouldn’t remember me from a bar of soap.

What has been the funniest moment in your swimming career?

When I was about 15, I was standing on the block, and there was a bee buzzing around my head. I tried to swat at it but lost my footing and ended up slipping in such a way that I ended up falling sideways and found myself straddling the lane rope. Not funny at all at the time but it’s quite hilarious looking back on it. The whole squad was there laughing.

On a more serious note, you have struggled with your own mental health over the years. What helped you recover? 

Talking about it has been an essential part of my healing process, especially after post-natal depression. I consider myself strong and independent, but I recognised that motherhood is inherently hard. Regardless if you have a unicorn baby that sleeps 12 hours a night, the different challenges and guilt that comes with parenting is difficult. 

For me, as soon as I started talking about it, the response I received was amazing. Without talking about it, you can feel isolated because you don’t see how many other people are struggling and you wonder why you’re the only one not coping. That’s why if you look at my Instagram, most of it’s just poking fun at parenthood. 

I think it’s important to show that truth and realness because that’s part of the beauty of life as well. It’s not all perfectly curated Instagram accounts, it’s the rawness and the realness that makes life textured and layered and colourful. Social media can be such a terrible thing in terms of creating low self-esteem. 

But on the flip-side, there are these wonderful communities that can be so positive, and I certainly feel lucky with my Instagram, because I’ve received nothing but kindness from people that I may never meet physically in person. 

How has your experience with depression affected your relationships? 

They’ve become stronger. I know that the relationship with my husband Luke has just gone from strength to strength because we communicate. We talk about our fears.

 

When someone with depression reaches out, it can be hard to know what the right thing to say is. What do you recommend? 

 

That’s part of the reason why I’ve been part of Beyond Blue and R U Ok? They have incredible resources. Don’t underestimate asking ‘are you okay’? Maybe the person isn’t ready to talk, but simply showing that you’re there and that you care, is incredibly powerful for the person that might be struggling. Equally as important is listening unconditionally. Not trying to fix them, just listening to what they’re experiencing. The next thing you can do is follow up. Often, we’re like, ‘ok I’ve asked, tick, they said they were fine, they must be fine’.

If you ask again, they might be ready to talk. 

Do you know someone who might need to talk or perhaps you are experiencing feelings you are unsure about or that are creating anxiety in your life. Click HERE TO CONTACT BEYOND BLUE and HERE TO RUOK. 

The Healthy Happy Guide To Self Care by Kim Morrison

Seriously next level, Kim Morrison founder of organic Aromatherapy company Twenty8, unpacks the seceret to self care and it is anything but typical.

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The Anti-Self-Help Books that Are Actually Helpful

The Anti-Self-Help Books that Are Actually Helpful

Self-help books can be a great source of encouragement, but they can also be idealistic bullshit.

Sometimes you just don’t need the “how to be a high-achiever” and “say yes to everything” crap. Love you Socrates, but what the hell am I supposed to do with “the only true wisdom is in knowing you know nothing”.

Anti-self-help books rip up the rule-books and give you real, straightforward advice on how to live your best life. And sometimes it’s as simple as not giving a f*ck. 

Here are some of the world’s best-selling anti-self-help books. 

Anti-self help- quirky phase or wickedly intriguing insights? We check out the top 6 and give you the run down, by Jasmin Pedretti. 

Jasmin Pedretti

Jasmin Pedretti

Journalist

The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*Ck by Mark Manson

Forget everything you think you know and let Manson slap you in the face with the secret to a good life. Instead of worrying so much, find one thing that gives you meaning and devote all your fu*ks to it. This saves a whole lot of time and energy. Find that ‘thing’ that aligns with your personal values so you can stop searching for happiness and just accept your wonderful life as it is.

The Courage to be Disliked by Ichiro Kishimi and Fumitake Koga

Learn about the theories of the 19th-century philosopher, Alfred Adler, by eavesdropping on a chit-chat between a philosopher and a young boy. The theory is that you can determine your own destiny as long as you dare to live free of the shackles of other’s expectations. Essentially, don’t stress if everyone hates you because being disliked is proof that you are living according to your own principles. 

You Do You by Sarah Knight

Finally, a book that tells you to worry more about yourself and encourages you to fuck up. It might sound counterintuitive. In fact, it sounds like a guide on how to be a selfish mess. But the reality is, looking out for yourself and embracing your imperfections and shitty mistakes can be the answer to happiness. Don’t worry about what everyone expects of you. Make mistakes, bounce back, and continue being your own kick-ass self.  

How Not to Be a Dick: An Everyday Etiquette Guide by Meghan Doherty

An ‘etiquette guide’ does not sound funny or remotely fun to read. However, this is different. It’s basically a how-to-not-be-a-dick guide in a world inevitably filled with dicks. It offers practical tips for navigating 21st-century social situations through comedy and 1940’s retro-style illustrations. You know when the first line of the book is “throughout history, there have been dicks”, you’re in for a good laugh and real-talk advice. 

 

Furiously Happy: A Funny Book about Horrible Things by Jenny Lawson

Lawson uses disjointed, blog-like points to explain how to cling onto your mental stability by your fingernails. Her no-nonsense collection of confused thoughts explores her own personal battle with mental illness. Her advice is to take those “fine” moments and make them “amazing” because they are the moments that we take into battle to fight depression. She says to find joy in being outrageous because craziness isn’t all that bad.

Have you read one of these wonders of wisdom? If so we would love to hear about it! Take a pic of your fave Anti-Self Help and use #ponderingsbook. 

Join our other 22,000+ Ponderers and discover the real stories and voices of us. Subscribe today and get your Free Copy.

 

 

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Independent Media is critical; it means no large media giant is pulling our strings or dictating what we write. Ponderings provides an alternative to networked media, producing stories about issues of social justice and humanity; that might not otherwise be told. Some you will need no introduction and some you will be uplifted to find out about and be inspired by. This year, in particular, our lineup is going to delight and surprise you.

 

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From Devastation to Transformation- One Woman’s Journey

From Devastation to Transformation- One Woman’s Journey

Pondeirngs Magazine From Devastation Article Julia Lorent

by Jasmine Pedretti

The absolute devastation of losing two loved ones created a ripple in Julia Lorent’s life that would change its course forever.

 

Julia’s outlook on life changed forever after her mother and fiance passed away due to smoking related illness. Anyone that has experienced the crippling anguish from losing a loved one, knows how close it can come to derailing your life. Instead of letting her grief beat her, Julia decided to channel it into helping others fight their own demons. For the next 2 decades she would leave no stone unturned to find answers in helping people with addiction, with no judgement. For the judgement of others was too harsh a force to be reckoned with. What resulted was a successful career and it continues to grow. 

Julia Lorent Ponderings Magazine

This Melbournite has dedicated every ounce of her energy to helping others live their best life.

 

Julia is passionate about empowering people to overcome limiting beliefs. This transformative therapist helps patients quit smoking, lose weight, gain control of their eating habits and become self-confident. Essentially, she gives people trapped in an endless cycle of addiction, a chance for a longer, fruitful life by equipping people with the tools to regain control of their health. What drives Julia is the need to prevent others from experiencing the same pain of loss she suffered when losing her mother and partner. Every time Julia helps someone break an addiction and transform their lives, she saves their death from devastating the lives of loved ones.

Ponderings Magazine Leaderboard Julia Lorent Article

Her courage, outstanding achievements and noble qualities has gained Julia the respect as a notable transformational therapist.

 

From Devastation to Transformation Julia LorentShe is highly regarded all over the world and has been invited to speak at an array of different keynote presentations.

Most notably, Julia has been asked to speak at one of Australia’s newest and exciting transformative events, Hypnobiz. 14th – 15th of March 2020 will see hundreds of the world’s top practitioners come together in one room. The biggest names in the industry have been asked to speak. The celebrated hypnosis conference brings together hundreds of top practitioners to share their best advice and tips for success. Mental health and family therapy professionals that come will learn the latest trends and ways to improve their skills, business and overall net worth. It’s also an excellent opportunity for attendees from diverse backgrounds, to potentially partner together. Hynobiz Australia is the most international and progressive hypnosis conference in the world.

Ponderings Magazine Gift Picks of the Month

Looking at Julia’s extensive list of qualifications, it’s no wonder Julia was invited to be part of Hynobiz.

She is the founder and principal practitioner for Melbourne Quit Smoking Clinic, Melbourne Clinic of Hypnotherapy, and The Savvy Changemaker.

She has also been making waves academically. Due to her illustrious reputation, Julia recognizes that she has a platform to bring awareness to matters that demand attention. Her most notable work includes a recent whitepaper that uncovered shocking numbers of harassment towards women in the workplace. The survey highlighted the profound emotional implications this has on women’s mental health and physical safety. Julia is also causing a buzz in the academic world with her belief that addiction is pain. A claim that is grounded on a lifetime of academic investigation and dedication. This new way of looking at addiction could help change the future of addiction diagnosis forever.

 
To get in touch with Julia, contact her on + 61 412 810 078 or email julia@thesavvychangemaker.com

Visit her site for more information about her services.

 

 

One Brave Mother and 65 Roses

We spoke to the wonderful Jennifer Jury who runs the annual Charity Ladies Lunch Event on the 31st...

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Australia’s Youngest Politician is Changing the Future for Local Shops

Australia’s Youngest Politician is Changing the Future for Local Shops

Robert Schmitz Local Shops The start-up sensation taking the future by storm all in the name of supporting local shopping. Look out Amazing here comes the Millenial of the year.

 Anyone can have a good idea…

But making it happen takes a special kind of person. Robert Schmitz is one of these people. This 27-year old boy from the bush may just be Australia’s new Mark Zuckerberg. He has created a website that is set to change the future for local shops and aims to retain human experience in a world that seeks convenience.

Inspiring and highly intelligent, Ponderings had to intverview him. My Local Shopsnot only presents local stores on their own online shopping platform, but the quirky high end market atmosphere is disruptive and revolutionary. If he is to have his way, the haunting sound of small town shop closing will be a thing of the past. Tech + Heart has arrived in Australia and the gutsy move has us truly captivated.

Retail industry futurist, Doug Stephens, predicts that within 15 years, e-commerce will overtake conventional retail sales.

The more we buy online the closer shops come to extinction.

A study conducted by Roy Morgan found that Australians spent a whopping $41.3 billion on online shopping last year.  This is a major concern. Not only are local shops vital for employment and our cities economies. Real-life-shopping is a meditative, social, human experience that awakens the senses. You get to feel the plush pillow, smell the candle, listen to the quality of sound playing through the Harvey Norman headphones. You’re actually required to interact with people! Buying off Amazon is convenient but doesn’t support the local shops that need it.

Schmitz has created the website with the latest tech and algorithms- allowing you to enjoy the time-saving convenience of shopping from the comfort of your home, while still supporting local shops and getting to know your community.

Ponderings Online Magazine Tanya Breen Art Creative

At just 21 years old you became the youngest councillor in Australian politics. What was your motivation behind this?

I thought, instead of moving from my country town, Whyalla, I would find a way to make a positive change myself so that I didn’t have to move.

Now you’ve left politics to pursue My Local Shops; a platform that allows customers to browse and purchase products from stores in their location. How does it work?

The website allows you to type in your location. Then any store in that region that is on My Local Shops will appear with all the stock they currently have in store. This way, if you need something that day, you can find what store has the product you want and order it online. Then you can head straight to the store and pick it up that day, rather than waiting days to receive it.

What are the benefits of using My Local Shops?

For me, it’s a lot of seeing and getting a taste for what’s out there before even leaving your doorstep. Amazon and all these other platforms are convenient, but they’re just not supporting local stores, and they are the ones that need it the most. Browsing on My Local Shops also means you might come across a shop you didn’t know existed.

 

When did you get the idea?

The idea really came together last June and was launched in January, so it’s all happened really fast.

Who can access My Local Shops?

It’s currently being trialled in Whyalla. However, even though it’s only meant to be accessible there, we’ve already had someone purchase a 3.75L cactus drink dispenser from QLD. Due to a glitch in the system, a woman has been able to click on the direct link to My Local Shops and purchase the product from Whyalla, while living in QLD. So now she’s waiting in QLD to have this fantastic party with her cactus dispenser!

What will be the next step?

Well, I was born and bred in Whyalla, so naturally, I wanted it to start there, but it isn’t a hustling bustling shopping community. The Geelong region is geographically ideal with the surf coast and Bellarine Peninsula so close. Ideally, it will expand nationwide, but this comes down to local retailers. E-commerce giants are going to continue to grow and take over bridge and water retail. If retailers accept that they need to be online, we can work together and stop this from happening. How big it gets will also depend on consumers. There needs to be a collective thought that supporting local shops will directly affect your life and your children’s future. It’s not just a ripple in a pond if we all do it!

Leaderboard Ponderings Australia

What is your advice to anyone with an idea?

Don’t procrastinate, action it immediately! Boil it down to its simplest, raw, form, and then make it happen. You’ll never be proud of your very first addition, there’ll always be changes to be made, but I would try a little less for perfection, and more for action to begin with.

About Robert:

Robert Schmitz works with the community anyway he can. He was elected to the City Council of his hometown Whyalla at just 21 years old, making him the youngest Australian councillor ever. 5 years later, the talented tradie, left politics to pursue his next endeavour, e-commerce website My Local Shops.

One Brave Mother And 65 Roses, Geelong Social Media, Geelong Digital Media, Cystic Fibrosis

One Brave Mother and 65 Roses

We spoke to the wonderful Jennifer Jury who runs the annual Charity Ladies Lunch Event on the 31st of May (2019) for Cystic Fibrosis at the RACV City Club in Bourke St Melbourne. Tell us about the luncheon and your part in it ​Charity & Fun (aka Jan Dalton, Bee...
The World's Most Influential Young People Inspiring the way for 2019 by Montanna Macdonald for Ponderings Magazine

The World’s Most Influential Young People Inspiring The Way For 2019

The world is grueling, inspiring and unequivocally extraordinary in all its facets. It is important not to lose sight of what the world of other people just like you, are doing to make a change. It's important to see beyond the norms and expectations on what society...

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