The first weekend of the new year and we woke up to a beautiful, heavy fog.Foggy mornings seem to give you more of a chance to slow down without feeling a sense of time going by. At least they do for me. My family spends a lot of time meandering the trails near our house. On this morning, my son was looking for mushrooms and I was busy looking at the remnant grass and seed heads of summer and fall in the meadows. The decaying blackberry canes and the last of the rose hips rotting and withering. I closed my eyes and thought of other seasons here, the flush of wild roses in the spring flouncing and adorning the sides of the path. The meadows lit up with explosions of colorful confetti when the mustard, wild radish and lupines are in bloom. The sweetness of the blackberries ripening in the summer heat. Listening to the birds, always busy, chattering away making nests or screeching as they swoop to snatch a mouse.
As a natural blonde, my hair has gotten darker over the years. I decided to make a couple of chamomile hair rinses to give it extra shine and lighten it up a bit naturally. Chamomile (or camomile) has anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial and antioxidant properties which can strengthen hair, help fight dandruff, and promote hair growth. Adding it to your bath or placing cooled teabags onto your skin can help anything from burns to cuts to dark circles under your eyes.
In the summer you can use wild chamomile or flowers from your garden but, its the middle of winter, so I used loose dried flowers and store-bought tea bags.
Here, I used four tea bags and filled the jar with boiling water.
For the loose dried flowers I poured boiling water over them in a pyrex bowl. I just used what was already in my cupboard, about 1/4 cup flowers to about 3 cups water.
I let them steep about two hours. You could do it longer or shorter and still benefit.
Strain the loose flowers into another bowl (don't pour the liquid out).
I poured the loose flowers through a fine-mesh sieve so there where still particles floating around. I'm going to use it quickly so I didn't mind. You could also use cheese cloth if you didn't want any bits floating about.
I let it cool completely then labeled it for the fridge. After washing and rinsing your hair, pour the cool chamomile rinse over your hair, leaving it in as your hair dries. It will continue to lighten as it is left on and you will see results with regular rinses.
Chamomile is one of my favorite flowers, it self seeds very easily and is a nice addition to any herb or floral garden. It also attracts honey bees and smells wonderful. In Kate Greenaway's Language of Flowers, chamomile means "energy in adversity".