The Basic Stuff
You're here, which is great! However, there's some basic stuff you may want to check out before you take off in the kitchen and make all kinds of wonderful remedies.
Take a step back from the metric system and you'll find the simpler's method of measuring. This system is based on "parts" and defines the relationship between different herbs in a formula. This is NOT exact science and the "part" is really whatever measurement you desire. For example, 2 parts lemon balm leaf may equal 2 tablespoons or even 2 teaspoons, as long as you follow the same method throughout the recipe.
Tincture dosages and drops
When measuring out a tincture the dosages are typically in dropperful amounts. Each dropperful is made up of a certain amount of drops, which in return is equal to a teaspoon or milliliter value. So to save you the headache of counting out drops, here is a chart to tell you just that.
Dosage for children
If you choose to treat your children with herbal remedies there are some suggested dosage amounts for the varying ages. Herbal remedies tend to be safer and children typically respond well to them, but of course it is up to the parent and what's best for the child. Here are two charts showing suggested amounts.
Double Boiler Setup
A Double boiler is a great way to infuse oils without destroying your delicate herbs and insuring all the herbal properties have been transferred to the oil. They're also quite handy when melting beeswax in oil to make a salve or lip balm. There are a few ways to make your own double boiler, choose the one that works best for you.
Fortunately this can be done in a number of ways, so choose the way that works best for you and your soon to be apothecary.
Place a glass bowl over a saucepan filled with water. Same deal, herbs go in glass bowl and are heated by the steam.
Place a glass measuring cup on top of a canning jar ring inside a saucepan filled with about an inch of water or so. The herbs and oil go inside the glass measuring cup and are headed by the steaming water in the saucepan
Place two saucepans on top of one another. Fill the bottom saucepan with water and the top saucepan with the herbs and oil.
*Please note that when using beeswax the container you choose for the top portion of the double boiler will be exposed to wax. Wax is NOT easy to wash off. I recommend designating a specific container for wax and wiping it clean with a paper towel immediately.
Pouring Lip Balm
Pouring scalding hot oil and wax into a tiny chap stick container can be down right scary. Unless you have one of those fancy lip balm holders, you run the risk of getting wax everywhere, even on yourself. Here is a helpful hint when pouring your very own! Add as many containers as needed. When the lip balm has cooled, wipe any residual wax off container.