Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Winter Harmony- Welcome Jodi Lebrun

The Winter Harmony blog series is our gift to our beautiful community to help inspire and support you to live in harmony with winter. Join us and some amazing guest bloggers M-F during the month of January.
Click here to see all the Winter Harmony posts in one place.

Get your own
Winter Harmony Mandala to bring a little peace and joy to your winter season this year and see what message it has for you.

'Winter is the time for comfort, for good food and warmth, for the touch of a friendly hand and for a talk beside the fire: it is the time for home.'
~Edith Sitwell
As the days get shorter and the nights get darker, I can't help but find myself reaching for a good book and a cup of tea. Rest and relaxation are at the very top of my list of things to do during the long, cold wintry months. They are an essential part of how I live my life all year long but they absolutely encourage me to deeply align with the energy of Winter when I combine them with my love of the herbs, spices and smells of the season.
The joy that I feel when I mix up a new batch of herbal tea or grind together a juicy body scrub is like nothing I can really describe;
I feel grounded and connected to something much larger than myself.
When I choose a piece of ginger to peel and roast or I grate a cinnamon stick into my latest round of bath salts;
I am roasting ginger and grating cinnamon just like my great, great-grandmothers did in their kitchens so many years ago.
Winter gives us the time to look inside ourselves for the answers to the questions that have eluded us during the warm Summer days or the crisp Autumn evenings. Winter wants to help us to re-discover our creativity by forcing us to slow down and think about the things that are important to us.
Winter invites us to heal our minds, bodies and spirits.
I connect with the energy of Winter through my kitchen sadhana (Sanskrit for the practice of meditation in motion). For me, this means that I am extra mindful while in my kitchen, whether I am cooking my family a hearty dinner, pouring a cup of tea or conjuring up my next herbal creation, I am present. I am in the moment. I am grateful.
I thought it would be fun to share a few of my favourite, tried and true herbal recipes with you. These are the recipes that I find myself wanting to make time and time again...I hope you enjoy making them as much as I do.
Many of the ingredients that I use are right out of my kitchen pantry - cinnamon, vanilla extract, various salts, delicious oils and honey. Others, like the fresh ginger root, have me heading out to the grocery store, which is great as I'm perfectly happy in the house bundled up in my yoga pants and fleecy sweatshirts.
I order all of my loose herbs from Mountain Rose Herbs. They are Certified Organic and come straight to my door. I absolutely love them!

Winter 'Relax Me' Tea
1 part Tulsi (Holy Basil)
1 part Lemon Balm leaf
1/4 part Chamomile flower
Gently mix the herbs together. Using 1 tsp. of the mixture per cup of boiling water, let it steep for 10 minutes and then strain.
Cinnamon and Ginger 'Warm Me Up' Bath Salts
3 tbsp. of ground cinnamon
1 tbsp. of ground gingerroot (I grated fresh ginger and then roasted it for 10 minutes - mmm!)
1 cup of Epsom Salts
Mix all 3 ingredients in a bowl until well blended. Transfer this mixture to a glass jar with a tight-fitting lid. Let it sit for a few days so that the flavors can mingle. Add a 1/4 cup of it to your bath water and enjoy!
Friendly warning if you use fresh grated ginger - there will be strands of it in your bath water.
Vanilla and Peppermint 'Nourish Me Gently' Body Scrub
2 cups of fine sea or mineral salts
1/2 cup of sweet almond oil
1/4 melted honey
1 vanilla bean - split and scraped
10 drops of peppermint essential oil
1 tsp. of vanilla extract
A few dashes of ground cinnamon
In a bowl, mix the salt with the oil, vanilla bean insides and the honey. Add the peppermint EO and the vanilla. Make sure to really blend all ingredients - you want it to end up almost chunky. If you find it too oily, add a bit more salt, but not too much, just enough to thicken it up a bit.
Store in a glass jar with a tight-fitting lid to keep it fresh. Gently massage a few tablespoons of the scrub onto the tops of your hands, knees or elbows when you'd like to soften them up. Let it nourish your skin for a few minutes and then rinse it off with warm water. You will be left with soft, yummy-smelling skin!
  I promise you, that by embracing the Winter's wisdom, you will come to enjoy taking extra time for yourself. You will feel rejuvenated, strong and balanced. You will be able to face your days head on and your family will benefit in so many ways. You will also smell great while doing it all!  



Jodi is a Certified Holistic Life Coach, Yoga Instructor and avid self-nurturer who specializes in teaching women and their families how to live actively, seasonally and creatively. Using a combination of Yoga, Ayurvedic Principles and Reiki, she will help you to discover what it means to nurture yourself, and, in turn, how to nurture your family in a more heart-centred way. Website - Balance, Rhythm and Joy Facebook Page - Balance, Rhythm and Joy Etsy Shop - Balance, Rhythm and Joy Twitter -


  1. I will be trying these recipes out. Thanks Jodi!

  2. You're welcome! Thanks for visiting ;0)

  3. Thank you Jodi so much for these wonderful recopies. I'm going to make the ~ Vanilla and Peppermint 'Nourish Me Gently' Body Scrub ~ and give it to my 17 year old daughter. It will help illustrate to her the importance of nourishing her body, mind and spirit in a very tangible and beneficial way.

  4. I needed this reminder to shine the light on the sacredness of the rituals around food preparation. I have acquired a negative habits of thought around having to cook & clean up, so,I appreciate Jodi's post as it reminded me of the yummy opportunities for connection, contemplation & conversation that organically arise around the preparation of food. Thanks for helping me create new food perspectives for 2013!