random acts of writing

The Good, The Grim, and The Wild: Reaping & Making at the Autumn Equinox

The Good, The Grim, and The Wild: Reaping & Making at the Autumn Equinox

Welcome, sacred and soulful time. Embrace us, holy moment of temperance. Twist us, dark and light. Bury us wholly beneath shadow and soul. Tear us in two between what was and what will be. We are eager to atone. We are prepared to reconcile and […]

about the new site

about the new site

Hello, friends! If you’ve been visiting The Untamed Alchemist on the web for some time and just returned, you’ve doubtless noticed a few changes… The site has been updated to offer a more user-friendly experience, improved functionality, and new features. (Helloooo, printable recipes!) Many of […]

making time for maker’s day

making time for maker’s day

I’m a big fan of Stuff That Works. Stuff That Works is the stuff that we all do to make our lives easier, better, more lovely, less challenging. I enjoy lots of Stuff That Works: aromatic baths for stress, walks in nature to clear my […]

full disclosure: i’ve got nothin’ but love

full disclosure: i’ve got nothin’ but love

After the interwebnet put my words on the wind and made a wee blog post go more than a little viral in 2015, an associate commented that it must be exciting to be making money off of this blog thanks to all the new “views.” […]

emerging essences: energetics of early spring blooms

emerging essences: energetics of early spring blooms

Over the next few weeks, many gardens will be dotted with the emergence of the earliest spring blooms, most notably many perennial bulbs. On our farm in the Idaho panhandle , we can expect to see a number of flowers, from hyacinth and crocus to narcissus and daffodils, emerging with fresh […]

titles, and credentials, and consumer confusion…oh my!

titles, and credentials, and consumer confusion…oh my!

Insight into titles and credentials in aromatherapy from Lora Cantele, author of The Complete Aromatherapy & Essential Oils Handbook for Everyday Wellness and editor/publisher of the International Journal of Professional Holistic Aromatherapists (IJPHA), If you aren’t already subscribed to the IJPHA, I encourage you to […]

the big, burning question, part ii: how I choose my essential oil suppliers

the big, burning question, part ii: how I choose my essential oil suppliers

The big, burning question I so often get is, “what brand of essential oils do you recommend?” The first part of my response to the question, focused on the question itself, can be found in part i of this series here. In this post you’ll find part ii of […]

so, how DO I use essential oils?

so, how DO I use essential oils?

While I don’t use essential oils all day, every day, in ALL the things, I do use them often, in many ways, and in many things — I love essential oils. I also love hydrolats, essential waters, absolutes, CO² extracts, and carrier oils. (And herbs. […]

the big, burning question, answered (sort of), part i of iii

the big, burning question, answered (sort of), part i of iii

Of all of the questions I’m asked as an aromatherapist, the question about “which brand” of essential oils I recommend is BY FAR the most commonly posed — it’s also one of the most problematic and troublesome questions to answer. It’s especially precarious to provide a […]

put essential oils in ALL the things! (yeah, NO.)

put essential oils in ALL the things! (yeah, NO.)

So, this is me sitting in my house on a quiet Sunday morning. The sun is casting wide beams of warmth and light across my living room and my dogs are blissfully ensconced, each on a dog bed in their own respective beam, at various places on […]

clearing, purifying, and cleaning at imbolc

clearing, purifying, and cleaning at imbolc

While some people will be watching a groundhog on February 2nd, many pagans will be preparing to celebrate the waning winter and the imminent return of spring at Imbolc, also known as Candlemas or Brigid’s Feast. Imbolc raises our energy in anticipation of spring and celebrates […]

lots of little big things

lots of little big things

It’s dark by 4 PM and the paths are crisp and frozen. Seasonal creeks are still and the lake rests quietly at an edge deep from its summer banks. The garden sleeps like a bear, quietly holding seeds and promise for next year under a […]

blood moon body butter

blood moon body butter

Sister moon, so bright and high Casting shadows here and nigh Swallowed swift in shadow burning Red with blood and boiling yearning. Fear of change and angst resurface Struggling blind to grasp my purpose Thrashing forth and back by years Standing still in age old fears. Mystic quiet […]

a few of my favorite things right now

a few of my favorite things right now

There’s LOTS to love in the world of aromatherapy and herbalism. While I always have “favorites”, I find myself turning to new essential oils at different times depending upon both my mood and my clients’ needs, new books turn up that capture my attention and “old” […]

aromatic vignettes: storytelling, aromatherapy, and transformation

aromatic vignettes: storytelling, aromatherapy, and transformation

first, about “storytelling” One of the core tenets at the heart of Untamed Alchemy holds that we have responsibility for the quality of our lives. The philosophy emphasizes that we are all creators who work with seemingly mundane ingredients in everyday circumstances to yield something wholly new that […]

what’s in a name? who’s who and what’s what in aromatherapy titles and acronyms

what’s in a name? who’s who and what’s what in aromatherapy titles and acronyms

NOTE: The post that appeared here is being vetted with industry experts, membership organizations, and colleagues as it’s clear now that there were a number of clarifications needed, corrections required, and inadvertent omissions in the original post. The post will be back when the kind souls […]



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