More Incense

30 03 2008

As so many people enjoy talking about incense and other smelly stuff, I will share some more favorite recipes.

Frankincense, Myrrh, Benzoin, Copal, are literally tree-resins, which you can burn in small granules on charcoal blocks. basically any kind of container can be used, they have to be capable of holding very hot coals. It helps a lot if you fill the container with sand.

Here are two small incense burners; the one on the left is Chinese; filled with sand, the one on the right has a metal mesh on which the coal rests.

incense2_small_burners.jpg

The plant on the right is the mint I had to buy after American-Bedu gave us the recipe for Saudi-Champagne. I now use a lot of mint.

You can easily blend your own incenses, remember that once burnt many herbs and stuff smell very differently. According to aroma-therapy smell has a great influence on us. If that is so it makes sense to have different incenses for different purposes. With incense it’s the same as with cooking: as soon as you get used to the idea you start changing the recipes, or make up your own. Usually you want to keep the proportions of dried stuff much smaller than the resins. However, the second recipe turns that rule around, and is yet a very nice one.

The recipes usually use essential oils. Here are some of my ingredients. From right to left: Dragons-blood-resin, Copal, Frankincense, Camphor, (empty, that stuff has just completely disappeared!!!) Sandalwood, more Frankincense, Bezoïn, Myrrh and Storax.

incense2_ingredients.jpg

It is best to grind the ingredients as fine as possible, and dragonsblood for example comes in large chunks, But I usually leave the resins as granules. Here are my two pestles, a course, and a fine one. I am here making the violet dusting powder. (without the violets, but I’m using extra lavender ground very fine)

incense2_making.jpg

As I cannot give the recipes other than tea-spoons and drops and dashes, I’ve photographed the ingredients to give an idea of the proportions.

Sweet Incense

incense2_sweet_incense1.jpg

  • three teaspoons of Frankincense
  • one teaspoon of Myrrh
  • one teaspoon of dried rose-petals
  • three drops of amber essential oil

This is a very simple and sweet smelling incense, crush the dried rose-petals into small bits, mix everything together, and add the drops of amber. Store in a tight lidded box.

Incense for Romance

incense2_romantic1.jpg

From the top, clockwise

  • Three teaspoons of sandalwood
  • one teaspoon cinnamon
  • one teaspoon galangal
  • two teaspoons rosepetals
  • three drops neroli essential oil
  • one teaspoon dragonsblood resin

Crush the rose petals and dragonsblood resin, mix everything together, and add three drops of neroli. It’s such a small vial because it’s so bloody expensive!

This is a very unusual scent, it’s herby, spicy and sweet. Defenitely for the evening. It should get you and your mate’s blood running. Please inform me if it is so!

The proof of the incense is in the smelling! I’ve just tried them, and; lovely! But I think a little goes a long way, so for me these two will last me quite a long time.

incense2_burning_it.jpg

Romantic body-oil

With all these essential oils you can also make yourself some lovely smelling body-oil for after your bath. This one is for women, it makes you even more attractive, and is supposed to work as a magnet for men, so you might want to be careful when to use it!!! As a base you can use either Jojoba or almond oil. You can make it on friday (venus’s day) But then I just made it on a Sunday, and it still smells lovely. 🙂 With recipes for scents, I think you should look at the recipe, but blend until it seems right to you! For use as a perfume, use just a tiny bit of base-oil, and then add the essential oils.

Blending fragances is an aquired art, and takes a keen sense of smell, but it gets easier with practise.

incense2_oil1.jpg

  • Jasmine
  • Red rose
  • one drop of lavender (not more)
  • drop of musk
  • and Ylang-ylang. be very careful with the Ylang-ylang, while it is lovely in a blend, too much smells (strangely) like cheap soap.

For men!

Very earthy and passionate, be prepared for anything! And according to my book it also works as an aphrodisiac with amazing results! Hum, if anybody actually is going to make this, and gets these amazing results, I would love to get a report of it!!!

Start with a base of Musk, and Patchouli. Add cinnamon, carnation and vanilla. Blend and add until the scent is right for you.

incense2_flesjes.jpg

Next time I will post a list of what different scents are supposed to do, and share some more recipes.

Advertisements




Polygamy and Arabs

30 03 2008

Yes, visitors! I have laid low with very boring posts for a looong time. Time for some inflammatory stuff! If anybody is already upset by the title, I want to make it clear that all Fatwa’s should be issued at the evil Iranian sister (SS) who thought it up, and ordered me to post it!

So, polygamy, and Arabs

”Polygamy” is when serious relationships consist of more than two individuals, and the ”Arabs” are my Arabs

I freely admit; I am prejudiced here, in my opinion:

Humans -> Stupid <~~~> Horses -> Clever

So what happens if: two Arab blokes, have to share: one Nordic Goddess?

If they were human, they would constantely complain and nag, and be a general nuisance to their surroundings, and would eventually kill each other. For some reason men are just só jealous! They can’t just step aside, and let the other co-partner have some quality time. Even when they should know they get what is their due, they still think they should get more. Selfish, and greedy, that’s what they are!

2gentlemen_en_ik3.jpg

As in this case the Arab blokes are Rabhar and The Tarq, they get on fairly well, are patiently awaiting their time for grooming and are pleased with the excellent meals and cleaning services provided. When I’m not looking they may give each other a little nip, no blood spilled though. And they would certainly never nag at the Nordic Goddess. On the contrary: they aim to please, and are always happy to see me, and never bother me with personal stuff. So why fuss? Polygamy can work out fine! Or, in other words: why put up with men?

aafke-145_two_gentlemen.jpg

Two gentlemen being polite:

aafke-1402_gentleman_being_polite.jpg

Can they keep it up?

aafke-1922_gentlemen_tarq_closed-eyes.jpg

NO!

Two gentlemen, nagging!

aafke-1762_gentlemen_nagging3.jpg

aafke-1772_gentlemen_nagging1.jpg

aafke-1782_gentlemen_nagging2.jpg

I’m just adding these because they both look so cute

aafke-1582_gentlemen_being_polite2.jpg

aafke-1622_gentlemen_and_me3klein.jpg

Photographs, except the first, © http://www.Hippologic.nl





Bicycles

28 03 2008

Well, just to let you know: I have got two new bicycles, after my really good one was stolen.

A shopping bike, a 60th bike, they are a lot tougher then the ones you buy now. Finally finished pimping it!. Big pannier-bags for market-shopping, also really good for keeping long black coats out of the wheels. The basket comes off, and is really handy; you can take it into the shops. Flowers on your bike are the big fashion right now in Holland.

bike_shopping.jpg

And a recumbent bike to go to visit The Tarq. I have just gotten the go ahead of my physiotherapist to start using it! I’ve had it for a couple of weeks now, but was not allowed to try it yet. And I’m still not allowed to do the whole 17 km to the horses. He doesn’t want me to call him to resque me when I’m stuck somewhere in the fields! It’s also second-hand, new ones are very expensive! It’s a Flevo fifty-fifty. This was a state of the art recumbent when it came out: the latest models are still very much alike. It has a low handle-bar, most people prefer the high ones, which are in front of you. I wanted a low one; that’s also why I got this bike for a good price. 🙂

flevobike-fiftyfifty.jpg





Dinner for two

27 03 2008

Dinner for my two gentlemen. What do they eat?

Well, there is a slight difference in diet: Rabhar gets regular hot dinner: a kind of warm cereal mash, and a special foodsupplement: Glucosamine, chondroitine, and MSM (natural sulfur) This is hopefully making his joints more comfortable. It also works as a painkiller. As he is old he also get a special mineral, and aminoacids, and vitamin supplement for elderly horses.

The Tarq is too fat for the warm dinner but he sometimes gets a small helping also. Tarq eats a special Müsli-mix. As Arabs don’t need any food anyway, it is very important to chose food without sugars and few proteins. I prefer a Müesli because I can see exactely what’s in it. It also has some etherial oils, and smells great. It is of course extra expensive. Rabhar gets helpings of the Müesli too. At the moment The Tarq gets extra herbs to clean his intestines. They are: dried nettle, dried Dandelion and juniperberry-oil and green loam.

Both gentlemen also will have some ”Omega”-oil (the perfect blend of omega 3, 6 and 9 oils) and Icelandic seaweed, and garlic + something-of-which-I-don’t-know-the-english-word. and a small hand of dried Beet-root chips. And carrots. Tarq only a few, Rabhar gets lots, and a carrot-meal every three days.

horse-diet.jpg

And a generous helping of hay twice a day. Tarq also likes to eat the straw in his stable. Actually The Tarq eats virtually anything. Rabhar, being royalty, is a bit more discerning. Rabhar is very keen on his hot meal, and let’s me know it by constantely cheering me on while waiting for me to get it finished. The Tarq is quite sure he’s going to get it and happily munches hay in the mean time. If it does take too long he sticks his head out, and gives a short low yell: ”Bring me the food NOW!!!”

For a snack I have special horse-cookies, with herbs or vanilla flavour. Rabhar likes the vanilla-flavoured ones the best. Sometimes they get dates. Or sliced apples. Never ever sugar!!!!





Lofter sent me a little something

26 03 2008

So, Lofter was going to send me something little, allright, I thought a nice postcard or something. Or a bottle of the local beer. Or a Mc Doubtful hamburger. (as we know it wouldn’t go off on the long journey) Or some brown foundation garment. Or a book on how to train your attack-cat.

No! It just arrived and is this Supercallifragillisticexpealidocious miniature saddle!

A bit too small for The Tarq, but I know who does fit it!!!!

It’s perfect in all details: double hanging-D rigging, saddlestrings, leather-covered stirrups, tiny string-cincha, flank-cincha, latigos, even the hobblestraps above the stirrups! Perfect!!! Even it’s construction is real handmade saddler-stuff!!! I can use it when I give clinics on saddles, but cannot take all the big stuff!.

Thank you, thank you, thank you!!!!! LOFTER!!!!

zora_saddled_up3.jpg

But Lofter, this is not really a little something!

The Tarq under the new saddle.

mini_saddle2.jpg

I don’t know, I think it’s not really a perfect fit. I think the back of the saddle is coming up a bit.

mini_saddle1.jpg





Incense

25 03 2008

I love incense. As everybody seems to be posting on oud or incense these days, I’m not going to be left behind! 🙂 I hate smoking, but, And this is a secret! Some very few people are allowed to smoke a cigarette in my house, and the best way to get rid of the smell is to whip out my incense burner. I also like to wave my hair above it, after washing it. I like the smell of incense better than that of my hair products. It is also much better than the smell of damp dog!

So: for Marahm: this is my incense burner!

incense-burner.jpg

And here are a few of my incenses and ingredients, There is sandalwood, myrrh, francincense, dragonsblood resin, an incense from a south american tree which is lovely, and some mixtures.

incense-boxes.jpg

Recipe for incense

  • 3 parts myrrh
  • 1 part crushed dried rosepetals or saffron. (or less, never do to much dried stuff)
  • a few drops of pine oil
  • a few drops of cedar oil

I also like the oldfashioned ”sachette”, linnen bags filled with lavender and rosemary, and then stuff them in between your clothes and sheets.

You can bring your favorite scent into the workplace by putting a few drops of your favorite oil on a ribbon and tie it around for example a bunch of pencils. or place a small pot pourri jar on your desk.

incense-pot_pourri_box.jpg

Recipe for Pot Pourri

  • 1 cup dried lavender
  • a handful of scented rosepetals or buds
  • dried verbena
  • 2 tablespoons of dried orrisroot
  • 2 drops each of rose, jasmine and lavender essential oils

Violet dusting powder

This is lovely to dust your skin with after a bath. It has a very subtle smell, and makes your skin silky-smooth.

  • 1tablespoon cornflour, or arrowrootpowder
  • 1 teaspoon ground orrisroot
  • 1 teaspoon ground lavender
  • a few fresh violets (officinalis) or fragrant roses

Place all the ingredients in a small tightly lidded cardboard box for a few days until the smells steep together. Then pack them carefully inro a small powder compact with a little swansdown puff. Dust your upper torso after bathing. You can also apply this at the office; to help keep you cool.

incense-powder_boxes.jpg

Sorry male visitors: this is all girl’s stuff.





The Tree of Life

23 03 2008

Today is Easter, the resurrection of Christ. Also: Ostara, a pagan festival of awakening nature and fertility. I find it very cheerful. Especially as there is a lot of chocolate going around in the shape of chocolate eggs. Eggs are also painted and decorated as the Iranians do for Nowrooz.

It’s another festival where some people put trees up: in the case of Easter usually twisted branches in a vase, that will start sprouting leaves in a few days, and the branches are decorated with eggs and hares and birds.

This symbolises the Tree of Life. A universal symbol. The middle eastern image of The Tree of Life, as a simplified tree with two figures, or animals at either side is well-known.

tree-of-life-ur.jpg 

tree-of-life_mesapotamia.jpg

What I hope interests you, my friends is; that this image is very popular in the north of the Netherlands!

Dutch doors have a window above the door, to let in the light. These doorlights are very often decorated with a stylised Tree of Life. The idea is, that every time you come in through the door, you get blessed. Many of these have been removed, and they are still disappearing, which I think is a pity, so I photographed a few for you. These are all from the city of Groningen. Most are made from cast iron.

This is a very elaborate one from the 17th century

tree-of-life-17.jpg

The 18th century had more stylised ones.

tree-of-life-18.jpg

The early nineteenth century’s ones are similar. This one is merged with a ”horn of plenty” grapes and flowers are dripping down.

tree-of-life-19-white-house.jpg

tree-of-life-19-early.jpg

Later on the Tree of Life, became more simplified,

tree-of-life-19.jpg

And this is the most common form to be seen.

tree-of-life-19-dubbel.jpg

And, of course, I have one myself. It is very close to the middle eastern examples like this shell-carving.

tree-of-life-ur-two-goats2.jpg

Only mine is in the kitchen, because I live in a thirties house, with no door-light. There are no trees after 1900. Don’t know why.

tree-of-life-aafke.jpg