Monday, January 17, 2011

2011 Herbal Ally Challenge / Dandelion

Kristine over at ( Dancing in a Field of Tansy ) has challenged her readers to join her in an herbal study of 1 plant or ally this year. If you're interested , you can read about it here ( ). Our first challenge was to create a journal cover. I used a regular composition book , gessoed the cover , did my favorite toilet paper technique on the background to add texture. I then added a piece of corrugated cardboard , a square of burlap and a Dandelion atc I created a few years ago. I'm not finished with the cover , but thought I would show it anyway. I chose Dandelion as my herbal ally ..................
Dandelion is a well known herb , with many useful benefits. My first experience with Dandelion started in 2006 when my youngest daughter was pregnant , she was diagnosed with a rare liver disease ( Intrahepatic cholestasis of pregnancy ) that only surfaces when you're pregnant. The liver stops functioning properly , causing bile to build up and poison the body. It causes intense itching over the body from head to toe and can cause the baby to be stillborn. I started researching the itching and knew what we were dealing with before the test came back to confirm it. As I researched , Dandelion kept popping up in the information as a way to help get the bile acids back to normal levels. We talked to her CNP about what I had found on the internet about Dandelion , she had studied herbal medicine before coming a CNP and told us , she couldn't recommend Dandelion , but it was a safe herb to use during pregnancy and it wouldn't hurt a thing if we decided to use it. Since I didn't know much about wild herbs , I headed to the GNC store to buy Dandelion. The ICP started around the end of the 8th month , I think she took the Dandelion about a week before she started leaking fluid and they had to induce labor , which was a Blessing. They usually induce labor early to avoid the baby being stillborn. I'm not sure if the dandelion had time to reduce the bile acids , but it did make us feel better to be doing something. My grandson was born about a month early and he was healthy. My daughter's liver went back to functioning normally after he was born.
The latest walk I've had with dandelion came about a 1 1/2 ago , I was having digestive problems and began researching herbal ways to deal with it. Once again Dandelion reared it's beautiful head. I dug the roots that Fall and made a tincture , started taking the tincture daily. Dandelion helped with my digestive problems and apparently boosted my immune system. I've haven't had a cold , flu or been sick since I started using the dandelion tincture. It's been amazing , since I take care of my Grands while their parents work and I'm constantly wiping noses and dealing with sick kids. Last summer I cooked Dandelion blossoms for the first time , they were delicious. I can't wait for the Dandelion to bloom this Spring. I'm looking forward to cooking and learning more about Dandelion.

~ Dandelion Blessings ~


Kiki aka Victoria said...

Beautiful post..and super lovely art..I love dandelions!..loved it as a child and still do..and it is such a powerful and amazing plant on so many levels..a wonderful messenger of nature!
Thanks for sharing this lovely spotlight!

Ashley said...

That's great and nice.

Weight Management

AkasaWolfSong said...

Oh My Goodness! I didn't know you had this blog! I'm so happy to have found it....You are a wealth of info JoyceAnn! Woo Hoo!

Walkin' away doing the Happy Dance!

I love Dandelions! And I love your bookcover...


Flassie's Fil'a said...

Lovely Cover!!

This looks like a fun
learning experiance.

I finally learned out to
sew pages together. Just
needing either to make a
book page press or learn
techniques to sew the pages
onto the cover of the book.

It's amazing all that dandelion
can do for you. Not only can it
be used for food, it is medicinal

I try to educate people about it
and to stop spreading poison on
their lawns to kill it.

I've had family members say they
are not going to eat dandelion. So
funny when they buy those prepackaged salads that have it in it. lol! One said they were not going to eat weeds. lol! What they might not know is there are other plants that they eat that are in those prepackaged salads that were wild plants considered weeds. So it just cracks me up to hear them say they aren't going to eat weeds.

God Bless You and Yours!!!

Flassie's Fil'a said...

I made some spelling errors
but you can figure out I
think what I mean. I even
wrote the wrong word in a

Out instead of how.

Experiance instead of experience.

Might be more but I'm sure you can
figure it out. lol!

Lib said...

Love this post! So much info.THANKS!!!!!!
I enjoyed making dandelion jelly .
Late fall we had a few blooms, Little Shadow saw them picked them and ask can we make jelly. lol
Love your Journal cover!

Anonymous said...

Fascinating. I love herbs and want to learn more about them. I just can't seem to find time to do everything I want.


tansy said...

beautiful cover joyceann! what is the tp technique, do you just apply it to the wet gesso? i love the look it creates and i love how the yellow reflects the color of dandelion's flowers.

great ally choice too. i look forward to hearing more about your journey.

JoyceAnn said...

Hi Victoria ~ It's wonderful to hear from you. I'll be visiting your blog soon.

Hi Ashley ~ Thanks !

Hi Wolfsong ~ Glad you found my " Herbal Spirits " blog. I hope to have it printed as a book for my daughter's in the future.

Hi Flassie ~ Yep , most people consider it a weed , know matter what you tell them.

Hi Lib ~ It's wonderful that you're passing on your herbal knowledge to Little Shadow.

Hi Teresa ~ I like this challenge because you focus on one herb for a whole year , it's not so overwhelming.

Hi Kristine ~ I'm so thankful you're doing this challenge , I think I'll learn so much more about Dandelion by focusing on it for a year.
The tp technique is easy , I let the gesso dry a little bit , put a little paint on a tray or plate and use wads of tp to dab the paint on. Soon the tp will become saturated with paint and small bits will be left behind creating a wonderful textured look.

~ Happy Herbal Blessings to All ~

Just another Village Wise Woman said...

Just beautiful! Earthy like your lovely friend dandelion! I am excited to get started on mine! Hooray!

Comfrey Cottages said...

Hi, Joyce Ann:) So happy you are following dandelion this year. The family stories you shared about your experiences with Dandelion are just wonderful. I thank you! Delighted you are following Dandelion this year. It is one of the 21 herbs I am focusing on this year, so I will love reading all you share! herbal and honey hugs to you xx oh and your cover rocks! I adore it:)