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  • thehazelwitch

happiest mabon my friends!


For many folks, myself included, we are coming up on our favourite time of year. Personally, I look forward to autumn & winter all year round, and so when it arrived I am all too ready to dive into the magic! But I realize that this is not a universal experience - in fact for a large number of people, the arrival of the autumn equinox carries a heaviness and loneliness with it.


So let me preface this by saying, if you feel like the shorter days and darker skies make you sad and anxious - you are absolutely not alone. These feelings are totally real and valid, and tapping into the magic of the season is not going to instantly make you feel less bummed out. Instead, try to consider the beauty in reframing this dark time of the year as a reason to cozy up, commit to your comfort and well being, and do some introspection. It also helps me to create a list of things to do during the season to celebrate and fully be present.



A slow lived autumn day is truly what dreams are made of. If you struggle to find inspiration for autumnal activities, look no further. This is by no means an exhaustive list, but it is what I'll be doing this season and I hope some of these activities resonate with you.


- watch the leaves turn. pick a tree in your neighbourhood to check in on every few days, watching as the leaves slowly change to warmer colours.

- eat seasonally. our bodies love to be in tune with the seasons, and so we should make an effort (where possible) to nourish ourselves with the natural foods that come into season during this time. Hearty potatoes, squash, apples and pears will all make a beautiful addition to your meals.

- re-read an old favourite. times are unpredictable right now, and there is certainly a comfort in reading a book that you already know the ending to.

- create a cozy corner. lay down some blankets and pillows and snuggle up. light a candle. turn off your phone. just be.

- adopt some pumpkins and gourds. we often forget the beauty of what autumn offers. I think we should buy pumpkins for our home just as we would buy flowers for our homes in the spring time.

- go apple picking. this might not be possible where you live, so look into alternatives such as farmers markets, independent farm stands, and other fruits and vegetables that are local to you.

-take a nature walk. bundle up to keep warm as you traipse through a wooded trail or mountain path. pay attention to what you see.

-come home from your chilly walk and get to work making a warm spiced beverage (hint hint, I'm partial to apple cider... recipe below).

- go to bed feeling fulfilled. reach out to friends and tell them how much you love to know them. notice the way the rain fogs up your bedroom window. cuddle in. repeat.






Easy & Pretty Much Foolproof Apple Cider








INGREDIENTS:

- 3 red apples

- 3 green apples

- 1-2 oranges (depending on how tart you want it!)

- 4-5 cinnamon sticks

- 1 tablespoon of cloves

- 1 teaspoon allspice

- 1 teaspoon nutmeg

- any sweetener you like! (I usually don't add any, but have heard that maple syrup is great!)





INSTRUCTIONS:


- place all the ingredients in a large pot, adding enough water to cover them.

- let simmer for 4-5 hours. once simmering is done, mash the apples and oranges to release the final flavours!

- strain through a sieve or cheesecloth, and enjoy!








wishing you warm and joyful days,


x

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hello, sweet friends - long time no blog post! As I'm sure many of you have as well, I've. been hiding out in my home and trying to lean into joy and comfort during the current pandemic situation - which has led to a lot of procrastination in terms of blog posts. I have a list as long as I am tall that details all the blog posts I want to do... heres hoping my motivation is here to stay and I continue to post!

Today's blog post is a bit less centred on how I live my life, and focuses more on how I run my business. More specifically, how I employ an ethical framework and root my business in sustainability, care for the earth, and care for other humans - whilst still sourcing and offering things that are extracted from the environment.


A little background of my crystal shop/business, I began The Hazel Witch in 2019 - and have since grown to my own website, regularly broadcasted live sales, and quite frankly more customers than I would have thought possible. The keystone of my business is a focus on ETHICAL sourcing - which may not seem like a huge deal, but is incredibly challenging in a world where there are so many readily available unethical sources for crystals and minerals.






The sad truth is, many folks prefer to get their "healing crystals" from blatantly harmful sources. A quick search on Amazon or Wish.com will show you that it is not only possible, but easy to access dirt cheap crystals. The issue arises when we look into where these crystals are coming from, and why they are so cheap.






The issues with unethical crystal mining are multifaceted - not only are human beings harmed in the process, but countless animals and portions of our precious environment are also sacrificed. A large number of minerals are sourced from poor countries, where people are working in environments with little regulation of working conditions. Furthermore, many extraction efforts are headed by POC, who are further exploited and unfairly compensated for the dangerous work they do.





On the environmental side, large scale mining operations monopolize giant portions of land in some areas, which often displaces people who live there, and destroys animal habitats. These operations also often make use of machinery and chemicals that let off harmful fumes and further damage our already precarious environment.


Not only is mining a concern, but production of crystals is also often unethical. Those working in factories where crystals are treated, polished, and shaped are often exploited and working under unfair conditions. Many workers are not supplied adequate safety equipment, and therefore become ill or injured in their line of work.


This is where ethical mining and producing comes in to save the day (or at least significantly lessen the harm done by the mineral industry). Ethically sourced crystals come from SMALLER SCALE operations that are MORE regulated, where workers are FAIRLY COMPENSATED, and kept SAFE by being provided with safety gear, and the freedom to refuse work if they feel unsafe.. The extraction takes place in a manner that allows the environment to RECOVER so that animals and people are not displaced, and items are produced and polished on a SMALL scale, often BY HAND, which reduces the detrimental effects to the atmosphere.


As you can guess, the issue of ethical crystals isn't quite as straight forward as it might seem. Many people and business owners prioritize profit over ethics - and because ethical crystals come at a higher price (due to the fact that miners are paid), many business owners and customers aren't willing to pay more.


This isn't meant to be shady, nor is it meant to demonize those who own/have owned crystals from an unethical source. Rather, this is an invitation to learn, and be better. Because what's the point of a healing crystal if you had to harm someone to get it?









I implore you to think critically of your consumption of crystals and minerals. Ask your favourite shops what they can tell you about the working conditions of their suppliers. If they can't tell you anything, or they don't want to - find another favourite shop. There are a growing number of sustainable mineral shops and excuses to buy unethical crystals are wearing thin. Lets all be better.


all love,


Imogen









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  • thehazelwitch

Things have gone... upside down.


In what feels like a matter of days, our daily lives have completely flipped and we are dealing with a worldwide health crisis. I don't know about you, but I never thought I would experience something like this in my lifetime. Thankfully, though, we have some really awesome resources and workers to help us get through this. But lets talk about how to cope when things go upside down like this - and more specifically, how there has never been a better time to start your slow living journey.



I made a lot of lists when 2020 started, and one of them was a really long & comprehensive list of intentions for myself, my relationships, and my business in the coming year.I try not to make New Years resolutions, and instead I focus on guiding myself softly in the direction of some loose goals. That said, this year I set a LOT of goals. Like, more than ever before. As this was now my second year of business, my excitement about levelling up and beating my old sales records and so on was in full effect. January was awesome, I did so much for myself and I crossed a lot off my list. February was the same.


And then March came, and it became pretty darn clear that I wouldn't be able to keep quite the same momentum with my goal-meeting while I was watching the world around me alter itself to address a global crisis. And that was heart breaking on so many levels. I was saddened that I wouldn't *smash* my goals like I had intended, but more so I was saddened about the state of the world, and then confused with myself for feeling upset about such trivial things as my own business when all this was going on.


But heres the thing, we are all mourning something right now. Covid-19 has changed things, cancelled events, forced us to reprioritize - and it is NOT easy. It hurts, and it feels unfair and absolutely hopeless at times. But it is possible to move through this period with grace.




now is a time to let go. mourn the old goals, make new ones.


This is where slow living comes in - and in a BIG way. This pandemic is giving us all a crash course in why slow living can save us from ourselves. Things are closed, work is slow, and we have pretty much no choice but to adopt the slow lifestyle - or we're going to go crazy.


I know that things are horrifying, I know that some of us are having an easier time than others. I know that living slowly doesn't change the way that scary news is coming towards us at an alarming rate. BUT, wouldn't it be nice if we could all make things a bit more manageable just by choosing to slow down?


And we can. There are very few things we can control right now - but we CAN control how we react to the situation. And I'm choosing to spend a bit more time nurturing my soul, drinking tea, moving slowly and fluidly through the day. I hope you can join me.


all love


imogen



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