Thrive Birth Center Blog

Father’s Day DYI Gifts with Abi of Stinging Nettle Apothecary

Abi Huff is a Mother of 3 beautiful boys aged 4, 2, and 7 months. She and her partner live in the Town of Sonoma with their lovely family. She has been studying herbs since 2004, and is a graduate of The California School of Herbal Studies, Evergreen School of Botanical Medicine, and is currently studying with Aviva Romm. As a practicing herbalist, Abi runs a small apothecary called The Stinging Nettle, located in Sonoma. She has a strong affinity towards supporting women on their journey through motherhood with the use of herbs, self awareness practices, and sisterhood. Abi is also an educator, teaching workshops that help parents to build their own herbal first aid kit, appropriate herbal dosing with children, medicine making, and more. Abi’s postpartum tea and sitz baths are available at Thrive’s Mama Marketplace, and because we believe so much in Abi’s medicine and herbal remedies, we sat down with her to talk about supporting our life partners as they support us. 

Thrive: What’s an “herbal must have” for partners as they head out for adventures with our little ones? FullSizeRender

Abi: I absolutely love Lavender. Lavender essential oil has been called by many ” a first aid kit in a bottle”. Lavender has many amazing properties that include: anti-microbial, anti-viral, and anti-bacterial actions, it is an anti-inflammatory, it is known to help heal sunburns and heat burns, it is amazing on minor scrapes and cuts, and it’s very calming! I like to carry a small 4oz spray bottle filled with distiller water and between 20-40 drops of lavender angustafolia essential oil. You can also use it as a hand sanitizer for the little ones because lavender is quite gentle and one of the few essential oils safe enough to use on babies. It is always a good idea to do a skin test just to make sure no irritation occurs. With all essential oils, especially when used on children, it is safest to use a carrier like oil or water when applied.

Thrive: Often our partners are also awake long nights taking care of babe, and feel the full affect of family life, including the joys but also the stress. What advice do you have for supporting partner’s adrenals? 

Abi: Mamas usually get the bulk of attention, but it is so important that we support and honor their partners. When children arrive, everyone is running on less sleep and generally has more on their plate. Although self care can be a challenge to fold in, it is still clearly necessary and the extra effort has a big payoff. Besides asking for help and reaching out to your community, I recommend folding in a nice adrenal supportive tea or tonic into self care. Adaptogenic herbs support the entire body with big changes by toning and nourishing the nervous system and other organs. Here is one of my favorite recipes for partners; parts are considered equal measurements. IMG_0204

1 part eleuthero
1 part maca
1 part cinnamon chips
1 part cacao nibs
1 part cinnamon
1 part licorice root
1 part pau d’arco
1 to 1/2 parts ginger

This recipe can replace coffee in the morning and will actually encourage true energy!

Thrive: Fantastic! With Father’s Day around the corner, do you have any advice on DYI gifts for the big daddy or partner in your life? 

Abi: Papas/Partners sometimes have a hard time slowing down, and as their partners, we have to really encourage and remind them how important their self care is for the whole family! Here is a fun recipe for a Beard Oil (or aftershave oil). Beard oils not only condition and soften facial hair, but the skin as well. This is one I’ve tried which has worked well for The Man in my life!

1/4 oz organic vegetable glycerine
1/4 oz Argan oil
1/2 oz almond oil
10 drops sandalwood essential oil ( preferably cultivated or Australian)
10 drops frankincense
5 drops vetiver

You can also create your own blend to suit Papas senses! The rule to thumb is 10-12 drops essential oils per oz of carrier, but you can work drop by drop to find the balance you like.

Bottle and add a sweet label!
Directions: Add small amount to hands, rub together and apply to beard or face after shower, enjoy the botanical goodness!