I hope today is the last blast of winter around here, but while we all wait for warmer temperatures and time in our gardens, we can take a look at The Herb Lover's Spa Book, and maybe use the time indoors to make something special for ourselves or someone else.
The simplicity of the recipes is a plus. Few call for more than three or four ingredients, or as many steps. This makes it easy to personalize and adapt the recipes in any number of ways to suit yourself.
I'll be making the Lavender Heat Pillow (above left) first thing. I have a drug store equivalent which gets daily use, but which doesn't look as pretty or smell as nice. I love the idea of making my own. Rice, lavender buds, and a towel or bit of fabric, and I can have as many as I want for very little money. Just pop into the microwave for a minute to warm it and make it release its soothing fragrance.
There are also body splashes and bath soaks and teas, foot scrubs and hand cream and body oils. But recipes are only about half of the book.
I enjoyed Sue Goetz' thoughtful observations about the spa experience, garden design, defining herbs, and the history of natural cosmetics. There are tips on selecting plants, and a list of 19 favorites with culture and use notes. She has packed a lot into this 8 1/2 x 6 inch, 172 page book—it's herb growing and crafting made relevant for today. And it's pretty, too.
I was given a copy to review if I wanted to, which I did, because I like it and think you will, too.