So here I am far away from home during our lock down, and missing the farm as well as my family and people something terrible, and the best I can think of doing is making the most of what I have to work with...
a Few months back, I started working about a 1200km's away from my family farm (that's about 750 miles; or to simplify things - a twelve hour drive through four provinces) this drastic shift came about after drought and a few other set backs forced me to find an alternative source of income to alleviate the financial implications of everything that had happened. It was with a very heavy heart that I ended up packing my bags and moving away after receiving a decent job offer on the other side of the country. And then shortly after that, our lock down came into play.
Lately with all the change going about along with all the uncertainty and the pressure that goes with relocating to an unfamiliar place, I have been trying to hold on to anything familiar most days. (Let me tell you trading small dusty farm roads for highways and trees for concrete forests have not been an easy shift for me at all.) But I have managed to find myself on a small peace of land just outside the city borders, now that does not help much when it comes to daily work or food shopping routines - but it makes being at home a tad bit more bearable - and it also allows me to do some more familiar work, such as growing medicinal plants and start up some entomology projects. And on the upside weed seems to grow really well here, and with a great harvest of some good quality marijuana, I decided to make the most of it, medicinally of course...
So I cooked some oil!
As someone who doesn't smoke, I needed to find a way to make the most of the good weed harvest, and I did so by cooking down some weed oil making use of what I had on hand, in this case it was 98% alcohol and a slow cooker.
So I started by filling a 25 L drum with bud and covered it with alcohol for a few hours and then strained town the liquid that came from this, thereafter I filtered the liquid through some coffee filters and placed the filtered extraction in the sun for decarboxylation, before cooking out the alcohol slowly over a low heat, in order to be left with clean tar-like weed oil two days later.
Weed oil has a vast array of medicinal uses when taken orally, and for this purpose I made a bunch of weed capsules, but I had quite a bit of oil left afterwards, and decided to explore different avenues, one of them being skincare, this included soaps, balms and creams. Because as it turns out weed oil has just as many healing properties when used as a topical application as it does when it is taken orally, and also when you apply cannabis oil directly to the skin, it does not enter the bloodstream, this simply means that there will be no psychoactivity or 'high' from using the product.
These amazing health benefits is what made me decide to make some skincare products with the excess oil I had produced.
Weed oil turns out to be a great attribute when it comes to localized pain management, and can help a great deal with with ailments such as back pain or joint pain and even arthritis when used as a topical application. And the best part is that it is really fast acting, because the CB2 receptors in the skin immediately bind to the cannabanoids in the oil.
Irritations and allergies
This is certainly on of my favorite uses for our home made canibis soaps and creams - they are great for relieving a great variety of skin irritations, such as insect bites, minor cuts and scratches or even allergic skin reactions, and all this while relieving the pain inflammation and swelling that goes with it.
Healthy looking skin
Cannabis is a wonderful antioxidant, and it really can do wonders for your skin, while serving as an anti aging treatment. It can help to heal and repair your skin naturally while preventing tissue damage that is caused by the environment.
Whether you accidentally burnt your hand on the oven element or simply stayed out in the sun too long - Cannabis creams and soaps really help when it comes to burns, not only does it take away the painful stinging as well as the inflammation, but it also helps your skin to repair itself, thus reducing scarring.
Cannabis oil is anti-bacterial:
The Cannabinoids that can be found in cannabis oils house great anti-bacterial properties. This means that cannabis oils can be used to treat and protect against all sorts of bacterial infections with a lot less side effects that using antibiotics for bacterial skin ailments.
Keeping it Clean
It was with this in mind that I set out making some of my own creams, balms, lotions, soaps and massage oils. And let me tell you something, there was a lot of trail and error involved as I was playing around with the recipes. I tried keeping the product as natural as possible by making use of natural cold pressed oils that I had available such as avocado oil, baobab oil, jojoba oil, frankincense and a few others. As a base for the soaps I used plant based glycerin. And in some of the products I added some self harvested dried herbs such as moringa, African wild sage and yarrow.
It was a very long time consuming effort - but I must say that I am really impressed with the end result, and I am looking forward to sharing some of these amazing recipes with you shortly!