• JT1

    Wildflowers

    (on May surprise boxes, camping trips, wildflowers and friends who have the patience to key out plants) A week ago, after what was thus far my favourite class ever, I met my friend Shana out in Joshua Tree national park for a spontaneous camping trip. Should you have the opportunity to go camping with a [...]

  • seathings3

    To the lonely seas and the sky

    (on murky depths and surrender) We watched him row out from the shore as the sun was setting. He rowed steadily, firmly, like someone who had been doing it for years. He jumped aboard his trimaran, which was moored next to our boat, and we called hello and chatted back and forth across the water. [...]

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    Spring things

    (changes, moisture, drought, and olfactory fireworks) Here in LA, springtime hits like this: As the pink jasmine starts to blossom, there is a slight pause, I imagine as the entire city takes a collective deep breath and thinks of only good things for a moment or two. Then they explode: a cacophony of white fireworks [...]

  • nm6

    We went East

    (adventures in New Mexico and thoughts on stress) As I started to write this, the tips of my fingers were numb, and my computer keys were so cold that I dared not rest my hands on them for any length of time. Jam was upstairs sleeping in the loft bed, having decided that his prerequisite [...]

  • pinon liqueur

    How to catch the light.

    (or, what to do with your Christmas tree) I liken chasing time to hanging out with cats. You cat people out there will understand this scenario: You want a cuddle, and you want it bad. Little fur ball is doing her thing, looking fluffy and cute. If you’re a normal, non-cat person, you pick her [...]

  • oven fries 2

    Root.

    (on grounding, stress relief, and being a still point in a turning world) Two hours drive from here, out in the desert, about 1/4 mile off one of my favourite hiking trails there’s a small hole cut out of a hillside. I used to tuck myself away there on a daily basis, for what I’d [...]

  • On teaching…

    Its a Tuesday morning and I have returned to my stoop. The goldenrod beside me is still in full bloom, and, in true Los Angeles fashion, the white sage leaves are starting to get thick and sticky again– they’ll be ready to harvest by the time the rains come. If the rains come. Mornings have [...]

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    Just add water

    (things to do with nettle seeds) In the beginning, there was a seed. A small, unassuming thing, that contained all of the potential in the world. A seed of knowledge, a seed of intention, a seed of change. I often picture the web of life as a series of movements and pauses– potentials, probabilities, things [...]

  • plum acorn1

    Plum and acorn custard tart

    As I write this, I have my back turned on my office and kitchen, both of which have been completely devastated by my tornado-like working methods, which go something like this: ‘start one thing then another then another then another then forget what you were doing, make a snack, then decide to write a blog [...]

  • chefchaouen4

    We went to Morocco

    Drivers in Morocco aren’t quite like drivers here in California. Our driver on the 3 hour drive from Tangier to Chefchaouen drove in the middle of the road the majority of the way, swerving into the right lane at the last minute for oncoming traffic. He stopped at a Mosque to pray for 20 minutes, [...]

Cauldrons and Crockpots is a blog about food, herbs, travel and magic. Not Harry Potter magic or Wiccan magic or pagan magic but good old every day practical magic. You know, the magic that's in the scent of a few sprigs of rosemary and some rose petals in a hot cup of tea on a rainy afternoon. The magic of the love in a sprinkling of sugar on a fresh-out-the-oven biscotti for your friend who's having a bad day. The magic in thyme syrup bubbling away on the stove for treating a nasty cough. In burning juniper twigs for sick rooms and in crushed sage leaves for grounding. Or the magic in sitting on your front stoop watching the light change in the morning warming your hands on a steaming cup of coffee and a dream that's still being woven from the night before. Like I said, practical.

For more information about this blog and who it's written by see 'Why I'm Here'.

smoked hot chocolate

Crying over smoked milk

This post is being submitted to the Wild Things roundup over at Hunger and Thirst. If you [still] haven’t checked it out, please do! Few things are as evocative as smoke. It’s primal. We humans have been using smoke since we started using fire. Which, if you think about it, was a long long time [...]

pinus quadrifolia

Intention

[conifer sirup for expectorance and yum] Last week Los Angeles was blessed with the presence of the herbalist Matthew Wood. Surprisingly humble for someone who’s spent longer than I’ve been alive dedicated to the study of herbal medicine, being around him is always fun. At one point, we were sitting in my mum’s kitchen while [...]

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Moroccan mallow salad

If I were to have a robot self, I would describe it something like this: A satellite dish, with roots, and a nuclear reactor in the middle, plus two hands and a body with which to express the product of said reaction. And when it comes to writing, I feel like one has to have [...]

lemon lavender polenta cake

Lemon Lavender polenta cake

(on livers, and letting go a bit) I was standing in my friend Alysa’s back yard smelling the desert air– with snow falling up in the mountains, and rain clouds billowing their way across the valley, the smell was electric, and cold, and wet. She’d gone to work already. I was packing up, getting ready [...]

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A New Day’s resolution, and abhyanga.

As I said, these last couple of posts went up the wrong way around. Nonetheless, Happy New Year, lovely readers. Here are some photos from our Christmas week out in the desert. I’m not really one for New Years resolutions- for the past year or so I’ve been practicing something I’ve come to dub ‘New [...]