We been pickin cotton…

We been pickin cotton for ya – Under master’s hand.

We been pickin cotton for ya – master says we can.

We been pickin cotton for ya – Throats dry with bleeding lips.

We been pickin cotton for ya – We hopin for a sip.

We been pickin cotton for ya – No water for our lips

We been pickin cotton for ya – masters’ got a whip.

Yes, those lines they run deep that runs across my face.  But it’s those lines run down my back that my people like to trace.

We been picking cotton for ya – One day we be free.

We been picking cotton for ya – Now let’s let it be.

These words, the first time I heard them, gave me soul-vibrating chills.  The impact – wow, the impact – was breath-stealing, gut-wrenchingly powerful.  I did not read these words in a book – nor a website.  They were not obtained in a typical manner – in a way that would be believable to many.  Several months ago I dreamt of the woman who would later give this song to a friend during vision.  It was explained in my friend’s vision that this was a slave song – the words needed to be transcribed and passed on to me.  While powerful & extraordinary, the purpose of this left us confused.  Why had we been gifted a slave song?  What was the meaning for us & how were we to apply this to our lives or lessons? Or, was it for us at all?

What follows is more than a story but a depiction of the ever-expanding interconnected web of my life.  More than a description of a single session, it illuminates how the lives of others get woven into the fabric of my own.  The way people find me is simply amazing and represents the definition of Mitákuye Oyás’iŋ – our interconnectedness to each other & all that is.

Mitákuye Oyás’iŋ is a Lakota Sioux phrase translated to mean “all my relations”, the meaning of which reflects the belief regarding our interconnectedness.  It is a prayer of oneness and harmony with all forms of life: other people, animals, birds, insects, trees and plants, rocks, rivers, mountains, weather — AND Creator.  Central to its meaning is that I cannot exist without you and you cannot exist without me.  Everything we do has an effect on others and on our world – seems pretty simple & straight forward.  But, like most simple things, this is complex, contains layers and traction…once a connection is forged, others are opened, and still others and others and others and….you get the point.  You can get lost in these rabbit holes!

Sometimes the power of this concept hits me like a ton of bricks – sometimes synchronicities make it hard to deny our interconnectedness.  Delilah (not her real name) has been coming to see me for about 6 months.  I could tell you a whole different story about how we crossed each other’s paths and the signs that pointed her in my direction…but I’ll spare you.  Delilah is very in tune with her being and, for this reason, her sessions normally consists of an energy “tune-up” to help with grounding, balance or clarity and maybe a little shamanic healing work.  I received a notification yesterday that she had booked an appointment for today – I love these surprise appointment messages!  Delilah emailed as well to let me know she could come early if it worked out for my schedule.  I responded that I had an appointment before hers & that I would most likely need all the scheduled time. HA!  It’s a pretty good sign a session is going to pack a punch when the Creator starts rearranging shit on you!  Not more than 30 minutes after I responded to Delilah’s email, did the client scheduled before her message me to say she would only have time for 30 minutes.  I guess it was going to be possible to see Delilah 45 minutes earlier than expected.  I love these twists and turns…

I have a confession – I woke up today not feeling very capable.  Not feeling very strong.  Not feeling confident in my intuitive or healing abilities.  I confessed to a friend that I always get excited when I have a session with Delilah but the excitement is usually followed by fear.  Delilah is the ONLY person I see in which this irrational fear comes into play.  My fear is she will discover I’m a fraud & that I have absolutely no clue what I’m doing.  Shiiit…my cover is about to be blown…

Delilah was in the waiting room as I walked the previous client out of session.  She is always a beautiful sight – oozing with intelligence, independence and a courageous spirit.  Today was no different but, as she hugged me tightly in greeting, I could feel her tension.  She began talking as she shrugged out of her coat & fell heavily into the chair.  As she spoke about the heavy energy she felt surrounding her, she appeared more vulnerable & sensitive than I had ever seen her.  She admitted to feeling weepy often in the previous week and that she was having difficulty with certain familial relationships.  An exploration of this topic felt cold – I was getting nothing from Spirit.  Though she appeared confident this was what our work should center on, she began telling of recent difficulties with her boss & the frustration this caused.  A few years earlier she had done healing work surrounding this person and had discovered their past life tie in which he had been an abusive controlling husband or father.

As our consult continued it became clear Delilah would receive a combination of Reiki, Shamanic healing and ThetaHealing® while on the massage table. I continued to ask questions as a way to dig down into the heart of the issue – she exclaimed with clarity that the slave/slave master dynamic was a new past life relationship that needed to be explored.  Now we were getting somewhere.  As an afterthought Delilah looked at me wide-eyed as she suddenly remembered a message from Spirit she needed to pass on to me.  “I’m supposed to remind you of the boat”.  My head jerked up as my breath caught in the throat and my heart pounded like a war drum.  I looked at her and said, “You need to hear about a dream I had several weeks ago.  I think it’s for you.”

I am in the passenger seat of a 4×4 vehicle with my husband and a close friend.  We are driving on flat land looking for the perfect camping spot.  We stop at an amazing space right on the ocean — there is no beach to speak of.  The land just morphs into the depths of the ocean.  Suddenly I find myself on a slave ship – we are in the middle of our voyage.  I am standing looking overboard contemplating throwing myself out.  To jump out of the ship means certain death – I weigh my options.  Desperation lies in staying … and going. 

Like a scene from a movie, we suddenly cut to me crouched in a cage made of bamboo.  Not a permanent enclosure but one constructed in such a way that I can be seen from all angles and contained until it was time to move me.  I realize I am a slave at auction.  In an odd way, I feel safe contained in my cage. 

As I look around, I notice across the way another cage.  Here sits another African woman in wait.  Although her head is down, her eyes are directed my way.  Her stare is intense, soul reaching and pleading.  The intensity of her stare – not fear – wakes me from my dream.  My thoughts raced.  “She needs my help.  What am I supposed to do for her?”                                                       

     As soon as morning arrives, I call my friend to relay my vision & to inquire if she had a similar experience.  I am not surprised to hear we dream traveled together. 

I WAS surprised to hear her visit with the African woman was much more relaxed & casual – even fun!.

I go on to tell Delilah that my friend called the afternoon after this dream to tell me the slave woman was with her.  They were talking but there was no indication of what she needed or wanted – I just needed to know she was there.  Again, a few days later, I receive a call from my friend.  The tone is much different this time –  the woman had gifted a slave song.  No explanation other than, “pass this on to Randi.  She will know when the words will be needed”.

The week following the dream, I felt the African woman’s presence wholly and heavily.  There was little to no communication – just the cold hard pleading stare.  It is, as I am relaying this dream and the after events to Delilah that she crumples into tears in front of me.  Good – this is the trail.  I have found the missing link to this puzzle.  I ask Delilah if she thinks this African woman was her in a past life.  All she can manage is to shake her head yes.  We have been lead to the story that needs to be healed.

As I settle Delilah in for the healing work, I talk about my time in West Africa studying the Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade.  I ask if she has always felt a strong connection or emotion regarding the slave trade – her answer does not surprise me.  She says the strength of the slave spirit has always tugged at her heart.  As I tune into Delilah’s energy field, I ask for the Creator’s guidance to take over.  As I become the conduit for the healing, I am inundated with impressions.  As I establish connection with Delilah, my hands to her shoulders, I see her as the slave woman being whipped, beaten and abused.  I see her being choked as my hands are on the back of her neck.  But most prominently, I see her current boss – he was her slave master.  In this lifetime, and past lifetimes, he has been scared of her… of her power… of her strength.

As we work on finding and changing beliefs surrounding attachment, I see the slave woman’s spirit detach from Delilah’s physical body and get lost.  We cannot continue meaningful work until this lost part of her soul is integrated back into her being.  I explain what I see to Delilah and receive consent to proceed.  As we begin the process of soul retrieval and integration, I see the African woman from my dream approach the left side of the table.  In my mind’s eye, I see she has approached Delilah on the left side of the boat.  Delilah has been grasping the edge, contemplating her jump overboard.  The woman holds out her hand and says “Come with me.  You no longer have to endure this – you no longer have to stay here.”  Though, letting go of the boat means certain death to Delilah, she is coaxed to unclench her grasp and step overboard.  As Delilah steps over the edge of the boat, their two spirits ascend above the boat and swirl around and around each other until they become one.  Finally, their Spirit settles peacefully on top of the water and they float in serene freedom.

After our session has concluded and we are easing ourselves back into this time and space, Delilah looks at me and says, “I didn’t tell you this before. Earlier in the week I was working with a Quantum Healing technique.  I found myself in slave quarters where a woman was up on blocks being whipped.  I approached her from the left, held out my hand and said “Come with me.  You no longer have to endure this – you no longer have to stay here.”

I cannot make this stuff up.

Instant chills.  Tears.  And, relief that today was not the day that she discovered I’m a fraud.  HA!

I like to view my life as a web that I am the center of.  This is neither egoic, nor self-centered as we are each the center of our own circles.  In keeping in mind Mitákuye Oyás’iŋ, it’s easy to see how my dream intersected with another – how our shared dream was a message for yet another – and how going forward, the soul retrieval for Delilah will impact the people in her own life. Every action we take, that is motivated by love, leads to connection.  I believe connection is one of the greatest joys of life – to witness or experience the masterful design that takes place to ensure certain souls connect is awe-inspiring.  THIS is what I live for – this is why I open for the Creator to work through me.

What does the song mean to me now in the aftermath?  This whole experience & all the takeaways are multi-layered.  Intense.  Deep.  Simply put – and not to make lightly of the atrocities of slavery – aren’t we ALL pickin cotton?  Aren’t we all under a Master’s hand of some kind – addiction, fear, anger, or disconnection – that we are trying to free ourselves of?  Aren’t we all suffering in our attempts to free ourselves?  Don’t we ALL need the reminder that though we have scars we can trace & memories we can relive, that at a certain point we just need to drop it and let it be?  Let it be so we may move forward in love.  In connection.

**The word “master” was deliberately NOT capitalized.  We are slaves to noone – noone is our master.

UPDATE – April 28th, 2018:

My husband and I traveled to Maryland for his best friend’s wedding.  The morning of the ceremony, I headed out to explore as Matt was getting prepped and ready for the day.  The wedding venue was located less than 10 minutes from North Point State Park.  At the point of the peninsula, the Chesapeake Bay & Potomac River intersect.  This was my destination for the morning.

Untitled As I arrived in my nature-y surroundings, I felt myself relax into the experience.  I drove at a meandering pace throughout the whole park before settling on a place to park.  As I drove there were soft sandy beaches to my right & sharp jagged rock keeping the water at bay to my left.  I parked in a location that allowed access to the beach AND the marshy area where the cranes, egrets and heron were flocking to.  Even in Iowa, I gravitate toward these birds.  It is a personal challenge to get as close as I can without them flying away – these birds like their privacy & to be allowed within a close proximity is a great honor.  I feel a kinship in this way.

I am strolling along the marsh, mind blank & soaking in the energy of the birds & the place – all is perfect.  Suddenly, I am halted.  My body vibrates.  I am covered in chills.  My Spirit eyes survey my surroundings. In that moment I feel the slave woman with me again.  She is here to remind me we were here in another lifetime together.  To hammer in the importance of inter-connection.

And, to assure me I am not a fraud.  😉

My Journey Thru Reiki

I am frequently asked how I got started in my spiritual-based business – was I always able to do what I do?  How did I know it was the right path for me?  The answer is always the same – it all started with Reiki.  I stumbled onto the healers path after being intrigued with conversations friends would have about how incredible Reiki energy felt surging through their bodies.  At the time, I had also newly embarked on a path to spiritual self-discovery.  I had no idea what THAT even meant much less what impact Reiki would have on my life.

In the haziness of a true newbie, I completed the first two levels of Usui Reiki.  Because I was such a baby on my spiritual path & didn’t know a thing about Reiki, I did not fully understood the concepts I was taught, I had little to no experiences during the attunment processes but, MAN, I sure felt that energy flowing within and out of me as I performed my first few treatments.  My hands vibrated and I dripped sweat from the intensity of the energy coursing through my body.  I was a believer & these were my clues that Reiki flowed freely & easily through me.  I sporadically used Reiki on myself, friends and immediate family but did not feel the need to pursue further classes.

A few years passed and I found I had stumbled my way into massage therapy school.  I discussed with an instructor my wishes to advance my Reiki practice & explained personal struggles were making me question that decision.  She suggested a “Reiki redo” to reset the energy & to experience the upgraded energy Holy Fire Reiki would provide.  She explained Holy Fire Reiki consisted of a higher vibrating energy than the Usui Reiki I had originally taken.  I eagerly took her advice and took Holy Fire Reiki I, II & Advanced Reiki Training (ART) classes through her.  In Usui Reiki courses, the instructor interacts with the students directly to ignite and open the flow of Reiki energy in each student.  During the course of the Holy Fire Reiki I & II weekend, I came to find out that this was a major difference between Usui & Holy Fire Reiki.  In Holy Fire Reiki, the instructor begins Experiences, Placements and Ignitions with a semi-guided meditation but backs away and allows the spirit of Holy Fire to direct and lead the experience that is necessary for the individual.  It is incredible to hear others tell about their experiences and realize everyone gets exactly what they need to heal.

My Holy Fire Reiki I & II weekend was magical.  I had a very profound and healing dream the night before the first class.  I think I would have been happy if that was all that I experienced.  During the Holy Love Experience divine love is installed into each person’s soul more deeply and clearly.  It is said to induce great love and feelings of being deeply cared for and nurtured.  During this experience, two beloved friends, who had each passed away too young, came to guide me on a path along the river.  We wandered the river’s edge until we broke through a tree-lined path to a wide open prairie at the top of a bluff.  Situated in this secure location was a small rustic cabin.  Warmth emanated through the lights shining behind curtained windows and the billows of smoke escaping the chimney.  As we approached, a man casually stood on the covered front porch.  He smiled a kind greeting and ushered my friends & I through the door.  As we entered we were greeted by the warmth of all those crowded inside, each present to offer their support, love and guidance on my path.  Herbs hung drying from the rafters, mortar and pestles in mid-use were on the table and a concoction brewed on the stove.  The intense and pure love that emanated from this place was breathtaking, confirming and soothing.  I had found my home – my soul – my safe haven.

A few months passed before I was able to take the Advanced Reiki Training class.  Diving timing is a funny thing you don’t recognize until the moment you are in it…or later – it will never cease to amaze and delight me when I recognize these moments.  The ART class was held less than a week after I had completed my vision quest.  I was still swirling with the new energy, messages and visions I had collected during this quest – many of which made no sense.  The experiences during the ART class caused many of the floating pieces to fit together & connected dots.  The Healing in the River of Life Experience was conducted to release all that needed to be released through the Holy Fire.  The flames of the Holy Fire do not burn, but sooth, purify, heal, guide and empower the individual.  During this experience the spirit of one of my newly discovered animal guides merged into my being and we became one.  At another point, I saw the heavens and Universal knowledge open to me.  I reached my hand up into the starry knowledge filled sky and saw a funnel implanted into my being.  The funnel extended from the heavens into my Crown chakra, through my core and out thru my hands and feet.  As this was happening, I felt the Universe fill and flow through me as I was laid upon the Earth.  When I was comfortable with my body pressed upon the warm Earth, my hands were gently lifted and Amethyst crystals were inserted into my palms.  The ART class was one of the most empowering, fulfilling and inspiring classes I have yet to take.

At this point I was still not convinced I wanted to be a Reiki Master. I had been told early on that the only reason to go onto this step would be to teach.  And I was NOT into that idea…at all.  I opened my massage therapy & spiritual healing practice and was content with the growth of my personal Reiki practice & the frequency with which this service was used.  At some point I came to realize I was ready for my energy practice to advance.  A thriving Reiki Center in another city had been catching my attention.  I was intrigued by the idea of a full-time Reiki center and wanted to meet the owner & hear how she was creating a community around this modality.  I reached out and was invited to visit for a day.  The night before this meeting I had a vision dream in which the ancestors were connecting and discussing my life path with me.  I woke up foggy but excited by possibility.  At my chiropractic visit that morning, the doctor asked about the woman in green.  I laughed and said I didn’t know what he was talking about. He went on to explain that she was there that day helping him with the adjustment & that she was definitely there for me.  Whoa!

At the Reiki Center, the owner, Mary, and I visited for quite a while before she offered  to do a Reiki treatment.  I snagged the opportunity.  Mind you, while I had always been able to feel the Reiki coursing through my body as I treated another, I had never received a Reiki session in which I felt or experienced much.  (*This is a reflection of how closed I had been prior to this day & in no way a reflection of the abilities of the practitioners I had received from.)  During the course of the session, a guide presented himself to me & showed me a sacred object I was to create.  I was blown away by the images, colors and sensations I felt all throughout the hour-long treatment.  When the session was complete, the owner looked at me with wide eyes and said “Thank you so much for allowing me to share this session with you”.  I inquired what she had seen and she explained she rarely saw anything but in this session she had been overwhelmed with the beautiful deep emerald-green of my heart and the expansiveness of it.  In addition, she felt a warm & loving female presence associated with the color.  My lady in green had made her presence known in a most magical way.  I knew in that moment I had found my Reiki Master.

I blindly signed up for the next Reiki Master class Mary was offering.  At this time, I was not aware that the Holy Fire energy had recently experienced an upgrade to its intensity & purity.  This newest upgrade was called Holy Fire Reiki II.  At the beginning of the first day of class, our instructor let us know she had just received this newest upgrade and would be passing to us the highest & purest form of Reiki available.  I felt fortunate to have bumbled my way into another Reiki upgrade situation – we are so guided and taken care of when we are following our soul’s purpose!!  During Day 1 of the Master class, the Pre-Ignition experience is conducted to get the student ready for the Reiki Master Ignition.  It works by removing any energies that are incompatible with the Holy Fire energy and opens the space where the Holy Fire energy will be located.  During this exercise, I found myself floating on my back in a river being washed and cleansed.  A female guide stood on the shore beckoning me to come forward.  Upon leaving the water, I sat with her on the riverbank and felt the sand sifting through our fingers and toes – scrubbing the last of what no longer belonged away from my being.  At this time, I became aware of the sky opening up and God’s hands coming down to offer me a healing.  As I looked up, I saw God’s face and recognized the source of all love, compassion and empathy.  It was powerfully humbling.

In the almost two years since I received my Reiki Master designation, I have experienced varying degrees of shifts and growth in my Reiki practice.  While they feel like subtle shifts, they have a huge impact on my clients and me.  Reiki sessions don’t take as long, my body temperature is regulated, my sight and intuition has opened to allow me to follow instructions of the guides that come through, the flow of the Reiki is even, consistent and strong, and my clients are experiencing amazing sensations and seeing amazing things themselves.  I attribute this to the upgraded Holy Fire Reiki II energy – it is truly amazing.

In October 2017 I taught my first group of Holy Fire II Reiki students.  I never in my wildest dreams thought I would end up teaching.  In total transparency, my reason for advancing to Reiki Master was the allow me access to Karuna Reiki training.  However, the Universe is always trying to lead us to the opportunities that align with our soul’s purpose.  There is the saying, “When the student is ready, the teachers will come”.  This works in reverse also – “When the teacher is ready, the students will come”.  I had several people inquire about the possibility of me teaching them Reiki and I knew if they were asking it was time to teach.  I told myself it only had to be for one group of students and stepped out of my comfort zone and planned a class.  I was totally shocked with the joy & ease I felt in the space of teacher.  The pride I felt in witnessing the learning, connections and successes of those students.  I, again, stumbled into the right opportunity.

This past December (2017), I received attunement & certification in Violet Flame Reiki. This certification intrigued me because I had only heard about the Violet Flame through clients who work with it.  History purports healers in the time of Atlantis worked with this energy but their egos grew large and they abused the knowledge of the Violet Flame for self gain.  For this reason the Violet Flame was taken away until it was reintroduced in 2012.  The purpose of its reintroduction & use is to increase the power of traditional Reiki in preparation for the higher Universal vibratory levels we are now experiencing.  As the protector of the Violet Flame here on Earth, St. Germaine works in conjunction with Ascended Master Kuan Yin to oversee the healers who channel this energy – safeguards to ensure proper use and handling of this energy.  This unique energy is meant to be used in removing, transmuting and cleansing negative energy from the physical, mental and spiritual bodies and prepare those stuck in negative patterns for ascension.

We now come to the present and what might be coming next in my Reiki practice & services.  Several months ago, I awoke from a dream vision in which I was told to seek out Holy Fire Karuna Reiki certification.  I have been in contact with my Reiki Master and this class is coming soon.  I am super excited!  There are plans to teach more beginner classes & schedule my first Advanced & Master Reiki classes in 2018.  I have had persistent thoughts about a few other classes that have not yet been mapped out.  I have ideas for shares and a few unique opportunities for those who already practice Reiki but I am not rushing any of this.  2017 was a year of intense activity and doing – I am determined to allow 2018 to be the year of rest and allowing divine timing to guide my actions and decisions.  

It took years for me to recognize my path as a healer – I did not have the confidence or belief that I was worthy of this gift for quite a long time.  I questioned how it was that I could be so incredibly broken and have the ability to help others put themselves back together.  The confidence came after the disbelief was washed away during a nervous breakdown.  This fissure in my being absolutely debilitated me for a solid month.  The raw emotion was horrible but the outcome has been incredible.  I am deeply and honestly grateful to have gone through this experience and come out on the side of light.  It was this experience that cracked me open & drained me of massive amounts of self-doubt, negative self-worth, anger and the hatred I directed back toward myself.  It pushed me from being who I thought I was supposed to be into the light of who I am.  I did not recognize the person that was born of this experience but I felt at ease & joyful.  To get to that point, I HAD to cry.  I HAD to heal.  Without Reiki, I don’t know what would have happened.  Reiki not only aided in my personal healing, it helped forge a personal connection with the Creator & my true self, healing gifts and life purpose.

Learning & receiving Reiki has been a life-changing experience — each class and session has added something to my practice – extra layers, greater understanding, and new depths to be shared & experienced.  Reiki has been about much more than broadening my education and awareness – it has been a healing journey.  I no longer find it ironic that my clients and I share similar family histories, core wounds and spiritual gifts.  I have trust in God, the Universe, the Source of all that is – I recognize those who need what we have are lead to us on their own journeys to self-discovery.  In this understanding, I can be truly appreciative of the struggles of the past, in the present and those yet to come.  Because of these struggles I grow personally.  Because of these, I expand the group of those I can help.  And, in that small way, I am helping others heal and grow.

Turn your shoes into savings! Limited time only…

Turn your shoes into savings! Limited time only…

November – the month in which we are reminded to be thankful for all we have & grateful for the opportunities we have to give.  There are opportunities all around but my favorites are those that turn MY clutter into opportunity for someone else!  When my friend Linda Reicks, Secretary of the Animal Welfare Friends in Monticello, asked for help in the Shoe Drive Fundraiser, I had to say yes after hearing how the collected gently worn, used & new shoes are used.

Funds2Orgs offers organizations an opportunity to raise money through the donations of shoes.  Fundraising organizations that have partnered with Funds2Orgs are issued a check based on the weight of the shoes collected.  Pretty cool, huh?  But it’s so much cooler when you learn these shoes are redistributed throughout Funds2Orgs network of small business partners in developing countries.  Funds2Orgs works with micro-entrepreneurs to create, maintain and grow small businesses in developing countries where economic opportunities and jobs are limited.  Profits from the sale of these shoes help to feed, clothe and house the participants and their families.  How freaking cool is that?



FUNDRAISING DATES: Ends November 15, 2017

WHERE: Redwing Healing Arts inside Awaken Family Chiropractic

WHAT: Looking for gently worn, used & new shoes – mens, womens, childrens of ALL styles

  • Drop off shoes with Randi & earn $2 in credit for each pair of shoes donated
  • Those credits turn into savings on single services, packages OR gift certificates
  • A maximum of $6 in credit per half hour of service may be used
  • No service exclusions
  • May be combined with sales and special deals
  • Credits must be redeemed by April 15th, 2018


For more information on this fundraiser:




Oily spotlight on “Thieve’s Oil”

Early into my journey with essential oils and their **purpoted** magical healing properties, I decided I would create my own blends using the best individual oils I could find & afford.  I did not want to rely on a company for their blends or be a distributor for someone else’s products because I have had enough training to do this on my own.  I don’t know how it happened but I quickly became obsessed with Young Living’s Thieves oil blend.  I think it all began with a story…

During the Black Plague of 16th century, a small band of thieves had been caught and brought before the King.  The thieves had been entering the homes of plague victims and stripping the dead bodies of money, jewelry and anything else of value that could be found.  Although the plague was highly contagious and the thieves were in daily contact with the dead bodies of plague victims, not one of this morbid band of thieves ever contracted the plague.  The King, eager to protect himself and the Royal Family, demanded to know how the thieves had avoided contracting the plague.

Soon enough, the truth came out. The thieves were all members of the same family – a family from a long line of Apothecaries. Because of their intimate knowledge of the healing arts, passed down from generation to generation, they were familiar with a combination of specific plant oils that, when rubbed on the body, would protect the body from contracting this most feared and deadly disease. The King forced the thieves to divulge the specific plant oils used, and the formula for extracting them from the plants. With that vital information in hand, he was thereby able toprotect himself and his family from the deadly plague.

I cannot attest to the accuracy or credibility of this account, but the same source claims the specific recipe the robbers used can still be found in the Royal English Archives.  Young Living’s founder came to discover this bit of history, created a blend and aptly named it “Thieve’s Oil”.  Now, I’ve never actually used, tested or smelled YL’s blend but the story and the **purported** properties of this blend intrigued me enough that I had to find a recipe of my own.  Searching “thieve’s oil” will lead you down many paths – differing histories and recipes but most posess the same basic elements.

I have used this immune boosting blend for the last 4 years – I’ve even given it to friends who have poor immune systems for a little extra protection during the cold & flu season. My 10 year old has felt the effects & always ask for it when he feels under the weather.  I’m not saying it works (**) but when I feel my immune system getting weak, the start of aches & pains or a cold coming on, I slather my feet with this oil blend, put on my socks and let nature take its course.  I repeat throughout the day & once more before crawling into bed for the night. Typically, after a day of this treatement regimine, I’m back to my normal self.  And, if I’m not back to healthy, I can feel my body winning the battle & I repeat until I am 100% better.

What I use the oil blend for:

  • Immune support – applied to feet – when I feel weak & achy
  • Immune support – applied to chest – when I have a chest cold, bronchitis, etc.
  • Immune support – diffused in the air – during and after a whole family outbreak of some kinda bug or virus
  • Cleaning agent – added to vinegar

I’ve read accounts of people adding the blend to their washing machine or spraying door handles, stuffed animals, cell phones and pet bedding – these all seem like great ideas & easy enough to incorporate!!  But, I’ve also read accounts of people adding this to their toothpaste, orange juice or in a throat spray.  I absolutely do NOT recommend any practice of injesting oils (unless they are specifically marked as food grade – and I am only hesitantly ok with this).  In my opinion, I don’t want to expose my GI tract to highly concentrated and volatile essential oils.  I do realize this is a judgment from my own schooling and experience though.  You have to do what is right for you – not me.

I do detract from the basic recipe (shared below) based on the purpose & situation.  For example, if I’m using for respiratory ailments, perhaps I will increase the amount of Rosemary & Eucalyptus.  I really listen to my intuition when blending for myself & family – but when creating for sale, I stick to the original recipe.  I suggest you do the same until you are really familiar with the individual oils & how they act together.

~.2 Fl. Oz-  NEAT immune boosting oil blend:

  • 40 drops Clove
  • 35 drops Lemon
  • 20 drops Cinnamon Bark
  • 15 drops Eucalyptus
  • 10 drops Rosemary

A carrier oil must be used with this neat blend before applying to the body – the proportion is 4 drops carrier : 1 drop neat essential oil blend.  The advantage of creating the NEAT blend is that you are able to use it where and when needed – add to your vinegar as a cleaning agent, diffuse without carrier oil, or combine with your favorite carrier oil for body applications.

Purchasing the individual oils will cost a minimum of $35 – depending on the brand & quality of the oil, of course.  It is a small investment with a huge pay-off if it helps you & your loved ones have more well days than sick days.  If you are not interested in creating your own, or would like to trial the blend before investing in your own oils and supplies, I do sell this blend in small or large batches of NEAT or combined with a carrier.

Get your sample (.2 fl oz) of NEAT immune boosting oil for $5.35

For other options, please email me at randi@redwinghealingarts.com


** FDA regulations require I don’t make any claim essential oils derived from plants, flowers, herbs, trees, resins or anything organically produced in nature actually has healing properties

Do no harm

I have been composing this post for well over a week – both in my head, and pen to paper via the keyboard.  I have a multitude of words..yet, none feel right.  As a newer massage therapist, I am developing my philosophy of care and really learning about the broken healthcare system through experiences my clients have shared.  I have never doubted the atrocious care my friends or clients have received though; it has been hard to visualize the experiences.  Hard because a small part of me still bought into the myth that the healthcare system should make us well.  That healthcare providers are compassionate listeners without bias or judgment who will doggedly search for a diagnosis and treatment. That we, as patients – needers of care – could discuss our needs and feel safe, trusted and believed.  While I KNOW this isn’t the norm, I still hoped and believed it could be true. That is, until I witnessed the broken system in action…and continue to. I have journeyed beside one of my dearest friends as she has experienced all the brokenness our healthcare systems has to offer.  And I am angry.

I would love to share the details of these horrific experiences, but they are not mine to share.  I would love to present a timeline of the appointments, tests and condescending commentary of the healthcare workers that have “helped” her during her illness.  If I could share, you would not read about a single healthcare worker who listened to her, their patient – a patient who, by the way, has had an extensive patient care, research and health education career.  You would not find evidence of a single test run for the diagnosis she has handed them over and over and over again.  You would not see a treatment plan. Ultimately, you would see only judgment, neglect and abuse where care should have been. I am disgusted.

And, I am sickened.  Sickened that the healthcare system we, as Americans, are mandated to carry health insurance for has done nothing but ignore a visible illness or injury.  Has literally danced around the source of illness and skipped right to expensive treatment options that will absolutely not work until the problem is addressed.  Sickened that the healthcare system that is in place to take care of us when we are ill, injured or otherwise NOT healthy has created psychological trauma and depression because they refuse to listen, examine or investigate.  Sickened that each of the Hippocratic Oaths has been so shamelessly dishonored by the very people who vowed to uphold these ideals.

But, I am also saddened.  Saddened for the doctors and nurses who did care once upon a time.  Who saw each new patient with excitement and were ready for a challenge and a new learning opportunity.  Saddened that egos grew, spirits were broken, and apathy set in.  Egos grew to the point that the possibility that a patient knows THEIR BODY better than a “professional” sounds absurd!  Spirits shattered to the point that compassion for self and others has been driven out and replaced with apathy.  Apathy, the occupier of these now empty shells of caregivers.

Even through the anger, disgust and sadness, I pray for these providers.  I pray they rediscover what originally called them into the healing profession.  For courage to walk a new path if this one no longer calls or feeds their soul.  For humility, ears that hear and hearts that feel & lead.  But mostly, I pray for their patients to experience no harm at their hand or mouth.  I pray for the ability of patients and their partners to advocate for proper care and the confidence to squash neglect and abusive treatment in its tracks.  I am hopeful.

I will not forget my friend’s horrific ordeal.  As much as I can’t stand to witness the effects of this illness or the psychological abuse she has endured, I am infinitely more thankful I can be here for her.  I am meant to witness this and, in an odd way, I am grateful for the front row seat & all I have learned.  I have made the following vows to myself for the benefit of all current and future clients.  If I find myself in the position of not believing a client, I pray my friend’s face will appear in my mind’s eye to interrupt the judgment and push me back into my place as compassionate caregiver.  If I find myself in a position where I can’t understand or treat an issue, I pray my ego quickly steps aside so I may research or make a referral – because the care I offer isn’t about ME but those who seek it. If I discover apathy living where compassion once resided, I pray I recognize it before I cause harm to another.  I pray and strive to ensure compassion and love remains at the center of my philosophy of care.  I am prepared.

Website Gratitude – Part 2

Well folks – I did it again…already.   I recreated my website mere weeks after publishing the first attempt.  I’m so incredibly happy and proud of the new site and remain grateful for all the hours I spent learning and navigating the website builder the first time around.  This second attempt took less than 10 hours – that seems like a lot when I put it out there like that.  But, in comparison to the first attempt, this was lightning quick!

The new site is cleaner, easier on the eyes, has better mobile capability and it just makes me happy.  I found a new online scheduling system shortly after beginning the redesign & I like THAT a whole lot more too.  Double win!!  But wait – there’s more!  I found this wonderful online tool, Canva, that makes creating marketing images a breeze – I can quickly slap together professional looking advertisements, cover photos, etc.  TRIPLE WIN!!  Canva has been the best discovery I’ve made in years, probably since sliced bread.  No lie.

Check out the new website here!

Look at this new online scheduling page too.


Website – a labor of gratitude

I might just be overly independent, stubborn and exacting.  And those attributes might just cause me some frustration but they aren’t BAD characteristics by any means – they are just ones I have to really keep an eye on and reign in when they start to run wild.  That usually happens when I’m really excited about something, have a vision, want to do it myself and then don’t know HOW to do it….like, for instance, if I were to try to create my own website with no previous experience or knowledge.

Sure, I spent a lot of time beating my hand against my head/my head against “the wall” BUT creating my website was an awesome experience!  It was a task full of lessons, reminders and opportunities for personal growth along the way .. and who doesn’t love seeing themselves grow?  I frequently reminded myself to be gentle, to not place unrealistic expectations or deadlines on myself and to have fun in the learning, trying and doing.  The process really woke up the creative parts of myself that have been sleeping or hiding for fear of making a mistake or not being perfect.  Imperfections and all, this website really represents who I am, what my purpose is and where I am in the process of growing my business and learning new skills.





I am striving to be more grateful and thankful in my frustrating moments.  What is frustrating you right now?  Or, do you notice that you struggle with the same situation or reaction over and over?  What about the situation is pushing you to grow in new and surprising ways?  Can you list the positives or opportunities for growth as easily as the perceived negatives?  It’s not always an easy task but if you are fed up or tired of the struggle and frustration, I urge you to try.  Often times changing perspective is the key to more gratitude, happiness and joy.