Posts from the ‘Mind, body and soul’ Category

The power of scent

Aromatherapy is well-known for helping relax a stressed mind or ease anxiety but which scents are best for which problem?

Here’s a mini-guide to useful essential oils.

Difficulty sleeping?

Lavender is the best known remedy for this but camomile also calms nerves and stress, so putting them together is a great combo.

Feeling anxious?

Try geranium which balances the emotions, calms and uplifts (works for over-excited kids too!).

Out of sorts?

Can’t quite put your finger on it but you’re having an ‘off’ day. Try combining these rather festive (as in Christmas) scents – but at any time of the year: cinnamon, clove, orange and vanilla.

cinnamon helps lift depression and exhaustion

clove reduces and soothes tension

vanilla de-stresses and relieves anxiety

orange calms nerves and lifts the blues


Citrus notes are great for lifting emotions and tiredness. Any of the citrus family is good for this, but try grapefruit, mandarin, bergamot or orange.


You need some delicate flowers. Try jasmine which lifts tension, anxiety and negative feelings.

Link with lavender for balance and sandalwood to lift depression and restore vitality.

Jasmine also activates alertness, so if you’re feeling a bit foggy…!

Not in the mood?

Ylang ylang is top for aphrodisiac aromas – it can release inhibitions and ease stress and tension. Another sensual oil is patchouli which lifts exhaustion so combine the two for extra impact.

Ylang ylang is aloso very calming so good if your very tense or tetchy.

Source: Prima magazine January 2017


Thought for the Day

There is beauty everywhere, and also kindness.

The trick is to start looking out for it.










Thought for the Day

Chocolate chestnut fondant cake

So what has this got to do with massage?

Absolutely nothing, but it’s spot on for a bit of self-indulgence and me-time.

Easy to make AND gluten-free (seems to be an in word at the mo’) if you’re intolerant to wheat, great warm from the oven with vanilla ice-cream or just plain cream.


140g very dark chocolate (I used 74% cocoa, up to you how dark you want it)

70g butter

500g chestnut purée (this comes in a handy 500g tin – crème de marrons de l’Ardèche Clément Faugier – in France where I live, for 2.35€; you may have to buy a few packs of Merchant Gourmet’s rather expensive version in the UK)

3 eggs


Melt chocolate and butter together, add the chestnut purée and mix well. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well between each addition.

Pour into a 20 cm tin, preferably loose-bottomed, and bake at 180°C for 20 minutes. (Last time I made it, I needed to leave it for 40 mins, don’t know what happened there, perhaps I used a different tin, so make sure it’s cooked on the top before you remove it from the oven. Don’t try a skewer in the middle ‘cos it’s a fondant cake and squidgy in the centre!)

Serve warm or cold with ice cream or cream.




Thought for the Day

Thought for the Day

Thought for the Day