This is a Post about More than Body Butter

I made body butter and it is luscious! But this post is about more than body butter.

In my mother’s family, our gatherings may feature either music, jigsaw puzzles, swimming, perogies or massive games of battleship, but every time they are punctuated by bursts of hearty, contagious laughter. We can always find the gang in large parks or public spaces by listening for the laughing (it actually really works).

For centuries humans have known about the healing balm of laughter, yet it can be hard to do just when your body and soul needs it. But, if you are put into the middle of people who make you giggle or chuckle or snort or whatever your style happens to be, then ‘the best medicine’ suddenly becomes much easier to take.

I realise that many of my creative moments come through the filter of friends and family. Real people spark poems or blog posts, crafts or desserts. Sometimes this inspiration is practical: they have the recipe, I taste it, and then try to make it myself. Other times the inspiration comes from a phrase out of the blue or from years of them just being them, being part of good times, hard times, times to laugh your socks off. I am blessed to have so many inspirations in my world.

This brings me to my cousin Connie, who is one of the family’s best laughers and who also happens to make her own body butter from a recipe. I tried hers and knew I’d have to make my own. Connie makes a lot of things – including making people laugh – and I’m currently trying to figure out how to become her honourary grandchild because she sews beautiful gifts for her 12 grandchildren at Christmas and throughout the year. Though she makes some pretty fine lotions and other beauty products, there is so much more to her. Her nickname is Sunshine, though not all of her life has been exactly sunny, and her care for others is shown in part by the beautiful things she creates (Connie’s blog is here, if you are interested in reading any more of her story).

In the dark of winter and in the dark of life, it is good to take care of yourself, and it is good for us to take care of each other. Body butter is a small part of that. Homemade from just a few pure ingredients, it is kind to the earth and very kind to bodies. It nourishes dry, winter chapped skin. It makes a bath or shower feel more like a spa session. The scent, depending on the essential oils, can invigorate or soothe, snap you awake or chill you out. Body butter whipped up in a small jar packs a lot of pamper punch.

Spending time with people who make music or make you laugh or beat you in a board game can also raise your spirit, wake you up, or help you survive a season.

So my 2 ingredient recipe for taking care of yourself this winter would be:

  • get with someone who makes you laugh or smile or think happy thoughts
  • get yourself some body butter


Body Butter

  • 1 cup shea butter – I used Now Solutions, organic
  • 1/2 cup coconut oil –  I used Nutiva, organic, unrefined, cold pressed
  • 1/2 cup sweet almond oil – Now Solutions, expeller pressed
  • a few drops, or more, essential oil of your choice although I decided to stay scent-free for this first batch

Melt shea butter and coconut oil in the top of a double boiler. Remove from heat and let cool for 30 minutes.

Stir in almond oil and any essential oils.

Place in freezer for about 20-30 minutes. Wait until oils start to partially solidify then whip until it is like butter. I tried to whip it after 20 not much happened – it just needed a bit more time.

Place in a clean container – it should keep for a few months.

Please note that all essential oils are not necessarily kind to skin or safe for children. Take time to check out any that you haven’t safely used before.





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