Bitterroot flower blooming near Columbus, Montana. Bitterroot (Lewisia rediviva) is the state flower of Montana. Rediviva means restored to life, referring to the plant's uncanny ability to flower profusely only after the leaves shrivel and die. It's after our toughest or most shriveled feeling times that we bloom as well.
I live in Red Lodge, Montana, on Apsáalooke lands on the edge of the Beartooth Mountains and about 60 miles from Yellowstone National Park. I descend from Portuguese and Irish people on my mother’s side and from Ukrainian, Lithuanian, and Polish people on my father’s side.
I didn't know when I moved to Red Lodge that within a few years I would start a botanical business. Looking back, it seems obvious, as well as a natural progression. I now offer 18 products, all hand-crafted in small batches using high-quality ingredients.
My life as an herbalist began in the 90's. Playing with herbs, tinctures, salves, and any natural remedy that would help with my chronic sinus issues. I experimented a lot and it paid off. I started making Stephanie's Miracle Salve in 2003, mostly for friends, family, myself, and my dogs. Over the years my salve became trusted and loved by many. Strangers would tell me it helped with their psoriasis or eczema or burns when nothing else would. At the end of the day, that's what I want to hear - that I've created something healing, that I've created something that improves peoples lives.
For a product to be healthy, certainly not harmful, and effective it does not need to have a long and complicated ingredient list. That's why I create simple, healthy, beneficial products. If anything is wildcrafted it is done so in an ethical manner and with gratitude to the plant. This understanding of the whole and gratitude for the abundance around us is also why I prefer minimal packaging and therefore minimal impact on the planet. I want my products to contain the blessings of an abundant planet and to inspire people to simplify - an action that can be joyful instead of a struggle.
Before becoming a massage therapist in 2004, I earned my degree in Wildlife Biology and worked on several Wolf projects from Minnesota to the Southwest and finally to Montana. I spent time studying River Otters and surveying White-tailed Deer, participating in Bison research on the National Bison Range, and generally tried to stay in the field as much as possible. Eventually, I made the jump to plant ecology work in South Dakota. That work only increased my love of plants and desire for more knowledge. For me, everything has led to this place. I couldn't be more grateful for the winding road and generous teachers that have brought me here.
I offer herbal and wellness consultations, Abdominal Therapy, and Spiritual Healing(check my blog posts on this site for more information on these therapies). What a journey!
Celebrate abundance, health, family, and friends!
“Most people think too much.
Get them to laugh and half their troubles and sickness will go away
and the blessed herbs will do the rest.” --Don Elijio Panti