The Women In Cannabis Who Keep Me Lifted


Last night I attended MJBA Women’s Alliance ‘Power To Influence’ at the Sorrento Hotel in Seattle, WA. Surrounded by lady politicians, business owners, advocates, moms, and grandmas I had my spirits lifted and was reminded why I am sitting here right now plinking on a keyboard about cannabis.

When I joined my first women’s cannabis group, a couple of years ago, I didn’t have my face on my blog, any kind of social media around it, and was nervous to come out publicly as a cannabis blogger and user. It was then that I attended a party with Washington Bud Company’s, Shawn Denae, and expressed my concerns about having my face attached to marijuana. She gave me a look I’ll never forget and told me that they are all putting themselves way out there so if I mean what I’m doing, then go for it. The very next day I updated my blog to include a picture of myself and never looked back. I’m not sure she even knows she did that for me and I am forever grateful that she did.

But this is what I’m talking about. When I hang around these women in cannabis I am spoken to candidly while still feeling supported and I am reminded that I am not alone on this path. I have a whole tribe of powerful women in my camp who want to see me succeed and celebrate with me.

Knowing the women in cannabis that I do has definitely changed me. When I see how brave, ambitious, and hard-working they are I feel empowered to do more.

Also, one of the best things about spending time in the cannabis industry is that it has expanded my personal vision of what it means to be a female. Cannabis ladies are a special breed and by bringing together our diversities, we are the ones who will also be lifting the world into normalization after legalization.

Exercise, Scoliosis, And Cannabis: There Is No Space For Ego


Remember the things you were able to physically do a decade ago? Can you still do them? This week I rediscovered an old photo album of a yoga photoshoot I did a decade ago. It was beautiful but it was also eye opening because I no longer lived in the same body that could do those poses.

The scoliosis I have been dealing with since age 10 told me back then that it would be wise to capture my spine movement I was able to physically do because one day I may not be able to do them. I never imagined that day would seemingly come so fast.

As I was looking at these old photos, I realized that I could now only do about half of the poses the way they looked in the pictures. Major ego check.

Then I started thinking about how different it was when I used cannabis way back then. I would smoke weed before I exercised to enhance my workout and be able to focus and feel on a whole new level.

Ego check number two…

These days I’m using cannabis not to enhance my workout but to actually be able to do the workout. When I get up early in the morning my back doesn’t want to workout and will protest by being sore and tight. I usually apply a cannabis topical to my torso, take some kind of CBD edible or tincture, and vaporize flower when I have it. Having to modify my intention with why and how I use cannabis is a reality check.

My morning workouts themselves have changed and are rarely high energy because my spine doesn’t want that. It wants gentle, low-key, and mellow first thing in the morning so I usually end up doing stretches and core work.

This whole experience of having to maintain a scoliotic spine is a humbling one. I have only so much control over it but it is still my job to care full-time for this little body while I live in it and be able to learn from the lessons that it provides me. Tuning in with cannabis and exercise allows me to keep the relationship with my body a positive one although that remains a major task.

If you are dealing with scoliosis or back pain I encourage you, as I do myself, to just keep moving. Respect the messages your body is sending you in its pain. Use cannabis with positive intention so you can live a higher quality of life and wellness. And then release your ego as soon as possible.


Raw Cannabis Juicing: You’ll Probably Have To Become A Grower

Weedgoat in the Raw Cannabis Juicing Garden

Weedgoat in the Raw Cannabis Juicing Garden

Raw cannabis juicing is a lifestyle discipline that I wholeheartedly embrace, but it requires a lot of effort and plants. For the past few years I have relied on the kindness of other cannabis growers to supply me with raw cannabis they were otherwise discarding or allow me into their gardens to defoliate their plants. This year, however I started tackling the idea that I can grow my own for juicing.

The very idea of growing my own is an intimidating one. I don’t have much privacy or property and I live in a rainforest that only gets sunshine in the summer. Plus my research on what is required for a raw juicing routine has suggested that I need to have 30 plants so as to be able to juice one a day. This is not legal or sustainable for me. So, I’m trying to see what kind of raw cannabis experience I can have with a few plants and if it would still be beneficial.

Last summer I grew a couple of plants but they did not produce much, were stricken with spider mites and powdery mildew,  and turned out to not something I wanted to eat. This year has been a different story.

My garden didn’t get any bigger, but my plants sure did. I started with healthy clones in nutrient rich, organic soil and they grew into trees that I have had to work to keep smaller than my fence so as to keep them as discreet as possible. I also planted mint, sage, and lemon balm around my garden as a potential bug barrier. So far any growing issues have been minimal and spider mites are non-existent. That in itself feel like a huge accomplishment.

I water them with filtered water only when they need it and have been feeding them things from my kitchen that I would feed myself to manage a healthy gut microbiome, nothing fancy or store bought. The other day, for example, I made a smoothie for my plants made of sauerkraut, kelp, mushrooms, and molasses- they loved it. I didn’t learn that recipe that from a book, I’m just experimenting with what feels right and learning how to read plants and developing my own growing style.

I’ve been picking leaves off of my plants once or twice a week, stripping the foliage way down and frequently feeling like I may have over plucked. Each time, though, the plants will bounce back and pump out even more leaves. This plant really does grow like a weed. While I am not getting enough matter off of them to be able to take multiple servings every single day, I have been able to get enough to at least blend with daily and that in itself feels beneficial albeit energetically different from taking multiple raw cannabis juice shots every day.

I feel somewhat accomplished to have gotten this far in my cannabis journey. I’m still not anywhere near where I would like to be as a grower, but having to attend to this plant has taught me tricks that I can also apply to my vegetable garden and is plugging me into the idea that I can grow a lot of my own food even in my small yard.

I’m highly grateful for all this plant is capable of and the cannabis growers in my life who have encouraged and empowered me to stand up and boldly grow my own. Can we just legalize already it so that anybody who wants to can grow and juice their own too?


Hempfest 2015: This Protestival Just Keeps Getting Better

Last weekend I attended the 24th annual Hempfest in Seattle on the waterfront of Myrtle Edwards Park. This was my third time attending the Protestival and I thoroughly enjoyed all three days there. While in the past years I have been a volunteer and attendee, this year I was there representing MJ Headline News and MJBA to capture as much of the experience as possible.

On Friday, true to Seattle weather, there was thunder and lightning and torrential downpours shortly after the park opened to attendees. I was soaked to the bone walking to the far end of the park with my boss, David Rheins, who was scheduled to speak. When we got there the speakers were all huddled under the backstage tents of the McWilliams/Black Memorial stage and there wasn’t an audience. The stage manager was still giving the mic to the speakers who were there to have their voice heard. It was there that I met Roger Tilton, Senate State Candidate from New Hampshire:

Saturday and Sunday brought much nicer weather and crowds of marijuana enthusiasts. When not hanging out at the MJBA booth, I was walking from one end of the park to another, checking out vendors, visiting with speakers and guests backstage, and making videos for Marijuana Channel One.

This Hempfest was much different than the last two in that I was able to fulfill a goal of being able to capture and share with the world this unique event in the cannabis industry and culture.

I want to give a huge THANK YOU to Hempfest for making sure I could access all I needed to and a thank you to MJBA for giving me platform that allows me to go more places and share with the world what happens behind the scenes.

Washington’s Medical Cannabis Farmer’s Markets Remain Open, For Now

With recent changes to the medical cannabis laws in Washington the future of medical cannabis farmer’s markets are looking bleak and uncertain.

One market, MMJ Universe in Black Diamond, announced this week that after years of providing a safe access point for thousands of medical cannabis patients they would be shutting down by August 8th. This announcement came shortly after a press conference by the King County Sheriff that said all medical cannabis dispensaries will need to shut their doors if they are not part of the regulated system that Washington has created for recreational use.

When I arrived at the MMJ Universe market on Saturday, I was pleasantly greeted with a sign that said, “We are staying open.” Apparently, they have been advised that they will be able to remain operating until at least October and possibly beyond.

Most of the cannabis vendors that I talked to there were relieved to hear this news but still very apprehensive to feel optimistic because of how the new laws are requiring a major cutback in what they are able to provide for themselves and other patients.

As a patient who frequents these cannabis markets, I would love to see these special places continue to operate in the state. They provide an important and safe place where people can access affordable medicine, learn about many different strains, how to use them, and regularly come together as part of a larger cannabis community.

To check out my video at MMJ Universe on Marijuana Channel One, click here:

Access To Medical Cannabis In Washington Is Changing

Access To Medicinal Cannabis Is Changing in Washington.

Access To Medicinal Cannabis Is Changing in Washington.

I started this blog because I wanted to share the challenges and triumphs of using medicinal cannabis. Back then I didn’t know many other cannabis users never mind ones who knew how to use it medicinally. Through books and the internet I taught myself how to cook with it and started eating it for my health issues.

Once I got my medical cannabis recommendation my first access to it was at a chosen dispensary 30 minutes from my house. I would really only buy cannabis flower there because the only other thing they had were edibles ‘poisoned’ with gluten, dairy, and sugar not to mention a little expensive for somebody taking multiple doses each day. From there I would take my flowers and make my own cooking oils and edibles.

These days my access looks much different. I was eventually able to join a collective garden where I not only have access to quality, organic flower but fresh leaves for juicing, and solventless concentrates. While there, I am able to learn how to grow my own garden and ways to process my own plants. This type of insight has been invaluable as a patient who, in the perfect world, would like to eventually grow all my own strain specific garden.

Through networking and visiting every medical cannabis farmer’s market I could, I found a few favorite MMJ growers and processors who I can go to for strain specific cooking oils, superfood edibles, topicals, oral care products, and suppositories at a reasonable cost. I so appreciate having these people in my life. They teach me something each time we talk and I don’t have to work nearly as hard to get the specific medicine that I need. I can give them a list of terpenes that I need and they not only know what I’m talking about, they are able to hand me back products, not just flower, that do exactly what I need them to do.

With the changes to the medical cannabis laws in Washington, my access is also potentially changing back to the similar dispensary experience it was when I started taking it. My collective is being significantly shrunk. They are having to go from 15 plants per patient to 15 plants for the entire collective property to supposedly service everybody involved. While I work with some very impressive growers, time will tell if they are able to produce enough medicine with the new limits.

My access to infused edible makers that only existed in the medical marijuana market are also going to disappear unless they get into the regulated cannabis market. The products will not likely be as cost effective or strain specific if they even exist at all. Who is going to come out with a regulated cannabis suppository? 

One more big change that affects me is the reduction of how much cannabis I am allowed to keep at one time. This could even affect the way I am juicing raw cannabis. The very way that I thrive on cannabis requires plenty of plant matter and while I don’t get high from using it like this, when available I make it an effort to consume several ounces of cannabis in one day if I am taking in in raw juice form. If I couldn’t juice anymore, it would feel like a step backwards in my health management.

The future of medical cannabis in Washington seems to be changing daily and keeping up with these changes to protect myself and my family has been weighing heavily on me. Where I may have felt carefree about using cannabis in the past, for the moment, I feel somewhat oppressed as I am learning and adapting to the changing cannabis laws.

While I’m trying to maintain a positive attitude about the fact that I still have safe access to legal cannabis, I can’t help but feel concerned that my herbal medicine has been severely restricted, not because my doctor has prescribed me less but because uneducated law makers decided it made sense.


Cannabis Prevents My Suicide


Suicide and cannabis often only shows up in the media as reefer madness propaganda about people consuming marijuana edibles and either killing themselves or somebody else when the reality is that cannabis is daily helping the suicidal who are able to choose this as a treatment.

I first heard of cannabis and suicide while watching a video by Coral Reefer, where she was talking about cannabis preventing suicide by providing a valuable tool for the severely depressed. I really appreciated her openness with the subject and it opened me up to talking more freely about my own cannabis use for depression.

Then I met Patrick from Rainier Xpress, a medical cannabis collective in Olympia, who is creating a supportive medical cannabis community for  veterans. From him I learned that 22 veterans per day are committing suicide from PTSD. His hope is that all veterans will have the option to put a cannabis vape pen in their mouth instead of a gun when they get the urge to ever end their life. I admire his strengths in putting himself so out there with a very intense topic.

I am fully aware that you can use cannabis to manage depression because I do it myself. I understand that when I am feeling dark and anxious it is a physiological issue and that I will need to physically look after my brain in order to pull through that depressed state. Cannabis helps immensely to lift dark moods and the anxiety feeders that they travel with.

The idea of suicide is nothing new to me and while I have wanted to exit this body more than once, successfully dealing with it to keep living has taught me to treat myself with more compassion and stay vigilant about following a lifestyle that supports positive mental health. Going through a bout of severe depression and anxiety is scary and confusing and not at all a reflection of your perceived reality of life but more a literal lack of nourishment to the brain.

Cannabis, good sleep, regular exercise, meditation, and proper nutrition are the main daily tools I use to keep me lifted from depression, anxiety… and as dark as it is to say, even suicide. Taking care of my mental health is one of the main reasons I use cannabis because when my depression and anxiety are managed I also experience less pain and inflammation. How about that?

Stay lifted, my friends.



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