I Registered My Vegetable Garden With The State


This week I put myself into Washington’s new medical cannabis state registry. I can report that the process of having to go to a store to register is total bullshit.

Right after my regular doctor’s appointment, I drove to a retail cannabis shop with the intention of registering so I can legally grow more than 4 plants in my garden.

I had to wait about 15 minutes before I could be helped. Meanwhile dozens of retail shoppers cruised in and out while I was there. Waiting beside me was a young patient who had just got her medical cannabis recommendation that week for the first time and was about to try using for the first time for a serious autoimmune disease.

Talking to her helped to put into perspective how new patients have no idea what they don’t have access to, including education. It also was nice to share a conversation with her on such a monumental first experience. She was offered a medical cannabis consultant if she wanted one but I’m not sure how the rest of her shopping experience went.

I’m not sure because I had an unexpected meltdown as my new card was issued to me. It had the wrong plant number on it- way lower than what my doctor and I discussed. As this discrepancy was being pointed out on my form, crocodile tears just started streaming down my cheeks and I couldn’t stop them. The medical cannabis consultant helping me was trying to be so sweet without attempting eye contact. I would have to go back to my doctor to get him to sign one extra part of the form.

I left the store and had a full on anxiety spell with sweating, crying, and an inability to breathe or calm down. What the overreacting hell? 

It was a weird day. I had gotten a parking ticket, my favorite doctor told me he was having serious health issues, I was having dark premonitions, and the last thing I needed was another 3 hour tour seated in Seattle traffic so I could be a compliant frickin patient.

But it got done. My doctor was able to help me that day, the store was able to amend the registry and issue me a correct card right away. Major time and energy suck because somebody clearly uneducated about medical cannabis made rules.

When I got home from it all I made myself a fat raw cannabis smoothie, grateful to have access to it in a fresh dietary form even if I have to care for a garden and jump through a bunch of bullshit hoops in order to stay compliant with such poorly written and executed medical cannabis laws.

Cannabis remains a vegetable in my garden.



Should I Get On The New MMJ State Registry?


My life with cannabis changed last week. Actually the laws surrounding medical cannabis is what changed and I am just trying to keep up.

Another loophole has been added for Washington cannabis patients, they must now register with the state through a state licensed retail marijuana store unless they are ok with only growing four plants, paying full tax should they ever buy from stores, and not having arrest protection should they ever be dealing with law enforcement.

When I first got my recommendation five years ago I remember how grateful I was to be able to get and use cannabis legally even though the process felt very strange in how it pushed me out of the traditional western medical system to get it. It all felt like a positive thing even though there were a number of steps and loopholes to jump through to legally be able to use it.

While I still feel very grateful to legally be able to use medical cannabis I have been surrounded and influenced by many personalities with very different opinions about the new state registry.

The majority of patients have told me they are not going to participate in the optional state registry and boldly/quietly do what they were doing before the new laws were made limiting possession, home grow, and access to current available medicines. They believe that the way the registry is set up goes against our rights as patients. Not to mention they are all steaming and freshly wounded from the changes to the law without adequate places to go when the law changed. I get it, believe me. The whole thing makes me want to puke.

I also have a whole other court of people in my cannabis life who say the registry is worth the arrest protection and legal defense not to mention the “freedoms” it allows for if you grow your own.

Do I think they are going to watch me extra close and raid me because I am now on a registry so I can grow and eat my own cannabis plants? Anything is possible with prohibition. (If they are not already watching, hi, I’m TwiceBaked in Washington- law abiding cannabis patient, hemp foodie, positivity spitfire. Nice to meet you.)

Upon renewing my medical cannabis recommendation last month, I asked my doctor to indicate on my card that I need to grow more than 4 plants in order to access regular fresh cannabis juice. That was the first step of the new invasive steps I have to follow.

Next, I have to register. I’m not sure where to go that isn’t at least an hour long drive from my house and as of yesterday I heard retail stores were having issues accessing the registry and were not actually able to hand out cards. But, sometime after the long weekend I will spend time, gas, and precious energy to keep up with the law.

I’m not happy about the changes in the “Patient Protection Act” but I am trying to keep a forward thinking attitude. Despite the loopholes, the poorly executed meld of recreational and medical, the limitations, the expense, and the effort it takes to remain a law abiding cannabis patient in Washington State it is still (arguably) better than no access which is the case for much of the world.

The legal cannabis scene is a rollercoaster to be involved with. I’ve come to realize that I am better in this world using cannabis for my health and that I can personally do much more to spread the good that this plant does if I follow the rules- however full of bullshit they may be.

That being said, I also stand with and support my fellow patients who choose to stay off of the registry for their own reasons and am very curious to hear of the insanity that will likely ensue from patients who may not able to follow the rules initially because the medicine they currently use is not available in stores or they can’t afford it now because it costs way more than they have been paying.

Whatever your stance is on being on the state registry, stay safe and stay well.




Saying Goodbye To Medical Cannabis In Washington State


MMJ Universe Cannabis Farmer’s Market in Black Diamond Washington

There are less than two weeks left before new medical cannabis regulations go into effect in Washington State. For those of us who get our cannabis medicine from the current system that patients have been using since the 90’s, this is a big change nobody is looking forward to.

As I was driving out to MMJ Universe in Black Diamond this past Saturday I found tears streaming down my face thinking about this being one of the last times I would be making that sweet drive in the country to spend time shopping for cannabis in an open market environment.

I’ve been feeling a touch reminiscent about my times out at that specific market where I have met hundreds of patients and growers. Through regular market visits and attending events held there I have been able to plug in with the cannabis community.

I started going there before the adult use of cannabis was legalized in Washington State and I have been able to observe an evolution that the market has taken not only with how beautiful the grounds have become but also to how the market itself has changed over the years.

When I first started attending the market almost every table had a bong or pipe set up so you could sample their products right there. When you walked in the doors it was often a little cloudy and everybody was relaxed with their with cannabis. This was a unique shopping experience, very new to me, and very refreshing to be around. Eventually the smoking was moved outside and while that mildly changed the experience, the freedom felt and education given to patients at the market continued.

When I talked to Diedre, the owner of MMJ Universe, she said she is planning a big celebration on the 30th of June with music and vending to shed some happiness despite how sad so many of us are to be losing our beloved market.

I have much to celebrate from the gains that I have received from that market and even as the tears again roll down my face thinking that it is closing all I can do is thank Diedre and everybody involved in keeping the market going for so long and for focusing on positives and solutions at the end of this medical cannabis era.


Why Does Medical Cannabis Feel So Second Class?


One of the most fascinating and annoying parts of using medical cannabis is how I repeatedly feel treated as a second class patient or citizen for my health choices. Not only by the occasional friend but also medical professionals and even society in general.

Ask anybody who is seeking out how to legally use medical cannabis, it is a journey filled with prejudices.

First, you have to self educate and get over the stigma of being told it is a dangerous drug, used by losers and addicts with no brain cells who sit around all day playing video games and eating munchies on the couch.

Then, you have to have the talk with your doctor. In some cases you will have to seek out a new doctor if yours is uneducated about cannabis or unwilling to have the conversation with you. If all else fails your last option is to go to one of those medical cannabis clinics that staffs a doctor (often a naturopath) who will give you an evaluation and recommend cannabis if you match the state’s prequalifying medical conditions that allows them to suggest you use cannabis. You will just need to provide your current medical records that show you have been seen by other doctors, confirm your diagnosis, and show you have tried other pharmaceutical drugs before ever considering cannabis.

Now that you have your state required recommendation, which was not free or paid for by insurance, you have to start the search for your cannabis medicine. Currently there is no pharmacy that your doctor can connect you with so it is literally up to you to find a legal cannabis shop and figure out what products work best for you.

Now, you are officially out of the modern medical system and in a whole other class that is not recognized by insurance, doctors, or even the federal government as a valid and effective medical treatment.

It is not uncommon when conversing about health for people to ask me if I am being seen by a ‘real doctor.’ I can’t even begin to tell you how offensive that is on so many levels but it highlights what I’m talking about perfectly. Although I regularly see my doctor once a month, if I am not being seen by a western medicine doctor I have been given the vibe they don’t think that I am truly looking after my health very well.

I have met many cannabis patients who have been dwelling outside of the western medical system to help manage or cure their issues for years and now find themselves in a perpetual B-Class system of sorts where they are responsible for finding, preparing, dosing, even growing their own cannabis medicine. They have found that cannabis works better for them than the pharmaceutical alternatives and are willing to jump through the hoops to use a natural medicine even if it puts them on the fringe of society.

No matter how good your health insurance benefits might be, your medical cannabis is not covered by insurance and is therefore paid for out of pocket by you.

To review, it is not that hard to get medical marijuana. All you have to do find the right doctor, prove you have qualifying medical conditions, seek out where to buy it, figure out how to take it, and be able to pay for it out of pocket.

I know that to simply remain a legal cannabis patient this weird journey is not over because I currently have all of those things figured out for myself. Never mind the constantly changing laws, if I move or need to find a new doctor I will have to deal with all of these same issues again.

Cannabis may be an A-class medicine but it totally still comes with B-class prejudices.




5 Cannabis Products To Stock Up On Before July


The new changes to medical cannabis laws in Washington State go into effect in just over one month. I understand that some cannabis retail stores will be ready to service MMJ patients but the truth is they may not have many of the products currently used by those patients.

I’m taking this pretty serious because otherwise I’ll be back to making my own cannabis medicines and doing an ok job but they are nothing like the medicine from somebody who has been doing it for years and decades. Therefore, I’ll be stocking up on a few things before access changes July 1, 2016.

Here is a list of cannabis products that might be tough to find in WA for a while after July.

  1. Suppositories: Cannabis suppositories are already really tough to come by in this state despite how great they are to have in the medicine cabinet for serious body pain, maximum cannabinoid absorption, and amazing sleep. Unless you stock up or find a company who has stepped up, you will be left to make your own.
  2. Edibles: Right now you can get high dosed edibles in almost every form at reasonable prices. The available doses you are used to will change and if edibles are something that you take daily new prices may be tough on your pocketbook. It is rare to find edibles made without sugar and processed ingredients so you will likely be making your own if cost or healthy ingredients are important to you.
  3. Seeds and clones: It will be pleasantly surprising if patients will be able to buy clones and/or seeds of multiple varieties including those with high CBD. It is unclear weather we will have continued access to seeds or clones and the old schoolers I’ve been talking to are telling me to get seeds now.
  4. Topicals: The cannabis topical situation in Washington is an odd one. In 2015 the CHABA (Cannabis Health And Beauty Aids) bill was passed allowing for any mainstream store to be able to sell cannabis topicals containing less than .3% THC. The weird part is that cannabis processing companies in the 502 system cannot sell their topical products in mainstream stores even if they are not intoxicating or contain less than .3% THC. The companies who can currently sell to mainstream stores are not part of the 502 system, they will no longer be able to source their cannabinoids, and face an uncertain future even though it is deemed legal to sell their products over the counter. That mucky situation will require more legislation but until then you may want to stock up on the Cannabis Basics and the Kush Creams that you can’t get in 502 stores. It is possible they could suffer a lag in production while sourcing gets figured out.
  5. CBD and Strain Specific Products: If you use CBD products that are strain specific with just the right ratios of CBD:THC for you, stock up on those and start searching for companies that may already be making those products in the current legal market.

Basically, everything is what you want to stock up on. Just remember that the amount you are legally allowed to store in your house will also be reduced in July so mind your locker weight.

I spent last week being super social and visiting patients and growers all over Washington. Everybody is feeling the strain of these changes. I am inspired by those who will not be going down without a fight insisting that their current access is necessary for the sick people they look after. I agree, it is necessary to stand up to these new changes especially if they don’t support your health and wellbeing.

And so, I will write on, I will protest, I will help others and together we will not only prevail but heal and transform this momentarily bleak era with positive workable solutions.



Cannabis Mamas Will Be Criminals July 1


NORML Women of Washington May 2016

I’m fresh from the monthly NORML Women of Washington meeting held on the second Saturday of each month at Uptown Espresso in Westlake, Seattle.

I felt some very real anxiety during the meeting when we were talking about what happens to cannabis patients in July. As far as we knew, there are only a few stores that will be set up to provide to cannabis patients when the new laws take effect.

This informed group of cannabis patients, caregivers, and mothers to patients was unable to give a good answer as to where they will be getting their cannabis medicines, come July 1. Correction, they knew where they would be able to get it still but they would become criminals if they did so.

Right now most of us have been getting our medicine from the cannabis farmer’s markets, patient collectives, or medical cannabis shops that had set up under the old laws and are now shutting their doors. We have access to a large number of unique strains, high CBD cannabis, plus specialized small batch tincture, topical, and concentrate artisans. Anything you can imagine I can get already made or I know a gal who can do that. However, the people who have been honing their cannabis crafts and providing to patients for years are now going to be criminals if they keep doing what they are doing without merging into the legal cannabis market.

It is not that we don’t embrace change or want to comply with the new laws, at this point it appears to be an access issue. We have yet to find the medicine we are accustomed to in the new legal market. While this may not seem like a big deal for many, this becomes a very serious issue when there are adults and babies literally being kept alive with specific cannabis medicine.

Imagine if all the drug pharmacies in the state but a few were able to provide for even a couple of months. It would be pill popper pandemonium. 

The stores that sell medical cannabis will be staffed with a state certified MMJ consultant and register you with the state through their system. I have not began to navigate the registry system but I will for sure let you know what it is like. So far, I don’t like it.

The NORML Women of Washington are having a protest on June 30th at Union and 6th in Seattle at the I-5 entrance from 4pm-7pm to demonstrate the fact that we all would become criminals on July 1 if we do not conform to the new limitations being imposed upon us and how it impacts families in Washington. Join Us! 

Over the next 6 weeks I’ll be going to the cannabis farmer’s markets in Black Diamond, Tacoma, and Olympia  as often as possible until they have their final events and shut their doors. It’s a special culture I’m sad to see change and I hope to capture and share as much of it as possible before it is gone.

Through the anxiety of the whole situation, I still feel positive and feel fired up to spread the word that these changes are coming fast and you need to get prepared.




July Is Coming: What Will Cannabis Patients Do?


Coming on July 1, 2016 are major changes to the medical cannabis laws in Washington State. As a cannabis patient, I’m feeling a level of heaviness and uncertainty because the changes affect the way I currently access cannabis.

The changes are across the board from how much I am allowed to have on me, how much I can grow, how much I will pay, whether I want to be on a state registry or not, and where I can purchase my cannabis.

What I can grow will be reduced from 15 plants to 4. The amount of flower that I am able to carry on me will go from 24oz to 3oz. No more patient to patient sharing…and the list goes on.

I currently get a large portion of my supply from the medical cannabis farmers markets and occasionally from one collective storefront near my house that I have frequented for years now. That store is likely getting turned into a retail store with a medical endorsement to service patients who are part of the state registry.

Currently, my least favorite choice is getting cannabis from a store but soon that will be my only option. If I choose to not be on the state’s registry I’m not going to be getting any tax breaks and I would not be able to purchase as much. Regardless of whether or not I get a tax break, I’m pretty sure I’ll still have to pay way more than I’m paying now.

I plan to grow my own this summer but I’m not sure how I feel about being on a registry to be able to grow more than 4 plants.  4 plants won’t allow for much raw juicing so I would certainly want to get permission from my doctor to grow more than 4 plants if I do get on the registry.

Another word about the registry, a medical cannabis authorization does not provide protection from arrest unless you are entered in the medical marijuana authorization database and hold a recognition card. That certainly is an incentive to be on the registry but it once again of feels like patients are being treated as second class citizens.

I’ve been asking other current patients what they are planning to do and they have given me a large variety of answers. Most patients who shop at the farmers markets don’t know where they will go for medicine in July or if they want to be on a registry either. Some say they will grow their own, a few have said they will join the registry, and others have said they are making their connections now to have a guy who can take care of their cannabis needs.

In asking providers what they are planning to do I get a gamet of answers too. Some are not sure,  some are transitioning into the regulated marketplace, and some will hand you a card and offer to become your cannabis ‘guy.’

I was once mildly excited about the regulation of medical cannabis but after watching the retail system deal with pesticide grown weed I can’t help but be concerned about the quality controls for my medicine despite this required testing. If they haven’t been able to achieve quality control in the current system that has been running for over two years, how is the newly regulated medical marijuana system going to be an improvement over the unregulated, organic, frequently tested, tax free cannabis that I have access to right now?

I continue the quest to become a master cannabis grower so I can ideally manage my own supply. I know the changes will be a tough pill to swallow for many and am curious to see if people who are sick, low income, and frequently on disability will be able to afford regulated medical cannabis not covered by insurance and what new brands will step up to provide help for those in need, if possible.

The positives at the end of the day, I still have legal access to medical cannabis to manage my own chronic health conditions and I can still grow my own.

If you need to learn more about the upcoming changes, here is a link for the Department of Health website about medical cannabis laws:


Stay safe my friends.