19 June 2023

  • Distance Reiki
  • Individual consult / tutorials for individuals in Natural Health
  • Self-published ebooks
  • Handcrafted meditation mala
  • "How To Holistic" blog
Please contact me for complete details:
Education and Certifications:
  • Bachelor of Science, Medical Science: Alderson-Broaddus University 1987
  • Co-owner / Tai Chi Instructor, Snow Tiger Inc 1998-2000
  • Reiki Master-practitioner certification, Traditional Usui Style, 2000
  • U.L.C. ordained preceptor, 2005
  • Ph.D. Natural Health, Clayton College of Natural Health, 2011
  • Treasured Poems of America anthology, Sparrowgrass Poetry Forum 1994
  • "Herb In Plain Sight" Point of Light Magazine 2000
  • Reiki and Relaxation (academic dissertation 2011, general audience ebook 2021)
  • Sending Stones Reiki - upcoming title
  • Bead Mindful: Introduction to simplified meditation - upcoming title


05 December 2022

December 2022

 The blog will remain on hiatus until January 2023. 

Please contact me at RondaJSnow@gmail.com with any questions or comments

Thank you and Happy Holidays!

09 September 2022

Closed September 7 - 23, 2022

Reiki and Natural Health services will be closed September 7 - 23, 2022

Please follow the blog as pages and posts will still update through that time. 

Thank you! - Ronda

27 August 2022

Flu vaccines - a holistic point of view

* This post was originally written in the long-ago before time of 2012. It's held up pretty well, all things considered. The good news is that human physiology hasn't fundamentally changed in those 10 years even though it seems like the whole world changed in 2020. I''ve updated and reposted this in the hope of encouraging every eligible person to make every effort to get & keep your covid vaccines and boosters up to date. 

And wear your mask in public indoor spaces or anywhere that your human body gets within 6 feet of any other human body that you don't already live with. 

And wash your dang hands. 


I think it does a disservice to Holistic Health when we call it "alternative medicine".

"Alternative"  means another choice, but it also implies a mutually exclusive, this-or-that choice. I don't think health and healing works that way. No one symptom exists in isolation.. People are whole, interconnected organisms, even at the purely physical, biological level. Add to that the connections of body to mind and spirit. Add to that the connections of relationships and social functioning. Health and healing is a "big picture" venture.  "Mainstream" and "Alternative" medicine can (and do) work together - hence the names "complimentary" and "Integrated" medicine. In the totality of health care, allopathic, homeopathic and holisitic are all different paths to the same mountain top, namely facilitating natural health and healing. Only the body heals itself. Whatever approach you use, everything the doctor or healer does serves to lend our inner nature a hand, not impose some miracle from the outside. The difference comes in deciding which is the BEST approach in a given situation. Sometimes the best answer isn't "this" or "that". Sometimes the best answer really is "all of the above".

The gap between mainstream, 'scientific' Allopathic health care and Holistic Health is narrowing. The more science studies holistic health, the more common ground is found. Naturopaths were promoting hygiene long before the days of penicillin and polio vaccines. The "Nature Doctors" have been telling people to wash their hands for hundreds of years.

Vaccines are another area where modern medicine and holistic health finally agree. Now I'm sure many of you natural health fans are bristling at that and are ready to stop reading...but wait a minute first.

I realize there are religious objections to vaccines. Those are personal decisions, and outside of the scope of this post. I know there has been panic and mis-information about connections between vaccines and autism, not to mention legitimate problems with preservatives and allergies - but consider this for a minute: homeopathy.

The theory behind homeopathy is that the symptoms in an illness are actually evidence of the body's healing processes, not evidence of the disease process. So tiny doses of a substance that induces the same set of symptoms is given to help and support that inner self-healing. As the adage says,  "like cures like".

Now look at how vaccines work. A tiny bit of killed or weakened viruses or bacteria (or more recently protein fragments of a virus) are given to teach your body how to protect itself against that particular microbe and the disease that it causes. The microbe or protein fragment containing vaccine directs and helps our natural inner germ-fighting system. The modified microbe helps the body self-cure the microbe-caused disease before it even progresses enough to cause serious disease. In essence, like cures like. Sounds a little like homeopathy, doesn't it? Yet vaccines are supported by hard science, and are time-proven good medicine.

Whether you are an advocate of holistic health, or a pure mainstream kind of person - vaccines make sense. It keeps individuals healthy and it helps to keep the community as whole healthier too.

Now - go wash your hands.


26 August 2022

Easy Aromatherapy - pillow mist

A friend of mine wanted to scent her sheets with lavender oil. That makes a lot of sense. Lavender promotes relaxation, so it is a great scent for bedtime. Plus, it is all natural, so there are no worries about sleeping in chemicals or synthetic fragrance.

We thought of putting oil in the rinse, but it would take a lot of oil to leave a noticeable scent on that amount of water and fabric.

Another possibility would be to put a drop or two on a cotton ball and put it in the dryer...but then you risk oil spots on the sheets, and the heat would volatilize (evaporate) the scent very quickly, especially for a delicate top note scent like lavender.

My favorite solution is the old fashioned "pillow spray". In a 2 oz fingertip pump spray bottle put 1 oz of filtered water (not chlorinated tap water) and 1 oz of vodka (as a dispersant and preservative)  and 10 - 20 drops of your favorite essential oils. You can use one oil, or a blend of two or three oils. Obviously if you are going to use the spray on your pillow, you want to stick to relaxing or meditative scents like lavender, sandalwood, or ylang ylang. Bergamot is a good all-around stress buster, and can help a sleep blend if worry is keeping you awake. 

For pillows and your sleep area, avoid very activating or invigorating scents like citrus and strong floral scents like geranium and rose. While they do really nice things for your mood, they may distract from sleep.

If you don't want to use vodka, just use 2 oz of water, but be sure to shake the bottle very, very well before using and frequently between spritzes. Without the alcohol preservative, be sure to store the bottle in a cool dark place. The shelf life might be reduced without the alcohol, but hopefully you will enjoy and use the mist enough that shelf life won't be an issue.

Use with caution on delicate or water sensitive fabrics, like satin pillowcases and such.



23 August 2022

I don't know quite why it is. Maybe it is simply caution about the unknown, like trying a new vegetable when you were a kid.

Sometimes people act a little nervous or uncomfortable when I mention Qi Gong (sometimes spelled Chi Kung). I'm guessing it might be because of that odd group that was in the news several years ago. I don't know anything about falun gong, but I do know Qi Gong, and it is nothing to be afraid of - it's better than trying brussel sprouts for the first time, that's for sure.

Qi Gong is basically just "energy work".

Think about junior high science class. Energy can mean electricity, magnetism, or it can be anything that produces an effect. Like the bowling ball on the shelf that produces the kinetic energy that produces the effect of denting your floor if the ball falls down. Qi is a subtle energy in living beings, just like a bowling ball falling from a shelf is not so subtle potential energy followed by kinetic energy followed by a big THUD.

Gong is work, and tied to the idea of carrying energy. Kinetic energy in a hammer does the work of pounding a nail that produces the effect of building a house.

In this case the "energy" we are talking about is life energy. In China it is called Qi, in Japan it is "Ki" (like Reiki). Old Greek and European physicians like Galen, Hippocrates, and Paracelsus called it "vital force". Whatever the name, it all means the same thing.. It's that indescribable, yet to be defined special something that makes us living conscious beings instead of inanimate objects.

"Gong" (said first tone) literally translates as "work." In this case, you can think of "chi gong" is working with the life force vital energy to bring mind and body into balance to help us have better mental outlook, less stress and better overall wellness.

Qi Gong relies on visualization (focused imagination) and gentle movements to help move and balance life energy, To use Qi Gong effectively, you need a good teacher. Think about the building a house example. Anyone can learn to pound a nail with a hammer. It isn't really all that hard, but just pounding nails all willy-nilly doesn't accomplish much unless you know what you are doing. You need the special know-how of a good contractor to build it right. The same is true with Qi Gong. You need to learn to do it right for it to really work at its best and cause no harm.

I don't offer Qi Gong, but to learn more about it (or Tai Chi and Ba Gua which are closely related)  I recommend  www.dctaichi.com in the Washington DC area.. In the Pittsburgh PA area please visit www.pghtaichi.com for more information.

19 August 2022

Black Pepper: Helper at the Table

Black pepper is probably one of the most ubiquitous spices in the world, certainly in the United States. When was the last time you saw a salt shaker without its peppery twin? It hasn't been a hot topic for scientific research but there are many traditional medicinal uses for pepper

Piperine is an alkaloid in black pepper (the berry of a kind of evergreen plant) has been compared to the capsaicin in hot peppers (like jalapenos, chilis etc.). Both have anti-inflammatory properties and have been useful in arthritis for some people. It is completely counterintuitive to my mind, but the anti-inflammatory properties are supposed to help stomach ulcers too...though I can't imagine chowing down on pepper with an upset stomach.

In aromatherapy, black pepper oil is used to promote mental alertness. Ingesting it is supposed to help mental focus as well as the fragrance does. Sounds like as good of an excuse as any to throw some pepper on your morning eggs.

Taste-wise, this particular spice has a strong comfort-association for me. My Grandmother (a major influence and a heckuva good cook) was a whiz at using just the right amount of black pepper to give food flavor without blowing a little kid's head off. The best thing she made with black pepper was her hamburger gravy. I'm not talking about some fru-fru health food here. I'm talking about gut-filling, make a kid happy, old-fashioned, over-biscuits, I'm-hungry-as-a-newborn-vampire Southern gravy.

Although I wouldn't recommend a steady diet of hamburger gravy, with or without black pepper, this spice deserves its place at the table.