It’s time adults have an honest conversation about cannabis with the children in their lives. Author and advocate Susan Soares gives grown-ups the means to do that with her new children’s book, “What’s Growing in Grandma’s Garden.”
The lighthearted story is told from the perspective of a young boy who loves to garden alongside his grandma. Together, they learn about bugs, vegetables, and the special plants in grandma’s greenhouse.
Soares is actively raising the funds necessary to illustrate and publish “What’s Growing in Grandma’s Garden.” So far, she’s gathered just over half of her $10,000 goal.
Just Say KNOW
“What’s Growing in Grandma’s Garden,” Soares’ first book, is based on a true story.
“I am a grandmother,” she explained and is about to welcome her fifth grandchild. “One of my grandsons loves to be in the garden with me,” she said.
Throughout the story, the young boy learns about good bugs and bad bugs, that fresh vegetables taste better, and that it’s fun to garden.
“Grandma has a special plant in her greenhouse,” Soares explained, “we can look, but can’t touch it.”
The young boy wonders why grown-ups can have things that kids cannot.
“What’s Growing in Grandma’s Garden” is just as much a lesson for adults as it is for children.
The book teaches adults how to talk to children about “grown-up vs. kids issues,” Soares said. “Hopefully that will inspire conversations about cannabis and other grown-up things.”
“Knowledge is power,” she said. “In general, we don’t give children the credit they deserve.”
“When you hide something from kids… that attracts them to it. When you lie, you teach them they can’t believe [you],” she added.
She said that’s one of the biggest failures of the D.A.R.E. program — and why her foundation, C.A.R.E. mocks the anti-drug campaign motto with their own — “Just Say KNOW.”
“Kids KNOW, they aren’t stupid,” said Soares. It’s time for an honest conversation about cannabis.
Soares hopes to see the book in every retail cannabis outlet. “If you are a cannabis consumer, if you have children in your life — niece, nephews, students, etc. — you have an obligation to educate them on the whole cannabis issue.”
Gustav Davies, a Swiss-based artist and illustrator, created the book’s visuals. He said he chose to create the graphics for the story because “[Soares] has something to tell — I like that.”
Davies illustrations are mature yet whimsical. In order to achieve Soares’ vision, he explained, “I’m trying to work as unselfconsciously as possible.”
The advocate-turned-author said the inspiration for “What’s Growing in Grandma’s Garden,” came in 2017 after an appearance on the Southern California radio show, The Woody Show.
“Woody asked me, ‘how did you talk to your children about cannabis?’ I didn’t have a good answer,” she said, admitting she hid it. “I did not like that answer, it really bothered me.”
Soares asked others in and outside of the cannabis industry the same question. She found, “nobody talks their kids about cannabis, even now. Especially people in the industry.”
She wonders where the “what about the kids?” hysteria comes from. “We’re still waking up. Maybe we have PTSD from the drug war,” she said. “We are not owing it as we should.”
One moment stands out to Soares; it came after speaking with an unnamed canna-prenuer. “He said, ‘you are too early, people are not ready for a children’s book about cannabis’.” In the same breath, the source said his eight-year-old made the ‘best Manhattan he’s ever tried,’ Soares explained.
She knew then she needed to write a kid’s book that will “inspire grown-ups to have the conversation about cannabis.”
Cannabis as a Catalyst
Though Soares is a cannabis advocate, she was not always a proponent for the plant. In fact, she once called the cops on a group of teenagers smoking from a pipe in her (now, former) Chino Hills neighborhood.
At the time, Soares described herself as a devout Mormon, and leader in her Orange County church community.
“It took me five years to get out of the Mormon fog,” Soares said. Her relationship with cannabis was a catalyst.
Soares, a then “Conservative Republican,” suffered serious injuries during a church broom hockey game.
“I was about to score my third goal when someone tripped me,” she explained of the 1993 incident. She went head first into a cement cinder block, which knocked her unconscious, blew out her eardrum, and triggered a migraine that lasted two years.
The pain was intolerable. “I didn’t live a moment without pain,” she said, “I went to chiropractors, my Mormon doctor, Scripps’ Clinic… I was given more and more opioids, but found no relief.”
Coupled with the stress of a divorce, Soares felt desperate. “I contemplated suicide, but knew I had three kids relying on me.”
“My neighbor and I who garden together mentioned that cannabis could help my migraine situation,” she said.
Soares was scared — but eager to find relief. “I knew my community and my family would turn their backs on me if I used cannabis, but I didn’t have a choice. I didn’t have any other options left.”
She tried cannabis, and “after six weeks of use, my migraine was gone, never to return again,” she said.
Consequently, the “worst did happen,” Soares continued, “my family did not talk to me, and I was ostracized from the church community. But I needed to be alive for my kids.” Cannabis gave her the ability to do it.
From then on, she made it her life’s mission — starting after her own children reached adulthood — to educate others about the plant. She went on to found the nonprofit organization, Cannabis Awareness Rallies and Events (C.A.R.E.), which aims to educate people about cannabis.
New G Pen & B Real Collab Seamlessly Fuses the Best of Cannabis Culture
In these days of uncertainty and social distancing, it’s refreshing to finally see some good news. Two pioneers of cannabis culture, Grenco Science (G Pen) and Cypress Hill frontman B Real have joined forces to launch a range of co-branded products.
“B Real has been a cultural force in both music and cannabis, and together with Grenco Science, we are reinventing the cannabis experience for our customers who have come to expect quality and innovation like only Grenco Science can provide.”
Grenco Science’s new partnership with the critically acclaimed artist and entrepreneur behind Dr. Greenthumb’s Dispensaries will see a line of products introduced to the market, that is set to include co-branded product offerings and fully integrating the G Pen line into Dr. Greenthumb’s Dispensaries with custom build-outs in California.
Sex & Sinsemilla: The Pleasure Enthusiast on Using Cannabis to Reduce Pain During Sex
For many a cannathusiast, sex and weed make the best of bedfellows. From helping you unwind and taking you out of your head, to increased sensation and pleasure, for some, the herb can be a natural aphrodisiac. An entire sub-category of cannabis products has been developed to help people enjoy sex more, whether it be to reduce pain during sex or to increase their connection with their partner.
However, there is also research that suggests smoking herb increases orgasm length, raises sperm count, that cannabis improves their experience and people who partake in weed also partake in sex more frequently.
Enough sexy data talk. Valentine’s Day seemed like the right time to debut the sex and sinsemilla advice column from Cara Cordoni, Cannabis Aficionado’s resident Pleasure Enthusiast, who will be answering your questions around cannabis, intimacy and sex, as well as offering up product reviews and suggestions to help you maximize your sexy times.
Dear Pleasure Enthusiast,
I want to have a sexy night with my partner, but I’ve been experiencing pain during penetration. I’ve heard that cannabis can help… can it?
– Sexy ‘n Suffering
Dear Sexy ‘n Suffering,
You’re not alone in experiencing pain during sex — and the first order of concern is to explore the root cause. Has there been an injury? Are you emotionally comfortable and safe? Is there an underlying condition like an infection, endometriosis or fibroids? Have you been to see a medical professional? Understand the source before addressing the symptoms. Once you know what’s up, then yes, cannabis could help reduce pain during sex.
Many of us gals feel pain due to lack of lubrication, which can be addressed with relaxation, foreplay and the use of a sexual lubricant like Intimate Oil by Privvy Peach, Smooth Operator by Quim, Awaken by Foria or Quiver by HerbaBuena.
These lubes combine cannabis, in the form THC, CBD, or both and known herbal aphrodisiacs like passionflower extract to provide pelvic relaxation, increase blood flow and reduce inflammation. Many women experience enhanced sensitivity with these infused lubricants, as well. Quim is aloe vera based and safe with latex, while Foria is coconut oil-based and not latex friendly. Luckily, there are many options on the market in legal states, or with CBD for everyone. I always recommend a patch test before applying to your privates. And if the first one you try doesn’t suit you, don’t give up, try another as each is unique.
I applaud you on your journey of pain reduction and pleasure enhancement.
The Pleasure Enthusiast at Work
QUIM: Smooth Operator
Squirt squirt; a slippery, opaque, white liquid coats on my fingers. Smooth Operator reminds me vaguely of semen, which is both titillating and disturbing. I apply it liberally to myself for a solo test flight. I wait for the 5-7 recommended minutes for the serum to penetrate and take effect feeling hopeful and skeptical. Yet as I read Quim’s elegant pamphlet, the slippery serum feels fantastic on my clit and labia and I notice that blood flow is visibly increased. Everything is gently engorging and I like it.
Foria: Intimacy CBD Lubricant and Awaken
I apply four squirts of Awaken directly to my vulva. I like the smell: it’s faint, the slightest edge of thin mint. The feeling is almost immediate, a coolness, very subtle and engaging, then a warmth. I see and feel blood flow increasing.
I then pour Foria’s clear coconut oil-based lube into my palm — it’s messy, some runs down the bottle. Coconut oil is my preferred lubricant when there’s no latex involved, so this liquid oil feels nice. After some experimentation, I find Foria’s products are super helpful with anal play, where the relaxing and slightly numbing qualities work best.
Do you have a question about sex that you’d like the Pleasure Enthusiast to answer? Get in touch: email@example.com.
Cannabis Aficionado’s Guide to a Luxurious Valentine’s Day
Treat yourself or that special someone with the Cannabis Aficionado guide to partaking in a luxurious Valentine’s Day. From precious jewels to pleasuring lubes, silky robes to stylish home decor, the dankest weed to delicious chocolate treats, there’s something for all you lovers out there.
Lovers Edition combines five herbal aphrodisiacs with cannabis to create what they call “the best sex drug in the world.” It’s formulated for both a physical and psychological high, working to increase blood flow while also helping you relax and get out of your head.
This multi-aphrodisiac blend is formulated for people with vulvas, to enhance tactile sensation and pleasure while decreasing tension, discomfort and dryness.
Genifer Murray and Glenn Murray are expert jewelry makers as well as being passionate cannabis advocates. This beautiful sativa leaf pendant necklace is artfully crafted from 14kt gold and is available in a variety of sizes.
Jacquie Aische designs jewelry with the intention of empowering women. Join her tribe with these stunning Dream Catcher Hoops from her Sweet Leaf collection.
The Ganja Urn from Jonathan Adler’s Botanist collection is the perfect bougie scene-stealer — a must-have for all cannabis aficionado’s to stash their secrets.
Maria Valentino is a cutting-edge formulator and leader of green beauty and wellness for conscious consumers. This statement ring from her fine jewelry collection features pave diamonds, emulating the plant’s natural trichomes, and is set in 14k gold.
House of Saka
Toast to love with House ofSaka’s luxurious sparkling pink wine. Based on grapes from Napa Valley’s terroir and infused with the finest craft harvest. The resulting experience is intended to leave the imbiber feeling invigorating, clean and relaxed.
Mario Guzman aka Mr. Sherbinski grows some of the finest cannabis you’ll ever experience. His Pink Panties cultivar is a cross of Burmese Kush and a Florida Kush backcross. It expresses dense, medium-sized buds that reek of tart and tangy citrus alongside a strong floral bouquet.
White Fox on this planet is to formulate, alchemize and create specific effect driven medicine with the intention of showing you your own true greatness. Using a 2,000-year-old ayurvedic formulation, they have developed vape pens to increase your sexual energy and sensitivity.