Episode 108

Tammy Pettigrew Is Microdosing Toward Parenting Excellence

May 12, 2020 | Length: 23m 40s

WeedWeek Council member Tammy Pettigrew is best known as Instagram educator @thecannabiscutie — one of the fresh voices out of Orange County weed. Alex and Donnell chat with Pettigrew about weed’s place post-quarantine, and how microdosing edibles has been a recent key to pleasant parenting.

An educator and cannabis advocate, Tammy Pettigrew also has a MBA.
Pettigrew, who first appeared on Episode 49 of this podcast, has taken her home classroom to her garden, to further de-stigmatize the cannabis for her children.

She said weed should not be viewed as a remedy to the recent rise in domestic violence issues.

Tammy Pettigrew on Instagram

Key cannabis legislation likely shelved for 2020

Alex Halperin’s Cannabis Dictionary

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This transcript has been lightly edited for clarity.

Podcast transcript

Alex Halperin (00:04):
Welcome to WeedWeek. I’m Alex Halperin.

Donnell Alexander (00:06):
And I’m Donell Alexander.

Alex Halperin (00:08):
This is the WeedWeek podcast. You can subscribe to our free newsletters WeedWeek, WeedWeek Canada and WeedWeek California all at www.weedweek.net, and you can find us on Twitter and Instagram @weedweeknews. Subscribe and review, or like our show on Spotify, Apple Podcasts, Castro, or any of the popular platforms.

Donnell Alexander (00:27):
Our guest this week is Tammy Pettigrew, who some of you may remember from episode 49, Tammy is an educator and a parent who is on Instagram as @thecannabiscutie, dispenses practical weed information to more than 15,000 followers.

Alex Halperin (00:42):
Oh man. I can’t imagine being holed up with kids under these circumstances. It must be so hard. And we talk about that a bit on the interview. She talked about it very nicely, I thought.

Donnell Alexander (00:55):
I think for her, the social media category in some ways is her best way of communication. And some people are born for it, some people aren’t. And I actually had to have a conversation with her about whether her Instagram life is as fun as it looks, and of course she admitted, “No, life never looks like social media really when you drill down on it.”

Alex Halperin (01:19):
So, what is her Instagram life look like?

Donnell Alexander (01:22):
She’s @thecannabiscutie. And you see there’s a real educational component to it, but when she talks about her kids, it’s in a very real way. And I think she’s interested in normalizing it, but also educating, it’s interesting. She’s acting as an educator, but she’s someone with an MBA, She’s someone who’s thinking long term about how this plays out. And so actually I reached out to you about some guests and some guests who had just exorbitant amounts of followers and they lacked substance, so when you’re getting to the Instagram realm, you don’t really see that many of them. I’m glad there’s one in the parenting sphere.

Alex Halperin (02:02):
But first let’s talk about a little bit about the situation in California, which we think largely it probably reflects the situation in much of the country. Which is that the industry is largely cut out of federal relief packages and even in California where lawmakers and regulators are relatively sympathetic, things are really at a standstill and it’s really hard for the industry.

Donnell Alexander (02:30):
Very specifically, there’s an Assembly Bill 1948 which was put forward by Rob Bonta, a Democrat from Oakland and people had so much hope invested in this bill as a form of tax relief. We learned this week that that bill is not going to see the light of day anytime soon. It’s not just that one bill, that bill hasn’t had a lot of heft to it, but the calendars are different calendars between the assembly and Senate. It means that nothing cannabis related is bound to happen in 2020.

Alex Halperin (03:03):
At the same time as our business columnist Dan Mitchell recently wrote in WeedWeek, he quoted Amanda Reiman of Flow Kana who essentially said in some ways COVID is a positive development for the industry in that it forces an end to the hypocrisy, which is essentially that the industry can’t be both essential and illegal and therefore some sort of progress becomes necessary.

Donnell Alexander (03:33):
Yeah, that’s profoundly true, that statement, but we can’t get away from the fact that we have a legislative session that was supposed to be about systemic progress that’s now just going to be about getting by and nothing really changing immediately. Let me ask you a question coming out of that, in terms of industry leadership and getting to this phase where we’re not just having a sustained period of losses, who’s going to be the leader in that? Or is it going to be a politician who proposes legislation that gets us passed and lowers taxes and simplifies our rules in California in these various States? Or is the industry going to provide leadership? Are there avenues, are there lobbyists who are making a kind of difference in terms of this essential industry? How it gets to play out in American commerce?

Alex Halperin (04:22):
I mean there are certainly are lobbyists agitating in various ways for the industry’s needs, but it seems like it’s going to be a bit of a swag because everything is sort of at a standstill.

Donnell Alexander (04:37):
I just don’t see that many people who are going to be able to sustain another year or two of the status quo.

Alex Halperin (04:44):
I think everybody agrees there are going to be a lot of casualties.

Donnell Alexander (04:47):
So that’s the business. We should talk about what we’ve been going through in these interiors of our walls, our homes. Let’s have a conversation about parenting in the COVID-19 era with our guest, Tammy Pettigrew.

Music (05:17):
I want to scream so loud for you. ‘Cause I’m so proud of you, let me tell you what I’m about to do (hey mama) I know I act a fool, but I promise you I’m going back to school.

Alex Halperin (05:27):
Tammy Pettigrew, @thecannabiscutie, welcome back to WeedWeek.

Tammy Pettigrew (05:31):
Thank you for having me.

Donnell Alexander (05:33):
Welcome Tammy. I want to start with a very specific question that’s been in my head. You run episode 49 and you dropped a Bible verse. Do you remember that verse?

Tammy Pettigrew (05:43):
I do, yes. Genesis 1:29-30.

Donnell Alexander (05:47):
Okay. And what is that verse?

Tammy Pettigrew (05:50):
Then God said, “I give you every seed-bearing plant on the face of the whole earth and every tree that has fruit with seed in it.”

Donnell Alexander (05:58):
We talked about your conversations with Christians and I’m curious to know how that’s changed over the past year.

Tammy Pettigrew (06:03):
I would say it’s been about the same. People are kind of appreciative to hear a perspective about this plant because now they’re seeing the benefits and they’re understanding it’s not evil. So, I would say it helps, especially people who are strong in their Christian faith to kind of come to terms with “this is beneficial for me.”

Donnell Alexander (06:28):
So, you don’t feel like anything has changed now that we’re under quarantine?

Tammy Pettigrew (06:33):
As far as people choosing to…

Donnell Alexander (06:35):
Opening up to it? Yeah, being available to it.

Tammy Pettigrew (06:40):
Yeah, I think so. People need some kind of assistance right now. This is not anything anyone was prepared for. And I think a lot of people don’t want to be drunk every day.

Donnell Alexander (06:55):
Well, okay, I’m going to turn it over to Alex after I ask this last question. And all of this is sort of predicated on that Genesis verse because I think of all the “uncool things” we can talk about in cannabis that’s one of the more important ones. The other one is parenting and cannabis. And I feel like just from following you on Instagram and talking to you in real life, you have very specific take on that. And how has that changed since you were on in episode 49?

Tammy Pettigrew (07:23):
I think it’s changed in a sense that I’ve been much more open to talking to my kids about what it is that I do and my cannabis use. And especially during quarantine, I would say. Now that I’m about to plant my outdoor flowers or my outdoor plants, that I do want to teach my child how to also grow her own medicine, I think it’s important for them to know how to grow their own food as well. So, I would say that’s shifted quite a bit since we spoke.

Donnell Alexander (07:59):
Any particular reason?

Tammy Pettigrew (08:01):
Yeah, kids know when you’re lying to them, especially my children. When it comes to any question that they ask about childbirth and pregnancy, they know when I’m not telling the truth. So, I knew that this was something that I would rather be open about it and honest instead of kind of lying to them. It’s not a very healthy dynamic between parent and child.

Alex Halperin (08:25):
Would it be fair to say that you live in a fairly affluent milieu in orange County?

Tammy Pettigrew (08:32):

Alex Halperin (08:33):
What kind of conversations are you having with other parents?

Tammy Pettigrew (08:38):
I always am fearful when I talk to parents about it, but for the most part I would say an overwhelmingly majority of them are really open to it and it’s kind of a good time for them to then ask questions that they have, “Oh, I hear it’s good for sleep. What can you tell me about that?” And they’ve been very kind about it.

Donnell Alexander (09:01):
Let me try this COVID issue you from a different angle. How has your cannabis consumption changed since we’ve been on quarantine?

Tammy Pettigrew (09:09):
I would say I have been open to more edibles. I prefer flower, that’s just kind of how I started and just what I love. But being mindful of the fact that the Coronavirus is a respiratory illness. I do have asthma and I do kind of need to play it safer when it comes to thinking about my general health. So, I have been trying to consume different cannabinoids in different ways through tinctures, teas and edibles.

Donnell Alexander (09:42):
So how does a parent gauge whether they’re consuming too much pot? I assume edibles have changed the game in terms of how you can have them, and you know, win. But it seems like it would be an issue more than ever right now.

Tammy Pettigrew (09:55):
Yeah. I mean definitely micro dosing is the key. You don’t want to consume too much to the point where you’re passing out. In some places that would be considered negligent. So, making sure that you’re properly measuring your edible consumption unless it’s towards the end of the night and everyone’s going to bed soon. You have to really be mindful. You have to be sharp, there’s still children, anything can happen, and you have to be all the way ready for that at all times.

Alex Halperin (10:23):
You’ve got a bunch of different businesses. How has the pandemic affected them?

Tammy Pettigrew (10:29):
I would say for me it has kind of actually helped. I have two kids that I’m shoveling to practices and schools, so I’m constantly driving all day long it seems. But now with everything kind of stopped, I was able to actually focus, set schedules, meet those demands without all of the hustle and bustle of motherhood and extracurricular activities.

Alex Halperin (10:56):
Can you tell us a bit about what you’re working on?

Tammy Pettigrew (10:59):
So right now, I actually am building out my cannabis cutie education courses. I’m doing it on a teachable platform where I’m catering to the millennial woman who is an entrepreneur and needs to either educate herself on cannabis science, history and laws. Because if you’re going to be a cannabis business, I believe you also need to advocate for the plant. And then just in general, not many people had access to higher education, like myself. I have an MBA and I have an undergraduate degree in business, so I want to be able to translate all of those fundamental ideas and theories to them, to help them really gauge what it is they need to know to run a successful company. And during the COVID pivot, I think it’s essential right now.

Alex Halperin (11:49):
As somebody with an MBA, a lot of people are saying that COVID is sort of accelerating the professionalization of the industry. Is that something you agree with?

Tammy Pettigrew (11:59):
I think so, yes. Well, this industry, if you think about the past, what has happened with this country when something like this has happened, we’ve had to create jobs, we’ve had to create industry. So, really, I think the cannabis industry has to position themselves for the future. We’re going to need something to fall back on and we’re going to need to generate revenue to kind of get ourselves back to where we were or close to it. And right now, is a great time for us to get it together. I think that was already in motion, but I think COVID is accelerating it.

Donnell Alexander (12:33):
When you mentioned things like this before that have happened and there being a reaction like this, where are you talking about Wars? Because clearly there’s not been anything exactly like this.

Tammy Pettigrew (12:43):
Yeah, the new deal, creating jobs in the new deal and then also the 2008 package as well. So, we have to do something to get ourselves back out. And I think this industry, I mean, it’s already in existence. Federal legalization is a possibility.

Donnell Alexander (13:02):
We’re also contending with the legislative slowdown in both Sacramento and probably across the country just because COVID has taken over everything and state Houses. So that’s an issue to contend with. I wanted to just take it back a little bit. Well, maybe this is a hybrid question about you and your daughter in growing. I assume you’re not out at the beaches in orange County protesting for your right to garden. But your outdoors is growing or at least that’s part of it. What are you doing? Is that just a philosophical thing you’re trying to pass on or is it a lifestyle professional thing down the road? Where do you look at growing in terms of a family unit?

Tammy Pettigrew (13:40):
I look at it from a lifestyle perspective. I mean, she’s going to learn how to make creams for our skin and for pain and she’ll see me making medicine in the kitchen. So, for me it’s more a lifestyle thing. I don’t want to push the business onto my child, but absolutely for her own benefit, if she knows how to do this for herself in the future.

Alex Halperin (14:06):
There’s been a lot of talk about how people are sort of reaching back to skills we no longer use and just making things we no longer make. And it’s interesting to hear that about that happening with cannabis. Do you have other friends and colleagues who are doing similar things?

Tammy Pettigrew (14:23):
You know, I have followers that send me pictures of their kids trimming cannabis or they already have the noses to kind of detect what terpenes are in the flowers. And I just thought it was so beautiful. I have removed the stigma from the plant, but I guess I hadn’t done it for my children and seeing these people be open enough to share this experience with their family and really just educating their child the way before the public can, really inspired me.

Alex Halperin (14:54):
We should clarify that we don’t endorse cannabis use by those under 21. Certainly, learning about the plant and just, I think having a garden in some ways is a really nice thing to do right now.

Donnell Alexander (15:07):
Absolutely. When we were at the Weedies, I think the last cannabis event around, I met a family, actually a mother and daughter from Colorado. We were talking about the industry and her daughter is working in the fields up North. And I thought, I don’t know if I’d want my daughter, she is a very young looking adult young woman, but I thought, I’m not really sure I’d want my daughter working in that industry. I mean, not because of cannabis, but because as I understand it, and I don’t know if we get to talk about these things on the WeedWeek podcasts, not everyone’s just smoking pot when you get into growing and all that and trimming and that sort of thing. Would you want your kid to go into the industry?

Tammy Pettigrew (15:48):
Kids going into the industry?

Donnell Alexander (15:50):
Would you want your kids going in?

Tammy Pettigrew (15:52):
As long as they were properly educated. I mean, my kids know that this is not good for their brains and it won’t be good for their brains until they’re done developing. My five-year-old can tell you that, I think you’re properly educating that. But again, I think maybe also handling non-THC plants would probably be ideal. Just like serving alcohol, you have to be 21 to do that. So, I think that there needs to be limits if they’re going to be dealing with parts of the plant that are psychoactive.

Donnell Alexander (16:28):
Yeah. I definitely feel like people who are 18 ought to be able to work with CBG.

Tammy Pettigrew (16:33):

Alex Halperin (16:34):
What’s something you’re looking forward to in the next couple of months? I think now the world is beginning to open again and that’s exciting but it’s also a little scary. But what are you excited about?

Tammy Pettigrew (16:47):
I’m excited. Well, one for the industry, I’m excited to see kind of the change. There’s definitely going to be some new brands I think popping in. I’m kind of wondering what’s going to happen with the brands that were already on that thin line. And then just for myself, I’m excited to see kind of what the world is going to be like Post-COVID. I know there’s no way it can be the same. So that’s what I’m most curious about and excited to see how we operate as a society.

Donnell Alexander (17:16):
We talked a little bit about this off mic just before we got started, but you know, there are some impacts that people are going to be having. I heard this amazingly weird thing that men around the country, Alex, tell me if this is happening for you, because it’s happening for me. Men around the country are having problems with their hips, painful hips right now and you know, I’m thinking about like our sense of space and obviously we’re not going into restaurants the same way and movie theaters and ballgames and all that stuff afterwards. Are there things we’re going through right now that are striking you as remarkable in terms of how we’re going to come out of it? We’re going to come out of this differently?

Alex Halperin (17:52):
Oh man. Well I’m grateful that I don’t have painful hips.

Donnell Alexander (17:58):
Ah, they might put me down.

Alex Halperin (18:01):
You know, I think things are going to be different. I just don’t know how. I think there’s an opportunity for us to reorient ourselves in important ways and I hope that happens.

Donnell Alexander (18:16):
Well. Can I ask this thing about where we are right now? It’s impossible to have people tell the future, but I’ve been hearing a lot about spousal abuse under these circumstances because there is a detention and depression and all of that. Do you see that cannabis has a place in that part of dealing with this crisis that we’re in right now?

Tammy Pettigrew (18:37):
Do I see that? Cannabis helping domestic violence issues?

Donnell Alexander (18:41):
I mean, in solving it or could it possibly be a cause? What do you think its role is in that?

Tammy Pettigrew (18:47):
I’m unsure because typically you don’t see a cannabis user consume cannabis and then become violent. And that’s not to say that that doesn’t happen, but I also don’t believe that cannabis is going to stop any toxic behavior either. So, I don’t know what role, if any, it plays in that, but I think a lot of situations are coming to highlight. I think a lot of people are now kind of figuring out, “Is the way that I’m living my life beneficial for me?” I think this crisis is highlighting that for a lot of people in situations. And I hope that cannabis can help them through that.

Donnell Alexander (19:27):
Yeah. I was really actually a little surprised to hear you say that you don’t think it can stop toxic behavior. Do you think that in all contexts?

Tammy Pettigrew (19:37):
I think that has to be a rewiring of the behavior I don’t think cannabis can solve. You have to get to the root of why something is happening and when you figure out why it’s happening, then you can stop it. I do believe that cannabis can help in the moment, but I don’t think it’s going to fix the root of the issue. And that’s kind of where we have to be careful with assuming that it’s going to fix our problems. It’s absolutely great at helping with depression or anxiety or certain feelings, but it’s not going to take them away completely. That’s work that you have to do internally.

Donnell Alexander (20:15):
So, it’s not just that Mike Tyson smoking lots of pot. It’s that Mike Tyson is using cannabis and he went to a therapist. Do you have a cannabis highlight from this period?

Tammy Pettigrew (20:24):
A cannabis highlight?

Donnell Alexander (20:25):

Tammy Pettigrew (20:27):
I’ve just been having fun eating edibles. You almost just forget that you eat them and then when you start to feel your micro dose you’re like, “Oh wow, I’m happy, I can get through these fractions and multiplication in third grade today.”

Donnell Alexander (20:45):
So maybe we need to give teachers raises and micro doses.

Tammy Pettigrew (20:49):
You know, I really did want to buy my teacher’s daughter a case of wine or whatever she wanted after the first week of homeschool.

Donnell Alexander (20:57):
Okay. It’s funny that’s become a cliché that everyone talks about it, but I think about it. My kids are all too old for that now and I’m so glad that didn’t happen when my kids were young. Listen, we’re going to go, I want to thank you for coming on Friday to our Freezer Stash episode on Instagram live.

Tammy Pettigrew (21:16):
Oh yeah. It was such a blast.

Donnell Alexander (21:18):
Yeah. And then if that doesn’t work out, we’re not using it, but you were terrible. But I know you have an ongoing bunch of posts and insights and educating to do. Thanks for making time for us.

Tammy Pettigrew (21:36):
Yeah, thank you again for having me. It’s always a blast talking with you both.

Alex Halperin (21:39):
Thanks Tammy.

Donnell Alexander (21:41):
That’s our show for this week. If you’d like to give us feedback, go with hello@weedweek.net but before you begin that project, here’s Alex with an especially relevant insight from Twitter.

Alex Halperin (21:52):
So this tweet comes from @OliviaWilde and the tweet is: “If you’ve never been snuck up on in the dark by your child while you stoned-listened to a true crime podcast, you don’t know fear.”

Donnell Alexander (22:07):
Stoned-listened. I didn’t know that was a thing.

Alex Halperin (22:10):
Yeah. Well you know that this pandemic is creating all sorts of new realms of human experience and that’s one of them.

Donnell Alexander (22:18):
Yesterday I saw something from Tommy Chong where he said that the face of cannabis today is an old white lady going to sleep at night, getting a little help from weed. And I think he can add that because that’s a stereotype. We can also have young white mothers listening to podcasts. But yeah, we talked a little bit about how changes in behavior are going to result from us being quarantined for such a long time and maybe getting stoned and listening to podcasts will be completely normalized.

Alex Halperin (22:49):
All right. Sounds pretty normal to me.

Donnell Alexander (22:52):
Well, you’re on WeedWeek. You’re the host of WeedWeek you are not very normal. Anyway, let’s get out of here too.

Alex Halperin (22:58):
Alright. Make sure you enter our weekly contest to win an autographed copy of my book, The Cannabis Dictionary, which Forbes was nice enough to call one of the most recommended books about weed. You can enter by signing up for one of our weekly newsletters, free at www.weedweek.net. Subscribe, review, and like our podcast on Apple Podcasts, iHeartRadio, Stitcher, or wherever it is you happen to be hearing us. I’m Alex Halperin.

Donnell Alexander (23:23):
And I’m Donell Alexander.

Alex Halperin (23:25):
Our show is produced by Donnell Alexander and engineered by Larry Buhl. Alicia Byer wrote our theme music. See you again here next week.

Donnell Alexander (23:33):