Monday, August 11, 2014

Essential Oils for Back-to-School



We are already in to August, how is that possible? I remember when I was in school, the summer seemed to go by in the blink of an eye! Are you ready for another school year? Back-to-school season is the second most expensive time for parents, only behind Christmas!

Don't let the need for medications and unnecessary products (Germ-x and Red Bull?!) add to that bill. I've compiled a list of essential oils that will get you through the school year without having to worry about the germs, stress of tests, and late nights get you (or your child!) down.

Essential Oils for Back-to-School



TerraShield 

This blend of doTERRA's was made specifically for deterring bugs! Great for the playground or field trips. You can dilute this blend with a carrier oil and place in a roller bottle or fill a 1 or 2 ounce spray bottle halfway with water, top it off with witch hazel, and add 15 drops of the oil for a DIY bug repellent.

Or you can message me here and get some of my Bugs be Gone! Natural Bug Spray which is also made of essential oils.

(I haven't used TerraShield, but I've heard others say it didn't work very well for them and others who love it.)


OnGuard

 Another blend of doTERRA's, their immunity boosting blend. This blend is the first blend I really saw a difference with. Use daily before the kids are out the door to boost immunity.

Or message me here to order my Immunity Ezer blend which comes in a 10mL roller bottle and is already diluted and safe to use on kids. In addition to OnGuard, I've added lemon, melaleuca, and oregano oils for added protection.

Looking for a natural hand sanitizer? OnGuard is perfect for killing germs. I've made a product just for this, in a small spray bottle. Again, message me if you're interested. 


InTune 

This blend is great for improving focus. Can be applied daily either before or after school (for help getting through an evening of homework) or have your child take it with them to school and apply before a test.




Peppermint 

Did your mom pack you peppermints for your ACT? Mine did. Some teachers even had them on test days. Peppermint is said to help with memory recognition to help stimulate learning.




Serenity

Serenity is my new favorite blend. It smells like cotton candy (some imaginary cotton candy that smells fantastic, I guess), and quite frankly, I want to eat it. Even better than its aroma, this oil is perfect for a good night's sleep. If your child has a big day tomorrow, maybe she's stressing about a test or a big game, this blend when applied to the bottoms of feet or on the back of neck will help them get a restful night of sleep.



Bonus: Deep Blue Rub

Is your child active in after school sports? If their High School volleyball tryouts are anything like mine, doTERRA's muscle soothing blend is a must! This blend is our version of IcyHot, only better--obviously. This is perfect for sore or tight muscles! 

Do you use essential oils? What are some of your favorite back-to-school oils?

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

I'm Not Perfect, Even Though You Might Think I Am



If you've never met me in person, you won't know that I'm a 25 year old gal who's trying to find her path in this life. You might not know that I've lived in 3 states in 3 years and the struggles that come with that. You definitely don't know that my bathroom sink is coated in toothpaste and that I have ants crawling in my trash can right now.



Why am I sharing these things? 

Lately, it seems like more and more people are pointing fingers at others who "make their life seem perfect", including those of us who choose to put our lives online for people to read about and learn from. One thing I'd like to add, is that if you're friends online with someone or "following" them and you get irritated with their posts or pictures, then I think you should consider ending your online relationship. If their attempt at making their life always look beautiful offends you, why are you wasting your time looking at them? Okay, moving on and you should too.

Just because I'm not writing posts about the meals I've royally screwed up or how I burned myself from using essential oils without a carrier, does not mean these things don't happen. (Yes, they happened. I have a scar.) And maybe I should write about things like that, isn't that just another way for you to learn from me?

I'm here now to tell you this, my life is not perfect. I don't "have it all together". I struggle. I lose it. I forget. I take the convenient route. I'm human.

So, if you could see me through your screen, who would you see? 


 

You'd see a woman trying to get by. You'd see a family of two budgeting their money because if they didn't, ends might not always meet. You'd see a family who has chosen to go without some of our modern day luxuries so they can pay off college debt. You'd see an empty fridge at the end of the month.

You'd see me struggling. I don't like to be one of those people who always comes off as being busy, but I still struggle balancing my time. I have a job. I have a husband and a home to maintain. I have hobbies, including this one--writing for you, that I love. Life can be a struggle.

You'd see dark circles under my eyes, no make-up, a loose ponytail sitting atop my head, and a pimple on my chin. Even though I don't have children, I still don't put myself first. Or second. I want to please my husband, my friends, my coworkers. Days go by without me having the time or energy to take a shower. Many, many days go by without me even thinking about combing my hair or putting on deodorant (does that just make me a hippie?). I have days in which I look put together, but those days certainly don't outnumber the days in which I look, well, like me.

You'd see take-out boxes in my trash. Yes, you just read that correctly. Even though we live a life much different than almost everyone I know because of our diet (among other things), we aren't perfect. Sometimes I don't feel like cooking. Sometimes we eat supper on the couch. Sometimes, though not often, we order take out from the Thai place down the street. Sometimes I just need a break. 

You'd see dust on my shelves and stuff piled on the dining table. Sometimes I look around my house and wonder how in the world it got so messy. Not just messy, but dirty. I don't even have kids to blame this on. I can't even point the finger at the dog, he's so good he doesn't chew shoes or the corners of the couch. Cleaning is not fun for me.

You'd hear a nasty tone used toward my husband. My marriage is great, it's more than great actually. But it's certainly not perfect. At the end of the day, I married a sinner and so did my husband. We snap. We disagree. We go to bed mad. We give each other the cold shoulder. The difference between my life now and how it was before I knew Christ, is that I forgive him. I forgive myself. I have grace and mercy. I apologize.

 You'd definitely see a woman questioning herself. As I mentioned, we live differently that most people I know. We choose to eat food that nourishes our body, not just food that tastes good on our tongue. It's a lot of work. We use essential oils to maintain health and heal our bodies, along with other natural remedies. It requires education, lots of reading. We are Followers and Believers in Christ, and because of that we often don't see eye to eye with people we love. At times, we are separated from people we love who are also Christians because of things we believe differently. It's not always easy, but then again Jesus never promised a life of ease.



 I don't question my belief in God or having given my life over to him, but when you have people telling you this is the right way or that way is wrong, you question. I've learned to rely on my relationship with God for most answers. Why do I take the time to make my family meals that are nutrient-dense and real? Because I think that's the way God intended us to eat. I think he wants us to take care of the bodies he's given us and that's one way I can do that. I think he gave us animals for nourishment, but with that, I think there are certain ways of doing that that glorify him, and other ways, most of our modern day ways that simply don't. Why do I use essential oils and other remedies that are natural and have been around for hundreds if not thousands of years? Because God gave them to us. They are real and pure, and why wouldn't I want to pay a little more for something that I know is good for me? Nobody has to tell me that bone broth is good for me and is without a long list of side effects.

So, the next time you think your favorite writer is living an easy life, or your long lost friend who lives in a different country isn't struggling, think again. We share online what we think people want to see. I could be terribly wrong, but I don't think you want to come here every week and see a burnt up meal. (If you did see that, why would you trust me to provide wholesome, yummy meals?) I don't think you want to see my dirty house or hear about how my husband and I disagree on how the laundry should be folded.

But just because I'm not sharing those things, doesn't mean they don't happen. I'm not perfect, so please don't hold me on some high pedestal, give me grace. Be kind. I am different than you, but that doesn't mean I'm wrong.

So, are you guilty of judging people based on the "perfect life" they portray online?

Monday, July 28, 2014

Aussie Burger: No, you don't have to kill a kangaroo!



Inspired by a kangaroo burger at an authentic Australian restaurant downtown, we've been making "Aussie Burgers" all year. While they used half kangaroo, half beef for their patties, we usually just use 100% beef.

If you're going to use all beef, then you have to strictly adhere to the "extras" to make this burger something other than a burger. When I say "strictly" I highly recommend topping your burger with all of the following, but if you leave off one or two, the burger will still be yummy.

So, what makes an Aussie burger an Aussie burger? 


1. Beets We usually just boil ours. Traditionally though, Aussies use pickled beets. Bonus points if you're already pickling beets! I'll be honest, I don't like beets, but when we have Aussie burgers, mine is never without.

2. Grilled Pineapple I could eat a whole pineapple in 5 minutes if it's grilled. While Aussie burgers are best grilled, if you're pan frying yours, you'll also want to pan fry some pineapple slices.



3. Fried Egg This my friends is what puts this burger over the edge. A fried egg with a hamburger, really? If I ever meet an Aussie, I'm going to kiss them for this! It's awesome. I prefer my eggs over hard with this one. The burger is already huge and messy, I don't really need egg yolk flying everywhere.

Our Favorite Additions

These may not be "real" Aussie burger ingredients, but we don't eat our burgers from down under without them.
1. Coleslaw Slopping on some homemade coleslaw gives this burger some crunch and added sauce. If you aren't going to make this coleslaw, don't worry about adding coleslaw at all. Really, if you're just going to buy some slaw from the store, it's not worth it- go without.
Substitute: Spicy mayo or BBQ sauce

2. Avocado Maybe it's because we live in SoCal and they put avocados on and in everything, but some fresh avo goes great on this burger! Again, you can go without this one, but we don't!

Making Your Aussie Burgers

 

1. Make your patties using grassfed beef or use a combo of beef and kangaroo or venison. It doesn't really matter what kind of meat you use. While I'm not going to tell you how to make patties (we do something different every time), do not just slap your meat into patties. Make your patties full of flavor by adding minced onion, garlic, S&P, basil, parsley, and cayenne.

2. Cook beets. This takes awhile, folks. Start them first thing.

3. Stack 'em tall, skip the bread. I'm not sure why we think we have to put our burgers or dogs between bread. There's no flavor, it's hard to get into your mouth, and let's face it the bread you're probably eating has no nutritional value. Unless you're eating sourdough buns, skip the bread. Your burger is going to be stacked so high anyway, a bun is only going to get in the way.

Have you had an Aussie burger before? What's a must have topping in your house ?

Friday, July 18, 2014

My Daily Essential Oil Routine


Essential oils were brought into my life nearly a year ago, and my life is so completely different since then it's amazing. My husband nor I have been to a doctor (except the mandatory military check-ups for him) in a year. We haven't taken any medication either. No, not even after my husband's gums were gouged and bloody from the dentist on base. We used OnGuard and melaleuca and numb and heal his gums and he was fit as a fiddle the next day!

So, a year into this awesome, crazy life and I thought it'd be fun to tell you how I use them for maintenance, or in my life daily. Now, there are plenty of times in which I call upon my EO stash to get us through illnesses or problems or to clean my house with, but now you'll have an idea how essential oils can be incorporated into your daily life.

After you read this article you may decide you'd like to start your relationship with essential oils too!Your needs are likely quite different than mine, but this is my daily relationship with essential oils. If you'd like to set up a Wellness Consultation with me, message me here.

Morning Essential Oil Routine



*Apply Balance to neck and shoulders

 For those of us who are introverts, sometimes facing the day can be scary. Maybe you have a presentation, big meeting, or just need a little help getting through our day being around people. Balance is a great option for those of us who sometimes get nervous or uneasy. 

*Wash my face with coconut oil mixed with: peppermint, melaleuca, lavender, and Roman chamomile (this is in a jar in my shower)

I don't wash my face every day, but when I do it's with this blend and nothing else. No need for moisturizer either. I use a washcloth to rub it off while in the shower (or over the sink) and pat dry. Clean and moisturized skin with no chemicals.

*Spot treat with ClearSkin roller blend

Again, not necessarily everyday, just as needed. I've seen pimples disappear throughout the day since using this product.

*Apply homemade deodorant made with melaleuca, lemon, and lavender

The oils I use in my homemade deodorant vary, as does the recipe itself. I'm able to tolerate baking soda in small amounts now, whereas 3 months ago I couldn't at all. The three oils mentioned are great, but you can also use doTERRA's Purify blend, although it will have you smelling somewhat like a cintronella candle.

*Add lemon to water for flavor, detoxification, and mood improvement

A note of caution here, you should only use EO's in a glass or stainless steel bottle as the acidity of the oil will eat away at the plastic over time. This stainless steel one is great, I have a similar one and it came with two lids: one for cold drinks and one for hot drinks! I also have a glass water bottle like this one.

Midday Essential Oil Routine

 


*Chew on 1-2 peppermint beadlets after lunch to freshen breath 

I'm not completely thrilled with the fact that doTERRA uses carrageenan and a few other "unpronouncables" in their beadlets, but I do love the convenience of being able to pop these in my mouth after lunch (or coffee at church, who likes sitting next to the coffee drinker during worship?!) to freshen my breath. So until I get around to making my own breath spray, these will have to do. They are still going to be better for you than your average breath mint or chewing gum.

*Apply peppermint around my ears and temples for headache

I don't get headaches everyday, but when I do I'm so glad I have peppermint on hand. Be sure to keep away from eyes as peppermint is a "hot" oil and will burn the eyes if applied too close. I so love that we haven't even used ibuprofen in our house for over a year!

*Diffuse Citrus Bliss to uplift mood, get through the 3 o'clock slump, and to simply keep my home smelling lovely

Instead of pouring a cup of Jo, I use any citrus oil to get me through the day, Citrus Bliss is a great blend made by doTERRA. If I'm at work, I'll simply rub some on the back of my neck or inside my wrists. Essential oil diffusers like this one is a great tool for anyone with even one bottle of oil! Be mindful of where you apply citrus oils, they are photosensitive which means if you're in the sun right after applying citrus oils you skin could change color. Just be sure to apply them in discreet places like the bottoms of feet or inside of wrists.

Evening Essential Oil Routine 

 


*Post shower, rub melaleuca into scalp to help with flakes

Tea tree oil  is great for all kinds of skin issues. My husband and I both use it to help eliminate dandruff. Simply add 1-2 drops into the palms of your hand and rub into your wet scalp.

*Spot treat with ClearSkin roller blend

Same scenario as morning routine, use as needed. 

*Rub lavender and Deep Blue Rub on shoulders and neck for restful sleep

I carry a lot of tension throughout the day in my neck and shoulders so applying these two oils is a must for me. When I don't apply them, I wake up with a very stiff neck.

*Apply Balance blend to bottoms of feet

I actually just added this blend into my routine. Balance is doTERRA's grounding blend and is specifically designed to help our central nervous system. This blend is great for those of us who experience doubt, nervousness, or suffer from ADD/ADHD. If I don't use the lavender+Deep Blue Rub on my neck and shoulders at night, I'll use Balance.  

What are your go-to oils? Would you love to how oils can best help you? ask me about a Wellness Consultation today!