As we all begin yet another year, my sincere hope is that we all flourish
into the people that God created us to be.
“There are far, far better things ahead than any we leave behind.” – C.S. Lewis
Salute to new beginnings my friends - Happy New Year!!!!
I wanted to chat w/ all of you about this blog. Will you grab a coffee or hot cocoa w/ me and listen? I'd love to hear your feedback as well.
How about we kick this off with a big dose of transparency. Ready? This blog is nowhere close to being truly authentically 'me'. It's just not. The writing absolutely is of course but, I am restricted in a number of ways physically and otherwise (for a time). So, I write extremely infrequently and I choose my domain's stock photos typically. While they are lovely, I want to do my own photography, team with brands again & parlay this blog into a digital magazine. So, that's on my 'one day' list.
If that all comes to fruition, I intend to code & build it myself. Sorry Weebly.
But for now, this is just a very small space for me to share numerous aspects of wellness with all of you. It allows me small amounts of time to be creative, meet like minded people & learn from all of you as well. And I have met the most incredibly talented & gifted people in the arena of fitness, nutrition, integrative health & wellness. Best of all, I have built some pretty enriching friendships as a result.
My site intentionally has a small number of followers & I make sure that my Instagram handle never goes over 1400. I am ironically doing the opposite of what all bloggers do.....as they are all trying to increase their following & exposure.....naturally.
It is because I am still suffering & healing from illness so, I like to keep this as more of a 'wellness diary' if you will. Anything more than that would be too much for me right now. And frankly, this is such a reprieve for me to write from bed when I feel up to it.
Plus, do any of you ever miss the simple blogs? Do you all remember when the first few blogs were created? Wow, I do. I immediately loved them! Do you remember heading over to Wordpress for a peak into people's lives & expertise via whatever topics they were choosing to share?
Blogging has exploded since and it's become a hugely populated profession which I LOVE. But, for now, consider this blog a 'small town corner store'....not too many people, not gaining attention or followers but, a familiar space for all of you to occasionally chat health and wellness.
Sustainability has always been important to me but, the past several years, it's become crucial to my well-being. I have learned hacks from the best physicians & experts across the country. And I want to share some really amazing 'home hacks' w/ you!
I make my own natural/healthy/toxic free laundry detergent. I got the recipe from Alyssa Bethke on her Instagram Stories a year ago. Making my own laundry detergent has cut my yearly bill by 75% and the homemade detergent is so much healthier, toxin free & cruelty free, leaving my clothes soft & clean. Alyssa also makes her own fabric softener which I will share the recipe below too. I've yet to try the latter but, I will.
Laundry Soap Recipe:
2 bars of grated Lavender Castle Soap
1 box of Boraz
1 box of Washing Soda
Mix it all in a large gallon container. Wala, you have laundry detergent for months on end.
3 cups of White Vinegar
1/4 c of Rubbing Alcohol (or vodka)
20 drops of Essential Oil (Tea Tree or Thieves)
Place in a glass jar, shake & you are ready to go for months (depending upon how many are in your household).
Of all of the water filters available, I swear by Aqua Sauna. I am committed to the brand because of their high quality products and no, I have zero affiliation with them. They filter out more than any other filter on the market.....in - the - country folks. I recommend purchasing a water filter, sink filters & shower filter.
Get educated from Environmental Working Group on the importance of filtering your water.
Clean Beauty for Men & Women:
Deodorant. We all now know that the lead & aluminum in most deodorants cause cancer as well as clogging the lymphatic system. The challenge with most natural healing deodorants (yes, I said healing because your body will need to heal from the years of damage from toxic deodorants) is that they do not work....they either leave you dry yet w/ odor or they leave you with no odor but sweaty.
I have tried countless natural deodorants and I have only found ONE to work 100% of the time. And that is Soapwalla. Soapwalla now has options for those who are extremely sensitive to baking soda. I promise you, Soapwalla is the best. I use this one. I don't even have to reapply (sometimes for 2 days which is wild).
I am really into natural oils. And I am into not spending much money on outrageous skincare oils when I know you can get the same results for less than half the cost. I've used so many luxury brands in my former life (while in the medial arena) & when my budget changed drastically, I focused on high quality yet less expensive oils....they work the same if not better.
My favorite oils are: JoJoba Oil, Argon Oil & Echo Vie Organic Body/Facial Oil. I am also experimenting w/ CocoKind Skincare line as you cannot beat the prices of 12.00 and under for the most pure ingredient list.
IF I am able to splurge, I love the BeautyCounter Facial Serum / I purchase my BeautyCounter products through Chicago Senior Director, Bonnie Knobloch. She is fantastic at helping you choose the best products for your skin (makeup too). I really want to try the BC Facial Brightening Oil and goop by Juice Beauty Facial Oil is incredible.
I have dozens of food hacks but, today, I am going to just share one: Garlic. So many home hacks w/ good ole stinky garlic!
First off, store garlic in a dark pantry away from sunlight. If you put garlic in the fridge, it will moisten which you don't want.
Secondly, are you ready for the benefits of garlic? Garlic has vitamin B6 and anti-microbial factors which starve off respiratory infections, reduces cancer risk, treats diabetes andddd aids in healing psoriasis.
Why is garlic on this list of home hacks?
For me, I use garlic for all ear & throat infections (hence why I rarely have them). I place a garlic clove in my ear & tape it there. I sleep with it overnight and by morning any remanent of an ear or throat infection is gone.
I place garlic on any splinter which removes them.....place a garlic clove on top of the area of skin w/ the splinter, add a bandaid and wait.....within a few hours the splinter will come out naturally. YES - haha!
I blend garlic into elixirs & sometimes organic green juices because garlic contains high amounts of sulfur which detoxifies the body.
Now I learned this next hack from a website years ago!!!! And I jotted it down in a journel. I don't recall the site (that's the worst feeling) but, here are the notes I took....it's for lessening grey hair: Heat 3-4 garlic cloves with coconut oil and fresh grounded black pepper. Let it cool and apply on the wet hair as a mask. Keep for 20 minutes and then wash your hair as usual.
I've used this hack above since I was 30 years old and I think I only have two strands of grey hair to this day! Pretty cool!
What are your home hacks? There are so many more but, I figured I'd lose all of your attention if I kept going. But, there will be a 'part two' to this blog post where I discuss home cleaning product hacks and several more home & food hacks.
Hacks are so fun, budget friendly & healing for the body and environment!!!!
Note: None of my content is sponsored. All opinions are my own & these products & companies mentioned are ones I happen to love and use daily.
Every year I choose ONE WORD as the theme of my entire year. I got the idea from 'My One Word' which is so brilliant because my 'one word' fuels every goal I have for 2018. I highly recommend going and picking your word (and no this is not sponsored) as the steps are laid out for you! And thank you to Jason Helveston (Pastor at my church & incredible author of 'Tell Me Everything') for sharing about My One Word on your website where I first learned of the concept.
My One Word replaces broken promises with a vision for real change. When you choose a single word, you have a clarity and focus. You are moving toward the future rather than swearing off the past.
My one word for 2018 is NOURISH: Nourishing my relationship w/ God - Eating nourishing foods - nourishing my body via healing - nourishing conversations - only being involved & trusting in relationships that are nourishing - nourishing what makes me feel alive - nourishing others via service.
The definition of nourishing is.... to supply with what is necessary for life, health, and growth - to cherish, foster, keep alive - to strengthen, build up, or promote.
The word 'Nourish' first spoke to me when I saw that MindBodyGreen is rolling out a 'Nourishing New Year Program' . I quickly signed up and encourage you to too. I feel that MindBodyGreen is 'always' on the cutting edge of wellness and the leader in wellness across the country.
As I followed the steps for picking my word, every single thought and note I would journal led to....NOURISH. And choosing NOURISH means a complete overhaul of.....well, my entire life. The authors of 'one word' - Mike & Rachel - said 'Don’t be surprised if living out your “one word” feels unnatural and awkward at first. Remember, the reason you want to change is due to the fact that this godly characteristic is not currently present in your day-to-day life. Give it time and stay with it'.
So, what will be your own word in 2018?
Created and curated by Kelly, Snapshots of Wellness encourages all of you to cultivate your 'joie de vivre': Compassion for Animals via food, style & lifestyle.