This Balance Beam Called Life

Wednesday, September 9th, 2015

I never truly know what I am going to blog about. I try to stick to the schedule that my meticulously  organized partner and I have created. I really want to do so but then I get inspired….my inspiration is usually off course but so strong that I can’t turn back. I think that this piece of myself is really why I decided to blog in the first place. Its the piece that I felt the urge to share with others~ the real stuff, the heartfelt, my truth.

 

 

A.Fogarty Photography

 

Truth is life can be overwhelming. It can be really hard, really messy, and really chaotic. You see, its 10:15 pm and Im in the middle of tackling a sink full of dishes that have been waiting for me since dinner. Dinnertime has been squeezed into a small window of opportunity after football practice and bedtime. Football players require scrubbing, teething babies require consoling, and clients require return emails.  Im determined to have the house completely tidy before I go to bed when I feel this sudden urge to write.

As summer slowly fades into fall, life is suddenly traveling at a much faster pace. Sometimes I feel like I am living on an amusement ride. Spinning, and spinning until all my surroundings have fuzzy edges, and are seemingly unfamiliar. If I had a dollar for every time I have spoken or heard another mother speak the words, “Im trying to find the balance” I would be so very wealthy!

The balance can be between self care and caring for others. The balance could be running your own business and running a household. It can be between a a successful partnership and successful roles in parenthood. It might be finding balance between an organized plan and spontaneity. The balance could simply be between what feels like work, and the joy of play.

As I navigate through the many roles that I want to do so well and perfect I am endlessly searching out strategies and tools to get to a place of satisfaction. This ultimate goal of satisfaction being a state of happiness, content, and accomplishment united. It is to take all of my scattered puzzle pieces and find a way to fit them together one by one until they make a beautiful picture.

Life should be messy, but it should be so very beautiful too. It should be challenging, but not so that your weak and tired. When you start to spin so fast that you no longer recognize the details of your surroundings is when you stop the ride. Ground your feet, breathe deep, gather your bearings, center your heart, and decide which direction to start to fearlessly walk straight towards.

There are so many woman who work this balance beam of life so very well, I look to these powerful woman for endless inspiration and use them as my mentors on this course.  I share with you links to these wonderful resources and hope you all find their work as powerful and life altering as I do. Please share in the comments some of the resources that help you to find balance in your life.

x Danielle

Louise Hay

 

Danielle Laporte 

 

 

 

Gabrielle Bernstein

 

Marie Forleo 

 

25 Minute Vacation Workout

Wednesday, August 19th, 2015

25 Minute Vacation Workout

 

Anyone that knows me knows that I live a crazy busy lifestyle. I’m always on the go have and have an overflowing to-do list at all times – needless to say, I always have something I should be doing. Lately with time being scarce, I’ve put working out on the back burner. Something I always said I wouldn’t do – but here I am, little time to spare and it’s an easy thing let go. But I’m back! I’ve come to the realization that 20-30 minutes of physical activity is better than not at all and I could probably use a 20 minute break from behind my computer screen.

The past two weeks I’ve been at Drew’s Lake in Linnenus, Maine. A small town right outside my hometown. I rented a sweet little lake house where I’ve been enjoying a “working” vacation. With three weddings and countless seniors and engagement sessions I’ve been keeping myself pretty busy. But if you are anything like me, where you travel a lot or are always on the go it makes it really hard to make time to workout. But this week I have put in a conscious effort and I’ve been feeling great. So today I’m sharing with you my 25 minute on vacation, at home, no equipment, full body (whatever you want to call it) workout. It works all your major muscles, gets your heart rate up and makes you sweat – best of all, you’re done in under 30 minutes! So grab your sneaks, a good pandora playlist and head outside for an easy to follow Add Meraki workout.

XO,

Amanda

 

 

stairs

1. Stairs, Hills or Just run in Place (two steps at a time x 5)

jumping jacks

2. Jumping Jacks (10 reps x 5)

plank & crunches

3. Planks into Pushup (10 times x 5)

4. Crunches (10 times x 5)

side plank

5. Side Plank Pulses (10 times x 5)tricep dip

6. Tricep Dips (10 times x 5)

7. Squats (10 times x 5) not pictured

I like to do one set of everything then repeat 5 times through (like a circuit)

but it’s completely up to you!

Do it in any order you like and as many sets or reps to fit your pace.

water kayak

Other alternative workouts I’ve been enjoying while out at camp have been kayaking, yoga and 3 mile runs.

What’s your favorite at home workout?

Summer Beach Essentials

Wednesday, July 15th, 2015


Looking for a natural-effortless beach look? Or maybe just a few good reads for those few moments you get to spend relaxing with your feet in the sand and the sun upon your face. Today we have you covered with a few of our favorite beach essentials for ladies on a budget to keep you protected from UV Rays, entertained, and looking great. These are a few of our favorites, but we want to hear from you. What are your favorite beach essentials? Share in the comments below or tag us with #addmeraki on social media. Click the name of each product to be re-directed to purchase.

Garnier BB Cream – The perfect light and natural coverage with SPF.

Neutrogena Beach Defense SPF 30 – Perfect for beach or pool days so you can always keep your skin protected and feeling fresh.

Not Your Mother’s Beach Babe Texturizing Sea Salt Spray – The ultimate texturizing spray to give you those natural beach waves.

Bali Mango Body Spray – Looking for a light spritz to give you a fresh scent for summer? Look no further than Bath and Body Work’s Bali Bangor Body Spray.

Ray-Ban Sunglasses – Timeless Sunglasses that are perfect for every outside occasion.

The Opposite of Loneliness | Not That Kind of Girl | Rich Bitch – A few of our most recent favorite reads from lady-power to learning how to handle your finances. Great summer reads to keep you entertained and educated.

Skincare Essentials by Contributor Mackenzie Lamoureux

Tuesday, June 16th, 2015

Skincare essentials – Normal/Dry Skin – Morning & Night

Though we are moving from wintertime to summertime and our skin may not be as dry and flakey or as pale and pasty, dry skin guys and gals always need products with maximum hydration no matter what the season.

Personally, it does not matter what time of the year; my skin is always sensitive and always dry/thirsty. I have found the perfect set of products for my young, but dry/sensitive skin to help maximize brightness, plumpness, and hydration. All of these products have great benefits for multiple skin types, but these are great for early anti-aging properties, pore cleansing products to help clear minor breakouts and keep skin clear without stripping natural, essential oils in your face and keep hydration locked in all day!

No more cakey makeup, no more flakey dry skin, reduce pore size and fine lines with these four small steps, you have all the products you need for hydrated, youthful looking skin!

Step One—Facial Cleanser:

Use this morning and night;

At night, wet face, and lather up a pea size of the cleanser in your hand until foamy. Work in circular motions all over face & eyes. Very gentle on eyes & removes every trace of makeup!

In the morning, repeat steps to cleanse face of oils and dirt accumulated over nighttime.

Shiseido IBUKI Gentle Cleanser

This product is great for all skin types, but especially dry/sensitive skin. Some info about the products ingredients and benefits;

-Fatty Acid Capturing Ingredient: Thoroughly removes fatty acids from deep within pores to prevent damage and breakouts.
-AMT: Cleanses and preserves skin’s natural moisture.
-TMG: Natural exfoliant to clarify and smooth skin’s surface.
-Trehalose: Provides moisture during cleansing.

TIP:

For sensitive skin, use 1-2 times per week Clarisonic Spin brush for deep-pore cleaning action. This product removes makeup six times better than traditional methods, Clears pores and reduces the appearance of pore size, Cleanses so thoroughly that skincare products absorb better, Creates noticeably healthier looking skin!

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Clarisonic MIA Skin Cleansing System 

For normal skin/oily acne-prone skin, Clarisonic use daily is encouraged!

Step Two—Toner

Use this either sprayed on a cotton pad and pressed onto face, or spray directly onto face and let dry. This toner allows for extra, all-day hydration but also helps

Fresh Rose Floral Toner

Not only will this help in hydrating the skin for a plump and toned complexion. This product also has great multi-use, mist all over face to revitalize and re-hydrate the skin throughout the day, set makeup, and soothe irritations.

 About the product ingredients:

-100% Pure Rosewater: Calms and tones the skin.

Step Three—Moisturizer

Once face is dry, use two-three droplets of this product and work all over face in circular motions.

 Josie Maran Pure Argan Milk/Intensive Hydrating Treatment

TIP: Instead of rubbing product all over face, dry circular motions combined with pressing motions to help push product into skin for maximum benefit!

 This product helps with deep hydration by penetrating deeply and absorbing quickly to fortify and repair skin for instant, long-lasting hydration that produces a fresh, radiant glow. This purified water plumps and hydrates while argan oil preserves and nourishes, locking moisture in and preserving skin’s youthful cushion! (Description from Sephora.com)

 Step Four—Eye cream

From young-mature skin, this is the all time MOST IMPORTANT step in skin care. Our skin around our eyes is the most delicate and the thinnest of all our face/body.

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Kiehl’s Creamy Eye Treatment w/ Avocado

Use light amount on ring finger; use dabbing/patting (never pulling) motions around eye area. This product will not migrate into your eyes and will create maximum hydration.

Enriched with avocado, this product is great for the ultimate hydration, plump the area around the eyes, diminish fine-lines and dark circles, as well as help with a base for smooth makeup application!

 

Thanks for following along! Make sure to follow us on all social media channels for more beauty insights.

X,

Mackenzie

 

Natural Bug Repellent

Sunday, June 14th, 2015

Most every aspect of summer excites me, especially after the long and dreadful winter we just had. We are anxious for long BBQ dinners alfresco, after dinner trips for ice cream cones, and late night marshmallow roasting over bonfires.

 

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The one thing that Im dreading are the annoying insects that the warm weather draws. Mosquitoes, Fleas, and those nasty ticks can make an evening out miserable and ruined.  Today I’m sharing my recipe for natural bug repellent. It is safe and effective. It does not have the dangerous ingrediants that many store bought products contain. I use two variations, one is a cream and one is a spray. There are a number of essentials oils that are successful at deterring these bugs. 

MOSQUITOES- citronella, lemon, eucalyptus, peppermint, lemon, catnip, basil, clove, lemongrass, lavender, geranium, and thyme.

TICKS-rose geranium, juniper, oregano, thyme, grapefruit, and rosewood

Feel free to develop your own combination of these blends. There are very distinct scents to each oil combination, here is the blend I prefer.

 

BUG SPRAY CREAM

ITEMS NEEDED

Coconut Oil

Lavender EO

Thyme EO

Cedar EO

Peppermint EO

DIRECTIONS

In a small jar the size of baby food combine coconut oil to 3/4 full

add 40 drops of each essential oil and stir to blend

for use dab on wrists, inside arms, behind knees, and around ankles

 

NATURAL BUG SPRAY

ITEMS NEEDED

Witch hazel or Rubbing Alcohol

8 oz Glass Spray bottle- I get mine at the natural food store but Amazon has great offerings. 2-1oz_clear_tr_1__58115.1407264070.300.300

Lavender EO

Cedar EO

Thyme EO

Peppermint EO

DIRECTIONS

Combine 4 oz. Witch Hazel or Rubbing Alcohol

4 oz of filtered water

40-50 drops of each essential oil

Spray over clothing before needed

 

 

 

I would love to hear your feedback. Please comment if you like this post, or share with us your favorite essential oil blends and uses.

As always thank you for stopping by….xDanielle

Breakfast Inspirations

Tuesday, June 2nd, 2015

Breakfast is my favorite meal. I love weekends because it allows us more time to enjoy it. I love sleeping in, cuddling a little longer with my lovelies and slowly entering into the day. I have one little boy who loves to cook so we are usually a team in weekend breakfast preparations. He is going to make quite a husband someday!  I truly believe that when you put a little heart and soul into your food it has remarkable payoffs. There are so many studies that have been done around the importance of eating rituals and their effect on health. Establishing routines within your home will ensure that your children have a healthy relationship with food for the rest of their lives. My mother is an amazing cook, I can not remember ever hearing her recite orders into a loud speaker at a drive thru window. This healthy eating ritual is engrained into my lifestyle as a mother. I realize that life is super busy and their is always somewhere to run off to, but carving out time to nourish your body should be priority. Wake up ten minutes early, or take ten minutes longer to get going on weekend chores. Make beautiful meals, make messes, and make memories. Plan this weekends ritual today! Add Meraki!

 

Here are a few of Our Favorite Gluten Free Breakfast Recipes:

 

Gluten Free Fruit & Hemp Seed Pancakes

*The best gluten free flour ever is Americas Test Kitchen Blend. I dare you to serve this recipe to your family and see if anyone notices that they are eating gluten free. Its AMAZING and has made my life so much easier. Make a huge container and it will carry you through many, many recipes. I purchase all these products on amazon.com. If you do not want to use this blend than use King Arthur Gluten Free Pancake Mix as a close second. Follow the pancake recipe on the box and add your own flavor!

ATK

Americas Test Kitchen Flour Blend Recipe:

24 ounces (4 1/2 cups plus 1/3 cup) white rice flour
7 1/2 ounces (1 2/3 cups) brown rice flour
7 ounces (1 1/3 cups) potato starch
3 ounces (3/4 cup) tapioca starch
3/4 ounce (3 tablespoons) nonfat milk powder

 

  •     2 1/2 cups ATK Gluten Free Flour Blend
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 1/4 cup buttermilk
  • 2 large eggs, separated
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1-2 teaspoons vegetable oil (I like to use a grape seed oil)

1. Whisk flour blend, salt, baking powder, and baking soda together in large bowl. In separate bowl whisk buttermilk, egg yolks, and melted butter.

2. Whip egg whites until foamy with mixer, about 1 minute. Gradually add sugar until stiff peaks form.

3. Whisk buttermilk mixture into flour mixture and gently fold in whipped egg whites.

4. Heat teaspoon of oil over medium heat until shimmering. Wipe with paper towel to leave thin film of oil. Add about 1/4 cup batter into skillet and cook until bottoms are brown and top is bubbling. Flip and cook 1 -2 minutes longer.

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We really like to use cookie cutters to make our pancakes really cute and special. We switch up our fruit ingredients…mashed bananas, a homemade cinnamon butter, and of course chocolate chips!  The importance is letting your children feel like they are making their own decisions about what they are putting into their bodies, there is importance to this feeling of ownership.

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 Breakfast Burritos

Wraps

(my favorite gluten free wrap is Trader Joes Brown Rice Wrap) it is not my choice for a cold sandwich but for a heated use like this its perfect!

Eggs

Diced Peppers, Onions, & Mushrooms

Shredded Organic Cheese

1. Scramble your eggs. You do not need to add milk here, just scramble good and they will be light and fluffy.

2. Add your chopped peppers, onions, and mushrooms to your scrambled. You can really use any vegetable that you prefer, we like to make it feel like a mexican burrito and hence chose these.

3. Sprinkle Cheese Atop!

4. Remove Egg Mixture from Skillet.

5. Add a tab of butter to skillet and throw in your wrap.

6. Fill wrap with scramble mixture

7. Roll wrap up like a burrito, ensuring that each side gets a nice crispy brown glow.

ENJOY!

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3. Sweet Potato Shred

Okay, this is one of my favorites. Its super simple, really pretty, and oh so healthy.

Sweet Potato

Kale

Coconut Oil

Trader Joe’s All Purpose Seasoning

 

1. Heat tab of coconut oil in a skillet.

2. Use a potato peeler to remove and discard skin of sweet potatoes

3. Continue to shred with peeler into heated skillet

4. Turn Sweet Potatoes, Season, and allow to cook until soft.

5. Toss in Handfuls of Fresh Kale and allow to cook additional three minutes.

ENJOY!

If your looking for more morning inspirations I love the work of Gluten Free Goddess & Cooking for Isiah.

xDanielle

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Spring Workout Playlist

Friday, May 1st, 2015

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Okay, so a few posts ago we mentioned that whole lack of motivation thing when it comes to getting ourselves feelin’ good before summer season hits. So today we’re putting our money where our mouth is and giving you just the motivation you need to get your butt in gear. We have for you a kick-ass spring workout playlist that’s going to get you up and ready to hit the gym or maybe even take on that extra mile. Whatever way it keeps you motivated – we hope you enjoy it as much as we do! And like always, feel free to tag us in your favorite spring workout playlists with the #addmeraki.

If you’re an iTunes kinda girl…

  • Honey, I’m Good – Andy Grammer
  • Shut Up and Dance – WALK THE MOON
  • Want to Want Me – Jason Derulo
  • Sugar – Maroon 5
  • Worth It (Featuring Kid Ink) – Fifth Harmony
  • Somebody (Featuring Jeremih) – Natalie LaRose
  • Fight Song – Rachel Platten (this one’s my boyfriend’s favorite – no shame)

If you prefer to let Pandora do the work…

  • Hip Hop Barbacue Radio
  • Dance Cardio Radio
  • Spring Break 2015 Radio
  • Alternative Endurance Training
  • Yoga Workout

Forewarning – A few of this songs/stations may contain explicit language. But as my Buti Yoga instructor would say, “The dirtier the better”

Feeling Confident and Embracing Your Body

Thursday, April 23rd, 2015

A.Fogarty Photography

While we all continue to close our eyes and wish away this long winter we can start to smell and taste sweet summer near. If you’re anything like me, there is something about the winter season that just makes you feel so blah. The lack of sunshine, dry skin and hair, flu and cold germs, and lets not forget how hard it is to muster any motivation. But with warm summer days so close around the corner we are anxious to turn the page. To feel recharged, motivated, and well…lovely. Feeling lovely means loving your authentic self, being comfortable and confident in your skin- much easier said then done, right? We have a damn good excuse for this after 200 days of gray. We are going to try and help you (and ourselves) to beat the winter blues away and welcome in a fresh new colorful chapter. We will share our posts with you to inspire, to enlighten, and add color to your days.

Todays post focuses on self confidence and getting to that “lovely” feeling. We all have our hangups, even the most glamorous models have flaws they focus on. I recently got to shoot a photo session with Playboy playmate Ciara Price. Ciara is born and raised in Buxton, Maine. She was Miss November 2011 and graced the cover as a small town girl with a big town presence. …..She has since been featured on four Playboy covers and in Maxim Australia.   I have the honor of being able to take her gorgeous photos and knowing her personally so I asked her to share a little about how she generates and has developed self confidence.  She has allowed us to share with you these beautiful raw images.  The reason I love photographing Ciara so much is because she exudes confidence. She’s comfortable in the skin she’s in and owns it. She embraces her curves and often shares her sentiment on her social media accounts. It’s refreshing to see her realness in a current environment where ideals and images are often unrealistic and unattainable. We need to see more photos like this flooding Pinterest everyday. If we think that we are pressured by society to maintain a certain body type can you imagine what a Playboy playmate must feel like?

When talking about self confidence and how to inspire women and girls to feel comfortable and “lovely” in their own skin, our conversation went a little something like this…

Amanda: “Ciara, can you share with our followers how you maintain self confidence?”

Ciara: “I go through all the same body image issues and insecurities that every girl does. I don’t let anyone else put judgement or expectations on my body. Everyone of us is designed differently and being 105 pounds is not the ideal weight for every woman. I don’t worry about the numbers, rather I try and be cautious of what I put in my body. I firmly believe you are what you eat. But that doesn’t mean turning your diet into eating nothing. It’s all about finding the right balance for YOU.”

I love that. I think we all can admit that we are our own worst critic. But we also are the only ones with the power to change this. We need to love yourselves and see our bodies as an authentic temple. Thank your body every day for all that it does for you. Treat your temple with a yoga session or a walk around the park but also remember to treat it with indulgence when you need it. We will all be most deserving of a sweet summer ice cream cone. There is a balance that works for everyone.

So I asked her, “When do you feel most confident?”

Ciara: “Actually, when Im productive. Knowing that I’ve tackled tasks throughout the day is invigorating!”

So what made her feel confident had nothing to do with her looks but how she feels. This is so so important. Mostly because how you feel about yourself effects the energy you give off. If you’re giving off positive energy you’re going to influence those around you and continue to pass on the good vibes.

So we want to know, what makes you feel confident? Let us know by commenting below or tagging your social media posts with #addmeraki. Share the love and remember embrace your body and love yourself, always.

xo,

Amanda & Danielle

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“Clean” Cleaning Toolbox

Thursday, April 16th, 2015

Spring oh sweet Spring! I couldn’t run up in the attic to store our winter necessities fast enough. We have been housebound and vitamin D deprived for far too long. Our spring getaway vacation simply couldn’t come fast enough. So after packing the boots as far away as I could, I grabbed the suitcases to start preparing for a long awaited travel to tropical climate and bronzed skin. Then it started… Coughing, oh no not coughing! Runny noses…oh please not now! Belly aches…which led to frequent bathroom trips…than we paired it with a bucket…I know-It’s always the worst from both ends at once! I literally was blaming myself for bragging at basketball last week that we had missed out on flu & cold season. Note to self- Don’t ever boast!

What I do know is that during the winter months I was religiously ramping up their immune systems with my drawer of tricks. As the winter weather started to break, I lessoned up our routine and hence- SICKNESS! SICKNESS! SICKNESS! I was determined that nothing was going to stop me from taking that cute new two piece out of that luggage. We would be going and they would be healthy by the end of week! (fingers, toes, and hands in prayer position)

Well bags are packed and we are ready to go! After a very long week I am sharing with you my tricks and tips for fighting flu bugs, and spring cleaning the germs of winter away naturally! My very french housekeeper always makes the weirdest faces when she sees my concoctions all over the house. She thinks Im a witch…;) Well I’ve decided to share this mommas favorite no fail potions. These little magic bottles are ensuring that we get a memorable healthy vacation this week! I hope that you find them helpful and lovely as well!

MY ESSENTIAL KICK ASS CLEAN TOOL BOX: 

Pure Lavender Oil

Pure Tangerine Oil

Pure Tea Tree Oil

Four Thieves Synergy Blend

Basil (Fresh or in EO Form)

Lemon (Fresh or in EO Form)

Distilled Water

White Vinegar

Glass Bottles

Spray Nozzle

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There are so many formulas and recipes that I really love when it comes to natural cleaning and essential oils. Im going to start by sharing some very easy, affordable combinations to start. I will add to this over time but in an effort of keeping it simple this is a good beginning.

KICK ASS FLU BUSTER: 

Four Thieves Blend: ingredients are clove, cinnamon, lemon, rosemary, eucalyptus

I purchased on Amazon for under $10.00. Here is the link. http://www.amazon.com/Thieves-Synergy-Essential-Comparable-DoTerras/dp/B008B9Y0EY/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1429236847&sr=8-2&keywords=four+thieves

There is a very interesting story to this formula. Thieves oil is an essential oil blend based on a story from around the 15th century, when the bubonic plague was running rampid through Europe and Asia. Four thieves from Europe, who were notoriously robbing the infectious dead bodies of all their possessions. They, miraculously, never contracted the highly infectious plague and this led to deep inquiry in court after they were caught and charged. The magistrate offered them a deal, their secret for a reduced sentence. Taking the deal, they told stories of their herbal knowledge and their powerful medicinal properties when combined in certain ways. This specific herbal blend that they had created, concocted from aromatic herbs, was HIGHLY EFFECTIVE in killing all of the airborne bacteria. Some of the stories told speak of it in a vinegar form, while others talk about a blend that was in a mask over their faces. In 1997, Weber State University did a study that found the Thieves essential oil blend to have a 99.96% success rate at killing airborne bacteria. We don’t know whether or not thieves story is true, but the essential oils are truly antiseptic, antiviral, antibacterial, and anti-infectious. They will stimulate the immune system, circulation and respiratory system, and help protect against the flu, colds, bronchitis, pneumonia, sore throats, cuts, and more. (source)

I use this oil in a few ways:

1. Rub

For the boys I use a few drops in hand mixed with coconut oil, this is considered a carrier oil. If you don’t have coconut you can use oil, jojoba, or grape seed. Use this combination to rub your little ones feet before bed, after baths, or even when they are off to school in the morning.

2. Diffuser

We have 2 diffusers, one in the bedroom and one in the living room. Since this blend has been found to kill 99% of airborne bacteria when diffused its a no brainer. (Buy mine here)

3. Hand Sanitizer

I absolutely hate the smell and effect of all store bought sanitizers. My hands are raw from the long winter and the last thing I need is alcohol to burn in every crack and tear on my hands. I have been making my own moisturizing hand sanitizer. I use empty baby food jars are the containers but you could really use any tupperware container or old face cream jar. You can adjust the fragrance to your fancy, just buy a different essential oil. I love citrus, and lavender so I have one of each.

Recipe: (using small baby food jar)

4 table spoonsCoconut Oil

2 table spoons Pure Aloe Vera Gel

Four Thieves Blend (approximately 6-10 drops depending on size of your container)

Tee Tree Oil (5 drops)

Lavender Essential Oil or Tangerine Essential Oil (10 drops)

 

 

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TOXIC FREE  ALL PURPOSE SPRING CLEANING SPRAY

This is the easiest, safest, most effective all purpose cleaner I have tried. If you have ever researched what is put into our cleaning solutions (even those labeled organic and all natural) you know the importance of making your own products. Its a crime what they are allowed to put on our grocery shelves. Be your own chemist, learn what you like, and what combination is most effective for you but please don’t spray down  your children’s toys and toilet seats with commercial cleaning products. The toxins are far worse than the germs that were there before it!

Heres my go to:

Fresh Basil, Lemons, White Vinegar

Fill a Ball Mason Jar with 4 Basil Leaves and a sliced lemon (squeeze some juices out as you drop them in) Fill the rest of the jar with the pure vinegar. Cover and allow this to sit for a few days. The Basil and Lemon will overpower the scent of the vinegar as the solution sits. You can also use Basil & Lemon Essential Oil if you would like. Fill Glass Jars with your solution, insert spray nozzle and start your spring cleaning! I got my blue jars at the natural food store but you can really use any old glass jar (i.e..vinegar container) that has a threaded top and will accept the nozzle. The essential oils can break down plastic containers and potentially leach chemicals into the spray so it’s important to use glass.

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SLEEP TIGHT DONT LET THE BED BUGS BITE SPRAY

Who doesn’t love the scent of lavender spritzed on their bedding? Its just the loveliest scent and helps to ensure a good nights rest. (what is a good nights rest again) Im preaching to the choir! In addition to lavender I add tea tree oil as a natural antimicrobial and antiseptic. So this blend is not only soothing and yummy smelling but it is a cleanser. Tea Tree Oil can be used to clear acne, asthma, and even lice! Its always at the root of my cleaning arsenal.

Lavender Essential Oil, Tea Tree Oil, Tangerine Oil

I use my glass bottle and add 10-15 drops lavender essential oil, 10-15 drops tee tree oil, and six drops tangerine oil. Fill the remainder with distilled water. Spritz bedding, pillows, rugs, and any other soft goods needing a freshening.

 

If you are new to homemade cleaning products this is certainly a nice easy start. Its really quite easy and feels so good knowing that you are not introducing more chemicals and toxins into your household. My boys are obsessed with their nightly foot rubs with our blended rubs…note….put a timer on because night time routines can get rather lengthy! I am not a doctor or a healer but I believe in the power of the earth and the history of uses. I also believe that my magic potions are the reason why this beautiful boy is smiling. Heres to a fabulous week with my three rascals!

Xdanielle

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At Home – Full Body Workout for a Busy Life

Wednesday, April 8th, 2015

Do you live a busy lifestyle and struggle to find time to get a decent workout in? Maybe it’s kids hanging off your hip or that college essay screaming your name – whatever it may be, sometimes you just can’t simply find the time in a day to get your bum to the gym. Well we feel ya sister. That’s why we teamed up with personal trainer, Kelsey Ray, to give you a quick 25-30 minute full body workout that you can do right from the comfort of your own home. The best part about this workout – no equipment! (Our favorite type of workout!) In just 30 minutes you can use your own body to increase cardiovascular endurance and strength as well as decrease body fat. Sounds like a win-win…WIN, right?! So as busy as your day may be, we encourage you to find just that 30 minutes of YOU time. Trust me, your body will thank you.

Just to clarify, this workout is for all fitness levels and all exercises can be modified to your liking.

45 seconds excersise / 15 seconds rest

  • switch lunges
  • mountain climbers
  • moving plank
  • v-ups
  • pushup-tap
  • sumo squats
  • burpees
  • lunge with kick

If you need more instruction we made a quick video for you to demonstrate each exercise.



If you liked this workout and are interested in receiving personal training you can email Kelsey at kelseyhayes1234@gmail.com – she’s sweetheart but she’ll kick you bum into shape! Stay tuned for more to come.


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