Aug 27, 2014

What's in My Purse?

The Mama Purse - a magical space.

Does it remind you of this?

I thought it would be fun to show you what is routinely found in MY purse - a mama, artist, teacher, oiler.

Thanks to my awesome mother in law, this is the purse I am currently carrying:

Large with pockets inside and outside.  Brightly colored a plus and chevrons a double plus!  This purse happens to be a Vera Bradley, but lately I have been REALLY into Thirty One bags.  Check out my cousin's Thirty One site here.

The cavernous purse of a mama.... a truly incredible sight!

Want to know what all this junk is??  I have to say, when I pulled it all out, I was impressed that there wasn't anything weirder in my purse.  Usually, I could win competitions for the most bizarre items in a purse, haha.

Here's what is in my purse now:

1.  Crayola Twistable Colors - I keep these in my purse for my girls.  When we are at restaurants or waiting rooms, they love to color.  Mommy wins, too, because the girls are occupied and being creative.

2.  Home Made Peppermint Lip Balm using Young Living essential oils (stay tuned for a tutorial!)

3.  Various Essential Oil Products - currently, I have home made bug spray, Tranquil and an Allergy blend that I made.

4.  A travel case with 8 sample bottles of Young Living essential Oils.  Remember this post?

5.  Work Keys

6.  Organic lollipops - my husband calls these bribery ;)  We rarely get to this point, but occasionally the girls need a treat, so I keep a couple on hand.  I bought these at Sprouts.

7.  Green Tea Mints from Trader Joe's

8.  My wallet - with a thousand receipts because I am terrible about remembering to clean it out.  It's rather worn - might be time for a replacement soon!  Use it up and wear it out is our motto though :)

9.  Wall charger for my phone

10.  Toys - Likely, this was something that Olivia walked out of the house with and handed to me before school, but I generally have something to keep the girls occupied in my purse.

11.  Checkbook - who uses checks these days??  I do.  Once a month for our milk co-op and rarely for school stuff.

12.  Diapers - We use Honest Company diapers and we LOVE them.  Have you tried them?  Click my link and you can order a FREE sample - you just pay shipping.  I was sold after seeing the adorable designs, the amazing packaging and reading about their quality and attention to purity and the environment.

Ok, now tell me - what is the weirdest thing in YOUR purse??

Aug 25, 2014

Make Your Own Essential Oil Blend

Being an Oiler sometimes makes me feel like a Mad Scientist - I LOVE coming up with new blends, mixing concoctions for special needs, filling my little bottles and experimenting with what works best.  Today, I'd like to share with you how I make my blends!

As any Mad Scientist knows (or artist for that matter), you are only as good as your supplies.  I suggest only using Young Living essential oils - they are well known for their purity and extremely high quality.  When it comes to rollers, I have experimented with several.  For a long time, I used these from Abundant Health, but lately, I have been having a lot more success buying the roller fitments from Young Living and putting them on top of my empty Young Living bottles.  I like the metal roller on the YL fitments and they seem to be higher quality.

Need help getting your YL roller fitments on and off?  Check out this video!

You will also need a liquid carrier oil.  Which carrier oil you use is completely up to you.  I prefer Fractionated Coconut Oil or Almond Oil.  

You can make a blend for ANYTHING - it's so exciting!  Here are some of my favorites that we use in our home:

What are YOUR favorite blends?  Do you make your own?

Want to know how to purchase your own oils?  Check out this information HERE!

As always, please remember that I am a Mama and not a doctor. These things work for us and I am in love with using oily remedies for health in our home and I am excited to share them with you, but please use your best judgement for your own home. 

Aug 19, 2014

7 Verses to Pray Over Your Child as They Go Back to School

Back to school - such a bitter sweet time in our family. My girls were so excited to start at a new school today - to make new friends, be in a new room with new toys and new books, to sleep on cots and eat at new tables! But it also means that they are not with me 24/7 - that I am missing out on those silly little things they say that keep me going through the day. And it also means that I am not there for those teachable moments. But I trust their teachers and in our most amazing God to care for them and to love them, and to ease my worries, I pray.

Here are 7 verses I will be praying over my girls as they go back to school:

1. 1 Timothy 4:12 - Don’t let anyone think less of you because you are young. Be an example to all believers in what you say, in the way you live, in your love, your faith, and your purity.

Lord, help my children to be little shining lights - a sign to all of your love for us. Help them to make good choices and develop good friendships. Help them to love their neighbors.

2. Joshua 1:9 - This is my command—be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid or discouraged. For the LORD your God is with you wherever you go.

Lord, remove all fear from my children about school this year. Help them to adjust to a new schedule, help them to not be afraid to talk to new people and make new friends.

3. Philippians 4:8 - Fix your thoughts on what is true, and honorable, and right, and pure, and lovely, and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise.

Lord, I ask that you please fill their heads with so many true, honorable, right, pure, lovely and admirable things that there is no room for anything negative. Give them JOY in their day, and good thoughts and dreams as they sleep.

4. Isaiah 30:21 - Your own ears will hear him. Right behind you a voice will say, “This is the way you should go," whether to the right or to the left.

Lord, guide their steps. Even as preschoolers, they are learning to make choices that will stay with them in life. Please help me to guide them in the way they should be going and to encourage them as they learn to listen to you. Please help me teach them to pray and to always turn to you first.

5. Matthew 18:10 - Beware that you don’t look down on any of these little ones. For I tell you that in heaven their angels are always in the presence of my heavenly Father.

Lord, I ask that you surround my children with your presence and your angels. I ask that you protect them from harm and from illness. I ask that you place people in their lives that will value them.

6. Proverbs 15:1 - A gentle answer deflects anger, but harsh words make tempers flare.

Lord, help my children to honor you with their speech. Help them to talk to each other and to their friends, teachers, family, and parents in a way that is pleasing and deflects anger. And Lord, as parents, help us to model this loving, gentle speech.

7. 2 Corinthians 5:17 - This means that anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life is gone; a new life has begun!

Lord, above all else, I ask that you bring my children in to your arms. That you help them to KNOW you, to desire you, to trust you, and to rely on you.

Blessings on your school year, whether day care, elementary, middle school, high school, home school, private, public, or even teaching!  May you also find Joy in your days and remember to turn to your Heavenly Father when you feel overwhelmed or afraid.

Aug 10, 2014

Teachers: Back to School with Young Living Essential Oils

For almost a decade, one of the ways I have defined myself has been as a High School Art Teacher.  And for almost a decade, the first month of school has found me excited, stressed, overwhelmed and sick!  Not this year!  I'd love to tell you how, as a teacher, you can incorporate Young Living Essential oils into your daily routine!  Here are 5 ways!

1.  It is important to start the day right!  A good, healthy breakfast and 1 ounce of Ningxia Red, Young Living's antioxidant drink, and you will be ready to go!  Ningxia Red is chocked full of goodness that will give you energy and stamina for your day, help boost your immune system and contribute to your overall health and well-being.

2.  Oil Up!  Pick your favorite oil to help you get going in the mornings!  I know lots of people who use En-R-Gee, Peppermint or Motivation, but my personal favorites are Bergamot and Valor.  I wear a diffuser necklace often or place the oil on my pulse points or behind my ears.  

3.  Brush your teeth!  Using the Thieves line of toothpaste and mouthwash not only helps your pearly whites, but it also aids your immune system as well!  A simple way to combat those nasty germs!  Don't forget a drop of Thieves oil on the bottom of your feet at night!

4.  Thieves Spray in your classroom, or a diffuser if the school will allow.  Spray down desks and doorknobs with Thieves Cleaner or Thieves Spray, or diffuse a couple of drops of Thieves oil before the kids arrive or after they leave.  Forget the toxic Germ Killing Spray sold in the big box store this school year, stick with an all natural product that benefits your health.

5.  You know that class that you pray God will help you love?  Yeah, we all have those.  Keep on praying, and add a drop of Valor or Peace and Calming on the back of your neck during passing periods.  

Remember, Teacher friends - in the event of an emergency, you are supposed to put the oxygen mask on yourself first.  An excellent analogy to the fact that if we do not take care of ourselves, we can not take care of those under our care.  If you need help determining what to use or how to order, I'd love to help!

Want to know how to purchase your own oils?  Check out this information HERE!

As always, please remember that I am a Mama and not a doctor. These things work for us and I am in love with using oily remedies for health in our home and I am excited to share them with you, but please use your best judgement for your own home. 

Jul 31, 2014

17 Oily Options for Depression and Anxiety

Globally, more than 350 million people of all ages suffer from depression. (source) That is a staggering number. Depression affects women more than men and can be literally debilitating. It's a serious issue that is often pushed to the side because of a desire to be socially accepted, because of stigmas, because "surely that can't be what's wrong with me!"... Depression does not discriminate - rich, poor, healthy, sick, skinny, chubby, everything in life you want, or everything falling apart.

I lead a blessed life. I believe in God and I pray daily. I still battle with anxiety and depression. For years, I tried prescription medications, all of which made me feel worse - like I simply could not be happy. A grey fog ruled my life and I decided many years ago that depression was actually better than feeling like that because at least there were happy times.

Hear my heart, friends. In absolutely no way am I telling you to quit your medications for depression and anxiety. Please consult your physician before you make a decision like that. Stopping these meds cold turkey can cause a lot of issues. If you decide to go in that direction, seek guidance from a professional. I am simply telling you what I have had success with, and try to give you other options.

So, here are 17 Young Living Essential Oils that either myself or my friends have had successes using and a tiny bit about how to go about using them. How do you choose? Where do you start? Our bodies are extremely complex. Just like people choose different prescription meds, different Essential Oils will work differently for different people. Several of these oils are in the Premium Starter Kit, which is a great way to get your foot in the door and try several things on a budget.

1. Frankincense - Click here to find lots of information on Frankincense essential oil. Tons of studies have been done on using Frankincense as a depression remedy. This oil is high in sesquiterpenes which are able to cross the blood/brain barrier, making it a wonderful option for depression. Apply a couple drops to your hands, rub together and cup over your nose and mouth, breathing in deeply. You can also try applying one drop to the crown of your head. Frankincense is included in the Premium Starter Kit.

2.  Peace and Calming - Simply breathing in Peace and Calming instantly calms me down.  This blend is included in the Premium Starter Kit and is a great option for daily use.

3.  Valor - MY favorite oil ever, Valor is a must in my arsenal for oils to conquer depression and anxiety.  I usually apply Valor to the back of my neck or to my wrists when I am feeling edgy.  This oil is also included in the Premium Starter Kit.

4.  Joy - The scent of Joy was, at first, a little powerful for me, but after multiple success stories using this oil, it is one of my favorites.  If you do not like the scent, try using it on your feet.  If you do like it, apply over your heart or on your pulse points for a boost.  This oil is also included in the Premium Starter Kit.

5.  Stress Away - This oil blend is not in my daily rotation, but I have many friends who swear by this little green bottle of awesome.  It smells fantastic, too, so you could easily use it as a perfume replacement.  It is also a freebie when you purchase a Premium Starter Kit.

6.  White Angelica - This oil blend has made the biggest noticeable difference for me.  I apply one drop to my wrists and rub them together.  It smells awesome and really helps me with my negativity, which in turn, helps with my depression.

7.  Believe - I use Believe nightly in my diffuser.  It has been pretty incredible to watch how this has helped my husband and I sleep better and how it has impacted my moods throughout the day.  

8.  Tranquil - I use this oil often on my daughter.  She has a lot of anxiety at night that causes her to have a hard time getting to sleep.  We rub a drop of Tranquil on the inside of her forearm and it really helps lessen her anxiety.

9.  Humility - There are several oils that contain Melissa and this is one of them.  These oils are great for helping to boost the mood and calm the spirit.

10.  Grounding - Another oil that my daughter and I use often, this oil helps the brain put things into perspective, which helps with anxiety.

11.  Bergamot - I diffuse this oil often.  Such a lovely scent that is truly uplifting.  When I am tired or I have had a hard day, this oil goes in my diffuser or in my diffuser necklace.

12.  Ylang Ylang - Ylang Ylang helps to combat anger and negative emotions.  It also helps with low self esteem (now you see why it's great for libido, too! *wink wink*).

13.  Magnify Your Purpose - From the Essential Oils Pocket Reference, "This blend stimulates the endocrine system for greater energy low to the right hemisphere of the brain, activating creativity, motivation and focus."

14.  Citrus Fresh - According to Young Living's School of Nature's Remedies, a study was done in 2004 on 150 adults diagnosed with major depression.  10 drops of Citrus Fresh 3 times a day was found to be more effective than leading anti-depressants.  Bonus - it's a very inexpensive oil blend!

15.  Christmas Spirit - Christmas in July is a thing, right? ;)  This oil blend brings joy, peace, happiness and security.

16.  Surrender - This blend helps release stress and tension, aggression and a controlling attitude.

17.  Progressence Plus - Many times, when you stop and examine the source of your emotional stresses, women find that hormones play a huge role in their mental state.  Progressence Plus helps to regulate hormones, which could in turn help to manage depression.

If you are struggling with Anxiety and Depression, I urge you to talk to someone.  Do not suffer in silence.  Talk to a doctor or a counselor - there is help for you!  If you are exploring your options, I hope this list has sparked some ideas for you.  As I write this blog post, I pray you find the perfect option for you and that you find relief!  I am so thankful for Young Living and the help I have received.  Blessings on you, friend!

*Ok, ya'll... you know my heart here - I am not telling you to ditch the advise of your sage doctors.  I am simply telling you how these oils have changed MY life.  As always, use common sense and seek counsel from doctors and certified naturopaths.

Jul 30, 2014

Birthday Blessings

I come from a long line of week long birthday celebrations. Every year when I was a kid, we had a family lunch with my grandparents, a nice dinner with my mom and dad and a friend party to celebrate another year of life. It was simple, but it was magical.

Now I have children.

Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest and other social medias have made kid birthdays a mom competition. I ask this - is it about us, or about the kids? When we check ourselves and our motives, and then ask ourselves if the birthday celebration will really be any more meaningful to our babies if we stay up til 2 am working on a banner on our Die Cutting machine, the answer is probably no. Do they care if you have a themed party? Probably not. Their joy comes in the celebration and the attention.

How do we tone it down and still feel like we are doing something special for our kids? Here is an awesome product that I have the pleasure of reviewing for you today and even choosing one lucky winner to receive one for free!

Birthday Blessing is a way to spend special time focusing on your child the week of their birthday. A beautiful, hand crafted, wooden birthday cake sets the stage for a week long celebration. This beautiful cake is to be displayed in a prominent location in your house the week of your child's birthday - a symbol to others that something special is going on!

Here's the awesome part - Birthday Blessing created this beautiful notebook to help you intentionally celebrate your child. Each day the week before your child's birthday, the Birthday Blessing journal guides you through a devotion with your child about how special they are. There is a space to write about them each year, too!

I love the idea of keeping this for my girls and presenting them with it when they are older!  What a great acknowledgement of how special they are to you.

How would YOU like to win a Birthday Blessings set for your little one?

It's so simple!  Check out the Rafflecopter below to enter!  I hope you win ;)

Jul 17, 2014

Top 3 Uses for Young Living Copaiba

There are a few oils in my arsenal that I have had such amazing successes with that I have vowed to never be without them again.  One of these oils is Copaiba.  Remember how I said I carry it with me everywhere I go?

Copaiba as an oil is steam distilled from gum resin found in the Copal tree in Brazil.  The history of uses by Brazillian herbalists is fascinating and closely matches with our uses today as an Essential Oil.

Here are my top 3 uses for Young Living Copaiba and why I will never be without this oil:

1.  Anti-Inflammatory

I'm sure you have seen news articles cross your Facebook news feed lately about how inflammation plays a role in many diseases and health conditions.  It is a daily struggle that most American adults deal with due to our diet and our environment, but it can lead to a host of other issues.  On top of that, a growing number of individuals (like myself and many others in my family) deal with auto-immune diseases that can cause inflammation in the body to rise even more.  Inflammation normally tells us that our body is trying to rid itself of something harmful.  With auto-immune diseases, the things the body believes to be harmful and is trying to attack happen to be the body itself.  Many people I know feel they are stuck with over the counter anti-inflammatories or even prescriptions which mask the problem and end up ruining the lining of the stomach and even causing damage to the kidneys and liver.  Insert Young Living Copaiba and angels singing (I have a flare for the dramatic, have you noticed??).    Just a drop or two topically over the area that is inflamed or a few drops in a capsule have helped ME more than any little brown pill ever did.  I personally have been amazed at how fast and how effectively this oil has taken away my pain associated with inflammation over the past several months. *

2.  Allergy Relief

Copaiba is what is known as a "driver" oil.  When applied on top of other oils, Copaiba helps to drive the other oils in deeper, which helps them to work more effectively.   That, coupled with it's anti-inflammatory properties, mean that Copaiba is an excellent oil to add to your allergy arsenal.  I add Copaiba to my Lemon, Lavender and Peppermint trio and together, they help to quickly knock out allergy symptoms like stuffy nose, sneezing, cough and breathing issues.**

3.  Headaches

You know how Copaiba is an anti-inflammatory?  (Am I a broken record??)  Well, that means it is another oil that is excellent for headache use.  Simply rub a drop over your forehead to help reduce pain associated with the restriction of blood vessels that occurs during some headaches.***

Fun fact:  Did you know that Copaiba is approved as a food additive in the U.S.?  I can't wait to do a little more research on that one!

I love the warm, earthy scent of Copaiba, but if you don't have it on hand, you can find it in the following Young Living products:
- A.R.T. Beauty Masque
- Breathe Again Roll On
- Copaiba Vanilla moisturizing Shampoo and Conditioner
- Deep Relief Roll On
- Progressence Plus
- Stress Away

Ahh, Copaiba.  How do YOU use this awesome oil?

*Ok, ya'll... you know my heart here - I am not telling you to ditch the advise of your sage doctors.  I am simply telling you how these oils have changed MY life.  As always, use common sense and seek counsel from doctors and certified naturopaths.