Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Lavender essential oil

Lavender essential oil is probably my favorite oil of all. It smells heavenly. I remember being pregnant with #2 and deeply breathing it in on the wall of my shower. It was so soothing and comforting. I did the same thing while in labor.  I've diffused it in kids rooms to help them sleep better. I put it in a rollerball bottle as a blend with other oils to promote sleep. I love adding it to lotion and deodorant recipes just because I LOVE the smell. My five year old loves it on her pillow at night. It's my "windex" when it comes to skin issues. Have you ever seen the movie My Big Fat Greek Wedding? He puts windex on everything. I put lavender on everything! Cuts, scrapes, bites, stings, irritations, etc. I also mix it with frankincense and melaleuca for an "owie" mix. Post labor I used it for the after pains. Did you know after pains increase with each baby??? I sure didn't! Oww!

Some of the many uses are:
Appetite Loss
Bites and Stings
Soothes Breasts
Chicken Pox
Club Foot
Diabetic Sores
Diaper Rash
Bug repellent
Hay fever
 Hyper activity
Jet Lag
Mental Stress
Mood Swings
Physical Stress
Poison Ivy/oak
Post labor
Rheumatoid Arthritis
Dry Skin
Stretch marks
Teeth Grinding
Teeth pain
Varicose Veins

Try lavender today! If you have any questions please don't hesitate to contact me, I'd be happy to help you.

I am not a doctor. I am not intending to cure, prevent, or treat any disease. Please contact your doctor before embarking on any health journey.

Saturday, March 14, 2015

Lemon essential oil

Lemon Essential Oil

I love love love lemon essential oil. It smells amazing! It has wonderful properties and is very uplifting. I use it in my "flu bomb" blend, which I actually use for any sickness, we've never had the flu. I like to diffuse it with onguard. I have added it to a spray bottle with purify and water to freshen the interior of my car (which always has a "smell" we can't figure out with five kids) This freshens the interior and gets rid of random "mystery" smells. I put a drop in my water to detoxify. I add a drop to salad dressings. I use it in chicken marinade. It can replace lemon juice in any recipe. 

It takes 3000 lemons to produce one kilo of oil!!! Wow! Potent stuff. If applied to skin, it can be applied without dilution (neat) if desired, but do avoid sunlight for 12 hours.

There are sooo many uses for lemon essential oil, including:
Air pollution
Blood pressure regulation
Blood sores
Dry throat
Furniture Polish
Greasy or oily hair
Gum/grease removal
Intestinal Parasites
Kidney Stones
Lymphatic Cleansing
Physical Energy
Postpartum Depression
Skin toning
Throat Infection
Varicose Veins
Water Purification

Wow!!! So many uses for lemon essential oil! It is such a universal oil. I love it and I know you will too. Make sure you are ordering a pure essential oil. The fda only requires an essential oil to be 10% pure oil to list it as 100 % pure. The oils I use ARE 100% pure and are sourced from the best possible place for the particular plants to grow. 

Because the fda doesn't like anyone making claims they haven't "approved"
I am not a doctor. The information I have provided is purely informational and not intending to treat any disease. Please consult with your doctor before embarking on any treatment.

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Essential oils and me

Essential oils seem to be all the rage lately. At first I really couldn't get into it. I mean, I'd been using a few essential oils for more than a decade but didn't really "know" a lot about any others. I used lavender in the shower, it was heavenly. I used tea tree oil in my cleaners as well as to treat wounds. I also used eucalyptus in the shower if someone was sick. I occasionally bought a few others for scents in lotion. But really, that was about it. About a year ago, a friend of mine really started getting into "oils". I appreciated that she was switching to a more natural way of life. I think that's wonderful, obviously. But have you ever had an ailment of some sorts and there's that person that says "You should use an essential oil". Uh, sure, what oil? And how? That's what I always thought. For years I just wanted to scream "I don't know what you mean by use an essential oil". Granted, I never took the time to look into it or pick up a book about it. After awhile, my friends enthusiasm rubbed off on me. I really wanted to learn more about oils. So I had her come over and teach a class to me and my friends. I knew I wanted to learn how to use them. So I purchased a kit. I bought into a wholesale account right away. It's nice when you purchase this kit as your enrollment purchase. You get tons of oils and you can immediately start purchasing at a wholesale price. Not to mention you can also start earning points for free products with your future purchases. So I got my kit in the mail and just kind of stared at it. Every once in awhile I'd find something to try the oils on but most things weren't really working for me. That was about a year ago. I now have a 2 month old baby (the reason for my HUGE hiatus, baby #5!!!!) I now look back and realize that my body was all out of whack and pregnant and I'm not sure anything would have worked on me. Granted, some pregnant women love using oils and it helps them a lot. Digestive blend is great for heartburn. I did use lavender a lot to help me sleep and it worked wonders! Now that I'm not pregnant and I have a lot more oil information in my brain, I'm finding more and more things are working for me. I use Joyful blend for a happy burst of energy. I use lavender on my self and my whole family. I even use it on the baby, diluted of course, when she is refusing to nap all day. Last time I did it she went down for a 3 hour nap!!! It was amazing! I have been using protective blend in our diffusers often. I have a rollerball of it for the kids to put on their feet. I have to say, this is the first winter that we haven't been taken down with some kind of sickness. Generally we are extremely healthy but atleast once over the winter (usually by now) we all get hit with something hard. I think between the protective blend and bone broth we've been consuming daily, that's kept us nice and healthy. Another example, suddenly felt really ill on two occasions and both times he put digestive blend on his belly and drank a drop of peppermint in water. Within minutes he felt so much better. That's what sold him =)

So all that being said, I would like to take some time here on this blog and help some of you out there to learn what the heck these "oils" are about. It is very intimidating at first. There are SO many of them. What do you do with them, where do you apply them, what if they don't work? I'll still be bringing you yummy recipes and health tips, but I will be adding in some information on oils too.

Let me start with protective blend and tell you how we've been using it. It has many uses, but the way we've been using it is to stay healthy this winter. I run it most days for a few hours in our diffusers. I also diluted it in a glass rollerball bottle for application to everyone's feet. So far this is working great for us! I also add a drop to coconut oil when we oil pull (Yes I said "we", even my kids oil pull!!!) This is supposed to help "heal" cavities. I don't know yet if that works, I'll report back. But if nothing else, I imagine that the oil is absorbing into our bodies for an extra dose of healthiness. 

If you'd like to learn how to get some great oils at a wholesale price, please contact me!

Please feel free to comment here with any questions or if there's a particular oil you'd like me to feature.

Thursday, January 23, 2014

FREE online conference

There is an FREE online conference called GMO: What You Need to Know going on soon. 4 more days to register for FREE. I encourage all to sign up and listen. We all need to be informed about what we are eating. Please sign up:

From the website:

January 27-30, 2014
Join Stacy Malkan and 15+ leading scientists, farmers, medical doctors, business leaders, advocates, and wellness experts to learn about the genetic manipulation of our food system, how to avoid GMOs, and why this matters for the health of your family and future generations. Your choices today will decide the future of our food!

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Pictures from our garden

I apologize for my hiatus but we've been busy enjoying the summer, beach vacation, amusement parks, purging the house (a late spring cleaning), family visiting, and last of all purchasing a house which is requiring tons of repairs to be done, taking up tons of time! For the first time EVER we have a successful garden. I have always had the brownest thumbs and plants just die when I look at them. This year I enlisted the help of the kids with weeding, planting, and watering and we have success! In addition to our planted garden, our berry patch is bursting with berries! It's all very exciting around here ;)

Here are some pictures:

A tiny strawberry


Corn is getting big!

Basil! My fav fresh herb!

Green tomatoes

Tons of tomato plants



Bright green frog camping out in our pond


Squash. Picked two today!

A view of the garden

Deep in the berry patch

Look, there's a little girl growing in the garden!
Lots of peppers!

Jailed himself

Friday, May 17, 2013

Strawberry shortcake monkey bread cupcakes recipe review

Strawberry Shortcake Monkey Bread, that's a mouthful! A mouthful of yumminess! These "cupcakes" are gluten free and grain free, and can also be made sugar and dairy free!!! You would absolutely never know these are gluten free. They are just that good. The whole recipe can be found over at Real Sustenance. I made some very minor changes and I'll tell you what I did but go over and check out her blog because it's great! Especially if you are gluten/grain/dairy/sugar free!!! I've made these twice now (in the same week) and everyone is requesting I make them again.

The recipe says it makes 10 "cupcakes" (though I don't really find these to be very cupcake like, more muffin like) but I used a regular muffin tin and was able to get 12. It would be great to be able to double the recipe (which I haven't tried yet) but almond flour is not cheap my friends. Which brings me to the next thing...

The second time I made them I used flour I made from grinding up sunflower seeds in my vitamix. These still came out GREAT with a slightly different taste since you can really taste the sunflower seeds. I also have heard that mixing sunflower seed flour with baking powder or soda at a certain ratio can turn it green. When these first came out of the oven they were not green. After sitting for a little while they maybe had a slight green tinge, but was only noticeable because we were looking for it.

I used 1/2 ts of salt both times instead of 1/4 ts. 1/4 ts just didn't seem like enough. They were not at all salty, so I highly recommend that.

I used butter and cane sugar but there's options in the original recipe for not using either if that's something you avoid.

The second time I made them I forgot the powdered sugar glaze and it wasn't missed, so skip it if you like.

Overall these were great and I will continue to make them. Thank you for this amazingly healthy recipe.

I think I may try blueberries next time...though that completely changes the name of them ;)

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Cheese Stuffed Baby Peppers

These little baby peppers are so delicious and easy to make. Thanks to our long time family friend, Lori, for the great idea! This is a very versatile recipe. You can use any combination your heart desires. My favorite is mozzarella, Parmesan, and jack. I've also used cheddar. You just toss the cheese with salt, pepper, fresh chopped garlic (though I've used dried minced garlic when I didn't feel like chopping) and any other herb you would like. Great appetizer, snack, or side dish! My kids gobble these up! They can be made on a grill or in the oven with a pepper rack, or in the oven packed in a oven safe dish (I've used round pyrex dishes and packed them in there so they can all stand up. You just want to make sure the sides of the dish are taller than the peppers. The pepper rack is really awesome for this, highly recommended.)

Cheese Stuffed Baby Peppers
by Amanda @ Natural and Organic Lifestyle

1 lb baby bell peppers, organic
Approximately 1 lb of cheese, any combination  you like (parm, moz, jack, cheddar, etc)
3 cloves of garlic, minced, organic
Salt to taste (I use about 1/2 ts)
Pepper to taste (again I use about 1/2 ts)
TS or to taste of any herb you like, I've used thyme, parsely, and basil

Shred cheese and toss with salt, pepper, garlic, and herbs. Slice the tops off of the peppers and remove seeds. Stuff with cheese to the top and place in pepper rack or oven safe dish. Repeat for all the peppers. If using a pepper rack and your pepper is too small for the hole (also keep in mind they will get soft when cooking and will squish a little) stick a toothpick through the pepper across the hole to keep it in. Place on grill and cook until cheese is melted. Or place in oven at 350 degrees (though 400 works too if you're cooking something else at the same time, very forgiving) for 10-20 minutes until cheese is melted. Let cool slightly, the cheese will be hot, then serve!

I hope you enjoy these as much as we do!

Friday, April 26, 2013

GMO: crops to avoid, companies to avoid, and companies to support

Of course, the best thing to do to avoid GMO's is to stay away from packaged foods and avoid whole foods that are currently gmo'd. Cook from scratch. Grow and preserve your own food. Join a local organic CSA.

According to the Non-GMO project, the following crops are the highest risk crops of being gmo:
  • Alfalfa (first planting 2011)
  • Canola (approx. 90% of U.S. crop)
  • Corn (approx. 88% of U.S. crop in 2011)
  • Cotton (approx. 90% of U.S. crop in 2011)
  • Papaya (most of Hawaiian crop; approximately 988 acres)
  • Soy (approx. 94% of U.S. crop in 2011)
  • Sugar Beets (approx. 95% of U.S. crop in 2010)
  • Zucchini and Yellow Summer Squash (approx. 25,000 acres)
The following crops are at risk for contamination:
  • Beta vulgaris (e.g., chard, table beets)
  • Brassica napa (e.g., rutabaga, Siberian kale)
  • Brassica rapa (e.g., bok choy, mizuna, Chinese cabbage, turnip, rapini, tatsoi)
  • Curcubita (acorn squash, delicata squash, patty pan)
  • Flax
  • Rice
At this time, the following companies are companies that either have products that contain gmo's and/or donated a significant amount of money to defeat the labeling of gmo's:
 List provided by

Campbell’s - $250,000.00

  • Healthy Request
  • Wolfgang Puck Soups
  • Pace Foods
  • Pepperidge Farms
  • V-8

Cargill, Inc - $202,229.36

  • Truvia Natural Sweetener
  • Shady Brooks Farms
  • Diamond Crystal Salt
  • Liza
  • Nature Fresh
  • Peter’s Chocolate
  • Wilbur Chocolate
  • Honeysuckle White
  • Rumba Meats
  • Good Nature

Coca Cola -  $1,164,400.00

  • Vitamin Water
  • Smart Water
  • Dasani
  • Nestea
  • Minute Maid
  • Honest Tea
  • Odwalla
  • Vitaminenergy

Con-Agra - $1,076,700.00

  • Orville Redenbacher’s Organic
  • Hunt’s Organic
  • Lightlife
  • Alexia
  • Healthy Choice
  • Hebrew National

Dean Foods -  $253,950.00

  • Horizon
  • Silk
  • White Wave

General Mills - $908,200.00

  • Nature Valley
  • Fiber One
  • Cheerios
  • Cascadian Farm
  • Muir Glen
  • Lärabar
  • Gold Medal Organic
  • Food Should Taste Good

Heinz/Hains Celestial - $500,000.00

(Hains is actually owned by Heinz, Phillip Morris, Monsanto, Citigroup, Exxon-Mobil, Wal-Mart and Lockheed Martin)
  • Earth’s Best
  • Spectrum Organics
  • Garden of Eatin’
  • Casbah
  • Rice Dream
  • Soy Dream
  • WestSoy
  • TofuTown
  • MaraNatha
  • Mountain Sun
  • Walnut Acres
  • Fruiti di Bosco
  • Health Valley
  • Bearitos
  • Bread Shop
  • Celestial Seasonings

Kellogg’s - $632,500.00

  • Kashi
  • Muslix
  • Nutrigrain
  • Bear Naked
  • Morningstar Farms
  • Gardenburger

Kraft - $551,148.25

  • Snapple
  • ReaLemon
  • Triscuit
  • SnackWell’s
  • South Beach
  • Boca
  • Back to Nature
  • Nabisco

Nestle -   $1,169,400.00

  • Pure Life
  • Pelligrino
  • Perrier
  • Poland Spring
  • Gerber
  • California Pizza Kitchen
  • Tribe Mediterranean
  • Sweet Leaf Tea

PepsiCo $2,249,661.61

  • Miss Vickie’s
  • Sun Chips
  • Aquafina
  • SoBe
  • Harvest Crunch
  • Dole
  • Ocean Spray
  • Tropicana
  • Miranda
  • Tazo
  • Quaker
  • Naked Juice
  • Mother’s

Unilever – $467,000 (source)

  • Salada
  • Knorr
  • Ben & Jerry’s
 Here is a list of companies that are GOOD options:
  • 7th Generation
  • Amy’s Kitchens
  • Apple and Eve
  • Applegate
  • Azumaya
  • Blue Diamond
  • Bob’s Red Mill
  • Bossa Nova
  • Cal Organics
  • Cedarlane
  • Cell-nique
  • Choice Organic Teas
  • Clif Bar/ Nectar Fruit
  • Coombs Family Farmers
  • Cosorzio All Natural
  • Country Choice
  • Crystal Geyser Alpine Water
  • Doctor Kracker
  • Dr. McDougall’s
  • Dr. Praeger
  • Eat Raw
  • Echo Farms
  • EcoMeal
  • Eddie’s Pasta
  • Eden Foods (The only company NOT using harmful plastic in the lining of their cans as bonding agent!)
  • Edward and Sons
  • Endangered Species Chocolate
  • Ener-G
  • EnvironKiz
  • Fantastic Foods.
  • Giving Nature
  • Golden Temple
  • Go Naturally
  • Greenway Farms
  • Harvest Bay
  • Hawthorne Valley
  • Ian’s Natural Foods
  • Koyo Organics
  • Lakewood
  • Lesser Evil
  • Let’s Do…Organics
  • LifeStream
  • Living Harvest
  • Lundberg Family
  • Madhava
  • Murray’s Chicken
  • Nasoya
  • Native Forest
  • Natural by Nature
  • Nature Factor
  • Nature’s Path
  • Newman’s Own Organic
  • Organic Prarie
  • Organic Valley
  • Pacific Naturals
  • Pamela’s
  • Peace Cereal
  • Petalumi
  • Rapunzel
  • Real Foods
  • Republic of Teas
  • Road’s End Organics
  • San J
  • Sensible Foods
  • Seven Star Farms
  • Sunergia
  • Tasty Bite Indian
  • Terra Nostra
  • Texmati
  • Theo chocolates
  • Think Organic
  • Turtle Island Tofurky
  • Vermont Mystic Pie
  • Vitasoy
  • Vita Spelt
  • Vivani Chocolate
  • Wizard’s Saucery
  • Woodstock Farms
  • XOXOXO chocolate
  • Yogi Tea
  • Zija
  • Zoe’s Granola

Saturday, April 6, 2013

Super Silky Lotion

This is a super silky, hydrating lotion. Caution: when it goes on it looks very shiny (which is why I've hesitated on posting this) BUT it soaks in rather quickly and the shine goes away. This is a wonderful lotion I've been making for quite awhile and our whole family loves it. I was able to order all these items from Amazon, so that's an option if you can't find them locally.

Super Silky Lotion
by Amanda @ Natural and Organic Lifestyle

1/2 cup organic coconut oil
1/2 cup organic grapeseed oil
1 cup raw organic shea butter
Optional: Essential oil for fragrance, I use about 10 drops

Mix all ingredients together in a blender. Store in an airtight container. Makes 2 cups.
Slather on =)