Wednesday, August 25, 2010

The Forgiveness Meditation

This was shared with me by a friend and I wanted to share it with you as well. Enjoy

A simple and ultimately profound meditation is to close you eyes and breathe in the word "I" and exhale the words "forgive you."

Silently repeat “I forgive you” as long as needed and apply to all thoughts, feelings, and any other phenomena or sense of self or "other" in your meditation until still.

Neither reason, nor knowledge of an event is required to forgive.
Forgiveness is complete within itself, transcending all knowledge and reason.
It peels away the layers of judgment we hold on everything until we are finally left in the silent Love of God.

Our ultimate truth is unconditional Love.
Forgive means to first give (fore give).
All you really have to give from inside is unconditional Love.
The rest is conditioned responses of which you can also forgive.

It is wonderful to do going to sleep and waking up so that it penetrates deep into the subconscious.

Practicing this meditation instills the habit of being, knowing, and remembering love.
To first present unconditional love causes the spontaneous erasing of memories resulting in “forgive and forget.”

Only judgment holds onto past memories or future fears keeping you dead or asleep to your Truth.

“Forgiveness dissolves all but Love.”
- Robert Lodge Groves

Monday, August 23, 2010

Popcorn & Lung Disease

Is your microwave popcorn causing you lung disease? According to an article sent to me featured on some companies have reformulating to remove the deadly diacetyl, the chemical in artificial butter flavoring that has been blamed for sickening hundreds of workers, killing a handful and destroying the lungs of at least three microwave popcorn addicts. Unfortunately the ingredients they are now using may be just as bad or worse than the diacetyl they removed.

If you or anyone you love enjoys microwave popcorn this article is a must read especially if they have any lung issues!

Natural Mold Killers

We were blessed to receive a gently used bedroom suite for our middle son recently. The downside was that it came from relatives who have mold in their home and brought some mold with it. Mold is not a good thing for anyone to have around but son two has asthma so it is even more urgent to rid the furniture of the mold.

We started by wiping down the furniture with a vinegar water mixture to clean and disinfect. Then I started researching natural mold killers. I knew that lavendar is one natural mold killer but wanted more in my arsenal for peace of mind. These are some natural mold killers I found. I am starting with the tea tree oil spray and will report my results. In the meantime, I hope that these will help you in your fight against mold.

Natural Mold Killing Solutions:

Tea Tree Spray
2 tsp Tea Tree Oil
2 cups Pure Water

Mix in a spray bottle and spray over affected surface. Allow to dry. Tea tree doesn't smell the best but the smell will go away.

Grapefruit Seed Spray
20 drops of Grapefruit Seed Extract
2 cups Pure Water

Mix in a spray bottle and spray over affected surface. Allow to dry. This mixture is recommended for showers and most effective when sprayed daily over the area.

Vinegar Spray
Pour vinegar straight into spray bottle (do not dilute) and spray affected area. Vinegar is a natural bleach so do not use this spray on areas you don't want lighter.

Borax naturally prevents mold and disinfects thus making it a great mold killer for your cloth shower curtains.

Our best result was with the Tea Tree Oil mixture.  It worked so well killing the mold and odor that my mom and dad bought some tea tree oil to treat their house as they were building it.
Please post if you have a favorite natural mold killer that you have had good results with.


Soap Nuts are the best natural laundry detergent I have found. These little beauties come from a tree and despite their name they are actually the dried fruit from the tree. The seeds are harvested to be used and to be planted to make sure there are soap nut trees for as long as people want soap nuts.

Reasons I love them -

- They're inexpensive! I'm frugal so this is my #1 reason for liking them. They average $0.15-$0.19 per load of laundry depending on the size of bag you purchase.

- They work! These little beauties keep the laundry odor free and clean as well as soft - even with boys!

- I no longer use fabric softener! Soap nuts softens your laundry much as vinegar does. (In case you didn't know it - vinegar is great for softening your laundry!) For a nice smell I simply put 10 or more drops of my favorite essential oil or oil blend on an old wash cloth that I planned to throw out and place it in the dryer.  Lavender works great when washing the sheets and Orange is wonderful for the towels.

- I feel good about using them! They are sustainable and natural. I am protecting my family and my planet! Yeah me!

One bag of 5 soap nuts washes about 5-7 loads of laundry (depending on your water) and then you remove the old and put in new. My husband grew tired of having to change the soap nuts out so I started making liquid. (See recipe below) This made him very happy and since he does do laundry, as do my sons, it is important to make sure they are happy about the laundry procedures. :)

Check out our website for natural laundry soap you can feel good about.


To make Soap Nut Liquid simply add 16 soap nuts to 6 cups of pure water. Bring to a boil and reduce to a simmer. I simmer mine covered. Simmer for about an hour. Allow liquid to cool and remove soap nuts. Store liquid in an airtight glass container. I store mine in the refrigerator to extend the shelf life. Even in the refrigerator the liquid should be used within a few days. Never a problem at my house.

If you like your clothes to smell good I recommend using an old wash cloth as a dryer sheet. Place a few drops of your favorite essential oil or essential oil blend on the wash cloth and through it in the dryer with your clothes.

If you have extra smelly clothes or want extra softness - use a quarter to half cup of white distilled vinegar along with the soap nuts liquid. I do this with our towels and sheets and I love the clean softness that results. Be careful with vinegar as it can lighten dark clothes if the dye is not colorfast. I use it as a bleach alternative since my youngest is allergic to chlorine bleach.

Wishing you wellness,


Wednesday, August 18, 2010


Eating well is just as important for beautiful skin as the products you put on your skin. I found a great article in the Energy Times magazine that listed the best foods for beautiful skin. My favorite is the dark chocolate, which I personally think should be a food group. ;) I've listed the highlights and created a link to the magazine at the bottom of this blog.

Dark Chocolate is packed with phytonutrients. The flavonols found in dark chocolate have been shown to increase blood flow - good for the heart and the skin. The recommendation is an ounce of at least 60% cacao chocolate.

Tomatoes provide beta-carotene, calcium, iron, lutein/zeaxanthin, lycopene, magnesium, potassium, vitamins C and E. Wow, all that in a tomato!

Yogurt provides B-complex vitamins (stress defense), calcium, phosphorus, potassium, and probiotics to keep your system running smooth.

Blueberries contain anhtocyanins (protect collagen from free-radicals), ellagic acid, lutein/zeaxanthin, potassium, and vitamins C and E.

Walnuts offer copper, ellagic acid ( a potent antioxidant that helps ease inflammation and retard collagen breakdown), L-arginine, manganese, melatonin, omega-3 fats, and vitamin E.

Spinach provides alpha lipoic acid (ALA) (works with other antioxidants in the skin to reduce inflammation caused by the sun), beta-carotene, folate, lutein/zeaxanthin, magnesium, potassium, and vitamins C and E.

There are more foods out there that a good for you so don't stop here. A wise doctor told me once "the key to health is a colorful plate." Make sure to choose organic as often as you can. A certified nutritionist friend told a class I was in that any food not organic can be GMO.

Wishing you wellness!



Since I gave you the scary bad info about refined and processed sugar I thought I should give you some good news about natural sweeteners. Here is a list that I have compiled. I will note my favorites and the ones I have had recommended by people I trust.

My personal favorite - Stevia. Stevia is a South American herb that has been used as a sweetener by the Guarani Indians of Paraguay for hundreds of years. The leaves of this small, green Stevia rebaudiana plant have a delicious and refreshing taste that can be 30 times sweeter than sugar. You can buy powdered or liquid. I love the liquid, especially the flavored. It works so well in my water and herb tea. Not good for baking though:(

Xylitol is commonly used in sugar free products and especially in chewing gum because of the positive effects on teeth. I was amazed at the many benefits of xylitol as reported by Wikipedia. Check it out

Erythritol is a naturally occurring sugar alcohol that is found in our bodies, as well as in many fruits, vegetables and even certain fermented foods. Make sure the erythritol you use comes from an organic source!
• Virtually calorie-free (0.2 cals/gram)
• A glycemic index of zero, so while it sweetens, it does so without adding calories or spiking blood sugar the way other sweeteners often do.
• Research indicates that for most people, it's highly digestible!

Certified Organic Sugar Cane. The cane juice, rich in molasses, vitamins and minerals, is extracted, clarified, evaporated and crystallized. The result is a blond- colored, delicious and natural organic sugar that will enhance all your favorite recipes. Use as a one-for-one replacement for refined white sugar. Great tasting but high glycemic index for those of us concerned about our blood sugar.

Organic Sucanat® is a whole cane sugar. It's made by simply crushing freshly cut sugar cane, extracting the juice and heating it in a large vat. Once the juice is reduced to a rich, dark syrup, it is hand-paddled. Hand paddling cools and dries the syrup, creating the dry porous granules.

Because Sucanat still contains all of the cane's natural molasses, it has a deep brown color and a distinct, natural molasses flavor that enhances many foods. It can be substituted for brown sugar in any recipe and it is especially good in chocolate-based recipes, for baking and for BBQ sauces and marinades. It is an excellent source of iron, calcium, vitamin B6, potassium and chromium, which helps balance blood sugar. This is what our cooking demo guru recommended for use in baked goods.

Organic Turbinado Sugar is made by crushing the freshly-cut sugar cane to squeeze out the juice, rich in, vitamins and minerals. The cane juice is evaporated and spun in a centrifuge, or turbine, to produce the large sparkling golden crystals. I have used this as a brown sugar substitute and people loved the taste.

Organic Molasses is a blackstrap molasses with a rich, full-bodied robust flavor that adds natural color and opulent caramel molasses tones to recipes. It is especially good in molasses cookies, in other baked goods, breads, sauces, BBQ sauces and in marinades. It can be used as a one-for-one replacement for refined blackstrap molasses. It is loaded with vitamins, minerals and trace elements naturally present in the sugar cane plant and is a good source of iron, vitamin B6, potassium, calcium and magnesium.

Now that you have some sweet choices (couldn't resist), experiment and enjoy!

Wishing you wellness,



Recently my husband and I attended a gluten-free baking demo at our local Whole Foods Market. The certified nutritionist mentioned that sugar disables white blood cells. Being a research nut I decided to look for the research and was shocked! Here is an excerpt from an article I found along with a link to the rest of the article. The irritating part is that this research was reported in 1973!! I don't know about you but I hadn't heard about it. Check it out for yourself.

First of all, in 1973 the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition published a study by A. Sanchez et al, "Role of sugars in human neutrophilic phagocytosis", November, 1180-1184, showing that ingesting 100 grams of simple sugar lowers white blood cell activity for up to five hours. He got this result using processed honey, table sugar, and processed orange juice. This translates into a 50% reduction in the ability of white blood cells to engulf bacteria. The immune suppressing effect begins within ten minutes of ingesting the sugar. Lowered white blood cell activity means your immune system and it's ability to fight infection, is impaired.

White, refined sugar is also bleached with Chlorine Bleach, a substance that many people are sensitive to. Chlorine, when it combines with organic compounds, converts to Dioxin, a lethal chemical. No one should ever consume any substances that have been exposed to chlorine or chlorine bleach, nor use paper products that have been bleached.


Wishing you wellness,



Quite a few people have been asking me about Mineral Makeups lately. Specifically some have been asking why most mineral makeups cause them to break out. My research has shown a couple of common ingredients in mineral makeup that could very well be the culprits if you have experienced breakouts, irritation, redness, and dryness from your mineral makeups.

Bismuth Oxychloride an inorganic ingredient found in the majority of mineral cosmetics. In some brands it is the main irritant that often causes itching, rashes and mild to severe cystic acne. If you have had a reaction to mineral cosmetics in the past it is likely because of the bismuth oxychloride in the product.

Bismuth oxychloride is a by-product of copper and lead refining and it can be found on the periodic table. What surprised me is that bismuth oxychloride resembles arsenic and antimony chemically. It is also considered a heavy metal. Cosmetically, bismuth oxychloride is considered a pearlizing agent and produces a high shine.

An article from reveals that Talc is closely related to the potent carcinogen asbestos. Talc particles have been shown to cause tumors in the ovaries and lungs of cancer victims. For the last 30 years, scientists have closely scrutinized talc particles and found dangerous similarities to asbestos. Responding to this evidence in 1973, the FDA drafted a resolution that would limit the amount of asbestos-like fibers in cosmetic grade talc. However, no ruling has ever been made and today, cosmetic grade talc remains non-regulated by the federal government. This inaction ignores a 1993 National Toxicology Program report which found that cosmetic grade talc, without any asbestos-like fibers, caused tumors in animal subjects. Read more from

Another concern I have read time and again is "nano-particles." There is much concern that particles too small will be easily absorbed into the skin and become a health concern.

As with all your products, reading the label is important but knowing what to look for is even better. If you have a question about an ingredient and aren't sure where to look, let us know. We're happy to help.

Wishing you health and wellness!


The older I get the more I want to find things that help keep my metabolism going strong and keep my energy level up. As you know I do Tai Chi and Qigong of a morning. Among all the wonderful things this does for me, it wakes up my metabolism giving me energy for my day. Nutrients that should be a part of our diet can also provide energy for our bodies. Recently I came across a list of some and wanted to share them with you.

Amino Acids: Amino acids are building blocks to protein. They help to maintain muscle mass and tissue and provide fuel for the body. They also help metabolism.

Pyruvate: Pyruvate improves endurance by enhancing the transport of glucose into the muscles, increasing energy and stamina, allowing you to exercise, work, and play harder and longer. This aids in burning more calories.

Ubiquinone: A nutrient that aids the body in transforming food to energy.

Biotin: helpful in metabolizing protein, fats, and carbohydrates.

Magnesium Citrate: helps convert blood sugar into energy.

Vitamin B5 (Pantothenic Acid): is essential in producing, transporting, and releasing energy from fat.

Niacin: helps to metabolize fats, proteins, and carbohydrates.

These statements are not intended as medical advice, and have not been evaluated by the FDA.

Wishing you wellness,



I have been practicing Tai Chi and Qigong for almost six years now. I originally started because I was looking for something I could do that would not cause my heart arrhythmia to flair up. I had always been active and when the cardiologist said I needed to not allow stress of any kind because it could kill me I was motivated to find an activity that would help heal me and my heart.

I searched the Internet and found Tai Chi and Qigong. According to articles on WebMD and Mayo Clinic there is research showing the benefits for both body and heart. (See article links below.) I even found an article from a local hospital about the success they have had using Tai Chi for their heart patients. I decided to give it a try.

Since then I am not the only one who has noticed a difference. Tai Chi and Qigong gets my engine running in the morning. Routine practice along with nutrition has allowed me to be off my heart medicine and arrhythmia is a rarity and much less severe when it does occur.

If you are looking for a relaxing yet effective exercise to promote health and wellness I would encourage you to take a look at Tai Chi and Qigong. Check your local listings for an instructor. In order to practice when I want without leaving my house I use Gaiam DVD's.

Wishing you wellness!



This is one of those recipe finds that I tried because it sounded so ridiculous. Guess what? I love it! I have fine, limp hair and this holds well without feeling like a helmet head. Word of warning! If you use a fine mist sprayer (I did) then trust that it is on your hair - don't keep spraying until you see it on your hair! By then it's too late and you may as well wash and start over. Enjoy!

2 - 4 Organic lemons

Pure Water - enough to cover lemons

Slice lemons and simmer for about an hour. Add water to keep lemons covered with water. Cool, strain, and put into spray bottle. Lasts about a week refrigerated.

Wishing you wellness,