Sunday, December 27, 2015


      Lemon is up next! The invigorating aroma of Lemon is truly refreshing and encourages clarity of thought. Lemon is cold pressed from the rind of the lemon. It takes about 3,000 lemons to produce 1 kilo of lemon oil! Lemon includes the naturally occurring constituent limonene, an antioxidant that has been linked to healthy immune system function. Known to strengthen several body systems, Lemon supports healthy digestive and respiratory systems as well as healthy skin. Lemon may also be used to enhance the flavor of foods. Try Lemon in your glass of water to insert a powerful dose of antioxidant support – just be sure to use glass or stainless steel so the Lemon does not react with harmful petrochemicals found in plastics.


      Peppermint…refreshing, invigorating, delightful! When you open a bottle of Young Living Peppermint, you will notice it does not smell like a breath mint or a candy cane…Peppermint is not mean to smell candy sweet. Rather, Peppermint smells fresh, vibrant and green. This oil is a little spicy so you may want to consider adding a drop or two to your glass of water, inside a vegetarian capsule, along with a carrier oil or in a teaspoon of honey rather than ingesting it plain. Peppermint is a great oil to use for sinus and respiratory health. When ingested prior to a workout, Peppermint may support increased performance and may also increase mental acuity and focus. Perhaps the best known way to use Peppermint is for digestive support. It supports healthy bowel function, enhances healthy gut function, maintains efficiency of the digestive tract and supports normal digestion. 

Oil Focus...Clary Sage

Oil Focus...Manuka

Friday, November 13, 2015


      Lavender is known as the Swiss Army Knife of oils. This oil is so versatile that the list of uses could stretch a mile! Whether diffused, applied topically or added to Epsom salts in a warm bath, Lavender is a great calming oil that promotes relaxation. When used prior to bedtime, Lavender promotes healthy rest and sleep patterns. Lavender can also be used to help ease normal stress moods and help in winding down one’s body after a long or strenuous day. Though better known for its calming effect, Lavender is also a great oil to support healthy skin and can be applied directly to the skin, used after heavy sun exposure or added to lotions, shampoos and other skin care products. 

Sunday, October 18, 2015

Why Essential Oils Work...

I just came across an article that my Naturopath wrote about essential oils and I wanted to share. What a great picture of why essential oils do what they do and how important the quality of them is. My naturopath is the most researched person I know and she never endorses anything that isn't backed by science. What a great article!

Essential Oils

Essential oils can have a profound effect on emotions and thinking patterns and the physiological way in which the effect occurs, making them valuable tools in building and maintaining health. When you inhale a fragrance, the molecules travel up the nose where they attach to receptor cells in the olfactory epithelium. They stimulate the lining of nerve cells that trigger electrical impulses to the olfactory bulb, which then transmits impulses to three places - the gustatory center, where taste is perceived; the amygdala, where emotional memories are stored; and other parts of the limbic system of the brain.
Of our senses, only the sense of smell is related directly to the limbic system of the brain, which is the emotional control center. Fear, joy, depression, anger and other emotions also come from this region of the brain. This is why scents can provoke powerful memories.
Additionally, the limbic lobe can activate the hypothalamus, which, among other things, serves as the hormonal control center. Odor also has a powerful effect on other physiological functions such as breathing, heart rate, and blood pressure.
It is these connections that are responsible for the powerful relationship between inhaling an essential oil and reduction of stress or emotional trauma, stimulation of the production of hormones, increase in energy levels, and other positive effects.
Although there are not a lot of them, there are some studies showing the positive effects of using essential oil products. Researchers at the Universities of Berlin and Vienna concluded that sandalwood and frankincense can increase levels of oxygen by as much as 28%. (The People's Desk Reference for Essential Oils Essential Science Pub 1999). Increased oxygen to the brain can cause a number of positive effects, including improvement in immune function, and energy levels.
Dr. Alan Hirsch from the Smell and Taste Treatment Center and Research Foundation, successfully used essential oils to reduce appetite and assist in weight loss in 3000 subjects during a 6-month period. This study was reported in the Annals of Clinical and Laboratory Science vol. 14, Sept/Oct No. 5.
As you might imagine, the quality of the oil is very important in terms of whether or not there is any therapeutic value in using it. Not everything sold or labeled as a pure essential oil is a therapeutic-grade product. The most powerful oils are known as first press - future pressings of the plant are weaker and weaker, and therefore less potent. Additionally, synthetic reproductions of oils are not only ineffective, but some can be toxic.
Just as it is best to get your nutrients from whole foods, it is best to get the therapeutic effects from the whole essential oil, rather than from extracts claiming to have therapeutic effects. They rarely do. And, the studies and historical use we are relying on to make recommendations of these products all involved the use of the whole oil product.
How can you tell what you're getting? In the U.S., we have no standards for the manufacturing of these products or the claims being made. So, you should know your supplier and know that only first press and pure essential oils are used in manufacturing, without any toxic chemicals. Also, you will find that you get what you pay for. Some of the essential oil products I have seen in health food stores do not sell for enough money to cover the cost of the drops of essential oil, let alone the packaging and other costs associated with marketing them.
In summary, high-quality essential oils are effective for both physical and emotional healing and can be a valuable part of your health "tool box."
Written by Dr. Pam Popper of The Wellness Forum

Essential Oils...

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Oil Post...Raven vs. RC

In case you missed my Periscope on Tuesday, here is the info I discussed...

RC – blend of 3 types of Eucalyptus, Myrtle, Peppermint, Pine, Lavender, Tsuga and Marjoram
  • Contains the naturally occurring constituents - eucalyptol, limonene, linalol, linalol acetate, and camphene (personal research opportunity)
  • Rub on feet or chest before exercising to uplift and inspire
  • Rub 3 drops on feet before bedtime to encourage a comforting atmosphere
  •    Add to V-6™ Vegetable Oil Complex to create a spa-like soothing atmosphere with massage
  •  Funny that this can be used to uplift and inspire and also to provide a comforting bedtime atmosphere but that’s one of the great things about essential oils- their multiple properties
  •  Really good oil for upper respiratory health
  •   Encourages throat health when applied topically to the outside of the throat
  •  Supports sinus health when applied topically to the outside of the nose, on a q-tip inside the nose and along the sinuses
  • Encourages ear health when applied on the bone behind the ear
  • Supports circulation throughout the lungs
  • Dilates the respiratory passageways
  • Opens up the respiratory system for healthy oxygen exchange
  • In a nutshell, this oil is pretty useful and effective!

Raven  - blend of Ravensara, Lemon, Wintergreen, Peppermint, Eucalyptus
  •  This oil takes it up a notch further from RC…it’s a powerful oil
  • Some not-so-well-known facts: Has the ability to support healthy adrenal glands as well as healthy bones, joints, and skin
  • Similar to RC, Raven is also great for dilating and strengthening the respiratory system
  • Supports a healthy nasal mucous membrane
  • Supports healthy lungs and throat when applied topically
  • Helps to dilate the respiratory system and open up oxygenating passageways
  • Excellent for opening up the respiratory system when diffused or directly inhaled
  • Highly effective when used as a suppository or enema with V-6 or a carrier oil – which can directly benefit the lungs within seconds of this application

·         These oils sound a lot alike  and in fact they make great companion oils
o   Powerfully effective and particularly beneficial when used together – alternating between the two
o   Fill a sink with steaming hot water…put Raven, RC and Wintergreen in the water, tent a towel over your head and inhale for a significantly effective tool in opening up the sinuses and increasing lung support
o   Basically RC is a go-to oil for overall upper respiratory health
o   Raven is the oil you want to use when you desire a significant strengthening of your respiratory and lung system health.
o   So if you are looking for some basic respiratory health support, reach for your RC

o   If you are looking for significant, potent and serious lung and respiratory support, reach for your Raven

Watch the video here (Youtube messed with it a little so it's wobbly and I apologize!)

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Fresh Kale Salad

A friend of mine made a delicious kale salad for our life group on Sunday and I fell in love with it! It was so simple - fresh kale, quinoa, and pomegranite seeds with a dressing of olive oil, lemon juice, lemon zest, garlic and agave. Seriously so amazing! I am picky when it comes to kale salads - I love kale but sometimes it can be overpowering in salads (IMO). This salad was so good that after I did dishes and everyone left, I had to grab it from the fridge and have another helping! Dana - you are awesome:-)

So, last night, my mom was visiting which of course called for trying some fun new recipes - since she happily eats anything I cook and is always very encouraging! I was kind of obsessed with kale salad and wanted to find a fun new recipe to try. After a little searching I found a great site ( that had a load of kale salad recipes - not all vegan but they were a great jumping board for my creative side:-) I modified one of her recipes and it turned out so good! I am now on a mission to find a new kind of kale salad each day as I have so much delicious, fresh kale and tomatoes from my tower garden to use.

Bold and Beautiful Kale Salad (I had to come up with something fun for a name!)
2 1/2  cups fresh, raw, washed kale chopped
1 cup cherry tomatoes cut in half (I used a combo of yellow and red)
1/2 cup chopped red pepper
1/2 cup chopped avocado
1/4 cup toasted sunflower seeds
Toss all ingredients together.

1/8 cup tahini
2 t soy sauce
2 T white vinegar
2 t maple syrup
pinch of red pepper flakes
Wisk together until smooth. Pour over salad and toss.

Sunday, October 11, 2015

White Lasagna With Roasted Butternut Squash and Spinach (Kylea's modified version:-) )

Since January, not only have I been completely vegan but I have also become gluten free for health-related issues (just a note... I do not believe gluten is a bad just doesn't do well in my body...therefore, many of my recipes are not gluten free because I still cook with gluten for my family).
After a delightful trip to the apple orchard/pumpkin patch last week, I had a beautiful butternut squash to use, loads of fresh kale from my garden and a box of gluten free lasagna noodles just asking to be used. I found a perfect recipe in Chloes's Vegan Italian Kitchen that was a must-try and the results were downright fabulous. I did modify the recipe for a few reasons - I didn't have any spinach so I used kale, I wanted a quick and easy recipe so I used dried minced onions and garlic powder instead of fresh onions and garlic and I eliminated the oil as I do not cook with oil anymore (see the end of this post for a quick blurb on why I choose to do this). Such a perfect fall treat on a breezy, cool day.

White Lasagna With Roasted Butternut Squash and Spinach (Kylea's modified version:-) )
12 oz butternut squash, peeled, seeded and diced (recipe says to roast but I modified)
sea salt and pepper
5 oz fresh kale, deveined and chopped
1 T minced dried onion
1 t garlic powder
1 1/2 cups raw cashews
3 cups water
1 T lemon juice
2 t sea salt
1/4 t black pepper
1 lb no boil lasagna noodles
tofu ricotta (recipe follows)

Fill pan half full with water and add squash. Cook until squash is tender, about 15 minutes. Drain. Place in food processor with salt and pepper to taste. Set aside.
In a food processor, combine onion, garlic, cashews, water, lemon juice, salt and pepper. Puree until smooth and creamy. In a 9x13 baking dish, spread a thin layer of sauce in the bottom. Arrange 4 lasagna noodles along the bottom, layer half the ricotta, 4 noodles, sauce, 1/2 the butternut squash, half the kale, sauce, 4 noodles, butternut squash, kale, remaining ricotta, and top with remaining sauce. Bake covered for 50 minutes or until noodles are tender and sauce is bubbly.

Tofu Ricotta (also modified)
1 T dried minced onions
1 t garlic powder
1 14oz package of drained extra firm tofu
2 T lemon juice
2 t sea salt
1 1/2 t black pepper
3/4 cup fresh basil
Combine all ingredients in a food processor and pulse until basil is chopped and tofu resembles ricotta cheese consistency. Set aside.

Eliminating Oils From the Diet
by Pamela A. Popper, Ph.D., N.D.
The Wellness Forum
I recently heard you speak and you emphasized the importance of eliminating oils from the diet.
I am young, have no signs of cardiovascular disease, it does not run in my family,
and I am wondering if it is ok to use oils in small amounts.
How important is it for someone like me to be totally compliant?
There are some compelling reasons for you to eliminate oils from the diet.
The first is that in my experience, people are more successful in maintaining optimal habits
when they have clear directions on what to do.
"Don't eat oil" is easier to understand and put into practice than "eat less oil."
 "Less" is a subjective term, and very difficult to translate into action.
Second, oils are actually easier to eliminate than most people imagine.
Just don't cook with them, read labels, and avoid products containing oil.
Anyone can watch Del Sroufe, Executive chef and co-owner of
Wellness Forum Foods making oil-free stir fry on our website at,
and members can consult the Wellness 101 curriculum book, which lists substitutions
for oil in cooking, baking, in salad dressings and other common foods that contain oil,
 and participate in Chef's Del's monthly calls for advice.
Third, you won't miss the oil. No one does. It does not add flavor to the food;
 it just adds fat and calories.
Last but not least, an American dies of cardiovascular disease every 37 seconds,
according to The American Heart Association. This should be a powerful incentive
for people to do everything they can to reduce their risk of developing coronary artery disease.
 Since oils have been proven to promote coronary artery disease,
we will continue to recommend eliminating them.
Circulation Volume 119(3)27 January 2009pp e21-e181 Heart Disease and
Stroke Statistics-2009 Update: A Report From the American Heart Association
Statistics Committee and Stroke Statistics Subcommittee

Friday, October 9, 2015

The positive and doable side of compliance...

This post is particularly geared towards my oily team but might be an interesting read for others as well...

I wanted to address an area that has intimidated many over the past few months...compliance. For those who don't know what I am talking about, we recently experienced a crack-down on the way we present oils...the FDA will not allow us to make any disease claims about our oils (in a nutshell, we can't say X oil helps with Y malady). When the topic of making everything compliant came to the table, many of us (myself included) shied away from talking quite so freely about oils because of the frustration and feelings of being totally ill-equipped to broach oils compliantly. However, in an attempt to break out of this insecure shell, I decided to jump in and start figuring out how to reframe my whole verbal repertoire in regard to oils. Over the past few months, after writing and teaching classes and talking to people about oils in a compliant manner, the mental and verbal switch has become easier and easier. It comes down to a few simple things: intentionality, practice and the mindset of health rather than illness. It's not as hard as it seems...there are so many ways to reframe a conversation or answer a question. The end result though is that we are spending our time talking about wellness and vibrant health rather than sickness, ailments and misery:-) When you feel as though your leaders or support teams within the company are being harsh or when your question seems to be answered in a somewhat vague manner, just remember we are all trying to get the hang of this and we will get better. We are trying to lead by example and make the transition as easy as possible by practicing this regularly ourselves. If you are unsure and need some help reframing something, just ask!

My encouraging advice to you is to stick with it, don't give up, allow yourself to feel a little frustrated but then use that frustration to fuel your motivation to learn a new way to present these powerful and inspirational oils!

Don't see something on this list that you would like help reframing? Send me a message...I'd love to assist!

My sweet vegan cook:-)

My oldest son loves to cook and a few years ago I created a vegan blog for him which he kept up for a while with his unique and creative recipes. Over the years however, his posting dropped off and just recently he picked up the desire to start posting his recipes again. He made a delicious vegan lasagna today that looked amazing (being gluten free, I was unable to indulge but I did make a fabulous Gluten-free Butternut Squash and Cashew Alfredo Lasagna for myself...recipe coming soon:-) ) and he and his brother demolished some big plate-fuls. I just had to share his post...find it here!

Sunday, October 4, 2015

A Note About Oils...Compliant Version:-)

A couple of years ago, about the time I started this blog, I wrote a post about what I had learned so far about oils (I had only been using them for 4 months when the original post was written!). It wasn't rocket science, nor was it particularly profound - however, it remains the most read post I have ever far! The problem? It was not compliant. So, here is my attempt at a revision...I hope it holds the same appeal and is as helpful as the last:-)
  • One of my biggest hopes when starting with essential oils is that the health of our family would be supported, boosted, improved on a number of different levels. In some areas, we saw our health and immunities strengthened almost immediately. In other areas, we did not see our health enhanced until we had consistently been using oils for several weeks. The key when using EOs? Persistence...consistency...willingness to try different combinations and applications. End result? Phenomenol health outcomes!
  • Oils work differently than other methods of improving health. One of the main differences (among many others) is the fact that oils may not have an immediate effect. It may take applications of oils every 15 minutes for an hour to see results. The important thing to note is that you are not filling your body with unwanted chemicals and additives and there are no harmful side-effects. It may be that you are used to turning to conventional methods to support your health and see immediate results but you also have to ask yourself: "Did I follow all the instructions listed for that method? What do I need to be careful of? Will x affect how y works?" When using oils, they may not have an immediate outcome and it's important to realize that results may take multiple applications but most likely, you will see evidence of health and wellness. 
  • Different oils work differently for different people so for example, don't expect that an oil that makes someone else experience peaceful rest will have the exact effect on you AND don't become discouraged when an oil doesn't seem to support your health like it did with someone else. God created our bodies very differently and the simple fact that one oil didn't have the expected effect on you doesn't mean the oils aren't effective. Peace and Calming and Stress Away support peaceful rest for my oldest son, yet Cedarwood is a perfect oil to give my husband, youngest son and myself to encourage peaceful rest. Don't give up if an oil doesn't seem to work "right". 
  • Using oils doesn't mean you will always experience perfect health! Though the consistent use of oils appears to support health and strong immunity, everyone experiences less-than-desired health at some point in life! AND from our experience, using oils on a daily basis encourages consistent health and immunity. Using oils in a variety of ways (diffusing, applying topically and ingesting) will provide maximum benefits and results.
  • Contrary to common belief, essential oils cannot cause allergic reactions (except ones containing citrus - if you have a citrus allergy, you should stay away from oils containing citrus). The reason is that essential oils (if they are pure and unadulterated) do not contain proteins, peptides, and amino acids which are the constituents that cause erroneous immune responses (allergies).  The body can produce a sort of "detox" reaction to some oils but this will subside over time (whereas an allergic reaction will continue with continued use, a detox reaction will get better and better with more use of the oil). Further, there are some oils that are "spicy" such as Oregano that can cause a burning sensation for some people and though it is not harmful, it can cause discomfort. Using a carrier oil with these types of oils can alleviate the burning. Peppermint and Eucalyptus are also "spicy" oils that might make your eyes water or your skin feel icy cold or tingly. Again, there is no harmful effect but it may cause some people to feel uncomfortable - again, using a carrier oil can help significantly. There is an interesting article about allergic reactions and detox to essential oils that can be found here.

Peppermint…refreshing, invigorating, delightful! When you open a bottle of Young Living. Peppermint, you will notice it does not smell like a breath mint or a candy cane…Peppermint is not mean to smell candy sweet. Rather, Peppermint smells fresh, vibrant and green. 

This oil is a little spicy so you may want to consider adding a drop or two to your glass of water, inside a vegetarian capsule, along with a carrier oil or in a teaspoon of honey rather than ingesting it plain. 

  • Peppermint is a great oil to use for sinus and respiratory health. 
  • When ingested prior to a workout, Peppermint may support increased performance and may also increase mental acuity and focus. 
  • Perhaps the best known way to use Peppermint is for digestive support. It supports healthy bowel function, enhances healthy gut function, maintains efficiency of the digestive tract and supports normal digestion. 

Saturday, October 3, 2015

Newly Compliant PSK Oils Coming Soon!

As most of you know, a few months ago we experienced a major adjustment to the way we can talk about our oils...throwing many of us into a confused spiral. There was a lot of frustration, insecurity and questioning - causing a huge transformation in mind-set. 

Admittedly, I was one of the individuals that reservedly took a few steps back, deleted all my oil posts from my blog and stopped being so outspoken about my oils because I simply didn't know how to present them from a wellness perspective. 

However, after taking some deep breaths, studying the resources available and practicing, I have found over the last few months that teaching and writing from a wellness perspective isn't so daunting. Sure, it still requires some work, practice and a willingness to learn - but it isn't as debilitating as I thought. Really, it's kinda awesome:-) After all, who wants to talk about sickness, ailments and maladies all the time? I would much rather relish the moments to talk about health, vitality and wellness...wouldn't you?! 

In the coming days, look for new and revised oily posts - many have been seen in part in the past but they are all revamped and 100% compliant. 

Loving the opportunity to embrace the mindset of health and wellness!

Back to School with Essential Oils

As school is back in session, kids are overloaded with information, parents are weary from juggling busy schedules...and it's the perfect time to focus on health and wellness. Whether you're a parent, teacher, or just someone interested in health, I hope you will find something that is helpful!

Let’s face it, there are plenty of days during the school year when we would much prefer to stay planted in bed than jump up and face the world! We all know that a good night’s rest on a regular basis is the best way to wake up refreshed. However, on the days when sleep is short and the to-do list is long, give your day a little kick-start with this Rise and Shine Spray. Inhale deeply and revel in the gift of a new day!

I am a homeschool mom and there are many days when I wake up and get going but I am not filled with energy and vigor. I feel my feet dragging and my eyelids drooping. A quick roll of this spicy combo will help support a healthy boost to your day.

Ever have a day when your mind seems to wander endlessly and the things you wanted to accomplish seem to be a distant and unrealistic aspiration? I know I have! Have your kids experienced days when their schoolwork takes twice as long as it should because the things around them seem far more interesting than the book in front of them? For those days when your mind is exhausted and your thoughts are scattered, enjoy an oily combo that will help support a healthy mental focus and give you and your kids a healthy focus.

When you need a quick and easy focus booster and don’t have a roller bottle made up, try one of these oils or oil combos to awaken your focus. Simply apply to the neck, temples and bottoms of feet or open the bottle and inhale deeply.

Long days, sports practices, daily responsibilities, and piles of homework can oftentimes lead to tired brains! When your child sits down to complete his/her homework with a mind that is overwhelmed and unequipped to take in any new information, diffuse one of these oils to support healthy brain functioning.

My oldest son is not a fan of math and daily work can oftentimes be self-defeating because of his lack of confidence. Diffusing oils in the school room or the area where your child completes his/her work can create an aromatic atmosphere that invokes confidence.

Whether it be from anxiety over a test, not enough rest the night before or school-time drama, sometimes tummies can use a little calming effect. 

Growing up can be emotionally taxing…changes, uncontrollable circumstances, learning new things, experiencing new responsibilities. I wouldn’t want to do it again! Sometimes kids just need a little dose of happy!

Kids running, yelling, rough housing, asking questions, reaching for snacks – all of these add up to a mom who wants to scream! Diffuse 1-2 of these oils for a gentle calming effect throughout the house.
Alternately, combine the following oils for a quick and easy topical application.

A deep and peaceful night of sleep generally equals a much better start and progression of the following day. To support peaceful rest, try one of the following recipes and end your day well.
Alternately, try this oily rub:

Focus on Nutrition- Back to School is a perfect time to focus on health and wellness. Check out these Young Living products that help support healthy functioning.

Once the school year begins, it seems particularly important to focus on wellness to help support a busy schedule and healthy family. Reach for these oils to maintain wellness amidst busy schedules and lots of social interaction. 

After a long day of classroom work, playing at recess or riding the bus, the hands of your young ones may be covered with less-than-desireable particles! Use this easy recipe for a lightly scented foaming hand soap and get those grimy fingers sparkling before snack time!

After a long day of school or a field trip to the zoo, hands big and small will likely need some washing. If a sink and soap are not freely available, reach for some of this to do the job. Clean and refresh your hands with Thieves waterless hand purifier, suitable for adults and children alike. To enter the giveaway, comment below on how you would like to use essential oils in your family. Make sure to comment by October 15th. Best answer wins the prize! Winner will be announced on October 16th. 

If you would like to learn how to get oils for yourself, please click the link below to learn how. I hope that this class has given you tips and ideas to start off your school year with wellness, energy and mental clarity! Thanks for joining me!

Thursday, September 24, 2015

Oil Focus...Lemon Myrtle

Lemon Myrtle
*Our Lemon Myrtle is grown in Australia
*Comes from a beautiful plant - it's a bush-like tree with delicate white flowers
*It smells sweet, citrusy and fresh, very similar to Lemongrass
*It can be used to add to cleaning products - place a few drops in your washing machine or a few drops on a damp rag and throw in with your clothes in the drier for a fresh scent.
*It works well in place of Thieves in homemade foaming hand soap - 2 T Dr. Bronners Soap, 1/2 t V-6 oil or Vitamin E oil, 5 drops Lemon Myrtle, fill with water
*Supports healthy Adrenals
*Increases immune function and supports a healthy immune system
*Great for respiratory and sinus health
*Encourages relaxation and calm - can be used in the evening or before bed to create a restful atmosphere
*Supports healthy skin
That's a snapshot! Give it a try:-) Next week we will be looking at another oldest son's favorite oil....