Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Homemade Vitamin Water

Something's been going around here. All my boys have complained of scratchy throats and have had lots of runny noses. What do we do in those times? Break out our homemade vitamin water, of course! I wrote about it last year and you can see it here, but I want to tell you again how WELL IT WORKS! As long as you notice your symptoms and 'catch' them in time, Shaklee's Defend and Resist will be your best friend! Our oldest boy will even chew the Defend and Resist because he likes the taste and he knows it helps him feel better!

I made a few batches of our vitamin water for the boys and within 24 hours, they were feeling much better! Woohoo!

(Note: we were out of our Vit D, so it's omitted from this recipe. But we usually add it!)

Homemade Vitamin Water
10 Chewable Vitamin C
4 Defend & Resist
3 Tablespoons Performance
8oz water

Simply crush the vitamins into a powder with a mortar and pestle, then mix with your favorite flavor of Shaklee Performance and 8oz of water. It's so yummy and will keep you hydrated and get your body back on track!

Have you made your own homeopathic cold remedy? What works best for you?

What I'm Reading Wednesday

Is it already Wednesday?? My goodness, the holiday weekend has really thrown me off schedule!

It's been a busy few days; but's always busy with two little guys! I have had a chance to sneak in a little blog reading though. Here are a few of my favorite posts over the past week!


Clean Lean Mommy Machine has a great post about prepping snacks for the kids. I'm going to try this with my boys. We really try to give them clean, healthy snacks like what's in her list, but there are times when I just grab a pack of crackers simply for convenience.

What Courtney Wore makes me sigh. In jealousy. Girlfriend has an amazing sense of style...I 'discovered' Courtney a few years back on trash reality tv: Most Eligible Dallas. (Yes, I have a tendency to watch those types of shows. You do too, and you know it!)  I've always loved her and I want her to come make over my closet. Please, Courtney? Help this suburban mama out! :)

The Marathon Mom somehow has time to be a wife, a mom to EIGHT BOYS, blog, workout, cook, clean, and still keep her sanity! She's always posting yummy looking recipes and I want to give this one a try. We love granola around here!

What are some of your favorite blogs? I'm always looking for new reading material!

Make sure you join my Healthy Life, Happy Life community on Facebook

We Have a Garden!

This is our second year to plant a small vegetable garden. Last year, we had some early success with zucchini, tomatoes, and eggplant. We tried carrots, but someone (me) got too anxious and kept pulling them up to 'check' on them so they never really grew. (Really, how old am I? Four??)

This year, we've tried the same veggies, plus some jalapenos, green beans, and bell peppers.

I love to garden. Something about digging around in the dirt and planting veggies or flowers is just calming to me. Our boys love it too!

Do you garden? What are your favorite things to plant?

Friday, May 24, 2013

All That Glitters | Fun with Art

Happy Friday! I hope you've had a great week! Here's a quick post on one of my son's favorite art activities!

My boy loves to do arts and crafts. He's really gotten into it lately...drawing, cutting, glueing, the whole bit. He also LOVES glitter.

And we all know how much moms love glitter too, right?

Not so much. It gets everywhere, it sticks to everything, it's a real pain in the rear.

But the joy it brings my boy when he sees his art supplies for the day contain bottles of glitter...well that's priceless!

Here's how we keep the glitter mess to a minimum while still having a great time!
  • TAKE IT OUTSIDE! Save yourself the annoyance of a glitter-fied kitchen and just take that mess right outside.
  • Use a cookie sheet to 'contain' the glitter. We put his paper right on the cookie sheet so when he goes to town sprinkling his glitter then shaking it off, it stays on the cookie sheet so we can use it again!



    What are some of your family's favorite arts and crafts activities?

    Have a wonderful weekend and don't forget to join my Facebook community and connect with me on Twitter!

    Wednesday, May 22, 2013

    What I'm Reading Wednesday

    I have a TON of favorite blogs in my Bloglovin' and Google Reader feed. I'm starting a new weekly (hopefully weekly!) series called, "What I'm Reading Wednesday." It's just going to be a list of my favorite blog posts from the past week!


    Sole Searching: She inspires me. She's a homeschooling mom to 5 (?) boys and lives out in rural Kansas. How she has time to wife, parent, run, blog, clean, and keep her sanity is beyond me. She's got a great sense of humor and I love all her posts! Practical & spiritual motivators for life-long fitness is a great post for those of us (me) who need some spiritual motivation to get off my tush!

    Conscientious Confusion: I know Jenny personally. We met way back Dallas, at a home group for our church. Jenny and her family are neat-o! She's a green loving mommy, but what I really love about her blog is that she's not an alarmist, she doesn't post things to freak you out. Here's one that I can relate to. In fact, I was going to post something about this very topic, but she did it for me! When eating clean is hard

    Crunchy Urban Mom: Ha! Another Jennie that I know personally! This Jennie is an old college roommate and she just started blogging. I love her post about making diaper covers out of pillowcases!

    Monday's Nugget: I 'met' Lana via a blogging community. She has some great recipes, and some hilarious stories about the mommyhood. I do so appreciate her latest post: OK. How can I help?

    Tuesday, May 21, 2013

    Close to Home

    The devastating tornado that ripped through Moore, Oklahoma yesterday is near and dear to my heart. I grew up in Norman, OK (about 10 miles south of Moore) and my entire family still lives up there. I was a junior in college when the May 3, 1999 tornado came through Moore on almost the same path as yesterday. I still remember where I was that day...luckily, out of harms way.

    Oklahoma is my home...I love it and the events from yesterday have left me in tears. I'm actually glad we have two smalls boys at home so we can't turn on the tv and watch the coverage. We're protecting their eyes and ears while we can.

    So many of us feel useless in times like this, especially when we're out of state. What can we do? How can we help?

    There are many ways you can help!

    If you live in the OKC metro area, here's a list of places that need drop offs
    NOTE: Many places do NOT want clothing. They need diapers, formula, wipes, water.

    If you don't live in the area, you can donate here:
    Red Cross
    United Way
    Feed the Children
    Samaritan's Purse

    My brand partner has an amazing program called Shaklee Cares. You can donate money directly to the organization, log in to your Member Center and choose the Care Package you wish to donate, or contact me to order a Care Package that will be sent to the Oklahoma recovery efforts. Prices for the packages range from $30 to $85.

    Here's are some of the care packages we have:
    Global Relief Package

    • 7 Shaklee 180 Meal Bars
    • 10 Shaklee 180 Snack Bars
    • Vita-Lea Multivitamins
    • Shakleekids Incredivites

    Global Relief Germicide Pack

    • Two 32 oz bottles of Basic G
    • Two Basic G spray bottles
    First Responder Recovery Pack

    • Shaklee Physique Recovery Drink
    • Vita-Lea Multivitamins
    • Joint & Muscle Pain Cream

    Though I don't live in Oklahoma anymore, it will always be home. Thank you so much for rallying around the city of Moore and sending prayers their way!

    Thursday, May 16, 2013

    Easy Guacamole Recipe

    Hello, hello! How has your week been? We just got back from Caddo Lake out in east Texas for a long weekend getaway. It was lots of fun and our boys really enjoyed it!

    Today I wanted to share with you our super easy recipe for the best guacamole around! We eat avocados and guacamole several times a week. Avocados are so good for you and taste yummy too! We're pretty picky about our guacamole...we just don't like the way many restaurants add so much extras like onions, tomatoes, etc to it. We love to just taste the avocado.

    So here's our three (four including the avocado!) recipe for the best guacamole around!

    • One large ripe avocado
    • Fresh squeezed lemon juice Trust me, lemon is way better than lime!
    • Garlic salt to taste
    • Grey salt to taste Don't use ordinary table salt because it's too 'salty.' Grey salt has bigger granules and gives a much better salt taste without being overpowering.

    Mash and mix it all together in a serving dish and you're ready to go!

    Have you  joined my Facebook page yet? I'd love to get connected!

    Friday, May 10, 2013

    Keeping Mosquitoes at Bay | Using a Natural Solution

    Well, it's mosquito season around these parts! Yuck! It's funny how we're in such a drought down here, but the mosquitoes still seem to find a way to invade us every spring and summer!

    For many years, we used topical bug spray, citronella burning candles or tiki torches to keep the mosquitoes away while we were outside. We never really liked the smell of any of it, plus all the darn warning labels that are on those products really concerned us.


    Ugh, no thanks!

    And once we had kids, we knew we had to find a safer alternative to keep bugs away. After doing A LOT of research, we decided that using essential oils was the best route for us. They WORK, they're SAFE, and they're not very expensive. 

    Plus, essential oils smell good! Winning!

    So here's how my family keeps those pesky bugs away! (There are quite a few 'recipes' for making your own bug repellant, but I had these oils on hand and they worked, so we haven't tried anything else!)

    We just dab some peppermint and lavender essential oils on the insides of our wrists, behind our ears, and on our ankles. 

    Just a drop of each oil in each area is all you need. 

    We've not been attacked yet this season! 

    Do you use natural alternatives for bug repellants? What is your favorite way to keep the bugs away?

    Thanks for coming by! I'd love for you to join my community on Facebook!

    Wednesday, May 8, 2013

    New Jewelry Items!

    Have you had a chance to check out the latest items available on my Oh, Gracious! page? I've had a lot of customers purchase these items for teacher gifts! Can you believe the school year is almost over already?? Oh my, I have to get teacher gifts too!

    If you haven't already, join Oh, Gracious! on Facebook!

    Here's a few things that are still available!

    Mint filigree earrings $12

    Lightweight infinity scarf $12

    White ombre necklace; includes earrings $25

    Side cross bracelet $14

    Turquoise ombre necklace; includes earrings $25

    Monday, May 6, 2013

    Green Your Life | Easy Ways to Do It!

    Did you have a great weekend? We sure did!

    Earth Day was in April, but I figure, why not try to be Earth conscious all year long? It's our only home and it's important to take care of it!

    When I talk about going green, some people have responded to me with anxiety. I know where they're coming from! When you see a list of all the things you could/should/would do, it can be totally overwhelming! We are not a perfectly green family...far from it. But, we've taken a lot of steps to try to be greener and help keep our planet healthy. We have oodles of room to improve, but small steps are better than no steps!

    Today, I wanted to share with you our list of things we do as a family to be green!

    Replace toxic cleaners. When we got serious about this, we started by replacing all of our home cleaners (all purpose, toilet bowl cleaners, glass cleaners, etc) with natural, non-toxic, all-purpose cleaner. As you know, we use Shaklee's Basic H as our go to for cleaning just about everything in our home! Really!

    This one product can:
    • Be the replacement for ALL of your toxic household cleaners
    • Can clean everything and the kitchen sink
    • Eliminate amonnia-based window cleaners
    • Remove the impossible...think crayons, gum, markers
    • Cuts grease with ease
    • Does odd jobs
    • Is a perfect camping companion
    • Saves money
    • Is easy on the planet
    • And puts less in landfills!

    Clean up your laundry with a natural non-toxic detergent. By using a non-toxic detergent and fabric softener, I don't have to worry about my family going to sleep on sheets that have leftover perfumes and who-knows-what in them from being 'cleaned!' I've never been much of a perfume fan anyway, so this detergent is perfect for us!

    Read your beauty product labels. After we got the cleaning and laundry products squared away, I moved on to our bathroom and started reading the labels on the kids soaps and shampoos. Once again, I was sold by the labels saying 'natural' on them. Upon closer look, I found out that Johnson & Johnson owns Aveeno. No bueno for this momma. So I got their soaps and shampoos replaced and started on ours.

    We've been pleased with Burt's Bees products and the Shaklee Enfuselle Line! I use Burt's Bees Radiance for my facial cleanser and daily moisturizer and Shaklee Enfuselle for my night cream. We both use Tom's deodorants.

    Use cloth dish rags and cloth napkins.  We started using cloth dish rags and cloth napkins about five years ago and haven't looked back. Honestly, I started using them because I was sick of spending so much money on paper towels...I wasn't even concerned about the environment. I have a basket under the kitchen sink with a giant stack of dish rags. Luckily, our laundry room is just off the kitchen so it's super easy for me to toss the dirty towels right into the laundry basket! We still use paper towels but not near as much as we could.

    Eliminate plastic containers and use glass. We're working on this. We have two young boys and concrete and tile floors through out the house. We're still a mostly plastic storage family, so it's a work in progress.

    Less bottled water. We don't buy bottled water. We have filtered water and tons of reusable water bottles that we use every single day. Just as with the paper towel thing, I was too cheap to keep buying bottled water and wanted to save money. So I'm doing that, plus helping to keep waste down. There are a ton of great water bottle options out there! We have bunch of these Contigo bottles. I know they're plastic, but I don't like to drink water out of stainless steel.

    Reusable grocery bags. I use these about 90% of the time when shopping. I've noticed the grocery clerks are able to pack a lot more in them than the plastic bags, and they're so much easier to carry, especially when you've got a toddler in your arms! Just be sure to wash your bags regularly because they can get some funky germs in them! See how I do it here.

    Recycle! This probably goes without saying. If you live in an area that has a recycling program, it's really very easy to do it and get in the recycle habit! Pretty much anything you use can be recycled. Just take a look at your areas requirements! We have a special recycle bucket in our laundry room where all our paper, junk mail, boxes, glass bottles, and any other recyclable go. About 2-3 times per week, I dump it in our outside bin.

    And that, my friends, is how we're working towards being a greener family! I know we can do better, but we're taking small steps all the time to lead a greener, cleaner life!

    What things does your family do to be green?

    Have you joined my Facebook and Twitter community yet? I'd love to connect with you!

    Sunday, May 5, 2013

    Oh, Gracious! | I'm Having a Giveaway!

    Ya'll, I'm feeling so blessed at all the love I've received from everyone lately. My family, friends, and even my neighbors have really embraced my two work-at-home businesses and for that, I'm so thankful! Sometimes I feel like I've taken on too much, but I get such a thrill out of helping people achieve great health naturally and also helping people find fun, trendy jewelry at affordable prices.

    I know...the two are so different! But, they're what I love to do and I'm thrilled to have the opportunity to be able to do what I love!

    Enough gushing.

    I'm hosting a giveaway on my Oh, Gracious! Facebook page! My goal is to get to 1000 fans by the end of the month. Once I get lucky winner who participates in the contest gets a $20 credit for any item we have available! Hooray!

    Here are the details! Like it, Share it, and Comment on it to enter! Thank you and good luck!

    Oh, Gracious! Facebook page

    Saturday, May 4, 2013

    Shaklee 180 | Summer Shape- Up Promotion!

    Here it is friends! The exciting new 180 promotion from my brand partner, Shaklee! Oh, I am so, so excited about this!!

    Here's my personal testimony of Shaklee 180!
    I've been using the Shaklee 180 program for about 9 months. I was having trouble getting my 2nd baby weight off; mostly because I wasn't eating right. I was running around like a crazy person and skipping meals...the worst thing you can do when trying to lose weight, right?

    So my mentor and friend suggested I give the 180 Smoothees a try as a healthy meal replacement along with a daily dose of the Vitalizer strip. I was skeptical at first because I didn't think I'd feel 'full' enough. But I agreed to try them for one week. I was pleasantly surprised at 1) how YUMMY they taste and 2) how I didn't get hungry between meals! Win! Plus, I had more energy thanks to Vitalizer...I was finally getting all the nutrition I needed to keep up with two small boys.

    You can read all about my accidental Vitalizer test here.

    As I continued using the Lean & Healthy Kit, along with going to Zumba and doing some light weight training several times per week, I started shedding those last few baby pounds FAST! I credit it all to getting the right nutrients and meal replacements from the Shaklee Lean & Healthy Kit!

    I even got my husband on it! He drinks a Strawberry Smoothee every morning for breakfast...and he tells me time and again how he's always satisfied til lunch!

    Do you want to get $100 in FREE Shaklee products while you're losing weight??

    Summer is less than 60 days away! Now is the time to get your 180 started!

    Here's how to do it!

    New customers join Shaklee with one of the following:

    What do you get with one of these kits?

    • FREE Shaklee membership! Our membership gives you up to 25% off retail of every product! Not only can you lose weight, you can get wonderful vitamins, beauty products, children's products, and non-toxic home cleaners!
    • When you join on AutoShip, and keep your 180 Kit on AutoShip for a total of three months, you qualify for: FREE SHIPPING!
    • When completing your 90-day Turnaround, you will receive $100 to spend on Shaklee products!

    What?? Oh, yes!

    And as always, when 3 friends join you on your 180, your next month's kit is FREE!

    That's a whole lot of free things, huh?!

    Now, if that's not incentive enough to get yourself ready for summer, then what is? Friends, I have testimony after testimony of my wonderful customers and business partners with success stories from using Shaklee 180. I want YOU to be my next success story!

    Contact me TODAY and I'll help you start your Turnaround!

    Friday, May 3, 2013

    Getting Organized | A Cleaning Schedule

    We've had such a mild spring here in north Texas, that it really inspired me to get our home clean and in order! Usually we go from cold to blazing hot in a matter of weeks, so this is a beautiful change of pace! I'm starting a new series about getting our home more organized! I would LOVE for you to leave me some of you own tips and tricks to keeping your home running smoothly, too!

    As a work at home mom of two young boys,  I am constantly trying to keep our home clean. If you're a parent, then you know this is many times an exercise in futility!

    I thought I'd share with you how and what my husband and I do on a daily, weekly, and as needed basis to keep our house clean. Having these lists printed out has helped me a lot in the area of trying to stay organized and keep a tidy home!

    Here's my Daily Cleaning Schedule. I do this everyday...sometimes multiple times a day! :)

    Here are our weekly chores:

    And here's what we do on an as needed basis!

    Next week, I'll be back to show you what natural, non-toxic product I use to keep our home clean!

    Do you have a cleaning schedule? Please link up below!

    Thursday, May 2, 2013

    Oh, Hello There!

    Hi there! It's me...your long lost blogger! I tell ya, for some reason over the past month I just haven't been feeling the blog bug. We were out of town for a week, we had family in town for a week, and some of us got the stomach virus (ahem, yours truly...the one who pumps her men full of probiotics but forgets to take them herself! Lesson learned!)

    On top of that, both my brand partner business with Shaklee AND my own jewelry and accessories store have both taken off in a big way! So THANK YOU to everyone who continues to support this work at home mommy! I SO APPRECIATE YOU!

    So it's a new month and new fun things are happening! I can't tell you the big news today, but I can tell you that starting tomorrow, I will be able to offer you an AMAZING deal with our Shaklee 180 line. Oh, I'm so excited about it!

    I know many of you are looking for that perfect weight loss or weight management program. I wholeheartedly believe that Shaklee 180 is the best out there. There are no silly gimmicks like wraps, magic green coffee beans, or drink juice only plans. This is the real deal.

    Shaklee 180 is all about eating real, healthy foods, having a meal replacement to ensure you're getting your daily nutrition, having healthy, attainable snacks, and of course....plenty of exercise! Our 180 Smoothees, powered with leucine, help you lose almost ALL the fat! check out this diagram!

    OK - so stay tuned to tomorrow when we make the big announcement!!