Sunday, May 25, 2014

The Challenge: Before and After

Back in January I posted about a weight loss challenge that I was participating in.

Well, it ended.

Six weeks ago.

I've been avoiding this post because I haven't really wanted to talk about the results.  Not because I failed, but because in my opinion, I actually did pretty well. I posted about the competition so I would have some sort of accountability, but now I just feel like this post is tooting my own horn...which is totally and completely not my intention.  I just didn't want to say I was doing it in January, and then not post the follow-up leaving everyone to assume that I just gave up.  Because even more than my dislike for self-horn-tooting, is my dislike for being known as a quitter.

So, here we go:

The point of the challenge was to take doTERRA's Slim and Sassy Oil blend five times per day, plus regular use of two doTERRA products.  I chose the Trim Shake and the Phytoestrogen.  The Trim shake was my post-workout shake and the phytoestrogen was taken daily to balance my hormones and {hopefully} help me to have less emotional/pms eating.

Diet and exercise were allowed, but not required.  I chose to continue daily exercise, and set a goal to become a better runner by the end of the challenge.

Here are my 3 month results:

(The befores are ridiculously embarrassing now...)

I lost a total of 27 lbs, and 26 inches off my body, and decreased my body fat by 19%.

Yeah, you're right...I SHOULD have won the grand prize of $1500 to buy a whole new wardrobe.  Thanks for agreeing with me!

(Alright, alright, maybe the guy who lost 66 lbs and the lady who lost 40-something lbs probably deserved it a little more than I did!!)

Either way - I'm not $1500 richer, but I am 27 lbs lighter and wearing a size that I haven't fit into since I was twelve.  I consider myself a winner, and am proud of my progress.

Monday, February 3, 2014

The Postpartum Potion

When I was younger my mom used to use essential oils and holy moly, did we think she was nutso.  We would all roll our eyes as she would drop eucalyptus into a steaming pot of water and make us breathe it in for our colds.  We called her "The Witchdoctor" and laughed at all of her magic potions.  Yes, she is laughing at us and flaunting her, "I told you so" methods.

Touché, Mom. Touché.

I generally don't refer to oils as potions, but this little concoction is nothing short of magical.  After I gave birth to our fifth child, Rob asked me to use oils for my postpartum recovery.  Now, I'm all for testing these things out - but I have to be honest...the thought of using oils after pushing out a baby had me in all sorts of a tissy.  I kept asking Rob, "Isn't it going to burn like crazy?!"  He assured me it wouldn't.

I was POSITIVE he was lying to me.

I mean, how on earth could that not hurt? Even the numbing spray they give you in the hospital has some burning before the numbing effect kicks in. So when birth-day came, and Seth was born, I was left with two tears.  There may have been some nasty looks and or mutterings as Rob handed me a little spray bottle before I used the restroom for the first time after delivery, but I tried it (mostly so I could come out screaming about the EXTRA pain he had put me through after just having given birth).

Not a single burn.  Not even a little burn-let.  And after that absoutely no pain.

I kid you not, I used that spray every time I used the bathroom in the hospital and for about two days after I got home, and nothing.  ZERO perineum pain for the entire recovery.  Not once did I even crack open the numbing pain that they give you in the hospital.  It was that magical.

It has taken me a while to put this one up mostly because of the nature of the story. But I decided that I'm not the first woman to give birth - nor the last - and if this helps someone else's recovery, then this blog's purpose is fulfilled.

Magical Postpartum Potion Directions:

Fill a 2 oz glass spray bottle 3/4 full with water  (I purchase mine HERE)
~remember that the oils will break down plastics, so it's safer to use glass

Add 20 drops Immortelle Blend,
 or 10 drops Lavender, 10 drops Frankincense and 5 drops Helichrysum (whatever you have on hand)

Shake well and spray.  

*This spray also works wonders on circumcision recovery, should you choose to go that route, but I'll get more into that in my next couple of posts.  Not circumcision (HELLO, controversy!) but more oils for newborn care.

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

The Challenge

Every year DōTERRA puts on a weight loss competition based around their Slim and Sassy line.  For those of you who don't know what Slim and Sassy is - here is a brief explanation straight from the company's website:

dōTERRA’s Slim & Sassy Metabolic Blend is a proprietary formula of 100% pure CPTG Certified Pure Therapeutic Grade® essential oils designed to help manage appetite between meals. Slim & Sassy includes a blend of grapefruit, lemon, peppermint, ginger, and cinnamon essential oils. Just add 8 drops to 16 oz. of water (regular size bottle of water) and drink between your healthy meals throughout the day to help manage hunger, calm your stomach, and lift your mood. The Slim & Sassy blend also makes a delicious and healthy flavored water for proper hydration during exercise or other activity. It has zero calories and is an excellent replacement for high-calorie beverages or for drinks that contain artificial sweeteners and colors.

For a more detailed explanation click HERE.  

Anywho - back to the competition.  A good friend of ours has lost 51 lbs since introducing Slim and Sassy into her life, and I have been obviously intrigued.   Here is her story: (I cropped the picture to help keep the paparazzi off her tail)

This morning I got into my SMALLEST pair of jeans! I've been holding on to them for YEARS just for this day! It's the first time I feel like I could actually wear them outside of my house! Woo hoo! Slim&Sassy is my friend! 

Very impressive, indeed.  My sister in law had also mentioned weight loss when adding Slim and Sassy to her regular routine, so I decided to jump on board.  I entered the competition that began January 1st, and ends mid April.  I'm taking 5 drops of Slim and Sassy 5 times daily, and drinking the Vanilla Trim shake after each workout.  It's my favorite meal of the joke - here's my recipe of choice:

8 oz light vanilla soy or almond milk (some days I do half milk half water)
1 scoop vanilla Trim Shake
2 TBS PB2 (this stuff is heavenly)
1/2 banana
1 cup crushed ice 

Blend for 30 seconds in your super-duper high powered blender of choice

It has between 150-200 calories (deepening on milk amounts) and fills me up until lunch.

I can proudly report that as of today (three weeks in) I have lost 8 lbs.  But the reason I am posting this on here is so that I can post my full and final results in April.  A couple of months ago I hit my pre-baby weight, but I have since plateaued leaving me 15-20 lbs heavier than I really REALLY want to be, so I'm hoping this competition will get me down to the weight that has been my goal for, well, I guess I can say my whole life!  Fingers crossed - wish me luck! 

Questions about Slim and Sassy or other oils?  Email me by clicking the link on the right.  

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Cinnamon and Honey Cleanse

 Have you seen all that stuff floating around the internet about the cinnamon and honey cleanse?  I am fairly new to this game, and honestly having a bit of a hard time believing some of the things I have read ( I read somewhere that it can cure hearing loss...?) but I do know that organic honey and cinnamon both have extremely powerful healing qualities - so I guess it is safe to assume that when combined they become even more potent.

Here's what I know about organic honey:

Honey is a natural source of energy for your body.  When taken before a workout, it will help sustain energy levels and keep blood sugar stable. Taken after a workout it will help balance sugar levels.  Adding a bit to your water bottle will help combat daily fatigue.

Honey has been credited relieving sore throats, coughs, stomach ulcers, arthritis and bladder infections. Topically it is great for burns and a natural (but sticky) moisturizer.

Here's what cinnamon oil has to offer:

Cinnamon is a natural antibiotic.  In essential oil terms, it rivals Black Pepper and Oregano in strength.  It is also a natural antiviral - which means it can help in those situations where your doc says, "It's just viral - nothing to do but wait it out.."  (Don't you HATE that answer?)  Cinnamon is extremely effective in balancing blood sugar.  It speeds up your metabolism and has been linked to weight loss in many studies.  Cinnamon oil also works as a great disinfectant around your house  - it can be used to kill germs in the air with a diffuser, or in a diluted spray bottle as a natural household cleaner.

NOW!  On to the real reason you're here....THE CLEANSE RECIPE! This cleanse is meant for weight-loss, balancing blood sugar levels, and overall digestive health. It's a great way to jump start your metabolism in the morning, and to conquer those late-night sugar cravings.

8 oz of hot water
1-2 drops of dōTERRA** Cinnamon Bark Essential Oil
1/2 tsp raw, organic honey
Stir well and enjoy twice a day on an empty stomach.  

If this is too watered down for your taste, simply add more honey.

(I should probably warn you that this is one of the best smelling drinks....EVER.  Sometimes I forget to actually drink it, and find myself smiling over my still-full cup.)

** DoTERRA essential oils are food grade oils and safe for internal consumption.  

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Antispasmodic - a REAL word

People often assume that just because we essential oil users - we never get sick.  Not true.  My kids are still exposed to the same germ-pool at school, church, and playing with neighborhood friends.  We have been using preventative oils around here - which has definitely made it a healthier winter - but we have still had our fair share of sickness.  We are just able to manage our sickness at home, and very rarely need professional intervention.  It is quite empowering, actually.

Which is why today I feel the need to share my love of cypress.  It's another one of those overlooked oils, but comes in handy in SO MANY situations.  In my opinion, it's a must have in your oils cabinet.

Cypress oil is ANTISPASMODIC.  Not a word I throw around often - but true.  It means that it stops the cycle of spasms.  I don't mean like when your kid starts acting like a spaz, (if anyone has anything to report on that - feel free to share)  but when your body gets stuck repeating the same action over and over even if it's involuntary.

Two of my absolute favorite uses for Cypress are coughing and vomiting.  Often with a bad cold - especially at night - the tickle in your chest/throat causes you to continue coughing even if there's no productivity from the cough (aka phlegm).  Apply cypress to the bottoms of your feet (I always add Breathe to the mix for extra oomph) and sleep wearing socks.  WORKS. EVERY. TIME.  There will be a few trail-off coughs, then silence.

Vomiting is actually important if there is something that your body is rejecting, but if you're like my husband it doesn't end there.  He can throw up for hours and hours at a time, and always ends up in the hospital vomiting orange bile.  His body just can't seem to stop the spasm of the dry heaves on its own. Cypress oil applied to the stomach area will help break the cycle and allow him to stop dry heaving.  I try not to apply cypress until I feel most of what's being rejected is out of the body.

Other documented uses for Cypress include:
Carpal Tunnel
Varicose Veins

Tuesday, October 9, 2012


I get asked a lot what I use purify oil for - and I admit that for a long time I actually didn't use it at all.  I just didn't really understand what it was for, and the name is just a bit too vague for me!  But after hearing the following story I did some research and wasn't surprised to hear that Purify oil was the go to for this undesirable situation:

A good friend of mine shared a story with me recently about spending the weekend away with her extended family in a super posh cabin.  She and her husband lucked out and were given the master suite for the weekend.  When she woke up the next morning she saw blood smears all over the sheets.  BED BUGS!

They packed up - cleaned everything out, etc - and thought they had escaped basically unharmed.  Not quite so - apparently it takes a couple of weeks for the bites to show up.  My poor friend was covered with itchy little red bumps.

I have stayed in some pretty classless hotels where I have examined the sheets to the best of my ability hoping not to find any little critters - but it just goes to show that you never can tell where those little buggers are going to show up.

That's why I'll start carrying a little spritzer bottle of purify oil with me from now on when I travel.  Not only do bed bugs get on you when you sleep, but they then follow you home in your luggage, etc.  WHAT A MESS.

We also used purify to clear up pink eye in sixteen hours last time it hit our house.  Just be sure to cover the pink eye with a cold wet cloth after applying purify oil around (not in) the eye - it burns...but for me it was totally worth the three mins of burning feeling. Purify generally is not a hot oil - but the skin around the eye is very raw when you have pink eye.

Other purify uses include:
  • Diffuse in living areas and office to kill pathogens.
  • Add a drop to your laundry or dishwasher to freshen and purify clothes and dishes
  • Use as a room deodorizer and countertop sanitizer
  • Diffuse to strengthen the immune system
  • Use topically for people who work in or have spent time in hospitals or around people that are ill
  • Apply topically at the onset of blemishes and cold sores
  • Spritz in shoes to deodorize and combat odors
  • Apply to a bee or wasp sting or insect bite for fast, soothing relief
(I am the cold sore QUEEN, and I can promise that the use of this at the onset, and repeatedly throughout it will not only keep your cold sore almost invisible - but it will also cut the time in half).

And there you have it - Purify.  In a nutshell, I guess you can say it gets rid of gross stuff!

Friday, July 27, 2012

Sassy Water

Have you ever heard of Sassy Water?  Apparently it's all the rage in the dieting world.  Especially for those of you...okay, us, who hate water.  Here's a recipe I found on Pinterest.

I'm going to whip it up right after this - and I'll fill you in on the results next blog.

Sassy Water Mix
3 drops lemon essential oil
2 drop grapefruit essential oil
1 drop ginger essential oil
1 drop peppermint essential oil
1 drop cinnamon essential oil
Place drops of each essential oil into a gallon of cold water.  
Shake well to mix the flavors together.

(Side note - you want to make sure you don't use a plastic jug - the lemon will break down the toxins in the plastic, and put holes in the jug...making your fridge a sassy mess.  Use glass if possible) 

I know that cinnamon, ginger, and grapefruit are all essential oils that aid in digestion and weight loss - so having these in Sassy Water makes perfect sense.  But no matter what, anything that helps me to want to drink more water is helpful.  It is JUST SO BLAH on its own!

Drink up!