Happier When I’m Healthy

…finding the right balance and creating a wellness lifestyle

We all go through many ups and downs in life. When we are on top, we fall and when we find ourselves at the bottom, we have to muster up the strength to crawl back upwards again. We don’t always have things go our way and – alternatively – we unexpectedly find good things sometimes fall into our laps. Whenever we think we have it all figured out – life throws us a curveball and all we can do is breathe and take things one day at a time. 

All that we can do, all that we can control is our ability to make sure that we are taking good enough care of ourselves so that we are healthy and able to celebrate the good moments and strong enough to handle the hard ones. Being our best, healthiest selves is what gives us the best chance at reaching our potentials and making the most out of our lives.  

I know that I have had my fair share of challenges, stressful situations, loss and lessons along the way and, while I am not always proud of how I have handled all of life’s trials, I am learning how to better cope with life on lifes terms. I am better learning how to take proper care of myself so that I can be a stable, safe and sound mother, wife, friend and person. I am better learning how to make health and wellness a top priority to me, and I would love to share some of what I have learned with you…. 

Something important I have recently learned in my own healing journey, is that when I truly do take care of myself from the inside out – when I make my own physical, mental, emotional and spiritual health a priority,  I am happier. I am more capable. I am more clear, confident and conscise. I am creative, inspired, open and able to be an active participant in my life and steer myself in a positive direction. I know that health, for me, truly equals happiness. 

And, while some of you reading this might think – well, DUH ….. the discovery of the connection between my health and my happiness truly was a profound thing for me.  I haven’t ever really considered before the importance of my own health in the happiness I experience in life. 

For someone who often posts and writes about the importance of mental health and practicing self care, you might be suprised to know this, but it truly was amazing for me when I began to truly see how taking care of my physical well being contributed immensley to the overarching level of happiness in my life. 

One of the biggest contributors to my mental, physical, emotional and spiritual health is the absence of alcohol in my life. This is coming from someone who has had a tumultous relationship with alcohol that ended in an addiction that required a lot of surrendering, of asking for help, of relying on the support of my family and close friends (thank you, you know who you are) and many forms of treatment for recovering from. I can not explain the ways in which removing this toxin from my life has improved every single facet of my life. I know that, truly, every good thing in my life remains here on the basis that I stay away from drinking. 

However, it is not sobriety alone that creates an environment of health for me to flourish in. Yes, having a body free of alcohol is a strong base for health and wellbeing, yet it is not the only contributing factor. I find health and wellbeing by balancing many factors of my life from nutrition to mindset, physical activity to sleep habits, limiting my exposure to social media, practicing mindfulness, taking time to connect spiritually, participating in one-on-one and group therapy, having a gratitude practice, engaging in joyful activities, being present with my children and taking time to reflect and continually examine areas of my life that I can improve upon. 

Health is a multifaceted compenent in all of our lives and we don’t achieve it in the same ways. We all are responsible for finding ways we enjoy to eat healthy, to make a schedules that work, to balance work/home responsibilites, to find a connection to spirit that we understand and to choose to do the things that fill our hearts with joy. No two pathways to health are the same, but I can guarantee that regardless of how you get there – your life is going to be happier the healthier you are. 

Whether it is using my Young Living essential oils to help create a mindset + headspace that decreases stress and increases feelings of peace is a big part of helping improve my mental wellness. Using oils to help me sleep helps start my days rested and prepared. Praying, meditating and focusing on gratitude in the morning and a yoga practice that serves both my body + mind helps get me mentally ready for the day. Taking Juice Plus supplements daily to flood my body system with the fruits, vegetables and berries it needs in order to operate at its optimum level fuels my physical body in the most amazing way.  I know that making these intentional choices on a daily basis not only improve the quality of my health but are also going to be contributing and important factors in helping me increase the overall level of happiness in my life. If I don’t work on my physical AND mental well being together, each one fails. 

Health is an overarching component in all of our lives and it is imperative that we are caring for all of the parts of our selves. 

Gabrielle Bernstein, one of my most favourite authors and lifestyle gurus, says that we should “work our happiness like it’s a full time job” and I know that choosing to prioritize my health – and therefore my happiness – makes my ‘job’ a whole lot easier. My job, I know,  is to be the best version of myself that I can – and yours is too. By honing in on the practices that optimize the level of physical health in our bodies, we give our brains the best chance possible to cultivate positive mindsets that help move us from states of stress + fear to ones of faith, love + positivity.  When we are in this state, we are calm. Peaceful. Accepting. And, when we can achieve this, we begin to attract more of the same to our lives … and the process can literally be life-changing. 

Finding what works for us, finding our optimal health through practices that serve our mental, physical, emotional and spiritual selves takes time. This is not a quick-fix solution to our lives. This is a process that takes time, one that evolves as we learn and grow. We find what works through trial and error, experimentation, the advice from those we trust and from following our own intution. 

If you haven’t yet begun your own wellness journey or taken time to examine how you are either helping or hurting your level of health – I highly suggest you do. Whether you start small or decide to do an entire lifestyle overhaul – any movement towards a healthier you is going to help lead you to a happier you, too. You will benefit from it. Your relationships will benefit from it. Your outlook in life will improve and so will every aspect of your life. While I am no health professional, expert or even someone who has all the answers – I can tell you this : prioritizing your own health and happiness is the best gift you can give yourself and the people you love. 

Living an authentically healthy – and happy – life, after all, is a beautiful thing. 

Living My Authentic Self

….finding the strength to choose my own path, regardless of what is expected of me

“Be your own kind of beautiful”

“March to the beat of your own drum”

“Dance like nobody is watching”

These lines; these cute, inspirational and encouraging little quotes are probably not unfamiliar to you. We see the likeliness of them on posters, Pinterest boards, social media posts, t-shirts, stickers and graphics. They’re written to celebrate our own individuality and uniqueness; to empower the reader to embrace his or her own beauty and character. 

I know that I personally have written some similar things on Instagram and Facebook posts, encouraging my readers to do the same – to be bold and blaze their own trail in life. Posting things like this sure makes it seem as though this is a practice I embody and employ myself. It makes it seem as though I am a strong trailblazer myself, creating my own path in life and honouring my own authentic self. 

However, in all reality, during most of the 33 years of my life, I can clearly see how I have looked to outside sources to guide, influence, mold and shape a LOT of who I am. 

As I am currently in a season of healing and growth, I have begun to really examine a lot of my thought and behaviour patters; and something  I am noticing is how many times in my life and in how many areas outside sources have been major influences on me and my choices and decisions.

For someone who appears outwardly confident, I definitely have a lot of insecurities and I find that I have shaped myself to be accepted by others. Going over the phases of my life in my head, I can clearly see where I have changed parts of who I am in order to fit in. I can see choices that I made in hopes that I would assimilate myself easier into a crowd. It’s obvious where I was trying to hard to reach a standard, meet an expectation or conform to a mold that just wasn’t me.

Whether it was a group of friends I was trying to fit in with, a parent or influential grown up I was trying to please, a role I was trying to fill or a comparison I was making to a stranger on social media – I realize in how many ways, both big and small, I have tried to change myself. And, while no man is an island, in thoughts, styles or ideas and I know we all live with outside influences, I realize now it is time to relinquish the control that these outside sources have on me. 

Over time, over the many years of feeling these outside influences, of trying to fit in, wanting to be accepted and portraying myself as someone I am not – I found myself tired. Tired and lost. 

My core, my heart, the innermost part of myself is truly where my authentic self lives. She is still in there. She is still who I really am. 

My mission now, is to shed the layers of characters I’ve piled on that aren’t really genuine. To honour who I am and to know that I have always been enough – just as I am. I am not perfect and I know I will sometimes stumble and fail, but as long as I pick myself up and look at who I really am and what I really want, I will move forward knowing I am finally on the right path – my own. 

Regardless of the crowd, of the opinions of others, of the expectations from outside sources, I aim to live my life with intention and authenticity – staying true to who I am. I have little eyes watching me and I want to model srength, bravery and integrity for her to grow up always being true to herself, too. 

Living authentically, after all, is a beautiful thing.  

Grow. Spring 2020 

Now that the days are warm, the sun is out, things are re-opening and life seems like it is slowly returning to ‘normal’, I am feeling reflective on the spring season we just experienced that was unlike any other we have ever had.

For me, it involved a LOT of home time. Family time. Days spent with my husband and children. Days spent learning to teach second grade on line. Cozy days. Days that we, as family, kind of needed.

This last year was one of trial, struggle, growth and change for me. Having this time at home was wonderful for Chris and the kids and I. Our family bonded and connected in ways we haven’t for a long while. We also enjoyed being creative together and putting a lot of time, energy and love into projects in and around our home.

In a lot of ways, this spring was a time of growth for us.

Metaphorically – spring is always the time for growth and for re-birth. For things to begin to bud, blossom and come into bloom.

However, now that we are in the summer season, there are some things from the spring that I want to carry on with me. I want to continue to grow – I want to keep the experience of continually growing, learning and making our home a beautiful and creative place to cultivate love, wonder and our children’s childhood in.

I want to garden, to learn more about how different plants, flowers and vegetables grow. I want to stain our woodworking projects, to build, to paint and to let the kids help – even on the messy projects.

I want to relax more. Enjoy more. Put my phone down more often and spend less time on a screen. I want to remember to USE my gratitude journal, not as a ‘have to’ but a ‘want to’ part of everyday – both to write in and reflect on the blessings I have in my life.

I want to read new books, to write my story, to learn about the lives of others. To connect more with the people I have in my life. To listen more and talk less. To make others around me feel valued and loved – because they are.

I want to continue to meditate, pray, do yoga and use my oils. To connect with myself more – to continue to explore and follow my own path and journey in life and to learn about my purpose here and to live up to my potential.

And to be present – so that I don’t miss the beautiful days I am given. To see the beauty in everyday – to fully embrace this life that I am lucky enough to be given.

I know that, in all situations, there is a purpose and a reason for why things happen. Making peace with our past allows us to BE in the present and to have faith in a beautiful future….

….and that, is a beautiful thing.

Life is Good

….we just need to remember that, sometimes

A few days ago, I was discussing the recent events and the current state of the world with a coworker as we were packing up my classroom, bagging up the students’ belongings and tagging their schoolwork for parents to pick up and we were realizing that we truly weren’t going to have a regular summer goodbye with the students. It was just another ‘thing’ that has changed without our consent and another adjustment that we all are making, learning how to deal as we go. That seems to be how most of this spring went – dealing with changes as they came. 

During our discussion, she was asking me how I found teaching online with two small children at home and if it was overwhelming. The answer of course is YES – our world was turned upside down in a very short amount of time and we had to adjust to very unnatural way of living. It has been overwhelming. There have been a lot of uncertainties. There have been a lot of stressful days. I think that would probably be true for everyone. 

However, when I was telling her how the last few months went and howmuch we enjoyed the bonus family time we had been given, the time and detail we were able to put into house projects, the way it felt like we were able to just be home with time slowed down she commented “it’s good you could find the good”.

And you know what? That way of thinking, that mindset, the ‘finding the good’- it’s what gets us through even the darkest times in life. Find the good. BE the good. See the good. Feel the good. 

So often we get caught up in the stress and busyness of life that we forget how good life is supposed to actually be. How good our bodies are designed to feel. How happy we are meant to be. How great the world is and how lucky we are to be where we are. 

It remindewd me – slow down. Slow down even more. There isn’t any rush, there rarely ever is – it is US that puts unrealistic expectations and timelines and pressures on ourselves in most cases. It reminded me –  find the good. Look around and genuinely see the blessings that are in my life. See the silver lining in situations where there doesn’t appear to be one. Take care of yourself and do the things that make yourself happy. Whatever they are. 

Yes, we are living in less than ideal times, the world is a madhouse most days – but, no matter what life or this world throws at you, it’s how you interpret it that dictates how you will experience things. Your mindset. Your choice. Your ability to see, feel and BE the good in the world.

And, I think that remembering that – knowing we have that choice – is a beautiful thing. 

Telling a Story….

…everyday we are adding a page to the story of our lives

I was chatting with a girlfriend the other day about life’s current ups and downs, about what was going on in our personal lives and some difficulties she was facing. She mentioned to me “well you talk about wellness all the time, what do you know about this [topic]?” and her comment caught me off guard. It was just a simple comment but it made me stop and think. 
What we do, what we say, what we post and consume and give our energy and attention to – matters. People are always listening, watching and observing even when we don’t think they are. Every part of our day, the steps we take and the choices we make are telling our story. We are literally ARE the authors of our own life. 

Which also made me stop and ask myself – am I living the life I want? Am I writing a legacy I can be proud of? Some days I am. Some days I could do better. There are days from my past that I certainly wish I could remove from my story. I am willing to venture a guess that we all have some days like that. 

However, a line from a song I love by the GooGoo Dolls reminds us to  “keep [our} memories, but don’t live the past” – meaning, we can’t change what has happened and we don’t have to live there anymore. We have a new opportunity, every day, to decide if we want to continue writing the story we have begun, or if we want to edit and change what we don’t want to continue – giving ourselves the opportunity to grow into our potential. We don’t have to live outlandishly or strive for attention in order to be important, noteworthy or remembered. 

Being kind, finding peace, seeing beauty and sharing love is what I would like my story to include. I want it to incorporate finding different ways to keep my body healthy so that my children can have their mommy around and active as long as possible. I want my story to be one of a teacher whose students learned to love learning and asking questions about the word around them, I want to to be a writer who left her heart in the words she wrote, I want to explore and enjoy the purpose, abundance and passion I have found through sharing Young Living + helping others learn how oils can change their lives.  I also  want to be the friend who is there for others when they are going through the dark times in their own lives – just like the friends I have and the community around me who watered my roots when they were buried deep and there was no blooming happening. 

We don’t have to have the plot of our story written or planned, nothing ever happens the exact way we want it to anyways. Life is always going to through us curveballs and our journey will lead us down paths we could never expect or predict. But, even knowing the theme – the overarching idea of our story – will help guide us in living a life that helps us tell the story and spread the message we want. We don’t even have to have that all figured out yet, but I do encourage you to look for the things that make you feel light. That make your heart happy. That give you a sense of purpose and pride and joy. 

Follow those things. Do small things everyday that add up and that you can string together to tell the story – whatever your story is – of who you are. 

….& that, is a beautiful thing. #lifedonebeautifully

The Beauty of Coming Home 

…the path to healing begins with a single step

I recently read a poem by April Green and it profoundly resonated with me and I want to share it with you. It so encompassed the emotions I have experienced in my healing journey and in my recovery. 

I have been learning, in therapy and through my counselling, that the journey to healing is all about coming home. Your heart home. To your soul self. To the place where connection stems from.  Healing is a life long process that we never truly complete, but rather learn from in every layer we uncover. 

I have begun to understand that the way out – the way out of our pain, out of our struggle, out of the situations we create in life – is in. We can’t go around or avoid doing the work necessary for healing and change. We have to face it. We have to look inwards. That’s how you get out of your pain. The way out of your struggle. The way out of the current situation or expereince – it is done by going in. 

We have to be brave enough to face our pain, our trauma. To look it straight in the eye. To sit with it. Breathe through it. Forgive it, and forgive ourselves for who we were. 

When we begin to allow ourselves to explore where and why we are hurt, we soften. We begin the process of healing. To be vulnerable enough to admit that there actually is hurt –  that we are expereincing sadness, dealing with rejection, living with feelings of unworthiness, and pain is brave. So often we feel the need to put forth a bravado that hides the greif. That serves as a protection for the weakness we think lives inside our pain.  However, that is where we are wrong – because, in being brave enough to journey inwards, we are actually  taking the first step in letting true healing and growth take place. 
If this is you – I am proud of you. Of being willing and open to let yourself heal. Of trusting that there is goodness that awaits you. Of releasing your pain, your fears and your hurt. Of starting the journey inwards and home, so that you may continue forwards in hope, healing and faith of a beautiful future. I am proud of you for taking the first step in the journey home – it is not easy, but it is a beautiful thing. 

30 Ways to Use Essential Oils In Your Day 

…using Young Living oils to infuse your overall wellness through the course of each day!

I recently taught an online class called 30 Ways to Use Essential Oils in Your Day and it was such a hit, I decided I would make the information easily accessible and share it here!
If you’re not oiling yet, you should be. Seriously. 

If you are ready to start – I would love to help you! 

You can join our community and get oiling right away just by clicking here.

Here are 30 Super easy + simple ways that you can use oils in your day! 

1. Rise and Shine

Your bed is a warm oasis, but when you peak open your eyes you can see the sun streaming through your windows. Push back your sheets’ cozy embrace and get your day started on an energizing foot by diffusing a blend from our list of the Best Morning Diffuser Blends to Start the Day! 
My personal favourite blend to wake up to is the Happy Essential Oil Blend of Bergamot, Spearmint + Tangerine. A bonus tip: fill your Desert Mist diffuser the night before so you can get your oils pumping first thing in the AM!

    
   2. Get Hydrated

Beginning your day with a glass of lemon water on an empty stomach not only helps balance your pH level, but provides a wide array of health benefits such as boosting your immune system, helping decrease inflammation, supporting your respiratory function, and invigorates the body + mind so you are ready to great your day with optimal zest and energy! Just remember, since essential oils are so powerful, if you are using a plastic container they can leach harmful toxins from the plastic – it is important to use only glass or copper when you are adding oils to your water! 

       3.  Gratitude is the Attitude

One of my most favourite morning routines is to get into the right mindset and be intentional about the direction I want my day to take. I begin by writing in my journal – I have the 5 Minute Journal which is a  daily practice in gratitude.  I begin and end my day writing in it, and I choose to apply a few drops of Magnify Your Purpose essential oil topically before I sit down to write. 
Even a few moments of gratitude in your morning, can result in miraculous changes in your life and over time, small changes add up and miracles start appearing daily. Being intentional, showing up as your best self, and living up to your potential is how you truly do Magnify YOUR Purpose. 

        4.  Sweat it Out

Now that we are hydrated, mindful and awake, it is time to get a sweat on. Whether you are a daily jogger, hit up the gym, or stretch it out on your yoga mat at home – the morning is the perfect time to get sweaty and ready to greet your day! I personally choose a yoga session in the mornings – not ever day, of course – I am human after all. But I DO notice a significant difference in my mood on the days I begin on my mat. I love to diffuse Frankincense + Lavender + Peppermint to get the most out of my mind/body exercise in the morning time

5.  NingXia Boost

Once I have energized my body with exercise, it is time to nourish it from the inside out. I love my morning shot of NingXia red. Not only is it delicious, but this energizing drink exclusive to Young Living is a power packed beverage full of antioxidants.
 It is great for the entire family, my kids especially love it when I freeze the pouches for a slushy treat! I love it as a spritzer – I use my soda stream or grab a can of bubbly water to make my NingXia an extra special treat! 

       6. Shower + Pamper Yourself

After my NingXia, it is time to hop into the shower to cleanse and refresh our bodies. I love using Shower Steamers or adding a few drops of peppermint + eucalyptus oils in the shower to invigorate my senses. I also love making my own soaps with YL oils – it is SO easy! Using a foaming soap dispenser, I simply use 1/4C castile soap, 10 drops each of my favourite oils, top with water and I’m set! I use this as a body wash, and then use my favourite face wash – Orange Blossom Face Wash.  
A great way to take your favourite shampoo + conditioner to the next level too, is to drop 5-10 each of Lavender + Cedarwood to promote healthy looking hair. 

       7.  EndoFlex

Once I step out of the shower, there are three oils I apply religiously. The first one, EndoFlex, deserves its own post here because IT IS THAT IMPORTANT. This oil so often gets overlooked and it should not. This blend offers serious endocrine support – the system of glands that regulalte metabolism, growth and development, tissue function sexual function, reproduction, sleep and mood!
 I am not kidding when I say it offers serious thyroid support!  I love it and both my husband and I apply it daily. This blend helps balance important hormones and strengthens vital organs, too. 

       8.  Progessence Plus + JOY

These two are beautiful supports for women, especially our unique makeup of hormones. It helps create a beautiful balance for women of all ages and helps both menstrual issues AND menopause issues, too! Progessence Plus helps regulate the progesterone levels in women’s bodies, containing a wild yam extract and developed by industry leading doctors to fully support women’s health, Progessence Plus is a staple in my wellness routine. 
Along with JOY, I roll PP on daily. Joy is applied over my heart to help create feelings of lightness and happiness – literally, JOY. It helps amplify the magnetic energy field around our heart chakras, aligning us with happiness and love.  

       9. Immubomb

ImmeBombs are amazing. I love making these little capsules up for my husband and I to have readily on hand. This recipe comes from a seriously GOOD essential oil book called Oil + Glass. This is an excellent reference guide for using your oils to make DIY’s that are amazing, beautiful and help the overall health of your family. The book is available for purchase here.

To make the Immu-Bomb yourself, take the clear vegetable capsules YL makes and fill with the following: 4 drops Thieves, 3 drops Oregano, 2 Drops Frankincesne and 2 drops Lemon. You can take two capsules per day and this combo helps boost your immune function, keeps you well and protects you from all sorts of yucky germs + illnesses – which is SERIOUSLY good news right now. 

10.  Head Out the Door

You’ve already hit an amazing stride by being mindful, working out and getting ready! Keep your momentum going with essential oil infused feul that will help you crush your to-do list. I love adding either Thieves or Cinnamon Bark to my coffee as a way to get all my oils in, and if you’re a tea drinker I suggest adding lemon or peppermint. When you’ve got your caffeine in you, it’s time to send the kids to school and carry on with the amazing, oil infused day you have started! 

11.  Thieves Hand Sanitizer

On my way to dropping my toddler at day care, getting my son off to school and walking into the classroom myself to teach grade two, I make sure I have my Thieves waterless hand purifier with me at all times. I apply this several times throughout the day because, let’s face it, second graders are GERMY! Whether you are a teacher or a mom like I am, or you work in a different industry, we are all faced with germy surfaces carrying things we would rather not bring home to our families. 
Thieves Sanitizer is seriously the way to go. With the way thing are currently, this product is selling out FAST. As in, it is out of stock and is gone within MINUTES when it comes back. (Right now, it comes with the Premium Starter Kit, which is just another reason why the kit is amazing.) Either way, this is something you want in your purse, on your desk, in your car, and on your hands at all times!  

12.  Vitality Waters

When I have had my coffee fix for the day, I know it is time to switch back to water and make sure I keep my hydration levels up. I choose to infuse my waters with citrus oils all day long, my favourites being grapefruit and citrus fresh. I use a copper water bottle, which is not only beautiful but is safe for me to use my oils in. 
Again, because citrus oils are so powerful, they can break down plastics and then leach toxins into your waters when you use them. Yuck. Stick to glass, stainless or go with copper for the additional health benefits lie I do! (local friends, Tea Spa Wellness has the most gorgeous ones!) 

13. Being Brave

As we navigate through our mornings, whether we are at work or at home, dealing with the public, in meetings or working independently, we are often faced with decisions and choices and stress and pressure. This is where one of my favourite oils, Valor, comes into play. This blend has been specifically made by Young Living to promote feelings of empowerment. It is designed to help us overcome fear and opposition so that we can stand tall – building our courage and self-esteem. It brings a feeling of calmness, peace and relaxation – all great emotions to build upon as we deal with negotiations, conferences and pressures in our days. 

14. Relaxing at Lunch

Wow, what a day already! Take a breather during your lunch break to help you unwind. Try to take a few minutes each day to relax at lunch and be mindful with yourself. This is when I love to apply a few swipes of my Stress Away oil. I keep a roller top on this beautiful blend and apply it at lunch and during breaks during my busy day. It helps remind me to close my eyes, center myself and takes the edge of stress off of my day so that I am ready to be present and positive with my afternoon. 

15. Diffusing Wherever you Are

Whether we are at our desks, on the go, in the office or a busy workspace, I suggest having oils go at all times! The ORB diffuser by Young Living is perfect for bringing with you, it plugs into a USB socket and is waterless so you don’t need to worry about spills or messes. I love mixing up what I diffuse each day and with the wicks that come with this diffuser, I can simply add a few drops of whatever it is I feel I need each day and get my air infused with oily goodness. 

16.  Beating the Afternoon Slump

It’s 3 pm, the afternoon slump has officially arrived and your craving for chocolate is at an alltime high. This is when I add a few drops of Slique essence to my water to help curb cravings and stay focused on the task at hand – which is getting my class ready for hometime. This invigorating oil infused supplement has such an energizing and minty flavour that it serves as the perfect pick me up, in replacement of a coffee I used to crave at this time of day. Not only do I sleep better without the added caffeine, I seriously do not feel the need to snack, which I used to before!  

17. Running Errands

Whether you run errands physically or shop online, this can be a tedious task. As moms, we are typically the ones to do this and we are thus the gatekeepers of our homes. We decide what products make their way across our doorsteps and onto our bodies. So, I encourage you to be mindful when you need to restock……when you are running on your Seedlings shampoo + body wash, if you need more Purification to prep your house for weekend guests or need to grab a few diffusers to combat your kids’ sports bags….or need to order more plant-based laundry soap and cleaning products from the Thieves line….you can make errands simply by adding your most important products to your Essential Rewards order and get the safest products available right on your doorstep. 

18. Keep it Rollin’

Rollers are seriously my favourite way to use my oils. I love the idea of making them myself, cusomizing them for the needs of my family and then having them handy when I need to apply. Whether I use my immune boost, my RELAX blend, my HAPPY blend or my ENERGIZE blend during the day…my DREAM at night or anything and everything in between, I can always be found with a roller within reach. As a bonus: they make beautiful gifts to share with others! Even my children use rollers, and it is so beautiful and empowering to see them taking their health in their own hands, knowing they can support their own bodies + emotions with oils.

 

19. School Pick Up

My son started kindergarten this school year & my daughter is in Day Care. Needless to say, they are germ filled and grimy by the time I pick them up – messy in a good way because I know they spent their day learning and having fun – but I don’t want that in my home! We use Thieves Spray at this time of day, Thieves Hand purifier and usually the Owie roll-on from the KidScents line because chances are – one of them has a scrape or cut that needs some loving. Young Living has an entire line of Kid Scents products, which are oil blends that come prediulted, ready to pop a roll-top on and apply topically on even small children safely! 

20. Home Diffusers

Once we are home and enjoying the late afternoon together, I love to refill our diffusers and get some oily goodness pumping into our air. Depending on the day, the season or my mood, I mix and match different oils to suit our needs. I keep diffusers going pretty constantly when we are at home, it just doesn’t feel right to me to NOT have them going. We don’t use scented candles or plug-ins anymore, I would much rather infuse our air with oils that promote and support our health and do not contain any harmful additives or chemicals. Here are some really beautiful blends for you to try. 

21. Thieves Clean

Before I start supper is usually the time I do a quick tidy of our home. In terms of keeping things simple – there is only one product I use : 

Thieves Cleaner! 

I love this plant based + essential oil product SO much! Which is saying something, because cleaning is certainly not something I am passionate about – but I want to make sure that whatever it is I am using in my home + around my family is not going to be harmful. 

Especially with us having little babies, I wanted to confidently choose something super gentle, effective and safe – thank god for Thieves! 

When you start with Young Living, you have the option of choosing the Thieves Starter Kit instead of the oil collection (or you can purchase it at anytime on your Essential Rewards Order!) to get your home all set up with the amazing line of Thieves products. 

22. Get Cooking

Whether you are a stay at home parent, CEO or student making your way through college, you have MADE IT! IT’s 5 O’Clock and the best part of the day has arrived – dinner! Make a bountiful pasta dish with Oregano, Basil and the barest hint of Black Pepper essential oils. Trust me, your family or guests will thank you and think you went to cooking school! Bon appetit! 

 
23. Laundry Time

When we first became pregnant was when I really started to pay attention to the household products we were using and notice what chemicals they contained. There is an app I love to use called the Think Dirty app and you scan the barcode of your home products to get a rating. It is super informative in helping you make good decisions for what products you allow in your home. 
Since our skin is our largest organ, and everything we put on it is absorbed in 26 seconds, laundry detergent can cause a lot of havoc on our systems if we aren’t careful about what we choose. I often will throw my laundry in while I am cooking dinner and fold it after the kids are asleep. I love choosing Thieves products because I know they are plant-based, safe, do a good job of keeping our clothing clean and help support our health at the same time! 

 
24. Bath Time

I love this time of day with my little ones! Using our Seedlings body + hair wash and soaping them up, breathing them in is seriously magical. They love the Lavender Calming Bath Bombs that are available from Young Living, and I love using plant based products that contain no harmful chemicals or dyes unlike so many other products out there. 

Depending on if they are coming down with something, cranky, fevered, etc. I will also add oils directly into their bath water, too!

This is one of my favourite parts of the day and I love knowing that I am using safe, oil based products on my babies! 

25. Wind Down

Once you’ve dried your kiddos off with the fluffliest towels and rubbed them down with the Seedlings baby oil, it’s time to relax as a family. This is when I love to diffuse Peace & Calming as our family kicks up our feet and gets cozy on the couch. 

Whether or not you have children, fur-babies, are relaxing solo or are enjoying the company of someone you love, diffusing Peace & Calming after dinner is a wonderful way to set the tone for a relaxing evening! 

26. Say NightNight – Babies + Kids

Every evening, I fill the diffusers in my children’s rooms with either Gentle Baby or Seedlings Calm. This helps enforce the nighttime routine we have crated and signals their bodies and minds that it is almost sleeptime. We give lavender foot massages and apply our Sweet Dreams rollers that I made on them. Then we read books, give a snuggle and it’s lights out. Whew! 

27. Reflection

Once the kids are asleep, it is a perfect time to reflect upon the day before I begin my own nighttime routine. Whether or not you are a parent, this is a great practice. I apply Gratitude oil over my heart and pull out my journal to reflect on the highs and lows of the day. This blend smells SO good and it actually serves now in helping me change my mood + mindset, if I have had a rough day and need to let some stress go. 

This quiet moment at the end of the day has become something I really value and look forward to as the evening winds down. 

28. Bedtime Routine

Just as we like to create routines for our children to prepare them for bedtime, it is helpful for us to do the same as adults. 

Even going through the motions of a bedtime routine helps signal our bodies that it is going to be time to rest. When you incorporate essential oils into this routine, it triggers different parts of your brain to help get your mind wired for sleep too – which results in a more restful night for you! 

Part of my routine, when I find the time for it, is an oil-infused bath to help me relax before bedtime. I love this ritual so much, using epsom salts + essential oils to help me unwind. 

As I am preparing for bed, I love to douse our sheets with a linen spray + get our nighttime oils in the diffuser. I actually keep two diffusers in our room…. have the AromaLux one for nighttime oils and keep the Desert Mist for my morning blends.
The blend I have been reaching for lately as I prepare for bed is Envision! 

29. Nighttime Skin Care

I used to think that skin care was primarily for the morning and what we did at night wasn’t important….was I ever wrong! As we sleep, our body repairs itself and so skin care is SO especially important to practice before bed, in order to give ourselves the best shot at the dewy, glowy and clear skin we all want!

That being said, I don’t like to complicate things when I don’t have to!

I like to remove my makeup with coconut oil and then roll frankincense directly onto my skin. Then, I apply either the ART moisturizer or my night repair serum and spray the Royal Hawaiian Hydrosol over my face. 
I spritz my hair with the mermaid spray, and I am done! I like to keep things simple and minimal, and by the time I do these simple + effective things, I know I have taken great care of my skin and I smell SO good! 

30. Sleep Support

Before we get tucked into our cozy sheets, I always have the nighttime diffuser going, and I pull out our topical oils. 

We apply Valor on the bottoms of our feet and our DREAM roller on wrists, behind ears and under our noses. 
There are so many essential oils that help support sleep, the trick is finding the one that works best for you. This is done by trial and erroer and being consistent with using your oils. 
When you find what works for you, it truly is incredible how much better you sleep, how the quality of your sleep improves and how your overall mind + body wellness is reflected in that! 

 
And there you have it! 30 Super Simple Ways to infuse your day with YL Essential oils. 
My biggest tip and takeaway for infusing your day with essential oils is to have your oils handy. Keep them out. Place little oily stations around your home. Keep your diffusers topped up, make rollers or pop roll tops on your oils to make it easy! If you aren’t using your oils, you aren’t getting the health benefits they offer AND you aren’t getting the most out of the investment you made when you purchased them. 
There seriously is nothing worse than buying a whole bunch of oils and then having them sit there because you aren’t using them or aren’t sure how to. This is where I come in….

The best way for ANYONE to start oiling, is to grab a kit. It is very important when becoming a member that you join the right community – I would love to have you in yours. We have amazing resources, support and personal guides to make sure that you are using your oils and loving them just as much as we are. 
When you are ready, I am more than happy to link arms with you and help you along in this oily journey. 

Please visit : http://www.marlysessentialwellness.weebly.com and click on the OILS link! 

Be Loud About the Things That Matter to You

use your voice to share what is important

Be loud about the things that are important to you, use your voice for what matters.  

To me. That’s being well. 

The most important thing in my life is to live peacefully and to surround myself with things that fuel my soul + to be near and present with the people I love. 

Because, I know all too well the route I will take and the road I will travel down if I neglect to do so. If I don’t focus on filling my own cup first.  Helping me to do this it to be loud, to talk, to share. 

Being loud about wellness.

 About mindfulness. 

About mental health and self-care.

It iss important to me;  because it is vital for my survival. Because it is what gets me out of bed in the morning and makes me who I am. Taking care of my self. My own mental health. My family. My classroom children. Those are the things that matter in my day to day, in my heart and in my path through life. 

 

(I’m an enneagram 2w3, by the way, which is the helper- and as I am learning more & more about this personality type so much makes sense to me!) 

It’s also important to me to use my oils in my physical, emotional + mental health practices and to share with you how and why I do – even if it’s not your thing – because it is part of my story.  It’s important to me to post about slowing down and focusing on the little things – because writing is therapeutic and it’s a good reminder for me to do the same. 

It’s important to share my story because – even though parts of it are messy – it’s my message.
 And I know that some of my darkest times, my lowest lows – can help remind others that they’re not alone when they struggle. 

Whatever it is that reflects your passion, your purpose or your direction in life – don’t ever make it small. Don’t fear sharing the things that are important to you. 

You never know when your voice is the one someone ne eds to hear. You never know when the chapters of your story – even the ones you’re not proud of or that make your heart break all over again – are going to be the ones that help guide someone else through their own turmoil. 

 

So be loud about what matters to you. We all have a voice and when we are living in our purpose, in our truths, in our passions – that is when we are aligned with our highest selves and that’s when the beautiful things really begin to happen. Because, in being loud, it reminds us that we are not alone in this. 

Happiness 

…the chase, and the realization that we may never reach the destination

I want to talk a little bit about happiness here, 

About the importance of it, the glorification of it, the illusion, the chase and the expectations of it. 
We all want to be happy. We know that we do. We are taugh from a young age that it is important to be happy. We all spend a lot of time, money, effort and energy into doing things, creating things, making choices, not making choices and striving for happiness. 

Sometimes it feels as though it is a constant pursuit, without a very real destination. Without an end in sight. 
We often feel that if we ‘get’ one more thing, if we ‘do’ one more thing, if we ‘achieve’ one more thing – then we will be happy. It always alludes us. It is always one step away. Unattainable, almost. 

Or, on the contrary,  we find ourselves feel almost guilty – as though we are settling or lowering our expectations if we say we are happy now – because, can’t we always strive to do better? To have more, to be more? Why are you happy with what you have now?

Happiness can be tricky that way. 

I think that it is important to work towards things we believe will make us happy. But I also think it is more  important to remember that happiness comes and goes. Just as sadness does. Just as dissapointment does. Or excitement. Or sorrow. Or guilt. Frutration. Joy. Anger. 

No other emotion gives us the illusion as though we must live in that state. We allow ourselves to experience sadness, but we don’t expect our entire lives to be sad. Why can we not experience happiness in the same way?

For me, I think the most important thing to strive for is calm. Content. Peace. Acceptance. 

Knowing that it is OK to feel low, to visit the sad and dark places sometimes. And that it is wonderful to find happiness in our lives. To experience joy and the wonderful things that life has to offer us. But that we can be a little more gentle with ourselves and our expectations of how life should be. 

You don’t need to feel happy all the time. Your life doesn’t need to be perfect. 

Instead, look around, at where you are. What you have. Who is there with you. 

Yes, working towards happiness is important. Making decisions that we believe will better our lives – and the lives of others – is important. Of course happiness IS important. But, it is more important, I think, to appreciate the journey – regardless of whether or not your final destination is ‘happiness’.

I think we should all take a moment to be grateful for all that we have here in front of us. For the things that fill our hearts. For the ways in which we are safe and loved and protected. For the things that matter. 
 Take a deep breath, let yourself relax. Feel the peace that comes with knowing that – yes – in every season, whether it is happy or not,  this too shall pass. 

….. and that, is a beautiful thing. 

bloom

….my chosen word for 2020

Louise Hay stated that….

Many of you start New Year’s resolutions on the first of the year, but because you don’t make internal changes, the resolutions fall away very quickly. Until you make the inner changes and are willing to do some mental work, nothing out there is going to change. 

The only thing you need to change is a thought – only a thought. 

What can you do for yourself this year in a positive way? What would you like to do this year that you did not do last year? What would you like to let go of this year that you clung so tightly to last year? What would you like to change in your life?

Are you willing to do the work that will bring about those changes?

…and her thoughts and questions got me thinking as I begin to envision what I would like this upcoming year to be like. I started thinking about what inner work I have done, and have yet to do. It made me think about how I can make small and daily changes in my life so that I am able to live positively, calmly and with gratitude. It also made me think about what fears, beliefs and limitations I have been holding on to – and what I am ready and able to let go of. 

I can say that I, for one, was guilty last year of making wonderful and beautiful resolutions that I definitely both forgot about over the course of the year and also did not do the internal and mental work to achieve. As I was reflecting and reading my last years’ intentions, I felt that. I knew that it was written and decided from a place of yes, wanting those things in my life, but without the energy and true passion behind it required to do the work. 

Over the course of this year, and especially in the last quarter of the year, I have learned a lot about myself. I have done a lot of therapy, treatment, reading, writing, reflecting and learning about the way I truly am. In doing so, I can not only honour where I am and where I have been but I can see a little bit about how much further I need to go in this healing journey.

While I do set intentions and resolutions at the beginning of every, a practice I have not adopted in the past is the choosing of a word to carry forward with me into the upcoming year ahead. I decided to this year and I had a few key words repeat themselves to me and I had considered a few options. I decided to do the modern day thing and go online to take a quiz to help me choose a word. Well, they say that there are no coincidences in the universe, and the word that I got was – bloom. 


(As a sidenote: in later discussing this with my mom, she said that if she had to guess at, or choose, a word for me this year that BLOOM would have been it! Further confirming that this really is my word for 2020)

To bloom is a beautiful process of becoming, and I love that oh so much. It reminds me that growth is a process. Learning is a process. Surrendering is a process and finding out who we really are is a process. It also reminds me to be patient, gentle and compassionate with myself – for we certainly would not rush the blooming of a flower and so why should we rush this process of ourselves? There is a plan, a purpose and a pathway for all of us – and we journey through it at our own perfect timing, even when it doesn’t seem like it. We go through seasons in life, seasons of rainfall and seasons of blooming.

 I honestly believe that the last few years, for me, have been ones of rainfall. Yes, wonderful and amazing things happened and there were periods when life was beautiful and promising – but overall, in the growth of my heart and spirit, I think I was experiencing a season of rain. Rain is necessary for the flowers to grow and bloom, which is exactly what I hope to do in this upcoming year and into this next decade. 

When I saw that this was the word chosen, I knew that it was meant for me. I actually laughed a little when I saw it, because I recently created a canvas piece of art for myself and chose the word ‘bloom’ as the focus of it. It is a word I can carry with me as I welcome in the challenges and the joys that this year is sure to bring. It is a word I held in my heart as I wrote meaningful intentions, practices, goals and resolutions I hope to achieve and implement in 2020 and beyond. 
Choosing a word is a little like choosing a mantra, a vision, a promise and a committment to how you’d like to live, see yourself, and attract over the next year. I am so ready to bloom in 2020. I am so ready to unfold, relax, open up, let in the light and to gracefully lead and allow others to do the same. The start of a new year is such a beautiful time to release what no longer serves us and open ourselves to the beauty and miracles that await us each day.
Whatever your word for this year is, I invite you to bloom here alongside with me, and to give yourself permission to do so beautifully.