Monday, February 28, 2011

So, how did the cleanse go???

I'm at the end of the week and I have to say I'm feeling great!

After feeling pretty crappy on day two, it was fairly easy from there.
I felt really clear around day 3, and quite energetic around day 4 and 5. This weekend was a little more difficult again, not because I was feeling bad, but being the weekend I found it a little harder with socialising, eating out etc. We normally go out for Sunday brunch, but this weekend I decided to give it a miss as I wasn't sure I could pass up my usual poached eggs on toast...

Nevertheless, I have really enjoyed this week. Not only do I feel great, but I've also knocked off a couple of kilos at the same time!

Big thanks to Nat from The Pagoda Tree for not only the cleansing program, but for all of her amazing recipes - without them I think I would have really struggled staying on track.

So where to now? Well, I'm going to keep up the 2l+ of water daily- including lemon water on waking, replacing my coffee for green tea, lots of veggies, and most importantly I'm going to quit sugar. Yep, this is a big one for me! And I'm slightly freaked out by it, but I'm going to give it a crack and see how I go. I'll be writing more about it in the coming weeks.

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Sweet weekend - tips to create a balanced life

Thanks to tinybuddha, I came across these 9 tips for creating balance in your life.

So often do we find ourselves pushing our minds and bodies to the limit. We juggle work with family, with friends and everything else in between. We forget to take the time for 'us', to centre ourselves and find balance.

These are some great tips to take into your everyday life.

1. Acknowledge: Take some time to really look at your life, your state of mind, and how you’re feeling. Be honest with yourself and notice the areas of your life that you’re neglecting.
2. Examine: Notice if you’re leaning more toward an internal or external focus, or if there are areas within each category that you would like to be more balanced.
3. Set Goals: Look at the outline to help you decide which ways you want to balance your life. Make a list.
4. Plan Tasks: Make a list of daily, weekly, and monthly tasks that you will need to do to achieve each of these goals. What have you tried in the past? Did it work? If not, what can you do differently?
5. Reflect: What is the most important thing you’ve accomplished in the past? How did you stay focused toward this goal? How did you handle your fears, doubts, anxieties, worries, and negative self talk? How does it feel to know that you accomplished the goal in spite of these parts of yourself?
6. Prepare: What is your inner “stuff” that will try to keep you from sticking to your plan? (i.e. fears, worries, doubts, negative self talk etc.) Can you specify the things you will say to yourself to push you off track? (i.e. “just one more bite, I’ll start eating better tomorrow”) Make a list.
7. Empower: What do you need to remember in those times? What are things you can say to that self-sabotaging part of yourself? Be kind to yourself. Balance won’t feel good if you’re cruel to yourself in creating it!
8. Connect: Is there a person or a tactic you can use to keep yourself supported, motivated, and focused in those hard times? I highly recommend connecting and sharing your inner process with someone. Find someone who can help you challenge your inner demons, and celebrate your little accomplishments.
9. Plan: Just like accomplishing any goal in life, it takes time and effort to overcome your habitual patterns and create new ones. If you stay on track with this detailed and intentional process for three whole months, then there is a good chance you will create new habits to enjoy a more balanced life going forward!
Happy weekend all! I hope you can take some time to yourself this weekend, to sit and read a book, take a bath, or go for a walk- whatever makes you happy! x

Friday, February 25, 2011

Product review - Egyptian Magic

Slightly dodgy name aside, without the numerous glowing endorsements and positive reviews I came across while researching this product, Egyptian Magic wouldn't be something I would have rushed out to purchase initially.

But I must admit that there's more to this all-purpose skin cream than meets the eye.

So far I have used it as a moisturiser (great for rough, dry skin on elbows, knees and heels), and although there is a slightly greasy residue left when you rub it into the skin, I am pleasantly surprised.
It reminds me a little of Lucas' Paw Paw Ointment (without all the Petroleum Jelly). I can see myself using this one for many different things.

Use it as a night moisturising treatment for dry skin, a lip balm, a hand moisturiser, an eye cream, to help ease eczema and psoriasis, or to help tame frizzy hair (be careful with this one as if you apply to too close to the root it can make your hair oily).

The best part about the product? There are only 6 ingredients in total! Olive oil, bees wax, honey, bee pollen, royal jelly, bee propolis (and they're actually easy to pronounce which is always a good sign!)
And it's pretty reasonably priced too which is always a plus.

Have your tried Egyptian Magic?

Thursday, February 24, 2011

All things beautiful... February

This month my fave little crafty find comes from etsy seller Takit.
I have been growing my own veggies for a couple of months now and I think growing your own veggies is a brilliant thing to do if you have the space. Not only do you know exactly where your food is coming from, but getting out there and getting your hands dirty is really quite therapeutic.

These gorgeous little tags would be an adorable addition to your herb or veggie garden.

What do you think? Cute huh?!

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Cleansing update

Today I'm onto day 3 of my End of Summer Body Cleanse.

When I started the cleanse I was a little worried about what the first couple of days would be like. I knew that cutting out things like sugar and caffeine often lead to headaches and feeling a little lackluster initially. Well, after day 1 I was feeling quite cocky. I had no cravings, no headaches, and I was feeling pretty damn good.
That is, up until lunchtime yesterday... The headache came and I took myself to bed early because I was totally exhausted.
Today I'm feeling better. Still a little hazy and a dull headache but fingers crossed I'm over the worst part.

So let me give you a quick run down on what exactly is involved in the cleanse.
- cutting out dairy, meat, alcohol, most grains, sugar, coffee and soft drinks
- adding in lots of veggies, fruit, water, legumes/nuts and good fats like olive oil, coconut oil and avocado
- morning cleansing shake
- evening probiotic
- lemon water on waking
- light exercise daily
- sunshine :)

I have to say that the biggest surprise for me so far is just how much variety is out there when you take away so many of the things that we eat on a daily basis. And a big thanks to Nat on this one too. Check out her blog for the yummy curry and coconut dahl I have made so far - delish!

So onward and upward from here. Let's hope I'm feel brand spanking new by the end of the week!

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Tea time - peppermint

As promised, time for the down-low on yet another tea.

This time we're looking at peppermint.
And the benefits for this little minty cup makes it a favourite for many.

Peppermint helps with:
  • improving the symptoms irritable bowel syndrome
  • easing nausea and vomiting
  • improving digestion and reducing heartburn
  • bad breath
  • controlling muscle aches and chronic pain
  • congestion and coughs related to colds and allergies
  • fighting stress
Pretty good huh?!
Plus, it really does taste good!

Do you drink peppermint tea?

Monday, February 21, 2011

Product review - RMS Beauty Living Luminizer

By now you're probably well aware that I have a thing for pretty much most of the RMS Beauty line...

The Living Luminizer is one that I ordered a sample for from a couple of months ago.
Spiritbeautylounge are great for trying out new products as not only can you purchase sample sizes to try before you buy, but with many of their full-size products you purchase they also send you an accompanying sample so you can try the sample first and if you're not happy with it you can return the unopened full size one for a full refund. Pretty good huh?!

So back to the living luminizer.

Before going clean with my make-up, I had used Benefit High Beam on occasion to highlight my cheekbones and brow line. I liked the idea of a luminizer. My make-up was fairly matt, and adding in a luminizer meant that I could create a healthy glow and highlight certain areas of my face.

Well, I have to say that I am absolutely loving the RMS Living Luminizer. In fact, even if I didn't know it was part of the super clean RMS line, I would still prefer it over the Benefit one. And it seems I'm not the only one with a thing for this little magic product. There are heaps of rave reviews about it out there (the girls from nomoredirtylooks are a big fan), and Elle Magazine has named it as one of their favourite beauty products.

Now, it's not ultra cheap to buy but I can guarantee you it was last a looong time, just like all of the RMS products. If you're in Australia like me and you want to give it a go, you can buy it here.

Do you use luminizer? What's you favourite application trick?

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Sweet weekend - Body Cleansing

As of Monday, thanks to Nat from Fertile Body, Heart and Soul, I have decided to join her End of Summer Body Cleanse.

So why cleanse your ask?

Well, like most of you, over the Christmas holidays I overindulged... just a little... on yummy Christmassy things. Now, that seemed to have caught up with me and, almost three months into the year I'm finding it hard to budge that last kilo or so.

Not only that, but I had heard great things about Nat's Spring Body Cleanse last year and how great participants were feeling by the end of the cleanse.

Now, normally the thought of cutting out alcohol, sugar, caffeine and meat would make me run for the hills, but the truth is that I'm really quite looking forward to it. I have been eating pretty well over the past few weeks, cutting out caffeine and most sugar, but after birthday celebrations this month and some other social celebrations, I know I need to have a break from the booze, and I think this is just the thing that will help me to give my body a much needed cleanse.

So I think I'll be off to enjoy the weekend before the hard work starts :)
I'll be giving updates next week on how things are travelling.

Until then, happy weekend all!

Do you detox or cleanse on a regular basis?  

Friday, February 18, 2011

Skincare at home - baking soda

A while back I posted about food for your face; natural, made-at-home skincare.

Well, I thought I'd add some more awesome products to the list. Many are likely to be lurking in your pantry, and might not have been touched in quite some time.

First up is baking soda...
  • excessive sweating/natural deodorant
Baking soda not only returns the skin's pH to normal, but it also helps kill the excess bacteria that can cause body odour.
  • natural shampoo
Now this one might seem a bit weird but it works great as a replacement for your chemical-ridden shampoo. It can make your hair a little tangled and dry (it's great if you have oily hair) so make sure you condition afterwards.
  • Toothpaste/teeth whitener
I got this tip way back when I was a teenager and my orthodontist told me about how I could naturally whiten my teeth. Now, it doesn't taste the best but it gives your teeth a great clean and with continued use can make them brighter and whiter.
  • Relief from bug bites
I haven't tried this one out myself but I have heard that mixed with a little water to make a paste, baking soda can relieve itching, irritated skin if you have been bitten by a bug.
  • As a face mask to dry out acne
If you suffer from acne this one could be a great, natural alternative to harsh chemicals on your skin. Baking soda dries out the pimples and can prevent new acne from forming.

So, there you have it! I'm sure there's plenty more ways to make use out of this little miracle product.

Apart from in the kitchen, what do you use baking soda for?

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Tea time - ginger

After my recent post about tea tips and tricks, I thought I'd add some more info about different teas and their benefits.

First up is ginger tea.

Now ginger is something that has some amazing health benefits but is something I have only really used in stir fries and stews in the past.

But you know what? Having ginger tea is a great way to get all of the benefits of ginger, at any time of the day!

Ginger helps with:
  • relieving nausea and motion/travel sickness
  • improving digestion
  • inflammation (a good one for all you auto-immune sufferers out there)
  • improving muscle pain
  • reducing dizziness
  • minimizing symptoms of the common cold, allergies and respiratory conditions
I bought some ginger and lemon tea and gave it a whirl last night and it was really nice! Might have to make it an addition to my daily tea intake...

Do you drink ginger tea?

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

another year older...

Today I turn 30.
While I can't quite believe I'm bidding adieu to my 20's, I'm excited to see what's ahead in my flirty 30's!
My, how the last 10 years have flown by... I have changed and grown so much.
I am so very grateful for all I have at this point in my life.
I'm a very lucky birthday girl :)

Monday, February 14, 2011

Happy Valentine's Day!

Happy Valentine's Day all!
Although I'm not a big believer in the whole Valentine's thing, I am a big believer in telling those you love how you feel about them.
So today, take the opportunity to show your partner, family and friends how much they mean to you.

Friday, February 11, 2011

Sweet weekend - the importance of sleep

What better way to kick off a weekend than a good old fashioned sleep-in?

Ok, maybe not for those who get woken at 6am to the sound of little feet running down the hallway and then dive bombing you in bed. But for those who have the opportunity - go for it!

Over Christmas I had a 2 week break from work and instead of venturing to the beach or heading off on a road trip I slept. Yep, that's pretty much all I did. And it was wonderful!

You see I'm not one of those people that copes well on 5 or 6 hours a night. You know the type (and you may be one of them!), the ones who go out on a 'school night' and wake up feeling fresh and ready to go for the working day. Well, I'm not one of them.

I like my 8 hours minimum, and if I get less than that on a string of nights then I eventually crash.

Perhaps it has something to do with AI disease. I have found in the past few years I am relying more and more on the amount of shut eye I get on a daily basis.

But you know what, I'm onto a pretty good thing I reckon.

Sleep is just as important as maintaining a healthy lifestyle when you're awake. Eating well and exercising is one thing but without enough sleep you run the risk of increased stress levels, inflammation and other health issues. And did you know that a recent study conducted in Sweden shows that sleep can in fact make you look better! Hmmm... that's food for thought!

So what's the recommended amount of pillow time then? Well, while the exact amount can vary from person to person, aiming for at least 7-8 hours a night is a good place to start.
And another key thing to remember here is to aim for at least an hour or two before midnight if you can. The more sleep we get before the clock strikes 12 the better.

So this weekend how about catching up on some well earned z's?
Your body will love you for it!

Do you find you function better the more sleep you have?

Skin care myths

We've all heard a skin care myth or two in the past that we may have fallen for at the time but later on realised how crazy it indeed was.

Here's a list for you that you may already be aware of, or you may very well be surprised by...

1/ You only need sunscreen on a sunny day
Well this one is perhaps something you may have learnt the hard way. Spending some time in the great outdoors on an overcast day doesn't mean you wont walk away with sunburn.  Even when the skies are clear, UV radiation from the sun still reach the earth's surface. So when you're spending long amounts of time outside, no matter the weather, make sure you still take care.

2/ Putting oil on your face will make you break out
Now this is a common one that many people are still confused by. The reality is, the right kind of oil won't lead to this at all. The key is that it needs to be the right kind of oil. So going for natural, organic ones like coconut, rosehip, jojoba and argan are great for your skin!

3/ Chocolate makes you break out
So this is a big one that I believed for many years. The reality is that pimples aren't caused by what you eat, rather your hormones. Testosterone, which makes your skin increase its oil production, tends to make you produce sticky oil that gets blocked in the pores and therefore causes the pimples. The reason many people link chocolate to pimples is that for women especially, during certain times of the month (you know, the time of the month that we crave chocolate), we have changes in hormone levels, and these changes can lead to breakouts.

4/ The more expensive a skin care product, the better it is
Now this is one many of us devoted product junkies would be familiar with. I have tried everything from cleansers on the supermarket shelf to high end moisturisers that have left a nice dent in my purse. The truth is that price doesn't come into it. Many products on the lower end of the price scale can work just as good, if not better, than their expensive counterparts. Take coconut oil or rosehip oil for instance. These can be found quite cheaply but they work absolute wonders!

5/ If something is 'organic' then it must be good for your skin
It was only a couple of months ago that I found out the truth about this one. Products labelled as 'organic' can still contain harmful chemicals and there are no regulations on what can and cannot be labelled organic. You see, they might have added one ingredient that is organic to the mix (along with another 10 that aren't) and they can slap the organic label on it and there's nothing we can do about it.... hmmm.....

6/ Products with collagen in them help fight wrinkles
This little fib has made skincare companies billions. For collagen to be of any use, it has to penetrate the skin, and since collagen molecules are so big, this is simply impossible. So look out for products with added collagen, along with elastin and hyaluronic acid, as they will stay on the surface of the skin, giving little or no benefit at all!

What are some myths you've heard of in the past that you now know are simply a load of crap?

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Tea tips and tricks

Do you love tea?

If you do, then you would no doubt know how to brew up the perfect batch.
But if you are looking for some tips and tricks to making a super yummy pot then you might enjoy this read.

After you boil your water, let it set for a minute or so to allow it to cool so it doesn't cook the tea leaves. Green tea tastes best around 70 degrees celsius, while white teas taste best around 80/85 degrees, and black, rooibos and and most herbal teas can be brewed in truly boiling water.
If you use loose tea leaves, about one teaspoon should be perfect for one cup
Green tea needs only 1-2 minutes steeping time (the time you leave the tea leaves or tea bag in the cup). Steeping longer than the recommended time will cause the tea to have a bitter taste, and you might not get all the nutritional benefits tea is reputed to have.

Black and white tea usually needs around 3-5 minutes steeping time, depending on how strong you like the taste.

Herbal teas can be steeped for a longer time. Around 5-8 minutes is usually about right. If you don't like the
taste of a strong herbal taste however then you may need to shorted the amount of time.

Not keen on hot tea over the Summer months? How about trying iced peppermint, licorice, spearmint, lemongrass or green tea?

In the next couple of weeks I'll be doing a post on various teas and their benefits so for all those tea lovers out there make sure you check back soon!

What's your fave tea tip or trick?

Monday, February 7, 2011

Thought for today

Today I came across this...

If I could live my life again, I'd laugh at my misfortunes more and other people's predicaments less. Spend more time counting my blessings, less time scrutinizing my blemishes.

I'd spend more time playing with my children and grandchildren, less time watching professional athletes perform. More time enjoying what I have, less time thinking about the things I don't have.

If I could live my life again, I'd walk in the rain more without an umbrella and listen less to weather reports. I'd spend much more time outdoors in small towns and much less time in tall buildings and big cities. I'd eat more of everything healthy and delicious, less of everything each meal, saving enough on the bill to feed a starving child.

If I could live my life again, I'd get more beach sand between my toes and less friction between myself and others. I'd take more long baths and fewer showers (I can't explain why I've always been in such a hurry to spend my time). I'd spend more time with old people and animals, less time with strangers at clubs and parties.

I'd act the age of my children and grandchildren more and act my own age less. I'd visit libraries, bookstores, and computer networks more and malls and movie theatres less. I'd play the piano more and play fewer mindless games like solitaire. I'd give my spouse and children more tender touches and much less advice.

If I could live my life again, I'd spend more time fully involved in the present moment, less time remembering and anticipating. I'd be more aware of my core values and life mission, and less concerned with the reasons why I might not measure up.

I'd smile more, frown less. I'd express my feelings more, try less to impress my friends and neighbours. I'd forgive and ask forgiveness more, and curse my adversaries less - but most of all I'd be more spontaneous and active, less hesitant and subdued.

When a great idea or spur-of-the-moment adventure popped up - an Easter egg hunt, an open house at school, a game of hide-and-seek, an opportunity to solve a problem at work or to satisfy a disgruntled customer, a hay ride, a chance to build a snowman or paint over graffiti, an invitation to watch a lunar eclipse or a shuttle launch. I'd be less likely to stay in my chair objecting, "It's not in our plan" and more inclined to jump up and say, "Yes, let's".

Source: Brother Jeremiah's free-verse style from "I'd Pick more Daisies"

What would you change, if anything, if you could live your life again?

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Sweet weekend - shoe heaven!

Now, I don't want to encourage you to spend all day at work surfing the net... sooooo I thought I'd send this one on to you to sweeten your weekend instead (and so you can spend as long as you like having a play... I know you wanna!)

This place was sent onto me from a work colleague who shares with me her passion for all things beautiful, shoes included.

Shoes of Prey was set up by 3 friends, based in NSW, and is basically every girls dream online store.
You can design your very own pair of shoes, right from the style, to the heel height, to the colour, to the fabric.

You really need to get on there to see what I mean!

Happy weekend and happy shopping all!

Friday, February 4, 2011

I heart love

Well, Valentine's Day is just over a week away now (14th Feb for all those forgetful fellas out there!)
Personally, while I'm a fan of the love that's in the air on V-Day, I think the money spent and the emphasis put on showing someone you love them on one day of the year is all a bit crazy.

I mean, check out the price of flowers - it's totally ludicrous!

I tell my hubby to give the flowers a miss, I would much rather he bought them on a random day, as they would mean much more to me.

What I do love is a beautiful card or letter to your love telling them how much they mean to you.

And if you're feeling crafty, how about making something? You'll earn big points doing something like this, I promise!

Or, if that's out of the question, then maybe you could just buy something that someone else has made? These hand cut heart garlands from PaperPolaroid are just gorgeous.
Or maybe if words of love are more your style then this special memory book from Kikki K is up your alley.
I got this for my hubby and left it for him to read on the morning of our wedding.
They also have ones for Mums, Dads and gradparents. I gave one to my Mum on my wedding day as well. She is very special to me and she had made me the most amazing wedding dress that I simply adored and was so grateful to her for.

Do you celebrate Valentine's Day?

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Product review - RMS Beauty "un" cover-up

I think I might just be in love with a whole lotta products from the RMS Beauty range.

Ever since I started going clean I have been on the hunt for a good foundation. And I mean a really good foundation.

You see I used to be a Mac devotee. I loved so many of their products. But I love my skin and my health more.

So I thought I'd give the RMS one a go. Now, it isn't exactly promoted as a foundation, more of a cover up/concealer.  And when the teeny tiny pot arrived in the mail I thought it was a bit of a rip off as it looked like it would only last me a week at most, and that is if I used it on a quarter of my face.

Well, funny thing that. One week on and I don't even seem to have made a dent in the pot at all!
I have been using it as an overall foundation and I really love the look it gives my skin.
When I used Mac I found I got more of a matt look (I also used a powder to set the make-up) but with RMS I used it on it's own and I found it gave my skin a nice dewey look which I just love.
It doesn't seem to stay on as well as my old foundation, especially after a hot day (thanks for the heatwave Melbourne!) but all in all it's pretty damn good.
What I also love is the fact that it blends so well. It's light so it's not a heavy, caked-on look, but it covers up redness and imperfections pretty well.

So I think I might just be converted!
I wouldn't mind continuing the search for a slightly heavier foundation that I can use when going out at night or when I want a little more coverage but for now this one's pretty damn good.
And I must say that there's another couple of products in this line that I am loving just as much and will update you on over the coming weeks.

Have you used RMS Beauty products? 

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

The Great Health Debate

Thanks to Jess, the Wellness Warrior for posting about the upcoming Great Health Debate today on her blog.

If you've ever wondered if raw food is better, or whether you should cut carbs out of your diet, or add daily supplements, then this might just be right up your alley (I know I'm pretty excited about it!)

It's an online series of videos that run over 7 days (from the 6th to the 13th February) and is free to attend.

Basically it will involve a number of health experts getting together to chat about various diet theories and their take on each.  It will give you a chance to take what you choose back into your everyday living.

I always say 'it's great to be informed'.
Hopefully this will give many of us the opportunity to clear up some of the myths surrounding many popular diet theories around these days.

Find out more here.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

I am grateful

Today I am thinking about how grateful I am for all the things I am blessed to have in my life.
My husband, my dog, my family, my close girlfriends, my house...

I have been going through a bit of a rough patch over the past few weeks. You see, the contract on my job is up in a few months and it's likely I am going to have to find something new.
I have had job security since I was 14, and to now face possible unemployment at the age of 30 is a little scary...

But you know what? I have faith that all will work out in the end.
As my very wise and wonderful parents often tell me 'one door closes, another one opens'.

Did you know that you can't actually be anxious if you're too busy being grateful???
It's true - give it a whirl and see!

So for now, I have faith that another door will open, but for now I am just grateful for all the amazing things I have in my life :)

What are you gateful for?

Picapp Widget

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...