Author: Lori

Getting Started with Essential Oils

Getting Started with Essential Oils

What is an essential oil?  Essential oils are plant extracts that are harvested and distilled that have the power to change lives for the better.  You can improve your families physical wellness, purify your home and uplift your spirits,  all from a tiny drop of oil.

Gary Young, the founder of Young Living Essential Oils, wanted the best life possible for himself and his family.  His passion led him to essential oils.  With Gary and the help of modern science he was able to find a healthier, and a more purpose filled life through essential oils.  You can read more about Gary Young and his story here.

Young Living proudly sets the standard for essential oil purity and authenticity.  They take pride in carefully monitoring the production of their oils through a unique Seed to Seal process. From the time the seed is harvested until the oil is sealed in the bottle, YL applies rigorous quality controls to ensure that you are receiving essential oils exactly the way nature intended.  To learn more about YL’s seed to seal process, visit them here.

To see a complete catalog of Young Living products, click here.

My Story

I was introduced to essential oils a few years ago when I attended a home gathering at a friends house.  I was curious about this product and had no idea what I was getting myself into.  She had a diffuser going with essential oils in it that made her whole house smell wonderful!  I wanted that!  Then I learned how toxic the things that I was using in my house everyday were and how they could really hurt us, not help us…including those smelly things that you burn or plug in!

I started to read further into essential oils and I bought my first bottle of lavender essential oil.  That was my first and only purchase.  I had no idea how to use it.  My friend told me to dab some on a cotton ball and place beside my bed to help me sleep at night, or in my car to freshen up, or put it in my drawers to add a fresh scent.  The problem with that was it only lasted a short time and I wanted it to smell longer than that, and, I wanted my whole house to smell good.  I just had to have one of those diffuser things!  My friend had me over again (1:1) and we went through the whole speal on how essential oils can help you and your health and well being.  I was sold, right then and there.  I bought the starter kit and the rest, so they say, was history.

I have not tried to build my business of essential oils until now.  I want everyone to know how these little bottles of joy can really make a difference in your life.  I am a believer!

How to get started

If you are interested in these wonderful products, you can go to Young Living’s website, or you can ask me.  I’d be happy to walk you through any questions you may have.  I promise you won’t be disappointed.

Check out my Pinterst page for more ideas on how to use essential oils.  It’s a huge part of my life now.

Also, check out this month’s promotion here.  When you sign up for the starter kit, you get the 15-ml bottle of tangerine oil FREE.  What’s better than free?

Spring Cleaning with Essential Oils

Spring Cleaning with Essential Oils

Spring is my favorite season for so many reasons.  It just reminds me of a fresh clean start.  The trees are in bloom, flowers bud and the smell in the air is so crisp and clean.  It’s a great time to get those germs out of the house, open up the windows and clean, clean, clean.  It sounds so tedious but with Young Living Essential Oils, it’s so easy, and it can actually be enjoyable.

If you’re not an essential rewards member, you need to be to get in on this great deal!

Once you become an essential rewards member, get started with this month’s promotion filled with cleaning basics such as Thieves Household cleaner and Tea Tree essential oil.

This all-purpose cleaner can be used on any surface in your home for dusting, spot cleaning, scrubbing, or any other cleaning need. Wherever you use it, you’ll feel good knowing it’s safe to use around everyone in your family, including pets.

I love cleaning my counters and floors in the kitchen and bathroom with my Thieves household cleaner.  It smells so fresh and clean!  Formulated with the power of Young Living’s Thieves oil blend, you can get a deep clean without dangerous or synthetic ingredients, or that harsh chemical smell. Thieves cleaner also includes the scent of Lemon essential oil for an even more uplifting aroma. Chores will feel like less of a chore with the sweet-and-spicy scent and effective cleaning power of Thieves Household Cleaner.

 

Young Living also has “mini” kits to get you started.

Essential Oil Basic Set

Treat yourself and the people you love to these Young Living must-haves. This set includes three of the most-loved, easy-to-use oils—Lavender, Peppermint, and Thieves®—and a helpful usage booklet. It’s a great way to stock up on the basics you can’t live without or share your essential oil love with friends and family members!

Includes:

  • 5-ml Thieves® essential oil blend
  • 5-ml Lavender essential oil
  • 5-ml Peppermint essential oil
  • Essential Oils 101 booklet

Citrus Vitality Set

Add a splash of citrus to your spring cooking with this collection! Featuring YL’s most popular citrus Vitality™ oils, this set is the perfect way to add some zest to your favorite spring recipes, including sorbets, marinades, popsicles, vinaigrettes, roasted veggies, and more!

If you would like to know more about Young Living essential oils, leave a comment below or send me an email.  I’d be happy to walk you through the steps.

Spending Time with God

Spending Time with God

 

I admit that it is so difficult for me (and maybe it’s the same for many of you) to actually take the time and just sit in a quiet room, with no distractions, no cell phone, no TV, and just spend time with God.  We have such busy lives (which I really hate sometimes)…things we need to get done, places we need to be, errands we need to run and people that need us, that we just have no time left for God.

It makes me sad really.  Why is this “stuff” all so important to us?

How often do we wonder why we don’t hear from God?  But the question is…do we really take the time to listen?  It’s not that he’s not talking to us, it’s that we are not listening.

A few months ago, I’ve decided to try to change that in my life.

We all have this great resource called THE COMPUTER (yes, the technology I condemned earlier) that we use for most everything in our lives.  What if we put it to work for the Greater good?

Luis Palau talks about spending time with God and how important it is for us to just sit and listen and talk to Him.  It’s important to turn off the TV, Facebook and other “noises” that distract us and we need to just sit quietly and pray.

There are three very important things that can help us on this journey.

Prayer

Pray, pray, pray.  God hears us.  Pray while you’re driving, when you wake up in the middle of the night, and when you go for that quiet walk.  Talk to God all day long throughout the day.  I find when I pray, I am able to remain calm about things that I am worried about.  It IS true what Philippians 4:6 says “Do not be anxious about anything.  Instead, in every situation, through prayer and petition with thanksgiving, tell your requests to God.”

You don’t have to be eloquent in your prayers.  Simply just talk to God as if He was your friend sitting next you.  Tell Him what’s on your mind and what you are worried about.  I promise you will feel better.

Start a prayer journal and write out your prayers in your journal.  I found this great idea for a prayer journal here.  It’s quite amazing and free!   It is also so surprising to go back and read your prayers months from now and find out how God answered them.  Sometimes  God might not answer my prayers the way that I wanted Him to but then I read them and see that He did answer my prayer in His way.  My prayer life has really changed since I started doing this.  If you’re not a “journal-er”, that’s OK…just jot down quick prayers.  You don’t have to make it fancy, but for all you creative people out there, this is really fun.

Read the Bible

Reading the Bible is so important, but you may find that the bible is hard to read.  It’s hard to know where to start.  Do you start in the beginning or somewhere in the middle?  If you’re like me, I can’t just open the bible and start reading.  I need a place to start.

A great place to start is with a good bible study.  Start small but start.  You don’t have to read the entire bible to be close to God.  There is a lot of information to understand.  Some people like to do a “plan” to read the entire bible in a year’s time. I would not recommend that to start but it’s something you can strive for.  Find yourself some great resources and studies.  You don’t have to spend a lot of money and go out and buy books either.  You have it right at your finger tips (ha! technology again!). Even if you don’t have a bible, you get one here.

Here are a few bible studies and devotions that I have found and you can have them delivered right to your inbox

HomeWord is a great site that can get you started right off the bat.  Jim Burns is President of HomeWord and Executive Director of the HomeWord Center for Youth and Family.  He is the author of many great books including Closer: 52 Devotions to Draw Couples TogetherConfident ParentingThe Purity Code and Creating an Intimate Marriage, to name a few.   I’ve read a few of his books and I really enjoyed them.

Another great resource is Anne Graham Lotz, Billy Graham’s daughter and evangelist and the host of Angel Ministries.  She speaks around the globe and has been called the “best preacher in the family” by her father.  I personally subscribe to her daily devotion and it comes right to my email.

Joyce Meyer Ministries is another great resource.  I enjoy watching Joyce on her TV broadcasts.  She also has CD’s that you can buy (or borrow from the library) and listen to when you are driving in your car.  Joyce also has a daily bible reading that you can subscribe to.  She really knows how to convict me!

These are just a small sample of daily devotions to get you started.  Try them out, do a google search for daily devotions and see what pops up.  If you don’t like one, try a different one.  We all have different tastes and opinions, but I’m sure there is a perfect one out there for you!  If you need help, shoot me an email.  I would love to help you out!

Set Time Aside

Make the time that you study or read your bible the same time every day.  Whether its first thing in the morning, or before you go to bed.  This can really get you started and helps you remember that you are not alone, no matter what kind of day you are having/had.  It always amazes me how every single devotion that I have gotten in my inbox pertained to something that I was struggling with that day, and it gave me reminders again that I am not walking alone.  I don’t know about you but I need that reminder constantly.

You don’t have to set your alarm for the crack of dawn (although, you can certainly do that if you need less sleep) I’m not the type of person that can do that (just being honest).  I wish I could.  For me, first thing in the morning is pretty quick.  I spend about 10 minutes reading and praying instead of watching the news (which I do like to do).  My personal goal is to try to increase this time every day.

I also like to dive in right before I fall asleep, although once my head hits the pillow, it’s hard for me to stay awake.  Or maybe, if you have a lunch break at work, or while the kids are napping, this could be a great time as well.  It’s all up to you and what works best for your scheduled.  Take advantage of those quiet moments instead of filling them up with those “noisy” things.

Remember that these tips are only tools to help you get started in your journey.  Don’t beat yourself up if you struggle, and don’t let that hinder you from doing better.  Make time today to really spend time with God.

Forgiveness is Freedom

Forgiveness is Freedom

Forgiveness is something we are called to do by God Himself. Tat doesn’t make it easy or doesn’t tell us how we should begin to forgive someone.  The Lord’s Prayer found in Matthew 6:12 says to forgive our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us.  But that can be the hardest thing we do.  It’s not easy to forgive someone when they’ve caused so much pain and hurt to us.  In fact, you might even think it’s impossible.  There may be something that someone has done to you that is just so unspeakable and you feel that you could never forgive that person.  But what does that do to you?  It causes you to hang on to that pain and constantly be reminded how much you were hurt.

The Unthinkable

In the book, Forgiven: The Amish School Shooting, A Mother’s Love and a Story of Remarkable Grace, by Terri Roberts.  She was the mother of the man who went into an Amish school in Nickel Mine Pennsylvania with a shot gun, sent all the boys out, locked the door, and tied up all the girls and one by one shot them all.  This is unspeakable but somehow the Amish community forgave him for what he did to these children. This Amish community was heart broken beyond words. But, because of their faith in God and their trust for Him, they forgave this man that took their daughters away.

Forgiveness is a choice and we must choose it.  Think of it this way.  When we are angry at someone because they’ve hurt us, we can hold onto to that anger until it makes our blood boil, to the point that it’s all we think about.  We think about how we will get even, or never speak to that person again.  We might even try to retaliate instantly.  After all, they hurt you, why not hurt them back?  You might even think that it would make you feel better.  But it won’t.  It will only perpetuate the anger.  You will never be able to move on and no matter how much you think you are over it, you will never be over it.

In Charles Stanley’s book, Landmines in the Path of the Believer, he writes: “We are to forgive so that we may enjoy God’s goodness without feeling the weight of anger burning deep within our hearts. Forgiveness does not mean we recant the fact that what happened to us was wrong. Instead, we roll our burdens onto the Lord and allow Him to carry them for us.”

Let’s look at what the Bible says about forgiveness

In Matthew 6:14-15 it says: For if you forgive others for their transgressions, your heavenly Father will also forgive you.  But if you do not forgive others, then your Father will not forgive your transgressions. (NASB).   We all want to be forgiven by our Father (or maybe you don’t, in which case, you should keep reading). And Jesus says we MUST forgive often in Matthew 18:21-22 Then Peter came and said to Him, “Lord, how often shall my brother sin against me and I forgive him?  Up to seven times?” Jesus said to him, “I do not say to you, up to seven times, but up to seventy times seven.” (NASB)

This is were a lot of us get stuck.  Seventy times seven, lets do the math, that’s 490 times!!  Are we really supposed to keep count?  I believe what Jesus meant was that we need to forgive with the grace that God forgives us over and over and over again.  We’re talking 1000’s of times!  I don’t think anyone is going to say “ok, you sinned against me 491 times and now I’m done…I don’t have to forgive you anymore”.  What Jesus is really saying is that it doesn’t matter how many times someone has hurt you, you should always forgive them.

Now, does that mean they always deserve our forgiveness?  No, but that’s what grace is all about.  God gives us grace each and every day of our lives.  He gives me grace when I say, “Lord, I’m not going to talk about people in a negative manner today”, and then BAM, someone makes me mad and I express my anger to another friend, and guess what that is?  Sin.  UN-forgiveness.  But, I am so grateful that God gives me grace.

Forgiveness is a choice and it can be so freeing, but it is not easy.  I urge you today to ask God to forgive you for your sins and ask him to show you who you need to forgive. And then let Him carry the burden for you.

Sweater Pillow

Sweater Pillow

I saw this on Pinterest.com and absolutely loved it.  I immediately searched through my drawers to find an old sweater (and trust me, I have many clothes that I don’t wear anymore for whatever reason, but just have trouble getting rid of…who’s with me?).

The first one I found was this very lovely cream one.  The only problem was (according to the pattern) it had buttons at the top and I was afraid it wouldn’t work.  But you know me, or maybe you don’t quite yet, but I gave it a whirl.  Worse case scenario is I would have to throw the sweater away…darn.

I laid out my pillow on top of the sweater and just got an idea of how big I needed.  I cut the sweater to 1 inch bigger than the pillow to allow for seams.  I wanted it to fit tight though, so no more than an inch.

I then turned it inside out to sew along the three sides (using a half inch seam allowance).  Turn it right side out and insert your pillow.  Now is the tricky part.  I didn’t fuss about my seam, but you experts out there could put a zipper in.  that would make it easy to wash and change out if you like.  I’m not a seamstress and believe it or not, I have never sewed a zipper in ANYTHING!

The next step, I took my fingers and pressed the seam together so that I could just sew a straight line.  This wasn’t too hard and I made sure that the seam was on the bottom of my pillow so it would hide it when on the couch or chair.

Viola!  Finished!  It took me maybe 20 minutes to make this adorable pillow from start to finish.  I absolutely love it and I WILL be making more!  There’s just something about pillows that make my home feel comfy and cozy.

Fruit Infused Water with Essential Oils

Fruit Infused Water with Essential Oils

This drink is so delicious that I drank a few pitchers of it in just a couple of days!  And it’s so easy to make.

Ingredients:

Strawberries (about 3)

1 lemon

1 lime

3 drops of Orange essential oils

3 drops of Lemon essential oils

3 drops of Grapefruit essential oils

1 drop of Peppermint essential oils

filtered water

Cut up your strawberries in half and slice the lemon and lime into thin slices.

 

Add your Essential Oils.

Then fill the pitcher with filtered water.

and enjoy!

Don’t throw the fruit away when the water is gone, simply fill it up again and enjoy another pitcher.

This is a great refreshing drink that has essential oils to boost your body systems.  Orange essential oil is good for your digestive and immune system, emotional balance and skin.  Lemon essential oil is good for digestive and immune and respiratory systems.  Grapefruit essential oil is good for the cardiovascular system.  Peppermint essential oil is good for your digestive system, nervous system and respiratory systems.

 

Blueberry Muffins

Blueberry Muffins

This week, I’ve been sick.  Sick with a cold and sinus junk.  I can’t complain though because it was just that…a cold…stuffy nose, headache, chills and a very slight cough.  I was extremely lucky however, because my husband had the same thing (he was so kind to share it with me), only his lasted weeks.  He ended up going to the doctor and getting a prescription for an antibiotic for a sinus infection.  Mine was very mild.  However, I did not feel like doing anything that involved activity.  Watching TV and movies  all day was just perfect!

I don’t know about the rest of you, but when I am recovering from an illness, I get this strong urge to bake and cook!  It may be the only time I have these urges.  Other times I have to force myself.  Now, I’m not the greatest cook and I don’t claim to be, but I still love it just the same.

This morning I woke up feeling so much better with nothing to do, so I dug out my cookbook and opened my fridge to see what I’ve got to work with.

Blueberries!

I had bought a container of blueberries at the market last week and because I have not been feeling well, I did not eat much of them.  What a shame because I hear blueberries are extremely good for you.

One of my pet peeves (and there are so many) is throwing away food because it spoiled.  I CAN’T STAND IT!  When you work hard for your money and buy food that is getting so expensive (especially healthy food), the last thing I want to do is throw it away!  It’s such a waste!  And I hate waste!

I dig out my blueberries, flour, sugar, oil, butter, baking soda and eggs and get started.

Here is the recipe

1 egg

3/4 cup milk (I used fat free organic)

1/2 cup vegetable oil

2 cups flour (again, organic)

1/3 cup sugar (organic)

3 tsp baking powder

1 tsp salt

1 cup fresh blueberries or 3/4 cup frozen (drained)

 

Heat oven to 400 degrees.  Grease bottom of muffin pans.  (another one of my pet peeves is PAM – I use real butter).   If you like PAM, that’s great!  I just can’t wrap my head around the idea of it.  As long as my hands are clean, I don’t mind getting them dirty, so lather up that butter and wipe it on the muffin tins.

Stir all ingredients in order of listed until flour is moist (batter will be lumpy) Fill muffin pans 3/4 full.  Bake until golden brown, about 20 minutes.  This recipe makes about 1 dozen.

The beauty of this recipe is you can add any fruit to it!

If you add apples, stir in 1 medium apple, pared and chopped and 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon.  Substitute packed brown sugar for the sugar.

Who doesn’t have brown bananas laying around?  Don’t throw them away!  EVER! Decrease milk to 1/3 cup; stir in 1 cup mashed bananas (2 to 3 medium).  Substitute packed brown sugar for the sugar.

Cranberry Orange would be great too!  Although, I have to admit, I usually don’t have cranberries laying around because I don’t particular like them.  I do like them in recipes though so I would just have to go out and buy them.

Try other things and just have fun with it and enjoy!

Here’s another great idea once you muffins are made and you want to enjoy them hot.

Cut your muffin in half (top to bottom) with a fork (like an English muffin).

Add some butter to a small frying pan.

Place your muffin in the frying pan (on medium heat) and fry for several minutes.

 

And enjoy!!  So yummy!!

Leave me a comment and let me know your favorite way of eating your muffin!  I’d love to hear more ideas!

Radically Devoted to eating delicious food.