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Archive for the ‘Favorite Things’ Category

I was talking to Terri from Nature of Beauty and developer of Pit Potion (a natural deodorant I love) about our favorite beauty products. She said if she had to pick one it would be her Clarisonic face brush, and I completely concurred.



It got me thinking of my absolute must-have items.  The things I CANNOT  live without.


I can live without deodorant.  I can make it without mascara.  I don’t need a toothbrush (jk)…


But, I MUST HAVE these 10 things on a daily basis!


1. Lemons


I go through a bag of lemons a week.  I drink warm lemon water in the morning, put lemon juice in my tea, add them to my fresh green juices for flavor and a natural preservative…I just can’t live without them.


2. My Journal


I love going back and reading my creepy dreams.  If dreams are are a gateway to the soul them I am certifiably bonkers.


3. Vitamix


How did I ever blend before I owned this?  I bet I could blend a rock into my smoothies and not tell the difference.


4. Juicer


It’s a love-hate relationship.  If it could just clean itself.


5. Lulu Lemon pants


Otherwise I’d be naked because I wear them most of the day, looking like complete dog’s a$$ with sweat encrusted hair until I finally decided to take a shower about bedtime.   My daughter asks me if I’m going to a party when I wear jeans.


7. Digestive Enzymes


I’ve been using them (relying on them!) more and more as I’ve gotten older. Everything in my body seem to need a little extra help after I turned 39.


8. Clarisonic Skin Care Brush


It’s like a vibrator for your face, people.  It rocks.


9. My Luvsac Bean Bag Chair


It is gigantic and  skwooshy like a love seat-sized marshmallow.  I sometimes curl up on it and take a nap.  Heaven.


10. A cup of hot tea


There is nothing better than wrapping my hands around a warn cup tea and slowly sipping in the flavors. There seems to be tea for my every mood.


What about you? What is ONE thing you COULD NOT live without?


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It has been a while since my camera has been out of its case. Since I am now obsessed with Pinterest, I decided to spend some time today taking photos of some of my favorite things around my house. You can see them here, and on my Pinterest boards if you want to follow me there!


My Favorite Chair



My Favorite Table Art: WoodLucker’s mechanical picture Joy Diver. When you push a small lever, the word “Joy” appears in the coral.



My Favorite Rug



My Favorite Retreat: My Shower! I love seeing the tree’s shadow change through the seasons.



My Favorite Bench



My Favorite Jonathan Adler Lamp



What are some of your favorite things?

Are you on Pinterest? Or should I ask…are you obsessed with Pinterest like me???


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In my 1 year and 9 months of blogging, I have never looked at my site stats for the year’s most viewed posts.


Today, after seeing every blogger I follow posting “year in reviews,” I got peer pressured into it.


What I found was shocking and (potentially) disturbing…


My boys butts blew all my other posts away.


Here are the top three viewed posts of 2011:


1. Pool Boys


A quick post about swim team and its invasion of my life was never meant to be more than a brief look into a day-in-the-life of yours truly. I couldn’t resist taking picture of the three boys in their speedos because their little butts are so cute. Really a sleeper post, who knew it would get almost 4 times the views as the next three top post.


Those poor unsuspecting Googlers trying to get a hot photo of a toned, tanned and greased-up pool boy must have been very disappointed at the scrawny little butts my post provided. I’m just hoping my boy’s backsides aren’t being used as Sandusky’s screen saver.


2. Piranha!


This post was another quick one sent from the rainforest after a piranha fishing expedition. It wasn’t something I would have thought would find its way to thousands of readers, but WordPress picked it up in “Freshly Pressed” and the rest was history. The power of the internet in amazing if you can get your post in the right hands.


3. 2011 Farmers Market Guide


This helpful post is geared for Kansas Citians who want to participate in the local farmer’s markets. Sometimes it is hard to remember where they are located and what days/times they are open, so each year I plan on updating this information for my local readers!


The most viewed posts were interesting to discover, but they were not my favorite to white or to re-read. After careful reflection, here are:


My Top 10 Favorite Posts of 2011


These post weren’t necessarily the most viewed or most commented, but they meant the most to me. They came from my heart and were written to inspire, teach and open up to you.


My promise to you in 2012 is to write more of these posts. To walk hand-n-hand with you on this journey of self-improvement. More than anything, I want to convey to all my readers over this next year that you are perfect, safe, brilliant, loved and not alone.


Thank you for being a part of my life and join me in 2012 for an amazing year!


1. Reincarnation: A Mid-Life Review


2. Carpool Meditation


3. Great Intentions


4. A Skeptics Lent Reflections


5. Hurry is Fear in Disguise


6. I SAY YES (but I mean no)


7. Presently Present


8. Our Mothers…


9. Is Being Right Pissing You Off?


10. An Easy Way to Identify Your Unconscious Thoughts


And for the Ugliest Post of 2011…


Warning: Liver and Gallbladder Cleanse Part 2


Be safe and have an amazing New Year’s Day!


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I have a thing about shoes.


I have a thing about people that give back the the communities that help them succeed.


Put those together and you get UWEZO.



Alexis Hefley spotted these hair-on-hide shoes in a Ugandan market during a visit with her Dallas-based charity, Empower African Children. They were a hit back home, so she helped rebrand the shoe line, now called Uwezo (ooh-WAY-zo), and came up with a business plan to bring them to the States.


That is cool enough alone. I LOVE hearing amazing stories of women who CREATE. Who go beyond the “thought” the “idea” the “hunch” and go for it. (Remember Chooz-y shoes???)


But, Alexis didn’t stop there. The company sends a portion of sales back to Ugandan children through scholarships and reinvesting in their communities.


I WANT TO DO THAT! So, how about you all send my blog all over the world, I’ll figure out a way to make money from it, and give a portion to help WOMEN FOLLOW THEIR DREAMS. There are too many of us out there sitting on talent and mind-blowing ideas that need the encouragement and funds to make it happen.


Until that happens, just buy some shoes and feel good about it 🙂


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It’s that time of year again: teacher’s Christmas gifts! I’m always hunting around for good ideas that are unique, fun and Dalai-like. Here is a great assortment of inexpensive gifts any teacher would love to get!


1. DYI Cookies in a Jar




I have done this super easy DYI project several times: just put your favorite easy recipe, like these Oatmeal Toffee Cookies from Cooking Light, in a 24oz mason jar. Add a bow and the directions (the wet ingredients, oven temp and cooking time) and your teacher has a health(ier!) indulgence when they have eaten all the other Christmas goodies.


2. Eco Friendly Lunch Box



There are many wonderful eco-friendly lunch boxes, like this stainless steel bento box from www.ecolunchboxes.com. Your kid’s teacher can bring their own healthy lunch to school in a safe BPA-free container and no need for sandwich bags!


3. Chemical-Free Hand Sanitizer



Keep your teacher healthy with Clean Well’s patented hand sanitizer formula that kills germs without hurting cuts and drying out the skin like traditional chemical sanitizers do. And, you both can have a laugh at the “dirty kid” reference…especially if they are wiping snotty noses all day.


4. DYI Microwavable Hand Warmers



If you live in colder climates, your teacher will appreciate these hand warmers – especially when they are outside supervising recess. No pattern needed, just fill your shape with things like rice, dry beans, flax seed, buckwheat hulls and/or herbs and essential oils like lavender, cloves, peppermint oil. Check out TipNut for more details.


5. BPA-free Water Bottles













These cute eco-friendly water containers will be a hit. The Copco 24 oz insulated, “stir and sip” cup comes in many colors and make taking sips throughout the day easy. You can find them at Amazon, Target, Walmart, K-Mart, and Bed Bath and Beyond, just to name a few.


I love these Lifefactory glass water bottles wrapped in a cool silicone sleeve for protection. No worries about leaching plastic and the super wide mouth makes it easy to fill. Drugstore.com has a buy one, get the second 1/2 off and free shipping.


6. Natural lotion from Indigo Wild



My go-to lotion because I love the convenient pump. Frankincense and Myrrh is my FAVORITE smell. All of Indigo Wild products are natural and chemical-free, so your teacher can keep their winter hands soft without any of the bad stuff.


7. Essential Oils



Did you know certain essential oils like lavender, chamomile, ylang ylang, rose and mandarin help calm the nervous system by actually changing the brain waves?


Your teacher can use Aura Cacia’s oils as “perfume” on the body or package it with Aura Cacia’s car diffuser. They can even use it in the classroom with an inexpensive vaporizer and watch the kids moods shift!


What is the Dalai Family giving this year? I couldn’t decide, so each teacher is getting a little something different: cookies in a jar, Capco tumblers, LifeFactory water bottles, and a Cleanwell sanitizer basket of goodies.


Some of my friends might be getting the same thing too…if I don’t keep them for myself!


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I know, this isn’t a fashion blog.


I don’t even like to shop for clothes. My favorite invention is the internet because it allows me to try things on in the privacy of my messy closet.  I have skinny mirrors.



What I do love, however, are

  1. smart people that
  2. create something awesome
  3. following their dreams and
  4. their success multiplies into helping others



Chooze shoes are made from all vegan materials (cool, even though I do wear leather and don’t feel bad about it) and 100% of the company’s profits go to anti-poverty programs.


Specifically, 100% go to WOMEN (because we rock, work hard, and raise children) in the form of business loans. When the loans are paid back, the money goes right back in the system, helping other women.



That would be a good enough reason to by an ill-fitting, unfortunate looking pair of kids shoes. But, Chooze has the cutest darn patterns and shapes to chooze from.


Pissy Missy picked purple. There are a couple other patterns on-line I’m aching to buy.



Notice anything unique about these shoes?


The left and the right shoe never match. Some patterns may have circles on one side and flowers on another. Or the same pattern in different colors.


That is so stinking cute.



I want to make something that is amazing and cute that helps the world.


Thinking….


Still thinking…


I guess I’ll just have to buy another pair until it comes to me.



The boxes are from recycled materials and are made for kids to color in.


Um, are these people brilliant?


Mia thinks so. I could hardly keep her out of the pictures.



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We just got back from Napa and as I am writing this, my body is confused why it isn’t drinking wine. Or maybe it is confused because I am still full and intoxicated from dinner two nights ago.


A quick explanation: we spent the weekend in Napa with 16 people, celebrating some 40th birthdays. Namely Dalai Dan and my brother-in-law, Metro Mike.


He carries a man purse and gets his fingernails buffed.


(I’m actually kidding about the buffed nails, but I am certain he secretly longs for a pedicure)


So, back to the weekend and the story of grapes. They look so innocent, hanging on the vine, don’t they? Waiting to alter rational thought patterns after their metamorphosis into the Devil’s brew.





They only way one can keep up the pace of all day tastings is to eat. Lots. Who could blame me? Look at one of our “healthy” meals. I couldn’t get a photo of the Taylor’s Refresher (now named Gott’s Roadside) burger and garlic fries because I ate them too fast.






After a full day of wine tours, I attempted to work off the 12 glasses of wine I consumed in order to get ready for dinner and another round of eating. (They were only “tastings” so surely the total was only 4 hefty glasses)


Meadowood resort has the most amazing hiking trails that I have ever experienced. Who would have expected to get charged by a flock of wild turkeys? I nearly fell down the hill racing after them to get you some sought-after turkey photos. I didn’t want to let you down.


Introducing, your free-range Thanksgiving dinner:






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