Tending to Your Soul

Clarity, Free Spirit, Gentle Change, Hippie Life, Hippy Life, Letting Go, Meditation, Minimalism, Simplicity

Yoga isn’t about executing the poses perfectly or having the best balance. Yoga is connecting with yourself. Yoga is like learning to breathe again, or that moment when you jump out of bed in the morning, rush outside to do the sun salutation, and you’re utterly blinded by how brilliant the world can be. Yoga is taking a moment from your stressful, up-beat life and remembering you have a soul that needs tending to. ~ Unknown

The world truly can be beautiful and brilliant when we take the time to slow down and enjoy it. This has always been so hard for me: just as it is for so many people.

I feel that it is selfish and un-productive if I stop to breathe and do a few stretches.

Since I have began my yoga journey, I see how important it is to take the time to look within yourself. Yoga is not about being a pretzel, it’s about being deliberate. Being deliberate in loving on yourself every day. It’s about letting go of house chores realizing that it’s OK to take a break, get healthy, and press on within. When sticking through yoga, the to-do list shows up in the mind, but you learn to see it, and let it go. You begin to understand that the dishes will still be in the sink when you get done. They will. And it is perfectly fine.

It’s a daily practice of peace.

Whether you do yoga or not, it’s important you find something that allows you to be still, get healthy, and focus on yourself. It could be a walk, a bubble bath, a jog down a trail, gardening, drawing, watching the sunset. If it means you check in with yourself for at least 20 minutes or so to allow your self-worth to come forward: then you have found it! When you find it, do that and do it every day.

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Make Room For What Matters

Clarity, De-Cluttering, Free Spirit, Gentle Change, Hippie Life, Hippy Life, Letting Go, Minimalism, Simplicity

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Over time, our possessions and negligence to our priorities begin to pile up. The mile-high to-do list keeps growing. You never feel fulfilled or caught up. You burn out, become resentful, and think that you are stuck.

It’s human nature to want our homes to be organized, clean, and a complete haven from our busy lives. We want to come home to a refreshing environment where we can relax and enjoy ourselves and our family. If we use consumerism to battle anxiety, or go shopping as a hobby, we end up in debt: which makes us feel guilty. Not only that, we become self-appointed Stuff Managers. We have to organize, store, move, clean, and up-keep our belongings.

Just writing that last paragraph made me out of breath. Whew.

I am giving up being a Stuff Manager.

I want my home to be tidy, minimal, useful, and relaxing. My past spending habits and acquiring nature has taken it’s toll. My home is no longer my haven; it’s a never-ending to do list that exhausts me before I even walk in my door.

My goal is to keep and use what is beautiful and useful. Everything else must go. 

A few minutes ago I dropped off about 5 construction sized garbage bags and several 13 gallon garbage bags full of unused junk to a local donation center.

I left feeling lighter, clearer, and more positive.

Once we realize that what we buy and keep actually owns us, not the other way around, we can begin to carve out, remove, and make room for what really matters in life.

Don’t you just salivate thinking about a clean slate? What would you do with bare walls and clean cabinets?

I certainly wouldn’t go back to the thrift store and just buy something because it was cheap to fill up my walls again: I would display my favorite photos of my family with pride. I wouldn’t buy clothing just because it’s trendy or on sale trying to look like everyone else: I would buy only what fits and what I love. I wouldn’t use shopping to pass the time or to fulfill a void. I wouldn’t keep things just because I felt obligated to.

We don’t live in the past or future, we live in the here and now.

I am not the same person I was 5 years ago, so why am I keeping clothing and things that no longer suit my needs and wants?

Well, I am not anymore. I am living for today and am going to keep and use the things that represent who I am today.

In another 5 years, I am sure I will have to repeat the cycle. And that’s OK. I don’t want to be who I was last year. I want to be who I am today. That’s who I live for.

And, I’m not stocking up for the future, either. I do not need 5,000 paper plates just because they are on sale. I need 1 pack. If I need another pack in the future, I will just go get another pack then.

Living in the moment and for who you are today means letting go of guilt, fear, and worry. We can live lighter and more carefree enjoying what we have an who we are in this moment by keeping and doing the most important things.

That’s the way I will live.

Lucky Vitamin

Essential Oils, Hippy Life, Minimalism, Natural Beauty

I don’t know anyone in my real life that is searching for a more natural, simplistic lifestyle. This is why I love blogging so much and meeting like-minded individuals! It’s such a relief. Normally, when I tell my fam or friends what I am doing I get blank stares or weird comments. I think it’s just because it’s a little different. No harm done.

Anyway, it’s hard to find natural products where I live. I mean, there are holistic stores here and there and a Whole Foods but it’s many miles away and just very inconvenient. The inconvenience has stopped me from living like this, but not any more. This year, my mantra has been ‘no more excuses’ and I am trying my best to live up to it.

I spent over 3 hours this morning searching online for products that I have learned to love so I can order when I want. You may be in the same boat with your location, so I wanted to share.

Website: LuckyVitamin. Use coupon code 5OFF49GS205 (through July 2015) for $5 and you get free shipping on $50 orders.

1. Natural Hair Products: Sure, WalMart has Burt’s Bee’s but did you know their shampoo/conditioner ranks a 4 on the scale of hazards? Look, that’s better than most, but I want the least hazardous rating I can find. I ordered Andalou Naturals shampoo, conditioner, and hair spray. They rank at a 2 on the hazard scale.

2. EWG Skin Deep Database: This database shows the hazard/chemical rating for cosmetics and products. I used this site to determine the safety of Andalou hair products to make my decision.

3. Hemp Hearts: My new fav snack ever. They have them!

4. Ylang Ylang Essential Oil + Glass Spray Bottle: I plan on mixing a little skin moisturizer up with a new essential oil. Supposed to smell sweet and floral and does wonders for stress and it’s an aphrodisiac!

5. Eco Nuts: This is all natural soap nuts that I will be using to wash clothes. One box is equivalent to 100 loads of laundry. It’s safe, sudsy and natural and has been used for centuries! I am so excited!

After researching and trying to order from Amazon, Vitamin Life, and Lucky Vitamin: the Lucky Vitamin got my order.

Vitamin Life didn’t offer free shipping, and neither did Amazon. Amazon was actually going to charge $25 in shipping for the same items.

Lucky Vitaman though? Had all the items I wanted, a $5 off coupon and free shipping since I ordered $50 worth of items.

If you are looking for a convenient place to find your hippy stuff – check it out!

Natural Soap: Reasons Why I Use It

Essential Oils, Free Spirit, Minimalism, Natural Beauty

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That’s our pet goat, Sally. Isn’t she adorbs?

I’ve recently changed a lot of my beauty routines over from conventional to natural:

  • No ‘Poo: I quit using shampoo & conditioner; now it’s water only and natural cleansers
  • Caveman Skincare: I wash my face with water only
  • Make-Up: I only use organic CC cream and mascara {currently transitioning to only organic}

The results are really amazing and I feel much better with my choices. I can let go of my past mistakes, and make better choices moving forward that really benefits my skin, beauty, and life.

I’m also after a simple life where I focus on what truly matters so I can do meaningful work, live peacefully and light, and love with all my heart and soul.

Freeing up my obsession and constant ‘messing-with’ of my hair, make-up, body will allow me to live the passionate, hippyish life that I am after.

Since changing my hair, facial skincare, and make-up routine, it’s only natural that my body soap would be next.

I’ve had horrible, bodily skin my whole life. It’s patchy, ruddy, and has patches of red bumps. It also dries out super fast, but then moisturizer inflames my dry skin even worse. I’ve been diagnosed with dermatitis where dermatologists basically give you a topical ointment and tell you to rub down in it several times a day until it’s gone. Well, it doesn’t go away.

So, since I’ve had success with the natural approach to hair and my face, I switch to an all natural, goat’s milk, soap bar.

It’s amazing.

I’m using Indigo Wild’s Zumbar. It’s made from goat’s milk, natural ingredients, and essential oils. My skin is improving, it’s:

  • Smooth
  • Moisturized
  • Less flaky
  • Fewer red patches

All within a few weeks.

I also use Burt’s Bees Grapefruit body wash in the morning. It has a refreshing scent and sometimes I just want to use my pouf.

It’s really just a simple change and a better choice for overall skincare. The natural soaps smell delicious and are less harsh on the skin – all while cleaning just as well {or better, even} than the chemically-filled ones.

There comes a time when we do the same thing over and over and get the same sucky results. This is the turning point when we can open our mind and try some new things. The natural approach leaves nothing to be lost; only improved.

Caveman Skincare

Free Spirit, Hippy Life, Letting Go, Minimalism, Natural Beauty, Simplicity

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A lot of us have spent so much time and energy on over-the-counter and medicated facial cleanser. We scrub, exfoliate, moisturize; wear clay masks, apply toners and astringent, and pop zits.

If you are like me, then all of this started as a pre-teen when acne was running wild and it was cool to start using beauty products and makeup.

I’m in my thirties and the question still remains:

Why do I still have crazy skin and what can I purchase and do to make it go away?

It seems like I have tried everything imaginable and nothing is making it any better.

I had a turning point after I was using a combination of facial exfoliation, medicated facial wash, charcoal mask and makeup: my face broke out unbelievably and my cheeks turned beet red and very sore.

That’s when I made the decision.

It’s time to do something drastically different.

Then, I stumbled upon the Caveman Regimen in skincare. It really doesn’t get any more simple:

  • Wash your face with water only
  • Or, don’t wash it at all

I opt for the washing my face with water only and a baby soft rag.

After only 3 weeks, my skin has totally cleared up and my oils have regulated. Also, my black and whiteheads came out on their own. I will admit: it was disgusting but so amazing at the same time. After the first week, I looked in the mirror and they all made their way to the surface. If I hadn’t been in such shock, I would have taken a picture because it was wild; gross, but awesome at the same time. I’ve been trying for years to get them all out: biore strips, exfoliation, mashing. Well, they are gone now and haven’t returned. I’m sold and lo and behold my body is doing what it is meant to do. All on it’s own.

Why make the switch?

  • Conventional facial cleansers have chemicals and medication that may simply be way too strong for your face. They also can be stripping you of natural oils causing you to dry out and break out
  • You have tried every product on the market all your life and nothing is working
  • You want to save money. Water only is free!
  • You want to simplify your beauty routine
  • You want clear skin
  • You want to trust your body. The body is a machine made to cleans, heal, and grow all on it’s own. It doesn’t need our help with products. It already knows what to do if we just let go and allow it to do what it’s designed to do.

It’s really not as scary or gross as it sounds. It’s actually very beautiful and skin is allowed to heal naturally – which, is what your body is trying to do in the first place before we take it upon ourselves to slather and scrub it raw.

What to expect after making the switch from conventional to caveman:

  • Few days of transition. My skin was very oily and felt weird for a few days. I wasn’t used to water only and I had the strong desire to go back to my products. But, I held strong and am so glad I did. After a few days (depending on the person), your skin will begin to regulate and you can continue water only washing until it becomes your new norm.
  • You will realize that you have been spending way too much time and money on facial cleansers. Haven’t you heard that companies know that you will have to keep coming back for more? You try it: skin dries out, you buy moisturizer. You break out: you buy acne cream. You use makeup to cover acne: cycle starts over and continues.
  • You simplify your routine. I spend my mornings meditating, working on blog posts, yoga, and sipping coffee instead of slathering makeup on top of makeup to conceal my blemishes. Now, I put a little organic CC cream on my face and do something else.
  • It becomes the norm. After a few weeks, you quit thinking about your face. You don’t reach for cleansers in the bathtub. Oils regulate and skin clears. Ah. So nice.

Am I going to continue with caveman skincare?

Without a doubt.

The results can’t be denied. I wanted:

  • Simplified beauty routine
  • To save money
  • Clear skin

I now have all three.

It’s healthier and my skin is happier. Much, much happier.

Coming Home Blend: Essential Oil DIY

Essential Oils, Free Spirit, Hippy Life, Minimalism, Simplicity

unnamedOne of the best feelings in the world is coming home to a clean, fresh home.

I was away on a weekend trip where I was low key and packed lightly. Being away from my home is fun and makes great memories, but when I get home I am ever so grateful.

Before I leave I make sure:

  • Dishes are clean and put away
  • Toys, clothes, clutter is in their spot
  • Clean sheets are on my bed
  • Fresh towels and bathroom are clean
  • Smelly-goods: that the house smells fabulous upon arrival

Being welcomed by a calm home is peaceful.

The hustle, bustle, and travel time away drains us of our energy. The last thing on our minds when we get home is to have a to-do list. Our minds and body can relax if when we arrive our home is happy and clutter-free.

Coming Home Essential Oil Blend

  • 5 drops lavender
  • 5 drops frankincense
  • 5 drops lemon

This is the blend that I whipped up as soon as I got home. I put it in the diffuser and let my spirit be nourished and relaxed. It was a little woodsy from the frankincense, fresh from the lavender, and clean from the lemon.

My home smelled lovely as I gave into the exhaustion and enjoyed being where my heart is.

Then, I brought out my yoga mat, took deep breaths, and rejuvenated my senses as I parted from the weekend and welcomed the upcoming week.