Balanced Life | The Clean Sweep | Pt. 1: Environment

cleansweep happy

I have recently dived back into health coaching head first and am participating in the IIN immersion program for the 3rd time. While today marks the official start of the program we were provided with a few tasks last week to help us in preparing for immersion. One of the tasks is called The Clean Sweep which was developed by Thomas Leonard. 

So what is the clean sweep? 

Basically the thought is that when you feel balanced/perfect alignment in the four major parts of our lives, environment, well-being, money, and relationships, that we can be more natural energy.  “The Clean Sweep Program, created by Thomas Leonard, consists of 100 items which, when completed, give you the vitality and strength that you want.” You are to answer each of the 100 questions, 25 per category, as truthfully as possible and only answer YES if the statement is virtually always true. The end goal being that you will confidently answer YES to each answer. 

I started this Clean Sweep process years ago but sort of forgot all about it until recently. As I went through the questions this past weekend I thought it would be interesting to actually share my answers with you and to follow up every three-to-six months on how things are going. I guess you could say that these are a bunch of mini goals I have for myself for the next few years. 

So we’ll start of with Environment and i’ll preface this with saying I am not surprised by how many NO’s are in this category. 

  1. My personal files, papers and receipts are neatly filled away. NO. This seems to be a constant struggle at our house and I really want to figure out away to get it under control. 
  2. My car is in excellent condition. NO. I had to laugh when I read this one. Seriously? Who with a toddler and a baby has a perfectly clean car? 
  3. My home is neat and clean. NO. Hangs head in shame. 
  4. My appliances, machinery and equipment work well. YES.
  5. My clothes are all pressed, clean and make me look great. NO. This is another struggle I have had for years, or rather since getting pregnant with Edith. I am working on restocking my wardrobe with clothes that fit and make me feel great. As for laundry – 2 adults + 2 kids + cloth diapering = non-stop laundry. So maybe I’ll be able to answer YES to this when the kids move out? 
  6. My plants and animals are healthy. N/A. One must have plants and animals to properly answer this question. 
  7. My bed/bedroom lets me have the best sleep possible. NO.This is one of those grey area statements so I decided to go with NO. Our sleeping is less than ideal but we have two young children. 
  8. I live in a home that I love. (Big Fat) NO.
  9. I surround myself with beautiful things. NO. I am so sad to say no to this answer and I really wish we had more beautiful things or at least things that I think are beautiful. 
  10. I live in the geographic area of my choice. NO. Yes and no. I love living in the PNW and Portland area but the keyword right now is area. We need to move (back) to the neighborhood we love or somewhere near it #2016. 
  11. There is ample and healthy lighting around me. NO.
  12. I consistently have adequate time, space and freedom in my life. HAHAHAHAHA. NO.
  13. I am not damaged by my environment. NO. So I said no to this one because not loving our home, neighborhood and just feeling blah makes me feel a bit damaged. 
  14. I am not tolerating anything about my home or work environment. NO. ALL I AM DOING IS TOLERATING.  
  15. My work environment is productive and inspiring. NO. We have failed at really putting our office area together #GOALS and right now it’s hard to be productive with babies hanging on you but instead of getting frustrated 90% of the time I embrace the time with them and try not to stress. 
  16. I recycle. YES.
  17. I use non-ozone depleting products. YES.
  18. My hair is the way I want it. YES. This took me years to actually say YES to but I finally am getting my hair done every six weeks! 
  19. I surround myself with music which makes my life more enjoyable. YES.This was one of my mini goals for March and whoot whoot I am succeeding. P.S. you can follow my March playlist over on Spotify
  20. My bed is made daily. NO. Umm….
  21. I don’t injure myself, fall or bump into things. NO. I found this statement strange but I guess I have to go with NO. 
  22. People feel comfortable in my home. NO. Ummm? I guess I would say NO just because I don’t always feel comfortable here? Would someone actually tell you? 
  23. I drink purified water. YES.
  24. I have nothing around the house or in storage that I do not need. NO. This is a huge goal of ours for 2015 – declutter and not just declutter but minimize our things. 
  25. I am consistently early or easily on time.  NO. I miss being able to answer YES to this statement. 

Total: 18 NO.YES. 1 N/A.

This section of The Clean Sweep is pretty soul crushing actually. After completing it I was like so much to do to turn these NO’s into YES’ and I really would like to have 80% of them be YES’ by the end of the year. I would say there will be a few big and little goals for April that stem out of these results. 

Have you/are you participating in The Clean Sweep? What are your results to this first category? Any surprises? 

Giveaway | Caitlin’s Super Natural

Caitlin's Super NaturalDeodorant’s are often classified as one of those TMI topics but let’s all be real for a moment we all perspire and unless you are one of the lucky ones most of us tend to start to stink without the use of deodorant. Since without deodorant  I personal start to smell a bit offensive I have to use it and I am always on the lookout for really great natural deodorants because for me it’s really important to use products that aren’t filled with heavy metals, chemicals and other toxic ingredients. The problem is that there aren’t a lot of natural deodorants that really do the job of warding off the offensive smell.

If you read my February favorites you know that I have been loving Caitlin’s Super Natural Deodorant. I talked all about why I love it so head on over to this post to read more because this post is all about how you can win this set of three deodorants yourself. First here are some reasons to love Caitlin’s Super Natural deodorants: 

Caitlin's Super Natural

Giveaway: One winner. Must be a US Resident. 
a Rafflecopter giveaway

P.S. Little Rock, AR friends you can now find Caitlin’s Super Natural at your local store! Friends who shop at Whole Foods if you’d like to see Caitlin’s Super Natural at your store then next time you’re in request that they sell it there! 

Disclaimer: Caitlin’s Super Natural sent me these three 2-oz samples to try. I was under no obligation to post a positive review and I received no further compensation. I simply love this deodorant and I am thrilled to share it with you. 

Haul | Organics To You Box 3.2.15

Organics To You Box 1Organics To You Box greens Organics To You Box veg box Organics To You Box baby add on Organics To You Box  add onsOrganics To You Box mini meOrganics To You Box edith greens

Disclaimer: This is in no way a sponsored post. We purchase our weekly box with our own money and choose to share it with you just for fun.

It’s time for another organics delivery box haul! Back in January I blogged our first Organics To You box (see post here) of the year so I thought I might follow up with how things are going. First off Organics To You is a local Portland area organic produce subscription box that is delivered straight to your front door. They have a variety of different boxes based on your needs as well as additional produce and (limited) grocery items.

If you remember we started off with the small bin and baby add-on. Since then we have gone with the large bin but due to too much fruit (one can only eat so many pears, apples & kiwi) we skipped last week and this week went with the all veggie box  and the baby add-on. We also sometimes add grocery items to our order such as Papa G’s tofu or a bar of chocolate or loaf of bread; this week we went with blue corn tortillas and pinto beans.

This week we received in all veggie box ($36): 

  • 1# Tomatoes: Mex.
  • 4-5oz. Bulk Spinach: Local, farm direct
  • 2# Potatoes: Local, farm direct
  • 1 Bunch Spring Green Onions: Local, farm direct
  • 6oz. Shitaki Mushrooms: Local, farm direct
  • 1 Bunch Broccoli: Cali’
  • 1 Bunch Celery: Cali’
  • 1 Bunch Lacinato Kale: Cali’
  • 2 Yellow Onions: Local
  • 1 Garlic: Cali’
  • 8oz. Brussels Sprouts: Mex. Missing from our box and no substitute (contacted them)
  • 1# Beets: Local
  • 1# Rutabaga: Local

In our Baby Add-On ($15):

  • 1 Mango
  • 2 Pink Lady Apples
  • 2 Fuji Apples (both were super bruised – disappointed)
  • 4 Pears
  • 3 Kiwi
  • 6 Bananas
  • 2lbs Sweet Potatoes

Grocery Add-On’s ($9.50):

  • Blue Corn Tortillas
  • Pinto Beans

Overall I am mostly happy with your box this week with exception of brussels and apples. Hoping that maybe they will send replacements next week. 

Goal: Share recipes next week after I cook up these veggies!

Have you ever tried a produce delivery service? 

 

Unboxing: Goodebox December 2014

goodebox: December '14

I know I am a little late on the subscription box train but I just have really been getting into them lately. I love having the opportunity to try new products I have never heard of or products that I have been interested in but maybe would have never tried if they didn’t come in my box. This whole subscription box love really started when I decided to start focusing on myself and putting a little more time and energy into my skincare (or rather start having a skincare routine) and beauty routine. I am going to do a more in-depth post on this so if you have any questions please leave them in the comments. 

Anyways on to Goodebox! Goodebox is a Portland based subscription box company that curates boxes filled with healthy beauty products, non-toxic cosmetics, natural cosmetics and personal care products with the occasional natural and organic health and wellness products. Their membership plan includes monthly, bi-monthly and multi-month subscription plans. The cost per box is $19/month and the cost can go as low as $17/month if you do a multi-month subscription. You fill out a personalized profile and then you receive your box filled with 4-6 trial sizes. But first you should probably decide if Goodebox is right for you –> see here.  

I was thrilled when I had the opportunity to check the December and January Boxes (January unboxing to come). This Goodebox is the perfect fit for me because I am passionate about (trying) to clean up my beauty products and I am excited to receive not only makeup products but skincare and haircare products, supplements and other sustainable living goods. So as you can see a perfect fit for me.

Okay so let’s (finally) get on to the unboxing. I am going to share with you what I received in my box, the value of each item, what I thought of it and after sharing January’s box I’ll tell you my overall impression and whether I would purchase the box. So let’s get to it! 

goodebox: AU NATURALE goodebox: au naturale swatch
Au Naturale Organic Creme Eyeshadow in Palma – Trial Size -$3 Value 

This sample also came with a promo code for 25% off and a free sample of the creme concealer that I was disappointedly was not able to take advantage of because code expired before I received my box. If you did order something from the Au Naturale and used the promo code you also received a free sample of their creme concealer. I have to say I love this eyeshadow and have been using it regularly. It goes on smooth, is pretty highly pigmented and build-able- oh and it’s 100% vegan and natural. I have to say the one thing I am disappointed about is that it didn’t come with the concealer sample because I know at least one other subscription box that had the same sample package from Au Naturale that included both. 

goodebox: AILA
Aila Nail polish in #LIKEABOSS – Full Size – $17 Value

If you have been following me on Instagram then you know how much I love this nail polish from Aila and BeauTeaBar.com. I have to say I just love the formula, the color and the name – – on that note Neil was like it’s not like you to #LIKEABOSS on Instagram and I had to explain to him it’s the name of this beautiful nail polish. I have to say I would love to own a few more colors from Aila; they make a really great nail polish. 

goodebox: balancedguru SCRUBME nice-and-gritty 
Balanced Guru Scrub Me Crazy -Trial Size- $4.40 value

I have to say I am kind of sad to talk about this product from Balanced Guru. While it was a good sized sample and the company is a fantastic company I just didn’t love the smell of this body scrub. It wasn’t that it didn’t work but the smell was just not right for me. I can’t even explain it but one use left my skin feeling smooth (a good thing) but I was too turned off by the smell to use it again (whomp). 

goodebox: ecojot

Ecojot Mini Notebook -Trial Size – $4.25 Value

This little notebook from Ecojot is so cute and I really love it. If you know me you know how much I LOVE notebooks so I was excited to find this in my box. However the thing is I think my love of notebooks has rubbed off on Edith and she decided that since it was just her size that she was going to take over the notebook. 

goodebox: SHEATERRA ORGANICS - BOURBON VANILLA WHIPPED SHEA BUTTER

SheaTerra Organics- Extreme Body Cre’me in Bourbon Vanilla -Trial Size – $2 value

I was as little unsure of this SheaTerra lotion at first because it is just so thick but once you take a little out and work it between your hands it starts to warm up and goes on to the skin super smooth. It is really hydrating and the smell is so good, not too sweet and not too overpowering but still really nice. I carry this around in the diaper bag with me so I always have some nourishing lotion on hand. 

goodebox: december cards

Total Value: $30.65

I would say that the total value is pretty good considering the box costs $19. The nail polish alone basically made this box worth it not only because it’s a full sized product retailing for $17 but because it is simple amazing. Overall I really liked everything in this box with the exception of the scrub. I actually am adding Au Naturale to my list of brands to check out when I am in need of new makeup products and Aila when I am in the mood for a new nail color. 

What do you think of subscription boxes? Have you tried Goodebox? Do you think you’d like to?

I received this box from Goodebox as a sample in exchange for my honest review. No other compensation was provided. 

Learning to Commit to Myself

Random photo for fun

Random photo for fun


I have a problem with following through with things. Not all things rather goals or challenges I set up for myself. I just can’t commit to myself .I don’t know what it is but when it comes to committing to myself I start a task and tend to lose steam about 25% of the way in and by the half way point I give up. At least I can say that I follow through 90% of the time (hey I’m only human) to commitments that I have to others.    

I finally came to terms with this a few months ago and have been making an honest effort to follow through. The first challenge I had for myself was my DietBet* challenge. I did this because I wanted to get myself back on a healthy path. I knew I couldn’t lose the 4% body weight  healthfully while nursing but I did know that I could get myself into a better place and I did it. I followed through and while I didn’t see a big drop in the numbers I did in the way clothes fit.

My second challenge to myself has been to participate in the #Elf4Health challenge this month. I love having the connection with other participants and my own elf and I have committed to giving daily updates on my Facebook page regarding each of the tasks. This has been such a great challenge to participate in and I’m so glad I opted in and have followed through. I have made more time for myself, focused more directly on my health and fitness and have made connections with others. This challenge is not over but with only a few days left I can say that I already know that this is a success.

My third challenge is one that I did because Neil decided he wanted to do a juice til 4 cleanse. Now I did not juice til 4 with him due to the negative side effects that a cleanse can have while nursing but I did agree to challenge myself to increase the amount of fruits and vegetables I ate and have no coffee, gluten, processed foods, or alcohol for four days with him. I did it! But even more notable is that HE DID IT! My husband spent the last 4 days doing a juice til 4 cleanse and I have never been so proud of him, okay maybe I have but still this is huge, if you know my husband you might know his will power to pass up free treats is low and he is notorious for being one of those “well I worked out so..” type do people and yet he did his. 100% committed did it. He feels great, isn’t craving the crap that he was and just overall is feeling like the restart button has been pushed. I feel better too and just like him cut the cravings for processed food and sweets. 

What Have I Learned? Committing to myself feels good. I have been feeling successful and healthier both mentally and physically. That being said I am thinking that monthly challenges for myself might be a good thing to try. I have done this in the past and they have helped me out a lot but I also have learned that I do this better when I can do it with others. So that being said who wants to take on some monthly challenges with me? I am thinking starting January doing a monthly health or fitness challenge would be fun. I know that incentives help so I am thinking a giveaway at the end of each challenge for those who finish a challenge might be a fun addition. That being said who is interested and what kinds of challenges would you want to participate in? 

*For full disclosure I made $0 off the entire game after deducting Neil’s entry into the game. 

BODY AFTER BABY | Skin Care Products

mamamio

I have always been interested in skin care products and make up but I really have never taken anytime to learn more and try products. I basically only use a shampoo/body wash combo, conditioner, deodorant (sometimes- hey just being honest) and when my skin is really dried out I might use a lotion but usually I just end up using a sample when I’m out at a store. I also have a little bit of make up but rarely wear it.

I know from the list above it would seem that I don’t really care about taking care of my skin and hair or taking time to put myself together.  The thing is I DO want to take better care of hair and skin and look more put together but I honestly haven’t wanted to spend the money to invest in it, especially when I feel like I don’t know where to start. That’s where Mamamio Skincare comes in; they generously sent me a variety of samples of their pregnancy/postpartum skincare products and I’m ready to take on the challenge of using them.

As part of my Body After Baby journey I really want to take back myself. I want to not only feel healthy but I want to look healthy and put together. I know that being a mom doesn’t mean I have to look like a slob and that doing a few simple things for myself every day like washing my face (yeah I’m terrible and only wash my face in the shower which is like 3-4 days per week), put on a little lotion and/or body oil and also put on a little bit of make up (don’t worry I’m not going to crazy I’m talking just a little foundation, blush, mascara and lip gloss) is going to make me feel better. I think it will also make me feel more productive during the day and motivated to keep taking care of myself.

Today was the first day I used any of the Mamamio Skincare products and after washing my face, putting on some of the Tummy Rub Oil and Goodbye Stretch Mark Lotion I am already feeling a little better and I haven’t even gotten dressed yet.  I need to remind myself that I do have 5-10 minutes per day to do a few little things like this for myself. If I feel good then I can be more focused and productive during the day and that’s better for me, my children and my husband. So I am here to say that I am challenging myself to 30 days of using these products and I will report back at the end of the month about how I feel. Also just for fun I’ll be doing a little giveaway of a few Mamamio Skincare products over on Naturally Family; you can check out the giveaway items over on the NF Instagram account. 

What are your favorite skincare products? What is your beauty routine like? Any tips?