• How You Can Truly Help Someone in Crisis

    “Let me know how I can help.” Chances are you have offered this incredible kindness to friends and family during difficult times.

    But when people are really, *really* struggling, often times the biggest thing you can give is a specific offer of help. More often than not, people in crisis aren’t sure what anyone can do or what kind help they even need.

    Whether it’s a job loss, a terrible diagnosis, a divorce, or some other awful event, there are so many things you can just go ahead and do (without asking) when someone you know is in a difficult time. And none of them are wrong.

    All help helps! Below are a few ideas to help care for and lift a friend or loved one up:

    Grocery gift cards are sometimes better than casseroles. Grocery gift cards are a wonderful way to tell someone that you are thinking of them and offer a concrete form of help, especially if someone is struggling with a job loss.

    As a rule of thumb: Gift cards are better than making a meal unless you are certain the fridge is empty. You can always check in before you cook. A simple phone call: “Hi! Do you have freezer space, or would a grocery card be easier?” Clears things up in a minute.

    Handwrite and mail an actual greeting card. These days we’re digital, but I still think an old-fashioned card, the paper-and-envelope kind, can brighten someone’s day.

    Mail a card with a quick note to someone, or leave it on a co-worker’s desk, and I guarantee they’ll be happy you thought of them. In the card, you can offer to babysit or do yard work. If you’re not that close yet, share your cell number and offer to listen anytime your acquaintance needs to vent.

    Offer a specific outing. Another great way to help is to offer a friend or a family in crisis an outing. When people are going through a crisis, sometimes it is helpful to pull them out of it and into something distracting and fun.
  • Lets leave the earth a better place than which we found

    We’ve cultivated our little spot in the solar system, passed down to us from every generation that came before. As children, and in tandem with our own surrounding culture, we learned to model behavior on how to care for the land, the sea, ourselves and each other.

    Whether we act with care or carelessness, compassion or cruelty, generosity or greed, we have the ability to choose our own individual way of relating with the planet and its inhabitants.

    From our first breath to last, there are infinite opportunities to help influence our environment for the better. We can make a conscious decision to act with intention and care. Let's strive to keep our planet just as lush, diverse and habitable as it's been in our lifetime and for generations to come.
    If you can read this, then you too can do something!
    Below are a few small ways to create a life more in balance with our planet.

    Take a hike. Simply spend time getting outdoors to remember why it’s so important to protect our world.

    Try eating just one plant-based meal per week. The Environmental Defense Fund reported if every American switched out chicken for plant-based foods at 1 meal per week, "the carbon dioxide savings would be equal to taking more than half a million cars off U.S. roads.” Wow.

    Cultivate a small vegetable or flower garden that provides food for you and beneficial insects (like bees) impacted by pesticide use.

    Make your own natural cleaning products! There are an incredible amount of toxic ingredients that we’d do best staying away from.

    Pressed for time and cant make your own? Pick up cleaning and natural body products from a company focused on natural ingredients. These products should contain ingredients we can actually pronounce listed on labels.

    Make the switch to reusable cloth shopping bags. Its a no brainer to stash a few bags in the car for last minute errands.

    Change your light bulbs. Not super exciting but switching to CFL or LED lighting options can
  • Quote of the Day

    "When you feel a peaceful joy, that's when you are near truth."
  • What exactly is the ingredient "Fragrance"??

    Fragrance is literally everywhere. Just walk into your kitchen, laundry or bathroom and read the labels on your soaps, lotions, haircare and cleaning products. Did you find “fragrance” written anywhere? Have you ever thought about what’s exactly is in this mystery ingredient?

    Many companies don’t list what goes into their products containing “fragrance," and it seems so for an interesting reason.

    What Exactly is Fragrance? Fragrance manufacturers use about 3,100 various ingredients in different combinations to formulate scents that attempt to replicate scents found in nature.

    A report by the National Academy of Sciences found 90% of ingredients used to create fragrance are synthetics derived from petroleum. The majority of these haven't been tested for human safety in personal care items. Additionally, the Environmental Working Group noted the average fragrance contains 14 chemicals that aren’t listed on the label. Many are more than casually linked to hormone disruption, allergic reactions and more. Even if a chemical is being phased out of use, it takes years for the government to do so, many times needing assistance from Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). Why is this Allowed? How is this possible, you may wonder. The facts are that fragrance is considered an FDA regulation loophole in personal care products.
    Fragrance is categorized as a "trade secret" under the Fair Package and Labeling Act of 1966 which allows companies not to disclose their formula so it’s not as easily copied by competitors. Unfortunately for us consumers, this also gives brands an opportunity to use cost-effective yet toxic chemicals in their products to make scents that are chemically unrecognizable as found in nature.
  • Does What You Eat Contribute to Eczema Flares?

    Nuts, dairy, eggs, gluten and sugar. What do these foods have in common? They tend to top the “do not eat” list among people with atopic dermatitis, who swear that certain foods can trigger an eczema rash.

    But is there really a correlation between eczema and food allergies? According to Dr. Peter Lio, assistant professor of dermatology and pediatrics at Northwestern University in Chicago, founding director of Chicago Integrative Eczema Center, the answer is yes.

    Food allergies are considered related health condition of atopic dermatitis alongside asthma, allergic rhinitis (hay fever) and depression. Researchers have found that up to 30 percent of people with AD also have food allergies, Lio said.

    For some people, exposure to a single peanut becomes a life-threatening emergency that can lead to anaphylaxis and death without the intervention of an EpiPen.

    For others, eating certain foods like sugar, eggs or dairy won’t necessarily kill them, but causes their skin to erupt in a raging eczema flare. As a result, they believe that if they could just cut certain foods from their diet, such as gluten or dairy, their eczema will go away.

    Unfortunately, said Lio, it’s not that simple. “The No. 1 question my patients ask is ‘Could this be related to food?’ And my response is generally this: ‘I wish it were!’

    “For patients who have dermatitis herpetiformis (the specific skin condition related to Celiac disease caused by a specific reaction to gluten), it’s often very straightforward. If they avoid the gluten, the skin generally stays clear. But we’re not that lucky for eczema patients as they, by definition, don’t have this condition.” Lio said.

    Food allergies vs. food sensitivities
    To better understand the relationship between eczema and diet, it is helpful to know the difference between food allergies vs. food sensitivities or intolerances. A food sensitivity, or food intolerance, occurs when a person has trouble digesting certain foods.
  • The First Moments of the Day

    ach morning when we awake, we have an opportunity to create our day with what inspires us the most.

    The moment during the day when we first open our eyes and come into consciousness is a precious opportunity. It sets the tone for all that comes after it, like the opening scene in a film or novel.

    At this moment, our ability to create the day is at its most powerful, and we can offer ourselves fully to the creative process by filling this moment with whatever inspires us most. It may be that we want to be more generous, or it may be that we want to be more open to beauty in our daily lives. Whatever the case, if we bring this vision into our minds at this very fertile moment, we empower it to be the guiding principle of our day.

    Sometimes we wake up with a mood already seemingly in place, and it's important to give this feeling its due. It can inform us and deepen our awareness to what's going on inside us, as well as around us. As long as we are conscious, we can honor this feeling and also introduce our new affirmation or vision, our conscious offering to the day.

    We may want to decide before going to sleep what we want to bring to the next day. It could be that we want to be more open to whatever comes our way, or summon a particular quality such as confidence. Then again, we may simply call up a feeling that perfectly captures the texture we want our day to have.

    We can reaffirm our vision or affirmation as we shower, get dressed for the day, eat breakfast or commute to the office, as well as recalling it periodically throughout the day. We can write it down and carry it with us on a little slip of paper, if this helps.

    Simply by being aware of those first moments, we set the stage for a more conscious, enlivened experience, and we become active participants in the creation of our lives.
  • Go Smudge Yourself

    Are you interested in smudging your space but aren't sure how? It's easy peasy! All you need is positive intentions, a few minutes of quiet and a smudge bundle (dried plant matter tied together - think sage, palo santo or dried herbs of any kind).

    If you're not into the smoky experience (or allergic) you can also use our smudge spray which works in the same manner to clear stale or negative energy and bring in the good.

    Feel free to create your own practice or smudging ritual or use our little go-to guide below. Happy Smudging!

    How To Smudge
    Self Cleansing
    Invoke spirit with a prayer or mantra.
    Ask that your aura be cleansed from lower vibrations.
    Spray around your aura.
    Repeat as needed or use as a daily ritual before leaving your home.

    Home & Space Clearing
    Invoke spirit with a prayer or mantra of your choice.Ask your guides to assist in removing low vibrational energy from your home. Request that love and abundance fill your home.
    Ring a bell or clap loudly to remove negativity from the home, especially in the corners of your house and in small tight spaces.
    Starting at the front door and walk clockwise spraying your smudge spray in the air.
    Use the power of sound by reciting a mantra, chant or prayer as you spray.
    Once the whole house has been sprayed, give a final prayer offering thanks and gratitude for the blessing and cleansing of your home.
    For morew information or to purchase Sacred Space Smudge Spray visit Meadowlark Botanical.
  • Nature

    So much of the human experience is removed from nature that we tend to forget we're part of the natural world. At birth we're perfectly attuned to nature. Our feelings are an authentic response to the stimulus we encounter. We interact with our environment viscerally, desiring only what is necessary for our survival.

    As months and years pass, however, we discover the sights, sounds, and scents of the synthetic world. Though these often captivate us, the dim memory of our roots remain. When we embrace the notion that human beings are inherently natural, bringing it to the forefront of our day-to-day experiences, we achieve a new level of wellness that boasts nature at its very core.

    We innately understand that our bodies are not composed of plastics or synthetic chemicals and that there's no legitimate reason to consume or expose our bodies to these substances. This knowledge is reinforced each time we find ourselves energized by sweet, fresh air and warm sunlight or awed by the beauty and interconnectedness of the natural world.

    The human body has been blessed with the same physical intuitiveness that all living beings employ instinctively. But because our lives are no longer bound up in nature's rhythms, we must actively seek to reconnect with this formerly innate skill. The process of rediscovering our place in the natural world can be exciting and inspiring, since nothing more is required of us than to delight in nature's wonders, to derive nourishment from natural foods, and to drink deeply of all the wisdom that plants and animals have to share.

    Your own naturalness will reveal itself to you when you look beyond your beliefs, your lifestyle choices, and the attitudes you hold. When these constructs are stripped away, you will see a body and mind that never gave up its relationship to the essence of the natural world from which consciousness sprang.
  • Give Yourself Permission

    You’re allowed to leave any story you don’t find yourself in.
    You’re allowed to leave any story you don’t love yourself in.
    You’re allowed to leave a city that has dimmed your light instead of making you shine brighter, you’re allowed to pack all your bags and start over somewhere else and you’re allowed to redefine the meaning of your life.
    You’re allowed to quit the job you hate even if the world tells you not to and you’re allowed to search for something that makes you look forward to tomorrow and to the rest of your life.
    You’re allowed to leave someone you love if they’re treating you poorly, you’re allowed to put yourself first if you’re settling and you’re allowed to walk away when you’ve tried over and over again but nothing has changed.
    You’re allowed to let toxic friends go, you’re allowed to surround yourself with love, and people who encourage and nurture you. You’re allowed to pick the kind of energy you need in your life.
    You’re allowed to forgive yourself for your biggest and smallest mistakes and you’re allowed to be kind to yourself, you’re allowed to look in the mirror and actually like the person you see.

    You’re allowed to set yourself free from your own expectations.

    We sometimes look at leaving as a bad thing or associate it with giving up or quitting, but sometimes leaving is the best thing you can do for yourself.
  • Friendly Reminder

    A friendly reminder to slow down and breathe.
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