Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Music Monday

I would like to thank all of you who participated in sharing your Fall Playlists. It's so fun to share and listen to all the great tunes that are out there to inspire us! 

Without further adieu, here are some Fall Playlists shared by YOU: 

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Topic Tuesday

Topic Tuesday

Staying Hydrated Through The Winter

My favorite seasons are, without a shadow of a doubt, fall & winter. I love the crisp cold air, the leaves exploding with red & gold, the snow, and all of the celebrations that come with it! That said, one of the things that always drives me crazy is how dry my skin gets. I’m sure many of you can relate -- especially since the fall and winter tend to coincide with cold and flu season, so we’re constantly washing our hands, which of course, leaves them dry. I thought it would be fun to share some ways to keep your skin balanced and hydrated throughout the chilly weather months.

Drink Water.

- Sounds simple enough. Right? If you’re anything like I am, you love warm drinks during the winter: tea, coffee, hot cider. Some doctors and specialists say any liquid is good, which is true, but there is ample evidence out there that these particular liquids can also dehydrate us if consumed in large quantities, not to mention add unnecessary calories if we load up our drinks with syrups and creamers. So, what’s the answer? Have one or two of your fav’s and replace the rest with water. It is recommended that we drink between 8 and 10 cups of water a day. Sounds like a lot, but it really works when it comes to keeping your skin at the right level of moisture. If you need the cozy, heat up the water and throw some lemon in there. Your body will thank you!

Don’t Scorch Yourself In The Shower.

- I just read about this in an article on naturalnews.com. Who doesn’t love a warm shower or bath? This is especially a treat in those cold months, but it is so bad for our skin. It ends up removing any moisture and natural oils that our bodies have created, which can lead to dry skin or an overproduction of natural oils to compensate for the oils lost. Turning the temp down just a touch and limiting shower times will ultimately help inspire our bodies to produce the right amount of oils that it needs.


- Most of us do this on a regular basis, but let’s expand on it just a touch. First, use a non-comedogenic moisturizer. This means we need to read the ingredients list on the container. You can also use coconut oil if you prefer the more natural route. I prefer to use Lubriderm or Cetaphil. I have extremely sensitive skin, so I can tell you from first hand experience, they work, and they work well.

- Now, if you're looking for more of a cleansing plus moisturizing routine, let me point you to my friend's at Ashbrook Aesthetic's (http://www.ashbrookbeauty.com). They have an excellent product line through a company called, Obagi. I have used this line before to help with some acne issues, and it was fantastic! They also have non-comdedogenic moisturizers which can assist with certain skin ailments as well as hydrate your epidermis.

- Moisturize before you go to bed. This was another little trick I read on naturalnews.com. Our bodies are pretty amazing, but it’s nice to give them a little help from time to time.  Give it a try and see how your skin thanks you in the morning.

Keep The Temperature In Your House At Normal Level.

- Often times, when we get cold, we crank up the heat in an effort to get warm. It’s actually better for our skin to keep the temp between 68 and 72 and throw on an extra sweater, or cozy up with a blanket. It’s better for our immune systems too. Our bodies are really good at adjusting our internal thermostats to keep our temps at the near 98 degrees that they are supposed to be at. It can be a real shock to our systems to adjust so drastically from the extreme cold to the higher (or lower) temps, thus leaving us more vulnerable to illnesses and removing the moisture from our skin. If we give our systems the time they need to warm up naturally, we are better off doing that.

Maintain A Balanced Diet.

- This is always a tricky one, because fall and winter mean delicious foods; foods that are loaded with sugars, and butters, and oils. Oh, my! We can still indulge without going overboard. Many of us live with the mentality that says “I won’t get to have this again for a long time, so I better get as much as I can now.” The trouble is, we feel horrible after over indulging, and once that ball gets rolling, it’s not easy to get it to stop. It’s not easy to live by the rule “everything in moderation,” but if we consider ourselves, and our bodies worth it, then we should do our best to live by that. Beach Body Inc. has done some great studies on diet and health. One of the things they have shared is that we should be eating 40% protein, 40% carbohydrates, and 20% fat. Keep in mind, those carbohydrates include vegetables and fruit. It’s better to have a heavier helping of complex carbs than to reach for that extra slice of bread. All that said, if we give our bodies the nutrition we need, then it will have the resources to keep our bodies balanced in moisture and our immune systems strong.

Try An Oatmeal Bath.

- I have not personally tried this, but it was another little trick to help dry skin from naturalnews.com. I’ve also read about this in a variety of other places. Pour one cup of raw oats into your bath and enjoy. This would be the most helpful on those days where you just can’t seem to get warm.

Remember, you’re worth having a healthy body, you’re worth having healthy skin, and you’re worth having a brilliant life. We do these things because we know how brilliant and amazing we are, not to stay young or obtain a sense of value purely from our looks. So, have fun with it! Share your stories and tricks with others and help them see that they, too, are valuable enough to live healthy and full lives!

~ Amber

Monday, November 14, 2011

Music Monday

Great Fall Albums

I admit it, I am one of those who cannot listen to Christmas music until after Thanksgiving. Don’t get me wrong, I love Christmas. I love being able to celebrate it for as long as we can, but I also love living in the moment. In this moment the air is starting to chill, the colors are starting to change, and the fog is settling in on the ground. I cannot help but appreciate this moment for what it is. I don’t want to be so excited about Santa, and little baby Jesus, and sharing beautiful gifts with my loved ones that I forget to appreciate the mystery of the seasons changing. That said, here is a short list of some of my absolute favorite albums to listen to through the fall. They help me to relax and enjoy that sweet mystery.

Coldplay - Parachutes
Miles Davis - Kind Of Blue
Sarah Mclachlan - all of her albums...
India.Arie - Voyage To India
David Gray - Greatest Hits
Peter Gabriel - Anything by this man...
Mumford & Sons - Sigh No More
Glen Hansard & Marketa Irglova - Once Soundtrack

There are so many more artists...but that’s the short list. Post your favorite fall artists as comments to this blog post and I will feature your lists up until Thanksgiving, and then we’ll be onto the holiday tunes we’re all anxious for! Like Everly's Fireside album. *wink, wink*

Enjoy! Happy Monday to you!

~ Amber