September, 2014
Archive

  • Clutter, part 2 – Ways to Deal with Clutter

    You have most likely heard the saying, “What one person calls clutter another calls a treasure”. So the first step is to figure out what qualifies as clutter to you.  No one can decide this but you.

    Clutter or treasure

     

    To learn how clutter or too many treasures affect    your health check out my previous blog  Clutter – How Our Clutter Affect Our Health

     

     

    WAYS TO DEAL WITH CLUTTER

    There are three ways to change any environment:

    1. by add something to it
    2. to take something out of it
    3. to modify it in some form

    Realizing this go through and figure out what is irritating and distracting to you. Be sure to take a pen and pad with you and ask yourself these questions:

    • What changes need to be made? A few pictures on those blank sterile walls, clean up the pile of magazines, rearrange the furniture so the walkway is easier to maneuver?
    • What needs to be fixed and how?
    • Who might you be able to delegate all or part of the task to? Does it need to be hired out, do it myself or could someone in my household handle it? A key strategy for getting more done is to master the art of delegation. I use the 80% rule – if another person (this includes children) can do the job 80% as well as I can and it isn’t a personal item like going through old photos or bills, then it is delegated.

    Another key strategy is set a time limit and mark that time as an appointment on the calendar.

    Starting small is also a key strategy. Tackle one room or even one bookshelf or drawer at a time. cluttered-drawer

    By the way if you are cleaning out drawers, don’t dump out the whole drawer, it’s just too overwhelming. Instead, take out items that can be thrown away, then things you can donate, don’t belong there, etc.

    When working on a closet, desktop or corner of a room deciding what makes the cut can be tough. It can really be helpful to make a list of parameters which also makes the process go quicker. For instance you might decide:

    • to throw out anything stained or torn
    • donate clothing you haven’t worn for six months

    A key strategy I use is having boxes ready for sorting items into, labeling them:

    boxes cardboardThrow OUT

    Donate

    Not Sure

    Belong Somewhere Else

     

    Give yourself the 60 second or less decision rule. This key strategy will make a big difference. You will be going with your gut decision and more likely making the right choice. If it takes longer than 60 seconds it goes into the ‘Not Sure’ box to be re60 second clockvisited in 6 months, to be resorted again.

    I find that sometimes it is helpful to have a buddy when sorting. They keep you on your task of moving quickly. Besides most activities are more fun when shared with a friend! (People use to actually pay me to help them through this activity so this is also an option if you don’t want to share with a friend.)

    Check out my Blog about MAINTAINING to keep the clutter from returning.

    And how Essential Oils to help you when dealing with clutter HERE

    I’m always up for learning new ways to sort through and organize. Please share in the Comments section below.

    Blessings for a happy living space,

    Kathy

    September 25, 2014 • Essential Oils, Healthy Hints, Mind Managing • Views: 679

  • Clutter – How Our Clutter Affects Our Health

    Living a Healthy Lifestyle involves all areas of our lives. There is actually an intricate relationship between our health and our environments and visa versa. Traditional Chinese Medicine emphasizes the importance of deep cleaning and organizing ones environment for greater health and happiness.

    The spring and fall seasons are the best times for releasing and letting go on all levels. We can gently detoxify our bodies, minds, and spirits, as well as our environments. This prepares us for the new growth that comes with this energetic and vibrant season of Spring. Fall cleaning helps us to clear summer debris, get organized and prepared for more hours spent inside, not to mention the upcoming holidays!

    When we release our excess baggage it allows us to create spaciousness, energy, and inspiration on all levels. In turn this helps our healing potential to increase. Our physical spaces are filled with dozens of minor distractions, such as stacks of unread books, messy drawers, scuff marks on the wall, and closets filled with unused items. For most of us, these things are just annoying, generally insignificant and easily ignored. Rarely do we recognize them for what they really are – potent threats to our productivity, energy, concentration, pocketbook and peace of mind.

    THE EFFECTS OF CLUTTER

    We are all products of our environments, and vice versa, since the environments we create reflects and affects our physical, mental, and emotional health. When life becomes messy or disorderly, our physical as well as mental/emotional health can also get muddled and we become less energetic and less efficient.

    Some of the physical health consequences are:

    • Allergies and asthma worsened from dust, mold, and animal dander
    • Feelings of ‘suffocating,’ or ‘I can’t breathe’ when seeing too much clutter
    • Multiple studies show that when people describe their lives as messy, disorganized, or inefficient, they can experience symptoms of bloating, congestion, inflammation, and poor digestion.
    • If left untreated, these symptoms can progress to more serious health conditions. According to Peter Walsh, who wrote Does This Clutter Make My Butt Look Fat?, clutter may even be making you fat. He noticed an association between the amount of clutter people have and their excess weight. The common denominator is “a life of consumption — too much stuff, too much to eat.’’
    • Just sitting in a cluttered room can create stress, as the clutter provides a great deal of information for the eyes to process.

    Some of the mental consequences are:         

    • Your mind becomes overwhelmed and your senses go into overdHeadacherive to process your surroundings.
    • It creates chronic restlessness because your mind constantly short-circuits giving you the feeling your work will never be “done.”
    • It causes distraction. Instead of focusing on the task at hand, you might even find yourself weighed down with feelings of guilt about your home not looking the way it “should.”
    • Clutter causes wasted time, money and frustration. When your home isn’t in order, you might find yourself more frustrated when you can’t find simple, everyday items crucial to your well-being, like glasses or keys.

    searching-for-lost-things

    • Clutter or disorganization constantly demands your attention draining your energy, decreasing productivity and task performance. This increases your levels of cortisol, the stress hormone. As we have all been repeatedly told, long-term stress contributes to many chronic illnesses. Some of the most common conditions aggravated by chronic stress include:
      • Heart disease
      • Digestive problems
      • Sleep disturbances
      • Obesity
      • Autoimmune diseases
      • Cancer

    Some of the Emotional consequences are:

    • When overwhelmed with “memory” clutter we may have an undue preoccupation with things in the past and can become depressed.
    • Some people becomebunch of lace anxious because they can’t toss out items. They are worrying they might need those items someday.
    • Others may so feel overwhelmed by their physical clutter or disorganization they to go into a state of resignation. This happens when you have a sense that you can’t control the little things life, like quickly finding a stapler when you need it. Sub-consequently you begin telling yourself that you can’t have the bigger things that you want, such as a better car, prestigious job, or loving relationship.

     

    I had so much to share on clutter that it has turned into a 4 part blog. In my next blog I share ways to start clearing through the clutter so you can experience greater peace, happiness and health!

    Kathy

    P.S. Click HERE to learn which essential oils to use while dealing with clutter

    September 24, 2014 • Healthy Hints, Mind Managing • Views: 1646

  • Flourless Brownies

    It may surprise you to know these fourless brownies are made with Black beans. They are a delicious and nutritional, full of fiber and protein compared to traditional chocolate brownies. Don’t be nervous about baking with black beans, they have a mild flavor and are extremely rich and creamy. You can also boost the flavor and health benefits of your brownie with essential oils such as Peppermint, Wild Orange, Cinnamon, Cassia or even Lavender.

    Brownies no wht flr sugar

    BLACK BEAN BROWNIES

    Ingredients:

    • 1 (15 oz) can black beans, drained & rinsed
    • 2 large eggs
    • 1/4 cup cocoa powder (I used Special Dark)
    • 1/2 cup raw honey
    • 1/3 cup organic virgin coconut oil melted (Buy HERE)
    • ½ teaspoon baking powder
    • Pinch of salt
    • 4 drops Cassia essential oil (or Wild Orange, Cinnamon, Peppermint, Lavender)   (purchase essential oils that can be ingested HERE)
    • 2/3 cup chocolate chips, divided (I used Special Dark, could also use carob chips)

    Directions:

    1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
    2. Place all ingredients, except for chocolate chips, in a blender or food processor and blend until smooth.
    3. Pour batter into large bowl and stir in ½ cup chocolate chips.
    4. Pour into greased 8×8-inch pan and top with ¼ cup chocolate chips.
    5. Bake for 30-35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.
    6. Let cool and cut into 24 pieces. Store in refrigerator.

    1 piece = Calories-98.7, Fat-8.7g, Chol.-15.5g, Sod-10mg, Carbs-13g, Fiber-2g, Sugar-8.5g, Protein-2.4g

    NOTES:

    • These brownies freezes well. Great way to have a little something after dinner!
    • I use the oils because it ups the medicinal/nutritional values and flavor for the foods I eat.
    • Not all essential oils are safe to use internally. To learn more and which oils I use click HERE or contact me at Kathy@kathyskinner.com . Even though essential oils are not drugs the FDA has limited us from sharing information here.

    Would love to hear what you think so leave me a comment below.

     

     Some of the Ways Essential Oils

    Might Help to Improve Ones Health

    Cassia

    • Promotes healthy digestion
    • Supports healthy immune function
    • Helps promote circulation
    • Helps soothe sore, achy jointscinnamon-oil

    Cinnamon                

    • Promotes circulation
    • Maintains a healthy immune system
    • Promotes oral health
    • Helps alleviate sore muscles and joints
    • Long used for its internal health benefits

    lavender-essential-oil bottleLavender

    • Widely used for its calming and
    relaxing qualities
    • Soothes occasional skin irritations
    • Helps skin recover quickly
    • Eases muscle tension

    Protective Blend

    • Supports healthy immune function
    • Protects against environmental threats
    • Cleans surfaces
    • Purifies the skin while promoting healthy circulation
    • Energizing, uplifting aroma

    Peppermint

    • Promotes healthy respiratory function and clear breathing
    • Alleviates occasional stomach upset

    Wild Orange              Essential oil with orange peel

    • Powerful cleanser and purifying agent
    • Protects against seasonal and
    environmental threats
    • High in antioxidants
    • Uplifting to the mind and body

    Ask me about use for specific issues by leaving a comment below or EMAIL me for something more private

    Due to the purity of the essential oils I use, very little goes a long way – use very little and then reapply every half hour if you need to.

    Purchase Essential Oils at RETAIL or receive discounts of 25%!  Or email me Kathy@kathyskinner.com for more information.

    Wishing you Blessings for a Wonderful Day!

    Kathy

    NOTE: The advice shared on this site has not been evaluated by the FDA. The products and methods recommended are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any illness or disease, nor is it intended to replace proper medical help. Kindly understand that the products and essential oils work to help to bring the body into balance – thus helping the body’s natural defenses to restore homeostasis.

    September 15, 2014 • Essential Oils, Healthy Hints, Recipes • Views: 1902

  • Surplus Veggie Quick Bread

    The Summer harvesting is upon us! You may have a vegetable garden that’s giving you an abundance of crops or you are enjoying the bounty at your local Farmer’s Market. If you find yourself with a little bit of this and a little bit of that, here is a different way to use them up besides making soup!

    This bread isn’t a sweet bread like most squash quick breads. This morning I had it toasted with a butter substitute I make with Coconut Oil and it was tasty! I found it goes well with a meal or with a spreadable cheese for a snack.

    Remember to be adventuresome and switch out the suggested veggies for the ones you have.

     

    Surplus Veggie Quick Bread       Yield: 1 loaf of 18 slices

    Ingredients:

    • 1 cup Organic Rye Flour
    • 1 cup Organic Whole-wheat Flour
    • ½ cup uncooked Organic oats
    • 3 T. grated Parmesan Cheese
    • 1/4 cup Raw Local Honey
    • ½ tsp. salt
    • 1 tsp. baking powder
    • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
    • 3 eggs
    • 1/2 cup milk
    • 1/2 cup organic virgin coconut oil liquefied
    • 1 cup grated carrot
    • 1 cup grated zucchini
    • 1/3 cup chopped green onions with tops
    • 1/2 cup finely chopped celery with leaves
    • 1 T. each of chopped fresh Thyme, Basil & Oregano
    • 1 drop each of Thyme, Basil & Oregano Essential Oils purchase HERE

    Directions:

    • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
    • Oil & flour standard loaf pan.
    • In large bowl, combine dry ingredients.
    • In separate bowl, beat together eggs, milk and oil.
    • Combine wet inBread_Surplus Veggiesgredients, dry ingredients, and herbs, essential oils and veggies until just moistened.
    • Fill loaf pan and let sit for 10 minutes or so before baking.
    • Bake for 1 hour, or until toothpick inserted comes out clean.
    • Cool briefly, then turn out of pan to cool further.

    1 loaf yields 18 slices Nutrition Per slice: 143 cal, 7.5g total fat, 32mg Chol, 85mg sodium, 16.5g carbs, 2.3g fiber, 5g sugar, 3.5g protein

    NOTES:

    • This bread freezes nicely and travels well so great for sharing which means you just may want to make several loafs at a time.
    • Besides changing out the vegetables you could also change the Herbs and essential oils. If you don’t have the particular essential oil up the fresh herb to 2-3 Tablespoons.
    • I use the oils because it ups the health/nutritional benefits for the bread.
    • Not all essential oils are safe to take internally. To learn more and which essential oils I use, click HERE or Contact me Kathy@kathyskinner.com .

    Leave me a comment below on what changes you made.

     Health Benefits of Essential Oils Used in this Bread

    • Thyme – Provides cleansing and purifying effects for the skin, Broad-spectrum activity
    • Basil – Soothes sore muscles and joints, Assists with clear breathing, Acts as a cooling agent for the skin, Promotes mental alertness, Lessens anxious feelings, Enhances memory function, Reduces stress and tension, Reduces tension when applied to temples and back of neck, Soothes minor irritations, Sharpens focus while studying or reading, Soothes minor skin irritations
    • Oregano Essential Oil bottleOregano – Used as a powerful cleansing and
      purifying agent, Provides immune-enhancing benefits, Supports healthy digestion and respiratory function, Excellent source of antioxidants
    • Ask Me about use for specific health benefits
    • Due to the purity of the essential oils I use,  very little goes a long way – use very little and then reapply every half hour if you need to.

    Purchase Essential Oils at Retail,  or receive DISCOUNTS 25% or Learn more click HERE or email me, Kathy@kathyskinner.com

    Wishing you Blessings for a Wonderful Day!

    Kathy

    NOTE: The advice shared in document has not been evaluated by the FDA. The products and methods recommended are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any illness or disease, nor is it intended to replace proper medical help. Kindly understand that essential oils work to help to bring the body into balance – thus helping the body’s natural defenses to restore homeostasis

    September 10, 2014 • Essential Oils, Recipes • Views: 1318

  • How to Find Out if You Are at a Healthy Weight Without a Scale

    Your belly is actually a better indicator of your health risk than your BMI (Body Mass Index which compares height-to-weight ratio). Get Your BMI HERE

    Having fat around the abdomen or a ‘pot belly’, regardless of your body size, means you are more likely to develop certain obesity-related health conditions. Multiple studies have shown that the distribution of body fat is associated with an increased prevalence of diabetes, hypertension, high cholesterol and cardiovascular disease. They also indicate those whose waist measures 80% of their height lived on average, 17 fewer years.

    measure waist

    A healthy weight for a healthy body is to have your waist be half or less than you height. This means a man measuring 6 feet would want his waist to be less than 36 inches. For a woman standing 5 feet 6 inches, she would want her waist to be less than 33 inches.

     

    The good news is you don’t even need a tape measure or do math calculations to find out if you are at you ideal ratio. Just use a piece of string, rope or even ribbon and follow these steps:   Continue Reading

    September 9, 2014 • Healthy Hints • Views: 725

  • Keep Ants & Spiders Away with a DIY Natural Repellent Spray

    spider web

    While cleaning the other day, it appeared to me that there was an influx of spiders and their webs. Everywhere I turned there seemed to be another one! Now I’m the first to admit that I just do ‘surface’ cleaning most of the time. But give me a break it hadn’t even been a month since I last did a thorough job! I’m not particularly fond of spiders since I react rather intensely from their bites. If they are outside I will pretty much leave them alone, but inside they are fair game. And I’m not talking about a catch and release program.

    After cleaning I decided it was time to do a bit of PREVENTION and as you know, I prefer natural methods whenever possible. I have found a DIY Natural Repellent Spray for ants and spiders made with Peppermint essential oil. It is super easy, way less expensive and non-toxic to people and our furry friends.

    What you Need:

    • 12 drop Peppermint essential oil  (Purchase here)
    • 1/2 teaspoon liquid castile soap  (Get Castile Soap HERE) Regular liquid dish soap doesn’t have the same properties so it won’t cling to surfaces. Plus they are full of toxins, Yuk!
    • 8 ounces of water
    • Glass Spray bottle (Get glass bottle here)  Pure essential oils will break down plastic bottles so it is best to use glass. If you do use a plastic spray bottle then store leftover mixture in a glass container in a cupboard to the light and heat doesn’t get to it.   glass trigger spray bottle

    Directions: 

    • In a glass container, combine water and castile soap
    • Add essential oil stirring or shake to blend
    • REMEMBER to shake bottle frequently when spraying to keep oil mixed with water.
    • Store left overs in an airtight glass container if you use a plastic sprayer

     To Use:

    • Spray along line of ants
    • Spray areas where spiders hide and where spin webs appear

    Did you know that Peppermint Essential Oil has many benefits? Here is a list of some:

    • Promotes oral health
    • Supports overall respiratory health  
    • Soothes tired, sore muscles
    • Alleviates occasional stomach discomfort
    • and you can use it in cooking and baking

    NOTE:  Not all essential oils are equal. To learn more about the differences click HERE or contact me Kathy@kathyskinner.com 

    Want to learn more ways to specifically use Peppermint? Leave a comment below so everyone can learn or if it is a private concern or to make a purchase email me at Kathy@kathskinner.com

    NOTE: The advice shared in document has not been evaluated by the FDA. The products and methods recommended are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any illness or disease, nor is it intended to replace proper medical help. Kindly understand that essential oils work to help to bring the body into balance – thus helping the body’s natural defenses to restore homeostasis

    September 6, 2014 • Essential Oils, Recipes • Views: 1254

  • Celebrating with Berry Lemonade

    Today is Labor Day, officially a day to celebrate the social and economic achievements of American workers. Symbolically, it is the end of summer! It is a day off for many workers giving them time to celebrate that end.  But it just seems to me there are still many warm days left before fall really kicks in. I want to continue enjoying them with summer foods for as long as they last! One way I do that is with a simple to make and healthier version of Lemonade. Cheers!

    strawberry-lemonade

    BERRY LEMONADE

    Recipe makes 48 ounces (6 – 8 ounce servings)

    • Blend 4 cups berries until pureed (my favorite is strawberries)
    • Fill glass jar with 32 oz. cold water
    • Add puree
    • Add juice of ONE fresh Lemon
    • Add 8 drops Lemon essential oil or to taste
    • Add 20 drops liquid stevea or to taste
    • Mix well serve chilled

    Per serving = Calories-32, Fat-0g, Chol.-0g, Sod-0mg, Carbs- 7.4g, Fiber-1g, Sugar-5g, Protein-0g

    ( NOTE: Not all essential oils are of the same quality or can be taken internally (CLICK HERE to learn more about the essential oils I use.

    Lemon Essential Oil not only makes food taste better, it also gives additional health benefits. Lemon is a great detoxing agent.

    More benefits:

    • Cleanses and purifies the air and surfaces
    • Naturally cleanses the body and aids in digestion
    • Supports healthy respiratory function
    • Promotes a positive mood and cognitive ability
    • Helps ward off free radicals with its antioxidant benefits
    • Soothes an irritated throat

    More Uses:

    • To Pep Up: use Lemon Oil on the inside of your forearms 2-3 drops and rub the arms together and inhale.
    • Simple Detox: Put Lemon Oil in your water – use glass or stainless steel – 1-2 drops in 8-12 oz. –cleans some toxins out of the water and will energize and detox you.
    • Diffuse Lemon Oil on a regular basis to purify the air. Mental clarity is enhanced by simply breathing in Lemon Oil that has been diffused.

    Lemon Essential Oil is great for cleaning everything and is an easy fragrance on most people.

    • Cleanse Surfaces: You can add lemon oil to a spray bottle of water and attack what may be living in your range hood, on your tables, counter tops and other surfaces. For some extra chemical-free firepower, a little vinegar is a traditional favorite.
    • Spot-Free Dishes: Add a few drops of lemon oil to your dishwasher soap container with each load. Your dishes will come out looking like new… spot-free!
    • Zest Up Your Sweets:. There are an infinite number of ways lemon oil can add a bit of freshness to your sugary savors: Lemon frosting • Lemon meringue • Sour cream lemon pie • Lemon cakes • Lemon tart glaze • Lemon squares • Lemon cookies • Breathtaking, awe-inspiring lemonade
    • Soothe an Irritated Throat: Adding a couple drops of lemon essential oil to warm water & Honey can change that yucky feeling. Lemon oil naturally cleanses the body and helps ward off free radicals with its antioxidant
      benefits
    • Chase Away the Moody Blues: Whether you choose to diffuse it, inhale directly from the bottle or apply topically, it’s hard to not improve your outlook with lemon oil around!

    Purchase Retail or Wholsale to get a 25% DISCOUNT. Learn more about essential oils HERE or contact me, Kathy@kathyskinner.com

    NOTE: The advice shared in document has not been evaluated by the FDA. The products and methods recommended are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any illness or disease, nor is it intended to replace proper medical help. Kindly understand that essential oils work to help to bring the body into balance – thus helping the body’s natural defenses to restore homeostasis

    September 1, 2014 • Essential Oils, Recipes • Views: 1647