Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Monday, June 27, 2011

Tamanu Oil for Summer Skin Issues

During the summer many of us have issues with our skin. I want to let you know about an oil that is getting rave reviews.

Tamanu Oil is a South Pacific skin treatment that is amazingly effective for the treatment of many skin conditions. The Tamanu tree only bears fruit once a year and the fruit itself is inedible. However, inside the fruit is a pale-colored nut kernel. When this nut kernel is dried, it turns a deep, chocolate brown and releases a sticky, rich oil. The oil is often extracted from the nut kernels using some form of mechanical cold press. The resulting Tamanu Oil is a rich, luxurious, greenish-amber color.

Scientific studies show that Tamanu Oil is a significant healing agent because of its ability to produce new skin tissue. It also has anti bacterial and anti inflammatory properties that help in healing wounds and injuries. Wearing new sandals or shoes can rub you the wrong way causing blisters. Tamanu Oil helps heal blisters fast and infection free. (Apply a drop or two of the oil directly on your blister and cover with a bandage.) It can also be used on sunburn and some report it works great on acne.

If you are seeking only one solution for all your hair problems then Tamanu Oil is the answer. Women from Polynesia and Fiji are known to have beautiful hair, and the credit for this goes to Tamanu oil. You can use tamanu oil for hair in many ways. Apply the oil and massage your scalp and hair. You can also apply tamanu oil on wet hair just after washing it. In this case, it acts as a moisturizing agent.

Anyone allergic to nuts should always perform a patch test for skin before applying the oil. Apply a small amount of oil on the hand and leave for about 20 minutes. If there is no reaction like itching or redness, you can use it on your hair or skin.

Tamanu Oil is widely available. Here is a site you might want to try.
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Thursday, June 23, 2011

Inflammation and Aging or How did I get to look so old?

Twice now I’ve been asked if my sister is my daughter. Sheesh. I am 10 years older than her but really, do I look like I could be her mother? Am I aging faster than I want to? I decided to look into some of the causes of aging and what I can do to slow it down.

Inflammation, which takes place on a cellular level, is triggered by a wide variety of factors such as the ingestion of toxins (cigarettes), a weakened immune system, excess exposure to ultraviolet radiation, hormonal changes, stress and eating pro-inflammatory foods. Inflammation has been linked to many things that we associate with aging, including wrinkles, arthritis, heart disease, memory loss, Alzheimer’s disease and cancer. Chronic inflammation contributes to the aging process because it floods tissues with free radicals and promotes the destruction of normal cells.

As we age, we become more susceptible to the long-term effects of oxidative stress (a condition where the body basically has too many free radicals) and inflammation on the cellular level. The theory is that antioxidants and other age-defying compounds help cells ward off damage from free radicals and minimize the impact of aging.

Much inflammation can be reduced or prevented by changing our habits and environment or following an inflammation-reducing diet. Some steps to reduce inflammation include:

Better dental hygiene.

Exercise. Regular exercise improves low-grade chronic inflammation.

Weight loss. Obesity appears to increase the overall level of inflammation in the body.

No smoking. Smoking floods your systems with free radicals and irritants, promoting inflammation and other forms of damage.

Avoid Irritating the skin. Unprotected skin exposure to the sun and using cosmetics with harsh chemicals. (Gathered From the Garden's Facial products are so gentle on your skin!)

Anti-inflammatory diet. Reducing or eliminating saturated and trans fat; increasing the intake of omega-3 fat (fish, fish oil, flaxseed oil); increasing consumption of multicolored fresh fruits and vegetables. Also an anti-inflammatory diet should be high in fiber and low-glycemic foods. Add foods such as kale, spinach, dark leafy veggies, legumes and fruits like blueberries and strawberries.

“If we eat large amounts of saturated or trans fatty acids, sugars, and starches, insulin levels surge and trigger an anti-inflammatory response and accelerate the aging process," says dermatologist and best-selling author, Nicholas Perricone, MD. (oh, that darn sugar!)

Another expert says that a healthy diet and lifestyle may improve your health and keep you feeling young but don't expect wrinkles to disappear…"Skin aging is related primarily to genetics and exposure to the sun. If you want to age gracefully, stay out of the sun, use sunscreen, don't smoke, eat a healthy diet, and drink plenty of water”, says Atlanta-based dermatologist, Kenneth Ellner, MD.

I can make smart lifestyle choices like those mention by Dr. Ellner. But I guess  some of those wrinkles I’m just going to blame on genetics. In the meantime, do I need to get a name tag that announces I’m Mary’s SISTER, not her mother?!

4 of my 5 sisters. I'm on the far left, then Nancy, Mary, Lisa and (the baby) Pam. My sister, Annie lives out of state.

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Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Healthy Summer Snacks for Kids

Wednesday is the day I get to have my grandchildren over for the afternoon while mom and dad go do something "grown-up". So when I saw these fruit cones I knew I had to try them. What a great idea for a healthy snack that is also fun!
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Father's Day Poem

Watching my grandchildren grow up way too fast I enjoyed this poem. Thought you would too.

Daddy's Footsteps
author unknown

"Walk a Little slower, Daddy." said a little child so small.
I'm following in your footsteps and I don't want to fall.
Sometimes your steps are very fast, sometimes they're hard to see;
So walk a little slower Daddy, for you are leading me.
Someday when I'm all grown up, You're what I want to be.
Then I will have a little child who'll want to follow me.
And I would want to lead just right, and know that I was true;
So, walk a little slower, Daddy, for I must follow you!!

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Thursday, June 16, 2011

Skin Care for Men

While it’s true that men face a different set of skin care challenges than women do, we all need to take care of our skin. If you want to give your dad some love this Father’s Day, show him how much you care by sharing these simple tips for maintaining a healthy and youthful appearance from the inside out.

Maintain a good daily grooming regimen. Cleanse, exfoliate, tone, and moisturize. For a smooth, close shave, always use hot water, a lubricating shave cream, and finish up with a gentle moisturizer. After shaving apply an aftershave or some kind of toner. The aftershave will soothe nicks and cuts and help to restore the skin’s pH balance. (Gathered’s Facial Toner is great for guys too!)

Stop smoking. Smoking adds wrinkles to your face. Smoking causes blood vessels in the top layers of the skin to constrict, which reduces oxygen levels in the blood and reduces collagen in the skin.

Stay hydrated. Drinking fluids is one of the keys to retaining moisture and maintaining the elasticity of your skin. Avoid carbonated beverages with added sweeteners and go easy on the salt, alcohol and caffeine, all of which can affect your appearance.

Diet Reduce your sugar intake—sugar hastens aging. Add essential fatty acids. They are particularly important to people with inflammatory conditions such as eczema and acne, and also for people with dry skin. Flaxseed and walnut oil and cold water fish contain fatty acids or consider fish oil supplements. Excessively fatty or greasy foods can increase the oiliness of your skin and cause blemishes. Drinking plenty of water and eating a high-fiber balanced diet will help you to maintain a young and glowing skin.

Improve circulation and blood flow to the skin. Use a gentle natural fiber brush to brush your skin before showering (dry brushing) to improve circulation. Exercise at least 15-20 minutes a day. Exercise will do more than simply get your heart rate going. It will clear your pores and increase your metabolism.

Avoid over exposure to the sun.
Sun damage leads to hyperpigmentation (brown spots) which can develop into serious skin disease. Excessive exposure can also exaggerate and thicken fine lines. Use an SPF 15 or higher on all exposed skin, especially on your face.
And finally, stay away from excessive alcohol, fatigue and stress. Not only can these factors lead to premature aging; they also decrease facial circulation making you look older.

 Gathered From the Garden has “Guy Grease”, He-Man Hand Scrub, Tired Tootsie Foot Products and After Shave Lotion to name a few. Our Facial Toner, Love My Face Wash and Moisturizer are great for a man’s skin too.

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Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

The Generosity of Others

Some time ago I entered a contest on a blog to win some free cookies. The baker was going to send her beautiful cookies to a deserving person. I nominated my mom who had raised 10 children and stood by my dad through his many heart surgeries and procedures. I never once heard her complain.

Anyway, the response to the contest was huge and all who were nominated deserved the treats. So the baker asked fellow bakers to help out. That's how I've come to know Kristen at Babcakes Bakery.

She volunteered to send my mom some cookies. The cookies traveled from her bakery in Texas to my mom's home in Minnesota. Opening the box, my mom got a delightful surprise! Here were beautiful individually wrapped cookies. They were just for her.

My mom, being my mom, let my dad try one and then put the rest in the freezer. She was "saving" them. Mom sent a thank you letter to Kristen and happened to mention we was going to be celebrating her 80th birthday soon. Mom also told Kristen that she had stuck the cookies in the freezer. Kristen told mom to eat those cookies that she would send more for her birthday.

So mom did share one or two more. My sister came from FL a week earlier than the party so she got a cookie. My brother-in-law came over to do some repairs so he got a cookie. My hubby stopped in just to visit so he got a cookies. But me? Nope.
Then a few weeks later just as Kristen had promised more cookies arrived. Guess who was there when mom opened the box? Yep, me. Guess who finally got a cookie? Yep, me! There were enough cookies in the box for mom to share with the rest of the family. Her three great-grandchildren really enjoyed them as you can see!
Kristen had asked me what theme or colors we were using for mom's party. We didn't really have a theme (0ver the Hill doesn't really work at 80) but I did tell Kristen that mom is an avid gardener. (She has the greenest thumb I've seen.)So Kristen made the most beautiful flower and butterflies cookies! I can't tell you how much detail was put into them.

All of these treats from the kindness of a stranger. Kristen,you will never know how much joy your cookies brought to my family. Thanks from the bottom of our hearts!!!
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Monday, June 6, 2011

How To Paint French Tip Toenails

Amanda over at Every Creative Endeavor has a fun tutorial on how to do your own French Tip Toenails. I love a good pedicure but what fun (and savings) to be able to do your own nails!

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Sunday, June 5, 2011

10 Ways To Brighten A Summer Day

Grandma's mini-sandbox.

For us here in MN I think summer has finally arrived! We had an exceptionally cool and rainy spring. But hurray--today's high should be about 80 degrees! So with all of the sunshine today it got me thinking of how to brighten your day and that of others. Here are some ideas:

1. Smile. (at everyone and just because- if no one else is around!)
2. Start your day with a workout or some kind of exercise or stretches.
3. Enjoy time with your family.
4. Call a friend. (It's really better than email or a text.)
5. Get outside! Swing in your hammock, garden, bike, go for a walk.
6. Help someone in need. (turn on the news and you will see plenty of others that could use some help! Prayers help those in need too.)
7. Play like you did when you were a child. When was the last time you played hopscotch, hula-hoop, or scooped up sand in the sandbox?
8. Laugh out loud. Tell a good joke. Read the comics.
9. Praise someone. It will make two people happy!
10. Wear bright colors--reflect the glorious colors of nature in summer.

What can you  add to the list?  Let us know what other ways we can brighten our day. I could have added "read and comment on a blog"...or check out Gathered From The Garden's website. Buying and using any of our wonderful products will surely brighten your day!
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