Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Monday, December 28, 2015

Waiting Here for You..Book Review

I spent the days of Advent reading a devotional called Waiting Here For You An Advent Journey of Hope by Louie Giglio. It is a soft-covered purse size book. For each day in Advent there is a Bible reading, a meditation, words of encouragement, sometimes a poem and prayers. 

 Each day’s devotion is very short. A great way to start the day. I found the reflections to be insightful, not preachy and very appropriate for the day’s Scripture passage. The short prayers each day were wonderful ideas to reflect on during the day. The only thing I wasn’t crazy about were the poems. Some were song lyrics and others were old poems that were often kind of hard to read and get something out of. 

 I would recommend this book to anyone wanting to have a meaningful way to start the day during Advent. The photos are lovely and the layout attractive. Perfect for a night stand, a coffee table, a friend, anyone that you would like to gift. I'm keeping mine in a special place so I can read it again next December.

(I have received a copy of this book to review from the Thomas Nelson book company. This opinion is my own.)
post signature
Pin It!

Sunday, December 27, 2015

In the Grip of Winter


     After running outside this week in very old temps I have had to take extra care with my skin. For those of you who like me, live in a cold climate, it is important to keep in mind that you need to adequately protect your skin from the cold weather and to supply moisture in abundance during this time, since artificial climate control robs your skin of a great deal of moisture. 

     Although few of us will suffer frostbite because of cold weather, (although I saw a runner today with nothing on her head or ears and it was about 8 degrees with a wind) it is best to ensure that you are properly clothed, and the addition of a hat or woolen cap will help prevent loss of body heat, since a large portion of heat is lost through the head. But talking about frostbite, if your skin turns splotchy white with red patches around it, and it hurts, then it is time to come in from the cold real quick, because you might then be starting pre-frostbite, which can play havoc with your skin. 

     In beauty care many people think that it is good enough to slather their faces with creams and lotions, yet pay little or no attention to their water intake. Your skin needs water, and for a great looking skin you should make a point to drink enough water every day. 

     On a different note - if you are undertaking any air travel at this time of the year, (lucky you!) also remember to drink lots of fluid, and try to stay off any alcoholic beverages when flying, as it will act as a diuretic and you will lose even more fluid. The cabin air in pressurized aircrafts is very drying, since it contains very little moisture - so also add a good moisturizing cream or lotion when flying.

     Hope you had a magical Christmas!

post signature
Pin It!

Friday, December 18, 2015

Maintaining Your Inner Cheer

Although the holidays are here, and as much as we look forward to them, being "merry" around the clock requires our personal best for all the days of December.     So how do you keep your endurance up from one holiday party to the next?  How do you keep your smile when your Secret Santa at work forgets you?  How do you act graciously while someone grabs the last carton of eggnog right off the shelf before your very eyes?!   

My answer is to treat yourself well!  Pamper yourself!  Don't get caught in the holiday mad rush. Remember what the holiday season is really about: tradition. It could be baking cookies at home together with family or personal rituals to take care of your soul. I start my December days with an early morning run or walk (most days inside) to clear my head and keep a positive attitude. Playing favorite Christmas songs on my piano is a treat just for me.

What can you do to pamper yourself?

post signature
Pin It!

Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Monday, December 14, 2015

Learn From Santa

All I Needed to Know About
Life I learned from Santa 

Encourage people to believe in you. 
 Always remember who's naughty and who's nice. 
 Don't pout. 
 It's as much fun to give as it is to receive. 
 Some days it's ok to feel a little chubby. 
 Make your presents known. 
 Always ask for a little bit more than what you really want. 
 Bright red can make anyone look good. 
 Wear a wide belt and no-one will notice how many pounds you've gained. 
 If you only show up once a year, everyone will think you're very important. 
 Whenever you're at a loss for words, 
 "HO, HO, HO!"
 post signature
Pin It!

Thursday, December 10, 2015

Give Yourself a Foot Massage

   Massaging the feet can bring relaxation to your entire body. Jerry and I like to do this while we are relaxing in front of the tv at night. (Especially after hours of Christmas shopping!)

     Massaging the feet can elevate your mood, relieve stress, and give you an overall sense of well-being. It’s easy to give and receive it in the comfort of your own home. Foot massage is easy to learn and even a quick massage can bring relief and enjoyment. 

*Start by soaking your feet in warm water for about 10 minutes in the bathtub or in a large dishpan. Add your favorite bath salts or oil to the water-it will not only help your feet, but the aroma is soothing. Now, dry your feet completely and apply your favorite body lotion, foot cream or oil to your hands.

*You can begin your massage anywhere on your feet, keeping in mind that you want to cover the entire foot from the tip of your toes to your ankle. Use enough pressure to help the foot muscles relax, but not so much as to cause discomfort. If it tickles (feet can be very sensitive) press harder, but again, not so hard that it hurts. 

*Sit in a comfortable chair and prop your right foot up on your left knee. You should be able to see the bottom of your foot in this position. Rub a little lotion or oil over your whole foot. 

*Wrap your hands around your foot (thumbs will be on the sole and fingers on the top). Holding your foot firmly, start making circular motions with your thumbs. Cover the entire area of the bottom of your foot, working your way from the heel, through the sole, up to the ball of your foot, and finally to your toes. 

*Knead the sole by holding the foot with one hand and making a fist with the other, using moderate pressure. Pay attention to the arch. 

*Squeeze gently each of your toes between your thumb and index finger. Begin with the big toe. Roll the toe between your thumb and forefinger as you slide your fingers down the toe to the end, applying gentle pressure. Gently squeeze the end of each toe. 

*Hold the heel with your left hand and move your foot at the ankle joint so as to loosen it. Rotate the foot clockwise and counterclockwise 3 or 4 times. 

*Wipe off any excess cream or oil with a soft towel.

*Repeat these steps on other foot.

Your feet will thank you!

  post signature
Pin It!

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Wordless Wednesday

We were lucky enough to be in FL for a few days at saw this at the Sunken Gardens in St. signature
Pin It!

Saturday, December 5, 2015

Simplify the Holidays

Here are some ideas to help make your December a month to enjoy, not dread… Simplify your holidays! 

*Give gifts only to those you WANT to 
*Remember you don't' have to do it all.. You don't have to bake cookies, buy for everyone, decorate the house, spend time with all relatives.. UNPLUG and let others take care of you 
*Surround yourself with color and positive things--Poinsettias are bright and beautiful--Find a great CD and play it as loud as it goes * Surround yourself with people and activity 
*Call your treasured friends
*Reconnect with old friends and family
*Ask for hugs. give hugs 
*Change traditions but keep some things the same
*Give a gift from the heart, such as a coupon or letter from you, instead of shopping from a list
*Go to movie after Christmas dinner 
*Give small gifts to those who have supported you
*Visit and volunteer: a children's hospital, a soup kitchen, work with a church in the community 

Taken from an article on the web site post signature
Pin It!

Thursday, December 3, 2015

Anti-Aging Tactics You Should Know

Taken from an article by Yvonne Finn 

Do you want your life story to be a long and joyous one, without having every line written on your face? Of course, we all do! Is there anyone who doesn't want to look as good as they can, for as long as they can?

Here are some ideas you can use to look and feel younger on a daily basis. 

(1) Check your attitude!
How do you feel about life? Is your life going the way you want it to? Do you take responsibility for what you have created, good or bad? How about accepting who you are? Be grateful for what you have, family, friends, a job etc. Then do an assessment of the things you want to change, if any.

(2) Know your nutritional needs!
What you eat has a huge impact on how you look and feel. The foods you eat help make and maintain soft, smooth, glowing skin. Eat fresh fruits and vegetables as snacks, instead of over-processed manufactured "fast foods". Drink lots of water to keep skin hydrated.

(3) Take time outs!
When was the last time you had some fun? A good laugh? If you cannot remember, it's been too long! 
What about pampering? Done anything special for yourself lately? A facial, or manicure? It’s easy to do these at home.  It's the time you spend just focusing on yourself that will make you feel special and cared for.

(4) Grooming is ageless! When did you last update your looks? A new hairstyle or wardrobe is a very effective anti-aging tactic. Subtle changes in hair coloring can make you look years younger. Find skin care that's right for your skin type. Take care of your nails and teeth. Beautiful well cared for hands are a must if you want to appear younger!

**Meaningful beauty is not just smooth skin (which is nice), but it is also an outlook on life, your life. Treat yourself and others with respect. Balance your physical, emotional and spiritual life. Get rest when you need it, and play when you have the opportunity. These are the best anti-aging tactics!! 

post signature
Pin It!

Wednesday, December 2, 2015

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Five Minutes with Jesus

This is a review of 5 Minutes with Jesus (Making Today Matter) by Sheila Walsh. It is a small book of 49 short essays. Each essay is followed by scripture passages that pertain to the essay. It will really only take about 5 minutes for you to read each one. The book is small enough to fit into your purse or carry-on bag if you travel. 

I feel the author didn’t come up with anything new. Many of the essays are about her life and didn’t hit home with me. Her writing style is very average and I don’t feel terribly inspiring. I’ve read works by other authors that I found more interesting and enlightening. I do like the fact that the essays are short. Perfect for reading one a day and doing some reflecting. 

I was disappointed that there is not a table of contents or index. So if you want to go back and find a particular essay you have to page through the book. (I’m not a fan of marking up books or adding flags.)

I was give this book to review. All opinions are my own.

post signature
Pin It!

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Beauty Boosters You Can Start Today

post signatureHave you ever thought about a plan to boost your health and beauty regimens? This list of beauty boosters will help you get on the fast track to looking and feeling good both inside and out. 

Invest in a quality hairbrush

Did you know that a cheap hairbrush could literally tear your hair out? Even the most healthy scalp loses a minimum of thirty hairs a day, so ensure that your hair will stay where it belongs -- on your head -- with a quality brush designed for your hair type. Boar and nylon are the most commonly used bristles in hairbrushes. Natural boar bristles are good for long, normal, fine and damaged hair; while the nylon variety tend to be better for short, coarse or heavily-damaged hair. Look for brushes with widely-spaced rows of bristles, as they glide through the hair more easily. 

 Moisturize your skin every day

Your skin, the largest organ of your entire body, needs special care and attention. Especially in the winter months, skin loses moisture and can easily become dry and flaky. 

Get enough sleep

Not getting the right quantity -- or quality -- of ZZZs can affect your appearance. Without enough rest, your cells don't have a chance to repair themselves, which will make your skin look dull and dry, and age more quickly than it otherwise would. 

 Scrub your way to soft feet

Taking time out for salon pedicures is not always in the budget, time or money wise, so take matters into your own hands... or, in this case, your own feet. Purchase a foot file (it is a bit like a giant nail file) or a pumice stone and use it to scrub any areas of your feet with dry or rough skin once or twice a week. Use the file or stone after a bath or shower -- or in the shower when your feet are wet -- because warm water softens the skin. (I like to moisturize my feet after.)

Make time for you, because you're worth it

Never forget that the most important person in your world is little ol' you. Make time to rest, relax and rejuvenate your mind, body and soul. Promise that once a month you'll plan a special treat, all for you. It might be dinner with a friend, a massage, a good book -- what ever works for you.  Remember that "me time" is the fuel that keeps you going in this hectic world. You have a lot  to do and lots  to be thankful for. When you make yourself a priority in your own life, you and everyone around you will reap the benefits!
Pin It!

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Monday, November 16, 2015

Remedies for Chapped Ski

It’s hard to believe that winter is fast approaching when we’ve had such nice weather the past few weeks! So unusual for Minnesota this time of year and we definitely won't complain! We know it's going to change and so will the condition of our skin. 

Here are some tips to deal with winter skin: 

In winter, use a humidifier or place bowls of water near the heater to counteract the moisture loss created by central heating. 

A healthy diet is essential for healthy skin. Here is where fruits and veggies come in. Vitamin C is required for collagen production; beta-carotene is converted into vitamin A, a substance essential for maintaining skin tissue; vitamin E is vital for skin condition; and vitamin B helps repair the skin. 

Get sufficient sleep as the skin's cellular repair activity is at its optimum during this resting phase. 

Exercise benefits skin as it boosts circulation and encourages blood flow. Regular exercise will nourish and cleanse your skin from within. 

Dry brush skin in the mornings to stimulate circulation and the sebaceous glands. 

At bedtime use a moisturizer on your face and a lotion/moisturizing cream on your hands and feet. Limit the use of soap, because soap dissolves the fats from the skin and takes them away from the surface. 

15 minutes of sun exposure in the early morning or late afternoon is healthy for the skin, and activates the production of vitamin D in the body which, in turn, will promote healthy skin. Here in MN because of the reduced sunlight this time of year a Vitamin D supplement is recommended. 

Half an hour before you take your bath, massage yourself with a bath oil or if taking a shower, apply a bath oil immediately after. Blot yourself dry; do not rub vigorously with a bath towel. 

Wear gloves in cold weather to help prevent chapped hands. (I do this religiously!)

post signature
Pin It!

Friday, November 13, 2015

Calm Your Baby Naturally with Lavender

Grady happily sleeping after a drop of lavender essential oil on his blanket helped calm him down.

Spending time with my new baby grandson has been such a special treat. He is usually a very contented little guy. However, just like most babies he has had some fussy moments. I suggested using a drop of lavender essential oil on his blanket and it calmed him down. So thought I would share some tips on using lavender essential oil to create a more relaxed atmosphere while caring for your baby. 

Massages: Both baby and mom can benefit from a relaxing lavender massage. Mix 1-2 drops of the essential oil with a carrier oil such as sweet almond oil or unscented lotion to create your own massage blend. Lavender is one of the most gentle essential oils and can be used diluted on a baby's skin. (Never use essential oils undiluted!

Baths: A soaking bath with lavender is another wonderful way to relax. Add a few drops of lavender essential oil to the bath water. For baby's bath, use just two drops; for Mom, use five to ten. Mix the essential oil with a little carrier oil before adding to the bath water and swish around in the water before putting baby in. You want to make sure the essential oil blend is well mixed before you put baby in.

In baby's room: Use a diffuser to disperse the scent of lavender essential oil throughout the room during naps and bedtime. Again just a few drops. Diffuse for about 15 minutes then turn the diffuser off. I suggest diffusing before baby naps or sleeps. Don't just limit these to baby's room-- lavender will help you feel more relaxed too. Or make a room spray by a few drops of lavender to water in a spray bottle. Shake before spraying. 

Laundry: Add a few drops of lavender essential oil to the baby's laundry (including the crib sheets), not only for the aromatherapy benefits, but also for the soft, clean aroma it will add to your baby's things. A drop or two on a washcloth added to the dryer works well too.

In the car: Parents are usually excellent multi-taskers, but trying to calm a fussy baby while negotiating traffic is never easy. To help keep peace in the car, sprinkle a drop or two of lavender essential oil onto the baby's car seat or baby’s blanket before traveling. 

*Note that essential oils are extremely concentrated. Please, please always use them diluted. Follow usage directions carefully and keep them tightly closed and out of the reach of children.

  post signature
Pin It!

Thursday, November 12, 2015

Tis the season for…Pumpkins

Pumpkins aren't just for Halloween. Here are some facts and fun beauty recipes using pumpkin. 

Health Benefits Beta carotene - The rich orange color is a give away to the nutrients present in pumpkin. Research shows that people who eat a diet rich in beta-carotene are less likely to develop certain cancers than those who fail to include beta-carotene-rich foods in their diet. 

Loaded with Potassium - The potassium found in pumpkin aids in balancing fluid levels in the body, promotes strong bones, is necessary for energy production, and helps to control blood pressure. 

Zinc - Not only is zinc a major boost for your immune system, it also aids in bone density support for people at risk for osteoporosis. 

High in Fiber - Pumpkin is an excellent source of fiber; one-half cup serving contains 5 grams of fiber. Fiber helps reduce bad cholesterol levels, protect the body against heart disease, control blood sugar levels, promote healthy digestion, and plays a role in weight loss. 

Great on your skin - Pumpkins contain a ton of anti-oxidant vitamins A and C, as well as zinc and alpha-hydroxy-acids which helps to reduce the signs of aging.  Eat the seeds While pumpkin flesh is nutrient-rich, pumpkin seeds also contain essential vitamins and minerals. Pumpkin seeds are a good source of vitamin E, iron, magnesium, potassium, zinc, and are an excellent plant-based source of omega-6 and omega-3 fatty acid. 

 Pumpkin Face and Body Mask 
 Mix together: 
½ cup canned pumpkin
1/4cup white clay 
1T. honey,
2 T. water
1 T. almond oil and 2 tsp. cinnamon 

Apply evenly to your face or anywhere else that you’d like to smooth. Leave on 10 minutes before rinsing. Almond oil moisturizes, clay draws out impurities, honey replenishes collagen and cinnamon improves circulation. 

 Pumpkin Face Scrub 
1 T canned or fresh pureed Pumpkin  
1 T cut oats 
1 T water 
1 t Corn meal  

Directions:  In a small ramekin, mix oats with warm (not hot) water. Let it sit for a minute or so and soak. Mix in the Pumpkin puree, blending well. Add the Corn meal and stir well. 

Apply a small amount at a time to a clean face while scrubbing in circular movements gently. After scrubbing the entire face, leave on for about 5 minutes longer or just until it is almost dry, but not entirely. Gently remove with a warm wash cloth. Moisturize like usual. This amount is enough for the face, neck, chest area and shoulders. Leaves skin silky soft! 

post signature
Pin It!

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Wordless Wednesday

Thank you to all who have served our country--especially my dad, a WWII veteran.

post signature

Pin It!

Thursday, November 5, 2015

Why Should You Exfoliate?

 Exfoliating is like using extremely fine sandpaper on your skin. You are using a mildly abrasive material that buffs away dead skin cells, leaving glowingly healthy skin in its place. Exfoliating has several benefits.

First, old dead skin cells that make your complexion dull are scrubbed off, leaving new fresh skin cells. 

Secondly, after exfoliation, it is easier for skin to absorb moisturizers and other skin treatments. If your complexion is normal to oily, then exfoliating is helpful three to four times a week. For drier skin, exfoliation should only be done one to two times a week maximum. 

You should establish a skincare routine that includes a cleanser, toner and moisturizer. You will keep your skin healthy far longer. 

Exfoliating will help remove the build-up of dead skin cells from your skin, and will reveal the younger and healthier looking skin underneath. 

When exfoliating please take care not to try and scrub your skin to the connective tissue - all you need to do is to gently scrub to remove dead surface cells. Scrubbing your skin with too much vigor and using too abrasive products can irritate your skin, cause damage and leave it open to infections and other problems.

I have dry, mature skin so I usually exfoliate twice a week.

post signature
Pin It!

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Wordless Wednesday

Hoping she wasn't going to fall until he finished photographing her. (Venice, Italy)

post signature
Pin It!

Monday, November 2, 2015

Do You Know the Secrets of Aging Well

 Adapted from 50 Simple Ways to Pamper Yourself, by Stephanie Tourles (Storey Books, 1999). 

Here are 11 wise and simple tips for feeling your healthy best, no matter what your age! 

 1. Do you get enough sleep? Getting plenty of quality, sound sleep allows your body to rest, recharge, repair, and replenish so you’ll be rarin’ to go the next day. 

2. Are you inspired by life? Picking up a new hobby, finding a new challenge, or reading more will stimulate your brain. (Mine has been taking up photography.)

3. Are you a “people person?” When we reach out and try to help someone every day, we feel more engaged with life. I don't think posting on Facebook counts...

4. Do you pace yourself? Scurrying though life can be stressful and aging. When we slow down and become more mindful of our activities, we enjoy them more. 

5. Do you have a companion animal? Studies show that pet owners live healthier, happier, less stressful lives. 

6. Do you hydrate? Dry skin ages prematurely, so using a good moisturizing lotion is always a good idea. So is drinking lots of water every day! 

7. Do you protect your skin from prolonged exposure to the sun? Although studies show that we need 10 minutes of unprotected sun every day, more than that (even with sunscreen) can be damaging. 

8. Do you eat fresh, whole foods? Real, unprocessed food is what our bodies need. Junky empty calories may satisfy a temporary craving, but the whole stuff is what keeps us feeling and looking our best. Strive to "eat the rainbow" everyday. Stock up on fruits and veggies.

9. Do you exercise daily? Keep moving to keep joints flexible, heart healthy, skin glowing, and energy-levels high.  You don't have to be a runner--lots of ways to get in some exercise. Find a friend to help you meet this goal.

10. Do you have a positive attitude? This is probably the single most important determining factor for living a long and happy life. Pollyanna was right: think positive! 

11. Have you simplified your life? Knowing what really matters and putting your time and energy there is a great help for living fully. It’s not the material things that bring true happiness, it’s friends, family, good food, pets, and time spent doing things you most enjoy.

I think most of these are fairly simple to attain. However, for me #5 is probably not going to happen--I am just not a pet person!

  post signature
Pin It!

Friday, October 30, 2015

DIY Body Products

After looking at the DIY masks that Tip Junkie has on her site, I found a few more that sounded  fun to try. I thought I would share them with you. For more fun bath and body recipes go to 

Fruit Salad Facial 
1 Ripe banana 

1 pineapple ring 

3 strawberries 
Mash the fruit together in a bowl or use a food processor. Take the fruit paste and apply it to your face and allow it to soak in for 20-30mins for a soft, refreshed, revived and cleansed facial. This mix will last 2-3 days in the fridge. 

Apple Hair Rinse 
2 cups of water 

2 tbs of apple cider 

1 red apple 
Place all the ingredients into a blender and process, pour the mix into a bottle and apply it to your hair after you shampoo. Allow it to sit a few minutes and then rinse well. Do not apply conditioner. 

This will give your hair a lovely shine!! 

 Monkey Banana Hair Mask 

1 ripe banana 

3 tbs of whole egg mayonaise 

1 tbs of olive oil 
Mix the ingredients together in a bowl and apply to the hair, place a shower cap on and leave for 20-30 mins. 
This hair mask will store for around 1-2 days. Your hair is going to love this Monkey hair mask, the banana soothes your hair and fills it back with potassium and loads of shine. 


Red Wine Sugar Scrub 
5 tbsp raw sugar 

5 tbsp mascavado sugar/ brown sugar 

3-4 tsp honey 

2 tbsp red wine 
 Mix all the above ingredients together in a bowl until sugar turns like a sticky paste form. Mixture is ready to use and can be stored in the fridge for 2 days. The measurement above is enough for a one time usage.

  post signature
Pin It!

The Only Pumpkin Not Chosen For Halloween

post signature
Pin It!

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

This is what happens when there are no live models to shoot. You end up fooling around with paper and a macro lens.
post signature
Pin It!


Related Posts with Thumbnails
Contact Me

Name *
Email *
Subject *
Message *