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Cooking with Essential Flavour

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Flavour and Variety is the Spice of Life!

I’m not sure who said that originally but dang, were they ever right.

I love cooking with flavour.  Spices, herbs and sauces are all a regular part of my daily meals.  I used to think that flavour meant that I had to stock my pantry cupboard with dried herbs and spices, until I was introduced to cooking with doTERRA Essential Oils.

Why Essential Oils can be a Great Choice for use in Cooking

Essential Oils can from all different parts of different plants.  They are distilled from the leaves, flowers, steams, bark, peel and roots.  When you pick a mint leaf from your garden and chew it, the flavour you taste comes from the essential oil.  So when you are using pure essential oils, any plant, herb, or spice you would normally use for you cooking, can be substituted with a few drops of essential oil.

Essential oils are extremely concentrated in flavour.  A little certainly goes a long way.  When substituting essential oils for herbs here is a general rule of thumb:

1 tbsp of dried herbs = 1-2 drops of Essential Oil

1 tsp of fresh herbs = 1-2 drops of Essential Oil

1 tsp Citrus Zest = 1-2 drops of Citrus Essential Oil

Hot oils like Oregano or Cinnamon may only need a swirl of a toothpick to add a punch of flavour.  

These ratios may vary depending on the flavour you would like and how large the dish you are making is.

Safety and Essential Oils with Cooking

It is not recommended that you go to your local health food store and buy just any brand of essential oils for your cooking.  You want to ensure that the bottle indicates you can use it internally (it will have supplement facts right on the bottle) and that your oils are certified, pure, therapeutic-grade essential oils.  doTERRA is the brand I use and recommend.

 Here is a list of the essential oils I use in my cooking:

  • Basil
  • Bergamot
  • Black Pepper
  • Cardamom
  • Cassia
  • Cilantro
  • Cinnamon
  • Clove
  • Coriander
  • Dill
  • Fennel
  • Ginger
  • Grapefruit
  • Lavender
  • Lemon
  • Lemongrass
  • Lime
  • Marjoram
  • Oregano
  • Peppermint
  • Rosemary
  • Spearmint
  • Thyme
  • Wild Orange

Start experimenting!

There are so many flavour options and combinations.

Check back for recipes using my favourite essential oil flavours.

Happy cooking!

~Laura @lauraessentiallyinspired

How I am Overcoming my Addiction to Sugar

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Addiction is a strong word. 

It literally means to consume an item repeatedly, that has rewarding effects on the brain to the point of feeling the need for that item. So sugar is a feel-good food for me.  I LOVE it.  It makes me happy.  And while it may not be as damaging to our bodies as other substances, sugar can have negative effects to our overall health.

If we think about our relationship with food it makes sense.  As babies, our first food is literally sugar (have you ever tasted breastmilk?  Well, it’s basically sweet cream!) That sweet taste becomes associated with comfort and love. We celebrate special occasions and milestones with FOOD! Often sugar filled treats and desserts.  We have been a society that rewards good behaviour with SUGAR! ( I admit to promising my kids ice cream on the way home if they “are good”)  And as a result many of use are addicted to the taste of sweet.

But whats the big deal about sugar anyways?  If you were like me, you were taught in school that the basic form of energy that the body uses is glucose.  Everything you eat, basically gets broken down into this molecule of energy.  So eating sugar is no big deal, right?

Wrong!

Eating foods that contain high amounts of sugar, especially processed sugar, displaces other valuable food nutrients and adds extra calories to your diet, which ultimately leads to weight gain and a whole bunch of other health problems.

Eating foods that contain good sources of protein, fat and complex carbohydrates is key to good health.  PERIOD!  There are no gimmicks here.

Whole foods are BEST!  This simply means, food in their whole, true form.  Veggies, meats, eggs, fruits and whole dairy, all contain amazing sources of all of the nutrients our bodies need to function and stay healthy.

So how am I working on kicking my sugar habit to the curb?

I have a few simple tools up my sleeve to share with you. 

  • Drinking MORE water.  Half of my Body Weight in Pounds, I drink in Ounces of Water.  So if you weigh 150lbs you should be drinking 75 Ounces of water daily.

 

  • Adding essential oils, especially CITRUS oils to my water.  Citrus oils like Lemon or Grapefruit contain high levels of d-LIMONENE.  d-Limonene is known to help promote weight loss, plus provide antioxidant support to the body.  It also adds great flavour to water, without adding sugar, which takes the cravings away.  When I feel a sugar craving starting, I can keep it at bay by drinking water with 2 drops of doTERRA’s Grapefruit essential oil.  Read more about the benefits of Grapefruit Essential Oils here.

 

  • Meal prep.  This is a big one!  Making sure I have healthy meals and ingredients ready to go is a big game changer.  I save money, eat better and have WAY more energy when it comes to preparing my meals, when I know exactly what I am having for dinner tonight. And when I’m hungry at 3pm, instead of hitting up the Timmy’s Drive through (Canadian’s you know what I’m talking about!) I have some veggies or fruits, balanced out with some nuts or seeds to snack on.  It doesn’t take much to fulfill that hunger and keep me on track before dinner time.  If you aren’t sure how to start meal prepping, connect with my friend Pam.  She runs great meal prep workshops.  Find her at Prep with Pam

 

  • Cook with LOTS of Flavour.  When your meals are full of flavour and spices, it makes it easy to look forward to a healthy meal.  I love stirfrys.  You can add so many different vegetables, choose your meet, add chickpeas or lentils and pack in a TON of flavour into one pan.  I even use my doTERRA Essential Oils in my cooking.  When your Essential Oils are pure enough to ingest, they can add some serious flavour combos to your meals (see my “Cooking with Essential Flavour” blog post for some of my favourite combos).

 

  • Move my body when I’m feeling bored or stressed. Often times I would sabotage my good eating during times of boredom or high stress.  Like when I’m working on a project that involves a lot of sitting and typing, or when I have a high stress appointment coming up, I will often head to the fridge and just start binging on whatever I could get my hands on.  Now instead, when I feel that urge, I pop my shoes on and go for a walk with the dogs.  Or even just get up and stretch, have a glass of water and reset my thinking.  Mindset is HUGE when it comes to changing habits.  It’s easy to change certain habits, but it’s just as easy NOT to change.  It really depends on how much you want the change to happen.

 

  • Being easier on myself when I decide to have a slice of cake.  Ok, this has been a major mindset shift for me.  I am very much an “all or none” kind of person.  So, when I am at a wedding or a birthday party, I binge on ALL of the FOOD!  Especially the cake, dips and chips and other yummy snacks.  Then I leave the party feeling bloated, angry and irritated at myself for being so out of control.  I beat myself up for getting off track and going back to my old ways.  What I have learned over the past few months is this; it’s OK to have your cake and eat it too.  The key here is to let yourself have the cake, and the chips and dip and whatever else suits your fancy, but make sure that before you put it ALL in your mouth, that you are going to be OK with how you feel afterwards.  This is being mindful about what you are eating.  Before digging into my slice of cake, I remind myself to savour every bite.  Really taste the icing and the chocolate and all of the cake goodness (Ok, I will stop talking about cake soon!  I promise!).  And then when your slice is finished, sit back and reflect on how good it was.  Soon you will realize that you don’t need to binge and you don’t need to feel upset about your choice to have cake. Own the cake and your decision to eat it (or not!) and move on!  Go back to eating healthy at your next meal and feeling great about your food choices.

Remembering that it’s a lifestyle choice not a diet fad has been a huge shift for me.  Just because I may get off track for a few days, doesn’t mean my efforts have to be given up.

Eating healthy is a LIFESTYLE.

I would love to hear from you some ways that you have been able to shift your habits to equal a healthy lifestyle.

~Laura @lauraessentiallyinspired

 

 

Easy Breakfast – Egg Muffins

 

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Well it’s back to school time and that usually means my mornings can be a little hectic.  I usually have no trouble getting breakfast on the table for the kids, it’s me that needs the help!

So I whipped up this quick and easy recipe to ensure I have something wholesome to grab in the mornings.

Simple, whole ingredients.  Here is what you will need:

Preheat over to 350 degrees F.

6 eggs.  Can be a mix of whole eggs or egg whites

12 Silicone Muffin Cups.  You can find them on well.ca here: Muffin Cups

Chopped Veggies of your choice.  I used roasted veggies we did on the BBQ the night before, but you could use anything you have.  Use your imagination!

Cooked Bacon (optional and yummy!)

Cheese.  Again your choice.  I used Feta because I love the flavour.

Here’s how you put it all together.

In a large measuring cup or bowl with a spout, crack eggs and mix with 1/2 cup of milk (again, type of milk is your choice!)

Layer Bacon, Cheese and Veggies into the muffin cups.  They can be about 3/4 of the way full.

Slowly pour egg mixture into the muffin cups.  They can be pretty full, but you want to be careful not to spill as you put them into the oven

Bake for 25-30 mins at 350 degrees F.

Remove from oven.  Let cool for 5 mins and then remove from muffin cups.

ENJOY!  Serve with a cup of berries, blueberries are my favourite.

You might like to make a double batch and store them in the freezer to reheat on busy mornings.

If you like this recipe, please feel free to share with your friends!

Don’t forget to follow me on Instagram @lauraessentiallyinspired and Facebook @Essentiallyinspiredwellness

9 Ways to get started with your doTERRA essential oils.

9 Ways to Get Started with Your doTERRA Essential Oils

So, you have finally taken the plunge into taking control of your wellness naturally and helping support your health.  You bought your first doTERRA essential oils and you are so excited to open the box and crack those little black caps open.  But then you realize you forgot everything you learned on how to use essential oils safely and effectively from the introduction class you went to.  How do I actually USE these oils?

I decided to write a little “what to do with my oils” guide and a simple, yet effective, routine for you to follow daily when it comes to adding essential oils into your life.

1. Getting Started: Let’s experience these beautiful drops from Mother Nature.

Crack open every single bottle!  That’s the first step.  Many of us have a fear of commitment.  Once you have cracked the seal and that bottle is open, it’s done!  You are now ready to use your oils.  If you feel inclined, take a nice deep inhale to familiarize yourself with the aroma of each oil.  Take a mental note of how you feel when experiencing each oil.  Don’t judge the smell, just embrace it in the moment.  This is the easiest way to determine which oils you may be “needing” right now.  Take cues from your body.  How do you feel?  Does this oil promote a memory or a specific feeling? Do you feel more or less drawn to a certain aroma today?  Experience your oils this way often.  You will be surprised how over time, you may be more or less drawn to a certain aroma.

2. Morning Oil Routine

Peppermint and Lemon.  These are my morning go to essential oils.  I like to start my day with a big glass of room temp water with a drop of Lemon.  This helps to provide cleansing support for my body and it sets the tone for my day.  My goal is to always respect my body, and this is my way of saying “thank you”.  My second morning routine is to add a drop of peppermint essential oil into the palm of my hands to inhale deeply.  This literally takes 15 seconds.  In this 15 seconds, it allows me a moment to connect with my breath and deeper into my soul.  The peppermint awakens my mind and is ready to get started.  Also, my airways feel open and cool, which gives me instant energy.  It is an invigorating feeling.  I often do this with peppermint a few times in my day if I start feeling stuck or sluggish in my work or play.

Adding AromaTouch to my moisturizer.  This is a new one for me.  It’s so refreshing and relaxing, I’m so excited to share this one with you.  Simply, add 1-3 drops of this essential oil blend to your moisturizer when you get out of the shower.  Massage into your neck, arms, legs, all over your body really.  It provides a cooling sensation and a calming aroma.  I bet you will have people asking – what are you wearing?  Pure plant extracts will naturally be your response.

Taking my Life Long Vitality Supplements. You may not have purchased these yet.  I encourage you to put them on your next order.  Quite simply, they have changed my life.  My energy level, immune system, digestive system and general mood has improved significantly since starting on these supplements daily.  If you would like more info on these, let’s chat!

3. Adding Oils to my Water

I have a few favourites for this.  My number one fav is Grapefruit.  It has a light citrus taste and helps to keep me chugging all day.  It makes my water less boring.  Feel free to try any of the citrus oils for this.  Lime, Wild Orange, Tangerine, Bergamot or even Smart and Sassy Blend.  Since we “should” be drinking upwards of 50-70 ounces of water a day to support our body’s, why not make it taste amazing!  Remember, you only need 1-2 drops in a whole bottle.  And only glass or stainless bottles please

4. Take a Relaxing Shower or Bath

I’m really not a bath person, so I take relaxing hot showers.  Normally in the evening before hoping into bed.  I have created a Relaxing Shower Spray.  It includes Serenity Blend, Balance Blend, Eucalyptus and Cedarwood.  I mix these into a small glass spray bottle, top up with water and then keep it in my shower.  Once the water is nice and hot, spray above my head a few times and take in the “ahhhhh”.

If I am looking for more of an awakening shower, I mix Grapefruit, Douglas Fir, Frankincense and Eucalyptus.  Repeat the above process for my morning shower.

If you are a bath person, try mixing this blend with some Epsom salts and take a nice warm soak in the tub.

5. Get Cooking!

Seriously, the flavour of essential oils is intense!  When you consider that 1 drop of peppermint essential oil is made from the amount of peppermint leaves required to make 28 cups of peppermint tea, you can see that we are dealing with some serious flavour here.

Some of my favourite oils for cooking.  Ginger, lemongrass, thyme, rosemary, basil, cumin, dill, oregano, lemon.  I use these weekly.  For dishes like stir fry, soups, roasting veg, marinating meats and baking muffins.  Use 1 drop for every 1 tsp of dried herbs or 1 tbsp of fresh herbs.  Sometimes I like to add more.  It just depends on the flavour you are looking for.  My tip, if possible, add the oil once you have taken your food off the heat of the stove.  This gives the best flavour.

6. Make a “tea”

Use your oils to make a warm tea.  A spoon of honey, a mug of warm water and your fav oil or blend.  Add a drop to the honey and stir in.  For an immune boosting warm drink, try a drop of On Guard and Lemon.  For a digestive support tea, try a drop of peppermint and ginger, or a drop of the Zengest blend.  Add Bergamot to regular tea, to make an Earl Grey tea.

7. Play with Diffuser Blends

There are SO many amazing diffuser blends you can create using your essential oils.  Here are some guidelines I like to use.

Add the woody oils (Frankincense, cedarwood, arborvitae, Balance) if you want to feel a sense of grounding or calming energy.

Add lavender or lavender based blends (lavender, Serenity) to promote relaxation.

Add citrus oils for a fresh, uplifting aroma.

Mint or Tree oils (peppermint, spearmint, Easy Air, Siberian or White fir, Douglas fir) for a cooling aroma and respiratory support.

8. Make some Roller bottles

Having premade roller bottles that are diluted with Fractionated Coconut oil is an easy way to have oils ready to go when you need them.  I make up a few different blends around my house. Here are my favs:

Oregano and On Guard – ready for when the kids come down with a cold.  Roll onto their feet for immune support.

Sleepy Blend (Vetiver, Roman Camomile, Cedarwood and Lavender) – ready for those nights when I just can’t settle my mind.  A swipe on the back of my neck and on my feet and I am in dreamland.

Ouchy Roller (tea tree, lavender and deep blue) – ready for bumps, bruises, bites, scrapes or burns. For kids and adults!

Pure-fume Roller (I love Aborviate, Lime and Spearmint, but you can do whatever your heart desires) – ready to roll onto pulse points when I’m heading out the door.

9. Get Creative! Try something new!

The easiest way to get to know your essential oils a little bit better is to try something different.  Try a new diffuser blend at night.  Try a new topical blend.  Try adding a new flavour to your water or your cooking.  Variety really is the spice of life.  AND when you use essential oils, as long as you are using them safely, you really can’t go wrong.

If you haven’t started your essential oils journey, but now you REALLY want to, let’s connect!  I would love to help you bring these wonderful oils into your life.

In Health

~Laura, Essentially Inspired

*Disclaimer: The views in this blog are only my opinion.  Feel free to make your own opinion about essential oils.  Always follow the label for safe use. Remember to always dilute your oils with a carrier oil when using them topically. Never put essential oils in your eyes, ears, nose or other sensitive areas of the body.  None of the advice in this blog is meant to serve as medical advice.  Always consult with your doctor or naturopath if you are looking for medical advice. Only use essential oils if you are looking to make a positive change in your life.

The one thing you can do to create change in your life

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Have you ever had one of those days, weeks, months, years, where you have felt like you are in a rut?  You feel like you are just running the hamster wheel and you can’t seem to get off?

Our lives are a series of events.  In many cases those events include the day to day routine.  Get up, get dressed, get the kids to school, get to work, work, get home, make dinner, clean the house, go to bed, start over tomorrow.  Does this sound familiar?

You may feel like it’s impossible to make a change.  Maybe the change you want is to start a new career, or start a new workout routine.  Maybe it’s that you would like to take a course or just eat a little better.  Or maybe you want to make your relationships more passionate or reconnect with an old friend.  But how the heck can do it?  How the heck can it be possible fit more in to your already packed schedule?

Well that was me, and some days, it still is me.

We all get into a rut from time to time. It’s how we get out of it that makes the difference.

Want to know the secret that I learned back in my university days? It is so simple it will blow your mind. Ready for it?

DO ONE THING DIFFERENTLY   That’s it! By just changing one thing in your daily rut of a routine, you can change a whole lot in your life.

Ok, you’re probably thinking it sounds SO simple that it couldn’t possibly work, right?

Let me use an example to show you how easy it is.

Mornings for me are hectic.  My kids never want to cooperate and I always feel rushed, like I’m racing out the door just to get to where I need to be, and usually I end up forgetting something on my way out.  Which makes the rest of my day suck!

So, I want to make a change in my mornings.  I have a couple of options that I could change:

I could wake up 30 mins earlier, have more time to get ready and then not be as rush.  Ok that’s an option.

Maybe I could choose my clothing and lay it out in the evening, that way I don’t have to spend time thinking about what I will wear in the morning.

Another option is that I could shower in the evening, that way I will have one less thing to do in the morning. Ok, this might work.

How about packing the car in the evening, so that when I am ready to leave in the morning, everything I need is ready to go.  All I have to do is hop in and drive away.  That sounds like a really great idea.

See, it doesn’t matter which one I choose, it is going to make my day better. By just doing one small thing different, I am able to get out of my house in the morning without stress and anxiety about the rest of my day.  Pretty cool right!

Making this work still takes some discipline.  You still have to DO the one thing that is different.  And sometimes the simplicity of a task, is also it’s downfall.  Because, as simple it is to DO that one thing differently, it is just as simple NOT to do it.

This goes for many things in life:
It is simple to drink more water.  It is also simple to NOT drink more water.

It is simple to make a healthy choice when it comes to eating. It is also simple to get fast food

It is simple to wake up 30 mins earlier in the morning. It is also simple to hit the snooze button.

It is simple to be nice to people.  It is also simple to forget to say please, thank you and your welcome.

You REALLY have to WANT to make change in order to make it HAPPEN.

The key to success of change is to start small.  Choose just one thing that you would like to make a little bit better.  Work on that one thing for a week or two until your routine has changed and become your new “normal”.

You can try to even do super tiny different things in your day, just to create a shift in the way you think about things or the way you see things.

Try taking a new route to work.

Try sitting in a different spot at your kitchen table.

Try stopping for 5 seconds in the middle of your day to take a deep breath and sigh.

Try sending a text message to your loved one that says “I love you” just because.

These little gestures can completely change your outlook!  Which can have a huge impact on your productivity, your success, your happiest and your life as a whole.

Give it a try today.

DO ONE THING DIFFERENTLY.  And be excited about all of the change you will welcome into your life.

~Laura

Essentially Inspired

@essentiallyinspired_wellness

Why I left my 75k a year corporate job, and it wasn’t about the money!   Everyone should have a Network Marketing Business, in my opinion anyways!

 

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There are 2 titles to this blog, and I did that on purpose, because really, I couldn’t write one without the other.

Let me introduce myself.

Laura Skjelmose; Corporate Sales Account Manager.  This is the title I held for the past 13 years.

I have sold products and services to businesses and individuals for the past 13 years – my entire adult career. I’ve always loved the “people” aspect of the job.  Getting to talk to people about their businesses, getting to know the operations and providing them with solutions to help run things more smoothly, helping to get their products to the customer easier, create brand awareness and so many more aspects.  I loved doing this.

BUT, I hated my job.  Now I will agree that “hate” is a very strong word, and I certainly do not use such a word around my 2 children.  But that is the only way I can describe how I felt about the work I was doing.  Yes, I was helping businesses grow and flourish.  Yes, I was providing good service and quality products to my customers.  Yes, I was building relationships and some friendships along the way.  But at the end of the day, I was doing all of these things to help make someone, at the top of the chain in my business, a LOT of money.  And I was having heart palpations and stress anxiety while doing it.

Admittedly, it isn’t always about the money.  It is ALWAYS about your personal health and well-being.  It’s about being able to work hard and be rewarded for that hard work in ways that are fulfilling.  Being recognized for big wins and small wins.  Being acknowledged for the literal blood, sweat and tears that you put into every phone call, every email, every spreadsheet, every complaining customer that you had to put at ease, every account you lost for something that was completely out of your control and every closed (or not closed) sale.

Yes, I was compensated fairly.  I made a decent salary, a good commission and was given a fair share of benefits to boot.

 

These things were not what I needed to fill my cup.

 

I needed so much more for my emotional well-being.  I wanted to be loved on by the people I worked for (trust me, hugs and praises are not something that go around in a corporate office!)  I needed my passions to be fueled.  I wanted to make a REAL difference in the lives of other people AND be able to help them with their personal wants and needs.  I need more.

How I got started (and how you can get started) with Network Marketing

Enter doTERRA, an essential oils Multilevel Marketing Company or Network Marketing company.

When I was first introduced to the business that is doTERRA in 2015, Network Marketing seemed like a pipe dream.  Clearly, I was too late entering this business.  Clearly, everyone in my social circle had already been exposed to this company (or any other MLM or Network marketing company) so why would they want to buy products, let alone do this business, with me?

 

WOW, was I ever wrong.

 

As I began to use the products, and started seeing a change in my personal health and the health of my entire family, I was compelled to tell others.  That is how my business started.  No brick and mortar building rental or expensive business cards or spending money on branding or web design.  Just talking about my experiences and sharing some oils with other people.  That was the initial investment.  Just the products, that I was already buying and using anyways.  This is how you start a business in Network Marketing.

 

Step 1 to doing Network Marketing: Find a product you love and use and share it with others.  THAT’S IT!!!

 

Personal Development

As I began to become more active in my doTERRA business, I began to get involved in training and mentoring with other people who were “higher up” then me in this business, my Upine.  At first, I thought; “sure, of course they want me to be successful, it makes them more successful, and they will make more money on the work I am doing” and my limiting beliefs from the corporate world began to creep in.  “If I work hard, someone else benefits” RIGHT?

These beliefs did not last long.  After a long talk with myself and my ego, I decided to give this a try and just open up to see what would happen.  That is when I really started to see the opportunity in this business.

My Upline provided wonderful weekly trainings (online, that took place in the evening, so I could attend while still working corporate) that allowed me to really see how this business could be successful and allowed me to connect with my inner drive and fuel my motivation.

I soon come to the realization that yes, if I am successful my Upline makes more money, but realizing the reason that they invested so much time and effort into helping me to succeed, was that if I did not succeed, they didn’t either!  Their job, aside from educating others and selling essential oils, was to make sure I had the right tools to succeed!  HOW FRIGGING COOL IS THAT!!!

 

Step 2 to doing Network Marketing: Be open to change!  Growth in yourself and change in the way you look at the world and businesses.

 

Why your Upline wants you to succeed

In corporate sales, I was so used to the idea that you just had to get out there and slug it.  Pound the pavement, knock on doors and just do whatever it takes to get the sale.  And if you didn’t succeed, didn’t meet your quota at the end of the term, you were fired.  That was that.

Network Marketing is SO MUCH DIFFERENT!!! The only goals or quotas you have are your own. You can’t get fired.  It is in your Upline’s best interest to make sure you succeed!  Without you, they won’t succeed!

And the coolest part is, my Upline ACTUALLY CARES ABOUT ME!  Like I mean really cares! They are willing to do things like help out with childcare, drive long distances to help me share my products, do web conferences, provide business and sales training, all for free, whatever it takes to make sure I have the tools to do this business and be successful.

 

Why?

 

Because I am their business! Without me, they don’t grow.  Without me, their business does not succeed.  Yes, they have customers, but ultimately, it is a lot easier to grow with the help of others.  We rise by lifting up others.

Our in-town team meetings are all inclusive. Everyone helps to present ideas, share stories of success and stories of failure.  Help one another overcome obstacles in our businesses. Everyone is included.  And everyone matters!

 

Step 3 to doing Network Marketing: Be ready and open to being celebrated and really matter to someone else.

 

It feels so good to be a part of something more

Now I am at a point in my business that I have a group of people, who just like me, want to do something more and make more of a difference in what they do.  And it feels so incredibly amazing to be able to empower these individuals to go out there and succeed.  My favourite thing on the planet is to celebrate their accomplishments and achievements and be able to have a little part in their success.

On July 21st, 2017, I handed in the keys to my company car and walked out of my corporate office for good.  I said goodbye to stressful days and sleepless night.  I said goodbye to rushed mornings with my children and busy evenings trying to get dinner on the table and put the kids to bed.  But most importantly, I said Hello to a beautiful new beginning.  And it feels so free!

 

Step 4 to doing Network Marketing:  Take the leap, dive, jump, plunge!  Just do it!  (But really do it, because it is not easy, but oh so rewarding!)

 

If you are ready to make a change in your life, or the lives of others, let’s connect.  This opportunity is for anyone who wants it.  All you have to do is be ready for change and REALLY WANT IT!

 

~ Laura – Essentially Inspired

Simply Clean (and Green!)

Published in Lake Simcoe Living Magazine Fall 2017 issue

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During the industrial revolution, companies were on a mission to create something for everything.  When it came to cleaning products, clever marketing led us to believe that we needed a different product for every household chore.  A specific cleaner for our kitchen counters, bathrooms, floors, stove tops, ovens and windows.  This adds up to a lot of products in our homes along with a lot of unknown chemicals, as almost all of these items do not include ingredient lists.  If you dig a little deeper you will find these products include substances including, but not limited to; phthalates, triclosan (banded by the FDA but NOT banned by Health Canada), ammonia and 2-butoxyethanol.  Each of these substances have known toxic properties to our bodies, can disrupt our hormone systems and begin to bio accumulate in the environment, especially when we rinse them down our drains.

It becomes very difficult to determine which products are better or “green”, since most do not list the ingredients on the bottle, but also because many companies use a clever marketing technique that has become known as “Green Washing”.  Basically, the company will create a brand and use words like “organic” “green” or “biodegradable” to make the consumer feel like the product must be a better choice.  Unfortunately, none of these words indicate the level of toxic compounds in the product.  And most times the ingredients are still not listed, which in my mind means the company has something to hide.

Thankfully the solution to reducing toxins in your household products is simple! Go back to the way things were done before these products were created.  Your grandmother was on to something when she pulled out the bottle of vinegar and the box of baking soda to clean the grime off of her stove top or bathtub.  Clean can be green! And extremely affordable!

Here are some simple natural and non-toxic ingredients that can be used to get your home clean.  (Because ultimately, someone will make a sandwich on your counter top, and you probably don’t want any germs or toxins getting on said sandwich.)

Vinegar:  White vinegar contains approximately 5-7% acetic acid.  This relatively high concentration of acid makes vinegar a great solution for combating mould, bacteria and other microbes.  For jobs that require a little more acid umph, try pickling vinegar.

Baking Soda:  Sodium Bicarbonate is a salt that can help to cut through geese and grime, lifts up dirt off of surfaces, has deodorizing properties and even whitens surfaces.  Including your teeth!

Hydrogen Peroxide:  H2O2 – water with an extra molecule, has amazing disinfectant properties, without harming the environment because it simply breaks down to water and oxygen.  It should be diluted to a 3% solution when used.  Works well with vinegar for a 1 – 2 punch when cleaning surfaces.

Alcohol: The higher the % the better.  Nothing can live in alcohol solution – see ya bacteria, virus and other microbes! It has amazing cleaning and disinfecting properties and it dries fast on surfaces.

Castile Soap: Liquid soap made from vegetable oils.  No petroleum products, no synthetics, no yuck.  It is just soap in its purest form.  Usually comes in a bottle that is concentrated, so a little goes a long way. Always be sure to check that your castile soap only contains vegetable oils, there are some imposters out there.

Essential Oils: Not only do they smell amazing, but these little plant derived drops of oil have pretty powerful anti-microbial properties.  Reach for Essential Oils of Lemon, Tea Tree, Clove and peppermint when you want to increase the germ fighting power of your cleaner and make your room smell amazing, without chemical fragrance. (Buyer beware, not all essential oils are created equally. If you would like to know my brand of choice, let’s connect!)

DIY All Purpose Spray:

1 cup water

2 tsp Castile Soap

20 drops of essential oils (lemon, tea tree, rosemary etc)

Shake before using.

Use on all surfaces: countertops, bathtubs, tiles, floors

Simple Surface Disinfectant

Spray vinegar mixed with lemon essential oil on the surface.  Let sit for 2 mins and wipe off.

Spray Hydrogen Peroxide on the same surface and wipe off.  Say goodbye to germs.

DIY Toilet Bowl Cleaner:

½ cup baking soda

1 cup white vinegar

10 drops of essential oil (peppermint, lemon and tea tree)

Mix the vinegar and essential oils into a spray bottle and spray the toilet.

Sprinkle the baking soda into the toilet bowl and scrub.

Wipe the seat and other parts of the toilet with the vinegar spray.

DIY Glass Cleaner

¼ cup rubbing alcohol

¼ cup white vinegar

1 tsp cornstarch (since glass is not a flat surface, this helps with streaks)

2 cups warm water

10 drops essential oils lemongrass, peppermint or lemon

Mix in a spray bottle, spray onto windows and wipe clean with a cloth.

When making DIY cleaning recipes, make sure you clearly label what is in each bottle and store in a safe place, out of reach of children and pets. Even though these are non-toxic, they can still irritate the skin or cause stomach issues if ingested.

If you aren’t sure which essential oils to use, let’s connect!  I would be happy to give you some guidance.

~Laura, Essentially Inspired