Monday, February 21, 2011

Get [Your House] Clean, Naturally

I've been having fun with Shaklee's Basic H2 and Scour off paste, seeing all the things they can clean. I started with my toughest job, my glass stove top. I couldn't get this off no matter how hard I scrubbed. My mom even gave me a special scrubber made for it and although it took some off, it couldn't get it all.

Glass Stove top with burnt on stuff:

Glass top after Scour Off Paste (hallelujah!!)
I used the Scour off with a green scrubby sponge and a bit of water, rubbed it around and left it. I let it sit for about 5 minutes and took a regular sponge and took it off.It was so wonderful that there was no toxic fumes or harsh smell. It actually smells a lot like bubblegum.

Now onto another huge job, the oven, *shudder*. My current oven has a self-clean function, but at our last apartment we didn't and it was horrible. It was the worst experience trying to get the burnt on stuff off when we moved and my newborn just across the room. I scrubbed for 4 hours, SERIOUSLY 4 hours and barely made a dent, I really wish I had had Scour Off then. The fumes were so bad, I had to put a mask on. I also had to wash my hands a million times because I felt like there was still chemicals on my skin, which there probably was.

So even though my oven has a self-clean function, I don't like using it (nasty smell and heat) especially in the summer in Vegas.
Nasty oven stuff:

I almost always spill stuff pumpkin pie when I bake. I over fill the crusts...oops.

A whole new oven:

I used the Scour Off the same way as the glass top. Applied with a scrubby sponge and some water, scrubbed it around and let it sit a couple minutes. It did take me two times because the layers of cooked on stuff was so thick. This experience was so much more pleasant than my 4 hour experience. I didn't need a mask, there were NO fumes, I didn't feel like I had residue on my skin.

Again the before and after shots:

I also used the Scour Off on my sink. I had peeled potatoes and left the peels too long and they discolored my sink...

Honestly, this is just the beginning of the things that I've cleaned. With the Basic H2 I've cleaned spots on my carpet, marks on the wall, and dirty boots. I pretty much use it on anything that needs cleaning. It simplifies my life so much. I only need one concentrate to make window, all-purpose, and a degreaser.

Here are some more cleaning pictures...

Spots on the carpet in front of the couch

Dirty leather boots

 I wish I had the before picture (I think I deleted it) of this because this spot on the carpet gave me so many headaches. It's right inside our door and the tile part is small enough that you have to step here to close the door behind you before taking off your shoes. Well this strip was so bad, it was a super dark grey.

And now it matches the rest of the room! Thank you Basic H2!
And the little blur on the side, that's my kid trying to get into the frame. Silly kid.

Head over to The Hand That Rocks the Cradle, I've got a giveaway going on over there for a sample of the Basic H2. Go enter!

Monday, February 14, 2011

Heart Frame

Happy Valentine's Day everyone!

I put together a little craft. I didn't get to do everything I wanted as this has been a particularly stressful week (completely unrelated to V-day). I started with a dollar store frame, white paint, and these red and white glass hearts. I don't know where they came from, my husband has given these to me. Shortly after we started dating I began to find them in my coat pocket, my purse, in my car, etc.They've been his special little way to show his love.

I simply glued them to the frame, after painting it white, and put a picture of my husband and I in it. I've been looking for a way to use these hearts and I really like how it turned out.

Friday, February 4, 2011

February is American Heart Month

Since 1963, the President has declared February American Heart Month. Today the number one killer in American is heart disease! With over processed foods on the rise and exercise largely on the decline, heart disease can affect almost anyone. Women are just as susceptible as men and it is even the 3rd leading cause of death of women 25-44 years.(source)

There are many things you can do to protect your heart.
  • First it's very important to know your family history of heart disease.
  • Choose lean meats without skin (as yummy as it can be) and don't add any saturated and trans fats when preparing. (my general guide is if it is solid at room temp, it's saturated or trans fats; lard, shortening, butter, margarine, cheese etc. However, also limit cream, palm kernel oil, cottonseed oil, and coconut oil).
  • Select fat-free or low fat dairy products
  • cut back on processed foods because they often contain high amounts of partially-hydrogenated vegetable oils, trans fats, and sodium (salt).Why is salt so bad? watch this video...(sorry about the ad and Leah's potty mouth, I wish I could have edited it)
holy wow! I've heard of 'having a big heart' but that's just scary.
  • Cut back on foods high in cholesterol. Try for less than 300 mg/day
  • Cut back on beverages and foods with added sugars. Look for naturally sweetened alternatives, if you must.
  • If you drink, drink in moderation.
  • Monitor your portion size. Eat slowly so your stomach has time to communicate to your brain that it is full (I've heard it can take about 20 minutes). 

It is wise to supplement your diet with vitamins and nutrients that help support the body's various functions. Why? Well here are a couple reasons.
  • Busy lives make it difficult to make healthy choices. Have you gotten your recommended 5-9 servings of fruits and vegetables today? (Don't worry I haven't either)
  • Our food has become largely over-processed and produce is often harvested too early, which reduces the concentration of essential nutrients that we need. 
  • Exposure to polluted air and water
  • Fast Foods
  • In general, supplements are a proactive health assurance to make sure your body is getting all the nutrients it needs each day. 
Shaklee carries many supplements that support cardiovascular function. If you currently suffer from high cholesterol, the New Cholesterol Reductions Complex works naturally to lower your number by preventing absorption and lowers LDL ("bad") cholesterol. It also delivers daily 100% of the National Institues of Heath's (NIH) recommendation for plant sterols and stanols, it's gluten free and Kosher certified.

Another great way to reduce your risk of heart disease and high blood pressure is to lose extra weight you may be carrying around (I'm guilty too, darn baby weight 16 months later), especially belly weight which is the most dangerous kind. For help loosing it, try the Cinch program. They have shakes, meal bars, snack bars, energy tea, and a boost. I've tried the peanut snack bars and they are yummy. My husband tried the shakes as a quick meal on the go on his way to work and said it the vanilla shake was really great tasting (no weird after taste) and left him satisfied. Try these tips from Dr.Stork about trimming belly fat and follow the heart healthy tips listed above to reduce your risk of heart disease. Start this month and make it a part of your daily routine for a healthier life!

    Wednesday, February 2, 2011

    Safe and Natural Living

    A little about me first...
    What you may or may not know is that I try to live a very natural life, especially lately. When my husband and I were planning for Andrew's birth we decided to cloth diaper him. It has been a great experience for us; saved us money and trash. We love our BumGenius One Size diapers and plan to use them for the rest of our children. Andrew likes his diapers too...
    Another thing I did for him was making fresh baby food from organic produce. He preferred it to store bought whenever we have traveled and it was our only option.

     In the past couple months I've really been making an effort to remove toxins from our home. I made sure to use BPA free bottles, sippy cups, spoons, bowls, etc. for Andrew. But do you know what other household items have BPA in them? Almost all canned foods are lined with BPA. Foods high in acidity are especially saturated with BPA, like tomato sauces and pastes. In an effort to reduce and eliminate our contamination I've started using dried beans, fresh tomatoes, frozen vegetables, and pasta sauces in glass jars or plastic bottles that are NOT labeled with 3,6, or 7 (these are the bad ones). I also changed out our shower curtain liners for 100% PEVA ones.

    Lastly I've been giving my cleaning routine a makeover. I don't like creating waste so I usually use a washable cloth for things like dusting and windows. I got a name brand 'green' cleaner a while back to cut back on the chemicals in my home. It worked pretty well, although it left a bunch of streaks and the smell still gave me a headache. 

    Then a couple months ago I won a giveaway for a free sample of Shaklee's Basic H2. The sample was so small I kinda felt ripped off, even though I got it for free. But I went ahead and mixed it according to the instructions - 2 drops to 16oz of water for cleaning windows and mirrors and 1/4 tsp of the Basic H2 to 16 oz of water for an all-purpose cleaner. I started using it all around my house - counters, sinks, floors, everywhere. The first thing I noticed was that I didn't get headaches anymore! The second thing I was really impressed with was how concentrated the product was; just two drops made a 16oz bottle of window cleaner!!! You can't beat that even with a dollar store bottle of window cleaner!

    A week ago I came across the opportunity to share these products with others. I took a couple days to think about it and my enthusiasm never waned. I read about Shaklee's products, their company, and their business opportunity. I decided to take the plunge and joined Shaklee as an independent distributor.

    I have fallen in love even more since then. I watched training videos and was AMAZED by the quality products they produce and I had never even heard about them. They are the first company in the world to be certified Climate Neutral, meaning they offset all their carbon emissions (from manufacturing to shipping product) having a net zero impact on the environment!!

    I just want you to know that I am passionate about living a safe and natural life to improve my health and to preserve the environment. If you are interested in learning more about Shaklee's awesome business opportunity to work for yourself, but not by yourself, let me help! If you want to know more about the products, check out my website and stay tuned for more posts about the fabulous job they do cleaning. The best part is I can work from home and still be available for my son. The best of both worlds.

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