The Holistic Chick Online

Heathy and Holistic Inside and Out…Don't Drink Coffee While Riding an Elliptical.

My Favorite Herb for Aromatherapy.

There are many single herbs and herbal combinations that make for great uses for aromatherapy, but my all time favorite, one that I cannot do without, is lavender.

I’ll take lavender in anything:  soap, lotions, salves, mixed with peppermint for headache relief, in honey, even in tea.  Lavender is simple yet elegant, clean, soothing and versatile.  Ever had a Lavender Shortbread Cookie with a fresh cup of coffee?  Delicious.

Owens Acres Lavender Salve

Lavender calms my nerves, eases my headaches, soothes my stomach and in a humidifier helps with my colds.  At work, with only three hours under my belt and another five to go, I have a lavender salve I daub beneath my nose and rub into my temples for a quick pick me up.  I also have a Lavender Lotion I use on my hands, my co-workers wonder what that fresh smell is.

Lavender can be blended with many other essential oils as well.  Like I mentioned above, a Lavender/Peppermint oil mixture works on my headaches like nothing else.  Lavender mixed with lemon makes a wonderful lotion, Lavender mixed with Rose is absolutely elegant, I have a tiny bottle I purchased of the two mixed together and used as a perfume.

 

Mountain Rose Herbs (here in my home state) is having a giveaway over at their blog for a copy of Kathi Keville’s book, Aromatherapy:  A Complete Guide to the Healing Art as well as Mountain Rose Herbs Classic Essential Oil Kits. Check out their blog, check out their wonderful website (they even have tea!)and enter to win.

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My face today

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Image by Nomad@Live via Flickr

I woke up this morning with my face looking just, blech.  I had flakes on my forehead, in my eyebrows, around my nose, large looking pores on my right cheek and the outside corners of my eyes were red from when my eyes watered when I was asleep.  My skin felt like I had fallen asleep with water on it, tight and slimy in places.

Of course I had to wash my face and I could use cosmetics to cover up the nasty parts, but I have to be in the mood for foundation and today I wasn’t.  So this is what I did:

When I hit the shower I grabbed my bar of Pure Olive Oil Soap and a loofa complexion pad.  I washed my face with the soap and my hands, rinsed, lathered my face again and went over it with the loofa in circular motions, staying away from my eyes but definitely hitting the rest.  I rinsed, took care the rest of my body, then used the olive oil soap one more time just in case any hair condition got on my forehead.

I let my face “settle” after drying.  I don’t pile on the products one right after the other, I give my face a rest, so after a half an hour or so, I used a non alcoholic toner on my face.  I let that sit for about 15 minutes, then I used my pure extra virgin organic coconut oil, of which I added a few drops of peppermint and lavender essential oil (all mixed up in a separate jar) and massaged that in real good, avoiding my eyes.  While I was at it, I did my hands and arms as well.  For around the eyes I pat on some Argan Oil.

Done. My face feels great, its not greasy, tight, dry, itchy…and six hours later I don’t have any breakouts.  I never did put makeup on, I just left my face as is.

And to think I used to spend around $200 for a facial care line every three months that had way too many steps and honestly didn’t do anything positive for my face.  Looking back, I can safely say all that product accomplished was emptying  my wallet.

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Holistic Chick Readers Now have a Gift!

Owens Acres has offered a discount for Holistic Chick readers for orders on her website!  Just enter in the coupon code Holistic at the end of your order to receive 10% off.

Mother’s Day is approaching, last year I made lovely gift baskets using products only from Owens Acres and the compliments were amazing.  Not only did I give the gift of health, I was able to give lovely homemade lotions, teas, soaps and salves and I didn’t spend a fortune.  You bet I will be doing it again this year.  She’s also doing her beading again, so her lovely nature jewelry is back.

So give the gift of health this year for Mother’s Day.  Flowers are beautiful, but they don’t last.  I would prefer to give my mother a lovely bag of dried flowers she can steep in hot water and drink for her health, like this gorgeous new creation, Summer Solstice:

Owens Acres Summer Solstice Tea

Contains Raspberry Leaf, Lavender, Sunflower Petals, Rose Petals, Calendula and Spearmint.

Here’s a quick rundown of the benefits of the flowers and herbs that are in this tea, thanks to http://www.teabenefits.com:

Raspberry Leaf:  astringent, anti-inflammatory, anti-bacterial

Lavender:  helps with nervous system, like help get rid of stress, calm nerves; also helps with an upset tummy.

Sunflower Petals:  contain Carnitine, an amino acid, a nutrient that helps the body turn fat into energy.

Rose Petals:  known for their regenerative effect on the nervous system as well as their purifying effects on the body.

Spearmint:  good for mild heartburn, indigestion and upset tummies.

Even with all this goodness, the tea still sounds delicious!

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Review: Owens Acres California Gold Fruit Tisane

 

Owens Acres California Gold Tisane

Owens Acres California Gold Fruit Tisane contains dried Persimmons and Pears, Chamomile, Calendula, Sunflower Petals and Orange Peel Chunks.  Called a “Tisane” because there’s no actual tea in this.

I used a Japanese Self Fill Tea Bag instead of a traditional strainer, and I steeped it for about 15 minutes in a mug that’s about 22 oz.  I like my tea strong, needless to say.  Still steaming hot (that water was BOILING) I admired the color and inhaled the glorious steam coming off of it.  The only way I can describe the color, other than the fact that its yellow, is by this picture:

sunlight through daffoldil

Image by jiva via Flickr

Seriously, the sun shining through a daffoldil is EXACTLY how this brewed up, its just the most gorgeous yellow I have encountered in a hot tisane.

Its chamomile heavy, but the Sunflowers and the Calendula mellow it so its even more soothing.  the fruit adds a gentle sweetness that is like biting into a piece of fresh fruit, not like eating candy.

I came home after an absolutely cruddy day at work and dove right into this to settle my frayed nerves and upset tummy from said nerves.  I have a passion for Calendula in tea because its good for tummies.

 

Lets look at some of the health benefits of this lovely blend:

Persimmon: I found a whole slew of valuable information here

Pear: Great information about the health benefits of pears here

CalendulaHere, thanks to teabenefits.com

ChamomileHere, thanks again to teabenefits.com

Sunflower Petals:  My brain hurt after reading up on the benefits of the petals of a Sunflower.  Sunflower petals contain Carnitine, which is an amino acid, a nutrient that helps the body turn fat into energy.  You can buy it as a supplement.  I found information all over the internet.  If you click on the highlighted word above, it wills send you to a very useful link.

Orange Peel:  I honestly had no idea orange peels were good for us, but I found a very interesting article here.   I actually bookmarked this website, it was easy to read and had lots of good information on other things.

 

Now that I am finished researching and highlighting and linking, my cup in empty.  I could imagine how wonderful this would be iced.  If you need a tea to take the edge off  and help you slow down, this bright refreshing cup is a must.

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Regarding my vitamin post, and an Owens Acre Update

My package from Vitacost came today at roughly 2PM.  Not to bad for free shipping and I ordered on Tuesday.  As well as the Vit C with Rose Hips and the Echinacea, I got a box of that Emergenc-C stuff that I see everywhere.  I read the ingredients on all the different types and ended up with the Immune Defense Formula.  Each packet (mix with 4-6 oz of water) has 1000mgs of Vitamin C, 15 mg of Zinc, all sorts of other vitamins but also has added 100 mg of hibiscus extract as well as 25 mg of elderberry concentrate.  I have never tried this but with the diseases I face at work I figured I would give it a go.

The taste is HORRIBLE.  There’s no two ways around it.  Thank God its just a small amount to drink but GAH.  I am not going to give up on it yet, though.

My Owens Acres Box came as well.  Once I ripped the tape off I simply stuck my nose in and breathed in the goodness.  I am now the proud owner of her Botanical Scents Fruit Salad Roll-Ons.

Owens Acres Fruit Salad Roll on

The Fruit Salad is on only synthetic scent out of the rest which are aromatherapeutic,  such as Simply Lavender, Oh So Citrus (I keep that in my purse, its a boost of sunshine ANYTIME), Energizing (with ginger, Grapefruit, Lime and Juniper essential oils), Calming (with Lavender, Lemongrass and Orange essential oils, great for kids), as well as  Honey Orange (with Orange Blossoms and Honey).  All are listed here.

I got two tea samples as well.  Orchard Delight,

Owens Acres Orchard Delight Fruit Tisane

which has dried Pears, Apricots, Apples, with hibiscus flowers, Lemon Verbena and Camomile.  The smell is flowery, you can get a little of the hibiscus and the sweet of the dried fruits.  The other is the California Gold,

Owens Acres California Gold Fruit Tisane

which is sunshine in a bag, as I hope you can tell by the picture.  The California Gold has dried Persimmons and Pears, Chamomile, Calendula, Sunflower Petals, and Orange Peel chunks.  The smell?  Sweet, flowery and a bit earthy.  My next post will be how they taste, as right now I am still drinking coffee. *grins*

 

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Owens Acres Fruit Teas are Here!

I cannot wait for my package to show up from Owens Acres,  the new fruit teas are up on the website here.  I know I am going to love them, because I love all of their teas, but once I try them I will definitely be back to tell everyone about them.

California Gold Fruit Tea

Also, the Four Thieves Herbs are ready as well, and that will be showing up in my package as well.  If you’ve read my previous post about the illnesses I have to come in contact with on a daily basis, you know my excitement for this product is huge.

Owens Acres Vinegar of Four Thieves

The tea I simply cannot wait to try, as tea is my go to fix for everything and anything.

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Online Shopping for Vitamins and Sickness

Some rose hips in close-up

Image via Wikipedia

When it comes to ordering things online, I haven’t an ounce of shame.  As long as the shipping is non existent or decent, I will order what I can online.  Cosmetics, bath and body care, you name it.

One of my regular places to shop is http://www.vitacost.com because they have pretty much everything I am looking for

So yesterday I ordered my vitamins from Vitacost.com, as well as extra Vitamin C with Rose Hips as well as Echinacea.  Now, I checked online at Walmart and Rite-Aid and Walgreens (all of which are here in town) to see how much it would cost if I just went into the store and bought them.

My Alive Whole Food Vitamins are between $45-$55 for the exact same amount of pills.  VitaCost (where I’ve always ordered them) is $22

I found Vitamin C with Rose hips, for $11, and its only 100 pills.  I got 500mg, 250 ct bottle of Vit C with Rose Hips for $5.79

Echinacea?  50 ct bottle for 9 bucks.  I got a 1200mg, 180 ct bottle for  $6.95.  Both are the NSI brand, which I have found to be a good brand for herbs and vitamins.

Oh, and not only were the vitamins a good price, there was also free shipping.

Now I know of all the press Echinacea has been getting recently, that it doesn’t work, but for me it works, which is why I am stocking up on it and Vitamin C.  My workplace is a hotbed of disease:  one person that I know of has walking pneumonia, and several others have bronchitis.  The last thing I want is to catch any of this, so I am doing what I can to boost my immune system so I don’t (oh, and I am also taking a probiotic as well) end up with the same illnesses.  I had an upper-respiratory thing a few weeks ago and after spending two days drinking nothing but hot, organic Ceylon tea, I wasn’t sniffling anymore, so of course I am still drinking tea (I read hibiscus helps as well) and disinfecting everything in sight.

I will have the Four Thieves blend in my hot little hands in a few days to use as a germ killer, anyone have success using this?

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Shampoo and Condition off the DrugStore Shelf

Introduced flowers, such as this Kahili Ginger...

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I will be the first to admit, I did something stupid.  Two weeks ago I was at my local drugstore to get girl things.  You know what I mean, swabs, cotton balls, pads, razors…chick things.  I was in the hair product aisle and obviously had some sort of moment because I ended up buying a huge bottle of shampoo and its matching conditioner.

Don’t get me wrong, they smell awesome.  Absolutely awesome.  I spent maybe $4 for each 11 oz bottle, and the bottles are pretty!  They’re green, there’s shea butter and something else yummy in both products and the whole eye and nose experience was lovely.  It got even better when I washed and conditioned my hair.  My hair looked and felt and smelled wonderful, I could easily get a comb through it, and the wonderful smell lasted all day!

These things lasted about four days.  On day number five I couldn’t stop scratching my scalp for the life of me.  I thought at first that it was because I missed a day washing my hair (which as it turned out, I didn’t) because I was in denial, but yep, it turns out my lovely, cheap shampoo and conditioner is full of chemicals my scalp does NOT like.

Needless to say, I learned my lesson.  So back to Dr. Bronners Lavender Bar Soap and my 100% Organic Virgin Coconut Oil as a conditioner.  What was I thinking?!

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My Happiness Has No Boundaries

Owens Acres Spring Bloom Tea

When I got these two blog updates in my email the other day I was so excited containing myself was out of the question.  I whooped for joy and woke up several sleeping cats.  They got over it, but it took some time.  The Evil Feline Look of Doom doesn’t get very far in this house, but they like to think it does.

Anyway, this showed up first:

http://owensacres.wordpress.com/2011/03/07/organic-yerba-mate-tea-blends-coming-soon/

I never thought I would see the day when Laura would give us caffeinated tea.  Not that I am complaining, her tisanes have been very beneficial to me and my health and I don’t know what I would do without them, but a little pick me up is always welcome, especially if its healthy!   She says on her blog:

Yerba Mate is one of the best healing beverages in the world with over 196 active compounds which shadows the active compounds compared to green tea which has about 144. It’s good for you!

Am I thrilled?  You better believe it!  Because of an anxiety disorder I cannot drink green tea at all, which leaves me with black for the most part, which has caffeine but also comes with its own positive health effects as well.  Two weeks ago I had a nasty upper respiratory thing going on, and I drank an entire box of organic Ceylon tea.  It tasted good, made me feel better, and my upper respiratory thing never got any worse and in fact is now gone.  I never took any OTC medications because I can’t, and I hate doing so, so I drank tea and blew my nose and rested extra when I could.  At night I would have a super strong cup of Owens Acres Christmas Eve tea before bed, the cinnamon really made a difference.  Yeah, I drank a lot when I was sick, an awful lot, but I think I saved myself from feeling worse and the infection turning into something much worse.  I work with people who are battling bronchitis and I do NOT want to go that route!

All right, now we have the second post:

http://owensacres.wordpress.com/2011/03/07/introducing-owens-acres-california-fruit-tisanes/

This had me running around the house.  Being lactose intolerant my entire life, my first beverage (other than soy milk) was a fruit tea a neighbor used to give me.  My mother didn’t believe in horribly sweetened kids juices and the like, but tea was acceptable, so I drank that more than anything else.  I guess that’s where my love of tea comes from.

Here’s a part of the Fruit Tea blog:

First teas/tisanes will feature:
California Persimmon, Pear, Apricot, and Pluots (cross between plum and apricot – my favorite)

Blended with sweet flowers including:
Calendula, Rosehips, Hibiscus, Heather, Chamomile, Blackberry leaf, Elderberry, Ginger, Sunflower petals, orange and lemon peel, Raspberry leaf, and of course, Lavender!

I haven’t quite sorted out the combinations, I’m still brainstorming this week!

I cannot even begin to imagine the sheer awesomeness of these, and how healthful!  The benefits from all the goodness is staggering, I quickly looked up the benefits of Heather, Lavender, Calendula and Ginger over at http://www.teabenefits.com and just imagine all of that goodness in a hot (or iced) flavorful cup of tea.

Its a small thing we can do for ourselves, drinking healthy beverages like tea, and tea is fairly easy to incorporate into your lifestyle.  Some folks are intimidated by loose leaf tea, I know I used to be, but not anymore.  I have different strainers and the like, but I also have these wonderful Japanese self fill tea bags I use as well.  I take some along in my purse wheneven I want tea at work, they are easier to pack than a tea ball.  Owens Acres sells them http://www.owensacres.com/TeaAccessories.html at a very reasonable price.
So lets drink up healthy!
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Was Digging Around the Trunk of My Car for a Pen

Inspired by my lipstick on a wineglass I attem...

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…when I found the lipstick I used to wear all the time in a tote bag.  Its the best color EVER on me, its described on the website for the brand as, “Beautiful bronze tones mixed with warm chocolate hues”.  And there’s gold sparkles in it as well.  Its a warm, beautiful color and looks so good on me!  I grabbed the lipstick (oh and I found my pen) and went back inside to work.

Now, this lipstick is from a direct sales cosmetics company, of which I used to wear all the time.  Sadly, its the same company that got me on the bandwagon for better products in our cosmetics.  That being said, I forgot myself for a moment.  Once I was back at my desk I put the lipstick on and preened into my compact mirror for a moment.  Man, what a color!  Did I look good!  Wow.

I didn’t have that lipstick on for more than five minutes when my lips started to burn.  I didn’t even consider my lips would be sensitive to chemicals like the rest of my face (never said I was smart) but it was awful.  I wiped it off as fast as I could, then I ran to the bathroom and WASHED it off.  When I got back to my desk I dug through my purse and found my natural lip balm .  That soothed my mouth immediately.  Talk about uncomfortable!

Owens Acres Natural Lip Balm-unflavored, but comes in mango, peach, cucumber, just to name a few!

Just in case anyone was wondering, no, I didn’t throw the lipstick away.  Believe me when I say I won’t wear it ever again, but now I am on the hunt for a like color that’s organic.  Then I got to thinking…did the lipstick bother me when I was wearing it, totally oblivious to what I was actually putting on my mouth?  I know certain products from the same line of cosmetics bothered me, the eye primer made my eyes water yet I kept using it, I had styes and odd eye infections the entire time I wore their mascara, and of course my skin revolted when I wore the mineral makeup, which was the end of the line for me.  Seriously, I wore this line of cosmetics for years and during that entire time did I wonder what I was putting on my face or why my eyes were always watering or I was putting topical ointment in my eyes all the time due to the weird issues I had?

 

None of these things were a wake up call for me.  NONE.  Now I shake my head and think wow, beauty was that important to me that I would go through that much discomfort before realizing what the issue was.  Now I love lipstick, I love THAT shade of lipstick, but the side effects are no longer worth it.

I had no idea digging around in the trunk of my car could be so eye opening.

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