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Meet LuckyVitamin: Your one stop shop for natural living

Meet LuckyVitamin: Your one stop shop for natural living

I wanted to share a new online retailer I came across recently, Meet LuckyVitamin: Your one stop shop for natural living.  LuckyVitamin is different than any online retailer I’ve used in the past.

*This post is sponsored by LuckyVitamin, thoughts and opinions are entirely my own.

I was so intrigued reading LuckyVitamin’s story!  It started as a pharmacy and has turned into an online natural wellness store.  A legacy that’s been passed down for 3 generations.   They have a passion for health, community, and spreading wellness.  

LuckyVitamin takes the guesswork out of living a natural lifestyle.  It’s your one stop shop for all things wellness.  From natural and organic foods, supplements, herbs, baby, health aids, exercise and more!  They literally have it all. 

One thing that I loved when shopping LuckyVitamin was how smooth the whole experience was.  They make it so simple with their easy to navigate website.  You can shop by health concern, by brand, department, by diet and they even offer a specialty tab for those who may have specific needs such as wanting products that don’t contain artificial fragrance.  They really have thought of it all!  

They also have a tab called “Deals” that indicates what sales and promos are happening.  Making sure you don’t miss a thing!

I love their mission statement!

Mission Statement:

 

Lucky Vitamin Review

LuckyVitamin’s Mission Statement.

 

They also have a new membership program called LuckyVitamin+ that I joined.  I was so excited to learn of all the perks that came when becoming a member!

You can become a member for $49.95 a year.  This includes so much!

 

Lucky Vitamin Review

LuckyVitamin takes your health to heart!

 

What A LuckyVitamin+ Membership Includes:

  • You get an extra 10% off savings that can be stacked with promotions and offers
  • Free standard shipping on orders over $25 (continental US only)
  • A certified personal Wellness Consultant
  • Member exclusive gifts
  • Content and other member-only perks

It’s so easy to become a LuckyVitamin+ Member!  You just add the membership to your cart when shopping and it automatically gives you your savings.  Check out all that the LuckyVitamin+ Membership offers here!

I love that you can also use other rewards with the membership which increases your overall savings.  

The wellness consultant is another huge perk of membership.  Being able to ask an expert about a product or diet really helps so much.  It can seem so confusing sometimes with labels and knowing really what the best option is.  LuckyVitamin takes the guesswork out of it all with wellness consultants.  I love that it’s actually a phone consultation too and not just by email- makes it so much more personable. 

 

Lucky Vitamin Review

In your order you get a copy of WellPower, a mini publication filled with health inspiration.

 

The community you gain from LuckyVitamin is also huge!  When you join you are invited to a members only community where you’re able to share healthy tips, recipes and learn from one another in your own health journey.  This is also where you can really get to know your wellness consultants.  

The membership really creates an environment for those wanting to take their health journey to the next level and get all they can from a natural lifestyle.  

Membership is kind of a no brainer!  The amount of savings and benefits you receive really makes such a difference.  Check out LuckyVitamin+ Membership here!

 

Lucky Vitamin review

I was so excited LuckyVitamin had some of my favorite collagen powder!

 

On my first order I bought some Primal Kitchen Collagen Powder.  I love knowing that they offer one of my favorite natural proteins.  Plus, I got it for such a deal!   My order was so easy to process and I received it quickly and intact.  

I can’t wait to shop from them again!  They really bridge the gap between so many stores for me and make it so easy to just shop in one place for everything!  I love knowing that I’m also saving time and money.  

Check out all that LuckyVitamin+ membership has to offer here!  

Have you placed an order with LuckyVitamin before?

 

Lucky Vitamin review

Sharing my LuckyVitamin Review on the blog.

May’s Natural Beauty Box Roundup

May’s Natural Beauty Box Roundup

A new month brings May’s Natural Beauty Box Roundup!  This month is a fun one and the savings are through the roof!  If you haven’t hopped on the natural beauty box train this month might be a good month to start.  We are seeing some of the best brands for a serious steal!

Beauty Heroes: Ayuna

 

Beauty Heroes May Discovery

May’s Beauty Heroes Discovery is one for the books! Ayuna is featuring their newest product Velo.

 

This month we are seeing another standout product from Ayuna.  If you’ve been receiving Beauty Heroes for a while then you’re totally familiar with this luxe natural beauty brand.  They deliver results driven skincare with clean ingredients.  Ayuna’s roots are in Spain where the products are made.  I had the pleasure of meeting one of the founders a couple years ago and she was delightful.  

Heroic Product: Velo- This is a new product release from Ayuna and it’s just so good.  At first you think it’s just a face cream but as you dive into this product you realize it’s so much more!  It’s filled with superhero ingredients from lactobacillus ferment, cocos nucifera, olive oil and trehalose to name a few.  Not only does it hydrate the skin but it also protects it from the environment and all it’s pollutants.  It does this by forming a film that help to keep pollution out.  It also helps balance your skin microbiome with probiotics.  The name Velo in Spanish means veil.  The idea is that Velo basically turns into your second skin.  Creating a smooth, even canvas that looks like your skin but better.  

What did I think?  A lot actually.  It really lives up to the hype.  It moisturizes my skin completely but also makes it look so much better.  There is a tint to it.  Nothing too much just a subtle tint that pulls your whole face together.  I actually just wore this by itself like a tinted moisturizer on some days and then on others when I wanted more coverage I touched up with some additional foundation. It really is such a unique product!  

Sidekick: The Facial- I was excited to see The Facial as this month’s sidekick.  I’m no stranger to this beauty.  I have used it in the past.  It seems so small to call it just a toner, because it does so much.  It’s like getting a facial but your in the coziness of your own bathroom and it takes 60 seconds.  Not only does it exfoliate but also balance and completely change your skin.  

You apply it to clean skin.  It feels like lotion to powder formula.  Feeling like a liquid at first but then creating a matte affect on the skin after.  It contains glutamic acid, lactobacillus ferment, apple cider vinegar, succinic acid and non stem cells just to name a few.  These ingredients work together to help exfoliate, calm inflammation and create a smooth even finish.  I was using this before for about a month and people kept complementing me on my skin.  I finally figured out it was The Facial that had changed in my routine. Results are everything!

Best part is you can get this fabulous box right now for such a steal!  This box is valued at $252  but you can snag it for $42.95.  This really is such stellar box- I wouldn’t be surprised if they sell out!  Hop on it now if you’re thinking of getting it. Get Beauty Heroes May Discovery here! 

 

Boxwalla

 

boxwalla review

This limited edition Boxwalla box is one for the books!

 

So technically Boxwalla does not have a box this month!  But is offering a limited edition box.  This box is definitely worth noting and I couldn’t wait to share with you!  It’s a sampling of natural perfumes from SIGIL.  The founder Patrick Kelly creates unique scents that are all unisex.  This is unlike other natural fragrances you’ve used- trust me!   They use essential oils, absolutes, CO2 extracts and house-made tinctures in a base of certified organix sugarcane alcohol. They actually remind me a lot of conventional fragrances but without the headache.  They are woodsy, warm and sophisticated.  Not just a blend of essential oils if you know what I mean.  

So how the Limited Edition Box works is you get to sample their 4 scents.  Then you pick your favorite and they send you a full size perfume of that scent.  It’s a crazy good value!!  The full size perfume is $120 value and the box itself is a $50 value.  This is such a great way for someone to be able to try several natural perfumes before having to commit.  One you receive the box you have 4 weeks to decide which scent suits you best.

My two favorites are Amor Fati.  This is a lighter perfume, which in my opinion is perfect for summer.  It has notes of Bergamot, Palo Santo, Green Pine Needles and Resinous Galbanum.  It changes as I wear it too- my hubs loved it.

My other fave is Solutio.  This feels light as well and a little sweet.  It has lime and citrus scents in it.  I like how fresh it is on.  Really awakens my senses as I wear it.

I can’t recommend this box enough!  So many people ask me about perfumes and this is a great way to be able to try them.  Get the box here!

 

Detox Box

 

Detox Box May

The Detox Box for May contains one of my favorite natural beauty facial oils!

 

This month it is all about Agent Nateur in the Detox Box.  Featuring a travel size deodorant stick in HOLI(STICK)No. 3 and a full size HOLI(OIL).  I’ve long been a fan of Agent Nateur’s HOLI(OIL) for while.  It was fun to see them in this month’s box, plus a travel sized deodorant!  

HOLI(OIL)- This frosted bottle contains a rich oil that smells like roses.  Not only does it help smooth skin and wrinkles but it also is extremely hydrating.  It doesn’t feel greasy at all and seeps into your skin, giving your face a radiance.  My skin looked restored.  I used this after several sleepless nights and it literally brought the life back into my skin.  It’s true to it’s name- giving you your youthful skin back!  There isn’t a long list of ingredients but the ones that are in there are effective.  I also love using this before makeup.  My foundation glides on.  Bonus- my husband can use it too!  

HOLI(STICK)No. 3-  This is great for travel, when you want to pack light.  I personally love Agent Nature’s HOLI(ROSE) Deodorant!  It’s even a fave of mine for a while.  Check it out here!  

This box has a value of $130 but you can get it for $55!  The beauty of the Detox Box is you don’t have to commit to any amount of months.  You can simply just buy this one time box!  Pretty awesome.  Get the box here!

 

May's Natural Beauty Box Roundup

Sharing May’s Natural Beauty Box Roundup on the blog!

Best Mother’s Day Gifts 2019

Best Mother’s Day Gifts 2019

Sharing my best mother’s day gifts 2019 with you on the blog.  Finding the perfect gift for your mom can seem daunting.  Trust me, I’ve been there. Why are moms so hard to buy for at times?  I can’t get by with a colored picture anymore.  🙂

So I rounded out my favorite natural gifts for moms.  Maybe your mom isn’t into natural living, well this is the perfect time to get I want all of Baleen’s jewelry! So chic!

her interest peaked.  I’ve found getting my mom natural gifts is a great way to introduce her to something she may not have known about but ends up loving.

I have some practical gifts and some just for fun gifts.  Either way you’ll be set for Mother’s Day!

 

best mother's day gifts

I want all of Baleen’s jewelry! So chic!

 

Baleen Jewelry

These handmade jewelry pieces are just so chic!  I’ve bought them as gifts for several friends.  Not only is the jewelry beautiful but also sustainable.  They us 99% recycled metal content, have a zero waste facility and their gift tags are recyclable as well as their gift boxes.  I love that everything is made in house.  You feel like you’re getting a special treasured piece of jewelry.  I love that their jewelry is nickel free as well.

Their pieces don’t lack style either.  They offer rings, necklaces, earrings and bracelets.  Trust me- you’ll want everything!  I can’t think of a more thoughtful way to honor your mom and also support a business doing so much good.  Check them out here!

 

best mother's day gifts 2019

This Follain Everything Soap makes a great addition to any kitchen sink or shower.

Follain Everything Soaps

I’ve been a fan of these Everything Soaps for a while.  They’re packaging is so chic and really makes a statement on any sink counter or shower/bath.  They’re amber glass bottles with attached pumps.  What’s so cool about them is that you can refill them with the soap at any Follain store.  They have large soap dispensers there.  Don’t live next to a Follain, no worries!  Just buy the bottle and when you need to refill it, just use another soap.  If you’re wanting a natural soap but don’t love the look of plastic bottles, this is a great alternative.  Check them out here!

 

best mother's day gifts 2019

True Botanicals takes the cake when it comes to best natural skincare line!

True Botanicals 

If you’re like most moms your skin could use a little tlc.  In comes natural beauty powerhouse True Botanicals.  This line delivers results when it comes to giving you your youthful glow back.  The formulas are filled with antioxidants that deliver nutrients that will repair free radical damage.

I love their renew line and Antioxidant Booster and Repair Serum.  They offer so many lines depending on what skin type you have.  Renew is more for dry/mature skin, Clear is more for those who suffer from acne flare ups, their Calm line is made for those who suffer from rosacea or irritated skin.  They even have products for pregnancy!  If you’r not sure what line would be good for you, check out their skincare quiz here.  Also, shop all their products here!

 

best mother's day gifts 2019

The Detox Box is one of my favorite natural beauty boxes delivered monthly!

 

The Detox Box

I love this box!  It delivers natural beauty to your doorstep each month.  What’s cool about this box is that it offers not only skincare products, but also hair, and makeup.  So you’re not overloaded with one beauty product.  They also always offer some of the best brands!  I’m always impressed with their selections.  A great opportunity for your mom to experience green beauty firsthand without having to wade through all the product choices. Plus, the value is insane!  The box is $49.99 but is always valued over $100.  Check out the box here!

 

best mother's day gifts 2019

These two are the best when it comes to cream blushes in natural beauty.

Cream Blush

If you’ve followed me for a little bit, you know I love a good cream blush.  Especially for those with mature skin.  Powder blushes can settle into fine lines and look cakey.  Cream blushes make your skin look dewy and moist, bringing back the youthful glow.  I love Beautycounter’s Cream Blush Stick and Kjaer Weis Cream Blushes.

 

best mother's day gifts 2019

Love these organic sheets for SOL Organix!

 

Organic Sheets

Who wouldn’t love getting a new set of organic sheets?!  I have sheets from SOL Organics and love them.  They are soft, organic and keep me cool at night.  Great for going into summer when you want a cooler sheet set for the warmer months.  Conventional sheets are so toxic!

Since we spend about a 1/3 of our life in bed it’s important to know what were sleeping on.  Cotton is one of the most heavily sprayed crops.  Being doused with synthetic fertilizers and pesticides.  However, that’s not the only thing we should be concerned about.  Sheets often contain formaldehyde, and toxic dyes too.  There are also toxic softeners that are used now on bedding, creating a recipe for a toxic sleep experience!  Trust me, you’re mom will thank you when she sees a new organic sheet set.  Check them out here!

 

best mother's day gifts 2019

Love knowing that I’m protecting myself from harmful radiation with this phone case.

Safe Sleeve Phone Case

I recently got myself a Safe Sleeve phone case and have been so happy with it!  Protecting yourself from radiation from EMFs is so important with all the exposure we are receiving today.  A phone emits a good amount of radiation, since we constantly have our phones near or on us, it’s important to know how to protect ourselves.  Getting a Safe Sleeve Phone Case is one great option.   With a Safe Sleeve Case you block over 99% of RF and 92% of ELF radiation.  A gift any mom would appreciate!  Check them out here!

 

best mother's day gifts 2019

These sunglasses have been a favorite!

Sunglasses

These Ray Ban sunglasses I got last year and I LOVE them!  They are so comfortable and stay on my face so well.  I always get so many compliments on them.  They are polarized too!  I love that I can put them up on my head too, and they don’t get caught in my hair- it’s totally the little things.  They also look super chic- which never hurts.  Check them out here!

 

best mother's day gifts 2019

Beautycounter’s Flawless in Five is a game changer when it comes to transitioning to natural beauty.

 

Flawless In Five

This is a great beginner set from Beautycounter for anyone who hasn’t made the jump into natural beauty.  It offers 6 staple makeup products.  A concealer, blush, lip gloss, mascara, eyebrow gel, and either Dew Skin- their tinted moisturizer with SPF 20 or their Tint Skin- A medium coverage foundation.  I can’t recommend this set enough!  It really takes the guesswork out of trying to get into natural beauty and also saves you a ton of money.  You’re mom will be looking great without the toxins!  Check out Flawless in Five here!

 

best mother's day gifts 2019

These Minted Calendars are such a great way to personalize a gift for your mom.

Minted Calendars

My sister makes my mom a calendar every year and I always think it’s such a great gift idea.  She puts all family members birthdays in the calendar and adds pictures from the previous year.  Needless to say my mom loves it!  Such a personalized gift, yet practical too.  Minted has so many chic designs too, makes it so easy to create one.  Check them out here!

Ok, those are my top picks for Mother’s Day gifts!  Did anything catch your eye?  What are you getting for your mom? I may have already bought my my a gift from the list above. 😉

 

 

best mother's day gifts 2019

Sharing all my favorite Mother’s Day Gifts on the blog.

 

Favorite Kitchen Tools and Gadgets

Favorite Kitchen Tools and Gadgets

So excited to share with you my favorite kitchen tools and gadgets.  Eating real food can seem daunting when you’re first starting out but I’ve found some of my favorite kitchen tools and gadgets that have made making real food so much easier.  

Welcome to the #betterforyoucrew! I’ve teamed up with my girls Lisa from This Organic Girl, Sarah from Whoorl, Kate from Root & Revel, Caroline from Olive You Whole and Kristina from Love & Zest to highlight green, yet effective food, beauty and lifestyle products that are rocking our natural mama worlds. This series will publish the last week of every month so check back for the latest. You can also search #betterforyoucrew on our blogs and Instagram to access the entire series. Wanna join in? Tag #betterforyoucrew on social with your picks. We want to see your faves too!  For last month’s post on Natural Hair Routine- check it out here.

Sometimes you just need a good kitchen tool or gadget to really help make the process so much smoother.  They can take you from dreading to cook, to getting excited about real food!  Which is what it’s all about- getting real food on the table.

 

A couple things to keep in mind-

  • I didn’t buy these all at once.  It was a gradual process.  So don’t feel like you need to get everything on the list unless you have an endless budget for kitchen tools and gadgets- which if you do, go girl!
  • Know what you would eat most.  I’ve slowly collected favorite tools and gadgets over the years as I’ve learned more about real food and realized what I eat pretty regularly.  For ex. I wouldn’t go out and buy a tool or gadget that is only going to be used once in a blue moon on Thanksgiving.  It’s just going to get annoying taking up space in your cabinet or on your counter.  Plus, it’s a waste of money. 
  • Invest in tools that help with foods you eat consistently. Instead, I would invest in items that you know are going to get a lot of bang for your buck.  I like to keep my kitchen minimalistic.  Then I can see what I have and use it, instead of being overwhelmed by clutter.  Trust me, you want counter space when you’re making real food!

 

Not every kitchen tool or gadget is going to work for you just because it works for someone else.  

You really have to know how you’re going to use it and if it serves you.  Plus, take in to account the time.  Some kitchen gadgets are cool but not practical.  For ex. making homemade pasta might be a great idea but realistically you need to figure out if that really is going to be happening on a weekly or even monthly basis.  

Also, keep in mind that it might be as simple as getting a good kitchen knife for yourself and not having 10 different choppers.  Know your kitchen personality.  I don’t like a lot of extras personally.  A good knife is gold for me but some people really love a quality chopper and the ease of it.  Don’t just assume one thing will work for you since it worked for someone else.  We’re all different.  From the amount of time we are willing to spend in the kitchen to what we make. 

Ok, now that you’re understanding your kitchen personality type and what you might lean towards.  Allow me to share my favorites with you.  These are tried and true!

 

 

favorite kitchen tools/gadgets

This Blendtec blender takes the cake when it comes to making the best smoothies!

 

Blendtec Blender

A high powered blender is a must in my book.  I’ve had this blender for almost five years now and I love it!  It works so well.  I had a Bullet before I had a Blendtec but felt like I was limited to what I could put in the blender and it wasn’t has high powered.  This blender can shred kale, and anything else until smooth and creamy.  I use it every single day.  Yep, you heard me right.  Sometimes a couple times a day.  This thing definitely gets a workout.  

I make a smoothie for my husband and I every morning in it.  I can’t recommend getting a high powered blender for smoothies alone.  Honestly, in my opinion it’s worth it.  The amount of money you save from making your own smoothies and the nutrients it provides your body makes such a difference.  It works for my lifestyle too as I mentioned earlier.  I’m a busy mom of two with a third on the way.  I work and try and balance it all.  Which we all know doesn’t really happen- balance is a nice thing to say but hard to achieve. 

Anyways, I love the blender for smoothies because it provides me a quick real food option.  It fits right into my lifestyle of wanting real food but also not having all the time in the world to make it happen.  I also love using it for making so many recipes.  Batters, puddings, really the list is endless.  I have the smaller jar too, for making nut butters, and sauces.  I love it too.  Since it’s smaller it makes it so easy to whip up a quick sauce or nut butter.  The larger jar just doesn’t allow for it in the same way.  If you’ve been on the fence about a high powered blender, allow this to be your invitation to get one!  It’s changed my life. Also, be sure to check out the refurbished blendtec blenders.  They save you a considerable amount of money and work great!  Check out my Blendtec here!

 

favorite kitchen gadgets/tools

This immersion blender costs less than $30 but is a game changer in the kitchen!

 

Immersion Blender

I know you’re probably thinking why are recommending an immersion blender after you just talked about your Blendtec blender.  Well friends this is used so much in my house and has become a staple since I got it.  It’s not even $30 but I can’t sing it’s praises enough!  

I would always have to add my hot soups to my large plastic blender and it bothered me.  Not only could I not stop thinking about all the plastic leaching into my soup, but the whole process of pouring the soup into the blender was cumbersome to say the least and usually it wouldn’t all fit.  Needless to say I finally used my sister’s Immersion Blender and my life was changed.  I literally remember thinking where has this been all my life?!  

I’m totally a late bloomer on so many levels so it made sense why I didn’t know about it.  Now I can easily plug it in and quickly blend up my soups in a matter of seconds to a smooth consistency.  No pouring or plastic leaching.  It’s so easy to clean too.  Just take off the attachment and rinse.  I use this for mashing cauli mash and making coconut cream whip cream real quick.  But really it changed the game for me when it came to soups.  I make soups often. It’s my bestie in the kitchen!  Get it here!

 

favorite kitchen gadgets/tools

Love my chef’s knife!

 

A Good Chef Knife

I’m totally not the girl with a knife for every vegetable, meat or fruit.  Just give me a good quality chef knife and I’m good to go.  It makes my life so much easier when I can quickly pull out my cutting board and chop up some veggies.  

I remember I had asked for a quality knife for Christmas years ago and my hubs delivered.  Even though I’m pretty sure he asked if that was really what I wanted a hundred times!  I mean when you’re the one doing majority of the cooking a good knife is worth it’s weight in gold!  He got me the Wusthoff Chef’s Knife from Williams Sonoma.  This knife can cut anything.  And that’s exactly how I use it- for anything.  

What’s cool about Williams Sonoma is they actually will sharpen your knife for free the first time.  If you’re a minimalist in the kitchen like me and haven’t invested in a good all purpose knife, this may be a good purchase for you!  Check out my Wusthoff Chef’s knife here.

 

favorite kitchen gadgets/tools

Almond Cow changes the game when it comes to making non-dairy milks!

 

Almond Cow

This is another gadget that I really thought would be unnecessary but I’ve come to love!  It makes creating nut milk so easy.  When I stopped drinking dairy milk I quickly was thrown into the world of non-dairy milks.  When I realized there wasn’t great options to buy I knew I would need to start making my own.  

I did make them but it was a tedious process compared to the Almond Cow.  It required a nut milk bag and blending, pressing- you know all the things that go into making real food.  When I discovered the Almond Cow it was game over.  Not only does the Almond Cow take away the blending process but also the pressing through a nut milk bag too.  

You add nuts or seeds to this colander, attach it to the Almond Cow device, add water, push a button and literally less than a minute later you’re left with creamy non-dairy nut milk- minus the crazy additives that store bought versions like to put in there.  It also neatly condenses the pulp you can use for making crackers or pancakes, or muffins- so many uses.  My non-dairy milk is creamier and easier to make each week thanks to this bad boy!  Use coupon code: GURLGONEGREEN for $15 off your purchase.  Check them out here!

 

favorite kitchen gadgets/tools

We’ve had this Breville Espresso Machine for 9 years and love it!

 

Espresso Machine

My hubs and I got this almost 9 years ago as a wedding present and we still LOVE it!!  It wasn’t cheap by any means but it’s lasted us 9 years.  If you’re serious about your coffee, then this is for you.  Nowadays, you can easily spend over $5 on a cup of coffee.  Well, once you start adding things like organic coffee, non-dairy milks, the price goes up even more. 

It may sound like a lot initially as an investment but it pays for itself so quick if you’re making yourself coffee everyday!  Imagine how much you would spend on coffee for a month if you bought it somewhere?  $150 a month…I did the math and that’s on the low end for most people.  You would quickly pay for this in several months time.  Plus, you would know exactly what’s going in your coffee.

I love that it’s stainless steel, so plastic isn’t leaching into my coffee. I also love that it grinds my beans right before the water goes through the espresso handle.  Making the espresso shots so fresh.  It also steams milk so nicely.  I am a Seattleite so maybe that has something to do with making the perfect cup of coffee, either way I can’t get enough of this espresso machine!  Check out the espresso machine here!

 

 

favorite kitchen gadgets/tools

Berkey is a must for me! Drinking filtered clean water is a non-negotiable.

 

Berkey Water Filter

This is definitely a must in my opinion when it comes to kitchen gadgets.  We all need water and filtering your water is so important to avoid the common contaminants.  Tap water can contain fluoride, bacteria, pesticides, viruses, chlorine chloramines, heavy metals and more. Berkey filters out these contaminants and more, plus has testing done on their purification process.  

I recommend getting the Big Berkey for most people, as you want to have extra for cooking too.  If you’re single you could get by with the travel Berkey.  Check out all the Berkey’s here!

 

 

favorite kitchen gadgets/tools

The instant pot will stretch your time in the kitchen so much more!

 

Instant Pot

I finally caved two years ago and bought an instant pot and I have to say it was the best investment!  As a busy mom this is kind of the best gift I could give myself.  I use it for so many things.  From hard boiling eggs, making soups, cooking rice, cooking whole chickens, making shredded meat from beef and chicken and making steel cut oats.  There are so many things you could use it for.  It cuts the time in half for everything and does it all for you. 

I love cooking a whole chicken in it for the week.  It cooks in 35 minutes!  Then I’m left with great broth for soups.  It’s really such a great investment.  I have the 8 quart and it has been perfect for my family of 4.  I can’t tell you how many times I’ll throw some random ingredients from meat, veggies, some broth and spices and it tastes so good.  

It takes all the time out of cooking food in a slow cooker and does it in half the time.  I use this at least twice a week for something.  It might sound like one more thing but really, once you get the hang of it, it’s worth it’s weight in gold! Get it here!

 

favorite kitchen gadgets/tools

If you’re a fan of sparkling water then you need this glass soda stream in your life!

 

Soda Stream For Sparkling Water

This is definitely an extra but one that both my hubs and I love!  It makes sparkling water.  The particular model I have uses glass bottles and not plastic.  What I would recommend, since you don’t want plastic chemicals leaching into your water. I like it because you can use filtered water.   Sparkling water you buy from the store is typically not filtered and you don’t know where it’s from.  I love knowing my water is filtered.  We take our sparkling water pretty serious around here! 

I love adding lemon or lime to it and having a little refresher.  Plus, it saves so much money!   Check it out here!  

 

favorite kitchen gadgets/tools

This food processor is so powerful and makes whipping up recipes so easy!

 

Cuisinart 14 Cup Food Processor

This food processor is amazing. I got it a year ago and I’m not sure how I lived without it. I thought I could use my blender for everything but really the food processor is different and does things the blender can’t because of it’s wide bowl. I use this for my raw veggie breads, making paleo granola, bars, hummus, random recipes- so much.  But I think in the beginning you can get by with just a high speed blender.  Also, I want to note that the 14 cup food processor is the one I would recommend.  My sister has a 10 cup and it’s not as powerful, especially for raw veggie breads.  Get the food processor here!

 

Also, don’t forget to check my other natural lifestyle bloggers favorite kitchen gadgets and tools too:

 

Don’t forget to share what you’re using for favorite kitchen gadgets or tools on Instagram using the hashtag #betterforyoucrew!  

 

 

favorite kitchen gadgets/tools

Sharing my favorite kitchen gadgets and tools.

How To Survive The First Trimester

How To Survive The First Trimester

So you might be wondering how to survive the first trimester and you’ve come to the right place because I’m going to share all my secrets with you.  Ok, they’re not really secrets but things that have helped me to continue living my life, which is pretty huge when you’re in your first trimester!

If you’ve been pregnant than you totally understand what I’m talking about.  

Here are just a few of the common symptoms first trimester mamas can feel:

  • Nausea
  • Tired- ALL THE TIME
  • Food Cravings and Food Aversions
  • Depressed
  • Not Motivated
  • Weight Gain
  • Mood Swings
  • Headaches
  • Heightened Sense Of Smell
  • Frequent Trips To The Bathroom
  • Acne
  • Out Of Breath
  • Swollen Breasts
  • Changes In Sex Drive

 

first trimester survival

My bump is already popping with the third baby at 15 weeks!

 

I like to describe it as being on a roller coaster.  One minute you’re up and the next minute you’re down.  To be honest, sometimes I feel like two different people.  There’s the me before pregnancy, and then there’s the me during pregnancy.  There’s just so many changes happening all at once.  You want to just feel normal and carry on but that is anything but how it is.

I called this blog post how to survive pregnancy in the first trimester because that’s really how I feel.  I know so many people who don’t have symptoms or feel amazing throughout their pregnancy which is awesome.  But it hasn’t been my case.  I literally feel like I’m in survival mode.  Everything that came easy to me before feels 10 times harder.  Whether it’s doing laundry, making dinner, cleaning the house, doing my job, or being a parent to my kids.  It just takes more head space and energy than before. 

Suffice to say babies really can take it out of you.  I’ve experienced all of the symptoms in the first trimester listed above.  Overall, the  fatigue is real.  I don’t know how many times I would literally just end up taking a nap when I should have been blogging or cleaning or anything besides napping.  I’m not a napper at all, so taking a nap is just all around foreign to me.  But when I’m pregnant sometimes it’s the best medicine.  

I’m going to be sharing my experience and tips and tricks throughout my pregnancy that really help me.  Trust me, if you’re reading this and you’re not a mama yet, don’t worry!  Pregnancy looks so different on everyone and you might not experience these symptoms at all.  It also usually gets so much better as you get further along in pregnancy, especially nausea. 

I created a list of natural resources that have really helped when it comes to surviving the first trimester.  I hope these help you like they did me!  After all, us mamas have to stick together. 🙂

 

First trimester survival

Just a few of my favorite things in this first trimester!

 

First Trimester Natural Resources-

 

  • Brooklyn Crafted Extra Spicy Sugar Free Ginger Beers- These have helped me in a massive way with my nausea.  My friend Kate from Root and Revel had recommended them to me.  They’re made with just a few real food ingredients and sweetened with stevia not sugar so you’re not getting a crazy high sugar spike.  Plus, they have real ginger in them so they help ease nausea.  They’re carbonated too which is huge for me!  I love carbonation when I’m pregnant and these definitely hit the spot when I’m needing something fizzy.  I usually have one in the morning when my nausea is at it’s peak.  Get them here!
  • Real Food For Pregnancy Book- This book was recommended to me by my friend Dr. Ben Lynch.  He’s a research doctor and knows his stuff.  It has been such a resource for me!  I’ve read pregnancy books before that have talked about nutrition but don’t have a lot of evidence to back up their claims.  This book really gives so many references!  It debunks so many of the common pregnancy nutrition guidelines people have been taught and turns them on their heads.  Lily does such a thorough job of laying out what you should eat during pregnancy and why.  She even goes into meal plans, recipes and supplement advice.  I can’t recommend this book enough if you want to optimize your pregnancy. Get the book here!
  • Seeking Health Supplements- These supplements have been taken on the daily by me.  Supplementing is so important these days since are soil is so depleted and even if you’re eating a whole foods diet you can miss key nutrients.  From Seeking Health I take their Optimal Prenatal, or their Optimal Prenatal Chewable,  their Optimal Fish OilVitamin B Complex Plus, NAC, ProBiota HistaminX,  and Optimal Magnesium.  It’s so important to take folate instead of folic acid.  Watch this video my friend Dr. Ben Lynch did.  So insightful!  
  • Elite Fuel Iron Supplement- This has been the best iron supplement I’ve found.  It literally has increased my iron levels quicker than any other iron supplement.  I can’t recommend it enough!  Get it here!
  • Elite Fuel Vitamin D3+K2 Supplement- This is a liquid Vitamin D3 +K2, I love that it’s a liquid.  It’s so easy to take. Get it here!
  • Podcasts:  I’ve done two podcasts about fertility and conceiving and what to supplement, eat and so on in pregnancy.  You can check them out here and here.  Such great resources!

 

first trimester survival

This is the best stuff! Sweetened with stevia and contains real ginger.

 

Other Tips-

 

  • Make breakfast ahead of time- I’ve found for me that having some foods prepped has helped me a lot.  In the mornings my nausea is at an all time high.  One of my favorite foods to have on hand is homemade granola.  Then I just add some to 100% grass-fed organic greek yogurt.  I really like the brand Maple Hill.  They have an organic 100% grass-fed greek yogurt that’s amazing. I just eat plain to avoid the extra sugars.  This greek yogurt I’ve found has the best texture!  The combination of the fat and protein with some carbs has been just the ticket for me.  It helps to curb my nausea and keeps me feeling full a couple hours. Plus, it sounds good which is half the battle!  If you have been pregnant before you know this is key.  Knowing I have this quick breakfast in the morning to go too has been huge.  It really has made a huge difference in helping me operate smoother in the mornings.  Then I’ll make a green smoothie a couple hours later.  But right away I need something the moment I wake up. Scroll to the bottom for my granola recipe. 
  • Chicken and Egg Salad- For whatever reason I’ve been craving both of these throughout my pregnancy.  I’ve made them both and then we also have local place that uses good ingredients that I feel great about ordering from.  I’ll make some for the week and store it in the fridge for lunches.  It’s so nice already having something pre-made on hand.  I don’t follow a particular recipe- kind of a rebel like that but there are a few ingredients I use instead of conventional ones that are important to note.  Instead of regular mayonnaise I use Primal Kitchen’s Mayo- super clean ingredients.  I like adding dill to my egg salads- love me some dill!  For the chicken salad I put celery, chicken, pecan, and apple a lot of times.  It really depends on what I have on hand.  Then I chop up some spinach leaves and toss it all together with the chicken or egg salad.  SO good!  If you want a good recipe I would up opt for one that’s paleo- usually they have pretty simple, clean ingredients.  Here’s a chicken salad recipe and an egg salad recipe.
  • Soda Stream- If you follow me then you know I love some good carbonation.  Well it’s at an all time high when I’m pregnant!  The carbonation really helps to ease my nausea.  I love having this glass soda stream.  It keeps me fully supplied with sparking water.  I love knowing that my carbonated water is filtered since I use the water from my Berkey.  They have the plastic bottles but I prefer the Soda Stream that use glass bottles.  Plastic bottles can leaky unwanted chemicals into my water.  Check out the glass Soda Stream here!
  • Cold Fresh Fruit- All my pregnancy I’ve craved fresh fruit, this one no different.  I loved having organic strawberries, organic organges, organic blueberries and organic raspberries on hand.  Costco has some of the best deals for organic fruit.  I’m pretty sure I had 2-3 Cara Cara oranges a day!  
  • Smoothies- I find it hard to eat my normal amount of veggies when I’m pregnant in the first trimester.  Texture, smell and taste are all off for me.  I’m grateful for smoothies!  These help me pack a ton of veggies in and just slurp them down instead of having to chew them and gag- just being real. I would pack spinach, celery and cucumber in my smoothies and then add some healthy fats like cashew butter, some fiber with chia seeds, some superfood powders like pomegranate powder, camu powder, açaí powder, and half a banana. I would add a cup of coconut milk and blend up!  Then once blended add my protein powder.  Activ Whey Goat Whey Protein is the BEST protein!  If you haven’t tried it you need to get on it.  I personally know the owner and founder and love how authentic he is.  He sources from grass-fed goats.  Can’t recommend it enough!  Get it here!  
  • Eggs- I hadn’t been eating eggs because my food sensitivity test showed I was sensitive to them.  However, when pregnant I’ve been eating them because of the choline content in them.  Choline is so important in pregnancy. If you want to understand more about Choline check out a podcast I did with Sarah Morgan a functional nutritionist.
  • Primally Pure Deodorant- I knew I needed to find a natural deodorant that was safe during pregnancy because your underarms soak up so much of what you put on them.  I was happy to find Primally Pure and know that they are completely safe to use during pregnancy.  They have done extensive research to ensure that their products are clean.  I love the Blue Tansy and Charcoal Deodorant- so does my husband!  Get them here!
  • True Botanicals Pregnancy Skincare Line- I love knowing that I can still have an active natural skincare line that is still safe for myself and baby during pregnancy.  If you’ve followed me you know that I love True Botanical’s Antioxidant Booster and Repair Serum- holy grail products in natural beauty.  Well, True Botanicals has a whole skincare line dedicated to pregnancy.  Excluding the ingredients you don’t want in your products while pregnant, yet still creating an amazing skincare line.  I’ve been using their Calm Pure Radiance Oil and Vitamin C Booster. Since True Botanical’s Antioxidant Booster isn’t recommend for pregnancy I’ve been swapping it out for the Vitamin C Booster. Check out all their pregnancy safe products here!
  • Beautycounter- Another safe line for pregnancy is Beautycounter.  I trust their line completely with all of their third party testing and stringent screening process for ingredients.  I have been using their body butter– so luxurious and crucial for my growing belly!  I also have been using their body wash and their shampoo and conditioner.  Plus, their Countermatch Recovery Sleeping Cream.  I love knowing I can literally just go to their website and not think twice about picking up a product when I’m pregnant.  Shop all of Beautycounter’s products here!  This is an excerpt taken from their website:
Yes. All of Beautycounter’s products are safe to use during pregnancy and nursing. We screen every ingredient for safety, keeping those especially vulnerable—like pregnant women and babies—in mind.
If you have specific medical concerns, we always advise consulting a physician.

 

chocolate granola recipe

This granola recipe is SO good! It is a spin off of Purely Elizabeth’s chocolate granola but with less sugar and more good fiber!

 

Chocolate Granola Recipe-

  • 3 Cups Gluten Free Organic Oats(I like One Degree Oats since they’re glyphosate free too)
  • 1 Cup Quinoa Flakes
  • 1/2 Cup Melted Coconut Oil
  • 1/2 Cup Ground Chia Seeds
  • 1/4 Cup Maple Syrup
  • 1/2 Cup Cacao Powder
  • 1/2 Cup Lily’s Chocolate Chips(stevia sweetened)
  • 1/2 Tsp. Cinnamon
  • 1/2 Tsp. Sea Salt

*Combine all ingredients in a bowl and then spread on a cookie sheet.  Cook at 325 for 15 minutes and then stir and cook for 10 more minutes.

That sums up some of my tips, what are some of your tips for surviving the first trimester?  Leave me a comment below.

 

First Trimester Survival

Sharing how I survive the first trimester. All my tips and tricks!

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