My toolbox when I’m not 100%

I woke up with a throat on FIRE Saturday morning. I have learned to not wait to see if I need help getting healthy. I JUMP on it! And then even if I am feeling better, I keep using all the things for a few days. Another thing to note…when using essential oils and nutrition for your body, use it often! Give your body all the goodness!!! Do not expect that one use is going to be magic.

My toolbox when I’m not 100%:

  • Vitamin C (YL Super C Chewables)
  • Minerals (YL Mineral Essence)
  • Ningxia Red
  • Thieves Vitality/Thieves Essential Oil
  • Lemon Vitality/Lemon Essential Oil
  • Local Raw Honey
  • Elderberry Syrup (although I don’t have any now)
How I use them:
  • Super C Chewable 3-4 times a day.
  • 2 dropperfuls of Mineral Essence to a shot of Ningxia Red 2X a Day
  • I rub diluted Thieves on my neck whenever I think of it (hopefully multiple times an hour, but sometimes it goes a few hours)
  • I make a tea every 3-4 hours and wake up at least once at night for more
    • 1 tsp honey + 2 drops thieves vitality + 2 drops lemon vitality in the bottom of a mug
    • stir that together
    • add hot water
    • I stir it before adding the hot water to keep the essential oils diluted in the water.
  • Drink a tsp of Elderberry Syrup 3-4 times during the day too
Why I use them:
  • Gary Young once said, “Show me a sick person and I’ll show you someone deplete in minerals.”
  • Ningxia Red has more antioxidants than any drink I’ve ever known!  I drink more when I need more immune support!
  • The thieves tea soothes me like nothing else.  It’s an immune booster and I just love what it does for me!
  • Elderberry Syrup has different antioxidant benefits than Ningxia Red.  It’s an extra oompf!
Finally – Listen to your body.  Rest when you need to rest. Figure out what others might be able to do for you. Sleep as you can!

And also, don’t eat the sugar. It really weakens the immune system!

Where to get the products?
Members, get them from your virtual office. You will need your user name or member ID. If you don’t know that information, just shoot me a message and I’ll help you find it!

If you are not a member, ask the friend who introduced you to essential oils. He/she can help you get them! If that friend is me or you happened up on this by accident, then contact me, I’d be happy to help you out!

Renee’ from The Oily Dream!

Parenting lessons from a bike ride.

Picture this with me if you will…a 9 year old with the her long, blonde hair blowing in the wind, no helmet, riding a bicycle down the middle of a 4-lane county highway as if she owned the road without a care in the world.
waller tx hwy
This was the highway!
That was me. In 4th grade. No one wore helmets in the early 80s.  I didn’t know that it wasn’t appropriate to ride down the middle of the street. I was footloose and carefree. No one ever told me that it wasn’t safe and I didn’t have the common sense or street smarts to know better.
My brother saw me and told my mom. When I got home, I got a big ol’ whoopin’ and yelled at.
I remember that moment to this day because I was incredibly hurt because I didn’t know better. I got in trouble for something I truly didn’t know was wrong. I didn’t mean to be bad. I didn’t mean to do a stupid thing. I just didn’t know.
I was allowed on that road and allowed to be gone as long as I was home before the streetlights came on.  And even with the whoopin’, she didn’t tell me WHY I shouldn’t be riding down the middle of the street.  My 9 year old memory remembers pain, and the feeling of “the nerve of her.”

I don’t hold that moment against my mom.  She was scared out of her wits as I totally could have died!  I’m thankful today for my brother tattling and for being redirected.  BUT, it is an example of how a child just doesn’t see things through the eyes of an adult.

I took this method of parenting with me.  I expected my children to listen because I said so not because they understood.

I’ve been learning a new behavior for quite some time.  It’s never too early or too late to ask good questions and help our children express themselves.  My teenagers are thankful I am learning a new way.

Some things I have learned about of parenting.

  1. Don’t make assumptions.
  2. Do more listening.
  3. Most things are not an emergency.
  4. Take time to make decisions.
  5. Questions or phrases that help a lot:
    1. How does this make you feel?
    2. It’s ok to feel _____.
    3. It’s not ok to ________.
    4. I’m so sorry your feeling _________.  Tell me more.
    5. Are you ready for advice?
    6. I am hearing that you just need me to listen right now.
    7. When you are ready _______.
    8. Oh, you didn’t know that you _________.
  6. Use the words “could or I wish” instead of should. Should assumes prior knowledge or ill behavior.
  7. Their “good life” is not my responsibility.  I need to let go of my personal dreams for their lives.
  8. #5 requires me to let them make choices that could affect their future EVEN when I can see consequences I don’t like.

In the book Losing control, and Liking it, I have learned that each of us have exactly 3 truths in life.

  1. Freedom to make choices.
  2. Freedom to make right and wrong choices.
  3. Consequences that come from those right and wrong choices

We have great influence over our children.  More influence than anyone else.  How we choose to respond to situations not only affects them in this moment but for a lifetime to come.  Sometimes that influence comes from consequences to the first two rules, but more often than not, it is in the ways in which we respect our children and our spouse.

The memories of this bike ride help me to remember that no matter my child’s age, I don’t want to make an assumption that they know what they should know.  Sometimes they need to figure it out on their own, but sometimes I need to take the time to explain things.  A good ol’ whoopin’ and yelling might leave an impression, but I hope that I’m leaving some good impressions that last for generations.


You Want ME to Speak on Nutrition and Exercise?!!!

A real conversation between Ray and I when I was asked to speak on nutrition and exercise, “I am not an expert in nutrition and exercise.”

“Are you kidding me? You have spent hours and hours over the course of years studying nutrition and exercise.  Why do you think you are no expert?”

This begs a question for me.  “Do you have to have a formal education, degree, or certification to be an expert?  I am not an ‘nutritionist’ and I am not a ‘personal trainer.’ In fact, I know how much I don’t know, have, and would turn to those experts for advice on many, many things.”

On the other hand, I’ve had doctors, nutritionists, and personal trainers come to me for advice too.  And so, yes, I am here to talk about nutrition and exercise not as an expert but as a woman who cares about health!

Here’s what I know.

We will never have it all right, and we can never know all the answers.  Every single person’s body, needs, and abilities are different. The theories are too vast. BUT…we can always make our own best choices today with the knowledge we have.  And we can have grace for ourselves when we do not.  Tomorrow is always a new day!

Every single one of us wants a healthy life.  Health used to be something that I thought I understood, but as with everything else in life, I have learned that health has many different meanings.  

The truth is that wherever we are, each of us want to be healthier.  How do you do that? 

How do you eat an elephant_Make one choice at a time.  I started about 15 years ago with a New Year’s resolution.  That resolution was to try one new vegetable each month. I didn’t really like vegetables back then and that was a HUGE goal for me.  I have since learned to LOVE vegetables and typically plan my meals around vegetables as the main source of food. I’ve learned to reach WAY beyond salads.  Although salads are yummy too!

Since the days of hating vegetables, I have tried something new each January to add or take something away from my life to move one step closer to health.  Sometimes that is exercise. Sometimes it is a personal growth area. Sometimes it is food. One year it was to rid our home of plastics. I have found that by doing one thing at a time, I find more success in long term change.  That’s not to say there haven’t been pushes towards big change. But the long term changes always stick when I do one thing at a time!

Life Matters Daily HabitsThis photo is a list of personal daily goals.  Every day that I accomplish most of the things on this list, I have a much better day all around.  The most difficult for me to achieve daily is laughter, water, and intentional God time. I spend time with God daily, but I often “fit it in” rather than to take the time to ‘sit with him.’  (even as I type this, my Bible and journal are to the left of my screen waiting for my attention – yikes) What about you? What intentions do you have that you find the most difficult to accomplish?

I was specifically asked to talk about nutrition and exercise in a 10 minute block of time which took me 17 — oops.  Rather than to just leave it in a video, I am writing my long notes here to share with you in long form.  Each of the sections below could be there own one hour or even semester long class in and of themselves. My notes are from my head. I’ve done tons of research, taken classes, and have benefited from many who have gone before me.  I don’t have references at this time, but if any of the topics speak to you, I encourage you to do your own research. One of my favorite learning experiences of all time was a semester long class I did with my daughter Emma from Food Renegade.

Here’s the video whose content is similar but NOT the same!

Let’s talk about Nutrition

1. The thing I have learned more than anything is that WATER is the most important part of our nutrition.  A minimum of 2 liters of water a day is going to help all the systems of your body. Better sleep, healthier skin, more balanced hormones, less hunger, beat the sugar cravings, increased oxygen, and so many more benefits come from this ONE FREE thing!

Some tricks I have learned to get my water intake up include:

  • I drink from a 1 liter water bottle.  If I drink 2 a day, I have my minimum water intake
  • Adding citrus essential oils to my water gives me a flavor burst AND I also know it is detoxing my body and lifting my spirits!
  • Sometimes I drink a liter quickly.  Even though this is not the most recommended, I figure it’s better than not getting my water in.

2.  Two-Thirds of our food intake should be Fruits and Vegetables (with vegetables being in higher portion than fruit).  I have learned to love vegetables steamed, grilled, sauteed, chopped and added to meat, and so many more ways. For most of us, we are not going to get enough fruits and vegetables in our diets, so supplements and healthy snacks become important.

  • Dice mushrooms and add them up to 50% into your ground meat — you won’t even ningxia redtaste the difference but you WILL get some great nutrients.
  • Take 30 minutes once a week to chop up vegetables for the week and then you can add them to most anything you are making.
  • Drink 2-4 ounces of Ningxia Red daily (notice the graphic which shows the value of fruits and vegetables contained in just 2 oz)
  • Take multigreens capsules
  • Drink a Pure Protein Complete or Balance Complete Shake full of superfoods that will fill you up and give you amazing nutrients.
  • Enjoy the Protein Power Bites
  • Pack boiled eggs, carrots, celery, and nuts as snacks and bring them along with you.
  • Don’t forget Enzymes and Probiotics to help your body break down the nutrients of the foods and help you get the most benefit from them!

3.  Choose whole, real food whenever possible.  There is just no replacement for the God-given, grown foods packed full of nutrients.  Do your best to avoid prepackaged foods.

4. Good fats are GOOD for you!  Olive oil, avocado oil, and coconut oil are my personal favorites.  They are the only cooking oils you will find in our home. Seed, corn, soy, and canola oils are NOT good for you.  This is another reason we avoid prepackaged foods. Most prepackaged foods use all of these cheaper, not good for you oils.

  • Another way to be sure you are getting good fats is getting supplements that have them.  OmegaGize and Olive Essentials are two products that have great benefits.
  • This is especially important for brain function!!!

Let’s Talk Exercise

There are a ton of excuses to not fit exercise into my daily life but they are ALL excuses.  When I make it a priority, there is ALWAYS time! No matter your stage of life or your budget, you can find a solution to any excuse.  

  • Time – multitask – walk while on a meeting; drop kids at an activity and walk; wake up 30 minutes early or go to bed 30 minutes later; say ‘NO’ to something less important
  • Injury – unless you are strictly on bedrest, there is some exercise you can do even when injured.  Yep, I’m speaking to my often injured, self-pitied self here! Swim, walk, bike, arm row, arm weights, leg weights, head lifts, bridges….there’s something!
  • Kids – have them join you or swap childcare with someone else
  • Money – soup cans, body weight, and putting your two feet in front of you count
  • I don’t want to – well, at least your being honest.  I will admit that in 2013, this was actually a prayer of mine.  “God, I want to want to exercise 5 times a week.”  Guess what, I do.  I WANT to exercise.  When I don’t, I don’t like it.  So, being honest with yourself is a great place to start!


  • Ningxia Red honestly helps me sleep AND gives me energy – it’s a win-win – I need less sleep and when I’m asleep, I sleep deeper – it easily gives me 30 extra minutes a day
  • Using oils to help stretch – Aromaease, Ravintsara, and Frankincense essential oils are all great to breathe in and stretch into
  • Weight Lifting – a drop of Valor essential oil under the tongue to increase your ‘can do’, Panaway and Peppermint essential oils on your muscles before and after will help your muscles relax and prepare
  • Cardio – put RC or Raven across your sinuses to breathe deeper; put peppermint on the back of your neck to cool down; bring Panaway with a roller or Deep Relief to roll on sore muscles as you need it during a workout
  • Nutrition – You want a drink that is going to hydrate, replenish, and repair muscles before, during, and after your workout.  I personally use Aminowise for this. I LOVE IT!  For long-distance or competition, you’ll definitely want Ningxia Nitro for an extra boost along the way too!

I believe with all of my being that health is a Mind – Body – Spirit connection.  When one area of our life is not healthy, it’s hard for any other part to be healthy as well.  Take a moment and answer this question – for yourself or for all of us –

What is one thing you can do for your mind?
What is one thing you can do for your body?
What is one thing you can do for your spirit?

Take the time to make a plan for each of these areas.  Implement them one at a time and watch yourself grow in health!