An Excerpt a Day – Day 1

I finished with 3,190 words. Though, I did start with 494 words, written in July when the idea came. I had to hold the idea close, as it peaked around corners and lifted the covers, screaming, “Write me!” And, now the voice is being let out, screaming past the daily average of 1,667, and my own personal goal of 2,500 words.

“Let’s brush our teeth!” She exclaimed as she led the children to the family bathroom. She kept a second toothbrush here so they could all brush their teeth together, modeling good hygiene. “Remember, 15 seconds each side, top, and bottom!” She was amazed she found the courage to make these monotonous things a game, so the children would have fun and see the joy in even the smallest things. It took so much energy to put on this face when all she wanted to do was crawl under a rock. It was only 8:30 am.

How to use the new dōTERRA Website

Did you know that dōTERRA has built a new interface for buying the oils we love? Though it’s pretty easy to log in, change can bring a tinge of confusion. So, I thought I’d do a quick rundown in case the confusion rests with you.

If you find yourself with this email:

Then, congratulations! You are on the new system. Your login has been simplified, though I appreciate it might take some getting used to.

First, bookmark www.doterra.com. Second, when you want to order your next favorite oil, all you do is go to dōTERA’s main website and click on the word “login” in the upper right-hand corner. Enter your Member ID and password. If you need help with either of these, and you’re on my team, contact me. Or, you can always call ((800) 411-8151) or email (service@doterra.com) dōTERRA Customer Service.

Next, you see the shop screen. You can edit your existing Loyalty Reward Purchases (LRP, our monthly auto-ship so you never miss your vitamins!).

Yes! I have three LRP orders right now. No, I don’t order all these things every month. Each “cart” serves as a placeholder for things I want (like an inventory check) or my monthly order. I touch these once or twice a month to make sure things are as they should be, but mostly I let them go until I am ready to buy my oils.

Just click “edit” on the order you want to change. The “quick add” box is below your existing items in your cart, now. The process buttons are on the right. Hopefully, you will enjoy the larger, cleaner interface.

I like to keep tabs of the points I have. If you do too, you’ll find that in “account profile”. You will notice that where the “login” link was, it has been replaced with your name and a down arrow. “Account profile” is one of the options to select, when you click on the down arrow.

That’s all there is to know about using the new system. Please contact me if you have any questions!

Happy ordering!

30 Days of Listening

Have you ever heard the quote, “Most people do not listen with the intent to understand; they listen with the intent to reply”?

Do you think we have a listening problem in our society?

I do. I think we have a listening problem – with each other, with our communities, with our world.

Steve R. Covey wrote about that, often, in his book The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People. He explained that we have a need to be understood, but we reply first instead of understanding! We need to learn to listen, to understand. And, we need to lead by example.

I invite you to practice with me. Join me in 30 Days of Listening. I will gift you the experience of being listened to. You can talk to me about what’s on your heart, and from that, we will both be more connected to each other, to our family and friends, and more prepared to share that with our world.

Sign up today! I am looking to fill up December with listening!

https://michellelasley.acuityscheduling.com/schedule.php?appointmentType=4301361

PCOS and Me

I was (clinically) diagnosed a few years ago with Poly-cystic Ovarian Syndrome. I had been working to get a diagnosis for almost 20 years. Suddenly, the protocol changed, and I got the diagnosis I thought I wanted.

But what did it mean for my care? Nothing changed with my healthcare providers. I added it as a note to my medical record. We didn’t do any more tests. No further counseling, support, advice, was given. Okay, you have this diagnosis, it explains some things, have a great day.

All I knew is that my untested hormones were likely out of whack, and it could be used to explain some things I don’t like about myself. (Yes, Byron Katie, I’ll get to that work later.)

But what was I supposed to do with that information? Where were my hormones supposed to be? How does PCOS come into my life? Why do I have it? Should I care? What should I do about it?

When I got the diagnosis, I also had my oils. There are two blends for women that I immediately began using. They are known to support hormone regulation, and I had a supposed hormone disruption.

One of my oil team members recently found an expert on PCOS! So, I did the webinar, and then I was able to participate in an intro call. Sara, of Conceive with Joy, works with women affected by PCOS. Largely, she focuses on women who want to conceive. Yet, all women who need healing, she would be open to talking to, to see if she could support.

I couldn’t believe how much relief I got in a 45-minute call. Sara validated where healthcare has failed me. She validated that I deserve to have another way of living. She validated that there is hope on the other side.

We started with a meditation. There was no prompt, it just was. I applied melaleuca, and later told Sara I did so. Melaleuca is the oil of energetic boundaries. This helps me to keep healthy boundaries and open to hearing new things.  We practiced clear, deep breathing, taking intentional moments to make ourselves present to the call. Of course, social media, computers in general, and phones were all off or silenced. Across the land, we were connected. We expressed gratitude for both showing up, and we came back into awareness.

We talked about PCOS symptoms. We talked about the true test for knowing (get the testosterone checked!). We talked about things that I’ve experienced outside of PCOS that could be related. We talked about trauma, and how trauma can be something traumatic, or at the time it could be something mundane, not fully taking in how its affecting our every day. We talked about how memories are stored and where healing could happen.

Sara got her start as a doula, and she has been loving on women and healing women for close to ten years. She has the heart and compassion to lead women through a PCOS healing journey. I cannot wait until I can work with her.

Life of Toxicity

Do you read my essential oil newsletter? In it, I talk a lot about removing toxins. I talk about removing toxins from our bodies, from our homes, and even suggest removing them from our minds (toxic energy). But, why? Let me take you on a journey, starting with lunch with a friend, recently.

We were talking about our respective businesses in health, and she started to ask me about how to make laundry less toxic, and what essential oils can be used. I had to pause and take a step back. The oils are awesome, helpful, and can do so many things, certainly, but we must step backward first.

  • What kind of clothing are you wearing? Synthetics? Natural fibers? Both?
  • What kind of detergent are you using? Dye-filled, additive-filled, or natural?
  • Are you using dryer sheets? Did you know they have carcinogenic effects? Have you tried wool dryer balls instead?
  • Have you considered washing natural fibers separate from synthetics, keeping like materials together?

After those things are remedied, then the use of essential oils is a great compliment. Sure, you can use the oils beforehand, but their effect will be greater once the toxic-daily-routine is minimized.

Now, let’s take a look at how my awareness was raised. I was in my early twenties, living at home with my sister and my parents. We were all working adults. And, one of my favorite things to do with my sister was spending our limited disposable income at fun stores at the mall. We’d then, after collecting our purchases, race home, as much as we were willing to speed. No one wanted a ticket! One of our favorite things to do was get peachy-smelling lotions from a favorite store in the mall. A store, that in their title, was named after being natural.

Once home, I’d bathe as I normally do, and, then, I would luxuriate in this sweet smelling lotion. Soon, I noticed that I had a rash over my entire body! Little red bumps that were so populous, my whole body looked red. The last time this happened was when I prayed to God to be allergic to the nasty penicillin I had to have, when 5 years old. I powered through though. I wanted that sweet smelling lotion on my body. I noticed that after a day or two of doing the same thing, the rash lessened. But, triggers were going off in my brain – this can’t be right! Shortly, I abandoned the sweet smelling lotion because I did not like giving myself a rash to smell good.

A few years later, I was diagnosed with eczema. The doctor wanted to make sure my career wasn’t beholden to daily chemical use, like a photographer who develops film, because that would put my skin in a constant state of stress. That was my introduction to sensitization. Once you have eczema, an autoimmune disorder that creates flaky, irritated skin, you don’t go back. You don’t undo eczema. You only manage the symptoms.

So, how do you manage the symptoms? You remove toxins from your daily life. For me, it began with body soap, lotion, shampoo, conditioner, and laundry soap. Getting as pure as possible meant abandoning the brands that were on the shelf, and only if desperate buying the “free and clear” varieties. Getting as pure as possible sometimes meant making my own things. Though, now, I prefer to pay someone to make soap. (Check out my friend Kristina’s soap! It’s only the basics.)

What I was (and still am) experiencing is a term called chemical sensitization. Chemical sensitization means the more exposed to a chemical you are, the more sensitive (or reactive) your body can be to it. I saw the same thing when my slow-to-potty-train son broke out in the same kind of rash after a night of soaked pull-ups. This led to an UNKNOWN diagnosis for his allergies, because he didn’t check positive for eczema. And, for some reason, we cannot do all the tests for all the chemicals. (We have been exposed to more than 80,000 chemicals and counting, and we do not understand the ramifications of all these things.)

We are living a life of toxicity. So many inputs, every single day, and we don’t know how they all interact. It was all these thoughts and more that surfaced when my friend asked how she should deal with her laundry. If you need a first step, pick a natural laundry soap. My favorite oil company makes one. My second favorite is by Biokleen.

What is one thing you can do today to remove toxins from your home?

Everything is Perfect (Part 2)

A little bit ago, I wrote about how everything happens in its perfect time. I like to remind myself of this when things don’t seem to be going particularly perfect.

For example, an inflamed temper tantrum (don’t you ever just want to throw something?) over something that wasn’t really a big deal, has me writing on my son’s computer. My computer, currently, will not turn on.

My husband asked if money were no object, what would I want. I want my computer to work again, that’s what I want. I then started dreaming of a desktop computer. Something permanent, maybe I do most of my work there. Right now, I do my work on my (sorry now my son’s) laptop. When we chose to buy me a new computer, there was enough in the budget for ONE, not two, so we bought one. I picked out the model that was the easiest to open and repair, that had all the ports I like to use, that still had the CD ROM drive because we haven’t completely let go of that technology, and the fastest processor I could put in it. And, it has served me well for 2.5 years. And, then there was the unfortunate liquid incident last Friday that now has my computer rendered useless.

Funny story, husband thought that this particular model wasn’t as easy to repair as it might be. So, we had a friend swap the hard drive for son’s computer before our vacation. His money and fix-it values prevent him from willingly giving money to “contractors” (I don’t care if they are pouring cement, fixing a car, or fixing a computer, they are all contractors of a sort). But, we did take my machine to the contractors to fix. And, now, because of the ill-timed tantrum, he is getting really acquainted with my machine.

It went like this. The unfortunate incident happened. I grabbed my computer, mopped up as much coffee as I could, and I worked quickly to shut down the computer, correctly. I changed me, which also got soaked, and then I went back to my computer and tipped it over on end, and more coffee leaked out. I put towels underneath, and I walked away.

Then, I called Apple Care and confessed the liquid damage. No, it is not covered under your basic Apple Care (the new Apple Care + has a clause for liquid, though). (“What did I pay for?” I consider.)

Husband got the machine, and he opened it. He worked to rinse the interior of the machine with isopropyl alcohol and then blew it out with an air compressor. He has since read that sucking liquid out is the optimal choice. After about two hours, we plugged in the machine, and it turned on. The keyboard did not work, so we grabbed a spare keyboard and plugged it in. The trackpad worked, the keyboard did not. No key worked. The spare keyboard did work, so I logged in, and I began updating where I had left off. If that worked, I would take computer upstairs and back up data before resuming. I walked away again because I am a mother and despite my grief over my non-working computer, dinner still had to be made.

About 30 minutes later, we both looked back at the computer and it was off. No one turned it off. It was in the middle of an update. So, the next day, after some morning appointments, we took it to the Genius Bar. I chose not to make an appointment, as the earliest available was days away. We were able to divert the “pre-launch” line and enter the store. My no appointment showing up got me served in less than five minutes. The sorry news was that because it was liquid damage, that I yet again confessed, to the ire of the husband, we were looking at the low price of $755 to send off and repair. No computer was opened to verify if and where damage was. My verbal, “it won’t turn on,” was the only thing taken as proof, perhaps aside from the Apple Care call of the previous day.

We left and went to the Simply Mac store. I had called the day before and they assured because I had Apple Care, the $70 diagnostic fee would be waived. (The next day, they called, and the said it was the logic board. After reminding him that it was liquid damage that brought us in, he came up with about a $650 repair cost. Our research yields that a used or refurbished machine of the same or similar specs is about $800, online or at the Simply Mac store. )

So, off to Free Geek we went to continue the exploration. Times have changed, and the Apple is much more popular than when Free Geek rooted its humble beginnings. There were at least 5 iMac’s on display, with prices, gauging their value between $250-$400 (for the 21.5″ machines I was interested in).

And, I remind myself that everything is in its perfect time. I love my 2012 top case and subsequent keyboard. The typing is softer and more accurate. I cannot even count the errors I am making on this machine that can’t quite keep up with my speed.

Monday, I collect my computer. We would rather buy a “parts” computer than giving someone $800. This is our choice. And, I solemnly leave my computer in its case. What’s there to protect now? Husband gets a hold of it. Simply Mac could not even turn the computer on because they assumed the logic board had died. Husband plugs in the computer, and it powers on.

We question yet again what service these technicians have given us and how complete their tests really are. The computer does not shut down this time, but the keyboard still does not work. I back up everything and transfer current working files. Pictures have to stay where they are for now. We restarted the machine a few times, and it powered back on just fine. I updated everything. And, then, after all that was done, I decided to turn it off. And, it did not turn back on. So, I sit here still with my son’s computer. He shouldn’t use it during the week anyway (in fact we have rules about this). And, I remind myself, it’s only a thing, it doesn’t really matter in the long run, and everything happens in its perfect time.

Everything in its perfect time

Selfie in front of the south end of the Salt Palace Convention Center. This place would be our second home for 5 days.

It is Monday, September 11. This is the 16-year “anniversary” of a terrorist attack on the United States when the World Trade Center came crumbling down after planes strategically smashed into it.

Today is also my first day back from an epic summer vacation and an amazing convention at dōTERRA. Upon leaving, careless teenagers threw fireworks into a canyon on a beloved hiking trail, which ignited over 34,000 acres. The speed at which the flames spread was alarming, sad, and scary. I could sit in the comfort of my Portland home and only be affected by the smoke, which made it very difficult to breathe. I was not affected by an evacuation order, but I wondered if it would come close. Just days before my husband and I discussed renewing our hiking along some of those very same trails. And, with a heavy heart, I reminded myself that everything happens in its perfect timing, no matter how sad.

I took that thinking with me to the convention last week, and it did not disappoint. Some funny, silly, frustrating, amazing things happened, and through it all, I reminded myself that everything happens in its perfect timing.

Space was combined because the Utah Jazz had an amazing season. So, the planned construction of Salt Lake City’s arena was delayed. That meant more lines, more waiting, and more patience required. The day we registered, I was hoping for quick lines, as was my previous experience. It took an hour to register, and I panicked that I would miss my scheduled and paid for tour. I did not miss my tour. An employee kindly guided my momentarily panicked being to where I needed to go and ensured I got to see what I got to see. I spoke my mind to someone who I deemed entitled (reminding people of boundaries). I gave suggestions for a smoother flow. I met a new friend, who I saw briefly every day afterward. I smelled the most amazing warehouse.

The next day, we missed hearing Rachel Platten sing Fight Song, but we spent time together, and we were reminded of how other people live very different lives than us. In a moment of desiring to stock our room with cheap wine, we were reminded, perfectly, of the need to ask, sometimes, “Are you safe?” (See dōTERRA’s partnership with Operation Underground Railroad.)

We, as a team, got to know each other a little better, we opened our hearts a little more, we learned a whole lot, and we reconnected with our purpose, just a little bit deeper. Together, we watched others be vulnerable, and we touched our truths one more time.

Are you thinking, seriously, all this at an essential oil convention? YES! All this at an essential oil convention. Stay tuned for more updates. Make sure you’re on my mailing list to receive a breakdown of the 9 new oils.

Much love to you my dear friends. Remember, everything happens in its perfect time.

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10 Years – a Quiet Reflection

My son’s age is a constant reminder of how long I’ve been without my sister, Cristi. This year, he turned ten. This year is the tenth year of her not being here. This day is the tenth year of her not being there, though we found out ten years ago tomorrow.

Every time I think about this, I think about an image of a 29-year-old woman on the brink of blowing up her career (for good), touching all the lives of the students she worked with, and the laughter she brought to my family. Forever frozen in time, and now we only have her memory to hang on to.

We are back, traveling again, celebrating family, sites, and death. Two of the deaths we are going to celebrate are the lives of my grandparents, my maternal grandmother, and grandfather. We will have a memorial around the family farm, celebrating their lives, their legacy. At the same time, our immediate family will hold tight to the memory of our sister, daughter, friend, who died ten years ago, much too soon.

In the midst of this intimate memorial will be nearly 4 generations of people. People who wouldn’t be here or have come together without my grandparents. And, then, of course, there will be the people who couldn’t make it. Maybe it was money or time, or in the case of Cristi, maybe it was because a life was taken too soon. We will celebrate. We may cry. We will share stories. We will laugh.

Then, we will depart and go back to our regularly scheduled lives. Some of our travels will take us to exciting new adventures. Some of our adventures will take us to the normal routines of daily life. Wake up, go to work, go to school, get dressed, eat a meal. We go on living while the dead do what dead people do according to your respective beliefs.

I was raised in the Catholic church. My husband and I are raising our son with Christian (Protestant) – Catholic views. Yet, I hope for an afterlife that is kinder and more loving than that which these religions preach. I dream of an afterlife where our loved ones are walking with us, guiding us, our guardian angels. I dream of an afterlife where we’ve made pacts with each other, and we are each others soul mates. Where we are learning some spiritual lesson, every day, and we have the support of those around us. There is no accident when it comes to where we are.

In this moment, I am writing this at a yummy café near where my mother’s new job is. Near where high school friends are employed and helped me with certain esthetician tasks. Near where I’m meeting another old friend for lunch. Near where I’ll meet up with my family at a beloved fabric store (that happens to be having a tent sale today). None of these things happened the way I envisioned. And, it’s all working out perfectly. I will take this sign on this tenth anniversary of my sister’s death that no matter the heartache we’ve had or is to come, everything is unfolding as it should.

States My Son’s Visited

After summer travel completes, we’ll be able to add a few to this… So, far, here are the states Levi has been able to visit.



For the states I’ve visited, check out this post.

Connecting Women: Why This is Our First Priority

I’ve written about this before, but this is a topic so near to me that I think uncovering and unpacking the layers is relevant, important, and necessary. When I go back to what it is I do, connecting women and holding space for women is the common theme. So, why is that so important?

Connecting to Sustainability

Years ago, I identified that my goal is to educate people on the importance of a sustainable society. This was a beautiful moment because it allowed me openness to opportunities that had just been created and were now available to me. I was able to declare Sustainable Urban Development as my minor at Portland State. I was able to travel to Italy on a Sustainability Study Abroad. I was able to co-author a book on Sustainability. Because my bucket job explorations in sustainability didn’t lead to a paid gig, I kept unpacking what sustainability meant for me.

The Triple Bottom Line is the common definition I use. It’s easy to understand, wrap our heads around, and generally gets the point across. I’ve called it the Three Es, until this new definition. It means that you balance three things equally instead of just one.

In business, the norm is to balance the books. You know if a company is making a profit, or not. You balance the profit books, the economic books. In the Triple Bottom Line definition, you add two books: people (equity) and planet/place (environment). With how we’ve measured environmental success, this piece is easy to measure. We know if we are polluting the environment more than cleaning it up. We know if we are cutting down more trees than planting. We know if our food is contaminated, or not. We know if our water is contaminated, or not.

Connecting people

But people, that’s where things get messy. Because people are messy. We bring all of our junk, or baggage, to the table – no matter what the table is – work, family, volunteering. If we had a bad day at work, it’s often hard to hide it from our families. If family life is stressful, it affects our concentration at work. We are a society that likes easy things, so we don’t deal with the people aspect because it is hard.

And, the hard thing is exactly what we need to deal with. If we want our society to be a better place tomorrow than it is today, we have to tackle the hard thing. I want society to be a better place. I want my son to grow up with kindness, compassion, and opportunity within a setting of health, wellness, wealth, and awesome choices. I want the next generation to have even better opportunities. If we collectively want that, and I think we do, then we have to work together to figure out people.

Connecting with Women

I am focusing on women for many reasons. I am a women. I was raised by a women, who served our family as a single mother using social services, until she remarried. I have sisters. One sister is the mother of a special needs child. One sister was killed by her boyfriend. That is, one sister was a victim of domestic violence.

I watch all the women in my circle: gay, straight, single, parents, black, hispanic, white – and they all have spaces where they need support. Many women I see are not the sole breadwinners of their families, and that directly affects choices they make. Some women face exclusions that I, as a white women, cannot relate to, and it’s unfair and unnecessary.

So, I see a need for us, women, to come together like we never have before. I see a need for us to cross race, political, and economic lines and see the potential in each of us. I see space for us to thrive together.

When women support each other in joy, we do amazing things. We love. We share. We are kind. We show up with compassion. We gift, and we support. I want to create a society that honors the feminine to bring these necessary things back into our world, massively. Join me. Let’s connect.