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Midnight Ramblings

I love staying up late. Everyone is in bed.  My obligations for the day are complete. I am listening to a playlist where nearly every song I can sing to, sway to, groove to. This is my time of the night. I live for this time of the night

And, this time of night gets in the way of my desires of waking up at 6 am, and “getting a good start to the day.” I look longingly at my neglected journal, where I love penning my thoughts with my TWSBI ECO Fountain Pen, inked in Noodler’s turquoise. But, the time to write is before the kiddo gets up, with a cup of coffee. And, when I stay up late, where I also thrive, I do not have the capacity to get up at 6 am. 

A quick selfie of me, at my computer, just before writing this… 

Alas, I sit here at 1:02 am, keying these thoughts into my blog in my newly updated website. This was actually a struggle! I refuse to pay a monthly fee when I can get the same function for free. The challenge I am facing is which theme works with which plugin, without error. And today, I struggled to find it. 

I think I have something that will work. I have ditched the landing page (I hated this interruption before getting to my site. And, besides, isn’t that what this static front page is for anyway?) In this theme, you can have “sliders”… it’s been so long since I used these header sliders! So, I chose to create custom images that linked to the thing I wanted to “advertise. The sidebar seems to to be working, on all the page, so that will remain with a permanent newsletter sign up. 

I am thankful for Canva and its ability to keep my branding consistent, so creating images is quick and succinct … and on brand.

I invite you, now, in these wee hours of the evening, take a look. What do you think? I pay for hosting with my site, and not much more. So, what you get is the time I spent researching, dabbling, and trying things until I think they work. 

And, my hope – that I can squeeze in a few hours of sleep AND rise at 6 am. Let’s get these journal pages written! 

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Happy Belated Birthday, Cristi – Support a Domestic Violence Center Near You

cristi graduation

Domestic violence rudely entered our lives on July 19, 2007. Today, you would be 40, having had your birthday just two months ago. Eleven years ago, I hope I called you on your birthday. Ten years ago, I didn’t know that would be the last birthday you would celebrate. Eleven years ago, on July 20, I became educated on the reach of domestic violence.

A year ago, I spent the day with a new friend. She’s a PR professional expanding her local reach. The day ended with a light dinner at her sponsored table for an event. The event was “Roots of Resilience”, the annual fundraiser for SAFE of Columbia County.

Before that fateful day, I knew of domestic violence in abstract terms. I remember an SNL skit that laughed at Bill and Hillary’s relationship, suggesting that he was the victim. (1 in 3 women and 1 in 4 men have been victims of [some form of] physical violence by an intimate partner within their lifetime. ) I knew of domestic violence with other bad jokes of men in “wife beater” tank tops, the illusion that only uneducated, poor, white men are the perpetrators of abuse. The truth is grayer. The truth shows us that domestic violence crosses all demographics: race, socio-economic, education. Though poor economies can raise the effects of abuse, economics is not a cause of domestic violence.

The Wheel of Power and Control

When I got home from your funeral, I spent a little time educating myself on domestic violence. Learning some of the harsh truths and taking the time to understand patterns of control. In a sense, I find I am hypersensitive to language when I hear things that sound like controlling behavior. I found this widely shared image that helped put things in perspective for me. I wish I had known about it before you died. Maybe we could have had a conversation about what you needed to feel safe in your relationships.

Wheel of Power and Control
From the Domestic Abuse Intervention Project, www.duluth-model.org, shared by SAFE of Columbia County.

Help Us Really Hear

One of the reasons I think we didn’t talk about all those things is that the busy-ness of our lives – we let it get in the way. We don’t listen to each other. We don’t really hear each other. We allow bad behavior to be swept under the rug instead of standing up to abuses and intolerance. We all have our own lives to lead and live, after all. 

In honor of the 1 and 3 women and 1 and 4 men, I encourage you to stand up to oppression far and wide. Start saying, “NO!” You will not tolerate that racist slur, that minimization, that gas lighting. It’s not right, it’s hurtful, and it doesn’t help those we love. 

Sources

SAFE of Columbia County
The Gateway Center of Portland
National Coalition Against Domestic Violence, Statistics
Dispelling the Stereotypes
7. How does the economy affect domestic violence?

Other Notes

This post was started on May 13, 2017. That would have been Cristi’s 39th birthday. At the time of publishing, we both would be in our 5th decade. I will celebrate the lessons I’ve been gifted through this grief and awareness. 

Must Have​ Oils for Travel

Confession: when we drive, I take all of my oils. I simply cannot decide, when we’ll be gone for a month, what oils I need or will need in the off chance this crazy thing happens. When I fly, I have to pare down my list to a current list of necessities – which varies depending on where I will be traveling. 

So, choices sometimes have to be made, and if they have to be made, here’s a short list of the oils I would absolutely not leave home without. 

  1. ClaryCalm – because I need all the hormone support I can get
  2. Thyroid Support (Lemongrass and Myrrh) – gotta keep it in homeostasis 
  3. Rose – we all need more love
  4. Frankincense – the oil of truth is great for grounding, skin, everything
  5. Correct X – because sometimes you need a band-aid too 
  6. Lemon, Lavender, Peppermint (mixed in a 1oz spray bottle, and backups to refill as needed) – damned pollen count in varied places 
  7. Melaleuca – skin support! skin support!
  8. DigestZen – tummy support! 
  9. Forgive – we don’t always travel on our best behavior 
  10. OnGuard – when flying or driving, you come across so many different people, places, and things – so lets put the protective blend to good use

There are so many oils I am leaving off this list because I wanted to try and reduce it to 10. When I’m going out and about, when I am home, I carry a lot more than 10 oils on me. I carry more than 10 oils in ONE pouch. And, sometimes it’s necessary to pare down and use what you have to the best of your abilities.

One thing I absolutely love about using oils to support my home, my health, and my family, is there is literally an oil for “that”. So, when I do bring even just ten oils, I have a way to mitigate pretty much any scenario I or my family encounter.

What does your top ten list look like? 

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Add a Little Harmony to Your Day

It started out as any typical endeavor… I grabbed the necessary materials, and I arranged them just so. I propped up the tools and arranged them just so. Then, I began mixing, matching, showcasing. When I was all done, I reviewed. And, oh boy! You couldn’t see anything!

I got ready to film! Look at those neat rows and piles.

I love watching videos of people making things. And I haven’t yet figured out my set up yet to be able to adequality film me working in my journal or making oil concoctions or changing out my facial toner recipe. You see, I got all set up to do the video, but I didn’t have the tripod nor my phone angled just so. So you got to see this desk the whole time, rather than the making of the blend. So, instead of a video, you’ll get a blog post!

The Harmony Collection is an adorable collection that was unveiled as a gift for Mother’s Day. They still have some in stock! It comes with three oils you cannot order wholesale regularly, two 10ml steel roller bottles, pipettes, labels, and a book of blends. 

The spicy, fresh, uplifting oils are Green Mandarin, Star Anise, and Pink Pepper. You can read more about the oils and the kit here. I flipped through the recipe book and stopped on the Harmony Signature Blend. I could go no further, I had to make this beautiful blend. It includes a range of oils, many of which are not included in the 3-oil kit. So, I pulled from my oil collection and got to work.

The recipe book guided to add drops slowly and smell as you go. You may want to revise if you do not like the direction of the scent. I had no problems, so I made it accordingly. The recipe is:

  • 45 drops Copaiba
  • 32 drops Hawaiian Sandalwood
  • 15 drops Green Mandarin
  • 5 drops Arborvitae
  • 2 drops Black Pepper
  • 1 drop Blue Tansy
  • Fill with FCO in a 10ml roller bottle

Sometimes I smell the arborvitae first, sometimes sandalwood. I love how these oils constantly surprise. So, not only have we made a beautiful “perfume” to wear whenever… this “perfume” supports my cellular function, uplifts my mood, and connects me with the divine. I’d encourage you to check out this Harmony Kit if you haven’t already. 

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Values Awakened

[March 28, 2012, I wrote… ] To take care of those we care about. That’s what we want. I know this to my core. Yet, growing up (my twenties and younger), it’s as if no one I knew talked about this. All I heard was Left v. Right. Conservative v. Progressive. Democrat v. Republican. No one, except college professors, talked about how the terms can be interchangeable and that there are no longer hard and fast definitions. We went to school. We went to work. We did our homework, our jobs, we played our sports, and we talked about who we had a crush on our silly jokes. A few friends and I were concerned with the environment and curious about government, but although we might have learned the rote mechanics — we didn’t talk about what we believed. We didn’t talk about our core values.

This is the final visual of my personal values.

[Today] Six years later, I have defined and redefined my values with the help of a local business consultant, Michelle Gay. When I wrote this post, I was noticing that our labels don’t work and our society is shifting, sometimes uncomfortably. Something I have noticed for a long time now is that we need to come together and retell our stories. We need to rehash what is important to us, and what we hope for. Assessing our values, together, is one way of doing that.

Michelle argues that before you bring your values to your business or to a group, you should get in touch with who you are first. She has started opening up her values exercise to the masses, with the first such workshop held at the beginning of June. I have now taken a look at my values three times with Michelle. Watching her evolution of teaching this workshop is remarkable. It started as a sit-down, reflect activity – which I found very beneficial. Michelle likes kinetic moving, though, and she had to move it up to the wall, so she did. In a few hours, with guided steps, participants dig deep in their values, writing, pasting, and tearing down. Then, we defined what those words meant. I often write “love” or “heart-centered”, and each time I carve away at the definition a little more – so even my own two definitions aren’t alike!

Michelle argues we must define these words we use so we can have a better chance at understanding where people come from. The exercise does not stop at defining the terms, however. Next, she pushes us to consider how we lead with these values, writing down three different ways for each defined value. We finish with a power statement. (See one of my power poses above.)

After three times of doing this, I am working on owning: I am a lioness. For more about my values, click here for personal and here for business.

This is the final visual of my business values.
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Vitamins

My mother told me, when I was selling books door-to-door, to take my vitamins. I spent 20 minutes staring at the options in the aisle to the chagrin of my friend who I had just told, “I’ll be quick.” 

I had no idea what to buy. I had no idea what one thing was good for over the next. I knew I needed something to aid my diet that consisted largely of peanut butter and jelly. But, I had no idea what. The supermarket certainly didn’t have educational signs telling me how to assess my diet! 

Fast forward several years, and I worked to clean up and improve my eating. And, still, things didn’t feel quite right. Well, when doTERRA was introduced to me they were holding an amazing promotion, and that promotion has come around again. (Seriously, if you don’t have a wholesale account yet, every month is a good month to sign up!)

The promotion is: buy 100pv, spend 100pv, and get the vitamins. Why would you even want doTERRA’s vitamins? Because the same quality doTERRA puts into sourcing their oils they put into the supplements. Why do you even want a high-quality supplement? The bottom line is the Standard American Diet just isn’t good enough. And, our bodies need support to edge towards their optimal life. And, a good quality vitamin can support that path. 

Here is a list of some things the supplements support:

  • General wellness and vitality,
  • Antioxidant and DNA protection,
  • Energy metabolism,
  • Bone health,
  • Immune function,
  • Stress management,
  • Cardiovascular health,
  • Healthy hair, skin, and nails,
  • Eye, brain, nervous system,
  • Liver function and digestive health,
  • Lung and respiratory health,
  • Gentle on the stomach, and they are
  • Non-GMO, gluten-free, dairy-free!

Are you with me? This either sounds amazing, or crazy, I’m guessing. Well, let me tell a little story. When I sold books door to door, I was walking for 13 hour days. After that adventure, I had pain in my feet when I would wake up. After a while, it would go away. And, it would return if I sat for long periods until my feet got used to walking again.

After I was on the supplements for just 3 weeks, I no longer had that feeling in my feet. My body was so supported overall, that whatever deficiency was aggravated by that stress 20 years ago, it was counteracted by these beautiful vitamins. 

If this sounds like a great deal, let me tell you that it is. Join with a wholesale account today, add to your collection next month, and get your vitamins at no charge. Want to learn more? Great, let’s meet.

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Amavi

Amavi, the 2018 doTERRA Father’s Day Collection

It’s from Latin (and Spanish), and it means, “I love.”

So, what better way to show Dad you love him than with the doTERRA Amavi Father’s Day Collection. It is universally appealing, highlighting the unique aroma of CPTG essential oils like Buddha Wood, Hinoki, and Litsea along with the doTERRA Balance blend. The collection includes a 10 mL Amavi Touch, Amavi After Shave Lotion, and doTERRA Onyx Balance Bath Bar. Each product is expertly crafted to evoke the feelings of a hero’s heart while supporting the fearless in spirit. Not only does this collection help uplift and refocus your mind throughout the day, it also creates a simple daily regimen to clean, soothe, and hydrate your skin.

Order today, and get two-day air… when you ship on your loyalty rewards order (and you can have more than one), you get the points back next month. Two-day air should get it to you by Sunday. 

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Spotlight: Frankincense

This is the “king of oils”. Sourced from Somalia and Oman, doTERRA actually created a cooperative with existing farmers of Frankincense. So, why do we even call it the “king of oils”? Because this complex oil can support the whole body in a variety of ways. Frankincense essential oil supports a healthy immune response, promotes overall skin health, and supports a healthy inflammatory response in skin cells.

Frankincense oil blends well with citrus oils like Lime, Lemon, and Wild Orange – among others. One of my favorite blends is for after school grounding and focus. I will take 1-2 drops vetiver and frankincense and add 4 drops of wild orange. The uplifting citrus pairs very well with the whole grounding of vetiver and frankincense. Often, study time is much calmer when this is diffusing!

Frankincense can be used for a variety of things. Here’s a short list: 

  • Add to your DIY facial toner to support healthy, glowing skin
  • Apply after your morning shave to provide relief to razor bumps 
  • Diffuse on your car ride into work for a calming, relaxing fragrance to set you in the mood for working 
  • Use in your prayer or meditation, as it is the Oil of Truth, to help you get into alignment with your truth
  • Take daily under your tongue or in a veggie cap to support overall cellular function (pro tip, try it for a month and report back any findings)

Click the links below for more! 

Below is a doTERRA video on the sourcing of Frankincense and why their Frankincense is so different. 

A video that tells a little bit about doTERRA’s Frankincense 

Resources

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Introducing Master Classes

You’ve probably seen a lot of “master classes” floating around. Famous people like Maclom Gladwell and Gordon Ramsey are sharing their craft. Experts in writing, cooking, or acting are sharing their knowledge widely. 

I’ve been teaching “master classes” for a while, but they went by another name. So, we are calling them what they really are – a master class on essential oil use. I have been an expert in natural remedies for almost 20 years, with the last four focused really on using essential oils in our homes for our health and well-being.

So, each month, starting with June, the master classes will coordinate the theme with my newsletter. This month, we’ll talk about “summer play”.

What is included in this master class? We’ll go over at least 10 ways to support your summer with essential oils. The class will be 30 minutes. Plus, we’ll have 10 more minutes for questions. Know that space is limited. Each person who registers will receive the recording to listen to, as long as you need!

Register for this month’s class now. And, I’ll see you on Friday, June 15 for our first essential oil master class.

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Marriage: a Formula for Success

I was making small talk. Okay, for me small talk can be a range of things. I believe everyone has a story to share. So, the get-to-know-you questions came up, and in there was, “How long have you been married?” I always have to think about that. “Almost 12 years.” “Oh wow, that’s a long time. What do you think are two things that have helped you?” Without thinking, I responded, “Stubbornness and loyalty.” Later, I returned the question after learning he’s been married 11 years. “Knowing that you are two whole people coming together,” he waxed poetic.

I sat on this for a few days, and I decided to post it to my Facebook world. I love the responses I got. Check it out! 

Communication and laughter and being able to accept when your SO tells you you’re being an ass

Compromise. Knowing we both can’t always have it their way all the time. And laughter…we can be huge dorks

Pick your battles, don’t sweat the small stuff.

Well damn. Mine would be similar to yours. We’re having our 10 year wedding anniversary this year and I would say service and loyalty. By giving and remaining true to standing by each other… you can get through all of the harsh crap that surfaces every now and again

Compromise. Knowing we both can’t always have it their way all the time. And laughter…we can be huge dorks

Hmmmm…..humor, communication, and knowing our roles. Hopefully, that doesn’t sound bad, but having a child with special needs we don’t always have a lot of time so we do the jobs we have strength in.

Softball and chocolate

Owning my own [stuff] and committing to basic emotional literacy such as “I statements” and a profound desire to “fight fair.” There will always be issues and annoyances, but I choose to focus on the many good things we have and to be a loyal, loving friend. That they are as committed to that as me makes it possible.

“If my brother annoys me there are two handles by which I can pick that up,” as a Stoic saying has it: “By that , it annoys me or that he is my brother.”

Laughter

Communication, yes of course! I also believe that at the end of the day your spouse needs to be your best friend. Laughter, fun, and not taking things too seriously helps too

My friend’s grandmother was married for 70 years and said simply ‘love.’

My mom was married for over 30 years said “there were times I did not like your father but I never stopped loving him”

I got divorced during year ten with my ex and I’m I’m year 6 this year. But what’s helping my husband and me through life is laughter, every day!

Choose to love every day. Even days when it’s hard. Choose to love.

Compromise and communication. We make sure to know what is going on with each other and make all big decisions together. We also make sure to spend time together each week doing something – dinner, movie, shopping, something that is just time together.

Commitment to mutual joy, focusing on the compatibilities.

My partner thought for a long time and then said, “Liking each other a lot.”

Respect, laughter, play, and friends

The best way to ensure a strong marriage is to work on yourself.

You put up with one another’s shit and you know how to let go so the other can grow.

Being willing to dive into the hard stuff and come out on the other side stronger. Giving space for each person to remain their own person. Laughing till you cry at ridiculous and small things.

Forgiveness and understanding

  1. Respecting the other person
  2. Actually liking the other person.
  3. Fighting fairly. We haven’t had that many fights in 20 years of being together. But in each of them, we have never been mean.
  4. Being on a team
  5. Always give more than you receive. If you are both in it like this you never come up short.

We also give each other a pass on social/family gatherings. I let him know when it’s really important and he comes along happily.

Conversation. forgiveness. putting up with some random quirks that bother you, without letting them GET to you.

At my marriage we had our friends and family write words on rocks to help remind us how to be in a relationship. While we are no longer married we do still abide by that advice because it’s even harder to maintain a good relationship when you are no longer together but still share parental responsibilities and family.

Respect and be nice! Always be grateful for what the other person does for you and the family and say thank you often.

Lace your fingers together. See how snug and tightly woven they are? He met my weaknesses with his strength. And I tried to do the same for him. He was the wind beneath my wings.