Thursday, April 25, 2013

More about your #LEAN CHC, #JessicaDavid #ConveyAwareness

About Jessica David, CHC
As a Certified L.E.A.N. Health Coach, my love for nutrition has been refined. Coupling this with my brand, Conveying Awareness, it has given me the ability to connect with parents [caregivers] that have a desire to give their children the best start through sound nutrition decisions.

It is my passion to enrich the lives of families through the planting of seeds – tips to live a healthy and satisfying life. I advocate for families to eat more fruits and vegetables.

I have positively impacted the lives of many while creating and nurturing relationships. I am truly blessed to see people blossom into their own personal vision of complete wellness. I hope to continue serving the needs of the online community in this capacity.
Choose, eat, and live well! =)

Leave a comment if you'd like to learn more about becoming a Health Coach or would like to take one of my workshops (both face-to-face, private, group, and online). 

Subscribe to my blog here to never miss a post. 
Follow me on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.
Subscribe here to receive my monthly newsletters for free.

Choose, eat, and live well! =)

Saturday, April 20, 2013

#Cauliflower with a spin #Recipe

Bored with steamed cauliflower? Try cilantro lime cauliflower. If you like the sourness of sauerkraut I trust you'll like this dish. 

Recipe shared on behalf of Abundant Harvest Organics, Vol 6, Week 30, March 22-23, 2013 newsletter.

1 head cauliflower
1 T water
1 lime juice and zested
1/2 cup chopped cilantro
2 T butter

Grate cauliflower florets until the pieces resemble rice. Place grated cauliflower and water in a pan and cook on medium low heat until tender. Stir lime zest and lime juice, cilantro into cooked cauliflower until well blended. Serve as a side dish.

My recommendations: Cut back the amount of lime juice to half and add a pinch of sea salt to taste. Also, butter may not even be needed. 

Buon Appetito! 
Now, I'm off to make oven baked rutabaga fries (also featured on the AHO newsletter).

Subscribe here to receive my monthly newsletters for free.

Choose, eat, and live well! =)

Monday, April 15, 2013

Need a #dinner idea? Try #Meatloaf & #Veggie Muffins!! #Recipe

Looking for a quick, nutritious meal for your family? Do you like meatloaf? My husband is a fan and each time I make it, I find another recipe because the one I used was well, okay. This one was far superior to any I have baked before!

I was inspired by recipe on Meatloaf Muffins

1 large carrot, grated
1 medium potato, grated
1 lb USDA Organic ground beef
1 egg
1/4 tsp cumin
1/4 tsp chili powder
1/4 tsp italian herbs (dried)
1/8 tsp sea salt
1/8 tsp pepper
1/4 cup onion diced and cooked

Combine potatoes and carrots in large bowl. Add ground beef, egg, seasoning, and cooked onion and thoroughly mix. Spray muffin pan with non-stick of your choice, preferably organic or use olive oil. Bake at 350 degrees for 35-50 minutes until done. 

I had some leftover grated carrots and potatoes so I sauteed them lightly in the pan I cooked the onions in and added the italian dried herbs. I also lightly sauteed broccoli in oil, sea salt, chili powder, and the italian dried herbs. 

After a label reading excursion with my 4 year old asking if Kraft Mac-n-cheese had artificial dyes in it, I told him we don't do Kraft and only Annie's if it's available (when cooking from a box). So, I served Annie's aged cheddar macaroni and cheese with this dish.

Next time, I'm getting two pounds of the organic ground beef and adding jasmine rice to make the meatloaf muffins fuller and more satisfying. Of course there will be some vegetables on the side (even though there are some inside the meatloaf muffins). Can't have too many vegetables!! 

Buon Appetito! =)

Subscribe to my blog here to never miss a post. 
Follow me on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.
Subscribe here to receive my monthly newsletters for free.

Choose, eat, and live well! =)

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Updated: My experience with #nopoo & #recipe

No poo. Do you? I do! Oh yes! I made this decision to go no poo when my hair after 6 months was drying out, breaking off, and knotting too terribly easy.

As a licensed cosmetologist (of 14 years), I have never experienced someone commenting about how I should take care of my hair or worse, not receiving any comments whatsoever. I moved to the high desert in August of 2012. The water here is well, less than desirable IMO. We have yet to purchase a water softener so I am having to make due. After leaving Biolage in the cabinet, I tried organic shampoo types and nothing helped! It knotted severely in the shower. It took nearly 20 minutes to comb / brush it out. I did not look forward to washing my hair. Then it dawned on me - I needed to try this 'no poo' method. After 6 weeks, I'm thankful that I did!

After researching no poo for my hair type, I created a recipe. Well, it's a several step recipe but it's been working wonderfully. Maybe you can try it too! 

My hair is long (middle of my back), is thick, and is naturally wavy. I have never dyed my hair (yes you read that right! A licensed cosmetologist whose never dyed her hair!!) and before moving here was very healthy; never a split end, radiant, and soft! 

The first time you go no poo, it can take up to 6 weeks before your hair detoxes. You may go through oily phases or just a different appearance. I have to say that I've enjoyed the detox phase. A little oil in my hair has always been okay because it helps it grow!! 

I need to get my hair cut. I'm scheduling myself in by the end of April. It is overdue but I didn't want to stop in the middle of the detox because I wanted to help repair my ends before cutting off too much. I'm looking to get an inch or two off max. I like to wear pony tails and no make up. I embrace my natural beauty. 

Ready? Here it goes!! 
Day 1 - February 24, 2012 
Before no pooing.
I brushed my hair first to remove any tangles then I washed my hair with Dr. Bonner's Castile soap (bar) and then did a rinse of 3 T of baking soda in 8oz of boiled (then cooled) water. I lathered the soap in my hands then rubbed into my hair and scalp. I took the bar of soap to my hair and rubbed it back and forth. I got a good lather plus the soap smells nice. This part right here made the transition easy. I rinsed it with the baking soda and water because the soap leaves a film that you do not get with traditional shampoos.

I then did a rinse on my hair with two ingredients. First it was 2 T of ACV (apple cider vinegar) to 6oz of boiled (then cooled) water. I only poured this rinse on my ends (from the nape of my neck to the ends). Rinsed in water. The ACV neutralizes the hair then I had read that if you have dry hair to rinse your hair in lemon juice and water. My second rinse was freshly squeezed lemon juice in 6oz of boiled (then cooled) water. I pour this second rinse on the ends only. I left it in my hair while I finished bathing. Rinsed at the end. The best part of this first day? Effortless brushing!!
After no pooing and 3 rinses. 
Day 2 - February 28th, 2012

I shared with friends that I was no pooing and one gave me a recipe she uses. So, I decided to try her recipe instead of the castile bar soap method this day.
Before 2-28-12.
2T of raw honey (melted if solid), 2T of baking soda, a little spring water to make it into a paste, and 5 drops of Tea Tree oil (optional). 

Washed hair using this 'paste' and then rinsed it following the steps from day 1. ACV with boiled (then cooled) water then the lemon juice and water rinse. 

My son had to be in the image! =)

A bit heavy on top (from oils even after washing hair).

Day 3 - March 6, 2013

Used Dr. Bonner's castile soap (this is gentle enough to shave with as well!) with the two rinses (ACV and lemon juice). I'm alternating between methods at each hair washing. 

I found that my ends were still dry. The last two times I washed my hair I did not apply any product. In between washes, I wrap my hair at night and have a silk like pillow cases (more like satin) to reduce breakage. I was adding coconut oil on my ends between washes to keep them soft and more manageable. Brushing daily. Spritzing with water and adding the coconut oil as needed. Don't get over zealous like I did because it's easy to go overboard. 

This date, I added coconut oil (about 1 tsp; melted in my hands) to my ends (from nape of my neck to the ends) after washing and rinsing and after brushing. I found that it made a bigger difference in the appearance of my hair the day of and the days following no pooing. 

Day 4 - March 12, 2013

Honey, baking soda, water with 3 rinses. Followed with a teaspoon of coconut oil to the ends.

Day 5 - March 19, 2013

Castile soap, baking soda and water rinse then ACV and lemon rinses followed by coconut oil to ends.

Day 6 - March 24, 2013

Honey method, 3 rinses, coconut oil

Day 7 - March 29, 2013

Castile soap, 3 rinses, coconut oil

Day 8 - April 6, 2013 

Six weeks of no pooing! I'm happy that I took the plunge. I have enjoyed seeing the natural red-lights coming out in my hair. 

When exercising, I pull my hair up and off my neck. It just started getting warm here and I'll be washing hair more frequently than I have been in the past 6 weeks as the temps keep rising. 

To save time, make up to 16 oz of boiled then chilled water for your baking soda, ACV and lemon juice rinses. For my hair length and thickness, I use about 1/3 of 16oz each time I wash my hair. Eventually, I'll be getting some larger containers to keep the mixtures in for it to last longer. 

I will update this post with an image when I get my ends trimmed. If you have any questions about my process or if I can encourage you in yours, please leave a comment. 

Updated, May 20, 2013:

This is one week past my trim. About 2 inches was taken off the bottom. Still going no poo but purchased a new product called Alaffia from the health food store, The Whole Wheatery. I've used it only once thus far so it's too early to report on those results and I'll update this post if the results are successful. 

Updated, June 25, 2013: 

Alaffia ended up being too heavy for my tresses. So I ended up washing my hair with Biolage shampoo to remove the build-up of the heavy oils then used Original Sprout's Luscious Island conditioner. After two washes the build up was gone. I went back to no-pooing and rinsing every other time with the ACV and water only. NOTE: The scent of the ACV will remain in your hair and if you're like me and don't care for a vinegar smell, you'll want to make a DIY air freshener using distilled water and essential oils and spraying your hair with it as it dries. Your hair will smell like the essential oils and not the ACV. However, if you use the Original Sprout product, your hair will smell lovely! 

Updated, August 19, 2013: I picked up a shampoo bar from Tehacha-Bee Farm at the Mountain Festival in Tehachapi. It is a lot like Dr Bronner's castile soap mentioned above. I have only used it twice and it is lovely. I will report again when it's been awhile. 

I still add coconut oil to my hair after it's been brushed/combed. 

I do receive a small commission from if you purchase anything through their site using one of the links above (read my full advertising disclosure here). 

Thank you very much for your generosity in helping to offset the costs of website upkeep, so that I can keep sharing wellness resources with my community and beyond.

Subscribe to my blog here to never miss a post. 
Follow me on FacebookTwitter, and Pinterest.
Download my free eGuide when you subscribe to my monthly newsletters for free.

Choose, eat, and live well! =)

Friday, April 5, 2013

#Cleaning with #natural products: #Bakingsoda #Vinegar and the like!

[This post was originally written in August 2012 but has been pushed back for several months. My floor doesn't look like this now! It was when I first moved into my home.]

In this post, I am going to share a few recipes I've found online and from pages I follow on Facebook. 

From Natural & Frugal: Raising 6 Kids, Cheree shared a way to freshen mattresses with the use of baking soda and an essential oil.

1 cup baking soda
5 drops of essential oil

Store in glass container with lid. Shake. Sprinkle or sift across bare mattress and leave on for an hour or more. Vacuum mattress. Leaves mattress clean and smelling great! I use AromaLand's Calming essential oil. 

From One Green Planet, a natural deodorant:

1/4 cup coconut oil (melted)
2 tbl corn starch
1 tbl + 1 tsp baking soda
20-25 drops of essential oil

Mix oil with corn starch and baking soda. Add essential oil. Mix. Transfer to glass container. Keeps for 2-3 months. 

Followers of this blog state that your body may go through a detoxing time when first starting out with a natural deodorant from one you've used for years with chemicals. Consider the same reaction may occur as you move away from junk food to whole foods. 

Now onto floors!

I moved to a new place in August and I love the uniqueness of the tile in the kitchen. I had no idea until recently that the grout is not supposed to be the color that we saw! It was DIRT! Eww!! 

From Our Little Coop, a way to clean grout! 

Her recipe:
2 cups vinegar
2 cups water 
3 tbl baking soda
1 scrub brush and lots of elbow grease

Even after I cleaned the grout in what I call round 1, I saw that the grout was not as clean as I had hoped! I scouted the internet for something a little stronger. I was reluctant to use the alternative bleach (because it was my first time trying it) in round 2 but am glad that I did. 

From Accessorize and Deodorize, round 2's ingredients:
1/4 cup bleach (or *bleach alternative)
3/4 cup baking soda
1 scrub brush and lots of elbow grease

*bleach alternative: 1 cup water, 2 tbl lemon juice, 1/4 cup 3% peroxide 

Now my before and after pictures. You'll be amazed. I still look at the floor and think wow, this is some clean grout! (Yea, who says this? Me, I guess!) =)

Before! Eww- YUCK!!

Bottom left used water, vinegar, baking soda only. 

Full floor using second batch - bleach alternative and baking soda. 

I noticed that after I wiped the floor down with many rounds of hot water and towels, the floor became cleaner and more vibrant. There were some spots that were too stubborn for these two rounds. Over time, I am sure that I can remove them. 

Thanks to Surviving the Stores' inspiration, I steam cleaned my carpets with a mixture of water, vinegar, baking soda and an essential oil. I was happy with the outcome. So much better than using harmful chemicals! And much easier on the wallet! 

I'm in the process of trying to figure out how to get old rust stains from my carpet. I've tried borax and water. Nothing. I've tried borax, vinegar and salt. It lifted it a bit but not by much. 

Do you have a different recommendation to remove rust stains from carpet? I'm thankful that the stains are small until I can figure out what works! [I'm still looking for something 8 months later.]

Thank you for following, reading, and sharing my blog!

Subscribe to my blog here to never miss a post. 
Follow me on FacebookTwitter, and Pinterest.
Download my free eGuide when you subscribe to my monthly newsletters for free.

Choose, eat, and live well! =)

Monday, April 1, 2013

The #Benefits of Therapeutic #Massage - #smallbusiness April 2013 Feature

The Benefits of Therapeutic Massage
By Elisa DeCristo, CMT

Royalty-free stock photo
Massage is seen by many as a form of pampering as well as a way to relieve stress and pain, but massage does more than just help stressed out moms and injured athletes.

Massage has a wide application as an alternative form of treatment.  Studies show that massage is beneficial for almost anyone and that it can help provide some sort of relief from almost any condition.  We are talking about preterm newborns to teens with aggressive behaviors, pregnant women, those suffering from drug and alcohol addictions, chronic pain sufferers, the elderly and the terminally ill. Massage therapists even work on pets including horses. This shouldn't be a surprise; it makes sense that the power of healing touch has no boundaries and works on all walks of life.     

Massage could help prevent heart attacks, falls or have other benefits that we may not be aware of.  In school, I was taught to work the Soleus muscle, a.k.a. the calf, because it is considered the second heart and it helps pump blood back to the heart.  Using this methodology, a massage can prevent people from having heart attacks.  Another interesting fact is when the Tibialis Anterior is worked, a.k.a. the muscle that runs behind your shin bone, it may prevent people from falling since this muscle helps lift the foot when walking.  With over 600 muscles in the body, I sometimes wonder what kind of benefits are taking place during a massage that the client or the therapist are not even aware of.

Studies in the Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine report that the benefits of massage are cumulative and the frequency of a massage increases its therapeutic value.  Benefits to a massage usually last a few days to a week but receiving repeated massages, once weekly, has an added effect compared to receiving a massage once a year.   Just like you wouldn't go the gym once a year or eat healthy once a month, the same holds true for massage. 

As a massage therapist myself, I can fully understand the time and financial constraints to receiving regular massages.  Personally, I try to receive a massage once a month because I know it makes me feel good and it makes me a better therapist and I miss the days when I was in massage school receiving daily massages because I experienced so many life changing benefits.  So I urge you, give yourself an hour of medicine, pampering or whatever you want to call it, just do it, and do it regularly because the benefits are amazing!

Follow Elisa on her Facebook page and mention her article on my blog, Conveying Awareness, or mention the code: ICAmassage to receive one full 60 minute massage for $40 or a package of 4 for $140! Offer expires 4/30/13 and there is no cash value or rain checks, and the purchase must be made during the month of April 2013 but can be used on a future date. Please make arrangements with Elisa.

Elisa DeCristo is a Certified Massage Therapist and strongly believes in the healing power that massage has on the mind and body.  After 20 years in the corporate world, she traded her career to stay at home and raise her two younger kids.  Staying at home allowed her time to homeschool her kids and follow her passions which include holistic health, spending time outdoors and dabbling in photography.  She is currently working on taking her national board certification in massage and enjoys learning about natural healing remedies.  She has her own private practice in Old Town Temecula, CA and works part-time providing massage to patients at a drug and rehab facility and part-time at Glen-Ivy Springs.