Simple Green Me

Cultural reporter for KUTV 2News and adjunct yoga/meditation professor blogs about wellness, green living, downsizing, simplifying, better travel✨and more. Offering mindfulness, meditation, goal-setting and decluttering coaching!


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Some of my favorite mood-boosters

When you’re prone to feeling down or anxious, it’s smart to have a list of self-care items, because it only takes one moment to turn the day around. Here are some of my favorite mood-boosters that help me reset the moment, and ultimately, my day.

1. Pinterest – turn fear/sadness and into inspiration 

2. Selfies! Forcing yourself to smile, and admiring your best qualities, can oftentimes help lift your spirits. 

3. Kombucha – this alkalizing drink actually gives me a bit of euphoria, and the ice-cold fruity fizziness always makes me feel refreshed. 

4. Tea – Unlike coffee that can make me feel jittery or keep me awake, I don’t have to worry about how tea will affect my mood down the road. You can drink 100 cups and be healthier than when you started! I still LOVE coffee (and it boosts my mood at the right time of day) but tea is a great option to give you a task and taste that leaves healthy effects. Try spiking it with apple cider vinegar for a nice little “kick!”

5. Sound – I gong my singing bowl a few times to reset the moment. Sound waves actually allow us to interrupt our fight or flight response and put us back into rest and digest. I find it also is nearly impossible to think/worry/bemoan when there is such powerful sound happening. You can also put on a favorite song or some nature sounds to turn it all around! 

6. Fresh flowers – keeping a bouquet of fresh flowers lifts my spirits and reminds me that happiness can be renewed, even if it (temporarily) dies. 

7. Himalayan salt crystal lamps – the story is the heat from the lightbulb activates ions in the salt that distribute into the air, purifying it and canceling out radiation from your electronics. Whether that’s true or not, the hue of this lamp is so pleasing, I put one in every room to give me warm-fuzzies when I enter. 

8. Aromatherapy – invest in a diffuser, which distributes healing essential oils (like uplifting citrus) throughout your home. I got this one at Whole Foods for $30, and as a bonus, it also displays changing LCD lights, which are known to be therapeutic. 
9. Tension relief – when I’m feeling down or stressed, my muscles take it all on. I’ve invested in a heating pad (for releasing), gel ice packs (for healing inflammation), Epsom salts (for relaxing baths) and a whole bunch of balms that really help soothe sore muscles. My favorite (and I’ve tried them all) is actually from the founder of Kundalini Yoga, Yogi Bhajan! It’s an Ayurvedic recipe called Narayan gel that feels as though it is really penetrating the deep tissue and relaxing it. I found this at Sprouts. I also use Doterra’s PastTense on my temples to ease my facial tension and headaches.

10. A few more things like meditation, candles, looking into my doggie’s eyes, painting with my toddler, opening a window, going on walks, putting my feet up for 5 minutes, and organizing something round out my list. I hope these help you renew your happiness, because remember, you are worthy of feeling happy, and your happiness comes entirely from within.

What are your favorite mood-boosters?

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Get ready in 15 minutes with capsule beauty kits

Capsule wardrobes are trending right now for a reason; any time you reduce quantity and focus on the QUALITY of your items, your QUALITY of life improves! When you streamline your beauty routine, no longer is your precious morning taken up by indecision, or rummaging to find what you need. Here’s my recipe for simplifying your beauty products and regimen to free up time and space in your bathroom, and your life!

looking good doesnt have to take forever!



BEAUTY
(this is for your face – do what you want in the shower😊)

-scrub (Acure Brightneing Face Scrub with green algae and argan stem cell from Target…or you can use coconut oil and sugar or coarse salt)

-gentle cleanser

-makeup remover towelettes

-moisturizer (obsessed with Bright Skin Moisturizer with SPF from Eminescence)

-eye cream 

-lip balm

-aluminum-free deodorant (if you’re still using regular deodorant, it’s time to switch. I use Thai crystal deodorant stone, which is nothing but mineral crystals..and the same stone lasted me three years. You need to be diligent and only apply it to CLEAN Pitts – yes, I wash my underarms and face in the sink every morning if I don’t shower.)

I wash my face with honey in the morning (it tones skin and is antimicrobial), and a scrub at night to get all the dirt off.  The towelettes are great if you’re too lazy to wash your face at night. I do my BB cream after morning wash (it has moisturizer in it, as well as spf and anti aging) and then my moisturizer after night wash (it’s all organic and plant-based so it nourishes my face all night). I put my eye cream on at night a few times a week and on airplane trips. I always scrub my lips when I scrub my face, and cost them with an organic balm. No crazy serums or toners; I believe when you rest, eat and move well, your skin is healthy and glowing on its own.

HAIR

-leave-in conditioner or hair oil

-Styling cream (good for scrunching or holding straight styles)

-hair spray

-straightener

-blow dryer

-comb, brush, roundbrush 

-rubber bands and Bobby pins

-headband or scarf

This is my number one advice for simplifying your hair routine: cut it!! Long hair takes forever to blow dry and style. Or if you don’t want to cut it, at least find a cut that complements your hair texture to make it easy to wear naturally (sans blow drying). For example, lots of layers for thick or curly hair; textured cuts for thin hair, etc. I can’t tell you how much time I’ve saved in my week from cutting my hair! I don’t even think about doing it anymore. If you want take it a step further, choose a low-maintenance color. I love being blonde but it’s a dye job every 4 weeks. I recently added lowlights of my natural color and I’m going on two months without an appointment! 

The hair products are pretty self-explanatory; you need a product for defrizzing (co sit-up we or oil), hold (spray or cream) and smoothing (any of the above). With styling, My rule of thumb here is choose a hairstyle for each of your three “looks:” Everyday, dirty hair, and going out.

I do my Going Out look every time I shower; i blow-dry it back, back comb and hairspray. My Everyday look coasts off of that; it’s the same. My dirty hair look is either that with more backcombing, or a headband/scarf, or a row of tiny, loose ponytails. So, no matter what the occasion or cleanliness of my hair, I always have ready-access style options. 

MAKEUP

– full coverage foundation (I use NS minerals out of Utah)

-BB cream (obsessed with Mineral Fusion brand from Whole Foods)

-eyebrow pencil 

-neutral palette  

-colored palette

– one black, one brown, and one colored eye liner 

-concealer (Mineral Fusion brand has one that covers so well)

-bronzer (I go pretty dark, as it’s for contouring)

-one neutral, one medium and one dark lipstick

They key here is consulting with a makeup artist to get your colors. I had one at Whole Foods help me pick out a BB Cream that not only gave me tone-perfect coverage, but also had anti-aging, spf, and moisturizing properties.

My makeup artist friend helped me find the right colors for my eyes, which are blue: a brown eyeliner, a dark blue eyeliner, a 3-hue neutral palette that had Sand, Gold and Brown, and a 3-hue set that had purple, grey and pink. I got a good mascara and eyebrow liner and now I know whatever I put on my eyes will accentuate them.

I use a BB cream everyday, unless I’m on TV or going out – then I use my full-coverage mineral powder. Either way, I do bronzer under my cheekbones, at the tampers and on the chin. I always line brows and usually do a dark blue liner on my eyes. I save mascara and eyeshadow for TV or going out because they’re harder to remove. 

my “everyday” look


NAILS

-clippers

-Ped-egg

If you want a low-maintenance life, do not get your nails done. Don’t even paint your own nails! That requires touch ups, fill-ins, removal…so many things that waste time and energy. The payoff of having hot nails does not compare to the freedom of never needing to worry about them. I simply make sure my nails are tidy, and my feet are buffed smooth, and I’m good to go!

— 

These tips help me get up and going, or get into bed, without any hassle or indecision. Let’s automate the mundane parts of our lives so we can focus on what really matters! If you need personal coaching on streamlining your life, visit www.simplegreenme.com for a free consultation! 


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All-natural tips for relieving pain


Ever since i was rear-ended last year, I’ve suffered from back pain. Pretty much, it feels like a pinched nerve under my right rib and at the base of my spine. Not to mention all the resulting muscle tension…

Im sure my husband finds me super attractive when I have my Velcro ice pack braced around my neck, but ice is one of my go-to’s for instant relief. My physical therapist said the best formula, though, is:

 1. HEAT 

2. Activity 

then 3. COLD

They have fancy equipment at the PT office so I jimmy-rig it a bit at home. This is what I do to help ease my pain, within that formula:

1. For heat, I take an Epsom salt bath (the magnesium lifts your mood, detoxes you AND relieves tension). I don’t use microwaves but you could also just nuke an uncooked rice-filled pillowcase as a heat pad. If I don’t have time for a bath, I quickly rub Tiger Balm all over my muscles. 

2. For activity, you think stretching would be the best thing to do for muscle pain. While that definitely helps, I find better, longer-lasting relief from strengthening my sore muscles. For my back, I love cobra, locust and bow yoga poses. If you have sore shoulders, do plank; for neck, try chin tucks, and so on. 

3. Then, for cold, good old ice does the trick. Between 15-20 min while watching tv.

It’s quite the job taking care of your pain! Even though this routine takes up a good portion of your evening, if you accept it as your daily life – like brushing your teeth – you start to not mind it. Plus, that pain relief is a huge incentive! What are your tricks? 


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#15secondzen – suffering your way to enlightenment 

Today’s ✨#15secondzen –
why we need suffering. My take on it today? When I’m in pain, I’m reminded to feel my body. To breathe. To reach out to loved ones. It turns on that need for “something more” in that spiritual sense. YOU HAVE NO CHOICE BUT TO BE PRESENT. The reason I’m so into meditating now is Because I was trying to ease suffering. And now, it is my tool for prevention of suffering. 

“To live is to suffer, to survive is to find some meaning in the suffering.” 

-Friedrich Nietzsche

And make sure you check out all the new stuff at http://www.simplegreenme.com! Use the code FRIEND10 for 10% off your first order. !


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Yoga for better boobs

lifting those pecs in chaturanga


Hear it from a classic boob-hater; I’ve wanted to nip, tuck and lift my girls as much as the next person but have recently started owning the stretch marks and sagginess as part of acting “French.” (Their no-bra study says it all). No longer am I battling push-up bras and looking at implant Before and Afters online, but rather I’m free-flying as much as possible and doing a few exercises to boost my chest-area confidence.

Because breasts are made up of fat and other tissue, to “tone” them, you need to focus on the pectoral muscles on which they rest. Here are my top chest-strengthening yoga poses:

1. Chaturanga 

This low push-up position allows maximum strengthening of the pecs. 

2. Bakasana 

Your chest muscles play a key role in Crow while keeping your head from toppling forward. 

3. Bhujangasana 

After strengthening a particular muscle group, ensure those torn muscle fibers reshape correctly by giving them a good stretch. Cobra opens up the chest in a gentle way.

Before going under the knife, which not only has risk of complication but also requires lifetime maintenance, perhaps try some of these to naturally lift everyone’s favorite body part.


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Green up your space!


After watching, “Children of Men” featuring Clive Owen, I leaned over to my husband and showed him my new Pinterest board. 

“Our house is now going to look like Jasper’s,” I announced, scrolling through Pin after Pin of floating shelves draped in ivy. 

Jasper, the character in the movie, has the right idea: pack your house with plants to improve air purification, aesthetic appeal, and even food production! I’m growing herbs and aloe Vera right on my kitchen counter. Veggies on the balcony. There’s always flowers on my kitchen table (thanks, Trader Joe’s)! And it seems the more plants are in the home, the happier I am! And there’s actually research to prove that. 


A ton more research is out there about how plants improve physical and emotional health, but you get the idea. So in the name of creating an environment that soothes you, instead of stresses you, turn to the “pot!”


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New Year Detox

  
When you’re feeling icky from one too many snowmen-shaped sugar cookies, reach for the green. Honestly, any natural food that is green has detoxifying properties that will reset your metabolism and give you a confidence boost. 

You already know how I feel about chlorophyll (take 2 tbl every day to detox our environment’s heavy metals out of your system). Then there’s green produce, which packs vitamins, plus the fiber to encourage elimination. Finally, take plentiful Epsom salt baths. Not only do you feel super soaking in the hot, salty cloud, but also, the magnesium pull heavy metals from your body, and nips stress in the bud as it ups your serotonin. 

So when you’re feeling sluggish and hefty, use the power of nature – and GREEN – to boost your body’s burning power.