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want to firm up your chin and jawline? no exercise is needed!


The other day I was floating along Lake Damariscotta in a kayak (because I definitely float more than I paddle). I was wearing my favorite sunglasses — the ones that used to belong to my Aunt before she passed away. They mean a lot to me. So I snapped a picture and thought that I’d end up writing a blog post about why the glasses mean so much to me.

I changed my mind when I looked at the picture. Because suddenly, I was super excited!

When it comes to looking good in photos, angles matter. And frankly, the angle in the photo above has always been my absolute least favorite. But as I stared at the photo, I was pleasantly surprised to realize that my jawline has changed for the better. Ok, I still won’t call this my favorite angle of my face. But, why did it change? I’ve pinned many, many face toning exercise routines over the last few years …  but I still hadn’t tried them. (That sums up my relationship with Pinterest pretty well!)

As I floated on down the lake, I suddenly realized what had happened. About a month ago, I added oil pulling to my morning routine. When I first started, my jaws and facial muscles would tire out after a few moments. But now, I can easily go 15 to 20 minutes and not feel that same fatigue. I started with the oil pulling because I’ve read it can help you detox. Now, I have NO idea if I’ve lost a toxin or two this last month. But without a doubt, my chin has changed.

Soooo … if you’re looking to firm up your chin, give this a try! All you have to do is put about 2 TBS of the oil of your choice in your mouth (I like coconut oil) and swish it around. Ideally, you’ll want to build up to doing this for about 20 minutes first thing in the morning. You’ll feel the muscles in your face and chin working! When you’re done, spit it out, don’t swallow it.

And the HUGE bonus? I’m also pleased to say that my teeth are whiter than ever. And that’s also thanks to the oil pulling.

Want to learn more about oil pulling? Check out this post by The Wellness Mama.



p.s. Add coconut oil to your coffee for THE best morning coffee you’ve ever tasted!

p.p.s. And then I pretended that I was in Paris. Because, well, I always pretend I’m in Paris : ) …


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Easy + Effective DIY Deodorant


This was SO ridiculously easy. It really does make me wonder why on earth I didn’t start making this stuff YEARS ago! Natural deodorant can be really pricey and quite frankly, I have yet to find one that I feel like works really well with my body chemistry. I’ve spent a lot of money purchasing different natural brands of deodorant over the years, but I finally decided to look up a recipe and make it myself. I’m so glad I did because this is the most effective natural deodorant I’ve ever tried (hehe, can you hear the pride in my voice? ; ))

By the way, if you’re like many of the folks out there who are slowly but surely switching from chemical to natural beauty products, definitely check out EWG Skin Deep’s Cosmetics Database. There you’ll be able to take a comprehensive look at the ingredients used in various cosmetic and beauty products. When I was initially switching over to more healthy options about 8 years ago, I was shocked to see that pretty much all of the products I was using on my body ranked SUPER high as carcinogens and completely toxic to the body. Most of the products I was using were by Revlon and I was dumbfounded to see just how many toxic ingredients I was putting on my body!

Anyway, back to the deodorant.

This deodorant has minimal ingredients … but is super effective.

Here’s what I used:

  • 1/2 cup unrefined coconut oil – antibacterial and moisturizing
  • 2 TBS baking soda – helps with moisture and odor
  • 1 TBS bentonite clay – helps with detoxing
  • 1 TBS vitamin E oil – moisturizing
  • 1/4 cup arrowroot powder – helps with moisture and odor
  • 15 drops lavender essential oil – um, it smells delightful!
  • 5 drops tea tree essential oil – antibacterial … does WONDERS with odors
  • 1 TBS bees wax pellets – helps keep everything firmed up (well, as firm as natural deodorant gets!)

It’s a simple process:

The above-listed ingredients will render a full tube of deodorant … possibly two. I made a full tube and two smaller containers perfect for travel.

  • Bring a pan of water to a slight boil and then place a glass bowl in the water (or pull out and use your double boiler if you have one).
  • Place the coconut oil in the bowl and allow it to melt completely.
  • Stir in the bees wax pellets and continue to stir until blended.
  • Add essential oils and Vitamin E.
  • Turn off burner but leave the bowl in the hot water.
  • Add in the dry ingredients a little at a time and continue to stir the mixture so it doesn’t harden. The bees wax will immediately harden as it cools … so work quickly!
  • Once it’s all mixed, pour into an empty deodorant bottle (the one you see in the picture was a Tom’s of Maine deodorant that I finished off …even though it wasn’t really effective for my body chemistry). Or you could buy empty tubes here.

I’m not new to natural deodorant, so it didn’t surprise me that the consistency is a tad gritty. It also melts a bit as the temperature in my non-airconditioned apartment rises. When that happens, it goes on a little gloopy … which isn’t a problem as I just rub it in. I LOVE the lavender scent and I’m thrilled with this deodorant’s ability to keep me smelling great all day long.

What do you think? Would you try making your own deodorant? What scents would you choose?


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Top 60 Motivational Speakers in the World


A little while back, I decided to add three rituals to my daily life.

1. Listen to a motivational speech while I edit images for work.

2. Read a true-life story from someone who shares my faith every night before I go to bed.

3. Juice every day.

Those rituals cover the big areas of my life: my spiritual health, my physical health, and my livelihood. For a while there, these things had truly become rituals for me. But lately, as I’ve gotten really busy, I’ve let them slide. But that’s ok … I’m determined to get back on track.

So, my yearbook of true-life accounts is now back on my pillow. My juicer is getting dusted off. And I’m so excited to find this fabulous list of the 60 top motivational speakers in the world. This is one of those pages that is going on my bookmark bar for super quick reference.

I usually choose a speaker to listen to based on my mood. Tony Robbins pumps me up … Les Brown makes me feel like I can do anything … Brian Tracy helps me feel like slow and steady I can get there.

I’ve really only listened to the folks that are in the top 10 portion of this list. So I’m excited to pull up some talks by the other folks on the list and see how they might get me pumped up and ready to accomplish more goals!

Successful people are simply those with successful habits. – Brian Tracy


p.s. Only 3% of Americans regularly set goals.

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add coconut oil to your coffee to boost your brain and ROCK YOUR TASTE BUDS!


You’d have to be living under a rock to have not heard about all the amazing benefits of regularly consuming coconut oil! (Ok, if you’ve been living under a rock, take a peek at this article.)

We as an American society are finally starting to (once again) see that healthy fats are essential to healthy living.

I’ve been looking for ways to sneak more coconut oil into my life and so I got SUPER excited when I stumbled across a coffee recipe with a generous addition of coconut oil.

Have you tried adding coconut oil to your coffee yet? If you haven’t, then you’re possibly feeling like me two days ago: A little grossed out at the thought adding oil to your coffee. But if you try it, you’ll be like me today … OBSESSED.

But, besides tasting AMAZING, here’s the best part …


What happens when you consume coconut oil on a regular basis? Dr. Axe’s web site lists 20 great benefits and side effects. They all interest me, since I want to be as healthy as possible. But two points about coconut oil in particular make me SUPER happy:

Improves Memory and Brain Function – In a 2004 study published in the journal of Neurobiology of Aging, they found that the MCFA’s found in coconut oil improved the memory problems in their older subjects.

Across all the patients there was a marked improvement in their recall ability after taking this fatty acid. As the MCFA’s are absorbed easily in the body and can be accessed in the brain without the use of insulin, they are able to fuel brain cells more efficiently.

Improves Energy and Endurance – Coconut oil is easy to digest, but also produces a longer sustained energy and increases your metabolism. When taking a quality non-processed coconut oil, you can get the most benefit as it’s MCFA’s are sent directly to the liver to be converted into energy!

Today, many triathletes will use coconut oil as their source of fuels during training and races for long distance events.”

Ok, so now that we’ve seen WHY you might want to start your day with coconut oil, let’s get on to the good part.


  • Take your mug of hot black coffee, and pour it into a blender. (I make my coffee in a French Press … but it doesn’t matter how you prefer to make yours. Any unsweetened coffee will do.)
  • Add in 2 tbs of high-quality coconut oil
  • Add in a tsp of cocoa powder and a dash of cinnamon
  • If you like sweet coffee, add in a heaping tsp of honey (I like mine to have the bee pollen in it for added nutritional benefits).
  • Blend for a minute.

You’ll end up with a frothy drink that tastes like HEAVEN and is SO good for you. Plus, since the coconut oil isn’t cold like coffee creamer or milk, it doesn’t cool off your coffee.

You could easily mix up a larger batch of this and save it in your cabinet. It doesn’t need to be refrigerated. And of course, you can opt to leave out the honey if you don’t want to add any sweetener … or add more if you prefer your coffee super sweet.

Try it!!! And then tell me what you think!


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I’m giving away a ridiculously CUTE tshirt!!! All you have to do to enter is head over to my instagram account and tag two friends you think would like a shirt. That’s it! I’ll choose a random winner on Monday.

You can choose from the cropped t, the short sleeve t, or the 3/4 sleeve t.

Check them all our here:…/for-your-office

Go enter the contest here:

And lastly:
Have a wonderful weekend!



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