ECO OBBSESSION: PAINTED NEON

Lately I have found some great thrift shop furniture pieces and I have wanted to give them a funky makeover. I usually don't ever go very bold with my color choices in my own home. But, the lines of these pieces below have convinced me I may have to go neon! All of the lines on these furniture pieces are classic design silhouettes, although some of them are actually new, it would be so simple to give a piece of furniture an update with a little splash of neon pink or yellow. I love the pink spindle bed and the yellow edges of that table!


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LEMON BLACKHEAD REMOVER

I'm always on the lookout for natural beauty tips. Recently, a friend told me about this black-head remover and I wouldn't have believed it if it hadn't of come from a trusted source. I can't tell you how annoyed I am with black-heads on my nose. I have pretty fair skin, and its usually clear when I eat well- but I ALWAYS have black-heads on my nose, I have tried everything and never had success. But this really worked for me.



You just need half lemon, put 3-4 drops of honey on it. Now, rub the lemon on your face for some time, make sure you emphasize on the black-head prone areas like nose, chin etc. Leave the lemon and honey mixture on your face for 5 minutes and then wash it with cold water. You will be able to see the results immediately. The lemon juice will also fade other marks and spots on the face, and the honey will moisturize.

ECO OBSESSION: SUCCULENTS

If you haven't already started a fun summer succulent project it is about time! I am a little obsessed at the moment, there are so many ideas out there floating around. Succulents can be used as so much more than just another house plant, although, I just have mine in white ceramic pots lined up in my kitchen. I hate house plants, and succulents are about the only flora I let inside my home, but this is going to be my motivation to start a succulent planter box to hang on my porch wall. I put together some other ideas i thought would be fun. And you can always find great DIY ideas on Pinterest!


And if you don't have a green thumb, or time to go in search of all your succulent planting needs- West Elm has you covered. They have great kits to get you going on all sorts of succulent planters, they even ship you the sand!




QUINOA LETTUCE WRAPS

This recipe is from Keep Your Diet Real  they have so many fun fresh recipe ideas you really need to check them out! 

Ingredients

½ cup chopped raw onion
1 red or yellow pepper (washed, seeded, and diced)
½ can black beans (rinsed and drained)
1 cup quinoa (dry and cooked according to package)
1 cup salsa
1 avocado, diced
Black pepper (to taste)
Salt (to taste)
Bibb lettuce or Butter lettuce

Directions

  1. Cook quinoa according to directions on package.
  2. Prepare onion and red pepper.
  3. In a large mixing bowl, combine all ingredients above (except for lettuce leafs).
  4. Once the mixture is combined, spread ¼ cup of the mixture onto each lettuce leaf and wrap/fold over like a taco shell.
  5. Enjoy as a snack or a quick lunch!


This recipe serves 2 as a main course. The bulk of the calories and carbs come from the quinoa, but it is also packed with fiber and protein - you can't go wrong there. These calculations were done assuming you would use store bought salsa and not homemade or fresh. If you want to cut the fat exclude the avocado- although that's the best kind of fat you can get!


ECO OBSESSION: CAMPERS

Recently my parent's neighbor bought an air stream camper and they are restoring it. We have watched them gut the inside, sand blast the painted finish off, and I have all but fallen in love. I think this is the only way to rough it. Although John might not agree that this is the best way to camp- he thinks I am living my life in a Tommy Hilfiger ad- I love to see these beauties restored and appreciated!  I am drooling over the Jeep Grand Wagoneer in the first image, can I get one in blue please!









This one has a full sized tub!





CLEAN HAIR WITHOUT SHAMPOO


I get so many questions from people about my hair that I thought I'd address them here. First of all I should tell you I don't get haircuts often, maybe twice a year. But I do clip any split ends that pop up to keep it looking healthy. 
Please excuse this grainy phone photo, it was late at night, and yes those are my PJs

Do you color your hair? 
I used to get highlights in the top, but I don't color it anymore. I had one bad experience that we call the "cartoon character" phase, so never again. The remnants of the highlights are still growing out. But I do use THIS recipe for natural highlights in the summer.

What products do you use for hair care?
I don't use traditional shampoo or conditioner. It might sound gross, but once you convert you will never go back. My hair always looks clean and healthy. Healthier than its ever looked. See my recipes at the end of this post for exactly what I mean.

How do you get your hair to curl the way it does, and keep in the curl?
I just use my 1" curling iron as a wand, I don't use the little snappy handle at all, just keep it closed. I don't use any products on it once its curled. I live in a dry enough climate that humidity is not a concern, and I feel that it just looks more natural.

Here's How I go shampoo free and why:
You have to understand that shampoo is stripping away everything on your hair-the good and the bad. Its a detergent that is filled with chemicals that we have just been conditioned (no pun intended) to accept. Just think about it, for thousands of years people didn't use shampoo. Most shampoos also contain mineral oil, which is a byproduct when gasoline is distilled from crude oil. It’s added to shampoo to thickly coat the strands, giving hair an artificial shine.

Baking soda and Vinegar Rinses:
I start with a baking soda rinse. Baking soda works wonders on hair, along with its other many household helps. It’s gentle, it’s the weakest alkaline, and it clarifies hair from chemical buildup. Use 1 TBS baking soda and 1.5 cups of water. I shake it up in an old shampoo bottle. I have thick hair so if you have fine hair you could try less baking soda.  Then just wet hair in the shower and start the rinse at the scalp and work your way down the hair will naturally get cleaned once the scalp is clarified. Then, I rinse it out, just like I would shampoo.



Apple cider vinegar is a mild acidic, working well to counteract the baking soda, and thus acts as a great replacement for conditioner. It detangles, seals the cuticle, and balances the hair’s pH. I use the ratio,  2 TBS Vinegar and 1.5 cups of water. Shake, shake, shake. Just put it on the ends and let it sit for a bit before you rinse it all out.
There is a period of time that lasts a few weeks where your hair reacts by producing excess oil. This is normal, your hair has been over producing oil for so long that it has to slow down.  If you find that your hair is still too oily try using less vinegar, or not using it all together. Some people also use lemon juice instead of vinegar for their acidic rinse, but I feel like its too acidic for me. If your hair feels too dry, use less baking soda.

*UPDATE: After getting a few questions on this I should clarify that, I found  I needed an extra rinse of vinegar, but I have a lot of hair. So you may not need to go to those lengths. If you find that you want your hair a bit silkier try an avocado mask for your hair, or use coconut oil to hydrate dried ends or your scalp.   There is a lot of trial and error associated with going poo-free, but I wish you all good luck!


WHAT'S ON YOUR PLATE?

A few weeks ago I got a great cook book on cooking organically with the seasons. It had a great section about pesticides and which fruits/veggies to avoid if you can't buy organic. It was enough to convert me to organic cucumber and apples. This info-graphic on pesticides has convinced me to "go all the way." I just don't think the trade off of saving a few dollars is worth causing you body harm.The chart below will also help you pick which fruits and veggies are best during which months.

 




NATURAL TEETH WHITENING



I have two go-to methods for teeth whitening at home. The first I never thought would work until I tried it. I love both of these recipes, you can avoid the high price tag that comes with at home whitening kits. And the chemicals in most commercial whitening kits, strips, gels, and systems can actually harm your teeth.A simple rinse of lemon juice and salt solution can work wonders for whitening your teeth at home, who would have thought?

To whiten with lemon and salt, just stir up a solution of three parts lemon juice and one part salt, and swish. Be careful not to swallow the solution, especially if you are on a low sodium or low acid diet!
If you have sensitive teeth, or an open sore in your mouth this rinse may be too strong for you. Pay attention and use your own best judgment.

If you want to boost your whitening power you can swish with hydrogen peroxide, and brush your teeth with a paste made from baking soda and water. I usually just wet my tooth brush and dip it into a small bit of baking soda, and whatever sticks to the brush is what I use to brush the top teeth with, then I rinse the brush and repeat for the bottom teeth.

Don't swallow hydrogen peroxide or baking soda.

KRISTIN DROHAN FURNITURE

 This eco-friendly, high style and durable collection was designed by Kristin Drohan. She saw a void in the sustainable furniture market, and knew it needed to be filled. Her designs are contemporary, while filling the style needs of many sophisticated active families.Her website describes each piece as having, "a specific function, inspired by a classic timeless frame, and designed for comfort and durability."

The manufacturing process is environmentally friendly and healthy to the consumer. Recently, they have added a reclaimed wood frame as a fabrication option for their furniture. The collection recaptures a bit of North Carolina’s furniture heritage by reuse of North Carolina wood from abandoned furniture and textile factories. This wood, naturally hardened from decades of aging, is perfect for durable upholstery frames. Customers have the option of using either reclaimed wood or sustainably harvested kiln dried wood for the same cost.To see more of her designs click here.