Thursday, April 22, 2010

My Donation

Ever since I started breastfeeding, I have wanted to donate my oversupply of milk.  I've gone back and forth between milk banks, but I just never did get around to calling one or apply to be able to donate.  One day my friend told me about MilkShare and how personal it is.  I love the fact that you can help another family out by donating your extra breast milk to them.  I love that it's unpasteurized.  I love that you know who is on the receiving end of the milk.  I love that you can build relationships, bonds.  It's a great concept.  My friend recently referred me to a lady that she had donated to in the past and who was in need of some milk.  She is in the process of adopting her forth child.  A beautiful baby boy.  He's 3 months old.  He does the best on breastmilk.  She tried him on every formula known to man and they weren't agreeing with him. He was born drug positive because his birth Mother did drugs while she was pregnant.  Once she put him on breastmilk, his symptoms drastically improved.  He's a happier, healthier little baby because of breastmilk.  And I get to contribute to his wellbeing.  How. Awesome. Is. That!  It makes me tear up just thinking about that! Thank you, Lord, for breasts, and for what you created them to do! Feed our babies! And if need be, to feed other babies! Breastmilk is liquid gold.  I truly believe that.  It can cure anything.  I'm so thankful I had this opportunity to donate to them, and pray that my milk supply holds up so that I can continue to donate.  I am so happy to have met this family.  To be able to hopefully build a relationship with them.  To watch this baby grow and know that I, at one time, helped him get to where he is.  I already love this family.  I love this baby.  They hold a very special place in my heart.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010


I love gardens.  I always have.  I think I always will.  My Grandmother (Mom's Mom) had gorgeous gardens at her house and my parents always had some sort of garden so I grew up surrounded by gardens and gardeners.  It's my dream one day to have an extensive garden.  I want flowers.  I want Herbs.  I want Vegetables.  I may even want fruit trees.  I want to harvest and cultivate my green thumb.  Yep, one day-when I have a house of my own!

I have a small front "flowerbed" where I live right now.  Since we moved in over a year ago it has undergone some massive changes.  It was full of weeds-it is now all weeded, with a screen on it to prevent weeds from further coming up, and lots of mulch.  I also planted all kinds of flowers in it.  I sure hope they grow.  I did a hodge podge of flowers.  Plus-Morning Glories! I have a wall on the back side of my flowerbed, perfect for Morning Glories to climb up.  My Mom has always had Morning Glories in her side yard, trailing up the fences.  They are gorgeous! There's something about flowers, about gardening that is so peaceful and relaxing.  It relieves stress.  It allows you to breathe deeply.  It makes you stop and literally smell the roses.  It can help de-stress you.  It can energize you.  It can help you feel better.  It allows you to soak up the sun, good 'ol Vitamin D!

Over the weekend I required some plants.  I got some Thyme, Oregano, Chocolate Mint, and Rosemary from our local Farmers Market.
My Mom purchased me 4 beautiful Petunia Plants for part of my Easter present.  I plan on potting them all and keeping them alive!

I want to continue to garden and hopefully pass on my love of gardening to my children!

Once my flowers start growing I'll post pictures.

Monday, April 5, 2010

Crunchy Little Me

Today my husband told me I was "granola" and it doesn't bother him a bit!  Yeeeeesssss! That made me so excited and so very thankful that I have a husband who supports my ongoing efforts for crunchiness/going green/natural living/holistic healthcare and living.
I was raised by a Mother who always was doing research about natural things and bringing them into our life.  My Dad thought she was crazy and calls it by all sorts of funny names.  (I love that about my Dad, he's always got some hilarious nickname for most things...)  But the fact of the matter is that most things she was discovering were not vogue, and so they were unusual, and frankly looked down upon by people who did not understand.  That never deterred her.  She is one driven lady, especially when it comes to doing things naturally and researching!  (That's why we call her GiGi instead of Grandma-it stands for Googling Grandma cause she's always Googling!) I so appreciate my Mother for thinking outside the box about traditional healthcare, living, and eating and introducing me to an alternative style of living, eating, and healthcare.  It's now becoming the norm for me in my family because of her!
She introduced a very reluctant me to acupuncture.  Thank God, it literally saved my life! (I'll blog about my experience later.) She also raised me always questioning the western culture considering medicine and the practice of prescribing medicine when not needed and how an alternative can most often be found and be better for your body.
Now that I'm a Mother myself, I have really taken ahold of my love for natural/holistic things/remedies and it has turned into a passion of mine as I journey to slowly convert my life into living green.  Some of the changes I've made have been regarding me, and they are what I'm putting into my body.  Like skin care, medicines, and food.  I have switched to Avalon Organics Vitamin C Skincare Line and am loving using it.  It's so true that whatever we use on our skin gets absorbed by our body.  And since my body is in constant contact with my baby and I feed my baby through my body, I want only the best going in.  While I was pregnant with Goober Pie, our Bradley Method instructor stressed how important a natural shampoo and conditioner were.  I had been thinking for awhile of switching, and I found Organix Coconut Milk Shampoo & Conditioner while out shopping one day and decided to try it.  I had seen it in a magazine and was very interested in it.  I loved it! It smells heavenly and is good for your hair, too! I'm currently using the White Tea & Grapeseed and it's nice, too.  Speaking of hair products, my husband recently asked me to pick him up some more hair gel.  He wanted a kind that didn't flake. Right-is there even a hair gel made that doesn't flake? So I looked the next time I went shopping and here's what I came home with. Perfect-no flaking, just as requested!
With my high concern over what goes into my body via my skin-I just recently purged my body lotion collection.  I am an avid collector/lover of lotions/perfumes/body washes.  And I had lots.  But I decided to get rid of most of my lotions that are not organic because I don't want them and whatever harmful chemicals they contain going into my body.  I had already cleared out my body washes.  My next step is my perfumes, but boy, is it going to be hard...
Another one of my recent "going green" efforts was to invest in a menstrual cup.  I bought the Diva Cup at our local Central Market and am so glad I did!  My husband was against me getting it, but I decided to get it anyways-it will end up paying for itself and actually saving us money.  As long as I don't tell him anything about it-he's ok with it.  =0)  I had a hard time finding the perfect fold for the cup to be able to insert it, but once I did it was easy to use.  Can I just say that I love the fact that I don't have to deal with a bloody string hanging down from a tampon when I go to the bathroom? And also that there are no leaks? And, I also bleed a lot less than I thought...which is good.  My next step on my list is to invest (actually I want to make) some Mama Cloth's.
I also make my own deodorant.  I got the "recipe" here.  It's. The. Best. Deodorant. EVER.  I hardly sweat, and I never, ever stink! Which is good for me, cause even with "Clinical Strength" deo I was sweating and stinking.  And ewww, who wants BO, right? NOT ME!  I actually don't cook my deodorant, so I use this recipe. I love it.  I have turned other mainstream deo users on to this one.  My Mother, sister, and MIL all use it now too.  You should definitely check it out and try it.
I switched toothpastes, too.  I was loving using Aqua Fresh Extreme Clean and it was working great, but I wanted a more natural alternative.  So I purchased Kiss My Face Whitening Aloe Vera Toothpaste and I love it as well.  Not only is it minty fresh, it's also doing a great job of keeping my pearly whites, white!  
As far as medicines go-I try to avoid them.  Especially since my body seems to be sensitive towards medicines I try to stay clear unless I absolutely have to take them.  And there are times where medicine is a necessity.  If there's a homeopathic remedy out there, I'll try it!   I'm not a big fan of the Western Medicine front.  My viewpoint is, why not use the items that God has given us from nature to heal our bodies? That's what they were created for...  Back in Biblical times, or even before most medicines were made, what did they use? Herbs, of course! Things from nature that healed.    Having a baby has also really made me think twice about what I put into my body and his!  Everything that I take, transfers to him since I'm breastfeeding.  I'm constantly on the lookout for new resources for Holistic healthcare-so if you have any, please share!
Now concerning food...I'm dairy and gluten free.  My husband is not.  Dairy used to bother Goober Pie when he was a little baby (gave him a rumbly, gassy, constipated tummy and a fussy spirit) so I have been off of dairy for almost 9 months! I don't miss it at all either.  And if I have large amounts of it, it makes me sick to my stomach.  Yuck.  Whoever thought of harvesting cow's milk, their Mommy Milk for their babies and drinking it? I mean it's made for calves to grow into cow's...  Sometimes I just don't get it.  It's easy for me to be dairy free.  I just avoid it.  I drink/eat Almond or Soy Milk.  I really like Almond milk.  I have only tried unsweetened and so it's not too sweet and it has this pure Almond taste.  Yum.
I have only recently gone gluten free.  Goober Pie's back broke out in eczema last December for no apparent reason.  I did everything I could think of to clear it up but it just wasn't going away.  It didn't seem to bother him at all, it just bothered ME.  My Mother kept asking me if I had tried going off of wheat/gluten.  One of my doctors had told us years before that two of the biggest digestive offenders for babies are wheat & dairy.  I kept avoiding going off of wheat until I'd just had enough of Goober Pie's eczema, especially since it had spread to his tummy.  So I went off wheat/gluten.  I kid you not, within two days Goober Pie's eczema was GONE! I was amazed.  And convinced that wheat was the offender. Even though his system seemed to handle it fine for 6 months, it probably really wasn't.  Thankfully, there are SO MANY resources for gluten free items, recipes, etc.  I even found some at Wal-Mart.  I am loving being gluten free, too.  I just feel better.  I can't wait to really explore the realm of gluten free-ness! I've actually got my non-gluten free hubby hooked on some gluten free products.  Like these Sweet Chili Chips from riceworks. And Lara Nutrition Bars.
I try to buy organic whenever I can. I want to start shopping more exclusively at health food stores.  I know it can be done on a budget-women do it all the time! I just have to figure it all out. I used to shop exclusively at Wal-Mart.  Now I shop more at Costco and still some at Wal-mart.  I'm hoping to move towards shopping more at the Sunflower Shoppe and Central Market while still shopping at Costco.
I look forward to continuing to go green and live more eco-friendly.  It is one thing I am very passionate about and I desire my child(ren) to grow up eating, living, and being crunchy-like me!