Make Your Own Natural Bug Spray

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Reposting this great recipe from blog.youngliving.com/do-it-yourself-bug-spray

Source: Marco Colindres III, YL Product Marketing Manager

April showers bring May flowers! Spring is also the time when insects and bugs begin to multiply at astounding levels and pester any early evening plans in the fresh air. If you’re anything like me, then you are also certain that mosquitoes and other biting insects are out to get you and may keep you indoors instead of enjoying the pleasant weather outside.

Bugs should not keep us from a walk around the park or neighborhood, a relaxing getaway at your favorite fishing hole, or enjoying a barbeque with family and friends. Before you get to the point of banishing yourself indoors, try this all-natural approach to a safe and hazard-free bug spray with 100% pure, therapeutic-grade essential oils from the World Leader in Essential Oils®.

Items needed:

• Spray bottle, 8 oz.
• Distilled water, 4 oz.
• Unscented witch hazel, 4 oz.
• Thieves® essential oil blend
• Purification® essential oil blend
• Melaleuca alternifolia essential oil
• Citronella essential oil
• Lavender essential oil
• Lemon essential oil
• Peppermint essential oil
• Idaho tansy essential oil

Preparation:

• Fill an 8-oz. spray bottle with 4 oz. of distilled water
• Add 4 oz. of witch hazel
• Add 10 drops of Thieves, Purification, and Melaleuca alternifolia essential oils
• Add 5 drops of lemon, lavender, peppermint, Idaho tansy, and citronella essential oils
• Shake well before each use and spray a light layer on skin and clothing

This natural alternative to store-bought bug sprays will keep you free from chemicals and other unnatural ingredients—not to mention the pleasant aroma that will be with you as you enjoy the nature around you.

However, if by chance you find yourself outside without bug spray, Purification is an amazing after-bite reliever that minimizes itching and redness, so be sure to keep some handy wherever you go.

(Reference: Marco Colindres III, YL Product Marketing Manager)

The Birth of Essential Oils

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HIstory of Oil

Essential oils have been used globally for centuries and are considered to be some of the first medicines ever used. They have been used in religious rituals, with treatment for various illnesses, and to overcome many physical, spiritual, and emotional issues.

Research dates the use of essential oils back to 4500 BC. Ancient Egyptians were the first to discover the potential of fragrance, and records demonstrate that oils and aromatics were used for treating illness and performing rituals and religious ceremonies in temples and pyramids. In fact, three oils that are still commonly used today—cedarwood, myrrh, and frankincense—were used in the embalming process.[1]

According to ancient Egyptian hieroglyphics and Chinese manuscripts, priests and physicians used oils thousand of years before the time of Christ. There are more than 188 references to oils in the Bible, and some precious oils like frankincense, myrrh, rosemary, cassia, and cinnamon were used for the anointing and healing of the sick. Additionally, biblical prophets recognized the use of essential oils as protection against disease.[2]

Recent reintroduction of essential oils into modern medicine first began during the late 1900’s.  Traditional uses of essential oils have been to kill harmful germs, bacteria, and viruses as well as to emotionally and spiritually balance moods, uplift spirits, and dispel negative emotions.

[1] Young, D. Gary. “Ancient Aromas.” Aromatherapy the Essential Beginning 1996: 7.
[2] Young, D. Gary. “Aromatherapy: An Ancient Science Returns to the Modern World.” Aromatherapy the Essential Beginning 1996: 1.

Spring Cleaning 100 Things Challenge

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With spring upon us, my natural instincts are driving me to CLEAN. The rest of the year it is somehow not as exciting, so I have been giving it my all right now while I’m in the mood. Last week a friend told me about 100 things spring cleaning challenge where you try to go through your house and find 100 things to ditch. At first I must admit I thought it was a little excessive, but once I got started I was addicted.

I found…

  • a bag of used books >>> selling on amazon.com
  • clothes and shoes that no longer fit or I don’t wear >>>giving away to the local women in need thrift store
  • electronics that no longer work or are obsolete >>> recycling at Staples
  • random clutter in the ‘junk drawer in the kitchen as well as linen and spare closets >>> recycling and giving away

and I won’t bore you with the rest of the list but I DID reach 100 items even though I have only lived in this location for 8 months. WOW do we ever accumulate excess STUFF quickly.

Once I de-cluttered it was time to get rid of all the hidden dust bunnies and do a deep clean. My favorite cleaning products are by far the Thieves® Essential Oil Blend. When I heard the name Thieves I was baffled, and honestly wasn’t sure what thieves had to do with a household cleaner. But if you are curious, check out the history which goes back to the time of the Black Plague and then you will know why I only trust this unique blend now. If it is effective enough to blast the bubonic plague but still made of all natural ingredients so safe you can drink them then I’m sold!

Think about the fact that our feet have the largest pores in our body and we put all sorts of chemicals on our floors in an effort to clean and ‘disinfect’, then should we not be worried worry about all those un-natural substances entering the bloodstream? Yuck! I have family history of cancer and as such have made a personal commitment to keep my floors cleaned only with the most natural products that actually come from mother earth. NO I’m not doing this because I’m a treehugger but because I care about what goes into my body so I can keep optimum health.

So now my home looks amazing and is cleaner than its ever been. AND…that cigarette smell from their neighbor’s condo has not been detected since I started using the Thieves either.

Maybe with all this new-found uncluttered-ness my passion for cleaning will continue year-round!

Thieves cleaner

Thieves cleaner

Easy Raw Chocolate Recipe for Easter

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Cacao pods

Cacao beans grow inside pods

The holidays are a wonderful time of celebration bringing together loved ones, but they can also often mean overindulgence in unhealthy foods. This recipe offers you a guilt free treat to enjoy! It combines many of my favorite and healthy ingredients: raw cacao (exploding with antioxidants and other great properties), delicious smelling and tasting healing essential oils* (with numerous health benefits) and coconut oil (great for digestion, increased immunity and more).

Raw chocolate is a delicious and YES healthy alternative to milk chocolate, which is almost always processed at such high temperatures that the cacao it loses its healing properties.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup raw cacao powder (OR whole cacao beans ground to a fine power in a Vita-Mix or quality food processor)
  • 3/4 cup of organic coconut oil
  • 3/4 cup agave or your choice of other sweetener (adjust sweetness to your taste, you may use a little less or more than this)
  • 2 – 3 drops of your favorite Young Living Essential Oil (pick one: Orange, Citrus Fresh, Peppermint, Cinnamon Bark, Jasmine or Lavender)*

    Cinnamon Bark Essential Oil

    Cinnamon bark essential oil offers a delicious flavor to spice up your chocolate

  • OPTIONAL: experiment by adding finely chopped nuts, NingXia Wolfberries (again a Vitamix chops these to a powder that is ideal for chocolate making), or your other favorite dry flavorings

Instructions

  • Melt coconut oil in a double boiler.
  • In a second bowl mix all ingredients apart from essential oils with a whisk until very smooth / alternatively use a blender. Be careful not to drip water in here when transferring oil from the double boiler. Note that raw cacao can vary in bitterness, therefore add sweetener slowly until the desired result is reached. This recipe is VERY forgiving, so if you think the mix is very thick when you stir you can add a little more melted oil and if the mix is runny then sprinkle more cacao powder to adjust consistency.
  • Once sweetness is adjusted then drip your essential oils into the mix and adjust taste to your personal preference.
  • If you have candy moulds pour your chocolate into the trays and cool. Otherwise you can pour onto a tray and refrigerate then cut into squares**
  • Remove your delicious creations from the moulds and enjoy!

Notes:

*Young Living Essential Oils are pure, high quality food grade essential oils that are approved for consumption. We DO NOT recommend using other brands of oils as they may not be pure and could have chemical fillers that are unsafe for ingesting.

Easter chocolate mould

Pour your warm blended chocolate mixture into candy moulds to suite your season or theme.

**Candy moulds are available at most craft or baking shops or shop online (ex http://kitchenware.goldaskitchen.com/cookware/Easter%20Chocolate%20Molds)

For additional reading about the healthy properties of raw chocolate check out Naked Chocolate by Davide Wolfe.

Have fun with your chocolate creations, I find that each batch ends up being unique and delicious in its own way. Please share comments on any of these or other favorite flavorings you have tried with success.

Enjoy!