How to Clean Your House Without Chemicals (Using Just Water!)

When it comes to cleaning, I’ve noticed people tend to settle into two different camps. They love it or they hate it. They let it build up until they can’t stand it anymore (or they have guests over), OR they have a militant cleaning schedule and can’t do anything for the day until the cleaning is done.

Since we were both raised in a stricter cleaning environment, my husband and I tend to lean the other way- towards TIDY but “oh, there’s a pink mold ring in the toilet? Ok, I’ll get the toilet brush…” mentality.

We have always struggled with maintaining a cleaning schedule because with the little amount of downtime we have, we don’t want to spend it cleaning!

Until now. Cleaning is SO MUCH EASIER and FASTER and that’s what I’m sharing with you today. 🙂

My Grocery Shopping Routine and A Look Into My Anti-Cancer Fridge

Your Dekalb Farmer's Market

This week has been a busy one with a teething baby and revising the HealingStrong Group Leader’s Guide, but we did manage to knock out our family’s monthly grocery trip to Atlanta’s Your Dekalb Farmer’s Market. I thought my fridge looked worth sharing with you, thinking I would loved to have seen what other cancer thrivers were eating when I was newly diagnosed! So here it is in all of its overstuffed glory and a glimpse into our grocery routine as a family of 5.

Last Minute 2015 Healthy Holiday Gift Guide and Stitch Fix Review

presents

This could also be titled “My Last Minute Christmas Gift Hustle- 2015 edition!”

It’s the minimalist in me- I like practical stuff that you can USE and has a PURPOSE. Gift buying has never been my love language. I more so like helping people with healthy advice or even helping to relieve their stress and worry over their health. Things like a Homemade Wellness Basket or Homemade Deodorant are more my thing…and writing this blog. 🙂

So here are a few fun ideas I have for my friends and family this year, many of which are healthy, helpful and practical.

My Home Birth Experience with Samaritan Ministries and Review of Samaritan Ministries- Alternative to Health Insurance

IMG_3004

Here’s another beautiful story of why Samaritan Ministries rocks my socks.

A few weeks ago I shared the home birth story of our third daughter, but today I’m going to explain the details of how 100% of our costs were shared by members of Samaritan Ministries.

I’ll also go into detail about what it’s like to be a member, starting with the monthly SHARE (which is comparable to a “premium” in insurance terminology,) to submitting a NEED (similar to a “claim”,) and what it’s like to go through the maternity process with Samaritan Ministries.

 

Tips on Unmedicated Childbirth and my First Natural, 48 Hour Hospital Birth

IMG_3901

Whether I ever put much thought into it or not, I always knew I would try to have natural, unmedicated births. Growing up my mom talked openly and simply about her three natural births as my two sisters and I would probe her about what it was like. She would say something sweepingly underwhelming like:

“Sure, it hurts a lot, but then it’s over and you have a beautiful baby and you forget about the pain!”

So this is the mentality that was passed down to me when it came to pain, birth, and babies and I am incredibly grateful to my mom for raising me to see the big picture and to not fear a natural process.

When I became pregnant with my first daughter in 2009 (while I had cancer but that’s another story you should read about,) I began my search for a doctor who would be encouraging to my wishes to have an unmedicated birth with very little interventions. I didn’t know anything about midwives or midwifery at the time, but through some chance meetings with like-minded new friends, we actually found a midwife practice who would deliver our baby in a hospital setting.

My husband and I researched natural childbirth in a similar fashion to how we approached treating my cancer naturally: with serious intent. We learned the statistics of the cesarean section rates in our area. Most of our local Atlanta hospitals had c-section rates over 30% so we made sure to stay clear of those hospitals and learned that the hospital my midwife was affiliated with was friendlier towards mother-led birth decisions and birth plans.

Similarly to how we viewed the ability of the body to combat cancer when it is brought back to its optimal condition and health through nutrition, detox, and emotional healing, we believed that leaving the laboring mother’s body to move naturally and labor without intervention was the way we were designed to have children and best for mother and baby as long as there weren’t emergency complications.

Our Home Birth Experience

Charlotte Kate

Our daughter is almost 6 weeks old and I have gotten what seems about 6 minutes of sleep since she was born. <smiles.> I have some hardcore Mommy Brain going on which of course is why (along with having two other children,) I haven’t blogged about my home birth experience yet. And oh yah, it was either write this blog post or shower, so let’s just say I’m thankful for my wonderful coconut oil deodorant.

I know all of the moms reading this will know where I’m coming from. 🙂

I’m excited to share how wonderful our home birth was and contrast it a bit with my previous two natural hospital births. I will also be blogging soon about our experience with our health insurance alternative, Samaritan Ministries and how they financially covered our home birth, maternal care, and newborn care 100%!(Update: Read that post HERE.)

My Non-Toxic Cleaning Routine

Non-Toxic Cleaning RoutineI’m due to have a baby tomorrow. And well, I’m still pregnant. Yesterday my nesting instincts really kicked in and what started as me only cleaning the toilets resulted in me cleaning the ENTIRE house. I have barely been able to keep the kitchen clean this entire pregnancy and today I was able to mop, dust, scrub, vacuum, and polish practically everything in my two-story house. There is surely a baby on the way soon!

When you’re treating your cancer naturally, it is essential that you detox not only your body, but also the chemicals you keep in your house and clean with. When I began treating my cancer naturally 6 years ago, I did this immediately knowing the strong ties that chemical exposure has to a lymphoma diagnosis. And although I started with buying “green” cleaning supplies from Whole Foods, I now make all of my cleaning supplies at home. Here’s a rundown of my non-toxic cleaning routine.

Natural Winter Wellness Remedies for 2014

snowflake

I’m glad to be getting a headstart on this year’s winter wellness list since just this past weekend it dropped below freezing here in Georgia. I learned a lot last year about the remedies in my winter medicine cabinet after a horrible flu had me in bed for a week over Christmas. The flu is a different animal than the common winter cold and it took rest, time, and a combination of these remedies to fully recover. On the other hand, my daughters did great last winter with only a few minor colds they quickly rebounded from.

So this year’s list is edited slightly from last year as I learned a few new therapies I liked better and simplified a bit too…

10 Natural Remedies for Morning Sickness (that work!)

toilet

Let’s first get this straight. “Morning” sickness for me is not just in the morning. It is all day. For many WEEKS. It’s like having the stomach flu for a month and a half. No fun here, but thankfully a beautiful reward in the end. Oh, I haven’t mentioned yet…post-cancer #3 is on their way and due in February. 🙂

When I have pregnancy-induced nausea, I can’t even talk about GREEN things without getting the dry heave feeling in my throat (hence the 6 weeks that have passed since my last post!) It has been this way with all of my pregnancies, and thankfully my body was able to hold onto its healthy state (and cancer-free) even though I am not eating my usual Budwig, green smoothie, salad, and juice routine.

So what have I been doing to deal with this? Not the usual natural/crunchy wisdom has worked for me (like wretched ginger! Bleh!), but here are a few things that did.

Natural Remedies for Winter Cold and Flu

winter

Oh boy, it’s that time of year! I know in our house we have already had to break out and use some of these natural remedies. Here’s this year’s revised list of what I use to keep my family healthy in the winter months. I arranged the list from what I think is most important to the extra “nice to have” goodies.