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Saturday, November 22

Right Now...

"Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, and fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people will not feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It is not just in some of us; it is in everyone and as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give others permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others." -Marianne Williamson

Thursday, November 20

Essential Oils for Hair Care // Homemade Hair Mask + Curl Spritz

I'm sure I've mentioned it before, but one big part of my essential oils journey was to get rid of all of the chemical-laden products that we use from cleaning to personal care. The biggest challenge for me thus far has been my unruly locks. 

I've had wavy/curly hair as long as I can remember, and it stays on the dry side, giving it a frizzy, unkempt demeanor. In fact, there is a running joke among my family and friends that I resemble an angry lion in the mornings. Not too far fetched, actually. So I weigh down my curls with conditioner, mousse, and finishing cream in an effort to fight the frizz. And while I used sulfate-free products, drank tons of water, and only washed my hair a few times a week, the results were less than stellar.

Lately, however, things have been looking up. I started using a copaiba lavender or copaiba geranium hair mask on the days I wash my hair. And the results? Silkier, shinier locks that don't require nearly as much (or repeated applications of) finishing cream. I haven't gotten to the point of being able to quit all my hair products, but I can see the end in sight! Here is my current regimen for taming my dry mess of a mane.

1 -- Wash once or twice a week.

2 -- Before washing, apply this hair mask, concentrating on the ends, and leave on for at least 30 minutes (twist up your hair, and go wash dishes, fold laundry, etc.):
2-3 drops copaiba
2 drops lavender OR geranium
1/2 tsp or so organic coconut oil

3 -- Switch to Young Living shampoo, which is natural and sulfate-free and infused with amazing essential oils. I'm partial to the copaiba vanilla but lavender mint sounds nice, too.

4 -- Drink at least 64 ounces of water daily. Also, my daily Ningxia Red is just an all around immune and wellness support.

5 -- Make your own curly hair spritz (so simple and easy but it works!):
Combine a 50:50 ratio of aloe vera gel and water into a glass spray bottle. (Add more aloe for a firmer hold, less for a more relaxed hold.) Add 2-4 drops of lavender oil and shake well. Shake before use, then spray onto hair until damp. I like to keep a small bottle in my purse for mid-day, winter wind hair emergencies. 

If you're interested in getting your own oils at a 24% discount and/or purchasing some of the amazing personal care products from Young Living, click here.

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Any suggestions made on this website are very specific to Young Living essential oils and should not be used with oils from another source. Statements made on this website about Young Living Essential Oils have not been evaluated by the FDA. These products and information are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. Anyone suffering from disease or injury should consult with a physician. If you are currently on medication, do NOT stop it.

Wednesday, November 19

Life, Lately

Since coming home from Wyoming, life has been moving at warp speed with little to no breathing room. I feel like it's been a whirlwind of working, managing a household, taking care of a babe, and (not enough) sleep. On a happy note, today is my Thursday since I have a long weekend coming up, and I just. cannot. wait! I have so many recipes and DIYs I want to share with you, and I'm itching to start some holiday decorating and make some paleo peppermint hot chocolate. Yes, you read that right, but let me just repeat... paleo peppermint hot chocolate. 

Here's a little peek into our trip to Wyoming and the last week of craziness. 

{my happy little reindeer! this kid is so awesome, you guys.}

 {my boss brought us bags of apples from the north Georgia apple orchard - score!}

{I could hike all day in the beautiful Wind River Range.}

{I've been using panaway + peppermint for back pain and exhaustion. Total life-saver!}

 {We had the best burgers & sandwiches on gluten-free buns in Jackson.}


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Sunday, November 16

Oily Updates

Wanted to share a couple fun things happening this week:

1 -- #myoilyday
I will be joining some of my favorite people tomorrow on Instagram to showcase what a day in the oily life looks like - what oils we use and how we use them on a daily basis. Would love to have you follow along and play along!

2 -- Everyday Essentials
I will be hosting an online introduction to essential oils on Tuesday night! Wear your pjs, grab a cup of hot tea or cider and a blanket and follow along! The class link will be posted on my Facebook page, Ashley Cribb Essentials, where I will be to 'live chat' about any questions you may have!

For more information on essential oils or to purchase your own at 24% off, click here.

Happy (almost) Monday!
Here's to a great week!


Tuesday, November 11

Peace & Calming for Babes

Teething is in full swing over here. Elliot already has two teeth on the bottom and is working on two more up top. Needless to say, we've been experiencing some uncharacteristic melt downs from our usually happy and laid-back boy and some sleepless nights. In an effort to combat that and to help my sweet boy get some much needed rest, I've been using the Peace & Calming essential oil. I use it in one of the following ways every night:

1- Diffuse into the room during his bedtime feeding. This benefits the both of us since the sleepless nights are an added stress for mama as well!

2 - Dilute with coconut oil and rub on his feet. If I do this, I use the thieves oil on his feet in the mornings to make sure his little immune system stays strong during cold and flu season!

I love having these oils to use for my family, and I am so grateful for the way they nourish and protect us. If you're interested in getting your own oils with a 24% discount, click here and for more general info, click here.


Monday, November 10

The Anatomy of a Wall Collage

I love a good collage. Mixing prints, textures and colors is a general theme around our home. And  whether small or large, a good wall collage adds personality and depth to any room. Here are some of my tips for achieving your perfect mix. 

1. Make it personal
Use items from your life - your wedding, your adventures, meaningful quotes -- something from your favorite novel, a line or two of poetry or even an entire poem, or song lyrics -- perhaps the song you danced to at your wedding, or the one your mother used to sing to you as a child.

2. Find a common theme
Make one element of the collage cohesive  -- perhaps a color story {I went with neutral colors in my living room collage}, using the same frame for each piece, a wall of only poetry or song lyrics, pictures from your honeymoon or a favorite trip. Find something that ties a common thread between all pieces.

3. Plan it out
I like to lay the collage on the floor to get the perfect arrangement, then cut out shapes from paper that match each piece. Lightly tape each piece of paper to the wall and tweak the placement as needed. It may seem like extra work, but I guarantee you it is far easier than rearranging things after you've already made holes in the wall. I especially suggest this if you are trying to hang multiple things in one straight line.

4. Don't be afraid to switch it up
Changing out pieces in the collage helps keep things fresh, especially during the holiday season. I like to add silver Christmas balls to the antlers in our living room or string garland across the frames to make them more festive. Also, if you find another piece of art that you love, find a way to incorporate it into your collage.


copyright Hiking in Stilettos

Sunday, November 9

Hello from Wyoming!

Life has been so crazy lately that when given the chance to visit family out west, husband and I gratefully accepted. We are spending a long weekend exploring Wyoming and Utah, hiking through the wilderness, eating gelato in bed and catching up on some sleep.

Fun things next week when we get back!

Friday, October 31

Natural Baby Care 101: Cloth Diapering + DIYs + Winter Health with Essential Oils

Earlier this week I hosted an online class about natural baby care and wanted to share some links with you as far as products and resources that I love and use. If you are interested, here is the link to the recording (it's also on the sidebar!). 

When it comes to cloth diapering, these are some of my essentials:
baking soda

And some of my favorite pocket diapers & wipes:

Essential (and homemade!) baby products:
diaper rash cream (recipe in the webinar, post coming soon!)
tender tush ointment for the diaper bag/on the go

And while we're talking natural solutions a few other simple, yet effective ideas...
Natural homemade toothpaste
Simple + natural thieves hand sanitizer
Essential oils for the diaper bag

Also, happy Halloween! And more importantly, happy weekend!

Tuesday, October 28

DIY Thieves Toothpaste

When I first got started with essential oils, I knew that one of the first products I wanted to make myself was toothpaste. I have never found a natural toothpaste that I really love (glycerin, fluoride, preservatives, bleh), and with Elliot popping out teeth like it's his job, I knew I wanted to try making my own as soon as possible. And while it sounds like a difficult, overwrought process, it was so so simple.

I really wanted to make a toothpaste using one of my favorite oils, thieves oil. This oil is a blend of clove, lemon, cinnamon bark, eucalyptus and rosemary. It is based on a legend of 15th century thieves who robbed bodies of plague victims without contracting the disease themselves. When apprehended, they were forced to reveal their secret concoction! This blend supports the immune system and has great antibacterial and antiseptic properties, perfect for toothpaste-making!

Here is a simple, easy recipe for the whole family:

+ 6 T baking soda
+ 25 drops thieves essential oil

Mix all three ingredients together until a smooth consistency is achieved. Scoop into your storage tubes or jar and brush away!

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You can also make a re-mineralizing version by adding benonite clay and salt if cavities are an issue for older children:

+ 3 T solid coconut oil
+ 3 T boiling water (may need more for thinning)
+ 3/4 t real salt
+ 1 t baking soda
+ 1/4 t thieves oil
+ 1/4 t peppermint oil

Mix the coconut oil and water together and let it cool just a bit. Add in salt, baking soda and essential oils. Then mix in the clay, adding more water slowly as needed to thin to desired consistency. Continue to mix until the paste is smooth, then transfer to a 3 ounce squeeze tube. Use as you would standard toothpaste!

We keep ours in a glass jar in our bathroom with the other oils I use in my daily beauty and nighttime routine. We dip into the jar with a small, clean spreading knife to keep the toothpaste free from germs. I just didn't have any plastic tubes on hand because I gave all of my away from making thieves hand sanitizer

Friday, October 24

Evening Routines

I am a creature of habit. I love routines, the comfort of the familiar. And I've found that it helps exponentially with my stress and anxiety levels. So it's no surprise to me that my sweet little boy is just the same way. He, like many babies, is so much more at ease in his own environment, and it makes my life that much easier as well. Here is a peek inside our evening routine as we settle toward bedtime, where he usually sleeps for a good 12 hours. Although honestly, sometimes he likes to have a midnight snack ;)

Bath time:
We stay in the bath for a while. E loves the water, loves splashing and singing and blowing bubbles. He particularly likes for me to sing Judah & the Lion.

Baby massage + foot rub:
I don't always put oil or lotion on Elliot, but I do apply coconut oil (sometimes with a drop of lavender oil) to his bottom to help prevent any diaper rash issues. Then I mix a drop of Thieves oil with about 1/4 tsp of coconut oil (I don't measure, just a smidge on my fingers) and rub it all over the bottoms of his little feet. (Thieves is one of my favorite oils because it supports the immune system -- a must have for cold/flu season. I use it daily on E as well as myself to keep our immune systems up!) Then we put on pjs, so whatever oil is left on my hands gets transferred to his clothes so he can inhale the sweet scent of Thieves and boost that little immunity all night long. 

While I massage and rub his feet I sing old hymns. His current favorites are 'How Great Thou Art' and 'Come Thou Fount.'

And in case you are interested, my nightly routine with the oils is similar, albeit without the singing ;) I wash my face (kind of) and then apply a drop of Sacred Frankincense diluted with coconut oil to my face and neck. Frank is great for skin health and wrinkles. Then I apply one or two drops of Peace & Calming to my wrists to promote healthy sleep. I do this anywhere from fifteen minutes to an hour before bedtime. Also, since I been having some issues sleeping (hello adrenal fatigue and anxiety), I dilute a drop or two of Valor with cocoa butter and rub on the bottoms of my feet, then cover with socks. I do this just a few minutes before bed to help promote good sleep, and y'all, it's helping! Praise!

Since I'm using Valor for sleep, I apply Thieves and coconut oil to my feet in the mornings when I wake, then cover with socks. Gotta get that immune boost. I also diffuse Thieves + Lemon in our living room and keep a cotton ball with Thieves in the vents of my car. For my face, I apply a drop of Joy with coconut oil every morning. Geranium (one of the ingredients of Joy) is great for skin health and regeneration, and my tired mama eyes can use some help! I rub it liberally on my face, neck and chest. Joy is also great for anxiety. Win win. 

You guys these oils have literally changed our lives, and I am so grateful to have found them when I did. It makes me want to shout from the rooftops until everyone knows!

So here's to healing with essential oils and to being creatures of habit.

If you are interested in more information on essential oils or want to purchase some of your own, click here

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Disclaimer:  Any suggestions made on this blog are very specific to Young Living essential oils and should not be used with oils from another source. Statements made on this website about Young Living Essential Oils have not been evaluated by the FDA. These products and information are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. Anyone suffering from disease or injury should consult with a physician. Keep out of reach from children. Please consult your physician about your medical needs, and if you are currently taking medication, please DO NOT STOP.

Wednesday, October 22

Motherhood // Thoughts of a New Mom 03

Grace was enough and grace is enough and grace always will be more than enough to change an old man young and an ankle deep stream to a sea. Grace can't be bought and grace can't be sold, not for the wages of a thousand days. Grace is the gift of a King who longs for His children to see they're not slaves.

I would have never considered myself as someone who struggles with anxiety. During high school and even college, school and studying were my focus but were like second nature to me. I dealt with the typical last minute project stress or worried over a big final, but that was the extent of my anxious thoughts. Studying comes somewhat naturally to me, and I honestly enjoy it. Pharmacy school was a bit different since the stakes are higher, but even then I was able to leave my worries at the door after completing and exam or even a difficult or stressful week.

Looking back, I think my anxiety actually began in the final months of my pregnancy. I was so ready for the 'new normal' and was actively preparing myself mentally and emotionally for the process of labor and delivery. What I didn't anticipate was the amount of tender healing that my own body would require. There was the learning curve of nursing, the sleepless nights and the fact that this perfect, tiny being was completely dependent upon me for survival. It can be so overwhelming.

Then I started back to work at only six weeks postpartum, which came with its own set of stressors. Juggling all the hats was, and still is, pretty exhausting sometimes. Work full-time, commute, make dinner, workout, spend time with my husband, oh yeah and take care of that babe. Not to mention sleep, shower and try to find a sliver of downtime to keep the anxiety at bay. The struggle is so real. There is a constant stream of thoughts in my head that I just can't shake. I worry about Elliot, how much he's eating, whether I'm pumping enough. I worry about vaccines and infections and his exposure to germs. I worry about my own health, lack of sleep, headaches and almost nonexistent workout schedule. I worry about my husband, and I miss him. I worry about money and jobs and health and all of the other things.

So apparently, mine is a story about anxiety... but it's also one about grace. And I share this to encourage all of you who may be dealing with the same thing. It's ok to be joyful about your new family and your role, but also be tired and overwhelmed and frustrated. It's ok to not be on the top of the mountain all the time. My son is the most wonderful thing that has ever happened in my life, second only to the day when I married his papa. But that doesn't mean that some days with my precious child aren't incredibly hard, or that I don't stay up way later than I should trying to put tomorrow's dinner in the crockpot or that I don't have sleepless nights that have nothing to do with a  babe. Because I have all of those things. But I also have grace.

And sometimes grace takes clearing stones with a weary heart and aching bones to prove to you child that it was worth it all.

This season is most certainly a difficult one, but I have no doubt that it will be one of the most rewarding times of my life. My sole purpose during these days is to be an encouraging and faithful wife and an uplifting and caring mama. This will be a story of struggle but also one of great love.

Grace gets deeper the more you trust that the King is good and the King is just. And that forgiveness is stronger than the grave. Sometimes grace takes clearing stones with a weary heart and aching bones to prove to you child that it was worth it all.

Roll away the stones, roll away the stones.
Roll away the stones and come alive.

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Tuesday, October 21

Natural Baby Care 101

Protecting my little babe's pure and perfect and oh-so-new-and-cuddly body is hands down my biggest priority, from what he eats to what products we use to how we protect him from illnesses. Since I have spent quite some time researching and am really particular about little bit's care, I want to share my experience with you! It can be so overwhelming when you start looking at cloth diapering, homeopathic medicine and homemade baby anything, so next Monday I will be hosting an online class about natural baby care. I'll touch on include cloth diapering, using essential oils in babes, and  share some simple and easy recipes for baby care in general and specifically for cold and flu season.

Check out the event details here. I'll post the link to the class on Monday evening at 8:00pm EST.
Also, join the Facebook group here.


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Monday, October 20

Creamy Roasted Winter Squash + Kale Soup

I really love simple, one dish meals. The ease, the simplicity of flavors, and the ability to prepare a large pot of something delicious over the weekend then enjoy it all week. This soup was inspired by one that my mother makes which contains milk and great northern beans. Substitute a little coconut cream and roasted winter squash, and you have a paleo and vegan-friendly fall soup that is equally as good for breakfast as it is for dinner. The healthy fat from the coconut and the good carbohydrates from the squash and sweet potato make this soup incredibly filling. 

The first  time I made it I left out the meat, and we ate it for breakfast  for a change from our usual egg + vegetable scrambles. I made it again yesterday and added some shredded chicken for us to have for dinner, and it was just as delicious and filling.

You will need:
bacon grease (or olive or coconut oil if veg/vegan)
one medium yellow onion
one tsp minced garlic
one small delica squash
one small carnival squash
one or two small organic sweet potatoes
--- note: the roasted vegetables added up to about 3-4 cups total ---
one large bunch of organic kale or about 3/4 a bag of kale, washed & chopped
32 ounces (1 box) of organic vegetable broth
4 cups of water
salt + pepper to taste
one can full fat coconut milk or coconut cream

Preheat oven to 375. Saute your onion and garlic in the bacon grease or olive/coconut oil until fragrant and translucent. While onions are cooking, dice squash and sweet potatoes, toss with olive oil and roast for about 35 minutes on 375. Add in chopped kale and saute until slightly wilted. Add in vegetable broth and simmer on low. When squash and potatoes are finished, add into the pot with enough water to cover, as desired. I added the water one cup at a time until it was a thick soup consistency. You may want more or less. Let the soup simmer on low for about 10 minutes, then add in shredded chicken, if using, and one can of full fat coconut milk or coconut cream. Simmer for 10 minutes until flavors are combined. Serve with a dollop of coconut cream.

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