Sounds like a joke set-up but it’s not. Last month, I witnessed a guy get into a dumpster and close the lid. He didn’t come out. After 30 minutes, I called the police thinking what if he was sick, wounded, dying? Two squad cars responded within 5 minutes and he turned out to be none of those. But he was clearly disheveled, disturbed and in trouble. This incident weighed on my heart. How does one get to such a low point in life as to seek refuge in a dumpster? More importantly, what could I or anyone do to help? The mental health system continues to be overwhelmed. Police are getting special training in counseling and intervention. Street drugs have become the norm. Homelessness has arrived at our doorstep. So again, what can be done to help? I called back the police to thank them for their quick response and to ask what they suggest if a citizen wants to help in prevention or solution? The answer? 211. Ever hear of it? Me neither. Apparently, a lot of folks don’t know about it including my neighbors, my dentist, his assistant and pretty much anyone I’ve talked with in the last few weeks. 211 is the 911 for resources. Everything from suicide to abuse to hunger to shelter to senior needs and paying bills. It’s a clearinghouse for 50k programs and over 3k agencies across the nation and Canada. Anyone can call the 211 hotline and talk to an operator who is trained to listen and provide appropriate connections. Part of the 211 manifesto reads: WE BELIEVE in the transformative power of collective action. So do I. Please share this number. Visit 211.org to learn more about services and volunteering opportunities in your local community. Shine the light!
One of the oldest known distilled oils, cedarwood has a surprising myriad of benefits to bring into your home. If you’ve stood in the presence of these magnificent trees, you already have a sense of how fresh and reviving it feels to breathe in that air. One of the sacred trees used in clearing ceremonies, cedar has antiseptic and antibacterial properties. Our brain loves it. It’s restorative and calming at the same time. Grounding and uplifting. It can relieve arthritic pain, clean your counters and renew the scalp. HOW TO USE: A little bit goes a long way. Whether you distill or add to shampoo or lotion, a drop or two will do it. Always use authentic essential oil from a trusted source. Tip: When diffusing, I like to blend Cedarwood with Bergamot and Lavender. Like a walk in the forest, it provides the perfect ambiance for putting up the Christmas tree and enjoying the holiday spirit year-round. See my Resources Page for essential oil and diffuser source suggestions.
What do Air Wick, d-CON and Sani-Flush have in common? They are just a few of the 30+ power brands produced by the humongous conglomerate known as Reckitt Benckiser (RB for short). I’m focusing on Air Wick today as, once again, I am incensed by their continued false ad campaigns. Inspired by the latest blast by Truth in Advertising, I did some more digging. I wanted to know how a product that contains Dipropylene glycol monomethyl ether, Hexyl salicylate and a chemically derived camphor was getting away with it. Easy. They don’t list the ingredients on the label. None of their products do. Instead, they refer you to their website where you’ll find all the ingredients conveniently entitled “fragrance components” – wow. What’s more, RB has the nerve to claim that their Air Wick products “help people lead healthier lives” – really? I guess they’re counting on consumers ignoring the product ratings from EWG (Environmental Working Group) which has given every one of Air Wick’s 104 products a D or an F (scale of A to F) with warnings like: “Potential for skin irritation/allergies/damage; acute aquatic toxicity; nervous system effects.” So here’s my annual Buyer Beware reminder: There is no regulation for the terms fragrance, natural or pure. Branding pros can slap that on a label with no accountability. When in doubt, avoid anything with the word fragrance. Ditto the word scented. Never buy anything that doesn’t list the ingredients on the label. I use authentic essential oils daily and have for years but whether it’s oils, herbs or supplements – know your source and use wisely.
Join me Friday the 12th for a FREE and fun event. This 8th Annual Sustainability & Repair Fair brings a great group of folks together at the Garden Home Library in SW Portland. Lots of earth friendly products and information. You can even get your toaster fixed while you visit with vendors. Note: You can bring up to 2 items for repairs but they ask for a heads up. Click here for the Repair Fair registry. This event is so popular they now have to hold it in the adjacent gymnasium to accommodate everyone. And that’s a good thing! 5 to 7:30 pm. Corner of Oleson & Garden Home Rd. See you then!
A 5-star rating just in from a new customer in Maryland. “I love the cards! Each photograph is beautiful and fresh and the words apply to various things in your life. Simple ideas for changing your living space. Very nice quality and such a unique deck idea!” Thank you, Anjali. Happy to know the cards are now shining in MD! View more comments and photos from the ACP Wisdom Card deck.
Fall is officially here and most of us couldn’t be happier. Autumn is, in fact, THE most popular season of our nation. A Gallup poll done a few years ago ranked it number one with Summer coming in 2nd, Spring 3rd and Winter 4th. This is the time of year when I remind everyone (myself included) about the power of letting go. Whether it’s stuff in your space, weight on your heart or things in your head – letting go brings clearer energy and renewed strength. Like leaves that release from their branches, Nature shows us that it is the letting go that allows for new growth to happen. So, use this natural energy to help you remove and restore on all levels. It’s SO worth it!
Watch here for favorite tips on getting clear this season.
Temps are climbing to 100 degrees today, pollution levels are high and our long hot summer continues to test people’s patience and wellness. Here’s one way to help keep both you and your space calm and cool. Use a blend of lavender, lemon and peppermint essential oils in your diffuser. This combination aids in purifying the air, lifting your spirits and balancing energies. You can add more or less of any one of the oils depending on your preference (easy on the lemon as it’s more astringent). For even better results, place the diffuser next to your fan for greater dispersement! No diffuser yet? Add the oils to sea salt and place a handful in the corner of your shower to dissolve while you shower. Or toss the salt blend in tepid water for a foot soak. TIP: Make your oils go further. Fill the empty bottle with spring water…
Here’s my favorite drink for staying hydrated and pH balanced. Simple (just 3 ingredients) and satisfying, I drink this water year round but it’s especially refreshing during the summer heat. In a glass carafe or pitcher, add 1/2 sliced cucumber, juice of 1 lemon (or lime) and 1 bunch of mint leaves (about 15). Fill carafe with water. Cover and refrigerate for 4 hours. Sip on the water throughout the day for a tasty, alkaline treat. Brew will last up to 2 days. Even cooler tip: Before making a new batch, use the cut up cucumber and mint in your favorite smoothie recipe.
It’s always a treat to discover a business that is authentic and clear in it’s purpose. Newly opened Briar Patch Herbs in SW Portland is such a place and I’m delighted to announce it as the latest A Clear Place Winner for entrepreneurial spirit. From the extensive inventory of organic herbs to its repurposed wood shelves and tree decor, the shop exudes healing Earth energy. You’ll find highly regarded Floracopeia products along with a commitment to showcasing quality local vendors. Owner Sheri Copans is passionate about herbs and happily offers suggestions for both newbies and seasoned shoppers. Clearly the stars have aligned to bring this refreshing herbal oasis to the neighborhood. Congrats Briar Patch and here’s to a rewarding and enriching experience for all! Check out my review of Briar Patch Herbs on Google Maps: https://goo.gl/maps/8DteXJUwpdG2
How you start your day – even while still in bed – can have a huge impact on your well being. In this issue, I share a simple practice to help make a powerful shift. AND I’m still high from last week’s big event! Find out why I’m an unabashed fan of looking up. Plus, get in on a special ACP offer now through May. Spring celebrates the energy of new ideas and fresh starts. Here’s wishing you inspired thoughts and cloudy skies ahead! Read the latest ACP Enews.