I’ve always had allergy issues. Then I married my husband, who has also always had allergy issues. And now we’re finding out that our littles ALSO have allergy issues. No surprise there, I guess. Do you have allergy sufferers at your house?
Allergies can impact people inside their homes and outdoors. While you can’t control what’s happening outside your front door, you have a little more control of your environment at home. I’ve been doing lots of research on this, of late, and while cleaning can reduce allergies, many times people turn to chemical products for cleaning which can make allergies worse and take a toll on the environment. In fact, did you know that there are more than 80 different chemicals in regular household cleaners today? With the following four chemical-free cleaning tips, you can reduce the way that allergies can impact you in your home, reduce the amount of chemicals you are exposing your family to, and do more to “go green” as you clean!
Clean Your Home with Natural Products
Did you know that you can remove 99 percent of bacteria and allergens using hot water with a little vinegar in it and a good cleaning cloth? If you find the vinegar smell a little too strong, dilute it and add some fresh lemon or orange juice. Cleaning your home without chemicals is much healthier for your family and more eco-friendly. When you’re done, you’ll feel great that your home is clean and smells naturally fresh.
Anyone who reads this blog regularly knows that I have Celiac Disease, and I eat gluten-free.
These days, it’s much easier to eat gluten-free than it ever used to be, thanks to ready-made meals and snacks. You can find a lovely section of gluten-free items in almost any grocery store, and the convenience is certainly welcome!
There’s just one problem I continually find with gluten-free foods: sugar. The sugar content in gluten-free foods is typically higher than in normal foods.
As we all know, sugar has become the new fat, meaning that more research into nutrition has made us realize that ingesting too much sugar is just as bad, if not worse, than consuming fatty food. Sugar in its natural form, found in fruits and in starchy vegetables, is fine and an important nutrient in brain development. What is problematic is our sugar-filled highly processed diet. Look at the labels! Everything we consume has ingredients that end in “-ose” or contain corn syrup. We are ingesting far too much sugar in one day, most of it the product of chemical combinations that are not very healthy for our body.
The problem with consuming so much sugar is that it raises our level of insulin in the blood, which will have long-term damaging effects such as diabetes, slowed metabolisms, hyperactivity, and over eating. Let us not forget the epidemic of obesity in our society, a phenomenon that people could turn around if they reduced their daily intake of sugar.
A couple years ago, I eliminated all high fructose corn syrup from our home. As I come across more and more items that are “bad”, I continue my journey of elimination – searching for better alternatives and altering our eating habits, bit by bit by bit. Because doing it all at once can be overwhelming!
We’ve been trying out a variety of new foods for the twins, since they’re now 14 months and open to eating just about anything. But it’s a whole new world for them…and for me! I try to keep things well-rounded, healthy, and tasty. All of that without unknowingly inciting a 1-year-old temper tantrum! HA!
It got me thinking: I wonder if it gets easier or harder to feed kids as they get older? I mean if your kids are in school, and you’re running low on ideas for how to pack healthy school lunch box foods they actually love, what do you do? And if your kids are picky eaters, you can understand why packing a school lunch is becoming cumbersome. You’re at that point where you’re looking for some fun, new ideas, right?
Consider the following five healthy school lunch foods your kids will love!
Creatively Cut Foods
You don’t have to be super creative to have fun with food. A cookie cutter in the shape of your child’s favorite cartoon character or animal will do the trick. Some star shapes or hearts can help accent your masterpiece, and your child’s lunch sandwiches or snacks will be far from boring.
Most anyone reading this knows that we recently became parents. Well, I guess we’re still considered recent, right? The girls are almost a year old – does that count us as “new” parents still? Golly, it sure does feel like it some days!
As sweet and cute and wonderful as our 11-month-old twin girls are – I mean, seriously – aren’t they the cutest?!
(Let me explain the expressions here: Bug (left) was OVER the photo shoot. She was tired of being made to jump through hoops. That’s about it. Boo (right) was hot. And a little tired. But mostly just hot. Lots of sighing coming from her. Don’t worry. This was the last picture we took before I took off their headbands and popped them into their shady stroller with bottles of water. They lived to laugh at this photo. As they laugh at all photos of themselves.)
Anyhow…slight rabbit trail…
As sweet and cute and wonderful as they are, I’m still constantly looking for answers about them. Answers about what makes them tick. Answers about what foods are best for them right now. Answers about their behavior. Answers about their milestones.
And I happen to be pretty picky as to who I take my advice from. I’m just sayin’! There are a LOT of answers out there, but are they the RIGHT answers?!
In the end, there’s one thing I already know.
If there’s one thing I love, it’s when things smell nice. And if there’s one thing that’s sometimes hard around a home that includes 2 11-month-old twins, a dog, a cat and a husband…it’s getting things to smell nice. HELLO. Can anyone testify?!
Sure, I have some favorite air freshener brands, but sometimes I’ll get on the band-wagon with a new scent, and a couple weeks in, I can’t even find the scent in the stores anymore! Or, if it’s a scent that everyone else likes, too, it sells out before I can get my next purchase in!
So when Mark Callison from Scentfill.com contacted me to see if I was interested in reviewing some of the Scentfill products, well – color me intrigued.
As I stopped to do a bit of research, I first discovered that Scentfill has a category of products are 100% all-natural. That’s a HUGE deal for me these days, folks. I’m so sick of the chemicals and additives that are sneaked into our lives on a daily basis! If it’s all-natural, then it’s definitely for me! (And these are the FIRST 100% natural plug in air freshener refills available – so now you know!)