Three MORE tips that no one else told you to make back-to-school easier

In my efforts to get back to school in one piece (and help you too), I realize that EVERYONE has back to school tips.  Even TARGET has back to school tips! Mine, however, have nothing to do with notebooks, or lunch boxes, or even homework.

Because, when it comes right down to it, if you don’t feel amazing when life changes, all bets are off.  When we  (or our kids) are stressed out, the weather starts to change, and the days get shorter the amazing energy we felt all summer starts to wane and the sniffles, the scratchy throat, sinus headaches are knocking on the back door.

DON’T ANSWER IT! Instead, do these three simple things and have a great start to fall and a new school year:

  • GET OUTSIDE MORE and ditch the sunscreen.  Vitamin D is more effective at preventing the flu than even the flu vaccine (which in my mind isn’t saying a whole lot, but if you get the vaccine that might have some weight with you).  The easiest, most effective way to increase your Vitamin D levels is to be exposed to moderate amounts of sunlight every day (10-30 minutes a day is generally recommended).
  • Support immune function with essential oils and try reducing the amount of chemicals used in your house/diet/medicine cabinet.  For people who are challenged with pollen, changing weather, and pets, try lemon/lavender/peppermint soft gels (or add the oils to a little water and drink).  Only certain oils can be ingested, so if you want to know more, email me at
    • Attend my webinar on Periscope (a new app by Twitter)  about these three amazing oils later this month on August 24th at 7:30 pm.  Email me NOW if you want to register and receive a FREE gift package for the webinar (its interactive).  I’m sending them out on Wednesday August 19th so don’t delay!!
  • Make some homemade chicken soup and use BONE IN chicken.  Bone broth is extremely healthy and great for immune support!  Don’t wait for someone to get sick to make this.  It’s comfort food at its best and is great for changing seasons, left overs, as well as an easy light meal.  So, my mom was right about this delicious tonic being Jewish Penicillin.  :) Chicken soup is SOOOO easy to make!  Here is my recipe:

Easy Jewish Momma Chicken Soup:  takes about 10 min to set up and then cook on stove for 1 hour (or make in a crockpot!!). 

2-3 chicken thighs with bone IN

2-3 chopped carrots and celery stalks

1/2 to 1 medium yellow onion

2-4 cloves of garlic peeled and whole

1 vegan boullion cube (I love the one called Garden Veggie by Edward & Sons)

Bring to a boil and then simmer for an hour.  My kids LOVE egg noodles in it and matzo balls.  My husband loves it with fresh challah (not so healthy but yummy).

I hope this inspires you to start the school year/fall season off right.  Let me know if you have any questions or have a favorite tip/recipe to share!  :)

be well…Elyse

Back to School: Tips and Tricks To Keep Your Sanity And Keep Everyone Healthy.

backtoschoolAs Summer’s long lazy days come to an end and we start gearing up for school, life can get crazy really fast!  I see it all the time.  As moms, we have a lot on our plate to get each kid ready, sports starting up, making lunches–all that jazz.  Even if you don’t have kids going back to school, this is still a time of transition.  It’s either a transition to more freedom to work on our own goals, or we get lost in the shuffle.  Here, I share 3 tips for keeping your sanity, keeping your family healthy (stress always weakens the immune system), and fitting in the always important “ME” time.

Here I share tips and tricks that you won’t get anywhere else.  I mean, yes, we need all the help we can get, but just about every blogger, magazine writer, and newsletter is giving you all the same stuff you already know, which isn’t really helpful.  I have fallen into the same trap myself and its frustrating.  I promise not to do that here.  :)  So, I’m assuming you know to:

  • start getting the kiddos to bed earlier, and create a quiet routine
  • buy organic veggies and fruit for snacks (awesome easy ideas on this site–who knew Seventeen Magazine of all places! Can I just say, this was not easy to find.  Most blogs on this subject are either out of touch with what kids will take for lunch (too gourmet) or they are out of touch with most people (WAY to much wheat bread going on).  I’m not saying wheat bread is bad, but some bloggers out there just don’t get that most moms don’t have time to make homemade everything, and that most kids are just not gonna eat the stuff they are proposing! Back to reality…
  • get a big dry erase calendar–3 to 6 months is actually ideal–to write down where everyone needs to be and when.

So, assuming you already know these three very good ideas, let’s move on to advanced season transitioning. Staying sane when activities ramp up/seasons change/life happens is a year-round challenge.  This happens to EVERYONE!!!!  Life changes–that is pretty much a guarantee.  Here are 3 life-changers for you:

  1. Review tomorrow’s schedule before you go to bed (you may already do this if you are super organized, but many people don’t).  THEN (this is the part you are probably NOT doing), go to bed, write down just ONE thing you’re thankful for from that day, and DON’T watch TV or use the iPad, phone, etc.
  2. Breathe.  I know I have said this many times, but this IS a life changer on so many levels, so PLEASE do it.  Here is a super simple breathing exercise:  Breathe in counting to 4, hold for 4, breathe out counting to 4, and hold for 4.  Do this 4 times.  At first you might feel a little anxious holding your breath, but this is part of it.  RELAX!!!!!!  Be in the moment…you WON’T die or hyperventilate from doing this.  This will not only help you fall asleep, it will help you think better when you do this during the day. I love it!  It’s my new MUST DO exercise.
  3. Get some exercise!!!! (you knew this was coming :D).  Seriously, when I am under some super tight scheduling (which I work really hard to NOT do, but hey, life happens, right?), I literally do some jumping jacks, knee ups, push ups and planks on the bathroom floor before I take a shower.  I didn’t say it was pretty, but its effective.  You can do anything you want–sit on the toilet 10 times in a row, use a large shampoo bottle to raise overhead 20 times, touch your right hand to your left toes.  It doesn’t have to be complicated, but be sure to do this ONE THING:  do it fast.  Doing these exercises quickly will really get your blood pumping, your brain working, and make you feel like you can take on anything.  Make sure the floor is dry and safe before doing any exercises.  :)

Later this month (hopefully next week), I will have MORE tips to keep it together for yourself and everyone else.  Stay tuned and stay HEALTHY!  Let me know if YOU have a favorite tip or recipe!!!  Please share with everyone.

Talk to you soon!  be well…Elyse


mood management with food and essential oils


Ever have a day when:

  • you’re so distracted you get nothing done?
  • you feel like crying but you’re not sure why?
  • your brain is just fried from all the stress?

Maybe you know someone (or its you) who:

  • is a grump a lot
  • needs some focus help
  • worries about everything!

Believe it or not, what we put in and on our bodies have a significant effect on all these things.
Tip 1:  foods for better mood
If you haven’t heard about omega 3’s by now, you live in a cave and seriously need to get out more.  Omega 3 fatty acids are amazing for brain and heart health as well as reducing inflammation in general.  Eat more of these foods to get more omega 3 fatty acids, as well as taking a supplement:

  • walnuts
  • cold water fish like wild caught salmon, sardines, anchovies (my husband loves anchovies on his pizza)
  • chia seeds, hemp seeds, pumpkin seeds, ground flax seeds (grind them fresh)
  • spinach and basil

hmmm…this actually sounds like a really nice salad! YUM!!

Supporting your brain with molecules that make happy cells, allowing for secretion and uptake of serotonin and other neurotransmitters makes for happy, balanced people.


Even faster-working than nutrition are essential oils.  That’s because when you smell, they go right to the brain stem via the olfactory nerve. smelling and diffusing certain oils will change a person’s ability to deal with stress, focus better, even be happier.  Here is a very simple guide.

Stress:  Lavender, grounding blend, citrus oils like orange, and lemon are calming.

Feeling Anxious: Lavender, grounding blend, ylang ylang, roman chamomile

Focus and calming distractions: Lemon, vetiver, grounding blend, patchouli

Mood and emotional issues manifest in our bodies in many ways.  Essential oils and a balanced whole-food diet work hand in hand


Combining a good diet rich in brain supportive foods and essential oils can go a long way to heal brain inflammation caused by an imbalanced gut.  This just scratches the surface for Mood Management.  If you want more info, contact me.

Have a happy day!  Elyse

Two big things that will SAVE you from misery this summer

Summer…every year I get more nostalgic about it.  I don’t know if its because my kids are getting older or I’m getting older.  Summer is a time to change schedules, a time to relax a little more.  I remember going to the beach for swimming lessons and the water would be so cold!  I hated those swimming lessons!  Let’s just say, I wasn’t the most athletic person I knew.  What does summer mean to you?

One thing I LOVE about summer is experimenting with fresh veggies and fruits–using them in totally new ways, like making Raw Zucchini Spaghetti. Who would have thought that this could be so good!  Even my husband and kids ASK for it!  Crazy good!  Try it–its easy, it doesn’t heat up the house, and it tastes amazing!  win win win! Your friends will be extremely impressed too!

One thing I HATE about summer is bug bites.  I get eaten alive!  But, I finally found a solution that works and that you don’t have to wear a gas mask to use.  Last year when I was in the great state of Alaska (if you have never been, put it on your bucket list–it is AMAZING!!! I would totally move there!), where the mosquitos are joked to be the state bird, we used a natural bug spray that contained one very lovely essential oil:  geranium.  Its beautiful fragrance is surprisingly effective at repelling those little pests.  I have made my own bug spray out of water and about 10 drops of pure geranium oil and it works wonders!  I also put it in a diffuser when we sit on the deck and it keeps the bugs away.  Nature is truly amazing!

Summer also comes with scrapes, bruises, bee stings, sunburn, and sometimes a little too much excitement or stimulation for the kids.  Some  tips I will be sharing this week at my Natural Solutions To Keep Summer Fun class are:

  • one oil to spray that is like a liquid bandage and works wonders to heal scrapes and boo boos (helichrysm)
  • one oil that takes the itch and sting instantly from bee stings, heals sunburn, and calms an overstimulated person  (lavender)
  • a bath remedy that soothes sore muscles for the weekend warriors in your life.  (deep blue)
  • and more!

Plus I am giving out a FREE all natural bug spray just for coming (made with, you guessed it, geranium)!  Contact me for the address:  June 6th 10 am. If you are not in Cincinnati or can’t make this class, please contact me.  We can do a Skype or FaceTime class.  :) Ahh, technology!

Summer also means triathlons.  I will post about my triathlon group of ladies I’m training this summer.  I know they will be post-worthy!

Be sure to look through some of my previous posts.  I was just scrolling through and found some really good ones!

Happy summer!  Elyse

what you don't know about your pain reliever can be hurting you

Pain relievers causing pain somewhere else?

People who aren’t so health conscious might wonder why I am so anti-ibuprpainofen (including my family).  What’s the big deal, right?  It’s super safe, right?  Well, that depends on who you talk to…

Let me back up a sec.  I used to be a LOVER of NSAIDS, especially acetaminophen (also known as Tylenol) or ibuprofen (aka Advil) with sinus medicine in it.  It was the only thing that would alleviate my sinus headaches (I don’t get those anymore, unless I forget to take my vitamins).  I never thought I would try to avoid taking them at all cost.  They were my “friends” when I was in need.

Whoa, I am going on a tangent here, but this is important so hold on…

I meet so many women who take tons of pain relievers for “cycle” issues.  I am constantly amazed at how many women have this problem and just deal with it, taking 40 pills a week during their cycle.  Not only is this destroying their livers, it’s a signal that there is something not right going on down there, and we are just ignoring it.

I have to admit, I was going to write this article on something completely different–headache pain, muscle pain, etc–and list some essential oils that might help with that, but when I was looking up some hard research on the subject I clicked on this JEWEL of an article/abstract!  Oh wow!  hard core research from NIH about how marjoram, lavender and clary sage alleviated pain associated with “dysmenorrhea” or dysfunctional cycle after ONE application.   pain2

PLEASE, if you suffer from this, contact me for a sample.  Stop the NSAID madness, be nice to your body.  Listen to her–she is screaming for you to help her.  I will send you a sample right away. If it works, great!!  You may alleviate this pain from your life forever! Wouldn’t that be awesome??

I will write the other article another time.  For now, please SHARE with your lovely lady friends who may be even suffering in silence.

Have an amazing Tuesday!


P.S. If you have suffered from menstrual pain and used this or another essential oil, please share!!  leave a comment below.


Why I’m a Fitbit hater

I have a more than a couple of clients that are fitbit junkies, and even as someone whose passion is to motivate people to be healthy and move, this annoys me.
Fitbits and the like are extremely helpful in motivating people to get off their duff, to get the regular movement we need every day. Even I get motivated by that! What fitness-minded gal DOESN’T want bragging rights for 10 or 20,000 steps a day, right?

Here’s where I’m a hater: when clients tell me that they don’t come to their workout because they don’t get in as many steps during a strength workout as when they walk or jog around the block.

So, I’m setting the record straight. Here is the truth behind the controversy of strength vs. steps:
Study after study after study shows that, although there is value in cardiovascular exercise, strength training is better for your muscles, your brain, and weight management. So why, please tell me WHY would you waste an hour walking (not even walking in nature–I can totally see the value in that), instead of strength training for 30-45 minutes?

funk–are you stuck in it?

I’ve been working with a lot of people lately who are in a funk.  A mood funk, a body funk, or just worried about kids, money, their job, etc.  I’m in that lot, too.  When we fall into funkiness (I don’t know what else to call it, that word is so perfect), it can feel like we have fallen into a hole, or driven into a cul du sac.  We know how we got in, but we struggle to figure out how to get out.  Usually, some kind of vice like food, alcohol,  or TV placates us in our place of funk.

I use HGTV and chocolate covered almonds.  I love fantasizing about new ways to decorate my home to avoid thinking about all my worries.  And almonds are good for you, right??

What is your vice?

  • a glass of wine at night?
  • excessive running?
  • ice cream?
  • ???

The problem with vices and with cul du sacs:  even though it feels kind of comfy there (we know the scenery, maybe even the neighbors are nice, and the food is so damn good!), we are just spinning our wheels–we aren’t moving forward on the “grand highway of life.”  (I just made that up but it sounds so auspicious, doesn’t it?).

Let’s face it.  We ALL want to move FORWARD!  We don’t want to keep going around in circles looking for solutions to

  • our body image and health issues
  • our financial issues
  • our personal relationship issues

But, when we stay in this  “cul du sac” fantasy-dream state, going around and around, that is EXACTLY what we are doing.  We are, like my dog, chasing our tails.

I see it all the time.  People come to me thinking that I have some magic pill, some secret that will make them skinny in 6 months.  But they don’t want to do the hard work.

I’m not talking about the hard workouts.  I’m talking about changing.  THAT is the real work.


  • thinking habits
  • ideas about food and exercise
  • shopping and cooking habits
  • habits of abusing themselves with their thoughts

There’s a lot of information out there, so most people think they have the answers when it comes to losing weight or being healthy.

And, the truth is…

It’s not that complicated.  But, what IS complicated is filtering all the chatter inside your mind and out in the world.  The rationalization to eat or not to eat, to work out or not.  The negative thoughts inside your head, and maybe even what your spouse says out loud.  The chatter about “all the other times” when you did something only to fail.

THIS is what keeps us in the cul du sac in our minds and bodies.

My friend Christy and I have written a wonderful program that will show you the way out and onto the open road, where you can move FORWARD.  And we are offering it, with tons of support, next week in our Inner Beauty Challenge.  Click here to find out more.  Be a part of this first class and you will receive as an extra bonus:

  • $25 off!  BAM!
  • a free lemon essential oil mailed to you
  • my e-book on how to burn fat

You will also have an opportunity to earn $20 back when you fill our our survey at the end of the challenge.

Are you really ready to get out of your funk?  Life is too short to stay there.  Let’s explore the possibilities together!

I know I can’t wait!!!  Elyse