Green Vibrance – Amp Up Your Water

I am always looking for little ways to improve my overall nutrition that are easy and affordable. But, smoothies are a hassle and most of the time I don’t want to cook. Then, one day, the clouds parted and through the sunlit opening, a magical little packet called “Green Vibrance” descended from the heavens.

Green Vibrance is a plant based, vegetarian powder you can add to any liquid. And yes, if you are a smoothie person, you can add it to that too! This probiotic packet aims to fulfill the 4 cornerstones of health: nutrition, digestion, immunity, and circulation. Their long list of ingredients (a good long list) includes powders that support the skeleton, liver, and immune system. It also includes probiotics, enzymes, adaptogens, plant based micro-nutrients, grasses, and fiber. According to their website, Green Vibrance contains “approximately 70 ingredients and all of the vitamins, minerals, enzymes, and probiotics the body needs to grow healthier and stronger.” They do, however have a small disclaimer. “With our constant improvement of our Green Vibrance formula we detected a tiny quantity of soy and dairy, byproducts of the probiotics in our formula. While only trace amounts, we disclose each ingredient, even trace allergens, because you deserve to know. “

I was ecstatic to have discovered my new found love that doesn’t make your water taste like grass and sewage. Plus, it always makes me happier knowing that I am doing good things for my body and mind. (stay happy y’all!) But why even consume greens in the first place?

Growing up, we were always told to “eat your veggies so you can grow big and strong!”. Though it seemed like torture then, especially when cookies were beckoning you from the cabinet, it was pretty sound advice. According to Choosemyplate.gov, “people who eat more vegetables and fruits as part of an overall healthy diet are likely to have a reduced risk of some chronic diseases. Vegetables provide nutrients vital for health and maintenance of your body.” In addition:

  • Eating a diet rich in vegetables and fruits as part of an overall healthy diet may reduce risk for heart disease, including heart attack and stroke.
  • Eating a diet rich in some vegetables and fruits as part of an overall healthy diet may protect against certain types of cancers.
  • Diets rich in foods containing fiber, such as some vegetables and fruits, may reduce the risk of heart disease, obesity, and type 2 diabetes.
  • Eating vegetables and fruits rich in potassium as part of an overall healthy diet may lower blood pressure, and may also reduce the risk of developing kidney stones and help to decrease bone loss.

I’m all for lowered risk of chronic diseases and better bodily maintenance, sign me up!

You can find the packets and the powder at Whole Foods or, of course, on the internet. Personally, buying the big thing of powder is a waste. It would just sit in my kitchen with the million other things I’ve attempted to consume for my health. The individual packet costs $2.39, while a box of 15 costs $32.00. Pair a packet with a 1.5L of water (~$1.39) and it’s cheaper than coffee!  I really do recommend getting a large water bottle to dilute the powder so you can barely taste it. Because at the end of the day if its good for you, but it tastes bad, are you really going to drink it?

This is my favorite water :3

I try to drink it every day I am at job #1, which is about 4 days a week. I have gotten out of the flow of drinking it before and I do notice a difference in my overall energy and mood levels compared to when I’ve been consistently consuming it. I contribute it to both the packet and the water.

Side note: make sure you finish the water in 24 hours. It’s not a good time if it has been sitting there. Trust me. If 1.5L seems daunting, make it into a game.

Side side note: I did find the packets cheaper on this website. A box of packets is $26.79 compared to the market price of $32.00

Love and Light,
Ze ❤

**Disclaimer: I am not affiliated with any links that I post. Any programs, products, sites, etc. I mention are for sharing purposes only.**

Mindvalley: Continued Education for Personal Growth

I’m the type of person who loves learning constantly. I went to school without a career in mind and just studied what I wanted to study. Now that I am out of school and going back isn’t really an option (thank you student loans), finding a way to stimulate my mind beyond books is a must.

Back in December 2018 through sufficient YouTube advertising, I discovered Mindvalley. It’s one of those places that offers free online seminars they like to call “Masterclasses”. I’ve ignored it in the past, but it wasn’t until the “spiritual fitness” class rolled around that I actually took a look at the site. Before I get into the spiritual fitness program, I’ll share with you more about Mindvalley.

Mindvalley was founded in 2002 by Vishen Lakhiani. It is an online institution, but they also meet all over the world. Mindvalley mission is to help people continue learning but cultivating real-life skills, most of them laying within the metaphysical realm. The different classes fall into the categories of productivity, mind & spirit, health, relationships, and careers. I’m aware that there are people who do not believe in such things as manifesting, affirmations and energy work. So if that’s you, consider that your heads up. 🙂

They offer loads of free 60 to 90 minute seminars with very interesting information. Of course towards the end, they will try to sell you the program, but of course, you do not have to enroll. Regardless, you get a pretty good, entertaining seminar. Before the program begins, they email you a link to a printable workbook to take notes during the class.

The spiritual fitness program called “Unlocking Transcendence” with Jeffery Allen is a 2-month meditation program. It is broken down into six 10-day focuses:

  1. Self-Awareness (Location and Time)
  2. Body- Awareness (Physical and Energy)
  3. Mind-Awareness (Inner and Outer)
  4. Spirit-Awareness (Intuition and Connection)
  5. Emotion-Awareness (Feeling and Empathy)
  6. Impact-Awareness (Personal and Global)

Each day there is a 10-20 minute guided meditation. Within the focus, the meditations build upon themselves. Jeffery Allen urges that if you miss a day, don’t worry about it and just continue on with the meditation for that day.

Honestly, I never imagined signing up for a program like this, but I had some pretty powerful experiences. I am glad I enrolled, and now I have the program to always go back to. Having a mind expanding tool like Mindvalley in your arsenal is integral when you feel blasé about life. It gives you something to think about and new avenues to explore. The length and flexibility of the Masterclasses provide a snippet of education for those who like the setting of their own home and not spending a dime!

To visit Mindvalley, click here
To view the Unlocking Transcendence Masterclass, click here
To view current Masterclasses, click here
To visit Mindvalley’s YouTube channel, click here

Ze ❤

**Disclaimer: I am not affiliated with any links that I post. Any programs, products, sites, etc. I mention are for sharing purposes only.**

Don’t Know Where To Start With Your Fitness Journey? Try here.

You really want to get into fitness. You go on Youtube, type in “workout for beginners” and thousands of videos pop up. You scroll through, looking at the thumbnails, the titles. After a few minutes, you finally decide on one. “Uh…I guess this one looks good”. You click on it. After the “skip ad” is clicked, the video starts. The instructor greets you. “WELCOME TO MY BEGINNER FITNESS VIDEO EVERYONE! ARE YOU READY TO DIE?!” “Wait, what?”, you ask yourself. “I CAN’T HEAR YOU! ARE YOU READY TO DIE? :D”. “Y…yes?” “GOOD LET’S GO!” The torture ensues. You’re drenched after only a few minutes in. “GUESS WHATS NEXT?!”, the instructor asks. “What?”, you moan. “30 REPS OF BURPEES!” Nope. You turn that video off. “Eff this fitness crap! I. Am. DONE!”

Has this ever happened to you before? You’re motivated and really, really try to work out, but you just can’t find a good fit? Even if it’s a beginner workout, it still seems to be too much? It has definitely happened to me. I’ve been active my whole life, but it was only about 2-3 years ago when I started doing longer, more challenging workouts. I gradually increased how long I would work out over time. I started, however, with doing just 10 minutes a day.

There is a channel that paved the way for my fitness journey, it is called Blogilates.

Cassey Ho is a super bubbly Pilates instructor. She built her company from the ground up and now has over 4 million subscribers. Her channel appeals to mainstream with its well designed videos, clean graphics and song choices. As she has gained in popularity, Cassey has a lot of collaborations with other fitness instructors. She also has a passion for fashion and has since be able to create her own athletic wear. Cassey’s channel is packed with information about how to eat healthy for cheap, typical fitness struggles, addresses dieting myths, and more. She also shares her own journey and struggles with fitness- very relatable ones at that.

The Blogilates channel has loads of videos to choose from including a bridal boot camp series, apartment-friendly series, and a PIIT series (Pilates intense interval training, Cassey’s own creation). To see a complete list of her videos, click here. Some are complete workouts (includes warm up and cool down), but most do not. Make sure you do a light cardio warm up and some stretches afterward.

What’s good about her videos:
-they’re short
-they’re effective
-they’re a great introduction to building strength to taking on longer workouts.

Cassey really has created a fitness empire. From filming videos in her college dorm to filming in her own studio, Cassey now goes on tour with her program POP Pilates. Through this program, you can become a certified POP Pilates instructor. For more information, click here.

Blogilates was my first fitness channel when I decided I wanted to get serious about working out. Back then, I believe she had the subscribers in the hundred thousands, so it is really awesome to have watched her growth over all these years. I am really happy she had the chance to combine everything she loves doing and make a successful living off of it.

Keep in mind that these are Pilates videos and that is just one of many fitness styles. If this isn’t your cup of tea and you’re still searching for something you like, keep trying different things! There’s yoga, weight training, running, marital arts, kickboxing, CrossFit, and so many other ways to get your body in shape.

P.S She now creates these super adorable and relatable comics.

To visit the Blogilates YouTube channel, click here.
To visit the Blogilates Instagram, click here.
To visit the POP Pilates Instagram, click here

Ze ❤

**Disclaimer: I am not affiliated with any links that I post. Any programs, products, sites, etc. I mention are for sharing purposes only.**

Take A Break – Your Sanity Depends On It.

Some of you may have noticed that I didn’t post anything last week. I work two jobs and just started taking self-defense classes. I really tried to, but with all that, the Easter holiday week, and a local strike that increased our business, I was burnt out. I wanted to run away. I wanted to just lay in bed and sleep forever. Those feelings usually signal that I need a break, time to recharge more than I usually do. But how do you do that when you still have to work, pay bills, and uphold commitments? I’ve discovered the answer is prioritizing.

Take a look at your week. Write it out. Mark down when you work, any necessary things- like picking up children-, and any social things going on. Now, take a look at how much time you can spend on yourself. How much is there? Is there any at all? MAKE TIME. Your health depends on it. Cancel anything and everything you can. Maybe that even means calling out from work for one day, or leaving early. You’d leave if you physically weren’t feeling well, right? Mentally feeling well is just as important.

If you’re the type of person who is recharged by social engagements, by all means, make contact with people you haven’t seen, and go out a little more than usual. If you’re the type of person who is drained by social engagements, cancel whatever isn’t necessary. If you’re dreading doing something or going someplace in this current moment, don’t go. Don’t worry if they’re gonna be mad or if you don’t want to disappoint someone. Your health is on the line and if they are truly your friends, they will know you and understand that you really just need time to yourself.

Also, be extremely kind to yourself, well always, but especially right now. You may already be on the verge of an outburst or a breakdown. If there is something you’ve been wanting to buy or a treat you’ve been craving, go ahead. I always feel like I’m reverting back to a child like-temper when I am overwhelmed with life- being extremely sensitive to everything. So treat yourself as such, and be loving and compassionate. Note that needing/giving yourself a break DOES NOT make you weak. In fact, it helps you become stronger mentally, emotionally, and physically. I’m spanning this post across all three of my categories because it really does affect how you stay happy, healthy and fit.


Stay Happy.
Taking a break from things is a necessity for your mental health! During last week, I found myself becoming short with people and just wanting to cry whenever anybody asked me anything. All I could think about was what I had to do when I got home, but when I got there, I would just put on Arrow and stay in bed. I knew that I hadn’t come up with two posts for last Wednesday. I had ideas, but when it came down to writing them, I had nothing. I was drained. I even started thinking “what if this happens all the time? Why did I start this blog? How am I gonna keep it going?” It snowballed and I started feeling ugly things. But in all actuality, that’s not truly how I feel about Cottontail Living, I love it. I love writing and sharing with you guys. It took a lot to be brave enough to not post anything- I didn’t want to disappoint anyone who reads my blog. I could not, however, ignore the fact that my energy wasn’t there in terms of writing. It was there when I took my self-defense classes.

I learned to go where energy flows and not to make myself do something because of a schedule I set up for myself. I really just wanted to attend my class and hang out with people. So, I suspended my writing and anything else with an approaching deadline and did those very things. And, I had such a great time. I followed where I was already putting my energy to and now I feel restored. Sometimes we set such rigid rules or routines for ourselves that we think they are permanent things in our lives that we HAVE to adhere to. Life is never like that, though. It is constantly fluxing and flowing, and just like that, we should learn to do the same. It’s kind of like the buildings they have where earthquakes are frequent- the structure sort of moves with the motion to minimize damage as opposed to a solid structure that can crumble under too much stress.

Stay Healthy.
Taking a break is also healthy for your body. A common thing with companies nowadays is to cut the workforce and put more responsibility on employees without proper compensation. This physically wears you down depending on how hard of a worker you are. Stress is contributed to so many health ailments such as weight gain, depression, heart disease-just to name a few. It causes such an imbalance to your thought process by putting stress on the mind and it can disrupt your eating habits. If you’re so busy, when you have a moment to eat it’s probably going to be something not so great for you. Stress and overwork can also disrupt your fitness routine. When you’re overwhelmed and work late every night, do you sacrifice sleep or fitness before the morning comes and you have to go back work again? But guess what, you’re only human! You need to establish and uphold boundaries so you don’t become miserable and get to this state in the first place. Don’t let anyone make you feel like you need to push past your limits just to be a good worker.

Stay Fit.
Believe it or not, taking a day, or a couple days not to workout helps you get stronger. You’re allowing your muscles and body to heal by giving them time to recover and grow. If you’re sore or even injured and you push through the pain, you do not help anyone. You especially do not help yourself. If you workout under those conditions, you’re stressing your body out more and causing further injury. Muscles don’t just change while you’re working out, what you do after the workout is just as important- even more so. Eating right, sleeping enough, staying hydrated are all key factors in healthy physical transformation.

Of course I say all of this within reason. Please don’t quit your jobs or not pay your bills or eat all the junk food in the world for a week. I am simply saying that there are moments when energy seems to come to a boiling point and our sanity balances on the precipice of “well” and “not well”. It is more than acceptable and understandable to just stop for a minute, an hour, a day or two days and just breathe.

In the words of Ariana Grande, “just keep breathin’, and breathin’, and breathin’.” Everything is always going to be okay. Life is meant to be enjoyed and experienced. All we can ever do is take it one breath at a time.

-Ze ❤

**Disclaimer: I am not affiliated with any links that I post. Any programs, products, sites, etc. I mention are for sharing purposes only.**

Why do you want to get fit?

Why do you want to get fit? Is it just to lose weight? Is it to fit society standards? Do you want to be strong and capable in your everyday life? Or do you just want to look good in a bikini? This question is VERY important because it is the whole foundation on which you begin your fitness journey.

I think this country has an obsession with unrealistic expectations and doctrines on what a person should look like even when they have absolutely NO RIGHT in brainwashing you into being anything other than the perfection that you are right now. So working out for the right reasons will help you achieve your fitness goals and maintain them. This will also morph and change over time. That’s perfectly okay. I’d like to share a little story about my personal journey with this question.

Back in high school in the early 2000s, I wanted to get thin. I wanted to starve myself and be beautiful because that’s what everything around me, even other girls my age, were telling me. I never ended up starving myself, though, because somewhere deep down it just felt wrong. I did, however, not eat for long periods of time and then binge. HARD. Crap food, too. As I’ve mentioned in another post, I’m an active person. I had no problem working out. But my mind wasn’t well. I didn’t care about the food I ate, mainly out of ignorance. Back then, nutrition wasn’t really a big thing and clean eating just sounded weird.

It wasn’t until my late 20s when I finally understood the old adage “your body is your temple” and “you are what you eat”. Your body is the home for your soul while you’re living life as a human being. It needs to be treated with love and respect, just as you would your best friend. With that in mind, I had to reevaluate why I was doing what I was doing. What was the purpose of putting my body through work outs every day and no longer eating all the lemon poppy seed muffins in the world? I came up with the following:

  • I want to be physically strong
  • I want to be mentally strong
  • I want to learn how to move my body in so many different ways
  • I want to learn practical movements that help me through every day life
  • I want to feel like I’m Lara Croft and able to kick somebody’s ass

Our bodies are the vessel in which we’ve been given in this lifetime to express ourselves. And what you put into your body (food, body products, what you breathe in, etc) effects every part of you, which can alter and constrict, or reform and expand your inner beauty. Because a healthy soul makes a healthy human.

Getting fit isn’t just about the physical aspect. And eating clean isn’t just a diet. You also need to become aware of your mental state- heal your mind. Welcome your emotions and try to figure out where they come from. Guided meditations are a fantastic way to be your own therapist and figure out what’s going on there. And by figuring out why you react the way you do and think the way you think, you heal your soul. Along with food.

I cannot stress this enough. What you eat is not just a diet. IT’S A LIFESTYLE CHANGE. Diets are temporary. You begin them knowing that you’re not going to keep it up. You need to make the commitment to eat better for the rest of your life. Would you feed your pet crap food, stuff that’s highly processed and synthetic? I really hope your answer is no, and you shouldn’t be eating that food either!

And you don’t need to calorie count. I never did nor do I now. Because if you have body and mind awareness, you listen to your body and only want to feed it with nurturing nutritious foods. Does that mean you can never have a Snickers bar again? Hell no. Every month to a couple of months, you can bet your bottom dollar that I buy myself a big bag of flaming hot Cheetos and eat the entire thing in one sitting. AND I AM DAMNED PROUD. At the end of the day- and I’m sure you’ve heard it before- it really is about BALANCE.

So, please treat yourself- and others- kindly. We’re all going through different things and different human experiences. If others are mean to you or think poorly of you, it’s a reflection of them- not you. You’re in control of your own mind and actions. Make a commitment to be the best version of yourself you can be. Happiness is contagious. Your body and your life are not prisons. If that’s what it feels like, then ask yourself “why?” and dedicate your energy to healing that.

No matter what you believe, life is a gift that we have been given. Make the most of it. In a quote I recently heard (not sure by who) it said: “you were not meant to take this life personally”. Only you know your own truth. Anyone’s opinions and ideas of how the world works effects them, and them alone. Be your own warrior and your own healer. Love, honor, and cherish everything you are- the light and the shadow, the good and the bad.

You’re perfect, and you’ve always been enough. You don’t need anyone telling you otherwise 🙂

-Ze ❤

**Disclaimer: I am not affiliated with any links that I post. Any programs, products, sites, etc. I mention are for sharing purposes only.**

Staying Afloat

So what happens when everything feels like it is falling apart? Like the ground before you has disintegrated into water and an unseen current has swept you off your feet? I don’t know about you, but for the past few days, I feel like I’ve lost my foothold on life- as if my mind is swimming in the depths of a dark abyss.

How do you maintain a happy state of mind when you feel like you’re struggling just to stay afloat? This is something I’ve been asking myself. Staying happy is a choice, yet sometimes it doesn’t come all that easily. But, IT IS POSSIBLE to bring yourself back. It is possible to regain a more positive mindset. Below are things that I’ve found to be helpful during this time.

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• Rearrange what your life priorities are
Think hard about why you’re feeling the way you are. Is your job not sitting right with you anymore? Did something happen that triggered old emotions? I usually like to take this time to sit down and write out my priorities in life. For 5 minutes, write about what you’d like your dream life to be like in 5 years. Imagine there are no boundaries, no limitations (because there actually aren’t) and describe your perfect life in such vivid detail. Then reflect and figure out how to make that life happen. Because you deserve it.

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• Go to people that make you happy
The company you keep can either help ease your mind or exacerbate the chaos. If you need some alone time, take it, but be careful not to shut people out during this time. Reach out to those who won’t judge you, those who will just listen and hold your hand without saying anything. Sometimes, we just need the presence of another human next to us. And a good hug. People who do this are so, so important. (that awesomely awkward picture, tho? Because, internet.)

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• Make a small daily or weekly goal
Every day or every week create a small goal, something you enjoy and look forward to that can carry you over from one day to the next. Maybe it’s just laying in bed, or reading a book you’ve been meaning to read. Maybe there is a new Netflix film you’ve been wanting to watch. Or maybe you just want a dang cupcake. Whatever it is, having a small victory can help boost your spirits while taking life one day at a time.

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• Essential oils
Orange essential oil is great to brighten up the senses. In emergency cases, I even put some on right under my nose so I can smell it constantly. Make sure the oil is skin safe. I also like to keep amber and rose oil in my arsenal. Amber helps to ground you. And rose promotes universal and self-love.

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Color therapy
Surround yourself with bright, happy colors. Like essential oils, colors can greatly effect your mood. Change the background on your phone or computer to something so over-the-top it’s ridiculous. The brighter, the better.

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Crystals
Crystals give off a certain vibration that resonate with certain emotions. By choosing crystals like smoky quartz, black tourmaline, and tiger’s eye, you’ll feel more grounded and protected in your environment.

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Music
Pay particular attention to the lyrics of the music you’re listening to. Sad melodies or painful lyrics will only help to keep feeling blue. Like colors and crystals, music is made up of certain vibrations and frequencies that resonate on certain levels that can perpetuate low, unpleasant emotions. Instead, put on music that makes you want to dance and be happy! Hannah Montana is my go-to. The song “Life’s What You Make It” is my jam.

What I keep telling myself, and what I’m telling you, is: it’s going to get better. Just like the tides, emotions ebb and flow. It’s the natural course of things. Take a deep breath. You are not your emotions. Your soul runs deeper than that. We wouldn’t know what happiness is if we didn’t know what not being happy felt like, right?

Ride the wave of your emotions, and try your best not to get dragged down.  We’re all in this together. And you are NEVER alone. If you feel that way, please, please reach out. I am always here for you.

In the words of Hannah Montana, “life’s what you make it, so let’s make it rock!”

-Ze ❤

**Disclaimer: I am not affiliated with any links that I post. Any programs, products, sites, etc. I mention are for sharing purposes only.**

Nutrition Bars

Nutrition bars are supposed to be a great way to get good nutrients on the fly. They give you protein, fiber, and vitamins. “Keeps you fuller longer! 5grams of sugar! 18 grams of protein!” While that may be true, they also give you a lot of crap. Bars can be highly processed and contain a lot of fillers and nonsense to bind them together. Have you ever actually read the ingredients of say, a cliff bar or a quest bar? shudders

When I was in college, I used to eat a lot of nutrition bars- KIND bars in particular since it seemed healthier of the options. I just listened to the front label and never read the ingredients. So, I’d grab about 3 of them and call it a day. I’d always have bad indigestion and get bloated afterwards and couldn’t figure out why. It wasn’t until I brought this problem to a friend. She told me that they aren’t real food. I was baffled. “But they were marketed as that…and there are real ingredients in it…,” I said. My friend repeated herself. “It’s not real food”. It wasn’t until a few years later that I actually understood what she meant. It wasn’t a whole food- limitedly processed, free from crap, genuinely nutritious food. It was like the veil had been lifted from my eyes.

The Issue

I want to break this down for you. I obtained an ingredients list from an article on Self.com titled “The FDA Says KIND Bars Are Healthy Again“. It reads “the ingredients in KIND bars vary depending on the flavor, but an almond and coconut bar contains almonds, coconut, honey, glucose syrup, rice flour, soy lecithin, chicory root fiber, sugar, and sea salt—a relatively short list that leaves the bar with 190 calories, 12 grams of fat, and 12 grams of sugar.”

Yes, its a relatively short list. Yes, it doesn’t have many calories. BUT ITS PACKED WITH SUGAR! And not natural sugar. Honey, glucose syrup, and sugar. 3 of the 9 ingredients are sugar! Also, do you know anything about glucose syrup, soy lecithin, and chicory root fiber without looking it up? Neither do I.

Bars are advertised like they are some God-sent gift to humanity, but they really aren’t. As you can tell, I have a personal gripe with them.

The Solution

You’re better off getting a piece of fruit or unroasted, unsalted nuts. Other on the go snack ideas are grass-fed cheese sticks, grass-fed drinkable yogurt. Olive snack packs (only the Kalamata are free of crap). Popcorn (Boom Chicka Pop or Skinny Pop).

If you need bars in your life, I do recommend these two brands. They have all good stuff and actually taste pretty good:

LÄRABAR – they have only 6 ingredients in them and come in a variety of flavors. Dates make up the majority of these bars, however.

Perfect Bars – who doesn’t like peanut butter! (unless you’re allergic 😦 ) These bars are mixed with 20+ superfoods. I’d stick to the regular, peanut butter one. Just please, don’t try the brownie one. It’s a lie.

As with everything, make sure you read the ingredients on the back, and if you don’t know what something is, neither does your body. But if you eat unprocessed foods like fruits, veggies, rice. Etc, that becomes a non-issue!

Ze ❤

**Disclaimer: I am not affiliated with any links that I post. Any programs, products, sites, etc. I mention are for sharing purposes only.**

Book Review – Guides, Guardians, and Angels

By: D.J. Conway
Pages: 176
ISBN: 978-0-7387-1124-9

Guides, Guardians, and Angels is a book for learning how to contact your spirit guides. It is a great book for those who are interested in learning about each of the topics listed in the title, providing a brief history for each, color and crystal associations, and plenty of meditations. At the back of the book, there is an appendix and an extensive “books of interest” section, providing numerous titles to further your reading as well more information on the chakra system, a visual map of the meditations, and more.

D.J. Conway writes in a way that alludes to a least a beginner’s knowledge in the new age realm. I recommend this book if you are already familiar with basic spiritual and occult concepts. That isn’t to say, however, that this cant is your first experience into this world. Just have an open mind while reading. The same can be said of anything we come across in this life.

Conway’s book primarily focuses on debunking common misconceptions about angels as we know them by dedicating 3 chapters to the subject. It’s all very fascinating. I did learn a great deal about new things, which is always exciting. As for the things I was already familiar with, my conviction behind them only became greater.

Though guides, guardians, and angels exist in some form or another in all cultures worldwide, the way this book was written seems to have stronger pagan/Wiccan roots in terms of her methods of interacting with the entities. Conway does, however, provide each mediation with options for Wiccans, pagans, and new age followers. It seems the best way to use the meditations is to record yourself reading them aloud then playing it back. Regardless what your beliefs are, the imagery in the meditations is so beautiful and serene. At the very least, it’s a great vacation for your mind! Try them out and see what happens.

Overall, I believe this book to be a great piece of knowledge for any library, whether you’re a beginner or adept on the subject matter. With a list of correspondences, color meanings, and loads of meditations you can record on your phone, it is a must-have!

Ze ❤

**Disclaimer: I am not affiliated with any links that I post. Any programs, products, sites, etc. I mention are for sharing purposes only.**

YouTube Dance Fitness

It’s not always about going to the gym, lifting weights, or doing traditional cardio. There are so many different types of fitness styles out there- you should never feel limited in your choices! People do a lot of sitting nowadays, but your body was made to move and move in so many different ways. And there’s nothing that makes people want to move their bodies more than music. That, or if you’re being chased by a dinosaur or something…

Music is fun. Dancing is fun. Both things have been around for hundreds of years- they’re celebratory things, and you have so much to celebrate! You’re alive! And I’m so happy that you are! More scientifically, dancing is an easy way to build up your cardio, boosts serotonin, and relieves stress. It also strengthens the muscles, improves coordination, and encourages a full range of movement.

There are many dance fitness accounts on YouTube. Below, I’ve shared my top 3 channels. I’ve watched these videos time after time and they’re always enjoyable. Most of the time they are recent songs like you hear on the radio. Just pick a song and follow along!

Refit is a great channel that has wide variety of songs that aim to instill positivity. They also have a mix of Christian music. This channel is great for any level of fitness. There are so many songs to choose from including modern hits as well as throwbacks.

The Fitness Marshall will definitely get you sweating. With more intense chorography style, this channel has all of the latest hits you’d find on the radio. You’ll feel like you’re going to the club rather than working out! Caleb Marshall is hilarious and full of high energy!

Shine Dance Fitness is a good mix between ReFit and The Fitness Marshall. The music choice includes hits as well as songs less commonly known. Regardless, this channel offers up a variety of movements that will make you feel badass.

Dance fitness is a quick way to get your heart pumping. Try doing a song or two for a great warm up before any other workout or just play your favorite song just for the hell of it! Reframe your mind when it comes to working out and move that body!

-Ze ❤

**Disclaimer: I am not affiliated with any links that I post. Any programs, products, sites, etc. I mention are for sharing purposes only.**

Mango Butter – Your New BFF

What is that, you ask? My latest obsession and your new cosmetic best friend.

Mango butter comes from the de-shelled kernel of the mango tree. It is a semi-solid butter and turns to liquid around 84°f. BUT it is malleable enough that it warms up in your hands. It’s super hydrating and not greasy, like coconut oil. Mango butter is packed with vitamins A and E, essential fatty acids, and natural antioxidants. All of these fancy things help prevent sun damage, wrinkles, pimples, and also helps to heal dry, damaged skin. The best part is it only has one ingredient: mango butter. None of that filler that is found in pretty much any body care product! I recommend reading this article on The Best Organic Skin Care for more information.

I use it as a face moisturizer AND a body lotion. Being prone to extremely dry skin, this has been the only thing I’ve discovered that nourishes it. Once I started using mango butter as a face moisturizer, my face got the hydration it needed and I had fewer pimples- since apparently dryness was the cause of them in the first place. Many articles on the topic mention that it is easily absorbed. I have found this to be true for the most part- definitely as a body lotion- but make sure you use a thinner layer if you’re using it as a face moisturizer.

There are tons of DIY recipes you can find to amp mango butter up as a hair mask or moisturizer. But honestly, it can be too much work. It works just fine as is. 😉

If you’re interested in trying this versatile product, I recommend these:

Remember, in any product, whether it be food, cleaning, or cosmetic, its important to know where it is coming from (i.e small business or big corporation) and how the products are sourced (ethically or unethically). It should be good for you and the environment!

-Ze ❤

**Disclaimer: I am not affiliated with any links that I post. Any programs, products, sites, etc. I mention are for sharing purposes only.**