Switching to All Natural Deodorant..you may need to detox!

Making the Switch doesn’t have to be a smelly one! I have been making my own deodorant for 2 years now. But when I made the switch I didn’t know there may be a detox period so I thought the deodorant wasn’t working, but it wasn’t the deoderant it was my body getting rid of all the chemicals I had been putting on it!! ūüė≤

So let me me share with you what I have learned. When you are going from store bought deodorant to all natural there is sometimes a detox period that we must go though. So when you have been using deodorant that contains chemicals and begin using an all natural one here are some tips to help the transition! After doing a armpit detox I have noticed that I just don’t smell, in fact many days I don’t even need deodorant although when I am going to be out in the summer heat, out of the house for the day or when I go running I do apply because no one wants to stink like BO!

Read on for how to detox and 2 DIY deodorant recipes!

Detox your pits! through trial and error and lots of research I found a great way to do this from Wellness Mama. (I just love her)

You’ll just need bentonite clay, apple cider vinegar and water.

This is the bentonite clay I use: https://www.amazon.com/Aztec-Secret-Indi…/…/ref=sr_1_7_s_it…

I use braggs apple cider vinegar

1 tablespoon bentonite clay
1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
1-2 teaspoons of water (to get right consistency)

1. Mix all of the ingredients in a glass bowl (do not use metal!) with a wooden or non-metal spoon until about the consistency of sour cream.

2. Spread in an even layer over the armpits and allow to sit for 5-20 minutes. I suggest starting slowly and working up to a longer period of time once you see how your body adjust. If it hurts at all, remove immediately.
(This may cause some redness as it will increase blood-flow to the area, but it will go away quickly.)

3. Wash off in the shower or with a warm, wet washcloth.

4. Repeat daily or as needed until under-arm odor goes away and natural deodorant is non-irritating.

Also, make sure to drink a lot of water any time you stimulate lymph flow (dry brushing, massage, detox, etc) to help flush the body and avoid getting dehydrated.

The deodorant I use:
1 tbs baking soda
2 tbs kaolin clay
3 tbs coconut oil
2 tbs shea butter
1 tbs arrowroot
1 tbs beeswax
1 tbs rosehip (can use sweet almond or grapeseed)
20 drops Purification, 10 drops Lavender & Cypress (or you can use 20 drops purification and 10 lavender)

1. combine shea butter, beeswax and coconut oil in double broiler (or use a large glass measuring cup in pan of boiling water)

2. Remove from heat when all is melted.

3. combine baking soda, kaolin clay, and arrowroot to melted shea butter, coconut oil, and beeswax. Mix well.

4. in a separate bowl mix rosehip and essential oils.

5. combine rosehip/essential oil mix to deoderant base mix. Stir well.

6. pour into containers and allow to cool completely before use.

**If you need additional support while detoxing use one drop of purification to each armpit before applying this deodorant or other natural deodorants.

The deodorant my son likes and is a SUPER easy option for natural deodorant: make a 5ml roller bottle with jojoba or grapeseed oil + 20 drops of Purification

Not into DIY no problem!! Young Living has deodorant as well!!

Here is links to the ingredients I use to make my own.



DIY Winter Wellness

With winter fast approaching I wanted to share with you some of the small easy DIY staples that my family and I use. Hand purifier, rice sock, bath soak, and tea. Not only are these great for home but make a super nice gift basket.

The hand purifier we use daily, it’s simple to make and very convenient to carry in your purse, car, or backpack. ¬†I got my containers, vitamin E, and AloeVera from Amazon, here:¬†On the Go Containers¬†¬†Aloe Vera Gel¬†¬†Vitamin E

For the Rice sock, we love this simple little thing, you can tie it off at the end, sew it closed with machine or hand sew it, whichever is easiest for you. When we need heat for aching muscles we throw it in the microwave in 30 second intervals until warm, if we need it cold; toss it in the freezer for 20-30 min.
(note I have not had the rice burn in the microwave but you could add a tsp water to the sock before microwaving to ensure it doesn’t)
What you will need:
Plain Rice
: you can find this typically at Dollar Store or will be cheapest at local retailer. If you need gluten free this is an option: Gluten Free
Sock: I got mine at the local Dollar store, Any sock will work. I prefer to use adult size. Like these: Fun Socks you can also use one of the fuzzy socks.
Bath soak, I love my hot baths in the winter. This bath soak is one of my favorites for winter. I use a mason jar to store them in, but any airtight container will do. I use Young Living oils.
What you will need:

Epsom salts:Epsom Salts
Baking Soda: baking soda
Essential oils: Essential oils information
Wellness tea, I love this not only in the winter but year round. You can use whatever your favorite tea is. I choose organic unfiltered raw honey. I get ours from a local beekeeper…oh it’s delicious and good for you!

what you need:
Tea Variety pack tea

Honey Raw Honey
Cute coffee mug!
Essential Oils

handpurifier-diy rice-sock-diy wellness-bath-soak-diy wellness-tea-diy


Hot Process Soap

I love to make my soap a little differently every time but the base is the same. For this one I used coconut milk and Lavender. My family and friends love my soaps and it makes wonderful gifts for any occasion.


Hot Process Soap SUPPLIES:

-8 oz coconut oil
-22 oz other carrier oil (i like safflower)
-4 oz lye
-10.5 oz water
-crockpot (only to be used for soaps)
-2 glass mixing bowls
-kitchen scale
-stick blender
-color (eye shadow, powder clays, mica powder, or food coloring)
-essential oils or soap fragrance
-silicone loaf pan mold
-solo cup
*Your crockpot, glass bowls, stick blender, and spatula used to make hot process soaps should be dedicated to soap making.

Step 1: Measure out base oils

  • Starting with the solid oils, measure coconut oil and other carrier and place it into your crock pot that is set on low.¬†

Step 2: Measure out water and lye

  • measure out water into a glass bowl
  • measure out lye in solo cup
  • in well¬†ventilated area (either outside or under stove vent with fan on high) add lye to water.¬†IMPORTANT NOTE:¬†Always add the sodium hydroxide (lye) to the water. NOT the water to the sodium hydroxide. add a little at a time and stir with spatula.¬†

Step 3: Combine lye mix to oils

  • once oils in crockpot have¬†completely¬†melted, slowly add Lye water to your crockpot oils while using your stick¬†blender to mix well.¬†Maintain a steady, strong stirring motion. Not so fast as to splash but fast enough to keep the mixture in constant motion. Mix until trace- which is when it becomes like pudding.¬†

Step 4: Let Cook

  • allow soap to cook until edges are folding in and it is the consistency of mashed¬†potatoes. (if it starts to bubble over you can stir with spatula gently)¬†
  • while¬†this is cooking prepare color. add 1 tbsp safflower oil to mica or other colorant such as turmeric, red clay or other natural colorant, add enough color to get color you want.

Step 5: Add Color and or additives

  • you can add one color or several
    • to add one color just add mica oil mix to crockpot and¬†stir or swirl with¬†spatula¬†
    • to add more than one color.¬†
      • divide soap into section in glass bowls. one for each color you would like. Add each color you want into sectioned out soap bowls. you will want to work quickly so that soap does not begin to harden.
  • you can add¬†flowers at this time, just stir in.

Step 6: Add fragrance or EO

  • add¬†fragrance or essential oils into soap and¬†stir well with spatula, add as many drops as you need until desired smell.

Step 7: Scoop into Mold

  • for single color pour all of your soap into a loaf mold
  • for multiple colors pour one at a time in a layered fashion
  • Make sure to gently tap the mold on the counter to get any air¬†bubbles out.¬†

Step 8: Curing and Cutting

  • allow soap to sit in mold for 24-48 hours
  • once it is¬†hardened you can¬†remove it¬†from the mold.¬†
  • use cutter and cut into bars
  • store in zip lock bag or airtight container until ready to use.¬†

To make the lavender soap as shown, I used 8 oz coconut oil, 22 oz safflower oil, 4 oz lye, 5.25 oz water, and 13 oz can organic coconut milk. The water I used to mix with the lye and the coconut milk I added to my crockpot with coconut oil and safflower oil. I mixed in lavender and lemongrass essential oil and organic lavender buds, then once I had my soap poured into my mold I sprinkled Lavender on top and pressed it in gently with my spatula. Allowed to sit for 24 hours and then cut.

Lavender & Lemongrass Coconut milk Soap

Lavender & Lemongrass Coconut milk Soap



Skin Loving DIY

I made  some awesome skin Loving goodies this week as gifts!! I love these two and l wanted to share with you just why I Love them and recipes so you can make some too.

Cinnamon Orange Body Scrub smells amazing but also is made with ingredients that has many benefits for your skin!

cinnamon Orange Scrub

*Coconut oil is AMAZING all around but also very beneficial for your skin. Moisturizing, anti-aging, contains vitamin E, and when used in a body scrub aids in removing dead skin cells to reveal smoother skin.

*Cinnamon is great for skin!! Cinnamon has many benefits but some are to help to sooth and soften dry skin, also improves skin tone, reduce signs of aging, and aid in cleansing.

*Orange is great for moisturizing your skin, aiding in signs of aging, and refreshing for your skin!

Cinnamon Orange Body Scrub
1 cup organic sugar
1/4 cup + 2 tbsp coconut oil
9 drops Orange EO
1 tsp organic ground cinnamon
zest of 1 large Orange

In a small bowl mix up sugar and coconut oil, add zest of orange stir well and then add orange oil and stir well. then spoon into container and label. (these will keep for about 2 months) will make about 10 oz

Joyful Rose Sea Salt Bath Soak has a very relaxing scent, is skin nourishing and detoxifying.

Joyful Rose soak

*Himalayan salt is great for detoxification.

*Dried Rose petals are relaxing, moisturizing, and anti-inflammatory.

*Epsom salt is a natural exfoliant and anti-inflammation that is great for dry skin and sore muscles.

*Baking Soda helps to detoxify and soften skin.

*Joy Essential Oil is uplifting and smells wonderful. Joy contains Bergamot, Ylang Ylang, Geranium, Lemon, Coriander, Tangerine. Jasmine, Roman chamomile, Palmarosa, and Rose essential oils. Which is why this oil is one of my very favorites!

Joyful Rose sea salt bath soak
1/4 cup Himalayan salt
2 tbsp dried rose petal or buds
1/2 cup epsom salt
1/4 cup baking soda
5 drops Joy essential oil

You will want to use a food processor (I use my NutriBullet) to grind Himalayan salt until it’s finely ground. In small bowl combine himalayan salt, epsom salt and stir well. Then add baking soda and mix well. Next add your rose petals, these you will want to light crush and mix in well. Next add EO and mix well. Then spoon into container and label. will make about 10 oz



Tone it Up Bikini Series 2016

It’s that time again and I am very excited. I have been doing the Tone it Up bikini series every year since 2012. I love them, very inspiring, encouraging, and challenging. This is the series that got me hooked, when I found fitness balance in my life. Every year just gets better and better, and just when you think it couldn’t get any better it certainly does.

It’s completely Free! Yes, FREE you don’t have to have a gym membership; workouts can all be done at home.
I got the TIU members bundle, but for those of you would would like to join and don’t have a TIU journal I created a little spread sheet for you! Because I want you to have your best chance to be your best and do your best. I find that keeping a log helps me to stay on track, focusing on each day as it comes. ¬†If you haven’t signed up yet, there’s still time.¬†https://www.toneitup.com/lifestyle/sign-up-bikini-series/

TIU 2016 Bikini Series 8 week fitness tracker

TIU 2016 Bikini Series 8 week fitness tracker

Here is the link to the pdf of the fitness tracker: https://www.dropbox.com/s/ek04pkpe06lm25t/bikini%20series%20tracker.pdf?dl=0

Here is the link for the excel version of the fitness tracker:  https://www.dropbox.com/s/jul7t822961lwwi/Bikini%20Series.xlsx?dl=0

I will be checking in using Instagram, there is an amazing group of TIU girls there that will give you inspiration and support the whole way through.

Find me on Instagram @MerelyEssential

Find me on Instagram @MerelyEssential

Week 1 begins tomorrow April, 25th. You can find the first week’s workout schedule here:¬†https://www.toneitup.com/workouts/bikini-series-week-1-workout-schedule/



A Simply Blessed ThanksGiving

I hope that each and everyone had a wonderful ThanksGiving. We had a very blessed day and I am very grateful for every memory we made this ThanksGiving! My husband worked so our kids and I cooked, baked, decorated and had everything ready for when he came home. I went for my 3 mile run and happily made a gluten-free pie crust for our pumpkin pie, it was gobbled up so quickly I didn’t get a before picture but I did get a picture of the crust. I use a recipe from DIY Food Guy; you can find it here:¬†5 Min Coconut Flour Pie Crust¬†and don’t forget to scroll to the end and save your Gluten Free Sugar Cookie Recipe.


5 Min Coconut Four Pie Crust

For our main course I roasted a turkey, seasoned with essential oils and little pepper and basil. I personally don’t eat turkey but¬†my family loves it, so I make it for them every year and I love to try new recipes each time. This year I added 2 tbsp virgin olive oil with 1 drop Thyme essential oil, 1 drop lemon essential oil, and 1 drop basil essential oil. Glazed turkey and then sprinkled 1 tsp pepper and basil. Everyone loved it so much that we don’t have much for left overs from a 15 lb turkey. (I only use Young Living Oils to find out more click here:¬†Essential Oils)


ThanksGiving Turkey with Essential Oils

My daughter and youngest son made Ugly Sweater Cookies. They had a lot of fun making these.

IMG_0723                  IMG_0724
IMG_0733 IMG_0734

Gluten Free Sugar Cookies

You will need:

  • Gluten free flour
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 2 sticks unsalted butter, at room temp
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp lemon extract
  • 1 large egg or 1 tbsp flax-seed +3 tbsp water
  • 2 ounces cream cheese
  • powdered sugar for dusting, icing and sprinkles for decorating


  1. Place flour, baking powder, and salt in medium bowl and whisk to combine, set aside.
  2. Place sugar and butter in large bowl and beat with electric mixer until creamy smooth. Add extracts, egg, and cream cheese, beating to incorporate.
  3. Gradually add flour mixture and stir to combine. Divide in half and wrap tightly in plastic wrap. Refrigerate for at least one hour.
  4. Preheat oven to 350. Line cookie sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
  5. Roll dough out to 1/4 inch thick on a powered sugar-dusted work area. Cut cookies in to shapes.
  6. Place an inch apart on baking sheet. Bake until edges are golden brown, about 12 minutes.
  7. Remove from heat, allow to cool and decorate with frosting.

*if you will be using flax-seed as alternative to egg. Add flax-seed to water and allow to sit while you prepare step 1, then stir before adding into mixture at step 2.

Our home is feeling festive and our Elf Mark has returned.




It’s a Start

I have been asked many times if I have a blog, I have thought about it quite often but now here I am sitting down to get started. One of those to-do’s that I never seem to get to. Truly because I put it off, not know what to say or how to get started. So here we go…this is my blog and I hope you will join me as I share all the things I’m crazy about from family, fitness, God, my planner, lots of crafts and a little in between.

I guess I should start at the beginning for fitness talk. My journey to a healthier me began in 2009.

When I saw a picture of myself. (picture on lower right)
I had no idea just how much weight I had put on over a few years time, until I saw that picture and didn’t recognize myself. I didn’t own a scale at the time but I went out at bought one, soon after I was at the doctors office. I tested positive for diabetes my blood pressure was high. At this time climbing the stairs in my home was difficult, it literally took my breath away. I knew I had to loose weight. I had no idea where to start or what I could do. My husband is a Marine, he told me to start with calisthenics. My knees hurt, were swollen, and I thought I was going to pass out or throw up, heck maybe both. I made my goals short term, I didn’t even want to think about how much in total I had to loose because that overwhelmed and terrified me.

My first goal was to loose 10 lbs. When I made it through my first week, I knew I had to find something else because I hated every workout, I dreaded them. I started walking from my house to my mailboxes, but I needed more and in the 100+ AZ summer heat I overheated too easily, I wasn’t in shape for it yet. I borrowed a treadmill for two weeks, but found that I truly didn’t enjoy that either and it was extremely painful on my knee. Back to searching again while still pushing through my husbands loving words during calisthenics, he would continually tell me “pain is weakness leaving the body” I wanted to duct tape his mouth every time he said it but I knew he was only trying to keep me going. I found an elliptical used and tada…had found the perfect fit for me. I loved it, looked forward to it every day. Each week I would increase resistance and was finally feeling like I was getting somewhere, like hey I can do this!


Now my food well that is a whole new level of learning. I thought I knew what healthy eating was until I took nutrition classes, Oh boy did that blow me away. I had to erase everything I thought I knew about food and start over, that was a whole new level of challenging. Like with finding a fitness routine I had to find a food routine that I could live with, because this was not a diet I was on this was a lifestyle overhaul.

Over 2 years I found what works for me, by 2011 I had lost a total of 125 lbs. but I was not done, by 2012 I reached my goal and had lost a 165 lbs total. I have kept off that weight and continued to focus on toning. This is how I became who I am today, I love running and eating healthy. I wanted to share my journey with you, it has not been an easy road but it has been worth it. I hope this brings inspiration to your journey and you will join me as we learn and live a healthy life.

Thank you for joining me,


my youngest and I