Sunday, March 1, 2015

February Monthly Favorites

February had really caused to evaluate where I shop, what I support and to be adamant in my path of wellness. That being said I really enjoy taking the time to try out/imbibe these products to truly see if they help me. I do believe in giving time for products to take effect on our health & body and seeing how we react. Also, I love getting to know and communicate with sellers, learn + study more about their methods & ingredients (please always inform yourself about anything new you will introduce in your body) Here are February's pick and happy March 1st everyone!

february monthly favorites at http://violet-woods.blogspot.com


Amitea Organics | Organic Loose Nettle Leaf  I bought this loose leaf nettle for adding it to other teas, nettle has a mild flavor, its free of allergens (unless, you have a preexisting reaction to nettle) and its good to use it over time. Nettle should be used in teas with boiling water, serving size is a cup several days a week! "Nettle’s iron content makes it a wonderful blood builder, & the presence of vitamin C aids in the iron absorption. As a hemetic (an herb rich in iron), this is an excellent herb for anemia and fatigue, especially in women" via here and heres another good read featuring nettle

Herbal Island | Raw Cacao Nibs these are 100% organic morsels from Peru. I dont think cacao nibs need much introduction. They taste like dark chocolate without the bitter aspect. Half of the week I am on the run early in the morning and I will top my granola or oatmeal with cacao for a boost of magnesium, protein & natural sweetness.

Mountain Maus Remedies Ashwagandha Root Powder another amazing find is this farm based in Washington who use sustainable & organic gardening practices to grow allergen free (there is no wheat or gluten grown in this garden, yay) herbs and botanicals. I used this ashwagandha powder for my maple Walnut Milk and have use it over the month in other milks. This is such a beautiful root that is calming and de-stressing. I love this herb. All you need is a teaspoon. You can also check out Mountain Maus here

Herbal Revolution | Love Your Lungs Organic Tea Los Angeles may not be the east coast and we may not get much winter weather but its is awfully windy and that in itself is not nice on sensitive skin or lungs. Earlier in January when the weather started getting windier, I started having issues with respiratory but instead of any tea, I want a tea blend specifically for lungs, because respiratory pains are no fun. I found Herbal Revolution, a great company run from a sustainable, pesticide free & organic garden. This tea blend features: nettles, thyme, mullein & hyssop. This tea is one of my favorites especially with a little honey. It can be taken as a supportive tea for people with a history of lung conditions or asthma but remember to take breaks (as with any botanical & herb) I should note of the Herbal Revolution handmade products are gluten/wheat free & vegan with the exception of their raw honey


Navitas Naturals | Organic Mulberries along with cacao nibs I like to top my breakfast with these sustainably obtained Turkish mulberries, they are sweet, chewy and contain a heaping amount of vitamin C, iron, & calcium. However I found I like blending and mixing ingredients. A handful of mulberries, a sprinkling of cacao & topping of chia seeds. By rotating and having variety you're putting a lobe of plant-based wellness into your body and they help each other absorb the vitamins, minerals & nutrients.

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I'll never feature a product that doesn't improve my personal health or isn't earth friendly/sustainable in someway. My own path with my health may have been an evolution within itself and it will always be a learning experience. I recognize how happy and fascinated I become when I learn about the science and alchemy of the earth and her creations.

Sunday, February 22, 2015

Ashwagandha Maple Walnut Milk (vegan + gluten free)

         I'm grateful for the many non-dairy/vegan milks we have nowadays. But at the same time some have preservatives/additives & they do not contain the same amount of other health properties you can get from other sources (i.e. some store-bought almond milks have about 1 or so grams of protein per serving yet a 1/4 of cup of almonds has 7 grams of protein.) However I will add they can be an easy way of getting fortified calcium & vitamin D, so I began to experiment with homemade nut & seed milks. If you consume a plant-based nourishment, nuts are an excellent source of omega fats, fiber, protein and sometimes iron (depending on the nut) that are necessary for our health & wellbeing. 

maple walnut milk

Ashwagandha Maple Walnut Milk a warming drink that is good for brain & hearth health. Walnuts contain omega fats & alpha linoleic acid, vitamin E and so on. Depending on what maple syrup you use (I use a Grade-A from a farmers market) it can contain about 8% iron per serving as well as polyphenols, zinc & manganese but this milk does not end there as I also added Aswangandha root powder. Ashwangandha is an adaptogen herb that calms the nervous system resisting physical & mental stressbuild tissue and support cognitive function. (*please do not use Ashwagandha Root Powder if you are pregnant/nursing, make the milk but omit the powder)

When you buy your walnuts make sure to store them in the freezer before use - the oils can go bad so preserve them well. This recipe calls for 1 cup of walnuts so this milk will have around 12 grams of protein but a serving size should be  2 or 3 cups this milk a day.
  • 5 cups filtered water
  • 1 cup walnuts, soaked in water for 4 hours and drained
  • 2 tablespoons maple syrup
  • 1/2 teaspoon of organic Ashwagandha Root powder
  • 1 tablespoon alcohol-free vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon pink sea salt
  • 1/2 tablespoon ceylon cinnamon
- Soak the walnuts in water 4 hours or so, this will make the nut easier to digest, good info: here
- Drain the walnuts, add the 5 cups of filtered water and pulse on a blender very well
- Using a nut-milk bag or a tea strainer (what I use to make my milks & juices), extract all milk
- Squeeze/Strain til you can't extract no more!
- Return the walnut milk to the blender and add the other ingredients and blend
- Serve and store remaining milk in the refrigerator, lasts for up to 4 days.

Notes//
With the remaning "pulp" you can freeze it for later use in a dehydrator, add it to baking mix (it has a lot of fiber) or even oatmeal/porrdige. Don't discard it!
Use raw honey, liquid stevia, or coconut nectar in place of maple syrup
Taste as you go, maybe you'd like more cinnamon or you can add nutmeg too.
Add more benefits by sprinkling good toppings like Living Intentions Superfood Cereal
My sources on Ashwangandha can be read more in depth here & here



Sunday, February 8, 2015

February's List Theme: Be Kind to Others

Here is February's list, Be Kind to Others. Something we should do on a daily basis, innately and unconsciously. Kindness is not about giving back to a specific group of people (or creatures), its about realizing there is a world beyond ourselves, our perceptions; ultimately our actions & interactions affect one another. But most importantly be kind to yourself first & foremost.

You don't have to do this alone, you make a project out of it, invite your friends &/or family, start a group, spread random acts of kindness and you can even share your journeys. Don't limit it to a month! Lists are to stimulate and help come up with more ideas!

Here are some links that can help you out
Learn about Operation Beautiful & Contribute
No-Kill Animal Shelter Locator
Locate a Recycling Facility 
Locate a Salvation Army in your area
Locate a Food Bank
Reach Out & Read
Locate a Public Garden near you
Million Trees LA Trees for the Future
International Ocean/Coastal Clean-Up locator


Love With Box is an organic/healthy subscription box that donates a meal to a hungry child in the USA
Learn about the Kind Campaign
Random Acts of Kindness  has great ideas & you can be a RAKtivist
Even more acts of kindness & one you can try with children


february list be kind to others at http://violet-woods.blogspot.com

Thursday, February 5, 2015

Save B.C. Wolves | Pacific Wild Alliance


February's campaign feature is Pacific Wild's valiant efforts to save British Columbia's Wolves' lives from being taken away. 

Pacific Wild Alliance a B.C. non-profit organization committed to defending wildlife and their habitat in Canada. We work with a diverse array of communities, First Nations, groups and individuals to ensure that biodiversity protection is at the forefront of land and marine use decisions. 

Why save wolves? I may not be a wildlife biologist but I firmly believe that we ought to share land with the animals we live alongside, I do not live in Canada and I may not understand what it is like to live among wild animal such wolves, caribou and the like but I don't believe it is fair to damage the ecosystem. Pacific Wild offers insight into why caribou numbers be be dwindling and it has less to do with wolves: 

"Decades of habitat destruction and human encroachment have left B.C.’s woodland caribou in serious decline. But instead of protecting critical habitat, such as lichen-rich high elevation forests, the B.C. government turned a deaf ear to scientific warnings and allowed logging, industrial exploration and other kinds of human encroachment to take place. Now that the caribou are almost gone, they’ve decided to scapegoat wolves. These highly social and intelligent animals, icons of B.C.’s natural heritage, should not be killed because of long-term government negligence in regards to habitat protection."

Please visit their INDIE GOGO campaign, they have many perks available or simply if you can, donate a bit or spread the word. Wolves are beautiful, wild creatures. They want to live as much as we do, only their animal ways are different than our own. We should find a way to respect nature and not end it. Just because it is not happening outside our own windows does not we should deny ourselves the awareness of what is happening on our precious earth. Thank you.

Saturday, January 31, 2015

January Monthly Favorites

Hi buns! Todays post is gonna be the start monthly series of products + companies I like and, not surprisingly are organic and nontoxic/sustainable. I'm also trying my best to support smaller companies who are kind to the planet. Here's January's picks:

organic products

Art of Tea | White Coconut Creme Tea For the longest time i have heard amazing things about this tea, I finally decided to see what buzz was about and yeah, its that darn good. Notes of organic white tea, safflower, cornflower and coconut somehow become a creamy (but vegan) blend of paradise, its just so good! Beyond this botanical dessert tea Art of Tea is on point when it comes to being sustainable both as a company and their products. i highly recommend checking out this page on all the great work they do.

AmiTea Organics Lemon Meringue Organic Tea | Once upon a time I had an amazing lemon tea (however was not vegan) and ever since then I have been searching for the perfect lemon tea blends. This blend is a citrus refreshment. It has Green Rooibos, the unfermented version honeybush who has its own health benefits good reads here & here  This blend contains lots of lemon: myrtle, balm & zest but its not overpowering and I add a little more than what the direction say. I'm dreaming up a recipe for this very tea involving mint & raw honey around spring.

Beeswax Tarts w/ Organic Rose Petals | While looking for beeswax candles I came across these pretty heart tarts and couldn't resist, they come in 12 count and are 100% organic beeswax and the petals are a sweet touch, the tarts can come in a variety of scents but if pure essential oils are your preference, message the seller for a list. These smell incredible and last a long time. I dig her shop because it reminds me of one of my favorite films Practical Magic (Amas Veritas y'all)

GoodLight Candles  | Well to use tarts you need candles and in my opinion unscented is best, especially if you are using a tart with oils added. These candles are extremely affordable and use sustainably cultivated non-GMO palm fruit, The company also donates proceeds to the very forests from which they obtain their resources.

Palm wax has been on the rise with is a good alternative to petroleum, however it is leading to  (good read) deforestation and the habitat if you do purchase products that contain palm wax I really recommend you make sure it was ethically obtained. Lets protect our (cause the earth is ours to defend) and here is an article on the effects of  rainforest + palm trees

Notable mention
Chemical Free Dog Toothpaste | I didn't get around to snapping a photo but for the pets I bought this great pup toothpaste. Dogs need a lot of care when it comes to their dental health. Especially since some eat food that is a little on the wet side, the moisture creates plaque and build up but some breeds eat softer food based on their dental anatomy. The older the dog gets the more care is needed on their health: their teeth & gums. However! This homesteading company (who are also beekeepers) from Pennsylvania creates this amazing dental care paste featuring clay, bee propolis, anise seed & more. I have been using this for my dog all month and thankfully her gum issues are getting better and it helps her have a fresh breath. All non-toxic, planted based and safe.

Be kind y'all!