Monday, February 15, 2010

Clearing Up Your Complexion

My sister and I both struggled with acne big time in college.  Everyone knows that this affects every area of your life.  If you or your teen are struggling with this, hopefully this post will help.  Here's what I'd do....

First of all, acne, like most ailments, is never caused by the same thing for every person.  As always, I can only help as much as you are willing to help yourself.  Sometimes this means checking out your diet.  Refined foods put a stress on the body and definitely contribute to acne for many reasons, one of them being that it causes a sluggish liver.  If you have acne, I'd start by doing a liver cleanse and do them every six weeks until your face is clear.  For teens who are involved in sports or other physically demanding activities, you may not be able to do it as often, but, the more, the better.  You can find out how to do this in my recent post on cleanses: "A Clean Start." 

One nice thing about my remedies for this is that they are not expensive.  I would purchase a bunch of bentonite clay or pascalite clay from either of these sources: or  Immediately begin using it in these ways:

1.  Use as a mask 1 or 2 times a week by making a paste like this:  mix clay and pure water until a paste forms.  Cover affected areas with the paste and let dry for 30min.  Rinse thoroughly.

2.  Wash face twice daily by using the same paste, but instead of letting the paste dry, rub it on, scrubbing and rinsing.

3.  Drink it.  Mix 1 to 2 tsp. of the clay with 8-10oz. pure water and drink.  It doesn't dissolve, so you have to keep stirring as you drink.  Do this once a day until your acne clears up.  This clay acts as a sponge on the  inside and sucks up toxins from all over your body.  You MUST cure acne from the inside out.  Drink LOADS of water while you're cleansing this way. 

We all know most acne is due to hormonal surges and dips.  For this, you can dry taking black cohosh (get this in a tincture from your health food store and take according to pkg. directions).  Do this in ADDITION to the aforementioned remedies. 

This is a start and should clear up most acne.  If this doesn't help, you should take a good, hard look at your diet.  Sugar is an definite enemy to your skin (and the rest of your body)!    If you really want to attack fast and hard, you can also try taking chia seeds from like this:  mix 1/3C. chia seeds with 2C. pure water, whisk for 3min. and store in fridge for 4hrs.  Take 3-5tbsp. of this mixture after EVERY meal. 

Lastly, examine your conscience.  Seriously.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Books Read in 2010

Here's a list of books that I've read so far this year and a mini-review of them.  Lest you think I'm reading on a third grade level, we preview most of the books that our six year- old reads and I read aloud to the kids quite a bit, so I'm including those books.  I'm linking to the books on Amazon, but most of these books can be found at your local library.

The Quotidian Mysteries: Laundry, Liturgy, and Women's Work by Kathleen Norris.  If you want to appreciate the little things in life, like laundry, cleaning, and the like, this is a good book.  It also offered some insight for me into how doing daily things can ward off depression (or even just a bad day) . . . getting up, praying, cooking breakfast.  It's a short book and a fairly quick read.  

Understood Betsy by Dorothy Canfield Fisher.  Betsy lives with her overprotective aunt in the city until a situation arises that causes her to move to the country with family that she has heard of but never met.  A friend suggested this book for my eldest daughter and I finally got a copy.  It is the sweetest book and it's one of those books that you could read when you're young and then read it over and over and glean new things from it.  I loved Betsy's willingness to learn from others.  I cried three times!  And I'm not a crier over books, really.  

The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett.  A wonderful story of two cousins who find a secret garden that changes their lives.  I'd actually never read this before (I know!  The horror!).  An excellent book.  A classic.  Our library had a copy that was illustrated by Tasha Tudor and I thought it was especially sweet.

Ginger Pye by Eleanor Estes.  A story about the Pye family and their newly acquired dog, Ginger.  The kids loved this book.  I love how the author writes the book to appeal to children, yet throws a few jokes in there every now and then that only adults or older kids will chuckle at.  

Two Part Invention: the story of a Marriage by Madeleine L'Engle.  This was a wonderful book about the L'Engle's marriage, but I thought of it as a wonderful love story as well.  It was interesting to see how she and her husband loved each other and made their marriage endure over time.  I cried at the end of this one as well.  Maybe I'm am a crier over books?
The Swiss Family Robinson by Johann David Wyss.  We're still reading this one aloud.  This one, also a classic, is more entertaining for my son to listen to, although the girls have been listening almost as closely as him.  It's so fun to see what the father (and the narrator of the story) will contrive next in the book in order to make the family's life better on a deserted island.

I'll be back soon with my favorite children's books.  We LOVE books around here!  My children probably think they live in a library.  :-)