Monday, April 30

Where is your place of tranquility?

Where do you find your calm, your solace, your inspirational space?  I am very curious about each of you... please do share in the comment section.

I have found, over the years and through many of life's trials, tribulations and celebrations... that my absolute favourite, most effective place and process for finding calmness, comfort, inspiration and to be thankful, is to get myself into the woods (often with music on my Ipod).  A few steps in and my thoughts, my breathing, my energy,
all settle into a graceful balance.

Feeling a bit overwhelmed lately, with the logistics side of Purple Essentials and life's challenging curve balls, I have been heading to the woods every chance I get... to think, to decompress, to be inspired. Inevitably, by the time that I head home, everything gently settles into perspective :)

Guess who I met in the woods?

A funny thing happened recently, I have developed an attachment to this adorable pairing of Mallard ducks.  We are calling them "The Duck Couple"... met up with this handsome Duck Couple, one morning, back in the beginning of April, near our home.

April Fools Morning

Then came across them once again 4 days later.. in the conservation area nearby.
(I am 99% certain they are the same Duck Couple)
April 5th 2012

And yet again in the woods...
April 25th 2012

April 26th 2012

They are quite friendly, and allow me to get up close and personal... always makes me smile :)

My (current)  "Out in the Woods" Play list: 

                                                                  Do What You Love - Ryan Huston
                                                                  Beautiful Day - Ryan Huston
                                                                  Anymore - The Woodlands
                                                                  Until the Day Dims - The Woodlands
                                                                  Little Talks - Of Monsters and Men
                                                                  Love Interruption - Jack White
                                                                  Let It In - Sam Roberts
                                                                  Glycerine - Bush
                                                                  Fall To Pieces - David Usher
                                                                  Home - Walk Off The Earth
                                                                  5 Oclock In The Morning - Lily Allen
                                                                  St. Lawrence River - David Usher
Live Purple!

Up next, Purple Essentials Organic Baby Wash...

Friday, April 27

End of the week...

Blossoms in full bloom - LP

Coming into the end of the week, and I want to wish you all a wonderful weekend.  Hopefully you had a productive and satisfying week... with an enjoyable weekend ahead.

Thank you for stopping by Purple Essentials' blog - new posts next week.

Live Purple!

Sunday, April 22

Happy Earth Day!

Today, the world celebrates the 42nd annual Earth Day, a global event meant to celebrate the Earth and raise awareness for environmental causes.  What will you be doing for Earth Day this year?

There are plenty of things to do on Earth Day... We, at Purple Essentials, encourage you to take a moment to celebrate our planet, the value of its rainforests and appreciate the air we breathe. Take a breath. Take a deep breath... Now thank a rainforest :)

It is important to remember that every day can be Earth Day .

This year, do something to make a change. Every effort you make to reduce your carbon footprint and limit your exposure to damaging chemicals... will add up, in big ways.

Here are 4 ways to make a difference:

Food: Eating plant-based diets is truthfully the best thing we can do to lower our impact on the environment and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

·    Grow your own food – 10 Easiest veggies to grow.
·     Buy certified organic from local farmers.

·     Preserve what is in season - How to - Preserving

·     Request local organic food where you shop or dine. - Great info - click here

Water: Drink clean water - avoid plastic bottled water - the chemicals in the plastic can leach into the water you are drinking, not to mention that the landfills get overloaded with the bottles.
•  Getting clever about water also means conserving water at home: taking shorter showers, finding and fixing leaks, washing full loads of laundry, watering your lawn less often, and installing devices and appliances such as low-flow showerheads and toilets.

•  Remember - Please don’t contaminate our water supply by flushing prescription drugs  down the toilet, using fertilizers or pesticides on your lawn, or by using toxic cleaning  products in your home. Run-off from these products contaminates groundwater and is hazardous for animals and our ecosystem.

Personal CareEvery day we use an abundance of products as part of our personal care routines and often don’t think twice about the contents of these products.  Purple Essentials create and prepare our fresh and natural, pure and simple products, in an effort to help you reduce your exposure to the toxic and harmful chemicals that abound in so many of the personal care products out there.

  • Stick to plant based and organic ingredients.  Keep in mind that the cosmetics industry is currently not required to prove an ingredient is safe for human health before it is used in a consumer product.

  • You might be surprised to hear that lipstick contains lead and that common antiperspirant and shampoos contain chemicals linked to cancer. These chemicals are toxic and we are smearing them all over our bodies unaware of the long term affects. Environmental Defence reports that over 1 700 cancer-causing, hormone-disrupting, and allergy-inducing substances have been banned or restricted in European personal care products. But, many of these same harmful substances can still be found in Canadian products, our bodies and the environment.  There's lead in your lipstick - link
  • Take a few minutes to lookup some of your everyday products… now consider what a difference you can make to your health, your families health and our environment, by switching to a natural version of that product.  Click here to search your products.

ActivityWe tend to be a “plugged-in” and gas guzzling society.  For all of the time we spend “connected” with computers, television, gaming, and in some mode of transportation, this lessens our activity level, limits our connection to each other and our environment.  It takes some thought, effort and planning to unplug from our energy habits.   It can be done :)

  • Make a list of the things you've been putting off and could be doing instead of watching TV, streaming video or using Facebook. Post it where you will see it often and choose an activity from the list each day!
  • Try an active version of “getting there”.  Walk/run when possible, ride a bike, car pool through the week.

  • Do a personal inventory of all the places you go in a given week; your workplace, school grocery store, clubs, family and friends’ homes. How many of these places can you get to by choosing a more active method like walking or cycling?

Whatever you decide to do on this Earth Day... and beyond...  Everyone will appreciate your efforts
 as we all share the Earth.

Live Purple!

Friday, April 13

Weekend Plans

Ahhhh weekend time :)  What are you doing this weekend?  After a busy product-making week, it is looking like another work-weekend around here. Website pics are being reformatted and cropped.  Copy is being written and site design is looking good.  Hoping to fit in a long hike through the woods and a latte or two.  See you back here next week.  New posts ahead.

Wishing you a wonderful weekend ~

Live Purple!

Thursday, April 12

Baby Powder - Non talc & Cornstarch free

A baby's skin is very delicate and doesn't need a lot of products applied to it - but it does need to be kept clean and dry.

If you take a look through the drug store isles, there are a multitude of baby powders out there.  Many of those powders contain TALC (talcum powder) which you may already have heard some negative information about. For the last 30 years, scientists have closely investigated talc particles and found dangerous similarities to asbestos (see a link to additional TALC information at the end of this post).
Some companies have yielded to the public outcry for more “natural products”.  Many now offer cornstarch based baby powder, which would be a wonderful contribution, as it is natural and gentle to baby’s skin.  But cornstarch is reported to actually feed yeast (they tend to thrive off of it), which can worsen a yeast/thrush infection. Anyone who has tended to a baby with a painful diaper rash, knows: you do not want to "feed the yeast"!
12$ each

A natural softening and soothing blend of arrowroot flour, with moisture absorbing Kaolin Clay and Pink Clay, along with a light, calming scent of Lavender and Tangerine, pure essential oils.

Baby powder helps to: 
- absorb excess moisture
- prevent chaffing and irritation
- prevent diaper rash.

  • Powder lightly at every diaper change, paying special attention to the creases in those cute, chubby thighs.
  • Always be careful not to create a “cloud” of powder, you don’t want your little one inhaling the fine particles, no matter how natural they are.

  • Useful with prickly heat/ heat rash.  Helps to keep skin cool and dry.
  • For Diaper Rash: Keep diaper area clean, dry, and exposed to the air as often as possible. Purple Essentials Baby Powder can also be mixed with water or plain yogurt to help relieve diaper rash and yeast infections.

Remember, babies need loads of tender love and care... but they do not need their delicate body systems to be loaded with chemicals. Purple Essentials is dedicated to helping reduce your family's exposure to chemical overload, by offering fresh & natural products for your pure and simple life :)

Interested in additional information about TALC? Click here

Coming soon - Organic Baby Wash and Baby Butter.

Live Purple!

Tuesday, April 10

49 Wonders of Baking Soda

In my quest to support a greener environment and create a pure and simple life for my family, the switch from chemical and bleach cleaners to vinegar and baking soda was made. In a time where chemicals seem to have replaced bacteria and viruses as a main threat to our health, this change was an easy and efficient way to reduce our exposure to harmful, hormone altering chemicals that commercial house-hold cleaners contain.

Next to vinegar (See previous post 49 Wonders of Vinegar), the most useful household ingredient is baking soda (AKA sodium bicarbonate).  This multitasking wonder-ingredient will make your life easier while helping to reduce your exposure to toxic chemicals.

Like vinegar, baking soda offers
three major benefits as a cleanser: 
  • non-toxic
  • multi-purpose
  • economical
(especially when purchased in bulk quantities).

1.  Squeaky clean hair - Add a teaspoon of baking soda to your usual shampoo bottle to help remove buildup from conditioners, mousses, and sprays, and to improve manageability.

2.  For in between washings - use baking soda as a dry shampoo on oily hair. Sprinkle on your hair and comb through, then fluff with a blow dryer.

3.  Chlorine remover - Rinse hair with 1/2 teaspoon baking soda in 1 Litre water to remove the dullness or discolouration caused by chlorinated pools.

4.  Combs and brushes - Hair spray and oil buildup on combs and brushes can be removed by soaking them in a sink of warm water and adding 3 tablespoons baking soda and 3 tablespoons vinegar.
5.  Make bubbling bath salts - with 2 1/2 cups baking soda, 2 cups cream of tartar, and 1/2 cup cornstarch. Mix them together, and store in a covered container. Use 1/4 cup per bath.

6.  Clean fingernails and toenails  - by scrubbing them with a nailbrush dipped in baking soda. This also softens cuticles.
7.  Refreshing mouthwash - To freshen breath, use 1 teaspoon baking soda in a 1/2 glass of water, swish the solution through your teeth, and rinse.
8.  Use baking soda to soak athletic mouth guards, retainers, or other oral appliances. Scrub dentures, mouth guards, and retainers with a toothbrush dipped in baking soda.
9.  Soak toothbrushes in a baking soda solution overnight.
10. Shaving - Men with sensitive skin may find that a solution of 1 tablespoon baking soda in 1 cup water makes a great pre-shave treatment or a soothing aftershave rinse.
11.  To make your own baking powder -  stir and sift together 2 parts of Cream of Tartar to 1 part baking soda and 1 part cornstarch.

12.  Clean your fridge and freezer with dry baking soda sprinkled on a damp cloth. Rinse with clear water.

13.  Add 1/2-cup baking soda to your washing machine load. Softens the water and deodorizes.

14.  Oil and grease - stained clothing washes out better with baking soda added to the washing water.

15.  Wash out thermos bottles and freezer bags with baking soda and water to get rid of stale smells.

16.  To remove stubborn stains from marble, formica or plastic surfaces, scour with a paste of baking soda and water.

17.  Wash glass or stainless steel coffee pots (but not aluminium) in a baking soda solution (3-tablespoons soda to 1 Litre of water).

18.  Sprinkle baking soda on barbecue grills, let sit for 15 mins, then rinse off.

19.  Sprinkle baking soda on greasy garage floor. Let stand, scrub and rinse.

20Polish silverware with dry baking soda on a damp cloth. Rub, rinse and dry.

21.  For silver pieces without raised patterns or cemented-on handles: place the silver on aluminium foil in an enamel pot. Add boiling water and 4 tablespoons baking soda. Let stand, rinse and dry.

22.  Reduce odour build-up in your dishwasher by sprinkling some baking soda on the bottom.

23.  Run your dishwasher through its cycle with baking soda in it instead of soap to give it a good cleaning.

24.  To remove burned-on food from a pan: let the pan soak in baking soda and water for 10 minutes before washing. Or scrub the pot with dry soda and a moist scouring pad.

25.  Keep your drains clean and free-flowing by putting 4 tablespoons of baking soda in them each week.  Flush the soda down with 1 cup of vinegar and a kettle full of hot water.

26.  Soak your shower curtains in water and baking soda to clean them.

27To remove strong odours from your hands, wet your hands and rub them thoroughly with baking soda, then rinse.

28Sprinkle baking soda on your wet toothbrush and brush your teeth and dentures with it. (Helps to keep them white and bright).

29.  Sprinkle baking soda in tennis shoes, socks, boots and slippers to eliminate odour.

30.  Add 1/2-cup or more of baking soda to your bath water to soften your skin.

31Putting 2-tablespoons of baking soda in your baby's bath water will help relieve diaper rash irritations.

32Apply baking soda directly to insect bites, rashes and poison ivy to relieve discomfort. Make a paste with water.

33.  Take a baking soda bath to relieve general skin irritations such as measles and chicken pox.

34.  Take 1/2-teaspoon of baking soda in one-half glass of water to relieve acid indigestion or heartburn.

35.  Used as a mouthwash, baking soda will also relieve canker sore pain.

36.  Make "Play Clay" with baking soda: combine 1 1/4 cups water, 2 cups baking soda, 1 cup cornstarch. (Food colouring or Kool-Aid can be used as colourant).

37.   If baby spits up after feeding, moisten a cloth, dip it in baking soda and dab at the area. The odour will be eliminated.

38.  Add baking soda to water to soak dried beans to make them more digestible.

39.  Remove scratches and crayon marks from vinyl floors and walls. (Scour with baking soda and hot water paste).

41.  Use baking soda to sweeten sour dishcloths.

42.  Use baking soda dry with a small brush to rub canvas shoes and handbags clean.

43.  Use to remove melted plastic bread wrapper from toaster. Dampen cloth and make a mild abrasive with baking soda.

44.  To eliminate dog odours or just freshen up the air, sprinkle baking soda on your carpet where your dog lies and vacuum up. Leave the baking soda on the carpet for half an hour. It also eliminates odours in your vacuum after it has been vacuumed up. A great way to freshen up your home air when everything is closed up.

45.  Unblock stuffy nose by adding a teaspoon of baking soda to your vaporizer.

46.  Keep cut flowers fresh longer by adding a teaspoon to the water in the vase.

47.  Make fluffier omelets by adding half a teaspoon of baking soda for every three eggs used.

48.  Put it under sinks and along basement windows to repel cockroaches and ants.

49.  Sweeten your tomatoes by sprinkling baking soda on the soil around your tomato plants.

Feel free to comment with some of your own tried and true uses for
baking soda.

Live Purple!

Friday, April 6

Easter Weekend

The gift of Easter weekend - Love it!

What will you be doing? 
Relaxing (wishful thinking?) - Sharing traditions with family and loved ones? ...

Wishing you all a wonderful Easter
and long weekend ~

New post coming soon...

Live Purple!

Thursday, April 5

New arrivals

Yay!  Some of the new Spring/Summer packaging items arrived today. (The green tissue paper looks even more lovely "in person")

Along with the tag/labels for 5 new Aromatherapy Soy Wax Candles;
    • Exotic (ylang ylang, cinnamon leaf and cedar wood)
    • Fresh  (lemongrass, may chang and sweet orange)
    • Embrace (rose geranium, ylang ylang and palma rosa)
    • Focus  (lime, may chang, basil and sage)
    • Summer Citronella  (citronella, lavender, cedar wood and clove)

They will join our "already popular" line,
  • Comfort (sweet orange, cinnamon leaf and clove)
  • Inspire  (sweet ginger grass, cardamom, sweet orange and benzoin)
  • Tranquil  (lavender and tangerine)
  • Winter Bliss  (peppermint, cinnamon leaf, pine and vanilla)

When lit, Purple Essentials candles gently diffuse their exceptional aroma, to enhance your surroundings ~ Naturally.  Each of our Soy Wax Candles contain 100% natural soy bean wax with natural cotton wicks, are scented with pure essential oils and hand poured into stylish and re-usable artisan-made glass vessels.  Burn time: approx 75 hrs +

Live Purple!

Tuesday, April 3

Magnificent Monday

What a great day!  The labels for the New Purple Essentials baby products arrived.  They look great!  Just awaiting the new packaging and a fresh batch of ingredients... then, off I will go, into the studio, to whip up skin nourishing batches of baby goodies.  Some of the sweetest babies, including a set of incredible triplets, have been our "test group" over the last few years. The Baby-Mommies have encouraged us to get the baby line out there for all to enjoy.  Very exciting!  We already have a couple of orders, pending.

The photo shoot with the fabulous Suzy Lamont, went even better than anticipated.
It was a beautiful, sunny afternoon and the temperature made it possible to take outdoor pictures without our bulky coats on.  Many creative photos were set up and captured.  Suzy really has a remarkable eye for detail and light.  We are eagerly looking forward to seeing them all.  True to form, our time together produced another memorable adventure... we decided to take some outdoor shots 1/2 way up a rock bluff by the road. (Did I mention, I was dressed in a purple cocktail dress and heels?)  Let me just say,"wow and yikes", I was very happy to get back onto solid ground when the photographer stopped snapping.  Living life for the experiences :)

* I cant say enough adulating things about Suzy Lamont!  Check out her website and see how she turns moments into art. and for more on Suzy and her journey with her camera click here.

Live Purple!

Sunday, April 1

Worth a thousand words

It is time to choose the images that will be displayed on the new website.  So, I have been working at finding just the right images, for the last few days;  Visiting various stock photo sites, filling a number of lightboxes, adding, deleting, then adding "just one more image".  My eyes have viewed 1000's of photos... they are tired eyes now, and our bank account has been reduced, but I think we have an eye-pleasing selection of images that will lend themselves well to our vision for the website.   Still, it is all so exciting!  With the launch ahead, each task checked off of the list gets us that much closer to sharing it with you.

Speaking of excitement and photos, I am looking forward to spending some time with the brilliant and talented photographer, Suzy Lamont,(Suzy Lamont Photography), on Monday.  We always have a giggling and productive time together.  Our previous photoshoot/adventure included my half-body dip into a chilly November lake, as I stepped backwards off of a dock to get out of the way for a great shot!  For this shoot, we will be capturing a number of product groupings and "action shots" (stir, whip, pour...).  Purple Essentials is looking forward to having Suzy's creative vision, woven throughout the new site.
Stay tuned, I will let you know how it goes...

Live Purple