Posts belonging to Category Health & Wellness



Your Internal Color Compass

Isolated coloured pencilsWe all have our favorite colors.

The ones we’re drawn to instinctively in the way we dress and what we surround ourselves with in our homes.

Me, I like blue, especially a faded blue, one that leans toward blue-grey. Other days I might be more in the mood for yellow.

Speaking of moods, who among us hasn’t had ‘one of those days’, the kind where you look in your closet and nothing suits your dark mood but black.

So you dress yourself in black, head to toe, and head out the door.

That’s a good example of your Internal Color Compass dictating what you should wear, based on your mood.

Of course, this internal compass can serve you just as well when you’re feeling sunny and upbeat, and it can also help determine the color palette in your home.

The following four Color Palettes were shared at a recent Sherwin Williams Color Forecast presentation.

If you’ve never thought beyond your favorite color and considered your Internal Color Compass, this might be fun for you to play with.

I’m sure you’ll recognize yourself in one of them.

 

Restless Nomad

You’ve only to think of all the journeys you’ve taken, imaginary and otherwise, to recognize your inner nomad.

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Are Your Kids Missing School?

Allergy ConceptDid you know that asthma in children is on the rise, resulting in a lot of missed school days?

(According to the latest statistics, more than 25 million people are affected.)

That’s a lot!

The likely culprit might surprise you even more – toxins in the environment.

Yes, you read that correctly.

The rise in asthma has been specifically correlated to a group of chemicals commonly referred to as VOC’s. (That stands for Volatile Organic Compounds).

Even the word volatile sounds scary, doesn’t it?

You might be wondering what that even means.

Well, you know how, when food has gone bad, it typically has a rather awful smell?

Think of VOC’s in the environment as being the household equivalent to rotten food.

So, just as you wouldn’t eat food that has obviously seen better days (gluten-free, or not) you really don’t want to surround yourself with chemicals that poison the air you breathe.

In fact, we now know that indoor air pollution can actually be 50% worse than outdoor air.

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ARE YOUR KIDS MISSING SCHOOL?

Did you know that asthma is on the rise?

According to the latest statistics, more than 25 million people are affected!

Of even greater concern, is that asthma in children is on the increase, resulting in a lot of missed school days.

The culprit?

VOC’s – chemicals found in many household items, and what you should NOT be breathing.

VOC’s stands for Volatile Organic Compounds. Even the word volatile sounds a bit scary, doesn’t it?

You know how, when food has gone bad, it typically has a rather awful smell?

Well, think of VOC’s as being the household equivalent to rotten food.

Just as you wouldn’t eat food that has obviously seen better days – you really don’t want to surround yourself with toxins that poison your environment and the air you breathe, do you?

That is why we need to pay particular attention to our children’s sleep environment.

While statistics show that at least 57% of today’s children are sleep deprived, what we’re talking about here goes beyond just making sure they are getting enough sleep!

Let’s say your children are, in fact, sleep deprived.

If you add toxins and food allergies to the mix, they are at an even greater disadvantage.

So how do you ensure adequate sleep, aside from sending them to bed at an appropriate time?

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HOW TO ACHIEVE ‘PEACE OF MIND’

According to a recent study “the state of your home has a direct impact on your Relationships, your Self-Esteem & your overall Happiness”.

 

I thought I’d take a moment to explain the inspiration behind Designer-in-a-Box – specifically the three packages that I offer.

Let’s begin then, with the very first tier, the one I call Peace of Mind.

Why that particular name? Where did it come from?

Well, perhaps this describes you…

Is your home filled with furniture you bought years ago (in college, maybe?), or with things that someone else chose?

Maybe even leftover from a previous relationship?

So, here’s the thing.

If your home no longer reflects who you are, it’s like dragging a heavy weight around with you every day.

(Remember that study? Your happiness depends on this!)

Now, change the picture.

Visualize yourself coming into a home that truly supports your health and well-being and reflects the essence of who you are.

That is what I call Peace of Mind.

And, as I’ve mentioned, Peace of Mind also happens to be the name of the intro package I’ve created for my ultimate DIY interior design program– DESIGNER IN A BOX.

Of course, these words could mean something else entirely.

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INTRODUCING: DESIGNER IN A BOX!

Are you ready to create the home of your dreams?  

Well, what if I told you there is now a fabulous on-line tool that can help you do just that?

I’m thrilled to announce my brand new Interior Design program – DESIGNER IN A BOX – the Ultimate DIY Course for designing your own home!

A little over a year ago, I came up with the idea to introduce an Interior Design program in the form of an on-line tutorial.

“Wouldn’t it be great,” I thought, “To have an on-line tool that helps you design the home of your dreams?”

The creative wheels have been turning ever since.

It’s moments like these that remind me why I created this program in the first place. 

It’s because I truly believe everyone deserves to have a beautiful home!

Not only that, I believe access to professional interior design advice should be readily available and affordable to anyone.

In order to do this, I realized I would be sharing a lot of information that includes not just the A,B,C’s of interior design but also insider tips, worksheets and plenty of personal advice.

I specifically tailored this Home Study Course towards anyone who is a little more “hands on”, preferring to handle much of the design work yourself while having access to professional advice along the way.

My intention with this program is just that – to help you create a beautiful home that supports and nourishes you in every aspect of your life.

So, how do you know if Designer in a Box is right for you?

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IS YOUR HOME TOXIC?

A few months ago, an acquaintance of mine mentioned that her two-year old grandson had been quite sick over the past few months.

The poor little guy had been in and out of our local Children’s Hospital, subjected to one test after another.

After all that, there was still no clear diagnosis.                             

However, doctors were beginning to question whether the real culprit might be the new carpet recently installed in the family’s home.

It’s hard to believe, isn’t it?

I was shocked when I heard this, but I wasn’t surprised.

The truth is, fumes from fresh paint, new furniture, new carpet and fabrics, and that new car smell – those fumes are what’s referred to as “off-gassing” and it’s all highly toxic.

The toxicity comes from the VOC’s, or Volatile Organic Compounds, that are present in any of these products.

You might be wondering, is it even possible to avoid them?

Well, you’ll be happy to know there is a way, and you can do that by considering healthier alternatives such as zero VOC Paints, organic fabrics and water based finishes.

You can read all about this and more in my new guide “LIVING GREEN”  – available either as a downloadable file, or a printed booklet that will be shipped to your front door.

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DO YOU PAY THE TOLL?

On December 29, 2011, Seattleites found themselves with a new Toll Bridge.

While the bridge itself wasn’t new, the toll was.

For those not familiar with the Seattle area, we have two bridges that span Lake Washington – connecting the city, itself, with the suburbs and outlying areas.

I think it’s safe to say that hundreds of thousands of commuters rely on these bridges every single day.

So, enacting a toll was a really big deal.

Here’s what has happened since. Many commuters have simply refused to pay the toll. Instead, they are driving well out of their way and finding alternate routes.

They either travel across the second bridge – whether or not it is convenient to where they live or work – or they circumnavigate the lake completely.

What surprises me most about this, is that the folks who have chosen to drive around the lake or find alternate routes, don’t seem to be concerned about the extra distances they’re driving, or the additional expense for gas.

Meanwhile, for those who opt to pay the toll, the route into the City is straight sailing all the way – a huge improvement over snarled traffic jams that used to be the norm.

Of course, whether to pay the toll or not, that’s up to the individual and their unique circumstances.

In the end it’s all about choices.

The analogy here, is that we often make similar decisions when it comes to buying new furniture – whether to go all out and invest in superior quality and a better experience – the equivalent of paying the toll – or settling on something more affordable that fits our budget here and now.

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A TEMPLE FOR YOUR BODY

“They are architects of furniture who designed comfortable, livable pieces that define space in a dynamic way….They built temples for your body.”

David Jameson, Architect                                         

 

The above quote was in reference to Hans Wegner and Poul Kjaerholm, two remarkable furniture designers of the early twentieth century.

Think about it.

Imagine having a “temple for your body”.

I don’t know about you, but I think that sounds heavenly.

As I write this, I’m on a quest. I’m looking for comfortable furniture, specifically a perfect chair – one that will envelope my body and fit me like a glove.

I dream of a chair that will allow me to sit comfortably for hours on end, without having to constantly re-position my posterior for greater comfort.

Or squirm in my seat to keep from sliding off, because my feet don’t quite touch the floor.

Being ‘height challenged’ – seating of any kind is usually too deep. (Plus most countertops and upper cabinets are too high, but I digress).

In a typical day, we put our bodies through a lot of stress, from physical exercise, hours sitting at a computer, poor posture in general, and – oh,yes – carrying around excess weight.

Any one of these places extra stress on our muscles and joints.

It’s no wonder, then, that at the end of the day our tired, sore bodies are craving a comfortable place to rest.

A temple, so to speak.

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WHAT IS YOUR COMFORT ZONE?

As any well-seasoned traveler can attest, navigating airports these days is often a challenge. We may encounter any number of inconveniences from long wait times to erupting volcanoes.

Have you ever noticed, while traveling, what your level of comfort might be at any given point during your trip?

In fact, depending on your hotel accommodations, or your in-flight experience, you may actually be more aware of a lack of Comfort, than anything else.

Of course, on an airplane, being seated in First Class is the way to go if you’re looking for comfort and some in-flight pampering.

Yet, for those of us sitting in Coach, it is often a very different experience.

On a recent flight, I found myself seated next to a mother and her young baby. The woman had not booked a seat for her child, and was hoping I might not show up.

The baby was perfectly happy until she had to give up her seat and be held firmly on her mothers’ lap. At that point, she let out a blood-curdling scream of protest.

Comfortable I was not.

The baby clearly needed a seat of her own, and I needed some peace and quiet. Much to my relief, the stewardess ushered me to a new seat in one of the exit rows.

I now had plenty of leg-room, the baby had a seat several rows behind me and well out of earshot, and all was well with the world.

I was very comfortable.

On any given day, our comforts levels are frequently tested, and for each of us, that definition is unique.

And when it comes to our homes – well, there is almost no end to the number of ways consumers can pamper themselves with what seems comfortable to them.

Whether selecting furniture, linens, paint colors, fabrics or household appliances – and that’s just naming a few – you will be faced with many decisions.

However, before you choose, why not step back and ask yourself the following very important question.

What does Comfort mean to you?

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5 WAYS TO SHIFT THE ENERGY IN YOUR OFFICE

A recent article on creating Harmony in ones’ work place, has inspired today’s musings.

If you’ve ever considered how you might improve the energy in your workspace – whether or not your office is in your home – these simple design suggestions will give you something to think about.

By no means are these ideas limited to just your office – you can apply this to any place in your home.

 

Do Aim for Clean, Uncluttered Surfaces

We don’t always realize how important it is to have our work areas impeccably organized, with a designated place for everything to be stored.

The tendency is to have little piles on our desk, each one representing a portion of our To Do list for the next day.

Do you really tackle each of those little piles on a daily basis?

I know I don’t.

And yet, I’m fearful of storing things away, being very guilty of an “out of sight, out of mind” mentality.

Here’s the thing, though:  according to Chinese Feng Shui, having too many things on your work surface can impede the flow of energy, or chi.

There is a lot of truth in this ancient wisdom, so take heed.

Clear up your work surfaces, and find a home for all your knickknacks and unnecessary items.

Even better, be sure to extend the effort to every area of your home that tends to collect stuff – be it your kitchen, your favorite coffee table with stacks of magazines and clippings, or a bathroom counter.

Make it a habit to breathe new life into your living and work spaces, each and every day.

 

Don’t Turn Your Back on the Door

From a purely logical standpoint, it simply feels more comfortable to have a clear view of your office door, so you can see what is going on.

This one simple act can eliminate the sense of someone sneaking up on you from behind.

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