Friday, June 24, 2016

Guest Post: Norwex for the Win

Y’all know I am all about sharing a good thing when I find it. Non-toxic cleaning products are VERY important to me (even more so since I’ve started having babies), so over the past couple of years I’ve been switching everything over. I have been hearing people RAVE about Norwex, and I’m part of a “homemakers” group who swear by the cloths. I feel like so many of my friends have already made the switch & I’m actually kind of behind on this one. SO, my friends Leighann and Heather came over the other day, and Heather hooked us up with all the good info & a couple of demonstrations (in my house) that totally sold me. She said if she could recommend just two products to start with it’d be the Envirocloth and the window cloth. I talked to Jonathan about it before hand and we agreed that we were going to just stock UP! I got several of the cleaning products (a few cloths, toilet cleaner, mops), some of the laundry stuff, a toothbrush, water purifier that balances PH (I’ve been in the market for this anyway), a little rag to clean our cell phones, a body cloth for when we are out and about with the boys (because let’s be honest, they get into some nasty stuff sometimes…)and a few other things. I know it will be a great investment! Jonathan and I both really love a clean, tidy house…but we also want it to be really clean. (Did you know: Vinegar based products need to sit on a surface for up to 30 minutes to kill bacteria, and bleach based products, which we avoid because of the chemicals, need to sit for at least 5 minutes. No thank you!)  I’m excited I’ve found a new solution. Cleaning companies, restaurants, businesses….I feel like they’re sorta crazy to NOT go this route.

Anyway, I asked my friend Heather to share a little of her story and knowledge with all of you in case anyone is in the market or hasn’t heard of this magic little non-toxic.

I’m, Heather Haxton, the mother of two boys whom I love to pieces and were my inspiration to start using Norwex.

When my oldest son was 10 days old we found ourselves in the Pediatric ICU. Our little guy had bacterial meningitis. After several conversations of doctors grilling us about everything we had done with our son since we came home from the hospital, they concluded it was nothing we had done. Phew! But then preceded to let me know that Meningitis can be caused by any simple E. coli that grows on any towel in less than a day, is found on most surfaces, and is easily passed around causing no harm to some and life threatening disease in others. So it could have been anything in our home!
And so started my journey to find a way to really clean but without resorting to harsh chemicals (which can bring a whole other set of problems to our health). Enter Norwex! I researched, studied, and then completed my own tests. Actually, lots of tests! It is amazing to see how the Norwex EnviroCloth can clean a surface better than many leading cleaners.
Check out the video.

You can clean more than 90% of your home, yourself, your car and office with just water and Norwex cloths! The Norwex EnviroCloth is 14% more dense then any other microfiber cloth on the market and has micro-silver chemically embedded into every fiber (this process of embedding silver is known as Norwex BacLock). Each fiber is 1/200th the size of a human hair, this is in comparison with microfiber which is typically 1/6th the size of a human hair. The small fibers mean that it can pick up particles as small as a single protein (smaller than bacteria) and the silver naturally has the property to breakdown bacteria. Bacteria is removed with water and cloth from the surface and then the silver (BacLock) within the cloth begins to break down the bacteria causing the growth and spread of it to be stopped.

You can join Danielle and try a new way to clean, leaving your surfaces free from bacteria and from chemical residue while allowing bacteria to naturally break down. All cloths are machine washable and dried in the dryer with the only stipulations to not use bleach, not use any fabric softener or dryer sheets (a topic worth researching on its own), and to preferably not be washed with linty things. Here is a link to learn more about Norwex or place an order if you’d like to check something out. You can also e-mail me with any questions at and I’d love to help.

Heather Haxton: Norwex Party

Thursday, June 16, 2016

Happy 1st Birthday, Sweet Kade!

Our sweet baby just turned ONE! That had to be the fastest year of my life so far.

Kade just LOVES life!! (And I pray he is always like that.) He is just the sweetest thing, y’all.

He's the happiest little guy- so charismatic, always smiling and making friends everywhere we go. He just exudes JOY. He came into our lives at the perfect time and in the perfect way. He has added so much love & laughter to our home this past year and we are so thankful the Lord entrusted him to us.

What a privilege it is being his Mama. Happy 1st birthday to the coolest one year old I know!

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Moms: Do Your Research. It’s Worth It.

Goodness gracious, I LOVE being Mama to these sweet boys. Motherhood is such a sweet calling. But man, it’s tough sometimes, isn’t it?


A couple weeks ago, lots of my friends were sharing a blog post about “lathering our kids up with toxic sunscreen.” (That was the title anyway…the gist of the article was that everything is toxic/harmful/will kill us eventually…and the mom was explaining that she’s sick and tired of feeling guilty and overwhelmed with all of the ways we’re “harming” our children. So, she’s throwing in the towel and lathering her kids up with the toxic sunscreen.) Moms went crazy sharing it, and at one point I caught myself nodding in agreement. I wanted to give this author a high five and tell her “I feel your pain, sistah.” It is overwhelming sometimes, isn’t it mamas? Some days we feel like we’re just doing our best to keep our little boogers alive, right? Y’all feel me?? (Yes, I know you do.)

Now I don’t want to sound all super spiritual or anything, but after I read it and saw it shared over and over on social media throughout the day, the Holy Spirit started tugging at me. And I just couldn’t shake it. And then I felt like I needed to write a blog post about it. (Trust me, I didn’t really “want to.”) On the surface, everything in that post sounded right.  Loving them IS enough, and we should be content with just “doing our best.” But it’s not right, friends. Because if we’re real & honest with ourselves, putting our heads in the sand and choosing not to research and make the wisest decisions possible concerning our little ones is not really “our best.” (And I’m convinced that’s how Satan attacks sometimes. By tricking us into believing something that sounds right, and feels right, but is actually the WIDE path.) If people took that attitude in their jobs, they’d be fired. These sweet blessings that God entrusted to me? They are my responsibility. They aren’t able to do that research for themselves, they can’t make choices and big decisions for themselves, and it is my JOB as a parent (especially as a mama) to protect them. We are the gatekeepers for our homes, and we have to guard their little hearts, minds, and bodies.

Trust me, I’m not mother of the year over here. My boys eat too much bread and not enough veggies. I struggle (uhhhh, especially in summer when the weather is so nice & it stays light out so late) to get them in bed early, even though I know earlier bedtimes are best. I’m guilty of letting Jase watch my phone to entertain him when I’m running errands or trying to get something done. And I even have a lot of help! (I know some of you who are doing this pretty much on your own. Keep fighting the good fight!) We could all list out millions of ways we feel like we’re missing the mark, so my point here is that I’m not judging or condemning in any way. I’m in the thick of it right there with ya.

I just want to be an encourager, so please hear me. Moms, you are doing a GREAT work! And that’s exactly what it is. Work. It takes WORK to raise up and train and teach and protect children. (Although, of any work I have ever done, it is hands down the sweetest, most rewarding, and most FUN! Children are truly such a blessing!) Jonathan says that all the time. Parenting takes so much constant effort. It’s way easier to be lazy than to take time to learn, to teach, to be patient, to enjoy the moment, and to research. But take heart, sweet ladies! When we feel discouraged, like what we’e doing is not good enough, or when we’re tempted to get lazy in our parenting, know this…God has a remedy! He is just waiting for us to get in the Word & find it so we can be renewed. Remember what the Bible tells us about these things, because I can’t think of anything more encouraging! Galatians 6:9 says “Do not grow weary in doing good, for at the proper time you will reap a harvest if you do not give up.” Colossians 3:23 says “Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord.”  2 Chronicles 15:7 says “But as for you, be strong and do not give up, for your hard work will be rewarded.” Proverbs 22:6 says “Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old, he will not depart from it.”

So here’s the deal, ladies. If we turned off the t.v. or hopped off social media for just 20-30 minutes each day, IMAGINE all of the things we could research/learn! And remember, I am in no way saying that to be condemning…I am saying that as a GUT CHECK to yours truly over here. (P.S. If I ever read something and I feel offended, I stop to ask myself WHY? What is the root? And could it possibly just be conviction?) Anyway, wanna know the cool part about being an avid researcher? You can share that with your other mommy friends! I love that about my friends. They are learners, and they always tell me when they come across something worth me looking into. #nerdalert Why not be into something way more productive then talking about wine or the latest Real Housewives episode? (Or whatever is cool these days.)

Here are a few things that came to my mind when I was thinking of things I research on behalf of my kiddos. If you can thing of something I missed, I would love to know so I can start checking it out so feel free to reach out. I know many of these are controversial, and every family/child is unique…which is exactly why it’s SO important for you to learn as much as you can and pray about the best decision for your children and your family.

  • Vaccines- If you haven’t already, do what it takes to watch the movie Vaxxed. I also would encourage you to read Dr. Sears’ book about vaccinations, but the movie Vaxxed changed everything for me (specifically regarding the MMR). I highly encourage at a minimum following a delayed vaccination schedule. And I will be changing some things up on this (from the way I did things with the boys) in the future after learning more about the brain barrier, the gut, nursing, etc.


  • Toxicity- There are toxins everywhere. Many of them  simply cannot be avoided these days, so we are going to control the ones that CAN be avoided. GMOs, chemicals in sunscreen, soap, cleaning products, cookware, fragrances, water bottles (BPA) etc. Yes, it is that important. We are super “granola” around here now when it comes to our cleaning products, laundry detergent, toothpaste, and anything that we put directly on our skin (lotion, baby shampoo, etc.).


  • Nutrition – Friends, this is so, so important. What you put into your kids’ body is either helping them prevent disease or causing it. (I know that sounds harsh, but it is the truth- and we are the nutritional gatekeepers of our home.) I know there are people that hear “the importance of eating organic” and immediately shut down & think that’s for hippies or rich snobs. But there is a reason there is even a fuss over organic vs. conventional- and bottom line, pesticides are extremely toxic and harmful. Try watching a few documentaries like Food, Inc. I know organic can be expensive, but there are options. Farmers markets, plant a garden, cut cable and use the extra $1200 a year to buy organic foods. We also really need to avoid food dyes, additives, and refined sugar if/when possible. Kids can still enjoy treats. I’m not talking about deprivation. I’m talking about consistently making better choices. Kids are picky eaters when mom/dad are picky eaters or allow them to be picky. The fact that Jase doesn’t eat enough vegetables right now is nobody’s fault but my own. When you have a new baby, nurse if you can. According to the experts, at least a year is ideal. Also, juice, soda, and Gatorade? Just no. Did you know we are raising the first generation of kids that aren’t going to outlive their parents because of obesity related issues? Mamas, we have to do better. We can’t just claim ignorance when we have such a wealth of information at our fingertips! We have to CHOOSE to educate ourselves and learn to eat and cook nutritious meals for our families. IF you’re too busy to do that, something needs to come off your plate of life.
  • Antibiotics- We are so quick to medicate kids when there are often natural remedies (I love chiropractic care and some other alternative medicine solutions) or it’s something that can just run its course. Antibiotics are absolutely necessary sometimes, and I’m thankful we have them for when we need them, but they are way overdone in my opinion. Know how they work? They kill bacteria. That includes GOOD bacteria that we need to fight infection. When you are pumping you kids full of antibiotics, you are destroying their gut/their immune system which ultimately leads to more sickness and more antibiotics. It definitely needs to be built back up with probiotics, but even better if it can be avoided in the first place by building up their immune system. Nurse them. Let them play in dirt. Try not to sanitize/sterilize every little thing to death. When your kiddo isn’t feeling well, is the first thing you do run them to the doctor ASAP? Or do you at least research some natural remedies? Also, we should avoid antibacterial soap and we can even make our own hand sanitizer. Little by little, antibacterial stuff is building our resistance to antibiotics which means we will need even stronger ones in the future.


  • Sleep- This is so crucial to their development! Their little brains need time to recover from all they are learning and processing. It’s actually quite amazing how much sleep they really need. A good solid 12 hours at night + naps. I always feel sad when I see a kid misbehaving and getting in trouble when it’s obvious they are just tired. Honestly, I get cranky and irritable when I don’t get enough sleep, so how do we expect littles to control their attitudes when they aren’t getting enough rest? Earlier bedtimes have been shown to be better for children. That is DEFINITELY an area I need to work on, although I do make sure they get their 12 hours and I am pretty hard core about naps unless there are extenuating circumstances. I try to remember their sleep is more important than any selfish motive I have for keeping them up. We also believe in sleep training. We do this (basically) by following an eat-wake-sleep pattern, establishing a routine, using blackout curtains and a noise machine/fan, having consistent wake times, and making sure they get FULL tummies. There are plenty of books/resources. Life is just better when everyone sleeps!
  • Supplements- Go to the Council for Responsible Nutrition's website and do your research. Basic basic, I personally believe kids need a multi, a probitoic, and an omega/DHA supplement (especially BOYS). You can talk to your doctor to come up with a time frame/regimen/plan based on your child’s needs. Kids also need vitamin D, but they need the REAL thing: sun! We can’t constantly slather sunscreen on either. Heat of the day and direct sun, yes. But I don’t personally believe it’s a constant necessity.
  • It is recommended that kids get ZERO screen time before the age of 2. As in, zero. It’s ridiculous how quickly they become addicted, and I have personally found that our own heart issues are magnified in our children. (Read: I need to put my phone down.)


  • BPA- This has been found to be highly carcinogenic & particularly harmful to the fetus when moms are carrying little boys in the womb. Avoid plastic water bottles when you can (we use stainless steel a good bit) and store your food in glass containers. Never heat food in the microwave in plastic containers. (Actually, just quit using the microwave all together if you can. I don’t even want one in our next house!) The stove works just fine to reheat food. Buy wooden/metal toys when you can.


  • Wash their clothes before they wear them. Clothes are often sprayed with flame retardents. (Also, do not put a stain resistant coating on furniture.)
  • Pregnancy- I believe women HIGHLY underestimate the effects of their choices during pregnancy on their child after they are born. This needs to be the time in your life when you take the absolute BEST care of yourself. Floss regularly. Eat healthy. Get plenty of veggies, fruits, protein, good carbs, and good fats. (If something is on the “do not eat” list…DO NOT eat it for crying out loud. Don’t listen to your friends who say “Well I ate lunch meat every day and little Johnny turned out fine!”) Stay active. Check out all the research on working our during pregnancy- it’s phenomenal & will definitely encourage you to get moving! Get plenty of rest. Stretch a lot. Take your prenatals and DHA. Avoid medication. Try not to stress. Do not drink.
  • Car seat safety- Do your due diligence and pick the best one for your budget/vehicle. This is one area I always encourage people to splurge though. Actually read the manual/watch Youtube videos for proper installation. Know how to strap them in properly. It should be snug, at their armpits/chest, and rear facing AS LONG as possible. Know when it’s time to move to the next carseat.
  • Don’t make assumptions or just blindly follow whatever you see on a blog post or just do what your mama did.  I saw something the other day about swaddling leading to SIDS. When you opened it up and read the article, it said that it’s not safe for kids to be swaddled when they are able to start rolling. Duh. But man, isn’t that title misleading? Swaddling is great before they can roll! And trust me, no disrespect to your mama. Mine is the best!! But, times have changed. Our government is not “for us” when it comes to health issues. Big companies are not “for us” either- they are all about a dollar. So we OWE it to our babies to do the research. We can’t just “do what we’ve always done” because we’re dealing with a whole new set of issues.

Mamas, if we’re too busy to research, it’s time to clear the plate and reprioritize. Or maybe it’s just making some honest evaluations of how we spend our time. Find some moms you respect and pick their brain if you’re overwhelmed and don’t know where to start. I feel like I have mommy friends who are experts in different areas, so I go to them when I have questions. We owe it to our babies, and it will be worth it. I knows it can be overwhelming and exhausting, but you were created “for such a time as this.” And of course, training them in the ways of the Lord is always the most important! That heart training, nothing trumps that. But we do have an obligation to take care of their temple until they’re mature enough to take over that aspect of their life.

All that being said, please don’t think I’m encouraging you to live in fear. I know we live in an “everything causes cancer and will kill you eventually” society. We can’t bubble wrap ourselves or our kids, and living in fear is paralyzing. I am NOT suggesting that. I am simply saying that knowledge (when applied) is power. It makes you more confident. It will serve you and your family well. The more I learn/know, the more confident I feel in my decisions. When I lack confidence, it’s usually because I have chosen the lazy route and haven’t put the work in.

I’m sure this post will rub a few folks the wrong way (although it wasn’t intended to do so). I hope you heard my heart and feel encouraged to start “studying.” Being a lifelong learner is something GREAT to model for our kids!

One of my all-time favorite roles is being a mama to these sweet boys. I am so thankful the Lord entrusted them to me and Jonathan, and I pray daily the Lord will give us wisdom in parenting. I pray he will make us more attentive, give us discernment, and strengthen us so we can finish the task at hand in training them up. I also pray I am an encourager to other moms (and future moms). And ya know, as a woman, you’re probably “mothering” someone. You were created to be a nuturer. I learn from my friends who aren’t even mamas yet, too. So, keep working!

“Children are a heritage from the Lord, and the fruit of the womb is his reward.” –Psalm 127:3

Tuesday, June 7, 2016

Fit by the 4th!

For the last 4 years, Jonathan & I have been coaching others to help them hit reset, jump start a healthier lifestyle, and break through plateaus. It has been such a blast helping people achieve their goals and it seriously never gets old. Most people have NO idea how GOOD they are designed to feel. It's amazing what great nutrition does for all aspects of your life, even for those folks who have "tried everything" or already live a pretty healthy lifestyle.

We're getting ready to kick off another round of "Fit by the 4th" challengers and we'd love for you to be part of it with us. Your health is one of the BEST investments you can make!

There are a couple of different ordering options- you can pay full retail or do the membership (which is definitely the best value & a no-brainer with the sweet new changes). I’d love to chat with you if you have questions, so feel free to shoot me an e-mail first so we can talk about the options, your goals, etc.

Can't wait for some awesome results!