Wellness

In The Kitchen: Adding Life to Your Groceries

485 727 Lauren Kennedy

Last week on the blog I started a new collection of talks around being In The Kitchen. I don’t know about you, but here at LSK we’ve been talking so much about how this time has changed everything for us. Things that we used to think were such a chore have now become a cherished part of our routine, and we’re finding ourselves digging into new passions like never before. One of those passions for me has been spending time in the kitchen – taking extra care in what I prepare, and all the steps along the way.

With things being the way they are recently, I’ve been thinking so much more about what I use and how I use it. This week I want to share a few tips on how to preserve those precious groceries we’re buying and make them last as long as possible in order to reduce waste and save on fewer trips to pick up groceries.

More than ever, I think I am realizing why my mom is almost mentally trained not to waste any food considering the culture during her childhood. I always had no problem tossing certain things, but now I have a greater appreciation for what I put in my straw bag at the farm shop. These times have brought more scarcity than we have experienced in our lives, and I am all about making my produce last as long as possible + for the first time have researched what veggies remain fresh for longer.

I wanted to share some tips that have really helped me. It has been such a new topic to educate myself on!

SHELF LIFE

This article and graphic have both taught me so much!

 

 

WASHING

  • Rinse with water. You can use a vegetable brush on tougher roots.
  • Veggies will hold the longest if you wait to wash them right before use.

TOOLS

  • Swag Bags: It keeps our veggies fresh for up to two weeks + they are made with the healthiest materials.
  • Almond Cow: Jase and I were having a hard time keeping almond milk in stock. It was always out at the grocery store after quarantine started, so this has been an absolute game-changer. And it only takes 5 minutes!

HERBS

  • Your herbs will be happiest standing in a glass of water, where just the stems are wet.
  • Store in the fridge or on the counter.

ROOTS

  • Store in the refrigerator in a container with some airflow.
  • Keep potatoes in a paper bag to minimize light exposure (that is what causes them to sprout!).

GREENS

  • Refrigerate in an airtight container.
  • They like a little moisture but not too much. Sometimes it helps to add a damp paper towel into the container.

TIPS

  • If you feel like you won’t use your veggies or fruit before they will get bad, freeze them! Did you know even raw butter and cheese freezes well? Cut, peel, and remove excess from your produce, and store in these biodegradable storage bags.
  • With bread that is going bad, make croutons!

Info source: @wearebrightland

Force of Nature: A Clean Alternative to Bleach

683 1024 Lauren Kennedy

If you follow me on Instagram, you have probably heard me rave about my love for this natural all-purpose cleaning product that I recently discovered. During this time of a worldwide pandemic, I think so many have been tempted to use chemicals even with knowledge of the harmful effects. Did you know that bleach and other harmful cleaning products affect our respiratory system and our immune system, which is something we need to be extra strong right now!

A sweet girl DM-ed me about a month ago telling me about Force of Nature and how much she loved this clean alternative to bleach. So I gave it a go! And oh. my. I am so giddy about it! Jase and I have been using alcohol as our disinfectant for products/mail/food deliveries, but we are trying to conserve it as much as possible, so we haven’t been using it to kill germs on the surfaces in our home. I have been deep cleaning our house once a week (OCD in full affect!) and have used FON on our wood floors and surfaces two times already – I give it a major five stars!

This solution is only 3 ingredients: salt, vinegar, and filtered water. They provide a beaker (that plugs in), a tube of the concentration. You fill the beaker with your own water and insert the solution, turn the beaker on and wait 9 minutes. It is converted to electrolyzed water when an electrical current changes the chemical composition of the solution into two new ingredients: hypochlorous acid, which is the same germ-killing substance our immune system makes, and sodium hydroxide, which gives this solution extra disinfecting power! Then you pour this into the spray bottle that they provide.

This nontoxic disinfecting solution powers through odors, grease, grime, soap scum and sticky, icky messes as effectively as bleach. The best part: it cleans virtually any surface – sealed stone, glass, stainless steel, wood, laminate, porcelain, composite, grout, tile, plastic and rubber. Other things to use it on: baby gear like strollers, highchairs, car seats, kids serve wear and utensils, sports gear, rugs and furniture, makeup brushes, backpacks, lunch boxes, thermoses, straws, sippy cups, yoga mats, reusable bags, fresh-cut flowers, patio furniture, camping gear, diaper bags, front load washers, retainer cases, toothbrushes, children’s toys, pet habitats, sponges, cars, the fridge, humidifiers, door handles, mail, and the list goes on!

Also, many people have been asking me if it has a scent. It smells like a pool (not for long), but honestly, that smell makes me feel extra productive when it comes to cleaning. It smells so fresh and I love it!

Extra Bonuses:

  • This keeps toxic chemicals from going into our water systems.
  • It reduces plastic waste from typical cleaners by 97%. It is Green Seal certified for environmental excellence.
  • The shipping boxes and Activator Capsules are 100% recyclable.

What’s not to love? DM me on Instagram or comment below to tell me how you like it! Stay safe and healthy everyone! xx

Self-Care Tip: Bath Must-Haves

683 1024 Lauren Kennedy

While there are many things about this season that have been challenging and difficult to process, I’ve been taking extra time to be grateful for the things I do have, and find light in the little activities that bring joy, rest, and make me feel whole. I think now more than ever, it’s important to find ways to take care of yourself, and to allow yourself to find peace. One of my favorite ways to practice extra self-care is by taking a bath! 

Here are a few Self-Care Tips and my Bath Must-Haves that have quickly become a part of my everyday routine: 

I often talk about this brand because I absolutely love their products! These bath soaks are made with many great (and of course, clean) ingredients including essential oils that add such a calming and soothing aspect to my bath routine! (I’ve stocked up on their bath line and love to rotate through them as a part of my bath routine).

Any time I take a bath, I’ll use this beforehand! Dry brushing has so many great benefits, but before baths, especially, it’s a great way to practice self-care by activating your body’s release of toxins before you soak. 

These bath salts are simply the best! I love this brand because the ingredients are pure and raw, and they also assist in fighting off toxic build up in the body while hydrating and nourishing my skin – a self-care must! 

This scrub is an item that takes my time for self-care to the next level. It’s made with brown sugar and hydrating sweet almond oil that not only smells amazing but also leaves my skin feeling so moisturized afterwards! 

This sponge I’ve talked about a few times before because I simply love it! Not only is it a bath must-have staple for me, but the amount of body wash it’s helped me save has been amazing. It has quickly become a self-care item I cannot do without.

I’ll use this particular bath soak on nights when I’m extra tired and need help getting rest. It’s also a great aid to your body when you feel you might be getting sick or are already under the weather! 

When I’m feeling stressed and want to relax, I make sure to use these bath salts that help calm my mind and soothe my muscles! I love the way it smells and knowing that it’s helping my body while I cut out time for self-care is such a bonus. 

However you’re feeling in this season, I hope you find time to do something that adds extra care and relaxation into your routine! x

Celebrating Earth Day + Sharing Helpful Tips

485 727 Lauren Kennedy

Happy Earth Day everyone! I have had this topic on my mind extra much lately as we have been quarantined at home. Bettering the health of the earth can feel like such a big topic, but I think the most effective way to do something good and helpful for our environment is to start by just changing one thing. Start there and I truly believe it will have such a ripple effect. I think we have all been inundated with the push back to simplicity…a slow pace. Besides the heaviness that stands behind our current circumstances, I have found this interruption in our busy lives to be nothing but refreshing. It is humbling to know we are out of control. This time has also shown me that I am more capable that I sometimes believe and has opened up new confidence and joy in activities that have slowly turned into daily burdens in the midst of our go-go-go mentality when they are meant to be a delight. I wanted to share a few things I have incorporated that have been so rewarding.

We are in the process of planting our own garden in the back yard. I know it will be such a learning experience, and I can’t wait to dive into it! Another great way to do this is to get a tower garden, which waters and sustains itself. We have done this in the past and couldn’t recommend it more! Also, another great option is going to the farmer’s market to buy produce or a local farm.

Another fun thing is growing fresh greens in your home. It requires no effort and is so fun to see them grow in no time! My mom gave me these for my birthday, and it may have been one of my favorite gifts.

Use a swag bag to keep veggies and herbs extra fresh for longer. These have been game changers for us, especially during this time!

Take these organic produce bags to the grocery store, farmer’s market, or the local farm. This helps to cut down on the use of plastic bags!

This one sounds so random, but a sea sponge has been my favorite new addition to our shower. It makes body wash last so much longer.

Use clean candles! These improve the air around you and don’t release more toxins into the air. These are a few of my favorite places to buy: Slow North, Follain, and Heaven Scent Wellness.

Make your own almond milk to save money and to lessen the use of plastic bottles. Almond Cow has been a heaven send during this time, and it only takes 5 minutes to make!

Use nontoxic cleaning products. This is my go to for everything, but I also love this! This protects your health so much and keeps the environment in your home clean.

I have listed out so many other ways, products, and practices I love in my program called The Clean Sweep.

Keep Moving at Home

683 1024 Lauren Kennedy

One of the most helpful ways to stay healthy, sane, and have mental clarity during this time is making it a priority to stay active every day, even if it’s just for ten minutes! You can change it up often so it stays exciting. Even commit to a work out every day with a friend over FaceTime to make it something to look forward to. I wanted to share my favorite work outs I have been doing from home these last few weeks + share ways that you can create your own gym in your home!

Favorite Work Outs

Everyday @laurengores posts a circuit training work out on her IG stories. They have been my favorite and only take 15 minutes.

If you want to step it up a notch, @johnpeelfitness posts a workout every day on his IG that will kick your butt and whip you into shape.

Have you ever heard of The Class? I am starting a trial for two weeks – it is so grounding and creates emotional awareness while moving your body.

The Sweat App is so fun and a challenge! It only takes 30 minutes.

Try Alo Yoga for free for 14 days!

SHOCK Women’s Fitness app is a must-try for a great at-home workout!

Items for Home Exercise + Activewear

A good nontoxic yoga mat is an essential for any exercise. An exercise ball is so good for stability and core. Ankle weights are great during any work out or even to add a little resistance on a neighborhood walk. This set has everything you could need. These bands are also great to give your legs + bum a serious burn!!

See below and scroll through our favorite activewear! Stay safe and hope you have the best work outs!

 

How to Naturally Handle Allergy Season

683 1024 Lauren Kennedy

My allergies started a bit early this year, and by early, I mean November. Yikes! I tend to associate allergies with the Spring season, but I have realized different things bloom at different times of the year, and in California, the sneezing battle can be ongoing. I know most people experience these seasonal struggles, so I wanted to give a few tips to minimize them.

It all started in my eyes. It actually got so bad that my eyes were closing by themselves. My eye doctor said they will do that instinctually to avoid the potential “danger.” So fascinating! All of that to say, I was pretty desperate! After contacting my functional medicine doctor, going to the eye doctor, and shopping at the farmer’s market, I came to a natural allergy relief cocktail that has been quite effective.

  • I take a supplement twice a day with these ingredients: vitamin C, potassium, guduchi, nettle extract, quercetin, and bicarbonate salts. This has been game changing!
  • At the farmer’s market, I met the most amazing company called Bee Golden Honeys. They make such a powerful and local bee pollen (I love the one with ayurvedic herbs infused) + their honey blends are so nutritionally rich and delicious!
  • Jase and I both take elderberry syrup daily, which offers daily allergy relief + is a must for an enhanced immune system.

What do you do to help with your allergies? And please note, I am not a doctor, but the above reliefs work really well for me, so I wanted to share 🙂 xo

 

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