Beauty, Female, Health, Soap

Shelby’s Handmade Soap

Good morning lovelies. A couple months ago, I decided I was going to try to perfect my own handmade soap. When I was around 23 years old, I had done a bit of research on making handmade soap at home and had purchased some products. I had made 1 or 2 batches that didn’t turn out the way I had expected, and then that was the end of that. Something sparked my interest back in December 2019, and I wanted to try again! My mind then began to wander a bit, and here I am planning on potentially selling soaps at Farmer’s Markets, to friends and family, and on Etsy and Amazon Handmade! I do realize that It’s going to take some time for me to really master my soap making skills. I need to be realistic here. I’m probably not going to make a whole lot of money within the first couple years of doing this, but there’s no shame in listing my products and seeing what happens 🙂 You can see my listed soap at https://www.etsy.com/ca/shop/ShelbysHandmadeSoap, or https://www.amazon.ca/handmade/Shelbys-Handmade-Soap .

So far I have made Charcoal Soap which turned out wonderfully. Charcoal Soap can be used as body soap or as a Facial Cleanser. It can treat oily, acne-prone skin and help to reduce pore size as well. It also prevents premature aging, and helps tighten and firm the skin.

I also created a Soap where I had added a swirl to it, with 3 natural colorants. I called this my “Earthy Swirl Soap”. This soap is colored with Charcoal powder(black), Zinc Oxide (white), and Indigo powder (mossy green). The beige color is the uncolored soap portion.

Handmade Soap takes 4-6 weeks to cure. I currently have 3 more batches sitting in my apartment that are curing! Once these are done, I will list them as well. I am currently waiting for my Zesty Lemon Hemp Body Bar, Mango Butter Rose Clay Soap, and Citrus Swirl Soap all to finish curing!

You can purchase my handmade soap here… https://www.etsy.com/ca/shop/ShelbysHandmadeSoap or https://www.amazon.ca/handmade/Shelbys-Handmade-Soap

Any support or advice is much appreciated! 🙂

Health, Keto Diet, Lifestyle

Keto Diet for beginners

So you’re interested in doing the Keto Diet? I personally love this diet for quick weight loss, therefore, I wanted to share some of my own advice. I know some people see it as more of a lifestyle than a diet. On the other hand, some do not believe that it is healthy whatsoever and aren’t interested in trying it, and that’s fine too! I personally LOVE this diet 1-2 months at a time. I’m speaking for myself here, as there are many different ways to do the Keto diet. BUT I have found that once your body goes into Ketosis, the fat just melts right off – or so it seems! I’m simply creating this post for those who are interested in the popular Keto Diet and would like to read some quick tips and tricks before starting. If you already follow a specific eating trend and are happy with it, that’s great too!

So what is the Keto Diet?

The Keto or Ketogenic Diet is when the food you consume is low in carbohydrates, moderate in protein and high in fat. When your carb intake is less than 50 g a day, your body will eventually go into “Ketosis”. Ketosis is when your body is burning ketones for energy rather than glucose, OR, you can say that your body is using fat for energy rather than carbs.

Personally, I aim for 20g Net Carbs at day or lower. Some people like to do 30-50g Net carbs. The lower amount of Net Carbs, the quicker you’ll get into Ketosis. What are Net Carbs? Total Carbohydrates – Fiber – Sugar Alcohol (if any) = Net Carbs.

Image result for net carbs calc

It is very easy to spend lots of money (if you’re not careful) once you start this diet, but it definitely does not HAVE to be expensive. I learned the hard way, unfortunately. There are so many products on the market currently labeled as “Keto” with high prices. Some are great, and some are not. One my personal favourites is the “Unbun” https://unbunfoods.com/. I use these for cheeseburgers or breakfast sandwiches and they’re delicious, but they’re about $10.00 for 4 buns, and for that price I can definitely say that they are not a necessity.

What do some Keto meals look like?

  • Oven roasted Chicken breast and cooked broccoli with cheese – I like to add Hot Sauce to my chicken for flavour
  • Green Salad with chicken breast: Spinach, Lettuce, Onion, Cherry tomatoes, Goat Cheese, chicken breast, salad dressing (see below)
  • Salad Dressing: Olive Oil, Apple Cider Vinegar, lemon/lime juice, salt, pepper – all mixed together in a bowl
  • Spicy Chicken Wings: Fresh mini chicken wings seasoned with Lemon pepper, salt & pepper baked for an hour in the oven. When almost done, I dip each wing in hot sauce and bake for another 10-15 min.
  • Taco Salad: Ground beef, cheese, low carb salsa (Tostito brand), 14% Sour cream, Avocado
  • Cheeseburgers: burger patty, cheese, onion, pickles, mustard, low carb mayo (Hellman’s Organic) – all wrapped in lettuce OR use a Keto Bun
  • Chicken Fajitas – made as a salad rather than in a tortilla wrap
  • Steak with Cauliflower Mash: I put the cauliflower in my food processor, and then fry it on the frying pan with butter, salt & pepper
  • Keto Chicken Soup – Like chicken noodle soap, just no noodles 🙂 I also add bean sprouts, ginger, Curry Paste, & fish sauce to give it a “Pho” Soup kind of taste. Delicious!

These are just a few of my favorite meals that I enjoy cooking throughout the week. I try to spice it up sometimes and get new ideas from Pinterest 🙂

What is the Keto Flu?

The Keto Flu was VERY REAL for me, especially when I first started this diet and had never done it before. The Keto Flu is basically a collection of symptoms associated with your body adapting to your new low-carb way of eating. It can last anywhere from 3-5 days. Mine lasted the whole 5 days, and it wasn’t fun. I stuck through it though, and afterwards I felt great. It’s not a real flu, but it feels like it. Symptoms can look like nausea, fatigue, lack of motivation, headaches, irritability, dizziness, sugar cravings and brain fog. Once these feelings are gone, your energy levels go way up and your cravings go way down, because you are probably burning Ketones 🙂

Keto Diet Essentials – Here are a few items that I personally must have if I’m doing the Keto Diet 🙂

  • Heavy/Whipping Cream (0 Carbs)
  • MCT Powder (Nutiva brand, Vanilla Flavored) – This is great for sweetening coffee and tea
  • Unsweetened Vanilla Almond Milk
  • Pickles (Mostly for the Pickle Juice) – On Keto, your electrolytes can become low if you’re not careful. This can cause exhaustion, weakness, dizziness, muscle cramps, moodiness and irritability and other symptoms. When I start feeling like this, I take a couple shots of pickle juice. Sometimes I’ll just take a shot before I start my day in the morning just to make sure my sodium levels are up. Magnesium, Sodium, & Potassium are all important when it comes to balancing your electrolytes.
  • Liquid Stevia
  • Swerve Sugar Replacement (Great for things like Fat Bombs, Broccoli Salad, and lots of other yummy recipes)
  • Almond Flour
  • Cheese
  • Avocados!!! – These are high in healthy fat. Exactly what you want on the Keto Diet. They are also loaded with fiber and potassium.
  • Olive Oil
  • Magnesium Capsules – Magnesium has many health benefits, but it also helps to keep your bowel movements regular. When you first start the Keto Diet, your body is adjusting to a completely different way of eating. Constipation can unfortunately become a thing, especially if you aren’t eating enough fiber. Magnesium capsules can really help for this, just don’t take too many!
  • Collagen Vitamins
  • Sugar Free Chocolate Chips – I love these for when I just can’t kick my sweet tooth.
  • Keto Urine Strips – These were so helpful for me, especially within the first 2 weeks of the diet. People have reported that after a while, they become not so accurate, but I find they are great for the beginning!

I hope this post is somewhat helpful to those who have any interest in the Ketogenic Diet! I’m not a professional at all, I just wanted to share some advice for those who have any interest in this wonderful diet. I hope you all have a wonderful day!

Spirituality

Love yourself

Taking care of your own mind and body can feel strenuous sometimes, especially when we are so caught up in the whirlwind of life. We spend a great deal of time focusing on the future or dwelling on the past, that we don’t actually see or feel what is happening to us right now. We’re all so busy… but it really is okay to slow it down just a little. Take care of your body. Be grateful for everyone in your life. Set positive intentions every morning. Choose to let go. Look yourself in the mirror and say “I love you.”

Do you remember growing up and learning to love yourself? Or learning how important it is to work on forgiving yourself? I honestly do not. I personally feel that if we have a healthy mind and body from putting ourselves first sometimes, we have so much more to give to our loved ones.

It’s okay to say “no” sometimes. It’s okay to not allow negative energy in. It’s okay to take a moment and breath. You are worthy.

life, Spirituality

What Spirituality means to me

Spirituality. This fascinating topic has consumed me over the last two weeks. To me, it’s the desire to understand everything; how everything is connected in a certain way. Looking at life as the big picture. Spirituality to me means being interested in so much more than materialistic items.

Spirituality is having the desire to meditate and really look deep into your soul to understand. Meditating brings you to certain places almost like it was a memory. It’s like you have been there before, but not really. After meditating, you feel an overwhelming wave of emotion. Like pure happiness, yet you want to sob. Feeling incredibly sad and happy at the exact same time. How is this even possible?

Your loved ones vent to you about certain things, and of course you are there for them, but you can’t help to think, “but why does it matter?”. You recognize negative energy and hold up your shield. Nope. Not letting this miserable human affect me today.

You no longer want to consume alcohol, because it is doing nothing but altering your level of awareness. Your consciousness feels cloudy after a couple drinks. After I had 1 glass of wine the other night, I decided I did not like the feeling. I just want to understand everything and I feel like being tipsy will cause blockages.

Spirituality is loving yourself unconditionally. Our physical body is simply something that our soul is using for this time being. So take care of it. Do not poison the physical body. Eat well. Avoid consuming harmful chemicals. Be kind to yourself.

career, happiness, job, Lifestyle

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas to you all! I hope Christmas morning brings you joy and warmth.

This morning I woke up around 7 am in my apartment, with my boyfriend sound asleep. I had a shower to start my day, made a tea, and did 15 minutes of morning stretches and yoga. The last few days I have hibernated inside, on my couch, doing absolutely nothing but reading. Actually, yesterday I went out and purchased a Himalayan Salt Lamp from a local shop named “Chakra Wellness”. I instantly fell in love with this little store. Not only do they sell items like Healing Crystals and gems, Sage, Salt lamps, Spiritual Home decor, incense, Keto Diet & Organic pantry items, BUT they also offer guided meditation practices. So neat.

I am currently on day 5, out of my 12 day Christmas Break. I have been meditating and reading every day. My goal over the holidays was to do some major soul searching, take care of my mind and physical body, and essentially take the first few steps onto a spiritual path.

Being away from the fast paced, viscous 9-5 work week has felt so refreshing, yet stimulating for my mind. It does bring me sadness though, because I know I am so extremely lucky to have the ability to take a 12 day holiday break. Majority of people in the world only get a few days off from work – if that. This then brings me to another thought. I have such a strong desire to venture away from living an average persons way of life. I have been brainstorming every day of certain career changes. Can I make homemade soap for a living? I’ve made it before and I loved doing it. Should I look into making my own homemade wine? How can I start an online business? What about a Reiki Practitioner, or a massage therapist? My brain is constantly going. And then I meditate and feel a little more at peace with my thoughts.

I despise the thought of going to work everyday and putting on an image that feels 100% totally synthetic to me. Trading time for money. Working for someone else’s dream. Maybe to some people, this is.. just what life is. “It pays the bills.” Blah. Gross. I can’t live like that.

Anyway, I am totally rambling this morning. Merry Christmas to you all! Smile big, eat a ton, and give lots of hugs and kisses!

happiness, Health, Mental Health

Highly Sensitive People

Over the last couple months, I’ve found myself to really be struggling with self esteem issues. A co-worker or a customer would say something somewhat condescending to me, and I would think about it for days. A statement that certain people could brush off their shoulders would eat me up inside. I then think to myself, “Why are people so mean? What’s wrong with me? Why am I so damn sensitive?” And then I end up hating myself for allowing things to hurt me so easily.

Not only are my feelings hurt so easily, but I find myself to be very sensitive to basically everything else. I react to movies quite dramatically. A happy movie? I cry from happiness. I remember when I watched the Sexy & the City movie, I was sobbing at the end when Carrie and Big fixed their relationship and they were just oh so happy. I refuse to watch any movie that has anything to do with pets, because we all know how those end. I despise any type of confrontation, whether I’m involved in it or not. The type of music I listen to can drastically affect my mood for the day. I actually used to enjoy going to Music Festivals and raves because of the amount of enjoyment I received from the roaring music speakers and booming bass. I could really feel the music. I felt that I was the music – but the only way I managed to stand the large crowds of sloppy, drugged up people was if I was quite intoxicated myself. The thought of going to an event like this NOW, truly scares the crap out of me.

I had decided I wanted to do some research in regards to my sensitivity levels. I purchased a book on Amazon called, “The Highly Sensitive: How to stop emotional overload, relieve anxiety, and eliminate negative energy” written by Judy Dyer.

This is a paragraph from the introduction. After reading that, tears streamed down my cheek. I’ve always felt like a bit of an outsider. Kind of different from others. After reading this book, I learned that only 15-20% of people are considered Highly Sensitive. The smallest things can create extreme levels of happiness for sensitive people. Yes, this can also feel like a not-so-good thing as well, because this also makes the unhappy times feel completely unbearable. In a way, I’ve kind of started to appreciate my sensitivity levels. I cannot imagine not having the ability to feel so much. Almost living a plain, flat life. You’re just…. level. No extreme ups. No extreme downs. I think I’m going to embrace my life as an emotional roller coaster.

career, happiness, job, office

Toxic People

I am truly struggling with dealing with negative, toxic people in my life. I hate leaving work in a bad mood because I am forced to listen to constant negativity. It is absolutely draining. I have been trying to meditate every day after work to help myself feel better. It does help most of the time, but last night was quite difficult for me. I was having a really hard time with trying to slow my racing thoughts down. The majority of this negative energy isn’t directed towards me, but i’m always there listening to it. If it is directed towards me, holy smokes – I have a very hard time with letting it go.

I’ve been trying to picture myself with a shield that protects myself from any of these toxic vibes. Sometimes it’s extremely difficult though. I despise coming home in a bad mood for no reason other than the miserable people at work. How do you deal with negative people in your life?