Lavender and Sage Exfoliating Scrub

So, summer skin is super, extra real. It's not even summer technically yet, but I'm already super extra burnt all over my shoulders. By far the most beneficial think for my skin besides mineral sunscreen, has been coconut oil. For most of the year coconut oil is too heavy for my skin, but as it were I'm spending all day in the hot sun, and it's really been quite the salve for me, on my tired, and usually pale skin. I usually put it on before going out and also after sun, but I also need a scrub to exfoliate, encourage circulation, and remove dead skin cells. 

Lavender is known for its calming benefits, and there's some research to show that sage has anti-inflammatory properties, which can only be a good thing for an inflamed sunburn. 

Here's what you'll need:

2 Tablespoons of coconut oil

1 Tablespoon of olive oil

2 Tablespoons of dried sage

1 Tablespoon of lavender flowers

2 cups of Himalayan salt

Directions:

Mix together all ingredients 

Apply to damp skin and rub in a circular motion. Its safe on your face, but avoid your eyes. 

Rinse well and moisturize afterward

Red Cabbage Slaw with Lime Cashew Dressing (Vegan)

I started a new job yesterday as a river rafting photographer. Honestly, sometimes I surprise myself with the jobs I pick up. Aside from the fact that it's just really nice to spend afternoons on the river, I really am getting a lot out of it. I have a lot of time to read, for one, while waiting for the boats to come through. Secondly, people are really happy to get to share their experience. You know it's hard to get a picture when you're in the middle of Class IV rapid and that's what I'm there for, so you can show everyone you did it. I did it, and it's definitely not easy. If you knew anything about my athleticism, you'd know it's severely lacking. Anyway, I spend most of my time in what I like to call yin mode, which is less about action and more about becoming more sensory. Touching things, putting things together how you want them, having all the feelings that kind of thing. It's good for me here and again to be more out there than in here. It makes me appreciate the 'in here' more.

I love this messy salty little salad. It's got a few of my go-tos in the veggie department being bell peppers and cucumbers, both of which I could basically eat all day. Red cabbage is another one of my favorites, although I don't eat it nearly as often. This salad comes out crunch, tangy, and the dressing is smooth and has a creamy texture due in large part to the cashew butter. 

Ingredients: 

For the salad:

1 cucumber - shredded with a potato peeler

1 carrot - shredded with a potato peeler

1 yellow bell pepper - sliced thin with a mandolin slicer

1/4 head of red cabbage - shredded, I used a cheese grater

1/4 cup of cilantro 

1/4 cup of green onions - chopped in small pieces 

For the dressing:

2 tablespoons of cashew butter

Juice from one lime or about 2 tablespoons 

1 tablespoon coconut oil

1 tablespoon olive oil 

salt and pepper to taste 

pinch of cayenne 

2 teaspoons of sesame seeds 

Directions: 

1. Mix all of your salad ingredients well. If you don't have a mandolin slicer at home you can slice the bell pepper very thin by hand. 

2. Blend all dressing ingredients well, except for the sesame seeds. 

3. Add sesame seed to dressing and mix in to the rest of the salad. 

4. Optional: Garnish with extra sesame seeds and cilantro

5. Mix all ingredients well, and store in the fridge for up to 2 days. 

Yellow Garden

This content is sponsored by Monrovia, all opinions, and experiences are my own. Thanks for supporting TFS. 

Every time I'm on Pinterest (which is always) all I think is how I want plants everywhere in my house. I, my friends, also have commitment issues. So when it comes to outdoor gardening the wisest choice I could make for the time being was container gardening. I got the chance to work with Monrovia again for their #ColorDoesIt campaign and for some reason in the past week or so, I've been really interested in yellow. I'm generally more of a green and earth tones kind of person, but yellow has got my attention right now. 

The three plants I picked are all flowering plants, one is that Asiatic Lily, its the bright yellow one that you can't miss. The tall one is called a Mango Popsicle, which will bloom yellow in summer and fall. The leafy tree type one will someday grow to be 15-20' and is called Yellow Lady Banks Rose, which has little clusters of yellow roses that I can't wait to share as decoration in other posts. 

So, really building this little garden was pretty simple, all I did was repot some of the plants with soil I got from Lowe's the first time I went to pick out my plants. I took so long on the first post picking out plants that I decided to break it up into two trips. Either way works, but shopping was definitely easier once I knew what I wanted. You can also check out the website to see what you're interested in. From there your only job really is deciding what goes together and of course where everything will go, which is easy because they're totally portable when they're in containers like this. 

Hopefully you can draw some low commitment inspiration from this post and make sure to plan ahead if you're the kind (like me) that can never quite decide. 

Extra Thick Mango Ginger Smoothie (Vegan)

I went white water rafting the other day. I can barely believe it, because I can be a little bit chicken, and more often than not a homebody. So, having a big adventure was definitely an unexpected out of the norm that I needed. It was a lot more fun than the intense terror that I had anticipated. If my friend hadn't invited me exactly the night before, I probably would have had too much time to spin my wheels and back out, but as it turned out it was perfect.

While an adventure is just what I needed, I'm still a sucker for my homebody style full of smoothies, and homemade soups. I'm still eating hot soup and baking well into spring, no shame here. 

These spices might be more reminiscent of the cooler months, but this smoothie is sweet, smooth and super thick, drop it in the freezer for a few minutes and you'll have more of a frosty type situation which is also super worth it. 

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Here's what you'll need:

Makes 3 Servings

10 oz of frozen mango chunks

1 - 13 oz can of full fat coconut milk

1 teaspoon cinnamon 

1/2 teaspoon nutmeg

1 teaspoon of grated ginger

4 pitted dates

1 cup ice

Directions:

Blend all ingredients well

Serve immediately or place in the freezer for 10 mins for a thicker consistency 

Agave Oatmeal Moisturizing Face Mask

This mask might look a little more like breakfast than a face mask. Funny thing, it tastes a little like breakfast, too. It only has two ingredients, agave nectar and oatmeal. Oatmeal is one of my favorite skin care concoctions, it's moisturizing, calming, most people have it on hand, and its oil free, which is important to people who have dry skin that is also prone to acne. So, like most of my homemade beauty products, there's one isolated key ingredient in a food that makes its efficacy measurable. (I've been watching a little too much Bill Nye Saves the World.) That ingredient in oatmeal is, beta-glucan

"Beta-glucan has the unique properties of being able to form a fine film on your skin as well as being able to penetrate deep into the skin. Thus it provides a protective layer while also providing much needed deep moisturizing to your skin. It also enhances wound healing and shallow abrasions, and naturally stimulates collagen deposition and activation of immune cells within the skin." Poppy Soap, Co. Blog 

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All of this to say, oatmeal is good for your skin, can encourage healing, and much like natural oils leaves a protective barrier on skin, making it less sensitive to environmental factors. 

Agave nectar's benefits are similar to those of honey being that it is a humectant, which means it seals in moisture, and has light exfoliating properties. This means, that it helps skin retain moisture while also helping to remove dead skin cells, without scrubbing. If you don't have any agave nectar on hand, you can always sub honey. 

Ingredients:

  • 2 Tablespoons of oat flour or pulse a little bit of oatmeal in the blender 
  • 2 Tablespoons of Agave Nectar

Directions:

  • Mix both ingredients together.
  • Apply generously to clean skin with fingertips to face and neck. 
  • Leave on for 20-30 minutes, rinse with water and scrub gently for added exfoliating benefits.