Mini-Meditations: Mom’s secret to getting through the toddler years

Mini-Meditations for Moms

Back in the day, when I was a freewheeling ladypreneur who set her own rules and schedule, before the baby, and nap time schedules, and play dates…  Back when all I had to do was take care of me, and I did a damn fine job of doing it….  Wayyyy back then, I had a lovely little meditation practice.  I would wake up, put on the tea pot, and sit on my meditation cushion in front of the floor to ceiling window in our Brooklyn apartment.  I had a little altar, with all the things I thought belonged there — a big ceramic buddha head, some candles and crystals, all the good stuff.  For 15-20 minutes, I would sit and focus on my breath or listen to a guided meditation.  I felt grounded and I felt good.

But that was oh so long ago.  Now, my daily schedule is dictated by an adorable, opinionated creature with needs of her own.  She wakes up in the ungodly hours between 6 and 7am, and so begins our daily adventure. During her naps, I cram in as much relaxation and self-care as I can, while still keeping myself fed, my business afloat, and my house in (relative) order.  Needless to say, that leaves little time for my meditation practice of yore, and that hasn’t been a big deal… until now.

Best Natural Teething Remedies for Babies

Best Natural Teething Remedies

It seems like babies spend the better part of their first year teething… and then, right when you think you and your little are getting a break, the molars come in!

Being a firm believer in natural remedies, I was always slow to turn to baby Tylenol or Motrin, especially since our teething dramas went on for months at a time (and giving your little those medications for more than a few days ina row can be really damaging to their sensitive digestion, liver, and kidneys. Plus, a few studies over the last few years have shown an increased incidence of asthma and wheezing in children who received frequent dosing of acetaminophen in the first year of life (I will not that the results of these studies haven’t been completely conclusive, but even a hint of controversy is enough to give me pause).

So when at all possible, I give my little one natural remedies first, and only switch to over-the-counter medications if all else fails, never as a first line of treatment.

These 5 best natural teething remedies below are very effective and completely safe. I’ve listed them in order of efficacy, from least to greatest.  Always start with the lowest level of intervention and work your way up the list!

L.A.: Affordable Farm-Fresh Groceries, Delivered!

Affordable Farm-Fresh Groceries Delivered | The Organic Beauty Blog

As a busy mom and business owner, grocery shopping can sometimes feel like an unnecessary hassle.  Don’t get me wrong, I love our weekend family trips to stock up on pantry items and the like, but for our weekly supply of organic produce, eggs, and seafood, it’s amazing to have high quality, affordable food come straight to our door.  Yes, health food stores like Whole Foods deliver through services like Instacart, but I can’t seem to place a single order under $200 at that place.  The food is great, but is it really necessary to drop that much cash on organic food?

Thankfully the answer is no.

Recently I discovered Milk & Eggs Farm Grocery Delivery, which connects health conscious, locavore consumers directly to local farmers (kind of like a CSA), at a 50% discount.  You can set up recurring monthly subscriptions that are completely customizable, or order one-off items.

5 Toddler Bad Eating Habits to Break NOW

5 Toddler Bad Eating Habits to Break NOW

As parents, we hold the power to set our children up for a lifetime of healthy eating habits and a happy relationship with food and their bodies.  The eating habits we enforce now, from the very beginning of their relationships with food, can determine how they will eat for the rest of their lives. But sadly, in this country (and pretty much only in this country), parents are set up for failure almost from the get-go with bad eating habits that have become the cultural norm when it comes to feeding babies, toddlers, and kids.

In my holistic nutrition practice, all of my weight loss clients have one (or more) of these three bad habits in common: snacking, emotional eating, and eating on the run.  So much of the struggle with losing weight and keeping it off comes down to breaking these three bad eating habits, but when you’ve been eating that way all your life, or when you come from a household where those habits were the norm, it is much, much harder to move past them. Growing up with bad eating habits can set you up for a frustrating years long battle with weight, dieting, stress eating, body hatred, hypoglycemia, and in more extreme cases, even type 2 diabetes!

Thankfully, it’s not too late to break these bad eating habits, even if your child is no longer a toddler!  But it takes commitment, and a bit of going against the grain.  These bad habits are so deeply ingrained in our parenting culture that it can feel weird to be the one parent who’s kid isn’t attached to a cup of Goldfish or Cheerios.  But I promise you, it is so, so worth it.  You will save yourself and your child so many power struggles, tantrums, and frustrations around mealtimes. And down the road, you can feel proud that your kids have healthy eating habits and are set up for a lifetime of healthy weight, strong bodies, and efficient metabolisms.

A Bioenergetic Scan to Unlock the Mysteries of Your Health

As a holistic practitioner, I am always looking for new ways to support my clients in creating balanced health in their bodies.  I assess their bodies and health with Ayurveda, I use various personality assessments to understand more about what makes them tick (and therefore what lifestyle factors may be contributing to their imbalances), and I take into account every minute aspect of their diet, health and life to create a holistic diagnostic picture of what’s actually going on.  The one thing that has been lacking is an effective and comprehensive health test or bioenergetic scan of their bodies.

As both a practitioner, and someone who has had my own fair share of mysterious and problematic health issues in the past, I know how unreliable (and expensive!) the usual blood work and food allergy testing can be.  I was once told by my gastroenterologist that I tested allergic to pretty much everything from lactose and fructose to gluten and legumes (which was obviously insane, and had I not known better, would have surely led me down a rabbit hole of unnecessarily restrictive diets and a lifetime of frustration).  I’ve had clients come to me with tests showing inconclusive and mysterious results across the board, which their doctors immediately started treating with even more medication — always treating the symptom, never the cause.  So I was incredibly excited when I learned about bioenergetic scanning, which I’ve found to be the most comprehensive test for creating balanced health out there.

Comprehensive Testing for Balanced Health

Perfect Remedy for Thirsty, Damaged Hair

Remedy for Thirsty Damaged Hair | The Organic Beauty Blog

As soon as my formerly blond hair starting turning less-than-blond in the 5th grade, so began my lifelong affair with hair lightening.  First it was Sun In (that early-90’s peroxide spray that gave us all beachy sun-streaked hair), then at-home highlights done by my mom, and then later all those professional highlights done 2-3 times a year for the last 20 years.  Needless to say, my hair has been through a lot.  I’ve spent years searching for the perfect remedy for damaged hair that will save my fried locks.  And clearly I refuse to let my hair go natural — oh the non-blond horror!!

Over the years, I’ve developed a routine for healing thirsty, damaged hair — it’s not perfect (there’s no way to completely mitigate the damage from color-treating, especially bleaching, and especially for already dry hair types like mine), but it does turn dry, frizzy locks into more luscious, hydrated hair!

5 Step Remedy for Thirsty, Damaged Hair

Affordable Luxe Baby Care + Giveaway!

Affordable Luxe Baby Care Products


I’ve been pretty into Beautycounter and their clean, luxurious cosmetic and beauty products since they busted onto the scene a few years ago.  Committed to safe and well-sourced ingredients and science-backed formulations.  I got to try out the Beautycounter Countertime Collection and a few lovely makeup products a few months ago (check out my review), so when I heard they came out with a collection of Beautycounter Baby products, I just had to try it.

When picking products to use on my baby, I’m sure you can imagine how picky I am.  If I was skilled (and ambitious) enough to make all her products myself, I would.  But alas, I’m not quite that mom.  But I am diligent about keeping harmful, toxic ingredients (and even questionable ingredients that haven’t been shown be completely 100% safe) away from my precious girl.  I would never let  her near a drugstore brand of baby care products, which are loaded with synthetic toxins.  Thankfully, there are a few awesome natural baby care product lines out there, and I’m so happy Beautycounter has joined the ranks, lending their signature luxurious feel to an otherwise generally hippy-dippy scene.

Dealing with Mom Anxiety

Dealing With Mom Anxiety |  The Organic BeautyFor a mom like me, it’s easy to get overwhelmed by the responsibility of raising a human being. Am I playing/talking with her enough/too much? Are we spending enough/too much time at home? Do we have too many/not enough scheduled activities?

With an independent, generally low-maintenance baby like Margaux, who could easily play by herself in the living room all day if given the chance, I occasionally get hit with panic that I’m not doing enough of the right things to help her develop and grow. 

But then I remember what I learned from RIE parenting (a childcare philosophy I admire): baby’s days should be slow, calm, and predictable. They do best at home, doing their thing, with little intervention from us. 

And I breathe a sigh of relief. As long as I’m present with her, like really PRESENT, for a chunk of every day, at home in her little play space, letting her lead the way, then we’re all good. Everything else — all the outings and play dates and songs and “activities” — is all just icing on the cake. 

I love the notion that good parenting isn’t about distracting and entertaining, doing a song and dance. I love the notion that my baby is an independent being, worthy of respect and acknowledgment. I love the notion that parenting can be so much simpler, calmer, and more low-tech than the images we see on tv. 

This is my ideal vision of motherhood, and I think I’m doing just fine. 

Mamas, we’re all doing just fine. 

For more on RIE parenting, check out:

Janet Lansbury’s amazing site

This awesome Vanity Fair article on RIE

Magda Gerber’s site

Elevating Childcare: A Guide To Respectful Parenting

No Bad Kids: Toddler Discipline Without Shame

Best Natural UTI Treatment


Without getting into TOO much detail, natural UTI treatment is an area in which I have become quite the expert over the years.  UTI’s (urinary tract infections) suck, hard. And the worst part is, once you’ve had one, you are that much more likely to get them chronically.  Unfortunately, chronic UTI’s aren’t just an inconvenience — they are one of the leading causes of over-prescription of antibiotics in women, and overuse of antibiotics can lead to even greater health problems: antibiotic resistance, digestive disorders, and candida, just to name a few. I myself was once hospitalized with a severe case of colitis after using antibiotics on and off for several months, upon my doctor’s urging.

After years of needing to take antibiotics several times a year for UTI’s, and even more years dealing with the long-term effects of overuse of antibiotics, I said enough is enough.  I developed a protocol of natural treatment for UTI’s that works, and 98% of the time, eliminate the need for antibiotics.  This is big news for those of you out there who are prone to this not-so-fun affliction.  I’ve also perfected a strategy for preventing UTI’s to begin with, and am happy to say that I haven’t needed to take antibiotics for a UTI in several years!

Take your vitamins, and save the rainforest!

Nature's Way x Rainforest Alliance on The Organic Beauty Blog

As you may have picked up on by reading this blog, I am a huge fan of supplements.  In my own body and those of my clients, I have seen targeted supplementation lead to hormonal balance and a return of fertility, better skin and hair, a calmer mind and slimmer waistline, better sleep and more energy, and an overall greater feeling of vibrancy and well-being. I’ve seen enough empirical evidence to call “hogwash!” on all so-called experts that try to debunk the efficacy of dietary supplementation.  The fact remains, the right supplements can drastically transform your health! (Click here to read more on how and why)

So when a great supplement company like Nature’s Way ups the ante by donating 1% of all sales from this summer, up to $100,000, to the Rainforest Alliance, I had to spread the word.  Through August 31st, any purchase you make of Nature’s Way supplements, which you can find at most pharmacies and health food stores nationwide, will support a wonderful nonprofit that has been around for over 30 years, which works to conserve our planet’s forests and natural resources, and promote a vision of global sustainability.  Pretty sweet, right?

I’ve used several Nature’s Way supplements over the years, and love that they are high quality and affordable, which in this health food world of $40 bottles of multivitamins, says a lot.  They make it so easy to take your vitamins, and save the rainforest to boot!

Here are my top 5 favorite Nature’s Way supplements that have helped to transform my health and body: