Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Even If You Don't Know Me....Can We Just Pretend For a Moment That We're Friends?

Everytime I start to write this post something stops me dead in my tracks and I don't know what it is exactly or that talking about things like this can be a bit, errrrrr, awkward for me sometimes.  I'm a closet introvert.  Talking to new people, and sometimes people I know, is a HARD thing for me.  Which I'm sure some of you find to be a strange confession because Cassie and E always used to tell me that I was the one who made the friends for our group of friends.

But anyways, I don't want what I am about to write overshadow what I know about Young Living Essential Oils, and that is that they are legit, people!  If you are educated AND consistent in your use of these products, they will work for you.    

So, even if you don't know me.....can we just pretend for a moment that we're friends?  Can we pretend that you know my heart???  That you've heard my testimony.  That I wouldn't just try to sell you some crap just to sell you some crap that doesn't work.  These oils....they are changing our lives.

I have to be upfront with you and tell you that Young Living is a multi-level marketing company.  If you didn't know that, you do now.  It was truly the one thing that made me a bit uneasy when that amazing nurse gave me that cotton ball soaked in peppermint oil.   I love me some Jamberry.  I love supporting the single Mama's out there who work those second jobs on the side in MLM to pay for extra curricular activities, etc  But here's the thing...YL products, are genuinely so awesome that I'm not trying to sell you something just to sell you something....I'm simply sharing my love for a product that has changed my life.  And maybe it's a road that you've never thought to travel for yourself and your healthy.  Let me tell this, in the world of health, this one isn't often traveled, but as I've's so worth it.

What I've learned is that unlike most MLM companies, YL distributors are simply out to share the love because EO's are simply the bomb.  To put it simply...they will rock your face off.  They work.  They help with aches, pains, allergies, health, wellness, and pretty much everything in between.  To put it simply....You name it....There's an oil for that!

I don't think many of us honestly join the oily world thinking about the business side of these amazing products....we just want to use our oils and go about our marry little ways.  But then we use the oils.  And we fall IN LOVE.  And then one day it happens, you can't help but tell every single person you know because, well, they are just that awesome.  And then you see a friend post about their allergies or their child's rash and reach out to them, because....THERE'S AN OIL FOR THAT!  Then your husband may tell you that you have an obsession, but who is he to talk?  I mean, he asks you to put your 'voodoo oils' on him every time he sees you putting them on yourself or one of the kids...because folks, they truly work and even he knows it.

So you start sharing about them on your social media and one day it happens...a friend or family member seeks you out because they have to try these oils that they keep seeing you praise.  They, too, want to find a healthier alternative to OTC medicines, cleaners, and other products that contain insane chemicals.  So you add a couple products to your ER order for them, and once they see for themselves...they are ready to jump on board.  They want their Premium Starter Kit, because how on earth could you possibly pass up such a great deal?  11 oils, a diffuser, plus so much more to get your health on track for the cost of a cell phone bill!!!

Long story short, these oils sell themselves.  And it is SO very rewarding to work with a product you use and believe so strongly in because you get to see lives transformed.  For the better.  

The best part?  There's absolutely no catch!!!

You're not going to feel good temporarily at the expense of another problem popping up down the road.  (As a cancer survivor, I know this all too well!)  You aren't going to be take an Advil or Tylenol everyday for headaches and find out 10 years down the road that it caused damage to your liver.

These oils....they are 100% pure, natural, therapeutic grade oils.   And the health benefits you get from them are unbelievable.  I really have no idea why I held off on getting started using them myself but I can honestly say that it was a God thing that lead me to them.

So what are the benefits to becoming a wholesale member even if you don't want to be a 'Life Dropper'?  Wholesale members save 24% on ALL the products they purchase.  There is no monthly membership and there is absolutely no commitment to sell anything, though that option is there if you would chose.  It's like a BJ's or Sam's membership for OILS!  You only have to place ONE $50 order per year to keep your membership active, but unlike with BJ's or Sam's you actually get $50 worth of product and not just the membership.  How awesome is that?!

There are two kit options:  One is with the regular Home or Dew Drop Diffuser.  And the second with the Aroma Diffuser is $10 more but the diffuser is a bit more sleek (if you like that look) and it covers a little more square footage.

We also have an amazing ER program that I like to call our Frequent Buyers Club where you can actually earn points for FREE oils.  AMAZING!!!

So what do you say....are you ready to take control of your health?  Are you ready to say good-bye to toxic chemicals that could be harming you and your family?

If you are interested in learning more and or getting started with Life Drops:  You can find me here.

*If you have previously been talking to another distributor about YL and want to sign up, please contact them.

***Disclaimer:  I am not a medical professional.  All opinions and experiences talked about in this post are my own.***

Sunday, February 01, 2015

What On Earth Are These Oils All About???

My name is Casondra and I'm addicted to oils.

Lots and lots of oils.

I use them for EVERYTHING!!!

It wasn't always this way.  For a year or so, I just watched a few of my friends rave about them repeatedly on their social media sites, and quite frankly, I really thought they were insane.  How could some essential oils make anyone feel better than medicine a doctor gave them?  I mean, sure, I'd used them in our humidifier to 'scent' the air, but wasn't that really all they were good for?!  A  couple months ago I got really sick.  I mean really, REALLY sick.  A sweet, sweet nurse introduced me to Young Living Essential Oils.  Peppermint, in particular, to help with a migraine that no amount of meds the doctors were giving me were even touching.  She put it on a cotton ball to diffuse it in my room and within minutes I was starting to feel some relief.  So much so that when Bill accidentally threw it away, I asked him to go find her so she could give me another one.

After doing some research, and realizing all the things that each oil in the Everyday Oil kit is good for, I told Bill that I'd really like the Premium Starter Kit as a Christmas Gift.  

And so the story goes....he bought me this amazing kit with all these beautiful bottles of oily goodness that I am now addicted to.

I've been getting the questions a lot here lately, 'What on earth are these oils all about?  What do you use them for?'  So I thought it easiest to just do a mini run-down of each oil that comes in the PSK (Premium Starter Kit).  But to answer the question of what do I use them for.... I use them for practically EVERYTHING!

I make beauty products, cleaning products, allergy products, mood lifting oils aka PMS oil for my oldest diva, sleep oil, bath bombs and salts.

I would seriously love to write about all my favorites but it would take you 2 hours to read so I'll stick with the products in the PSK because they are all so great.  I honestly don't know how Young Living narrowed it down to these 10 plus the bonus oil (Citrus Fresh).

So without further ado....

1.  THIEVES.   I'm not sure I could live without this oil.  If I had to give up all other oils and could only keep one, it would be this one.  This oil is known for it's anti-bacterial, anti-viral, and anti-infectious properties.    It was created based off research about a group of 15th century thieves who rubbed oils on themselves to avoid contracting the plague while they robbed the bodies of the dead and dying.  Once caught, they were forced to disclose the formula of herbs, spices and oils they used to protect themselves in exchange for a more lenient punishment.  

I often diffuse this oil after the girls get home from school to pull air-borne microorganisms out of the air that they have brought home from school, and I have them rub it on their feet prior to going to school.  I am convinced it is what has got us through flu season this year with none of us having caught the flu.  *knock on wood*  I HIGHLY recommend this gem of an oil for everyone.

2.  MELALEUCA ALTERNIFOLIA  (aka TEA TREE OIL).  This oil is antibacterial, antifungal, antiviral.....and the biggest thing it's know for ANTIPARASITIC.  That's right....this is the oil you want in your arsenal if your child comes home with the dreaded head lice paper from school.  Enough said on that before we all start itching.

3.  LAVENDER.  Let me just start off by saying that when I first got my kit, I was NOT a fan of Lavender.  I've never been a fan of lavender scented lotions or candles or bath products, and I was so disappointed to find out that A LOT of the recipes I wanted to try called for Lavender.  I just plugged my nose because the benefits to this oil are AMAZING and guess what...the grew on me.  I just put in an order for a big bottle of it because I use it THAT much.  This oil is so versatile.  It's the oil that if you are questioning what oil you should use for something, Lavender is probably the answer.   It helps with respiratory infections, high blood pressure, menstrual problems/PMS, acne, eczema, psoriasis, scarring, stretch marks, burns, cuts, insomnia, nervous tension.  I can not say enough good about this oil.  Everyone needs this oil.  EVERYONE!

4. PANAWAY.  This one is great for aches and pains.  I use this one on Bill's back when his sciatica is acting up.  I had another friend use it on her shoulder when it was aching and it got rid of her pain.  I also use it in a mix I created for a friend of mine for her migraines and she said that they get rid of them every time.  I like to mix a few drops of this in with some Epsom Salt and pour into my bath to ease my muscles.

5.  PEPPERMINT.  This is another really versatile oil.  First thing in the morning, I put a drop of Peppermint in my hands, cup them over my nose and take a few deep breaths in.  INSTANT ENERGY!!!  Peppermint is also good for upset tummies, fevers, inflammation, indigestion, curbing appetite, congestion, removing ticks, bad breath, and arthritis...just to name a few. This is one that will always, ALWAYS be in my stash as well.  

6.  STRESS AWAY.  This is just like it sounds....a little bottle of stress away....that smells like key lime pie to me.  It's made up of Copaiba, Lime, Cedarwood, Vanilla, Ocotea, and Lavender.  Ava had to have a couple MRI's today and her entire body had to go in the tube.  Needless to say, she was NERVOUS.  So, I rubbed this on the back of her neck and on her wrist before she went in and she handled it like a champ.  This is another one I like to add to bath time.

7.  LEMON.  Lemon is SO good in water.  Now I know what you're thinking....can't I just add a slice of an actual lemon to my glass of water?  I could but lemon oil comes from the rind so the constituents are's actually better for you.  Lemon oil is known for being antitumoral, antiseptic, an immune stimulant, helps improve memory (yes, it's a great oil to diffuse while your little ones are doing their homework!), and relaxation (I rub this one on Bre at night before bed).

8.  FRANKINCENSE.  This is one of the oldest Essential Oils.  Do you remember hearing about this blessed little oil in church? When one of the wise men gave it to baby Jesus as a gift along with Myrrh and Gold?   Frankincense is amazing for skin which is why you will find it in almost every skin care recipe there is on Pinterest.  It's also considered the 'holy anointing oil' in the Middle East.   It has antitumoral, antidepressant, and anti-inflammatory properties.

9.  PURIFICATION.  Purification is an oil I use on a daily basis because I add it to every load of laundry I do.  It disinfects and neutralizes mildew and disagreeable odors.  If you burn something on the stove or in the oven....diffuse a few drops of purification and within minutes, the smell is gone.  If your garage disposable is starting to smell a little yucky...a drop of this will get rid of it.  But that's not all it does.  Purification will also disinfect and clean cut, scrapes and bites from spiders, bees, and wasps.  This is another oil the I will never be without.  

10.  JOY.  This oil is one that girls and I like to wear in our diffuser necklaces with a drop of lemon or orange or we rub it over our hearts when we need to be 'lifted up'.  It's an energetic blend of oils that lifts your spirit and mind.  Ahem....PMS oil for the oldest diva.

So there you have it.

Now, I need to tell you that the PSK also comes with several other goodies.

Some samples packets of Ningxia Red which is our Antioxidant Drink and it is delicious.  10 samples of Lemon, Lavender, Peace & Calming, Thieves, and Peppermint to share with your friends and family and a 5 mL bottle of Citrus Fresh which may just be my FAVORITE oil of all.  Because I love, love, LOVE all things citrus and it smells heavenly when you diffuse it.

If you are interested in checking out any of these oils you can do so over at  

Anyone who signs up for the PSK and mentions this blog post will get a FREE orange oil, 3 roller bottles, and a copy of my Chemical Free Home.

Wednesday, October 01, 2014

Fake or Just Truly Grateful?

Yesterday, a friend posted this article:

And I have to say that the more times I re-read it, the more I'm convinced that the person who wrote this article quite possibly has never shared the kind of love and happiness that they want to 'brag' about.

Last year I had a good friend send me this message:  I love how much what you have is like what we have. It makes me feel a sense of reality and community. For a long time I had a lot of people almost making me ashamed of our happiness....but seeing someone else who so openly rejoices in the blessings GOD has bestowed....Well, you and me are friends in a way so few are. I can't wait to keep reading the rest of your story and I love that I know for a fact you are reading mine!

Let me tell you, the friend who wrote this...she REJOICES in the love she has been blessed with because she knows what it's like to be in a toxic, unhealthy relationship and now having a partner who accepts and loves her unconditionally is one of the most treasured gifts in her life.  Truthfully, she could post 50 times a day about her love for her husband and it would bring a smile to my face to read each one because I know them, and I know they are, in fact, that happy and in love with each other.

Now, that's not to say that I haven't seen the flip side of this...the couple who talks about how in love they are, have friends who are envious but behind closed doors their relationship is anything but happiness.

 I know plenty of couples in middle.  Ones that occasionally post about their significant other (a significant song, happening or poem) and I think that those people are really feeling that way at that particular time.

And I know PLENTY of people that don't hold anything back when it comes to bashing someone else or bitching about everything that's wrong in their life...and I don't for one second believe that their lives or the people that are in them are usually THAT bad.  Speaking from experience, when you live with someone who isn't kind to you, you DON'T talk about it because 1.  you are embarrassed and/or 2.  you refuse to paint yourself as a victim.

Regardless of circumstance, we live in a technology focused world and parts of our lives are always going to be 'out there' and people are always going to scrutinize and make assumptions and judgments, and most of them will actually have nothing to do with the person they are judging.  More often than not, they are judging a reflection of an aspect of themselves that they aren't proud of or something that they are envious of.

If I've learned anything about relationships...

if Bill and I have both learned anything....

it's that love is an intentional act.

And depending on your partners love language, some of that intent may be affirmation.

Does that mean that the words a person says aren't always 'real life' or they are being boastful?  Absolutely NOT.

Let's face it.... marriage/long term relationships, on some level, are hard.  You are with this person that you are going to have differences with and you can choose to confront them together with grace or you can let them turn you bitter and destroy what you have.

I wrote a few days ago about how Bill and I had only spent about a total of 30 days together, in person, before we got married, and we didn't live together beforehand.

After each of us having two failed, long-term relationships (his far surpassed mine because by time his divorce finalized in July 2011, he had been married for nearly 15 years.  I was only married a mere 4 and a half years by the time mine finalized) we both knew what we were looking for in a life partner.  We knew compatibility and happiness far outweighed most anything else.  I knew I needed to be in a relationship where security meant there was no judgment except to help each other be the best versions of ourselves that we can be.  It's important to be able to trust that your spouse isn't going to hold your shortcomings against you.  It's important to have someone who is not only not going to tear you down but builds you up.  You can't live with constant negativity and continue to stay happy.  It was important to both of us to find a partner that felt the same.  And it was very important to both of us that we could one day say to the girls, 'The best part of the beginning of marriage is the excitement and newness of finally living together.  It's worth the wait.  Even if that means you have a VERY short dating period."

Our marriage is our top priority and it continues to thrive because we are both intentional in our actions and words to each other.  We know what makes the other one feel loved and what doesn't and sometimes we 'intentionally' go against our own personal feelings that day to make sure the other one is reminded of their importance.  

I am so incredibly thankful for that for that gift.  

I am so incredibly thankful for him.

For the man he is today.

For  the blessing of our marriage.

And for our life together.  

Because it's made me a better person.

And when I write about it on any form of social media, it really isn't for anyone else but him.

I want him to always know that I don't take this blessing - our life and love for each other - for granted.  And if words of affirmation make his heart filled with even more love then I'm for dang sure going to say them to him.

Because when love becomes intentional it's real and it will continue to grow. 

And I truly, truly believe that that could ultimately be the 'real' why behind why other's share their happiness sometimes.

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

7!!! Where Has the Time Gone?

Baby Girl, it seems like just yesterday that Mama Evan and I went down to the NICU to see you for the first time.

And that we sat and sobbed and sobbed as Mommy got to hold you for the very first time.

Stabilizing your breathing tube was a big deal so I was only allowed to hold you for short periods of time, twice a day.  E was the second person to ever hold you.

Not long after we got to Riley's you got your first haircut for your PICC line and Sam tied it up in a little bow and made me a scrapbook page.  It's one of my most cherished keepsakes.

You were so, so tiny but so strong.  Even before surgery, you started over-breathing your ventilator so they were able to extubate you for a couple days.

As long as I live I will never forget the beauty of this picture.  It was so hard for so many people to look at because you had been through so much in your first two weeks of life, but it was one of the most beautiful sights I had ever seen because you fought, baby girl, and you survived.

All the nurses were coming in to see you because you were just a mere 2.04 kg the day of surgery and they were amazed at the miracle they were witnessing.

The day Papaw, Aunt Dawnetta and I brought you home, 3 shorts weeks after the picture above, you were 4 lbs and 15 oz.

You literally looked like a baby doll in your car seat. 

By the time you were six months old, your therapists and home health care nurses released you from their care because you surpassed the odds and were doing everything that a normal 6 month old does. 

By your first birthday, you were up to 11 pounds.

You were walking and wearing 3-6 month clothes because you were still so tiny.

We've had a couple set backs along the way though.

At 17 months, we found out that you had sleep apnea as a result of some of the medicine you were on before your first surgery, so you had your second surgery.

And a couple months later, you got RSV and had to spend a few days in the hospital.

Two was a fun year...

We went to Alabama to visit Aunt Becky and Uncle Billy.

And we spent a lot of time at the lake.

We had a family only birthday for birthday #3 because I had just got home from the hospital, but you still had fun.

We made up for it with birthday # 4.  

Everything was Minnie Mouse that year.

And really anything to do with 'aminals'.

You started preschool.

And then decided to cut a HUGE chunk out of the side of your hair so you rocked a pixie cut for awhile.

Five was a big year for you.  We moved.  You meet Poppy. You graduated pre-school.  We got married.  And moved again.

We spent your 6th birthday at the beach with Lele, Papaw Jim and Grandma Lola.

You spent a lot of your Saturdays going to car shows with Poppy and even won an award of your own. 

You got to meet the Lady Cats.

Decided you want to be a Veterinarian when you grow up.

Had lots of snuggle time with your babies.

Play-dates with your bestie.

You brought the country to the city.

Visited your cousins.

Filled our hearts with so much joy.

And kept us in fits of laughter.

Today, you turned 7.

And I am sitting here with tears streaming down my face looking through all these old pictures and wondering where the time has gone.

We love you so very much, Bre!

And we are so proud of the beautiful spitfire (or as you told us last night, the 'crazy girl') that you are.


I'm looking forward to all the adventures this year holds for you.