Top 5 Reasons to Get Your Girl Outside

Alpengirl 3As you know, I’m busy sunning myself on a beach getting K-Bear outside this week! Outdoor time is incredibly important to our family, whether it be snorkeling with the fish, digging in the sand, or hiking a mountain trail. I got my start at an early age, thanks to outdoor-loving parents.

Even better than the family hikes they dragged me on was the week-long canoe camp they sent me to each summer when I was 13 and 14 (insert shout-out to Alton Jones!). It was such a young, impressionable and often-times awkward age, but I remember vividly the power of the friendships I built, the freedom I felt, and the connection to nature I established. It was a mighty feeling to canoe all day and set up camp each night, all while learning how to pee in the woods, cook a meal for a team and wash dishes with minimal water. I came home each summer feeling like I could conquer anything!

So it is with happy memories that I feature this guest post by Lauren Caselli, a guide at Alpengirl Camp, an overnight, outdoor summer adventure camp for girls ages 11-17 in Montana, Hawaii, Alaska, Washington and Norway. A Manhattan desk-jockey-turned-wilderness-junkie, she left her NYC apartment for the wide open valleys of Montana. After 22 years in the traditional education system, Lauren learned more about her passions, her values, and herself during 18 months of wilderness exploration than she ever did in the halls of her public school. An advocate of writing-as-self-discovery, she manages the Alpengirl blog. Continue reading

Happy New Year Giveaway: Upcycled Sari Bag

Sari Bag 1Happy new year, friends! As we all embark on a fresh start in 2013, I thought I’d start it off right with a giveaway! I can’t think of a better way to thank all of you for a wonderful 2012 then by offering you a chance to win one of my new favorite things!

This one-of-a-kind bag is handmade by craftspeople in India from recycled saris. The layers of silk and rayon come in a unique combination of colors and patterns, ranging from jewel tones to earth tones. The bag has an inner lining of lightweight white cotton with a large central compartment and a single side pocket. The clasp functions in two ways: there’s a button and loop fastener, and a fabric cord that can tie the bag closed for greater security.

I love this fun, colorful bag and I know you will too. And thanks to Uncommon Goods you can win one of your own! Uncommon Goods has a slew of unique and creative gift ideas for all kinds of folks. Click here for more ideas for the gals in your life! I especially love their selection of recycled items like these.

To enter, simply leave a comment telling me what your new year’s resolution is!  

For extra entries, you can also choose from any or all of the following. Be sure to leave an extra comment for each entry telling me you did so and what your corresponding Pinterest, Twitter or Facebook name is.

Details: The contest will run through 11:59 p.m. on Tuesday, January 8, 2013. The winner will receive a single Sari Bag shipped directly to them from Uncommon Goods. Due to the handmade and upcycled nature of these items, each bag will vary.
Neither I nor Uncommon Goods can guarantee all colors in photo will be incorporated into each bag.
I’ll choose one lucky person via random.org and notify him or her via email. You will have 48 hours to respond and claim your gift. If you don’t respond, I will choose another winner. Please note that although Uncommon Goods provided me a free Sari Bag, the opinions expressed here are mine alone.

I shared this post on Clever ChicksTiny Tip Tuesday, Frugal Days Sustainable Ways, Health 2day, Whole Food Wednesdays and Green Giveaways Galore

National Yoga-Recess Campaign Aims to Bring Yoga into Classrooms

Thanks to A Charmed Yogi for bringing this brilliant campaign to my attention. If you are a teacher, principal or parent of a school-aged child, I hope you will consider championing this program at your school. Free materials and assistance are available.

Yoga-Recess in Schools is a national campaign to bring yoga-based health education into classrooms. Providing free online resources like instructional videos and lesson plans will make it easy and fun for school teachers to integrate yoga into their teaching schedule. This allows children to benefit from balancing their body and mind through breathing and stretching exercises. The national campaign will peak with Yoga-Recess Day, Friday January 25, 2013 with hundreds of participating school teachers and organizations. Continue reading

Share Your Diet/Fitness Ideas and #Win a Slow Cooker!

It’s no secret that I believe living a soulicious life involves nourishing your body. Staying active and eating well should be priorities in life, no?

SlimKicker is a healthy living/fitness app that turns healthy habits into 7-30 day challenges. This level-up, points-based game puts the emphasis on learning proper nutrition, portion control and other habits that participants can stick with for the long run.

Because the SlimKicker team realizes that fun and games aren’t enough, they also provide ongoing support with personalized advice, as well as tools such as calorie counter and fitness tracker. It’s a great way for folks to interact with experts and stay motivated while developing healthier, life-long habits.

For example, users can pledge to give up soda for a month or use their slow cooker once a week. We know all about the latter as we are (or are trying to be) Slow Cooker Savvy around here, right? Which brings me to…

The Giveaway

SlimKicker reached out to me looking for fresh ideas from YOU for fun, creative fitness  and diet challenges! To enter, leave a comment below for each idea that you have. Keep it simple; one-to-two sentences only. SlimKicker will choose the winner based on their favorite entry, use it on their site and send you a brand-new Hamilton Beach Stay or Go 6-Quart Slow Cooker. Hooray! Continue reading

Don’t Miss Free Museum Day Across the U.S.: September 29

Thanks to Smithsonian Magazine’s Museum Day Live!, you can visit a number of fantastic museums for FREE on September 29. Unfortunately for those of Colorado, it also happens to fall on the day of Hike and Seek, but if the weather is a wash, you can bet we’ll trade in the trails for the brand new History Colorado Center!

To receive your free Museum Day Live! Ticket for two people, head over here and fill in your information. They’ll immediately send you an email to print a ticket for the museum of your choice. Continue reading

Applelooza!

I’m not sure what it is about this summer – the hot dry temps maybe? – but the two apple trees in my neighbor’s yard are absolutely brimming with fruit!

Traci is already one of the best neighbors ever, accompanying me on walks and to yoga class, watching out for our dogs, offering energy work, and even digging through my recycling bin one morning this week when I had a panic attack on my way to work thinking my missing keys accidentally found their way there. Seriously. I’m that nuts and she’s that awesome. 🙂

And Traci happens to be the owner of said apple trees which she says have produced more fruit this year than in the eight previous years she’s lived there. Lucky for me, she graciously opened them up for picking. I can’t ever turn down an opportunity for free, beautiful, organic fruit! Continue reading

Basil #Pesto: Quick to Make and Easy to Freeze

This time of year, my favorite crop to scoop up by the armful at farmer’s markets is fresh basil. I make a batch of pesto nearly every week, freezing it in portioned batches to enjoy all year-long. Come spring, as I use my last cube, I am sad only long enough to remember that in just a few months, the basil will be bursting forth again, beckoning me and my food processor to get whirling. Continue reading

Giveaway: Celebrate My Birthday with a Pair of Yoga Paws!

I love my Yoga Paws. Launched in 2003 by a mother/daughter team, Yoga Paws are non-slip yoga gloves worn on your hands and/or feet, a concept best described by their tagline: “The Yoga Mat You Wear.”

I came across them only recently and thought they were incredibly nifty. I contacted Yoga Paws, and Jaime, the daughter half of the Yoga Paws team, responded enthusiastically.

It’s clear that she has a passion for not only yoga and her product, but also for sharing good energy and positive thoughts. She quickly sent me a pair of Yoga Paws “Elite” in forest green, and I’ve been playing around with them ever since I got the go-ahead from my PT three months post-hip surgery.

One word: fun! Continue reading

Play it Safe with Smart911

This post is a bit off topic for me, but really what kind of life would we have if we weren’t safe? Certainly not a Soulicious Life!

Like you, I sure hope I never have to call 9-1-1, but there’s a good chance I will someday. If it’s because of a situation affecting myself or my family, I want to be prepared. My guess is that you do too.

That’s why I’m sharing this with you. I have not been contacted by Smart911 or asked to endorse anything. This is just me sharing a service I found that I think can benefit all of us. It’s a great example of the benefits of technology! Continue reading

Minimizing the Great Pacific Garbage Patch (and an Envirosax Giveaway!)

Note: Giveaway is at the end of this post.

Have you heard of the Great Pacific Garbage Patch? I first recall it hitting my ears a few years ago following a media blitz by Charles Moore of the Algalita Marine Research Foundation (thanks, Oprah!). He was the first to discover the Great Pacific Garbage Patch in the late 1990’s.

This patch is only one of many across our world’s oceans that collects pollution thanks to swirling ocean currents. According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Debris Program, the main debris type found in these patches is plastics, “likely because of the abundance of plastics and the fact that some common types of plastic float.”  Continue reading