Friday, August 30, 2013


Hey there! I´d like to a few a minutes to share a new and very exciting discovery of the last 2 weeks...CHIA seeds (did you guess from the title?!) First I´ll talk a bit about what chia is all about, then onto 3 chia recipe ideas.

What´s chia?

Maybe you've heard of this little guys before, since they're in the health food hype these days. They´ve actually been around since Mayan/Aztec/Incan times and were used to sustain energy. [Read more here or watch a video here] The other day, I found them at a local market and decided I should try them out. Until I researched them a bit, I had no ideal of their potential benefits. Well, let me tell you, it´s super good stuff!

Chia seeds have
   <> more calcium than a glass of milk
   <> more Omega-3s than almon
   <> more antioxidants than blueberries
Chia seeds are also
   <> gluten/grain-free
   <> energy-giving
   <> are able to keep you full 

Chia Recipes

Another plus is that chia is very versatile. This is partially because it´s consistency changes into a type of gel when it´s mixed in liquid. I've experiemented with a few different ways to use it this week. 

#1 Chia as an Egg Substitut

Apparently, you use chia instead of an egg in some recipes. I tried this in a carrot bread and also a quiche. In the quiche, I also used part real eggs and part chia (or ´chia eggs´ as I like to call them). To make make 1 chia egg = 3 spoons water + 1 spoon chia.

#2 Chia as a drink: Chia Fresca

After reading up, I learned this drink is hugely popular in Mexico. It´s refreshing and gives an energy boost, plus it´s got a fun texture! My husband loves limeade, so this healthy variation was an instant hit. It would also be great with coconut water! [Idea from Oh She Glows]
¨Chia egg¨ + 1.5 cups of water + spoonful of lime/lemon juice 

scoop of ice + sweetener to taste = Chia Fresca

I definitely recommend trying this mild, refreshing, and super easy recipe!

#3 Chia as a Mustache

Ok, ok so it´s not a recipe but this was priceless so I had to share! My husband had just drinken the Chia Fresca in this picture :)

I hope you have fun in your chia adventures and I´ve got some more recipes coming this way. Until then, chia later!

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Wednesday, August 28, 2013

DIY: Up-cycled Plastic Bags

Goodday sunshine! Today is already great because I'm stoked to share my second DIY vlog. [If you missed the first one, you can see here

I first did this project with a friend who found the wonderful idea. And I think it´s great and so simple, so I wanted to share. To up-cycle a bunch of plastic bags into a new creation...

Here´s what you´ll need:
  •  scissors
  • iron
  • 2-4 plastic bags (different colors, too!)
  • string or things for decorating
  • wax paper is best (or white paper, like I used)

What do you think? Any questions or comments, I´d love to see those comments! 
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Tuesday, August 27, 2013

And my wishes for the week...

Here we are for Weekly Wishes again! Thanks to the lovely Melyssa for hosting this community building link-up of wonderful ladies. I´m meeting tons of new bloggers and am so grateful for this :)

Here were my goals from last week and my progress...
1. Continue with previous goal #3  still working on meeting new people :)
2. Wash pile of laundry all clean and handwashed!
3. Look into more work options  it turns out I´m getting more hours with my job.
4. 20 minute quality time  Quality time has been good - we´ve been hanging out more time. It turns out it´s easier when I´m down my computer haha...positives and negatives to everything!
5. Publish new DIY video - complete video, publish (tomorrow´s the day!)

This week´s goal I want to relax a little bit and lay off the list. Sometimes simple is good and I need to remind myself that from time to time. I tend to try to take on lots of tasks, so this week´s goal is to simplify and focus. Something in particular I aim to focus on is being happy by smiling and making conversation with those around me. Good luck ladies with your week and live happy!


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Tuesday Tunes #4

Hey there lovelies, I hope everyone is off to a great week! Maybe a little Tuesday Tune to start your day? I have a lovely woman (and her band) in mind for today...

I first saw Alison Harris and the Barn Owls in the North Bay, where I lived for several years during/post college. My girlfriend and I went to a cafe that has live musical shows. And I immediately fell in love with her voice and their sound. It´s so true and shows a natural beauty in the music. 

Also, while I was finding this video I found out that she is doing a harmonious collaboration with 3 women. They´re called Bootleg Honeys. Gorgeous. Find them on Facebook. And if you like them, they´re stationed in Northern California. 

What do you think? What style of music do you like?

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Saturday, August 24, 2013

Expat to Expat Q+A: Life on the Daily

Hey all, hope your weekend is off to a good start! Once again, I'm glad to hop on this Expat to Expat link-up train with Belinda and Bailie. This month's theme is about daily life in your country abroad...If you're just tuning in, I'm currently living in Lima, Peru. Thanks for stopping by! 
1. What is your favorite food store in your city and why?  
We've been getting the large majority of our food from the local market, called Surquillo.  I love it because I can bargain a little bit and everything is very fresh and not as imported from other places. Although I just went to the supermarket today and found out prices are slightly cheaper -  really!?! So maybe I'll be shopping there for somethings too...And I just found out about a weekly farmers market for special products which I may splurge for, like fresh milk, yogurt, honey. I'm excited to check it out tomorrow!
2. For your answer to number 1 is it ok to buy the store brand items or do you pay extra for a name brand?
I usually just opt for the cheapest. Except for juice which is usually worth a few more cents for the better one. In general there are way less brand options, making it a lot easier (and faster) to choose.
3. What do you think is the best way to get about your city? i.e. bus, bike, car, etc.
I definitely would NOT want to have, much less drive, a car here. Actually there's a TV show called "Don't Drive Here" and the city featured on the latest episode was -you guessed it- Lima! It basically shows all the crazy drivers and modes of transportation used. I take the buses (called combis) everyday, which are great because they're quick and cheap. I also wish I had a bike because there are some great streets you can ride on. AND every Sunday a street across the whole city is blocked off for cyclists. Cool!

A few of my combi tickets

4. Which store do you turn to for basics like toilet paper or cleaning supplies?
To buy in bulk I will buy at the supermarket, called Plaza Vea. It's kind of like Target because it has everything. 
5. Where do you think is the best place in your city to get a cup of coffee (or beverage you prefer) and catch up with friends? 
Good question! I'm still discovering a lot of things in the city so I'm not sure. But I really like that there are a lot of parks everywhere. Today we went to one called Mars Field - it was full of children flying kites, playing soccer, statues, a train, and doggies. It's a nice place to chat or read a book.

Extra questions from Emma, at Adventures of a London Kiwi:
1. What was your “eureka, I’m practically a native” moment? 
When the locals started asking me things. Sometimes I will get asked about a bus stop or where something is. That's the best. I hardly fit a ''typical" appearance of a local, but it feels good that I fit in and know my way around. I was really good at this in Cusco, but Lima is huge and quite new to me (for now). 
2. Does your real accent get in the way? 
I speak Spanish pretty well and get compliments on it. People are sometimes shocked that I'm from North America because my accent doesn't sound like it. Then, there's the center where I teach, the director and books use British English. In this situation, I am learning some British expressions and also teaching the cultural differences between the American and British English. 
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Friday, August 23, 2013

Reading & Street Art

Hey there! I hope everyone made it through another week and is ready for the weekend. My week has been pretty good, minus that my computer broke down :( It just turned off and didn´t start back up...ah! Hopefully it´s not the end of her! But one good thing from the week is that the sun is peeking through here in Lima. Spring is just around the corner, (next month) and I can´t wait for some sun and starry nights. (I really love this time of autumn back in the states, but I won´t complain if there´s sunshine).

So is anyone really into a book they´re reading now? I am! And a friend in my book club shared this post, which I really love. I´m fascinated by street art. AND reading. Here´s a few of my favorites:

City project: Ustroń Public Library, Poland

Artist: Jane Brewster. Powell Bookstore, Portland, Oregon.

Created by Donald Gensler, Philadelphia.

Art by Andreyante AO, in Nizhny Novgorod, Russia.

Brian Goggin’s “Language of the Birds” installation, San Francisco

Tyumen art group "Color of the city", Russia.

Aren´t these clever?? Wishing you all an awesome weekend!

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Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Tuesday Tunes #3

Hello all! I'm so ready for today because I get to start it with Tuesday Tunes :) Everyone is welcome to join in the link-up, just be sure to a) share a musical discovery b) link back to this page. There's no link-up listing but I'll try to figure that one out in the future. 

This week I chose a band that I just recently stumbled up. Maybe I saw it on the YouTube sidebar of recommendations. They're music leaves a taste of wildness and freedom lingering in your ears. I previewed several of their songs, but this one really stuck out to me for several reasons: 1) deep respect for nature 2) spiritual and mysterious elements 3) an alligator sliding down sand dunes! 
Artist: Le Loup
Song Recommended: "Forgive Me"

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Monday, August 19, 2013

Weekly Wishes #2

Happy new week kiddies! Who else is shocked at how fast August is flying by?! Well, I love that I'm starting Weekly Wishes with The Nectar Collectives. It's always good to define the direction you want your week to go.

1. More chia experiments: Definitely did! I've tried several different recipes with these little guys and am loving them still more. You can look forward to some posts this week!
2. Update blog design: Did you notice?
3. Meet up with some new people: Well, I've reached out to some people so this one is in progress. I definitely need some girlfriends here! 
4. Go to a cultural event/museum/showMy husband and I went to the Natural History Museum. It fun such a fun day learning about animals and rocks/minerals. We even made a birthday video for my mom there, which she really liked :)
5. Cut out sweets everyday: I did pretty well here. 

And now, my goals for this week! 
1. Continue with previous goal #3
2. Wash pile of laundry: Why is it so daunting? Here in Peru I wash most of my clothes by hand. And really I don't mind it. It's actually meditative for me. It's just taking the step to start it. But this week it's happening!
3. Look into more work options: Yep, I need another part-time gig.
4. 20 minute quality time: Spend at least 20 daily minutes of quality time with my husband. This doesn't sound like much but the key word is quality here. We're together quite often but not necessarily spending quality time. 
5. Publish new DIY video...get your plastic bags and iron ready!

I hope you all have a good week and things transpire for you :)

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Liebster Award again :)

Super excited for my number 2 Liebster Award, from Leia! She's got a adventure-filled blog and is another lady traveler, currently in Tennessee. I love reading her travel, food, and life adventures on her blog Latitude Adjustment

So this award is given to new and upcoming bloggers who want to build their audience and exposure, which is just what I'm working on these days! If you want to see Part 1, it's right here.

11 Random Facts:
1. I love world music - from African drum beats to Irish tin pipe and Andean flutes! 
2. I was in Central America 2 times, both in Costa Rica. Love that place!
3. One day I'd love to have a large garden and teach about herbal remedies.
4. Dr. Seuss(Theodore Gissel) was a genius! One favorite of mine is The Lorax.
5. I haven't shampoo'ed my hair in over a month {read about that here}
6. I feel lucky that my husband is my encyclopedia on all wonderful films :) (ok maybe not all)
7. Currently loving: almond extract and chia seeds (not together...but I should try that too!)
8. I could really go for some deep bass dub step these days. Oh, South America, can you provide this?
9. I can't wait to bring my husband to the US for his first time!
10. I'm reading a historical novel called Pope Joan. It's about a woman in the priesthood who pushed the social norms back in the day. It's really good.
11. I like insects. 

11 Questions Given:
1. What do you do to make yourself feel better after going through a hard/tough/sad situation? Make sure I've had a good cry to get it out. Remember than things are always changing is a reassuring thought. And going out in nature or being with girlfriends helps too. 

2. What are three songs you absolutely love & would listen to over & over again? 
     Enya, just so relaxing :)
     Ootischenia - The Be Good Tanyas
     The Trapeze Swinger - Iron & Wine

3. What is your idea of THEE ultimate vacation?
 That would be a day filled with nature adventure, finding a little quirky local place, and eating some delicious food. Somewhere tropical :)

4. If money & jobs weren't a factor, what's one place in the world would you live?

Maybe in a jungle of Thailand - I'm dying to explore Asia! 

5. If you had to watch one television show for the rest of your life, what would it be?

I haven't watched many shows since Boy Meets World and Sister Sister days (oh, classic 90s shows!). Actually I hardly ever watch TV. But...a friend did recently introduce me to How I Met Your Mother and I'm guiltily loving it.

6. What is something you can do really well?

I'm told I'm really good at listening. 

7. Where in the world would you NOT want to live? Why?
I don't think I'd like to live in a very isolated place for too long. Hick towns that consistent of gas stations and WalMart. To me it's important to have the aspect of community and be close to natural beauty. Plus, WalMart is just awful and I would be horrified to have to only shop there!

8. What is a craft/hobby/interest you wish you were good at?

I like this question...I'd love to learn to be skilled at card and paper making :)  

9. If you could have dinner with any 4 people, living or dead, who would they be?

I'd love to meet some of the classics: Audrey Hepburn, Marilyn Monroe, Ella Fitzgerald...and Savion Glover, tap idol!

10. What is the best food you have ever tasted?

Holy moly. There's such dee-licious food out there. I love love love the taste of sweet coconut curry. Pretty hard to beat.

11. What do you do with “me” time?

I love "me" time! It's when I will watch said TV show (my husband teases me about it), read, work on a project, or blast some music. 

My Questions for Others:
1. What's your middle name?
2. What's the newest blog you are excited to read?
3. What's your favorite dessert?
4. What was your best costume (Halloween or otherwise) EVER?
5. If you could speak another language what do it be? Why?
6. Your dream vacation:
7. Share one aspirations you want to complete in your life.
8. Where are you most content?
9. What song makes you really happy?
10. What song is playing now or the last song you listened to?
11. Where do you prefer: city, country, mountains, or beach? Why?

This time I'm tagging:
Megan @ Neither Here Nor There
Kerry @ Till Then Smile Often
Whoops, who else would like to join??

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Friday, August 16, 2013

Off the beaten road in Peru: Choquequirao

A view on our way to the Choquequirao ruins.
Photography by Diane Patterson
I re-found this post that I had on my old blog and decided to re-share it here. Have a stunning weekend, like these beautiful mountains! Thanks to Diane Patterson for the beautiful photography.

It was a last minute trip. My good friend, Diane, invited me. Her and several others were planning a 5 day trek in the mountains to the ruins of Choquequirao (pronounced "cho-kay-kir-ow"). At this time my old high school and tap friend, Megan, was flying in to visit. I picked her up from the airport and threw out the idea. She was down, so we planned to leave the following morning at 5am. 

Setting out from the town of Cachora.

We met the other 5 ladies on a street corner in the dark starry sky of the early morning. We had our hiking and sleeping gear packed, while the food and tents were organized by our "tour". We headed out to the town of Cachora, about 3 hours from Cusco. Upon our arrival at our check-in site, it was lunch time. In the smallish rural farmhouse (with corresponding cuy, or guinea pig, chickens, cats, and dogs) we ate a home-y menù meal (which includes soap and a main dishes of usually rice). Then we were off into the natural beauty of the fields and trees, and later, river and mountains.

We were 6 ladies and 1 young Peruvian guide. We had 2 mules carrying our belongings and camp site, essentially. Venturing out into a huge natural entity, I really had no idea what to expect. For Megan and       myself it was our first real trekking experience (the     whole sha-bang, camping and all). Little did we know   that we would return true mountain women.

Day 1 was an easy easing-into the experience. With beautiful scenery, rare and strange flora, laughing and conversations, the day passed quickly. The slight problem was that we were enjoying so much, taking every picture possible, that we got a bit behind schedule. It was getting dark and we couldn't walk for too long in the dark so we stayed at a campsite which was a bit before our planned site. This meant the following day we would leave early.     

Going down the canyon to forge the river in a cage!
Photography by Diane Patterson

Day 2 We wake up about 4am while the sky has not yet awoken. We needed to go as early as possible to cross the river and start the long 5 hour uphill trek to the top of the next mountain. Being out at this time was creepy and beautiful. After several hours of down-hilling it, we approached a rocky area in the canyon. The scenery had dramatically changed from the tree-flower filled areas above. All the way at the bottom of the canyon, we reached the Apurimac River. 
My friend and I soaring across the river.
Photography by Diane Patterson

We crossed in a cage-like structure on a cable, which definitely would be a lawsuit in the US. Since the bridge had been  ashed away when the river flooded, this was how everyone crossed. Someone had to push us as far as possible, while someone on the other side would pull the remainder. If there was no one there to help, I imagine it would be quite a challenge. Then, the uphill trek began. Switchback after switchback. Playing word games and conversing kept my mind distracted from thinking about how difficult the climb was. After 5 tedious, partly agonizing and partly inspiring, hours we made it back up to our campsite on the next mountain. I am proud to say that the thought never crossed my mind that I wouldn't make it. In times like these, positivity is crucial.

We arrived at a little campo (farm) and plopped down ourselves to gaze at the mountains we´d climbed, breathe the fresh air, and admire the chickens and roosters prancing around. Soon lunch was cooked by our great chef and ready for us. Food never tastes so good as after such long and intense activity. We couldn't quite determine if the food really was that good or if it seemed better because of our hunger and exhaustion. We ate happily and relaxed in the evening hours.

Can you spot us on the terraces? 
Photography by Diane Patterson 

Day 3 In the early hours we prepare and set off on a several hour hike to the ruins, which was farther than we imagined. Upon crossing over to the next mountain, again the scenery diverged into a lush and green array of colors. We passed several refreshing waterfalls along the way. Alas we arrived the entrance of the ruins and our first exploration were the gigantic terraces, with great views of the soaring mountains. Then we continued up to the Plaza Principál where we ate lunch and rested. Then off to explore all the areas of the ruins Temples of the Sun and the Moon, workshops, storehouses, terraces for growing medicinal plants, and at the very top the palace of the Inca. Then we hiked down one side of the mountain to find the Sector de las Llamas. There are basically stone constructions that make up 24 llamas in the terraces. When we crossed to a view point, we could see the whole wall. Gorgeous views as the sun played its shadow dance upon the mountains. Visiting the ruins was an all-day event and we returned after nightfall, with our headlights shining the way 

Apparently, the ruins aren't as big as Machu Picchu but it felt even more incredible because of the challenging arrival and because there were so few others. It seemed like a desolate ancient city that we'd discovered.

Day 4 We packed up our campsite, filled our water bottles, and headed back down the switchback slope. This time instead of 5 hours, it was only 3 as we could go back much faster. It was nice to walk in the morning, cool and fresh. But we also needed to hurry because in a few hours the sun would be furiously beating upon us. Along the way, we met a couple. The woman had hurt her back and was on the ground, lying there. We stopped to help, gave food and water, made a type of shelter out of the emergency blanket. We were under the impression we could notify someone to help at the base on the canyon, where there was a center. Then we received information that there were no longer radios there and the only way to contact a source of help was in the ruins at the top, about 6 hours away if someone went directly. We wanted to help and were torn about what to do. We said prayers and words of hope for them and had to continue on our way. 

Lots of rare and beautiful plant life.
Photography by Diane Patterson
This became own topic of discussion for the next few miles. We crossed the river and headed up the dusty rocky switchbacks. The sun began taking its midday course, making the incline that much more difficult. After a few hours, seemingly an eternity, we arrived at our rest and lunch site. We rested in the cool shade of the lemon and avocado trees, drenching ourselves in water (and at least myself, tending mosquito wounds). Lunch couldn't have been better. Just a few more hours uphill brought us to the campsite of the first night.

At some point this afternoon we were relayed news of the woman that she was alright, nothing was broken, and she was able to move and continue the walk. I was glad, but still raging about the irresponsibility of the park.

Day 5 Our last day of the journey would be no shorter than the others, but we would return to Cusco triumphant and with a certain bond that would never be broken. We trekked up to the top of the next mountain, to a great viewpoint. Where we took more jumping pictures, to stay true to our theme throughout the trip. Our guide led a little ceremony for the Pachamama (the mother earth) and we took a few moments to meditate in the greatness of the mountain wilderness. On our way to our final destination, Cachora. Again, the scenery changed into a Eucalyptus- and muña-filled forest and I began to recognize where we were, although it looked quite different now.

We had arrived, exuberant in our achievement but exhausted from its difficulty. I savored the feeling of taking off my tight and dusty shoes. Eating lunch was a much needed revival of energy. From here on we would head back to Cusco, and decided to stop at some "hot springs" along the way. They turned out to be somewhat disappointed and were just tepid swimming pools. Car games, a whole lot of singing and laughing, and we were back to the reality of Cusco.

A few tips if you're thinking of trekking Choquequirao:
     ~ I recommend going with a tour agency. Ours was about $200 and included a guide, a cook and all meals, and mules to carry our things.
     ~ Bring poles for climbing, they really came in handy!
     ~ Go in dry season! There are many accidents with rock slides in wet season. 
     ~ It's a good idea to bring a full equipped emergency kit. As of Aug. 2012 the stations weren't well equipped with emergency gear or radio signal, which can be dangerous.
     ~ If you're looking for a more off-the-beaten-road adventure than Machu Picchu and a challenge, I highly recommend this trek. It is sure to be fill with fun and stunning natural views.

Have you ever felt really accomplished for something yourself to do? What keeps you inspired?

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Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Tuesday Tunes #2

Yay my second Tuesday Tunes! This is a weekly post I created to share new musical discoveries and favorite artists...because who doesn't love music?! I definitely do, and all kinds! Feel free to join in the fun yourself.

My pick for this week is a really cool chick who does awesome covers with her ukelele and beautiful voice. Not only that, but she also sings and plays all music herself, which I love. Her name is Rae Sterling. I found her when I was looking for songs to play on my ukelele on YouTube. I keep listening, as she always has new music she's posting. Her style is versatile, but I'd definitely recommend if you wanna hear some amazing covers, get lost in beautiful vocals, or for creative inspiration :)

Artist/Group: Rae Sterling
Recommended song: No Light, No Light (Florence + the Machine cover) and if you want more, this is another favorite of mine, You and I - Lady Gaga cover

I hope you enjoy! And go check her out on You Tube @ Rae Sterling.

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Monday, August 12, 2013

Weekly Wishes #1

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Hey kiddies! Time for a little motivational link-up for the week, hosted by Melyssa over at The Nectar Collective. If you want some positive and upbeat reads about living in Japan, you've got to check out her blog. And you'll find Weekly Wishes link-up guidelines there too. goals for this week! 

1. More chia experiments: So I've discovered chia seeds. They're amazing little omega3-calcium-antioxidant filled seeds! I'm working on testing out they're capabilities in the kitchen. I'll be posting on this for sure!

2. Update blog design: I must must post my 'introduction blurb' and 'about me' pages this week...esh, talk about procrastinating!

3. Meet up with some new people: I've been in Lima about 2 weeks and have been busy with the hubby and this new job. So I really want to meet some girlfriends to hang out with and have girl time with.

4. Go to a cultural event/museum/show: I think we're planning on a movie this week. If not, I want to explore something else! I mean I'm in a huge new city, so this shouldn't be a problem,

5. Cut out sweets everyday: Yea...I've been overwhelmed by all the sweet possibilities here. Carrot, banana, coconut bread...but I'm going to overcome the craving! Maybe more chia will help with this one (it supposedly cuts hunger as one of its benefits) ;) 

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Sunday, August 11, 2013

No 'poo (shampoo that is) for 1 month!

Guess what  –  I haven’t shampoo’ed in over a month! And my hair feels so healthy! 

I first heard of this idea (known as no 'poo) from Amanda over at Living In Another Language. She’s written some great tips and FAQs about no ‘poo method, definitely check that out. Anyway, this idea was incredible to me. And since I’m pretty on-board with going green, I thought this would be an excellent project to try. 

So I'm about a month into my no ‘poo process and want to share my experience and some information I've gathered. Here we go!

What is this about? (you’re probably asking)…well, essentially it’s cutting out shampoo and using a simple wash and rinse which you can make at home using baking soda and vinegar.

What are the benefits of no ‘poo?
1.    Save some money. Shampoo is a pretty penny to spend. Especially living in a foreign country, shampoos aren't cheap. And I always like learning ways to save and be resourceful.

2.    Be chemical free. This method doesn't use any of those chemicals that are typically in shampoos (sodium lauryl sulfate, sodium laureth sulfate, and silicone to name a few). I don’t have any reason to use chemicals on my body, especially as some of the effects are unknown. Yea, I don’t trust it.

Fun appalling fact: The Environmental Working Group, based in Washington, DC, compared the ingredients in 42,000 personal care products against 50 toxicity and regulatory databases and found that most shampoos have at least one chemical that raises concern (although the hair care industry counters by claiming that the chemicals are safe in the concentrations used).

3.    Get into a natural cycle and support smart-consumerism. These two parts are really complimentary. The science of it: When hair is shampooed, the scalp is stripped of its natural oils and it works harder to create more oils. So, the more frequent shampoo use, the more oil the scalp produces. Getting into a natural cycle by cleaning hair less often will help to produce less oils. Whereas brands and marketing encourage daily washing for beautiful, healthy hair. People should be aware there are other options, from no ‘poo to low ‘poo to using natural shampoos with no chemicals.

What’s the no ‘poo recipe?
Basically, you will use the shampoo wash for the cleaning portion and get rid of oils and dirt. The vinegar rinse serves as a conditioner to leave your hair shiny. As long as you rinse well, you won’t keep the vinegar smell in your hair. The dry shampoo is to minimize oily hair between washes. This is really helpful for me. A few days after my shampoo wash I start seeing signs of oil. I just sprinkle some cornstarch on my roots, blend it in really well and brush through with a comb. And like magic the oil goes away!                  
*Shampoo wash  =  1 tbsp. baking soda  +  1 cup warm water +  stir until dissolved   *Shampoo rinse  =  2 tbsp. vinegar  +  1 cup warm water +  mix                                         *Dry shampoo =  cornstarch or cocoa powder (put in spice jar or refillable makeup stick)

How often do I wash?
I've been washing about every 5 days with baking soda. Much longer than that and my scalp starts to itch. In between washes I use the dry shampoo whenever I need to.

What’s the transition period?
There is a transition period where the scalp is adjusting to this new process and slowing down its oil production. At this time hair may be very oily or dry and irregular. This can last from a few days to a few weeks. Get past this and you’re golden!

What’s my hair like after 1 month?
My hair feels healthy and pretty much normal. It’s been a little rough transition phase because my hair still gets oily after a few days of washing.
Now I’m adapting my routine which is helping with the oil. I start by using higher amount of baking soda in the wash mixture (about 2 tbsp). Then when I’m washing I let it sit for a few minutes before rinsing out (so there’s more time for it to do it’s work).
It’s really a process and experimentation but I am happy with the results I've seen. I also feel really good about no ‘poo because I’m using natural things on my hair. When I get down my routine I know I’ll love it ever more.

Here's what my hair look like now, after 1 month of no 'poo (sorry for the bad photo quality!) Lookin' good, eh?

Any tips?
  • Experiment! Everyone’s body and hair is different. You may have to adjust your measurements and try some different techniques until it works you’re your hair type. I did and it’s made a big difference!
  • Wait out your transition period. It may be hard for the time being but could be very worth it.
  • Add an essential oil in your wash or rinse to give it a scent (I like lavender, but mint or orange would be good ones to try!)
  • Helpful troubleshooting reads over at Code Red Hat: Help for Oily HairHelp for Dry HairHelp for Itchy, Flaky, Dry Scalp
  • Check out the Facebook group for support and advice: No Poo (no shampoo) & Low Poo Hair Care Group Forum

So what do you think?! Would you give no 'poo a try? Leave a comment, question, or no 'poo experience!

Other resources:
Plethora of information @ Code Red Hat 
Very popular article @ Simple Mom
This article has a huge list of other yummy hair ingredients @ Road to 31

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