I have an 18-year-old son who's still watching Dinosaur Train, and I couldn’t be more thrilled.
We don’t watch a lot of TV in our house. When my now 21-year old was a babe, he made that decision for us. As a worn-out new mom, I'd put on a 30-minute show to get a little break. When those deliciously quiet few minutes were over, I’d gently suggest that we were “all done” in my best sing/song voice. This child was having none of that. He’d throw a fit legendary for any two-year-old that would last three times as long as the damn “Arthur” episode.
It was a lot to take. So, one day my husband and I decided it just wasn’t worth it and we cancelled the cable and hid the TV.
Now, 20 years 5 kids later we still don’t have cable (is that what’s it’s still called? I really have no idea.) My kids were still watching VHS videos up until two years ago when we made the big leap and bought a smart TV. Now my 10-year-old can show me how to stream an occasional movie (which I usually walk out on after the first half hour.)
So we made a rule that TV is only for Sundays and it has worked really well. All the younger kids know that if they want to watch something, they’ll be able to indulge on Sunday morning. This way, they are not constantly asking to turn on the tube every time boredom strikes, they know what the answers is. So they spend most of their time reading, drawing, playing or going outside.
This has worked beautifully for the last few years, but slowly and insidiously, their content has started to shift. My pre-teen twins are now starting to be drawn to some more mature shows and it’s a bit of a bummer. Gone are the sweet days of Busytown Mysteries or Kipper (oh, how I loved darling Kipper!) and Dinosaur Train.
But Kelly still watches. This morning he has the TV to himself because the twins are away on a sleepover. Most Sundays, he chooses not to watch with his brothers and I set up an iPad for him, but today he has the loft and the big TV to himself and I can hear him chuckling from down below. It’s such a delightful sound, I climb the stairs to investigate.
There he is, all cross-legged and cozy, enjoying the simple pleasures of Dinosaur Train.
My heart swells with love for this person. I am so thankful to have this 18-year-old sage in my life! I have been blessed with lots of boys, so I know the typical trajectory: Even with our Sunday rule, I’m going to lose my ten-year-olds in about two years (and I know we’re probably way outside the norm here, but that’s the gift of Sundays). All too soon I’m going to have to be screening for inappropriate and violent content. I’m going to be desperately hanging on the the last shreds of their innocence and it’s going to inevitably slip from my grasp.
This comparison is what makes me treasure my cross-legged boy. I know where “normal” leads and I’ve had plenty of it, thanks. I’m happy to take a break from the typical teenager. I’ve done it twice and am in the middle of my third go ‘round, and frankly, it’s exhausting. I’m down on my knees thanking the gods above that I was blessed with Kelly. Every day (and I mean EVERY day) when I pick Kelly up from school, I ask how his day is and the reply is an emphatic, “Really great!” And, ya know what? It actually was. There was no high school drama, no catty social media posts to cause upset, no anxiety over grades or social insecurity. With Kelly, we don't have to worry about drinking or drugs or depression--such intense stuff! We just relax into the simple pleasures of life and it’s absolutely delightful!
Last week we took him to New York City to watch his oldest brother graduate from college. This was kind of a default choice; we only had four tickets to the graduation, so we couldn’t take the whole family and Kelly’s schedule is a bit more complicated than the other kids, so we just brought him along. I was a bit unsure as to how things were going to unfold, but as usual, Kelly’s presence was a gift to us.
He sat through the two+ hour long, dry ceremony and did not make a peep--no sighs, no complaints. I sat next to a well-coiffed woman who’s daughter was born and raised in Manhattan. She glanced to my left and caught a glimpse of Kelly and quickly averted her eyes. This was my cue to engage her in conversation. (I can never let that shit go unprobed.)
I know from experience that she is probably terrified. To her, Kelly is a living example of her worst nightmare. She’s there to watch her daughter graduate from one of the top schools in the city and Kelly represents the appalling opposite of that. I chatter on about my boy that is graduating today too, and how the majority of his siblings did not make the cut to attend; only Kelly got the privilege. She’s forced to acknowledge him then. She glances over and says, “He’s sweet. God bless him.”
This ridiculous, condescending statement makes me laugh (I think the word “guffaw” might be what I’m looking for here, because that’s pretty much what I do...right in her face. I cannot help myself). I just reply, “He is the delight of my life. You have no idea.” I raise the hand that is intertwined with mine and give it a kiss. He leans into me and puts his head on my shoulder. I do not offer this woman any more of my time.
Kelly turns our to be our greatest teacher on this trip. I don’t know why I’m surprised, he teaches me something every day, but my brain resets to “typical” each morning and Kelly’s simple lessons always seem to take me by surprise.
I’d been dreading this trip to the city. Being a sensory sensitive individual, the sights and sounds and smells of Manhattan are completely overwhelming to me. I thought this would be true for Kelly as well, and I was worried about it. But he completely takes me by surprise and delights in the city. He tells me he wants to live there with his brother. As I am miserably tiptoeing past a man hosing down the sidewalk in front of a building, cringing as the urine infused water splashes onto the backs of my bare calves, Kelly is simply delighting in all the action around him. I look at his wonder and it makes me stop and consciously relax. I force myself to lighten the hell up. Country mouse has got to get the f*ck over herself and try to enjoy her surroundings! Right then and there, I shift my thoughts from my splattered calves and I look up. In front of me is a beautifully ornate building--carvings made by hand long before power tools were even a thing. It’s truly a wonder and I would have missed it if I didn’t have Kelly by my side.
The lessons continue. At a the rooftop graduation party on the Upper West Side, he was the first to notice the brilliant sunset reflected in a wall of glass.
The next day, as we walked through Central Park, he nudged us into the Central Park Zoo, where we were surprised to find a sweet oasis full of heart.
And when the day was done, and our exhausted selves pulled out the foam bed in our Airbnb only to discover it was 1/3 plywood and not suitable for sleep, Kelly happily climbed in and made do. No whining, no complaints. He just made it work. We fell into sleep grateful for our delightful travelling companion.
If you told me 18 years ago that my adult child would still be choosing to watch Dinosaur Train on his Sunday morning, I probably would have curled into a ball and wept. But that version of me also would have looked sideways at Kelly in Lincoln Center, feeling sorry for him and his mom, not understanding that there are all kinds of knowledge and all kinds of people and we all have value.
Kelly is my live-in sage. When I fall into my typical human patterns, he reminds me to check my judgement, to not diminish something that I don’t understand, even (or maybe especially) if it scares me. Go ahead, open up and take a closer look. There very well be some beauty that you missed.
When I first heard this song by The Killers, it immediately made me think of Kelly. It came on today and he let me take some footage of his moves. My god, I love this person.
The next time someone tries to “bless him”, I think I’m going to reply with,
“I got news for you baby, you’re looking at The Man!"
My doTERRA essential oils are the first tools I reach for when it comes to the health care of my kids, and they are especially helpful with Kelly. He won't swallow a pill, so the aromatic and topical use of these pure and potent plant compounds are incredible at supporting his respiratory and immune health (Breathe respiratory blend sits near his bed at all times!)
If you would like some more information on how to use doTERRA products for your family, or specifically for your special needs or sensitive child, please feel free to contact me below. I'd love to help! I understand the chemistry and the "how and why" of essential oils, so I can help you choose the right products for your family and your own unique needs. Let's talk!
I woke with an ache in my heart this morning. It took me a beat or two to come out of my sleepy haze and connect my brain to my heart, but then it was clear: Oh, yeah...that’s why.
My emotions take me by surprise because what’s happening is a completely positive thing, something everyone in the family has been excited about for months. This sadness makes no sense.
But it involves one of my older kids and we mothers can’t catch a break—even the most wonderful changes trigger the cascade. We’ve been through too much and our love runs too deep.
So here I am on this spectacular late spring morning feeling sad. The first thing I do is acknowledge it. Yup, I feel this and I honor it. It feels a bit ridiculous because I was so excited about the change, but no matter. My feelings are real, even if unexpected.
Next I reach for my essential oils. I role Console on my palms and breathe it in. I rub it all over my neck. The tree and flowers essences work their way into my limbic system and do their magic. I feel the effects instantly, like a comforting hug. Oh, I love this oil blend so!
The next thing I do is get outside. I walk my pup down my country road and appreciate the breeze. When I get home, I grab my basket and scissors and collect some flowers.
Of course there’s the exquisite peonies, the stunning french lilac, the complex allium, but what draws my attention are the simple violets--so common that we often trample them without a second look. Today, I bend and examine each sweet face. My heart hurts, so I look for comfort in the metaphor they provide for me: simple beauty right under my feet, though I rarely stop to appreciate. I snip a few for my windowsill and delight in their happy faces.
I’m curious about these little flowers that have always just be there, that chubby hands have presented to me through the years, so I take a moment to look them up. I call them Johnny jump-ups or violets, but I discover that they go by another name, too. One that makes me smile: Heartsease.
My mama heart takes it in. So much beauty and heartache in this life. I take another moment to acknowledge its complexity. I reapply my Console heart balm, close my eyes and breathe deeply into this belly that has housed so many.
I place my new friends next to my other small, simple treasures.
I turn and catch a glimpse of a photo on the fridge, one that’s been there for years, so I don’t notice it’s sweetness any longer. I let my eyes fill once again.
I think of my boy, a simple, steady presence that I took for granted. I’ll allow myself a little more time to mourn the empty space he left behind, but then it will be time to get to work and change it into something useful for the rest of us. We need the space and he’s moved on to a better one, so best for everyone to let the alchemy of change weave it’s magic.
I wipe the tears and reach for the broom and the mop. Time to move forward. Transformation awaits.
I got up late this morning and didn’t have time to wash my hair. After a quick assessment, I pulled it back and threw it in a loose bun. Hmm...totally acceptable! Actually, I kind of like it!
Done and done. I head downstairs and wake the kids.
I’m making my fourth egg sandwich of the morning when I feel someone lightly touch my new hair-do from behind. “Oh, you’ve got a cute little bun this morning!” my 15-year-old daughter exclaims.
I turn to greet my lovely girl and reflexively reply, “Yeah, what do ya think?”
She tilts her head and ponders. The pause tells me what’s coming. She squints a bit and scrunches her nose. With a shake of her head she makes her ruling: “Not good.”
Ha! There’s nothing like the perspective of one’s teenage daughter! She yammers on about how it makes me look old because it highlights my grey hair, and continues with how she found this age-guessing app and she put my picture in and it guessed that I that I was only 35! Isn't that great?
Oh, I’m so glad, my darling! I roll my eyes and finish serving all of these people that I have created. I go through the rest of the morning motions, but can’t help but peek at myself in the mirror when I pass by. It’s only a flicker, but the thoughts are there:
Can I really wear my hair like this? Maybe I am too old?
It happens so quickly, this self-doubt thing. It’s sneaky and insidious. My work is to squelch it before it takes root, so I use the simplest tools I have: my breath and my oils.
I grab one of my favorites: Bergamot. I crack it open and take a sniff...yum. A few drops go in my palm and over my heart. I take a few seconds to close my eyes and breathe. Ah, yes...that’s better. I glance at myself one more time and smile. Yep, I’m going with the mom bun, dammit.
We head to the car and drive to school. I get a kiss from the boys and my girl offers her forehead. Before she can resist, I pull her close and squeeze her tight, making sure to leave some Bergamot on her back.
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I love my oils. I mean I REALLY love them. I've collected a whole big box, and as I paused in front of them this morning wondering what to choose, I laughed at myself, because I wanted to say it out loud to my little brown bottles!
Sounds ridiculous, I know.
But if your a person like me, who has spent her whole life avoiding artificial smells because they truly make me sick to my stomach, these pure compounds make me swoon. I delight in their aromatic goodness and immediately respond to their therapeutic vapors. As I type, ClaryCalm is wafting up to my brain, bringing me ease and helping me focus...I can feel it!
How else do I use my little bottles? I'm happy to share!
When I wake in the morning, if I need a little help rolling out of bed, I grab my peppermint from my nightstand and take a whiff. Just smelling it lights up my brain.
I get out of bed and brush my teeth with my On Guard toothpaste and wash my face with my Verage system and use my Immortelle anti-aging blend with my moisturizer...yum.
I take my whining dog for a walk (she will get a drop of cedarwood on her head to chill her out and ward off ticks).
This is my meditative time, so I put a dab or frankincense and sandalwood on my forehead to help me connect. It does just that.
I get back to the house and set up the diffuser to meet our needs for the day:
Sniffles? On Guard or Lemon, lavender and peppermint
Bummed out? Bergamot and Geranium
Hyper? How about a little Peace
Everyone gets fed and we make the lunches. Boys add a drop of lemon to their water bottles (I prefer Slim and Sassy for metabolic support...the oil is far better than that silly name!)
We take our supplements; I add the Phytoestrogen complex to balance my hormones (goodbye hot flashes!)
I drop them at school and I head to the office (where Deep Blue is hard at work). I'll will probably reach for an oil by midday to boost my brain or refocus (InTune--doTERRA's focus blend) or maybe I'll use Forgive for some grounding.
We'll return back home and the day will wind down. We might use some Digest Tabs after dinner if we need support with digestion-these taste awesome and are a natural alternative to Tums.
We will all take some Serentiy softgels and fill our diffusers for a good night's sleep (Serenity, Vetiver, Lavender, Breathe...)
Sounds like a lot, huh? Well, don't forget that I had a whole day in there, too, and my usage was spread out. All together, I only used about 15-20 drops of oil and that includes the 8-10 that go in the diffusers!
Essential oils are so concentrated that it only takes the smallest amount to make a big impact.
I have just changed the quality of my life (and my family's!) for about $2-3 per day! Amazing.
Such a simple way to alter my mood or support my kids, boost our immune systems and even help my pup.
Now it's your turn! Let me show you how to integrate these oils into your everyday...and, oh yeah, you'll end up smelling great, too!
A whole new world is waiting for you--one filled with precious, powerful, versatile plants and a community full of integrity and heart.
Snowing again this morning up at the house.
It's almost more than I can take, but I put this blend into the diffuser at the office and all was right with the world! Patients have been commenting on it all morning...so good!
Get these beautiful oils into your home and discover how life-changing they can be!
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Get ready to feel amazing both inside and outbecause we are initiating a Daily Health Habits Challenge for the entire month of April on Facebook! doTERRA will be doing daily giveaways for those that participate in the daily challenges as well as larger prizes at the end for individuals who have participated each day of the challenge.
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Yet another snow day here. It started at about 3pm yesterday (after I picked the kids up early from school!) and it has been going ever since. We now have a foot and it's still coming. I'm hiding in nook upstairs to try to get some work done (ah! just after I typed those words, came the sound of steps on the stairs and requests for eggs! To be continued....)
Take two...(That's just how it goes around here)
This snowy day starts with me enjoying a cup of tea with Kelly. Lovely, right? Then I happen to glance at his feet and spot a very upsetting big toe. Kelly has the unfortunate habit of picking his toenails. It's nasty.
And now one has gone bad...very bad. I'll spare you the details, but I will mention how I'm treating it.
First we gave it a good soak: Warm water with a drop of Frankincence (for inflammation),
a drop of Melaluca (anti-bacterial and anti-fungal)
a drop of Helichrysum (for healing)
I've talked about the first two before, but I save the Heli for the big jobs. It's a pricey one, but an incredible healer. According to Kurt Schnaubelt, Ph.D (in chemistry) and the author of "The Healing Intelligence of Essential Oils", Helichrysum "is so mild it is the preferred option for the immediate treatment of injuries, especially bleeding wounds. Dropping this oil into a bleeding wound sanitizes the wound, speeds the closure and effectively stops the pain. Using it undiluted on wounds avoids bringing other less diluted substances, such as fatty base oils, into the wound. It is self explanatory that using Helichrysum essential oil on wound requires a genuine and authentic oil."
Wow. There's a lot going on there and I need to be clear about several things:
1) I am not recommending you treat deep wounds with essential oils! Maybe Dr. Kurt would, but he has more knowledge than I.
When in doubt, get it checked out!
2) He's clearly making the point of buying quality essential oils. After doing years of research on this, I would only use doTERRA oils. Find out why:
Now back to my friend Heli:
Helichrysum is sometimes called "liquid stitches" because of it's anti-inflammatory and tissue-regenerating properties. And it's a powerful one. A drop is all you need. For unbroken skin, it is best used in dilution and this makes the oil more affordable. Dr. Kurt states that "a 1% dilution in sesame oil is equally as effective as it would be in higher concentrations."
After the soak, we put some Correct X ointment on it and a band-aid and Kelly said it already felt better. We will soak again, put a drop of Heli directly on the spot and re-apply the Correct-X before bed.
We also had a lesson in using the clippers...fingers crossed!
Would you like to learn more about the incredible healing powers of these beautiful oils?
I'd love to help you!
Just contact me and we'll schedule a FREE 30-minute talk to go over what you,and your family, needs.
Today was one of those days that I woke with the threat of a headache. Last night was intense, as we sat with our middle-schooler and supported her as she shared her fears of being bullied at school. Emails were sent and calls were made and I tossed and turned thinking of our meeting with the principal this morning.
The meeting went well and things felt a bit more under control, but my mood and the day were still grey and the cold rain pored down. My head started to throb. Exhausted, I looked at Jeb and said, "I may actually need to take something."
Here's the thing: I am the biggest headache baby! Due to some ingrained poor postural habits, I'm susceptible to tension headaches and they debilitate me. I can't tolerate life. If I don't stay active, I'm setting myself up for a whopper.
Well, I haven't been active and my kids aren't making life easy. Jeb, exhausted himself, agreed that this might be the time to turn to some over-the-counter help. He told me to go get some Tylenol and recommended a dosage.
I went straight to the grocery store (because, of course, I had to get some food for the masses, and they would have medications, too). As I stood at the deli counter, my head pounded. I felt a little nauseous from the pain. I leaned over my cart as I waited for my sliced turkey and rubbed my temples and then I remembered! I had my Bali bag with me! (this is may travel storage bag, FREE for those looking to explore these oils with me with a kit.)
I pulled it out and ran the Past Tense over my temples and along the base of my skull, then over my shoulders. I pulled out the Digest Zen and took a drop...same with the Copaiba.
I grabbed my turkey and wheeled my cart away. Not five steps in and I realized that I FELT BETTER! I honestly was shocked! How could I forget that I have these tools? Life sweeps me away and I get in panic mode and forget about the tools I have right at my finger tips! I could have wept with relief!
I went about my shopping and headed out the door. I was halfway to my car when I realized that I forgot the Tylenol! I had to laugh out loud! that was the whole reason for my trip to the store in the first place!
I got in the car and reapplied my oils.
Small amounts, more frequently is the key to effectiveness with these plant medicines. I did not want that tension to revisit!
Past Tense is DoTERRA's tension blend. It is an amazing blend of wintergreen, lavender, peppermint, frankincense, cilantro, roman chamomile, marjoram, basil, and rosemary. Wintergreen's main component is methyl salicylate. Methyl salicylate is a topical analgesic, meaning it relieves pain when applied to the body. Yes, I'll take that!
I've already raved about Franky and lavender and Copaiba. Roman chamomile is incredible, too. This essential oil is composed primarily of esters, ranging from 66% to 78%. Ester rich oils are antispasmodic, anti inflammatory, calming to the CNS, and sedative. Yes, thank you, layer it on! You can read about the rest of these synergistic ingredients here.
Digest Zen's antispasmodic blend of oils are very effective for relieving occcasional nausea or tummy upset and it smells so soothing and yummy.
Some deep breathing, a few more applications of my oils and some gentle yoga and I was myself again.
I did end up getting some Tylenol just to have in our medicine drawer. It's good to have a full bag of tricks and I am respectful of them all. Now, if I can just remember to use them!
I have a business event tomorrow where I get 60 seconds to sell my wares.
I was planning on preparing today, but surprise!! A snow day and all my kids are home with me.
Well, the dang show must go on. This is how women in business roll!