January 24, 2013

Really Natural Books: Lose Weight, Stop Stress and Make Better Love: 5 Easy Steps by Training Your Brain

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My first reaction to Lose Weight, Stop Stress and Make Better Love: 5 Easy Steps by Training Your Brain by Dr. Sommer is the title. It's a whammy! Is this what most people want from life?

If you want to

  • lose weight and are tired of diets
  • feel relaxed (without pills) and reduce stress, with mindfulness
  • have better control of your life, to take charge in more effective ways, and even improve your love life
This life changing short, easily understood book will tell you how, using brain science.

Lose Weight, Stop Stress & Make Better Love in 5 Easy Steps by Training Your Brain provides you with a brief, very effective guide to help you conquer stress and overeating, and thus successfully, once and for all, fight weight-gain and obesity.

Lose Weight, Stop Stress & Make Better Love in 5 Easy Steps takes a very different approach to the problem of weight control. Using your brain power and nervous system you can modify, if not eliminate, a major cause of unhealthy eating: STRESS. Did you know that our brain can convert stress feelings into hunger signals?

Moreover, using modern brain science you will be able to apply the techniques learned here to enhance the pleasure in your love life, and can even help you to sleep better.

In this innovative book he shares his therapeutic breakthroughs in the service of helping with weight, stress and love life problems affecting the lives of increasing millions of people, worldwide.

The wallet card with the 5 Steps in the book is a free bonus that can be with you at all times as a constant companion, strengthening your ability to deal with food/drink, hunger, and stress. It is key to a more fulfilled, happier life. In addition, information on how to acquire the 5 Step Mobile Apps is also in the book.


This little book includes things like "Personal Daily Weight Control Logs" and information on how to control your weight without dieting. On the section for stress relief, the two principles of "Present Centered" and "Process Absorbed" are explained. As for making love, it relates to stress. 

Personally, I find more value in the Dalai Lama's How to Expand Love: Widening the Circle of Loving Relationships for self-help advice. I think it is more about giving and receiving love that helps us deal with stress that leads to the problems Dr. Sommer is addressing in his simple book.  We can't ignore our spiritual side, just as much as we can't ignore the physical side. 

disclosure: The products described above were sent to us as free samples. Prior assurances as to the nature of the reviews, whether positive or negative, were not given. No financial payments were accepted in exchange for the reviews. The reviews reflect our honest, authentic opinions.

Jennifer Lance at Permalink social bookmarking

January 17, 2013

Save Money: Budget Savvy Diva's Guide to Slashing Your Grocery Bill

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One of my friend's is always quick to remind that the more money you spend, the more money you need to make. In this time of economic recession, saving money is even more important or urgent than before when jobs were more plentiful.

Budget Savvy Diva's Guide to Slashing Your Grocery Bill by 50% or More: Secret Tricks and Clever Tips for Eating Great and Saving Money by Sara Lundberg is a handy little book. From coupons to sale cycles, Lundberg offers tips that are easy to implement.

Do you want to score the hottest bargains and best deals? It's easier than you think! In this helpful pocket guide, Sara Lundberg, author of the super-saver website BudgetSavvyDiva.com, reveals her cleverest, most effective and down-right sneakiest strategies for saving money while filling the cart with all your favorite foods. Thanks to the advice in this book, you'll quickly be navigating the grocery aisles like a pro:

•Tips for maximizing coupons
•Tricks for finding hidden bargains
•Delicious recipes that stretch every dollar
•Techniques for smart, stress-free shopping


These tips work for shopping at health food stores and coops too! Our coop has a great coupon book that if you hit at the right time saves a bundle.

Lundberg also talks about creating a stockpile in the kitchen of staples that last and figuring out how much food you really need to prevent food waste.


disclosure: The products described above were sent to us as free samples. Prior assurances as to the nature of the reviews, whether positive or negative, were not given. No financial payments were accepted in exchange for the reviews. The reviews reflect our honest, authentic opinions.

Jennifer Lance at Permalink social bookmarking

January 9, 2013

National Geographic Books: Thrive Finding Happiness the Blue Zones Way

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Are you happy? What makes you happy? Do you even know what makes you happy?

Thrive: Finding Happiness the Blue Zones Way by Dan Buettner has gotten a lot of media attention. NPR reports:

Buettner devotes a section of Thrive to Denmark, where the "gross national happiness" is incredibly high. When asked why this is, he notes that the country's leveling tax structure enables its citizens to have more freedom. "Normally when we think of happiness, we think of money and status, but Denmark teaches us the opposite lesson," he says. "There, you have a place where you are taxed to the mean. A cultural norm reminds everybody that they are no better than everybody else, so you're not going to choose your career path based on status. You're in a place where a garbage man makes as much as a lawyer. So what you have are 4 million people who excel at things like furniture design and architecture."

Buettner also notes that in Denmark, most people only work "37 hours a week on average, and they take their full six weeks of vacation," noting that a liberal work schedule leads to greater happiness overall.

From Singapore to San Luis Obispo, Buettner examines happy places on our planet. Things like family matters, as in Singapore where it is the "center of social structure" and extends beyond genetics to friends providing an "extended support system". Or as in San Luis Obispo where grapes come into play (my secret to happiness :)). One glass of wine increases dopamine in the brain making one feel happy. Or as in Mexico where the sunny warm climate provides vitamin D, also known as the "happiness vitamin".

Beyond simple ideas like being in the sunshine and drinking wine, Buettner dives deeper into contentment and offers lessons at the end of the book.

In THRIVE, New York Times bestselling author and explorer, Dan Buettner, reports on the surprising findings from his five-year global study on the keys to personal happiness. In addition to sharing his extraordinary accounts of the happiest people on the planet, Buettner examines how their unique lifestyles correlate to their extraordinary well-being. Finally -- and most important -- Buettner details how to incorporate these powerful characteristics into our daily routine so that we, too, can THRIVE.

This book is printed in the USA.

disclosure: The products described above were sent to us as free samples. Prior assurances as to the nature of the reviews, whether positive or negative, were not given. No financial payments were accepted in exchange for the reviews. The reviews reflect our honest, authentic opinions.

Jennifer Lance at Permalink social bookmarking

December 26, 2012

The Peaceable Forest: India's Tales of Kindness to Animals

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The Peaceable Forest: India's Tale of Kindness to Animals by Kosa Ely is a beautiful picture book and story. Based on a Vedic tale, this book teaches respect for life.

"Once," says the old man to the animals, "a hunter lived in this forest. Your grandparents lived in fear of him. The twang of his bow sent them running. Then something happened to change that forever . . . "

In this ancient parable from India, a forest-dwelling hunter learns that cruelty has consequences and that compassion has rewards. When the hunter meets the wise man Narada, "Do unto others as they would do unto you" takes on a very concrete meaning as the sage leads the hunter on an imagined journey in which the hunter becomes the hunted. When the hunter realizes how his actions affect other living things, he has a change of heart and begins to live in peace with the animals he once pursued.

Kosa Ely adapts this traditional Indian tale into an inviting narrative that presents the universal golden rule in a new and appealing way. Anna Johansson's richly detailed illustrations evoke the animal kingdom and enchanted forests with fine lines and luminous colors. The Peaceable Forest is the ideal picture book for inspiring young readers to respect life in all its forms.


I truly love his book! The tale of the hunter who hunts for fun, then realizes the pain he brings reminds families to embrace compassion. It also teaches it is never too late amend one's way and embracer a better path.  This is a lovely book to share with your children!

disclosure: The products described above were sent to us as free samples. Prior assurances as to the nature of the reviews, whether positive or negative, were not given. No financial payments were accepted in exchange for the reviews. The reviews reflect our honest, authentic opinions.

Jennifer Lance at Permalink social bookmarking

December 23, 2012

Really Natural Books: Seeds Time Capsules of Life

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Seeds: Time Capsules of Life is an amazing book! The photographs are amazing and makes one think about the origins of plant life. Such diversity and beauty, as well as pertinent information are included in this book.

In this lavish collection, artist Rob Kesseler and seed morphologist Wolfgang Stuppy of the Millennium Seed Bank at the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, present a natural history of seeds, illustrated with close-up photographs and scanning electron micrographs. The images afford an unprecedented view into a most astonishing microcosm, where even the tiniest examples are exquisitely beautiful and sophisticated--in fact Kesseler's work has been called "mystifying," "astounding," and "awe-inspiring" by scientists and critics around the world. Seeds constitutes an essential source book not only for those fascinated by the natural world, but also for artists, designers, and anyone interested in the development of biological structures. This brand-new edition features a preface by HRH the Prince of Wales, himself an avid conservationist. With its studied narrative and beautiful photographic eye, this keepsake volume is a stunning tribute to the beauty and marvel of seeds.

Seeds are the most complex organs plants ever produce. A major keystone in the evolution of land plants, the first seeds appeared some 360 million years ago. Since then they have developed into highly sophisticated propagules that have enabled plants to dominate the Earth's surface and conquer almost every possible habitat from the Antarctic to the hottest deserts. The diversity of shapes and sizes encountered in seeds is nearly endless and ranges from the impressive Seychelles nut at twenty kilos to the dustlike seeds of the orchids. No matter how small, packed into every seed is the complete genetic information needed to give rise to a new plant, whether it is a tiny herb or a giant rainforest tree. True time capsules of life, seeds may travel thousands of miles and, if necessary, wait for hundreds of years before germinating.


There is so much to be learned and amazed by this book!

disclosure: The products described above were sent to us as free samples. Prior assurances as to the nature of the reviews, whether positive or negative, were not given. No financial payments were accepted in exchange for the reviews. The reviews reflect our honest, authentic opinions.

Jennifer Lance at Permalink social bookmarking

December 14, 2012

Raw Food for Dummies: Recipes and More!

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Although I find the title of the Dummies books, well insulting, they do contain useful information in a user-friendly format.

Recently, we were sent Raw Food For Dummies by Cherie Soria and Dan Ladermann.

Celebrities like Sting, Madonna, and Woody Harrelson have drawn attention to the newest trend in eating: raw foods. Raw foodists--people whose diets consist of at least seventy-five percent raw foods--eat an uncooked, unheated, unprocessed, and organic plant-based diet. For those looking for informative facts about this way of life, the newly published Raw Food For Dummies® shares reasons for incorporating raw food into your diet and tips on how to do it, as well as more than 100 recipes covering breakfasts, lunches, dinners, appetizers, and snacks.

Followers of a raw food diet cite numerous health benefits, including healthy detoxification, increased energy levels, improved appearance of skin, improved digestion, and weight loss. Raw foods are nutrient dense with little to no saturated fats or sodium, and because they're high in potassium and rich in fiber, they are important factors in helping to reduce the risk of heart disease and other chronic ailments. Raw Food For Dummies covers these benefits, as well as information on transitioning to the raw food lifestyle (including where to buy and how to store raw foods) and the popular methods of preparing meals (sprouting, dehydrating, juicing, greening, and more).

After two of my close friends went on an Ejuva Intestinal Cleansing Program, I became inspired to eat more raw foods. Currently, I eat mostly raw foods. I feel so much healthier!  The only time I eat cooked foods is at dinner.

Raw Food for Dummies has a lot of useful information and recipes for anyone wishing to eating more food the way nature intended. I especially like the "Sweet Endings" chapter. I can't wait to try the Sweet Nut'ins 'n' Chocolate Kiss Cookies (no, they don't use Hersheys).

disclosure: The products described above were sent to us as free samples. Prior assurances as to the nature of the reviews, whether positive or negative, were not given. No financial payments were accepted in exchange for the reviews. The reviews reflect our honest, authentic opinions.

Jennifer Lance at Permalink social bookmarking

November 23, 2012

Design Your Own Destiny: Are you in balance?

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As the days of of light are shorter and holidays bring out feelings of loneliness in some, it is a good time to reflect upon our lives. We do not need to feel as if we are not in control, and our choices and intentions make all the difference in the world.

Design Your Own Destiny: Life Planning for the 21st Century by Mary A. Molloy follows six steps for changing your life:

What if you could have the life you always wanted? What if it wasn't as hard as you thought? What if instead of always asking What if? you decided to dive in and design the destiny of your dreams? That opportunity is here now in Design Your Own Destiny: Life Planning for the 21st Century.

Whether it's looking for a job or trying to figure out the next steps to take in a relationship, award-winning author, speaker and life-planner Mary A. Molloy takes readers to a place where possibilities become realities. Combining years of experience working with Fortune 500 companies and clients all over the globe, Mary provides the answers to how people can make it happen. Examining the complete life with deeper connections Molloy helps people to:

o Find work/life balance
o Create tangible goals
o Put plans into action
o See results and measure success

Whether it's changing roles, changing perspectives or challenging the status quo, Mary helps readers take control and not leave what is most important to chance. She shows readers step-by-step how to break down the complex process of changing one's life so that everyone gets a personalized and manageable way to make their dreams happen.

Inspired by a talk she gave to twenty-five homeless women - many of whom took her Life Designs and were able to leave the shelter - Design Your Own Destiny will help you create the life you want to lead!


I am not really one for self help books or life coaches. My idea of self help is to practice yoga; however, flipping through this book, I saw ideas I would like to use with my students, like the draw your dreams worksheet.

Unfortunately, there is nothing eco-friendly about this book, that I can find, unless your life goals involve living a greener life, as mine do.

disclosure: The products described above were sent to us as free samples. Prior assurances as to the nature of the reviews, whether positive or negative, were not given. No financial payments were accepted in exchange for the reviews. The reviews reflect our honest, authentic opinions.

Jennifer Lance at Permalink social bookmarking

November 15, 2012

Really Natural Books: Echoes of Earth: Finding ourselves in the origins of the planet

echoes_of_earth.jpgA truly beautiful and inspiring book, Echoes of Earth: Finding ourselves in the origins of the planet by L. Sue Baugh combines geology with spiritual wisdom.

Echoes of Earth: Finding ourselves in the origins of the planet tells the story of a life-changing journey taken by L. Sue Baugh and her colleague, Lynn Martinelli, to document some of the oldest rock and minerals in the world. They traveled to remote regions in Western Australia, Greenland, Northwest Canada, and the Grand Canyon, and eventually journeyed into territory not marked on any map.

Echoes of Earth reveals the extraordinary story they found in the breathtaking beauty and transforming power of these ancient sites. Not only did the two women reawaken their own artistic lives, they also discovered that our human origins lie hidden in the secrets of the oldest stones. We carry ancient minerals deep within our bones and ancient life within our human cells. We are all echoes of Earth.

The book's innovative design includes foldouts, half pages, and cutouts that shift the reader's perspective in surprising and profound ways. The Timelines of Earth, with illustrations by the author, reveal how ancient stone and ancient life built and still sustain this world we inhabit. Echoes of Earth invites you to explore some of the world's most ancient places and to discover for yourself our deep, intimate connection to Earth.


There is so much to be learned from this book! I hope to visit some of these places myself, and I can't wait to share it with my daughter. When we go backpacking, I always wish I knew more about the unique geology of the area.

I find especially interesting the sections on "Ancient minerals within us" and "Ancient life within us".

disclosure: The products described above were sent to us as free samples. Prior assurances as to the nature of the reviews, whether positive or negative, were not given. No financial payments were accepted in exchange for the reviews. The reviews reflect our honest, authentic opinions.

Jennifer Lance at Permalink social bookmarking

November 2, 2012

The Battle over Hetch Hetchy: America's Most Controversial Dam and the Birth of Modern Environmentalism

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The Battle over Hetch Hetchy: America's Most Controversial Dam and the Birth of Modern Environmentalism by Robert W. Righter is an extremely thorough and historical account of one of the most famous dams in the country. Filled with historical photographs of the valley that is now flooded, you can't help but wonder what was lost, not just in Hetch Hetchy, but in the hundreds of valleys that are now under reservoirs.

In the wake of the devastating 1906 earthquake and fire, the city of San Francisco desperately needed reliable supplies of water and electricity. Its mayor, James Phelan, pressed for the damming of the Tuolumne River in the newly created Yosemite National Park, setting off a firestorm of protest. For the first time in American history, a significant national opposition arose to defend and preserve nature, led by John Muir and the Sierra Club, who sought to protect what they believed was the right of all Americans to experience natural beauty, particularly the magnificent mountains of the Yosemite region. Yet the defenders of the valley, while opposing the creation of a dam and reservoir, did not intend for it to be maintained as wilderness. Instead they advocated a different kind of development--the building of roads, hotels, and an infrastructure to support recreational tourism. Using articles, pamphlets, and broadsides, they successfully whipped up public opinion against the dam. Letters from individuals began to pour into Congress by the thousands, and major newspapers published editorials condemning the dam. The fight went to the floor of Congress, where politicians debated the value of scenery and the costs of western development. Ultimately, passage of the passage of the Raker Act in 1913 by Congress granted San Francisco the right to flood the Hetch Hetchy Valley. A decade later the O'Shaughnessy Dam, the second largest civil engineering project of its day after the Panama Canal, was completed. Yet conflict continued over the ownership of the watershed and the profits derived from hydroelectrocity. To this day the reservoir provides San Francisco with a pure and reliable source of drinking water and an important source of power. Although the Sierra Club lost this battle, the controversy stirred the public into action on behalf of national parks. Future debates over dams and restoration clearly demonstrated the burgeoning strength of grassroots environmentalism. In a narrative peopled by politicians and business leaders, engineers and laborers, preservationists and ordinary citizens, Robert W. Righter tells the epic story of the first major environmental battle of the twentieth century, which reverberates to this day.

This is an incredible story in American history.

disclosure: The products described above were sent to us as free samples. Prior assurances as to the nature of the reviews, whether positive or negative, were not given. No financial payments were accepted in exchange for the reviews. The reviews reflect our honest, authentic opinions.

Jennifer Lance at Permalink social bookmarking

October 24, 2012

Really Natural Cookbooks: Real Food Fermentation

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This is a book I am really excited about, as it is something I have wanted to learn about and make for awhile. Real Food Fermentation: Preserving Whole Fresh Food with Live Cultures in Your Home Kitchen by Alex Lewin is a well illustrated, well described book about all sorts of lovely fermented foods.

Preserve your favorite foods through every season with Real Food Fermentation. Control your own ingredients, techniques, and additives. Learn a practical food-preparation skill you'll use again and again. And express yourself by making something unique and whole.

Inside, you'll find:

--All the basics: the process, the tools, and how to get started

--A guide to choosing the right ingredients

--Sauerkraut and beyond--how to ferment vegetables, including slaw-style, pickles, and kimchi

--How to ferment dairy into yogurt, kefir, crème fraîche, and butter

--How to ferment fruits, from lemons to tomatoes, and how to serve them

--How to ferment your own beverages, including mead, kombucha, vinegar, and ginger ale

--A primer on fermented meat, fish, soy, bread, and more

--Everything you need to know about why the recipes work, why they are safe, what to do if they go wrong, and how to modify them to suit your taste


This book even tells you how to cut a pepper!

I wish I had more ingredients in my garden to try these recipes, but the deer has wrecked havoc recently.  The dairy recipes looks great, and I finally know what creme fraiche really is.  

disclosure: The products described above were sent to us as free samples. Prior assurances as to the nature of the reviews, whether positive or negative, were not given. No financial payments were accepted in exchange for the reviews. The reviews reflect our honest, authentic opinions.

Jennifer Lance at Permalink social bookmarking

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