JUST IN // Pudding Please Pops and Cups!

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Check out our newest local sweet addition, Pudding Please! In Vanilla Bean with Brownie Bits, Dark Chocolate, Banana with Vanilla Cookies, Coffee with Brownie Bits flavors, these local, handmade, all-natural pudding cups and pops are an RVA favorite and a must on hot summer days.

If you haven’t tried them already, pick-up one from us today and see why we’re pretty huge fans. But be warned, buy several because they’re seriously addictive….

Pop-up Book Store!

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Need to replenish your summer reading stock? Whether its for your kitchen, medicine cabinet, or just for pleasure reading by a body of water, our pop-up book sale this Saturday has your needs covered!

Stop by our pop-up tent out front of the store between 10AM and 3PM for great deals on titles that span the natural living world, from cooking to herbs to farming practices and more.

Happy reading!

LOCAL VENDOR OF THE MONTH // Natureflections Hemp Cards

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Natureflections greeting cards feature original photography by local photographer Elishewa Shalom and have been made from hemp & recycled paper since 2011.  Hemp fiber is a wonderful alternative to timber for paper, among many other uses​, and can help prevent further destruction of the world’s forests and pollution of water.

The goal of Naturefle​ctions is to help people appreciate the healing beauty of nature, as well as to grow the hemp paper industry by producing hemp paper products with purpose.  Artisan Hemp, a side research project, produces hemp paper on a small scale, made from Canadian and USA grown hemp.  Look out for new designs and products later this year!

CELEBRATE // National Pollinator’s Week!

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 This week, we celebrate the pollinators that are so vital to our ecosystems, food and survival.  Started 9 years ago by The Pollinator Partnership, we’re doing our part this National Pollinators Week  to highlight and share the importance of pollinators, including bees, birds, butterflies and bats, through in-store demos and giveaways.

Stay tuned to our Facebook page for chances to win bee-friendly prizes and to help protect our littlest neighbors!

GMOs, pesticides and other industrial farming practices are endangering our native pollinators, so use this week to educate yourself and pledge to make a small change to help protect these precious creatures. Learn more about actions you can take here!

Keeping it Natural on the Trail

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As a follow up to my “How to Successfully Disconnect” post from the other week, I wanted to elaborate on what I often pack up to get away when I go backpacking, camping, hiking or glamping (car camping). Even when I’m away for just a few days, I like to keep my staple food and good quality body care products with me in my pack if space and weight allow. Obviously, space can be limited if it’s a hike for a few days, so when I’m lucky enough to over pack a little, here’s what you’ll find in my pack:

  1. Sunscreen – Everywhere I go, I always have some with me. I use Badger primarily and I really really love their face sunscreen for every day use (even when I’m not camping).
  2. Toothpaste – Keeping it lightweight is easy with this Uncle Harry’s powdered toothpaste.
  3. Bug Spray – Again, I’m a huge fan of Badger’s bug spray and it works pretty darn well (although not against ticks. Bummer).
  4. First Aid – Mountain Rose is my go to for first aid balms like their Injur-Heal Balm and Comfrey Salve. It’s always better to have it on hand… just in case.
  5. Green’s Powder – Lightweight daily greens to mix with water in the morning. Those come in individual packets, or transfer some from the jar into a ziplock bag.
  6. Yes To Towelettes – Because when you’re sweating up a mountain all day, washing off your face/body in a crisp mountain stream isn’t always a feasible option.
  7. Lavender Essential Oil – Call me high maintenance, but this seriously helps drift off to sleep when the tent starts to collect unpleasant smells after a few days + the dog is joining us.
  8. Dry Shampoo – I usually just put a little of this in a small plastic bag and use after a couple of days go by without access to that elusive crisp mountain stream.
  9. KIND Nut Bars – For quick protein snacks on the trail.
  10. Organic Instant Coffee – Because that first sip of morning coffee when you’re camping is THE BEST feeling in the world.

All of these will find their way into my pack as I disconnect for a few days this week. As the beginning of summer is approaching, I knew it would be a good time to slip away and attend a retreat in southwestern VA centered on yoga, meditation, community and absolutely no phone, TV’s, radios or computers. A few days in a secluded mountain valley is usually what I crave all year long, so I’ve been looking forward to this disconnect trip for a while!

 

Lindsay Kluge M.Sc, CNS, LDN | HealthCoach@EllwoodThompsons.com

It’s Hemp History Week!

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We celebrate Hemp History Week to increase education around & our local farmers’ opportunities to grow this wonder plant.  From improving your health to providing greener building material options, this ultra-versatile plant can be used in thousands of ways! And yet, US farmers are not allowed to grow it because of dated laws that lump it into the illegal category (despite the fact it is THC-free and harmless.)

Join our efforts this week by educating yourself, your family and your friends on how hemp can make your body, our community, economy and environment better!

We’ve got in-store samplings of hemp products all week, from bars to seeds, oils to recipes. Plus, our friends from the Virginia Industrial Hemp Coalition will be here Wednesday, Thursday and Friday with samples and information about their efforts to legalize hemp farming in our state (and why it’s so important!)

Interested in learning more about the nutritional power-house are are hemp seeds and oil? Besides being the only seed to have the perfect ratio of Omega 3’s to Omega 6’s, they contain very digestible protein, lots of fiber, and much more.

Wrap up Hemp History Week with a bang as we invite folks from all over Virginia to join us for a screening  and panel discussion of Bringing It Home at the historic Byrd Theatre in Carytown, sponsored by VIHC, Hemp Dog Cafe.  This documentary tells the story of hemp: past, present and future and a global industry that includes textiles, building materials, food products, bio-plastics, auto parts and more.

Balancing Nutrition and Life with Ayurveda

As the seasons change, there is a clear shift in what is available locally in terms of fruits and vegetables, and there are also subtle shifts in our body that require a change in foods. In an ideal world, we would all eat with the seasons, from local sources with ample time to prepare each and every meal, and for many people this is not a feasible or available option. However, the are LOTS of ways that we can make subtle shifts to our diets and lifestyle as the year progresses that can help to balance our body with appropriate nutrition for our personal dosha, or constitution.

First, you can take the prakriti quiz to determine your overall dosha (also called Prakriti) and get an understanding of your constitution. Second, you can learn more about each dosha and what foods and lifestyle habits will best serve you long term and also seasonally. Third, take a look at some new recipes that will balance and support your body. Many of these recipes will be quite new to you, with unique cooking techniques and flavors, so keep an open mind. I find that Ayurvedic foods are by far some of the most nourishing and tonic foods out there, and by matching appropriate foods and cooking techniques with my dosha, I truly feel well nourished and more balanced on a daily basis.

Why Ayurveda?

I’ve been studying Ayurveda for about 5 years now, and although at first the concepts were quite new and (seemingly) time consuming, it quickly came to make so much sense for overall health. Ayurveda takes into account each individual body type, human energetic and lifestyle to weave together a personalized health plan that, eventually, becomes a lifestyle rather than just a diet or short term health change. This is quite different from what we may be accustomed to in the Western world, where people want quick fixes, short term diets and immediate results. Practicing Ayurveda is a commitment, both to your health and to your lifestyle.

To be honest, the best way Ayurveda has served me is that it required me to make time for the things that are most important to my survival: cooking, self care, exercise/movement and digestive health. When people “don’t have time” for these things, they are usually living a reactively toxic life. Ayurveda emphasizes nutrition heavily, and taking time to prepare whole food meals that are simple, balancing and vegetable rich. It emphasizes self care rituals which are usually the first thing people sacrifice in order to fit more commitments into their day. Ayurveda emphasis movement and exercise (not necessarily by going to the gym) to keep the body strong and the digestive system stimulated. It emphasis overall digestive health which is KEY to maintaining long term health and a strong immune system. Your body takes time to tend to, and making time for that will keep you alive and happy longer. Pretty simple.

Banyan Botanicals is an excellent resource for people to begin their journey to learn more about the benefits of Ayurveda and try new foods and recipes. I would recommend committing about 14 days to these new practices at first and see which ones really resonate with you. You can always start slow, even one new food or recipe a day, or 15 minutes for a new self care ritual like dry skin brushing, oil pulling, massage with appropriate oils or movement/exercise. If you’d like to learn even more about how you can incorporate some of these practices into your daily life, email me for a health coaching appointment and we can get specific about how Ayurveda can support your lifestyle, one step at a time!

 

Lindsay Kluge M.Sc, CNS, LDN | HealthCoach@EllwoodThompsons.com