2017 GOOD SAINT Holiday Gift Guide
The Holidays are here again and that means it's time for our yearly Holiday Gift Guide! This year I've compiled a list of gifts that I would LOVE to open up on Christmas morning - or any morning, let's be honest! Like some of the stuff you see here? All you have to do is share the link with your family members and make shopping that much easier on them. Every product on this list can be purchased online and can be shipped by Christmas (if that's your Holiday of choice!) so no searching through crowded stores or waiting in long store lines. I also included discount codes for you guys when I could - because who doesn't love a good deal?! I'm a real believer in all the things on this list and have tried every single one myself. If you're interested, you can also check out our gift guides from Holidays past: 2013, 2014, 2015, and 2016, or head over to our SHOP for signed cookbook copies. Let's open some presents!
1. Canopy Verde Greenpoint Vegan Convertible Backpack
THIS BAG. You guys - I've been wanting a backpack-style bag for so long now. The 90s are back and so are those adorable black leather bags! Lucky for all of us, my fave bag brand Canopy Verde has released their Greenpoint Vegan Convertible Backpack just in time for the Holidays and its is THE CUTEST. I'm totally obsessed! It's got all the functionality and comfort of a backpack, with the cute faux leather straps and roomy interior - but has the option of converting into an easy-carry, oversize tote for work or play. I never take it off! I love that I can easily switch from a shoulder bag to an easy carry side tote without having to change anything. And the navy + black style goes with almost everything I wear! Their most popular bag style, it is available in navy, olive, indigo, and stone. And because it's the Holiday season, you can get 10% OFF your order with code: AMBER10. PLUS, when you spend $175, you'll get their chic Carroll Cutch free! The Carroll clutch is a classic foldover clutch made with organic cotton and vegan leather. Makes a great gift - or keep it for yourself! SHOP NOW
2. Cards Against Humanity - The Period Pack
If you haven't played Cards Against Humanity yet, I'll assume you've been living under a rock. It's the most fun, most outrageous and unfiltered game of word and sentence association and it is amazing. I've played with everyone from close friends to my mother-in-law and it's always a good time. These cards are uncensored in the best way - and the Period Pack is no exception. Full of feminine wordplay and menstrual persiflage, this pack will bring hormonal tears of joy to your favorite lady - and it even comes with a wrapped, heart-shaped chocolate, just in case you need it. I thoroughly enjoyed the cleverness of both the cards and the packaging. It's been a rough year for ladies and vaginas in general - but this was a high note in an otherwise crummy year full of pussy jokes. SHOP NOW
3. LL Bean Sweater Fleece Pullover Hoodie
Okay - I already own this. In full disclosure, my sister bought me this for Christmas this year and I ripped into early and have been loving it and keeping cozy ever since! It's the perfect amount of soft & comfortable and makes layering a breeze. I'm a Mainer and have been wearing LL Bean for years - so I can attest to the high quality and incredible return policy. As someone who officially owns three different versions of this fleece, I think the addition of the hood is the best! It keeps your ears nice and toasty, and these new color combos they've come out with are so cute! I'm loving the orange - and this fleece totally matches my snow boots! SHOP NOW
4. LEVO Oil Machine
When I first heard about the LEVO Oil machine I was totally intrigued; a machine that allowed you to create any custom infused oil, at home, with all the conveniences of a countertop coffee pod maker - but easier, cleaner, and sleeker than any other model on the market. Maybe you're wondering, "What kind of infusions could I possibly make?" And friends - the list is so, so long. As a yoga instructor I see value in this machine beyond food infusions, as a tool to help me create my own custom massage oils for practice and teaching. As someone with a love for cooking, I see unlimited infusion possibilities. Everything from garlic-infused olive oil and vanilla-infused vodka to cannabis-infused coconut oil and cinnamon-infused maple syrup. If you can cook with it, you can infuse it! The machine uses controlled heat and time are used to transfer the flavor, scent, color, and nutrients from a variety of ingredients into the carrier of your choice. And it's now sold in 4 colors - but I am LIVING for that rose gold! Use code GOODSAINT to get $10 OFF your LEVO infuser! SHOP NOW
5. The Reversible Mat 3mm from Lululemon
I'm just obsessed with this mat. I've been using it for at least 6 months now and its my go-to for my everyday yoga practice. They make a slightly more cushioned 5mm version, but I've found this one being slightly smaller makes it perfect for all the traveling I do! It comes in a range of colors (I have one in Emerald Green from last season) and because it's two sided and reversible, is perfect for everything from sweaty hot yoga to a relaxing restore class. I rarely use the extra grippy side because the regular side - made with a polyurethane top layer that absorbs moisture - tends to be grippy enough, but I love the option in my sweatier, slipperier classes! Whenever I need another mat, I'd buy this one again for sure! SHOP NOW
6. Homestyle Vegan Cookbook
I'm not one to push a lot of stuff on you guys, but if you don't already own it and you're looking for a great Holiday gift, my cookbook can still make it to you in time! It's stuffed with 80 original, cozy, comforting dishes - each with a full-page color photo - that'll remind you of what Mama used to make...only healthier! Plus, it's 34% OFF on Amazon right now! SHOP NOW
7. Hydroflask - 40 oz with Straw Lid
We love our Hydroflask bottles and snack containers for iced and hot drinks and for taking warm breakfasts or lunches on the go. We each have a 32 oz bottle with a wide mouth lid, plus a 12 oz and 16 oz snack container and we are literally constantly using them. Now that I'm teaching yoga, having a larger amount of water and an easier way to grab a quick sip would be helpful, so I'm hoping Santa sneaks one of these babies under my tree - I love it in white! SHOP NOW
8. Native AP Mercury Lightknit Shoes
I've worn my current pair of Native sneakers almost to death. They're the most comfortable shoes I own! I bought them just before our Honeymoon to Europe and ended up walking at least 20 miles a day in them. I never got blisters and the materials are so incredibly light and breathable that you can wear them with or without socks. The I can't wait to order my next pair and love the look of these mercury lightknits! They're clean, sporty, and I'm sure just as crazy comfortable. Plus, they're vegan! SHOP NOW
9. Square Organics Protein Popcorn
I think Square Organics is making some of the best, most innovative, plant-based protein-packed snacks out there right now. They already have an 8-flavor line of SUPER yummy protein bars, and this year they released a line of cashew crisp bars that are like a healthy rice krispies. They're SO yummy! On top of that, they also dropped a line of protein popcorn this year. Let that sink in - snacking on popcorn AND getting a healthy serving of plant-based protein? HECK YES! It comes in three flavors - sweet, spicy, and salty and while I'm a sucker for plain salted, I think the spicy is a gift from the gods. You can use code GOODSAINT to get 20% OFF + FREE SHIPPING on their website! SHOP NOW
10. Healthade Holiday Cheers Kombucha
If you follow me on IG, you know I'm always preaching about probiotics! If you love someone, give them the gift of happy belly bacteria! I know it sounds weird, but I promise - they'll thank you. Plus, it tastes great! Healthade is an incredible company that still brews small batch kombucha in glass jars right here in LA. I love that they're committed to keeping it real and keeping their flavors creative - like this warm, cozy Holiday Cheers flavor! Stay tuned and give us a follow on IG - we're hosting a giveaway with them next week! In the meantime, find your favorite flavor and order a 6-pack on their website! SHOP NOW
11. CorePower Yoga Gift Card
You guys know that I LOVE Corepower Yoga! I got certified in both 200-hr Power Yoga and Yoga Sculpt this year and have nothing but positive things to say about my experiences. I'm made tons of friends and learned an incredible amount - my practice has gotten so much stronger. I still take class ay my home studio at least 4 days a week! They're having an great sale right now, so if you've been thinking about checking out a class - or just want to stock up on some new yoga gear - grab yourself a gift card! Right now, you can get a $100 gift card for just $80. That's a steal! SHOP NOW
Infusing with Levo OIL - Review + Recipe
If you've hung out here for awhile, you know I love making my own Holiday gifts AND things that save me time and money. I'm a girl who loves a good deal! We've made a couple fun Holiday crafts on the site (see our Homemade Cookies in a Jar, Thanksgiving Centerpieces + 2-Ingredient Christmas Ornaments), but today we're talking about infusing your own oils at home, how to use them for yourself and friends, and the incredible new machine that helps you do it more easily than ever before. I'm obsessed!
When I first heard about the LEVO Oil machine I was totally intrigued; a machine that allowed you to create any custom infused oil, at home, with all the conveniences of a countertop coffee pod maker - but easier, cleaner, and sleeker than any other model on the market. Now maybe you're thinking "What kind of infusions could I possibly make?" And friends - the list is so, so long. As a yoga instructor I see value in this machine beyond food infusions, as a tool to help me create my own custom massage oils for practice and teaching. As someone with a love for cooking, I see unlimited infusion possibilities. Everything from garlic-infused olive oil and vanilla-infused vodka to cannabis-infused coconut oil and cinnamon-infused maple syrup. If you can cook with it, you can infuse it! The machine uses controlled heat and time are used to transfer the flavor, scent, color, and nutrients from a variety of ingredients into the carrier of your choice. The possibilities are nearly endless!
If you've done your own infusions before, you know that process is often time consuming, messy, and often fills your house with whatever smell you're cooking with for DAYS - which can sometimes be fine (think vanilla) and can sometimes be a problem (think marijuana). The old method often involved using a crock pot to keep a low, constant heat for hours or days until the desired infusion was reached. It took too long and was inconsistent. Plus, you had to have a crock pot! Then you were stuck making large batches just to make all of the work worth it, and you still had to strain the cloves or flowers or herbs from your oil once you were done. With the LEVO, it couldn't be easier! When you pull the machine from the box one of the first things you'll notice is just how sleek and counter-friendly the design of this machine is. It's no bigger than your standard Keurig, with a digital, touch-responsive keypad for adjusting everything from the power and lock buttons to the time and temperature of your infusion. The parts are all easily removed and dishwasher safe for easy cleaning, which is always a plus. The machine comes with a a small pod for fitting your infusing item - flower, herb, nut, fruit or root - and a small herb press for packing the herb (what we used) into the pod. Since their release, LEVO has since released a larger, double-sized pod for heavier infusions and a silicon pod press for pressing the last of the oil from your pod post-infusion (both items available on their website).
We've used the LEVO several times now, and the process is incredibly simple. Simply pack the metal mesh pod with your herb of choice - we used marijuana for the infusion in these photos. How much will depend on your personal preference, but for this particular infusion we used 2 grams of Utopia Farms C. Banana Strain Cannabis Flowers infused into 1 cup of Primal Kitchen Extra Virgin Avocado Oil. The flowers contain about 25%-30% THC. This combination means that for every tablespoon of oil, there should be about 36 mg of THC. Good to know if you're dosing! If you're using something like garlic or lavender flowers to infuse, it becomes more about how potent you want the flavor and smell to be and less about dosage.
Figuring out how long and how hot to infuse for can be tricky. Luckily LEVO has an incredible calculator right on their website, so it was easy for me to figure out that our infusion should be set at about 180-200 degrees F for about 2.5 hours. They have clickable options for all kinds of infusion situations, so you should be able to find the setting you need. After that it's easy peasy! Simply pack your pod, place it inside the oil reservoir - its magnetized! - and then pour in your oil or base. Close the lid, and use the keypad to lock the machine and choose the length and temperature of the infusion. Then wait! When the infusion is finished, simply dispense your infusion into a sealable container like a glass jar. Remove the used parts and throw them in the dishwasher. That's it!
LEVO Oil has made the infusion process one of ease, and this chef totally approves. I can see endless possibilities for what we'll make with the LEVO, and have plans for lots of homemade Holiday gifts using the machine. We love the people behind the company, who very much believe in knowing what you're putting into your body and supporting consumers so that they can be self-sufficient and successful. Interested in how you can play with the LEVO Oil? Check out their website for more info + to shop their NEW colors! And don't forget - use code GOODSAINT to get $10 off your LEVO infuser!
Want to learn more about cooking with infused oils? Click the link below to download a simple Thanksgiving recipe that'll have you celebrating Danksgiving, instead! (Don't worry - it's a very small dose. And if you like, you can always just make the most delicious garlic-infused butter or ghee instead.) Happy Thanksgiving!
WEDDING MEAL PREP with VEESTRO
As most of you probably know, we just got married! After 8 years of being in love and putting up with eachother's weird habits, we finally did it. It was so wonderful, and so fun - but the lead up was truly awful. The amount of stress near the end sent me into a anxiety attack - I wouldn't wish wedding planning on anyone...ha! I'm kidding, mostly. I should've hired more help. The one thing that saved my sanity the week before the wedding might've just been these Veestro meals; This is a sponsored post but all thoughts and opinions expressed are my own. Veestro is a plant-based, organic meal delivery service that offers meal packs, juice cleanses and dishes a la carte on it's website. They have several different types of meal packs, including a 21-day kickstart, protein pack and lunchbox pack. I was excited to check out their unique Wedding Prep pack, which normally comes with lunch and dinner for 30 days, for either one or two people. We tried just a 5-day version, but it was so nice to have the option of NOT cooking the week of our wedding! All of the meals are clearly labeled, so I was easily able to avoid the dishes with soy, and the offer gluten-free dishes as well.
The meals are actually quite affordable, starting at $7-8 per meal, and a decent sized portion at that. The meals are shipped on dry ice straight from the prep kitchen here in Southern California. I loved that they came frozen because it gave us the option of picking and choosing, and if you ordered a larger pack - the full wedding pack with 30+ meals, for example - would allow you to save fridge space as you took out and defrost the meals one at a time. We don't own a microwave, so we had to make sure to take our meals out the night before to defrost before reheating the next day, which was the only downfall for us. That said, we were impressed that all of the packaging was either recyclable or compostable ad BPA-free and it stayed frozen, even after sitting on our front step for a few hours.
The meal variety was awesome, though I forgot to tell them I was allergic to soy (I'm still getting used to it!), so more than half of the meals we received became Alex-only meals. He didn't seem to mind! And he really, really loved them. Here's the full list of meals we received: Morccan Melange, Beluga Lentil Braise, Veggie Empanadas, Veggie Lasagna, Spinach Pie, Country Fried Chick'n, Thai Chick'n Stew, Roasted Beet + Kale Salad, Indian Kamut Stew, Portobello Steak Dinner and Raspberry Cheezecake. Alex's faves ended up being the Empanadas, Country Fried Chick'n, and Cheezecake, and I liked the Lentil Braise and Indian Stew next. Next time we order, we'll try different options - there are a bunch to choose from!
These meals are perfect for vegans and non-vegans alike, because the ingredients are simple, clean, and most important: recognizable! Yup, all the ingredients are real , whole foods - things I would cook with in my own kitchen. A lot of the meals come with sauces to spice them up, and it was easy to add our own fresh accents, like cilantro or parsley, when we wanted to make the meal feel a little more homemade. One of my favorite things about these meals were how fresh they actually tasted on their own - it didn't feel like we were being lazy or eating "frozen dinners". The meals were creatively and thoughtfully prepared with health and a real focus on vegetable in mind. Did I already mention there are NO preservatives? Because that's a pretty big deal. That's how you know it's fresh. I was especially thankful for the Wedding Prep pack because it took SO much stress off of me in the week before the wedding. So much less to deal with, plus we didn't want to buy many groceries just to be leaving on our honeymoon days later. Veestro made it easy! And if you're someone who's looking to stick to a lean, plant-based diet leading up to your big day, this may be the perfect option. To see all their menu options and meal packs, head over to Veestro.com!
Top 5 Vegan Finds at the 2017 Cannabis Cup!
Alex and I had the pleasure of attending our very first Southern California Cannabis Cup last weekend at the San Bernardino fairgrounds and had a total blast. We really didn't know what to expect and were pleasantly surprised when, after following respected magazine account High Times on instagram, we saw that tickets were reasonably priced. So we bought them! We arrived in the afternoon (the event went 3 pm to 11 pm) and got checked in pretty easily, barely bag searched, and sent in to get wristbands. Anyone could get in with a ticket, but to get into the sampling + smoking section, you had to have proof of your medical rec on you. After getting into the inner sanctum (and the sampling tents!) we started seeing similarities between this event and something like Expo West. It's basically the same idea - an expo of all the growers, sellers, and products hitting the market in one place, for people who consider themselves connoisseurs. There was everything from flower and bud to smoke, to crumble and shatter to dab, to edibles from every corner of the stoner culinary world - including some really great vegan ones! We scoured the show, taking the occasional dab and sucking down CBD water to stay hydrated, looking for the very best, newest vegan, GF, and better for you edibles at the show and found some really great ones. Scroll down for my list of the best in show - you may find yourself a new must-have treat!
1. Mary Jane Juice Co. Fresh-pressed Juices + Nut Milks
We found the Mary Jane Juice Co. nearly last at the show (pictured above 👆), but we're so glad we did! They had a sampling of at least 6 flavors at the show, but these two were the stand-outs for us; the 100 mg Vanilla Almond Milk and the 200 mg Ancient Healing Tea. They're both low-sugar, vegan, and totally raw, plus each packs a hearty cannabis punch to help sure whatever's ailing ya! The milk, smaller in dosage size, was $10 and the tea was $20, but it would also be more than one serving for most people. These drinks are packed with good-for-you-ingredients so you can reap the pain relief benefits of the drink along with the inherent nutritive value of the drink itself. They're guilt-free, great on the go, and taste great - no weird marijuana aftertaste. Find more info on their Instagram!
2. Cheef Naturals Chews + Super Fruit Bars
Okay guys, all terrible branding and racism aside (the name Cheef and their branding at the show -- white girls dressed as Native Americans -- realllllly needs to be reconsidered) these edibles are really phenomenal. They're one of the only edibles I've seen on the market with a focus on being super, super healthy. I'd tried their super fruit bars before and loved how they tasted like a raw, flax-y granola bar. The high was great too, but it just felt so nice to eat an edible that aligned with how I eat the rest of the time. The coconut caramel chews are a new product, very similar in texture to Cocomels, but infused with marijuana. And packing a hearty THC punch with 5 doses (100 mg) per chew! Find more on their products here.
3. Half Lit 25 mg THC Pops
These pops just get cooler and cooler! Not only do they taste great, pack a solid little punch, and are made with organic ingredients, but when you finish this pop you can recycle the stick by PLANTING it! It contains cannabis seeds, so when planted and watered will turn your trash into a big, beautiful plant. I love this idea! Such a clever way to cut waste and encourage recycling. Just make sure that if you plant the stick, you live in an area where you won't get in trouble if you get caught. Be smart friends. (Here in CA we are allowed to keep plants, but please check your laws before you plant anything! Duh. 😝) We picked up a pineapple and watermelon pop for later, and hope to start seeing these at more of our local dispensaries soon! Find out more about them here.
4. Zendo Infused Peanut Butter
This was one of my favorite product from the show, and maybe the one I'm most excited about for other people to try. It's literally just an infused peanut butter, which each packet 1 oz packet containing a 50 mg serving of THC (hybrid strains). It's the perfect healthy snack, literally containing just all natural raw peanuts and cannabis. With no added sugar or weird ingredients, this edible is perfect for people looking to stick to a specific diet or who have to eat healthfully because they're not well. Plus, it packs a great punch of protein! (If you have to do chemo and can't get a lot of food down, this may be a great option as well.) This same company also makes a similar single serving packet of coconut oil, perfect for eating raw or cooking with. I can't wait to slather this stuff all over my morning toast, add it to my smoothie, and make a soba noodle salad using this for the peanut sauce. It's so versatile! Find more at ZendoEdibles.com.
5. Cali Gold Genetics Cannabis Infused Body Butter
This booth caught our attention as we were walking by because they were one of the few advertising as a VEGAN product - which we loved, and of course stopped to check out. These body butters are made with quality, moisturizing ingredients like cupuacu butter, kokum butter, cannabis infused coconut and olive oils and vanilla infused jojoba oil, and rubs on super thick and emollient, but not greasy. There are 4 different types, all designed to alleviate pain, inflammation and irritation and to protect and nourish your skin. It's amazing stuff! I actually talked to the woman at the booth for awhile about my psoriasis and she explained that she actually started making these salves as an alternative to medicated psoriasis creams for her boyfriend. I've started using it on my psoriasis on my thighs and have been loving the results - super moisturized and no flaking! Find more about their salves other website here.
Juicero Organic Juice Press Review
If you haven't heard of Juicero yet, listen up - because this thing is AMAZING! I was sent one to review, but I wasn't compensated. I just love it! With my wedding quickly approaching (115 days people! 😬), I have been looking for a way to commit to my morning green drink routine, and have also been totally avoiding sugar. It's tricky business, and it can be hard when you're busy to commit to buying and hauling home enough produce to make a morning habit routine. Plus, my regular juicer has been on the fritz for months and cleaning it is such a pain in the butt - I avoid using it for that very reason. And that sucks!
Juicero is juicing made smarter - quite literally. This app-based juicer is clean, quick, and couldn't be easier to use. When the juicer came, it came wrapped in a big sturdy box. It was fun to open it and I immediately fell in love with how clean it was. All of the wrapping it came in - and ALL of the juice pack - are completely recyclable. That was a main concern of mine before starting, but I was reassured that all of the cardboard, paper and plastic used are 100% recyclable. Not perfect, but a fair trade for the convenience. The process from delivery of the machine to your first glass is juice is simple. Pre-selected packs you order online or through the app are delivered to your door in refrigerated, well wrapped packaging - again, totally recyclable.
We got a mix of organic juices over the few weeks including the Greens, Sweet Greens, Spicy Greens, Root Renewal, Granate Glow, and Beta Glow. My very favorite is the Spicy Greens - with a kick of jalapeño - for its flavor, and the fact that it only contains 12 natural sugars. Alex is more partial to the sweeter Beta Glow, but we've both been loving waking up and enjoying a glass before we eat breakfast. It gives me little more energy during my morning workout and helps to stave off my hunger for a little longer. It can be hard to get the full 5 cups of fruits and veggies recommended into your diet every day but drinking fresh, cold-pressed 100% juice is a great way to infuse a daily diet with more fresh fruits and vegetables - so if you're on the fence, this may be the perfect solution. Juicero has engineered the first home, cold-press juicing system that makes raw, organic juice at the touch of a button.
One of my favorite things about the Juicer really is all the technology; first, the packs all contain a QR code with information that the juicer reads at each press. It send info about the juice, what farm the produce was collected on, and when to enjoy your pack by right to your cell phone. Expired packs won't be pressed, so you'll never have to guess at the freshness of your packs. Sure you can't SEE the produce inside, but it come out tasting AMAZING! And actually CUTS DOWN on waste because of the lack of food scraps and ability of the packaging to all be recycled again. You can personalize your weekly orders so you're getting a different range of juices each week if you like. Then you just pop your pack in the press, press the button, and watch as your juice is delivered fresh from the Juicero to your glass. You can even open the package up and use the pulp, if that's your thang!
I have totally loved using the Juicero and will definitely continue use it - at about $7 a pack it costs me the same as going out and buying a green juice, but is absolutely more convenient. Plus, just this morning I saw they added a NEW Mini Greens flavor that I have to try. Juicero isn't available everywhere yet, but it will be soon - get more info + order at Juicero.com. Use code AP10 for 10% OFF!
**Full disclosure: I was given this product for FREE to review. I was not otherwise compensated in any way. All thoughts and opinions are my own.**
Brentwood Home - $275 Sleep Wellness GIVEAWAY!
Brentwood Home is a Los Angeles-based team of artisans and fabricators making some really healthy, comfortable, ethically-sourced products. I fell in love with them originally when I stumbled upon their meditation pillow and then got it for Christmas. It's filled with buckwheat husks and is seriously the most comfortable thing - it totally aligns my spine and has made me meditation practice something I actually look forward to! When they reached out about trying their all-natural pillows, I was SO down! Brentwood Home has been making home and bedding essentials in Los Angeles for over 30 years. From design to development to manufacturing, they handle it all. From natural latex to organic cotton, they make sure your home is taken care of. Think about it, friends – we spend about 1/3 of our lives in our BEDS! To me, it’s important that they’re as natural as possible. Many mattress and bedding companies use chemical fire retardants, phthalates, and heavy metals when manufacturing and processing their products. Those can’t be good to breathe in through the night, right? The good news is Brentwood Home doesn’t use any of them, and that makes me feel like I can sleep safe and sound. Even better? Their products have a 120-night sleep guarantee and a 25-year warranty! That's why I've teamed up with the folks at Brentwood Home for this awesome $275 Sleep Wellness bundle giveaway, with bedroom essentials that’ll change the way you sleep. Read on to win!
We all know that getting a good night's sleep is a necessity for boosting your mood and banishing under-eye circles, but did you know it can also improve your memory, help curb inflammation, keep a healthy weight, and can even help you live longer? Most of us aren't getting enough, and the sleep we get is disjointed and full of tossing and turning. If your pillows and mattress suck - and more often they do than don't - then it's time to upgrade! In this sleep wellness bundle, you’ll receive four pillows that will have you more excited than ever to jump into bed! Two Latex/ Kapok pillows are filled with all-natural latex ribbons that have a responsive feel that provides uplifting support, combined with a silky-smooth plant fiber called kapok. They’ll be the perfect fit for people who switch between multiple sleeping positions, as they easily mold to your neck and head. The cover is made of organic cotton, grown without toxic pesticides or fertilizers, so you can sleep safe and sound. The winner will also receive two Molded Latex Pillows that are bouncy, resilient, and molded to perfectly contour your head and neck. They’re made with healthy materials for your sleep, like a 100% organic cotton cover, and they’re certified free of synthetic materials by the Eco-institute. While Alex prefers the latex/ kapok combo, I've been seriously loving the next support of the molded latex version. It's so nice to have pillows we can BOTH finally enjoy!
Plus, I love that Brentwood Home keeps their production process as close to their home in California as possible. They operate their own factory, which gives them complete control over the production process. From design to development to manufacturing, everything they do is in-house and up to their own standards. By eliminating middlemen and shipping directly from their factory to the customer, they’re able to cut manufacturing costs and pass the savings on to you and me. I also love how much California inspires the actual design of their products. It’s clear in the neutral colors, modern design, and eco-friendly materials, plus almost everything is named after a West Coast staple or landmark. California has always been first in line when it comes to environmental regulation, implementing policies that are eventually followed by the rest of the country - nothing says California living like being green!
So, want to WIN these awesome pillows for yourself? You can enter by simply entering your email below! We'll choose a winner and email a winner on Wednesday, 2/8 - so be sure to check the email you provide! International entrants welcome. Good luck!
Whether you win or not, be sure to use Brentwood Home Discount Code OURHOME on your next purchase for 10% OFF!
At Home Water Test Kit Review + GIVEAWAY!
I grew up in Maine, where the water was clean, plentiful, and well-drawn. I was never afraid to take too long of showers, or tasted a weird aftertaste in my drinking water - I was blessed in childhood with a gift I didn't understand was a gift at all. As an adult living in a rapidly growing city, I am acutely aware of the facts surrounding water. There is not a ton of it, especially here, and what there is isn't always great for drinking. Glossing over the fact that many, many people do not have access to clean drinking water here, clearly. That being said, even those of us who can afford to pay for city water to get pumped in don't always get a great product - sometimes, it's not even something you recognize as water. Luckily, where we live now the city is pretty diligent and the water isn't TOO atrocious. Of course, you can still usually taste the contaminants and cleaners in the water, but at least that means they're trying to clean it. Right? It can be scary relying on the city or state to inform you of what's going on - remember Flint, MI? (Yeah, that's still happening. ) So be a conscientious citizen and check your drinking water for yourself!
We were sent the ultimate at-home water testing kit to try out from TestAssured, which includes 10 different water contaminant tests that are easy to administer and gives you results within 10 minutes for every test included - except bacteria, which takes 48 hours for full results. This one test kit includes all of the following water tests:
And guys- it couldn't have been easier. You just add a little water here, do a little shake there and BAM - the clear, color-coded charts will let you know what's in your drinking water! It works with well water, city/municipal water, tap, well water, residential drinking water, groundwater and spring water sources, and all of the tests are made right here in the USA. Plus, all of their products come with a 100% money back guarantee and they have GREAT customer service - they're been a joy to work with, and judging by the reviews on their website, they always are!
So how'd my city tap water fare? Actually - pretty okay! Better than I expected, for sure. The tests didn't look for fluoride, though I know our city water is definitely flouridated, but otherwise they showed that we were pretty good! Our alkalinity and pH are pretty out of whack, but otherwise I was pleased to see that our water isn't totally contaminant ridden. As you can see in the tests above, we were well within normal levels for things like chlorine, nitrogen and copper. Its actually a huge relief knowing that we've tested and seen for ourselves that the water isn't so icky. You can order a test for yourself here OR scroll down and enter your email to be entered to WIN a test for yourself! We'll pick a winner Friday, January 20th. International entrants welcome - because EVERYBODY deserves clean water. Good luck!
Dr. Raw Organics - Medicated Edibles Review
Okay, guys. This will quickly become one of those 'if you don't know, now you know' posts for a lot of you. And for some of you, it'll be more like uhm, duh! If you know me personally, it's probably the latter. Before I totally shock you with my grand exit from the green closet, let me just remind you that this is my choice. You can make yours. I am very pro-choice, and I want to offer these reviews both for people who may medically need the products and would like an honest review before they try 'em, and because medical marijuana is now legal is 28 states and DC and frankly, it seems like everybody's enjoying it. One more quick note - this is very much a safe space for questions and discussion, but no hate. I'm happy to indulge curiosity but never douchebaggery.
That said, I live in California, which was well known for it's Emerald Triangle long before last month's election. Weed, mary jane, marijuana cigarettes - whatever you call them, it's very available and widely accepted here. I've had my medical marijuana card for years to help with hunger and essentially help to break my battle with eating disorders. Seriously - it helped me calm down and get hungry enough to stop worrying, which is what I really needed to ultimately overcome my consistent binge/purge/starve cycle. While I will always stuggle with it, it's been a solid 6 years since I 've felt those really awfuly urges in full swing. And that is amazing for me.
If you're still reading, you're probably at least curious about self-healing with and exploration of marijuana. And I'm so glad, because it is such a great, natural alternative to prescritpion medications. (Obviously check wih a doctor before trying anything new!)
Besides increasing my hunger and appetite, marijuana helps me sleep more deeply, deal with aches, pains + PMS, and regulates my stress levels. I'm a big fan, but also understand that for many, including myself, smoking simply isn't the best or easiest option. Luckily, with states legalizing left and right, producers have gotten more creative with how to deliver to medicine to your system. Nope, you no longer have to smoke a joing or take a hit off a germy, passed-around water pipe to feel it, friends. You can eat, sip, suck, swallow and rub it on, instead! That sounded really innapropriate, but seriously - you can medicate just by sucking on a hard candy!
When I attended the Women GROW Conference in LA last month, I was lucky enough to meet (in-person!) several companies that are pioneering healthier, easier to enjoy edibles. Most companies are still making sugar-packed sweets like brownies, gummies, and cookies - so if you're actually very sick or simply are avoiding sugar, gluten or dairy, it can be tricky to find edibles that you know you will enjoy and that would leave you in a sugar crash three hours later. When I first met the folks at the Dr. Raw booth I was immediately interested. I could see right on the packaging that they were offering up some totally vegan, soy-free, gluten-free products -and even some that were sugar-free, too!
Dr. Raw Organics is based in Southern California and makes a range of products - both THC-based (the part of marijuana that makes you feel mentally stimlated - i.e. 'high'), and CBD-based (the part of the plant that is for purely pain relief. You'll get NO high from this.), so they have something for everyone. Their team of herbalists has been handcrafting organic, non-GMO edibles for over a decade, and they always potency test for consistent results you can trust. They make their own tinctures, balms, oils, hard candies and range of baked goods (not ALL are vegan), which you can peruse on their website. At the conference, they were whipping up fresh hard candies, and I immediatey loved how simple and yummy they were. Because they contain both THC + CBD, they offer more a hard-hitting pain relief. I have a pretty high tolerance - I usually ingest about 50 mg~ when I want to get 'high' or feel some serious pain relief. These hard candies start in 10 mg portions, so you can start small and without messing your entire day up. Of course, as with any new medication, prepare to be home the first day so you can see how your body reacts. Better safe than asleep on your desk at work!
I ended up getting a little care package sent to me from them later, since I was so in love with all of their vegan options! We've found some great vegan things at dispensaries before, but usually they're full of crappy ingredients, so I was so so happy to open it and find all of the goodies pictured here. We're tried the candy hearts, in multiple dosages, the 1:1 balm, and the raw bites. The 1:1 balm is a cocoa butter topical analgesic, great for aches and pains. It works much like arnica to help soothe the tender area and provide relief, and I love it for my sore neck, after yoga, and on any place that just feels not good - I slathered it all over my cracked fingers after my trip to Maine and it worked wonders - plus it smelled great!
The raw balls are a great option for more pain or in a case where you can really relax. They contain 50mg of THC per ball, so most people should start with half a ball or less. I can pop a whole one, but it definitely leaves me feeling sleepy and verrrrrry relaxed about 2 hours later. They are made with organic, gluten-free steel-cut oats, infused coconut oil, ground peanuts, cocoa powder, flax-seed, cinnamon and a touch of agave nectar. The small portion size gives you the perfect indulgence you crave, with just the right amount of medicine.
The butterscotch-flavored candy hearts are my favorite. So easy to just pop one in your mouth and very discreetly medicate! They are made using seasonal, certified organic fruit and veggie based flavorings and colorings, plus they come in two dosgae sizes. Each regular Candy Heart contains 10mg THC and 1mg CBD and there are 10 Hearts in a package – so 100mg total. Each 1:1 Candy Heart contains the perfect dose of 5mg CBD and 5mg THC, also containing the 100mg total as well.
Whether you're just getting interested in the medical cannabis industry or you just really love edibles, I highly recommend searching these guys out. They have a convenient product locator on their website and offer free samples to curious consumers. Dr. Raw Organics are offering some of the highest quality, certified tested products out there right now, and we love supporting a company like that. Visit them + get more info at DrRawOrganics.com and on their IG at @Dr.RawOrganics!
'Oh She Glows Every Day' Cookbook Giveaway!
As a new vegan 6 years ago I really struggled to find healthy, real-food recipes that weren't all tofu and brussels sprouts. The climate in the vegan world - and the online blogging world ALONE - has absolutely sky-rocketed in the last few years, but it used to be really bleak. Some of the first real recipes I found that totally enticed me were on Angela Liddon's site, Oh She Glows. Back then she was still doing a little treats business on the side, but now she's a powerhouse almost mom of two and cookbook author who is still regularly churning out drool-worthy recipes that make the rest of us look like absolute newbies. If you can't tell, I've got a mega- girl boss crush on Angela. She's got it together, works super hard, and manages to still absolutely kill it as a food blogger - she is #goals, guys!
Angela's recipes and food photography - both in the book and on her blog- are consistently on point. Every recipe comes out so well you can pretty much guarantee she re-worked the recipe 6 times making it perfect before you ever got there. And every photo is so crisp, clean, and well-thought out. Her book is a visual joy to look through and totally makes you want to get in the kitchen and whip up all of her creative, nourishing dishes. Some of the dishes on my to-make list are: Strawberry Oat Crumble Bars with Strawberry Vanilla Chia Seed Jam, Sun-Dried Tomato and Garlic Super-Seed Crackers, Golden French Lentil Stew + High-Rise Pumpkin Cupcakes with Spiced Buttercream Frosting (some pictured below)!
In OSG Every Day, Angela has managed to create an impressive follow-up to her last book with 100 new hearty plant-based recipes easy enough for the busiest of eaters to enjoy. And lucky for you, she's letting us give away one her books to one very lucky WINNER! We're so excited to share this book with you, because it is such a solid addition to collection - whether you are a new or experienced cook. You can scroll down to enjoy some of the incredible photos from the book and to enter our giveaway to win a copy of the book for yourself. Entry details below, as well.
You've made it to the giveaway! Simply follow the instructions on the widget below to enter. We will randomly select and email a winner when the contest ends. Entrants from the US and Canada only, please. Good luck!
-Reprinted from Oh She Glows Every Day by arrangement with Avery, a member of Penguin Group (USA) LLC, A Penguin Random House Company. Copyright © 2016, Glo Bakery Corporation.
-Food photos credited to Ashley McLaughlin and lifestyle photos/headshots credited to Sandy Nicholson. The cover photo is credited to Angela Liddon.
ZOKU Review + $70 Prize Pack GIVEAWAY!
Summer's just about over - unless you also live in Southern California where it be HOT until at least Halloween. Ugh. But that, my friends, is exactly why we're here with a fantastic giveaway! To boost your spirits, cure your sweet tooth and get you back into that mid-summer vacation feeling. We got you.
I used to work as a nanny and the family that I worked for had ZOKU pop makers in the freezer that the kids LOVED. I used them all the time to keep the kids entertained but never really realized just how cool they really are. They come in all kinds of cute and creative shapes and designs and the Single Quick Pop Maker - pictured above! - can have a frozen-solid popsicle in your hand in literally minutes flat. These products are not only durable and made of high quality materials, they whip up sweet treats in seconds - which is perfect for both impatient kiddos and adults with a raging sweet tooth. I love the versatility of ZOKU's products and how, like me, they HATE waiting for food! ?They offer a range of quick treat makers for popsicles, slushies and cold beverages - something for all your icy treat needs!
Because we're such big fans, we teamed up with ZOKU for a fun end of summer giveaway. You can enter alllll the way at the bottom of the page to win $70 worth of ZOKU goodies including their Single Quick Pop Maker, Ice Cream Maker + Chocolate Station!
Seriously - these products are so easy. You just store the chillable bowl and pop maker base in the back of your freezer to chill overnight. Once cold, remove them anytime and pour in your desired ingredients! With the ice cream bowl you use a long, flat spoon to scrape and spoon the ice cream mixture around until it firms up. I like mine a little soft so I ate mine before it totally froze, but Alex later made some killer strawberry ice cream that froze up really nicely and was ready in about 10 minutes. With the pop maker you literally just pour juice, milk, or whatever other liquid into the mold and let it freeze - about 5 minutes and you'll have a totally frozen creation!
The chocolate station lets you have fun and get creative with toppings, my favorite part. You can of course use it to drizzle chocolate, or butterscotch, caramel, melted coconut butter - whatever you can think of, really! I love whipping up something healthy and sweet with fresh fruit when I am craving some sugar but don't want to overdo it. Having to wait just a few minutes before its ready usually helps me to make the healthier option rather than just munching whatever snack is in the cabinet. And we've made some REALLY delicious things on the fly - my fave is probably coconut yogurt mixed with fresh strawberries and maple syrup and mixed into a frozen yogurt. YUM! At this point I KNOW you want your own set to play with - if you don't you crazy. But I still like ya. Scroll down and enter for your own ZOKU prize pack!
You made it to the giveaway! For the record: I was given these products, but not compensated and all thought and opinions are honest and my own. I fucking love this stuff. So, US entries only please. Winner will be randomly selected and alerted via email when the contest ends. Good luck!