Page 1




EASY FITNESS AT HOME for your healthiest spring yet!

3 WAYS TO FLORAL spring into your new wardrobe

PLANTING WITH PURPOSE resourceful creativity in the garden


HAPPINESS from the inside out

SPRING CLEANING our checklist to make it easy!

Betsy & Bill West Contact U s

Office: 724-222-6550 ext. 6206 Cell: 724-747-9703 Email:

Planting with Purpose Page 10 2


C O N T home & lifestyle

health & beauty

E N T S Fashion

08. MANNERS MATTER-rasing polite kids with Joie Miller.

18. SPRING MAKEUP TRENDS- with Magalis Griffiths.

26. SPRING STAPLES- a look at your closet must-haves for this new season!

10. PLANTING WITH PURPOSEresourceful creativity in the garden!

20. EASY FITNESS AT HOME- try this step by step exercise routine from the comfort of your home!

40. 3 WAYS TO FLORAL- wondering how to rock that floral trend? We have you covered.

28. SPRING CLEANING- with a checklist to make it easy! 32. RECIPES- add something fresh to your menu!

48. THE MIRACLE OF WATER- with Ashley Geidel.

faith & inspiration

16. EXPLORING ENTREPRENEURSHIP- get inspired to make big things happen with Terri Dowd. 36. HAPPINESS FROM THE INSIDE OUT- learn how joy is more than a feeling with Joie Miller. 44. A GREATER PURPOSE- a powerful story of selfless love. 46. HOW TO STAY IN JOY, HEALTH, AND STRENGTH- make this a new season with Adalis Shuttlesworth.





f ro m t h e



Welcome to the spring edition of The Elle Journal, “Happy, Healthy, & Strong”! In this edition, we are focusing on wholeness. Did you know that you can live every day from a place of wholeness? There is not one area of your life in which you have to succumb to defeat. God’s desire is for you to be healthy in your body, prosperous in your soul, and strong in your spirit. There is nothing like the feeling that you are thriving rather than just surviving. It’s the difference between existing and truly living! Often, we are waiting for some outside factor to change before we can be happy. We are surrounded by excuses as to why it’s too hard to

be healthy, and we may have let life tell us that we are not strong; this all changes at this moment! You, together with the strength of God, hold the key. You are in charge of today, tomorrow, and the rest of your life. Realize that happiness, health, strength, and, ultimately, wholeness isn’t something that happens as a result of an outside experience. Wholeness begins from the inside out. So no matter what your life has looked like up until this moment, choose now to begin a new journey and accept nothing less than to thrive! Congratulations on a life of happiness, health, and strength one day, one decision, one step at a time!

Happiness from the Inside Out page 36



R AISING POLITE KIDS WRITTEN BY: Joie Miller FOLLOW: @joiemiller Manners are more than just about minding your p’s and q’s. In a society where disrespect and selfishness seem to be on the forefront, it’s more important than ever to raise your kids with manners. Manners signify a culture of honor and respect. If you teach your children to be polite, they will stand out among their peers, have more opportunity and favor with adults and people of authority, and create a lifestyle of humility and thankfulness. It’s important to instill manners from day one. As soon as they began to talk, we started training our children to say please and thank you. Even before they could talk, I remember teaching them to use sign language in order to say please and thank you. Instilling good manners in your children will set a standard of honor and respect in your household. Just like my husband and I have been quick to correct bad attitudes or back talk with our children, manners set an equal atmosphere of respect. Kids do what you do, not what you tell them to do. With that in mind, I have always used manners with my kids. I never yell a command or directive without saying please or thank you. When you start reinforcing manners in your home it creates a space filled with honor. Even though they are my children and would obey me if I told them to do something, they understand that I honor them by saying please and thank you. In return, they (almost) always reciprocate the honor I show them through their own polite expressions of please and thank you.

MANNERS matter 8

Manners create an awareness of gratitude. In a selfish world, the simple words “thank you” carry a lot of weight! Taking a second to express gratitude will be a priceless gift you can instill in your children. Most teen and adolescent depression in the world today stems from parents who have centered their lives completely around their child. The child then becomes accustomed to everything being about them. They focus only on their own desires and needs, completely oblivious to the outside world, thereby losing their sense of purpose and leading to feelings of depression. A thankful child is a happy child. Train your child in simple manners such as letting someone else go first, opening the door for an adult, expressing gratitude when opening gifts, and thanking

their guests for attending a party. It’s healthy to teach your kids to operate in thanksgiving. As they begin to operate in gratitude and to release kindness to others, it will actually build up their self- esteem, and they will feel better about themselves. Remember, thankful equals happy! Manners teach humility. Learning to operate in humility and understanding authority will set your child up for success. The simple act of looking an adult in the eyes when they are speaking, responding to, “ How are you?” with, “Fine, how are you?”, and even answering with a, “Yes, ma’am” or “No, sir” are integral in teaching your child life lessons. Understanding that they are the child and that there is a standard of respect and teachability that they must carry for those around them will make them more respected by others. Having a teachable spirit will foster a good moral base and open doors of opportunity before them. There is nothing worse than an unruly, arrogant child or teenager. Unfortunately, it’s usually the lack of training from the parent that is to blame. I have used a game called “conversation ping pong” to train my kids in engaging in conversation with adults. Over a meal, I’ll ask the child a question, and they have to respond back to me, looking me in the eyes, with a response other than “yes” or “no”. This game has been great in setting them up for success. After all, it can be intimidating for children to carry on a conversation with an adult. Also, it’s important to never disrespect authority in front of your child! It may be hard to zip your lip, but it’s important to teach them how to respond to authority in the correct way, even when they disagree. This protects their hearts while teaching them the importance of staying in a place of honor. Protecting their hearts and attitudes towards teachers, coaches, and future bosses will be something that they will definitely thank you for one day! Manners matter! Whether your child is just learning to talk or has grown into a teenager, manners play an integral part in instilling godly morals into their lives as well as teaching them profitable life lessons.



WRITTEN BY: Joie Miller FOLLOW: @joiemiller 10



Lavender will need full sun & well drained soil. Try it on fish, poultry, dressings, beverages, baked goods, & desserts. Be sure to strip from the stalk before using!

Flower pots can do more for your patio than just add color and beauty. There are several uses for the flowers in your garden - some flowers are even edible! You may be surprised to learn that you are most likely already enjoying some edible florals such as cauliflower, broccoli, and artichokes! Last summer, I became completely obsessed with lavender. The delicate purple stems looked great in our farmhouse, so I planted them everywhere! The fragrance was amazing, and I loved taking my scissors out and creating fresh bouquets for the house. Lavender can be added to recipes, dried as potpourri, used for dry skin, and even used to help heal a burn! Get creative with your planters this year. Take an afternoon to grab a coffee and stroll around a local greenhouse. Give your flower pots purpose by choosing flowers that you can use in multiple ways, even in your food! Being resourceful is fun and lends to creativity!


Roses will need full sun with light shade & well drained soil. Use them to flavor honey, make rose petal jam, and flavor beverages. The flavor will vary, so be sure to taste it first!



Roses 13


GARDENING 101 tips to get started

Nothing is more rewarding than going out to pick fruit and veggies for dinner from your own garden. You may not think you have a green thumb, but before you call it quits, check out some of these simple gardening tips! You don’t have a lot of yard space? CREATE A CONTAINER GARDEN ON YOUR BACK PORCH OR DECK. It is as simple as purchasing a large container and adding garden soil! Choose a location on your patio with lots of sun. If you have mostly shade, add wheels to the bottom of your container. This allows mobility to move the plants into the sun for a few hours. This method of gardening is easy, and placing the containers on a porch or patio close to your home cuts down on animals nibbling away at your fruits & veggies! MAKE SURE YOUR FLOWER CONTAINERS HAVE HOLES IN THE BOTTOM FOR PROPER DRAINAGE. Don’t be limited by the plain and traditional garden pots, get creative! Let your imagination go and choose non-traditional planters. You can make a planter out of a bird bath, a beverage container, anything that has depth and a hole in the bottom. If that pretty aluminum container doesn’t have a drain, get out your hand drill and create a few holes in the bottom. Make sure you drain. Too much saturation could be the culprit that is destroying your beautiful plants!


Make compost from egg shells, coffee grinds, and apple cores. Compost creates rich, nutrient filled soil in which your plants will thrive. It is also fun to give purpose to your old trash! Compost is a great alternative to some of the expensive soil mixes. Before you buy designer soil, try compost! MAKE SURE YOU ARE PLANTING IN THE CORRECT SEASON. Certain flowers and vegetables do better at certain times of the year. Late Summer: Carrots, cauliflower, broccoli, and spinach Winter: Onion, garlic, spinach, beans, peas, and asparagus Fall: Radish, cabbage, kale, carrots, brussels sprouts Spring: Arugula, beets, broccoli, cabbage, carrots Summer: Corn, cucumber, gourds, peppers, pumpkins, tomatoes, sweet potatoes

PRUNE Take time to prune and cut back your plants and pull the dead petals off of those flowers. It will keep them healthy and vibrant! How do you know when to prune? Any wilted or dead flowers or stems can get pulled right off. Eliminating the dying stems and petals will promote a healthier plant. Look up your plants; get to know them so you can understand how to care for them best!

Easy starter garden These plants are great for beginners and are used in a lot of the food we eat every day. They also make for an easy beginners garden! If you are feeling ambitious, you can plant in seed form. A short cut approach is to go to your local greenhouse or lawn care center and purchase these plants already sprouting and ready to go. Make sure you account for the growth when planting. Zucchini and tomatoes need a lot more space once they take off in fruitfulness. Also, make sure your tomatoes have a stake or stick for support, or they will grow upward and become top heavy. Tomatoes Peppers Cucumber Lettuce Zucchini Herbs Herbs are an easy and resourceful garden starter. You can plant herbs in pots in your window sill or you can mix them with your florals on your front porch. Not only are herbs tasty, but they are also fragrant and pretty.


WHAT IS ONE PIECE OF ADVICE YOU WOULD GO BACK AND GIVE YOURSELF WHEN YOU WERE FIRST STARTING OUT? I would tell myself, “Your time is worth money.” In the beginning, most entrepreneurs do work for free. For me it was a matter of wanting to prove my process would work before they paid me. I would think, “Wait a second, I just gave away my services and my secret sauce in an attempt to get paid.” It took me over a year to put a price tag on my services. AS A MOM, HOW DID YOU BALANCE STARTING YOUR OWN BUSINESS AND MEETING THE NEEDS AND DEMANDS OF YOUR FAMILY?

EXPLORING ENTREPRENEURSHIP with Terri Dowd, founder of WythU

Floral PAGE 40

Prioritizing and time management. What is important? Work always came after my kids’ needs. I struggled with this for a while, being on the phone during a game or having the kids sit quietly while I had a meeting. As soon as I started making money, I hired a cleaning lady! You just have to prioritize and decide what you can do where you are to make it work. Whether that’s hiring a cleaning lady or even getting your mom or a friend to help out with your kids a few hours a week so that you can focus, just do what you need to do to maximize the time that you have! WHAT WERE YOUR GREATEST LEARNING LESSONS FROM STARTING YOUR OWN BLOG AND BUSINESS?

FOLLOW: @parmesanprincess

Terri Dowd is a powerhouse. If you were to sit with her and bounce ideas off of her regarding marketing or business or even life, you would leave feeling inspired and full of ideas for how to grow and expand your reach. She is the CEO of WythU and has been a successful food blogger and TV host. Her blog, The Parmesan Princess, is known in Pittsburgh as one of the premier food blogs, so Terri knows her stuff! We recently sat down with Terri to discuss her business and thoughts on being an entrepreneur. So, whether you’re a stay at home mom with a side hustle, a business owner, or you are looking for ways to make your passion produce, Terri’s advice is golden!


WHAT WOULD YOU SAY ARE THE MOST IMPORTANT QUALITIES OF AN ENTREPRENEUR? 1) Passion for your business. With passion and heart, it doesn’t feel like work! 2) Educating always. No matter how successful a business is or how much it seems figured out, there is always something to learn to better the business operations or the product or service. Keeping up with innovation can be the difference between a business accelerating forward and going out of business. 3) Helping others. I know this sounds like a beauty queen answer, but in my business, I am working to help my clients be successful and helping those who work for me do well and prosper in their families. It all comes full circle and feels great. WHAT LED YOU TO WANT TO START YOUR OWN BUSINESS? As a stay at home mom, I had to work when I had time. Being my own boss allowed me this flexibility. Also, I was up for the challenge. HOW DID YOU TURN SOMETHING THAT YOU WERE PASSIONATE ABOUT INTO SOMETHING THAT PRODUCED FOR YOU?

By starting my own blog, I realized there was an audience that wanted to know what I had to say and try my recipes. This blew my mind because the whole concept of a blog is stating your opinion and telling your stories. I thought, “Who really wants to hear from me?” But, there was enough there to be a business. I found an amazing group of friends in the Pittsburgh blogger world, and we helped each other reach new audiences. The cooking TV show came naturally and really was it’s own business as well. The business model was selling sponsors to actually pay to produce the episodes and they would air on different TV stations in each market. With WythU, my company today, I learned delegation. People are a major component of any successful business. With the right team, a business will be successful. I struggled to find the right people early on. I trusted and believed in people who turned out to not be a good fit. Now, I spend more time developing people and caring for their needs within the day to day operations. All three of my businesses grew organically. A random phone call from Good Morning America and a few chance meetings at local events changed everything. I realize this was and is God’s hand. Only when I try to figure it out myself do things get hairy and feel out of control. Copy that for life.

To me, passion breeds success. Having faith in my God-given abilities is key. The confidence that brings allows me to not think too hard or put it all on me. I prepare, do my homework, show up and see where the path goes. This was so hard for me! Initially I tried to figure it all out, to control every conversation and decision. Now, I let God guide me.







ave you ever wondered where makeup trends begin? Wonder no more, my friend- they start on the runway! New York Fashion Week is the center of all things fashion and makeup. Last year, there were trends that were scary and some that I think you will love! Here are my top 4 picks. Enjoy!

#1. GLASS SKIN Bright and vibrant skin is all the rage. This makeup trend started in Korea in 2013 and has made it over to the good old US of A. Perfect for those of you who love skin care; prepping the skin is foundational when trying to achieve this look. This look requires very light makeup coverage and little to no powder with a very glossy and translucent finish. After shaving your face (yes I did just say that), you can use a pore perfector cream like It’s Skin - Power 10 Formula - PO Effector Face Serum. This cream will mattify your face, especially if you have an oily “T” zone. Add a few drops of Becca’s Shimmering Skin Perfector to your BB or CC cream makeup. I use Smashbox’s Camera Ready BB Water. If you want to skip the added step, try Laneige’s BB Cushion Hydra Radiance Cream with SPF 50.

Okay, so maybe it never left in the first place. Tons of NYFW looks added very bronzy skin to the mix. Bronzy skin and a nude lip was all the rage, and I must admit that I am fascinated with this look. I have tried lots of bronzers and the easiest to apply has been Hoola’s Matte Bronzing Powder. This bronzer will look good on almost all skin types. Make sure to use some highlighter to accentuate your cheekbones and chin. Finally, pair this trend with an orangey-brown blush, and you will look as if you are fresh off of a Jamaican cruise!

#4. GLITTER AND SHINE Like a kiss from the heavens, this fun and whimsical look will add a beautiful touch to your makeup routine. Glitter in colors like pink, gold, and silver were applied to the corner of the eye and sometimes extended out to make the winged effect. At other times the glitter was pressed into the center of the eyelid to create a touch of dazzle while the rest of the face was kept clean and simple. Gildebeest Spacepaste will be your best bet to achieve this look. With tons of colors to choose from, you’re sure to find the perfect shade.

#2. MONOCHROMATIC EYE This looks is a sweet ode to all things 80s. Bold, bright colors are in, and the need to blend and shade is out. Pick a bright and beautiful color and stick with it. You can apply directly to your eyelid or create a more “winged” look. The easiest way to achieve this look is with liquid eyeshadows like Makeup Forever’s Aqua XL Color Paint Eyeshadow in Matte Fuschia. Pair your monochromatic eye with some lip gloss, and you will wow!

WRITTEN BY: Magalis Griffiths FOLLOW: @magalislove 18



at home

The good news is that if you’re tight on time, lack confidence, or don’t have the finances, you can still get in the best shape of your life without ever stepping into a gym. I love this great quote by Zig Ziglar: “Do it and then you will feel motivated to do it.” Exercise is not about being super model skinny. It’s really all about being healthy and fit. I want to help motivate you to consider putting away your doubts, excuses, or fears, and tap into the ambitious, strong, relentless, and courageous woman that God He has created you to be. Allow me

to share a few of my favorite low impact exercises with you. And guess what? You don’t even need tennis shoes! We need to make exercise a front burner issue in our lives. When we exercise, it brings God glory! When we exercise, we feel more energized and make ourselves more available to serve Him. Our body belongs to Him. It’s His temple. It’s His dwelling place. Our job is to take care of it as best as we know how. I want to help you. Most importantly, if these exercises don’t suit your personality or you have let yourself go for so long that you’re not sure where to start, remember: it’s as easy as taking a walk. Just do it without shame! Just start moving. Exercise doesn’t have to be boring or strenuous. Be creative. Make it fun. You can walk, run, jump on a trampoline, run around with the kids, take dance lessons, or just do some stretching. It’s not important how you start or where you start. Your call to action is simply to get started. So, let’s wake up those muscles, fire up our metabolism, and start feeling some heat. Grab some water and let’s do this!

DYNAMITE PLIE SQUAT You can do this using your support chair or counter. Take a wide squat position and turn your feet out naturally from your hips. Do not force it. You don’t want to place unnecessary pressure on your knees. Make sure that your legs are apart wide enough so that when you lower your body your buttocks can come down to knee level. Keep your back straight and chest lifted. Lower up and down slowly (16 counts).

the step by step


Have you ever had thoughts about wanting to work out and get in shape but just can’t seem to find the time? Women are capable of juggling many things at once. We can multitask family, kids, husbands, pets, work, and more; often times even without a calendar. We’re naturally very good at it. The real truth is that we are already our own version of a super woman. Perhaps by the time you reach the end of your day, the last thing on your mind is exercise. Or, perhaps you’re already responsible for keeping more “spinning plates” spinning than you can currently handle.

WRITTEN BY: Ashley Geidal

Facing a counter or chair for support, place one forearm over the other, leaning forward to allow your head to rest down as far as you are able. Walk your feet back so that they are underneath your hips, about hip width apart. Soften both knees, tuck your hips under and pull in your abs to protect your back. (In other words, take out any arch in the back). Draw the right heel up toward your right glute (your right buttocks). Keep your toes pointed. This is your starting position. Lower your leg with your toe pointed toward the ceiling. Raise and lower your bended leg. (16 times). Return to starting position (see photo), hold and slightly push your bended leg toward the ceiling (32 counts). We’re talking micro movements. You will feel the muscles in your leg and glute starting to burn. The supporting leg may start to shake a bit and that is normal. Extend your leg straight back behind you, keep your toes pointed and begin to raise and lower your leg without arching your back (16 times). With your leg positioned straight back behind you, slightly move it toward the ceiling (32 counts). Again, these are micro movements. Repeat on the other leg. For a greater challenge, step up onto the ball of the supporting foot.

Pulse down for 16 counts, lift one heel up for 16 counts, then alternate 16, then do both for 16 and repeat one more time.



the step by step

Plank is one of the best exercises for toning your abs and turning on the entire body.

This is your classical ballet first position and it is a great exercise to trim your thighs.

This is also a great way to wake up all the muscles in the body.

From a kneeling position, lean forward and place your forearms out in front of you on the floor shoulder width apart. Your palms are facing down, your elbows are directly underneath the shoulders, your hips are tucked under, and your head is aligned with your spine. Press your legs back so that your body is lifted off of the floor. Push your toes into the floor and straighten your legs as long as possible out behind you. Resting your upper body weight on your forearms helps you keep your balance.



Stand facing your chair, counter, etc. Place your hands on the chair about a forearms distance away (stand tall in your posture pulling chest and head up). With your hands apart, slightly wider than hip width, make a small letter v with your feet by bringing your heels together and toes apart about 3 inches. Keep your heels together as you rise up on to the balls of your feet as if you were wearing a pair of stilettos. Bend your knees until you feel your thighs getting warm.

Hold for 30 seconds and remember to breathe.

This is your starting position.

Bend your right knee down to the floor and straighten (8 times)

Remain on your toes and complete three phases of this exercise:

Do the same with your left leg (8 times).

1. Bend your knees and slowly move your body down one inch and up one inch (8 times).

Then with toes still on the floor, your body straight and lifted up off the floor, rock your body (elbows still resting on the floor) forward and backward (8 times).

2. Speed up these movements another 8 times.

Sit back on your calves, arms stretched out in front of you and relax for a moment. If you’re up to it, and I hope you are, repeat this exercise one more time.

Keeping your hips in line with your elbow, take a large step away so that your torso lengthens on an incline. Make sure your supporting foot is directly below your hips, pointing slightly toward your furniture and softening the knee.



Keep your abdominal wall tight and don’t let your hips sink down.

Stand next to your support furniture sideways. Place your forearm gently on your support without putting all of your weight on it.

Raise your free leg to hip level and straighten it directly out to your side and raise your free arm toward the ceiling so that your body looks like a cross (minus your arm that is leaning on your support).


Your toes are pointed and your inner thigh is facing the floor.

3. Then go down one inch and then down again and return to starting position. 4. Remaining on your toes and keeping the burn going, slightly push your knees outward (8 times). Repeat one more time.


This is your starting position. As you lower the leg, stretch your free arm up and over your head keeping it straight. Do not bend your arm. As you lift your leg, the arm moves parallel to the leg. Lower and lift (16 times). Hold at the starting position and start to pulse your leg (32 counts). Switch sides. 23

DIAMOND ABS Lie on the mat and prop yourself up with your elbows and your forearms resting on the mat. Your elbows should be directly under your shoulders. Your palms are flat on the floor, facing down. Draw your shoulders down and out and away from your ears. Raise your legs straight up over your hips, point your toes toward the ceiling, open your knees slightly, and notice that your toes and heels will automatically remain touching, creating a diamond shape.


Remain in that position and allow your hips to sink heavy in the floor allowing your back to lengthen.

Sit on your mat with your feet on the floor hip width apart. Your knees are bent and raised up in front of you. Hold onto your outer thigh and lean back to your lowest point where it’s comfortable for you (not all the way down to the floor). Your goal is to try to get your waistline to touch the mat. If this is a challenge feel free to grab an exercise ball or a rolled-up towel and place it below your lower back. Everyone’s position for this exercise will vary depending on the strength of your abdomen muscles. This is your starting position. Curl your ribcage up a few inches toward your thighs and then roll back down to your starting position. Next pull in your abs as you round your spine. As you pull in your ab muscles tuck your pelvis up and under in a scooping motion. See how your abs hollow out. Tuck under 8 times. Repeat with the legs straightened, toes pointed, and arms out in front of you. Repeat entire set 2 times


This is your starting position. Keep your legs in that diamond shape and begin to alternate lowering and raising one leg at a time slowly back into this diamond position. Now lower one leg and then the other down to meet it, keeping that diamond position at all times. Then lift one leg up and bring the other up to meet back at the top. Do 2 complete sets of these, making sure to keep pressing your lower back into the floor and keeping an open chest. Next, squeeze your knees together then open back up to the diamond position. Concentrate on initiating the movement from deep in your core (8 times).

the step by step

Repeat set one more time.


Finally, spring is here! Out with the cold and in with the warmer weather! Put away the boots and bulky winter sweaters, and make room for these spring wardrobe staples. BOLD COLORS Wearing bold and bright colors is almost a rite of passage that comes with the warmer weather. Brighten up your wardrobe this spring with fun colors--orange, yellow, pink, and purple just to name a few! I completed my denim outfit by slipping on a pair of tangerine slingbacks and some dangling earrings to match. Outfit Details Shoes: Zara Earrings: Forever21 Clutch: Stella & Dot TRENCH COAT Outsmart tricky spring weather with a trench coat. You can go classic or mix it up with a color or print. I chose a light, snakeskin print jacket to help transition my outfits from winter to spring and bring an exotic pattern to a classic piece. Outfit Details Coat: Boohoo Belt Bag: Boohoo RAIN BOOTS Rain boots are a must if you’re going to strut your way through the April showers of spring! Wear them tall or short, knee-length or to your ankles. I went with ankle boots in a fun color to brighten up a rainy day! Outfit Details Boots: Seven7 Umbrella: Target Jacket: H&M T-Shirt: Altar’d State

Spring Staples

WRITTEN BY: Chidinma Sarpong FOLLOW: @mysundaybest







HAPPY & HEALTHY HOME Your Spring Cleaning Guide

Cleanliness is next to godliness, right? Nothing inspires me to clean more than the thought of spring. Everything outside is becoming green, and the scent of fresh flowers mixed with April showers is in the air. I want my home to get a clean overhaul after months of winter hibernation. Throughout the busyness of the year, it’s good to keep a cleaning chart handy. A cleaning chart will help you break down and delegate your household chores and alleviate that overwhelmed feeling that we all get with a quick glance around a messy space. Create a chore chart for yourself that is manageable within your daily schedule. Maybe you need to do laundry daily to keep it manageable, or maybe weekly is sufficient. Maybe you clean your kitchen on Monday, your bathrooms on Tuesday, and change your bed sheets and linens every Friday. Find what

works with your schedule, and create a routine. Blocking and assigning times to clean your home regularly makes a huge task very manageable and can make the busiest of women feel like the best homemaker! Aside from day to day chores and upkeep, spring is a great time to dig deep! Here are some tips to get your home fresh, clean, and ready for spring! It all starts with a list, so we’ve created a checklist that you can revisit every spring to make sure your home is a healthy, happy space. Download our printable Spring Cleaning Checklist online at THEELLEJOURNAL.COM!

Spring Cleaning CHECKLIST

☐ Wipe down walls & ceilings : vacuum with attachment/ warm rag and dish soap ☐ Dust thoroughly: cloth/ feather duster/ furniture polish ☐ Clean upholstered furniture: use a damp cloth to spot treat/ rent an upholstery cleaner ☐ Wash screens: scrub brush/ water/ dish soap ☐ Clean grout: toothbrush/grout cleaner ☐ Polish metal doors/window hardware: Polish cloth/ tarnish remover ☐ Update smoke/ Carbon Monoxide detectors: batteries ☐ Change lightbulbs/Wipe down light fixtures ☐ Launder window treatments: Check if machine washable, if not take outside and beat/ send to dry cleaner ☐ Change to lightweight spring/summer bedding: Launder & fold winter bedding ☐ Shampoo carpets: Spot clean with carpet cleaner/ rent a carpet cleaning machine ☐Wash windows: Squeegee/ glass cleaner ☐ Scrub floors & baseboards: Mop/bucket/ favorite floor cleaner.






Garlic Herb Roasted

4 cloves garlic, finely chopped 1 tsp. dried oregano 1 tbsp. chili powder 1/2 tbsp. ground cumin 2 tbsp. garlic olive oil salt/pepper 4 chicken leg quarters 1/2 cup chicken broth 1/4 cup white wine

DIRECTIONS: Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Lightly oil a baking sheet. Cut off excess fat and trim chicken quarters. Rinse and pat dry. In a small bowl, combine garlic, oregano, chili powder, cumin, salt and pepper. Brush each chicken piece with a light layer of garlic olive oil. Coat with herb and spice mix. Before adding chicken to the baking sheet, add chicken broth and white wine to 1/4 inch. Place chicken quarters on a baking sheet. Roast in oven 25 minutes or until juices run clear.

INGREDIENTS: 2 tbsp. olive oil 3 cups chicken stock 2 cups broccoli florets 1 large onion, diced 2 carrots, chopped 2 tsp. salt 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper 4 garlic cloves, finely chopped 1 cup half-and-half 4 ounces Beemster Lite Cheese, ribbons for garnish

DIRECTIONS: Heat oil in a pan and add onion and garlic until soft and tender. Add chicken stock and broccoli and cook until tender. Pour into blender (I used my Ninja) and blend until fine. Add in half and half and Beemster cheese. Garnish with cheese ribbons and parsley.

WRITTEN BY: Terri Dowd FOLLOW: @parmesanprincess 32


Broccoli & Cheese

Recipes by Terri Dowd of The Paremsean Princess, Inc




clams in broth

2 cups brussels sprouts 2 tbsp. olive oil salt/pepper 1/3 lb. thick pancetta, cut into small cubes For the ricotta base mix: 2 cups fresh ricotta cheese 3 cloves garlic, finely chopped salt/pepper Your favorite prepared pizza dough or shell. Parmigiano Reggiano for topping. (I used 14 month aged)

INGREDIENTS: 2 tbsp. olive oil 3 cloves of garlic, finely chopped


1 small onion, finely chopped

Heat olive oil in a soup pot.

1 12 oz. package clam meat

Add garlic, onion, white wine, clam meat, salt and pepper, and cook until onions are softened.

1 cup white wine, I used Chardonnay 10 cups chicken stock, homemade or store bought 1 cup sliced button mushrooms 2 dozen little neck clams 1 cup cannellini beans


Add stock, mushrooms, beans, and clams. Cook until clams open and all are heated through. Remove from heat and add kale, sliced tomatoes, red pepper flakes, salt and pepper.


Garlic Ricotta & Roasted Brussels Sprouts

Top with fresh grated Parmigiano Reggiano and serve with crusty bread.

1/2 cup sliced grape, cherry tomatoes, sliced

Preheat oven 400 degrees. Clean and slice brussels sprouts in half. Toss with olive oil, salt and pepper. Roast until browned to desired likeness and remove from pan. Meanwhile, cook pancetta bits in a pan until crispy. Add the pancetta to the brussel sprouts and mix well. Cover the pizza shell with ricotta mixture. Add brussels sprouts/pancetta layer. Top with fresh grated Parmigiano Reggiano cheese.

1 cup kale red pepper flakes to taste salt/pepper to taste Fresh grated Parmigiano Reggiano Crusty bread

INGREDIENTS: 1-1/2 tbsp. butter 4 carrots, chopped 3 celery stalks, chopped 1 medium onion, diced 3 cloves of garlic, finely chopped 1 roasted chicken, meat off the bone shredded and chopped 2 quarts of chicken stock (homemade or store bought) salt (if needed) / pepper to taste 1/4 lb. linguini noodles, cut into 2.5 inch noodles Parmigiano Reggiano, fresh grated

DIRECTIONS: Cook the stock Melt butter with garlic, and onion to a large pot and cook until the onions are translucent. Add carrots, celery, and chicken and simmer for 30 minutes to 1 hour. Add pepper (and salt) to taste. Add noodles 10-15 minutes before you are ready to eat. Spoon into bowls and top with fresh grated Parmigiano Reggiano cheese


Homemade Chicken Noodle

Recipes by Terri Dowd of The Paremsean Princess, Inc




WRITTEN BY: Joie Miller FOLLOW: @joiemiller


hat does it really mean to be happy? Is it an elusive, unattainable picture inspired by social media? Is it a false reality that you’ve created in your mind that you continually measure yourself against and fail? Do you say, “One day I’ll be happy when...” or, “ I could be happy if...” Insert whatever you want: a husband, a new job, a million dollars, if I had a child, if I looked like her. The list goes on. We talk about happiness as a destination rather than a state of being. Not only do we treat it as a destination, but as a destination that would be impossible to reach. The truth is, happiness is a feeling, an emotion that changes depending on outside circumstances. But what we are actually searching for is something quite different. What we are looking for is called joy, and with it, peace! Joy is not an emotion but a fruit. Joy and peace are two of the benefits of knowing God. They are not produced from a feeling or dictated by whether you had a good day or a bad day. They are only accessed through a relationship with the Heavenly Father. Joy and peace are not determined by an outside circumstance.

P AI N Let go of pain and receive joy. If you are holding on to something from the past, the grip of pain is also holding on to you. Continuing to meditate on circumstances, tragedy, loss, and betrayal will only sabotage your journey to joy. If we allow them to, these experiences will take root in our hearts and minds and paralyze our growth and steal our peace. Isaiah 26:3 says, “You will keep in perfect peace those whose thoughts are fixed on you.” Peace is accessed when you fix your mind on the Lord and not on your pain. He loves you and cares for you too much to see you stuck in that place of pain. God wants to heal your hurts and mend your broken heart so that you can move on to walk in supernatural joy. You can’t focus on the present--and certainly not the future--if you are constantly reliving the past. Each time you meditate on the pain and hurt, it becomes your

reality. Your brain cannot tell if what you are thinking about is actually happening or if it is just a thought; with that understanding, every painful memory is accompanied by a negative emotion. And your brain is actually reliving these memories as if they are actually occurring. The negative emotions keep joy at bay. Let go of the past once and for all! Choose to forgive and forget about it. The moment you choose to release and let go will be the moment you are free . Why let an experience or even a person rob you of enjoying your life? Choos ing not to let go and to forgive literally pushes the pause button of time and traps you in that very season of pain. Remember, you have control over your thoughts, so stop meditating on the past and move forward on the road to true joy and happiness! Remember, forgiveness is a choice, not an emotion. Make the choice to live happy & free!

“Stop waiting for happiness, and start enjoying the gift of life. Do not let another day go by without giving yourself permission to let go of some junk and receive true joy!”

This means you can actually be in the middle of a difficult situation and still operate in joy. You can be at peace even if you are not where you want to be yet! It’s not a destination, but it’s something you can have immediately, at any time. You can have joy right smack in the middle of the process of getting from where you are now to where you want to be. Knowing the difference between fleeting emotional and circumstantial happiness and the steadfast, unchanging, strengthening fruit of the spirit of God is life changing. Stop waiting for happiness, and start enjoying the gift of life. Do not let another day go by without giving yourself permission to let go of some junk and receive true joy! What are some pitfalls that keep us from receiving joy?




COMPARISON Stop comparing yourself to others and receive joy! We’ve all heard the quote, “ Comparison is the thief of joy”, and it really is true! The moment that we open up Instagram, leave a playdate with other moms, or even spend time with friends, what do we naturally do? We compare! We measure what we know about ourselves--faults, shortcomings, stretchmarks, etc--with what we don’t know about them. This leaves us at a constant loss. We are losing at a game that we were never meant to play. The measuring stick is rigged in our opponent’s favor every time. The response is the same. We either tear our competition down with our words, or even worse, we tear ourselves down. The Bible tells us that it is not wise to compare and compartmentalize (2 Corinthians 10:12). We create a false mold of happiness or success that we just don’t fit into. But, what we don’t often realize is that there is no mold! God created you wonderfully, beautifully, and uniquely. You are custom fit to fulfill your purpose, to be the mom of YOUR kids, to be the wife to YOUR husband. Your talents and gifts were never meant to fulfill another person’s life, and theirs aren’t meant for you. Don’t miss out on the joy that comes with embracing who God created you to be.

Slow down and receive joy. Yes, I said slow down. Stop letting yourself be overwhelmed. Busyness often lends to anxiety. Make your goal to be productive rather than busy. Reevaluate your schedule and make time to invest into the things that matter. Understand that you are amazing, but you are not responsible for everyone and ev erything going on in the world. Prioritize what matters most to you. It doesn’t matter if you are a CEO or a stay at home mom, we are all equally susceptible to becoming task driven rather that purposeful. For some, that means getting up ear lier to have time to pray, read, exercise, and re flect upon your day. For others, that may mean that you stop being driven by a chore list and take time to laugh and play with your toddler. You are not a robot which means that there are things in life that naturally bring you joy and fulfillment. This may be your children, spending time with good friends, serving a mission, running a marathon, getting deeper into the Bible, or developing a more consistent prayer life. If

you continually ignore your passions, you will cut yourself short of the fuel that drives every other area of your life. Joy comes with know ing you are full of passion and purpose, not that you are just busy. Take time to reflect on your priorities. Imagine giving your younger self ad vice. What are the regrets you want to steer clear of? Start living that life now, and make time for what’s important to to you. As you fuel your passion, that passion will lead to purpose, and living with purpose brings much peace, joy, and happine ss! Be strengthened by joy today! It is a gift from heaven for you to enjoy and thrive in the life that has been given to you. Do not waste one more day on the journey toward the illusion of, “One day, I will be happy.” Let go of whatever is holding you back and walk in renewed strength, happiness, and fulfillment knowing that you get one life to live, so enjoy every moment of it! Happiness truly manifests from the inside out!

Every negative thought you have towards yourself turns into a belief. If you’re not careful, you can become your own worst enemy. Embrace the beauty in YOU! Grow, learn, be inspired, but be true to who you are. Every choice you make, every action you take, and every thought you think reinforces the core of who you know yourself to be. So be one hundred percent authentic to you! How sad would it be to one day look back and realize the great life you missed out on by not embracing who God created you to be. This revelation gives you permission to be you and to be happy. Choose to love yourself and live in abundant joy!



3 WAYS TO Floral

WRITTEN BY: Chidinma Sarpong FOLLOW: @mysundaybest



It’s fun to wear florals all year round, but nothing beats wearing flowers in the spring! You’ll see florals from all the big fashion houses like Dolce & Gabbana, Versace, and others. So get ahead of the trend and check out 3 ways you can slay florals this spring! 2.

Style# 1: Tops Bodysuit: Nordstrom Mom Jeans: Target Heels: ASOS Style #2: Dresses Dress: Free People Shoes: ShoeDazzle Style #3: Shoes Earrings: YSL Bag: Tory Burch Watch: Adidas Heels: DSW Mom Jeans: Madewell Top: Chloé Hat: Urban Outfitters



“A few months ago, I got a phone call telling me that my Dad had gone to heaven. In the natural, it’s not the best news to hear. However, the Holy Spirit had been preparing me, and I had a supernatural peace that came over me. The Lord had been preparing me, and I had been spending three days prior to that call fasting and studying on peace—the supernatural peace that passes all understanding. It was a big moment because most people, after learning that a loved one has passed, go haywire as they begin to grieve. The feelings of depression, confusion, and sadness can be overwhelming. Thank God I had been renewing my mind. So, when a bad report came, I was held steady, happy, and emotionally healthy and strong. When thoughts of loss and sadness tried to come, I held my ground and stayed in peace by speaking words out of my mouth and keeping my mind set on Jesus and the Word of God.” - Continue this article by Melissa Swindle on



Alysha and her husband knew that they wanted to start a family right away. As soon as they were married, they began trying for a baby. After 2 miscarriages, Miracle Mia was born. Their dream was to have a large family, so she and her husband began trying soon after for another baby. During this time, she became aware that Bruce, their close family friend, was in desperate need of a kidney; her mom shared with her that Bruce needed a miracle. Without hesitation, Alysha said, “Well, I’ll give him my kidney!”. With that statement, she began to feel the desire to actually donate her kidney to Bruce. She told him that after she got pregnant and had her second child, she would begin the process to see if her kidney was a match.


WRITTEN BY: Bethany Franz FOLLOW: @bethcfranz

After multiple surgeries to remedy issues she was having with conception, then suffering a third miscarriage, doctors told Alysha that she would not be able to carry another child. Feeling disappointed, Alysha remembered her call. If her body could not produce life in one manner, she could still give life in another way. She knew that God could still use her to give life, AND God could still fulfill her dreams of having a large family. She did not have to give up the desires of her heart in order to fulfill what God was asking her to do. In fact, she knew that as she was being obedient to God, He would increase her family far beyond what she could do in her own strength. She believed that as she sowed a part of her own body, God would renew her dream of growing her own family. Alysha began to move forward with the testing. After many many tests, doctor’s appointments, interviews and blood draws, she learned that she was a match for Bruce! The surgery was scheduled, and the miracle was in motion.

Alysha is a 25 year old wife to Christopher and mother to Mia—whom she lovingly calls her “Miracle Mia” and her For God so loved, that He GAVE. To love is to give; that is the “Mighty Mia”. Mia is a sweet little firecracker who loves definition of the incredible gift Alysha McConnell gave to her friend. leopard print and has the shoes to prove it! She’s a girly girl through and through, and the joy that she brings to her I walked into the coffee shop and saw a young mom doting on her mom and grandma’s faces is undeniable. beautiful daughter and chatting with her mother. Everyone else in the shop seemed so busy--not realizing the miracle that was Alysha’s life is an amazing story of the faithfulness of God sitting in their midst. Alysha proudly sat wearing her “Donating and how, when you are obedient to the call of God on your Saves Lives” shirt. She is immensely proud of what she has done life, He will do more than you can imagine and more than in her life, and she is so incredibly full of joy and peace. And she you could have done in your own strength. should be. Alysha had been told by her physician that she would not be able to carry a child. But there she sat, with her Miracle Mia. Her gratitude and thankfulness for her own miracle led her to become the miracle in someone else’s life. At just 25 years old, Alysha donated her kidney to a lifelong family friend named Bruce.

Alysha’s mom, Tracey, and I sat listening to Alysha’s story in that coffee shop. Every once in a while, Tracey would interject with, “God is so faithful” or, “Alysha is so strong.” I was only hearing her story for the first time, and I, too, was in awe of this young mother’s strength and joy.

Giving is built into the core of Alysha and her family. When she was a little girl, she watched as friends and strangers donated blood to give her brother—who was diagnosed with leukemia at a young age—a second chance. She grew up seeing miracles firsthand, and she grew up watching her family stay steadfast and obedient the call of God even when they didn’t fully understand how He was going to make a way.

Being obedient to what you feel that God has called you to do often means being steadfast in your beliefs even when others tell you differently or when the situation looks like it cannot work out. Alysha knew what God had told her to do, but that did not mean that fear and doubt would not try to creep in and make her change her mind. Questions like, “How are you going to do this as a young mom?” and, “Why would you do this?” began to arise, but she remained constant. Her


answers to those questions were full of faith: “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me” and “Why would I not do this?” She surrounded herself with people who held her up when the doubt crept in and kept her mind focused on what she knew she was to do. She relied on the support of her close friends and family, especially her husband and her mom.

On the day of surgery, Psalm 23 was on Alysha’s heart. “He leads me beside still waters; He restores my soul...” The surgery was successful, but the road to recovery was long. She was unable to lift her daughter for 8 weeks and relied on her husband and her mother for almost everything. Still, she was not discouraged; still she remained strong. She knew she had been obedient and that God would be faithful. Knowing that God had called her to give this incredible gift, Alysha confidently went through the recovery process and knew that God was with her every step of the way. She was strong in the face of discouraging comments and thoughts, and that strength brought her through the doubt and anxiety leading up to the surgery and during the recovery process. She was adamant that it was not the surgery that caused the anxiety, but the needles and IVs! When I was sitting with Alysha, I could not help but notice over and over again how happy and at peace she was. When I asked where that strength and joy came from, she said that being obedient to what God had asked her to do and in being the miracle for someone else, her joy had been made complete and full. Alysha’s incredible story has opened up multiple opportunities to share her story and her faith. Her story was featured on the front page of her local newspaper on Thanksgiving morning. Her mom wrote a book about their incredible journey, highlighting the faithfulness of God. Their family friend is not the only one whose life has been impacted by this miracle; it has inspired and brought hope to many others. Instead of trying to figure it all out or walking in fear and anxiety, she trusted God and walked in confident faith. She turned to Him for her strength, and in doing so, found a confident joy that she now walks in daily.


HOW TO STAY IN JOY, HEALTH & strentgh WRITTEN BY: Adalis Shuttlesworth FOLLOW: @adalisshuttlesworth

“But—When God our Savior revealed his kindness and love, he saved us, not because of the righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy. He washed away our sins, giving us a new birth and new life through the Holy Spirit. He generously poured out the Spirit upon us through Jesus Christ our Savior.” TITUS 3:4-6

The power of salvation is absolutely incredible! That word for ‘saved’ in Titus 3 is called sozo in the original Greek. Sozo is defined as, “to save—deliver or protect, heal, preserve, do well, be whole”. We understand that a lot can be lost in translation, and this word is proof of that! When you give your heart to Jesus, you aren’t just saved from eternal damnation - you are delivered, protected, healed, preserved, well, and completely whole!

STAY IN THE WORD The understanding of God’s Word is what gives light (Psalm 119:130). If you lack the foundation of God’s Word in your life, you’ll continue to struggle and repeat your old behaviors. If you’ve determined (like I have) that this year won’t be a repeat of the last, you must remain in the Word. (Proverbs 4:20-22).

Most believers will struggle their whole lives trying to survive. God didn’t save you so you could tread water and barely keep afloat in the sea of life. He pulled you out of the waters and set your feet on a rock! (Psalm 40:2) The Bible says that the children of God are reserved for signs and wonders! (Isaiah 8:18) God wants you to be happy, healthy, and strong. You are the billboard for a God who’s alive and well. You were never meant to crawl through life. You were created to shine bright and lead others in the way they should go.

REFUSE TO SAY THE OPPOSITE OF WHAT GOD HAS PROMISED If you continue to say you’re not happy, healthy, or strong, you won’t be! The Bible says in Matthew 12:37, “For by your words you will be justified, and by your words you will be condemned.” What you say has the power to liberate you or entrap you! That’s why we’re instructed to say something, in order for us to see something (Mark 11:23). Remember, Joel 3:10 declares, “Let the weak say I am strong!” You aren’t denying reality, you’re simply stating the greater truth!

ISAIAH 53:4-5: “Yet it was our weaknesses he carried; it was our sorrows that weighed him down. And we thought his troubles were a punishment from God, a punishment for his own sins! But he was pierced for our rebellion, crushed for our sins. He was beaten so we could be whole. He was whipped so we could be healed.”

BE OBEDIENT With the Word comes specific instruction that must be applied to your life. God isn’t silent! He will speak to you with regard to what you’re going through. Pick up your journal, a cup of coffee, and LISTEN. When you invoke God to move on your behalf through His Word (faith in God’s Word), the Holy Spirit will lead you in the way you should go (Isaiah 30:21). It may be as simple as getting rid of soda or sugary drinks, or exercising more. It may be moving out of the town or state in which you’re living or letting go of toxic friends that will continue to hold you down. Whatever His instruction is, do it!

Jesus could have just died for our sins, but He didn’t. He cared so much about our well being that He absorbed every problem we could ever endure on the cross. Weakness, sorrows, trouble, rebellion, sin, and sickness were all paid for on the Cross. When you come to the understanding of what Christ accomplished for you on the Cross, you can never again fall prey to the enemy and his lies. Now that you know the truth about your salvation, here are a few things to keep you in line with what the Word says!


This is your year to shine! When Christmas comes around, you’ll throw your hands up and thank God for giving you a year FULL of happiness, joy, and strength. If you’ve never given your heart to Jesus, pray this simple prayer; “Heavenly Father, Forgive me of my sins. I believe Jesus is your son. He died a criminal’s death on the cross to set me free. And on the third day He rose from the dead, breaking every power of sin over my life. I am free. I am forgiven. I am a child of God. Thank you for saving me! In Jesus’ name!”



is the most important time to hydrate. When we wake up in the morning, our “tank” is on empty. Drinking water first thing in the morning will turn on your body’s engine for the day. It’s also important to drink half of your minimum within the first 4 hours upon waking. So, if your number is 75 ounces, you should drink at least 37 of those ounces in the morning. I know that may sound impossible for some, but consciously make your best attempt to do it.


ne of the ways God reveals Himself to us is through the wonder of miracles. He began His greatest work in Genesis 1, when God created the heavens and the earth. The earth was without form and empty. Darkness was over the surface of the deep and the Spirit of God was hovering over the waters. Before we even reach Gen. 1:3, we have the creation of water. Before anything on earth could exist and thrive, God gave us water -- the source of all life. God’s plan is perfect. Everything He created was good, and that includes you. He gave us water, the source of all life, so that we might thrive in full health, live a long life, and further His purposes through us. God desires that you wake up every morning full of vitality to run your race. So, grab a bottle of water, and let’s dive into this. Most of us already know that water is good for us. Why don’t we drink more of it then? Perhaps one of the reasons we don’t drink more of it is because we don’t understand just how important it is for our health. Or, we assume that because we are consuming a liquid (like coffee, for example) that it is going to meet our body’s hydration needs. However, there is only ONE optimal beverage that our body craves: WATER.



So, what exactly does this liquid miracle do for your body? First, your entire body is activated, set in motion, and functions properly because of water. The human body is interconnected, which also means it’s interdependent. For example, if you are dehydrated by just 5%, your body and every function of it is slowed by 30%. That’s huge! Every time you exhale, water is leaving your body, so you are constantly being depleted. When you go outside and you see your breath on a cold day, that is water leaving your system. It’s important to know that our bodies do not produce water. The truth is, the vast majority of people walk around chronically dehydrated and wonder why they feel bloated, tired, sick, and in a “fog.” F. Batmanghelidj, M.D., in his book entitled, Your Body’s Many Cries for

DURING THE DAY, TRY TO DRINK WATER EVERY HOUR! Water states, “Your body is not sick, your body is thirsty.” Are you drinking enough water to maintain your body’s optimum performance? If not, I want to encourage you to start getting enough today.

BENEFITS OF WATER Take a look at just a few of the benefits of simply consuming more water in your day. It heals, nourishes, replenishes, restores, renews, cleanses, detoxifies, aids digestion, lubricates your joints, and carries oxygen throughout your blood. It is the energy that propels the beat of your heart, and there is NO SUBSTITUTION for it. No amount of soda, Gatorade, Powerade, shakes, coffee, milk, or lattes can do for you what only the miracle of water accomplishes in your body. You may or may not be aware of this, but in the United States, the land flowing with milk and honey, we pay the highest health care costs in the world. Shouldn’t we be the healthiest? Unfortunately, sickness and disease in our nation is rampant and on the rise. Why is that? Might it be due to having traded the good for the bad, the natural for the unnatural, health for profit, and unintentionally substituted lies for the truth? Why would anyone in their right mind participate in the trade off? We live in a land filled with such abundance, and yet we live with sickness, chaos, and confusion more than we should.

HOW MUCH WATER SHOULD I DRINK? How much water do I need to drink in a day? To calculate it, take your current weight, divide it in half, and that is your goal for intake. For example, if your weight is 150, your intake would be 75 ounces of water a day. I recommend more if possible. If you’re wondering if you can drink too much, the answer is yes, but it’s nearly impossible to reach. In the morning, don’t reach for the coffee first. Grab a bottle or two of water. Add lemon, lime, whole fruit, apple cider vinegar, or honey (no flavor drops). Morning

Before bed, try to drink a significant amount of water an hour and a half before bed. Your body needs all the energy it can get to do its most important work for you. While you’re in dream land your body pulls an all-nighter. It’s busy repairing, removing toxins, and renewing all the functions of the body to get you ready for another blessed day! If you ever feel pain or discomfort in your body (whether it’s a cold, fever, arthritis, back pain, migraines, etc.), try drinking more water. Remember, “Your body is not sick, it’s thirsty!”


content. I am grateful for tap water, but it certainly is not our best choice. Tap water contains sodium fluoride and many other harmful chemicals. Science has known for years that sodium fluoride damages parts of the brain. So, with extensive research, the best water I have found is Fiji (and not just because the bottle is pretty). This water is amazingly sourced, artesian, free of chemicals, low in minerals, and is one of the few natural water sources left in the world. I try to drink at least 1 liter of this particular water a day. Consume more water! It’s easy to forget when we start making changes in our daily routine, so try setting a timer to remind you to drink water. Do what works best for you, but get that miracle into your body! Warning: I am not responsible for extended years, energy, beautiful hair, healthy skin, clarity in thinking, weight loss due to a superior digestive system, or feeling out of this world amazing!!! Raise your glass and declare a toast to the miracle of water! Resources: ESSANTE ORGANICS by Essante Incorporated, SALT AND WATER by Dr. Barbara Hendel and Peter Ferreira, YOUR BODY’S MANY CRIES FOR WATER by F. Batmanghelidj, M.D.

Drink water between meals, but not during. Most of us drink water with our meal. It’s the first thing a waiter brings to our table. So, why no water with your meal? The reason is that it dilutes your digestive fluids and slows the body’s digestion process. When this happens, fermentation, and putrefaction (decay or rotting) in the colon occurs. A healthy colon resembles the strong and healthy roots of a tree. Like strong and healthy roots make for a strong and healthy tree, a strong and healthy colon makes for a strong and healthy body. If you have to drink water with your meal, make sure it is no more than 2 ounces, and it is warm or even hot.

IS ALL WATER CREATED EQUAL? Walk through the grocery store and you will see a million different brands of water! Is there is a difference between brands? The answer to that question is yes. But, please understand by increasing your water intake no matter what brand of water you choose, as long as it is filtered, your health will improve significantly. The best water to drink is found in artesian springs. The significance of this type of water is that the water has surfaced on its own, and it has reached full maturity without drilling or man-made pressure. Water actually goes through stages before it reaches full maturation. You also want to avoid tap water and water high in mineral


April 22-26, 2019 Omni Orlando Resort Championsgate Orlando FL

s r e k pea

Interested in advertising your business in the next edition of The Elle Journal? Contact







Profile for championcenter3

The Elle Journal Spring 2019 Edition  

The Elle Journal Spring 2019 Edition