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Special Edition



Millennia-Old Movement Practice Heals Imbalances

No Need to Break the Bank to Buy Green

Native Habitats Draw Critters and Delight Kids

April 2014 | West Michigan Edition | natural awakenings

April 2014



West Michigan Edition


contact us Publishers Kyle & Amy Hass Editors S. Alison Chabonais Amanda Merritt Linda Sechrist Design & Production Interactive Media Design Scott Carvey Printer Stafford Media Solutions Natural Awakenings 484 Sunmeadow Dr. SE Grand Rapids, MI 49508 Phone: 616-656-9232

Subscriptions are available by sending $30 (12 issues) to the above address. © 2014 by Natural Awakenings. All rights reserved. Although some parts of this publication may be reproduced and reprinted, we require that prior permission be obtained in writing. Natural Awakenings is a free publication distributed locally and is supported by our advertisers. It is available in selected stores, health and education centers, healing centers, public libraries and wherever free publications are generally seen. Please call to find a location near you or if you would like copies placed at your business. We do not necessarily endorse the views expressed in the articles and advertisements, nor are we responsible for the products and services advertised. We welcome your ideas, articles and feedback.


I love the sights and sounds of April, waking up to birds chirping outside the window, opening the shades to slants of sunshine and seeing the greening land starting to bounce back from winter’s harshness. Spring shouts out a chance for us all to start fresh. It’s my signal to clean up any to-do’s I have been slacking on. April appropriately marks Earth Day, a celebration and commitment to Mother Earth’s generous goodness to all. It reminds us to actively commit to preparing our gardens for a bountiful yield and to cleaning up our community environment. A good place to start is volunteering for biannual road and waterway cleanup crews. This month’s special Green Living issue is dedicated to our community and our planet. We’ve packed it with empowering tips and inspiring information to aid us all in thoughtfully and lovingly embracing a more Earth-friendly and sustainable lifestyle. Making changes toward more ecologically sound ways of living may seem at first to be an overwhelming undertaking, but by taking one new step at a time you can make changes that really make a difference. Every one adds up in helping to preserve a livable planet for generations to come. In this month’s feature article, “Five Big Life Decisions,” Crissy Trask explains how every family can save money and the planet by purchasing the right home, choosing the best car, eating healthier foods and choosing to support local businesses. In our Green Living article, “Green & Thrifty,” Lane Vail shares easy tips on how to keep our homes clean without using harsh chemicals. All of it provides us a good green beginning that will keep on giving. Come out and visit us this month at the Harvest Health Foods/Gazelle Sports 6k Green Day Fun Run & Health Fair on Thursday April 24 from 5-8pm (see our Newsbriefs section for more details). Natural Awakenings also will be present at the Muskegon Earth Day event on Saturday, April 26 (see ad on page 10 for details). We look forward to seeing you at these hope-filled events! Happy Earth Day,

Natural Awakenings is locally owned and operated.

Amy & Kyle Hass Publishers

Never Glossy. Always Green. Natural Awakenings practices environmental sustainability by printing on post-consumer recycled paper with soy-based ink. This choice avoids the toxic chemicals and high energy costs of producing shiny, coated paper that is hard to recycle.

Natural Awakenings of West Michigan

natural awakenings


April 2014


contents Natural Awakenings is your guide to a healthier, more

9 5 newsbriefs balanced life. In each issue readers find cutting-edge information on natural health, nutrition, fitness, personal growth, green living, creative expression and the products 9 healthbriefs and services that support a healthy lifestyle. 11 globalbriefs 14 GREAT LAKES, 14 13 ecotip GREAT LIGHTHOUSES A Journey Through our State 11 17 fitbody 19 wisewords 17 QI WHIZ Qigong Steps Up 24 consciouseating Vitality and Serenity by Amanda Merritt

26 greenliving

by Meredith Montgomery

32 healthykids


34 calendar


37 naturaldirectory 39 classifieds

advertising & submissions

Five Eco-Friendly Life Decisions that Can Actually Save Money by Crissy Trask


Sowing Seeds Long After the Season by Kim Racette

HOW TO ADVERTISE To advertise with Natural Awakenings or request a media kit, please contact us at 616-656-9232 or email: Publisher@ Deadline for space reservation is the 12th of each month prior to publication.

NEWS BRIEFS & ARTICLE SUBMISSIONS Email articles to: Deadline for articles is the 5th of the month prior to publication. Submit News Briefs online at Deadline for news briefs is the 12th of the month prior to publication.

CALENDAR SUBMISSIONS Submit Calendar Events online at: Calendar deadline is the 15th of the month prior to publication.

WHERE TO PICK UP NATURAL AWAKENINGS If you enjoyed this magazine and would like to know where you can pick up a free copy in your area, please contact us at 616656-9232 or email us at:

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West Michigan Edition



Decreasing Cost Make it a Good Investment by Robert Rafson




DIY Recipes Keep Your Home Naturally Clean by Lane Vail



Native Habitats Draw Critters and Delight Kids by Avery Mack


newsbriefs Grand River GreenUp


he Grand Rapids Center for Mindfulness is partnering with Dana Boyer, LMSW, and Barbara Williams, LPC, to bring you a screening of The Mindfulness Movie at 7:00pm on April 18th at Gilda’s Club Grand Rapids located at 1806 Bridge Street NW. This will be an evening to enjoy cinematography and dialogue about mindful living. A suggested donation of $5 will go towards scholarships to support participants of mindfulness programs. The Mindfulness Movie is a fun and educational journey showcasing the worldwide brain research proving the benefits of mindfulness and the public’s increasing awareness and acceptance of the practice. The movie celebrates those who have reshaped mindfulness into everyday, practical skills. It tells the heartfelt stories of military personnel and teenagers using mindfulness to overcome stress, anxiety, depression, and PTSD. These real life examples of personal initiative and success truly inspire the viewer to engage the world in a new way.


n Saturday, April 19, join the West Michigan Environmental Action Council and the Grand Haven Area Jaycees for the 4th Annual Grand River GreenUp. The GreenUp focuses on removing trash and recyclables from the banks of the Grand River and is one of the lakeshore’s biggest Earth Week events. Since 2011, volunteers have removed over 25,000 pounds of trash and more than 9,500 pounds of recyclables from the lower Grand River. All are welcome to participate, but must be able to safely and responsibly navigate riverbank terrain. Food, refreshments and t-shirts will be provided to volunteers. The 4th Annual Grand River GreenUp will begin at Harbor Island in Grand Haven and take place from 9am-1pm. This event will take place rain or shine, but severe weather events may postpone the GreenUp to a later date. For more information or sponsorship opportunities, contact Becky Brown from the West Michigan Environmental Action Council at or 616-451-3051. To learn more and register, visit

Please RSVP to or 616-361-3660. See ad page 9.


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Now you can end Sleep Apnea , Restless Legs and Leg Cramps and get a good Night’s sleep – night after night. Hi, I’m Steve Frank and I suffered from sleep apnea for years, so I know exactly what you’re going through. I even tried the CPAP machine but I could not sleep with anything strapped to my face. It was a serious problem and I was determined to find an answer. As an herbalist, I diligently pursued a group of herbs that would correct this problem and thank goodness, my persistence paid off! My patent-pending formulation has helped thousands and I use it every night. Now you can try it too! My Mom asked me what to do about persistent leg cramps. She had tried all the suggested supplements but still had problems. I put together a group of herbs to relax nerves, reduce tension and increase circulation. It worked great for her! Later, I found that it works for Restless Legs as well. Now you can use it too.

You owe it to yourself & your spouse to try these great products! 1-800-991-7088 natural awakenings

April 2014


Experience Your

Full Potential Coaching for Optimal Health and Performance

Elle Ingalls

CEO and Founder 269-832-3573

Muskegon Area Earth Week


he 3rd Annual Muskegon Area Earth Week is April 20-26, 2014. Plans include Creation Care Day, Sustainability Champion Awards, workshops, household hazardous waste collection and more. The filledweek concludes with Earth Fair on April 26, 2014 from 12:003:00pm held at Reeths-Puffer Elementary School, located at 874 E. Giles Road in Muskegon. It will be a wonderful week filled with events that educate, inspire and encourage acts for change that benefit our community and our earth. Muskegon has a lot to offer in terms of natural resources, eco products and services, green jobs, recreation and sustainable practices. Muskegon Area Earth Week promises to be an event that results in positive actions in our community. We hope you will be part of the movement. If you have any questions please contact Joel Darling at 231-288-0999 or See ad page 33.

18th Annual Wege Foundation Speaker Series

Harmony ‘n Health Colon Hydrotherapy

Mary A. DeLange C.C.T. C.M.T. 616-456-5033

Some Benefits of Colon Hydrotherapy: ~ Remove Toxic Waste from ones body ~ Eradicate Constipation ~ Removes Stomach Bloat ~ Increase ones Energy

Therapeutic Massage also available


West Michigan Edition


om Kiernan, CEO of American Wind Energy Association (AWEA), is the speaker for the 18th Annual Wege Foundation Speaker Series. The event, which promotes foundation founder Peter Wege’s Economicology philosophy, will take place on Thursday, April 24 from 4:00-5:00pm at the Aquinas College Performing Arts Center. The event is free and open to the public and is Tom Kiernan followed by a reception. Tom Kiernan is one of the country’s leading experts and proponents of wind power. Kiernan and the AWEA are dedicated to increasing demand for wind power, reducing cost and addressing implementation issues. Previously, Kiernan was CEO of the National Parks Conservation Association for 15 years, and served as the founding Co-Chair of the Healing Our Waters – Great Lakes Coalition founded by Peter Wege and funded by the Wege Foundation. Kiernan also spent three years in the EPA during George H. W. Bush’s administration. Kiernan will talk about the future of wind power in the US and why it is so important for the future of Michigan’s economy and its environment. “Today, wind provides four percent of America’s energy,” Kiernan says.

“We can get to 20 percent by increasing demand, reducing costs, addressing implementation issues and continuing to educate legislators and the public.” “Michigan’s economic and environmental wellbeing depends on developing clean, renewable sources of electricity,” said Ellen Satterlee, CEO of the Wege Foundation, “and Tom will help show us the pathway to a sustainable future.”

and a ten minute period of meditation, and EASWARAN on DVD, called one of the foremost teachers of meditation in our times. Interested adults are welcome and no registration is needed. Admission is a free will donation. For more information visit

The Aquinas College Performing Arts Center is located at 1703 Robinson Road S.E. An RSVP is required. conferencing/wegespeaker.html. See ad page 26.

Passage Meditation Presentation

Free 6k Fun Run & Health Fair


elebrating 5 Years of Passage Meditation as taught by Eknath Easwaran. Passage Meditation is very practical in solving life’s problems big and small, leading to a very high purpose. Easwaran wrote “While there is a great deal to be said for Eknath Easwaran scholastic education, the great sages and saints of all religions testify unanimously that there is much more to the human being than the physical, the mental and the intellectual. How much more is a truth that cannot be conveyed in words? We have to realize it ourselves.” In celebration of their fifth year in Grand Rapids, an introductory presentation will be held on April 24 from 7:00-8:00pm at Unity of Grand Rapids located at 1711 Walker NW. Presentation includes books and tapes by EASWARAN, a sharing on meditation and the allied skills, Instructions for


oin Harvest Health Foods and Gazelle Sports at the annual Green Day 6k fun run on April 24 from 5:008:00pm. Each year thousands of people celebrate Earth Day to acknowledge and appreciate the amazing resources available in our world. Gazelle Sports and Harvest Health Foods recognize the lifestyle choices that we make have a significant impact on our health and the environment. The Green Day 6k fun run is their way to say thank you for your support and to encourage those lifestyle choices that move us all toward a healthier, greener community. The health fair runs from 5-8pm with plenty of vendors on hand with giveaways, samples and raffle items. The 6k run starts at 6:30pm. Strollers and bikes are welcome; however the roads are not closed so please pay attention to the course. Comprenew will also be there accepting electronic items for recycling. Bring in an item and receive $5 to Gazelle and $5 to Harvest Health (One coupon per family). Events take place at Harvest Health Foods located at 6807 Cascade Rd, SE in Grand Rapids.

(616) 301-3000 1801 Breton SE Grand Rapids (across the street from the Breton Village Mall)

Treatment of

back pain neck pain headaches stress


chiropractic massage therapy spinal rehab traction

Spa Services

massage therapy steam therapy ayurvedic bodywork reiki, meditation

natural awakenings

April 2014


Kentucky Derby Benefit Bash


ut Side In (OSI) is a local non-profit that provides Equine Assisted Psychotherapy (EAP) to at-risk youth, adults, and veterans, treating a wide variety of emotional, behavioral, and mental health issues. EAP is not just about riding; clients learn about themselves and others by participating in structured activities with horses. With the tremendous growth the facility has experienced, OSI now has 25 horses, 2 additional therapists, 4 equine specialists, over 25 volunteers, an outdoor riding ring, and a lengthy waiting list of clients. A popular OSI fundraiser will make it possible to break ground on a heated indoor arena, with classroom, indoor grooming stalls, and viewing area, to benefit the new and effective therapy techniques utilized at OSI. The Kentucky Derby Benefit Bash will be held on May 3 at the Out Side In facility, located in Grand Haven at 12511-152nd Ave, and will include thoroughbred horse rides, a silent auction, demonstrations and a live feed of the Kentucky Derby Race. Check the website for details.

Party for The Planet


celebration of conservation, recycling and our natural world! Party for The Planet takes place on May 3 from 10am-3pm at John Ball Zoo located at 1300 W. Fulton St in Grand Rapids. Join over 20 conservationminded, green practicing organizations for a fun day of learning how we can help save our earth’s resources right here in your own backyard. Festivities will include zoo keeper talks, science experiments, giveaways, demonstrations and more. How do ponds keep themselves clean? How do you make your own green laundry detergent? Come on out to John Ball Zoo to find out. The Zoo is open daily 10am-4pm, but the Party for The Planet activities will take place until 3pm. Only $5 for Adults and $4 for kids. For more information and details, call Krys at 616-336-4374 or email

Best Of Houzz 2014 Award


lign Design LLC of Grand Rapids has been awarded “Best Of Houzz” by Houzz, the leading platform for home remodeling and design. Align Design LLC specializes in commercial and residential design and was chosen by the more than 16 million monthly users that comprise the Houzz community. Align Design is honored to have received the award for the second year in a row. “Houzz provides homeowners with the most comprehensive view of home building, remodeling and design professionals, empowering them to find and hire the right professional to execute their vision,” said Liza Hausman, vice president of community for Houzz. “We’re delighted to recognize Align Design LLC among our “Best Of” professionals for customer satisfaction as judged by our community of homeowners and design enthusiasts who are actively remodeling and decorating their homes.” Whether you are planning a small makeover, or a major remodel, Align Design LLC offers services that meet any need. From conceptualizing and planning a new home or remodel, to a simple, color consultation, Align Design can help you actualize your vision. Shawn Merkel, Interior Designer and Owner of Align Design LLC. 616-916-1071 See ad page 13 & 38.

Powerstrips for Pain


r. Katrina Ryan of Forevergreen International has suffered from severe migraines, carpel tunnel and arthritis for many years and has never really found anything to help the pain until a friend sent a sample of the FGXpress Powerstrip in the mail. She put the strip on during a carpel tunnel flair up and within minutes the pain was completely gone. With billions of people worldwide suffering from chronic pain, there is finally a long lasting alternative. Powerstrips are a unique, all natural patch that is a fusion of ancient herbs and modern technology that are Doctor Formulated FDA Listed Class 1 Medical Device that relieves pain and inflammation for 48 hours or more. People are using powerstrips for severe back pain, TMJ, broken bones, menstrual cramps, migraines and they are even safe for kids and pets. Now retired as a Naturopath, Katrina is focusing her energy on sharing this amazing breakthrough technology to help out others that are suffering. For more info please visit or feel free to call Katrina for your FREE sample, 269-214-4432 or email at See ad page 38.


West Michigan Edition


unmatched efficiencies... uncompromising quality

Home Renovations Aggravate Childhood Asthma


ew research suggests that renovation planning should involve more than just picking the right colors and styles; doing it right may help prevent childhood respiratory conditions. Researchers from St. Louis University, in Missouri, linked home renovations with increased wheezing, asthma and chronic coughing among children living in the home. The study, published in the American Journal of Public Health, followed 31,049 children between the ages of 2 and 14 years old from seven Chinese cities over a two-year period. Previous research has also reached a similar conclusion, identifying some specific materials responsible for increased childhood respiratory disorders. A Russian study of 5,951 children ages 8 to 12 found that increased asthma and wheezing were related to recently completed painting, as well as the installation of new linoleum flooring, synthetic carpets, particleboard and wall coverings. That study, published in the same journal states, “Exposure levels are the highest during and shortly after painting, but low levels of exposure may remain for several months. Wooden furniture, as well as painted or varnished and new furniture, is likely to emit chemical substances.” A 2002 study of New York children published in the Journal of Urban Health found similar results.



ranscendental Meditation (TM) has a dramatic healing effect on people with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and can also result in lower blood pressure, according to two new studies. TM—a technique to avoid distracting thoughts, decrease stress and promote a state of relaxed awareness—reduced PTSD symptoms in combat veterans by as much as 50 percent in just eight weeks, according to a study from Georgetown University, in Washington, D.C., published in the journal Military Medicine. The veterans also reported decreased depression and improved quality of life, with a greater ability to come back to their civilian lives after returning from duty. Vietnam War vets randomly assigned to TM sessions at a Denver Veterans Center also experienced greater reductions in alcohol usage, insomnia and depression than those in conventional counseling. At the conclusion of a landmark three-month study, 70 percent of the meditating veterans felt they no longer required the services of the center. A separate American Heart Association report on the general U.S. population showed that the practice of TM generally reduced systolic blood pressure in subjects by five points and diastolic by three points, enough to put many of them into normal range. Previous clinical trials have shown that lower blood pressure through TM practice is associated with significantly lower rates of death, heart attack and stroke. TM is usually practiced for 15 to 20 minutes twice a day by sitting comfortably and focusing on an individually selected word or series of words.

new construction & remodeling using green building products & practices. kyle hass 616-299-5815

At the end of YOUR ROPE? Manage your stress and enjoy new health and well-being! 8-WEEK MINDFULNESS BASED STRESS REDUCTION PROGRAM: Free Information Sessions: March 24-April 3 8-Week Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction Courses Begin: April 7, 8, 9 & 10 Classes are offered on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday evenings and Wednesday morning CALL 616-361-3660

natural awakenings

April 2014


Olive Leaf Outperforms Diabetes Drug


live leaf may provide nature’s answer to diabetes treatment. A recent study from the University of Auckland, in New Zealand, suggests that olive leaf extract can help reduce insulin resistance and increase insulin production by beta cells in the pancreas. The researchers tested 46 middle-aged, obese adults at risk for developing metabolic syndrome-related Type 2 diabetes. In the double-blind, placebo-controlled study, olive leaf extract outperformed the diabetes drug metformin and “significantly improved insulin sensitivity and pancreatic beta-cell secretory capacity,” according to the researchers. Insulin helps escort glucose into the body’s cells.

Supplements Could Save $70 Billion in Medical Costs


n a Frost & Sullivan study report authored by Christopher Shanahan and Robert de Lorimier, Ph.D., the use of dietary supplements, including B vitamins, phytosterols and dietary fiber, could reduce the cost of treating coronary artery disease in the U.S. by nearly $50 billion over the next seven years. In addition, healthcare costs related to diabetes, vision problems and osteoporosis could be reduced by nearly $20 billion collectively with the use of certain supplements. The projections were based on cost-benefit analysis comparing a series of scenarios to assess the effect on overall disease management costs if an identified high-risk population were to avoid costly medical events by increasing their intake of dietary supplements purchased out-of-pocket versus no supplement usage. “The healthcare system spends a tremendous amount of money treating chronic disease, but has failed to focus on ways to reduce those costs through prevention,” says Steve Mister, president of the Council for Responsible Nutrition Foundation. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, only 3 percent of U.S. healthcare costs are spent on the prevention of chronic diseases.


West Michigan Edition

Tomatoes Prevent and Even Treat Liver Disease


omatoes are widely known for their outstanding antioxidant content, anti-inflammatory and cancerfighting properties, plus benefits to heart health. Now, research from the U.S. Department of Agriculture Human Nutrition Research Center, at Tufts University, in Boston, Massachusetts, has found that consuming tomatoes—particularly their lycopene content—can also help prevent and even treat both liver disease and cancer of the liver. The researchers combed through 241 studies and scientific papers to connect the dots. They report that lycopene up regulates the sirtuin 1 (SIRT1) protein, meaning it increases the number of receptors on cell surfaces, thereby increasing cellular response to it. SIRT1 activation is recognized to protect against obesity-induced inflammation and degeneration of the liver, explain the study’s authors. Lycopene was found to protect against fatty liver disease, liver fibrosis and the formation of cancer in the liver and lungs. Multiple studies have shown cooked tomatoes and tomato sauce offer increased bioavailability of healthful lycopene.

globalbriefs News and resources to inspire concerned citizens to work together in building a healthier, stronger society that benefits all.

Food Charter

United Nations Blueprints Sustainability Goals A new publication, Trade and Environment Review: Wake Up Before it is Too Late, from the United Nations Commission on Trade and Development, declares that transformative changes are needed in current food, agriculture and trade systems to increase diversity on farms, reduce use of fertilizer and other inputs, support small-scale farmers and create strong local food systems. Key indicators of needed transformation in agriculture include increased soil carbon content and better integration between crop and livestock production; more incorporation of agroforestry and wild vegetation; reduction in greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions of livestock production; reduction of GHG through sustainable peatland, forest and grassland management; optimization of organic and inorganic fertilizer use; reduction of waste throughout the food chains; changing dietary patterns toward climate-friendly food consumption; and reform of the international trade regime for food and agriculture. The report includes contributions from more than 60 international experts, including a commentary from the Institute of Agriculture and Trade Policy. Source:

Pick-Me-Up Books

be strong

1/2 Off Special Only $15 for an Introductory Class Sign Up Today!! Amy Oostveen

Mailbox Libraries Gain Worldwide Alice Mills smiles as she looks at the box that sits on her lawn in Hutchinson, Kansas, an act of kindness for neighbors and the community. Inside the box is a miniature library. Books sit on two shelves; the bottom with short stories for children and the top with novels for adults. After her children grew up and moved away from home, they took the books they wanted with them. The rest sat on a bookshelf collecting dust. “If they’re here, they’re not being read,” Mills says. The concept for the Little Free Library began in 2009 to promote literacy and the love of reading, as well as to build a sense of community, according to They are now popping up around the world in the United States, Bulgaria, Germany, Italy, Pakistan, Spain, Turkey and the Congo. A recent Pew Internet & American Life Project survey shows that Americans strongly value the role of public libraries in their communities, both for providing access to materials and resources and for promoting literacy and improving the overall quality of life. More than half used a public library in a one-year period, and 72 percent say they live in a “library household”. Most Americans say they have only had positive experiences at public libraries and value a range of library resources and services. National Library Week begins April 13.

616.723.7350 ~ 5366 Plainfield Ave NE, Grand Rapids, MI. 49525

Contributing source: natural awakenings

April 2014


globalbriefs Hot ‘n Sunny

Cheaper Solar Panels Spur Job Growth Solar industry jobs are up nearly 20 percent in the 14 months through November 2013 as cheaper panels and rising electricity rates spurred people to turn to solar, according to a report by the nonprofit Solar Foundation research group. At latest count, solar companies employ nearly 143,000 solar workers, up more than 23,000 from September 2012—a job growth rate that’s 10 times faster than the national average and is helping local economies, according to the foundation. The industry is expected to create 22,000 new jobs in 2014, although at a slower pace than 2013. Cuts of 8,500 positions are projected in the sector that generates electricity from fossil fuels. Solar firms surveyed in the report said that more than 50 percent of their business and homeowner customers turned to solar to save money, while nearly 23 percent said they invested in panels because costs are now comparable with utility rates. The report noted that the cost of solar equipment has fallen about 50 percent since the beginning of 2010, motivating more people to go green.

Porous Pavement

Widespread Use Awaits Cleaning Machines

Early Detection Saves Lives Thermography

Rainwater flows through porous pavement, allowing it to quickly reach soil, which helps keep pavement clearer from ice and snow in the winter and reduces the amount of pollutants that rain washes off of streets and into bodies of surface water. “It works about 50 percent of the time,” says David Drullinger, an environmental quality professional with the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality. He explains that dirt, sand and other debris get stuck inside the pavement; for it to be effective again, it must be cleaned. More machines capable of unclogging these road surfaces are needed before widespread installation is viable. As more contractors gain experience working with the new material, the more effective it may become. Several communities in Michigan already are adopting the use of porous pavement for its benefits. Source:

Stop Itching Within Seconds! Introducing DermaClear, the Amazing New Skin Repair Salve from Natural Awakenings TM

The addition of Thermography to the front line of breast health brings a great deal of good news for women.

Painless ~ No Compression ~ No Radiation

Call to Set up Your Appointment 3368 Beltline Ct NE, Grand Rapids 616-361-9221 12

West Michigan Edition

Our all natural personal skin care product brings comforting relief to sufferers of many skin irritations. DermaClear has proven to be effective against: • Shingles • Psoriasis • Eczema • Burns • Allergic Rash • Jock Itch • Stings • & more DermaClear will simply feel good putting it on. Cooling and soothing, the Calcium Montmorillonite/ Calcium Bentonite clay penetrates pores and open areas of the skin and pulls out toxins and inflammation. The proprietory blend of homeopathics go even deeper, address the root causes and assist to bring even deeper toxins to the surface.

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Elevate Your Well-Being & Resonate within Your Space

Heirloom Home

A Fresh Look at Furnishings that Last Why not expand on the spring tradition of home cleaning by appraising existing home furnishings and décor to see how rearrangements can freshen the whole presentation? Employing a few basic creative strategies will yield long-lasting beauty, cost savings, health benefits and utility, all adding up to enhanced sustainability. Secondhand items readily spruce up interiors when they are thoughtfully selected. Look for gently used, new-to-you items—ranging from furniture and lamps to accent pieces like pottery and wall art—at antique and thrift shops, yard and estate sales or via online forums such as and Seeking out fair trade items helps support a fair wage for artisans around the world. Plants enliven and beautify any space while cleaning indoor air, according to a recent study by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration and Associated Landscape Contractors of America. Plants cited as especially effective in removing formaldehyde, benzene and carbon monoxide from the air include bamboo palm, Chinese evergreen, English ivy, gerbera (African) daisy, chrysanthemum and peace lily. Pot them in used jars or other repurposed containers to conserve materials and add character and more personality to home décor. Overall balance is key. “An imbalanced room has large furniture grouped together at one end and lightweight furniture and bare walls at the other,” says professional designer Norma Lehmeier Hartie, author of Harmonious Environment: Beautify, Detoxify & Energize Your Life, Your Home & Your Planet. “The effect is like being on a tilting boat in a storm.” Furniture arrangements are best when they allow light to flow through spaces with ample allowance for moving about the room. The ideal setup facilitates worktable projects and small-group conversations. Round tables help make everyone feel like they belong, according to green living expert Annie Bond. Sustainable kitchen wares are often the classiest. Sturdy pots, pans and kettles, like Le Creuset and Picquot Ware, may offer replacement parts and lifetime guarantees; Bialetti and Bodum coffee makers and Littala glassware are durable and long-lasting. While some may cost more upfront, their longevity saves money over time. Then there’s always grandma’s iron skillet.

Complete Interior Design Services that align your physical space with the personal expression of who you are. ~ Feng Shui ~ Green Design ~ Holistic Design ~ Repurposing of your existing treasures

Shawn Merkel, ASID 616-916-1071

Look Good & Be Healthy

Did you know the products you put on your skin also have a huge impact on our environment?

Additional sources: and

Offering makeup, bodycare & cleaning products that are: ~ Organic ~ ~ Cruelty Free ~ ~ Non-GMO ~ ~ Vegan ~ ~ Earth Friendly ~

Circle Pines Center Summer Camp Serving locally-sourced, organic foods while teaching peace, social justice, environmental stewardship and cooperation as a way of life. For More Information: Contact: 269.623.5555 or

Session I July 6-July 19 Session II July 20-July 26 Session III July 27-Aug 9

_______________________ “I have never seen so much talent for working with and engaging children!” - Camper Parent

959 Lake Dr. SE, Suite 2, GR, MI. 49506 Second Floor of the Blackport Bldg

616.419.8115 Wed & Fri 10-5, Thurs 10-7, Sat 10-3

natural awakenings

April 2014


Great Lakes, Great Lighthouses by Amanda Merritt


e have been deemed the mitten of the United States, and though during this winter that mitten concept hit a little too close to home with the amount of days we had to actually wear mittens, the coming seasons bring us right back to the title we might rather claim, the Great Lakes State. Those great lakes are prominent on any map of our country, and a true icon of our state. However, if you zoom in on that map and take a closer look at those lakes, you will find over 115 little treasures sprinkled along the coast of the lakes in Michigan, the great lighthouses of the Great Lakes. Those lighthouses, built anywhere from 1825 (Fort Gratiot Lighthouse in Port Huron) to 1989 (Manning Memorial Light in Empire), were initially erected to mark dangerous coastlines, hazardous shoals, reefs, and safe entries to harbors, and have also assisted in aerial navigation. Though most are now rendered useless, they still stand as some of the greatest highlights of the Great Lakes and shed light into Michigan’s yesteryear. Michigan’s 3,126 miles of coastal coverage on the Great Lakes puts us second in coastal coverage only to Alaska 14

West Michigan Edition

A couple are worth a visit purely for their unique structure like the Huron Lightship in Port Huron which was the last operating lightship on the lakes when retired in 1970 or the William Livingston Memorial Lighthouse on Belle Isle made purely of marble. Some of the lighthouses host catwalk piers begging to be walked like the Grand Haven Pier Lighthouse in Grand Haven or the St. Joseph North Pier Light in St. Joseph. A few are a feast for the eyes because of their grandiose appearance such as Old Mackinaw Point Light in Mackinaw City. Like the Grand Island East Channel Light in Munising, some offer a surrounding landscape more beautiful than you thought possible of Michigan. And then some offer a challenging trek to see the lighthouse like Crisp Point Light tucked away in Newberry or the 14 Mile Point Lighthouse, north of Ontonagon, that requires a hike miles long through the woods to see the remains of the grand brick structure that once was before it was accidentally set on fire. Several lighthouses are now on the grounds of State Parks, such as the Grand Traverse Lighthouse in the Leelanau State Park, the Big Red Lighthouse in the Holland State Park, and Big Sable Point Light in the Ludington State Park. Four lighthouses (Big Bay Point Lighthouse in Big Bay, Jacobsville Lighthouse in Lake Linden, Sand Hills Lighthouse in Ahmeek and Whitefish Point Light Station in Paradise, all of which are in the Upper Peninsula) now sport a unique accommodation option as Bed and Breakfasts. At least ten of the surviving lighthouses (such as Tawas Point Light in Tawas Point State Park, DeTour Reef Lighthouse off the shore of DeTour Village and 40 Mile Point Lighthouse north of

who boasts the most in the US. With a geographical setting as so, Michigan was essentially surrounded by a major highway for transportation, migration and trade, meaning safe navigation of the lakes has always been a high priority. Though there is no certain record, historians note there may have been as many as 247 lighthouses in Michigan at some point in time. With time and technology, that number has greatly decreased, but many of the beaming structures do still remain and are legends far worth visiting. Some are worth visiting just to take in their quaint structure such as W h i t e R iv e r L i g h t Station in Whitehall or Port Sanilac Light in Port Sanilac. Some deserve a visit for their p r e s t i g i o u s t ow e r s like New Presque Isle Lighthouse in Presque Isle. A few require a trip for the opportunity to climb to the top of a tower like Little Sable Point in Mears or McGulpin’s Point in Mackinaw City.Fort Gratiot Lighthouse - Port Huron, MI

Rogers City) offer the opportunity for lighthouse enthusiasts or vacationers to take on the role of lightkeeper during the tourist season. Lightkeepers today are often responsible for greeting visitors and providing them with historical information about the light station, working in the gift shop, light house museum and pilot house and keeping the buildings neat and clean. Some of these opportunities are on a volunteer basis while others require a fee and/or a membership to certain lighthouse keepers associations or historical societies. Michigan is a vastly beautiful state without the lighthouses, but each lighthouse adds just a bit more to the beauty. We are lucky to host the Great Lakes and the great lighthouses that come with them, all of which give us so much to see right here in our own state. At any given location in Michigan, you are always within 85 miles of a Great Lake, and therefore, you are likely close to a lighthouse too. Maybe it’s time to toss aside our mittens and set out to celebrate the beauty and the rich history our Great Lakes State has to offer one great lighthouse at a time. After all, be it the mitten or the Great Lakes State, we have much to be proud of. Amanda Merritt is a frequent contributor to Natural Awakenings Magazine. You can contact her at

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April 2014


Masters of

a g o Y tes and i iP la i Ch Ta


West Michigan Edition


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Qigong Steps Up Vitality and Serenity

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i” (pronounced chee) refers to the life force or vital energy present in all things throughout the universe while “gong” means dedicated effort or steady practice of a skill. Qigong is the art of working intensely with this energy, cultivating life force. Acupuncture physician and qigong instructor Walter Hayley, in Bonita Springs, Florida, became passionate about qigong while working as a stockbroker in need of stress relief. He compares qigong’s movement of energy in the body to water running through a hose: “Qi is concentrated in channels throughout the body. Think of the qi as water and those channels as a garden hose branching out to every aspect of the individual. Stress, whether physical or emotional, can kink the hose. Qigong helps get the kinks out,” he explains. “It relaxes the body, letting energy flow more efficiently, allowing the body to heal itself.” Qigong styles vary, but Hayley remarks that most involve slow movement, focused awareness and special breathing techniques. Many describe

the practice as a moving meditation. Qigong teacher Judith Forsyth, in Mobile, Alabama, says, “It’s often described as the mother of tai chi. When the quiet, internal energy art of qigong mixed with the powerful external martial arts, it developed into tai chi.” She emphasizes that the focus of qigong is less on its physical mechanics and more on understanding how the vital force moves through the body and can be used to enhance health and longevity. Inside the body, there’s an integrated network of subtle energy centers that international Qigong Master Robert Peng believes are connected to the capacity for genuine happiness. The goal is to awaken and pack these centers with qi. “By repeating slow, gentle movements over and over, you can develop the body’s capacity to draw qi from the universe. It can be stored in these centers and later channeled back through the body to empower your daily activities,” explains Peng, author of The Master Key: The Qigong Secret for Vitality, Love, and Wisdom.

natural awakenings

April 2014


He focuses on three of the body’s big energy portals: the “third eye”, located between the eyebrows; the “heart center”, at the center of the chest on the sternum and the “sea of qi”, just below the navel. The idea is that when energy is accessed in these three centers, specific spiritual qualities are accessed: wisdom, love and vitality (respectively). Harmonizing all three is ideal. Peng advises that when these essential elements are woven together in balance, dynamic happiness is possible. “You begin to project more wisdom, love, vitality, inspiration and peacefulness. Conversations flow more smoothly. Your life becomes more productive, meaningful and serene,” he says. “Whatever the challenges encountered, you’ll be better equipped to deal with them, while remaining inwardly content.” Forsyth was first guided to qigong when the prescribed rest, drugs, exercise and physical therapy following an accident left her with lingering neck and back problems. She recalls, “After eight weeks of practice, I experienced significant physical improvement, not

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West Michigan Edition

By adding qigong to their daily routines, children learn to channel energy and enhance concentration; office workers reduce stress; seniors enhance balance and quality of life; and caregivers and midwives advance abilities to help others. ~ The National Qigong Association only where I had considerable pain, but in my overall energy level, ability to sleep and the condition of my skin and hair. The peace and harmonizing meditation benefits of qigong were also affecting me positively in other ways. I became less worried, less of a perfectionist, less stressed out and began to experience more joyfulness.” While all styles benefit overall health, specific qigong exercises may be prescribed for specialized needs, from

athletic conditioning to management of chronic conditions such as arthritis, hypertension or cancer. The gentle movements can be performed by almost anyone at any age and ability level, even those confined to a chair or bed. “Qigong speaks to the body and the body then addresses the condition,” Hayley remarks. The experts advise that qigong is best practiced every day, even if for just five minutes. “A group class offers a synergy that a home practice lacks, but the more important practice is at home,” observes Hayley. Some personal instruction is ideal so the practitioner receives feedback, but books and videos make qigong accessible to everyone, everywhere. Hayley reminds newbies, “Just be patient. If one form doesn’t suit you, remember there are thousands of different forms to try.” Peng’s advice to beginners is, “Be happy! Think of the exercise as lighthearted play and remember to smile as you move.” Meredith Montgomery is the publisher of Natural Awakenings Mobile/Baldwin, AL (

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Q& A with Master Teacher

Gabriel Halpern by Viki Distin

Gabriel Halpern recently offered a weekend workshop at Cascade Yoga Studio in Grand Rapids. He taught on a variety of practices including a workshop for teachers, inversions for those who fear going upside down, backbends and a pranayama class. Viki Distin, owner of the studio asked Gabriel about beginning a yoga practice, especially about honoring your body, alignment and intentions for practicing. When beginning a yoga practice, I assume that some people do not realize that you can get hurt in yoga. Would you say that keeping the body safe is the primary reason for focusing on alignment? Ahimsa is the first yogic principle (yama), is it not? So the accent on harmlessness is there at the very beginning. Even if a newbie is unaware of this at the outset, the teacher’s responsibility is to mention this right away, first class. And then bring the student’s attention to how skillfully they are working with this principle throughout the session. I know many teachers will tell students to “honor their body”. What does this mean exactly? Noticing that the breath is labored or tension in the face may mean they have gone over their edge but muscles shaking may not necessarily be a bad sign, right? Honor the body means to me to respect your boundaries. Finding the balance between under stretching (escapism) and over stretching (loss of the center through exhibitionism) is tricky and constantly changing pose to pose and day to day. Not remembering any past way your body was, nor anticipating some ideal state you hope to get to some day. Instead just being with where you are on the mat in the moment is the way to have an experience of “living absorption.” Lack of breath control is a sign that mastery has not yet come. Tension in the face also sounds like the student is working towards equanimity but not there yet. Anything one does well, one does easily. That ease ought to be reflected in a face and breath that are strain free.

Can you speak of how using proper alignment helps to honor the body and give an example? If the arches of the feet are either pronated or supinated, the weight bearing of the foot is no longer evenly distributed so the range of the defect gets transmitted to the knees, hips, low back, ribs, shoulders, neck, etc. The simple answer is form and function go together. The form of the human anatomy evolved in order to function in a certain way. If the form is distorted the function has to be off as well. So the alignment of the body helps to keep us safe in our “form”. Over the years, I have learned from you many alignment cues or nuances which have also helped me find a deeper pose. So while alignment keeps us from injury it can also serve to find more freedom and awareness within a pose? Mr. Iyengar says precision is truth and truth is freedom. I like that idea. Can you explain how aligning the body will create more flow through the nadi’s or the energetic currents? What if for example, a student goes too deeply in a pose to “feel like they are getting more opening”? A garden hose that has a kink in it does not allow the water to flow through smoothly. If you take out the knot then the water (energy) flows unimpeded. Each asana has a line of energy that is supposed to conform to a certain geometric shape. In lateral angle, from the back leg outer heel up the flank through the top fingertips can be aligned in such a manner as to make a beautiful diagonal line along the side body. Any presentation that does not conform to this, is in some way a “kink” in the energy flow and needs to be corrected or at least brought closer to the ideal form. How does awareness of subtle sensations or subtle alignment cues make a difference? Would you say that we “advance” in yoga by moving from the gross to the subtle, rather than by adding more poses to our repertoire? In any pose a student can track how initial attempts can only be surface. Until basic musculo-skeletal awareness has been developed, the idea of moving awareness further inwards to breath and nervous system is a far cry. But until one does that, the next layer of perceiving yoga as a method of studying consciousness does not dawn. “Yoga is movement of awareness from gross, to subtle, to secret (inner most)”. BKS Iyengar Last question regarding working with subtleties. The yogi’s tell us that we already have everything we need inside of us. So is the problem that what we are looking for so subtle that we just can’t feel it yet? Only because of habitually looking in the wrong direction... away from our Essence Self. Visit for more information on Gabriel Halpern and details of his upcoming workshops. Viki Distin, Instructor, Founder and Owner of Cascade Yoga Studio, 5060 Cascade Rd, Grand Rapids, MI. 616-464-1610. See ad page 16 & 18.

natural awakenings

April 2014


routine. You grow a strong bond with your home.” Securing a much smaller dwelling than what we originally had designs on can lead to a lifetime of savings. With less space to furnish, heat, cool, light, clean and maintain, we can enjoy greater financial freedom, less stress and more time for fun.

2. Deciding Where to Live


SAVE BIG Five Eco-Friendly Life Decisions that Can Actually Save Us Money by Crissy Trask


very pivotal life decision, from choosing where we live to eating healthier, can support our best interests environmentally, as well. The good news is that it is possible to afford a sustainable way of life. Eco-friendly choices for housing, vehicles and food— generally perceived as expensive for the average individual or family—often are not only attainable when pursued in a thoughtful way, but can actually save us money compared to maintaining the status quo.

1. Buying a Home

When considering a move to a new place, we often find out how much house we can manage and then proceed to invest to the hilt. But if hitting our spending limit will leave a deficit in the amount of green and healthy home features and furnishings we can achieve, we could end up with a residence that makes neither financial nor 20

West Michigan Edition

ecological sense, and isn’t good for our health. A solution is to scale back on costly square footage. Spending 25 to 40 percent less than we think we can on a smaller home provides more possibilities when planning the renovation budget, enabling us to create a home that is more deeply satisfying. Nicole Alvarez, an architectural designer with Ellen Cassilly Architect, in Durham, North Carolina, who blogs at, says that if we value quality over quantity, place over space and living more intentionally in every aspect of our lives, we are ready for a small home. Occupying less space has profoundly influenced her daily life and happiness. Alvarez has found, “When space is limited, everything has a function and a purpose. Everything has to be intentional. Over time, as you grow in the home, you make small modifications to personalize it more to adjust to your

Urban, suburban or rural, where we live incurs long-term repercussions on the natural environment. Choosing an established community within or close to an urban center tends to be more protective of air, water and land quality than living in a distant, car-dependent suburb, yet many families feel either drawn to or resigned to the suburbs for the lower housing prices. But as Ilana Preuss, vice president at Washington, D.C.-based Smart Growth America, explains, “There is more to housing affordability than how much rent or mortgage we pay. Transportation costs are the second-biggest budget item for most families. In locations with access to few transportation choices, the combined cost of housing and transportation can be more than 60 percent of the total household budget. For families with access to a range of transportation choices, the combined cost can be less than 40 percent.” In most suburbs, where the only practical transportation choice is a personal vehicle, dependency on a car takes a toll on us financially and physically. Driving a personal vehicle 15,000 miles a year can cost about $9,122 annually in ownership and operating expenses, according to AAA’s 2013 Your Driving Costs report, and hours spent daily sitting behind the wheel being sedentary is eroding our health. Lack of transportation options is a leading detriment to the nation’s collective wellness, according to the federal agency Healthy People. Sustainable cities provide many transportation options, including public buses and trains, car-sharing services and all forms of ride sharing; and perhaps most importantly, they are bike- and pedestrian-friendly. Choosing communities that make it possible to reduce driving and even go car-free

much of the time can save us money, reduce stress and improve our health.

3. Choosing a Car

We know two primary facts about cars: They are expensive and those with internal combustion engines pollute during operation. Still, many of us need one. Reducing the total impact and burden of owning a car can be as simple as prioritizing fuel efficiency. It helps that fuel-sippers now come in more sizes than just small, yet small subcompacts remain a good place to start our research because of their budget-friendly prices and high fuel economy. A subcompact that averages 32 miles per gallon (mpg) and has a sticker price below $15,000 can save us so much money compared with a top-selling compact SUV—upwards of $16,000 over five years, according to—that if we need a larger vehicle on occasion, we can more easily afford to rent one. Hybrid electric vehicles (HEV), both small and midsized, can be an even better choice, averaging 41 mpg. Cost comparisons show that an HEV can save a heavily travelling city driver nearly $1,000 in fuel costs annually versus a comparably sized conventional gasolinepowered car. Although a 2014 midsized HEV has an average suggested retail price of $28,431, the category has been around long enough to create a market in previously owned vehicles. A used hybrid that is just two years old can cost up to 25 percent less than a new one.

4. Buying American

According to Consumer Reports, many shoppers prefer to buy products made in the USA, but with more than 60 percent of all consumer goods now

produced overseas, finding American goods is not always easy. The good news is that buying American doesn’t mean only buying American made. We back the U.S. economy and jobs when we purchase used items that have been renewed or repurposed by enterprising citizens. Creative reuse supports new and existing businesses that collect, clean, sort, recondition, refurbish, remanufacture, update, refinish, reupholster, repair, tailor, distribute and sell used parts, materials and finished goods. Sarah Baird, director of outreach and communications of the Center for a New American Dream, an organization working to shift consumption away from wasteful trends, loves the history of used items. She says, “An item that has already lived one life has a story to tell, and is infinitely more interesting than anything newly manufactured.” Another reward is the big savings afforded by previously owned durable goods; not even America’s big-box discount retailers can beat these genuine bargains. Of course, not everything is available in the used marketplace, but when it makes sense, we can proudly know that our purchases support American ingenuity and workers.

5. Getting Healthy

Going green is healthy in innumerable ways. In addition to driving less, banning toxic products from our household cupboards and dinner plates is another solid place to start on the road to improved well-being for ourselves and the planet. Toxic consumer products pollute the planet, from manufacture through use and disposal. They aren’t doing us any favors. The U.S. Environmental Pro-

tection Agency reports that the average human body now contains an estimated 700 industrial compounds, pollutants and other chemicals due to exposure to toxic consumer products and industrial chemicals. After researching proper local disposal of such hazards, replace them on future shopping forays with safer choices. It’s an investment in our health that can save untold pain and money and pay off big time in avoiding health problems ranging from cancer, asthma and chronic diseases to impaired fertility, birth defects and learning disabilities according to the Safer Chemicals, Healthy Families Coalition. To reduce exposure to the toxins that are commonly sprayed on conventional crops, select sustainable and organic versions of foods to prepare at home whenever possible. Such choices help keep both our bodies and the environment healthy and can be surprisingly affordable compared with eating out and consuming prepackaged convenience foods. By substituting whole foods for prepared foods, cooking more meals at home and practicing good eating habits—like eating less meat and downsizing portions—the average person can enjoy high-quality food for $7 to $11 per day. This matches or falls below what the average American daily spends on food, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Considering that diet-related diseases can cost afflicted families thousands of dollars a year, better food choices can make us not only healthier, but wealthier, too. Crissy Trask is the author of Go Green, Spend Less, Live Better. Connect at

natural awakenings

April 2014


Green Housing Yields Social and Security Benefits


n Large-home inhabitants may go all day without seeing one another and communication and togetherness can suffer. Family members living in small homes can more easily cultivate strong communications and cohesion. n Dense neighborhoods encourage interaction and cooperation among neighbors, nurturing a cohesive community that can reward us with social connections, collective responsibility and assistance when needed.

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n Small homes can encourage disconnecting from technology and getting outside. When the TV can be heard throughout the house, parents are more likely to urge outdoor playtime for kids. n The footprint of a small dwelling uses a fraction of the buildable lot, leaving more outdoor space for planting gardens that can nourish bodies and souls. Source:

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April 2014



Community Gardens

Sowing Seeds that Grow Long After the Season Ends by Kim Racette Rachel Lee, Director of East Hills ive her an opening and Lorraine Beloncis, Senior Enrichment/ Council of Neighbors, pointed out that Community Fitness Coordinator for even though the fee is nominal for a Kentwood Parks and Recreation will spot in the Cornelius Kos Community/ tell you that community gardens are so School Garden installed last year at much more than just a place to plant Congress Elementary in Grand Rapids, and harvest. “We’ve had groups ranging it’s an important part of a group endeavor. from retirees and refugees to local kids “Families fill out a contract with the all working in the same garden, and it neighborhood association,” Lee says. “It fosters a terrific sense of involvement “It was great to see students and belonging,” she explained with who thought they didn’t liked enthusiasm. The garden, located in Veteran’s Memorial Park in Kentwood, tomatoes try them because was created after numerous residents they helped plant them in our asked for one. “They wanted to grow their Community/School Garden. own food, but didn’t have the space or The children were so much resources themselves,” stated Beloncis. more willing to step out of their Sections of the garden are rented for the comfort zone because of their season, typical of many of the community gardens found in West Michigan that investment in the growth of the have been developed through area parks, fruit.” Third Grade Teacher Renee churches, neighborhoods and schools. Howard, Congress Elementary



West Michigan Edition

defines the rules and responsibilities, including respecting the school hours so there won’t be disruption when the kids are there.” She agreed that a community garden does more for the local neighborhood than just provide a spot to grow fresh fruits and vegetables. “It has been a great learning tool for the students, helping them to understand the connection to growing and caring for plants that become food,” she said with a smile. “It has also beautified the school grounds and the kids are so respectful of the garden. It’s been an amazing resource for all of us.” The Treehouse Community Garden, located on Logan two streets south of Wealthy, will be starting its third growing season soon. Developed by Matthew Fowler, along with his wife Kristin and fellow members of the Intentional Christian Community in their neighborhood, said his group couldn’t have done it without support from other community members and area businesses. “Our only local source back then for food was a Family Dollar and this area had been deemed a food desert,” Fowler said ruefully. “Families needed access to fresh food, and to learn how to grow it for themselves. Churches, lumber companies, and nurseries gave us tremendous support.” Fowler, who has since become a Master Gardener through Michigan State University, also pointed out the special relationship kid’s gain by working in a garden. “Getting them into God’s creative nature is so good! We have kids learning about worms and compost,” he said with a smile. “A lot of kids really didn’t know you could grow strawberries in the ground.” The American Community Gardening Association (ACGA), whose mission it is to increase and enhance community gardening and greening across the United States and Canada, suggests that starting a community garden takes a village. They have compiled a 10 point checklist, from organizing a meeting of interested people to putting in place a communication plan. These guidelines strongly encourage getting the help from an expert when starting a community garden. Owner of DLP Designs and Landscape Designer David Proulx, who worked with Congress Elementary and has helped many other community groups over the past 15 years,

and considering who counseled that success demands putting a solid “A Community Garden provides will use the harvest. What else is plan in place before an activity that people of all learned while working any digging begins. “You need a solid year ages can enjoy. From first i n a c o m m u n i t y of planning before time planters to seasoned garden? “Important putting a shovel in h a r v e s t e r s , C o m m u n i t y life lessons are being the ground,” Proulx Gardens enrich our lives taught in the garden, explained. “Bringing by providing a connection including sustainability, and appreciating and together all the parties to the plants, the land and connecting with nature involved, listening to each other, developing to each other.” Lorraine in an authentic way,” a well-organized plan Beloncis Senior Enrichment/ said Bridget Cheney to follow, identifying C o m m u n i t y F i t n e s s M.Ed., Principal at one project manager, Coordinator for Kentwood Congress Elementary. a n d t h e n w o r k i n g Parks and Recreation “The students plant feverishly to discover seeds as soon as March all the different talents and tend the garden brought to the table until early November. is just the beginning.” Determining a They get a real sense of the responsibilities location also needs to be started early, that come with the changing seasons, and someone on the team will need to and seeing something through from be able to speak with any government beginning to end.” Cheney added that body that might be involved. “You need seeing the impact of the garden extending to know the history of the site, and get in beyond its physical boundaries has been touch with the soil,” he said. “Then you gratifying. “It is more than a simple place have to get permission to dig.” Proulx to grow plants because it really became a also suggested positioning the site in a community connection for us. We have highly visible location to keep it safe, been able to extend new relationships shooting for 12 hours of sunlight each day, into many other areas that benefit both

the school and community.” Grand Rapids Public Schools Spokesman John Helmholdt said with a smile, “We have seen the visible action taken in planting a community garden can be a tremendous catalyst to encouraging even more positive changes in a neighborhood.” For more information about American Community Gardening Association visit Pictures provided by Treehouse Community Garden. Kim Racette has written for many publications in West Michigan, and enjoys gardening at her home in Kentwood.

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natural awakenings

April 2014



Some Say Solar Has Arrived by Robert Rafson


here has been much discussion about the decreasing cost of solar energy, the need to go renewable, and how important renewable energy is to our economy and environment. One might say there has been almost too much discussion about the politics of solar and not enough on the cost and benefit for an individual home or business.

To set this in prospective, the price of solar has been dropping each year as the size of the industry has been increasing. Two years ago, China entered the solar panel manufacturing market and doubled the world’s production capacity. That being said, China’s annual production capacity is about equal to all of the solar panels that have been installed in the US to date and is about 10% of the world’s

Economicology: How Wind Energy Can Power a Cleaner, Stronger America Thursday, April 24, 2014 / 4 - 5pm Aquinas College Performing Arts Center Free Admission / Reception Follows

Tom Kiernan CEO, American Wind Energy Association RSVP by April 15, 2014:


West Michigan Edition

installations. Germany has been the leader in this industry, but going forward the three big solar PV production countries will likely be China, Germany and the US. Michigan is presently number four in jobs related to Solar PV production and installation jobs in the US. This is because Michigan has some of the purest sand in the world and much of the high purity silica used in solar cell manufacturing worldwide is

18th Annual Wege Foundation Speaker Series

produced right here in Michigan. There are about 76,000 Clean Energy jobs in Michigan and about 6,300 are related to Solar PV (growing at a rate of 16% per year) according to the National Resource Council. Solar PV panels last 40+ years, meaning the levelized cost (assuming 20 years) of solar PV power is about $0.108/kWh and the utility $0.231/kWh for the same period. Solar PV is basically the same price as utility rates right now and the price of power it will generate will not increase, thus making solar a better investment. Another way to think of it is like this; if you purchase a system now, you will never have increasing power costs. What does this means to the consumer? The economics work better than ever. Residential Commercial $18,000 (4kW) $35,000 <5,400> <10,500> <11,900> ====== =======

(10kW) Renewable Energy tax credit (30%) Depreciation value (assumed 40% tax rate)


Net project cost


$700/yr $1,700/yr Avoided Electrical Expense ($0.14/kWh) (Total Electric Bill / KWh x $/kWh x 12 month) 6.5% 22%

Internal Rate of Return Assuming 5% per year increase in power rates

You can see the economy of scale and that commercial installations can depreciate the installation making them very viable, and as the projects get larger the return on investment gets better. As for some important factors that can reduce cost and improve project viability, ground mount installations can be cheaper than roof mount systems, foreign panels and other components can be cheaper than US manufactured, and some utilities and co-ops have wide variations in price and price structures which can lead to varying project viability. There are many other reasons for distributed renewable energy, some include grid stability, energy independence, trade balance, global warming, reduction in environmental contaminates, as well as positive economics. What else are you going to invest in right now that (even for a residence) will provide a stable 6.5% return on investment? The bottom line is the bottom line. Is 6.5% residential or 22% commercial return on investment enough to invest in solar, putting aside all the other important aspects of renewable energy? That decision is up to you. What is the future? The price of an installed system might drop a little more as the manufacturing becomes larger and more stable worldwide but not like the great reductions in the past few years. The present renewable energy investment tax credit runs through the end of 2016, but there are discussions about extending it for four more years. Reducing the incentive to 20% should still be enough to continue to support the growth in the industry, but there is no guaranty of this.

buttermilk JAMBOREE

Circle Pines Center June 13 - 15, 2014 Reverend Peyton’s Big Damn Band

Dar Williams Steppin In It

Anne Weiss Bill Grogan’s Goat Chase Potter Conklin Ceili Band Covert • DarlenYa Drew Nelson Dede & the Dreamers Edye Evans Hyde Elden Kelly • Fauxgrass Emma’s Revolution Chuy Negrete K. Jones & Benzie Playboys Lindsay Lou & Flatbellys Luke Winslow King Madcat Midnight Blues Journey Magdalen Fossum The Mainstays Rachael Davis Ralston Bowles Reverend Robert Jones Rick Chyme Rootstand • Sairuhnade SUN Ensemble Tony LaJoye •Tree City

Robert Rafson, P.E. NABCEP, President, Chart House Energy LLC. 200 Viridian Drive, Muskegon, MI 49440. GetSolar@, natural awakenings

April 2014


Take Responsibility for Your Health

Nature + Science = SOLUTIONS

For A Free Wellness Consultation CalCalll Today for your Free Wellness Consultation Essential Connection, Ltd.

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HOMEMADE ECO-CLEANERS DIY Recipes Keep Your Home Naturally Clean by Lane Vail


Gluten Free Items, Homeopathic Products, Vitamins, Essential Oils and Much More!! 9175 Cherry Valley Ave, Ste D Caledonia, MI. 616-891-0898


West Michigan Edition

mericans use 35 million pounds of toxic household cleaning products annually. According to the Children’s Health Environmental Coalition, in Los Angeles, traces of cleaning chemicals can be found throughout the human body within seconds of exposure, posing risks like asthma, allergies, cancer, reproductive toxicity, hormone disruption, neurotoxicity and death. Equally sobering is the decades of research suggesting a relationship between the overuse of powerful disinfectants and the rise of antibiotic-resistant super bacteria like methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), as well as concerns over these toxins entering water supplies and wildlife food chains. Cleaning product labels lack transparency, says Johanna Congleton, Ph.D., a senior scientist for the Environmental Working Group, because “manufacturers aren’t required to specify ingredients.” One approach to assure safe ingredients is do-it-yourself (DIY) products. For Matt and Betsy Jabs, the authors of DIY Natural Household Cleaners who blog at, creating homemade cleaners is a rewarding exercise in sustainability and simplicity. “We’re cutting through all the marketing and getting back to basics,” says Matt. Affordability is another benefit:

The Jabs’ homemade laundry detergent costs five cents per load, compared with 21 cents for a store brand. Annie B. Bond, a bestselling author and pioneering editor of the award-winning Green Guide, dispels a DIY myth: “What’s time-consuming isn’t making the cleaners; it’s making the decision to switch and figuring it all out,” she says.

Nine Basics

Find these multitasking ingredients in local groceries and health stores or online. White vinegar effectively cleans, deodorizes, cuts grease and disinfects against bacteria, viruses and mold. Castile soap in liquid or bar form serves as a biodegradable, vegetable-based surfactant and all-around cleaner (avoid mixing with vinegar, which neutralizes its cleansing properties). Baking soda cleans, whitens, neutralizes odors and softens water. It’s an excellent scrubbing agent for bathrooms, refrigerators and ovens. Borax, a natural mineral, improves the effectiveness of laundry soap. Although classified (as is salt) as a low-level health hazard that should be kept away from children and animals, borax is non-carcinogenic and isn’t absorbed through skin.

Washing soda, a caustic chemical cousin of baking soda, softens water and removes stains. Bond advises, “It’s a heavy duty cleaner as powerful as any toxic solvent,” so wear gloves.

vinegar, one cup of water and 15 drops of lemon oil in a spray bottle. Use it anywhere, including glass and mirrors. For serious disinfecting, follow with a hydrogen peroxide spray.

Bathroom soft scrub: Bond recommends creating a thick paste with liquid castile soap and a half-cup of baking soda. Scour tubs, showers and stainless steel surfaces with a sponge, and then rinse.

Hydrogen peroxide is considered an effective disinfectant and bleach alternative by the Environmental Protection Agency. Use it to whiten grout and remove stains.

Foaming hand/dish soap: Shake one cup of water, a quarter-cup of castile soap and 15 drops of essential oil in a foaming dispenser. Use in bathrooms and kitchens.

Toilet bowl cleaner: Sprinkle one cup of borax into the toilet at bedtime and then clean the loosened grime with a brush the next morning, advises Bond. Wipe outer surfaces with the all-purpose spray.

Dishwashing detergent: DIYNatural recommends mixing one cup of borax, one cup of washing soda, a half-cup of citric acid and a half-cup of coarse kosher salt. Leave it uncovered for several days, stirring often to prevent clumping. Cover and refrigerate. Use one tablespoon per load with a half-cup of citric acid in the rinse to combat streaks.

Wood polish: Bond recommends mixing a quarter-cup of vinegar or lemon juice with a few drops of olive and lemon oil.

Laundry detergent: Combine one cup of borax, one cup of washing soda and one 14-ounce bar of grated castile soap. Use one tablespoon per load, adding a half-cup of lemon juice to the rinse cycle. Prior to washing, use hydrogen peroxide as a stain remover (test first; it may lift color).

Carpet cleaner: Freshen rugs by sprinkling baking soda at night and vacuuming in the morning, suggests Bond. For deeper cleaning, combine one cup of vinegar and two-and-a-half gallons of water in a steam cleaner.

Essential oils derived from plants infuse cleaners with fragrance and boost germ-fighting power. Tea tree, eucalyptus and lavender oils all boast antibacterial, antiviral and antifungal properties. The Jabs advise that although they can be pricy, “The investment will pay for itself many times over.” Lemon juice or citric acid cuts through grease, removes mold and bacteria and leaves dishes streak-free. Coarse kosher salt helps soften dishwasher water and acts as a scouring agent.

Home Formulas

All-purpose cleaner: Homemade Cleaners: Quick-and-Easy Toxin-Free Recipes, by Mandy O’Brien and Dionna Ford, suggests combining one cup of



Read What Satisfied Consumers Have to Say

I cannot even begin to explain how great I feel since I started using Natural Awakenings Detoxified Iodine. I felt so much better the very first day. My energy has soared and my wrist is not hurting. I feel much more alert. ~ Kelli I have been using the detoxified iodine for at least six months and can say with all honesty that I feel more energy these days. I don’t drag around like I used to. I’m also improving my diet. ~ Lucille This product has improved my energy, increased my vitality and after additional research, I know it has many beneficial aspects for overall health. ~ John This is my second bottle and I have used the detoxified iodine faithfully from day one. The included directions are easy to follow. My energy level has increased, my sleep is more restful and my concentration has improved. Needless to say, I highly recommend this product. ~ Kathleen


Hard floor cleaner: Environmental Working Group’s DIY Cleaning Guide suggests combining a half-gallon of hot water with one cup of white vinegar in a bucket to mop.

Lane Vail is a freelance writer in South Carolina. Connect at

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natural awakenings

April 2014


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West Michigan Edition

Massage as Medicine

“The first wealth is health.” ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson

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hat if a simple hour of massage could do more for you than just take the pressures of the day away? What if it helped to combat cancer or to recover from a strained muscle in half the time, all while improving sleep, digestion and mood? What if these weren’t just “what if’s”? Massage not only feels good, but it can cure what ails you. Massage techniques have been practiced for thousands of years and within nearly every culture due to its incomparable healing abilities. Massage therapy offers a non-invasive, drug free and humanistic approach based on the body’s natural ability to heal itself. The healing secret lies within the increased circulation, allowing fresh oxygen and nutrients to seep into the body’s tissues and vital organs. It is estimated that nearly 90% of disease is stress-related, and massage therapy works as a tough fighting force at replacing stress with relaxation. It helps to decrease anxiety, lower blood pressure, improve recovery from injury, increase circulation, release endorphins, aid in better sleep and increase concentration. Want to reduce fatigue and get the energy you need to handle daily stressful situations? Massage therapy can do that too. It is a perfect elixir for great health, true relaxation, and mental peace. To learn more or to schedule an appointment, call 616-575-2040. KCL Massage Therapy, 4843 Cascade Rd SE in Grand Rapids. See ad page 31.

natural awakenings

April 2014



Backyard Birds and Butterflies Native Habitats Draw Critters and Delight Kids by Avery Mack


reating a backyard wildlife habitat provides valuable teaching moments. With planning and care, birds, bats, butterflies and bunnies can view yards as safe havens and sources for food, water and shelter, providing endless fascination. Josh Stasik, a father of three and owner of, in Syracuse, New York, sees firsthand how feeding winged wonders can be an inexpensive way to start a new family activity. “My mom taught me about flowers and bird feeders. I hope my kids will someday pass the information along to their children,” he says. Habitat plantings and available foods determine what creatures will visit.


West Michigan Edition

Hummingbird Nectar Recipe Measure one part ordinary white sugar to four parts water (no unhealthy red dye needed). Boil the water first, and then mix the nectar while the water is hot; the sugar will easily dissolve. Source:

“Native plants attract native bugs that are eaten by native birds and bats,” observes Stasik, noting that staff at extension services and garden centers can provide helpful advice. Based on his own research, Stasik knows, “Bird species have definite tastes in food. Bluebirds love mealworms. Hummingbirds like floral nectars. Orioles look for citrus fruit. Butterflies are eclectic sippers of both floral and citrus.” Hummingbirds pose particular appeal for kids and adults because they appear always on the move. map.html follows their migration sites. Videographer Tom Hoebbel, owner of TH Photography, outside Ithaca,

New York, builds birdhouses and nesting boxes with his kids. They also participate in the annual Christmas bird count for the Audubon Society (Birds.Audubon. org/Christmas-birdcount). The Great Backyard Bird Count, a joint project between nonprofits Audubon and the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, folbird photos courtesy of Susan lows in February Gottlieb, of Venice, California ( “In our yard, we have five nesting boxes made from reused wood. Once or twice a week, we check to see who lives there and how many eggs there are,” says Hoebbel. “So far, we’ve seen bluebirds, chickadees and house wrens.” He laments the rapid decline of bats in the Northeast due to pesticides killing bugs, the main course for birds and bats. “In the winter, bats live in caves, so we put one-by-one-foot boxes in the yard for their summer homes.” Warm evenings on the patio are more enjoyable when bats clean up the mosquito population; a single bat can eat as many as 1,000 in an hour. The monarch butterfly population is another favorite species in decline, with the spectacular annual migration on the verge of disappearing due to illegal deforestation, climate change, expansion of crop acreage and imposition of genetically modified plants that reduce the growth of native species. “You can help them by planting perennial milkweed in your garden,” advises Brande Plotnick, founder of Tomato Envy, in Jenkintown, Pennsylvania. Milkweed is the food of choice because it makes the caterpillars and butterflies toxic to birds and other predators. Also consider planting garden phlox, coneflower and lantana. Migrating monarchs live about nine months and fly up to 30 miles per hour. Plotnick also suggests planting an herb garden

that includes parsley. “Swallowtail butterflies will lay eggs on parsley, caterpillars hatch and feed on it, and eventually create a chrysalis,” she says. “You’ll be able to see the entire butterfly life cycle.” Rabbits add another dimension to backyard wildlife. Just as birds and butterflies need trees, bushes and plants to land on and hide in, bunnies need ground cover. The Virginia Department of Game and Fisheries counsels that brush piles should start with a base of large limbs, logs or stones to raise the floor above ground and create tunnels and escape routes, plus a home base. Top with smaller branches and maybe a recycled Christmas tree or dead plants. Encourage structural density and permanence with live vines. The resulting brush pile should be igloo-shaped and about six to eight feet tall and wide. Visit City ordinances or subdivision regulations might prohibit brush piles in ordinary yards. Find out how to gain certification as a wildlife habitat through the National Wildlife Federation at Rabbits can have as many as seven babies per litter, depending on the species. Make sure their space is sufficient. Before attracting bunnies to the yard, be aware of local predators—hawks, owls, coyote, dogs and stray cats. The brush pile may also attract other animals like skunks, raccoons and reptiles. A wildlife habitat is a fun, ongoing

learning experience. It calls on math skills for bird counts, geography to follow migration maps and woodworking to build homesites and feeding spots. It becomes a lesson in local ecology and the roles of native plants and animals. When children comprehend they can help save wildlife, it’s also a lesson in hope. Avery Mack is a freelance writer in St. Louis, MO. Connect via AveryMack@

Habitat Tips Recognize the basic needs of all wildlife; food, water, cover and safe places to raise young. 4 Determine the most desirable species to attract and learn their specific needs. 4 Evaluate current yard habitat conditions for missing elements. 4 Develop a plant list; select for wildlife value, emphasizing native plants suitable for the region. 4 Realize that habitat will grow larger and mature. 4 Certify the family’s backyard wildlife habitat through the National Wildlife Federation. Source: Education Department at Callaway Gardens, Pine Mountain, GA

April 20-26, 2014 Join us for a great week filled with events to educate, inspire & encourage acts for change to benefit our community and our earth.

Special Thank you to these Sponsors:

natural awakenings

April 2014


calendarofevents Visit for guidelines and to submit entries. All Calendar events must be submitted online by the 15th of the month prior to publication.

Denotes an event sponsored by Natural Awakenings Magazine West Michigan.

Shaded listings denote Earth Day related events.


Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction Free Info Session- 6:30pm. Learn to live your life more fully and effectively, one moment at a time. Manage your stress and take charge of your own health and well-being. 8-Week Program starts on 4/8. Call 616-361-3660 for info & to register. Free. Energy Touch Center, 1331 Lake Drive SE - Suite 100, Grand Rapids. Not So Beautiful Side of Skin Care- 6:30pm. Harvest Health presents Tammy Ball, licensed esthetician, to talk about the dangerous chemicals in many skin care products. Free. Harvest Health Foods, 6807 Cascade Road, Grand Rapids.


Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction Free Info Session- 9:30am. Learn to live your life more fully and effectively, one moment at a time. Manage your stress and take charge of your own health and wellbeing. 8-Week Program starts on 4/9, 9:30am. Call 616-361-3660 for info & to register. Free. Holistic Care Approach, 3368 E. Beltline Ct, Grand Rapids. Guided Meditation and Healing Circle- 7:008:00pm. Escape from stress and discover an inner world of calm, peace & joy through guided meditation, and energy healing from Healing in America-trained healers. $5 donation. Holistic Care Approach, 3368 Beltline Ct NE, Grand Rapids.


Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction Free Info Session- 6:30pm. Learn to live your life more fully and effectively, one moment at a time. Manage your stress and take charge of your own health and well-being. 8-Week Program starts on 4/10. Call 616-361-3660 for info & to register. Free. Women’s Health Center, 555 Midtowne, Grand Rapids.


Nutrition Class with Jessica Nelson, RDN11:00am-12:00pm. Top Super Foods for Health. $15 pre-register online or at studio. $20 walk in (day of class). A new Topic each Month. info@mibodhitree. com. Bodhi Tree Yoga & Wellness Studio, 208 W 18th Street, Holland.


Opening Your Yet Unopened Gifts- 10:00am. Denise Iwaniw is an author, sacred pipe carrier and Thunder Dreamer. Join us as Denise discusses the beauty of our unique gifts, as well as how to explore, accept, unfold, expand and share them with the world. Free. Unity of Greater Grand Rapids, 6025 Ada Drive, Ada.


West Michigan Edition


Spring Break Check Up- 4/7-4/12. Extended instructional hours and initial assessment appointments available at Sylvan Learning of Muskegon. Mention Natural Awakenings and get a $49 comprehensive assessment (a $200 value). Call Lisa at 231-799-0613 for more information. 8-Week Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction Program- 6:30pm & 9:30am. Through 4/10. Learn to live your life more fully and effectively, one moment at a time. Manage your stress and take charge of your own health and well-being. 8-Week MBSR Program developed at the Center for Mindfulness at UMass Medical School. 616-361-3660 for info and to register. $350.


Energy Healing: Master Key to Stress Reduction7:00pm. Learn how energy healing can enhance your life, promote self-healing and reduce stress in this Free 1 hour webinar.


Spring Break Escape- Sylvan Learning will be hosting a Spring Break Escape reading program at the Norton Shores Library for elementary students. Join us for a free afternoon of fun activities in the library and a healthy snack. Call Lisa Morgan at 231-799-0613 for more details and to RSVP. Healthseekers Class- 12:15-1:30pm. Brown-bag Lunch-and-Learn class with Dr. Ragini Pierce. Are your health challenges not responding to conventional treatments? Do you want help in pinpointing deeper causes of your pain and dysfunction that address body, mind, emotions and spirit? RSVP to 231670-0179. Free. Angel Touch Family Chiropractic. 4265 Grand Haven Road. Muskegon.


Meniere’s Disease & Trigeminal Neuralgia Symposium- 10:00am-5:00pm. Be examined by a team of expert doctors the same day! Registration fee is only $500 for doctors, $300 for new patients, $50 for existing patients and $25 for caregivers and students. Seating is limited. For information contact or call 616-575-9990. East Lake Office Building located at 3501 Lake Eastbrook Blvd, Grand Rapids. Spring into Detox- 5:30pm. with Brandi Grimmer CNC, CPt. Improve energy, lose weight, have better digestion, mental clarity and healthier skin. RSVP to Keystone Pharmacy, 4021 Cascade Rd SE, Grand Rapids.


Cooking Class for Weight Loss- 10:00am12:00pm. Home cooking for weight loss and

disease prevention. Menu: Black bean croquettes with avocado salsa; pineapple cherry coleslaw. Registration closes 1 week before class, call 616355-5333. $35. Holistic Nutrition Center, 90 West 8th Street, Holland.


4th Annual Mom 2 Mom Sale and Women’s Expo- 10:00am-2:00pm. For moms to sell gently used children’s items from clothing to equipment, and for women vendors who have products of interest to women or children. Admission is a $1 donation. For info & how to be a vendor contact First Baptist Church 1070 S. Quarterline, Muskegon. Inner Vision Quest- 2:00-4:00pm. Molly Larkin, co-author of the international best-seller The Wind Is My Mother, will teach about the Native American vision quest tradition and take you on a guided meditation to meet your spirit guides. Preregistration important. $25. Satya Yoga, 133 Butler St., Saugatuck.


Growing Up Spiritually- 10:00am. William Frank Diedrich (Executive Coach and author of 4 books) discusses how spiritual growth is about unconditional accountability for our lives, our thoughts, or emotions, our behaviors, our words and our actions without judgment. Free, love offering. Unity of Greater Grand Rapids, 6025 Ada Drive, Ada.


Energy Healing: Master Key to Stress Reduction7:00pm. Learn how energy healing can enhance your life, promote self-healing and reduce stress in this Free 1 hour webinar. Discover Your Path to Your True Potential8:00pm. Performance Coach Elle Ingalls guides you to develop a vision of your true potential and shares a method to overcome the obstacles and challenges holding you back from experiencing that vision in this live webinar. Free. For information call 269832-3573 or


Nourishing Ways of West Michigan- 7:00pm. Nourishing Beverages presented by Mela Belle of For more info go to www. Free (donations accepted). St. Mark’s Episcopal Church, 134 N. Division Ave., Grand Rapids.


Cooking Class for Beginners – Adult- 2:004:00pm. This cooking class will help develop skills for people who don’t know how, or just aren’t good at cooking. Menu: Lemon chicken, steamed broccoli

and wild rice. Registration closes one week before class, call 616-355-5333. $35. Holistic Nutrition Center, 90 West 8th Street, Holland. 7-Day Recharge Cleansing Program- 6:307:30pm. Learn about our NEW 7 Day Recharge cleansing program! Education provided by Emily Stapleton of Orthomolecular Products on the importance of ridding your body of toxins. Recipes for the cleanse provided by Chef Jen Foley. Invite is open and free, but please RSVP. If you decide to participate cost is $150. Grand Rapids Natural Health, 5131 East Paris SE, Kentwood.


The Seasons of My Soul: Spring Rhythms- 6:309:00pm. Reconnect with your spirit and the Sacred through interactive exercises, reflection, prayer/ meditation. Participants are encouraged to dress in outdoor appropriate clothing for a brief walk, weather permitting. $25. Call 616-514-3325 to register. Dominican Center at Marywood, 2025 Fulton Street East, Grand Rapids.


The Mindfulness Movie- 7:00pm. The Grand Rapids Center for Mindfulness is partnering with Dana Boyer, LMSW, and Barbara Williams, LPC, to bring you a screening at Gilda’s Club Grand Rapids located at 1806 Bridge Street NW. Please RSVP to or 616-361-3660.


Earth Week at the Grand Rapids Public LibraryCelebrate Earth Week at the Library with a full line-up of events! If you are a bird lover, gardener or parent, we’ve got you covered. Free. Visit www. for a schedule of events. 4th Annual Grand River GreenUp- 9:00am1:00pm. All are welcome to participate, but must be able to safely and responsibly navigate riverbank terrain. Food, refreshments and t-shirts will be provided to volunteers. To learn more and register, visit GreenUp will begin at Harbor Island in Grand Haven. 9th Annual Lakeshore Earth Day Celebration12:15pm lineup for Green Earth March; 1-4pm Earth Day Fair 4pm. Green Earth March begins in the Court House parking lot on Franklin Street. Earth friendly marchers, dogs and vehicles will travel down Washington and up Columbus Streets to the Earth Day Fair. Music, informational booths and activities. Free. Grand Haven Community Center, 421 Columbus Avenue, Grand Haven. Your Healing Gift; An Introduction to Energy Healing- 1:00-4:30pm. This introductory class will show you how to awaken your healing gift and invoke remarkable changes within your life. Taught by Healing in America Certified Trainer Laurie DeDecker, RN, MHIA. $45. Holistic Care Approach, 3368 Beltline Ct NE, Grand Rapids. 9th Annual Lakeshore Earth Day: Earth Rock Concert - 4:00-7:00pm. Live local bands and poets celebrating Earth Day! Free. Grand Haven Community Center, 421 Columbus Avenue, Grand Haven.


Going Up- 10:00am. Licensed Unity Teacher Kathy Raymer will share how we can expand our awareness in her message. We all experience cycles of

crucifixion, resurrection, and ascension our lives that if handled from a spiritual perspective can lead us to experience life from a higher level. Free, love offering. Unity of Greater Grand Rapids, 6025 Ada Drive, Ada.


Cooking Class: Vegan-Adult- 5:30-7:30pm. If you observe ‘Meatless Mondays’ or use a vegan diet, this class is for you. Menu: Quinoa Veggie Patties, Tuscan White Bean Soup. Registration closes one week before class, call 616-355-5333. $35. Holistic Nutrition Center, 90 West 8th Street, Holland. Discover Your Path to Your True Potential8:00pm. Performance Coach Elle Ingalls guides you to develop a vision of your true potential and shares a method to overcome the obstacles and challenges holding you back from experiencing that vision in this live webinar. Free. For information call 269832-3573 or


18th Annual Wege Foundation Speaker Series4:00-5:00pm. Economicology: How Wind Energy Can Power a Cleaner, Stronger America with Tom Kiernan. RSVP at by April 15. Free. Aquinas College Performing Arts Center, 1607 Robinson Rd SE, Grand Rapids. Green Day Health Expo & Fun Run- 5:008:00pm. Join us for our health fair with raffle items and giveaways. 6k run begins at 6:30pm. Free. Harvest Health Foods, 6807 Cascade Road, Grand Rapids. Celebrating Five Years of Passage Meditation7:00-8:00pm. Includes books and tapes by EASWARAN, a sharing on meditation and the allied skills, Instructions for and a ten-minute period of meditation, and more. Free will donation. For info visit Unity of Grand Rapids, 1711 Walker NW, Grand Rapids.



Using Glucosamine? Try a New Way to Flex and Move- 6:30pm. Learn about whole food nutrients and herbals with National Educator Chad Kelly with New Chapter at Harvest Health Foods, 4150 32nd Ave, Hudsonville.


Earth Day Run/Walk Event- 9:00am-5:00pm. In celebration of Earth Day, join Kalamazoo Nature Center on a fun and challenging run/walk through KNC’s most beautiful trails. Naturalistled hikes and Education programs include Earth Day crafts, yoga, and a live animal program. Call 269-381-1574 or visit for info. Kalamazoo Nature Center, 7000 Westnedge Avenue, Kalamazoo. Healthseekers Class- 12:15-1:30pm. Brown-bag Lunch-and-Learn class with Dr. Ragini Pierce. Are your health challenges not responding to conventional treatments? Do you want help in pinpointing deeper causes of your pain and dysfunction that address body, mind, emotions and spirit? RSVP to 231670-0179. Free. Angel Touch Family Chiropractic. 4265 Grand Haven Road. Muskegon. Simple Stress Relief- 5:30pm. We know stress levels in society have been increasing consistently and know stress can impact our health negatively. Learn how your body has been impacted and how health can be restored. Presented by Frank Boppel, D.A. Call 616419-8115 by April 20th to register. Free. Serendipite Organiques 959 Lake Dr SE, Grand Rapids. Innovations in Neuropathic Pain Management5:30-7:00pm. David Miller, RPh, PhD, FIACP. Ask the Compounding Pharmacist series. Q&A is included, seating is limited. RSVP to Keystone Pharmacy, 4021 Cascade Rd SE, Grand Rapids. Make Green Cleaning Supplies- 6:00-8:30pm. Participants will learn the dangers and environmental impacts of common household cleaners. Learn to use non-toxic ingredients to clean and disinfect the home. Cost is $20 for members and $25 for non-members. For information & to register call 269-721-4190. Pierce Cedar Creek Institute, 701 W Cloverdale Rd, Hastings.

Cooking Class Gluten Free – Adult- 1:00am12:00pm. Eating gluten free doesn’t have to be difficult. For this class we will be using recipes from the Wheat Belly Cookbook by William Davis MD. Registration closes one week before class, call 616-355-5333. $35. Holistic Nutrition Center, 90 West 8th Street, Holland.


Earth Fair-12:00-3:00pm. The Earth Fair is a great opportunity to learn more about sustainability efforts in our community. There will be giveaways, free games, and product demonstrations for a fun learning experience for all! Contact Joel Darling at 231-288-0999 for more info. Reeths-Puffer Elementary School, located at 874 E. Giles Road in Muskegon. Wild Foods Hike- 1:00-3:30pm. During the 1.5 mile hike, participants will learn how to identify and safely prepare commonly found wild foods. Free to members and $6 for non-members. For information & to register call 269-721-4190. Pierce Cedar Creek Institute, 701 W Cloverdale Rd, Hastings.


West Michigan Spirit Faire- 11am-5pm. Intuitives, Alternative Health Practitioners, Aura Photos, Jewelry, Drums, Reiki, Palmistry, Angel Messages, Crystals, Flutes, Massage, Door Prizes, $3 admission. Plainwell Comfort Inn, exit 49A off US-131 between GR & Kzoo.


Discover Your Path to Your True Potential8:00pm. Performance Coach Elle Ingalls guides you to develop a vision of your true potential and shares a method to overcome the obstacles and challenges holding you back from experiencing that vision in this live webinar. Free. For information call 269832-3573 or


Cooking Class Kids ages 12-15- 10:00-11:30am. Our kids cooking classes are designed to develop cooking skills and confidence in the kitchen. Menu: tropical spinach salad, sweet potato fries with spicy

natural awakenings

April 2014


herbed white bean dip. Other classes for kids at Registration closes one week before class, call 616-355-5333. $35. Holistic Nutrition Center, 90 West 8th Street, Holland.


Party for The Planet- 10:00am-3:00pm. Festivities will include booths, stations and demonstrations from the area’s top conservation-minded organizations. Animals that are threatened or endangered will be showcased with ideas on what you can do to help save these valuable species. John Ball Zoo 1300 W. Fulton St, Grand Rapids. Nutrition Class with Jessica Nelson, RDN11:00am-12:00pm. Nourishing your child through good Nutrition: Learning what your child should be eating and how to build good eating habits for the future. $15 pre-register online or at studio. $20 walk in (day of class). Bodhi Tree Yoga & Wellness Studio, 208 W 18th Street, Holland. Yoga and Aging Series- 2:00-4:00pm. Also, 5/10 & 5/17. In this series we will explore the latest health science and how a regular yoga practice can help alleviate some of the diseases associated with aging. $25 for individual workshops or $65 for the series. More info at On The Path Yoga, 701 E. Savidge #3, Spring Lake.


Kidney Walk- National Kidney Foundation of Michigan (NKFM) will gather friends and supporters for the 2014 Grand Rapids Kidney Walk at Fifth Third Ball Park. Includes a 3-mile riverfront walk along White Pine Trail, a kid’s zone and arts & crafts, a health and wellness area & more. Sign up at For information call 616-458-9520 or visit

savethedate events...

Save The Date Events - Must be submitted online each month at NaturalWestMichigan. com. Events priced $40 or above require a corresponding display ad. There is a $20 charge per listing, up to 50 words. If you are a current advertiser, distribution site or non-profit you just use this listing in place of one of your free listings for a $20 charge

savethedate June 13-15, 2014 Buttermilk Jamboree - Buttermilk is a 3 day music & arts festival that takes place at, and benefits Circle Pines Center; a non-profit cooperative organization. Visit for the complete line up and more info. Circle Pines Center, 8650 Mullen Road, Delton.


West Michigan Edition

ongoingevents Note: Visit for guidelines and to submit entries. Events must be re-submitted each month by the 15th of the month. Events subject to change, please call ahead.


study is done in groups and newcomers are always welcome. Free. Fountain Street Church, 24 Fountain St, Grand Rapids.

Spirit Space Sunday Worship- 10:30am. Join us for inspiring messages called Reasonings. Spirit Space is an inner-faith spiritual enrichment center. Take a virtual tour at Free. 3493 Blue Star Hwy, Saugatuck.

Anxiety Support Group- 4:30-7:00pm. Support groups for adults that are dealing with anxiety problems, including Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder. Free. Anxiety Resource Center, 312 Grandville Ave, Grand Rapids. 616-356-1416.

Community Class- 4:00-5:00pm. Community Class for $5.00. All proceeds donated to the charity of the month. Bodhi Tree Yoga & Wellness Studio, 208 W 18th Street, Holland.

Anxiety Support Group- 5:30pm. 1st, 3rd & 5th Wednesdays. A support group open to teens, ages 14-18, who have an anxiety problem, including Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder. Free. Anxiety Resource Center, 312 Grandville Ave, Grand Rapids. 616-356-1416.

Monday Is Food a Problem for You?- Do you eat when you’re not hungry? Do you binge, purge, or restrict? Is your weight affecting your life? Contact Overeaters Anonymous. No dues, fees, weigh-ins or diets. For Grand Rapids area meeting list, call 616-3361359 or visit Intermediate Hatha Yoga with Mitch Coleman – 6:15-7:30pm. All levels. Drop-ins welcome. Visit for more information. Classes meet at White River Yoga Studio, 8724 Ferry St. Montague. 231-740-6662. A Course In Miracles Healing Circle - 7:00-8:30 pm. “Space to feel; space to heal.” An ACIM-based support/study group. All are welcome. Prior experience with the Course unnecessary. (Not meeting on 4/21). Free. Fountain Street Church, Grand Rapids. 616-458-5095.

Discussion and Meditation- 6:00pm. Come, Let Us Reason Together every at Spirit Space. The evening starts with light refreshments, followed by a discussion from 6:30-7:15pm, ending with silent meditation till 8 pm. Spirit Space is an inner-faith spiritual enrichment center. Visit www.spirit-space. org. Free. 3493 Blue Star Hwy, Saugatuck. Creation’s Lessons for Living- 7:00pm. 2nd Wed of month. Creation Desires to help us grow, mature, evolve. Connect with Creation’s wisdom through the teachings and ceremonies of the shamanic Sweet Medicine SunDance Path. Donation. Call: 616-8564957 for more information. Join me in Learning to Walk In Beauty, Marie. NE Grand Rapids.



Massage Therapy Special- New customers mention this listing to receive a $10 discount off your initial massage. Contact Susan Lowden at 616-2950992, 535 Greenwood Ave, East Grand Rapids,

Gentle Hatha Yoga with Mitch Coleman- 7:459:00am & 9:15-10:30am. Drop-ins welcome. Visit for more information. Classes meet at White River Yoga Studio, 8724 Ferry St. Montague. 231-740-6662.

Advanced Hatha Yoga with Mitch Coleman – 6:15-7:30pm. Drop-ins welcome. Visit for more information. Classes meet at White River Yoga Studio, 8724 Ferry St. Montague. 231-740-6662.

A Course in Miracles- 7:00pm. This self-study system is unique in teaching forgiveness as the road to inner peace and the remembrance of unconditional love of our God. Also: Wednesdays at 9:30am. Love offering. Unity of Greater Grand Rapids, 6025 Ada Drive, Ada.

Meditation- 7:00pm. Learn the art and application of meditation as taught by Eknath Easwaran. For the beginner and master, meditation helps relieve stress, heal relationships, release deeper resources and realize one’s highest potential. Love offering. Unity of Grand Rapids, 1711 Walker Ave, Grand Rapids.



$20 off BioMeridian Assessments- Food allergies, environmental allergies, organ function and real food menus and shopping lists for families that are healthy and kid-approved. Visit or 616-365-9176. Grand Rapids.

Gentle Hatha Yoga with Mitch Coleman– 9:0010:15am & 10:30-11:45am. Drop-ins welcome. Visit for info. Classes meet at White River Yoga Studio. Montague. 231-740-6662.

A Course in Miracles Study Group- 10:30am. Explores the miracles that occur when we forgive, become aware of our judgments of others, and ourselves, and let go of mistaken perceptions. Some

Sweetwater Local Foods Market- 9:00am-1:00pm. Hackley Health at the Lakes building on Harvey Street. We are inside if the weather is bad. We are a double up bucks and bridge card market. Hesperia. 231-861-2234.



...connecting you to the leaders in natural health and green living in West Michigan. To find out how you can be included in The Natural Directory log-on to


Frequency Apps Wellness Center 616-755-8446 We are the leader in new generation homeopathic body applications known as the Frequency App! 50+ varieties of Apps including hCG, Weight Loss, Hormone, Sleep, Detox, Supplements, MSA Testing, Food/Environmental Allergy Analysis, Ionic Foot Baths.

BODY CARE PRODUCTS SÉRENDIPITÉ ORGANIQUES, LLC 959 Lake Dr SE, Suite 2, Grand Rapids, MI 49506 616-419-8115

*NEW LOCATION! A retail store exclusively offering organic non-toxic makeup, skincare & other products for your body, home, & pets! Products must score ‘Low Hazard 0-2’ on, or they simply won’t be considered! See ad page 13.


Certified Massage Therapist offering Therapeutic, Hot Stone & Matrix Massage. Certified Wholistic Kinesiologist, Certified Matrix Energetics Practitioner, Reconnection Healing Practitioner, Certified Herbalist, Certified Acutonics Practitioner, and a Certified Reflexologist. See ad page 10.


Kyle Hass Licensed Residential Home Builder 616-299-5815 Locally owned and operated. Specializing in building quality livable and affordable new homes that are Energy Efficient and utilize Green Building practices. Unmatched efficiencies and uncompromising quality. Call today for a free quote. See ad page 9.

CHIROPRACTIC CARE DYNAMIC FAMILY CHIROPRACTIC Dr. Ronda VanderWall 4072 Chicago Drive, Grandville 616-531-6050

Family owned and operated in the heart of downtown Grandville, Dynamic Family Chiropractic focuses on lifestyle improvements through living a maximized life. A safe and natural approach to health through the combination of exercise, nutrition, detoxification and chiropractic care.


Dr. Andrew Schafer 1801 Breton SE Grand Rapids, MI 49506 616-301-3000

Tr e a t i n g m u s c u l o s k e l e t a l conditions, but specializing in b ac k p a in , n eck p ai n , a n d headaches. Also offering physical therapy, massage therapy, and postural awareness. Most insurance accepted. Breton Village area. See ad pages 7 & 30.


Mary De Lange, CCT. CMT. 1003 Maryland Ave, N.E., Grand Rapids 616-456-5033 Certified therapist since 1991 offering colon therapy in a sterile and professional environment. Using a holistic approach, colonics relieves constipation, diarrhea, gas, bloat, poor digestion, back pain, body odor and more. See ad page 6.

Natural Health & Healing Center 723 Kenmoor SE Grand Rapids 49546 616-481-9074 Offering an advanced clientcentered dimension of colonics: gentle, safe and effective. Eliminate toxins and enhance well-being. 16 years of experience. Also offering Quantum Biofeedback sessions. I-ACT certified Instructor.


Barbara Zvirzdinis, WK, CMT 616-581-3885 Matrix Energetics is a system used to heal, transform and create new possibilities in your life. Using the principles of quantum physics and subtle e n e rg y d u r i n g a M a t r i x Energetics session we are able to enter into different realties and download new possibilities for your mental, emotional, physical and spiritual selves. See ad page 10.


”What you put on your skin, goes within!” Choose safe, effective essential oils for relief from pain, hormonal issues, diabetes, digestive issues and allergies. Also offering “clean” skin care products, GMO-free Meal Replacement Shakes, Masaji, NutriSmart, Liver Detox, Bio-feedback and Ionic detoxing Foot Baths. FREE monthly classes.


doTERRA Essential Oils IPC #406390 616-340-5115 Our oils effectively reduce or eliminate many c h e m i c a l s , pharmaceuticals and general medicines in your environment. I offer Zyto Compass biofeedback scans, AromaTouch Technique application and free educational oils classes. Call to schedule an appointment today. See ad page 28.

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April 2014






Shawn Merkel, ASID 616-916-1071

534 Fountain NE, Grand Rapids MI 49503 616-262-3848

Hakomi Therapy can truly change your life. It’s a mindfulnessbased, experiential therapy for transforming the unconscious patterns that keep you from the love, joy, and fulfillment you deserve. Offered with exquisite care and attentiveness.

Complete Interior Design Services for your home or business. Specializing in creating, harmonious, nurturing spaces, by incorporating feng shui principals and repurposing your existing treasures. Let your space become a reflection of who you are. See ad page 13.




Educational programs for personal health improvement Workplace wellness programs Wellness Forum Foundation focused on school nutrition and children’s health - National conferences.


Bob Huttinga PA-C & Rev. Barbara Huttinga 332 S. Lincoln Ave, Lakeview 989-352-6500 Affordable, natural approach to better health. Certified nutritional consultant with 22 years experience. Offering select, high quality vitamins, minerals, herbs, children’s products, essential oils, homeopathics, weight loss and more. Professional discounts and senior pricing. See ad in page 33.


332 S. Lincoln Ave Lakeview 989-352-6500 A Certified Physician Assistant since 1976, specializing in naturopathic and homeopathic care. Family care. Also, certified Silva Method instructor. We use Clinical Homeopathy to assist traditional medications. We take most insurances. See ad page 33.


West Michigan Edition


Certified Wholistic Kinesiologist, Certified Matrix E n e rg e t i c s P r a c t i t i o n e r, Certified Massage Therapist, Reconnection Healing P r a c t i t i o n e r, C e r t i f i e d Herbalist, Certified Acutonics Practitioner and Certified Reflexologist. Specializing in muscle testing, massage, energy medicine, nutritional counseling, lectures and classes. See ad page 10.


Jaci Timmermans, MT 4072 Chicago Drive, Grandville, MI 49418 616-531-6050 I offer Swedish massage with Integrated Te c h n i q u e s , c h o s e n specifically to your unique body. Relieve those tired and sore muscles and rejuvenate! Call for ongoing monthly specials and discounts.

HANDS ON HEALING PROFESSIONAL MASSAGE THERAPY LLC Pattie Kooy, LMT, CMMT, CMT, HTP 5286 Plainfield NE Plainfield Twp, MI 49525 616-648-7217

Professional massage therapist offering Medical Massage, Manual Therapy, Hot Stone, Healing Touch Therapy, Essential Oils, Infrared heat lamp, Bio-energetic Therapy, Hot castor oil packs, Chinese herbal liniments & Detox Massage. Mention ad for $10 off hour massage.


Mary De Lange, CCT., CMT. 1003 Maryland Ave NE, Grand Rapids 616-456-5033 Over 21 years of professional experience and trained in a complete range of modalities. Whether you are seeking relaxation, renewal, or treatment for a specific condition, Mary will help find an approach that is helpful for you. See ad page 6.


Sheri Beth Schafer, CMT, Ayurvedic Bodyworker, Reiki Master 1801 Breton SE Grand Rapids, MI 49506 616-301-3000 We have multiple certified massage therapists offering relaxation, prenatal, deep tissue massage, and medical massage. We also offer Reiki, chakra balancing, and Ayurvedic bodywork. Breton Vi l l a g e a r e a . w w w. See ad pages 7 & 30.


In private practice since 1982 specializing in homebirth. Over 1450 births attended. Offering midwifery care that maintains a family-centered safe birth experience. Empowering women to stay healthy during pregnancy, give birth naturally and parent in the best ways. Free initial consultations including Prenatal check up.


Breakthrough technology. FGXPowerstrips treat pain naturally without the use of harmful pharmaceuticals. A blend of herbs, Minerals and Alpha 3 CPM Marine Phytoplankton. A FDA listed class 1 medical device. Call for your sample today!


The only personal trainers in Grand Rapids offering a 100% Money Back Guarantee, no tricks, no gimmicks, just results. See ad page 15.


5286 Plainfield Ave., NE Grand Rapids 49525 616-364-9191

An award winning Hair Stylist with 30 years Advanced Education, that uses and sells Organic Hair Care Products as well as uses a professional line of Organic Hair Color. Ionic Detox Foot Baths also available.

LONDON STUDIOS SALON Ashley Woods: 616-443-9583 Jessica Willis: 616-460-0902 Sherry Minott: 616-633-5251 Sally Loew: 616-299-1796

Specializing in Organic Colour Systems. Ammoniafree, professionalo n l y, p e r m a n e n t , salon exclusive hair color with 100% certified organic ingredients, natural plant extracts, amino acids, natural anti-oxidants and nutrients that produce the healthiest, richest, colors. www. or LondonStudiosSalon.


0-11279 Tallmadge Woods Dr. Grand Rapids, MI 49534 616-791-0472 State licensed school for massage and bodywork. Offering high quality, affordable massage certification courses as well as NCBTMB continuing education courses for the experienced therapist. Located conveniently to Grand Rapids, Standale, Walker and Allendale.



503 East Broadway St. Mt. Pleasant, MI 48858 989-773-1714

To place a Classified Listing: Email listing to Must be received by the 15th of the month prior to publication. $1.00 per word; must be pre-paid.

Educational Programs Offered: Natural Health Program - Four Years (one weekend a month); Massage Therapy Program - One Year (two weekends a month); Holistic Doula Practitioner Program - Six Months (one weekend a month). Individual classes available. See ad page 2.


3637 Clyde Park Ave., Suite 2 Wyoming, MI 49509 616-254-7350

BUSINESS OPPORTUNITIES Looking for people who want to launch a new product for pain relief. Over 1.5 Billion people Worldwide suffer from chronic pain. This is a unique natural medical device that is a fusion of Ancient Herbs and Modern energy. Doctor formulated, FDA listed Medical Device that helps reduce pain and inflammation. We are looking for individuals who want to change peopleâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s lives and have fun. For more information please visit or call Katrina at 269-214-4432.


Custom screen printed apparel using water-based and discharge inks. Earth friendlier screen printing with a different look and feel. Also offering promotional products with an emphasis on the environment. See ad page 21.

Energy Healings and Training, Reiki & Urevia Healings/Classes - held near Hastings at Subtle Energies w/ Ken & Dana Gray. Learn a variety of techniques that can heal your life. Reiki I & Urevia Practitioner classes are eligible for NAN 20% discount. Visit for more information.




Frequency Apps Wellness Center 616-755-8446 A variety of natural items for your weight loss goals! Frequency Apps patches including hCG, Weight Loss/Power Workout, Appetite Suppressant. Also Supplements including Diatrix (for Diabetics), Green Coffee Bean, and African Mango, MSA Testing, Food/ Environmental Allergy Analysis.

Northwest Grand Rapids Commercial Building1058 Richmond NW, Grand Rapids, MI. Current use is a full service salon on the main floor and a spacious 3 bedroom apartment on the 2nd floor. Great location on Richmond with steady traffic and across from the popular Richmond Park. Only $125,000! Call Jeff Blahnik at Five Star Real Estate 616-791-1500 or visit JeffBlahnik. com for more information.

OPPORTUNITIES Holistic & Green Business Owners Wanted for Health Network- NAN, the Natural Awakenings Network, is a green and healthy living network that will allow members to enjoy discounts on products & services focused on wellness, green/ sustainable living and healthy lifestyles. If you are interested in becoming a provider (a business or organization that offers discounts to members) in this innovative network or want more details, contact Natural Awakenings at 616-656-9232 or Participating as a Provider is FREE for the 1st year.

SEEKING EMPLOYMENT Part time administrative work desired by dependable, professional, friendly, experienced person with great work ethic. Holistic office a plus. Call Sharon at 307-899-4573.

Look for this symbol throughout Natural Awakenings for Natural Awakenings Network (NAN) providers offering savings to NAN members. natural awakenings

April 2014



West Michigan Edition

Natural Awakenings Magazine ~ April 2014  

Natural Awakenings Magazine is West Michigan's premiere natural health, holistic living, green magazine focusing on conscious living and sus...

Natural Awakenings Magazine ~ April 2014  

Natural Awakenings Magazine is West Michigan's premiere natural health, holistic living, green magazine focusing on conscious living and sus...