DIY Bath Salts + Sugar Scrub

This past Sunday I had a few ladies over for an evening of arts and crafts. Yes, you read that right. Arts and crafts are definitely not just for kids!

Today I'm sharing the homemade essential oil goodies we made - these are GREAT for last minute gifts, or for a fun vacation week activity.

Beyond the practical, creating something tangible with your hands is really satisfying, especially in a day and age where we do so much with our minds and on our devices.

I've found making time to make things with my hands is critical to balance out screen time. Cooking and baking fall into this category, as do arts and crafts. The last two years I've been building up my art supplies so that I can be creative outside the kitchen. Similar to when I was a kid, I have a basket of markers, pens, stickers, glue, tape, construction paper, etc. I save old make up containers and tissue paper, ribbons and other miscellaneous items that I could use in a future creative endeavor.

Coloring or doodling (or whatever art form calls to you) can be a great way to unwind after a long day, or a fun activity for a rainy Saturday afternoon. If you have kids, AWESOME - get right in there and play with them. And if you don't - invite a friend over to catch up while creating.

Beyond the pure FUN and relaxation that can come with crafting, many activities leave you with cool products - beautifully colored inspirational quotes, jewelry or (as was the case in my home this weekend) homemade bath and body products.

Below I'm sharing the "recipes" for the essential oil crafts I made with my friends this weekend: homemade bath salts and sugar scrubs.

These make AMAZING gifts (I gave out my first bath salt yesterday and the recipient was SO impressed and excited), but they're also fun activities for a quiet winter evening or lazy afternoon

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BATH SALTS

Ingredients:

  • 3 cups Epsom salts

  • 1 cup fine sea salt (optional, can do all Epsom salt if you prefer)

  • 1/4 cup baking soda (optional, see note below!)

  • 20-30 drops essential oils

Directions:

  1. Add salts and baking soda (if using) to a large bowl and mix until well combined.

  2. Add in essential oils of choice. If you’re making multiple blends, transfer salt mixture to individual containers or baggies before adding the oils.

A note on baking soda: Baking soda is added to the salt blend for soft skin (salt can actually be slightly irritating). Almost every recipe I found online for homemade bath salts included baking soda. However, baking soda is also known to react with some essential oils. I’d skip the baking soda if you’re using glass jars to store the salts, planning on adding citrus oils or may be storing the salts for an extended period of time.

Sugar Scrub

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups sugar (any kind will do but ideally something organic!)

  • 1/2 - 1 cup oil (coconut, olive, almond, etc!)

  • 15-25 drops essential oils

Directions:

  1. Add sugar and oil to a large bowl. If using an oil that’s solid at room temperature (like coconut oil) you may want to melt or soften it beforehand.

  2. Mix until well combined. You want your scrub to be moist but not soaked so adjust oil and sugar as needed.

  3. Add in essential oils of choice. If you’re making multiple blends, transfer sugar and oil mixture to individual containers before adding the oils.

What oils should I use?

This is where the creative part comes in - YOU get to choose the essential oil or oil combinations for your personal salts and scrubs.

I’ve included some combinations below to get you started.

You can learn more about my favorite essential oils and their therapeutic properties by downloading my FREE Essential Oils 101 Guide here.

Essential oil combinations:

  • Clear sinuses = equal parts eucalyptus and peppermint

  • Relaxation blend = equal parts lavender and bergamot

  • Clear mind = equal parts lavender and lemon

  • Balancing blend = clary sage, mint and tea tree (melaluca)

  • Stress relief = orange, clove, lemon and cedarwood

I solely use the doTERRA essential oils for their quality and sustainable business practices. Click here to purchase doTERRA oils.

One of my intentions for 2019 is to do more with my hands. So I'd love to hear from you:

are you into any arts and crafts? If so, what are they?

Leave a comment below and let me know!

2018 Holiday Gift Guide

Hi my name is Emily and I love gifting.

I went through a phase in my life where I poo-pooed on the whole holiday presents thing. I don’t love commercialism and the gross excess that often goes into the holidays - the hours and hours of shopping and the overcrowded malls (and the stress that comes along with that!!), the gifts you end up returning and presents just for the sake of presents and omg ALL THE WRAPPING PAPER. So much wrapping paper. I didn’t want to participate in that.

And I kind of didn’t for a few years. I said “let’s just give each other the gift of our presence” and left it at that.

And while presence and quality time are better than any gadget or new item of clothing in my book, I missed gifting.

I enjoy thinking about the people I love and spending time finding a gift that feels true to them and their spirit. And I love that moment when someone opens a gift that you did spend time and energy picking out - the happiness (and sometimes surprise!) on their face is magical.

I realized that just because I didn’t believe in the commercialized Christmas or Hanukah experience didn’t mean I couldn’t participate in the holiday gift giving tradition in a way that felt good and true for me.

So my gift guide this year includes both experiences but also things. My hope is that this list provides you with some intentional ideas and inspiration for gifts you’ll give (or receive!) this holiday season.

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PALO SANTO ROLLERBALL

Palo santo is a tree that grows on the coast of South America and is related to Frankincense, Myrrh and Copal. In Spanish, the name literally means “holy wood” and is known to be healing and energetically cleansing. I burn palo santo (the wood) in my apartment regularly to clear the air, but you can’t burn things in all apartments (or offices, or subway cars…) so I was very excited to find this palo santo essential oil.

To be clear: I’ve sampled a number of palo santo oil blends before. I don’t love the blends as I find they smell more like other things, not just palo santo. This “smokeless blessing” anointing oil by Brooklyn-based company Highborn is the real deal.

A SESSION WITH A HEALER OR INTUITIVE

Likely if you’re reading my blog, you’re at least a little bit interested in the “woo woo” things like astrology, tarot and energy work. If you’ve been curious in trying out one of these healing modalities, a session is a great thing to ask for as a gift.

It can also be a fun experience to do with your friends or loved ones as a shared gift. Last year my girlfriends and I decided to book an evening with an oracle as our holiday gift to each other, and it was AMAZING. Not only did we get to spend time together, but we also had an unforgettable experience that we may not have pursued on our own.

Here are a few ideas (plus some personal referrals) for healer experiences: tarot reading, astrological birth chart reading, oracle session, private or small group yoga, Universal Health Principles sessions (contact me for booking).

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A book that was meaningful to you

Gifting a book that was particularly meaningful to you, or that you feel would resonate with the recipient is a THING gift that also acts as an experience. You can chat about the book as your loved one reads it.

For some of my favorite books, check out my FAVORITE PRODUCTS page.

A CRYSTAL OR CANDLE

Like a book that has meaning, it can be special to give a crystal with specific properties or a candle that’s meant to be burned with intention. Again with this gift (and with many of the gifts on this year’s list) it shows that you really thought about the person in selecting the items.

My favorite crystals: amethyst (for protection), quartz (for clarity) and citrine (for personal power and creativity). I suggest actually going into a shop to pick out crystals as often specific stones will “speak” to you.

My favorite candles: House of Intuition candles

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A Magazine SUBSCRIPTION

Another gift that keeps on giving: a magazine subscription. I’ve been gifted both Yoga Journal and Runner’s World - each month when I received the magazine I would think about the person who gifted me the subscription. So nice!

A PRINT OR PIECE OF ART

Art is not the easiest gift to give because it is SO personal, but I’ve found smaller prints can make lovely gifts. I love Archie’s Press - they have cool prints of major cities. A fun gift, especially for someone who’s just moved. Archie’s Press also has fun prints of body parts, the zodiac and more.

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ESSENTIAL OILS + DIFFUSER

Everyone in my family gets essential oils as some part of their holiday gift, and no one complains. But really, essential oils are such a wonderful gift - they feel like a luxury item, but are also super practical since they can be used in so many ways.

If you’re looking for a full gift set, I’d suggest purchasing a few oils and a diffuser so that your gift recipient can immediately enjoy the oils in their home.

If you’re the crafty type, you can purchase a few oils yourself and make custom blends for your loved ones. This is what I do and not only is it super fun, but people love the personalized gifts!

To learn more + purchase essential oils, head here.

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That’s it for this years list!



Need more gift inspiration? Check out my guides from previous years:

2017 Holiday Gift Guide

2016 Holiday Gift Guide

Not your typical Thanksgiving recipes

Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday because FOOD but also because of the traditions my family, friends and I have created together around this day.

In the past, I've pulled together a round up of healthy holiday recipes - some that I'm hoping to try out myself, but also simply to provide YOU all with inspiration on how this traditionally overindulgent meal can also be nourishing and full of veggies :)

My Thanksgiving dinner = a rainbow of veggies!

My Thanksgiving dinner = a rainbow of veggies!

This year I'm doing a slightly different recipe round up. The recipes I'm sharing today are not necessarily meant for your holiday meal, but rather in the days surrounding Thanksgiving (or whatever holiday you're celebrating!).

Why? What trips us up health or digestion wise around the holidays isn't usually the holiday meal itself. It's how we eat in between the festivities and parties.

Pumpkin AND pecan pie with whipped cream is totally fine on Thanksgiving. It's when we have that plus the Gingerbread latte and almond croissant the next morning while Black Friday shopping, plus the 1/2 (okay full) bottle of wine with friends the next evening, plus leftover pie for breakfast the next day that we start to feel less than sparkly in our bodies.

It's not ONE meal or ONE decision that makes or breaks your health. It's how you feed and treat yourself most of the time that truly makes a difference.

Mmmm look at all those veggies!

Mmmm look at all those veggies!

This is not to say you can't enjoy yourself thoroughly and repetitively throughout the holiday season. I plan to have MANY desserts and cocktails with friends and lazy mornings.

But I also plan to choose my indulgences consciously, and choose to feed myself nourishing, whole foods between those conscious indulgences.

So the recipes that I'm sharing today are wholesome, gut healing and simple. They're foods and meals you can reset yourself with in between the parties and celebratory meals, for this season and beyond.

NOURISHING RECIPES for “IN BETWEEN” HOLIDAY FEASTS:

Note: Many of these recipes are pulled from the few cookbooks I own. I’ve linked recipes when possible, but I also highly recommend investing in these cookbooks as they are packed with easy, nourishing recipes.

SOUPS + SALADS:

MEALS:

  • Shepard’s Pie from Go with Your Gut

  • Superhuman Breakfast (for breakfast, lunch or dinner!)

  • The Simplest Salmon from Thin From Within

  • My favorite thing to reset my gut is a pile of steamed veggies of any and all kinds! I love steaming up kale, sweet potatoes, peas, kabocha squash and more in my bamboo steamer basket (which yes, I pack and bring with me for the holidays!).

  • Collard Salad Wraps from Thin From Within

DRINKS:

COOKBOOKS: Oh She Glows, Go with Your Gut, Thin From Within

You best bet I'll be photographing my eats and creations!

You best bet I'll be photographing my eats and creations!

Whether you make one of these recipes or something more festive from a previous holiday round up (linked in PS below!), I LOVE seeing your food photos. Snap a picture of your dish or plate and post it to social media (Instagram, Facebook or Twitter!). Be sure to tag me @EmilyNachazel so I can see your posts.

For healthy holiday meal inspiration, check out my recipe round UPs from previous years:

2017 Thanksgiving Recipe Round Up

2016 Thanksgiving Recipe Round Up

2015 Thanksgiving Recipe Round Up

2014 Thanksgiving Recipe Round Up

2017 Holiday Gift Guide

Tis the season for gift giving! had so much fun pulling together this guide for you with some of my favorite things that make wonderful gifts (to give or to receive!).

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2017 Holiday Gift Guide

Thrive Market subscription - Thrive market delivers healthy pantry staples to your doorstep at a fraction of the cost compared to your local grocery or health food store. PLUS for every membership, Thrive donates a membership to a family in need so not only will you save yourself money in the long run, you’ll also be helping someone else get access to quality products. Some staples I order on Thrive: Thrive brand bone broth (delicious!), nut butters, natural cleaning supplies, sardines and smoked oysters (they have my favorite brand that’s packed in olive oil), baking supplies like gluten free flour and coconut sugar, and so much more. Use this link for 25% off your first Thrive order!

Infrared sauna  - I first discovered the incredible benefits of infrared sauna therapy on a trip to Los Angeles, and immediately knew I had to find a way to experience this more regularly. This is the portable infrared sauna that I have - it folds up for easy storage and I’ve loved my experience so far. Click here to read more about the benefits of infrared sauna therapy and where I go (when I don’t use my personal sauna!) in LA and NYC.

Locking travel mug - I’ve been trying to reduce the waste that I create and this travel mug has been an easy way for me to do that. Not only is it super stylish and sleek, it also keeps your drink hot for up to 24 hours! For real!!

Bose noise-cancelling headphones - These headphones are one of the best gifts I’ve ever received (right up there with my Vitamix! Thanks Mom and Dad!). I especially love them for travel as they block out most external noise so I can focus on work, or relax, no matter where I am.

23andMe DNA testing kit - The 23andMe DNA testing kit is a cool gift that is also an experience. Here’s how it works: You receive the kit and send back a saliva test. Within 6-8 weeks you get a report telling you more about your heritage, your ancestors, and even your relatives living around the world. For an additional fee you can also get a health report that will tell you genetic health risks, traits, wellness and more health info. How cool?? I haven't done this yet BUT am super interested... hint hint, wink wink ;)

Thin From Within - Robyn Youkilis’s new book: Thin From Within - The Go with Your Gut Way to Lose Weight is both a healthy living guide and beautiful cookbook. Helping Robyn with this book has been a huge part of my work the past year, and I’m beyond proud to share that it is officially available for pre-order just in time for the holidays! PLUS when you pre-order the book you’ll also receive Robyn’s 2 hour Meal Prep Workshop. Learn more about the workshop + how to register for that here: www.robynyoukilis.com/bookgift.

Essential oils - Everyone on my list gets essential oils in some shape or form, and no one complains! Essential oils make the best gifts because they feel luxurious and provide good vibes immediately. If you have someone in mind that you’d like an essential oil recommendation for, email me! I’m happy to suggest an oil or two. Some favorite products for gifts include: Emotional Aromatherapy Kit, Introductory Kit, Family Essentials Kit, or a diffuser with a few oil blends. Head here to learn more about my favorite oils + to purchase: www.emilynachazel.com/essential-oils  

In home massage - Massages are AWESOME for both the mind and body, but not all of us have time to book a full spa day. Enter: Soothe - an app that connects you to local message therapists that will come to your home. Use the code EKTFH for $20 off your first massage or gift card.

A float tank experience - What the heck is a float tank? It's one of my favorite ways to relax, recharge, and enter a deep meditative state. Check out this blog post for more details. Then book your first session at my favorite NYC spot Lift Next Level Floats HERE! (special savings offer for my people, so make sure you book through the link!)

ClassPass membership - Do you like to mix up your workouts? Always down for a new fitness adventure? Then you will love ClassPass. From yoga and barre to cycling and Pilates, ClassPass lets you try the best boutique studios in your area. One monthly membership, endless options, all up to you! Gyms are included too, so if you just need some treadmill or elliptical time, you're covered too! Use this link for $30 off your first month!

Quip toothbrush - Okay, okay a toothbrush may be a funny thing to give as a gift, but this toothbrush is cool! Quip is a start up based in NYC and they are making the most stylish electronic toothbrushes on the market. Plus, when you buy from Quip you’ll automatically be sent brush refills (and new batteries!) every few months so you don’t have to worry about when or how to replace the heads, they come right to your doorstep. Use this link to get a bonus brush head with your order.

A deck of tarot cards - If you follow me on Instagram stories, you’ll probably know that I recently got into tarot cards. Tarot cards, like so many other “woo woo” practices, are just a way to reflect. I think they are super fun to play with and you don’t have to have any special powers to pull cards, just an interest and open mind. I love these two decks by Kim Krans - they are beautiful and come with helpful guidebooks: The Wild Unknown Tarot Deck and Spirit Animals Deck

 
Need some more ideas? Check out my Gift Guide from last year -
 2016 Holiday Gift Guide I still stand by all of these ideas!
 

Thanksgiving Recap 2017

We don't mess around with Thanksgiving in my family - it seems like each year the food gets better and better (and our group gets bigger and bigger).

I am beyond thankful that we go big with veggies in our holiday meal, in fact in my mind they are the star of the show! Sure, we have turkey and stuffing and mashed potatoes, but we also have cauliflower and carrots and green beans and salad and more.

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Here's what I contributed this year:

- My Perfect Pumpkin Bread - this is a great gluten free loaf to have around for breakfast, snacks or a sweet treat. I think it's best sliced, toasted and slathered with butter.

- ALL the roasted veggies - We did cauliflower with curry spices, root veggies (carrots, parsnips, turnips) with olive oil + salt + pepper, and squash (both acorn and delicata) with coconut oil + cinnamon + nutmeg. YUM.

- Saweet Potato Casserole with Crunchy Nut Topping - I've been making this healthified sweet potato casserole for the past few years. It's so good that my family now asks "Are you making that sweet potato dish again this year?" I usually skip the vegan butter and just use coconut oil, and add a little more spice to the topping.

- Kale Salad with Preserved Lemon and Candied Ginger - Kale salad is great for holiday meals because you can prep it in advance (dressing and all!) and it keeps for hours (and actually gets more delicious as the flavors meld together and soften the kale. This particular kale salad was a HUGE success - my cousin Jennifer even said "I've never said the words 'This kale is delicious' until today." Yeah, it's that good.

- Sunbutter Stuffed Dates - OMG you guys - I forgot how insanely delicious these little treats are. This time, I used nut-free sunbutter in the filling and they were SUCH a hit!

 

And here are some of the other delicious dishes we had at the meal:

- Twice Baked Sweet Potatoes, two ways

- Butternut Squash and Brussels Sprouts Casserole

- Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Bacon and Pomegrante Seeds

- Green Bean Casserole

- Green Beans with Lemon

- Beet and Orange Salad

- Gravlax with Pickled Onions and Creamy Dill Sauce

- Cornbread Stuffing (regular and gluten-free)

- Mashed Potatoes

- Turkey

- Gravy

- An assortment of cookies

- Raw chocolate

- TONS of pies: pumpkin, apple, berry and pecan

- Homemade whipped cream

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Happy Thanksgiving!

Grateful for family, friends and everything on this plate! 

 

 

Did you make anything for Thanksgiving this year?
What was your favorite dish from your holiday table?