Friday, September 28, 2012

Photo Friday!

You are welcome to download and use this photo with my watermark.  Share it on Facebook, Pinterest, or use it as a screensaver. (photos are not to be sold, or used for advertising, please link back to my shop when using photos online)  If you would like to purchase a print without the watermark, visit my shop on Etsy.  Discount prices for Friday Photos!
Hope everyone has a wonderful weekend!

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

DIY - Herbal Heart Heating Pad

Now that its fall, cooler temps are coming and I’ve been thinking of ways to stay warm these next few months.  Ok, so it’s still in the 90’s here in AZ, but we are all pretending its fall around here.  I came up with a fun little project for you to try this weekend!  Make your own herbal heart heating pad!  I bought an herbal rice heating pack many years ago in a shoulder shape and was always twisting it around trying to get the shape just right for where I wanted it, on a sore leg muscle or tummy.  Then quite a few years ago a friend showed me how to make them myself using flaxseed instead of rice.  Flax is much softer and because it is a flower seed, not a grain like rice, it has much more oil and will hold the heat a lot longer.  I made some for my boys (not heart shaped) for Christmas about 6 years ago and they still use them all the time.

What you need:

3 ½ cups of flaxseed (I found this in the bins at Sprouts for $1.19 per pound)

Dried herbs (I use lavender, chamomile and spearmint - also found at Sprouts for around 69 cents an ounce, you don’t need much, a couple tablespoons per herb depending on your preference)

2 - 10” squares of fabric (I often use flannel, but found some soft pink sweatshirt material I loved for this tutorial, cotton is just fine as well, fleece is too thick)

Matching thread

Sewing machine



How to make an Herbal Heart Heating Pad:

1.        Cut a heart shape out of your fabric (fold the fabric in ½ so both sides of your heart will match)

2.       Pin inside out

3.       Sew inside out with a ¼” seam around the edges leaving about a 2” opening

4.       Turn right side out

5.       Fill with flaxseed and add herbs to your liking

6.       Finish sewing the opening

Microwave 1-2 minutes depending on the size of your heating pad and the power of your microwave.  Don’t burn yourself!  If it’s too hot, let it cool before putting it on your body.

You can also put your heart in a bag and stick it in the freezer for a couple of hours and use it as a cold pack!

You can make any shape you want, shoulder pads, eye pillows, squares, tubes, small hearts or squares for pocket warmers.  Sew many possibilities. :)

If you don’t have access to a sewing machine or don’t want to attempt this, you can buy an herbal heart heating pack from me here -  Creative Wave Studios.  I’ll also take custom orders for any other shape, eye pillows, shoulder pads, etc.  These make great gifts!

Send an e-mail to or contact me through my shop on Etsy for custom orders.

If you make a herbal heating pad send me a photo!  I would love to see what you make :)


Monday, September 24, 2012

Magnesium - does it really help?

I’m going to sing the praises of Magnesium today!  The 2 big changes I have made recently are diet, and supplementing with Magnesium.  I have noticed a BIG difference in my muscle pain the past few weeks and I’m attributing that to the Magnesium.  I had mild restless leg  (would bother me about once or twice a week) and that is GONE.  Over the weekend I took a day trip to Sedona AZ and a year ago (even a few months ago) spending a day driving and walking would have sent me straight into a flare before the day was over, but today I’m sitting here a just a little tired, and not in much pain at all.

My Dr. suggested I start taking Magnesium a few months ago, and I had heard about it before that from my online support group, so I already wanted to try it.  Make sure you talk with your Dr. before starting anything new.  I can’t begin to know what your specific needs are, I just love to share with you the things that are working for me.  I’m very careful about what I try and I pray over everything, I advise everyone to do the same!  There is no one better than Jehovah Rapha - the LORD our healer, to lead us down the right paths.

“In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight.”  Proverbs 3:6

In a previous post, DIY – Magnesium Oil Spray, I spoke about symptoms of Magnesium deficiency, a very common problem especially for those with fibromyalgia.  Today I’d like to address the types of Magnesium that are most beneficial to take.

Start out with Magnesium Malate (malic acid) in the mornings for energy.  I take 200mg with breakfast and 200mg at lunch.  Then at dinner I take 200mg of Magnesium Glycinate, and sometimes if I’m hurting more, or having a hard time relaxing I’ll take 200mg more before bed.  These types of Magnesium are chelate form and more easily absorbed by the body.  If you have heard people say they have tried Magnesium and it didn’t help them, most likely they were taking the wrong form, or not taking enough.  It is really important to build up slowly.  I started with 400mg (the recommended daily dose)  One pill (200mg) with breakfast and one with dinner.  Then after about 2 weeks I added the lunch time dose of 200mg.  That was when I started to feel a difference in my body.  With 800mg I feel even better, but I have to watch that because Magnesium in any form can have laxative effects.

Where can you get these forms of Magnesium?  The internet is a great resource, but if you can't wait, check out a health food store in your area.  I found both of these forms at my local Sprouts store.

To learn more about Magnesium check out these links:

Have YOU tried Magnesium supplements?  What were your results?


Friday, September 21, 2012

Photo Friday!!

You are welcome to download and use this photo with my watermark.  Share it on Facebook, Pinterest, or use it as a screensaver. (photos are not to be sold, or used for advertising, please link back to my shop when using photos online)  If you would like to purchase a print without the watermark, visit my shop on Etsy.  Discount prices for Friday Photos!

I  have had internet issues all week, only able to get online a few times so I have missed posting!  All is fixed now thanks to my handy husband & I'll be back posting next week!  Enjoy your weekend!

Monday, September 17, 2012

Book Review – “From Fatigued to Fantastic”

I’ve been trying to read From Fatigued to Fantastic for months.  I’ve heard wonderful things about it, and the author, Jacob Teitelbaum, M.D.,  a board certified internist and leading researcher in the field of chronic fatigue and fibromyalgia.  Read many articles on his web site   I finally got the chance to finish reading it this weekend, enjoying some great weather here in AZ!

His treatment plan is customized for each person by having you answer questions at the end of each chapter and marking off recommendations in an appendix, and also stresses that you should be working with your Dr. in choosing the right treatment path.  If you don’t have a Dr. that is willing to treat your fibro, you need a new Dr.!  There are suggestions in the book for that as well.

The recommended treatment options center around the S.H.I.N.E. protocol.  Sleep, Hormones, Infections, Nutrition, and Exercise.  His claim (based on over 30 years working with fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue patients) is that by following this protocol, it will alleviate the symptoms associated with severe fatigue and body pain.

    SLEEP: Get adequate sleep, preferably eight to nine hours a night. Sleep replenishes the body's energy and heals its muscles. Inadequate sleep will leave you exhausted and in pain.

    HORMONES: Get tested for hormone deficiency and treated if needed. Hormone deficiencies can contribute to fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue syndrome.

    INFECTIONS: Get treatment when symptoms of infections occur. The lack of restorative sleep in CFS/FM leads to dysfunctional immune systems. Underlying viral, bacterial, bowel, sinus and yeast infections are common and can be a contributing cause or result of CFS/FM.

    NUTRITON: To maintain normal health and optimal energy levels you need to be sure you body is getting a proper balance of nutrition, particularly as nutritional deficiencies can result from CFS/FM. Vitamin B-12, magnesium, Acetyl L-Carnitine, glutathione, as well as your basic A, B, C and D vitamins are especially vulnerable to depletion from this.

    EXERCISE: Exercise as able. After 10 weeks on the 4 steps above, you will be able to slowly increase your exercise-without being wiped out the next day!

Each chapter goes into detail in each of these areas and is backed by scientific studies and the latest research.  I learned A LOT about the body reading this book.  I am very motivated to try and focus on each of these areas with my Dr., in order, and try to improve my life even more!

You can “like” Dr. T's facebook page and ask questions directly to him, as well as connect with others following his recommendations, and keep updated on the most current information.

I bought this as an actual book, not on my Kindle this time and I’m glad I did.  It made taking the quizzes easier.  You can find it on his web site or look for it on Amazon if you prefer used, or Kindle edition.

I HIGHLY recommend you read this book if you have fibromyalgia or chronic fatigue.  It is extremely educational and great to have on your shelf for reference whenever a symptom of these conditions is bothering you.  And the best part is the custom treatment plan that will get you moving in the direction to better health!

Friday, September 14, 2012

Photo Friday!

You are welcome to download and use this photo with my watermark.  Share it on Facebook, Pinterest, or use it as a screensaver. (photos are not to be sold, or used for advertising, please link back to my shop when using photos online)  If you would like to purchase a print without the watermark, visit my shop on Etsy.  Discount prices for Friday Photos!

Have a restful restorative weekend!!!

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Overwhelmed – What do You do?

Stacked - watercolor - Rebekah Bell (miniature in a series about being overwhelmed)
It’s been a busy few weeks for me.  I thought I was handling things well, but the past couple days I have just needed to stop.  No the pain isn’t bad, but it’s there at the end of the day.  The fatigue has caught up with me a few times.  Too many things demanding attention and I’ve not been managing my energy as well as I can.  I wouldn’t say I’m in a “flare” but definitely walking the line.  So here I sit with my to-do list crossing off everything that doesn’t NEED to be done, and a few things that DO.  Frustrating to say the least.  Especially knowing I will let people down, I have already let myself down.  I’m sure you all have been here, sitting where I am today.  So where do we go from here?   Where do we turn to keep this from spiraling down into a flare, or depression? 

First, we need to look in the right direction.

“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.” Matthew 11:28

Next, think “Big Picture.”

“We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair;  persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed.  We always carry around in our body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be revealed in our body.” 
2 Corinthians 4:8-10

Believe that God can and will restore you.

“Do you not know?
    Have you not heard?
The Lord is the everlasting God,
    the Creator of the ends of the earth.
He will not grow tired or weary,
    and his understanding no one can fathom.
He gives strength to the weary
    and increases the power of the weak.
Even youths grow tired and weary,
    and young men stumble and fall;
but those who hope in the Lord
    will renew their strength.
They will soar on wings like eagles;
    they will run and not grow weary,
    they will walk and not be faint.”  Isaiah 40:28-31

I hear Jesus calling me when in Matthew he says “Come to me…”  So I will be spending my day with Him.  And it will not be a wasted day, it will be a day of rest and restoration!  What will I do?  I will read his word, I will pray, I will journal and I will do some art.  I will take care of my little one and play, pick kids up from school, make meals for my family and in Jesus' name, not let this day take me down!

“For the Spirit God gave us does not make us timid, but gives us power, love and self-discipline.” 2 Tim. 1:7