Clean, Pure, Organic Ingredients to Nourish your skin? I’m In!!

Clean, Pure, Organic Ingredients to nourish your skin! When I saw that, I was intrigued. I wasn’t hooked instantaneously, I’m not gonna lie to you. Why? Because I like to do my research and make sure all my I’s are dotted, and T’s are crossed.

I began my search for skin care products that were, gluten-free, chemical free, had transparent ingredient lists, sensitive to the environment, made in the USA, vegan, and no animal testing. It was a big list of wants, well my needs, to be exact.

If you remember anything about what I’ve blogged about over the years you know that Gluten Free living is my lifestyle. It’s been that way since 2012. It has not only gone from foods that I eat, but it also encompasses the products I use in my daily life. Shampoo, toothpaste, soap, lotions, skin creams & potions. You get it. Pretty much everything.

We as a society are aware of what we put IN our bodies. Why aren’t we aware of what we put ON our bodies?

img_0936Chemicals get absorbed through the skin into our bodies and wreak havoc upon us. Some it’s quite apparent in the form of symptoms, and for others it slowly shows up in various ways. We are all created differently, and react differently, I tend to react quickly when something is not right for me. Either in hives, patches, dry spots, you name it I get it.

So it was crucial for me to find something that I could trust to be sensitive to my skin, yet deliver results that I was looking for. And I’m looking for results.

I’m 42 (gasp) middle age (whatever) !! I’m just Paula, and Paula wants to take care of her skin like she did when she was in her teens and 20’s. You know, before life took over and time for self-care went out the window with dinner dishes, and life crisis.

I’m on my journey of reclaiming “self-care” I don’t know if that’s an actual thing or not, but I guess because I’m calling it that, it is now. I’ve lost myself in the mixture of life events, and at some point we need to be our own life-preserver. Ok will skin care be my life preserver? Probably not. BUT Max & Madeleine is helping me reclaim a little bit of myself slowly, and I like slowly, because too much too soon burns you out. I like this little journey I decided to give myself, and if in the midst of my journey of self-care, I can help someone else out that’s amazing to me.

I’m very frank in this blog, so lets keep that realness here for a moment so forgive me if I offend anyone. But. I’m not one of those pushy bitchy sales people. That’s not me, never has been, never will be. I’m not going to try to sell you the Brooklyn Bridge, I want to show you what these products have done for me. I will be real with you, and you can be real with me. If you don’t particularly like or care for Organic, Clean, Non-Toxic ingredients, then so be it. Keep on keeping on with your current product line I have no problem with that. But if you are interested in cleaner, more purposeful products, ask me a question. If I have the answer I’ll let you know, if I don’t then I’ll get it for you somehow.

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Clean, Pure, Organic Ingredients with a purpose. For babies to grandparents there is a product for everyone. A Boo Boo stick, Healing balm, hair detaingeler, deodorant, acne prone teen/adult skin, and even anti aging serums & elixirs (woohoo my crow’s-feet are doing a scaredy pants dance) 😉 After 13 days of using the Rose Hibiscus Toner Water, my skin feels tighter, and more refreshed. I’ve also just started using the Skin Rescue Anti-Aging Serum & Skin Rescue Intensive Repair Eye Elixir (today) and I’m looking forward to the results. And as for that bomb Healing Balm, it’s been doing wonders for Davids skin & mine as well. Keep an eye out for some before and after photos, although I’m not sure David will want me posting his picture around the world just yet, close friends have commented how good his skin has been looking the last 2 weeks. So it’s definitely working it’s magic.

Are these miracle workers? Nope, but they sure come close.

What do you have to lose?

∞A moment of time to ask a question.

∞A 30 day money back guarantee if you’re not completely satisfied with a product.

∞Phalates, Parabens, Toxic Chemicals, Gluten, just to name a few.

Not to shabby if you ask me.

You can follow my Max & Madeleine Journey at Facebook.com/blissfullyorganicliving

and shop my catalog at-  shop.maxandmadeleine.com/pauladonnolo

**Disclaimer. This is not a paid advertisement, but I am an Independent Advisor for Max & Madeleine products. I not only sell the products but I also use them. These views are solely my own and have not been paid for by the company I independently sell for. 

 

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I am that friend.

img_0480Do you have a friend who seems distant, not themselves?

Do you feel neglected, like you don’t know them anymore?

Well, there’s something I wish people understood. Maybe that friend who seems to have fallen off the face of the earth isn’t ignoring you, purposely. Maybe they are trying to deal with their own shit, and by becoming quiet, reclusive, distant, etc. is their way of dealing.

Even if it seems not to be their “normal” reaction, maybe their new normal is qute taxing. It seems easy enough to reach out and ask, “How have you been, I haven’t heard from you in a while, is everythig ok?”

Instead of reacting “Oh *insert name here* doesn’t want to be bothered with me anymore because life must be grand!”

Don’t make it about you, until you ask and find out.

Sometimes people retreat because they really don’t know what to do, and they’re just going through the motions of life as best they can.

Moral of the story…ask, don’t assume, you might be surprised, and you just might be offering a saving hand.

 

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I woke up this morning and realized, I am that friend.

Through no intentional fault of my own, I have become that person.

Life gets in the way. Life is not always rainbows and unicorns, I say this constantly. Life is an ever evolving work in progress, and sometimes, our progress stalls, crashes down around us, and… we retreat.

Why do we do this?

I’ve no clue.

But it happens. Then one day you finally realize it, and you find yourself saying WTF! How did I let this happen? What was the turning point?

And then you see it, maybe there was no one specific thing, it was all the little things in life taking space, taking precedence. Life as you knew it had changed, and a new world order took over. Head first into the abyss, and you either sink, or swim, or hold on to the edge of the pool…and hope your bathing suit doesn’t fall off.

This is not a WOE is me tale, this is a WHOA is me tale.

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Big difference. It has a mixture of woe’s and whoa’s. But what a more compassionate world this would be if more people took the time to ask “How are you doing?” instead of being on the defensive. I know this isn’t always the case, and some people are downright rude and obnoxious, only thinking about themselves, and truly couldn’t give a rats ass about you and your problems, so they ignore you. Yet a lot of people walk this earth daily, putting on a brave face so no one is the wiser to their turmoil. It takes a lot of work to put on that brave face, and sometimes that brave face takes all the effort some people can muster.

But remember, not everyone is the same. Not everyone deals with trials like you do. So ask, ask the next time you feel slighted.

What do you have to lose? The friendship that is no longer serving your well being? So be it if that is the case, because then You will benefit in the end by freeing yourself of a toxic relationship. Isn’t that refreshing? Isn’t that glorious, to free yourself of what weighs you down?

BUT if by you reaching out for a few moments of a conversation to a friend who seems distant, helps them from teetering on the edge of the abyss, then aren’t both of you better off in the end?

I think the answer is quite simple, don’t you?

 

You have become the bully you so valiantly admonish!

Living in America, we are afforded certain inalienable rights. Freedom of speech is one of them. But in that freedom comes responsibility. Responsibility not to spew forth, hate, vitriol, falsehoods, or “Alternative Facts” as Facts. What I’m getting at is…what do you do to a child who outright lies to you, over and over again? Do you not correct their wrongdoings with some sort of consequence? Is there not a punishment for lying to a parent, guardian, or any other human being? If in fact the lie was outright egregious, then it should be handled as a lie, if however it was just misinformation or poor knowledge, it should also be handled accordingly as to rectify the wrongdoings.

Or am I wrong? Would you just continue to let your child lie to you and countless others, because it’s “Their Truth” ?

I doubt any good parent would knowingly allow their child to lie, without reprimanding them and teaching them the lessons of right and wrong. I’m reminded of the little story “The boy who cried wolf.” keep lying and no one will believe you when you’re really telling the truth. Eventually it happens, and when it does, I’m sure the circumstances are not idyllic.

I’ve seen much in the ways of propaganda, lies, and just outlandish juvenile behavior from people who I both admire, and associate with as friends, acquaintances, etc. I understand the right to have opposing opinions on various subjects, and I get a good meme from time to time is a quick way to show how you’re really feeling at the moment about a particular situation at hand, but come on people show a little decorum. Show a little respect. For yourselves.

When you are bashing the Woman’s March on DC, and posting a meme that says, “Get back in the kitchen where you belong, and make me a sandwich.”  “Trump got more than a million woman out exercising in one day than, Michelle Obama did in eight years” You are what’s wrong with this world. You are portraying nothing less than childish behavior at the expense at another human being. You are showing your children how to behave and act in this world, you are grooming our boys into men, and showing our girls where their place is in this world as well. Ultimatley you’re doing nothing to promote your cause.

You have become the Bully you so valiantly admonish! 

Think about that for a moment, and let it sink in.

By showing, or saying certain things, attacking groups of people, you are no better than the gum on the bottom of my shoe. And trust me I’m being kind by suggesting that.

You don’t need to be a feminist, to have compassion, dignity, and acceptance of others/things that are different from you. You have to be a human. Plain and simple it doesn’t get easier than that.

I have witnessed on my Facebook feed countless meme’s of hate and anger towards feminists, women in general, LGBTQ, African-Americans, etc and each and almost every one of those people who are posting, always have a savvy meme or copy and paste diatribe of words that they have scooped up from someone who is on a warpath. Hardly any of them have put into their own words what they really feel. Again I get the quick wit of just copying and sharing something that aligns with your thoughts and feelings, I’ve done it myself on occasion.

The most recent one I’ve seen circulating Facebook is one of  a particular status that expresses the reason why women did not support the marches.

First let me say, you don’t have to support the march, you should respect those that feel the need to march, however. You must realize that not everyone has the same advantages as you or I for that matter. We are afforded the right to peaceful protest under the US Constitution, we should take advantage of it. I’m not saying violence is acceptable, there is a distinct line between violent protests, and those that are peaceful. I support peaceful protests, even if I don’t participate with them, or feel they align with my values. Everyone is entitled to opinions, as you are entitled to not agree with the protests that have taken place, but to bash another person for feeling the need to stand up for what they believe is, is like telling you not to hold your beliefs true. Isn’t it?

I’m not sitting behind this monitor telling you your ideals are wrong. I don’t agree with you, but I’m not telling you you’re wrong, unless your promoting a lie.

Most of the women who are protesting are doing so because they have at one time or another felt disrespected, held down, belittled, abused, treated as second class citizens, etc. They feel at this point this is how to get their voices heard. And although we were heard in the election, our countries election process does not believe in popular vote. If you still believe that Hillary only won the popular vote because of illegal immigrant votes, I have a bridge to sell you.

You don’t have to agree with those that chose to march, you do however need to stop living a life of “I” and instead of stating…

I’m not disrespected

I’ve never felt that way before

I’ve never been abused

I don’t believe in their cause…

How about remove yourself from the equation, and think about THEM. Why are they doing what they are doing. I’m thrilled that You haven’t endured the atrocities that many of these women have faced, and are trying to prevent. I’m saddened by their experiences and the fact that this election has elicited such emotion from them that they are scared. Scared of what could happen, scared of what is happening slowly to our future. I’ve had my own share of problems in life, some that no one will ever know of, but when I hear and see things that so many people are saying it shakes me to my soul, because I know of what possiblilites stand on the other side of that door.

I don’t mind a world with varying opinions, I actually encourage thought-provoking, intelligent ones, but what I do mind is hate! Hate from people I call, friends, acquaintances, colleagues, family… it’s sickening, sad, and angers me.

Instead of bashing one another, or dismissing someones cause, how about you ask them why they are doing what they are doing. Ask them if you can help, even if in another way. You don’t need to stand with them in solidarity marching through the streets, but you should however offer a shoulder or a listening ear for their cause. If at the end of the conversation, you still can’t accept their ideas, wish them well… and walk away.

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Walking away isn’t bad, actually it’s quite acceptable, but be respectful. I understand that there is hate and negativity on both sides.  I remember the days of seeing memes referencing monkeys, and posts of violence against, President Obama, but of course many people tend to forget what has happened in the past. People who felt those posts were horrible are constantly told to “Buckle up butter cup. Stop being a snowflake. Go away and color. Find a safe place”  Those same people who were telling you were to go back then are at it now, but with a sense of power and authority behind them because “our guy won and your bitch lost” But remember this one thing, the past predicts the future, and our past is dark, we must do all we can to change the future, and the only way to change that is to change ourselves. Keep standing up for the truth.

If we constantly bash one another, even in a joking manner, it is still negative energy being let out into this glorious world we inhabit. Let us be better than our past, better than our worse selves, and better than someone who can not see past themselves.

Time to Make America LOVE Again!

This morning I decided to go browse my Facebook feed to see what the world was up to. Oh what a clusterfuck it was. To my dismay it was yet another diatribe of bullshit spewed forth by people who have nothing better to say. At least nothing constructive. What I mean is this:

On a daily basis, I see hate, ignorance, and pure evil flowing forth like Niagara Falls. No matter the topic at hand, Politics, Religion, Race, Gender, Who’s lives matter more than another… the list goes on. Wake up~ We all matter equally. Hate is dominating, I’m not sure if it’s coming from a point of view of pure evil, sheer misunderstanding of another persons personal beliefs, or ignorance that there are all kinds of people who make the world go round. Unfortunately within the mix evil exists. Hate exists, and it’s sickening me to my core.

People don’t realize that a snide comment about a person’s character, gender,  or sexual preference, has far more reaching consequences than the topic at hand. This morning I was compelled to write a post, (it is shown below) which some could assume is just about politics.

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Sorry to disappoint you, but politics may be what I’m seeing today specifically, but generally speaking, attacks about another persons character happen all the time. Either in a meme or in a direct comment/post etc. Shows so much maturity and intelligence when you’re attacking someone in that manner.

The old saying, “What you say about another person says more about you as a person, than it does about the person whom you’re talking about” Yes it speaks volumes. How can you be taken seriously if all you do is attack?

These comments have far more reaching consequences than the immediate moment. They travel through time and space and occupy the deepest crevices of our mind. They grow with us, with our children, and future generations. One could argue that a simple meme depicting ignorance about a political figure, sexual preference or anything for that matter is simply trivial. But in reality those small fissures in time of arrogance set a precedent for future attacks upon people. It’s a wonderful thing to teach the youth of today, an untarnished mindset that is still evolving and developing. Showing them that if you don’t like someone for their perceived differences just tell them to go fuck off, that they don’t matter,  they are not important, their point of view is irrelevant, they are worthless, they are wrong, and you’ve got the perfect meme to show them just how wrong they are.
Because at the end of the day, all the little comments made about someone different from you, who doesn’t agree with you, because your point of view matters more, is just what the world needs more of.
No, Dorothy what the world needs more of is Love, Compassion, Understanding, Acceptance, Open Mindedness, and all around RESPECT for each other.
There are certain things that make us who we are as individuals, it’s either Biological, or Environmental. Guess what I think it is that makes a person so hateful…Then again, what do I know? I don’t have a catchy meme to go with this post, do I?

Nature vs. Nurture, thank you for your compliment anyway

pregnant-woman-1130611_640No matter where I go there are children all around. A store, a park, even just now while I’m at the coffee shop trying to write a post for the day. Kids are everywhere. And they are drawn to me like a magnet. It’s all good, and I will happily oblige a curious conversation, play with a dolly, or action figure, read a line from a book that’s sitting nearby, and even listen to baby babble that hardly anyone can understand.

Kids have always seen me, smiled, and started engaging with me for as long as I can remember. I would be told “You just have a way with them, a demeanor they can feel comfortable with. Kids are like animals, if they sense something bad or off with you, they will let you know.”

Just now, as I sipped my Iced Cinnamon Americano, thinking about writing about what NOT to say to a woman who doesn’t have children of her own at my age, a little girl no more than 2 years old decided to walk away from her mother’s side and come sit with me at my table.

She stood by the table side and showed me her dolly. Baby Doll is her name. Baby Doll wanted to read the stories that were in the Coffee Book. The ones that tell you all about coffee beans from harvest to poured in your cup. Obviously, the little girl didn’t know what the book entailed but she wanted to read it. So I happily started going through the book she handed me, as she pulled the empty seat out and started to climb up to have a seat and listen to the story I would read. All while mom was apologetic for her daughters intrusion of my personal space.

I assured mom that all was good and I was happy to read to her daughter. So we flipped through the book (which is a photo album) and as I’m holding the book, and Baby Doll, I started to create a story which was more on her level of understanding than the technical aspect of harvesting beans.

“See this picture right here, this is a coffee bean. Once it’s grown up they take the bean and make the coffee that your Mommy and I are drinking right now.”

“Mmmmm coffee.” she says with a smile on her face.

As Mom is still apologizing for the intrusion. I assure her again that had I had a better book to read, and she didn’t mind, I would have happily entertained her; as I love to see children reading. Mom so happened to have “Goodnight Moon” in her free hand. We laughed a little and she said…

“You must be an awesome Mom for sure! Thank you for taking time to read to her, and not be totally annoyed by the interruption. Your kids are really lucky to have you as a Mom”

I honestly didn’t know what to say except, thank you.

Do I reply “Oh I don’t have kids” and make the person feel bad for assuming?

It was in that moment I just took the compliment and thanked her for it. I have often said, I am not a mom by nature, but by nurture I sure as hell am. I’ve mothered many children over the years, and although I don’t hold that title specifically I do almost everything a mother does, except for birthing and breast-feeding.

Let me be clear, I was not offended at all by the compliment and kind words of this stranger. Her observation of my caring nature, made her associate me with a mother. That’s totally fine. In fact I found her statement to be quite nice, and was definitely appreciative of what she said. However, at my age, I’ve heard many comments about why I don’t have children. Questioning the reasons why there are no little ones running around. Just as a pregnant woman gets tired of all the questions regarding breast or bottle, names, staying home or going back to work, and the list goes on. Still not sure what gives someone the right to question and ask why. That becomes annoying. Just like asking how much money someone has in the bank, or what their weight is, or any other possibly intrusive questions you could think of.

Why do you have the need to ask

  • Why or why not?
  • Is it a choice?
  • Can you not have children?
  • If you can have them, why wouldn’t you want them?
  • Why haven’t you had any yet?
  • You’re getting old, the clock is running out.
  • Don’t you want to go through the experience of having a baby?
  • Don’t you want to make your Mom a Grandma?
  • Don’t you want to be called Mom?
  • It’s not fair you have to raise someone elses children but not have any of your own, why wouldn’t you want to have your own too?  *Let me clear this one up before someone jumps to conclusions~ I don’t raise my boyfriends children, they have a Mom & Dad. I am Dad’s Girlfriend. I am around a lot, and I care deeply about these boys, but I will never replace their Mom. She is, and always will be, Mom. I’m an extra special person that cares and loves them unconditionally, because I want to, not because I have to. 

People chose to judge, jump to conclusions, and place their own self-proclaimed feelings, thoughts, wants and/or needs (that might even be their own truths/issues that they are fearful of acknowledging) upon someone else. It’s called projecting.

IMG_5890-0My capacity to love, care, nurture, etc. has no bearing on whether or not I give birth to a child. Nature does not need to provide me a biological child for me to be a nurturing woman.

That solely has to do with my nature, capacity to love, and my personality.

It’s also my body, my choice, maybe or maybe not, and a collective decision made by two adults on what they want/need, can/can’t have in their relationship. If you must cast judgement or just have a curious nature, maybe broach your question with some care and a little class so you don’t come across like a nosy little ass!

 

 

 

 

Dear, Elle Magazine. Celiac is a Disease, not a Joke. #Iamthatfriend

So this morning, as I’m scrolling through my Facebook feed, I happened upon a post from one of my favorite Celiac Bloggers~ Gluten Dude. He was up in arms again, and rightfully so, over a cartoon published by Elle Magazine. You can read his heartfelt reaction in the link above. This cartoon, got my blood boiling. Seriously, Elle do you really find it funny to tease about a Disease?

I rarely get so frustrated, because let’s face it, people are assholes. There are plenty out there that think an autoimmune disease is just something that’s in your head. Well, get your head out of your ass and wake up. It’s not a joke. It’s real. And there is no cure. Except, eating strictly Gluten Free. There is no pill, no cream, nothing but elimination of Gluten. Plain and simple. Got it? Good.
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Here’s the thing, Elle and your well-informed staff. May is Celiac Awareness Month. Bet you didn’t know that, because that would have taken some time to research.

Research, you know what that is, don’t you? It’s all shits and giggles over there in your creative department while you’re eating your bagels and drinking your beer, joking about a group of people who have a disease. Well doesn’t that make you special.

Poking fun of people who have no control over something that is debilitating in their lives. Making fun of people who can’t just take a pill to make the pain go away. Pain that not everyone can see and pain that none of us would wish upon another, except maybe some explosive diarrhea just so you have a hint of what happens to them during a glutening episode. An episode that can have lingering effects for weeks, and if untreated, can lead to devastating diagnosis that could include Cancer.

You wouldn’t make fun of someone with Cancer, now would you, Elle? No foreshame. It’s a disease. A disease people have no control over, and although there may be medications to help destroy the cause of it, it still leaves people helpless at its grimy hands.

See, there is no fun in making fun and teasing people who have a disease. Would you place a person in a wheelchair in that bubble? An MS sufferer in that bubble? Cancer patient? You get my point, don’t you?

You disgust me!

Anyone who makes fun of a disease, disgusts me. How can you be so cruel. Yeah I’m just a little pissed off at your attempt, sad sorry ass attempt at humor. Now if I wanted to make fun of myself in a lighthearted way, so be it, because there is a distinct line in humor and humiliation, degradation, callous, rude, crude…you get the point, YET!

But your commentary about this disease is just one of many in the public eye by people who are in a position of preaching to a far-reaching audience of impressionable people.

Your attempt at making fun of a disease is deplorable. And as I’m sure the sun will set tonight, I’m sure you probably won’t ever see this post, or the comment I made on your Facebook post about this either. But that’s ok. If I can at least get one more person to see, that this is NOT A JOKE, it’s a Disease. Then that is more than enough for me. You are not alone in this, and as much as I dislike giving you and your business attention, I think that my small blast at your poor attempt at humor will balance out in the end.

Karma if you will. Or maybe you and your staff will research Celiac Disease, and maybe do some volunteer work, or at least take the disease seriously.

#Iamthatfriend

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#AtoZChallenge V is for Good Vibes

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I’m sure you’ve undoubtedly heard the above saying during your lifetime, but how often do you really take notice of what it’s saying?

The vibe you possess and give off to the universe is the vibe you get in return. Like Karma returning to you as you send it out to the world with your actions, words, and good or bad doings. All things come back around.

So if at the end of the day you feel that your tribe is lacking sorely, then you should take inventory of your vibe that you’re putting out to the world. If your portraying negative vibes, you’re going to attract just that. However when meeting new people I immediately get a sense of them, their vibe no doubt. I often try not to overthink about this particular fact, but let’s be honest, first impressions especially a sneaky, conniving, despicable vibe is not one to just look over.

Those first instincts, gut instincts we get about people are 99% of the time spot on truth. So if your sensing negative vibes from those around you, and you don’t want to be surrounded by negativity ( I mean really who want’s that nastiness in their circle) then move on. It will do you so much good to keep moving on and away from the negative nellies.

And at the end of the day a little old school Marky Mark Good Vibrations always does some good. At least I think so 😉