From skeptic to enthusiast: our essential oils journey

Warning – photos of a fresh and then healed burn are displayed in this post.

For around the past year, I have been interested in Essential Oils every time I see them pop up in my Facebook news feed, which is pretty often. However, being that my mother was quite the hardened skeptic and insisted that we were just fine with our Tylenol and Benadryl, thank you very much, I was never able to talk her into giving it a try.

Until.

One fateful afternoon, my 4-year-old “baby” sister spilled a bowl of ramen noodles on herself, causing large, deep 2nd degree burns on her neck, face, and torso.

She had to be rushed to the ER, and later was referred to a burn specialist at Cook Children’s Hospital.

This is Peyton 48 hours after being burned, at the appointment where she was sent to a burn specialist. Our family doctor said this was beyond her scope of care.

First-burn-photos

Once at Cook’s, she was heavily bandaged and prescribed Silvadene cream. However, the doctors kept reiterating that the cream was very strong and that it was VERY important not to let Peyton get it into her mouth or eyes, as is would be harmful if ingested. You can imagine how difficult this might be with a 4 year old, especially since some of the burned area was on her face. So my mom decided to inquire about a gentler, more natural remedy: lavender oil.

The burn specialist replied that she had heard some good reports about lavender oil for burn treatment, but as she had not personally used it, she could only recommend Silvadene cream or antibiotic ointments. However, she encouraged us to feel free to do our own research and trusted us to exercise good judgment.

Here is Peyton 1 week post-burn, after being treated with a roll-on mixture of vitamin E oil, castor oil, and lavender oil multiple times per day.

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At this appointment, the burn specialist was VERY impressed with the quick progress and encouraged us to keep doing whatever we were doing!

After this experience, my mom, formerly a hardened skeptic, was ALL OVER Young Living Essential Oils! We quickly ordered the starter kit and have been enjoying these natural, non-toxic remedies to many different ailments, including:

  • headache
  • acne
  • allergies
  • colds
  • menstrual cramps
  • sore muscles
  • stomach ache
  • swimmer’s ear
  • sunburn

Needless to say, we are now quite the enthusiasts!  And believe me, it takes some good solid evidence for my mom to make such a drastic change in viewpoints.  After seeing with my own eyes what essential oils did for my baby sister, I would strongly encourage anyone to give these powerful, homeopathic treatments a shot!

If this has piqued your interest and you would like to learn more about essential oils and why we use Young Living, click here.

Young Living Essential Oils

What are Essential Oils?

An essential oil is the extremely concentrated form of the oil of the plant from which is was extracted.  Although the recent explosion of popularity surrounding them may make it seem like this is some new fad, essential oils have been used medicinally for thousands of years – according to this Wikipedia article, the earliest recorded instructions for distilling essential oils dates to the 13th century!  Even the Bible contains many references to essential oils – for example, baby Jesus received a gift of Frankincense.

Why use Essential Oils?

Essential Oils are the perfect powerful, organic, homeopathic replacement for many conventional drugs.  In under a month, using only the oils found in Young Living’s Premium Starter Kit, my family discovered treatments for the following ailments:

  • headache
  • acne
  • allergies
  • colds
  • menstrual cramps
  • sore muscles
  • stomach ache
  • swimmer’s ear
  • sunburn

For anyone interested in putting fewer chemicals into their body, Essential Oils offer the perfect solution!  They are gentle, all-natural alternatives to common household drugs such as Tylenol, Benadryl, and many more.  In addition, they are often used under medical supervision as powerful treatments for more serious illness or injury.  When my baby sister spilled soup on herself, resulting in deep second degree burns, lavender oil provided her with quick healing and relief.  Anyone willing to test them out will quickly find a myriad of uses for Essential Oils.

 

Why Young Living?

My family uses Young Living Essential Oils for many reasons:

  • You are guaranteed to get what you pay for.  Even though FDA regulations dictate that products labeled as “Essential Oils” only need to contain 5% of the actual oil, Young Living guarantees their oils to be 100% pure.
  • Young Living oils are free of synthetic chemicals, making them safer for you, your family, and your friends.
  • Young Living completes the entire production process, from seed to seal, on their own farms.  This is not only environmentally responsible, but also means that strict quality control is ensured throughout every step of production.
  • While many oils may be labeled “organic” and still contain chemicals, Young Living holds their oils to a standard that is “beyond organic” – demanding only the purest, highest quality oils.
  • Finally, take a look at this graphic showing how Young Living stacks up against other companies:

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(Source)

For these reasons, I and many others feel safest in the hands of the Young Living company!

 

Why the Premium Starter Kit?

When just starting out, I strongly encourage starting with the Premium Starter Kit.  This $300 value comes with 11 different oils and blends which are perfect for treating many common household ailments!  Starting with this wide variety of oils gives you a unique opportunity to test out the many different properties of each and find out what works best for you and your family, which may be difficult when starting out with only a couple of individual oils.

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In addition, the kit come with a home diffuser, several sample packs to share with your friends and family, and more!

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Personally, my very favorite part of this kit is the diffuser, which I plan on using heavily when I go back to school in the fall! I’ve heard great things about how diffusing oils can help with avoiding all of the bugs that go around in a dorm, which is definitely something I’m interested in.

Is it expensive?

At $150, a Young Living Premium Starter Kit may seem expensive at first glance.  I will fully admit that as a poor college student, the cost can seem quite prohibitive at first.  However, after breaking down the prices of the different components, I found that it is actually quite affordable!  Here is my breakdown:

  • The kit comes with 11 oils and blends.  Without accounting for anything extra, that would put the cost per bottle of oil at $13.64.  For reference, a 100 pack of Extra Strength Tylenol, which provides 50 doses, costs $12.99.
  • Since Young Living Essential Oils are so powerful, typically only one or perhaps two drops per treatment are used diluted in a carrier oil.  Each 5 mL bottle in the Premium Starter Kit contains approximately 85 drops, placing it at an equal or greater value than conventional over-the-counter drugs – all while providing the benefit of all-natural relief!
  • The home diffuser – an absolute must-have for me – is alone nearly a $100 value.  With this out of the picture, that brings the price per bottle down to just $4.55 for up to 85 treatments!
  • Additionally, keep in mind that this kit includes much more than just the diffuser and 11 oils.  According to Young Living, the Premium Starter Kit includes the following:

Everyday Oils collection, Home Diffuser, Welcome to Young Living booklet, Essential Oils at a Glance user’s guide, Distributor Resource Guide, S.E.E.D. Sharing for Success booklet, Stress Away 5-ml, AromaGlide Roller Fitment, two Lavender Sample Packets, two Peppermint Sample Packets, two Peace & Calming Sample Packets, two Lemon Sample Packets, two Thieves Sample Packets, Sample Packet Business Cards, two NingXia Red 2-oz. samples, Distributor Agreement, Product Guide and Product Price List.

With all of this in mind, the Premium Starter Kit really offers the best bang for your buck when you are first starting out on your Essential Oils journey.

How do I get started?

I’m glad you asked!  Getting started with Essential Oils is easy as 1-2-3, and the benefits are limitless!  Here is a simple step-by-step guide to get you going.

1.  Open this Young Living sign-up page.

2.  Check the “Wholesale” option – this will give you a 24% discount!  Additionally, it leaves open the option of becoming a distributer if you should happen to become interested in that after experience all that Essential Oils have to offer!

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3.  Make sure that this number – 1951644 – shows up in the “sponsor” and “enroller” box.  This is my member number, and making sure you enter it will let me know that you signed up so that I can help you out if you should have any questions!

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4.  Fill in your personal information.  Make extra sure to include your email address!  If you do, I can find you on Facebook and add you to a closed group for Essential Oil users.  It contains tons of information and advice!

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5.  There will be a box requesting your social security number.  Don’t be alarmed – no one will be able to view this.  If you choose to enter it, Young Living can send you a check for referring people with your user ID!  If you choose not to, that’s ok too.  Just remember to enter it if you’re expecting a commission!

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6.  Select your kit!  Make extra sure to choose the Premium Starter Kit if you want the best bang for your buck!  In addition, I will mail a free Young Living Pocket Reference - a super duper handy $25 value – to everyone who buys a Premium Starter Kit.

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7.  If you would like to pick an optional Essential Rewards kit, do so at step 3!  If not, choose “No thank you” and continue on to the final step.

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8.  Enter your payment information.

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And that’s it!  Quick, easy, and SO worth it.

If you choose to start your Young Living Essential Oil journey, leave a comment below telling us what your favorite part of this kit is!

Make sure to check back soon for individual profiles of each oil and blend included in the Premium Starter Kit.

 

 

Random updates

Yeah, I haven’t posted in forever.  Don’t hate.

This is the LAST WEEK OF SCHOOL!!!!  Next week is finals and then I get to go home!  This is awesome.  And also why I haven’t been posting.

Anyways, on to the random updates:

  • I started an Etsy shop.  No one has bought anything.  Yeah.
  • I’ll be leaving this semester with 38 hours.  I’m taking 2 online classes over the summer and planning to CLEP out of 4 classes, so I should come into next semester with 56 hours, which is very sadly JUST short of the 60 I would need to live in an on-campus apartment instead of a dorm.  Boo hoo.  Anyways, I am still looking at the possibility of graduating in 3 years total (2 years from now), which is exciting.
  • I get to take a painting class next semester!!  I am super excited because I’ve barely had a chance to paint yet but I love it!  I wasn’t supposed to take this class for another year I think, but the professor is also my advisor and is getting me in early because he wants me to go ahead and start putting out some of my own work.
  • Oh yeah, I had a birthday and turned 19.  My amazing boyfriend got me a student membership to the Oklahoma City Museum of Art and I took some totally awesome pictures when we went.  The blown glass is seriously SO COOL:

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  • I did self portraits of me & Calvin for my figure drawing class.  His turned out better than mine did:

calvin self portrait

madison self portrait

  • Other random recent pictures I like:

 

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(Yeah, he has a black eye… it’s a longish funny story that I may or may not tell later.)

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Now if I just survive finals, y’all may be hearing from me more frequently this summer!

I LIVE!!!

Sorry for falling off the face of the earth, guys.  I kept up the daily blogging thing for an entire month and then it DIED.  I just don’t have time, and I’m not doing anything interesting enough to warrant writing about every single day.

So, a recap of what’s been up these past couple of weeks, in pictures first:

brownie mix

 

I found this at Target the other day.  Life = MADE.  They’re gluten free!  And microwave!  And BROWNIES!!!  Perfect for a Celiac college student!

wax pillars

Saw these at the store the other day… and you thought they were candles.

rose petals

 

I took this picture at a 50th wedding anniversary party and I love it!

valentines day

 

Valentine’s Day

 

I’ve been hammered with homework for 2D Design.  Recently we had an assignment to produce TEN PIECES that was given on Tuesday and due on Thursday.  As in, THAT Thursday.  In 2 days.  So that was fun.  Right now I’m working on a project where we have to take a picture of our face and represent it 6 different ways.  I’ll try to post pictures when I’m done with it.

I went to Target the other day and found a bunch of shirts on sale for $3, so I bought four!  Target has really good sales sometimes… but WHY do they always have the sale stuff in the maternity section?  Awkward.

Ghiradelli dark chocolate squares with raspberry filling are the best EVER.  Enough said.

I had 4 tests within a 10 day span these past 2 weeks, one for speech and 3 for Bible.  I’ve only gotten the grades back for two of them, but I made a 98 and a 100 so I’m not really worried about the other two.

I can’t remember if I mentioned it before, but Calvin & I recently discovered this amazing place called Top That Pizza that’s basically like a Subway for pizza, and they have a gluten free crust option!!  It’s REALLY good and we have been going all the time because when we split a pizza, it’s the same price that it would be to go to Chick Fil A or somewhere like that.  Pretty cool!

Well, that’s all the recap I can think of at the moment.  Now to get back to more art homework… ugh.  I am all art-ed out for today.

 

January 29 & 30, 2014

January 29

On Mondays and Wednesdays, I have 2 Bible classes back to back (9:00 and 10:00) in the same room, and I sit in the same seat for both of them.  This is not only somewhat tedious, it also leads to me not being able to remember which Bible class an event occurred in.  People always tell me “I’m in Bible with you!” and I’m like “Which one?  I have 3.”  So yeah, that’s interesting.

Anyways, I don’t like Monday or Wednesday mornings because the professor in the firs class is loud and scary and sets me on edge for most of the day.  He also tells a LOT of jokes that he thinks are absolutely hilarious, but they’re not, so no one laughs.  Then he makes comments that are somewhat insulting about how we don’t laugh.  Repeat x15 for an entire hour.

That’s always a blast.  /sarcasm

On a brighter note, I love the professor for my second class!  He’s the sweetest old man and he always gets off on rabbit trails telling stories about things that have happened to him that somehow relate to the topic (or sometimes don’t).  He tells us “Hey, you might not learn a lot about Acts, but you’ll learn a lot about me.”

After lunch I went to mentor the little girl I see every week.  I had to go find her at recess, and all of the kids were SUPER friendly today for whatever reason.  A little girl I had never seen before ran up and hugged my legs and we had the following conversation:

Me: “Hi, what’s your name?”

Her: “It’s T_______.”

Me: “That’s a pretty name!”

Her: “Yeah, the T is for Jesus.”

Me: “………….”

OK then.

Bible study was awesome as usual and we had an interesting discussion that didn’t stay on topic at all so I’m not really sure what the topic even was.  At one point we talked about how lots of people, especially in the Church of Christ, are all about getting back to the “first century model”, but what’s interesting to me is that no one applies that to the way we evangelize.  We used homosexuality as an example. The reason we as Christians believe it’s wrong (from the New Testament at least) is that it’s mentioned several times as a sin in the epistles.  But what are the epistles?  Letters to the church members, who are already converted and believing Christians.  Whenever Paul or Peter or anyone else meets unbelievers whom they want to share the gospel with, they never launch into “being gay is wrong and so is X and Y and Z”.  Instead, they simply tell the story of Jesus and why he matters.

January 30, 2014

This morning I babysat and then had class with the teacher who I think doesn’t like me so that was lame.  After that I had my 3rd Bible class, and then I was super tired so I decided to skip figure drawing tonight since I have 4 absences anyways.  Instead, I went out with Calvin since he’s leaving for Disney World tomorrow and will be gone for over a week.

We went to this really awesome pizza place we just found caller Top That Pizza.  It’s super cool because it’s just like subway but with pizza and, get this, they have a gluten-free crust option!  I am in love.  They have like 10 different cheese choices too, which is a huge bonus  for me because I love lots of different cheeses on my pizza!  It’s priced well too – whenever Calvin and I have gone, we split a 10″ pizza and it ends up being about $11, which is what we would spend if we went to Chick-Fil-A.  Awesome!

Then we went to a frozen yogurt place right next door, and afterwards went to Target so I could get a new purse because my old one got 2 big rips in it and I have no idea how.  After that we came back and I went to bed early since I’m having to get up early and take him to the train station tomorrow so he can go back home and get ready for Disney World.

I am so jealous.

January 28, 2014

Today was really long and somewhat stressful and depressing for a variety of reasons, which I shall now reveal to you.

Firstly, I am currently being homeworked to death with assignment minutiae.  As in, I don’t have major assignments I’m working on and I do have free time on my weekends, but I always have tons of small assignments during the week that really add up and stress me out.  For instance, today I finished an essay, read 2 chapters and took a short quiz for one bible class, read the assigned reading and did a short response project for communication, and worked on a project for 2D design that is not due until a week from today and yet for some reason is required to be 25% completed by Thursday.  I also went to Hobby Lobby (twice) and sat in class for 3 hours.  Stuff I still need to do before Thursday includes finishing the 2D project up to 25%, reviewing and printing my finished essay, and finishing drawing a page full of hands for figure drawing.

See what I mean?  Homeworked to death.

Yes, I just verbed that word.

And that one.  Cuz I’m cool like that.

In addition to all of the stressful homework, I am under the distinct impression that one of my professors does not like me, and it’s rather upsetting.  All students were required to get her approval for their choice for a project, and while I stood in line to show her my ideas, I observed her having conversations with other students about which one they were thinking about, why she liked the ones she liked, what would be interesting about certain ones, etc.  When it was my turn, she glanced at my 3 choices and said “This is the only one I’m ok with”.  That’s it.  That plus lots of tinier things just really makes me feel like she dislikes me or is annoyed by me for whatever reason, and I’m usually pretty perceptive of people’s cues, so it’s kind of disappointing.  I have no idea why she feels like that.  Also, on my last assignment for that class, I received a 23/25 with absolutely no explanation of where we lost points.  It’s confusing.

Well, that’s about all the complaining I’ve got for today.  Hopefully tomorrow will be better and less crazy!

 

January 27, 2014

So I’m getting really tired of trying to make “ate food.  went to class.  did homework” exciting… so I won’t.  Here it is in quick unexciting bullet points:

  • 2 months till my birthday!
  • Drawing class got cancelled today because my professor was sick and PRAISE THE LORD for people who actually make an effort not to share their germs.
  • My favorite Bible professor (I have 3) said today, “We have fellowships at our church sometimes.  You know how we spell fellowship?  E-A-T.”
  • I photocopied a shirt today for an assignment.  Don’t ask.
  • It was cold.  Again.
  • I ate food.  Again.
  • The end.  Again.

January 26, 2014

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Picture of the day

The weather has been really erratic around here lately… it was in the 60s yesterday and supposed to get there again today, so I dressed not very warmly for church, but it was only in the 30s by that time of the morning!  It did end up warming up to mid 60s during the day, but that’s a pretty big jump!  And it’s only supposed to be 30 or so tomorrow… I’m just ready for spring.

Tonight for dinner, the cafeteria had gluten free pasta and meat sauce, so I got to have spaghetti!   This is super awesome since it’s not something I usually get.  The closest they usually come is giving me really mushy pasta with diced tomatoes and juice/sauce on top.  The gluten free food provisions seem to have improved this semester, which is completely epic since the stuff they fed me was absolutely horrible last fall.

I watched nearly all of PS: I Love You with some friends tonight (I missed the very beginning).  It was a pretty good movie!  I didn’t cry, but then I rarely do during movies.  Up and A Walk To Remember are notable exceptions.

And… that’s about it.  Sundays are usually boring homework days for me.  I didn’t actually get as much work done today as I wanted, but I got everything done that I needed to do, which will have to suffice.  Oh well.  Such is life!

January 24, 2014

Wow, I can’t believe that it’s already been a month since Christmas, and also that it’s only been a month since Christmas!  Time is weebly wobbly and all that jazz.

Today I went hiking with Calvin at a state park.  The weather was really nice.  It was about 65 and not windy.  Tomorrow is supposed to be the same, and then Monday is supposed to be in the low 30s!  Oklahoma weather can be just as crazy as Texas weather sometimes.

I got a couple of nice pictures to share:

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We got to eat lunch at a place called Top That Pizza, which is just like a Subway, but for pizza.  They had a gluten-free crust option, which was a huge win!  I was very excited and it tasted really good too.  I will definitely be going there more often!

After hiking, we went to Marble Slab for ice cream.  I had never been before and found it super cool, even though I ate too much ice cream and had a stomach ache later.  Ice cream does that to me a lot, and I can never figure out if I’m lactose intolerant (I don’t think so, since cheese isn’t an issue), if it’s just that I don’t eat a lot of dairy so lots of ice cream shocks my system, or if there’s something specific about ice cream’s combination of really rich + dairy that just doesn’t work well for me.  All I know is that I tend to forget every time that ice cream usually isn’t a good idea!  Oops.

Then Calvin & I both forgot that the cafeteria is only open for an hour on Saturday evenings, so we missed dinner there and had to go to Chick Fil A, which isn’t nearly as tragic as it sounds.  Real food was nice after eating pizza, getting dehydrated whilst hiking, and then eating a bunch of ice cream.  Yeah… I didn’t make the best food choices today.  YOLO!!!