Share Some Goodness this Holiday! Gifts that Give Back

Looking to give gifts that not are not only great gifts, but will make the gift-ee feel better as well? Life is Good, ORGANIC INDIA and Manduka make giving feel even better- and they are fantastic, ethical companies that also give back.  These are fantastic brands with really awesome items, you will love them.

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Life is Good, lifestyle brand spreading the power of optimism, from t-shirts, self-help book, mugs to comfy pj’s, introduces  the Holiday collection ($10-78) and has something for the kids, mom, the office, and even the grinch who could use some positivity in their life. There is a lot to choose from, and the quality is top notch- nothing that will have to be quickly tossed. The clothing line lasts, and wears well.  They will have their items a long, long time. (I still have a t-shirt I got in high school!) It’s nice to be able to spread a nice message wherever you go. In addition, Life is Good donates 10% of their net proceeds to kids in need-that’s something to smile about. 
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ORGANIC INDIA’s, Tulsi Tea Line ($5.99) have become one of my son’s favorites. He especially loves the peppermint variety, (there are several to choose from) and I like that it’s completely organic. These USDA organic teas are infused with a sacred Indian herb that’s packed with goodness + deliciousness in over 20 flavors. A cup of Tulsi tea warms up the soul – lowers stress, bolsters immunity, enhances stamina and promotes a healthy metabolism. He has some health issues, so I am all for anything that will give him any kind of a boost.  These teas are not only good tasting and good for you, as well as environmentally friendly- but they are good for the people who farm them. ORGANIC INDIA works directly with marginalized farmers in India providing healthcare, education, gender equality and empowerment programs. Sipping fireside, never tasted so good! 
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MANDUKA® COLLABORATES WITH RYAN MCGINNESS ON PRINTED PRO YOGA MAT @MandukaYoga

Mat to benefit Bent on Learning – bringing yoga to children in underserved communities

LOS ANGELES (December 1, 2015) – Manduka, creators of high-performance yoga gear designed for and by yogis, revealed its first-ever artist collaboration bringing Ryan McGinness’ renowned figure drawings to its legendary PRO Mat series. The limited edition mat will be sold online only at www.manduka.com. For every Ryan McGinness PRO Mat purchased, Manduka will gift two yoga classes for children in the nonprofit organization Bent on Learning, bringing yoga into underserved public schools to support a healthier, more compassionate learning environment.

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“Yoga and art are natural partners,” said Sky Meltzer, CEO Manduka. “We are honored to provide our mat as a canvas for Ryan McGinness’ work, bringing beautiful imagery to the place so many people go to for inspiration. Together, we are sharing mindful purpose and creative expression, while supporting kids and inspiring them to practice.”
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Lazy Lizards Yoga Products For Kids

As many of you know, I am a yoga fan.  I practice regularly, and have had my son and even my grandmother do yoga (at their level) with me.  My son is, like many kids, wiggly and impatient, and yoga is great for redirecting that energy.

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Lazy Lizards created a kid sized yoga mat with 12 poses printed on the mat along with a DVD to go along.  Kids can easily follow along with the DVD or just use their mat.  Their is also a space where kids can personalize their mat to make it their own- my son was completely horrified by the thought of drawing on his mat, but I think some kids would like to.  My boy can be a little finicky, like his mother.

They have 4 colors of  eco friendly, kid sized yoga mats, with poses printed directly on the mat, as well as the Lazy Lizards Yoga DVD.  Introducing yoga at a young age can encourage a healthy lifestyle early. Kids love doing yoga, and it is great for them. Yoga comes naturally to children, they love to use their imaginations to move their bodies in creative ways. Have your child try yoga, and watch him or her grow from the inside, out.  It is great for you to do together as well- something you both can do.  It’s nice to have healthy activities you both can enjoy.
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Gifts from Aurore Yoga

Disclosure- We received the below in order to facilitate this review.  All opinions are our own and honest.

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With the end of the year around the corner, its time to start thinking about living more healthy in the coming year. One of the best ways to do this is with an exercise program. Personally, we enjoy yoga workout programs which can be done either at home, at a gym, or some towns even have yoga workout days at the community center once a week or so.

Whatever your particular comfort level is, yoga is a fun way to exercise which is meant for every level of health and at every age (my son and grandmother both do yoga with me) and can be done by a broad category of people. The only necessity is a yoga mat- well, not a necessity, but it sure helps. There are quite a few accessories which could make your adventures in yoga much more fun.

Today we are looking at a few Aurore yoga products which are the perfect accompanies to that new yoga mat. Namely, the new soy meditation candles and yoga mat sak.
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MyYogaWorks Health and Fitness

“I participated in a campaign on behalf of Mom Central Consulting (#MC) for MyYogaWorks. I received a product sample to facilitate my review and a promotional item as a thank you for participating.”

Working out while away from home can be tough.  When dealing with nagging husbands, clingy kids and a yappy dog,(all of which can’t make their own breakfast?) where does the relaxing yoga come in?

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Well why not move it to the cloud and enjoy your yoga on the go.
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My New Favorite Sweater

Disclosure: The below was provided to me to help facilitate my review. All opinions are my own and honest. I am disclosing this in accordance to FTC Guidelines. Please see “Disclose” tab for more information.

As the weather turns cold, my thoughts drift to toasty things like soups and stews, warm baths, and fabulous sweaters. While I want to be warm, I do not want to be restricted by a big coat. This would be a problem if I didn’t have an alternative to a jacket that is comfortable, stylish and warm. The prAna Rhonda Duster Sweater is the ideal option for a woman that wants to stay warm, indoors or outdoors without adding the bulk of a jacket.
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The Sweater is made with multi color yarn that creates visual appeal via soft horizontal stripes. Blended with wool, this sweater provides the ideal amount of insulation to keep a body warm. As you know, wool is a highly sustainable source of fabric, offering the prAna Rhonda Duster Sweater the distinction of being an environmentally friendly option that will turn heads with envy, no matter where you go.

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Paddle Boarding in New Smyrna Beach

Tired of the crazy, frenzied, tourist rush? I love theme parks as much as the next gal (maybe more!) but sometimes, you just have to get away. My son, a friend, and I took a day trip out to New Smyrna Beach to paddle board at East Coast Paddle, and it was one of the highlights of our trip. Spending the day out in the quietude, in nature, and with only 5 people visible to me (including myself) was a welcome break from the crush of crowds you typically find at most attractions.

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About and hour and a half from Kissimmee, East Coast Paddle is an award winning-company, run by a husband and wife team. Proud parents themselves, they are excellent with children. Mine was smitten with wife, Cheryl, who toured about with him on her board the morning through. Cheryl, who has a doctorate in addition to her company and expert paddle boarder-status (and is a boat captain as well- yes, she makes us all look bad, LOL) also acted as tour guide in the river in New Smyrna for us, and was more then patient as we found our balance (or didn’t) and with my son, who kept dangling his feet in the water (which I am sure did not make steering easy for her!) Her husband, Tim, joined us in the beginning, and gave us our “lessons” on how to properly use the paddles and boards before we got on.

I think I annoyed him mildly, as I was only half paying attention (my son was asking a million questions, and also since he was on a boat and wandering, I was nervous- even though he was standing with Cheryl and I was an arm’s length away, LOL. What can I say, nervous mommy!) When we got on the boards, I found myself not having much of an issue finding my balance or keeping it. As a yoga lover for many years, I think that helped a lot, and did a fondness for kayaking. My son got right on Cheryl’s board, and stayed there, no problem. How she kept her balance with his wiggling is beyond me, though! My friend had a rougher start, but then he found his groove and we were on the way.
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