What sparked my natural lifestyle?

Or as some call it, “crunchy” lifestyle.

If you know me personally, you know I’m very passionate about using non-toxic products and living a more “natural life”. I’m going to explain why.

About a year ago I realized that both of my dogs were constantly sick. I would have one of them to the vet at least once every six weeks. Lexi, my black lab mix, constantly battled allergies and last year it got to the point where she had a terrible, disgusting & painful ear infection as well as very itchy skin. The vet blamed it on outdoor allergies (which I found odd, considering that this was during the winter time before the big spring allergen surge). For 6 months I battled cleaning out her ears every night and giving her medicine to get rid of the build up in her ear but it never went away until I paid the vet to put her under and scrape the crap out of her ear.

Bentley, on the other hand, had such itchy skin that he was chewing at himself, including his paws, all the time. He would freak out and jump around the room he was so itchy. This went on for at least 8 months and the vet just told me to give him Benadryl. He was also diagnosed with hip dysplasia and locating patella. Both of which caused him serious joint pain.

In the cases of both my babies, I did exactly what the vet told me to with no changes. I have a great vet – he wasn’t the problem. It wasn’t until I started noticing both of my dogs no longer enjoyed their bowls of Beneful dog food, became very sluggish and were throwing up a little stomach acid here and there nearly every day that it wasn’t anything but the allergens, fillers, and (in my opinion) poison that is in most dog foods that was making my babies sick.

I threw the entire bag of Beneful away. Had them on a turkey, broccoli and rice diet for 4 days. Then switched their food to Blue Buffalo.

A year later – Lexi does not suffer from allergies, Bentley does not chew his skin raw, and his joint problems have become a million times better. He will always live with his joint problems, but if I can get away with not giving him pain killers every day, that is true testimony to how much a good diet can help a dog. Especially since he is only 2 years old. Every now and then after playing rough, he’ll start to limp. But it’s not the constant limp he used to have.

After starting my dogs on a natural diet, I realized – why am I eating and using all this toxic stuff when I don’t let my dogs consume anything but natural products? Then I started transitioning into eating clean myself.

Around the same time, I began learning about animal testing and decided I would not put my money toward the torturing of animals. This includes cleaning products, makeup, body care – anything. Generally, cruelty-free products are also more natural and most natural companies are cruelty-free so I started learning about and buying from these companies.

And, that’s it. My furbabies have really influenced me in so many aspects of my life. They have made, and continue to make, me into a much better person.

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19 Weeks Pregnant

Then… and now!
12weeks week19
(I obviously gave up on the chalkboard thing! 😉 Haha)
How far along? 19 weeks & 1 day
Total weight gain/measurements: At my 16 week appointment I was 136 (total of 2 pounds weight gain, right on track!) I’ve definitely gained some bump-age since then so I’m sure I’ll have an update at my 20 week appointment. I don’t have an at-home scale.
Maternity clothes: I have 2 pairs of maternity jeans, a pair of maternity dress pants for work and just placed an order through pink blush maternity for a few summer tops!
Stretch marks: I have a teeny one in the love-handle region. I have stretch marks from when I was in high school after losing that puberty weight (about 20lbs) on my thighs, so I already know I’m prone to stretch marks! I’m using Vaseline Cocoa Butter lotion but I’ve been told time and time again that lotions really don’t work anyway – it just has to do with your skin type. Important note: Vaseline is NOT cruelty-free – it was just a quick purchase from the drugstore to heal my dry skin considering that my options in this town are so very limited (to Walmart and CVS). I’m currently on the hunt for a good cruelty-free cocoa butter lotion that I can make a trip to the city for, or order online, any recommendations?!
vaseline
Sleep: Some nights are better than others. Our puppy decided to chew a nice hole into my maternity pillow so I’m without that until I can get it sewed up 😦 It’s just a little uncomfortable because I get dizzy if I don’t have really good head support when I lay down. And the maternity pillow REALLY helped with that.
Best moment this week: Hmm…I’d have to say making an afternoon trip to the city (about 4o minutes away) to get Popeyes (craving!) and go to Trader Joes for the first time.
Miss anything? Not gonna lie, sometimes I could go for a drink of Crown and sprite on the rocks!
Movement: One to three times a day I feel some nudges. It’s still a little early to feel baby move a lot!
Food cravings: I was craving oranges (specifically Cuties) from about week 10-week 16. I am always craving fruit, I think it’s because I’m always thirsty and fruit has a high water content. I sometimes have random cravings, like a big sandwich or most recently, Popeyes haha.
cuties
Anything making you queasy or sick? Nope! I never really felt nauseous or sick unless I was working the morning shift at the beginning of my 2nd trimester (7AM). About 30 minutes in I would get really light-headed and sick. Now, I feel kind of “off” if I’m working in the morning but the nausea is definitely gone.
Gender: To be determined 😉
Labour signs: Way too early for real labor, but I had some cramping earlier this week. I’m not sure if they were Braxton Hicks contractions but I’d cramp up really bad for 10ish seconds then it would go away for a minute or two before cramping again.
Symptoms:
Round ligament pain
Acid reflux
Shortness of breath
Some bouts of moodiness here and there, but not too bad. Just have a higher tendency to cry!
I ALWAYS have to pee
Belly button in or out? Still in!
Wedding rings on or off? On, I don’t have any swelling anywhere.
Happy or moody most of the time: Happy!
Looking forward to: Finding out the gender! And making those big purchases, like the crib and car seat!