Does your life make you make lemonades?

I’ve always envisioned this blog to be a go-to for everyone needing some resource for some Self-Care. And though I’m still on the process of making that happen, what I’ve thought I would be having but turns out to be better than expected, I can’t help but think of the saying, “When life gives you lemons, make some lemonade.”

Which brings us to what this blog is all about. Lemons! You read that right?! I’ve never been a lemon gal growing up mainly because lemons is an imported good in the Philippines so we always use small limes instead. When we moved here in Singapore, my interest with lemons have also been born. With all the great benefits lemons give, it sure has been a staple at home not only for cooking purposes but for other things lemons does its magic!

In collaboration with Trees.com, let’s dive more into learning about the Meyer lemons. Meyer Lemons are very common here in Singapore and probably one of the staple food we have in our kitchen. Despite that, we usually don’t give much thought of where the goods we buy came from (or this could just be me🤪) as it’s a known fact already that Singapore imports 90% of their food. Nevertheless, isn’t it interesting to know more about where your food comes from and moreover learn where it really originated? That’s exactly what would be shared to you and to make this still in line with Self-Care, I’ll be sharing how lemons can be used in your daily Self-Care.

Meyer Lemons on groceries nowadays may be marked as a product from USA but do you know that it really originated from China? Ha! I know that nowadays, some may skip buying products from China due to the quality of how it has been made, produced, grown but I guess, in this case, China is in its DNA.haha.. In the early 20th century, Frank Meyer introduced the plant to the U.S. after discovering it during a research trip for the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

It got his interest as Meyer lemons are a hybrid between regular lemons and mandarin oranges. It can grow up to 10 feet tall and have an average lifespan of 50 years. From that time on, majority of the Meyer lemons in the U.S. are grown in California, Florida, and Texas.

In 1960, a virus nearly wiped out the Meyer trees in California. One stock was found to be virus-free, saved, and was used to develop the “improved Meyer lemons” we consume today.

What separates Meyer lemons from the others?

  1. It tastes so sweet that it’s used raw in salads and desserts.
  2. It is more complex than regular lemons that it has a bergamot-like scent.
  3. It has THIN SKIN thus makes it have a higher juice.

Now, you might be wondering why that “THIN SKIN” was highlighted and here’s the reason why:

  1. Due to its thin skin, it makes it difficult for it to transport.
  2. Due to this reasons, many supermarkets don’t carry Meyer lemons.

Not to worry though, why wait for supermarkets to sell them when you can have grow your own Meyer tree? With this new hobby most have adopted since the start of the Pandemic, yes, I’m talking about taking care of Plants, maybe, you’ll be interested to grow your own Meyer tree as well.

Know that there’s tons of other things lemons we can do, as part of Self-Care, aside from making lemonades(healthy drink to keep you hydrated and boost your immune system) and having a plant to take care of (cultivates mental health).

Health benefits: Rich in Vitamin C, support heart health, helps control weight, prevent kidney stones, protection against anaemia, reduces cancer risks, improves digestion and many more.

Household benefits: Cooking ingredient, great help in cleaning chrome fittings, freshens up the air, helps clean fruits and vegetables, stops fruits from browning, and kills weeds in the garden too! Check this link for more.

Self-Care benefits: Helps treat acne and blackheads, lighten dark spots and blemishes, gets rid of oily skin, calm down itchy scalp, and many more.

So there you have it! I hope this gave you a full blown realisation of how lemons are important and I hope you get to have a more deeper love for lemons as well. Trust me, it’s more than just making lemonades!

Are you loving this article? Try reading my other article on Easy habits you can start for a better Lifestyle. Remember, we shouldn’t overwhelm ourselves doing anything. Life is too short not to do things with joy and happiness.

Easy ways to Step up your Daily Habits

We all have heard of eating healthy, keeping hydrated, exercising, and getting enough sleep if you are gearing towards living a healthy lifestyle, or what we love saying, living with the right habits.

By all means, those are all great and if done, will help you tremendously. If, and only if, you would want to go a step further though, there’s still tons of ways you can add to that! Take note that like all the other habits, these doesn’t necessarily need you to do much nor spend tons of money. What it needs is you doing it on a daily basis to see some effect.

Here are some next level daily habit ideas you can add to your daily ones:

DRY SKIN BRUSHING  

Our skin is the largest organ in our body, sometimes referred to as the third kidney, therefore, it is vital for our skin to do detoxification as well. Skin brushing is one way to do it. I just checked on Shopee for less than SGD 10.

Here’s how to skin brush:

  • Skin brush with a dry brush before you shower or bathe.
  • Always brush towards your heart, with the flow of the lymphatic fluid.
  • Begin at the soles of your feet, then move up your legs, brushing in circular motions.
  • Brush your chest and shoulders towards your heart in long strokes, then start at the fingertips and brush towards your body. Use small, circular strokes in your armpits.
  • It is suggested you move in a circular motion counterclockwise on your stomach to respect the direction of digestion and encourage detoxification.
  • Follow with a shower or bath using an all-natural soap.

TONGUE SCRAPING

I’ve been personally doing this for the past 3 weeks and though I haven’t seen real evidence on how it had helped with my digestion and liver, I am always left in awe on how disgustingly dirty my tongue is every time I scrape it. I might confess that it has been slowly turning into an addiction actually scraping my tongue.

So what are the benefits of doing this, you might ask? Tongue scraping every morning allows you to remove bacteria that can lead to poor digestion and liver stagnation.

I suggest tongue scraping before brushing your teeth. We got ours from Shopee as we needed new toothbrushes. I was quite skeptical on getting one so this toothbrush with a tongue scraper at the other end was a great way to try it out.

Doing it isn’t as complicated as you think. Simply use Use a tongue scraper or even a spoon, if you don’t have one, and reach as far back as possible, and pull forward, scraping off the white film, which is what you call the candida and streptococcus mutans.

EPSOM SALT BATHS 

Salt bath has been one of the most used one from this list. There’s different salt baths sold nowadays as part of Self-Care kits. Soaking for 20 minutes in an Epsom salt bath is of the most wonderful way to detoxify the body and relax the soul.

Try making one yourself if you are not keen to buying one. I’m sure you can find almost all of the ingredients available in your kitchen.

Here’s an easy recipe to make one:

Use that while in a warm bath and enjoy a nice cup of tea afterwards…Ahhh..I’m feeling relaxed already just writing this.haha

REBOUNDING 

Okay, let’s not complicate this too much. It’s basically a trampoline. This has been proven to be effective for lymphatic drainage. It is suggested to do rebounding for 15 minutes per day. Who would have thought, right?!

Anyways, I’ve been living in Singapore for more than a decade already and it’s very clear that we can’t have those backyard trampoline we see the Westerners can have due to space constraints. Well, no excuses here! Decathlon have these Fitness Trampoline fit for a single person with a front bar (I think for safety purposes) for S$120 while a Cardio Fitness Trampoline (without front bar) costs S$ 50. Great options so there won’t be any excuses to do Self-Care!

SWEATING

Not sure if this should still be included on the list but let’s just add it anyway. Committing to do at least 15 minutes of exercise a day just breaking a sweat can make a big difference already. Sweat releases toxins from the body, and regular exercise helps get the blood moving. This is essential for our body to have a healthy metabolism.

There’s a lot of ways to do exercising without exerting much effort. You can try brisk walking, jogging, rebounding, or cycling. Try going into YouTube and you’ll find tons of videos you can follow to break a sweat.

Another method to work up a sweat is by going in a sauna, a steam room, or a hot bath. It is essential to make sure to hydrate after sweating.

OIL PULLING

I first heard of oil pulling when I had the opportunity to interview Hema Dadhwal, an Instagram Influencer and Holistic Lifestyle Guru in one of my episodes of Women’s Self-Care Series. This has been part of her Self-Care habits. Truly, oil pulling has been one of the common detoxification practice for centuries. Coconut oil are the most commonly used kind of oil in doing this. 

Here’s how to do oil pulling:

  • Put 1-2 tablespoons of oil in your mouth
  • Swish the oil for 5-20 minutes
  • Spit the oil in the trash can (to avoid it hardening and clogging up your sink)
  • Rinse your mouth with water and sea salt
  • Brush your teeth

Take Note: Oil pulling should be done on an empty stomach to ensure maximum benefits. The best times to do this are upon waking up or before going to bed. 

If you are doing both oil pulling and tongue scraping, it is suggest you start with the oil pulling first.

Are you loving this article or you think it’s a bit too complicated for you? Try reading my previous article on Easy habits you can start for a better Lifestyle. Remember, we shouldn’t overwhelm ourselves doing anything. Life is too short not to do things with joy and happiness.

Let me know in the comments which new daily habits are you looking most likely to add to your current ones!

Reasons why teaching kids not to whine is important

I recently watched this clip about #nowhiningwednesday where she made it into a challenge for herself (at first) and put into a jar a quarter every time she would whine, complain, or criticise. The results was so surprising cause she almost filled up half of the jar!

This got me excited!

As a mom with 2 virtually schooling kiddos, we don’t give money to our girls so just so it would be more fun for them, I put it into writing and made like a scoreboard. haha. These girls are truly competitive that they put so much effort to think before they act or talk. I tell you, our morning has been much much better that I’m so eager to buy some ice cream for snack later as a reward for ourselves.

On contrary, it’s not only the girls who’ve been showing some effort. I myself got some big realisations on how much I do whine as well. Well, not that vocal and showy like kiddos do when they have their tantrums of course, but with my thoughts?!!? oh gosh! Those silent, ugh!, huh!, and the list goes on.If you’re a parent, you know what I’m talking about.🤪

Have you tried this challenge already? I urge you to do so. If you’re an adult who just wants to do this alone, why not try doing it with the jar with loose coins! Not only would it help you realise how much whining/complaining you’ve been doing but you’ll also learn to be more mindful in the days to come. What’s more great about this is having that jar full of coins which you could either share(donate), save(for rainy days), or spend! Why not celebrate with some ice cream like us!

Here’s are more reasons why you should do this with your kids:

  1. You’ll learn to step back and try to look at the bigger picture before you act next time. This will help practice you to catch yourself on whining about things. You’ll get to be more mindful of your actions and find yourself doing the better option on doing things instead of simply whining about whatever that is.
  2. You’ll learn to look from within. Assess if there’s really an issue or something you need to address or its just a simple matter that just is a waste of time for you to think and whine about.
  3. You don’t need to be serious about this challenge. Nobody wants to do something that isn’t enjoyable. The key here is to be consistent on catching yourself from whining and hopefully in the process help you to lessen it. Not into collecting coins? How about the scoreboard like the girls and I are doing?
  4. As I’ve told you, this isn’t for you to feel being restrained from your but to make small changes daily. Knowing this, whining and complaining can’t really be instantly gone from your life. Knowing the right channel to do it while the habit is still within you is a great start. General rule, if it’s a private matter, don’t post it on social media.
  5. Finding the positive in every circumstance can be a great help in making this challenge a manageable one. There’s always a good part on everything despite not us always seeing it. That’s the catch! You need to find and see it!
  6. And last but not the least, practice gratitude. This is very very important. The more we realise how blessed and we are, the more we’ll find this challenge to be easier. Simply look around you and see how you’ve been praying for all those things to be in your life days/weeks/years ago yet, and here you are now! Why not enjoy it!

I hope you get to try this challenge and share your experience with me here in the comments or in my Instagram account @themommywithagoal where I share more positivity and Self-Care daily.

Know that you are enough, blessed, uniquely-made, and a great mom is important. Whining is simply a habit that we’ve all grown accustom to doing, that’s why we do it. Learn how to lessen self-doubt and increase confidence.

Learning more about how to be a Vegan

When it comes to transitioning your life for the better, you’d be surprised how an eye-opener it is as something as simple as a one word, “VEGAN” can have different meaning and specifications.

In my journey as an advocate for Self-Care in MommyWithAGoal, I’ve met a handful of great women who are vegan. Not a new thing right? While I might not be committing to being one anytime soon, it got me curious.

And guess what, there’s a whole Vegan world apparently! What’s amazing is that what my narrow mind knows about vegan such as someone who’ll only have salad all day, everyday, isn’t that at all. Just the thought of having salad every dinner makes me think twice already. Get me?! That’s how narrow-minded I was.

Let’s start with the misconception of vegan being the same as vegetarian. If this made you frown and read again what you just read just so you could understand clearly what I just said, then clearly, you’re at the same level as I am in knowing these things. haha! Not to worry though, we’ve got the internet to get more info.😆 To save you some research time, here’s the summary:

Vegans avoid consuming:

  • meat
  • poultry
  • fish and shellfish
  • eggs
  • dairy products
  • honey
  • insects
  • rennet, gelatin, and other types of animal protein
  • stock or fats that derive from animals

Vegetarians avoid consuming:

  • meat, such as beef, pork, and game
  • poultry, such as chicken, turkey, and duck
  • fish and shellfish
  • insects
  • rennet, gelatin, and other types of animal protein
  • stock or fats that derive from animal slaughter

However, do consume byproducts such as:

  • eggs
  • dairy products, such as milk, cheese, and yogurt
  • honey

Interesting right?? As simple as that, you’ve already gained more knowledge in a few seconds of reading! haha.. As this article focuses on being vegan, here’s what I found out on my research. There’s different kinds of Vegan! What I love about this is that realising that I can be a vegan too! Read along to know more if you can be too…

Kinds of Vegan

Dietary Vegan – No meat, dairy, or eggs; however, not focused on animal-free clothing or products

Ethical Vegan – No meat, diary, or eggs and avoids animal-based products like leather.

Green Vegan – Similar as an Ethical Vegan, but with a different reason: to reduce carbon footprint.

Raw Vegan – A strictly plant-based diet with food that hasn’t been cooked over 105-115F (40-14C).

Plant-based Vegan – No meat, diary, eggs, or processed foods.

VB6 – A strict vegan diet before 6pm, eats whatever they want (within moderation) after 6pm.

Paris Vegan – Eats vegan daily, but vegetarian when dining out or with friends/family.

Weekday/weekend vegan – Chooses specific days, such as weekdays or weekends, to avoid meat, dairy or eggs.

Virtually Vegan – No meat, and avoids dairy & eggs as much as possible.

Travel Vegan – Eats vegan diet daily, but experiments with local cuisine when traveling.

So there you have it! I hope this gives you a bit to think about your diet and how you consume food in general.

I’d like to end this article with a thought I just happened to have while writing this:

We consume food as it is a necessity, but what we forget to realise is the food our body needs isn’t based on the quantity for our body to function to its capacity but by the quality of food we intake. May this be an eye-opener for you, and me, to make wise food choices as we munch our way to living better and healthy.

Jeannine Paulsen Lirio-Javier, MommyWithAGoal

Learn more on how you can make wise food choices by not being fooled by “Healthy Disguised” food options you can find around.

Lastly, know that transitioning a lifestyle is a journey. It’s not like how Thanos does in the Marvel movie wherein in a snap, everything will change as you wish it would. It is important to enjoy the journey and have patience while doing it. Take it easy on yourself and until you reach your goal of being a Vegan.

It is also a big help you have a great support group which can guide and motivate you along the way.

A New Year, Are you ready for a New You??

I was quite hesitant to use this title because I don’t want to make misconceptions about this article, but why not??

Most of us associate New Year’s with hopes of being a new person. Not that we’re changing our faces or names but a new perspective in life. That’s what it should be actually as that’s how we should be doing each year.

But how do we change in just a day?? Well, it may not be as instant as what we are used to now a days but believe me, every little change you do in your life would matter if you just constantly do it everyday.

Reading a book per se is one way of doing it. This book I’ll recommend ain’t a new one. You might even heard it a lot of times already and even read it. If you had, then I hope you got the gist of it like I did and had your life transformed the way you want it. If not, then hang on for the ride! You’ll be reaching your own stars, just like how you’ve specifically wished for!

We are always told to as a child to dream. It’s the only thing everyone can do, no matter what circumstance in life we’re in now, that’s sky’s the limit! Cause why not, it’s your dream and all you’ll need is your imagination, mind, and yourself. It something personal where you don’t need to think of what others dream of, just yours. You don’t care how you’ll be able to reach them or what does it takes you to reach them.

Well, that’s how The Secret by Rhonda Byrne has influenced my life since 2008 when my then bf-now hubby gave me as a Christmas gift. I can still vaguely remember that scene where he send me off in the bus terminal as I made my way back home to the province to celebrate Christmas with my family. He gave me the book in a sealed small paper bag.

photo from Amazon

I’m not the kind of person who loves receiving gifts actually as I’m not a gift giver as well. haha. (I’m just a fair person) so when he gave his gift as a surprise, all I can give in return is a kiss and hug. haha! As the bus left the terminal and I was left alone, I hurriedly opened his gift. Not knowing to expect, I was actually surprised he gave me a book. haha.

First of all, he’s a self-confessed NOT-A-BOOK person. The only books he read are those school books required when he’s still studying. Second is the title of the book, The Secret. Daunting for me when I saw it first not knowing what it is about. I haven’t heard of this book before despite loving to read books (my dad’s book collection which are the ones I usually read are actually more of the 90s famous thriller ones John Grisham kind) So having this kind of Self-development book is such a new thing for me and thrilled to have it!

My 1.5 hr trip went so quick as I got too engrossed with the book. I actually almost missed my stop! haha.. As I finished the last few pages at home, I knew it would be our topic in messages as talk back and forth throughout the holidays while we spend our time with our own families.

As the New Year of 2009 came in, we knew that our lives would be turned around. Yes! You know that inner confidence you didn’t knew you had inside and the fears of uncertainty quietly slips under the bed, too shy to come out due to your overwhelming attraction of the universe that doesn’t want me/us to be stopped.

Truly enough, our lives was turned upside down that year as despite the world going through recession that time, we braved our way to finding new and better life adventures and career. That’s been almost 10 years ago and loaded with tons of mostly highs and some lows in life, we got married, had 2 beautiful daughters, and have quitted my 9-5 job to have more time taking care of our family. Despite the very high cost of living here in Singapore, I can say that we’re among the blessed ones to be living beyond what our dreams could imagine as a single income family.

As I learned the the twist and turns of managing wisely my time as a Stay-At-Home-Mom, I now devote my time to something I advocate the most, Self-Care. As a matter of fact, I just surpassed a dream of mind that I’ve been having for sometime, read more on my last article, on how I Shared A Christmas. Okay, too much storytelling and back to this book review.

This book had made waves when it came our in the early 2000’s. A Self-help book that’s been too much talked about that they even made it into a film/ short documentary. Find any coach or mentor that advocates on self-development and they’ll surely include this book on one of your must-read.

This book focuses on the Law of Attraction and helps you change the mindset most of us grew up believing in as that’s what the society feeds us. The title “The Secret” is so captivating that it makes anyone who sees it wonder what could be in it. As a human, we all got the urge to be more curious on things especially if it’s said as a secret, don’t we. That’s the catch!

This empowering book encourages everyone to visualise themselves reaching whatever their hearts desires. It gives you that boost of motivation you’ve never even though you’ve have in the first place which makes it amazing. You just go with the flow of life as the universe seems to always be at your side making you afloat nearer and nearer to your goals, one at a time.

What I love about this though is despite it encouraging you to reach your goals, it’s strategically done the “good way”. You know, not those easy money thing or those that lead you to the wrong direction of life just to attain material wealth.

The principle you attract through the learnings you get gravitates you to give back more to others, find gratitude in small and big wins that come your way, and mainly to focus your energy to a mindset that makes you think of the good things despite any hurdles that come your way. As they say, life can be full of bumps and it’s only the way you react on every bump that makes a difference.

With this kind of mindset, no matter what circumstance is thrown into your life, you’ll always find the good on it and eventually you’ll find yourself in a good place no matter what. And you know what happens when you’re in that good disposition in life?? You do good too! So there’s no way any minute of your life would go wasted on things you’ll spend your time now and regret afterwards.

With all the great things I have to say to this book, I must also mention one controversy this book had been hit the most. Yes, I’m talking about its religious beliefs. My take on that would be from a perspective of a person who lived in Singapore, one of the most multi-cultural countries in the world, for about a decade. There’s nothing respect on each other’s belief that can’t be settled and have peace on.

Singaporeans who’s composed of 3 major nationalities, Chinese, Indians, and Malay. All of them having different beliefs and totally different cultures. But hey, see how Singapore prospers? How do they show respect to each other? Well, simply giving way to each other’s needs. Let’s take holidays and festivities for example. We all celebrate and enjoy Chinese New Year, Eid al-Fitr, Diwali, and Christmas. How cool is that!

So that’s it! If you are looking for a great book to read and am thinking to turn your life for the better this 2022, I truly recommend The Secret by Rhonda Byrne.

A Happy New Year to all!!

This post is a part of Book Marathon 2022 by https://outsetbooks.com