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Spring Wish List

Spring Wish List - Discovering GraceToday, I’m sharing a little spring wish list with a focus on two areas I’m trying to improve: skin care & style. One major task I have going on in my life right now is transitioning to non-toxic beauty and household cleaning products. I am doing a lot of research and trying to be budget-friendly, so the process is kind of arduous, but I am loving it! I have a tendency to want quick fixes, but I’m learning that slow & purposeful really does have so many benefits. 

Skin care

After reading this blog post from Ali over on Inspiralized.com, I was inspired to take the plunge and start swapping out my beauty and skin care products for non-toxic items. She encouraged her readers to download the Think Dirty app and check the toxicity levels of all their current products. Think Dirty is a product comparison app that rates toxicity from 0-10 (0 being least toxic, 10 being highly toxic). I was shocked to find several of my “natural” products were an 8 or 9! Once I evaluated the current state of things, I started determining the priority of items I needed to swap.

Style

I’ve also been simplifying my wardrobe lately and realizing my go-to styles and colors. This is helping me resist the urge to buy something unless it fits within the style guidelines I’ve created. I’m also researching ways to make more ethical purchases. This pushes me to save money and plan ahead to buy better quality items that will last longer. For years, I have bought cheap clothes and shoes that only last a season or two, at best. I want to simplify my wardrobe with quality purchases when I can.

The List

1. This book is at the top of my Amazon wish list & I plan to buy it later this week. I have heard many great things about it and I’m excited to learn more about natural skin care.

2. I have a love/hate relationship with Herbivore Botanicals. Such beautiful branding & packaging, but the price can be a bit overwhelming for the girl who usually spends less than $10 on products at Target! Like I said earlier, though, I am learning to value quality and I know these products are top of the line.

3. I have always been a fan of the Toms brand and I must say their sunglasses are so stylish! Bonus: For every purchase, Toms provides eye care for someone in need!

4. This book has been making waves recently and I can’t wait to dive in. My closet/style has needed some serious fine-tuning for years and I feel very inspired this season to work on it!

5. I just love a good leather sandle for spring & summer. These caught my eye & I’m using them as my warm weather shoe-muse!

I do hope as this non-toxic, ethical trend grows, we will see more affordable/accessible options that offer a great product without sacrificing quality. I would love to hear from you if you have recommendations for products or resources that can help with this transition!

Matcha Mule – A New Twist on a Classic Sip

Discovering Grace - Matcha MuleI’d like to start this post by sharing a fact about myself: I very rarely do/buy something simply because it’s trendy or popular. In fact, I often avoid trying things for that reason. However, I am also a firm believer that everyone should be confident in their likes/dislikes. Sometimes I like something that’s super trendy and that is okay. One trend I’ve noticed a lot lately and am totally on board with is matcha!

I was first introduced when I worked as a barista at Starbucks and have loved it ever since. In case you aren’t familiar, matcha is finely ground powder made from green tea. Matcha contains a very high concentration of antioxidants, boosts metabolism, and naturally detoxifies the body. Those are just a few of the many health benefits! As you might have guessed, the powder is a bright green color which I think adds fun to the experience!Discovering Grace - Matcha MuleWith St. Patrick’s Day right around the corner, I thought it might be fun to use matcha in a fun cocktail creation. This may seem counterintuitive to all those health benefits I mentioned, but I think adding it to a cocktail will balance everything out. I decided to do a twist on my favorite cocktail, the Moscow Mule.

I love how light + refreshing this drink is and the matcha adds just a hint of flavor and a bold color to celebrate the holiday. Bonus: this could easily make a delicious mocktail for those who don’t drink alcohol! I am Irish through and through, so I definitely plan to celebrate my heritage on St. Patty’s Day!  If you try this recipe, let me know what you think! 

Matcha Mule, serves 1

Ingredients
  • 1 – 1.5 oz. vodka
  • .5 oz. fresh-squeezed lime juice
  • 4 oz. ginger beer
  • 1 tsp. matcha (cold brew)
  • lime wheel and/or mint sprig for garnish

Discovering Grace - Matcha Mule

Instructions
  1. To make cold brew matcha add 1 tsp. matcha powder to 6 oz. cold water. Shake until matcha is dissolved.
  2. Pour lime juice into glass or copper mug.
  3. Add enough ice (I prefer crushed) to fill glass.
  4. Pour vodka and ginger beer over ice.
  5. Add matcha – I used 4 teaspoons of cold brew matcha to get the color I liked. Add more or less depending on preference.
  6. Stir gently.
  7. Add a lime wheel or sprig of mint for garnish.
  8. Enjoy!

Discovering Grace - Matcha Mule

Discovering Grace - Matcha Mule

DIY Bath Soak Valentine’s Gift

You guys, Valentine’s Day is fast-approaching and I have the perfect DIY gift for you and your friends! Since Valentine’s Day is on a Tuesday this year, it makes sense to skip the crowded restaurants and opt for an in-home spa experience instead. I can think of no better way to relax after a long day at work than a peaceful bath – glass of wine optional.

I’ve been on a mission for months to rid my house of chemical-laden products. However, the natural and chemical-free products can often be a bit more expensive. I decided I could make my own versions of some of my favorite products with just a few ingredients (most of which I already had on-hand). This bath soak is all-natural and an ideal gift for Valentine’s Day!

For the bath soak, I used:

  • 1 cup himalayan salt
  • 1 cup epsom salt
  • 10 drops ylang ylang essential oil
  • 10 drops wild orange essential oil
  • glass bottles (I got mine at Michaels)

Ylang Ylang essential oil is commonly used for its antidepressant properties which reduce anxiety and stress. Wild Orange essential oil is known for its pleasant smell and ability to uplift your mood. Himalayan salt has many health benefits, but one I find particularly helpful is the promotion of stable pH balance. Plus, it definitely doesn’t hurt that it’s pretty & pink! Lastly, epsom salt is always helpful in soothing sore muscles and other aches/pains. This combination is sure to provide you with a wonderful, stress-free evening. 

Instructions:

First, I combined both salts in a bowl and mixed together well. Then I added the essential oils and mixed in with the salts to disperse the oil. Lastly, I portioned out the perfect amount for each bottle which has enough contents for two baths, added my gift tag, and voila! So easy and so beautiful!


As with most things, I love how versatile this DIY is. You could combine any number of essential oils and herbs to create your perfect soak. I think lavender or eucalyptus would also make amazing options! Be sure to let me know in the comments if you give this DIY a try!