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Buddha’s Herbs Multi-Vitamin is a high quality, easy to swallow supplement.

5/5 Stars – We take this every day. Highly recommended!

Over the years I have gone back and forth with supplements.

They can be uber-expensive, difficult to swallow, and I always wonder about the quality. Should I buy drugstore brands? Do I need a high-potency supplement? Are all brands the same?

I also prefer to buy nutritional items made in the US, since so many of the products we import from China and other countries turn out to be tainted with lead and other contaminates.

Enter Buddha’s Herbs.

Made in the US? Check.

Organic and non-GMO? Check.

Affordably priced? Check.

High quality supplements? Check.

MultiVitaminI reviewed their One A Day Mega Omega a couple of months ago, and this time I tried the Buddha’s Herbs Complete Multi-vitamin for Adults. I received one bottle free for review.

The pills are smaller than most multi-vitamins I have taken, so are easier to swallow. Hubby and I take one each every morning, and feel like we are covering our basic nutritional needs without adding chemicals, preservatives, or GMO ingredients. Like all Buddha’s Herbs products, this is “manufactured at a NSF certified GMP facility and Independently tested at a FDA authorized Lab to ensure ingredient quantity, purity and proper dissolution.”

Cost? While the MSRP of $19.99 is more than fair, they are consistently on sale for $12.49, making these vitamins a big bargain.

Acoustibuds Sport Tips EPB work as well as the standard Acoustibuds – comfortable with great sound!

5/5 Stars – You Must Try Acoustibuds!

I was contacted by the PR folks at Acoustibuds recently asking if I would be willing to review the new Acoustibuds Sport Tips EPB, specifically made for the Ear Bud Pod as well as all forward facing ear buds.

I enthusiastically said YES!

Several years ago I had the privilege of trying the original acoustibuds, and I loved them. They increased the sound quality of my classic ear buds, while at the same time making them more comfortable with less slipping. I gave acoustibuds a great review on Blogcritics.

The new tips have a slightly different shape to accommodate the forward facing speakers, but otherwise were relevantly similar. Like the originals, the new Acoustibuds Sport Tips EPB come in several colors and sizes. The part that goes in the ear looks the same. It is the connection to the ear bud itself that changed to suit the new ear bud design.

Apple_EarPods

They are very comfortable and help the ear buds stay in your ear, with no slipping even during exercise. The Acoustibuds also improve the sound quality. This is really noticeable if you use the Acoustibuds for a few days and then try plain ear buds again.

At a MSRP of $14.99 for a set of two, Acoustibuds are a totally affordable way to increase the sound in your iPod and other ear buds. I was happy to get a set free to review, but would also happily pay $14.99 for these.

You must try these!

 

I received the Influenster Vitality Voxbox!

More awesome free stuff this month from Influenster

I have a confession.

One of the best perks for being somewhat well known in my little niche of pilates, reiki, and social media is free stuff. I am more than happy to attend fun events, try new products, and blog or share about them. And I love that brands are open and willing to work with me!

One of my most surprising finds has been a local Tribeca company, Influenster. I have had some of the best free stuff to try in their Voxboxes – full of full size products, not teeny samples.

Vitality Voxbox

This time around I qualified for the Vitality Voxbox. This box contained Bikini Ready Energy Gummies, a Softlips cube, a bottle of Pure Leaf iced tea, a box of Playtex Sport tampons, a tube of First Degree Advanced Burn Cream, and Elizabeth Arden Flawless Future Serum. The retail value was approximately $50.

The Pure Leaf tea was OK. Unsweetened organic iced tea that tasted great on a hot day.

According to my colleagues who use them, the Playtex Sport tampons are fabulous and leak-free.

I used the First Degree burn cream on a stove burn, and it settled things enough that there was no blister. I also decided to use it on a blister on my foot, and it helped it heal faster. Great product!

While I am often hesitant to try new face products, I do love the texture of the Flawless Future serum. It sinks right in, is not greasy at all, and my skin does seem a bit more luminous (I have genetically great skin, so it’s not always easy for me to see what a product does quickly).Bikini Ready Chews

The Softlips cube has become a favorite lip balm of mine. I bought a few after this one, and it tastes good and works well.

And then we have the Bikini Ready Energy Gummies. Much as I stay away from weight loss supplements, I decided to try these as they only contain caffeine (50mg in a serving of 5 gummies, about 1/2 a cup of strong coffee) and vitamin B12. And they work! The taste isn’t perfect, but it’s a supplement, not candy. I found good sustained energy that didn’t make me jittery and made working out a little bit easier. These I surprisingly recommend.

 

 

 

August Giveaway -

Win A Soma Water Filter System + 24 month Filter Subscription ($179 value)

Soma Water is a beautiful, natural, renewable glass carafe and coconut-husk water filter system.

Hubby and I drink a lot of water, and we have been investigating pitcher filter systems for years.

There are several things we don’t like about the Brita, Pur, and other systems we have looked at in the store. We prefer glass over a plastic pitcher, the filters are completely non-recyclable or renewable, the pitchers are small, and they are oddly shaped in terms of refrigerator space.

The Soma Carafe is glass, holds 6 cups of water, and is perfectly shaped width and height-wise to fit most refrigerators (they spent time measuring standard refrigerator shelves). The filters are completely renewable, and the water tastes significantly better than our already filtered NYC tap water.

We keep two in the fridge and they fit fine.

A filter lasts two months, and with the subscription they automatically send you one every two months for two years.

This month’s giveaway is one Soma Water carafe and a 24-month filter subscription ($179 value). Comment, tweet, like, and follow us below for your chance to win.

This will run for two weeks starting tomorrow – August 15-29, 2014 – with the winner announced by August 31, 2014. So enter now and share with your friends!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

My summer vacation is short but sweet.

Every summer since we moved back to New York has been quiet on the Pilates front. Seriously, my business is typically half or less of what it is during the rest of the year.

Not this year!

This year I have been steadily busy, never going under 15 hours. While great for my bank account (especially since I planned to be slow), it has meant less time off.

This year we have number of activities we both want and need to do. One is renewing our driver’s licenses in our home state of PA, so we can then exchange them for NY licenses. This requires taking our photo cards to PA.

We would also love to check out upstate New York, particularly the Adirondacks, where I spent very little time growing up. And we want to visit Governors Island one more time.

And we only have 5 days to accomplish all of this!

Here is the itinerary so far:

First morning we drive to the Poconos for a night on a lake in the mountains. While there, we pop over to PennDOT in Mount Pocono and get the license photos done.

We return to NYC, and take the ferry over to Governors Island the next day.

And then, we drive up to the Adirondacks that night for two nights in the mountains.

Which still gives us a solid afternoon to chill before going back to work.

Where to stay?

I was talking to a few friends and clients about where to stay, and some recommended Camp Chateaugay. Camp Chateaugay is located in the Adirondacks and has become an annual tradition for many families in the NY area.

For this trip, we don’t want family. We want adults only.

Have you been to the Adirondacks? Have a great, romantic hotel to share with me?

Let me know!

What connects Pilates, Germ Theory, and AC?

More than you would think!

My Dad was the typical New Yorker that Joseph Pilates envisioned as his client. He grew up in the close quarters of the city, breathing in everyone else’s bad germs. And he was there before AC became cheap and plentiful, so didn’t realize how filtered air might help ease his asthma and help him breathe like I know Pilates would have prescribed.

I grew up in Jackson Heights, Queens. Winters were cold and summers were really hot, especially the month of August. Every summer my father would trek down to the basement storage unit and carry up the window air conditioners, and I would be so happy.

See, he would wait until it was so hot that we could barely stand to sleep. Where the complaining just grew too loud, and then the ACs came up.

Interestingly enough, my dad (like Joseph Pilates) suffered from chronic asthma, and he would suffer through the heat instead of just installing the air conditioner and making the act of breathing a bit easier. Now hubby has asthma, and I have had asthma in my life, and I find that the AC really helps both filter and cool the air, making it so much easier to breathe at night.

I recently read that, “50% of illness is directly related to or aggravated by the air we breathe“. This does not surprise me, and wouldn’t have surprised Mr. Pilates. Of course, we now have more sophisticated understanding of what we breathe, so Germ Theory seems a bit silly and simple, but the idea that something other than sorcery caused illness was pretty “out there” for the times.

We now live near South Street Seaport, and between 9/11, hurricane Sandy a couple of years ago, the Brooklyn Bridge renovation, new construction, and demolition, there is a lot of 100-200 year old dirt, mold, and mildew floating around my neighborhood. And there are days when it is very hard to breathe.

Coming home to filtered, cooled air from my AC unit helps. Yes, the power bill may be a bit higher in the summer, but it is worth it to breathe a little easier – literally!

Depression Invasion

July 27, 2014 — 10 Comments

Depression invasion!

We had a wonderful day, went to sleep, and I woke up to a completely different husband.

It is only in the past few years that I truly understand that hubby has always been very very depressed. And depression sucks.

I thought it was me.

You see, in the past I used to blame myself. Since normal people do not just wake up in a hateful place for no reason, it had to be me, right?

I mean, I burnt the toast, didn’t I?

And I forgot to take the butter out.

I didn’t write down that ATM withdrawal and overdrew the account.

And my step-son freaked out and screamed for his mother all night.

So screaming, spitting, throwing, breaking, cursing, and then finally going to bed for a few days was an appropriate response, right?

My mother was bipolar, showing me both mania and deep, suicidal depression. I know not from appropriate responses.

And I would act out too, mind you. I screamed, broke things, cursed, and shook with anger. I often had a Bad Day.

I thought people were entitled to bad days.

About 10 years ago I started to work on myself. I kept journals, started a gratitude practice, and made a concerted effort to tell the truth always.

I dug for the positive, gave out lots of compliments, and started to forgive everyone, including my parents and myself.

I stopped holding grudges. I realized how much of my behavior was learned from my mother.

And I started to live a better life.

Suddenly I had more energy, now that I wasn’t spending so much on anger, resentment, and grudges.

Suddenly I had more money, now that I was giving and spending appropriately and not either hording it or throwing is away.

Suddenly I had more opportunities, as my light grew and attracted others.

And suddenly, my marriage was better, as I forgave hubby and myself, stopped holding on to anger, and started telling the truth.

Hubby was still depressed.

Yup.

Not as angry, not as confrontational, but still depressed.

And even after we moved to NYC, with stable income, and he has written and published two books to some critical acclaim, he is still depressed.

Yesterday he was fine.

Truly! We took the ferry over to Governor’s Island, explored Fort Jay and Castle William, had a picnic, got caught in a little rain, saw a huge hawk, and ordered sushi for dinner. A great day.

And he woke up this morning depressed.

Bad depressed. Like, “my life sucks and nothing matters and I hate my life” depressed. He is in bed as I type.

I feel like he has been invaded.

Today is a depression invasion!

How long will it last?

Who knows?

He will assure me that it is not my fault. And I know it isn’t.

But it still sucks.