Create a Cozy Home with Essential Oils

We are gabbing about how to make a cozy home through smarter choices with Rhonda Flint of Young Living Essential Oils.

Chemicals vs. Oils

Do you know what you’re bringing into your home and how those chemicals are affecting your health, cognitive ability, and endocrine system? Most of us don’t even think about it. But many of the products you use at home are doing your family a disservice.

Recently, there’s been a movement toward plant-based science and the medicinal nature of our foods and herbs, and it all ties in to essential oils. Since the beginning of time, we’ve lived off the land. And essential oils are of the land. Whether we ingest them, use them topically, or diffuse them, we’re not putting anything foreign into our bodies. The body welcomes essential oils, which do an incredible job of boosting the immune system and helping to fight off free radicals. Truly, they are an incredible wellness tool.

What makes essential oils better than just using the native herb or plant? As Rhonda points out, herb must be dead and dried to be of use. Alternatively, essential oils are extracted from the plants in a steam distillation, while the plant is still alive. They are truly the essence of the plant. And that means the antioxidant level is much higher. It’s kind of like comparing canned green beans with fresh.

Essential oils are supplements. They can be used every day to help with the endocrine, upper-respiratory, and digestive systems.

Essential Oils for a Cozy Home

In addition to the health benefits associated with essential oils, they can help create a warm, cozy home. They can take the place of air fresheners, candles, and other canned scents. Just a drop of two of essential oils can be added to water in a diffuser, making it a cozy home and a healthy environment.

Plus, ailments disappear by getting rid of those artificial scents. That’s because we absorb all of the chemicals in them through our pores and by breathing them in. With essential oils, however, you continue to breathe clean air—while still enjoying lovely scents. And no chemicals.

Resources:

Rhonda Flint of Young Living Essential Oils.

Everyday Green Home

Read or listen to the full podcast below

Marla Cloos:                                                 This is Marla, the Green Home Coach, and I’m on the Green Gab Podcast today with Rhonda Flint. How are you today, Rhonda?

Rhonda Flint:                     Oh, I’m awesome. How are you doing?

Marla Cloos:                       I am awesome. I am loving this. I now have a studio to record in in Oklahoma City, so for all the listeners that have been following along for a while, we kind of transitioned from St. Louis to Oklahoma City, and I love the fact that I found a place to do this. It’s kind of fun. It’s kind of fun. So, being in Oklahoma City has opened my world up to a whole bunch of new people, which I find really exciting because I wasn’t sure exactly what I was going to find when I moved here. There’s always simpatico people, right?

Rhonda Flint:                     Yep.

Marla Cloos:                       Yep. So, tell us a little bit more about what you do and how you and I came to be in the same room.

Rhonda Flint:                     Well, I am a wellness advocate with Young Living Essential Oils, and I have been with them for a little over nine years now. It was actually a lady at church that introduced me to the company. It is a wellness company. She saw some pretty heavy needs that my family, my children had, and so I did a lot of research. I’ve kind of got that detailed personality, and did a lot of research on my own. I was not raised in a family that used a lot of holistic methods, so this was all new to me.

Marla Cloos:                       Yeah.

Rhonda Flint:                     So, a lot of research on my part, and started using the products, and I will have to say that it has been an incredible tool in our wellness belt, that has brought some amazing health and wellness to our entire family, and not just to us personally, to our bodies, but to our homes as well.

Marla Cloos:                       Yeah.

Rhonda Flint:                     I didn’t realize the things that I was bringing into my homes and how they were affecting our health, our cognitive ability, our endocrine system, everything. Things that you just don’t really even think about. So, it was very eye opening. So, here we are, nine years later, and once you have that knowledge, it’s very difficult not to want to share that with other people. So, one of my goals in life is to help raise that awareness in other people, to plant that seed for a need, and to see if there is something that I can help change in your lifestyle or that’s in your homes to help bring about a healthier home for you.

Marla Cloos:                       And I learned in space that you are an educator at heart. You are definitely a teacher at heart, and a servant teacher at that.

Rhonda Flint:                     Yes. Thank you.

Marla Cloos:                       I’m learning so much from you. I’m fairly well schooled on homes and what to bring into them, but there’s so many different solutions to that, that you can look a lot of ways. I find that reassuring because that way people can find what works for them, but what I find so exciting about Essential Oils is that they are really … just really moving forward. There’s a whole movement towards plant-based science, and the medicinal nature of our foods and our herbs, and it just all ties in with what you’re able to promote and to teach through Essential Oils, doesn’t it? Yeah.

Rhonda Flint:                     Absolutely. I think what I like best is this isn’t anything alternative. It’s not like it’s something new. There are hundreds of references, even in God’s work.

Marla Cloos:                       I was going to say, it’s in the bible.

Rhonda Flint:                     Yeah, yeah. So, it’s nothing new. You think, what did Laura Ingalls do? She didn’t run down to a department store. We lived off the land. So, this is … when we’re using Essential Oils, in any manner that we’re using them, whether we ingest them or use them topically or diffuse them, it’s nothing foreign to our body. So, it’s not like our body has to stop and think, what do I do with this? This is not something that should be infiltrated into our system. So, it does an incredible job of boosting our immune system and helping to fight off free radicals and so forth. Like I said, it’s been an incredible wellness tool for us.

Marla Cloos:                       So, a couple questions running through my mind at once. We’ll see if I can keep them in order. But one thing in particular that struck me, and I know a lot of folks have asked the same question I used to hear it about, is what makes Essential Oils better, different than just using the native herb or plant, and what’s that magic that happens, that makes the Essential Oils such a hot topic of conversation and such a helpful thing in our homes, in our lives?

Rhonda Flint:                     Right. I am a strong advocate of herbs as well, and they are incredible, but in order for you to actually get an herb, the plant has to be dead. So, the plant is dead, and then you dry it, and then you’ve got this herb, and it certainly has its place. It’s another tool for your wellness belt as well, but most of the Essential Oils are extracted from the plants in a steam distillation, while the plant is still alive, which means the antioxidant level, the constituent rate is a lot higher. It’s like comparing a can of green beans, which is dead, there’s zero nutritional value in that, to a fresh green bean, or even a frozen that would be a little bit below the fresh green bean. So, just more potent.

Marla Cloos:                       So, it captures the essence, hence Essential Oils.

Rhonda Flint:                     Hence the name.

Marla Cloos:                       Oh, I got it, I got it. Okay.

Rhonda Flint:                     Light bulb moment just happened, folks.

Marla Cloos:                       And I’m a user. Come on. That sounds weird. Hey, I’m an oil user.

Rhonda Flint:                     Yeah, I’m a user. We’re all users. Just admit it.

Marla Cloos:                       Okay. Yeah, we’re kind of blushing in here. But that is the thing that I think a lot of folks … it’s a pretty simple connect the dots, but we don’t always leap there, so thank you for that. Okay, so you mentioned that you got into all of this about nine years ago when you started converting your lifestyle.

Rhonda Flint:                     Right.

Marla Cloos:                       What prompted you to do that?

Rhonda Flint:                     Well, basically the decline of the health of my family. Even before we were with Young Living, we had started to purge our home, and started checking out the foods that we were eating, and realized that I wasn’t doing the best that I could with my family. So, we started ridding our pantry of boxed cans and frozen foods. So, we were already on that journey. So, when Essential Oils came into our life, it was just a natural progression. I’m like, oh, this is something that we need, this will just continue to advocate our health in an upward manner.

So, it wasn’t anything foreign to me. It wasn’t like this is odd. It wasn’t in the group of friends that I hung out with, so that’s the reason I had never heard of it before. I wish I had been introduced to it 20 years ago, when my children were babies, because they’re all older now: 20, 22, and 25. So, I wish that had been the case, but thankful that I have it now, and in the future when we have grandchildren, we’ll be able to have that. So, I raised my children as preteens and teenagers on the Essential Oils and the supplements and their products and so forth, but it only took us two weeks after using the products, using the diffuser, in my son’s room, and I will say now, fast forward, that we do not have … In addition to the food changes that we have made and living a healthier lifestyle, that my children don’t frequent the doctor’s office like they used to. That wellness bar … We just broke through that ceiling.

So, it was everything. So, this is just now part of our life. It’s so funny, I’ve had people say, “Well, how do you incorporate Essential Oils into your life?” To me, that’s such an odd question, because I have to actually stop and think about that.

Marla Cloos:                       What you’ve done.

Rhonda Flint:                     Because I eat, I sleep, drink, I use Essential Oils. It’s not something that I stop and think about. It is completely part of our lifestyle. It’s not like I have to stop and think, oh, make sure you use lavender today. We use the oils every day. I probably use six or seven in the bathroom before I ever leave. It’s my skin care, it’s my deodorant, it helps with your endocrine, your upper respiratory system, your digestive system. They’re supplements. The Essential Oils are supplements. So, it’s what we do every single day.

Marla Cloos:                       But it’s a little bit different supplement than the kind you’d go buy in the store.

Rhonda Flint:                     Exactly.

Marla Cloos:                       That’s what’s key.

Rhonda Flint:                     Yeah, it is.

Marla Cloos:                       Yep. We love not only talking about how people can live cleaner, greener, whatever you want to call it lives, better, I like better. A lot of that revolves around our homes. I know we both talk so much about how we’ve impacted our homes with the changes that we’ve made, and obviously you’ve made a huge amount of change in your home over the nine years. Besides the health and wellness, what’s been the the one big thing that you think has really changed or inspired you over that time?

Rhonda Flint:                     Okay, if I can be a rebel and say two …

Marla Cloos:                       Of course. For you, Rhonda, of course.

Rhonda Flint:                     Okay. So, the first thing is getting rid of the air fresheners and the candles … We had candles that weren’t so healthy. You do have healthier versions out there, and we didn’t have those. A lot of plug-ins. So, I’ve replaced all of those with diffusers, and so you just put a little bit of water, about half a cup of water, and your diffuser … Essential Oil of your choice. That has replaced those other three things that weren’t necessarily healthy for our home. It did not make it a cozy, healthy environment. So-

Marla Cloos:                       We think smell, yeah.

Rhonda Flint:                     Yeah. We all like that smell. We want to either smell pumpkins or the cinnamon or whatever, right? So, we do-

Marla Cloos:                       Some bake a pie.

Rhonda Flint:                     Yeah, yeah. Oh, are you baking? No, I just lit a candle. So, the diffuser has taken over that, and without naming specific ailments, we’ve had ailments after ailments. Even just headaches is one that literally had disappeared, because those are things, those three things that I mentioned, those are things that we used to do, spray, plug-in, burn every single day, because who wants a stinky home? This is just what you do.

Marla Cloos:                       If you can’t figure out how to get rid of it, then you cover it up.

Rhonda Flint:                     Right, right. Those products, unfortunately, with lots of research, discovered that they weren’t the best for our bodies, because our skin is porous, right? It’s our third kidney, so we’re breathing them in. That means that it’s affecting every single organ in our body. So, when we made that switch, we discovered what it was like to breathe clean air, and how good it felt. So, that was the number one massive change that we made. A second thing that I would say would be the dryer sheets, because those are typically …

Marla Cloos:                       Let’s hold that thought and come back right after break, because that’s a great one.

Rhonda Flint:                     Okay, yes.

Marla Cloos:                       Talk about cozy. There’s nothing more than the dryer. Hang on folks. We’ll be right back.

Marla Cloos:                       Okay. So, before break, and for those of you just joining us, we were talking about dryer sheets as one of the way people think cozy is with your warm, toasty clothes that come out of the dryer, and they smell, and they smell good hopefully, not bad. But dryer sheets, a lot of folks have figured out, not such a great idea. And I’m sorry dryer sheet manufacturers, it’s just I personally don’t want plastic all over my clothes, and the stuff that it carries with it. So, we’re not going to use dryer sheets. What are our alternatives?

Rhonda Flint:                     Well, very easy. If you have dryer balls, that’s what we use, but some people say, “I don’t have dryer balls,” so very, very easy, oh, washcloth. Just take a washcloth, but a couple drops of an Essential Oil on it, and stick it in your dryer. Now, I like dryer balls because that helps to reduce the drying time, and it will help get rid of some of the static that will be in the clothes. So, I no longer set the actual timer on my dryer to where I used to when I was doing a dryer sheet, because I can reduce it by about 10 minutes or so. So, I prefer that. Some of my favorite scents are lavender, and even winter green, citrus fresh. Not really picky about what goes on the balls. I just put two, three drops on …

Marla Cloos:                       It still smells good.

Rhonda Flint:                     Yeah, on each ball, smells amazing. I think the winter green or a mint scented oil is probably my favorite for the towels, but who wants to dry their body or to have clothes put on their skin that has been laced with vinyl acetate and vinyl alcohol? There’s so many harmful chemicals that are in the dryer sheets, and I don’t think any of us want those touching our skin.

Marla Cloos:                       I know that it’s easy for us not to pay attention, and sometimes we feel like what we don’t know won’t hurt us, but we’re finding very strong linkages between chemical disrupters in our products and our homes and our food and our environment that are tied to so many of the things that can go wrong with our bodies physically. So, if there’s easy alternatives, then why not?

Rhonda Flint:                     Very easy. So cost effective.

Marla Cloos:                       It’s just not a big deal. If you want dryer balls, folks, I can get you hooked up with great wool dryer balls from USA grown wool. Is that right? Is wool grown? I guess so.

Rhonda Flint:                     Raised, really.

Marla Cloos:                       I’m trying to get us back. I apologize, folks, if you were watching the Facebook Live, it disappeared. We got it put back up, and we’ll give it another shot. So, sorry about that. I don’t know what happened. Technology burped on us. Dryer balls is such an easy one and I love the fact that what you said is dryer balls also can cut down your drying time, so that kind of helps us to contribute on the energy side and not be contributing as much if you’re concerned about carbon emissions, so there’s a whole slew of other effects. I think one of the things that you and I … I know we’ve talked about before is there’s so many unintended consequences, that we just don’t think about, and folks, you’re not going to be able to do it all. Be okay with yourself. Please give yourself some grace. Do what you can. But pick the things that are most important to you.

So, for you guys, it was health and wellness, and that was how you started your journey. But I know you’re doing a lot of other things too that have really come from that journey, and just come from who you’ve met and the things you’ve learned and …

Rhonda Flint:                     I would say, to speak to what you just said, is do what you can and be satisfied with those steps, and creating that healthy environment and that cozy house that you want, it is baby steps. So, this did not … the changes that we’ve made in our home over the last nine years did not happen from yesterday to today. It literally took … I don’t want to say the entire nine years, but it was baby steps, and the first thing was replacing the things that we talked about earlier that did not create a healthy, warm environment with the candles and the plug-ins and so forth. So, then we used diffusers. It wasn’t until two years later that I accidentally discovered when my daughter broke out horribly only on one side of her face-

Marla Cloos:                       Oh, no.

Rhonda Flint:                     … that how toxic the dryer sheets were. I had just bought a new brand.

Marla Cloos:                       Oh.

Rhonda Flint:                     A wonderful scent, and I just washed the sheets, and she woke up … She looked like she had a mixture of poison ivy and a second degree burn only on one side of her face.

Marla Cloos:                       That’s funny, ’cause we both have daughter and laundry chemical things that were really a big part of our lives. Yeah, that was the first thing I shaped up, was our laundry routine.

Rhonda Flint:                     Yeah, and it was probably one of my first ones.

Marla Cloos:                       And of course our soap and shampoo and things, because my daughter had sensitivity to chemicals. Still does. I do now. I think I’ve gotten more sensitive as I’ve cleaned that up.

Rhonda Flint:                     Yeah, I think that happened.

Marla Cloos:                       Yeah.

Rhonda Flint:                     Yeah.

Marla Cloos:                       Yeah. I can walk into a room and tell you if there’s artificial fragrance. Facebook folks, I don’t know what’s going on, but we’re going to try again on a later segment, because it just keeps timing out on me, so we’re going to keep going with the podcast here, and apologize to our Facebook audience if you’re still hearing us. Now I forgot what I was saying. We were talking dryer balls, laundry. Oh my goodness. That’s okay. We’ll get back there. Cleaning it up, but when I started my journey, which I didn’t know about things like the Essential Oils when I started my journey, that wasn’t in my group, and now I wish I had, I would’ve learned a lot of things faster, but one of the things when I started trying to clean up my laundry routine, 12, 13 years ago, there weren’t a lot of choices like we have now.

Rhonda Flint:                     Now, there weren’t.

Marla Cloos:                       Now you can walk into any big box store and find decent options, if not good options. There’s tons of local people making their own products, so they may not be going through all the certifications, but typically if somebody’s local and homemade and you can see their ingredient list, you can be fairly self-assured or fairly assured that they’re pretty good. But if it’s closer to home, that’s cottage industry approach. That’s usually a good indicator as well, but there’s really good options out there, and if you’re a do it yourselfer, oh my gosh … And you guys have tons of do it yourself recipes for making your home cozy and clean and sweet smelling.

Rhonda Flint:                     Yes.

Marla Cloos:                       What’s your favorite?

Rhonda Flint:                     Yeah. Probably my favorite would be the … Let’s see, what should I call it? Outdoor annoyant free spray, because in the summer time, and especially when you’re around the water and in the evenings, you don’t want to be annoyed by the-

Marla Cloos:                       The little flying …

Rhonda Flint:                     Yeah.

Marla Cloos:                       … bombarders?

Rhonda Flint:                     I also don’t want to coat our skin with all of that harmful ingredients that’s in the pre made spray bottles that’s out there. So, if I’m going to do a DIY, it has to be easy, because I am not a big DIY person.

Marla Cloos:                       You and me both.

Rhonda Flint:                     I told people, some of my friends, I’m like, I would rather poke a needle in my eye than to be DIY, and it sounds crazy, but that’s just not me. So, it has to be very, very easy. So, for me, I have done this now for seven years, and we used to go, we have a camper and we used to go to Lake [Taxoma 00:27:13] quite often, and all we did was get a little glass spray bottle and fill it with water, a little bit of Epson salt, and I would put about 10 drops of purification, which is a blend that has melaleuca in it, T3, eucalyptus, [mirdle 00:27:30], et cetera, and then just a couple drops of peppermint oil. Shake that baby up and spray it on, not one critter.

Marla Cloos:                       That’s great.

Rhonda Flint:                     Would bother us. Super easy.

Marla Cloos:                       Believe it or not, I’ve use cat nip, cat nip spray for insect repellent.

Rhonda Flint:                     Yeah.

Marla Cloos:                       Who would’ve known?

Rhonda Flint:                     Who would’ve known.

Marla Cloos:                       The things you learn when you just start asking.

Rhonda Flint:                     Yep.

Marla Cloos:                       It’s crazy.

Rhonda Flint:                     Yeah.

Marla Cloos:                       Well, and of course, cleaning our homes is also a big part of the coziness. We like it clean, we want it to smell fresh and clean, and changing up our cleaning products is a pretty easy one.

Rhonda Flint:                     Yes.

Marla Cloos:                       I know there’s great opportunities with the company, Young Living, and I know there’s lots of good options. So, please people, pick one.

Rhonda Flint:                     Yes.

Marla Cloos:                       But you don’t need to be smelling chemicals all the time. There’s lots of great options. I know you’re a huge advocate of the cleaner y’all have.

Rhonda Flint:                     Yes. Well, I do think that Young Living has an incredible product, but like you said, there are a lot of really good green products. So, just research the ingredients. But Young Living has a cleaner called Thieves Cleaner, Thieves Household Cleaner.

Marla Cloos:                       Which smells yummy.

Rhonda Flint:                     It does. It smells great. So, it has a couple Essential Oils in it, lemon, I’m trying to think what’s in there. Lemon, and then for sure the Thieves Essential Oil. Thieves is a blend of eucalyptus, rosemary, lemon, and-

Marla Cloos:                       And yes, that’s the name of the oil, is Thieves.

Rhonda Flint:                     Thieves, yeah, and cinnamon bark. So, it does, it smells very refreshing and clean and invigorating, actually. I think what I like most about our cleaner is that you do not have to wear a facial mask or rubber gloves.

Marla Cloos:                       Or gloves.

Rhonda Flint:                     Yeah.

Marla Cloos:                       Yes.

Rhonda Flint:                     Because it is that green. It is green for the environment, safe to be flushing down the toilet, and by golly, give your children a spray bottle and they can clean, and you’ve got-

Marla Cloos:                       The kids help clean?

Rhonda Flint:                     Yes.

Marla Cloos:                       I love it.

Rhonda Flint:                     You have that security of knowing that they’re not being armed by breathing it in or touching it. It is very concentrated. It comes in a 14-oz bottle. You’re just going to dilute that one capful, you’re going to dilute into a 32-oz plastic spray bottle, so a little thing.

Marla Cloos:                       There you go. There’s my DIY.

Rhonda Flint:                     And that is it. Very easy, right? That one bottle, that one 14-oz bottle lasted me 10 months.

Marla Cloos:                       Wow.

Rhonda Flint:                     And it literally replaced every single-

Marla Cloos:                       What, you only cleaned once every three months?

Rhonda Flint:                     No. Every week.

Marla Cloos:                       I’m just joking, I’m just joking.

Rhonda Flint:                     Every single week. And it replaced every cleaner that was in my home. Again, I’m able to bring in the children. They should all be helping, right? No fear of anything harmful being breathed into our lungs or touching our skin at all. So, I’ve been using Thieves Cleaner on everything: windows, mirrors, glass, wood, floors, granite, everything.

Marla Cloos:                       So, here’s a thought, folks, is that … and you’ve just said it, Rhonda, we all have been trained by the people that sell all the products that we need a separate product for everything that we do, and we really don’t.

Rhonda Flint:                     No.

Marla Cloos:                       Yes, you do want to make sure that the product you’re using works correctly in an inconspicuous place first, but a lot of our products can be used, especially ones that are made to be a multi-purpose can be used in a lot of places. So …

Rhonda Flint:                     Yeah, it replaced seven different products I was using.

Marla Cloos:                       Wow.

Rhonda Flint:                     So, underneath my sinks, kind of empty.

Marla Cloos:                       There you go. You’ve got room for other things.

Rhonda Flint:                     Yes.

Marla Cloos:                       Well, hey, take a quick breather and we’ll be right back, folks.

Marla Cloos:                       So, as Rhonda and I are sitting here on our break, we just realized that we upended the order of the show, and we never got a chance to talk about how we met. Being only back in Oklahoma City two years now, it’s been a lot of fun to meet a lot of new folks and connect, and Rhonda’s definitely one of those. It was kind of funny how we met.

Rhonda Flint:                     You tell the story.

Marla Cloos:                       Well, I’ll tell part of it, and you have to pick up. So, we first met in a Lady’s Mastermind group, that I don’t even remember who introduced me to that group, and then you left within a few meetings. The group kind of rearranged on its purpose, and so you moved on to other things. And then a mutual friend of ours, a lady that I had met through the Women’s Business Center, I had gotten to know her, and we’d gone to lunch, and she said, “Oh my gosh, you have to meet this amazing lady, Rhonda.” I guess she said the same thing to you.

Rhonda Flint:                     Yeah, yeah. She said, “The two of you, you think alike. You’ve got to get together with her.” She gave me your name. I was like, huh, I don’t know very many Marlas. Sounds kind of familiar. So, I called and left you a message, and when you called back, I’m like, man, that voice sounds familiar. I think I know you.

Marla Cloos:                       That was when we figured it out. So, it’s been fun to reconnect even in a short time. Then we discovered we only lived like a few miles apart, and-

Rhonda Flint:                     Yes.

Marla Cloos:                       … now we’re hanging out doing podcasts. But we’ve enjoyed it, and I thank you for all you’ve taught me, bringing Essential Oils into more of my life, and while I’ve done a lot of things to clean up my home, the Essential Oils have just added a new dimension to it.

Rhonda Flint:                     You are welcome.

Marla Cloos:                       We really have enjoyed that, and looking into learning more. I don’t think I’ll ever be a tenth as knowledgeable as you, but that’s okay. I have you to call. Rhonda, what do I do for this?

Rhonda Flint:                     Oh, I’m learning every day myself.

Marla Cloos:                       Aye. But, getting cozy in the winter, because it’s getting colder now, it’s in …

Rhonda Flint:                     Yes, it is.

Marla Cloos:                       Oh, it’s not October. It’s November, when we’re recording this. I know a lot of folks starting to think about the holidays and it’s getting colder outside, and the things that you can do in your home, and we’re in our homes more in the winter time. So, we want to make sure that we’re keeping the environment as healthy as we can, because we don’t want to spread colds and flu and all that. So, how your home smells and how your home feels can make it just so much more pleasant, and that’s going to be an advocate of good health, right?

Rhonda Flint:                     Sure, absolutely.

Marla Cloos:                       Yeah. So, I always love having a fire in the fire place, or candles. We make sure that we’ve got candles that are made of natural bees wax or soy and scented with only Essential Oils or natural fragrances at all. That’s what we were going to talk about earlier, was fragrance.

Rhonda Flint:                     Yes.

Marla Cloos:                       So, here’s the deal, folks. That one little word on ingredients that says fragrance is really in and of itself an entire recipe of stuff that the manufacturers are not obligated to talk about what goes into their fragrance blends. It can be good stuff and it can be a lot of not so good stuff.

Rhonda Flint:                     You have no idea.

Marla Cloos:                       This is one I’m super sensitive to, a special treat for me is to wear perfume because I very rarely wear it, ’cause it’s got a lot of fragrance in it, obviously, being smelly stuff. So, that’s a special treat for me to do something like that, because I’m just not comfortable doing something like that on an everyday basis. I think that’s our point, right? Is that it’s okay to do something once in a while, as long as it’s not really, really bad. There are some things you probably want to not do, like walk across the street without looking. Sorry, I don’t know where that came from. But there are a lot of things that if you do once in a while, even though it may have some stuff in it that’s not as healthy for you, lay low, do a little bit. I kind of go for the 80/20 rule. If you can do it, the better you can do it for 80% of the time, then you’re making good strides.

Rhonda Flint:                     Right.

Marla Cloos:                       I think the big thing that we’ve both really embraced is changing that baseline, wouldn’t you say that?

Rhonda Flint:                     Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Marla Cloos:                       Just adding to it. So, what else can we do in our homes to be cozy and healthy and love winter and not be scared … Some people kind of just get scared of winter. “Oh my gosh, I get sick every winter.” We don’t, fortunately.

Rhonda Flint:                     No. Honestly, I can’t remember the last time we got sick in the winter time. It just doesn’t happen anymore. A huge part in that is the preventive. So, yes, so fire place, a healthy candle, and goodness, who doesn’t want a home cooked apple pie?

Marla Cloos:                       Or a big stew.

Rhonda Flint:                     Yeah.

Marla Cloos:                       Big veggie stew. That sounds good.

Rhonda Flint:                     A big pot of spaghetti. So, yes, Essential Oils, we cook with them. We have a line of vitality oils that you can ingest. So, one of my favorite things to do is I have a very healthy apple pie that I make.

Marla Cloos:                       Ooh, I need that recipe.

Rhonda Flint:                     And I’ll share it with you, and I make it with honey instead of all that laden sugar.

Marla Cloos:                       Raw honey, right?

Rhonda Flint:                     Actually, I only use a little bit more … Well, I use about a third of a cup, instead of some apples that I’ve seen, it’s like a cup and a half of raw sugar. So, we don’t do that.

Marla Cloos:                       Wow.

Rhonda Flint:                     I make my own crust, and then I’ll put a drop of Young Loving cinnamon vitality on the apple pie. Well, then all of the apple peelings that you get, I will put those in a saucepan with a little bit of water, turn them on medium, add a couple drops of either the Thieves Oil or the cinnamon bark, and then it just permeates the entire room of that smell. So, kind of a little cheat there before you throw out your apple peels or stick them in the compost, go ahead and boil them and let the air …

Marla Cloos:                       Smell like apple cider?

Rhonda Flint:                     Oh, yes.

Marla Cloos:                       Yum.

Rhonda Flint:                     Yes, apple cider.

Marla Cloos:                       That’s what I do every time we have a holiday gathering. I do hot apple cider, because it smells so good.

Rhonda Flint:                     I love tea. I’m a water drinker, in and out. That’s all I drink.

Marla Cloos:                       I’m with you on the tea.

Rhonda Flint:                     Yep, and I don’t drink cold tea, but hot tea in the winter time, even when there’s absolutely nothing wrong … I just feels good-

Marla Cloos:                       I agree.

Rhonda Flint:                     … to have it in your hands, that hot cup in your hand. Even if you’re not cold, there’s just something warming and comfortable about that.

Marla Cloos:                       Soothing.

Rhonda Flint:                     And peppermint tea is probably my favorite.

Marla Cloos:                       Yum.

Rhonda Flint:                     The Essential Oils are very potent. So, even with peppermint, you would not even do one drop of peppermint oil, the peppermint vitality in your cup of tea. So, I do the toothpick method. So, you boil your water like you’re normally going to make tea, and then you just take the toothpick and stick it in your Essential Oil bottle, and then just dip that into your water. So, you just get a slight residue of the peppermint, because it’s a very, very strong flavor.

Marla Cloos:                       I didn’t know it was that strong. I hadn’t tried it in tea yet, or in water.

Rhonda Flint:                     Yeah. So …

Marla Cloos:                       I’ve been warned.

Rhonda Flint:                     Cinnamon bark, same thing.

Marla Cloos:                       Yeah.

Rhonda Flint:                     I do this using the toothpick method. So, a nice cup of hot vitality Essential Oil tea while you’re sitting on the fireplace hearth.

Marla Cloos:                       There you go. I read one the other day that I really liked, that was just keep a basket of blankets around so people can be cozy. So, we’ll be of course washing our blankets in some kind of chemical-free laundry detergent and drying them with our dryer balls with a little bit of your favorite scent on them from your favorite Essential Oil. But you know, just those little touches, yes, you still need to do the big things, and you may want to upgrade your thermostat and put all that stuff, like a programmable thermostat, put that stuff out of your mind, but then just having nice homey touches, and there’s nothing to me more enticing than coming home to a clean and clean smelling home that I can just relax and enjoy the evening, and especially now that the evenings are getting much longer.

Rhonda Flint:                     They are.

Marla Cloos:                       You just want it to feel good and to smell good and to feel comforting, and I think that’s really what we all envision with cozy homes.

Rhonda Flint:                     Yeah. Something else that I have also done, instead of the candles, or maybe in addition to, when you want that ambience, is a Himalayan sea salt lamps.

Marla Cloos:                       Oh. I had one and I lost it in the move.

Rhonda Flint:                     I have two or three of them.

Marla Cloos:                       But those are nice, yeah.

Rhonda Flint:                     Around the house, yeah. We just keep them around, turn them on, keep them all the time. So, kind of like a little night light as well. Supposed to be beneficial for the air.

Marla Cloos:                       So, are you a mood lighting person?

Rhonda Flint:                     I am.

Marla Cloos:                       I am too. My husband always laughs at me, because I always turn the ceiling lights off because I want the lamps on with all my levels of lighting.

Rhonda Flint:                     I want that ambiance.

Marla Cloos:                       Yes. I’m actually bringing someone on the podcast to talk about lighting.

Rhonda Flint:                     Oh, okay.

Marla Cloos:                       So that’ll be a thing. You all will have to stay tuned for that one, ’cause we’ll talk all about how to light up your home.

Rhonda Flint:                     That’ll be good.

Marla Cloos:                       And add to it. The cool thing is, you’ve got so many options with things. Everything. I think sometimes that’s overwhelming to people. Don’t try to learn it all. Just find a few to compare and find a good resource to help guide you in that information, and then just go do it. You’re going to experiment and change. I can’t tell you the selection of cleaning products that I have, and they’re all better or good cleaning products, but I try so much stuff with what I do. But it’s given me a real opportunity to find some really good stuff. I’ll tell you the funnest thing I think I’ve realized, is that all those things that my grandmother taught me back when I was a kid are really what still holds true. It’s the simpler approaches that really take into account the simple ingredients and just the wholeheartedness of it, and I think that’s what’s so cool about Essential Oils, is it just puts that in a way that’s more convenient for us to use but still embodies that integrity of the wholeheartedness of the ingredients.

Rhonda Flint:                     Right, right.

Marla Cloos:                       So, here’s to you, grandmother.

Rhonda Flint:                     Yes. I agree. Simple is good.

Marla Cloos:                       Well, as we’re wrapping up, what’s your one favorite tip or last parting tip that you’d like to leave with our listeners? Then I want to make sure we tell everybody how to find you.

Rhonda Flint:                     Okay. Treat your body with grace and treat your body like your home, because your body is your home. I would just like to encourage everybody to research ingredients and take what you would like to do, if you’re going to make some changes, and we talked about baby steps already, maybe just take one room.

Marla Cloos:                       That’s a good idea.

Rhonda Flint:                     So, start with the kitchen. Open up the cupboard under the sink, and don’t take our word for it. Go research some of those ingredients. Be your own advocate, and be your own detective, and decide, okay, so, this week or this month, I’m going to find a better product.

Marla Cloos:                       And maybe it’s just replacing one product at a time.

Rhonda Flint:                     One thing. One thing at a time.

Marla Cloos:                       I do think you’ll find that when you start looking at it, you won’t need quite so much.

Rhonda Flint:                     Right. Then when you find that and you’ve realized that you have raised awareness in that area, then better yourself and your home, and move onto something else. You’re the gatekeeper of your home. So, you’re in charge of what comes in, what stays in, what you put in your body, what is in the air, what you eat, so be the best gatekeeper that you can be.

Marla Cloos:                       Yep. Well-spoken. So, how do our listeners connect with you? Do you want to leave contact information or …

Rhonda Flint:                     Sure. Facebook is my jam. I am not on a whole lot of other social media venues.

Marla Cloos:                       Nope, you’re not.

Rhonda Flint:                     So, Facebook is it, folks. So, you can find me just by my name. I do have my maiden name as my middle name, so you’ll find me as Rhonda Rickman Flint, and that is like Flint, Michigan, F-L-I-N-T. You can also feel free to email me at frugalrhonda, and Rhonda has an H in there, @gmail.com.

Marla Cloos:                       There you go. Well, I can’t thank you enough for sharing all you know with our Green Gab audience today, and appreciate all that you’ve taught me.

Rhonda Flint:                     Thank you. Been an honor to be there. Thank you so much.

Marla Cloos:                       Well, everybody out in Green Gab-land, have a wonderful, great, green day.

Rhonda Flint:                     Thank you.

– a Green Gab podcast with Marla and Tony

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