Cal Water H2O Classroom Challenge

Living in Southern California has it’s perks. Great weather, beautiful scenery and an abundance of recreational activities. You can enjoy everything from coastal living, take a mountain hike to even enjoying the desert lifestyle…..all within just a few hours from each other. We are not limited but these drastic weather changes that come with land changes, has taken it’s toll on the state. We have farmlands that are depleted and the water table is no longer able to support what was a bountiful land. There is a reason why our crops suffer and no longer yield the harvest they use to.  You add the enormous amount of fires are state suffers from, which have left “fire scars” on our lands.  You have lack of vegetation that creates a danger to the surviving homes.  So, even getting rain becomes a hazard from mudslides and flooding.

Education is crucial at any age, however sharing knowledge and the importance of conserving doesn’t require an age number. There is no age limit to learning not to waste! Water is abundant when you look at our very blue hued plant, but clean water is a another story. Water that can be safely used is not so easy to access. The world has been impacted by this ongoing crisis but simple changes can aid the situation greatly. The North American Association for Environmental Education has partnered up with the California Water Service, creating an educational program advocating projects in a classroom that impact global to local changes, I was all for supporting such cause.

Teachers and students will be able to brainstorm and contribute a final plan. The plan can be addressing global issues or local community changes that can make a positive impact. Conservation is a key, but being able to educate can also yield the opportunity in addressing a community resource waste (i.e. overrunning of sprinklers by municipalities). Teachers and students will then submit a portfolio that will be judged by a panel of experts, which will provide the opportunity in winning the Cal Water H20 Classroom Water Challenge!

California Water Service     NAAEE Logo

Winners of the Cal Water H2O Classroom Challenge will receive:

  • Grand Prize-
    Class Celebration: Classroom tent-camping
    trip to the Santa Monica Mountains with
    NatureBridge
    Class Funding: $3,500 grant
    Extras: Cal Water prize packs for every student
  • Second Place Prize-
    Class Celebration: A Pizza Party
    Class Funding: $2,500 grant
    Extras: Cal Water prize packs for every student
  • Third Place Prize-
    Class Funding: $2,000 grant
    Extras: Cal Water prize packs for every student
  • Fourth Place Prize-
    Class Funding: $1,000 grant
    Extras: Cal Water prize packs for every student
    All Participant Prizes
    Student Recognition: An official certificate of
    participation for every student
    Teacher Recognition: A teacher certificate
    Teacher Gift: An AMEX gift card

Our local city has made changes by adding water drip systems and getting rid of water hungry plants like grass that use to suffer the heat waves.  Big decisions needed to be made and some became a local sore subject because old trees that suffered the impact of such temperature increases, needed to be removed.  Thinking green is not always easy and that means sometimes removing hazards like aging trees.  The root systems could no longer support ailing trees that were planted when water was abundant or when conservation was a choice.  We did the same when it came to reducing how much grass we have and have current plans to remove more, which will mean less sprinklers being needed.  Fountains have been turned into planters, more drought tolerant plants have been planted and we got rid of most our Italian Cypress trees (more than 23 of them) that are a fire hazard.  Our local Fire Department likes to refer to them trees as roman candles because this is how they light up, due to all the dead material they hold inside.  Hard decisions but we need to think not only about ourselves, but also the safety of our neighbors.  It’s no longer just about reducing the number of water gallons we use in California per household, but also making sure we have nothing that can feed a fire if one should arise.

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​​This is a sponsored post. My review is based on my experience with the product and/or brand, which may differ from yours.

 

Dr. Bronner’s: Organic Baby Unscented Pure-Castle Liquid Soap, Bar of Soap and Sanitizer #Review #DrBronner

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Going green or trying to simplify your beauty and hygiene routine is something we all should consider. Why? I never knew how many toxins and irritants were in beauty products until I experienced a negative reaction and unfortunately, it takes that for some us to take notice. I now adhere by the 80/20 ideology when it comes to my beauty routine. Eighty percent of products that are natural and nice to my skin and body, and twenty percent of the naughty stuff. So, my mascara and eyeliner fit in the latter category, but I have even cleaned up my nail polishes and face washes. My skin actually appreciates me being nicer to it!

I have used the Dr. Bronner’s soap collections before but not in this formulation. I was sent a nice array of products from Dr. Bronner’s:

I love the smell of clean and this means just the freshness, minus the chemical storm I use to create. The parcel from Dr. Bronner’s had a glorious scent that was clean and just in an instant made me feel relaxed and tranquil…..and I’m high strong! I blame the lavender for trying to subdue me in the middle of the afternoon, but I enjoyed every second of emptying out that box!

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Dr. Bronner’s 18-in-1 liquid soaps are hemp derived and I’m already on the hemp bandwagon when it comes to beauty products and solutions. I use a lip balm that saved my forever chapped lips and the miracle ingredient was simply hemp. The soaps are not only friendly to you but also the environment because they are 100% biodegradable. The Baby Unscented Pure-Castle soap is also Organic, Non-GMO certified and to add to the goodness list, Fair Trade Certified.

Ingredients (as listed on the website)-
Water, Organic Coconut Oil*, Potassium Hydroxide**, Organic Palm Kernel Oil*, Organic Olive Oil*, Organic Hemp Oil, Organic Jojoba Oil, Citric Acid, Tocopherol.  *CERTIFIED FAIR TRADE INGREDIENTS
** None remains after saponifying oils into soap & glycerin

Retail Price Point: $15.29 Special Price for the 32 ounce bottle on the website. $4.49 for for the 4 ounce bottle.  Via Amazon, the 32 ounce bottle is $16.89 and free shipping for Prime members.

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Verdict:
Everything is great on the outside but does the Baby Unscented Pure Castle liquid soap deliver? Yes!!!! A little goes a long way and the soap cleans but does not strip away your skin’s moisture. It actually enhances it because the product contains Olive oil and Coconut oil……two of my favorite oils that are inexpensive but packed with nutrients. The soap is unscented but we all still pick up a smell from such products and this just smells nice and clean. Think of how freshness and a clean spring morning smells and this little bottle captured it. I have caught myself giving in to a few extra sniffs when using it. The liquid soap also has many applications beyond a face and body wash. I have used the soap for:

  • Washing Fruit and Vegetables
  • Giving the Dog a bath and especially after her surgery where she has an incision on her belly
  • Washing bird baths and because it’s gentle and kind to the surrounding, don’t mistaken that for lack of cleaning power.
  • Washing down the feeders where the squirrels and raccoon come to dine.
  • To even treating my roses for aphids because there is no way I would spray 40 rose bushes if I did not trust the brand.

The uses are endless and I feel safe and comfortable using the soap, so that makes me a big fan of Dr. Bronner’s products. I saw the big bottle being sold at Costco and I definitely have already picked up two and you can easily find where you can purchase their wonderful products here.

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Now, for the Lavender Sanitizer. Thank you for making a sanitizer that does not dehydrate my skin or nails. I have been experiencing dryness in excess from over use and because I try not to apply lotion to my hands when I’m out shopping (don’t want dirt and grime to have a welcoming surface), my hands have gone a dusty white in color from the over dryness. Yeah, the dryness that makes even closing your hands hurt but after using only Dr. Bronner’s Lavender Sanitizer spray, all that is gone. I finally found a formula of sanitizer that is kind to me but unkind to germs!

Ingredients (as listed on the website)-
Organic Fair Trade Ethyl Alcohol (62%)*, Water, Organic Glycerin, Organic Lavender Oil *CERTIFIED FAIR TRADE INGREDIENTS

Retail Price Point: $4.99 for a 2 ounce spay bottle.

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Last but not least, the Dr. Bronner’s Pure-Castle Bar of Soap in Lavender scent. Let me just rename this my make-up brush cleaner. I simply shave a piece off and added it to a candle votive holder made of glass. The holder allows for easy cleaning of my brushes because I can make little circles while the soap foams and the cosmetic residue, and whatever else stuck on there, just washes off. I simply then rinse the brushes and allow them to air dry before storing. My brushes both natural and synthetic have perfect bristles that are now clean and soft. This bar will also yield many washes because it is large and the lavender scent is calming…..something a girl desires when applying make-up!

Ingredients (as listed on the website)- Organic Coconut Oil*, Organic Palm Oil*, Sodium Hydroxide**, Water, Organic Olive Oil*, Lavandin Extract, Organic Hemp Oil, Organic Jojoba Oil, Lavender Extract, Sea Salt, Citric Acid, Tocopherol *CERTIFIED FAIR TRADE INGREDIENTS
** None remains after saponifying oils into soap & glycerin.

Retail Price Point: $4.69 for a 5 ounce bar.

I highly recommend trying anything from the Dr. Bronner’s line of products because I am confident you will be satisfied as I am with their products.  I actually plan to try one product in each line due to how well the items I received performed.  The products may be simple in what makes them but not simple when it comes to cleaning!

Connect with Dr. Bronner and their line of products at:

 

I received the above product(s) free of charge from Dr. Bronner.  I am not obligated to provide a positive or favorable review, just my honest opinion.  My review is based on my experience with the product and/or brand, which may differ from yours.

 

 

 

Aria Starr Beauty: Super Retinol Advanced Anti-Aging Serum; 2.5% Retinol #Review #AriaStarrBeauty

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Read the fashion magazines to the beauty newsletters,, and everyone is always pushing a retinol product with a very huge price tag. Not all vitamin A products are created equal but that does not mean that retinol product is not going to cost an arm and a leg. One thing I learned, is that Vitamin A should not be as costly and it’s effectiveness will come from what the formulation yields. You then get into the source and potency of the product and that is where I come to see if the bottle has what it says it does. The skin does not lie! 🙂

Aria Starr Beauty is a young company, which originates in Corona, California and with only a few products currently on the market. They offer Argan oil, a Vitamin C serum and the Super Retinol serum they kindly sent me to try out. The company name’s is the same as the founder, and they provide their beauty aids currently only via the Amazon’s Marketplace and other sites. Getting noticed is hard in the beauty world, so I don’t always discount if a company has little social media traffic or even a limited selection. Everything starts somewhere and some start small but as long as you do it right, I prefer to know I can count on a brand for this product versus just having a large selection of beauty items that do not work…..we all have sort of been there at one time or another!

I’m always on a retinol product as it is, and currently the OTC brands are only allowed to distribute a maximum of 2.5% without a prescription. This also means you get a softer potency that is sometimes better because delicate areas like your eyes can’t tolerate higher doses. You would need a script for retinol, which contains Tretinoin and comes in both topical and even pill form (i.e. Accutane). I don’t feel I’m there yet when it comes to my skin’s needs both in appearance and let’s admit it, in cost. I stick to 2.5% retinol for now until the time the fine lines start fighting back harder.

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Aria Starr Super Retinol is labeled as a advanced anti-aging serum. You get a combination of main ingredients like Hyaluronic Acid, Vitamin E and Organic Aloe. I like that the product comes in a glass colored bottle to avoid oxidation caused by light, plus it’s a gorgeous cobalt blue in color. Aria Starr took one step further and opted for a pump action top versus the glass droppers you see with some products, so again protecting the potency of the retinol by limiting oxygen/air from diluting it’s contents. I also like pump tops because I think they are more sanitary. You don’t have to worry if you need to rest a dropper’s top on the counter and picking up whatever to not only affect your skin, but the contents of the product, and it’s future applications. I’m just not into spreading germs with my beauty routine!

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Ingredients (as listed on Amazon): Organic Herbal Infusion, Organic Aloe, Botanical Hyaluronic Acid, Witch Hazel, Pentylene Glycol, Phospholipids, Retinol, Polysorbate 20, Potassium Phosphate, Hydroxyethyl Cellulose, Carrageenan Gum, Organic Jojoba Oil, Triticum Vulgare, Vitamin E (Tocopheryl Acetate), Organic Green Tea, Wildcrafted Resina Propoli, Sodium Benzoate, Potassium Sorbate, Ethyl Hexyl Glycerin

Retail Price Point: $16.95 for a 2.0 fluid ounce bottle. The label has a printed on expiration date, which I like. It makes the consumer aware of manufacture date (11/17/2014) and expiration date (11/16/2016). Aria Starr’s products are manufactured in the USA and lot/batch numbers are also recorded on the label.  Covered by a 1-year Satisfaction Guarantee.

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Results:
As I stated I use retinol, so I am passed the “sensitive period” where peeling and/or redness may occur. Aria Starr’s serum is the same potency as the brand I was currently using, so I simply just jumped from one brand to another. I used the product for 3.5 weeks to see if the serum continued with my skin’s upkeep and if I saw any improvements or worse, any fine lines coming back. I used the product twice a day but in the A.M., I tend to go lighter with application and always follow-up with a SPF moisturizer. The serum does have retinol present, as my past achievements of ditching fine lines continued. I did not have any adverse reactions and this serum seems to leave a little more of a moisture barrier and this may be because of the additional beneficial properties added (i.e. vitamin oils and enriching oils).

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Verdict:
You can’t beat the price point for a product where 1 to 2 pumps is needed. I still have more than 1/2 left because I needed 1 pump at night and a 1/2 a pump in the day.  A little goes a long way with serums and especially retinol infused ones.  I did not see any diminished gains that I had previously achieved and the product does work well with my skin.  No break-outs, blemishes, or anything negative I could attribute to the serum.  The product also absorbs quickly and gave me zero issues when used under make-up.

 

Connect with Aria Starr on:

 

I received the above product(s) free of charge from Aria Starr Beauty.  I am not obligated to provide a positive or favorable review, just my honest opinion.  My review is based on my experience with the product and/or brand, which may differ from yours.

To Clarify Your Fashion, Wear Soul Journey Jewelry

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I got the opportunity to try out and review a few pieces from this wonderful company, Soul Journey Jewelry. Come along with me on this fantastic voyage, won’t you?

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The first piece I want to review is called “To Clarify Destiny Wear Labradorite”, and this is, in my opinion one of the most stunning pieces from Soul Journey Jewelry. It happens to be a favorite of Jill Boylan, their creator, as well. Jill had a previous jewelry line, Lapis Lois, but wanted to move on to something with a purpose. “Soul Journey Jewelry is a collection of stylish amulets with spiritual power…” So let’s have look see, shall we?

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Labradorite comes originally from Labrador, in North Eastern Canada, but is also found elsewhere. A type of feldspar, it is one of the more colorful of the volcanic rocks found in nature. Labradorite has it’s own type of iridescence, called labradorescence. From fully opaque to semi-clear, Labradorite comes in a rainbow of colors, but primarily pale greens and blues, as seen above.

Inuit peoples believed that labradorite was actually frozen pieces of the Aurora Borealis fallen to earth, imbued with power and granting the wearer insight and direction. Labradorite is thought to be a magical stone and has been used by mystics, shamans and holy people for centuries for healing, discovery, detoxification and inner abilities.

Handcrafted in California, USA of genuine polished, faceted labradorite, German nylon thread, and made to order, each piece is unique, no two will ever be alike. The one you buy will be yours and yours alone, and no one will ever have one exactly like it. Such is the beauty of natural stone and this jewelry’s handmade quality. Fully adjustable from 7″-9 1/2″, it will easily fit just about every wrist. This bracelet, from the glitter collection, is denoted by its rose-gold plated, jeweled pave bead at its center. A beautiful touch. It fits any style, and sensibility, and would look amazing on your wrist. Soul Journey is a company that we should all be supporting, a small business that dreams big.

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Connect with Soul Journey Jewelry and view their extensive selection at:

 
For a limited time, get 50% off on any purchase via their on-line store using Promo Code: sj50 

I received the above product free of charge from Soul Journey Jewelry.  I am not obligated to provide a positive or favorable review, just my honest opinion.  My review is based on my experience with the product and/or brand, which may differ from yours.

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