Tejomaya Wellness

A Blog About Well-Being

Month: September 2016

Gratitude Review: September

rainbow-leaves     I love Fall, so I’m not about to pass up an opportunity to feel thankful for the cooler weather and changing leaves, but this month has been challenging. This was the month I lost my grandmother and the anniversary always comes with its share of bittersweetness, but I also learned Tuesday that one of my publishers for the magazine I write for had crossed over, as well. She and her partner and co-publisher gave me such a generous gift. Aside from making me a Contributing Editor of Health and Wellness, a title I wear with joy and with pride, they also gave me the opportunity to have my words read by so many and be a part of a beautiful community of kind, creative, wonderful people whom I get to call my Inner Child Magazine family. In that way, I do have so much to feel thankful for, and even though my heart is sad to have to say goodbye, I think we owe it to the people who show us love in this lifetime to be happy and grateful whenever possible. With that, I give you my September Gratitude Review…

This is not my car, of course, I'm just a little obsessed with old BMW 2002s at the moment.

This is not my car, of course, I’m just a little obsessed with old BMW 2002s at the moment.

For the second time in my driving life, I needed to call AAA. It sounds like a weird thing to be grateful for, but it was a positive experience from the moment I placed the phone call until the service driver left. I admit, when it comes to cars, I’m a little out of my depth, so it was a comfort to have kind, knowledgeable folks come to my assistance without losing a full day’s pay searching for a part in my price range and paying to tow my car to a mechanic.


Things at work changed in a BIG way. The changes have really lightened the mood in the office and the new energy in there has made it so much easier to go home and get back into a productive routine. I’m getting a lot more writing done, I’m working ahead on design projects through the end of the year and I’m working my way through my massive organization undertaking with a little more speed. There’s been another awesome side effect, but I’ll save that for my next little dose of gratitude, because it really deserves a mention of its own.

I bought my first set of watercolors!!!

I bought my first set of watercolors!!!

I started creating again, tenaciously. I’ve had some pretty great bursts of creativity here and there throughout the year, but after a friend reminded me to schedule time for creative pursuits, I’m no longer sitting around waiting for creativity to find me. Now I’m actively looking for inspiration and then doing something about it on a weekly basis. I’ve made jewelry, I’ve broken out the coloring books, and I’m watching watercolor tutorials and am dreaming up my next project. It’s not only changing the frequency with which I create, but it’s making the time I spend between projects so much more joyful and deliberate. Instead or just saving pins to a Pinterest board and muttering the word “someday”, I know what supplies I need to make it happen and what changes I want to make to the project to make it uniquely my own. As I’m doing this, I’m also finding notebooks with designs I’d sketched or notes I’d taken on projects I wanted to start and they are starting to take shape. It’s pretty exciting, considering how long some of them have been sitting there waiting for me. If you’re following Tejomaya Wellness on Instagram, I’ve started using the hashtag #CreativeFriday to keep myself accountable and to ditch the fear of putting my work out there. If we’re not following each other yet, you can find me here: https://www.instagram.com/tejomayawellness

How has September been treating you? Do you have any good news to share or any finished projects you want to show off? Leave a comment below so we can celebrate right along with you!

Wishing You Total Well-Being,



Tutorial: Easy Argan Oil Facial Serum

img_0223     When I ran out of the expensive argan oil facial serum I’d been using, I looked over the ingredients and felt a little foolish. It was literally only organic argan oil and essential oils. Why in the heck wasn’t I just making this myself? Once I’d picked out everything I needed to get started, I realized that not only was it waaaaay more cost effective (I was getting only 1 measly oz for the same price as the 4 oz organic bottle I get from Mountain Rose Herbs), but I was also able to control the essential oil blend that went into it and target it to my skin’s specific needs. Everything was coming up wins, so I made my order and waited as patiently as I could for my big bottle of goodness to get here.

If you’re not using argan oil for your skin or hair yet, allow me to sing its praises. It’s full of essential fatty acids (EFAs) and is also packing some serious Vitamin E. It absorbs easily, is lightweight and non-greasy, and is so moisturizing. 30’s skin, or at least my 30’s skin, can be pretty dang frustrating. I’m both oily and dry, breaking out and starting to see lines.  Argan oil keeps my hormonal acne at bay and since I started using it regularly, I’m seeing a softening of my crow’s feet and the fine lines on my forehead. It’s also helping keep my hair healthy and shiny. Each night, I smooth whatever I have left on my hands after my facial application through the ends of my hair and let it work its nourishing magic while I sleep. Seriously, when I’m consistent, I feel like I shimmer a little. It’s fabulous stuff!

Ready to make your own Easy Argan Oil Facial Serum? Here’s what you need to get started:

Easy Argan Oil Facial Serum

  • 2 oz dark glass bottle with dropper top
  • Funnel
  • 8 TBS argan oil
  • Essential oils of your choice


 I’m kicking myself a little for not doing this sooner. This could not have possibly been easier to make.  I think it took me two minutes total, which was just fantastic. All you need is to measure out your oil and fill the empty bottle with it. I used a funnel just to make sure I didn’t spill any, because argan oil is miracle stuff.  I even put what was left behind in the funnel and measuring spoon on my neck and face so I wouldn’t waste any. I’m not even a little ashamed.


After I got the argan in the bottle, I added my essential oils. Less is always more when it comes to aromatherapy recipes. Essential oils are already super potent, but you can totally ruin a blend or DIY project by being heavy handed, so start with one drop at a time until it smells right to your nose. If you’re going to blend, I’d also check out the potential combo with a dry run on a tissue or cotton ball first. Some oils just don’t play well together and if you’re wearing this on your face, you’ll want it to be pleasant. For my personally targeted serum, I chose patchouli and bergamot and used 4 drops of each. I selected this combination because they are both good for acne and oily skin and I love the scent of both. When I put it on after washing my face later that night, I couldn’t stop smelling my hands. It’s not knock-you-over patchouli, either. Just faintly herbal with a light hint of citrus.


Once that was done, I screwed the top back on, shook my serum and that was that. Easy peasy, serum squeezy. I used it last night after I washed my face and woke up to an absolutely glowing complexion. I’m hooked. I’ll only ever make my own serums from now on!

If you want to try this recipe, but your skin isn’t oily and acne prone like mine, or you just don’t dig the combination of patchouli and bergamot, here are a few suggestions that may work for your skin type:

  • Oily Skin – Geranium, Lemon, Orange, Cypress, Lime, Bergamot
  • Acne Prone Skin – Tea Tree, Patchouli, Geranium, Lavender, Clary Sage, Lemon
  • Dry Skin – Cedarwood, Rose, Geranium, Sandalwood, Myrrh, both varieties of Chamomile
  • Sensitive Skin – both varieties of Chamomile, Lavender, Geranium, Neroli

You’ll see a lot of crossover, where one oil is good for multiple skin types that seem a little contradictory, but in my nearly 20 years of experience with essential oils I’ve learned that plants have a special intelligence and know how to heal and balance when used in the right combination. That’s why one person can have success with Geranium as an acne remedy and another can use it to soothe sensitivity. It’s mostly a matter of letting your nose tell you what you need and using smart safety precautions along the way. Speaking of safety precautions, be especially careful if you are using citrus oils in anything that goes on exposed skin if you are going out into the sun. These oils are photosensitive, and can intensify the sun’s rays. It’s best to stick to an evening only application if you’re going to be using them in your facial serum.

I want to hear from you! If you make your own skincare serums or products, if you have a great blend of essential oils for skin or hair, or if you decide to try my DIY, tell us all about it in the comments below! I hope this tutorial adds value to your skincare routine and makes you feel absolutely gorgeous!


Wishing You Total Well-Being,


P.S. If you want to use the same great products I used to make my serum, here’s my affiliate link to shop the Mountain Rose Herbs website for your ingredients. I do get a small thank you from the company if you use it, but it helps me keep the blog going and order ingredients for the next Tejomaya Wellness tutorial.

Spice Up Your Life: Common Kitchen Staples to Help You Be Healthier

fall     Hey there, Well-Beings!  I wrote an article for this month’s issue of Inner Child Magazine that’s all about how to include delicious fall spices in your meals for better health and wanted to share it with you. As the weather cools off, I hope you can have some fun incorporating them into your recipes and that they find you feeling fantastic!

Wishing You Total Well-Being,



With autumn just around the corner, there are so many great cool weather foods to look forward to. This often means getting to use warming spices that add flavor and depth to our dishes. These spices aren’t just tasty; they may be beneficial to our health, too. Here are three worthy of experimenting with the next time you feel like being creative in the kitchen.


Turmeric – You know that elated feeling you get after a good meal at an Indian restaurant? There’s a pretty cool reason for it, and it’s caused by turmeric. Common in curry recipes, turmeric is rich in curcumin, which has been shown to be helpful for depression. It’s also a powerful anti-inflammatory, making it excellent for joint pain and arthritis. It’s also helpful for reducing redness and acne when used topically. It’s bright yellow color can cling to fabrics and surfaces though, so make sure you’re not wearing or washing with anything that you can’t bleach. If eating it or applying it to the skin isn’t for you, turmeric is a great addition to fresh juices, and it blends well with other fruits and vegetables so you can mask the flavor, but still reap the benefits.


Ginger – There’s a reason we drink ginger ale when we have the flu. It’s because ginger is a gem for fighting nausea. It does this by causing the muscles in the GI tract to relax. Not feeling queasy? Ginger, like turmeric, is a powerful anti-inflammatory. Take it for pain and muscle aches and feel better in no time. Ginger is great when brewed like tea. Add slices of lemon for a warming drink to calm indigestion soothe long inflammation or ease menstrual cramps.

cinnamon sticks

Cinnamon – This sweet spice isn’t just a common addition to sweet treats, it packs an antioxidant punch, too. That’s because it’s loaded with polyphenols, which makes it better than garlic and oregano for fighting free radicals. It also may help with weight loss and insulin sensitivity. Studies show that helping to regulate spikes in blood sugar; cinnamon could keep some sugars from being stored as fat. Sprinkle it on sweet potatoes, oatmeal or add it to warm beverages for a boost. Just make sure you’re looking for Ceylon cinnamon, or true cinnamon, for the best benefit.


With anything, it makes good sense to practice precautions when changing your diet. Adding too much of anything to a dish is a surefire way to ruin it, and the same holds true when using spices as supplements. Less is almost always more. It’s also smart to talk to your doctor about possible interaction with anything you may already be taking. Once you’re in the clear, open your kitchen cabinets and get creative. Variety is the spice of life, after all!

To-Do or Not To-Do: Sometimes There is No Question

image     I’ve been beating myself up a little this week because I had no idea what I was going to post about today. I usually plan my topics ahead of time so I can gather my thoughts and let my writing take shape, but for whatever reason I didn’t have a plan and even using my best and always trusty tip for writer’s block, nothing transpired. Nada. Giant question mark. There was a literal sound of crickets chirping last night as I set out to work.

I poured over all of the reasons I just wasn’t feeling it this week. One of my personal heroes since childhood died and my heart is still pretty tender.  My creativity shifted to another project that I’m so into at the moment, that it’s hard to tear myself away from it. The weather is fantastic and I wanted to hike with my boyfriend instead of being inside typing half paragraphs and deleting them all afternoon.  I continued to try to talk myself into writing by passing them off as excuses, but and here’s the lesson, they weren’t excuses. Not a single one. Each reason I gave for not following the plan, for not keeping my schedule, for not maintaining business as usual, were each entirely valid reasons to let myself take a break. Furthermore, the longer I felt guilty for not meeting my own deadline, the more ill conceived my topics became. So, I quit. And then the face-palm, moment of clarity came.

Self-care isn’t always so neatly defined. Taking your vitamins, getting good exercise, or fixing yourself a healthy meal are all acts of TLC you should show yourself often, but purposely skipping a publishing due date so I could have a good cry over Gene Wilder’s passing? Continuing to work on my creative projects even though they feel like I was goofing off? Putting on my shoes and walking away from the computer in favor of better company amongst the trees and wooded wildlife? Yeah, yep and yes. All acts of self-care, too. And guess what? In recognizing that and in relieving myself of the pressure to produce a piece that just wasn’t taking form, I ended up with something to say after all. Funny how that happens, isn’t it?

Will I legitimately procrastinate? Oh, Honey. You bet I will! You will too, but will there also be times when the best thing to do for your heart, soul, and sanity is to spend the day making art, or having picnic feasts, or creating memories instead of checking tasks off of your to-do list. After all, life is for living, isn’t it? Not for to-doing.

Wishing You Total Well-Being,





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