Sunscreen – Help Needed!

I think most people by now have come across the article on 2015 sunscreens to avoid and what you should be using. (http://www.vancitybuzz.com/2015/06/neutrogena-sunscreen-toxic-avoid/)

I take sunscreen very seriously because of my Irish fair skin and family history.  In the past I only trusted Neutrogena particularly on my face.  I only use Neutogena face cleansing products on my face and have for years and years.  It’s Dermatologist recommended, right?

As you can imagine I was very disheartened to hear it may be toxic for my skin.  Whether that’s sunscreen only or all of their products, I decided to explore the suggested products according to the “Environmental Working Group” (EWG).  I don’t know who this group is and frankly sounds like a new category for the Westminster Dog Show but what the hey – they explored an important topic.

Reading through the list there are many brands on the “best” list that are familiar to me:  Bullfrog, Burt’s Bees, Earth’s Best, Jersey Shore Sun (GTL), and The Honest Company.  If you don’t know by now, The Honest Company was founded by Jessica Alba to make baby and home products available that are safe and healthy for all.  I’m sure there are many wonderful products people have tried but I can tell you the sunscreen is going in the garbage.

honest sunscreen lotion

One important feature of a product that is a must is that it’s not greasy/oily.  This was about as greasy as baby oil in the 70’s and totally skeeved me out.  I couldn’t get it off my face fast enough that I used Bath & Body Works antibacterial hand soap to wash it off.

So, I am asking for help on sunscreen recommendations.  If you know of any brands on the “best” list in the link listed above that not only is a good sunscreen, safe for the face, water-resistant and non-greasy, please let me know.  My skin thanks you…

 

Misfortune = A Lesson

LOST JOB 1

In the last few weeks I have come across some misfortune. Initially I was only sharing this information with close friends and family however I have learned so much in the last few weeks that I couldn’t help but share what I have learned.

In May, I lost my job and the grieving process started pretty quickly. The sadness and questions of why came first and then some anger started to creep in. Admittedly, I cried everyday for a week because I felt like a failure. I had always been a hard worker and have been working since I’m 14. I felt like I had lost my identity and I was incredibly embarrassed.

Eventually the sadness wore off and I realized one day that I was given an opportunity. I have more time to find something I really love or something that allows me to work to live and not live to work.

When life throws a curveball what is the best way to react? At first it may be sadness and anger but I’ve learned from many moments in life like this your actions truly show your character. The timing of my misfortune allowed me an opportunity to help others. By helping someone else, it has made me feel better about myself than I have in a long time.

It’s so important to help others in life and not expect anything in return. If you have that expectation you really aren’t helping anyone. Having that “if I scratch your back if you scratch mine” mentality is helping yourself, not others.

Sometimes blessings and opportunities don’t show themselves until time passes and like all things timing is everything.

Recognizing lessons in my journey helps me understand it all and if I can give others advice or help people feel less alone during these times then that makes me happy.

I’ll keep you posted as best I can with updates so stay tuned!

6 Months and 10 Pounds Later…

goal

It’s time to get back into the swing of things with eating healthy and being good to my body through activity. It has been a long cold winter that’s been a big setback especially since I am signed up for the Spring Lake 5 miler in 32 days. Eeek!

No worries though because a goal without a plan is just a wish and I have a plan! My plan is to keep those amazing Boston Marathoners from yesterday in my mind. There were survivors of the attacks that crossed the finish line, others in their 60’s – 80’s, and who can leave out “Rudy” Sean Astin?

How can I possibly say I can’t do a 5 miler when these amazing, inspiring and strong-minded individuals who have more reason than me to not finish, have completed a marathon?!

My other plan is to be prepared! This morning I put out my clothes for later today despite my dog’s unhappiness that he’ll lose me for an hour.

 running clothes

Wish me luck!

Change of Scenery

change of scenery

I have a friend at work who I confide in about my work and life challenges.  Every few weeks she tells me that I need a change of scenery.  It seems like a simple suggestion but then my brain goes into overdrive…

A change of scenery could mean two things: changing jobs or moving away.  The moving away part seems to cross my mind more often lately but that’s a major change that I don’t know I’m willing to make.  I have my family and friends in the tri-state area that I couldn’t live without.

Sure, I make friends everywhere I go, but moving states away?  Is a big move like that worth leaving those important people behind?  The thought of that brings on anxiety and fear but could it be worth it in the long run?

I need to hear from people who have made big changes like this.  Was it worth it?  Were you so terrified of that change but laughed at it later on?  Was it a huge mistake?  I need your help because this girl needs a change!

 

Spring Lake 5

Spring Lake 5

It’s Sunday morning and a few minutes past 5am.  I remember that Spring Lake 5 registration had just started so I jump on my computer to sign up.  How exciting would it be to have a low bib number?  Isn’t that all runner’s goal when registering or maybe it’s just me!

Registration was a breeze but yet I’m still awake.  I have to admit, it kind of feels like Christmas morning.  The memories of last year’s race floods my mind.  The experience was incredible: locals cheering us on at each step; banners waving in the crowds; running down streets that bring back childhood memories.  These thoughts make me feel happy!

spring lake 5 crowd spring lake 5 cheerleaders spring lake 5 finish line

What seems to be a little race registration task is helping me get my running motivation back.  Thank God!  The last few months I haven’t wanted to do anything which is out of the norm for me. People tell me it’s the weather but I think I’ve been in a funk!

I have a plan brewing of what I’m going to do to change this funk so stay tuned!  Now I’m off to plan on Spring Lake 5 outfit!!

Validation: Are We Better Without It?

validation quote

According to dictionary.com validation means to give approval or confirmation.  To me it means seeking approval from others around me which is super self-destructive not to mention completely exhausting!

Throughout my life I can pinpoint times when I wanted validation from family, friends, teachers, bosses and co-workers.  I was the kid who second guessed herself with EVERYTHING whether it be homework, play auditions, softball, basketball, tennis. I was the girlfriend who wanted to be cool and prove how smart, funny and easy-going I am.  I was the employee that went above and beyond to prove myself to superiors to get recognized while others passed me by.  I am a self-sabotager!

I have sabotaged myself in so many situations by second guessing if I was good enough.  I am here to say I am reformed!  Maybe not completely but it is a work in progress.

I have decided to stop putting energy into proving myself, second guessing myself and generally caring what others think.  As the quote says above: The only permission, the only validation, and the only opinion that matters in our quest for greatness is our own.  

As long as we do the right thing by being good people, isn’t that enough?  And if it’s not enough for a friendship, relationship or a job, it’s probably not going to have a future.

I’m curious to know other people’s thoughts on this topic.  Do you think it’s a girl thing?  Is it a Liz thing or do you feel the same?  Your feedback is welcome!

 

 

2015 Improvements

New Year 2015

I don’t know about you but I hate setting a New Year’s Resolution!  I have always felt that we don’t need the end of the year to reflect on the past and make changes in the future because it can be done everyday.  However, I will indulge you with my thoughts on how I want to improve in 2015….

Saying Yes

Saying yes to things outside of your comfort zone can be scary and rewarding.  I’m going to take more chances in hopes for larger rewards.

Saying No

Saying no to things you don’t want to do just makes you unhappy.  Don’t get me wrong, there are obligations we don’t want to do but they are the right thing.  I’m going to say no to things and be ok with my decision.

Taking Care of my Body

Being a healthier person is important for our overall happiness.  I’m not perfect and put on a couple of pounds this Holiday Season but as long I am conscious of what I need to feel good that is ok for me.

Slowing Down and Being More Thoughtful

A few times this year I have been faced with many work challenges and changes.  In an effort to prove that I can handle it all, I had compromised my responsiblity to be strategic.  This year I will be slowing down, thinking clearly about the down stream effects and best solutions.

Cooking More

I am a good cook and rarely do it because it’s easier to just pick up food for one!  I am going to make a bigger effort to cook new things at a reasonable price and in a healthy way.

So, in my last post of the year, I encourage you to look back on the last year.  Applaud yourself fo your accomplishments, recognize your failures, pick yourself up and move into the new year in a positive way.  Who knows, changing ourselves could yield bigger changes around us.

Happy New Year to you!