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Wellness Strategist & LifeStyle Mentor – let’s plan your next steps!

Turkey Bone Broth – More than “Just Soup!”

(Full “updated” recipe available for free download on our website landing page – download here: https://elizabethanthonygronert.com/)

Thanks to our wellness friends, our soup making skills have moved up a few notches in our home. Grateful for the experience and generosity of my friend Tiffany Hinton, GF Mom Certified. Tiffany has been a valuable health coach and resource for our family. She has introduced me to the world where “food is medicine”. Particularly grateful for learning about Dr. Terry Wahls. I found Dr. Wahls book easy to read and have applied her wisdom to the way we shop and cook for our family’s health.

As a result, it’s not just great soup! We make incredibly nourishing, healing bone broth soups. Bone broth soups help reduce inflammation – an important every day therapy! This tutorial is for our “after Thanksgiving” Turkey Bone Broth Soup. Being an artist – I enjoy instructions so much more if there is a visual to go along. Therefore, photos have been taken at each step of this cooking adventure.

Thanksgiving day we smoked a turkey, baked a turkey and grilled a turkey breast (with the bones of course!) In this photo you will see the start of our Turkey Bone Broth. Here are the three carcasses covered by filtered water.

1128160954 My husband, Kris, installed a grow light by our sliding glass doors. Therefore, we are able to continue to have herbs, greens and tomatoes growing indoors. From this garden, I have added freshly picked organic parsley, thyme, sage along with some chopped garlic, sea salt and organic pepper to the pot.

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Whenever possible, we invest in organic produce. If I see any starting to go soft, where it may not be enjoyed fresh anymore, I place in a freezer bag. In addition, I have collected stems, leaves and even the roots of some of the organic plants we had in our outdoor garden this summer before it got cold and froze them. I use these vegetables in the “cook down” of the carcasses. We add these vegetable right away to enhance the flavor of the remaining meat on the bones. Some may prefer to wait till after the meat is collected (after 2 hours of cooking) which does make the process easier. We feel the flavor and nutrition added to the meat, is worth the extra work later when collecting the meat.

1128161050Because we still have organic Brussel sprout plants outdoors, decided to add some greens. Snipped off the top and added the leaves and stems with some tiny Brussel Sprouts! (I love these fresh leaves cooked in ghee with garlic too!)

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Let everything cook for about two hours.

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At two hours the meat should be starting to fall off the bone. Time to use tongs to grab the carcasses, loose meat and bones to glean the usable meat. I have a plate to collect the cook down veggies, cartilage, skin and bones that will go back into the soup pot to continue cooking for an additional 8 hours.

Most people don’t realize how much meat they throw away with the carcass! Look at all the meat recovered from the turkey carcasses! Place the recovered usable meat (I do not like any fat or chewy meat in my soup!) in a container in the refrigerator to add to the completed soups tomorrow. All scraps, cartilage, bones and cook down veggies go back into the developing broth to cook down for another eight hours. I personally do not cook longer. The broth gets a unique smell after cooking twelve hours. So we stop around ten hours. We love the taste, smell and nutrition after 10 hours of cooking!

Finally, after the eight hours (ten hours total) of cooking has passed, we will prepare to get the wonderful bone broth. You may wish to let the hot pot cool for a bit. Place an empty large pot in the sink with a colander on top. Then pour the contents through the strainer – the remaining bones, meat and vegetable parts will be caught by the colander with the nutrient dense bone broth going through into the pot. Throw the bones and leftover meat and veggies away in a safe container that animals cannot get into. Poultry bones are very dangerous to pets and wild animals!

Refrigerate the pot of bone broth overnight. Most broths when refrigerated get a layer of heavy fat at the top  – it is especially thick with turkey bone broth. I remove most of this really goopy fat from the broth before continuing.

This turkey bone broth is ready to use for sauces, gravies, cooking vegetables, potatoes, rice or making soups. I made 2 different soups from this pot of broth plus a tray of cubes to use for cooking veggies, potatoes, etc. to boost nutrition! The first soup was a turkey white chili and the second was turkey vegetable! My family raved about both – they keep getting tastier and more nutritious every year!

My goal is to have at least a cup of bone broth soup every day! So nourishing and I can really feel the benefits! Let me know what you think of this tutorial….happy to share the soup recipes with you!

Let’s connect if we haven’t already! Send us an email at elizabeth@elizabethanthonygronert.com or call/text at (847) 502-8394. Elizabeth & Kris Gronert bringing you Comfort For Life!

Hidden Gluten, Allergens, Toxins & Carcinogens in Daily Living

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Where has the time disappeared to? Do you have the same problem? It has been a very full few months since I last wrote you. Some good news – new grandchild, visits with family, speaking at events and online. And some difficult times – loss of my father, continuing health challenges for myself & family members. During this time, we have been actively reaching out and helping people in their quest to be safe in their home. We have received powerful feedback that our Hidden Gluten, Allergens, Toxins & Carcinogens in Daily Living talk has empowered people and their families. The calls, text and emails keep coming for more opportunities to hear our talk. Watch our Event Calendar! There will be new dates consistently added where you and those you invite can attend a virtual presentation of Hidden Gluten, Allergens, Toxins & Carcinogens. Additional topics will be added as we serve others. While serving, we learn more of what we know or contacts we have that may bless you!

Have an event you need a speaker for? Our Talks can be customized  for your audience. Our current talk on Hidden Gluten, Allergens, etc. speaks to the Gluten & Allergy Free Community but can be modified for different groups. We have worked with those affected by cancer, auto-immune disease, autism, other behavioral and health issues. We have an eclectic background in coaching/mentoring small business owners, skin & personal care, personal image/brand, how to sleep more restoratively, and healthy lifestyle choices. We have worked with many other speakers that are advocates in the health and business world that you can trust.

If you found this information helpful, let us know! If you have any medical conditions, please consult your medical professional before following any of my suggestions here.

Questions, thoughts? You can call/text at (847) 502-8394, email at elizabeth@elizabethanthonygronert.com or find me on Facebook (Elizabeth Anthony Gronert). We look forward to helping you and your family have Comfort For Life! Elizabeth & Kris Gronert

Thank You Schaumburg GFAF Expo!

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Wow what a weekend! We want to thank the generosity of the Schaumburg GFAF Expo Vendors, the hard work of Jen Cafferty and Elizabeth Greifenkamp from Gluten Free Media Group (who created the GFAF Expos) and Otis Price from Willow Creek Community Church Care Center, South Barrington Campus. http://www.willowcreek.org/

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Lots of gluten free food was donated to the Willow Creek Care Center along with fresh fruits, vegetables and a wheelbarrow full of sweets – a display from Swerve!

Thank you to Kris Gronert, Tiffany & Will Hinton (gfmomcertified.com) for running around end of the expo to help Mr. Price glean all that was left for our friends this week at the Willow Creek Care Center. https://www.willowcreekcarecenter.org

Mr. Price shared with us that there is a waiting list for those with food allergies or are medically required to be gluten free. They were excited to contact the people who will be blessed by this donation.

Thanks again to everyone for working so hard after a long 3 day event to benefit people in our community!

Please contact us if you would like more information regarding the Care Center at Willow Creek Church, Willow Creek Community Church or learn more about being gluten free, allergen free, the Schaumburg GFAF Expo or any of the Gluten Free Allergy Free Expos.

Like this post, send us an email at elizabeth@elizabethanthonygronert.com or call/text at (847) 502-8394. Elizabeth & Kris Gronert bringing you Comfort For Life!

Glowing, Nourished Skin Even When Cold and Dry Out!

Want to have glowing, nourished skin even when it is cold and dry out? Here are some “winterizing” tips to prepare your skin:

  1. Use only safe, non-toxic, non-carcinogenic products on your body. Unfortunately, many retail products still contain hazardous ingredients because they are cost effective. An example would be quaternium-15 which is a formaldehyde releaser and reliable preservative. It is in many popular products (was in a famous line of Baby Products till 2015!) but is a known carcinogen! Check your product labels! Just because it is expensive or a “brand name” does not mean it is the best or safe.
  2. I know the air is colder but try not to raise the temperature of the water you use in the bath or shower. The hotter the water, the more it dries out your skin!20160110_105110
  3. Exfoliate and remove the dead skin flakes so any products you apply will make a difference. Otherwise, when you apply moisturizers they will hydrate the skin flakes that are about to fall off….and your living skin will miss out on being nourished! Use a fresh synthetic mitt or cloth in the shower with a moisturizing bath bar or body wash. I have 7 so I can use fresh each day and then place in the washer – just like you would a washcloth. They should not be used multiple times without a good wash. I recommend synthetic over a loofah or pumice because natural fibers cannot be cleaned effectively and definitely not disinfected. Natural fibers like a loofah are more likely to stay damp longer and grow microorganisms that are not good for anyone’s skin but especially bad if you are immunocompromised in any way. If you are not used to exfoliating (physical cloth rubbing skin to remove dead skin cells) you may want to start with an older, rough washcloth and then in a few weeks try using one of the synthetic washcloths. I used the exfoliating gloves when I was younger but find them a bit rough for my over-50 skin now. (Exfoliating cloth/mitt is the best treatment for those bumps many people get on the back of their upper arm combined with hydrating body wash, then apply protective lotion/cream/oil over the moist skin.)20160109_150612
  4. Another option for exfoliation are some of the wonderful salt, sugar and blend scrubs available. I prefer to use these products in the bath so the wonderful, healing ingredients can absorb nicely into the skin after your scrub. Really wonderful if you can find a kind soul to scrub your back too! Currently my two favorites are made by Seacret. The Dead Sea Salt is an excellent exfoliators with healing benefits. The Milk & Honey has essential oils that leave skin dewy after the salt polish. 20160104_090817
  5. The Renew product line is made by one of my favorite online stores. These products are daily miracle workers –  specifically formulated to nourish and help keep skin from drying out while bathing. Guys and gals love this product line because it outperforms doctor recommended Eucerin, absorbs well into the skin and has gentle, healing Melaleuca (tea tree) oil. No girly fragrance for the guys, gentle and safe for babies!
  6. Turn your bath into soothing skin therapy by adding a capful of hydrating, calming bath oil. Add some Epsom salts for a healthy body detox plus the added magnesium and sulfur!
  7. After your bath and shower, best to let yourself air dry and apply your lotion while your skin is still moist. Be sure to use a moisturizer with a protectant so you don’t lose all the moisture in your skin back into the air. During the really cold or dry months, add your favorite essential oils, almond oil or other oils to boost the healing and sealing power! Lots of evidence that a relaxing bath, helps one have a good night’s sleep – proper sleep helps the skin look and feel it’s best too!

Using these tips your skin will be polished and nourished – ready for the cold and dry season. With skin being your largest organ, consider using these tips year round to keep it healthy and protecting you at peak performance.

If you found this information helpful, let us know! If you have any medical conditions, please consult your medical professional before following any of my suggestions here.

Questions, thoughts? You can call/text at (847) 502-8394, email at elizabeth@elizabethanthonygronert.com or find me on Facebook (Elizabeth Anthony Gronert). We look forward to helping you and your family have Comfort For Life! Elizabeth & Kris Gronert

Cracked Heels Treatment that Works!

Are cracked, tender heels a problem for you or someone you love? Here are a few quick tips that successfully have helped others treat the cracked skin on heels. The cracked, dried skin took time to develop and it will take diligent discipline to nourish the heel skin back to supple health.

If the cracks on the heel are open or bleeding, priority must be to help them heal. If there is an infection or medical conditions like Diabetes, please consult your medical professional first regarding any broken skin on your feet! Be sure to avoid any allergens and gluten if you or the person you are caring for are sensitive!  Apply an antimicrobial (antibacterial & antifungal) healing ointment to the areas that are affected until healed. Sometimes, soaking the feet in a gentle, non-detergent bath with Epsom salts and bath oil will aid in healing the skin.  We have had excellent results with a product from one of our favorite stores called MelaGel – however, it contains wheat germ oil and is not gluten free. Using a pure Melaleuca essential oil also works well under lotion or ointment.  Melaleuca oil is a natural anti-inflammatory with antibacterial, antifungal qualities. It is also a natural antihistamine to reduce any swelling and redness. Apply the MelaGel or Melaleuca oil with a protecting lotion/cream/oil to the areas needing healing and cover with a white or undyed sock. Apply twice daily to speed healing.

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Once the open cracks have healed, we can now work to improve the skin tissue of the heel. Soak the feet in a tub with a soothing non-detergent bath oil – add essential oils  (Melaleuca, Lavender, Frankinsense are great ones to try!) and Epsom salts for added benefit. Once the skin has softened, follow the directions below the picture to gently exfoliate the heel using a pedicure paddle. Our favorite is Swedish Clover Föt File imported by Flowery.0 20150401_140848This paddle has a coarser side (raised nubs) and a smoothing side (horizontal lines). Depending on the thickness of the skin (as we mature the skin thins so be careful to stay on the thick bottom skin of the foot – usually has a yellowish tint.) Do not use this paddle on someone with diabetes or other medical condition without consulting your medical professional first!

For most people, you can start with the coarser side to gently rub the thick skin of the heel (some have this this thick skin on the ball of the foot and big toe) to thin this heavy pad – when it is very thick, it wants to crack. By reducing the thickness, the skin is able to be more pliable. Be sure to stay on the thick padded parts of the heel, ball of foot or big toe at all times. Focus on the areas that want to crack.

Never remove too much skin – the body creates this callous to protect the foot. Start by just a few swipes to soften, then finish by using the smoothing side of the paddle to bring the skin to an even appearance. Always use the smooth side to finish otherwise the body may work quickly to replace this unhealthy thick skin. We suggest keeping the paddle in the shower/bath and use 1-2 times a week for maintenance.

Rinse the feet. While skin is till moist apply ointment, MelaGel or Melaleuca oil to the spots that tend to crack. Then massage the whole foot with lotion/cream. Depending on the lotion/cream you use, an application of oil may be required as a prevent moisture loss. This will help the skin heal and regain its pliable, healthy state.

Application of the products after every bath and shower is suggested to retain the moisture in the skin to eliminate cracked heels forever.

If you found this helpful, please let us know. Just a reminder, if you have any medical condition – please consult them before trying any of our suggested treatments. In this article, we are sharing over three decades of success/experience as a cosmetologist/esthetician. Visit us on Facebook (Elizabeth Anthony Gronert), send us an email at elizabeth@elizabethanthonygronert.com or call/text at (847) 502-8394. Elizabeth & Kris Gronert bringing you Comfort For Life!

So what’s really in those every day products?

Talk about education – these last 3 years I have learned so much about what is in our everyday products and the possible repercussions. I was a single mom for twenty years and sometimes it was hard to afford what I thought were the “finest” baby products but did my best to care for my son. How disappointing to find out years later that the name brand baby products had contained quaternium 15…a preservative that is a formaldehyde releaser. This preservative does an excellent job preserving products for long periods of time which is important because large quantities of these types of personal care & cleaning products are manufactured and bottled – sometimes outside of the USA – then they sit in a warehouse for months, maybe years before they ever see a store shelf. Formaldehyde is a probable human carcinogen per the EPA. Unfortunately, many of us may have been regularly dosed with formaldehyde during our lifetime. First when we are young with the baby products, then continued since many brands of toothpaste, mouthwash, deodorant, body wash, body lotion, skin treatments, hair shampoo, hair gels, fragrance, laundry and cleaning products may contain formaldehyde as the preservative.

Are you dosing your baby and family with unknowns? Life is busy and for many this just doesn’t seem like a “too” important issue. And for some, it may never impact your life. Your health may always be “good” enough that you don’t realize how much better you might feel every day if you rid yourself of things that irritate or sensitize you. Many people I work with who have sensitivities, auto-immune disease, or allergies – they know that in addition to formaldehyde there are possible irritants, sensitizers and toxins in some of the products in the grocery store. They have learned to read labels and know what to avoid. Your skin is your largest organ and it is very effective at absorbing what is placed on it or is in the air around it.

It is disturbing when I meet with moms and they share that they know they should be concerned about what is in the products they bring into their home for their family but it just doesn’t worry them at the moment. So tragic when they contact me months or years later when a family member is diagnosed with allergies, skin issues, autoimmune disease or even cancer. Priorities change real quick then.

It’s even more challenging when I meet pregnant moms who are very careful about what they put in their mouths. But unreceptive to thinking about the everyday products they are using and the possible impact that these products just like food may be having on their unborn baby.

So please, think just for a moment – have you looked at the ingredient label on the products you use?  You do have options…and believe it or not, some of these options may not only bring you peace of mind, they may save you money and time.

If you found this helpful, please let us know. Send us an email at Liz@elizabethanthonygronert.com or call/text at (847) 502-8394. Elizabeth & Kris Gronert bringing you Comfort For Life!

Tips for a Gluten & Allergy Free Trade Show

Life has been a whirlwind of meeting new people, savoring time with friends, sharing valuable information and tools! Spent this last weekend in Atlanta with our friends, the Domanicos, while attending the Gluten Free Allergy Free Expo at the Cobb Galleria. I love these events – I always come away with lots of new knowledge plus contentment knowing I have served people by helping them connect with valuable and money-saving resources!

The next GFAF Expo will be in Schaumburg Illinois – my stomping grounds. Excited to “host” many VIP’s to the area that have become friends and associates over the last year since I started attending these events. Here’s my list of Tips for Successfully Attending a Gluten & Allergy Free Trade Show:

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  1. Wear layers of comfortable clothing. Temperatures can run the gamut – some places are hot outside and inside – so have layers that you can easily remove and stow in a tote. Even when it is cold outside, it can be brutally warm inside. I found this true when I was in Texas a few months ago. They are not used to cold or icy weather, so the heat in the hall was high to accommodate the locals but about boiled this Chicago, menopausal girl! Then half way through the show, the hall became cold since many complained about the heat and I had to go find a jacket…. The reverse can be true – brutal hot outside and a refrigerator in the hall inside… so be prepared by wearing layers.
  2. Comfy, supportive shoes ideally with a sock or liner to protect skin – an emphasis on supportive – you have only two feet to make it through your whole life. Take care of them with shoes that are not only comfortable but have support built in to preserve the integrity and health of your foot. Socks prevent blisters and uncomfortable chafing. I have learned that when I have to stand or walk for long periods it helps to have a second pair of shoes to change into. I know this sounds like a pain but when my feet hurt, I hurt all over!
  3. You need high protein snacks and a baggie of veggies/fruit. There are usually lots of carbs to taste at the gluten and allergy free expos so your body will be craving protein and natural fibers for balance;-) Bringing a water bottle you can refill is a good idea. Most of the trade shows I have attended have limited if any access to a snack bar or concessions.
  4. Be prepared to wait in lines – I encourage you to bring and use your strollers, wheel chair, walker or cane-seat.
  5. You will have the opportunity to purchase “deals” from some of the vendors and many give out samples, coupons, magazines, etc. Bring a couple reusable tote bags that you can pull out as you accumulate goodies. Some who have challenges carrying may want to bring a rolling bag or suitcase to stow things instead of lugging them around on your shoulder.
  6. If you are local and can carry a lot of things home, plan to be at the expo at the end of the last day and have bags to fill. Many vendors choose to give away display product rather than pack and ship back home.
  7. Attend the speakers’ presentations. You will learn so much from those who have traveled the path you are on – useful information for your journey or valuable information to share with someone you care about. Plus you get to know the speaker/author/blogger and will find the ones you want to sign up for their emails/online events or purchase their books.
  8. Be considerate of those with fragrance sensitivities. Many who attend have severe allergies and your favorite perfume or bath spray could ruin their whole day or week.
  9. Really VISIT each booth and talk to the people that are there. Many have a story to share that may help you along your path. Some booths are there just to “sell” or may have “hired” help with no knowledge of our industry….but if you take the time (and full advantage of your ticket price) to look each person you meet in the eye, most of the people that have traveled to this conference have a lot to offer you and you will be much richer for taking the time to find it…and have many more friends/resources to reach out to when you have questions or need help.
  10. Get on the email lists for the people and events that resonate with you. Most will have valuable resources that they continue to share throughout the year. Plus savings for the next time the conference returns to town.

If you found this helpful, please let me know. Send me an email to Liz@elizabethanthonygronert.com or call/text at (847) 502-8394. Elizabeth & Kris Gronert bringing you Comfort For Life!

Watch out for Cross Contamination….They said it was gluten free but it wasn’t!

I recently ate at three different restaurants that promoted they had gluten free fare. The first two had a big sign saying Gluten Free Pancakes. When I inquired if the gluten free pancakes were cooked on a dedicated grill (meaning there was a grill used exclusively for gluten free food and another for gluten foods), the answer both times was NO! My big concern is that they thought they were offering “safe” gluten free pancakes – both restaurants have had no training in what gluten free and what celiac safe meant. I shared with them that by grilling the pancakes on the same griddle as gluten food would cause someone who is celiac or gluten intolerant a HUGE problem. That they could make someone very ill if they were not well-educated (which all of us start in that place!) Both times I spoke with a manager/owner and they sort of shrugged it off. One even shared that they have gluten free patrons who bring in their own gluten free bread and the server toasts it for them in their “gluten-laden” toaster!

The third restaurant was enlightened. They offered gluten free options for bread, rolls and chips. They had a disclaimer on their menu that the server also was sure to review with me when I ordered gluten free. The menu and server told me that they offered these items but wanted me to know that they are assembled in a kitchen where gluten also coexists. Cross contamination was a possibility and they were very assertive to be sure I knew that.

I feel I have always been gluten intolerant and glad that I learned that being gluten free may reduce inflammation from my autoimmune disease called ankylosing spondylitis. I am not celiac – if there is a smidge of gluten on my meal, it will not destroy the villi in my gut -but that same speck could make a celiac sick for a couple weeks to a couple months.  For those not familiar – gluten is the sticky protein in wheat, rye, barley and spelt. If you would like a list of common ingredients to avoid, pop me an email or give me a call. My friend, Advocate & Author, Tiffany Hinton has a document I can share with you as well as she has almost a dozen cookbooks to help you stay gluten free yet make tasty meals the whole family will enjoy!

Another way people are accidentally “glutened” is products that say they are gluten free on the packaging…then on the back it says that this item was manufactured in a plant or on equipment that may have processed wheat, soy, peanuts, and other allergens. Anyone who is a celiac, gluten intolerant, gluten allergic will tell you they do not consider anything that may have accidentally been contaminated gluten free since the smallest amount of gluten will rock their world.

Make sure when you are looking for a place to eat or products to enjoy that there’s no chance the products/food may have been contaminated…..ask a few questions to keep yourself and the ones you love that are gluten free safe and comfortable!

If you found this helpful, please let me know. Send me an email to Liz@elizabethanthonygronert.com or call/text at (847) 502-8394. Elizabeth & Kris Gronert bringing you Comfort For Life!

Save Time and Money By Opening That Tube!

IMAG1738We all have pet peeves. Wasting time and money are probably at the top of my list. Many of us probably feel that we don’t have the time to open a tube…I mean how much product can be left when you have rolled and squeezed all that will come out? I was quite surprised the first time I cut off the crimped end of my hair conditioner. There was enough in the tube for 3 or more hair applications. I am from the professional beauty industry so I like the good stuff. 3 more hair treatments is worth the effort! If you like to save time and money – read on!

Every time I feel I have squeezed the last out of a tube, I don’t always have a moment to open the tube to save the rest. I have a bin at the bottom of my closet where I store it till the day when I have a few minutes to get chores done. The tube you see open in the picture is a skin care clay masque with the remnants of product clinging to the bottom and sides of the tube.

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The tools you need are simple.  A sharp scissor to cut off the crimped end of the tube. Then you need a container to store the products you retrieve. I use 1/4 to 1 ounce travel jars. For large tubes (and jars) I have a small rubber spatula to easily scrape out and use every last bit of goodness. This tube was a bit narrow and a kitchen butter knife worked better. It fit perfectly at the small top end where product accumulates.

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I had two tubes of my face masque to clean out and place in the jar. When done I had almost a full ounce of masque in the jar. The brand new tube contains 2.5 ounces….retrieving a 1/2 ounce per tube is a 5th of the price!! Now I may have been able to squeeze the tube a bit more but since I have started doing this…when I have to take extra time to manipulate a tube to get the contents out, it goes in the bin and I take out a new tube. I have found this procedure to not only prevent product waste but a time saver as well! Since I have a travel kit for the gym, this technique helps me keep everything ready to go.

To prevent contaminating product in jars, use a clean spatula, wood stick or Q-tip to take out what you need. I keep a small glass of spatulas in my medicine cabinet. After I use them, I quickly rinse and dry off, then place back in the jar.

Did you find this helpful? If so, share with the people you care about who like to save time and money. Any questions, please contact Elizabeth & Kris Gronert – we help people and families find Comfort For Life! You can call or text (847) 502-8394 or email Liz@elizabethanthonygronert.com

Crazy Busy Is The New Normal

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In the last few years, I have been noticing that most people have gone from busy to CRAZY BUSY. We are scheduled tightly from morning to night with an abundance of important activities. The busiest people seem to be parents, especially working moms. When working with families, I find that crazy busy is the new normal….that people are struggling to keep up….which is stressful. It also makes it tough to eat right, exercise and get enough sleep.

What to do? Well, I will admit to feeling overwhelmed on a regular basis – especially since my health has been a bit compromised since a car accident last year….here are some strategies that have calmed me and may work for you too! One thing my husband does is if he sees me doing something that may not be a top priority, he gently asks if that is really the most important thing on my list. At first it used to irk me but after a while, even when he is not around I can hear Kris’ voice in my head as I ask myself if I am working on the most urgent or have I become distracted…..follow the steps below to strategize and then stick to the plan;-)

First – Write it Down on a Calendar! Put the non-negotiables on your calendar and TIME BLOCK! This means mark out the required amount of time on the calendar. Helps us to be realistic about what we really can get done each day. For me this includes the times I want to work since I am self-employed. Next, add in the appointments/commitments for yourself and the family.  Some families create a family calendar so everybody knows where the others will be and/or if they are available. This can be done on a big calendar on a wall or on something like Google Calendar on everyone’s phone. I put my exercise on my calendar. To stay healthy or in my case keep working towards feeling better, exercise has become a non-negotiable. I also mark out times for meal prep, meals, quiet time and walking the dog!

Second – Prioritize – List what is most urgent each day – read Stephen Covey’s Book on 7 Habits of Highly Effective People. I know I am due a reread!! He has a great system on how to label each task so you know what order they need to be completed. I make myself do the projects that are the most difficult first – otherwise I will procrastinate. Many times I build a reward into getting certain things done I don’t enjoy…or maybe you need to reward yourself when you get to the gym 3 times a week. I reward myself with a manicure every other week – keeps me on track….and I don’t have to fuss with my nails – one less thing for me to do and it makes me happy. The reward has to be something you want in order for it to work!

Which brings us to – Third – what can you delegate or get help with? It was hard for my husband to understand that I would rather take another appointment than clean our house. Cleaning the house also exhausted me and generally I was doing it at warp speed before a meeting in our home that I needed to be energized and prepared for. After a few of those meetings where I was fatigued instead of jazzed for my team, I learned that it makes great sense to have help cleaning my home! I also have had help cooking meals, walking the dog, and shopping for about everything we purchase. I am a small business owner so I always look for another small business to shop or have services from. I employ small business people who are affordable and offer awesome customer service. Nothing like having items delivered to your door. Many people think these services will cost more from the local business person than the “Big Box” stores but in most cases, you will save money….and more important to most of us, SAVE TIME! Plus the bonus of supporting people in your network and neighborhood.

Buy From Mom & Pop Biz

I found this picture on Facebook and post it whenever I can to help remind everyone to shop with their family member, friend, neighbor before going to the mall. Now one more step before running out to “the store” – CALL ME! I have people that Kris and I Know, Like and TRUST who will serve you! Reliable, personable and affordable professionals who will help you shop, cook amazing meals plus can help/have expertise with dietary concerns, clean your home, do your hair/nails, massage therapists to relieve stress, plan special events, take pictures, help you with scrapbooks, fix your computer, teach you how to use your phone, coach you how to effectively exercise for lasting results, share how to sleep better; it is quite an extensive directory of services and products to help you fight the fact that crazy busy is the new normal. Please leverage our resources to simplify your life!

Call Elizabeth & Kris Gronert at (847) 502-8394, email at Liz@elizabethanthonygronert.com or message on Facebook. Let us share how to have more Comfort For Life!