On the Ayurveda train and not getting off

Last week (or was it the week prior? Hmmm…anyway, doesn’t matter.), I walked to my local Indian grocer (for those in one of the five boroughs, simply take the train and get off at 23rd and walk up Lexington. There are tons of places.) and purchased a bunch of powders/oils that I’ve been reading about on the natural hair blogs. Unfortunately, I also picked up a box of Jamilla Henna only to learn later that most grocers can’t identify the source of the Henna. After reading stories about how a bad batch can destroy the hair, I became even more apprehensive about going down this road. A little more research showed that the other powders were fine to use.

Last night I Pre-Pooed overnight with Vatika oil and today I washed (Neem, Shikakai and Amla powders mix) and deep conditioned (avocado, coconut milk, evoo and raw honey) my hair. I felt a difference right away. My very fine hair had so much strength after the Ayurvedic treatment. You would have thought I was Samson the way I was going around pulling on it. I was so surprised to see how little my hair was shedding (something it was doing non-stop before the wash) that I’m almost hesitant to mention it aloud for fear of jinxing it. Not really. I don’t believe in curses.

Anyway,  I can’t thank blogger All Things O’Natural enough for introducing me to Ayurveda. Also a big shout out to blogger the Moptop Maven for her the kick a$$ recipe for the cleansing mixture.
Mix
2 Tablespoons Amla
2 Tablespoons Shikakai
1 Tablespoon Neem Powder

Combine with enough water to make a thick paste. Apply evenly on wet, freshly pre-conditioned hair, and massage gently massage mixture on to scalp. Allow to sit on hair for about 15 minutes (mine stayed on for almost 30), then rinse thoroughly with cool water. Follow up with a basic light ACV rinse to remove any additional oils/residue left behind. [1/2 cup of ACV + 2 cups water] (I followed up with the deep conditioner and finished off with the ACV rinse.)

The recipe for the DC came from Dr. Phoenyx Austin on CurlyNikki’s blog.

Mix
¼ cup of Coconut Milk (full fat)
¼ cup of Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1 small avocado
1 tablespoon raw honey (my addition because I love this stuff)

I left the DC on for over an hour (with 45 minutes – 1 hour of it under my not-so-hot heating cap). My hair is no where near as soft as it was when I did the Coconut Milk Protein Treatment, but it was soft. *SMH* Leave it to my hair to be super moisturized using a protein treatment rather than a deep conditioner. Your experience with any product or treatment is do dependent on your actual hair (texture, length, health, time of day, weather, etc…) that you can’t just agree to (or dismiss) something based on the experience of someone else.

This brings me to my next experiment – Henna. I am trying it for the first time next week, God willing. I’ve been hearing a chorus of pros and a solo of cons. I’m looking forward to seeing how it works for me. Of course I’ll be posting here to let you all know.

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Doubt (no, not the movie)

I’m attending a 13-week series on prayer and we’re using the book No Easy Road by Dick Eastman as the guide. I haven’t started reading the book yet (I missed the first two parts of the series), but so far the series is having a great impact on me.

The third session of this series is entitled The Peak of Unbelief. It’s about the barrier that doubt places on prayer. Something that I’ve been struggling with. It was jarring to hear that doubt, like faith, is a choice. Although I hate saying it, I sometimes find myself thinking “I can’t help it” when I don’t trust God to do what I’ve prayed about. But the truth is I’m making that choice to doubt, and not fully trust in Him. Where is my faith?

Another great point that was brought up is that when you’re constantly in fellowship with God you gain a sensitivity to what He wants for your life. As such your prayers will align with His desires for you. To answer the question ‘Where is my faith?’ (at least as it relates to prayer), it was shaken a few years ago when I failed to received something that I prayed for and wholeheartedly believed that I would receive. What I’m learning (now that I’m trying to rebuild my faith in prayer) is the truth behind praying for the things God wants for your life.  It’s very easy to be upset about the prayers God doesn’t grant us without considering whether this would have been the best thing for us.

Here are some takeaways from last night’s session. Be motivated to walk in fellowship with God, pray and TRUST that He is listening and wants to grant your requests.

Would love to hear about your prayer journey, or your journey with doubt.

Takeaways

Hebrews 11:6 (NLT) – It is impossible to please God without faith. Anyone who wants to come to him must believe that God exists and that he rewards those who sincerely seek him.

“It matters little what form of prayer we adopt or how many words we use, what matters is the faith which lays hold on God and touches the heart of the Father who knew us long before we came to Him.” ——-Dietrich Bonhoeffer

“Prayer projects faith on God, and God on the world. Only God can move mountains, but faith and prayer moves God.” ———- E.M. Bounds

Matthew 21:21-22 (NKJV) – So Jesus answered and said to them [disciples], “Assuredly, I say to you, if you have faith and do not doubt, you will not only do what was done to the fig tree [cause it to whither because it did not produce fruit], but also if you say to this mountain, ‘Be removed and be cast into the sea,’ it will be done. And whatever you ask in prayer, believing, you will receive.”

“Prayer is asking for rain. Faith is carrying the umbrella.” ———Robert C. Savage

Points to Ponder:

Why do you think doubt is so destructive to the prayer life of a believer? How can a believer build his or her faith in such a way as to diminish the impact of doubt when it comes to praying believing prayer?

Take the time in prayer to express to the Lord the things that you feel have created doubt in your walk with Jesus. Ask God to bless you with supernatural grace to pray “without fear or doubting.”

 

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Coconut Milk Protein Treatment

O.M.Wow! I tried blogger All Things O’Natural’s Coconut Milk Protein Treatment yesterday and just about fell out of my chair with happiness. My hair absolutely LOVES this concoction!

  • 1 can of Organic Coconut Milk
  • 4 TBSP of Raw Honey (remember, raw honey is the most beneficial because you get all of the raw nutrients.
  • 4 TBSP of Extra Virgin Olive Oil

It was messy to pour on, but so worth it. I felt the difference the moment it touched my hair – soft without feeling greasy. I initially co-washed my hair afterwards rather than shampoo it, but the conditioner did not do a good job of rinsing it out. This would have been fine had I not been planning to do the Greenhouse Effect Treatment. It just seemed like too much oil for my hair. Thinking back, I think it would have been okay not to shampoo.

Anyway, after more than an hour this treatment left my hair feeling more moisturized than strengthened, but my hair texture is weird.

I recommend giving it a try. Let me know how it works for you.

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Going “natural” is more than just your hair

By Dr. Phoenyx Austin posed the question “Natural Hair: Just Hair Today- Or Here To Stay?” on Curly Nikki’s blog today.

My answer to her is that it’s difficult to go natural as a fad because “natural” is so much more than just what you do to your hair. Those who go into it thinking it’s a phase will learn quickly that it’s much too time consuming and intricately tied to other aspects of one’s life for it to be so. From my perspective, going “natural” forces you to reevaluate everything: what you eat, what types of bad habits you have, how you take care of your skin, how you maintain your health, and so forth.

Speaking of maintaining one’s overall health, I’ve started including Green Vibrance in my diet. I, thankfully, don’t know the true taste of butt water. However, this comes as close to it as I can possibly imagine. It tastes better when put into a smoothie, but mixing it with plain water is disgusting. Oh, the things we do for good health.

I just started taking it a week or so ago so I can’t confirm if it’s effective. I do know that I don’t feel as tired and worn-down as I usually do – a consequence of suffering from iron deficiency anemia all my life.

I’ll keep you posted on how it’s working. Eventually I’ll post the list of vitamins that it includes.

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Kettlebell Exercises for Idiots

It’s been 10 days since my last post. That’s like 10,000 years in the world of blogging. I did make it clear that I can be a procrastinator. What? How’s it my fault you didn’t read the ‘About Me’ section? Okay, okay, can we be friends now? Phew, thanks. I hate it when we fight.

So, although I’m procrastinating with my writing, I haven’t been doing the same with my running. I’ve been really good about staying motivated. It’s nice that my hubby has decided to join me.

Anyway, now I’ve going to add core strength training to my routine by trying Kettlebell exercises. I recently learned about it from the lovely blogger Hairscapades.  She’s got some kick butt abs. I searched Kettlebell exercises for idiots (well, maybe not that exact search term) and found a beginner lesson on Youtube.

Now all I have to do is figure out where the heck to get the bells.

Anyway, have you ever tried it? What’s been your experience? Want to join me on my journey?

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Night of Baking my Hair

Oh, what an exciting Friday night! Watching The Dark Knight with the hubby (only after I begged him to switch from golf *insert glassy eyes*) and baking my hair. Well, not exactly baking. But I am seated underneath a heating cap with a mixture of eggs, mayo and olive oil slathered all over my hair, and furiously wiping my neck because the heat is causing this concoction to drip. *SMH* The things we do for beauty.

Natural beauty is time consuming, but lots of fun. I’m excited to embrace my inner natural chemist now that I have all these oils, gels, and butters. I just have to remember I promised hubby that I wouldn’t melt, set on fire, or blow up anything in the house. As if I don’t know what I’m doing. He’s such a worrywart. 🙂

Some random pics for your enjoyment.

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Quarterly State Tax Deadline for Small Business Owners

Dear New York State Department of Taxation and Finance,

While I can appreciate that your team is hard at work penalizing small business owners like me who have a hard time sticking to your quarterly tax deadlines, that still doesn’t excuse the 50-minute wait to speak to a human being.

Contrary to your automated message, my call is obviously NOT that important to you.

Yours,

One of the many peons trying to carve out a piece of the American Dream

Posted in Entrepreneur, Finances, Money, Pain in the butt | Leave a comment