It is summer! And for my family this year, it has been the season of gardening and living green. We finally expanded and fenced in our vegetable garden. If the crops fail, I won’t be blaming the deer this year. With a little luck and a lot of faith we may get some tomatoes, beans, potatoes, Brussel sprouts and kale. My little strawberry plant is still too small, but I did spy one tiny berry! I have expanded my herb garden, too, and our front yard is teeming with the pollinator plants I’ve been putting in for the past three years. While we will never be farmers, or herbalists, or native plant experts, it all feels wonderful. So satisfying. So connected to the Earth. And at the end of the day…I’m sore as hell and Don has a smell way beyond sweaty. You, too? I’ve got suggestions, so keep reading.

My daughter Heather—the pro at all this—has a new job working with native plants and creating environmentally progressive landscaping solutions for big-league clients! So far she has spent hours and hours eradicating bush honeysuckle—all the way from Missouri to Kansas! But she loves her new job, and we are so proud of her.

Heather has discovered, though, that despite her physically fit little body, her skin is taking a beating. Those tiny little wrinkles that come with long hours outside are popping up. But her mama had an answer for that, as well. With help from the New Hope Network Blogger Box and my wonderful friends at Dayempur Farm we are all plowing ahead…so to speak.

Sample pack of Probulin Probiotics for your skinA while ago, when the latest New Hope Network Blogger Box arrived, Heather was excited to find a generous sample pack of Probulin Probiotics—these are topical probiotics for your skin. There was cleansing gel, facial serum, night cream, day cream and (her absolute favorite) marula eye cream. Once the new job started, she used them faithfully until they were all gone and really noticed a difference in how smooth, soft and clear her skin became. Little lines and crinkles began to fade, so she’s hooked.

According to their mission statement, Probulin offers only the very best in quality as it relates to living probiotic cultures and supporting nutrients and are dedicated to making sure all their ingredients are “safe and free of things that could potentially harm the body such as GMO’s, wheat, gluten, magnesium stearate, phthalates….”

Further, Probulin is a company that gives back. Here’s their take on community partnership: “Probulin believes that each one of us has the opportunity to make a difference in the lives of those that may be struggling with life challenges. Companies should play their part, too. That is why a core value of Probulin is to actively support partners and charities that work to improve lives, preserve and nourish our planet, and enhance our communities.” Impressive, yes?

So if you are looking for a bit more help this summer when it comes to keeping your skin healthy and beautiful, give Probulin a look see. You know probiotics are great for your gut, right? Now you can nourish your system from both the inside and the outside! And if you want to add safe suncreens to your skin regime, revisit my blogger box post from this time last year for recommendations on keeping your skin healthy along with the planet!

bottle of Prep U for guys natural deodorantNext let’s deal with Don’s sweaty pits. Okay, so maybe you would rather skip that. I get it (SO get it.). But should you be experiencing a similar issue and are reluctant to use the mass-market deodorants and antiperspirants, which can contain questionable and even harmful ingredients, I have the perfect solution! Prep U!

What an amazing little product from an amazing company.  The citrus mint scent is so fresh and summery, and Don is impressed with its effectiveness. This is saying a lot, trust me. The man really notices very little when it comes to these sorts of products; he just reaches blindly for whatever I have put in the bathroom cupboard with little comment or care. Not this product. He loves it!

And I love it, too, but mostly for other reasons that, I feel, make it superior to other choices in the antiperspirant line. Prep U Products are marketed heavily to young adults—actually to their moms. This is because, I think, moms worry about the chemicals and harmful processing that go into most commercial personal hygiene products, especially as their children move into early adulthood and their bodies are drastically changing. With Prep U, there’s just no worry. How do I know that? Because Prep U has earned the coveted and hard-to-achieve Environmental Working Group Verification Seal. Smart, responsible and safe, so don’t let the youth marketing messages deter you from trying these products. Don, at 67-years-young, will tell you this product works at any age!

2 oz. bottle of Dayempur Herbals Inflammation and Pain Relief with Essential OilsFinally, there is me and my aching muscles and joints, as well as my tender sinuses. After a day out in the garden, I am sore all over. However, I am not one to reach for strong pain relievers or drugs for inflammation, even if they are topical. I am not comfortable filling my body with antihistamines and other medications, which only mask symptoms anyway. Still, I have spent some sleepless nights lately with shoulder pain and a stuffy, aching head.

Until, that is, I reached for Dayempur Farm’s Inflammation and Pain Relief Essential OilsRemember my trip to Dayempur? Unbelievably, it’s been over a year now. And this lovely product comes from herbs grown right there on the farm; then, it’s small-batch processed and sold locally. Love it! And it certainly works. The best part is that its beautiful herbal scent is a pleasure all its own. No strong menthol odor, no uncomfortable cold and clammy feel, no burning, no artificial anything. Just this warm and soothing herbal rub that is as effective on my sore sinus temples and under my stuffy nose as it is massaged deep into my shoulders and legs. A keeper for me for sure. And because it is so mild and gentle, I use it as a hand rub the last thing before bed to ease my arthritic fingers, which are cramped these days from all that digging. A lovely, relaxing end to the day.

So there you are. Three products that will make your summer that much more sweet, comfy, safe and green. So let’s dig in!