HOW TO: Sugar-Free Minimalist Easter Baskets

The words “sugar-free” and “minimalist” are rarely seen together when it comes to Easter Baskets.  There are so many sugary treats out there and there are way too many little toys to occupy little hands for a day or two… or twenty minutes if I’m unlucky.

2014 has introduced a whole new way of seeing the world for my family.  We are learning to let go of the things we “think we need” and embrace the things we actually need.  I contribute our changes to Joshua Becker at Becoming Minimalist.  You should really check out his book, Simplify because it is an amazing book with a powerful message.  More about that will definitely be a post for another day.

I wrote about our Easter Baskets last year.  They were a hit.  Flashlights?  Flip flops?  The Easter Bunny was the coolest dude around town all summer long.  Strangers were informed at the grocery store, swimming pool, and even at the hospital when baby girl was born about the “coolness” of the Easter bunny.

“Do you know who gave me these flip flops?  The Easter Bunny did.”

That fuzzy little fellow got more attention and praise than Santa, the Tooth Fairy, and the “Fart Fairy” combined.  (Once again, the “Fart Fairy” is another story for another day.)

Sometimes Easter and Christmas and celebrations are less about the stuff and more about the magic of it all.  It is about spending time together and making memories and less about the grass and eggs and “stuff.”  Not that the trinkets, the plastic grass that spreads like a wild fire around the house, and the plastic eggs aren’t fun.  Okay, maybe the grass isn’t fun.  But it is more about the magic.  The moments.  The story of the day.  The items are long forgotten years later.

With that being said, I have tried my best to create a sugar-free minimalist Easter basket for my kids.  Minimalism, in my mind, doesn’t always equal frugality.  Minimalism is about planning ahead and thinking through the clutter that you are welcoming into your home.  Call me the “Easter Scrooge,” but I don’t want a dozen cheap Easter toys in my home.  And we really don’t need the candy.


To begin, I made a list of the things my kids need.  Things that regardless of Eater, I am planning to purchase.


The list included things like socks, water-color paint, glue sticks, toothbrushes, toothpaste, summer sandals, a new tie for church, homeschool books, homeschool games, a summer hat for the baby, sporting equipment, etc.


In the end, the baskets each ended up with a couple church socks stuffed in the bottom, a fun book to read, homeschool history readers, and a math/learning game.  Baby girl needed some leggings, a summer hat, and a pair of shoes.


The buckets aren’t new.  We used them last year.  Luckily, they slide right into one another and require little to no space in my storage room.  I plan to use them over and over again until they fall apart.  Thanks to Amazon Prime shipping, the items all arrived today in a big brown box.  I didn’t even have to plan a “without-the-kids” shopping trip.

There you have it.  Sugar-free and minimalism can exist in an Easter basket.  Defying gravity never felt so good.

Wellness Reads

water drop

There are so many awesome resources on the internet written by amazing people.  It is helpful to know that by our little “drops” of change, we can make create big positive “waves” in regards to our health.  At times, healthy habits can feel daunting.  Where does one begin?

The answer is simple.

Pick one thing and start right now.

My road of health is constant and ever learning.  I learn one thing and then apply it.  Then I learn another and another.  My foundation has been largely built upon the messages of people around me that are willing to share.  Their messages are inspiring and healing and I am excited to share four of my favorite “recent” reads with you today.


Now it’s your turn to share.  What have you learned this week?


Miracle Garlic

I love garlic!  Are you like me?  I usually triple or quadruple the amount of garlic in any recipe.  It is tasty, and the health benefits are amazing!

Garlic has often been termed “miracle garlic.”  A major key to garlic’s health benefits is one of at least 33 sulfer compounds derived from raw garlic once it is crushed or finely chopped. The most important health benefit from raw garlic is the compound called Allicin.

Allicin has antibiotic, antiviral, and anti-fungal properties. These properties are most strong as soon as the garlic is crushed and begin to breakdown after exposure to oxygen.  Cooking the garlic reduces the effective Allicin, and microwaving completely destroys it.  Refrigeration of crushed garlic can slow down the breakdown process.

If consumed raw and immediately upon being crushed, one clove of garlic per day may provide enough Allicin, and the rest of the desired health effects of garlic may be consumed in other forms such as garlic powder in capsules or garlic juice or oil. An equivalent of up to 16 cloves per day may need to be consumed by adults wishing to gain an antibiotic effect.  Now, I know that you are thinking that that would be miserable to smell like garlic.  However, for the benefits of garlic for your health when you are ill, the side-effect is well worth it.  In

Purchasing garlic powder and making one’s own capsules is the most economic and convenient way to consume garlic above and beyond consuming a fresh, crushed clove.  However, there are many nutraceutical grade garlic capsules that will do the trick as well.

Addiction Research – Biomarkers

It has been a busy summer!  I hope that through all of the fun activities you have done this summer, each of you have been continuing to take steps to a healthier you!

I am excited to share this video with you.  This is a presentation that I gave at the BYU Grad Talks competition on my research.  It is a brief overview that looks into the neuroscience of addiction and the holistic approaches that can be taken to overcome this problem.

Addiction Biomarkers from Nathan Schilaty on Vimeo.

An Apple a Day…

An apple a day keeps the doctor away.

This simple statement about apples continues to be proven time and time again.  The reason?

Well, apples are packed full of nutrients – even some nutrients that we do not have names for!  In fact, fruits and vegetables have a plethora of nutrients that have not been named nor researched.  It is important to recognize that many times, research tends to focus on single nutrients and not the effects of all nutrients combined in a harmonic effect.  This is due to the fact that in order to make scientific conclusions, you must have comparisons against controls.  The fewer the variables, the easier it is to make solid conclusions.

Some recent research demonstrates that women that consume dried apples regularly effectively lowered their LDL cholesterol, raised their HDL levels, and even lost weight.  Honestly, I am not the least bit surprised.  I only wonder how fresh apples would compare to the results?

I love apples!  I have witnessed the healing benefits of apples time and time again.  They are packed full of nutrients and are one of the most unique fruits that can be grown virtually anywhere in the world.  Apples can be grown in almost any environment around the world and take the longest amount of time to come to maturation, being harvested in the late Fall to early Winter – that demonstrates that it takes a long time to mature excellent nutrition.  My family is known to eat more than 10 apples per day.  We usually shock a lot of people when we go through the checkout aisle with boxes of apples…

Even though I myself am involved in important research into treating addiction, I recognize that it is important that we recognize that health is holistic – not reductionistic.  Apples teach that simple principle by their patience in growth, durability in nature, and power-packed nutrition.  Our bodies respond best to the harmonics that exist in the world around us.

Eating whole foods are always better than taking isolated vitamins.  For some excellent harmonic and wholesome additions to your home cooking, check out our recipes.

With No Hope, There Is No Healing…

What I state to you now, I have stated to patients and students for a long time:

“With no hope, there is no healing!”

You see, the body is only capable physically of what we believe and reinforce that it can do energetically / mentally.  All things are created in energy form prior to manifesting in the physical form.  Ideas (energy) come prior to the product (physical).  This has been observed for millenia and continues to be observed in quantum physics through application of Einstein’s 1905 equation of mass-energy equivalenceE=MC2.

As you look at various health conditions and their outcomes in others, many times the “worst” period is just before the “best.”  Similar to a home being remodeled, the house looks like “junk” for quite some time, and then suddenly, things get cleaned out and the house looks better than before. Healing in our body takes the same course.  All too often, people lose hope when they see the “clutter” or the “pain” of the remodeling… however, this is a necessary step for the healing process to properly occur.

During the moments of hopelessness in healing, we should look inward and find peace and assurance that our bodies are doing their best to function optimally.  We also need to appreciate the “blips” in the road.  After all, if one never had the sense of “hopelessness,” it would be impossible to appreciate the moments that are filled with hope. It is like dark and light – we cannot know the one without fully comprehending the other.

Look at the great results that have occurred so far in your healing – appreciate the changes that have occurred and utilize them to build faith… then with that faith, cultivate hope for the future.

Curing Cancer – Dr. Burzynski

Today’s post is about curing cancer – naturally.

Dr. Burzynski has been doing it for years, but not without facing a lot of opposition from the FDA and other government / quasi-governmental organizations.  In fact, he has been curing some of the most difficult and progressive brain cancers.  Burzynski’s clinic treats patients according to my own philosophy:

“Burzynski Clinic does not believe in a ‘one size fits all treatment’ for cancer patients.  Our care encompasses a personalized and customized approach.”

You see, cancer is too big of a $$$ maker for pharmaceutical companies and for hospitals.  Fear mongering is excellent tactic they use as fear will cause most individuals to lay down any amount of $$$ – life savings, investments, and more – to obtain a cure.  It is an excellent way to get $$$ without taxing you like crazy or stealing it straight from your back account like they did in Cyprus.  But think about it, the current “accepted” methods to treat cancer other than invasive excision is with radiation and with toxic chemicals – the same two things that caused the cancer in the first place!

If you believe that all of the propaganda and “races” for the cure are actually to raise funding to cure cancer, you are wrong.  I had a student many years ago that worked in a cancer research laboratory in Nevada – she eventually left because she knew that they were just promoting a big lie.

Watch the trailer for the 2nd movie on Dr. Burzynski:


Natural cures that have been effective have been discounted.  As you can see in this trailer, even physicians that are trying to heal people are being attacked, treated like fodder, and attempts made to shut them up and put them into prison.  Modern day research is important – I am involved with it every day – but when the corporate profits undermine the actual healing of patients, we have a significant problem.  As individuals, we need to ensure that we take health into our own hands and have a support group of knowledgeable physicians that we can turn to for good advice.

I acknowledge that Dr. Burzynski’s methods may not be for everybody.  I also acknowledge that each individual needs to know their body better.  Ultimately, they are the ones that will be doing the healing… not the doctor.  Just be sure that whichever method you choose to treat cancer, make an educated decision for yourself that is not based out of fear.  Are you sure that the chemotherapy or the radiation is the best therapy?  Educate yourself and choose the best for your body.

Pee On Your Feet

Feet in Shower

I usually get a lot of shocked reactions when I say that.  In fact, I wouldn’t be a bit surprised if you are a bit shocked right now after reading that title.

It is true though, our urine possesses some excellent properties.  In fact, premenstrual mare urine (premarin) has been used for decades to pharmaceutically treat hormonal imbalances (of which I am not a proponent as there are better methods to correct hormonal imbalances), cancer treatments (Dr. Burzynski purifies human urine from healthy patients and gives it to cancer patients), and foot fungus.

When it comes to foot fungus (aka “Athlete’s Foot”), the byproduct of our protein breakdown – urea – serves as an excellent cure to impede the growth of the fungus and stop the infection in days flat.  It is a nitrogenous waste compound that exists in our urine.  And remember, urine is sterile – no need to be grossed out.  I will profess that I have utilized this remedy successfully numerous times when I was living in a damp, moist climate and foot fungus was a common problem.  I have also recommended it to numerous patients who have also reported great results.  Eat your heart out, Tinactin… the tough actin’ comes from urea.


  • Turn off the shower water
  • Urinate on your feet and stomp in the urine for a couple of minutes
  • Wash
  • Rinse

Looking for another alternative?  Coconut Oil is excellent for treating foot fungus as the active compound of coconut oil is anti-fungal, anti-bacterial, and anti-viral.  If you have issues with nail fungus, Oregano Essential Oil works great!

Cinnamon Face Mask

Homemade face masks are awesome for many reasons.  One, inexpensive.  Two, chemical free.  Three, rejuvenating.  The following Cinnamon Honey Face Mask is my mask of all masks.  Cinnamon and honey are drizzled over my pores multiple times a week equates to pure bliss.

Cinnamon Honey Face Mask

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1 teaspoon soft honey
Juice from 1/4 lemon (omit for sensitive skin)

Mix together cinnamon, nutmeg, honey, and lemon into a thick paste.  Gently apply mask on face and put your feet up with a good book for thirty minutes.  At first, this mask provides a gentle burning sensation, but it wears off.  Wash gently from skin with warm water and enjoy your newly detoxified skin!

Easter Baskets {healthy and practical} Are Here.

I finished putting together my kid’s Easter baskets this morning, and I am pretty excited how they turned out.  Our baskets or buckets this year were found in the outside toy section at Target for $1.99 each.  At the bottom of the bucket there is a new bag of ankle socks topped with a large handful of Easter grass.  A pair of flip flops with a flashlight, granola bars, and fruit ropes complete the basket perfectly.  Hopefully a pair of swim goggles will make their way in before the big day.

I plan to fill Easter Eggs with printable jokes from the internet, health food store candy, and clementines – three of our favorite things.

Some other fun and sugar free Easter basket ideas may include:

  • New T-shirts or shorts
  • Pajamas
  • Slippers
  • Baseball cap
  • Sun screen
  • Sunglasses
  • Swimming goggles
  • Church ties
  • New toothbrushes with toothpaste
  • Mouthwash (big deal at my house)
  • New swim suit
  • Crayons, markers, stamps, coloring books.
  • Goggly eyes and art supplies
  • Hair clips for little girls
  • New belt
  • Harmonica
  • Sand box toys
  • etc.

{Happy Spring!}



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