Category Archives: Natural Living

24 Hours In Austin

Unless you live under a rock, you’ve probably heard how cool of a city Austin, TX is. It is the OG “weird” city (sorry Portland, we were “keeping Austin weird” way before you guys, but thanks for sending Voodoo Donuts to the Lone Star State). It is the blue epicenter in the middle of a very red state. Austin has been and always will be many a hipsters’ Holy Land.

I started escaping to Austin when I was in high school. I would skip school and bum a ride an hour north of San Antonio to spend the day exploring a very explorable city. There’s always something happening in Austin, as it is the live music capital of the world. I have so many great memories of concerts in the capital city of Texas, like at SXSW when I snuck in through the VIP section to see The Strokes, or when Explosions In The Sky put on an amazing fireworks show over Lady Bird Lake for their finale. I saw Stevie Wonder at Austin City Limits in 2012 (but he did not see me). I got kicked out of a Mickey Avalon concert (not my fault) at the old Emo’s, and I climbed out of a bathroom window and onto the roof at the iconic Paramount Theatre during a New Year’s Eve Bob Schneider show…

But music is not all Austin has to offer. The food! The nightlife! The friendly drunk people on 6th street! The general atmosphere of this city makes it the reason we’d live there if we were to ever move back to Texas.


Our recent trip to Austin was, unfortunately, pretty limited. We took a Megabus from San Antonio on Monday morning and flew out of the Austin airport and back to Pittsburgh that same evening. We sure did cram a lot into that short time frame, though!

I gotta take a minute to share my new found love of both Megabus and the Austin airport. Holy crap, it was the best transportation day of my liiiiiiife! My friend said she used to take the 1.5 hour long bus ride to and from Austin to party with friends on weeknights and be back for work in San Antonio the next morning. It’s such a cozy ride, you don’t even mind having to sit in the notoriously bad Austin traffic because you can watch movies on your laptop (free wifi!), and you get dropped off right in the middle of downtown by the UT campus. If you’re visiting Austin and want to experience the best tacos in all of Texas, hop on a Megabus and go to San Antonio for a few hours. It’s so easy and convenient! And, dear Lord, Austin Airport- you are the most magical airport I’ve ever been to (*insert hallelujah hands emoji here*). No line at security AND I can take my beer to my terminal? Ohhhh, you da best.



Fresh juice from Jugo, the only healthy thing I had ingested for 72 hours- had to document. Had to!
Austin has a Voodoo Donuts now and it’s huuuuuuge!


Since downtown Austin is on a grid, getting around on foot is extremely easy. We got off of the bus, met my friend Liz for lunch at Leaf downtown (so many great healthy food places in Austin), walked to Rainy Street to gawk at the new high rise condo buildings and adorable restaurants, then crossed the river to South Congress street to window shop and conclude our Texas trip with a couple of local beers. It was a very good day.




I’m gonna have to write a blog post about all the cats we’ve met in all of the cities we’ve traveled to…










Even in the scorching Texas summertime, Austin is a great place to find yourself. We always look forward to visiting ATX and can’t wait to go back!


Ohhhh Austin, we love you so much.

It’s Only Natural: Bathtub Cleaner

There are two types of people in the world: those who get grossed out by the thought of sitting in a tub of one’s own filth, and those who think that there’s nothing more relaxing than a nice, hot bath. I have always been, and always will be, one of the latter. I. LOVE. BATHS.

Growing up, my designated Saturday chore was to clean the bathroom. Part of which was to scour out the bathtub (that our family of 8, minus my dad who has been a strict showerer his whole life, used) with Clorox and Comet. I definitely inherited my mom’s “bleach the living shit out of everything so all the germs will die” mentality, which I have been trying to get away from for a while now. Last time I was in Texas visiting my parents, my sister and I made a deal with our mom that if we cleaned the whole house she’d pay for us to get manicures and pedicures. I volunteered to take charge of my old stomping ground, the bathroom. When it came down to cleaning supplies, instead of handing me the usual harsh, germ murdering chemicals, my mom pointed me in the direction of the kitchen to grab three things: vinegar, baking soda, and dish soap.

Although I had been into finding natural replacements for products for a while at that time, I was still doubtful of how well this technique would work; especially when compared to the lethal combination of Comet and Clorox. I was shocked to see that using natural products actually works so much better than the other stuff! Bonus points for not having to open a window because the fumes are burning your eyes. Here’s how to clean your bathtub using natural ingredients:




  1. White Vinegar
  2. Baking Soda
  3. Dish Soap (optional, you could use water instead*)
  4. Scrubber Sponge
  5. Elbow Grease (but not that much)


How To

  1. Squirt (ew “squirt” is one of my least favorite words ever) some dish soap into your bathtub and use a damp sponge to spread it all around.*
  2. Sprinkle baking soda onto the soap (you really don’t have to use the dish soap, but it helps the baking soda stick to the sides of the tub)
  3. Spray vinegar onto the baking soda and watch it fizzzzzz for a couple of minutes.
  4. Using the scrubber side of your sponge, scrub your tub. The chemical reaction of the baking soda and vinegar should do most of the work for you.
  5. Rinse your tub.

Et viola! This technique has gotten rid of all sort of bathtub gunk, even purple hair dye splatter and glitter bath bomb residue!



Take a bath, wash yo-self. Take a bath. Show me whatcha scrubbin’ with….


It’s Only Natural: Deodorant

Deodorant is something we ALL (probably? I hope so, anyway) use everyday. And since the list seems to go on and on about why antiperspirants and aluminum filled deodorants are bad for you, I made the switch to the more natural stuff about 3 years ago. I’ve never used an antiperspirant because I don’t really sweat THAT much, but because I wear, you know, shirts everyday and the material rubs all up in my ‘pits, I tend to get pretty stinky if I don’t have on any deodorant. To give you an example of how smelly my underarms can get; last spring there was a sewage leak at work on a day I had skipped applying deodorant at all, and my first thought was “holy crap, is that me?!” C’est la vie, I guess?


Of the 5 or so natural deodorants I’ve tried, most of them have sucked. For example, I bought this crystal stick to rub on my armpits and although I followed the directions given by real life users, I think it actually made me smell worse. And just imagine my disappointment when I bought this travel size Alba Botanica deodorant(one of my most trusted all natural brands) to take to Paris last year and it didn’t work at all. I ended up using my husbands deodorant for most of the trip because I’d probably have cartoonish green stink lines coming off of me, like Pepé le Pew, if I didn’t. I also tried this one, but it was kind of expensive and this one that worked well, but I had to reapply quite a few times throughout the day…


It was a long, smelly process, but I finally found (IMHO) THE BEST all natural deodorant! I bought a stick of Schmidt’s from Target on a whim and I LOOOOOOVE IT! The only bad thing was applying this lime scented one right after shaving burned the living shit out of my armpits, but that’s what citrus will do to ya. I’ve since switched to the Rose + Vanilla scent and swear by its greatness! I keep a travel size one in my purse, in case of emergency, too.


Am I getting old because something like finding an all natural deodorant that actually works is wildly exciting to me? Most likely! I can’t help it, I just want to shout “HEY EVERYBODY, COME SMELL HOW GOOD I SMELL” from the nearest rooftop, but probably won’t because that’s be weird, right?


There’s nothing better than a successful pit check, am I right?! Bonus points if you don’t get any deodorant stains on a black shirt or dress.

BTW, this post is #NOTsponsored, but if anyone from the Schmidt’s team is reading this, I volunteer! I volunteer as spokeswoman!

Dress/Nordstrom, Belt/SheIn

It’s Only Natural


photo via

There are two ways of getting into a pool: the first way, you use your big toe to check the temperature and if that feels good, you slowly lower your body in as it gets used to the water. And the second way is… AHHHH! YOU JUMP!

I like to think of this scene from Superstar as metaphor when it comes to taking the plunge into living a more “granola” lifestyle. Though, unlike Mary Catherine Ghallager, we prefer the former method and are going ever so slowly into all-natural, organic living…


Now that we are officially closer to 30 than to 20, we’re getting to be more aware of the products and foods we are putting onto and into our bodies. Did 21 year old Sarah care about how the synthetic fragrances and aluminum in her deodorant could potentially cause breast cancer and/or kidney problems? No! I just wanted to smell nice! Did I give a crap about all the plastic I was wasting by buying the tampons with plastic applicators?! Nope. I cleaned everything with bleach and other harsh chemicals and I never really cared about the effect it had on myself or the world around me. Had Joel, at age 23, ever even heard of Whole Foods or knowingly been within 100 yards of a Farmer’s Market? Probably not, too busy eating chicken wings or whatever… Ha! Just kidding, Joel’s parents are actually two of our healthy living gurus who raised their kids on lentils. Luckily, somewhere along the line, our eyes and minds started to open (thanks a lot to all of our gurus). That old saying about how “our bodies are our temples” always struck a chord with me; and since I plan to live a long and prosperous life, I need to start treating it as such…. Plus, we all need to start caring a little more about this world we have to leave to the generations to come.

The thing is, buying organic versions of all of your beauty/bath products (shampoo, soap, makeup, deodorant, toothpaste, lotion, etc), cleaning products, plus all of your food can be ungodly expensive and ridiculously overwhelming. “Whole Foods? More like ‘Whole Paycheck’ am I right?” Hence the whole “taking it slowly” thing I mentioned earlier. We are implementing holistic teachings as well as plant based meal options bit by bit. I mean, I spent the last 2 years trying to find a good replacement for my old deodorant and I just now found one that actually works. Slow and steady wins the race, doesn’t it?

Going all natural is really not as hard or as expensive as I had originally thought it’d be… I didn’t know until recently that tofu could taste so good or that I could clean the bathtub with just baking soda and white vinegar! I’m glad that that being a little more “crunchy” is the cool thing to be these days. This is a band wagon that people should want to be on and I can’t wait to talk more about it!