Wednesday, May 10, 2017

NOW Women's Probiotic 20 Billion Review and Giveaway

I received this product for free from Moms Meet (, May Media Group LLC, who received it directly from the manufacturer. As a Moms Meet blogger, I agree to use this product and post my honest opinion on my blog. The opinions posted are my own.

I want to be ready for whatever adventure life brings me. 
Nothing is worse than traveling to my favorite vacation spots and then feeling too crummy to get out hiking or biking. It's especially hard being lactose intolerant. No matter how hard I try not to eat dairy, it still finds a way to creep into my diet which leaves me bloated and gassy.

Many years ago, I discovered probiotics. As long as I am faithful about using a good probiotic every day, my digestive issues are nearly non-existant* which leaves me feeling good enough to summit the next peak. 

I've tried many different brands so I was excited to try the NOW Women's Probiotic 20 Billion. I currently use NOW products and consider them high quality. The Women's Probiotic did not disappoint. When I look for a probiotic, I always check out the strains of bacteria to make sure I get the ones that work best. The Now Women's Probiotic contain the Lactobacillus Rhamnosus HN001 strain and the Lactobacillus Acidophilus LA-14 strain which help colonize and maintain a healthy PH in the vaginal tract.* The probiotics also contain Bifidobacterium Lactis H9019 which supports GI regularity and reduces bloating.* I always look for probiotics with 20 billion CFU which stands for Colony-Forming units. Now Women's Probitics has the CFU's I want and need. While I know supplements are not evaluated by the FDA and don't work for everyone, the Now Women's Probiotic worked for me in preventing bloating associated with my diet.

When trying the Women's Probiotic, I paired them with the NOW Super Enzymes and it was a great combination. I could rest at ease with my digestive system working the way I wanted it to. I didn't have any bloating or digestive issues the entire two weeks I tried the products for my review. I didn't have any abdominal pain getting in the way of enjoying an active lifestyle. I already have age slowing me down, I don't need health issues getting in the way too. Besides the fact the I feel better when I use the NOW Probiotics, I like that the pills are not too big. I have a hard time swallowing some supplements because of the pill size. The Now Probiotics are easy for me to swallow for two reasons:  One, the pill size is small enough that I don't get it caught in my throat and two, it is made out of an easier to swallow capsule.

Besides the fact that NOW Probiotics work for me, I'm impressed that NOW is one of the few supplement companies that use DNA fingerprinting technology to guarantee the identity, purity and potency of the bacterial strains used in their products and to identify possible contaminants prior to production. Since the FDA doesn't regulate the products, I'm glad to know that NOW cares enough about their customers to self regulate their products. 

*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.

Giveaway Details

Now Foods has generously offered to give one of my lucky readers one free bottle of Women's Probiotic 20 Billion with a MSRP of $33.99. Please use the Rafflecopter to enter. By entering, you acknowledge you have read the terms on the form and agree to them. Giveaway ends 5/25/2017 at 11:59 EST

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Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Super Soft PACT® Organic Clothing Review

I received this product for free from Moms Meet (, May Media Group LLC, who received it directly from the manufacturer. As a Moms Meet blogger, I agree to use this product and post my honest opinion on my blog. The opinions posted are my own. No monetary compensation received.

I spend a lot of my waking hours in workout clothes. My mornings consist of running, hiking, or going to the gym and inevitably running errands afterwards. I want comfortable workout clothes that wear well and look good. Since I sweat a lot, I want my workout clothes and athleisure wear to wash well and not hold the sweat smell I despise.

I've tried athleisure wear made from organic cotton before but this is the first time I've tried PACT® Organic Clothing. I fell in love with it as soon as I took it out of the box. The first thing I noticed is how soft all of the fabric feels. Regular cotton always seem heavy or stiff. Not PACT Organic Clothing. The cotton is super soft, breathable and lightweight.

I especially appreciate the breathability of the cotton in the undergarments. The sports bra and camisole fit well and dried fast while running errands. I like the underwear so well, I'm planning on ordering more by the end of the week. Not only are they soft, but they are thin enough that they dry quickly. They also don't leave obvious panty lines when I wear them with the leggings.

The hoodie works perfect for running errands on cooler spring days. While I never work out in a hoodie, it's nice to have it when I'm finished with my workouts or runs when  I'm wet from sweat but don't have time to go home. The leggings are comfortable and fit tight the way I like them for working out. I could wear the PACT clothing all day and not feel bad.

With so many things to like about PACT Organic, one of the best things is that the company works hard to make sure their products are ethically produced. I had no idea that conventional cotton is one of the world's dirtiest crops. It uses 16% of the world's insecticides and 7% of the world's pesticides. PACT Organic wants to change that. By using natural processes rather than artificial additions to grow cotton, the crops don't cause as much damage to the soil and the drinking water around it.

It's important to me that PACT Organic partners with Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS) to make sure that farmers and textile workers are paid a living wage and that child labor is NOT used in producing their products. Social responsibility and comfortable products make PACT Organic a company I feel good about recommending to my readers.

Special Offer For My Readers

Pact Organic is offering my readers a 25% discount on their first order. You must use this link with promo code 
when checking out. Expires 8/31/17.

Be sure to leave a comment telling me what you think of PACT Organic or something you want to try.

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Leather Wrap Bracelets Giveaway

Leather wrap bracelets have outdoor enthusiast written all over them. That's why we sell them on our blog. We also carry sterling silver jewelry for those who want to take it up a notch. My favorite is our Take a Hike Bracelet. It's how I feel most days.

Take a Hike Bracelet for Sal

Check out our products page to see our jewelry for the outdoor enthusiast. 

We want our readers to have a chance to win one each of our leather wrap bracelets so we're giving away all four styles to two lucky readers. Check out the four bracelets and enter for your chance to win all four. Want to order gifts for the holidays? All orders over $12.00 placed between now and April 15, 2017 will receive the Tree of Life (bottom left corner) free with their order. All orders must be placed through Paypal.
Giveaway Details:
Use the Rafflecopter form to enter. By entering, you acknowledge you have read the terms on the form and agree to them. Contest ends April 15, 2017 at 11:59 EST. Retail value of prize is $49.46. Giveaway sponsored by blog owner.

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Saturday, March 4, 2017

10 Tips for Staying Safe While Solo Hiking

Post contains affiliate links

If I had to wait to hike until I found somebody to go with, I would never end up on the trail. Besides for an introvert, hiking solo is truly a piece of heaven. 

Before I get started with safety tips, for ultimate safety, it's always best to hike with a buddy. 

Pack plenty of water: I have a friend who volunteers with our local search and rescue. He told me they do more rescues for people who have become dehydrated on the trail than for any other reason. One bottle is not enough and sometimes I don't know I'm getting dehydrated until it's too late. I recommend a 1.5 to 2 liter hydration pack for a three hour day hike under normal circumstances. In very hot weather, pack even more. You can never have too much. It's easier to dump water toward the end of the hike than finding it. I also recommend some type of electrolyte replacement. 

Know the area: I have a large amount of hiking trails close to home. I know the area well and know that I can often get cell phone service depending on how close I stay to the valley. Venturing deep into the backcountry far from familiar areas is not a good idea.

Choose a well marked trail and heavily traveled trail: Where I hike, any trail with a trailhead sign is usually easy to follow. Also, the marked trails are popular enough that even on a weekday, I always see other people. I know even if I get hurt on one of these trails, I won't have to wait long before somebody comes by.        

©Trudy Zufelt

Stay on the trail:

It's hard to get lost if you stay on an obvious trail. But I've known people taking longer than they anticipated on a hike and veering off the trail into what they think is a short cut. Even a smaller trail might not lead to where you think it does. My son did this once in winter and ended up running into a group of lost teens. If my husband and daughter hadn't gone after him, I don't even want to think of what could have happened.

Tell somebody where you plan to hike: I always text my husband or daughter my my planned hiking trail for the day. Even if they forget where I tell them, they can look back at their texts if I don't return home.

©Trudy Zufelt
Stay away from the wildlife

This is especially important for visiting tourists. I have a friend who works summers at a local ski resort. She told me stories of tourists who try to approach the moose. I have encountered moose many times hiking and know I need to stay far away. And yes, I was far away when I took my photo of the two moose. These animals aren't as harmless as they look. A moose will charge when it feels threatened and if you're alone, you probably won't make it off the trail.

Just last summer, I nearly stepped on what looked like a harmless garter snake. After I jumped out of the way and watched it scurry off, I was able to get a photo from a distance. To my surprise, when I cropped the photo, I discovered it wasn't a harmless snake but a poisonous baby rattle snake. These can be even more deadly than a fully grown rattlesnake and because their rattles haven't developed, they don't leave a "verbal" warning. That is why I would never bend down and try to pick up a snake.

Pack extra gear and clothing:
At a minimum, I carry an extra jacket, a small pair of gloves, an extra pair of socks in all seasons. The weather may abruptly change. I've been caught in unexpected thunderstorms more than once and have always been grateful for dry clothes. As far as gear, I always keep my microspikes in my bag during winter hikes or carry a hiking pole. It's always a good idea to carry a multi-tool knife and a set of waterproof matches in case I get stuck overnight.

Pack extra food: I like to carry enough bars or other food so if I get stuck on the trail overnight, I will have enough calories to sustain myself until I can get help.

Carry a cell phone AND a charger: Even if you hike a trail with no cell phone service, it still helps to carry a cell phone. Many of the trails I hike have cell phone service in spots. However, it doesn't do  any good if your battery dies. I carry a small solar charger that I fully charge before I leave, That way, I have a back up if my battery dies and a way to charge the charger again.

Know your limits: That fourteen mile round trip hike to Mt. Timpanogos sounds amazing but if the most I've ever hiked is five miles, I save the longer hike for a day when I can bring someone with. It also might be tempting to hike that peak on a snowy day but I make sure I'm capable of getting up and back before dark.

©Trudy Zufelt

This world is amazing. Don't miss it waiting for others. It's okay to explore on your own but please play it safe.

Thursday, March 2, 2017

Hiking Boynton Canyon Vortex in Sedona, Arizona

Post contains affiliate links.

Before my first trip to Sedona, Arizona in January, I had never heard of a vortex beyond when I'd read in science books. I received a crash course in the New Age Movement and learned that a vortex is an area of concentrated energy. Many people search out these vortexes for spiritual renewal. I have to admit, it sounded a little hokey to me but after hiking the Boynton Canyon Trail to one of the vortexes and witnessing the sun setting across the way, I felt something within that left me in awe.

Getting There

To get to the Boynton Trail, take 89A toward Cottonwood and go about 3.25 miles. Turn right on Dry Creek Road and go 3 miles until the "T" in the road. Make a left hand turn at the T and follow to the next T. At this T make a right hand turn and go about a tenth of a mile. We missed this second T and ended up at the Enchantment Resort and had to turn around. Once we found the parking lot, the trail was marked and easy to find. 

The hike to the vortex is relatively easy. There is very little elevation change and it is only about one mile round trip to the vortex. For those who want a little more hiking, the Boynton Canyon Trail is 3 miles one way and connects to Deadman Pass Trail, Boynton Vista Trail and Long Canyon Trail. Unfortunately, we ended up with a bad weather day and didn't get to do the longer hike. My sister and  I did get a chance meditate for a while on the vortex. As I pondered, I couldn't help but wonder what made the Sedona vortexes so spiritual for those who sought them.

As we stood up to leave, the sun hit the tops of many of the surrounding peaks in what looked like a touch of heaven. It was breathtaking and truly spiritually enlightening. I couldn't help but think it was more than a coincidence. I left with an answer as to what makes Sedona such a special place.

I can't wait to return to Sedona again. I'm sure it will be nearly impossible to repeat the experience of having the sun light the peaks and just the right moment but I'm already convinced that the New Age Movement and vortexes aren't as hokey as I first thought.

Throw on your trail shoes and bring plenty of water and check out Sedona.

Baskets-N-Beyond Gift Basket Giveaway

If you didn't win my last basket giveaway, don't worry.  I've teamed up with Savvy Sweeper and am having another giveaway in time for Easter.

My friend Michele from Baskets-n-Beyond has a beautiful assortment of Easter baskets available on her website and I would like to give one of my Facebook followers a chance to win a basket valued up to $50?

Be sure to check out Baskets-n-Beyond for all of your basket and gift needs!

If you don't celebrate Easter,  no problem.  You can choose any basket up to $50 if you are chosen as the winner.

Disclosure:  Savvy Sweeper Blog is responsible for this giveaway.