Home Wellness

Sustainable Home Farming

Did you know that the average piece of produce travels up to 2000 miles and spends almost half its shelf life in transit before it gets on a shelf.  To prepare it to withstand transit, it must be picked before it is fully ripened.  The early harvest and time off the vine can end up diminishing the nutritional value of that produce by up to 46%. 

Home, organic, hydroponic growing is lighting up the wellness scene, but who’s got time to tend to a farm!! Thanks to Lettuce Grow, a company founded by Jacob Pechenik and Zooey Deschanel, home growing is simple, requires no time and space, and they’ve taken care of the hardest part of home growing by shipping you pre-germinated seedlings each month.

Lettuce Grow was inspired by The Farm Project, an organization also founded by Zooey and Jacob. The Farm Project aims to re-connect people with their food, provide access to easy home growing solutions, and to connect communities with their local farmers.  Lettuce Grow donates 1 farmstand back to the community for every 10 sold.

Farmstands start at $399, Use or share the code REWELL19 for the first month of seedlings free (up to $69 value)  https://www.lettucegrow.com/  

Tear sheet available to share in your agency home page.

Spring Cleaning - Beyond the Dirt

After purchasing a new home, most people like to give the house a good deep cleaning. But usually, we only focus on cleaning the dirt we see. Scrubbing surface areas, cleaning carpets, wiping down walls, and disinfecting bathrooms are high priorities.

But there’s more to cleaning than removing the dirt we see. Have you ever considered how the residual toxins lurking in your home, that often come from cleaning products and artificial fragrances dirty a space? Or how negative energy remaining in your home from the previous owners might affect your home? Did you know that even new buildings can be filled with stale or unpleasant energy?

To help you clean beyond the dirt, here are extra steps to help you ensure your new home is not only clean, but that it feels welcoming to your family and serves as a sanctuary for prosperity, abundance, and good will for years to come.

Reduce Indoor Air Pollution -

After a deep clean allow a few extra days to let the home to breath and be further cleansed. Let as much natural air into your home as possible after cleaning to fully rejuvenate your space.

If you have new furniture, bring it in a few days prior to moving in to allow it to settle and off-gas any toxins from its materials. Keep the windows open during this time if possible, as fresh air will help carry any indoor air pollution out of the house.

Additionally, place salt lamps and beeswax candles throughout your home to neutralize positive ions that cleaning products, furniture, and building materials can release into the air. If you have indoor plants, this is a great time to place them in the home as they are optimal natural air purifiers. Traditional air purifying machines are also great for cleansing the air. And don’t forget to clean HVAC systems and replaced any and all filters during this period.

Energy Clearing -

Space or Energy Clearing refers to the art of cleansing and consecrating spaces traditionally practiced in many cultures. Strand Hill's in-house Feng Shui and Home Clearing Specialist, Angela Sabatasso, notes that it is one of the best techniques if you want to notice an immediate difference in your space as energy tends to accumulate, much like clutter, and causes disharmony in the space that can ripple out to affect your life.

Clearing the energy in your home can easily be done on your own. Energy Clearing can be done privately and quickly, or as a ceremony with your family to bless your new home and set new and positive intentions. The most common practice of space clearing is smudging, or the burning of particular herbs, such as sage and sweetgrass. Sage is known to cleanse, purify, and remove negative energy, while sweetgrass (often burned after sage) brings in the energy of peace and love, a sweet offering back into the space.

After you’ve properly cleaned your home and are ready to move in, the continued use of indoor plants, salt lamps, beeswax candles and even specific crystals can help keep your home toxin and negative energy free - clean beyond the dirt. At Strand Hill our real estate professionals and wellness specialists are here to help with expert referrals and local resources to make new home and spring cleaning easy and enjoyable for you.

5G & EMF’s Protecting your family & your home. 

In this week’s post I get to share my two passions with you, wellness and technology.   

But Before I do… Kudos to Brittani and Abby for staying in top 5 on BOTH leader boards for exercise minutes and steps.. Keven coming up in the ranking for minutes, but Amy still has you beat! Karynne hits the minutes chart at #5 and  Lynne & Juliette keeping the top step spots warm!!  Keep it up gang!

Technology is moving so fast that a new generation of wireless signal technology has been introduced about every 10 years since the 1980’s. Which brings us to the current and 5th generation, 5G. 

The excitement of 5G is countered with equal amounts of skepticism from those who study the health effects of radiation and the dangers of EMF’s. No matter what side the fence you sit, we can all agree that technology is moving at a rate faster than we can research.  (Just think, it took us 100 years for the FDA to finally declare that Trans-fats were killing us.)

5G has a signal strength 45x that of 2g and while opponents of the dangers of EMF will claim that these non-ionizing frequencies are safe (vs ionizing, such as x-rays that disrupt the cellular membrane and cause damage cells). The current research supports that they are potentially carcinogenic.  (research links here)

Since we can’t get away from exposure, here are a few ways to minimize it and protect your family.  

  • Use wired internet whenever possible

  • Turn off all unused wireless devices especially at night (or use a timer)

  • Remove all wireless devices from bedrooms (unless they are powered down). 

  • Place shungite or black tourmaline stones in sleeping areas or in office areas where wireless devices are (offices, etc.) *don’t place these directly on or too close to the device).  

  • Use a land line for calls, speaker on your cell if you must, or wired headphones.  Use bluetooth as a last resort for calls.  

  • Keep at least 1-inch distance between your body and your devices (don’t keep your phone in your pocket or use your laptop on your lap)

If you are really concerned you can purchase an EMF reader form between $175 and $350 to better asses your exposure.  There are products such as phone and tablet cases that are available and claim to reduce exposure, however some if not used properly can actually increase your exposure.  The most effective products have been EMF blocking blankets and clothing articles. Most useful in women who are pregnant and men and women trying to conceive, as EMF exposure has been linked to infertility. 

Cleaning with bacteria... What?

10 years ago, the thought of eating bacteria was unheard of..… today, healthy bacteria is promoted in health foods (fermented foods, yogurts, etc.) and sold separately in the form of probiotics.  This is because we now understand that not all bacteria is created equal and can most easily be categorized as harmful or helpful bacteria. The helpful bacteria is said to crowd out the harmful, giving it less room to colonize and take over the environment. 

When bacteria colonize together they form a biofilm. In nature, biofilm is a healthy part of the ecosystem, however it is not and should not be so welcome in your home.  For example the pink-orange stains you might see on your toilet or in your shower is a common form of biofilm, mostly comprised of the bacteria S. marcescens which is harmful to humans and not even bleach can break it down without harsh scrubbing. 

After scrubbing, you end up with a completely sterile surface, right?  Not so fast, similar to how antibiotics destroy both the harmful and helpful bacteria of your gut, this type of cleaning also destroys both types of bacteria, leaving the surface ripe for the recolonization of more harmful bacteria. The solution, cleaning your hard surfaces with probiotic cleaners, cleaners that after cleaning leave helpful bacteria behind to prevent and crowd out unwanted pathogens.  Interesting, right?  Two products have caught my attention, the cleaning sprayhttps://countercultureclean.com/ and a room spray. https://www.homebiotic.com/

While we’re on the topic of bacteria, you’ll only need this one reason to break up with your kitchen sponge.  An infamous study out of Germany concluded that the average sponge could have up to 45 billion bacteria per square centimeter, far more than you’ll find on a toilet seat.  It is best to use a cloth with natural fibers, swapping it out daily and letting it thoroughly dry between uses.  


Smudging for Home & Energy Clearing.

Smudging (burning incense or herbs) is an ancient ceremonial practice where sacred plants or herbs are burned to cleanse or drive away negative energy and restore balance to people, places, and/or things. The rising of smoke is deeply symbolic across many religions and cultures, most notably rooted in the spiritual practices of the early indigenous American people.  The ascension of the smoke represents the ascension of payers and intentions, bringing them up to the Gods.  Today, smudging is a common practice void of any particular religious connection.  

Smudging is very easy and does not require a professional, only the herbs, a flame resistant bowl (or abalone shell), some safety precautions, and your good intentions. In real estate, it is quite common to smudge sage in a new home or a new listing.  The attached social image shows you 4 herbs to smudge besides just sage.  

Check out this article for a full list of herbs and for more detailed  instructions on smudging.  https://www.elephantjournal.com/2016/07/a-beginners-guide-to-herbs-smudging/

Real Estate Wellness - 2018 Global Review

Highlights from the GWI Global Trend Report (discussed this morning)

The global wellness institute is a non-profit organization for research and education of the health and wellness industry.  At the end of each year they produce a report called the Global Wellness Economy Monitor which highlights different sectors of the wellness market.  Of particular interest to me (us) is the section called Real Estate Wellness

“Investment in our homes should also be a strategic investment in our health.

For most people, our home represents our most important personal investment and one of our largest expenditures (about 20% of all consumer spending, or more than $9 trillion in 201727), so it is only logical that our home should also be an investment in our health and wellbeing. Yet, wellness lifestyle real estate is a nascent industry that is not well understood by consumers, real estate developers, and investors.“

In the last year:

  • The Global Wellness Economy grew from 3.7 to 4.2 trillion

  • Wellness Real Estate was renamed: Wellness Lifestyle Real estate to encompass the growing trend of lifestyle preferences into the real estate market

  • This sector of the market grew from 118b to 134b, showing a 6% growth, projected to grow annually at 8% to 197 billion by 2022.

  • The wellness lifestyle real estate pipeline consists of 740 projects across 34 countries in 2017. (for more read the build well to live well section of the full report)

For the full report visit https://globalwellnessinstitute.org/

Set Up for Sleep Success!

Wellness Wednesday – Set up for SLEEP Success!

(.5 minute read)


It’s “Sleep Month” at JHREA- This month I’ll be honing in on your sleep.  Sleep is your first line of defense for health, wellness, vitality, and energy.  During a proper sleep cycle your body cleans up the damage from the day, re-sets your hormones, and restores your muscles and joints to prepare for the next day.


It is estimated that 1 in 3 adults struggle with sleep at least once per week and that 40% sleep less than the minimum recommended amount of 7 hours of sleep. 


Light exposure and body temperature are two of the most common sleep disruptor because they inhibit melatonin production. Melatonin is the hormone that initiates and regulates your sleep cycle, it is also an anti-aging hormone.  Here are 8 things you can do to keep both in check!


●      Finish all meals and drinks for the day, with the exception of a few sips of water as needed.

●      Set your bedroom temperature between 60 and 68 degrees Fahrenheit, to cool your body and increase melatonin production.

●      Dim your lights or use special bedroom or light adjusting bulbs to prepare your body for rest. 

●      Stop using all electronics or if you must use blue light blocking glasses and ensure you have nighttime settings applies on your devices. Blue light, or the light emitted from electronic devices inhibits melatonin production, which will keep you awake and may prevent you from getting into deep sleep at night.

●      Choose high quality cotton such as Egyptian or Pima, eucalyptus and bamboo fibers are also excellent choices.  Thread counts between 180 and 300 are ideal, as they allow for air to circulate better to keep you cool.

●      Sleep in your birthday suit, research suggests you stay cooler and your skin can breathe easier when you skip the pjs!


Next week, sheets and bedding tips for the ideal sleep experience!


Have a great week and get some sleep!


The Quantified Self - 10 Tech-Inspired Wellness Gifts

The Quantified Self -  My Top 10 Tech-Inspired Wellness Gifts

(.5 minute read, online shopping time excluded)


The Quantified Self, or the idea of self-knowledge through self-tracking isn’t new. According to his autobiography Benjamin Franklin created a daily tracking system of his 13 virtues to improve his character in 1726, he was only 20 years old!


Today people are taking control of their own health, trying to solve complex problems that many of our healthcare practitioners have failed to solve.  Using data to find answers to questions such as; “why can’t I lose weight, why am I always so tired, why is my skin becoming discolored, why does my stomach always hurt”.


With a little bit of education and the help of some of the latest trends in technology, we can gather more information than we know what to do with.  There is an endless list of activity trackers and smartphone apps, but here are my top 10 tech-inspired wellness gifts:


In my personal collection:

Blue light blocking glasses, $70* - Blocks blue light from electronics for better sleep.

Polar h10 heart rate sensor, $90 – Bluetooth enabled heart rate band compatible with many apps, smart watches, and fitness equipment.

Heart Math Inner Balance, $130* - Heart rate sensor to decrease and manage stress.

Muse, $200* - A brain sensing meditation training device.

LightStim, $250* At home LED light therapy for wrinkles, acne, or pain management.


Top on my Christmas list:

Oura Ring, $299* - Overall lifestyle and wellness tracking wearable ring.

Dreem or Smart Sleep $500* – Sleep enhancing and tracking wearable headbands.

Halo Sport $350* - Brain sensing headband to improve motor learning & cognition.

Brain Gauge $29/mo* - Brain training tool for optimizing overall brain health.

*Prices are approximate, not including holiday promotions.


Reach out if you need help finding a gift for your favorite wellness junkie!

Guest Post - Principles of a Healthy Home

Wellness Wednesday Live – In office presentation happening today!


READ BELOW to learn about the “Fall Back to Wellness” Challenge kicking off in 1 week – in partnership with Healthy Being! 

Sign up here & see 8 reasons you need to detox! (read more below)


I’ve written a lot about indoor air quality lately as we are learning more and more about how it affects our health, often going unnoticed until it’s too late.


According to Vickie Memmer of Teton Healthy Homes, most people spend about 70% of their time indoors, more for children and the elderly.  “The air we breathe indoors can be more polluted than the outside air”, Says Vickie.  The medical community is on alert as many diseases are now being linked to indoor air pollutants.


A healthy home supports and protects the health and safety of its occupants. Good home maintenance can act to reduce allergens, prevent illness, and reduce injury from accidents. When was the last time you inspected your attic for leaks, or looked in in your crawl space for signs of moisture or pests? What about your dryer vent? Is it vented to the exterior of your home or does it dead end in your attic? When was the last time you checked it for lint accumulation that could pose a fire hazard?


Today Vickie Memmer will present the Seven Principles of a Healthy Home as outlined by the National Center For Healthy Housing.  During the presentation she’ll share a checklist and basic guidelines for an annual DYI healthy home check-up.  I’m sure you’ll enjoy it as much as I have enjoyed learning from her.


Fall Back to Wellness – a 4 Week wellness challenge for JHREA associates and staff, in coordination with Healthy Being.

Our 4 week challenge will help you make health changes to your diet and lifestyle leading up to Thanksgiving.  Many of you participated in our Sugar-Free September challenge and asked for more challenges like this. These challenges are a simple away to contribute to your personal wellbeing and to learn a little extra outside of our weekly wellness content.  Healthy Being will package a few detox options for those of you that want to super charge the experience, together we’ll provide custom content just for you! 


You must sign up to participate and receive this bonus content!  Sign-up HERE & see 8 Reasons why you should! Challenge begins next Wednesday 10/24. 

Reply with any questions you may have.  Look forward to sharing more healthy goodness with you all!


To detoxifying your home and your body,


Guest Contribution - Choosing a Mattress

Choosing the Healthiest Mattress


I hope you all slept well, speaking of sleep, did you know that your mattress and the materials it is made from can impact your health!  I enlisted the help of Vickie Memmer owner of Teton Healthy Home Inspection Services to give us the scoop on healthy mattress options. 


“The healthiest mattresses contain no polyurethane foam, no added chemical flame retardants such as PBDEs, low VOC certification, no added fragrances or antimicrobials, No PVC or vinyl.” To learn what all of these fancy acronyms stand for and how they can negatively impact your health, read and share the attached informational tear sheet!


Have a healthy and Happy Wednesday,


Guest Post - “Feng the Shui” out of your Kitchen

“Feng” the “Shui” out of your Kitchen


Learn how to use the energy in your home for health, luck, and prosperity using the ancient principles of Feng Shui, starting in your kitchen.  You’ll learn subtle shifts you can make in your kitchen, such as why putting a mirrored or shiny object on your stove can help you make more money…..  Read it & share it here https://jhrea.com/feng-shui-tips-kitchen/


PDF attached and available in the media center.

Indoor Air-Purifying Plant Guide

Good Morning Strand Hill & Happy Wellness Wednesday!  Today’s post is packed with shareable content! 


  1. Tear Sheet – Custom curated guide to the 12 best indoor plants for air purification and the exact toxins/chemicals each plant removes.

  2. Social post – perfectly sized for Instagram and facebook.  Images with less text will get more engagement. Use this post to interact with your followers, even asking then to contact you for the full plant list, a perfect way to start a conversation.  (ex.  “Message me to find out which ones are best”)

  3. You can also post the actual tear sheet (full list) pdf to your facebook or linked in profiles.  Here’s the copy:


Indoor plants are not only beneficial to your wellbeing, but also to your health as some plants have the ability to clean and purify the air.  Indoor air is easily polluted by common household products, fragrances, synthetic fabrics, pesticides and more.  These 12 plants have been identified as some of the best at removing these harmful toxins, Use the infographic to see which plants are best for your home.


Research recommends 2 plants per 100 sqft of space, plants with more surface are on their leaves have the best purification potential.

Natural Home Cleaning Essentials

Did you know – Traditional cleaning solutions are responsible for 11% of poison exposure, according to the poison control center.  These ingredients are not federally regulated and have been liked to asthma, cancer, reproductive disorders, hormone disruption, and neurotoxicity. 


The attached tear sheet is a handy shortcut guide to creating personalized cleaning solutions for the home.  NO need for complicated recipes, just a few oils and a few ingredients, most of which are already in the kitchen! 



This week – Share this post or ANY piece of wellness contest and enter to win a Custom Wellness Home Cleaning Essential Oil Gift!!

●      Social - Tag or mention Strand Hill in your post (@ or #), one entry per post

●      Email- Forward to, bcc or send screen shot to me for email entries, one entry per email recipient

●      Post -  in a blog or newsletter, copy or send link to me, one entry per post


Earn multiple entries for better chances.  Must post by Tuesday 8/21.  Winner announced Wednesday 8/22.  

All wellness resources are in dropbox in the “Wellness Resources” folder.

Home Lighting for you Health!

The lights in your home can have a huge impact on your health!

Corey Hart was on to something with his 1983 hit “Sunglasses at night”! Little did he know biohackers (people who study biology hacks for longevity and optimal health) across the globe would be wearing orange colored glasses at night. These glasses are designed to block harmful blue light that disrupts circadian rhythm and promotes ill-health when exposure is artificial and mistimed.                                                                   

Before 1879, when Thomas Edison patented the electric lightbulb, people relied on candles, lanterns and fires for sources of light after the sunset. Just 3 decades ago, researchers at Harvard discovered that light in fact governs our interval clock, known as circadian rhythm. Research on light, particularly blue light has been on the rise, especially since the introduction of computers and personal electronic devices. So much so that the 2017 Nobel Prize in “Physiology or Medicine” was awarded for such research.

Here's what we know:                                                                  

Exposure to blue light before bedtime is linked to a 99% of melatonin suppression and up to 90 minutes of decreased duration of melatonin.

Melatonin is essential for restful sleep, brain health, gut health, and fertility. it is also a powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory.                                                                      

Melatonin production is suppressed when cortisol levels are high, particularly due to artificial lighting, stress, and late night meals or snacking, particularly high carbohydrate or sugary snacks.

Heart attack, asthma, arthritis, depression, diabetes & obesity instances are higher in those sleeping less than 7 hours per night.                                                                      

Here's what you can do about it:                                                                       

Swap out LEDs for incandescent or low-voltage incandescent halogen lights or Consider a Smart Home system such as Nest or Alexa to program lighting shifts from day to night.

Get exposure to direct sunlight early in the morning, at times when natural sun is not available consider an indoor wide spectrum white light lamp to simulate sunlight in the morning.

Limit exposure to blue light after sunset, adjust computer, phone and other personal electronics to limit blue light or install apps or software such as f.lux or use apple’s “Night Shift” settings.

Use candle light or orange tinted lights at night, especially in bedrooms.

Use orange tinted, blue light blocking glasses in the evenings where blue light exists (computer/phone use).

This post has an accompanying social image.

BEE-yond soy- The Ultimate Wellness Candle

What says home like the ambiance and fresh smell of a scented candle? Not so fast!

Traditional scented candles are made from paraffin wax, that when burned omit the known carcinogens of benzene and toluene.  These chemicals having been linked to damage to the brain, lung and nervous system, as well as developmental difficulties.

Additionally, paraffin is a petroleum waste product and has to be deodorized and chemically bleached before it can be made into candle wax.

What’s more is that the wicks of traditional candles often contain heavy metals such as lead, where burning them can release those metals into the air.  Although in the US candle wicks are supposed to be made of cotton and paper, studies have reported as much as 30% of candle wicks still contain heavy metals.

Soy candles have been touted supreme as a healthy alternative, however most soy candles still contain paraffin and can be made from non-organic, genetically modified soy.

According to most wellness experts, 100% beeswax candles are the healthiest candle you can burn.  These candles are made with ingredients produced by nature and actually contribute to cleaner indoor air by omitting negative ions that help reduce the positive ions that cause indoor air pollution. They are effective in reducing allergens and a great aid for those with asthma.  Beeswax candles also emit a more natural light (within the spectrum of the sun) making them warmer and brighter than their soy or paraffin counter parts.  Good for you, good for your home, and good for the environment!

If you just can’t live without the smell of a scented candle, you can find 100% beeswax candles made with organic essential oils.  However to get the best of both worlds it is best to diffuse oils in a specialty home oil diffuser as heating the oils can change the chemical structure, potentially reducing their direct health benefits.

Sharing is caring!  Beeswax candles make great gifts too!

This post has an accompanying social media post.

Guest Post - Toxic Top 5

“TOXIC TOP 5”, by Rathna Raju, MD

Toxic chemicals lurk everywhere in our environment, their effects range from no symptoms to severe disease. Extensive research has been done on toxic exposure with numerous studies concluding that 99% of people have been exposed to the chemicals in the house hold products discussed below. Additionally, over 200 chemicals have been found in infant cord blood. 

The chemicals in this list effect hormone balance, are linked to the growing obesity epidemic, autoimmune diseases, cancer, asthma like symptoms and neurodevelopmental disorders such as ADHD and Autism. Common symptoms of toxic exposure may include headaches, general fatigue, changes in mood, nausea, and dizziness.  If you experience any of these symptoms or think you could be at risk, reach out to your physician or contact https://reincarnationmedicalspa.com for more information.

Here are the “Toxic Top 5” and ways to reduce your risk.

1.     Cook Ware – turn in your Teflon for stainless steel.  When heated, Teflon releases harmful chemicals into the air.

2.     Drinking Water- city and well water have concerns for various chemical.  Use a reverse osmosis system to minimize exposure.

3.     Mold or Biotoxin Exposure-  minimize with a dehumidifier or exchange ventilation system to purify indoor air.

4.     Cleaning and personal care products- use natural cleaning and personal products, do not use fabric softeners or air fresheners. 

5.     New Carpets and Furniture-  allow them to “off- gas” outdoors or with open air ventilation before bringing them into your home.  Alternatively use natural materials without flame retardants.  Using a charcoal air filter can help.

The Environmental Working Group put together a list of the “Dirty Dozen” the 12 most harmful chemicals in the environment and common household items. https://www.ewg.org/research/dirty-dozen-list-endocrine-disruptors#.WwNSw2aZPOQ

Home Sanctuaries - 2018 “Hottest Wellness Trend”

Meditation and yoga have become mainstream practices for those seeking more balance in their life and ways to reduce stress.  Your home should already be a sanctuary from the stressors of everyday life, but many people are now dedicating an entire room or small nook for quiet time and inward reflection, making it one of the hottest trends in wellness according to the Global Wellness Institute and Vera Iconica Architecture, a leading wellness based architecture firm in Jackson Wyoming.

Here are 5 things you can do to bring that same tranquility into your home.

TEXTURE - Bring in texture such as blanket and meditation cushions, plush baskets are a great way to store yoga mats, blocks or straps.  Choose earth tone colors and those that are neutral and soothing to you.

  1. LIGHTING - Use only LED lights in the room, those with a dimmer are preferred.  LED remote control candles can help to set the mood and tend to aid in mental focus and clarity. 

  2. ESSENTIAL OILS - Using an essential oil diffuser to soften & cleans the space. Diffuse sandalwood or clary sage for clearing the space ad removing negative energy; lavender to soothe the mind and promote relaxation; and frankincense for  grounding, balance, and openness.  I love Floracopia oils (floracopia.com)

  3. PLANTS - Bring in plants, particularly those with rounded leaves as they are soft and plush and enhance feelings or relaxation and grounding. The Jade plant is one of my favorites, known as the “friendship tree”.  The Jade plant is also an air cleansing plant, capable or removing pollution from your indoor air.

  4. CRYSTALS - Bring crystals into the space, clear quartz and selenite are two of the best crystals to start with as they help with meditative intention and clearing the mind.