Cancer.

That one word brings everyone to pause. If you are reading this blog today, I would almost bet that you marked off in your head people that you directly know, friends, family members, co-workers that have, or are walking down this path. If not personally, then I’m sure you know someone whose life has been touched by cancer. As I type this, I can personally click off friends, family members, family members of friends, co-workers, truly, the list of people whose lives are touched is far too long.
Facts:

As many of you know, I am a consultant with Beautycounter, a skin care company whose social mission is to see the laws change in the U.S. when it comes to the toxins that are allowed in your shampoo, shaving cream, bubble bath, cosmetics, you name it. Eleven is the number of toxins banned from your products. At Beautycounter, we ban 1500.  neverpictureWe lovingly refer to a small portion of those 1500 as our ‘never list’.  Our ingredient screening process is like no other, and I would encourage you to read more about it using this link:
Ingredient process

With all of that being said, for the month of July, as a company, and as an individual, I’m asking you to stand with us to fight back.  We have partnered with Stand Up to Cancer.  Beautycounter is matching donations up to $50,000 to work towards breakthrough in innovative research and new therapies to patients quickly and save lives now.

For the month of July, I will be giving back a portion of my income to this
monstand3umental effort.  Will you stand with us?  There are two ways you can help.
By shopping at my link,  (Beautycounter.com/laurabeck) not only will you get safer products with safer ingredients, you’ll be helping the mission.

You can also use my direct fund raising link – SU2C ~ Laura Beck

There is no purchase too small that you can make, nor any donation amount ‘not enough’.  Every dollar helps, and again, matching funds up to $50,000.

I appreciate you so much!
Feel free to reach out to me with any questions you might have about our mission to get toxins OUT of personal care products.
Growing in Grace,
Laura B.
lgbeck59@gmail.com

 

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Living it Out ~ Step by Step, Part 1.5

Yes, you read that correctly, part 1.5.
In my last blog, Part 1, I shared this:  For about a year prior to his passing, we began to dream big, and decided to live large, as our children had all made it to adult-hood.

Today’s post is more about living life out loud, and what that looks like in my world.  Over the past couple of months, I have felt that, in relationship to ‘why’ I am involved in Beautycounter.

In November, I felt that my why was no longer real.  Didn’t seem real to me, and, if it doesn’t seem real to me, how could it sound real to others?  As I considered that thought, I began to re-word my ‘why’, a portion of it looks like this:
As Ted was retired, we believed that with my income from Beautycounter, we would plan to travel, and live out loud the rest of our lives – however, that plan changed, when he passed away in October of 2013. To say that altered my life, would be an understatement, but to honor his memory, my income with purpose-findyourwhy-v3-300x300Beautycounter is allowing me to pay it forward into areas of giving that Ted held close to his heart, and also give me the opportunity to ‘live our list’,,,

I must confess, when I began to re-work my ‘why’, I had not officially been named the recipient of the Live The List . I was hopeful, but, hadn’t been officially named.  I’m excited to face that challenge, alone, but, not alone, as I know I have the backing of so many widows and widowers who have walked the same path.

I’m also looking forward to 2016 with a new perspective, a new chance to live out loud, pursue my business with passion (re-fired), and continue to discover ‘me’! 59590260a4364acf5ecd5aaa46441117
What about you?  What do you look forward to as 2016 peers down upon us all.
My prayer for you is if you’ve lost your compass,  that you find a new strength, a new purpose, a new hope.

An update on my Scuba Adventure ~ the plan is to begin my lessons soon after the 1st of the year, so – next week!! I’m pretty doggone excited, and am looking forward to you to continue the journey with me!

 

Growing in Grace,
Laura B.
lgbeck59@gmail.com
Join the Counter Revolution!

 

Living it out, step by step ~ Part One

Do you know me?  Maybe not, maybe you do, maybe you follow my (very sporadic) blog posts.  Over the next few weeks, or, however, long it takes, I’m inviting you to go on a journey with me.

In October of 2013, my beloved went home to be with the Lord.  For about a year prior to his passing, we began to dream big, and decided to live large, as our children had all made it to adult-hood.  One of the big plans/dreams was to take scuba diving lessons, become certified, and dive in exotic places around the world.  Sadly, that did not materialize.   I gave up on living live out loud.  Or, at least, on those things we were going to do ‘together’.  As a matter of fact, one friend encouraged me to still dive, and I said, no – I didn’t even want to do that anymore.

I would have to say, about a year and a half into my ‘new normal’ journey, I stumbled upon a facebook page entitled One Fit Widow.  Her story of loss, but, more importantly, her desire to live, and to live out loud,  was simply inspiring for me.  She is truly, in my mind, a super-hero.

That is the back-story to where I find myself today. One of the facets of Michelle’s life is the building of a not-for-profit organization, called Live the List.  Michelle’s passion, along with her husband Keith (chapter 2, isn’t that amazing to be doubly blessed?), want to see widows and widowers live out the passions that they were unable to do because of the death of their spouse.

The Wednesday prior to Thanksgiving, I applied.  I thought, I can’t lose, right?  I reached out to the Aqua-Hut to determine the cost of classes, etc.  It was soon after the first of the month that I saw this on Facebook:
fbscreenMan!  Did I feel honored that Michelle was posting about ‘me’.  I wanted to burst, so I did.  into tears!
On December 8th, I posted this on my Instagram, and Facebook: It was a couple of hours later that I received an email from Live the List that I had been selected!  So, yeoceans, I burst out in tears.   You probably are getting a pattern here!
Tears.  I read the email to my son, as I cried.
When I think about this, I continue to cry.  I am truly humbled and blessed beyond measure that I was chosen for this truly memorable gift!

Last night, I couldn’t sleep – as I scrolled Facebook, I ran across this post on the One Fit Widow Facebook Page:

Tonight I want to tell you a love story.

In the photo below is a beautiful couple who shared a lifetime together. This is Ted and Laura and they first met 12/31/1977 when they were snowed in for 5 days STRAIGHT at Laura’s sisters house during the blizzard of 78.

Talk about fate and timing!

For 35 plus years and 6 children – Laura loved Ted and Ted loved Laura.

Ted dreamed of taking scuba diving lessons when he recovered and received a liver transplant. Unfortunately Ted never got the chance to make this dream come true.onefitwidowpic

Laura has come to Live The List Nonprofit to help her complete this wish of Ted’s. She has decided it will help her move forward boldly with her own personal future all while honoring a man who gave her all of him.

That’s what our nonprofit wants to offer. You see, by fulfilling dreams they had for their future in many ways we decide to keep living our future. That’s what I personally learned when I started living Mitch’s list and I love that other widowers are able to have that incredible feeling too. Many widows don’t have the financial resources to have these simple moments of pure happiness because the difficult situations they were left in leave them strapped. No time to think of themselves and their wishes for the future. We want to grant as many wishes as possible because we believe it makes a difference in many lives.

Laura, I can’t wait to see the photos from your dive and I’m so glad our nonprofit was able to help you live this dream for Ted but also for YOU.

By December 31st our goal is to raise $10,000 for our baby nonprofit. We have currently raised about $2000. We are a 501c3 organization which means some or all of your donation is tax deductible. If everyone just gave $20 tonight we’d long surpass our goal and be able to help countless widows/widowers.

Can you help us help others Live the List?

Thank you from the bottom of my heart for any shares or donations. We can’t do it without you.

Good night world – together we can make a difference,

Michelle

Guess what happened??? I cried my eyes out!!

With that, I’ll wrap up post #1.  I would love to see you follow my journey!
You can simply subscribe to my blog for updates!

Growing in Grace,
Laura B.
lgbeck59@gmail.com

 

 

 

I’m sick of cancer.

I’m sick of knowing a very dear friend is battling this awful sentence.
I’m sick of knowing that as I type this, my very dear friend, Barb, is at a Home Going service for a friend of hers who lost the battle.
I’m sick of reading on Facebook that a friend from high school just found out she has breast cancer.  To then read a comment, ‘that is the most curable kinds of cancer’.  Fantastic.
I’m sick of the FACT that 1:2 MEN – MEN – did you read that men?? Raise your hand with the fellow next to you.  ONE of you will get cancer.
I’m sick of the fact that 1:3 Women will get cancer.  With 1:8 of those women getting breast cancer, while only 10% of those are genetically pre-disposed to it.

1938BLACK
I’m sick of autoimmune issues.
I’m sick of children being born with 200 toxic chemicals in their cord blood.
I’m sick of parents being told that their newborns’ cleft lip was caused by environmental hazards.
I’m sick of parents having to lose their children from incurable childhood diseases.
I’m sick of living in a nation with the first generation of children will live sicker and die younger then ANY OTHER generation before us.

I’m sick of an eight BILLION dollar industry in this nation to be virtually unregulated.  The regulation that stands, and governs this industry, is roughly 300 pages long with 1.5 pages governing this ENTIRE industry. As a result, the personal care manufacturers can, and DO put anything in their personal care products, and can get away with calling it ‘natural’ and/or ‘organic’ with close to zero of either, or let’s consider what natural and organic can mean.  Poison Ivy Oil is both.  I can guarantee you that you do not want it in my shampoo.

2015-03-20 09.15.41 I’m sick of stores targeting our young girls with products that contain cancer causing, hormone disrupting ingredients that attribute to early-onset puberty.  Sick of other manufacturers targeting our young men with the same sort of ingredients, causing the same sort of issues.

Yet, among all of this darkness, among all of these terrible, awful, nasty FACTS, the truth and the light is beginning to shine.

About a decade ago, a beautiful woman, Heather White, started a data-base within her not-for-profit organization, Environmental Working Group. The data base, Skin Deep is what I began to use during my soapy days.  It changed the way I looked at ingredients, formulas and products.  I went against the traditional soap/lotion methods, creating products that were safe(er) then what I had made previously, and took a lot of static from others’ in the ‘at home’ soap makers.

Thankful that my passion for creating, led me to becoming part of a movement and a change.  Thankful to have linked arms with women and men all across the nation that believe in, and are moving forward with CHANGE.  Thankful that American Citizens are beginning to wake up to the toxic burden personal care products have on us.  Thankful to Gregg Renfrew for having a burden for our skin health, and is moving on Capitol Hill to make our law-makers aware that this industry NEEDS regulation.

It’s time for a change.  Will you link arms with us, and counter the culture in relationship to the Personal Care Industry?
One last thing ~ Please take 15 minutes and watch this video.  It’s completely worth your time.

I look forward to hearing from you!

Growing in Grace ~
Laura B.
lgbeck59@gmail.com
Join the Revolution ~ The (Beauty) Counter Revolution

 

Time to Win ~ Countertime give-away!

Who doesn’t LOVE to win?  Here’s your chance to win a sample set of Beautycounter’s anti-aging line ~ Countertime!
20150221_092447 I would LOVE to send you a sample! Gives you the opportunity to test-drive it, and have a nice addition for your travel needs!

A sample of the Mercedes of skin-care.
A sample that will leave your face hydrated and glowing.
(Now, what woman doesn’t want that?)
A sample of a marine and botanically based anti-aging system.
A sample with proven results, driven by ‘real’ people results, and scientific measurements – for example – 100% of women showed a significant increase in skin hydration.
From a company that carries the most amazing lip sheers around ~ lead free at that!
A company that is committed to NO toxins in your  skin care ~
A company that delivers on it’s promise ~ making  sure you KNOW EVERYTHING about what is in your skin care ~ from your kids’ shampoo to your shave cream, eye cream, body wash, YOUR shampoo, and the most devine hydrate body lotion.  lips

Beautycounters commitment is to progress, not perfection.  We will continually strive to make sure your skin care is safe, checking and re-checking industry standards; checking and re-checking the formulations; checking and re-checking your products before they come to your front door.

How, you may ask, do you enter to WIN the Countertime sample? Simply place an order in any amount via the link on my page LAURA’S BEAUTYCOUNTER. Use the shop tab: – Blog give away when making your purchase, and you will automatically be entered to win.

No surveys to fill out, you don’t have to tweet, pin, blog, post or anything. Of course, feel FREE to share all around! #bloggiveaway. However, you only have until 2/28 to be entered~ Happy shopping!
cscbc

Growing in Grace ~
Laura B.
lgbeck59@gmail.com
Join the Revolution ~ the Counter Revolution!

Do you wonder why I do what I do ~

perhaps todays’ blog will help.

I recently ran across this article. It starts with this, and I quote: “The number of (largely untested) chemicals in our environment is  on the rise, as are the rates of autism, cancer, and other serious health problems affecting kids. KIWI investigates
 this “silent pandemic”—and reveals how parents can fight back.”

Even before I joined Beautycounter, I was on a mission to provide the safest, possible body care to my family. I made everything from a bar of soap to a bottle of shampoo.  This was no easy task – not with the majority of six children in the house which we home educated, and a husband who worked two jobs! But, I did it.  I enjoyed learning more and more about what I was making, and then my brain began to shift.  The more I learned, the more I realized I didn’t know a THING!  What I had believed about adding synthetic fragrances to my products wasn’t true – there is no such thing as a ‘wash off’ ingredient.  Also, realizing that beyond where I purchased my ingredients, their sourcing was equally as important.

With that, I simply did not have the expertise or time to run down the sourcing of every ingredient.  What I mean by that is, perhaps I chose to use an essential oil in my soap instead of synthetic fragrances? (true) – how would I know if the way that essential oil was processed was chemically, distilled, or expressed?  I wouldn’t.

Enter Beautycounter.  I was introduced to them just days before they officially launched, early March 2013.  I truly liked what they had to say, in particular to their commitment to making sure that they were using only SAFE ingredients.

Back to the point ~ this article so very clearly explains why I do what I do – WHY I so strongly believe in SAFE skin care practices.  Some facts:

*babies are born with +200 TOXIC chemicals in their cord blood
* as the rate of environmental toxins has risen, so has the rate of diseases: cancer, ADD, Auto-immune disorders,   early puberty, depression, and the list goes on.
*Out of 12,000 ingredients used in personal care products, only 80% have been tested for safety.
*ingredients in personal care products are known to disrupt your hormones, cause skin irritations, are toxic to your immune system and organs, (the list goes on)
* It is LEGAL for the personal care industry to put known carcinogens in products marketed to pregnant women and children.
* that sun-block you are using? Check the ingredients.

And yet, we risk our health and that of our families every single day of the year.  When we (collectively) become educated on something we have the power within our hands to make changes, or not.  Even if it is a small change.   Yes, I completely understand the balance between paycheck and purchase.  I also understand comparative shopping. But, my question is this – let’s say (we will talk about our children) you choose Beautycounter’s Kids Wash, aren’t you beginning to make a SMALL step towards making sure they are protected? One choice is one choice closer to doing one more thing for their health.  Will it stop your child from getting certain diseases? No.  Will it help in protecting them as much as you can? Yes.  One small change can lead to so many other changes.

Comparing dollars – okay I get it.  The price you pay at the supercenter for a very popular kids was is under $5.  Said popular kids product does not believe in truth about it’s ingredients.  I just did a quick search of a site, their baby powder has talc (look that one up) and fragrance – i.e., synthetic fragrance – not good for you. at. all. (though, by food standards, an apple needs to be an apple, and if says organic, by george, it better be such!)

So, WHY do I do what I do? Because YOU the consumer has the RIGHT TO KNOW what is in your skin care, and whaforblogbutton1t the impact of the ingredients has on your health.  At Beautycounter we are committed to that ~ you, KNOWING EVERYTHING!  We also realize that, while it would be great if every household stocked Beautycounter, it isn’t realistic.  However, it is realistic to believe that someday the Federal Laws will change so that you WILL KNOW Everything.

Federal law changes, partnering with Trusted-non profits, insuring SAFE ingredients, those are the standards on which Beautycounter was founded.  We believe in putting PEOPLE first ~ then planet, then profits.  Know everything – So, if you ever think I sound soap-boxy, or beating the same drum over and over again, please know it is because I CARE about your health.

Concerned? You should be!  Your skin is your26seconds largest organ which absorbs 60% of what you put on it in under 26 seconds.   Even a small change makes a huge difference.

As always,
Growing in Grace ~
Laura B.
lgbeck59@gmail.com
It’s time for a change ~ join the Revolution
http://laurabeck.beautycounter.com

 

Holy Week ~

As we approach perhaps the most eventful day on the calendar in all of Christendom, I am struck with some thoughts.

Yesterday’s sermon was relevant and to the point for Christians, timelesstruthsyet there are timeless truths found within it that can apply to anyone of any faith.  Just five small things that you can do. Take just five days to start.

A small caveat ~ King David plucked five smooth stones from the brook and with them slayed a giant, and conquered a nation. (I Sam. 17:40). What giant is facing you, and with these five small principles can be slain?

1) Monday ~ A prayer of Thanksgiving for ten things.  Surely, you have ten things for which you are thankful?

2) Tuesday ~ Two for Tuesday. Compassion. Find two people you can serve.  Just two ~ in any way.  Can you take your neighbor a meal, offer to drive them to the store, pay a bill for someone in need?

3) Wednesday ~ Evaluate and Value. Think of five things that you value.  Then, consider, are they valuable to God?

4) Thursday ~ Spiritual Connection. Spend extra time alone in prayer/meditation/worship today.

5) Friday ~ Reconciliation. Do you need to forgive someone? Is there someone from whom you need to seek forgiveness?

We all have our struggles.  For some spending time alone in prayer or meditation may be where your struggle is, or being thankful?

When we look at these, and if we consider the last week of Christ on earth – they all mirror his week.  His prayer was not for Himself – even when he begged of the Father to remove the cup from Him, Christ was content to go to the Cross.

He was compassionate.  In the garden, he healed the soldier’s ear after it was whacked off by Peter.

His sweat turned to blood as He prayed for us that Friday night.

He carried our burdens to the cross so we could experience that reconciliation between us and God.

Whether you agree with my position on Christ or not really isn’t the point of today’s blog. No matter where you are on life’s journey, I would think you can identify somewhere with at least one of the points made above.

Please take 6 minutes out of your day to watch listen to this song. (My apologies on the ad)

The Stand

Have a blessed week.

Growing in Grace,
Laura B.
lgbeck59@gmail.com
Join the movement ~ changing the face of skin care; one person at a time!