She was a journalist, making her way in the world at a big city newspaper back in England. She's since followed her dream of a doctorate and is buried in research at a big city university, where she's been toiling away for four or five years. I daresay the novels she always dreamed of writing when younger have taken a back seat as motherhood eats into what was once her leisure time. Balancing home and career is an unrelenting juggling act, and that's without consideration for the trials and tribulations that life tosses into your path along the way.
This morning, as I look toward family coming to visit from England next week, I was stuck in a bit of the old memory lane stuff as I looked through the articles under her "Natural Beauty" section. Yes... long gone is the spare time she used to have. But mother's pride never goes "long gone", does it? I've kept it there for all to read. I've kept it there because... well, you do that when you're a mom, don't you? But actually, just between me and you, it's still there because the articles are so informatively great.
Here's one she did on hair for me. You can find all her articles under Natural Beauty on the blue sidebar of the website. Please enjoy the little slice of Mother's pride that I am dining out on right now. Family is a wonderful thing, and I am so fortunate to be blessed the way that I am:
The Hair Apparent, by Gayle Whelan
Your hair is your crowning glory. In perfect condition, it can make many a head turn. But there's no need to spend a fortune on products that promise glossy locks and sleek, shiny hair, as nature has her own less expensive natural products that are fun to use and can give you showstopping results.
There are approximately 100,000 hairs on the average head, which unbeknownst to us, are continually being shed. Each hair can last between three and seven years, and most hair will not grow longer than about three feet long.
If you suffer from dry hair, add a few drops of lavender, bay and sandalwood essential oils to six ounces of warm olive oil. Apply the mixture to hair using a cotton wad and wrap scalp in a warm towel. Leave for around 20 minutes and shampoo your hair as normal. Your hair will be lustrous and deeply conditioned.
Tomatoes, applied in the form of paste, puree or even juice, balance the PH levels in your hair, bringing back its natural color and shine. Massaging mayonnaise into dry hair will help control mild dandruff and leaves you with beautifully glossy hair.
If you're not keen on using harmful chemicals to color your hair, there are some natural alternatives. To lighten your hair, mix water and lemon juice and apply to hair. Leave on while out in the sun, but remember to wash off at the end of the day (and be careful not to get it in your eyes). Similar effects can also be achieved by rinsing hair in cold chamomile tea.
To give brown hair a warmer glow, a cup of tepid espresso onto dry hair and leave on for 15 minutes. After rinsing, hair will be gorgeously sleek. For natural and lovely smelling hairspray, chop a lemon and/or orange and add to a cup of water. Boil rapidly until it reduces by half. Cool, strain, and place in a spray bottle. Use just like hair spray, but store in a refrigerator in between uses.
One good household tip: If you're having a particularly bad hair day and your hair stands up or is flyaway, rub a tumble dryer sheet from your roots to the ends of your hair. Not only will your hair smell fresh and clean, your hair will be tamed.
Also remember that while there are many natural products that help hair gleam from the outside, there's a lot you can eat that will help your hair from the inside out. For good hair health, try wholemeal products such as pasta, brown rice and bread, eggs, vitamin D and C, carrots and always plenty of green vegetables.