Introducing SFR Rewards

Here’s what you have to look forward to when you join Smith Family Resources’ Rewards program:

~ FREE SHIPPING ALL YEAR!

Products will be shipped to any US address absolutely free of charge all year!

~ 10% OFF ONE PRODUCT OF YOUR CHOICE.

This discount is in addition to sale prices and quantity discounts and is unlimited for one year. Product must be chosen when joining and may not be changed until Rewards renewal.

~ ONE FREE GIFT WITH EVERY ORDER.

Surprise! Expect a little something extra with every order!

Within 24 hours of your payment for SFR Rewards, you will receive an introductory email with your unique coupon code. Enter this code each time you order to receive free shipping and 10% off your selected product. If you are a local customer and wish to arrange for free local pickup or delivery, please place your order by phone or email to receive your Rewards discount.

Membership in SFR Rewards begins immediately and continues for one calendar year.
Example: Join on December 12, 2017, and enjoy benefits through December 12, 2018.

SFR Rewards

Small Business Saturday

Smith Family Resources Small Business Saturday town

When you shop this weekend, please remember to shop small!
We’d especially love it if you would shop our small home-based business!
Click here to check out this weekend’s specials and sales.

If you want to save even more, email us or message us on Facebook and ask for a Small Business Saturday gift. We’ll reply with a coupon code for 10% off any purchase through Monday, Nov. 28.

Thank you for shopping small!

Smith Family Resources Small Business Saturday heart

Family Business

Blogging about our beginning led me to reflect on how our business has impacted our family.

Before we were officially launched, we decided to involve our children as much as possible.  They listened in on phone calls with city hall while we were learning about business licenses and sales taxes. They watched us count the cost of inventory and office supplies and shipping materials and website subscriptions. They helped us with proofreading and organizing and planning.

The whole family has been involved in every aspect of the business including purchasing inventory, advertising, selling, preparing orders for shipment, remitting sales taxes, and renewing business licenses. Two of our children earned school credit for Business Math and General Business. One is presently working on credits for Entrepreneurship and Career Preparedness. Some have been more involved than others, but it has been educational for all.

And I don’t see how there can be any better place than Helena to operate a family business. The other business owners in this town have welcomed and supported us and have been an important part of our children’s education and work experience. My son started attending Helena Business Association meetings with me when he was an elementary student, and all of our children have helped at First Fridays. Helena is an awesome place to live and raise a family- and to own a family business.

So has owning a business been good for our family? Absolutely! It’s obviously a blessing to have access to great health supplements, and the income from providing supplements for others is a good thing, too. But it’s been really great to be able to introduce our children to the real world of small business with a real business.

Thank you, friends, for making all of this possible for our family!

First Friday July
Melissa and Matthew at Helena First Friday, July 2014

 

Beginning

Day two of the November Post Challenge, and here goes my first post!

I’d like to share the story of the beginning of our family business.

A long time ago, when we had five children 9 and younger and I was definitely NOT feeling like SuperMom, I saw a Beeyoutiful ad for SuperMom multivitamins in a homeschool magazine. I had taken other vitamins over the years and had never noticed any change in my energy level or overall health. I decided to give Beeyoutiful a try.

By the time I got to the bottom of the bottle (about 8 weeks), I noticed a big difference in the way I felt. I had more energy, less sleepiness in the late afternoon, and my iron level began to improve. After that, we tried other products from Beeyoutiful: Tummy Tuneup (probiotic), SuperDad and SuperKids. Then we discovered Miracle Skin Salve. We loved every product we tried.

We told our friends, and pretty soon, we were ordering products for friends every time we ordered for ourselves. After several years of gathering group orders, we decided to take the plunge and start our own business. We’re not much bigger than we were at our small beginning, but it’s still kind of a dream come true. I get to manage a business while staying at home with my family and providing a useful service for other people as well.

small business dream

I’m a day behind on the post challenge. I don’t know if I’ll double up or run behind or combine some themes in the next few days, but I love having some themes for inspiration. Let me know if you’re taking the challenge, too!

November Post Challenge

November Post Challenge final

This blog has been heavy on the health side lately. I suppose that’s understandable since the stated purpose of the blog is to share our health discoveries! Still, I want this site to be more than a journal of health issues and a series of supplement suggestions! Nutrition and supplementation are important, but there’s more to an overall healthy life.

So, I’m challenging myself to blog outside the box next month. I’ve compiled a list of 30 themes, one for each day of the month, and, no, I haven’t planned any posts ahead of time! This really will be a challenge!

Will you do this with me? Wherever you post, whether it’s your own blog, your Facebook page or an Instagram account, will you let these themes inspire you, too? Please let me know if you’re accepting the challenge! I’d love to include some of your posts here.

No rules, no gimmicks! Just write or draw or take pictures- whatever you do best- and post it. I can’t wait to see your ideas!

How do you feel?

After seven years of baby steps, I’ve finally started making leaps and bounds in the health department. I’m genuinely shocked at how much better I feel.

  • NO JOINT PAIN – I can now run 2 miles without stopping to stretch. A year ago, I couldn’t walk even half a mile without experiencing pain and swelling in my knees.
  • NO ABDOMINAL PAIN – I haven’t felt even a twinge of that perpetual right-side ache since I gave up the baby steps and started really working on improving my health.
  • BETTER SLEEP – I fall asleep within minutes and typically wake only once or twice during the night- and I go right back to sleep. THIS IS HUGE! I have never slept well, so I really do feel like a new woman! As in, is this really me??

So, how do you feel? If you want to talk about making your own leaps and bounds or even taking your first baby steps, I’d love to hear from you. Comment or email me. I would love to encourage you as you make your move toward feeling better. I’m not a health coach. But maybe I’m a health cheerleader!

Back to Bone Ami

I never realized how difficult it is to get the necessary Vitamin D, calcium and magnesium in food! After a month of keeping a food diary and tracking my nutrients on Cronometer, it has beome apparent that even my healthier diet with 6-9 cups of fruits and vegetables every day is not supplying what I need for bone health.

So, I’m turning to an old supplement friend, Bone Ami. This time, I’m choosing the liquid version which supplies 400 IU of vitamin D, 500 mg of calcium, and 250 mg of magnesium in every dose. The liquid form is more readily absorbed, and, in case you’re wondering, it tastes really good! I still have to make good food choices to reach my target goals for these nutrients, but the goal is now possible, thanks to Bone Ami.

My next bone density scan should happen in October 2018. I lost ground from 2012 to 2014 and barely maintained from 2014 to 2016. I’ve been told that women in my demographic can’t gain bone density, that we just have to work hard to keep from losing. Maybe that’s true- but what if it’s not? I’m giving my bones my best shot. I’m eating well, nourishing them from within, and I’m exercising, strengthening them from without. And now I’m giving them a little extra help from Bone Ami.

So, friends, is it possible? Have any of you actually gained bone density? Have any of your Bone Densitometry reports ever shown improvement? I would love to hear some success stories!

Bone Ami Liquid 2

Click here to learn more about Bone Ami.

Running

I did some running when I was in my 20’s. I wasn’t very fast, but I enjoyed it and it was good exercise.

I took a break from running when my children were young and then started again when they began running cross country. I found out some things had changed over that break, most notably, my knees. X-rays confirmed arthritis in both knees, and I was advised to give up running. I learned from a chiropractor that strengthening the muscles in my legs would help to support my knees, but I filed that information in the back of my mind and settled for occasional walks.

Fast forward to three years ago. Osteopenia finally woke me up to the need to exercise and I began a regimen of weight-bearing and muscle-strengthening exercises. Even though I had given up running, I walked in some 5K races in the area. My goal was twofold but simple: to finish in under an hour and not to be the last person to cross the finish line! My time was usually between 55 and 59 minutes, and I usually spent the rest of the day with legs elevated, icing my inflamed knees.

But every now and then, I dreamed that I was running. In my dreams, I had found a way to run without touching the ground! I described those dreams to a Trak Shak salesperson who recommended a Hoka running shoe for me.  Walking in Hokas has been the next best thing to running without touching the ground.

With three years of exercise behind me and Hoka shoes to support me, I started running again. In June, I walked/ran 3.1 miles (5K) in my neighborhood and finished in 47 minutes- not great, but almost nine minutes faster than my fastest walking 5K.

Is it possible that my recently improved diet could already be strengthening my muscles and joints? I’m able to run almost a mile without pain now, and my current 5K PR in the neighborhood is 44:33. I’m still slow compared to almost everyone else I encounter on the trail, but I have a new twofold goal now: to run as much as I can without causing injury and to run without concern about others being faster.

What about you? Do you run for exercise? What are your goals? Tell me what motivates you to keep moving. And tell me about your shoes!

Melissa and Morgan, Smith Family Resources
Morgan is my post-run encourager!

Doing My Homework

My health coach gave me a pretty easy assignment this week: think about chewing.

Yes, chewing. She gave me a crash course on the digestive system which brought back memories of elementary school, learning about saliva and the esophagus and food’s journey through the miles of intestines. She also gave me a handout with some suggestions- suggestions which have turned out to be easy to read and not so easy to implement.

Do YOU chew every bite 30-50 times before you swallow it? I found out that my average is about 10. I’m now making more of an effort, but I have some work to do.

Why does it matter, you ask? (I’ve been doing some reading, so I’m not sure now what I’ve read and what Rebecca told me. I’ll give all the credit to her unless otherwise noted!) Saliva is alkaline. Alkaline reduces inflammation in the body. Chewing efficiently alkalizes our food before it’s swallowed which prevents inflammation. I guess that explains why eating on the go or “swallowing your food whole,” as my mother used to say I did, usually results in heartburn, indigestion, and/or stomach ache, i.e. inflammation of the gut. Chewing matters more than I realized.

I’m the one who didn’t want to take time to stop for lunch at all, so this is hard! Eating nine cups of fruits and vegetables every day requires more stopping-to-eat than I’m used to, and now I’m adding more chewing to that effort! But I’m already feeling better, so it’s worth it!

Assignment number two was to learn about albumin. I had heard of albumin in connection with eggs, but this time I was seeing the word on some blood work results. My albumin level was low, and Rebecca suggested I find out what it was and why it mattered. Albumen is the white of the egg, but, albumin is “any of numerous simple heat-coagulable water-soluble proteins that occur in blood plasma or serum, muscle, the whites of eggs, milk, and other animal substances and in many plant tissues and fluids,” per Merriam-Webster.

From various medical websites, I learned that albumin is produced by the liver, and it carries substances such as hormones and enzymes throughout the body. If the albumin level is low, it might indicate kidney failure or kidney disease or liver disease. Or it might indicate malnutrition. Well, none of those conditions appeal to me, but malnutrition seems to me to be the easiest one to correct!

My question is, will my nine cups of improved nutrition correct my albumin level? Maybe. Hopefully. According to Registered Dietician Sarah Pflugradt, “increasing the overall quality of the diet may help increase albumin levels in those who are malnourished.” Writing for livestrong.com, she also noted that some recent research indicates that “albumin was not a direct indicator of nutritional health, but rather a marker of the influence of illness on albumin. For instance, inflammation- present in many diseases- causes protein to break down in the body, leading to a decreased albumin.”

Homework results: I hereby promise to make every effort to efficiently chew every bite of nine cups of fruits and vegetables every day, hoping to reduce inflammation and to increase albumin.

Here are a few pictures of some of the delicious and nutrient-rich meals I’ve eaten lately. Recipes don’t seem to be necessary since a picture paints a thousand words, but I’ll be glad to give you the details if you ask.

 

Progress Report

At my first health coaching session, Rebecca gave me some homework: increase my intake of fruits and vegetables to 9 cups a day and start tracking my nutrients.

Background information: I haven’t been eating anywhere close to 9 cups of fruits and vegetables a day. In my last post, I blogged that I had taken the baby step of eating a fruit or vegetable at every meal. Even so, I was eating no more than 1 or 2 cups a day. Nine cups is a BIG baby step!

Rebecca suggested Cronometer, an online tool for tracking nutrition, fitness, and health data. It will track a lot of things, but my focus is on vitamins and nutrients. (There’s a free online version, but I opted for the $3.99 app.)

Cronometer app

Since I started keeping up with my fruit and vegetable intake, I’ve hit the goal once and come very close several days. Even though I’m not consistently meeting my goal yet, I feel better already- more energy, better sleep, and less pain.

I’ve been trying to learn more about nutrition for several years now, but the design of the Cronometer app has helped me to see more clearly what I’m actually getting from my food. I can tell at a glance whether or not I’ve gotten the nutrients needed for the day. That information helps me eat things that will actually nourish me and not just fill me up.

One evening recently, I was going to skip dinner and just eat a bowl of cereal. I searched my intended cereal in the app and discovered that there was almost no nutritional value whatsoever. Even though it’s a gluten-free, organic, supposedly healthy cereal, it would basically be empty calories!

I’ve also been confirmed in my belief in the amazing contribution of SuperMom to my overall health. Here are two screenshots of my breakfast this morning:IMG_9882[1]

IMG_9883[1]

The first is my breakfast before SuperMom. Notice in the bar at the bottom that my nutrient target goal is at 28%. The second screenshot is after taking the SuperMom. Now my nutrient target goal is at 69%. Wow!

Unfortunately, I’ve been relying on SuperMom to make up for the deficits in my diet, and, as super as it is, it just can’t do it all. I can see in my nutrient reports that I’m still not consistently getting enough Vitamin D, Magnesium, or Potassium every day. Those are important nutrients for healthy bones which probably explains why I’ve had issues with arthritis and osteopenia.

So, enough about me! I’m excited about my progress, but my reason for sharing is to encourage you in yours! Please share your own progress in the comments or by email. I’ll be glad to hear from you!