Author Archive | Drew Potter

Helping developing children develop healthy emotions

Every parent that I have met, or currently know, has a desire to help their child grow to be happy, healthy and successful. A huge part of ensuring that this happen is understanding how to help our children to grow into strong, independent, emotionally available and balanced human beings.

This can be a challenge, especially because so many of us have had to figure it out on our own. It’s not like our parents meant to not teach us what this looks like, but as humanity evolves, each generation has its own needs. Keeping up to date on what the needs of these new generations are can be challenging and one heck of a daunting task.

Helping your child to develop into the best version of themselves is not about letting them run the show or keeping them under our thumbs as much as it is about letting them make their own mistakes and opening lines of communication to help them understand what making different and, hopefully, better decisions can do for them as they navigate life through childhood, adolescence and then, finally, adulthood.

Here are some tips from Steven Stozny, PhD, author of may books and columns on the subject of compassionate parenting (his tips will be in bold):

  • Listen to your children. Learning how to clearly and effectively communicate our needs, wants, and boundaries can create for a very different experience in every phase of maturation.
  • Let solutions to their problems come from the children. Particularly as children begin to mature, learning to make decisions about how to solve the challenges that they face will be a useful tool. Some will argue that the mind that creates a problem can’t typically fix it, but this is, again, where being able to communicate can help for troubleshooting and problem-solving skills in your child
  • Respond to positive emotions as well as negative. One of the beautiful things about being human is that we have the ability to access a full range of emotions. Every one of them has a purpose and it is important to recognize positive emotions as well as the negative in order to reinforce the full range. Emotions are important, it is what we do with them and how we express them that make them good or bad.
  • Openly express affection to your children and to other adults in the family. Enjoy teaching them about healthy expressions of affection and consent. This goes back to the very root of developing healthy boundaries and, in turn, healthy relationships.
  • Learn from them. The juvenile and adolescent brain works differently than the adult brain because it is still a developing place of wonder and amazement. What can we learn from encouraging child-like curiosity in the lives of our children and , maybe, even ourselves!
  • Discipline does not mean punishment. Discipline teaches us to make our beds and do our laundry. It teaches us work ethic and healthy eating habits. Instilling discipline is not about punishment, it’s about fostering success.

For more information on how to foster resourcefulness, responsibility, respect, impulse control, relationship investment, and optimism, feel free to check out more from Dr Stozny at Psychology today in these two links:

Compassionate Parenting

Do’s and Don’ts of Compassionate Parenting

Be well. Be happy. Be love!


Healthy Summer Fun!

It may have felt like it would never show up, but Summer is upon us!

What that means for us is long days at the beach, hikes in the mountains, family get-togethers, outdoor parties and plenty of fun and sun. On the other side of that, summer can also mean dehydration, sunburn and bug bites. We, at Nest Organics, want to make sure that you are fully armed with everything that you need to make sure that this summer is the best and most fun summer yet! So, here are some tips:

Fruits & Veggies: The ultimate protectors

Make sure that your nutritional practice is balanced and well-rounded. A good general rule-of-thumb is to make sure that every day you are eating fruits and veggies of every color. ROY G. BIV!

Eating raw fruits and veggies is the healthiest and most fun way to make sure that you and your family are getting all of the vitamins, nutrients, minerals and antioxidants to ensure a fun, illness free summer. Instead of grabbing snack packs of chips at the store for family outings, try chopping up some bell peppers and mixing them in with a handful of cherry tomatoes. Not only will you be getting a a full spectrum of nutritional awesomeness but the water content of these happens to be a bit higher so you are creating less of an opportunity for dehydration to sneak up on you. If you are going to be active and need a little extra protein, try bringing a some delicious spinach or dark leafy greens to nibble. PlanetBox makes awesome carrying containers for a little getaway — and it just so happens that you can get them, or any of our other favorite stainless steel carry boxes on our website or in the store.

A couple more tips on fruits and vegetables:

  • Buy local and seasonal – farmers markets are an excellent option
  • Consider food delivery services that will deliver produce boxes to your house as often as you choose, such as Mother Earth Produce
  • Instead of getting dried, dehydrated foods that are high in sugar, consider frozen fruits as a snack option
  • Know this year’s DIRTY DOZEN and definitely buy these items organic
  • Be familiar with the CLEAN 15 and incorporate them into your nutritional practice

Cool Tips to Keeping Hydrated

Dehydration is no joke and can cause lethargy, headaches, nausea and other primary symptoms. More importantly, it can become life threatening with physical maladies like heat stroke. Make sure to stay hydrated. If you have an active family , make sure that you are getting enough electrolytes. Skip the Gatorade and learn how to make Sole (Soh-lay), which is typically made with a blend of pink Himalayan sea salt and distilled or purified water.

Pink Himalayan sea salt boasts 84 – yes, 84! – essential nutrients and minerals that have a full range of effects, depending on how it is administered. Sole is great for electrolytes, detoxification and actually gives the drinker energy. We love to get ours from Asheville Salt Cave. Sole is easy to make and it’s a fun science experiment to do with the kids.

Now, what to keep all this water in?

Have you joined the stainless steel water bottle revolution yet? The Nest Organics family believes in health and hydration and has been through so many water bottles that never made the cut. If you haven’t tried a stainless steel water bottle, we highly recommend them. We have some single walled (from PanetBox) for your every day needs.

So, some additional tips to stay hydrated:

  • Take your body weight and divide it in half. This number is what most experts currently believe you should be drinking in ounces of water a day. This may be more if you are active, have a high salt diet, or drink caffeine. Do your best and tune in to your body. It will tell you what it needs.
  • ALWAYS have a water bottle with you. In high summer heats, dehydration can happen fast.
  • Avoid plastic water bottles that you buy at the grocery store. They are not refillable as the plastic breaks down over time, especially in the heat, and your body will absorb the petroleum compounds used to make plastic. Plus, they’re bad for the environment!
  • Drink before you feel thirsty. By time you feel thirsty, your body is already missing water. Also, drink water before you eat. Sometimes we mistake hunger for thirst.
  • If you like to work out or do crazy strenuous stuff outdoors, do it earlier in the day or later in the afternoon. 3 PM is the hottest part of the day when the sun is the most intense.

Summer Sun Protection

Most of us have had the experience of sunburn. It’s uncomfortable and, frankly, not too cute. Aside from the fact that consistent, unprotected sun exposure can make your skin wrinkly and accelerate the aging process of your skin, consistent sunburn can have long term effects like sun poisoning and skin cancer. In the short term, aside from the itchiness and pealing skin, sunburn actually keeps a person from being able to sweat properly which leads to things like sun stroke.

If you are going to be out of doors, keep these things in mind:

  • Wear sunscreen! Nest Organics has offers really awesome organic sunscreen lotions for adults, kids and babies. It’s typically best to apply about 20 minutes before you go out into the sun and, if you are active or swimming, reapply any time you wipe your skin with a rag or come out of the water.
  • If you’re going to be in the sun a lot, consider a hat.
  • Remember to protect the kids in your life. Kids tend to be more fair complected and easier to overexpose to sun. Help them get a good start by ensuring that their skin is well-protected.



Sun Protection.


You got this!

Have a great summer and let us know how we can help!

Nest Organics


All Hail, Buckwheat Pillows!

Would you be open to having some real talk for a moment? When is the last time that you though about a piece of comfort that you have become accustomed to having, cuddling, and leaning on? When is the last time that you thought about your pillow?

Let’s start with the more palatable part of the conversation – some simple ergonomics. You rely on our pillows to keep alignment in our spine while  you sleep at night (or during the day, if you’re lucky enough to get to nap). It can be the difference between waking up rested or waking up feeling miserable.

It can be heard to tell when it is time to get a new pillow so, here are some simple tests for you. One of the easiest ways to tell if it is time to get a new pillow is to fold it in half. If it springs back to normal, then you’re good. If it stays collapsed or takes a while to re-open, you definitely are going to need to replace it. Do you remember where your pillow came from? If not, it’s definitely time to replace. How does your neck feel when you wake up? Are you feeling stiff or sore? How do your sinuses feel when you wake up? Are you stuffy, scratchy, wheezy, or sniffly? It could be your pillow.

Speaking of which, did you know that after 2 years of owning a traditional pillow that it can double in weight from mold, fungus, and dust mites? As a matter of fact, after only one year of owning a pillow, 10 – 15% of your pillows weight can be attributed to mold and dust mites (we won’t even talk about what the mites are leaving behind – yuck!) Washing your pillow once a week in hot water is a temporary solution to prolong dust mite-free factor but even pillow cases can’t help for the long haul. Pillow cases are only a band aid on a much larger problem.

There’s no need to fret, though! There is an answer! Enter, Buckwheat Pillows!

There are so many benefits to having a buckwheat pillow that it almost seems like a no-brainer to make the switch – even if it is just one pillow at a time!

People that have made the switch to buckwheat pillows have said that they sleep better because of the way that the pillows shape to your needs when you move at night. They say that they smell better, they stay cooler, and, OH YEAH! they are naturally dust mite resistant!

When I add up all of those things, they sound like a much better night of sleep to me. For more info, check out this companion article Traditional Pillows Vs. Buckwheat Pillows – 18 Reasons To Switch.

Then, come on in, give us a call, or check out our organic cotton pillowcases, organic buckwheat hulls, and prefabricated organic buckwheat pillows. I’m sure that making the switch would not be a decision that you would regret!

Rest well to be well!



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