Thieves Essential Oil Better Than Bleach And Lysol and more

Thieves Essential Oil Better Than Bleach And Lysol

Thieves Essential Oil Beats Clorox Bleach and Lysol in Cleaning BathroomsI love school. I do. I always have. I’d be in school right now, getting another degree in something if time and money would allow.

But I must say that RE-living school through my children’s projects borders on torture. I straddle that line of trying to be helpful and guide them so they will develop excellent study skills and here-let-me-do-that-so-we-can-just-get-it-done-already.

The latest project in the parade of projects, however, was for the sixth grade science fair. And after the late nights and head scratching and double-sided tape fiascos, it actually proved interesting.

While some kids were sticking wires in potatoes and such, my 11-year-old wanted to focus on germs in dirty bathrooms. Specifically, she wanted to test my beloved essential oils against chemical household cleaners. Yes! I was hooked. I wanted to know, too, just how well Young Living’s Thieves essential oil blend performed when placed side by side against Clorox Bleach and Lysol bathroom cleaner.

We partnered with my daughter’s best friend and her mom (another essential oils user and comrade). So, we found an experiment kit online that was specifically made for growing bacteria and then testing different cleaners to see which was most effective at either killing the bacteria or at least stopping its growth (we weren’t really sure what we would discover).

The Science Experiment: Thieves Essential Oil Blend vs. Bleach and Lysol

Now, please keep in mind that we are working on a sixth grade level here! I am an artistic, English person; you’re not going to find much math or science going on in my brain. :) Stacy—my daughter’s best friend’s mom—was a science major and is far more advanced than I in these areas, though she spends most of her days now taking care of her kids and selling real estate.

My point is, is that I’m sure our scientific method would not hold up to the scrutiny of professionals. But for sixth grade, general common sense, and anecdotal evidence, we think we proved some interesting points.

So, the girls’ hypothesis was that Thieves essential oil blend would best inhibit bathroom bacterial growth. Of course, Stacy and I wanted this to be the case. I wasn’t so sure. I honestly thought the bleach would simply obliterate everything in its path, marking it a clear winner.

Stacy made the petri dishes for us by heating and then pouring agar into the dishes. She then allowed them to set up. To further prove my novice status, I will tell you that I didn’t even know what agar was until about a month ago. That’s right. If I ever used it in school, I had no idea what it was called.

Next, the girls took sterilized swabs and rubbed them over several bathroom surfaces—sink, counter, floor. They then rubbed them in a zigzag pattern into four separate petri dishes. They labeled one “Control” and did nothing more to it. Then, they took four separate squares of blotter paper. They saturated one with Clorox bleach, one with Lysol bathroom cleaner, and one with Thieves essential oil blend. They put one square into each of the remaining petri dishes and labeled them accordingly.

The girls put the petri dishes into an insulated, zippered lunch bag and put it into a dark closet to grow. We checked it every few days and charted the bacterial growth.

The hardest part of the entire experiment was figuring out exactly how to measure our observations. We finally decided we would measure in inches the distance between the outer edge of the treated blotter paper and the innermost edge of the bacterial growth.


So the early leader was the Clorox bleach. The first four days, we noticed no growth in its petri dish. The Thieves was a close second with a defined edge around the blotter paper. The Lysol did not seem effective much at all. We noticed growth in its petri dish closer in to the blotter paper.

And then something sort of unexpected happened. On the fifth day, we checked the dishes again. More bacterial growth appeared in the Clorox and Lysol dishes, but there was no change in the Thieves dish at all! Thieves was holding back the growth—keeping it at bay. (The girls posted the chart below on their science board. It shows the different measurements on the different days.)

Thieves Essential Oil Is Better Cleaner Than Clorox Bleach and Lysol

The Conclusion: Thieves Wins!

We concluded, actually, that the hypothesis was correct. Thieves essential oil blend is the best at inhibiting bathroom bacterial growth.

Here’s what the girls posted on their board and in their log books:

My hypothesis was correct. On Day 5, Thieves essential oil blend cleared 5/8 inch diameter around the treated blotter paper. Lysol cleared 2/8 inch diameter around the treated blotter paper. Clorox cleared ½ inch diameter around the treated blotter paper. No new bacterial colonies grew in the dish with Thieves. The Lysol dish had some more bacterial colonies grown but not within the cleared perimeter. The Clorox dish had many new bacterial colonies to grow over night. We proved that Thieves essential oil blend best inhibited bacterial growth on a bathroom surface.

In my own words, I’d put it this way: Clorox bleach is probably best at suppressing bathroom bacterial growth on contact, but it doesn’t necessarily keep working. Thieves does keep the bacteria from growing and/or encroaching into treated territory on a longer-term basis. And Lysol? It’s pretty much useless.

Oh, and we the girls won 2nd place in the science fair! :-)

Disclosure: I am not a medical doctor. Any statements made on this blog about essential oil use are not meant to treat, diagnose, or cure any condition. My statements about essential oils are my opinion and are based upon my own experiences and research.

I occasionally feature affiliate links in my blog posts. Should you follow my link and make a purchase or join a membership website, I will be compensated for my referral.

Thieves Essential Oil Better Than Bleach And Lysol is a post from: Mary Bernard


What Lies Do You Believe?

truth lies single woman lies

Have you ever given much thought about the power that lies have in your life?

Maybe it’s that persistent thought that, “I’m just not good enough.” Or what about the idea that surely God’s forgotten about you or that your past can’t be forgiven.

Sometimes the lies become so loud and so frequent that we start to actually believe them. That’s when we must offset lies by turning to God’s Word for truth. It’s this battle that is the subject of a new book by my friend, Allison Flexer.

Truth, Lies, and the Single Woman (Beacon Hill Press) is targeted at Christian women who long to be married and have children but who remain single.

I know I’m an unlikely reader for Allison’s book, but I wanted to read it because she’s a dear friend, a sincere and devoted woman of faith, and super-smart. I knew it would be a good read, even if most of it was not “on point” for me (I’ve been married since I was 24—19 years—and have 3 kids).

So, I opened the book on my Kindle as I was going to bed the other evening. Honestly, I thought, “It’s late. I’ll just skim this, get the gist, and take away the highlights. I really need to go to bed.”

But guess what? I couldn’t put it down! I’d conclude one chapter and flip the page, only to be sucked in again. Allison’s writing is so thorough and compelling. She writes from a solidly biblical perspective, offering a real feast of God’s truth, goodness, and encouragement. The best part is that no matter where you find yourself on the relationship spectrum—single, married, engaged, widowed, divorced—you can relate to Allison’s story. I firmly believe this book will resonate with everyone in some significant and meaningful way.


Allison graciously agreed to spend a few minutes answering my questions about the book and the writing process.

I hope you enjoy learning more about this book and getting to know Allison.

Q&A With Author Allison Flexer Allison

Allison K. Flexer is an author, speaker, and blogger who is passionate about communicating the love of God to others. Her first book, Truth, Lies, and the Single Woman (Beacon Hill Press), tells the story of her single journey and gives practical steps for letting go of the lies that destroy the joy and confidence of unmarried women. Allison was also a contributing writer for Fulfilled: The NIV Devotional Bible for the Single Woman. You can connect with Allison on her website at or on Twitter: @allisonkflex.

Q1. I suppose you could have gone in a hundred different directions with a book about being a single Christian woman, but I really appreciate your taking the lie/truth approach. Why did you feel compelled to write from this perspective? 

Actually, I didn’t start out writing from that perspective. In the early stages of this project, I started writing a book about advice that women of the Bible might give to single women today. As I wrote, God kept bringing up the topic of lies versus truth in my own life. At the time, I struggled with my singleness and found it hard to hold onto hope. I had a good friend who challenged me to figure out areas where I believed lies instead of truth. As I worked on this in my own life, God brought healing as I rejected lies and accepted his truth.

It became clear to me that God wanted me to write a book about my single journey with the truth/lies approach. It wasn’t an easy process for me. Since I was dealing with a lot of these lies in my own life, it took me almost four years (on and off) to finish the book. Many times, I had to set it aside for long periods of time. During one of those breaks, I became convinced that all of the writing was just for my own healing. I was okay with that, but God had different plans for it!

Q2. Tell us the story of how the book came to be published.

In 2013, I was engaged and planning my wedding. I hadn’t pursued publication for the book in quite some time. It was mostly complete, but I had been rejected by many publishing houses and thought it wasn’t God’s plan for the book to be published.

Out of the blue, I received a call from Beacon Hill Press of Kansas City. They had been interested in the book years before, but nothing came of it. A new editor found my old proposal and called me about it. I sent her the manuscript to read. In August 2013, I was in the middle of my “trial run” with a stylist for my wedding hair and makeup. The editor called me and said, “We want to publish your book. I’m sending you a contract.”

After all that time, I couldn’t believe my ears. I was overwhelmed with the beauty of God’s plan. I got married and signed a book contract in the same year. So many answers to prayer in such a short time!

Q3. What do you believe is the most damaging lie that single Christian women believe and how does that affect them? 

It’s hard to choose the most damaging lie because I believe everyone is different. The enemy might attack me in the area of self-image while he may choose another vulnerable spot to attack you. The ten lies I chose were ones I personally experienced and saw most often when speaking to other single women.

To answer your question, though, I believe the lies about our sense of value or self-worth affect almost every other area of our lives and are critical to understand. The first half of the book mainly addresses these lies that impact our relationship with God. The truth about our identity in Christ—we are accepted, love, valuable beyond measure—combats these lies. Once we know we’re fully loved and accepted by Christ, we can better counteract some of the other issues, like the temptation to settle or believing something is wrong with us.

Q4. I have to ask a writing question because I love to talk with authors about the writing process. Specifically when writing Christian nonfiction, I find it challenging to write about something with which I struggle. It’s probably Satan attacking me so that I’m less effective for God’s work, but I feel that I have little to no authority to “help” others if I myself haven’t triumphed over those obstacles in my life.

Did you deal with these feelings during the writing process? If so, how? If not, why not? What advice would you give to other aspiring writers—particularly of Christian nonfiction—as they struggle with answering God’s call to write but also wrestle through their own sin and shortcomings on the very topic about which they write?

Absolutely! This is such a great question. I struggled with everything you mentioned here during the writing process. At the beginning, I kept telling God I couldn’t write a book. I’ve never heard God audibly, but every time I prayed, “I can’t” what popped into my mind was God saying, “You can’t, but I can do it through you.” One of the things that kept me moving forward was the idea that my single journey had a purpose. I found purpose in sharing what I had learned and communicating God’s love with others.

You also mentioned Satan’s attacks in your question. I didn’t recognize it as a spiritual attack at first, but every time I started focusing on the book, I became anxious and depressed. When that happened, I would stop writing. I finally realized it was a spiritual attack, which I believe was so strong because of my topic about lies and truth. I don’t mention that to scare anyone away from writing but only to encourage you to be covered in prayer and rely on Jesus during the process.

Finally, I encourage writers to definitely write about areas where they wrestle the most. People want to relate with you and come alongside you on your journey. I prefer to read books written by people who admit they don’t have it all figured out instead of those claiming they’ve conquered all their issues. From blogging, I know that the posts I cringe about as I hit “publish” are the ones that get the most positive response.

Allison, thank you so much for taking the time to chat!

Readers, get your copy of Truth, Lies, and the Single Woman now.  If you’d like to try to WIN a book, Beacon Hill Press is giving away 10 copies of Truth, Lies, and the Single Woman on GoodReads. Click here to enter to win.


This post features affiliate links. Should you make a purchase using my link, I will receive a small commission in exchange for my referral.

What Lies Do You Believe? is a post from: Mary Bernard


Waiting for Empty Laundry Baskets

Waiting for Empty Laundry BasketsDoing laundry drives me a little bit crazy.

Tell me you get this. I mean, we wash, we wear, we wash, we wear. Over. And over. And over again.

The monotony of household chores, in general, bores me to tears. More than once, I’ve raised my hands to God to say, “Why? Why the same thing over and over?”

My family members, especially, are not good stewards of their dirty laundry. They do not alert me to stubborn stains. They do not separate whites and colors as they stack dirty clothes in piles. My daughter often wears layers and pulls everything off at once, leaving me a tangled mess to unravel at the washer—socks and inside-out pants, underwear, tanks, and tees. And my husband rolls up all his dirty clothes at once into a ball. I have often found a surprise black sock in a load of whites because it was tucked into an undershirt.

So, there I stand at the washer. Treating stains and unfolding pants legs. Plucking out socks where they don’t belong.

All the time and most everyday.

With each garment I untangle, clean, and fold, I’m bringing in the kingdom.
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Today, as I did the same—turning Saturday’s softball pants inside out and extracting wadded-up socks from the cuffs—it occurred to me just how godly this act is. I so often struggle to find significance in the routine of everyday, that I was thrilled for this glimpse into my greater purpose.

Doing Laundry Is Doing Kingdom Work

With each garment I untangle, clean, and fold, I’m bringing in the kingdom. I’m making things right. I’m cleaning the dirt away. I’m restoring order to chaos. I’m re-aligning the seams and folding at the creases and smoothing the wrinkles.

As we work in this creation to impose order and beauty and truth on an otherwise broken world, we reflect the image of Christ. We push a little more of Jesus into the darkest and dirtiest recesses.

And we do it everyday. With laundry and dishwashers and diapers. All the time. Over and over again. Why?

Because God’s love and grace is inexhaustible.

And because we do not labor in vain.

We have assured hope that God is making all things new. Our dirty clothes (both literally and figuratively) will one day be totally redeemed. Filthy rags will become robes of pristine glory.

And our dirty laundry baskets will be forever empty.

Photo Credit: Biblioteca de Arte-Fundação Calouste Gulbenkian via Compfight cc

Disclosure: I am not a medical doctor. Any statements made on this blog about essential oil use are not meant to treat, diagnose, or cure any condition. My statements about essential oils are my opinion and are based upon my own experiences and research.

I occasionally feature affiliate links in my blog posts. Should you follow my link and make a purchase or join a membership website, I will be compensated for my referral.

Waiting for Empty Laundry Baskets is a post from: Mary Bernard


The Beauty of the Butterfly


Disclosure: I am not a medical doctor. Any statements made on this blog about essential oil use are not meant to treat, diagnose, or cure any condition. My statements about essential oils are my opinion and are based upon my own experiences and research.

I occasionally feature affiliate links in my blog posts. Should you follow my link and make a purchase or join a membership website, I will be compensated for my referral.

The Beauty of the Butterfly is a post from: Mary Bernard


Guest Post Today at Blonde Mom Blog

Blonde Mom Blog guest post | 5 Easy Changes to a Better You

I’m thrilled to let you know that I have a guest post today at Blonde Mom Blog! Jamie is a longtime friend of mine and now a colleague as we’ve worked together for a couple of years.

I love her blog, her wit, and her writing. If you’ve not checked out Blonde Mom Blog, you must!

And while you’re there, check out my post, too, in her 15 Minutes to Fabulous summer series (intro below):

5 Easy Changes for a Better You

You’ve probably heard the old adage, “How do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time.” No matter what’s going on, what task you’re facing, or for which goals you are reaching, you must take baby steps to get there.

Little bites of elephant one at a time.

That’s why I love the idea of 15 minutes to becoming fabulous. Those 15 minutes here and there add up. You start nibbling at the elephant and before you know it, you’ve cleaned your plate!

And so, I’m challenging you with these small bites you can take today, this week, or this weekend for all-around life improvement. Generally, they are so easy to incorporate into your routine that you’ll probably find they become healthy habits before you know it.

Read the entire blog post here.

Disclosure: I am not a medical doctor. Any statements made on this blog about essential oil use are not meant to treat, diagnose, or cure any condition. My statements about essential oils are my opinion and are based upon my own experiences and research.

I occasionally feature affiliate links in my blog posts. Should you follow my link and make a purchase or join a membership website, I will be compensated for my referral.

Guest Post Today at Blonde Mom Blog is a post from: Mary Bernard


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