Where are you from and how long have you lived in town? What brought you to the area?

I moved a lot growing up.  I am originally from Southern California and spent most of my childhood between both California and New Jersey.  I attended 13 schools in 12 years as we went back and forth from coast to coast several times! No we weren’t a military family. My father played professional baseball for 26 years which led to our various moves.

My husband, Patrick, and I moved to the Chicago area in 1998 when he was drafted by the Chicago Bears and we lived here during his 16 year career and have stayed since he retired in 2014.  We have lived in Highland Park, Chicago (Wrigleyville), Lake Bluff and moved to Libertyville almost 11 years ago.  We love the Chicago area and are glad to call Libertyville home.

 

 

Do you have child(ren)? Age(s)

We have one daughter, Tyler, who is 13 years old and in 7th grade.  We are big advocates for Montessori education and this method and philosophy has been a perfect fit for Tyler and for our family.  We are so thankful we have stayed the course with Montessori throughout her schooling.  She attended Montessori School of Lake Forest (which is very convenient to Libertyville) for 10 years (age 2 ½ through 6thgrade) and once she graduated from MSLF in 6thgrade, we have chosen to continue her Montessori education at Countryside Day School in Northbrook.

 

 

What are your favorite things to do in the area with and without your kids? Family friendly restaurant? Date night?

We love our downtown and all of the fun restaurant options we have!  We love to visit all of them but our usual spots are O’Tooles, Shakou and Pizzeria Deville.  We love Egg Harbor for breakfast/brunch and Picnic Basket for a casual lunch, often riding our bikes into town in the summer for those!

 

Are you involved in a business venture, a local organization, a creative endeavor or in the corporate world? Please share!

I am a former elementary teacher but left the classroom over 16 years ago.  During that time, as we were trying to conceive a child, my husband and I were confronted with a journey into unexplained infertility. This experience pushed us into a world of researching all of the toxic ingredients that we are exposed to daily.

Originally we focused on ‘real food’…choosing organic when possible, reading ingredient labels, buying pastured meats and being mindful of the quality of the foods we put in our bodies. I believe food should nourish our bodies…not make us chronically ill.

I believe we can learn to make healthier choices and once you know better, you can do better. One small changes leads to another and we wanted to share what we found so inspiring and helpful with others.

I started a healthy lifestyle blog, Oh Lardy, in 2012 as a resource to share that information with a broader audience.  I believe knowledge is power and I have loved taking my passion for education into the healthy lifestyle niche.

As I learned more about the quality of our food, I also began to learn more about other products we are exposed to daily and this has led to a mindful shift into doing the best we can to get rid of toxic products in our home.

I educate via my blog, social media and in person workshops on how to use a variety of tools to live your healthiest life.

I am also passionate about using essential oils as one of those many tools and have been using and marketing Young Living Essential Oils for almost 5 years and this experience has been so rewarding.  I love having a community of thousands of families around the globe who are linking arms with each other and are passionate about using the healing power of plants to support their body systems, help with focus, sleep, emotional support as well as help get rid of synthetic fragrances, toxic cleaning products, beauty products and so much more!  My husband is also involved with Young Living and we both love helping others live a life full of wellness, purpose and abundance.

 

 

 

I am active in a variety of community and charitable organizations.  I currently serve on the Boards of Directors for both the Montessori School of Lake Forest and the HAVE Foundation.  The HAVE Foundation stands for Honduras Agalta Valley Education and it is a program that is near and dear to my family’s heart.  We go on service trips annually to help the people in rural Honduras.  When we travel to Honduras, we help with things such as installing water filtration systems, pouring concrete floors, working with students in the schools, painting, sewing and so much more.  You can learn more here: http://www.havefoundation.org/team  (Picture is with one of the students we sponsored, Cristina, who recently graduated high school).

 

 

 

What is one thing people would be surprised to know about you?

My first year out of college, I lived in Amman, Jordan teaching at the American Community School.  I loved living in the Middle East and can’t wait to take my family back there. Jordan is on our (very long) list of future destinations for travel!

 

What’s the best piece of advice you’ve gotten from another Mom?

I think one of the best pieces of advice as been from Maria Montessori…“Never help a child with a task at which he feels he can succeed.”  Believe me, it can be frustrating as heck to have a toddler dress herself, to teach an 8 year old to do her laundry, to allow a child to ‘do it herself’ when it is so much easier for me to do the tasks for her. But I believe following this, Tyler has learned and is continuing to learn the value of being independent and capable and this will serve her well in adulthood.  I first heard that quote in college while studying education and it has stuck with me and we have witnessed its benefit throughout our Montessori experience and I just love everything about it!

What is next for you?

I am excited to be organizing and leading a village of people who are passionate about detoxing their lives…with food, personal care products, cleaning products…getting rid of toxic chemicals and supporting their bodies naturally.   I am passionate about helping others live a life of wellness, purpose and abundance and am always welcoming new people who are ready for that journey!

Our community is constantly growing and I am excited to be offering more empowering education both locally and online via social media.  You can follow that journey on:

 

 

Special Gifts for LAM readers:

I have many resources available to people on my blog.  I hope you all check them out!

If you are curious about simple tips to detox your home, I have a free e-course: https://ohlardy.com/nontoxic-home-course

I also have created a variety of e-books and courses available on my blog and would love to offer a discount to the readers of LAM on my ebooks and ecourse.  www.ohlardy.com/shop is the place to check them out and readers can use the coupon code OHLARDY50 at check out for 50% off!

If you are curious about learning more about essential oils, text LEARN to 847-450-6625 (my private educational number).

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