Creating Hormonally Healthy, Safe, & Nurturing Homes with Ashley Spanovich

When you think of health you probably think of mental and physical health, but have you ever thought of what a healthy home means for your overall wellness?

I’m so excited to speak with today’s guest, Ashley Spanovich, who is the founder of Awakening Spaces, a consulting firm that supports health conscious individuals and those who have been impacted by mold, chemicals and EMS to create safe, nurturing spaces.

What We Talk About:

✨The foundation of a healthy home

✨Understanding what mold, chemicals, and EMFs in your home do to your body

✨Items to keep out of your room for a healthier mind and body

✨The impact that mycotoxins and mold have on your health

✨And so much more!

Creating a healthy home is something everyone should be aware of when it comes to healing and living an overall healthy life. Watch our interview below to know more about creating a healthy home:

Awakening Spaces is a full service interior design and consulting firm that support health conscious individuals and those who have been impacted by mold, chemicals, and EMFs create safe nurturing spaces. Whether you’re renovating, building new, or looking to improve your existing space, we’re here to help you navigate the massive project you’re taking on by looking at your environment holistically and outlining the steps you need to take so that you can feel confident that your home is supporting your health and you can get back to your life.

Learn more about Ashley and Awakening Spaces at her website.

Prefer to listen to interview on podcast? You can do so at iTunes or Spotify, or a variety of other placesAnd we SO APPRECIATE reviews, because it is the biggest way to help us grow! If you enjoyed this episode or others, an iTunes review goes a long way ❤️  



Christine Garvin 0:02
Hey, everyone, welcome to this week’s episode of hormonally speaking, we are rounding out the year with a really fun episode. Because this is something that unfortunately, well, unfortunately, this is happening for more people is that they are dealing with what we’ll call unhealthy homes, and things coming up in their home that they realize, aren’t really good for them. So maybe they have to do things like remediate the home, or maybe they have to move into a brand new home. And you have no idea actually how to make a healthy home because we weren’t really taught that at all right. And as we talk about with hormones, it’s not just the food that you eat. It’s not just the products that you use, but it’s most certainly the home environment, right, and all the chemicals that can impact our hormones that we are sort of breathing in and dealing with on a daily basis in our home. So that’s why I’m so excited to speak with today’s guests, Ashley Stanovich, who is the founder of awakening spaces, which is a consulting firm that supports health conscious individuals and those who have been impacted by mold, chemicals and EMS to create safe, nurturing spaces. Whether you’re renovating, building new or looking to improve your existing space, they are there to help you navigate the massive project you’re taking on by looking at your environment holistically and outlining the steps that you need to take so that you can feel confident that your home is supporting your health. And you can get back to your life. Welcome, Ashley.

Ashley Spanovich 1:37
Hi, thanks for having me on.

Christine Garvin 1:39
This is such important work, you know, because I, as I mentioned to you, and we were talking beforehand that I’m seeing things like mold, you know, come up in my practice a lot these days. And you know, most people don’t, aren’t even aware. Maybe they’re aware that mold is not a good thing, but they have no idea that their house might have mold in it, you know, and that and that they’re trying all these other things, and they’re not getting better. And then you know, the EMFs, too, that’s a whole other thing that, you know, so many women struggle with sleep in particular. And they wonder why I mean, there can be lots of reasons, but the EMS definitely can add to that. And so there’s just a whole with our current way of living, there’s a whole new way that we have to approach being in our homes. Right. So let’s talk a little bit about some of the big things that people need to be concerned with when trying to make their home healthy.

Ashley Spanovich 2:39
Yeah. So first, I want to share too, that you’re totally right with, you know, I don’t think a lot of people have the awareness of the home and how it impacts the health I can tell you, from my personal experience, I lived in moldy homes all through college, and I was what was important to me then was being with my friends having fun, cheap rent. I remember my mom coming in to move me into my first house I lived in and she was like, it smells like mold in here. And she was very, I was like, What are you talking about? No big deal. You know, she’s like, Well, that’ll make you sick. And I was sick. I was. I had a lot of like, the allergy type symptoms that you get from home, but I was like, I’m fine. No, probably was drinking too much or stayed out too late or whatever. Yeah, yeah. So it wasn’t until after college that I really started putting those pieces together, recognizing the impact that it had on my health. But some of the biggest things that I’ve learned are, you know, chemicals can impact our health and really disrupt our hormones. And mold is actually a huge problem. And it can colony in our bodies. And it can you know, it can build up over time if we’re not doing stuff to actively detox and support our body from it. And something I learned on my journey which at first when I when I began all this was electromagnetic radiation. That’s what is EMFs is electromagnetic fields. And that’s another thing that I realized farther along my journey, it took me a lot longer to really understand that one and really, I don’t know cope with the fact that that could actually be impacting my health. Right, right. I think that one that for people is a lot more vague than something like mold you can see or something like chemicals off gassing which you can kind of smell but you know, I I didn’t realize all this until after college. I had been healthy all through college. I got out of college, I had horrible brain fog. I had chronic fatigue. I had memory loss that was really, really scary. I’d be standing in front of somebody who I knew and knew their name and could not remember their name and it was poor fIying I thought I had early onset dementia. And so that’s what really started leading me into how to live a healthier life and really taking control of that. And I started doing all these different diets. I was vegan, I tried them all.

Christine Garvin 5:16
I feel like we were on the exact same trajectory. Like I lived in Malden college after I College, like I had my first health crisis. And then I went down that path to is I love it, keep going.

Ashley Spanovich 5:29
You know, and it’s so much more like, we’ll get to that. But like, you realize, you know, there’s so many things and you start to dip your toes and in that world of health and try all these diets and do things and you start to feel a little bit better. But there was just something that wasn’t right. It was it was off, I could not figure out my brain fog, I could not figure out memory issues. And it was really, really scary. And I had a lot of really terrifying thoughts, like very intrusive thoughts, and it felt like my mind was going. But I also had horrible stomach issues. Always digestive upset, you know, didn’t matter what diet I was doing, or, you know, how good I looked on the extra

Christine Garvin 6:12
healthy? Yeah, great. Yeah. Great. I’m

Ashley Spanovich 6:14
I don’t feel good. Yeah. So I started as I was working as a licensed interior designer, and architecture firms in the commercial world. And simultaneously, I was going through this health journey thinking I leave and become a health coach and quit all this. And then I found a functional practitioner, who said, Hey, let’s test you for mycotoxins. And I had no concept of what that was. and So lo and behold, we test for mycotoxin. Turns out I was high, and you know, a couple of different types. And she sort of opened up this can of worms of mold, bar environment. And this for me was a huge shock. Because I spent all day every day creating environments. I, I was a licensed interior designer,

Christine Garvin 7:08
right? You’re like, I know this stuff.

Ashley Spanovich 7:11
I just thought how could this be? And I just remember the gut wrenching feeling of like, okay, what now and who I call and what does this mean? And then it just like a domino effect of, well, what about all these other spaces I’m designing and, you know, in addition to the mycotoxins, we also found high levels of different chemicals in my body that are, you know, creating, you know, wreaking havoc on my hormones and, and then at the same time she goes, and oh, by the way, you should also avoid your computer, because you gotta you gotta avoid EMFs

Christine Garvin 7:45
Oh. Yeah, you’re like, do you live now in this century? Like, that’s impossible? Yeah, exactly. So,

Ashley Spanovich 7:55
you know, I’m getting dropped all this information as many people are.

And yeah, it’s just so overwhelming.

And financially, it’s such a burden. And it’s, it’s really emotional. And it’s just, there’s so many components to it. So anyway, that all kind of led me to getting into building biology, and learning and understanding our environment more. And really, what are the bigger things that are creating ill health within our environment. And, you know, it was stressful at first, but then it became empowering, because it was like, you know, there’s so many things out there that we cannot control. But what we do have ability to control is our homes. The ability to choose the food we put in our body, we have the ability to choose what we bring into our homes. And if we’re renovating or remodeling, we have the ability to choose what building materials we’re going to use. And that that is really empowering, if you know the right things to do. Yeah, so. So that really kind of led me to, you know, once I knew this information, it was like, I couldn’t go back. I just couldn’t continue doing what I was doing. And I just started awakening spaces on a whim kind of just saying, I’m gonna educate on this, I want to continue to work about this, I want to help people, you know, where I’m at right now and the knowledge I have, I want to help as many people as I can, and I want to continue getting more and gaining more knowledge on what really is the root cause. And so that’s kind of led me into the building science world and you know, passive house and all these other all these things. I mean, you can spend things I’ve never even heard of. We could spend so long talking about all the different like, niches out there people who are really focused on the environment and wanting to make it a comfortable place for people building durable homes. Uh huh. And so anyway, all of this has led me to really trying to support people along that journey of, you know, starting over and building new and how can we do it better? And, you know, do it for our children do it for our families.

Christine Garvin 10:14
100%. So, where do you tend to begin with people? We know what is kind of the most serve important? Because obviously, we have, you know, you brought up the financial aspects of getting healthy. And I know that just in the functional nutrition world that I work in, you know, and so, of course, we’re talking about homes and everything, you know, sometimes we were like, Okay, I can do this one thing, to my home or my new home, you know, what is kind of the most important and then walk us out from there?

Ashley Spanovich 10:48
Yeah, I think that it really depends on the person. Because a lot of people were coming to me at different stages of their life and where they are, yeah, some people are coming to me, they have, you know, mast cell activation, chronic inflammatory response syndrome, and mold is top priority. Number one. Yeah, you know, that is the main focus, yeah, um, you know, but other people were coming in, they’re just really health conscious, and they want to just build healthier homes and use healthier materials. And, you know, so it really depends on the person, what is the most important thing to them, so it’s very unique, and I like to try to understand where people were coming from, and then use that as information to know how to move forward. The other big thing I like to focus on, or share with people and educate people on at the beginning, is just knowing that our homes are only one piece of the puzzle. You know, healthy environment is very important, but also, you know, cleaning up your environment. And doing all these things alone isn’t going to be the key to your optimal health. I found along this journey that you know, eating the right food moving, moving your body getting outside, and working on emotional system, that aspect is huge. And I liked, encourage people to do that at the very beginning. That supports you throughout the whole process. Building and renovating is stressful. is stressful, right? Right. But if you can do some things alongside that, to make sure that you’re supporting your nervous system, and your emotions, and your mental health and wellness throughout that process, then it’s going to be a lot easier. And I think you’re gonna end up being a lot more successful. Because I think that if we don’t feel safe in our body, we might never feel safe in our home. So I like to really push that one at the beginning.

Christine Garvin 12:55
Okay, I just have to say, I love that. I think that’s amazing, because I talk about all the time with my clients and on the podcast, foundations of health, right? Like Eat, sleep, get outside, move your body hydrate, you know, it’s like, we so often when we want this magic pill, and it’s like, it comes back to those things again, and again. And again, if you don’t have those dialed in, then nothing else is really going to work for you. You know, and and you can make things worse by trying to do all these other things. And like you just talked about your nervous system, I mean, so much in our specially when it comes to hormones in our culture, the stress that we are under impacts our hormones so much. So when you’re talking about, like you said, I mean, I think they talk about moving being like, one of the top stressors of the lifetime, right? You know, like, even if it’s a happy thing that you’re doing, it’s still so much right. And for most people, it’s months and months and months, and sometimes maybe years in the process. So I think that that is incredible, that you focus on those foundations as a first starting point and kind of keep people coming back to that because I feel like I’m doing that all the time in my practice, too.

Ashley Spanovich 14:10
Yeah, so important. And, you know, our homes are equally important. I don’t mean to dismiss that I think the home isn’t as important as all these other things. But it’s all equally important is a good reminder. And it can be really easy to hear from a practitioner, that there’s mold in your home and it’s making you sick and then you get so fixated on it’s my home, it’s my home, it’s my home. You tell yourself the story, I’m not safe in my home, I’m not safe in my home. And it’s just it just can be really challenging because, you know, even with even when we do all the right things, there’s still people who just don’t feel safe even moving into a place because you’ve written that story into the tissues of your body. So that’s really, really important going into helping them and you know, then it’s really Important to if you are going to buy a new home, or you’re looking to move, or maybe you want to just evaluate your current home and say, Oh, what do you know? Do I have anything that might be a red flag or something to do? Then that’s where we can kind of come in and say, Okay, well, if we’re trying to find a home that has good bones, there are certain things we can look for to kind of identify whether or not this home is going to have a water issue, which is essentially the whole issue, we’re going to be you know, have a chemical issue or there’s going to be exposure to electromagnetic radiation. And so yeah, that’s

Christine Garvin 15:40
the We Can we talk about those three, because, you know, for people that don’t really know much about any of those, and how to look for those, and who they should be hiring to look for those kinds of things, you know, is can we talk about each of those should for the mold? You said, mold? What was the second one? I forgot a couple chemical? Yeah. And then the EMFs? So yeah, yeah, I’d love to dive into that. So

Ashley Spanovich 16:07
where to start because again, on, you know, depending on where you’re at, let’s say you’re you found that you have mold and in your home, and you’re now deciding to move into a new home. You know, if you’re looking for a new home, you want to make sure that it has the right inspection. So with mold, mold is tricky. Mold can be you know, people think of mold as something that happens in these older homes that just hadn’t been maintained. But the thing is, it can really happen in any home. New homes as well, you know, if you have plumbing in your built environment, then there’s potential for leak. And so you can have water damage, and you know, that stuff can happen behind your walls, and you really don’t know that it’s there, and everything can look beautiful. You know, I’ve had clients who’ve had these multimillion dollar homes that are gorgeous, and they send me pictures of their home. And I you would never know. Yeah, just you’re like, This is gorgeous,

Christine Garvin 17:11
right? And it can be in the H vac system too. Right? Like completely, you don’t even see it. Nope, you don’t come at ya

Ashley Spanovich 17:19
palette. You know, visual inspection can take you so far. But and that’s where like the building science aspect comes in a little bit. Because, you know, without seeing water damage without smelling the water damage you can. And something I’m trying to work on getting better at and noticing is you can look at how things are built and say, Okay, well, when it rains, for instance, where’s the water draining how out of the wall system, you know, this tells me that there’s going to be a higher potential for Water Damage and the wall, just the way things are put together. So that’s the new build side, there are definitely things that you can do. And the way that you assemble the home is really, really important to making sure the home can dry. With mold, the biggest thing to know is just you want a dry home. And if you’re looking for a new home, you know you want to be looking at the foundation of the home making sure water isn’t getting near the foundation, you want to make sure that you’re not seeing any discoloration around the exterior of the home that may show or tell us that there’s been water dropping that if you could see a new home or even go outside in your current home and in the rain and notice Where’s the water go? Is it huddling in a certain area? Like for instance at my house, I have a a downspout that was supposed to go into another downspout and it was not all the way in the hole. So you know, I went out in the rain and I see that my gutter is just it’s just when it rains, it’s just coming right down right in my foundation and it gets super wet in the area. Yeah, fix but it’s something to notice because after long term exposure, you know that that water is going to be moving inward? your crawlspace Yeah, so, um, you know, so that’s the mold really, with mold, you just want to make sure that your building is dry and there’s a lot of different areas to look at in that case but and then with chemical you know we have that new home smell, you know, maybe your home or you know, maybe you’re remodeling a room and you’re painting and even though it says low vo C you still notice that there’s an odor, you know, all of these things have different chemicals in them that inhale through our lungs and they build up into our systems. We also have s VOCs which are semi volatile organic compounds and those are you know, those are things that come from like plasticizers and LVT or luxury vinyl tile or luxury vinyl plank. I think that times it’s called floor. And as these materials start to break down a little bit, they degrade. And these chemicals wind up in our nice. Yeah. So we’re kind of getting exposed to chemicals in that way. You know, we also have combustion appliances, gas appliances in our home that have carbon monoxide, right? If we’re not venting our home, or, you know, if we’re not looking out for those, we could have Backdraft if we don’t have the proper ventilation and make up air, you know, we getting exposed to a lot of that too.

Christine Garvin 20:35
Oh, my God, there’s so many things to think about. And good, no, no, go ahead. And then.

Ashley Spanovich 20:43
And then the last one that we look at is electromagnetic radiation. So electromagnetic radiation comes from building wiring, cell phone towers, computers, laptops, Wi Fi, and our cell phone and any electronic device that we have. And there’s three different three main kinds that we’re looking at. There’s electric fields, there’s magnetic fields, and there’s radio frequencies. There’s also dirty electricity, that kind of, I haven’t really dove as much into that one, because there’s still a lot of studies going on. And it’s a little trickier. But there’s things that we can do in our home to limit our exposure to that. And you know, with the different types, there’s sort of different symptoms that can happen. So with kinetic fields, for instance, these come from things that have like a motor, or, you know, our building wire, or power lines, for instance, could be if you have a big transmission, power line in your backyard, like the big metal ones, those near your home, they can actually emit a magnetic field that can reach into your, into your home. And that can be associated with neurological disorders, and all types of different things too. And then there’s also there’s also studies done on childhood leukemia, and you know, it, it impacts your mitochondria, and just sets up a whole host and range of issues. So the more that we can limit our exposure, the better. And again, if we have control over making changes in our home, it’s a great place to start. But with that, I always say, Don’t worry about your home until you’re you know, making sure that your cell phone is your you’re reducing your use of your cell phone or doing it on airplane mode, because this is by far the number one exposure.

Christine Garvin 22:37
And I mean, I tell people, my clients all the time, it’s like we keep our phones near our beds most of the time, right? Like people will maybe keep their phone on their bedside table. And they’re literally on it until they go to sleep. And then they pick it up first thing in the morning, right. And so it’s like, it’s constantly near our bodies, you know, and it’s admitting that and it’s impacting our sleep, too, you know, that’s one of the first things I say, to help your sleep is get your phone out of your room, get your computer out of your room at night, you know, if I’m plugged the Wi Fi, that’s also a really, you know, good, easy thing to do. But it’s hard to get people off of the phone thing, you know, and so it’s like, at least you are going to have it like turn it on airplane mode when you’re getting ready to go to sleep like bare minimum.

Ashley Spanovich 23:28
Yeah, or, or try it for, you know, three, four days, and see how you feel if you notice a difference from doing any of those things. And, and, you know, you might notice a change, actually, I have a colleague who’s an electromagnetic radiation specialist, and her husband is a functional medicine doctor. And she she became an EMRs. Because she, he told her she was having sleep issues. And he said, Why don’t you try, you know, the Wi Fi the phone? And, and she did and she actually noticed such a drastic improvement in the entire wormhole. And now

Christine Garvin 24:05
this is what she does. Yeah, I know. It’s crazy, right? Because it’s, especially women over 40 I can really start to struggle with their sleep, you know, and certainly that is hormonally based, but I believe that you know, those changes in hormones than EMFs become even more potent in a lot of ways, right? Because you’re already dealing with these fluctuations, and then those come in and it just makes Yeah, a huge difference. And, and people you know, don’t think about up until 1015 years ago, we didn’t constantly have our phones on us our you know laptops on us and like, I mean, it scares me sometimes one of my friends, like she literally puts her phone like in her bra. Please stop doing that, you know, people let them in their pockets, you know, and you’re like getting that right up to very sensitive areas. You know, and so we just have to be super aware that you know, these things and, and I know, there’s a lot of people out there that don’t believe the connection between EMFs and issues, including cancer, you know, but there’s actually lots of research out there, you know, there really is. And so it is a, I think an industry thing that is trying to keep up that idea that they’re not harmful, right. And the reality is, we’re not going to be able to get away from them all. So we have to do what we can to protect ourselves. And certainly getting out of our room at night, is one of the easiest places to begin.

Ashley Spanovich 25:38
Exactly. And that’s going back to we can’t control what’s outside. So let’s not worry about that. But what we can’t control is our home. And also, I’d say the first place I tell everyone to start is inside the bedroom, because the bedroom is where you’re going to sleep every single night is where your body’s repairing. And so you know, that is a great place to start to just really start being coming aware of what’s in your bedroom. You know, how is my sleep? And all those different things? Impact?

Christine Garvin 26:11
Absolutely. Okay, so I want to go back, I want to talk a little bit more about chemicals, and then come back to EMFs. Again, in terms of specific things that you think are really helpful. So like, when we’re talking about chemicals, and we’re talking about, you know, even sort of the flooring, and all of these things that can release chemicals, what are some of the, I guess better choices, like maybe with the paint, flooring, all that kind of stuff?

Ashley Spanovich 26:36
Yeah, so I like to try to build as close to nature as possible. Anything that is a natural material, I am all for it, I will say some natural materials do and can have an odor as well. So if someone’s chemically sensitive, it’s, you know, it’s good to understand that just because it’s natural doesn’t necessarily mean you right for you. But you know, in terms of flooring, you know, solid, solid wood floor is really great, and really beautiful, you know, tiles, natural stones, all those things are really great options. But we’re also looking at how these things are installed. Because oftentimes, we have to use adhesives, mortar, grout sealers, all those things. And those are what I find actually kind of add up the most. Yeah,

Christine Garvin 27:24
that makes sense. So I work with people to,

Ashley Spanovich 27:27
you know that those products, I have a list of pre vetted things that we use, but also if there’s something that a contractor wants to use, or is very strong. about using, I also got to make sure there’s different programs that I can use that help me understand what the chemicals are, and this website called Pharaoh’s that you can put in the chemical name, and then it will show any studies that have been done in relation to that chemical in terms of you know, aquatic toxicity, human health, endocrine,

Christine Garvin 28:05
what was the name of that website? Alright, they’re

Ashley Spanovich 28:07
down arrows, T H, A, R. O S, you have to pay for it is a little pricey. And then green green screen is another place where you can kind of go and try to understand what the score of different materials and chemicals are. So that’s, those are some things that you can use to try to, you know, that these things, because I’m not a chemist, I don’t know what these chemicals do. And the other thing we don’t think about often is, how are these chemicals interacting together? They’re done on how all these different things are, come together. So we really try to use as natural material as possible.

Christine Garvin 28:55
I think that’s a really good point that I just kind of want to underline, you know, I don’t know if you know who Laura Adler is. Okay. So, you know, she talks about how you know, it, so many things are there. I don’t want to say they’re trying to get away with stuff, but like, they’re like the I forget what the term is, but the you know, the minimum or the maximum minimum, I guess, allowed. And that shouldn’t be an issue, right of a chemical. And it’s like this low level has been shown to be safe, essentially. Right. But what happens when a that low level is consistent over a long period of time? And then you add that to like five other low level chemicals, right? We don’t know that. Like you said, that hasn’t been studied. And so it only makes sense that, you know, our poor bodies are being bombarded with these chemicals all the time. That is not only good over time. Uh huh.

Ashley Spanovich 29:52
Yeah. And I love Laura. She has so many great units. She’s very science based and she has a really great course two, I think like talking toxins that I loved to doing at some point, just because she’s got such an extensive knowledge. So that’s another good resource for

Christine Garvin 30:08
Yeah, absolutely. Yeah, she she’s got a down. Go ahead.

So okay, that was great place to start with the chemicals and things in your home. So let’s talk about the EMFs. So beyond sort of what we talked about moving things out of your room, turning off the Wi Fi, I know a lot of people ask me, Are there any good products that are going to help protect you from the Wi Fi? Yeah, and can protect me from you know, all of that coming in? Yeah.

Ashley Spanovich 30:45
So I, you know, what we, what we want to do is we want to reduce our exposure, and we want to distance ourselves from the exposure and we want to hardwire in. So the way I think about these devices, is it’s not getting to the root cause. So my mentor Orem use this analogy, I absolutely love it. I use it all the time now, because it actually makes so much sense. He said, If a cigarette is burning in another room, are you going to put a bunch of air purifiers around you so that you don’t have the smoke in your face? Or are you going to go and find the cigarette and put it out? So with a lot of these devices, I feel like it’s sort of, it’s not getting to the root cause. A lot of them say that they actually, they don’t remove the level of, you know, whatever the field is on a meter. But we positively influenced the way that your body feel. Right, right. So I, when I was in the very beginning of my EMF journey of becoming an EMRs, I actually purchased a somatic some of Vedic and at first, so I have kind of mixed feelings about this, because at first, I got it, and I passed a parasite. And I thought, oh, my gosh, I’m happy detox. I did sleep really well. But I’ve had it for, I don’t know, you couple years now, and really noticed anything? So I don’t know. If if it does work, I don’t know how long that lasts. It’s really lasting a long time. Or how influences your body over a longer period of time. And it’s still not changed my meter and actually added more levels to my meter because the electric fields from the actual device and have dirty electricity in my walls. I don’t really know how I feel about it. Yeah, I do feel like there is some shift in energy with some different, you know, pendants and things like that. But again, that, that for me, it hasn’t been as tangible of a result as actually going in hardwiring my computer, off my circuit breakers at night, so that I’m not exposed to electric fields and doing different things and, you know, removing things in my home and unplugging appliances and electronics when they’re not in use. Yeah, most things have actually created much more of a significant improvement to my health than than any of these other devices. And

Christine Garvin 33:28
I’ve tried a lot cheaper.

Ashley Spanovich 33:32
It’s a lot cheaper. I said, hire somebody to come in and actually get to the root. Yeah, that’s gonna cost you less than a medic, or these chips are these pendants. And then once all those are clean, and all those are, you know, once you’re good, and you said, and you want to introduce some, you know, yeah, you know, EMF shielding, and this and that pendant or whatever. Yeah, go and try it. That can be an added supplement, if you energy, but make sure you’re putting out that cigarette first before start cleaning your air. I think I think

Christine Garvin 34:05
that’s so good. And I even think about myself, you know, I think what happens is, a lot of times, we just want that thing that’s either, you know, like whether it’s a supplement or whether it’s the medication or whatever, that we just are like, Okay, I take that once a day. And that’s it. And I’m good, you know, versus like, okay, it’s, you have to be a little less lazy. I go on mute and shutting everything off every night and unplugging and then plugging it and turning it all back on in the morning, which is not really a big deal. But I think you know, we’re just like, okay, path of least resistance, you know, and it’s just, it is funny sometimes because I fallen into it too. It’s like well, okay, so you’d rather spend maybe several $100 or more on something that is supposed to protect you by like putting out positive ions or whatever they’re saying, you know, versus like, just literally like, let me shut it off. And you know, certainly going back to like you said like hot hardwiring the computer, I know that’s a huge thing, just like fully getting the Wi Fi situation out of your house, you know, but I know a lot of people struggle. I mean, they love their Alexa and all of that, you know? And just like, Why does every Why does, you know, an oven and refrigerator all have to have, like electronic things to work now that we can like speak to it. And it’ll do, you know, now we don’t need to open the refrigerator, it’s fine.

Ashley Spanovich 35:29
And it allows these manufacturers to collect data on the usage of the product. And it’s the Internet of Things. That’s what it is, it’s connecting all the things and I just had a I was just at the ASHRAE Conference, which is a refrigeration heating conference, and we talked a lot about building envelopes. And I was seeing, you know, some, they’re very excited, people were very excited about how we have smart features on, you know, our mini splits, and things like that, and I’m just in my head, I’m thinking, you know, there’s a pro and a con everything. And they think, you know, people think this is helping, but we just need more data to show that, you know, these things add up and do influence our company, I think yeah,

Christine Garvin 36:10
yeah. And, you know, to me, too, I mean, I get the excitement as a human being are always excited when, like, new frontiers and new things happen, you know, but in reality, so many of these things are making us less mobile too, and less just the everyday things in life that are part of our movement, our daily movement, right? You know, people think I have to go out and do all this exercise. And it’s like, yes, I’d love for you to go walk, I’d love for you to go lift weights, but doing things around the house, that’s also exercise too. And these products are slowly taking that away, while adding the burden, you know, on our systems with live all the EMF. So yeah, it’s just, you know, it’s just worth I’m so glad we’re talking about this, because I think it’s really worth people thinking about it before making those purchases.

Ashley Spanovich 37:00
Yeah. And I think for I would love to see a push for manufacturers to make options that aren’t exposing people so much like, to a philosophical conversation at this conference was somebody who had a vr Virtual Reality headset, and it was talking about how amazing it was because they’re now able to learn Spanish with other people from across the world. And they do this amazing Spanish class, and they go into a real store. And when they’re telling me this, it was so cool. And I was like, I want to try it. Yeah. At the same time, you know, the package, I think it says, you know, children under 13 are not allowed to wear this device. And it’s like, whoa, why? Feel? Yeah, because their eyes are still developing or whatever.

Christine Garvin 37:44
But if that is happening to kids, you know, there’s certainly going to be an impact on the adult body to exactly and

Ashley Spanovich 37:51
so it’s like, Man, if only we could find a way that we could still have this amazing technology and way to do this, but not be exposing ourselves the way that it currently has to be. That would be Yeah, cuz I’m not against that. But

Christine Garvin 38:07
yeah, I know it is. It is hard, because like I said, you know, as humans, we like to be excited and buy new things, you know, but I agree. And you know, it, just like, how exciting that was in that moment. If you have that thing, you would probably get bored with it. A few months anyway. Right. And so we always have to think about that aspect. And then it’s just another thing laying around putting off.

Ashley Spanovich 38:35
Oh, yeah. Go down. Oh, really, the conversation was the whole dinner. We were like, but what about this? And what about the impact of society? And it was like, Okay.

Christine Garvin 38:45
Relevant again? Yeah.

Ashley Spanovich 38:47
Not a good topic. But yeah, it’s interesting. Yeah. I think we’re going to be hearing a lot more about them. And yeah, again, like the best thing about if you are buying a new home or building a new home, there’s so many things you can do. So that it’s also convenient for you.

Christine Garvin 39:03
That option as well. Yeah, absolutely. And I like that you also brought up the point that it is it is unfortunate that a lot of these companies are just moving towards like, you have to get smart, whatever it is, you know that there isn’t any other options. And so, yeah, and yeah, always lots of stuff to think about in that level. So tell us a little bit more about when somebody works with you like what the process is they? I’m assuming, do you only work with people locally or do you do like virtual stuff with them too?

Ashley Spanovich 39:36
Yeah, so I do remote and I do local. But what how we usually start is it will start with a kickoff call. But before the kickoff call, I’m usually having I get them linked into a client portal and Google Drive where they can import all the photos of their home any floor plans, they have any you know, depending on where they are in the process inspection reports or just Everything that they have in terms of either the home, they’re building the home, they’re renovating, or, you know, the home, they’re looking at buying. And so I go through that, and I look at everything holistically. And I put together a risk assessment of things that I see that I think can be improved, and who I think could be a great addition to the team. Because the thing is, there’s going to be a lot of if you really want to help the home, there’s usually going to be a lot of different people on the team. One person should not be doing everything, I want to claim to be doing everything, yeah, you wanna, you know, you might want a mechanical engineer who has an old background, or you know, a building envelope specialist, so sure that your building envelope is going to be great. And you really those two people, it’d be great if they’re boots on the ground, and can actually be going out on site when those things are getting installed so that you know that things are getting done, right. But anyways, we’ll go through, we’ll create the risk assessment, and we’ll do a kickoff call, where we just talk about all the different things that could happen and sort of in the order of importance, and kind of gauging where people are at. And it’s very different for everybody. And then from there, it’s, you know, conversations with the contractor and everyone else on the team and getting everyone looped in. And I have a conscious construction guide that I have outlined. So for new projects, the contractor can read through that, or the architect that’s working on the project, and they can say, okay, these are the things we need to be considering. And then if there’s any thing that needs to get included into the specifications, for the building drawings that can be included in into the language there is really, it’s just a lot of back and forth. And whatever people need is there is sort of a structure, I follow the process of design. So industry standard of, you know, your schematic and programming phase, which is where you’re really in like a conceptual phase. And, you know, what are we going to do? How are we going to lay things out in into D, just the floorplan, and then we also go into design development? And that’s where we’re really building things up in 3d and seeing what are the materials going to be, you know, what’s on the ceiling was the lighting, what’s the plumbing, and then construction documents is where we’ll detail those things and make sure like, for instance, for a shower, the waterproofing details are getting in there, right and cabinetry details are all laid out, right. And so it’s really I’m working with them along the whole entire process, just to make sure that all of these concepts are getting implemented when they need to get implemented across phases of design.

Christine Garvin 42:44
I love that because it is so much just thinking about how much you do need a team in this situation, right? Because it’s like, your contractor is not going to be thinking about all those things that you just talked about, you know, like the, the healthy aspects of them, right? So but it’s like, yeah, you need all these different people to kind of work together, I’m sure that that’s not always fun for you to work with some of the other ones, but you’re going to bat for them for your client, you know, for getting the healthy stuff in, where maybe a contractor or someone else would want to just be like cutting corners and doing the cheapest and most available thing.

Ashley Spanovich 43:19
For the most part. I’ve gotten so lucky with working with people who have such collaborative teams, and it’s all about finding a good contractor and someone who’s open and curious. Because, you know if they’re on board, they’re gonna go to bat with you as well. And you know, they want to make it work and they burst about doing new things and learning new ways that you know, you’re golden.

Christine Garvin 43:43
Yes, absolutely. You’re like it’s perfect opportunity. That’s so great. Well, thank you for sharing all this amazing information with us today. One thing I thought about that I did want to ask you before you go because I’m always curious and people ask me, Do you have a favorite non toxic mattress?

Ashley Spanovich 43:59
Oh gosh, there’s actually a lot of really great options out there. Okay, I have a Samina bed that I and I basically spent all my money on that bed down everywhere else in my house because I wanted that bed. But it’s a really great if you if you have the budget and you want to put all your money in your bedroom, which is where I always suggest to put your money then that’s a great option. Avocado makes a natural latex bed that’s very popular and people loved it. I’ve personally slept on it and loved it. You know, natural Pedic has one. I’m trying to think of some other really good ones I have if anyone is out there looking for a bed I have an entire mattress document that I’d be happy to send. Oh, cool. Just DM me on Instagram raises and I’d be happy to share that

Christine Garvin 44:51
with you. Oh, that’s so great. Yeah, because I feel like that’s a big one. And for those that don’t know, you know the mattress can be a big issue right? because it has flame retardants, and it just, there’s lots of chemicals that are in our mattresses and you gotta think you sleep on that for it, hopefully at least eight hours a night, you know, for how many years? And so it is I feel like when you have the budget to do it a good thing to invest in a really high quality non toxic mattress.

Ashley Spanovich 45:21
Yeah, definitely your face. Is this close.

Christine Garvin 45:24
Yep. Yeah, it’s all of them there. And I mean, everything you know, you’re just like, Okay, I’m all laying on it. So. So thank you for sharing that and should thank you for a document on that, too. That’s awesome.

Ashley Spanovich 45:33
I do want to share with natural latex mattresses though, you do want to make sure that they’re getting ventilation underneath the mattress, really any matters. But with the natural materials, too. You want to make sure it’s getting nice airflow underneath to keep it dry. Because there have been some people who have said, you know that they found mold in between their mattress, and I would just wonder, Well, how was it? What was the platform? Yeah, just really something important to consider

Christine Garvin 46:03
anything interesting, not something I thought about, but I could totally see mold growing underneath the mattress. Wow. Lots of things that they allowed all the debt. Well, thanks again for being here with us today and sharing all that amazing information. It was so amazing. Like just I’m blown away. And I know there’s so much more I could ask you, but we’ll stop there for now. And so as you mentioned, your Instagram is at awakening spaces, and then your website is also awakening spaces. Yep, awakening Okay, perfect so people can contact you there. All right, you guys, thanks so much for being with here with us this week and I will see you next time.

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