Archive - 2014

1
Apparently I’m a Survivor and a Thriver! Awesome!
2
My Favorite Nutrient Dense Superfood!
3
Never Be Afraid To Stand Up for Yourself!
4
A Few of My Favorite Immune Boosters
5
Little Bird, Little Bird, Where Did The Time Go? An Empty Nesters first..
6
Here’s The Thing…
7
Is this Mercury Retrograde Sitution Kicking Your Ass? Mine Too…
8
How to Lessen Your Chances of Getting The Flu This Season
9
A Lack of Vitamin K1 & K2 can cause what? Click the Slides and See!
10
Let’s Talk About Gluten Baby, Let’s Talk About You & Me..
11
Are You An Antacid Junkie?
12
Why You Should Own House Plants & What They May Do For Your Health
13
Gratitude, not Attitude- Food for Your Soul
14
Some of My Favorite A’s
15
Soul, Rumi, Mystic & Love
16
Julie’s Spaghetti & Fire Recipe
17
Why Lemon and Warm Water in the Morning?
18
Homemade Fruit and Vegetable Rinse
19
Oregano Oil and It’s Incredible Healing Powers!
20
Why Your Pet is Good For Your Soul xo
21
Quick! Ty Needs a Power Smoothie!
22
Afternoon Chia Delight!

Apparently I’m a Survivor and a Thriver! Awesome!

Well, if there is one thing I’ve learned over this holiday season, is that I really do like myself regardless of what I do and don’t have.  I spent a lot of time with myself, crying at first for the 24 hrs before Christmas day itself, then realizing I hold the key to leaving my house, on my own, without shame, on Christmas day. This was afterall my first holiday ever in my entire life without my son, without family, without friends, without a place to celebrate in a community and a space at the dinner table with my name on it.

img_3594-704x454The Light Bulb Moment of  Who gives a fuck that I’m alone, family is in the Valley, son is abroad, friends and neighbors are gone doing their thing, I deserve to have the best day I can, was so freeing. No pressure. It turned out to be a wonder-ful day of talking to a few new faces, seeing movies, walking my dog and enjoying a warm coffee on a beautiful blue skied, brisk day in the PNW!

What hit me was that I was surrounded by love in a variety of ways.  I spoke to family & friends, exchanged silly snapchat videos, I facebooked several others, the sunshine kissed my face and the trees all high fived me as I walked by them.   That morning as I took a shower, I said outloud to the universe, “today, (Christmas) I invite only goodness, only energy that supports me and allows me to smile from the inside out”.    Sure enough, that is exactly how my day presented itself to me.   I felt warm, loved and grateful to have a car that works,  money for the movies,  food in my fridge and my belly, my loved ones are safe and healthy, my dog is a cute snugglebunny who needs a breathmint and the freedom to do what I want with my time.  My life is good.

This was definitely a necessary and good experience as to what I really value, what I really want in my life and how I’ve always been a survivor and thriver!

I hope your days are filled with the many blessings life has to offer and may you always be present for the sunrise and sunset in your own life!

Love Julie, xo

 

 

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My Favorite Nutrient Dense Superfood!

If there is one thing I am always trying to get into my body, it’s GREENS!   Sometimes I need a boost and a little help from one of my favorite smoothie enhancers, Greens + Advanced Multi Raw Superfood Supplement.  The reason I was drawn to this particular brand was because it was gluten free.  However, when I began to read the ingredients and realized that these Greens would be such an essential vitamin, mineral and antioxidant mix, I knew this is what my body needed.

The other feature I really liked was that they used infrared activation so as to preserve the heat sensitive phytonutrients in the greens and maintains the quality of the superfoods!  This means that what naturally occurs in your greens to give you nutrients in the raw form, is retained even through their processing.

The more alkaline your diet, the better your heart, your brain and your body will be. If each system is in working order and clear of toxins, each system can function at their optimum best and keep your lymph system moving, your digestive system moving and keep your blood oxygenated for transporting and delivering the vitamins and minerals your gut and body need as part of a healthy life.

I’m also sold on this product because it provides me with incredible energy that I really appreciate in the mornings.  I don’t drink coffee so I consider this my “juice” that sustains me through my day.

Superfood, another way to add greens!

Advanced Multi Raw Superfood Greens+ (Orange Peel Enterprises) 9.4 oz. Powder ~ One container is worth a try for gained immunity, essential vitamins and minerals, energy, digestive support, detox properties, keeping your pH alkaline, building your bones and reducing stress. Clearly I like this product! Hope you will too! Take care of YOU because you’re the only YOU the world is blessed enough to have.

Julie

 

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Never Be Afraid To Stand Up for Yourself!

Never be afraid to stand up for yourself!  You know when someone insults your soul because it hurts in a way that makes you doubt yourself and goes against what you know to be true to your core, to your life energy.  You are worth a relationship that feeds your soul, supports your dreams and thoughts, and is kind to your standards from their heart to your heart, not just their idea of what a relationship is…

You are your best advocate. If you feel like you’ve been insulted, odds are, you have.  If you feel like you’re being belittled, odds are, you are.

Common symptoms of being controlled and manipulated: 

  • If you find yourself dropping friends and taking on his/her friends
  • If you find you’ve changed your clothing, shoes and certain physical aspects of yourself for his/her appeasement
  • If you pass off his/her passive aggressive behaviors as “oh that’s just part of who he/she is”
  • If you find yourself making excuses for his/her insensitivity towards your feelings over anything
  • If you find yourself thinking about the nice things he/she does for you as a compensation for the shitty things he/she says or does
  • If he/she buys items for you that may be more appropriate for his/her comfort level, not yours  (i.e) certain types of shoes, clothes, music selections, etc.)
  • If you have tell yourself “oh they are just a wounded little child on the inside, I understand”. Well, we’re all little children on the inside and that is no excuse for abusing your kind heart
  • If you’re on his/her time frame.  Your events in life are of non-importance and any inconvenience you have is ridiculous on your part – NOT!
  • If his/her family doesn’t really like your partner.  There could be a reason why. Not always, but listen to what they are saying
  • If you are not allowed to have friends of the same sex due to the others insecurities (this includes your job, workout environment, school functions, etc)
  • If you are bullied out of your beliefs through belittling and zero compassion from where you came or even the kindness to listen with a full compassionate heart
  • If your partner uses phrases like “do it for me”, “women/men your age don’t…fill in the blank of whatever applies”, “if you loved me, you’d…” “That’s not normal” and other fun phrases that make you believe you’re the one who needs to change.
  • If your partner cannot apologize because they really believe no matter what they say or do, they don’t owe you any recognition of your feelings
  • If you feel relaxed in your time alone and he/she just wants to know why you need time to yourself
  • If he/she implements double standards like it’s OK for them to go away with their friends but not you, because men/women may be predators to you
  • If your partner tries to control circumstances for their convenience and steam rolls over anyone in the process, that’s a NO Bueno!

Nothing can trump compassion and  understanding from you partner in a relationship, however, if their means of communication is really a source of control and passive aggressive banter, how loving is that really?

It’s hard to admit that we all make poor choices in mates sometimes.  Be your own best friend and advocate of self. YOURSELF!

I have been there and it just rubs me the wrong way to see it happen to someone else. Especially when he/she has children as well. One can only hide their true nature for so long and then like a balloon that pops, you realize you’ve been manipulated out of things you believe, who you are, what you want, torn down and built back up to someone elses’ model of you.

Do what feels right to you, to your heart, to your soul, to your gut.  Ignoring the little voice on the inside doesn’t make anothers violating behavior dissipate, it only feeds your little voice a louder tone that can eventually burst into dis-ease, dis-comfort and dis-cord with one’s true happy self.

OBEY THE LITTLE VOICE!

 

 

 

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A Few of My Favorite Immune Boosters

For starters,  I am a believer in the medicinal properties of fungi, veggies, bones, ferments, garlic and herbs! Here a few of my favorite immune boosters!

Everything I use is Organic or it will not be consumed for if the goal is health, why eat pesticides or GMO’s? If you are on a budget and don’t grow your own food, there are a lot of ways to get a better bang for your buck by using organic frozen veggies or making casseroles, large pots of soups and meals that you can freeze and reheat down the road.

I’m just a Fungi! I often use reconstituted mushrooms as a soup base and I always use the reconstituted water.  I’ve not had a flu in over 7 years (knock on wood or our woodland friends shall I say!) and I really believe that this is just one of the reasons why. My favorite mushrooms to play with in the kitchen are Organic Maitake, Shiitake, Cremini, White Button, Oyster, Reishi and an immune supplement that is made up of about 17 different kinds of mushroom extract as well. Mushrooms are nutrient rockstars that can relieve stress, provide relief from fatigue, build your immunity amongst a whole host of other benefits.  I used to get my mushrooms from a wonderful woman in Portland who forged and sold them to me each year from the farmers market.  Next on my list, is forging them myself and don’t worry that will be a blog too!

Veggies! I use seasonal veggies to fill up my soups.  In the Fall and Winter time I use lots of vegetables like carrots, parsnips, potatoes (red, yukon, sweet, purple), swiss chard, kale, celery, onion, winter squash, broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, fennel and actually I use beans as well, not a veggie I know, but needed to be noted.  These all have properties that are made for healing.  For example, once you cut open an onion, you activate an anti-cancer agent that is working on your behalf.  When you feel ungrounded, eating grounding foods like root veggies (carrots, turnips, parsnips, etc.) can help your root Chakra reconnect for a more solid and secure feeling. Maybe that’s why I am so drawn to them.  I am a little bit of a celestial being!

Bones Bones Bones! It’s funny that as someone who only eats animal products maybe 2x a year, I will incorporate bones into my soups when I make them for my son.  The old Jewish tale of Chicken Bone Broth is spot on! Bones hold the marrow, they hold the energy, and they hold the nutrients that your body may just be desiring to keep a healthy immune system. Bone broth is good for your joints as it contains glucosamine and chondroitin  which most people seek from a capsule.  My biggest reason would be the fact that bone broth is known to heal leaky gut. Basically leaky gut is when undigested food particles end up in your bloodstream.  Doesn’t that sound like a disaster?  Its is!  Bone broth is also known to make your hair and nails super health and pretty.  Anything that makes you pretty, heals your gut and lubes your joints, is really A-OK with me!

Fermentation Definition: an enzymatically controlled anaerobic breakdown of an energy-rich compound (as a carbohydrate to carbon dioxide and alcohol or to an organic acid); broadly :  an enzymatically controlled transformation of an organic compound. Say What? Basically, it means foods like cabbage sit until they become bacteria boosting powerhouse agents. Ferments are  an immune system &  natural gut flora restorer.  They are a natural pro-biotic and can be a guts best friend.  Some of my favorites are Sauerkraut (which I can only have a tiny bit as I have a sulfite allergy and these naturally contain sulfites!  Bummer, I know!) Kombucha, which I’ve only just been able to drink again about once a week but I love it! (Sulfites again) Pickled Dilly Beans are another favorite and they do not stand a chance in this house for more than a day.  Kefir is so good for you and yet, it’s one that I have yet to adore. Someday perhaps.  Two of my trusted go to resources for gut health information are Donna Gates and Summer Bock.

Garlic and Herbs: Yes, Garlic is the new Peaches.  So garlic also contains naturally occurring sulfites, so I tread lightly in frequency, but not in amount.  Garlic is such a potent natural antibiotic for the body and has been used throughout time for health purposes, not just to scare off vampires.  Garlic is wonderful for the lungs, chest colds and the immune system. Garlic is great for heart health and removing plaque.  Garlic is also the thyroids friend as it contains iodine which is much required by the body to thrive. Now when you mix Garlic with Herbs like Thyme, Rosemary, Sage, Tarragon, Basil, Oregano or whatever your favorites are, you can mix them in a bowl with olive oil and create your own drizzle for a spaghetti noodle delight, or you may drizzle a top of tomatoes or cucumbers.  Fresh herbs like Thyme and the others mentioned are great as whole sprigs in soups that simmering and other dishes that you’d like to pop with flavor and ignite .  Oregano is another of my favorites for immune building whether it’s taken from an oil, fresh or dried.  Do not forget about parsley and cilantro as metal attractors, turmeric for arthritis inflammation, basil oil to rub on adrenals for adrenal fatigue, ginger for strong immunity – also a natural blood thinner, rosemary to contradict the effects of carcinogens  and there’s just too many to tell.

AND… there you have a few of my favorites!

*If you are on pharmaceutical medications or are treating a condition, it’s always wise to check with your Dr., Naturopath or Holistic Practitioner to make sure that what you’re ingesting is not in conflict with any herbs, spices, foods or drinks you are consuming in high doses or accumulative.  We are at a delicate time with food allergies running rampant, people on large amounts of medications and there can be serious side effects.

 

 

 

 

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Little Bird, Little Bird, Where Did The Time Go? An Empty Nesters first..

As holidays approach and what used to be standard is no longer, I am acutely aware that my son is out in this world, living a dream and exploring an opportunity he manifested into reality.  This is what we want for our children and we know the process is going to carry many emotions and we let  go and hold on in only a way that we can.

Normally, I would be decorating the house for the Fall season and Halloween, however I chose this year to leave behind the hype and colorful pieces of celebration.  Why?  The only conclusion I’ve come up with is that I feel like I have outgrown this particular feeling of needing and wanting this for myself.  Part of the joy was the collaboration of parties and decor with festive neighbors who had kids and we were all taking a part in the community hallows eve of doing it for the kids and it made us happy to see them happy, but mostly for me, it was the pure comfort of knowing my son quietly appreciated the fun end result of having a home filled with warmth.

So, with a nostalgic twinkle in my eyes and holding space in my heart, I watch other parents with their little ones, I watch them laughing,  I watch them taking part in these rituals that are really silly conceptually overall (whole different blog!), I watch them form their traditions that help weave the fabric of family that I once had the pleasure of creating as well.

There are a few other little birds  (my nieces & step daughters) my son and I used to celebrate these moments with as well.  These memories are embedded in my heart. Funniest part is, I am only at Halloween in my nostalgia! There is still Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Years left!

As the year continues on, my heartspace grows to epic proportions of love and gratitude and I make my way by seeing the joy in others, creating some new traditions this year,  knowing that I am so blessed and have great new neighbors, great friends near and far, activities to keep me busy, time for creations that are being birthed and born in my business life, volunteering opportunities and family that I will see when they come to visit. I find peace knowing that my son is safe, sound and enjoying his creation of memories and making new friends.

This is just a snippet into my open heart of an empty nesters first season without her kiddo.  Remember time flies and so do our little birds. Enjoy Every Moment,

Love Julie xo

(PS) Doggy Love Moment:  My dog is like a 24 hour toddler so I always have him to love on and luckily for me, he accepts every pet, every kiss, every hug!

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Here’s The Thing…

Based on a true conversation tonight. I received permission to relay the context of this story as it’s not really my story to tell, but there is such value here.

A friend called me and she was struggling after having these words said to her “here’s the thing” and it left her unsettled. Words are powerful and trigger so much in us at a core level.  W.O.R.D.S can trigger the obvious and hidden hurts of feelings we have yet to resolve or feelings we don’t want to associate with ourselves any longer.

My take, when emotions turn to rationalizing and rationalizing turns into excuses, excuses bottom out with a quick truth ending dialogue sometimes concluding with “here’s the thing”.

What exactly does that imply? Is that the bottom line? Yes, most often.  Is that the moment we acquiesce to our feelings? Yes, we are done investing energy.

I believe it sums up the way we choose to convey a truth. A truth that we no longer care to address or indulge in.  It’s a moving on statement.  “Here’s the thing” really is a point of disconnect, an I’m at my limit and no amount of talking, no amount of discussion, pleading, begging, crying or negotiating is going to change the situation of what is.

If someone uses this phrase on you or vice verse, remember, a simple kindness is to use a tone of understanding and empathy towards the person who is on the receiving end. It’s OK to stand your ground but there is no need to dismiss or diminish another persons feelings while you are in the throws of trying to escape. Sincerity and a firm position in your desire to exit is a wonderful way of being clear and being true to your cause. If you add in a little compassion, I believe Karma will be on your side.  Not everything in life is meant to be, how we handle it though builds character and valuable lessons.

I learn from my friends always and feel blessed that my friend was trusting enough to share this with me and then to let me share this with you.  Such important reminders as to how much power words can carry when we attach feelings to the words we internalize.

Julie xo

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Is this Mercury Retrograde Sitution Kicking Your Ass? Mine Too…

I am not normally this effected by the retrogrades however, this one, I call the Mother (fucker) of Retrogrades.  I am usually a positive person, looking at all the goodness, possibilities and opportunities for growing and this round of retrograde is proving to be a true push of purging old patterns, thoughts and beliefs.

I am OK with change as that is part of the ever evolving flow of life but some changes are more pertinent and potent than others and those are the ones that sting and push you in the direction you should be going. As we know, if you don’t know make decisions in your life, life makes decisions for you.  Good Stuff, eh?!

So, here is my take care plan until this all smooths over or at least the intensity mellows out.  If you’re getting your ass kicked around a little too, maybe these self care suggestions will help you!

  • I’m eating warm foods to feed the comfort I am desiring.  For example so far over the last week approximately, I’ve made Potato Leek Soup. Butternut Squash soup and a Veggie Stew.  I bought some Gluten Free Bread from Great Harvest and made a few slices into croutons for my soups.  Yum!
  • I’m talking with friends who are empathetic, positive and sometimes have more intense retrograde poo occurring than me.  You see sometimes it helps to remove the focus from yourself and reach out to others who are struggling.
  • Not everyone has to do this, however I did create an association of feeling like I was doing something good for my spirit and so with that said, I bought myself a new local companies organic face moisturizer and then went to Victoria’s Secret and bought myself a little something cozy and sexy.
  • I swapped out my cool summer like sheets for my warm flannel sheets, washed my comforter and made my bed, which I don’t usually bother doing.
  • Everywhere I go, I talk to strangers (just friends we haven’t met yet) and ask them how they are doing.  Surprisingly the bulk seem to share their stories which is such a beautiful instant relatability factor affirming that we really are all humans together in this retrograde festival of changes.
  • I’m allowing myself  to feel every emotion and go through the motions and then when I’ve had enough, I let them go.  Sometimes they come back (some are super persistent) so I look at them a little closer and then I release them again.  I do not beat myself up for any feelings, tears, joys, etc., I embrace them and thank them for showing up and providing clarity as to how I authentically feel.
  • I walk almost everyday or get in some form of movement.  For instance if no walk, perhaps yoga (at home so far) or I confront the kickbag in my garage, etc.
  • Lastly, I go back to being grateful for this life, for these opportunities to be clear in my growth and wants and needs. I celebrate the soliloquy of conversations between my head and my heart and reality.  I know this retrograde will not last forever and my health is good, my family and friends are good and eventually life will balance back out, bringing with it the changes that have incurred and eventually becoming manageable, for change is just a different path or direction and with the right outlook, is always doable.

So here’s to the next few days of the rest of the retrograde, cheers to the 23rd when the NEW MOON is here and I reset my intentions with love, positivity, a little magic and a peaceful center.

Love Julie, xo

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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How to Lessen Your Chances of Getting The Flu This Season

This was put out last year for flu season and it’s back because it’s true and can help you keep your immune system fighting strong! Click on the image to make larger and print out!

flu

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A Lack of Vitamin K1 & K2 can cause what? Click the Slides and See!

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Slide3 Slide4

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Let’s Talk About Gluten Baby, Let’s Talk About You & Me..

Is Gluten affecting your body, your skin, your life?  It’s affected mine. 

Where do I begin you ask?  Begin by asking yourself, “How Do I Feel?”  bloated, fatigued, stomach pain, depression,muscle cramps, joint pain, irritability or perhaps a general “off” feeling?   True Celiac disease can be life threatening if left untreated.  Celiac can also starve your body of the nutrients you are taking in from a lack of absorption,  leaving you to lose weight (not always a good thing), weak, exhausted and could cause foul smelling oily or fatty greyish stools.

Next, take a look at your family history and start asking your family members if they have ever been tested for any Gluten issues. Also, keep in mind, if they don’t have an issue, you may still develop Gluten Intolerance/Sensitivity.

Next, take your health into your hands and get tested if you suffer from any of the following:

  • Autoimmune Disease – this covers a wide variety: Rheumatoid Arthritis, Lupus, etc..
  • Osteoporosis
  • Chronic Intestinal Problems
  • IBS
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Diabetes
  • Sleep Apnea
  • Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
  • Chronic Anemia
  • Psoriasis
  • Eczema
  • Migraine Headaches
  • Hypothyroid – Low thyroid
  • ADD or ADHD
  • Restless Legs Syndrome
  • Autism

This is not even a complete list…

What can you do if you think you might have a gluten issue?  Get tested!

How do they test for Celiac?

  • A series of blood tests
  • Endoscopy and Intestinal Biopsy
  • Some people have a skin rash called Dermatitis Herpetiformis which is indicative of Celiac

 How do they test for Intolerance/Sensitivity?

  • Saliva Tube test – that worked for me!
  • Cheek Swabbing
  • Elimination Diet

Symptoms can show as, but not limited to: bloating, pain or discomfort in the abdomen, fatigue, lethargic after a meal, and diarrhea. These are just a few of the common symptoms.

What foods contain gluten?  Some of the Foods that contain Gluten are:

Wheat, Barley, Rye, Couscous, Semolina, Pastas, Bagels, Pastries, Crackers, Flour, Cookies, Oatmeal, Pancakes, Bread Crumbs, Croutons, Pizza, Tortillas, etc… The list goes on and on.  Take the time to know what you’re eating.  Gluten hides in many foods.

YOU CAN LIVE A HAPPY &  HEALTHY LIFE WITH  CELIAC OR A GLUTEN INTOLERANCE!   

 As always, just because you exhibit any symptom or dis-ease does not automatically make you Gluten Intolerant or give you a case of Celiac.  Get the facts before you react and remember to listen to your body!   Having the correct diagnosis and information helps you live fully and allows you to create meals and a health plan that works to alleviate your discomfort and allows your body to thrive!

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Are You An Antacid Junkie?

Do you feel bothered by a painful feeling from the burning sensation in your esophagus and/or stomach from acid indigestion and often pop an antacid to give yourself relief?

Whether it’s a chew or a pill, over the counter or prescription, you are creating a pattern of suppressing the acids that your body needs for healthy digestion.  Chronic users are constantly on the merry go round, knowing they are going to eat, experience acid indigestion and take an antacid.  Many people take them several times a day, exceeding the “recommended dosage” and thinking these are harmless.

Well, they are not harmless.  Quite often, you don’t have an overproduction of acid, you have an underproduction of stomach acids, which essentially causes starvation in your body as the nutrients, enzymes, vitamins etc. that are necessary to keep your gut healthy and digesting properly, cannot do their job because they are halted to a STOP by an ANT-ACID!

The word Antacid translates –  Antiagainst, opposite of.  When referring to your stomach acids it’s saying against acids.

Some symptoms of low stomach acids: burning immediately after eating; burping, bloating, feeling full after a small quantity of food, peeling fingernails, hair loss, gas in the upper abdomen.  Low stomach acid has been associated with eczema, rheumatoid arthritis, weak adrenals, rosacea, chronic hepatitis and thyroid issues and more.

If you are chronic, get tested for low stomach acid (HYPOCHLORHYDRIA) and don’t forget “Be Your Own Doctor”.  Ask questions, investigate and take control of your health!

To find out more, check out a book called “Why Stomach Acid is Good for You” by Johnathan V. Wright M.D and Lane Lenard, Ph.D.  You just may be surprised you are not suffering from acid reflux, acid indigestion and heartburn after all.

 

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Why You Should Own House Plants & What They May Do For Your Health

If you are like many people who do not want the added pressures of having to keep your indoor plants alive, watered and loved, you need to read this and see why YOU should have live plants in your home.  Yes, Yes, Yes!  Live Plants ROCK!

 

Let’s take a look at the benefits of having live plants and your health.  Research shows Live Plants Provide:

Nature is your friend – Being in Nature and around Nature induces peacefulness & connects one to man and enhances spiritual connectedness

–Increases oxygenation & purifies your environment

–Helps to removes indoor environmental toxin

–Helps to neutralize indoor odors

According to “Psychology Today” and their research, Live Plants lower levels of Stress, Increase attentiveness, decrease High Blood Pressure, brightens your space which makes you feel happier and gives you a better spatial perception, Improve reaction times, Improve attendance to school and work.

Their studies used the following house plants consistently:

The Golden Pothos, Shown Above (Epipremnum aureum)                       

–Arrowhead Vine (Syngonium podophyllum)

–Chinese evergreen (Aglaonema sp.)                                            

Other plants that were used as well:

–Dracaena (various)

–Philodendron

–Snake plants (Sansevieria trifasciata)

–Peace Lilly (spathiphyllum starlight)

–Vinca Vines

As with all indoor plants, make sure that what’s good for your environment is not poisonous to your pets and small children.

Various studies have been done and some of the findings underway are very interesting!  Plants are smart!

–5 Ninth Grades students from Denmark have peaked the interest of scientists due to the results of their school experiment:  Seeds will not sprout and Plants will not grow next to Cellular Radiation and WIFI was the conclusion.  Read More here:  http://www.mnn.com/health/healthy-spaces/blogs/student-science-experiment-finds-plants-wont-grow-near-wi-fi-router

–Denmark Researchers found that Hospital Patients had lower levels of anxiety during recovery and in their rooms in general just by having live plants in their surroundings.

–Studies done on extrasensory perceptions of plants have shown that plants are telepathic and can anticipate when you are coming at them with scissors to trim their leaves, leaving them with anxiety and sending messages to other plants; Acacia trees release a gas when eaten by an animal, they convey a message to other trees nearby warning them.  Within moments the trees release a toxin and the leaves become poisonous, so the animal only grazes for a brief time so as not to become poisoned.

These are just a few examples of the brilliance plants/trees contain.  To learn more about plants and sensory perception and their relation to man, there’s an old book called “The Secret Life of Plants” by Peter Thompson and Christopher Bird. Very Interesting!!

In addition, studies have also shown that there is something to be said for the caring of live plants.  PLants make one feel cheery, they are helping to release the endorphins in the caregivers body. It’s a small gesture and yet so effective and proven by science to improve your well- being.   FYI:   Not only do I water my plants and love it,  (sometimes too much) but , you got it!  I also talk to them and clean their leaves every blue moon.  I have plants in almost every room!!

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Gratitude, not Attitude- Food for Your Soul

Gratitude not Attitude is really a philosophy that when practiced, reminds you that everything you need, you already have. This is not to negate that there are basics we need in this world to survive, it’s to help you see that what you seek, is available in a variety of ways to you and perhaps what you need doesn’t show up in the form in which you’ve expected.

When you enjoy what you are surrounded by, you do not wish for more.  You delight in what is right in front of you.  You live in the moment and feel the joy of the people around you or perhaps you are a better friend, better human in the world.

The best recipe for Gratitude, not Attitude is:

  • Stop right where you are
  • Breathe in all the positives
  • Appreciate the people in your life, past and present
  • Share your wisdom
  • Smile and be kind daily and remember your focus is being grateful for each opportunity that arrives

I like to begin my day with meditation.  I use the first 5-10 min. or so to focus on gratitude.  I do not wish for things I do not have, or didn’t get or want but I cannot have them.  I focus on the love I do have, the people in my life who are blessings, my son, my dog, my home, and creature comforts that make my life easier. I focus on a mantra I created for myself, honoring loving, gratitude I feel.

It’s not to say that I don’t have heartaches or challenges or obstacles that need to be overcome, it’s to say that I am not focusing on what I cannot change, however I am appreciating the positives, now.

Each night before you go to sleep, write down a few things you were grateful for throughout your day.  It can be as simple as being in gratitude to the person who asked “How are you today” to you having the opportunity to open a door for someone.  Daily Kindnesses.  It can be your child’s laugh or funny story, it can be a moment in nature that caught your eye and captured your heart.  The point is, reflect, feel and write.

Sincerely,
In Gratitude

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Some of My Favorite A’s

These are just a few of the A’s that I love so much!  Each A is a gift to my Palette and makes me oh so happy knowing that some of the seriously nutritious foods I eat begin with the very first letter in our Alphabet!

Almonds– A handful a day helps you receive about of quarter of your daily nutrients like calcium, magnesium, manganese, copper, potassium, selenium and they are high in fiber.  Don’t be concerned about the percentage of fat when label checking, almonds contain mostly healthy fat, the unsaturated kinds. They have been rumored to be good for your heart due to the Vitamin E content and good for your colon.  It’s also been mentioned that Almonds help give you a flat tummy! With those kinds of rumors, I think a handful a day is a good decision.

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Apples–  When you were growing up, maybe your mother said: An Apple a day, keeps the Doctor away. She may have been right!  Apples contain Pectin and Pectin is a fiber source that helps to reduce your cholesterol and keeps your colon working regularly.  Apples also have a small amount of Vitamin C and Potassium.  Plus, they are yummy and help to fill your tummy as a great mid-morning or afternoon snack!  *Apple skin is really good for you, however, the skin holds the pesticides, so make sure to use a good fruit wash or use the one recommended above.*Also, if you Juice your apples, you can actually include the seeds!

Apricots – This is one fruit that is loaded with Vitamin A!!  Vitamin A Beta Carotene, A- Carotenoid.  Vitamin A supports good vision and enough fruit containing Vitamin A can assist in preventing Macular Degeneration.  The smaller relative of the Peach also provides us with a healthy dose of Vitamin C. They are also a very fiber filled fruit which may be a gentler alternative for constipation.  Actually dried Apricots work like a natural laxative!  So, eat dried apricots for pleasure or eat them for a little help with mother nature, either way, pay attention to how many you have consumed or you could be running to the bathroom!
Artichokes – The dangerously pointed Vegetable is truly one of my all time fav’s.  It’s like hunting when you buy one, as you are rooting through, you are carefully picking your prey and determing which sharp tipped Artichoke will make into your bag home.  Did you capture this large Vegetable without meeting it’s one or more of it’s spikey leaves? Sounds fun huh?!  The Artichoke is at the top of the list for it’s fiber content, alittle over 10 grams. Your daily recommended amt. is anywhere from 20-30 grams.  Not a bad end to the day if you’re consuming these at dinnertime.  The Artichoke is also loaded with Vitamin C, Potassium (great for normal heart rythm), Magnesium, and believe it or not, they contain 4 grams of Protein!

Asparagus -A is for Aphrodisiac! Asparagus is a known libido booster!! Aside from it’s sexy qualities, it also contains Folate which is vital for helping to have healthy babies and proper functioning nervous systems. When paired with B12 is great for cognitive brain function and can help stave off aging brain symptoms.  Asparagus helps keep your Blood Pressure low, helps to prevent kidney stones and is an alkaline food which is necessary to keep your body in a healthy balance.  It’s loaded with antioxidants which as we know are important for fighting free radicals and may help to prevent cancer. Personally, for the Libido portion alone, this vegetable just got a little more attractive!

Avocado – Avocado how we love you so!  If you want healthy fats, this is a rich, creamy go to!!  This tough skinned Fruit, yes, Fruit, is loaded with Oleic Acid which has been known to help prevent breast cancer, plus with other cancer fighting compounds it’s been known to reduce, prostate and oral cancer as well.  The Carotoid Luten in Avocados is great for your eyes and Avocados contain 13 of the most important vitamins (A,B, C, D and K, etc.) your body needs. The next time you’re worried about fat content, just remember, this is the Healthy fat and if you have to choose between Cookies, Chips or an Avocado, go for the Avo! You just need a pinch of salt, pepper and a spoon!

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Soul, Rumi, Mystic & Love

Who was Rumi and why should we take to heart what he offers in words?

Rumi was a Passionate, Persian, Mystic and Theologian who in the 13th Century (Medieval times) spoke words of his love of God and the distance between them.  His writings have been translated through time and are considered spiritual and poetic throughout the world as he speaks the language of love.

When you lose all sense of self

the bonds of a thousand chains will vanish.

Lose yourself completely,

return to the root of the root

of your own soul ~

~Rumi~

His poems not only can be related to ones relationship with God, Spirit, Source, whatever you choose or not  choose to personalize, but his words are works that speak to the heart of man.  They are words of longing for your love, for your souls fire and words to express how deeply your passions entwine with another.

The reason I am posting this is because I believe we are longing to belong in the arms of a beloved, to ourselves.  Whether it be spiritual, physical world, or self fulfilled, we are longing to be deeply loved and the first step to loving another person or spirit or God, or whatever you feel, is knowing that we can love ourselves deserving, without longing and suffering. To love ourselves in this way first, to know you are enough and to focus on your loving aspects and what you have to offer can then become a beautiful marriage to Rumi’s words. Rumi’s words speak to each individual in a variety of ways and to apply such loving letters to yourself is to know you are embraced by love all around you. Your beloved is you and all that you are.  Your beloved is your faith.  Your beloved is your family. Your beloved are your friends, all humans, animals, nature, earth, sky, north, south, east, west.  Your beloved is that which is to be-loved by your hearts deepest desires, your soul.

*Self Care Mantra – I will Be-Loved from myself, as I am Love*

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Julie’s Spaghetti & Fire Recipe

Spaghetti is one of my favorite Italian dishes!  Sometimes I like to play with the recipes and add a little fire to the sauce to really give it a different feel.

 

spaghetti and fire by julie

 

Ingredients:

1 Tblspn Butter or Tblsn Coconut Oil

1 Yellow Onion or Vivaldi if you can find them – finely diced

2 Garlic Cloves – Minced

4-5 Roma Tomatoes – diced

1 can Muir Glen Fire Roasted diced Tomatoes – sometimes I chop these extra so it’s not so chunky

4 Crimini Mushrooms – Sliced Thin

4 Button Mushroom – Sliced Thin

Large Handful Kalamata Olives – halved

1 Tablespoon chopped parsley

1 teaspoon Red Pepper Flakes – add more if you like more fire

1/4 cup heavy cream

Parmesan Cheese

Sea Salt & Pepper

Few Basil Leaves- Chopped

Bay Leaf if you like a sweetness in your sauce

 

Directions:

Heat pan with Butter or Oil

Add Onion, Saute for a few minutes until soft

Add Garlic and saute for a minute more

Add Tomatoes, fresh and canned, mushrooms, olives, red pepper flakes, parsley, salt and pepper to taste, add bay leaf

Bring to a boil, then simmer for a few hours or at least one uncovered

Add heavy cream on simmer, mix well

Add a little fresh Basil on top and sprinkle with fresh Parmesan Cheese!

 

*Oh and hey, Don’t forget to make your spaghetti noodles about 15 minutes before done. Salt your water while water is heating up to a rolling boil. Add your noodles, turn down flame to medium high-ish – separate noodles  with a fork and wait alloted time on package!

You may add any meat that lights your fire!  We are meatless in this recipe!

Voila! Enjoy with a salad, french bread and a nice glass of Cabarnet!

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Why Lemon and Warm Water in the Morning?

What can Lemon Juice and Warm Water do for you? 

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Ritual Creation: Drink Warm Lemon Water with The Morning Sun

Well for starters drinking it in the morning will help your body get going.  By get going, I mean it alerts and awakens your lymph system, digestive system and the smell of lemon makes one feel refreshed.

Lemons naturally assist in hydration and staying hydrated helps you to avoid, adrenal fatigue (which I am working with right now). When your body is seriously lagging and is in a state of chronic dehydration, your adrenals cannot do their best to control your cortisol levels, which manages how you manage stress.  These two little glands are vital to keeping your body and mind in a top functioning state.

Lemons contain Vitamin C, an antioxidant, which helps to boost your immune system and keep your skin clear as it assists in ridding your body of toxins.

Lemons are an Alkaline Food which means they are not acidic.  One would think they are acidic because they are a citrus fruit, however they are an Alkaline which is needed to keep the body healthy and balanced.  Too much acidity knocks your body into a state of panic and it has to work overtime to fight off infections and illness of all kinds.

The Vibrant and Tangy Lemon is not to be overlooked!  Enjoy!

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Homemade Fruit and Vegetable Rinse

Need a natural and simple pesticide wash for your fruits and veggies?  

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Strawberries are loaded with Vitamin C, Manganese, Fiber, Folate and Iodine. However, due to their skins, they retain pesticides (even organic can have residue) and need to be cleaned.

To make a simple wash, get a spray bottle — fill it half way with distilled white vinegar and the other half with water. Shake it up and spray your fruits and vegetables and rinse with warm water.  For a more potent version, just add juice of 1 lemon and 1 tablespoon baking soda. Mix well!

This wash can be used as a spray and scrub and other times as a soak for produce like grapes, cherries and apples that have skin with vital nutrients and enzymes.

What are the top pesticide laden produce items around?

Apples

Berries; Strawberries, Blueberries, Raspberries

Celery

Cherries

Collard Greens

Grapes

Kale

Lettuce

Potatoes

Spinach

Sweet Bell Peppers

Tomatoes

Just remember if you cannot buy Organic, regularly clean your fruits and veggies. I use the simple spray even on the Organic produce and the more advanced one if I purchase non-organic, which is uber rare, but it has happened like 1x a year.

Happy Produce Cleaning!

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Oregano Oil and It’s Incredible Healing Powers!

OREGANO OIL, did I just fall off the Oregano Truck?  Why hadn’t I heard about this wonder oil before? A few summers back a friend of mine told me about Oregano Oil and how it is an immune system strengthener and that it was also good for several other healthy benefits, skin, etc.  So, being who I am, I went home and looked it up immediately, started talking to other people who had used this fragrant oil as well and I began to comprise a list of the pros and cons.   Let’s get started –

History:
Oregano Oil was used by Ancient Greeks, as well as some others. However, they were one of the first. The Greeks saw the medicinal value this oil had and how it affected their health.  It was used as an anti-fungal, pain reliever, anti-bacterial, an inflammation reducer and it was known to successfully fight infections, which I imagine with all their fighting, they needed a good natural remedy!

Hippocrates used Oregano as an Antiseptic, Respiratory Cure and Stomach Ailments. Hippocrates said “Let Food be thy Medicine and Let Medicine be thy Food”.   I think they were onto something!!

This herb is closely related to the Marjoram herb and is also known as wild Marjoram.

Pros:

Skin Issues -This oil helped to keep my Roseaca under control due to it’s ability to knock out organisms that were hard at work causing flare ups. I used this topically as well as in my tea. Once again, 2 drops was sufficient. Always read the instructions on the bottle as some tinctures recommend mixing with an oil.  This works great as well for skin infections and itchy skin.

Digestive Issues – Destroys organisms that supply fuel for tummy troubles.  I used 2 drops in some warm water with lemon or with tea for a calm and properly digesting system. Oregano Oil contains large properties of Thymol and Carvacrol. These relax your digestive system.

Immune System – Strengthens your system and since it’s working on your gut simultaneously, you are automatically improving your health. Your gut is the tell all of your health and your immune system. When your body is keeping mucous and your sinuses are feeling congested,  try Oregano Oil for 3-5 days and notice a breathing difference. Same for your lungs, feeling congested, a few drops in juice, tea, water, and voila! you should begin feeling better!

Cons:

Ladies! Oregano Oil has been said to reduce the bodies ability to absorb iron.  This caught my eye and immediately as many women are low in iron to begin with. So, if you are using this oil on a regular basis, you may want to take an iron supplement. PREGNANT WOMEN SHOULD NOT USE OREGANO OIL.  PREGNANT MOMMIES NEED IRON!

Some people have allergies to Oregano, Thyme, Mints and Basil.  These are all in the same family and could trigger an allergic reaction you didn’t count on! So, avoid!!   You may want to avoid Marjoram too!

I really like some Essential Oils’ Oregano and one you can buy at the market called P73.  As with any herb, oil, supplement, if you are not sure if its right for you, talk to a Naturopath or Holistic Dr. and get another opinion.

 

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Why Your Pet is Good For Your Soul xo

Posted on February 26, 2014

Your Pet Is Good For Your Soul

I caught myself saying this to my Dog one day, “you’re not boyfriend, you’re my Dog” as he licked my face while I was looking for food on the bottom shelf in the pantry.

This adorable little guy is good for my soul

What does that mean exactly you ask?  I don’t know really.  It made me think.  I guess it means that he fills a need for expression.  It means that my  generously loving and loyal dog that follows me around, protects me, listens to all woes, all my happy moments, shares in movie watching, music listening and sing alongs, hears every conversation I have on the phone, seems to enjoy everything I cook and loves to walk, likes to see some people, recluse it up a bit, sits quietly while I pretend I’m OK at expressing some form of artistic styling known as Art that perhaps a 1st grader painted, is lonely when I leave the house, always happy to see me when I get back, couldn’t eat dinner without me, enjoys when I have women friends over but not men so much, loves when I pet him, when I give him Reiki and loves when I kiss his furry little skull.  He could be my boyfriend, but the co-dependent type that’s hard to say no to because he so cute, hogs the bed with cuteness and really is a sweetheart. But he’s also jealous of my time, high maintenance and it’s often like caring for a toddler.

There are circumstances when the affection of an animal saves peoples spirits and keeps them from feeling too lonely, depressed and they provide many with comfort and someone to talk with and have as a presence around their home. Elderly people often have pets just for that reason. A dog or cat for that matter, although far more independent and borderline snobbish, while they are no replacement for human affection for more than 5 obvious reasons, must be celebrated! Our furry, unconditional loving companions are like children who need caring and nurturing and love to thrive.  We as humans, love to love.

So Cheers and Blessings all day long to these warm and loving friends and just remember, Love is Love, but grown up human love is the kind of love you can share without your clothes on!

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Quick! Ty Needs a Power Smoothie!

Posted on June 5, 2014

When my son needs energy, and I mean the type of energy that pushes you through into the night,  as he’s a teenager who has been working 13 hour days, socializing at night, graduating and functioning on limited resources,  I give him this!

 

2 Bananas

1 cup Frozen Blueberries

1 Tablespoon Honey Peanut Butter or Almont Butter

1 Wheatgrass shot

1 Handful Spinach

1 Teaspoon Local Bee Pollen

1 Dropper of Adrenal Support Tincture

1 Teaspoon Maca Powder

4-5 ice cubes

1/2 cup – 1 cup filtered / spring water

 

Pop in the high speed blender and vroom vroom!  Pour in a glass and enjoy!

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Afternoon Chia Delight!

~Easy as can be and loaded with Omega 3’s and Fiber ~

1 Eight ounce Glass of Water, spring or filtered
1 Tablespoon Chia Seeds
1/2 Juice from a lime

*some people enjoy a splash of cranberry as well   –   Just take a handful of cranberries and blend, crush and squeeze the juice or juice them to add a little punch!

The Chia Seed provides you with plenty of Omega 3’s, Omega 6’s, and 5 Grams of Fiber.  All important to maintaining a healthy balance in your body.

The Lime is a wonderful source of Vitamin C which of course helps to keep your Immune System STRONG! Also, the lime has been studied for it’s cancer fighting powers as well!   This is an alkaline fruit.

*Cranberries are known for their protection against Urinary Tract Infections, also contain Vitamin C and being studies continuously for their healing properties in the stomach lining and urinary tract.   These are an acidic fruit.

Enjoy!

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