Tuesday, October 31, 2006
though you can conquer enemies, lead armies, entice lovers. ~Emily Luchetti
With the rise of Christianity, Samhain was changed to Hallowmas, or All Saints' Day, to commemorate the souls of the blessed dead who had been canonized that year, so the night before became popularly known as Halloween, All Hallows Eve, or Hollantide. November 2nd became All Souls Day, when prayers were to be offered to the souls of all who the departed and those who were waiting in Purgatory for entry into Heaven. Throughout the centuries, pagan and Christian beliefs intertwine in a gallimaufry of celebrations from Oct 31st through November 5th, all of which appear both to challenge the ascendancy of the dark and to revel in its mystery.
In the country year, Samhain marked the first day of winter, when the herders led the cattle and sheep down from their summer hillside pastures to the shelter of stable and byre. All the harvest must be gathered in -- barley, oats, wheat, turnips, and apples -- for come November, the faeries would blast every growing plant with their breath, blighting any nuts and berries remaining on the hedgerows. It was a joyous time of family reunion, when all members of the household worked together baking, salting meat, and making preserves for the winter feasts to come. http://www.celticspirit.org/samhain.htm
Family, Traditions & Treats! Traditions are rich in family ties. Many times we create them without even realizing it. Other times we choose traditions to begin on our own and let them evolve as our families and friendships grow. In our family, we always cook up a batch of hearty chili and cornbread on Halloween night! Amongst the flurry of dressing up, arranging the goodie bags and sometimes homework, we share the treats from our day, read our favorite book and call those we love that are far away.
So, eat good wholesome foods and enjoy your family and friends! If you don't sugar up, you will feel so much better the next day. Just enjoy a bite of temptation, it is not about deprivation. You can also substitute the wicked white sugar beast with more natural treats. Whether homemade or from your local market, check out your options. Enjoy! ~j
Sunday, October 29, 2006
Friday, October 27, 2006
Thursday, October 26, 2006
KYOTO AND BEYOND
When faced with a grave threat to a livable future for ourselves, our children and future generations, it is our duty as Americans to respond. - How Hot Does It Have To Get?
If you aren't aware of the devastating effects of global warming, it might be time to take a peek. Katrina put a face on it for us, hopefully some of us recognize it. The news continues to report overwhelming statistics on events and damage that is ocurring world wide. It does effect us, but it will impact or children and grandchildren even more. It is time to become aware, at the very least. If you want to take it a step further, consider signing the petition. Your steps are your own, they can go as far as you want to.
Many Americans are concerned and want to take action, but the government is lagging behind in their interest on this matter. 163 other nations have ratified the Kyoto Protocol (see links below for details, it is short and to the point). According the Energy Action, http://energyaction.org/do/Home, many cities in the USA are already adopting action to support renewable energy, but we are not yet united as a nation regarding this issue. Wouldn't it be nice to know what the simple things that you can do as a famiy and in your community?
One of those things is, yep, you are going be so tired of hearing me say it...local, sustainable foods. Believe it or not, you likely spend as much $$ on the fuel that transports food across the country or from other countries as you do to fuel your automobile each year. It's true. It is hidden in the cost of your food.
Breath is the bridge which connects life to consciousness, which unites your body to your thoughts.
Thich Nhat Hanh
Breathing is one of those things that we completely take for granted. It happens all the time without us having to even think about it. Well, so many of us do not give the breathe enough credit. It assists in carrying oxygen throughout the body which has many physiological effects. It can help lower your heart rate, calm you in an uncomfortable situation or in a situation of excitement.
The point is, we as a society are shallow breathers. We only bring air in to the chest and then let it go. We should be bringing that air in down to the abdominal area or diaphram brathing. Yes, it takes longer by a second or so, but you've got the time!
There is so much more on the significance of the breath and breathing. I will have to revisit it later. If you have an opportunity to take a yoga class, this is a great place to learn about it. Just ask my buddy Scott.
You can also just take a couple of minutes a day and do some breathing exercises before you get out of bed in the morning. It will improve your health. You lungs are one of the elimination channels and trapped toxins escape through the breath.
The breath helps still your mind and gives you a sense of calm that we often rush off and forget. You know it's true, when you take a deep breath, it is usually because something is about to happen or you are trying to rebalance from something big that just has.
Action for today:
Take a couple of minutes to try one or more of the breathing exercises in the link below. When you know why breath is so important to your health and how to kick it up a notch, you will ejoy the rewards :-)
Wednesday, October 25, 2006
I believe in you, and I believe in your destiny. ~Kahlil Gibran
Every day we have the blessing to start fresh, new and it is time to acknowledge how BIG that is. If you are trying to make postitive changes in your life and you find that you stumble a little here and there, well, that's part of life. You will keep trying until you are strong enough to make it through. That is called growth.
We are all here for a purpose, whether you know what that purpose is or not. If you look, it will be plain as day. Clearing the body of weight, toxins and other debris opens up the flow. Gives you increased physical health so that you can focus on things that are bigger in the big picture.
Below is a link that will help you on your way. There is a short video clip at the bottom, kind of a 'how to' to eating fresh, local and sustainable, recipe at the end. You may have very little time for cooking, but just changing one meal a day will impact your health, your community and ultimately the politics of food. Plus, you just might enjoy it.
- Sustainable Kitchen - runs about 8 minutes
In health ~j
Tuesday, October 24, 2006
"The definition of success--To laugh much; to win respect of intelligent persons and the affections of children; to earn the approbation of honest critics and endure the betrayal of false friends; to appreciate beauty; to find the best in others; to give one's self; to leave the world a little better, whether by a healthy child, a garden patch, or a redeemed social condition.; to have played and laughed with enthusiasm, and sung with exultation; to know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived--this is to have succeeded."-- Ralph Waldo Emerson
Monday, October 23, 2006
"The pursuit of truth and beauty is a sphere of activity in which we are permitted to remain children all our lives."-- Albert Einstein
Friday, October 20, 2006
In health ~j
Thursday, October 19, 2006
This is about the humane treatment and environmental impact of meats in our country.
So what is this real foods thing all about? Well, the real thing is not coca-cola, for those of you raised in the 70's! God designed us in an amazing and intricate fashion. In a nutshell, our bodies were meant to eat from nature to provide fuel to our cells which in turn run the metabolic machine that keeps us going.
Things like chemicals, food dyes, pesticides, herbicides, plastic, trans fats, fake sugar and such actually clog, congest and confuse our internal body functions. This is generally what the Standard American Diet (SAD) is made up of. This is why so many people feel crummy and are on one or more prescription drugs, act crummy- depressed, angry, unpleasant disposition and are generally cranky butts - stuck in their lives watching reality tv, gossiping about others, no sex drive, hate the neighbor and never really smile. Most of us know there is a problem out there, but what can we do about it. Well, we can WAKE UP and get informed. We have been trained and misinformed on so many things. The media has educated us brilliantly. Now it is time to think for ourselves.
The basics for healthy food choices:
- eat foods that are fresh, seasonal, local and in their closest to natural state.
- eat foods that are grass-fed, pasture raised, without hormones or antibiotics
- eat foods that are free from chemicals, food dyes and pesticides
- eat foods that are local organic over industrial organic - yes, there is also a war going on inside the organic world these days...the point is to be conscious and not get hung up on it.
- eat foods that are non-GMO and non-irradiated, this is huge, you midwesterners...how much corn and soy do you see along the side of the road in your community?
- eat foods that support sustainable agriculture and reduce your ecological footprint
Most of these things you have already heard of, but maybe don't know how to transition in your home. That is our journey. We have to start at the beginning.
Where does your food come from. Most of it comes from processing plants and factories far far away. It takes more fuel to get it here than you put in your car on a weekly basis. It was once food, but has been denatured or ripped apart and put back together...kind of like Frankenstien. The difference is, our food gets dressed up real pretty with shapes and colors and packaging before it goes out in public, but Franky, well, you've seen him.
Sustainable - Sustainable agriculture integrates three main goals--environmental health, economic profitability, and social and economic equity.
Translation - Sustainable agriculture is a way of raising food that is healthy for consumers and animals, does not harm the environment, is humane for workers and animals, provides a fair wage to the farmer, and supports and enhances communities.
If we don't get our food from 'home' or our local community we will become dependent on other countries for our basic survival. Sounds extreme, but look at what happened with the ecoli spinach ordeal. One location, one mishap, one big deal. Are you ready to make a change?
Action for today:
Look up your local grocer. You will find farmers markets, farms and stores from the links below. Maybe take a field trip in and see what it looks like. This is only the tip of the iceberg. There may be stores like Trader Joe's and Whole Foods in your area too, but they usually won't come up on this site. It doesn't mean they aren't good, it just means that they are a chain. We are looking for options.
Wednesday, October 18, 2006
Chew on that for a moment...though not food related, today's thought is about trying something new. I was inspired by my little bro to trek out on a trail run for the first time. Fortunately, a mile or so down the road there is a forest, the Elfin Forest Reserve has miles of trails for me to explore. Now...I found myself excited at the prospect of this little side bar because since moving to San Diego I have found myself mostly enjoying the ocean. Well, it took me less than a quarter of a mile to splash through a creek and consider each and every noise a rattlesnake with his buddy the mountain lion just behind! What is up with that?
Finding a spot to contemplate, I finally was able to still the racket in my head. Where did this invisible fear come from? I have hiked miles through trails in the past. Just because I was alone and this was new territory...hmmmm a metaphor for life, a reflection for later. Please note, I did call a girlfriend 500 miles away to tell her that if she didn't hear from me later that day, well, I was somewhere in the Elfin Forest. Since I haven't seen any headlines in the news like...MOTHER FOUND RAVAGED BY SNAKES, LIONS AND POISION OAK AT LOCAL TRAIL, CHILD LEFT AT SCHOOL FEELING ABANDONED...I felt compelled to proceed.
It was wonderful. Fresh, open, free, different. So why do we place those fears and restrictions on ourselves? Many of them are not tangible. What excuses do we use to retreat rather than rejoice. This is a great place to start as it relates to real. You have to want to go for it and be open to new things. ~j
Tuesday, October 17, 2006
Okay, getting all of this started is quite the deal...now, delving into the unknown blogging world, some of my friends would say I am not, in a word, savvy, but we are on our way.
First I have to start this by saying:
I believe that God created each of us with our own unique physical attributes and biochemical design, a mind that has limitless capacity and a spirit that can reach deeply into the soul to find great joy, great sorrow, great compassion and great love. Life is a journey and if you are still here, there is a reason.
I believe that health is comprised of finding your balance of body, mind and spirit. How you find that is determined by how far down the rabbit hole you are willing to go.
It should be simple, but man has complicated nature and the results to the human body and ecology are devastating for many. I live in the real world with a family, job and a passion to educate. I do not claim to know everything, but find what is right for me. We all have choices and my goal is to provide information so that you can consider your options. No information contained here should be construed as medical advice.
Wake up! We all have choices! Though you may not live in my local area, most of the foundational information here will be true for yours. So, please take what you like and grow with it!