As a peaceful warrior, I would choose when, where and how I would behave.
With that commitment, I began to live the life of a warrior.
~Dan Millman

Sunday, December 30, 2007

What I am doing today is important because I am exchanging a day of my life for it. ~Unknown

A few tidbits of inspiration as we wind down the year! ~j

When your to-do list gets overwhelming, there's a natural way to figure out your next step. Tune into this gentle process.
By Jennifer Louden

It's mid-morning, and several minor crises have already derailed you. Your plan for the day is in shambles, your to-do list feels like a boulder around your neck, and all you want to do is hide. You’re reaching for a diet Coke or more coffee in the hopes that it will give you the energy to decide which item on your list to tackle. Then you remember that there’s another way. You make the choice.

You feel your feet connecting with the ground beneath you. You take a deep breath and reach your arms overhead, exhaling with a huge sigh. You put your hand on your heart and recall feeling balanced and flowing, trusting the flow of life. You gently ask, "What choice feels the easiest in this moment?" You visualize yourself bringing this question into your heart, and take a breath or two to infuse it with flow and peace. Perhaps a brief image of your sister comes to mind. Or maybe you hear a refrain of an old song, and when you focus on it, you realize it reminds you of your sister. Or perhaps you remember the feeling of your sister hugging you. You call your sister, have a lovely chat, and when you get off the phone, you have new energy —enough to move you forward to the next task awaiting you.

Faith is connected to hope and hope means believing in spite of the evidence and then watching the evidence change.

Do you begin to see to get the picture of how this approach flows with life? I’m not proposing you sell your worldly possessions and move to the woods to live in an unheated yurt. I’m not recommending you consult crystals or the I Ching before moving a muscle. What I am saying is that when you think you’re lost, overwhelmed, and without direction, you do “know” what to do to restore your balance and your direction–but it’s a different kind of knowing, one you already possess, and need only be reminded of how to access.

This is part of the process I call "Life Organizing." It's infinitely richer than plotting your days in 15-minute increments in your day planner, but it does require trusting your own experiences. It involves a quick in-the-moment check-in that lowers your stress while allowing you to move beyond your conscious mind and respond with creativity and intuition to challenges and opportunities. Here are some of the check-in steps from the example above:

1. Connect: Move your body – breathe deeper, stretch your arms overhead, step outside and feel the breeze on your skin- anything that connects you with your life energy.

2. Feel: Tune into your heart, which can give you information your head can’t. Simply put your attention on your heart, perhaps by placing your hand there. Recall a time in which you felt loved and appreciated or loving and appreciative toward someone else. Linger there for a few seconds.

3. Inquire: Ask a mindful question. This opens up possibilities you literally couldn’t see before. In the first example, the mindful question was: What choice feels the easiest in this moment? Another of my favorite questions: What do I need to know right now?

4. Allow: To allow is simply trusting that by connecting, feeling, and inquiring, you will hear or see or feel or sense what your next step is—and only your next step.. Allowing is not about belief: it’s about noticing your experience and opening to your next step, allowing love, inspiration, and knowing to come into your body and heart, to inform and direct you.

Friday, December 07, 2007

On Self Knowledge ~Kahlil Gibran

And a man said, Speak to us of Self-Knowledge.

And he answered, saying:
Your hearts know in silence the secrets of the days and the nights.
But your ears thirst for the sound of your heart's knowledge.
You would know in words that which you have always known in thought.
You would touch with your fingers the naked body of your dreams.

And it is well you should.
The hidden well-spring of your soul must needs
rise and run murmuring to the sea;
And the treasure of your infinite depths
would be revealed to your eyes.
But let there be no scales to weigh your unknown treasure;
And seek not the depths of your knowledge
with staff or sounding line.
For self is a sea boundless and measureless.

Say not, "I have found the truth"
but rather, "I have found a truth."
Say not, "I have found the path of the soul."
Say rather, "I have met the soul walking upon my path."
For the soul walks upon all paths.
The soul walks not upon a line, neither does it grow like a reed.
The soul unfolds itself, like a lotus of countless petals.

Thanks Jeff for reminding me that sometimes the message is not about me! We are all connected at a very deep level. Busy or not, there is always a little time for sharing. I value and enjoy that those of you who do drop in just might be on the same page that I am today. Thanks!
With the busy-ness of the season upon us, it is an incredible time hear that you would know in words that which you have always known in thought. How often do you find yourself completely wrapped up in your head. For me it is usually while I am driving and then, once the destination has been reached, poof. I feel like Chicken Little, 'what were we talking about again?'!
Roaming unencumbered in the place inside that is free, fearless, creative and soulful, honestly I find it magical. This time of year often brings emotions and memories from years gone by, or reflection upon our dreams and aspirations of the future. Don't let them slip back into the depths! Allow those petals to unfold even if just a little. Reveal a little more of your soul today, if not to the world, to yourself!
And smile, you are on your path! ~j

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

"It is the Law that any difficulties that can come to you at any time,
no matter what they are,
must be exactly what you need most at the moment,
to enable you to take the next step forward by overcoming them.
The only real misfortune, the only real tragedy,
comes when we suffer without learning the lesson."
~ Emmet Fox
Thank you, thank you for your emails and notes. Things are a little busy these days and as fun as this is...have to take a break!
Thoughts for the moment:
  • Keep asking the questions.
  • Eat delicious healthy foods.
  • Find your 'thing' that inspires you.
  • Take a deep breath.
  • Enjoy life!
Blessings ~j

Saturday, September 22, 2007

"Feeling gratitude and not expressing it is like wrapping a present and not giving it."

~William Arthur Ward

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Okay gang. You must be getting tired of these news clips. I am. Here's the deal.


Have a nice day! ~j

ps. yes, this is a beautiful picture of ecoli.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

" Fear not for the future,
weep not for the past."
~ Percy Bysshe Shelley

Stronger Than You Know
Getting Ourselves Worked Up
Great little OM today gang! I completely identify with the moment of truth. All of this 'stress' though non-physical has significant impact on the Hypothalamus Pituitary Adrenal axis (HPA) and yes you have one! I have seen it many times hinder the health of my clients. So take to heart the value of coping or stress reducing options. Your adrenal glands, immune and digestive systems will all be thankful. As noted...we are almost always stronger and more capable than we believe ourselves to be. Find your warrior within.
Here's to the moment of truth~ ~j

Our capacity to cope successfully with life's challenges far outstrips our capacity to feel nervousness. Yet in the weeks, days, and hours leading up to an event that we believe will test our limits, we can become nervous. While we may have previously regarded ourselves as equal to the trials that lie ahead, we reach a point at which they near and our anxiety begins to mount. We then become increasingly worked up, until the moment of truth arrives and we discover that our worry was all for nothing. We are almost always stronger and more capable than we believe ourselves to be. But anxiety is not rational in nature, which means that in most cases we cannot work through it using logic as our only tool. Reason can help us recognize the relative futility of unwarranted worry but, more often than not, we will find more comfort in patterns of thought and activity that redirect our attention to practical or engaging matters.

Most of us find it remarkably difficult to focus on two distinct thoughts or emotions at once, and we can use this natural human limitation to our advantage when trying to stay centered in the period leading up to a potentially tricky experience. When we concentrate on something unrelated to our worry—such as deep breathing, visualizations of success, pleasurable pursuits, or exercise—anxiety dissipates naturally. Meditation is also a useful coping mechanism as it provides us with a means to ground ourselves in the moment. Our guides can aid us by providing us with a focal point wholly outside of our own sphere.

The intense emotional flare-up you experience just before you are set to challenge yourself is often a mixture of both excitement and fear. When you take steps to eliminate the fear, you can more fully enjoy the excitement. Though you may find it difficult to avoid getting worked up, your awareness of the forces acting on your feelings will help you return to your center and accept that few hurdles you will face will be as high as they at first appear.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted.
~Matthew 5:4

I know that every year when this date comes around I feel at a loss. How to adequately honor and acknowledge the people and this event that has impacted so many lives. What a great opportunity. In remembrance. ~j


NEW YORK - On Sept. 11, Jacob Sundberg of San Antonio has pledged to make eye contact and smile at everyone he meets. Kaitlin Ulrich will bring goody baskets to the police and fire departments in and around Philadelphia. And 100 volunteers from New York – 9/11 firefighters and family members among them – are going to Groesbeck, Texas, to rebuild a house destroyed by a tornado last December.

This is a minute sampling of the hundreds of thousands of people who have pledged to memorialize those killed on 9/11 by doing something good for others.
The heroic acts of all those killed trying to save others that September morning has spawned a growing grass-roots movement. The goal is to ensure that future generations remember not just the horror of the attacks, but also the extraordinary outpouring of humanity during the days, weeks, and months that followed.

Thursday, September 06, 2007

"I think a life in music is a life beautifully spent,
and this is what I have devoted my life to."
~Luciano Pavarotti

With thoughts of happiness for the joy that he shared and honoring his passion for the music in life. ~j

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

What this power is I cannot say;
all I know is that it exists and it becomes available only
when a man is in that state of mind in which he know exactly what he wants
and is fully determined not to quit until he finds it."
~Alexander Graham Bell

Get focused! What is it that has been lingering along with all of the other things in your life? That one thing that has just been hanging there.

Well, as we move in to Autumn and try to stretch the lingering days of summer just a little longer, think about your 'thing'.

Alexander here is really talking about a passionate focus. But maybe yours isn't so passionate right now. Maybe you need a little boost in that direction. Because sometimes it only takes a little tweak to change your whole life. When you are excited, the people around you get excited, your family, your coworkers, friends or someone on the street who receives a smile because you just can't hold one back.

For me, spreading the word about a healthy lifestyle really makes a difference. Showing people how to make little changes that might save them the inconvenience of medication or discomfort down the road. Add to that some exercise with fun attached and most people find a vigor for life that they forgot was possible.

So...maybe you choose art or yoga or walking, a 10k run or triathlon, Egyptian hieroglyphic studies or other ancient cultures, dust off that 'thing' and get focused. It just might make you smile!

In that state of mind! ~j

Friday, August 31, 2007

Do what you can, with what you have, where you are. ~Theodore Roosevelt

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

"Today I live in the quiet, joyous expectation of good."
~ Ernest Holmen

Funny...these last few days I have found rather challenging. But a good challenge is helpful to put things in perspective. Still, it can be a pain in the rear too. So, today with good intentions of getting it all straight and leaving nothing with a sour taste, I started my very busy day.

Trying to fit all of life in can be difficult. So when I realized that I had forgotten an important pair of shoes for a much needed workout I had scheduled in so carefully to my day, I was pretty down. I had things so tight that I knew I didn't even have time to stop somewhere and fork over the extra $$ it would likely cost to pick up a new pair. Bummer.

Now this may not seem like much of a big deal, but with all of the other areas of my life not quite buttoned up as I like them, the control freak part of me started to peak out from under the darkness and rear its ugly head. I was 3 days behind and have made a commitment to myself that I was falling short of. Balance in my life is vital goal that I strive to create. My family, my work and time for myself are all so important to me that when one veers, they all seem to scream for attention. So...

The universe seems to work wonders. I am finding new meaning in the concept of surrender. Not an easy topic for me personally. My last appt finished early and I was able to hop out and take care of the shoe situation. Now, in reflection, was this a critical issue? I could have pushed things out another day, sure. But my lesson was that I cannot always do it all. I cannot always plan it all and I most certainly cannot always execute on cue. Life happens. So instead of blowing it out of proportion I surrendered internally and was provided with a small gift, the gift of time, to live in the joyous expectation of what in my life for the moment was good. If I did this more often with really important issues, I can now see that these gifts will continue to become reality.

In expectation good! ~j

Saturday, August 25, 2007

"Perfection is devastated by failure,
while excellence learns from failure."
~ Denis Waitley

There is always controversy following the topic of milk. I prefer no to drink any form of cows milk. However if it is your choice to do so, raw is a much better way to go.

Here is a great summary from an article Mike Adams, The Health Ranger shared with OCA recently. For the full article, please see link! My only addition is Seasame milk. Made just as simply as Almond has an amazing natural mineral content that truly nourishes strong bones and a healthy body. Enjoy! ~j

What's Best? Soy Milk, Cow's Milk, Raw Milk and Fermented Milk (Kefir)

Mike's Milk Matrix
Okay, here's the low down on milk products and milk alternatives as I see it:

Soy milk: Not recommended. Too many GMO soybeans, bad environmental impact and some possible undesirable estrogen effects. The isoflavones are good for preventing cancer, however.

Processed cow's milk: It's just gross. Homogenized, pasteurized, milked from unhealthy cows and containing alarmingly high levels of pus, this liquid is nothing less than frightening. Flee it.

Raw cow's milk (organic): This is an acceptable dairy beverage. If it's from healthy cows treated with kindness and good nutrition, this raw beverage is far better than processed cow's milk.

Raw goat's milk (organic): Even better than raw cow's milk, since the goat's milk is easier to digest and more compatible with human nutritional needs.

Fermented milk from cows or goats (organic Kefir): A great choice! It's alive, nutritious and great for digestive health. Make it yourself for best results. If you buy it, avoid the sugared-up kefir products in the store.

Raw almond milk: A top choice for vegans, one of my favorite beverages. Make it yourself with raw almonds, water a nut milk bag and a blender.


Friday, August 24, 2007

"It is the nature of man to rise to greatness if greatness is expected of him."
~John Steinbeck

Hi gang! Took a little time off to visit the beautiful state of Oregon. WOW! What another world. We enjoyed a fabulous girls weekend connecting the generations of women in our girls getting dirty style. We 'camped' at a treesort. It was amazing. Out-N-About treesort, check them out online if you are ever in the area. Very fun for all ages. Lots of trees, lots of dirt, lots of fun!

Horseback riding, rafting and zip line trips were all on the agenda. Yikes! Climbing 50 ft to ride the ropes on the way down. Now that was fun!

We packed in some delicious meals and found some wonderful local resources as well, farmers markets, local farmers etc. So....the moral of the story, you can still play hard, have fun and eat healthy no matter where you are. Sometimes you just have to keep your eyes open! And while you are at just might plant the seed for others to enjoy health and vitality along the way.

With such a devestating rise in obesity, cancer and heart disease, you really can't afford not to. Our healthcare system is failing the general population and I don't know about you, but I don't see our politicians getting it done these days. Become empowered and take your health seriously by taking healthy choices into your own hands.

Zipity do it! ~j

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Okay gang. Water is crucial to health. Now with that said, get rid of the plastic bottles. Invest in Naglene (#7 bio plastic, no plastic leakage) or Stainless Steal container. You can even get them sized for your kids lunchboxes. They aren't just for hikers, backpackers and outdoor enthusiasts. You sports fanatics...fill a few, keep them cool in your vehicle for post workout or event hydration. If you can't always do that, don't feel guilty, drink from the plastic bottle, but make it the exception and not the rule. Being prepared helps you and the environment.
Keep it simple. ~j

Below is an excerpt from NYTimes on this topic. Not terribly informative, but more contemplative.
In the last few months, bottled water — generally considered a benign, even beneficial, product — has been increasingly portrayed as an environmental villain by city leaders, activist groups and the media. The argument centers not on water, but oil. It takes 1.5 million barrels a year just to make the plastic water bottles Americans use, according to the Earth Policy Institute in Washington, plus countless barrels to transport it from as far as Fiji and refrigerate it.

Bottled water has now overtaken coffee and milk in sales nationally, and is catching up with beer. To some, it’s an affordable luxury. To others, a healthy alternative to sugary drinks.
AND so people who had come to consider bottled water a great convenience, or even a mark of good taste, are now casting guilty glances at their frosty drinks.

Sunday, August 12, 2007

Man's mind, once stretched by a new idea,
never regains its original dimensions.
~Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr.

Thursday, August 09, 2007

Law of Surrender - a little nugget from Dan Millman

Life unfolds as it will, not always according to our wishes or desires. The wisest among us retain our balance while surfing the waves of change. We float without resistance down even the most powerful rivers. Accepting the inevitability of change, applying flexibility and acceptance, we remain centered in the eye of the cyclone.

Raise a fresh juice glass to keeping the balance! ~j

Tuesday, August 07, 2007

You're only given a little spark of madness.
You mustn't lose it.
~Robin Williams
Our lives are punctuated by celebrations and ceremonies that help us define and separate our walk through life. When we mark and share the important moments of our lives with others, we give our memories greater significance and weight so that they can echo through time to create our own history made up of stories to share with the generations to come. They help us solidify our identities and our connections. We gain witnesses to our accomplishments and validation for what we’ve achieved, whether it is status or age. By celebrating together, we walk through life together, supporting and encouraging each other as we go. Today, with or without a good reason, you can feel free to celebrate life in its small and large moments and to enjoy those people in your life who make it worth celebrating.
Celebrate, whatever your occassion. ~j

Monday, August 06, 2007

"Just don't give up trying to do what you really want to do.
Where there is love and inspiration,
I don't think you can go wrong."
~Ella Fitzgerald

Have an amazing day! ~j

Friday, August 03, 2007

A politician thinks of the next election,
a statesman, of the next generation.
~James Freeman Clarke (1810 - 1888)

If you think that your vote doesn't count...please, think again. The time to be informed is now. It's time to pay attention.

This is a small list of articles that I came across while checking in. I am amazed at how this small selection represents so many and the significance of each of them. Take your own browse through they are all linked to the articles.

Forget the Farm Bill: For Now, Local Politics is the Way to Effect Ag-Policy Change
Straight to the Source

Are There Antibiotics in Your Lettuce?

Unsafe Levels of Chemical BPA from Plastic Bottles Leaching into Drinks, U.S. Panel Says

More Bad PR for China with Massive Recall of Kids' Toys Contaminated with Lead Paint

Monsanto Goes GMO-Free - in its Cafeteria

Well, here is a smart option! It just doesn't have to be this hard. There is no reason for all of this craziness. Eat local, as local as you can. Eat fresh seasonal foods, they taste better and are better for you. Kick back and avoid the instanity that is whirling around. Knowlegde is power. Peace of mind regarding your food's all about the information. To make a change will voice your opinion louder than screaming. Where you put your $$ is heard loud and clear. Good for us!

Fair Trade Certified Food, Beverage Sales Soaring

Going local! ~j

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

A Reason To Smile
Five Minutes To Happiness

Enjoy a littl om, it is a fabulous day today! ~j

It can be so easy to get caught up in the rigors of modern life that we tend to forget that happiness need not come with stipulations. Happiness becomes something we must schedule and strive for—a hard-won emotion—and then only when we have no worries to occupy our thoughts. In reality, overwhelming joy is not the exclusive province of those with unlimited time and no troubles to speak of. Many of the happiest people on earth are also those coping with the most serious challenges. They have learned to make time for those simple yet superb pleasures that can be enjoyed quickly and easily. Cultivating a happy heart takes no more than five minutes. The resultant delight will be neither complex nor complicated, but it will be profound and will serve as a reminder that there is always a reason to smile.

So much that is ecstasy-inducing can be accomplished in five minutes. Alone, we can enjoy an aromatic cup of our favorite tea, take a stroll through the garden we have created, write about the day's events in a journal, doodle while daydreaming, or breathe deeply while we listen to the silence around us. In the company of a good friend or treasured relative, we can share a few silly jokes, enjoy a waltz around the room, play a fast-paced hand of cards, or reconnect through lighthearted conversation. The key is to first identify what makes us dizzyingly happy. If we do only what we believe should bring us contentment, our five minutes will not be particularly satisfying. When we allow ourselves the freedom to do whatever brings us pleasure, five minutes out of 14 wakeful hours can brighten our lives immeasurably.

It is often when we have the least free time or energy to devote to joy that we need to unwind and enjoy ourselves the most. Making happiness a priority will help you find five minutes every day to indulge in the things that inspire elation within you. Eventually, your happiness breaks will become an established part of your routine. If you start by pursuing activities you already enjoy and then gradually think up new and different ways to fill your daily five minutes of happiness, you will never be without something to smile about.

Monday, July 30, 2007

"Watermelon ~
it's a good fruit. You eat, you drink, you wash your face."
~Enrico Caruso

The Wonderful Amazing Watermelon

Dr. Ann Wigmore states in her book Be Your Own Doctor, “The watermelon rind has the richest proteins, vitamins, and minerals. Vitamins A, B, and C are found in the rind, along with their respective enzymes and other elements. Melons aid in the elimination of uric acid, and are beneficial to the urinary tract, bladder and kidney.“The ‘water of life’ is found in abundance in watermelons, and they will prove to be the safest means of cleaning the body’s waste, while at the same time providing nourishment. Watermelon is a wonderful aid for the person with an acid condition, as it helps balance the body to becoming more alkaline.”

So, why not enjoy this natural cleanser for your body. You can have a detox elixir via the delicious watermelon juice. The juice is so refreshing, sweet and soooo tasty, it is the REAL THING, for pennies to a glass.

Drinking only watermelon juice for a couple days can be an incredible cleanser. It does wonders to the skin and overall well-being.

However, if this does not inspire you to go out and get a watermelon, you might want to see what else you can do with a watermelon: click at the link to check out watermelon art, amazing -

Slurp! If you are nt a juicer, just enjoy a slice or two as a refreshing treat. ~j

Sunday, July 29, 2007

My advice to you is not to inquire why or whither,
but just to enjoy your ice cream while it's on your plate.
~Thornton Wilder
Oh! I love ice cream. Now I enjoy the dairy free version and relish every nibble.
If you would love nothing more that a simple taste of fresh and flavorful, just freeze your fruit of choice and run it through the homogenizer on your juicer or give it a spin in the blender (Vita-Mix is my choice, but any high power blender will do). A delicious treat with a creamy texture is your reward. No cream needed.
Keeping it cool. ~j
Here's how to do it:
Take fresh, raw, ripe mangos. Peel and slice, store slices in plastic bag or other suitable container, and freeze. Then when you want to eat, remove from freezer and allow mangos to partially thaw. The mangos should not fully thaw: they should still have ice crystals in them. Put partially thawed mangos in blender, and puree. The result is an ice cream substitute that is 100% raw fruit, delicious, and better than any ice cream. This process can be used with other sweet fruit, such as papayas, pineapple, nectarines, mulberries, blue berries, bananas, etc.

Friday, July 27, 2007

The Center for Food Safety is proud to announce our new book, Your Right to Know: Genetic Engineering and the Secret Changes in Your Food! Are you shopping in the dark? Your Right to Know: Genetic Engineering and the Secret Changes in Your Food provides a comprehensive and up-to-the-minute guide on the very real dangers genetically engineered foods present to our health, the environment, and farm communities. Written by Andrew Kimbrell, Executive Director of the Center for Food Safety, with a foreword by Nell Newman, this book provides you with all the necessary tools to understand this critical food issue, to choose to avoid GE foods and to become an active participant in the fight for an organic, environmentally sustainable and socially just food future.
This is good stuff gang! If you haven't seen The Future of Food (produced by Jerry Garcia's wife). You will get a good idea of what is happening in the farming communities of our country. She did a fantastic job. The bonus features are not to be missed either.
Don't think it affects you? Think again, all of that produce in the grocery store, the wheat and corn in your packaged foods, all of it touches lives.
These things are really coming to the forefront, stay informed. ~j

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Don't ask yourself what the world needs.
Ask yourself what makes you come alive,
and go do that,
because what the world needs is people who have come alive.
~John Eldredge

I have to comment on this a moment. I really enjoy the writing of John Eldredge. He just has a way about him. When I came across this today I felt compelled to share.

The world has many needs and we all live here together. Being conscious of a healthier planet is important, very important, but finding your passion in life is also important. So many people are unhappy in their life situation or even on numb-mode. Just no longer feeling.

But feeling alive. Do you experience that on a daily basis? Weekly, monthly? A friend of mine and I got into the habit of sharing our AHMOTW, whew! Ahh ha moment of the week. That moment the we recognize our aliveness, so to speak. We get to pick one and share, every week, just to enjoy the joy of another and I am thankful for that. Observing someones passion or fire is really amazing.

Your passion? If you haven't found it yet, when you do, your contribution to the world comes along naturally. And that, my friends, is a beautiful thing.

To your passion! ~j

Hi gang! Great little tidbit from the Associated Press today.

If you are trying to cut down on those diet drinks, kudos. As you will see, they are a hindrance to health. The sooner you can completely get them out of your lifestyle, the sooner you will enjoy the fruits of your labor with full benefit.

Give it the good rip, just like a band-aid. ~j

Study: Diet soda linked to heart risks
Mon Jul 23, 6:55 PM ETExcerpts

People who drank more than one diet soda each day developed the same risks for heart disease as those who downed sugary regular soda, a large study found.

The results surprised the researchers who expected to see a difference between regular and diet soda drinkers. It could be, they suggest, that even no-calorie sweet drinks increase the craving for more sweets, and that people who indulge in sodas probably have less healthy diets overall.

The study's senior author, Dr. Vasan Ramachandran, emphasized the findings don't show diet sodas are a cause of increased heart disease risks. But he said they show a surprising link that must be studied.

"It's intriguing and it begs an explanation by people who are qualified to do studies to understand this better," said Vasan, of Boston University School of Medicine.
The research comes from a massive, multi-generational heart study following residents of Framingham , Mass ., a town about 25 miles west of Boston . The new study of 9,000 observations of middle-aged men and women was published Monday online in the journal Circulation.

The researchers found those who drank more than one soda per day — diet or regular — had an increased risk of metabolic syndrome, compared to those who drank less than one soda. Metabolic syndrome is a cluster of symptoms that increase the risk for heart disease including large waistlines and higher levels of blood pressure, blood sugar, cholesterol and blood fats called triglycerides.

Researchers expected the results to differ when regular soda and diet soda drinkers were compared, and were surprised when they did not, Vasan said. But Popkin said that result isn't that surprising. He said much of the market for diet sodas are people who have unhealthy lifestyles and know they need to lose weight — with the other portion being thin people who want to stay that way. That means many people drinking diet sodas have unhealthy habits that could lead to increased heart disease risks, whether they drink diet soda or not.

Monday, July 23, 2007

Outdoor Pleasures
Having A Picnic - great om today...

Dining outdoors is a tradition that spans many cultures and has withstood the test of time. A meal eaten under open sky in the company of loved ones is an occasion in its own right. The very character of picnics, by virtue of their bringing together so much that is pleasing to humanity, makes them a wonderful way to unwind from stress, reconnect with people and nature, and create new memories. There is something magical about picnicking. A blanket, a basket, and a landscape pleasing to the eye intensify the deliciousness of food and help us see the beauty of lazy afternoons spent in nature.

Thoughts of picnics past bring to mind images as varied as we are because the experience of dining outdoors with pleasant companions can unfold in myriad ways. We tend to picnic at the park or on the beach out of necessity, enjoying nourishment in the open air to prolong playtime. But botanical gardens, zoos, museum grounds, nature preserves, and our own backyards can also offer wonderful picnicking venues. Similarly, we associate quintessential summertime foods with picnics, though almost any category of cuisine can be enjoyed picnic style. Refreshing, light foods such as freshly sliced fruit and crisp salads are particularly invigorating on hot summer days. Anticipation of and preparing the food can be just as exciting as the picnic itself. Provisions are only one component of a picnic, however. Games of cards, a Frisbee toss, or other simple, traditional pastimes can provide a secondary focus that expands the scope of your outing beyond foodstuffs. Connecting with nature ! during your picnic can be an easy way to fit in a meditation; whether you lay down under a tree to watch squirrels play or sit by a creek to take in the sounds of trickling water. Remember, too, that if it should happen that your well-planned picnic is disrupted by inclement weather, the pleasures of good company and good food are rendered no less enjoyable when savored on a blanket spread indoors.

Though a solitary picnic can be a treat, picnicking is an activity best shared with the people you care for. Spending time outdoors with others to eat and to play and to be merry will revitalize you, reminding you that life's most sacred pleasures are often the simplest.

So, um...When was the last time you enjoyed a picnic? ~j

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

"There are only two options regarding commitment;
you're either in or you're out.
There's no such thing as life in-between."
~Pat Riley

I loved Pat Riley's coaching style. His book inspired me in those early years of team building and management and now, coming across this quote, I am inspired to ask you in a whole new context...

are you in or out?

Making dietary lifestyle changes is only as hard as you make it. You can take teeny weeny steps or humongous steps or steps in between. The point is that you have decided to be in...decided to take the steps and improve your health and well being as well as being a part of improving the environment by learning about sustainable and Eco-friendly choices.

This game is your life...

are you in or out?

Make the commitment. Get the 411, be well, live well. ~j

Saturday, July 14, 2007

Buy a Bigger Bowl
This is an excerpt from
Really wonderful inspirational insight. I hope that you enjoy it as much as I did today :-)

I dare you~j

We are interesting, us humans. Most of us can only imagine what we already know. Sure we can pretend to muddle about other things, but true imagination is different. Imagination has one foot in reality. In the confines of our human brains, imagination has boundaries.

We live in a box that we call reality, trapped on all sides by boundaries and categories. And for most of us that box defines the limit of our imaginations.We leverage our life experiences as a means to stretch our imagination.

Like a theme from the Truman Show, day after day we travel down the same road, until one day we dare to imagine a different route to a different destination.

We are given the opportunity to dream on a regular basis. And when we focus on the dream, when we set out a plan, suddenly the dream is in the realm of reality. It is within our box. Our bodies are controlled by our minds. Nobody ever won without first daring to dream that they could. So we push ourselves not as much to the limits of our body, but to the limits of our imagination. Assume you can never do it, and you never will.

In a funny way we are like goldfish – we will always expand to the size of our bowl. No matter how big the challenge set before us, we will find a way to succeed.

Think you can’t do it?
I think you are wrong.
Buy a bigger bowl.
Dare to dream. Dare to peek outside the confines of your imagination. Stretch out your arm and put your hand through the fire. Grab hold of the other side and pull yourself through.

I promise, you won’t get burned.

Blueberries, YEAH!

Blueberries are in the peak of their season.

Celebrate the mildly sweet, sometimes tart and tangy, flavor of blueberries while they are fresh, delicious and available.
Second only to strawberries in popularity, blueberries have consistently been ranked among the top fruits and vegetables tested for antioxidant activity.
Bursting with flavor and low in calories, blueberries make a quick, easy and nutritious addition to your Healthiest Way of Eating. There are so many ways to enjoy them...add them to your whole grain muffins or cereal, top your yogurt, swirl them into your smoothie or just enjoy them all on their own.

Nutritional Value
The anthocyanin phytonutrients found in blueberries, along with their vitamin C, deliver powerful antioxidant protection from the oxidative damage caused by free radicals.
One cup of blueberries provides 31% of the daily value (DV) for vitamin C, 20% DV for manganese, and 16% DV for dietary fiber.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

It takes a deep commitment to change and an even deeper commitment to grow.
~Ralph Ellison (1914-1994)
This begs for a few minutes of reflection.
Addressing life in all areas.
Take a moment to breathe.
Commitment, Character, Truth, Integrity...all amazing attributes that are displayed every day in our ordinary lives. All attributes that we can strive to find a little more of in our lives as well.
While taking time to reflect today, really think about what it means to your life to change and grow. I have seen amazing things happen in my own life and those in my circle. Things that were even approached with a little skepticism on the side but were willing to do the work. Maybe feel that change isn't ahead of you these the very least offering a smile or kind word to someone new can be very rewarding to those on the receiving end :-)
Changes great or small, whether it is related to food, exercise, works, spouse, kids or friendships...give yourself the opportunity make the commitment.
It feels great to be alive! ~j

Sunday, July 08, 2007

ANSWER THE CALL...Make the commitment
What a cool concert for a cool cause. If you didn't catch it, get caught up and enjoy. A worldwide call for awareness. My kind of fun! Just outstanding. Al Gore was asked if he was planning on running for the presidency and his comment was something to this effect...the president holds immense power, but there is great power held by these grassroots organizations...HOW COOL IS THAT?? He is right. I imagine that his life has be touched and changed immeasurably working toward this cause and that is true for those that find passion for something that they believe in. There is a great voice that each one of us has a part in. Speak up and take action for the call that you hear. For those about to rock...! ~j

Sign The Pledge:
Wow. Live Earth. Wow. But more on that later. First, down to business. Take Al Gore's 7 point Live Earth pledge, printed below.

  1. To demand that my country join an international treaty within the next 2 years that cuts global warming pollution by 90% in developed countries and by more than half worldwide in time for the next generation to inherit a healthy earth (remember my post waaaay back when on Kyoto...well there are individual cities that have jumped on board, but...still work to be done);
  2. To take personal action to help solve the climate crisis by reducing my own CO2 pollution as much as I can and offsetting the rest to become "carbon neutral;" (check out your carbon on my website. learn how to reduce your polluter status :-0).
  3. To fight for a moratorium on the construction of any new generating facility that burns coal without the capacity to safely trap and store the CO2;
  4. To work for a dramatic increase in the energy efficiency of my home, workplace, school, place of worship, and means of transportation (awareness goes a long way in initiating change, just talk about it) ;
  5. To fight for laws and policies that expand the use of renewable energy sources and reduce dependence on oil and coal;
  6. To plant new trees and to join with others in preserving and protecting forests (many cities already have great programs to help you with this) ; and,
  7. To buy from businesses and support leaders who share my commitment to solving the climate crisis and building a sustainable, just, and prosperous world for the 21st century (Oh yes, this is a big deal. Your voice can be heard through $$, loud and clear. Why do you think organic has gone industrial. Yes, big deal here) .

Click here to sign the pledge!7/7/07: If you haven't seen Live Earth, the concerts are still online at MSN Live Earth.
Plan to spend some time there, because the concerts are packed with incredibly cool stuff. Some of our favorite moments from YouTube are below...

Thursday, July 05, 2007

"We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness."

~The Declaration of Independence
Let freedom ring! Celebrate~j

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Whatever you do,
just always remember that for things to change,
you must get a picture of what you want them to change to.
~Jerry Clark

Most people are looking for change in their lives. Striving for that next big promotion, dreaming about a new house, hoping for something to come along and shake things up. No matter what it is for you...having a distinct picture in your minds eye will really provide motivation and purpose to get there.

Sometimes it is not all material. I recall a time (maybe even two...) when I thought that I had everything, but knew there was something significant missing. I was unfulfilled in an area of my life that I could not define. When I realized that it hinged on a spiritual need, I was suprised. But The Police said it well when the said that '...we are spirits, in a material world...' I was a good church girl all my life but I followed my religion with human expectation. I knew all the words to the songs, when to sit and stand, when to bow and kneel in prayer. But still something was tugging at my heart. I realized it was up and feel it! Don't just repeat it. My grandfather used to admonish me for not using the weekly prayer booklet and at the time I just didn't get it. Of course, I knew it all :-). What I believe he was trying to say is more important to be in the moment than to just slip through it.

I find this change for me liberating. It opened up a whole new world of understanding, peace and joy. Reaching for those changes will take many shapes and forms and often the changes that we thought we really wanted become secondary to those that lay closer to our hearts than expected. There are always areas of growth in our lives. Sometimes they come around more than once.

A different season of life a different place to grow. These are a little more challenging because it is hard to picture in our minds eye. Look deeply, if you look to your heart, it will guide you whether in spirit or even for the touchy stuff.

Here's to your picture! ~j

Sunday, July 01, 2007

Nothing is sacred but the integrity of your own mind. ~Ralph Waldo Emerson

Please be aware of the risk.

Aspertame is in so many foods, including some baby foods. It is completely unreasonable. These diet type of foods are quite harmful to the body. Especially in the amounts that Americans eat them.

I challenge you to read the labels on your foods and beverages. Yes, look at the active ingredients and the ingredients and see what lurks below the container or wrapper.

Not only are there links to cancer, but the neurological disruptions are extreme. ALS, Parkinsons, Epilepsy etc. Are you sure you want your children to have that diet drink? Your mom, your co-worker? Are you willing to put something in your body that can trigger these responses? Well, as ususal, there are two sides to the story. To satisfy your curiosity...check it out. A simple google will do the trick!

A very informative documentary style short film has been released regarding personal experience and effects of Aspartame in our real world. If you can find someone with a copy of Sweet Misery, watch it and share it.

With naturally sweetened smile! ~j

Friday, June 29, 2007

Great Om today! You are alive right now! Don't miss it ~j

Capturing The Thrill
Do What Excites You

Each human life has the potential to be dramatic, thrilling, and awe-inspiring. Our lives are, in truth, ours to design. Each day, we make choices that influence the character of our experiences, and our decisions determine whether our paths are rousing or tedious, breathtaking or tiresome.

We can create an exciting life by simply doing what excites us whenever the opportunity presents itself. Your passions may ebb and flow, and what excites you one year may not excite you the next, but when you make excitement a regular part of your existence, life becomes more fun and more fulfilling.

If you are somebody that tends to live practically, excitement may overwhelm you at first. To ease the anxiety that prevents you from incorporating all that you find exciting into your life, acknowledge that you are alive right now in this time and every moment matters. When you choose to do more of what excites you, even if your choices requires you to make certain sacrifices, your daily life will soon be imbued with exhilaration, pleasure, and optimistic anticipation.

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Hi gang! Great little nugget on CSA from the I just can't mention it foods for a living body! Enjoy ~j

Want just-picked produce without having to do the picking?

The BiteEasy.
Join a CSA (community-supported agriculture) program, where you buy a share in a local farm and receive a variety of produce once a week. You'll get in-season produce without having to pull a single weed.

The Benefits

  • Delicious fresh produce. If you're too busy to put down the laptop and pick up the hoe, CSAs are the perfect shortcut, and some offer home delivery.
  • Less pollution. Only 10% of the fossil fuel energy used to generate food goes into growing it; 90% goes to ads, packaging, and transport.
  • Support for local farmers. Small farms are an endangered species due to competition from big factory farms.

Joining the organic revolution. Many CSAs source food from organic farms.

Personally Speaking - The biggest kick we get out of belonging to a CSA is not knowing what food we're going to get next and trying out the suggested recipes that come with our deliveries - all for about $15 per week.

Wanna Try?
Local Harvest - locate a CSA near you.
Evert-Fresh Green Bags - keep

Sunday, June 24, 2007

Here is some great information on the American way when it comes to food from Mike Adams. No wonder we are considered fat, dumb and lazy...a sorry state that my goal is to change :-)

Are you noticing all the weight loss hype over the Alli drug these days? For a drug that causes hardly any weight loss at all, the media sure is making lots of noise. Not as much noise as the people taking the drug, however, who are screaming out loud after they embarrassingly discover the drug causes them to soil their undies.

Today's feature story gives you the straight story on not just the Alli drug, but also what the commercial success of this drug says about American society today. With the release of this product, America now ranks #1 in the world for the most adults who poop their pants (per capita).

";Miracle" weight loss drug Alli delivers more than you bargained for (diapers optional)When people ask, "What can I do to lose weight?" what they're really asking is, "What can I do to lose weight that doesn't require exercise or giving up all the junk foods I eat?" When it comes to weight loss, consumers are looking for a magic bullet...

The bottom line is...stop eating all of the crap that you are being programmed to buy! It is a major factor for declining health. As I sat in the local grocery store reading the handbook that accompanies this drug I was intrigued. It was well packaged, had great fonts and white space layout, was a smaller hand held sized, easy to read, good recipes, but touted a low fat diet. Darn! Because this drug stops the assimilation of at least 1/4 of your fat intake. Now...we know that we NEED healthy fats otherwise we will burn up inside. Right? If you look closely, the diet is all about lifestyle changes and the drug has minimal positive effects.

Well, just a note on this because, again, we are looking for a miracle cure that we already have the recipe for folks.

Drugless in CA ~j

Monday, June 11, 2007

No one has an exclusive on opportunity.
When the sun rises, it rises for everyone.
~Chinese proverb
Hi gang!
With so much end of the school year activity going on it is in deep reflection that I re-read the above quote.
This is true of the wonder flushed kindergarten graduate, the promotion from elementary school into junior high, those that are making their way into the life changing journey of high school or responsibilities of choosing a career path through college.
But it is just as valid for those who awaken each day in the reality of the life you are living. Are you in anticipation of what the day will bring, what opportunity lay ahead? Or do you waken with a small ill in the pit of your stomach, maybe you are numb with the burden that has become your life.
And yet, I hear the echo of an above one has an exclusive opportunity...

Sunday, June 10, 2007

If you don't stay informed,
then who will tell the others the truth?
~ Unknown

Thursday, June 07, 2007

Kites rise highest against the wind,
not with it.
~Winston Churchill
Life holds amazing experiences for us. If you are not experiencing the wind you are definately missing out! Sometimes I find that I am at my best when I have to figure out how to deal with the worst situations.
Flying high today! ~j