Summer lessons

I’m sad that July is almost over but this is honestly the best time because summer’s in full bloom! I feel creative this time of year; It’s when I have time to read, try different exercises, listen to new music, try new food and enjoy life fully. It’s easy to get stuck in the habit of watching TV all day, staying up too late at night, eating whatever junk food is in the kitchen, etc. All of these habits make me feel groggy and tired. Getting in the habit of taking care of my body, reading inspirational books and watching inspiring movies, brings me deep satisfaction. I feel like I have purpose in life; I’m motivated to volunteer, learn more about the causes I care about, try something new…. When I do these things, I feel alive.

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Diet and Life

I never thought that I would come across a diet that encourages people to eat mainly carbohydrates! I’ve been reading The Starch Solution by Dr. McDougall; it’s about the science behind why starches are good for the body and why meat and dairy should be eliminated from our diet. I honestly feel so good when I follow this diet. The fact that we are depleting the world’s resources by eating animals scares me. The judgement I know I will get from people when I tell them I eat this way kinda scares me, too. But this book is just what I needed, because it’s designed to prepare vegans to answer questions about why they eat and avoid eating what they do.

My eating habits have become a lot simpler lately, which really has helped me not to focus so much on foodfoodfood, which is nice for a change. Throughout life I think we go through stages of focus. School, work, cooking, eating, sleeping, reading, watching movies or whatever hobbies we do. We pick one thing and spend most of our time on it. It’s hard to keep a balanced life where we are centered on multiple things equally. We always end up neglecting something. I always end up neglecting cleaning my room, focusing on my soul, and stretching out my body. Without a clean environment, it’s hard to focus on my spiritual life, which stretching and yoga helps me do. Hmm.

Learning from Raw Transformation 

I’ve recently been reading the book Raw Transformation by Wendy Rudell to gain more knowledge about raw food, food combination, and cleansing the body. It inspired me to learn more about breathing, which might seem weird, but we take breathing for granted sometimes and don’t realize when we’re actually holding our breath! 

Sprouting is another topic that the author draws upon that I never thought of trying before. First you soak the seeds (sunflower, sesame, Brazil nuts, almonds, etc.), then place them in a sprouting jar or tray for a certain amount of time. You can also omit sprouting and just soak the seeds. Soaking seeds allows the enzymes to activate, increases the nutrient content, and allows for easier digestion. 

I’m going to try soaking and sprouting, and update how it goes 😁

High carb, low fat, vegan grocery haul

I’ve recently discovered a YouTube channel called Ninaandranda, run by two girls who were raised vegan! I was really intrigued by their lifestyle, especially their eating habits. They make it look simple to eat this way, and they said that eating more fiber and less fat cleared their acne, so I’ve decided to tryout this way of living for a while! Here are some foods that I will eat in order to successfully follow a HCLF vegan diet:
Organic sweet potatoes (baked at 400 degrees Fahrenheit for 70 minutes)

Bananas
Organic apples

Mangoes

Watermelon

Canteloupe 

(Any fruit, basically)

Ezekiel bread

All-fruit strawberry jam

Brown/wild rice

Quinoa

Organic mixed vegetables (frozen)

Frozen mangoes, pineapple,blueberries, cherries, bananas, etc.

Seasoning: salt occasionally and onion flakes 

I’m still learning new recipes from the book that the girls recommend, The Starch Solution by: Dr. Mcdougall, but here are a few of the recipes I eat in a day:

Breakfast, any amount of slices of Ezekiel bread topped with fruit spread, any amount of fruit on the side

Lunch: A bowl or more of rice topped with mixed vegetables, sweet potatoes or frozen mango

Snacks: Fruit or veggies. I like blending together frozen fruit and a bit of almond milk to make a sorbet

Dinner would be similar to lunch.

I love this way of eating because it doesn’t limit the amount of food you eat, as long as it is high in fiber and/or starch. I recommend reading a sample of The Starch Solution and eventually buying it! 

Summer Recipes!

imageLunch sandwich!

Toasted Ezekiel English muffin

Organic yellow mustard

Cheddar goat cheese

1/4 avocado

Organic romaine lettuce

Organic tomato slices

imageMango-banana protein sorbet. Great for breakfast or dessert!

Blend together:

~1/2 cup frozen mango

~1/2 cup frozen banana slices

2 tbsp whey protein powder

2 tbsp cacao nibs

1 tbsp almond butter

A couple splashes of unsweetened almond milk

I also add in goji berries and flax seed meal 🙂

imageChocolate berry nice-cream!

Blend together:

~1/2 cup frozen banana slices

~ 1/2 cup frozen cherries, raspberries or strawberries

2 tbsp cacao nibs

A couple splashes of unsweetened almond milk

A scoop of chocolate protein powder ( I like Nature’s Bounty, Vega One, and Quest protein powder) or a few tsp of cocoa powder.

Topped with cacao nibs and goji berries 🙂

imageSummer Caesar salad! Featuring a cup of Tiny Tea.

Mix together

As much Romaine lettuce as you want!

Organic cherry tomatoes

Organic sliced cucumbers

Organic chopped yellow bell pepper

1/4 Avocado

Caesar dressing:

1 tbsp lemon juice

1 minced garlic clove

1/2 cup organic mayonnaise

1/4 cup grated goat cheddar cheese

1 tbsp white wine vinegar

1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce

1 tbsp Dijon mustard

1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil

The dressing makes 6 servings!

*note: feel free to be generous with the amount of vegetables and fruits for each recipe!

More summer inspired recipes to come!

Deceiving Garden

A garden. Pocketed with strawberries. Overshadowed by monstrous magnolias. A mindless walk can lead one to the sudden drop, the ragged edge of a cliff. Rock is sedimented in layer after layer, into the rushing ocean water, wave after wave smacks the rock, just as Samuel had smacked the surface of the ocean. His twinkling aquamarine eyes could bring me into a different state of mind. That garden, with its promising relaxation, never ending breeze, could make me cry. My tears never made it down my cheeks- always blown away. Perpetual motion. Grass always leaning to one side or the other. I felt like being lifted off of the ground and falling slowly off the edge. This place could no longer be what it used to be. What did it used to be? My tears won’t let me find out. Remembering isn’t enough.

(side note: I wrote this two years ago in December. I found it while flipping through my old journal. It surprised me because I didn’t remember writing it.)

Worrying About Nothing

It seems silly to worry about wasting a day and living life to the fullest, but I do this every day. Am I volunteering enough? Loving enough? Forgiving enough? Praying enough? Doing enough? Enough worrying! Nothing good comes from it. Nothing. I want to relax and enjoy the moment, take a deep breath, and smile. Letting my guard down scares me. I’m afraid I’m going to look back at my life and see nothing. No risks taken, no good friendships, no adventures. No creativity no positivity no meaningful memories. No contribution, most of all. No accomplishments. I don’t know how to get out of this state of mind but I’m going to take it one day at a time. I just want to relax and enjoy the ride.