I am excited to share my love of plant-based raw foods and the joys of vegetarian cooking. I use whole foods that come as close as possible to their natural state without unnecessary processing. This includes fresh fruits, vegetables, sprouted nuts and seeds, natural sweeteners, fresh sprouts, fermented foods, high quality cold pressed oils and unrefined fats (mostly in the form of coconut oil and avocados). I also use some organic, free-range eggs and raw goat cheese. This is a lifestyle choice that makes me look and feel my best! I believe in eating delicious, wholesome foods that nourish the body.
I am a landscaper by trade with a passion for healthy foods, smoothies, juicing, organic gardening, and simple living. I have a wonderful, supportive husband, 3 dogs and 1 cat. What a household! In a few weeks, I will be turning 42 years old, but I feel so much younger and happier than I did when I was in my 20′s. I wasn’t always like this.
I had always lead a life of the SAD (Standard American Diet) way of eating and so I had acne, weight issues, allergies, digestive problems, stiff joints, mild depression . . . the list goes on. About three years ago, my digestive problems had gotten to the point that it was affecting my work and performance. I said “ENOUGH! There has to be a better way and I believe changing what goes into my mouth is a start.” Around the same time, I received a Vitamix high speed blender for my birthday. Things were lining up for me to change my ways – little did I know that what I would be getting into would change my life for the better.
I researched. I read. I played with recipes. I changed my diet to a plant based way of eating. I felt fabulous! The high quality, organic, fresh whole foods were healing my body. I still eat this way and have never felt better. I have recently been incorporating some raw goat cheese, local, organic eggs and once in a while some organic, hormone/antibiotic free chicken. I have learned thru this journey to listen to my body and what it wants – not what I think it should have. I have realized that you are what you eat and food can either help or hinder you. I have developed a symbiotic relationship with my body. Give it good, nourishing, whole foods and it rewards me with no digestive problems, no allergies, no more headaches or body aches, no colds or flu. It is a win-win situation. My vision has improved, lost weight naturally (I’m at my ideal body weight without trying), have clear skin and tons of energy. When I work outside heavily (work or fun), I recover so much faster – sometimes I don’t feel the effect of the work I did. There is no diet that will do what eating healthy does. I love the way I feel when I eat healthy!
I have also noticed that with healthy foods, my depression (which I didn’t really know was there) has lifted. I have a passion and joy for living, sharing and experiencing life. I make a conscious choice daily to do good things for myself and to interact with people who are positive and uplifting. What started out with food to heal my body has gone onto another level to heal my mind and spirit. I am more present and open with my family and friends than ever before. I was like a child, who was sitting in the corner watching – now I am the child out there playing, living, experiencing, laughing and loving.
The fog has lifted. The REAL me has come out and I am learning more about myself every day. It didn’t happen over night – I work on it always. That’s what it is all about. Evolving, growing – being the best possible you. Open yourself to possibilities and enjoy the ride. We all have a choice on how to react to situations and people – change your thoughts and change your world. I do this all the time and it amazes me that all the little things that used to bother me don’t any more.
My wonderful husband, Scott has been such a champ and very supportive. When I first mentioned that I was changing how I ate to help heal my body, he was all on board. As long as the food tasted great, no problem. And boy, does it! Eating this way is more flavorful and fulfilling than the way I used to eat. A variety of whole foods excites my senses and taste buds. I am in culinary delight! Scott has benefited too. Lost weight, better complexion, arthritis doesn’t bother him hardly at all anymore, lowered cholesterol and tons of energy.
Scott and I love to grow as much as possible in our organic garden. Each year, it GROWS! We grow several varieties of kale, spinach, swiss chard, cucumber, beets, onions, peppers, tomatoes, herbs, whatever I can get seeds for. The work is SO worth it when we get to harvest all the goodies for consuming. Nothing tastes better than produce fresh from the garden.
I love playing in the kitchen discovering and trying out new recipes. I look forward to share with you my creations and variations from friend’s recipes. It’s all about sharing and inspiring each other.
I ADORE my Vitamix blender! It has changed how I do things in the kitchen. Every morning, I make a HUGE green smoothie for me, Scott and our three dogs (Blackie, Meg and Gigi). They love their smoothies and come running when the Vitamix turns on and patiently sit, waiting for their small bowls of green goodness. I can throw a bunch of different veggies and spices into it, turn it on, and within a few minutes have healthy, nourishing, and TASTY warm/hot soup that is amazing. I can make dips, sauces, dressings, “out-of-this-world” smoothies (green and superfood), ice cream, the list goes on. I even juice in mine. Put in veggies with a bit of water to facilitate blending – 20 seconds. Put thru an inexpensive 1 gallon paint strainer’s bag (hardware store) and squeeze. Voila! Live juice! Drink within 20 minutes. Delicious! I use the leftover pulp for crackers or put it into the dog’s food – they love it!
I hate for anything to go to waste around here. After juicing lemons, I’ll use peels/rinds to make my own natural disinfectant – soak in white vinegar in a mason jar for 2 weeks. Strain. Put into a spray bottle (1/2 lemon vinegar/ 1/2 water – can add essential oils) and you are ready to tackle grime, grit, bacteria, etc. for just pennies. The left over rinds go into compost bin. Even the resident ground hog and rabbits enjoy eating out of the compost. Hey, little is wasted here!
I am continuing to learn along the way. I try to absorb as much information as I can through books, blogs, websites, videos, and other forms of media. However, as we all know, you can’t believe everything you hear or read, so it is important to do a bit of self research, and root digging to find out what you truly believe and what works best for you. We are all different, individual beings. So being in tune with our bodies and listening to what it wants/needs – can be a beneficial thing.
Some simple truths I like to live by:
Try New Things
Make work into Play
Make your Own Inspiration
Love What You Do
Stop Holding Yourself Back
Love Often and Be Happy
Choose only the Best for You and Your Family
My journey started when I was looking to heal my body with whole foods. In three years time, much has happened with me. I have grown emotionally, cleansed emotionally, brought up patterns and thoughts and changed them for the better. Believe me, I have accumulated a lot in almost 42 years. However, I feel you are NEVER too old to change. You only have to CHOOSE it and then do it. It will take some practice and consistency, but it will become a part of you if you are willing to be better. Thoughts, attitudes and perceptions can be just as toxic as food can be, so incorporating healthier foods into your life is only part of the equation. Incorporating healthier thoughts, attitudes and perceptions can make a huge difference toward a much happier, less stressful life. My journey is still ongoing and I can’t wait to see where it will take me. I LOVE my life!