Minding Your Mind and Keeping Your Memories

With each pen stroke I made to the paper, my memories emptied themselves into beautiful flowery words. Each memory telling a story off my life. I was running out of ink and paper, I resorted to the crayons I found under the chair and wrote on the walls. Memories of childhood, of going to the little grocery store for my mom and the clerk always gave me a Twinkie because she thought I was such a good girl to do this nice thing for my mom. I wrote I wrote about the time a bee flew into our car and my sister freaking out…this first time I thought about being afraid of bees and bugs was a normal thing. For some reason I couldn’t hold onto my memories.

My kitchen walls were filled with all the recipes I’ve collected in my mind and memory. Recipes I made from memory. Muffins, donuts, pancakes, veggie soup, avocado bliss, chicken and rice, pesto encrusted salmon all my go to recipes were written on the walls with the crayons I found.

As the crayons and rooms were spent and filled, I found other things to write with and more areas to write on. I used some sharpees and wrote on the garage floor about all the places I’ve ever traveled to from memory. Writing each one out in detail and seeing where I’ve been seemed to be the most freeing exercise in futility I’ve ever done. I stood back and walked from room to room looking at all I had written…reliving each moment in memory.

As I wrote reach memory out, my mind emptied itself of all the clutter I collected over the 55 years of my life. But I could no longer remember these memories as they were put down on paper (walls, post-it’s, napkins, tables, floors, shower curtains, etc). My mind was empty. It was like a data dump from a computer to a flash drive. I had no memory left, my mind had to be reformatted to accept and build new memories. I thought to myself “Who’s minding my mind?

That’s when it happened.

My alarm went off.

I sat up to write out this strange dream/nightmare. I wrote in detail which is why I’m sharing this here. I kept thinking that it was only a dream, but it was also a wake up call. Then, as usual, for me at least, I asked myself questions about the dream and about how it related to my life as it is now.

“Do Alzheimer’s patients feel like this when they are losing their memories? Where do their memories go? Do patients know they are losing their memories?” I don’t know the answers to these questions…but it would prove an interesting study. No…I don’t have memory issues, but in my dream I felt compelled to write everything out. If you looked at my computer monitor, I have sticky notes all around it. My office door is arrayed with sticky notes as is my refrigerator, my pantry, and my front door. All a sign of a busy life.

“What’s the moral of this story?”

  • Keep remembering the moments in your life but try not to get stuck on in the past.
  • Write them out if you need to and read them. Share these memories with your children and grandchildren.
  • Connect or reconnect with family and friends.
  • Protect your memory.

Minding your mind also includes making better food choices and eliminating those foods that don’t provide nutritional benefits but robs your body of necessary nutrients to support a vibrant quality of life.

We’ve been told that fat is a culprit and we should eliminate it from our diets but our gray matter which holds our memories is made up of fat and without the right amount of fat we lose that elasticity and our memories will begin to slip at an earlier age.

While dairy is a big allergy culprit that is being eliminated from diets across the board. It’s part of the Big 4 (dairy, eggs, sugar, grain) we are suggested to remove from our diets that might improve our life. Well, dairy is one of those food groups that is somewhat difficult to remove if you don’t have a food allergy to it. But there are all sorts of dairy alternatives to choose from. Alternative cheeses are great if you want to ingest all sorts of chemicals which are a detriment to our health.

Being Italian and having to eliminate cheese is like a fish giving up water. I have tried to find good alternatives to ricotta cheese that didn’t have cashews, potatoes, or starches…and something that’s a good raw alternative! They don’t exist.

So I went into my memory and came up with my own Macadamia “Ricotta” Cheese.

Slightly wet ricotta cheese

Macadamia “Ricotta” Cheese

  • 1 cup organic raw macadamia nuts, water soaked overnight in a covered container
  • 1/4 cup full fat coconut milk, no additives or emulsifiers
  • 1 clove garlic, minced and let to sit for 10 minutes to activate the alicin.
  • 1/4 teaspoon Himalayan salt
  • 1 teaspoon basil, oregano, Italian seasoning (optional)

In a nutribullet or high powered blender, purée all the ingredients. Adding a teaspoon of water or more if necessary to make the mixture resemble ricotta cheese. Pour into a container and use as a dip or use as a component of a raw zucchini lasagne.

Makes 1 cup ricotta cheese.

Minding our mind and holding onto our memories is up to each of us. We make choices every day that will either keep our memories intact or make them disappear into nothingness.

Choose wisely and protect those memories!

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Recipe Dreaming

I have only met a couple of people so far in my 54 years here on earth who are like me and dream in recipes. Sometimes it’s a curse and sometimes it’s a blessing. I always find it fascinating to have the different flavors running around in my dreams colliding and becoming the “best thing you’ve made” dinners, cakes, muffins, and ice cream.

With every dream, I am awakened from a deep sleep only to find myself writing down the ingredients and formulating the steps as I saw in the dream. And so it goes with this one particular raw vegan meal. It has many stages something I am definitely not accustomed to. These flavors come alive together and compliment each other well.

I just wish I could share them all with you, oh wait I can. The 50-Day Cleanse has a Facebook group. We’ll be sharing our experiences and triumphs here. We’ll also be open to comments and questions. If you want to learn about this cleanse or have started the journey with me please join, we gain so much more when we’re helping each other.

The meal in my dreams

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Vibrant Veggie Tostada with a Radish Cucumber Salsa

Tostada

  • 1  16-ounce package Trader Joe’s organic cauliflower rice (or you can use a cauliflower and rice on a cheese grated to resemble rice)
  • 3 Tablespoons nutritional yeast
  • 6 ounces sundried tomatoes (soaked in good water overnight)
  • 2 cloves garlic, sliced
  • 1 small shallot, sliced
  • 2 Flax Eggs (2 Tablespoons ground golden flax seeds mixed with 4 T good water, let sit 15 minutes)

Whirl it together in a food processor.

Using an ice cream scoop, scoop out a portion and flatten in your hands. Place it on the rack of a food dehydrator and dehydrate at 115 degrees (the maximum for being considered raw) for 5 to six hours depending on how thick each “tostada” is.

Remove and assemble for tostada’s or let them sit out on the counter overnight for a pliable tortilla shell.

Makes 12.

Lettuce Filling

  • 4 large lettuce leaves
  • 1 carrot shredded
  • 1 green onion, thin sliced
  • 1 red, orange, or yellow pepper, fine diced
  • 1/4 cup chopped cilantro for topping

Mix together in a bowl. Set aside until ready to use

Avocado Spread

  • 1 ripe avocado, peeled and pitted
  • 1 clove garlic, sliced
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • 1/4 teaspoon Himalayan salt
  • 1/8 – 1/2 teaspoon Habanero pepper flakes

Whirl together in a Nutri bullet or ninja. Set aside.

Radish Cucumber Salsa

  • 1 English Cucumber, thinly sliced and quartered
  • 1 bunch radishes, shredded
  • 1 cup sugar snap peas, ends removed sliced
  • 1/8 cup fresh mint leaves, chopped
  • 1/4 teaspoon Himalayan salt
  • Juice of half a lemon

Mix all together in a bowl and refrigerate until ready to eat.

Mango Mint Topping

  • 1 mango, chunked
  • 1 clove garlic, sliced
  • 1/4 cup good water
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 1/3 cup cold pressed Spanish green olive oil

Whirl it together in a Nutri bullet or blender.

Plating

  1. Place Cauliflower Tostada on a plate.
  2. Spread Tostada with Avocado Spread
  3. Top with Lettuce Filling
  4. Top with another layer of Cauliflower Tostada
  5. More Lettuce Filling
  6. Drizzle Mango Mint Topping
  7. Garnish with Cilantro
  8. Scoop a side of Radish Cucumber Salsa
  9. ENJOY!

Makes 3 servings (2 Tostada stacks each).

 

 

 

 

MAKE A DIFFERENCE

Together we can climb mountains, swim oceans, and build bridges. Together we can make a difference just by the way we live and the example we set for other people to see. Living by principles and convictions we make the world a better place.

Yesterday I began a new leg in my journey because I was willing to see the possibilities in life. I know I made the right choice because I’m standing in the gap, the way my father taught me so many years ago. This part of my journey is filled with exciting ways of helping people grow beyond what they thought was possible. This part helps people to realize their own dreams.

Help

All of us have the need to reach out to others to help, but many people shrink back and never reach out. We can’t make a difference if we’re shrinking back from life. We can’t move forward if we never change our circumstances. We can’t turn over a new leaf if we’re constantly complaining and blaming other people.

Make a difference in your life. Take responsibility for it.

Make a difference in someone else’s life. Step into the realm of possibilities.

One of the best ways to cultivate a possibility mind-set is to prompt yourself to dream on size bigger than you normally do.  ~John C. Maxwell

Collectively we all make a difference!

NEGATIVE NOBODYS

Negative Mind

Every time I see one of my dreams coming true, I see myself moving farther and farther away from that negative, drama-filled person I was many years ago. It takes much stamina to fulfill your dreams. People will always be clamoring around you at how dumb your ideas may be, or how inadequate you are to have that dream. Well, I’m here to say “Stop listening them and move in the directions of your dreams!” Just like the photo above, you can’t have a negative mind and live a positive life. Negative Nobodys  will come and go but you have choice to listen to them and continue with your status quo life, or you can push their words out of your head and listen to your inner voice telling you, “I CAN DO THIS!” Dreams are made of this!

Sometimes when we stop listening to their negative words that keep playing in our personal MP3 files in our brain, our whole life is changed because we aren’t tied to them anymore. I’m not saying this is easy; it’s far from it. It’s one of the most difficult things to do especially when it’s your family saying these negative words. If you don’t speak up then you have to put up. If someone in your life is causing you to have a negative outlook in your life, and you don’t do anything to make it stop then you are giving that person permission to dump on you whenever the feeling hits them. Negative Nobody’s  don’t see themselves as negative because no one has ever had the strength to go against the grain and tell them that their negativity is causing a problem. It takes a lot of continuous strength to stand up to the Negative Nobody’s in our lives, but I guarantee when you do, you are one step closer to making your dream come true.

Dreams can’t live in a negative atmosphere. So many people have had their dreams torn down, or taken away from them that when they try to be positive about a dream only the negative parts of life flow to them. Once you get over the negative stop revisiting it. It doesn’t do anyone a bit of good to rehash something over and over again. Let it go, find something positive to focus on. Get a big calendar and every day for one week find something positive about each day. Write it down on the calendar day. “Today is August 23, 2013, I worked out for an hour, I only ate 4 cookies today, I met three new people today.”

After the week is up, go back and look at all the ways your life is positive. Then for the next week, on that same calendar write down something positive about yourself (this is extremely helpful if you have a negative view of yourself.) “August 23, 2013, today when I looked in the mirror I said “I love you, gorgeous! Look at your beautiful long red hair” Trust me your life will change and day-by-day you will transform your negative world into a spring of positivity. People will tell you “Wow, you’ve changed! What’s different about you?” You can respond with “I let go of the trash in my life!” Granted you may get the feeling like you don’t fit into your old group of friends or your family but that’s okay because then you have the chance to lead them to better place or maybe it’s time to spread your wings and fly.

Don’t let the Negative Nobodys steal your dreams or crush your spirit!

VISUALIZING OUR DREAMS

There are some important steps to visualizing what we need to see to help us grow forward and be prosperous in the world. But we’re not taught these skills in school; they are lessons learned throughout our life. In fact we’re taught just the opposite. “Get your head out of the clouds!” “Stop daydreaming!” “You can’t believe a hunch!” But sometimes we’re told that certain aspects of the visualizing tools are useful like “a mother’s intuition” or “that gut feeling.” Wouldn’t it be wonderful if we could use these valid tools to transform our all the facets of our lives? How would our health be different if we used these tools? Well we can and many people already do. We too can learn to use these tools that will help in visualizing our dream!

Visualizing Our Dream

Visualizing our dreams makes me think of Adam Sandler’s character in Bedtime Stories.  His niece and nephew would implant suggestions before going to sleep and their dreams would come true. This is what we do when we visualize. But in order to visualize our dreams we need to change the paradigms or examples that we carry with us.

Here are six areas that need to change in order for our paradigms to change:

  • Perception: How you perceive the world around you makes a big impact on how you perceive and visualize your dream. If your perception is based on the premise that everyone is out to get you, then you will not be able to visualize your dream because you will constantly be thinking that someone might take your dream away from you, or someone might be better at what you want to accomplish than you. There will always be someone who’s better than you. Your competition should be with yourself, trying to be a better you instead of competing with others is a healthier perception than always trying to compete with other people. 
  • Will: Do you have the will to move forward and achieve that with which you visualize? If your will or desire does not match your dream visually, then you will not only have a difficult time when you visualize but you will also have a difficult time following through to the end result. You’re either ready of you’re not. You either have a deep desire or will to change or you don’t. You can’t visualize your dream while sitting on the fence. You can’t try to be healthy one day and then destructive the next and expect to healthy the rest of your life.
  • Imagination: Do you have the creative ability to carry a mental image of your dream with you at all times? If you can use your imagination to create solutions to problems not yet seen then you can use it to visualize how your dreams can become a reality. Get your head back into those clouds and find your imagination again. Use it to bring your dream to life, give it a form, a shape. Only you can bring it to life, you can’t rely on your spouse, your parents, or your friends. It’s your dream, not theirs.
  • Memory:  Can you remember details about your dream so you can trudge through the difficult areas of life and still maintain your dream? What do I mean by this? Making your dream a reality is not all roses and glory. It’s going to require that you do things you don’t like to do, and things that are just plain menial. But they need to get done so your dream can become a reality. Our memory of what we hold in our minds eye helps use move forward by motivating us to make changes in our paradigm so they’re congruent with the visualization of our dreams.     
  • Intuition: Our intuition balances us. It’s what we think about even when we think we’re doing something where we’re focusing solely on what we’re doing. Have you ever been doing something that needed your undivided attention but in the back of your mind you were thinking something totally congruent to what you were doing? Have you ever just known something didn’t feel right about a situation or a place you were at? This is your intuition at work. How do you use your intuition to help you in visualizing your dream? It’s simple start listening to it. Stop listening to the inner critic that keeps playing in your head, whether the words come from a negative spouse, parent, friend, or even yourself. Stop those words. Stop ridiculing yourself. Write out your thoughts about your dream, about the people in your dream and every other aspect of your dream. Instead of living by your emotions as you do this little exercise every day, your emotions will now be on paper and won’t be holding you back from accomplishing what you have set out to do.
  • Reason: Can you think logically through a set of steps to work out a problem? While visualizing our dream may include a lot of our own personal emotions that tie us to the dream, we need to get away from the emotions and learn to reason through some points to make our dreams a reality. We have to be able to use sound reasoning skills and prudent judgments when necessary to plow through roadblocks that may come up in the pursuit of our dreams.

I’ve just scratched the surface of these tools and how they are all interconnected with each other and our dreams. Being aware of them is the first step in using them in visualizing what we want in life. Using these tools to change our paradigms will help us in visualizing our dreams and propelling us forward in our health and in our life.

Where do you want your dreams to take you?

DAY 8: GOING FOR MY NO’S!

How many times does a child want to touch something that we warn not to? My youngest son, used to test my patience every moment of the day by trying to reach for things that were too high for him, and not safe for him to touch. I’ve learned much from the tenacity that this son was born with. He never let anything stand in his way of following his dream. He is living his dream as I write this, and I’m very proud of him for that. I’ve been asking myself “How many no’s do I go for in a day?” Am I like my son who used to wear me down by his persistence or do I give up and try to avoid all the no’s in life without trying?

Dreams

I am a 1099 employee and it is part of my business to teach people about my product. Last week I made no money. Why? Because I became disheartened by the no’s that I was receiving not realizing that I should be focusing more on the no’s then on the yes’s I get. Instead of being persistent in teaching people about my product, like my son’s persistent with me, I just stopped trying altogether. I stopped getting the no’s but I also stopped getting yes’s too.

So now I’m back to square one. I have made a challenge for myself to get 5 no’s every morning and another 5 no’s every afternoon, for the rest of the month. I’m tired of starting over every month only to realize that this business is a lot like my fitness life where I lose weight, I get comfortable and then I gain it all back, needing to start over yet again. So as my weight goes up and down, my work life does too. It is a roller coaster of a life I choose to lead when I give in to the no’s in my business life and my personal life.

Challenging myself to accept each no with the same resiliency of accepting a yes in both my personal and business life will change the very core of who I am. While I taught my son how to become persistent, he has taught me to hold on tight to my dreams and not let anything stand in the way. Going for my no’s should be a piece of cake now that I know my no’s will lead to my dream.

Ah Ha Moment

I finished my workout yesterday, cleaned up and sat down to read a book, when it dawned on me that in three months I will be a college graduate. Many people graduate college every year, so why am I so different? The dream of graduating college has been with me for 31 years. I remember it like yesterday when my friends went off to college, and I stayed behind working instead. I got married and raised a family. All the while knowing deep down inside that some day this dream would come true. I loved learning and each year when my sons entered a new school year, I would set my sights on learning something new too, that year. I learned how to simplify my life, do faux painting techniques,  all about different food allergies, how to use natural methods for health, and so many other things. I never grew tired of learning.

Four years ago when the education opportunity presented itself, and my husband was all for it, I began embarking my on my dream of having a college degree. Granted I started out pursuing an associate’s degree in medical office management but realized my heart was not in what I was studying. So I changed schools and focused on a Bachelor’s of Science degree in Health and Wellness. I have come to realize that we all need to find our passion, and do what we love to do. For me that is researching health news, sharing information on alternative health and wellness, and helping people learn to make better wellness choices.

I am living proof that even when we put our dreams on the back burner of life, they can still be accomplished if we are open to the possibilities and opportunities that come into our lives to change our circumstances. Join me as I share my passions of cooking, crafting, exercising, learning, laughing, loving and simple living.