Bringing Your Dreams to Light and Life

One of my Big Dreams came true. I’m a published author.  Although I “knew” this day would come, it didn’t unfold as I’d imagined.

Have you ever wished and hoped for something, and then had the courage to start taking action on it, and then failed a few (or many) times, and worked on getting better and put in more time and effort because, in your bones, you knew this is something you must do–even if it doesn’t earn you a living or recognition–because you can contribute in some small way to the world? 

And then, after all the doubts and fears that you aren’t good enough–all those Who do you think you are for doing this? What makes YOU so special?–filled your ears and then your inner lion roared back that you are indeed worthy and every amazing accomplishment ever done was by a someone (who was once a no one) who did something and why not you

And then one day, that thing–that you wanted so badly and worked for so determinedly–happened. Not just in your imagination, daily visualizations, or dreams. For real. It’s an incredible feeling, isn’t it?

dawn-on-mountain

That’s the path my dream of becoming a published author took. Long, winding, challenging, and in its own time frame.

I’ve written two books before, but you won’t find them anywhere because they never made it past a few drafts. Although I’ve made peace with that part of my history and did grow from it, those “failures” were definitely in the forefront of my mind when I set out to write this current book. This time, however, I was going to get out of my own way. I wasn’t going to let fear and doubt stop me from believing in my Big Dream or taking continuous action toward it.

I had experiences and knowledge I knew could help someone, and it was my soul’s and heart’s wish to give it to that someone. I wrote my book for the friends who know they are meant for something more but can’t see their path. I wrote my book for the strangers I’d overheard venting that they need to change their life now. I wrote my book for the high school and college students who are frustrated because they don’t know what they’re meant to do or be. I wrote my book for the adults who suddenly find themselves living someone else’s life.

I wrote my book for all these people because I was them. In realizing I’d discovered, learned, and gone through things that could help others, I couldn’t keep it to myself. And I didn’t.

As a friend and fellow author, Jai Maa, says: “There are no goals bigger than you. There are only goals that require you to be a bigger you.” I took that encouragement to heart. I hope you can too.

Be big, bold, and bright. Go after what you want. Let no one and nothing stop you. In bringing your soul’s dreams to light and life, you are making the world a better place for all of us. 

To learn more about my book Meant for More: Create Your Dream Life, Plan Your Path, and Start Living It Now please visit my author website

 

4 Wintertime Tips for a Healthy, Holistic Kitchen

Just as our wardrobes change as we transition into winter, so should our homes.  One of the most important places to make a few tweaks is in the kitchen.  I asked natural foods chef, Andrea Beaman, and organic recipe queen, Carrie Vitt, for their top wintertime tips for creating a healthy, holistic kitchen.

1.  Stock up on bone broths

“For me a holistic healthy kitchen in the winter time includes lots of homemade stock in the freezer (fish stock, chicken stock, duck stock).  It’s a great mineral and amino acid rich broth to use in warming soups and stews.  I think stocks are so important to any home kitchen that I have an entire chapter dedicated to stocks in my new book: Health is Wealth – Make a Delicious Investment in You!

~ Andrea Beaman, Natural Foods Chef, author, and television host dedicated to alternative healing and green, sustainable living.  Try her Basic Beef Bone Stock and Chicken Stock.

Carrie's chicken stock recipe in action

I always keep it [homemade chicken stock] on hand in the freezer for when the first sign of a cold arrives.

~ Carrie Vitt, author of Deliciously Organic: Simple Dishes, Vibrant Flavors Everyone will LoveShe makes a tasty immune-building chicken stock that incorporates the whole bird (cooked chicken and broth, a two-fer!). 

2.  Cook with coconut oil

Carrie often uses coconut oil when whipping up one of her fabulously healthy meals because of its antiviral properties.  It’s also safe for high heat cooking, making it a great all-purpose cooking oil.  When the temperatures drop, coconut oil will solidify; but it melts easily.

Side note:  As I mentioned in this post, I use coconut oil (separate batch for hygiene) as a moisturizer too.  It melts in seconds when applied to skin warm from a hot shower.  It’s antiviral/antibacterial properties work topically too, so you’re moisturizing and protecting at the same time.

3.  Keep immune-boosting supplements on hand

Carrie also recommends her favorite vitamin C powder–Pure Radiance C, made from organic and wild berries–as a supplement to support immune health during flu season.

I swear by Thieves Essential Oil blend from Young Living.  It has 100% therapeutic-grade essential oils of clove, cinnamon, lemon, eucalyptus, and rosemary that combine to deliver antimicrobial, antiviral, and antibacterial protection.  During times of stress (hello holidays!) and flu season this oil, along with Inner Defense Softgels (which also contain Thieves but with oregano, thyme, and lemongrass) give me a fighting chance of staying healthy.

4.  Sharpen your knife skills

No, you don’t need to practice knife throwing or even perfect your slicing technique.  All you have to do is sharpen your main prep knife.  Why?  Dull knives don’t just make hard winter veggies difficult to cut, they are a more serious hazard to your health than sharp knives.  Most knife injuries occur due to dull blades, which need more pressure to cut, making it more likely for the knife to slip off food and cut your hand instead.  Not a jolly good time.  If you don’t have a knife sharpener (or don’t know how to use the one you have), you can get them sharpened at hardware stores, cooking retailers, and some restaurants.  A Japanese restaurant in my neighborhood offers the service for $5.00. (These are NYC prices, so they’re probably cheaper elsewhere.)  No excuses…remain sharp for safety!

Yes, I’m still here!

Sorry for being MIA as of late.  Although I have good reasons, I’ve been feeling awfully guilty for being off the radar for so long.  This post is to catch everyone up so we can all move forward…ok, so I can move forward.

Reason #1:  We have new addition to the family…a furry one!

Bright-eyed Riley

We welcomed Riley, a glossy bright-eyed black kitten into our house on August 5th.  It took a lot of adjustment for my husband and I, who haven’t had to deal with a toddler-like bundle of joy for quite a while.  We’d forgotten how much time and energy it took, and how much sleep you have to give up.  It was especially difficult for 6-year-old Starsky.  His brother Hutch, who passed away last October, was the only cat he’d ever known.  Now there was a tiny terror in the house.  After several weeks carefully integrating Riley into Starsky’s home, all our hard work seems to have paid off.  Starsky is getting his daily workouts in again, and we foresee some serious snuggling in the near future.  Riley’s ability to transition from knocked out to cracked out in two seconds flat has presented a challenge for me.  Since I work at home, dealing with his boundless energy and my responsibilities has been a juggling act.   However, he and I are both getting better at our roles.

Starsky and Riley, early morning bird-watching

Reason #2:  I’m writing a book!

So far it’s been exciting and depressing and thrilling and scary and fulfilling and arduous all rolled into one big ball of emotion.  And it’s not nearly done yet!  Right now I’m finishing up my (hopefully) kick-butt proposal to send off.  I got some interest in April when I pitched the idea to agents, but now I’ll be in better shape when I pitch again in October at the IWWG’s Big Apple Conference.  More details on my book soon!

Reason #3:  I’m writing an article that ties in to an upcoming television series!

Have you heard about ABC’s new series Pan Am?  Well, it just so happens my grandmother was a stewardess for Pan American Airways in the 1940’s.  And she wasn’t just a stewardess, she was the ambassador of the airline, greeting dignitaries and historical figures, as well as appearing in magazines and advertisements.  My grandmother has enjoyed recalling her whirlwind years, and had her first on-camera interview by a news reporter a few weeks ago.  Her story has always been amazing to us, but seeing that others would now be interested in it got my cousin and I thinking about pitching her story to newspapers, which we’re in the midst of.  So no more details yet, but if it gets published I’ll post the link here…and if it doesn’t get published, I’ll post the article here.  Either way, you’ll hear about it.

So you see, there are reasons why it’s been quiet around here.  But all the while, I’ve been cooking up some tasty posts to serve you very soon.

Why we could all use a little Dr. Seuss in our lives

Green Eggs and Ham. Yum.

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Oh, Dr. Seuss, may I gush praise bombastical? For your stories are magical, creative, fantastical.  You’re a master of words that are funny and silly– some decidedly fake like that Milli Vanilli.  Your characters are wise with the plans they devise, and they grow from life lessons right in front of our eyes.  Oh, Dr. Seuss, your work’s such a prize, I think everyone could use a little you in their lives!

The paragraph I wrote above pales in comparison to the skills of the great Theodor Seuss Geisel–aka Dr. Seuss.  However, it serves its purpose as an intro to an adored writer of children’s books even adults gladly admit to loving.  I remember eagerly opening his books as a child, the enticing titles catching my instant attention.  My eyes widened and darted about in an effort to soak up all the colorful pictures and delightful rhyming words.  In one sitting, I could come away from a Dr. Seuss visit with a deeper imagination and a little life lesson too. What more could you ask for from a kid’s book?

Why children of all ages love Dr. Seuss

  1. Whimsical, fantastical worlds.  Only someone who is young at heart and posses a childlike sense of awe and excitement could create such vibrant characters and places.
  2. Wordplay.  He uses tasty, juicy words and phrases…and then somehow rhymes them.  And a great deal of his words are completely made up. Wouldn’t you love for it to be socially acceptable to create your own words whenever you wanted?  I know I would!
  3. Valuable messages.  His stories and characters may be figments of the imagination, but we can apply his messages to a very real world.
  4. Pure joy.  I’m sure he had a great time writing those books.  He put a lot of love and joy into his work, and as a result, got just as much love and joy back from his readers.

I hope our appreciation for Dr. Seuss books doesn’t fall by the wayside on our journey through adulthood.  Being an “adult” doesn’t mean putting a lid on imagination and scoffing at all things unserious.  We should have time to be silly and play, and practice looking at things from a child’s point of view.  Schedule it in if you must!  Making these actions a habit will result in us becoming more well-rounded, happier (may I even say more evolved?) adults.  Now if you’ll excuse me, I have some funsillyrific adult responsibilities to cross off my to-do list!

What do you think?  Do you agree with me, or do you think I’m writing this post from a padded room?

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