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Self Sabotage & a Summertime Soup

Would you find me lazy and thoughtless if I posted a recipe without any measurements?

What if the photo of said recipe was taken with my old iphone on top of a wood table and not a marble countertop? 

Consider the possibility that I took the photos quickly and in not a good light. Mostly because I was hungry. (Hunger plays a role in most of my decision making). 

Would you still like me?

Would you still want to eat my soup?

The thing is, I really wanted to share this recipe. There are many recipes, tips, thoughts and bits of information that I'd like to share, but other things seem to get in the way. Things like perfectionism, self doubt, procrastination and Handmaids Tale.

This is something that has come up for healing for me in this past year as I have transitioned my life from Los Angeles to Boston. I have been given the gift and curse of questioning everything when it comes to my business.

I am not a food blogger. I have fewer followers on Instagram than your grandmother, and I am SO BAD at self-promotion, not because I don't like bringing attention to myself but because I'm surprisingly un-photogenic and can't seem to take a damn photograph that doesn't make me question why my husband married me (vain, I know). That and the fact that I really only show up for my marketing when I feel like it, a strategy we all know does not lead to success.

I also know a lot about nutrition, and am qualified to give nutritional advice. I am even more qualified to teach people how to move better, something which I guarantee is life changing. Resistance training is like medicine to the body-trust me when I say that you need it in your life.

A dedicated practitioner of the beginner's mind in all facets of life, I am obsessive passionate when it comes to staying up to date on the latest health and fitness research, trends and products. My idea of a good time is experimenting with this information in my own life in order to better relate to my clients. Thankfully I have like-minded friends and a mother that also work in the industry, with whom I can have endless thought provoking discussions.

Ultimately, my main objective is to improve the lives of others, while continuing to improve my own. I want my clients to feel: confident / comfortable in their bodies / strong / flexible / powerful / able / vulnerable / empowered / knowledgeable and whatever else it is that they want to feel. I love to teach them about their bodies and what kind of movement will benefit them. I love to support them in feeling connected to the big picture and how exercise and nutrition are connected and affect/are affected by other parts of life. I know in my bones that I have the ability to do this, as I've done it before and will do it again.

But what good are skills, knowledge, empathy, etc, if I'm not reaching you?

I will leave you with this. You, too, are something special. YOU have something unique to offer the world, and failing to do the uncomfortable work of getting yourself out there is actually a DISSERVICE to the rest of us. I would tell you not to let your self doubt get in the way, but who am I to talk?

Let's both take action right now. More specifically, imperfect action. One small step, together, toward our goals.

Mine is posting this insanely delicious, gorgeous, easy on the tummy, farm-to-table soup without any measurements. What's yours?


Local Summertime Carrot Soup


Ingredients: 

  • Bone Broth
  • Carrots
  • Kimchi  
  • Ghee
  • Micro Greens 
  • Salt/Pepper

 

Directions: 

Chop or grate carrots and heat up in a pot with the bone broth at about a 1:1 ratio. Once the carrots are cooked through, pour them in a blender with the carrots and kimchi. Blend to your desired consistency. Transfer back to the pot and stir in ghee and add salt & pepper to taste

Note: I bought every ingredient from the Boston Public Market. Feel free to substitute for anything that is local to you. If you prefer not to use animal products you could replace the bone broth with mushroom and the ghee with coconut or avocado oil. 

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A Meditation for Any Occasion

One of my favorite ways to practice mindfulness is with a body scan meditation. Not only is it a great way to tune into your body but it can also encourage you to notice your thoughts, emotions and sensations without judgement and then allow them to eventually pass as they do. It is also calming to the nervous system which is why I have been known to talk clients through it after a workout, or even beforehand if they are feeling stressed or ungrounded. Try it before bed, first thing in the morning or any time you need to check in. It is literally the LBD (little black dress) of meditations.

"You are the sky. Everything else, it's just the weather." -Pema Chödrön 

"You are the sky. Everything else, it's just the weather." -Pema Chödrön 


Body Scan Meditation 


Lay on your back with your palms facing up or sit tall in a chair with both feet planted on the floor. 

Close your eyes, and start to tune into your breath. Are your breaths deep and satisfying or shallow and quick? 

Take a few more moments simply noticing your breath. Feel free to bring your hands to your stomach or your heart if you are needing a little extra TLC. 

Starting with your right foot, begin to notice the physical sensations of your big toe. Move your way slowly through the other toes, then the arch, the top of the foot, the heel, the calf etc. 

Continue this process throughout your entire body allowing thoughts or feelings to pop up but trying not to let them pull you with them. Just breath and notice. 

You might take note of one side of the body, ie the left hip feeling different than the other side, ie the right hip. 

You might also notice where you may be holding tension, for instance in your jaw. Feel free to let the tension go if you can. 

Finish with the crown of the head, and when you're ready take a moment to notice your entire body as a whole. Sit with that for as long as you like. 

To come out of the meditation start to wiggle your fingers and toes, much like coming out of savasana. Take a few big stretches and gently flutter your eyes open. 

There are plenty of recordings of the body scan online, so feel free to use one of those. That said if you can remember the simple steps you'll find it lovely to do it in silence on your own. Enjoy!

 

 

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Staying Inspired

I am constantly on a mission to find things that inspire me lest I become stagnant in my life. 

In my mind, health is all about the ways in which we show up for our lives day in and day out. A million tiny decisions which all add up to become essentially who we are and the way we interact with ourselves and the world around us. It is no secret that I take a holistic approach to healthy living, so I consider everything from spending time with loved ones to reading a thrilling novel to eating a big salad acts of self care.

I can only hope you can relate to the experience of swimming in a sea of enjoyment when it comes to your health. Long leisurely walks, fun workouts, colorful food, trips to the farmer's market, good coffee, laughing with friends and delicious sleep, not to mention an episode of Friends (and another, and one more after that). I like to see it as a decadent mix of discipline and luxury - enjoying this body and mind we are given, as well as that of others, including mother earth.

Cheesy or not I'm going to say this: In a time of such overwhelming uncertainty, it is of the utmost importance that we strive to become the best and brightest versions of ourselves. These days I find myself feeling more strongly than ever before about the importance of what I do. I believe that a conscious lifestyle creates a foundation of strength and kindness that is necessary to make the world a better place. 

After doing some work to improve my gut health and bring more plants into my diet I currently find myself swimming in that health sea (not the most romantic sounding term), which inherently makes me more aware of the inspiration that envelopes me. I'm sure the gorgeous weather we've been having here in Boston doesn't hurt either. 

That being said I know myself, and perhaps you can relate: what comes up always comes down so I am making sure to enjoy this moment while also taking in all the wisdom I can to keep me going when it all comes down.

I'm known to send random emails, texts and Facebook messages to various people in my life sharing things that are of interest to me. I thought I'd share them with you as well, in hopes that it brings at least the tiniest glimmer of stimulus into your day!

This is what's been goin' on with me these past few days:

S-Town Podcast: Described as a gothic fairytale, this 7 episode story is odd, tragic, funny and hauntingly beautiful. I may have listened to the whole thing within two days, and plan to listen a second time. 

The Model Health Show: This podcast talks about all things health and fitness and is ideal for both experts and novices alike. The host, Shawn Stevenson is smart, humble and open minded. The latest episode about mental transformation was particularly full of gems and I recommend you put it on first thing tomorrow morning. 

Where to invade next: After many suggestions my husband and I finally watched this documentary and found it nothing short of delightful however disturbing at points. Michael Moore goes into various countries with the intention of learning what could be useful to bring to the US. My favorite section was Germany, where every day they are reminded of their dark history. By first acknowledging, honoring and grieving the darkness they are able to grow into the light and maintain a peaceful society. Beautiful!

Slow fashion: I've found that once you start giving a sh*t about what you put in your body, you start to notice the quality - or lack there of - in other areas of your life. For me it started with the products I use to clean my house and put on my skin, and after happily switching to natural and safe alternatives my interest (and disgust) has now moved to my wardrobe. I realized that I've spent my entire adult life with a perpetually crowded closet yet nothing to wear, and to make matters worse I have no idea under what conditions these clothes were made. I haven't the faintest idea who had to suffer to make something that sits in the back of my drawer, and frankly that feels entirely not ok to me.

It finally dawned on me that this is no way to live; that if I take the same approach to my wardrobe as I do to my food I may actually enjoy getting dressed in something besides fitness apparel while also clearing up unnecessary clutter. All the while supporting companies that actually take human welfare and the environment into account. My first step is to simply stop acquiring more clothing for a while and making due with what I have. In the meantime, here are some resources for you:

  • My good friend Megan from The Mass Minimalist who recently had a similar revelation of her own.
  • finny + dill, an ethical fashion blog I am enchanted to have discovered.
  • The Curated Closet,  a minimalistic fashion blog and book which educates us on finding our personal style and choosing high quality clothing. 

My little family: Have you seen that viral video of the little girl yelling into the mirror about everything she loves in her life? That's me. I love my husband! I love my cats! I love my parents! I love my friends! I love my apartment! I-love-shrimp-cocktails! *Clap*. The list goes on.  

Boston in the Spring: Words can't really do it justice. You'll just have to come and experience it for yourself. 

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Baked Fish w/ Mediterranean Cauliflower Rice

Hello, friends!

I thought I would pop in and share a  meal has been on regular rotation in my household lately and has yet to disappoint. 

In an attempt to feel bright and clear headed for the onset of Spring I have been focusing on my gut health and am making sure my meals are nutrient dense and easy to digest. Taste is still a main priority, of course, and I am enjoying getting creative in the kitchen with a variety of clean proteins, healthy fats and all the colorful fruits and veggies I know do my body good. 

Naturally once a successful meal makes its way into my life it is likely I will repeat it again and again. Some may call it obsessive, but I prefer to think that if it ain't broke don't fix it. 

Without further ado, here it is in all its simple glory - light, satisfying and perfect for lunches and dinners alike. Feel free to use any type of fish or even chicken or tempeh. Honestly, you can change the whole damn recipe if you'd like. It is your life, after all. Enjoy!

Baked White Fish:

(Serves 2)

  • 1lb White Fish such as Halibut, Cod or Haddock (I buy mine at the Boston Public Market)
  • Avocado Oil
  • Lemon Juice
  • Chili Flakes
  • Pink Sea Salt & Pepper 

Preheat oven to 350. Place the fish in a Pyrex or other baking dish. Coat each side of the fish with a generous drizzle of avocado oil and lemon juice and sprinkle on the chili flakes, salt and pepper. Place dish in oven and cook 15-20 minutes or until flaky.

Mediterranean Cauli-Rice:

(Serves 2)

  • 1/2 Bag Frozen Cauliflower Rice
  • 1 Cup Dinosaur Kale, finely chopped
  • 1 Cucumber, diced
  • Handful of Olives, diced
  • 2 T Fresh Parsley, diced
  • 2 T Ghee
  • Coconut Aminos
  • Red Boat Fish Sauce
  • Pink Sea Salt & Pepper 

Heat up the ghee in a skillet and add the cauliflower rice and kale. Heat until cooked through and add in a sprinkling of coconut aminos, fish sauce, sea salt and pepper. Remove from heat and combine with the cucumber, olives and parsley. 

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Pick Me Up Potion

I've always had an affinity for medicinal tonics and hot drinks. Show me something that's healing, tasty and novel and I'm sold.

Perhaps it was my obsession with witchcraft as a kid. I was crazy for Sabrina the Teenage Witch, The Craft, Hocus Pocus and The Wizard of Oz, and bought several earnest books about witchcraft which I have kept front and center in our bookshelf, mostly in order to startle the cat sitters when we are out of town.

I truly believed that one day I would develop magical powers. (Here's lookin' at you, 30th birthday). The closest I've come to that, however, is experimenting in my kitchen and finding various ways to use interesting ingredients that promote health, wellbeing and mental clarity. After all, we now know that witches were healers. 

There is a huge part of me that has learned to be grounded and minimalistic in my approach to wellness. Eat whole foods that are grown locally and sustainably. Eat 3-4 well rounded meals per day with appropriate amounts of protein, carbohydrates and fat. Walk a lot and do intelligent movement in the gym. Enjoy yourself when out with friends and family. Have fun, be kind and never deprive yourself. Let me just say, as a disclaimer, that this part of my approach is entirely responsible for keeping me healthy. It is my foundation, and without it I would be unstable. 

Yet I find myself wanting a little extra, which is not to say that you should too. It's just that I personally crave a sprinkling of fun and enchantment on an otherwise uncomplicated situation.

I become giddy at the mention of wild mushrooms, pearl powder, collagen, kombucha, matcha or ashwagandha. If only you could have seen me the day I read Amanda Chantal Bacon's Moon Juice Cookbook. Heart pounding, I ordered a juicer, nut milk bag and dehydrator faster than you can say "lusty adaptogenic brew". (This is the kind of language she uses to describe her Hot Sex Milk on p. 121). I have found few things more seductive, food wise, than this book.  

I also find it exciting to learn of the benefits that humble kitchen and pantry staples such as cinnamon, turmeric, pink sea salt, parsley, lemon and ginger possess. 

That time I went overboard at the Moon Juice Shop

That time I went overboard at the Moon Juice Shop

This recipe is in a similar vain to Bacon's recipes. A zingy hot cocktail to leave you balanced, sharp and light on your feet. Matcha is stimulating yet calming, and boasts 3x the amount of antioxidants than regular green tea. Lemon is all kinds of healthy with its high vitamin c and phytochemical limonene content. Ginger is stimulating in its own way while also being soothing to the digestive system. Finally, the Beauty Dust. An absolutely delightful mix of beautifying herbs!

Pick Me Up Potion

8oz Hot Water

 1 tsp Matcha Powder

1 inch piece of Ginger Root

1/4 Lemon with the Peel 

1 tsp Moon Juice Beauty Dust  (feel free to substitute with a green or collagen powder!) 

Throw all the ingredients into your blender and blend until smooth and frothy. Enjoy!

At the risk of sounding cheesy I believe that life is brimming with magic when we are willing to acknowledge it. I see it with my clients all the time - when low back pain disappears, energy increases and it just becomes easier to physically move through life. How starting the morning off in a positive way changes the course of their entire day. 

I feel that magic when my stress melts away while chopping vegetables for dinner at the end of a long day; when I take a moment to look up at the trees on a wintry dog walk through the woods with my mom; when I'm walking home in a pure state of bliss after a delicious yoga practice. Heck, sometimes all it takes is a great cup of coffee. It may not be the type of witchcraft my younger self had imagined, but it feels pretty magical to me. 

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