Thursday, January 26, 2012


Yesterday I heard the news that a friend is closing her business. She and I have talked a lot over the past several months about what I went through with closing Lifetime Moments two years ago (we didn't know each other then!), and while I knew it was a path she might have to be taking as well, I was still surprised by the news. It is so hard to lose something that you have created from the ground up, taken leaps of faith for, shed blood, sweat, and tears over. She has been passionate about her business and her heart has been in everything she has done for her customers, and yet here she is walking down that path. My heart breaks for her.

It is so strange to think that that was where I was two years ago. I can see now what a dark time it was for me in my life, but also that it truly opened a new door for me as well. People don't really seem to get it when I say that losing the business was one of the best things that happened to me, but it truly was. I am living my life as a different person today, and so much happier. I can only hope for my friend that she finds a light at the end of the tunnel as well and that two years from now she can also look back and reflect with peace on her decision of closing that chapter of her life. In the meantime, I'll be sad for her, and sad for the local community losing a wonderful resource.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012


Could timing be much worse? This is my first broken bone of any kind. Apparently that loud crack I heard when I fell out of headstand Sunday morning in class was a small fracture near my right index finger knuckle. Had xrays for the first time too (well other than dental). 4 weeks with this splint. Thankfully the Dr told me that I could do yoga as long as I have the splint on to prevent the finger from going backward. It's a little swollen but I'm not in any pain.

I went to yoga tonight and was thankful that Cheryl pushed me to not use this as an excuse to either back off or be afraid. I even did one wheel and did a tripod headstand (at the wall) for the first time. Keeping the right pressure in my hands in downward dog and not going into my wrists seems to be the most awkward. 

I've spent the evening reading up on nutrition to help heal broken bones. Leafy greens, broccoli, fish, yogurt, nuts. All on the menu. Thankfully that's how Ive been eating!

I'm a little bummed still because I wanted to be at my top shape in 10 days to get the most out of the weekend, but am trying to make the best of it and look for other ways I can learn about my practice and focus on other aspects of it. 

Monday, January 23, 2012

Laws of Transformation

In less than two weeks I'll be in Toronto for the Baptiste Foundations in Action weekend yoga immersion. Yoga is about so much more than the physical practice. In preparation, I decided to read through a couple of Baron's books to refresh and energize me. I'm currently reading "40 Days to Personal Revolution". I'm hoping someday our studio offers this program to go through as a group, or perhaps I'll consider doing the digital version in the future (one of my teachers is currently doing this so I look forward to hearing what she thought when it's done). One of the key teachings in this book is the Laws of Transformation. These can guide us in growth to living a truthful and healthy life. Here's my notes on the laws:

#1 Seek the Truth - have the courage to face the pure truth of ourselves so we can move on and grow in more honest and authentic ways. You must accept yourself as you are, then you can change - self-acceptance.

#2 Be Willing to Come Apart - we need to get to the point where we are finally willing to give up control so that we can experience the healing we need. When we control the things we are not meant to control, we are interfering with our natural success and potential. The way of the universe is for all things to move in the direction of healing, that is, wholeness. The body wants to heal itself, our emotional body is seeking balance, our spirit wants redemption; however, we need to get ourselves out of the way in order for our natural health to shine through. When we surrender, we receive. It is only when we re willing to give up the fragile hold we have on our illusions and come apart that we can begin to see the truth, surrender, and begin anew.

#3 Step out of Your Comfort Zone - Life is never static - we are either awakening and growing or numbing out and spiraling downward. Stepping out of our comfort zone means dropping the patterns and stories of the past. If we don't step out of the known - the comfort zone - we bring yesterday's limited thinking into the present, dooming the present to be just like the past. When you keep repeating the same things, you get the same results. Many of us would rather cling to the familiar than risk the unknown. Face fears head on to dissolve their hold over us. Let the past die. We are afraid to let go, to face the groundlessness and uncertainty. Take the journey inward - the way out is in. Once we've gone inward we can step out beyond our comfort zone and find the courage to flow from our hearts. You must face your fears, abide in unconditional openness and cut through your tendencies to hold on. Let go of everything and hold onto nothing so that virtue can shine through.

#4 Commit to Growth - Either commit to a change of heart and mind and live it out, or you are just playing around. Growth requires a singleness of mind - a total commitment to the path of growth - no wavering, no detours, absolute commitment to staying present, unconditional commitment to discovering and living by the truth within. We are the only ones who know and hear our internal dialogues, and we are the only ones who can make the choice to stay and unfold. Call your conflicts and troubles lessons and remember that every experience developes some latent force within you - you will grow vigorous and happy, however adverse your circumstances may be.

#5 Shift Your Vision - the third eye is the source of our spiritual vision. If we have had an opening and cleansing of the heart, the right energy can be released and spark life in this spiritual eye. If we pay attention to living according to our higher mind and our morals, it is said that this eye comes to life, we begin to see ourselves and the world through new eyes. Whatever spiritual or physical tranformation process we are going through, we are seeking to undo and unlearn a thought system that has blinded our true vision. To shift our vision means looking at the usual things with fresh eyes. As we start to spiritually awaken, our new vision allows us to see that most of our obstacles are created within our own hearts. A vision shift calls for attention, intention and faith. Whatever you give your positive or negative attention to, you will energize. Whatever you focus on, you fortify. Intention - when you hold an awareness of what you need to do in the back of your mind, you direct your energy (and the universe) in that direction. Right intent from your pure heart. There is a certain leap of faith we need to take. The real phenomenon is in our concsciousness, in the power of what's possible.

#6 Drop What You Know - just be the change. More education is not always the solution. What is needed is a special kind of awakening that brings you to understand things for yourself. Dropping your brain means to rediscover, trust, and grow from this blessed state - which the ancient ones called living by faith. At a certain point we all need to make the shift from living from our head into trusting what's in our heart. We need to become intuitve beings. Oversensitivity to other people's words has an insidious way of eroding our faith in our own perceptions. Find out what the inner teacher has to say. Cast out our self-doubt. When we really let go, suddenly we open up and there is space for new energy and insight. There is such wisdom and healing power in not knowing. We don't change by thinking, we change by being and doing with a pure intent. Be fully present and open.

#7 Relax with What Is - When we relax in the face of stress, a power greater than ourselves can act through us. Put our thoughts, our effort, our resistance, ur reaction aside and trust in an intelligence that is smarter than we are. The moment you stop forcing a result, you develop a mental and muscular poise under pressure.

#8 Remove the Rocks - Unlearn pride, anger, fear, conditioning, resistance and come back to our natural way of being. Transformation comes not by adding things on but by removing what didn't belong in the first place. There is something perfect already within us. We think that we have struggles and problems in life, but the only problem we have is a disconnection from our center. When we come back to self, all the other things begin to take care of themselves, and our lives begin to flow. The greatest power we have over ourselves is our ability to change our minds about ourselves.There is tremendous power in just knowing what is going on within us, not so that we can work on our stuff but so that we can begin to release it. We become very adept at knowing all about our problems, but the key is not to stop there, it is to see beyond pathology into an enlightened vision. If we can soften our heart, give up some of our old ways of being, and reconnect to the truth, our problems will give us up.

#9 Don't Rush the Process - Real growth doesn't come from pushing through or breaking out of anything. It comes from a gentle melting in. through the practice of patience we increase the gap between stimulus and response. We learn to be okay with our restlessness and our sense of guilt about not doing enough, and then we can hopefully begin to let these things go.If we are so wound up in getting somewhere, we don't realize that every step of the way we missed where we were. The very struggle of the process is what makes you sharp and gives you valuable experience and maturity. The greatest benefits come from the small shifts that move us into new directions. Our greatest source of wisdom is what is happening to us right now, where we are. Commitment to patience.

#10 Be True to Yourself - Look within to discover what you know in your heart to be right and then act on it. Live by our conscience, our own intuitive light. Have to be willing to go against the status quo, whether others approve or not. When you say or do something that is completely true to you, you access your gretest power and move closer to authentic whole-life health. You need to constantly be on the alert to keep things clean. In this way of being, you are being true to yourself, and to others.

#11 Be Still and Know - meditation brings you into the present moment=perfect teacher. You will be less reactive and more calm in challenging moments. You will be more anchored to your conscience which allows you to make good decisions with less confusion. The truth will follow us and poke at us until we acknowledge it. We have become masters at drowning out that truth, that small quiet voice within.This inner knowing whispers the way to live our brightest light if we would only stop and stay still enough to listen, and then humble ourselves enough to follow.  Eventually our aim is to have our inner stillness reflect outward into all the comings and goings of our lives.

#12 Understand That the Whole Is the Goal - We don't transform in parts. Every aspect of ourselves and our lives is interconnected with every other one. Health is wholeness. The goal is to make peace with all the tendrils and conflicts of your life, both inside and out, weaving the strands together into your own spiritual coat of many colors. In the end, if you dedicate your energies to detaching from struggle, giving up fear, taking right action, practicing true patience within yourelf, you will find that all the pieces of your life begin to radiate with the luminosity of whole and true health.

Thursday, January 19, 2012


I remember the first time I was able to get up into headstand. In months leading up to it I recall commenting that it was too much pressure on my head, or that my arms weren't strong enough to hold my body up. With practice, and increased strength (and perhaps a few more pounds lost), I did it. And I was so excited. Now when inversions came along and everyone pulled their mat to the wall, I could go up into headstand too. I love the feeling of being balanced, it really does feel weightless, and it is invigorating. So, for months, mat pulled to wall, 10 seconds later, I'm in headstand - but I needed the wall behind me to kick up to. I didn't need it for support, once I was up, I was up and balanced away from the wall. So, my current nemesis is getting up to headstand in a controlled way so that I can do it without the wall. I am having such a tough time with this. Is it because for so long I have been kicking up? Is it not enough core strength? Is it not pressing my elbows down enough? Is it not bring my shoulders back enough? or maybe a combination. But I am determined to get this! My goal has been to be able to do this before going to Toronto in a couple weeks, but I'm not sure it's doable. I'm going to try though! Yesterday I worked on it a little in Deb's class in the morning, then after coming home very frustrated and being so hard on myself, Thad insisted on working on it with me in the afternoon in our basement yoga room. Since he's 'discovered' uddiyana bandha this week, he's convinced it's the answer to everything. I do see that sucking in my abdomen gets my legs closer and my back straighter and reminds me to use my core, but I don't think it's the whole answer to my problem. Anyway, I did do a little better with it, more controlled. Then last night we went to Yoga Center for Healthy Living in Brighton as part of Thad's teacher training (he is observing classes at 5 other studios). Lee Ann is a wonderful teacher, very nurturing and very knowledgeable. This was an Ashtanga class, something neither of us had done before. At one point there was opportunity for headstand, in the middle of the room, not against the wall. So, I gave it another try with Thad spotting me, but my arms were just too worn out from all the yoga throughout the day. I'm going to commit to working on it every day though, hoping to get it soon!

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Roasted Winter Vegetables with Cannellini Beans

Those poor forgotten winter root vegetables. Are they old fashioned? I don't remember ever having rutabaga or parsnips growing up, but I know my great grandmother probably cooked with them. It's time to bring them back! These veggies were SO good!!  Brussels sprouts are also in this mix, another underrated veggie with image issues, they are very good for you and help with the production of detoxifying enzymes in the liver. Cut and half and roasted, they are so yummy, not reminiscent of soggy cabbage like bites in the least. Definitely will make again (and looking forward to having dinner #2 reheated tonight!). Another Whole Living recipe from the 2012 Detox diet.

Roasted Winter Vegetables with Cannellini Beans
serves 4


  • 1 large leek, sliced
  • 6 garlic cloves, peeled
  • 1/2 rutabaga, peeled and chopped
  • 2 parsnips, peeled and chopped
  • 2 carrots, peeled and chopped
  • 1 sweet potato, peeled and chopped
  • 10 brussels sprouts, trimmed and halved
  • 3 TB olive oil, plus more for drizzling
  • 1 TB plus 1 tsp balsamic vinegar
  • coarse salt and pepper
  • 1 can cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
  1. Heat oven to 425 degrees. In a large bowl toss leek, garlic, rutabaga, parsnips, carrots, sweet potato and brussels sprouts with olive oil and 1 TB balsamic vinegar. Spread out on a rimmed baking sheet (I use my Pampered Chef Large Bar pan) and season with salt and pepper.
  2. Roast, tossing once, until golden brown and tender, 25-30 minutes. Remove from oven and stir in beans.
  3. Roast until beans are crisped, about 5 minutes more. Toss veggies with 1 tsp vinegar and drizzle with oil. 

Watercress Salad with Sardines and Clementines

I've never had sardines in my life, ever. I would say both Thad and I were a little hesitant about it, there seems to be such an aversion to them. In the spirit of trying new things and following the recipes of the Whole Living detox, this was our lunch. I was very pleasantly surprised! There was some semblance to tuna, except not as dry. Sardines are very rich in omega-3s and vitamin B12. The combination of flavors and textures in this salad was excellent!

Watercress Salad with Sardines and Clementines
serves 2


  • zest and juice of 1 small lemon
  • 1 TB olive oil
  • coarse salt and fresh ground pepper
  • 2 cups watercress sprigs (I used the whole bunch I had bought)
  • 1/4 red onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 TB fresh tarragon (this was 2 large sprigs for me, I removed the leaves and chopped them)
  • 2 clementines, peeled and sectioned
  • 1 4oz can olive oil wild-caught pacific sardines, drained and roughly chopped
  • 1/4 cup toasted pepitas (pumpkin seeds)
  1. Whisk lemon zest and juice with olive oil. Season with salt and pepper.
  2. Place pepitas in a small dry skillet and toast over a medium-high heat.
  3. Combine watercress, red onion and tarragon in a medium bowl. Add in vinaigrette and toss well. Divide onto two salad plates.
  4. Top with clementine sections, sardines and pepitas. Season with salt and pepper.

Red Lentil Soup with Turnips

This was my first time using red lentils - and surprise, they open up and are yellow when cooked! Another recipe from Whole Living, from week 2 of the detox diet this month, only slightly adapted.

Red Lentil Soup with Turnips
makes 8 cups


  • 2 TB olive oil
  • 1 yellow onion, diced
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 3 celery stalks and their leaves, diced
  • 2 large tomatoes, chopped
  • 1 1/2 cups red lentils
  • 1 turnip, peeled and diced
  • 1 quart vegetable stock
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh flat leaf parsley
  • 1 tsp red wine vinegar
  • coarse salt and pepper
  1. In a pot, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add onion, garlic and celery. Cook, stirring, until tender, 6-8 minutes.
  2. Increase heat to high and add tomatoes. Cook for 1 minute. Add lentils, turnip, vegetable stock and water.
  3. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer until lentils are tender. About 20-25 minutes. Stir in parsley and vinegar. Season with salt and pepper.

 I love lentil soup and was happy with this one, although I do think it needs a little more spice next time. Will definitely make again and I could see this being versatile with whatever root veggies you have available. Might throw some carrots in too next time. (add more water if you add extra veggies!)

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Kale Carrot Juice

I didn't take a photo of my juice this morning because, to be honest, it was brown and I didn't have high hopes for the taste. I was wrong! It was SO good! I just wish it had made more. Maybe a better quality juicer would get more juice out of the kale. It looked like so much produce before I started loading it in.

Kale Carrot Juice
serves 2 (12 oz each)

entire bunch of Kale
5 handfuls baby spinach
3 small green apples
2 inches of ginger
8 carrots
1 TB lemon juice (I added in at the end)

Monday, January 16, 2012

Amaranth Clusters

A healthy whole foods snack! I finally got some amaranth at Better Health Market this weekend so was able to make these. It's one of Whole Living's detox recipes. I did add in some ground flax for some extra fiber too.

Amaranth Clusters
makes 18

1 1/2 cups rolled oats
1/2 cup amaranth
1/2 cup macadamia nuts, toasted and chopped
1/2 cup dried cherries, chopped
1/2 cup dried apricots, chopped
1/4 cup honey
2 large eggs (whites only)
1 TB ground flax seed
kosher salt


  1. Preheat oven to 350. Toast nuts in a small dry skillet on the stove top.
  2. Combine oats, amaranth, macadamia nuts, dried fruit, honey and flax in a medium bowl. Whisk egg whites with 1/4 tsp salt until foamy. Pour over mix and stir to combine.
  3. Use silpats or parchment on your baking sheets. Scoop mixture and pat into 3 inch rounds on baking sheet. I used a large Pampered Chef cookie scoop. Bake, rotating try, until clusters are golden brown, 14-15 minutes. Let cool completely. Store in an airtight container for up to 1 week.
per cluster: 110 calories, 3.7g fat, 9.1mg sodium, 154mg potassium, 21.7g carbs, 3g fiber, 8.1g sugars, 2.7g protein.

Red Everything Smoothie

I've been doing a lot of juicing the past couple weeks, with a few smoothies thrown in there. This morning seemed like a smoothie was in order, in the interest of saving time and getting in some extra protein and fiber. Everything went in the vitamix in 3 minutes flat!

Red Everything Smoothie
serves 2 (4 cups)


  • 1 medium beet, scrubbed and roughly chopped
  • beet greens from beet
  • 1 1/2 cups red cabbage (I just eyed it and cut off a chunk)
  • 1 cup frozen sweet red cherries
  • 1 red pear
  • 2 cups water
  • handful of ice cubes
  • dash cinnamon
  • 1 TB chia seeds (usually I use 2 but I just ran out!)
  • 3 TB Hemp Protein powder
  • 1/2 tsp wheatgrass powder

Next time I might add in a banana or 1/2 avocado for some added creaminess

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Baked Tilapia with Broccoli, Apple, Fennel Slaw

Fennel is another one of those veggies I haven't had a long relationship with. I think it was just last year I tried it for the first time. The slaw with this recipe is so so delicious, and the tilapia was simple and very moist. Really almost any white fish could be used in this recipe, the original recipe from Whole Living used trout.

Baked Tilapia with Broccoli, Apple, Fennel Slaw
serves 2


  • 2 fillets tilapia
  • coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
  • extra virgin olive oil for drizzling
  • 1 lemon (or lime) thinly sliced
  • 1 shallot, thinly sliced
  • 1 TB tahini
  • 1 tsp grated lemon zest, plus 1 TB lemon juice
  • 1 TB  apple sauce
  • 2 broccoli stalks, peeled and julienned (about 1 cup)
  • 1/3 bulb fennel, thinly sliced
  • 1 carrot, peeled and julienned
  • 1/2 green apple, peeled, cored and julienned
  • 1 TB chopped fresh parsley
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Cut 2 pieces of parchment paper to about 12x16 inches.
  2. Arrange one fish fillet in the center of each parchment. Season with salt and pepper, top with lemon slices and sliced shallots. Drizzle with olive oil. Fold parchment by joining long sides together and make a few 1/4 inch folds to seal. Fold ends like you're wrapping a gift and tuck underneath. Place on a rimmed baking sheet. Bake until packet is puffed, about 12-14 minutes. Remove from oven and let rest for 5 minutes.
  3. In small bowl, whisk together tahini, lemon zest, juice, applesauce, and 1 TB water. Season with salt.
  4. Stir in broccoli stalk, fennel, carrot, apple and parsley until combined. 
This slaw makes a large amount, took up 1/2 of each of our plates! I could see making this slaw by itself again, maybe as a side to black bean burgers. 

Still need to find the julienne attachment for my mandolin or else buy a new one! Lots of small chopping going on here today, good thing this recipe was worth it!

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Hearty Broccoli Soup

This is not your rich heavy cream of broccoli soup, but don't let that fool you into thinking it's not thick and filling! Recipe adapted from Whole Living. We had this for a lunch and dinner this past week, it stores well in the fridge and would probably freeze well also.

Hearty Broccoli Soup
makes about 6 cups or 4 servings


  • 1 1b broccoli florets
  • 2 TB extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 yellow onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 15oz can cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
  • 2 cups vegetable stock
  • 1 cup water
  • kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 2 TB pine nuts, toasted
  1. Steam broccoli until tender and bright green, about 4 minutes. Let cool slightly. Reserve 1/2 cup small florets for serving garnish.
  2. Heat oil in a medium pot over medium heat. Saute onion for about 6 minutes until translucent. Add in garlic and saute another minute.
  3. Add beans, stock and water and bring to simmer. Simmer for 5 minutes.
  4. Remove from heat and add broccoli.
  5. Blend soup in your Vitamix (or use an immersion blender) until smooth.
  6. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  7. Garnish each bowl with broccoli florets and toasted pine nuts.

Friday, January 13, 2012

Awareness and Practice

I'm sure I'm not the only one who reads articles, blogs or books for self improvement or personal development. Sometimes I feel overwhelmed by all the messages - so many things to take in and put into practice in my life. I just finished one such book, The Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz. The message is simple - yet so huge at the same time - follow these four agreements in your life and you'll find happiness and be at peace with yourself: #1 Be Impeccable with your Word, #2 Don't Take Anything Personally, #3 Don't Make Assumptions, and #4 Always Do Your Best. None of those are so simple to put into practice in everything you do in your real world every day life and as much as we have intentions to do so, it so often doesn't happen.

Well interestingly, today I ran across a blog article that was just about the perfect 'answer' to my personal frustration of being overwhelmed. "Life as a Conscious Practice" . He talked about the first step is simply being aware of what you're doing, and consciously practicing the things we WANT to be practicing. In other words, why practice being angry at your spouse or a friend, when you can practice being compassionate and loving? The concept that life is a practice really struck me as such a parallel to my yoga practice - change doesn't happen overnight. I didn't one day wake up and decide to try wheel or headstand and boom, there it was (although for some people, they might be able to!). It took months of practice, of prep in other poses, of trying step by step - practice enabled me to then be able to do it one day. I'm going to try to look at the Agreements in the same way - practicing them in life, whether perfectly or not doesnt matter, it's the intention of moving in that direction that will transform my way of being. Why practice something else?

Monday, January 9, 2012

So much to learn!

Yoga has opened a whole new world for me, and there is so much to learn and explore. From the physical practice to taking it into my life on a daily basis, it's a constant practice. Today I went to Rasa Yoga in Novi for a class. Not because I'm not happy with my studio - I love Divine and all the teachers - but because I wanted to learn about other styles of yoga. Plus I had a Groupon to use! Rasa is an Anusara studio, which I found to be more spiritually influenced and focused on alignment than Baptiste yoga. My teacher was Marianne, a very friendly and knowledgeable older woman who clearly speaks from her heart. Class was just two of us, so she gave a lot of instruction for me about Anusara's themes and talked a lot about anatomy and alignment. She did hands on adjusting and had each of us watch one another do trikonasana (triangle) and see how she adjusted us to open our shoulder and heart, more of a lifting up and back like in a back bend, rather than just opening back by reaching your arm back and having your upper body follow. I already love this pose, but today it was truly awesome! felt amazing! I learned a lot about putting my thigh bones back into my hips and how it gave me more room in bending forward, more stability in poses. So much to think about. A friend told me Anusara would be a nice complement to Baptiste, that I could take what I learn and apply it to my practice and she was, of course, absolutely right. I have a couple more weeks left on my Groupon so hope to get in there a few more times.

Friday, January 6, 2012

Detox Day 4

Today is Day 4 of doing the Whole Living Magazine 2012 detox. So far the recipes have been great! All except for a couple green smoothies that were very heavy on the green, a kale salad today that just did not hold us from lunch til dinner - even with a delicious stuffed pistachio dates snack in the afternoon, both our tummies were rumbling by the time I got home at 6:30 tonight, so emergency clementines were in order if I were to make it through cooking dinner! Currently making beet soup that will be tomorrow's dinner, but not sure how we'll get by on the 1 serving=1cup portion (and nothing else). On the plus side, I feel great and have a good amount of energy, and just feel lighter. Which tells me that we definitely have been eating too large of portions for awhile now. Hopefully this will be the jumpstart I needed to get those last pounds off! Thad has also stuck to it (which makes me very happy!) and even suggested continuing it more longterm.

Avocado with Bell Pepper and Tomatoes

This was our Day 2 detox lunch and might be my favorite! Recipe from Whole Living Magazine.

Avocado with Bell Pepper and Tomatoes
serves 2


  • 2 tsp extra virgin olive oil
  • juice of 1 lime
  • 2 small cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 pinches cayenne pepper
  • coarse salt
  • 2 ripe avocados, halved, pits removed
  • 1 yellow bell pepper, stem and seed removed, diced
  • 12 cherry tomatoes, halved (or quartered depending on size)
  • 2 green onions, thinly sliced
  • 2 TB fresh cilantro, chopped


  1. In a small bowl, whisk together oil, lime juice, garlic, cayenne. Season with salt.
  2. Scoop out and dice avocado fruit. Transfer to a bowl and add bell pepper, tomatoes, green onions, and cilantro.
  3. Drizzle with dressing, season with salt. Gently stir to combine. Spoon into avocado shells.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Sweet Potato, Celery & Apple Salad

Today starts our first day doing the Whole Living 21 day detox. I have planned and shopped for the first week. Lunch today was delicious - but I was skeptical as I chopped and julienned a raw sweet potato. I will say this salad took me 45 minutes to chop everything for it, but as I ate, I was thankful for taking the time to do it! Recipe followed exactly, then added a sprinkle of Hemp Seeds on top before serving for some extra protein.

Sweet Potato, Celery & Apple Salad
serves 4


  • 2 TB lemon juice
  • 1 TB freshly grated ginger
  • 2 TB extra virgin olive oil
  • coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 small sweet potato, peeled and finely julienned (2 cups)
  • 1 tart apple (I used Granny Smith), cored and finely julienned
  • 1 stalk celery, thinly sliced
  • 2 green onions, thinly sliced
  • 3 radishes, finely julienned
  • 3 TB toasted sesame seeds
  • 1/4 cup packed fresh cilantro, chopped
  • 2 TB hemp seeds


  1. In a small bowl whisk lemon juice, ginger, olive oil. Season with salt and pepper.
  2. In a medium bowl, combine sweet potato, apple, celery, green onions, radishes, sesame seeds and cilantro.
  3. Drizzle dressing over salad and mix well. Divine onto 4 plates, sprinkle hemp seeds. Season with salt and pepper.

Monday, January 2, 2012

Basement yoga

We didn't want to be gone too long since it was Thad's mom's last night with us before heading back to CA. So, basement yoga it was tonight! Thad had practiced earlier today so this gave him some practice teaching experience too. I have a hard time not interrupting and giving him feedback and acting like a student. He says it was helpful but I don't want to be discouraging in any way! I'm excited for him!

I did have him help me with practicing kicking to handstand. Feels a long way off by I know that's why I need to keep at it - it will happen!

Sunday, January 1, 2012

New Year's Day Soup

I had never had Black eyed peas until today! I can't say they seemed to have much taste themselves, but they added a nice texture and of course great fiber and vitamins. After reading articles online about New Years food traditions of black eyed peas being good luck and greens meaning money, I thought it would be a good way to start the new year! This recipe is from Vegetarian Times, January 2009. Lots of flavor, we all enjoyed it and will have it for lunch tomorrow too.

New Year's Day Soup
Serves 8 (2 cups/serving)


  • 2 TB olive oil
  • 1 large leek, quartered, white and light green parts chopped (2 cups)
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 TB poultry seasoning
  • 1 large bunch kale, stems removed, torn into 2 inch pieces
  • 1 15oz can diced tomatoes
  • 1 15oz can diced tomatoes with green chiles
  • 3/4 cup dried black eyed peas
  • 1 quart low sodium vegetable broth
  • 3/4 cup small pasta (bowties, fusilli, etc)


  1. Heat oil in large pot over medium heat. Add leek and saute 5-7 minutes, or until soft. Add garlic and poultry seasoning, saute 1 minute. Stir in kale, cook 5-7 minutes, until leaves are wilted, tossing occasionally.
  2. Add diced tomatoes, diced tomatoes with chiles, black eyed peas, vegetable broth, and 7 cups water. Season with salt and pepper. Cover, reduced heat to medium-low, and simmer for 40-45 minutes. Stir in pasta, and cook 7-10 minutes more, until pasta is al dente and black eyed peas are tender. 
per serving: 161 calories, 6g protein, 4g fat, 27g carbs, 6g fiber, 5g sugar

New Years Eve Jarlsberg Dip

We loved this dip so much at a friend's party in November that we had to have the recipe! I knew it would be the perfect yummy dip to bring to a New Years Eve get together. And it is so easy too. This dip recipe is from the Holiday Market in Royal Oak, MI.

Jarlsberg Dip


  • 2 cups shredded Jarlsberg Lite Swiss Cheese
  • 2 cups chopped onion, yellow or sweet
  • 1 cup mayo


  1. Mix all ingredients in a medium bowl
  2. Place in a baking dish and bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes (I used 3 ramekins)
  3. Serve warm with your favorite cracker or baguette