Gavin got “Student of the Month” for joyfulness this month. We are so proud of how happy he is. You can hear him humming when he is really into what he is doing and you can feel the contentment. This feels like a win for me. I pray that he can always go to that place of joyfulness.
It’s Christmas Eve. The tree is trimmed, the presents are wrapped, the food is almost ready. I, however, am not ready. I haven’t had as much time I as would like to prepare myself. The most quite time I get is in my car, on the way to work. The local radio station has been playing only Christmas songs all month so I have heard my favourite “Oh, Holy Night” many times. But, suddenly, one day, I really heard it. Till he appeared, and a soul felt its worth. He appeared, and I know that I am worthy. It’s not because I bought all the right gifts, or made the perfect meal, or decorated like Martha, it’s just because. I was loved by him unconditionally since before I was born. Loved by the great I am, just because I am. That is Christmas. That is what I wish for everyone out there. That they know that they are worthy of love just for being who they are. He appeared, and your soul can know its worth.
May the joy of knowing that you are fully and deeply loved fill you to the brim the Christmas.
This is Amber with my son at an outdoor restaurant in Florida.
We had just had a great day at the beach and we were ready for some food. Gavin had fallen asleep in the back seat, so my husband dropped me off to get us a table. As I sat waiting at the table, a couple came in and sat at the table behind me. At irregular intervals one of them was making the snorting sound that some people make when they are laughing hard. After the 5th time I realised that this wasn’t laughter and I thought, “this isn’t funny”, and “how am I going to eat?”. As I was struggling with what to do, Amber put up her hand and said, “By the way, I have Turret’s, just so you know”. I was ashamed of myself and so relieved that she said something. Now, because I understood, I felt love and compassion for this woman and new that I would be able to enjoy my meal and the sunset.
When Gavin and Lawrence sat down, I let Lawrence know right away. The waiter came over and saw that Gavin was cold so he went to find him a sweater. He regretfully came back without a sweater. As he took our order he felt compelled to tell us that Amber was an awesome person and had recently had brain surgery. Not 5 minutes later, there was Amber with her hoodie and her friends leather jacket to loan to Gavin so he wouldn’t be cold. We were happy to accept the hoodie on loan and were humbled by her generosity. Lawrence had the waiter send them a round of drinks.
Before the drinks arrived, Amber told Gavin that she wanted him to keep the hoodie and promise to pay it forward and to remember not to judge people by your first impression. She told him about her Turret’s and how her surgery had removed 40% of her challenges. With tears in my eyes I told her that we would never forget her and would always keep her in our prayers. She reminded me to look at everyone and every situation from a place of love and understanding. That’s when we can be our best selves.
If you are reading this, please say a prayer for this beautiful soul who reminded us to keep an open mind and to pay it forward with a grateful heart.
Life is so busy that it can often feel like you never get to connect to the people that mean the most to you. You see each other, pass each other, say good morning and good night, and yet you feel lonely and disconnected. My husband and I discovered long ago that we didn’t want to have a relationship through our cell phones. What worked at that time, before we had our son, was a commitment to come home by 7:00pm on Monday nights and have dinner together. No television on, and no answering the phone and no booking meetings or other commitments on Monday nights. It didn’t take long before everyone knew not to bother calling or asking if we were free Mondays because we weren’t. It was amazing how much it calmed us down. We knew that come Monday we would be able to reconnect and talk about our wins and loses and everything in between. Now we have lunch on Fridays and if we get lucky we have a late breakfast together after our son is off to school and before we get into the business of the day. It’s so important to the health of our relationship, our family and our own hearts and minds.
How do you make sure you stay connected?
I got very lucky yesterday and found dandelion greens at the grocery store. My Nonna cooked these all the time in my memory and she picked them out of her garden and front lawn. This was long before people were concerned with spraying their front lawns to kill them all. At least in her neighborhood.
I like to cook with olive oil on low to medium heat. Coconut oil is probably healthier for cooking but sometimes you just pick what you like. I used a pearl red onion and some fresh chopped garlic and cooked them just long enough for the flavors to come out. Then I sauted some cauliflower rice (cauliflower pulsed in the blender until it looks like rice). I added some Bragg’s amino acids for extra flavor and when it was cooked (still a bit crunchy) I added bean sprouts and the washed, stemmed and chopped dandelion greens. I put the cover on and turned off the heat so that everything got just a little wilted. On the plate I added the pine nuts and a dash of sea salt. To make it look pretty and as a little treat, beside it is buffalo mozzarella with yellow tomatoes, a basil leaf and some balsamic vinegar. Next you see the sinful salcciccia. I am sure there is some wheat gluten in there but it’s only four slices and I LOVE salty meat. Please avoid it if you are having health challenges and don’t make it a staple in your diet. It is a treat!
If you are looking for some easy things to use in your kitchen to upgrade its health status these are three easy ones and people always comment on them when they are in my home watching me cook or sitting down at my dinning room table.
1) Braggs Amino Acid is a healthy substitute for regular soy sauce. I use it in stir fries, salad dressings, on rice, you name it. It tastes just like soy sauce but is better for you because it is fermented.
2) Organic Coconut Oil. You can google this to satisfy yourself that it is healthy. It is one of the safest oils to cook with. You can blend it into your coffee. It looks like a latte if you use your blender. You can put it in smoothies, hot cereal and you can even brush your teeth with it. Check out this link to learn more.
3) We have been using sea salt for years. It’s full of minerals that many of us don’t get as we try to avoid the advertised evils of table salt. We need minerals. Drinking reverse osmosis and purified water out of bottles has deprived us of many mineral as well. Since switching to spring water and adding sea salt in my kitchen I have had fewer problems with dehydration.
Please remember that my blog is to give you easy ideas to make your life a little bit healthier, one small step at a time. These tips do not replace medical advice. Please consult with me by commenting here or emailing me from my website http://www.loewenchiropracticclinic.com or consult with your local health practitioner.
Easy, healthy substitutes
In trying to avoid gluten, I was looking for an alternative to pizza. I have found quite a few that I will share as I try them. These are portobello mushrooms. One has pizza sauce, gluten-free pepperoni, and mozzarella cheese. The second one has sliced tomato, fresh basil and provolone cheese. The third one has BBQ sauce, shredded chicken and monteray jack cheese. I cooked them at 350 for 15 minutes but they could have good longer if I wanted the mushroom to be softer and hotter. They were very tasty and filling. I couldn’t finish all three. Enjoy! Let me know if you come up some fun combinations.
In the interest of getting a wider variety of vegetables into our diet I took a chance and bought some brussel sprouts. Then I searched for recipes and adapted one to fit the ingredients I had in the fridge. It was the highlight of the meal and I could have eaten just that and been very satisfied. So hear it is.
Roasted Brussel Sprouts
3 cups of Brussel sprouts, cleaned and halved
1/4 red onion chopped
2 green onions chopped
1/4 cup pine nuts
black pepper and sea salt to taste
cayenne pepper to taste (just a dash or two)
2 tbsp of lemon infused olive oil
3 tablespoons of vegetable stock
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. In a bowl, combine all the ingredients.
Roast Brussel sprout mixture on a sheet pan for 12 to 15 minutes, shaking pan about halfway through to ensure even cooking. Serve hot.
Pass it on.