Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Cherry Juice

I recently read in Preventative Magazine that tart cherry juice has had positive effects on sleep for those with insomnia. I don't have insomnia, but I could use better sleep. That alone was enough for me to buy a bottle of the stuff at the market today. I am not one to jump on the bandwagon of fad diets or gimmicks, but this one intrigued me. Its pure cherry juice and I love cherry pie and so why not pretend I am drinking a cherry pie - this is how I made sense of this whole thing. I drank approximately 10oz of juice about an hour ago (8:00pm) and I have to say I have been yawning and I do feel the onset of heavy eye lids. Am I just tired from the day or is this stuff really working? I think a combo of both.

The science behind the cherry juice is that cherries contains the hormone melatonin and the amino acid tryptophan. So two things that help get us nice and sleepy. I am wondering if cherry pie and turkey during Thanksgiving is the secret 1-2 knockout punch?

This article by the Huffington Post gives other reasons why cherry juice is beneficial...I especially like the paragraph about belly fat!

I am drinking the Organic Just Tart Cherry Juice by R.W Knudson and its really quite delicious. I hope to get really good sleep tonight so I can justify buying more of this yummy stuff.

Night 1 - I am not sure if I really felt anything from the juice. I feel like I was just exhausted, I slept hard, and didn't want to wake up. But that doesn't really mean anything. It could mean I was just flat out tired. On the other hand, Emma drank some of my cherry juice and normally she is in and out of her room at minimum 6 times before she actually goes to bed. She didn't have her special purple blanket that she sleeps with every night and I thought she would freak out, but....she slept. Only coming out of her room 1 time and slept with a backup blanky and shes still sleeping. I need to wake her up!

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Centering Myself.

I am not sure if its an age thing or a life thing, but in the past few months I have been on this journey of centering myself. I feel like I have been living a sort of one dimensional view of life. What I mean is, if I thought things were terrible at work or with friends, I just assumed life was rough in general. It was hard for me to see beyond the 'why' and I never knew that there were ways to help yourself through the struggles of life or just to be generally grateful.

Through talks with a therapist and with friends who dive deeply into spirituality, I have been able to open my eyes to a different way of life. A life that is not so fast paced and that allows me to receive every waking moment as an opportunity to live in that moment and not think about past experiences or plan for future events. I have learned what it really means to be present and I am so grateful for that.

This time in my life of new growth and awareness has been beneficial to my family also. There has been a trickle effect on the energy in my house and around my loved ones. My daughter, 3.5 years old, is at the height of her toddler years. She is most certainly assertive, expressive, and full of words to tell me when shes mad. I feel like before I had learned about centering myself, I would have been beyond frustrated and would have thrown tantrums just as she would. But the way I see it now is, shes also awakening to a new world. Shes learning that not everything goes her way and there are real boundaries that she has to learn to live by. She just doesn't quite realize these boundaries are all there to shape her and protect her.

The communication is easier to come by with my husband. We are both more willing to discuss and grow together. I had no idea that by taking care of myself, I'd end up inadvertently taking care of my family unit. A lot of the influence towards my centering is based on Buddhist philosophies and meditation. I learned recently that meditation affects more than just the brain, it has positive affects throughout the entire body. I mean, this makes total sense to me, because when I am stressed or down, my whole body is out of wack. I am either very tired or sick.

Speaking of illness, prior to this new phase of awareness, for 4 consecutive months in 2014 I would get a very bad sore throat followed by a 102-103 fever. On several occasions I went to urgent care and had to get a prednisone shot to take down the inflammation in my throat, because it was so swollen an painful. I haven't been sick since. I attribute the no illness to a significant decrease in stress. I recall one of the doctors who tested me for strep saying that I continue to test negative and that whatever I am going through in my life, I need to figure out how to lower my stress levels, because that is why I continued to get sick. I am a total believer that stress weakened my immune system so much that any additional stress to my body caused everything to freak out. I never want to be sick like that again!

Anyhow, thats where I am right now. Life is good and I am going to enjoy learning more about meditation and how I can continue to be centered.

Saturday, April 12, 2014

Good night!

The semester is more than halfway through. I'm exhausted and work has been asking a lot of me. Through all of this, I remain grateful. I may not always project that, but it is true. My family comes first and I know they're happy and healthy and that makes me feel sound. 

I am currently reading two books: The Road by Cormac McCarthy and Life of Pi by Yan Martel. Equally challenging philosophical books, but enjoyable reads. Hard to read them at the same time though, but that's what my current schedule calls for.

Outside of this heavy stuff, my young cousin from my husbands side has asked me to make her a blanket to see her off for college. I am more than honored to do so. In fact her request has sparked a drive that I haven't seen in awhile. I look forward to making something f that she will seek comfort in. I think my problem with having an etsy shop is, I don't find pleasure in making things for money. I find pleasure in making things that people  really want. Spending my own money for the pleasure of ones happiness is my happiness - if that makes any sense at all. To make something with no personal satisfaction seems empty to me. Maybe that's why I am a terrible business owner. I want more than what money could provide; I am ok with that!

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Sharon Olds

On Wednesday nights I attend a critical analysis English class. This class is everything I've wanted for the past couple of years. A class to challenge my writing, to force me to become a more articulated person, to use more effective verbs, so learn how to analyze writing. 

Lately we have been analyzing poetry. I never thought I'd find so much joy in an open forum setting of throwing interpretations around. It feels good to be around other like minded individuals who enjoy spending hours on a few lines. 

Tonight we read a poem called 'I Go Back to May 1937' by Sharon Olds. We literally spent 2 hours on this poem and I loved it. When I came home tonight I had to look her up and read another one of her poems. Thanks goodness for the dark, bc tears were welling up as I read this piece. I'll probably remember this poem forever. And in 14 years, I hope to read it again.

High School Senior (from The Wellspring)

For seventeen years, her breath in the house at night, puff, puff, like summer 
cumulus above her bed, 
and her scalp smelling of apricots
--this being who had formed within me, 
squatted like a bright tree-frog in the dark, like an eohippus she had come out of history slowly, through me, into the daylight, I had the daily sight of her, 
like food or air she was there, like a mother. 
I say "college," but I feel as if I cannot tell
the difference between her leaving for college and our parting forever--I try to see this house without her, without her pure depth of feeling, without her creek-brown hair, her daedal hands with their tapered  fingers, her pupils dark as the mourning cloak's wing, but I can't. Seventeen years ago, in this room, she moved inside me, I looked at the river, I could not imagine my life with her. I gazed across the street, and saw, in the icy winter sun, a column of steam rush up away from the earth. There are creatures whose children float away at birth, and those who throat-feed their young for weeks and never see them again. My daughter is free and she is in me--no, my love 
of her is in me, moving in my heart, 
changing chambers, like something poured from hand to hand, to be weighed and then reweighed.

Ugh - this poem kills me!!

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Less Puffy.

Since I am anti scale, I rely on pictures and generally how I feel. I have to say that 3 weeks into working out daily that I feel really good. The combination of moving my body, vitamins, and a lot of water is helping my overall well being. I like this path I am going down :)

I attended a seminar last night about detoxification and how it's beneficial to our bodies. I'm intrigued and would like to do one. I just need to research the cost and see if it's feasible. I can commit to a 3 day juice cleanse and that's it. I know my limitations, but if I can give my body the best nutrients without causing my body to use energy to break anything down, I'm game. I really like the idea of cleaning out my large intestine and this is a good way to do so. It sounds/looks so weird to type that out, but it's true...I would like to get those pipes cleaned! Lol

Tonight I did a side-by-side of my face. Little changes are changes and I'm happy that the hard work is gradually paying off. I can see my cheeks are not so full and even my eyes don't look as puffy. I'm curious to how my body will morph with more and more exercise. This is actually becoming fun. Omg - who am I...I would have never said working out was fun before all this haha.

Sunday, January 12, 2014

T25 and MELT

Tomorrow begins the 3rd week of T25. I feel like my mental routine is setting into place now. Each day I work out and even when I struggle with not wanting to - I push myself to put in the DVD and get to moving. 

In addition to T25, i am incorporating some MELT method (http://www.meltmethod.com) techniques, using a foam roller for my body and different sized balls for my feet. With all the intense cardio I am doing, stress from parenting, and stress from work and everyday life it is nice to use this method to relax my body. I appreciate that like my workouts, I can do this all on a very small space in my home. My MIL introduced me to this practice and I'm excited to see how my body responds to doing the MELT method on a daily basis.

2 week T25 BodyTransition 

MELT Method Tools

Goodbye Reagan!

Reagan Allen - ugh, I'm sorry. I'm sorry I didnt see how badly you were hurting. I wish things were different for you so that you didn't struggle with life. It's still very surreal that you are not here. I feel like I am in limbo with my emotions when I think of your passing. My eyes well up and I want to cry, but then there is an undeniable sense of peace that I feel for you. The tears are for your pain and my selfishness of wanting you back with your friends and family. But I respect your decision and I know it was made out of pure desperation. We will see each other again. And when we do, I expect to pick back up where we left off.

You were loved, you are loved, you will never be forgotten.