Friday, June 29, 2012

Coffee again.... for External Use Only

Here in sunny southern California, I exercise outdoors everyday.  Walking, hiking and yoga in the sunshine.  My skin is tanner than it has been since I was a little girl, playing outside all day long in the summertime. But with the healthy-looking color comes the unfortunate side effect: dry, dry skin. There is no humidity in the air here, and as a result, I'm rubbing what seems like gallons of moisturizer onto my body to keep from shedding like a snake.

My dear friend, Dr. Margaret Henry, mentioned to me a remedy that she had heard about and tried. Coffee grounds mixed with olive oil, she said, would return my skin to baby softness. Intriguing. Since my husband makes coffee for himself every morning, I asked him to reserve the grounds for my experiment.

I took a wonton soup container full of coffeegrounds into the shower with me, sans oil. I just didn't want to have to slip and slide around the tub, or scrub that oil out when I was through. But I exfoliated my entire self with those coffee grounds, and when I was through, my skin felt miraculously soft! It had never felt better.

The shower, however,  had looked better. It looked as though I washed a muddy horse in there, but a quick spray with the hand-held showerhead cleared everything right up. Bonus: according to the internet, coffeegrounds down the drain help reduce odors and clogs.

Thanks to Margaret, my skin and my shower drain are in the best shape of their lives.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Summer Solstice simple slaw

Happy Summer! Even though most of the US had an unseasonably mild winter, the onset of summer is still a time for rejoicing. Celebration. Eating. Wearing tiny shorts and sundresses while eating. Eating outdoors in skimpy clothes. I want to look and feel good this summer. Rather than eating heavy, fattening, mayonnaise-drenched salads, I prefer my foods fresh and light.

Here's my low-fat, lickety-split summer slaw recipe that is loaded with nutrients. Eat it in your cutest sundress while relaxing in the warmth.


One head cabbage, shredded (or one bag shredded cabbage)
One cup shredded carrots
1/4 cup rice vinegar or raw apple cider vinegar
2 tsp raw agave nectar or maple syrup
sea salt, to taste
two tablespoons raisins, OPTIONAL

Combine all ingredients in large bowl. Mix thoroughly. Enjoy.

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

I'm Back, Stress-Free

Since I last posted here a long, long time ago, my life has changed drastically. Due to my husband being laid off from his job of 20 years, we had six months of complete uncertainty. He launched a six-month, nationwide job search while we emptied and prepared our 4-story, 100 year old home for sale. While he hunted for a new job, I began a one-year professional training course in Health Coaching at the Institute for Integrative Nutrition.

A giant, damaging hurricane and a freak October snowstorm added to the chaos. I had to say goodbye to the home in which I'd raised my four children, our close-knit neighborhood, dear homeschooling friends of many years, and my loving Italian/Portuguese family (who believe that grown children should live next door to their parents).

We relocated clear across country, 3,000 miles away from NJ to a tiny, temporary 2 bedroom corporate apartment in sunny California with two of my sons, my sister, and our cat Roxy. We luckily sold our house, in a down market, with the help of our wonderful realtor/friend and a relocation company. Soon after a long, arduous househunt, we moved into a more permanent house, adding my sister's two cats to the mix.

My sister found a great apartment for herself and her kitties after the new year. I graduated from IIN and received independent certification from AADP (American Association of Drugless Practitioners) as a Holistic Health Coach.

My daughter recently finished her third year of college, remaining on the east coast, and my 19 year old son returned to the fold, joining us in our LA suburb.

What is the point of all of this? To share that I'm back! And more importantly, unstressed! During all the tumult, the upheaval, the sad goodbyes, and the uncertainty about where we'd be living, I remained fairly calm. I enjoyed the process, accepting that change is the universe's default setting. Everything is constantly in motion, and once I learned to go with the flow, I felt remarkably at peace.

So now that I'm back, expect more posts about letting go of stress, being happy, and finding the fun in things.  I wish you all a stress-free, ever-changing life.