Yawning, why not?

August 10, 2014

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I’ve been taught that yawning means I’m tired, or that my body or brain is looking for more oxygen, that it’s impolite to yawn in public. I know that there are times when I cannot stop yawning, mostly when I’m in a boring meeting and can’t pay attention. Just the other day I was at a stop light and the driver in the car stopped next to mine yawned- and sure enough as the light changed, I was yawning, too.

A friend sent me the essay on Yawning by Andrew Newburg, director of Penn’s Center for Spirituality and the Mind. It is from the book: HOW GOD CHANGES YOUR BRAIN. Newburg suggests that yawning can change our brain by regulating neural functions and that it is important to yawn, perhaps bringing yawning more into our daily consciousness- for example, to yawn before working or meditating.

It is a persuasive essay encouraging more yawning in our lives in order to enhance cognitive function and neurotransmitter production. Clearly, the simplicity of the mere yawn and the capability of any human to manifest a yawn makes this an inherent skill that anyone can bring more into awareness.

I am going to conscious bring yawning into my life- right now, 10 yawns- kind of delicious!

Read the Yawn essay.

 

 

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I am tired of struggling to take off eye make up- I hardly wear it, anyway, because I end of crying or rubbing my eyes- but still the removal is troubling- most make up removers have chemicals, and soap dries the fragile eye tissues. What to do?

Gotta love this simple use for coconut oil. Pour a small amount on a cotton pad and gently wipe eye make up away. If congealed, just scoop out a small amount and warm in your hand and apply to pad, then eye. Voila!

You don’t even have to watch the video, but here it is anyway-Coconut Oil Make Up Remover

 

Hat Tip: sixtyandme.com

 

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I recently spent a few day s in NYC with my niece, Sylvie. She is eating very simply- mostly vegetarian, candida-conscious, gluten-free. Big city- but how to find the right food? Here’s the app we needed. For NYC, LA and Austin. Free download. Why not?

 

Hat Tip: greatist.com

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Jeff Meshel consistently chooses powerful performers and songs for his blog. Many of his selections take my breath away. This one is at the top of my list. He writes: “But the discovery that’s been haunting me for days is this one, a spontaneous, honest homeboy and girl moment.  Aretha Franklin (b. 1942) Smokey (b. 1940) grew up in the same Detroit ‘hood, knew each other since forever. Here she’s the featured guest on a TV show called Soul Train, and Smokey’s a guest of the guest. Watch the banter, the comfort and immense mutual admiration. Watch the emcee challenge Aretha live on camera to come up with a Smokey song.”

Watch this!

Look how young they are. And Aretha is such an amazing pianist on top of her great voice. It’s a gem of a moment.

Mama’s Calendula Skin Food

February 14, 2012

Here is the recipe I created for “Mama’s Calendula Skin Food 2011”:

Wonderful for cuts, scrapes, chapped skin, lip balm, burns, cuticles, rough skin on heels and more.

¼ c Calendula infused grapeseed oil

.5 oz beeswax

1/8 t unfiltered honey

½ t cocoa butter

½ t sea buckthorn oil

20 drops peppermint, lavender or Thieves essential oil

Slowly melt beeswax in double boiler. (I used a pyrex measuring cup in a pan of water)

stir in honey, cocoa butter, and oils. Do not boil, just warm until melted.

When all liquid, turn off heat, add drops of essential oil and stir, pour into little containers and allow to cool.

 

This is a wonderful chart from 1bog.org (One block Off the Grid)

 

Really have you ever thought about how much land you would need to meet all your family’s calorie needs for a year. This is a great chart.

 

1bog.org is an inventive group that can help you find the most cost-effective way to have solar power. One Block Off the Grid makes it easier and more affordable for homeowners to go solar by organizing group discounts, vetting solar installers, and providing you with objective information and advice along the way. Our solar advisors don’t work on commission. Their salary is the same whether you end up going solar or not, so the information you receive from One Block Off the Grid is always 100 percent unbiased.

Hat Tip: William Spear

 

 

 

 

 

Tapping for Japan

March 15, 2011

How to hold our hearts open to peace, love and hope in the face of all the fear and difficulties of the world today? Here is a beautiful Tapping Prayer from the Tapping Solution. Scroll to mid-page for Jessica’s recording. Very calming and very empowering.

Jetlag? Not for long

March 13, 2011

I am determined not to be thrown by the long trip home from Australia. I couldn’t have gone farther away from home. Truly the other side of the earth. The trip there (going West) was painless. I was adjusted in a day or so. But this re-entry coming East to the US is a bit more challenging.

Jetlag is the out-of-whack circadian rhythm when your body doesn’t know which time zone it really is in.One might feel disoriented and fatigued. I am very glad that I didn’t schedule important meetings or obligations for the next week or so because “they” say a day per time zone crossed for recovery. My plan is to recover quickly and here is a list of helpful hints:

Always drink lots of water and avoid alcohol and caffeine when flying.

Try homoepathic  No Jet Lag

Melatonin – melatonin release is stimulated by darkness. Light suppresses the release. When we cross time zones and are suddenly exposed to excessive light when it’s normally our bedtime our cycles are disrupted and it takes time for our bodies to readjust.

Bio-Rhythm acupressure

Wear magnetic products like insoles, necklace and bring Nikken Far Infrared Travel Comforter.

The “Argonne diet” or the “anti-jet lag diet” (tested on a few hundred National Guard personnel with good results) alternates a feast day and fast day – protein breakfasts and lunches and carb dinners on feast days and soup and salad on fast days.

Pilot Paul’s Recommendations are great, especially for how to sleep on a plane (noise canceling headphones, eye mask, pillows, comfy clothes, avoiding alcohol. He also has good info on napping, exercise and sunlight:

“If you are going to nap, you will have the most success if you nap eitherless than 45 minutes or more than 2 hours.This has to do with the cycles of sleep. Basically, if you wake up during that 45 minute to 2 hour timeframe, you have been in a much deeper phase of sleep. Because of this, it will take you much longer to wake up. They call this “sleep inertia”. The bottom line- if you plan your naps you can gain the most benefit from them.

If you have a regular exercise routine, you’ll want to continue it now. It picks you up and helps you after all the sitting on the plane. For the most effectiveness in combating jet lag symptoms, the Mayo Clinic recommends exercising either in early morning or late afternoon.

Studies have shown that exposure to bright light helps shift the circadian rhythms (body clock), and therefore reduce the jet lag symptoms.Dr. Martin Moore-Ede, a professor at Harvard Medical School, recommends that you expose yourself to bright daylight as soon as possible upon arrival. This should be for at least 15 minutes and without sunglasses.”

Most important, plan for an adjustment period. Give yourself extra time at both ends of your trip just in case. And, definitely have a good book to read in the middle of the night if you can’t sleep.

Yummy Baked Root Vegetables

December 28, 2010

Here’s a yummy, fast and easy recipe for roasted root vegetables. The key is cutting uniform thickness so everything cooks at the same time.

Preheat oven to 350°.

Wash fingerling sweet potatoes, carrots, onions and parsnips by gently scrubbing with vegetable brush and water. The carrots, parsnips and onions came from my garden! Farmers Joanie and Mark from Wild Carrot Farm grew the sweet potatoes.

Cut into long, thin slices.

Line baking sheet with unbleached, chlorine free parchment baking paper. (Remember you can compost this paper!)

In separate bowl, toss vegetables with mixture of 2-3 tablespoons grapeseed oil, 1/2 t salt, any spices you love. Then spread on baking sheet. Put in oven for 15-25 minutes, turning and tossing occasionally.

Vegetables are done when easily pierced by a fork.

My friend Nance likes to shake some curry powder on her roasted vegetables.  Jane likes her spicy rub sprinkled on. Here’s my dinner plate with toast and smoked salmon, broccoli and collards,  roasted root vegetables, millet croquette, some grated daikon, arame and sauerkraut:

Feeling Crummy

December 10, 2010

Some of my friends are feeling crummy; sore throat or body aches, chills-  Well, it is cold/virus season, the weather is freeeeezing here in Connecticut, and it is easy to get run down. It’s a stressful time of year physically and emotionally and we need to take care of ourselves. When the sun sets so early, I just want to put on my pajamas and snuggle down with a book. It’s dark and cold and I wish I could just hybernate but I’ve had to do a lot of running around and now I’m feeling crummy, too. I really don’t want to get sick because then my good friend, Teresa won’t want to come over for tea.

So, I have boiled up one of my favorite and yummy natural home remedies.

Elderberry Tea

Loaded with antioxidant quercetin, elderberry has antihistamine and anti-inflammatory properties.

You can find elderberry in jams, teas and black elderberry syrup. It’s sweet and great for sick children (and grownups, too). Take 1 to 2 teaspoons four times a day for three to four days when feeling sick. Sipping elderberry tea can also soothe flu symptoms. From Oodora.com

Also, from healthandnutritiontips.com:

“The tea is made from the dried flowers of the plant. To brew tea you need about 5 grams (2/10 of an ounce) of dried flowers per cup of water. The flowers should be steeped in boiling water for at least 10, and preferably 15, minutes. Unless you don’t mind flower petals between your teeth, the liquid should be strained before consuming, or simply place the petals in a tea strainer. If you pick your own flowers, do so when they are in full bloom, and let them dry in the sun. They will store well in an airtight bag or other airtight container. Some elderberry tea drinkers like to mix it with peppermint tea. Otherwise you can add honey or lemon to taste.”

I like to boil the dried berries: 1/2 cup berries boiled with some ginger in 6 cups of water for 20 minutes. Sweeten to taste. YUM!

Next summer I will have my own Elderberries to pick. And, as my kids say: BOOM!