Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Spin Cycle: Food, Whole and Raw and Healthy

Well, Jen asked us to spin about food this week, and although I do love to cook and my family enjoys my cooking, I am not one to follow a recipe and that makes posting a recipe difficult.

Plus, I cannot compare with my blogger friends like Michele or Jan (Jan is even writing a cookbook).

My sister is a talented photographer and cook and after guest posting a recipe or two on Weyume, they asked her to be the Saturday and Sunday recipe blogger. Check her out!

So, I am going to do something a little different with this post and do a little advertising. I took down my blogher ads awhile ago and I have stayed away from marketers asking me to do reviews or provide a link.

But today’s post is advertising something I do (and eat) for ME.


This is what a bag looks like.... this large bag lasts one month.

My story goes like this: a friend passed a bag of Mila to me last December. Mila is a whole, raw food. It is made from the chia seed, and is the absolute highest quality, proprietary blend of chia seeds. My friend had in mind my son, who had recently been diagnosed with depression and was going through a very difficult time. She thought it might help him as she knew several people who felt strongly that Mila helped them with depression and other mood disorders.

Breakfast: nonfat plain Greek yogurt with honey and a coop of Mila

Mila is ground up and appears a lot like ground up flax seed. It is odorless and tasteless and can be put into just about anything.

My husband and I began eating a scoop a day right away. The teen boy is a fussy eater and it was more difficult to get the Mila regularly into his diet; however, my husband and I felt the difference within two weeks.

My story. I was four years past chemo, but had never been regular since. Without sounding like an old lady who is obsessed with her bowel movements, suffice it to say that when one does not poop for days at a time, it becomes a focus. Along with irregularity also came fatigue and more migraines than ever before.

Days after incorporating Mila into my diet I was as regular as a clock. Soon I also noticed an increase in energy. I dropped weight (I had gained weight with the irregularity years). I am now down to not only my pre-chemo weight, but down to my pre-forties weight. I went from 158 pounds to 138 pounds in the last six months.

See, the Mila looks like this...

After two months of eating Mila daily, my migraines and accompanying neck pain started decreasing in frequency. My Imitrex prescription now lasts three times as long.

My cholesterol was borderline high and I would go in for blood tests every six months. My last blood test, my cholesterol had fallen into the normal range.

My husband’s Mila story. He stopped with the energy drinks since he began eating Mila; instead of a Red Bull or Monster, he drinks a scoop of Mila mixed with juice or water before he goes to work.

I mix the Mila, honey and yogurt together before I add my toppings.

This summer I have been home and able to prepare my son’s food. I sprinkle the Mila into his hash browns and rice and anything else I prepare. Instead of a scoop at a time (unless I make him a protein shake), I sprinkle his scoop in various foods throughout the day. I combine it in meatballs, stews, curries, just about everything. I believe the Mila combined with surfing daily has been making a huge difference in my son’s health.

A few months ago I decided to become a distributor. At first, I just wanted to be able to buy the Mila at a distributor’s discount. However, I like the business model of the Lifemax Company and have been working the business end this summer. My cost was in the amount of bags of Mila I purchased to share with others. I pass a bag on to those who I ask and who show interest. If they like the product, they can buy more from my website. If they want to join me and become a distributor, that’s great too. I get to work with friends and people I like.

My favorite toppings for breakfast are granola and blueberries.

The worst thing that can happen is I turned on someone for free to a whole raw food for a month. That’s not a bad thing at all. Like planting seeds of goodness both literally and metaphorically.

So, Mila is the biggest food change in my life at this juncture. I’m loving it.

If you would like nutritional information, click here.

If you would like to read testimonials, click here.

To see my website, click here.

If you are interested in trying some Mila, let me know in the comment thread and make sure your email is linked and not “no reply”

For more food spins, head on over to Sprite’s Keeper (Jen puts the links up on Friday).

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

TTT: Traveling While Cruising

I've actually taken a load of photos for Traveling Thursdays this summer.


The effort of going through them, selecting, etc.

Has got me skipping posting on Thursdays the last two weeks.

I do have a tip though.

While cruising in a beach chair on a lazy day, make sure you recline and do some cloud watching like you did when you were a kid. It's very relaxing.

And you might just see a flying horse if you're lucky.

Got a tip for how to feel like you are on vacation even when you stay home? An actual trip? Any and all posts in the general genre of living life like a beach are welcome.

Monday, July 11, 2011

Spin Cycle: Puppies and Unicorns and Sunrises, Oh MY

The Spin Cycle this week is, literally, "puppies and unicorns." Jen helped us out by this explanation, "What makes you smile? What brings up your spirits?"

Here's the puppy (who turned four this year) who makes me happy and brings up my spirits. He is the sweetest, happiest, most fun companion. His job is not just my spirits, but the entire family's. And he is good at his job. He's had a lot of practice at it these last 18 months, and is sometimes responsible for keeping us grounded through the unbloggable.

click on any photo to see it enlarged...
For a little extra boost, the Border Collie and I take hikes with views. You folks have seen this one before.

I'm sharing my favorite rest stop with you. Half-way up (OK, actually about every 20 stairs or so), I stop and rest. My favorite cactus and the sunrise.

There are extra visual treats, like watching these giant birds descend from the hill and fly up and out to the ocean for their day. If you look close behind the cloud, you can see the moon.

When we get to the top, this is our view. Imagine doing your morning sunrise yoga to this. On a clear day, you can see Molokai and Maui on the horizon.

There's my puppy again, sniffing the wind while I sit down to take some deep breaths. I put on my I-shuffle and listen to this while I set my mind on the horizon...........

For more spins, head on over to Jen at Sprite's Keeper.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Spin Cycle: A Story of Forgiveness

I was not raised in a home that modeled forgiveness. Grudge holding, name calling, and judgment were more the norm. Before my parents divorced, during the years leading up to their divorce, many nights were a litany of wrongs and recriminations.

In such an atmosphere, one might be inclined to blame others when something goes to the shit can.

Or to deny, to feign ignorance, to rationalize rightness for a wrong doing.

Because when they weren’t all over each other’s ass, my parents need to criticize, to judge, to condemn, could be focused elsewhere.

And, why admit to fucking up when it only meant a tirade of verbal malevolence? Not just at that time, but ammunition that would be brought up over and over again. Not just when you made a similar mistake, but also, sometimes, just for family fun – which in our home often meant teasing gone wild.

So, no, I did not learn the way of forgiveness from my family.

But this story is not of my own learning the value of forgiveness…

To understand the degree of my parents’ hostility and unforgiveness of each other, let me mention the following.

For years and years after their divorce, I avoided any and all trigger words which I had learned would lead to either of them going off on a tangent about the other. I knew by heart every story of every misdeed and had also learned (sometimes the hard way) what I might say that would trigger one of these stories.

When I married it was a small wedding in Tahoe and my sisters asked me which of our parents I was planning on inviting. This was 14 years after their divorce and the last time they had seen each other had been in court….

Did I mention that they took each other to court, back and forth and forth and back, until they reached the California Supreme Court about one detail they would not compromise on….and that through this process, every dime and every bit of equity they had acquired in their 22 years together was gobbled up in attorney fees….

So. When my sisters asked me this question I said, “I’m inviting them both.”

Gasp. Shock. Horror. Disbelief.

“Oh. My. God.”

“They’ll make a scene.”

“They’ll ruin your wedding.”

“Mom won’t come if Dad is there.”

“Dad won’t come if Mom is there….”

“Well, then. They can both fuck off. It’s my wedding and if they cannot be civil, if they cannot realize it is about me and my soon to be hubs and not them, if either of them has a problem with that, then they shouldn’t come at all.”

They both came.

The never said a word to each other, but they came and did not make a scene.

Over the years, they became more OK with each other.

This still did not stop them from making the occasional verbal jab, of reverting to the old war wounds even decades later.

My dad died in 2003.

In 2007 I went to a psychic reading with a group of women friends. It was a circle of eight and I was quiet and observant. The psychic had her eyes closed and went about her business, giving messages to the women in a random order. I was last and figured since I wasn’t saying anything I might not be noticed. I was fearful and wished I hadn't come. I was one year away from cancer and not sure if I wanted to know what lay ahead.

“You, the quiet one, I want you to know you are going to be fine. You have a relative here, and she says she is with you and loves you.”

“My grandmother?”

“She calls herself BeKing…???”

“Bahquine?” What my sisters and I called our paternal grandmother…

“She’s smiling. Yes. Bahquine. Do you have any questions for her?”

“How’s my dad doing up there? Has she seen him?”

Psychic frowning.

“Your Bahquine says not to worry. Your dad is…. In Between. When he died, he had a lot of anger, fear, and unforgiveness, it made it difficult for him. But your loved ones are surrounding him and will continue to until he lets go of his anger and is ready to move on."

That really tripped me out big time.

Last year I went to another psychic reading, a different one, a friend of a friend. I went with a friend. This time I did have a question. It was about moving. Or not moving.

But the psychic was of little help on that one and gave it a shrug.


“Someone is here. It’s your dad and he has a message for you.”

“Uh…” Do I have to?

“He says he’s trying to help you and your sisters by helping your mom. He is trying to reach her in her dreams and tell her he’s sorry, to ask her forgiveness and let her know that if she lets go of her anger (at the time my mom was being quite a handful as we moved her towards assisted living) she will be fine.”

At the time, all I could think was, “Good luck with that Dad. Mom sees you coming in her dreams, she will high tail it out of there faster than a rabbit glimpsing a wolf.”

Seeing as how we had uber shit going on with my mom at the time, I never mentioned the psychic’s message to her.

July 4th, 2011. I am talking to my mom (this is huge, she wasn’t talking to any of us for months). But now, she pretends last year never happened. She is happy in her assisted living home. She tells me she has great friends, she sits at the fun table (translation: popular)at meals, goes to movie night every night, and loves just sitting in her apartment and reading by the hour.

I’m happy for her.

I accidentally say something that triggers her into a rant about my evil father and his wayward ways.

I become brave and say to her that I try and stay away from negativity these days, that I forgave my father any and all wrong doings many years ago, and perhaps maybe she should too.

I tell her I would rather talk about something else.

Then she says the strangest thing.

She tells me she has had dreams about my father often the last year. That it “scares the shit out of her.”

She tells me he is reaching out his hand to her, but she never takes hold and turns away instead.

She asks me if I think if she forgives him, will the dreams stop…

I tell her maybe she should take his hand in the dream and see what happens.

For more forgiveness spins, head on over to Jen at Sprite's Keeper.