I saw a meme on Instagram this morning that inspired me, and felt very much in alignment with my journey this week.
Nine and a half months ago, I first experienced that sweet, gentle desire to take care of myself…leading me to make radical, and permanent, changes in my lifestyle. That truly was the beginning of a whole new way of eating and healing and being more in tune with my body and what it needed. I haven’t looked back.
This week that sweet, gentle desire to take care of myself, a practice I have come to cherish, has led me on a new adventure, a new level of self care and healing.
Inspired by a strong and supportive health community on Instagram, I decided to experience a juice cleanse…seven days of drinking my meals and snacks…as a way to take nutrients to a cellular level, nourishing my body deeply while giving my digestive system a break.
Today was my first day of juicing and my creative side enjoyed trying out new recipes. I had fun combining a variety of fresh fruits and vegetables, herbs, and spices such as ginger, and running them through my juicer.
I feel energized, centered and excited this evening, as this experience unfolds. And I feel very tender toward myself as I allow that sweet, gentle desire to guide me into this, another beginning. These beginnings usher in powerful changes for me. I anticipate that juicing will become a vital part of my continuing healing journey.
Please join me in this adventure, by visiting my health blog:
I was excited today to try out a new café that opened recently in downtown Joplin. Located at 122 S Main Street, Jasper’s Juicery features freshly prepared juices and smoothies and an assortment of delicious meals. I stopped in to sample a juice.
The cute café has a long counter for ordering and pulling up a stool. And there are tables and chairs in the front section of the restaurant with more seating available in a back room. I browsed the menu while a customer ahead of me placed her order.
I knew I wanted fresh juice, however looking over the menu I was impressed that Jasper’s Juicery uses locally provided ingredients, as much as possible, and that the smoothies are created with almond and coconut milk. I decided on the Turn the Beet Around juice blend, with beets, carrots, celery and apples.
I watched as my juice was prepared. The staff was friendly and helpful. The young woman taking my order expressed excitement about my selection, telling me it was her favorite juice. In moments my drink was ready.
I took a sip while still in the café and gave a thumbs up to the staff. The juice was delicious, with a slightly sweet taste, due to the apple. I like beets, so the flavor was mild to me. I took my drink with me to my mom’s, where family members were gathered before a birthday celebration. Everyone bravely tried a sip. Beets are not everyone’s favorite vegetable, to eat or drink, however the consensus was that this was very good!
I love that Joplin has restaurants and grocery stores that offer healthy meal choices. I’m looking forward to trying other juices, and all of the smoothies, at Jasper’s Juicery. Five stars for this great little health conscious café.
Sunday is typically my self care day, a time to focus inward while resting my body or engaging in artistic projects. However, I was physically weary today. The self care couldn’t wait until Sunday. Being a weekday, I had real estate work and writing to do. I couldn’t just spend the day in bed…or could I? To honor and restore my body, I declared today Soul Care Thursday, and made a creative executive decision about where work and writing would take place today.
I’m one of those people who makes the bed as soon as I get out of it. As I fluffed the pillows, I eyed the bed longingly. My mind, my body, my soul all whispered rest…rest.
One thing I have learned during my journey, is to listen to that still small voice. If the invitation was to rest, to be restored, to move gently through the day, I wanted to accept. I didn’t have to be away from the house until late afternoon. I said yes to the invitation.
I began with breakfast in bed. Listening again to what I needed most, I shifted from my typical morning smoothie to a bowl of chopped oranges, bananas, apples, celery and dates, with a sprinkle of cashews. This flavorful combo not only tasted delicious, it delivered energy boosting nutrients to my tired body. I experienced the benefits immediately.
Refreshed and inspired, I moved my office/studio into the bedroom as well. Using the freshly made bed as my resting space and desk, I surrounded myself with all that I needed to write, to journal, to create and to work.
With my iPhone providing internet access and the ability to make and receive calls, I had everything I needed within reach, including a cup of hot Scottish tea and a sweet companion who eventually curled up on my lap and slept.
It was a productive morning, and a relaxing one. In between handling real estate and writing a post for the health blog, I journaled and read and colored. I set up listing appointments and scheduled showings and read two chapters in Harry Potter and the Sorcerers Stone. I contemplated my heart and my journey, and snuggled Angel the cat.
The day was perfectly balanced between work and rest and creative play.
Restoration is the act of returning something to its original condition. My soul care Thursday was so restorative for my body that this unique blending of work and rest might become my new normal.
I think Angel would like more days like today too.
Check out some of these books and products that contribute to my Soul Care Thursday:
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Well, it happened. I avoided fall allergies. However, lately I’ve been around a bunch of people with a variety of winter illnesses, and this morning I woke up with the sniffles. I could feel the cold symptoms coming on, before I even crawled out of bed…headache, chills, stuffy nose, scratchy throat, and that tired feeling around the eyes.
This wouldn’t do! I’ve built up my immune system over the past few months, by eating healthy, nutrient rich foods. Waving the white flag and giving in to an illness didn’t appeal to me. I attacked the cold head on, with the following powerful strategies.
1. Listen to the body – My body wanted a hot water with lemon in it. It turns out this was an excellent choice. Lemons contain highly absorbable vitamin C. And the antioxidant flavonoids in this citrus fruit fight illnesses, including colds. Plus lemons are an effective mucus expeller. I sipped on a cup of hot water with the juice of half a freshly squeezed lemon.
2. Oranges, oranges & more oranges – Like lemons, this fruit is high in vitamin C, flavonoids and coenzyme glutathione, which together fight off viruses. After the lemon water and a glass of fresh celery juice, I created a new breakfast smoothie. I combined two bananas, two red oranges, a cup of pineapple and a tablespoon each of hemp and chia seeds. I’ve never added oranges to a smoothie before, thinking of them as more of a juicing fruit. This won’t be the last time I include oranges! The smoothie was light and refreshing and just what I needed.
3. Nettle tea -I’ve kept a pot of this herbal tea brewing today. Nettle strengthens the body with healing alkaloids and its anti inflammatory properties help relieve cold symptoms naturally. I brew three tablespoons of dried nettle leaf in six cups of boiling water and let it steep for 15 minutes. Or for a single cup, use 1 teaspoon of dried nettle. I drink it plain but it can be sweetened with organic honey, if desired.
4. Eat lightly, with a focus on fresh fruits – There may be some merit in starving a cold! Listening to my body again, I’ve eaten fresh fruits primarily today, accompanied by lots of liquids. Fruits are easily digested without taxing the digestive system and packed with powerful nutrients. I did have left over veggie pizza for lunch. Otherwise, it’s been a fruit day. Dinner was a bowl of fresh sliced pears, great for cleansing the body and purging toxins, and more red oranges.
5. Powerful supplements – These three supplements helped me to make it through fall without seasonal allergies. I’ve come to realize that supplements alone, while helpful, cannot overcome a poor diet. But eliminating inflammation causing foods, increasing fruits and vegetables, and adding supplements creates a powerful health routine that wards off illnesses and allergies. I feel like I might have let my defenses down because after I successfully made it through allergy season, I eased off my daily supplements. I have been diligent this week in taking them, and I won’t get lazy about this routine again. Especially helpful for fighting allergies and colds are Ester-C, a vitamin C complex, elderberry, for boosting the immune system, and raw honey. Locally produced raw honey is so important for supporting the immune system and fighting ear, nose and throat infections. I typically take a big spoonful once a day. Today, I’ve taken two.
6. Hot Apple Cider – I’m finishing up my day with a cup of freshly made hot apple cider. You can read about the health benefits of this incredibly delicious drink in a previous blog post HERE. Inhaling the spicy aroma makes me feel better, even before I take a sip. The cider contains spices that aid healing. I’m grateful for its healing properties. And for the way it warms and comforts me as I savor it.
Normally, when I have a cold coming on, I feel worse as the day progresses. Not today. By mid afternoon, my head had cleared, and the headache had disappeared. The sniffles were gone, as was pressure in my sinuses and ears. That tired feeling around my eyes lingers slightly, but overall, I fought that sneaky cold, and I’ve won the day’s battle. Life Changing Foods, by Anthony William, has been so helpful.
I didn’t think that my first act of making life a little more tender, in 2017, would be directed toward myself. My hope is that sharing my day of extreme self care, and yes…tenderness…will help someone else successfully, and naturally, fight a cold, and win. In that way, may this act of tenderness go far.
Order Ester-C and Elderberry supplements below:
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