We live in a complicated world. It's always been complex, and always will be. Right now, many people are on some path of change or awakening. For some, they're on a path of survival just trying to pay the next month's rent.
If you are trying to improve your life, certain issues or causes, or maybe just be a better parent, know that you're doing your best. The imprint you make - for good or ill - will have a ripple effect. Change isn't immediate. It's a gradual process.
Regardless if growth or change is an individual or collective issue, just know that you are doing your best. And if you're not doing your best, don't beat yourself up, but put some more effort toward that thing or path.
Perfection exists in a fairy tale or a fantasy. It does not exist on planet earth (at least right now) so be gentle and know that you are doing your best.
As always, inspired by the sun,
Join Mind Body Soul Food Every Sunday for some inspiration, or Sunspiration, where we analyze quotes and sweet nothings in 150 words or less. Get inspired everyday with our Instagram account, sunspiration_everyday with inspirational quotes, motivational messages & sweet nothings.
Butternut squash and kale go together like peas and carrots. During this time when travel is a memory, I reminisced of my former travel memories around the globe.
In 2008 in college, I moved to Australia and had the opportunity to travel to Thailand and Hong Kong and experience some pretty amazing food. Those memories are forever with me, and realize during COVID 19 how much I miss traveling. Food is the gateway into one's culture, and food brings us together. Most people don't realize how important food is in our life experience.
Now living in Seattle, I still have the opportunity to eat lots of delicious Thai food.
The Midwest and East Coast excels in European food, and Seattle dominates the Asian food market with recipes that come directly from families. I decided to take an old classic Thai curry and modernize it with vitamin and nutrient-packed vegetables such as squash and kale.
And to add a twist, I tried it over udon noodles and enjoyed this much better than I do over rice. Since summer is almost here, the blossom orange wild flowers inspired me to ignite a meal with more orange colors, which means more Vitamin A in the diet.
As a plant-based health coach and trainer, I've seen many of my clients struggle when converting or maintaining a vegan diet. Many either eat all processed vegan foods, or struggle in eating one area of macronutrients. Normally carbohydrates are not the issue.
Regardless of the problem, it is important to balance carbs, fat and protein, which Thai food does wonderfully thanks to using coconut milk. Although vegetables are considered carbs, most people need some form of starch or grain to feel full.
Balance is the key to a great life, and a healthy diet. We should all aim to seek more balance in life and seek healing through the foods we eat. If you can do even just one change in your diet, eat more greens!
"Leafy greens such as romaine lettuce, kale, collards, Swiss chard, and spinach are the most nutrient-dense of all foods."
The sweet tooth ignited and decided to once again use the oven to bake ourselves some s'mores for dessert.
Being away from natural light led to an early sleep, which led to an early awakening where we woke up to the sounds of the birds singing in the spring and enjoying each other's company over a cozy cup of coffee in the tent.
âIf you're still stuck at home, I suggest trying a backyard or living room camping experience. For me, too much tech use is depressing and just releasing the body from the artificial light that comes from the screen was refreshing and restorative.
Below are both recipes if interested in experimenting with this idea! Hopefully as things continue to open up we'll be able to enjoy the parks and camping like usual. Enjoy!
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Hobo meal with field roast for the Covid living room camping where the oven was the fire â¡ #camping #campinglife #dog #nature #naturelovers #positivevibes #outdoors #outdoorlife #seattle #seattlelife #pnw #pacnw #covid19 #washingtonstate #outdoorlovers #vegan #healthyfood #dairyfree #veganrecipes #vegetables #food #foodporn
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Serves 2 large, 4 small
1 head of broccoli, chopped
6 red skin potatoes, chopped
2 cups brussel sporouts, halved
2 Field Roast sausage links (used apple sage)
2 carrots, chopped
1/4 cup fresh parsley
salt + pepper + Italian herbs + garlic salt to taste
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Wash and cut the produce and mix it in a large bowl. Add 2-3 tablespoons of olive oil and mix. Add the spices to your taste. Line a baking sheet with two large sheets of foil. Add half of the veggie mixture + 1 sausage link (slice if desired) in each foil. Top evenly with parsley, and fold, wrap and close the foil. Set in the oven to bake between 30-40 minutes, or until potatoes are edible and well cooked.
Remove from foil and eat warm! Add additional spices if necessary.
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Indoor Covid camping sâmores #camping #campinglife #dog #nature #naturelovers #positivevibes #outdoors #outdoorlife #seattle #seattlelife #pnw #pacnw #covid19 #washingtonstate #outdoorlovers #vegan #healthyfood #dairyfree #veganrecipes #vegetables #food #foodporn #smores
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Time: 10 minutes
1 bar of dark chocolate (vegan)
1/4 cup plant-based milk
1 box of graham crackers of your choice (vegan)
Vegan marshmallows (or regular if not vegan)
Preheat the oven to broil. In the microwave, melt the chocolate with the 1/4 cup of milk. I used almond milk, and mixed the chocolate and milk together every ten seconds until it liquified. Be sure not to bur the chocolate.
In a small 6-8 inch cast iron skillet, pour the chocolate evenly into the skillet. Next, set the marshmallows on top. Put the skillet in the oven on the top rack for anywhere between 10-40 seconds. Every oven is different and some ovens take longer. Remove once the marshmallows on slightly brown on top. This cooks fast! Let it cool for one minute and then dip the graham crackers into the smores, see image above!
âHow have you stayed creative during covid-19? I wish you the best in health and life and hope you and your loved ones are safe and happy.
In my opinion, life is about quality, not quantity. Although many people desire to live a long life. They should want a long, healthy life. A long life in pain and suffering is not enjoyable, and thats where wellness comes into play.
Most people have heard the same old wellness tips over and over again, but ironically Blue Zones is proof that a life surrounded by various realms of wellness works! The author talked about nine lessons in his book that included:
- Family – put ahead of other concerns
- Less smoking
- Semi-vegetarianism – the majority of food consumed is derived from plants
- Constant moderate physical activity – an inseparable part of life
- Social engagement – people of all ages are socially active and integrated into their communities
- Legumes – commonly consumed
It doesn't take much to adopt some of these qualities into your life. In fact, rearranging or preparing your "Blue Zone" space in your home is nothing new. It almost follows some aspects Feng Shui that promotes rearranging the home to have positive energy flow.
In my opinion, Blue Zones reiterate that the NATURAL ways of living trumps the ARTIFICIAL or engineered ways of eating, living and thinking.
Bring Nature into the Home or Build a Sanctuary
Some people prefer to build a sanctuary with plants or other aesthetically pleasing home decors like candles, end tables chocked full of old books or antiques. Whatever you find pleasing, bring it into your home. This helps reduce stress and enhances the down shifting atmosphere in your space.
This space can be used for creative pursuits, to reduce stress, to connect to God, do a yoga class, or just to read a good book. Whatever you find pleasurable bring a little peace, love and Om, to your home.
For those who live in a house and have access to a yard, now is the time to build a garden! Gardens are part of blue zone communities and raised bed gardens are perfect for city homes. Not only are you getting in touch with the earth, but you'll have healthy produce to eat too!
Reduce Tech Use
I am not sure how much positive benefit Alexa has done for us, but it is important to reduce your access or usage of technology. One way to "Blue Zone" your bedroom is by removing the television. Between staring at a phone screen and a tv, the artificial light hinders our circadian rhythm, which is our sleep-wake cycle.
It is possible for us to retrain our brains to sleep naturally versus having to take sleeping meds all the time. And that first step is to reduce artificial light filtering into our eyes before bed.
Cook More Plant-Based Meals
Need inspiration? Check out my dairy-free recipe archive.
Or try these immune-boosting recipes that use up your pantry items!
Find Your Tribe
In lockdown, it is difficult to meet people in real person., but luckily online groups and zoom meet ups are still happening. So, you can meet people while in the comfort of your home. It is not easy to pop onto a new group during this digital time, but why not take a leap of faith and try it?
If there is one thing we've learned about COVID 19 it is that we are social creatures who crave interactions.
It will certainly get you out of your comfort zone.
Inspire Your Mind
Maybe it's music you love, or reading quotes, or maybe listening to an inspirational talk on YouTube. Whatever it is, spend 2-3 minutes distressing your mind and body. For me, during tough times I began reading quotes to retrain my brain, and there are tons of quotes you can rummage on my Sunspiraiton page.
Whether you want to read quotes, or create a vision board, inspire yourself with optimal encouragement daily, or when you can.
Right now during COVID 19, being stuck inside still allows you to move with access to hundreds of free virtual fitness classes that are online. But, you can still move by cleaning (ahem, spring cleaning)NEAT or Non exercise thermogenesis activity. This includes anything like vacuuming, scrubbing, mowing the lawn etc. - really anything where you are upright and moving.
Sit less, move more. This doesn't mean lifting weights or doing 3 fitness classes per day. But NEAT allows us to organize our space while staying active outside of normal fitness routines.
Blue Zones are about bringing optimal wellbeing concepts into your home, and life.
The contrast of the colors, and the flowy-ness of the skirt reminded me of the season where it snows petals. I had to wait until 2020 to photograph these flowers, and during coronavirus I found a whole new world of inspiration to boost immunity and health.
As seen in the photo above, it is not a pretty picture. To reduce food waste, I decided to juice the parts of the pineapple that were usable.
The flown-ness and contrast of the skirt inspired me to create a juice that is helpful for gut and immunity during this time. It's as if we need to go with the flow, but be grounded and stable enough to appreciate our health so were not blowing in the wind like the petals once they leave the tree.
The vibrancy of the flowers for me represented the need to blossom, specifically in immunity. These vintage Vera napkins are available on Etsy account, The Elizabethan Closet.
The goal here is to incorporate color for our physical, spiritual and emotional wellbeing. The wheel of wellness like nature, is colorful and vibrant and we must use our emotional intelligence to figure out where life is working, or not. Stay healthy and safe my friends!
2 cups of chopped pineapple
1/2 fresh orange (left skin on)
1 sliced lemon
Run the pineapple and the orange into the juicing machine. Squeeze the lemon juice into the juice and mix. Enjoy immediately!
Let's Connect! Enjoy these other juice recipes!
Elizabeth Rae Kovar M.A. is Author of her memoir, Finding Om and is a Fitness Trainer, Yogi, Reiki Master, Presenter and Lover of Life. To view her portfolio please visit www.elizabethkovar.com
Follow her travels at: lemontreetravel.com