The Catholic Hippie

Catholic… Faith Applied Universally. Hippie… Living Opposed to Current Culture.

Food and family… where to draw the line April 10, 2012

Filed under: Faith/Spirituality,food/nutrition — catholichippie @ 4:31 PM

I just read this very timely post over at Kitchen Stewardship….

http://www.kitchenstewardship.com/2012/04/10/does-being-too-strict-on-food-take-the-joy-out-of-family-life/

This particular post is very pertinent to me right now.  We were still taking the ‘baby steps’ approach to traditional foods when my 7 year developed a cavity.  I was already familiar with the book “Cure Tooth Decay” and felt like this was the so-called catalyst that I needed to really take the full plunge.  So as mentioned in a previous post, we have completely eliminated all refined sugar (only using pure maple syrup, unheated raw honey, and powdered green stevia… very sparingly!), all white flour products, and are only consuming whole or freshly ground grains that have been properly soaked, sprouted, or soured.  We get raw milk, cheese, butter, eggs and meat from a local farmer.  The kids and I are also taking FCLO/BO blend, every day.

My husband is not entirely on board, honestly I think it exhausts him just to think about it, but he is usually thrilled with what is served, so all in all not to many complaints from him.  That and joining the farmers co-op is saving us a lot of money!  As our sole provider, that’s definitely important to him.

So, we, OK, I decided to skip the family Easter this year.  Having it at our house was not an option.  My seven-year old has been as educated as possible on all this and he knows not to eat ‘sugar or white flour’, and he knows why.   But I just felt like it would be really unfair to bring him somewhere with all kinds of candy, dessert, pasta, and white bread being served.  Most of my family still buys into the low-fat-dairy, no-red-meat frame of mind.  They sort of laugh at me and my ‘crazy ideas’, it’s not mean-spirited, but it’s also clear they don’t take me seriously.  People would be offended if they brought a candy gift and weren’t allowed to give it, even though they were previously asked not to.  I am always amazed at what people consider healthy alternatives… since when are twizzlers not candy?  At this point even my husband will say we need to make an exception.  Yes, I agree, sometimes you do. But when there is a visible cavity in my son’s tooth and we are not trying to prevent, but to heal and remineralize, I don’t think NOW is the time for exceptions.

My sister warned me on Saturday about making food my idol.  I’ve also had friends to tell me that I should be more concerned about my kids souls than their nutrition.  But don’t our buying choices affect so much more than just the food we eat?  Are we not to teach our children to be good stewards of the land and animals that God gave us?  Not to mention solidarity with all our global neighbors?  I can’t live my faith in a vacuum.  I try to teach my kids and myself, to live under the premise that everything we do either brings us closer to God, or further away.  There’s no neutral.  And often times that means making a personal sacrifice in the name of the greater good.  Something that we as Americans are not generally too good at.

 

I’m a Christian, unless you’re… April 7, 2012

Filed under: Faith/Spirituality — catholichippie @ 3:27 PM

Please read the following blog post…

http://www.danoah.com/2011/11/im-christian-unless-youre-gay.html

I came across this fabulous post thru a friend.  Wow.  I just don’t even know where to begin.  This writer has said everything that is in my heart.  I just don’t have such a graceful way of trying to present my thoughts without coming across as completely hypocritical to whatever it is I’m trying to say.  This really shouldn’t be such a revolutionary idea; love everyone, no matter what, period.  But it is certainly something I personally struggle with.  Although the writer spoke a lot about the ‘typical’ social outcasts such as gays, addicts, and homeless people, my struggle is usually with those judging the former, the ones practicing a faith-as-a-weapon type of theology.  That and the privileged, which in a global worldview, is pretty much myself and everyone I know.  Is this just a version of self-loathing?  Perhaps.  But it’s still one in the same.  Withholding love from someone for any reason is simply not justified!  I think we sometimes confuse love with approval.  The fear is that we’d somehow be sending the message that we agree with whatever choices someone is making.  But the message we’re really sending is that they don’t have any inherent dignity or worth as a human being, basically, we are saying they are worthless.  Another obstacle is the fear of association, pretty self-explanatory.  But again, this comes down to a perceived lack of worth, why else would we fear being associated with such a person?  I am trying to resist whipping out any bible verses.  This is a universal human message.  It is not limited or confined in any way to any faith or system of beliefs.  My hope is to try and show a little more love to those I perceive as unloveable.  Who knows… maybe it’ll catch on!

 

Our Nourishing Traditions

Filed under: food/nutrition — catholichippie @ 1:06 PM

After a VERY long journey from the truly sad standard american diet, thru low-fat-dairy & no-red-meat land, and a whirlwind tour of vegetarianism, we have finally arrived at what I believe to be the gold standard for optimal nutrition.  This is not a fad, this is not a quick fix, and it is most definitely not new.  So what is it?  Some people call it whole food, others real food, I personally prefer traditonal food.  Only it’s not just traditional food, but traditional preparation as well.  This type of eating/cooking can be found in every culture around the world that has not succumbed to modern processing and conveniences.  Granted, that’s pretty few and far between these days, but that has not always been the case.

The Weston A. Price Foundation is the go-to source for any and all information about traditional foods and modern day dangers.  About a year and a half ago, a fellow homeschooling mom introduced me to the book Nourishing Traditions, by Sally Fallon.  As I love to say (a la Johnny English) this book is SO much more than a cookbook!  Needless to say I have spent  a lot of time educating myself and my family, looking for local sources, and experimenting with new recipes/techniques.  The WAPF website has become invaluable to me.  Not only for information on the site, but also directing me to other books, DVDs, and blogs.  Check it out here.

This month a lot has finally fallen into place.  Our 100% grass-fed beef has been taken to the processor and will be in our freezer very soon.  All refined sugar has been eliminated from our diet.  No grains are being consumed without first being soaked, sprouted, or soured.  We began our weekly pick-up of farm fresh raw milk, eggs, butter and other local products.  And the most impressive event… all four of my children took their first dose of the most important whole food supplement there is; fermented cod liver oil.  It’s impressive because no one complained, retched, puked, or even so much as made a funny face!  Who says miracles don’t happen?

 

Who’s the expert? January 8, 2011

Filed under: homebirth — catholichippie @ 10:28 AM
Tags: , , , , ,

Got a call from my favorite midwife today.  She is the leader of the Home Birth Option of Cleveland, an informational group that meets monthly, to discuss… yep homebirth.  She asked me to speak at the next meeting, along with a few other women, about my varied birth experiences (hospital, birth center, and finally home).  This is very flattering to me… I can’t even express how much I look forward to these monthly gatherings with other like-minded women/couples!  But a stray comment got me thinking… she half joked that I’m ‘credible’ or at least viewed as such because I am a nurse.  And she’s right; many people have commented to me that it was OK that I chose homebirth simply because I’m a nurse.  Well let me tell you how much of my nursing experience came in to play during my hours of labor… zip, zero, nada.

Fast forward to another conversation with a friend/co-worker of mine who shares my passion about breastfeeding.  We know many women who sometimes encounter normal issues when getting started with breastfeeding, and who do they turn to?  Their pediatricians.  The usual response, to whatever the issue, ranges from a prescription being given, supplementing with formula, or even worse to stop nursing altogether.  Again, how much of their medical training prepares them to answer these questions?  Again, the answer is very little if any.  Are these women being referred to lactation consultants?  Or local La Leche League groups?  Very rarely.  Yet they all feel confident that they’re doing the right thing because ‘that’s what the doctor told me to do’.

The same applies to birth.  I feel so frustrated when any pregnant woman starts a sentence with something along the lines of ‘my doctor won’t let me…’.  Doctors are trained to treat pathology.  It may be a surprise to many people to learn that pregnancy is not a disease or state of illness.  Neither is getting over some of the bumps in the early stages of breastfeeding.  If you are a healthy person with no signs of cardiovascular illness, nobody suggests you should start seeking the advice of a cardiologist.  If your blood sugar is normal and you show no signs of diabetes, nobody wonders why you aren’t being treated by an endocrinologist.  WHY THEN do people assume that a healthy woman having a normal pregnancy should be under the care of someone trained to treat problems associated with pregnancy?

 

Not just no mammals July 24, 2010

Filed under: vegetarianism — catholichippie @ 6:40 AM
Tags: , , , , ,

It has been a long-standing family joke, although some have never found it funny, that I don’t eat mammals… mammals?  Yes, mammals!  And why, you may (or may not) be tempted to ask…  Truth be told I have never really been a fan of red meat.  I remember as a child (sorry mom) interminably chewing the most awful piece of some kind of meat.  Now, I have had my share of filet mignon and other good cuts, so I know it wasn’t just a kitchen mishap that turned me off.  Honestly, I just never got what the fuss was about.  So, several years ago, I decided that as a rule I would not eat red meat or serve it to my family.  My favorite saying was that I wasn’t going to eat any animal that fed its offspring the same way I do.  That and I had this sort of misguided philosophy that you could ‘bond’ with mammals (dogs, cats, cows, bunnies, etc)  as opposed to other living creatures like fowl (chicken) and any kind of seafood.  One holiday I phrased it something like; ‘well you could have a relationship with a mammal’.  This is how the joke was born; my brother and sister-in-law always teased me about ‘having relations’ with various kinds of animals (all mammals of course!).  Like I said, some people never really found it all that funny.  But year after year I could always count on at least one or two wise-cracks from them.

Four years ago my one and only daughter decided that she wanted to be vegetarian; vegan actually.  Her reasons had little to with the animals, she was not so concerned with any possible (missed) bonding experiences, and more about the environmental impact.  She was only going on 10 at the time, and so her basic concern over the wasting of natural resources was good enough for me to support her in this decision.  So like any budding homeschooling mom, I had her look up all the vitamins/nutrients she could possibly be missing and list their alternative sources.  Of course I did my own homework on this as well.  Instinctively, I was more for just the basic veg diet rather than strict vegan.  I knew that vitamin B12 was essential and that it was not found in any non-animal sources.  She agreed to eat salmon once or twice a month to appease me.  I thought it was fun trying new recipes; we had an egg free cake at her birthday and stuffed squash for Thanksgiving.  After deciding she just couldn’t live without eating eggs, she quit the vegan thing after about six months, but stuck to veg for a solid year.  Ever since she tries to at least avoid meat as much as possible.  Looking back, it’s probably my fault it didn’t last longer.  The novelty in the kitchen started to wear off and basically I got lazy.

I have always been fascinated with food and nutrition and have enjoyed reading on the subject.  I have gone thru a series of ‘jags’ where I swore off one thing or another; artificial everything, preservatives, dairy, gluten… you name it I’ve avoided it.  For a while I was making all my own bread and bread products from scratch… bagels anyone?  I never did successfully make a homemade hamburger bun.  Over the last couple years I have become more aware of both the horrors of factory farms and the healing powers of certain foods.  As usual, I dove in head first; only organic produce, no sugar, no salt, nothing at all processed, only free roaming chickens and grass-fed beef… wait a minute; I don’t even like beef!  At this rate I knew that I was once again going to fail because of my ‘all or nothing’ approach.  It was time to realistically prioritize how I was going to modify and incorporate some healthy changes in my family’s diet.  Thankfully, some of my previous endeavors had some lasting effects; we’d been off cow milk for quite some time and quite gloriously everyone was happy with rice milk (did I mention I went thru a phase of making it myself?), all natural peanut butter and raw honey had become staples, as well as an array of other healthier alternatives.

I did my research and double checked the statistics.  One thing that stood out was that commercially prepared meat (red, white, or otherwise) has more than 10 times the amount of pesticides as non organic produce.  Wow.  That mixed with the overwhelming desire to no longer monetarily support the factory farming industry finally pushed me over the edge.  Now, why not just buy organically raised meat?  Good question.  Mainly; we can’t afford it.  It’s cheaper to eat vegetarian.  Besides, I’m skeptical about the ‘all-natural’ labels on these meats that you find at the grocery stores, and we’re not yet ready to commit to any CSA shares or co-ops.  BUT, that’s not the only reason.  My social conscience tells me that I am a child of God and citizen of planet earth first.  This solidarity with the rest of humankind no longer allows me to eat what has historically always been a kind of delicacy, a treat of sorts.  Not just what’s for dinner.

Just to be clear; I am not saying that it is wrong to kill animals for food.  I am saying it is wrong to treat animals unethically and make them suffer.  I am not saying there are no health benefits to eating meat and animal products.  I am saying that mainstream processing which includes pasteurization and homogenization destroy most of these benefits.  I am not saying that not eating meat will solve world hunger or end global warming.  I am saying that these complex consequences require complex solutions.  I am simply one woman, one mother, trying to learn to take baby steps toward a healthier future and perhaps instill a little justice along the way.

 

Birthstory June 23, 2010

Why this story?

Birth stories are engraved in a woman’s memory like our name…  in fact, I’d bet that even if I forgot my identity I’d still remember my birth stories.  This is the story of the birth of my fourth child and first homebirth.  I am purposely not telling the stories of the first three.  Not that they are too painful or difficult to recall, not that there were any horrific turn of events, it was quite the contrary.  In fact, they were beautiful experiences, I learned much from them, and I have no regrets.  So why the withholding?  This was not the shortest or easiest and not the least painful of my births, BUT it is the only birth which I approached from the perspective of trust rather than fear.  The only birth in which I was truly empowered.

Why homebirth?

I have always liked the idea of homebirth and admired those who chose that option.  Because of my ignorance of the facts, I believed that it was at some level more risky than a hospital or birth center.  Living in Ohio, hospitals are the only option, other than home.  During this pregnancy I had been reading a lot about Ina May Gaskin and the statistics of the births at The Farm.  My husband and I were astounded by their overwhelming success and low C-section rates, including twin and breech births.  Around the same time we watched the documentary The Business of Being Born.  It was time to get down to the business of researching the real facts!  I had found a Certified Nurse Midwife that seemed to share my feelings on having no interventions during labor and delivery.  Although I knew, from past experiences, that I would still have to “fight” with hospital staff and that my midwife had no say so over the baby once it was born.  This troubled me quite a bit, as I have a history of being late, having my water break a day or so before labor, and having somewhat larger babies.  I started doing my homework and looking for a homebirth midwife.  It didn’t take much to confirm what I already instinctively knew; God created my body to give birth naturally, and while there may be rare instances which require medical intervention, if you listen to your body it will tell you.  My husband and I attended our first Homebirth Option of Cleveland meeting the January before my April due date.  For me, that meeting was like coming home.  Seriously, I wanted to hug every person sitting there and thank them.  Finally!  A group of like-minded women who knew and honored the normalcy of birth.  My husband, ever the devil’s advocate, (God love him!) still did not fully appreciate all the aspects of why having a homebirth mattered so much to me.  But as a scientist, he did appreciate the facts, and was convinced that the lack of interventions at a homebirth definitely contributed to an ultimately safer environment.  We made our decision and met with the midwife at our home.  I continued to see the CNM for prenatal check-ups and told her of my new plans to deliver at home.  Thankfully, she was supportive and even familiar with my midwife and confirmed my confidence in her.  The only doubts I had were regarding my mother.  My mother and I have a remarkable relationship.  I have always been able to talk to her about everything, and usually do on a daily basis!  I really did not count on her response.  My mother is the ultimate worrier, and when it comes to me and my family she takes it to a new level.  When I told her my plans for a homebirth, she asked me not to tell my dad and said she did not want to talk about it with me anymore because it was too upsetting.  WHAT?  Don’t talk to my mom about the most important thing happening to me… this was unprecedented and it shook me up something fierce!  To make matters worse, everyone else in the family had that same sort of “well as long as you have a healthy baby in the end” type of attitude.  Was I being selfish making others worry?  Then there was the subject of finances.  A hospital birth would be covered with a $50 co-pay, homebirth was out of pocket.  Money was tight and I thought maybe financial prudence should prevail after all.  I called my mom and told her to rest easy; I’d be delivering at the hospital.  Thankfully, this story is not over!  My husband knew that I was not happy and told me that I was not selfish and that I deserved to give birth where and how I wanted.  Hindsight never fails.  All these things were meant to happen.  I decided not to tell my mom we had changed our minds yet again until pretty much labor… why have her worry unnecessarily?  I didn’t purposely deceive her and she really didn’t want to know anyway.  But, the most important thing that happened, was knowing that my husband truly supported this decision, 110%.  I love the stories of women laboring surrounded by lots other women, however, this was not my vision.  My husband is the furthest thing from squeamish and I knew he was all the support I needed.  Besides my midwife and her apprentice, the only other person I wanted there was my daughter.  She was 12 when I delivered and had attended every single prenatal appointment, attended all the HBO meetings (in fact we both still go, more than a year later!), and watched more than her share of birth documentaries.  More importantly, this was to be her first experience of birth and I wanted to give her the gift of seeing it as God had intended.  It saddens me immensely to hear so many strong women talk about how they would “die” from natural childbirth.  My own sister first gave me this gift when I was only 8, allowing me to be present at the unmedicated birth of my niece.  I have never forgotten that.

Fast forward to 39 weeks. 

I was at the CNMs office, measuring larger than my dates, of course.  She had been mentioning at previous visits some concern over the size of my baby… “did you feel this big with the other pregnancies?”  Uh, does anyone ever feel small???  Not sure how to respond, I blew it off, after all, I’d had a nine pounder with no issues.  This time she shocked me and said that she would be documenting an offer for an induction and that I had refused.  I left that office as fast as I could.  This was crazy… an induction at 39 weeks?  For absolutely no clinical reason what-so-ever… from the CNM who had promised me a hands-off delivery?  I thanked God that this was not my only recourse.  My last pregnancy went to 42 weeks, I could only imagine the ensuing hassle had I not been planning a homebirth.  I decided to cancel my next appointment, what was the point?  This was all happening the week before Easter.  My last baby was born on Easter Sunday, so of course we talked about the possibility of another Easter baby.  Although this seemed highly unlikely, given that my due date was two days after Easter and my history of being late.  Even so, I kept having the feeling I would not be pregnant for another 2 weeks.  All during Mass on Holy Thursday I was having contractions, but they went away by late night.  This continued to happen for the next two nights.  We hosted Easter at our house and by 5 PM as my parents were the last to leave, my mom commented that there wasn’t going to be another Easter baby.  “It could still happen”, I said.  My daughter jokingly said that she hoped not, cuz she was pretty tired and not ready for 24 hrs of labor.  Yeah, real funny.  Well, she got her wish. I did not have my usual round of evening contractions and everyone went to bed early.

The next day.

I woke up around 4:30 AM having contractions.  It was not unusual for me to have some false hope in the evenings, but I knew waking up to contractions in the morning was definitely the real deal.  My stronger than usual contractions were accompanied by lots of bloody show.  I spent this time in the bathroom practicing deep knee bends and praying.  I had been learning about the concept of redemptive suffering, and offering up my pain to Jesus.  I was determined not to feel overwhelmed or discouraged.  An hour or so later, I woke up my husband telling him we were having a baby. Without opening his eyes he told me he knew.  Ahem… excuse me sweetheart, I mean today!  After I made myself clear he got up and got himself together.  A little while later my daughter and teen-aged son woke up, my son high-tailing it downstairs.  Needless to say he was not anxious to take part in this glorious event.  I was unsure what we would do with my 4 year old son; I wasn’t opposed to him staying, but also didn’t want my husband or daughter to miss anything caring for him.  Luckily, his best friend is the son of one of my best friends, so back-up was in place.  He woke up crabby and needy and it took me about 30 seconds to say “Make the call!”.  My usual labor progress is slow and insidious, always lasting greater than 24 hrs.  More than once, I have showed up at the hospital convinced that I’m nearing transition, only to be told that I’m maybe 2 cm.  It was unbelievably nice not to have that concern this time around.  My contractions were feeling pretty strong and I started to worry a little that I would not have the stamina for another day of this.  I had my husband call our midwife and ask her to come over.  I really wanted to know where I was at, so I could mentally and spiritually prepare.  She got there around 9 or so and checked me… I was 6 cm!  Woo Hoo!  Those endorphins were pumpin’ now baby!  I felt like doing a cartwheel!  I had never dilated so fast and instantly did the mental math (another hour or so until transition… ninety minutes tops after that… let’s see… a few pushes, we should have a baby by noon!).  I should have known better than to be so overconfident.  The contractions themselves were quite manageable, I hardly remember it even getting more intense at transition.  I alternated standing at the sink and squatting, walking around the upstairs hallway, kneeling on my bed supported by pillows, and getting in and out of the shower.  Around 11 I was sitting on the toilet and my water broke, it was slightly greenish, a sign of old meconium, but nothing to be concerned about.  At this point I was 9 1/2 cm, just a lip of my cervix left.  “Just a lip”, sounds sooo innocent.  The exact time and order of events is a bit fuzzy after this.  A little time passed and my midwife suggested I try pushing.  I was definitely feeling ready, and pushing had always been a breeze for me in the past, so I gave it a shot.  Yeah, right… nothin’.  Now when I say I felt ready I mean ready in the sense to be done, to have this baby, I did not mean that I was feeling an urge to push.  I tried a few different pushing positions and made no progress.  She checked me again and that stubborn lip was still there.  My contractions at this point were actually slowing down and getting further apart.  I was feeling frustrated and tired.  Everybody talks about managing the pain, for me it was the exhaustion.  Again, hindsight.  My body knew I needed to rest and my wise and experienced midwife recognized the signs.  She turned off my bedroom lights, suggested I try to rest, and left me  and my husband alone.  Believe it or not I was able to sleep between the contractions that came about every 1-2 minutes.  I breathed thru them and kept my eyes closed and my body supported by pillows.  A couple of hours passed like this, around 3 they got stronger and I was feeling rejuvenated.  Again, I stood up to push, again I had zero urge, and again no progress was made.  That damn, God-forsaken lip held its ground.  Although generally not recommended, I started pushing on my back with my legs supported.  This position can be helpful when dealing with a lingering lip.  My midwife hypothesized that because all my previous births had been “directed” that perhaps this is why I felt no urge, I had simply been told when to push in the past.  For the next hour I pushed like I had never pushed before.  Why was this so hard this time?  Did I have the strength?  I had to consciously drive these thoughts out of my mind.  I turned my mind to prayer.  I recalled a CD that talked about Christ’s suffering on the cross, how every breath was excruciating, and I knew that my eternal life was born of that suffering.  It was my turn to birth life from suffering, but I was not alone.  This was not excruciating but it was hard, and I was not alone.  Over and over and over I asked Jesus to push with me.  Little by little progress was made… another hour passed.  I could see the confidence in my husband’s eyes as he persevered in cheering me on, the love I saw there was overwhelming.  Finally, I was able to reach down and feel the head emerging.  Although grunting and “vocalizing” on the outside, I continued my silent mantra for Jesus to push with me.  Every inch of baby had to be forcibly pushed out; I never wanted to know the meaning of a “slow chest”.  With the strength of Christ and the prayers of all the angels and saints interceding for me, Tristan Michael was born at 5:18 PM.  He weighed in at a whopping 10 pounds even!

Some thoughts.

This was definitely one of the greatest events of my life; physically, mentally, emotionally, spiritually… It redefined “holistic” in my mind.  It also was the greatest bonding experience between my husband and I.  I could write several more blogs about each of these aspects, and perhaps I will.

 

New Year’s Resolutions June 14, 2010

Filed under: Uncategorized — catholichippie @ 7:50 PM
Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

Don’t ya love a clean slate?

A new day, a new week, a new month, a new year… <sigh> I just love the thought of a fresh start.

I know, I know…  it’s not January. 

This new year is marked by my recent 35th birthday. 

There’s something about this birthday…

Is it the “advanced maternal age” stigma attached to pregnancy at this age? 

Is it the fact that this is the age my mother was when she had me? 

Is it the fact that I am sadly catching up to my big sis who graduated from life 4 years ago, just a few months shy of her 40th birthday? 

Most likely a little bit of all of this.  But mostly, I’ve decided, it means that I have to really start being an adult (yikes!).  A little absurd, I don’t mind admitting, considering the fact that I am married, have 4 kids, and work part-time as a nurse.  Maybe it has something to do with being the baby of the family (by a stretch of 7 years) and always yearning to “catch-up”.  For years, I honestly thought I’d never grow up!

Well, here I am…

And it sure is true… the grass is ALWAYS greener… <sigh>

All that being said, I usually start my “fresh starts” with lofty goals and aspirations of perfection that are quite laughable and quite impossible… and this time is no different. 

Well, maybe it is…

Don’t get me wrong, I still have my lofty goals, only this time I don’t delude myself that I will achieve these goals immediately.  Patience is one of those adult-type emotions that has always seemed just slightly out of reach, especially with myself.  But you gotta start somewhere.  So the first resolution of my 35th year of life is to allow myself enough time to really become the woman God created me to be, and to forgive myself for not getting there overnight.

So here goes…

2) Talk less, pray incessantly, and attend Mass as frequently as possible

3) Become a better Wife and Mom

4) Become a better person (daughter, sister, friend, random stranger, etc.)

5) Eat vegetarian, preferably vegan (with some exceptions… more on that later)

6) Achieve a healthy weight and exercise regularly (yoga!yoga!)

7) Begin actively pursuing a vocation in holistic healing (as opposed to the western medical model to which I am currently an indentured servant)

8)Commit to regular volunteer work/community service

9) Participate in social/political activism

10) Start a blog!

I know what you’re thinking… “what? no world peace???”

One day at a time… and as a wise woman once said…

“When one day at a time is to much; break it down to 15 minute increments”

 

 
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