Tuesday, 13 November 2018

Warm weather food

Yes! The warmer weather has arrived. And with it, a few changes in le regime (my diet, aka what I eat). I really get miserable eating salads and cold food in the colder months, but, surprisingly, am quite happy to eat warm soups in summer. Mainly because they can be light soups. And warmer weather also means lighter food for me.

                            Image result for muesli with LSA

Breakfast

I've been making an uncooked muesli for breakfast, and soaking it in any sort of milk (cow, almond, rice,etc) whilst I do a wee bit of yoga in the mornings. I use what I have:
  • ordinary rolled oats
  • oatbran
  • wheatgerrn
  • LSA (ground almonds, sunflower seeds and linseeds) you can buy it in a supermarket
  • I also add vegetarian protein powder
You can also use:
  • dried fruits (which are too sugary for me), so I don't use them
  • raw or toasted pumpkin seeds
  • chia seeds
  • any nuts that you like
  • coconut
I just make a mix, pop it into a container, and leave it in the fridge. Enough for about two weeks. And I only use two heaped dessertspoonfuls at a time, as it's so filling. I also add yoghurt, and fresh fruit.

I have a cooked muesli, too. Although I would actually call it granola. Granola is cooked, and muesli (used to be) uncooked. And I sometimes have this. It's so easy.
  • one and a half cups of rolled oats. I don't use the steel cut for this, I just use ordinary Scotch Oats 
  • I have also done one cup of oats and a half cup of wheatgerm instead, so I would just use whatever you please
  • three quarters of a cup of LSA. Again, you can use whatever you want here with nuts and seeds. 
  • one tablespoon of fat: ghee, coconut oil, oil
  • one tablespoon of sweetener: honey or maple syrup
Melt the honey and oil (coconut and maple is rather delicious) in your roasting dish at a lowish heat, about 150 - 175 degrees Centigrade. Then take it out, and add the other ingredients, mixing them well. This doesn't take too long to cook, but I keep taking it out, and stirring it so that it browns easily. Light golden brown is the best colour, if you let it go longer, it burns really quickly. You can add dried fruit after it's cooked.

Drink your greens

I also like green drinks. I crave greens. Every time I go past the fridge, I am grabbing whatever is green and uncooked, and having a munch. Lettuce, celery, asparagus. I was recently waiting for someone outside a cafe, and noticed the cafe herb box outside. Munch, munch. Then I got told off.......
  • water, coconut water, if you have okay blood sugar, you might handle some fruit juice
  • green leaves. I have also used frozen spinach, but whatever you have is fine
  • extras like cucumber, parsley. Whatever you have
  • you can add fruit too: banana, apple, half each or whole, berries. Whatever you have (this is sounding like a new mantra) 
  • you could add a bit of super greens powder like vegetable powder, or antioxidant powder which really is pink and red food powder
  • ice is optional but not for me, I don't like freezing food
You can make just a small amount, and whizz it in your blender or nutribullet. You can make a fair bit, cover it, and keep it in the fridge. 

Drink your fruit and/or greens at breakfast

You can also use something like almond milk instead of water, and add some vegetable protein, for a breakfast smoothie. To make it more substantial, you could add chia seeds, or LSA. You could emphasise the fruit, or the vegetables, or a bit a both. The permeation are truly endless.

                            Image result for Smoothie

Chickpeas, Indian street-style

When I was on a radio show on Saturday mornings, I would go to the food hall next to it, for lunch. All sorts of Asian food, cooked on the spot. And a lovely Indian lady would rustle up this dish for me. Keeping in mind that I'm allergic to tomatoes, there are none in this dish, but you could add them, and you could also add a touch of chilli powder.

  • cooked chickpeas (out of a can is fine)
  • yoghurt
  • tamarind chutney to taste. You can also add a bit of mint chutney. Or just use any chutney (use what you have)
  • my special dish always had chopped cucumber, and sometimes thinly sliced shallots. You could use red onion, and any other available vegetables
  • left over diced potato is nice as an option, too. Even sauteed first is nice.
  • my dish always had lots of chopped coriander, which I love. If you have parsley, chives, basil, mint, you could use these instead
  • some cumin powder, not much
  • some salt
  • if you want to be really creative you could sprinkle some roasted pumpkin seeds over the top before serving
  • my mix was: chickpeas, tamarind chutney - not much, salt, cucumber, coriander, cumin
  • mix and enjoy. Eat slowly and savour.
                 
                          Image result for chickpeas in yoghurt

Wednesday, 7 November 2018

the secret is...

What is The Secret?

No, no, not the Secret in the book entitled The Secret. Not one of my favourite books, by the way. It's just too greedy for me. And, in a round-about-way, I find the whole darned thing to be too blamey: "If only one had focused on drawing....... into their life, then ........ would have happened, and .......wouldn't have happened".


So easy. And to me, so silly. And, a few of the people in the book, those amazing people who had it all sorted, apparently. At the time of the book going to print, some of them came to grief. They did the opposite of whatever ethics something like The Secret should have imparted. And things did not work out.

Secret #1

I'm not saying that, therefore the "wisdom" imparted in that book, doesn't work. I am however, saying, why not use what we have, in life?

Why not learn how to be happy with what there is? When we are relying on what we want, in order to be happy, then we shall never be truly happy.

Sad fact.

Secret #2

And, it seems that this is all tied in with gratitude. For, when we are grateful, we mysteriously are happier.

There is another secret, #3

The secret of anything is in the Doing of "It". What is "It"? "It" is whatever we are doing, and seeing as I made rude comments about The Secret book and method, I shall look at it from this angle.

Suppose we want something to happen? And being me, I actually, really, want it all done yesterday. But the sane part of me knows that will never happen. That voice of reason inside of me, knows that I truly do need to do things, for Whatever to happen.

Seeing as I don't want:
  • a fancy car
  • big house by the ocean (but I would settle for renting a wee abode on the seashore)
  • to be rich and famous (but humble and kind!)
  • etc
I therefore shall look at what I do want. One of the things, is to be more slender. And it is happening. But, oh so slowly. (gggrrr) What am I going to do to change things?
  • can I visualise it happening and attract it to me? Visualisation definitely helps. Messages do get through to our pysche and our body, that this would be a good idea. And I have found it easier to do the things that I need to do, and "think" the way that I need to think, to get to my goal, by doing visualisation about the weight loss. So, yes, definitely this part of The Secret does work. But for me, not on it's own. And I have found that I need to be very disciplined, and keep remembering to do visualisation.
  • maybe a vision board? Sadly, for me, this hasn't really helped too much in the past. But again, that's just moi. It could be that I wasn't doing it right, for me. However, I love books! So I made vision folders, which have been helping me, but, meh, not much.
  • affirm to The Universe that I would like to be more slender, thank you very much. Right now. I love this, and it has helped me heaps. But I shall be honest. Very honest. I don't demand it. I don't even ask for it. I mean, does The Universe even have time to do this for me? In between creating new galaxies and such? Is my weight a Universe priority?
Instead I state that I do certain things, pertaining to weight loss. And this is what has been of the most benefit to me.

Because what works for me, is that perhaps, perchance, I really do need to actually do whatever is needed to lose that darned weight? Botheration!


The special secret gives us mana

I think that this is the real secret. We actually have to do something/s to achieve. Because a lot of things in life, are about the process of doing. That's the learning curve. That's where and how we get mana (personal power). From doing, and learning, and growing, or in my case I would prefer a type of shrinking, but you get the drift.

secret #4

                   Related image

secret #5

                     Image result for sufi quotes on the secrets of life

I also feel that we need to attach love to The Doing Of. It is such a strong force, and fills up a lot of space so that it's quite hard for the negative aspects towards our goals, our dreams, to take a hold and thereby make it hard for things to happen in a positive way.

Secret #6

For myself, I often feel that several secrets, working in tandem with each other, give a massive push towards It, the goal, the dream. After all no man is an island, nor, and this is just me, is one secret an island. 



Tuesday, 30 October 2018

Recovery and preparation

                             Image may contain: shoes
          (the altar for our recent three heart chakras workshop)

Recovery and preparation from and for what?

Life.

This weekend I was one of two teachers on a yoga seminar. It was "The Call of The Heart", and was about the three heart chakras. My friend, Linsey Smith, the other teacher, is very lovely, and we both combine our Maori Lore, each of us is learning a different aspect from the other, with yoga. So, it's very special for us doing these seminars. This is our second collaboration.

Linsey has an amazing yoga studio, quite some distance from where I live. Same city. Auckland is very sprawled out, so it can take a fair while, even on the motorways, to get places. For many years. I had previously taken weekend seminars, at least two a month, and day workshops, for most of the year. Plus been a teacher on at least one residential retreat, and taught quite a few classes each week. Very busy.

Next, I had several years where I just took about thirteen classes a week, travelling far and wide around Auckland, to do so. The travelling was the stressful part. And took a few small workshops each year. Plus did healing, and clairvoyant readings.

Then, I completely removed myself from public life. For many reasons. Stopped the workshops, stopped doing public classes, and just did a few privates, healing, and only a few readings. I was never, ever going back into public life again.

But, I have resumed public life. I've stepped back into taking a few workshops. I don't feel the need to do many; I've done that before. I also go to many weekend workshops to learn Maori Ancient Lore. Once a month, for over a year, I do a day's clairvoyant readings at a friend's Crystal and Healing fair.

And, I often forget, that the day after any of these, that I am exhausted. I need to go into recovery mode. I guess that it's my own form of Monday-itis.

How I recover
  • I do sleep in, the morning after, which is usually Monday. Because I need the extra sleep
  • I aim to have as few things as possible, which I "have" to do. This doesn't always happen, I must admit. Especially as I donate my time to a healing clinic on Monday evenings. Luckily, I usually get a healing myself.....
  • If I've been sitting for hours, I wake up with a sore back, and very, very, stiff. Not a pretty sight. So I do a few yoga flexibility movements with a special breath to wake up the mind and body. Takes, oh, maybe five minutes. And a few wall stretches, because, well, I am so stiff. I don't do "proper" yoga, because in these moments, my body is too sore.
  • I usually am "over" doing meditation on this day. I am meditated out, already. I feel as though I need the normal stresses of life, to balance me out.
  • I swing into careful mode with my diet. And drink more water. 
  • I don't talk much, as I find that it uses up my energy. 
  • But I do plaster on a smile. It does make me good.
  • I am incredibly grateful that I usually don't have do the cleaning up afterwards. 
  • I thank the Universe for allowing me to do these things that I do, and to feel enriched, and happy.

                    Image may contain: 14 people, people smiling, people standing

(second from left at our three hearts seminar. Yes, I am quite short)

Preparation

I am very organised with preparing for all of the above things that I might be doing: a day's clairvoyant readings; attending a Maori workshop (it's called a Wananga); taking a yoga workshop; travelling to teach yoga:



  • for the readings, I have my tarots just in case. I seldom use them, but I take them
  • for Wananga, I have workbook and pens ready the night before
  • for teaching, if there are any hand-outs, I prepare them first. Along with pens. I don't need to take much, and certainly no notes for myself, as I only teach what I do know
  • I check tyres, oil, water, petrol, the day before, especially if I need to travel
  • if I need to take food, I have it all ready to go, the night before
  • I go to bed early, and toss and turn all night, falling fast asleep in time for the alarm to go off. I just do this bizarre ritual, I don't know why
  • I get my clothes ready the night before, then go into a mild frenzy the next morning, pulling out all of my clothes, in a whirlwind of indecision and panic. Yet another bizarre ritual
  • I get up early enough to do some yoga, yoga breathing and meditation. And some Maori chants pertinent to whatever I'm going to be doing (they are called karakia). The yoga and chants give me energy and focus for the day
  • I have a light yet nourishing breakfast
  • and coffee. Of course. I do need coffee. It's part of The Ritual

Thursday, 25 October 2018

The Void

                  Related image

Tim Ferriss and The Void


I saw a comment by an interesting man, Tim Ferriss, who researches and writes about "things" to be and do: be healthier; exercise; diet; mind stuff and work only 4 hours a week.

He said that when we concentrate only on fixing the negative, we create a void. We should be focusing on the positive.

Tim is mega famous and rich, he is quoted by all of The Best People too, so I am assuming that he is correct. Actually, I really like what he says, and writes. Most of it is not Me, but I still appreciate and enjoy what he does.

So, what is he talking about? And how does it apply to us?  Do we even need it to apply to us?

Nature abhors a vacuum

For me, it always helps to simplify things, and not make things "special", but instead make them practical.  So, perhaps, we can look at this in a more practical and easier way:


A great fact of life, is that nature, in all of her forms and glory, does indeed abhor a vacuum. A vacuum being a void; an empty space. And something will come to fill that space, if we do not fill it in ourselves, for that it is how nature works.

People always say that something negative will always fill that space. But, will it? I have had many a time in my life, when things were not as they should have been, and I have not known what to do. I might have just waited to see what would happen, or ignored the situation, in the hope that it would get better.

And sometimes, things did indeed get better. But not always. When I didn't give the situation any "negative" energy, when I didn't fret, but just accepted the situation, and then withdrew my energy from it, things often just sorted themselves out. I should add, that in my heart, I always wish for the best outcome, and I do think that this helps.

our inner power

So, sometimes, I do feel that we need to let a situation run it's course. Sometimes it's just not up to us, to sort out other people's problems. When we keep doing this, we are taking away another's personal power: the inner power that they could have had by sorting out things for themselves.

how to make The Void

I noticed that whenever I kept focusing, in one way or another, on the negative, the problem, I left an empty space. A space which often was not mine to fill. 

I left that space free, empty. That space which was the void. I forgot that it was there. But, it was there. It was always waiting to be filled, with
  • hope
  • heart
  • faith
and sometimes, I just never saw it. So it didn't get filled with the correct things. These days, I consciously let it be. I try to remember that this void is there, on the side, waiting for the correct things to happen, just being. And that my best intentions will help it grow.

                   Related image

the space which should be there

Actually, I really filled up all of the available spaces, forgetting that there was this space that should have been, and I wonder if this was what Tim was referring to. I don't truly know, because I now can't find the article.

There was, at the start of the problem, a space. I see it as The Space, The Void, whereby I could have done something positive, about the situation.

Misuse of niceness

Now, I don't necessarily mean being nice and smiling happily, pretending that things are okay, whilst I tried to sort the problem out. No, I used to do that, and honestly, it always made the problems worse.

I found out the hard way in life, that nice isn't always the best option.

I wish it was. I really, totally, wish that it was. To be honest, that is still always my best option. Because it makes me feel better, the other person feel better, and it has more grace. More heart. More caring.

And I've always been mystified, and quietly angry, when people act and talk sweetly, whilst having poisonous intent. Being so nice. How could we not believe them? I just never know what to do, in these instances. And I really dislike myself for even being there.

negativity can be consuming

And, when a situation is negative, it fills up all of our space. Consumes our mind, controls our feelings, makes our heart heavy. And, sometimes it seems like a whirlwind of Other Bad Things also happening, to magnify the difficulty of it all.

All in all, the complete opposite of a beautiful void, waiting to be filled with good things. Instead, a big, sucking, negative, whirlwind. So overwhelming.

What can we do instead?

When nice isn't working, sometimes we have to not be mean, as such, but we need to be firm.  Resolute. It has taken me most of my life to stop being overly "nice".

But actually doing something about it; that's the key. Even if we just "let things be" and have faith and hope that things will work out. I don't think it matters if we are not "successful" in the way that we do something about a negative situation. Experience has taught me that:
  • caring
  • our intent
are what really matter. Even if we get it wrong, the damage to ourselves, and to others, is not as bad if we care, and our intent has honour and integrity.
Then we have the opposite of that void which we have filled up with stressing over our negative situation. 

We then have an empty space in which more positive things can happen; and grow. 

"It may not happen overnight, but it will happen" (to quote Rachel Hunter)







Wednesday, 17 October 2018

What I do with my life

This is not a fripperies post. It's about a passion, a lifestyle, of mine. 

I learn Maori healing, and ancient teachings, and have been doing this for about ten years.

What is a Maori?

The indigenous people of New Zealand, are Maori, and Polynesian. One of the most interesting facets of the Maori race, is that the ancient teachings of the culture have been preserved and handed down through time. There is also an healing modality.

What is Maori healing?

It consists mainly of 

  • Romiromi: this involves the pressure points of our body, plus deep tissue massage, and manipulations. It works not only on our body, but also on our health, our emotions and our energy. 
  • Mirimiri includes light massage, talking with the client. Both therapeutic in their own right.

12 day journey of spiritual learning and healing


The group which I belong to, Te Maurea, is holding a residential journey of Maoritanga. Maoritanga is  Maori culture, traditions, and way of life, in conjunction with Kawai Pura Pura. 

Some of the traditions on this journey, are indeed, little known. Such as
  • Maori martial arts 
  • Maori astronomy
  • Maori healing. On this journey, we are teaching the first two levels of our Healing courses. With expert training and guidance
  • Ancient Maori philosophy. Original teachings, going back through the mists of time.

And there is more
  • visiting ancient Maori sites
  • taking part in traditional ritual
  • some of the course is in the beautiful archipelago, our Bay of Islands.
The link to the information about the journey, is here
 
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Tuesday, 9 October 2018

Birthday month

                  Image result for vintage glamorous happy birthday flowers


I truly believe in The Ancient Art Of Making One's Birthday Last For Quite A While.

In fact, I encourage it.

And this year, which was a Big number, I celebrated with:

  • 3 cafe jaunts
  • 1 family and friends soiree
  • 3 dinners out
  • lots of presents, despite my "no presents" decree
  • a birthday massage with a top healer
  • 3 floral bouquets
  • 4 birthday cakes
  • a complete pile of new summer clothes from one of my daughters
  • sketchers slip on summer shoes from a grand-daughter
  • and a big hair appointment from my other daughter

A good and delicious time, overall. And, a good-looking one, too.

But, there is more happening in the way of celebrating. Lucky me. I am so going to celebrate my birthday again next year. In many years past, I have just skipped the whole birthday thing. But now, I am enjoying the fun of it all. 

Astrology hints

And I had a birthday gift of an astrology overall reading for the rest of my year, birthday to birthday, plus a more detailed six month reading. So, my astrologer, actually my eldest daughter, has always said that, astrologically - wise, however our birthday is on the actual day, does influence the rest of our year. 

And, I have found this to be so true. I have had many a blewh year, when my birthday was ho-hum. 

So, despite the two celebrations that I had on my actual birthday, it looks as though this year is more of the same as before but a bit more serious. And, it all bodes well for more of what I already do:

  • writing
  • teaching deep yoga, which will be seminars
  • more indepth study with Maori healing
  • clairvoyant work
  • lots of family time

So, this is over the next six months. Some problems, but, hey, that's life. I am quite excited, though, at this solar year (birthday to birthday)



Thursday, 4 October 2018

dance our worries away

                      Image result for dance

This week is inspired by a young dancer from Atamira dance company. A couple of weeks ago I did a healing on him.

So, on Monday evenings, I donate my time and energy to work in a Maori healing clinic, in Titirangi, West Auckland. I've been doing this for years, and I love it with a passion. Plus, I truly believe in giving back to society, without being rewarded for it. And this is where I do that. Give back.

Rewards of giving

Of course, I do "get things" from doing this. When we are unselfish, we "get" heaps. But, this is definitely not my motive. I'm just saying that, when you give, you get. 

During my life, I have also had to learn to discriminate when, where, what, and why, I donate "myself". Sometimes, it has truly been in the wrong situations. I've definitely learnt a few lessons, along the way.

The dance and energy of giving

I never thought about it before, as being a dance and energy of giving. But it is. Just as in dancing, we come together, on some level, we give of ourselves, we express a lot of energy on different levels. As we dance, we give to each other through our motives, body language, emotions. When the dance is finished, we separate, but we have received. From each other.

What the young dancer taught me


When I do healing, I can "see" a person's difficulties, whether they are physical, mental, or emotional. I don't get into it, but I am aware of it all. And that night I was doing physical deep tissue massage and alignment. So, not the place for the ole D & M (deep and meaningful).

What I could see, however, was that this highly talented young man literally danced through life. In a most expressive way. He danced his way, expressively, through his worries - his worries literally could not "touch" him. In his inner dance, he was immersed in the joy of expressive dance. 

I was so awed by this. I could see that he also did this with his emotions. There was literally no room for his cares, worries, any troubling emotions, to get even a look in. I was so inspired. 

Later, I saw him and his young dancer friend, dancing for a security dance, outside in the half-light. Joyousness personified.

How can we dance through life? 

I absolutely cannot stop thinking about this. Do I, for example, dance through life? 

And if I do, what am I doing?

For, I am not a dancer. I wish I was. I so wish I was. And I wish I was a surfer too, but this is a bit difficult when I can't actually swim.

But we all have moments, when something like the joy and expression of dancing is both within, and around us. For me, straight up, I can think of the following:

  • spiritual studies (I teach spiritual yoga, and go to Maori Wananga (learning the deep ancient lore of the Maori). I just love it. 
  • holding a baby anything - bird, animal, human (I'm actually not there yet with baby spiders... just saying)
  • being with any of my kids. I don't know why I call them that, 2 of them have adult children
  • being with my grandchildren
  • being in the beauty of nature
  • laughter between close friends
  • being with Pixie (papillion-pomeranian) because we love each other

Maybe that's The Secret Of The Dance? Love.

How can you dance through life? Through your cares and worries?

My youngest, when she was maybe eight, joined a jazz ballet dancing group, with other little girls. The joyousness of that time in her life, was incredible. Now, aged thirty, she still has a best friend from that dancing time. The skipping with joy to be there, the twirling around with happiness, the love and devotion towards their young teacher - ah, beautiful to see, and remember. 

Although a dancer may express The Dance, both physically, emotionally, and with inner joy, we might only be able to express outwardly, or only inwardly. What does it matter? As long as it's right for oneself.

Warm weather food

Yes! The warmer weather has arrived. And with it, a few changes in le regime (my diet, aka what I eat). I really get miserable eating salads...