Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Eat Colorfully!

There are so many benefits to eating healthy, colorful, plant-based foods. From reducing your risk of cancer, heart disease and other chronic illnesses, to weight loss/management, to improving your skin, to having more energy and looking and feeling younger, happier and more balanced. 

I regularly eat a rainbow of colors at every meal, and I try to eat foods as close to the way nature made them. I feel better and have more fun preparing and eating delicious, healthy, colorful meals! The energy vibrations from colorful fruits and vegetables make cooking -- and eating -- more enjoyable.

When I have a rainbow of colorful, fresh, organic fruits and vegetables on hand, meals and snacks are actually pretty quick and easy to prepare, especially on Wednesdays when I eat raw (i.e. no cooking!). More on that in a future post. 

Have I convinced you yet? Here is a delicious and easy recipe to try from Recipes for Health Bliss, my favorite! I made this spinach and sweet potato salad for dinner last night and it was SO GOOD - even a huge hit with my carnivorous husband!

In closing, I wanted to share this quote from one of my favorite books, The Joy Factor.

"In order to bring sacred balance into our lives,
we must choose foods that not only
nourish all of the cells in our body,
but also feed our souls."
Here's to vibrant health, happiness and colorful living!

Friday, May 23, 2014

A Very Colorful Birthday!

Wow, Sofia is turning 7 on Monday and I'm finally posting about her very colorful 6th birthday party. Better late than never, right? My main reason for posting it is that I want to share our "recipe" for a colorful birthday party in case you ever decide to throw one. Hopefully this will save you time and give you some good ideas.
Sofia definitely got the party planning gene from me. She started "concepting" about 5 months before the party. One of the first things we did was start a Pinterest board to keep track of our ideas in one place.  
I ordered these adorable invitations on Etsy. They set the tone for the rest of the party planning. The girls were asked to wear their favorite color of the rainbow to the party.
We decked out our house in all colors of the rainbow.




As each girl arrived, they received a personalized bracelet.
Then they stepped into the "photo booth" for fun and tiny Polaroid photos, which they got to take home. We turned our mantel into a backdrop for the photo booth and we had props for the girls to pose with.

Color Wheel Art Project
I led a fun, colorful and educational art project. Each girl had their own canvas to paint a color wheel flower on. 

It was fun to see how different each piece turned out. True artists.

We had multi-colored aprons that the girls wore during the party and took home. 

Rainbow Piñata
Next the girls headed outside to bash the rainbow piñata - always a party favorite!

Color Wheel Cake and Food
This cake was really fun to make thanks to this helpful blog. It required a special pan and mixing colors but overall it was pretty easy.

More fun!
The party continued with a dance party and gifts!
Thank you!
The theme continued even after the party!
For even more color party ideas, check out our Pinterest board.
For her 7th birthday, Sofia had a Disco Bowling Party, which was a blast but a lot less work!!
Happy weekend friends.

Thursday, May 15, 2014

A Very Colorful Mother's Day

My Mother's Day was especially colorful and fun this year! It started with The Color Run, which bills themselves as "the happiest 5K on the planet." After participating for the first time, I completely agree. My dear friend Lara came up from Olympia to run with me. We had a complete blast and can't wait for more color explosions next year! Yep, that's a temporary HAPPY tattoo on my arm in the picture above. It hasn't worn off yet and it makes me (and others who notice it) smile every time I see it!

My day ended with color too! My mom, Sofia and I took a late afternoon walk through the rainbow of color on Azalea Way in the Arboretum near our house. Even though I visit the Arboretum often, I'm amazed every time I visit at the abundance of beauty and color, especially this time of year. I feel so fortunate to have it just a few blocks from my house.

What a great way to spend "my day!" Hope you're having a great week friends.



Saturday, May 10, 2014

Thank you, Mom!

Two of my biggest teachers in my life have been my mom and my daughter, Sofia. My mom has always told me "Being a mother is the greatest honor in life." It wasn't until I became a mom almost seven years ago that I understood what she meant. 
With an abundance of gratitude for my mom, I share some of her best teachings. She's never heavy-handed, always teaching by example and how she lives her life.
1. Love unconditionally.
2. Treat everyone with respect - from the parking garage attendant to the big boss.
3. See beauty in everything.
4. Love God and attend church regularly.
5. Exercise every day.
6. Eat nutritious food - unprocessed and plant-based as much as possible.
7. Give great gifts - and take great care in packaging them and tying beautiful bows.
8. Always have fresh flowers in your home.
9. Thinks positively - always.
10. Do not gossip.
11. Get involved in the community and give back.
12. Smile and say "hello" to strangers.
13. When possible, send a handwritten note, instead of an email or text.
14. Use medicine as little as possible - use natural remedies as often as possible.
15. Forgive.
16. Create rituals and traditions - even if your kids tease you. They will appreciate them as adults.
17. Invest in good skincare products.
18. Take your vitamins.
19. Go to the chiropractor at least once a month.
20. Sugar is evil.
21. Don't over-eat, over-drink, over-spend, over-work, over-think: everything in moderation. (Good Scandinavian!)
22. Drink champagne.
23. Buy the highest quality you can afford.
24. Accessories make the outfit.
25. Wear red lipstick.
What are the best life lessons you've learned from your mom? Why don't you take this opportunity to let her know, and thank her? And while you're at it, how about writing the 10 Things I Love About You to your mom and include it in her Mother's Day Card?
Happy Mother's Day!

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

A Love Note to Jamie Joseph

Dear Jamie,
We "met" several years ago when I stumbled upon your beautiful creations at Essenza in Fremont. It was love at first sight!

And so began my hunt for the perfect Jamie Joseph ring. I looked and looked - for years - and then I stumbled upon you again, unexpectedly, in Hood River last summer. My first stop when I arrived in town after driving from Seattle was at Doppio for a snack and a cup of tea. To my utter delight, I saw a postcard for your trunk show at Silverado on the counter.

Fortunately it coincided perfectly with my plans for the week and I hit the show with my friend Heather before leaving town. We oohed and awed and tried on many rings. There were several we loved but the matching ones we chose literally had our names on them.

We went to lunch to discuss the big decision and ultimately decided to put off our purchases. It wasn't great timing - Heather's husband (and my oldest friend from childhood) was battling stage 4 cancer and he was mid-treatment. We decided buying rings wasn't the most responsible thing to do at the time. We could always find the perfect Jamie Joseph rings later, right?!

Well the story doesn't end there. I left town and headed back to Seattle. I thought about "my ring" constantly and couldn't get it out of my mind. I was just about to call Heather to tell her we made a big mistake by passing up the rings, when she called at the exact time I was about to dial her and she told me she just put her ring on lay away. What, lay away? They still do that? Silverado does!

So I drove for another hour or so and then stopped to call Silverado to put my ring on lay away too. I was so worried someone else would buy it before I called. But they didn't - it was waiting for me.

For the next couple of weeks Heather and I were in contact several times about Scott's health - and our rings. We could not wait to pay them off. We decided on August - just a few weeks away.

We bought our matching green rings as symbols that Scott would be healed from cancer. We call them our "believe" rings. They have provided hope and beauty during some pretty dark days. I think you know that Scott lost his fight in January, but Heather and I still feel a huge connection through our rings. We LOVE, LOVE, LOVE them - and we love you! (We hope to meet you for real some day!) 

Here are a few pictures of us enjoying our rings.

Another symbol of hope and healing, glassybaby also helped us get through this past year. When Heather was visiting me in Seattle last year, we went to the glassybaby store and her ring looked so pretty with the glassybaby they had on display.

We went to Maui together as a family after Scott passed away - Heather's ring matched the glistening water, where Scott spent so much time surfing.

This picture was taken last August at Obliteride in Seattle, a bike ride fundraiser I work on to raise money for cancer research. Heather and I were absolutely giddy about our rings.

Finally, thank you for choosing us as the winners of the Silverado Hood River Jamie Joseph Facebook contest. We are excited for Heather's twin sister, Heidi, to join our club when she gets her Jamie Joseph ring with our prize from the contest.

And, thank you for bringing so much color, beauty and creativity to the world. You have touched so many people you've never even met.