Thursday, April 05, 2012

Thursday Love List: Spread the love

This week, a departure from the type of Thursday Love List where I tell you about things I'm into that I want you to check out. This week, it's about making your own in-the-moment lists and sharing them out loud.

I'm gonna share a little personal secret to start us off. When I was a kid, I was not the most awesome at making friends at school. I blame it on the then-undiagnosed ADD. I was impulsive, and inclined to speak my mind with very little foresight in the how-it-might-be-received-by-others department. Ever the sensitive and experimental parent, my mum, for about a month in my seventh grade year, had a deal going with me. Everyday I was to work on offering others compliments and encouragement. Each night, my mum would pay me 10 cents per nice thing said I'd said that day, up to $1. Ten nicer things out of my mouth offered to my peers each day, in exchange for a buck, which in 1992 was something I could get into. Of course the compliment had to be sincere in order to be received well from my fellow students, so the exercise helped me focus on listening more and being cheerful, and maybe even nourished my friendships with others. Who couldn't do with more of that in their lives?

In the past few weeks, I have been noticing that complaints are bursting forth from my mouth at an increased rate than usual. I think it comes from feeling tired and overworked these days, but when you're feeling down you need friends more than ever, so it serves to reason that I should pull up my socks and feed the relationships around me. (It may also be linked to some liver cleansing I'm doing, and the fact that anger is the emotion associated with that body organ, according to good old Chinese medicine.) I am deliberately trying to offer up niceness - be it with my housemates, friends, yoga mates, or the clerk at the health food store. It might be asking a friend how they are, and then truly tuning in to listen and responding with your observations of their related strengths. Or walking into the change-room and complimenting a fellow yogini on her headstand instead of moaning about what a challenge the class was today. In short, I'm talking about ways I imagine we can share love with others and offer some to ourselves.

If you're looking to share a little love, shake a funk of your own, or be a bit more mindful, perhaps you'd like to take a shot at it, too. After all, studies have shown that the more you practice being happy, the easier it'll come to you. How quick can you earn your daily dollar?

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Monday, April 02, 2012

Monday starts a month of more deliberate health-seeking

Someone sent me an email a while ago, asking me to blog about health everyday for the month of April. I honestly cannot remember who it was (although a quick search of my inbox might tell me), and I didn't write them back for fear of not being able to come through, but it got me thinking that maybe it'd be good to push myself into a writing routine. I have most of this month off from school, after all, so maybe now is a good time to take a shot at it. I'm not making any promises, but perhaps I might just pleasantly surprise myself and get something up for each weekday of April. If I did so, would you read it? Would you respond?

My health task for today was to avoid my laptop, which I have used as a mega distraction from getting anything non-computery done in my life, for as many of my waking hours as possible. It feels a little goofy saying that, as I've cozied in now to write this post, but I was pretty successful. I worked on a log cabin lap quilt that has been in the early stages for far too long (I've hyperlinked there to the blog for the book that inspired the project in the first place). I also made some bunting for friends who I'll be visiting within the week with new babies or soon-to-be babies (as in, ones that aren't out yet). I tried an infrared sauna for the first time (more on that later in the week, I promise). Without the distraction of the facebook homepage, for example, my mind was more my own instead of getting caught up in other people's status updates. There were moments where my knee-jerk reaction was to check my email when I was feeling a twinge of boredom, but in the end I felt better for not following the impulse.

So, looking inwards more, and outwards less, is a goal for this month of deliberate health-seeking. Another is to take liver cleansing herbs for 30 days, and to help them in their efforts by introducing less junk to my system (much more on that later, too). And the third is to do yoga daily - whether it's just an asana or two in my bedroom, or a 90 minute Bikram class, my body (and mind) could really use the stretching.

How about you - do you have any health goals for April? Let me know, and perhaps I can incorporate them into some of my blog postings over the next four weeks.

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"Domestic affair... do you think it's a funny title?" I asked a friend.
"Funny ha-ha?" she responded, "well, no not really."
"But 'domestic affair', it's like what's going on in the nation, but it's also me, being drawn to all these domestic tasks - knitting, cooking, caring for small children..." I tried to explain.
"I like that it has the word affair in it," she concluded.

jae's first book!

Get It Ripe cover Have you seen my award-winning whole foods cookbook Get It Ripe: a fresh take on vegan living (Arsenal Pulp Press, 2008)? Keep your eyes peeled for it!
To join the Facebook group for the book, go here.


about the blog:

about the cookbooks:

While I love hearing from you, and read each and every one of your e-mails, please understand that I just cannot respond to all of them due to the rate at which they're coming in these days!

If you have a question, I might have already answered it here.

in the press

live in person!

come see me:
* Vida Vegan Con in Portland, OR, August 26-28, 2011.

...but better yet, check the calendar for details!



    foodie fridays (posts with recipes)

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    Monday starts a month of more deliberate health-se...
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    New Year's Special, part 2: Here we go, 2012!
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    Wednesday Q&A: Freezing Up


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