Sunday, March 22, 2009

Savor the Flavor

For New Year's Eve 2009 I savored a scrumptious dinner at my favorite restaurant, Honey. Every time I dine there, the rich flavors of each dish merge together to create a lively party in my mouth. And I am reminded that I want to learn more about spices...

I remember back in my first days living in my first apartment away from home, reading a recipe that called for 1/4 tsp. of dill weed. I was pinching pennies to the max, so I just couldn't rationalize spending 5 bucks for a large jar of spice I might never use again. I brainstormed possible substitutions, but my eventual solution was to creep into my parents' kitchen with a zip lock baggie and capture a dash of dill from my mother's plastic tupperware spice organizer (I think that's as close as I ever came to stealing). But now I am a real grown up, and I have my very own lovely spice collection made of irregular shaped glass bottles and metal tins, alphabetically lined up on a miniature lazy susan in my cupboard.

Piled up next to this swirling spiceland are boxes and boxes of herbal tea. My most recent addition to my tea collection is Numi's Organic White Rose. I first experienced this tea at Honey: before, during, and after that flavorful New Year's Eve meal. I think our server might have tired from bringing me refills on hot water over and over again, but I just couldn't stop myself from drinking more and more. I relished the delicate floral scent, the blushing of the water as it turned slightly pink while steeping, and the genuine taste of love. I was so inspired by this particular flavor that I searched high and low at various grocery stores and gourmet shops to find it. But after much exploration with no success, I let the "buy local" ideal go, and I was prepared to order it online and pay exorbitant shipping costs. It was just then that I discovered the tea as I was casually browsing the grocery section at our brand new super-sized Target, of all places! I couldn't stop smiling as I went through the check out line. The law of attraction came through for me- again!


I also adore lavender-flavored delicacies...lavender lemonade and lavender ice cream are amongst my favorites! Perhaps because lavender has a natural calming effect? Or perhaps because it's so different...


How can you savor the flavor of life?

Choose yummy love,
Grace

Friday, March 13, 2009

Yoga Retreat

Thought I'd spread some yoga luv this weekend with a link to Eric Laurtis' (talented photographer and storyteller) blog entry about his recent yoga adventures in Mexico. He shared a gorgeous slideshow, documenting the glory of sunsets and the beauty of everybody (every-BODY).

What past experience made your heart unexpectedly, blissfully sing?

Remember that experience with all your senses, and feel the bliss again- right now.

Rediscover love,
Grace

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Oh, happy day!

It's challenging to remain positive when all you see on the news and read about in the paper is dreary and depressing. That's why I subscribe to the Good News Network. It's free, and their mission is to provide a "Daily Dose of News to Enthuse." The Good News Network is a clearinghouse for the gathering and dissemination of positive news stories from around the globe. Daily stories will confirm what we already believe — that good news itself is not in short supply; the advertising of it is.

Last week I learned about someone else who is making a positive difference from my Daily Candy updates. She's a stationary designer named Tristan Shout Brando, and she created The Bright Side Project: Every day in March there will be a question posed by an accessory designer (coming months will have different themes). One lucky reader with a creative answer will win a creation from said designer. Easy as that. The queries are intended to get people thinking on the — you guessed it — bright side. Think: “How do you define internal peace?”

And in honor of this month's holiday, St. Patrick's Day, I'd like to share a website entirely devoted to rainbow sitings! Appreciating both the precious and mundane qualities of rainbows, the site is offered as a place to visit and revisit for reflection, contemplation, humour and curiosity. The project imagines a growing collection of images documenting those moments when a rainbow appears and wonders what exchanges may be sparked by such a collection.

When you see a rainbow in the sky, do you pause to soak it up?

Choose love and happiness,
Grace

Dislcaimer: Much of the writing in this entry of happy resources was borrowed from various websites to provide accurate mission descriptions.

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Food

Last night was Game Night- a monthly event that I initiated in January to encourage socializing and sharing amongst all my friends. It's a potluck and BYOB scenario, and there are always brownies that get devoured pretty much instantly. I munched on carrot sticks and a delicious vegan cheese dip as my friends eyed me with scrutiny and wonder (probably more of the latter since they ARE my friends!). I sighed and reminded them that I love food just as much as they do. But over the past few years, as I've practiced more and more yoga, I've become incredibly fine-tuned to my body's responses to foods. I prefer to nurture my body with foods that fuel rather than depress. I eat almost totally gluten free (which basically means no wheat products), as little sugar as possible (NO high fructose corn syrup!), and as minimally processed foods as I can. I try to eat organic, too, since I'd rather not eat nasty pesticides. I want to encourage you to think about the food that you ingest and how your body feels after you eat it. Personally, I want to feel alive and energized after eating: not depleted, tired, and irritable (sound familiar?!). My friends tend to take the defensive and insist that they are honest to goodness happier when eating an extra large ice cream sunday. I think the happiness from sweets is only temporary, and in the long run will probably make them gain weight and just have them craving more and more. As I always remind them, life is all about choices. Yes, sometimes it's more expensive or more "work" to eat the way that I choose to. But it's worth it for how amazing I feel!

How do your food choices make you feel?

Choose love!
Grace

PS Two foodie books that I recently borrowed from the library:
"Kitchen Literacy: How We Lost Knowledge of Where Food Comes from and Why We Need to Get It Back" and "In Defense of Food: An Eater's Manifesto". I'm still reading them, so I can't quite give you a thumbs up or down, but I'm definitely intrigued...