Monday, December 21, 2009

repeat repeat repeat...

loving this...

http://blip.fm/profile/lane/blip/30332545/Gotye-Hearts_A_Mess

awesome!

Lots of photo shoots at Organico and our spicy thai burger is just to die for. I don't eat wheat but still enjoy it without the bun, the naked version! Having fun in a silly way! Make your thai burger at home, get any veggie patty, I personally don't like the ones that taste like meat, the garden burgers are my favorite, cook it with a touch of olive oil, cumin and spicy salsa. Then top with sweet chili sauce, spinach, tomato and pineapple. Inspired from Mr. Sutter, or rather stolen:)

amazed....

he showed up at voleyball, i hope he never finds out about my blog
because I'd be glowing in red cheeks. Baking banana bread, eating
tamales, fixing the ventilators at the restaurant, still in tooth pain
that sucks, but enjoying life in paradise!

Friday, December 18, 2009

decisions, decisions, decisions...

Meet Scott! Vegetarian, green business lover...Comes here for vacation, wants to help out with business as a volunteer!! What, i am just so amazed, some people do have a heart. There is hope in humanity! But I am so damn confused, i have no clue where to put him, don't even have the patience to show him what he can do. I'd rather do it myself and be exhausted....you know the story, same thing every year:) So, had to say no to free labor. Plus he is too cute to get into the kitchen with me, dangerous, but maybe he plays volleyball??? Sleepyyyyyyyy!

Happy Holidays!

Joy

It is in the air,
The warm breeze
Waves singing
Millions of stars
Winking deep into your eyes
The juicy, sexy, loving
Joy

The love
the gifts
the hugs
we have it all

more than all,
that space
deep in your heart
mili moments between thoughts
dreams
words
sighs
the delicious calmness
unspoken
but only felt
ahhh! makes me only scream
yeahhhhhhhh!

I am grateful for it all.

Happy Holidays!


Sunday, December 13, 2009

Israeli Turkish Coffee


Ooops, not coffee free anymore... Its been maybe 3 weeks, but today, I had to try a cup of Turkish coffee in Montezuma, an invitation that doesn't happen very often:)

There is a new restaurant in Montezuma, Pugga's. Super sweet family from Israel. We have so much in common, I feel so good to have friends close to my culture. Plus, Maya the owner, is an amazing volleyball player. Today, when she offered Turkish Coffee, I was a little surprised even have to admit, I said to myself, "Turkish coffee, what a confidence:)"...Her brother took out the coffee from the refrigirator and poured hot water over it in a glass. I was terrified! I doubted my eyes...Then, of course, I had to tell that whatever they are making maybe coffee but is totally not turkish coffee. Then, we started laughing because we were heated up over how to make Turkish coffee in Costa Rica in an Israeli restaurant. These are so precious moments, when we catch ourselves being serious over silly things and we can laugh at ourselves. Then, of course, the whole thing became such a joyful, funny conversation. Maya swears that is how they do it in Israel. I believe her:) Thank god I have all the tools and coffee from Istanbul to make them the real deal, plus I also do the cup reading:) However, I have to admit, the coffee tasted great, like a very strong americano, much better than any coffee I'd in Costa Rica, of course except Organico:) I love my little store.

Though the coffee tasted great, not feeling that great with the buzz right now..Crashed pretty fast, so I don't know...I love coffee, i love the taste but it just doesn't work for me right now. Oh well...I just read Sarma's post and it is so much fun to read that we all go through the same holes...Life is beautiful as is, it is perfect.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Freedom Brownies




These amazing brownies are vegan and gluten free! Yes, you can laugh! My super complicated eating habits are also making me laugh at myself, never gets boring over in the baking fairyland... Yesterday, I went over to lunch to a new friend's house and I could not help but laugh to hear "I didn't know if you eat olive oil, so I didn't dress the salad";...come onnnnn, i am not that picky:) Nowadays, I am vegan, gluten free, off coffee, struggling with wine and honoring chocolate daily.

Here is the recipe for super gooey brownies with brown rice flour. Try it at home, almost impossible to mess this up, except for melting the chocolate...That has always been a fingers crossing, praying for the angels, wishing for the best, or "throwing some salt for good luck" action for me, but hey it works:))) Seriously, melting chocolate is a delicate task, and should't be taken lightly. Best way is to use a double boiler. Heat water, put a pan over the water and watch the chocolate melt patiently. Also, very important is to cut the chocolate in small equal chunks. Really delicious, such as life:) Besito!

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Oil an 8 inch square baking pan and set aside.

1 cup (175 g) nondairy semisweet chocolate chips, melted and cooled
1/2 cup (128 g) sweet potato purée
2 tablespoons (30 ml) canola oil
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons (90 ml) soy milk
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/2 cup (60 g) raw brown sugar
1/3 cup (53 g) brown rice flour
2 tablespoons (10 g) unsweetened cocoa powder
1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
1/4 teaspoon baking powder

In a large bowl, combine melted chips, sweet potato, oil, soy milk, and vanilla.
In another bowl, sift together sugar, flour, cocoa powder, salt, baking powder.
Fold dry ingredients into wet, being careful not to over mix.
Place and level batter into prepared pan.
Bake for 26 minutes.
Let cool in pan, on a wire rack. Let cool completely in fridge before
slicing.

Makes 8 brownies.

Wednesday, December 09, 2009

let the games begin!

i don't know when i stopped playing volleyball. Most likely when I moved here and thought it is time for yoga. Aaaaah, those days are so over. Ok, here it is, long waited apology from my friends. I am not a yogi, and I find yoga a little overrated. Sorry. I am having so much fun playing volleyball, i have been doing it all my life, i don't know why i let that go…Crazy. And I am damn good at it. Thank god my killer serves are still with me and it is just magical here to play on the beach and meet other super cool v-ball players. And there is nothing more sexy than a man who really knows how to dig a ball. Ufff, finally. We started weekly games already, with posters, ect. and people are showing up. I am so happy! I used to play everyday, i don't remember not playing this long, i am finally getting myself, finding my fun and my peeps. Plus these hungry gangsters eat whatever I bake, no questions! Yogis are a bit uptight about the agave and ultra organic olive oil….hahahahah…i am aliveeeeeeeeee!!! Let the music play, let the games begin!

Tuesday, December 08, 2009

Sit down and shut up!

'the state of ambiguity-that messy, greasy, mixed-up, confused and awful situation you are living through right now-is enlightenment itself." this brings tears to my eyes. Life is this very moment. It is from this book, Sit down and shut up! Oh, how i wish i can do that. I think chocolate helps with this situation, or i want to believe it would help, so lets bake some brownies.


Monday, December 07, 2009

beloved...

"Dear Goddess: The lady reading this is beautiful, classy, strong and I love her.

Help her live her life to the fullest.

Please promote her and cause her to excel above her expectations.

Help her shine in the darkest places where it seems impossible to love.

Protect her at all times, and lift her up when she needs you the most.

And let her know that she walks with you, and that she will always be safe and beloved.

Friday, December 04, 2009

Super Sexy Birthday!

Happy Birthday Organico!

December 7th marks our 4th season and I am super excited for all the new energy, new recipes, new music (!) and new projects like our 2010 calendar and vegan cooking classes.

The past three years have been such an humbling experience for me personally, to really dive into the business, to see my dreams come true against all my fears and to meet many of you and your beautiful light. Thank you for being here, supporting Organico, blessing this place and our food with your smiles and laughter. With all your wonderful energy, after three years, Organico and Montezuma, feels home to me.

As part of our 4th birthday celebration, we are going to do a beach clean-up followed by a party on December 7th, between 5pm to 7pm. If you are around, stop by and have a "super sexy" shot with us. If you can't make it, know that you are in our hearts and we will be sending tasty "super sexy" love to your way, you can also join us with your super sexy, here is the recipe:

Super Sexy

The super popular, Super Sexy is absolutely the shake of the year, a client and staff favorite! If you haven't had one at Organico, give it a try at home and let us know how you like it. We'd love to hear from you and hopefully will see you in magical Montezuma soon.

1.5 frozen banana
1/4 avocado
1 tsp spirulina
1 tsp wheatgrass powder
1 cup fresh mango (or mango juice)

Blend it all and slurp slowly!

Lots of love from Organico team and Ozlem!

Sunday, November 29, 2009

drooling naked burgers...

my friends...are pretty hard core when it comes to food. Check out Jeff's burger idea and he wants to try it this week. This is beyond even my fairy talents. But I asked for inspiration, so here it is...sounds drooling good...

"....An open faced burger with a thin toasted crispy piece of sesame and whole-grain bread on the bottom, then spread on a lot of wasabi-ginger-avocado mayo, then layer with julienne of pickled cucumber/carrot/beet, then a layer of mizuni, arugula, and sunflower sprouts then top it with the mushroom cap (which will be basted with a blend of olive oil, lemon, sea salt and cracked black pepper and then hard pressed and rolled in sesame seeds then grilled to perfection sesame seed side down) and then placed sesame side up and topped with thinly sliced shoestring onions and shredded ginger which has been sauteed in olive oil until the onions are dark brown and crispy and then splashed with soy-sauce in the hot pan.

Serve with a steak knife and oven-baked sweet potato fries and the special mayo to dip in on the side. 

This could very well be the greatest vegan burger of all time. i'll be the guinea pig taster anytime this week except for Wed and Thurs..."

lets see what I'll do with this. It sounds really hard for me right now:)

Friday, October 16, 2009

Princess of Power Smoothie!

It is super fun when i invent something delicious and start feeling like She-RA, the twin sister of He-Man and laugh at myself:)...This smoothie is deliciously green and I swear it is full of super natural powers. Yes, of course I watched too many episodes of She-RA growing up:)

Here is the recipe for one:)

1 tablespoon of hemp butter (if you don't have hemp butter, use tahini)
1/2 cup pineapple
1 celery stick
1 frozen banana
1 tablespoon of green powder (I used KYO Green, you can make your own super power with spirulina, wheatgrass, ect)
3 leafs of wild cilantro, or 1/2 bunch of cilantro
1/2 cup water

that's all...blend it well and feel the power...Sorry, I forgot to take a picture of the smoothie and drank it at once:( Bad blogger:)) Got a picture of the empty glass:) Wanna see the after effects? Watch the video...

I want to tell more about cilantro, not only because it tastes amazing but it is also the secret agent in the herb universe. Fresh cilantro, sticks to the chemicals in your body and takes them out, for example mercury. Cilantro also controls blood sugar, lowers cholesterol and fight inflammation (wanna clear up recurring infections, both viral and bacterial, eat some with omega-3 rich foods, like hemp, flax, borrage oil.) Woooo hooo! Fight the bad stuff in your body, with She-RA power! Wild cilantro, is something i discovered in Costa Rica. It is a thin long flat leaf, ok i just took a picture, much easier:) I never saw it in San Francisco, but maybe in the Mexican markets, they must have it. If not, good old skinny cilantro is still amazing.

More detailed cilantro research here, if you really wanna learn more:)



Wednesday, October 14, 2009

decadency in the jungle

ahhh, life in costa rica...in montezuma in the rainy season....everyday the present opens up with beautiful flowers, crashing waves, lots of sand, a little rain drop, soft breeze, fireflies....discoveries of routine daily life is so precious, i love my life now. Sure it changes daily; I can't promise emotional stability now, but I am working on it:) Organico is closed, I am as lazy as any cricket and yes, the ants are working hard on finishing my red quinoa smuggled from San Francisco...But, I am happy to be lazy, it seems like not enough time just to be. Note to my 90 year old self, you were happy and lazy at 33 so suck it up and dance like crazy and don't worry about rice and beans:))

Anyway, long introduction, laziness comes with its benefits of discovering decadencies, self comfort, more digging into how can I enhance this experience of pleasure, i feel like royalty in my sand castle! So, of course coffee for a vegan girl was decadent with soy milk at home and black anywhere else...until...I discovered something new at a friend's castle. Coconut Milk! I had it with regular coffee and immediately tried it with cappuccino...aaaaahhh, what was i thinking, creamy, delicious, mostly, decadent!!! It is a very rich experience...So enjoy a cup of coffee for me, with coconut milk, and smile to your inner goddess and start dancing before 90!!!

oh, here is a video too...sorry it is on you tube and no access from Turkey....

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Magic Pudding....

I am not a fan of puddings. I dont like spending time at the stove and constantly mixing under heat, especially in the tropics. Until I discovered chia seeds! Here is a great super speedy recipe that does not need any stove time plus all the benefits of chia seeds...high in omega-3 fatty acids (in fact, the highest-known vegetable source of omega-3s!) and a 1-oz. serving contains about 4grs of protein. Check out more benefits of this amazing seed here...

Ok, one last thing, if you hate tapioca pudding, pass this recipe with confidence:)))

Chia Pudding (serves 1-2):

1/2 cup chia seeds

1 1/2 cup milk (soy or other non-dairy milk, coconut or almond milk would be great too)
1/4 cup agave
a few dashes cinnamon
1 tablespoon of acai powder or 1 tablespoon cacao powder

a pinch of salt

chopped fresh fruit to top (optional)

Place the chia seeds in a bowl or covered container. Mix all the ingredients with a fork and let it soak on the counter for at least 10 minutes until thickened, or cover and soak in the fridge overnight.  Stir again before serving, and top with fresh fruit and another dash of cinnamon or spices.

Enjoy!

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Green Coconut Chutney

Just before my San Francisco trip, I made this incredible coconut chutney...It is easy, delicious, mess-free and not to mention the amazing green color. Give this a try if you can find fresh coconut. You can serve it with curry and rice of course, or just with rice crackers, or as a sandwich spread with avocado and tomato. Ahhhhhh! Divine...If you can't finish it, highly unlikely, this green goodness keeps about  a week.

Green Coconut Chutney

makes about 1 cup

1 tablespoon ginger, chopped
1 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup grated fresh coconut (yes, I am blessed to have fresh coconut)
1 cup lightly packed coarsely chopped cilantro, leaves and stems
1/2 cup fresh mint leaves, coarsely chopped
1 teaspoon cumin seeds, pounded with a mortar and pestle
About 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
About 1/4 cup water
2 teaspoons agave (2 tsp brown sugar)
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1/8 teaspoon garam masala
dash of cayenne pepper, or more as you wish...

Blend all the ingredients in a food processor for about 2 minutes, until you get a smooth-ish texture...It will not be like smooth paste, but will have compact consistency, not too thick or too runny. Taste and be creative to adjust to your liking- add more lime, salt or agave to make your own perfect version...I like it tart and a little salty. You can't mess up with this recipe, I promise!

Recipe adjusted mostly from http://www.asiandumplingtips.com/2009/07/indian-coconut-and-cilantro-green-chutney-recipe-lili-chatni.html

San Francisco Dream


I'm back!
It's been ages and I feel guilty for not sharing new recipes or updates for such a long time. I was in San Francisco for two weeks and it was like a dream...It's been 3 years and damn I missed that place so much. I was overwhelmed, way too emotional, joyful and lots of tears. Connecting with old friends, deep conversations on my life and what the hell I am doing in a little town (!!! Pura Vida) and lots of laugher, and of course amazing food:)) I could not even get to see many friends, it is amazing how fast all happened...Life in Montezuma is so slow compared to the city or maybe I got much slower, I would take hours in a store just observing people, or be fascinated by amazingly packaged raw foods and of course Iphone...it was like a big show for me...Even the yoga classes felt different, a lot tougher at fast forward speed.

My little sister now lives in Berkeley, so I am going to be back, because it was totally not enough. I uploaded some pictures from the trip...The best moments were the first hugs with my old friends, the feeling of returning home, feeling the love, still get teary :) and really to see how much I have grown in these three years, no more be a vegan or else fights!!!..Before I was anxious to figure it all out, to know, to learn, to just get it all done, run in any direction, finish it, aaaah, mind blowing city rush...and the big question of what is the meaning of all this...Good news, I am not in a rush to figure it out anymore, at least I know that enjoying the moment, and breathing the joy is good enough. I don't know what the hell I am doing, but I am back home packed with weird looking, strange, exotic new ingredients (black chickpeas, xtan-gum, kale chips, gotu kola, peanut butter chips (!!!), coconut yogurt....and another load of luggage!) I will be back baking and want to share more. Is there anyone reading my blog anymore? I know you do dad:)) I love you!

Please have your greens daily! Not only for your physical health but really for your mental and emotional body, greens are vital. I had a green juice almost everyday at Cafe Gratitude...One of the best places in San Francisco and Berkeley and the staff is just fantastic. They gave me the recipe so I will share it with you. It is not the recipe but the love that makes the food special. I love sharing recipes and you add the love. You can do it at home, 50% cucumber, 35% celery, 15% kale or spinach and 1/2 lemon....so easy...Happy Greens! My good friend Ozlem had a blast trying her first green juice, yes it takes time to get used to it, especially after SF mojitos!!!

Friday, June 12, 2009

wandering around...

it was my first day off since four weeks today...I needed to get out and just be, take space and uplift myself... i strolled around the streets, read, shopped, drank over sweet chai at Starbucks, met an amazing couple at their 90's who told me about their Istanbul and childhood stories...even discovered an all organic spice and herb store and bought Surme, all natural eye makeup used by the Arabs, sorry could only find a Turkish link for the benefits. Now back home, with my pretty eyes, having an all green salad topped with roasted eggplants, artichokes, peas and buckwheat with pomegranate olive oil dressing, alone but not lonely.

then got the article from Daily Om, feeling much better already....


June 12, 2009

Fanning the Creative Flames
Boredom

The human mind thrives on novelty. What was once a source of pleasure can become tedious after a time. Though our lives are full, boredom lurks around every corner because we innately long for new experiences. Yet boredom by its very nature is passive. In this idle state of mind, we may feel frustrated at our inability to channel our mental energy into productive or engaging tasks. We may even attempt to lose ourselves in purposeless or self-destructive pursuits. While this can be a sign of depression, it can also be an invitation issued from your mind, asking you to challenge yourself. Boredom can become the motivation that drives you to learn, explore the exotic, experiment, and harness the boundless creative energy within.

In Hindu and Buddhist traditions, boredom is perceived as a pathway to self-awareness. Boredom itself is not detrimental to the soul—it is the manner in which we respond to it that determines whether it becomes a positive or a negative influence in our lives. When you respond by actively filling the emptiness you feel lurking in yourself, you cultivate creativity and innovation. If, when in the grip of boredom, you have difficulty acknowledging the merits of any activities you might otherwise enjoy, generate your own inspiration. Before you find yourself beset by boredom, create a list of tasks you can consult when it feels like there is simply nothing to do. Referring to a list of topics you want to learn more about, projects you've yet to begin, or even pending chores can spark your creative energy and reawaken your zest for life.

When we are troubled by boredom, it is not that there is nothing to do but rather that we are not stimulated by the options before us. A bored mind can be the canvas upon which innovation is painted and the womb in which novelty is nourished. When you identify boredom as a signal that you need to test your boundaries, it can be the force that presses you to strive for opportunities you thought were beyond your reach and to indulge your desire for adventure.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

istanbul days...

I don't believe people are looking for the meaning of life as much as they are looking for the experience of being alive.
Joseph Campbell




Tuesday, June 09, 2009

companion

i love joseph campbell...i first read him in 1999, and made some of my bravest decisions with his "jump it is not as wide as you think" quote. It was really not that wide:)

While going thru the old stuff at home, I found my first Campbell book. Tons of memories, charged with emotions from all directions, past depressions, joy, cries for strength, being lost, not knowing where to start...looking at the past with my clear mind now, I see so many things shift, change and weaken. Impermanence.  Where I am now, i do see the journey that has started long time ago and i am loving reading through him again, discovering me, depths of the beauty and the pain, such a blessing to connect with his joy and the "companion".

this is for you, enjoy...

the privilege of a lifetime is being
who you are

the goal of the hero trip
down to the jewel point
is to find those levels in the psyche
that open open open
and finally open to the mystery
of your Self
being buddha consciousness
or the Christ.

that is the journey.

Saturday, June 06, 2009

happy full moon...

how lucky we are to be alive, to breath, to be free and just be. celebrating me, you, family, love, life, happiness. my dad got out from the hospital and we had dinner last night, no fighting for a couple of hours, first time ever at home....happy full moon!


Full Moon in Sagittarius
Sunday, June 7, 2009
11:12am PDT
17º 07'

©2009 Lisa Dale Miller
All rights reserved

Sagittarius represents idealism, faith, enthusiasm, the quest for meaning, and a generosity of spirit. The Full Moon in Sagittarius is an invitation to bask in the light of some good old-fashioned Jupiterian optimism and joy! This Full Moon represents the union of the physical and the spiritual in the search for knowledge. Sagittarius wants to understand the totality of existence through "journeying" in all its forms. This sign loves to travel abroad to foreign lands or armchair travel with books and on the Internet. It also loves to move through the spirit realms, and use the mind to uncover deeper levels of the psyche or theorize about philosophical and moral issues. The bright fire of knowledge is at its apex on a Full Moon in Sagittarius.

This Full Moon is tempered by a T-square with Sun in Gemini and Saturn in practical Virgo and Mars/Venus/Mercury in grounded, show-me Taurus. That Mercury will be spiritually energized by a square to Jupiter/Neptune/Chiron conjunction in Aquarius. All this intense planetary energy focused around such an expansive Full Moon makes it perfect for a celebration: make a bonfire, gather friends and loved ones to while away the night telling stories of worlds seen and unseen. Share experiences of other cultures and far away places, or share your spiritual insights and speak about the paths and belief systems that worked and those that didn't. Open to the desire to understand your place in the universe, to know the deeper meaning of life, and to do both through investigation and conversation.

This is a great night to deepen wisdom though meditation, chanting, and prayer. Have your group gaze at the Moon, the stars, the vast ocean of sky above us, and seek connection with the universe. Use visualization to send them on this personal journey and then have them return to the gathering and share their insights with the group. The cosmic/global spiritual healing energy of Jupiter/Neptune/Chiron in Aquarius (the visionary) and Uranus in Pisces (awakening into healing) joins the grounded, bodily experience of Mars/Venus/Mercury in Taurus and Saturn in Virgo to form a rainbow bridge connecting personal insight with global awakening.

Since Sagittarius is naturally optimistic and enthusiastic, we can mine these qualities to help us find a calm center in these turbulent times. Going to new places expands your sense of who you are and how your life stacks up. After all, perspective is a great vehicle for growth and gratefulness, two Sagittarian ideals. Sagittarius is convinced that everything happens for a reason; no matter how painful or how hard the lesson.

The Sagittarian Moon represents the ideal form of communicating wisdom with compassion and joy. When you communicate do you do it with compassion? Do you look to help not hurt? Do you constantly talk or just talk to hear your own voice or do you speak with forethought and care? Words do have meaning and effect, so use them wisely and never as a weapon. But it is not enough to talk the talk; we must walk the walk as well.

All this deep insight will force the issue of clearly, honestly, seeing the dangerous and dark side of organized religion, which is ruled by Sagittarius. Causing death and abuse in the name of Allah, Yahweh, Jesus or any other god is a reflection of how disconnected the fundamentalist wings of the major religions are from true spiritual principles. Dogma and codification are the by-products of fossilized spirituality. Don't give in to their trickery, but insist on continuing your own search for truth and wisdom. Sun in Gemini brings openness to old spiritual beliefs while Jupiter/Neptune/Chiron in Aquarius and Uranus in Pisces jumpstart freethinking. Both loosen attachment to deluded old patterns and beliefs. Jupiter/Chiron/Neptune in Aquarius, Uranus in Pisces and Saturn in Virgo are crying out for new solutions to global hatred and disconnection that stems from fundamentalism. It is time to turn away from old, destructive notions of religion that keep us beholden to some intermediary for experience of the Divine. We have ready and direct access right now since our common source is an underlying blissful reality from which all existence arises. This is the truth of our interconnectivity and our sameness. Diversity is the key element to transforming our isolationist spiritual beliefs. True spirituality is all inclusive and all-loving.

This means that it is time to turn off your TV and tuning into the broadcast channel of existence. This particular part of the Sagittarian spectrum is all about questioning, postulating, and reaching for universal truths that exist outside the boundaries of spiritual/academic dogma and rhetoric. Isn't it interesting that over on the other end of the Sagittarian spectrum are the religious, political, economic, and educational institutions telling us what to believe, what to think, what to do and how to act. This is the paradox of Sagittarius: it seeks meaning, finds what it thinks is the truth, institutionalizes that truth for the masses, and then uses all its energy to stop adherents from searching for deeper truth and meaning.

Truth and meaning don't live somewhere far away. It is not in heaven, it is not in the words of some channeler, it is not in your guru, it is not in your church, it is not in your school, it is not in your therapist, it is not in your psychic, tarot card reader or astrologer, it is not in your government, it is not in your guides, angels, or other disembodied entities you have chosen to give away your power. The Earth is speaking to you, every minute of every day! The answers you seek are in the wind, the movement of the waves, in the activity in a bee hive or an ant hill, in the intelligence that moves the stars and planets, in the storms and earthquakes, in the songs of birds, in the howl of a wolf, in the grace of a deer, in the smile of your child/spouse/parent/friend
, in the sensual embrace of your lover, in the flowing water of a river, in the shape of a cloud, in the cosmic music of the shimmering particles and waves that make up our universe! Go outside, be in nature and tune in to the teachings of Mother Earth.

Get your Ego out of spirit's way and open yourself to listening deeply to the existent wisdom of our world. Accepting the animal part of humanity as a source of knowledge will help bring harmony, peace and generosity back to our deadened species. This is why Sagittarius is a Centaur: half animal, half human. Think about it, it will make sense to you! Above all else, make sure to spend this Full Moon celebrating your life with enthusiasm and optimism and sharing this joy with everyone you meet!

©2009 Lisa Dale Miller
All rights reserved

Monday, May 25, 2009

The Start of Change

I wonder if there is someone at Daily OM, following my life...The articles are so synced with what is going on in my life...I am lucky to have friends who know me for sooo long, to get down to these issues, and trying to see the patterns and at some point break them. My mom just said today that she is afraid of showing her love, especially to her loved ones, because of her fear of loss. Wow...I was so sad to hear it. I was sad for her, I wanted to hug her, but I am just like her, instead of hugging her, I just made dinner...Things are changing, it is slow and fast, real and dreamy, easy and hard, but this is it..right now...ufff I want chocolate...please.........

The Start of Change

Breaking Family Cycles

It is easy to believe that in leaving our childhood homes and embarking upon the journey of adulthood, we have effectively removed ourselves from harmful and self-perpetuating familial patterns. In looking closely at ourselves, however, we may discover that our behaviors and beliefs are still those that were impressed upon us during our youth by our parents, grandparents, and the generations that preceded them. We may find ourselves unconsciously perpetuating cycles of the previous generations, such as fear of having enough, not showing affection, and secrecy patterns. Yet the transmission of negative patterns from one generation to the next is not inevitable. It is possible to become the endpoint at which negative family cycles that have thrived for generations are exhausted and can exert their influence no longer. Breaking the pattern is a matter of overcoming those values imprinted upon us long ago in order to replace them with pure love, tolerance, and conscious awareness!

Even if you have struggled with the cumulative effects of family cycles that were an expression of established modes of living and a reflection of the strife your ancestors were forced to endure, you can still liberate yourself from the effects of your family history. The will to divest yourself of old, dark forms of familial energy and carry forth a new loving energy may come in the form of an epiphany. You may one day simply realize that certain aspects of your early life have negatively affected your health, happiness, and ability to evolve as an individual. Or you may find that in order to transcend long-standing patterns of limiting beliefs, irrational behavior, and emotional stiltedness, you have to question your values and earnestly examine how your family has impacted your personality. Only when you understand how family cycles have influenced you can you gain freedom from those cycles.

In order to truly change, you must give yourself permission to change. Breaking family patterns is in no way an act of defiance or betrayal. It is important that you trust yourself implicitly when determining the behaviors and beliefs that will help you overwrite the generation-based cyclical value system that limited your individual potential. Many people are on the earth at this time to break family cycles, for all of you are true pioneers. In breaking negative family cycles, you will discover that your ability to express your feelings and needs grows exponentially and that you will embark upon a journey toward greater well-being that can positively impact generations to come.

Sunday, May 24, 2009

New moon....

New Moon in Gemini
Sunday, May 24, 2009
5:11am PDT
3º 27'
©2009 Lisa Dale Miller
All rights reserved

We are what we think.
All that we are arises with our thoughts.
With our thoughts we make the world.
Speak or act with a pure mind,
and happiness will follow you
as your shadow, unshakeable.

How can a troubled mind understand the way?
Your worst enemy cannot harm you as much
as your own thoughts unguarded.
But once mastered,
no one can help you as much,
not even your father or your mother.

Buddha (from the Dhammapada, translated by Thomas Byron)

Gemini rules information: its gathering and dissemination. Gemini represents knowledge of the material plane of existence, which is made up of binary information bits; a digital landscape of 0's and 1's. Gemini rules the mind and our thought processes. This is the New Moon for all of us to reclaim our mental space; to set limits on what gets our attention, and to carefully examine how our current diet of information is affecting our lives. As you may have noticed, our world is suffering from a bad case of close-mindedness fueled by fear, hatred and delusion. Concurrently, we are also suffering from information overload. Our lives have become a roller coaster of good news one day, bad news the next, and a constant need to deal with the ensuing manic reactions that follow both extremes.

Gemini's symbol is the twins, but they are not identical; they represent the broad spectrum of experience and therefore oppose one another. However, their shared transcendent source makes them identical. Gemini allows us to realize the truth that all things, which appear different on the surface, share a fundamental sameness.

On this New Moon we can work toward opening the mind to a diverse range of new ideas, while maintaining a perspective rooted in the principles of generosity (Jupiter in Aquarius) and responsibility to serve (Saturn in Virgo). Though retrograde Mercury in Taurus is not great for open-mindedness, Venus and Mars in Aires are all about trying new things. Neptune/Chiron/North Node/Jupiter in lightning-fast Aquarius can make a steady mind difficult to achieve, these planets make for a brainstorming opportunity bar none. If you find yourself feeling pulled in a thousand different directions simultaneously, this is the source. Do what you can to reign yourself in intellectually and verbally, while allowing the play of ideas free reign to take you places you might not otherwise go. If you make your living in high tech, communication, politics, education, or new media, these aspects are incredible for brainstorming sessions or meetings to forge new creative or professional relationships.

Gemini, with its love of communication, makes this New Moon a good one to work on opening up around areas of our lives that have been mired in conflict and misunderstanding. Even with Mercury retrograde in obstinate, opinionated Taurus, the Sun/Moon conjunction in Gemini and all the planets in Aries and Aquarius, help us realize we can talk openly and we can find the right words. We can be inspired to open up to new ideas. We can relax and let our words be a force for healing and transformation.

Gemini is best symbolized by flexibility, changeability, and adaptation, and this is the New Moon to cultivate these qualities and incorporate them into our daily lives. When strong winds and hard rains come, the supple trees bend and sway with the each gust. It is only the hardened, stiff trees that break and fall. When we harden our hearts and minds, plant our feet and become immovable, we set ourselves up for failure. To survive the gusts of hatred and fear, we must open our minds and create useful dialogue. Fear makes us stiffen up and go rigid.

As you know, all New Moons are a time to initiate new goals, ideas, and desires. Mercury, Gemini's ruler, shows itself in our thoughts, ideas, and our ability to learn. Gemini rules the gathering of knowledge, an inherently open-systems process, that requires us to reach far and wide to get as much data as possible, even opening our minds to perspectives we might normally dismiss. If you are in a researching phase, this is the time to get help and gather as much information as you can about new endeavors. The New Moon in Gemini calls on each of us to open up, talk about it (whatever it is), and open ourselves to feedback.

This is the New Moon to work on your communication skills. Learning how to communicate effectively creates successful relationships. Mars in Aries tends to make us self-centered, impulsive and overly excited about our own ideas and desires. So try warming up to the idea that you are not the center of the universe and your great ideas might get better with some good 'ol Gemini teamwork. It's just not all about you! So open yourself to the perspective of the other. What harm would it do if you chose to see the other side or walked a mile in someone else's shoes? We must all find a way to talk through our disagreements. Walking away in anger never solves anything. Learn to recognize your anger: stop, stay, be quiet, and then speak from a calm rationality and not from the rage.

This is the right New Moon to communicate your wishes, dreams and desires to those who can aid your progress. The truth is, no one does it completely alone and learning to ask for help at the right time is one of life's hardest lessons. Over the next two weeks as the Moon waxes to fullness, try to really hear what those around you have to say about your wishes, and take their advice to heart. Honest and clear communication is a two-way street and the best way to achieve a successful outcome for all.

Of course for those of you who make your living in the communications/publishing field, this is the best time to initiate new projects in film, video, TV, publishing, and writing. Deal with your fear and just get the work out there!

One last thing, Gemini rules change. This is the best night to work on managing your fear of change. Everything changes; it is the nature of Maya, the field of relativity. When we ride the changes and make surfing the waves of change a vehicle for success, we actualize the highest expression of Gemini. This is the New Moon to celebrate the power knowledge holds to broaden our perspective and open our minds!

©2009 Lisa Dale Miller
All rights reserved

What makes us happy?

Great article/research..

It is all in our minds. When we want to be happy, our mind knows what to do, but rather we do have a secret love affair with misery, pain, sadness. We, I mean, I...I can't speak of us yet. I like to generalize, makes the issues easier to digest. The ability to see the big picture is damn hard, I find myself lost in the little crumbs of leftovers..From the research, one of the participants, says this:

However, I have an overriding sense (or philosophy) that it's all a big nothing—or 'chasing after wind' as it says in Ecclesiastes & therefore, at least up to the present, nothing has caused me too much grief"  though ranked one of the happiest, he died at the age of 64.

It is not about how long we live, who can say  78, or 95 would be happier? Lives spent in fear, anxiety, dreadful waiting, waiting for the next meal, next lover, next friend, next vacation, next house, next child..... lives without freedom, joy, urge to jump from bed to smell the flowers, knowing your heart, feeling at peace, breathing...I long for that space...breathing at peace, knowing I am where I am, without the fear of loneliness or death. This is the journey, and sure pit stops are necessary.





Friday, May 22, 2009

Istanbul...

Just uploaded some new pictures from my first days in Istanbul. Check them out...

It is going a little choppy over here. I see that t all my self growth work, when faced with family, is at zero. Nothing has changed. All these hours of meditation, therapy, self realizing moments of the truth, love, forgiveness...Nope, non of that...Acceptance, tolerance, more love... Family, being back at home, living so close to 4 other people who know me more than anyone but at the same time who have no idea who I am, is hard...Having no space to breath is hard. Speaking that out loud is hard. Why do I care so much, I don't know...but for some reason, it makes me scream, shout, tear apart, break things when I am not understood. I do realize I don't show any patience at all. Selfish I have to say...Instead of taking a breath, I bake...but this week, it was not very great either. My most amazing chocolate cake, when done with buckwheat flour, is terrible, horrific. I could not even have more than a bite. Tasteless crap. Amazing how nothing goes right, when my mind is crazy in a self pity mode. Get out! So, I need better gluten-free recipes. Help!

So, I have not mastered being the witness of my mind, instead emotions fly in all directions...anger, jealousy, sadness, joy, happiness, fears...Wow, what an opportunity to practice, but I do want to take it slow, it is all happening too fast and I feel really alone in this. Well, we all are alone in our journey but it would have been nice to have some support in the form of a body, or yoga, or music or something else, therapy, a song or a movie...And again, a bad choice...Worst, I watched Issiz adam, a turkish movie, threw me off completely, very real, sad, romantic love story, full of tears, I fell asleep......Tomorrow is a good day, I just need a little bit of sleep.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Juices and Remedies

I LOVE MY STOMACH!

It is fascinating to me to discover health benefits of veggies and help friends. One common theme is stomach pain, and what to do with it.
Here is the remedy! Plain old cabbage...juiced! It cures ulcers within a few days. You can make your own cabbage juice with half a cup of cabbage to a cup of water and blend for a few minutes. Then, drink this juice at once, without straining. It is not delicious but it is not nasty like Noni. Also, it can be improved with a few leaves of fresh mint, parsley and basil, even celery. It is super cheap and effective.

You can drink as much as you like, but I found that most people do 3 cups a day, 4-10 days. Of course, eliminating the factors that caused your ulcer in the first place is the most important step. That includes changing your diet, avoiding foods that irritate your ulcer (fats, salt).
Sorry no more fried food for a while but you will be healed.

Looking into stress, anxiety and anger are also important. Exercise, anything that makes your heart beat, going to a walk, yoga, running, hooping, biking, dancing...but not power shopping or strolling with your lover. Breathing helps a lot. Try it...give your body the time to heal. Take it easy. No coffee or smoking...but no more pain.

Cabbage is also used a lot for digestive benefits. A cup of blended cabbage juice contains millions of friendly bacteria that aids digestion. My friend Viktoras, swears by cabbage juice and drinks his own elixir everyday. Anything that aids your digestive system is good. We want to move the waste fast from our system and help our body suck the good vitamins and the nutrients.


Here is his recipe for the Kimchi, a little time consuming, but I swear it tastes great.

For more medicinal uses of cabbage, check out Earth Clinic...

More details on Wikipedia and use of cabbage to cure the ulcer.

More scientific research on this on Google.
 
One word of caution, cabbage is not recommended if you have thyroid problems. I do and I try to stay away from it, but if you stomach pain, you can try a cure for a few days with one glass a day instead of 3 glasses and see how you feel. Please be smart about your health choices and don't give your power away by listening to others. It is very important to take charge of your own health. You know your body best.

Tons of nutrition information from World's Healthiest Foods. Great site.
And more...here...

I am happy to do more research, if you have any questions. There must be a natural remedy out there for anything. Migraine pain is next, actually. I have very dear friends here who have asked me about it...





Sunday, May 17, 2009

Watching the stars...

I came all the way to Istanbul to read about this new google product, and not have to go back to Montezuma to use it. We have the best stars in the world.
 

Friday, May 15, 2009

Yogi on the go...

I am going to write about my yogic quest in Istanbul on Yoga Yak!

Thursday, May 14, 2009

travel like a princess!

Feeling nervous about going home, but I guess that is normal, getting out of my comfort zone, not easy. Obviously, I need to learn to delegate work, trust people and work on organizing myself, more than staying in and trying to do everything alone. Plus, my sister needs me, she is getting engaged so no better reason to learn how to be a child and enjoy the tantrums. Better have my fixes! I do want to protest the engagement party as we will be serving meat, so need some followers and a shirt that says "note to the bride: wish i could be at your wedding"- turkey chick"

This is what I will be consuming in the next 36 hours:

Snacks:
nori strips
flax chips
dried fruit and nuts
green plus chocolate bars
cacao nibs
apple chips


Entertainment:
Ipods, one loaded with grey's anatomy and feast of love, other full of the same old music i listen everyday

Doodling Notebook:
more t-shirt cartoon ideas...travelling vegan on board series, Wheatgrass Junkie Adventures

Books:
Walking the Tiger, Peter Levine
http://www.amazon.co.uk/Waking-Tiger-Transform-Overwhelming-Experiences/dp/155643233X/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1242360571&sr=1-1

a room of her own, V. Woolf
http://www.amazon.co.uk/Room-Ones-Penguin-Modern-Classics/dp/0141183535/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1242360502&sr=1-2

A Silent Ark, Juliet Gellatley
http://www.amazon.co.uk/Silent-Ark-Chilling-Expose-Global/dp/0722531621


Sunday, May 10, 2009

Thai Pumpkin Soup with Lemongrass and Avocado! P.S:Excited!

I am excited! This is just a great hoooopy feeling that I love. Heart beats, nervousness, breathless, but bubbly, loving and warm. I think green juices have a magic on me. I feel like walking on the clouds. I am leaving in two days for Turkey. I am looking forward to seeing how I feel about "going back' this time. Before starting to think about day dreaming about vacation, I need to get this menu out. So, today is day 2. We have a group of 10 yoga teacher trainees and they have 28 days to eat breakfast and dinner at Organico.

Yesterday, they had tacos for dinner. Today, it's pumpkin soup with lemongrass and coconut, Thai slaw salad with rice noodles, steamed greens with ginger and lime and wholewheat bread.

Want some pumpkin soup?

1kg pumpkin, roasted

1 tbsp coconut oil

2 cloves of garlic, crushed

1 large onion, chopped

1 tsp cumin

1 tablespoon mustard seeds

1 tsp turmeric

1 tsp fresh ginger

2 tbsp (or more) chopped fresh lemongrass (thank you Maile)

1 L (4 cups) water or veggie stock

2 tbsp soy sauce

3 tsp lime juice

1 cup coconut milk

3 tbsp (or more) chopped cilantro

1 avocado, diced

Cut the pumpkin into chunky strips and roast with a dash of nutmeg, about 45 minutes, 350 degrees. Peel when cooled.
Heat oil in large pan, add garlic, onion, spices & lemon grass. Cook, stirring until onion is soft.
Add pumpkin, cook, stirring 1 minute.

Add water, coconut milk and soy sauce and continue cooking for another 10 minutes.

Blend until you get a creamy consistency. Top with avocado and cilantro. Decorate with pumpkin seeds!

Friday, May 08, 2009

Happy Full Moon!

Full Moon in Scorpio
Friday, May 8, 2009
9:01 PDT
18º 40'

©2009 Lisa Dale Miller
All rights reserved

This is the truth or dare Full Moon; a time to honor the transformative power of truth-telling and a very intense Full Moon to put into action (through ritual release) the goals you set at the New Moon in Taurus. Since this Full Moon falls in a water sign, releasing your intentions near a stream, river, lake, or ocean is particularly powerful. But before you let go, have one last look at your goals. Whom do they truly serve? What will they bring to the world? Since Scorpio demands depth and fearlessness, this last look will have to be brutally honest. If your goals require a change of mind, of heart, and/or of action, this is the night to successfully tackle fears that could impede the ability to fully embrace change. Scorpio seeks deep truth by peeling back layers of lies and half-truths—within us and without us. This is a Full Moon to see things as they truly are, not as you wish them to be. The intense planetary configurations on this Full Moon will be a great help in this regard.

The Moon in Scorpio (intuiting the complexity of reality) opposes Sun (motivation) in Taurus (providing for basic needs and security) and both are square the amazingly spiritual Jupiter (bliss)/Chiron (healing)/Neptune (transcendence) conjunction in Aquarius, the awakener. This T-square challenges us all to look deep within to see our own fears and know how our fear creates divisiveness and suffering for others. The thread of commonality transcends any difference we might imagine exists between any of us. The Moon in Scorpio invites us all to see beyond the veil of intolerance and hatred, and embrace true reconciliation between all nations and peoples in conflict. How many more deaths? How many more bombs? How many more shooting sprees? How much more hatred? How much more displaced anger? Pluto in Capricorn and Saturn in Virgo urge us all to meet this call for sanity with real action.

On a personal level this T-square sets the bar quite high for each of us. How much longer can you say it is someone else's responsibility or feel powerless to change the world? How much more can you blame others for your own condition? How many more times can you call yourself a victim without looking at your own ability to just let go and heal? Yes, Scorpio is tough love incarnate: see it as it is, not as you wish it to be, and then deal with it in as life-supporting a way as possible. We can each in every moment make the choice to be real and responsible for what we output to our loved ones and coworkers and community.

The Full Moon in Scorpio is a time to release attachment to old pain and arise like a phoenix from the ashes of burned off karma; freed from narcissistic self-obsession and ready to help others heal their own pain. Jupiter (relating), Chiron (wounding) and Neptune (transcendence) in Aquarius and Uranus in Pisces make this a particularly potent New Moon in Scorpio to wake up and out of victimology. Visualize yourself as a snake, shedding its dead skin to reveal gleaming new colors. The fresh-faced innocence of Venus and Mars in Aries will give you the energy to start anew.

The Full Moon in Scorpio is the night for full disclosure. It is the night to empower ourselves by naming our truth and shouting it from the rooftops. This is the Full Moon to celebrate our right to know. Though your merriment can take many forms, it should be done with others. This is the night to show up in a way that feels most honest for you, which sometimes implies revealing a secret or a fear. When we name our fear it loses its power over us. Make sure that if your agenda is to reveal, that you do it surrounded by a supportive, caring group of people. Don't go this road alone on this night. Sharing the pain and the joy of disclosure is the way of Scorpio. It may only take one person to uncover a secret, but it takes many people working together to break the spell of illusion and denial.

The impulsive emotionality of Venus and Mars in Aries might make it challenging to openly discuss polarizing issues that have been hard to tackle. Make an effort to get beyond scripted points of view to find the real issues that divide and separate. Mercury in open-minded Gemini should help us to see all sides of any issue. Commonality can be gained from truthfully admitting where both side's arguments lack focus and power.

Talking openly and honestly is challenging, but works magic for bridging gaps and bringing people together. Venus in Aries and Mercury in Gemini will lend lightheartedness to communications that could otherwise be quite intense. Try passing around a talking stick, allowing everyone to speak without interruption about whatever is on his or her mind, and in his or her heart.

Remember that on any Full Moon, the Moon is reflecting the light of the Sun in its opposite sign. The reflected light of the Taurus Sun is aglow with the love of and deep commitment to family values. Taurus likes hard work, and opening the lines of communication can be very hard, but ultimately very rewarding. This is especially true when issues of self-esteem (Taurus) lie at the heart of a family's problems with trust (Scorpio) issues.

This is also a great time for couples to tackle trust issues, especially if a secret has been coming between the two of you. The aforementioned configurations will make this an intense night to reveal secrets and deal with the consequences, but the planets in water signs will provide enough empathy and love to get through it. Scorpio can bring destruction or relief and most times a bit of both. Just know that no matter what happens change is essential for evolution and growth. Remember that radical change done appropriately can lead to more solid relationships built upon openness and unconditional love. At its core, Taurus/Scorpio wants to love. Yes, Taurus can be judgmental, boorish, and opinionated and Scorpio can be too intense and demanding; but both signs eventually come around through an overwhelming need to love and give care.

The Taurus/Scorpio polarity requires that we learn about our power and then discover how to deal with it effectively. Those of you who can't take all of this deep disclosure can do something a bit more fun. Join your friends for a game of truth or dare, or create a mystery game or a treasure hunt. It'll be a hard night to pull the wool over anyone's eyes, but it might be a lot of fun to try!

So meet the challenge of this Full Moon in Scorpio. Go deep enough to face the underbelly of your life, your goals, your community, your nation, and then arise to embrace your power to transform our violence-wary world!

©2009 Lisa Dale Miller
All rights reserved

Tuesday, May 05, 2009

Juicy Cleanse Recipes....Green Goddess

We are starting a 7 day juice cleanse program with Montezuma Yoga. So, you can come to Montezuma, enjoy our daily made fresh juices, (tons of it, like 4 litres), if you like a deeper cleanse do yoga, internal cleansing and therapeutic massage. I love doing these packages because  I get to learn so much about nutrition and healing and vegetables and most importantly greens. Did you know, one of the world's strongest animal, silver back gorilla, is a vegetarian. Where does he get his protein? Greens!!! There is so much more protein in greens, than we have been told for years, about veggies. Hardly anyone eats enough greens per day, like 2 pounds, but with juices and smoothies, you can get all the protein you need, plus the benefits of a cleanse.

Here is a great recipe for you to get inspired at home. Come to Costa Rica for more juicy recipes and the real experience!

Green Goddess

1 cucumber
1 cup of packed spinach, chard, lettuce, any other greens your heart desires...
2 apples
1 inch ginger
1/2 cup parsley
1 stalk of celery

Slurp slowly, also it helps to chew your green drinks....Enjoy!!! Warning, drinking green juices reduces your appetite for greasy, fried food and sweet cravings.

I also recommend reading Green for Life, for more information on eating your greens and getting younger and younger everyday!

When I don't eat....


I've been juice feasting for 7 days. It was a roller coaster of emotions and some physical pain, my biggest lesson being I have to be patient with myself- for everything, not being a good friend, a business owner, not a great daughter, not a great runner, not the best chef for sure. But after spending hours of thinking in this last 7 days, same story comes up. I am not good enough...It is just too tiring, and old story. I know the beauty lies in the acceptance. No matter what it is. Even that means, being a loner forever, i am not afraid. I feel pretty empowered, like making dreams come true, but it is not about achieving...It is about being. I want to start practicing this now, not tomorrow. I am grateful to be alive. I am dreaming of hanging out in the hammock, with a book in my hand. A breeze would not hurt either. I am off today!

Great article from Daily Om again....


May 5, 2009

Progressing With Patience
Doing The Best You Can

It isn't always easy to meet the expectations we hold ourselves to. We may find ourselves in a situation such as just finishing a relaxing yoga class or meditation retreat, a serene session of deep breathing, or listening to some calming, soul-stirring music, yet we have difficulty retaining our sense of peace. A long line at the store, slow-moving traffic, or another stressful situation can unnerve you and leave you wondering why the tranquility and spiritual equilibrium you cultivate is so quick to dissipate in the face of certain stressors. You may feel guilty and angry at yourself or even feel like a hypocrite for not being able to maintain control after practicing being centered. However, being patient with yourself will help you more in your soul's journey than frustration at your perceived lack of progress. Doing the best you can in your quest for spiritual growth is vastly more important than striving for perfection.

Just because you are devoted to following a spiritual path, attaining inner peace, or living a specific ideology doesn't mean you should expect to achieve perfection. When you approach your personal evolution mindfully, you can experience intense emotions such as anger without feeling that you have somehow failed. Simply by being aware of what you are experiencing and recognizing that your feelings are temporary, you have begun taking the necessary steps to regaining your internal balance. Accepting that difficult situations will arise from time to time and treating your reaction to them as if they are passing events rather than a part of who you are can help you move past them. Practicing this form of acceptance and paying attention to your reactions in order to learn from them will make it easier for you to return to your center more quickly in the future.

Since your experiences won't be similar to others' and your behavior will be shaped by those experiences, you may never stop reacting strongly to the challenging situations you encounter. Even if you are able to do nothing more than acknowledge what you are feeling and that there is little you can do to affect your current circumstances, in time you'll alter your reaction to such circumstances. You can learn gradually to let negative thoughts come into your mind, recognize them, and then let them go. You may never reach a place of perfect peace, but you'll find serenity in having done your best.

Thursday, April 30, 2009

Hurt! Where does this come from?

Hurt, feeling hurt, dealing with hurt. I suffer from this constant feeling of hurt. It hits me quite frequently, from all directions. Very close friends to complete strangers even dogs. I still feel hurt and have tears in my eyes that Prema left and never looked back. I give in to the feeling of being hurt and lay in its power, feeling helpless, alone and not understood. Addicted to the drama of course, I am directing the best soap opera ever.  Best part is blaming others for "my" feeling of not so great. All the time wasting energy on "How could she do that? I am sooo sad....I don't deserve that at all... Why? why? why? " The evil powers of the universe, working against me..Uffff, life can be tough even in paradise, but it is in these moments we realize what it feels like to be living and discover the beauty of letting go....of me, myself, my life, the toxitiy around me... It never existed anyway...



This article is today from Daily OM, is very well said. I hardly recommend reading it while listening Hurt, from Johnny Cash! Repeat mode of course!





April 30, 2009

Healing with Hurt
Using Your Pain To Help Others

Pain is a fact of being and one that permeates all of our lives to some degree. Since the hurt we feel may be a part of the experiences that have touched us most deeply, we are often loathe to let it go. It is frequently easier to keep our pain at our sides, where it acts as a shield that shelters us from others and gives us an identity—that of victim—from which we can draw bitter strength. However, pain's universality can also empower us to use our hurt to help others heal. Since no pain is any greater or more profound than any other, what you feel can give you the ability to help bring about the recovery of individuals whose hurts are both similar to and vastly different from your own. You can channel your pain into transformative and healing love that aids you in helping individuals on a one-to-one basis and spreading a tide of curative energy throughout the world.

The capacity to heal others evolves naturally within those who are ready to disassociate themselves from their identity as victims. In fact, the simple decision to put aside the pain we have carried is what grants us the strength to redeem that pain through service. There are many ways to use the hurt you feel to help others. Your pain gives you a unique insight into the minds of people who have experienced trauma and heartache. You can draw from the wellspring of strength that allowed you to emerge on the other side of a painful experience and pass that strength to individuals still suffering from their wounds. You may be able to council individuals in need by showing them the coping methods that have helped you survive or simply by offering sympathy. A kinship can develop that allows you to relate more closely with those you are trying to aid and comfort.

Helping others can be a restorative experience that makes your own heart grow stronger. In channeling your pain into compassionate service and watching others successfully recover, you may feel a sense of euphoria that leads to increased feelings of self-worth and optimism. Your courageous decision to reach out to others can be the best way to declare to yourself and the world that your pain didn't defeat you, and in fact it helped you heal.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Rice Paper Rolls...still

More on rice paper rolls, because i eat them everyday and still love them so much. Please try this home, it is super easy and fun to eat with dripping avocados and sweet thai sauce.

Here are some more pictures on how we make them. The trick is to cover them tight with extra chard or spinach. Then roll super carefully and eat within an hour or so, max. Otherwise they get soggy and not the same thing...Deliciously healthy and crunchy.

Recipe here...

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Groovy Grasshopper!

I hate wheat grass juice. I love drinking it, i love what it does to my body, but still I can't get over the taste and I don't like it. We have the shots in the cafe and it is pretty popular. People who know about wheat grass, are happy to get it here and I am amazed to see some people coming back for it. Happy, healthy people or the hangover surfer dudes. Shots are the easiest way to get an ounce of wheat grass to your body, but you need a special juicer.  However, i got this new recipe from Honey, the amazing lady who brings our organic produce and she is also a midwife. She says she drank this grasshopper everyday when she was pregnant. Twice.

1 cup of fresh wheat grass
2 cups of water
2 cups of pineapple
1/2 cups of loose fresh mint

add some agave if you like it sweeter...

Blend the wheat grass with water, strain. Add the pineapple and the mint. Blend again. Pour and start hopping!  Super easy, super sexy!

Now, about wheat grass and why it is good for you:

Dr. Ann Wigmore brought wheatgrass juice into the mainstream many years ago and it is one of the foundations to her healing program. According to 'The Wheatgrass Book' by Ann Wigmore:

Increases red blood-cell count and lowers blood pressure. It cleanses the blood, organs and gastrointestinal tract of debris. Wheatgrass also stimulates metabolism and the body's enzyme systems by enriching the blood. It also aids in reducing blood pressure by dilating the blood pathways throughout the body.

Stimulates the thyroid gland, correcting obesity, indigestion, and a host of other complaints.

Restores alkalinity to the blood. The juice's abundance of alkaline minerals helps reduce over-acidity in the blood.

Is a powerful detoxifier, and liver and blood protector. The enzymes and amino acids found in wheatgrass can protect us from carcinogens like no other food or medicine. It strengthens our cells, detoxifies the liver and bloodstream, and chemically neutralizes environmental pollutants.

Has remarkable similarity to our own blood. Wheatgrass juice is 70% chlorophyll. The second important nutritional aspect of chlorophyll is its remarkable similarity to hemoglobin, the compound that carries oxygen in the blood….when the "blood" of plants is absorbed in humans it is transformed into human blood, which transports nutrients to every cell of the body.

Sweetens the breath and firms up and tightens gums. Just gargle with the juice.

Is a beauty treatment that slows down the aging process when the juice is consumed. Wheatgrass will cleanse your blood and help rejuvenate aging cells, slowing the aging process way down, making you feel more alive right away. It will help tighten loose and sagging skin.

Why are minerals important?

Wheatgrass juice is one of the best sources of minerals. According to natural health expert Dr. John Whitman Ray:

* According to Senate Document No. 264, the official publication, 99 percent of American people are deficient in minerals, and a marked deficiency in any one of the more important minerals actually results in disease.

* The body is equipped to chelate only a small amount of some inorganic elements from nature. Therefore, the body requires the minerals to come from plants in a chelated form that the minerals may be properly assimilated and utilized. The efficiency of each mineral is enhanced by balanced amounts of the others.

* All nutrients such as vitamins, proteins, enzymes, amino acids, carbohydrates, fats, sugars, oils, etc. require minerals for activity. All bodily processes depend upon the action of minerals.

* Trace chelated minerals are more important in nutrition than vitamins. Vitamins can be synthesized by living matter, minerals cannot.

* Vitamins are required for every biochemical activity of the body. Vitamins cannot function unless minerals are present.

* Minerals are the catalysts that make enzyme functions possible. Chelated minerals combine with enzymes into an alkaline detoxifying agent which neutralizes the acid metabolic by-products of the cells and other toxic conditions within the body and prepares them for elimination.

* Hormonal secretion of glands is dependent upon mineral stimulation.

* The acid-alkaline balance(pH) of the tissue fluid is controlled by minerals.

* All elements work together as a collective whole. If there is a shortage of just one mineral, the balance of the entire bodily activity can be thrown awry. A deficiency of one mineral may disrupt the entire chain of life, rendering other nutrients either useless or inefficient.




Monday, April 20, 2009

wonderful information on superfoods...

http://www.dailyjuice.org/blogs/nutrition

Slurpy Miso Soup!

Here is the world's easiest and tastiest miso soup recipe, with amazing avocados and soba noodles! Miso has protein (2grs for 25 calories), vitamin B12, zinc, copper and manganese giving you tons of energy to play!

4 cups of water
1/2 cups of wild seaweed, wakame, arame, hijiki, dry
2 shitake mushrooms, (optional)
1/2 tablespoon fresh ginger, sliced into thin matchsticks
2 tablespoons of yellow miso
1/2 block of tofu, cubed and marinated in soy sauce for 10 minutes or more if you want
Soba noodles
1/2 avocado, cut into cubes
2 tablespoons of soy sauce or Bragg's Liquid Aminos
sesame seeds, for decoration
optional, green onions


Boil the water in a pot and add the ginger, seaweed, mushrooms and a squirt of soy sauce or Bragg's Liquid Aminos.  Add the soba noodles and cook for another 6 minutes, until the noodles are soft. Turn off the stove and stir in the miso. Do not boil the miso soup as it will kill the enzymes. Taste and add more soy sauce if you like.

Sprinkle the sesame seeds, avocados and the green onions. Listo!!! All you need is a friend or two to share the pot and slurp away!











Saturday, April 18, 2009

killer tofu!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sEJhZN4WJOo

chunky grumpy rolls-long post!

Feeling full and happy. Ahhh, pura vida, the beauty of tasting amazing, fresh, organic food that I got to eat in my own restaurant. Does that sound snobby? I guess a little. but hey I am working long hours, i need to eat well. Finally I figured out a way to make super easy, super tasty, super filling rice paper rolls...

Chunky because they are loaded...Carrots, beets, sprouts, avocado, 3 rice paper rolls, spinach, lettuce, mint, cilantro..These are gigantic, burrito size!

Grumpy because it is so delicious, can't have enough...but then even if you have two, you get full and it is so tasty you want more but don't have any more space in your stomach, so you have to be patient till you get hungry again..

This recipe has been a work in process since 2 years. When Anna from Australia was working at Organico, she made the Vietnamese rolls for us but they were cumbersome. Too much prep work with ingredients we don't use for other dishes so there was always waste. But we sold them a lot and loved to eat the left overs, even after two days. With more work piling up, we retired the recipe.

Last week, Igor from Montreal showed up, a vegan, raw chef and our obsessive food conversation lead to a spontaneous food demo class and we made sushi and rolls. For the rice paper rolls he used carrots, beets, spinach, sprouts, all the ingredients we have ready for almost every dish on the menu. Except for the veggie pate with sunflower seeds that needed some soaking time, tons of veggies, spices, not too difficult but another extra item on the menu...i loved the rolls but not got the clarity to go ahead for a new menu item. Though he taught us the trick to make really stable rolls, using 3 rounds lined up like a Venn diagram and it is so much easier to fill it with tons of veggies and tuck the ends and roll with ease. A trick I have never knew before, makes such a difference. Check out some photos...

Then, two days ago, i searched for raw humus recipes totally unrelated, because I am tired of eating cooked food, hours wasted on energy, taking tons of enzymes, loads of it, to off-set the dead food and trying to take care of myself. So, I found a great recipe with zucchini...It is the same exact humus recipe we use at the cafe, made with zucchini instead o garbanzo beans. I made it today but since zucchini is very liquid, the humus turned out way too wet. Inspired from Igor's veggie pate, I added a cup of sunflower seeds, and it was perfect!

So, here it is....best rolls ever...

3 rice-paper rolls, dipped into hot water for 30 seconds and lined up in a Venn Diagram.

lettuce
shredded carrots, beets
cilantro, mint
raw hummus made with extra cup of sunflower seeds, 1 cup of parsley and 1 cup of spinach (use 3 tablespoons of humus for one roll)
sprouts
avocado
spinach

Pile up all the ingredients in the order above and roll firmly. Serve with your favorite dressing or Thai sweet and chili sauce.






Saturday, April 11, 2009

Making Chocolate with Keith

I metKeith 3 years ago when I first came to Montezuma for vacation. He is one of the few people who experienced my move to Costa Rica from the first day, watching Organico and me grow year after year. This week he was here again for a yoga retreat and it was really sentimental to share all the memories and also listen to his beautiful, inspiring real yogi wisdom. It makes all the bad days worth while when there is that one connection that stays forever and grows even without seeing each other...This must be cosmic love.

He invited his yoga group to my chocolate making class and i had one of the best times of my life last night. A full house, total Martha Stewart moment for me.

We tried 5 different flavors, basil, matcha-almond, coconut-curry-ginger, coffee-cardamom-cacao nibs, goji-cacao-spirulina. Then we rated all the flavors and the coffee one was the most popular, followed by coconut and matcha. I love doing these classes, it is so much fun to experiment, create and play with ingredients and share the love with others.

Here is the recipe and my gratitude to Keith, a beautiful angel in my life. I love you!

Fairy Chocolate Bars (70% Dark Chocolate)


1 cup of cacao powder

1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 cup cacao butter, melted
1/2 cup coconut milk
1/4+1/8 cups of agave nectar If you don't have agave, substitute with maple syrup or honey
2 tablespoon of lecitin
pinch of salt

Blend it all in a high power blender and divide in 5 bowls to experiment with different flavors.

Basil:
Add 1 tablespoon of chopped basil

Coconut-Curry
Add 2 tablespoons of shredded coconut, 2 tablespoons of coconut milk and 2 tsp of curry powder

optional: 2 tsp of candied ginger

Coffee-Cardamom-Cacao Nibs
1 tablespoon of coffee and cacao nibs
1 tsp of cardamom

Goji-Cacao-Spirulina
Add 1 tablespoon of goji and cacao nibs and 1 tsp of spirulina

Matcha-Almond
2 tsp of matcha powder
2 tablespoons of coconut milk
2 tablespoons of toasted almonds

Once you blend your flavors, wrap them on plastic or use molds and refrigerate over night.

And if you are in San Francisco, go to Keith's class at Laughing Lotus!

Sunday, April 05, 2009

pizza blues...

maybe it is only me but i feel really yucky sucky and not inspired and almost sad after having a delicious pizza...maybe the yeast or the gluten or the fact that I ate it really late, is strangely making me question why I don't listen to my body...it also bothers me why I am so sensitive but I will just accept that as part of me, at least now and deal with the food part. It is lonely to be a vegetarian but at the same time it allows me to have real, deep experience with myself and I like that vegan wanna be, lonely girl:)

I am craving a cleanse but damn scared about commitments and others around me. I promised Ian to start a 30 day raw feast, i think I will do it. Why wouldn't I want to feel happy? Simply because it is harder to be happy than sad and the heavyess of being the victim, the "pitty me now please" syndrome...I don't think so.

Ian is serious about blogging his experience...Here....

I am going to try it, it will be fun....I want it to be fun! this is silly but funny!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fv2Ba0-w7-o


Thursday, April 02, 2009

happy chocolate?

I am thinking about chocolate these days..having adult conversations around the subject with friends and talking openly about our love for chocolate. I don't know where all this is going, but I am playing with the idea of making chocolate. So far, we have been testing it in my classes, and people love it, but at the same time I do have a long history of loving and abusing chocolate, all the way to being addicted to it. I also know a lot of friends, especially women, who can't do without chocolate. Is this as bad as any addiction? Sure, especially if you are obsessing over it...Your mind time, if it is spent worrying, planning, thinking, searching, getting frustrated, being happy and all about chocolate, yes it is not fun but you can't stop it, there it is...Being under the influence... Personally, I am totally over the chocoholic days, I have maybe 4 chocolate bars in the fridge, untouched for over 3 months, a case of chocolate greens bars waiting to be packed for picnics and sort...but I am not sure if going back and making chocolate will contribute to other's addictions...Of course not everybody abuses chocolate, so maybe I am just over analyzing this, again, but it sounds like a dangerous love...I don't want to contribute to the weakness of others, i know how hard it would be, bu if i make healthy good chocolate and maybe sneak some greens of some sort, add some inspiring quotes or fun cartoons to the packaging, that might be fun. Afterall, life should be all about fun. We spend too much time worrying and stressing over  So, i guess I know what I want to do, tasty chocolate that is good for you and presented in a fun, inspiring way. It is organic, it is vegan, it is full of hmmm what would be a mood enchancer, happy chocolate?  Will be back on this subject with more ideas, i find this cartoon really funny!

http://www.everydaypeoplecartoons.com/topic/inner%20self