Thursday, February 26, 2009

Tricity Green Drinks Group meeting

A few weeks ago a neighbourhood friend had us over for dinner and we got talking about raw and living foods. A couple days after that I get a message introducing me to Peter...he commutes with this neighbour of ours. He is also a vegetarian...vegan...and thinking about raw. He's also a very strong advocate and activist on the environmental front. He invited me to join the social this past Wednesday.

It was really great to sit in a room with many like-minded people. I had great conversations with a number of the people who attended. The environment was always something I considered, but not something I really went out of my way to protect...until I found raw and living foods. I am much more aware of situations around the globe, especially ones pertaining to my food sources. When you start to eat this way, lots of new ideas and information make their way into your psyche.

I'm now asking myself, "What have I done for the environment lately?" "What can I do for the environment?" "How can I know more about my food sources?" I also know another neighbour who would be interested in talking with this group and I'm definitely going to get him involved! I'm also going to serve a Green Drink at a future get together. I was actually surprised that no one showed up with a "green drink" to a meeting with such a name?!

I want to sponge up all they have to say and start to get involved locally with the environment and somehow help make things better so that my own children can inherit a world that's not on the brink of excinction.

What have you done for the environment lately? How much do you know about your food sources? Take 15 min. to see what you can do to make our earth a happier and healthier place. If we take small steps, it's amazing where it can take us if we're on the right path!

In Green Goodness,


Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Blessed is this life

Hey there,

Jiving to a great tune by Brett Dennen. It's called Blessed. He is my new favourite singer! I've listened to a number of his songs over the last week or so (thanks to Angela Stokes mentioning him in her blog!) and have really enjoyed all the songs I've heard. You can listen to Blessed as well, enjoy!

He's also playing at Richards on Richards on March 12th. Check out info and tickets here. I know I want to go!

Rumour has it that Great Big Sea is coming out to the West Coast again. They have only released a Victoria date, but I'm holding my breath that they'll also be coming to Vancouver as well! Why come all this way and not do more venues!?  Seems they missed Victoria when they were here in December...

Fat Tuesday today, thinking I may give up something for the Lent season.  I was brought up Catholic, and although I am not practicing any particular religion, I have never felt more spiritual since taking up raw and living foods.  I will practice Lent this year as I feel that it is good to show yourself some self discipline.  I'll update when I have figured out just what I'm going to do for sure.  I still have a few hours to think about it.

What is something that you enjoy that you would be willing to give up for 40 days?  Tell me about it...

Eat Raw, Live Well.


Sunday, February 22, 2009

Decluttering with kids

I've been trying to go through our stuff recently. It seems that more comes in than goes out but there's a constant flow in the house of "things" and "goods". Andrew's birthday is coming and it's time to do another toy overhaul. My kids have had more toys in their short years than I had in a lifetime, if they only knew.

I used to get the kids to choose items to give away and keep. Well, the keep pile was always SO large and the give away wasn't so big. They have gotten better over the years, but...what I found works best is for them to choose what they definitely want to KEEP. They get a box, fill it as full as possible of things they want to keep for sure and the rest is fair game for me to give away.

It works like a charm. We got rid of a lot of stuff tonight and we'll keep getting more out of the house. The Gaby Davis Foundation...helps families affected by childhood cancer will be taking donations as of April so now I just have to store them until that time...maybe in the carport, as there's very little room around here!

Off to box some up!

How do you help your children let go of things that they no longer need? How do YOU do this?

Here's hoping you have a smoothie start to the week! Here's a recipe for a great smoothie! The amounts are completely up to you! Here's what I do:

Frozen strawberries
Frozen cut up banana
Hemp seeds

Blend until smooth. It's more like a milkshake and it's a meal all on its own. I usually cannot mix my fruit with nuts and seeds, but this one agrees with me no problem. Play with the amounts each time you make it until you have your perfect smoothie shake.

It's my take on the amazing Strawberry Cloud from Gorilla Food on Richards St. in Vancouver. Aaron has great food, definitely check his place out if you're in town.

Eat Raw, Live Well
ps - three blogs in one day, it's amazing what I can accomplish when I set my mind to it. I have so many topics, I don't know how I'll get through them all!


I saw in the Thrifty's flyer that they had organic kumquat. I have never tried them so went to purchase some. It was amazing, I didn't realize just how many types of organic produce that Thrifty's keeps stocked. I was in raw fruit and veg heaven! So I went around and picked out three new fruits. I'm going to do the same for fruitful Friday at school next time. We've gotten away from that this last couple of months so it will be fun to start it up again with all sorts of different fruits available.

Unfortunately there were no kumquats. I will have to go back to get them, but I am sure excited that I have somewhere new to go and get organic produce!

If you live near a Thrifty's go check them out.

Short and sweet.
Eat Raw, Live Well

Kids not feeling well

This last week I've been caring for sick kids, knowing that it's been birthday party season here, it was no surprise when my kids got sick. I like them to make their own choices when out and about. I do not want to force the raw food lifestyle I live onto them, especially since my husband is not anywhere near the raw realm. I feed them as wholesome a diet while at home and then when they are out with friends, they choose what they will eat. Sometimes they make good choices, sometimes they do not, but they are starting to make the connection...hey, I ate a lot of junk food (which doesn't have to be much to affect them) at that party and I'm not feeling well now. Or they will have a couple of parties in one weekend, and then come down with a cold that week. My daughter experienced an upset tummy last weekend at a party and then both kids got a fever and a slight cold this son on Sunday night, my daughter on Thursday night.

Fevers are not common in this household. We probably haven't had one here for at least two years. When they do get one, it is usually mild, as these ones were. I am not a big believer in throwing medication into them at the first sign of a fever, because fever is the body's way of fighting the invaders. When you put medicine into them at the first sign, you are not allowing the body to take its natural course. They both came down with their fevers in the early morning hours, and when they are hot, they wake up. We gave them lots of water, and cuddles and took some clothing off to regulate the body's temperature.

I always sleep with the kids when they have a fever, so I can keep a close eye on things. If it gets uncomfortably high then sometimes we will medicate. This was not the case this week. They had their fevers, that caused them to slow down, drink lots and rest. When you medicate, the kids act like they don't have a fever for a few hours (6 to 8 depending on the medication given). They run around, expending valuable energy and the body loses it's rest time to heal. So my kids were couch potatoes for two days, it was actually good for them to slow down for a bit. They were also not hungry at all. Instinct tells them not to eat, because digestion takes away from the healing as well. So often again, in our society we're so concerned that if our kids aren't eating they'll starve, and won't get the nutrition they need. So often I hear my mother in law saying to the kids you have to eat so you have energy...forcing them to eat in the mornings. My daughter isn't a big morning eater, where as my son loves to eat in the morning. My daughter's appetite picks up around noon and then she makes up for it as the day goes along. She usually just has fruit for breakfast, and a light snack at school.

When in fact, I feel best on my runs when I haven't eaten beforehand as all my energy can go into running instead of digesting and running. Most people who exercise heavily will agree that they feel sick if they try to exert themselves after a big meal.

So often in our society we rush from this activity to the next, worried that we want to get our money's worth, or that our kids will miss out on some opportunity. So many people send their kids to school when they are quite sick for many reasons, maybe some don't want to take time off of work to take care of their child, maybe they don't want to deal with a cranky, tired, sick child. Maybe the parents too are sick. This will only lengthen the illness and possibly make it something worse. So far everyone I know who had kids with this same fever and cold have told me to watch out as it goes into a very bad chest cough.

When my kids are sick, they have a very strict meal plan, and they are good about it because they know it works. There is no refined sugar allowed. They must eat whole foods. For example, sprouted grain bread, steel cut oatmeal, and of course plenty of fruits and vegetables. We stay clear of most meat (unless my hubby has cooked) and refined grains. That's the way it should be all the time, really!! They drink lots and lots of water and fresh juices, and get lots of rest and sleep. It's been working for us and hopefully some of this will work for you as well.

Of course none of this is meant to diagnose or take the place of a doctor's or health practitioner's advice. It is meant as a way for me to tell you what works for us. That's how we learn. Don't take my word for it, research it for yourself, try things out and see what works for you.

Do you listen to your body? Do you try to eat a cleaner diet when you're sick? Try it out the next time you feel something coming on. Juice for a day, eat fruit and veg and greens for a few days, eat lightly. See how it works for you and let me know!

In the meantime, Eat Raw, Live Well.

ps. find me on twitter @thriveonlive! I'm still working on that aspect of my computer knowledge. It's fun as more and more people start to follow! In joy! Me.

Monday, February 9, 2009

Fruit and Veggie Deliveries

It's been quiet around here this last few weeks...I've gone into a more introspective mode and haven't been active with my blogging. Time to get back to writing.

Our Fruit and Vegetable program at the school is going along extremely well. I am so satisfied with how things are running and the positive feedback is incredible.

We get our deliveries on a Monday and they are stored until my class has an opportunity to sort and deliver the bins to each division. We practice proper hand washing and the students sort through the produce and then deliver the bins to each classroom. On a delivery day (serving one) we do this in the early afternoon - when we would usually be silent reading - and then at the end of the day after finishing our last block and planners the students go to pick up the bins.

We have a pair of students who are responsible for getting to each of the non-enrolling teachers and other staff in the school. They go around for about 20 min. offering the food to this part of the staff and the deliveries are so appreciated!

Our first delivery was organic apples. They were the most amazing tasting apples ever! The students were begging for extras, not only in my class but in others too. It was so incredible to see the students working and munching on apples. This is a pretty regular occurrence in my classroom as the students are allowed to eat fruit and veggies anytime, but for other teachers they are amazed at how much the students are enjoying the food. Perhaps they too will eventually allow students to eat whole fruit and veg anytime!

This week the delivery was sugar snap peas. I wasn't sure how this would go over, a few of my students were making "yuck" faces when they heard what was coming their way. Delivery was very simple, one large bag per class with some paper towels (to use as plates) and the teacher in each class was asked to give it out to their class, or choose a student to do so...of course they were to wash hands properly before doing so.

Well, we were glad we had so much extra! The students were supposed to have about 4 to 6 pods each, but ended up with about 8 to 10 each and they were happy about that. They were so fresh, and delicious...I know I had my fair share too! Even those who had balked at eating them were partaking in this frenzy!

My students are getting excellent experience by being the delivery people and they are constantly asking "When is the next delivery day?" and "What's in the delivery next time?" They are truly invested in this program and it's great.

There has been a great deal of positive comments regarding the program. Teachers are excited to see students bartering over the last of the produce, helping around the classroom to get any extras that might be left over. The produce is so fresh, the students can't believe how good it tastes. One comment today was a complaint that they wish they had a bag each of the sugar snap peas! Now that's a lot of peas.

A parent spoke to the principal about how he really appreciated that students were being exposed to this type of food at school and that he thought it was great that students were allowed to eat whole fruits and vegetables in the classroom at any time (this is a parent from my class). He said that by offering some foods in the classroom to his child that his son was trying foods he'd never eat at home. Positive peer pressure at its best!

Anyhow, that's how things are looking in my world at the moment.

Oh, hurt my back terribly while ice skating on Friday (It's Monday today) and it was its worst yesterday. I hadn't been 100% raw in my eating for about a week, so tried that today to see if some energy could be spent on healing the back rather than on digestion...and tonight is the best I have felt in three days. I'm going to continue this through for a few days and see if I can't get back to running by Thursday. Bootcamp next Monday. I miss the workouts! As the old saying goes, you don't realize how much you use something until it's not working properly. It's been a long time since I've been in this much pain - well, about two months ago with the tonail injury!! But a long time before that. I don't believe in medicating it, which just masks the issue and doesn't allow my body to rest in order to heal. So I'm taking it easy - relatively - and with a massage tomorrow and more rest I'll be back exercising in no time.

Is there anything you can do to improve your diet? Exercise regime? Take 15 min. today and write about something you'd like to improve, then talk to someone about it...studies prove that when we share our plans with someone else, it makes us accountable for our actions, and we are more likely to follow through.

In the meantime,

Eat Raw, Live Well.