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Month: March 2017

#FridayFood – Donuts

#FridayFood – Donuts

It’s (almost) the weekend.

Time to get your party face on. Okay. Maybe not for a few hours. But in the meantime to get you in the weekend mood, let’s talk food porn. For me, that’s basically something homemade or donuts.

 

In the weeks to come, I’ll use #FridayFood posts to share recipes or awesome food I ate with you.

So today, I want to talk about donuts. My favorite donut of all time is a vanilla cake donut with vanilla glaze sprinkled with peanuts. I got them at Spudnuts in Pasco, Washington as a kid. Now, I get them locally at Countryside Donut House in Kirkland. If you make it to Countryside, try the maple bar, too. It is the best I’ve ever found. Another favorite of mine is Top Pot Doughnuts. Their pink sprinkle doughnut inspired my daily sketch a few months back.

My five-minute sketch
Two Miles at a Time

Two Miles at a Time

On your mark! Get set! Go!

Running. It works wonders for me. Why? Running two miles a day is free and gives me so much:

  • A good night’s sleep
  • Alleviates my depression and anxiety
  • Burns calories (so I don’t have to fuss over treats)
  • Boosts my mood
  • Helps me concentrate at work
  • Lowers my blood pressure

It’s magic. But, only a few years ago I couldn’t take a step without burning pain in my feet and knees. I didn’t know then, but I had a bone infection due to a poorly done root canal. Yikes. Under stress to finish my first book and unable to exercise in any way, I gained weight. Lots and lots. Too much for my little frame. I suffered:

  • Headaches
  • High blood pressure
  • Anxiety and depression
  • Poor sleep
  • Stomach problems
  • Lack of concentration

A new dentist discovered my infection and after two rounds of antibiotics, my bones healed. Technically, I was able to run again, but I couldn’t even manage to walk at a steady pace for more than a few minutes. Each day, grateful to have pain-free feet, I pushed a tiny bit more. I walked a little longer, a tad faster, until I was finally able to jog. And then, after a few months, I ran.

And I’ve never looked back.

I don’t think my genetics (Black Sea Germans) were meant to be marathoners, but I enjoy 2.5 miles, sometimes three. At nearly fifty, I stretch before and after my runs to prevent shin splints. And I write my miles on a calendar, a calendar that tracks my monthly goal. My goal for the month varies. Sometimes I aim to move everyday – walk or run or lift weights. Other months, I set a mileage goal.

Experts agree that exercise has fantastic benefits.

Teens that run 30 minutes a week for three weeks in a row saw a reduction in anxiety and depression and better sleep patterns.

This comes from a study found in Runner’s World. For us older people, the effect is similar. We simply need to exercise more days of the week.

Another study showed that running cut the risk of having cancer in half!

And running increases hearing! Yep. Both facts come from this article in the Telegraph.

So, if you’re willing to feel the burn in your lungs for the first couple attempts, I want to encourage you to get out there and move! 🙂 And then share your experience with us here!

Happy running!

 

Sunny Side Up!

Sunny Side Up!

Dreary Seattle Winter 🙁

It was a long cold rainy winter in Seattle, the worst I’ve seen in my thirty years here.

But we survived.

  • The election
  • The aftermath
  • Free Speech on life support
  • The addiction to news cycles
  • Social media squalls
  • Flu season.
  • The mad slough of friends and family on Facebook and Twitter and Instagram.

Is is over yet?

Well, my calendar says it is spring. And in a few days we begin a fresh month. It’s another chance to sweep away residual fear and worry and hate. Another opportunity to be our best selves and love others with an unjaded heart.

Last week, I was skimming Hacker News and found an article about ritual smudging or saging. If you’re unfamiliar with this, it is something I do regularly in my house – usually when my husband goes out of town because he doesn’t love the residual scent.

It is derived from Native American roots, and is a spiritual ‘house cleaning’ of sorts.

Here’s how it’s done:

  • First, locate a bundle of dried sage, a bird feather (to fan smoke) and a large shell
  • Light the sage bundle
  • Walk through each space in your home
  • As you walk, ask  God (or the Universe) to clear out dark energy and invite light, positive energy  inside your home. I pray and walk slowly from room to room
  • Sometimes the sage bundle extinguishes. Stop and relight the bundle and remain in that space until the smoke clears the energy.
  • “God, fill this house with your love and light.” That is something I say as I walk the house, but you will find your own words.
  • When you’ve saged your home, respectfully empty the shell of ashes outside and say a thank you to God or the Universe.

My family used to (okay, STILL) roll their eyes at me for saging. But this article I found justifies the ancient ritual. It has been proven that herbal smoke has powerful antibacterial properties. Sage smoke cleans the air and keeps it clean for days. Wow, right? Here’s the article.

After I post this blog, I am going to sage my home. I will start this new season with a clean house and spirit. I will let go of any darkness and make room for something better. Because any day is a good day for a fresh start.

Sending you all love and light.