Summer Fun: Make Someone Laugh

What is it about making a baby laugh that gives us such pleasure?

Make someone laugh today.  That’s called spreading the gift of light and love.

 

Come visit me at JaniceWoody.com for more on wellness and graceful aging.

Here’s to laughing with you and your Lifetime Health!

Summer Fun: Summer Fruits and Veggies

Don’t you just love this time of year?  All the summer fruits and veggies are here in North America.  All the sweet berries, melons and stone fruits are ripe and ready to eat.  Now is the time to eat them but also the time to think ahead and store some of these jewels for winter.  If you don’t know how to can fruits and veggies don’t feel bad.  In this fast food era, it’s almost a dying art.  But we do have some other options for storing our summer harvests like freezing and freeze drying.  These will at least allow you to enjoy your summer harvest late into the winter months.

One of the fruits I love most is watermelon.  If you’re craving it right now, there could be a lot of reasons for that.  Watermelon is one of the most nutritious foods we have available and not just the flesh but also the seeds.  One small slice can give you 3 mg of iron. Helpful if you have a tendency toward anemia.  

Watermelon seeds include fatty acids, essential proteins and a lot of minerals. These types of seeds are full of vitamin B just like thiamine, niacin, foliate and minerals like magnesium, potassium, manganese, iron, zinc, phosphorus and copper.  Watermelon seeds contain dietary fiber essential for the normal operation of the digestive tract, that help in case of intestinal parasites, as well as in the treatment of inflammation in the body.  Watermelon seeds contain citrulline a substance which acts as a bio marker of intestinal function.  Citrulline is key in the urinary tract to help your body process ammonia into urea.  Because of this, watermelon seeds have been useful in treating diseases of the kidneys and urinary tract.  It’s also been reported to help people suffering with hepatitis, arteriosclerosis, hypertension, angina and erectile dysfunction.

We’re talking about the big black seeds you used to be able to find in the fruit.  Unfortunately, there has been so much tampering with watermelon to produce seedless varieties, it’s not easy to find a regular watermelon.  Please let me know if you find one with black seeds.  It’s a gem and you should save those seeds and plant them.  I’m not sure if you can get all the benefits from using the albino seeds we see in the seedless varieties.  I will let you know.

What do you do if you have the real deal, a regular watermelon?  Take 20-30 seeds, grind them down and boil them for 15 minutes in a half gallon of water.   It is suggested that you drink this amount over the course of two days and stop.  You would skip the third day.   On the fourth day repeat the process being sure to skip the third day.  You can repeat this for several weeks to see a decrease or cessation of your symptoms.

Much of the Standard American Diet (SAD) is depleted in vitamins and minerals so it makes sense that using concentrated mixtures of seeds would dramatically boost your bodies levels of these vitamins and minerals.  And because they come directly from the plant, they are more easily integrated into your system and in my opinion more effective than synthetic vitamins made in a lab.

So, the next time you’re at a backyard barbeque bring watermelon to share and tell people to save the seeds.  So off I go on my quest for a regular watermelon.  It won’t be so hard to find peaches, plums and nectarines.  Hmmmm.  My mouth just waters thinking about summer fruit.  Hope you’re having a great summer or winter wherever you are and remember to watch the fat and eat four cups of fruits and veggies every day.

For more on wellness and graceful aging please visit me at JaniceWoody.com and here’s to your Lifetime Health!

Summer Fun – Laughing Medicine

Thank you to all who missed me last week.  I was not physically able to write about this topic then.  And as always I use my own advice so I’m laughing now.  Laughing at limitation, illness, insanity, cruelty, hypocrisy, my own daily trials.  That’s right.  I laugh at all of it.  It has no real power over me.  I decide what kind of life I’m going to live by what I value and what thoughts I choose to entertain.

We’ve had this discussion before so this is a refresher.  Our thoughts are critical to the quality of life we live and to aging gracefully.  Today I want to talk about another aspect of this that we often forget.  Many of us are aware of the fact that our thoughts can change how we physically feel.  You think about a lost love and suddenly you feel sad.  You think about someone who did you wrong and suddenly you’re angry.  This happens all day long but what about the other side of that coin?

Did you know that you can use your body to change your thoughts?  Just get up and go for a brisk walk or go to the gym for a cardio workout.  You will find your thoughts tending more toward health and wellness.  After a great workout, you don’t go down a bottle of scotch.  You want some clean refreshing water.  That’s one of the positive effects of physical activity.  

One of the best ways to change your thoughts is to laugh.  The physical activity of laughing changes the chemistry in your body sending more oxygen into your system.  A good belly laugh makes you feel lighter, freer and happy.  Oxygen is energy to the human body.  We breathe it in for life.  When we laugh we take in big gulps of oxygen and you can actually see the immediate effects in our countenance, our skin perks up, there’s more light in our eyes, we come alive!

When you’re laughing in the moment, there is no past. There is no future.  There is only now and you’re completely engulfed in it.  You could have been crying just before but now you’re in a completely different space.  Believe me there is so much to laugh about.  If you only realized your own innate power, you would laugh uncontrollably at the world and all its insanity.  When people are laughing with each other, they are much less likely to kill each other.  When people are laughing with each other, they are much less likely to say or do something cruel and inhuman to each other.  When people are laughing with each other, they feel the human connection.  When people are laughing with each other, they have more compassion for themselves and the other person.  When people are laughing with each other, there is a space to recognize love.

You may say, ‘Well I don’t have anything to laugh at right now.  My life is really a mess.’  Really?  That’s when you laugh the hardest.  You laugh at yourself for accepting such a low state of affairs.  You laugh at any people who are trying to beat you down.  Aren’t they ridiculous?  You are an eternal soul that they will never be able to destroy.  You must laugh at that and bring yourself up from the depths of despair.  What if your life is empty and boring?  Laugh at that.  Laugh at all the decisions you make every day that ensure you will continue down that path to emptiness and boredom.  Start laughing at the complete insanity of wandering through life without taking control.  If you’re bored, start thinking about other people and how you might help them.

Laugh long and hard.  Laugh until the tears flow.  My grandma used to laugh so hard that her belly giggled.  I laugh just thinking about that.  She lived a long fruitful life.  Laughing is one of the prime keys to graceful aging.  You should try it today.  For more on wellness and graceful aging, visit me at JaniceWoody.com and here’s to your Lifetime Health!

For Your Family:  Create a Garden

Gardens are the most magical places to behold.  Nature thrives without our help but when we work in conjunction with it, we get to create little bits of heaven in our environment.  Gardens signify our work with the divine, taking our knowledge and syncing up with what we do not completely understand, to create some beauty.  On your knees, hands in the dirt, planting a seed or placing a plant is inspirational.  It’s more than growing food.  The experience is grounding for us.  The very act of gardening connects us to the powerful energy of earth.

I can remember playing in my Grandma’s garden as a little girl.  It was the most amazing place to me.  I would play beside Grandma as she pulled weeds or picked the wonderful harvest.  I was constantly asking questions as children do.  “Grandma, what is that plant?  Why do the snakes come, Grandma?  What is that bug?”

Beautiful vegetables and fruit, roots and herbs, interesting bugs, sunshine, fresh air, the smell of earth, these all take me back to that time.  We ate directly from that garden.  Grandma would can some of the fruits and vegetables so we could enjoy them in the cold winter months.  Those are some of the best memories of my childhood and I’ve tried throughout my life to recreate that garden.

Sometimes it just isn’t possible to have that huge expansive beautiful garden, but what is possible?  You know that’s my favorite question.  It gets your mind working on possibilities.  It leads to being surrounded by containers of beautiful herbs, fruits and flowers, a little bit of magic on your window sill.  Think about how a patio container garden can yield a lot of food to feed your family.  If you can, concentrate on growing the things that are most expensive at the grocery store like greens and lettuce.  Plant an avocado tree if your climate will allow that.  Apple trees come in so many varieties that fit almost any climate.  If you just can’t do anything outdoors, try a hydroponic indoor garden.  You might be surprised at what you can grow.  Not to mention getting the benefit of better air quality.  People and plants were meant to live together.  The plants don’t need our help to grow but we definitely need their help to thrive. 

Do something nice for the plants in your life.  Nourish and water them.  Avoid spraying them with toxic pesticides.  You wouldn’t like it if they did that to you.  Plus, when you’re spraying that stuff, you breathe a little of it.  Bad news for the lungs and the rest of you.  Both you and the plant are choking on the bad air.  Eventually, all that stuff winds up in your kidneys and your liver and they don’t want it either.

What kind of garden will you create?  One plant on the window sill is a start.  It will look lonely and therefore attract more plants.  Before you know it, you have a garden.  Maybe one day I will manage to recreate my Grandma’s garden.  Until then, here’s to your Lifetime Health!  Come visit me at JaniceWoody.com for more on wellness and graceful aging.

For Your Family: Foster Expansion

If you have family, when is the last time you sat down to have a frank discussion about finances, your money, and what you value?

So many times families fail to have these conversations and the result is a group of people living in a dream world.  They conjure up fantasies about going on extravagant vacations but have no real financial stability to support those fantasies.  Instead of explaining that Disney World is not in our price range, we pull out the credit cards or go get new ones and make it happen.  We operate as though the money to pay for it will just materialize out of thin air.  In my world, that only happens for bankers.  They are the only ones creating money out of thin air.  For our families, most of us are working jobs and trading our time for money.  

Having those frank discussions about finances, money and what you value are what’s needed to get to the place where you can go on the vacation without tying a debt noose around your neck and jeopardizing your family’s ability to function.  Who said you have to take extravagant vacations every year?  Where did that idea come from?  Could it be television programming?  Internet travel deals?  Sit down and talk about the real costs of taking trips.  Make a list and be certain everyone understands how long it would take to generate the money for such a trip.  Maybe it’s a year.  Maybe it’s five years!  Does your family even have $1,000 in the bank for emergencies like a car breaking down?  Are you doing anything to get yourself off the hamster wheel of corporate production?  Can you live beyond each paycheck?

The topic of this blog is about fostering expansion.  One of the ways we expand and grow is by facing the reality of our situations in life and by making decisions and taking actions that deal with What Is.  Then we can make a way for what is desired.  So many people got caught up in ‘The Secret,’ but one of the key ideas left out of that phenomenon was the simple fact that you must take right action.  Yes, everything is created first in mind, using your powerful imagination and intuition but you must take right action to make any of those ideas a reality.  There are no short cuts in life.  They just seem that way at the time.  Later you realize the full price that must be paid.  The credit card bills do come due.

Expanding your mind by looking at what truly is in your world can be quite liberating.  It may also feel like sitting on a razor blade as Tibetan guru Chogyam Trunkpa described it.  But that experience of dealing with what is right in your face gives you a chance to just be with what is and acknowledge it.  Then if it’s not what you want, insight can come as to how you might change it.  If you don’t face it head on, you never have this opportunity to open up and see what there is to see, feel what there is to feel and know what there is to know.  None of that is possible until you sit on that razor.

A stay-cation can be a lot of fun and it’s definitely cheaper.  Maybe you can’t even afford a stay-cation.  What is possible for your family?  What could you do together that would foster family ties?  Maybe it’s a tank of gas to go visit a long distant relative.  Maybe it’s having everybody over for Sunday brunch and dinner with games.

Give your family a gift of expansion as we move into these wonderful summer months in North America.  Show them you really care for their wellbeing by having a frank discussion about what you value and how that relates to your money and finances.  No one can have true wellness and graceful aging if you’re saddled with debilitating debt and the worry and dis ease that comes with it.

For more on wellness and graceful aging, come visit me at JaniceWoody.com and here’s to your Lifetime Health!

For Your Family:  Set the Example

If you’re not living an amazing life right now, what would it take to change that?

What more is possible?  What would an amazing life look like for you?

Many times people will ask these questions and immediately move into a mode of, well I have to … followed by striving for some goal, some thing that, if only I could get that, I would be happy.  What if you already have an amazing life and you’re just not tuned into it?  What if everything going on around you is the greatest blessing in life?  Would you see it?  Would you have the discernment to recognize an amazing life?  As humans we always strive for something.  It’s part of our nature.  We are never satisfied and always looking to cure boredom.  Many of us drown our lives in entertainment because we are terrified of being bored.  To what else could you attribute the mindless checking of texts and email or scrolling through Fakebook or watching TV for hours on end looking, searching for something, anything to lock onto to make ourselves feel “connected.”

My amazing life is right in front of me.  I have work I love.  I have family and friends I love.  I have a healing body I love for its resiliency and strength.  All of these things are gifts from the divine put here for my enjoyment.  I’m connected at all times.  I can never not be connected for that is the nature of the Universe.  It is one song.  I seek to share my gifts so they can multiply and flourish.  Then when I ask that question, what more is possible, I start to get insights into how I can share more of me.  This makes me a blessing to others and more good things flow into my life.  And this helps me vibrate on a frequency of love and gratitude which brings more good things.

Oh, but what about the “bad” things?  Do you think they just stop coming?  Of course not.   Both the good and bad things are like thoughts we have when we meditate.  They come up, we examine them and then we release them and return our focus to what we want to experience.  We do this over and over, today and tomorrow.  We can choose to live in today and tomorrow, always coming back to our core focus, our amazing lives.

What is your amazing life?  Who’s in it?  Do you appreciate them?  When is the last time you told them how much you appreciate their presence in your life?  What would your life be like without them?  People and relationships with people are the most important things in our amazing lives.  All of the things we strive to get can be replaced.  But what happens when you lose people, relationships?  Whether they were good or bad, it leaves a scar, an empty place.

 I choose to share my amazing life with people who appreciate me and love to receive my gifts.  That’s all.  Let me know about your amazing life and how you share it.  Are you setting the example for everyone around you?  Come see me at JaniceWoody.com where I show people how to live an amazing life of wellness and graceful aging.  Here’s to your Lifetime Health!

 

For Your Family – Feed Others Good Food

Many of us prepare meals every day for ourselves and people we love.  What are you feeding them?  When I talk to people about their diets, this is what I hear.

“Oh, we eat really healthy for the most part.” Or “I’m on a diet (paleo, Atkins, “low carb”, Zone, South Beach, Nutrisystems).”  You get the idea.  And my favorite – “I’m on a diet an it’s working.” 

Of course it’s working!  You can lose weight on any diet.  I often tell my clients, you can lose weight on Beyonce’s cayenne pepper lemon juice diet.  The problem is not with the diet.  The problem lies in the thought pattern that led to the diet.  That thought that says, I’ll fix it quick with this diet. Then I can fit into that dress for my daughter’s wedding.  Or maybe I can get some love if I drop a few pounds.  Maybe then she will go out with me.  Or, my doctor said I need to lose 20 pounds.  He said I should be on a low carb diet.  I would love to kill that term “low carb” but I don’t believe in PC speech so I’ll leave that one alone.

What if we’re all delusional?  I’m being kind here because the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again expecting different results!  How many times have you heard yourself saying any of those previous statements?  How many diets have you tried?  What happened when you came off the diet?  YES!  You gained back the weight!  Sometimes it was a little, maybe a few pounds, but then over time, you got it all back and more.  

I know what I’m talking about.  Back in the day, I went on a diet and lost 40 pounds.  But the story continues …  with all the elation over succeeding and making my goal.  Whoop! Whoop!  Then, the day of reckoning came.  My environment changed dramatically.  I went from working at home (a controlled environment) to working in an office with a bunch of junk food nazis.  Every day they brought in donuts, chimichangas, tamales, cakes, pizza, ribs.  Oh and did I mention this was a high stress working environment.  That’s a part of what was driving this incessant need for fat, salt and sugar.  At first, I was strong.  I brought my lunch every day and just rushed past the kitchen.  But you know the deal.  Someone would come by my cubicle and offer me a donut.  They would come by and say ooh, you need to try these tamales.  They are SOOOOO good.  Tamales, a particular addiction of mine at the time, were calling my name.  Janice Janice Janice!  I went down for the count.  When I regained consciousness, I was 40 pounds heavier.  Oh, I seem to remember losing that 40 pounds somewhere.  Well I found it!  Dam it!

Does this story sound vaguely familiar to you?  Yes?  This is the life story of America, the BIG, the BOLD, the Beautifully FAT!  And it all started with our thinking.  That’s where everything starts.  Remember everything is created twice, first in the mind, then in our physical reality.  Big fat butts don’t just materialize out of thin air.  We start out with fat butt thinking.

Now you may be thinking, where is she really going with this?  The title of this blog is Feed Others Good Food.  Yes, and there is a point to my rambling.  So many times the excuse I hear is this. “My husband won’t eat healthy food.” “You don’t understand.  My kids are really picky eaters.” “If it takes longer than 10 minutes, we’re going out to eat.”  These are all excuses to feed your loved ones garbage.  But guess who’s sitting at the table with them.

When you decide you’ve had enough of losing the same 20 pounds over and over again, you will make a lifestyle transformation of epic proportions.  The people who get to come along for the ride are your family and friends.  You won’t be able to in good conscience serve them over processed, pesticide-ridden, GMO, chemistry project “food”.  Your life and health will mean too much to you.  And by default, you will want your loved ones in on the game.  The game is REAL FOOD, brisk physical activity, and spiritual nourishment, a complete mind, body, spirit transformation.

To get yours started, come visit me at JaniceWoody.com.  Ask about how I may serve you some good food for thought to get yourself on the path to an epic lifestyle transformation.  Here’s to your Lifetime Health!