Thursday, July 17, 2008



What started out as my desire for some chocolate icecream, turned into yummy fudgicles.

2 cups young thai coconut meat 
1/2 cup maple syrup
1/3 cup agave nectar
1/2 cup raw cocoa powder
1 TBSP vanilla extract or split a half vanilla bean and scrap out seeds
Dash of sea salt
~2-4 cups of ice

Blend first 6 ingredients in a high speed blender until smooth and creamy (delicious pudding!), then add enough icecubes until the consistency and taste of softened chocolate icecream.

Eat about half out of a bowl, like I did.

Pour remaining into popsicle molds and freeze.  

As you can see, Ian loved these!

Monday, July 14, 2008

My Crystal Child

I posted a portion of this entry on my son's webpage.

Today's conversation with Ian was so moving. We spent the morning lounging around playing and talking. I love having conversations with him. I think maybe this morning I mentioned having a little belly ache but didn't think much of it. Then later we were resting on the couch and talking and he offered me one of his grapes.

"Grape Mommy?"

No thank you Ian.

"Mommy tummy hurts?"

A little bit.

"Shut eyes" he told me.

I shut my eyes and heard him kiss his hand and then felt him pat my arm. I opened my eyes.

"Eden pat mommy. All better. Mommy happy."

Touched by his sweetness I welled up a little and said,

You are such an angel.

He put his hands together and said,

"Eden angel hands."

I agreed, "Yes Ian you have angel hands."

He corrected me,

"All people angel hands."

Ian thinks all people have his healing angel hands.

I was so touched by this. He's such a beautiful spirit. He is often quick to kiss our adult boo boos when we get them or massage our backs. He gets worried and concerned when he sees other children crying and I explain they feel sad or have a boo boo. He usually runs to hug and kiss them. Unfortunately, other children don't often welcome Ian's affection because they want their own mama. I am trying to teach him other ways to effectively focus his great empathy and caring in these situations but love that his first desire is to help them by enveloping them in his own energy. He's a special little man.

I believe Ian is one of those special Crystal Children, coming to this place in the wake of the Indigo Children (I think I am one of these). I love those quiet moments we share when his light is shining so brightly. He's wonderous and I am lucky to have him here to teach me so much.

Excerpt from website link inserted in text: The Crystal Children will be more consciously aware of their direct contact to the divine. They will provide insight into our innate potential abilities and operate from a viewpoint of group consciousness. As they grow, the idea of ‘competition’ will seem strange. They will bring much love and unity to the people of Earth and radiate this in their beingness for others to see. The Crystal Children, who are born in the new millennium, will be attentive of their mission to bring a higher consciousness to the world. By the time they are young adults they will be at the forefront of shaping the new earth with their teachings and healing abilities; having benefited from the authority on Earth of the Indigos before them.

Post-Fast Report

I ended up completing a 4 day fast on raw juice which I am pretty pleased with.  My goal is to build up to a 6-8 day fast since real cleansing doesn't reportedly start until day 5 of a fast. But overall, I am glad to have a done this practice. Baby steps! My body is trying to re-start digestion now, it's still a little sluggish.  But I feel lighter, cleaner, and clearer in mind, which is the whole point and the exercise in discipline is always a good thing.  I am going to continue juicing until dinner for a while.  I definitely renewed my love of juice. Over the past few days I enjoyed a variety of fresh juice including; pineapple, pineapple-cilantro, cucumber-pear-ginger-cilantro-mint, spinach-apple-lemon, and carrot-apple-ginger, just to name a few. Several were just "everything but the kitchen sink' vegetable concoctions.  I found they tasted great with ice cubes made from coconut water.  The chlorophyl in green juice is similar to hemoglobin and coconut water is very similar to blood plasma, so together they make a wonderful combination both delicious and nutritious.  I equate drinking freshly extracted juices to be as good for adults as mom's milk is for babies and toddlers. It's the perfect food.  Ian even helped himself several times to my green veggie juices. What a great way to get green food into kids!

Spinach Strawberry Salad

I had this at a family cook out recently and it appeared mostly raw. My aunt gave me the recipe and I only had to tweak it a little bit.
1 bag baby spinach 
1 pint strawberries, sliced
1/2-3/4 cup walnuts

Poppyseed Dressing
1 vidalia onion, chopped 
1/3-1/2 cup agave nectar (adjust to desired sweetness)
1/3 cup apple cider vinegar (Fresh lemon juice would probably be very yummy too)
1 tsp dry mustard powder
1 tsp salt

3/4 cup olive oil
1 1/2 tsp poppy seeds.

Add first five dressing ingredients to the blender and blend until smooth. With the blender running, drizzle in the olive oil to elmulsify.  Turn off blender and add poppyseeds. Pulse once or twice just to mix in.
I used part spinach and part rainbow chard for the salad since I've been getting a ton of it from our CSA.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Foster Dog Diaries - Day 22: Just One of the Dogs

Daisy is officially just one of the dogs now.  I think she finally has accepted that the dogs are her main companions and that she herself is one.  The whining has decreased significantly and her favorite person has switched from me to Evan. 

She has been nearly perfect and there has been no more shenanigans about being in a crate, or being separate from us. She has developed some independence and is definitely less clingy and needy.  She even laid out on the back deck by herself for about a half hour today while we did things in the house. Not a complaint. This is a huge improvement in three weeks! 

It looks like Daisy has gained some weight because her hip bones are no longer visible and she seems to be building some muscle in her hindquarters.  She is eating well, still very affectionate and very tolerant and gentle with Ian.   I think the last homepathic remedy we chose for her was perfect and it has really helped her over her intense separation anxiety.

Friday, July 11, 2008

Glorious Week of Summer

We've had a beautiful week. The weather has been summery and warm but not too humid and Ian and I have managed to get to the beach three times.   On Monday we met our friend Christine and her children at Ninigret Park where there is a small pond and sandy beach as well as a playground. Ian finally overcame his recent fear of playing in the water and had a blast splashing about.  On Wednesday we met our Mom group friends Kirsten and Kristen and all the kids at the same location.  And finally today my friend Carrie, who is my parents neighbor in MA, came to visit with her two children and we spent a few hours at Quonachataug Breachway where there is a great little strip of beach along the salt ponds. 

On Tuesday the electrician finally completed wiring our new whole house fan, the Airscape 1.7.
It's relatively quiet and after running for three evenings in a row, our whole house feels very cool, in fact its downright cold in the morning.  It's taken a few days to master the art of strategic window opening, but I think we have the hang of it now. As soon as the day warms up, we shut all the windows and close blinds on the sunny sides and the house pretty much feels like it has been air conditioned.  I think this might have been one of our best investments.

On the raw food front, I have recently felt like my eating had gotten a bit out of control.  I pretty much started veering off the raw food path last month during the graduation/birthday/father's day hoopla as well as other cookouts and never seemed to make it back to a healthy way of eating. One thing I have over the past year eating raw foods is that SAD or cooked foods are ADDICTIVE! Once I have some, I can go a few weeks before I finally get back on track. This week was that week. Eating when I am not hungry, finishing my plate even when I am full, or eating by the clock have all contributed to some major binging and an increasing scale to show the damage. Yesterday I finally had enough, bloated, grouchy, and feeling overall ick, I began my second juice fast.  I did one last October for about 2 days.   

So since yesterday I have been enjoying a hearty array of fresh organic fruit and vegetable juices and, you guessed it, the vitamix has been doing the work.  I simply add the fruits and veggies to the blender and let it whir and then strain the liquid through a nutmilk bag.   A nutmilk bag, I recently learned, is a shrunken down bag used to strain paint. So after spending $15.00 on my first one, I got three today at the hardware store for $6.00.  Score!  

In any case,  its pretty amazing how satiated I am from juice. The beauty of a juice fast is you get all the benefits of a fast (toxin cleansing, digestive rest, etc) without suffering because your blood sugar is kept stable and your body is flushed with all the vitamins, enzymes, and water that it needs.  It's like feeding your body liquid gold.  Since your body is not using its energy to digest anything, it can do other things like eliminate waste matter, bolster the immune system, make new cells, etc.   I feel wonderful! The bloating is gone and those pesky 7 lbs are melting away.  I've found fasting, even just fasting on juice until dinner for a few days, is a great way to break through a weight loss plateau if that is the goal.  For me, the raw diet is not about losing weight, which is probably why I've ate this way more and more over the last 12 months.  It is a lifestyle that resonates for me and I'm enjoying the journey without any particular destination.  
The other beautiful thing about a juice fast is it re-calibrates my palate and my feeling of fullness. Simply, I just make better food decisions for a long time to come after I break the fast.  Not sure how long I'll go on this one, but the second day has been pretty good so I think I'll keep going.

Sunday, July 6, 2008

Rawcreational Activities

I've been having a great time with the new Vitamix blender or, as I like to call it, jet engine with a blender on it. It has made new recipes possible and old recipes even better. This past week I tried several recipes and have really enjoyed the results
One night we made a beautiful cold cucumber soup, from a recipe my friend Kirsten gave me. It was really simple to do and I added chopped cucumber for something textural interest. We paired it with some raw vegetable spring roll wraps (shredded zucchini & carrot, cilantro, mint & scallion) with a mango dipping sauce and a "peanut" (almond) dipping sauce.
Another night I prepared a raw alfredo sauce, which turned out creamier and more delicious than the unhealthy cream and cheese based sauces. I served it over spiraled summer squash noodles with spinach and marinated portabello mushrooms. It was divine!

Raw Freedom Community (RFC) is one of the best resources I have found for raw food creations and most of my recipes I have either gotten direclty from there or gotten ideas from there and then morphed to my pleasing. However today I tried a Raw Cheddar Sauce from that site and its probably the best nut based cheese I've had yet...and I"ve had some good ones. I actually had not decided how I was going to use it before making it, and considered my options as I licked it off a spatula. As it turned out, Ian came in asking for lunch. I spiraled off a couple of zucchini and we both enjoyed a raw vegetable version of the all time kid favorite, Mac n' Cheese. It was super yummy.

For a family BBQ on Friday I brought a veggie lasagna. I've made several versions of this in the past, but the sauces were incredibly smooth this time thanks to the Vitamix. All of my SAD (Standard American Diet) family members seemed to enjoy it. And they devoured the triple berry cake with black rasberry sauce. I overheard someone say that the worst thing they could say about the cake was that it was healthy. Unfortunately, I did not take any photos of the cake, but I included a photo someone else posted from RFC. Mine looked pretty much the sameThe last thing I made (and the only thing I can think of right now) is a brownie with caramel sauce. I haven't taken a picture of mine yet, but maybe I will tomorrow. They are wonderful for a chocolate craving and because they are made from raw chocolate, which is a superfood, my body is also nourished as I indulge in these treats.
Now I am saving up for a food dehydrator, which should even further expand my rawcreational activities in the kitchen!

Foster Dog Diaries - Day 16

It's been two weeks since Ms. Daisy's arrival. About a week after we got her, Evan posted her ad on the CDRN website. We didn't even need it though because I was able to interview a home that had contacted me several weeks ago and it seems like a perfect fit! Daisy will most likely be headed to sunny Southern CA to spend her days with a single retired woman. I couldn't have thought of a better situation for her. The only downside is the retirement will not start until mid-August, so Daisy will be with us for several more weeks. Oh well, it gives us more time to get her in better physical condition and work on her manners a bit more. Daisy has taken well to raw food and about 50% of that heavy plaque build up on her teeth is gone now.

After a couple of doses of the first homeopathic remedy that was prescribed for her, we realized it was not the right one. The only thing it did was turn the mildly annoying whining into a feverpitched screaming every time she was left alone. After 2 days of this, I was ready to kick her out the front door and frantically contacted my homeopath. We came up with another remedy and this one seems to suit her symptoms (screaming, dog aggression, inability to be alone, anxiety, stress etc) and we saw an improvement within minutes of her getting her first dose. The biggest signal that we had given her the right remedy was soon after her first dose she was laying next to Evan. Daisy, in the previous weeks, had shown that she was VERY territorial and possessive of people and places, such her crate. We called Marley towards her (our alpha) and Daisy very appropriately kept her tail and head down and scooted out of her way. Success!

A day or two later she and Camber were upstairs and I guess Camber (the sweetest pup in the world) wandered to close to Daisy who was near Evan and Ian and she trounced Camber. Camber has never encountered such an inappropriate display of dog behavior retaliated quickly but they both stopped when we yelled. Camber has held that grudge ever since so she and Daisy cannot be left alone. To compound that relationship, Camber is our lowest ranking dog right now and with Daisy coming into the house their would already be tension between these too as Camber doesn't want to be ranked lower than the spayed newcomer. We simply don't leave them alone, though I have caught Camber nipping Daisy's but when she walks by. Other than the raised hair between the two younger girls, Daisy is getting on well with the other dogs and has even been caught trying to play with Isaac.

The excitement for the week was definitely the night Evan, Ian, and our friend Kelly and I went for our usual walk to see the horses around the corner. We left Daisy alone upstairs and when we came back she greeted us in the front yard. She had broken through the screen in our living room window. She was so thrilled to see us, she came running right up and Evan carried her back in. Thank goodness she didn't go off exploring and she came right too us. From now on windows are opened from the top only.

Speaking of Isaac; We've had a very brave and rather annoying deer visiting our yard recently. She stands about 10 feet from the dog fence casually grazing, while 5 crazed dogs hurl themselves against the fence barking wildly. The deer is not concerned and she shows up at least twice a day. After about 2 weeks of this, we put Isaac's ID tags on and took him out back. I focused him on the deer and let him loose. He chased her off and then I called him and he came running back. As a reward we played tennis ball with him, but Ian was begging to take him to the river in our back yard for a swim. As we made our way down to the river, Isaac either saw the deer or picked up its scent and he took off. He's been gone about 1.5 hours now and I am starting to get a little concerned. He's 10 years old and a good scent dog so I am optimistic that he'll come back on his own. This didnt' stop me from driving the neighborhood a few times to see if he emerged in someone else's yard, but fingers crossed that he comes back soon.

(Updated: Isaac returned 2 hours later, still carrying the tennis ball he took off with. He sauntered up the hill rather slowly so he was probably running full tilt for the entire two hours. I just gave him a dose of arnica (for muscle soreness) and will put him to bed now.)