I started this journal in hopes that my life could help or inspire someone else. Enjoy!
Sept Oct 2008
Raw Cherry Cheesecake for my Honey's Birthday
Hey sweethearts I've let two months go by with out a new entry. In September I started working with kids again and let the journal slide. In October I had a pretty rough month by getting in a minor car accident. I'm okay though, it was just a little reminder to be even more grateful for all the blessings in my life and the best blessing of all, being alive! After the accident, for some reason, I was struck with grief for a few days about my friend Annyce. I mentioned her briefly in the journal when she passed last Spring but I never fully grieved her passing. The next few days while I was recovering from the accident I just cried and cried. I miss her so much! I think the accident somehow was able to give me a little closure. I don't like to write in my journal when I'm feeling down so I just don't write at all. But luckily September and October wasn't all gloomy!
Fig Season in Full Effect
September was special because it was my honey's birthday. He told me his favorite dessert as a child was a cherry delight dessert with cream cheese so I made a cheesecake out of raw cashews and then made a sauce out of cherries and dates. For his birthday he had a long time friend come visit him from Indiana. They played 4 rounds of golf in 4 days. I supported him by buying him a round of golf, and a golf windbreaker. He had fun but he was definitely sore for a few days. Before the car accident I was even trying to learn a little golf. I took a few lessons and thought is was so fun! My grandparents learned how to play golf when they were both 70 and then they played together almost every weekend until my grandpa was in his eighties. They were so cute! I hope to be able to go back to it when my back isn't so tender.
Mango Coconut Yogurt
The following weekend I went to the Veg Fest in San Francisco. I usually go every year and this year it was very raw friendly. I would write about it but my friend Laura went and wrote an article about her experience at the Veg Fest, so go ahead and check it out for a full report.
The following weekend I drove to Concord and went to this really cool holistic healing fair with my long time girlfriend. We had a blast, there were free classes offered all day. We took a few classes on reading the lines on your hands, manifesting, and chakra chanting (which incidentally was so fun we were laughing hysterically.) We both got tarot card readings from a really talented psychic named Terry Yoder that were both really positive, we asked about our careers and we were really happy and motivated by the readings that we received. The holistic healing fair has locations all over and I'll probably go to another one in the future.
The biggest news in my life right now is that I'm dog sitting for my friend while she is in Europe. I'm having so much fun having little Penny Reh around. I've never had a pet because we always rented as a kid and our landlord's would not allow pets. It's been good for my soul to have her around and it's been good for my back to walk her everyday. At first my boyfriend was like, "She is not allowed in the bedroom!", but once we had her in our place he let her into the bed and she's been sleeping with us every night. We're both complete softies:) My friend left me with enzymes, green powder, fish oil, and probiotics for her puppy. This doggy takes more supplements than me!
My boyfriend just set up a cool system for growing wheat grass and sunflower seed sprouts. I'm now carrying hemp sprout bags. I've been testing them out and I'm really happy with the results. I soaked the wheatgrass and sunflower seed sprouts in the bags and let them hang for a day. Then we transferred the sprouts to trays with good quality organic soil and put them on a heated seedling mat and under the Hydrofarm GTV4 4-Foot-Wide Green Thumb Grow Light System. It's been about 5 days and we are almost ready to harvest. Can't wait!
Wheatgrass and Sunflower Seed
Sprouting Set Up
Another project I was up to is that I finally made young coconut yogurt. Click here for the full recipe of how to make coconut yogurt with step by step instructions. It turned out amazing especially when I blended it with fresh mango and topped it with fresh figs. Figs are still in season in California. I've been lucky to find a few fig trees in my area and have been really enjoying them. I also discovered a few tree strawberry trees and have been enjoying them as well. They are a funny raspberry colored spiky fruit with a mealy apricot colored inside that tastes like a loquat. I also have discovered some new greens that I've been really excited about. To the left is a picture of some purple amaranth leaves that made a purple instead of a green smoothie! I also came across some Malabar spinach and chickweed at my local organic farm. The Malabar spinach was slightly gelatinous and I preferred it in smoothies, but the chickweed was absolutely delicious in salads. I think chickweed is one of my new favorite greens!
Day 4 Wheatgrass and Sunflower Sprouts
The green smoothie challenge came to an end and It was a really great experience. I drank 2 green smoothies a day for two months! I didn't loose any weight but my boyfriend who substituted a green smoothie for breakfast instead of an egg sandwich in the mornings did loose some weight. He lost some inches around his waste and people have commented to me how good he looks. After the challenge I noticed improved digestion and a skin tab I was born with shrunk considerably, I barely notice it anymore. The green smoothie challenge definitely has made me appreciate the natural flavors of simple raw foods and I've decreased my consumption of salt. I will probably start it again in the future. I was so excited that I got about 80 people to participate. That's 80 more people that were introduced to the power of green smoothies! I was also thrilled that my last raw food potluck had about 60 people! Everyday it seems like the raw food community is growing locally and nationally!
I've been wanting to go on a rampage of appreciation to all the leaders of the raw food movement that have really made a difference in my life. I hear so many people put down raw food teachers because they disagree with their style of raw food they are teaching or they find out they are not perfect . . (etc.) I think people get angry when they give up their power and replace their judgment for someone else's and then realize that they should've listened to their own wisdom in the first place! Overall though I'm amazed at the kindness of people involved and interested in raw foods. There are a few raw food teachers that really deserve my appreciation.
I first learned about raw foods through www.living-foods.com. The guy behind the website is now my good friend, John Kohler. He started the website 10 years ago and it was one of the first raw food websites. Behind the scenes he has helped start many raw food entrepreneur's websites and has been attending and speaking at raw food festivals as well as putting on his own events and the longest running potluck in Sonoma County (ten years). Personally not only did his website help me learn about raw foods when I was suffering from chronic fatigue, but he has personally taught me how to prepare and eat simple raw food recipes which has worked really well for me. To this day he is a friend and business advisor and if you ever get a chance to hear him speak it's a treat.
Chickweed and Malabar Spinach
The next person I want to acknowledge is Shazzie. I've never personally met her, but have been inspired by her website. When I first went raw I used to read her journal entries and I wanted to feel and look like her. Her raw transformation pictures were amazing and I dreampt that I could be the butterfly she had become. Now days I'm really impressed with her articles and outspokenness about raising healthy vegan children. She seems to be unapologetic for being who she is and it is really inspiring. She continues to get the raw food message out in the U.K. and abroad and I applaud her work.
The next person I want to thank is Victoria Boutenko. Her book Green for Life has encouraged me to add a green smoothie to my diet every day. This simple addition to my diet has really made a difference in how I feel, and I've noticed that most people are receptive to green smoothies whether or not they are into raw foods or not. I'm really thankful that she introduced green smoothies to my partner and I. We have fun making them every morning and the clean up is so much easier than juicing! I was lucky that Victoria came and spoke at our local potluck group. As I mentioned in my last journal entry, Victoria is so warm, gracious, and giving of her time and information.
Penny Reh Gearing up
for a Walk in the Rain
I have many more raw food teachers, leaders, and visionaries to thank and I encourage you to thank the ones that have made an impact in your life. Don't be shy to let them know. I know that when I get an e-mail of appreciation it just makes my whole day. Write them an e-mail, show up to an event, donate to their cause, eat at their restaurants or buy a product from them. Spread the love!
I leave you with another poem - hugs C
What to Remember When
In that first hardly noticed moment in which you wake,
coming back to this life from the other
more secret, moveable and frighteningly honest world
where everything began,
there is a small opening into the new day
which closes the moment you begin your plans.
What you can plan is too small for you to live.
What you can live wholeheartedly will make plans enough
for the vitality hidden in your sleep.
To be human is to become visible
while carrying what is hidden as a gift to others.
To remember the other world in this world
is to live in your true inheritance.
You are not a troubled guest on this earth,
you are not an accident amidst other accidents
you were invited from another and greater night
than the one from which you have just emerged.
Now, looking through the slanting light of the morning window
toward the mountain presence of everything that can be
what urgency calls you to your one love?
What shape waits in the seed of you
to grow and spread its branches
against a future sky?
Is it waiting in the fertile sea?
In the trees beyond the house?
In the life you can imagine for yourself?
In the open and lovely white page on the waiting desk?
by David Whyte © 1999 Many Rivers Press