Life Update

I started writing this post with the intention to unload all of the emotions and motions I’ve been going through lately, but instead, I’ve decided to refocus it on my immediate goals. That seems more productive than whining about how hard life has been lately. I know that everyone goes through tough stuff and there are plenty of clichés that fit into this scenario. But the truth is that what I’m going through is no greater or lesser than anyone else’s struggles. I plan to keep on moving forward and growing with each lesson life hands me.

On that note, I haven’t had a lot of time for self care in the month of May and I want to make sure June factors in more time to focus on the things that are important for my immediate future.

  1. Saving

Miami Beach

We have a lot of travel coming up this year so I have been actively focusing on saving. After being a student for so long, having money in the bank is a new and fun situation to find myself in. Not spending it is the hard part. I’ve put most of the money I’ve saved up to this point into travel so now I’m actively working on building up that bank again.

  1. Blogging

sugar paper Planner

I’ve been working on maintaining a regular posting schedule but this month threw me off in a big way. Every weekend has been filled with family obligations, which isn’t a bad thing, except it leaves little time for planning posts, taking pictures and writing. I’m hoping June gives me more time to focus on writing. So far, this weekend remains relatively open and I hope to set some time aside with my planner. Having a paper planner is the best thing I’ve done all year. It’s a great place to jot down notes and it [Read more…]

6 Things I Learned as a Chaperone


Yesterday, I chaperoned the Lancaster Elementary field trip to Epcot. The field trip was fun, and it was a nice treat for the 5th graders. With graduation to 6th grade right around the corner, it was well deserved. 

Being a first time chaperone, there was a lot to learn. I thought I would be terrible at it, but it turns out I’m a pretty good leader (of children).


6 Things I Learned as a Chaperone:

  1. Give your group options; if they don’t want to wait in a 90 minute line, don’t. If they’re okay with waiting, wait. 
  2. PB&J is still delicious. Even as an adult.
  3. A stern look goes a long way.
  4. Model good behavior because someone is always watching you.
  5. Teenage (or almost teenage) girls can be very sassy.
  6. Your child’s teacher is a saint. They deal with not only your child, but 10-20 other children at one time. And they do it with patience and grace (and without the use of swear words).

[Read more…]

How Traffic Affects Your Stress Levels

When I was a student at Bastyr, I had the privilege of taking counseling classes with Dr. Brad Lichtenstein. We started most (okay, every) class with a meditative exercise. I’ll be the first to admit that my initial reaction to the exercise was “this is why people think NDs are strange.”

But then something happened.

I started to enjoy the meditative processes he was teaching us. And I found myself sharing the techniques with others (including patients I was seeing as a student clinician). Dr. Brad had a way of speaking and presenting that was entertaining while still getting the point across.  

Dr. Brad crossed my path again when I saw the video above posted on Facebook; it’s a news segment from Q13 in Seattle and talks about how traffic affects your stress levels. It seemed so appropriate, given how awful my commute has been lately. He goes through the effects of traffic stress on your physiology by using a biofeedback machine and the results will really make you rethink how you react to other drivers. [Read more…]

Costco Shopping Guide: Part Three

To say life has been busy would be an understatement. Since I got back from Denver a few weeks ago, life has been nonstop. This past weekend we finally had the chance to make a much needed Costco run and we came back with a few goodies.

1. Organic Coconut Oil

Coconut Oil

In my opinion, Carrington Farms makes the best coconut oil. The price at Costco can’t be beat! I’ve been using this brand for almost two years now and I based on it’s quality/price, I don’t think I’ll ever use another brand. I use this for cooking and beauty projects (like this or this).

2. Orgain Chocolate Plant ProteinOrgain Chocolate Plant Protein

If you’re already someone who uses plant protein, you’ll appreciate this brand. It actually tastes good. So good, that Matt will drink it without complaining. It’s a lot creamier than my Garden of Life protein and the flavor is great. 

3. Rojo’s Organic Salsa

Rojo's Organic Salsa

This was an impulse purchase. They were sampling it with edamame chips (also amazing) and we purchased it since we were going to a BBQ at my parents house. It’s fresh and delicious. I would definitely buy it again if [Read more…]

Secret Tomato Sauce


Matt and I have been working our way through Rich Roll and Julie Piatt’s new book, The Plantpower Way

I think Rich is super lucky to have a wife like Julie. Based on what he wrote in the introduction of the book, Julie is the inspiration and guiding force behind their plant based lifestyle. She’s dedicated to creating family friendly, plant based recipes that taste amazing. After reading through their stories and looking at the images they share in the book, I have a reasonable goal of being invited to their house for dinner.

One of the first recipes we tried was the zucchini lasagna. I know you’re probably thinking: been there, done that #zoodles. But this recipe was really about the sauce. The secret tomato sauce. 

Simple Medicine: Zucchini Noodles

Zoodles for days

Eating a plant based diet has meant giving up dairy for us. Giving up dairy means no more cheese, and lasagna without cheese? It doesn’t seem right.

But it is! Because of the Secret Tomato Sauce. [Read more…]