All posts by Suz

I was a Project Manager and writer for many years. I have had a passion for animal and human welfare, natural health and beauty and was laid off my corporate job this year, allowing me to go from a time famine to being able to start this blog and potentially inspire and help others on their journey to living their best holistic life.

Namaste A Yoga Meditation

When I first took up yoga nearly 20 years ago, I was transfixed upon the meaning behind a word I had never heard prior; Namaste.  We are all spiritual beings, filled with the anima, the soul and breath of life that all animals are filled up with.   In the scurry to get projects completed, the car serviced, the kids off to school, pets to the vet, the home cleaned, and figure out how to carve time out to work on our frayed nerves, work out, work in and work on ourselves this is a great word to meditate upon. 

The meaning behind the word Namaste is that the divine in me acknowledges, sees, the divine in you.  When I say Namaste, I am acknowledging your spiritually divine spark, your holiness.  And amid all this chaos, you do have this spark!  The Indian people I worked with used the word as a greeting and a departure. Hello sure pales in comparison. 

I love yoga, and there are many forms, for it’s balancing and healing of the entire system.  Regardless of where you plan to practice, I encourage you to get a Manduka yoga mat.  They are the best, thickest for the knees and joints, easy to clean and last forever.  And now they come in colours!

Types of yoga really run the gamut from Flow or power yoga where you get your heart rate up a bit and flow from one position to the next swiftly, to Iyengar and Anusara where the pace is slow and methodical with high importance placed upon the body structure, stacking the bones and keeping a watchful eye on alignment.  My first teachers were Baron Baptiste,  Iyengar and Vinyasa trained so form was taught.

At the Y, I have become more involved and aware of Iyengar.  At first I felt it was too slow but now I get it.  And the man’s story is fascinating, sickly as a child, he was sent to live with monks in hopes he would find healing.  I highly recommend reading his book, Light On Yoga which is considered the bible of yoga. Here you learn to perfect your form and allow for the healing this brings to your practice.  There is also rope yoga and I am thankful the YMCA offers this!  I have never had such release in my lower back.

Another fabulous book is Baron’s 40 days to Personal Revolution which has great mediation instructions, poses, and deep inspiring thoughts.

Yoga not only tonifies the body, tendons and internal organs but works on the mind.  In yoga, we call it monkey mind, where our thoughts are all over the place.  We learn calm, to live in the parasympathetic responses in our nervous system, the rest and digest.  In our fast-paced world, many of us just stay on a sympathetic nervous system response and wear our systems out.  Think Coronaries.  So we need more calm in our lives.  As we calm, we think clearer.  Yoga helps us grow in compassion not only for others but also for ourselves as we see from day to day our body may be different, balance, stretch or move differently.  I learned which was my stronger side through yoga as well as the myriad ways my life is imbalanced in the day to day life, such as what fingers I use to pull my pants up, or which is my pot scrubbing hand and which is my pot holding hand?  Switch things up, create even strength and balance within yourself.

Anger – One time at work, where we had outsourced to India, I was very frustrated as things were not going well at all.  These folks were put into place with very little learning on something very complicated and add to it the language barrier.  After the run around and feeling my blood boil, I ended my chat session with this exceedingly unhelpful person with ‘Namste’.  In the depth and bile of my anger over not getting something done which should have taken 1 afternoon before but now had required 35 days, I was just done talking.  I had to stop myself and breath.  It would do no good to spew hatred at the machine that put all this in place. Perhaps it wasn’t this individuals fault, who knows their personal story right?  So I just took a slow breath, let it all go and said Namaste.  I was heading my finger on the button to then end the chat session when a message came back to ‘hold on one moment more, I think I can fix this for you.’  And so it was done not in anger, not in pushing my agenda, but simply in letting it go as I acknowledged the holy, the seat of the divine in another very flawed individual as I am equally flawed too.  I ended up after this getting a whole lot of work done faster.  And I shared with my US team what Namaste means as I shared my personal story.  Unfairness, laying off the wrong person, car accidents, loan interest rates going up happen.  Life happens.  The point of it all is to acknowledge the divine in everything which surrounds you.  There you find peace and gain enlightenment.  Namaste.

Vegan Death Threats & Conflicting Thoughts

As a vegan, I have a few conflicting thoughts on a few things. I know veganism gets VERY political. Someone wished me, my pets, my entire family to die of cancer and my business to fail over a discussion about cashew cheese the individual (and later all her Facebook Friends)  misunderstood as dairy. I will be 58 in November. I had never before encountered that much hate and by a fellow vegan and I was just starting this journey. To my knowledge, nobody on earth before had wished me and my entire clan dead by slow acting cancer. This was in late 2016 and I still carry all that hatred. I feel sorry for any vegetarian that crosses her path.  I wonder about some person who decides to help animals and the planet and their own health by cutting out meat. And then they get an earful of hate from this ‘lady’.  Boom, they are back to eating meat and whatever else, screw it!  I want nothing to do with the crazy people, right?  This is exactly how I was feeling at any rate.  The person spewed so many insults I had to block FB and shut down. And then I just wanted to spite eat meat and cheese.  This movement is never about one individual, but about the end goals.  When we get so angry at a person we don’t even know because they had a bite of something, and we make the adult decision to act out that rage, then we become accountable for that ripple effect.

We must come to this table with logic not just ‘I love animals.’  I have clients who still eat meat, greatly reduced, but still, it is a part of their life. I must acknowledge it may always be so as I suggest healthier and kinder ways.  In short, if my job is to help spread the reasons to go vegan (health, planet and animal kindness) then I must place myself in some trenches to do this work. My husband is an omnivore by choice and he loves his local honey. On this plane of existence, none of us are perfect and there will be a compromise at some juncture in everyone’s life. Thankfully I had great training at Hippocrates and this greatly helped when encountering the death threats, the unrelenting hate and refusal to acknowledge logic. I endeavor to read labels, do and know my research, think before speaking and act in compassion. This would be compassion for human animals as well as the rest of them we share the planet with. We are overrun as a species, so I made the choice not to bear children. This also saves the planet.  Hippocrates Health Institute trained on the avoidance of all sugar. Eggs contain a protein our bodies do not process well. We were also instructed to avoid any processed foods, bread, alcohol, caffeine and do good food combining and aim for 80%+ raw food.

While many of us espouse an all or nothing approach, and that is absolutely fine, it is compassionate to realize not all of us will be 100% all in.  I want also to reach these people.  If I can get a daily meat eater to go all organic, to know the farm where the meat comes from, reduce his dependence upon fast food and consider some vegan or vegetarian meals with no meat at all, that is progress.  When a client has a kindness meal, then more, then an entire day of kindness, then several, I consider this a win.  This individual has grown in awareness, has developed a foothold on the logic that his current way of eating is not planet sustainable, isn’t healthy long-term and is cruel to the fellow souls he is ingesting and is incorporating change.  I have not totally turned him off and alienated him with judgment.  I share facts and options, with the compassion I was never offered when discussing cashew cheeses.

Veganism is a passionate endeavor but we all must realize that the individuals who come to this lifestyle do so for various reasons.  Some are focused just on animals while others want to save the planet and still others are riddled with Chronic disease and want to reverse those ills, lower their blood pressure and risk of diabetes or more stints in their arteries and live resiliently.  For me it’s about all 3. What the evil vegan wishing me and mine dead didn’t know is that I had already lost my entire family to cancer and yes, the slow way.  Breast for my mother, bone for one brother, Prostate for another, colon for a cousin and breast for an aunt and kidney for my father.  Two of these people died within 12 months of each other right on the heels of me losing my job of 26 years.  It was after losing my employment that I took a year of studies with Hippocrates.

When working with a client, I follow the Hippocrates guidelines and then tweak that towards what my client is willing to do.  I am there to help and education and coach.  I make a lousy judge, I am imperfect myself.

Recently a company I rep for discussed a body butter that had beeswax in it. I was adoring this product and now realize it isn’t vegan. This term can mean many things but essentially espouses to act daily with the purpose and intention of causing no harm to animals, from what we eat, drink, sleep on, wear, use or ride. But veganism also delves into what can be considered exploitation. This issue can get very tricky.  

Exploitation is wrong and all of us encounter it by our fellow humans, such as at work. Big corporations, such as those who sell honey to Costco, kill the bees in the process of stealing the honey.   Below is a great article on honey bees.  I have always espoused supporting local beekeepers because they truly care about the bees and as bees are in decline, somebody should be supporting these folks. Our neighbors are the Zip Code Honey people and run the Texas Honeybee Guild. They take very good care of their bees and while I don’t eat honey, my husband does and buys from them. BlendItUp Bee Free Honey makes a great substitute.   

Exploitation can be so many things.  One is eggs.  I am actually happy to see more families raising hens in their backyard and I once had a harem of hens myself.  I took great care of them and learned so much having them.  I was told growing up that chickens were stupid.  Nope, not at all true.  So if you have hens, are feeding them organic feed, augmenting with calcium and allowing them to live out their days in enjoyment and love even when they stop producing eggs for you, I am not sure that I have a right to complain about that.  One of my vegan friends will on very rare occasions, once a year perhaps,  enjoy such an egg.  I would far better prefer to see this than my neighbors buying eggs from hens that suffered at the hands of factory farming methods.  I know from raising my own, the hens were happy and were not, as someone insisted they were, ‘forced’ to produce eggs.  As a vegan, I no longer raise them but have compassion for those that make this choice.

What about horseback riding?  Or vegetarianism? There’s so much backlash with the vegan society towards vegetarians when in reality, they are making a huge dent in the cruelty and planet sustainability.  True, there is a big difference between being vegan and being vegetarian but can we not be a bit more kind? People change given the right support and motivation.  I have known several vegetarians go vegan.  And meat eaters go vegan on a weekly basis across the planet.  Is the horse being exploited if he is well cared for and loves being ridden?  My horse loving friend, Laura, told me the story of how her horse Dovey spawned Little Dove, who actually never went through any coaching or training to be ridden.  No, she just lined up at the post and waited for her bit and saddle and off she trotted with her tribe, not one buck.  Wherever human animals and the rest of them cross paths, animals are and should be a partnership with us; an acknowledgment of respect and kindness.  We learn from them and they from us.

I use the term human animals because I believe so much of the time we humans forget we are just mammals.  Sure, biblically we were called to watch over them and wow we are doing an abysmal job for the most part now,  but this really doesn’t make us ‘better’.  What it makes us is an animal having an assigned task directed by our maker that we are epically failing at, in spite of every advantage to do the job with aplomb.  Am I exploiting my dog expecting him to guard my home?  It’s his job and it goes with his natural instincts but would this be an exploitation?  I also adore him, keep him company and we go for walks and play together.  He is living a great life and eating homemade meals with every need catered to. What is exploitation?

Expand the mind – If our ways were that of the 50’s or 60’s, from the way we cared for our livestock and also the amounts ingested on an annual basis, I don’t believe our vegan movement would be so passionate or so large looming.  There would be far less of us.  This cause exists and is growing because our lives, as a species, are out of balance with nature.  We have allowed cruelty, conceit, greed, and arrogance to rule us rather than compassion and wisdom. Wisdom sits at the seat of compassion. Nothing else matters without it. So when I hear someone say they cannot condone horseback riding that a fellow vegan does with their horse because that is exploitation or goes on the attack with local beekeepers, my heart aches.  We have far larger tofu fish to fry, with the big corporations that are the cause of at least 95% of the pain rather than fight amongst ourselves or nitpick everything in a less than educational loving way.  In a world where nothing will ever be 100% vegan, let’s focus on bringing awareness with kindness and celebrating the wins.   I used to joke that where it says in the bible the meek shall inherit the earth, that we would end up overrun by cockroaches.  Could it possibly be that the meek discussed would be us human animals becoming more like gentle lambs, not eating each other literally, emotionally or spiritually?

Https://grist.org/food/when-i-eat-honey-do-i-hurt-bees/

Fast Food Slow Death

People get emotionally attached to food.  Whale pods are found to have a varied diet based upon what the young were raised to think of as fuel. They hunt and dine according to their teaching.  Like them, we’re taught at a young age what food is.  If you were brought up on slow food, where a garden was grown with care, your parents brought home fresh produce and meals centered around wholesome home cooking that included fresh salads, fruits, and raw or lightly steamed veggies or lucky enough to be raised by hippies that went vegetarian and all organic, man, you have a lucky leg up on the rest of us.  I was lucky enough to discover Seventh Day Adventism as a teen where most eat Old Testament or vegetarian. This is why the SDAs are their own blue zone with folks living triple digit life spans. If you were raised in an environment where your parents weren’t knowledgeable about what food really is, didn’t cook, relied upon take-out and Wendys, then you’ve probably absorbed those habits as an adult. If you have kids, they have learned from you what food is.  While challenging, these habits can be broken once we begin to realize what we are doing to ourselves and gain some self-respect and self-love and acceptance.

When we think about illnesses, we think in terms of family history and diseases that run in families.  We tend to say ‘Cancer runs in our family’, or Diabetes, or heart disease rather than to acknowledge the truth, and self-empowerment in that truth, that it’s the fuel we feed our bodies that causes the disease. It’s our lifestyle that invites or shuns disease.  In 90-95% of the cases, it isn’t your DNA. DNA, over time, is absolutely affected by generations of poor diet and lifestyle as we propagate our species and when I hear about this stuff I always go back to the bible where, as a kid and later as a teen, I remained flummoxed as to why God would be so mean as to decree the sins of the father should be played out on his children and his children’s children.  Now I believe it was not meanness, but a warning because these things are just simply so, how it all works.  This is where we get terms like ‘She comes from strong stock’.  Our DNA, over time, can weaken as we load up on toxic substances rather than proper care.  You can do yourself and any offspring a big favor by mending ways.

What is fast food?  Fast food is junk food.  It isn’t just what you get at McDonald’s or Jack-In-The-Box, it’s anything junk, overprocessed, rushed into being without the proper care.  Fast food is also obtained at the supermarket which is why as a Plant-Based Lifestyle Coach, I help folks learn to read labels and learn how to best navigate the grocery store. There is no love in this kind of food, just opiates, sugar, grease, and greed.  I will address the various junk/fast foods and why they are considered junk.

GMO’s – Going wild-crafted and organic or raising your own, is the only way to assure you are not digesting pesticides with every bite.  Also, when you buy certified organic foods, this tells you that the produce is not genetically modified or GMO.  Nobody should eat Frankenfood. Whatever your personal religious beliefs, and this blog is spiritual in many respects but is absolutely not about religion but I have to just say this….There is a grand and great design in how our world and everything in it has fit together.  We are just beginning to unravel just a few of the threads of how one species helps another.  The rainforests we are pummeling daily to make more beef contains a myriad of species we will never know as we cause their direct extinction.  And when we genetically modify what nature has provided us in an attempt to make it better, we create Frankenfood.  We create hens that cannot walk without breaking a leg or having a heart attack or a cow who drags her utters on the ground with milk nature designed for her baby who gets taken away so we can drink her milk. Her body was never designed to contain that much milk at once.  She has to feel bloated and miserable.  I believe it has to be a grave sin to do these things, to nature, to go against mother nature if you will.  When we eat these foods we eat these sins.

PLANTS – When you just buy the typical produce, these fruits, veggies, the processed bread, grains and pasta, all have pesticides in them and likely GMOs. When you eat out, unless you are very careful, this is what is served up.

MEAT – If the meats you buy aren’t organic and from a local better intentioned farmer who truly raises his animals in sunlight on fields of grass etc, you are eating pain, misery and cannibalism.  Animals in these corporate or factory farms rarely if ever seen the light of day.  They are confined and treated horrifically and raised in dark sad environs.  Their feed consists of things they’d dare not touch in natural life.  They call it ‘enriched feed’ and they grind up euthanized dogs, cats, not bothering to remove tags and collars and not caring that euthanasia drugs are in the meat product.  They grind up the tumors, the cancers, the pharmaceutical drugs these pets were one before death.  Also included in ‘Enriched feed are other dead farm animals.  This is how mad cow became a thing.  Cows that would not normally eat their dead, were and were infected.  And this affected people who ate the cows.  We bastardize nature.  A cow would not typically eat another cow or dog or kitty but on these farms they do.

DAIRY – Goat is better, but all cow derived milk (and cheese) has casein in it.  This is a protein that is carcinogenic and the more stressed the mother cow is, the more casein in the milk.  While taking my Hippocrates training we were told someone bought their own organic dairy cow so they could enjoy the purest milk. Growing up I was told we drank the surplus.  We don’t have surplus anymore.  What happens is that these mammals are subjugated, their joys and natural proclivities are ignored.  They are regularly impregnated just so humans can take the milk meant for their babies.  The babies are shot in the head or worse if male and if female, they get to grow up to be milk producers too.  It’s hideous.  Oh and it is true that there’s puss in the milk you’re drinking.  At the rates and volumes of pregnancies and milk pumping, this is very hard work on the mother, on her body and her udders.  Cows typically live at least 20 years but on these farms, they are lucky to live 5. When you drink their milk, you drink their grief over losing the baby the milk was created for. Got milk? Got grief!

Factory and corporate farmed animals eat genetically modified organisms (GMOs) and pesticide-laden grains and corn.  We subject them to the very same awful (SAD) Standard American Diet that the greed machine encourages all of us to eat too.  Very Soylent Green.  Very unhealthy.  When we eat them, we are ingesting all their suffering, their ill-health, their cancerous tissues, and chronic sadness and disease.

Farm animals are not carnivores by nature and neither were we in the beginning.  All the great religions dovetail on humans being vegetarian. Biologically, we have the intestines of an herbivore. Even very educated people in the world of health and healing will tell me we are omnivores but really, in truth, we are not.  Look at our guts.  Our intestines are not short like a Cheetas but nice and long, like a plant eater.  Yes, like the plant eaters that we really are.  I was raised on the bible.  Biblically, we were to eat manna and when we fell and demanded meat, this was allowed with definitive rules in place.  These rules were there to guide us into cleaner eating.  In other words, if we were fallen and sullen about just eating veggies, then God allowed us to eat not only all the fruits of the fields but certain particular fish and animals that were not water bottom dwellers or pigs whose meat is absolutely as unclean as it is delicious. We were steered away from any land animals that did not chew their own cud and have cloven hooves.  The reasons for the rules were entirely health based but in today’s polluted world, you can just throw all of that out.

FISH – Whether wild caught or farm raised, it’s all bad for you. Greed again, but the reason farmed fish is horrible is due to the massive overcrowding, the putrid waters they swim in and the doses of pharma drugs pumped into these sad fish to keep them swimming. Wild caught is bad because, greed and negligence, we have pumped pharmaceuticals and plastic, mercury and other toxic substances into our waters.  There have been dead and sick pets coming to the forefront lately after well-meaning pet parents have served up Omega fish oils.  My vet just a few months ago tried to get me on fish oils for our Doberman. I said absolutely not and suggested to them plant-based omegas as a far safer option.  I get these looks when I begin talking this way with most veterinarians but when the article came out in my latest Dogs Naturally magazine, I said THERE!!! I AM correct in my thought process here…and motivated by the article kept preaching.  Lastly, good people, we have over-fished our oceans to an alarming point where we are causing the starvation of species that fish IS their food source.  They don’t have another option, polluted and filled with Mercury or not. This is what they eat.  We can do better.

PLANTS – When you go out to eat and order a salad or are asleep when you grab a head of lettuce, you’re most likely getting pesticides, fewer vitamins and minerals and also GMOs.  Go organic here and gain peace of mind and better nutrition.

To help you get and stay on track, as well as learn home remedies and recipes, I adore this Raw Vegan Series by Permachart, set designed with Brian Clement of Hippocrates Health Institute where I took my training. This makes for quick and easy reference for food combining, useful equipment, juicing vs blending, etc.

PROCESSED FOODS – Our bodies were designed for raw foods.  Look at the entire rest of the animal kingdom and own that we are animals too, we are specifically mammals.  The more we heat, blend and otherwise process our foods the less nutrition we end up with.  Soil erosion (thanks Factory Farms) has caused a magnificent loss in minerals.  Most Americans are mineral deficient.  We also tend to be shallow breathers lacking proper oxygen levels and most of us (85%) are chronically dehydrated.  When we cook our foods, we dry them out, kill off natural enzymes and vitamins and deplete oxygen. When you enjoy an organic fresh salad, you are eating oxygen as well as a better bio-available protein source rich in minerals and vitamins.  You will be less thirsty, your body will have more oxygen at a cellular level and you will be better hydrated eating a plant-based raw diet.

When we stray far from our biologically designed diet, we invite trouble.  Everything above applies also to our pets.  If you feel you must eat meat because this is a thing you won’t give up, then it should be done minimally and only organically raised animals. If you must eat junk, such as french-fries, again, make it a minimal part of your life rather than something you’re taking in on a weekly or monthly basis.  If you are willing to go 100% vegan, then yes, do that!  There is a karmic debt when we kill other souls and while I believe plants are alive too, I also realize that nothing here on this plane is ever going to be perfect.  We are trial and error here as we learn to grow in compassion, lose the judgment and rigidity and just be kinder. Eating plants is a kinder choice and healthier for us.  I have actually had death threats over cashew cheese so when I tell you how very political veganism is today, believe me, I have the first-hand experience!  A fellow vegan wished me cancer, my family to die of it, all my pets too and for my business to fail. This was over a cashew cheese that she misunderstood to be a dairy cheese.  I believe when it comes to food, the majority of us have lost our way.  I also believe that one step in the right direction is a step forward indeed.  So if you are reading and sitting on the fence, try one kindness meal then another.  Baby steps.  Rather than an all or nothing approach, think of it in terms of this: The more you adhere to a plant-based raw and organic lifestyle, the healthier you will become. You will naturally share this lifestyle with family and friends by example.  Toxins which are stored in your fat cells will finally have a chance to dissipate leaving your immune system refreshed while your arteries unclog themselves.  Don’t you want to be your most resilient?

PurePet Alternative Vets in DFW Area

Hieronymus Rhett Thomas O’Brien Puppy getting his Acupuncture treatment!

Hello! There is absolutely a time and a place for the practice of Western Medicine.  An old friend who was getting his doctorate and was the son of a surgeon used to say, very aptly, that ‘they call it the practice of medicine because that is exactly what we are doing…practicing.’  WM excels in trauma cases and is sometimes the only or the very best option.  Recently our Doberman had a neurological spine injury.  An MRI and Surgery were recommended by one vet and putting him to sleep over quality of life issues by another if there wasn’t swift improvement.  A friend of mine just had spinal surgery performed on her Doxi. Her pup is gradually improving and healing after the surgery.  My neighbor with a Dachshund, in commiserating with me when I was seeking help last June for our Doberboy, Rhett, explained that surgery was recommended but all he could afford were NSAIDs. He took his beloved pup home sans surgery, gave him his pain and anti-inflammatory meds and slowly the dog healed all on his own.  That was a decade ago.  Now elderly, the dog can hop up on furniture and trot up and down stairs with no issues.  And our Rhett is fine now after going from being unable to run, falling down repeatedly trying just to walk and with a badly stumbling gate, to back to normal all with CMT (Canine Massage Therapy) Acupuncture and an Assisi Loop.

When Rhett was a puppy, I began looking for alternative vet options and they seem to be slim. So here is what I know for those in the Dallas area. These are recommended vets whoose first thought is not the pharma reps drugs or surgery but rather a more logical, thoughtful and holistic approach.  And again, I wish to stress here that I am NOT slamming all Western Medicine workers or modalities.  But we have options far older and less invasive.  When faced with potential surgery or a few needles to fix my boy, neither guaranteed to work by the way, it made, to me, the most sense to do the least invasive thing on him and move from there, with patience and attention.  Rhett had to have bloat surgery last Christmas and that was very hard on him, the pain of the very long incision and days of healing enough to where he could sit and then more time to be able to lay down.  The poor guy stood and whined.  He’d bunch up pillows under himself to sort of melt into place to rest.  He was miserable.  But his tummy torsioned and surgery was necessary.  For folks wondering, god yes he was on heavy pain pills but nothing knocks the worst pain out.  So if you are looking at engaging a more holistic vet, from advice on what if any annual shots are recommended to homeopathic and Asian herbs & treatments, here are a few options for you; Patricia Ballard of Alternative Vet Clinic, reached at myqivet@gmail.com works The Colony area and has semi-retired. Those in the Dallas area, I schedule CMT, Canine Massage & Acupressure therapy. Out in the Plano area, Sean at Paws & Claws Animal Hospital. In the White Rock Lake area, East Dallas Vet Clinic has recently added Acupuncture. Lisa Molidor is the DVM that does this work and is terrific to work with! She also makes house calls for acupuncture work. At EDVC I also adore Kevin Gibbs. He has experience that lends him to a unique & detailed perspective on his recommendations and treatments. And, lastly, Spot On Wellness, Dr. Hartai who is just brilliant. There are no other words. He travels and has several places around the metroplex where you can seek out his chiropractic and acupuncture mad-skills.  There is also Dr. Pam with Vitality Pet Care but we tried for 3 years to get an apointment after being told she would see us as we were referred by another vet to her.  Nope.  I ended up doing my own mojo magic with what I know about Kidney disease and my boy and he is fine so far, thank you very much.  I was recently able to secure an appointment with Dr. Ballard with Alternative Vet Clinic who just told me to keep doing what I was doing.  She taught me well.♥  Recommended Reading: Dr. Goldstein Nature Of Animal Healing 

Easy Ways Toward Reducing Your Carbon Footprint Each Day!

You need to get off plastic, reuse items better, work from home wherever possible to reduce fossil fuel waste, be kinder, more present and attain enlightenment too.   And when I say you I mean me.  Seriously this is a global problem.  Our lives have been about incorporating as much convenience and single serve things as possible.  Folks even look at homes and cars as disposable now and they really aren’t!  Save the landfill by buying what you really need with an intention of using gently, passing on later to others in great condition and each of us makes a dent that way.

Sit for a few seconds and breath as you absorb the fact that most of what we do every day, how we live, from how we pad to the kitchen to pour a morning beverage to how we order lunch or shop at the store is all habit.  To make things easier our brains do this fantastic auto pilot thingy where we don’t have to think so hard about all the nit noidy things, those daily choices that we make.  Remember this is just habits and habits change.  Did you always drive, smoke, dance, sing, paint, write or drink tea, coffee or alcohol?  Really? Since you were a child?  No, you grew into various habits, some good, some bad, that just became a part of you over time.  These same things, if you want them to change, are changeable.  Just give it 30 days to make new habits, hard at first, then easier.  When I first went vegan I was deer in headlights at what to do next, what to prepare for my chef husband and now it is very easy for me to think in vegan terms.  My shock and fright is what began this blog, actually, because I wondered how many other folks were scared too, who really wanted change, wanted to help the planet, save animals, save themselves, but didn’t know yet how.  I took this amazing course at Hippocrates (links below) and started off on this journey.

As an Implementation Project Manager at Sprint, I had worked from home a couple of decades.  I barely got into the car each week and mostly ate at home.  We had layoffs and I began working for ATT and had to be in the office for a while starting out. Already concerned about my carbon footprint driving in daily, I watched in horror as my trash bin filled up with plastic and styrofoam.  They served vegan fare in the cafeteria downstairs but things were far from carbon neutral getting the items to my desk.  When I brought food in, they were in plastic baggies.  And those also piled up.

Nothing is ever going to be perfect here and I don’t think, with the fall of man, that this is ever the point of the exercise.  I do believe we are all accountable for our intentions and actions and that our path here involves lessons in being less self-directed and gain understanding and compassion.  Being imperfect, my tips may not exemplify the very best you can do for the environment or animals but perhaps are baby steps in the right direction so I encourage feedback! I am always learning and incorporating new ideas into my blog.  But be kind in your feedback because here is the thing;  you can preach about the environment and whom should be doing what till you’re blue.  If it isn’t easy enough or doable enough, convenient enough, folks won’t attempt it or stay on point with it.  That said, these are ways that I have, so far today, incorporated for better recycling and re-use and reduced plastic in my life.  I am trying to be a better vegan too.  But primarily, I am trying hard to live kinder and that means knowing my sources.  I live in a meat-eating, honey indulging family (dog, cats and husband).  This helps keep me compassionate as I look for ways to remove what animal-based products I can off the table and get better sources where I cannot.

With daily trips to work, what I saw in my life as a problem were baggies.  Loads of baggies.  I had gallon sized baggies for my salads where I would make up a batch to last me a couple of meals.  The thing to understand about baggies is even if they were to say they are BPA free, for example, there is no disclosure on the hundreds of chemicals that make up a baggie.  All of this leaches into your food.  Here are some earth-friendlier ways to detox your lunch bag,  refrigerator and life.

Stasher makes reusable baggies which are completely free of toxic chemicals.  The bags are made of natural components such as sand and oxygen and can be used for Sous Vida safely.  They may be washed by hand or in the dishwasher too!

Another great item I’ve discovered is the beeswax and organic cloth food wrappers.  I know, it’s not vegan.    But it is environmentally friendly all biodegradable and I am told bees are not harmed.  The problem with honey, other than the fact it is a sugar, is that commercially, bees are killed when their honey is culled.  But a beekeeper loves his bees and strives to keep the colony healthy and happy.  So if you indulge in honey products then you need to be responsible for knowing your source.  We have a neighbor who sells zip code honey.  They do no harm to bees.  Another wrap to consider is this 5 piece beeswax, jojoba and tree resin set for $19.99.  I wrap my avocados, vegan pizza slices etc with them.  If you choose these wraps, know that they last about a year with proper use and that is a ton of plastic wrap not in our oceans.

Say no to single-use cuttlery.  This bamboo cutlery set is something that will work well from camping to working at the office or on the road and even includes a straw. After seeing that video of the poor turtle with a huge staw stuck in his nostril that had to be surgically removed, I stopped using straws at restaurants.

This Tea Spot Urban Tumbler is a hit with our whole family! We are tea drinkers, but you can put any beverage in there.  The founder of the company cured her cancer with tea and has written a book,  Cancer Hates Tea.  What I love about this tumbler is that as it is constructed of borosilicate glass and stainless steel infuser,  it is free of toxins such as BPA. Her teas are lovely.  I loaded up on tea after learning they sold Lapsang Souchong and this is a lovely green tea sampler.   The cork around the bottle helps protect the glass while keeping your hands away from the too hot or cold beverage you’re about to enjoy.  The product doesn’t leak, forming a nice seal and I have now given this out as gifts, it’s just that good!  Reusing something you love is one of the best ways to minimize your environmental impact. ♥

You’ll control the quality of your food and save money by making and taking your lunch with you to work.  Check out this stylish option with the Tabkoe Bento Box, free of BPA materials,  while I shun microwaves, this is microwaveable.

Another great glass storage option that goes from fridge to lunch bag are these nice glass meal prep containers which airtight and space saving.

Bulk Food Bags, what about grocery shopping and all those produce bags?  These bags go from your fridge to the grocery store for re-loading!

As an affiliate marketer, there are links here to look at and purchase products.  These are products I love, use etc.  The commission I earn from purchases helps to offset the monthly costs of keeping this blog running and I appreciate the support.

 

 

 

Read and be inspired by this girl. https://www.mindbodygreen.com/0-16168/i-havent-made-any-trash-in-2-years-heres-what-my-life-is-like.html

 

Digestion – Why Enzymes Matter

One thing drilled into me at Hippocrates was the slogan HOPE = Hormones, Oxygen, Phytonutrients, and Enzymes.   Eating a healthy plant-based diet that is preferably raw and nothing cooked above 118 is ideal. The reason to eat raw or utilize low cooking and dehydrated foods are to retain the vital enzymes in the food. When we eat cooked foods, the body expends a lot of energy digesting it and creating its own enzymes to do so. With cooked foods, the body utilizes cups of digestive enzymes vs spoonfuls to break it all down. Eating cooked foods slows down the entire process and depletes the body of enzymes.  Enzymatic exhaustion is aging.  Enzymes are the spark of life, the electric.  Hippocrates maintains that eating cooked foods causes digestive glucose cytosis – where your body engages white blood cells to go ‘on attack’. The immune system doesn’t recognize processed and cooked food as food. The thought process here is that a lot of energy the body spends ‘fighting’ cooked foods could be spent on detoxing and curing cancer.  At the very least, raw foods should be consumed with cooked and eat the raw foods first, followed by the cooked ones.


Enzymes help you alkalize.  An alkaline system is inhospitable to cancer.  Enzymes benefit cardiovascular and degenerative diseases. Digestion is the #1 thing. If you lack enzymes from your food, your body will borrow it from other places and that is not a good thing.  Enzymes are necessary to break down fats, carbohydrates and protein.  Getting enough enzymes helps regulate healthy weight.  It is recommended to take enzymes with each meal or snack regardless of whether the meal is raw or cooked.  I do not take an enzyme when I juice, however, as I consider juicing to be ‘pre-digested’, meaning it is all fresh raw ingredients, macerated into a juice without pulp (see my article on Juicing vs blending) so that the body has minimal work absorbing the nutrients.  I typically juice first thing in the morning as my ‘breakfast’ and then later eat a solid breakfast of salad, typically or hummus etc.

I love feedback so please post your success stories and comments after being on enzymes. ♥

Supplements – Synthetic Vs Plant-Based

Are you concerned about the quality of your supplements?  Are you vegan and find it frustrating to assure that there isn’t anything animal based in the supplements you take?  Do synthetic vitamins provide the same quality as plant-based supplements?

About Me – I have been primarily organic with food and skincare the last 25 years and completely detoxed my home care about 20 years ago. Most of my life I lived primarily vegetarian and spent all of 2016 studying with Hippocrates Health Institute.  Hippocrates was a life-changing experience for me, where I learned how the higher up the food chain we eat (other animals) that we increase our body burden of toxins stored in our fat.  Plants do not store toxins the same way animals do.  When we filter our nutrients through another animals body, rather than getting those vitamins and minerals directly from the source (plants) we increase the body burden because our bodies, as animals, store anything that cannot be detoxed right away, into our fat to protect the entire system from shutting down.

No matter how cleanly you eat, you have a body burden.  The entire planet is polluted to a greater or lesser degree because of factory farming and an onslaught of chemicals in our air, soil and water which all move, they know no borders.

Therefore, we all must supplement to aid our bodies in getting the highest nutrition (soil erosion has wiped out vitamins and minerals) and help our DNA remain strong and repair.  If you plan on rearing children, your kids will also thank you for that genetic boost because that will be passed down!   On that note, I hear folks say that they have a history of heart disease or cancer and I want to assure you that 90-95% of cancer is from what you’re exposed to and 5-10% is genetic.  The body wants to heal and survive so give it the tools.

Here are my rules:
1)  Plant-based – The supplement must be plant-based and contain no synthetic ingredients because I believe the body, at a cellular level, doesn’t adequately absorb them or see them as food. What you want are the full spectrum nutrients you would get if you were eating optimally.  Seeing NOS which is Naturally Occurring Standard certified, on the label lets you know the product is not synthetic.

2) Organic (or wildcrafted) – The supplement must be organic so I look for certification there.  The reason is that generally the quality of the supplement is going to be better, more nutritious and being organic let’s me know it is non-GMO and that no pesticides were used.

3) Vegan – Both the product itself and whatever the softgel or capsule is made from should not be animal based.

4) Quality Control – How is the product sourced and how is it made, what is the process, or facility the supplement is made in because this matters to assure contaminates are minimized.

5) Value – I price check and ingredient check to come up with what I believe to be the best deal.

Back in the beginning of all supplements, every one was plant-based.  Then science found a way to synthesize nutrients which saves a ton of money but at what health cost?  Synthetics are a cheaper supplement to create because rather than harvesting live crops, the nutrients are synthesized in a lab.  They will tell you that doing things this way keeps the consistency, such as if one bottle has 500mg of C, the next batch will too because its a formula based on a synthetic and not a live plant where one plant is going to vary slightly from another.  While I do understand why synthetics are on the market,  in my training at Hippocrates, all synthetic based supplements were shunned.  The reason is that while we may know a particular thing, such as biotin is great, the issue is that when we take it as a synthetic, we are getting just biotin synthesized whereas when we take it in food form, from a plant, we are getting the full spectrum of nutrients in our supplement.  All things work together to form a whole.  This is how the body expects things to be because this is what happens naturally when we eat healthy food.  A salad, for example, will have numerous components, which the body knows how to break down and utilize.  As Hippocrates phrased it, “High doses are not required since biology’s orchestration enables your cells to fully embrace the unified chorus of superior elements.”
There are varied schools of thought but I believe that the body doesn’t recognize, at a cellular level, a synthetic vitamin in the same way it would recognize it in food and therefore, will not absorb and utilize it the same way with the same effects.

Hippocrates has their own brand, LifeGive,  which I use as well as reviewing and sourcing both through what I market as an Independent Consultant and online shopping.

Below is a link to Hippocrates if you are interested in going down the rabbit hole of knowledge.  The link will provide you with a free syllabus.

Essante and Miessence links below offer great organic and wildcrafted supplements and skin care and home care.

I’m available for any questions. ♥

www.miessence.com/puretemple/en/category/1/skincare

www.EssanteOrganics.com/Puretemple 

https://op.hippocratesinst.org/moreinfo/static/34  

 

 

 

Detox Heavy Metals, Radiation & Other Toxic Substances; Spirulina, Moringa & Chlorella

Eating a healthy, predominately raw plant-based diet is the big step forward in anyone’s health.  Today I want to discuss a few of my favorite superfoods.  All of us need supplementation and with 95% of the supplements on the market being toxic or a waste of money, I strive as a vegan lifestyle coach, organic skincare Independent Consultant and affiliate marketer, to basically do the research and shop all day, reading ingredients, where things are sourced, then who has the best ‘deal’ on both quality and price (value) and write about it here.

See below for my links to inquire or purchase.  While this is my work, where I earn my living,  my first and foremost goal here is to educate (and I am always learning myself) because nearly my entire family was wiped out by cancer with two more on their way out.  Whenever I am running low on something, I shop, I look for the best value and I share that information in my blog to help you too. ♥

Here are my rules:  1)  Plant-based – The supplement must be plant-based and contain no synthetic ingredients because I believe the body, at a cellular level, doesn’t adequately absorb them or see them as food. What you want are the full spectrum nutrients you would get if you were eating optimally.  Seeing NOS which is Naturally Occurring Standard certified, on the label lets you know the product is not synthetic.

2) Organic (or wildcrafted) – The supplement must be organic so I look for certification there.  The reason is that generally the quality of the supplement is going to be better, more nutritious and being organic lets me know it is non-GMO and that no pesticides were used.

3) Vegan – Both the product itself and whatever the softgel or capsule is made from should not be animal based.

4) Quality Control – How is the product sourced and how is it made, what is the process, or facility the supplement is made in because this matters to assure contaminates are minimized.

5) Value – I price check and ingredient check to come up with what I believe to be the best deal.

Spirulina or Klamath Lake Blue-Green Algae  –   Known to purge the body of heavy metals such as mercury, this plant is knowns as the best nutrition in the ocean,  spirulina contains zinc, manganese, selenium, copper. We could live abundantly on just this plant and water. Spirulina has 58x more iron than spinach, enables the body to repair DNA and protein levels are 400x more than beef. Here we want the Klamath Lake spirulina as this algae is the purest form.

Moringa – Containing all 8 amino acids, one tablespoon is equal to 2 cups of greens.  Protein, calcium, iron and fiber are all great things in this nutrient-dense plant powder.  Great for post-workout inflammation and overall detox.

Chlorella  – Chlorella is a sea plant or seaweed.  It is a powerhouse of b12, biotin, vitamin a and is known for taking heavy metals and radiation out of the body.  This supplement is what I reached out to Naoto Matsumura and recommended a few years ago.  Naoto is the man who during Fukoshima fled with the rest then later returned to his hometown of Tomioka where he remained to take care of all the pets left behind.

Links to shop & prices :
Spirulina or Klamath Lake Blue-Green Algae  –
I like Pure Synergy Organics as it is cold processed and stored in a glass bottle.  You can do powder however, it tends to clump unless mixed well into a smoothie.  I recommend the capsules, taken throughout the day and getting the powder in a blend for smoothies and salads.

Blends – Miessence Deep Green, which is a synergistic combination of Chlorella, Spirulina, Wheat and Barley grasses amongst others.  I am an Independent Rep for this brand because the entire line is clean and certified organic.  Their skincare is edible too!
https://www.one.organic/puretemple/en/category/1/skincare

Moringa – Moringa Source raw organic Moringa is a good value with 16oz for $15.99.  Kuli Kuli Organic Pure Moringa Vegetable Powder is 10oz for $24.35 which is higher but I chose this one as the company states that they source the plants in a sustainable way, utilizing growers in a network of farms across the globe.  I want the rainforests to be happy.

ChlorellaAnthony’s organic Chlorella powder is the best price but does not say where the Chlorella is sourced.  $13.00 nets you 8 oz.  I believe the bareoganics Chlorella is the best value, however, because the company assures that the product is raw (not heated where it would lose enzymes and vitamins) and is grown in stainless steel tanks to protect the chlorella from toxic substances and also assure a better flavor.  Blends – If you are looking for a great blend of superfoods, I highly recommend Miessence Deep Green, which is a synergistic combination of Chlorella, Spirulina, Wheat and Barley grasses amongst others.  I am an Independent Rep for this brand because the entire line is clean and certified organic.  Their skincare is edible too!
https://www.one.organic/puretemple/en/category/1/skincare

For those with allergies to Seaweeds or algae or wish to augment with other superfood combinations, another great blend of superfoods, I highly recommend is Essante Earth Greens which is a mix of Barley and Wheat, Kamut grasses, lemongrass, kale, amongst others and does not contain spirulina or chlorella.  I take all of these things in a rotation and do both the powder and the capsules, which are easy to do traveling or on the go.   Because all of their products are wildcrafted or organically grown, I am an Independent Consultant for Essante as well.
www.EssanteOrganics.com/Puretemple 

I appreciate feedback and encourage you to report back on what you are using and how it has helped you.

 

 

Plan B How To Achieve When Life Throws Curveballs

A thing we each commonly share is that sooner or later, life will throw you a curveball you were not expecting.  Whether it’s the yacht or Jaguar needing maintenance,  the inner tube requiring a patch and Pacer engine exploding, or job or relationship loss, stuff will happen that we are in some way not fully and on all levels prepared for.

A friend was sharing his disbelief in how so many of us have day jobs, working for the man rather than for oneself, building up our own business.  I added my 2 cents which were promptly deleted on his post.  But I understand exactly why the majority of us work for the man.  I also totally get why many of us dream of being more in control by owning our own gig and I would love someone to join me and help me share the cool products I represent (see below).

For 26 years I worked at Sprint and made decent money the last decade of it.  Then I was laid off and went to work for ATT as a contractor and making similar money in contracting that paid $45.00 an hour starting out.  This was fantastic, I was working from home which is something I had been doing and wanted to continue doing, I was no longer salary and that meant far better control over my hours and scope of responsibility.  Earning $1800.00 a week and NOT working a minute over 8 hours each day was golden for me.  I actually did put in a few extra hours but that was my choice and I was free to make that up during the week by cutting out early when able to do so. I was not so overloaded as I was 95% of the time at Sprint, so I really had what everybody talks about when they spout on about a work and life balance.  I had that FINALLY!  I was learning something new and just loved my job. I loved my work at Sprint too, just not the long hours I typically put in and at no additional pay.   After months of being new and acclimating, I finally fit into the pecking order.  The team was cohesive except for one guy who was a rat and a troublemaker.  This little dude was on me from day one so I suppose he is pleased as Hawaiian punch right now as they kept him on the project and I was one of the laid-off people.

While working, I continued writing this blog, writing product reviews and answering plant-based lifestyle questions, sharing knowledge from my Hippocrates Health Institute training and selling organic skin, body and home care products as an independent representative of 3 great companies.

I love helping people and sharing why they should go organic, doing facials or helping them with a green detox or supplement but 3 years in, I pay a lot more to keep this blog going and my Independent Rep status,  than what I get paid.  Frankly, I am at a loss as to how I can earn $1800 a week take home pay doing my own gig.  So, yes,  Randy my friend,  I do understand your frustration as well as why folks have their day job, putting so much into that work that sometimes it squeezes out everything else.  Because life happens.  And as a business owner, an entrepreneur, I completely get how freaking hard this is to pull off.  In part, this is because I don’t just follow the money.  No, I fully research and vet what I am suggesting folks buy.  I read the ingredients and assure that there are no toxic substances in the label.  I will only talk about and recommend what I have already vetted as safe.  I price check to see what product between the 3 lines may be cheaper or better for you.  Then I talk about it.  I am not pushy and therefore I have few paying customers and give a lot of free advice out.  This would be why I really miss my day job but also brings us back to why having a plan b and preferably a plan c as well, is critical in life.

You can be filled with all the knowledge and enthusiasm in the world and still be sitting staring at a dwindling bank account.  You may take exquisite care of your vehicle but take it someplace and they put in a part you never needed and you cannot prove that they just took $1600.00 of your money that was utterly unnecessary.    You can never go back to a place that screwed you and you can get another job if you get laid off but it is the in-between, the plan b, that will keep you afloat and calmer when the feces hits the fan.

Back up plans are not always ideal, which is why they are back up and not primary plans.  First, you must exercise a level of control and realize that less can be more.  You compete with yourself and your highest good, not the Jones’s next door.   My neighbor sort of hoards stuff.  He gets most of it for free or really cheap.  But his garage is packed to the gills with stuff he doesn’t use or need.  Learn to let it go.  I just sold my car.  I had 2 and one paid off.  I kept the one paid off.  We have more space now and no car payment.  So whatever your current financial situation, a backup plan is respect and love for yourself. It is also respect and love for your family.

Steps to Creating a Backup Plan:
HELOCs – If you own a home where you have any equity at all, consider getting a HELOC, which is a Home Equity Line Of Credit that you never need to use but just have available in case of emergency.   Unlike a mortgage, in most states, there are no fees for this type of loan other than the interest carried on any balance.

At various times, I have used my HELOC to pay off a primary mortgage, a vehicle, to remodel that home as well as to remodel another home.

When using a HELOC or any other kind of loan system, this is not going to be ideal.  Of course, you can write off the interest on a HELOC at tax time but it is still money lost.  Use with discretion, and don’t be the one making the minimum interest-only payments or you will never get ahead or get the loan paid off.  I make double payments, at least, every month.  My goal is to get the loan totally paid off but also in doubling up on my payments each month, this creates more bandwidth in case I ever must tap into the loan again.

CREDIT – Don’t carry credit card debt.  Pay the balance in full each and every month which will save you money as well as help motivate you to dial it down if you are spending above your means.  If you currently have credit card debt, pay the higher interest rate first and get that knocked out.  Then go to the next highest rate card and so on.  You also want to pay your smallest balance first, depending upon how long that will take you and what the interest rate is that they are charging you in order to create cash flow.  Cash flow is king.  It helps create plan Bs.

Look for 0% interest when you get into a bind and need to extend something out.  We recently had a remodel that ended up being more and then more yet.  I swung some of the fixtures onto a zero for 6 months loan rather than having to pay in full when the bill came in.  At the time, I did not know I was getting laid off so I am very glad now that I planned ahead, just in case.

Savings – When working I loved to move my direct deposit into various accounts so some would be for immediate spending while others were dovetailed for savings.  Having this done automatically helps because even the best of intentions can get derailed otherwise.  Pretend it isn’t there and shortly you will have a nice little nest egg.

Respect For What You Have – Keep your things in good condition so if you tire of them or need to sell things off, they are ready for the next buyer.  From my homes to my cars, everything is in tip-top shape and maintained that way.  This means far less drama when it is time to sell something off.  Recently I sold the Jaguar.  To get it ready for sale simply meant a hose and soap.  It has recently been waxed and the interior leather treated so easy peasy.  My 24-year-old car would need a wax.  That’s it.  Both homes are market ready with the landscape on a regular maintenance schedule.  We rent out the one place but if we were ever in need of selling, it’s ready to go in a nice paying it forward way too (don’t ever forget about Karma).

Keep Your Resume Updated – Don’t ever assume you are safe.  Getting laid off came suddenly and shockingly.  We all tend to stack rank ourselves and I knew I was doing well and was not the troublemaker on the team so it came as a surprise when it happened to me.  Networking and keeping up with connections and a fresh resume takes the edge off.

Learn  New Skills – Look at emerging fields and at other ways you can apply the talents you currently have in a new way.  I’m a project manager, great at the minutia of where all the widgets currently are and where they need to be while making it look easy in front of a customer. These are valuable skills I can apply to anything from a construction or remodel project to implementing an API.  But I also adore animals and recently went through some heavy stuff with our resident Doberman and am currently studying CMT, Canine Massage Therapy to be an animal bodyworker. Like acupuncture, it is an emerging field for our fur kids and I will be one of the few in Dallas doing this a few weeks from now when I am certified.

Consider Blogging – You can become an Amazon Affiliate Marketer or write about your particular passion and gain a following.  For interested parties, check out my Getting Started page.  Just know that blogging takes time and patience to grow a business.  There are so many great niche markets out there to explore.

The Products I directly sell:

Essante –   Organic and Plant-Based Line Coconut water-based

Miessence –  Organic and Plant-Based Line that is Aloe Vera Based

Where I took my life changing training – https://op.hippocratesinst.org/moreinfo/static/34   For the free syllabus Online Life Transformation!

 

 

Great Books About Animal Spirit & Healing

I always find it amusing when people try to differentiate ourselves far and away from the other animals as if we are not in any way similar or on the same playing field.  My husband will talk about ‘our animals’ and I will occasionally remind him that we are animals too.  In my lifetime of being around animals, predominately cats and a few dogs, birds and fish, I have come to the knowledge that they each have reasoning capabilities, a great capacity for love, forgiveness and joy, their own proclivities and desires, social decorums, ways of training others and being part of the family.  No cat you will ever have will be exactly like another.  Their personality differences are infinite snowflakes of uniqueness.  I will never have the capacity to know all animals but am amply blessed to know a few while I am here.  I have come to believe they are here to help us grow in the knowledge of right and wrong, of compassion and grace as well as aiding us in the retention of awe.  Each creature really is awe-inspiring and fearfully made.  It is a humbling responsibility to have a fur child in our family who trusts us on such a deep level to be their advocate through thick and thin, to always look after their best interest.  It is equally humbling to see that they give the very same dedication, if not even more so, to us, their human-animal companions.  I am currently studying CMT, Canine Massage Therapy, and on a progressive training there as I continue to learn more about them and myself.

I recently picked up The above book This is one of those really great books that’s hard to put down once you crack the cover.  Regardless of your religious beliefs, there is something beyond hunks of meat shaped like a cat or a person. That something is the breath of life, the spirit that motivates us behind the mind and body, that same light that fades from our eyes once we are gone.  I have been surrounded by quite a bit of death the last few years and witness how one foot is here on this plane while the other foot is in the netherworld.  People not on any drugs will awake here on this plane and tell you plainly that they were just speaking to deceased friends, relatives, their dog was there to greet them etc.  This morning, a friend of mine passed away.  Prior to Bobby’s death, he saw my best friends dead daughter Jennifer amongst others.  He would awaken here and be disappointed he had not already crossed over the rainbow bridge.    Bobby was ready to go and left us early this morning.  I believe we are all here with plans, with things to do.  But it wasn’t until reading The Spritual Nature Of Animals by Karlene Stange, that I came away with an awareness that they also have plans.  This struck a deep chord in me (see my other canine posts) as Rhett, our resident Doberman and I, have been through some heavy stuff lately which has all helped me to share new information with others to help them as well as set me upon a new career path.

Temple Grandin, upon the death of an animal,  asked in her book Animals Make Us Human, ‘Where do they go?’
She is speaking of the spirit, the light in the eyes, the thing most of us don’t really discuss that we all share, the breath of life that contains the spirit in the temporal body.

I do not advocate the killing of any of our fellow animals but I also realize that not everybody will go vegan.  I would much rather see a return (and saving) of our local farms who make efforts to raise animals humanely, who are in the meat or dairy business as ethically as possible than I ever would want to see what is happening, corporate farms with zero compassion taking over, wiping out our local farmers with their power and might who create substandard fare while creating a living hell on earth for our brethren animals.  Even if you don’t like pigs, perhaps you don’t like their ways or just don’t care, you have to understand they are loyal, fun loving and smarter than most dogs.  Dogs are as smart as that of a 4 or 5-year-old child.  That isn’t what you would call dumb.  The thing with dogs is that their emotional intelligence remains that of a 4 or 5-year-old too, regardless of how old they actually are.  Some humans remain at an infant state too but we’ll move off that topic.  ♥  While we may lose patience with an adult human acting a fool, it is very important to absorb at your core that no matter how smart your fur kid is, his emotional intelligence is that of a 4-year-old kid.  It is never going to mature beyond this so extend the necessary grace when that 4-year-old chews something up stressing out when you work late.  You’re the adult in this relationship, always.  Put things away, provide toys and other healthy distractions or own the consequences with grace.  It is true that as an animal ages, coupled with consistent,  firm but kind training or mentoring as I like to call it, good socialization as you would your human kids, they settle in and are far better behaved as they age which can give off the illusion that they are mature.  Yes but no…there will always be that child within and God bless this because we need reminding of awe and humility and innocence every day.

 Dr. Goldsteins The Nature Of Animal Healing is one of my reference books.  I learned about alternative heartworm treatments here as well as how bad all these annual shots are for our fur babies.  I haven’t had any shots since I was a child and I feel fine.  Why on earth do we ply our creatures with annual insults?  Also, I did not realize until last year that most of these shots, for us and them, contain mercury and other toxins in their mix.  Unless it is necessary, such as an area where Parvo is common or what have you, why put them deliberately in harm’s way?  Be judicious.  This book will help guide you there.


The book above is also a great book on Holistic approaches to wellness.  Many people argue this is silly woo woo stuff that doesn’t work, however, I have experienced first hand the healing of various homeopathic medicines and can attest that they are indeed effective.

Another fabulous reference book is Dr. Pitcairn’s Complete Guide to Natural Health For Dogs & Cats.  This book teaches natural herbs and techniques, as well as recipes for home cooked meals.  Also, you can look up symptoms and diseases to help guide you through many situations.

What animal lovers library would be completed without James Herriot All Creatures Great & Small? Or perhaps the whole set, below.

Please post your own stories and comments, I love feedback and thanks for reading. ♥