Before you start reading this post, I must say there may be TMI involved!………………….
I stood up from the table after a wonderful dinner with friends and something hit me in my lower back like a jolt of lightening. I barely was able to walk out of the restaurant. I think several people thought I had a few too many drinks. All I wanted was to just get home. My friend drove while I pretended I wasn’t hurting by trying to make nice conversation. I was ready to scream or cry but didn’t want to embarrass my self. After pulling up to my house, I was greeted very quickly by my husband due to my phone call asking for help. Well, I thought they would be able to help me walk in but the pain kept shooting in my back every time I tried to stand up. I ended up crawling all the way up the garage steps, through the kitchen and into the soft welcoming carpet of our bedroom. Oh goodness, all that was going through my brain was please God, help me find a position that didn’t hurt. While my husband and daughter stared down at me in helplessness fear, I kept moaning and moving to try to lessen the pain. I remember saying, this is like labor all over again and I want these jolts of terrible pain to stop. As I was trying to bear the pain of the muscle spasms, there was another type of inconvenience that was starting to bother me, my bladder. It was getting really full after all the water I drank during dinner. OK, well maybe the 2 glasses of wine too! :) As I lay on the bedroom floor, I turned my head to look into the bathroom and saw the toilet so terribly far away from me. I had no idea how I would get there but really needed to desperately. I contemplated for about 30 minutes whether or not it was more painful to have the carpet cleaned or make it to the toilet. I decided to see if I could roll over on top my stomach and just scoot or crawl. Some how I needed to pee one way or another. Needless to say, I finally made it to the toilet with lots of help. Now, the next question was how were we all going to get me to a sitting position on this potty? I decided to put away any feelings of embarrassment and as a team of three, we were successful in my relief. Yay!!!! Now getting to the bed was my next goal and soon to be achievement. I knew the crawling and scooting method worked so we gave it a try, and it took about 10 more minutes but I finally made it to the bed, pj’s on and a heating pad located under my lower back. We were all three tired from this hour ordeal and I know my family were so relieved to finally get me in a comfortable position. If I could stop the jolts of pain, I knew I could finally rest and maybe get some sleep. By this time my daughter had retreated to her room, soon to find out she was posting on Facebook about her old decrepit mother and how I needed prayers. Well, she didn’t really call me old or decrepit, that’s just how I felt. Wonder what we did before social media to spread stories with in minutes?
I had this mind set that Chinese medicine was like voodoo medicine until I had so much pain I would try about anything to make it better. After my good friend recommended acupuncture I decided to call the very next morning and make an appointment. I was a little nervous and worried about the needles hurting. Oh goodness, what a wonderful experience at Dr. Ly’s office at “Jackson Chinese Medicine“. I was so wrong to be worried. I didn’t feel any pain at all but sure felt relaxed and actually fell asleep for a bit. After the first procedure I didn’t feel tight any more and after the night I saw a huge difference in my pain level dropping tremendously. Not only was he very professional, he was so personable and spent a good amount of time talking and educating me. Thanks to one of my good friends for recommending him. They not only did acupuncture on my lower back they did Moxibustion, Cupping and Electrical stimulation as well.
- Moxibustion: Often used in conjunction with the needle treatment. During Moxibustion, an herbal stick is used to heat the needles. This gives additional stimulation to the pressure points allowing the patient to heal more quickly. Most patients find this procedure very soothing.
- Cupping: Suction cups are often used for a procedure called, cupping, to promote better circulation to a particular area. When these round cups are placed on the skin, it will help bring new blood flow to the area in addition to freeing the meridian of any blocked energy. Sometimes patients will experience slight redness or bruising from this procedure. This is normal and will clear up within 3 to 5 days. Primarily used for pain conditions, patients will usually see a significant improvement with this procedure.
- Electrical Stimulation: Tens units are often hooked up to some of the needles on key pressure points for additional stimulation. The electrical stimulation units are much like the ones used by physical therapists. In addition to stimulating the pressure points, the units help the body to produce more endorphins, a natural chemical which fights pain and promotes better health.
There are 12 pathways of energy, known as meridians, which run along the human body. Each meridian has a number of pressure points which support different areas of the body. After thousands of years, practitioners of Chinese medicine have discovered the various pressure points, and their healing benefits when stimulated.
Ever have the Nutty Super Grain at your local smoothie store? I have come up with my own gluten free, dairy free healthy version which turned out awesome. I had to share my creation. My husband is so in love with this and it sure saves us a whole lot of money.
1 cup sweetened almond milk (I love the Califia Farms brand)
1 frozen banana
1 tablespoon cacao (if you like dark chocolate, you could add a few dark chocolate chips as well)
1 to 2 tablespoons local pure honey
2 tablespoons gluten free brown rice protein powder
2 tablespoons any nut butter of your choice (I like using my homemade almond butter, my husband’s favorite is peanut butter)
1/4 cup fresh apple juice (I prefer Fuji apples)
2 tablespoons freshly ground flax seed
1 to 1 1/2 cups crushed ice
I add all ingredients except honey & ice in a Nutri-Bullet and mix.
I then add the honey so it won’t stick to the side & the ice until it’s at the consistency of your liking.
I have added a pinch of Himalayan salt when using all natural nut butters that don’t have salt already added.
What a great idea, a necklace that not only smells great but also has a healing power too. As I did some research online and was shopping online on Etsy.com, I found some diffuser charms that are to be worn as necklaces and diffused while wearing them. I couldn’t resist, I purchased several of them.
I wanted to make some type of chain to hold the charm and finally came up with one using bead weaving (my favorite hobby). I actually used a spiral stitch with left over beads from other projects. I added a lobster claw clasp to the bottom so I could change out the charm. I thought it actually turned out quite nice. Now I need to make some more!!! I used a portion of a cotton ball and added a few drops of “Blend for Women” on it and dropped it in the locket. I can still smell the wonderful fragrance and that was a few weeks ago.
Close up of my finished Necklace
The finished Necklace
Spiral Stitch directions
I decided to actually become a Wellness Advocate about a year ago so I could get some discount of all the EO’s I was purchasing. There are so many ways of using Essential Oils and so many benefits along with a necklace charm diffuser. You can apply them topically on the skin, inhale through the nose or mouth and also you can ingest some by mouth.
Another favorite use is through the use of diffusers I have through out my home. I love mixing different EO’s and coming up with my own fragrance recipes depending on the time of year.
Here are some easy ideas for your diffuser:
During Flu season, Protective Blend.
When you have a cold, Respiratory Blend.
During that time of month, Blend for Woman.
Christmas time, special Holiday Blend.
Stressful time, Calming Blend.
In 1977/78 I lived in Europe for a year with my family and was introduced to Nutella. They used it as a spread on toast and sweet breads for breakfast. Oh my…..what a wonderful thing. I only got to enjoy it for that one year because we moved back to the states. I remember the first time seeing it on the grocery store isle in the states and I couldn’t wait to taste that delicious nutty chocolate spread again after so many years. Now, it’s one of my and my daughters favorite snacks. Since my food choices have changed in the last year, Nutella is a big NO NO, which makes me very sad. I decided to try to make my own Nutella and make it nutritious!!! This was a challenge that I was determined to do so I could have my nutty snack again. I searched the internet for great recipes and finally after experimenting, came up with one that I absolutely love and wanted to share with you.
After I made it a few nights ago, I realized that since I’m gluten free now, I didn’t have any bread at home to spread it on. I had been wanting to try banana ice cream for ever and thought, what a great thing to put together, my homemade Nutella and banana ice cream. OMG…..this will be my go to healthy snack for sure. Here are both the recipes:
Nutty Natural Nutella:
1 cup Hazelnuts (roasted on 250º for 15 minutes, until the skins start to come off)
1 1/2 Tablespoon Coconut Oil (measured melted)
3 Tablespoons Cacao Powder (you can also use organic cocoa powder)
1/8 Teaspoon Sea Salt
1/2 cup Canned Coconut Cream
1/3 cups Organic Grade B Maple Syrup
1/2 Tablespoon Vanilla (I used my home made vanilla)
1 to 2 Tablespoons Local Honey (optional)
Add your hazelnuts to your food processor. Process until you start to have a consistency like peanut butter. You may have to scrape the sides down a few times. While it’s mixing, add your Coconut Oil and mix well. Stop to add your cacao powder, salt and canned coconut cream (you can use canned coconut milk as well, just make sure it’s full fat and put in the fridge over night) and mix. While it’s mixing pore in your maple syrup and vanilla. Mix until it’s all mixed in and you have a smooth thick texture. I added 1 to 2 tablespoons of honey at this point as an added sweetener and to help it not be as thick. I wanted it to pore onto my ice cream. You may want to keep it thicker to use as a spread.
Nutty Natural Nutella Ice Cream:
2 Banana’s cut up frozen
4 Tablespoons Home made Nutty Natural Nutella (see above recipe)
Cut up 2 banana’s and place in a freezer bag and freeze for a few hours. After frozen, add them to your food processor and blend until creamy. You may have to scrape the sides down a few times. Add your Nutella and mix until smooth. (You can play with the amount depending on how chocolaty you want your ice cream) Put it into a container and put back in the freezer. If you want soft serve consistency, only freeze for about 5 minutes. If you want it like ice cream, freeze it longer. I froze mine over night. I pored the remaining home made Nutella on top but you could top it with your favorite item like carob chips, nuts, or berries. Hope you enjoy as much as I did.
I’m a creative being at the core of my heart and soul. Doing something with my hands and being creative is something my soul needs and desires. It doesn’t matter if its bead weaving, drawing, coloring, crocheting, painting, gardening, cooking or anything crafty. It is God’s gift He has given me.
I’ve had several people ask me if I sell any of my work. My usual response is, I just like to give them as gifts. Thinking about this inquiry over the years, has made me really ponder on why I don’t sell my creative work very often. The first time I sold a painting was way back 30 years ago when I was in High School. Placing 1st in an art contest gave me an opportunity to take a summer art class of all types of mediums. My first water color attempt was a small-scale painting of a cute little bird. A gentleman came in offering to buy this little painting of mine. I was so excited someone wanted to actually pay me for my talent but really didn’t want to part with it. I was torn inside but sold it anyway. The thought of that little bird painting has popped in my mind at different times over the years, making me wonder where it may have ended up. It was like a part of me and my talent vanishing into thin air. When I make a decision to give something that I have made as a gift, I have a different sensation. It’s like I’m giving some of my self, love and time to another being. That is what gives me so much pleasure. I’m involved not only in choosing who I give to but what I give as well. Selling a piece doesn’t give me that same feeling.
Some people go to therapy sessions with a psychologist but I use these creative times as my healing process. It feels like at times I go to a far away place floating free for a little bit and all of a sudden not only have I created something, I also have such a refreshed sense of well being at the same time. It’s a very spiritual experience that is hard to describe. I truly believe our gifts from Him actually bring us and others closer to Him.
Anyone else use vanilla extract all the time? Why not make your own and have an unlimited supply at your hands? Well, its so easy to make. Here is the recipe:
4 cups Vodka (Rum or Bourbon)
12 Madagascar Bourbon Vanilla Beans
1 Bormioli Rocco Giara Clear Glass Bottle With Stopper, 33 3/4 oz.
I split the vanilla beans but leave the ends intact slightly and drop them into the jar.
I then pore the vodka all the way to the top and seal the lid. I store it in a dry, cool, dark area (pantry) for about 6 to 8 weeks shaking it about once a week. The longer you leave it the stronger it gets. I then use the Nut Milk Bag and strain the extract before I transfer it to my working small bottle.
I have a bottle going at all times just refilling both my large and small bottles when they get low.