Monday, February 15, 2010

LW - Clean Eating

Blessings, Darlings!

Bug parts! Dirt! Pesticides! Herbicides! What's in what you're eating?

Now, most of you already know this stuff: the processed foods you eat are allowed to have, and do have, some amounts of nasty stuff in them. Bug parts in your ketchup. Gods know what in your hot dogs. Pesticides and whatever in your produce.

What are the easiest ways to eat cleaner?

Buying organic is the easiest way (just because it's easier than growing your own all year round).

One of the easiest approaches is to replace the items you eat the MOST with organic versions. That way immediately most of your food is 'cleaner'.

Another way is to see what foods tend to be the most contaminated, and when you buy THOSE get organic versions. There is a list available at

What I just did - this last weekend - was split half a pastured, grass fed, no hormones/antibiotic raised steer with friends. Five of us split it, getting 1/10 of a steer each - about 71 pounds. Paid about $230 dollars for meat and processing, slightly over $3 a pound - a great price for ANY beef.

Of course, any meat eating is optional. A fact I've not convinced my husband and son of yet. I'm still working on that.

Frondly, Fern

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

LW Monday on Tuesday: Getting Unstuck

Computers Freeze. Writers Get Writer’s Block. People Get Stuck.

Everyone becomes stuck every now and again. Some decisions are hard to make so keep getting put off. Some goals start to seem so far away and hard to reach that progress towards them grinds to a halt. Sometimes a first step seems huge and insurmountable.

Fortunately, there are ways to get unstuck.

I get stuck most often on tasks I just hate to do, for whatever reason. I hate doing dishes, as just one example. It is easy for me to avoid doing them, thus letting them pile up and becoming an even bigger pile of hatred. But a friend of mine, with issues of her own, taught me that ‘you can do any task – ANY task – for 20 minutes.” Therefore, when I find myself stuck, I set a time for 20 minutes and have at it. It may not finish the entire task (it does with dishes, but if the task was doing taxes it wouldn’t), but it will take a bite out of one or more steps in that task. It will lift the burden, and help get you off of ‘full stop’.

(It also works as an ‘artificial deadline’, for those who feel that they do their best work when racing a deadline. You can apply ‘artificial deadlines’ at will, too.)

You might have to repeat this approach over and over again to get some tasks done. You might find that, having done the first 20 minutes, you can keep going. If so …. go for it! - assuming you have time free from other scheduled tasks.

Did you notice that I mentioned “steps in that task”? Sometimes we get stuck because we have a big task ahead of us and we haven’t taken the time to think it thru’, plan the steps, and then go forth and execute the plan.

What’s hot in this planning area right now is ‘mind mapping’ – a visual approach to planning as opposed to linear list making planning. Really, either approach works. All I’m suggesting is that you DO plan your work, break it down into measurable and finishable steps, then take those steps.

Oh, I mentioned “writer’s block” in the title. I should specifically address that. When faced with it – write something else. Best would be another part of that article or story. Or plot something else. Or write some other article or story. Usually you are only blocked on the one thing you have been trying to write. Don’t let it stop you from writing in the time you have to write in.

The last way around being stuck that I want to talk about today is …. Hitting the reset button. Turn away from what you have been trying to do, officially. Walk away for a while. Do something else.

Do this ONCE, and for a limited time. Then go back to the task at hand. Don’t let this be a crutch that you use to keep away from the unloved task.

Bottom line: there will be times you get stuck. There are ways around being stuck. Use them; don’t let being stuck use you. You are in charge of your life, not your likes, dislikes, fears, boredom, what have you.

Frondly, Fern

Delay in posting

Blessings, Darlings!

This week's post on Life Wellness is a bit delayed - electricity has been a problem. We're in DC, experiencing the Snowpocalypse. I'll post on THAT sometime, too.

Frondly, Fern

Monday, February 1, 2010

LW Monday: Eating

Blessings, Darlings!

Last week I posted on dealing with what's eating you - this week I'm posting on what you're eating. I meant to post on time management, but I didn't get around to writing that (ba dum dum!).

I'm a pretty typical American when it comes to eating, unfortunately. More meat than I need, more fat, more calories, more refined foods, more sugars/sweeteners. Which means I look like a pretty typical fat-assed American, too.

So it's time for me to make some dietary changes. Starting immediately.

Diet is one area where we get to make choices multiple times a day. And a 'change' can be as small as making sure to get a half cup serving of a veggie or as large as cutting out gluten or meat or nightshade products.

I tend towards the smaller changes myself, and those changes are the focus of this series. Coincidence? Not!

So, looking at some smaller easier changes we all can make, a sample list is:
Add one serving of fruit or vegetables to every meal
Have half of all grain serving whole grain instead of white grain.
Cut out deep fried foods.
Cut down on meat - some folks do meatless Mondays.
Replace one or more serving of red meat a week with a fatty fish - sushi over steak.
Cut out sodas.
Have a healthy snack an hour before lunch and/or dinner, so you aren't famished and can make better food choices at those meals.

Now, how to manifest these changes? Some ways include:
Planning meals can help.
A well stocked freezer can help - that's where my sushi fish comes from.
Pick up a bag each of apples, oranges, and bananas every week.
I find that buying pre-mixed salad greens helps me eat more salads.
I cut a container full of celery sticks once a week for my husband. He still used bleu cheese dressing on them, but it replaces his afternoon chips/salami/cheese salty snacks.

Clearly, I've just scratched the surface on options for healthier eating. And they ARE small changes. But, for example, the 'average American' eats only 3.5 servings of fruits and veggies a day rather than the minimum recommeded 5 per day. Getting up to 5 servings a day more than makes your 11% increase in healthier living (it's a 42.8% increase, in fact).

Go forth and be wonderful!

Frondly, Fern