Final Countdown…



It’s almost here! Check back tonight and then tell me what you think of the new website! You can be my personal debuggers.

Until then, here are some Dalai highlights from the past week:

* Swear Jar is up to $23

* I made the most amazing raw brussel sprout and kale salad that you are going to die over – I’ll post after Spring Break!

* Dalai T asked how a baby comes out of the tummy and I told him “doctors cut them out.” I’m not proud of myself.

* Dalai Dan went shopping Sunday: Captain Crunch, Oreos, Pringles, Fruity Snacks, Trix Yogurt, and Lunchables. It’s no wonder they prefer him.

* I just bought the exact pair of white jeans with ankle zippers that I owned in 8th grade.

* I just started reading The Passion Test and I’m loving it!

* I somehow got roped into doing a karaoke dance performance for charity that requires me to memorize 87 moves, including the clock, the jerk and jazz squares.

* My legs saw their first sunlight in 6 months yesterday…until my daughter had to ask me why “marks” (aka veins) all over them.

* In 4 days we leave for Disney World! Kids are out of their minds with excitement. I am frightened to put on a bathing suit…with my marks and all…

I am excited, nervous, insecure, thrilled and petrified all at the same time.

I mentioned in my Personal Lows and Highs of 2011 that I was working on a new website. My current site is a free platform using WordPress. I made it and managed it myself for long enough. It was desperately needing more functionality and a personal feel.

Working with Tilpro has been a delight (maybe not for them! I am slow as cold molasses) It has been such a learning process. I am in awe of you computer people out there. How do you keep up with all of the changes, products and plug-ins out there? I can’t even keep track of my cel phone.

So, SOMETIME this week, we will finally be going live with it! Enough stalling on my part. I have to get over “It’s not perfect” or “I like hers better than mine” and “But I don’t have my reference page done yet!”

It’s not set in stone, Dalai. You can keep tweaking and adding, so lighten up. (This is my new mantra: lighten up and enjoy the ride)

For those of you already subscribing, I am hoping we don’t lose you. If you don’t here from me after a few days, come check back and re-subscribe. I’d hate to miss any of you amazing people! You will also have an option to subscribe to every post or a weekly newsletter. That is exciting, I know, for all of you wanting to cut down on your emails!

Here is what you will notice right away:

1. Home Page – My home page will give a newcomer a much better feel for what I’m about and allow them to get a quick glimpse of different articles. You can keep coming here and clicking on the articles you want to read OR you can read them in old-fashioned scrolling blog format on the Blog Page.

2. Blog Page – Notice that right after the ABOUT page is a page called BLOG. Go here if you like to read it chronologically, one right after the other, like you have been.

3. New Categories – I tightened up the categories a bit. Hope this doesn’t cause any problems, but I didn’t think I needed a category for my every thought. Let me know if you see anything funny 🙂

4. Share Buttons – Hopefully you will find it easier to spread the Dalai all over the Universe.

5. Print Recipe – YIPPEE! I now have a print recipe button! But, I have not populate all of my old recipes yet (they want be to wait until it goes live so I don’t lose any efforts) and will be working on that after the launch.

Can I ask a favor? If you see wacky things, are disappointed in something, or have a great idea of how I can improve on things, PLEASE send me an email or comment! I completely trust you and want to make this site easy and enjoyable for you. All of this is for you and I want nothing more than make this website like a home away from home. Thanks for al of your support, guys! Send good launching thoughts my way!

Foto Friday

I think you will see exactly why I HAD to post this video a friend sent me…

Have an incredible weekend filled with laughter!

We could argue over Phthalates.  Disagree about estrogen receptors.  Parabens, Sodium Laureth Sulfate, 1,4 dioxane, synthetic fragrances?  I’m sure someone out there will fight on their behalf.

You could make yourself crazy reading all the literature.  There are plenty of studies supporting booths sides of the argument.  So, why go there?

I’ll tell you one thing you can’t argue with: that natural, organic skin care products are bad for you.

So, if you KNOW that natural skin care products that avoid these chemicals are safe.

And you KNOW that you can find them easily at the store or online.

And if they DON’T even cost anymore than department store products…

Then why not use them?

It is like this:  there are two bags of dog poop.  One bag is totally safe and 100% guaranteed to not break.  The other bag is promoted to be safe, but studies say there is a chance it will break.

Which bag are you going to choose?

That’s what I thought…

So, if you don’t want that cr&p touching your hands, why would you want it to touch your face?

($14 in the swear jar and counting)

I was talking to Terri from Nature of Beauty and developer of Pit Potion (a natural deodorant I love) about our favorite beauty products. She said if she had to pick one it would be her Clarisonic face brush, and I completely concurred.

It got me thinking of my absolute must-have items.  The things I CANNOT  live without.

I can live without deodorant.  I can make it without mascara.  I don’t need a toothbrush (jk)…

But, I MUST HAVE these 10 things on a daily basis!

1. Lemons

I go through a bag of lemons a week.  I drink warm lemon water in the morning, put lemon juice in my tea, add them to my fresh green juices for flavor and a natural preservative…I just can’t live without them.

2. My Journal

I love going back and reading my creepy dreams.  If dreams are are a gateway to the soul them I am certifiably bonkers.

3. Vitamix

How did I ever blend before I owned this?  I bet I could blend a rock into my smoothies and not tell the difference.

4. Juicer

It’s a love-hate relationship.  If it could just clean itself.

5. Lulu Lemon pants

Otherwise I’d be naked because I wear them most of the day, looking like complete dog’s a$$ with sweat encrusted hair until I finally decided to take a shower about bedtime.   My daughter asks me if I’m going to a party when I wear jeans.

7. Digestive Enzymes

I’ve been using them (relying on them!) more and more as I’ve gotten older. Everything in my body seem to need a little extra help after I turned 39.

8. Clarisonic Skin Care Brush

It’s like a vibrator for your face, people.  It rocks.

9. My Luvsac Bean Bag Chair

It is gigantic and  skwooshy like a love seat-sized marshmallow.  I sometimes curl up on it and take a nap.  Heaven.

10. A cup of hot tea

There is nothing better than wrapping my hands around a warn cup tea and slowly sipping in the flavors. There seems to be tea for my every mood.

What about you? What is ONE thing you COULD NOT live without?

I hope you all are liking the 21-day Meditation Challenge! I have been loving it (I especially love Deepak’s voice) and only have the criticism that I wish they were longer!


Many of you have told your thoughts to me personally, but put them down in the comments so others get an idea of what it is like!


In the mean time, I was thinking that when the 21 days are over, you may be wondering how to keep up your practice? If you enjoy guided meditation, here are three ways you can get your hands on FREE audio files!


1. Podcasts


Did you know that there are dozens and dozens of FREE guided meditations through the iTunes?


Search for meditation in iTunes. This will bring up all possible forms of meditation, so you will want to filter by media type by selecting “podcasts.”


You can listen right there, find your favorites and download them, and even subscribe to the podcast and get updates when new meditations are available.


Here are some links to a few good iTunes podcasts:


Meditation Oasis


The Meditation Podcast


Meditation station


Dr. Miller


2. Phone Apps


Did you know there were dozens of free meditation iPhone, iPad and Android apps? Many companies offer free “basic” apps, so you can try them out before purchasing their expanded version. I LOVE having a few on my phone for carpool line, the airplane, and even just laying on my couch when I have a few minutes!


Here are some good FREE apps. If you like them, you can consider paying a dollar or two for an expanded app.





Take a Break – This simple app gives you a 7 and 13 minute meditation where you can select your preference for nature or music backgrounds.





Brainwave Tuner – This interesting app gives you a taste of brainwave meditation, where specific tones (no voice) are sent to the left and right ears (must wear headphones) to achieve the same brain patterns as a deep meditation.





Relax and Sleep Well – This free app is a 27 minute meditation by renowned author and clinical hypnotherapist, Glenn Harrold. It gives you a good taste of his voice and style.






Relax Melodies – This cool free app gives you the ability to customize your own ambiance music/noises for your meditation by selecting a combination of up to 10 sounds (you can even alter each sounds volume). There are no voices, so perfect for a self guided meditation.



3. Websites


There are HUNDREDS of websites out there with free guided meditation files to listen to. They key is finding the voice and style that suites you.


Meditation Oasis


Fragrant Heart


My Thought Coach


Magical Living


There you go! Try some of them out and tell me what you think!


Swear Jar

It’s that time of year again: Lent. Last year I wrote this article, A Skeptics Lent Reflections, because I have always had an aversion to giving things up for Lent. I feel like someone out there needs to break the rules and I’ve always been happy to take that role.

Looks like this year may be an exception…

So, I was in the car with a bunch of kids and my nephew told us that he was giving up candy (My niece promptly replied she wasn’t giving up anything. My soul-sister, that girl…so proud) and Thomas piped in telling the entire car that I needed to give up swearing for Lent.


I figured if my 10-year-old is parenting me, I may need to step it up a notch. So, I made a deal that I will put a $1 in this jar every time I say a bad word. I’m on the honor system when they are not around. At the end of lent, they can divvy up the money amongst themselves.

It’s only been a day and I’ve already had to pay $3.00.

I think the kids were being extra bad just to make me swear. D&mn them.

I’ve already told you how I like to make myself a healthy “salad” on Sunday that will last me all week. Keeps me from panicking when I’m hungry AND in a hurry since there is something nutritious waiting for me.

I’ve also already told you about my newest obsession: Pinterest. I think the entire US is on Pinterest by now, but if you are new to this site, look at it as an online vision board or scrapbook. Instead of clipping out the article, photo, or recipe (who clips anymore, anyway? It’s all online!) and tucking it in a file or on your bulletin board, you “Pin it” with a click of your mouse to your online “boards.”

I have boards for photos, recipes, books, inspirational quotes, brilliant ideas…

Once you pin your photo, you can click on it and it will bring you back to the original article or recipe. It is so easy to keep track of those great ideas you come across! I used to email myself good looking recipes and keep them in an email folder, but this is much easier…

Which brings me to my Wild Rice and Lentil Salad…because it has been on my Pinterest board to try and I finally did!

It ROCKS! It is hearty and chewy and crunchy and yummy. I altered the original recipe, and mine is much better 🙂

Wild Rice and Lentil Salad

  • 1/2 cup dry wild rice
  • 1/2 cup Edamame
  • 1/2 cup lentils
  • 1/2 cup loosely packed chopped cilantro
  • 1/4 cup broken walnuts (or any nuts, really!)
  • 1 Tablespoon rice vinegar
  • 2 Tablespoons fresh lime juice (about 1/2 lime)
  • 1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger
  • 1 Tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 Tablespoon sesame oil
  • 2 Tablespoons of another type of oil (I used walnut)
  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt


Cook the wild rice in 1 1/4 cup of water for time on package (about 50 minutes). Drain and cool.

Boil the lentil for about 20 minutes (you don’t want them too soft and mushy). Drain and cool.

Cook/thaw edamame.

Whisk dressing ingredients.

Put rice, lentils, edamame, nuts and cilantro in bowl and toss with dressing.  Add additional salt or pepper to taste!  Eat chilled!

Another amazing and successful Karma Club meeting was held last week at my house. This time, I invited physician and 30+ year practicing iridologist, Ron Logan, to come and talk about iridology and give individual assessments.

I have a really healthy group of friends, but each of them had slight weaknesses. Some of my friends got new information, but interestingly, many were told of weaknesses in areas that they were, in fact, having problems (some already diagnosed by doctors). It was very interesting, to say the least…

What is iridology?

Iridology is one of the oldest forms of alternative medicine, dating back over 2,000 years. It is even thought to be talked about in the bible, “The eye is the lamp of the body. If your eyes are good, your whole body will be full of light,” Matthew, chapter 6, verse 22.

Iridology is the scientific practice of using markings on the eye’s iris to reveal the patients bodily weaknesses. Similar to the idea of Chinese medicine or reflexology: one body part (like the hand or foot, but in the case, the eye) mirrors the entire body. In iridology, specific points on the eye correspond to different bodily systems since the entire central nervous system feeds into the eye in an organized fashion. Thus, small markings on the iris, sometimes undetectable to the naked eye, give the practitioner clues into the body’s weakest parts.

An eye with a good constitution

How can you use iridology?

There are over 10,000 iridologists in Europe, compared to 1,000 in the United States. In Europe, it is widely accepted and used to identify a person’s general constitution as a starting point for diagnosis. As Dr. Logan explained, iridology cannot “diagnose” diseases like cancer but can clue into weaknesses that may lead to greater problems in the future. If you have a weakness in your adrenals (like me!), for example, them you can incorporate stress reducing practices like meditation and support your adrenals with natural supplements.

A couple fun things you can check out for yourself are:

– Does your eye have a dark rim around the outer edge? This indicates your skin has a hard time detoxifying. You may not sweat through your pours well so toxins can build up. Solution? Try body brushing.

– Do you see light rings (like the age rings of a tree trunk) in your eye? These are “stress rings” that occur from stress and tension. (I had two! No wonder I meditate…)

– Do you see a yellowing over your eye? This is chemical build up (front things like sulfur preservatives) that settle over your real eye color. Apparently a super clean diet and detoxifying can lighten the eye an show its true color underneath. Crazy!

Should I run out and find an iridologist?

First of all, it would be hard to find one! Iridology is a fascinating alternative medicine practice, but there are other methods that are easier to find and just as or even more effective.

Acupuncture, for example, is older than iridology and finds weaknesses or “blockages” by listening to your pulse and looking at your tongue. Acupuncture has been tested and studied in the greater medical arena. Even Mayo Clinic uses acupuncture! So, it is much easier to find a really good practitioner.

An eye with a poor constitution

Bottom line, there are many amazing ways to uncover our body’s messages! Iridology is another awesome example of how the body is divinely designed to give us answers. If there is a seasoned iridologist in your area, you may find it really interesting and informative. Just keep an open mind to all forms of medicine and you will find one that is perfect for YOU.

If you are in Kansas city and are interested being on the Karma Club email list, send me a personal message and I’ll get you on the list!

After having an interesting discussion with a friend in the medical field, who’s opinions comes mainly from a “Western Medicine” perspective, I realized that most people think that I am anti-western medicine. I think it is interesting that people who embrace other forms of healing arts often seen as opposing the modern medical system. As if the two cannot be blended…

Every practice has its time and place. When a friend was fighting for her life, infection throughout her body, wester medicine saved her! Accupucture wasn’t going to bring her back, homeopathy wasn’t going to solve her problems. She is on her way to a full recovery because of the amazing advances in modern medicine!

Our modern medical system is brilliant for accidents, traumas, emergencies, and dire situations.

But, it is NOT good at uncovering and dealing with the root cause of disease. When our bodies are out of balance, a whole host of things can occur like allergies, auto-immune diseases, thyroid problems, headaches, digestive disorders, sleep disorders, muscular-skeletal problems…the list is endless! Generally speaking, our pharmaceutical products dampen the symptoms without dealing with the genesis of the condition.

Alternative medicine is like a journey to the truth

The foundation of ancient medicine is listening to the body and discovering what it is trying to tell us. Often the answers are simple BUT they require a lifestyle change. They require us to believe in our own body’s ability to heal itself. And, most importantly, they require our patience.

It took you years of eating, thinking, and doing things to get you into this “dis-ease” so it is going to take some time to reprogram yourself into wellness.

We are so lucky to live in a country that allows access to ALL medical genres. We can blend them beautifully, using parts of practices that resonate with us. There is no absolute answer. No right or wrong. We just have to listen to our body’s messages and open to exploring different paths to the truth.

Look out for my next post, which will talk about a fascinating, ancient medical practice: Iridology! We had an iridologist (who has been practicing for over 30 years!) come and speak to our Karma Club and it was eye-opening. (couldn’t help myself)