February 2021 Spirit Animal Tarot Predictions

Message from Light Beings: Now that you have worked out your purpose, the creative forces will come through you and be available for you to explore and start to paint a more detailed picture of what that will look like. Ideas and creative energy will free flow. We are still in winter at this time so this card still calls us to work with ourselves in bringing our ideas and vision to life. This month the energies will feel very light and infinitely abundant. During this time you may find yourself having great revelations and insights into your own journey that will add to the positive forward momentum. Things from the past that may not have made sense or stuck energy that wasn’t processed all the way may suddenly be transformed into some creative insight. The vision here is of the beautiful swan on the water, ruffling its feathers majestically, recognizing it’s ability to fly but gliding gracefully on the water’s surface, reflecting on life with new eyes.

Click here to see the predictions for the whole year of 2021.

Please comment your insights and questions below!

If you are interested in doing a past/present/future Animal Spirit Reading with Ananda please submit your $50 payment below and you’ll be contacted to set up a time for either a phone or zoom call.

Gluten Free/Dairy Free Meal Prep Menu: Easy to Digest

1/29/21

This week’s menu is going to be easy on the stomach to help soothe the digestive system. The menu is always made dairy free and gluten free. You can always substitute a meat alternative if you are vegetarian or vegan.

Breakfast:

Protein Shake

600 calories

         1 bunch bananas

         2 containers of berries

         1 jar peanut butter

         Protein powder

         1 container of coconut/soy/almond milk

         Chia seeds

Directions: Freeze the berries so you don’t have to use ice in the smoothie. When you are ready to have your smoothie, throw everything (1 banana, 1/2 cup of berries, 2tbs peanut butter, 2 scoops protein powder, 1 tsp of chia seeds, milk as needed) in a blender and blend until smooth.

Snacks

Popcorn: 106 Calories/Serving

Humus & Red Pepper: about 55 calories per serving of 2 tbsp hummus with red pepper slices.

Dinner

Chicken & Wild Rice Soup

529 calories

Original Recipe here: https://www.allrecipes.com/recipe/18448/chicken-wild-rice-soup-i/?internalSource=hub%20recipe&referringContentType=Search

1 Rotisserie Chicken
2 Tbsp Coconut Oil

1 onion

½ cup celery 

½ cup sliced carrots

½ lb. fresh sliced mushrooms

¾ cup almond/coconut flour

2 cups cooked wild rice

1 cup slivered almonds (or other nut)

1 can coconut milk

Seasonings to taste:

Curry powder

Salt

Mustard Powder

Black Pepper

Directions:

  1. Make the bone broth. Remove all the meat from the rotisserie chicken. Put the bones in a large crock pot. Slice up the onion, carrot, and celery for the soup above and set aside the amounts needed for the soup. Take what’s left of the above veggies and put it in with the crock pot. For reference, you should have a handful of onion, carrot, and celery in the mix. Add a heap of salt & pepper to the pot as well as a dash of apple cider vinegar (about 2 tbs). The vinegar will help pull all the good stuff from the bones. Fill the crock pot with water to the brim. Set this on low for 24 hours. (If you are vegetarian/vegan substitute for a veggie broth)
  2. The next day, strain out the bones and veggies from the crock pot. You now have a delicious bone broth for your soup. You can measure 6 cups or eyeball that amount for the soup. Save the rest in the freezer for future soups or a nice treat on a cold winter day.
  3. Sautee onion, celery, and carrot in a large soup pot with slap of coconut oil until the onions are clear, then add in the mushrooms. Sautee for a few more minutes until everything looks delicious.
  4. Put the ½ cup of coconut oil in the pot and slowly add in the flour to the mix, stirring continuously. In this step we are making a roux. The flour is used to thicken the soup and the end result of this step should look like a gravy with veggies. If you don’t know how to make a roux, I would suggest quickly watching a tutorial online to get the idea. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eTf0n1HoC1w
  5. Slowly add in the bone broth, making sure the mixture stays even as you are adding the broth. Stir continuously.
  6. Cut up the chicken and throw it in the pot. Add the rice to masterpiece, set the heat to low and simmer. The recipe says 1-2 hours, but it may finish early. Just keep an eye on it and taste it periodically to see when it’s ready (and the rice is cooked).
  7. Add in spices to taste. It may be a good idea to add a smaller amount of spices when you first start simmering and then come back later to do a taste test and see how you want to blend the flavors. As the ingredients are simmering in the bone broth with each other, certain flavors will move to the front or the back of the soup. As they say in Thailand, season with emotion!

Sustainable Snail Mail

The postal service is amazing for all the wonderful things it brings us, but what happens to all that extra paper? In this challenge we will apply the Zero Waste Hierarchy Model from “Zero Waste Europe” to snail mail. We challenge you to follow these steps over the next month to achieve Sustainable Snail Mail.

REFUSE / RETHINK / REDESIGN

  • Move all of your bills to electronic statements with email notifications. 
  • Collect all of your junk mail for a month and then go through each individual piece of mail to figure out how to unsubscribe from snail mail. If you do this and find more information than what is offered below, please write what you discovered in the comments so we can all benefit!
  • Take the time to cancel any subscriptions that you’re no longer interested in, or opt for the digital version of the publication.
  • In your Amazon account you can opt for no plastic packaging for all future orders. To do this, log in to your account, go to help > contact us > more help/chat. It may take a few minutes to complete this process.
  • Opt out of Insurance and Credit Card Offers:  OptOutPreScreen.com (or call 888-567-8688). (You do not have to enter your ssn to complete this process).
  • Remove your address from Valpak https://www.valpak.com by clicking on “Address Removal” at the bottom of the page.
  • To unsubscribe from political mail, you will need to send in a note that politely says you no longer wish to receive their publications.
  • You may be able to use the app PaperKarma https://www.paperkarma.com to take pictures of junk mail and then they try to stop the junk mail for you.

REUSE

  • Save your snail mail paper in a bin for fire starter.
  • Make your own paper with your mail scraps. For instructions on how to make your own paper please check out my youtube videos on how to make a deckle: [ insert link ] and how to make your own paper: [ insert link]

RECYCLE / COMPOST

  • Recycle your paper by placing it in your recycle bin.
  • Compost your mail. Check out my video on composting to learn more about how to compost your paper at home.

References:

https://www.huffpost.com/entry/how-to-stop-junk-mail_n_5b27beb7e4b056b2263c5b54

https://itstillworks.com/13646353/how-to-stop-political-junk-mail

Composting

Click Here to Watch the Informational Video

What is Compost?

Compost happens naturally as organic matter decomposes. It is sometimes referred to as “black gold” because it contains many nutrients for plant growth. This dirt is great for gardens or for improving the soil structure.

Composting is the active intervention and expediting of this process. Composting is what happens when we intervene and monitor this process. By doing this we can ensure that we have a regular supply of this nutrient dense earth.

Why Compost? 

The primary reason is the environmental benefits. When you compost, less of your waste ends up in a landfill. Compost can suppress some soil-borne diseases. Increasing the population of microbes and cause them to out-compete pathogens. Compost is a great substitute for topsoil or fertilizer supplement when gardening. It can also be really fun and educational for the whole family.

It is cost effective and you’re more in control of knowing what exactly is going into your soil. Different plants require different nutrients and you can craft your compost ingredients accordingly.

There are a lot of different ways to Compost.

You can do hot or cold compost, add worms or let nature provide critters, in a bin, in the ground, above ground, in a wire cage, the options are endless. For more information on the types of bins you can use or design check out the references in the comments below.

For this video we are going to show three different types of cold compost. We have a large black rotating bin, a cat litter bin, and a boxed in area in the yard. The rotating bit and cat litter bin can be considered hot compost because the containers will keep the heat in. These will be ready in 3-6 months. The open box is considered cold compost and will be ready in 6-12 months.

The essential elements for creating good compost are:

Carbon, Nitrogen, Oxygen, and Water

No matter what your bin looks like, you want to make sure it is well ventilated. You can see with the boxed area it is exposed to the air, the black bin has holes along the side and near the cover. When using the cat litter bin for compost, what we want to do is drill some holes in one end of the bin.

You want to make sure your compost remains damp to the touch. You can achieve this easily by adding water to your bin. Be mindful not to overwater your compost. 

Now for the fun part, the carbon and nitrogen! Here are a couple different charts on the kinds of nitrogen and carbon sources you can use for your compost: 

It’s also helpful to know what kinds of things cannot be composted. As a general rule of thumb, you don’t want to compost cooked food or meat at home. These require a much higher temperature to process.

Things not to compost: Bones, Cheese, Cooking oil, Dairy Products, Lard, Mayonnaise, Meat products, Milk, Peanut butter, animal feces, plastic, petroleum, solvents, Salad dressing.

Knowing what to put in your compost is just one step in the process. It’s also important to pay attention to the nitrogen to carbon ratio. Good compost falls in the range of 25:1 – 40:1 with the ideal being 30:1.

Here’s a list of common compostable items and their ratios: 

Let’s use the calculator online to see how we can combine food scraps with newspaper and leaves to create the perfect mix of compost.

Composting Calculator

As you can see in the screen shot here, for every 1 part of food waste you would need 4 parts of newsprint and 4 parts of dry loose leaves to create a ration of 27:1. 

You can play around with the calculator online to see what different things you can add to get the perfect compost ratio. The important thing to remember is to include sources of nitrogen, carbon, oxygen, and water.

Another thing that is important in creating great compost is rotating your ingredients. The black bin is probably the easiest to rotate, you just give it a spin like on the price is right. With the cat litter bin, you can just flip it over, and in the boxed in set-up you will need to use a shovel to rotate the mixture. Compost should be rotated every 3 to 4 days or twice a week.

Now let’s talk about hot and cold composting. Cold compost is less labor intensive and the temperature will range from 40-110 degrees. Hot compost will range from 130-170. The boxed area is an example of cold compost. The black bin and kitty litter container can be considered hot compost. You can construct a hot compost pile outside by placing a tarp over the ingredients to trap the heat in. To keep the pile warm, before the temperature drops to 100 you want to turn the pile to aerate the soil. The heat comes from the bacteria and microbes working on breaking down the pile. By turning the pile, you give them some new material to snack on and keep the temperature high.

How do you know when your compost is finished? When the material is an even texture and has no strange odors and the pile is the same temperature as the air.

Do you have a composting story you’d like to share? Or have a burning question about composting? Write it in the comments below!!

References:

https://www.planetnatural.com/category/compost/?fbclid=IwAR2pTiZkRqy_kVUcOGpiofTQrwP5pswZEdsqFv7C9-DwtFIKLuE00S1XnJo

https://extension.umd.edu/hgic/topics/backyard-composting?fbclid=IwAR2AgdM4INe5qZjOWDsuPfR75HdDicEiySG7PxvHlBukPuUe2b0_G-yP1lM

Carbon: Nitrogen calculations videos

Compost Ratio Calculator

https://www.klickitatcounty.org/DocumentCenter/View/3523/Compost-Calculator

At Home Natural Healing for Non-Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease

Disclaimer: I am not a medical professional. The information below is based on research of the metaphysical, direct personal experience, and experience working with clients. It is always advised to see the opinion of a medical professional before engaging in any at home self-care activities.

Non-Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease

Happens when too much fat is stored in the liver. Can cause liver inflammation, and eventually cirrhosis.

Causes:

Could be due to excessive alcohol consumption.

Could be genetic.

Could be triggered by other diseases.

Symptoms:

Pain in the upper right abdomen

Fatigue

Mental Fog

Loss of Appetite

Unstable Blood Sugar Levels

Prevention:

As always with any kind of health issue, you want to start shifting your diet toward foods that are what they say they are. Fruit, Vegetables, Nuts, Grains, Meat (or no meat). Also be sure to drink enough water and take appropriate vitamins as directed by your health care provider.

Avoid things like: Diary, Caffeine, Alcohol, Sugar, and other addictive substances.

Be sure to have some kind of regular exercise routine. This will help to move toxins out of your system and help the liver to do its job.

Metaphysical Meanings:

Our Spiritual Nutrition: Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease – Easily offended and unable or unwilling to let go of the resulting anger that can easily turn into resentment and the desire for revenge

Could be an indication of some kind of conflict within the family. Or a conflict within the self regarding the family.

Could be caused by repressed anger or continually thinking “anger thoughts”. 

Also can be caused by a resistance to change.

Self Healing Methods:

Meditation:

Meditate to clear your mind first. When you mind is clear, focus your attention on your liver. You can put a hand over your liver to help focus your attention there. Wait and listen for any messages. You may experience different emotions, allow them to come up, feel them and ask them what they want to tell you.  Ask when this liver issue started and what was going on in life that triggered the beginning of the physical symptoms. This will help you to understand the root cause. Next, send loving kindness and compassion energy to that situation in the past. Send compassion to yourself in the present moment. Ask what lessons you may learn from the experience and imagine that you are integrating this lesson into every cell of your body. Now, forgive yourself for holding onto any anger. Do this by recognizing that the anger served you in some way in your life and now that you understand the lesson, you no longer need to hold onto the anger.

Affirmations:

I am at peaceful

I release all deep-rooted blame

I joyously release the past.

Every day my liver is healthier.

I have a healthy liver.

I let go of frustration effortlessly and easily.

I forgive myself.

I release all blaming attitudes.

Liver Cleanse:

Lemon

Raw Apple Juice

Cold Pressed Olive Oil

Diet Coke

Epsom Salt

Day 1

Stop taking all supplements because they are taxing to the liver. Eat a large breakfast and reduce your diet for the rest of the day to simple soup broth and protein shakes. Drink the apple juice all day long.  

6:00 pm  mix 1 Tbsp Epsom salt with water and drink. This will get the bowels moving and help to move everything through once you take the olive oil mixture. 

8:00 pm Have one more mixture of the Epsom Salt. 

10:00pm mix ½ cup cold pressed olive oil with ½ cup of diet coke (optional) and lemon juice. Drink this (try not to breath because it doesn’t taste good) then for 30 minutes lay on your right side. This will cause the oil to stay on the liver and cause the liver to throw off stones.

Go to bed as usual. Your liver will be working on processing the oil while you sleep.

Day 2

When you wake up, have another Epsom salt and water drink. Soon your body will start to clear out the liver stones. You may wish to stay close to the toilet today.

You will notice that there are different kinds of stones that are eliminated. There are gold, green, and black, with black being the oldest. These stones will be easily visible to the naked eye and you will see them floating in the toilet.

You can do this cleanse once every 2 to 3 weeks. The rest time in-between allows the liver to heal. This cleanse is best done in the Spring, Summer, and Fall. It’s not recommended in the winter because the body is already working hard in the cold weather.

You will probably notice an improvement in your overall mood immediately!

Of the times I’ve done this cleanse, I have noticed that I was really sluggish on day 2 and was running to the bathroom every 30 minutes. There was some discomfort and bloating all day. A couple of times after completing this cleanse I noticed that I had an experience of being a bit combative, but that went away in a day’s time. In general I experienced an immediate improvement in my mood.  

References: 

https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/nonalcoholic-fatty-liver-disease/symptoms-causes/syc-20354567

https://www.emotionsandbody.com/2017/10/liver-diseases-emotional-and.html

https://www.insightstate.com/health/liver-disease-spiritual-meaning-causes-healing/

https://www.acam.org/blogpost/1092863/216480/The-Amazing-Liver-Cleanse–a-Powerful-Tool-to-Improve-Your-Health–by-Andreas-Moritz

http://www.ourspiritualnutrition.com/is05.htm#Our_Spiritual_Nutrition

The 5 Stages of Happiness: A Guide to Being More Happy more Often

Just like the stages of grief, there are stages to happiness. The reason why I decided to write about this is because I notice so many people who really miss out of some of these stages. They do something special for someone in their life and it provides some momentary happiness or joy and then it fades into the background…and I can see there’s so much more enjoyment that can be squeezed out of those experiences. I think being happy is a choice akin to riding on a particular wavelength. You can choose happiness in this very moment!

Here’s some ways that you can jump on this wave:

1. Anticipation/Planning. You already start to feel happy knowing that you will have some kind of experience, event, gift, celebration, or something like that happening in the future. Planning out the details is another way to build the anticipation. If it’s traveling maybe the details are about where you’ll stay or what kinds of activities you’d be interested in doing. If it’s a gift you’re giving to someone maybe you’re planning the perfect presentation or a fun new way to decorate the gift.

2. The Experience/Thing itself. The moment the thing has arrived! You are now in the present moment experience of the thing that makes you happy! This could be one of the things mentioned above, or it could be something as simple as listening to your favorite band with headphones, cooking a meal, going for a walk, smelling the roses, or chilling with friends & pets.

3. Capturing the Moment. Taking photos or videos is a great way to capture the essence of the moment. You might also build or make something together with someone. Examples of things I’ve made with others that conjure fond memories are: paintings, a hydroponic system, dance choreography, picking items for interior design, and collage art. This allows you to look back on the experience and remember the feeling from that time. It also allows you to share your happiness with others.

4. Reviewing. Looking back on fond times either in your mind or by viewing the stuff you made when you were capturing the moment. One thing I like to do is make a new playlist for each season of a year. This way, whenever I listen back to that playlist, I’m able to remember all the feelings and experiences I had during that time.

5. Gratitude! You can do this step at any time for things past, present, or future. I personally like to write out my gratitude list every evening so I can go to sleep feeling blessed by the abundance in my life. I am grateful for you and the opportunity to share ways to get on the happiness vibe.

If you have additional tips or additional stages of happiness you want to share, write them in the comments below!

100 Paintings in 100 Days

To share the joy and peace of acrylic painting creation I am starting a 100 paintings in 100 days challenge starting January 1st, 2021.

To follow like and subscribe to my channel & turn on the notifications: www.youtube.com/anandawalker 

To monetarily support the challenge click here (you can also receive some of the paintings by supporting):

https://www.gofundme.com/f/100-paintings-in-100-days

The intention of this challenge is to spread the joy of watching creative works come to life and hopefully inspire you to take on a creative hobby. The world needs more art from people like you!

I encourage you to engage in a creative challenge this year. Comment below what you will challenge yourself to create! Be sure to include a link to your work so we can follow along.

2021 Animal Spirit Tarot Predictions

2020 was a year for the books. The collective is ready to take a breath and celebrate the completion of a difficult chapter. Let’s have a look into what to expect for 2021.

This Tarot Reading is brought to us by Kim Krans the author of the Animal Spirit deck. What we are going to do is pull one card for each month. We will have a look at what the book says and then add a few words from tapping into the guidance from light beings about the nature of the collective conscious. The goal of this reading is to give a guide for what the collective conscious will be experiencing throughout the year. This is more directly related to the inner experience of all humans, but aspects will be reflected in the outer world. Remember that your personal experience of the collective will be filtered through your personal programming so the different energies that come up this year may affect you differently.

Why do a reading like this? Tapping into the movement of the collective conscious energies can help you to align your energy to the flow of what is happening in the world. This is akin to knowing how to utilize the energy of the different seasons. In winter we hibernate, rest, reflect. In spring we come to life, birth projects, sew seeds. In the summer we enjoy, move daily, allow things to grow. In the fall we harvest, tell stories, and celebrate.

Please leave your insights & questions in the comments below!

If you are interested in doing a past/present/future Animal Spirit Reading with Ananda please submit your $50 payment below and you’ll be contacted to set up a time for either a phone or zoom call.

January

Element: Fire

Animal: Elephant

Balanced: One-pointed focus, generous, loving

Unbalanced: misunderstands fate

Bring to balance: Trust

Message from the Light Beings: January is all about tapping into your inner wisdom. We are in the middle of winter right now and this is a great time to take a moment to reflect on what we learned in the last year. Sometimes we think we know what’s going on and what our higher purpose is here in this life. To give an example: a lot happened in the last year that stirred a lot of passion and action and those things may have seemed like a purpose in the moment. The energy of those moments is now shifted and we are being asked to look deeper within ourselves for the underlying reasons we were engaged in those activities or felt those feelings. One of the goals of the current ascension process right now is to bring about Unity consciousness. Take some time to ask yourself these questions: What was my motivation for my actions last year? What did my feelings tell me about myself? What is my part in the greater whole? We are coming into alignment with our purpose and soon we will be asked to very strongly create the heaven on earth we seek. What part of this beautiful tapestry will you be working to make real? There is more work to do in breaking down old systems and thought patterns and the elephant energy of making a clear path by standing solidly in its own single-pointed focus and moving forward. This month calls you to really look inward and find what your calling and purpose are.

February

Element: Water

Animal: Swan

Balanced: Infinite Creative Power

Unbalanced: Agitated, Snippy, Lacking Vision

Bring Back to Balance: Solo Time, Writing

Message from Light Beings: Now that you have worked out your purpose, the creative forces will come through you and be available for you to explore and start to paint a more detailed picture of what that will look like. Ideas and creative energy will free flow. We are still in winter at this time so this card still calls us to work with ourselves in bringing our ideas and vision to life. This month the energies will feel very light and infinitely abundant. During this time you may find yourself having great revelations and insights into your own journey that will add to the positive forward momentum. Things from the past that may not have made sense or stuck energy that wasn’t processed all the way may suddenly be transformed into some creative insight. The vision here is of the beautiful swan on the water, ruffling its feathers majestically, recognizing it’s ability to fly but gliding gracefully on the water’s surface, reflecting on life with new eyes.

March

Element: Air

Animal: Owl

Balanced: Generous, Trusting, Secure

Unbalanced: Money quarrels, scarcity

Bring to Balance: An Offering

Message from Light Beings: This is showing up one year after the initial lock down. We have been in a time of scarcity in one form or another for one year now. This card points to abundance and wealth. This may mean a windfall, a change in job, a new opportunity, expanded social circumstances, travel, or anything that really adds value to your life. Given that we have been in a time period of lack it is important that we move beyond this mentality as a collective and trust that this is a new beginning and by sharing this new wealth and abundance with others we will spark the beginning of a wellspring of treasures. This will be an important month to remember to write out your gratitude list and remember that love and abundance flow when they are given freely.

April

Element: Air

Animal: Hummingbird

Balanced: Smart, Curious, Loves to Learn

Unbalanced: Pushy, Insistent, Sharp

Bring to Balance: Take A Class

Message from the Light Beings: If we have all followed the energy of the previous months this year, we will all have something to share and this is the time to get out there and get curious about what everyone else has been up to. Take their classes, be open-minded, make connections, and be a sponge. Approach other’s work as you would want your own to be received, with fully open, curious, and loving arms. This month is about sweet exchanges, connecting with others and their ideas, and planting seeds.

May

Element: Water

Animal: Octopus

Balanced: Interested, Engaged, Intelligent

Unbalanced: Needy, Clingy, Lacks Courage

Bring to Balance: Space to Oneself, Talk Therapy

Bring to Balance: Space to Oneself, Talk Therapy

Message from Light Beings: So far this year we have had a lot of information come through for ourselves and from others. Now is another moment to take some time to integrate all of the information that has come through and carefully consider decisions about where you are spending your energy. Remember that though everyone has a wellspring of life and everything looks so amazing outside of you that you also have a wellspring within that you can rely on. Stay tapped in to your inner knowing. This would be a good month to proceed slowly, journal, talk with your close friends or “angelinos”. Don’t allow yourself to get caught up in other people’s personal business and be careful who you share your own troubles with. Recognize where relationships may be draining or not beneficial and make appropriate boundary adjustments. The vision is that we are really wanting to reconnect and spring into action, the caution here is to keep your eyes on the forward movement and not the sticky stuff from the past. There may have been a tendency to overshare or become overly involved in other people’s business in the past, but this new time is calling for intentional connections that are positive for all parties involved.

June

Element: Spirit

Animal: Sea Serpent

Message from Light Beings: It’s summer time! It is time to let go of all that is holding you back, enjoy the sun, be creative, express your true desires, allow what you desire to come into your world. You are safe and held by the mother energy of the earth. Let yourself be carried by your creativity.

July: Card 1

Element: Water

Animal: Shark

Balanced: Intriguing, Captivating, Mysterious

Unbalanced: Sneaky, Destructive

Bring to Balance: Honesty

Message from Light Beings: Something deep will be triggered within you, maybe a memory, maybe a deeper desire, whatever it is, it’s something you don’t really want to acknowledge or haven’t wanted to look at. What’s important this month is to really take the time to be honest firstly with yourself. Recognize that you are uncovering something within yourself that may be big and helpful for others. Whenever we are clearing dense consciousnesses it doesn’t feel good. The energy can feel like molasses working its way through our body. Acknowledge the energy, emotions, feelings, etc. without making them “wrong”. Everything here is as it should be. Give this some space and be really honest with yourself about what is coming up and what it means to you. The shark cannot swim backward so, don’t look back.

July: Card 2

Element: Earth

Animal: Wolf

Balanced: Reliable, Democratic, Fearless

Unbalanced: Judgmental, Dominating

Bring To Balance: Practice Letting Go

Message from Light Beings: The movement of energy now is about forming communities and taking care of those in your circle. Think of this in terms of honoring everyone’s autonomy in the process. People are still moving in and out and finding their way through this new time and experience. There will be some shuffling around. This is an ongoing process in life, but our attention is being called to this energy right now to digest and understand how this works in a new way. You could think of it like star clusters or even when you’re eating cereal and one bit floats from one group to another. It just flows effortlessly. Things come into existence and dissolve. Groups form, create, move, dissolve, or fractal into other groups. Let things happen and flow. Just keep your purpose and vibration in alignment and allow yourself and others to move freely around while at the same time taking special care of those who are with you in every now moment. Dedication with non-attachment is the theme. Trust in the larger picture.

August

Element: Spirit

Animal: Unicorn

Message from Light Beings: This month is about spirituality, awakening, and reflection. The vision is that this energy will be experienced by everyone a little bit differently depending on their level of spiritual awakening. Regardless of if you are starting your journey or have been in a state of understanding for a while, these energies have the potential to increase your consciousness of spirituality. You may find yourself seeking more information about spirituality, or having spontaneous revelations. You may also experience very strange coincidences in your life of things “magically” aligning. This would be a fun month to ask your guides for “signs” or “deeper understanding”.

September

Element: Fire

Animal: Zebra

Balanced: World, Enthusiastic, Fashion-Forward

Unbalanced: Jaded, Pouty, Vain

Bring to Balance: An Epic Adventure, Art

Message from Light Beings: Finally! If you haven’t gotten away from home yet, this is the time. Get ready for an adventure. Maybe it’s international travel, a road trip, going somewhere new within your country, or something else! This is the time to get out there and have an enthusiastic adventure. This energy calls us back to the vibe of the beginner’s mind. Seeing things as if we are seeing them for the first time and being completely delighted. Allow yourself to enter into this child-like wonderment and see the world from a new perspective.

October

Element: Fire

Animal: Scorpion

Balanced: Wild and Free, Fierce

Unbalanced: Jealous, Resentful, Unresolved

Bring to Balance: Honesty, Forgiveness

Message from Light Beings: Entering into scorpio on the 22nd, we welcome the scorpion energy! Fall is in coming in and we are in the time of the harvest. We begin to take a look at how our manifestations for the year have played out in our lives and the fruit from our endeavors. Instead of ignoring the things that didn’t go well, look them in the eye and discuss these situations with parties involved to resolve any underlying tensions. A way to open the conversation could look like “I noticed this pattern played out, what are your thoughts on this?” and ask open-ended questions to dissipate tensions. Once you’ve done the hard work, enjoy returning to your passion with resolve and determination.

November

Element: Spirit

Animal: Cosmic Egg

Message from Light Beings: This message is about completion. This month you may feel a sense of contentment rising up from within you as you reflect on the year prior. You did it! It’s been a cool ride and from the egg we came and to the egg we return. It’s about completing a cycle and also beginning of a gestation period. This is perfect for the coming of winter. This month should be spend just relaxing and recognizing your part in the beautiful tapestry of life. This part of the journey is complete, while another leg shall begin soon!

December:

Element: Spirit

Animal: Black Egg

Message from Light Beings: The energy this month is about connecting with truth, your truth, universal truth, the truth of others. This black egg is a sounding board that when we listen closely we can hear our own truths resonate back. This is about talking slowly and deliberately. You may feel called to speak your truth, write, teach or sing. Remember with the ascension process we are aiming for unity so we are also being asked to balance the multiple “truths” of those around us and ourselves as part of a greater whole where all the pieces fit beautifully together.

Health & Fitness: A Minimalist’s Approach in 6 steps.

2020 was a year to stay at home and work on yourself. I decided to spend a portion of my time trying different diets and home routines to find one that suits me. I’ve tried different things with varying results because of A. a lack of knowledge and B. only partial commitment.

Disclaimer: I am not a fitness guru of any kind. In terms of health and fitness, I’m just an average person who has done some research and self-experimentation. You should always check with your doctor first regarding your health and fitness levels and what is safe for you!

There are a million different programs out there that will tell you to eat this, don’t eat this, do this exercise, don’t do this exercise, hormones come into play, you should count your macros, sleep enough….and the list goes on. It’s really easy to get caught up in the whirlwind of information and feel a bit lost. As a minimalist, I prefer to have things simply laid out for me so I can just check the boxes and move on with my day. So I’ve created a very simplified guideline that you can overcomplicate later:

  1. To lose weight, implement a calorie deficit. I just love James Smith’s multitude of videos that simply state “To lose fat, you must have a calorie deficit.”
  2. Pay attention to the quality of your calories. As a very basic rule of thumb I only eat things that are what they say they are. This would include things like fruit, vegetables, meat, beans, nuts, etc.
  3. Intermittent Fasting/Eating Window. You can try different things to find one that works for you, a general rule of thumb is fast 18 hours and eat in a window of 8 hours.
  4. Vary your fitness routine. Variety keeps the muscles guessing, breaking down and rebuilding.
  5. Stay Hydrated! Drink enough water. If you’re drinking coffee or alcohol, drink more water to offset this or minimize the coffee/alcohol intake.
  6. Get Enough GOOD RESTFUL sleep.

My year on Sleep: 2020 was a great year for some of us to catch up on sleep. Who wants to keep up with all the murder hornets, politics, losing your job, eating your feelings stuff anyway? Better to just sleep through this year and hope for a better 2021. ;-). Honestly though, this year I got a Fitbit and started tracking my sleep, only to find that it’s terrible. Making sure you have a set bed time, a dark room to sleep in, and that you won’t be disturbed while you get your beauty rest are all super important for getting good sleep. For me this meant getting black-out curtains, shutting my cats out of my sleeping room, getting a weighted blanket and sleeping with ear plugs.

My year on hydration: I did not do well on staying hydrated. I’m chronically addicted to coffee. Though I managed to quit drinking alcohol and I minimized my coffee intake to one cup a day in the morning, I still feel like I don’t drink enough water throughout the day. I will continue to work on this point.

My year on varying the workout routine: I started the year training for a Marathon. This worked out pretty well. I was able to stick to my workout schedule and actually ran the race solo in March with a finishing time of something like 7 hours. After that I decided that I didn’t like running as much as I thought.

I moved on to the p90x and did that for about 60 days. It was so damn hard. The one I did was the old school p90x where each workout is about 60 minutes long. Mostly I just felt tired while doing this and eventually gave up.

Next I switched to 4 hours of soccer a week and commuting 90 minutes on my bike 4 times a week. That was pretty awesome and for me felt the best out of all the work out routines. I think I liked this one the most because all the activities were functional. I didn’t feel like I had to carve time out of my day to do the workouts. Inevitably winter showed up so I had to switch again.

Next I tried the Jillian Michael’s app and I think it’s pretty awesome. Her workouts are designed specifically for your level and needs. I also liked that her workouts were between 7-30 minutes long (a lot less time than the p90x). She also packs in a lot of variety. I would have stuck with this app only, but with the pandemic I needed to get out of the house and I also enjoy the hydro massage at the gym.

Now I’m working out at a gym 5 days a week. At the suggestion of James Smith, I am lifting weights before cardio. I switch up what I do for weights and cardio every time to keep the variety in my routines. Soon I will start training for mountain climbing so I can tackle Mt. Shasta and Mt. Rainier in the springtime of 2021.

My year on diet: Okay, this was the hardest category to get pinned down. Because I had the time this year, I had multiple full panel blood tests done and spoke with my doctor on a regular basis to find a balanced diet and vitamin situation that would work for me. I tried so hard to be vegan and vegetarian, but I just ended up becoming anemic and tired. Maybe I wasn’t doing it right and just need to work on finding higher protein foods, maybe it’s partly genetic, maybe I can find a bunch of other reasons why it didn’t work out……long story longer, I switched back to primarily Paleo. I am gluten free even on my indulgent diet days. I’m mostly dairy free (except for yogurt & cheese on occasion). The rest of the time I’m Paleo. This works for me. I encourage you to find a diet regimen that works for you. What I mean by it works is A. I get all the nutrients that my body needs to do what it needs to do B. It’s easy for me to stick to…. meaning I enjoy the food I eat. You may be a vegan Masterchef or Pescatarian, whatever works for you do that!

To lose weight, implement a calorie deficit. Okay, so the reason I like this instead of counting Macros is because it’s simple. It’s easy to do. I don’t have to think that much. If you’re at the point where counting Macros is not too much thinking, by all means do that.

Side Note – I tried the whole “Cabbage Soup Weight-loss Diet” and I think it’s complete garbage. It’s way too hard and you end up gaining most of the weight back. It wasn’t worth the trouble and you should only try this if you enjoy torturing yourself. This is one of those things I think would be good to put into the 1984 history incinerators. It’s a good reminder to not believe everything you read on the internet.

In addition to a good diet, I think it’s important to have a vitamin regimen to supplement what you may not be getting from your food. So for me, I have a bunch of vitamins that I take in the morning: Multivitamin, B12, Vitamin D & Iron. In the evening I take Magnesium to help my muscles relax and to fall asleep.

I have a cup of coffee in the morning…..but dammit, I am not perfect. Sometimes I have a coffee at 7pm and I’m up all night, then I order gluten free pizza and eat candy. I enjoy myself. Then the next day, I’m back at the gym and back to my routine and HAPPY! I think that’s the most important thing about diet and fitness…. maintaining a sense of HAPPINESS about who you are and the choices that you’re making. You are making steps to improve your health and wellbeing. You should be happy about that. You may not see changes over night…. being healthy is a LIFESTYLE not an end game. You don’t get to a healthy spot and then go “Oh I made it, now back to the take out and sitting around all day.” No, you are actually changing your LIFESTYLE by getting active and giving a damn about what you put in your face. It’s something you continually work at.

I hope you have enjoyed the post and my semi-minimalistic approach to health and fitness. If you have other ideas, things you’ve tried, your review on certain fitness programs, diets, whatever you like–please comment below! I can’t wait to hear about your health and fitness journey in 2020.

The Life Cycle of A Butterfly

Can you imagine what it must be like to go through a transformation where everything about who you are changes, except for your nervous system? That’s what happens in the life cycle of every butterfly.

Stage 1. Egg

Not much happening in this phase of life. It is interesting to not that female butterflies will lay anywhere between 40 and 500 eggs in their lifetime. They also lay eggs on specific plants. They smell the pheromones of the plant with their antenna from a distance and when they land on the plant, they verify it’s the correct one by tasting it with their feet. This plant is specifically the best plant for their offspring when they become a caterpillar.

Stage 2. Caterpillar

Caterpillar. The sole purpose of the caterpillar is to eat, excrete, and grow. It takes in everything from the plant it was hatched on and gathers this nutrients to prepare for the next stage of life.

Stage 3. Chrysalis

During this phase, an outer “shell” is created to protect the insect while it transforms. Everything about the physicality of the caterpillar will dissolve into a DNA “goo” leaving only the nervous system in tact. This “goo” contains the information to create discs. These discs form the various parts of the Butterfly. When the transformation is complete, the Chrysalis will shed and the butterfly will be “born”.

In a recent visit to Aruba, I was able to experience a Butterfly Farm. The tour was really interesting and went into the finer details of how much butterflies like to drink (fermented fruit). Some of them cannot hold their liquor apparently. Okay, that was really funny to learn about, but the life cycle of the butterfly got me thinking about how that can be applied to humans. Have you ever had an experience where it feels like your entire identity seems to be literally falling apart? Your nerves are bare to the outside elements and you just want to lay around in a puddle of goo?

I thought so….I have certainly felt this way before in life. Maybe there’s something to be learned from observing the transformation of the butterfly. Before becoming a butterfly, the caterpillar takes in a lot of information and gets pretty “full” or “grown”. Then it goes and hides away from the world, later emerging as this fully formed being of beauty.

There’s a purpose to every stage of the Butterfly’s life and if you’re in the goo stage, stay the course, brighter times are ahead! Maybe you’re in the process of recreating yourself and you’ll emerge with a new life path and a new zest for existence. The old you may be completely gone, never to return…. what a relief!

Maybe there are people around you who are in the goo phase and they just need some time to re-organize themselves. I encourage you to take a moment and reflect on what phase of a butterfly’s life you are in and write your thoughts in the comment below. Do you have any words of wisdom for others in the goo phase?