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my name is monica but now i'm better known as nana. i have recurring dreams about faraway places and wild animals running free. i love to create with paper, food and yarn and i love to share snippets of my life.

Saturday, April 30, 2011

Royal Wedding Virtual Crop at YPP!


Plan on spending the entire day, Saturday April 30th, with all your friends on YPP as we crop and make gorgeous projects for upcoming weddings, showers, or parties. You'll be a Queen or King for the day while attending the crop wearing your wedding finest, sipping punch, and nibbling on tea sandwiches and petit fours. Find the recipes in The Royal Wedding group, along with class supply lists... no need to bring a gift, I'll be sending out hourly prizes all day. Times are CST!!
Head over to YPP and join in the fun. You must sign up as a member to be eligible for prizes!!

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

I **heart** my Joe!


I got such a sweet surprise from my daughter today. First she gave me four of the cutest spring bowls and then she gave me some new Joe nail polish (Persian Blue!) The other colors shown here are Pineapple(yellow) and Bloom(pink!)
I just love how the Joe color palette changes every season and even though one would think that the colors are too young and funky for someone my age, I think the shades they choose are always so tasteful and classic. Yep, nothing like a cuppa Joe with some Joe and your favorite daughter! Life is good!

The Benefits of Lemon Water


In my quest for a healthier diet and ridding myself of toxins I've been doing some research on raw foods. I came across this article so I think I'm going to start this healthy practice right away!

The Power of Lemon Water


Lemon water helps clean the toxins out of your body. Your skin can't look healthy if your body is holding onto toxins! When you get rid of toxic waste in your system, your skin will show it first! Your skin will be the first thing you notice cause it looks rejuvenated and not sallow or full of acne. However, that's not all the benefits that lemons provide for us! (Another healthy way to get rid of toxins that hold onto your fat and cause visceral fat, is to do a health cleanse!)

Lemon can help relieve many digestion problems when mixed with hot water. These include nausea, heartburn, constipation and parasites. It is even known to help relieve hiccups when consumed as a juice. Lemon juice acts as a liver tonic and helps you digest your food by helping your liver produce more bile. It decreases the amount of phlegm produced by your body. It is also thought to help dissolve gallstones.

Because of its high Vitamin C content, it is used to prevent and treat many infections, hasten wound healing, and diminish allergies. Lemon juice also relieves symptoms of asthma, tonsillitis, and sore throats.


Lemon is a diuretic. This means that lemon water is especially good for people with urinary tract infections. People with arthritis or rheumatism can benefit from consuming lemons because it helps flush out toxins and bacteria. When lemon is mixed with coffee, it also helps eliminate headaches. It is possible that lemon juice cancels out the side effects of the caffeine found in coffee. (Interestingly, caffeine can sometimes be a precursor to headaches but many times, OTC headache medications include caffeine.)

When externally applied, lemon juice poured on a cotton ball and gently applied to the nostrils can stop nose bleeds although this may sting a little. When massaged gently into gums, lemon juice can effectively stop bleeding gums. Lemon juice with glycerin is effective when used on the lips to treat chapped lips. (Don't apply lemon juice however, if the skin on your lips is cracked. Ouch!) Applied on your skin, lemon juice can also help prevent sunburn. Lemons are a key ingredient in effective liver cleanses.

Nutritionally, lemon's potassium content nourishes the brain and nerve cells. Its calcium content builds healthy bones and healthy teeth. Its magnesium, in conjunction with calcium, plays an important part in the formation of blood albumen. Lemon's contain 48.3% potassium, 29.9% calcium, 11.1% phosphorus, and 4.4% magnesium. Lemons have also been used to treat liver disorders, colds, coughs, influenza, diphtheria, fevers and rheumatism.

Water cleanses and purifies your body and also has an alkalizing effect. It is essential to every bodily function at a cellular level. Bottled water has become a staple product of our society, although its not your best choice for water consumption. The water you drink is essential to your existence but we forget how much we rely on it until we don't have it. Then we really miss and crave it. (Think about Hurricane Katrina or the reality show Survivor!)

Lemon is also very good at clarifying your hair to remove hair product build up. For those with dark hair, use lemon juice to add golden and red highlights to your hair. For those with blonde hair, use lemon to lighten your blonde color. To do this, simply squeeze the juice from 1/2 lemon (or more) into your hair and sit out in the sun for an hour. Shampoo and condition afterward for hair that looks shinier, reflects more highlights, and feels fresh and clean!

It is imperative that you get both water and lemon in your diet, if you want to stay healthy and preserve your beauty. When you mix them together to make lemon water, you get a healthy way to replenish and rejuvenate your body.

Start your engine everyday by drinking a glass of room temperature, lukewarm to warm, lemon water first thing every morning! This is a tip from Traditional Chinese Medicine. It's important to start your day with water everyday because of the time lapse between going to bed and getting up. Water hydrates your body naturally. Caffeine found in coffee, dehydrates your body.

If you don’t like lemons, use limes or just drink plenty of fresh water. More than 8 glasses a day is what works well for many people. You just can't get enough of it! My skin looks great (for my age) and I attribute it to the fact that I’ve always consumed lots of water and lemon!

Tips for Choosing and Using Lemons

Lemons should always be room temperature. To extract the most juice and pulp from the lemon, roll the lemon around on a table or the counter a few times.

Don't microwave fresh lemons to get more juice! Why? Microwaves change the polarity of the 'molecular structure on a cellular level' of whatever you're 'nuking'. In other words, it changes the actual structure of whatever you're cooking or heating up. It also destroys a lot of the nutrients in the process. Read more about the harmful effects of microwaves.

Always look for lemons that are bright yellow in color and look fresh. Lemons with a thicker peel, have less pulp and juice. Lemons with thinner skin, have more pulp and more juice. If none of the lemons at your store look fresh, just buy the cutesy little plastic lemons that contain lemon juice. They'll work fine until you can get the 'real thing'!

*Interesting note - If you are considering using RealLemon lemon juice, you should be aware that it contains sulfites. One of my readers wrote in about her bad experience with it. Who knew? I've used this product in the past and never had a bad reaction from it, but if you are allergic to sulfites, this is good information to know. A good substitute would be to use organic lemon juice instead.

Lemon water is easy to fix. Mix the pulp and juice from 1/2 lemon in tepid water and drink!

Remember that lemons and water are still very cheap, compared to other products! Mix up some fresh lemon water today!

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Day 7 - 30 Day Shred- Remember the Dryl!


Today I've been in recovery mode from my trip to the emergency. My neck swelling has reduced and it appears to have taken home in my left eye. I am one itchy, frustrated mess and I just want carry on with my exercise plan and the only drill I want to be paying attention to is Jillian Michaels...not Bena-dryl!!!
I have not given up just yet!!!

Monday, April 18, 2011

Day 6 - 30 Day Shred - My sabbath


A very wise teacher once said to me "if you don't take a day of rest, the Lord will surely give you one!" Well I got mine today. I had an overnight stay at the hospital with a very swollen neck. My neck was so full of fluid that the skin broke down and turned burgundy' They gave me an epi pen and an IV of prednisone, Pepcid and Benadryl!i have Lupus but uts never reared its ugly face quite like this before! I am so tired today so I guess I'll take my sabbath!
I'm blogging this from my bed!

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Day 5 - 30 Day Shred - Stress!


I woke up in the middle of the night with familiar neck pain so Richard went and got my ice collar and I thought....oh dear you've over done it...(good excuse not to workout right???) but then the voices of Jesse and Lee from PHAT Inc. were in my head....you can work through the pain...(of course I told them to shut up!). By the time I got up I immediately got ready for my workout and let my body tell me when to stop...and it didn't. Every day I hear Jillian Michaels speak to me saying something I need to hear on that day. She shouted, "You want to see change?! Well you need to put stress on the body." Did that Jillian...thanks:) From what I've been reading online some people have started to see changes on Day 5. I haven't seen any remarkable physical changes, but my mental approach to working out is going through a metamorphosis and that's a good thing. I took a Day 5 picture and I will compare it to Day 10 and maybe post them if I'm brave enough! So visualize me singing the lyrics to Barry Manilow's song I Made it Through as I go about my day!
"Just aim beyond the clouds
And rise above the crowds
And start your own parade
'Cause when I chased my fears away
That's when I knew that I could finally say
I made it through.....!"

Video from Tim Coffey!-Contribution to bcdoula

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Day 4 - 40 Day Shred - Can't Phone it in!


I woke up and my day had already taken a complete 180 to what I had planned....that's perfectly OK as I am very flexible and it was no big deal but it served as a possible GOOD excuse not to do my workout. That was quickly followed by a phone call where although well intentioned, the caller made a comment that I chose to take in a negative way....excuse #2 why I don't want to do my workout....my feelings are a little hurt. Then I started thinking about something I remembered from the Pain Clinic where they talked about turning negative thoughts into positive ones so I thought, get those shoes on your feet and move your butt.I jumped and punched the negativity right out of my mind. To my surprise. not only was the the workout over quickly, it was awesome and getting easier every day. Jillian Michaels says, "You can't phone it in. You HAVE to do the work."...and she is right. I took my Big Emotions drops from my homeopath and dug my heels in and I'm so glad I did! Woohoo for me!

Friday, April 15, 2011

Day 3 - 30 Day Shred! -Feel That?!


This morning I DID NOT WANT to do this workout at all. It's not that I was hurting or aching, I just didn't want to play, but once I started working out it was much easier and quicker that I thought. I've noticed that my abs are a little sore but it's a good kind of pain! During the workout Jillian Michaels shouts" Do you feel that pit in your abs? Well that's the fear leaving your body!" Awesomeness! My goal is too fit comfortably into these straight legged, non stretchy, Calvin Klein jeans...(key word, comfortably!)I really can't believe that me, Miss Chronic Pain, can do this workout. If I can do it then so can YOU!!!

Exciting update on my giveaway and Tim Coffey giveaway news!!!

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Make a flower ring using a scalloped circle punch!

Day 2 - 30 Day Shred! -Togetherness!


So I was a little sore when I woke up but nothing like I expected to be! I slept really well and felt pretty good and I seem a bit more able to move around but I'm still in the honeymoon period!
During the workout right when I was ready to quit Jillian says"Hang in there! We're all in this together!' and it really encouraged me to go on!
I really have to say that wearing really good workout shoes is imperative!!

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

30 Day Shred! - The Beginning.......


I have been putting starting this off for awhile now but I decided why wait. Stop complaining about losing the last 20 pounds and time to get it done. I started the Jillian Michaels 30 Day Shred where she says you can lose 20 pounds in 30 days, so I am here to document my journey. I first want to say that I didn't just go from chronic severe pain to the 30 Day Shred all by myself! I had the amazing support of my husband,my family, friends, the Low G.I. food plan and most especially my former trainer , Lee Hodgins, from PHAT Training INC Without his support and words of wisdom there is NO way I would be where I'm at today!
Lee said to me once no matter who you are or where you are we are all starting each day at the beginning so here is my beginning ...again!
I started Day One today and although it was difficult, I got through it and I feel really great about that. Time will tell how I feel about this tomorrow! Stay tuned!!!

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Weary...

I'm not sure what is up with me lately but I really feel like I'm at a crossroads as far as what direction I want to go with my creativiy. I want to.do so many things but I seem to have lost my mojo! I know that this will pass as it always does but in the meantime if you have any tips to help re fire my mojo, please share!!!

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