30 Days of Advocacy - Against Witch-Hunts


I've recently learned of the witch hunts occuring in South Africa and felt that I would like to share this information with my followers. Many may already know about this, but here's your chance to do something about it.

The Pagan Rights Alliance offers the following suggestions on what you can do !

∙ Download this International Letter of Protest Download in .pdf / Download in .docx sign your name to the bottom of it, and e-mail it to the South African Human Rights Commission (SAHRC) between March 29 and April 27.

∙ If you use Twitter, please link to http://twitter.com/TouchstoneAdvoc - Touchstone Advocacy will be running a daily campaign around the names of those murdered in South Africa during 2010 (see below) as a result of being accused of witchcraft. Please re-tweet in solidarity and remembrance.

∙ During the campaign, please post your daily campaign activities to Touchstone's campaign wall ... and tell everyone what you're doing. Your inspired actions may inspire others.

∙ Tell people you know about ongoing witch-hunts in Africa and elsewhere - inform them about ongoing human rights abuses they may not have been aware of.

∙ Gather people you know together during this campaign - hold wakes of remembrance - wear black armbands in memory of those who have been murdered because someone accused them of being a Witch.

∙ Light a candle every day during the campaign in memory of the victims past and present, and in solidarity with this campaign.

Thank you for supporting this campaign...

For more information on ongoing and current human rights abuses committed as a result of witchcraft accusations, please visit Touchstone Advocacy.

A friend of mine has started up a fund to to help the children of Africa during the 30 day event. If you can take a moment to donate to Mrs B's Help the Children of Africa Fund.


Lighting my candle now.

Blessed Be
)O(

March is Colo-rectal Cancer Awareness Month

March is Colo-rectal Cancer Awareness Month. Over the last three weeks I have seen several status message requests on Facebook saying put this message in your status if you know someone with Cancer, or if you have cancer... and I see the little fruit messages related to the bra color status messages for breast cancer awareness.

I sit back and wonder how many of these messages will be read by someone who has cancer and doesn't even know it. It's amazing how we can purchase our pink ribbon water bottles or put a bumper sticker on our cars which that does absolutely nothing to help cure or prevent cancer.

There is something that you can do to help lower your risks of cancer. There is something you can do to help ensure your family has the best chances to avoid this horrible diagnosis.

The first thing you can do is to stop eating poison. Stop adding GMOs, Preservatives and Artificial flavors/sweeteners to your diet. If it comes in a cellophane wrapper, pretty good chances are it's not that good for you. Increase your fresh fruit and vegetable intake. Adding more leafy green veggies and fresh, local, in season fruit to your diet will not only add much needed nutrients to your body, but will also take the place of the bad foods that make you feel and LOOK bad. Adding some exercise to your day will help as well. Exercise will help you sleep better at night and burn calories which will result in shrinking that space around your waist. The size of your waist is directly related to life expectancy.

Currently the only recognized treatment for cancer in the US is Chemotherapy. Pretty much poisoning your body. Your best chances to beat cancer is to never get it to start with. I have found much interesting information from the Gerson Institute as it related to using natural ways to beat cancer.

Whatever you do, try to do a little more than changing your status message. Take some physical steps to save yourself and your family from this type of battle.


Blessed Be
)O(

The Sanctity of Marriage

For the last nine years I've been closely watching the arguments for and against marriage equality. I've been deeply effected by the out come of many legislative and judicial actions related to marriage. I've actually had to marry the same person four times now, so to say that I understand the sanctity of marriage would be an understatement.

Recently I've come to realize that to some, marriage is only a word or only a piece of paper. To me, marriage is a commitment between consenting adults to join their lives together and share the ups and downs together as a unit. That unit is recognized by the state and federal government granting rights and special incentives to the unit which cannot be obtained through any other process.


That being said, my first and most cherished marriage is my hand-fasting ceremony with my hubby. We stood by the full moon on Samhain and bound ourselves one to the other in promise that supersedes all other documents, regulations or laws that are passed. Still, we sought out marriage many more times after only to be turned down.

I venture out into the world wide web and find folks like Fred Phelps' group Westboro Baptist Church (forgive me for not providing a link, Anonymous took care of that), Mrs Betty Bowers website, which was just brought to my attention that it's a spoof site. Well thank goodness for that. Let's go on with the other's (Evangelical Presbyterian Church or CBN) that sit around preaching that the LGBTQ Community is destroying the "Sanctity of Marriage".

Really?


Survey Says!

50% of all marriages end in divorce
40% of those are second marriages for one or both of the parties in the marriage

100% of those are marriages between opposite sex people

Sources:
Wikipedia
Divorcerate.org
ReligiousTolerance.org
Centers for Disease Control

Now, let's think about the marriages that we see, be it in Hollywood or in your own town. How many people are cheating? How many people are calling names and hurting their partner? How many are just unhappy?

What does this do to the sanctity of marriage?



Let me tell you, speaking as a person who's stood in line waiting for a marriage license and been told NO, you can't get one here. I can tell you, when I see the marriages out there today that are loveless marriages. Marriages of convenience or marriages just because you're too lazy to get off your ass and get a divorce and instead you bar hop and jump from one bed to another with no regard for your partners feelings,


THAT my friends is destroying the sanctity of marriage. It's not people who love and care for each other and just want the same protections that any person has. And the one statistic that blows me away, is that the divorce rate is higher for Christians than any other religious group. The one group, walking around spouting about how Gay people are destroying marriage should stop and have a look at their own back yard before going out and trying to tell me about my yard! (Isn't there a bible story about that?)

I hope that one day, people stop being so hateful and bigoted that in order to feel better about themselves they have to destroy the lives of others around them. Today, the fight goes on. Recently the US signed a UN resolution along with 85 other countries to stop the violence and sanctions against LGBT people.

What we send out, returns to us, times three.


Blessed Be

The Best Medicine

Recently I read an article related to medicine. It states that modern America is chronically over medicated. (Source) And that the use of Chinese herbs are a better way to treat medical conditions. Most do not have the same harmful side effects that modern chemicals have.

This reminds me of something very similar, the quote "Let thy food be thy medicine" - Hippocrates


Today we spend so much time getting pills to fix us or using chemicals to get around our health issues. Example: Aspartame - can be used in the place of sugar, giving diabetics the ability to eat sweets. Ummm You're a diabetic, DONT EAT SUGAR! It's really not a work around to getting the sweets you want. It's a death sentence. My dear uncle passed away not to long ago with out his legs. Others in my family are right now experiencing the side effects of diabetes. Vision loss, numbness in the legs and feet, disorientation and depression. Why? Because they insist on eating sugar or sugar substitutes and they are slowing poisoning themselves.

You can heal yourself by changing your lifestyle. You can open your eyes to the chemicals and poisons you're putting into your body. You can slowly get off the preservatives and artificial coloring. You can get that out of your system and start to heal your body. I found a book a few years ago (Thanks to my daughter) called Prescription for Nutritional Healing. This book goes through hundreds and hundreds of illnesses that we currently treat with traditional medicine and gives a suggested nutritional change to help correct this issues.

I've been able to stop my prescription medications and live life. I have been diagnosed with BP, BPD, Reflux & Fibromyalgia.

As well as the PMS, Pre-Diabetes and Pre-Menopause as well as 17 other personality disorders. Wow, that's a lot of copayments, eh? Not to mention the prescriptions, I had three or four for a couple of those listed above and then one or two for the remaining. That put my monthly charges for prescriptions over 140.00 a month. Well no wonder I couldn't afford to eat healthy food. I was blowing all my money on drugs.

Over the past year my hubby and I have slowly switched over to organic food. We're working to improve our stress levels by adding some meditation. Recently we tried to take the 21 day meditation challenge and failed miserably. We ended up stopping after three days. Not so good. But we are working on the other issues.

Our water bottles and food storage containers are BPA free. Our water is filtered, but not purchased in bottles. Our food is as fresh and as organic as we can get. We've been hitting the gym pretty regularly, however recently "life" has started to creep back and its fallen to the side. We'll need to get back on track with that soon.

Looking back over the centuries and looking forward, you would think that we as a race, the human race, would have found all sorts of medical cures and fascinating discoveries to prolong life, and to make those added years fruitful. Instead we've discovered more cancers, more diseases and are looking at the first generation to have a shorter life expectancy than their parents.

Time to wake up and smell the chemicals...

Starting with small things you can make simple changes to your life that will make you feel so much better. Something as simple as avoiding caffeine can reduce the symptoms of PMS. No need to drop a pill. Park a little farther from the mall entrance. Drink water instead of soda. You can do this.

Remember a trip around the world starts with a single step.


Blessed Be
)O(

Donuts and Desires: It's never ok to say "That's so GAY"~Gorgeous Poster

I found this poster on a blog called Donuts Desires and just wanted to share it.





Blessed Be
)O(

Something 'round here smells...

So I just got back from the post office sending back an order of Avon's Black Suede Deodorant. I ordered from Avon to help a friend's fund raiser and ordered about $12 worth of deodorant for my hubby. This order was processed quickly and shipped very quickly. Ordered Thursday, it arrived Monday.




Sadly when I opened the box and read the ingredients I found a huge problem. Almost all deodorants on the market today contain tricloson and/or aluminum. Both of these chemicals have been linked to major health problems;

Triclosan is known to cause cancer in and aluminum has been linked to Alzheimer's disease. In deodorant, aluminum comes in the form of aluminum chlorhydrate which is a heavy metal that can be absorbed through the skin. When you apply these chemicals to an area near the underarm lymph nodes they are very easily distributed throughout the body. (Credit)



So I had to send it back. It cost me 7.50 to return the package. So now, I'm out almost $20 and still have no deodorant for my hubby.


After work today we're off to Whole Foods. I plan to locate a nice Crystal Salt Rock for him (which is what I use) or maybe something from Tom's Of Maine.

And a bit of advice... Don't buy anything at all on the web unless you can clearly read the ingredients. Don't assume that just because a company does not test on animals that they won't test on you!

Blessed Be!

NON-GMO Shopper's Guide



Today I'd like to share information about how to find NON-GMO food. Eating healthy, and adding more fruits and veggies to your diet is a great way to treat your body better, get in better shape and to improve your over all well being. Moving to Organics takes it up a notch and will help insure that you're not getting genetically modified foods.

You may say, Hey! What's wrong with it, if the FDA says it's ok then why can't I eat it? Well, the FDA says a lot of things. They are constantly approving drugs only to recall them later because they have been found to be harmful. We have not done a great deal of testing on GM foods. We do not know what the harm can be. Have you noticed that a lot of our children are being born with ADHD, ADD & Autism? Have you noticed that a lot of kids experience food allergies? Why is that? Have you noticed that as we move forward in medical and scientific research that we still have the highest number of cancers?



There's a reason for that. Your grandparents were able to eat Ham & Eggs every morning w/o having problems because they were eating just that "Ham" and "Eggs". Today, our hogs are fed what? What about the chickens? Any idea why it's cheaper to get a candy bar than an organic banana? High Fructose Corn Syrup(HFCS)! Yes! It's cheap and it's deadly! I'm not saying that all HFCS is GMO but the amount of corn that is grown today to make it IS.

When you take genetic material and move it around, you really don't have a clue what that does. Everyone freaked totally out when we cloned a sheep, but no one bats an eye, when we modify genes in plants and then EAT THEM????

I found a website called "The True Food Network", that offers a mobile download for your iPhone or Android Phone that you can use to check on if a food you're about to buy in the grocery store is a Non-GMO food. We in the US do not have the luxury of our Government requiring these Franken-foods to be labeled as they are in the UK.
*Photo Credit

Want to avoid GMOs? Just go Organic, If a food product is labeled 100% organic and is labeled with and USDA Organic seal, it must be completely free of genetically modified products by government regulations. On the other hand, foods that are labeled "Made with Organic Ingredients" or simply "Organic" are not as tightly regulated and can contain GMOs. To be sure your food is GMO-free, buy USDA certified 100% organic food.




I keep hearing over and over and over, But it's sooo expensive to eat organic food. I beg to differ. Yesterday Jennifer Grayson, founding editor of The Red, White & Green, posted a video showing that she was able to buy all organic food and create a well balanced meal on $33 dollars a week. That's what the average food stamp recipient receives from the government.


This can be done! And remember, it's a buyers market, the more organic food we buy, the more they will replace it with new organic food. Wal-Mart doesn't really care if we buy chips or cucumbers, all they want to see is a SOLD sign. They will add what sells. They will remove what doesn't. If we want more organics available we have to buy the organics that are already out there.

Helpful URLs
Foods to Always Eat Organic
Treehugger.com
Food & Water Watch
GM Watch
Millions Against Monstanto
Organic.org


Remember you are what you eat!

Blessed Be

Bipolar Awareness - Embrace the Sparkle 3

In my continuing series on Bipolar Awareness, I want to take a minute to help those around us to learn to embrace the sparkle as well.




Being in a relationship with someone who has bipolar disorder is challenging to say the least. I know that the things that I do sometimes make no sense at all. I look back after having a mania or a depression and think, How on earth could anyone put up with that crap. One moment acting as though I have the best life in the world, not twenty minutes later I can be in the midst of a gut wrenching depression. It happens so quickly sometimes I don't even know it's started or ended. I just realize it a few hours or even days later.

I'm lucky enough to be classified as a high functioning bipolar. This is all well and good when I'm not in a mania. Mania is still mania. I still run into the issues of the average bipolar patient. Through mediation, diet and routine I've been able to maintain a somewhat steady roller coaster ride for those around me. My hubby has learned how to see what's coming, and guide me back down gently. Or take me for a walk at the state park to help me center, or even sometimes take me to the loudest place he can find, to help my mind devour all the chaos it can. He's found, this is the best way to help me.

Several Groups out there to assist with support for Friends, Family and loved ones of those with Bipolar Disorder are below:


BPSO - Bipolar Significant Others
About.Com - Bipolar Support
Healthy Place

I'm currently looking for any good books out there have the techniques for healing with some of the Bipolar behavior. If I find some I'll post them here. I'd love to hear any suggestions in the comments.


Remember, Bipolar isn't the end of the world. You can live with it and love with it. It can be done.

Embrace the Sparkle.

Blessed Be

The Balanced Witch

I found a new site today called "The Balanced Witch". Some of you may already be familiar with it but I wanted to share it just the same. I found it on Twitter (@balancedwitch) and they have some really wonderful information there.

There is lots of information as well as giveaways. Now we know we all like giveaways! They're "Spring Fling" giveaway consists of the following: This drawing will start with five (5) winners, each who will each receive a $10 gift certificate from Amazon.com. For each 100 entries, I will add another winner up to 10. These certificates will be delivered via email directly from Amazon after I have confirmed email addresses for the winners. One prize per person.

So take a look over at the Balanced Witch to check their stuff out. And get ready for Spring!

Blessed Be

Celebrations of Spring - Ostara

Photo Credit - Renee Olson




Ostara is a holiday celebrating the Spring or Vernal Equinox, and with the beginning of any new life. Equinox, the day when daylight and darkness are equal usually occurs between March 19th and March 23rd Originally the entire month of April was known in Europe as Ostarmonth, and featured celebrations of fertility, birth and renewal centering on the Goddess Ēostre. When Europe became Christianised, the name was changed to Easter.(How to Celebrate Ostara)

Not one for rules and regulations I've always been a more free spirited and not specifically Wiccan. (Is that even possible?) This is the first year I plan to try to actively participate in as many of the holidays as I can. For Ostara, my hubby and I will be planting our tomatoes, cucumbers and maybe even some other veggies. We were shooting for the full moon on the 19th so I will probably hold a few plants over and save for Ostara.

Photo Credit - Stock


I'm extremely excited about the full moon this month. Called a "Super Moon" by some in the media. I plan to do some crystal cleansing and to see if I can draw down some of that lunar energy. My anxiety has gone down quite a bit since the weekend. I was attributing some of my feelings on issues with my family however the more I think about it and review what I'm feeling the more I think it could be related to the moon. I'm not sure I'm ready to say that it's going to bring about the end times, or even blame the moon for the Tsunami, but I can say that we're made of water, we know the moon pulls on water. It's what regulates our tides. It's got to have some sort of an effect on us. I found a really great article on Space.com about our Super Moon.

The main thing I think I'm going to try to do is surround my altar and home with flowers. I'm looking forward to a great day.

www.nowpublic.com/culture/balancing-egg-equator


I'm also very curious to hear if anyone is able to balance an egg!

There's a Disturbance....

All last week hubby had a horrible neck pain and almost a complete migraine. I was seeing shadows and had a feeling that I like to describe in two ways....

1. There's a disturbance in the Force
or
2. My spider sense is tingling


It's always something odd and I can't put my finger on it. But then I look around at the days since that feeling and I see earthquakes, Tsumani, nuclear meltdown, explosions, civil wars, no fly zones, and protesting little children's funerals because "GOD" said so.


HOLY CRAP no wonder I feel a disturbance!

How is it possible that we cannot have a feeling of unity and humanity right now? How is it possible that we still see comments referencing that this was some sort of justice brought to a nation because of a war years (Pearl Harbor) and years ago... Or we seen some star tweeting from his mansion "the wave hit like bam and those white boys tried to surf".... UMMMM

Dude really?

I mean I know we have ignorant people in the world. I know that we have hateful people in the world. Hell, I even know we have ignorant hateful people in the world.. but for crying out loud, do something constructive with your words. Why send out more negativity? Don't we have enough of that?

My 95 year old grandmother always says... If you don't have anything nice to say, don't say anything at all. HELLO?? I think that should apply to Tweets & Status Updates too!

We need a big ole system purge. REBOOT the SYSTEM. In non-whack-a-doodle terms, I mean just BREATH.

Take a moment, BEFORE YOU TWEET, and take a big deep breath.


On a much more positive note, I've seen several prayer circles and positive thought circles going around on the social networking sites. This morning I plan to hold a healing circle for all the woes that we have going on today. I welcome everyone, of whatever religion or belief system to take a few minutes and just breath. Nod to your God/Goddess, acknowledge Mother Nature, Feel the winds or just send a positive thought out into the world.

Right now we need all the good energy we can get.

Blessed Be
Sosanna

Seventh Generation Contest

Seventh Generation is offering 6 months of free products to the winner of their contest. All you need to do is go to this link and write 250 words or more about why winning would help your family go green.

Here's my entry.


Why will winning six months of Seventh Generation products help my family go green?


About 6 years ago my husband and moved from sunny San Diego to my little home town of Seven Springs NC. When we moved we were both vegetarian and in the process of dropping some pounds to get into shape. Keep in mind I realize that round is a shape, but I preferred to be a little less round.

When we got here, we found it incredibly difficult to continue on our Vegetarian path. We slowly began to eat more and more “bad” food and I found myself surrounded by chemicals being sprayed in the fields across the street from my house, to chemicals in our foods at the store to chemicals in my house hold cleaning supplies. It was never ending.

My daughter worked at our local health food store (Health Habit of Goldsboro) and started bringing home things that were good for me. Like any other stubborn mother who feels she knows everything I scoffed and decided my way was the proven way and better. So I never tried anything. Then she brought home Seventh Generation Multi-surface Cleaner, Lemon Grass and Thyme. AMAZING Product!

I loved the way it smelled and better yet, I loved that it was safe to use around my animals. I use it to clean up around our Chihuahua puppies, our Cats and even to clean my Ferret cage. I don’t have to use a lot of it and it lasts a long time.

Slowly I’ve changed how I look at the items I buy for my home. I’ve started looking for the leaping bunny on many of the items I buy as well as looking for all natural, healthy ways to clean my house and laundry. I’ve started weeding out the nasty stuff with the chemicals and started buying the good stuff, which isn’t always cheap.

Winning a six month supply of Seventh Generation products would put me on the fast track to being greener. My husband currently shops and prepares food for two other families to assist them in going Organic. We pool our money together and cook multiple household meals to save, money, energy and to afford the higher price of organic foods. We’ve started introducing our friends to cleaning products, personal hygiene items and food stuff that will help not only ourselves but those we love and care about experience the great feeling of doing not only what’s good for you and your body, but what’s good for your planet too.


Blessed Be!

21 Day Meditation Challenge

So yesterday I got an email from my husband. Yes, an email. From the living-room. 8)



The email simply said. Join me for 15 minutes in the living-room. Confused by this random email I read further..... Everynight for the next 21 days we're going to sit together, hold hands, close our eyes and meditate.

Now for those of you that know my husband you'd think, he did what? Not really into the whole spirituality of meditation I never thought he would really be into this. So last night, after dinner, and in our jammies, we whipped out the yoga mats, put on Merlin's Magic, lit some Nag Champa and sat face to face, holding hands for 15 minutes. After the initial giggling and finding a comfortable position I have to say that I rather enjoyed it and I'm actually looking forward to tonight.

There's a since of calm that falls over you when you are able to find that spot and just be. I need to be for a while. It's been a little go go go over the last weeks and yet again, it's hubby to the rescue.

So if you're interested, he follows "ecomii blogs - The Food and Health Alternative" by Marie Oser. Yesterday she tweeted about the 21 Day Meditation Challenge. Hubby thought it was a great idea and added it to my daily routine. I'm very excited about it and hope to have good things to say as my challenge days pass by.

Need some Meditation Chants?

Ommmmmmmmmmm mani padme Ommmmmmmmmmmm



Blessed Be

Bipolar Awareness - Embrace the Sparkle 2

I thought the best time to post an update for the Bipolar Awareness blog would be when I'm experiencing some symptoms.

The last couple of weeks have been pretty trying for me. I've had some issues in my professional life and then in my personal life with my extended family.

As I mentioned in my last post "Embrace the Sparkle", routine is very important for the Bipolar person. WebMD has a very good article on routines being beneficial for bipolar patients. My routine has been very disrupted lately. Things changing at the last minute. Missing workouts. Nothing that seems too tragic but have amazing results on my mind. Last night I woke at 1:30 am and laid in bed mind racing until after 4:00 am. The brain just goes and goes and goes sometimes. I always lay and review the events of the day... what did I do wrong ... what did I do right ... should I do something different... Go go go go

Looking back at this last week I can see what led up to my night last night. My work week was stressed completely out to put it mildly. My issues with my mother and my birthday were not pleasant at all. I have two younger sisters that I do not get along well with. And last night, the youngest of them posted that lesbians are disgusting on her status message on Facebook. So immediately my brain took that and ran with it. My self worth is in the dump because of some post a 21 year old with two kids no job no education and no husband just made. A comment that means nothing really, but in my brain means everything. I gave it the power to keep me up. I gave it the power to rule me all night long.




Being bipolar does not make you a victim. It makes you think differently. Finding your triggers, pointing them out as that... You you and you are triggers. I like to think of it like Glenda, the Good Witch of The Wizard of Oz.... I need to look at my triggers and say... BE GONE! YOU have NO power here! And if necessary, whip out the house to drop on them! (Figuratively of course)

So take a moment, after a mania or a depressive episode and jot down what could have caused it. What are your triggers. Label them, and banish them. Use a word, use a spell, consult a witch, go to church, talk to a friend .... Do whatever you have to do to identify and control those triggers...

And most of all, Embrace the Sparkle


Blessed Be

*Glenda Photo from http://www.andrewgarvey.com

Tiki - Found a home

Awwww Missed out on little Tiki. She found a great home with someone else.


Perhaps there's another little witches dog out there with my name on it.

Blessed Be

Spring is in the Air!

The Positive....
I woke this morning from a semi-restful slumber in a loving embrace. The sun gently peeked in around the black out curtains and poked me playfully hoping that I would jump up and embrace the day.

vs.

The Negative....
The alarm clock pelted me over the head repeatedly until I pulled my arm out from under the covers in some zombiesque pose to silence the torturous screams pelting my brain as if destroying the world from millions of killer clowns from outer space.





Looking at these two openings we can see that prospective is everything. There were no killer clowns this morning, only the wonderful sun to gently nudge me out the bed. I browsed through CNN this morning and saw that Gary Busey is now praying for Charlie Sheen. Wow. You know you're pretty messed up when that happens. I saw Mt Kilauea is erupting, a girl is selling her x's clothes on eBay and laws are being passed to ban "Sharia Law" from being followed in the US.

Wow. So much to poke fun at so little time. Instead of pulling out my little book of puns, I've decided to opt out of discussing world events and talk about Spring.

I've started Spring cleaning by listing a lot of books up on eBay. I've started pulling weeds in the garden and having a look at the plants that are available at Lowe's.

Here are some followers that I just couldn't walk past without whipping out my camera.







The lettuce is planted and we added some brussel sprouts last week. We're going to start spouting the cucumbers this week to go down in the full moon. That's when the tomatoes will go in as well. Hopefully we'll have some good veggies this year.

The last thing I want to talk about is adopting from the shelter. Saturday, hubby took me to our local shelter and we found Tiki. (I called her that because she reminds me of a little tiki idol doll) She wasn't available until today so he's headed down there now to see if we can give this little girl a home. She looked terrified in the kennel but had nothing but kisses for me when I was able to pet her. And just look at her... she looks like a witches dog!

So take a minute to drive down to your local shelter, search Petfinder.com or Petharbor.com. These are all great dogs that if given the chance they could be your new best friend. You never know, you just might save a life.

Hope to see you soon Tiki!





Blessed Be

Bipolar Awareness - Embrace the Sparkle

As many of you know I have bipolar disorder. I don't say "Suffer" from bipolar because I believe that if you look at your life as "suffering through" something, that's exactly what you're going to get. Suffering.

Yesterday a page that I follow on Networked Blogs called Bipolar Awareness posed the following question: If someone was just diagnosed with bipolar disorder yesterday and came to you to ask, What should I do? What would I answer?

My first direction to this person would be, find something that helps you cope. Some people have dolls they hold, a worry stone or a talisman of some sort. Some people rub their thumb and forefinger together. I use a couple of things to help quiet my mind. First let me say that I've had years and years of non-coping and acting out. I still live with mania and depression so it's not a cure all.

My coping mechanisms vary but first is music. I find that when I listen to happy music in the mornings it helps me be less manic through out the day. I start my day when I'm feeling either a mania or depression starting by listening to Ricky Martin's The Best Thing About Me Is You. Sometimes I listen to it over and over, thank goodness for iTunes and "repeat 1"

I turn on the iPod when I go to bed (attached to speakers) and listen to Reiki Healing and repeat a song called "Merlin's Magic". I've found that I sleep better and don't wake up after two hours feeling like I need to clean the house!

After a very rough week at work this week, I found that another way to quiet my mind is to close my eyes and imagine a balloon or bubble, (mine's a blue squishy balloon) use your mind to bounce the bubble/baloon up in air, much like when you were a kid and you try not to let the balloon/bubble touch the ground. It was pretty effective.

An important part of treating bipolar is routine. I try to be sure I have a routine for what I need to do through out the day. Gym - 5:30 Work 7:00 Breakfast 8:30 and so on. This helps my brain understand that there are certain places for certain things and I don't have to be panicked because I know what's coming next. Over the past 4 years I've added some rituals to my morning. I start out calling the quarters and then thank the elements for giving me another beautiful day. Just getting in touch with nature has helped me so much.

After my routine is my diet. Lots of foods today have additives and preservatives that have a number of side effects. Headaches, bloating anxiety nothing that I need, I'm almost 75% organic right now and hopefully will see more improvements as I go. There's lots of info on good diets for bipolar patients are available on the web. Be sure to discuss any diet changes with your doctor and watch for conflicts with your medications and foods.

My last suggestion to a newly diagnosed bipolar patient is find someone to talk to. You may feel like you're a big ole nut bag. You're not. You just have a different way of thinking about things. I like to think about it like this. We sparkle. Sometimes we sparkle more than other times. We see vibrant color and hear wonderful music. You can embrace the best parts of this and make it a wonderful part of who you are instead of focusing on the negative.

More often then not... I sparkle.


Blessed Be

What's in a Name??

So my post today is reviewing names and labels. I know a lot of you are thinking that I'm going to be talking about LGBT issues. Well you're right. Only this issue is not only important to the LGBT Community but to that other special group of people called "Humans".

Today I'm talking about the label's we put on our food. How do you know the "right" foods to buy.



Wikipedia defines Organic Food as the following:

"Organic foods are those that are produced using environmentally sound methods that do not involve modern synthetic inputs such as pesticides and chemical fertilizers, do not contain genetically modified organisms, and are not processed using irradiation, industrial solvents, or chemical food additives."

Going organic is easier than you might think. Currently retailers such as Wal-Mart & Food Lion are picking following up the trail blazer "Whole Foods" in carrying a good number of organic choices in their shops. You can find Food Lion's Store Brand - Nature's Place that has a large selection of Organic items from rice to canned vegetables. Wal-Mart (under the name Market-side & Great Value - Warning not all products are Organic, you must read the labels) does offer the same types of items in Organics but goes further to include fresh produce as well, Celery, Lettuce and Bananas are available.







The next label you want to concern your self is on the back side of the package. Take a look at the Nutrition Facts. Here you want to check out a few things. First and foremost, SERVING SIZE. This is incredibly important. In our society of "Super Size" and "Extra Large" we've become just that... Our population is "Extra Large". Be sure to follow your service size. The only sure fire way, to be a healthy weight and to stay that way is to balance your caloric intake with your caloric expenditure. To lose weight, burn more than you eat. Very simple. Yes that means exercise. Get up and move.


(Source: Children's Hospital of the Kings Daughters Original Image Here)


Check that label for other words that let you know that this product is not that good for you.
Words like - High Fructose Corn-syrup, Aspartame and Maltodexterin to name a few. Generally speaking, if you can't pronounce it. Don't eat it. If it comes wrapped in cellophane wrapper then it's probably not that good for you.

Look for items label'd NO GMOs(Genetically Modified Organism), No Additives or Preservatives. These groups are certified non GMO

(Source - Food Democracy)

The idea here is to eat whole, fresh, local foods. Look for Organic label and use only those products when you can. Smell your fresh fruits and veggies.... Your nose KNOWS what you want to eat. If it smells good to you, then it's probably what your body wants.

These links can get you started on going Organic, yes, sometimes the foods cost a little more. But they do cost less than treating Cancer.

Blessed Be

Organic.org
Go Veg!
Rocky Mountain Organic Meats
WholeFoods Market