Monday, July 29, 2013

Alive and Well

“Fear creates disease, love heals all. How many people know this?” asks Dr. Brian Clement of a roomful of people who had come to hear him talk about the healing power of eating live food and other radically successful  approaches offered at The Hippocrates Institute in Florida.

This cutting edge medical center has taught hundreds of thousands of people how to help themselves actualize a life free from premature aging, disease and needless pain. They work with people who have given up hope struggling with diseases from cancer to diabetes, as well as ‘smart people’ who are awake enough to know that unless we make significant changes, physically, emotionally and spiritually, our health and enjoyment of life is limited. Bottom line is: If you want health and vitality on all those levels you need to wake up!

Dr. Clement and his wife Anna Maria have a startling success rate in their work and offer scientific clinical data backed up with  their testing of over 40,000 people, over the past 60 years. They are saving lives! People who were told they only had weeks or months to live, regained their health.
This weekend was a symposium of information, not all of it comfortable to hear. It was also a taste sensation of creative delectable raw food that was offered by the cities best raw food restaurants, including Eternal Abundance, my personal favorite on commercial drive in Vancouver. 
If you think of raw food as crunching on celery you have to get down there and check out their delights, from soups and salads to main course treasures and gorgeous sugar and gluten free desserts. The manager's name is Alex and she is not only a generous and talented soul but fierce in her creativity and commitment to the environment.

In many ways my world felt rocked this weekend. Realizing that Canada has just become the first country in the world where cancer is the number one killer, finally beating the States, where heart disease still tops the list, was an eye opener. My illusions about health and wellness, as well as the environment were being burst one after another and all roads seemed to lead me to conclude that I had to broaden my perspective and make another radical shift in consciousness.
I have done so much emotional and spiritual work. This time I had to focus on the physical. Food, exercise, the body, and the impact of what I was eating, on the environment. Now I have always been a healthy eater but after this weekend I felt called to do more. And luckily my new roommate, who no doubt you will hear more about, comes with all the appliances to help make this transformation possible.

The Clements advocate a 75% raw vegan diet, filled with blue green algae, sprouts and grasses. They are ecstatic about the nutritional benefits of juicing and detoxing and as Dr. Clement shouts out…It's not for sissies!   Well I may be a lot of things but a sissy is not one of them. I am going to try this lifestyle fully and see. My final authority is always how I feel, but I will give it a solid month or two and reassess. I will keep you posted.

First though Buns and I are going to Vegas. That’s right, Vegas. Starting a juice detox and eating all my food raw in Vegas is just not in the cards. (Pun intended)  Having an adventure with my buddy is.

Can you imagine explaining to customs the contents of my baggy filled with blue green power?

 “It’s algae officer, you drink it or put it in gel caps and it is the world’s most complete food, a super food really, with antioxidant compounds and it boosts your immune system. Honestly, it’s not a controlled substance, and no, I wasn’t planning on selling it in America sir, although it does actually make you feel pretty darned good and yes I would consider sharing.”

I don’t look in orange overalls. I sense the above story would not have a happy ending so I will wait until we return. 

Branded by transformation, (Only delayed by one week)

Authentically Yours,


Monday, July 15, 2013

Feelin' the love.

Recently I have been looking at how I’ve been trying to attract the perfect partner or soul mate into my life.  I think I’m ready, I can manifest like the best of them, but not when it comes to this. Clearly.

So like a witch who has to check the number of bat lashes, frog lips, and eyes of newts she’s using in her spell, I am looking at the way in which I can improve the recipe.

The first thing I found was that yes, I am envisioning that it has already happened, and I have basically instructed the Universe to get to work. What I didn’t realize was, that underneath it all, I actually had my sights set on someone who I find particularly attractive in many ways (but who may not be the best choice for me). So the Universe was probably waiting until I was actually open to other possibilities.

Once I figured that one out, bang!  Out of the blue, a friend introduces me to a her friend on Faceplant, and we begin chatting.  I must say I admire the Universe’s sense of humour.  This new one has the same name as the guy that I’m fatally attracted to! There is lots of resonance with this new guy but also a significant amount of resistance on my part. I found myself coming up with all kinds of reasons why it might not work.  And I mean really silly reasons. And then if he didn’t get in touch for a period of time, I’d get all worried thinking I’d done something wrong. I felt like a complete failure at this whole attraction thing.

So I had to look at that.  Did it mean that I’m not actually ready?  I had thought for a while that I was protecting my heart after losing Duncan and so was satisfied with the myriad of male friends that I have collected over the years, enjoying their company enormously but definitely at arm’s length.  What I realize is that while my heart is more open, I am worried about having to suffer loss again, and so I only have been allowing myself (or a potential suitor) to only go so far. And then I come up with “the reason” why I’m not interested. 

So how’s that been working for me so far?  It hasn’t been.  And yet there’s a huge part of me that absolutely believes that everything is as it should be right now. I just might end up being the most fascinating old single woman with a gazillion male friends and as many stories to go along with it.  Or I might end up with the exact opposite type of guy that I think I want and be completely and utterly in love with him for the rest of my life.

I think I’m going to put all this on the Universe’s “to do” list and give it a rest. I’ll let you know how it goes…

Branded by whatev…


And this is a must listen...

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

The New Normal

A beautiful group of individuals that I have been mentoring, graduated yesterday. It was no ordinary graduation! For the past three years they have been shining a light on every part of their psyche and their souls. Yesterday I had the honor of witnessing them claim their magnificence.

Self awareness is no longer a niche or some obscure option delegated to ashrams and navel gazing on mountain tops. Most people these days are not content with ‘how’s the weather’ and even a brief wondering about life with a ‘is this all there is’ query is not deep enough to satisfy. More and more people want something radical. They want to know themselves outside of convention. They long for inner knowing that goes beyond what they do for a living, the roles they play, the roles that were inherited and the programs that run us.

People want to wake up and answer the most existential of all questions…who am I? Attaining that answer is a process, a journey and a true hero’s quest that can never be fulfilled within the stable confines of a box.

 The twenty one diverse individuals who stood before family, friends and strangers yesterday had become fearless in their commitment to break free of self imposed limitations and fall in love with themselves. They stood up one at a time, emotionally naked and shared their stories. As they revealed buried secrets, exposed the critical voices in their heads that had once ruled them and claimed what they would now stand for in the world, their inner light brightened until all defenses dissolved.

They stepped into true power.  Freedom! Passion! Joy! Connection! These values were not just words but rather specific action steps and ways of being they were demonstrating and committing to living in the world. No longer held hostage by circumstance or another’s behavior, they fully accepted their flawed humanness, accepted all parts of themselves and landed in the solid knowing that they were one hundred percent responsible for their inner state…no one else. Pass the Kleenex. I felt so proud.

Can you imagine living this way? What would you do or say to live so transparently that you teach radical honesty in every moment, every relationship without exception? 

2012 heralded a time of change and I believe this is it! The call is no longer for a few individuals but for all of us to wake up and live authentically expressing our essential values.
What would that look like in your world?

To experience this intimate connection demands only one thing, one loss. You would have to lose control! You would have to drop strategy and defense and chose love over fear, vulnerability over defense, happiness over being right.

And when you meet people who have missed the memo, you would model your values proudly…lead by example.

This is the new normal!
This is the aphrodisiac of the soul!


Branded by transparency,

Authentically Yours,

Monday, July 1, 2013

Happy Canada D'eh!

I have spent Canada Day over the years in many different places but none better than up at the lake in Ontario on our family island.  Two and a half acres of wooded bliss.  My Dad built a 10 x 12 cabin to house the seven of us in the early years.  I was two years old when I first went there and many moons later, it is still one of my favourite places on earth.

The potable water (Anstruther Lake tea is still the best), the loons calling in the early morning through the mist, no electricity or running water, and hundreds of campfires over which we cooked our meals and sang at the top of our lungs, often collapsing in laughter at my Dad’s falsetto, or our own made-up words to well-known classics.  And yes, accompanied by the twang and giggles of fledgling ukulele players.  (My dog has fleas!!)

I remember being fascinated by the moon and making sure that my sisters and I slept outdoors when there was a full moon – in our bathing suits – to see if we would get moon tans. The boys on the lake enjoyed buzzing the island with their motorboats, knowing full well we would be thrilled by their attentions as we scampered about in our bikinis.

Aaah… so many delicious memories – the annual mile-long swim (since named after my Dad), learning how to water ski and wind surf, picking enough wild blueberries for Mom to make us her superb home-made pies, huddling in the tent during magnificent thunderstorms, sliding down the moss-laden waterfalls at the nearby portage, cliff diving, fishing for bass, canoeing and learning how to gunwhale bob… oh! and the first time I was allowed to take the boat without an adult over to the landing (I think I grew a foot that day).  After that, any excuse to do “errands” for Dad, I was at the ready!

As we all grew, so did the need for a larger cabin.  We set to building the current main cabin (20 x 40).  I was the chief electrician as we decided to bring hydro onto the island.  Dad painstakingly taught me how to run wire, drill the holes in the 2 x 4s and hook up the outlets and switches.  I think I was about 12 or 13. To this day, it doesn’t phase me (pun intended) to try and fix malfunctioning circuitry. (I can even do a three-way switch!)

I learned so much on those summer weekends.  I loved Dad teaching me how to do things that I didn’t know I would enjoy learning!  I just loved being with him because he was so passionate about his little corner of Canada.  It was and is quintessentially Canadian.  I love it there.

When both my boys were born, I made it a priority to spend some time there with each of them so they would hopefully get imbued with my love of the place. They were so tiny, I could heat up water on the Coleman stove and pour it into the cooler for their bath. I’d sit on the dock in perfect silence (except for the odd mosquito!) and sing to them. It was the perfect place to bond with my wee boys. To this day, Sean is deeply connected to it, and were Duncan still with us, I know he would be too. I am hoping to take some of his ashes there this year… that’s been a long time coming but it feels just right.

Thank you Dad for holding your vision so brightly to own a piece of Canada that is indelibly printed on my heart.  Thank you Mom for being there, every weekend, feeding not just us, but all our friends that you so generously included on the grocery list and in your heart. Thank you to my siblings for the roles you played in my cottage life. I can’t stop smiling when I think about us all up at the lake … you know what I’m talking about.

And the tradition carries on!  Now my nephews and nieces spend their weekends there and right now, I know they are celebrating Canada Day as the photo shows… standing at the end of the dock, with sparklers, saluting the place that is in our hearts. Thanks to my nephew, Riley Found, for this fabulous picture.  (And by the way, the boat in the photo, is the one I took my maiden voyage in, all those years ago…)

I love my country and the people and places that I am fortunate enough to have in my life.

Happy Canada Day.

Branded by wholesome cottage life,

Patriotically yours,