Life is beautiful!

One of the absolute best things about the world wide web is the fact that anybody and everybody can share their hopes, dreams, thoughts, wisdom, advice- well, just about anything they want. Yes, of course, you have to take the good with bad, but, now and then, you happen upon something really good. The other day I happened across something really, really good.

A post on elepantjournal.com titled “50 Reasons Why You Are Absolutely Beautiful” by a yoga instructor named Linnea Jensen-Stewart, caught my eye. I read the first few lines and I was definitely intrigued…


”Beauty is this word that is often thrown around conditionally… To me, beauty is a celebration of everything in our lives- even the stuff that we shove deep down in hopes of never seeing that “ugliness” again- it’s the organic substance that fuels our gorgeous smile, and breathtaking laugh. Beauty in its rawness can’t be faked.”

She definitely nailed it with  her opening words-”Beauty is a celebration of everything in our lives.” Love it. “Beauty in its rawness can’t be faked.” Powerful words. Her list of “50 Reasons” was incredibly thought provoking, inspiring, and insightful.

Here’s my faves:

  • You are beautiful when you are afraid to do something, and you do it anyway.
  • If you have been to hell and back, your resilience is beautiful.
  • Your eyes are beautiful. Nobody else has eyes like yours. They are deep and authentic and instantly recognizable.
  • Beauty is being brave enough to embrace your feelings- the good, the bad, and the ugly. To open yourself to the possibility that there is something magnificent there.
  • Beauty is laughing so hard your stomach hurts and you’re yelling, “Stop! Seriously, I’m peeing!” Yes. Peeing your pants can be beautiful.
  • Beauty is not letting ignorance be mistaken for truth. Even if you’re the one in the dark.
  • Beauty is calling someone out for saying something hurtful, even if you weren’t the one getting hurt.
  • Intelligence is beautiful.
  • Humor. There is nothing more beautiful than laughter.
  • Compassion is very, very beautiful.
  • Strong opinions are beautiful.
  • Respecting other people’s strong opinions is beautiful too.
  • Beauty is your hometown, whether you love it or hate it, because it helped shape you who you are.
  • Listening is beautiful. Choosing to respond instead of react- even if you don’t want to hear it- trusting that there is always something valuable in someone else’s words.
  • Having faith in someone else’s word, because we know we’ve been true to our own. That is beautiful.
  • It is beautiful to find the strength to ask for help when you need it. No matter how successful you are. We all feel like we’re drowning sometimes, and we would all be glad to pull you from the rapids.
  • Beauty is loving your pet as much as they love you.
  • Humility is beautiful.
  • It is beautiful to be grateful to all the strong people who came before you: the ones who raised you, the ones who fought for your rights, the ones who were burned at the stake because they were too powerful.
  • Happiness is beautiful. Never be ashamed of being happy.

Beauty is grace, fear, respect, compassion, laughter, tears, faith, humility and love. Beauty is anything and everything you want it to  be. So often we get wrapped up in the physical aspects of beauty that we forget about the beauty that surrounds us in our daily lives. Take a moment to stop and think about what’s beautiful in your life. Accept it. Appreciate it. Own it. Love it. Life is beautiful.

Here’s the link to the complete list. I promise, it’s all awesome. http://www.elephantjournal.com/2011/12/50-reasons-why-you-are-absolutely-beautiful–linnea-jensen-stewart/

A yummy oatmeal alternative…

In my quest for a healthy oatmeal alternative–you can only eat oatmeal for so long– I purchased Bob’s Red Mill 5 Grain Rolled Oat Cereal the other day. I’ve tried several other of Bob’s multi-grain hot cereals and this latest version is much better than the 10 grain chicken-feed-looking stuff I had been eating!

The cereal cooks up kind of creamy, with only water added, and a serving is just 120 calories. I added a Bosc pear, a teaspoon of brown sugar, a sprinkle of cinnamon, and popped it in the microwave. I must say, it was delicious! Definitely an excellent choice when you are tired of your usual, plain old oatmeal!

The cereal.
A pear instead of my usual apple was awesome!

The green smoothie!

Now and then a person happens upon a little something that is a potential life changer. Sometimes it’s something big- sometimes it’s not. Last week, I happened upon a little something that could be potentially major! What you ask? (Drum roll here…) Well, a bright green smoothie recipe of course!

While spending some quality time on the frightfully addicting Pinterest site, I happened upon the simplest of smoothie recipes. A smoothie that packs in nearly a day’s allotment of the recommended fruit and veggies? Are you kidding me?

I headed to the store and bought the ingredients. Spinach, check. Frozen peaches and berries, check. Bananas, check.

For those of you lost at spinach, don’t fret. I like spinach and even I was hesitant at first- but, determined nonetheless, to whip up this green concoction and head down the road to better health.

I tossed the ingredients in the blender, added some water and voila! A bright green smoothie!

I slowly took a sip and much to my surprise and relief, it tasted A-M-A-Z-I-N-G. Could it be that simple? Blend a few ingredients that pack such a MAJOR health punch? You bet!

And while my body isn’t sure exactly what to think of the sudden daily flood of nutrients, it is adjusting rather nicely. I’m on day eight of the green wonder drink and I feel pretty awesome. Give it a try! Your body (and taste buds) will love it!


Green Smoothie for Weight Loss

(http://lindawagner.net/blog/2011/03/green-smoothie-for-weight-loss/) 
    * 1-2 bananas
    * 1/2 cup frozen peaches
    * 1/2 cup frozen mango
    * a couple handfuls of spinach
    * water
    * ice (if desired)

Strawberries and peaches.
Blackberries, strawberries, and peaches.

*My grocery store was out of frozen mangoes so I substituted strawberries and blackberries. The color isn’t Shrek green like the original recipe produces,  but more of a pea soupy green; it gets even brownish with blackberries.  I use two large handfuls of spinach, two bananas,  a cup of each fruit and two cups of water, along with a tablespoon of chia seeds. I get about 25 oz. of the green stuff and sip on it for quite a while.
The original recipe!