28 September 2010

You Can Keep A Secret Can't You?

Of course you can! So you wont tell anyone that I'm doing a blog post right now when I should really be finishing my take-home exam for Human Disease Processes so I can send it in to uni before 4.30pm. Sssssh!

I've recently been thinking about the way I would like my life to be. A lot of people in my life have been landing great jobs, getting engaged, moving or travelling, and it really makes me think. What do I want for my life? Where do I want to be? What do I want to achieve? What kind of person do I want to be?

As you can probably tell, I adore my course! I have dreams of moving back to Albury, many years from now and working in a practice and in hospitals, helping and motivating people to make their lives better through their diet. I dream that it will be an affordable clinic, with student and pensioner discounts (and reasonable ones), where my clients will enjoy seeing me and not at all feel judged. A clinic that would really help and empower the community and be involved.

I also dream of living in a lovely house with a great kitchen, wonderful entertaining areas and enough room to have an impressive veggie patch, ducks, chickens, a pig, a goat, a sheep and a cow, and a couple of dogs and a cat, where my future children will be able to learn about where food comes from and get to run around the farm having the sort of adventures I used to have as a kid. Their friends will love to come over to our house and so will our friends. Matt has actually inherited a heritage listed (read: incredibly old and beautiful) farm house that we plan on renovating and living in, in many years time, of course. I would also like my house to be as environmentally friendly as possible, without being too obvious about it.

It is important to me to live back in the Albury-Wodonga area, because, although I never imagined it would happen, I really think of it as home more than anywhere else I have lived. My sister lives there, my mum lives near there and, strangely, a lot of my closest friends see themselves moving back to that area when they finally settle down. I think it's got something to do with growing up in small community. As much as I love Melbourne, it just isn't home.

Matt and I have been together for nearly  3 1/2 years, but we both agree that we don't want to get married at least until I've finished my course (so, end of 2012) and worked for long enough to save up some dosh. We both view marriage as this big, scary decision that we want to be emotionally and financially ready for. And while I realise life happens and things change, and that we can't exactly plan whats going to happen, it's nice to have that idea in mind, and it's been one thing we both wholly agree with. We also don't want to be one of those couples that gets engaged for 3 years. I personally don't see the point in that. And while I don't mean to offend anyone by writing this, I believe that getting engaged is saying, we want to get married, right now. So if the wedding happens within the next year or so, I personally think that makes sense. To me, that is what an engagement is.

I also believe that I personally am not ready to be married. While I do live with Matt and we share all of those things that you share when you live with someone, I still believe that marriage is one more step up on the relationship scale, the final step of 'seriousness' for a relationship. Lol. I suppose I just view marriage as this big decision that you can't rush into. I don't think my view on marriage is cynical, I just think that some people concentrate on the parts that aren't the most important as far as marriage is concerned. I know that the way my Dad is has a lot to do with it; he has been married 3 times and told 4 separate women that they are the 'love of his life' in my lifetime. I could go on about how pathetic it is, but it's not very interesting.

Having said that, I cannot wait for Ben and Sarah, Merrin and Rob and Leonie and Rav to get married! They are the type of couples that completely complement each other, make sense and are obviously happy without trying to rub it in your face. They are just wonderful people. So congrats to all of you! I love you to bits and can't wait to watch you create memories together.

Where do you see yourselves in the future? Are your dreams as homely as mine? Or do you dream of more? I'd love to hear about it. 
I also promise to get straight back to my take-home exam as soon as I post this.

Again, thank you for your patience while I go through exams. It is very much appreciated.

17 September 2010

Quick Home Remedies - Cheap and Natural - and Loving Earth Chocolate

Here I am, loving my course as usual! 
Last night in Food As Medicine we were discussing home kitchen remedies for common ailments, and I found it so fascinating. There are some really interesting people in this class who have lots of information on things I've never heard before, and my lecturer is one of those amazing people who are incredibly motivated and do so many things in their life, as well as being enthusiastic and level headed enough about the course material to actually get us all excited about it. Honestly, she is my favourite lecturer ever. The woman is amazing. But that's beside the point.

Point is, there are several things you can use at home to remedy illness and ailments. I even tried one when I got home last night and already have a result - I used fresh lemon juice on my acne, just before I went to bed, and although it stung for a few minutes, when I woke up this morning, my acne was less red, inflamed and sore than only 8 hours earlier, the night before. Try it!

Other remedies that are worth a try are;
Diarrhea - drink lemon juice in warm water
                 - grated apple skin, browned, and eaten slowly
Constipation - drinking more water (but you should really be doing this anyway! Dehydration makes your blood thicker, raising blood pressure, constipates you and makes detoxification much harder! Very important!)
                    - apple cider vinegar before meals
Heart Burn - 1/3 Tsp of Bi-carb soda in small amount of water (drink this)

So, these are just a few, but they are worth a try. I was very pleased when I woke up and my chin wasn't red or sore this morning - a nice change - gosh, am I sick of my acne!!!

Another thing I am going to try is frankincense essential oil for an awful fungus I have on the skin of my finger. It is supposed to be gentle enough for the skin, which I would really like, because all the pharmaceuticals I have tried to use on it in the past 3 years (yes, THREE years) have done nothing but destroy my skin and nails, and the fungus is still there. Sorry if I'm grossing you out. It really doesn't look bad, it just looks like dry, peeling skin.

I hope that this helps someone out. As far as I'm concerned, most illnesses out there can be directly linked to poor nutrition (not that the way I eat is perfect or anything, but I try my best). The only thing you can do is your best, but it can help to get an outside party to assess your diet and the issues that you have, and give you some suggestions to make it better. I did that two weeks ago, and was recommended several things that I have tried, and feel better for it. My acne is slowly getting better - my skin definitely looks better - and I have a bit more motivation and slightly less stress. 

Today marks officially two whole weeks without dairy - yay! I did it! - and I am ever so proud of myself, but my goodness, do I have a hankering for some cheese! I think I will keep dairy to an absolute minimum in my diet, as I have seen benefits while cutting it out completely. 

Now, I've just gotta work on my sugar intake - one of the side effects of being a student, lol. A naturopath recommended that I try Loving Earth chocolate, which is delicious! It is chocolate that has been made from certified organic, fair trade, raw cocoa, right here in Melbourne! Instead of sugar, it has agave syrup (a natural, low GI sweetener) and the flavours involve different superfoods - so far, my favourite is the Crunchy Mint. Because the cocoa used in the chocolate is raw, and not roasted it contains much more antioxidants than regular dark chocolate, and no dairy. I purchased it at a health food store and even own the raw cacao powder (which makes an excellent chocolate and banana soy smoothie).

So in a nutshell, Loving Earth Chocolate:
- is low GI
- is produced ethically
- is chemical free
- has lots of antioxidants
- is fair trade
- is sustainable
- is free of animal derived products
and most importantly,

Have a lovely weekend my patient followers - my exams will be over in exactly 2 weeks.

11 September 2010

Guess What I Did Today!

That's right, Matt, Mum and I packed up and walked over to the zoo for the day! And just our luck, it was actually sunny most of the time -yay!

My Mum is here visiting for the weekend, so yesterday I took her to the National Gallery of Victoria for the European Masters exhibition, and then dumplings in China Town for lunch, and a spot of shopping. So today we decided it might be fun to head off to the Melbourne Zoo and meet the baby elephant.

This is what I wore for the big adventure, Headscarf: Sportgirl, Grey top (long sleeve): Cotton On, Cardigan: Cotton On, Floral Shirt: Sportsgirl,  Jeans: Jay Jays

Cute little Meerkats distracted by the skydivers above.


Ok, so it's almost my name

Me and my Mummy in the butterfly house

Baby elephant, Mali

Soooooo close!

Mum and Matt

This picture was taken purely for Lisa's benefit. Of course between her and Matt as influences, it's hard for me to not see the dirty word in everything. lol.


Giraffe AND Zebra - at the same time!! Awesome.

Snuggling, snoozing almost extinct wombats. Naw.

I'm so glad we had an outing today. It happens so rarely for me and Matt, and we had such a good time. The Zoo is soooooo big! We didn't get to see everything (missed the gorillas and monkeys and baboons =( ) but I had a ball.

Only thing I found hard was trying to find a meal that was dairy-free and not deep fried, but managed to get around that with a chicken and Japanese mushroom broth - om nom.

It's so good to see my Mum again, she's going home tomorrow, and then all the exam business and business really kicks in - so forgive my lack of blogging for the next few weeks guys.

Have a lovely rest of your weekend.


Ba-ha! Almost Forgot About This One

09 September 2010

I Walked Into the Room Dripping in Gold

Love, love, love, love, LOVE this song.

08 September 2010

Ya Tag-Dag

Gosh, I love calling people that as I politely tuck their tag back into their shirt.

The lovely Wrenrennard of blog, The Raven has tagged me in a post to answer her questions;

1. If you won $65,000,000 - what is the first thing you would do?
Scream a lot then hug the closest person to me. Then, I'd probably buy them a drink of some description.

2. Where in the world do you want to visit most?

Germany. It seems so artistic and much more progressive than other parts of the world as far as being holistic is concerned. Samuel Hahnemann (the father of homeopathy) is from there and it would be interesting to see a place where a holistic view is so important, even though the society is still Westernised. 
Also, I learnt German for yonks and have a friend who lives there.

3. If you were an animal, what animal would you be and why?

Oh, I would totally be a kitten. They are just so curious about everything, and that cute expression on their face when they aren't sure about something - adorable. Plus, they get pampered, are always pretty and get to go on regular adventures.

4. The city, the country or the beach?

Well, now that I have moved to Melbourne, I am very much missing home - Albury. Even though it is in the country, it's still a city. It's the perfect balance - the only thing missing is a beach!

5. Your favourite genre of music?

Umm.... that's a toughy because I don't really have a particular style I listen to, per-say. I suppose I like music written and sung by girls: Bertie Blackman, Clare Bowditch, Florence and the Machine, Missy Higgins, etc. I also like stuff that's fun to dance to.

6. Your dream job?

To be a Naturopathic Nutritionist, who educates regular people about the best way to eat for the optimum results from their body. To have a clinic where the fees are reasonable, and there are student and pensioner discounts, and once a fortnight, a cooking class to teach people how easy and fun it is to get to know different foods and cook delicious and healthy meals for themselves and their families/friends.

7. Your favourite book?

I really enjoy the Harry Potter series to be honest. I don't read much, unfortunately, but I do have fond memories of reading as a kid (especially 'The Fantastic Mr. Fox').

8. Your favourite clothing item at the moment?

Ooh, this is a toughy. Maybe my brand new blue suede clogs. Since they are the newest, or the mustard yellow cardi that Lisa gave me. It's very pretty, simple, and very me.

Now, the 8 people that I tag to answer my 8 questions are:
Blackswan from Your Only Blackswan
JSotiriou from Stuck In A Dumb Daze
Bug from In Bug's Drawers
Shelby from Felix Wears Frames
Orchid Style from Orchid Style
Gatsby and Me from Gatsby and Me
Luxbriony from Luxbriony Blog
Ballarat Vintage Style from Ballarat Vintage Style

My 8 questions for you my dears, are:
1. Are you a shoe, hat, bag or 'other' person?
2. What is your favourite meal/food memory?
3. What is the best holiday destination?
4. What is your favourite thing to do outside of work/school?
5. What is something you would like to do before you die?
6. What does your no-fail outfit look like?
7. What is the one TV show you can't live without?
8. If you were a pie, what flavour would you be?

Thanks for tagging me Raven, it was lots of fun! I hope you find my answers interesting.

I look forward to seeing your answers, the rest of you.

Now I Lay Me Down To Sleep

"Now I lay me down to sleep,
A bag of peanuts at my feet,
If I die before I wake,
Give them to my brother Jake."
I just love that I grew up on M*A*S*H. =)

I am desperate for some good bed linen. A doona cover and some sheets and pillow cases that do not fall under any of these categories:
  • stark white
  • brown
  • pale/pastel
  • too floral (I share with the boyfriend, after all)
  • stripy
  • spotty
  • boring
  • child-like
  • "modern"
  • make the bedroom look stale
I would really like bed linen that
  • is interesting - can start up a conversation
  • has some detail
  • has some colour
  • is boy friendly without being dull
  • makes the bedroom look welcome and cheerful
  • is different
Please help me guys, I'm sick of the way my bedroom looks. And if you possibly have any tips as far as bedroom decor is concerned, I'd love to hear them, including where I can find stuff for my bedroom or what I can do to liven up the room.

I can't even find pictures of what I mean, but I have an idea in my head. 
I'm just sick of my room being so bland and boring. I never want to be in there.

Any ideas will be gratefully received.
Thanks for listening.

06 September 2010

Renegade Grocery Shopper

Recently I visited the student clinic at my Uni and saw (at the same time) a nutritionist and a naturopath. I've been putting it off for quite a while and I'm so glad that I finally did it. Both of them were a bit shy and a bit scared to push me, so I think it was their first clinic. I'm hoping that at my next session they'll be a bit more enthusiastic, I find that it helps me to be motivated. Ah well.

Anyway, point is, they gave me two pages of things that they recommended for me, and they were very shocked when I said I would do ALL of them. So, now I'm on a couple of supplements and no dairy for two weeks. I was also given this lovely recipe for muesli, which is good for protein and fibre intake, as well as helping my liver detoxify my body. Here it is for you to try:

Fibre, Protein & Liver Detox Muesli

3 cups steel cuts oats
1 cup mixed, roughly chopped nuts (almonds, walnuts, brazil nuts, hazelnuts)
1/4 cup sunflower seeds
3/4 cup unbleached lecithin
1 tsp cinnamon
2 tbl goji berries

I eat about a cup of this with chopped banana and soy milk. It's delicious! Just make sure you store it in the fridge (especially in summer) as well as any left over lecithin.

I get so inspired by my course; I hear so many things about foods, the benefits and disadvantages of different foods, the different processes for foods and the sort of nutrients our bodies need more of. 

Most of the foods that I buy are organic and I've become a 'label-nazi' as far as preservatives, additives, genetically modified foods, etc. I've even successfully gone 4 whole days without chocolate, milk, cheese, cream, yoghurt and butter! (SO difficult)

I really hope that all this helps me, especially my skin and my stress levels. I can't wait!

Also - along my holistic travels - I found this internet channel, called The Renegade Health Show. The hosts talk a little too much about things I don't care about, but the recipes are really interesting, like the one for non-dairy chocolate milk, or the raw baba ganoush, and I do believe in the idea behind what they are doing.

If you have any tips or recipes for my dairy-free quest, I would love to hear them!