Matcha is a specially grown, processed and often ceremoniously consumed green tea. Once upon a time it was saved for only royalty, or samurai warriors, but is now consumed world wide and enjoyed in many forms. Today there are two forms of matcha, ceremonial matcha, used in tea ceremonies and for meditation and culinary matcha.
Most people are aware of the benefits of green tea, it was all the rage here a number of years ago. And while there are a lot of benefits of green tea, matcha is essentially green tea on steroids. First this is because matcha is not steeped leaves in water, it is stone ground leaves whisked in hot water, which means more of the nutrients are retained and consumed.
Furthermore, the type of green tea that makes matcha contains a higher amount of antioxidants, which are what protects your body and helps flush out toxins you are exposed to in everyday life. Specifically it contains catechins, which are considered the most potent antioxidants. Nearly 60% of the catechins found in matcha is epigallocatechin gallate or EGCg and this compound is most widely known for its cancer fighting properties. Matcha tea can contain over 100 X more EGCg than any other tea.
For thousands of tears, Matcha has been used by monks as a means to relax and prepare for meditation, while also staying alert. Matcha is a caffeinated beverage, but it does not give you the jitters or have the same affect as other caffeinated beverages. Scientists have found this is due to the amino acid L-Theanine contained in the leaves used in matcha. This amino acid does a number of things. First, it promotes the production of alpha waves which induces relaxation, but not drowsiness. They also increase seretonin and dopamine production, which make you feel good, balance mood, improve memory, and boost concentration; all without the crash or nervousness!
It burns calories but increasing metabolism and improves cholesterol. As well as boosts the immune system. Matcha leaves have significant levels of vitamins and minerals, such as potassium, iron, protein, calcium and vitamin A&C.
I feel this tea is something you become accustomed to. Experiment with the amount you use to have thinner or thicker teas and also with sweeteners. A little drop of honey goes a long way in making it more palatable. Or try some culinary matcha for baking and lattes, which is one of my favourite ways of consuming matcha. Although I really do enjoy whisking mine. Theres just something about mindfully preparing a cup of tea, sitting in silence to consume it, and knowing your body is loving it as much as you. It really is a meditative practice, and something I think everyone should give a try once in their life. To be part of a traditional Japanese ceremony someday is definitely on the bucket list!
The brand I purchased is no longer available on Amazon (their website does not ship to Canada as far as I could tell.) However! I have used this other brand’s products and have enjoyed them!
1 1/2 C of unsweetened coconut milk
1 tsp of Jade Leaf Matcha
1 tsp honey
1 tbsp of hot, but not boiling water
~Mix the tbsp of water (or more if you need to) with the matcha and if you have a matcha whisk, use that, otherwise a spoon is fine. Melt your honey in the matcha.
~Steam your milk and mix with your matcha.
using a matcha whisk, and tea bowl;
Sift 1-2 tsp matcha into a cup using a small sifter.
Add 2oz hot water. For best results use water just under a boil.
Whisk vigorously in a zig zag motion until the tea is frothy.
Enjoy your matcha tea straight from the bowl.
(sourced from: here)
As always, wishing you happiness and wellness,
***this post is not sponsored, it is entirely my opinion about the products linked***
for the first time, I actually got orchids to bloom again.
each time I’d either figure I killed them, did, in fact kill them, or they just never bloomed again so I threw them out.. and kept buying them, because I loved them. i would enjoy them, feel sad as they died, and dispose. . .
this time I was persistent.
it took a little research
a little (a lot) of patience
and some Love
and she’s blooming more than she did last year. I’ve counted nearly 20, and there might even be more.
I can’t help but feel, maybe she’s mirroring all that’s to come to fruition in my life in the coming months.
so i think I’ll use the same technique, a little bit of research, some patience and a lot of love, in order to weather what’s to come.
Shortly after announcing my pregnancy I had a lot of people ask me,
“are you scared?”
“are you nervous?”
“What about what happened last time.” (preterm delivery, Postpartum depression)
At first I wasn’t really sure how to answer. Depending on whether I wanted to explain myself or not really summed it up, because the answer is,
I struggled with the fear of having one more for quite some time. And it haunted me, because I felt this pull, this knowing, that there was one more waiting for us. People often chime, “you just know when you’re done.” And after Asher, I immediately knew I wasn’t. However, right when I saw the double line and after the initial shock of discovering I was pregnant again, I felt relief. We were done, this was it. I finally felt it.
But then the fear crept in again. Was I pressing in my luck? I had two healthy children, and I feel so fortunate that they are. But what if this one is ill? Or has other complications? I felt anxiety creeping in, which is not something I typically experience. I wrestled with it day and night, trying to rationalize my way out of an irrational thought that; because I had been lucky twice, I was going to be unlucky this time.
I think that this is a common experience in life, even outside of pregnancy. Everyone has their ultimate fear that plays out in future situations, or makes you feel guilty about past encounters. Its simply a part of the human mind, and the human experience. But that doesn’t mean it cannot be changed, understood, or fixed. There is a way out of the dysfunction, one that dampens the voice of fear in your mind so that you can see what is truly there. And after a short time of trying to use my rational mind to silence an irrational part of the psyche, I turned to my little tool box of serenity and surrendered.
There was nothing in my outside world that was telling me my child would be ill, or that something was going to occur. It was a completely made up concept in my mind that was causing me unrest. I was going to take this fear head on, because I could recognize the harm it was causing me.
The tools I use to bust through fear are simple.
I call out whatever fear it is that I am experiencing. And if I can analyze it for a little longer, I might see what actually is really driving this fear. For me, the fear of having something happen to my child is, I’m not good enough, deserving enough, to have been blessed three times. (I know thats kind of awful isn’t it?) My Highest Self knows this to be false, but the mind, or the Ego, does a pretty good job in making it believable.
So I call out my fear. I say, “This fear is not real. I choose to see this from a more loving perspective.”
And I immediately sit in meditation.
Releasing Fear Meditation
Come to a comfortable seat and close your eyes.
Take a few deep breaths to centre yourself and clear your mind.
Run a body check and see if you can feel tension or can sense the fear residing in a part of your body, and take note. If you don’t thats okay.
Inhale- “I know this fear based thought is not real.”
Exhale- “I invite serenity in.”
Inhale- “I am willing to see this differently”
Exhale- “I am releasing this fear, now.”
Inhale- “I choose Love over Fear.”
Exhale- “I choose Love over Fear.”
and so it is.
You can repeat this section of the meditation as many times as you wish, or until you feel relief. After, simply sit, repeating the mantra, “I choose Love over Fear.” on each inhale and exhale.
When you’re ready, open your eyes and take in the room.
This meditation can be used anytime, anywhere. When I first started using meditation as a way out of fear and anxiety I found instant relief. Some things left easily. Others, well they kind of held on. I did this meditation for my particular fear over Baby Sprinkles (Mila named them, lol) many, many times, before the fear simply no longer mattered. At any moment I felt a negative thought regarding Sprinkles I simply inhaled, recited my mantra, and exhaled.
I hope this mantra meditation assists you and you find the serenity that resides within. Practice it anytime.
Wishing you wellness and happiness, always.
wearing kundalini gown.
This was really what started my interest in elixirs, Reishi mushrooms. I had heard of Reishi mushrooms as a child and knew of their revered use in Traditional Chinese Medicine for thousands of years. Also, upon becoming pregnant I heard of Reishi Babies, or babies who’s mothers consumed Reishi during pregnancy. In Asia, many mothers seek the herb as an immune builder for them and the baby. Something Master Teeguarden said, (a widely recognized Master Herbalist in America) who dubbed the term “reishi babies” really spoke to me.
I saw some of these children, older and newborn, and they appeared uniformly calm and focused. The infants had little or no inflammation on their face or hands, cried little, and appeared to take in their surroundings with incredible acuity.
And after having a colicky kid, I thought what the hell! Reishi has been used for thousands of years in pregnancy with no documented ill side effects, and I feel, personally, the limited use will be of benefit and of no harm. However, as always, speak with a doctor or your naturopath before consuming any adaptogens or supplements.
The Reishi mushroom is known as the “mushroom of immortality” as it supports radiant health, longevity, and works synergistically with the body, mind and spirit. This ancient fungus is an adaptogen; meaning it promotes homeostasis in the case of stress response, mostly by recharging and supporting your adrenals (which are responsible for releasing the stress hormone cortisol and adrenaline and other hormones.)
If under chronic stress your adrenals are then put under a lot of pressure and begin to function improperly. This overload of stress hormones can lead to a variety of illnesses and conditions, ranging everywhere from skin conditions, to chronic fatigue, inflammation, digestive disorders anxiety and depression, cancer, sleep, weight and memory problems as well as heart problems.
Wow. Thats kind of scary. I can also say, from experience, adrenal fatigue is no joke, and after addressing it with herbs I felt AMAZING. Having properly functioning adrenals was legitimately life changing.
Along with supporting adrenals, Reishi also has a laundry list of other health benefits, and protect against other illnesses and dysfunctions including;
Fatigue (including chronic fatigue syndrome)
Frequent infections (urinary tract, bronchitis, respiratory infections, etc.)
Food allergies and asthma
Digestive problems, stomach ulcers and leaky gut syndrome
Tumor growth and cancer
Viruses, including the flu, HIV/AIDS or hepatitis
Heart disease, hypertension, high blood pressure and high cholesterol
sleep disorders and insomnia
Anxiety and depression
Reishi is not the only mushroom with benefits. Another mushroom is Chaga, or the “King of Plants.” Chaga has immense immune enhancing properties, antiviral abilities, and high levels of antioxidants.
Chaga can help with:
Purifies the Blood
Lower high blood sugar
Lowers stress response
Combat abnormal and mutagenic cell growth
Repair DNA damage
Enhances hair, skin, restores more youthful appearance
He Shou Wu is another one on the list. This root has been used to restore youth, vitality, longevity, and is considered a rejuvenation food.
Calms nervous system
Rich in Iron/Zinc
Strengthen red blood cell membranes
Improve brain function
Enhance immune system
And last but not least is Cordyceps, which is also a fungus and is often used as a rejuvenation tonic. It is beneficial to those recovering from illness, chronic stress, and fatigue. It was a toss up between Reishi and Cordyceps when I made my first purchase, as the main reason I was experimenting with elixirs was because of my fatigue. Unfortunately, I had to quit my adrenal support supplements upon becoming pregnant, and coupled with growing a human being, I was very, rejuvenation tonic that is often used by those who are recovering from illness, extended periods of stress, and general feelings of fatigue. very tired.
Cordyceps can help treat:
Respiratory infections like chronic bronchitis
Coughs, colds and the flu
Reproductive problems and sexual dysfunction
Bladder infections and urination problems
Low circulation and irregular heartbeats
Heart disease and high cholesterol
Chronic fatigue syndrome and low energy
All of the information collected, and photos used, was from the website Root&Bones, and that is also where I purchase everything. They are a reputable company, with organic and wildcrafted fungus. I have been very pleased with my purchase and can’t wait to make more!
Just a disclaimer, this is not sponsored, just totally my opinion. Although, that would be cool if it was!
Hope you enjoyed, and if you make a purchase I hope you love it as much as I have.
I may have found my favourite.
You probably have read that Chocolate is good for you. Every few months I see another study on why its okay to break out a bar every once in awhile. And the studies are right…kind of. The main component of chocolate, cocoa is okay for you. It’s flavanoids have some antioxidants, and might help lower cholesterol. But what researchers are typically studying is the purest form of cocoa, which closely resembles CACAO, or the raw form of COcoa.
The difference between cacao and cocoa is more than just spelling. Cacao refers to any food product originating from the cacao beans; cacao butter, nibs, paste, and of course, cacao powder.
Anything COcoa is a processed (roasted) version of CAcao, which is the raw, cold pressed, fermented fruit of the Cacao plant. (Still with me?) And it is actually CAcao that has the most health benefits.
So why would raw be better?
Well, whenever you roast anything at a high temperature you begin to change the chemical compound of the substance. Sometimes this can create carcinogenic substances, such as in the case of heating olive oil to high temps. Or you lose some of the key vitamins and minerals. And while they aren’t completely sure, there have been studies showing the raw version, CAcao, has higher antioxidant compounds than the roasted version, COcoa.
Health Benefits of CACAO
Cacao has nearly four times the antioxidant content of regular processed dark chocolate and 20X more than blueberries. These antioxidants flush out and protect against free radicals in the body.
Cacao contains anandamide, or the “bliss molecule” which can create a euphoric feeling and improve your mood. (I mean, OBVS.)
Cacao is an aphrodisiac- it contains PEA or phenethylamine which triggers the release of endorphins that naturally release during sexual activity. These chemicals also improve libido. Perhaps why its tradition to give chocolate on Valentine’s Day? hmm…
Cacao boosts serotonin, the feel good molecule, which is why women typically turn to chocolate during PMS as serotonin levels fall at this time.
Cacao thins the blood, prevents premature aging and has even been linked to shedding fat due to its MAO inhibitors which help shrink appetite!
The component theobromine (cacao butter) has been shown to halt coughs better than codeine without the scary side effects.
The flavanols help improve microcirculation, oxygen saturation and skin hydration, all which improve the skin and its texture.
Resets metabolism, reduce insulin resistance and lowers blood pressure naturally.
The sulfur content improves the hair, nails, and supports liver and pancreatic function.
So how do you include Cacao in your diet?
Basically you can replace anything that calls for cocoa with cacao. In baking or cooking. You can also sub chocolate chips for cacao nibs, which are cut up pieces of the fermented fruit. The fermentation process they naturally go through causes them to take on a rich coffee and berry notes we have associated with chocolate for so long, (warning they are naturally bitter- do not expect to be eating chocolate chips. These have not been sweetened!)
So throw them on your oatmeal, add it to baking, or throw them in a smoothie.
My favourite way has been adding a tablespoon to my morning latte along with maca.
What exactly is maca? Maca is an ancient Peruvian crop belonging to the radish family and has been consumed for thousands of years. Recently it has been used as an incredible superfood!
It is naturally high in vitamins, minerals, amino acids, and antioxidants. It is also linked to helping fertility as it balances hormones, in both females and males and many people take it to increase libido. Along with balancing hormones it also evens out mood, so its beneficial for people suffering from anxiety or depression, or mood swings.
And one of the biggest reasons I add this to my morning brew is for its ability to increase alertness and endurance, because I. Am. Exhausted.
Growing a baby is no joke, and with two others to care for during the day I am absolutely beat. For 16 weeks I have crawled to the kitchen with my lips to make the kids breakfast and then have had to have a lie down. And the exhaustion was just not letting up, even with daily 2 hour naps and doing the bare minimum. In fact, I needed the bloody nap just to make it to bedtime. Two weeks ago I was feeling rather defeated because all I have done for 16 weeks to that point was exist, and I decided to give it a go.
Like all of these super foods , I start small and rotate which ones I use, but in this past week I’ve noticed a huge pick up in energy. In fact, I’ve only had one nap this week and it was because I was up at 5 and then was out cooking in the sun until after lunch. And aside from a growing belly, I’m feeling pretty good (finally) at 18 weeks. So while of course it could just be my body finally getting its life together, or the maca, I’ll take it.
(I was unable to find much information in regards to Maca and pregnancy (lets be honest, sort of like everything) but it is consumed in high amounts in Peru, for thousands of years, with no ill side effects. So I feel a tsp every few days is completely okay. Like always, start small, rotate, and ask your doctor.)
Like CAcao, it can be used in smoothies, morning lattes, soup or in pretty much anything, or taken as a supplement. I didn’t find it altered the taste at all.
So here is my
Morning Maca Mocha Latte
1 tbsp cacao
1 tsp maca powder
2 tsp coconut sugar
1 shot of espresso (1/2 cup of regular coffee)
1 1/2 C coconut milk, steamed (or boil on the stove)
I add the coffee to the cacao, maca, and coconut sugar and mix well to dissolve the powders. Then steam my milk and add it to the brew. It tastes like hot chocolate, and makes me feel good both inside and out.
I got all my super foods from Amazon by the way. (I was only able to find maca in caplet form local to me)
Hope you enjoyed this rather long post. Happy brewing!
im sitting on my deck, sipping tea, listening to the birds sing and the children make a soup of some kind in the sandbox and reflecting on yesterday.
yesterday was overwhelmingly hard. I was certain my kids were trying to end me. I didn’t bend, I broke. I gave up and crawled into my bed and cried and waited for the day to end.
and when I walked through the yard last night after the children went to bed and saw that nearly all the blossoms were on the ground I reminded myself gently, the meaning of the Cherry Blossom; that, life is overwhelmingly beautiful, but it’s also overwhelmingly short.
The hardships too. They’re moments in time and then they pass. And the feeling that hardships last longer than happiness is simply our perspective of it. And your perspective is a choice you make.
I woke up this morning and set the intention of having ‘the best day ever.’ I’m hoping your day is too.
One of the simplest ways I stay healthy is my one and only snacking rule;
Replace all snacks with fruits, vegetables, or nuts.
That’s right, Chips, granola bars (even the “healthy” looking ones) and “snacky” like foods are treats, not snacks. These are a once a week food, not a one or twice a day food.
An easy way to stick to this rule is by prepping simple healthy snacks ahead of time. Which is essentially, pre washing your fruit, cutting your produce, and pre-making dips like hummus and guacamole. Then all you have to do is open the fridge and voila- there it is.
It’s also helpful with kids, because I have the same rule for my children. If they want a snack, they can have a fruit, a vegetable, or some nuts. I refuse to give them snacks all damn day too- why? Because then they actually eat their meals and not live off of crackers and granola bars.
They also ask for less snacks because I’m not always shoving them tasty bags of sugar and crunchies their way. They genuinely come to me when they’re hungry, and ask for nuts and dates, or some berries. Which is awesome. Because it also means they’re actually hungry at dinner. And when you’re hungry, you’re more likely to try new things, and everything tastes good. So hooray for less battles at the dinner table.
Some of my favourite preps are,
•Vegan yogurt topped with hemp hearts and berries
•Almonds, cashews, dates trail mix, with peanut butter topped rice cakes
•Hummus and veggies (like carrots, cucumber, celery and peppers)
I just made a delicious hummus recipe for today, sans tahini as I was out. I don’t like to buy hummus because of all the preservatives..and it’s honestly so easy to make, why wouldn’t you?
•1 can of chickpeas
•squeeze of fresh lemon juice
•2 garlic cloves
•dash of salt
•1tsp of cumin
•2 TBSP of water if needed
•Blend until smooth. Taste and adjust seasonings if you need to.
•top with smoked paprika
What are your favourite snacks to make and most of all EAT?
lately, I’ve been in a “low vibe state.” And what I mean by that is, we are all beings made of light and energy, and therefore vibrate at certain frequencies. Everything does. And you can change your vibration according to how you live, and your thoughts. The higher the vibration, the better, the more attuned you are.
You can get an idea of your vibration by asking, “how do I feel?”
Do you feel light, energetic, and assured? Or do you feel scattered, maybe depressed, or feel lost?
and lately, I’ve been feeling not myself. Lethargic. Irritable. A bit apathetic. And my inner world is matching my outer world. I keep accidentally hurting myself and dropping things and those around me are kind of feeling and doing the same. And it’s a total bummer! But your vibe attracts your tribe…
So, how do you fix it?
Well for me, I fully believe that in order to change you have to be in a spiritually aligned place. Meaning, Center yourself, connect back in with Spirit, release what’s blocking you, and begin again. My favourite way to do this is with mantra meditation using a Mala.
Be seated in easy pose, hold your Mala in thumb and first finger on bead number one. Then recite your mantra, and move to the next bead. It’s the Buddhist form of a rosary basically.
My favourite mantras are,
•sat nam (truth identified)
•so ham (I am (one with the universe)) and of course
•Ohm (which was said to be the first sound at the beginning of the universe and unblocks the throat chakra.)
You can say these in your head, or aloud. Or you can make your own depending on what you need.
•I am enough.
•I am beautiful.
•I am strong.
•I am a being of love and light.
It’s your practice. Choose what works for you. And any amount of time is beneficial. Start with one minute and work your way up to 11. And if you really don’t want to do it, then you should do it twice. I promise you’ll feel better.
n e w•m o o n ♈️I had the honour of holding space for 11 other women a few days ago in a new moon ceremony. It was a beautiful reminder that, everyone has a story that could break your heart wide open, and another reminder of how much compassion I have sitting just inside my heart, that’s ready and waiting to be called upon. I couldn’t believe how open my heart was when we finished
And it’s inspired me to share this with you✨
tonight is the new moon in Aries
as always, new moons are a beautiful time to welcome new thoughts and new beginnings.
Perhaps you’ve read before, that 2017 is a “1” year, and 2016 was a “9” year; meaning 2016 was the year of letting go and the “death” of some concepts in your life, while 2017 is the year of new beginnings.
But if you’re like me, you may have found Jan-March to be a lot like last year
Don’t worry. You’re not crazy.
Jan-march was mostly a time to finish tying up the loose ends of 2016. But now, with the New Moon in Aries we welcome this new “1” year Energy, as it is the first sign in the astrological calendar and it’s fiery!
It’s heard you. It’s ready to create with you, support you and encourage you with your new idea-baby.
I encourage you to take some time tonight. Light a candle. Close your eyes. Sit quietly for a few moments. And envision exactly what you want your life or business to become. Make a safe space in your mind for your ideas to bloom. No judgement. The sky is the limit, its YOUR vision! And then tuck the sides of your vision up, and fold it back away into your minds eye. Then keep coming back to this safe space you’ve created. Nurture your idea-baby, as you would a child, and you might be surprised to see actions you can take that allows it to come into fruition.
From my heart to yours,
(Photo from google images. Pls message for credit)
s p r i n g • e o s t r e
the time when light and dark are balanced. it’s a time to look around yourself and identify where there is imbalance in your life; whether in health, attitude, job, or hobby.
spring is a time to put winter behind you, and celebrate the abundance in your life and all that is abundant around you. the patches of wildflowers, crocuses, and budding trees. birds laying eggs and other creatures waking up from a long nap.
It is a time to rid yourself of clutter, both physically and energetically. It’s a time to begin again, to engage in action, and begin working towards all you dreamed up during the winter.
So ask yourself,
What have you outgrown? What do you wish to see blossom?
Then put one foot in front of the other. One tiny action, after the other,
And like a pebble in a pond,
Make a wave~
and so it is,