Saturday, October 31, 2009

A Singing Halloween!

Hiya Witches, Gobblins and Goonies!

Hope you all had a wonderful Halloween!

Tonight i sang at a masquerade party in center city, 21st and Spruce Street, in a stunning huge brownstone at the wonderful party of my new friends, Valerie and Joe and their children Joe Jr. and Francesca. I'm sorry that i was so preoccupied with singing that i didn't even get any pictures of the family!

(You can see above the pictures we did get - some funny costumes including a giant black penis we ran into at the gas station on the way home! Hysterical!)

I am so very very pleased to report that I sang so extremely amazingly well! I am flying HIGH right now! I can honestly say that i have never ever sung better!!!!!

I am SO BLESSED that i am now studying with Dolores Cascarino. I needed a teacher to 'finish' me and that is just what is happening! Did i attract that into my life??? Oh, god, i'm so happy. I sang effortlessly, professionally, easily, from high to low and back, no stress, no strain. I'm so HAPPY! HAPPY! HAPPPPPPY!!! The techniques that she is teaching me, work!

Uy, uy, uy, but coming to good singing today was hard going. Vocalizing today was challenging. I'm still learning how to brige the gap between two different singing techniques. I fell back into bad habits, panicked quite a bit, sang poorly quite a bit before i sang well, but ultimately, recognized that i had fallen back to what DIDN'T work, and pulled myself out, getting onto the track of what DID work. It was a very powerful practice session. I was able to work through good! When i discovered what was working, i was like, 'wow, THIS is it!' Singing well feels like FLYING! Having had an ultimately successful warm up was the basis of my fantastic singing tonight.

So, performing tonight i was able to STAY on that track and not get off. That was absolutely THRILLING!!! I stunned myself i was so good.

So, all in all, warming up, I applied the new tools that Dolores gave me to what worked of my old technique....and discovered i am freakin' fabulous.

I decided NOT to 'throw the baby out with the bath water' and to safely use my old vocalises and ideas from my old singing "technique" that most certainly WORKED, mixed TOGETHER with the new technique while warming up. In not throwing out what worked of the old technique....but adding ON TOP OF THAT the new....i really feel like i have come upon my 'finished' voice.


Last week I sang and was just okay. I had forgotten to do what i know that works. All of a sudden i had a high larynx and shallow breathing and strain after singing. All of a sudden, i was like, 'how do i breath? how do i sing high?' Like all of a sudden i didn't know how to do anything anymore.

So i learned to TRUST myself tonight. I KNOW what works. And i KNOW what doesn't. Some of it i just had to trust that i already KNEW, and some of it i've JUST learned...applied...and mastered...all in one amazing night. I feel so empowered. I feel skilled. I feel so good.

Tonight, i combined the basis of my OLD TECHNIQUE joined TOGETHER with the new technique...and oila' was an unequivocal success!!!!!!

Hard to explain, but i hope you can understand.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

I ate lighter and less food this week and it helped me to zip my dress and feel comfortable! Just a week ago, i was busting out of the dress! That is the power of raw! Quick weight loss!! And weight management!!!

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

And the other side of raw is PLEASURE! Since i abstained from salt and abundant nuts this week, i treated myself to a celebratory meal after singing that was sooooooo good, so yummo, so decadent, the decadent side of raw! It was in no way a binge, but a fantastical MEAL.

I had raw toona salad I made up for myself days ago, but never ate, served on curry flax crackers with marinated roma tomato, and a vanilla banana pudding with chocolate cream swirled through it. Pure raw joy! After such a big success tonight, i deserved it!!!

I'll talk more in the future about what i keep in my fridge and cabinets to make a quick fantastical seconds! Master sauces, crackers and pates.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

With raw, we can CHOOSE if we want to indulge or go lean. It is such a wonderful way of life. I have the CONTROL!

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

I don't think it's a coincidence that I discovered the right singing teacher for me just as I was ready for it. And i don't think it's any coincidence that I discovered the "breakaway program" online when i was ready to give up emotional eating.

I feel things are just about to push through. It feels like this is going to be a time of intense growth.

As my eating habits improve, my singing habits improve, i'm readying myself for gigantic success.

I've always known i had the potential to be a great singer, because i KNEW what great singing was and wanted to be a great singer, and because i WANTED it, it's now coming to fruition. After SO much hard work, so much struggle, so much pain, i'm finally finding my way to singing i can COUNT ON! How GOOD does THAT feel????? I can't TELL you how gratifying that is.

I've been afraid to pursue singing professionally, but i don't feel afraid tonight. I really think i'm good enough now.

There were no agents at the party tonight, but I know if i want one to hear me and hire me, all i have to do is DESIRE it...and one will find me!

I could make my dreams come true....just by dreaming them into reality!

And so can you!!!

What's your dream???

I sang this song tonight...."Climb Ev'ry Mountain," so i'll share it with you - It's about perseverance, it's about never giving up until you reach the top of the mountain, it's about finding your way and not letting anything get in your way.

I lived my dream tonight - My dream was always to sing like Flagstad, like Eileen Farrell, like Regine Crespin. This is only the BEGINNING of something really really miraculous.

What's your dream????

Climb ev'ry mountain
Search high and low
Follow ev'ry byway
Ev'ry path you know

Climb Ev'ry Mountain
Ford Ev'ry Stream
Follow Ev'ry rainbow
Till you find your dream

A dream that will need
All the love you can give
Ev'ry day of your life
For as long as you live!

Climb ev'ry mountain
Ford ev'ry stream
follow ev'ry rainbow!

xoxo michelle joy

Choco-Green for Happy Halloween!

Hiya Hallo-weenies,

This morning Cliffy wanted a chocolate shake, but i wanted greens in it, and he still has a little cold so i convinced him he NEEDED greens.

So we compromised and made a green smoothie with an entire big head of romaine in it that was....dark brown and tasted ONLY of chocolate...ooooh, it was DEELISH!

- 6 bananas
- 1 head romaine
- 1 Tbsp good vanilla extract
- agave, lots
(cacao is very bitter, so this tones it down -
i did about 5 circular drizzles from a big bottle of agave)

- cacao powder, several Tbsps
(enough to turn your shake medium to dark brown)
- 1 tray icecubes
- 2-3 cups water

Blend, blend, blend!!!...
This shake fills entire vitamix.
Taste and adjust cacao or agave!
Share with your honey, 2 big goblets each! Say, "Booo!" at each other..."Fooled ya!
It LOOKS chocolate, but it's a GREEN SMOOTHIE!

I'm really super nervous this morning. I sing for the Halloween party tonight. I have 7 songs I feel very comfortable singing and will bring a few others in case i need more. 6-8 songs were requested. 1-2 every hour of a 4-hour masquerade party.

I will be sure to take pictures!!!!!

My weight is good, 257.
God, this raw thing really works. Can you imagine almost 3 years ago i weighed 425 and now i'm for all intents and purposes a normal functioning person? I still have 100 lbs to lose, but feel confident that as soon as my emotional eating issues are cleared up, i will be sailing on my way into 240 land...and then into 'onederland' and all the way down!

I'm very nervous because my voice doesn't feel good at all this morning, but i have alllllll day to settle in and relax and can vocalize and warm up plenty, and really ease into a good vocal place. We don't need to be at the party until 7p.m.

So, i'm dressing in my white gown with red ribbons and i'll wear my pretty sparkly red shawl and my pretty red masquerade mask with feathers and gold beads and my pretty pearl necklace. Cliffy and i are going shopping this morning and I'm going to look for a pretty wig, maybe some kind of a headpeice decoration.

Cliffy is dressing as a Hell's Angel. We're going to look for a long black wig. It's a little late to shop for costume additions for the costumes we already have, but hopefully, we'll get lucky!

I did great with my food again at work! The power of having to fit into a gown is amazing. What a motivation. It really kept me on track incredibly. I had two really terrific days at work with almost zero compulsive snacking, yay!

I hope you are all well and will have a fun halloween!

I miss hearing from you all! Send me more comments, emails and send me pics of you in costume and i'll show them on the blog! Let me know how you celebrated your halloween raw-style!

xoxo michelle joy

Friday, October 30, 2009

EYES are the DOORS to the soul!

Morning, Ladies,

I had such a nice day at work yesterday. Very calm! I loved it!

I did really well with my food, in terms of self-control.

I did, however, start off the day (at 3:30a.m.!!!) with a heavy meal - raw hot chocolate. It was really cozying and satisfying, but NOT the best way to start the day.

Why, you ask?

Well, it's best to keep the body in a cleansing mode until about noon. I can find out more why, but i know from experience, I feel the best when I do that, keep the body cleansing by eating light foods in the morning: fruits and greens.

Deviations from that every once in a while are fine, in my opinion. But too much clogging food prior to noon and we'll eventually start to feel it, which i did.

Plus, I think the day before i ALSO woke up and had raw hot chocolate and then salt-free low fat dehydrated eggplant, yum, all afternoon. Both dishes included moderate amounts of fat and no greens or fruit. Greens and fruit are the cleansing foods we should eat the most of most of the day, especially until noon.

So i did a no-no two days in a row by eating a fat based meal for breakfast (hot chocolate is cashew butter, cacao, agave, vanilla, water).

[HOWEVER, i DID eat when i was hungry, didn't overeat, and didn't even compulsively PICK yesterday. AWESOME.]

Nevertheless, my right eye has been twitching. Arnold, my boss of Arnolds Way Raw Vegetarian Cafe' and Education Center in Lansdale, PA, says anything to do with the eye.....has it's roots in a problem with.....the liver.

Hm. You know how in foot reflexology if a practictioner touches your big toe it corresponds to your head/brain? (i just looked that up on google to confirm!)? Well, Arnold, similarly, reads people's faces. There is this wonderful little book that he follows by Michio Kushi called, "Your Face Doesn't Lie."

Arnold can look at your face and see what part of your body is out of whack. He looks at your skin, your cheeks, your chin, your forehead. He automatically knows what is ailing you.

So, previously, when this has happened, i've asked him. "Liver," he responded. My eye twitching means that my liver is overloaded....with too much fat.

That WOULD correspond to what my diet had been previously for 2 days. Though it was low in volume and controlled and non-compulsive (yay), i didn't feed it green smoothies for breakfast first thing in the morning and most of my meals were moderately fatty. I did have green smoothie later in the day, but the damage was already done.

Today i plan on following more closely my body's needs and feeding it more greens and fruit. I've already had a nice big green smoothie for breakfast.

CURIOUSLY, my hour later...has stopped twitching.


Cliff eats regular cooked food. He loves to drink milk, so i started buying him organic milk and even occassionally raw milk when i could get it. Well, he guzzles the stuff. 3 or 4 gallons were in the fridge on one day, and just a few days later, they were all gone.

Suddenly, he developed a little hanging growth on his right eye. It was really freaking us both out. I spoke with Arnold and he said the same thing: "His liver is overburdened." I told Cliff. He said to stop buying the milk, he guzzles it if it's there. After one week of no milk, the little dingle was looking different. Cliff squoze it and puss came out and it fell off. Totally gross, but we're both relieved it's gone. No more milk for Cliffy. I buy him almond or rice milk. Or when i make nutmylks, he enjoys that. But, we should save them for LATER in the day and not for first thing.

My mother also has something wrong with her eyes. They keep going bloodshot, one bled the other day and there is a small growth on the lower lid. I told her what Arnold told me. She's resistent, but listening.

The doctor took a small biopsy of the growth and she will know in a week if it's cancerous. Cross your fingers for my mother. But, it's got to be that liver again.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

We can't fool mother nature. Our bodies are trying to talk to us all of the time. We have to learn to listen and read it's signals.

Here are a few quick things i found on the internet regarding facial diagnosis:

Diagnose your own face...and let me know!!!

xoxo michelle joy

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Cleanliness is next to...PURE RAW JOY!

Good morning, ya'll!

I'm up bright and early this morning! Well, actually, sure is early, but i'm not sure i feel all that bright, since I've been up since 3:30a.m.! Maybe i rested as much as my body needed to?

I loved this picture of the sun! I don't know what that factory is doing in the back....!!! Please disregard!!!

Yesterday was the most amazing powerful lesson i have experienced in a while. What a person can accomplish in ONE day with HELP, MOTIVATION and POSITIVITY is simply extraordinary!

My dear, sweet friend, Megan, who is my coworker from Arnolds Way and who we have affectionately named "Megabytes" accepted a proposal from me to work at my house for 50 hours to help me 1) clean out the basement and the 2 "junk" rooms upstairs and 2) organize and beautify our home.

Our project will take about 6 weeks total to complete. A 6 week makeover!!!!

So meet Mr. and Mrs. Slobberson - that's me and Cliff! I've been living with Cliff for 10 years (in un-wedded bliss - we've been engaged for 2 of those years) and in the 10 years i've been here, my parents, who live 45 minutes away, have never set foot in our home. We adore my parents and see them weekly. Just not HERE.

I was raised in a stunning upper middle class home in the suburbs, 3/4 of an acre of land with a swimming pool in the backyard, cleaning ladies, yearly trips to summer camp, parties, the good life. My father had a very successful business, and we were as my parents say, "comfortable." I never lacked for anything. The house was designer decorated, spotless, and my mother cleaned my room. I had very little discipline or responsibility growing up when it came to cleaning. And cleaning never came naturally to me.

Both of my parents were neat-freaks. I was always a slob.

So much a slob that when i was in elementary school, my mother was called in by the teacher to clean out my school desk, as it was jam packed with papers....unfinished homework assignments...books. You name it!

And i used to get punished all of the time for having a messy room. But somehow i never remember cleaning it. My mother used to.

So, when i was in high school, my mother snuck into school with me after hours to clean out my locker, repeatedly, which had become smelly, jam packed with old lunches, paper, books, unfinished homework assignments. (I used to borrow money from friends to buy greasy fattening lunches at the cafeteria in favor of my mother's lean sandwhiches, which i snubbed and shoved in the locker). When things got so bad in the locker that i couldn't even open it for fear of stinking up the hallway, i called in the reinforcements. Dear old mom.

I have a long history of letting mounds GROW. And she has a long history of cleaning them.

But, now i'm a grownup and, um, well, mommy's not as young as she used to be and i didn't call for reinforcements and just let the mounds GROW AND GROW.

You know, it's not too unsimilar to my issues with food.

Things easily get OUT OF CONTROL with me. Be they food or weight or stuff.

Now, it would really be something if i had hooked up with a partner who was a neatfreak. Someone who could, shall we say, keep me in line, yell at me alot to clean, throw tantrums if i left a sock on the floor.

But, i didn't!

Cliffy and I kiss and hug and couldn't love each other more as we step over piles of laundry, blissfully looking into each others eyes. We don't NOTICE it.

You see, Cliff and I have similar histories in that he was always a slob, too, but he grew up in a home with a mother who was an even bigger neatfreak than my mother or father. His mom had him waxing furniture and dusting and doing continuous chores, as an 8 year old. When all of the other kids were out playing ball, Cliff had to clean and do chores. And he got yelled at for making fingerprints on the tables.

Needless to say, as an adult, he rebelled.

So did i.

To put it mildly, we BOTH hate to clean!

So, after 10 years of living together, stuff has gotten out of control. The one junk room we had grew to 2 within the last year and a half. And because the basement was a disaster, there was nowhere to store that junk elsewhere, so it kept growing and growing.

Plus, we live in a big house in Manayunk that's over 100 years old. Homes built here at that time have NO CLOSETS. Can you say 'sure set up for disaster'? I can! No storage, two slobs, one (cliff), a worse packrat than me...and it's a ticking time bomb.

Cliff and I love each other dearly, and our tolerance for a mess is obviously quite high. We're great in a mess, but when faced with possible guests coming over, it's panic-city. We've barely had any guests to our house, let alone my parents. I told my mother repeatedly that it was an old home, that there were several repairs that needed to be made, that some walls needed to be painted and that it was, basically, a mess, but that she and my father were more than welcome to come over anytime they wished. Her response was, "Daddy couldn't handle that." And, you know what? Daddy wouldn't be able to, so Daddy and Mommy never came. We always go over there. And the mess stayed a mess.

Until yesterday!!! (deep sigh)!!!!

Megabites and I and Cliff decided the basement was the first room we wanted to tackle on the 6 week makeover project - as when that was neat and orderly, it would give us plenty of room to store the junk we wanted to keep from the two junk rooms upstairs, converting those rooms back into useable and functional.

So, yesterday, Megan arrived at 11a.m....and didn't leave until 6p.m.!!! NON STOP she took charge and whipped that basement into shape with Cliffy and I assisting. 4 trips to the local recycling and trash center to throw away old bike tires, lamps, 2 toilette commodes that belonged to cliff's mom, and tons of random stuff, including at least 10 bags of trash outside and lots of elbow grease, and that basement actually LOOKS like a BIG, CLEAN, ORDERLY basement. I cannot quite believe it. I'd have taken pictures but i don't know where Cliffy put the camera. I think it's in the car.

Cliff's mom used to live with us. She is wheelchair bound and only moved into a nursing home a few short months ago. So, now that we have the house to ourselves, the time was ripe to go digging and dumping.

For 10 years i have looked at the mess, have always wanted to clean it. Cliff looked at it and always wanted to clean it. So why didn't we? I asked him why yesterday. He answered, "Because we didn't have Megan!"

Megan is our little angel, sent from heaven, and for the next 5 weeks, until mid-December, she is going to whip this house into shape.

I'm excited to perhaps cook Hannukah or Christmas dinner here...and actually invite my family over!!!

Raw Foodists who clean: As Megabytes and I cleaned, she snacked on grapes, dates and mangoes. That's how us raw folks do it! I had chocolate mylk for breakfast (cashew, agave, vanilla, cacao, water vitamixed) and dehydrated italian eggplant all afternoon (slices of eggplant brushed very lightly with olive oil on one side, no salt, nutritional yeast, basil, garlic, onion powder) dehydrated on 115degrees for 6-8 hours. YUMMMMOOOO. Of course they are even more bangin' with much more oil and salt and much more yeast, infact, DIPPED in yeast flakes, but i did the 'diet' version.

I'm doing well with my food. VERY well in fact. I've been salt free and low-fat raw since i discovered my dress for the masquerade was too tight and i'm happy to report, it fits much better. It's amazing how much water i can retain.

Well, chickies, I feel so happy about my basement. So hopeful for this house. And i owe my Megabytes a debt of gratitude for her willingness, her positivity, her vision, her initiative, hard work and dedication! God bless her!!!!

OH! We discovered a room in the basement that i didn't even know we had!!!! What an amazing find. More storage. More pure raw joy.

It just keeps getting better and better!

xoxox michelle joy

Wednesday, October 28, 2009


Hiya Ladies,
Well, TODAY is the start of something really exciting!

My dear sweet friend, Megan, there's her with the big Audrey Hepburn shades, has agreed to help me organize and straighten my house over the next weeks...and we're starting TODAY!

We've agreed on a project of 50 hours to be completed over the next month or two, and i am so JAZZED about this help, i can hardly contain myself!

Megan is a raw foodist and raw chef at Arnolds Way, who stars in the "Megan and Arnold Show" on Youtube. Check it out! Just search under 'Megan and Arnold Show.'

Wishing you a wonderful day! I know i'll be having one!
xoxox michelle joy

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Singin' in the rain!

Good morning, fine ladies,

It's raining again, hard, in Philadelphia. How's the weather by you? Raining dollar bills like it does in philly?

This afternoon I have my last retirement home concert of this season... It's been nice, i'll miss them, but Christmas will be here soon and i'll be singing then!

The retirement homes hire in January and make dates many many months out. Alex and i had 3 homes just this past week. Now that we are through, we'll send out our flyers again soon for next season in the hopes of being re-hired by the homes we have sung for already, and in the hopes of enticing new homes to hire us. We've gotten terrific feedback, quotes and recommendations, so things should get more on a roll next season, as they did this one, compared to the previous. The more the homes know other homes liked you, the more they hire you.

Today we perform our show "From Opera To Broadway" at the Abramson Center on Horsham Road. I'll make a little extra money, and make some nice old folks happy :-))

I've not been walking much, although i had a half hour walk yesterday with Cliff in the Valley Forge Park. We were bird and wildlife watching and saw a red headed woodpecker and blue birds and at least 20 deer, including several big bucks with full racks. It felt good to stretch my legs a bit, but i didn't feel that well yesterday. I think it was a bit of detox.

Yesterday I followed through on my plan for this week and I ate no salt 80-10-10 to help me in losing a few pounds this week so that my masquerade ball gown, which i'd like to wear for Halloween, fits me better. I could wear another gown that is too big, but want to wear my new white and red one, that's just a little snug. It's a good goal, it matches my new mask and i feel pretty in it! Did you see my pics from yesterday wearing a trashbag on my head? It will look much better with my beautiful feathery masquerade mask and a beautiful red shawl and some pearls!

Bringing in another $350 for the Halloween singing will be wonderful, not to mention getting paid to sing today! Dollar bills raining from the sky! My intention is to sing as much as i can! I know the universe hears that....and makes it happen!! I know i'm talented in raw food, but i think my greatest talent and pleasure lies in singing.

And singing is getting easier and easier with my new technique. I also know that changing teachers opened a door in the universe for me. I know my intention to improve will shift everything and more and more jobs will fall from the sky!

I weighed myself this morning and was pleased to see i weigh 258. That's very good for me! But, i'm concerned i'm losing muscle mass as i haven't been walking this week much. It's been raining quite a bit and i haven't gone to the gym. Perhaps i will pack a gym bag so that i can go to the gym after my concert today. That would certainly feel nice. A nice swim, a dip in the sauna or a water walk or a walk on the treadmill. Good idea.

I'll continue on in my '' as i have been, but can't this morning. Time to go warm up vocally for my show today!

Wish me luck!
xoxox michelle joy

Monday, October 26, 2009

Halloween Plan!


Cliff and I took some sweet wedding inspired photos in my new gown. I found this beautiful "David's Bridal" white gown with red ribbons at the Salvation Army for 13$ in my size! Was it a coincidence or fate that my shopping cart stopped wheeling, inexplicably, right in front of the gown? I asked the universe if there was something it was telling me to purchase. Lo and behold, a size 20 gown that fit me perfectly, well, a little snugly, was right in front of my eyes. In these pictures i have a supermarket grocery bag on my head and i'm holding plastic flowers :-))) But, I figured i could wear it as possible concert attire some day or as my own wedding gown, should Cliff and i take our 10 year relationship + 2 year engagement to the next level. For 13$ i couldn't pass it up.

Turns out i will be wearing this gown much sooner than i could have imagined! I was hired to sing at a Halloween Party this coming Saturday for $350, yay! I purchased a beautiful red masquerade mask and a lovely red shawl to complete my singing wardrobe! I'll be entertaining at a masquerade party in center city philadelphia, the rittenhouse square section. Very ritzy! I can't wait to show you my outfit when it is complete, no trashbag included. I sang for the family yesterday and all is a go!

The gown is actually a little snug on me, so I am going to cut way back on the salt, the fat, the dehydrated goodies, the nuts and have a "recovery" week like i used to have. I think i will feel more comfortable in the gown if it is not so snug. I plan to exercise daily, as well.

Wishing you a wonderful day!
xoxox michelle

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Life is!


Whew, that picture of me was frightening, but it made the point. From horrendous to fabulous with just the flick of a switch!!! How we think changes everything.

Mmmm...I just had a bowl of chocolate deliciousness for breakfasst this morning. Sometimes I wake up and just want something 'good.' Cacao, bananas, cashew butter, agave, vanilla, icecubes whipped up in the vitamix? Sounds like breakfast to me. Ahhh, that was so good. It's technically a smoothie, but i like to spoon it to my mouth from a bowl. Like melted Breyer's chocolate icecream.

I've been busy the last few days. I worked all day Friday. And Saturday had a singing lesson with my new teacher, who is very pleased with my progress. Then i met my mom at the movies for the Metropolitan Opera simulcast of Aida. I enjoyed it very much! Do you know about these simulcasts? It's better than being at the opera live! We see Turandot next and then Tales of Hoffman. The audience is filled with geriatrics and you have to get there to save a seat 2 hours before 'showtime', but they let you bring picnic baskets into the theater. Everyone is eating their own stuff sitting at the movie theater. It's a hoot. Of course, i noshed on avocado and apples and salad.

After that, i helped my mommy with her makeup and glamorized her for a party out. I did some work on the computer and then headed home, just missing a torrential downpour.

This morning, i read about 10 chapters of 'Devil Bones', one of the Temperance Brennan novels. I can't put it down! I have an audition to sing at a Halloween Party this morning and then I'm off to downtown Phila with Cliff. Just getting ready to go back in the kitchen to vocalize. Wish me luck! It's a masquerade party and the hosts would like an opera sing to sing throughout the evening. With any luck, that will be ME!

So, this is a day in the life of an opera singing raw foodist!

Have a wonderful day!
xoxoxoxo michelle joy

Friday, October 23, 2009

What We Resist Persists

From absolute DESPAIR and hopelessness.....

To PURE RAW JOY!!! It's as easy as changing the way we THINK!!!

Good morning, ladies!!!

I'm really gaining alot of insight into my eating issues! I think today's teaching is one of the most important and the one with the biggest implications in my life. Thinking positively must become like a 'religion' and constantly occupy my mind, in order to beat this!

Here is the next teaching, "What We Resist Persists', from The Breakaway Program, an online stop binge eating program that i am following, led by Nadine Ann. Nadines words are in italics.

Below the teachings, you will find my RESPONSE work, an exercise i created myself inspired from the teachings. You will see my positive messages to myself in red. They are powerful! and I feel GREAT now!!!!!!!


Indeed, what we resist persists. You’ve most likely heard that 'like attracts like' and that is exactly what we get when we focus on resistance. The more you resist something the longer it hangs around. If you constantly think of what you don’t want, you will get more of what you don’t want. If you think you don’t want to binge any more, stop thinking about binging. Think about what you do want such as joy, peace, good health, and abundance.

Talk show host Larry King interviewed a few powerful motivators (James Ray, Jack Canfield, and Michael Beckwith to name a few) and the common denominator to their good wealth, good health and lives filled with joy is that they all focus on the positive. They focus on what they want, not on what they don’t want.

So if we keep focusing on binging we will keep binging. Let’s focus on healing our minds and bodies to obtain optimal health instead. Keep your eye on what you want. “I choose optimal health.”

W. Clement Stone wrote a fantastic book titled 'Believe and Achieve' which detailed 17 principles to achieve anything in life. The book has been re-written by many people in different forms and the media has made millions of dollars from The Secret movie but the bottom line has always been the same…what the mind believes, the mind can achieve. We are going to apply this concept to everything we do.

Now let’s go back to when you practiced being the observer and try observing yourself having a conversation with a friend or family member about your eating habits or about anything you said you didn’t want or didn’t like.

Now observe yourself re-writing the conversation and hearing yourself say the words so that you are focusing only on what you DO want. Hear your voice tell your friend that you want happiness, joy, a great job, a wonderful marriage, whatever you think in a positive way.

See yourself looking happier about it as you focus on the positive and not the negative.

Didn’t that seem much happier to observe it in a positive state? Now it can become a goal to work toward instead of a dread to avoid.

One of my favorite people to listen to is Dr. Joe Vitale. Joe Vitale speaks from the heart, tells it like it is and always thinks in a positive way. He has written many books on how to attract things into your life by focusing on what you want and not on what you don’t want. His book 'The Attractor Factor' uses the Law of Attraction to get what you want and I especially like how he gives real examples of how the ‘magic’ works! Although it’s not really magic it’s a Universal Law just like the Law of Gravity and everyone has the ability to use it.

Dr. Vitale sums up his book in 5 steps:

1. Know what you don’t want.
2. Select what you do want.
3. Clear all negative or limiting beliefs.
4. Feel what it would be like to have, do, or be what you want.
5. Let go as you act on your intuitive impulses, and allow the results to manifest.

Joe Vitale knows how to get what he wants by not resisting. He doesn’t dwell on what he doesn’t want because he knows that all he’ll get is more of what he doesn’t want.

Why are you resisting change? What we resist persists. Start out simple and try telling yourself that when you change you are simply changing the way you think about things. For now we can simply change the way we think. Your thoughts create your reality so if you change the way you think about things you change your reality. Think of what you want, not of what you don’t want and you’ve already begun the process of change.

It’s time to focus on what you do want. When you realize your power to change the direction of your own thoughts, that’s when the magic happens. It's simple and easy and not scary at all!

_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _


EXERCISE: Write out what you don't want and, then what you want. First present desires in the negative, then counter with a corresponding desire in the positive.

Notice how much BETTER you feel after stating what you want using POSITIVE WORDS ONLY!!!!! You may find it challenging as i did to truly stay completely positive without using the words "don't, can't, stop, bad, without, by not, never, won't, etc..."







  • I don't want to get sick. I WANT TO BE FULL OF HEALTH!



  • I don't want to feel tired and worn out. I WANT TO FEEL ENERGETIC AND HAVE ABOUNDING ENERGY!

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

WHAT DO YOU WANT? I'd really LOVE to hear from you! Write me a comment and tell me what you don't want in your life, and then counter that statement in the positive! It's so empowering!

In fact, i will write down my positive desires on paper and keep them with me today, referring to them often! Let me know if doing the same would be helpful to you!

xoxox michelle joy

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Willingness To Change

Excerpt of Teaching on "Willingness To Change" from by Nadine Ann

My responses to the exercises/questions below in RED

When we’re faced with changing our ways we often put up the proverbial wall. We don’t want to think that the way we were doing something before was wrong. We want everything around us to change so we don’t have to! Those are the external changes we talked about earlier. And as you can tell, that hasn’t been working very well, has it.

In truth, the first part of change needs to happen within us. We must forget about the outside or external influences and concentrate on what we feel inside that isn't working. Our thought patterns need to change because we have gotten into a negative thought pattern of binging and of our feelings about food. To be honest, food is a miracle. Without it, we are nothing.

Let’s do an exercise. Use a hand held mirror or simply use your bathroom mirror and ask yourself this question while looking into your own eyes.

“Am I willing to change?” -
yes, i am. i joined this online program, i do the work, i do the homework, i practice the exercises. i am willing to change. what i've been doing has not been working for me.

"What would it mean to me if I made some changes to myself?" if i made some changes to myself, i would feel better about me, be more in control and be happier.

“What am I willing to change?” I am willing to change the way i go about eating. When i feel an uncomfortable feeling, my first instinct is to think of food and eat. Now, i can allow myself to feel my feelings, even if it makes me feel bad. It doesn't compare to the bad feelings of weight gain and binge eating. I'm willing to observe myself more and become more in tune with my automatic food thoughts and with automatic negative thoughts. I'm wiling to listen to my body more, eat when i'm hungry and stop when i've had enough. I'm willing to stop trying to 'diet' to lose weight and just focus on enjoying the pleasure of food. I'm willing to slow down and not eat when i'm not hungry.

"When will I be willing to make these changes?" i've already started, so i am willing to make these changes, now!

"If you said you were willing to change, how did you feel when you told yourself you were willing to change?" It feels good to be willing to change. it feels good to realize the way i was trying to help myself may have only been self defeating.

Now say to yourself while looking in your mirror, “I am willing to change.” I am willing to change!!!

If you answered that you weren't willing to change, examine your reasons and ask questions if you feel you are not ready to change. Or if you said you were willing, play devil's advocate and answer the questions anyway:

"Why wouldn't I want to change if it will bring me happiness?" Am I afraid?
You know, actually FEAR is a poignant point. I did this exercise when everything was going great with the food - I've been eating as a response to hunger, as best as i can, making choices that please me.

But i had 2 eating experiences yesterday that were less than ideal, and i think they had to do with fear. I had to do a singing performance last night, so for lunch, it would have been best had i chosen to not eat anything too oily, as it does give me reflux laryngitis symptoms, for me, a groggy throat, not great when one has to sing soaring high notes. Why i had such a greasy salad i'll never know. It wasn't a binge, so i wasn't being rebellious, pouring on the oil and feeling horrible about it. It was supposed to be a healthy pleasant joy-filled lunch, but as i munched on the salad, i realized it was too greasy for me, i have overdone it on the dressing and honestly, i really wasn't enjoying it. I had put BOTH avocado AND dressing on the salad. It was too much. Not just from a health standpoint, but from a taste standpoint, it was just too greasy.

Later, singing, i 'felt' a bit refluxy and the salad even repeated on me a few times. I sung through it. The new technique is helping me to sing 'over' problems and to use air and sing on the breath. for the belching, i took some betaine hcl, but it taught me that 1) if i'm not enjoying something, throw it out. 2) before singing, don't eat anything too fatty. 3) fear may have been a motivating factor in why i made such a bad choice.

Was i self sabotaging? Am i afraid of SUCCESS??? I actually think i am.

Last night, i received an email from a friend who performs regularly in japan. He is a pianist and is looking for a soprano for a 3 month gig in japan. I talked this over with Cliff, who was initially open to the idea, as i would make roughly 8,500$ for the 3 month gig. But as he thought about it, he became more and more opposed to the idea and i became more and more for it. As we discussed it, i CLEARLY noted in my body that i was not hungry. i was clearly disturbed over the conversation, but didn't realize, recognize, that this would have been a time to just FEEL and not EAT. I wasn't hungry. i had just eaten a few bananas and some tangerines. Good healthy oil free before bed foods.

Yet, as Cliff and I debated the idea, i began to grab at flax crackers to munch and then flax crackers and almond butter and a chocolate ball. I was CLEARLY out of touch with my body, and snacking away, why?

Firstly, why do i want to give myself reflux? Eating fatty foods before bed is disasterous to my singing voice.

Secondly, why don't i want to FEEL? Why if i THINK of a food, do i have to eat it? There is a serious disconnect. I need to MUCH more aware of my thoughts and how they lead me to dishonor my body.

Thirdly, am i afraid of success????? I think i am.

Why was i eating, anyway? stress? opportunity? fear? Fear at the implications of a possible singing job abroad...., of success?

This really caught me off guard last night. I had food thoughts and responded to them. I knew i wasn't hungry, yet i chose to eat anyway.

Later, while watching a movie, the impulse to continue to to eat arose. I felt the feeling, or watched the thought, and then it passed without me responding.

So, i am getting better.

Just as with my new singing technique which seems to be working really well, i do still fall back into old habits and struggle to find the right way. PRACTICE MAKES PERFECT.

The more positive eating experiences i have, the better and better i'll get at listening to my body...and not my HEAD!!!

Keep digging to find the truth of resistance.

Make a list in your JOURNAL of reasons why you think you are not ready to change. Then write down next to those answers why you feel you are not ready. Then you can begin to challenge your own answers until you find your hidden feelings. You can challenge them by asking WHY.

"Why do I want to keep binging when it makes me unhappy?"
I realize there are times when my guard is down and i'm not in touch with what is bothering me and i feel like a person on automatic pilot with thoughts of eating and the desperate need to go eat... i can pull back now and try to get into touch with what's truly bothering me. I'm unhappy either way. Either i'm unhappy about something, or i'm unhappy about eating. At least if i feel my feelings, i have a chance of doing something about it. if i eat, i just get fatter. if i decide i want to binge, it's because i'm distoredly thinking it will make me feel better. Yes, it will, but only temporarily. Afterwards, i'll feel worse than i did before, nothing's changed and the binge response has only gotten stronger.

"Why do I think food is making me happy?" Well, it's not making me happy in a lasting way. temporarily, maybe. But ultimately, i have never had a binge and afterwards thought to myself, "i'm so happy i did that, i feel better." There is always huge remorse. Because while it might have provided me momentary pleasure, the pain it causes afterwards, weight gain, hopelessness at being out of control isn't worth it.

If you are not willing to change, it probably means that this is the one area you need to change the most! What we resist persists.

xoxoxo michelle joy

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Different Kinds of Binges

Hiya Ladies,

Hope you are all well. If anyone has tried to get into and was unsuccessful, so was i today. Their server was down almost all day, but i've finally gotten back in.

Here is the next teaching that i am up to. I think it is immensely powerful to be able to look and see what we do...and figure out WHY we do it. I had never contemplated that there were different kinds of binges, but upon reading this and really thinking about it, i agree there are.

I hope this helps anyone suffering to gain more clarity. You'll read an excerpt from the teaching on binges and then read my homework journal regarding the teaching.

"Different Kinds of Binges" from

With understanding, things becomes clearer. Understanding allows your brain the ability to become clear so there are no wrong or misdirected beliefs about something. Just as there are many influences that lead to binge eating, there are also many types of binges. You may experience one, some or even all of them at some point during your experience with eating disorders. We also know that anyone can be affected by this eating disorder.

Dr. Joyce D. Nash wrote “Although dieting that leads to hunger and stress – which in turn produces negative emotions – is strongly involved in setting off binge eating, binges are also caused by a variety of other factors. These include feeling deprived, having the opportunity to binge, wanting to extract retribution for wrongs, wanting to feel good, or bad eating habits.”

The Hunger Binge – this type of binge is triggered by physical deprivation. The brain is trained to seek out food when it thinks the body is being starved. It’s a primal instinct that will never go away. Your brain will act as if it is the last task on Earth to complete and will hunt down any and all means to food. When it finds food it will binge to make sure it ‘stocks up’ in case famine comes again.

The Deprivation Binge – this binge is similar to the hunger binge but is psychologically driven rather than driven by physical hunger. For example, when certain foods are restricted because they are ‘bad’ or ‘forbidden’, tension builds up and a breaking point is eventually reached with a binge.

The Stress Binge – this type of binge occurs when a person’s ability to cope with certain stressors is too great for them to handle. Another term for the Stress Binge is Emotional Eating. Better coping skills are required to help reduce stress.

The Opportunity Binge – this binge usually occurs even though there is no hunger or stress, although it can mirror a deprivation binge slightly. The Opportunity Binge occurs when there is plenty of time and privacy. Boredom can influence this binge as can continually dwelling on food.

The Vengeful Binge – this binge is greatly generated by anger and the binger could be angry at herself or another person or situation. Anger could be toward the person’s body and thinking that they cannot ‘control’ themselves. It could be a form of self-punishment.

The Pleasure Binge – this binge is designed to enhance pleasure and stimulation. When outside sources of pleasure are minimum this binger goes to town eating as a source of entertainment and reward. The Habit Binge – this binge consists of grazing all day long and eating automatically without much thinking to it. Food is readily available and most bingers in this category binge out of the pure habit of it.

Binging takes on a life of its own after a while and it is common to feel ‘lost’ and ‘out of control’.

The binge cycle looks something like this:

1. Feelings of unease and dissatisfaction

2. Desire to cover over those feelings

3. Use of food (abstention or consumption) as chosen method

4. Feelings of guilt, shame, self-hate, and hopelessness after the binge

5. Renewed self-hatred over weakness

6. Emotionally predisposed to repeat the behavior

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~


Wow. It's like seriously important to analyze the types of binges i fall prey to.

The "hunger" binge, i suppose, happens when you are truly ravenously hungry. This may happen occassionally, after a performance, but i don't usually let myself get THAT hungry from day to day, and if an eating session from hunger keeps going on and on and on, say, after a singing performance, i'm guessing i'm somehow releasing pentup energy, or stress, or had been feeling deprived. I think a 'hunger' binge is not something that frequently happens to me. Perhaps this is more appropriate to an anorexic, who routinely starve themselves, so that when they DO eat, they can't stop, as physiologically, they are storing up energy for the next famine.

The "deprivation" binge, however, happens when food has been restricted severely and foods are labeled as bad or dangerous, and YES, I succumb to this type of binge frequently, as i've been dieting 80-10-10 as a means to stop binge eating. Unfortunately, i wasn't emotionally able to stay on 80-10-10, or perhaps just unwilling to give up so much pleasurable food, but after being on 80-10-10 for a time, i WANTED a treat, a gourmet treat. The only PROBLEM was, i couldn't STOP with just a little and the eating would get out of control and escalate and i was binging and then binging went on for days because i knew soon enough i'd have to diet again and i'd not be able to eat this or that so i'd better stuff myself with it, now. Deprivation binge eating has STOPPED since i've been feeding myself more pleasurable foods, not counting my fats or restricting salt. I think there is hope here.

The "Stress" binge is also a HUGE part of my repertoire. The place i binge repeatedly and habitually is at work in a busy, stressful kitchen. Stress binging also happens when i am under emotional stress, which is quite frequent as well. Emotionally, i tend to want to EAT instead of face my fears, my discomforts, my nerves. Lately i've been singing alot and if i have a singing engagement, i'm nervous, i'm worried, i'm scared, perhaps i'm not feeling well, or i'm ill prepared. My first instinct is to EAT. Binge eating because i feel sad or upset about something happens i'm sure regularly, but i'm much less aware of it, isn't that interesting? I think there is a general disconnect between how i feel emotionally and how this leads to using food to calm or comfort myself.

The "Opportunity" binge is like something that happened to me the other night when i had bread in the car and I was in a bad weak place and was having bad food thoughts and the opportunity to binge was right in front of my face with leftovers in the car. I wasn't necessarily in stress and i had just eaten a wonderful meal so i don't think i was feeling deprived. I think the opportunity was there, and had it NOT been, i may not have binged.

Eating at work, non stop, is also the "Pleasure" binge. As a cook, there are chores that are tedious. Chopping veggies, doing dishes, peeling bananas. There is so little pleasure sometimes in these chores that i'm often bored, so I snack continuously, which affords me alot of stimulation and sensational pleasure. This is something i really have to guard against. One just has to be strong and find the pleasure in tedious tasks. Find the pleasure in anything. And resist eating for excitement or diversion or pleasurable sensations.

One of the most interesting things to me, is the binge cycle. Before there is ever a binge, there is a negative emotion, uncomfortable feeling. I have been long disconnected from this. I usually see bingeing as a reaction to EATING something i shouldn't have, instead of as a reaction to FEELING something i obviously don't want to.

In being more aware of this, i can really allow myself to FEEL instead of eat, and you know what? It's not always so pleasant, feeling.

For instance, I have to sing tomorrow and i'm quite nervous. I'm not feeling that great physically and i'm worried on many levels about tomorrow's performance. So, today, i found myself experiencing random food thoughts that had dissappeared the last few days.

Now, usually, i would have experienced a food thought and i would have ACTED upon it. Today, however, i saw it, and just saw it. And then i realized how my nerves are really bad today and how i'd love to eat to FORGET because i feel scared and feel not so great physically actually.

This is a big learning lesson.

Really, what does binge eating do, but make us feel better, temporarily, until we feel WORSE??? Look at the binge cycle...remorse afterwards, always.

I've often been aware that i use binge eating to ALLOW myself to FEEL BAD. After i binge i always feel bad. But, now, instead of feeling badly over what i really feel badly about, i feel badly about binge eating. It's a way to distract ourselves from our real feelings.

It's good, though, to be aware enough to have caught it BEFORE it happened today. I SAW the thoughts. I felt the discomfort. And i didn't respond.

Instead, i studied. And i wrote. And when i got truly hungry, i ate a Honeycrisp apple.


xoxo michelle joy

Pure Raw Joy Recipes!

Hello, Lovlies,

Okay, if you're a creative like me, you are going to love these, um, sort of recipes. If you are not creative and just like to follow a pre-written no fail recipe, good luck, this will be a new experience for you!

I made several fantabulous dishes this week. My favorite way of cooking raw is to just see what i have in the fridge and the cubbard, become inspired, use the 5 tastes as a guide for savory dishes, and just come up with something. I taste often and depending on what my tounge senses, i add or fix.

For instance, if something is too thin: add a thickener, nuts thicken, for one.
If something is too bland, try lemon juice, or more salt.
If something is too salty, add agave
If something is too blah, add spicy elements (ginger, garlic, onion, spices)
Always add a bitter element to any savory dish to balance it. Bitter elements are green. Parsley, basil, cilantro, celery leaves.

Ask yourself the following question: what makes a salad (bitter greens) taste good? A dressing generally includes the other 4 complementary tastes: a spicy element (pepper or onion or garlic or shallot), a salty element (salt or mustard), a tart element (vinegar or citrus juice), a sweet element (a little sugar, or shredded carrot in the salad or raisins in the salad), and oil, which is a neutral taste.

The 5 tastes are: salty, spicy, sour, bitter, sweet. 4 's' words and 1 'b' word.

salty things are: celtic or himalyan salt, dulse, kelp, nutritional yeast, celery
sweet things are: agave, honey, dates, carrots, beets, raisins
spicy things are: garlic, ginger, onion, cayenne, chili powder, curry
tart things are: lemon, lime, vinegar
bitter things are: greens, salad greens, green herbs, celery leaves

If a savory raw dish includes all 5 tastes, in a balance that makes sense, it will ALWAYS taste good!

On these particular occasions, the "recipes" below, what i just came up with happened to be kick ass.

If you are willing to experiment, use your tastebuds and the 5 flavors as a guide for savory dishes, have fun with these ingredients and try to recreate this on your own. i'll give you as much guidance as i can!

With sweet dishes, i always add a little salt. When you bake a sweet cake, there is always salt! I also sometimes hide a little spicy element in there as well. Often, i'll add a tart to a sweet, such as lemon juice in a raw pie. i don't think i've ever added a green element to a sweet to add a bitter. But cacao is naturally bitter. And so is tahini. So sometimes there are bitter elements in a sweet.

Experiment and have fun! There are no disasters. If something you make tastes awful, fix it, or dehydrate it! Often gross outcomes make the best burgers or bread or cookies.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

walnut curry pate - with s blad in cuisinart, add:
walnuts, 2 cups, have another cup on hand to add in should the pate be too thin.
cashew, 1 cup
lemons/limes - 3 juiced. add half of juice at first. citrus juice is a must in all pates as it provides acidity, tartness and brightness. if pate is bland at end, continue to add lemon/lime juice, and have extra on hand should you need more, often necessary.
water - have 1/2 cup standing by if citrus juice does not provide enough moisture. error on leaving it too thick as it can always be thinned out.
garlic - 4 or 5 cloves - spicy element
ginger, fresh and dried - 4 or 5 slices - spicy element
scallions, 2 chopped - add at end if another spicy element is desired.
chili powder, no salt - 2 Tbsp - spicy element
hot madras curry - 2 Tbsp or more- spicy element
garam masala - 2 Tbsp or more - spicy element
cumin - 1 heaping tsp
jalapeno 2 or 3 slices - spicy element
1/2 red pepper - add in early
carrot - 2 medium. Add in last and whir leaving slightly visible - sweet element
celery - 3 stalks chopped. Add in last and whir leaving slightly visible - salty and bitter element
red onion - 1/4 of a small, keep an extra 1/4 to add in at end if desired - spicy element
agave - 1 Tbsp
celtic salt - 1 tsp. Taste pate and adjust near end with more celtic salt or agave

Pate should come out a light brown color and should be the consistency of hummus with a spicy curry bite, yet balanced in salt, sweetness, tartness. after a few days, i swear it tasted to me like curry chopped liver. mmm.

Serve with chopped tomato, celery, onion, chopped cilantro (bitter element), and golden raisins on a green based salty flax cracker (bitter element). GENIUS!!!!

hot chocolate - in vitamix with cap on
1/2 cup any seed or nut, have extra on hand
agave to taste, have 1/4 cup available, drizzle in and taste when drink is done. add more as necessary.
several spoonfulls of raw cacao. taste to adjust chocolatelyness. keep adding until it tastes good. raw chocolate is bitter, so make sure you add enough agave.
celtic salt, pinch
few droppers vanilla extract
2 cups water, have another on hand, blend to desired 'creaminess' or thinness

blenderize several minutes until warm! adjust sweetness/chocolatelyness!

bliss balls - in cuisinart with s blade, add:
any nut, 2 cups
cacao 3 Tbsp or more to achieve chocolatelyness
1 cup coconut shredded. use organic unsweeted shredded coconut
celtic salt, good pinch of ground variety only. if dough is too sweet, add a little more celtic salt before dough balls up.
a few pinches cayenne or black pepper or chili powder, if desired.
vanilla, 1 tsp - 1 tbsp, to your taste. i love vanilla so usually add a lot.
agave, have 1/2 cup on hand...pour in gradually, using agave as your source of moisture. you'll have added enough when "dough" forms a ball

blend with cuisinart with s blade until forms a ball. you'll have to redistribute 'dough' often as it is very thick. with enough agave, you should form a ball.

Roll dough into small bitesize balls. Roll little balls into coconut shreds to coat. Or coat with cacao, cinnamon, chopped nuts, etc...

Before rolling into balls, I had some vanilla cashew cream and some chocolate cream which i squirted into the middle of the balls before rolling. yum!

xoxoxo michelle joy

Monday, October 19, 2009

Binge Eating - At WAR with yourself....or at PEACE??

Good morning, dear Folks,

I am headed off for my first walk in 5 days. It's been raining here non-stop and it's been cold. Okay, lame excuse. I do have a gym membership. Point taken.

Nevertheless, i am walking to the hospital to get some blood drawn. I had the DR write me up a script, since i am a vegan, most of the time when i don't submit to raw cheese, not that there's anything wrong with sure tastes good! I'd like to see if i am low on B12 or IRON. For years, i've been ANEMIC and i've not been supplementing my iron recently. I'd like to see how my overall bloodwork comes out.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

I feel good about my eating. I'm eating when i get hungry, eating what i want, raw vegan, and i think this is the course i am going to follow for right now. 80-10-10 was an external measure taken to lose weight quickly. The only problem was, since I wasn't willing to stay on it forever, i always went off into gourmet-binges and gained everything back i just lost anyway. So, you could say that 80-10-10 for me is a WEIGHT GAINING DIET...because eventually, i'd gain the weight back. This is just MY reaction to it.

What i'd like to do NOW is become more attuned to my body, not care so much about percentages of what i feed it, ENJOY MY FOOD MORE, AND ultimately eat LESS because i won't be binge eating anymore. SUCCESS!! After THAT is achieved, maybe i WILL move to a cleaner raw diet....BUT, i'll no longer binge when i decide to eat something a little heavier. I will be in control, intuitively, naturally. WOW!!!

I'm working my new program online to heal binge eating and i'm LOVIN' it!!! Here's what i've been reading and writing on:

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

LESSON 2 - THE POWER TO HEAL I cut and pasted this lesson here from the website. I try to read it over and over again, because some of it is a little cryptic and hard for me to understand, but the more i read it, the more i see what a disconnect there is between my body, my conscious mind and my subconscious mind. I wanted to share this with you. What's been powerful is the website's positive influence over my subconscious mind. My eating is ALREADY vastly improved, probably because my subconsicous mind knows there is hope on the horizon now. Below is my homework assignment from this lesson.

Binge Eating Disorder can be healed. In fact, you can heal yourself starting this very second. You have had the power all along and always will have the power to self-heal. It’s what your body does best under the right conditions.

Let’s say you broke a bone in your body. Instantly, your body swells in the area of trauma to prevent further injury. Your blood increases in the area to provide more oxygen to the cells in trouble. The bone will begin to automatically repair itself over the next few weeks until it has healed itself. You didn’t have to sit on your couch and mentally think about healing the broken bone 24 hours a day because your subconscious mind did it for you.

The subconscious mind does a lot for you that you just don’t think about. It basically runs your system or body and wants everything to run optimally and smoothly. Your belief systems are stored in your subconscious mind and are held there like a sacred shimmering treasure pot of gold. Your subconscious mind has no ability to censor or reject information.

Your conscious mind makes decisions about every day life such as where you want to go to dinner or what shopping mall to go to and how much fun you are going to have today. It is the part of you that thinks and reasons. Your conscious mind decides what food to eat throughout the day. Your free-will lies in this part of your mind. All of the pain, pleasure, abundance or limitation is either originated in your conscious mind or is accepted uncritically from an outside source as a “belief”.

Any thought that you continuously impress upon your subconscious mind will become fixed and habitual. In other words, if you are constantly saying to yourself that you are a terrible person for binging and that you have no control and this is the way you are, your subconscious mind will accept that and those thoughts will become a belief system imbedded deeply in your mind. Thoughts have no power over us unless we give in to them.

We must get into the belief systems that you hold and examine if those beliefs are true or if they are not true. Something interesting to think about here is that the subconscious mind cannot understand a negative thought. For example, if I were to say “I don’t want to binge anymore”, the only thing my subconscious mind hears is the word binge. If I were to change that sentence by saying “I want to eat healthy moderate meals”, my subconscious mind will hear healthy moderate meals. It doesn’t understand the words don’t, can’t, shouldn’t, won’t, haven’t or any other negative word. Put your thoughts into the positive.

What you might not be aware of is the inner struggle between the conscious mind and the subconscious mind. Here lies the trouble and the powerful source of binge eating. There are disconnecting thoughts between the two parts of the mind. Binge eating has nothing to do with willpower or forcing yourself to “be good”. So drop that belief right now.

Binge eating happens when the struggle is so great that there is never a cease fire between the body and the mind. When you have this kind of inner struggle you are sending a message to your body that you don’t like it, and intend to hurt it by starving it or stuffing it so full of food that it hurts. You are saying that you don’t understand its needs, and are ashamed, embarrassed, and unhappy with it. This is not good! You must make peace.

~ ~ ~ ~

Here's my homework on this teaching:


Do i feel a war going on between my mind and my body?

VERY MUCH SO! My mind tells me to eat things that i don't necessarily WANT to eat because i know they are no good for my body. Recently, i had a slip into cooked foods that i had not eaten in almost 3 years. In the car taking home leftovers from my aunt's meal to bring to Cliff, i succumbed to eating real bread. I KNEW intellectually that i shouldn't because i feel very much like a WHEAT ADDICT and once i would eat bread, what would stop me from eating pasta and potatoes and mounds of butter on it, etc... So, intellectually, the voice of reason said, "DON'T DO IT!". But, there was another voice i heard, saying, 'what's the big deal? once you ate bread at the raw retreat and got right back on track the next day. susan eats bread.' So, i did it. I don't think i was necessarily hungry, so this was not so much a war between my mind and body, but between my mind...and my mind. One was subconscious and one was conscious. Not sure which was which yet!

The war between my mind and my body seems to occur with gourmet raw. My body craves delicious gourmet raw food, mmmm...salt and garlic and nut pate and raw bread and chocolate sauce and chocolate milk, but my mind says," Don't eat it, you'll gain weight! You won't be able to stop! It's DANGEROUS! You need to go on a diet!" My mind rebels, i want what i want, and when i give in, i hear powerful messages of how weak i am and how i can't stop and how it's so good it's dangerous and then i have great difficulty stopping. I have lost control over it and only want it now. I'd better eat it up now, because i know i'll be dieting again and won't be able to have it. How did food become a dangerous weapon?

My mouth and my mind craves fatty foods, but they are not GOOD for my body. Or should i say, they are not good for my body in the way that "I" eat them. I go hogwild. From fear. From desire.

My mind thinks thoughts of binge eating constantly, sometimes, i suppose when i deprive myself the most, and i listen and follow. Everytime i do it, i'm programming myself to do as it says. My belly, my body, is supposed to be the thing to tell me to eat. How did it switch to me hearing little voices prompting me to eat and i follow like some crazed person hearing voices and commanding?

It makes me think of serial killers. They think horrible kill for example, and then they FOLLOW those thoughts into ACTION...because they feel helpless to say NO to their thoughts. I feel EXACTLY the same when i binge. I have ALWAYS felt terrible sympathy for criminals because of this. We are the SAME. We are COMPELLED to act.


Well, even before i hear voices to stop binge eating, I definitely hear a voice that says it wants something, and then something else and then something else. This is the binge voice. It's a free for all at that point. Every THOUGHT, "OH, raw carrot bread." "Oh, raw corn bread." Each thought is answered by my hand going to my mouth. It feels like being under the control of hypnosis or something. It seems impossible at times to NOT obey. Especially at work when i am stressed and not focused and am working with delicious food, it often feels impossible to not listen to that voice.

Once i give in, the voice talks and commands me more and more. And i fall victim to it again and again and again. And that makes my ability to say NO to it weaker and weaker and the habit is formed.

As far as a voice telling me to STOP binge eating, yes, i have this too, but i'm more aware of the voice that just tells me what it wants and i obey, like a robot. I suppose after i am done and my body is so sick and stuffed and full and bloated that the messages to stop binge eating and the remorse really kick in. That's when i go back on 80-10-10, cut out all salt and fat and DIET. The only problem is, i can never stay on it and i always return to binge eating.


Oh, god, yes. i feel hopeless. I feel like a failure. I'll tell myself i can't work with raw food anymore because i can't control myself around it. Or i tell myself i'll never be able to lose more weight. Or when i gain weight, i tell myself i'm an embarrassment and a failure. Mostly i just feel hopeless. And mostly i tell myself it is the FOOD that is to blame, such as i am addicted to fat or salt or whatever and then i restrict myself terribly and then there is no other option but to binge out of that.


I would like to say to my body: "Body, you know how much to eat and what you want. I would love to honor your hunger signals and give you enough food to fill your belly and enjoy eating without overstuffing you or without eating when you're not even hungry. I'm so sorry i've been abusive to you by listening to my distorted mind...instead of YOU. I feel badly when I don't honor you. You are my best friend, you want me to enjoy life and food, and you know what i need. I just need to learn to trust you, and listen."


I have listened to those distored voices in my mind for so long that my body has suffered through binge after binge. I'm so sorry! I think that when i stop obeying the insane thoughts in my head to eat at all body will feel so much better, lighter with less food and more enjoyment and satisfaction. When obeying my obsessive thoughts is not controlling my food intake, my body and mind will be at PEACE.


YES! Food has been dangerous to me. "Don't eat that!" Well, of course i do. And i eat the whole thing, instead of allowing myself to enjoy one portion.

You and the "secret" have taught the mind doesn't understand messages in the negative. I "know" this, but i forget!!! If i say, "I don't want to binge anymore," my mind hears only "binge!" and it obeys!

I must flood my mind with positive messages, such as "I eat when i am hungry and i enjoy my food and stop when i've had enough."

xoxoxo michelle joy

Sunday, October 18, 2009

A Wonderful Sunday!

Hiya Friends,

I feel really excited right now! I had some really great experiences with food, and with singing today! It was a pure raw joy day!

I had a concert at the Unitarian Universalist House of a program I do with my accompanist, Alex, called "From Opera To Broadway." There are two images of us above, one from our concert today, oops, sorry it came out on the bottom, and sorry you have to crook your neck to see it; and one from our concert two weeks ago on top. In "Opera To Broadway," we survey vocal and pianistic solos from Puccini, Gershwin, Rodgers and Hammerstein, Andrew Lloyd Webber and Lerner and Lowe. The audiences just LOVE it!

Working my new singing technique, i experienced more freedom in my singing and better control, although i'm still struggling somewhat. I still have lots of work to do to perfect my new way of singing, i still fell back into bad habits today, but at least I'm more aware of them.

Last night, however, at an open mike night i sang at, i sang 4 numbers, i was really ON and was able to incorporate my new technique almost exclusively in the songs I sang and felt SUPER free and able to be as expressive as i wanted to be. It felt so wonderful. Today's concert was much earlier in the day and i wasn't as warmed up as i should have been, so the outcome was not as successful as last night's singing, yet, still, i see much improvement. Lesson learned on warming up enough.

After the concert, there was a lovely reception and a yummy fresh fruit salad was offered. What a treat to chomp on fresh pineapple! But, the pineapple only whet my appetite... By the time the reception was over, it was 5p.m. and i hadn't eaten since 10:30a.m. I was SOOO hungry!!!!

Well, hungry is good! I felt like a 'treat,' not a 'binge,' but a 'treat,' so i headed over to Whole Foods for a BIG yummy salad and some "Awesome Foods" flax crackers. Normally, this could have turned into a binge, this trip to Whole Foods, but something has clicked in my head working the new "breakaway" stop-binge eating program. I stayed "conscious," listened and was aware of my thoughts, my hunger, and let that still small voice inside, the quietest voice speak the loudest.

Somehow, i was more able to make better choices, more able to listen to my hunger and address it, more able to stop when i'd had enough.

After my salad, i felt sorry i hadn't bought anything chocolately because i really wanted something chocolately and i was getting ready to head back into Whole Foods for an "Awesome Foods" raw chocolate fudge bar, but, boy, was i ever happy to remember i could make some raw hot chocolate at home, thank you, Meredith!!!! ( for her raw marshmellows recipe!!!) and have a leftover "Bliss Ball" from the open mike night.

When i got home, i blended up in the vitamix, water, raw cacao, agave, vanilla, celtic salt and sunflower seeds into a frappy blend. I let one serving whir until it was warm. Mmmmm, it hit the spot. A few flax crackers with leftover curry walnut pate (this stuff i made was so freakin' good, it tasted like curry flavored chopped liver, i'm going to call a version of it, "CHOPPED LOVER" instead. Is that brilliant or what???), followed by 2 bliss balls completed a gourmet meal, NOT A BINGE, that was happy, to LIVE for, peaceful mentally, and just plain wonderful.

No berating mental thoughts, no dieting, no rebelling, just LIVING. If i never lose another pound, this is how i'd like to live.

All of the 80-10-10 stuff is way cool and an excellent cleanse, and much simpler way to live for many folks out there. But for me, i have to learn how not to binge first, to be present and enjoy my food before i go that extreme again. This makes SENSE to me. "Dieting" by way of 80-10-10 as a reaction to binge eating gourmet wasn't really the answer i was looking for. I still never gained control over my erratic eating. I was either black or white. Today i was GREY and it's a wonderful color. I feel HOPEFUL! In becoming more aware of my thoughts that have driven me to eat in the past, in becoming more attuned to my wants and desires, i suddenly feel able to enjoy food guilt-free, without it ever escalating into a negative thing.

This is living!

xoxoxo michelle joy


Morning, Ladies,

If you're in the Philly area and are interested in RAW HOLIDAY TRAYS and PIES or in IN HOME RAW COOKING LESSONS or WEEKLY FOOD PREP, please think of me. Also, I give SINGING LESSONS and am accepting new students now. For HOLIDAY TRAYS, please scroll down a few posts.

Hope you are all doing well! I'm feeling a little sleepy on this rainy dreary Philadelphia morning, but i have to get up and crackin' soon, i have a busy day today!

I performed last night at a private open mike night party and was very well received! I sang "Summertime", "O mio babbino caro", Carmen's "Habanera" and "Cheek to Cheek". I was more nervous than usual due to the new singing technique i'm learning and experimenting with and practicing, but, i'm thrilled to report it's working! Singing felt easier than ever and Cliff said i sounded "freer, fuller, more effortless, beautiful!" I'm very jazzed about that.

Unfortunately, i don't get much of a rest until i have to test out the new technique again. I sing a concert TODAY at 2:30p.m. at the Unitarian Universalist House in Mt. Airy, PA. Wish me luck!

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Overall, i'm feeling SO hopeful these days about the future of my eating i've started this online stop-binge holistic eating program called "The Breakaway Program," created by a holistic nutritionist and therapist, who healed herself of binge eating and uses her 'scientifically-proven' program to help people heal themselves of binge eating.

The program is broken down into 2 months of daily teachings and assignments. It is not a food program or a food restriction program. It is a program to heal onesself through emotional and mental and spiritual...healing.

The food, says Natalie, the program creator, is not the problem. Food restriction doesn't work and she promises one can stop binge eating by eating any kind of food. Well, what a tantalizing proposition.

However, I am committed to sticking with raw, am thrilled at the prospect of being able to no longer binge-eat gourmet raw, but just ENJOY it! We'll leave the idea of cooked beans and cooked veggies for the future, for now.

The first teaching is on self observation and awareness. Here are some excerpts from the website's first teaching.

It has been said that the key to change is being aware that change needs to happen. I happen to agree with that 100%. You know that you want to change your lifestyle right now from binging to being healthy and feeling good about yourself. That's why you started this program. You know that you want to change because you aren't feeling happy. Your brain is trying to tell you that change needs to happen by sending you feelings. You currently feel miserable, embarrassed, guilty, unhappy etc. and those feelings are your brain's way of telling you that change needs to happen in order to feel good. And isn't feeling good and being happy what we all strive for every day of our lives? Sure it is! Your brain is constantly sending you messages on how to make you feel happy.

There is an inherent part of your brain that will always try to find ways to make you happy but what gets in the way are the little voices in your subconscious mind that act as 'doubt' and try to get in your way of happiness. As a binger your subconscious mind, the part of your brain where your values and beliefs are stored, thinks food can make you happy; albeit temporarily. But the truth is food isn't the answer and thus your brain keeps sending you messages to make changes because it knows that you still don't feel happy.

It sounds almost simplistic doesn't it? Then why don't we listen and just make the changes? Part of the answer to that is that we think we need to make external changes. If we just restrict food, we've made an external change and stopped binging right? If we lock the door to the cabinet or don't allow ourselves to go through drive-though we've made an external change right? But these will never work because the changes are all external and have nothing to do with the reason you are binging. Another reason that we just don't make a change, is that there is an inner war going on inside our head. Half of you is saying, "stop it right this very second!" and the other half is saying, "I feel so terrible and I'm going to eat whatever I want!". Your subconscious mind is battling with your conscious mind and body.

What if we could see what was going on between the brain and the body by just simply watching it? The brain that observes itself, changes itself. What that means is that when we can take a step out of our physical body and look at ourselves from an outsider’s position we can have a different view. We are then temporarily 'observing' ourselves instead of ‘being’ ourselves. It is then that we can see the destructive behaviors, the patterns, and the lack of self-love that we berate upon ourselves.

When you've binged, have you ever felt as though you were "not really there" when it was happening. Almost as though you were a different person, in a trance, and can't remember the whole binge? I remember feeling as though it wasn't really me that I was seeing because the girl I saw was so out-of-control and spastic. I didn't realize my patterns until I tried observing myself from a different standpoint.

When I first started to practice this amazing little trick I could see myself doing those things that were destructive and for the first time I saw it without being judgmental about it. I just simply viewed it. This exercise has been around for many years and is used by psychologists all over the world. Give it a try and see if you can view yourself without judging yourself. Just view it. And don't get too hung up on the exercise if you have trouble seeing yourself from an outsiders position. Just practice and see what you can do with it. Try it for 5-10 minutes at a time a few times a day if you can. You are only looking for patterns and behaviors from a nonjudgmental position. This allows you to become aware of yourself.

The program goes on to explain HOW to self observe. If anyone is interested, i can forward that to you. I think it is HIGHLY VALUABLE and a practice i, myself, USED to do daily. Self observation is really one of the HUGE KEYS to stopping binge eating. I used to a do daily 30 minute exercise in the morning and the evening. And as one gets accustomed with this practice, then practices it daily...all day...watching themselves. Through watching ourselves, our behaviors....change by themselves, without direct effort.

Here is an exerpt from my "breakaway program" journal on the topic of self observation and awareness.

Yesterday at work i was a little more conscious of myself, observing myself a little more, and i didn't lose control as much as i normally do. I was so grateful for this and feel this is a positive step in the right direction. You know, when i am 80-10-10ing i DO this...all day...i HAVE to to stay on it...tremendous FOCUS. But, i've never really applied this 'self observation' when i'm doing poorly! I'm usually too caught up in the vortex of negative thoughts and feelings to step out of myself. But, i suppose THAT is the POINT!

The other fascinating thing here is that Roy Masters meditation (, the one i USED to do 2x daily for ALL about self observation. Through this daily self observation exercise, literally just 'watching my thoughts,' I was miraculously more able to control my behavior. Isn't it the way it is that we most often neglect the things we NEED the most??

I have really gotten out of this practice.

With diet 80-10-10 food i was able to do this successfully, be seriously focused and only eat what i 'should'. With yummy food, i have a terrible time. i get caught up in the frenzy. I hear my head think a thought about food and i follow. No matter if my belly is full or i 'know' i shouldn't be eating. It's as if i've allowed my thoughts to completely take control of my life.

i know from the Masters meditation that THOUGHTS have no power over me. In the meditation, we are taught to WATCH our thoughts without reacting.

In binge eating, i THINK about food and ACT. The thoughts, Masters teaches, are not US. They don't BELONG to us. Our responsibility is just to WATCH them, not to act or REact. You just WATCH them like you're watching a TV screen.

By self observing, i will be disconnecting this most powerful force to THINK and EAT. Eating is supposed to be a reaction to being physically HUNGRY, isn't it?????

xoxoxo michelle joy