Monday, December 26, 2011

FINDING BALANCE & GOING WITH THE FLOW!

Today is day 6 of my new "Transition To Greatness" plan. I am feeling and doing great!

I'm doing the juices Dorothy makes for me (The Angels Juicing Club at Arnold's Way) all throughout the day.

For breakfast or when I get hungier and juicing doesn't quite 'do it', I have a smoothie, or a green smoothie, or whips on occasion. Then, for lunch, later, i've been settling into no fat/no salt vegan stuff like lentils and brown rice and steamed veggies at home. Or at work, I'll have a lowfat low salt raw lunch like raw bread with raw burger and sliced tomato on top, or a big salad with raw burger on top with 1/4 of an avo (blended with water, lemon, garlic, ginger, and nutritional yeast) for dressing.

For dinner, I have been "going with the flow" which has worked out to be quite amazing!

I'll talk more about it below.

So, for the holidays and for dinners really the whole week, I have been having very small servings of regular food with a total happy fearless attitude.

They say attitude is everything. And it's true. It is.

I feel like a normal person and it's pretty amazing!

Yes, it's radically different than the approach I thought I needed to stop binge eating and lose weight, but i'm so freaking happy to be here!

I've been following my "greatness" plan throughout the day, and since I gave myself the freedom and choice to go off of it (and get right back on), i've been doing that!

You know what? It's not scary, threatening, or hard, and I'm finding it is working wonderfully!

I got on the scale this morning and I am exuberantly under 350 lbs again! I woke up Cliff to tell him! I must have lost at least 10-15 lbs, maybe even 20, with effortless effort. Man, i'm so HAPPY!

- Fat and salt free raw and cooked VEGAN MOST of the day following my plan (best for me and my prone-to-swelling legs and for my reflux)....

- Small amounts of regular food (a delight for my binge eating disorder and my obesity...because I get to enjoy food in a very controlled/organized manner with NO DEPRIVATION...and no DIETING!).

I'm tres excited. Can I really make this work? Can I overcome my binge eating...and lose weight...and have good health?

When i started the juicing, I thought i would just juice, actually, i wanted to juice for 10 months and lose all of my weight. I couldn't make it a whole day! So, I remained flexible and it morphed into a HEALTHY LIFESTYLE! Now i'm so happy to be finding a balance which has for so long felt unachievable. Maybe flooding myself with the juicing nutrients and the new mental attitude is doing something where i am able to have cooked and it not veer out of control (yet).

I'll see how it goes. If this works, i'll keep this regiment up, for good!

Obviously, i won't be getting the benefits of a fully raw or even vegan diet.

But if I choose to, perhaps my dinners will morph into veganland? Or even morph into gourmet raw? It's the most wonderful freedom....to have the freedom to do as I choose!

If i stop binge eating (so far 6 days binge free) and lose weight, all of the endless searching will have been all be worth it.

= = = = = = =

I did some writing about Christmas Day.

On Christmas day, I'd had 6 of my juices that i picked up from Dorothy, and then I ate a late lunch back home, very hungry!, a smoothie and ff and salt free vegan stuff (sweet potato, steamed vegetables, brown rice).

Lemme tell ya, when you are hungry, anything tastes good, even if it has no butter or salt on it!

Christmas dinner at our friends house was a miraculous experience.

I choose to go "with the flow" and eat from what was being served (instead of stick to my greatness plan,) and it turns out, not sticking to my plan is a part of the plan, so I NEVER feel GUILTY!!!

Over these last 5 days, i go off for dinner, I get back on breakfast and lunch, I go off for dinner, i get back on breakfast and lunch. I've fallen into a workable pattern. This is quite unlike anything i've ever done. It's not a diet with rigidity and failure. NO. The greatness plan is an ideal plan of eating I set up for myself, but i gave myself an out. Because life is not ideal, and today, I want to be free enough to just enjoy this crazy un-ideal life!!!!! Turkey and mashed potatoes and coconut cream pie may not be ideal....but they sure are GOOD!! Today I allow myself because I'm sick and tired of being sick and tired with binge eating. I eat this all when I binge and since I am through with binge eating, I am blissfully going to ENJOY BINGEFOOD now!

What was amazing was, I felt like a normal person with no compulsion for food! I was not hungry nor tempted for horsdeuvres (cheese and crackers), but i had some fruit that was set out. I ate a good lunch on purpose, so i wouldn't be starved, but there was more to it than that.

Not being tempted by horsdeuvres felt like a new experience, especially since i'm eating cooked, which I used to think was addictive. (I have come to the conclusion based on my experience, that cooked food is NOT addictive. It is HOW I approach it, with what energy and emotion i bring to it.) I am sure, also, that being satiated from juices, smoothies, and healthy vegan foods is also tampering my naturally obsessed-with-food state. As is my new attitude.

For dinner, surrounded by Cliff and dear friends and so much delicious traditional holiday food, I happily anticipated being one of the group and enjoying what was lovingly prepared, wow!

So different from all of the other holiday dinners where I was either pigging out and hating myself and then i'd binge later.....or when i would bring salad and fruit and nutspread and nutpies, stuffing myself on that, overeating, feeling deprived, and eating this way because i was "unable to control myself" on regular food.

Tonight was totally different!

My head was ABSOLUTELY FREE of eating disorder talk ("i want that but i can't have that," "if i eat that, i'll eat the whole thing," "i hate myself," "butter is evil," "i'm going to get cancer if i eat that," "i'm a fat pig," "i want to eat that whole bowl of mashed potatoes," "i can't wait to eat that turkey when no one is looking," "i'll binge when i get home," etc...).

I felt like a normal person just enjoying food. What an experience! The experience of my lifetime! What i've been WAITING for!!!! My eating disorder: the negative, fearful, critical, PERFECTIONISTIC voice that was living in me for 40+ years has gone bye bye.

Just to enjoy food....to simply enjoy food....like Nigella Lawson does...like Lidia Bastianich does... I watch these cooking shows and watch them take bites of this forbidden fattening addictive cancer causing delicious amazing food, and i say, "How do they DO that and not weigh 800 lbs? I WANT THAT!"

When the food came around, i took a small spoon of anything that appealed to me and a good serving of salad and ate slowly and paying attention and monitored my thoughts/feelings/attitude for anything fearful/negative/remorseful/regretful. I would allow NONE of that. I just kept focusing on just being HAPPY, purposefully, imposing HAPPINESS on myself, returning to HAPPINESS if it momentarily departed, and eating/doing what i ENJOYED. Did i enjoy talking to this person? Continue. Did i enjoy eating this? Continue. Happiness and Enjoyment were all that mattered.

Wow. This is IT. This is bliss.

After i finished my plate, i waited for a few mins and just checked in. I was a little nervous because i still felt hungry and I didn't know if the insatiable hole in me that wanted to swallow up everything on the table was alive or not. After a few minutes, i had some more salad and another bite or two of whatever regular food appealed to me right then...

And then it happened... It was as if the heavens parted...

...I felt the magical signal that said i'd had enough wash over me! I'd had enough! They talk about satiety and eating until your body signals you you've had enough, but in binge mode, there is NEVER enough. To have experienced "enough" (which was not even very much) eating former binge foods...was quite miraculous.

What a revelation. This is why and how normal people stop eating when they've had enough, and lose their interest in food!

Normal people don't obsess on food, don't obsess or think about what they've just eaten, ruminating and ruminating, feeling guiltier and guilter. They just enjoy! Until they've had ENOUGH!

THE NEW SKILL TO FORGET ABOUT WHAT YOU'VE EATEN IMMEDIATELY AFTER YOU'VE EATEN IT....IS HUGE! KAREN TAUGHT ME THIS. IT'S SOMETHING ECKHART TOLLE TAUGHT HER. IT'S CALLED RELEASING ATTACHMENT TO THINGS, IDEAS, DESIRES. WE JUST RELEASE. "EAT. ENJOY. FORGET."

I willed myself to enjoy the conversation and get out of my head. I wiped all memory and thoughts of what i'd eaten out of my mind.

I obsess on food no longer.

Conversation was delightful, and by the time dessert came, wow, was I happy, because I was hungry for a little! A few bites was enough of Theresa's amazing homemade coffee cake with a cup of tea, just how i like it (on occassion) with milk and sugar, what a treat. The coconut cream pie was not that coconutty and so it wasn't hard to stop eating it after one bite.

Today i eat what i enjoy and what gives me pleasure, and don't waste my calories on hating myself with what i don't enjoy. There is no more hatred, no more regret, no more guilt. So those mental states don't attract me to food I don't like or enjoy so I can beat myself up with it. THANK YOU GOD.

I enjoyed socializing and gifts afterwards and left HAPPY - no obsessing or binge eating on leftovers afterwards. I guess I don't need to get my HAPPY from food anymore. I get HAPPY from ME. Food is for HUNGRY.

Food binges START from thinking and obsessing on food. Since that is not tolerated (only HAPPY is), I never get to the point of being compelled to binge. There is a lot of THOUGHT about food FIRST before you binge.

Binge eating is a mental disorder brought about by strong emotions. Strong emotions are meant to be felt. We are meant to let them flow through us. We are not meant to eat in a state of upset. We have learned to think about food or eat food instead of feel our feelings.


_ _ _ _ _ _

Here's some other writing I did.

I'm looking better in the face, not radically, but enough that i would notice. With radical raw, all bananas or something, or with just juicing, change in weight would be much more radical. But i'm OKAY with moderate. MODERATE I can keep up for the rest of my LIFE!!!! I remind myself often that with Dr. Graham, I lost 40 lbs in one month eating only bananas, but I gained them back in a week. I am through with crash dieting.

This feels like the most incredible freedom and discipline all in one. Balance, finally. And it feels great.

xoxo michelle joy

Thursday, December 22, 2011

HAPPINESS...IS GREAT!


You cannot judge the value of a life by its quantity. It is by the joy that you are feeling. The more joyful you are, the longer you live. Let yourself relax and breathe and be free and be joyous, and romp. The optimum physical life experience is to have plenty of things that stimulate you to desire, and an awareness of the way you feel, so you're reaching for thoughts that feel good—so you're wide open, so you're tuned in, tapped in, and turned on. We promise you, the timing of your death is always chosen by you.
--- http://www.abraham-hicks.com/




Hiya! Feeling pretty jazzed! Today is my 3rd day on the ANGELS JUICING CLUB PROGRAM at Arnold's Way. (For more info, email Dorothy at: newfreedomhealingarts@gmail.com.)

I'm drinking 12 (8oz) ORGANICE JUICES, 1 every hour on the hour...for 7 days straight!!

I'm supplementing my juices with the foods on my revised TRANSITION TO GREATNESS PLAN. It's working out really WELL!

I'll tell you what has had the biggest impact on me - and it has nothing to do with food. It's allowing myself to forgive myself for "failures." Instead of beating myself up relentlessly like i usually do (and then i go binge), i'm focusing on the positive, and little bumps in the road become just that, i get over them and move on. Like last night, i took a few bites of something I made for Cliff. It was almost like a test to see if i could do it without binge eating and without feeling bad/guilty. I succeeded! When you look at the whole day, it was awesome: 12 raw organice juices, steamed veggies, beans, fresh fruit, green smoothies, a salad, and 3 tastes of "normal" food. In the whole scheme of things, it was "nothing." I'm learning that now!

And today at work, i had to make some special raw vegan food for Christmas-to go-dinners. Since i don't use recipes, i have to taste what i make. That meant i had to taste some fatty, very salty things that weren't on my GREATNESS list. The instinct to beat myself up appeared, the instinct to BINGE appeared. I noticed it, and immediately applied my new rule: TO BE HAPPY NO MATTER WHAT I EAT AND NO MATTER WHAT I DO OR DO NOT DO. The feeling to binge or feel bad....vanished! I went on with the rest of my day like nothing 'bad' had ever happened. This is SO NEW! I used to obsess on any small infraction!!

THIS INTENTION - to be HAPPY NO MATTER WHAT is exceedingly powerful.

The little kernel/seed that became binge eating has very much to do with PERFECTION. I think i was criticized very heavily as a child. Things have been flooding my memory bank the past days about how it felt to be judged so harshly as a child. I used to make dinner for the family, and my father, who would come home from a hard day at work aggrivated, was never happy with what i'd cooked. His favorite expression for how it tasted was, "Pfft, fair." I have vivid memories of those dinners and feeling like a bug that someone just squashed down with their thumb. In fact, before dinner, after i got home from school, i'd binge and fall asleep to cope with what heartbreak at dinner time. I never learned to be proud of myself for what i DID, regardless if i did it well, or not. Instead, I learned to focus on FAILURE. I felt like a failure. I learned to feel BAD about about ME for ANYTHING I did that was less than PERFECT.

Now, allowing myself to accept my imperfections....is so FREEING!

Also, rather than seeing "raw food" as the cure to what ails me, as the cure to binge eating, (i think it's a part of it, i don't think it is the answer) it is now in it's proper place. First comes my ATTITUDE/FOCUS/INTENTIONS, then comes my food choices. Oh, my god, this is so IT. Just to be HAPPY no matter WHAT. The happiness is what makes you want to make good choices because you love yourself.

When we beat ourselves up for a little blip, we only want to do WORSE. It's like we're trying to force ourselves to forgive ourselves. "Like, what will it take...how bad do i have to get to get you to notice i need love?" When things get bad enough, and we're completely out of control, we usually break down and forgive ourselves and renew our intention to do better. But why do we have to wait? Why do we have derail into self destruction to notice we need love and forgiveness....RIGHT now?

Things don't have to get any worse than they already are....if we learn to notice our 'mistakes' without judgement and immediately recognize that we no longer REACT to them by feeling bad about ourselves and we don't need to beat ourselves up and we don't need to binge to cope with it.

We learn to roll with the punches.

Attitude really IS everything.

Plus, unsalted potatoes and brown rice and cooked veggies without oil and salt don't taste that great. It's easy to just have enough to satisfy hunger. Over the past two days, it's like food has taken it's rightful place as something I do to satisfy hunger instead of something i do to entertain myself. The 12 different juices are exciting, though. I never know what i'm going to get when i open the litle cup top!

Drinking the juices is fun! Every hour i have a different flavor!

I'm doing good and i'm excited.

I decided to supplement the juice feast with food so that when the feast is over, i don't crash and burn. (My friend, Joy, who is a long time raw faster pointed out this website for me that has been quite instrumental in my decision making: http://www.michelleanslan.com/. Anslan says that cooked low fat vegan food is actually healthier than super fatty gourmet raw food. I don't know if that's true or not, but for today, I'm accepting that statement as truth FOR MYSELF based on how it feels in my body. I needed a break from salt. I've been so bloated. And fatty foods give me reflux. I'm enjoying this clean whole foods "Transition Diet" eating that she talks about.)

Here's my new amended plan, which includes more on my new mindset! Much of it was inspired by teachings from my email friend and sorta miraculous sponsor, Karen, who is reading Eckhart Tolle, and getting so much out of it and sharing it with me on a daily basis. It has been incredibly powerful. Thank you, Karen! I'm tellin' ya, this is where it's at...success starts in the MIND!

TRANSITION TO GREATNESS DIET AND MINDSET
I FOCUS ON THE POSITIVE - I LOOK AT WHAT I DID/DO RIGHT.

I INTEND TO SUCCEED AND FOCUS ON HOW I WILL ACHIEVE SUCCESS EACH MORNING AND KEEP FOCUSED ALL DAY.

I CREATE AND REPEAT POSITIVE AFFIRMATIONS FOR SUCCEESS.

I ACT "AS IF" I AM HAPPY NO MATTER WHAT - NO MATTER WHAT I EAT, NO MATTER WHAT I DO OR DON'T DO, NO MATTER WHAT!

I TRUST THAT GOD IS WORKING BEHIND THE SCENES AND WILL LEAD ME INTO A LIFE OF BLESSING!

I ASK MYSELF, "WHAT WOULD LOVE DO?" WHEN FACED WITH DILEMMAS.

I STRIVE TO DO WHAT IS BEST FOR MY HIGHEST GOOD.

I PAY ATTENTION TO FOOD, I SAVOR, I ENJOY!

I OBSERVE WHY I AM EATING WITHOUT JUDGEMENT.

I EAT WHEN I AM HUNGRY.

I FOCUS ON MY GOAL - TO WEIGH 200 LBS - i will be so LIGHT and FREE, i will have ADVANTAGE IN AUDITIONS, i will LIVE MY LIFE'S PURPOSE, i will be BEAUTIFUL, ATTRACTIVE...and FREE from this horrible WEIGHT weighing me down PHYSICALLY, SPIRITUALLY and EMOTIONALLY!

I FOCUS ON WHAT IS OPTIMAL FOR ME TO EAT.

I EXERCISE FREQUENTLY BECAUSE IT FEELS WONDERFUL, MAKES ME HEALTHIER AND LOOK BETTER!

I DRINK PLENTY OF FLUIDS BECAUSE IT MAKES MY SKIN LOOK SO NICE AND IS SO GOOD FOR MY VOICE

I TAKE VITAMINERAL GREEN AND BLUE GREEN ALGAE BECAUSE IT HELPS MY DIGESTION AND IS SO FILLED WITH CHLORYFIL

I PRAY AND ASK GOD TO HELP ME ALL DAY. I SURRENDER OFTEN.

IF I CHOOSE TO EAT NON-OPTIMAL FOODS, I SAVOR AND ENJOY, MAINTAIN A HAPPY OUTLOOK NO MATTER WHAT, AND GET RIGHT BACK ON TRACK.

OPTIMAL FOODS TO TRANSITION TO GREATNESS - SALT FREE AND OIL FREE
SALAD WITH FRUIT DRESSING
SALAD WITH RAW NUT DRESSING
FRESH VEGETABLE JUICES
FRESH FRUIT JUICES
FRUIT SMOOTHIES
GREEN SMOOTHIES
ANYTHING MADE WITH RAW VEGGIES: FRESH SALSA, VEGGIE PLATE, RAW SOUP, ETC..., ZUCCHINI SPAGHETTI AND RAW SAUCE
COOKED SQUASHES OF ANY VARIETY
COOKED GREENS OF ANY VARIETY
DR FUHRMAN SOUPS
STEAMED/COOKED PLAINTAIN/POTATOES/SWEET POTATOES
FRESH FRUIT
COOKED BEANS
STEAMED OR WATER SAUTEED VEGGIES
PLAIN BROWN RICE

xoxo michelle joy

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

TRANSITION TO GREATNESS!



This is my vision for each one of you: Imagine yourself, vibrant and healthy, two years down the line, without addiction, without health challenges, aches, or pains, and living your life’s purpose. Imagine the beauty of each day, as you wake up excited and motivated each morning, ready to live your life to the fullest. www.michelleanslan.com




Good morning, Hope you are all well. I'd love to hear from you, write me! LaSoprana@aol.com

I started the plan below yesterday and already feel like a new person. I had steamed potatoes and veggies and lentils, 2 corn on the cob, fresh strawberries, steamed plaintain and sweetpotato, nothing with salt or fat.

My eye stopped twitching. Already. (It's been twitching for 5 days. Arnold said it was due to fat buildup in my liver).

And.....I start my juicing program with Dorothy Marie today! My mother agreed to help me pay the $300 cost of 6 extra large juices/day, all different varieties, that I will pick up daily at Arnold's Way for one week! Thank you, Mommy! This juicing will really get me supercharged with vitamins and minerals and will make me feel so good!

I've decided in addition to the juices, to eat what i desire when/if i am hungry, ideally from my above list. Going on a juice fast and then ending it at McDonalds is something i am quite capable of that i caution myself against. "Proper diet and exercise are the way to permanent health," says Michelle Anslan. Amen to that.

After the week of imbibing Dorothy's marvelous daily juices and eating low fat whole foods, i'll be supercharged and motivated to continue on my road to health, and will be motivated to make juice for myself at home!

THE ANGELS JUICING CLUB AT ARNOLD'S WAY: If you're interested in beginning a juicing program but need a kick start and are local to Lansdale, PA, Dorothy Marie is ready and waiting to make YOU 6 daily juices a day, too!

Send her an email at:
newfreedomhealingarts@gmail.com

I came up with the following plan, which was inspired by the transition diet on http://www.michelleanslan.com/. My sweet and darling friend, Joy, who writes to me daily, directed my attention there. Michelle Anslan is a longterm raw vegan frugivore, who shuns salt and fat. Becoming a frugivore was never an attraction, but I found great wisdom in her suggestions on transitioning to raw: www.michelleanslan.com/transitioning.html. Anslan also writes a great deal about eating disorders and the quick fixes and pitfalls that many people struggling with raw / and eating disorders turn to. Anslan's point of view was convincing enough. I decided to create/follow a transition diet similar to the one she prescribes.

I called it MY TRANSITION TO GREATNESS DIET AND MINDSET.

On the plan, i do the following to TRANSITION TO GREATNESS!:
I FOCUS ON GRATITUDE AND ON MY MANY BLESSINGS!

I FOCUS ON THE POSITIVE - I GIVE NO THOUGHT TO MISTAKES/FAILURE. I PICK MYSELF BACK ON AND GET RIGHT BACK ON TRACK.

I SET MY MIND TO INTEND TO SUCCEED ALL DAY!

I CREATE AND REPEAT POSITIVE AFFIRMATIONS FOR SUCCEESS!

I ACT "AS IF" I AM HAPPY NO MATTER WHAT - NO MATTER WHAT I EAT, NO MATTER WHAT I DO NOT DO, NO MATTER WHAT I DO OR OTHERS DO TO ME. HAPPINESS IS INDEPENDANT OF WHAT I EAT!

I TRUST THAT GOD IS WORKING BEHIND THE SCENES AND WILL LEAD ME INTO A LIFE OF BLESSING!

I ASK MYSELF, "WHAT WOULD LOVE DO?" WHEN FACED WITH DILEMMAS. I PAUSE AND WAIT FOR AN ANSWER.

I INTEND TO DO WHAT IS BEST FOR MY HIGHEST GOOD. I AM WORTH IT! GOD HAS GREAT PLANS FOR ME!

I PAY ATTENTION TO FOOD, I SAVOR, I ENJOY, I EAT WHAT I DESIRE! I OBSERVE WHAT AND WHY I AM EATING.

I EAT WHEN I AM HUNGRY

I FOCUS ON MY GOAL - TO WEIGH 200 LBS SO THAT I CAN MOVE WITH GRACE AND EASE, SO THAT I WILL HAVE NO OBSTACLES IN SINGING AUDITIONS/PROFESSIONAL OPERA JOBS, SO I LOOK ATTRACTIVE AND MARKETABLEI INTEND TO CURE MY REFLUX LARYNGITIS WITH THIS LOW FAT DIET

I FOCUS ON WHAT IS OPTIMAL FOR ME TO EAT AND NOT ON WHAT IS NOT

I EXERCISE FREQUENTLY AND WILLINGLY BECAUSE IT FEELS WONDERFUL, MAKES ME HEALTHIER AND I LOOK SO MUCH BETTER!

I DRINK PLENTY OF WATER BECAUSE IT MAKES MY SKIN LOOK SO NICE AND IS SO GOOD FOR MY VOICE

I TAKE VITAMINERAL GREEN AND BLUE GREEN ALGAE BECAUSE IT HELPS MY DIGESTION AND IS SO FILLED WITH CHLORYFIL

I PRAY AND ASK GOD TO HELP ME ALL DAY. I SURRENDER OFTEN.

IF I CHOOSE TO EAT NON-OPTIMAL FOODS, I SAVOR AND ENJOY, AND GET RIGHT BACK ON TRACK.

OPTIMAL FOODS TO TRANSITION TO GREATNESS - SALT FREE AND OIL FREE
+SALAD WITH FRUIT DRESSING
+SALAD WITH RAW NUT DRESSING
+FRESH VEGETABLE JUICES
+FRESH FRUIT JUICES
+FRESH FRUIT
+FRUIT SMOOTHIES
+GREEN SMOOTHIES
+ANYTHING MADE WITH RAW VEGGIES: FRESH SALSA, VEGGIE PLATE, RAW SOUP, ZUCCHINI SPAGHETTI AND RAW SAUCE, etc...
+COOKED SQUASHES OF ANY VARIETY (butternut, spaghetti, etc...)
+COOKED GREENS OF ANY VARIETY
+DR FUHRMAN SOUPS
+STEAMED/COOKED PLAINTAIN/POTATOES/SWEET POTATOES
+COOKED BEANS
+STEAMED OR WATER SAUTEED VEGGIES
+PLAIN BROWN RICE

_ _ _ _ _


Wishing you a blessed day!
xoxo michelle joy

Sunday, December 18, 2011

THE MAGICAL STORY OF WONDER OF YOUR OWN LIFE

So, i've been telling you that i get these daily emails. They are unbelievably powerful. To open up email and to be uplifted immediately is such a gift and a blessing.

Here is the one I got today from a website called Abraham-Hicks. My fabulous friend, Joy, told me about it and I signed up for it. I'm so glad i did. Here goes:

Start telling a better-feeling story about the things that are important to you. Do not write your story like a factual documentary, weighing all the pros and cons of your experience, but instead tell the uplifting, fanciful, magical story of the wonder of your own life and watch what happens. It will feel like magic as your life begins to transform right before yours eyes, but it is not by magic. It is by the power of the Laws of the Universe and your deliberate alignment with those Laws.
--- Abraham http://www.abraham-hicks.com/

So, this is exactly where i've been at. I mean, Pure Raw Joy used to be about staying raw, at first, and then, when i couldn't get back on raw, it was about how badly I was doing with blow by blow details and lots of hopeless out of control depressed discouraged feelings.

That's when i stopped writing, because i realized eventually, it wasn't helping me get any better to talk about how badly i was doing.

So, now, in my life, I've changed the focus from talking about and focusing on my woes with food...t0 focusing on changing my mental state and my language. My friend, Karen, who reads Eckhart Tolle has been so instrumental in helping me achieve this new focus. Thank you, Karen!

It seems to be helping, because even though my diet is not all raw, I am much happier! And a happier person can change, not one who feels she can't accomplish anything because nothing is within her control.

For a good example of how I'm changing my language and the impact it has, on friday at Arnold's Way, a former student, who was in one of my raw diet classes and who is normal weight but who has difficulty with out of control eating too, came up to me as I was making food, as we have met and chatted many times before, and she was telling me about all of the 'bad foods' she can't stop eating and I was listening, but in a different way.

I was now focused, for myself, on staying positive, only focusing on the positive things and do, and not lamenting over every negative thing I do. To hear her description of what was going on made me realize the issue is not really about the cookies she can't stop eating, the issue is really about how she views the cookies she can't stop eating. Do we obsess and focus on the negative? Or do we focus our minds on what we want and the good things we do? Which way works to produce success???

When she asked how i was, she expected me, as usual, to commisserate and have a similar sob story about my horrible struggles and lost battles with food, because it's obvious from my weight gain that i'm not losing weight, but i said to her:

"You know what? i'm finding that my attitude, and especially my language make all of the difference. I'm wanting to do well. That's my answer to how I am! And I'm focusing on the positive. I find that talking about everything i do wrong doesn't help change occur, it just makes me want to continue to do worse. Instead, I'm finding that setting intentions for what i want and focusing on those intentions really powerfully, really set my mind on them, really does seem to help me to create positivity and change."

I think she was really taken aback as it certainly wasn't the answer she was expecting. And other people heard, Arnold and Chloe and it made people happy and uplifted to hear such an answer. "You go, girl!" When we're positive, people root for us. When we're dragging in mud, telling everyone about it, they're all, like, "Uh, see ya later."

What was funny to me was SHE goes to all of those "The Secret" type seminars and used to say that stuff to ME when i was teaching the raw diet class!! It was just a really funny role reversal and ironic because i was the really fat one saying it, and she was the thin one not focusing on the positive.

She once said, "You know, it doesn't matter if you have 5 lbs to lose or 100, it can feel the same."

Anyway, in changing my attitude and language, i've been having good success during my imperfect days, which I've been latching onto, and then it helps me want to do better the next day, you know? For instance, in NYC on Wednesday, I walked 66 blocks. I also ate a cheeseburger, which would usually send me into a tailspin. Instead, I just keep getting back up, renewing my intentions, so i'm able to get back on track so much quicker. Even if i keep screwing up again. I was raw 3/4 of the day on both Thurs and Friday. Still, I bought a new bottle of vitamineral green. I started to take a blue green algae last night. And last night with Cliff, we water-walked together in my parents' clubhouse pool for 40 mins together. It was bliss! I didn't binge yesterday but also didn't eat all raw.

What i'm trying to explain is - by changing my attitude/focus, i'm recovering from setbacks much much quicker. Soon, if i keep this up, setbacks will be like nothing. And binge eating will be GONE. THIS IS MY INTENTION.

On Thursday night, something really great happened. I didn't think i could sing well. i was exhausted, i'd worked all day. I didn't have a great warm up. I just kept intending to do well and kept surrendering to God. "Help me, Lord. Help me!"

I had probably the BEST singing experience I've had since working again with Badiene. It was as if everything just FINALLY came together with my singing technique and I saw the light. I sang the Bach Cantata BWV 151 with the orchestra and the flutest said afterwards, "You are fantastic!" I am going to surrender to God alot more. He can help make my intentions reality!

It was interesting to note that while singing it was alot of WORK to focus on using my correct support and keeping my throat open (as I'm learning), but the hard work of singing correctly paid off . I felt like I could make any adjustment to the sound I wanted, quieter, diminuendo, crescendo. My voice was within my control.

Along the same lines, I'm finding that the more and more I set intentions and focus on the positive, the more my eating is in control.

Yesterday at my moms, i could have easily binged had i wanted to. Which i often do.

Yesterday I set an intention to eat what i wanted normally. And I did. I stayed focused and paid attention with each bite. I didn't LIKE that chicken wing. I wasn't going to eat another. It was new.

It's almost like miraculous how it happens.

So, I feel hopeful for the future.

Yes, intellectually, i "know" raw is the healthiest for me. But emotionally, i'm needing to learn this important flexibility that "food does not define me" and that "food does not control me." In learning that "I" control my attitude, "I" control my actions, "I" control my behavior, "I" control food, I'm making significant inner spiritual changes that feel really really important.

I talked the other day about how if we fall from our best intentions, we just have to keep renewing our intention and pick ourselves back up again and get back on track. So i had my smoothie this morning.

Maybe we have to do that 1x a day or maybe 25x a day. I think it's the most important thing right now for me to learn.

This is something i never learned as a serial yo yo dieter. With diets, I would make one false infraction and give up completely. This was the seed that birthed binge eating that I'm working on eradicating today.

_ _ _ _

So, I invite you to read and reread that little Abraham-Hicks statement above and give thought to sharing less of the blow by blow sob story of your life, but to start creating within your own life "the magial story of wonder." Start focusing on the positive. Start monitoring and changing your language to reflect a more positive you.

Let's transform our lives togeher in this way!

xoxo michelle joy

Friday, December 16, 2011

THE ANGELS JUICING CLUB at Arnold's Way!



















Hi Folks,

I'm not sure if I can swing the financials to go to Colorodo, so until I am sure, i'll be joining this juice feast that Dorothy Marie is now offering at Arnold's Way!!! If you'd like to join me, that would be awesome! We can support each other!

_ _ _ _ _ _

The Angels Juicing Club

Make YOU and YOUR HEALTH YOUR TOP PRIORITY...! Join the "The Angels Juicing Club!"



The "Angel’s JUICING Club" is a new club dedicated to making YOU and YOUR health your top priority by JUICE FEASTING! Dorothy Marie and her 'Super Angel Juicer' will provide you with enough juices for a whole day, every day, for an entire week, to cleanse and rejuvenate. Lose weight! Regain energy! Dorothy will lead you to success with classes to help you get ready to juice for the week, and she’ll help keep you motivated and on track with daily support (emails/phone calls). After your juice feast, she’ll train you in how to juice at home, and educate you on the benefits of juicing so you can make juicing a lifelong habit! Dorothy Marie will make sure you have everything you need to succeed on the juice feast to transform you life! Dorothy lost over 30 lbs juicing, and never feels better than when she is imbibing the health restoring Elixir of fresh juice! See what juicing can do for YOU! And see Dorothy's Success with Juicing and Health on Arnold's Way You Tube Videos!




So, Join the “New Years Revolution” at Arnold's Way!




$300.00 Per Week!

Per week, you will enjoy:
- SIX (16 oz) Fresh Organic Juices DAILY, individually designed for your well being. Pick up daily from Arnold’s Way (very early A.M. available) (or pick up the evening before). Or..... inquire about DAILY DELIVERY!

Come to the introductory meetings on Tuesday, Dec. 20th or 27th or January 4th. And if you join the Angels Juicing Club, these weekly supportive, educational, instructional meetings will continue to be offered on an ongoing basis - every TUESDAY. These meetings will keep you on track with your new lifestyle, offer encouragement, tips, direction, instruction, support. Choose the morning or the evening session. Continue coming to class after your juice feast, too!

*Tuesday, December 20, 2011
8:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. / or 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.

*Tuesday, December 27, 2011
8:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. / or 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.

*Tuesday, January 4, 2011
8:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. / or 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.

Do a 1 Week juice feast....a 2 week juice feast......or how about a 3 or 4 week juice feast???? Juice only....or supplement with healthy food at home....

SIGN UP TODAY! CALL ARNOLD'S WAY (http://www.arnoldsway.com/)



215-361-0116

BONUS! All "Angel" Participants receive 10% Off all Equipment at Arnold's Way: (Juicers, Spaghetti Machines, Rebounders, etc...), plus 10% off of Arnold's classes, and 15% off of all produce!!

*ASK ABOUT HAVING YOUR FRESH ORGANIC JUICE DELIVERED DAILY!

Questions? Contact Dorothy at newfreedomhealingarts@gmail.com

_ _ _ _ _

Whattaya think? Let's do it!

xoxo michelle joy

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

FAILURE IS NOT FINAL and 2012 - A MAGICAL YEAR!

Good morning, fine folks,

How are you all doing? Please say HI when you can.

How am I....?

I'm wanting to do better. I ate all raw for 3/4 of the day yesterday. I'd like to make it an entire day today, and if i can eat salt free, my body would be happier. Other than that, i'm wanting to make an entire life change. Gotta keep focusing.

These two messages I'm sharing with you, "Failure is not final," and "2012, a magical year," feel very powerful to me and are a help to keep focused on success. The first message reminds us, again, that we have to never give up trying, and just sluff off mistakes, failures, and press on to focusing on what we want in the future and trusting in God and in faith for it. The second message helps remind us that we need to set powerful intentions and use language that is only positive and focuses not on "what is," but on "what we want." For example, people at work asked me how i am doing yesterday. My instant instinct is to give details (describe "what is:" i can't stop eating, i'm fatter, i'm hopeless.) Instead, I answered, "I'm focusing on the positive, I'm fabulous!" It made me and everyone else smile, and you know what? It makes you feel and DO better when you talk like that. Towards the end of the day, I was tired and upset about something and I lost my focus. My intention is to keep focused today.

Well, here goes. I hope these messages resonate with you. I'm wishing you a very blessed day. Say HI when you can.

TODAY’S SCRIPTURE
“...But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead”(Phillipians 3:13, NIV)

TODAY’S WORD from Joel and Victoria
Are you down on yourself today because of past mistakes you’ve made or because you’re not where you want to be in life? God knows every poor choice, every difficulty, every wrong turn you may have made, and He’s already planned your comeback! In scripture, Jonah took a detour, so to speak. It took him a little bit longer, but because he called out to God, because he believed, God not only rescued him, but God got him to his final destination.
Friend, know today that failure is not final. God always has the final say. Mistakes don’t have to keep you from your destiny. God’s plan can override every setback. Your world may be in turmoil today in a relationship, in your finances or health. But know this: not only will God rescue you; He will set your feet on a rock and lead you to your final destination in life. Remember, the promise He placed on the inside of you didn’t go away because you had some personal failures. No, that failure is only temporarym but His Word remains forever! Keep hoping, keep believing because He will move you into the blessing and victory He has prepared for you!

A PRAYER FOR TODAY
Father God, thank You for Your hand of victory and blessing that is on my life. Today, I shake off the past, I shake off failure, I shake off poor choices and trust that You are restoring me and leading me into the plan You have for me in Jesus’ name. Amen!
— Joel & Victoria Osteen

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

A Secret Scrolls message from Rhonda Byrne
Creator of The Secret and The Power

You can make 2012 the best year of your life! And you can do it very easily, right now. All you have to do is set the most powerful intention you can ever set in your life, which is that you will focus only on what you want, think only about what you want, and talk only about what you want. Decide right now that anytime you find yourself thinking or talking about what you don't want, you will stop and demand of yourself, "What is it that I want?" And with all your might, with all your strength, with all your willpower - you will focus on what you want!

This one intention, repeated daily until the New Year and reinforced through 2012, will ensure that you make 2012 the year that your dreams came true, and the greatest year of your life!
Happy holidays, and a very, very Happy New Year! May the joy be with you!


Rhonda Byrne, The Secret... bringing joy to billions

xoxo michelle joy

BOUNCE BACK, BABY!



I get these awesome daily emails from Joel Osteen Ministries at http://www.joelosteen.com/. Yes, I'm Jewish. But I embrace these Christian messages like they are water to the thirsty.

Quite simply put, I just cannot get enough of Joel Osteen. He is infinitely adorable, wise and positive, funny, profound, touching. He is the epitome of the positive preacher. He is the antithesis of the fire-and-brimstone preacher. He fills you with the JOY and wonder of God and you can't help but smile the entire time he preaches.

I watch Joel on the local Christian channel. I have his books, his daily devotionals, and he ministers to me daily in these daily email messages. Today's message, which I've shared with you below, was particularly timely and meaningful for me. I've been losing the battle with food and weight. Ah, well. Sometimes before you make a big change, you allow things to get much worse.

When things stay worse, day after day, I can get really, really discouraged, and I get to feeling like i just want to give up.

But I'm not giving up. i'll wake up tomorrow, it'll be a new day. I'll go to work at Arnold's Way, despite having eaten a hamburger and chicken and chocolate milk and Dunkin' Donut's muffins today. (I did however have an awesome singing lesson and I walked my butt off in NYC, so the day was not a total loss).

I have an opportunity of a new day tomorrow. I have the opportunity of a new perspective...right NOW! I can choose health! I'm doing a positive blog. And I can walk in the morning. Even if just for 5 minutes. I can drink more water, tonight and tomorrow. I can eat healthy light raw foods all day tomorrow. I can make a new start, just like that. Just like that. Just like that. Just like that. With every second that ticks by, there's a new opportunity to choose differently, to choose better.

I think Joel and Victoria's message below is a message we can never hear too often. This was a real blessing for me, and I share it with you in the hopes that it is a blessing for you!

TODAY’S SCRIPTURE
“For though a righteous man falls seven times, he rises again...”
(Proverbs 24:16, NIV)

TODAY’S WORD from Joel and Victoria
Life is full of things that try to push us down. We all face disappointments and setbacks. Maybe you received some bad news about your health or perhaps a relationship didn’t work out. That was a setback. It’s easy to get discouraged or lose your enthusiasm or even be tempted to just settle where you are. But if we’re going to see God’s best, we have to have a “bounce back” mentality. That means when you get knocked down, you don’t stay down. You get back up again. You have to know that every time adversity comes against you, it’s a setup for a comeback!

Remember, as a believer in Jesus, the same power that raised Christ from the dead lives on the inside of you. There is no challenge too difficult, no obstacle too high, no sickness, no disappointment, no person, nothing that can keep you from your God-given destiny. If you stay in faith, then God will turn what was meant to be a stumbling block into a stepping stone, and you’ll move forward in strength, full of faith and victory!

A PRAYER FOR TODAY
Father in heaven, thank You for setting me up for success in everything I do. I choose to trust and rely on You knowing that Your plans are for my good. I know my best days are ahead of me and look ahead to the blessings You have in store for me in Jesus’ name. Amen.
— Joel & Victoria Osteen

Here is Joel Osteen giving a similar and very inspirational message from the pulpit. If this doesn't inpire you, i don't know what will! Man, God is so good and Joel Osteen is a blessed messenger. Be like a palm tree...and get right back up again....!! Let's all be bounceback people!
http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=gTGsYNUfdgs#!



xoxox michelle joy

Monday, December 12, 2011

DON'T EVER GIVE UP!

I've been bartering with my singing teacher, Badiene. And while filing some music for her, I ran across a song called, DON'T EVER GIVE UP. It seemed like a lightening bolt went through me when i saw the title and I quickly read the goosebump inducing lyrics. The song felt like a divinely inspired message...to me. I promised myself to write down the lyrics, they were so meaningful, and I'm blessed to share them with you.

"Don't Ever Give Up" is a song written for school children to perform. It just so happens there is a short clip of 1/2 of the song on a Kindergarten website, which i've attached at the bottom of the lyrics.

This song brings tears to my eyes and reminds me that life...is choice. Diet...is choice. Each meal or binge...is choice. Raw? Cooked? It's all in my choice. As is my attitude. It's all my choice!

I hope this message of choice and to never give up will be inspiring and uplifting to you, too!!




DON'T EVER GIVE UP by Teresa Jennings

All of your life
You will have many choices
How you will be
And what you will do
That's just the point,
It's your life, it's your choice
Trust in yourself
And your faith will show through.

Don't ever give up.
Don't ever lose the dreams
that you dream everyday.

Sometimes it's tough
And you have many problems.
How you will cope
Is all up to you.
Look deep inside.
It's your life.
It's your choice.

You can believe
And your light
Will shine through.

Don't ever lose heart.
Know who you are.
Live your own life
Your way, your way.

Don't ever give up!

http://www.musick8.com/html/current_tune.php?numbering=33&songorder=1

_ _ _ _



I also started to get daily emails from the Abraham-Hicks website, recommended to me by a friend (who happens to be named JOY, I mean, is that awesome???). Below is one of their daily email messages that shares a similar concept - that our behaviors are very much in our control, even if we don't think they are, they are. In other words, wellness/sickness - it's our choice. If we change our mindset, our attitude, our thoughts, our mood, we can very much change our behaviors.

Wellness that is being allowed—or the wellness that is being denied—is all about the mindset, the mood, the attitude, the practiced thoughts. There is not one exception, in any human or beast; because, you can patch them up again and again, and they will just find another way of reverting back to the natural rhythm of their mind. Treating the body really is about treating the mind. It is all psychosomatic. Every bit of it, no exceptions.
--- Abraham


http://www.abraham-hicks.com/lawofattractionsource/index.php

xoxo michelle joy

Thursday, December 8, 2011

I MAY BE GOING TO A RAW RETREAT IN COLORODO FOR TWO WEEKS!!!!! WANNA COME?




Well, folks, though i may talk up cooked food really good, i still can't seem to get it together. I'm struggling everyday. Well, i'm spinning my wheels, really. Spinning fast and getting nowhere.

I got an email today from my friends Meredith and Dustin, whom I've spoken about before on many occassions. They are INCREDIBLE!!

Meredith is an amazing raw chef, vegan cake baker, raw food cookbook author, doll artist, mural artist and all around inspiration - http://www.therawseed.com/.

Dustin is an amazing tattoo and mural artist and amazing artist, in general http://www.dustinkellogg.com/, who just so happened to have transformed himself on raw food...like 100 pounds worth!

These two are seriously in the ZONE and are always manifesting something incredible in their lives. They AMAZE me~~~!!! They are now (by now) long term raw foodists, live on a RAW BUS and now are running RAW RETREATS in Colorodo!

I got this email today, below, and we've since chatted on facebook!!

p.s. If you would like to join me at the retreat (some details below in the email), please email me for more information: LaSoprana@aol.com . I have since learned that flight to Denver (after New Years) is quite reasonable, about $300/round trip from Philadephia, and the retreat is about $400 for a 4 day raw retreat (food/classes/room and board in heated farmhouse w/fireplace all included) with guaranteed the MOST amazing raw food you have EVER eaten made by Meredith!

_ _ _ _

"MICHELLE!!!! Hello LOVELY!!!!!!
You have been in my thoughts & conversations a lot lately! I'm always bragging about your chef-ess skills :O)

I got your e-mail that you sent out several weeks ago and just now had a clear brain to sit down and respond.

I have known, since I met you, that you've been struggling. We've had countless conversations, e-mail exchanges, facebook chats, but still I've felt like there is a piece to this puzzle that goes much much deeper.

You've been so open and honest, this puts you in a wonderful space to change! Many people struggle with denial of their situation, you are open about your binge eating, weight loss and weight gain.

You've said it many times, you had the best results eating raw while at OHI, surrounded by supportive individuals in an active environment. Dustin and I have witnessed you try "the experts" programs, only to see you feeling frustrated, angry, and broke.

In the past I've felt unsure of how I can help you. I have so many useful tools but ultimately, I've felt like you need a full overhaul, a HUGE shift in schedule.

I always knew I could create you delicious food and juices that will help you feel satisfied, but if you aren't surrounded by constant inspiration and support it would be so hard for you to heal, move past the binge eating, and come into your highest self.

BUT!!!!! BUT!!!!! BUT!!!!! I finally CAN offer you a place to come, heal, lose weight, find support, and eat delicious raw food!!!!!! Dustin and I have been living IN THE BUS at a holistic healing retreat center for the past 4 months. We are here to stay and love it! We've put a wood burning stove IN Bleu Bee and we are staying toasty warm this winter. Last night we got down to negative 10 degrees... but the bus stayed at 95 degrees~!!

Cat & Cory are our friend's who own Sunshine Mountain Lodge in Colorado, www.sunshinemountainlodge.com where we now live. We're about 20 minutes from Estes Park and Rocky Mountain National Park - an hour and a half from the Denver Airport. The lodge has 6 private cabins, a HUGE main cabin with a gathering room and large kitchen where we cook and un-cook meals, teach classes, and host rawlucks. I am the "official" on-site raw chef but Cat is an incredible raw chef as well - she's modest about it but her raw food is pretty bad ass! We host all types of retreats, including raw retreats, yoga retreats, and holistic healing retreats.

The lodge FEELS like home, it's such a perfect space for relaxation, rejuvenation, and healing. It literally took me two days to feel "at home" there, I sleep like a baby because it's so peaceful and quiet. Not to mention, we are surrounded by animals like Elk, Moose, Fox, Bears, Big Horned Sheep. There is hiking to do EVERYWHERE, we are literally in the mountains surrounded by fresh air. Even though we are "in" the mountains, the lodge is located on a major state highway so our roads are always safely plowed and we have a lot of "foot traffic." We are away from the big city but not too isolated, the perfect balance.

We are re-doing our price lists, literally as we speak, but i KNOW we can work with your budget and help get you on track. You will be in a space, surrounded by supportive individuals. You can help around the lodge, we could even get some classes going while you are here so you can flex your skills. We host monthly rawlucks, movie nights, and raw dinner nights. These events attract a wide variety of individuals of all ages, backgrounds, shapes and sizes. We have people who are healthy and thriving... people who are extremely ill.. kids, grandparents... all ages and backgrounds. I don't have a fancy PhD BUT I have experience, drive, and a passion for delicious food. I've helped so many people overcome weight challenges, emotional challenges. I really feel the KEY is a WHOLE-listic approach. Combining all areas of life, addressing all areas of life, is how you can achieve overall wellness and balance.

You have such a FIRE to you, that's what I've always loved about you. You have a spark that shines clear as day, your singing in breathtaking, your food is divine.. you are a powerful, powerful woman! It's time for your outside to manifest into what you want! You can do this, we (at the lodge) can help!This is a personal invitation, from me and the lodge to you. Please please please put a lot of thought into this. Coming to the lodge for an extended stay will be a step that will change your life forever, guaranteed. You already know me and Dustin, we're a piece of home.. away from home! I will e-mail you prices shortly, but for now, start thinking about if this is something you are ready to do and want to do. Your e-mail asked for prayers, guidance and help. I love you very much and want you to thrive and feel alive. This is how I can offer to help. I can offer you a space to heal at our holistic healing lodge, what are the chances of this? A friend who is working side by side with the owners of a retreat center to host raw/healing retreats and events?! Please take advantage of this opportunity!!Let me know if I can answer any questions you may have. Please let me know how you are doing and feeling. I would love to see you and hear from you soon. Ill be in touch with information on pricing for extended stays & short-term stays.

Much LOVE!
xoxoxoxox

Meredith--"
Padmapani Little Sky (Meredith Frantz)
www.therawseed.com www.poppyseedtree.com




"Don't ask what the world needs. Ask what makes you come alive, and go do it. Because what the world needs is people who have come alive."-Howard Thurman

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

GENEEN ROTH'S GUIDELINES TO EATING

In an excerpt from "Women, Food, and God," Geneen Roth shares seven guidelines to eating more consciously.

1. Eat when you are hungry. (Truly hungry. Body hungry, not mind or mouth hunger.)

2. Eat sitting down in a calm environment. This does not include the car.

3. Eat without distractions. Distractions include radio, television, newspaper, books, intense or anxiety producing conversation and music.

4. Eat only what your body wants. (Big difference from what your MIND wants!)

5. Eat until you are satisfied. (This is different than full).

6. Eat (with the intention of being) in full view of others.

7. Eat with enjoyment, gusto and pleasure.



Affirmations for Compulsive Overeaters

1. My worth as a person is not diminished in any way by my body size or my eating patterns.

2. I will love myself no matter what my eating patterns are.

3. I will judge my days not by what or how much I eat, but by the accomplishments I have made and the love I have given.

4. My life is a gift, and I will not let my enjoyment of it be diminished by feeling guilty over my body size or how much I eat.

5. I am finished blaming others, situations, and myself for the way I eat. I will take action minute-by-minute, hour-by-hour, and day-by-day until I can eat normally again.

6. Compulsive overeating is a temporary condition in my life.

7. There is a normal eater within me. I will let her/him take over my life more and more each day as I am ready.

8. I can imagine a life without being a compulsive overeater.

9. When I feel stressed, I will close my eyes and picture how my all-powerful, normal eater would handle the situation.

10. I believe I will be a normal eater again. I know I will be a normal eater again!


HUNGER SCALE

10. Stuffed to the point of feeling sick

9. Very uncomfortably full, clothes really tight

8. Uncomfortably full, stuffed

7. Very full, feel you have overeaten

6. Comfortably full, satisfied

5. Comfortable, neither hungry or full

4. Beginning signals of hunger

Hunger urge comes every 2-5 minutes for just a moment. Try to go back to what you were doing, it may go away. It may be more “I see it so I want it”, or psychological eating.

3. Hungry, ready to eat

Hunger urge lasts longer, eat here, you need it physiologically. You’re body needs fuel.

2. Very hungry, unable to concentrate

Definitely need to eat here, if you go much longer it’ll be hard to stop.

1. Starving, dizzy, crabby, headache

When you wait this long, you may set yourself up for overeating because you’re too hungry.

* Learn to eat when your body feels a 2 or 3
* Try to match your physiological hunger and stop around a 5-6


Courtesy of
http://consciouseaters.webs.com/

xoxox michelle joy

Monday, December 5, 2011

THE LAMBOURGINI and THE GOLDEN NUGGETS

Hello there, Blogger Fans,

Well, time for an update.

I was raw for a week when I started re-blogging, and the last week has been a week of experimentation with cooked and raw. I have two mostly raw email "sponsors" of sorts that i write my food to every day. I fall down, i get back up. It's been like that for days now. This is new. It's not complete and utter deterioration nor raw perfection. It is an expression of a deep yearning for balance.

I did some writing last night after my performance of Haendel's Messiah pertaining to where i've been at in my mind with food that i'd like to share.

_ _ _

I think i had a very good day, but i had cooked food, and it's not really jiving that great with my reflux. Because of singing jobs i need to be taking reflux meds right now and i left mine at home (we're at my parents) so i had to take one of my mom's reflux pills and it doesn't work as well as mine. I'm belching and tasting dinner. (thanks for sharing, right?)

So, to make a SHORT story LOOOONG, I was getting ready for the Messiah performance this morning and wasn't hungry at all, but just as a precaution, ate 3 small bananas and 2 dates so i could survive singing for almost 3 hours. Good thing i did. And when the performance was over at 6pm, i was starved. We were in the neighborhood of one of our favorite Russian restaurants. So good and so cheap, and so hungry, i looked forward to going there. I got a peice of fish, very simple mashed potatoes and grilled veggies and had a peice and a half of their amazing bread and butter. I savored every morsel.

I don't think anything could have been more delish. Though, i recognize that raw food definitely doesn't "come up on me" like some cooked meals can. (Ah, well, probably due to the mis-combined cooked meal.)

Nevertheless, I felt very liberal and entitled at the restaurant, and thought geez, I barely ate all day and here it is dinnertime and i made it and I did good singing and I am damn well going to enjoy this treat!

After i ate, i thought, "Geez, if i could just eat like this, 1 meal per day, i'd enjoy food so much more and i would lose weight, as long as the meal wouldn't be much over 2,000 cals!"

It seems like every day is a new "place" with food. I'd committed to go back to 100% raw, but i find myself dropping off every day. After a few days of this, one figures, why not just "accept?"

With my 1 meal yesterday, i thought, "could i make something like this work? something healthy and raw in the morning and a healthy cooked meal for dinner?"

Why even classify it and put it in a box? Why not just let it be, let it exist as an experience and just look at it and learn.


I never know if i'm practicing moderation, which is such a persistent goal of mine, or if i'm just giving into being a cooked food addict. Something in me is fighting to not view myself as a cooked food addict. Like, what is so terrible about enjoying some bread and butter. It is so elemental. People have been eating bread for centuries. And fish. And vegetables. Some people pride themselves that eating that way keeps them very healthy. Some days i don't want to look at a glorious meal like that as "bad." God forbid. It's so good!

Being truly hungry, i really really really enjoyed and savored my meal ('ala' the teachings of Eating Disorder Author, Geneen Roth). Well, speaking of her, she would have said i did well tonight. (Ask arnold and he would say i ate fish urine and glue, haha).

Anyway, my body agrees more with raw, i know this, so i am not abandoning raw, by ANY means. I'm just watching. I'm living in the moment.

Yes, i become very ashamed and convicted when my coochie-coo smells when i eat cooked food and it doesn't smell when i don't. The problem is my REACTION to this. Then i feel guilty and immediately frightened and i want to binge - a message reaches my brain that says YOU ARE BAD, YOU DID WRONG and then i have the binge impulse and i want to stuff my face with every thing i forbid myself.

But why would my head tell me to do MORE of what i felt was bad for me if it were really so bad for me....as punishment? In a way, I often think my binges are TRYING DESPERATELY to teach me, to force me to just accept and enjoy food, in the moment, like you're supposed to. "You don't have to DO this to yourself. You can just enjoy it as a meal like a normal person." Like, in my twisted eating disorder state, it is okay to beat myself to a pulp and wreck and destroy my voice with any cooked foods i love/crave/forbid myself, but to eat binge foods as a meal and enjoy it is so BAD? Sometimes i think my head WANTS me to eat cooked "normally" to prove to myself once and for all that i CAN. I received pleasure from it in the moment so why afterwards do i judge myself so harshly for something that was a pleasurable experience for me, as well as for most of the planet? Am i trying to tell myself i don't deserve pleasure? Can the pleasure i receive from a cooked meal - eaten in control - be GOOD for me? Sometimes i think it is.

The problem with my body's response to it afterwards seems like a separate issue. Learning to enjoy "bad" food feels important for some reason. Anorexics in recovery can probably relate. They think all food is going to kill them. When they start to allow themselves to indulge and actually ENJOY food they feared, it must be as frightening / liberating for them as it is for me. I certainly allow myself to enjoy destructive binges, but to allow myself to enjoy a simple relatively healthy meal? Why is that so hard? And then to have that be an isolated event that does not tumble out of control? It feels like an important accomplishment. I thought that just to have one meal yesterday, and make it a special meal out, was such a treat to give myself. When i binge i may be "enjoying" food, but it's a secret and hidden and shamefilled frenzy of out of control behavior. I don't really savor the food and never listen to when i am full. I listen to a voice in my head that directs me to go on and on and on and on to eat the next and the next and the next thing. I am disconnected from my body when i binge. My disordered mind has taken over. There is never enough to fill me.

With last night's dinner, i ate until i was satisfied, and there is something so blissful about being about to stop when one is naturally full, without feeling guilty and like you've stepped over a line. To savor and to eat until i'm satisfied is an experience that i rarely allow myself to have, so I am always surprised when it happens and then strive to maintain that blessed state as energetically as i might had i happened upon a string of days raw.

Where I am with food today is a journey.

There is this book by Diane Hampton called 'The Diet Alternative,' I've mentioned frequently on this blog. It is a Christian book i have had for many years and i re-read it from time to time. In it, Hampton explains how she lost all of her excess weight - by eating only 1x/day - whatever she wanted at THAT one sacred blessed meal. The rest of the day she gave to God as sacrifice and she suffered through the hunger, and prayed. I'm sure, soon, her body adjusted. She cites biblical reasons for this way of eating being healthy. I recall something about the people in the dessert being unable to refrigerate or store anything so they had to eat up whatever was available at at meal and then travel by foot the rest of the time. This one meal a day idea has always intrigued/appealed to me. I mean, if i could be thinner...and eat what i wanted, and not binge, why wouldn't i DO that? I mean, just by virtue of losing weight i'd be so much healthier than i am now anyway, and i would have enjoyed it.

And so i had this almost just 1 meal today, and why can't that be good enough? Does it have to be raw too? Why do i expect such perfection from myself?

My eating disorder is a thing of complete perfection versus completely out of control. To finally exist in one day "IN BETWEEN" those two extremes is thrilling and scary and enticing and like, what is so BAD about that??? I obviously "know" how much better raw food IS for me, intellectually. But emotionally I'm not convinced. I toy and test and re-test my limits and boundaries constantly. And in a way, i think maybe that IS healthy for me to do. Or maybe it isn't. I really don't know.

Two times in my life, i was significantly thinner and both times i was on very strict diets. So i tend to look in the direction of complete and utter deprivation and strict control as the way to succeed with my weight, but the minute i make a small infraction from perfection, kaplooey, i binge, and i have never been one to be able to jump right back on track, i give way completely, surrender myself completely to binge eating until i gain everything back. What if i didn't have to walk down that path anymore? What if i learned to just overcome the power of food like Diane Hampton did?

True, raw was the only "diet" i was ever on so long. 3.5 years. As long as i stayed on, I didnt gain everything back. There seemed to exist within raw enough flexibility and sensual enjoyment to keep me raw.

What happened when i went OFF of raw is that i wanted to be even thinner. I wanted to lose more and saw my ONLY way to do that was to give up fat entirely. And when i did, i lost weight daily, without exercising. And then, i'd binge hugely on gourmet raw and gain it all back. I was tired of the up and down 30 lbs and wanted to give up totally these enjoyment-binges of gourmet raw. I told myself cooked beans were better for me than nuts, (ala dr. fuhrman). But once i left the bounds of raw...i was utterly lost, utterly afraid, and dipping my toe into the "water," gave way to a total surrender to cooked binge eating again.

What if it didn't HAVE to be like that anymore? Isn't God supposed to be able to help us do ANYTHING?

This Diane Hampton diet alternative method says, 'You don't have to change the FOOD you eat to lose weight, you just have to have self control by abstaining from meals outside of 1 (or 2 when you reach a better weight) a day, but you need never watch the types of food you can eat again. Enjoy food within the boundaries of that one meal. And trust GOD to direct you.'

Eating cooked is seen as something good with this method. You mean that "horrible" thing i use to destroy myself....could maybe help me overcome binge eating???

You mean, i don't have to live in complete self denial anymore?

Raw, with it's simplistic answers to cure-all, can really get to feel sometimes like a cult. "Oh bullyhogwash," i think sometimes when i hear potatoes turn to glue in your system. I mean, come on folks, a freakin' potato?

There is something so appealing about Hampton's idea, and of asking God into my life to reign over my food and my health. Didn't jesus say it's not a matter of what we are putting into our mouths that is unclean, it is a matter of our gluttonous spirit that causes us to sin with food, and it is more of a matter of what comes OUT of us that is unclean (e.g. hatred, wickedness, etc..., from an unclean heart?)

Some christians look at us trying to be so healthy and perfect and saintly and "saved" on raw food and they think we are being foolish because only God can save you, not raw food. Will raw food get to you Heaven and buy you Eternal life? Sometimes, depending on what headspace i'm in, I don't believe in it.

And i'm a raw chef! Shame on me!

Like, intellectually, I UNDERSTAND that the right healthy food will make us healthier. It will. I understand this. And it's proven.

I'm talking about the ludicracy of binge eating. My mind forgets while i'm scarfing bucketloads of food how completely destructive this is for me.

What is a fish meal out - in comparison to bingeing? A drop in the bucket.

Is raw food the way OUT of binge eating? I thought at one time, and maybe that helped me to stay on raw so long, but then i proved to myself i could easily and frequently binge and gain on gourmet raw. And now i have experiences where i am in control with cooked.

And i say, 'What is the answer?'

I think it all comes down to BELIEF. What we believe we can achieve. If we believe raw food will cure us, it will. If we believe cooked food will cure us, it will. I want to be true and authentic to myself and what i believe. I want to live my life as ME. I want to integrate and stop binge eating. How will i get there? Stay tuned.

All or most of what i write is probably all rationalization, but that's where my head was today just because my day was set up so that i only had the opportunity to eat one meal and then i'm like, hey, that was freaking delish, maybe i can make this work!

And then i want to go kill it and binge.

Something in my head....that strives for freedom with food....will only accept complete perfection. Anything less and it says 'what the fuck, go unwind,' and i devour everything in sight.

We happened to be staying overnight at my parents house for a little visit, and after visiting, Cliff and I were in bed watching tv, i was a little bored, slightly hungry, Cliff was half asleep, no one was in the kitchen, my parents and brother were all in bed, the coast was clear, there was an opportunity should i want to take it, and i wanted to sneak out into the kitchen and binge.

I'd had that "awful" fish (in quotes for a purpose) and potatoes after all. [Because i ate that, I am no good. I deserve punishment.] It was delicious, but it made me smell and i was afraid of that and i wanted to unravel into food pleasure. When i tell myself enjoying food pleasure is BAD...i want to prove to myself it is not...by devouring everything "good" in sight. Then i can acknowledge, "no, silly, it is SOOOO good." But i don't need to binge to acknowledge i like cooked food today. I'll tell you straight now, i like cooked food!!!!!

When i wanted to binge last night, I kept telling myself this affirmation that i made up, 'nighttime eating is self defeating.' It's a good practical affirmation and it really seems to curb my acting on the impulse.

Nighttime eating is SO self defeating for me because going to bed with a giant full belly is akin to pouring battery acid on my vocal cords. It is also bad, of course, because of the weight gain from the huge number of calories i blindly take in.

It was very difficult to not see the idea of a binge tonight as anything but "fun entertainment and exciting".

But i ended up allowing myself to just fall asleep.

Now i'm up, but don't feel in danger. I looked at myself in the mirror and my face looked pleasing to me and i want to keep it that way. i did good for myself and my voice by not binge eating, i got over the hump of the idea. Good girl, Michelle. Now i don't feel in danger. A binge would blow me up and why do i value myself so lowly that i would stuff my face for fun at the expense of my voice and health? That seems like a mighty healthy viewpoint. My singing wasn't THAT bad that i should want to kill it. No, no, it is golden, it holds such potential! I should want to baby it.

P.S. Eating once a day and going to bed on an empty stomach is THE BEST remedy for reflux laryngitis.

My coworker, my darling Shaie, talks about the golden nuggets. We shit out "golden nuggets," she says. That means we have to look at the beauty of what we do, what we produce, at our behaviors and accomplishments, and not focus on the turd aspect, but notice the golden nuggets.

With my singing, i judge myself very harshly, never seem to meet my terribly high standards, give into binge eating, ruining my voice and then it becomes a self fulfilling profecy because how could i sing well with a swollen throat? Today i want to cherish the golden nugget of my voice. It may not be perfect yet. I may be frustrated that i still cannot sing as perfectly as i want to, but i still must cherish it and not destroy it.

I really do believe i have so much potential with my singing. I was in good voice for the Messiah but didn't use enough support and my performance of my aria suffered for it. So sad that i still don't know exactly what i need to do in the moment for my voice.

Let's say my voice is a Lambourgini, which i totally believe it is that quality of voice. The problem is, the owner of the voice/the driver has to know how to steer it - and no matter how many lessons i take, i am not always so wise about what i need in the moment. Sometimes i think it's like a form of A.D.D. "I forget" constantly what i need to do. Support, support, support, dummy. And here i'm driving this Lambourgini and i'm not supporting. No wonder the voice was shaking and not within my control.

There are certain disciplines we just MUST abide by in life. To sing well, you must support. You eat when you're hungry and not when you're not. Look at the trouble we get into when we drive through red lights. We cause collisions and accidents.

I was talking with my colleague during the Messiah intermission. I commented, "Singing is so hard, one must constantly strive for balance between darkness and brightness, force and letting go. It's a terrible struggle." She said, "I know. I hate it!" I had to laugh.

I was noticing how it is the same difficulty with singing for me as it is to achieve balance in my diet - strictness vs. flexibility, raw vs. cooked, etc...

I revisit the same topics over and over. I dance in circles.

I have to believe, however, that i'm learning, that i'm making some sort of progress, even if you can't SEE it. If not physically, then spiritually, as I learn to surrender to God more.

YES, I strive for balance and so often it escapes me, but all in all, I must learn to congratulate myself that today was a success. I sang the messiah choral parts which were all new, and i did a good, not a great job, on my solo, and a much better job on the recitative section. I allowed myself to enjoy my meal and not allowing thoughts of binge eating to creep in afterwards.

I have to congratulate myself for the golden nuggets.

And i didn't binge.

So even though i ate cooked food, which may or may not be the best for me, (i'm never quite sure where i am that day on that belief), at least i didn't binge.

So that's how i am :-))

I have often commented that healing an eating disorder and losing weight and repairing one's health are all really separate issues, i think. And i'm maybe trying to do it all at once. No wonder why it's so terribly difficult.

I have this other pivotal book in my library, 'Overcoming Binge Eating,' by this Dr. Christopher Fairburn. I've talked about it here before as well. And in it, he says you will never lose weight and keep it off until you overcome your binge eating disorder. And this idea is constantly in my mind. His approach is to have the sufferer eat everything in moderation because when we binge we eat everything anyway - the binge is an expression that "i WANT this thing but i can't allow myself to have it." Only after we heal our need to indulge binge impulses can we begin to lessen the amount of food we give ourselves and lose weight and keep it off, permanently.

The one good thing about my 100 lbs weight re-gain is that it was not more, Thank God. I intend never to regain those 75 lbs that would put me at my top weight. At least i love myself enough TODAY to say, "Uh uh. This is as far as i will allow this speedtrain to derail."

So when i eat a meal and it's enjoyed and in control there is always a feeling of elation for me because i was able to be 'normal,' if only for a short time.

And i still don't know if the food thoughts i get after eating, like i did tonight, originate from guilt or from the poor quality of the food itself. I hear from Dr. Fuhrman that foods with more micronutrients will calm cravings. Is ALL binge eating is - is a tumultuous rushing force seeking nutrients ? Or is it a mental illness unrelated to the type of food we are eating? I still don't know.

Geneen Roth would say the latter.

So would Diane Hampton.

So would Dr. Christopher Fairburn.

Anyway, whatever i eat, if i would just exercise i'd lose weight and gain strength, but i often can't see to allow myself to be good to myself in that way because i'm always feeling so guilty about what i've eaten. I feel i don't deserve to be good to myself. Only when i am perfect in my diet do i usually start to feel like exercising. If i would just exercise no matter what i ate, i'd be 1000x better off anyway.

So, despite my talking up cooked, my intention is to get right back on track eating raw again tomorrow morning, because i'm trying to achieve balance in my life and not veer off the road every time i go over a hump anymore. I want to be a good driver. i'll have smoothie for bkfast at my moms [addendum: i did], and then i'll see where the day leads. I think there is something to be said for surrendering and allowing your Higher Power and your most inner honest intuition to guide you.


xoxo michelle joy

Friday, December 2, 2011

"NECTAR OF THE GODS" RAW SALAD DRESSING!!!

My coworker, Tim, whom i adore, wrote me this note about a salad dressing I had made at work that he really loved:

"Whatever that Thousand Island looking dressing you made is nectar of the Gods. Please make more. I gave it out to at least 3 different people yesterday because i loved it and they all went nuts for it. I then made a salad for Deanna and brought it to her, her eyes lite up like a Christmas tree. Soooooooooooooo Yummmmm :]" Timmy

What a rave review!!

I made more of this dressing today (and have it in the fridge for sale at Arnold's Way, so if you want to grab some up, get your buttinsky over to Arnold's Way to pick some up!)

Or you can make it yourself! I'll share with you what i do!

Now, I make all raw food "to taste" and when i share recipes with you, it is usually something i've written down. But i didn't write down the exact measurements of this one, unfortunately, so this recipe is a guestimation, and you are going to have to experiment a little. But it will be good for you! See how you do! Be your OWN raw chef and learn how to balance flavors!!!

Chef Michelle's "NECTAR OF THE GODS" RAW RAW VEGAN SALAD DRESSING
In a vitamix, add:

3/4 cup of raw cashews
1 tsp of raw beetroot
1 flesh of red pepper

1 Tbsp of onion
1-2 Tbsp (or more) of raw cider vinegar (you can always add more, but it's difficult to counteract if you add too much!)
juice of 1/2 lemon
2 cloves of garlic
3 to 4 good slices of ginger
1/2 tsp or more of celtic or himalayan salt
2-4 Tbsp or more of raw agave
1/2 cup -1 cup water
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil

Blenderize until smooth. This dressing should be creamy and smooth, but not thick, only thick enough to coat greens nicely.

What i do when i make dressing is I go "conservative" on amounts of salt and agave and vinegar, etc., and after I blenderize it, I take a little wad of spring mix and dip it into the dressing and taste to see if i've created a pleasant balance. My motto is YOU CAN ALWAYS ADD MORE! If the dressing tastes bland, i'll add more salt, more agave, more garlic/ginger or for brightness, more vinegar.

Now, if i enjoy what i taste, so will everyone else at Arnold's Way!

If not, you'll have to play with the dressing until you get a nice balance of flavors. To balance dressing, it should contain a pleasing balance of 4 flavors: sweet, salty, tart and spicy, which complement bitter greens. [Bitter being the 5th taste of the renowned "5 tastes" ala Victoria Boutenko's teachings on raw un-cooking, the theory being, as long as you have all of the 5 flavors present in a raw dish such as salad with dressing, it will always be delicious. WELL, this is my #1 MOTTO and this is exactly how i make ALL raw food taste delicious.] So, the dressing should be tart enough (from vinegar), salty enough (from sea salt), sweet enough (from agave and beet), and spicy enough (ginger/garlic/onion) to balance out bitter salad greens.

P.S. Why are the 5 tastes so important? Well, we have 5 taste centers on our tongue. According to the Japanese, there is also another flavor the japanese call "umami" - it is a meaty flavor. I think nutritional yeast has an "umami" flavor. I always love to sprinkle nutritional yeast on salads!!!

So, please try this dressing and let me know how you like it!! If it comes out good, you will have created NECTAR OF THE GODS!!!!!!!!!!!

xoxo michelle joy

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Mmmmm...SIMPLE RAW CABBAGE SALAD!

This salad tastes so delicious accompanied with the Garden Basil Almond Pate' I made the other day. SO SIMPLE and yet, so flavorful!! Amazing!!!

Use food processor blade that would cut, say, carrots into slices.

Take a half of a small-ish head of purple cabbage and cut into quarters and feed into food processor with this slicing blade. You will get perfect coleslaw shredded cabbage. Transfer to a bowl and add: a few grinds of celtic or himalayan salt over cabbage, 1 tsp of agave, 1 Tbsp of raw apple cider vinegar and about 1 Tbsp of olive oil. Squish ingredients all together with your hands. DONE!

Now, place a nice big handful of the slaw in a lunch bowl and top with a plop of the Garden Basil Almond Pate'. Eat together.....SO DELICIOUS!!!!

Chop up some tomato, onion, cucumber to accompany if desired!

xoxo michelle joy

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

COOKED FOOD ADDICTION & MY AMAZING (LOWER FAT) RAW GARDEN BASIL ALMOND PATE'!

The answer to the question, "To be...or not to be"...is to BE!!

RAW, that is!!

After the oatmeal, things degraded and my raw diet fell apart.

It had been an entire week of raw bliss that disintigrated. I'd lost weight, my reflux was improved, the lump on my leg diminished, the dizzy feeling went away, i was feeling hopeful and energized, i started exercising again.

Then I forgot I wasn't "normal." I forgot I am a cooked food addict and indulged in cooked food. One thing led to another as they say and soon my eating was out of control again.

_ _ _

So, choosing to get back on track, I'm re-committing to 100% raw.

_ _ _

Tomorrow I go to NYC for my singing lesson with my old teacher, Badiene. We've been doing a bartering, where I work for her the entire afternoon and evening after my voice lesson. I do secretarial work & cleaning, and it seems to be working out so far. Since i'll be away all day and am recommitted to raw, I just made my lunch and dinner pate' to take with me to NYC, and I'll take some raw bread, i'll buy salad, smoothie, juice. I should be fine.

The pate' i just made is so freaking delish, i wanted to share with you the recipe!!!

You must prepare the almonds for the recipe, so please follow these directions:

GERMINATE, BLANCH & DEJACKET AMONDS - DIRECTIONS
Soak 8oz. organic almonds. Ideally, they should soak overnight.

Blanch in the following manner to retain raw nutrients and enzymes. After soaking, drain the almonds of their soaking water and place them in a large bowl. Pour very hot water (not boiling) over the nuts and let them sit in the water for about 1 minute. Then drain them with a collander, rinse them, and follow these directions to dejacket.

Place the blanched almonds on a plate, and while sitting in front of the TV for entertainment, pop the little brown jackets off of the almonds. Place the white almonds in a container. (De-jacketing improves their flavor, not to mention the color of the pate'.)

With the pristine white almonds, do the recipe. (Discard the jackets in the trash or find a use for them, if you like.)

FYI - Soaking nuts/seeds, (from what i learned at OHI), reduces their fat by 40%, and turns them into more of a vegetable because they begin to sprout. "Germinating" (soaking) nuts changes their internal chemistry. The nuts "think" they are in the earth (they don't know they are in a bowl.) The water awakens them from their "dormant" (sleeping) state (they think it's raining) and begins the process of growing them into an almond tree. The almond starts feeding on it's own fat (the process of germination). We eat them up before they could ever turn into a tree, but they don't know that!!! They are working hard to change themselves and transform themselves into LIVING BEINGS that are no longer sleeping.

It is very very good to soak nuts and seeds. It reduces their fat and improves their digestibility. It also removes something called ENZYME INHIBITORS, a natural protection in the nuts that helps them maintain their sleeping state. (Dormant nuts last indefinately due to enzyme inhibitors. We don't want to ideally eat these sleeping almonds. We want to eat almonds that have begun the transformation/life process. p.s Germinated nuts have a much shorter shelf life. You can keep germinated nuts in the fridge for really less than 1 week (they will eventually sour), or dehydrate them at 105 degrees to restore their indefinite shelf life.

You should also have a lot less gas if you soak your nuts/seeds.


CHEF MICHELLE'S LOWER FAT GARDEN BASIL ALMOND PATE'
In a food processor with S blade, process:

8oz. of organic almonds, germinated, blanched and de-jacketed (see directions above)
juice of 1 medium lemon
2 big handfuls of fresh basil
2 large carrots, chopped
2 large ribs of celery, chopped
2 garlic cloves
1 Tbsp purple onion
1/4 cup nutritional yeast
celtic salt, to taste
6 shakes of cayenne pepper

While processing, stream in 1/4-1/2 cup of water. Add more or less to achieve desired texture of pate'. With spatula, scrape down sides of processor during processing.

When finished, this pate' will be smooth, but have a grainy texture. No matter, it is so freakin' delish, you won't mind.

A non-germinated cashew pate' on the other hand will be VERY creamy, but much higher in fat.

Almonds are the KING of nuts. Germinated? MUCH LOWER FAT! I used to make this pate' with olive oil. Why? It doesn't need it!!

Lasts 10 days refrigerated.

_ _ _ _

I really hope you enjoy this pate'! Please let me know if you try my recipes and if they taste good and work out for you! Have you tried the asparagus soup?? It was so yummy! And this pate' is healthy AND delish!!!!

_ _ _

Do you consider yourself a cooked food addict?

Experience is showing me that I am one. I knew it when I was at OHI. That's why I never veered off of the plan. I didn't trust myself to stop eating cooked if i started. For 3.5 years as a raw vegan, I knew I was a cooked food addict, so i never had "just a little."

As soon as I began to open the gates to cooked food with cooked beans, I began to gain weight, eat more and more and more cooked food...until I gained back over 100lbs.

Experience will show that raw foods worked for me. Cooked foods have confused and confounded me and have helped me gain weight and lose control.

Maybe someday in the future, when I am more spiritually strong, I will be able to handle some cooked foods. For today, it only opens a door that is best left shut.

I'm so glad to have gotten back on the horse! Fall down, go boom. Get right back up on the saddle.

xoxo michelle joy

Monday, November 28, 2011

TO BE OR NOT TO BE...THAT IS THE QUESTION

A wonderful supportive friend of mine, Karen, sent me this amazing affirmation:

"Thank you for the miracles that come my way when i postpone eating (when i am not hungry.)"

That is interesting that little part in quotes "when i am not hungry."

I had an episode last night of postponing eating when i was hungry. I was at Arnold's Way after my opera, and was very very hungry. I felt like a "cheezesteak," which was really really good and satisfying, but after, i wanted something more. I didn't know what. I was looking around Arnold's Way, considering my options. I wanted a peice of raw pie, but know it is very fatty and i have to sing again tonight. Best for me to eat fatty ealier for the sake of my reflux or not at all.

So, then my miracle came. Out from the kitchen walks Ronit, Arnold's daughter, who now works there, with a supersize green smoothie in her hand, and asked if i wanted it - it was extra and i could have it for free. My little miracle. It filled me, and it was a good lowfat choice! Thank you, God. It felt like a gift and like God took care of me.

A wonderful affirmation. Thank you, Karen! (p.s. Karen memorizes her affirmations, an astounding practice that is having remarkable results in her life, among other things like Eckhart Tolle's teachings).

Today i am one week raw, yay, but i had cooked food yesterday. It makes everything unsure now.

I'd left the house before the opera, full on a smoothie, but by the time we got to the performance area 45 mins later, Cliff was starving and so was I. Smoothies don't hold you that long if you drink "brunch" late. It was 1:30pm already and I was hungry prematurely according to my plans. Yes, I had almonds in my purse for such an occasion, but didn't 'feel' like almonds.

We were at Wendy's (the hamburger place). Cliff got a chicken sandwhich, and i, starving, didn't want another salad. Hm, a plain dry baked potato, on the other hand, which wasn't in the plan for my new raw diet, seemed like an excellent option at that time: low fat, energizing, whole food right before the opera.

It was delicious dry, no butter or salt and i had no guilt afterwards. Frankly, i forgot about it. I had dinner at Arnold's after the opera as I was still thinking "raw," and a smoothie before i went to bed, still on "raw" mode.

The problem is, now i woke up this morning and all i want is oatmeal. 5 mins i thought about it lying in bed. I woke up hungry. And for the last hour, i've written about it.

What will be the consequences? What other thing will i want next? Am i being sensible....listening to my body....or am i an addict?

It's hard to say. I don't know which it is.

What is this time about, this new decision for raw.... Is this for me to go raw 100%... Or is this a time for me to learn to eat raw and cooked "right" (low fat, whole foods, etc...) And who is running this ship, anyway?

I started to write again on the blog. Hello. i'm "raw" Michelle Joy again.

And suddenly, i don't know who i am, what to do, what i want, what is "right" for me.

Oatmeal never killed anyone, but what is next?

Am i walking into a hole again or am i making a safe informed decision?

I didn't know what to do, so i decided to just take my Vitamineral Green instead (a supplement I've been taking for like months...since i last blogged), and now i'm writing and haven't eaten yet and am still hungry.

I know some of you eat some cooked, and some of you do not. Writing again feels awesome, and i'm sure some of you will say some "healthy" cooked is FINE, but if i asked some others of you, 100% raw, you'd say, "Michelle, you are in danger!"

Am i? Or am i not?

The alcoholic who takes his first sip of wine. The compulsive eater who takes the first compulsive bite. The cooked food addict that had a taste of a delicious hot steaming baked potato and now wants MORE of that sort.

Isn't this all up to me and what i WANT??? Do i want raw? Do i want cooked? Do i want a combination? I'm really not sure what I want to do, and, well, i guess it is just up to me and i have to CHOOSE.

What do i want in this life? Is it my goal to be the next raw star? To finally get THIN writing my raw cookbooks and doing my raw videos? I thought it was, just a few days ago. Or am I the aspiring opera singer, the one who will sing at the MET? What IS this life of mine????

Friday, I was at Arnold's and i was thinking...i'll be dead soon. What do i want to leave this world? Some of my music will be nice, but what about raw? Don't i want to impact people after i'm dead? My books and videos will still be here. So will my blog. If i finally FIGURE this out, isn't that....like amazing? It seems like a good goal.

Then i get ooky about how raw sometimes feels like a CULT. Am i just BRAINWASHED??? What is the point of eating in such a way so that we can stay young when we are all dying daily anyway? I can get very philosophical about raw.

Wait, more to the point - IS RAW THE ANSWER TO CURING OBESITY AND BINGE EATING? OR NOT? That is REALLY why I'm here.

Some would say YES. Others who have overcome obesity and binge eating on cooked would say NO.

WHAT DO I SAY???

What do i WANT?

Anyway, to add to the matter, i spent 100$ at Arnolds last night buying my raw paraphernalia: nutritional yeast and seeds and almonds and nori, etc... I felt i needed to be more stocked and able to make my pleasant raw meals at home now that i was raw again, and to have something to work with so i am not tempted to eat cooked. (I'd forgotten about the potato, hm.) Is that evidence i can eat "healthy" cooked in the moment...and still go back to raw without fear/guilt/regret and without starting a binge?

I'd planned on soaking my seeds/nuts to make them lowfat and more digestible, better for my reflux, better for my weight. My goal was to do raw "better." Because raw can be VERY high fat. Actually, Dr. Fuhrman's diet, raw veggies and raw fruit...and cooked veggies and beans and only a LITTLE bit of nuts, etc... is probably the wisest/healthiest for reflux and weight....and NOT RAW: Nuts, oils, avocado in excess DO aggrivate my reflux. They do. And come on, they are HARD not to overdo.

Why does FOOD have to be so complicated?

I know using the word "better" is a judgement, Karen tells me. I wanted to do raw "better," I told her. I wanted to be more obedient to the things i have learned that improve raw food, I told her. I just wanted to do raw - in a newer way this time. I wanted to succeed.

Success can take many forms.

Does it have to be black/white, one or the other? Raw or not raw?

Unfortunately, with me, that's the way things TEND to go based on experience, black and white. I start with a baked potato and next thing you know, i'm at Auntie Anne's buying a hotdogs stuffed into pretzel. Who am I kidding? I'd buy 3 of them!

BUT, if all we have is THIS PRESENT MOMENT, as Karen is teaching me (Eckhart Tolle teachings), we have no past, no future, etc..., then, do the lessons of our experience/past/failures mean anything? Karen strives to live in the moment with food. She practices wiping away all memories of the food she has just eaten after she is done eating it. No guilt, regret. No judgement.

When i am good and centered and thoughtful and totally uncompulsive like i feel today, oatmeal feels absolutely non threatening and that it will not hurt me in the slightest or "cause" a binge or cause obesity. I just fear my desires when lunch time comes. Am i going to want to crack open that can of garbanzos i've been staring at? Am i going to want to cook up the quinoa i found yesterday cleaning out the cubbard? And those things are not BAD at ALL. I believe they are all healthy. I just don't know if i can TRUST myself.

Is this a time to find out? or is this a time to FEAR those desires???

Is raw really the magic cure for obesity?

"You cannot get fat on raw plant food." David Wolfe

David Wolfe obviously never saw me devour 10 bags of Brad's Raw Chips in one sitting.

The other day i made this amazing raw asparagus soup. I NEVER would have done that had i not been thinking RAW. It only had 10 macademia nuts in it, a whole head of asparagus, the rest water and veggies, no oil. It was a huge bowl of soup and sooooo delish. I was so extremely proud of mysself. I was "doing good" - like this was improvement for me and the "new" raw, not so nut-centered.

I just don't know if I start eating cooked, where it will end. Because you have to admit, cooked TASTES so much more comforting, warmer, more succulent, more tempting for sure, than raw. That asparagus soup would have been kick-ass cooked...

Do i care about health (enzymes/nutrition)?

Or taste?

If i'd have been proactive at arnold's i'd have bought some chia seeds so i could make a chia pudding for breakfast. That is hearty and filling in the winter time. Going raw in winter is a more challenging time. I don't really "WANT" a cold smoothie right now.

ADDENDUM: Cliff just came down and asked if I wanted a smoothie. I said, "I don't know. Do you?" He answered, "Not really. I'm kind of smoothie'd out."

For Cliff, food is not something he plans, thinks about. He gets hungry, he eats. That is what naturally thin people do. Naturally thin people also postpone eating until they know exactly what they want.

Since i have now postponed for HOURS now, will I have a miracle today and God will step in with a solution? Or will I take the reigns and make a CHOICE?

Roy Masters www.fhu.com, my guru, is fond of teaching, "Know that you do not know, and soon you will know."

Thanks for listening. I wonder what I'll do?!

xoxox Michelle Joy