Posts tagged ‘peace on earth’
Today is the start of the Memorial Day weekend. I’m not sure what that means for me other than lots of yard sales and the permission to wear white clothes. Although, a Google search of the holiday informed me that fewer and fewer people are following the white clothes rule and are “wearing white throughout the year”. Well fine – go ahead, if you really want to. Anyhow – it talked a bit about honoring those who gave their lives serving our country but basically called it the beginning of the summer season. It’s interesting how things change. Oh well. The only veteran I know really well is my dad and he’s still alive and so has to wait to be honored until Veterans’ Day, when I put my white clothes away again, by the way. Anyhow – it’s a three day weekend for most of us Americans and that’s always nice. It isn’t one here at Living Light, but that’s okay – we’re having one of our fun potlucks in the Admin. Office on Monday and that’s always nice, too! So I guess, basically, I’m going to try and be mindful of our country’s history and the personal sacrifices that went along with it. And – I’m going to rock my white pants on Monday.
Our students will be starting their Associate Chef and Instructor Training on Monday. This two week course fine tunes their raw culinary skills and also empowers them to teach others to make their own raw food. And that’s really what the light in Living Light is all about: sharing the possibilities of a raw, plant based and cruelty free way of eating with the world. As our Culinary Programs Manager, Martine Lussier, says, “Peace begins in the kitchen”. Hey – what a great focus point for Memorial Day! Have a deliciously peaceful weekend!
Today, Living Light graduated its first Gourmet Raw Food Chefs of 2012. I’m always so amazed by our students. Some of them come so far and they all leave their homes to spend six weeks (sometimes longer) with us to learn how to prepare raw vegan gourmet food. It’s a huge commitment of both time and money, not to mention how focused and ready to be taught they have to be. It really is a labor of love. Anyhow – I’m so proud of them and excited to see what they go off into the world to do with their new culinary greatness. They are leaving us with a whole new way of looking at food, ready to take that knowledge home and recreate their lives. What an adventure.
Everyday life can get monotonous. It can get real routine and stale. But I’ve found that I’m better able to get out of that reality and into a more adventurous one pretty simply these days. I’m trying to focus on myself in a positive way. I’m enjoying my kids for who they are and am overwhelmed by the wonderful individuals they are growing into. I’m actually remembering to be grateful for all sorts of things every day. I’m trying to relax and trust the universe to provide the things I think I need in its own time. I’m trying to relax and trust the people in my life to be whom and what they present themselves to be. I guess, basically, I’m just not wasting my time worrying. And you know what? Every day is an opportunity to recreate ourselves. Everyday life can be an adventure, too.
Today is my birthday! My very most favorite holiday, really. I realize it’s not an actual holiday outside of Maryelizabethland, but I don’t care. I expect the people who love me to make as big a deal out of it as I do. They don’t have to make any kind of material fuss, just a fuss of friendliness. (They can make a material fuss next year when I turn fifty.) Anyhow, I’ve managed to surround myself with loving, supportive people pretty exclusively at this point, so I am getting my wish – complete with a yummy potluck right here in the Admin. Office of Living Light! I’m truly grateful that I have this fabulous job with all these wonderful people. Thanks!
There’s nothing like being in a group of like-minded people all heading in essentially the same direction. And that’s what you get when you come to study at Living Light. Not only are you with people all learning the same thing, but that thing is a planet friendly way of eating that can change the world. It can certainly change yours and what better way to reinforce that than to spend time with others with the same goal? Staying at the Living Light Inn is another potential layer to the immersion aspect of learning raw food with us. Not only are you learning and creating with your fellow students, you’re living with them in a beautiful California Craftsman style building with organic bedding, triple filtered water and other eco-friendly amenities. The communal kitchen is fully equipped to practice and prepare all the new recipes you’re learning and to try out your own creations.
Traveling to Living Light to learn gourmet raw cuisine is going to impact your life, no matter where you stay or how long you stay. As you follow your passion, you will find yourself surrounded by like minded people more and more. If your passion is raw food, let your path lead you to Living Light. You’ll never be the same.
Have you ever wished making a big life change were just as easy as heading down to the crossroads and selling your soul to the devil? I sure have. It isn’t though. Making changes – taking your life into your own hands – takes courage, inspiration and a ton of hard work. Most of that work takes place in your own heart, but not all of it. To make a big life change, be prepared both spiritually and practically. Then, just trust and go! Follow your new road.
If there’s one thing I get asked here at work all the time, it’s “What will my Living Light training prepare me to do?”. Well – besides assisting you in making a change to living foods that will change your whole life on a cellular level, the careers in raw foods are numerous and lucrative. We’ve just put together a comprehensive bulletin delineating just what you can expect to do with your education including a video and some inspirational success stories. Check them out! And don’t forget – the world is your oyster – you need to be the catalyst in your own life, but we can sure help you get ready.
Are you in a good mood or a bad mood today? I feel compelled to report I’ve been in a good mood for weeks. I believe it has something to do our old friend balance, about which my dear blog sister, Kristin, wrote with such eloquence just the other day. Sometimes we get tied to negativity on some level and aren’t able or ready to release it. That’s okay. Strength of spirit takes time and effort to develop just like strength of body. I don’t know much about the physical stuff, but I’ve been working pretty hard at finding some spiritual foundation upon which to balance my soul. Releasing negativity, no matter how comforting or familiar that energy has become, is a sure step towards fitness. And, evidently, good moods.
Do you know what else is sure to put you in a good mood? A treat from our dessert case in the Cafe. Our students are upstairs in Pastry Arts – Unbaked! right now so you should come in and check out the delectable raw goodness they’re learning to create. If you or someone you love is new to raw foods, keep in mind that raw desserts are one of the best ways to begin – a gateway to transitioning. Obviously we can’t eat our way to happiness, but then again, a piece of cheesecake made from nothing but whole, living foods is nothing to cry about!
It’s that time of year again: the Feast of Saint Bridghid, Candlemas or, as the pagans call it, Imbolc. Time to celebrate the Celtic fire goddess – my daughter Bridget’s namesake. The fun thing about naming your daughter after a goddess is you get an extra yearly celebration. Like most of us when we were fourteen, my daughter hates her name. She wishes I’d chosen something more punk….like Strychnine. Can’t say that ever crossed my mind, but I can say that I chose her name with care and thought someday she’d appreciate being named for such a powerful woman. And – I’m proud to say my Bridget’s already a powerful woman in her own right and living up to her namesake’s standard.
Speaking of my daughter, she and the also fourteen year old daughter of IT goddess Teresa are going to take FUNdamentals of Raw Living Foods here at Living Light this Saturday. Isn’t that cool? Both of them are vegetarians and we moms are super excited that they get this opportunity to expand their raw knowledge. FUNdamentals is a wonderful class. It’s a comprehensive overview of a living diet that will familiarize anyone with the basics. You also get tons of yummy samples and I guarantee you’ll leave feeling excited about a raw vegan lifestyle. We offer FUNdamentals here at Living Light eight more times this year plus we’re taking it on the road all around North America in 2012. Check out our website for all the details or give me a call.
As the year draws to a close, it feels like we’ve been through a lot. We are all crammed into a little office after our flood, and our desks are all in different places. Most of our files are in boxes, and someone might give a shout of delight to find something – there’s a phone book! Makes you appreciate the simple things in life, and makes me think of the people around the world, and in our own country who have suffered great upheavals, challenges, trials, and tribulations. This year of 2012 holds a lot of promise, as all new years do. For a few golden moments everything is swept clean in our consciousness, and the world seems full of inspiring possibility.
Let’s keep that in mind. What can we do to make the world a better place? Keep our thoughts positive? Be more mindful of others? Be kinder and gentler, even to ourselves? Should we make resolutions, or just resolve to do our best no matter what the circumstances?
At the very least, we can be hopeful: Peace on Earth, Goodwill towards All. Every year as the sun begins to take hold again, we have this opportunity. And most years we see a lot of people who can’t quite seem to hold that thought. Let’s do it – let’s be the best we can, and take good care of each other in the coming year.
I was driving south from Fort Bragg towards Mendocino and the Peace people were on the left hand side of the road, just like they are nearly every Sunday. I made the peace sign out the window to them, and felt for just a moment that old feeling from the 60s, when making the peace sign made you feel connected to the other person you were looking at, heart to heart. I felt it so strongly that tears spilled out of my eyes suddenly – a whole flood of them. And I realized that my heart was cracked open for a moment. Hearing all of the news of war and strife all over the planet every day takes a toll on the human psyche, and I also watched the documentary “Inside Job” over the weekend, about the financial collapse in the world economy and the people responsible for it. It came to me that the Peace people might do no more than stand by the side of the road every Sunday waving peace flags and banners, but the work they do is important and real. If it touches deeply just one heart a week it means the world.
Can’t believe it’s been almost exactly a month since we started our holiday blogs. So much has happened this month; so many things to do, and now they are nearly all done and it’s the night before Christmas Eve. And my son Simon is making his way down to Fort Bragg from Prince Rupert, B.C. He flew out of the Yukon Territories a week ago, went to visit his Dad inland in Hazelton, B. C. and called from Vancouver, B.C. yesterday saying that he’d arrive in Portland today to see his aunts and cousins.
And then it’s another day or two until he reaches the Mendocino Coast. Last time he came down he arrived at 3:00 AM. I’m hoping he doesn’t drive half the night. Being a mom, I tend to worry, although I try not to. I made some raw chocolate chip cookies for him, and have started some sauerkraut and a big batch of buckwheat granola. I usually like to make him baked scones when he comes to visit, so I’ll do that. Even though he is fully grown, I still like to make special things for him. But my big dreams of doing my once a year baking for the office didn’t really come to fruition.
Oh well, I still accomplished a lot–got all the boxes off on time to family and friends, and today was a flurry of gift and card exchanges at the office. So now it’s time to put the finishing touches on the house–is everything perfect? There’s something bittersweet about the holidays, too, isn’t there? You think of those who are not here any more, of memories both good, and at times, well–not so perfect. But overall, the feeling is more sweet than bitter.
I think the overwhelming truth is that the feeling is love. It’s time to forget the petty concerns of ordinary life, and concentrate on what is truly important: good friends, family, peace, love, and joy. I saw those last three words in the window of the local plumbing shop this morning, and I thought, yeah….that’s it, and thank you for reminding me. Wishing all of you a joyful, peaceful, and love-filled holiday.
Pre-holiday anxiety can set in pretty quickly, so it’s important to do everything you can to stay focused on the joy. Just because I went into the post office today to ship a birthday package to my son in Canada, and there was a long line already, doesn’t mean that I have to get all scrooged up about it. And just because I filled out the longish customs form and was told I had to go back over everything I’d written so that it would show up on the last page of the quadruplicate doesn’t mean that I should feel any anxiety (especially with a long line forming behind me already). It must mean that now is the time to breathe, relax, and enjoy. Hey, Fort Bragg doesn’t even have any traffic to speak of. No malls, no big box stores, no vast parking lots where you can’t find your car. We do have a tree lighting ceremony, a festival of lights in the Botanical Gardens, several craft and art fairs, and a performance of the Nutcracker every year at the groovy refurbished Cotton Auditorium.
Well, actually, we say there is traffic if it takes us 12 minutes to get to work in the morning instead of 10. And we have a holiday truck parade where practically the whole town turns out no matter what the weather, and the aforementioned tree lighting ceremony, and kids parties at the aquatic center and all kinds of fun, small town homey reasons to love the season. Here at Living Light, we’ve already had a meeting to plan the entertainment, food, and decor for our annual party, and we’ve agreed in the admin office to put off playing holiday music until after Thanksgiving. We’ve started to bring in little treats for each other, and take an extra minute to be kind and considerate of our coworkers. That’s how it starts to creep in…that holiday spirit that takes hold of your heart, brings a tear to your eye when you watch the season’s favorite movies for the umpteenth time, and helps you remember the spirit of the season: Peace on Earth, Goodwill towards men (and women, and children, and animals.) Yeah.