#LJIL; September ‘15 🌿

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Hold your head up. Take an unplanned road trip. Be thankful. Try everything once. Color outside the lines. Fall in love. Embrace change. Trust in yourself. Do what you love. Dance when everyone is looking. Eat dessert first. Be nice to everyone. Send thank you cards. Be the change you wish to see in the world. Play in the rain. Break the rules once in while. Do random acts of kindness. Forgive even when its hard. Make time for family. Don’t count the minutes; count the laughs. – Anonymous

1. Good Food, Good Life

It has been getting cooler recently, with temperatures plunging down to 4degC the other morning as I cycled to school, and during chilly times like these, I can think of nothing else than to feast on a never-ending supply of warm, nourishing, hearty and satisfying vegetable stew/ veggie pasta, that is, beside of a mountain pile of bananas, figs, cherries, etc. and oats of course. 😉 Thin/ clear soups just don’t do it for me in this weather – it just flooooows through my system without really making me feel filled up nourished in any way at all.

P.s. A little trick I use to thicken my soup is to mix in steamed pumpkin/ sweet potato into the mix! 😉

P.p.s. This article about sweet potatoes is worth a read!

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P.p.p.s. This is proof that Fall is heeerrre!!! (Officially since the 21st of August) Temperatures are falling and leaves are browning/ turning into the prettiest shades of orange. Wheeeeeehooooooo! 🍁😋🍂

2. Celebrating the Birth of Females:

Having read/ heard so much about how males are unreasonably prioritised over females in some parts of this world, I couldn’t help but squeal for joy when I read this article! It is proof that mankind is finally moving in the right direction. It is exactly the positive energy that we need to experience in life. :’) What I found absolutely wonderful about this is that it is celebrated in such a nature-friendly way – something we urgently need to do more of in the midst of the worsening health of Mother Earth.

YAY TO FEMALES!!! & MALES!!
YAY TO GREEEEEEENS TOO!!!! 🌿

3. My Dear Friends’ Wise Words:

We should thrive, not just survive. Humans are created for more than just existing and ‘survival of the fittest’, we were made to flourish. – Alex

Accept what was, revel in what is and have hope in what will be. – Char

I hope for all of us to have the strength to endure such a tough period so as to pursue what we are truly interested in, so that in the future, we can live a life that does not only pray for the arrival of Fridays and to genuinely be in the process for every single moment of all our lives. – Hiu

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As I was typing out Hiu’s quote, I looked out of the window and saw this. Nature is flawless, isn’t she?

4. Fight Against Animal Cruelty:

I was initially quite disturbed by the possibility that animals may have been drugged to stay calm for collecting footage for this video (as it usually happens when animals are included in shoots/ movies). 😥 However, I did a little research and found out that this video IS COMPLETELY ANIMAL-FRIENDLY/ VEGAN.

FACT 1:

The footages of the lion/ giraffe standing still were actually captured through strokes of luck! The videographer was positioned at a distance from these gorgeous animals and managed to capture them during their calmest moments. :’)

At 3:39, it reads, “All of Taylor’s proceeds from this video will be donated to wild animal conservation efforts through the African Parks Foundation of America.”

APFA’s causes include the eradication of poaching, nature conservation, community engagement, and the development of sustainable tourism in some of Africa’s most vulnerable regions. The organization’s work is supported by affiliated groups in the UK and the Netherlands.

Source: http://www.onegreenplanet.org/news/taylor-swift-donates-proceeds-from-new-video-wildest-dreams-to-wildlife-conservation/

Awwww Taylor :’) 🌷

Pssssst… this is pretty cheeky! 😉

P.s. Speaking about Veganism, I found out that famous individuals such as Ellie Goulding, Ellen DeGeneres, Jarred Leto, David Carter and Alec Baldwin are all Vegan. ALSO, YouTubers Jenna Marbles, FunForLouis, Niomi Smart and Mr Ben Brown JUST RECENTLY TURNED VEGAN!! 😍 This gets me so excited You have no idea!!!! These YouTubers reach out to millions of viewers EVERY. SINGLE. DAY. and would thus be able to do so much with regards to spreading the message of Veganism. Scoooooore!! 😙

FACT 2:

Taylor Swift’s actual heartbeat guides the ethereal production on her Lana Del Rey-esque “Wildest Dreams.” Yes, you read that right. Taylor Swift’s recorded her actual heartbeat for the 1989 track. If this sounds a little familiar, it should. King of Pop, Michael Jackson, once recorded his very own pulse for the iconic “Smooth Criminal.“

This behind-the-scenes studio secret hasn’t been officially revealed by Swift, at least not yet. It’s sneakily listed under the production credits in the fine print of her album booklet, nonchalantly crammed between the guitar and strings credits: “Heartbeat – Taylor Swift.”

Source: http://popweekly.net/post/104329132690/taylor-swift-records-actual-heartbeat-for-1989

FACT 3:

Writing for NPR, Viviane Rutabingwa and James Kassaga Arinaitwe criticized the video for “present[ing] a glamorous version of the white colonial fantasy of Africa” and ignoring the brutality of colonialism. “[…] We don’t totally blame Taylor Swift, but the people behind the video should have done a little more research. They should have wondered how Africans would react. This nostalgia that privileged white people have for colonial Africa is awkwardly confusing to say the least and offensive to say the most.” Lauren Duca of The Huffington Post criticized the video for bringing back “white colonialism” although both its producer and its editor are both African-American, “Swift has opted for the bolder option of actually just embodying the political exploitation of a region and its people. It’s brave, really. Almost as brave as moving sensuously in the vicintiy [sic] of a real-life lion.”

Source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wildest_Dreams_%28Taylor_Swift_song%29

5. Vegan? High Carb? Low Fat?

Now this beauty IS NIOMI SMARTTTTT!! :’) I mentioned her earlier on in this post, about YouTubers who’ve recently gone Vegan. She was Vegetarian for a while before making the shift to Veganism and she’s been vlogging about how she’s been feeling healthier and leaner ever since the change. She’s such a darling and cooks up a storm in the kitchen both for herself and her boyfriend and fellow YouTuber, Marcus Butler.

I love how Niomi mentioned that this “Healthy Rainbow Salad” is full of greens, legumes and such and You can afford to eat till You’re full because 1) the ingredients literally aren’t pricey to purchase in big amounts, 2) the ingredients have SO MUCH nutritional value while being low in calories (Not that we should count calories!!! Eat when Your body tells You that You need food!)

I also really love how Niomi has been so generous as to cook for Marcus’ meals too (check out her ‘What I Eat In A Day’ videos), thus exposing Marcus to Vegan meal options. Best part? Marcus has been very open-minded towards Veganism and has even started including Healthy Recipe Videos into his Vlog Channel, MoreMarcus, specifically under his Food + Health playlist.

LOOK AT THESE VEGAN ICE LOLLIES and PIZZAAAAA!!

Both of them combined reach out to millions of viewers – I’m excited to see where this will take Veganism! :’)

First off, pleeeeeaaaase take 9minutes 19seconds out of Your schedules to watch this video. The message Bonnie is spreading through this video would do  amazing things to Your health and I regard this as one of those “MUST-SHARE”s in life. It’s simply paramount to getting use much out of this life we have. :’)

EMBRACE CALORIES!!
EMBRACE CARBS!!!
EAT MINDFULLY WHILE FILLING YOUR TUMMY!!!! 💘
Don’t fear meal times! Enjoy them!

HCLF (High Carb Low Fat) Veganism saved my life, literally. It was when I found this lifestyle that I became more comfortable with consuming food again and it essentially kickstarted my ED recovery process all those months ago. :’) I currently follow a 80/10/10 diet (although it leans more towards 90/5/5 on most days) and have only seen AND felt nothing but positive changes happening with my body. It’s almost too good to be true! I’m never going back to my old diet, that’s for sure.

This lifestyle was found by one of the most inspiring people I’ve ever come across – Dr McDougall. He made an excellent speech at one of the TEDtalk sessions to explain the importance of Carbs in our diets. It changed my life, I hope it’d do the same for Yours: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d5wfMNNr3ak

This is also a pretty interesting read: https://www.drmcdougall.com/2015/07/31/athletics-in-the-spotlight-low-carb-vs-high-carb/

Psssssst! Need one more reason to Carb up? Search “what fuels our brain” on Google. This is the first result You’d get: http://learn.fi.edu/learn/brain/carbs.html

A Celebrity who gives me HOPE.

Ellen DeGeneres got about adding a “Ellen’s Healthy Living” page on her website to help her audience go Vegan because she knew that by doing so, she can truly make a difference for both humans and animals alike.

There really isn’t much more to say other than the fact that she has a heart of gold. I must say it is an honour to be able to share my birthday with such an inspirational being. :’)

I would rather eat cardboard than go back to eating animals. – Ellen DeGeneres

6. Mono-eating?

“Mono eating is a very simple way of eating; it means making a meal out of one type of food only. For example, when you feel like eating a banana, eat one, and then continue to eat bananas until you have no desire to eat any more. That may come at the second banana, or after 15+. Banana mono eating is popular with many on high-fruit diets, particularly sporty ones. I know men who run who eat a lot of bananas! But, of course, mono eating doesn’t just mean bananas. Any plant food can form the basis of a mono meal.”

NOW THIS WAS WHAT I FOUND COOL:

“After we’ve mono eaten a certain quantity of a food we may find that the taste becomes unattractive. That’s the signal that our bodies have had enough of whatever that food supplies us. David Wolfe (‘Sunfood Diet Success System’) describes it thus: ‘When the organism has filled its need for that particular food, it no longer wants any more and the taste of the food changes…This is called an aliesthetic taste change.’
(I’ve looked up ‘aliesthetic’; it’s not in the dictionary – let’s just take David’s word for it!)”

Source: http://debbietookrawforlife.blogspot.sg/2008/06/mono-eating-or-just-eat-apple-or-five.html

The beauty about mono-eating is that it allows digestion to happen a lot easier = the body would not need to expend so much energy on digestion = more energy can be expended on other bodily functions (e.g. detoxification, cleansing) = the body gets ‘cleaned’ (pimples and such may come up as the toxins from inside surfaces).

One of the more famous mono-meal diets is…

THE BANANA ISLAND DIET!!! (which lasts usually from 5 – 10 days)

If You’re interested, You may read up a little on this diet and all of its advantages on these linked pages:

http://thebananagirl.com/my-trip-to-banana-island.php

http://www.rawsomehealthy.com/banana-island-experience1/

7. Fun at the Grocery Store

I’m still getting used to how NEAT and ORGANISED the grocery stores in Europe are. It is a norm to have a WHOLE store dedicated to a specific diet (s.g. Veganz for Vegans!! #wirliebenleben) or a store being dedicated to serving strictly organic produce (e.g. Basic Bio (“Bio” is translated to “Organic” in English)). It makes life so much easier!

I thought it couldn’t get any better than this, but it did. Basic Bio released an overview/ list of ALL THEIR VEGAN PRODUCTS to make it easier for Vegans to navigate their shelves (as though the “Vegan” tags weren’t enough). :’) It’s such a sweet gesture and it’s so heart-warming how they are so respectful of the various diets that their customers live by.

8. Things I don’t understand:

a) How people could bear to hurt a fellow human, be it physically or verbally
b) Why superiority/ inferiority exists among people/ between Man and animals
c) How some people could have the heart to put their own happiness before others’
d) Why some people are considered beautiful and others are not; who decides who/ what is beautiful and who/ what is not?
e) Why people let grades determine their intelligence
f) Why people fall in love with their eyes
g) Why a large majority of food chains do nothing to ensure that their customers are properly nourishing their selves, but rather do everything to ensure profits – can’t a world where a balance between the two exist?
h) How it is considered ‘okay’ to consume cows/ sheep/ chickens/ fish/ etc., yet ‘not okay’ to consume dogs/ cats/ hamsters/ etc.
i) Why spotted bananas get thrown away 😦

9. Loving Oneself ≠ Narcissism

Love yourself first and everything else falls into line. You really have to love yourself to get anything done in this world. – Lucille Ball

This was a lovely video I chanced upon in YouTube, titled “You’re More Successful Than You Realize”. It is a social experiment which clearly proves how immensely critical we are of ourselves and how we dismiss our successes while acknowledging our failures.

It shouldn’t be the other way around either though (acknowledging successes and dismissing failures). We need to acknowledge failures too to be able to learn from them and better ourselves. The key is simply to be open to failures & take it in constructively rather than critically.

What lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters compared to what lies within us. – Ralph Waldo Emerson

To live life with a lack of belief/ faith in oneself is equal to living life with the brakes constantly engaged. How can one move forward and take in all that life has to offer?

Self-care is never a selfish act—it is simply good stewardship of the only gift I have, the gift I was put on earth to offer to others. – Parker Palmer

I found a couple of great sources of self-love boosters which really did it for me. I hope they’d prove to be something useful for You as You trudge along life.

FullyRawKristina’s Top 10 Affirmations for Self-Love

“When you say an affirmation you are sending a message to your unconscious mind and the universe. You are focussing your attention to what you want, rather than what you don’t want and your unconscious mind and the universe will then go towards bringing to you that which you are asking for.

It may sound too good to be true, but it works as long as you practice! Your unconscious mind doesn’t know the difference between your reality and your imagination. Affirmations are a great way of re-programming and focussing your mind so you can eliminate negative patterns of behavior. When you know how to work the unconscious mind, you can do so much with it.

Self love is something which we should all be working towards. Without self love you will find that you will always be looking externally for a solution to the way you feel. All negative states point to a lack of self love.”

Source: http://www.fullyraw.com/top-10-affirmations-for-self-love/

Do have a look at the link above! That’s where You’ll find the 10 affirmations. :’)

The Thriving Life’s 5-Day Wellness

Join the free “5-Day Wellness Challenge” challenge to hit the reset button and fall in love with life.

Here’s what the challenge offers:

  • Daily emails with a new wellness tip + easy ideas to incorporate it into your life
  • Email support during the challenge
  • Ongoing regular Love Notes to keep you inspired on your path of wellness

Source: http://the-thriving-life.com

Click on the link above to sign up for this delightful challenge. ♥

When you recover or discover something that nourishes your soul and brings joy, care enough about yourself to make room for it in your life. – Jean Shinoda Bolen

Get this mantra into Your head:

YOU DESERVE TO BE LOVED!!
As much as any other person deserves to be loved.

10. Angels in the Form of Friends

A friend’s Uncle owning an organic-based Aveda Salon led me to getting offered a free hair treatment (I chose to get free Beach Waves on my head of hair!!) done by one of the Salon’s students, Amadeus (this is for practice before his final exam before he becomes a professional barber). Everyone was so kind and welcoming about it, and I felt simply at home in the midst of such passionate and cheery individuals. :’) If any of You ever drop by Munich and would like to freshen up Your hairdo, do drop by Disini!! I find it so cool how ‘Disini’ is a Malaysian/ Indonesian word which literally means ‘Right Here’ – to bring across the idea that ‘right here’ in the salon is where the customers can feel like home; Home is ‘right here’!

Another friend finding 3 packets of Medjool Dates during his spring-cleaning led me to walking into class one day to be greeted with…

“Ah Stefanie, I have something for You. I was cleaning the kitchen cupboards yesterday and when I saw these, I knew right away who would like them. It’s been a while since I’ve eaten Dates and well I don’t fancy them that much. You could have them if You’d like.”

It was such a sweet gesture and now as I snack on these Dates while typing out this post, I can’t help but let out a little smile as I muse over the kindness that exists in this world we live in.

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Thank You Yun Wei & Robert😇

11. Breakfast Musings

I can’t get used to the fact that I can look out of the window and enjoy breath-taking views on a daily basis as I have my breakfast. I’m humbled to be in the presence of such beauty.

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 These photos were taken only a couple of minutes apart!

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There are no constants in life, ah wait, the only constant in life is change. With every passing moment, things change and I guess… so do we – in response to the changes around us?

Some changes look negative on the surface, but you will soon realize that space is being created in your life for something new to emerge. – Eckhart Tolle

I read an article recently which I found very thought provoking and without a doubt inspiring. Its title is The Only Thing Constant in Life is Change and it is part of The Awakened Heart Project.

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