Monday, September 26, 2011

A New Technique in the Tool Box

When Aimee told me she wanted me to blog, I said "what?  You know that's your thing.  I don't do that."
Well, as you can see, after gentle arm twisting, here I am, with my first portion of the blog.
I went to the Aroma Touch class held in Troy, MI on September 24.  When I left, I was certified in the technique, but more than that, I experienced the most fantastic "relaxed intensity" after the technique I gave and received.
This technique involves layering a series of oils on your spine from the waist up, then on your feet or hands.   You do this by dropping a specific pattern of a series of 8 oils on the spine, which ends by placing the body in a state of homeostasis [the natural balance of body systems and health].  This occurs by working with the meridian points on the back and reflexology points on the feet and/or hands.
There are four areas that Aroma Touch addresses, in order they are:
  1. Stress Management
  2. Immune Enhancement
  3. Decreasing Inflammation
  4. Homeostasis
The aroma layering is truly magnificent.  The person giving and receiving the treatment are both benefitted.  You are both left with a “sunshine face and spirit”, as seen on all that participated in the class.
Aroma Touch is a technique that can be shared with all of your friends, family, pets, etc.  Please feel free to leave a comment in the comment section if you want to learn more and I will get back with you.  Try it, you’ll like it!
Aimee gets her first treatment tomorrow.  She can fill you in on her experiences after that.


Transitioning with Tomatoes and Aroma Touch

As I sit here, writing longhand with my purple pen, I can smell a fabulous aroma of clove, cinnamon and oranges.  I can even taste the flavors faintly, even though I haven't eaten anything with those flavors in it lately.
With cold and flu season gearing up for its first punch of the season, I rubbed some On Guard oil on the palms of my hands, and dabbed a bit under my nose.  With all of the sneezing and coughing going on around me at work, I don’t want to risk carrying germs home.
I must say that I am TOTALLY excited.  Within the next few days, I get to experience my first Aroma Touch treatment!  Deb just earned her certification in this technique of applying layers of certified pure therapeutic grade doTerra essential oils.  (The amazing orange-spicy scent on my hands is one of the 8 oils used in this technique.)  I wasn’t able to make it to the training because of other commitments, but at least I get to get a fabulous treatment soon, and I am learning the basics with an eye toward certification soon.  I’ll let Deb tell you more.
This has been a busy couple of weeks in our household.  With the cold weather barging in suddenly, dropping temperatures almost to the frost point, there was a scramble to load up o as many tomatoes and peppers as possible from our beautiful organic garden.

Once they were harvested, we had several different types of peppers and tomatoes, washed and taking up residence in various colanders, bowls, buckets, and even in the dish drainer!  We spent a couple of days up to our elbows in dripping juicy tomatoes as we peeled, blended, chopped and canned mixed vegetable juice and beautiful salt free tomatoes to use over the winter.  (Of course, we made a huge pot of amazing Pepper Sauce too, but that has been frozen by the quart this year, instead of being canned.)
To use up some of the bits that either didn’t make it into jars, or from jars that didn’t seal during processing, I made a delicious beef vegetable soup.  When I put all the ingredients into the My Fitness Pal database, my soup was only a little over 200 calories per serving!  It was even better when I warmed it up for lunch at work a couple of days later.
The garden is still not done being put to bed.  After a couple cold nights, the temperatures perked back up.  We still have some tomatoes ripening, peppers growing (and blooming) and some herbs waiting for harvest.
Between the two of us, Deb and I have lost 80 pounds in the past 6-8 months, divided evenly.  When people ask how we are doing it, although we each have different approaches, the primary thing has been that we are both PAYING ATTENTION to what we eat.  I log all of my food and exercise (yes, gardening counts, just as well as yoga and walking) into a phone app called My Fitness Pal.  It calculates my calorie needs for the day based on my goals, activity levels and current weight/height  This app and website helps to keep me focused and committed to paying attention, and I have met new friends along the way from all over the world- Hong Kong, Russia, England, and all parts of the United States.  We are all working toward getting healthier-each in our own way.
vegetables.html.jpgDeb has been using the “plate method”.  She doesn’t log anything, but as a rule of thumb (or plate), she mentally divides her plate into quarters.We bought 7” plates with funny blue monkeys on them to use most days instead of our 9-10” stoneware plates that we had been using.  One quarter of the blue monkey has protein on it, one quarter has a carb and one half (2/4)  is covered in vegetables (potatoes and corn don’t count!  They go in the carb corner).
This summer has been beautiful in terms of the food we’ve been able to grow or find at the Flint Farmer’s Market.  Eating a rainbow of foods is one way to insure a wide range of nutrients, so we have been eating a rainbow:  red cherries;  orange carrots;  yellow tomatoes;  green onions;  blue blueberries;  purple mulberries;  white garlic and black beans.  (We’ve even slipped in an occasional brown brownie or golden butter pecan ice cream along the way.)
Neither Deb nor I is perfect in any measure of the term, but we are humans In Process of becoming better through Living MindFully in the present with eyes wide open to the world around us.  Each day is a new opportunity to learn and grow, no matter what challenges or ruts we face.


Being MindFull of our Vision to Promote Healing

Our Vision is to create a healing and retreat center where all kinds of people can come to experience a sense of community, healing, self awareness and peace.  We hope to offer different paths toward wholeness for those who come, with a variety of complimentary healing modalities, including aromatherapy, Reiki and massage; classes including meditation, diversity training and yoga; and places to be at peace with oneself, such as an on grounds labyrinth, retreat cabins, gardens and walking trails.
We envision that this center will be a non-exclusive community where healing can occur on many different levels- certainly the mind/body/spirit levels, but even beyond that.  We hope to nurture a community where we pay attention to environmental concerns, personal growth and community building.  
Humans and their animals will have the opportunity to utilize the skills of those at the center.
We believe that everyone who comes for healing and solace also has something to offer to the community, be they there for a day or for a month.  Children and elders alike have gifts to share.  
Although we have held this vision for several years, there have been many road blocks to reaching this dream.  We have each had serious health challenges along the way, which seemed to crop up and steer us off track for a while, before we take hold of the reins again and get back into view of our chosen path.  We have even found that these roadblocks tend to be more like classrooms along the route, where we learn new things about ourselves and new ways to be in the world.  Of course, as with any endeavor, money is always an obstacle as well, but thus far it has been more about health issues and time constraints.  We believe that it will happen in the time and place that it is meant to be.
Even hough the healing center is not yet a physical reality, we are both committed to empowering people to help themselves through learning to live MindFully.  We hope through this blog to nurture the spirit of the healing center, even if the physical reality has yet to manifest.  Through this blog, we will offer various meditations, book and music recommendations & internet links that may be of interest.  (We have recently become enamored with DoTerra essential oils, and have become independent product consultants, so you will see several links to various parts of our website there, but also many other resources that we find useful, informative or interesting.)  We will share some of our stories of moments, people and places that have helped us grow in our journey toward health and Living MindFully, a journey we are still on and a journey we invite you to take with us.  We also want to hear your stories, with the hope that we will grow from your experiences as well as ours.

Deb and Aimee