Exactly One Year Later…

This is my 52nd blog post. It’s been exactly one year since I began 365livefoods on July 1, 2012. The first post was entitled “A Journey of a 1000 miles begins with a single step!”:

Who knows how I’ll feel June 30, 2013, 365 days from now. I commit to taking this journey one day at a time, and focus on staying in the moment! The purpose of this blog is to serve as a form of accountability to help me stay committed. What better way to start this! Maybe I can get a few people to join me on this journey.

These are words written in my first post. I didn’t know then how I would feel at this moment! My mission evolved over the course of this year. I was not successful at eating raw foods, but I did learn a few things. Surveying throughout the year’s posts I’ve written about everything from issues on water to following your bliss to GenXers.

I really like writing and sharing these posts. I’m proud of my consistency in posting. I wasn’t beholden to any contracts that would force me to post, yet I wrote anyway. I allowed the blog to evolve and hopefully wrote on topics that were interesting to others aside from myself.

So what comes next?

If you’ve read this blog with any regularly you would have read about my goal to successfully open a natural food store in Houston, Texas. I will transition this blog to my endeavors with Organic Soul Foods. My goal over the course of this week is to remake this blog page. Thanks to all who joined me on this journey of self discovery.

until next week,

lillieth

Spirals

On Sundays I watch Super Soul Sunday on OWN network. The guest this Sunday was Karen Armstrong. She is a former nun and a leading authority on religion and spirituality. Armstrong has a memoir entitled The Spiral Staircase. Spiral is used as a metaphor for life. Often we think we’re not progressing in life, but actually we’re spiralling upwards.

In Wake Up World’s “Ancient Spirals – What do they mean?” The Spiral is a sacred symbol that reminds us of our evolving journey in life. When used as a personal talisman, the Spiral helps consciousness to accept the turnings and changes of life as it evolves. The acceptance of change is one of the greatest freedoms a human can experience, putting consciousness in the present moment where the power of creation is condensed. On a larger scale, using this symbol assures all beings are reminded of their inward and outward evolution, a balanced and centred state of mind. On water, it carries the power to flow and change.

Essentially this week’s post is just a reminder that even when we think we’re going in circles or worse yet just standing still we’re steadily moving towards or hopes and dreams.

Until next Sunday,

lillieth

Growing Pains

Here lately I’ve been fixated on changes needed to live my best life ever. In the Follow Your Bliss post, I wrote about the challenges some Generation Xers are having coping with the economic demands of today. My remedy was for us to follow our bliss. In the 20th century there was an ongoing battle to expand and redefine who was allowed to have the best of life, i.e. the women’s rights movement, the Civil Rights’ movement. People tired of narrow definitions of who was allowed to have the American Dream. Throughout the 20th century there have been people who championed for everyday people realizing their dreams. Self-help gurus such as Napoleon Hill, Stephen Covey, Norman Vincent Peale, Iyanla Vanzant, Deepak Chopra, and Dennis Kimbro are examples of people who worked/ and are still working to help us redefine what is possible in our lives. In the 90s I believe the spiritual transition to believe you can have your heart’s desire culminated with Oprah’s Change Your Life series.

The growing pain some of us Generation Xers have is making the transition from what I perceive as the 20th century way of thinking in which once we reach adulthood we are a finished product; to the 21st century way of thinking in which we are all works in progress. We have to realize we can’t allow our skill set to become outdated assuming that what we learned in college is all we ever need to know. We have to approach our lives as if it’s a science experiment in which we are constantly researching ways to improve our lives. We, Generation Xers, can successfully navigate these changes if we accept the inevitability of change and stay current.

I hope my thoughts in this post are not too “all over the place”. These are just streams of thought I’ve been mulling over for the past few months. Thanks for reading.

Until next Sunday,

lillieth

Why?

This week I’m reading the book The American Way of Eating by Tracie McMillan.  It’s an exposé of the American food system. It’s a first person account of the author’s travails working in the fields as a farmworker in California, a stocker at Walmart in Michigan, and at Appleby’s in Brooklyn. The book has been eye-opening in expected and unexpected ways.

“And anyone slogging through the depths of our economy on minimum wage or less, whatever their job, knows that their survival depends less on their own individual fortitude than the community of people they’re able to draw around them for support.” p. 234

This quote articulates an answer to a question I have gotten a few times: Why do you want to open a natural food store in the black community in Houston, Texas? The quote implies that we are meant to be our brothers keepers, and to whom much is given much is required. It gave me words to explain why the location of the store is as important as the contents of the store.

Don’t you love when reasons are given to you for questions you did not know you didn’t have the answer too! 🙂

Until next Sunday,

lillieth

Finding My Life’s Rhythm

I just celebrated a birthday this past week. I’m at an age when stereotypically a woman starts worrying about aging. Funny thing happened though, instead of feeling old I felt/feel empowered! These past six months I have been focusing on launching Organic Soul Foods and it has ordered my life in indescribable ways. This weekend I came up with a name for this feeling. It’s my life’s rhythm! My life steps are ordered. With each step on this journey, what I need comes to me. Experiences just flow. There’s something about being blessed with a life work that gives my life substantive meaning. It’s the honor of my life to be endowed with this calling to bring SOUL (sustainable, organic, unrefined, and local) foods to my community.

Until next Sunday,

lillieth

Finding Your Voice

Intuition is the spiritual faculty that does not explain, it simply points the way. – Florence Scoval Schinn

Eating raw foods, Organic Soul Foods, vegetarianism, Christianity, Baptist, teacher, knitting, etc: my lifestyle choices! Lifestyle choices represent what we want our biography to encompass when we become “dust to dust”! It also represents our voice in the world. Follow a script or create our own script for our life is the question that we answer subconsciously or consciously by our lifework. “Scripts” have been written for humanity through cultural expectations, things humans are expected to do as we age, i.e. go to college, get married, have children… The scripts change depending on nationality, religion, race, or gender.  

This week I have had a stream of thoughts about what is significant about creating my own path in life. Why go against the grain? Why not do what society expects? For me the only conclusion I can come too is that creating my own script in life makes my life feel more authentic. I feel as if God created me for a definite purpose, uniquely designed just for me. I feel as if I am listening to the voice of God, and  guided by the will of God. It requires me to have faith in my choices, even when others say differently. Truthfully I find it to be a more interesting, engaging way to live.

Thanks for reading my ramblings this week! 🙂

Until next Sunday,

lillieth

Resurrection

Christians around the world are celebrating the resurrection of Jesus this Easter Sunday. Today I’d like to resurrect the original reason I began this blog: to eat raw foods for 365 days. Currently one of my sister friends is on a juice fast. Her commitment has brought back those original feelings I had that sparked my desire to eat raw foods.

Self reflection is powerful! I was asked for some tips to enhance a juice fast. The first thing that came to mind was the Boy Scouts’ motto: Be Prepared! To be successful with any endeavor, most especially a change in eating habits, you must be prepared. Eating is such a visceral experience that any changes to your routine can cause all sorts of havoc if you’re not prepared for it. As I reflect on my attempt at eating raw foods, through reading my first blog posts, there was one glaring fact. I was NOT prepared for the shift to eating raw foods. I ask myself why I was not prepared and how I did not realize it.

I underestimated what it meant to be prepared. I bought food equipment, gathered recipes, attended classes and potlucks all in an effort to create a community and have the tools to be able prepare a variety of raw foods. Where I fell short was in my household. Having personal space is required to eat a raw foods lifestyle. What I found is that my household was/is out of order. Currently my household has been in transition for nearly a year now. I underestimated how not having my personal space conducive to eating raw foods has been a major impediment. It stopped me from being adequately prepared for the shift.

As my fifth grade teacher used to always say: knowing is half the battle. Today I acknowledge what has made me unprepared for eating raw foods. So, the first order of business is getting my personal space in order to eat raw foods. I don’t put any time limit on it, just as long as I am actively working towards the goal of getting my personal space in order. Though this finding throws my whole timeline out of whack, my overall goal is to eat raw foods not adhere to a time table.

Until next Sunday,

lillieth

P.S. Since most of my blog posts are food-related I thought I’d be remiss if I didn’t take a few lines to recognize that today is Cesar Chavez’s birthday. Chavez was a farm labor organizer and “led the first successful farm-workers union in the U.S. He won industry-wide labor contracts in American agriculture,” according to James Harrington in the Houston Chronicle.  Check out www.cesarechavezfoundation.org for more information about Cesar Chavez’s life.

Tears

Keeping with the theme of water I thought I’d share an excerpt from Acts of Faith by Iyanla Vanzant, dated March 21st.

I cry out with my whole heart. -Psalm 119:145

Water purifies. Water nurtures. Water is the healing force of the universe. Water cleanses. Water corrodes. Water refreshes. It is the conduit of growth, protection and maintenance. Crying produces salt water. It purges, protects and expands the spirit. Crying is a release, a cleansing, an expression. However, we must learn to cry with an agenda. Are you crying to release, to purify, to cleanse? Are you angry, frightened, worried or elated? We may cry because of a particular situation, but there is underlying emotion we really need to express. When done properly crying brings clarity and healing to the body and spirit. It can be a refreshing experience, so do it as often as you like. The moment the tears start to flow, just write down your agenda.

– When I cry with an agenda, my needs are met.

This whole post has been an excerpt from Acts of Faith by Iyanla Vanzant.

Until next Sunday,

lillieth

Benefits of Water

I know there are tomes written about water and its significance and benefits. I know I don’t have anything new to add to the subject, but I’d like to take a few lines to emphasize the importance of prioritizing water daily. It’s important that we each plan our day to include water. It may sound trivial, but it is essential to quantify how much water we’re in-taking daily. Water’s health benefits can’t be overstated. Here’s a list of reasons/ benefits of drinking a sizeable amount of water daily.

1) Our body is made up of about 60% water and needs to be replenished daily.

2) Drinking 8 to 10 8-ounce glasses of water daily helps replenish water loss.

3) It’s reported that people who drink sufficient amounts of water daily helps regulate their metabolism.

4)  Drinking enough water also helps with overeating, often our body is thirsty when we think its hungry.

5) Water keeps skin, hair and nails looking supple and hydrated.

If you want more reasons to prioritize daily water intake please reference the article “6 Reasons to Drink Water” on WebMD: http://www.webmd.com/diet/features/6-reasons-to-drink-water

Until next Sunday,

lillieth

P.S. Happy St. Patrick’s Day! I value any holiday that is symbolized by my favorite color, green. 🙂