Wednesday, December 31, 2014


Quite often, I find that many people are at opposing extremities when it comes to New Year's resolutions—either they are utterly enthusiastic or deeply daunted by the task. I commend those who are excited by the goals on a new slate, but also understand the overwhelming sense of panic that resolutions can bring about for some people. The reason why resolutions can be panic-stricken is because more often than not they revolve around + focus on lack or failure—losing weight, exercising more, spending less, sleeping more, etc. Although these can be healthy goals for some, they neither highlight positivity nor nurture the strengthening or gratitude for what is already present. 

This year, I invite you to sit down with yourself, quiet down, + be still. Allow yourself to connect to your soul, your heart of hearts, + the Divine—whatever that may be for you—and ask for guidance. What needs, desires, or paths arise for you? What do you connect with and what is your immediate gut feeling?

In order to get a clearer sense, I always rely on manifestation or a little ritual of declaring my heart to the Universe, letting it go, + allowing the Universe to do its magic. 

I begin this process by making two lists: RELEASING + MANIFESTING . . .

In the first list, I write down anything + everything that no longer serves me or my life anymore. Before the New Year, this is also a good place to write down past memories, grievances, or grudges that block you that you are ready to let go of + forgive. I like to rip each individual riddance into strips and burning them outside wit some palo santo wood burning alongside me, but do whatever floats your hippie little boat!

For the manifestation list, write down and declare whatever your heart desires—do not hold back on anything by thinking it's too large of a wish as we cannot predict the doors that the Universe will open for us. Wholeheartedly trust that the Universe has your back. Visualise these wishes coming true. Close your eyes, smile, + see yourself move through the events, the rupture of joy, + the accomplishment. Feel the vibration + the sense of natural high . . .

Now, in the words of Idina Menzel, Let it go . . . At this point, I wish that if my manifestations are meant to unfold + are going to serve me for the best, may they be so. I trust that all will come to me in perfect time and harmony with no harm to anyone or anything. I also like to compliment this part with a little gratitude list for all the events, people, + things that have made this past year a magical one. This list can be short or long; think deeply about what has touched your soul + supported you throughout the year. Allow your soul, your body, your bones to soak in the gratitude and blessings. Step into the New Year with its light . . .

May your New Year be even better than the last. May it be filled with an abundance of happiness, health, success, + joy . . .

Tuesday, December 30, 2014


This recipe is a favourite adapted version of a recipe by the lovely The Kitchy Kitchen. It is so utterly creamy and delightful, even in the cold winter months. I often don't enjoy cold treats during the Winter as I'm already constantly freeing, but the coconut base makes it a heavier sorbet—almost like a dairy-free ice cream—which in turn feels a little more nourishing than other cold desserts. 

Coconut is also a great source of saturated fats that fortify, tone, + firm skin cells, plumping them from the inside out. Boasting with vitamins such as Vitamins C, E, B vitamins as well as iron, selenium, calcium, and phosphorus, coconut is a perfect skin food. It provides anti-aging benefits as well as moisture that is so desperately needed with the drying Winter air. Scoop out to your heart's and stomach's content + nourish your cells . . .

COCONUT SORBET|raw, vegan, paleo
1 cup gum-free coconut mylk
1 cup homemade almond mylk
1 cup gum-free coconut cream 
¼ cup coconut sugar
¾ cup toasted coconut or homemade | toast unsweetened coconut for 10 minutes at 350 °F
½ teaspoon Quantum pink salt
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
Sprinkling of cinnamon, cacao nibs, + tocos | optional

Don't fret if you don't have an ice cream maker! Here is a guide by David Leibovitz to making ice cream without an ice cream maker . . .

Combine all the ingredients in a large pot and bring it to a simmer over medium heat for 15 minutes. You could strain this mixture, but I like keeping the coconut chips in. Let it cool down and place in the refrigerator overnight. In the morning, process the mixture in your ice cream maker as per the manufacturer's guide. Transfer to a glass container + freeze for at least two hours. I love serving it with raw cacao nibs and a dusting of cinnamon + tocos, which provide extra radiance-boosting and connective tissue-supporting vitamin E! Enjoy . . . 

photo courtesy of Domaine

Monday, December 29, 2014


As much as I am a complete elf when it comes to the Holiday season, I still feel drained from the hustle bustle of all of it in the end. I end up feeling something like this. In order to lighten my brain back up and increase mental flow, there are a variety of herbs I reach for during such fatiguing times. These herbs not only soothe anxiety but fine-tune your brain + body to fight against the damage of stress. Brain waves are toned + the body is put into a deep state of rejuvenation . . .

1 ST. JOHN'S WORT | I just recently made an extremely potent bottle of this as a tincture and fell into the most dreamy sleep the other night after taking it. St. John's Wort is a great herb if you experience issues falling asleep if taken thirty minutes to an hour before rest. This makes it a perfect replacement for sleep-aids, which might drop you into sleep but completely wreck havoc on your body's sleep cycle. Such is the case even with melatonin, which is not a sleep hormone but a hormone with a variety of physiological functions. It should not be used as a sleep-aid, which is a topic I will delve into in another blog post coming up soon . . .
2 ASHWAGANDA | This is one of my go-to herbs as well as an Ayurvedic favourite. It is one of the most potent adaptogens and it helps the body cope with not only stress but the physiological ailments that often accompany it such as backaches, menstrual problems, and insomnia. It's also rich in minerals that deeply support the thyroid and sleep cycles.
3 ASTRAGALUS |Another herb that I recently made into a powerful little bottle of tincture, Astragalus is key for times of stress and muscle support + bone maintenance. This support makes it a perfect herb to take to recover the body not only from the tension of the Holiday season but also from athletic activity. According to Taoist traditional medicine, this is one of the most powerful Qi tonics available to strengthen the overall system, metabolism, immune response, + promote homeostasis of all the body's functions.
4 LEMON BALM |I used to grow lemon balm in a big pot over the summer and loved putting it into fresh, summery salads. So, I was ecstatic when I learned the stress-reducing + memory-boosting properties of this herb with the exorbitant amounts of it that I was consuming. Summery salads are not the only way to enjoy this herb, though. A simple tisane of it along with some fresh mint leaves is the perfect Holiday meal antidote. It helps alleviate indigestion, bloating, + promotes a restful sleep with which the previous two problems can interfere.
5 MUCUNA PRURIENS |I have so much love for this tonic. I made hot cacao with it every single day during finals, enjoying its caramely + earthy notes.  I believe it was one of the few things that supported me through the hectic times. It is a bio-available source of L-dopa, which is an amino acid that forms into the neurotransmitter dopamine in the brain. It elevates the mood, boosts memory, + regulates sleep patters. It tames + soothes the nervous system in such a powerful way that it is even used as a treatment for Parkinson's disease. 
6 REISHI |I have previously written about this magical mushroom [not that kind!] in immunity posts such as this, but Reishi is also a favourite of mine to combat daily stress. This mushroom is often referred to as the "Mushroom of Immortality" as it fights free radicals + regulates the body's response to stress. It also is touted to have the ability to open the heart, soothe the spirit + nerves, promote grounding, + increase spirituality. 
7 CHAMOMILE | Often consumed in tea form, chamomile is one of the most common and safe options to relieve stress. I find two teabags of chamomile to be the easiest way to wind-down after a long day before I slip into bed. I love this tea as it also has tulsi in it, which is another potent healing herb that literally puts me into a higher level of meditative + relaxed level of consciousness. Pure bliss . . . 

Photo via Pinterest, source unknown

Wednesday, December 24, 2014


Whoops! I have been quite the busy little bee the past couple of days with the end of the semester + a little NY adventure with two golden girls! You might have caught glimpses of it if you follow me on Instagram. I will be on a little much-needed hiatus with friends + family for the Holiday season, but will be back to blogging December 29. Until then, I'm wishing you + yours love and light this Holiday season . . .

background design by Kelly Wearstler 

Tuesday, December 16, 2014


I am absolutely over the moon about these sprays from Agnes Baddoo, who also creates exquisite roomy bags that are perfect for bag ladies such as myself. The bags are handcrafted in Los Angeles, California + the leather is pure butter. This one is definitely on the tippy-top of my Christmas wish list. It was inspired by a forty-year-old bag Agnes's mother had used . . .

The sprays are a handmade blend of therapeutic grade essential oils, purified water, + colloidal silver. I love to carry it around when I'm off to class or to the gym. The highly bioavailable form of colloidal silver in these sprays is a powerful yet natural way to combat bacteria, fungus, + virus on contact. It gently detoxes the body + strengthens the immune system. 

Each essential oil used has different properties + not to mention a divine scent . . .
Spray №3 has top notes of geranium + rosewood and has a bright, floral, + invigorating scent. Geranium is the perfect essential oil for nurturing the kidneys, improving circulation, alleviating symptoms of hormonal imbalances, reducing inflammation and irritation, + reducing blood pressure. 

Spray №9 has top notes of rose and sandalwood and has a grounding scent. Sandalwood is one of my favourite essential oils +  a treasure within Ayurvedic medicine. It has a plethora of benefits such as anti-infectious, anti-inflammatory, + anti-cancer properties. It is high in sesquiterpenes, which is a chemical that stimulates the pineal gland in the brain. This allows it to penetrate the brain + stimulate a deep sense of calm. This makes it the perfect blend for meditation and work as it clears the mind + allows for unparalleled concentration. 

Spray №11's top notes are rosemary + frankincense. Rosemary is one of my go-to essential oils in times of suppressed immunity or frigid weather. It improves circulation + is a potent immunity-booster. So, it makes this spray a perfect choice for use in public spaces such as the gym, workplace, or the classroom. Frankincense is the perfect addition to Rosemary as it balances it with its sweet + balsamic aroma. It's a great essential oil to support visualisation + overcome times of stress. Perfect for before a good night's sleep . . .
Pick whichever [or all!] sprays + use them everyw'air as I do!

image courtesy of Tomboy Style via Agnes Baddoo

Saturday, December 13, 2014


With the beginning of exam period + the last couple of days of frigid weather, I decided to create a little wintry playlist to swiftly move my mind + ears through the season. I listen to this playlist often, from during my yoga practise to when flipping through pages of art history notes. I hope you enjoy it as much as I do + share on with others // make sure to follow it as I update it frequently . . .


Friday, December 12, 2014


In creating a Holiday gift guide, I most certainly have not forgotten the gentlemen. I actually quite enjoy shopping for men's gifts, which some women find to be daunting sometimes [just as some men find shopping for women to be the same]. Here is a gift guide that will put a grin on the face of any man in your life, from your brother to your bearded beau . . .

1 CANVAS & LEATHER RUCKSACK | This handsome rucksack is the perfect companion for his camping trip . . .
2 PALO SANTO WOOD | The perfect incense of holy wood to make his room or house smell woodsy + like a campfire
3 SFOGLINI BAGEL PASTA | Although he might not admit it, this pasta with the flavor of an "everything" bagel might just become his new obsession
4 FIELD & CAMP SOAP |Keeping with the camping + outdoors trend, this soap will take his inner mountain man back to the campsite
5 LEATHER NOTEBOOK | This beautifully crafted + refillable notebook is the ultimate office + class companion
6 MERINO WOOL BLANKET | To cosy up under at the cabin or the frigid outdoors
7 DOPP KIT | An up cycled kit to keep his grooming products organised
8 WHISKY STONES | To keep his liquor cold + cool at the same time . . .
9 D.S. & DERGA FOR J.CREW | This is such a deep + divine scent—one of my favourite colognes in addition to the classic Burberry London
10 CASHMERE HAT | To keep his head warm throughout the Northeastern winter
11 LEATHER FLASK | A leather  flask for when he wants to sip on some of that whiskey in style . .  .
12 EDC BIKE KIT | An upgrade from the clunky + ugly carabineers that he might be tugging around that also comes with many useful tools . . .  
13 SOLID BRASS MONEY CLIP | To keep his money safe . .  

Wednesday, December 10, 2014


Anyone who knows me well knows that I love + live in anything cosy. My best friend even once remarked that if she were to describe me in one word, cosy would be it. Some friends have a running joke about me + those Bigelow Cosy Chamomile tea bags . . .

So, it's no surprise that the holiday gift guide that I have curated is all that I consider warm + cosy. Everything is soothing to the touch—cashmere wraps + silk pyjamas—calming to the senses—crystals + incense—and elegantly minimalistic—lulu frost rings + Eberjey intimates. Here are some gifts that will get anyone cosied up with a smile this Holiday season . . .

1 CASHMERE WRAP | This wrap by Equipment is an ultimate luxury item—a girl can dream! It's crafted from 100% cashmere + comes in beautiful, simple colours. The perfect travel companion, it can be used as a wrap or even as a blanket.
 ARIZONA BIRKENSTOCKS | I have had my eyes on these for over a year, but haven't made the plunge predominantly because my family thinks they are so horrendous—my sister firmly believes that a twenty-something woman should not be wearing such man-repelling shoes. I beg to differ and so do Daria Werbowy + Alexa Chung . . .
3 CASHMERE + SILK SOCKS | Another luxury item but one that I feel can be considered a necessity after four years of enduring MA winters. These would have been perfect when I had snow inside my Bean Boots + almost froze my little toes off last year . . .
4 TINK + TIGER SILK PYJAMA SHIRT |I am absolutely over the moon with Tink + Tiger's collection. They're beautifully crafted with 100% silk in the United States. Elegant silhouettes + candy colours for 3 a.m. style
5 HARIO COPPER KETTLE | I have always been obsessed with copper kitchen utensils, predominantly because of their healing energetic properties. For anyone who is constantly sipping on herbal teas + tonics as I am, this is the perfect eye candy + gift . . .
6 EBERJEY LACE BRALET | I could go on for days about the beauty, elegance, + comfort that these bralets would invoke in any woman. I can't live without them + ones by Honeydew. They are perfect worn underneath light tissue tees for a subtle yet sexy look . . .
7 MANGANO CRYSTAL | I collect crystals + have so many lying around the house + in my bags to elevate my vibrations, calm my nerves, + attract abundance. This crystal would be a dream to own, but there are many others that don't come with such a hefty price-tag . . . 
8 HANDMADE HORN COMB | Utter, utter, utter beauty that is handmade in Germany by a fourth generation family of comb makers. This comb is a perfect stocking-stuffer for curly and wavy haired people on your gift list . . .
9 LAND BY LAND INCENSE | This Japanese incense is a dream, made with natural ingredients rather than the toxins that most incenses contain. It burns clean + clears the mind
10 ARQUISTE FOR J.CREW | Fragrances are my only vice + have been so since I was a little girl. I have a boxful of perfumes that I have used + collected over the years since the age of seven. I can even recall my first perfume: L'eau de Sonia by Sonia Rykiel [if we don't count my Mustela]. Although my current staples are Calypso St. Barth, Jo Malone, + Elizabeth & James, this one definitely is on my wish list + would be coveted by any other perfume or  art aficionado—it was inspired by Exhibition 31 by 31 women, which was the first all-female women art show exhibited in the United States + curated by Peggy Guggenheim in 1943 . . . 
11 STACKING RINGS | I love having a boxful of these stacking rings to spruce up any simple outfit. They make great little stocking-stuffers!
12 LULU FROST CODE RING | These code rings make my heart go pitter patter! Most definitely another luxury item, these rings would be perfect for that family member or friend who is so effortlessly chic, like former J.Crew designer Marissa Webb, on whom I first saw these gems . . .

Tuesday, December 9, 2014


This Spiritual Smack is a short one of a quote. When we go on a war against ourselves, we not only create a pattern of destruction within our selves but we also live in the past. We allow ourselves to wilt like weeds, dominated by things out of our control and events that have already occurred. So, make it an aim this week to expand your thoughts outward into the present, look forward, + welcome in blooming abundance . . .

Monday, December 8, 2014


There are very few things that I love more than tubers + root vegetables. They provide so much grounding + sustained energy for me during the cold months. When I'm not roasting, boiling, or noshing on these beauties, I also like to juice them. Yes, juicing juicy tubers. Tubers, and more specifically yams, yield a surprising amount of juice and are more nutrient-dense than their counterpart carrots that often take the throne. Juicing allows chockfull of vitamins, anti-oxidants, + minerals packed into yams that can sometimes otherwise overcook to come out. 

Yams are the perfect tuber to balance hormones, mineralise the body, and supercharge the brain. It also boosts libido + is beautifying. Here is a recipe to obtain these harmonising benefits:

YAM JUICE | raw, vegan, paleo
½ large, organic yam, cubed | I use regular sweet potatoes or korean yams
1 inch knob of organic ginger
½ organic pomegranate, outer portion removed
1 organic Pink Lady apple
1 organic orange, skin removed
sprinkle of organic cinnamon

Gather the ingredients + juice, top with cinnamon + a dash of pink salt!

YAM MYLK | raw, vegan, paleo
1 large, organic yam, cubed
1 cup homemade raw pumpkin seed mylk | as I like to call it, mineral mylk
½ banana | you could use frozen if you'd like, but then the mylk won't have as much warming effect on the body
1/2 teaspoon maca | hormone-balancing + libido boosting root vegetable
1 teaspoon lucuma | Peruvian super fruit that provides an ice cream-like flavour
1 tablespoon tocotrienols | one of the ultimate skin foods, boasting with vitamin E
A dash of cinnamon
A dash of Quantum Pink Salt | balances electrolytes

Juice the yam, pour juice + mylk into blender with the rest of the ingredients, blend, + enjoy!

Top photo source unknown + personal photos

Saturday, December 6, 2014


Tonight, December 6, is full moon in Gemini. This lunation is all about locating expansion, comfort, and energy within the shifts of life. It is about finding reprieve within ourselves. I find that this is a difficult thing to do for most people. It requires a gentle pulling of oneself away into quiet solitude to reflect + subtly gather energies. Although this is meant to be a sweet moment, it can feel like selfish act. Demands of work, family, and life draw themselves into the centre stage of our lives. Yes—these are essential parts of our lives and often bring us energy rather than drain it out of us. However, we need to make it a practise to also tend to our own needs, our physical and energetic bodies. If we do not take care of our own selves, we cannot be there to take care of others. 
This new moon vibrates precisely with these notions of self-care. Adjusting to the waves of life that the New Moon in Gemini emphasises requires us to have the adjusted mindset of being there for ourselves as much as we are there for others. Make peace with and within yourself to make peace peace with the flowing, ebbing shifts of life. Celebrate yourself . . .

Here are some astral insights to guide you to a deeper understanding of yourself under the energy of tonight's new moon:

 “The Gemini Full Moon on December 6 is a party Moon. This Full Moon is a brief break from the intense growth and strivingyou have done…”  “The Gemini Full Moon says that it is time to celebrate your life. Celebrate your victories. Even the smallest of accomplishments are worth noting. “When you focus on what is working in your life. This creates a current of positive energy. You are a magnet for good things to flow to you…. “People will want to know your secret for success. In the midst of this chaotic world how are you Always Thriving? You can tell them that it is your attitude for gratitude"

“Real growth is painful at times. Change is the only constant. Growth is optional. “Those who are invested in their personal development are evolving. Squares are a call to action. They represent a turning point in your life. You are changing. Your life, work and relationships are changing“Resistance is futile. Be a change agent. Don’t wait. Initiate. Take action now. Be brave. Take risks. Taking chances can bring you great rewards. “This huge amount of change can be exhausting. Take a moment and catch your breath. Celebrate what you have learned. Celebrate your growth. Celebrate how far you have come. “There is the part of you waiting to be born. You are the one you have been waiting for. You are the savior. Creator works through you and your heart. Step up and be brave. 

[This] Full Moon asks you to hold your beloveds with compassion while releasing any notions of helping, fixing or healing another’s experience
Astral insights gathered by the beautiful Mystic Mama 

Friday, December 5, 2014


It's the final grind of the semester, it's the Holiday season, and it's dark + cold outside—many reasons to feel sluggish, unmotivated, + scattered. 

In times where I feel that fatigue of the season, I reach for Lypo-Spheric™ B Complex Plus.  This powdered alternative to a Vitamin B12 shot is produced using liposomal encapsulation technology, which allows potent B vitamins + minerals to wave through your cell walls and blood-brain barrier intact + ready to charge you with energy. This is unlike B-complex supplements on the market that are taxing for your body + digestive system to absorb, not to mention the usual synthetics and chemicals that are added to such supplements. 

Lypo-Spheric incorporates superior, active forms of B-Vitamins such as Benfotiamine—a fat soluble form of Thiamine [B1]—Methylcobalamin [B12], Niacinamide [B3] and Pyridoxal 5 phosphate + Pyridoxine HCl [B6], selenomethionine as selenium, and a new source of phospholipids. Even better, the formulations is completely non-GMO. 

This supplement is the ultimate energy-booster that provides sustained energy without the energy crash of, say, acid-forming coffee or refined sugars. It allows the body to burn fuel more efficiently, supports stable blood sugar levels, boosts memory: all aspects any student scribbling until the wee hours of the night need. 

It is also one of the most potent anti-aging + regenerating supplements to add to your routine. Lypo-Spheric works directly to block Advanced Glycation End-products (AGE), which can accumulate in the body + lead to impaired tissue function. Advanced Glycation End-products (AGE)   consequently build up in the eyes, organs, nerves, and the skin, leading to a more rapid process of aging. By having this process blocked, the body is able to regenerate its tissues + nerves with more ease. Add that next to your anti-aging serum . . .

BENEFITS | immune boosting • blood-sugar stabilising  memory-boosting • bio-available • cell-activating • skin clearing + strengthening  anti-aging • awakening • joint-supporting • buzzing

photo courtesy of Amanda Chantal Bacon

Thursday, December 4, 2014


Considering that one of my favourite fruits is lychee and my propensity for snacking on chewy dried fruits like dried Turkish white mulberries, my little obsession with the Longan fruit should not come as a surprise. Longan (Euphoria Longan) is an utterly magical fruit that is like the sister of lychee fruit.  The first bite is chewy but then the fruit yields itself to essentially melting in your mouth—eating this fruit is like a dream

It has been used by the Chinese for centuries as a blood tonic, calm the mind, + to support and build energy [Qi] for the Spleen + the heart. Most importantly, it has beauty food to add luster and a glow to the skin from head to tooth. Longans provide healthy gums, teeth, + anti-aging properties. As each serving contains eighty percent of recommended daily intake for vitamin c + polyphenols, it is a powerful aid in combatting free radicals + in preventing cell damage. It also has the ability to improve wound healing, which makes it a great tonic for healing scar tissue. It can be eaten fresh, dried, or in tea form to obtain beauty from the inside out.

Longan is not only a beauty food—it is also a potent energy-enhancer + nerve tonic. By increasing the flow of Qi within the subtle body, longans are capable of alleviating insomnia, difficulty in concentration, + memory retention. It is a miracle fruit for people suffering from blood + Qi deficiency, such as myself, as it targets the accompanying symptoms of anxiety, cold extremities, + fatigue by feeding the blood. It quiets the nerves . . .
Related to beauty, Longan is also a great sex tonic for women. It harmonises the hormones + improves sex drive. Chinese women don't call it the euphoria fruit for no reason . . . 
Here is an aphrodisiac tonic to send blood + nourishment to the skin and all the other right places:

Large kettle of water
A handful of dried Longan fruit
Sweetener to taste | raw honey [once the tea is cooled], stevia, or coconut sugar

Bring a kettle of water to a boil. Once boiled, remove from heat and place the fruits into the kettle + cover. Let it sit for twenty to thirty minutes to allow its magical properties to steep into the water. Serve hot once done or mix in some sweetener + refrigerate for a cooling tea.

                                                                                                      Photography courtesy of Angi Welsch

Tuesday, December 2, 2014


In the hurry of our day-to-day lives, we get sucked into habitual hunching, tensing, and resisting. We pick up that second cup of coffee, run to that next meeting, smile at that stranger, grab lunch with that friend, squeeze in that yoga class, make dinner, and . . .  we’re already climbing back into bed before we know it for yet another day to plow through.
At the wit of a draining day’s end, we realise that our lives have been swallowed whole by our work and by others; we abandon ourselves for the sake of helping others, not realising that we are dishonouring ourselves by brushing our souls off as secondary.
Last weekend I was at my wit’s end as I was plowing through my yoga practice, unconsciously beating myself up physically after a day’s wear of mental exhaustion. Ten minutes in, I paused and collapsed into child’s pose. I had been riding on the last drop of adrenaline left within my body. Having worn off every layer of energy within myself to hand out to others, my body was drained of my self. 
And as I asked for guidance, the Universe shook and vibrated my being in answer with the poem “School Prayer” by Diane Ackerman. The sweet words reminded me to honour my own needs and my soul, and that I cannot be a vessel of love or a ‘healer of misery’ for others if that is not alive within me as my own truth. . .
This week, may your aim be to recognise and honour your needs . . .

image via pinterest, source unknown