Tuesday, May 30, 2017

BEAUTY BITES: ADAPTOGENIC HIBISCUS TISANE LATTÉ

B E A U T Y   B I T E S  |  A D A P T O G E N I C   H I B I S C U S   T E A S A N   L A T T É
A frothy millennial pink floral latté spiked with adaptogens . . .



tisane is an infusion of plants that are stepped like tea but are often sans caffeine. Instead, it is a decoction of herbs, spices, dried or fresh fruits, and other plant materials that are steeped in hot water. Although I often like to create my own blends, I recently had the pleasure of trying the new Numi Holistic Teasans range. These are crafted with not only organic herbs but also adaptogenic plants to increase their medicinal benefits. Their line includes both herbal and caffeinated varieties, which are derived from metabolism- and digestion-boosting yerba maté with energising cocoa and maca as well as guayusa with rosemary & ginger

My favourite is their hibiscus tea blend with rose, elderflower, and warming spices. For someone who always runs cold and is Type-A they-used-to-call-me-anal-girl, this tea is a sweet relief. The cinnamon and clove increase digestive and circulatory heat; rose cools down an overheated mind; and hibiscus flushes the system of accumulated toxins as a diuretic. 

To increase these medicinal benefits, I brew the tea and then blend it with either coconut oil or ghee. According to Ayurvedic Medicine, these healthy fats allow the herbal properties to be driven deeper into the cells. Adding local raw honey is optional but adds further support as t . increases the body's ojas or life force. If you choose to add it, do so with coconut oil only as Ayurvedic Medicine advises against combining ghee and honey.

I N G R E D I E N T S
1 cup Numi Embrace
1 cup plant-based milk, I prefer homemade hemp milk or coconut milk
2 teaspoons coconut oil or ghee
Stevia or raw local honey to taste, optional
For an even creamier latté, add a tablespoon of Tocos or, for a non-vegan option, collagen peptides* 

*These will provide additional anti-aging, skin-evening, and brightening effects


D I R E C T I O N S
Boil water then steep the tea in two cups of water for ten minutes. For a stronger hibiscus flavour, you may use two teabags. 
Heat your preferred milk to an almost boil.
Once steeped, pour the tea and milk along with the rest of the ingredients in a high-speed blender, blend until frothy, serve, and enjoy! I like to decorate mine with edible flowers and crushed rose petals.

Friday, May 26, 2017

CURRENTLY CREASING №14


C U R R E N T L Y   C R E A S I N G
A collection of weekly reads to guide you through your days . . .

1 | Sex toys for women created & powered by women . . 
2 | An incredibly touching and raw account of depression, childbirth, and motherhood by Laura Miller. I've been simmering in her words and those of Jessi Klein in the closing chapter of her book, where she dives into the trials of "trying" (as she calls it, a euphemism for "fucking" or the sad opposite of it). I admire these women for speaking their experience so others may find their voice—to simply hear their own or share it with others.
3 | Naturally-dyed & carefully-sewn children's clothes that'll make you wish you were as cool when you were seven-(AND A HALF!)-years-old.
4 | Coveting this EMPOWERED sweatshirt hand-embroidered by Rwandan women with 100% of proceeds going to benefit education programs in Rwanda and Ghana (thanks to Natalie for this find!)
5 | Big & bold handmade pink mugs so you can scream you're a millennial
6 | A line of quality knitwear carefully crafted in Spain

7 |  The one yoga benefit you've never heard of

8 |Two deals to make your life easier: three free smoothies at Daily Harvest with the code thirlby 
AND 50% off discount when you use the code THIRLBY50 at Care/Of vitamins
9 | Where stress gets stuck in our bodies & how to release it
10 | These satin and again, millennial pink, slides for only $20

the T H O U G H T  O F  T H E  W E E K

"That we find a crystal or a poppy beautiful means that we are less alone, that we are more deeply inserted into existence than the course of a single life would lead us to believe."

—JOHN BERGER

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

BEAUTY BITES: HORMONE-BALANCING HELVA BARS


B E A U T Y   B I T E S  |   H O R M O N E -  B A L A N C I N G   H E L V A   B A R S
A hormone-balancing helva adaptation inspired by my Mediterranean roots, a nod to my late grandmother & reclaiming women's health. Hop on over to Kristin Dahl of Dahl House Nutrition's journal for the recipe!

    Monday, May 22, 2017

    FARMACY: MY TOP 5 SUPPLEMENTS


    F A R M A C Y   |  M Y   T O P   5   S U P P L E M E N T S
    A guide to cutting to the chase with supplements & reaping the most benefits . . .


    s we hone in on our wellness journey, whether that is transitioning from SAD or healing from an autoimmune disorder, supplements loom over us. As if a whole food diet is not enough, we often attempt to cram into every nook of our bodies hyped up vitamins, minerals, superfoods, salts, tinctures, and herbs. These all have their places but they can also lead to a sense of overwhelm—should I be taking that or pop this pill, too? It's also often unnecessary as we should meet our daily required values for essential vitamins and minerals directly from our food.

    However, there are two conditions that I have set where this is not the case. First, there are nutritional compounds that are not factored into the set bodily requirements set by the government. These can optimise our vitality, function, and the even absorption of nutrients from our food intake. These include my top five supplements outlined below. Although they are not necessarily requirements, they have become staples for me in healing enough from an autoimmune disorder, the damage of 10+ years of malnutrition from anorexia, and patellar tendonitis in both of my knees . . . enough to allow me to now train for a marathon. These supplements are restoring my gut microbiome and digestive lining and, as a result, elevating everything from my mood to my libido to my sense of clarity—mind, body, and spirit. 

    Second, despite a thorough diet, our bodies still can fall short. This can be caused by a multitude of factors. Again, many autoimmune disorders cause nutrient malabsorption and thus can lead to vitamin or mineral deficiencies. Seasonal fluctuations, such as less sun exposure, often cause vitamin D deficiency. An exclusively plant-based diet could run the risk of vitamin B deficiencies. Most of us are deficient in magnesium as well, which affect not only the body's musculoskeletal system but our mood as well. This is where Care/Of comes in, which is an innovative vitamin subscription service curated uniquely for you. Once you take a comprehensive test that takes into account your lifestyle beyond eating habits, Care/Of  targets the vitamins and minerals you might benefit from supplementation. You also receive herbal recommendations, such as milk thistle for detoxification or rhodiola for stress support. It's the answer to supplementation without the guesswork—I highly suggest hopping over here to take the quiz and trying it out for a month! I've had a complete lift of brain fog within less than a month into using my blend. Use THIRLBY50 for 50% off your first order here!

    P R O B I O T I C S 
    This is the probiotic I swear by as it's soil-based and inoculates your gut rather than simply passing through it unlike other conventional or even high-end probiotics. Having a healthy digestion and gut micro biome is one of the most important ways to keep inflammation at bay as it's our body's second brain.


    C O L L A G E N
    Collagen is the most abundant protein that is naturally produced by the body to sustain the elasticity, integrity, and strength of our skin and other connective tissues, which include fat. Likewise, lack of healthy fat consumption also reduces the nutrient absorption of food-based collagen. These fibers that have the tensile strength like that of steel cables have been researched to increase skin elasticity and moisture in women aged 35-55 with no side effects. Read more about my collagen guide here and here is the brand that I depend on!

    T U R M E R I C
    Turmeric, it's the talk o' the town with its window of seasonal fresh form to turmeric lattés. It has its due reason but it must be extracted and combined properly to be utilised most efficiently by our body. When combined with the chemical piperine in black pepper, the curcumin in turmeric potency is magnified by 2,000 times! That's why I swear by this turmeric supplement daily, which combines black pepper and other anti-inflammatory ingredients such as boswellia gum resin. I am not sponsored or paid by Mega Food for this. I have had knee tendonitis in both of my knees due to overexercising for the past two years and using this turmeric supplement  has diminished all of my pain within about a month of using it. This has allowed me to get back to running and training for a 10K—my New Year's Resolution. I cannot recommend this product enough.

    B L A C K  C U M I N   S E E D   O I L 
    This is a product that has made a world of a difference in the health of my joints, especially with the impact of running daily on concrete.  This is another supplement I will now never be without. People back in the days of the Black Plague used as an antidote for the plague and the ancient Greeks hailed it as the cure-all. I take a teaspoon of this black cumin see oil on an empty stomach in the morning, following my probiotic. 

    Wednesday, May 17, 2017

    BEAUTY BITES: GRAIN-FREE BREADS


    B E A U T Y   B I T E S  |  G R A I N - F R E E   B R E A D S
    A guide to grain-free breads to break over your dreams of gluten, including a healing one based on Ayurvedic Medicine . . .

    PLUS a dairy-free creamy brazil nut cheese spread recipe

    click here to catch my crackers & chips edition!

    Monday, May 15, 2017

    CURRENTLY CREASING №13

    C U R R E N T L Y   C R E A S I N G
    A collection of weekly reads to guide you through your days . . .

    1 | These illustrated daily affirmations by Amy Rose Spiegel to both motivate & soften you into the week . . . 
    2 | A healing gold body oil just in time for summer by sweet Shiva Rose & the founder of my most coveted swimwear line Marysia—just look at this scalloped number! They had previously collaborated on a natural sunblock based on the work of Environmental Working Group (EWG), where I had the privilege to work.
    3 | I wasn't at the dazzling Echo Park Craft Fair in CA, but here are some creators whose work I am coveting, thanks to Ally Walsh—co-founder behind the mindfully delicious Canyon Coffee—& Jamie Arrigo:  
    Mt. Washington Pottery  |  Pax Ceramics  |   Yo También!   |   Les Aprizes   |   Ilana Kohn   |   NU Swim
    4 | Three outfit picks for what the @#$% the late Spring weather is doing: a flyweight cavalry quilted jacket, perforated sneakers, & a flower-collared sweater plus a very covetable tote
    5 | My husband and I are leaving West TX after a year to go back to the Washington, D.C metro area. These moving tips by a woman who frequently moves are going to keep me sane . . .
    6 | How to create a soothing box

    7 |  A story for each object, like Turkish rose oil & Ile de Ré gros sel

    8 |How to be financially savvy

    the
     T H O U G H T  O F  T H E  W E E K

    "You can't carve up the world,
    it's not a pie"

    —PATTI SMITH

    Friday, May 12, 2017

    THE GUIDE: ON HEALTH CARE


    T H E   G U I D E |  O N  H E A L T H   C A R E
    A guide on how to release the blues & retain our sanity through self care in a period of uncertain health care rights . . .

    Wednesday, May 10, 2017

    BEAUTY BITES: 3 SALAD HACKS

    B E A U T Y   B I T E S  |  5   S A L A D  H A C K S
    A guide to upgrading your salad from a sad bed of greens to an actual meal . . .


     F A V O U R I T E   S O U R C E S
    As a Celiac, I ensure that all the selections below are ones I have carefully picked as they are gluten-free.

    Fermented Foods | fermented botija olives and ideally homemade sauerkraut or Number 1 Sons, Pickled Planet, & Gold Mine

    SeaVegetables | Maine Coast Sea Vegetables Triple Blend Flakes & Kelp, Eden Nori Sheets & Seaweed Gomasio; Seaweed Iceland royal kombu & dulse; SeaSnax Roasted Onion Seaweed Snacks; Sun Potion Chlorella Powder
    TerraSoul Spirulina Powder

    Herbs & Spices | fresh market herbs; Badia dried garlic & parsley; Badia Cumin Powder; Badia dried Chopped Onion; TerraSoul Turmeric Powder; Anthony's Ground Ginger

    Tuesday, May 9, 2017

    THE GUIDE: THE ONE KEY TO PRODUCTIVITY

    T H E   G U I D E |  O N E   K E Y   T O   P R O D U C T I V I T Y
    On the one key to increasing productivity & decreasing anxiety I have found while writing a book in six months . . .


    Despite the fact that my guides usually consist of a mélange of recommendations—such as this on feeling feelings—it's not the case with productivity. I have always thought of myself as the über Type-A, they-used-to-call-me-anal-girl person. My pencils all in a row down to the dust of their shavings. 

    Yet, writing my book blew this all off the table—positively. At the beginning stages of my book, I was still working full-time at the Environmental Working Group. I would often be one of the first people to arrive at and the last to leave the office. My commute was an hour-and-a-half one way, with an early rise and an arrival home that turned me into a sofa blob on the clock. Needless to say, I did not have countless hours to spend on my book let alone the site itself or, more importantly, myself as the creator of both. I was also planning a wedding, a move, and sorting through immigration applications at the time. 

    That is merely an aperçu of the tasks I had on my agenda. These were not simply tasks but emotionally-charged, large aspects of my life. Some people have the luxury of a wedding planner—I did not. A move for a nostalgic maximalist from Washington, D.C. to minimalist haven Marfa, TX was a riot. I don't even need to mention the difficulty of being an immigrant that even precludes the cheeto-Trump era. I began to feel drained. 

    “These were not simply tasks but emotionally-charged, large aspects of my life" 

    When we have to trudge ahead full-steam, some of the self-care or holistic productivity suggestions seem too luxurious or frankly out-of-reach. Squeezing in a 20 minute meditation was more like napping on the train during my commute to me. Emotional drainage could not have been recharged through the energy that spoonfuls of this or that herb, superfood, or a bite of whole foods were giving me. I needed to feed myself—my own drive for myself. 

    This is when a dear friend mentioned to me a secret 25th hour. We're all given the same universal currency of time, but this is an hour in which most people are either sleeping or slacking while successful people get @#$% done. It's the hour of the side-hustler. Elizabeth Gilbert used it as a waitress/bourgeoning writer. So did John Grisham to write his first book. A lawyer without any previous writing credentials, Grisham dedicated himself to write a page-per-day at 5 in the morning before work. This was his 25th hour. Mathematically speaking, rising an hour early each day to devote to whatever—working on a side project, going on a run, or even having a slow breakfast—provides extra seven hours each week and 24 hours per month!

    So, I began to wake up an hour early each day. I did so consistently; the 25th hour is not a dance of this or that day. It works because it rattles and is out of the timeline of your habitual schedule. While I was in D.C. and just at the beginning stages of my book, rising early meant time to dedicate for that. After my move, it became sunrise runs for marathon training to clear headspace for the ensuing work day. The key is always to have the one thing that you focus on during your extra hour. Don't create a mini task list to complete that is meant for your work day. Take this secret hour as a "me" time to work on something that fulfills you to reveal equally hidden aspects and capabilities that you inherently possess. 

    Please do tell: how would you use your 25th hour? 

    Thursday, May 4, 2017

    CURRENTLY CREASING №12


    C U R R E N T L Y   C R E A S I N G
    A collection of weekly reads to guide you through your days . . .

    1 | A sweet NYC neighbourhood find, which is serving a bountiful prix-fixe Mother's Day brunch with fresh bounty  à gogo — think cured aurora salmon, local squid salad, & warm beet salad . . .
    2 | A new podcast by one of the yoga teachers I admire the most with her partner on topics ranging from fitness to wellness and lifestyle
    3 |The audio wave frequencies that induce a calmer brainwave state that has zapped my anxiety this week
    4 | Three outfit picks that'll flirt with the pre-Summer breeze: a ruffled daisy number, tan braided loafers, & a bellflower top!
    5 | Geometric prints from the incredibly talented Samantha Totty
    6 | Belletrist: a digital book club founded by Emma Roberts & Karah Preiss that's like "what Kylie Jenner has done to lip kits . . . for books." They have included powerhouses like Joan Didion and the current selection is Marlena by Julie Buntin, which I'm thrilled to dive into having submitted my own book manuscript!

    7 | On jealousy, enemies, and good karma by one of my favourite creators, Amanda of Heartbeet Kitchen

    8 | How to spend a day in bed & not feel like a sloth
    9 | I've been rotating the whimsical illustrations of Barbara Dziadosz as my phone wallpaper & especially love her botanical prints like this one

    11 | Thrilled for the arrival of this book on anti-aging & resetting genes by the hormone health expert Sara Gottfried

    12 | Three skin issues you should get checked by a dermatologist

    the
     T H O U G H T  O F  T H E  W E E K

    "I learned a long time ago that there is something
    worse than missing the goal,
    and that's not pulling the trigger"

    —MIA HAMM