Vatta Balancing for the Festive Season

“It is better to travel well than to arrive”.

 -Buddha

W-o-w-e-e-e ! :)

This is my official way of saying, ‘wholly molly, we are almost at the end of this calendar year- 2014’!

The spring air is warm and strong northerly winds are blowing out all the cobwebs from Winter. There is movement.

Jacarandas blossoming, animals coming out of hibernation to bask in the sun, frangipani shoots sprouting! Spring is certainly in full swing here in Australia.

Similarly,  the air is crisp and fresh, evenings are cool and the flowers are tucking themselves into bed for the winter in the northern hemisphere. (I have family in Canada who give me this inside info!) :-)

There is seasonal change happening everywhere! :) And it’s a glorious thing! Without these changes and cycles, we would not experience the richness and beauty that Mother Nature has to offer in all of her forms and expressions.

Vatta, the element of Air + Ether is present during seasonal change as well as times of the year where there is more activity happening – such as the holiday season.

In my personal experience and observation, seasonal change combined with the busyness leading up to Christmas/New Years can have us feeling:

‘Crazy, frantic, hurried, rushed, and scattered!’

We move fast to get things done, resulting in being short tempered and feisty when things get out of control.

Self-care, proper nourishment, meditation practice, time for rest and proper sleep are all things that can very easily slip by the wayside when there is so much to do and so much happening.

It’s tough to keep the balance!

Ironically, these are the very things we need to be doing – more than ever!

This time of year it is important to ~ ‘slow down’…

These might seem like ghastly words to hear – when your social calendar is filled every weekend until Christmas and your diary is bursting with ‘to do’ lists that scream at you every day.

Trust me on this one though…

Taking a moment to apply some ‘slow down’ to your day, will have you feeling more like this:

Energised, calm, centered, empowered and on-top of it all! You’ll stand out at the Christmas parties, as people will notice that you did something different this year. You don’t look frazzled. You are poised and calm, centered and glowing. You are radiantly grinning and proud of yourself for being peacefully productive this ‘silly’ season. :)

In Ayurvedic medicine, health is all about balance. Any type of change we experience – such as the change of season or a busy period in life can aggravate the ‘Air’ element of the body, known as Vatta Dosha. Vata loves regularity, stillness and warmth. When the weather is windy, irregular, too hot or too cold and dry – Vatta can get upset and start to run a muck! The busyness of this time of year can throw this element out of whack. The good news is that it’s easily balanced and corrected;

~5 Simple Vatta Balancing Lifestyle Tips~

1. Drink Warm Water & Nourish Yourself:

Wake up and drink 2-4 cups of freshly boiled warm water with a slice of fresh ginger. This will warm your digestion and activate your parasympathetic nervous system, allowing you to start your day in a relaxed way. It’s the best!

Make sure you take some time to nourish your body. Start the day with a yummy grounding porridge, buckwheat pancakes or veggie soup! Look after your precious body on the inside and out.

2. Stretch/Move Your Body Daily:

In your room or lounge-room, move your body. Raise your arms up above your head and reach to the heavens.  Stretch your body, breathing with your movement, becoming one with your body :).  Move, unwind, and tune in. Do this for a minimum of 10 minutes. Stretching opens the body and allows us to be in tune and feel good in our skin. Movement releases endorphins (happy chemicals) in the brain, making you feel good. After moving the body it is much easier to sit in stillness and focus within to de-stress through meditation.

3. Meditate/Sit and Be with Your-self:

Find a comfy cushion, bolster, blanket or towel to sit on. Sit on the edge so that your knees are lower than your hips. If you are new to the concept of meditation, don’t worry. Everyone starts somewhere and now is the perfect time to begin. Sit with your spine straight to allow for proper flow of energy, then close down your eyes and simply focus on your breath. Allow thoughts to come and go. They are not important here. All that is important is your breath, and your focus inward. If you can do this for at least 10 min at the start of your day, it will set the scene for a peacefully productive day ahead. Meditation is transformational.

4. Massage Your Feet/Body 3 times per week:

Cold pressed Black sesame oil is traditionally the Ayurvedic oil of choice. If you don’t have it though, you can use organic cold pressed olive oil, almond oil or coconut oil. To prepare the oil for your self-massage, simply warm your oil by placing the bottle in a bowl of hot water for a few minutes. Before you have your shower, massage the oil into your body. Oil is beautifully grounding and balancing. Your skin will eat it up and your nerves will too. Do this for 5 minutes then rinse off in a warm shower.

5. Take Some Deep Breathes:

Before you go out for the day and get into your work or your tasks… take 6 deep breathes. Write a note to yourself in your diary to remind you to move slowly. Remember that you don’t need to be superman or superwoman. You simply need to do your best and do everything with love. If there are things on your to do list that are not high priorities, then cross them off. Free up your time so you can focus on a realistic list of things to achieve. This is a hard one for the high achievers. You can do it though. :) There are 12 months next year to complete those tasks. Remember, there is no rush, everything in life happens in divine timing.

This season is all about looking after YOU – so that you can show up being present, clear and loving with your friends and family.

After all this is what is most important. Not how much we did, but how present we were.

“You give but little when you give of your possessions.

It is when you give of yourself that you truly give.”

– Kahil Gibran

 Be generous this holiday season, fill your own cup so that you can share abundantly with those around you!

…Remember, nothing great is every built overnight. It is regula and consistent acts of love, that contribute to creating long-term health, wellness and joy inside! 

 Shine on!

x Love, Lorien

Ayurvedic Adzuki Quinoa Protein Bowl Recipe

This dish is a simple and delicious vegetarian double protein meal that is light, nourishing and grounding for the digestion. Perfect for Spring, when fasting on soups might be getting a bit boring. Do not fear. Adzuki Protein bowl is here to the rescue!

The secret to making this dish easy to put together is to have the Adzuki and Quinoa pre-cooked.

Adzuki beans take longer than most other pulses that I use in my cooking. They are so lovely as a change of ‘food’ scenery and are well worth the extra effort.

To save time:

  • Boil your Adzuki beans in hot water on a medium heat the night before. Allow approx 1-2 hours of cooking time. Every batch of Adzuki will be different. Some take more or less time to cook. Once you have them cooked. Time to cook your Quinoa. 
  • Rince your Quinoa then place in your pot. For every cup of Quinoa, add approx 2 cups of boiling water. Once you add the water, do not touch. No need to stir. Let the Quinoa steam the same way you would cook rice. Check from time to time and add more water if you see it is necessary. Now that your beans and Quinoa is cooked. The rest is a piece of cake! 

Serves approx 2 – 2.5 people :) :

Organic Ingredients:

  • 2 cups of cooked Adzuki beans
  • 1 cup of cooked Quinoa; white, red, black or mixed
  • Fresh Ginger
  • Spices: Tumeric, Coriander, Cummin
  • Ghee or Coconut oil
  • Fresh Coriander
  • Unhulled Tahini
  • Avocado
  • Celtic sea salt + Black pepper
  • Boiling water
  • Love! (Magic ingredient)

Creation process: 

  1. In your pot add 1-2 tbsp’s of Ghee or Coconut oil.
  2. Add 1/2 tsp of Coriander seeds, 1/2 tsp Cummin seeds and 1 tsp of fresh ginger. Toast these spices together, allowing them to sizzle and expand, then add 1/2 tsp of Tumeric powder and stir. (Onion and Garlic can be added here also/optional).
  3. Now add your pre-cooked Adzuki beans and stir.
  4. Add your Quinoa and mix the beans and Quinoa together, allowing the spices to absorb and soak in. Will be smelling really good by now!
  5. Add a pinch of salt and a few cracks of black pepper.
  6. Your dish is ready to be served. I know… could a dish that is so good, really be so easy!? …In this case, yes. :)
  7. Serve in your bowl of choice. Add a drizzle of tahini with a spoon, then a hearty pinch of freshly chopped Coriander. Slice your Avo in half, then into quarters and scoop the fruit out or leave it in its shell for a more ‘rustic’ presentation.
  8. Now, enjoy! Congratulations on preparing a hearty, nourishing, soulful dish that your body and mind will love!

Yum. Yay. You did it!

Happy nourishing & soulful eating friends! 

x Lorien

Our 2nd Birthday – Thank You! :)

Two years of wholesome loving goodness creations and we are celebrating from across the seas in Canada! Yippee!

Two years ago on this date WLG was born, out of a love and inspiration for sharing the beauty and magic of real – wholefood – organics – Ayurvedic medicine and wholesome nourishment with kitchens and families around the world!

…The amount of beauty, inspiration, joy, amazing new friends, connections, inspiration, wholesomeness, love, goodness, fun and creativity that has come about over the last 2 years has been INCREDIBLE and so nourishing on every level! Whoa!!

Filled with gratitude today and everyday for this community and for all the friends near and far who have supported this creation and it’s organic growth since the beginning!

Thankyou, thankyou, namaste and thankyou!

It is each and everyone of you being part of this community and being amazing in your own lives that makes these dreams possible and a reality.

Gratitude and love from the shores of Cananda (…where the health food shops, organic produce and green trees are amazing!)

x Om Shanti!  x

Lots of wholesome loving goodness love!

x Lorien

Sunrise & Canada!

Seeing the sunrise is something special. That is even an understatement.

It is D I V I N E!

Every day the sun appears. If your in the southern hemisphere it rises over the ocean.

If you are in the northern hemisphere then it sets over the Ocean.

Both spectacular sights to witness and allow to flood the cells of your body!

For the next six weeks these eyes will be viewing the sun from North America as we set off on an adventure to the land of wild chip-munks, squirrels, skunks and blossoming summertime flowers! Relaxing time with family, nature time during the Canadian summer and Wholesome Loving Goodness’s first ever North American tour – holding 4 Ayurvedic Wholefood Cooking Classes in the first week of August 2014 in Toronto and London, Ontario. For more info on these classes get in touch via my ‘contact’ page! :) The more whole food lovers, the merrier!

Exciting! :)

Here are some words of wisdom and beauty to bathe your soul in…

“Your vision will become clear only when you look into your own heart. Who looks outside dreams, who looks inside awakens.”

~ Carl Jung 

With love! :)

x Lorien

Warm, nourish, soften, mmm – Let’s talk ‘Ayurvedic Daily Routine’

Let’s cut straight to the chase, to the juicy business of our day to day living.

Your body is a temple. It is sacred.

For your body, mind and spirit to function optimally, it must be cared for, loved, nourished nurtured and respected with consistency and regularity. Your body is relying on you to look after it. It will even talk to you when it is out of balance, to get your attention and make you stop, slow down, rest, have a cry of release and realise where you are really at.

In essence, you are a miracle and your body is the magical vessel that you have to express, shine, dance, sing, play, connect and experience the world and inter-react with.

In honour of your divine body, of all bodies, your incredible organs and wondrous nervous system that communicates and allows all actions, thoughts, movement, digestion, creativity, love and magic to take place within you ~ Ayurveda has some tips for us!

The ‘Daily Routine’ is a key ingredient in creating harmony, balance and wellness internally and externally.

I love these simple practices that slow the mind down, soothe the soul, nourish the body, mind and spirit on the deepest levels and provide an opportunity to connect within on a daily basis.

If you can only start with adding 1 of these 5 practices into you day to begin with, that will make a big difference in itself!

Without further ado… Let’s get to it:

  1. Wake up, spit in the sink any gunk in your mouth, gently brush your teeth, scrape your tongue with a copper tongue scraper (copper conducts the toxins the best, or silver or gold). See here for Tongue Scraping Tutorial 
  2. Drink warm water with fresh ginger, lemon and honey (do not add honey if water is boiling, only when temp is warm). Or simply drink warm water to flush toxins, warm your digestive fire and hydrate your brain to start the day.
  3. Self massage with organic black sesame oil. Warm the oil and apply to your body before you shower in the morning. Focus on the joints, massage in a circular motion and move from your feet to your head. A great practice for improving circulation, boosting the immune system, cleansing the lymphatic system, soothing and grounding the nervous system, nourishing the bones and muscle tissue and loving your body first thing in the morning or before bed at night. Have a warm shower afterwards, the heat will open your pores and allow the oil to penetrate deeper into the tissues offering greater nourishment and goodness to your cells! Yum! So good in autumn and winter particularly! 
  4. Eat something warm for brekky! Warm, smooth, light and soupy… A rule in Ayurveda is to eat your biggest meal in the middle of the day when the sun is the highest- and to eat light and easy to digest foods for breakfast and dinner to assist your body and allow for optimum digestion.
  5. Massage your feet before bed with warm sesame oil to ground the nervous system and promote a very very deep and delicious sleep! …Also putting your legs up the wall, a yoga pose called the fountatin of youth or virparita karani that will nourish your adrenals and kidneys, restoring natural energy and allowing your body to balance and melt into a deep yummy sleep! 
Incase your wondering about the ‘tongue scraping’… Here’s a little ‘tongue scraping’ video tutorial.

Have fun incorporating these beauties into your awareness and self-care, self-love regime! Your body will love you for it!

x Love, Lorien

Thankyou Autumn & …a treat!

Well…. it is now the last day of Autumn.

What a beautiful season it has been!

Clear blue skies, sunny warm days, moody sunrises and expansive bursting sunsets… It has been, m a g i c a l !

Autumn is a season that assists with the transition between one extreme season to another. In Australia, the weather is pretty temperate all year round. Nonetheless, there is a big difference between the humid, balmy days of summer and the crisp, cool, fresh nights of winter.

Thank goodness for Autumn!

Without Autumn, we would be going from one very hot season to a very cold season (depending on where you are in the world), and this would come as a big shock to the body!

Mother nature is so intelligent and thoughtful… instead of giving us this extreme difference to adjust too, she gives us Autumn!

A season of transition.

As we transition through different seasons in the year, the body goes through subtle changes and shifts.

At the change of one season to another it’s a perfect time to give your digestive system a gentle cleanse.

A simple approach could be to simplify your meals for a week. Eat soup at night for 1 week instead of other heavier foods, to give your body a rest. Or if you are really keen, make a big batch of yummy Vegie soup and fast on that for 3-5 days depending on your body type to allow your organs to rest and rejuvenate in preparation for the coming season.

So, in thanking Autumn for her gentle beauty and gradual seasonal change from summer to winter… I have something special for you all!

A recipe that we made today at one of my Simple Nourishment Ayurvedic Wholefood cooking classes! :)

Ayurvedic, nut-free Besan Bindi Balls!

Go to the recipe here!

Happy transitioning. Happy nourishing. Happy self-loving and living!

You are a beautiful being! :)

x Love,

Lorien

A bowl FULL of LOVE. Guest Interview with Ayurvedic Chef Stephen Galpin

There are many ways to be of service in this world…

Some choose to serve in third world countries, contributing to the quality of life and love in communities that have limited resources.

Some serve their country, some feed the poor, some sacrifice their own wellbeing in protest for the environment, mother nature and the wellbeing of others.

There are so many ways to be of service, through our thoughts, words and actions every single day.

Drum-roll please… Make a warm cup of Tumeric Chai, grab your blankey and get cosy as we take some time with a true teacher of the spirit of service.

Chef Stephen Galpin, our Wholesome Loving Goodness featured guest this month, is of service through LOVE-FILLED food and wisdom.

Stephen’s cooking of delightful ~ spice, ghee, LOVE infused offerings have a way of transforming the ‘eater’ the ‘receiver’ of this truly divine cuisine.

This morning as I enjoyed a bowl of his amazing porridge for breakfast at the Mudita Ayurveda and Mindfulness retreat in Byron Bay that I work on each year, I was reminded of the power of porridge, the power of infusing LOVE into your cooking. I was so inspired that as soon as I finished the bowl of creamy, vanilla, saffron polenta I swiftly walked to my car, got my laptop, turned it on and began writing these words in honour and praise of this amazing Chef, teacher and master of devotional cooking.

About six months ago I did an interview with Stephen. I asked him some questions about the life of being an Ayurvedic chef, his inspiration, his perspective on this gorgeous food and offering of love that he shares. He graciously agreed to share this information with me, with you – the Wholesome Loving Goodness tribe!

In nature there is a divine timing for when a fruit is ripe, when a flower opens, when the rain falls and when the sun rises. This divine timing cannot be forced or controlled.

This interview has had it’s own divine timing.

The time has come, it is the spring of introducing you to this great master and teacher of  Ayurvedic cooking, spirituality, philosophy, culinary expertise & love.

I am delighted to introduce you to a teacher of devotion, spirit and service…

Stephen’s porridge is bowl-licking good!

How did you first come to discover Ayurvedic cooking and what was your inspiration to make this a big part of your journey?

I was introduced to Ayurveda through studies of yoga, there was no real inspiration it sort of just evolved. As I changed so did my approach to cooking and health.

What does it mean to prepare ‘Ayurvedic’ food to you and what sets this type of cooking apart from regular cooking practices?

To prepare Ayurvedic food is to approach your preparation and cooking with mindful awareness, giving full consideration to every step of the process and how the ingredients will interact enhance and balance each other,  how the finished dish will then affect those that are eating it. Consideration is given to stimulating the digestive fire or “Agni” through the subtle use of warming spices to prepare food that will not exaggerate any actions.

What is your favourite Ayurvedic spice, if you had to choose one and why?

Cardamon, I love the qualities, aroma and scent. I cant imagine a cup of tea without a pinch or two. :-)

Life is full of so much magic and beauty, what is it for you that bring’s the most joy each day?

Simplicity, I love just being.

If you could share one piece of kitchen advice with families around the world to inspire some wholesome loving cooking, what would it be?

Keep cooking for yourself and others, cooking is an act of loving kindness.

What are the key elements that make a difference in your daily life?

I like to be still and have time to contemplate, mainly I try to get through each day without upsetting anyone including myself. I always think at the end of each day whether I have achieved that and mostly I have so thats pretty cool.

Finally, if you had one wish for humanity and the world at this current time, what would it be?

Mutual love and respect. I think if we can all respect each others uniqueness and extend loving kindness towards each other. We all grow up differently reaching stepping stones in our own time, so if we can allow that growth to happen naturally and not try to control, govern or force to much.

Stephen has a beautiful Ayurvedic Cook Book with 88 Love-filled Recipes called ‘The Ayurvedic Kitchen’ that you can purchase from his website.

Connect with Stephen for inspiration and wisdom on the path of Ayurveda, cooking and love on his website & facebook page.

“Ecstasy is experienced through expansion. The ecstasy of food is waiting for you to dance & play with it, to get excited.
Allow that feeling to flow from within. When your cup is full, it will overflow! Let the pot catch it. This is the gift that nature’s abundance has to share when you take the time to get to know it.”  
~ Chef Stephen Galpin
Namaste

Thankyou Stephen, such an honour to spend some time with you!

x Lorien

 

 

Gratitude notes…

 

Gratitude for…

  • Clean, fresh air
  • My breathe
  • The earth I walk on
  • My body that moves me & allows me to dance!
  • The sunshine
  • The moonshine & stars
  • The beauty of sunrise & sunset
  • The Ocean
  • Beautiful Family & Friends
  • Nourishing Relationships (Self & special one in your life)
  • Work I love
  • Health, Energy and Vitality
  • My Parents & Grandparents
  • Clean water & Organic fresh wholesome food
  • The practice & wisdom of Yoga & Ayurveda
  • My teachers & my teachers, teachers!
  • All of the experiences in life that have led me to be where I am today.
  • Grateful for the gift of gratitude!

The practice of Gratitude daily, morning and evening before bed will inspire and uplift what is possible in life 100 fold!

Grateful for community.

Love,

x Lorien

Growth, this is why we are here…

 In times of beauty, times of greatness and in times of inner reflection, diving deep, searching for truth, purpose direction, exploring the inner realms of your being… It can be confronting, challenging and easy to begin to feel a little ‘lost’ and unsure of where the path is leading you…

No matter what you are going through, it is perfect! More perfect than you can possibly imagine right now!

…The universe works in mysterious ways!

Wherever you are at, celebrate it! :) Love it, embrace it… make peace with it. And then flow with grace and continue on your path.

Today the message of inspiration…

“You are whole, complete & perfect just as you are.”

Yes you, in your skin. You are divine. 

The mind may try to grasp thoughts, find meaning and identity in outward things. This can be fine, and fun and beautiful.

Realising that true satisfaction, peace, inner joy and calm arises out of allowing the minds thoughts to float through – rather then stick to the edges of your beautiful brain, and instead come back to your true beauty, your inner knowledge that you are enough, you are worthy, you are a being of light and you are loved and wanted in this world.

You have a purpose and mission so great that other’s who don’t even know you yet can’t wait to support you in your heart’s truest path and calling. This is your true authentic place to reside. Allowing the inner light that shines within you to be bright and to be your guide.

Have faith, trust, surrender, breathe… 

Life is a blessing and we are all here to grow, develop, dance and discover new virtues in connection with our body, other’s and the planet at large.

Some deep thought’s… Stay real, remember to hug as many humans as possible, drink warm water in the morning and smile. Smiling works miracles! :)

With Love,

x Lorien

 

Wholesome ‘Carob Chocolate’ Recipe!

For those choosing to eat a path of Wholefoods, avoiding excess stimulation to the nervous system, avoiding processed sugars and unhealthy hydrogenated oils, then the prospect of finding some ‘Chocolate’ pleasure to share with your love (or simply your beautiful self!) might seem unnerving.

In Ayurvedic medicine, Chocolate is considered to be heating for the body and easily over-stimulating to the nervous system (brain) which really needs to stay cool, calm & collected! Due to these and some other reasons, Chocolate is not something you will find your Ayurvedic practitioner generally prescribing.

A big part of Ayurveda’s holistic approach is about maintaing balance not become too ‘rigid’ or stuck in one thing or another.

We always have wholesome choices we can make however. When it comes to eating ‘treats’ and things of a ‘Chocolaty’ kind… This is the way I like to do it!

Ingredients:

  • 10 tblsp’s of Coconut oil
  • 3-4 Tbsp’s of Carob powder
  • 1 Tbsp of Tahini/Almond butter or Sunbutter
  • 1/4 tsp of Sea salt
  • Dash of Vanilla essence
  • 1 tsp of Cinnamon powder (In Ayurveda this helps the body digest Sweet foods & improves circulation)
  • Major ingredient, LOVE!

*To set the Chocolate’s you can use an ice-cube tray (one with silicon at the bottom for ease is best!)

 Method:

  1. Melt Coconut oil and pour into a bowl.
  2. Add your Carob to the bowl and mix with your favorite spoon.
  3. Add Tahini, Almond butter or Sunbutter and stir thoroughly. (We want the consistency as smooth as possible!)
  4. Next add the vanilla, cinnamon, salt and stir.
  5. Pour your mix into your chosen chocolate mould or ice cube tray and place the chocolates in the freezer for approx 30mins to allow them to set!

When they are ready to serve, pop out the hearts and enjoy these real – wholefood sweet treats!

An easy peazy, simple, homemade creation that will satisfy your Chocolate taste-buds & leave you feeling balanced and calm after-wards!

*Carob is naturally sweet. This recipe is 100% sugar free and sweetener free as this is how I love to make them 95% of the time! J To make these chocolate treats a little sweeter or for a special occasion, you can add a dash of maple syrup – both delicious and slightly different! J

* Customise your choclates by adding a few Goji berries on top, some currants, desiccated coconut or whatever your tummy, heart and taste-buds desire! Yum! 

With Love!

x Lorien