Saturday, January 31, 2009

Recipes and update on my life (off to Houston again)

Drew says; DRINK YOUR VEGGIE (with beets) JUICE.
Hey everyone,

I have some recipes to share with all of you, but first you have to read about me first.

What’s new….hmmmm..

I found some aluminum water bottles that are a good price at Old Navy. They are cute and they have the tops I like. Anyway, the Sigg water bottles are expensive, but Old Navy has some that are like the Siggs that are about $7 or $8. Go check them out. Yoga pants are on sale there too right now. And, I just saw a couple cute aluminum bottles at Pottery Barn for $10. I’m glad I found ones everyone can get without spending too much.

Kevin and I booked our flights out to Arizona (March) and we will be going to the Grand Canyon from there. Time to start checking off some stuff from my bucket list. We'll see the Canyon, hike the Canyon, I’m not sure if we can camp or make it all the way down to the bottom of the canyon so we can white water raft or kayak the canyon. Either way, we plan to do some cool stuff there. I'm hitting up Sedona too because they are all crazy hippy spiritual healers there. Right up my alley.

I have been attending my Toastmasters meetings (2 so far) and the second meeting I was voted best table topic speech (2 minute impromptu speech) Go Shannon! I was a little surprised to get the votes, but so far so good. Not checking off being a good public speaker off my bucket list yet. I still need some training.

I fly to Houston on Super Bowl Sunday. Yes, the sports fanatic will be on a plane in the air while the Superbowl is starting. Think of me. Hopefully I will be able to get to Paul’s in time to watch it DVRed on his TV. Oh, and I’ll get all the scans, blood work and have a doctor’s appointment so I’ll let you all know what comes of that. We’re looking for lower blood counts and stable or shrinking scans. I’ll keep you posted. My magic 8 ball says "Chances of success are high"

I've been watching my nephew, Miles, every Wednesday. We have a lot of fun. He’s 4 months. He laughs, smiles, talks baby gibberish, and he loves to be held by me.

We went to our niece Lauren's, 3 year old birthday party. We got her a dress up wedding dress, because her favorite thing to do by far is dress up and make believe. If there was a prize for best present brought to the party, I think I would win (or come in tied for second or something because she did get some really cool stuff.)

She's sad about something else (not the dress).
Kevin got this icicle off our roof. We have some very dangerous ones dangling off the sides of our house. I keep knocking them down. For one reason; it's hella fun. The other reason; I think it's bad chi to have them hanging over you when you enter the house. SCARY
Last bit of news: Kevin and I went bowling tonight. We needed something to do on these freezing winter days. Anyway, Kevin started with two strikes in a row and ended the game with three strikes in a row, which is a Turkey I just learned. His score was 150. Go Kevin. I broke 100 on a game and that was enough to make me proud. Kevin is thinking about joining the bowling league and soon we will be watching him after SportsCenter ends before Football on Sundays. JK
Want some new recipes I've tried so far as part of my New Years Resolution????? I was going to include pictures, but I forgot to with the avocado rolls and Kevin said my soup looked like throw up. He said he liked how it tasted, but I was discouraged from taking a picture.

Avocado Rolls:
Here are the ingredients:
Spring roll wraps (the tapioca rice ones)
cabbage or some lettuce leaf wrap
shredded carrot (I used my spiralizer)
cucumber (I slice it into long thin strips)
Avocado (about 1/2 of one per roll)
Peanut sauce to dip the rolls in them

Then, you dip the spring roll wrap in luke warm water (they are hard before) for 2 seconds. Then you put them on the plate.
Put the lettuce wrap over the spring roll wrap
put the carrot and cucumber in there.
Then put avocado slices over that (The way I saw them when I decided to try them myself the avocado was on the outside of the lettuce inside the spring roll and the slices were all aligned perfectly and it made them look really nice. I'm no sushi roller, so I just put everything on the inside and it still tastes the same)
Then, you roll it like a sushi roll. Or like a burrito. Or like a doobie. You get the point.

Dip it in the peanut sauce and enjoy!!!

Clean your fridge out veggie soup (This will be enough for leftovers)
Make this soup when you need to use up those veggies that could go bad soon. Keep a couple things of veggie broth on hand all the time and you can make this soup anytime. I don’t really measure so you’ll have to bear with me.
Cut up about 4 carrots
Cut 1 large stalk of celery
Cut one large yellow onion
2 garlic cloves
In a pan simmer these with olive oil and some water for 10 minutes or so
In a large pot add two things of veggie broth and start that on low
Add the veggies cooked so far
Add some garlic salt
Add some pepper
Add some thyme
Cut up some potatoes
Cut up some mushrooms
Simmer theses with olive oil and water for 10 minutes and add them to the pot of veggies
Cut up a bunch of green cabbage and add that to the pot
I then added some quinoa noodles from some pasta I made the night before
Then I just let the pot cook on low for 20-30 minutes
Tasted great

Insulin Reducing - Gluten Free - yummy sweet cereal (do this with whole grain oatmeal too)
So the cereal is Bon’s Red Mill Mighty Tasty Hot Cereal. It’s wheat free, gluten free and dairy free. The ingredients are whole grain brown rice, corn, white sorghum and buckwheat.
I boil water and then simmer the cereal for 10 minutes.
Add some cinnamon
Add a little vanilla flavor
Add some Stevia
The cereal is sweet and tasty. I love it. It’s nice to have something this sweet that would actually over your insulin levels. Why does it do this? Both cinnamon and Stevia reduce insulin levels so they act opposite of what sugar would do. Yeah!

Grandmas Hummus
Mix one can of chickpeas in blender
Add 6 medium garlic cloves
2 tbsp of tahini
juice 1 lemon and add juice
Veggie Oil
blend in second can of chickpeas and blend very well
Tada. Your own homemade hummus
Well, I have to go pack for Houston. Yeah!!!
Your traveling to Texas friend

Monday, January 19, 2009

Health Lesson #9 Where you should eat

Hello Everybody!!! I Have A New FAVORITE Restaurant!!!

Mind Body & Spirits (yep, that's the name)

I was just going to make the blog about how great this place is, but I think I am also calling it a health lesson because if you are serious about your health and the environment, you will seek out places like this to eat at. So, this is Health Lesson #9 on Where You Should Eat. 

How lucky am I? This restaurant just opened up about 2 miles from my house in Downtown Rochester on main street (Rochester Rd) and 2nd Street. Why am I so stoked?? This place is 100% organic. That’s right 100%. I can’t even shop 100% organic at Whole Foods because the don't always carry everything organic. But that’s not all. It is also almost completely local food. The water is reverse osmosis filtered. The soda is homemade with Agave Nectar. There are gluten free pastas on the menu that are to die for.

You think I am done? Well guess again. It is also a green restaurant. Right now it had Green lights as part of the Downtown Rochester light display, but I’m talking environmentally green. The floors are sustainable bamboo, cork, and recycled tires. The tables are made of compressed sunflower seeds or compressed saw dust. Of course they used paint with no VOCs. The cement floors are made with crushed up bottles that were left over from the Owner’s other bars. It looks really pretty too. There is a greenhouse in the back where some veggies and fresh herbs are grown. They compost all the leftover food, so nothing goes to waste and then they get this awesome completely natural fertilizer from that. They recycle everything. They catch rain water to water the plants in the green house. The list goes on and on.

This is the cozy lounge upstairs. Kevin and I ate up here sitting at a couch and we looked at books from the collection they have on their bookshelves. It was so nice and relaxing.
So far I have tried the veggie burger and I was just taken away. I am so used to a “veggie” burger being smashed black beans and this was a delightful surprise. The burger was veggies, but I am telling you it was the best burger I have ever had. Non-veggie people would love it. Kevin loved it. My uncle had the fish sandwich and he loved it as well. My mom and cousin had a pasta dish with chicken and I was doing a juice fast that day so I had to sit there and torture myself and smell it. It looked so good and smelled so good, I was close to breaking the fast. I had the red pepper hummus as the dip of the day and I wish it were the dip of the day every day. The potato pancakes are so incredibly good. I also heard that the half chicken was wonderful. Everything I seem to try there is incredible. They put a lot of effort and care into making these foods. 

The owner of this place is Mike Plez and he is a class act. He also owns the Rochester Beer Mill and he sold the Royal Oak Brewery to open Mind Body Spirits. He is an incredible individual and did not miss a beat when designing this place. Honestly, you will not find one area that he didn’t put thought into. He has always wanted to make a restaurant like this and this was a life long passion. When my Uncle David and my sister Stacie went there to eat, he gave my uncle and me about an hour long tour of the place telling us every little detail he used in making this restaurant. It was incredible. The ambiance is extraordinary too. They have free WiFi upstairs in a lounge with couches and coffee tables. You can eat dinner up there too. They have book shelves with products for sale and they have a ton of books that you can pick up and read or even borrow and bring back later. It is decorated beautifully with bamboo plants throughout the place and flat panel TVs displaying some of the prettiest pictures of Michigan. 

They also use geo thermal heating and cooling (using the earth’s core temperature), solar panels, solar hot water, energy recovery ventilators (using the old air temperature to either heat or cool the new air coming in). You get the point, this place is incredible. 

Go to the site and click on "In The News" and click on the "Fox 2 News Clip". They had the news there when I went there to eat with my uncle and my sister. Of course they only wanted to interview my uncle, but if you pay attention to the background, you will see me talking to my sister and laughing at my nephew who decided to spill water and hit some other things over when the camera started rolling. 

MICHIGAN PEOPLE, you have to go there and check it out. You could go downtown Rochester, go see the lights and then get dinner there afterwards. The fire and ice festival is this weekend. Ice sculptures and fireworks. Feel good about the food you eat and go there and have dinner. This is the start of some major change and I am so happy. I cannot wait to see how much things have changed in another 5 years. People are waking up. People understand that it DOES matter what we do and what we put into our bodies. Although the FDA and even some doctors do not look out for our overall health, we can be sure that we are all smart individuals who care about our earth and care about our bodies. Sooner or later “big money” like Coke and Pepsi did with Stevia, will have to come around and make healthy food for everyone because that is what we as consumers will show them that we want. Remember we vote with every purchase we make.

The big day is today. Obama is our president. He is an inspiration to me and he shows me that a person can achieve what others call "imossible".

Happy Birthday to my sister Stacie. Her birthday is the 20th so this year she gets a very special event on her birthday as well.

Okay, just wanted to ell everyone about this incredible place to eat.

Peace, Love, CHANGE and organic food
Shannon : )

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Donate to Gilda’s Club Metro Detroit

We had a girls night out with some Rack Pack members and Young Adults members to go see Uncle David do his stand up show at the Comedy Castle in Royal Oak. We al had a great time.
Here is a picture of the Gilda's Club house on Rochester Rd between 14 and 13 mile.

Hi all,

BURRRRR!! It's COLD out there!!!

I just wanted everyone to be aware of the need Gilda’s Club currently has for donation money. Gilda’s Club is funded SOLELY through donations from individuals and corporate sponsors. Now that we are in the middle of one of the biggest financial downturns our country has seen, these individuals and corporations are all strapped for cash. I’m sure some of the first cut backs made were the donation funds. Gilda’s is hurting because the donated funds are now no longer covering the operating cost of the club. They have already cut back on staff and our meeting times. The monthly newsletter I used to look forward to getting will no longer be sent out. The clubhouse is closing on Fridays and some Saturdays. I hope that is the end of the program cuts.

As members we are all a little sad and concerned. We love Gilda’s Club and would like it to stay the way it is. This place is the biggest area of support we have being cancer survivors. I honestly don’t know how I would be coping without a place like Gilda’s.

They have a full kitchen, tons of rooms with fireplaces and cozy couches, all sorts of topic discussions and classes with some experts, spa days, support and networking groups with licenced social worker facilitators. The house is a truly comfortable place to walk into for the first time. 

A lot of companies have a program where you can have a charitable donation automatically deducted from your paycheck. The cool thing about these programs is that the money is pre-taxed and usually the company matches what you donate. Way more bang for your buck. I used to donate my money to The Boys and Girl’s Club until I was diagnosed and then all my donations went to the Breast Cancer Resource Center. A lot of people would donate to Komen on my behalf. I appreciate all these wonderful gestures, however, places like Gilda’s Club and The Breast Cancer Resource Center in Austin have made much more positive impact on my life. Plus, Komen gets SO much money and is so well recognized nationwide. They also get a ton of money from pharmaceutical companies. (trust me, I could break out the numbers and you would be amazed) Cancer drug research is more than covered. What is most important to someone diagnosed is support and mental health. A lot of time when treatment ends everyone expects you to go back to normal and that is when the realization sets in that cancer will always be a part of your life. That's when places like Gilda's Club can come to the rescue.

The other important thing is meeting other survivors. I cannot stress how much I have learned about treatment options, doctors etc etc… from all the other members. This information is very important to have and unless you have a cancer network like Gilda’s it’s hard work to find all this information. You become a smarter and more empowered patient joining a network like Gilda's Club.

So, if you would like to support an organization that supports all people affected by cancer, Gilda’s Club is the place to be. If it were not for Gilda’s Club, I would be all alone as a survivor here in Michigan. I would be depressed and have no one who understands how your life completely changes when you are diagnosed with cancer. I have made so many friends, learned so much, been helped though many issues and I have been able to help so many others as well (that is therapy in itself). My life would be a lot different if I didn’t have a place like Gilda’s. I'm there all the time because it helps me so much.

Here are some things you can do to help….
1. Charitable donation from your paycheck at work
2. Go to any of the Gilda’s Club events and spend some money
3. Be an individual donator and send money to Gildas (one time thing)
4. Become a corporate sponsor of Gilda’s or for an event that Gilda’s has
5. ***Go to the ART BRA SHOW I am having for Gilda’s at the Fillmore Detroit*** (Or be a corporate sponsor) I will tell you all much much more about the event soon
6. Tell cancer survivors and family members about Gilda’s Club and have them go
Go to to donate online
You can mail to Gilda's Club, 3517 Rochester Road, Royal Oak, 48073 Attention: Kristen Bernat

I know a lot of people made a new years resolution to spend less money. Charity towards something that means a lot to you shouldn’t be something you cut back on. Spend less on clothes (ouch that hurt to say) Spend less on gas. Bring your lunch to work. Turn your thermostat down a degree. Don’t cut back on charity. These are the times charitable organizations need help the most.

Here are some good New Years ideas from my friends and I:
Kevin and I did a 2008 year wrap up video. We talked to the camera and told stories about our year in 2008. It’s like a video scrapbook. We also do yearly regular scrapbooks.
My friend did a 2009 vision board and went through magazines and made a collage of all the things she wants to do in 2009.
My other friend started a gratitude journal (Oprah style). So far she’s been really good at writing in it every day.
So far I like my idea of a new recipe every week. I made avocado rolls yesterday and they were so good. Maybe monthly I’ll write my recipes and take some pics.

 I’ll see you soon.

darker pink dots