Friday, May 24, 2013

Samskaras, Book 2 in the Love and Light Series Teaser

Sometimes, you just have to roll with the punches.  While I hit a few speedbumps on my way to publication, Samskaras is so close to being ready.  I hoped to have this book out by next week, but I'm happy to take an extra week or two to polish and prepare.

But I am DYING to share it with you, so here is the first of four teasers I'll be doling out over the next ten days.

Enjoy and share!

Namaste, dear friends.

Monday, May 13, 2013

What the Hell are Samskaras or When's Your Next Book Coming Out, Damn it?

As I've been prattling on about book 2 in the Love and Light series, Samskaras, releasing soon, I have been repeatedly asked:  What the hell is a samskara?  Here, in a nutshell, is my take on the concept:

Samskaras are the grooves of our past played out in our present.  The way we feel, think, act, speak and view our world are all impacted by our earliest experiences.  There are some who say they go back to the womb, and those who profess they go beyond even our birth into previous lives from whence we acquired the stuff we cram into our karmic luggage.  Either way, wherever and whenever we pick up our habits of existence, we have a duty to peer into the dark depths of our oceanic unconsciousness.  What we see there may be disturbing or enlightening or downright scary, but it is who we are at our un-interpreted base, and dredging these waters is our most important work.  Our very lives depend upon it.

Of course, you don’t have to face your fears, dear friend.  You can choose, instead, to bumble around your life wondering why bad shit always happens to you.  When the rollercoaster ride grinds to a halt and you take your last, conscious breath on this plain, you can assure yourself that it was better to ride blindfolded and to have settled.  Sure. You can do that.  Or you can pull on your big kid Underoos and take a chance.  Do something nerve-wracking and uncover the negative patterns that keep tripping you up.  And when you face your bug-a-boos and survive, the most amazing thing will happen:  you will create the life you crave with every cell of your being.  I kid you not, dear friend. 

But be forewarned: it’s going to get hot and your head is going to hurt and your body is going to scream for relief, but you will not regret a single, solitary moment you spent chipping away at what holds you back.  Oh, and not all samskaras are negative, but they tend to be the ones that we cling to like an old, worn-out blanky.  The comfort of the devil we know is oh so sweet compared to the terrifying fucking clown that lurks beneath, no?  Be brave, dear friend, and dig out the negative by the root, so you can sow the seeds of your dreams, and reap the life well-lived.

Thoughts, comments, questions and random facts are all welcome here.  Leave them below and remember to sprinkle your words with a generous helping of love and light.

Namaste, dear friends, namaste.

Sunday, May 05, 2013

My Carefully Organized Eating Regimen a.k.a. Healthy Eating Requires Planning and my Turkey-Beef Mini-Meatloaf Recipe

Sunday is food prep day for me and on the menu this week is grilled chicken breast, turkey-beef mini meatloaf, peaches and cream oat cups, banana protein bread and my traditional black beans and rice. These combined with a fridge/freezer well-stocked with frozen veggies, sweet potatoes, fresh salad veggies, hummus and fruit will get me through the week. And I've planned some fun foods too (one of the secrets to my healthy success): dark chocolate with candied orange peels, mini bottles of Merlot and Pinot Noir, and some raspberry merlot aged cheddar. This is the way to make healthy food fun and convenient and to make sure I eat while I bury myself in edits so I can get book 2 in the Love and Light series released before Memorial Day. (Please, please, gods of novels and editing, get me through this week and on to more fun things, like formatting.) Gack! Did I just write that??

 But I digress...

 My family likes to tease me about my "Carefully Organized Eating Regimen"--their words, not mine--which really is nothing more than planning ahead in order to turn healthy eating into convenience foods. I could buy those frozen so-called healthy meals, but I've had enough salt and whipped meat-products to last me a lifetime, thank you very much. I'm a comfort food gal (and come on, who isn't?), and I want food that is absolutely delicious that I can look forward to. Thus, Sunday is for food prep. And I like to pass on the good stuff, so here's the recipe for my healthy mini-meatloaf:

Turkey-Beef Mini Meatloaf
 Makes 12 servings

 16 oz. Extra Lean Ground beef (96/4)
20 oz. Ground turkey breast (99% fat free)
3/4 cup chopped onion
3 egg whites or 9 tbl. liquid egg whites
1 tbl. Mrs. Dash Salt-free Steak Seasoning
2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
1/2 c. ketchup (optional as its rather high in sugar, but my family notices when I don't add this. You can substitute plain tomato sauce or salsa)
1 cup fresh parsley
1/4 c. oat bran

Nutritional Facts: 1 serving = 1 muffin, 128 Calories, 2.1 g Fat, 245 mg Sodium, 9.4 g Carbs, .5 g Fiber, 21.6 g Protein

 Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Combine all ingredients. It works best if you use your bare, carefully washed hands. ;-) Then, divide the mixture into a 12-cup muffin tin. Bake for 1 hour or until meat is cooked all the way through and tops of meat muffins are browned.

 I rarely add salt during the cooking process, preferring to add to taste at the table.  <----Good tip for reducing your salt intake. Believe it or not, you don't taste the salt as well when its cooked into the food, but you get that salty goodness you're looking for when you add it afterwards with much less.
Enjoy!  And if you try my recipe, please post a comment on how it turned out and if you made any changes to the recipe, what did you do?

What are your menu plans for the week?  Are you prepared for a healthy eating week?  For more healthy eating recipes and healthy living ideas, you can follow my Pinterest boards Perfectly Balanced Quick Meals, Breakfast, Healthy Lifestyle and Side Dishes.  I'm always updating so keep a lookout for new stuff.

Namaste, dear friends