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  • 9 Jun 2020 3:36 PM | Maria Allshouse

    With the arrival of summer, hopefully your garden is bursting with ripe, gorgeous vegetables in their prime! Each vegetable has its own freshness criteria, but you don’t need to remember a list of specifics to take away the freshest vegetables from your home garden.

    If you haven’t had time or room to grow a garden this season, there are tons of markets that offer high quality greens that will make your meals fresh and full of flavor.

    Safely visiting a farmer’s market is another great way to get fresh produce while also supporting local farmers. You will have the opportunity of going straight to the source with any questions, as the term “freshly picked” takes on a whole new meaning!

    Use this guide for selecting the freshest and tastiest produce for your Lean & Green meals this summer:

    • Asparagus. Look for smooth, firm, brightly colored stalks. Choosing stalks of similar thickness will ensure even cooking times.
    • Bok Choy. Baby bok choy should be light green in color. Mature bok choy should have dark green leaves with bright white stalks.
    • Broccoli. Choose firm stalks with tight florets and crisp green leaves. Avoid sprouting florets or florets that have begun to yellow.
    • Celery. Choose firm, green stalks with green leaves.
    • Cucumber. Choose a cucumber that is firm and completely green.
    • Green Beans.Choose beans that snap rather than bend.
    • Iceberg Lettuce. A quality iceberg head is firm with thick, light green leaves. A good test is to actually scratch and smell the stalk; a sweet or bitter smell indicates a sweet or bitter flavor.
    • Kale. Choose crisp, dark green leaves and avoid yellow leaves. Smaller leaves are usually more tender.
    • Romaine Lettuce.Look for a stalk that has a long head and thick medium to dark green leaves.
    • Spinach. Look for tender, dark green leaves with unblemished stems. Spinach should have a fresh scent that’s not too strong.

    If you’re still unsure of what to select, the most important thing to remember is to rely on your senses. If something doesn’t look or smell right, it’s probably not your freshest option.

    Ask me about ways you can get healthy vegetables and produce this season on your journey to Lifelong Transformation, One Healthy Habit at a Time®.

  • 29 May 2020 7:38 PM | Sanna Carapellotti

    Have you ever had someone pressure you into giving them money?

    Maybe someone asked for your opinion, but you sensed they really didn’t want it, and then, you feel angry with yourself because you didn’t speak your truth?

    Yes, and yes!

    We all have felt coerced into doing something we didn’t want to do or saying things we didn’t believe. And we all have crossed someone else’s boundaries too.

    Asserting boundaries is a challenge we face every day, questioning - what is okay and not okay.

    As you may suspect, setting boundaries does not come with instructions.

    A personal boundary, unlike property markers, is an invisible, energetic field, that is fluid, depending on who the individual is and the circumstances, but always, how we define ourselves.

    The boundaries we create are an expression of who we are. You might notice that there are some things you are very clear about and others, you are not.

    Our ability to decisively follow our values, principles, and beliefs, is also impacted by inheritances, early experiences (trauma), emotional health, and the relationship we have to the individual who is pressuring. 

    In other words, what we allow and believe to be okay and not okay is a conditioned response— and can always be consciously re-evaluated, which we don't do often enough.

    We often proceed under the false belief that the manipulator (family, friend, or stranger) has our best interest at heart and would never intentionally set out to take from or harm us.

    Brené Brown, Ph.D., shame researcher, says that the manipulator “is doing the best they can,” according to who they are as individuals.

    While I agree with her assertion, it might be a challenge to keep in mind after someone has taken advantage of you, whether for the first or for the umpteenth time. You might believe they think like you, and you might want them to stop or make the decision for you.

    From my perspective, as-they-are is correct, but, in truth, we don’t know or need to know the intention of the manipulator. Or why they behave in that way. What lurks behind the sobs, promise, or smile is not for you to figure out.

    You wonder, ‘why would someone do such a thing?’  Why do I allow him to do that?

    I used to inform children in my Empowered against Sexual Assault classes that it is not up to them to know the intentions of an individual who may be behaving inappropriately. If they sense something is off, they have the power to take action to secure their safety, which it their first priority.

    When it gets down to it - boundary setting is not about the perpetrator - it is about you.

    You give in to demands for money, integrity, property, emotion, presence, negotiations, sex, work, health, drugs, and advice (and more.) for many reasons. Some are faulty subconscious, well-established programmed patterns that you can change.

    Here are a few:

    • Your sense of self is vaguely defined.
    • Saying no (or yes) is difficult for you.
    • You believe you can heal someone's emotional wounds by fulfilling their request. 
    • You have a pattern of being ‘a victim.’
    • You have a false belief that they will stop after this last time.

    Ask Yourself These Questions:

    • Where do I end, and where and when do I let them into my space?
    • Does my boundary field shrink the more I feel pressured?
    • Are you willing to continue sacrificing yourself for the needs of another?
    • Are you okay with others having control over your decisions?

    Here’s the real problem:
    After an experience, it seems more okay for you to berate and demean yourself, rather than stand up for your principles at the time of the pressuring. You avoid the consequence of standing up to someone and damn yourself later.

    Remember this - it is not about the money you gave or opinion you didn’t share. What is more important is the loss of your connection to self.

    Here are five steps to help yourself!

    • Increase awareness and take responsibility for your actions, emotions, and consequences in these situations. Do a self-inquiry by assessing your qualities, values, integrity, limits, and beliefs. Answering the question - who are you, is strengthening. It is common to never put words to what you believe and to think through how you will behave in certain situations because the response is automatic.
    • Notice what happens in an interaction when you feel pressured.  Tune in to the body and breath. Our internal guidance system can sense if you feel threatened or will message you if you feel uneasy. At this time, you have the opportunity to make a choice.
    • You can mentally practice a situation where you feel pressured frequently to gain more clarity and confidence. Practice what you want to say, keep your posture tall and grounded, and steady your breath. Shifting into a power stance and breathing deeply will help you more than you realize!
    • If you are reluctant to speak up, share ‘a truth,’ not ‘your truth.’ We become conditioned at a young age not to speak up and to 'be nice.’ Re-evaluate this belief.
    • Be clear about your intentions. LEAD with strength, clarity and confidence and have your boundary in place. If you get got off guard, Have a stock answer, such as I will be in touch!
    • Have compassion and love for yourself, if you acquiesce to someone’s pressure. It’s another opportunity for you to discover who you are and your needs.

    If it’s time to re-evaluate your boundaries, go inward and do a self-inquiry. Recognizing that boundaries are fluid and within our charge is crucial to setting your boundaries. Because boundaries are a two-way street, as we give thought to our values, we also appreciate the boundaries of others.

    When you are clear about your values and trust in yourself, you will feel stronger, more secure, and confident that, when you draw the line in the sand and boldly declare your truth, you mean it!

    Sanna Carapellotti, M.S., Cht

  • 26 May 2020 12:55 PM | Maria Allshouse

    You’ve dropped your bad habits, but the urge to do them is still there. This is normal and expected. What can control the urge and even stop it is creating an environment that’s conducive for change. Our environment impacts our habits more than we think and we are often competing against it. Making a conscious effort to control and create your environment can make changing easier. Here are some tips on how to create a conducive environment for change:

    • Create friction. Focus your energy on making it hard to continue bad habits. Move your television out of the bedroom to promote healthy sleep habits. Take another route to work to avoid your favorite coffee shop. Stock the fridge with water to stop yourself from reaching for a soda. When you do this, it makes healthy habits easier to do.
    • Control your environment. Controlling your environment means equipping it with everything you need to succeed in implementing the change that you want. It is more than removing temptations, it’s about replacing habits with new ones. Try setting an alarm on your phone for reminders to for exercise, drink water, and practice mindfulness.
    • Task association. Task association is a way to train your brain to complete a task automatically. Light a scented candle at night while practicing mindfulness. Each time you do, your brain will associate that task with that scent. This can also be practiced in other ways. For example, if you frequently eat at your desk, remove all snacks from near your desk to associate your desk as a place of work, not eating.
    • Healthy support system. All of these tasks are more difficult when you don’t have support. Continue to build your health bubble and promote wellness. When others are aware of the lifestyle that you are leading they will either align themselves with you or be considerate of the efforts that you are trying to make.

    Ask me about other ways to create a conducive environment on your journey to creating optimal health. Have a desire to get control of your health but don’t know where to start? Schedule a Complimentary Health Assessment

  • 9 May 2020 6:26 PM | Maria Allshouse

    Memorial Day marks the unofficial start to summer and with warmer weather comes longer days, plenty of sun, and outdoor barbeques. While hamburgers and hot dogs are signature staples for the grill, there are plenty of vegetables that taste amazing with a smoky char. Here are some vegetables that are great for grilling and perfect for your backyard meals:

    • Portobello mushrooms. Portobellos pack a lot of flavor, are easy to marinate, and are the perfect substitute for a meat patty. They also have a meaty texture and absorb marinades well. Try a balsamic-flavored marinade to bring out the mushrooms’ earthy flavors.
    • Zucchini. Grilling zucchini brings out its natural sweet flavors. You can cut in half or in spears directly on the grill, or you can cut them into chunks and grill them on skewers or in foil packets.
    • Asparagus. Thick asparagus spears work best for grilling; thin spears can fall through the grates and dry out before you get a good char. To get it crispy on the outside and tender on the inside, grill the spears on the grates directly over high heat.
    • Green beans. Grilled green beans are crunchy, tender, and smoky with crisp edges. Simply toss them in an even layer and let them sizzle. Make sure to place some heavy duty aluminum foil over the grates to prevent them from falling.
    • Broccolini. Whole broccoli doesn’t work quite so well on the grill since it’s not flat enough, but broccolini is perfect! Grill the broccolini spears until the color intensifies to bring out its flavors.
    • Eggplant. Enjoy grilled eggplant on it on its own or use it as a substitute for a meat patty. Like mushrooms, eggplant absorbs spices and marinades very well, making them extremely versatile.

    Want more tips, inspiration, and recipes? Send me a message to add you to my mailing list here:

  • 28 Apr 2020 9:54 AM | Maria Allshouse

    These challenging times can bring on uncertainly, anxiety and stress. And, stress can lead to reacting emotionally, making choices that aren’t necessarily healthy or positive. And that can lead to feeling even more stressed. I bet we’ve all experienced that at one time or another. For many, food becomes the “go-to” for comfort or distraction (although relief is very fleeting and the stressor is still there). What can one do?  Plenty! Here are eight tips for overcoming stress eating:

    1. First and foremost, focus on mindfulness.  Be aware of your eating habits. Tune into your emotion before making that unhealthy choice. A little exercise to practice STOP (Breath) CHALLENGE (Am I really hungry? Why am I feeling this way?) CHOOSE (Then make your decision --- is this going to change the current situation) when feeling stressed in order to gain composure. You’ll make a better decision / choice most of the time.
    2. Keep your blood sugars level. By eating small, frequent (every 3 hours) nutritious meals vs 3 large ones, your blood sugar levels will be stabilized and this will keep true hunger pangs from occurring.
    3. Drink plenty of water throughout the day.  This can also help quell the pangs of an empty stomach AND promote a healthy digestive system.
    4. Make sure your meals/snacks incorporate protein as well as good healthy fats (Omega 3’s) vs “all carbs.”  Fats and proteins are more filling and take longer to digest. These good fats can aid in reducing inflammation in the body, too.
    5. Keep junk food out of the house as much as possible. If it’s there, you’re apt to eat it.  Keep the refrigerator and pantry stocked with healthy foods.
    6. When snacking, take out one portion size and then close and put away the package.
    7. Avoid alcohol when stressed.  This can heighten or prolong your anxiety and worsen the stress.  Alcohol can also lead to poor food choices as well as an abundance of empty calories.
    8. Seek support at home.  Having some accountability can help keep you on track of health goals and good eating habits.

    Take good care of yourself, especially during this time. You’ll be more equipped to handle the changes and challenges that come your way.  AND, good health and a strong immune system are essential.

    Stay focused! Stay healthy! Stay connected!

  • 26 Apr 2020 8:42 PM | Sanna Carapellotti

    Imagine that a physician hands you a prescription recommending “1000 healings a day.”

    You might think, “ahh, alriiiight,” but what if she is on to something!

    The Center for Disease Control (CDC) reports that stress accounts for 80% of visits to a primary care physician. If stress hurts our health, is it safe to speculate that love, joy, happiness, and connection may be the antidote to improve our health, immunity, and life, in general?


    Research tells us that our cells are shaped from the outside in, referring to the power of thought and attitudes, including hormonal patterns, early programming, and epi-genetics.

    This research is great news because we are no longer 100% tethered to genetics!

    We can consciously become aware of our internal worlds to deliberately shift our states. We are hardwired to change our minds in an instant because the mind-body system responds at lightening speed.

    Let’s say you are feeling blue and an old friend calls. You instantly lift out of the emotional low and feel happy!

    However, we don't have to wait for an external event to change our internal states.

    YOU can create a just-right, feel-good state anytime you want!

    Because my work centers on healing and transformation, some time ago, I questioned if we had to wait until we are ‘healed’ to have authentic feel-good emotions. No. No. No, we do not.

    Because of the brain’s negative bias, it searches automatically for the negative, the worst-case scenario, and perpetuates the sob story with great ferver. So it can seem like quite the task.

    I am here to say that you can expand your wellbeing today. 

    With conscious awareness and intentional searches for the good, you can tune into the incredible world around you and take it in.

    Life is full of love, surprises, inspirations, beauty, and awe. You miss out on so many small wondrous moments when you stay in your head and eyes down to the phone.

    Who hasn’t breathed in the scent of a rose and felt its beauty?

    You might say, ‘I do appreciate good things!’ However, we flit, flit, flit from one thing to another without taking a rightfully deserved pause to enjoy a moment.

    Beauty-in becomes your beauty and nourishes your cells and can change a moment.

    How To Have 1000 Healings A Day

    The first step is to consciously look out for sensory-based experiences, which include any sensory input - sight, sound, movement, smell, taste, body sensation, and emotions. 

    Consider simple everyday occurrences, things around you, moments of surprise, or when you feel an emotion of joy, contentment, love, an item you love, etc.

    Anything that makes you feel good, smile, or connect more deeply.

    Next, stay with the experience for 20 or 30-seconds to allow time for the hormonal flow of wellbeing to circulate to your cells. If you are laughing, laugh a little longer.

    Expand. Your. Positivity. 

    ===> You hear birds chirping, stop for a few seconds, and listen.

    ===> You are sitting at your desk, and the smell of dinner is wafting through the house. Sit back and breathe it in.

    ===> You read an inspiring Facebook post, and you focus on what it means to you.

    The opportunities are unlimited and are very important. WHY?

    Because right now, in-shelter we are missing our lives to varying degrees. Maybe you have learned to appreciate small things, like grabbing a coffee with a friend or hugging someone. 

    Truth is, we forget, and over time, we risk living disconnected and returning to the flit. 

    The other day I spent a few minutes watching two little girls laughing and rolling in the grass. It reminded me of a time when Anna, our daughter, and I laughed so hard we were crying.

    Taking time to take in the good accumulates cellular wellbeing. Who doesn't want to feel more joy so simply?

    Here's a little secret: once you get into this healing habit, you will find yourself open to wanting to experience more and more good moments… and soon you will have 1000 healings every day!

    It is a Great Day for a Change - Yours!

    Sanna Carapellotti. MS, Cht.                                                 412.344.2272                                                                 

  • 26 Apr 2020 6:09 PM | Dawn Pomaybo (Administrator)

    This new blog will be hosted by Sanna Carapellotti & Maria Allshouse.  Members may comment on their posts.  The public may view.  We look forward to becoming healthy, wealthy (in spirit) & wise thru their articles!

    Welcome Sanna & Maria and thank you for sharing your knowledge!

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