My Top 5 – May

1) Coconut oil    Like many people, I used to be scared of eating fat. But there is absolutely no need – as long as you’re eating the right kinds. Coconut oil in BRIMMING with the good stuff – check out more info here –  they explain it much better than I could. I eat it in my porridge, my stir-frys and curries, slather it on my skin as a moisturiser. I think the lauric acid in it is even helping my skin infection! Go get some!

2) Raw desserts     I’ve been thinking more and more about raw foods lately, and treats in particular. Because, let’s face it, we all need a choccie hit now and then. And if there’s a way of making it healthier, I’m all for it! Cue experiments with raw chocolate avocado mousse, chia pudding and raw chocolate brownies. I used this recipe at My New Roots for the brownies – and they are DIVINE. Try them for yourself!

3) Natural skincare    I’ve been slowly switching my chemical-laden skin care products to natural, nicer stuff. Trilogy for the face, Perfect Potion for the rest of my skin, and Miessence for deoderant. All are absolutely beautiful, and work even better than my old stuff. I haven’t yet started tweaking my make-up brands, but I am wearing less, and less often, so it’s a start.

4) My snuggle rug      I really, really dislike the cold. And Melbourne is freezing right now! So I bought a cosy blanket a few years ago to wrap myself in each winter. It’s been getting a great workout these past few weeks! So toasty!

5) Florence and the Machine      I was lucky enough to see her earlier this month – definitely one of the best concerts I’ve been to. There’s just something so magical about her voice. It transports and transforms. Simply brilliant. (And as an aside, how good is live music?)

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It’s time…

The past few months have been hard. But despite the stress, the health issues, the work dramas – or maybe because of them – I’ve noticed a shift start to happen. Instead of moaning about it all, I’ve started asking myself, what have I learned from this? Where has this led me?

And you know what?

I’ve learned A LOT. About myself, about others, about ways to live more simply, to undo some of the harm I’ve been unknowingly inflicting on myself. And all those bad experiences? They’ve turned out to be opportunities to create something new and wonderful in my life.

I’ve had a series of jobs that have either bored or over-stressed me…but they also reunited me with old friends and colleagues, people on my wavelength, people with whom I spent my work days talking yoga, spirituality, food, music, art, health.

Stress mucked up my immune system, and using a particular product from a particular skin care range made my resulting skin issues – now clearly an infection – even worse…but it’s taught (and horrified) me that many of the products we coat ourselves in daily, with claims of being natural, are actually full of toxic chemicals. For example, propylene glycol? It’s found in both my eye cream, and anti-freeze. Gross, right? So I’m really excited to discover that there are so many brands out there thatarenatural, organic, and/or handmade, and that work just as well, if not better, than my old products. Next month I’m even participating in a DIY skin care product workshop – stay tuned for a post all about it!

My doctor still can’t figure out what’s going on with my skin – I’m spent a small fortune on medicated creams, corticosteroids, fungal creams, played around with new (all natural) moisturisers, had blood tests and skin scrapings…the skin scrapings should finally reveal all, I suppose, but in the meantime, instead of waiting around, I’ve been busy making some lfestyle changes with the guidance of my naturopath, to see if I can provide the right conditions for my body to heal itself. Diet-wise, I’m eating more fats, less sugar, almost zero alcohol. I’m dabbling with raw food. I’m working with yoga practices that specifically target the lymphatic and immune system. I now have a job I love and that allows me to get enough sleep. I’m also using coconut oil on my skin again (in addition to a doctor prescribed cream) and, funnily enough, a few days after using it, my skin started to look just the tiniest bit better. Maybe it was just the cream finally kicking it, but it’s a bit of a coincidence, don’t you think?

Anyway, what all the above is trying to say is, I’m happy. I feel good. I’m learning and making mistakes and re-configuring.

It’s necessary.

It’s kind.

It’s time.