• Lost Password

    Please enter your email address.

  • Summer: Nurture yourself with Nature

    Hiking, walking or meandering through the woods in the summer is so much more special to those of us in the North. Our season is so short here, we have to be very careful not to miss it!

    It doesn’t have to be summer necessarily to enjoy nature, but warmth, sun and wildlife activity tend to make the experience a more pleasant one. There is no comparison to the sounds of summer! A bubbling brook, a roaring waterfall, the birds, locusts and bees all forming another eco system that we rarely let ourselves be a part of.

    Bathing in Nature, sitting quietly in the middle of a field or forest can quiet the mind and lift the spirit. Notice the details around you as you walk slowly, picking up pine cones, shells, stones or fossils. Can you identify the birds you hear? Do you see any signs of wildlife?

    Breathe deeply and slowly, place your hands on your belly or chest and feel your breath going in and coming out, all while standing still or sitting in this natural environment.

    Communing with that part of yourself that benefits from the peace and quiet of your surroundings can lower your blood pressure, reduce your stress, improve your mood, boost your immune system and on and on it goes!

    Shinrin-yoku is an actual practice of Forest Bathing. Specifically walking through a forest at a slow pace, sitting, noticing, and practicing silence to commune with nature.


    What part of nature can you reach this summer? Can you get out and enjoy a peaceful piece of it more than once this season? If you have a high stress job or lifestyle, try to make a point of Nature walking as often as possible. Nurture your soul with the spirit of the outdoors!

    You deserve it!

    • This is Part one of a four Season Nurture with Nature series


    What Cooking Oils to Use in Your Kitchen and Why?

    Ever wonder the difference between cooking oils in the kitchen? We found an article in Yoga Journal from Feb, 2015 that has some great information about three different oils to use for cooking and what to look for when shopping for them.

    Celine Beitchman, a chef instructor and nutrition counselor at New York City’s Natural Gourmet Institute, shared her top three oils and tips for selecting, tasting and storing the right oil for your next dish:

    Shopping: when buying, look for USDA organic label, which certifies it’s free of artificial preservatives, colors and flavors. Pick up only dark bottles, which keep out the light and heat that speed spoiling.

    Tasting: Sample your oil right after you buy it. If you’re not familiar with how your oil tastes when it’s good, you won’t know how to tell when it’s gone bad.

    Storing: If you buy in bulk or have a pricey bottle you don’t want to risk spoiling too soon, decant a small portion for your counter and refrigerate the rest to preserve it.

    Coconut oil: Virgin coconut oil is an anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial that’s used to reduce skin swelling and redness. It can support a healthy immune system. Add it to dishes you want to taste like coconut, such as sweets. It’s good for: Baking, Frying or Pan-searing.

    Extra-virgin Olive oil: The go-to at the Natural Gourmet Institute, it’s high in “good” monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats, which are linked to a lowered risk of heart disease. Bottles labeled “estate harvested” indicate a conscientious producer made it with oversight and care. It’s good for: Low- to no temp recipes since its flavors can quickly break down in heat.

    Sesame oil: Often used in Ayurvedic and macrobiotic diets, sesame oil has been shown to help lower blood pressure and is rich in vitamin E, an anti-oxidant crucial for healthier skin, hair and nail growth. Vitamin E has lately been studied for its role in preventing neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s too. The oil can range in color from light to amber to dark. In general, the darker the oil, the stronger its flavor. It’s good for: Sautéing when it’s refined (processed to withstand high heat), drizzling over cold dishes when it’s unrefined.

    Now you can feel like an expert when next you use an oil in the kitchen!!