Thursday, September 28, 2017

Havarti Cheese: Great Butter Cheese for Me

September 28, 2017 0 Comments

Havarti Cheese

I just love cheese. I could eat it every day however, I keep it in strict moderation. Or otherwise, I would turn into a big round happy mouse. While most people struggle to control sugar cravings, for me cheese is more of a weakness and hard for me to pass up. I just love to eat it freshly sliced on an antipasto plate.  Oh, happy day!

Havarti Antipasto Plate

On my last shopping trip, I saw some small individually wrapped pieces of white cheese. I grabbed them thinking that it was Monterey jack or mozzarella which both I like equally.  I was pleasantly surprised to find on my first bite that this cheese was something new, Havarti cheese. 

Havarti cheese is a Danish table cheese that can be grilled, melted or served plainly sliced. What I love most about this cheese is its sweet buttery taste and aroma.  Most likely this cheese came to my store by way of Wisconsin and is considered to be a cheese that virtually everyone likes. I bet cooking with cheese is quite delightful. Of course, on my next shopping trip, I intend to get more to specifically make some gourmet grilled Havarti cheese sandwiches.

Cheese has gotten a bad rap nutritionally-wise, because of its saturated fat content.  For the past 30 years, it has been promoted that saturated fat was a major cause of heart disease.  Yet most recently, medical reports are saying that saturated fats do not lead to heart disease.  In fact, saturated fats are an important component in white blood cells and white blood cells identify and destroy foreign invaders in the human body such as viruses, fungi, and bacteria.  So essentially saturated fats play a role in our immune health.

With that being said Havarti cheese is going to be a new favorite in my household.  I am very curious to make my famous macaroni and cheese with this cheese.  

Saturday, September 23, 2017

Dr. Steven Eisenberg: When We Connect We Heal

September 23, 2017 0 Comments


Dr. Steven Eisenberg
is an oncologist who I have been receiving encouraging and inspirational newsletters from for years.  I find his newsletters in my email inbox every Thursday and it seems and more than once they have given me some encouragement or enlightenment at just the right time. His philosophy is based on the premise that when we connect we heal. I believe he supports this philosophy with his medical practice and his personal life.

Generally, I have not encountered many doctors who are personable and charismatic. Most encounters I have had with them has been very antiseptic even though I rarely make appointments.  In some instances, I have felt judged or criticized. There seems to be a wall constructed by objectivity that left me feeling minimized. I know that this is probably due to my own sensitivity. However, bedside manners are not a top priority for most.   

I do not remember exactly how I found Dr. Steven, I know it had nothing to do with health. I believe it had to do with him posting something somewhere that I felt was uplifting and I saw he had a newsletter so I signed up.  I do know that I admire this man.  He reminds me that gratitude is the key to life and human connection can make a life-saving difference.  

Dr. Steven Eisenberg is the founding physician at California Cancer Associates for Research and Excellence (cCARE) in San Diego and he shares stories of magical moments with his patients that teach him how to care for himself and others better.  He seems to be shown through his work how precious life really is and the connections to inner happiness.

Today I received this poem (below) that Dr. Steven wrote and it made me consider the feelings of doctors as they work to treat us. Their fears, aspirations, worries, and motivations. To work in oncology is a special vocation it takes someone who has strength, heart, and nobility. Dr. Steven thank you for all that you do to help others live better.


                                                                         by Dr. Steven Eisenberg
I'm broken.
Aren't we all in some way?
I'm a doctor.
I bandage up people.
Then I get bandaged up again to face the next patient.
To face the world of medicine.
To face my world.
The one I created.
So here I am.
The bandaged bandaging the bandaged.
"Patient" means to suffer.
To suffer sometimes is to be human.
That backache?
You're a patient.
I'm a patient.
We're all patients.
Every day there’s a new patient.
What can I possibly do to help that human being sitting across from me?
Every day a new answer to explore.
Listen to them.
Listen more.
Offer them the best of science.
Offer them the best of nature.
Offer them the best of me.
Then I'm not so broken.
In that moment.
Being with them.


Sunday, September 17, 2017

My Favorite Tombow Dual Brush Pens for Calligraphy and Bullet Journal

September 17, 2017 0 Comments
Calligraphy  Lisa Lorraine

“Just as writing can become calligraphy when it’s creatively, skillfully, and consciously performed, so can all other activities become art. In this case, we are reflecting upon life itself as an artistic statement—the art of living.” 

                                    ― H.E. DaveyJapanese Yoga: The Way of Dynamic Meditation
I love how calligraphy is used in bullet journals. The scripting with all the fancy loops and swoops is just so pretty to look at. I wish I had better calligraphy so I have been working on my skills and see some improvement. I know to get there I need to practice with a real calligraphy pen set.  I have an old Sheaffer set, but I have no inks and have not gotten around to buying the correct refills. Well since I am writing about my lack of inks I am going to take a quick pause and place an order at Amazon right now.......okay order placed.

A few weeks ago, I bought myself a Tombow Fudenosuke Brush Pen Soft Type because I figured I could practice better with a marker before going straight to a formal calligraphy pen.  Also, I saw so many other people were using them on my Bullet Journal Amino. I was skeptical that it would not work well for me because I press down very hard when I write and thought that a soft tip would just collapse into mush with my handwriting. But surprisingly, the Tombow held up. I have really fallen in love with this pen and today ordered three more packs of pens.  

Writing with my Tombow is really a pleasure. I find myself saving to use it on important things to write. I have a system where I have some colored markers from the Dollar Tree that I use to do my drawing, coloring, and shading. Then I have 24 other Sipa fine-liners in really nice colors that I use to do all my text writing. Today, I am excited to order two more Tombow sets. They are dual brushes I think one-side is a fine liner and the other side a brush pen. One pack has 10 bright colored pens and the other pack has 10 secondary colored pens. So if you would like to know what I ordered see below. Once I start laying out my October Spread in my bullet journal I will post about how the pens are working for me.  

 SHOP HERE FOR ITEMS MENTIONED: ==============================================================================================

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Friday, September 1, 2017

My Favorite Looks of Cosmopolitan's Autumn Winter 2017 Hair and Makeup Trends

September 01, 2017 0 Comments
It's September and Autumn is here, so it is time to shake those summery bright pastel makeup looks and beach wavy hair trend for cooler warmer shades of makeup loveliness and smoothly polished hair beauty. Cosmopolitan has set out looks influenced by the designs from top fashion houses which then passes onto makeup and hair gurus.  I am stepping up my fashion game because I see so many new looks that really fit my personality that I haven't seen before.  There is a bit of a modern fashion glamour that is just beginning its run.  To get started I think a new hair and makeup routine is needed.

Mimi Tran is showing that the smokey eye can be refreshed with a new take in using taupes, grays, and cream.  I personally, like makeup that is subtle and natural but also with some level of drama.  This look is it. It says I am comfortable with myself but I am also not afraid of putting my best on display.

I wish that the eyebrows were a bit more defined but maybe that would overstate the look.


Alberta Ferretti also is showing the smoky eye with a stripe of genius in a pop of red. I agree with the placement of the red right in the center of the eye giving the illusion of a fiery halo.

This look to me is very mysterious and makes people take a second look because the red is so unexpected.


This simple slip-knot shown by Jill Sander is a necessity this Autumn Winter 2017.  It is a look that does not need a lot of work to pull off.

I am a big fan of the Pinterest hair. When I say Pinterest hair I mean on Pinterest there are so many cute ideas with slick braided looks, cute twists and such.  I always use Pinterest to come up with different looks so I call any adorable hair look as "Pinterest Hair".


I first saw this look of the sparkly inner corner eye and thought it was an overdone effect. However, Tory Burch has me thinking quite differently as she shows that with a simple and natural complexion and slicked back hair the eyes can be the highlight with a little touch of silver sparkle.


Of all the looks in this post, this look is my complete favorite.  I am "in love" with Anna Sui's Mini Buns.  I have been wearing this look throughout the whole summer.  I think it is very playful and fun.  However, now I see that it can cross over to Autumn Winter seamlessly.

Even though my family has nicknamed this look my "Devil Horns".  I am going to convince them to rename them my little "Sui Mini Buns".


This might seem a bit cliched but Isabel Marant has introduced for Autumn Winter 2017 the "No Makeup" Makeup and I think it is fabulous.  I wear this look a lot. Mostly, because I have no time to go further into it.  When I purposely put on my "No Makeup" Makeup face is on days when I am spending most of the day outside.


When I see this look I think of Autumn Winter nights out. Specifically, I think this makeup only works best with copper eyeshadow. The look by J. JS. Lee is only complete with lush lashes.  I even like the slicked back hair with the wispy bangs.


Another "Pinterest Hair" look, this one is inspired by Jenny Packham.  This romantic hair twist is so pretty. I look the overall look that also includes the makeup which is groomed eyebrows, a bit of eyeliner and the classic red lip.


For me, this Autumn Fall 2017 hair is important and this hair is giving me great vibes from John Herrera.  Starting with Dutch-Girl plaits and twisting them into an adorable low bun just works.


I just figured out that I am a cool tone girl. I never followed too closely trends in makeup and just stuck to what has always worked. Nowadays, I appreciate the hard work of many makeup artists who are able to transform a person face like modern day Manet's.  I am going to include into my everyday look a Marchesa Blush Rose look. My mother used rouge and she would apply it to her eyes, cheeks, and lips and it worked beautifully for her.  I went through a phase when Burgundy was a favored color and I did the same.  I think burgundy is a bit too harsh for me now, so I am going to try Rose.


And I thought that the summer was behind me and no more Beach Waves, but Max Mara is telling me that this look is falling into Autumn as well. It is fresh and managed and needs to run for another 3 months.


This is another look that just makes my heart melt.  Xiao Li believes in the charm of a ballerina bun with uncontrollable wispy hairs and "No Makeup Makeup". It is classic and practical for the Autumn Winter.

I have not ever got into the false eyelash game.  I just struggle to put them on immensely.  I have tried with tweezers by hand and done every tutorial and still struggle. So I depend on Mascara to get the lashes I want. MSGM shows that heavy Mascara can really do the trick to complete your Autumn Winter 2017 look.

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Bullet Journal: Help You Plan Your Life

August 22, 2017 1 Comments

Last month, I came across a video by Ryder Carrol that detailed a day planning system called Bullet Journaling.  With just that one video, I realized excitedly that this is exactly what I have needed in my life.  Years ago I used to be religious in scheduling my life with a Day Runner planner. But, I writer really large and struggled to stay within the constraints of the pre-printed pages.  Also, there were many additional things I wanted to track and many notes I wanted to take.

After learning the bullet journal system which took about 10 minutes.  I was happy to know that all that was required was just a journal and a pen.  The Leuchtturn 1917 Notebook is the favored journal used by most bullet journalers because of it dotted line formatted pages.

I decided to go with a more custom journal because I needed a larger size and wanted to base my journal on my learning to draw, sketch and doodle so I choose a sketchbook.  I have found that once I got past the initial blunders of laying out the first couple of pages it became more clear that I could use my bullet journal to organize every part of my life.  I created pages (collections) related to my social media, exercise logs, productivity logs and wish lists.

I have been bullet journaling for about 5 weeks now and I see an extreme change in the way that I have been able to stick to my plans and effectively get things done. I have read advice that says in planning and setting goals that goals that are written down are more likely to be completed.  Now, I really understand how this is true.  While just scheduling dates of events and todos of things you need to do.  Bullet journaling allows you to recognize that tasks should be done now.

I made a video showing how my first bullet journal is setup, maybe that will inspire you to start yourself on the path to supreme organization and productivity.

Saturday, August 19, 2017

Education Should Be Free

August 19, 2017 0 Comments

In the attached video I visit Southwestern College in Chula Vista, CA. As I walk around the campus I cannot deny my opinion that education should be free. Nowadays a degree is not an achievement or proof of learning and mastery of a particular subject. It is a product to be purchased. It is a badge of privilege that is only for those with the access to money.

Clearly, the industry that benefits most from formal education is a business. Therefore, I believe that wealthy industrialists should carry the load of education through taxation. Banks really should not be able to earn a profit because the nation benefits overall from the result of having more educated people in the workforce. The monetization of education makes it unavailable to a large group of people due to education’s prioritization of profits.

Currently, it is not fair that graduates pay more in taxes than those who do not attend college because they earn more.  However, some of those same graduates are also in more debt.  As many carry the responsibility of their student loans.  A large portion of this student loan money repaid is recovered to banks as profits which just sits in a vault.  If graduates were free from education debt they would have more disposable cash to contribute to the economy. 

As it stands now, the government budgets for unpaid student debt and that money could instead be used more positively to find a free-education system. With the profits removed from education the costs to educate the public would be decreased. Europe has already moved towards free education. Norway and Finland extend free education to international students that are outside of the EU and Germany has abolished fees in all states. 

If we don’t adopt a new free education model soon.  No one will be attending college except those who can afford to pay cash. This will lead to many colleges having to close their doors due to low attendance.  Already across the nation college attendance and graduation rates are decreasing.

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

On the beach priorities

August 16, 2017 0 Comments
On the beach with Mr Øye 👙😊

San Diego has had the strangest summer weather this year.  I barely got to the beach even though I am so close.  I think this says a lot about my current state of mind.  I have not been in touch with nature as I have been focusing on working on my writing.  I always say that I can go to the beach and write from there, however, my home is so comfortable and I have so many things on my to do list that I just haven't felt the need to leave.  Or at least that is what my mind tells my self.

I also tell myself that if I let the summer pass me by it will be because of priorities, not procrastination.  Because I am not delaying going to the beach I am just making other choices.  So I forgive myself for not taking down time to enjoy the summer. Right now, my primary concern is my keeping my writing production schedule on track.  While it is true that I can write from the beach, the time and effort in getting there is the same time that I can get 2 or 3 small things checked off my list.  Frankly, though the weather is also not making a good show of a typical California summer so it is easy to choose work over play.

My most productive times are during the daylight hours.  At night I have a hard time focusing.  I really start to unwind as soon as the sun goes down.  When I am working at night I stick to simple tasks like planning my next day, bullet journaling, and maintenance on my servers and websites.  Therefore, my going to the beach anytime soon may not happen.

Now if I was going to the beach, I found these items as I was window-shopping online.  I do that a lot.  I project myself into situations that would be necessary for me to buy the things I see and where I would use them.  Envisioning in this way I  feel almost as though I have them in my closet already.  

Friday, August 11, 2017

My Tea Meditation

August 11, 2017 0 Comments

I think that the way that you start your day is very important.  If you are resonating on a positive frequency than the rest of your day will move in a positive way.  If you are not, then the likelihood of your day going well is very low.  I try to wake up while it is still dark outside so that I can watch the sunrise as I drink my tea.  

The origins of tea drinking begin as it was used solely for medicinal purposes. I think that its healing properties are undeniable and so I pick my daily tea based on what I believe my body needs.  Good health is important to me along with a sound mind.  So as I start brewing my tea I set my mind on the course of what I want to accomplish for the day and how that lines up with my health and spiritual goals.  

In the above video, I go into detail with what I do during my meditation.  I have started a new YouTube channel and thought I would briefly introduce myself and share my tea meditation.  Now in retrospect of this video, I see how I can make my new YouTube channel a type of meditation in itself.  The whole creating and editing process has brought new levels of stress into my life that I knew was going to happen.  So, to move through this process more easily I believe I will apply mindfulness to my activities with my new YouTube as well.  I want to be successful in being able to express my creativity digitally and cultivate new skills.  I am both anxious and excited about the new journey.  I hope you enjoy my video above, please comment below if you have suggestions or opinions about what I am doing.

Monday, May 23, 2016

21 Early Days Challenge

May 23, 2016 0 Comments

So I have decided to do the 21 Early Days Challenge starting with this morning.  I am normally an early riser.  However, the past couple of months I have gotten out of sync and while I wake up early I am not feeling rested and I am going back to sleep until 6:30am.  Well this 21 Early Days Challenge requires a person to wake up at 4:30am.  This will be a struggle but one that I understand and am determined to overcome.

I know that getting up early really gives you a different perspective on life and gives you a way to control the day.  You have a chance to think about the things that need to be accomplished mindfully, without actually having to do them right at that moment.  For me, there is something magical about being awake while most of my fellow Californians are still asleep. Also knowing that I am awake while the other half of the country on the East is just beginning to start their day makes me feel more connected to the world. 

With this 21 Early Days Challenge I am looking to get back into a more productive mode and unleash more creativity. I am hoping I will work out the kinks of the feeling of blah that came upon me this winter and get my groove moving into the upcoming summer months (my favorite time of the year).  The weather here in National City has been a bit gloomy in my opinion and being a sun sign I am not appropriately connecting with the energy source I usually get from nice sunny bright days.  Waking up at 4:30am should change my feelings, which then will change my attitude, thus changing my behavior and bring me closer to my goals.

I know this 21 Early Days Challenge is not new.  It has been around for a couple of years now but it is new to me and I am inspired.  I stumbled upon it after watching a TedX by Filipe Castro Matos where he dares people to “go beyond natural” in other words, to push past your comfort zones to achieve things you have never accomplished before.  I have so many goals I am working towards without the fuel necessary to get me closer so this 21 Early Days Challenge should act like a catalyst and get me where I want to go.  Wish me success… 


Tuesday, May 17, 2016


May 17, 2016 0 Comments

Cornbread is an American favorite especially in most southern states.  It has come from humble beginnings, such as the “Hoe Cake” and gone on to grace many tables as the “Corn Soufflé”.  Native Americans taught the early Settlers how to ground corn into meal and flour for cooking and so corn became a major food source.  This happened because it is a flexible staple that can be use many different ways in food preparation. When supplies were low for the Settlers corn bread could be made with a simple mixture of water, salt, and cornmeal.  This basic recipe has since evolved.  Most northern states use sweeteners such as honey, molasses, and sugar to enhance the bread like a cake, which southern states use fat, bacon, or lard for a savory flavor. Due to the natural components of corn, yeast is not needed to make the bread rise, which makes it one of America’s quick breads. 

Generally, Native Americans prepared fry the cakes on hot rocks and probably added additional ingredients such as sunflower seeds, nuts, and berries to make the bread more nutritious.  Settlers commonly called cornbread “Hoe Cake” because of the way it was first prepared.  In the beginning settlers instead of cooking the bread on hot rocks they would bake them on a garden hoe that was help up or wedged up against an open fire.   Here is a great tasting basic recipe for making cornbread from scratch.

1 cup yellow corn meal
1 cup all purpose flour
1/4 cup granulated powder
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup milk
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1 egg lightly beaten

Cornmeal, flour, sugar, baking powder and salt in medium bowl.
Combine milk, oil and egg in small bowl; mix well.

Mix mixture to flour mixture; stir just until blended.
Pour into greased 8-inch-square pan.

In preheated 400 degree oven for 20 to 25 minutes or until wooden pick inserted in center comes out steam. Serve warm.