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How I clean my crystals

July 23, 2014

I've had a wild love relationship with crystals for as long as I can remember. My mom used to lay crystals on my sister's and my forehead whenever we had a headache or let us hold two beautiful, dark black crystals in our hands when we were scared. I loved feeling so in touch with magic growing up.

These days I have a small collection of crystals and I still use them regularly. Most of them are smaller because I like to take some of them with me when I travel (or move again - I have a couple of bigger ones that make any box super heavy so I am waiting to grow my collection until I have plans of staying in a place for longer than a couple of months).

I realize over and over again that cleaning and re-charging the batteries of crystals is so important and magical. I make it a priority to do it at least once a month but sometimes more often depending on the crystals. I swear that you can see when a crystal needs charging - they start losing their sparkle. You can see the colors fade and the whole crystal doesn't feel so bright anymore and the whole surface feels faint.

This is how I clean my crystals

// rinse them with cold water

// let them air dry on a nice towel, shawl or outside in touch with the elements

// leave them in a spot where they will be exposed to sun light and the shine of the moon (that's why full moon chargings are awesome - lots of good luna energy)

// check on them after 24 hours and see/ feel if they are charged and cleansed if not leave them out for longer

Whenever I get new crystals I do a cleansing ritual which almost works exactly like the above except that I like to add some smudging (I wrote about smudging here) and power charging to it. I usually use one of my favorite incense or a smudge stick and hold my crystal above it and just sway it back and forth. I turn it too so that all sides of the crystal get cleaned.

If I feel like it needs one I power charge it with a word, a goddess card or something else that I love and is powerful to me. If I want to power charge it with a word - I write said word on a nice piece of paper and leave the crystal for at least 24 hours. I love picking goddess or oracle cards to help charge my crystals.

I adore cleaning and re-charging them. It's so easy and in touch with nature and magic. All the good things come together.

Present: I'm loving

July 21, 2014

Excited: about all the bees on our balcony ♥ about apple cake that reminds me of childhood summers ♥ about black toe nails ♥ about baking something new a couple of times a week - makes me feel grounded and all loved ♥ about summer evenings ♥ about what the next couple of months are going to bring ♥ about libraries ♥ the first super moon of 2014 - it was so so perfect and magical 

Making: A new favorite scarf of winter. So far I'm head over heels.
Cooking: One pot dishes. Keeping it simple and fun.

Collecting: Minutes of time spent barefoot.
Drinking: Yogi tea (on cold summer days - because they can get really cold).
Reading: Just finished "Half Broke Horse" by Jeanette Walls. This was such a good one. 
Wanting: Simplicity and clarity on some thoughts.
Looking: At my cats napping in the sun.
Listening: To my ipod mix. Lots of songs I loved years ago. 

Playing: With colors.
Connecting: To my spiritual practice. I committed to singing 108 mantras each day for 30 days.
Wishing: To hug my wife.
Enjoying: Foot rubs and talking late at night.
Liking: TEDx talks. Lots of them.
Wondering: If we'll have more than a week of warm weather.
Loving: That I am baking so much.
Pondering: About bees.
Watching: "The secret life of Walter Mitty". One of the best I've seen in years.
Trusting: That when I'm ready I'll know.

Marvelling: At the first super moon last week. 
Smelling: All the wildflowers.
Wearing: Comfortable and simple outfits.
Following: A couple of new blogs.  
Noticing: The little things to celebrate. 
Knowing: Too many facts about something doesn't always help.
Thinking: About whether I'll be able to finish my scarf in the next 4 weeks.
Admiring: How difficult situations make us GROW.

Sending: Appreciation notes.

Buying: Nothing.
Getting: Fresh produce from the farmer's markets. So good.
Bookmarking: Real life book pages.
Opening: My mind to something I've been scared of. 
Giggling: About funny gifs - like this one.

Feeling: Happy about all the baking I've been doing.

Vegan nectarine walnut muffins (two for two)

July 18, 2014

Yum, yum, yum. These lovely treats were so delicious. And I am so happy that I always have the kitchen stocked for spontaneous baking sessions like this. Such a good idea and these couldn't have turned out better plus they were really easy to make. 

These days I am mostly baking for two so making a huge batch of muffins or anything else isn't working unless you have a freezer. We aren't using our freezer at the moment so I decided to make two muffins for each of us.

Ingredients (4 muffins)

// 1 1/3 cups flour
// 1 teaspoon baking powder
// 1/4 teaspoon salt
// 4 tablespoons brown sugar
// 1 nectarine, diced
// 2 tablespoon vegan butter, melted
// 12 tablespoons unsweetened almond milk
// 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
// 1 tablespoon of almonds, sliced
// 2 tablespoons walnuts

Preheat the oven to 375°F. Start out by mixing the melted butter with salt, brown sugar and baking powder. Afterwards add vanilla extract and start adding the flour and almond milk. I always use unsweetened almond milk - if you are using sweetened almond milk you might want to use less sugar. Blend it all of these together. 

Cut the nectarine into small pieces and add them to your dough, add some walnuts and almonds and mix them with the rest of the dough using a spoon. 

Use a spoon to fill the dough into muffin liners. Bake them for about 20-30 minutes. Our oven is super slow so you might want to check in with yours every now and then to make sure the top doesn't get burned. 
I love the taste of these - this is what summer tastes like. I bet these would also be delicious with some vegan ice cream on the side. 
Bon apetit and enjoy! Happy baking - Yay!

Major shifts on less is more

July 16, 2014

I've been playing around with "less is more" for a while now but last week I felt like a big shift happened and like I discovered another layer of "less is more". It stopped feeling so heavy. It stopped feeling so 'There is still room in my closet - oh I think this would be fun to have - maybe I should have an extra pair of ______ just in case". I feel like we all have this automatic response to empty space (in our closets, in our lives, in our work life), we try to fill it. 

We fill it with more clothes, more work, more busyness, more doing and less being and last week when I had my eureka less is more moment I felt so relieved. I realized that I'd rather have a closet with a couple of things that I absolutely truly adore, love to wear until they fall apart, that make me feel exactly the way I want to feel in my clothes instead of having lots of things that I wear half hearted and that don't light a sparkle in my eye.

What if we could choose to fill our life only with things that makes us truly come alive? This was a major shift for me when I understood that this is actually easier than I thought at first. Less is more used to feel depriving and small, when I think about it today I feel freer and like there is more possibility out there.

We can all do this. We can choose not to buy another t-shirt or another pair of shoes and be able to buy that one thing that makes us feel like pure gold weeks later instead. We can choose to invest in quality over quantity. We can choose to support local, handmade explosions of love and uniqueness instead of buying that shirt that everyone is wearing (unless it totally rocks your world).

From this point forward we can learn to listen to that "ah I'm so excited about how this or that makes me feel" whenever we think of buying something, doing something, going somewhere and then go from there. We can start understanding our real sparkles of wanting and pay attention to those when making decisions and things happen instead of clinging to fear. 

I'm writing about clothes but I can feel this ring true in all areas of my life. Slowly letting go of that need to fill the empty spaces and befriending this fear can lead us to whole new beginnings. How less is more plays a big part in my work - less procrastinating more dreaming and doing. How less is more comes to life in my creative pursuits - less criticising more possibility. How less is more comes to life in my relationships - less small talk more true heartfelt connections. 

How we can start shifting our minds to a less is more attitude

♥ Realizing that less is more is in reality not depriving or starving ourselves but playing with the reality that it might make us feel the way we always wanted to feel

♥ Make a stop doing list (also known as the "things I want less of - list"). When I first came across this while reading Danielle LaPorte's Fire Starter Sessions I just heard a big "YES" inside of me. If you write down everything you want to stop doing you'll see what you want less of in your life.

♥ Understanding that free space doesn't have to be filled and can instead be enjoyed as open room for joy to circulate.

♥ Look around your home and without judgement see what things and belongings turn your inner light on, which things make you feel at home, at ease - the way you want to feel. Just observe and maybe write it down. This doesn't mean you have to get rid of everything else - unless you feel that it is your truth.

♥ Make your own less is more manifesto - for your family/home life, your relationships, your creativity, your art, your work, your health

I can see that this shift will sometimes require more courage than old concepts, but I am excited and ready to play with what rings true in my heart. 

Things I love about summer...

July 14, 2014

in no particular order

...summer hats
...painted toe nails
...people are in a better mood
...more fresh awesome fruit
...evening bike rides
...summer salads
...sunset + sunrise (there's something about summer ones)
...summer rain
...summer = new ideas
...blooming gardens
...summer dresses
...big shady trees
...time with friends and family
...outdoor activities like hiking
...bare feet
...knitting fun things for when it gets colder
...air drying my hair
...just being
...being warm
...white lavandin
...reading outside
...sitting on a bench in a random park
...weekends without plans
...burning old beliefs (summer feels perfect for it)
...cats relaxing in the sun
...fresh flowers from the backyard
...early mornings when the air is still crisp but you can feel the warmth already
...driving in the car - windows down
...full moon and new moon rituals
...looking at old photos (tends to happen in summers)
...my birthday (well that's at the end of the summer but still)
...forest walks
...that it stays light out until almost 11pm
...baby birds, baby sheep, baby cats, all baby cuteness
...laying in bed at night with the windows open
...looking at the stars
...ying yoga
...baking fun summery things
...lavender plants that smell like heaven
...being caught in the summer rain
...simplifying everything
...everyone is smiling more
...homemade ice cream

What do you love about summer? Share away!