WILW #25

Sorry this WILW is so late! I have been on the go ever since Uni restarted this term and it slipped my mind to do it on Tuesday when I normally do. So I hope you have had a good hump day and you are on your way to the end of another week so make the most of it!

  • Quoting

“We judge ourselves on our intentions, but others on their actions”

I had a lecture the other day where the lecturer mentioned this quote and ever since it has stuck with me. It is all to easy to see someone do something and instantly judge them and believe they had bad intentions when in reality sometimes our actions may not always reflect our true intentions. So before you judge someone’s actions next time, stop and think, was that their intention.

 

  • Eating

Natural Drift Bliss Balls

Erica and I gave Natural Drift’s bliss balls a go the other day using her pre-made mixes. Safe to say we were impressed! Morgan sells her products at the Mildura Farmer’s Market, but if you are do not live nearby she has an online store where you can order the mixes that are delivered Australia wide. They are so easy to make and seriously taste amazing!

Screen Shot 2016-08-24 at 7.36.45 PM

http://www.naturaldriftmix.com/

 

  • Moving

Gym – Body Pump

After recently joining the gym I have started going to the Les Milles Body Pump classes and loving them! I have never really incorporated heavier weights into workouts but I am really enjoying the challenge it brings. I would encourage you to give it at least a try if you ever get the chance. I think it is important to mix up your workouts and find what works for you best, but most importantly find what you enjoy doing the most!

 

  • Grateful for

Whats app!

Erica set off to Montreal yesterday and although I don’t see her very often but just the thought of her being further away upsets me! However, thank god for modern technology I was able to call her this morning for a chat while she had a layover in New York. It is nice to be able to contact loved ones even when they are overseas.

 

Enjoy the rest of your night.

Love, Peta xx

WILW ED #24

Good morning guys! I hope your Wednesday is off to a cracking start and that your week is flowing by easily.

WILW ED #24

Reading: Salem Falls (Jodi Picoult)

After reviving my Kindle device in preparation for my trip to Canada, I found this book on there and started reading. Although I am an avid reader, I don’t believe I have ever read a Jodi Picoult book and so far I am really enjoying the intrigue and interwoven nature of the plot.

Listening to: Where’s the Love (Trevor Hall)

I found this song today whilst listening (and flowing) to a beautiful Power playlist by Yoga Girl. The lyrics are simply stunning and so powerful. I get the feeling it will be a favourite pretty soon.

Watching: The Rio 2016 Olympics

Although the time conversions mean I haven’t watched anything live, I have been thoroughly enjoying watching the world’s best sports people battle it out in Rio. As an ex-diver, diving is undoubtedly my favourite, but I will pretty much watch and be awe-inspired by any sport.

Quoting:

I found this stunning piece of street art in Richmond a few weeks ago. Enough said. Don’t ever forget it!

Eating: Choc Jaffa Bliss Balls

After a lovely essential oils session with Alice from The Whole Daily, I was lucky enough to go home with a bottle of doTerra Wild Orange oil. I promptly used this magical oil to make some Choc Orange “Jaffa” bliss balls, which comprised of blending almonds, soaked dates, cacao powder and a few drops of the oil. I then rolled them in coconut flour and voila! The results are pictured below…IMG_9047

Pondering: possessions

After taking all of my “stuff” home over the weekend, I was slightly taken aback by just how much stuff I have. We do, of course, live in a society that one could argue is plagued by materialism. I don’t necessarily believe that all stuff is evil and that ridding one’s self of possessions is the key to happiness. Rather, like many things, moderation is key. I certainly know that I feel so much better after I have shed some of my possessions during a spring clean of some sort. As I grow up I also find myself more able to purchase new things mindfully and be a little more honest about what I actually “need” to buy, as opposed to pointless things that will only be temporary.

As spring is almost upon us, I would encourage you to take stock of your personal possessions and cull things that you don’t need, want or no longer use. Be mindful of how you dispose of these things. Clothes, toiletries, shoes and other goods can be donated to charity stores. Check recycling options for other miscellaneous items.

Aiming to: get some sunshine

I am a self-confessed heliophiliac… in other words I love sunshine. Consequently, I was delighted to see the sun come out over the weekend and spent some time soaking up some Vitamin D. Vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin that is synthesised by our cells when they are exposed to UV light, and it is crucial for regulating a range of biochemical processes, including calcium absorption and our mood. It is for this reason and many more that safe sun exposure (no where near burning) is part of a healthy lifestyle. It is safe to say that my Vitamin D levels have been boosted over the past few days, and I am so grateful to have sunshine once again.

Grateful for: my Dad

Over the weekend I went home to celebrate my Mum’s birthday, which was lots of fun and Mum received plenty of love. I am very grateful for both my parents, but I want to take a moment to express particular gratitude to my Dad. He is amazing in his ability to give me unconditional love and support and the sagest of advice when it is needed.


How has your week been? What are you loving this week?

Love Erica x

Friday FFF: John Vasta (+ special Vasta Retreats discount offer!)

After somewhat of a hiatus, Friday Fab Foodie Friend is back and today I have probably one of the most exciting interviews thus far to share with you! Allow me to (virtually) introduce to John Vasta, the charismatic, kind-hearted and incredibly wise facilitator of Vasta Retreats.

For those of you who may not be aware, John is also my Mum’s good friend and business partner, as she wanted to share his wisdom with her friends so much that she coaxed him out of a near retirement to start up Vasta Retreats in 2014. After much anticipation I met John in January 2015 and was then fortunate enough to attend a retreat in July 2014. You can read about my amazing experiences at the retreat here.

John truly is a man of abundant wisdom and love. He walks his talk and lives life to the fullest every single day. His gentle ways, amazing personal story of success and generous approach to life are beyond inspiring. I cannot recommend the retreat highly enough to anyone who is struggling with any aspect of their life, who wants to learn how to fully utilise the power of their mind and intuition or anyone who feels that there is something more than what they are currently experiencing. The retreat allows you to tap back into your innate human wisdom and power in order to live the life of your dreams, free of any illness or negative energy. It is all about using the gifts you already have and is absolutely perfect for anyone of any age, background or level of experience. I’ve seen even people who consider themselves not at all “spiritual” have awakenings and incredible transformations during the 5-day program.

It is for this reason that I am so excited to also offer you an exclusive discount for the upcoming retreat (October 2nd-7th, Hepburn Springs VIC). If you are interested in booking for this retreat then you can receive $100 off the price simply by mentioning Berry, Berry Happy in your enquiry. Please visit the Vasta Retreats website and Contact page for more information or to register your place. Spots are limited so don’t delay.

And now back to the real purpose of this post… John! If you are curious about the retreats but aren’t sure if it is right for you then I would encourage you to read what John has to say.

John Vasta

The one and only John Vasta

1. Tell us a bit about yourself and what you are currently doing in life?

I spent about 30 years of my life in the personal development industry facilitating seminars focusing on the body, mind and spirit. These days I am semi-retired. I think (I don’t like using the word work) having an active interest in something, like a hobbies or doing work activities that you love and stimulate you are the keys to longevity and a happy fulfilling life. Some years ago I made a decision to spend the rest of my life only doing what I love, and so now I spend my life doing retreats several times a year. I also have a small music manufacturing, import and distribution business, I fly paragliders, ride my motor bike and travel. I do these things because they are my passions and I love doing them.

2. What are your passions? What do you love to do/talk about?

I think I answered that in question one above!

3. How did you become involved in teaching and running spiritual and personal development workshops?

About 30 years ago I was managing a casino in Australia and was suffering from an incurable degenerative back disease, I was under a lot of stress and life was going nowhere for me except backwards, or so it seemed to me at the time. I was told by my doctor that my life would be short and there was no cure. I accepted that advice and that there was no other option which made me more depressed and I started to give up on life. Fortunately, the Universe had other plans… Long story short through unusual circumstances I found myself attending a mind training seminar that was being held in the town I was in at the time. After this amazing seminar I put into practice the techniques I learnt and was able to rectify my health issue in a matter of weeks and returned to perfect health. This experience moved me so much that I wanted to let go of the past, start a new life and share this information with the rest of the world and do something that would benefit humanity. So a new direction and career path was presented to me that I threw myself into 100%. I completed the training and study and began presenting mind power seminars (as they were called in those days) all over Australia and then internationally. Over the many years I experimented and developed the work to where it is today in a retreat format.

4. What is one thing you wish everyone knew/realised about life and spirituality?

I love this question because the first realisation I had from my first experience in this field with my health was that I had choices, by that I mean, up until my mind was opened up to the endless possibilities and talent we possess I truly believed like most people of my generation that we were powerless to change so called incurable diseases or had any control over certain events in our life. I realised I was so uninformed and uneducated to my own personal power. My motivation to teach was to let people know that you have many choices to tackle life’s problems, that you are not powerless or a victim, you can have the life you want and dream about if you follow some simple spiritual laws of the universe and put them into practice. All that’s missing is the instruction book on how to do it and the amazing thing is that we all possess these talents in abundance but have never been taught how to use them or had they explained to us, it’s what we should be learning in school. Back when I started it was relatively new science although the ancients knew and practiced these techniques way back in history. Now that science has proved that these techniques work and its being backed up buy more and more research, it is becoming acceptable and very slowly filtering through to mainstream medicine and other areas of life.

 5. Can you tell us a bit about Vasta Retreats and what the program has to offer?

If your life is confusing, you’re unhappy, feeling unfulfilled, have fears that are holding you back from achieving what you want, addictions and habits that don’t serve you, issues with prosperity, unresolved issues with a relationship, issues with love, issues with health or are confused about spirituality, then you’re like most other people on the planet and this is considered normal. This is wrong, your natural state is to be happy, healthy, prosperous and full of vitality, but we are never shown or taught how to achieve this. There is a way of living that allows you to achieve this, it’s what you and I should have been taught at school. Society expects us to naturally know and then go out there in life and make a success of it. It’s like the blind leading the blind, or I like the saying insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result.

The retreat is the best of all that I have learned over my life that enriches people’s lives. It is like a fast track, if you like, to getting to where you want to be. What I share are scientifically proven techniques or tools that enable your mind, brain and body to comply with a new chosen way of behaving and living. It puts you in charge of your life and the direction you want to take, easily and quickly and can be achieved by anyone from any education level and walk of life, from young children to the very elderly. Over 5 days I gently get everyone to experience an easy, yet powerful, meditation and share information about what actually works. You will personally experience dramatic changes throughout the week before you leave. The best way to understand what results people get, as they are so varied according to what they came to achieve, is to read the testimonials on our website.

6. What do you like to do in your down time or to relax?

I like to mediate and spend time quietly reflecting on life and nature as often as I can. Weather permitting, I like to go flying as it’s a form of meditation when floating high up in the sky for me and the scenery is outstanding. When I can’t fly I like to go motorbike riding, I live in a beautiful part of Australia that has rain forests, beaches and amazing scenery and hills so it allows me to do many things. In between all that I run 2 businesses at my own pace. It was my choice to create and live this lifestyle, I’m not obsessed by money or grand achievements and I live the life of my dreams.

7. What is your philosophy or approach to life? Do you have a personal motto or mantra?

I found my life really truly worked and I became happier, when I dropped expectations of how things should turn out, let the Universe guide me, and learned to forgive myself and others and practice acceptance. That’s what I truly believe and live by, I share and explain aspects of this on the retreat.

8. What is one film or book that you would recommend to everyone?

There are many great books, but I believe the book that comes your way through a friend, a recommendation or one that you just pick is probably what you’re ready to read now, so go for it. I have read so many books but the only one that I still pick up and read now is A Course in Miracles (the blue sparkly edition), it has it all. However, I will warn you that you have to be ready or it will just not make any sense and confuse you. I also like Byron Katie’s The Work for relationship stuff, and Conversations with God for spiritual and god issues. The best film that I like is Avatar for a connection to nature and life force.

9. What is your advice to someone who would like to make positive changes in their life?

Get help, don’t try to do it yourself! There are answers out there, you just have to turn over a few rocks to find something that works for you. Books are great for information and giving you some ah-ha moments, but there is no substitute for getting help through a seminar, workshop or retreat, because it is hands on and you can feel it, experience it and own it. Not all workshops are the same but you will get something from even the most basic of them. Listen to what people say and the results they are getting down the road after. But most importantly, don’t give up! There are solutions somewhere out there, your job is to seek and decide.

10. What is the best thing that has happened today?

I woke up! Lots of great things have happened today, but so far the most memorable is I had very cool bike ride through the Blackall Ranges and now I am being interviewed.

11. Is there anything else you would like to add?

I want people to know that if they feel there is more to their life than they are living and they want more, that they do have choices and ways to change their lives that work and are permanent. You just have to look and when it’s in front of you, choose to say yes and do something about it, regardless of the cost.

What did you think? I would love to hear your thoughts, and don’t forget to take up this incredible opportunity to experience a life-changing Vasta Retreat with our $100 discount!

Love Erica x

WILW #23

I hope you are all enjoying your hump day so far. Here is what I am loving this week!

  • Listening to

The rain

Although I am definitely a summer person and much prefer blues skies and the sun shining, I do try to make an effort to appreciate the others seasons and how the environment changes accordingly. Recently in Adelaide we have had quite a few miserable rainy days, which I am not always too ecstatic about. However, I think it is important to take the time to notice and appreciate the rain and weather rather than being annoyed that I can’t do outside activities. Today, for example, I look out the window and it is grey skies with forecast rain. This means that I can’t take my usual transport to Uni (bike) because I would most likely get drenched! So the bus it is. So yes it is an inconvenience, but one that I strive to appreciate more than I complain about.

  • Apping

RunKeeper

runkeeper

I have had this app on my iPhone since I first got it pretty much. I use it to track any activity I do from riding, waking to running. There are plenty of these types of trackers out there but I do love the setup of runkeeper and have become familiar with it. It is a free app that I find great to track the kilometres you do. It keeps a weekly record so you can compare week to week and also allows you to rate your activity after each session.

  • Eating

Peanut butter

Peanut-coconut-spread-and-peanut-butter-1

This will always be one of my favourite foods of all time… there is just nothing like it! These last few weeks in particular I have gone through more jars than I would like to admit to… but I have no regrets! I love that it is such a versatile food and can satisfy almost any cravings. Peanuts also contain many nutrients and benefits that can all be received from peanut butter. However, this is only true of the natural peanut butter that is purely crushed peanuts rather than the ones packed full of sugar and salt. My favourite brand is Mayver’s, which is an Australian owned and run company that makes a huge range of natural spreads with no additives! Ps. you must try the peanut and coconut spread.

  • Pondering

A tutor of mine at University made a comment that has made me reconsider and ponder a few things in my life recently. She said “bite of more than you can chew and learn to chew like hell”. Initially, this kind of comment would go against a lot of my beliefs, such as maintaining balance and keeping in control of things in my life so I don’t get overloaded. However, she went on to say along the lines of ‘these are the days of your life, this is the time you can handle these things so why not do everything you want to?’. Since this particular tutorial I have been thinking about this and am beginning to see her reasoning. If you never get out of your comfort zone or push yourself that little bit further you will never know what you are actually capable of. Another classmate also mentioned that she often looks back on semesters and all the things she achieved/balanced during that period and is in shock of how she managed to handle it all, and I realised I often do a similar thing. I do not spend my days aimlessly, I am constantly on the go or working towards something. Some people may just describe this as “busy” but I think I am lucky to have so many passions in life to occupy my time!

  • Moving

Gym

gym

I have never been the gym type. I have probably only entered a gym a few times in my life, but last week I took up a free 5 day membership to GoodLife health clubs and tried out some different classes. At first it was a bit daunting because I felt very out of place and really had no clue what I was doing and everyone else was rushing around like they do each week. However, after a few classes I started to get the hang of it and found it a lot less intimidating and actually enjoyable! On Monday I committed myself to a membership, so I am looking forward to getting even more familiar with the place.

  • Aiming to

Balance friends and university better

Last semester I found myself fully engrossed in my first semester of university. Almost everything I did was for university and majority of the social events were with my new friends from Uni. However, this semester I am aiming to balance this a bit more and try to regularly catch up with friends from school and home.

  • Grateful for

Water!

After having just over 12 hours without any water in our house because I accidentally ran over a tap on Monday I have come to be very grateful for running water! It is definitely a commodity that I don’t think I truly appreciated enough until it was gone. Lets just say that I am now very grateful and aware of all our running water!

Until next time, stay healthy and happy!

Peta xx

Image source - The Conscious Foodie

5 Natural Ways to Get Over a Cold

Although winter is drawing to a close here in the Southern hemisphere, there is still no shortage of people feeling a little worse for wear. Almost daily I have someone come into work and ask what juice/smoothie/hot drink is best for getting over a cold (FYI: Defender, Detoxify Me & Turmeric or Shroom Latte), and in the past few weeks I’ve had several friends contact me wondering how to naturally shorten the duration of their cold and speed up their recovery.

Before I go on, I must emphasise that this is not to say that you should never take any medications for colds, or that the natural way is the only way. But generally when you get sick it is a sign that your body is really just in need of some RnR and a little immunity boost, rather than a whole truckload of antibiotics.

So next time you feel a cold coming on, try out some of these remedies for a quick and complete recovery.

  1. Rest
    As hard as it can be to do, the first and most important thing to do when you are starting to get sick is to rest. I know that in reality things still need to be done and it can feel impossible to take a day off, so even if you can’t take a legitimate sick day, try going to bed earlier and clearing your schedule of anything that doesn’t absolutely need to be done. Be honest with yourself about what is absolutely essential. You might have organised a dinner with friends, but I am sure they will understand if you cancel to spend the night in. Plus you are doing them the favour of not spreading your germs and giving them the half-full version of yourself. Sleep is an absolute magical time for the body to heal, rejuvenate and fight off infection, so its power in cold recovery cannot be underestimated. Sleep more and take naps, you need it! If you can take a full day or two off then by all means go ahead and do it.

    legs-up-a-wall-624x388

    Image source – The Conscious Foodie

  2. Supplements
    I am fortunate enough to have a mother who has access to some supplements that work wonders on colds, but even if you don’t have a similar contact there are still great supplements that can help to boost your immune system and help ward of infections. My go-to supps for cold recovery are:
    + Vitamin C: this is where the old wive’s tale of eating oranges for immunity comes from. Vitamin C is the absolute key nutrient for immunity and overall good health. Vitamin C powder can easily be purchased at the chemist (it may also be labelled as ascorbic acid), or in tablet form. What is great about Vitamin C is that it is water soluble, so you cannot effectively ‘overdose’ on it. When I am sick I take a strong Vitamin C powder 3 times per day for the duration of the cold, but you can also take one dose daily as a preventative measure. Do note that unbuffered Vitamin C can be corroding to teeth, so avoid excessive chewing on tablets and always drink some water and brush your teeth after you take it. It can also irritate the stomach a little, so if you find any discomfort occurring simply discontinue use or reduce the dosage. Maximum dosage for your body will be (so pleasantly) signalled by diarrhoea…
    + Zinc: along with Vitamin C, zinc is a key mineral that the immune system requires to fight colds. As I have pyroluria I take a zinc supplement daily, but when I am feeling sick I always up the dose. Often you can find supplements that are relatively affordable that have a combination of zinc and Vitamin C, which is definitely a great combo! When searching for zinc supplements there are several different kinds, but go for the one with the highest amount of zinc. Also be aware of the different forms in which zinc can come. I am not an expert in this area, but I found this Dr. Mercola article which explains which forms of zinc are most easily absorbed by the body and how to use zinc in fighting colds.
    + Magnesium: magnesium is an essential mineral that is great for muscle relaxation and aiding sleep, two things which definitely become compromised when you get sick. It is also an electrolyte which is lost quickly when you are sick, so it is important to replenish your magnesium levels. You can once again buy a magnesium powder supplement at any good chemist or health food store. Another great way to get magnesium is by taking an Epsom salt bath. It will soothe those sore, achy muscles and joints and allow the magnesium to be absorbed through the skin.
    + Super Mushrooms: this Metagenics supplement has to be one of my absolute favourite supplements of all time – the combination of medicinal mushrooms packs one serious cold-killing punch! You can get this specific complex from any Metagenics practioner, although you will probably need an appointment and it is on the more expensive side of supplements. I did a quick search of iHerb and found this range of medicinal mushrooms for immunity. As always, consult a health care practitioner before commencing usage of such supplements and always use as directed.
  3. Hydration
    It might seem rather obvious, but when you are sick your cells are often severly dehydrated. Making sure you keep up adequate fluid intake is very important in ensuring a speedy recovery. It is also a great option to add some electrolytes to your fluids, I personally think magnesium is a great option, but avoid the sugary sports drinks that will only dehydrate you more. Sipping on filtered water, coconut water and herbal teas (especially lemon and ginger) is a great way to keep your cells hydrated whilst you overcome whatever illness has afflicted you.
  4. Nourishing Foods
    Everyone is different, but when I am sick I crave wholesome, hearty foods that are light and easy to digest. Soup and bone broth is perfect for this purpose, as it is warming and you can load up on tonnes of veggies with minimal digestive power being required to absorb it. If your Mum used to make you chicken soup when you were sick, there was a reason for that! Some foods that are stand out for colds are lemons, ginger, turmeric, raw honey (great in tea to soothe sore throats) and high Vitamin C fruit such as kiwi fruit, oranges and strawberries. If you are brave and want the ultimate tonic then try blending raw ginger root (1-2 inches), lemon and turmeric (powdered or raw root) with a little bit of water and drinking it. I cannot promise it is pleasant for the taste buds, but it definitely gives you the best hit of antibacterial, antiviral, anti-fungal and immune boosting foods in one (powerful) shot. In terms of food to steer clear of, the usual applies: gluten, dairy, sugar and refined foods only congest you more, suppress your immune function and prolong the cold.Now I am going to go out on a limb and say something that might seem a bit weird, but sometimes when you are sick the best thing to do is actually not to eat… You see, there is an evolutionary reason why we lose our appetites when we are sick, and that is because digestion takes an awful lot of energy. When we are sick our body tries to redirect that energy into building up the immune system and proliferating our cold-fighting immune cells, but it can only do that by taking energy from another system – in this case the digestive system. So if you really aren’t hungry then don’t feel like you have to eat, fasting is actually fairly natural when we are sick. Of course it is equally important that you stay nourished, hence why soup and bone broth are great options, as they are nutrient-dense and require little energy to digest.
  5. Gentle Exercise
    Regular exercise is incredibly important in maintaining optimum immune function, as explored in a great Catalyst episode, so keeping fit really is an important preventative measure. However when you do fall ill, gentle exercise can often aid to speed up recovery. If you are bed-ridden, of course, then just focus on step 1 until you are feeling ready for some movement. When I am sick I like to take long walks outside to get some fresh air and sunshine, or practice some gentle restorative yoga. You can even try these yoga poses for when you are sick.

On that note, I hope this post finds you all in good health. These recommendations aren’t just for getting rid of a cold but also work wonderfully for boosting immunity and preventing any infections taking hold.

Love Erica x