Give it away for free

I drove to Castine, Maine from Boston this weekend to go to a wedding of a friend I love supah dupah style.

I was BEYOND appreciative of Google Maps.

I logged on, put in my location and my destination and POOF! Directions to Castine, Maine.

Wow.

And this place is pretty off the beaten path so I was beyond happy to see, very clearly, how to get there.

Driving up there, I sat in immense gratitude for this FREE service. Wow, I thought, I did not have to buy a map, I did not have to buy a GPS and I did not have to rely on ‘the force’ to get me there.

Google gives a lot away for free. Email, searches, images etc etc. Yes, we could go on and on about how much money they make in ads and blah blah blah but I am not interested in all that. I am just so grateful for all their free services. Facebook is free, Twitter is free, so much great stuff (especially on the ‘net) is FREE!

For the past few years I have loved listening to internet marketing talks and classes (for free, of course). I love Marie Forleo and recently she pointed all of her subscribers to Eben Pagan, a big internet marketer guy. I listened to his free talks for a week! He was then selling his program, of course, but not in an obnoxious way and all of the free talks were GREAT and gave a ton of fabulous information (if you are into that kind of stuff LOL).

In his talks that week, Eben suggested that if you are in business, and especially if you are trying to drive more business to yourself via the internet that you should MOVE YOUR FREE LINE!

That’s right, give more stuff away for free. And not just any stuff, YOUR BEST STUFF.

Then, more folks come your way and while they won’t ALL buy stuff from you or sign up for your stuff, you have increased your audience and now a larger percentage of potential buyers are at your disposal AND they will be thinking of you as a trusted expert (and ideally you are :)).

All this got me to thinking not only about business but about life.

How often do we hold back?

How often to we ‘love’ but with conditions?

Shouldn’t we move our free (love) line?

I think we should.

I am not emotionally fit enough (yet) to do so because I am in fear of being taking advantage of or then always being expected to ‘love.’

I have some work to do but will, on occasion, move my free line. Because I do not want to live in this ‘fear’ – one I have created myself, so I will push myself in the direction I would like to go. I’m tryin’!

How about you?

What are your thoughts on moving your free line in business AND in life?

Let me know! I’d love a discussion on this.

Thanks!

Love 🙂

Adrienne

P.S. Btw, Castine, Maine is amazing and beautiful! I am completely enamored by the Maine Coast right now. So get there if you can! Highly recommend.

A Letter To My House Cleaner

I don’t have a house cleaner but if I did, this is what a letter to them would say:

Dear (Future House Cleaner),

I love you.

I love that you clean my house so that I don’t have to.

Not that cleaning is above me, because it is not. I just hate doing it. I’ll do laundry, make beds, organize shelves, and cook all day long but clean? I’d rather snuggle up to a big, nasty, hairy bug and I HATE BUGS. A. lot.

I cannot thank you enough for coming to my house every week and cleaning our home. Not only do I have more real time but lots more MENTAL time that is not used up thinking about how I should be cleaning. 

Here is your big Christmas bonus.

Here is your birthday present.

Here is a card just because. 

Here is a big tip added to each weekly cost.

Can I hug you?

I have never been so happy to have someone help me and words cannot express my appreciation and gratitude.

YOU ROCK.

Thank you,

Adrienne and Family

It is my intention that within a year, this is a note I can really write. 

I would love love love to have a house cleaner.

Can you tell?

What do you want? 

Write a letter in the comments below.

xo

Adrienne

Whole Wheat Banana Bread

If you read my whole wheat blueberry scuffin post, you will know that I have been baking more these days. Well, a bit less in the summer but it still is nice to have some healthy-ish baked goods around especially for the kids.

I love this ‘nanner bread for many reasons, and not just cuz it’s delicious and cute.

I have the opposite problem that most parents do with my oldest (who just turned eight). She gets PLENTY of micronutrients as she eats lots of fruits and veggies, vegetable sushi, bags of sunflower sprouts, and chlorella tablets. It is the macronutrients I find hard to get in. She is not much of a protein eater (of any kind) and as she has gotten older has shunned avocados, nuts, eggs, and most fish. So in this recipe, I finely chop whatever nuts I have around and add them in. I also add organic, sugar free yogurt for more nutrients and it makes the bread super moist.

I hope you enjoy!

Whole Wheat Banana Bread

2 cups whole wheat flour

2 eggs

1 cup yogurt

8 T melted butter

3-4 ripe bananas

1/2 teaspoon sea salt

3/4 teaspoon baking soda

1/3 cup sugar

splash vanilla extract

1/2 – 1 cup chopped (rough or fine in a food processor) nuts of choice

I use mostly organic ingredients but use whatever you have.

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees

2. In a large bowl mix sugar and melted butter. Make sure mixture is cool and then add eggs, yogurt, salt, baking soda, and vanilla. Mix well.

3. Add in bananas and smoosh with a whisk or spoon until bananas are chunky and well incorporated into the mixture.

4. Now add flour and mix well but do no over mix.

5. Add mixture to 2, 9X5  non-stick bread pans (mixture should fill about 1/2 of each pan)

6. Bake for approximately one hour, checking after about 50 minutes as each oven is different. Stick a toothpick or knife in the middle of the  loaf and if it comes out clean, it’s done!

7. Remove from oven, cool, and enjoy!

Please let us know if you tweaked this recipe in any way and came up with a fab variety!

Thanks!

Love,

Adrienne

The plight of a Conforming Non-Conformist

When I was a little girl, one of my favorite books was Harriet the Spy.

In one of the books, in 9 year old Harriet’s voice, a chapter opens with:

‘I am a non-conformist.’

I didn’t even know what a non-conformist was, but I knew I desperately wanted to be one. Or at least believe something with conviction, like Harriet, and then state it with confidence.

But that never happened, well, not exactly.

I’ve always desperately wanted to be different but at exactly the same time I have wanted to be just like everyone else.

I love edgy, fringy-type stuff and things (and people) that do not fit into the box of what society ‘says’ we are to do/say/think. I have always rubbed up against all that but never really taken the step to completely join in or claim anything as my own. Probably because I love all things pop culture and silly and cute. I love fitting in, the ideal being ‘popular,’ and cute boys. 😉 It seems as though you cannot do both, conform AND non-conform.

So where does a gal like me go? Where is my tribe?

I claim nothing. I feel democrats and republicans have worthy things to say but feel neither is really what we need. I love wearing black (a lot) and big, chunky shoes but also love floral retro/vintage girly dresses. I once slam-danced (but it hurt! owwww!) and LOVE loud heavy metal and punk rock. But I also sing at the top of my lung to Kelly Clarkson and Justin Timberlake and can sing pretty much any Top 40 song on the radio right now (message me and I will give you my phone number and I will sing for you! I’m a wicked good singer). I will eat a salad as big as beach ball and spent many years preaching the benefits of raw food but these days I eat an occasional burger! I went many years without a television and will sometimes not watch tv for many weeks but I am currently deep into the latest Keeping Up With The Kardashians season on E.

The list goes on and on.

So I decided to claim it. Whatever ‘it’ is.

I am a Conforming Non-Conformist!

I embrace all my likes and dislikes and I’m happy for you and all you love or do not love.

I think our society loves a label and many folks feel super comfy when they can join something and feel part of something. I get that totally because I feel that way too. But never enough to join in or wave any kind of flag. I can’t pigeon hole myself into a ‘thing.’ I love it all!

Sometimes it is lonely because there’s not a tribe to fit in with or a group to hang out with where you feel like ‘these are my PEOPLE!’

BUT I love my friends and their diverse personalities and the fact they they put up with me and all my nut bag-i-ness. And I am loving meeting new people (you know who you are!) who are exploring this world with the same kind of wonder and ‘let’s do this’ attitude.

I think now, in my forties (!!!) I am more comfortable with myself and my sometimes all-over-the-place personality. I am embracing it all and it feels good, as I am beginning to appreciate everything all the more because I am not trying to be cool or fit in or be edgy. Just more of an appreciator of things that I resonate with, whether they be ‘cool’ or ‘edgy’ or ‘normal’ or ‘status quo.’ And while sometimes it is a lil lonely, I don’t feel sad about it, I just think:

IT’S ALL GOOD! As my friend Jodi likes to say.

What are your thoughts?

Conformist?

Non-conformist?

Joining me in my conforming non-conformist parade of whatever?

Do tell.

Love,

Adrienne

Pineapple Green Juice

Last week we went to Cape Cod for a few days and we were able to visit with a good friend (check out his awesome Cape Cod, Martha’s Vineyard and Nantucket tote bags here) and his fabulousa wife.

They just bought a new bangin’ juicer, The Hurom Slow Juicer. It rocks.

I decided to bring some stuff to juice at their house so we could check out the new juicer!

Pineapple, cucumber, ginger, mint, and spinach.

It was sooooooooo good!

I have a Champion juicer at home, which I do like very much but since I witnessed the rock star that is the Hurom, I am coveting that one.

This morning I made us some Pineapple Green Juice. Adding mint and ginger to it really elevates the taste and the healing qualities but I was keeping it simple for me and the girls. And, btw, pineapple has groovy anti-inflammatory qualities! Woo hoo!

Pineapple Green Juice

One pineapple (cut off top and skin)

one cucumber (peeled if not organic)

1/3-1/2 head of celery

greens of choice – one morning I used parsley and today I used kale, a few handfuls works great

Juice away!

Yummy.

Baby loved it too!

Do any juicing lately?

Do tell!

Love,

Adrienne

The power of having nothing left

This morning at 5:25 am it was clear.

I have nothing left.

Nothing.

Zero.

Zilch.

My resolve, my patience, my personality, my joie de vive, it’s all gone.

My beautiful daughter, 20 months old, has begun waking at night again and nursing like a wolverine any chance she gets.

I am like a mama of a newborn, walking around like a zombie, snapping at anything and everyone. Except that new mom glow is long, long gone.

AND I feel like I am losing my mind (well, what’s left of it).

Yesterday I was very, very angry at it all.

WHY? WHY? WHY? I kept thinking. I just want to feel ‘normal’ again (and I had as of a few weeks ago, everyone was sleeping great and nursing was down to once or twice a day). I was excited about just about anything and everyone.

Then :::::screeeeeeeech:::::: we travelled, baby got a little virus, and was teething (AGAIN).

Back to waking at night and nursing all the time. And to add insult to injury, my lower back is all mussed up.

My perfectly awesome personality 🙂 cannot handle much sleep deprivation and hormonal flux. So I’ve been a hot mess and completely pissed off at my situation for the past few weeks.

Then this morning, while baby was up again for the third time and crying because I was trying to let her go back to sleep on her own, I thought (and with strong conviction):

I AM DONE.

I HAVE NOTHING LEFT.

It was complete surrender to the situation. I even began to chuckle. It was all actually quite funny.

Then a strong, yet very peaceful resolve came over me. And I decided to take charge (you know, as much as one can ‘take charge’).

No more nursing*. No more going in at night. No more waiting for things to change. And off to the acupuncturist asap so we can get baby a good qi adjustment (mama probably needs one too LOL).

And with my ‘taking charge’ feeling came a feeling of complete surrender. Yes, I am going to take some action but I am at peace with what is. AND I feel strongly about moving on with some things that I have been procrastinating because I have been waiting to feel better, be better, know better, whatever. No more waiting, life will never be perfect. There is never going to be a perfect time to do anything. So I am not waiting another minute (okay, maybe a few days but not much longer!).

Even though I had the worst nights’ sleep EVAH and feel like shit on a stick today, I am so much happier and feel so much lighter than yesterday. I actually felt my back relax a little when I really take a few moments and feel these good (and surrendering) feelings.

So if you are at your wits end with anything, ponder just letting it all go, giving up and being with what is. It seemed to work in this situation (sometimes you are forced into but sometimes I think you can lean into it and really feel and experience it) so maybe it can work in all situations. I’m sure gonna try it.

You?

Lemme know!

Love,

Adrienne

*I feel strongly about the importance of long-term nursing (if that works for you) and nursed my older daugher for 2 years. But I am becoming resentful and cranky towards my baby and that seems counter-intuitive. I feel, in my particular case, it is time to stop. Mamas usually know and whatever you decide regarding nursing is often the best for your situation. And sometimes all you can do is what you can do.

 

Whole Wheat Blueberry Scuffins

Is it a scone?

Is it a muffin?

No!

It’s a scuffin!!!!!

I never baked.

Well, there were the days of the ‘wake and bake’ but that’s a whole nuther story and style of baking altogether.

I did not want to bake because I feared baking ingredients.

I believed that the ingredients used in baking were BAD!

Flour, butter, eggs, sugar.

BAD. BAD. BAD.

Yet, I was eating baked goods out of the house because I craved them. And I usually did not eat high quality baked goods and then would feel felt quite crappy all around for doing so.

About a year ago I ceased fearing much of anything and began living a lot more.

Then one day I decided to unabashedly bake something.

I used flour, eggs, sugar, AND butter.

It was fun.

And quite delicious.

It was nice to have baked goods around.

So I kept on bakin’. And was happy to do so because I could control what I put in them and did not always have to make something completely decadent and over-the-top.

Lately, I’ve been baking the scuffin. Scones are too dry IMHO and muffins can be tricky.

I use all organic ingredients, whole wheat, real everything, and not too much sugar.

They are super delish.

Whole Wheat Blueberry Scuffins

2 cups whole wheat flour or flour of choice
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup sugar or more if desired
1 teaspoon baking powder
4-5 tablespoons cold butter, cut into pieces
1  cup frozen blueberries (or fresh) or add in of your choice, chocolate chips and walnuts is a good one!
2 large eggs, beaten
1 cup yogurt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

All ingredients used were organic but you can use non organic, of course.

Preheat the oven to 350°F.

Lightly grease a large (or 2 small) baking sheet, or line with parchment.

Whisk the dry ingredients in a bowl. Add the butter and work it into the dry ingredients with your fingers or a food processor just until butter is flecked throughout. Gently mix the blueberries with the dry ingredients.

Stir together the eggs, yogurt, and vanilla extract. Add to the dry ingredients and stir very gently, just until combined.

Scoop 8-10 portions of the mixture onto your baking sheet/sheets. Do not worry about shape or if one has more mixture than the other. Just go for it.  And you can make smaller or larger ones if you’d like. I’m okay with whatever you decide.

Bake the scones for approximately 25 minutes, or until lightly browned and a knife or toothpick inserted into a scuffin comes out dry.

Take off baking sheet and place on wooden cutting board or plate to cool. Or eat right away! 🙂

Enjoy!

Let me know if you try them or what your favorite baking treat is!

Love,

Adrienne

Connecting to your light

There is a light that is inside each and every one of us and it shines very, very brightly.

Yesterday, I could not connect to this light and I think that is one of the reasons I was so darn cranky.

I picture this light as being an elongated diamond or a tall candle light that shines a very bright, yet soft white light, permeating through us stemming from our core area.

I think I feel crankiest when my outside self, be it my physical body or my mental state, feels so so very far from this light.

Because I have felt and connected with this light many times over the past few years and it feels so good.

And effortless too.

The times I have felt it most is when I have not been doing anything and to be truthful, I wasn’t trying to connect with it at all. A few times it really came out of the blue like the most perfect gift from the universe.

These times of connection brought deep inner peace, a calm sense that all is well, and joy was all around. And life was not any different. There were no outward changes (that one might associate with feeling good like a money windfall, weight loss, a new love, or some sort of material gain). The only thing that had changed was me and my thoughts. The times this came out of the blue, I seemed to have cultivated it by not trying to do anything at all. Seriously, a few times recently I have just stopped. Stopped trying, stopped striving, stopped obsessing about the past and future and just spent time being.

So if you resonate with anything I am saying, just try this.

See what happens if you stop trying so hard. This does not mean you don’t do your best or stop having goals or dreams. But I know for me, I have spent a lot of time in the past few years strangling the universe trying to make things happen. Being desperately attached to outcome, time, and details. When I stopped all that, I actually became more creative and more abundant (especially in the things that mattered). I would not have traded in the peace and joy I felt for anything in the world.

I do get frustrated when this connection gets lost and I feel so far from it. This usually occurs when I begin trying to control everything again and thinking I can make this connection stronger, better, fancier. 🙂 But I will tell you as I will remind myself. Have faith. It is there. We are only human and cannot be in this light 100% of the time. No, I truly believe we cannot in our human state. Does that mean every time we are away from it life sucks? No, we are just living and experiencing the world and as we all know, it’s not always a party. But can we live near this light and spend lots and lots of time bouncing around it? Yes, I know we can. And the more we all believe, breathe, trust, let go, smile, and have some fun, we can spend more time than not with this light we all share, that is for all of us to experience and enjoy.

I truly believe that it is up to you to come up with your own special way to keep your connection strong. Be it mediation, prayer, being in nature, throwing fun parties, spending more time with your kids, being more creative, helping others, just being quiet or all of the above, there is no one way, just your way. And we all deserve it. The world is a much better place with happier people around. And remember, I don’t mean happy, shiny people who no one can relate to. Live your life with all the ups and downs and connect with your light as often as you can.

Please share your thoughts on this and any suggestions you have with connecting with your light and your true self more often.

Love,

Adrienne

what to do when you are a cranky b*tch

the beginning of the week was lovely.

the middle of the week has been not as lovely.

what is a gal to do when her intention is to not be so bitchy and to feel more more at peace with the present and with life in general?

i am realizing that just because you have ‘seen the light’ or maybe even rubbed up against it the light, it doesn’t mean that every day is going to be all kittens and roses.

you will have shitty ass days. and that won’t feel good.

like today, i don’t feel good. my spirit is wonky. i feel wonky. i kinda wanna punch someone in the face.

not super spiritual is it?

sometimes you have to just go with the flow and just be. cranky pants and all.

i have tortured myself far too much fighting how i feel. things are always a smidge better when i feel cranky and crappy , don’t fight it so much, and don’t get all crazy town trying to figure out how to get out of this feeling as quick as possible. i always wind up drinking too much coffee, eating too much food, snapping at my kids or my husband. instead of just being and being okay with some crankiness.

i’m so glad i wrote this post to remind myself that it is okay to be cranky and worse to be crankiER and all pissed off that you’re cranky.

🙂

with love and crankiness,

adrienne