Sunday, October 15, 2017

A Generosity of Spirit


by Dean Solon

Gentleness with self opens to and reveals a wonderful “secret” teaching: you are perfectly all right as you are

You are perfectly all right as you are.

This gentleness and generosity with yourself unfolds to a feeling and to a sharing of light and warmth, of compassion and lovingkindness, with other living beings.
And so your perception of life and of the world begins to change and to expand…and so the world changes, too.

Sitting…in this moment…in this present and precious moment.
The concoction and connection is already residing inside you.
The concoction and connection is already and always breathing, already and always living, inside you…
waiting to be released,
waiting to be revealed,
waiting to be shared freely.

Dean Solon leads meditation groups on Monday mornings and Thursday evenings at the Resiliency Center.  He has been practicing for over 45 years and facilitating meditation groups since 2003.  He encourages a personal, gentle, non-rigid approach to mindfulness-and- heartfulness meditation.

Loving-Kindness and Generosity of Spirit


by Karen Steinbrecher

In QiGong practice, I lead participants in a “Lovingkindness of the Heart” practice from Lee Holden also called “Lotus Flow”.  We send out lovingkindness with our hands.  This diamond-light is sent to the earth, to our hearts, to one another, back to the earth and ascends up in the shape of a lotus-flower, returning to our hearts, and continuing to ascend up above our heads to the Universe.  We repeat this several times with words of lovingkindness, compassion, forgiveness and peace.  These lovely peaceful words help to bring expansiveness of the heart, inviting joy to blossom in your heart.

To practice opening your heart through the gentle movements and deep breathing of Qi Gong, join me at the center and/or watch a video of Lee Holden introducing some gentle Qi Gong practices at https://youtu.be/zAKqL3elCjg

Karen Steinbrecher leads QiGong classes twice a week at the Resiliency Center, on Tuesday afternoons and Thursday evenings. 

Emotions and Compassion


by Catherine McLaughlin

When we experience emotional pain, our natural tendency is to push “bad” feelings away before we fully experience them.  To be alone with them.  These feelings can get trapped in our bodies and cause physical and psychological pain.

Many approaches to therapy teach us that if we think or behave differently, our pain will naturally go away.

However, this focus on changing thoughts and behaviors doesn’t work for everyone.

There is another way. We can free up the unfelt “bad” feelings when we experience them in the presence of compassion and lovingkindness.  Facing feelings together, we learn that we are not alone in our pain and find a way back to ourselves. 

Catherine McLaughlin, LPC, practices Accelerated Experiential Dynamic Psychotherapy (AEDP) at the Resiliency Center.  If this therapeutic approach sounds like a good fit for you, please give her a call at 267-800-5073 or email Catherine@cjmcounseling.com for a complimentary consultation.

From SAD to Glad . . . Giving grace through nourishing the self and others

by Kristin Fulmer

One of the greatest ways to express loving kindness to yourself and others is with preparing and enjoying eating wholesome, nutrient dense foods. Unfortunately, living in Western society we are often inundated and encouraged to eat quickly and for convenience, a Standard American Diet or SAD. A typical Western diet or SAD is full of unhealthy fats, refined sugars, processed foods, pasteurized dairy, and genetically modified foods that can play havoc with our physical and emotional health causing us to feel SAD, MAD, and overall just plain BAD.

During this holiday season, allow the wisdom of your body and the compassion of your spirit to rejoice with eating a more traditional wholesome diet - a diet rich in pastured meats, wild fish, vegetables and fruits, nuts and seeds, and whole grains, a natural remedy for diseases of body and mind.  

Here are three delicious ways to go from SAD to Glad:

1. Increase your consumption of whole unprocessed nutrient dense foods sourced from healthy and happy animals and organic (if possible) produce. Keep it simple - pastured meats and eggs, wild fish, cultured or raw dairy, vegetables and fruits, healthy fats, properly prepared whole grains, legumes, nuts and seeds.

2. Reduce the consumption of packaged ‘food-like’ products. If you can’t read or recognize the ingredients then don’t eat it! Here’s another clue, if you served this food to your grandmother or great grandmother would she recognize this food? If not, don’t eat it!

3. Get back into the kitchen. Cooking more meals at home means spending more time with family and involving other family members in the meal choice and preparation. There’s no hidden ingredients to worry about and recipe modifications are easily accommodated. Yes, preparing meals at home may take more time but your health and the health of your loved ones are worth it!

Here’s to your health, harmony, and happiness!

Kristin Fulmer, MS, NCC, LPC, NTP, is a Licensed Professional Counselor and Certified Nutritional Therapist, providing individual, family, and group counseling. Kristin utilizes an integrative and functional whole-person, mind-body approach with an emphasis on nutritionally-dense, whole foods approach to improve emotional and physical wellbeing. To learn more about her practice and to schedule an appointment, contact Kristin at (267) 843-4888 kristin@healthybody-happybrain.com and visit her website [insert link to: www.healthybody-happybrain.com]

Monday, September 11, 2017

Lessons from Summer

by Catherine McLaughlin
 
For me, fall is a time to get back into a routine. With three young children, summers are an all-out party for us - my kids want to go all the places and do all the things. In my former life as a School Counselor, I had summers off, so I could make that happen for us. But working over the summer changes things. Here’s what I learned, and what I’ll take with me to next summer.
 
1. Stay on a schedule - Most kids respond better when they’re on a schedule, even when they think they don’t. Remember when they were babies and we tried to nap and feed them at the same times? Being on a schedule also works better for a family with two working parents. Being on a schedule doesn’t mean that life has to be boring - it just provides kids with a framework for their days. Most kids can relax when they know what’s up next.
 
2. Mix it up - Plan some fun activities and surprises. During summer, days are longer, more daylight, more time to fill. Planning some surprise outings will keep everyone guessing and having fun. It will also score you some parent points.
 
3. Maintain your own routine - This is a big one for me. Letting my own exercise and meditation routine fall to the wayside did nothing for my parenting. Like my kids, I need a schedule to be able to relax and feel comfortable. With kids at home all day, making time for yourself can be difficult. Next summer I’ll have to be creative - waking up earlier than usual or exercising after kids go to bed. Practicing mindfulness meditation can be especially helpful, especially when dealing with more family time than we’re used to. 

Happy Back to School!

Catherine McLaughlin is a Licensed Professional Counselor and School Counselor. She sees adolescents and adults in private practice, specializing in issues of adolescence and providing therapy for parents of teens experiencing difficult times. Catherine can be reached at 267-800-5073 and catherine@cjmcounseling.com.

Sunday, September 10, 2017

It’s Harvest Time!! Autumn – A Perfect Time to Nourish the Body, Mind, and Soul

by Kristin Fulmer, Certified Nutritional Therapist

Autumn is officially here, the days are getter shorter, the leaves are changing, and the kids are busy with school and activities. And if you are like me….perhaps you may have indulged over the summer on way too much barbeque, beer, and burgers. Thankfully, the Fall provides us with wonderful opportunities to get back into a routine, reevaluate our needs and make some healthy improvements.

Our body, mind, and spirit flourish when we can appreciate and experience the changing seasons while also being aware of our changing seasonal needs both physical and emotional. For me, one of the greatest joys of Autumn is visiting the numerous local farmers markets and enjoying the bountiful selections of delicious produce, meats, cheeses, teas, and chocolates. As a nutritional therapist, I encourage my clients to become more nourished by eating seasonally, cooking locally produced real food, and sitting down with the friends and family to enjoy lovingly prepared meals. Frequenting local farmers markets also means supporting local economies, local farmers and food artisans, which can enhance our individual health while contributing to a thriving community wellness. It’s a yummy win-win proposition!

Happy harvesting!

Don’t know where to start? Here are a few great places to begin…

Local Harvest, https://www.localharvest.org, connects people looking for good food with the farmers who produce it. For Local Harvest, the goal of the local food movement is to create thriving community-based food systems that will make high quality local food available to everyone.

Farm to City, Real Farmers, Real Food, https://farmtocity.org/find-local-food/farmers-markets/ manages 13 weekly, outdoor farmers’ markets. These markets provide neighborhoods with fresh foods produced in the region.

The Food Trust, http://thefoodtrust.org/farmers-markets , in partnership with Get Healthy Philly, operates 22 farmers markets in Philadelphia, including Clark Park Farmers Market, Philly’s oldest year-round market and The Headhouse Farmers Market the city's largest outdoor market. Many of The Food Trust's farmers markets are located in neighborhoods that otherwise lack access to healthy foods; these markets accept SNAP (food stamp) benefits and Philly Food Bucks to make fruits and vegetables more affordable to everyone.

Pennsylvania Farmers Markets Directory is a helpful search for open air markets in PA,  http://www.farmersmarketonline.com/fm/Pennsylvania.htm

Kristin Fulmer, MS, NCC, LPC, NTP, is a Licensed Professional Counselor and Certified Nutritional Therapist, providing individual, family, and group counseling. Kristin utilizes an integrative and functional whole-person, mind-body approach with an emphasis on nutritionally-dense, whole foods approach to improve emotional and physical wellbeing. To learn more about her practice and to schedule an appointment, contact Kristin at (267) 843-4888 kristin@healthybody-happybrain.com or website: www.healthybody-happybrain.com

Stuffed Heirloom Squash with Sausage, Bacon, Caramelized Onions, and Sage

Recipe by Kristin Fulmer, adapted from MyHumbleKitchen.com

The flavors of the roasted squash with its filling seasoned with sage and cardamom complimented each other well. Sweet and savory filled with spice.

Ingredients:
2 heirloom or acorn squash (suitable for stuffing)
Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Salt and pepper to season
3 thick sliced pieces of (pastured, nitrate-free) bacon, diced
1/2 large sweet onion, diced
1lb ground (pastured, nitrate-free) chicken, pork, beef, bison, or lamb
2 cups market greens or veggies – use whatever you bought at the market (kale, chard, spinach, zucchini)
1 tablespoon, chopped fresh sage
1/4 tsp ground cardamom
1 tsp sea salt
1 tbl apple cider vinegar
1/2 cup sliced preferably raw cheese (omit if problems with dairy)

Method:
Cut the squashes in half, scraping out all of the seeds. Brush with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. (reserve the seeds to toast later with some fats and salt)

Place on a baking stone or sheet, cut side up, and roast at 375F for 1 hour or until its soft and can be pierced with a fork.

Once the squash has been roasted:
In a small cast iron pan or skillet, cook the bacon over medium heat until its fat has been rendered and the meat is brown and crispy. Set aside.

In the bacon fat, saute the onion until it's soft and begins to turn brown and caramelize, add market greens and saute lightly. Set aside.

In a large cast iron skillet or pan, cook the ground pork over medium heat.

Once it's cooked through, add the onion, 1/2 of the bacon, sage, cardamom, 1 tsp salt, and apple cider vinegar. Mix through.

Cook on medium low heat for about 5 minutes allowing the flavors to incorporate.

Stuff the Squash.

Divide the mixture into the four squash pieces.

Garnish with cheddar cheese, fresh cut sage, and the remaining bacon pieces.

Return to the oven for an additional five minutes, allowing the cheese to melt.

Adapted from: http://www.myhumblekitchen.com/2012/10/stuffed-heirloom-squash-with-sausage-bacon-caramelized-onions-and-sage/

Kristin Fulmer, MS, NCC, LPC, NTP, is a Licensed Professional Counselor and Certified Nutritional Therapist, providing individual, family, and group counseling. Kristin utilizes an integrative and functional whole-person, mind-body approach with an emphasis on nutritionally-dense, whole foods approach to improve emotional and physical wellbeing. To learn more about her practice and to schedule an appointment, contact Kristin at (267) 843-4888 kristin@healthybody-happybrain.com or website: www.healthybody-happybrain.com