Whether you consider yourself an artist or just a “dabbler,” there is something so wonderful about the Japanese art of Sumi ink painting. A close relative of calligraphy, Sumi ink painting is usually a monochromatic technique that relies on water-based inks along with special pens and brushes. Whether it is calligraphic writing or Sumi painting, there are four essential implements in this East Asian art form: they are the paper, ink, brush and inkstone. In China these four items are known as the Four Treasures of the Study, and in Korea the Four Friends of the Study.
Archive for the ‘Zen Living’ Category
We’ve all heard our super-tan friends bragging about how dark they get during the summer months, but they may not realize how “leathery” their skin will someday become. It may be nice to have some “color” on your cheeks or a tan-line after vacation, but consider how all this sun exposure may affect your skin. The sun’s rays can do more than cause wrinkles and age spots; overexposure to ultraviolet rays is also the number one cause of skin cancer.
During the summer, it’s especially important to stay hydrated for optimal health and beauty. Your body will crave more fluids as you perspire more. While pure water is always best, sometimes you want a little flavor in your refreshment. Unfortunately, many popular summer drinks are filled with sugar and chemicals that offer no favors in terms of your health or hydration. But there are many other good choices, and you can enjoy a refreshing summer beverage without all of the chemicals and sugar. Here are five great recipes.
This is a different twist on citrus-flavored water. Cucumber is a powerful beauty food, and this refreshing beverage infuses water with the flavor of cucumber. Cucumbers are high in vitamins A, C, and B6, as well as folic acid. Best, the drink is super easy to make and really delicious!
1 medium cucumber, cleaned and cut into ½ inch slices
2 quarts of pure water
Combine cucumber and water in a large pitcher and allow to sit for one hour or longer. Serve cool.
This popular Mexican drink infuses water with your favorite fresh fruit.
4 cups pure, cold water
2 cups of your favorite fresh fruit (berries or papaya?)
Stevia to taste
2 teaspoons of fresh squeezed lime juice
Place fruit and water in a blender and puree.
Place a small sieve over a pitcher and pour mixture into it, straining the liquid into the pitcher. Discard solids.
Add lime juice and stevia.
Garnish with lime wedges.
Iced Rooibos Mint Tea
Rooibos tea is high in antioxidants and flavonoids, so it promotes youthfulness and great skin. Over a little ice with mint and lemon, it’s a refreshing and detoxifying summer beverage.
6 Rooibos tea bags
One lemon, sliced
Several leaves of fresh mint
Stevia to taste
1 gallon of boiling water
Pour water over lemon, teabags and mint leaves and steep, stirring occasionally, until liquid cools. Remove tea bags, pour into a pitcher, and refrigerate. Serve cool or over a little bit of ice.
Lemons are high in vitamin C and promote alkalinity and cleansing in the body. The basil adds a refreshing flavor to this sugar-free lemonade.
½ cup of freshly squeezed lemon juice
4 cups of cold water
1 cup of fresh basil leaves
Stevia to taste
Place basil in the bottom of a pitcher and muddle it by slightly crushing the leaves. Combine lemon juice and water and pour over basil leaves. Add stevia to taste. Chill, and serve over ice.
Cilantro and Jalapeno Limeade
Cilantro is loaded with antioxidants and aids in detoxification, while jalapeno can help rev up your metabolism. Lime is high in Vitamin C.
4-1/2 cups of water
1 cup organic cilantro, washed and chopped
2 large jalapenos, seeds and ribs removed and chopped
1-1/2 cups of fresh lime juice
Stevia to taste
Lime slices for garnish
Pour water over cilantro and jalapenos. Steep for 30 minutes at room temperature, and then cover and chill for 3-4 hours. Strain the mixture into a pitcher and stir in lime juice. Add stevia to taste. Serve over ice garnished with lime slices.
Enjoy. If you like these drinks, give us a shout out on Facebook.
Thanks for the great drink advice from Kimberly Snyder. Visit her site at http://kimberlysnyder.net
(Makes about 4 servings)
This is a great soup for this time of the year. I never really considered myself a hardcore cauliflower lover…until I started making this delicious soup. Whenever I make it I consume a good deal of it. It’s raw and easy to digest, and contains turmeric, which has wonderful anti-inflammatory and alkalizing qualities. Turmeric is an Ayurvedic spice that has amazing antioxidant properties. It inhibits oxidation and protects us from free radical damage, and also helps us clean up metabolic waste. It also supports our liver, while adding some color to this soup!
Even though it’s raw, I don’t like having this super cold. I like to warm it up to room temperature, which takes about 30 minutes or so out of the fridge, or you can warm it gently over the stove.
1 medium head of cauliflower, with outer green leaves removed and chopped into pieces
3 Tbs. organic, unpasteurized miso paste (if you don’t have this you can just add more of the high quality sea salt at the end, adjusted to your taste)
½ ripe avocado
2 cups filtered water
Juice of 1 lemon
2 ½ Tbs. of low sodium tamari
½ tsp. turmeric
Chopped parsley, as a garnish
1 tsp. Himalayan Sea Salt
Add all ingredients and blend until smooth before serving. If you’d like a thinner texture, try adding a bit more water. Enjoy!
-Compliments of Kimberly Snyder (http://kimberlysnyder.net)
As someone who watches consumer trends and attempts to predict new ones, I am always fascinated at how they seem to “trickle down” from one segment of our culture to another. Environmental concerns are a terrific example of this. Once the domain of the auto industry and other emissions-producing corporations, it soon became apparent that we all needed to become ecologically-conscious consumers.
We’ve all heard about restorative sleep, restorative dentistry and restorative justice, but what about restorative yoga? What is different about this new and interesting form of yoga, and why should you learn about it?
As more people embrace the healing benefits of meditation, they learn that some “accessories” are essential to this practice. While it’s certainly possible to sit on a mat in your living room and meditate, many people find it nearly impossible without a proper cushion and a meditation gong or chime.
Over the centuries, the Japanese art form called Ikebana has grown to become a modern form of expression around the world. Once limited to Japan, Ikebana is now a category in many international flower shows. It aims to bring nature and humanity together through an intriguing form of flower arrangement that is thoroughly unique.
Depending on where you live, there may still be snow on the ground, but not for long. Days are getting longer and temperatures are gradually ticking higher, which can only mean one thing: time to take some time out to bask in the sun. Spring is also the time to replenish your collection of “sunwear,” and I don’t just mean sunglasses. Sunny days are the perfect time to accessorize with silk scarves and sun hats.
Happy New Year! No I’m not behind – I’m talking about the Astrological Year which began on the Vernal Equinox. On March 20th, the Sun was re-born in the courageous, innovative and pioneering sign of Aries. This fire sign is inspirational, spontaneous, fearless, and independent and yes, often unpredictable.
As several of the planets including Venus, Mars, Mercury and Uranus are also refueling in Aries, spring fever is upon us. And ‘spring cleaning’ is the least of it! Aries is undaunted by obstacles and enjoys being the initiator. But the cosmos does not plan to have the youthful and inexperienced Aries making all the decisions this month. A Full Moon Lunar Eclipse on the 25th is one of the first, but unmistakable signs, our best interests are not served by an attitude or approach of ‘full steam ahead’. Not unless we care to emulate the fate of the indomitable but unfortunate Titanic, which by the way, met its misadventure in April a century ago.
When the earth stands between the Sun and Full Moon, it is a harbinger of change – often endings or culmination points. This particular eclipse spotlights issues associated with Taurus – the need to own, accumulate, and collect, and Scorpio – our need to cleanse, purify, heal and release. This is the month to give serious consideration to everything in your life – from relationships to the salt and pepper set on the kitchen counter. How do the people and things in your life reflect you and your values? Be honest with yourself and release what is no longer working and open up to your future. Although you may not be able to replace the loveseat that reminds you of your old boyfriend, do what is possible to recycle and release. Then treat yourself to something within your budget that reflects your dreams for your future. How about a salt lamp? Earthy and practical Taurus will approve both the function and beauty and Scorpio will appreciate the cleansing and spiritual properties. Make all your decisions winning ones this month with a conscious approach.
C.A. Brooks is a clairvoyant astrologer, writer, speaker and coach
You can find her at 12Listen.com and read her weekly astrology column in Mark’s Power Peek at 12House.com. She hosts a daily radio show “A Course in Miracles Daily Lessons” on 12Radio.com at 7am Pacific – 10 Eastern. You can also tune into her weekly Astrology radio program, Simpletales, on 12Radio.com every Tuesday 11am Pacific – 2 Eastern.