Its Christmas!!!… Don’t Fall Off The Wagon.

Merry Christmas Y’all! I hope you are doing well in your part of the world. Texas is having the warmest winter on record this year and it hasn’t frozen over as we expected. Not sure if I like it or not but that’s okay. I have wanted to write this post for a while now but just wasn’t settled enough to do it. I have been resting and recovering from the year we just had. Christmas is the most wonderful time of the year and has aways been for me, but this year is a little different but I’m so thankful. My neighborhood has an annual Christmas decor competition, and the winner is usually the most decked out house. As much as I love admiring decor, if it needs a ladder, drills or nails, I’d rather not be the one doing any of that. After donating my old tree to a family that I felt would better appreciate it, I went a non-traditional route and got a spiral Christmas tree, and I absolutely love it.

It’s the holidays! I know but nevertheless, I’m still doing my best to keep my routine going and not just letting it ALL go…because it may be too hard to kickstart it in the new year. LOL! Here are some of the things I’ve been doing to maintain and improve on during the holiday period.

Culled from the internet.

Staying Hydrated. Being home and not on the go coupled with having so many drink options, it’s easy to forget to hydrate my body because I don’t feel or get thirsty. But making a mental note to drink a minimum of 8 glasses of water every day has been my goal.

Rejuvenate your skin. Waking up and dashing to work or getting home and barely making it through my exercise class doesn’t give any room to really cleanse and pamper my skin as I should. But now that we’re home, dry brushing, Epsom salt soaks, sugar scrubs and pampering my skin is necessary for it to retain its youth and elasticity.

Apply detox foot pads while you sleep. A lot of people have said that detox foot pads are a hoax or that they’re fake. Well, I have used detox foot pads for almost a decade, and they WORK! My sleep is better, I feel refreshed, and my energy levels are up. I feel like people should try good brand names for great results…Try it and thank me later.

Get unlimited at-home facials. It doesn’t matter if you’re a guy or a gal. Now is the time to slow down and really take care of your face. Everyone has a routine or regimen that they follow and now is the time to slow down and follow it instead of just barely wiping your makeup off before jumping into bed. Cleanse, exfoliate, scrub, hydrate, moisturize and spot treat. Remember, your face tells a lot about you before you open your mouth.

Rest. This is when you have earned the right to be a couch potato…and a happy one at best. Rest, relax and give your brain some timeout to just do nothing. Watching garbage TV aka Real housewives are my go-to because I need only two braincells to be entertained when I watch reality TV.

Cut back on excessive stimulants. Your liver will thank you for it. I sat with a doctor friend of mine who intimated me on the rise of health issues because of stimulants; be it drinks or medication. Moderation is the key but if you have to binge during the festivities, have your cleanse or detox lined up afterwards. In Hollywood, people have parties and then have detox sessions afterwards where they get IVs with vitamin supplements to cleanse or repair whatever damage they may have caused internally. I know this sounds extreme but that should tell you something about stimulants and toxins and what they do to our internal organs.

Folks, it’s so good to write again. I hope you get to rest, reflect and enjoy your families this season. From my family to yours, I wish you a very Merry Christmas and an amazing new year ahead. Until I come your way again, I remain

Periwinkle Starr

Kicking Gluten To The Curb!

Hello Y’all! I hope you are doing well in your part of the world. Its getting cooler but not just yet. I’m waiting for a massive temperature drop to switch out my Summer gear for Fall/Winter wear. So until then, it’s temperamental North Texas weather for the next couple of days. But I just cannot wait to layer on. LOL…I know all my Midwesterners are rolling their eyes at this but hey! You are not a tree. You can move. And you don’t have to let the gusty Ohio River winds invade your soul every year. The choice is yours!! Anyways, todays post is about my journey to being gluten free. And by sharing this journey, I hope this can help someone else.

Food is life. It doesn’t matter the culture, region or people. Food is the number one common denominator. When it comes to food sensitivity, its very easy for people to expect bad reactions, extreme skin anomalies, swelling, or itching throat. But, there is a more subtle reaction that I believe is more deadly because the symptoms are milder and many of us fall under this category but are not aware.

A huge amount of the general populace (myself included) eat to curb hunger and attain satiety. In order words, we eat to keep our bellies filled or full. This is very different from eating to ‘fuel’ the body. When you eat food without knowing your bodies needs, your body accepts the food because it has no choice (duh) but it looks for places to store it because it doesn’t know what to do with it. That is why we see an increase in belly fat, fat around the thighs, arms because we have adopted a diet that in many many cases is not suitable for our body type. And the long suffering human body has to do the best it can with the trash it receives on a daily and still keep us alive, keep our hearts pumping and fight off the bacteria and illnesses in our environment at the same time.

I Started Paying Attention to My Body.

The signs were there, but they were very mild so its very important to pay attention to our bodies Some people have instant reactions like rolling on the floor or hives that instantly appear. This is not the case for everyone. A lot more people have milder symptoms that are often and very easily overlooked. Nobody just drops dead without any warning…our bodies are too intelligent for that. The problem is we ignore the signs because they’re subtle and fleeting. Here are some signs you may be sensitive to gluten.

*Being bloated on a daily or after eating certain foods. Ex. Rice and certain grains, baked goods, desserts, milk, certain cheeses, sweets, sodas, sweet fruits, alcohol, heavy carbs etc.

*Gut imbalance. Constant yeast infections. When people hear the words ‘yeast infection’, it’s very easy to think it always has to do with the private areas. Well… we have yeast in our gut and on our skin as human beings. The problem comes when the yeast bacteria outgrows the good bacteria and compromises the immune system. Then there’s a problem.

*Constipation and irregularities. If you have to take laxatives on a regular, or all those fiber powders and supplements, this is not normal and is not healthy. The commercials on TV want you to buy more products without really addressing the root cause or underlying issue.

*Acne. Skin issues. Hormonal imbalances. These three things go hand in hand and a lot of times when the diet is fixed, there will be significant and visible improvement in these three areas.

Healing the Body – How to get started.

*Find a naturopath who is well versed in diet and nutrition as well as gastrointestinal health.

*Removing unnecessary metals from the body. Ex. Mercury amalgam dental fillings etc. This is a whole other post on its own. But I encourage you to look up the side effects of having metals in the body. Don’t just take my word for it.

*Some people may need extensive bloodwork to determine their body type and how better to fuel it. We no longer need to expect to be sick just like our family members were due to our genes. We can start now to make changes to mitigate or completely rewrite our own health path.

*We can start by cleaning out our diet. We owe that much to our bodies. Remember, we only have one.

*Colon hydrotherapy. It’s funny how we get massages, spa treatments, and all kinds of pampering to our outer bodies while very few people take the time to do an internal cleanse of their internal organs and system. I believe in balance. Take care of your insides and your outer body will need less work. Scientist say that the gut is the brain and after doing my own research, I believe it. If the gut is healthy and clean, your mind, will and emotions with be better for it.

*Clean out your refrigerator, pantry and all your secret stashes….yes, I said stashes. With advise from a naturopath or nutritionist, draw up a diet plan that works for your body type and do the best you can to stick to it.

*Read the labels when grocery shopping. Up until now, I had no clue that there was such a thing as gluten free aisles or sections. The market is rapidly growing because a lot more people are experiencing food sensitivities and looking for alternatives to relieve the symptoms.

*Cheat responsibly. A gluten free diet is very hard to stick to 100% because almost every food around us has some form of gluten in it. When you do cheat, portions matter.

Folks, If this post helps one person, it makes all the difference in my world. I have been through it myself and if anything I say on here helps someone else, my work is done. Feel free to share your experiences, like, follow and comment. Until I come your way again…and my hope is that when I do, it will be cooler in North Texas, I remain

Periwinkle Starr

Healing Your Body…Post Pandemic!

Hello Y’all! I hope you are fine and doing great in your part of the globe. Its been a minute since my last posts and it’s been fun but also very intense. The weather is soooo nice in North Texas. I almost don’t want to say it before we wake up one morning and it’s literally back to hell again. LOL. From what I heard, we should be gearing up for another very cold winter and I just cannot wait to layer on. There’s literally a countdown to swapping out my summer wardrobe for Fall but I’m not quite there yet.

We made it to the ember months and it’s something to be thankful for. With the pandemic, the craziness of life and all the other things in between, if you’re reading this post, you’re here and that matters. Looking back at the past months, I would say that 2021 has been a year of getting healthy-er and doing right health wise. I began by making minimal changes. These changes were difficult and still are but the longer I stick to it, I must say that it gets better. Just because it looks like the world is ripping to shreds doesn’t mean we take our focus off living life and doing the things we must to remain in tip top condition all around.

It’s almost baking season! I’m not sure if there’s any such thing as healthy baked goods but I’m going to try. And if you happen to have discovered a way to enjoy baked good that don’t make your body pack on the pounds, please send them my way.

Still staying safe despite the pandemic. Folks, it’s not over and staying in good health, taking your vitamins and being physically active is the way to go.

Get out more…in open spaces. Go hiking, work out in the park, go golfing. Being out in nature exposes you to negative ions that are good for your body and overall well being. Have you met anyone that went to the beach or a waterfall or lived out in the country that didn’t feel at ease or calm-er than us city people? Trust me, it wasn’t the farm animals LOL. Don’t just take my word on it, look it up for yourself.

Get back into your hobbies. Doing things that you really love. Getting back into reading, baking, kayaking, taking dance classes, learning to cook, visiting coffee shops with outdoor seating if you’re not comfortable being indoors. A friend of mine told me about couple who haven’t been seen in over a year. I kid you not. They both work from home, have everything delivered and use facetime for E-V-E-R-Y-T-H-I-N-G. No judgement here. I can understand the fear but if the world was ending, it would have ended a long time ago. We truly live when we do the things that we love, so take baby steps if you must but you’ve got to keep on living life…or a semblance of it as you once knew.

Take a deep breath. A lot of times people think that once you’re healthy you’re good but being healthy is a broad term that encompasses every aspect of life. Rome wasn’t built in a day and no one wakes up in tip top health just because they made a decision the day before to take action. Folks, it takes baby steps, little tweaks, cheat days until you no longer feel the need to do so (hehe…myself included). So until I come your way again be safe, have fun because the festivities are just around the corner!! And…it will only be a little while before its another Christmas. Smile…because you’re still here!!!

Please like, comment and follow for more. I remain

Periwinkle Starr

Poetic Weekends!

Hello Y’all! I hope you are doing great where ever you are in the world. We are in Fall but it sure feels like a long hot Summer. But no worries, in a couple of weeks, we will be layering on again and then comes Winter. Its been one heck of a busy time but I’ve also had time to reflect on a few things. I haven’t had time to write in a while but I woke up feeling poetic today so here goes. Feel free to share your thoughts, comment, like and follow. Enjoy!

Its Beautiful Because I Said So!

Life is beautiful. Its one big maze. From the first time we open our eyes, until the last time the light fades out into nothing. Just like a caterpillar has to wiggle around in it’s cocoon until it breaks free and feels its very first rays of sunshine, so is the struggle of life.

The struggle to be. To drown out all the voices and dare to dream for yourself. The strength to be resilient in difficult times and to be level headed in good times. The courage to be you. The boldness to stand up for what you believe in and to not be afraid to be who you are. The grace to brace yourself against the currents and storms of life. Because they will come.

Knowing who you are and why you’re here is the key to life’s purpose. No one can define that but you. In the stillness and quieting down of your soul, clarity comes. The superficial become unimpressive and the intentions of the world around you become clearer.

Life has its peaches but also it’s darts. Learning to lighten the burden is the key to traveling light and finishing well. There’s so much to learn, so much growing to do…We will take it one step at a time.

Until I come your merry way again, be safe, upbeat and hydrated.

Periwinkle Starr

Breakfast Muffins Without the Top!

Happy new month folks! I hope your are doing well in your part of the world. It’s been a fun and frenzied start to this years Summer. Just when we were all getting back to living life as we once knew it…here comes the variant. And Guess what? The vaccine is just about useless to it. So we are on the precipice of either going back to masks or lockdown. If you ask me neither of these options look promising but we’ll have to wait and see.

We’re in July and I felt it was time to check in on my yearly weight and health goals and so far, so good. I haven’t attained my goals but I’m also not where I used to be so that’s a good thing in my book. I like looking out for new trends in health, wellness and fitness and after scouring the internet for the next best weight loss trend that is natural, low budget, requires no equipment and no payment plan, I came across a Youtuber named Wanyo Mori who has developed a unique exercise that sheds belly fat FAST! It doesn’t matter if you’re a guy or a gal, this exercise works and the results are unbelievable so stay tuned for a link at the end of this post.

Growing up in a society that idolized soccer, I remember a phrase that said ‘Bend it like Beckham’. For the younger generation, David Beckham is an Englishman and one of the best professional footballers who started out playing for Manchester United. He was good at kicking the ball in such a way that it curved and miraculously landed in the opponents goal post. Well…that was when he was young. The older we get, we’re not going to be able to ‘Bend it like Beckham’,…anymore…literally. Then comes the need for exercise, a change in diet, and moderation applied to E-V-E-R-Y-T-H-I-N-G. One of the things I have recently had to do is cut back on artificial sugars. At first, it was extremely difficult but as time went on, I adjusted and now, in a weird way, it’s my new norm. I named this post ‘breakfast muffins without the tops’ because you can still enjoy these muffins and not worry about gaining a massive amount of weight. These muffins keep me full until lunch time and keep the cravings down for four solid hours and counting. Now, if you’re a nibbler, you know that four hours is a long time to go without rummaging in the pantry for a quick treat.

Healthy Breakfast Muffins for Weight Loss!

Ingredients: 2 Cups of Oats (Original), 1 Cup of Flour, 2 Tbsps. of Baking Powder, 1 tsp of Cinnamon, 2 Tbsps. of Chia Seeds, 2 Tbsps. of Vanilla Extract, 1 Cup of Blueberries, 1/2 Cup Apple Sauce, 1/4 Cup Semi-Sweet/Unsweetened Chocolate Chips, 1/4 Cup Dried Cranberries, 2 Tbsps of vegetable oil and 1-2 Cups of Water.

Add baking spray to your muffin pan and scoop unto baking pan. Bake at 325F for 20-30 minutes. P.S: Oats do not need to be overcooked because they dry out very easily so constant checks are recommended. Sorry I forgot to take photos this time.

Trick Your Body Into Loosing A Few Pounds By…

  • Cutting out artificial sugars from your diet as much as possible.
  • Move. Whether it’s via walking, hiking, running, going to the gym or Zumba. The key is to be active the best way you can.
  • Get out in nature. There is a calmness that comes from being out in nature. This helps relieve stress, reduce cortisol and in turn your body relaxes and lets go of stored fats.
  • Laugh…a lot. Find amusement in everyday living.
  • Eat the rainbow.
  • Make smoothies from real fruit and veggies.
  • Maintain a healthy, peaceful environment as much as possible because a toxic surround will up stress levels, which will affect your sleep, what and how you eat (we tend to crave sweet, salty and greasy foods when we’re stressed) and your bodies overall rhythm.
  • If you have an issue with your gut, find a great probiotic that works for you. Eating fermented foods such as pickles, kimchi or sauerkraut can help.

Check out the link here and don’t just laugh. Do it. It works! (2) A 13 minute workout collection! Lead you to exercise – YouTube

Folks, I hope you have a great month ahead!! Until I come your way again with another post, do like, follow and comment. Your insight is not only valuable but helpful to all. I remain,

Periwinkle Starr

Back To Living Life?!

Hello Y’all! It’s been a moment since my last post. I hope you are doing well in your part of the world. I feel like every day that goes by brings me a step closer to living life as it was before the pandemic hit. Texas has been great in getting people back out and into some semblance of life as we knew it before the corona virus and I am so grateful for that. My heart goes out to my friends and Starr readers in Asia, most especially those in India who are having it really rough with a new ‘variant’ of the virus. I am sending you good wishes and prayers and I hope this passes and we can all get back to living as we once did.

A lot has changed in the past 12 months. I’m still working my way back to how it was pre-pandemic. Simple things like going to the gym or swimming. I know a lot of folks who haven’t gone back to the gym and prefer to workout outdoors, in small groups or virtually. How we stay active doesn’t really matter just as long as we keep fit and stay healthy is our defense against getting sick. I recently started walking again after almost a year and it was so freeing to be back on the trail, enjoying the scenery, the sounds, the smell of nature all around and see some of the regulars I’ve come to know over the years. It felt so invigorating and inspired me to write this post about not giving up…no matter what. Sharing is caring and we can all learn from each other so here goes…

The Spiel!

Life Happens…To Everyone. It doesn’t matter if you’re rich, poor, handsome, pretty, unattractive, skinny…..you get the gist; we all have to go through life. A lot of times I don’t understand why especially when I’m in the middle of something, but sometimes, I get a clearer picture at the end of the tunnel or when I’m out on the other side. There’s no escape, we all have to go through things and I’m not trying to be a Debbie-downer but just want you to have a realistic outlook on life in general. We have to be braced, ready and open enough to find the silver lining…in everything.

Be Consistent. Whether its working hard on yourself to be a better version of you; or committing to eating healthy, exercising, or taking ownership of the kinds of people you surround yourself with, or just being mindful of the vibes or energy you put out into the world or absorb from your immediate environment. Be consistent.

Never Loose Sight of the Prize. Whether it’s your dreams, goals or vision for whatever you want to attain in life, never loose sight of it. I had the radio on the other day and heard this phrase that struck a cord with me. It said, ‘Never make a permanent decision based on a temporary situation’, or something along those lines. No condition is permanent and although some situations may be rough right now, it won’t always be that way. Keeping your eyes on your goal takes your focus off your current situation and gives you something to hope for, something to strive towards, and something worth living for.

Always Err On the Right Side. Always do the right thing whether anyone’s watching you or not because, what goes around boomerangs back around. It’s very easy to get caught up in instant gain but the after taste isn’t always pleasant. The best way to live a successful life is to be able to lay down on your bed at night with a clear conscience and have a peaceful nights rest. As easy as this may sound, it is not very common.

Kindness and Patience Go A Long Way. We live in a fast paced world. We want things now…and waiting is almost physically painful. But all in all, we need to remember to be patient and kind to the people we meet in our daily life. So when you’re waiting in line, waiting on the phone or just plain waiting. Curb the urge to start tapping your feet, tapping your fingers, pacing or getting worked up…periodt. Take a deep breath, relax and look for a way to focus your energy, count to 50, do something instead.

Coming out of the pandemic and into life as we have always known it has given us (myself included) time to think, process and reflect on our way forward. So until I come your way again feel free to share your reflections as we ease into life once more. Please like, comment and follow for more from…

Periwinkle Starr

Tell Your Story!

Hello Y’all! I hope you are doing well in your corner of the globe. It’s been a minute since my last post and life has somewhat returned to normal since Snowstorm Uri decided to take a hike. Its March!! Happy New month to you all. I hope your new year resolutions are still on? People say that most individuals fall off the wagon by the end of January but hopefully you’re still in it till the end.

Do you ever have those days where you’re up late and craving all things rich in calories, savory on the taste buds and filling for your belly? Well, this was one of those nights for me. I had been craving pizza all week but tonight was different. It was as if my stomach was saying ‘It’s either you do something about this or neither one of us is sleeping tonight’…jeez. So I do the right thing by looking up the calories in a pizza I would usually get in the past and the time of day I intended ingesting those calories…I changed my mind and decided to make my own; Free of the excess oils and hidden fats. A recipe that I could count all the ingredients on one hand…Ha Ha! Off to the kitchen I went to make my own pizza. Surprisingly, once I got started, the growling in my stomach settled down quite a bit. I started to wonder, best hurry up now before it resumes again. Photos and recipe are below!!!

My post today is about the power of communication. We all have a story. Life happens to E-V-E-R-Y-O-N-E, are phrases we are all too familiar with. I noticed that the most open phases of communication is when we’re kids and have no filter, and when we’re old-ER and no longer care what the world thinks. But there’s a gap between these two phases where we are either outwardly silenced or inwardly feel the need to conceal, withhold, or reveal as little as possible. Keeping up with appearances, not wanting to ruffle feathers, show weakness or simply ignoring things and hoping they’d die off or disappear are some of the coping mechanisms that we pick up along the way. This may appear fine and good in the moment but can I tell you that the burden on the human body is so heavy that emotional and mental weights have now been proven to cause illness, cancer, tremors, hernias, high blood pressure…you name it.

I stumbled upon a show where a neurosurgeon was talking about the connection between the body, the mind and the human spirit and it blew my mind. I later listened/read (can’t remember which), a story of an elderly woman who had a tremor. She had issues with walking and just doing everyday simple things. A neighbor invited her over to join their small group which she obliged since she lived alone and company would be good. On a particular day during the groups meeting, everyone was to share on something that happened to them that they never really opened up about. One by one, each person shared their story – nothing was too big or too insignificant, if it mattered to them, it was important.

It came time for the old lady to speak, she looked down, took a deep breath, and still shaking started talking. Her son had died many years ago. It was devastating. Everyone expected her to get over it and move on after the grieving period was over (technically). But she wasn’t ready. Attempts to talk about it were shut down. It was too painful for her husband to remember. And so, she buried it within her soul. As she spoke, pausing to wipe her eyes every now and again, one of the people in the group spoke ‘you’re not shaking’ he said. The old lady stopped and looked down at her hands. The tremors weren’t there. She could not believe it. She held out her hands and the shaking was almost non existent. The meeting at this point was over, everyone came round to give her hugs, there were more tears but it could only be a miracle that this happened.

When I listened to that story, I feel like the grief she was not allowed to express had to be suppressed. Since it was suppressed, the emotional stress of carrying this burden began to break down her physical body, manifesting itself as a tremor. Folks, I am not a medical doctor of any sort but I strongly believe that our mind, bodies and soul are intertwined and have the ability to affect the other especially when we’re out of sync, stressed, traumatized or holding unto blacked out memories that we have forgotten we even have. I feel that instead of waiting for the ‘I don’t give a rats behind years’, why don’t we give ourselves permission to be our authentic selves and speak our truth…NOW. I feel like old age should be enjoyed and not just spent in and out of medical facilities because of things we could have dealt with.

Disclaimer: Not all ailments are mentally or emotionally related but a lot of them are.

My Late Night (Two Crust) Pizza Recipe!

Crust Ingredients: 2 Cups of Flour, 1/2 Tsp of Salt, 2 tsp of Fast Acting Yeast, 1/2 Cup of Water, 1 tsp of Sugar.

Topping are whatever I had in my fridge at the time: Pepperoni, Black Olives, Pickled Banana Peppers and Green Bell Peppers, (No Cheese TYVM).

Sauce: A combination of Marinara Sauce & Ketchup.

Directions: Warm the water in the microwave for 30 seconds. Add sugar and then yeast. In a mixing bowl, add flour and salt and mix. Pour in the foamy, activated, yeast water. Mix and cover for one hour. Turn your Oven to 350oF. Add a teaspoon of olive oil to the dough and a dusting of flour. Divide dough into two and refrigerate one half for later. Get your rolling pin and stretch the dough out. Get a pan and apply cooking spray. Transfer the dough and stretch some more using your fingers. Add the tomato sauce, toppings and pop in the oven for 30-45 minutes. Its ready. Cravings satisfied. Time for bed!

Until I come your way again. Tell your story, it may be the one thing that can save your life, your health, your relationships…you never know until to speak your truth.

Periwinkle Starr

Something To Smile About!

Hello Y’all ! I hope you are doing well in your part of the world. It’s February already and from what I’ve seen the last couple of days, 2021 is already picking up speed. Its been so beautiful and breezy this weekend and I’m starting to get my hopes up that the weather is going to change in my favor. But who knows what the weather will be in North Texas anyway.

I have decided to start the year off right by cleaning house. I honestly don’t know why I keep watching the show Hoarding, Buried Alive, but I do. It reminds me of when I was a kid and would watch horror movies from behind the couch, wrapped to my eyeballs in blankets. One of those movies titled ‘Crow Haven Farm’ scared the life out of me but I kept on watching…haha! Living in a wealthy and blessed country with retail options for everyone, not to mention the sales happening every other day; coupled with access to credit cards and numerous payment options, ANYONE can be a hoarder. And that’s the Gods honest truth. So if you would like to join the squad and ‘clean house’ this new year, grab a glass of wine or your favorite beverage, a notepad and a pen and a snack; climb into your favorite chair and lets get to work.

Taking Inventory: Going through my home room by room and taking note of what I have, don’t really use or need and what can be traded, given away or discarded. Or you can group things into categories like cosmetics, clothing, accessories (hair, footwear, perfume or even nail polish), cooking utensils (some of us have had items for years that really need to be swapped out with the exception of family heirlooms, keepsakes or antiques), books, furniture, or odd gift items (wink) etc.

Make A Decision: Decide what you would want to keep, what you would like to sell, what you would like to give away and what items you would like to trash. There’s nothing wrong with having stuff just as long as we don’t let the stuff have us. I had this feeling that I had written a similar post to this one and after taking a look back, I realized I had. I think I’ll call this a Part II or sequel of that post so If you haven’t already, check it out at Cash In The Attic?! | Periwinkle Starr (myeamba.com) 🙂 But on the other hand, if you cannot decide, you can always get the help of friends, family or consultants to do it for you.

Reorganize: You don’t have to break the bank but you can spruce up your space by removing unnecessary clutter, make your space vibrant, uplifting and fun! Some times little tweaks to a space change the mood in the room, and even give you a bounce to your step whenever you’re in that space. I love, love window shopping and would give myself a couple minutes to reroute my plans whenever I see something interesting or different. Did someone say squirrel? LOL. But a major part or reorganizing is getting rid of the old and letting in the new.

It’s a new year folks. Covid or No Covid. We are and will always be resilient; and we will keep living our lives to the best of our abilities, being free of fear, being safe and having some sense of normalcy. I have heard of a lot of people who have lost friends and even family to this darned virus and it makes me so sad and more concerned for the future. But never the less, I choose to be hopeful. I choose to love on my family and loved ones and check on my friends. Until I come your way again, take some time to do something for you, something worth smiling about. I remain

Periwinkle Starr

Good Vibes Only!

Hello Y’all! I hope you are doing well in your part of the world? I was up late one night with some time on my hands and decided to get this post going while my creative juices were still flowing…oh the joys of writing. As the name implies, ‘Good Vibes’ is a term that’s easily tossed around in everyday conversation so much so, that we can overlook what it really means or it’s implications. But there is a deeper meaning that the definition does not do enough justice to and I’m going to shed a little bit more light on it in this post.

When I fly, one of the things I memorize once I’m seated in a plane are the safety features, where the exits are located and what to do in case of an emergency. One of the instructions that irk me every time I hear it is when the flight attendant asks us to ‘put on the drop down oxygen mask first before helping your child’, heaven forbid something happens during the flight. This statement has never really sat well with me until it hit me. You have to be OK, alert, or afloat before you can help someone else – irrespective of who they are to you. I notice that no matter how much you may want, wish, love to help or assist or even visualize good things for loved ones; the decisions they take must happen between their own two ears, and the overall outcome is THEIR responsibility and not yours. This is often a hard pill to swallow especially when you have a ‘rescuer’ type personality, but in reality, it rings true. At the end of the day, we have the sole responsibility of creating healthy boundaries, enforcing them, keeping our peace and enjoying life while fulfilling our own purpose. Here are a few things that can and will help.

Learn to Be Kind to Yourself. Good vibes start within you. People tend to be harder on themselves than they would be on others. Stopping all forms of negative self talk or harsh chastisement is something that we may need to be intentional about and catch ourselves a couple of times before our brain can actually breaks the cycle (something I read some where about breaking bad habits and how many times you have to do it for your brain to grow new neurons – ABSOLUTELY AMAZING!). A famous saying is to love thy neighbor as thyself – the goal is to FIRST love yourself, be kind to yourself, be patient with yourself, forgive yourself, and then comes the ‘others’. But how often do we find ourselves doing things for others that we would not even think to do for ourselves – because somewhere, at some point in our lives, we have been trained to think that we do not matter which is so far from the truth.

Get a Backbone. Standing up for yourself verbally, mentally, relationally is very important because it sets the stage and informs those around you that you will not tolerate unacceptable behavior. The backlash will come depending on the health of your inner circle, and you will hear words like ‘stubborn, difficult, opinionated…and more. These are complaints of those who can no longer take advantage, can no longer control, use or abuse you. But keep at it because the world is learning who you are. I guarantee that you will have a little bit more peace after this.

Be Responsible. This is a tough one but being self sufficient or self reliant in life gives you the ability to set the bounds around your life. As the saying goes ‘He who pays the piper, controls the tune’. Self sufficiency is a broad spectrum that could mean a myriad of things ranging from being financially stable or having a roof over your head, to being in control of vital decisions that affect your life. If you aren’t there yet, work towards attaining this goal. It will pay off in the end. There are countless cases of violations that occur just because we are at the mercy of cruel or unhealthy people.

When People Talk, Listen. There is a famous saying ‘Out of the abundance of the heart, the mouth speaks’. As humans, we are always communicating who we are to the world around us, whether it’s being funny, sarcastic, gossiping, slander, non-verbal communication or mental projections. The key is to listen. People say what they really feel, not in grandiose conversations (although that tends to happen sometimes), but in every day chatter. Being an avid listener will save you a whole lot because you will be able to sift out those you can truly trust and those you should not cast your pearls to (literally).

We are Human Antennas. Have you ever met a person, maybe lived with them or worked in close proximity with them who outwardly were nice, did all the right things but in your heart, something just didn’t sit right with you about them? Well, that’s your gut or antenna picking up on something that transcends the physical realm and should not be ignored. Haven’t we all heard countless stories of ‘I had a gut feeling about ‘them’ but no outward proof to back it up’, or ‘They were so charming, I just ignored the feeling’.

Whether You Like It or Not, You Are in a War. You are in a fight for survival, a fight to be, a fight to not just thrive but flourish, a fight to be happy, sane and free. Our everyday life is fraught with things fighting for our attention, fighting to drain our energy if we would just let it, or fighting for our emotions or our time (fill in the blank). We need to fight to keep negative or undesirables at bay in the context of what we can control. The choice at the end of the day is yours.

Hold Your Lines. Do you ever notice that when an unhealthy individual comes in contact with a healthy person who they cannot access, cannot control, cannot manipulate or take advantage of, they become livid, they will hate your guts, they will try to take jabs (or chicken scratches in my opinion) at your armor, but they will not and cannot succeed because you see them, you know what they are about and as a principle, you do not budge or subscribe to those type of channels.

Be Kind to Others. The world has enough evil in it already. Be kind. Do unto those as would like done unto you but still use wisdom. Treating people the way they truly deserve does not make you any better than they are. Put out into the universe what you would like to receive from it.

Skip into the Sunset. Folks, life comes with it’s own challenges – it’s called being human. There are no real super hero’s but there are people who have mastered the ‘Art of Living‘ and I believe the earlier we master this art, the better we will be at doing life well. At the end of the day, if you incorporate these basic things into your routine, things may not automatically snap into instant perfection BUT you will be lighter, you will enjoy the simple things more, you will be a healthier and mentally stronger person all round and giddy enough to skip into the sunset because you have done the best you can. Thank you so much for reading. Please like, follow and comment. Until I come your way again, I remain

Periwinkle Starr

A Food Lovers Paradise!!

The ultimate goal of any food lover is to be able to enjoy the foods we love, not compromise on taste and not gain weight. A Perfect World right? These are three things that are almost impossible to attain because the mantra we’ve all heard is “whatever taste good is probably bad for you…and may cause damage to your body or even shorten your life span”. Disclaimer!!! This post is based on my experience with diets over the years and the things I learned along the way. I am not a medical professional by any long shot but I’m here to give you my experience from an avid dieters perspective so stay with me.

Now, any food lover knows that weight gain is almost inevitable without the aide of exercise, cosmetic procedures, stimulants, food deprivation or weight loss supplements, especially as we get older. Your energy levels reduce, your metabolism slows down and all the signs of aging start to pop up. You notice that your are eating probably the same portions of food but you start packing on weight and don’t know why. There are a couple of people who are blessed with not being able to put on weight no matter what they eat and we envy your metabolism – so you might as well log off now because this post is not for you (just kidding)!

The rule is – There are no rules when it comes to weight loss!

Sorry, I just busted someone’s bubble. This is the reason why some get surgery thinking its going to be the end-all-be-all fix and before you know it they’ve doubled in size – even worse off than before they began their weight loss journey. Lets not even get started on the diet pills and supplements – some of which do work only for as long as you take them, or in other cases may have side effects that have not undergone approved testing. I find that the same way you fool kids into eating their veggies is the same way you can trick your body into not gaining weight by swapping a few ingredients without compromising on taste. Having health conditions like thyroid issues and other underlying ailments might be a reason why diets may not work for some but I believe that all diets should be tailor fitted to a persons body type, specific to their metabolism and guaranteed to work specifically for them. Here are a few things I realized over the years…

Every persons body is unique including the way we burn calories and our bodies reaction to certain food groups. I follow a lot of food bloggers and one of them (Plantiful KiKi) adopts a high carb diet and is as slender as a stick. I tried the exact same diet and gained 6ibs in a week. She later provided a disclaimer several videos later that she is of Mayan descent – and guess what the Mayans ate? GRAINS! Well, my weight loss diet was trashed plus I just added six extra pounds of weight I had to loose.

Eating food in its natural form will help you loose weight…FASTER. I know, late night frozen dinners and Pizza deliveries have saved lives in more ways than we can be thankful for but if you want to loose weight fast, you will need to cut back or cut out processed food and eat fresh. Opt for zero calorie sodas instead or regular soda. I guarantee you, the scale will be kinder when you step on it and yes, you can thank me later.

Food portions matter. Diets always limit what you can and cannot have but that just deprives the dieter until they can’t take it anymore and find themselves gorging insane amounts of food with promises to restart the diet the next day. Or waking up and finding yourself on the pantry floor and not knowing how you got there LOL. Trust me, we’ve all been there and done that or similar. The key is to eat whatever you want but in controlled amounts while bulking up your servings with veggies so you stay fuller longer.

Replace sweet and salty snacks with fruit and veggies. This will literally be painful on your taste buds the first week but by week two, your body will begin to adjust if you stick with it. Instead of buying a tub of your favorite ice cream, swap that out by making your own blend of frozen dessert while keeping portion control in mind as you go. To feed your sweet tooth, make your own granola or bake your own cookies or cake from recipes that are low in calories.

Exercise for an hour EVERYDAY. It doesn’t matter if it’s Zumba, running, dancing, walking, swimming laps, going to the gym or jogging on the spot. When you get into a rhythm of working out, it will be easier for your body to burn the fat instead of letting it sit overtime, making it more difficult to get rid of.

Stay hydrated with water, teas and homemade fruit juices and drinks. You can make your own juices, smoothies, etc. A lot of processed drinks have high sugar or sodium contents along with only God knows what. Make yours and sweeten with honey, maple syrup or other natural sweeteners.

Cut back on fast food or figure out a way to substitute certain items for healthier alternatives. I’m sorry but I had to go there. I love me a juicy burger and hot salty fries any day but that didn’t help my weight or my health. You can swap out the bun on your burger for a lettuce wrap. Instead of getting salty fries, you can get an unsalted, kid size portion or better still bake or air fry your own. I recently came across a story where some lady found a happy meal – burger and fries, that were 24 years old and surprisingly, did not disintegrate. It looked like a week old meal…that should tell you something.

Get enough sleep. Need I say more.

Folks, weight loss is such a passion for me because I have struggled with weight all my life. I believe that the solution does not always have to be life threatening or insanely expensive. The benefits of getting your weight under control far out weigh the temporary discomfort of not giving in to cravings. When your body is healthy, you feel and look better, your confidence increases and you are in a better position to improve your life. Let me know what your thoughts are on these pointers. Until I come your way again, be happy. healthy and upbeat!

Periwinkle Starr