Honey Lavender Hot Chocolate

I’ll bet you’re wondering how Lucas is doing! Well, wonderful! If you recall, he had hip dysplasia, due to what one Vet said was a herniated disc – and the other in town said “long-dog” syndrome. But then, when we went in for his degradation in health, they found tick and mite disease. The nurse said, “When the meds kick in, his hips will be better.” And sure enough, that’s what happened. As soon as his system cleared up, so did his hips! He still has the tiniest sway in his hips, but is running like mad, stealing socks, taking paper from the waste can, and playing with Tiko, like a puppy again! I am SO happy for him, and for us! Love you, Lucas!

Recipe of the Day – Lavender Hot Chocolate

Ingredients:

2 c. almond or coconut milk

1/8 c. cacao powder

2 tsp. honey, or 3 drops Honey-Flavored Stevia, liquid

pinch turmeric

2 grains pepper

2 grains salt.

1 sprig of lavender, ground fine

Directions:
  1. Place milk and cacao in a small sauce pan and turn to medium heat. Whisk until dissolved.
  2. Add in  honey, or honey-flavored stevia and whisk until melted.  Add in the spices – turmeric makes cocoa creamy! The pepper ignites the healing elements of the turmeric, and salt makes chocolate wonderful! You can also just throw in a sprig of lavender without grinding it up.

Word of the Day – curación – healing

Tip of the Day – Try it with peppermint or ginger!

Geranium Tea

Did you know you could make things with geranium leaves? And they smell amazing! My good friends Darina and Oracio gave me Bulgarian Geranium to plant, and Bulgarian Rose Perfume. Wow! What treasures, both the friends and the gifts!

Recipe of the Day – Geranium Iced Tea

Ingredients:

 5 c. water

 1-4  Geranium leaves, depending on the strength you like it
1 heaping tsp. mint leaves
1/2 tsp. chamomile flowers
Ice cubes

optional – sweeten with your sweetener of choice, stevia, coconut crystals, honey.

Directions: Bring water to almost a boil, then throw in the mint, chamomile and geraniums. Turn off heat and add sweetening.Cover and steep 20 to 30 minutes.  Strain into a pitcher and chill. Pour over ice cubes and add fresh sprigs or leaves, if desired..

Word of the Day – geranium –geranio

Tip of the Day – Darina puts them in her jams and jellies!

DIY Sweat Lodge

Here’s my new sweat lodge – made with carriso – like guadua and bamboo but tougher, more resilient and bendable. Wilson Picoita made it! You dig the hole. Then put sticks with room underneat. Then, seven big stones, sticks again, then seven more, in the traditional way. You light and tend the fire for about 3 hours, letting the stones get super hot. Then, remove the fire and sit in your tent, with a bucket of water and eucalyptus leaves. Every 15 minutes, or when you want more steam, pour a cup of water over the rocks. There’s your truco – your steam bath! I’m so happy. You feel amazing agterwards, especially if alternately get out and take a cold shower. Whew! My skin always looks so good afterwards.

Word of the Day – truco – steam bath

Tip of the Day – Start slow, just a few minutes  at a time, if you’re not  used to steaming. Don’t let yourself get dizzy or faint!

Tom Kha Gai

First my daughter took the pain away. Then, several days later when it returned – another Reiki friend took out another layer. Then Thom – the Body Alignment Specialist. I think he healed me in one session. i really do. people stopped in the streets to tell me how amazing I looked. It’s amazing what being free of pain can do to your face. He presses gently, with strong hands, into the muscles that are incorrectly tensed, relieving the pressure with zero pain. And engages the muscles that need engaging. I’ve never had my sacroiliac put back with such ease. He also taught me to stand, sit, bicycle and swim correctly. And I am still out of pain, whoaaa…

Recipe of the Day – Tom Kha Gai

Ingredients:

1 1” piece ginger, peeled
10 kaffir lime leaves or 1 Tbsp. lime zest and ¼ cup lime juice
6 c. vegetable or low-sodium chicken broth
1 Lb. tofu or. skinless, boneless chicken breasts, cut into 1” pieces
8 oz. shiitake, oyster, or maitake mushrooms, stemmed, caps cut into bite-size pieces
1 1/2 c. coconut milk
2 2. fish sauce or soy sauce (We don’t have Fish sauce here)
1 tsp. coconut sugar
2 stalks fresh lemongrass, tough outer layers removed
Options: peanuts, pineapple, chili  oil, cilantro leaves with tender stems, and lime wedges (for serving)
  • Using the back of a knife, lightly smash lemongrass and ginger, then cut  into 4” pieces. Bring lemongrass, ginger, lime leaves, and broth to a boil in a large saucepan. Reduce heat and simmer until flavors are melded, 8–10 minutes. Strain broth into clean saucepan; discard solids.

  • Add tofu or chicken and return to a boil. Reduce heat, add mushrooms, and simmer, skimming occasionally, until chicken is cooked through and mushrooms are soft, 20–25 minutes. Mix in coconut milk, fish sauce, and sugar.

  • Divide soup among bowls. Serve with chili oil, cilantro, and lime wedges. Sprinkle with peanuts.

Word of the Day – ayudame – help me

Tip of the Day – You can also do light surface cuts along the sections, which helps release the lemon flavor. Then blend them in a food processor.

Green Smoothie Bowl

I’ve been doing my water therapy for two weeks, and have been out of pain nearly the entire time. Maybe one hour of day with ice after working out. Oh, my gosh! It’s a friggin’ miracle!

Okay, Here’s the skinny on the pools in Vilcabamba.                                                                      -Hotel Paraiso – $4, never warm,  but you get to use the sauna, steam room and jacuzzis.          -The new Old Folks Home. $3, heated by solar panels, so wait for the late afternoon when the sun has heated the pool,  but you get to use the workout room and if you wait 5 minutes the shower is hot.  But you can’t use it weekends when they clean the pool, and evenings are reserved for the residents.    And a 100-year old man may hit on you, but it’s okay.           -Hosteria Vilcabamba – $7. Free if a group eats there. If you tell them ahead of time they’ll heat the jacuzzi and steam room, but not the pool. They need two hours to heat the others. -El Rio Chamba – Across from the Zoo, in a beautiful setting. They often have Saturdays free swim!                                                                                                                                                                     La Molinda – Before the Hotel Izchcayluma,  on the right. Not only is it the warmest pool, but it’s $2 to use the pool. The showers are HOT. The jacuzzi is nice and warm. The steam bath is extra, but it looks wonderful. And you can eat there, too! Open 7 days a week and they will give me a monthly discount.

Recipe of the Day – Green Smoothie Bowl

Ingredients

  • 1/2 ripe avocado

  • 1 lg ripe banana, frozen and sliced

  • 1 c. berries of choice

  • 1 handful spinach or  kale, stems removed

  • 1/3 c. coconut, almond or oat milk
  • 2 T. sunflower or chia seeds
  • 1 c. pineapple or mango, chopped and frozen
  • options: 1 tsp. cacao nibs, chocolate chips or shredded coconut

Directions: Put 1/2 c. of your nut or seed milk in the blender. Add 1/2 of the bananas, 1/2 of the berries, and 1/2 of the pineapple or mango, and all of the spinach and avocado. Blend well. Divide smoothie mixture between 2 bowls and garnish with the rest of the sliced fruits. Add t opping options like granola, cacao nibs, chocolate, granola and coconut.

Garlic Coconut White Sauce

I saw a package of White Sauce in the store, and as usual, thought I’d just go home and make it! Great for your gluten-free noodles and breads, pizzas, etc….!

Recipe of the Day – Garlic Coconut White Sauce

Ingredients
  • 2 T. Coconut Oil
  • 1 green onion, chopped fine
  • 3-4 cloves garlic
  • 1 tsp. fresh or dried herbs
  • 1 c. coconut cream
  • 1 tsp. miso paste or soy sauce
  • pinch salt
Instructions
  1. In a small saucepan over medium heat, melt the oil. Reduce the heat and add the onions and garlic. Simmer 10 minutes until tender.

  2. Allow to simmer for 3-4 minutes or until tender Add the cream , miso, herbs and salt and stir until smooth. Blend, if you like it more creamy.

  3. Store in a sealed jar or container in fridge for up to 2 weeks.

    Word of the Day – salsa, sauce

Tip of the Day – A lot of my friends would use butter or ghee in this recipe.

Oatmeal Yucca Bread

Here’s what my famous Neurologist brother says about the herniated disc: “Swimming is ideal for a herniated disc, Dot. Start with waist-deep wading 15 minutes, three times a week. Then progress to either holding on to the side of the pool or kickboard and kicking. If you can get up to freestyle swimming, you should be in good shape. Advil is far safer than other meds.”

The non-impact element combined with the exercise and blood flow will do wonders. Just be careful not to over fatigue the muscle groups. Maintain an easy adaptive stage. 

D- Okay! I will do exactly you as you say.

is it true that it can actually start healing, Pat?

P -Absolutely……just slowly…..

Recipe of the Day – Oat Yucca Bread

Ingredients:

  • 2 c. yucca flour
  • 1 c. Oats
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 c. Water, rice water ir potato water from cooking your rice or potatoes
  • 1/4 c. Coconut crystals or sweetenr of choice
  • 3/4 c rolled oats
  • tsp. baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1 egg

Preparation:

Preheat oven to 350° F (175° C). Mix dry ingredients. Then make a well in the batter and add the egg and water.Pour the batter into a nonstick baking pan (I used a non-stick 8-inch cake pan). Spread the batter out evenly  Bake for 30 minutes. Allow the bread to cool before removing from pan.

Note: I placed the bread in the oven under the broiler for a few minutes before serving the next morning to warm the bread.

Word of the Day – yucca – cassava

Tip of the Day – Okay, Vilcabambans, there is yucca flour in Jesus and Nancy’s store, right now!

 

 

Lavender Coconut Sugar

Life is so….regular at the Equator, so even, it feels like you could’ve designed this like a movie. 5:50 a.m. cue the Roosters’ crow. 6 a.m. Dawn….the Pacific Horneros to sing their song. Evening – 6:30 p.m. lights out, 7 p.m. cue the lightning bugs. 8 p.m. Listen for the doves. Look up and see a million stars.

Recipe of the Day – Lavendar Coconut Sugar

Ingredients:

4 c. lavender flowers

1 c. coconut sugar

Directions:

Place the dried lavender in the bowl of a food processor and  pulse for a few times to chop it into small pieces. Add the coconut sugar to the processor and blend well, for 15-20 seconds, until the all is finely ground. Voila!
Word of the Day – lavanda – lavender
Tip of the Day – Use on breakfast toast, cinnamon rolls, oatmeal, chocolate, frozen banana ice cream, yum!

Muscle Relaxant Tea

Been having a lot of trouble with my back lately – the tail end of the watering/dry season, where I spend hours in the garden. Here’s my relaxing tea for tired and painful back muscles/herniated disc. Helps me sleep, too!

Recipe of the Day – Relaxation Tea

Ingredients:

1 c. chamomile flowers

1 c. lemon balm

1 c. passionflower leaves and flowers

1/2 c. grated ginger

1/3 c.  poppy seeds

1/2 c. valerian

Directions: For a big batch, mix the herbs above. You can cut it down to one teaspoon, where it says one cup, and 1/2 tsp. where it says 1/2 cup!

Word of the Day – sedante/sedativo – sedative

Tip of the Day – Chamomile is a mild sedative, and lemon balm improves mood and is a mild pain reliever. Passionflower (above) is another mild sedative, very calming, and ginger enhances the effects of the other herbs! Add stevia or other sweeteners to taste.

 

DIY Muscle Relaxer Soak

DIY for muscle pain. What a relief to a herniated disk, to help your muscles relax. Put ice on afterwards!

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups Epsom salt;
  • 1/4 cup fresh rosemary leaf, chopped; or 6 tsp. crushed rosemary
  • 3 drops lavender essential oil; or 3 tsp. crushed leaves
  • 3 drops chamomile essential oil or 3 tsp. crushed leaves
  • 3 drops peppermint essential oil. or 3 tsp. crushed leaves

Directions: Mix in your essential oils, or leaves then add the salt and add the rosemary leaf. Store in an airtight jar . Keep in a cool dark location.

Word of the Day – musculo – muscle

Tip of the Day – Use for tired, achy muscles!