Friday, June 4, 2010


OMG, I went to a raw restaurant last night and I'm going again tonight, not even 24 hours later. The food was face rocking and that's putting it lightly. Seriously I want to try everything on the menu, and I mean everything. Last night I feasted on a sage burger and a slice of pizza. Hey, I know it's a weird meal combination but I was hankering for something savory and exciting and I'd already had a hugh jass salad earlier that day. Oh yeah, I also had a strawberry mango pie for dessert. Yummo. At the request of a friend I took some pictures but I forgot to get a picture of the dessert, oops. In my opinion the pics do very little to illustrate the awesome flavors of the dishes, maybe its the photographer, but hopefully you get the idea. Without further adieu ....

This scrumptious pizza is made with flax seed bread, topped with spinach, tomato sauce, pine nut cheese, chopped tomatoes, black olives red bell pepper, and some kind of crumbles - the name escapes me at the moment. This baby was bursting with flavor!

This foodgasmic burger was served with organic greens, pine nut cheese (I think) and tomatoes between two slices of kamut grain bread. Oh wait, there was also some sort of house sauce on that baby as well. Heavenly!

Moral of the story, if you have never given raw cuisine a try don't be afraid to brave it because you just may enjoy it. Even when I'm no longer on the raw detox, I'll still visit that restaurant because the food was absolutely wonderful. In fact, I'm even more inspired to learn how to prepare more raw dishes.

As for the financial impact, uh yeah, raw eating is definitely not cheap eating. I think I've spent more thus far than I normally would on my regular diet. To be fair, raw eating requires a lot more preparation and if you don't prepare properly then you can and will spend more money than you should. It's the equivalent of going to the grocery store without a list.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Summer Tune-up

Since things have been quite hectic around these parts it's high time for a summer tune-up. Today marks the beginning of my attempt to do a raw cleanse, diet that is. I'm super excited and super nervous at the same time. Thanks to the wonderful blogsophere, there are tons of resources to help me through the next 21 or 30 days. In my last post I promised changes to the blog, changes that would not only incorporate personal finances, but to include other things that I enjoy, such as eating.

Why cleanse?

I usually do a detox/cleanse at least 2x a year. There are certain busy times of the year when I don't have time to focus on my diet the way that I should. Luckily or unluckily, my body responds noticeably to what I put in it. If I load up on processed and junk foods, then I feel sluggish, heavy and just down right not at my best. When I load up on healthy foods, then quite the opposite happens. I'm more vibrant, energetic and alert.

Why raw?

Oh boy. In the past I would do a somewhat vegan cleanse ... except for a minimal amount of cheese. This time I wanted to up the ante and go gusto. Now, if I begin hankering uncontrollably for hot food, I may allow myself some steamed veggies and/or wild rice ... ONLY. Beyond that, no cooked foods ... that's the goal. There may be something that I choose to eat that's not completely raw, like a salad dressing for example, but at this point I will not panic over those types of intentional or unintentional slip-ups.

Since I do love to cook, I'm looking forward to making and possibly creating some new raw recipes. This is a new world to me so hopefully I won't get bored. I think I will have more success doing a raw food detox in the summer months (especially living in the south) versus trying this for the first time in the winter. Hopefully I'll have an arsenal of new recipes to add to my collection. With that, here is a picture of my very first raw recipe ... Raw Almond Macaroons:

The key ingredient in macaroons is coconut, of which I am NOT a big fan. But hey, part of this raw experience is trying new things right? Instead of putting the amount of shredded coconut that the recipe suggested, I used 1/2 the amount and substituted the remaining amount with oats. Bingo!

Here's my recipe in case your interested:
  • 1.5 C of dried coconut
  • 1.5 C of oats
  • 1.5 C of almonds
  • 1/2 C of maple syrup or agave (I used an organic maple syrup/agave blend from Trader Joes)
  • 1/4 C of coconut oil (again I'm not a big fan of coconut so I substituted earth balance ... feel free to use your oil, butter of choice)
  • 1/2 TBS of vanilla
  • 1/4 TBS of almond extract
  • 1/4 TSP of sea salt

Ground almonds in food processor. Mix all ingredients together in a bowl. Using an ice cream scooper or TBS measuring spoon, spoon onto dehydrator tray if you have one. I don't have one so I used parchment paper & a cookie sheet. I put the macaroons on the lowest setting of my oven and left the door slightly ajar. "Dehydrate" approximately 7 hours or so. Of course, if raw is not your goal, feel free to crank that sucker up and bake away. ;-)!

This is going to be a very interesting month! Wish me well ...

Sunday, May 2, 2010

I'm Back ... Updates ... and Shout Outs

I'm Back
.... from vacation that is! I had a glorious
7 days in St. Lucia. Although the first part of this year has blown by, I have felt every single nanosecond of each day. The first four months of this year were incredibly busy and a week in the Caribbean was just what the doctor ordered.

I'm currently working on some changes to this blog. Back in January I confessed my
boredom with blogging and several of you gave me some great suggestions. I plan to update the blog and expand the content. Personal finance is a very fun topic for me but I don't want to talk about it all the time. My finances are on autopilot as I maneuver my way through growing a profitable small business. The last thing I want is to have a "preachy" blog about the do's and don'ts of personal finance, but that will be all too inevitable since I don't have much content that is or will be derived from my personal experiences and situation - at least for now. Without those personal stories, I'm just another blogger saying do this, don't do that, why did you do that, did you think about this. So with that being said, I'm not leaving personal finance as a topic, but I'll be adding a few more topics that are near and dear to my heart ... more to come.

Oh, and I did end up
fixing the car. Crud. This is the last time I'll be able to do any major work on her ... the next episode will result in the purchase of another car. I was just too daggum busy to make the necessary time to research and purchase a car that suddenly.

Shout Outs
Thanks to all of my readers, I truly appreciate you. Special shout out to some of my favorite blogpals,
Christine, Stinky, 444, Josie and Matt, please know that I'm reading your blogs, even when I don't have time to comment.

Until next time,

Saturday, March 6, 2010


***Before I begin this post, I want you to know that there is no update on the car situation. Basically I'm in between bumming rides and renting cars. Obviously I have to do something soon, I just need a few more minutes to think about what I want and can do.

Back to the regularly scheduled program ...

Things have been incredibly busy with the business and I'm definitely grateful. Things are going so well that I'm beginning to feel overwhelmed and stressed. The pace that I'm going at now is unsustainable and I won't last long if something doesn't change. Thankfully someone is coming along to help me two days a week, and I have a really good friend who has offered her assistance as well. While this is going to be a great help for the work load, there's another part that's suffering too - me!

I have one of those bodies that responds well to proper eating. Food really is a fuel for me. When I load up on processed and manufactured "food," I can feel it and my body literally locks up. ***TMI ALERT - Feel free to stop here or skip to the next paragraph. Most nutritionist would tell you that you're supposed to eliminate after every meal, or at a minimum, once a day. Because I've been eating crap like ice cream for dinner, my elimination has been almost nonexistence. We're talking days, if not a full week. As if the lack of elimination wasn't concern enough, my energy level was at subzero. When I wasn't working, I was in the bed. I was beginning to feel like a zombie, moving in slow motion. So now I'm not eliminating and I'm extremely tired, but still not encouraged to evaluate the situation and make changes. It wasn't until I realized that my ability to think clearly and cognitively was severely compromised. It would take me 30 minutes to do something that should have taken 5 minutes. Forgetting basic, simple things was becoming the norm. I'd pick up the phone and completely forget who I intended to call. I'd hit "compose" on the e-mail and forget who I was about to email and for what reason. In the business that I'm in, those actions are UNacceptable! My mind is how I earn a living. It needs to function optimally at all times. So on yesterday, I had an intervention with me, myself and I and we unanimously decided that I needed to do something quick. Seriously, functioning at this level can be catastrophic to my business and if I'm going to fail, it's not going to be because I'm not eating properly and getting enough rest. How crazy is that?!

After the intervention I left work, came home, took a nap for several hours (I'm soo not a napper ... guess I needed it), and then headed to the farmer's market. I spent over $90 on fruits and veggies because I need to reintroduce myself to them. My intention is to significantly increase my intake of living foods and juice daily, like I used to. This morning's breakfast was an egg puff doused with a little kosher salt and hot sauce (two eggs cooked in the microwave for about 1.5 minutes... and btw, I looove hot sauce) along with the infamous apple/carrot/ginger juice:

Instead of grabbing an energy drink for an afternoon pick me up, I juiced one of the many almighty green juice elixirs. This baby had spinach, parsley, apples, ginger & lemon ... delish, you'd love it! Ginger and lemons are a staple in nearly all of the juices I make. I just love those added flavors, especially the ginger.

Results after day 1, significant. I feel better than I have in quite some time and my body is very thankful for nutrients it can actually use and process.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Not At All What I Wanted To Hear!

It looks like the time has come for me to retire my beloved 12 year old Honda Accord! Timing is awful but there's not many choices left. My car started sputtering a few days ago so I took in for a diagnostic test. ****sighing deeply**** It's the daggum transmission - $3,292, catalytic converter - $900ish and something else that I can't recall - $200ish. When you add it all up, we're talking darn near $5,500. Oh my goodness, I have no idea what I'm going to do. This was sooo not in the plans for 2010. Okay, gotta regroup and figure this situation out because I DO NOT, and I repeat DO NOT want a car note EVER AGAIN IN LIFE!

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Mind Your Business

Since I became credit card debt free I only kept one card, which I pay off each month. I haven't carried a balance nor paid interest on this card in several years. There are stories all over the blogosphere and financial pundit sites that warn against the subliminal trickery of the banks to (1) circumvent the recently enacted credit card rules, (2) increase their revenue to offset the colossal amount of bad debt write-offs and other losses and/or (3) find innovative ways to increase their fee revenue ... which has become a major source of income for the banks during the heyday of credit abuse. Well, let this be a warning to you citibank, I shall not be a victim, scapegoat or random target for any foolishness.

It was my idea that I'd keep one credit card for travel and online purchases. Plans changed and I actually use the card for everyday purchases such as gas and eating out. Although my monthly bill is NOT very high, I often have MANY transactions ... many. Such was the case for last month's bill, which included the usual suspects as well as Christmas and holiday what-nots. Much to my surprise when I looked at all of the transactions prior to paying the bill, I noticed a $37.01 charge. Hmm? I looked closer and realized that it was a finance charge. What? So I looked over prior month's bill to see if I paid it after the due date, and therefore incurred a finance charge. Nope. The bill was paid 1 week prior to the due date. Next step ... call Citi immediately! I called, the rep agreed that the finance charge was an error and immediately corrected the account.

Thanks Citi, you get an A for customer service, but an F for effort. I'm sorry. Maybe I've bought into the financial conspiracy theory, the one that suggests big mega monster banks are sneaky, evil and prey on the unsuspected. Perhaps it was an honest mistake because after all, mistakes do happen. Mistake or not, I wonder how many of these "mistakes" go unnoticed by the customers. Hmm, yes, we all should exercise personal responsibility so I dare not lay all of the blame at the feet of the banks. This is just another example about why we must be vigilant about our personal financial affairs. As the saying goes, pun intended, mind your business!

***ps, thanks for all of the comments on my "bored" post. I'll stick around for now. I'm finding more inspiration now that I'm no longer forcing myself to always talk about finances. Oh, and my very first troll ... ha, thanks! I appreciate you too;-).

Thursday, January 14, 2010


Ladies and gents, I'm suffering from a case of blog boredom. My life has changed quite a bit from when I started this blog and now I'm not sure which direction I should proceed. I don't have debt to payoff, my mortgage acceleration goal is on hold and there is no additional money going towards investments or other long term savings. Since branching out into entrepreneurship full time everything financial is on hold. I'm in maintenance mode right now.

So here's the scoop - I'll either take a break or blog about other random things that may or may not have much to do with finances. If any of you have questions that you'd like me to answer via the blog or topics you'd like me to discuss definitely let me know, I could use the inspiration.