the original kStyle blog.

Saturday, May 26, 2007

So Much More to Discuss

On the pursuit of beauty, but today I'm off to see the Italian Renaissance sculpture at the MFA and to shop for new, more beautiful carpet, and to seek to embody the beauty and grace of motion at NIA class. More anon.

Walk in beauty,

Thursday, May 24, 2007


Is beauty a frivolous pursuit?

Saturday, May 19, 2007


I don't know what's wrong with me lately, but I just don't want to do anything I "have to".

I'm usually pretty fastidious. But I let dishes go 2 days, until every surface--counters, kitchen table, coffee table--was covered. I spilled popcorn on the rug yesterday and haven't vacuumed it up. I finally unloaded and re-loaded the dishwasher (that's right, I have a dishwasher--no excuses) just now, but I refuse to wipe down the counters or do the handwashing items tonight.

I was like this at work last week too, dragging my feet.

What's going on? Is it the incessant rain?

Thursday, May 17, 2007

Cleanse Day 4: It Ain't Easy

OK, so I just ate a whole package of Chinese sesame-peanut candies. And you know what? They were friggin' awesome.

Note to self: no more shopping at the Chinese store during lunchtime, especially while cleansing, unless I've eaten first.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Cleanse Day 3: Perception Shifts

Once you've stopped blasting at your senses with sugary and salty foods, the senses have room to heighten, allowing you to open up and perceive greater subtlety. Today, bananas taste like floral, sweet velvet. Chickpeas are dense little nuggets of nutty nutrition. Cauliflower is all texture, an architecture of stems and branches yielding to teeth and bursting fragrant water, spiced from simmering with Indian herbs.

I remained fairly tense all morning, until the afternoon rainstorm washed me out, leaving calm, clarity, contentment (and apparently alliteration). I drove home with the radio off, letting the symphony of sprinkling and pattering rain fill my ears and trickle down my spine, relishing the fierce lightshow and thunderclaps.

On a more mundane level, I've been craving salt.

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

About Cleansing (for Ann)

Most people who cleanse do so in the spring, which is the ideal time to slough off excesses after eating, eating, eating, and hibernating during the winter. I mean, that's what winter is for, but then we need to adjust for a new phase of the year. A few people also cleanse in late summer, when there's an abundance of fresh veggies.

How do you decide what to eat on a cleanse? That's a toughie. There are ten thousand ways to cleanse. In a warm climate--Hawaii, California, Arizona--some people elect to do all juices, nothing but juice, juice, and juice. This is only good for certain people (fiery constitutions) in certain climates (Alaska and New England need not apply). Some people eat only raw foods for a few days. Macrobiotics eat only brown rice. A yogini friend eats a rice-and-lentils combo for cleansing (only that).

I did my first cleanse 2 springs ago under the direction of an acupuncturist. It was a classic model. Two days of nothing but fruits and veggies (and herbs, olive oil, and herbal teas), then adding back in selected grains (ones that do not form much mucus in the colon), and finally integrating protein--at different meals than the grains. It was a good cleanse, but I hated the recipes in the cleanse book, which were all quasi-Japanese flavored: lemon and soy, and lemon. (This is partly because lemon is very cleansing.) I was pretty angsty the first few days until I started modifying familiar recipes to suit the cleanse.

Oh yeah, and daikon? Tastes like rot. It's very cleansing and I was game...until I tasted it.

Last year, prepping for my wedding, I only got in only a day of cleanse. But I did get a very helpful eBook from a health coach. It took a more reasonable approach to cleansing, and suggested all manner of cleanses, from just giving up caffeine or sugar or processed food, to eating soup one meal a day, to a fuller cleanse like I'd done before. This eBook was willing the meet the cleanser where she is. (If anyone wants a copy, I'll tell you how to get it.)

This year I went back to the basic cleanse model from the first year and put my own twists on it. I chose my soup recipes from the Chopra Center Cookbook, which is wonderfully Indian flavored. Because my digestion is not the strongest (Spleen dampness and deficiency, as we say in the biz), I elected to keep jasmine tea on the cleanse because it tonifies the Spleen, and to eat almost entirely cooked foods. I'm eating barley, a very cleansing grain for the Liver, rather than doing pure fruits and veggies for the first 2 days. I'm eating very little raw food because it's also harder to digest.

The most important aspect of cleansing is probably setting your intentions for the cleanse--identifying your reasons for doing it. Sets the whole thing in a good frame.

Because cleansing is only for a short period, and because you bring certain intentions to it, it does not feel like a Diet. It's a way of taking care of yourself, not of beating yourself up.

Bonus cleanse tip: Avocadoes are very filling.

Cleanse Day 2

Cleansing is an interesting experience. I've been feeling spacey, yes, and also a little more...open? Unshielded? This is an interesting experience at work. A lot of cleansing is just letting the experience happen. You have no idea how much we stuff down with food until you stop doing it for a few days.

A lot of anger has been rising to the surface, which is very good; but it's been sitting there, clinging to the surface--which is bad. Tonight's yoga class mellowed out the anger and made the rough edges round (rather literally in the case of my shoulder sockets). My yoga teacher said I was surrounded by pools of golden light during meditation. She made it sound like quite the laser light show. Very cool.

I slept like the dead last night. I can tell tonight will be similar.

People are supposed to poop a lot during cleansing. I've been pooping no more than usual. But lordy, the Number 1! I guess I was retaining water. Or I'm just drinking a lot more. Or some of both.

Here's what I actually ate today, if y'all are curious:

7:50 AM. "Country potatoes", which are cubed potatoes baked with sliced red bell pepper, leeks, olive oil, dill, cumin, salt & pepper. Half a glass of water. Supplements: black currant oil and triphala.
8:15 AM. Jasmine tea in car. Tastes like liquid amber.
10 AM. Honeybush tea.
10:45 AM. Juice, lots of edamame.
11:30 AM. Stir-fry veggies, jasmine tea.
12:45 PM. Vegetable-barley soup. (VERY grounding and stabilizing. Made my nose run, too!)
4 PM. Fruit salad (banana, apple, blueberries with a squeeze of lime juice and a sprinkle of cinnamon); water. (getting tired and craving chocolate!)
7:20 PM. My yoga teacher happened to have a pot of herbal liver cleanse tea on the stove, and she kindly gave me a glass. Such a great tea.
8 PM. Dinner at last! I was so spacey I could barely function. Spinach and avocado salad with cider vinegar and olive oil for dressing; lemon water; edamame.
8:30 PM. More honeybush tea.

Monday, May 14, 2007

Cleanse Day 1

The rules of the cleanse

  • Fats: olive oil, coconot oil, ghee
  • Drinks: water (with lime, etc), jasmine tea, herbal teas, some juices
  • Food:
    Days 1-2--Any fruits and veggies (Including nightshades, ha!), barley
    Days 3-4--Add in quinoa, rice
    Day 5-?--Add in tofu, tempeh
  • Spices: unlimited

The goals for the cleanse

  • REST digestion, mind, Spleen, body
  • GETTING RID of whatever I don't need that I may be holding onto---emotions, thoughts, fat, food addictions, anger, frustration, waste in colon (Cleansing works on all levels if you so invite it)
  • DE-GUNK! feeling a little toxic lately

I geared this cleanse toward supporting digestion, by including jasmine tea (not standard cleanse fare, being caffeinated) and consuming mostly cooked foods. Most cleanses emphasize raw foods, but my poor little Spleen meridian can't handle such things. I'm letting myself eat potatoes. I like them.

Selected notes from the day. I was very grouchy. Did not help that work was ridiculous the first day of cleansing. At home, I cheated and ate a sliver of brownie, so rich, so good. Felt more human after doing a little yoga after work.

Went to natural foods store for cleanse supplement and also water-based nail polish. Now my toes sparkle with "Goddess", a lovely deep mauve. Very spacey while there, typical for cleansing. Bought a nice juice blend, drank it in the car, felt more alert.

Honeybush tea is a nice cure for the sweet tooth.

Around 4 PM someone else microwaved meat at work. I smelled meat. Instant saliva. Jealous.

Noticing that food is EVERYWHERE. Turn on an hour of TV. No one on TV craps but everyone eats, all the time, constantly.

Wednesday, May 02, 2007

The Tupperware Song

The melody is still a little rough, but the lyrics go something like:

Tupperware here, Tupperware there
Tupperware, Tupperware everywhere
Gets my lunch where it needs to go
But I gotta wash it, woe woe woe

The darkness of the last line ("woe woe woe", reminiscent of Greek or Shakespearean tragedy) belies the songs's ditty-like perky, upbeat tune.