Monday, July 28, 2008

From Robin to "Rawbin"

I hesitantly sent Philip, from LovingRaw, a page about me with some before and after photos. Later, feeling bold, I posted some more photos on a Raw-Fu before and after group:

I'm 5'5" tall and of a small/medium skeletal frame. According to doctors I should weigh between 120-130 pounds. My top weight was 210 (before I stopped looking at the scale) and I'm currently at 156.

I've shed 20 pounds by cutting out meat, dairy, and cooked grains. I shed another 30 by adding in raw fruits, raw vegetables, raw nuts and raw seeds. A total of 50 pounds eliminated and not a single stomach ache on my 100% raw days.
My red holiday sweater, size XXL.
I thought it was flattering.
Proof that vertical stripes aren't always slimming!
This was my glamorous shirt. 
I thought it hid my curves!
The same sunglasses,
 but they fit my face differently.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Spirited and Blissful Adventure

This is part two of my blog about a raw food meetup weekend. To see the first part, go to Mixing Business With Pleasure.

So, after a wrong turn, a tour of the Pentagon parking lot, and a little flirting with the Pentagon Policemen, @RawTN(Joanna) I and were pretty late arriving at Natural Zing's Spirit Bliss Farm. We recognized our twitter friend @blaqberry right away and let me tell you, she is even prettier in real life. She's just so graceful and sweet! Her husband, AlienImplant, is playful and enthusiastic. I immediately felt like I had known this couple for ages!

He spoke enthusiastically about his experiences 
with sprouting and it's many health benefits.

He had a generous supply of helpful tools from sprout bags and chart wheels showing sprouting times for various seeds, peas and beans, to more elaborate giant sprouting machines. There were juicy sprouts available to sample in bowls everywhere!   

Jeff made some of his amazing pies to share. 

My friend Stacy is just discovering raw foods and she showed up to see what it was all about. She brought some frozen strawberries that she had picked herself. I had a fresh container of my date caramel. Blaq Berry wasn't sure what to bring, so at my request she arrived with baby carrots for dipping with my caramel and she brought a bowl of cashew sweet cream for the strawberries. Joanna supplied us with her onion bread and a really flavorful raw nuts and dried fruit mix. Later Laura Fox drove up from Richmond and I had the pleasure of meeting with her again. 

I found big bowls full of Kale Chips... My Favorite!

While we all talked and mingled, 

children were running and playing, but weren't under foot. 

We saw people gathering berries,

 playing drums, 

...and being silly outside (comparing muscles)! 

Jeff and Helen, always the perfect hosts, 

appeared here and there,

answering questions and filling Natural Zing orders.

Finally, we made our first Raw-Fu Divas picture:

Sadly, we all eventually had to leave. BlaqBerry offered us a home made chocolate truffle she had stashed in her car. Really yummy. It seemed similar to the brownies I'm always making for me and my family. It started off from Sunny Raw

Kitchen's Whipped Cream Frosting and Rawdorable's Million Dollar Brownies which we modified to fit our tastes and our mini food processor. We make small batches because it's fast and easy. 

One of our favorite ways to prepare chocolate treasts is something I've been calling...

gRAWssHopper Pie:

"Green Cream Filling"

1/2 cup cashews 

(soaked in water for at least 4 hours)

1/2 cup coconut milk 

(blend 2 cups water to 1 cup shredded coconut until frothy. Pour through nutmilk bag. Use 1/2 cup for cream filling, save the rest to make ice cream-yay!)

2 TB raw cocoa butter

2 TB agave nectar

1/2 tsp vanilla extract

1 TB wheatgrass powder (for color and nutrition)

1/4 tsp peppermint extract (covers the wheatgrass flavor)

1/4 tsp celtic sea salt (has more minerals than table salt- healthier for you)

2 tsp emulsifier/binder like *psyllium or lecithin 

Both work well to help prevent separation but I prefer psyllium because it's good for the heart and I avoid Lecithin because it's soy based and some contain GMOs)

Blend everything except emulsifier in high speed blender until creamy (it will heat up if you're not careful). Add the emulsifier last, blending well. Chill in fridge while making crust.


1/2 cup raw almonds 

1/2 cup raw walnuts

3 TB raw cacao powder (cacao chips ground in coffee grinder or cocoa/carob powder works, too)

1/4 tsp of sea salt

6 large dates, soaked briefly (like 20 minutes)

1/2 TB raw cocoa butter (softened)

1/2 tsp vanilla extract (not raw, but tasty)

Grind first 4 (dry) ingredients first until you have a fine powder

Add last 3 (wet) ingredients and blend until you have a dough ball. 

Roll this into a long log and divide into 12 equal sized balls. These are good plain, or rolled in shredded coconut, or continuing on, tuck these into a mini muffin pan like mini pie crusts. 

Spoon in a big spoonful of green filling into each pastry. Place in freezer. To remove from pan, take out of freezer for about 2 minutes. Loosen sides with butter knife and pop out. Store in an airtight container in freezer for easy snacking.


Saturday, July 19, 2008

Mixing Business With Pleasure

Using Twitter, Joanna and I kept tabs on each other as we worked our way towards Norfolk, Virginia. She left Tennessee to pick up her son from camp in North Carolina. She had a dehydrator full of onion bread in the trunk! 

I drove down from Maryland stopping at each and every West Marine along the way. I'd go in to the store, ask to see the Maryland Cruising Guide and the Virginia Cruising Guide, ask them to hang our poster in the break room, straighten the shelf, ask for the manager's name and move on. 

By 7 PM the West Marines were closed(yay!) so I headed over to a Richmond Raw Food Potluck. I was excited because I was going to meet Laura Fox from Sedona Talk Radio. Laura is great! I've been listening to her raw foodist podcast interviews and have used them as helpful motivation. (If you want to listen to other inspiring podcasts, you should really check out my twitter friend Revvell's podcast interviews. She's been making some serious raw food connections.)
There was an amazingly wonderful squash soup that Laura whipped up just as I arrived. There had been a platter full of collardgreen veggie wraps but only one left when I got there. Laura cut hers in half and shared it with me. Other treats there were a peach cobbler that really tasted baked, and two flavors of ice cream. I certainly didn't starve. I brought my raw date caramel(dates, lemon, vanilla) and we dipped dried yacon pieces in it. 

I was worried that I'd be keeping Joanna waiting so I took off for Norfolk. We laughed as we both pulled into the hotel parking lot at the exact same time! Joanna finished drying her onion bread overnight and I brought Joanna my mini gRAWsshopper pie.

It was her son's first trip to the Atlantic ocean, so we headed straight to the beach in the morning. 
I got some great pictures of them playing and enjoying the fresh sea air.
We dug holes in the sand and we even had a triathlon pass right by us. 
Here is FruitFreek running in the lead! 
Joanna was truly a diva with her lacy skirt and her long flowing hair!
Rawbin and RawTN Diva Chicks!
She requested no swimsuit pictures, but I thought this one would be okay.

I left the two of them playing at the beach while I stopped by 3 more West Marines and then Joanna followed me back to Maryland (see her slide show)(and her other slide show) to a Spirited and Blissful Adventure. We munched on fresh kale and fruit along the way. Got lost at the pentagon and proceeded to meet up with BlaqBerry and her Hubs, AlienImplant.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Road Tweeps with Twitter Peeps!

When we drove up to California University for my daughter's student orientation we arrived late at night. We stayed overnight at WendiDee's house. It was a really cool house with lots of old stained glass windows. Her family, although a little weirded out at having a couple of strangers at the door, welcomed us into their home graciously. Wendi just explained to them that I was part of a Faerie Festival, like that explains everything, haha! 

In the morning Wendi warmed up the sauna, provided gentle relaxing music, with scented oils and lighted candles. It was almost like a dream. Later, we all met again in the kitchen where Wendi showed her skills at removing all the meat from green coconuts all in one piece! We munched on watermelon while she whipped up two dreamy smoothies: a vanilla/hazelnut custard flavor and a carob/banana flavor. 

I wished we had more time to visit, I wanted to hear Wendi's hubs play the piano(jazz, I think). Her daughter was working on a purple/gray painting that remarkably matched the evening scene we saw . The painting you see behind us in the picture is also hers. We said our thankyous and goodbyes, leaving with a chunk of mint from Wendi's driveway. 

The college orientation staff provided "food", none of which I could eat, so I was glad I had an ample supply of produce to munch on. Also, I crumpled mint leaves into my water bottle and was satisfied. We shopped around a bit, a college t-shirt and skullcandy headphones for Ivy (both black of course). We stayed in the college dorm that night. The next day we attended a few more seminars before heading home.