A look back at 2015…..

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2015 was amazing.  Hands down, one of my best years.  During the last couple weeks of December I reflected a bit on the year.  What made this year so amazing, compared to previous years?  Well, a few years ago, I really began living intentionally.  I started doing a lot of personal development work, I set goals, I decided what I wanted my life to look like and I focused my attention and energy on those visions.  And then everything fell apart.  Let’s just say it didn’t look like I had envisioned.  In fact, it was almost the opposite.  I did no travel, my business was not generating money, which led to lots of debt and living with my parents.  I was dating someone who was, let’s just say, not very nice to me.  The list seemed to keep going.  And yet, as I look back on this time in my life, I realize that it was exactly what I needed to be where I am now.  I was asking for my life to look completely different.  In order for that to happen, the old structures had to crumple so something new could show up.  I’m not suggesting that you destroy everything in your current life so that something new can show up.  What I am saying, is to be patient with yourself.  When you decide to create something new in your life, there are reasons it doesn’t happen over night.  Don’t be discouraged… keep creating.

Here is 2015 in a nut shell….

In January I started my year in San Francisco with a good friend.  We spent a long weekend hanging out, eating amazing food, shopping, etc.  But what I took away from this trip was the kindness, generosity and patience of my friend.  I realized the kind of person I wanted spend my time with and realized it was time to do an inventory of the people I was hanging around with…. san fran 2 A couple weeks later I was off to Sayulita, Mexico on a week long yoga retreat.

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Mexico7I never wrote about that trip.  It was a trip for me, to let old things go, to set intentions for the new year and for my life.  I took the trip thinking I would have time to reflect, sit alone in meditation, spend time journaling, etc.  That didn’t happen.  I was never alone, in fact, quite the opposite.  But things don’t always happen as you expect they will, but they do happen exactly as they should.  This trip sparked two of the greatest, yet hardest pieces of my year… loosing people.  No one died.  Thankfully.  First, a friendship ended.  You don’t always understand it at first, I usually take things that like very hard, trying to understand, re-living conversations, questioning myself, wondering if I was a good enough friend, etc, etc. etc.  It wasn’t until an entire year went by with a heavy heart that I realized the friend I lost, was not my true friend in the first place.  When you’re in the company of true friendship and love, you don’t question yourself, you don’t feel judged, you don’t wonder if you are enough.  I have true friends, I know what it feels like.  I didn’t end the friendship, but I found it to be interesting considering my realization just a few weeks earlier. 

Secondly, that trip sparked an intervention of sorts.  I realized the extreme severity of an addiction in someone I loved and I confronted them.  I felt like I had two options, let them kill themselves, or intervene and risk the possible backlash.  I realized that a feud might breakout or I might be attacked back as is common with interventions.  I made the choice to step in and try to save the life of someone I loved.  Both happened.  That person got help, and to this day, I somehow am also the bad guy.  I had to walk away from this relationship but it was worth it.  I hope someone would do the same for me.  

Sigh…

That trip was followed by yet another trip!  In February I went to New Orleans for Mardi Gras with my friend.  I had so much fun!  We went to parades, ate amazing food, and saw the French Quarter.Pic1 Pic2 Pic3 pic4

March was very significant.  I sold my house, it was bittersweet.  I was emotionally attached to say the least.  It was my first house, I had put a lot of love into it and it came time to say goodbye.  The sale of my house also led to being completely debt free, for the first time in a long time.  Another weight off the shoulders!

In March, my boyfriend and I started dating after being friends for over a year.  I can say, I couldn’t ask for a better partner.  He is kind, generous, patient, successful, hilarious, etc., etc.  We took our first of many trips.  We went to Vail, CO and had a blast!

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 In June, we took out first out of country trip together to Dominican Republic (Original Post).

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In July, I officially moved out of my apartment and into my boyfriends house.

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We also took a camping trip… it was really more of a “glamping” trip :)  Seriously, I’m not a camper, I have probably gone a handful of times in my life.  So….I might of overpacked.  We had enough food to feed a family of 6 for a week or so, we were gone for 2 nights :)

Processed with VSCOcam with m5 presetIMG_3631 IMG_3621 IMG_3641In August, we flew to England to attend my childhood best friends wedding.  It was amazing!! (Original Post)

All dressed up for the wedding

All dressed up for the wedding

 We spent the summer weekends trail running and hiking outside with our dogs!  We even made our way down to Manitou Springs, CO to hike the incline.

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Also, in August my brother proposed to his girlfriend!!!!  So excited to have her in our family!

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In September, we flew to Oklahoma and I met my boyfriend’s family for the first time.  We went to my first OU football game… well, actually my first college football game :)

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In October, my mom and I threw an engagement party for my brother and his future wife! 

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IMG_5316 IMG_5330 IMG_5328 IMG_5339In November, my boyfriend and I flew to Las Vegas for the weekend.  We ate in some amazing restaurants, I played Craps for the first time (and won!), we went to see “O” at the Bellagio… it was a blast!

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December is coming to an end as I write this, we spent Christmas eve with my family and then flew to Oklahoma on Christmas day to visit my boyfriends family as well.  On Sunday evening his parents drove us to the airport, we had been on the outskirts of winter storm Goliath and had our fingers crossed that we would have a safe and uneventful flight home.  That didn’t happen.  Our flight was cancelled.  Flat out cancelled.  The next flight to Denver they could get us on was Wednesday evening.  So we had a couple choices… we could wait until Wednesday and hope to catch a flight then… or we could drive home.  Since we are spending NYE in Iowa with my brother’s fiancés family, staying until Wednesday wasn’t really an option.  Plus, our dogs were waiting out arrival :)  We rented a car and were on the road within the hour.  It was stressful to say the least… We were driving through an ice storm trying to get to Witchita to get a room for the night.  I had to close my eyes most of the way I was so nervous!  But we made it and had a warm bed to sleep in.  The next morning we got up and finished the drive.  We missed work, spent hours trying to call United for a refund, we were tired, we missed our beds… but through all that, we laughed… a lot!  I remember sitting there in the rental car, staring out the window thinking how grateful I am.  The year was filled with drama, with loss, with stress from work and moving, etc, etc, but we still laughed.  I thought a lot about the first part of my year, about the people I lost, but more importantly was the people I gained and the amazing people that were already in my life.  I thought about how I set the intention to let go of the people that were no longer in alignment with who I wanted to be, and to bring in people who were.  It didn’t all happen gracefully, but it happened.  Bringing awareness to this piece of my life was huge. 

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Thug Tacos

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I recently made the choice not to eat meat anymore.  I haven’t gone completely vegan.  I’m testing the waters.  It’s not that easy.  It’s also not that hard.  It’s more of a commitment.  Plus, I don’t like to jump into labels and start telling everyone I’m a Vegan.   What if one day I decide to eat a piece of cheese at a party in front of someone I’ve ranted to about Veganism.  Then I just look like an asshole.  But this blog isn’t about my views on eating animal products.  It’s about tacos.

My vegan cookbook Google search led me to “Thug Kitchen”.  I was sold right away.  Not for the recipes, I currently know nothing about vegan cooking, but for the book’s vulgar language and attitude.  It makes me laugh.  On my first flip through the book I decided to make something that was semi-familiar.  Tacos.  I have made tacos.  I have never made tofu.  I have never bought tofu.  That sounds hard right now.  I’m tired.   

Beer Lime Cauliflower Tacos with Cilantro Coleslaw

I have made them 5 times.  They are really good.  Well, my version of them is really good.  Each time I have made them a little differently, mostly depending on what ingredients I have in my house.

On a quick side note, I overthink everything.  There are so few recipes on my blog so far because I have felt like every single recipe has to be completely authentic to me.  It has to be something I dreamed up and created personally and then shared with the world.  That would be awesome… if that was my only job, or if that was my greatest passion.  But let’s be real.  It’s not.  So, I was thinking about sharing my version of Thug Kitchen’s taco recipe, when I decided that since it didn’t start out as mine, I shouldn’t do that.  Then I realized that was complete bullshit.

A recipe is so many things.  It’s art.  It’s a personal creation.  It’s a guideline.  You can follow it exactly.  You can use it for inspiration.  You can take bits and pieces from one to create something new.  It’s an outlet. 

I had an art teacher once who encouraged me to find a piece of someone’s art I liked and try to replicate it; in the process, creating something completely unique and authentic.  I was surprised to be honest.

The same applies to life.  Everything is just a guideline; an inspiration to create your own thing.  For you to then, inspire others with.  Give credit to your inspiration, this isn’t a competition.

(Unless you are taking something word for word from someone, attaching your name to it and trying to make money from it… don’t do that, that’s illegal!)

Vegan Spicy Roasted Cauilflower Tacos
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Prep Time
20 min
Cook Time
30 min
Total Time
50 min
Prep Time
20 min
Cook Time
30 min
Total Time
50 min
Ingredients
  1. 1 head - cauliflower
  2. 1 cup - vegetable broth
  3. 1 1/2 teaspoon - Braggs amino acids (or soy sauce)
  4. 3 tablespoons - hot sauce (your fav)
  5. 3 cloves - garlic (roughly chopped)
  6. 1 1/2 teaspoons - chili powder
  7. 1 teaspoon - smoked paprika
  8. 1/4 teaspoon - ground cumin
  9. 1/4 teaspoon - garlic powder
  10. Salt to taste
  11. 1 tablespoon - olive oil
  12. 1/2 - yellow onion (chopped)
  13. 1 cup - cherry tomatoes (halved)
  14. 6 - corn tortillas
  15. 1 - avocado (sliced)
  16. Cilantro
Instructions
  1. Preheat your oven to 400 degrees
  2. In a saucepan, heat vegetable broth, amino acids, hot sauce, and garlic over medium heat
  3. Chop the cauliflower head into small pieces, add to saucepan and cover
  4. Allow to simmer for about 10 minutes, stirring regularly
  5. Drain cauliflower
  6. Toss spices, olive oil, onion, tomatoes, and cauliflower in a large bowl until completely coated
  7. Pour mixture onto a cookie sheet and place in the oven for 20 minutes
  8. On a separate cookie sheet, place 6 corn tortillas evenly, place in oven for 5 minutes to get warm
  9. Place roasted mixture on tortillas
  10. Add avocado, cilantro and salsa
Notes
  1. Add shredded cheese to the corn tortillas before placing them in the oven for extra deliciousness (this makes them not vegan!)
Penrose Place http://www.rebeccaschonebaum.com/

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3 Steps to End Self-Judgment + Pants That Make You Happy

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Man, it’s been a while since I have posted anything.  I know you have been on the edge of your seat ;)   I have been busy with another project and I have neglected you.  Forgive me.

This past weekend I met my mom at the mall.  Not to shop, but to walk.  You know, like a mall walker?!  Yes, that is who I have become.  Judge me if you want.  Anyway, as I passed Anthropologie, the signature “Volcano” scent filled my nostrils and lightly guided me inside the store… just to look.  I have this physical reaction when I walk into that store.  It’s almost like gentle tornado of joy wraps itself around my body and I am just content with the world.  Seriously.  So, I piled my arms with clothes and headed to those perfectly lit dressing rooms.  (Damn those dressing rooms!)  It was one of those shopping days where everything you try on looks amazing on you.  I might as well have been an Anthropologie model.  (Ok, that’s extreme.)  With the season for giving just around the corner, I wondered how I could justify spending money on myself, when in fact, I “should” be spending money on my loved ones. 

Every time I hear myself say that word I cringe.  “Should!”  Only when I say it though.  When other people tell me I “should” do something, I just don’t do it.  But when I say it, I know that I have a point of view that is keeping me in judgment of me.  Let me explain.  There is no greater prison than being in constant judgment of yourself.  (Except maybe being in actual prison)  Why?  Because no matter what you accomplish, no matter how amazing you are, no matter how beautiful, successful, kind or generous you are… it’s never good enough.  Ever.  When you are in judgment of yourself, you can never get to a place where you find peacefulness.

 Here are 3 (sort of) easy ways to get out of self-judgment:

1.  Stop “shoulding” all over yourself.

Start to notice what thoughts you have and/or what words you use as you go into self-judgment.  Mine is “should”.  I should have been more productive this weekend.  I should not have eaten that delicious cookie.  I should not have said that.  I should not buy this beautiful dress for myself.  I should have acted differently. 

Shoulding takes the joy out of life.  And the first step is to simply acknowledge the self-judgment.  Once you have an awareness of it you can choose to change it.   

2.  Ask yourself, “is my point of view really mine?”

One of the most valuable tools I learned years ago was to notice how my body reacts to certain things.  Your body is like your own built in guidance system, if you pay attention, it will guide you to make the choices that are best for you.  Just because you have a belief or point of view about something doesn’t mean it is true for you.  In fact, majority of the problems and/or limitations we have in life are created by points of view that might not even be our own.  We pick these up from our parents, teachers, peers, the news, and society.  Once those points of view are acknowledged they can be changed.  And once they are changed, your realty changes as well.   

Here is how you can tell what is yours and what isn’t.  Follow the light.  The lightness I feel as I am frolicking around the dressing room in this dress, feeling joyful… that is it.  When you have that feeling, that is your inner guidance giving you the thumbs up.  The heaviness felt when I come to the conclusion that I’m not supposed to buy myself presents… that’s the thumbs down, not mine point of view. 

3.  Choice.

Ok, so you become aware of your limiting self-judgment and you have recognized that maybe there is a different possibility and possibly even realized that you have been living someone else’s reality… then what?  You choose something different.  I do this by asking myself, “what else is possible?”  When you ask this simple question you are asking new possibilities to present themselves to you.  Be careful though.  It’s really powerful.  The Universe is now in motion, re-arranging itself, to present you with new possibilities.  Don’t F this up. 

When I presented these steps to you, I told you that they were “sort of” easy.  What I have found is that most people enjoy their misery.  They enjoy being a victim and living their poor, old, pitiful story.  I know from experience.  You choose your life.  You can choose to look at these steps as easy or hard.  I would recommend easy.

These tools are not only for shopping my love, they are for everything!  But I know you are dying to know what happened with this dress I fell in love with… well, I will tell you.  As I practically danced out of the dressing room to show my mom this dress, she also feel in love with it!  She said, “OMG!  You have to have that dress!  I will buy it for you as a Christmas gift.”  Thanks Mom!  Thanks Universe!

Since the beautiful dress is all wrapped up, with bows and glitter under the Christmas tree waiting for me surprisingly open it in awe on Christmas morning, I can’t show it to you.  But I will show you another outfit, that I didn’t get from Anthropologie, or on this described day.

These pants are freaking SPANX.  Freaking amazing. They make me happy.  Do things that make you happy, wear things that make you happy, spend time with people that make you happy.

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SHOP THIS LOOK

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Leggings, SPANX

Heels, Sam Eldeman Black Pumps (Similar Version)

Shirt, Carlson Sheer Black Button-up (Similar Version)

Jacket, Black Faux Leather from Inspyre in Denver (Similar Version)

Earrings, Dogearred Gold Dipped Moroccan

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Jalapeno Cheddar Burgers + A Lesson From The Couch

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I have become a marathon Netflix watcher, please don’t judge me, I’m already ashamed.  This past Sunday, I discovered Homeland.  Actually, I watched a couple episodes on Friday night and was hooked.  Then, when I woke up Sunday morning with a full day of no plans, I went straight to the couch and stayed there the remainder of the day.  My boyfriend even went and got all my meals and brought them to me on the couch so I didn’t have to stop watching.  He is an enabler.  It was ridiculous.

By the time I peeled my ass off the couch and went to bed, I felt pretty guilty.  I had seriously just wasted an entire day.  I fell asleep planning an extremely productive Monday in hopes that would erase my guilt. 

When I opened my eyes on Monday, I lied in bed, once again, wondering why I was so “all or nothing.”  I go, go, go, until I burn out and need a break.  I was mind fucking myself trying to figure out a way to change this behavior, when it occurred to me…. what’s the big deal?  Why do I need to change this behavior?  I have been told my whole life not to be this way.  The guilt I feel is only from thinking this behavior is wrong.  From believing what other people have said, that’s it’s not healthy to live like that.  But what if that’s not true? 

There is no right or wrong way to be.  I happen to operate from an “all or nothing” place.  Sunday was my nothing.  Monday thru Saturday was my all.  It works from me. 

If you ever get caught up in this cycle, here are a few ways to stop:

1.  I’m not saying don’t take advice, but I am suggesting you can save yourself a lot of guilt and self destruction by questioning the points of view that you think are so set in stone.  One persons “balance”  is another persons disaster.

2.  Do what works for you.  Period.

3.  Get quiet and ask yourself, “is this even mine?”  A lot of the beliefs that are etched into our brains are not even ours.  We have inherited them from our family, friends, teachers and culture.

It makes for a much happier existence.

Oh Monday.  With 40 thousand things to do, dinner  had to be quick and healthy.  I made these amazing Jalapeno Cheddar Burgers.  They were ridiculously easy and super delicious.  I topped them with avocado and served them with sweet potato fries.  

Jalapeno Cheddar Burgers
Serves 2
Grass-Fed Local Ground Beef, Jalapenos and aged cheddar burgers.
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Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
10 min
Total Time
15 min
Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
10 min
Total Time
15 min
Ingredients
  1. 1 lb - Grass fed ground beef
  2. 1 - Fresh jalapeno, chopped
  3. 1/2 Cup - Kerrygold aged cheddar cheese, shredded
  4. 1/2 Teaspoon - Cumin
  5. 1/2 Teaspoon - Paprika
  6. 1/2 Teaspoon - Onion Powder
  7. 1/2 Teaspoon - Garlic Powder
  8. Salt and Pepper to taste
Instructions
  1. Fire up your grill to high
  2. In a large bowl, mix all your ingredients together. (I just use my hands)
  3. After ingredients are combined, use your hands to make burger patties
  4. Place on grill
  5. Cook on each side for 5-6 minutes
Penrose Place http://www.rebeccaschonebaum.com/

Burger

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Heels & Hoodies

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My mom and I went shopping a couple years ago to find an outfit for a White Party I was attending.  I seriously had zero white outfits in my closet at that point.  We scoured the mall, finding very little white, it was fall and it was beginning to look like I was screwed.  We did find this one dress…. looking at it on the hanger, I wasn’t sold.  I can usually tell if something will look good just by looking at it on the hanger.  However, in dire need of a white dress I decided to take it back to the dressing room.  I put the dress on and walked out for my mom to see.  The moment she saw me, she covered her mouth in a failed attempt to cover up her laughter.  Within seconds, she announced “YOU LOOK LIKE A FRAUD” and continued laughing hysterically at me in my little white dress.  She even took a picture to continue her fun and my humiliation. 

Unfortunately, that little gem got lost in the transition to a new phone and is gone forever.  But my mom was right.  I looked like a fraud.  This was a sweet, lacey, high-necked, poufy dress.  It was beautiful and I know a bunch of people it would look great on….  Me, not so much.  It really did look like I was trying to be someone I was not.  This dress did not match my personality.  It also didn’t do anything for my figure.

Anyway, you know how easy it is to compare yourself to other people’s style and bodies?  Really freaking easy.  I read a lot of style blogs and sometimes I find myself feeling down after I look at them… having a little pity party because I wish I had cooler clothes, curlier hair, better this, that or whatever.  It’s bullshit. 

Style is Personal and Comparison Kills Creativity

Some people make style look super easy… it’s not always that way for me.  You should see my closet and bed room after I’m looking for something to wear.  It looks like I took everything off the hanger and threw it somewhere in my room… because that is exactly what I did :)

Instead of comparing yourself to other people’s style, create your own.  Use people for inspiration and create a style that works for you.

Pic1  Pic2 Pic4 Pic5 SHOP THIS LOOK

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First Outfit

Jeans, Rag & Bone  

Sweatshirt, Maison Scotch (Similar Version)

Heels, Sam Eldeman Leopard Print

Earrings, Kate Spade Studs (Similar Version)

Second Outfit

Jeans, Flying Monkey Distressed (Similar Version)

Hoodie, ppla clothing (Similar Version)

Heels, Sam Eldeman Leopard Print

Bag, Poverty Flats (Similar Version)

 

 

 

    

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Dominican Republic

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I’m pretty sure I got the “daughter of the year” award when I booked a trip to the Dominican Republic leaving on the weekend of my mom’s birthday and father’s day.  :-|

It was an interesting trip.  I have traveled a lot, yet I have never done an all-inclusive resort vacation.  (Except in Mexico, which doesn’t count)  It was my boyfriend and I’s first trip together and we both decided that we just wanted to sit on the beach for a week and do absolutely nothing but eat, drink and read.  Hearing great things about the DR, we found a good deal and we were on our way.   

Probably like most all-inclusive hotels, there is buffet and several food places open 24 hours.  You can feed your face as much as you would like around the clock.  Then, you have your nicer restaurants that have certain hours, at this particular resort, reservations were needed to get in.  It was suggested that we make reservations for the entire week on the day we arrived because they fill up fast.  So, that is what we did.

On the first night we arrived promptly for our reservation.  We were un-welcomingly greeted by the hostess.  She looked us up and down before asking us to leave.  Shocked, I looked at my boyfriend completely confused.  Apparently, there is a dress code that we were meeting.  Let me explain, we were not dressed in bathing suits and cut-offs.  We had gone back to the room, bathed ourselves and got dressed up.  I was wearing a dress with heels and my boyfriend wore pants, a long sleeve collared shirt and leather flip flops.  With broken English and a scowl, she told us that we had to be in closed toed shoes and asked us again to leave.  She told us that all of 15 restaurants on the property required this.  I brought a lot of things for 90 degree tropical weather… closed toed shoes was not one them.  Tired and starving, I did my best to understand that maybe this was a cultural thing I just didn’t know about.  So, we set out on the beach, looking for a place that would accept us, spending over $100 for our first meal at our all-inclusive hotel.

The next morning, we checked out the buffet.  Let me start by saying that I am NOT a buffet person.  I find them to be disgusting, germ infested, fly havens.  However, as my only option for breakfast I made do, plus I started off with the unlimited mimosa bar… that helped.  This buffet had just about everything a girl could possibly want… except this girl,  I wanted nothing.  Part of why I love to travel is the food.  I love experiencing the food of different cultures.  I love finding little authentic gems with delicious food prepared by locals.  The food at this buffet was not Dominican food… it was wannabe American food.  For example, there was fish… but in the form of fish sticks.  There was a salad bar looking thing that was labeled “salad bar” but was filled with slices of cheese and objects I’m assuming were supposed to be vegetables.  There was a tub of what looked like bright pink mayonnaise, that was labeled “pink sauce”, maybe that was supposed to be salad dressing?  Desperate to get away from these buffets and into the restaurants, we purchased some close toed shoes for me at gift shop.  The next night we went to our reservation at a different restaurant, only to find about 90% of the people in open-toed shoes…..um… what?

This food experience was only part of the weird service we experienced at this resort.  Don’t get me wrong, we did have fun.  It just took a few days to get used to the overly rude staff and the rules.  There were A LOT of rules.  Especially for a relaxing vacation.

So, aside from eating, we did fulfill the rest of our goal of sitting on the beach drinking and reading.  Until, I got a sun rash over my entire body and had to cover my body in cortisone cream and stay in the shade. 

So, if this vacation was such an awful experience, why am I even writing about it?  Because yes, it was really easy to complain about the food, the demeanor of the staff, the itchy rash all over my body, etc. etc., but on the second day, I looked up from my bottomless pinna colada out into the ocean and realized there was nothing to complain about.  I was sitting on one of the most beautiful beaches in the world, next to my best friend without a care in the world. (Except skin cancer and starvation)  How could I be upset about anything right now?  Or ever for that matter. 

I was pretty excited that I had found someone I could have fun anywhere with, doing anything… including getting shunned from restaurants.  And, I got a new pair of shoes! 

Over the last three months since we have been back, I have really thought about how much I complain.  Not going to lie, it’s a lot.  And, I spend a good amount of my day listening to other people complain.  It’s almost like it is human nature.  I complain about having too much to do at work, yet I also complain about not having enough to do at work.  I used to complain about the long drive to work, so I moved close.  And now, I complain about the traffic on my 5 min commute to work.  It’s easy to feel grateful as I’m getting buzzed on the beach looking at the ocean, but what about in daily life?  That’s the challenge. 

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Baked Sweet Potato Fries

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 I did something yesterday I am ashamed of….

I was driving to an appointment when someone cut me off.  I was at a 4-way stop going straight.  I was almost though the intersection when the person turning right decided to try and beat me and they completely just cut me off.    I lost my shit. 

The normal me would have slowed down, rolled my eyes and just let him go in front of me.  But not today.  Today I didn’t even think.  I just reacted.  I honked my horn, didn’t slow down, and um… flipped him off :(   

I don’t know what came over me. 

I felt really bad about it the rest of the day.  I was embarrassed that I actually got so mad.  I was ashamed that I had reacted like that.  I thought about it the entire rest of the day.  By the time I got home from work I was exhausted.

As I was falling asleep, I realized that I had to let it go.  I had to forgive myself.  I know very few people (if any) that are the same exact person everyday. Our lives are full of ups and downs.  We can practice our patience and still have a bad day.  And that’s ok.

But it’s draining to let these incidences take over our day.  Holding on to anger, grief, resentment, or embarrassment is not good for you.  It’s not good for anyone. 

You can start letting things go by becoming more aware of what you are holding on to.  You may already know what that is.  If you are not sure, just ask yourself, “What am I holding on to?”  Don’t try to answer it, allow the awareness to present itself when it’s time.  It might come as a phone call from a person who upsets you.  It might be a thought that pops into your head later that day.  Your awareness is subtle, but you can always count on it being there.

On a lighter note… I’m completely obsessed with sweet potatoes.  I make them multiple times a week.  This is my favorite recipe because it is so easy and delicious!

Baked Sweet Potato Fries
Serves 2
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Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
55 min
Total Time
1 hr
Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
55 min
Total Time
1 hr
Ingredients
  1. 2 - Medium Sweet Potatoes, peeled
  2. 2 Tablespoons - Coconut Oil, melted
  3. 1 Teaspoon - Sea Salt
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees
  2. Cut sweet potatoes into 1/2 inch rounds and then again in the opposite direction
  3. Place cut sweet potatoes, melted coconut oil and salt into a large bowl
  4. Mix together until sweet potatoes are completely covered
  5. Spread potatoes onto large cookie sheet
  6. Bake for 45-60 minutes, checking occasionally
Notes
  1. Cook time depends on how crispy you prefer your fries
Penrose Place http://www.rebeccaschonebaum.com/

 Sweet pot fries1

Sweet pot fries2

 Sweet pot fries3

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When You’re Expecting…

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I’m pretty happy about my new habit of attending 6am hot yoga before work.  I hate to say, but it mostly started because my boyfriend decided that he was going to become a runner.  A morning runner.  So while my lazy ass was sleeping in bed with the dogs until the last possible minute I could, he was running a half marathon through the city.   

Inspired, yet not being a morning person, I decided that yoga was my best option for a morning workout… the room is pretty quiet and dark.  The only person talking is usually the yoga teacher, and I could use a little Zen before starting the day.  I particularly love the class on Friday morning.  I like the teacher and his style.  I like to get there a little early to adjust to the heat before we start.  Anyway, this particular Friday went as normal… until it didn’t.  I was 2 minutes into a hour class and I found myself so pissed off I contemplated leaving.  First of all, some chic was substituting for the normal teacher.  She turned the heat down and lights up.  She began our practice backwards… we were doing supine twist and happy baby in the first minute.  I was already thoroughly annoyed when she turned on rock music and proceeded to move us into a core workout.  Um… excuse me, but it’s 6:05am??  Then to make matters worse, at the last minute someone came into class and plopped their mat right next to mine, not that I mind this considering it’s only kind to make room for everyone.  But this particular human smelled as if she hadn’t showered in ages and didn’t believe in deodorant… even the natural kind.    The smell was nauseating, and deep breathing in through the nose is kind of required.  Unless of course you are trying to pass out. 

I always thought I was pretty good at hiding my bitch face, but getting a glimpse of myself in the mirror I realized that is far from the truth.  I should probably get a medal in involuntary eye rolling… 

Actually, I was kind of embarrassed by my reaction, hoping no one had glanced over and saw my sour look, I asked myself why I was so pissed off.  I realized that my expectations of how this morning would go had not been met.  At all.  And I was seemingly unwilling to except that.  I wanted it the way I wanted it, period.  

But what was I missing out on in my unwillingness to step outside those expectations?  

In fact, right in that moment I was in a pose.  I can’t quite remember what pose it was, but what I do remember was being instructed to soften into the pose as it got harder. To take a deep breathe and find room where I thought there was none.  To step to the very edge of my un-comfort and then go further instead of pull back.  The yoga instructor was trying to challenge our expectations.  She wanted to challenge the expectations we have of our bodies and what they are capable of.  She wanted to pull us from our routine practice and encourage us to see possibilities.  She was genius. 

That was one of the best yoga sessions I had had in a while.  Not only because I DID soften into those poses, not only because I DID find room I couldn’t find before, not only because I DID step off the ledge beyond my expectations but because I also realized that those expectations exist not only on my mat and with my body, but everywhere in my life. 

I wondered how many times had I stepped to the very edge of creating something in my life and then backed away from it instead of softening into it.  I remembered that those moments when we get really pissed off or really mad are not moments to ignore.  They are opportunities to explore.  I remembered that expectations can be limiting.  They can also be changed.

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Vanilla Blackberry Almond Chia Pudding

Chia_Featured Image

I am a fierce defender of bees. 

Well, that might be a little overstated… but I am a bee advocate.  I don’t actually do anything official to help them from becoming extinct but if I see a bee in danger, I do my best to inform it’s predator of the importance of keeping them around.  (That is, if it’s a human predator). 

So you can imaging my surprise when I was minding my own business, running off the cupcake I was persuaded to eat earlier that day, when a giant bee attacked my leg.  After cursing loudly and inappropriately, I limped home, eyes swelled with tears.

Holy Crap!  That hurt so bad.  But as with my dreams, I find it interesting and extremely helpful to explore meaning behind experiences like this one.  With ice on my leg, I looked up the spirit animal message from the honey bee.  Almost every time I take the time to notice messages from nature, I am amazed.  It always correlates with something I am exploring in my life at the moment… a little message of inspiration or reassurance I am on the right path.

The bee’s message could also be one of teamwork and community. Are you being called to add your talents to humanity? Have you held back any personal contributions that could make the world better? In these spiritually evolving times, many of us are being called to add our voices to the collective consciousness in order to raise the vibration of the planet. The bee is inviting you.

Also, I made this delicious pudding :)  

Vanilla Blackberry Almond Chia Pudding
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Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
8 hr
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
8 hr
Ingredients
  1. 1 Can - Coconut milk
  2. 1/4 Cup - Chia Seeds
  3. 1 Tbsp - Raw Honey
  4. 1 Tsp - Vanilla
  5. 2 Tbsp - Crushed Almonds (I used a coffee bean grinder to crush whole almonds)
  6. 1/2 Cup - Fresh Blackberries
Instructions
  1. In a large bowl, mix all ingredients.
  2. Pour mixture into small air tight jars (I used small mason jars)
  3. Place in refrigerator overnight
Penrose Place http://www.rebeccaschonebaum.com/

Chia Pudding 2 Chia Pudding 1

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40 Things I Learned From My Parents

40th Display_Featured

 This past Sunday was my parents 40th anniversary.  That’s pretty impressive.  I have never done more that a quick text (if I remember) wishing them a Happy Anniversary.  I always just considered wedding anniversary’s a personal thing celebrated between the two people involved… maybe I’m just a bad daughter… or maybe since I’m not married I haven’t realized how special it really is.  This year, I decided to throw together a last minute dinner to celebrate their special day.    40th_5

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40th_1

We had Baby Back Ribs from Paleomg.com, I had zero idea what I was doing, as I have never made ribs…. or BBQ of any kind, but they turned out pretty good.  We had salad with homemade dressing and sweet potato fries.  Then I made a “Peanutbutter” cream pie, also from Paleomg.com.  (If you haven’t been to this site, you have to check it out!) 

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 I haven’t even been alive for 40 years, and the more I started to think about spending that much time with someone I started to think about what it would take.  And who better to learn from then people with experience… my very own parents.  I don’t think that having a healthy relationship with someone is all about the relationship with your partner, but also about the relationship you have with yourself. 

Here are 40 Things I Learned My Parents:

1. Compassion - Both my parents have always suggested to me to look at each situation through the eyes of the other person.  It is there you can get over yourself and find the compassion for another. 

2.  Ask Questions - Or maybe to question things is a better way to say it.  Just because someone tells you something is true, doesn’t make it true.  I’m not suggesting that my parents taught to me defy authority but they did teach me to think for myself. 

3.  No One Can Make You Feel Anything - Not going to lie, this one always made me want to punch people.  But what a gift this truly is, it has allowed me (for the most part) to take responsibility for my own feelings, as well as, change them and/or reflect on them.

4.  There Are No Accidents - This advice has allowed me to see the magic in the Universe.  To see that everything happens for a reason even if we can’t understand it in the present moment. 

5.  Never Discuss Politics - Great advice.

6.  Never Discuss Religion - Great advice.

7.  Never Discuss Taxes - Great advice.

8.  Say What You Want (Not What You Don’t Want) - You always want to put out into the Universe what you want, not what you don’t want.  This used to just be an annoying thing my parents would say to me as I was going through life.  I would say “Don’t forget to turn off the lights”  And they would respond, “Remember to turn off the lights.”  I would say, “I don’t want it to snow.”  They would say, “I want sunshine”  At the moment I only partially understood the power or significance of this.  But I now realize how powerful it is.  You get what you ask for in life.  However, the Universe has no polarity, which means it’s neither good nor bad if the lights are off.  When you are constantly asking for what you don’t want, that’s what you get.  When you simply shift to saying what you do want, you get more of that. 

9.  You Don’t Know What You Don’t Know - We limit our possibilities by concluding what we think is true.  However, there might be something else out there that we haven’t experienced yet have no perception of.  Also, this allows you to realize that there is much left to learn and experience. 

10.  Stop Having An Attitude - You should have met the teenage version of me. 

11.  Save Your Money - Being responsible with your finances doesn’t mean you can’t have fun, it actually means you have more freedom and more fun.  It also has made me (sometimes) rethink un-necessary purchases.  I learned this one the hard way.

12.  Take 100% Responsibility For Your Life – Being a victim to circumstances will not get you anywhere.  It’s an easy road and it also sucks.  However, when you get out of victimhood, everything changes for you.

13.  Bring A Coat (And A Rope) - More or less… be prepared. 

14. Research Your Purchases - I’m impulsive.  Sometimes that gets me places, sometimes it doesn’t.  It really doesn’t hurt to research large purchases, search for the best price and quality.  I’m getting better at this.

15.  Don’t Do What I Did - It’s easy to write off your parents advice, the thing of it is, they are giving you advice (usually) based on experience.  They are trying to save you from a mistake or two they made. 

16.  You Know When You Know - This one has saved me from choosing the wrong partner numerous times.  I would ask “how do you know?”… “well, you just know when you know.”  I figured if I was asking… well then I didn’t know.  And then that moment I did know, I finally understood.  This also inspired me to explore my intuitive side and trust my own instincts.

17.  If Everyone Else Is Jumping Off a Bridge… Would You? Well, shit.  No, I guess I wouldn’t.  This advice has led me to follow my own path and think about what is best for me, even if it’s a path less traveled.

18.  Every Day, In Every Way, You Are Getting Better And Better - I couldn’t resist this one.  It’s an amazing affirmation to continue growing as a person each day.

19. Trust The Process - Surrender.  Let go and let God.  Damn, I have a love hate for this one.  It’s so easy to get caught up in our monkey minds, trying to control every situation… it’s also exhausting.  This has taught me to truly let go, the space right when you surrender is the space that all information is available to you.

20.  Agree To Disagree - Everything is just a point of view.  Everyone’s right.  No one is right.  If you can realize this, you will have less grey hair.

21. Religion Is A Choice - I wasn’t raised in a certain religion.  This was one of the biggest gifts my parents could have given me.  They wanted me to be able to choose my believes.  As I grew up and began asking and exploring, they supported each decision I made and each faith I was interested in.

22.  Will It Really Matter In 50 Years… Or Even 5 Years? - Seriously.  My mom always tells this story from when I was little… my brother and I were at home and we were advised to ONLY call my mom at work under an emergency.  So, a few hours into work my mom gets an emergency phone call at work.  She rushes to phone to find out what happened.  ”What is the emergency”  she says.  “Bobby (my brother) ate ALL the fruit roll-ups!”  For me, in that moment, this was a major emergency.  We take these insignificant situations in our lives and make them into these huge issues and obstacles we have to “face” or “go though”.  Asking yourself this question helps to put these things into perspective and choose our upsets.

23.  High School Is Lame – Ok, maybe they didn’t say this, but what they did say was that when you’re in high school everything seems so giant, it’s not.  It’s a short period of your life, who cares if you weren’t cool.

24.  Stay Neutral - Staying neutral isn’t always easy to do and it takes a strong person to keep the peace and not engage in drama.  I learned strength from my parents. 

25.  You Are Not A Mind Reader – I still beg to differ :)  This lesson is about judgment.  It’s so easy to think we know what other people are thinking and create a judgment about them, ourselves, or a situation based on it. 

26.  Always…. Always Call If You Need A Ride - I am positive that my parents would rather not get a phone call at 2am asking them to get out of their cozy beds to drive across the city.  However, it’s nice to know that someone always has your back… and they do.  This has instilled loyalty and dependability in me.

27.  Don’t Burn Bridges - You really never know how your connections and relationships will help you in the future.  This is so true.

28.  Two Dog Is Too Many Dogs - This is advice only given to me by my dad.  Some days I agree fully with this. 

29. It Always Works Out - And it always does.  Your point of view creates your reality.  If I believe it will work out… it will.  (And vice versa)

30.  Don’t Settle - This is some of the best advice I got when it came to relationships.  But also with other things in my life.  I have taken some giant leaps into the unknown because I knew I didn’t have to settle.  Each of those leaps molded me into the person I am today, and this lesson will continue to push me to be and do more in my life.

31.  Mind Your Own Business - My parents are not gossipers and never were.  I’m not saying I don’t get caught up in the moment at times and do my share of gossiping.  However, I always have the awareness somewhere in my being nudging my to choose differently.

32.  Respect Your Partner – There have been times I have seen my parents annoyance with each other.  I have seen them need space from each other.  I have also seen them yell at each other.  But I have never seen them disrespect each other.  

33.  Don’t Give Up The Things You Love - Be who you are.  Don’t pretend you like football if you like reading.  Our interests change as we change.  But giving up the things you love for someone else, is like slowly giving away little pieces of yourself.  It won’t end well.

34.  It Takes Two To Tango – Every time I went on a rant about something, I was reminded that I was part of the equation, which in turn allowed me to develop a greater sense of personal awareness.

35.  Forgiveness – I have seen some people be pretty awful to my parents over my life time.  They always forgive.  Forgiveness isn’t about anyone else besides yourself.  It’s out of your control if someone else is choosing to be an asshole.

36.  Forgive Yourself – I am really hard on myself.  I would say it is safe to say that most people are their own biggest critics.  My parents provided the space for me forgive myself.  Sometimes we start things, thinking it is the best thing for us.. and when we are half way through, we realize it is far from good for us.  Being able to forgive yourself and move on isn’t always easy.

37.  Integrity - Integrity is a personal choice.  Both my parents always chose integrity in their lives and that was something I saw great value in.

38.  Self Love - I’m not sure that self love can be learned.  I think it is developed over time through awareness.  However, watching my parents develop as individuals was key in helping me possess my own self love and respect for myself.

39.  Don’t Try And Change Your Partner - When you get into a relationship, you should know who you are getting into a relationship with.  You should be in complete allowance of that person providing a space for them to be themselves, and grow with you.

40.  Independence - My mom always told me “never depend on a man.”  It sounds a little feminist, however the value behind it is what she wanted to give me.  And that was to be independent, to have my own money and be able to take care of myself without stress.  I think it’s easy to take this too far and not allow yourself to receive from other people, that’s not what it means to me.  Being independent for me means I am happy on my own… emotionally, mentally, materially.  In that space, you can create a stable, respectful, exciting relationship.

 

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