WHOLE KIDS LIFESTYLE COMMUNITY :: KIDS :: CREATIVITY :: HEALTH
luci baines johnson: food police
The Love Cleanse TRANSFORM your L I F E through
INCREASE energy IMPROVE skin clarity ELIMINATE digestive issues REDUCE seasonal allergies LOSE weight BALANCE mood & emotions DETECT food intolerances
Programs starting at $295 Includes guided instructions, teas, shakes, supplements, recipes & more!!
What our clients are saying: “The Love Cleanse has truly been an eye opening and life changing experience for me.... I considered myself healthy, active and I was; however, I never dreamed that I would complete the program feeling better than I ever have in my life. The program has given me an unbelievable knowledge of food and the best part is I am fueling my body with the right foods for me. After four days into the Cleanse, I noticed a drastic difference in the way I was feeling. I had more energy than I was used to and was not dragging in the late afternoon...I have also seen an improvement in my skin and my constant craving for “one bite of something sweet” after every single meal has disappeared – it’s crazy! Kim has been great to work with, what an unbelievable amount of knowledge she shared with me along the way. Completing the Love Cleanse is the best thing I could have done for myself and my family. Thank YOU Kim, from the bottom of my happy heart and soul!”
- Julie Lewis
Visit www.thelovecleanse.com to schedule a complimentary phone call with one of our Love Cleanse Counselors today!
LETTER FROM THE EDITOR
THE WISDOM OF PLAY
ECO-FRIENDLY KIDS’ ROOMS
EATING LOCAL ON THE CHEAP
SOUL FOOD & KIDS INSPIRED GARDENS
NATURAL SUPPORT FOR CHILDREN’S HEALTH
FARMING’S NEXT GENERATION
USING ACCUPUNCTURE TO HELP YOUR LIBIDO
CHICKEN COOP IS THE NEW DOGHOUSE
PEDERNALES FALLS STATE PARK
LIVING GLUTIN AND DAIRY FREE
LUCI BAINES JOHNSON
HERO FIT - EATING
HERO FIT - TRAINING
LAND OF MILK AND HONEY
BARTON CREEK SPA
VIVA DAY SPA
OLD SETTLER’S MUSIC FESTIVAL
THE SELF-WORTH PROJECT
COMMUNITY RENAISSANCE MARKET
Editor’s Letter letter FROM THE EDITOR
WHOLE LIFESTYLE IMPRINT
THE ART OF EMPOWERMENT Whole Kids Lifestyle, our organic resource publication for families, has been in print since the early summer of 2010, and we’ve build a wonderful readership and presence within our community, with the main focus to support and enrich our families and children while we inform about our important cause – the fight against childhood obesity. To draw in more passionate parents, we’ve flourished a special Whole Lifestyle Magazine issue, with the help of some wonderful contributors and photographers, and we were overwhelmed by your positive feedback, and the instant growth of our subscription list. Excited about the many emails from our readers supporting programs such as Whole Kids Adventure and our new family program Hero Fit, and the requests to share success stories and milestones online, we’ve set out to brainstorm with some amazing change makers in our community and powerful talent from organizations such as UT Austin, Zero Signal Productions, and the Media Communications Council, to learn how we can expand our readership and truly make an impact, without re-inventing the wheel. The changes we had in mind included expanding our social media and further supporting community initiatives. All while we look at a more environmentally sound approach to spreading our message, and walk that talk. We saw our social media presence growing recently, and it was inevitable that our young, trendy readers should move to digital media. New families breathe social media and online communities, and they are busy and pressed for time. When resources are needed, families seek them immediately, and look to the web for answers. In addition, we are a very eco-conscious and environmentally friendly community, and so it is within our values to announce to you our new exciting venture, that will allow us to bring you great news and content more frequently, while we utilize our funds to give back to our local community and partner programs. And so we are taking our Whole Lifestyle publication digital—and we embrace new avenues to flourish our message and cause.
| WholeLifestyleMagazine.com | Summer 2011 2011 0404 | WholeLifestyleMagazine.com | February/March
GRAPHIC DESIGN + ILLUSTRATION Rebecca Guenther (firstname.lastname@example.org) PROGRAM MANAGER Ellie Vixie (email@example.com)
We are very excited to announce our partnership with the “It Could Be U” program, a collaboration among Intellectual Entrepreneurship and the Media Communications Council and its parent organization, the Texas Diversity Council. There are so many different ways to support youth in our community, and we are excited to be working with talented students from many schools and colleges, who have teamed up with the Media Communications Council to help create messaging for our cause and our audience.
EDITORIAL ASSISTANT Addison Morris (firstname.lastname@example.org) PROJECT DIRECTOR ONLINE Isabel Lenzer (email@example.com) CONTRIBUTING WRITERS Sarah Stacey, Tere Holmes, Pat Buchta, Rachel Butler, Jordan Kent, Paige Hill, Elizabeth Jordan, Teresa Graham-Brett, Brent King, Amy Persaud, AK Ray, Michelle Savage-Mena, Gena Kirby, Alissa Magrum, Lilly Santos, Alisha Guthery-Morse, Ruth Glendinning, Henci Gaskin, Erika Renz, Amy Tyler, Ramona Watson, Lisa Wolkoff, Chef Alain Braux, Lea PeytonGebhardt, Michael Quist
Become a part of our community if you haven’t yet, by signing up for our newsletter, or visit us on Facebook and Twitter. We’ll lead different forums, post video and interactive content, all with the mission to raise awareness of our educational messages, expand and support our family make-over program Hero Fit, and many other community initiatives that help raise organic children, encourage physical exercise, grow the local food culture, and bring many valuable resources to YOU – our readers.
ARTWORK / PHOTOGRAPHY Sabrina Bean Photography, Carly King, Emily Fitzgerald, Darvin Jones, Alisha Guthery-Morse, Todd V. Wolfson, Steve Vaccariello, Tommy Corey COVER Sabrina Bean Photography WEBSITE www.wholekidslifestyle.com
Share with us what’s on your mind – we love hearing from you! Lene Saint-Orens EDITOR-IN-CHIEF Founder of Whole Kids Projects and Hero Fit
photo courtesy of Emily Faitzgerald Photography // www.efitzgerald.com
In this special edition of Whole Lifestyle Magazine we take on a new passion and opportunity: creating a digital presence to reach a broader audience, while forming strategic and powerful partnerships with organizations that impact our future generations and bring educational and economic empowerment to the community. To create Change. True Change – while thinking green and acting out!
FOUNDER / EDITOR-IN-CHIEF Lene Saint-Orens (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Inspired by varying healthy themes Whole Lifestyle Magazine is a community about positive news, about the people in our community and ideas that are changing our world for the better. Our issues appear free of charge and support our non-profit model Whole Kids Adventure, an innovative new child development model that seeks to change the junk food culture and is fighting child obesity.
All text, photographs, content, including underlying HTML code, designs, and graphics used and/or depicted herein are protected under United States and international copyright and trademark laws and treaties, and may not be used or reproduced without the prior express written permission of Whole Kids Lifestyle LLC and Whole Lifestyle magazine. Whole Lifestyle Magazine is owned and published by Whole Kids Lifestyle LLC, neither of which has any connection or affiliation with Maranda Pleasant or Origin Magazine. Please report any information regarding copying or false statements of affiliation to editor@ wholelifestylemagazine.com. All rights reserved. No part of this e-publication may be used without written permission from the Founder and Editor. Copyright © 2011. Whole Kids Lifestyle LLC. All Rights Reserved.
Summer 2011 | WholeLifestyleMagazine.com | 05
S the wisdom of play
turning a dream into reality Article by Tere A. Holmes // Photographs by Emily Fitzgerald
| WholeLifestyleMagazine.com | Summer 2011
oon, the families of Austin will have the opportunity to enroll their young children in a pre-school program built on innovation, healthy lifestyle, and a focus on giving the children of Austin a physically active program. Whole Kids Adventure (“WKA”) is a Texas non-profit corporation and the vision of Lene Saint-Orens. First and fore-most, Saint-Orens is a mother. Knowing first-hand the challenges that come with the tough decisions associated with child care, she has immersed herself in a mission that would bring the first “Eco-Healthy Child Development Model” to Austin families, with a focus on healthy lifestyle choices, physical activity and organic nutrition, and a shared harvest program attached to it’s palate of offerings. Saint-Orens is inspired by her own life experiences that began with exposure to international child care programs, her education, as well as extensive travel in Europe. These experiences gave her the tools that would be needed to formulate the vision for Whole Kids Adventure. Many families in the United States and specifically Austin are concerned about the growing childhood obesity problem. With that in mind, Saint-Oren’s model will address the growing obesity epidemic in children and adults by implementing a health
focused program that will include organic nutrition programs for children and their families in an eco-friendly environment. The program will also include a focus on wellness and nutrition education for families. WKA is working with a number of community partners in Austin to build the foundation of what will most certainly be a unique model for early care and education. Through a community based model and with the support of corporate sponsors, WKA will identify and create collaborative programs in Austin that will provide wellness, gardening, and nutrition education for the community. Understanding that there is a diverse population in Austin, WKA will serve a variety of populations. Offering this type of child-care program to families with limited resources will also bring increased awareness to the importance of increased physical activity and making healthy lifestyle choices. All meals served to the children and staff will feature locallygrown, hormone free, organic food. Menus are being developed by a local chef who understands that teaching children about the importance of how meals are prepared will simultaneously create a broader understanding of the food culture. The goal to bring this type of meal service to WKA will give children healthy meal options and will allow for the accommodation of special dietary needs. The program will offer specialized progressive learning opportunities including second language learning. Spanish and French will be taught
as part of the curriculum along with creative arts and movement. WKA will open its doors with a commitment to achieving accreditation through a nationally recognized program. WKA is seeking partners to equip the classrooms and kitchen and supply eco-healthy educational materials and learning tools needed by the program. Materials are also being sourced for use on the natural playground area. WKA is also ready to invite additional community partners to become a part of the development and implementation process. Saint-Orens is encouraging participation from a large number of individuals and corporations who share the commitment to bring programs such as these to the children of Austin.
For more information, or how you and your organization can be a founding partner, please email email@example.com.
Drawing by Steinbomer & Associates www.steinbomer.com
Summer 2011 | WholeLifestyleMagazine.com | 07
ki d s i n spi r ed SOUL FOOD veggie gardens
eco-friendly A kids’ rooms Written by Sarah Stacey // Photos by Sandy Carson
hildren spend a lot of time in their rooms. Their bodies are constantly growing and developing...it just makes sense to use nontoxic and organic materials when decorating his or her space. Here are a few areas to keep in mind:
• BED - This is where your child spends the most time, especially if your child is a baby. Choose furniture that is made of real wood and is finished with no-VOC or natural paint or stain. Volatile organic compounds (VOCs) are emitted as gases from certain solids or liquids. VOCs include a variety of chemicals, some of which may have short- and long-term adverse health effects. It is also important to use organic or unbleached cotton bedding, mattress and mattress covers to minimize off-gassing of chemicals. Toxic materials include foam, dyes, formaldehyde finishes, polyester, cotton pesticides and fire retardant chemicals. • FLOORS - Avoid replacing floors if you are setting up a new room, as this will kick up a lot of dirt and dust which will remain in the room for a while, especially carpet. If new flooring is absolutely necessary, choose a natural material such as marmoleum, a natural linoleum floor that is made with 100% natural ingredients: linseed oil, cork, limestone, tree rosin and natural minerals. It does not have to be finished and can easily be wiped clean. I always advise people to stay away from carpet, which can trap dirt, dust, mites, bacteria, mold and food. Toxic materials include vinyl, adhesives and some finishes. • TOYS - Choose quality wood and cloth toys free from toxic paints, glues and dyes. Stuffed toys can trap dust and dust mites, so try putting toys in the freezer for 24 hours every now and then to keep levels down. Also, babies put everything in their mouths, and some plastic toys can leach hormone disrupting chemicals. Toxic materials include some glues, paint and plastics. Of course, use no-VOC paint on walls when repainting since VOCs can cause your child’s eyes to burn for months while the paint cures. To keep your child’s room non-toxic and low allergen, make sure to use natural products when cleaning.
Article by Patrick Buchta
t what point in our lives to we grow up? Is there ever really a time that we feel like we’re in charge, and we no longer need guidance from someone else? I suspect that we may continue to feel this way even as we grow old and lose our parents. This past weekend, I buried my father after a long and brutal illness that had devastated my family for years. But I’m not here to write about loss. Quite the opposite. In a very real way, I feel his presence much more now than I did the past few years when his mind was already gone, his soul merely imprisoned by the feeble body in which he was still bound. During that time, my family and I grieved for him as we lived out this endless waking nightmare day after day. Now, I don’t feel any grief at all; only a restrained sense of relief that he is now free of that pain, and an overwhelming sensation that he is here with me now in a very conscious and real way. It comes down to what our core beliefs really are; and without calling into question any specific dogma, religious doctrine, or cultural label for our specific experience, we all must eventually face these truths and decide where we stand. And in my experience, the soul is just about the only thing that is real. Everything else is merely an illusion. My dad was a charming, successful, funny and generous man who lit up any room he walked into. It seems we search and search for role models in life... images of celebrity in one form or another that we seek to identify ourselves with. I’ve finally found mine; one that fits me like a glove and is unique to me alone. I know I’ll strive for that ideal each and every day of my life. A few days before the funeral, I was checking up on the downtown bar I just opened up with friends. Our electrician was finally done with his work after an intense months-long build-out, and finally took a seat up at the bar. After a drink or two, he finally opened up about his son, whom he lost over Christmas after two tours in Afghanistan. This was the first time he had actually talked about it, and he felt ashamed and angry as the tears came forth, violently and uncontrollably. I told him that it takes a real man to open up and come to terms with his grief. To bottle it up inside seems weak and dishonorable to me. To truly respect the loss of another is to share their memory, and to let them inside of your heart so their soul can continue to guide you onwards. I tried to reassure my friend that no loss is meaningless... his son has saved the lives of countless others and had left a legacy that should inspire anyone who knew him for the rest of their lives. In the end, loss itself is not what we should let rule us. Instead, let’s allow our loved ones to live on within ourselves by sharing their spirit with the world each day. www.patsnewliver.blogspot.com
Sarah Stacey, Eco-Interior Designer / Ecologique Design Austin, TX - # 512.705.7864 – www.ecologiquedesign.com
Written by Rachel Butler
pring. The word alone makes me smile. Birth, rejuvenation, youth, eagerness, warmth. The Spring brings me back to my childhood, making mud pies, playing my grandparents’ food forest, getting dirt between my toes and now being able to share this with the children in my life. This year I played fast and loose with the rules. In central Texas, this is what my Dad calls extreme gardening. Taking that risk to plant early and enjoy that juicy tomato long before mother nature should allow. By the end of February, I couldn’t take it any longer. Gardening is a communal activity to me. I do not mind tending it alone, but that initial planting is a rite of spring. The last week in February, I sent the call out to friends and neighbors to come out and enjoy a backyard garden party, shoes optional. Plus, I had read in the journal Nutrition & Dietetics, August 2011, about a program that used play to promote healthy food consumption resulted in children consuming twice as many vegetables. Here was a great opportunity for the kids in my life to play with in our garden. On a sunny Sunday in February, we chased my chickens, enjoyed wonderful food, set up a compost pile and turned to the garden. My father and I built a beautiful Yin Yang garden last fall, and this would be its inaugural spring planting. How better to celebrate this? I have planted many gardens and quite honestly, the best ones have been with our kids. And they set the rules: The first tip is for you, to leave adulthood behind. Run around a little, play catch, chase, giggle, laugh….get into kid mode. Take your shoes off and get your hands and feet dirty! Kids like to be given some responsibility. Allow them to choose what to plant. Take the time to teach and provide guidance. Make sure and throw in some fast growing, easy yield veggies, green beans, cucumbers, and cherry tomatoes are all good choices. Kids don’t always color in within the lines. Allow for planting to be random and fun. No straight rows here! Decorate with old toys. Paint pieces of scrap wood. Create a bean tee-pee or birdhouse. Mix flowers in with the veggies. Color and variety will keep the kids interested. Plant seeds as well as started plants. It can be fun to track when your seeds sprout. Play in the dirt! Dig holes, look for bugs and worms. Talk about all the life present in the soil. Let Kids plant and pick. Every once in a while I find a fellow green thumb that will weed with me Show love and encouragement! The lessons learned in the garden are lessons your kids will take with them to adulthood. Wonderful memories spent with you. Plants aren’t the only things grown in gardens – love, respect for the earth, and if you are lucky a future gardener! www.foogs.org Summer 2011 | WholeLifestyleMagazine.com | 9
E H W O W T
I S U B
D E L E
S E S S E N
Imagine delicious restaurant delivery… without the restaurant. Entrepreneurs who offer gourmet takeout – post a web menu, hop on a bike, all without an actual storefront – are popping up in Austin now. And don’t forget grocery stores that partner with bike messengers to get their goods to you; even local programs such as Meals on Wheels and area artists now participate in the new trend. Our helmets are off to them. Written by Jordan Kent // Photograph by Lene Saint-Orens
farming’s next generation MAKE WAY FOR AG SCHOOL
Written by Paige Hill // Photography by Lene Saint-Orens
oday’s young farmers don’t want to check out— they want to be part of a community, whether that’s selling microgreens to restaurants from a city plot or operating a CSA in the burbs. Take Paige Hill, a farmer-turneddesigner-turned-farmer who founded and manages the Urban Patchwork Neighborhood Farms, Austin’s first
non-profit neighborhood farm network, whose members work with neighbors to turn unused yard space into farmland that provides fresh, organically grown produce and eggs to the nearby residents of each neighborhood farm. Among fresh local produce, Urban Patchwork offers farm start-up programs, workshops for residents on nutrition, home food production and storage, training and job creation, and
more. She’s also eager to invite our Hero Fit families to her back yard garden harvest day and teach them how they can grow some of their own food and reduce their food bills! Paige’s take on the growing relationship between farmers and residents: “Someone who never related to farming can now show up on a bike, harvest tomatoes, and keep going.” Sounds good to us.
WHOLE FOODS DOWNTOWN BIKE DELIVERY Now delivering Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner. Hours are Monday – Friday 7 a.m. – 6 p.m. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org to order, or call 512.542.2243.
THE SOUP PEDDLER Sign up for your weekly soup order and pick what is tempting your taste buds. The soup will be left on your doorstep (you should have a cooler to participate), according to season and delivery schedule. Check www.souppeddler.com for hours and menu, or call 512.373.7672.
BEAT THE CLOCK BIKE MESSENGERS Beat The Clock is Austin’s first bike-only messenger service for downtown Austin to deliver just about anything faster than gas-powered vehicles. From Courthouse filings to Bank Deposits, or lunch from your favorite place, Beat The Clock is the solution when your to-do list is just too long. www.beattheclockmessengers.com or 512.524.0219.
GOOD BIKE COFFEE The Good Bike is a mobile coffee and desserts vendor specializing in gourmet coffee and cake balls. Located on 2538 Guadalupe Street, they’ll deliver to you between Monday – Friday 7 a.m. – 4 p.m. and Saturdays from 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. 210.410.9262.
MEALS ON TWO WHEELS Through this program, interested volunteers will deliver meals to the homebound via bike on certain routes in East Austin. Volunteers can either use one of MOWAM’s three specially-designed bikes and cooler-holding carts, or bring their own bike and cart. Volunteers are encouraged to sign up to be a substitute or regular bike volunteer for one of their 12 pre-selected bike routes. Call 512.476.6325 for more information and to sign up as a volunteer.
PETER STAATS PHOTOGRAPHY DESIGN STUDIO
Law School is so 90’s. More and more students are heading to one of the countries sustainable agriculture school, drawn by new curriculum emphasizing organic methods, sustainability, and the business savvy they’ll need to thrive. The Texas A&M University, College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, is offering a formal college major in sustainable agriculture, merging theory with roll-up-your-sleeves farm time. Outside of Texas, the Washington State University now offers one of the country’s first major in organic agriculture, while Cal Poly San Luis Obispo lets any undergrad, no matter what her major, minor in sustainable agriculture.
Peter is a talented photographer and urban bicyclist who often takes his bike en route to sessions from his east Austin charmed home, if he’s not shooting portraits in his studio or garden. Check out his art here (if you haven’t already seen his work and casa during the East Austin Studio Tour): peterstaats.com, www.homeaway.com/vacation-rental/p374550 or call 512.473.2277 for availability.
10 | WholeLifestyleMagazine.com | Summer 2011
Summer 2011 | WholeLifestyleMagazine.com | 11
Plenty: Good Uncomplicated Food for the Sustainable Kitchen Diana Henry // Mitchell Beazley Publishing
British food writer Diana Henry believes that one can make delicious food at home without breaking the bank or depleting our planet’s precious resources. With over 300 recipes and hundreds of color photographs, Henry shows today’s home cook how to create meals from all over the world with the ingredients available in local markets throughout the year. She also includes shopping tips to educate the reader on which types of products to buy and from where, and stresses how important it is to “buy local, support good farmers and artisan food producers, and have a thought for sustainability.” This beautiful book will appeal to the novice home cook as well as the more advanced and is that rare cookbook that you want to not only cook and eat everything in but also read cover to cover.
the chicken-coop is the new doghouse The backyard chicken craze spreads like wildfire, and Fidos all over Austin have to share the yard with the ladies. Henhouses run the gamut from DIY to high-design—we’ve seen some clever ones crafted out of refurbished window frames and roof parts. Even our staff brought home chickens and is connecting with farmer’s all over town to look at their creations. Check out the Austin Funky Chicken Coop Tour site for inspiration at fccooptour.blogspot.com and if you’ve missed the tour this year, not to worry. Most backyard gardeners will love to show you what they’ve created.
Uchi: The Cookbook Tyson Cole and Jessica Dupuy, with a foreword by Lance Armstrong // University of Texas Press
Both a local favorite and a nationally renowned restaurant, Uchi has been thrilling palates since it opened its doors in 2003. In this gastronomically and visually stunning cookbook, Uchi’s head chef Tyson Cole and local food writer Jessica Dupuy describe the history and mission of the restaurant and offer readers the opportunity to recreate their favorite Uchi dishes at home. From the restaurant’s daily specials to their full time menu items, this book has instructions and over 150 mouthwatering color photographs for them all. It is the perfect book for any Uchi fan that wants to know more about Chef Tyson Cole’s quest for the perfect bite.
Transform Childhood, Transform the World
Parenting for Social Change Teresa Graham Brett, J.D.
Parenting for Social Change is a powerful parenting book that SOCIAL is not about chilCHANGE dren, but about TERESA GR AHAM BRETT the harmful cultural messages adults perpetuate in their relationships with children. In this compelling call for change, Teresa Graham Brett addresses the work parents must do to free themselves, the children who share their lives, and the world from these harmful messages. Using current research, she debunks the myth that controlling children is necessary to ensure that they grow into healthy and responsible adults. She also shares her own parenting journey away from controlling and dominating children and provides strategies for letting go of harmful control. Through her experiences as a social justice educator, she demonstrates how changing our parent-child relationships plays a critical role in creating social change.
Reviews by Elizabeth Jordan // Head Buyer // BookPeople
12 | WholeLifestyleMagazine.com | Summer 2011
Teresa Graham Brett, J.D., brings together her knowledge, skills, and passion as a social justice educator and leader in higher education for over 20 years with her experience as a parent in advocating for fundamental change in the adult-child relationship. Using her experience facilitating transformative learning, she is able to help others question their assumptions and see the world from a new perspective. In particular, she challenges adults to rethink their views of childhood and their resulting treatment of children from a paradigm of control and domination. Ms. Brett is sought out for speaking engagements and workshop facilitation across the United States. Her website, www.ParentingForSocialChange.com, is visited by parents from across the globe who value her experiences and perspectives as a parent and social justice educator.
south congress we love you so much
Article by Brent King Photographs by Carly King and Sabrina Bean Photography
ustin is more than the sum of its parts. Each neighborhood nook and cranny adds influence, flavor, and color: an ambiance synergy so to speak. Whole Lifestyle wants to bring you into these neighborhoods. Discover what makes each of them a world unto themselves, take a look at the quality of life with their borders, immerse yourself the flavors that keep Austinites rooted at home. First up, one of the hippest locations in the state, South Congress or SoCo.
returned SoCo to it former glory. The SoCo neighborhood today runs south down Congress Street from the Congress Street Bridge to Oltorf and west to First Street. It’s an eclectic amalgam of the modern and traditional. Historic landmarks dot the sidewalks between retro-styled dwellings and rightangled modernism. It’s more than just a location; SoCo is a flavor that is unique to Austin. The Median Income in SoCo is slightly above the Austin average at just over $60,000 a year. An average singlefamily home sells for around $210,000 where the average rent is about $634. The average age of the Austinites who call SoCo is 28. They are well educated (40 percent have a college degree) and single, (reportedly only 8 percent are married). It’s no wonder that SoCo is quickly becoming known as a singles haven. The area’s main artery that is South Congress Avenue naturally carries with it the neighborhood’s greatest population of eateries. Here you can taste anything from an exquisite cup of hot and steamy or iced-cold Joe at Jo’s Coffee, (www.joscoffee.com), to the Gambertti and polenta at Botticelli’s, (www.boticellissouthcongress.com) (See review in this issue!). It’s hard to pass up getting a cupcake at the Hey Cupcake (www.heycupcake.com) Airstream over in the unofficially named South Congress Trailer Park Row. Tip a cold one at the Continental Club (www.continentalclub. com) while basking in the history of one of Austins most treasured clubs, or grab a sandwich any time day or night at the famous Magnolias Café, (www. themagnoliacafe.com). Although there’s much to eat on South Congress, there’s much to see and even more to browse. The scrawled “I Love you so much” sign on the side wall of Jo’s coffee that faces the “I love you more” sign of the Snack Bar. There’s
The history of South Congress marches in line with the history of Austin. In 1852 it became the main highway from San Antonio as well as the postal route when James Gibson Fisher granted the access through his farm for the road. It wasn’t however until 1910 when the concrete bridge across the river was finished that South Congress really began to grow. As automobiles grew in numbers so did the businesses serving them along South Congress. This trend continued until the 1940’s when Interstate 35 was completed. Travel-service businesses slowly relocated to I-35 freeing up space that was quickly filled by artists, musicians, and small retailers creating the atmosphere we recognize today. There was a short period of time in the late 70’s to early 90’s that South Congress dipped into the seedier life but a recent resurgence in trendy retail shops and restaurants has 14 | WholeLifestyleMagazine.com | Summer 2011
April/May 2011 | WholeLifestyleMagazine.com | 39
PASSIONATE ABOUT ORGANIC COFFEE AND THE COMMUNITY Written by Amy Persaud
the slightly phallic and certainly historic Austin Motel sign, and the beautiful grounds of the Texas School for the Deaf. Feel like shopping? You can step back into history at one of the many antique or junkque stores, such as Uncommon Objects (www.uncommonobjects.com) or pick up some organic, locally grown food at the Farm to Market Grocery, (www.fm1718.com). The SoCo neighborhood is more than just South Congress Avenue. Venture west and you’ll find things come with a bit more spice. Some of the best authentic Mexican food in the city can be found on the banks of First Avenue. There’s El Mercado (www. elmercadorestaurant.com), Torchy’s Tacos (www.torchystacos.com), as well as Izzoz Tacos (www.izzoztacos.com). You can visit the historic Robert Stanley
16 | WholeLifestyleMagazine.com | Summer 2011
house or find your own historic treasures at Amelia’s Retro, Vogue, and Relics. If you head east you’ll find yourself along the banks of the Blunn Creek. You can walk you dog from the Little Stacy Park to the Big Stacy Park where you can dive into the community pool. Travel to the northern edge of the neighborhood and you can let your dog run free in Town Lake, (Lady Bird Johnson Lake) shores dog park. Don’t forget that the first Thursday of every month is an event in SoCo. Business along South Congress stay open late and host one big block party, Austin style. SoCo is one of the hippest neighborhoods in a very hip city. The vibe and the vision blend with the unbuttoned attitude of a West Coast hippy to create an atmosphere that is uniquely Austin.
Locally owned and operated Monkey Nest is an environmentally and socially conscious coffee shop with superior customer service. Founder and owner Koris Derakhshani had a vision of a great coffee house when he designed this great family space. An engineer by day, he was a huge consumer of coffee. With the support of his wife and friends, and a short six months of hard but creative work, Monkey Nest coffee house became a reality. From the beginning, Derakhshani’s vision was a variety of comforting food and great tasting coffee, in an environment that would “welcome all spectrum of life, with flexibility and family in mind.” They have listened to their customers on the food selection when incorporating musthave new items such as protein goods or boiled eggs for local CROSSFIT members. Working as a team, all inspired members of the Nest team will listen to what the customers embrace, and will create it to the best of their ability. Their creative spaces include an Artist Wall (artists receive the full amount of their sales) and a little nook for children beside a cozy fireplace. Monkey Nest supplies fun games and reading, so moms and dads alike can grab some latte while their children are safely entertained. Check their listings on Facebook or their website to find out about live music entertainment and other events. In the future, Monkey Nest hopes to continue growth by giving back in the form of community giving projects that will support local charities. They have a warm, friendly presence, and a steady stream of customers who love to take advantage of the fresh foods, the locally provided variety of organic teas made by Zhi Tea, and a meeting room in the back of the café – available to your group for a cup of coffee! The delicious coffee is organic – pastries and lunch items are eclectic and international. Monkey Nest strives to use all local and natural ingredients. We’re sure you’ll love Monkey Nest just as much as we do – be sure to check out this little gem.
Located at 5353 Burnet Road, Austin, TX 78756 Call or visit their website to reserve a meeting room: monkeynestcoffee.com Hours: Mon-Thu 6a.m.-9p.m., Fri–Sat 6a.m.–10p.m. Sun 7a.m.–9p.m.
Summer 2011 | WholeLifestyleMagazine.com | 17
luci baines johnson our children are our future
Article By Lene Saint-Orens || Images by Sabrina Bean Photography
t’s a cool morning in Austin, Texas, and I’m on my way to the office and home of Luci Baines Johnson. I’m invited to finish up the interview we’ve started a week prior at the 4th Annual LBJ100 Bike Ride, just outside of Johnson City. I couldn’t wait to engage in more conversation about safe foods for our community and to learn about her views of raising healthy children, while managing a high-profile career and being an advocate for education and health. Covering the 4th Annual LBJ100 Bike Ride was an amazing experience, not only because we had the pleasure of touring the “Ranch” and the “White House”, but also because we were allowed to take a peek behind closed doors and meet family and friends. Luci Baines Johnson’s parents, widely known as Lady Bird and former U.S. President Lyndon Johnson, generously gave the LBJ Ranch to the National Park Service, and the LBJ100 Ride was founded to ‘Preserve History.’ Surrounded by nature, I very much understand the love for the preserved space, and engagement to protect its wildlife and history. We had such a great day at the ranch, and were excited to meet again for more conversation, hopefully around the kitchen counter. Having been called the Food Police for many years among my friends and colleagues, curiosity struck when I heard we carry the same “Nickname”—I wonder how different our parenting styles are, how her exercise regimen and culinary routine stay present when traveling and managing a busy career, and if it’s true that staff is exercising with her in the wee-morning hours and even competing about who lost the most weight in the shortest time frame. We are greeted by Luci Baines Johnson’s assistant and offered to enjoy the view from the terrace while we set up our equipment. I hear the sound of chopping in the kitchen, otherwise it’s quiet—soothing surroundings, nothing points to hectic and stress. A grand piano—endless books—pictures with the writing “Lady Bird” and other Presidential Memoires in the form of framed photographs or letters are displayed in the entry way. A pink post-it catches my eye, taped to a door. Written on it is “Love, Annie.” Modern Art—sweet smell of cooking interrupts my thoughts, and then Luci Baines Johnson walks in. She greets us warmly, wearing a cycling outfit. “Good morning, I remembered you’d come today, so I thought I’ll wear something to fit the theme.”
| WholeLifestyleMagazine.com | Summer 2011
She’s full of energy. It’s Tuesday morning, her workout day with trainer Maurice. I ask her if she got her workout in already? “Oh yes, we work out at 6:30 a.m.—I feel great, but that was more duty than delight.” She’s motivated, and carries herself with incredible strength. I feel empowered to ask more questions, such as ‘Who’s chopping in the kitchen, do you like to cook?’—“Oh yes,” she answers, “I love to cook, but today I have a little help as we’re preparing to travel. I love to cook when I can. It’s such a cathartic experience for me. Come take a look at my fridge.” Really? We walk through the living room and into the spacious kitchen. She opens the fridge and it’s a heaven for organic chefs. Absolutely nothing processed. Organic produce, prepared snacks, and a full drawer of greens. She then tells us about her Vitamix, a bit expensive but worth saving up for (that is, when you’re the writer of this article), and about her motivation for building a staff fitness center just a few floors down where she works—“I’m selfish actually. I don’t want my staff to be out sick, or depressed, and many have been overweight and constantly stressed or tired for many years. I have staff that lost anywhere from 50 lbs. up to 70 lbs. And they feel great. To workout together is amazing. The return in dedication to our work, and the more relaxed atmosphere (and of course less sick days), make it all worth it. One of the greatest assets are my employees, so I want to be sure I invest in them and empower them.” She sure walks that talk. What secrets does she have to stay healthy? “I swim, and love to cycle on weekends, but I wouldn’t say I have secrets for staying fit. I recognized long ago that there was truth in my mother’s childhood admonition to me—‘you are what you eat.’ As I have aged, I’ve come to realize that if I don’t eat right and don’t exercise, I have to face the consequences. I don’t feel as good, and as a result, I don’t look as good and am not as happy as I am when I otherwise exercise and take care of proper nutrition.” We discuss plastic bottles vs. aluminum bottles, organic gardening (she purchased a little organic herbplanter for her husband’s birthday), and how important it is to grow the local food culture. It’s less about the discipline for her, and more about a Lifestyle, that helps her to enjoy the gift of living and be a gift to Life. When her mother fell very ill, she was trying to be her primary caregiver, while she helped manage her family’s business, and be a loving presence for her children and grandchildren. “There was a strong temptation to
Summer 2011 | WholeLifestyleMagazine.com | 19
eliminate exercise from my routine in order to gain an extra hour in the day. But every time I did that, I regretted it later, because when I skipped the exercise, and didn’t eat right, I didn’t find myself as productive, relaxed and at peace with life—and,” she laughs, “I probably am nicer to be around when sticking to that routine.” We all struggle to keep our schedules and juggle family responsibilities, and that certainly takes its toll, especially among low-income families who struggle more than ever with the rising obesity numbers, and whose children are more at risk for serious health diseases later in life. “Childhood obesity isn’t an easy issue. Much of it is tied to access to and understanding of healthy affordable choices. Our Children are our future— if we put garbage into them, we are more likely to see the consequences down the line. I applaud Mrs. Obama for awakening our nation to the importance of reducing childhood obesity.” We talk about local organizations, such as Whole Kids Adventure, and their Hero Fit program, who are stepping up to educate families and their children about healthy choices, and helping to reduce childhood obesity. And she knows all too well how a serious illness can strike quickly— just last year, Luci Baines Johnson was admitted to the ICU with a rare and serious disorder. How did she bounce back from this illness? “Aside from having wonderful family, physicians, nurses, friends and physical therapists that made such a difference in my life, I have no doubt that being in good physical condition has helped and was a blessing beyond measure. Balance is my intent, but of course not always my achievement. When I’m traveling now, I try to stay within my ideal weight, and grab healthy prepared snacks from home.” Her favorite snack? “Yoghurt. I try to eat my biggest meal at breakfast, less at lunch and my smallest meal at dinner. Dinner by 6:30p.m.—starchy foods earlier in the day. I sometimes get carried away and so I’ve been called the Food Police a lot. But so are you. We have to watch that.” When it comes to motivating her children to stay healthy, she explains that they’ve all mastered something from boxing to marathons to a litany of team sports and luckily, they now inspire her, not vice versa. She tries to entice them to cycle, work out or swim with her because she loves their companionship. However, these are not 20 | WholeLifestyleMagazine.com | Summer 2011
their athletic choices, and, “Their skill levels on their worst days far exceed my best.” Hard to believe, I’ve just seen Luci Baines Johnson a week earlier complete a 30-mile ride, greeting supporters and staff shortly after, before she took time to mingle with our Whole Lifestyle crew, and head back to her grand-daughter for an afternoon of play and family time. “My mother said that God forgot to put in my “self preservation” mechanism— so rest has never been my long suit.” “Parenting was always my greatest love and most important job, and I try so very hard to be worthy of my children and grandchildren. I adored being a room mother, field trip driver, school volunteer of all stripes. I served on a school board, in the little league concession stand, and adored having my children’s friends in my home and abundance. Public service was no more optional than oxygen for our family. So it was a way of life, not a duty.”
She’s humble, and kind—and while she states that she’s the one blessed, I have to admit that I walk away feeling blessed. Encouraged and empowered by her honest stories, and gratitude for supporters of her love for nature and family legacy. “I’ve learned that if you keep a healthy lifestyle, you can be a healthier presence in the lives of those you love.” And then I remember that little pink post-it note, and have to smile as she waves good-bye. It doesn’t matter how high-profile your life is, or how busy your schedule, if at the end of the day you get to cook with your grandchild, while making a difference in her life, it’s all worth it.
Find out more information about the Annual LBJ100 Bike Ride at: www. lbj100bicycletour.org
IS TO TURN
OF OUR PERSONAL TRAININGS PROGRAM
INTO YOUR OWN PERSONAL
Only you are guaranteed to be with you for the rest of your life. We donÕt teach you how to use a particular machine, we teach you how to exercise properly to achieve goals, rehabilitate injuries, and prevent future injuries.
nutrition is the basis • Learn how to eat properly based on your goals • Build strength and whole health •
being fit isnÕt a look itÕs a feeling. coachmofitness.com
HEALTHY MEALS DON’T COME IN BOXES
Summer 2011 | WholeLifestyleMagazine.com |21
the LoveLife Method transform your life through food
Article by AK Ray // Photography courtesy of Kim Love
| WholeLifestyleMagazine.com | Summer 2011
f you’re feeling majorly sluggish, worn down or just plain blah and you’re sick and tired of feeling sick and tired…it might be time to consider doing The LoveLife Method. The LoveLife Method (formerly The Love Cleanse), created by nutritional counselor, Kim Love, is a 7-day guided program, which is accessible to everyone. The cleanse kicks off with a 7-day FOOD based cleanse in which 3 alkalizing meals per day nourish the system, along with added juices, teas, shakes and supplements. The first week, Phase 1, gently detoxifies the system. 10-20 of the most common inflammatory foods are eliminated from the diet to get the detox going full throttle. In Phase 2, the discovery phase, a food is integrated every 3 days and with daily guidance from a LoveLife Method Coach, one’s reaction to these various foods is monitored. The system is balanced with the optimal quantities and sequencing of carbohydrates and proteins. “Our ultimate goal is for our clients to be completely tapped into their own inner intuition around foods and to feel empowered with knowing how to take care of themselves and their families through the foods they eat every day,” Love states. “ We are all so unique. Some of us thrive on a plant-based diet while others do best with meats. Our role is to guide our clients to discovering the impact of food in every area of their lives. We want them to walk away empowered and knowing exactly how to eat, when to eat, what to eat, and what not to eat–to live their best possible lives.” says Love. The LoveLife Method officially
started in August 2008 out of a health crisis that Love was experiencing which included fatigue along with a long list of other debilitating symptoms. Her physicians were unable to resolve her severe health issues, yet alone diagnose, so she devoted herself to healing through natural methods. At the time she was eating what she thought was a healthy vegetarian, non-processed, plant based diet. Through a detox series, natural healing modalities and an elimination diet, she was able to identify 8-10 major intolerances that had been sickening her body for years upon end. Through this process she healed herself and resolved her life long digestive issues. After years of chronic digestive inflammation, she discovered that she had Leaky Gut Syndrome. Her own personal health journey inspired her to help friends through their own challenges. In August 2008, one of her friends requested that he pay her to put together a program for him using food as a mechanism to help him thrive. Thus was born The Love Cleanse. “I was always drawn to the healing qualities of food. Food is an incredibly powerful portal for personal discovery, growth and development. When we realize how good we can feel through diet and we make visceral connections with food and our mood, food and digestion, food and our energy, food and our weight – it becomes easier to want to make the changes and can even be addictive. Becoming addicted to feeling good, is in my opinion, a healthy addiction.” Love says. “Even after almost 3 years, I’m still amazed by what we witness each day. Lifelong migraines that were caused by nuts, seasonal “allergies”
JOHN F. METCALF
which resolve after eliminating citrus, chronic neck pain created from eating chicken – the list goes on and on and the journey is amazing. I learn as much from my clients as they do from me.” Busy traveling executives make up a large part of Love’s clientele. Also parents are using the elimination and reintegration part of the program (minus the cleanse) for discovering if food intolerances are contributing to various physical and behavioral issues in their children. Love shared that there seems to be a connection between food intolerances passed down from parents to children. “Through uncovering their own food intolerances, several of my clients have also been able to identify their children’s.” Love states. Busy beyond belief? The Love Cleanse has launched a partnership with Greenling Organics that significantly reduces shopping and time spent in the kitchen. Using Love’s recipes, Greenling Organics has created an exclusive Recipe Basket, which includes a nightly 3-course dinner that is already washed, prepped, chopped, mixed and ready to go. Launching soon is the RESET cleanse, which is designed for those that are looking for a kick off to healthy eating patterns, along with a good food based cleanse. While it does not test food intolerances or enable one to learn about optimal carbs/proteins, it is a much shorter program - 10 days vs. 5-7 weeks – where one will change their eating patterns, reduce cravings, kick off a weight loss initiative and adopt a healthier eating lifestyle. www.thelovecleanse.com Summer 2011 | WholeLifestyleMagazine.com | 23
ne urban spa experience that should not be missed is a day at milk + honey spa. Both the downtown location, on Colorado St. between 2nd and 3rd, and the spa at the Hill Country Galleria make enjoying a little stay-cation simple and relaxing. Along with their amazing services, and knowledgeable staff, owners, Alissa and Shon Bayer, are making every effort to minimize the environmental impact of their business. This takes the guilt out of spending the afternoon being pampered and preened. milk + honey’s downtown spa first opened its doors five years ago, and since then has been raking in the awards for ‘Best Spa’ from the likes of the Daily Texan and Les Nouvelles Esthétiques & Spa magazine, and ‘Best Places to Work 2010’ by the Austin Business Journal. It is one of the top 500 fastest growing small businesses in the country, yet this spa still manages to take an active part in the community. Every year, milk + honey donates to dozens of local charity events. It is hard to believe that a true retreat begins seconds after arrival. Just wrapping up in a plush robe, chilling in a dimly lit lounge, and sipping a cup of tea takes the edge off, and this before the services begin. A day at milk + honey could include one of their lux manicures or pedicures, massage and body treatments including scrubs and steam treatments, and facials, peels, or waxing from some of Austin’s finest estheticians. The staff in every department, from the front desk to each and every therapist is friendly, knowledgeable, and highly skilled in their respective fields. The cost of services at milk + honey are on par with other day spas. A onehour swedish massage, called the lux massage, is $95, an m+h pedicure is $50, and a signature facial is $95. Guests of milk + honey accrue VIP points with every visit, which can rapidly add up to gift certificates called ‘milk money’. Often additional discounts are offered as part of the spa’s ‘last minute emails’ that go out bi-weekly, letting customers know where there are openings in the schedule. Spa owners, Alissa and Shon Bayer are deeply committed to establishing “green” practices throughout their business and recently purchased Renewable Energy Certificates from Austin-based Green Mountain Energy. Also, the produce available in the lounge comes from Greenling, a distributor for local farm goods. One thing that sets milk + honey apart from most other day spas is it’s efforts to use and sell the highest quality, organic products it can find. From vegan nail polish, to the Eco-Inventives skin care line, and the handmade scrubs for body treatments, it’s nice to be able to trust that there are no parabens or harmful chemicals in any of their products. Above all, milk + honey simply has a good feeling about it. Both the staff and the environment are professional without being pretentious and it is a place to take a lover or a mother when feeling generous. So, let’s find some time to explore their menu, and relax while you get pampered!
milk + honey spa | milkandhoneyspa.com SALON by milk + honey | milkandhoneysalon.com
The land of milk + honey Article by Michelle Savage-Mena
24 | WholeLifestyleMagazine.com | Summer 2011
Summer 2011 | WholeLifestyleMagazine.com | 25
the three springs spa experience at
BARTON CREEK RESORT & SPA
article by Gena Kirby // photography by Sabrina Bean
ranquility, peacefulness, and calm: these are three states that are rarely experienced in day-to-day life by a mother of three young children. Most days are hectic – full of laughter, tears, and a lot of yelling (mostly) by the children. Motherhood is not just a job, it’s an adventure. Sure, that’s the Army’s tag line, but I will gladly swipe it in the name of moms everywhere. We love our jobs, but just like with any other job, we deserve to take a break. Long ago in another life I had a union job, and our breaks were mandatory! Wow, imagine motherhood if run by a union! “Excuse me ma’am, you’ve changed your fifth diaper of the day, it’s time to take your twenty minute break.” It would probably take a union to get most moms to take one. We spend most of our days taking care of everyone but ourselves. Healthwise, this type of selfless behavior is 26 | WholeLifestyleMagazine.com | Summer 2011
unwise. In order for moms (and dads) to keep filling everyone else’s cup, we must continually fill our own. What can we give if we have nothing to give? So, to my fellow parents out there, I implore you to please take one day a week and do something just for you. Take an hour for yourself to read a book alone, relax outside – whatever it takes to put you in a good place. Then once a month do something really decadent for yourself. Truly though, this special something is not JUST for you, it’s for your spouse and your children. This is easier said than done – as much as I know I do need a break, there’s that little something called Guilt that keeps me from picking up the phone and making time for myself. Guilt is not your friend and Guilt doesn’t care that you need “me” time. Guilt, however, doesn’t clean the house or make your kids breakfast, so once a
month or so, pick up the phone and make an appointment at your favorite spa. Because it’s hard for me to tell Guilt where to go, it was exciting to find myself driving out to Barton Creek Resort for an afternoon of rest and relaxation. Just driving into the resort was relaxing. The hill country surroundings are absolutely gorgeous (even more so since I wasn’t driving). If you can, I highly recommend you find a friend to drive you, because nothing erases a day of pampering like traffic! After parking, I walked into the spa shop and was greeted with a warm smile by Shauna Ominsky, who is the director of spa and wellness. She immediately welcomed me with an outstretched hand, at the end of which was a cool glass of white wine. As I mentioned before, I wasn’t driving, so how could I say no? Before the start of my treatment, I was led to the tranquility room, where guests are invited to
unwind before beginning any of the wide array of treatments available. Now, I used to work in resorts, back in that other life I mentioned, so I’m used to resorts naming rooms. Generally it’s a nicely appointed room with a name attached like Peace or Serenity. So I was expecting to sit for a minute in some cutesy resort room, but instead I was transported to another world (or so it seemed). When Shauna opened the door, the first thing I saw in this room was a window that looked out on something I had never seen up close before in real life. Shauna explained that they recently discovered a limestone wall that ran along a piece of the property. The resort made the most of this amazing and breathtaking discovery by showcasing it and allowing this room to deservingly be called the TRANQUILITY room. I sat with my wine glass in hand in the dimly lit room on a comfortable chaise lounge, and watched pure spring water trickle down the timeworn surface of the limestone as water sounds and music were pumped into the room. The room and view take on that “out of this world” feeling, due to the designer’s use of ambient colored lighting shone onto the limestone, which changes the feeling in the room every few minutes. The space can be rented out, or you can get a 25-minute service in there. I could have lost myself in the calmness of that room for days if they would have let me. As it was, I only spent ten beautiful peaceful
minutes of quiet relaxation. Just seeing this room would be reason enough to jump in the car and head out toward Barton Creek Resort and the Three Springs Spa Experience. My experience had only begun. After the tranquility room, I was led to another level of the spa where I was introduced to Kimberly Jensen Parker, a massage therapist and esthetician for 20 years. She instantly put me at ease and led me toward the locker rooms to change into a spa robe and slippers. Afterwards she led me to a dimly lit room where she instructed me to lay down on my back. I was about to experience one of the spa’s amazing body treatments: THE MEXICAN CHOCOLATE CAYENNE SCRUB. I, of course, was covered by two small strategically placed towels (I was given the option of a shower cap – I passed). Once I was settled, Kimberly began mixing together some lovely smelling ingredients. She explained that she was mixing crushed chocolate, cayenne pepper and vanilla coffee beans. It smelled divine, and straight away Kimberly got to exfoliating me all over. It felt great to feel all my stress being scrubbed away. Kimberly explained that the fat in the chocolate would work to make my skin feel incredibly soft afterward. The coffee and cayenne served as stimulants and antioxidants. After I was sufficiently scrubbed, I was wrapped up in a sheet and covered with a Mylar sheet. It was lovely being tucked
in and so warm, from the Mylar and the cayenne working it’s magic. While I lay there warm and cozy, Kimberly massaged my aching head. I had no idea I needed that massage so badly, but just as I thought my experience was over, I was unwrapped and directed to wash off in the adjacent shower. Again, I thought I knew what I would be stepping into, yet I found I had stepped into a dream of a shower. Five shower heads at different heights washed warm water all over me, which was such a pleasant experience that I really didn’t want to get out. However, it turns out I needed those five shower heads because chocolate and coffee aren’t as easy as you might think to wash off. I went through two wash cloths! Kimberly had mentioned earlier that this treatment is easy to do at home, and it probably would be, except for the messy side of the whole affair. As lovely as you feel afterward, you would still have all the cleanup to deal with, so I decided if I were to repeat this experience it would be here and with Kimberly. After my shower, I toweled off and could not believe how I felt. My skin was as soft as my two-year-old’s! Next, I was told to lay down again where I was lathered in vanilla body butter. Posttreatment, I got dressed and floated (at least it felt that way) down to the pool where I met my sister, who was waiting to chauffeur me home. She said I was “positively glowing.” I told her to touch my arm – she did, then she did again, her wide eyes saying everything about how soft I felt. Perhaps the most pleasant benefit was the wonderful smell of cayenne and cocoa that became my parfum du jour! The spa brochure said the Mexican Chocolate Cayenne Scrub was refreshing and rejuvenating. This was absolutely no exaggeration; I felt years younger. To celebrate my stolen moments and renewed spirit, we stayed and had lunch by the pool on this gorgeous day in Austin. Arriving home to my children, I found myself in such a great place mentally. With a constant grin and more patience than usual, my cup was full and I was able to give more of myself to them. I know life is hectic and busy, but you have to take time for you, if only to truly enjoy your hectic busy life. Try it, you deserve it, I hope to see you by the pool glowing…. Barton Creek Resort and Spa is located at 8212 Barton Club Drive Austin, Texas 78735 www.bartoncreek.com/spa Spa Reservations 512-329-4550
Summer 2011 | WholeLifestyleMagazine.com | 27
Article by AK Ray
Set aside a couple of those cherished hours of yours, grab your BFF and your flip flops and get ready to set your dial to ‘blissed out’ at Viva Day Spa. The locally owned spa, owned by three women, has two locations in Austin.
28 | WholeLifestyleMagazine.com | Summer 2011
isters Maya and Laurie Aroch, along with their friend Shannon Mouser, officially opened Viva in 2005 at 1811 W. 35th St. In 2008, they opened another location at 215 South Lamar Blvd. Their vision was to create a warm, healing and inviting place for clients to come and receive their well deserved pampering. The family affair continues with Maya’s husband’s artwork adorning the walls. Austin artist Darvin Jones’ work contributes to the relaxed and organic experience. There are several high end beauty lines that are available at Viva: SkinCeuticals, Eminence Organics Skin Care, Bumble and Bumble, Kneipp, Jane Iredale Mineral Cosmetics, along with the scintillating Voluspa candles. These may be purchased in the cozy and serene lobby before or after treatments. The South Lamar location is equipped with three pedicure stations and two manicure stations. There are two ample luxurious shower rooms, six tranquil massage rooms, three skincare rooms, and an infrared sauna. They also have a duet room, which is actually two rooms that are connected, for those couples or friends would like to enjoy massages simultaneously. Before, after, or in between treatments, clients may partake in complimentary tea, cucumber water, wine and various snacks. The clientele demographic consists of mostly women, but the owners say that more and more men are coming in for their spa time too. Stressed out college students often utilize Viva for stress management, waxes, and facials. Gift certificates have been found to be popular and welcomed graduation gifts. Viva is also a popular destination for spa parties and bachelorette parties. Guests are invited to indulge in
revitalizing spa treatments including: massages, facials, manicures, pedicures, hair removal and spa packages. Posted on their wall is this lovely quote by Audrey Hepburn, summing up how to attain true beauty: For Attractive lips, speak words of kindness. For lovely eyes, seek out the good in people. For a slim figure, share your food with the hungry. For beautiful hair, let a child run their fingers through it once a day. For poise, walk with the knowledge that you never walk alone. People, more than things, have to be restored, renewed, revived, reclaimed and redeemed. Remember, if you ever need a helping hand, you will find one at the end of each of your arms. As you grow older, you will discover that you have two hands, one for helping yourself and the other for helping others.
What are you waiting for? We suggest you schedule your treatment and indulge in the art of pampering. Viva on 35th 1811 West 35th St, Austin, TX 78703 512.300.2256 Viva on Lamar 215 South Lamar Blvd, Austin, TX 78704 512.472.2256 www.vivadayspa.com
Summer 2011 | WholeLifestyleMagazine.com | 29
the two worlds of DARVIN JONES
arvin Jones is a local artist, who allows no boundaries for himself when creating art and making music. His latest series of paintings, Nomenclature, evokes a sense of wonder and a wide array of emotions from the viewer, with symbolic imagery that reflects the nature of music and art. Darvin studied sound art and musicology at Evergreen State College in Washington and earned a Master of arts in acoustic ecology and soundscape composition at Simon Fraser University in British Columbia, Canada. After spending years in the world of sound, he stumbled into painting and found an immediate gratification from the direct tangibility that exists in visual art. His art is based solely on composition where simplicity, clean lines, the enticement of color and an unrequited passion guide the process. “There is no method to what and how I paint except that I begin with a vision and statement I wish to produce”. After the initial point of departure his artistic process is left to ‘chance’ and a collapse of objective foresight. “My work begins and ends in inspiration and constantly evolving as an artist, the worlds concens are left at the door and subjectivity is fully embraced while the compositional principles explored”. Jones curiosity in painting is found in the interplay between nature and urban development, consumption and waste, displacement and adaption, communication and ecology and pop culture and the loss of meaning in our contemporary landscape. Ultimately though his artistic mission is simple, “I just want to make art that gives me happiness and in return makes others happy. Painting for me is an infusion of power, of energy or expression based on growth, instead of the historical models based in self defeating artistic suffrage, which gets you nowhere”. Check out his “Eco-Art” collection at Viva Day Spa, one of our top-rated spa’s that he visually transformed with his stunning work. Nomenclature, his new work on exhibit at Austin Details Art + Photo from May 12-July 1, brings his two worlds together to give definition and meaning to the intersections of art and music. www.darvinjones.com / http:// launch787.com/general/the-two-worlds-ofdarvin-jones-2/
be safe in the water and have the
BEST DAY EVER! Article by Alissa Magrum, Executive Director at Colin’s Hope.
The smiling little boy in goggles is Colin Holst. Colin lived in Austin and was a happy, fun loving 4 year old little boy. He loved playing with his friends and his family. He completed swim lessons. But tragically, in 2008 he drowned in a public pool with family, friends and lifeguards present. Colin’s Hope was created in his honor to promote and increase water safety awareness because DROWNING IS PREVENTABLE. I am the Executive Director of Colin’s Hope. I am a swimmer. I am a mom. I NEVER imagined that drowning would affect me…until Colin drowned. He and my daughter, Ella went to the same preschool. We live in the same community, where summers are hot, even sweltering at times. We jump into the same pools and lakes daily to cool off. Swimming is a necessity and should be FUN! I hear stories of parents who pulled their child from the bottom of a pool and performed CPR. I listen to middle
32 | WholeLifestyleMagazine.com | Summer 2011
school kids tell me that they cannot swim but want to learn how. I see parents and their children not wearing life jackets at the lake. I read news stories about children falling into unfenced backyard pools or drowning in bathtubs when left unattended for even a moment. These stories are heartbreaking and need to be rewritten. They can and should be stories of children who have completed swim lessons. Or stories about FUN AND SAFE family trips to the lake or the beach. DROWNING IS PREVENTABLE. Colin’s Hope wants to help ensure a fun and safe summer for you and your family. Please spend a few minutes reading these simple water safety tips and share them with everyone you know because DROWNING IS PREVENTABLE! These simple steps could save a life! To learn more about Colin’s Hope or to get involved, please visit our website www.colinshope.org, friend us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter. www.colinshope.org
Summer 2011 | WholeLifestyleMagazine.com | 33
we used to always agree... CAN A FRIENDSHIP BREAK OVER THE VIEW OF OUR CHILDREN’S EDUCATION? By Lilly Santos
o-coa! Co-coa! Co-coa!” Sam thunders rhythmically around, throwing silverware on the table and letting us know, in a very vocal and loud manner, what his top choice of breakfast drink is this morning. I look at the seven-year-old, waiting for the verbal tsunami to roll in – as I typically deal with situations like 34 | WholeLifestyleMagazine.com | Summer 2011
this – but I remain silent. Because Sam is not my child, he’s the son of my friend Hanna. It is Sunday. Time to hang out with friends. We enjoy breakfast together. My friend Hanna responds calmly to the rumble of her son. She opts for the diplomatic way of conflict resolution and communicates to Sam that typically, for an unregistered demonstra-
tion such as his, he’s required to file a written permit – in advance. Since the absence of such existed, he is advised to please stop his unannounced demo right now. Sam’s toothless grin appears, and he shakes his blond curls. But he understood. And I feel how my pulse gradually calmed down. My five-yearold daughter watched the show from across the table, with eyes wide open
– in disbelief and probably in search of the reprimand she was expecting – as I typically deal with tantrums in a more organized way. Unnecessary noise bugs me, and my daughter knows that. And she also understands that I occasionally rebel with noise, when it’s getting too loud. We like to joke around and be loud, but at the table there is a ban of anything but organized discourse, as food typically ends as a mess on the floor. My friend Hanna sees such situations in a more relaxed way, perhaps because she has, in relation to the temperament of her son, no choice. Firing back brings her little, so she remains
sophisticated in their educational culture of debate that makes me cringe and more often turn inward when I hear, “Note: Brain to Hand – don’t touch the table, we’re still in negotiations.” The cocoa discussion is not the first time when I notice that something has come between Hanna and me. It is an uncomfortable feeling of alienation caused by our children. When I spot Sam’s lasting delight in stirring things, while I see my daughter suffer, then I have the urge to intervene, within my limitations. But am I allowed, as a friend of his mother? Hanna and I have never explicitly exchanged our thoughts on parenting styles. We go way back, from childless days and being roommates in college, and always had a great connection from the very beginning of our friendship. Our shared evenings have always been an important oasis of calm in our everyday lives. Whatever we discussed, we passionately shared the same view: the job, the man’s world, life, treasures and love. And after our conversations the world was always more peaceful. We looked forward to living with children – as far away as it was then, first with her – two years later with me – and we’ve tried to keep our friendship alive, even with new responsibilities. We walked to the café, cinema, theater, laughing and nodding in the same moments without words and felt a great bond. Only when our children grew older, and we had less and less time to discuss life, but rather the raising of children, I began to sense that here was a whole new side to our friendship. A shared taste in music does not automatically mean that we’d also agree on educational matters. Sorry. After breakfast we sit on the playground. Hanna asked Sam several times to not climb a tower. Now he waved triumphantly from the top of the tower down and shows her so very clearly what he thinks of her ban. My gaze wanders restlessly between Mom and son, back and forth: What will the reaction be, Hanna? She’s usually so consistent. I come to wonder: Does Hanna find the whining of my daughter, who clings to me constantly for protection, annoying? When we’re spending time with Hanna and the children, I often have the feeling of sitting between too many chairs: As a mother I will not only give my daughter the support she needs, but also respond to Sam’s provocations as I think it’s right – with a clear request. At the same time Hanna sees me still
as the casual friend, my daughter’s unnecessary whining just a loose sentence. But who has the say in such a moment: friend or mother? Far too often I would not speak up, but instead remained silent. I pinch. In every respect – and that annoys me. There were previously no taboo subjects between Hanna and me. Perhaps my silence is a mistake. Maybe I should interfere when Sam loudly provokes. How much does our friendship tolerate? Will I violate my limits, if I tell Hannah my honest opinion, and tell her that her son clearly dances on her nose too much? And almost more importantly, how would I handle it if Hanna would criticize my daughter in return for her constant whining and attachment to me? I would probably go straight ahead and defend her – my child is after all a part of me. I never imagined how difficult it can be when one’s own personality suddenly appears in your child – and is twice as vulnerable. Our children experience Hanna and me in two roles: We are friends and we are mothers. It’s a tricky balancing act, between admonitions and bar gossip, jumping back and forth; between apologizing for our second self or rolling on the floor about it – and in the end we still often feel neither we nor the children have become completely fair. The real question is: Do we need this at all? Who says that both of us as mothers have to harmonize as well as we do as friends? That’s the difference between acquaintances from the past and the more recent ones from the time of breast-feeding, crawling, sitting, and sandpit. In these relationships the children are mostly unchallenged in the center. The talks are about growth spurts, teeth and bedtime - and if everything else still fits, it’s beautiful. If not, well ok, then you go your separate ways after the children are in bed. So, gradually it has become that Hanna and I plan our joint ventures increasingly during the child-free time. We have not lost the connection. For this evening, all the more in our discussions: we again passionately exchange views on the job, the man’s world, life itself. A straightforward familiar ‘prechild feeling’ is spreading – and we do well. Our evenings together remain so happy, as does our concrete presence as friends in these moments, way more important than any abstract idea of education. And that helps me stay relaxed during the day, when Sam again engages in provocation. His luck: I like his mother. Summer 2011 | WholeLifestyleMagazine.com | 35
iron-deficiency anemia : advice from a pregnant lady
Article and Recipes by Alisha Guthery-Morse
am in my 7th month of pregnancy and so far so good. That is, unless you count my on-again, off-again antilove affair with anemia. You see, I’ve recently learned that in spite of my many well-intended steps, including acupuncture, iron supplements, pre-natal vitamins, and a diet rich in iron, my iron levels are still too low for childbirth. Although iron deficiency isn’t the only cause of anemia, it certainly plays a role, and I was quite disheartened to learn that I had fallen short of the recommended level. I did feel a little better when I learned through the National Institutes of Health Office of Dietary Supplements (an awkward title for sure, but a wealth of information nonetheless) that iron deficiency is fairly common among women during pregnancy because they require as much as 27mg per day, a significant increase from the normal 18mg per day. Furthermore, not everyone absorbs iron effectively (I think it is safe to conclude that I fall into this camp) and there are several ways in which iron may be blocked from correct absorption in the body. The importance of iron in your body, pregnant or not, is that it is needed to create hemoglobin; without it your red blood cells can’t carry oxygen from the lungs to the rest of the body. It is also interesting to note that there are two types of iron: heme iron and non-heme iron. Heme iron can be obtained through animal sources, like meat, chicken, eggs (particularly red meat, egg yolks, and liver), while non-heme iron sources include dark green leafy vegetables, dried fruit, beans (especially lima beans), lentils, and sea vegetables (particularly arame). For a list of common foods and their iron content please see the “Top Plant Food Iron Sources” chart. In Traditional Chinese Medicine low iron is part of an overall blood deficiency. According to Paul Pitchford in his book - and my food Bible - Healing with Whole Foods: Asian Traditions and Modern Nutrition, there are two approaches to building low iron and blood deficiencies: “increase the digestive absorption of the nutrients, and add those specific nutrients which generate healthy blood.” To do this, one must not only choose the correct blood building foods, like iron, but also be mindful of the rest of the body and how it is functioning. Pitchford goes on to state the specific signs of blood deficiency that one should be aware of, including: “paleness of lips, nail-beds, tongue, and complexion in general, thinness, spots in the field of vision, unusual hair loss, premature graying and thin, dry hair, dry skin, and trembling or numbness in the arms or hands. Disorders associated with blood deficiency are anemia, nervousness, low back pain, and headache”. Being of Irish decent, my complexion is naturally fair, so no big red flag there, but as I write this, I do recall the occasional spot in my vision, some arm numbness, and headaches, particularly in the first trimester. One would imagine that this would trigger something in me, having had so much training on the subject, but because I had never been pregnant before I thought that perhaps 36 | WholeLifestyleMagazine.com | Summer 2011
this was all part of the game. In retrospect, I should have called my naturopath and asked whether this was normal. Still, as previously mentioned, there is that sticky little truth that not everyone absorbs iron effectively. If you are like me, for example, you may need to be aware of not only what your sources of iron are, but also how you cook it and what you are ingesting along with it. For example, I was surprised to learn that certain foods, such as coffee, tea, and milk, can actually have an adverse effect on absorption, while foods sufficient in protein, copper, B vitamins and vitamin C are necessary for proper absorption. Also, cooking in a cast iron pan can help to absorb additional iron, as well as being careful not to over-cook vegetables, as much of the nutrients dissolve in this process. It is also worth mentioning that, in addition to iron, the nutrients most often needed to cure blood deficiencies are folic acid and vitamin B12. Many of these nutrients can be found in iron rich foods naturally – thank goodness! Considering my tendency toward anemia in general, as well as the fact that I am in my last trimester, I am taking the “I would rather be safe than sorry” approach. So, going along with the recommendation of my midwife/naturopath, I have begun to add a little bit of egg and meat into my diet once or twice a week, in addition to taking the Iron and vitamin C tablets once a day. So far my blood work indicates that this is working, but it is still not at the level that we want. I have some time though, and I choose to concentrate on this itty-bitty success and remain hopeful that when it comes time to deliver, all will be fine. I know that I have given you a lot of information here, and believe me, there is so much more where that came from. I further know that much of this can be confusing. So, in an effort to summarize, here are a few key points: • • • • • • •
Spring Salad with Crispy Shallots and Peaches with Fig Balsamic Vinegar On Basil Garlic Toast Serves 4 Salad • 2 c. Spinach • 2 c. Arugula • 1/2 c. sliced red cabbage • 3-4 radishes, sliced julienne • 1 carrot, sliced julienne • 1/4 c. Shaved Parmesan Cheese (Omit for better iron absorption) • 4 halves of dried peach, softened in boiling water and sliced julienne • 2 shallot, sliced half moon • 3 tsp. Fig Balsamic Vinegar • 3 tsp. olive oil • Toasts 4-8 slices of bread (I like a whole wheat baguette sliced on the diagonal) • 1/2 c. chopped fresh basil • 2 cloves of garlic, sliced • Juice from 1/2 lemon • 1/2 c. olive oil • 1 pinch of sea salt Instructions: 1. Toasts Heat broiler on high. Blend ingredients 2-6 in a food processor. spoon 1 Tbl. of basil garlic mixture on each toast. Boil toasts for about a minute, or until edges brown. Set aside. 2. Salad: Heat olive oil to medium/high temp. Add shallots to oil and cook until brown slightly, 2-3 minutes. Remove shallots from heat and add sliced peaches, along with 1 tsp. fig balsamic vinegar. Set aside to cool. 3. Assemble: Mix spinach and arugula together and toss with 2 tsp. olive oil and 2 tsp. fig balsamic vinegar. Place each toast on a plate and top with lettuce and remaining vegetables. Place onion and peach mixture on top and sprinkle with shaved parmesan cheese. Serve immediately.
recipes Blueberry Jam Dots Yields 12-16 cookies • • • • • • •
1 c. Sliced Almonds, divided 1/4 c. Toasted Sesame seeds 1 1/2 c. rolled oats 1/2 tsp. each, cinnamon and ginger 1/8 tsp. sea salt 1/4 c. coconut oil 1/2 c. brown rice syrup
• 1/2 c. Organic blueberry jam Instructions: Preheat oven to 350 degree Grease 1 cookie sheet Total baking time: 15-20 minutes. 1. In a food processor, blend 1/2c of the almonds until it resembles flour, add all other ingredients, except the jam, and blend until the mixture forms into a ball. 2. Using a spoon, spoon out dough and roll into a ball. Place the ball on the cookie sheet and press down in the center with your thumb. 3. Bake for 10 minutes then take the cookies out of the oven and fill the center with jam. Then, Place the cookies back in the oven for an additional 5 minutes, or until the cookies have browned slightly and the jam has set.
Iron deficiency is common amongst pregnant women. Pregnant women need almost twice as much iron as when they are not. Have your health-care professional check for low iron early in your pregnancy. Learn the signs for low iron, anemia, and other blood deficiencies. There are a plethora of iron rich foods. Coffee, tea, and dairy adversely affect the absorption of iron. Protein, copper, B vitamins and vitamin C are all necessary for iron absorption.
Please remember that, as with everything during pregnancy, and beyond, everyone’s needs and preferences are different. If you find yourself in a situation similar to mine, I suggest you work with a health-care professional that you trust and develop a strong plan of action. In the meantime, I have created 3 recipes that will hopefully inspire more attention to iron, and overall health. Summer 2011 | WholeLifestyleMagazine.com | 37
Top Plant Food Iron Source Food
Dinosaur Kale Rustic Veggie Pie with Roasted Red Bell Pepper Compote
Tomato Sauce, canned
Serves 4-6, Crust: Makes 9” round
Hearts of Palm, canned
White Beans, canned
Kidney beans, boiled
Pinto Beans, boiled
Lima Beans, boiled
Swiss Chard, boiled
Sesame Seeds, whole
Cashew Nuts, dry roasted
Pistachio Nuts, dry roasted
• 1/2 tsp Sea Salt • 1/4 c. non-dairy butter (such as Earth Balance) or 1/2 c. Safflower oil • 2 Tbl. – 1/2 c. cold non-dairy milk (I like hemp milk) • Filling: • 2-3 Tbl Safflower oil • 1 small yellow onion, finely diced • 1 c. sliced cremini mushrooms • 1 large bunch Dinosaur Kale, washed well, stems discarded, & finely chopped Sea salt • 4 eggs • 1 c. cold non-dairy milk (I like hemp milk) • 1/2 tsp each dried, oregano, basil, thyme • 2 tsp umeboshi vinegar • Crumb topping: • 1 piece of well-done toast • 1/4 tsp smoked paprika • Roasted Red Bell Pepper Compote: • 1 jar of roasted red bell peppers • 5 sun dried tomatoes, softened by placing in boiling water • 1 heaping Tbl capers Instructions: Preheat oven to 350 degrees Total baking time: 45-50 minutes 1. Crust: Grease pie pan with oil or butter. In a food processor combine all ingredients until the mixture begins to come together and resembles small beads. Take out of food processor and form into a ball. Using a rolling pin, roll out dough into a 9” circle. Place in pie pan and set aside. (Or, for a more rustic look, clumsily place crust inside a casserole dish, beautiful). 2. Filling: In a large bowl, mix together eggs, milk, dried herbs and umeboshi vinegar. Set aside. Meanwhile, heat heavy skillet to medium high, add oil onion and a pinch of sea salt until translucent (about 5 minutes). Add kale to onions and stir a bit, then turn the heat down to low, place a heavy lid on the pan and allow to sit until kale softens slightly (about 3-5 minutes). Mix vegetables and eggs mixture together and pour into prepared pie pan. Place in the oven and bake 30 Minutes. 3. Crumb topping: In a food processor combine bread and smoked paprika; blend until it resembles breadcrumbs. Sprinkle on top of pie after 30 minutes of baking and cook an additional 15 minutes, or until pie is done. 4. Roasted Red Bell Pepper Compote: Place all ingredients in a food processor and blend until it is smooth. Use on top of the vegetable pie - liberally! **Variation: You can easily make this vegan by subbing eggs for 1 lb. tofu. however, keep in mind that tofu inhibits the absorption of iron, so if you are trying to add more iron then stick to the recipe.
38 | WholeLifestyleMagazine.com | Summer 2011
Making Informed Choices When Pregnant and Giving Birth Article by Gena Kirby – Photo by Sabrina Bean Photography
eing pregnant is an exciting time in a woman’s life. Whether it’s your first or third, it brings anticipation, joy, and sometimes fear. As a Doula and childbirth educator, I am constantly surrounded by pregnant women, many of their stories are the same, and some are quite different. What they all have in common is that they want the best for their babies. Nothing compares to the privilege of giving life and the responsibility of that. What that said, it is surprising to find that most women believe they have few options when it comes to birth. Very few women know what their choices are, and fewer are aware of what their rights are. I was telling a friend of mine who teaches prenatal yoga, that I was going to pen an article about Informed Consent. She recommended I refer to it as Informed Choice. I quite agree. Before I talk about choice I want you to know what the AMA says about Informed Consent. According to the American Medical Association, Informed Consent “is more than simply getting a patient to sign a written consent form. It is a process of communication between a patient and physician that results in the patient’s authorization or agreement to undergo a specific medical intervention. In the communications process, you, as the physician providing or performing the treatment and/or procedure (not a delegated representative), should disclose and discuss with your patient: • The patient’s diagnosis, if
known; • The nature and purpose of a proposed treatment or procedure; • The risks and benefits of a proposed treatment or procedure; • Alternatives (regardless of their cost or the extent to which the treatment options are covered by health insurance); • The risks and benefits of the alternative treatment or procedure; and • The risks and benefits of not receiving or undergoing a treatment or procedure. In turn, your patient should have an opportunity to ask questions to elicit a better understanding of the treatment or procedure, so that he or she can make an informed decision to proceed or to refuse a particular course of medical intervention. This communications process or a variation thereof, is both an ethical obligation and a legal requirement spelled out in statutes and case law in all 50 states.”-American Medical Association. So, calling it informed choice works best for me, because when you as a patient are given all of the information you need, you are not consenting to something, you are making a choice. Many new moms shrink from questioning their doctor when it comes to birth, however, upon asking these same women if they would question (and question some more) their doctor if they were diagnosed with a serious illness, or were told they needed an operation, the answer was always yes.
So why treat your pregnancy or your birth any differently? Your baby is counting on you for food, shelter, love and advocacy. No one loves your baby more than you do, so speak up for your baby. Ask questions; don’t be afraid to ask about alternatives, to question procedures, or ask for/about alternative procedures. Your doctor is aware of informed consent and what the AMA says about it, so they won’t be caught off guard by your advocacy for your baby. Taking an independently taught childbirth education class like Lamaze or the Bradley Method to find out more about birth can make all the difference. The more you know ahead of time, the less stress you and your partner are likely to experience on the big day. Hiring a Doula (professional labor assistant) can also be a huge help. A Doula provides continuous emotional and physical support throughout labor. She can not make decisions for you but can help, by letting you know what your options and rights are. Birth day can be a profoundly empowering experience or it can be a scary and scarring, both literally and figuratively, experience. It doesn’t have to be a frightening experience, knowing what your choices are throughout your pregnancy and birth experience can make an important difference. For more information on The Rights of Childbearing Women go to www.childbirthconnection.org. For information on your choices locally go to www.mommymattersonline.com. To access a list of Doulas and Childbirth Educators, log on to centxdoulas.org. Summer 2011 | WholeLifestyleMagazine.com | 39
LEARLY THE NUMBER ONE THING PEOPLE SAY STOPS THEM FROM EATING MORE LOCAL FOOD IS COST. BUT EVEN THOSE ON A TIGHT BUDGET CAN REAP THE BENEFITS (GREAT-TASTING FOOD, SMALLER CARBON FOOTPRINT, A BOOST FOR LOCAL ECONOMY)—HERE A FEW TRICKS THAT’LL HELP YOU GET STARTED:
eating local - on the cheap how to save money and the environment
By Erika Renz / Photograph by Emily Fitzgerald
SEEK OUT THE LATE SHIFT The Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) is a great way to find local, generally well-priced food. But if you really want a bargain, call your CSA’s organizer and request what Paige Hill, Founder of Urban Patchwork Neighborhood Farms, calls the late shift. “Every week there are people who can’t pick up their shares,” she explains. “Whoever is working the drop-off shift usually gets first dibs on the leftovers.” This works for the farmers’ markets, too; you won’t get the goods for free, but at the end of every market day, you could score some tasty bargains. You may have to ask for a discount, but think of it like a garage sale: You want it, they want to sell it, and the later the day gets, the more bargaining power you have. Also be sure to use your Go-Local card: With every purchase (especially at HOPE on east 5th Street), you get some local treats for free, or can score an additional discount. urbanpatchwork.org/ thegolocalcard.com / hopefarmersmarket.org GET TO THE MEAT OF IT Ask around—a lot of CSAs now offer meat, egg, and milk shares. If yours doesn’t, search eatwild.com for a farmer near you who sells animal food products directly to the public. If you have big meat eaters at home, consider “cowpooling,” going in with other families to buy a cow [or bison perhaps]. The farmer will usually butcher and pack it for you (though you should confirm that there aren’t any surprises), and then everyone paying can divide it up. A good source is the Community Renaissance Market, and its vendor David Ernstmeyer, Sales Manager for Green Grass Meats. David is at Community Renaissance Market every Friday afternoon with a great selection of grass fed meat products. communityrenaissancemarket.com. BE OPEN TO NON-CERTIFIED You don’t always have to see the certified organic label to get food that’s still organically grown but often lower priced than certified items. A lot of local small farms don’t have organic certification because the process is costly, but they still farm using organic methods. Because you’re buying from the farmers who grew it, you can just ask about their growing methods. A good starting question: How do they handle pestand weed-control? If they say they spray, you’re probably out of luck. But if they tell you they use natural methods, delve deeper: Do they pair crops that naturally repel each other’s pests? Do they encourage helpful insects like ladybugs and ground beetles? If they’re skilled at these natural methods, chances are they’ll be happy to tell you about it. KNOW PEAKS VS. IN-SEASON Probably one of the most important factors, as this seemingly minor distinction can make all the difference in the price of produce. In-season means the crop is being harvested in your area; peak season means it’s so abundant locally that growers are going to cut prices to sell it faster. Prices drop, and the quality is better, so it’s a win-win for consumers. To find out when prices will drop for peak season, ask the farmers you shop from. They might just tell you whether those tomatoes that are $3 a pound now are going to be half in a few weeks. Or you can check what’s local in your area at any given time at the Natural Resources Defense Council’s website, nrdc.org/ health/foodmiles. If you’re canning or preserving, talk to your farmers and see if anyone will cut you a pre-season bulk deal. It never hurts to ask, and you may just walk away with the season’s best crop at a very sweet price.
Summer 2011 | WholeLifestyleMagazine.com | 41
cancer support if you or a loved one has been diagnosed with cancer
YOU ARE NOT ALONE.
Natural Support for Children’s Allergies, Coughs, and Colds
Friends of Cancer Support Community – Central Texas (CSCCT) is quickly coming together to become a much-needed partner of the Austin and central Texas communities. In November, 2010, Tere Holmes and Kate Cleary met during the filming of a documentary where they told their stories about their own cancer experiences. In the course of friendly conversation, they identified gaps in the cancer support services in central Texas and agreed that community, education and hope are a winning combination in the journey to wellness in the face of a health crisis. While both Tere and Kate are naturally gifted with an optimistic outlook, they recognized a mutual need to help others find that strength. The next step was to ask experienced social worker, Kelli Sureck, to join them in approaching the Cancer Support Community’s national office. The Cancer Support Community is internationally known for providing no cost, high quality emotional and social support online and in person through their more than 50 affiliates and over 100 satellite locations. To their surprise, Tere and Kate learned there is currently no CSC affiliate or satellite in central Texas. So they established Friends of Cancer Support Community – Central Texas, which will soon become an affiliate of Cancer Support Community’s global psychosocial support network. As an affiliate, they will offer free services like support groups, counseling, education and healthy lifestyle programs to anyone whose life has been impacted by cancer. Friends of Cancer Support Community – Central Texas is seeking 100% tax-deductible donations as a nonprofit corporation registered in the State of Texas. As a 501(c)3 organization, Friends of Cancer Support Community – Central Texas is eager to find a physical location and offers naming opportunities to those who make significant contributions to the Community. The founders appreciate any monetary or service donations that can be made to help with the initial organizational phase of Cancer Support Community – Central Texas. Please visit facebook.com/cscct to join our circle of friends, make a donation and find a place for yourself in our community. Contact us via email at: email@example.com
Article by Amy Tyler, ND
ecent studies raising safety concerns about children’s OTC medications, as well as several product recalls, have left parents wondering how they may safely offer relief for common childhood ailments. In January of 2008, the FDA issued a public health advisory recommending that children under 2 years of age should not be given OTC cough and cold medications due to an increased risk of non-allergic side effects such as rapid heart rate and convulsions. There are not any conclusive studies establishing a minimum safe age for these medications, and although these drugs may offer symptom relief, they do not cure the child of the virus or shorten the duration of the illness. Recently, numerous recalls of children’s medications such as Tylenol, Motrin, Benadryl, and Zyrtec have further added to parent’s confusion about the safety of OTC products. Many childhood ailments are self-limited, and respond nicely to rest, hydration, and simple supportive measures. Of course, if a child’s symptoms are more serious such as high fever or difficulty breathing, it is best to seek medical care. Parents are grateful to learn that there are many natural, non-toxic options to support their kids’ immune systems and provide comfort. Recent recalls and safety issues with many children’s OTC medications have prompted parents to seek natural support for their kids’ allergies, coughs, and colds. Parents are pleased to find that offering gentle support in the form of herbs, homeopathy, and nutrition provides their kids comfort and a quicker return to health!
ALLERGIES Home Remedies:
Nettle Tea- Pour 1 cup of boiling water over 1 tbsp of dried nettle leaves, cover, steep for 5 minutes, and strain. Children under age 6 can drink ¼ cup 3 x per day, and kids aged 6-12 years can drink ½ cup 3 x per day. Kids over 12 and adults may drink 1 cup 3x/day. Many kids prefer it sweetened with a small amount of honey. Fresh nettle leaves have fine hairs that sting and cause skin irritation, so use caution if harvesting fresh nettles
D-Hist Jr. by Orthomolecular Products contains ingredients like quercetin, vitamin C, and nettles. It’s designed to stabilize the cells that release histamine, thus decreasing the allergic response.
NutritionEnvironmental allergy symptoms are often worsened by foods such as bananas and dairy, which increase mucous production. In addition many kids have unidentified food allergies or food sensitivities that can increase allergy symptoms; typical culprits include dairy, wheat/gluten, corn, soy, and sugar.
Homeopathic allergy drops by companies such as Complimed and Professional Health Products are available for specific allergens (dust & mold, pet dander, grasses, and trees). Sinus IrrigationOlder children may benefit from sinus rinses such as Pediatric Neil Med, which uses a gentle saline solution to flush pollen, mucous, and debris from the nasal passages. Nasal saline drops and mists are also available for infants and younger children.
COUGH AND COLD: Home Remedies:
Warming Socks- Moisten a pair of cotton socks in cold water, wring them out, then place on feet. Place a pair of wool socks over the cotton socks. Place the child in bed and wrap them in warm blankets. A reflex arc between the head and feet will help to drain congestion from the upper body, and the socks will be hot and dry by morning. For older kids and adults, more dramatic improvements may result from freezing the cotton socks (rinse, wring, freeze) rather than just using cold water.
Children’s Chestal Homeopathic Cough Syrup by Boiron provides support for kids experiencing cough and congestion. Gaiakids Warming Chest Rub is applied topically to the back and chest to help loosen congestion.
Integrative Therapeutics ViraClear Eps 7630 is an herbal extract of Pelargonium sidoides, which has been evaluated in over 20 clinical trials demonstrating it may shorten the duration and Onion & Garlic Syrup- Dice a severity of upper respiratory large red onion and 4 cloves infections. of garlic. Mix the diced onions and garlic with 1 cup Black Elderberry Syrup is a of honey, and let it stand in a time honored herbal remedy covered container for several for respiratory viruses, with days before straining. Use recent studies backing its 1-2 teaspoons to soothe sore efficacy. throats and ease coughs. It is generally recommended to avoid giving honey to children under 2 years old due to the potential of botulism spores.
*This article is intended for informational purposes only, and should not be used for medical diagnosis or treatment. Summer 2011 | WholeLifestyleMagazine.com | 43
how do you strengthen your libido fairy? Article by Ramona Watson
| WholeLifestyleMagazine.com | Summer 2011
o, is it just me, or does every married woman at some point just lose it? I don’t mean having a screaming meltdown at the market where produce is involved. Nor do I mean having a road rage encounter where you actually get out of your car, a la Michael Douglas in Falling Down. What I am talking about is losing, well, your sex drive. Your lust, want or need for sex from your partner. What happens? Does it just leave one day when you’re not paying attention, sort of like a new puppy who escapes by digging a hole under the fence? Or, does it slowly melt away like a glacial iceberg drifting towards the Tropics? Regardless, I woke up one day and found my iceberg had melted completely and the puppy was gone. Recently, I was sent a funny article by the name of The Female Libido Fairy, by Mia Freedman. This is a hysterical telling of the fragile, delicate life of the female libido fairy. “Every time a man lies in bed pretending not to hear a crying child, a female libido fairy dies,” wrote father-of-two Jack Ellis last year in his entry for a competition to find Australia’s Mentally Sexiest Dad. “And you can’t bring her back by tapping together your red dancing shoes and saying, ‘I believe in fairies.’ I know. I’ve tried.” Were truer words ever spoken? Whenever I recount them to women they laugh. And nod. And then they keep nodding until their head falls off (at least, in my internal Monty Python version). The reaction from men is different. They laugh too, but nervously. One man responded by turning pale. “You mean every time I’ve pretended to be asleep is one less time in the future my wife will sleep with me?” He paused as the full horror sunk in. “Oh God, I’m never going to have sex again, am I?” Freedman goes on to say that the male libido fairy is a warrior and not a delicate fragile fairy like the easily demolished females’ fairy. “[The] male libido fairies are not fairies, they are warriors. Almighty superhero warriors, who wear full body armour, wield light sabres and have magic powers
of resilience capable of withstanding virtually any threat. Fatigue, anger, weight gain, hangovers, heartbreak, homelessness, Ebola, low self-esteem… they are immune even to kryptonite and gastro. Stress? Illness? Solitary confinement? Pah. Male libido warriors laugh in the face of such assailants and flick them off like lint.” I disagree. Universally, maybe, most male libidos can take any iceberg that floats their way and stay afloat. However, I argue that there are more Titanic libidos out there than we know. How do I know? Well baby, I am an iceberg. I think there are a lot of men whose fairies are just as delicate as ours. Whose fairies die with lack of touch, attention, and compliments, too. I think we do our male companions a disservice by grouping them in a macho pile to be dismissed because they’ll “get over it.” I’m thinking all of this while I’m lying on my acupuncturist’s table. I’m in a dimly lit room, needles protruding from me like a 40-year-old porcupine. You know, it’s not that I’ve always been an iceberg. I used to be a sex machine, wound up and ready to go. I woke up sexy and went to bed sexy. I was hot baby, and I knew it. So, how am I here, naked on this table, paying to get my mojo back? It’s not just that I am another woman who’s sacrificed her sex drive on the altar of marriage. I think I started losing it before Steve and I even got married. We were already acting like an old married couple. We HAD had great sex. Mind blowing, make you cry amazing sex. We would spend whole afternoons pouring over one another ravenously, and then call in sick to work so we could enjoy more intimacy with one another the next morning. Somehow, slowly, these days became fewer and much farther between, and then we got pregnant. I promise, if you are having trouble having sex with your husband, having a baby is not going to help. Now, you may be thinking I lost interest in my husband because he’s let himself go, this is just not the case. On the contrary, he looks younger and better than he did when we met.
So it’s gotta be me right? We’ve tried counseling and even changed our diets. I run every day now and nothing was working. A coworker of mine suggested I see an acupuncturist locally. After the longest interview I’ve ever had about my health, my acupuncturist Raji (that’s her spiritual name) told me what she thought my problem was. Here’s her quick breakdown. She said my Chi was blocked—Chi, the “life force energy” which runs through the energy channels called meridians. An obstruction in the Chi in these meridians causes blockage in the body, resulting in disease. Acupuncture therefore helps these internal organs and imbalances and improves the energy through an increase in the body’s own chemicals called endorphins. And as we know, endorphins influence the hormones and stimulate the body’s natural healing abilities, as well as promote well-being. So, now I’m lying here naked in the dark trying to unblock myself. Thinking of Raji’s words, about how she said I was overly wound up, with my muscles tightening which leads to stagnation of my flow of chi. She said it caused everything from acne to bloating to failure to orgasm. I was to be unplugged, unblocked and fixed up. I liked this idea better than therapy. At least with this they were treatments and not appointments that may drag out for who knows how long. At least there was a light at the end of my dry spell. I was already on the right track according to Raji, I was already eating right. She did say I should be eating even more (more?) leafy greens, which apparently have been prescribed for gals with blocked up chi for centuries. And I was already running, and practicing yoga, which will help keep the good energy flowing. Then she said before I came back, I should have sex with my husband. Running after three children, while balancing a busy work schedule and trying to fit in a social schedule along with workout routine (yoga) and more meetings, truly isn’t sexy and didn’t make me want to have sex any more than it ever did. I will say though Summer 2011 | WholeLifestyleMagazine.com | 45
First-time parents looking to start a playgroup?
Meet your family’s
www.afamilyvillage.com Third time’s a charm and you need a babysitter co-op?
“You mean every time I’ve pretended to be asleep is one less time my wife will sleep with me?”
46 | WholeLifestyleMagazine.com | Summer 2011
that I did feel I had more energy than I ever did to do these things before, but I still couldn’t perform more than a perfunctory good night kiss before dragging my butt into bed and nodding off. I was, however, sleeping better and having dreams about sex. That was new. In one vivid dream I had a threesome with Zach Galifianakis and the girl who works at Starbucks near my house. What? I said it was a dream, besides there was sex in it and that was something. When I saw Raji again, I confessed that I had failed. She was very encouraging and after another session she said she had much faith in me. So I set off again, this time I felt like a Jedi on a mission. I whispered in my husband’s ear that tonight was the night, and other sweet nothings. I guess I forgot to send out that memo to the children as each of them decided throughout the night to monkey wrench our plans. Without too much detail, I will only say that no one had sex that night. By the time we were alone, we were too stressed and too angry to do anything but fall asleep. I called Raji crying the next day, but she reminded me that I wasn’t alone, that we weren’t the only couples in the world having a hard time connecting between all the things we do as parents. She did say something that stuck with me and maybe it’s because she had been right about everything else up until that point. She reminded me that the Chinese medicine view point on breaking up stagnation is movement, and that if I wanted to have movement, I needed to move. Sex moves chi and orgasms move blood. That made sense. I just had to do it. In order to be close again, we needed to be close again, duh. The next night I MADE it happen, I got my kids shipped off to a good friend’s, I made an amazing dinner in the sexiest dress I could find. I made excuses through the dinner to touch him and compliment HIM, before dessert we were on the floor engaged in passion, very old school style, like we used to be thirteen years ago. We were giggling while cleaning up and putting dishes away. As my husband kissed me, he whispered in my ear “Now, I didn’t get to have the acupuncture appointment, but whatever you are doing baby, works.” Then something magical happened… he opened up to me and really talked to me for the first time in forever. Huh, what a miracle. I touched him, he touched me and we were connected like we hadn’t been in a while—a long while. It’s so obvious, how did I lose sight of this? To get close, we need to be close.
Summer 2011 | WholeLifestyleMagazine.com | 47
Healthy Wealthy & Wise Fair 1st weekend monthly!
Arts & Music Events 2nd weekend monthly!
Natural Family Fun Fair 3rd weekend monthly!
Makers & Bakers Bazaar 4th weekend monthly!
Antiques • Collectibles • Vintage Clothes Local Art & Food • Indoor Farmers Market Coffee Shop • Restaurant • Live Music All Natural Apothecary...and so much more!
Open Wednesday—Sunday 6800 West Gate Blvd, Austin, TX 78745 5 12. 522.6161 o r 512. 827. 8847 www.CommunityRenaissanceMarket.com
pedernales falls state park : a great texas campground the classic family trip, redefined: itâ€™s all play, and no work at the pedernales falls state park.
| WholeLifestyleMagazine.com | Summer 2011
By Lisa Wolkoff - Images by Sabrina Bean Photography
hen you’re a kid, life doesn’t get much better than camping - sleeping in a tent, telling ghost stories by flashlight, roasting marshmallows over the fire. When you’re a parent, you want to spend some times exploring campgrounds in the most breathtaking parts around Austin, such as the Pedernales Falls State Park. ACTIVITIES: Aside from camping, or throwing a picnic, you’re encouraged to go hiking, river swimming, tubing, wading, mountain biking, fishing, bird watching (checklist available), or horseback riding (con: customers must bring their own horses, and no overnight equestrian camping is allowed). CAMPSITES: Facilities include campsites with water and electricity; a sponsored youth group area; hike-in primitive campsites; picnic sites; restrooms with showers; a trailer dump station; 19.8 miles of hiking and mountain biking trails; 10 miles of equestrian trails; and 14 miles of backpacking trails. Be sure to stop by the Texas State Park Store located in the park headquarters building.
The park has a covered bird viewing station with feeders and a drip bath. Food is provided all year. The station can accommodate about 15 people. There is no charge to use the viewing station other than standard park entrance fees. This is a wheelchair accessible facility.
Tou r s e v e r y T h u r s d a y at 8 : 4 5 a m
Pedernales Falls is the park’s main attraction and may be viewed from a scenic overlook at the north end of the park. In this area, the elevation of the river drops about 50 feet over a distance of 3000 feet, and the cascading falls are formed by the flow of water over the tilted, stair-step effect of layered limestone. These river limestones belong to the 300-millionyear-old Marble Falls formation and are part of the southwestern flank of the Llano uplift. These layers of limestone were tilted by the uplift, then eroded long before early Cretaceous seas of the 100-to-120 million years ago covered this part of Texas and deposited sands, gravels, younger limestones, and marine fossils. HISTORY: The Pedernales Falls State Park, about 5200 acres in size, located in Blanco County east of Johnson City, was acquired from private owners in 1970 and was opened to the public in 1971. It is located along the banks of scenic Pedernales River. This area, formerly the Circle Bar Ranch, typifies the Edwards Plateau terrain.
52 | WholeLifestyleMagazine.com | Summer 2011
a culture of inspired learning
P rep f or gr ades w w w . k h abele. or g
Wo lko ff
n escape to the wilderness is unquestionable wondrous, but sometimes you can get away from it all by just leading the kids on a 10-yard journey across the lawn and popping up your tent. Even the simplest backyard campsite provides an instant backdrop for flashlight tag and ghost stories. Add a few lounge chairs and you’re ready for a grown-up garden party, too. Because everyone deserves a night in the great outdoors--even if it’s your own zip code. LAWN PARTY BY DAY -- ENTERTAINING THE TROOPS BY NIGHT Get the whole gang together for an under-the-stars sleepover. Ask guests to bring their own pup tents and sleeping bags.
THE CAMP SITE Dreamer, Naturalist or Techie? Find exotic, safari-style or futuristic encampment gadgets with simple DIY tricks and accessories. Set up a swing-area, tea-party or outdoor lounge to create magical spaces.
SHOW TIME Project a movie onto a sheet hung from a clothesline or a wall and if you don’t have a MovieMate, don’t sweat. Night Games such as Flashlight hide and seek, a moonlit tour or shadow puppetry will turn your backyard excursion into a night to remember.
| WholeLifestyleMagazine.com | Summer 2011
living gluten and dairy free with french cuisine
Article by Chef Alain Braux
what’s eating you? EATING DISORDERS: IT’S NOT ABOUT THE FOOD Written by Lea Peyton Gebhardt
ating Disorders do not discriminate; they are not limited by gender, age, social class, or ethnicity. Individuals suffering from Eating Disorders have severe disturbances in eating behavior (ranging from total restriction to binge eating) coupled with negative or distorted body image. Over exercise, self-induced vomiting, and misuse of laxatives or medications are behaviors typically associated with weight control in Eating Disorders. Poorly understood by most, Eating Disorders are often oversimplified to a basic mathematical equation of eating too much or eating too little with bodyweight being the end result. This linear thinking dismisses the severity of the disease, overlooks the psychological and emotional aspects, and reinforces weight as the measurable outcome. It is important to remember it is not about the food. Eating Disorders are diseases that affect ones physical health, cognition and thinking, feelings and emotions, sociability as well as quality of life. And sometimes, they are paired with anxiety, mood, adjustment or personality disorders, and substance abuse. Unhealthy relationships with food can develop as a response to life stressors. Food is one of the few things we can control without external interference and this is learned at a very young age. When life seems overwhelming for individuals with eating disorders, food becomes the coping mechanism. How much, how little,
| WholeLifestyleMagazine.com | Summer 2011
what, when, and where to eat, represent an individuals’ control that may not be felt, perceived or present in other areas of life. This methodical approach to eating coupled with a fixation on weight control can be all consuming and can take up to 90 percent of waking hours; therefore leaving little time to manage any of life’s other responsibilities. Food and weight become tangible, measurable entities, yet they are merely metaphors for answers to more complex core issues including but not limited to: depression, anxiety, coping, identity, values, relationships, low self-esteem, abuse, or obsessive behavior. We live in a culture where thinness is valued and aggressive food marketing produces conflicting information about which foods are “healthy”, creating the perfect environment to mask emotions behind food control. Eating disorders and the resultant food behavior can ravage the body physically resulting in malnutrition, anemia, muscle wasting, compromised bone health, gastrointestinal function and immunity, and even death. Malnutrition can further compromise any underlying psychological condition and yield mood stabilizing medications ineffective. Remember it is not just about food. Eating Disorders can only effectively be treated with a multidisciplinary team consisting of a physician, psychiatrist, therapist, and dietitian.
onjour—Are you feeding your children fast food fodder daily? Of course not! Most parents know that freshly picked, freshly cooked food is a much better nutritional alternative to the “stuff” they call “fast” food. In my opinion, there is nothing closely related to real food in the Frankenfood created at a lab. Yet I see a lot of otherwise loving and caring parents using this short-cut and avoiding preparing fresh because they think it’s too complicated to cook fresh food from scratch, don’t know how to prepare and cook fresh food, or don’t have the time (or so they think) to prepare things fresh for their family. I do understand. I really do. I see a lot of families where both parents have jobs and are busy with all sorts of extra curriculum through school or adult activities. Some parents are too tired to even think about cooking from scratch. But it is not as difficult or as time-consuming as most people think.
grass-fed meats and free-range chicken, ducks and eggs. I do not believe that we should extract vitamins and minerals out of food to “supplement” nutrients-poor industrialized food lacking them. If we all ate a variety of fresh and good quality food we would not need them. Nature provides all the nutrients we need when grown with love, using old-fashioned or organic methods. I do my best to convince my clients that spending a little extra time and money now on fresh food will most likely avoid much bigger doctors and hospital bills in the future. Doesn’t it make sense to you?
there is nothing closely related to real food in the Frankenfood created at a lab
My name is Alain Braux. I am the Chef-Nutritherapist at the Peoples Pharmacy at Westlake. You might think: “What is a nutritherapist?” It’s a contraction of Nutrition Therapist, a term used in Europe to differentiate a nutritionist who works mostly with food supplements, and a nutritherapist, who works exclusively with food as a healing medium. For example, a naturopath doctor would send me a client suffering from a long list of food allergies. My job is to create a rotation diet of fresh foods full of goodness and avoiding all allergens so that the patient can live a “normal” life. Over the years, I have worked with ADD/ADHD and Autistic children; gluten and dairy-free patients; high blood sugar patients and diabetics, and with people who have weakened immune systems due to severe illnesses. I offer my clients a tasty and varied diet full of healthy proteins, sugars, vitamins and minerals. I recommend they choose locally grown organic fruits and vegetables,
So, please keep in mind that nature generously provides everything you need to keep your children healthy. Isn’t it worth a little extra effort to keep those growing bodies healthy and pink cheeks glowing? Bon Appétit!
Alain Braux is the author of “Living Gluten and Dairy-Free with French Gourmet Food” and “How to Lower your Cholesterol with French Gourmet Food”. Coming later this year: “Healthy Meals on a Happy Meal Budget. How to eat healthy French Gourmet Food on a tight budget.” All publications are available at People’s RX Pharmacy stores, at Book People, or online through amazon.com and various online book-sellers. www.alainbraux.com 512.327.8868
firstname.lastname@example.org Summer 2011 | WholeLifestyleMagazine.com | 57
“HEALTHY MEALS DON’T COME IN BOXES. PERIOD.” - Lene Saint-Orens, Founder, Hero Fit
hen speaking of the bold, life-makeover program Hero Fit, there are two oft-used expressions that come to mind: One is that every journey begins with a single step, and the other, it’s not the destination but the journey that is more worthy of the two. Hero Fit is a program of Lene Saint-Oren’s Whole Kids Adventure and dares to take on the challenge of teaching a family how to live a more healthy lifestyle. A dedicated group of local experts teaches the Hero Fit family about the importance of nutritious foods; not just that you should eat them, but how to grow them and prepare them in the kitchen, and also how to turn that food into fitness by incorporating exercise into their daily lives. The first Hero Fit family (Maurice, Tiffany, and son Jalen) took that first step on April 1st and have been moving forward every since. For the last month they’ve been working out under the watchful eye and motivate guidance of personal trainer Mo, from Coach Mo’s Elite Fitness. They were “raided” by the Hero Fit Food Police (Lene-who is an absolute stickler when it comes to organic, wholesome foods) on the second week of the program. They’ve participated in culinary challenges designed to teach them how to cook more wholesomely and they’ve learned about activities that they can do as a family that are not only fun but also health inducing. Every health program needs a way to measure progress: The dreaded Weigh-In. Our family stepped on the scale for their first family weigh-in on April 27th. Although they were nervous they knew they were taking the right steps. The verdict? The family lost 31lbs in just a few short weeks! It’s been a busy start to the program, which last 3 months. But when they are finished, Maurice and Tiffany will have all of the tools they need to continue on their journey of healthy living.
Hero Fit: The Hero’s Journey Begins
For more information about our partners, families or the program, please visit www.herofit.org and fan us at www. facebook.com/HeroFitAustin
Article by Brent King // Photographs by Lene Saint-Orens Summer 2011 | WholeLifestyleMagazine.com | 59
“Creating an environment for the students who have a hard time staying active, and slowly seeing the changes in their fitness level and health, is the most rewarding experience”
LET’S GET PHYSICAL
Based out of Austin, Texas, this company is getting some pretty big buzz. Created by Infinity Mark’s Matt Gooding, the company recently launched at SXSW. The Bandromeda mantra is, “If we let them build it, they will come,” says Gooding.
meet hero fit trainer andco-founder Maurice Harris By Michael Quist
aurice Harris, or better known in his community as Coach Mo’, is a former athlete, who played football for Texas A&M before he started his own business as personal trainer in Houston. He moved to Austin in 2008, to expand the business and create his unique brand as Coach Mo’s Elite Fitness. During the fall of 2009, Coach Mo began training youth at LBJ High School in Austin through a unique partnership with Communities in Schools, an enriching program sponsored by Matthew McConaughey’s j.k. Livin’ foundation. “Creating an environment for the students who have a hard time staying active, and slowly seeing the changes in their fitness level and health, is the most rewarding experience” he says. “I can’t imagine not being able to give back to my students, who show up consistently every week to get away for an hour, and bond with each other a game of Fitness Tag.” Coach Mo also works with the Boys & Girls Clubs of the Austin Area, offering services at numerous middle and high schools. His work with the Boys & Girls Club will expand this summer, to include two additional Boys and Girls Clubs neighborhood sites. The 60 | WholeLifestyleMagazine.com | Summer 2011
Okay, music lovin’ Austinites, grab your laptops and chai lattes and prepare to launch the hottest new website on the “internets.” The site is called Bandromeda - a new dynamic social space where bands interact with their fans. What does the name mean? The name Bandromeda is an allusion to the Galaxy, Andromeda. While Andromeda is a cluster of heavenly stars, Bandromeda is a collection of worldly stars = MUSICIANS.
LOVE programs at the LBJ High School Boys & Girls Club target obese youth, and are customized to increase the students physical activity while decreasing BMI in overweight participants. Though play, simple steps are created towards a healthier tomorrow. The group is one of the largest programs at LBJ’s Boys & Girls Club, with over 15 participants per any given class. Aside from his work with students, and training anyone from athletes to mom’s at his studio, he also runs a boot camp on week-days, serving approximately 15 participants, and offering one-on-one training to highprofile corporate clients, such as Luci Baines Johnson, and her office staff. He is also the co-founder of Hero Fit, a newly created program under the
Whole Kids Adventure umbrella, whose goal it is to make-over families lives by providing explicit tools to families interested in resetting their goals and reshaping their lives. He spends exclusive time with enrolled families to train at their home or his gym, and encourages them to keep motivated. His workouts are challenging, but never over-bearing, and from what we’ve heard, the Hero Fit participants are eager to get to their workout routine. When he’s not training at his studio or working with families or students, he enjoys spending time with his family and daughter. Visit coachmofitness.com for more information or herofit.org to find more information about the Hero Fit workout routines and families.
Membership is free. Being registered with Bandromeda allows the artist to post information on the band/artist, plus music, bios, photos, tour dates, news and videos. For $250.00 bands can have their own custom site that still resides in the Bandromeda space, but that to which they can point their own domain – giving them the powerful
advantage of having independent branding within a growing social community. In other words, there are no Myspace or Reverbnation logos plastered all over their site. These are gorgeous custom websites, not templates, so the sky’s the limit. Bandromeda allows artists to create and display their own designs, page layouts, merchandise, their own content, their own ANYTHING. This is crucial because it gives them the ability to enjoy an independent marketing presence while leveraging the power of belonging to a growing social community. Bandromeda has recently partnered with Watchitoo in the launching of b-LIVE – a new service that enables bands to stream live content to their Bandromeda page and bring their fans smack dab into the creative process while earning money doing so. How? Fans can join the artist’s rehearsals, recording sessions, performances and video chat sessions and earn points along the way. Points are also earned by referring friends to Bandromeda and posting comments on other’s pages. This is an extremely interactive and dynamic platform that gives artists the opportunity to express themselves from a visual perspective as well as musically. DO YOU LIKE CASH? The first 10,000 members to earn 20,000 points on the site will become eligible to win some MAJOR buckaroos. Bandromeda is giving away ONE MILLION DOLLARS to one lucky member and $10,000 to 100 members. This comes to a grand total of $2,000,000 in cash prizes! What’s the website again, you ask? www.Bandromeda.com Article by AK Ray
Summer 2011 | WholeLifestyleMagazine.com | 61
fter a childhood filled with evenings listening to his mother playing folk songs by Joan Baez and Peter Paul and Mary on the guitar, and having a trumpet-playing father, it’s hard to imagine Nano Whitman not becoming a musician. I met with Nano on a gorgeous morning on the back patio of Home Slice Pizza in the South Congress district of Austin. Over a cappuccino (yes, you can get a good cappuccino at Home Slice), we talked about his past, his music, his band, and how there’s nothing like a good cover song. Before meeting with Nano, I made sure to listen to as much of his music as I could. His music, to me, is very human. His lyrics are witty and wise, in a way that when you hear them, you can instantly relate to them. I was interested in meeting the person who wrote the lyrics to the song “28,” a candid portrayal of complicated family relationships. Whitman’s song “28” won first prize in the 2010 Billboard World Song Contest for Americana/Folk. The first time I heard that song, I cried. Now, after meeting Nano and knowing more about the characters in the song, it moves me even more. I asked him how his parents feel about that song. He said it was pretty rough for them at first, but they’ve since come around to having their lives on display with a lyricist musician as a son. Nano’s reasons for coming to Austin in the first place were tied up in the familial expectations of a Harvard grad. This of course led us to a discussion on success, its definition and the acquisition of it. Nano said his idea of success first changed after getting to know a coworker, who in her thirties seemed to have it made. He told me how she would wake up, walk her dog, do yoga, knit, and go to work. She was happy, she did what she loved to do, her life was simple and good. “How is that not success?” Good question – a better question it seemed was how to explain that to his parents. He needed a place to explore the idea of success being one of loving what you do. New York and L.A., while better for his music, would be more of a distraction. So Austin, the live music capital of the world, it was. Austin was welcoming, and a nurturing place to live. After 9 months of decompressing and doing exactly what he wanted to do, he got a glimpse of what success really is. Following the family tradition in medicine wasn’t necessarily the only path to happiness. “Well, my dad and my brother, and everyone in my family are doctors – and the human body is as magnificent
Article by Gena Kirby || Images by Todd V. Wolfson
| WholeLifestyleMagazine.com | Summer 2011
as the world of music, but I don’t ever want to do anything else.” I asked when he first had an inclination that the physician route may not be for him. When he was twelve years old he was in the Philadelphia Boys Choir. They traveled to Australia and performed in the Sydney Opera House. “Here we were, 100 boys singing at an incredibly high level, I would cry as a kid doing that, I could feel the surge of feelings that evoked.” Couple that with the boy’s choir also having had the opportunity to back up Luciano Pavarotti at the Philadelphia Academy of music. “I was twelve years old, you know, I wasn’t going to do anything else after that, I was done. I just wanted to go out and have experiences like that. Singing in harmony with people, you can take everything else, that’s all I need.” What’s the coolest thing he’s done lately? Last fall Nano spent two months in Los Angeles as one of 14 writers chosen to attend ASCAP’s “Lester Sill Songwriter Workshop.” He will spend time this spring in L.A. fostering the relationships he founded there. He said, “It’s fun to say I live in Austin when I’m in L.A.” He will be playing at different venues in L.A. and San Francisco until June, when he’ll return to Texas. Asked if he had a set playlist and if he played covers, he said he always plays “28” in every show. “Shane and I used to love to sing ‘Hallelujah’ together. Now we cover Murder in the City, a song by The Avett Brothers. Doing a cover, you have to make it your own. I like playing covers, it can be challenging sometimes, it doesn’t always work out. I really love covering other Austin musicians. I think it’s important that we cover our friends’ work. How cool is it when this guy is playing my songs and I’m playing his songs?” The themes for his songs seem to be personal, about relationships, often times familial, certainly romantic. “The key things for me are the personal elements. I feel most effective on a personal level – having a conversation with a friend or a family member. I’ve done service in my life – I’ve spent three summers in Africa. But I value the personal relationships I’ve made more than the idea that I made a difference somehow through my service. I’m just trying to get at the heart of relationships. The way our intentions can be misconstrued, and all of the boundaries and barriers to love, even though we don’t want them to be there.” I’m interested to see where Nano’s success will lead him in the future, for now I’m happy listening to his work and looking forward to seeing him perform live around Austin. Pick up his latest CD “I Leave On the Light” at Waterloo Records. www. nanowhitman.com
“Singing in harmony with people, you can take everything else, that’s all I need.”
worth it Written by AK Ray // Photography by Steve Vaccariello
exas born and bred singer songwriter Patricia Vonne has proven herself a truly transcendent musical artist. One of 10 children, Vonne’s creative and loving family nurtured her musical talents from a very young age. “I am very grateful to my parents, who always encouraged music in the house,” Vonne states. Her mom instilled in them at an early age a harmonic sense and a love of music. She would pull out her Spanish guitar and have the kids sing along to her favorite Mexican folksongs. “No wonder we were known as the Mexican Von Trapp family singers,” says Vonne. Patricia Vonne’s mother always emphasized that if you write your own material, then you will have more power and longevity as an artist. This is why Vonne loves writing and performing her own songs. In addition to providing career advice, her mother taught her how to play castanets. Vonne’s father also did his part to instill a love of music in her life. As a drummer who put him-
self through college on a music scholarship, he could not help but share his passion with his daughter. “He took me to see one of my very first live concerts, Johnny Reno and the Sax Maniacs! That experience was deeply influential in my life. To see Reno own the stage and reach the people left an indelible mark. I am forever grateful to my parents for sharing their passion of music and for their support on my musical journey.” Vonne lived in New York City from 1990-2000 and started her band there. In 2001 she moved back to her native Texas and never looked back. The music capital of the world seemed like the next best thing to a city like New York. “I love the arts and culture community here, highlighted by the great music scene. From museums, ballet, opera, Austin City Limits, SXSW, the state capital to a hot rod round up, the inspiration to write songs is endless for me here,” she shares. SXSW has allowed Vonne the opportunity to represent Texas by touring overseas from Japan to Lithuania.
She has found the audiences abroad to be generous and receptive, and their enthusiasm keeps her on her toes to write new material on every tour. Vonne is currently writing her fifth album to follow up her latest CD, “Worth It,” which was just released in the UK. “Being able to share my music with an audience is very gratifying to me. If the audience leaves feeling inspired or moved like I was, seeing live music as a child, then that makes it all worth it.” As an experienced real estate agent she’s supporting worthy causes such as Whole Kids Adventure, when she’s not touring with her band, or working on new creative projects.
Download her iPhone app: www.patriciavonne.com/iphone.html “Worth It” now available on ITunes, CDBaby + Waterloo Records in Austin. Need a Real Estate agent? Contact: www.austinmusicrealty.com Summer 2011 | WholeLifestyleMagazine.com | 65
old settler’s music festival RECAP 2011
S B AL L E T A U S T I N ’ S B UTLER C OM M UN ITY SC HO O L
Dance & Fitness For Everyone.
All ages and skill levels welcome. n n n n n n
Ballet Conditioning Hip Hop Hula Jazz Modern
n n n n n n
Tap Theatre Dance Yoga Zumba® Kid’s Classes And More!
Call 512.476.9051, www.balletaustin.org 501 West 3rd Street
pringtime in Central Texas was made for music festivals, sunshine, and family fun. The Old Settler’s Music Festival provided plenty of each as the event celebrated its 24th anniversary in Driftwood, TX, with a wide array of musical artists and enthusiastic fans. The festival has evolved over the years, expanding beyond its traditional bluegrass roots into an eclectic mix of musical styles and performers. This year’s festival featured headliners Sam Bush and Grupo Fantasma, as well as some local talent to complement the impressive list of bluegrass and Americana artists from all over the country. A multitude of children’s activities made the event a perfect environment for a family outing, as either a day trip or a full weekend of camping and playing. For those who are so inclined, camping is made available right across the road with a regular shuttle bus route. The festival grounds activities included a carnival-style ride and large inflatable moonwalks, with unlimited rides for the kids all day. I witnessed many joyful patrons finish a ride and get right back in line for another turn. An adjacent booth offered face painting and crafts, while another area featured a bungee trampoline for those who are big enough. A petting zoo was available for the kids who wanted to see some farm animals up close. The entire children’s area was situated off to the side of the smaller Bluebonnet Stage, allowing parents the opportunity to listen to some outstanding performances while keeping an eye on their little ones nearby. One such artist was local singer Sahara Smith, who dazzled an appreciative crowd filling the natural amphitheater shape of the grassy hillside. Her smooth voice and accomplished songwriting drew considerable applause as she played a song about coming home to Austin. She, Suzanna Choffel, and Ruby Jane provided an impressive representation of the famous Austin music scene for festival attendees. Smith was followed later on the Bluebonnet Stage by The Bridge, an electric rock band out of Baltimore with a penchant for jamming. After the sun went down Beatlegras took the stage, a group of talented musicians that re-interpret the prodigious song catalog of the Beatles in a kind of bluegrass tribute. With some jazzy arrangements and tight vocal harmonies, they had the audience singing along to tunes they knew, but perhaps had never heard played in such fashion. Tim O’Brien and his band performed a set of songs on the main Hill Country Stage from his new solo release “Chicken & Egg,” a blend of Americana folk and traditional bluegrass songs with his distinctive lyrical style. During the set he talked about his late father, as he performed two songs that were written for him. Fiddle master Stuart Duncan joined O’Brien and
provided jaw-dropping solos, while Bryan Sutton handled the acoustic guitar duties. The legendary Sam Bush appeared later to stir up the crowd with his newgrass-infused set, and Richard Thompson finished off his main stage performance with an inspiring version of “1952 Vincent Black Lightning.” Austin locals the Gourds closed out the Bluebonnet Stage before the crowd made their way back to the campground.
The overall vibe of the Old Settler’s Music Festival is one of comfort, family, and a genuine appreciation for all kinds of roots-influenced music. Compared to other large festivals with multiple stage and overflowing crowds, this was a refreshing and relaxed atmosphere that could hardly have been better. One could easily wander from one stage to another, scope out some rising talent or musical workshop at the indoor Discovery Stage, or check out the ample vendors selling food, clothing, art, and other items. The attention to details for a family-friendly event made it a huge hit with the younger fans as well as their parents, with a perfect blend of good music and fun. oldsettlersmusicfest.org
THE SELF-WORTH PROJECT Article by Henci Gaskin
Have you ever been bullied? Have you ever been made to feel unloved, unconfident, incapable, unloveable, or invisible? Is there something about you know one knows about that you feel ashamed of? If you answered yes to any of these questions, you are not alone. That is the idea behind The Self Worth Project. John Bradshaw says in his book HEALING THE SHAME THAT BINDS YOU that it [shame] ”loves darkness and secretiveness. It is the dark secret aspect of shame, which has evaded our study.
ecause toxic shame stays in hiding and covers itself up, we have to track it down by learning to recognize its many faces and its many distracting behavioral cover-ups.” Photographer Tommy Corey is doing just that by taking our fears, our shame and insecurities out of our respective closets and dragging them into the light. The Self Worth Project was created by 23-year-old photographer Corey, of Redding, California. What drove him to such a creative and moving project? He said it was the death of his dear friend who committed suicide in 2010, and subsequently the alarming number of deaths that followed that same year of teens committing suicide due to bullying. Corey amazingly created a project that provides people a safe and powerful platform that simply reveals: we are all the same. His subjects have found cathartic revelations during shoots with Corey. In Corey’s own words, “The purpose of the The Self Worth Project is to make people aware that we are all human and we all have insecurities. One of the goals of The Self-Worth Project is to open up more conversations about the increasingly hostile environment in schools today. Whether young people have felt bullied, ostracized, or ridiculed, SWP would like to recognize that this kind of derisive, and sometimes violent, behavior amongst youth is a growing problem. And while ending bullying would be ideal, the important message of finding help, feeling supported, and not being alone is imperative.” I had the opportunity to speak with some of the folks
that took part in the project. I was deeply moved by the genuine love and affection they felt towards Corey who had provided them with the opportunity to share with others and help them discover more about themselves. In the light of day their demons, fears and insecurities had little or less power over them. His photography is stunning and you can feel that he loves his subjects very much. I spoke with a young woman who Corey photographed in a cemetery. In the photograph she is smiling and holding a bouquet of balloons. On her body are written the words, PRETENDING I’M OKAY. This young woman unexpectedly lost two family members in a short period of time. First, she lost her 18-year-old little brother to a car accident, then shortly thereafter, her mother passed away. She said afterwards friends and family would comment on her strength and wonder how she could keep it “together”. She said she felt as if she were playing a part and that
in reality, she was falling apart. The words written on her body tell the story of quiet suffering, of pretending that things are okay, when they genuinely are not, how could they be in the face of such loss? She shared with me that doing the project was freeing. She felt as though it allowed her to say, “I’m not okay. It let people who know her realize that she was fragile and being human brought her closer to her friends and family. The most helpful things that happened to her since have been the messages she gets now from strangers that “get it”. She feels now that she can be “real” and stop pretending. Corey’s work speaks for itself and continues to track down shame and its many faces and its many distracting behavioral cover-ups, and drag them into the light. The Self Worth Project continues to touch lives and will hopefully be seen in Austin soon. Look for Corey on Facebook under THE SELF WORTH PROJECT.
uth Glendinning and Susan Buhrman, business partners in Community Renaissance Market LLC, have taken an empty eye-sore of a building and turned it into a flourishing addition to the community. It’s a place where everybody can unpack their dreams and work in a supportive community to bring them to life. As Buhrman says, “At Community Renaissance Market, you are in business for yourself, not by yourself.” The idea to take an empty big-box space and turn it into a thriving marketplace for entrepreneurs has caught national attention, and plans are underway to replicate this business model in other areas of the country. The idea of turning a former 60,000-square-foot Albertsons grocery store in South Austin into a micro-business incubator for fledgling entrepreneurs took root in early 2009. It really began to flourish in August 2009 when Ruth and Susan received full management authority for the property and, with the help of Tribe Creative Agency, the project was rebranded Community Renaissance Market, reflecting the partners’ commitment to community. By keeping the rent low & costs manageable, new entrepreneurs have a chance to learn about their market, work with fellow business owners and organically grow into their success. If the full-time commitment is a barrier, there is the option to pay a daily fee for those who only work during the weekend or at special events. Currently, CRM contains 40+ businesses, an accessible technology training and placement program for people with disabilities, and an apprentice training program for foster children ages 18-22 as part of Foster Apprentice Training Enterprises. Recent additions include a coffee bar featuring Texas Coffee Traders coffee and baked goods from in-house bakers Objects of Confection, Sugar Tooth Bakery [vegan, some gluten free], CakeMaker 3000 and other local providers; Native Nom Nom restaurant will open mid-May 2011, and an indoor farmers market is in development. To better reflect the purpose of CRM to incubate businesses which meet the criteria of ‘Sustainable Local Organic Work’, they have begun the trademark process for the “SLOW Tech Incubator™” concept in which businesses are positioned for sustainable success since they reflect the local community needs. “Part of our job is educating people about the actions you need to take
community renaissance market creates unique community space
and what to do to be a successful business owner,” Ruth said. “One of the most important parts of maintaining a micro-business is education about the process.” Glendinning and Buhrman strive to create alliances with nonprofits such as Foundation Communities, a local organization that provides individuals with affordable housing and financial education through its tax preparation program and business education, and Eastside Community Connection, which has a clothes collection box in the market’s lobby. Community Renaissance Market has been profiled in Community Impact News; Austin Business Journal; News 8; Channel 24 News; ABC World News with Diane Sawyer; an upcoming “Entrepreneur” series on KLRU/PBS; and will be featured on a reality show filming in June 2011 and expected to air during the fall of 2011. Even during this economic downturn, CRM is succeeding. They are revitalizing an old building, creating community and, most importantly, are positioning more people for a sustainable financial future. To learn more about Community Renaissance Market go to: www. communityrenaissancemarket.com Summer 2011 | WholeLifestyleMagazine.com | 71
Respect is taught in schools – respect your teachers, your parents, and each other. I don’t recall their making a big deal out of respecting us, the children. Adults think respect should be demanded. My teachers and parents certainly did. But genuine cooperation cannot be demanded – it can only be earned, and must be given freely. When children feel respected, they want to cooperate. What kind of adults do we want our children to become? What does our society need most? Independent, creative thinkers, or people who simply do as they’re told? People who have been dominated from an early age learn to dominate others when they get the chance, while people who are happy about whom they are and have self-respect, will have respect for others. Unschooling is based on the idea of faith. Not religious faith, but having faith that your children will learn what they need to. That sounds strange, doesn’t it? Or does it? A friend once asked my husband, “How will she learn what she needs to learn?” My husband responded, “For what?” She seemed thrown off a bit. “How,”
unschooling RADICAL CONCEPT OR AN UNEXPECTED HOMECOMING?
Article By Gena Kirby || Images by Sabrina Bean Photography
ur decision to take my 7-year-old daughter out of school was an easy decision to make in the end. It wasn’t, however, such an easy decision for my family to take, much less understand. “How will she get into college?” “She’ll never learn anything!” All of the voices coming at my husband and I were filled with fear. I will admit at first I was afraid, I was filled with dread that this decision would hurt our child. So how does one come to a place where taking their child out of school suddenly makes sense? It really started three years ago. As the host of a Progressive Parenting radio show we cover a lot of different topics that normally aren’t discussed by the mainstream media: things like circumcision, breastfeeding in public, gender bias and the sexualization of our children by corporations. We decided to dedicate a month to education, and started researching parents’ choices when it came to schooling their children. We focused on some of the different types of schools parents could select: Reggio 72 | WholeLifestyleMagazine.com | Summer 2011
Amelia, Montessori, Waldorf Schools and Homeschooling. It was during our show on homeschooling that we heard the term “unschooling” for the first time. After that show we started researching unschooling. How was it different? It was described to us as homeschooling without a curriculum. No curriculum? How will our kids learn anything? I’m not equipped to be a teacher, I don’t have a degree in education! How could a parent begin to tackle this? Then we scheduled interviews with Sandra Dodd and Dana Martin, two women who have been described as radical unschoolers. After talking to both of these women separately, I found very little that was radical about them. They were both easy going intelligent women who made a decision to bring up their children. They both started to make quite a bit of sense. Dana talked to me mainly about three things in our first of many interviews: freedom, respect and trust. The following is a quote from the Unschooling Unmanual: “When we do something by choice, we can be creative about it or give it our best effort. If we chose to do something, we
can enjoy it. Feeling coerced to do something is a sure way to take the fun out of it. The school system is based on making children do things, molding and conditioning them to behave in certain ways. Children “have to” go to school, they “have to” stay in the classroom and they “have to” listen to the teacher. This approach interferes with learning, because we learn best what we are interested in at the moment. The desire to learn must come from within; forcing children to listen won’t make them learn. The use of tests and grades compels students to memorize, at least temporarily, what the teacher has told them. This way it may seem as though the children are learning; in fact they’re only learning how to take tests.”
he asked her, “do you know that your son is learning what he needs to know for what he will do?” Our friend was stumped and really didn’t know what to say. There is a certain amount of trust that has to happen. The same trust that we have in our baby: that she will learn how to crawl, that she will eventually learn those first words. Eventually is the key word here. As parents of an infant, most of us are not in a big hurry to teach our baby grammar or diction. Mostly our infants learn by seeing and hearing. Soon, before we know it they are babbling, then before we know it they are talking! However, we lose this trust that our children will learn what they need to when they need to. Our babies do not learn how to talk or crawl because we give them grades or rewards. They do so because they see it and are interested and do it of their own
volition. Learning for our older children is the same. The problem, or hard part, is getting over that idea ourselves. For me, the decision was as simple as the realization that education is natural for children who are happy and curious, and they will find their own way to learn exactly what they need to know. There’s no way to share all there is about unschooling in just one article, so for now I will leave you with a quote and some frequently asked questions. “I am beginning to suspect all elaborate and special systems of education. They seem to me to be built up on the supposition that every child is a kind of idiot who must be taught to think. Whereas, if the child were left to himself, he will think more and better, if less showily. Let him go and come freely, let him touch real things and combine his impressions for himself, instead of sitting indoors at a little
round table, while a sweet-voiced teacher suggests that he build a stone wall with his wooden blocks, or make a rainbow out of strips of colored paper, or plant straw trees in bead flowerpots. Such teaching fills the mind with artificial associations that must be got rid of, before the child can develop independent ideas of actual experiences.” (Helen Keller, The Story of My Life, 1902)
Answers to Frequently Asked Questions: - Yes, it’s legal. (In all 50 states) - No, it’s not homeschooling (selfdirected learning). - Yes, they’re socialized. - No, they are not all geniuses. - Yes, they get jobs without a diploma. - Yes, they get into college. Find out more at: www.naturalchild.org www.sandradodd.com www.daynamartin.com www.lifelearningmagazine.com www.progressiveparentingradio.com Summer 2011 | WholeLifestyleMagazine.com | 73
email@example.com Austin, TX www.sabrinabeanphotography.com
74 | WholeLifestyleMagazine.com | Summer 2011
February/March 2011 | WholeLifestyleMagazine.com | 00
Whole Kids Lifestyle - Sumer 2011