Last Saturday, my sister Cerridwen graduated from law school at Otago University. I am so grateful that I was able to be a part such a momentous achievement in her life. The day was spent with family and was a day full of laughter, love, sun and food. I feel so blessed to have such an awesome family.
Cerridwen has tackled many hurdles over the past four years, these hurdles are her stories to tell, but what I can say is that she has navigated her way through these bumps in a non-wavering dedicated and studious manner, always keeping her morals intact. As a result she has blossomed in to one of the most beautiful and vibrant young women I know. I’m so full of gratitude to have her as one of my sisters!
There is 15 years age difference between Cerridwen and I (I’m the oldest and Cerridwen is the second youngest). When mum sat my sister Annie, our brother Toby and I down a year after she had remarried to tell us that her and John were planning to have a baby, well I was not impressed. There was going to be a screaming baby in the house. Not on my watch I said!
However, the day she was born, everything changed. We went from being a volatile blended family to all having a mutual love for this beautiful creature that had come into our lives. It was love at first sight and has been that way ever since.
Less than two years later our other sister Charlotte joined us and shortly after that I moved overseas and have never permanently returned. It broke my heart leaving them behind, and each time I came home, I had to grieve for the memory of how I remembered them and readjust to them in a new stage of their lives.
Life is a beautiful thing and it’s been such a pleasure for me to be able to watch Cerridwen grow from the moment she was born (yes I was present at her birth!), up till this present day, to see her graduate on Saturday, knowing how hard she has worked, was very exciting and emotional.
The future is bright and full of possibilities, and I am so excited about seeing how her future unfolds.
Until next time….
Love Lili x
I LOVE almond butter. I love it so much I once had to ban it from my cupboard because I would eat a jar in one sitting. By the spoonful! This was my indulgence when I gave up sugar for the first time.
I’m hoping now, that by going through the slightly more onerous task of making it myself, that I can control this yummy love affair.
Almond butter is a healthier alternative to peanut butter. Peanuts are actually a legume and can be quite acidic. Whereas almonds are rich in vitamin E, calcium, magnesium and potassium and are a good source of protein and fiber. They are also known to alkalise the body.
This recipe is really simple and only three ingredients are required:
6. At this stage, add a splash of olive oil and some salt to taste.
7. Blend some more and then keep adding oil and salt until you have your desired consistency. Easy peasy!
You can enjoy this nut butter as a spread on toast, mixed in with yoghurt, as a substitute for any recipe requiring peanut butter or if you are after a quick energy hit, by the spoonful.
Love Lili x
This article from Mind Body Green has just come through on my newsfeed and it is so appropriate to the activities of the past week since being home in NZ.
I discovered Kundalini yoga while in Rishikesh, India earlier this year. After practicing it daily for a week with our beautiful teacher Lauren Levine, I felt like a shadow of my former self. This yoga is mind blowingly awesome! Kundalini pushes all your boundaries using mantras, asana, meditation, pranayama, sound and dancing. The effect of these tools leaves you with the deepest sense of joy.
However, the reason this article resonated with me, is that my step father John has been home for the past few weeks recovering from major surgery on his spine. Being a staunch family provider and man about the house, I know that this surgery has forced him to take a step back and be vulnerable.
He has embraced this change and has been treating his recovery as a holiday rather than recovery. What has thrilled me the most though, is that for the past few days, John has joined my mama and I for a daily kundalini practice. Each morning we gather together and chant the opening mantra and then do 20 minutes of pranayama followed by meditation and the closing mantra.
Pranayama is a series of breathing exercises which promote proper breathing to supply our bodies and its various organs with oxygen vital for our health. It is good for eliminating waste products and toxins from our body and it is also believed that these techniques can help the prevention of major diseases and cure minor illnesses.
All of us are enjoying the discipline of this daily practice. The practice is energising, detoxifying and sets us up for the day. Each morning we invite John to stay on and do some more with us, but he quietly declines with a smile on his face and gets on with the rest of his holiday.
Until next time, keep breathing.
Love Lili x
First stop is home in a beautiful part of the world. Purakanui, half an hour drive outside of Dunedin in New Zealand.
Leaving behind a dynamic job, amazing friends and the warm weather and buzz of Sydney, it felt like entering a time warp when I first arrived in Dunedin (being 13 degrees didn’t help either!). Not much changes in this city. My sister Cerridwen drove me home from the airport, and echoed these same words that I was, at that moment thinking.
The original plan was to stay here till early February. But I will be honest, I’ve had moments of doubt and anxiety about whether I’m doing the right thing. I’m the oldest of five children and having lived way from home for over 19 years, I’m used to coming home to a bustling household. This time round, everyone else has started to spread their wings and I’m the only one living at home with who we all affectionately call Mungee and Poppa John (names from the grandkids).
However, being out in Purakanui at the family home and property is a micro climate of it’s own. A little piece of paradise. Our property is so self sufficient that I didn’t leave the property for three whole days!! And I didn’t want to! Everything I needed was right here. Great coffee, an abundance of veggies growing in the garden, visitors from various family members. And 30 acres of land to roll out my yoga mat and work through any style of yoga my body desired, with the soundtrack of the birds to keep me company.
Having recently gone sugar and gluten free, I’ve been loving having the time to experiment in the kitchen making organic and wholesome foods. I’ve decided I’m going to spend the next few weeks honing my farm girl and domestic goddess skills.
Hits so far have been a variety of soups (being able to pick the ingredients from the garden is such a luxury), an attempt at some quinoa & chia seed gluten free bread (epic fail, but will keep experimenting), fresh home made almond butter (my fave!) and there is now some fresh beetroot roasting in the oven to form part of a yummy salad. Recipes to follow shortly.
Until next time, keeping breathing.
Love Lili x