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31 Aug

The Otter

My son attends Cal State Monterey Bay, and their mascot is the otter.  We’ve been to the Monterey Bay Aquarium several times, and always love watching the otters outside.  The otter is a very playful and expressive animal.  Otters awaken our curiosity, they remind us that life is interesting, we just have to look at it from the right angle.  Otters always seems to have fun, they’re never bored.  Otters love the water, which brings out the aspects of the feminine, and of creativity, imagination, joy and a love of children.  They remind us to rediscover our inner child and just play.  When we come across an otter, or an otter symbol, it is a sign that we need to reawaken our sense of wonder, and to participate in some creative activity with joyful abandon.

Animal Spirit Oracle Readings on CoffeyTalk


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31 Aug

Music Therapy

Music is a wonderful form of therapy, and has been used in healing in various cultures for centuries.  Recent studies confirm that music can reduce pain and anxiety, and also improve blood pressure and breathing.  It can also help infants in intensive care unites gain weight more quickly.  A study published in the European Journal of Anesthesiology reported that postsurgical patients who listened to music required less pain medication.  And another study published in the Journal of Advanced Nursing found that listening to music for an hour a day reduced chronic pan by up to 21% and depression by up to 25%.  How does this work?  When we are in pain we can’t focus on opposing sensations at the same time.  Listening to music blocks the perception of pain signals and can reduce anxiety, which can heighten the sensation of pain.  What to do?  When in pain, breathe deeply while listening to a favorite piece of relaxing music.  See if your doctor will play calming music during painful procedures.  And make music a regular part of your relaxation during the day.  Pay attention to the melody, the rhythm, and the lyrics, and notice how your body becomes at ease.

Self-Healing with Sound and Music (Audio CD)


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31 Aug

Magic Words

Of course there are no coincidences, I came upon this book almost by magic!  I was on amazon looking at my own book (it’s still in print, so if you haven’t bought it yet, please do!) and there was a little blurb showing I was quoted in “Magic Words: A Dictionary.”  Of course I was curious, and the description sounded interesting, so I ordered the book.  And it’s really fun!  You will find all sorts of magic words and their origins listed.  For example “evanesco” comes from the Latin word meaning “to vanish” and it is used in a vanishing spell in one of the Harry Potter books.  Other words include Mississippi, Now, Tara, Aloha, Go, Hfuhruhurr, Hokus Pokus, Mumbo Jumbo, Rhubard and much more!  I am quoted, along with Jean Houston, Jack Kerouac, and Robert Thurman (good company!) about the meaning of “Om Mani Padme Hum,” an ancient Sanskrit mantra.  While there are several different translations, the one I used in my “What’s Your Dosha, Baby” book, and that is quoted in “Magic Words,” is “I surrender to the pearl within the lotus.”

Magic Words: A Dictionary


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31 Aug

Dessert Hot Off the Grill

During the summer we’re spending more time outdoors, and cooking on the grill.  There’s no reason why we can’t cook up a lovely dessert out there, too!  Grilling fresh seasonal fruit brings out the sweetness, the sugars in the fruit caramelize over the fire into pure yumminess!  Make sure the grill is well-oiled so the fruit doesn’t stick.  It takes just a few minutes and your fruit dessert is ready to eat.  Top it off with a scoop of ice cream (or the soy version, for us vegans!) and you’ve got a fancy and delicious presentation!  Here are some ideas to get you started:

-Honeydew or cantaloupe melon.  Cut into long spears so you get pretty grill marks.  Brush with a little lemon juice and ginger.

-Pears.  Cut in half and scoop out the core.  Sprinkle with cinnamon and brown sugar.  Serve with chopped hazelnuts.

-Bananas.  Make your own version of bananas foster with a little brown sugar, and optional banana liquor!

-Apricots and Nectarines.  These fruits taste great brushed with a little honey and served with sugar cookies.

-Pineapple skewers.  Perfect just on their own, a tropical treat!

-Fruit Kabobs!  Skewer your favorite fruits together and grill.  Colorful and tasty, too!

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31 Aug

Lomi Lomi

Lomi Lomi is a traditional Hawaiian massage.  In fact, Lomi Lomi means massage, or loving hands.  It comes from the ancient Hawaiian philosophy of Huna.  Huna essentially says that everything seeks harmony and everything seeks love.  Lomi Lomi works getly and deeply into the muscles with continuous, flowing strokes that focus on giving love through the hands and the heart.  It nurtures the body so that you feel completely relaxed.  When we feel this relaxed, we can let go of old beliefs and behaviors that are stored in the cells of our body.  Lomi Lomi helps us to release blockages, while also giving energy a new direction.  It’s not just a physical experience, it helps with healing on mental, emotional, and spiritual levels also.

Huna says that when harmony is lacking the effect is pain.  Pain leads to tension, and illness, which blocks energy.  Lomi Lomi releases energy, promotes harmony and facilitates healing.  The healing effects of the massage continue long after the massage is over.

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31 Aug

Diabetes Prevention

I volunteer at a local group foster home.  One of our teen girls is overweight and at risk for diabetes.  Because the meals are made for all the kids there, it is difficult for her to figure out just what she can eat.  I did some research online and came up with a plan to make it simple.  It’s all about keeping blood sugar steady, and being aware of how this works so that we can make good choices.  When I was looking into all this, I realized what a good plan this really is for everyone!  So now we’ve got most of the other girls she lives with supporting her, and helping themselves to be more healthy by following the plan, too.  Here is it, if you want to check it out for yourself!


-Whole grains (brown rice, whole grain pasta, unprocessed oatmeal, legumes (peas, beans), vegetables, fruits (not too many bananas)

-Olive oil, Salmon, Tuna, Flax seed oil

-Lean chicken breast, tofu, whey protein powder

-Green tea, cinnamon, turmeric

-LOTS of water!


-JUNK food (no chips, no crackers, no cake, no chocolate, no candy, no soda, no cookies)

-White flour or white rice (no bread, no pasta, no pastry)

-Saturated or hydrogenated fats: NO red meat, no cheese, no ice cream or high-fat dairy, no pie, no peanut butter

-Fruit juice (too much sugar causes blood sugar to spike)


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31 Aug

Reasons to Love

Love comes easily, and often it comes abundantly! 
Ayurveda teaches us to love what is, rather than what we think should be.  Keeping that in mind, here are some reasons to love people dominant in each of the doshas:


5 Reasons to Love a Vata:

*Cool hands, warm heart.

*Always lots to talk about.

*Fun, fun, fun!

*A flair for fantasy.

*Vatas are amazing!


5 Reasons to Love a Pitta:

*Can talk you into anything

*A predictable stomach clock.

*Passion, passion, passion!

*Great at problem-solving.

*Pittas are HOT!


5 Reasons to Love a Kapha:

*Who could resist those eyes?

*One word: Stamina.

*Hugs, hugs, hugs!

*Your best friend.

*Kaphas are lovable!


Check out our T-shirts, mugs, etc with these lists on them in the Dosha Shop.

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31 Aug


Most grocery stores now have an organic section in their produce departments.  The term “organic” means that this is food that has been cultivated and processed without any chemicals.  Since there is nothing to kill the bugs, and no wax on the apples, the fruits and vegetables might not look as picture perfect as we have become used to, but they actually taste wonderful!  Organic farming is better for the land as well, as the runoff from fertilized fields feeds into rivers and oceans, potentially polluting the water and posing hazards to life in and around it.  Organic methods are really getting back to basics, the way we farmed back before any of these chemicals were created.  Organic methods build up the soil, creating stronger, more disease-free plants.  Going organic is a great choice, both
nutritionally and ecologically.

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31 Aug

Tea Time

I love my afternoon tea.  However, as I am very opposed to caffeine, I always have herbal tea, which isn’t really tea in the true sense of the word.  Herb tea is an infusion made of herbs, greens, flowers or roots.  They have been used as medicines for centuries.  Here are some of the most popular
herbal teas and their uses:

-Angelica Tea helps with both cough and colic.

-Chamomile Tea soothes the stomach and aids in relaxation.

-Ginseng Tea helps reduce fatigue, stress, and high blood pressure.

-Lemon Verbena Tea helps to bring down a fever, and also induces a restful sleep.

-Peppermint tea works wonders for nausea.

-Rose Hips tea is high in vitamin C and is good for fighting colds.



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31 Aug

A Spiritual Classic

“Letters of the Scattered Brotherhood: A Twentieth-Century Classic for Those Seeking Serenity and Strength” was originally published as a book in 1948.  Before then, the various letters were printed in a weekly newsletter for the fourteen years prior.  The letters were written by different people, of different religions and from different cultures, then compiled and edited by Mary Strong.  She has also included quotations (you know how I love quotations!) which she says are “evidence of the timelessness of the idea of inner spiritual illumination and of the great company scattered the world over without regard to space, time, age or creed.”  I like to keep this book nearby, and when I need guidance, flip it open randomly to a page.  There is always some wisdom and comfort to be garnered wherever I happen to land.

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