Stop At The Crossroads And Look Around

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I’m wondering what comes to your mind when you hear the comment “He is ancient”? What do you mean by ancient? Ancient is old, very old; it’s older than old. It belongs in the past, in the distant past. What did Jeremiah mean when he told the people to ask for the ancient paths?

We can go back in time to the beginning of our world and see how God has connected with people.  The ancient paths that are successful began with God.

Talking about path’s reminds me about an experience that Loren and I had when we climbed Mt. Sinai.  It’s summit is renowned for awe inspiring sunrise views.  Each year hundreds of pilgrims and tourists want to reach the top of Mt. Sinai by sunrise.  Leaving the motel at 2AM we felt it was worth our climb to reach the summit before sunrise.

On the way up I found myself ahead of Loren and between groups of people, it was dark with some light from the stars and moon.  I came to where the path divided, so I took what I thought was the way, but it wasn’t long before it became more difficult with no clear path to follow.  It became scary to me, the vastness of the wilderness, mountains and rocks made me feel lost and small, yet somehow a quiet peace surrounded me.  Even with the quiet strength I felt around me, I was only too happy to return to the fork in the path and take the other path.

Every road or path takes you where you want to go.  So when you come to the fork in the realm of decision making what do you do? Especially if both paths have either positives or negatives.  Every day I find I make lots of decisions, some significant some just a matter of daily routine.

Don’t you feel at times when you stand at your crossroad, life just looks gray?   The outlook of our world and our situations can be the color of gloom.  The option down each path doesn’t offer any promise. There seems to be no answer. Or there might be two options that are awesome.  Then the question comes to my mind, what is around the bend I can’t see, or what are the unintended consequences that I will have to face.

I like the song written by Paul Joseph Balache, “Open the eyes of my heart, Lord.”  As we bring our thinking into alignment with God we can open the eyes of our hearts so we can see hope!  So how can the ancient path help you.  We can look a little deeper and are able to find provision and hope.

So often I have found when I pray and I am open to God’s still small voice, I start to get a sense of what God is revealing to me and that path I need to take.  During the “seeking God’s will or guidance time,” I can look at how he has led people in the Bible, how he led me during the previous pivotal points in my life. I have found also there are times when someone will say something, or I will read something which seems to turn an idea on like a light bulb and I can see the decision I need to make.  Over the years Loren and I have found sometimes there are decisions where there is no right or wrong, or if we make a wrong decision the Lord will arrange circumstances which will redirect our focus.  Loren’s favorite text in this regard is Joshua 1:9 (NLT) “This is my command—be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid or discouraged. For the LORD your God is with you wherever you go.” Whatever our decision God honors our freedom of choice even though sometimes he needs to nudge us this way or that so we can see the ancient path he is directing us to.

As you see that ancient path and follow, you will be able to find that peace, happiness and contentment.

Love to you,

Ruth

Ruth Church pic-2012crop

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Chrysanthemum 

November birth flower

Chrysanthemums are also called mums or chrysanths

A Chrysanthemum bloom appears to be a single flower but is actually composed of hundreds of smaller flowers called florets. Each one of these florets is capable of producing a seed, similar to its plant relative, the Sunflower.

The Chrysanthemums are divided into 13 classes based primarily on its bloom form.

The chrysanthemum is one of the most popular flowers, outshined only by the rose. It is a traditional flower to give on Mother’s Day.

Closely related to the daisy Chrysanthemum resembles a close cousin the mugwort weed which is often called the wild Chrysanthemum – Native to India, as ‘indicum’ means ‘Indian,’ the flower can be found wild in most habitats in India, China, Japan, Indochina, Portugal, and other temperate and subtropical regions.

Below are 8 types of Mums or forms of Mums as a sample of 13 classesAs you can see there is a wide in configuration.

sample-of-chrysanthemums

Chrysanthemum History

In Japan, the chrysanthemum was adopted as the official seal of the Emperor following its introduction in that country in the 8th century AD. The Japanese Festival of Happiness is a celebration of the mum.

Chrysanthemums were first cultivated as a flowering herb in China in the 15th century BC with over 500 cultivars in existence by the early 1600’s.

The flower was brought to the Western World in the 17th century. It was named by Carolus Linnaeus from the Greek prefix chrys-, which means golden (the color of the original flowers), and -anthemon, meaning flower – thus golden flower.

The flower was introduced to Untied States in the late 1700’s when an imported variety identified as Dark Purple arrived from England courtesy of Colonel John Stevens.  Enomoto Brothers of Redwood City, CA (San Mateo County) grew the first chrysanthemums to be grown in America.

They are native to Asia and northeastern Europe. Most species originate from East Asia and the center of diversity is in China and have become the most widely cultivated flowers in the world

Chrysanthemum Symbols

The secret meaning of the mum is “You’re A Wonderful Friend.”

Symbolizes cheerfulness, rest, loveliness, optimism, joy, abundance, wealth.

Red means true love or “I love you.”

Yellow means slighted love or wounded heart.

White means truth, virtue of honesty, innocence, purity, and pure love.

Chrysanthemum In The Garden

Chrysanthemums are generally of two basic groups: The Garden Hardy variety and the Exhibition variety.  Although the perfume of a rose can summon an idea of paradise, the chrysanthemum’s fragrance conjures a den of feral cats.

The Garden hardy mum are new perennials and as the name suggests, are a sturdy bunch, capable of being wintered over in the ground

in most Northern latitudes.  They are capable of producing an abundance of small blooms with the least assistance and are able to withstand adverse weather conditions such as wind and rain. The right chrysanthemum flowers for your garden will come from a diverse selection of hardy or garden mums. When growing mums, you’ll find plants that are dwarf to giant, in colors from white and yellow to the deepest burgundy and purple. Some cultivars bloom in late summer, while others bloom as late as October.  Garden mums are usually planted in the spring, and will bloom all summer and autumn. With plenty of time to put down roots, garden mums can live for three to four years in USDA zones 5-9.

Exhibition mum. Or mums, because there are a dozen or more forms and scores of varieties that are variably cute, exotic or simply stunning. All of them are interesting and fulfill this plant’s promise. Cinderella shall go to the ball.  Some single blooms are the size of your head, others form tubular petals with openings redolent of tiny spoons, others raise the flower to a delicious tangle of threadlike petals.

Culinary uses

Yellow or white chrysanthemum flowers of the species C. morifolium are boiled to make a sweet drink. The resulting beverage is known simply as chrysanthemum tea and used in many parts of Asia. ( 菊 花 茶, pinyin: júhuā chá, in Chinese).

Chrysanthemum leaves are steamed or boiled and used as greens, especially in Chinese cuisine. The flowers may be added to thick snakemeat soup (蛇羹) to enhance the aroma.

Small chrysanthemums are used in Japan as a sashimi garnish.

In Korea, Gukhawaju is a rice wine flavoured with chrysanthemum flowers.

Chrysanthemum for medicinal purposes

The chrysanthemum flower is actually a powerful antiseptic and antibiotic! Chrysanthemum tea is said to cool the body, clear the liver, support immunity, recovery from influenza, to lower cholesterol, reduce high blood pressure, angina, relax the nervous system and slows aging.

The drink combined with other herbs, they are said to increase in potency and assist with dizziness and eyestrain as well as improving vision and comforts the eyes.

Another health benefit in the use of chrysanthemum tea is that it is believed ancient Chinese medicine points to chrysanthemum tea as offering long-term benefits related to blood and weight.

Chrysanthemum  Notes:

The term “chrysanthemum” is also used to refer to a certain type of fireworks shells that produce a pattern of trailing sparks similar to a chrysanthemum flower.

King Tut (Tutankhamen) was said to have been buried wearing floral collars of chrysanthemums and insects are repelled by resins of the plant

Resins of the plant are used in incense cones to ward off insects

Chrysanthemum plants have been shown to reduce indoor air pollution by the NASA Clean Air Study.

flower is also a symbol of the sun.

Both the Chinese and Japanese consider chrysanthemums a powerful emblem of youth. A petal placed in the bottom of a glass of wine is thought to enhance longevity. The Chinese also believe that it prevents gray hair.

Pyrethrum (Chrysanthemum cinerariaefolium) can be used as a natural source of insecticide.

These plants can be very toxic, particularly to cats, dogs and horses and can cause dermatitis in humans.

They are considered to be safest insecticides for use around food and being biodegradable when exposed to light, they are also considered to be an eco-friendly product.

 

 

References:

November

http://www.proflowers.com/blog/november-birth-flower-chrysanthemum

http://www.birthflowersguide.com/november-birth-flower.html

http://www.almanac.com/content/november-birth-flower

https://www.babiesonline.com/flowersbirthmonth/Chrysanthemum.asp

https://www.washingtonpost.com/lifestyle/home/the-hidden-world-of-exhibition-chrysanthemums/2015/10/20/ef9a7c54-736d-11e5-8248-98e0f5a2e830_story.html

 http://www.gardeningknowhow.com/ornamental/flowers/chrysanthemum/chrysanthemum-lifespan.htm

http://www.e2121.com/herb_db/viewherb.php3?viewid=167

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chrysanthemum

 

November Birth Flower

 

Chrysanthemums – A Fall Classic

 

 

The Power Of A Green drink

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Our daily morning green drink

has been a part of our lives now for almost 12 years.  When we decided to start a daily green drink Loren was getting sick for 1-2 weeks twice a year and I had just been diagnosed with osteopenia.  After reading an article by Dr. Russell Blaylock on the benefits of blenderize-your-vegetables ,we decided we would start having a green drink every morning.  Not long ago I had a bone scan and discovered that I had totally reversed my decline into osteoporoses.  So thankful for the good news that I had good strong bones with no sign of osteopenia or osteoporosis.   Within a few months after starting Loren did not get sick as he had every spring and fall as he had before we started the morning green drink regimen.

One morning I had just finished making our green drink and poured it into the little juice glasses when I noticed the morning sun was shining through the window.  They were so pretty in the sun I just had to get a picture.2glasses-gdaj-5122

For anyone starting a daily green drink regimen, it can seem like a daunting task.  Below I want to share with you my recipe and what I have learned over the years.

Ingredients – Basic

1 – 2 C. water
Kale (lightly steamed & cooled also freeze kale –When frozen use less kale as the frozen is more concentrated.) 
Swiss Chard
Cabbage
Asparagus – 2 Tbs.  (Powerful nutrients, anti-inflammatory)
Avocado (approximately 1/8 slice)
Salt   (best to have it salt free, Loren my husband prefers drinking it with some salt.  After I pour the green drink into his glass, he will stir in a few shakes from the shaker – I prefer mine is salt free)

Instructions  (We use a bullet blender bowl)

  1. Pour 1/3 full or approximately a cup worth into blender bowl
  2. I put everything in except the avocado (add handful each of Kale, Swiss Chard, Cabbage, or greens of choice – I always use cabbage, it is best to vary your greens)
  3. In a blender, blend water at medium, Increase to high speed(When I had a blender I could increase the speed, now that I use a Ninja bullet I only have one speed)
  4. Add avocado and blend well.
  5. Add water as needed.  I always use a little water to rinse out the blender bowl and pour into the glass.
  6. Serve – one cup for me and one cup for hubby! (If you live alone you can drink one cup and save the other cup in the refrigerator to drink in the evening.  Put in air-tight container so juice won’t oxydize.)

Notes:

If you are just starting out, drink about half as much and gradually increase the amount, either in vegetables or in the amount you drink.  When a person is not used to a concentrated amount of greens sometimes they will experience a healing crisis. (This means your body starts dumping toxins out of your system and you can feel sick.  Best to start on less amount and drink extra water to flush your system out.)

Avocado:  I found by adding avocado after everything else is blended it works better.  Not only does avocado have health benefits, but it gives the juice a nice creamy taste.  If you add too much, then it is quite thick.  I prefer just enough to give it a creamy texture.

You may use greens of choice or follow the recommended vegetables  by Dr. Blaylock in the article on blenderizing vegetables. (See article – blenderize-your-vegetables)

Power Nutrition Drink:  When you eat salads/raw vegetables, you only get 30% nutrition, when you blenderize them you get 90% nutrition.

Breakfast on the go: When Loren is gone, I add protein powder to the above green drink.  Voilà Breakfast!

For clarification call me if you have questions, 541-784-5794

When starting out you may find it is difficult to drink.  We started out by adding a tiny bit of salt and stevia to improve taste!   LOL  I have dropped both, and I drink it plain even though Loren adds a tiny bit of salt.

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Process In The Rhythm Of Our Daily Green Drink

Having a daily green drink can seem daunting.  I have found that if I keep an eye on what I need to have on hand and have it ready, it is a matter of 2-3 minutes and we have our fresh green drink every morning.  Below is a basic system that I follow.

Use pesticide free veggies by growing your own or buying organically grown.

Some vegetables are worse than others. Below are the vegetables that are the most pesticide loaded according to the Environmental Working Group.

  1. Celery
  2. Spinach
  3. Kale
  4. Collard Greens
  5. Lettuce
  6. Carrots
  7. Cucumber (not as bad if you peel the skin)

Organic vegetables a must:  For blenderizing greens or juicing, if at all possible use organic vegetables.  Your green drink is a concentrate with lots of wonderful nutrients and antioxidants, if you don’t use organic produce you are also getting a concentration of pesticides.  In the summer I grow my own organic vegetables and freeze many of the greens to use through the winter.  We live in a wonderful age now where most of the grocery stores carry organic food.  Shop around and you will find the ones who carry the freshest and best vegetables for your juice.  Not as good, but available is freeze dried greens.  That is what I use when we travel.  I fill capsules to take on the road.gse_2203

Fresh greens  from the store or from your home garden:  The first thing I do in cleaning and storing is to soak them them for about 10-15 minutees in GSE – grapefruit seed extract.  I fill a large bowl or pan with water add 5-10 drops of GSE, then let my greens soak in the water.  After which I drain them.  scingsesoak_2211I used to rinse the GSE out, but then I realized GSE can also be used as an immune booster when you are fighting the flu.  10 drops in a small glass of water  2-3 times a day helps your body fight whatever is trying to make you sick.  So then I figured, I don’t need to rinse them again.  Hopefully it just adds to the benefit we are getting from our drink.

Clean boxed greens. freshspinach_2197 It is convenient to get organic spinach, baby greens, arugula  etc. packed in boxes.  Often there is extra moisture in the box.  So I line a previous box I have saved and then move all the spinach (greens) into the paper towel lined box.  This will keep them fresher longer.

 

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Before storing my greens in the boxes, I spin the excess water out with my salad spinner.  If your greens have too much moisture they will spoil quicker.  Small amount of moisture keeps them fresh but too much makes them spoi.  After the greens are spun as dry as I can get them, I put them into spinach boxes I have saved.

Cabbage: I cut the head of cabbage in half, then soak it, after soaking, drain it well, cabbage_2199then fold a number of towels and set the half or quarter cabbage on them so it can continue to drain.  I then wrap the cabbage up and put it in a zip lock bag.

Asparagus has been shown to increase our immune system considerably.  It doesn’t matter what form you use it, the benefit is still there.  Fresh, steamed or canned.  So for convenience I buy the long spears in the cans.  I used to keep them in a jar after opening and using part of it each morning.  But then I started blending them and freezing the juice in my ice trays.  I keep them in a zip lock bag.  It is so handy just to drop a couple cubes into the water each morning. Shown on the plate below.fozen-veggies_2200

Left over vegetables:  I steam most of my vegetables for our meals.  Sometimes we have some leftover and there are times I make a little extra so that I can freeze them to use in our green drink.  After lunch I will use the steam rack ( What I steamed the vegetables on.)  and spread my vegetables out on it and put it open in the freezer.  After the vegetables are frozen I will put them  in a Ziploc bag to use in making our drink.

Garden Abundance: When I have an abundance of greens in the garden during the summer I will steam and freeze as much as I can to use all winter.  It saves money through the winter.

Parsley: I like to add parsley from time to time.parsleycr-5645Whether it is from your garden or from the store I like to put it in a glass of water like a bouquet.  That way it keeps it fresh and I can pull sprigs to use in green drink or as a garnish on foods.  In the summer I have an abundance of parsley so I will remove the large stems, soak in it in GSE, then spin it dray, put it on a cookie sheet and freeze it.  When it is frozen it is easy to pack a handful in each bag to vacuum pack and freeze.

Some of your greens need to be steamed:  The walls of plant cells are made of cellulose that human digestive enzymes can’t digest. Cooking breaks down these cell walls and releases the nutrients, which can then be absorbed.  So I always steam broccoli, brussels spouts & Kale to make them digestible.

Another reason to steam broccoli, brussels spouts & Kale is they contain chemicals called goitrogens that may inhibit absorption of dietary iodine.  Most people are not bothered by it unless they eat an exorbitant amount of them.  My father ate so much raw kale that he got hypothyroidism.   Recommendations are to eat moderate amounts of cruciferous vegetables, to cook them, and to eat iodine-rich foods, such as seaweed, to help balance out the iodine-blocking properties of goitrogenic foods.  If you don’t have a iodine deficiency you probably wouldn’t have to worry about goitrogens.

Oxygen decreases nutrition:frozenbroccolileaves_2201 You can use Ziploc bags to store your frozen greens.  I usually do that for my short term use, as when I freeze steamed left over vegetables.  But for a long term storage, it is best if you can vacuum pack.   When all the oxygen is removed then it protects your food & greens much better.

I have a little basket in my freezer freezebasket_2202where I keep all the frozen veggies for my green drink.  I never freeze the cabbage.

I used Ziploc bags for years, but was so grateful when I was able to buy a vacuum packing machine.  I not only use it for my greens I will freeze leftover entrées and other food.  I will freeze leftovers in a storage container, when frozen I  remove the frozen food from the container and vacuum pack it.  The food is kept fresh until I might want to thaw it for a meal.  It is nice when I am tight for time.  I set what I want out to thaw.  When it is time to get the meal ready, all I have to do is heat the food up.

Avocado:  Blending all the vegetables and drinking them is not all that pleasant to our thinking. avacado_2184 I have discovered if I add about 1/8 of an avocado it makes the drink creamy and much more pleasant to drink.  I also have discovered that it works best if I blend all the veggies well, then add the avocado to finish blending.  That seems to have worked the best for me

Some recipes add fruit.  I personally don’t like to add fruit as it digests faster than vegetables.  Although I do not know how it would affect digestion when blenderizing them together.  Possibly would not make a difference.

For more information and more information you can Google green drink recipes both under Juicing and Blenderizing green drinks.

Check out this excellent article by Dr. Russel Blaylock:Blenderize-your-vegetables

Another excellent article by Dr. Joseph Mercola: Juicing-your-key-to-radient-health

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Blenderizing – Health Benefits

 avacado-gdrink_2184Blending is the process of thoroughly blending whole fruits and vegetables into a smoothie (typically a green smoothie). Green smoothies are made in blenders. Juicing is the process of extracting the liquid content of whole foods through a special juicing machine. The fiber is then discarded.  Check out this excellent article at by Tracy Russell, the creator of “Reset 28”: http://www.incrediblesmoothies.com/green-smoothies/green-smoothies-vs-green-juices-which-is-better/

There are a number of reasons why you will want to consider vegetable juicing or blenderizing:

  • It gives you low fat, high fiber, plant protein, packed full of vitamins, minerals, antioxidants
  • It allows you to absorb all the nutrients from vegetables,
  • It allows you to consume an optimal amount of vegetables in an efficient manner,
  • You are able to add a variety of vegetables to your diet.

Below I have listed briefly some benefits for juicing and blenderizing.  There are books and articles which have been written listing all the benefits.  If you are interested you can Google for more detailed information.

A high consumption of cruciferous vegetables is associated with a decreased risk of cancer. This association appears to be most consistent for lung, stomach, colon, and rectal cancer, also consistent for prostatic, endometrial, and ovarian cancer.

They are rich in glucosinolates – a large group of sulfur-containing compounds.  They trigger the liver to produce detoxifying enzymes that block free-radical attack on your DNA.  They also are effective in DNA repair.

Cruciferous vegetables :

  • Arugula
  • Bok Choy
  • Broccoli
  • Brussel Sprouts
  • Cabbage
  • Cauliflower
  • Collard Greens
  • Kale
  • Mustard greens
  • Radish
  • Turnip
  • Watercress

Magnesium for Bone Health  –  Good sources of magnesium:

  • Green vegetables such as spinach, chard, spinach and peas etc.
  • Almonds, peanuts, cashews & pumpkin seeds
  • Avocado, figs
  • Lentils, black beans
  • Long-grained brown rice
  • Peanut butter
  • Potato, baked with skin

 

Sulfur in Cruciferous Vegetables & Allium vegetables  (onion, garlic, chives etc.)

  • Collagen can help fill in fine lines and wrinkles. It plumps up your skin and keeps it looking and feeling young and elastic
  • Soothe Your Joint Pain & Arthritis
  • Sulfur can help you detoxify (the regular transportation of toxins out of your body), lower your blood sugar, and, more importantly, it can help eliminate dead skin and bacteria.
  • It’s essential in creating cartilage, tendons, and ligaments

 Blenderizing each morning can become a normal morning routine that brings positive health benefits which will pay off for improved health.

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 Resources

2 Reasons You Need Sulfur this Winter + Where to Get It

 

Cruciferous Vegetables: Cancer Killer or Thyroid Killer?

  • http://nutritionfacts.org/video/almonds-for-osteoporosis/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=almonds-for-osteoporosis&utm_source=NutritionFacts.org&utm_campaign=cbf9805b18-RSS_VIDEO_DAILY&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_40f9e497d1-cbf9805b18-24103493
  • http://www.newsmaxhealth.com/dr_brownstein/Magnesium_and_Bone_Health/2012/12/10/489074.html?s=al&promo_code=1115C-1
  • http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2011/11/13/benefits-of-juicing.aspx

4 Proven Ways To Stronger Bones

 

Top 10 Magnesium Rich Foods Plus Proven Benefits

 

Green Smoothies Vs. Green Juices – Which Is Better?