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My Way: Cecilia Kinzie

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Cecilia is a raw foods community organizer, writer, teacher, and consultant in beautiful Sonoma County, California. Her raw journey started 8 years ago when she was able to heal herself from Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and asthma through a high raw food diet and positive thinking. She loves to give people the practical tools they need to easily add more raw food into their diets so that they can lose weight, have boundless energy, look and feel years younger, and radiate a happy healthy raw glow. To learn more about Cecilia and becoming raw visit her website Rawglow.com.

My Way: Cecilia

Friday - My day starts with a kiss goodbye from my husband before he leaves for work, then I hear the roar of the Vitamix blender as he blends the green smoothie I made for him. I carefully put all the fruits, leafy greens, and superfoods in the blender carafe the night before, so all my husband has to do is blend and go.

I get up shortly after he leaves with a million ideas running through my head. I leave one sleepy Chihuahua in the bed to catch up on her sleep and I say good morning to another Chihuahua, who is wide awake and raring to go. I should probably introduce my two furry babies; I can already tell they are going to steal the show today (they usually do!).

Meet Dancer, a white (with tan freckles on her ears) 6.5 pound Chihuahua mix that we rescued from a shelter a little over a year ago. She is sweet, gentle, elegant, and dainty with a feminine energy about her. Rescuing her was such a fulfilling experience and one of my best decisions ever! Meet Olive, a brown (with a white chest) spunky 4 pound Chihuahua mix with strong vocal chords, loves to fetch, and twirls when she is excited. We also rescued her from a puppy mill through a local dog rescue. My husband and I consider our puppies part of our family, and as you'll see they are a vital part of my day.

I stop by the kitchen to make some tea. I've gotten in the habit of drinking a liter of herbal tea or plain water in the morning. I've been having fun learning about the nutritional value and healing power of herbs. Every morning I make a different herbal concoction, today it's Pau de Arco, known for itís candida fighting properties. Sweetened with a little bit of stevia, it tastes pretty good.

With Olive in hand I go to the computer and I let her sleep under my shirt, right on my belly, while I sip tea and type away. This is my time during the day that my mental focus is the strongest so I try to do my best and most important work before noon. I write about raw foods for my website, blog, newsletters, and other projects I'm working on. I've always loved to write and I'm grateful to be able to write and share what I've learned about raw foods, healthy living, and healing over the last 8 years. The cool part is: I'm still learning everyday!

I want to inspire people to transform their lives through healthier living. I was able to heal from Chronic Fatigue Syndrome through raw foods and other lifestyle changes and believe strongly in the amazing power of change. My goal is to show people how easy it can be to take that first step.

I check my e-mail and to my surprise the N.Y. times used two of my quotes for a web article about Vegan Weddings. Cool! Hope the article encourages other brides to not compromise on their wedding day. My husband and I served only vegan food at our wedding almost a year ago and it was a hit.

I decide to take a break from the computer and play in the kitchen. I try out a new no-nut recipe for buckwheat cookies for a new project I'm working on. I munch on the cookie dough and a handful of blueberries. I put the cookies in the dehydrator and it takes all my willpower not to eat them before they are fully dehydrated.

Dancer wakes up and wants to play. I take the dogs for a walk in the sunshine and remember to think about all the things I'm grateful for, I call it my gratitude walk. Just looking at all the flowers and trees and feeling the sun on my skin gives me something to appreciate. Gratitude, I have found to be the number one most effective tool for transforming my life. Everyday I try to think of at least 5 things I'm grateful for.

After the dogs are fed and taken care of, I make my smoothie for the day. Usually it's a big green smoothie, but today I feel like something different. I take a bunch of nectarines from the farmer's market, coconut kefir, vanilla, maca root powder, sweeten it with a bit of stevia, and go back to the computer to work some more. Maca is one of those super foods that I really notice a difference when I take it, makes me feel sexy!

It's now time to take another brisk walk to run some errands and exercise. My dogs are so good for my health, they get me moving out in the sunshine, and anytime I need a stress reliever they are there to play and cuddle. What would I do without them?

Back home now and my friend Nova comes over bearing a huge flat of wheatgrass and some homemade dehydrated coconut flakes. Raw food friends rock! Nova made the most awesome nut free raw berry cobbler with blueberries, raspberries, and strawberries last weekend and I plan to recreate it with the coconut flakes she gifted me.

We catch up as we get ready for the raw food potluck that I organize once a month. It's been a busy week as last weekend we were part of a local Raw Food Health Expo. At the Expo I remember just feeling so genuinely happy. I was doing what I love best: teaching people (in this case about raw foods), and I offered energy healings as well. Teaching, healing, and writing are some of my favorite things, just not quite sure how they will all come together yet. I know I'm on the right track because I'm following what I love to do; I just need to have the faith that I'll be shown the way to bring everything together.

My husband comes home and we get busy setting up for the potluck. At least twenty people show up with an abundance of raw food dishes. I try a little bit of everything, but my favorite is the beet salad with the apple curry dressing. Itís my lucky night as someone has brought my favorite dessert, a luscious raw coconut cream pie! I usually don't eat desert much, but I make a worthwhile and delicious exception.

The speaker for the potluck's topic is: Helping Modern Day Mystics Find True Abundance by Putting Foundations Under Their Dreams. He has us do an exercise where we imagine our highest vision for ourselves and then we ground the vision into the earth. It was a very powerful exercise for me. My vision was so big that I don't fully understand it yet, but he told me to have trust in it. I'm just going to trust that the Universe has something bigger in store for me than I can wrap my head around at this point.  The talk and visualization exercise was perfect for where I am right now. The Universe always works in perfect ways.

My husband, Nova, and I finish cleaning up and go back to my place to try the raw dehydrated buckwheat cookies that are ready. Yum! They are warm, chewy, and vanilla goodness. We all agree they are delicious and they make a sweet ending to a busy day.

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Saturday - Next morning, I get up early to walk and feed the dogs as my husband and I need to make it to the farmer's market before closing time. Going to the farmer's market has become such an exciting ritual. We love people watching and being surrounded by an abundance of good people, good food, and good music. I rush to get some organic peaches before they sell out, while my husband heads to the Yucatan Tamale Stand which has some fantastic vegetarian options that he enjoys. I meet him later with a big jar of locally made apple, red cabbage, and juniper berry sauerkraut. We eat together and bask in the sun, gushing over how lucky we are to have such a lively farmerís market in our area. Eating a whole jar of sauerkraut for breakfast at the farmer's market is my Saturday treat.

Then we head to our local Co-op Health Food Store where I pick up some extras I couldn't get at the market. Some garlic red pepper chickpea miso and some herbs to use in my morning teas: licorice root and shizandra berry, both powerful adaptogens, and milk thistle, a liver regenerating herb. I'm also out of B-12 so I pick some up too. I supplement everyday with a B-complex, Vitamin D, a mineral supplement, and probiotics. My husband tries a locally made pineapple Kombucha, I think itís his new favorite.

We get home and my husband goes out to hit some golf balls. I take the dogs for a long walk and make a note to take a deep breath, put my feet on the earth, and soak up some earth energy. I take any chance I can get to connect to nature. The sky is blue, the sun is shinning, what a beautiful California day!

Even though it's a Saturday, I decide to work. I'm one of those very lucky people for whom work is like play, so I'm happy to do it. I make a few videos that I'll post on YouTube in the next few days. One video I made is a recipe demo of a Basil Avocado Sea Vegetable Salad using locally sourced Mendocino Silky Sea Palm, Bull Whip Kelp, heirloom tomatoes, and Japanese cucumbers. After the video is finished, I devour the beautiful summer salad for lunch made with only organic, local, and mostly heirloom ingredients. How awesome is that?

My friend calls and I put her on speaker phone so that I can make food while we talk. I make some raw dehydrated sweet potato chips to have something to snack on during the week. I also decide to make some raw crackers with the soaked buckwheat I had left over from the cookie recipe from yesterday. I have a hard time finding dehydrated treats without a lot of nuts, so I make my own occasionally. I use some zucchini squash that my husband and I have grown to put in the crackers. We have grown so much summer squash in our two garden plots this year that I am constantly trying to find creative ways to use them in recipes.

I put all the cracker ingredients in the blender (soaked buckwheat, chia seeds, flax seeds, almond milk pulp, tomatoes, zucchini, onion, curry, and sea salt), spread them on the dehydrator sheets, and hope for the best since I didn't bother to use a recipe (where's the fun in that?). I'm one of those creative types that loves experimenting in the kitchen (by the way they turned out great as I'm using them to scoop some avocado and sauerkraut as I type right now).

My husband comes home and we head out to our community garden to harvest our crops. Our community garden has been a fun project this year. My husband used hydroponic technology to start the plant starts from seed. We added mycorrhizae, a beneficial bacteria for the soil and rock dust, among a host of other good enzymes and nutrients for our plants to flourish. So lucky to have married a man with a green thumb; we're a good match because he loves to grow the kind of food that I love to prepare and eat.

We harvest all types of summer squash, cucumbers, tomatoes, lettuce, basil, and other herbs such as stevia and lemon verbena. Mother Nature is amazing, even with little effort on out part, our garden produced some beautiful produce.

When we get home I make some lemon verbena tea (my favorite) and make a beautiful salad with all the ingredients from our garden dressed with a hemp seed oil dressing. I also make a huge pot of vegetable soup with onion, garlic, zucchini, Korean eggplant, sweet potato, chard, kombu seaweed, basil, ginger, and a small amount of the garlic red pepper chickpea miso.

Not 100 percent raw anymore. I was for about 5 years but in the last three years I've added some steamed veggies, squash, sweet potatoes, grains like quinoa and amaranth, and some legumes as well, mainly to add variety to my diet and to get away from the high nuts and the high fruit on a 100% raw diet. I'm still eating a high raw diet but just a bit more relaxed about it. For me, trying to be perfect was exhausting, but striving to be happy and whole is a much more satisfying journey.

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My husband and I enjoy our soup and salad dinner and then end the night by connecting with Dancer on the couch and playing fetch with, little firecracker, Olive. Moments like this one I feel so grateful and fulfilled to have so much love and support in my life from my family. I have the grounded and simple life I always dreamed of: full of love, good food, and the opportunity to give flight to my dreams.

My name is Cecilia and this is My Way

To keep up with Cecilia check out her bi-monthly newsletters full of important information pertaining to the raw food's lifestyle, health, and healing. Plus when you sign up you will get a Free Raw food Starter Guide E-book and a Free Raw Foods List to set up your raw food kitchen today!

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