Tuesday, 23 December 2008


The visit to Jan, the Herbalist at the Earth Energies Clinic in Ashby,went well and I now have a better idea of what I'm doing, foodwise and generally.

It looks like I do have candida in my gut and it needs to be tackled so I can get my health back and lose that two stone the GP said I should lose. Here's an interesting link for those who want to know more about candida. Glad to say I'm not on the strict diet yet - Jan felt I needed to be built up first and she also wanted me to enjoy the festive season without too many restrictions and guilt trips. I'm also still OK to have our regular Saturday night curry too. Fine by me! LOL

Out of my diet so far are: sugar and sugary/processed stuff; salt and items covered in salt; cut right back on pasta; chips - only occasionally can have spuds; milk/cream - allowed some bio-yoghurt occasionally; cheese (though allowed my fave tuna melt panini at the weekend); coffee and any other caffeine drinks (allowed a cappuccino at the weekend, as a treat); sausages (because of the rusk in them); gravy (though I shall be ignoring that Christmas Day and Boxing Day!) and anything with yeast in it (except for the odd slice of wholegrain bread at the moment). Shopping involves much more packet reading these days!

The regime: instead of toast and honey for breakfast it's porridge oats, made with water, with grated apple or mixed berries or a little cinnamon mixed in - alternatives are wholemeal toast (just discovered I like Warburton's Wholegrain loaf and it doesn't give me indigestion) with scrambled egg or griddled bacon and tomatoes. I'm having an apple a day which Jan said to have mid-morning but I feel hungrier between dinner and tea, so have it then. Dinner (or lunch, if you're posh) is any kind of fish with green leaf salads, celery and other salad stuffs, usually with a little left over couscous or rice. Tea is meat and vegetables with brown rice (basmati rice is OK too) or couscous. As much of the food as possible has to be organic, to avoid the anti-biotics, growth hormones, genetic modifications, pesticides, additives plus the extra salt and sugar that is in much of the food produced today. I also have to drink a litre of bottled spring water a day....... so I'm currently peeing for the whole of the British Isles, not just for England!

Before each meal I take 5mg, in water, of Jan's herbal concoction. I can't remember everything that's in there but the ones I do are: milk thistle, mint (for taste, aid digestion), fennel (help with bloating) and mistletoe. Basically, there's a selection of herbs in there to help my circulation, aid digestion/absorption, stop fluid retention and to help with the weight loss. All I can say is: it's the most foul tasting thing I've had in a long while - seriously dirty stuff - but it does seem to be helping. I've lost a little weight already. :0)

As well as the diet info and dirty medicine I came away with a selection of herbal teas to try, as an alternative hot drink to the coffee I can't have for now. There was another one called Cleanse but I've already drunk that one - looks like horse pee but smells lovely and tastes nice! LOL

I thought I would miss the hot java and caffeine hit way more but, at the moment, it's hardly bothering me at all. Who would have guessed? LOL

As well as DS stocking us up with organic meats (and other things) from Brigg Farmer's Market each month we have also now signed up for a fortnightly organic veggie box from Woodland Farm. Yesterday I used some of those veggies to make a beef and veg stew - no beer added this time, so I got inventive with the cooking herbs and also added some paprika, for a change. Yummy! It must have been good because DH said "that was tasty"...... and he's not usually one for the compliments. LOL For afters I found some pears in the pantry that had gone soft, so I peeled and cored, then roughly chopped them into a pan, added enough Orchard Pig apple juice to cover (sweet enough - no need to add sugar like most recipes seem to call for) and gently simmered it to reduce the liquid, then added a little cinnamon. That was served in glass dishes and topped with Tesco's No added salt/sugar Muesli and a dollop of plain, set bio-yoghurt. Double yummy!

There was enough pear mix left over to have on the top of my porridge this morning - great way to start the day! Plus, as it was a full family-sized slow cooker's worth of stew I made yesterday, we're having what's left tonight with some cabbage (also from the box). Bet my two have to add some chips! *sigh*

With all those changes I'm now well on the way to having the recommended 5-a-day, so that's another plus, and suddenly I now seem to be enjoying food much more - the choosing, preparing and cooking, as well as the eating, so that's another plus. :0) Energy levels can still be a bit hit and miss but that will take time to sort and it's still early days.

I go back for a review and more of the dirty stuff on the 30th and I think more restrictions will come in then too, so wish me luck. ;0)

Sunday, 21 December 2008

Monday, 1 December 2008


On Sunday the three of us went to the Food Fair at Lincolnshire Showground for a look-see, arriving shortly before dinnertime.

On the way in there was a large van that was offering small tasters of freshly made pork risotto - very tasy and I made sure I got the recipe leaflet for that.

We paid to get in and decided to immediately look for something more substantial to eat, heading towards the top end of the hall that had cooking smells coming from it. There were several places to get food from, with tables and chairs close by, and we opted for a carvery stall - DH had a pork and stuffing roll whilst DS and I had the beef roll. It was a little pricey but well worth it, as it was the tenderest and tastiest beef we'd eaten in a very long while. Once we were suitably refreshed we decided to have an initial wander round to suss the place out and get a feel for what was on offer before honing in on what we were interested in...... which was easier said than done, to start with, as it was quite busy.

Alex and her family were also there so it wasn't long before DS disappeared off to have a wander round with them.

There was quite a nice selection of food and drink stalls with a few craft type stalls thrown in for those on the look out for gifts. The top end of the hall had a large loading bay style door that was open so people could access the small marquee that was tagged on to the building: that held other eatery places in it, as well as the Gringley Gringo chilli stall. DS came back from there clutching their last bottle of Thai Sweet Chilli Sauce as if it were more precious than a bar of gold (guess who got to carry it? LOL) before disappearing off again.

Once around the hall and we started to collect a few leaflets and make a few purchases. We got a pack of smoked kippers for DH from one of the smoked fish stalls as DS hadn't brought any back from Brigg Farmers Market the previous weekend because DH was going off to Italy.

Next we aimed for the Real Tea and Coffee Company stall where we sampled their Italian blend coffee (lovely, even though it was black and without sugar!) and we succumbed to a packet of that and one of the Rich Hazelnut, as we like to dig the filter coffee maker out over the festive season to have cups of proper coffee with real cream, as a treat (we always have instant the rest of the year). DH also decided to go for some proper tea: the English Breakfast tea and English Afternoon Blend. I wouldn't have minded getting some of their herbal teas as well but decided to wait until after my visit with the Herbalist to make sure I don't drink something that isn't a good combination with the treatments she will be giving me.

Next I made a beeline for the turned wood craft stall, dragging DH along in my wake, so I could check out the staffs and walking sticks he was selling. I'd been looking for a staff for some time, hadn't found what I wanted, so put the idea to the back of my mind - this was another of those incidences where I stopped looking and promptly found exactly what I wanted! I was instantly drawn to a particular one and picked it up to get a "feel" for it, put it back and handled a few more to see whether or not I got the same vibe from them - nope, so I picked the first one up again and asked the Turner what wood he'd used. The wood is Ash and it's finished with a piece of v-shaped Scottish Red Deer antler, which was taken from antlers that have been naturally shed by the stags, and the ends of the v are finished with small pieces of rounded bison horn. The Turner kept giving me some of the smaller staffs to try, as he considered this one too tall for me to comfortably walk with it, but I kept saying no, it's OK because I don't want to use it that way. That confused him no end, so he asked what I wanted it for but I just kept shaking my head, then paid for my staff. He asked one final time so I though OK and said "Pagan purposes" and explained: I want to use it, mainly on the festival days, to dress it in flower garlands or ivy. He started making warding off motions with his hands and backed away whilst saying OK, he didn't need to know more. I started laughing when we moved away and said to DH that I almost said to the guy that he really didn't want to know what I was going to use it for..... and I was right. LMAO In case you're curious: it will go outdoors in warm weather, slightly pushed into the Earth, next to the sacred space I intend to build out there - inside in colder weather, pushed into a small bucket of sand, to stand by my altar and it will be garlanded in whatever flowers or greenery that's appropriate to each festival. Think of it as an alternative decorated tree. :0)

After that came the Il Nutrimento stall where I bought a bag of Kamut couscous to try. The stall holder, a chap with a lovely, rolling Italian accent, told me that it's one of two species they stock (can't remember the name of the other one) that were the main cereal crops grown and eaten in Roman times. I like couscous as an occasional alternative to pasta, rice or potatoes and thought this would be a nice one to try. After this we left the hall to drop the bags at the car and grab a bottle of water, then went back in again....... quickly, as it was bitterly cold and had got a bit gusty. I kept my staff with me though as I'd soon discovered it was extremely useful for warding off buggy pushing people who weren't watching how close they were getting to my ankles - a quick tap on the tiled floor with the metal-capped end a few inches away from my feet had them stopping in their tracks or quickly swerving around me. Result! LOL

Back to looking for more festive goodies. Although I rarely drink alcohol I did want a mulled wine for toasting at Yule but failed to find anything. There were, however, a couple of stalls that were selling other spirits so we wandered over to taste a fruit liqueur. DH succumbed to buying a brandy based blackberry liqueur from one seller but I wasn't overly keen on it, as it was very heavily spirit tasting, with only a hint of fruit - the sip I had made me cough when the fumes caught the back of my throat. DH is obviously made of stronger stuff as he liked it. As we passed another the Lombard Wine stall on the other side of the hall I was stopped in my tracks by two bottles labelled Harvest Moon and Hunter's Moon....... now with a name like that I just had to have a better look, didn't I? ;0) Both are fruit liqueurs with the difference being that Harvest Moon is brandy based whilst Hunter's Moon is rum based. As DH had just bought the blackberry brandy I asked to try Hunter's Moon, sharing the sample with DH. I sniffed and could instantly smell the fruit, then I took a small sip, rolled it round my tongue, swallowed.... and got the tastiest fruity hit ever. Needless to say, we complimented the stall holder and bought a bottle...... and if DH hadn't already got the other bottle we'd have had some of the Harvest Moon liqueur as well. LOL I shall enjoy seeing in the festive season with a small tot of that wonderful taste. :0)

A selection of mini oat cakes (plain, cheesey and wheat-free) were also added to our haul, from one of the cheese stalls, so DH can enjoy his cheese and biscuits in an evening - they're better than cream crackers, healthwise.

DS put in an appearance around now, as Alex and family had left. He had a fair few bags on him, as he'd managed to buy a number of Christmas pressies, and was very happy with his haul. He also came back with bags full of cookies, as that stall holder was wanting to sell up so was selling them off at a cut price and DS can't resist a bargain (no, I won't be helping out with eating them!).

With DS's help we also bought some gifts from one stall (won't say what as Alex may read this blog) then two scented pillar candles from the Tranquility stall (Complementary Therapies and gifts). They're a blend of lavender, orange and ylang ylang - a very relaxing mix. From them we heard about the benefits of cinnamon for diabetics and they told us about the cinnamon chocolate that is OK for diabetics that the Special Edition Chocolate stall were selling, so we headed over there. DH got the last bar of the cinnamon chocolate and also, as he really misses his Terry's Chocolate Oranges, a bar of the cinnamon and orange chocolate. We had a natter with the stall holder and she told us that taking between a quarter and half a teaspoon of cinnamon a day can eventually sort out a Type 2 diabetic (as DH is) but it needs to be consistent and could take as much as a year for the benefits to be felt. It's one of the reasons why they decided to produce the cinnamon chocolate, though she did recommend it was best in moderation and that DH had no more than two squares at a time. DS also bought a couple of bars for gifts too, one of which was a bar of fig chocolate for his Grandpa.

By this time the number of people in the hall had well thinned out and we realised that it wasn't far off time for it to close so we headed for home. It was a good day out which we all enjoyed and we hope they run this event again next year. :0)



When I felt more like my usual self I sat at a table so Aureen could start her readings. To start with she asked if I could give her something to hold that was mine, so I handed her a ring that I've worn for well over 10 years and that's hardly ever been off my finger in that time. This type of reading is known as Psychometry.

She then told me that my Dad was there, that he'd actually walked in the room with me but she had asked him to wait to speak until after the Reiki session. What came from that reading was that Dad, although not happy at having had to leave us, is happy where he is, as he is with Mum again. He came back because he was worried about me and to tell me it was time to let go of all the anger and grief, that he was looking at things from a different perspective now and that everything happened as it was supposed to. I was to stop making myself ill over it all and let it all go. There was mention of a picture of my Mum and Dad where they were happy and smiling - I knew straightaway it was the one I have on the mantelpiece - and that was how we were to remember them both from now on. We were also to make sure we got our homes decorated up for the festive season (my efforts were half-hearted after Mum passed away and have been less than that since Dad passed, so he got me with that) and make sure we got together and had a party - we were to be happy and have fun because that's how he liked to see us. There were certain characteristics about him she picked up on and mentioned which confirmed for me that Dad was there: how he liked to keep busy, even when he was ill; his straight talking, no nonsense style; his sense of fun; care for his family and similar things.

The name Harry was mentioned and she also asked if someone worked with sheep. I didn't recognise the name and couldn't think of any sheep connection (apart from a family joke but I wasn't explaining that one! LMAO) but my DSis has since confirmed that Dad used to talk about his Uncle Harry and that an Aunt and Uncle used to have a farm and had some sheep. It's not the first time a medium has been able to tell me something about my family/ancestry that I didn't know about at the time but was confirmed later by a family member.

There were mesages concerning my DS: she asked if he'd been looking for another job, as she could see he was unsettled and that there was a lot of negativity around him at the moment. Only the night before DS had come in and announced that he was so fed up with the lousy atmosphere at work and with how slow it was that he'd had enough and was going to start looking for another job! She said he should try and hang on in there until after Christmas but in the meantime he needed to protect himself from all the negativity swirling around him. 2009 is going to be a challenge for him but it will also stretch him and that is what he needs. He would finally find his place and would be much happier. So much was right there: it's boring where he is, even when there's plenty of work to do, and they're not making the most of his skills either, but now it's quietened off because of the "slump" (let's be honest - it's a recession!) he's way beyond bored now. The general feeling is that there will probably be some job losses early next year anyway: one, possibly two, from the yard and one from the office - DS already thinks he'll be the one from the office. Fingers crossed all goes well for the coming year and he does finally find his niche. :0)

There were a couple of messages from Mum and more from Dad but I'm struggling to remember everything and some I'd prefer to keep to myself. :0)

The Tarot card reading was next and I chose my thirteen cards. Lots more came out in the reading, with many of the cards underlining much of what had been said during the psychometry reading and what was talked about after the Reiki session. It never ceases to amaze me just how accurate the cards are.

I shall be more general here, as there was an awful lot of information given: DH and I would become even closer; DS was to hang on to his money because he would need it, to see him through his challenging year; moneywise we will be comfortably off and I shall see some money coming to me next year (thankfully not via an inheritance - I don't want anyone dying for that to happen!); we shall be travelling in the next 3 to 4 months, within this country and for a positive reason (wonder where we're going?); we'll be needing a workman, probably to fix something, around March; I need to stand back, count my blessings and let go of all the negatives (I regularly count my blessings - am working on letting go); 2009 will be better for me and there'll be changes for the positive, I just need to get out there (again, working on it); balance with money and everything else will be achieved by midsummer; I need to stick to what I believe in and stand up for what I believe (this could be interpreted in many ways but I think I know the gist of what it's referring to); a strong connection to Earthly things, fertility (mentioned I need to plant more flowers to attract more wildlife to my garden and spend more time out there - I certainly do feel much better when I can get out there but it's not exactly the weather for that at the moment!), it also refers to new things and new opportunities to make my life more fertile; lots of opportunities will open up to me soon but I'll need to be selective as "all that glitters is not gold", so only go for the best; the last card was the Queen of Swords and Aureen saw her as me, growing and becoming the strong person the card represents.

Next came the Angel card reading.
  1. Answered prayer: my prayers would be answered, although not quite in the way that was expected. (I know all about that already, it's why I refrain from spellwork to achieve things - the Universe tends to have a warped sense of humour, giving that wished for in a way that is usually designed to teach us a lesson).

  2. Power: using my own, to pick myself up and use it to achieve things - asking Archangel Michael to help when I want to go out on my own;

  3. Forgiveness: I wrote "others and myself" before she spoke - she confirmed it. It's all wrapped up with the loss of my parents;

  4. Celebrations: referring to the family Christmas etc mentioned by Dad, to bring in light, peace and love;

  5. Children: release the child in me and have fun (wonder if that's some of what's behind me buying that drum! LOL);

  6. Nature: get out into Nature when I can, planting, going walking with my DH;

  7. Ideas and Inspiration: I need to put my ideas and inspiration into action so my life can grow and benefit from them;

  8. Blessings: to let me know that I have them;

  9. Retreat: although I need to get out more etc there are also times when I do need to retreat and switch off occasionally, to recharge myself, so I need to do this (but not to such an extreme in future LOL. As I'm a typical Cancerian I do recognise that);

  10. New Beginnings: these are being brought in, along with new ways of dealing with things;

  11. Guardian Angel: she was there and this was to tell me to invite her into my life and to work with her;

  12. Self-Acceptance: acknowledge who I am and accept myself for it, warts and all.

Again this all reinforced much of what had gone before. The final comment was for me to plant that picture of my Mum and Dad in my mind and to carry it in my heart. :0)

During the readings we also spoke of things that related to various cards. At one point Aureen asked if I was looking for a Development Circle. I told her that, weirdly enough, it wasn't that long ago that I'd told DH that if I was ever going to do the things I want to do, to develop in the way I would like to along my Path, I couldn't expect everything to come to me. Staying cooped up in the house couldn't continue - I had to get out into the world again, so those opportunities could start to happen. I feel the Universe was listening, as this was one of a number of things that happened that seems to have led me to being in that room, meeting Aureen.

I'll admit there were a few tears at the start of the psychometry reading, as it was very emotional (and unexpected, as I had no idea she was a Spiritualist), but overall the experience was a very positive one that left me feeling much happier and looking forward to what 2009 will bring. :0)