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Get Healthy Naturally with Jennifer Schmid | Speaker.  Healer.  Nurse.  Naturopath. 

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Oasis Wellness Radio

Our latest blogs and podcasts on earth-based medicine, current trends in healthcare, and finding the balance.

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The Breathlessness of Grief

Jennifer Schmid

More than I have ever seen in my life, this latest American presidential election has broken hearts. It occasionally brought out the best in people, but it mostly elicited some really nasty behavior and hate speech.

There is so much grief, fear, desperation and frustration out there. These emotions can actually be harmful to our health and well-being, but there are steps we can take to honor our grief, steps that can help us heal from our sense of loss and/or sadness.

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Creating Space, Creating Joy

Jennifer Schmid

Sometimes the only way that we can welcome changes into our lives is by creating space for them to live and breathe. If our fridge is full of take-out containers, pizza boxes, soda cans, and shriveled apples, we have no place to put the grass-fed beef, mineral water, beet salad, or fresh kale. Likewise, as we discussed in the previous blog, we might need to get rid of old habits that are not serving us in order to try out a new one.

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Home, sweet home

Justin Wood

Finally, some warm weather. No, scratch that. Perfect weather. I just about froze my tootsies off this morning in SF... the fog was still rolling in at 10am, and that wind! It goes right through me, right to my bones, no matter what I am wearing (and admittedly, I wasn't wearing very many layers today, and I didn't even have socks on, because I'm ready for spring!).

It's amazing how many different climates there are in the Bay Area, let alone SF. I stopped at a friend's house on the way back home this afternoon, and it was already ten degrees warmer there on the SE side of the City, not too many miles away as the crow flies. By the time I made it home, it was 70 degrees. Finally.

For those of you following Yogamama's Virtual Yogarians blog, you know that I've been writing over there this month as part of her annual April Challenge. I can really feel it in my arms today! I guess I spent a little too much time in downward dog yesterday.

Instead, the warm weather called me outside this afternoon, and I headed over to hike the Stanford Dish around 4:30pm.


It was so beautiful. The hills are finally green from the late spring rains, and the views today? To die for. To the north, even though the fog was creeping over the hills, I could see all the way to the silhouettes of the skyscrapers in downtown SF and everything in between. To the east, I could see Mt. Diablo, all the bridges, and even, in the distance, the outline of the windmills on Altamont Pass. To the south, the buildings on top of Mt. Hamilton and Mt. Umunhum reflected in the sunlight, with no smog to speak of, and to the west, as I said, the fog extended over the tree-filled hills like little ghostly fingertips. Hard to believe that Mt. Hamilton was covered in snow not too many days ago.

I was overwhelmed with the feeling of being home. This is my home. This has always been my home.

Days like today make me so grateful to be back in northern California, in all its glory. I know, I know, I complain about sitting for hours at red lights that are out of sync, or the ridiculously inflated housing prices thanks to the inexperienced 20-something homebuyers from Facebook and Google who are cashing in on their stock options, or the fact that I do have to wear a scarf and a parka in the middle of June when the fog comes rolling in like a tsunami. But there is something magical about "hiking the Dish" (as we call it) on a day like today, when a thousand different worlds come dancing together.

You look down in all directions and see the huge Stanford campus... I feel a pride when I look at the hospital, thinking about my work as a student there... not to mention Hoover Tower, the most phallic building on the West Coast! You see the buildings of companies like VMWare, biotech firms with huge solar panels on top, the VA Hospital, NASA, etc., and in the other direction, this huge satellite dish looming over you, with Interstate 280 not too far beyond it. [Incidentally, I have no idea what the Dish does... a friend told me that they use it to search for contact from alien life forms. (I think she's pulling the old, "Did you know that the word 'gullible' isn't in the dictionary?" trick on me.)] You have the bridges and the skyscrapers, so tiny in the distance, but still so powerful. And then you have the nature... the green hills with the grazing cows, the already thigh-high prickly milk thistle and mustard growing off the path, the orange poppies and calendula dotting the hillside, those fat little squirrels scampering around, and the deer keeping their distance.

If home is where the heart is, then mine is scattered in various places across the world. Today my heart grew a thousand-fold, as I tapped into the roots that had been planted years ago, when I wasn't paying attention.

In my gratitude, I am paying attention.


By the way, fellow bloggers, Wordpress isn't allowing me to link any websites to my posts. (The link button is deactivated.) Any suggestions?

Bloggin' again

Justin Wood

This month I'm blogging over on the Virtual Yogarians page as part of Yogamama's Yoga Challenge. Here's the link to my first post. Check it out, and enjoy! (Note: for some reason Wordpress is not letting me add this as a link, so you'll just have to cut and paste it into your browser tab. Sorry about that!)


The most important speech of our time

Justin Wood

I am posting this link because I truly believe it is the most important public statement of our time, and one that will get little to no press. It is a long read but worth every minute that it takes you. I hope that 30 years from now, we will all know that because of courageous people like Tim DeChristopher, we were able to turn things around in this country before corporations and politicians completely flushed us all down the toilet. Please share this link on your various tweets, walls, and blogs. This is powerful medicine for our diseased state of affairs.

The ritual of sleep

Justin Wood

Do you every feel as if you are undergoing some sort of initiation, rituals which, if you pass, will take you to the next level of your development as a human being? I'm at that point right now. Knowing deep down that I can somehow make it, but having trouble finding the will to want to make it.

Today is day something of my cleanse. 16? 17? I have lost count. All I know is that Tuesday is my last day, and then I will start incorporating -- slowly, oh, so slowly -- grains, dairy, and other foods back into my life again.

The problem is, on a cleanse, you are supposed to rest, because you naturally feel tired when your body and psyche are cleaning house and getting rid of all that old stuff that doesn't belong there anymore.

At the beginning of the cleanse I felt a bit like Wonder Woman, with a will of steel. (OK, except on that day I was being chased by a large piece of dark chocolate.) Now my will falters as my energy falters. My patience is faltering. Life is simply getting in the way.

Sleep deprivation is the worst sort of initiation there is, don't you think? The last two nights I have been wakened at obscene hours by my children. I am used to waking in the night because of them, but the last two nights have been particularly difficult. On Wednesday night, Nadia woke at 3am crying with a fever and stomachache, and I spent the rest of the night (morning?) comforting her and doing energy work to alleviate the nausea so that she could finally fall asleep again around 6:30. Then this morning, after not getting to bed until 11, Luke woke me up at 5:00 with his tossing and turning and snoring.

I know. I should have gotten up to take advantage of being awake to do yoga. But instead, I went and tried to sleep in Nadia's bed (since she was again in our bed), though as you probably know, falling back asleep for 20 minutes seldom does anyone any good. It actually made me feel worse. The will, however, was simply lacking. My brain said, "get up," and my body said, "I don't think so."

Right now I can feel the pressure beginning to mount again, the pressure of wanting to just sleep dammit, the pressure of having all this studying to do, of needing to move and do yoga, of mama-guilt, of wife-guilt, of needing to see more clients so we don't bounce the rent check, and yet the tools I need to release the pressure are simply not available. Is this part of the initiation, to teach myself how to dig even deeper to find the light and love that are the whole reason for being?

Spring Cleaning, Day 11

Justin Wood

I'm having a roller coaster day today, vacillating between being really stressed out and feeling really good. Today's schedule is typically hectic, and just getting the kids where they need to be at the right time -- while still trying to find some study and yoga time -- has been, well, trying. On the other hand, I enjoyed some salmon for lunch, I got in 90 minutes of quality study time (which certainly beats last Saturday's o minutes), and Heather and Emma are coming over for dinner tonight. My energy is fairly high, especially now that I've done yoga today, and I'm officially halfway through with the cleanse.

My friend, G, is doing a 21-day no-complaining challenge. What a feat! I think the Purification Program and the April Yoga Challenge are way easier to accomplish, especially in our culture of contagious misery. But since I'm on this road to make myself stronger -- physicially, emotionally and spiritually -- I might as well throw in one more challenge and see where it leads me.

You're right... I already know where. And it's a good place.

Spring Cleaning: Day 10

Justin Wood

Today I wrote as part of my dear friend, Kathleen's yoga blog. (Kathleen is the one I refer to lovingly as "Yogamama.") Let's see, if I do the link right, you can click on this link to see it. Hope you are having as beautiful a day as I am!

Spring Cleaning: Day 8

Justin Wood

Today I started Day 8 of my first ever spring cleanse. I am "house" cleaning, but not just any house. My house. My living, breathing physical body. It's definitely time. There is so much yeast inside me, I could probably start a very successful brewery.

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The real reason I stopped musing on Facebook

Justin Wood

A few weeks ago I posted on Facebook that I was going to take a "hiatus" from it so that I could concentrate on nursing school. This was only partly true. Well, actually, it wasn't true at all.

Recently, as if a part of a rejected South Park episode, I was censured for one of my status updates.

Yes, I was censured. Not just scolded for what I had posted, but told -- it was highly recommended -- that I not post anything like that again. Or else. Apparently, I am more powerful than I think, and I should not be posting openly on FB.

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Sacred Forest

Justin Wood

This past week I spent four days up in Big Trees with the hubby and three kids. It was our first family vacation ever that did not involve visiting other family members. But that's another blog... After having enjoyed the beauty and fresh water of Lake Alpine on Monday and the depths of the Mercer Caverns on Tuesday, on Wednesday we headed to the South Grove of Big Trees State Park.

I made sure not to tell anyone it involved a five mile hike where we would be looking at, well, big trees.

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Justin Wood

My favorite sweater is unraveling. This is not some cheap acrylic and nylon "sweater" that I picked up at Target, but the real deal, an intricate, hand-woven beauty that took many hours of love and labor.

I'm not sure when the thread got snagged, but sure enough, there is a very large hole now, one that I can no longer ignore, or simply patch up in a way that no one will notice.

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