|On a personal note...||
was born in Kingsport, and later moved to my mother’s native
country, Costa Rica in Central America. I lived there, where I
was primarily a teacher, for over 20 years before returning to
I have two daughters, and one spoiled dog, (whose favorite spot is beside whoever sits still the longest). I love to read, and enjoy music of all kinds. I believe in returning to a more basic lifestyle, though I recognize that modern life makes that very difficult.
I am a whole foods chef, and at one time owned my own pastry shop and catering business. I have curbed my sweet tooth tendencies significantly, but am happily resigned to being a chocoholic! I am a member of several unique groups of special people who value learning, natural health, quality food, and fun. I love proving to people that healthy organic food can be delicious.
I have rediscovered the joys of organic gardening, though I’m not sure about the fun in working with red clay. I anxiously await each spring to see what will come up after the deer, chipmunks, and squirrels have finished redesigning my garden. I get a real thrill watching baby rabbits and fledgling birds emerge from the messy “left to nature” areas of my yard. My yard is a certified wildlife habitat, and since I have built it, they have come!
My daughter reminds me that I cannot be picky about which wildlife creatures accept my invitation—this, when groundhogs & raccoons help themselves to my tomatoes, chipmunks make off with the green beans, turtles enjoy the strawberries, and the deer simply eat everything - once even pulling an apple tree out of the ground! But, I am nothing if not persistent. Each year I expand my home vegetable gardening efforts, and am filling my yard with edibles such as asparagus, berries, fruit trees, and more. And, I am slowly but surely figuring out how to thwart the garden robbers!
I love being outside, and when not working, my favorite spot “in” the house is a covered patio from which I can enjoy the butterflies, birds, gardens, woods, and ever changing parade of wildlife. I am currently learning about all the ways in which we humans benefit physically, emotionally, and mentally, from what I call “playing in the dirt”. It is exciting to find out that many of the benefits go far beyond just the feel good aspect. From natural sunlight, to beneficial organisms in the soil, to experiencing the balancing energy fields of the earth itself, the more I learn, the more I realize how little we know.
I think life is an adventure. Mine sure has been. As I grow older, I am more certain than ever that in order to live life on your own terms, you must safeguard your health. In doing so, you can hold on to your independence longer and continue to enjoy doing the things you love. Instead of spending your golden years in doctor’s offices and hospitals, invest your effort now in getting healthy. Good health is truly priceless, and true wellness is the most precious gift of all. There is nothing I would rather do than help you become the healthiest person you can be.
In Memory of my Abuela MenchaMy grandmother, Abuela Mencha, (abuela is Spanish for grandmother) was a tiny woman with piercing blue eyes. Although she was usually mild mannered, caring and dedicated, she was strong willed and had a temper that could stop a train in its tracks! And I knew her best after she had mellowed a bit!
She was a self-taught naturopath who became her community’s health care provider of choice.
Her wealth of knowledge about nutrition and natural healing continues to amaze me, as I read about “new” discoveries that she was telling me about 30 years ago! She didn’t often understand the science behind her remedies and therapies - she only knew that they worked. I can’t tell you what a thrill it has been for me each time I come across research that reveals the science and confirms the efficacy of those remedies! She also practiced organic gardening (she could make a stick grow & blossom!), had a fantastic compost pile system (the first compost pile I had ever seen!), and was the queen of recycling. Her no-nonsense approach to life could sometimes be startling in its candor, and she had no patience for dishonesty, whining or excuses. She believed that although life might throw unexpected surprises at you at any time, it was up to each person to make the best of the situation, and that much of what happens to us is determined by the choices we make.
She passed away in 2007 after 105 years of exceptional health and vitality.
Because I learned so much from her and so much of her philosophy is mine, Healthier Solutions is hers, too.