Archive for August, 2010

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Syrup Alternatives to Agave

August 30, 2010

This picture is from my Chicago apt- I don't have any from my Santa Monica apt. yet!

Hey Guys!

Hope you had a great weekend!! It’s still only the end of August dammit- we can still hold on to summer!! 🙂 I love my apt. now in Santa Monica!

I headed down to Newport Beach to visit some clients at a beautiful spa there, and had some nice beach walks.

I also caught up with an old friend I hadn’t seen in a while. She was a travel buddy that I met in Australia, and we would periodically meet up on the road. Some adventures we shared include camping on frozen ground in Nepal in January (!), sharing a bungalow in Thailand and having a zillion dead bugs rain down on us when we let down the mosquito net, exploring some random deserted islands in the Philippines with only a few fishing families living on them, and taking a small plane around Mount Everest. She almost killed me when her ocean kayak flew right by my head when we were getting huge air kayaking in Byron Bay, up the coast of Australia, and we also touched the Great Barrier Reef in Australia together for the first time… she also came back to visit me when in Sydney after I was working there after college. With all the craziness we’ve been through- or should I say survived- we’ll always be super close, and when I see her its as if no time has passed!

So back to thoughts around the kitchen… I started drastically cutting back on agave over a year ago, and stopped it cold turkey a few months ago. Agave is highly processed and is a very high percentage fructose. Despite its being advertised as being low-glycemic and a “natural” alternative, it really isn’t a viable option for those of us that want to look and feel our best. I recommend you cut it out completely as well! Also, be sure to check labels. I was in Wholefoods in Venice the other day looking at the labels of raw food products, and almost every single one had agave in it!! If we all start to shun it I think hopefully eventually manufacturers will have to switch!

Stevia and xyletol are good dry, powdered sweetener alternatives. Liquid stevia is very concentrated and you drop it out with a little dropper. But how to replace agave for liquid needs?

Organic dried or dehydrated fruit is a great source of natural sugar that comes right from nature off the tree or the bush! Be sure to purchase varieties that are free of sulfites and other preservatives, and don’t have any additional added preservatives.

Lately I’ve been using dates, figs and raisins, and I make a syrup/paste by adding water. I start with 1-2 Tbs of water and blend with the dried fruit, then add more depending on how thin I need the syrup to be and what I’m using it for. Soaked nuts combine okay with dried fruit, so depending on what you are making, you can also add some of the oilier seeds and nuts for texture. These include sunflower seeds, hazelnuts and almonds.

Dried fruits should be used in moderation (or avoided altogether for those with Candida or sugar issues), as they do have a high concentration of sugar, but they are easy for our bodies to digest and break down. They also have some health benefits as well:

Photo courtesy of http://www.blogs.chron.com

Dates: High in calcium, also contains copper, iron, amino acids, Vitamin A, and some riboflavin and thiamin.

Figs: High in potassium! Contains mucin and pectin, and have detoxifying and blood-cleansing properties. Also contains calcium and magnesium.

Photo courtesy or http://www.eyeonspain.com

Raisins: Contains iron, potassium, calcium, silica, magnesium, Vitamins A, B1, B2, B3, B6, C, zinc and amino acids.

Give these little “candies” of nature a go, and see how you do!

Have a wonderful early part of your week!!

See you soon.

Love, Kimberly

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The Balance of Nature and Hollywood in LA

August 26, 2010

Hey loves!

Hope all is well with you.

LA to me is a combination of the wonderful nature all around (desert and all!) and of course the obvious and enormous entertainment aspect of the city. What is so interesting to me is that most people I meet here are either really into the natural elements and ocean, OR are highly involved in the entertainment world and sometimes seem to be oblivious or don’t really pay attention to some of the natural wonders around.

I enjoy the balance of both! I love the trees and flowers, and interesting plants. I love being able to pick scrunchy looking natural lemons from the local trees in all the various shapes and sizes nature created them in, and being able to go down to the ocean every evening to watch the sunset.

But I do enjoy aspects of the entertainment world here, of course, which is part of what I do. On Monday night I went to the premiere for the film Going the Distance. It comes out Sept. 3rd. It was great and you should go see it! Very relatable and real!! I loved it and thought it was adorable. Since a lot of the movie takes place in New York, seeing the scenery really made me miss it!

PS: If you scroll down you might notice I wore the same outfit to the Emmy’s party the night before. 🙂 Oops! I just moved into a new apt. in Santa Monica and I couldn’t be bothered to go through all my stuff and find my dresses and other clothes. Hee hee….our secret!! 🙂 Very NOT Hollywood I guess to be seen at two events in the same outfit!! (gasp!)

I have to say I thoroughly enjoy the drum circles down at Venice Beach. I love percussion of all types, especially since my long journey through Africa where I could hear drums everywhere I went!

Plus I love seeing people like this um Native American-eque (?) guy!! 🙂

Rock on my friends!

Life is so interesting! I am taking in my new surroundings, and I am starting to really love it here!! There are always positives and negatives to anywhere you go, but there is so much beauty around everywhere in creation if we pause to feel it.

Have a great rest of your week!! Keep seeing the beauty all around… and in each other- we are all the ONE.

Love,

Kimberly

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Skin and My Other Product Obsessions Of the Moment

August 23, 2010

Last night I went to an Emmy's party in Hollywood. The first person I met right when I walked in the door, through a friend of a friend, was Kathy Griffin! I admire her courage and just putting whatever she is thinking out there, and for being a strong woman! I'm a fan. I'm wearing the Sally B's natural lipgloss here in Ruby's Red.

Heeelloooo there!!

Hope you had a great weekend! I just finished my first week here, which was amazing! It was busy, but very successful. Again, the past week sort of feels like a month, because so much happens and my days are so full. The days never blur together. Isn’t time funny how it can seem to fly by or slow down?

I have noticed my skin freaking out a bit since I’ve gotten to LA. I am not a huge fan of the dessert climate, but what are you going to do? In the summer I usually don’t put any lotion at all on my body, but here my legs started getting flakey, almost immediately. I feel the moisture being leached right out—–eek!! I’ve been doubling up during the day with coconut oil as a lotion.

I really love the Artisana brand’s coconut oil, which is free of pesticides, artificial flavors, colors, preservatives, stabilizers, added oils, GMO’s. Coconut butter is the coconut meat ground up, but coconut oil is only the oil pressed out, and that is what you want to use on your skin rather than the coconut butter.

By the way, the Artisana has a great raw tahini! I used it yesterday to make my Raw Chickpea-less hummus for a party yesterday.

I was given a bottle of Burt’s Bees Naturally Nourishing Milk and Honey Body Lotion, which is decent. It sort of creeps me out that there is milk (dairy!!) in there, and I found that I had to keep applying it to make my skin feel anywhere near “naturally nourished.”

The quest continues to find a good paraben-free body lotion! For now I’ll just stick to the coconut oil.

I managed to squeeze in getting to the steamroom at a very luxurious, organic spa the other day, because I miss the humidity of Chicago and New York so much!! Call me crazy, but I love the moisture on my skin. It makes me feel moisturized, rather than my skin is being choked of every last drop of its precious natural water!

I’m totally obsessed with the Ojon hair products now. They are awesome because they don’t contain parabens, sulfates, synthetic dyes, phthalates, GMO’s, or triclosan. Here are my faves: The Ojon Restorative Pre-Cleansing Treatment, Ojon Ultra Hydrating Shampoo, and Ojon Ultra Hydrating Conditioner. You can get it straight from their website, www.ojon.com, or at Sephora.

And speaking of Sephora, you know how everybody gets those little tins of lipgloss/moisturizer that they sell at the front? They seem so innocent because they are strawberry flavored (I think) and are labeled as “natural.” I can’t remember the name because I never use them…because they are all petroleum-based! Terrible for the collagen in the lips. My advice? Chuck ‘em right now!

When I was working on a movie in April in Atlanta, I found a great brand down there called Sally B’s Skin Yummies. I now use their B Glossy Organic Lip Gloss, which not only moisturizes, my lips, but it is a pretty color and has a great smell/taste. Check out the ingredients: Organic Castor Oil, Organic Shea Butter, Organic Beeswax, Vitamin E, Carneuba Wax, Organic Lecithin, Mica, Peppermint.

I use Ruby’s Red. I keep one in my purse and one in my bathroom. Love!! Their website is www.sallybskinyummies.com.

Speaking of lips, I love the non-toxic lipgloss by the Christopher Drummond line (www.christopherdrummond.com). Here are the ingredients: Castor oil, coconut oil, soybean oil, beeswax, candella wax, mica, iron oxides, Tocopherol (Vitamin E).

My favorite is Carnival, which I think is so pretty. It feels and looks great!!

Enjoy! I’ll write more soon!!!!

Lots of love, Kimberly

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Interview with Vital Juice, NYC!

August 19, 2010

Hi Guys!

I hope you’re week is going well! Mine has just flown by! What a whirlwind- I can’t believe it is Thursday already (it is right??I don’t really keep track of days right now 🙂 ). I’ve been cranking it up with my people out here, and last night I gave a 3-hour nutrition lecture in a private theater.

I made a bunch of different raw food for people to sample, including cacao mousse, fresh hazelnut milk, raw beet raviolis, raw buckwheat granola, raw pancakes (a huge hit!) and different dips, etc.

I did an interview for Vital Juice a few days ago, which got cut down a lot as all interviews do…but I thought you guys would enjoy it!

Click on the link here: VITAL JUICE INTERVIEW

I’ll report back soon!

Lots of love,

Kimberly

I'm starting to feel my way and adjust to my new life here in LA for the next few months...

And I'm really excited and happy!!

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Changes and Being Non-Attached

August 15, 2010

These were all taken my last night in Chicago, Thursday night, on my porch overlooking the city. This is where I would practice yoga- when I could fit asanas (poses) in! 🙂 Otherwise, I would just meditate, which is what I REALLY can't do without.

My yoga practice gives me stability and grounding in my life.

Hi there,

I hope you are had an awesome weekend!

I’m writing to you from my parents’ house outside NYC, where I had a relaxing weekend of hiking and just hanging out. It was like a mini calm in the eye of the storm! I got back from Chicago Friday morning and had a crazy day running around New York that day, trying to finish a million errands and fit in a bunch of meetings. Now I’m leaving for LA tomorrow morning…for an indefinite amount of time.

Each yoga pose makes you feel a different way. Warrior 2 makes me feel really strong- stand in your truth!

In so many ways, I am unbelievably grateful and excited! I am living my dream and my passion as a nutritionist. I get to teach others about my nutritional philosophy and being healthy from a holistic standpoint, and the difference I see in others is incredibly rewarding. I get to work with amazing and fascinating people who do interesting and creative things in the world in film, music, etc.

But in order to really soar, I have had to cut ties and leave behind some things that I really love in New York. The first and hardest was giving up my group yoga classes, which I have been teaching for 4 years exactly this month. I love my students so much, and all these new opportunities came up so quickly I didn’t really have time to say goodbye. If any of my students are reading this, please realize that I went to Chicago for only a week, and then my clients and movie work really took off, and I couldn’t come home until now, a month later. I will always love you all and will come visit when I can! And I still get to teach clients privately.

Inversions for me represent getting over fear in life and pushing forward into unknown territory to grow. When the world seems to turn you upside down, you can still be stand strong in your life- even it if it is upside down!

Now some amazing opportunities have come up that are dreams come true for me out in LA. 🙂 I am still going to keeping my apt in NY, and I am staying in a hotel the first week in LA, then looking for a place in LA for after that… I also had to give up my yoga classes that I love to take myself, some of which are from my very dear friends in NY and which I love very much. I am giving up seeing my friends, teaching Sunday School at my meditation center, visiting my favorite parks that are always playing live  music… really my life as I know it now in New York.

It is not that I am moving to LA permanently, it may be just a few months, but there has been a major shift in my life where I have to cut out ties so that I can really soar. I can’t be attached in any way with any ongoing weekly commitments…so I can just move and fly around with my clients as needed all around the country and world! I’ll also be moving a lot when my book comes out early next year! It is sort of like how I felt like when I was backpacking… but now I am staying in one city for at least a few months at a time. This is why I can’t have a dog! And I love and am incredibly grateful that by the grace of God I can see and do so much, and I will live it up until the day that I decide to have children…which will maybe be in a few years. 🙂

I think as humans, and especially us women, it is really easy to get attached to people and things, even when we are yogis and conscious of the idea of attachment. I know I do! So tonight, on the eve of leaving for my next big adventure, I am feeling a bit jittery. I am excited, sad, nervous, thrilled, joyful, overwhelmed with gratefulness and sort of feel like I’m going to puke… all at the same time! I have to let go of everything, and trust that I am on the right path. It feels right, and I know that I am following my dream, and yes, standing in my truth.

Lots of love to all, and especially my beloved yoga students that I will always love and who will always be in my heart!

Love, Kimberly

Om namah shivaya. Amen. Shanti. OM.

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How to Eat at a Ball Game or Concert!

August 12, 2010

Hey Guys!

Hope all is well and this week is going awesome for you.

Sometimes people ask me if it hard for me to eat in certain situations out in public…and I always say no! Why? Because I always plan ahead. Interestingly, last weekend I went to TWO classic examples of events that one might think would be difficult to eat at: The baseball game and a concert. I’ll show you how I deal!

Here I am at the Cubs game in the press box, with the wonderful Ron Howard (over my left shoulder in background) , who sang a great rendition of “Take Me Out to the Ball Game” for the 7th inning stretch.

And here I am at Lalapalooza, which is a huge 3-day music festival with 95,000+ people a day. It went all day into the night, so it did require extra effort to bring food and plan for the long haul.

The options at ball games and concerts are not really options for me (!), so you can be sure I thought it out in advance!

Blast from the past- Green Day! I loved them when I was in middle school. 🙂

Through the movies I’m working on, some of us got all-access passes, which was great because we got free water and beverages all day, and got to hang out in the lounge areas designated for the bands and their crews.

There were free food tents in these areas- with buffet lines full of items like pork chops, baked potatoes, rolls, butter and baked chicken. As you’ve probably guessed- you weren’t going to find me in line at that buffet!!

I had a backpack full of  my own goodies, so I didn’t have to starve, and as an added bonus I didn’t have to feel like crap either. 🙂 I certainly didn’t feel deprived- actually I felt extremely grateful that I know what to eat to feel satisfied and great.

First I started off with a bunch of cherries, which are my favorite summer fruit and in full abundance here in Chicago. I also brought a bunch of cherries into the Cubs game. Fruit first!!

I packed a few collard green wraps with a raw mushroom “burger”, which was a pate I made with mushroom, onion, celery and spices I made in my food processor and then put in the dehydrator. I topped it with mustard, sprouts and veggies. Yummy!! Great concert food. At the Cubs’ game I knew we had fridges in the box so I had a ginormous salad instead.

And you know I wouldn’t go without my travel staple- an avocado!! I love it when I cut them in half and they are perfect and not mushy and that gorgeous green color with no splotchy brown pieces. I like having it because it is fatty and creamy and really feels like I’m eating. I just spoon that sucker right out of there!

No need to indulge in the Ben & Jerry’s ice cream truck that was in the lounge giving out free ice cream~ Just say no thanks to pasteurized and homogenized and clogging and mucus-forming dairy!!!!!!! In ALL forms.

Here’s my old time love 🙂 Chirs Cornell and the rest of Soundgarden walking through the lounge and getting on stage. Still a total rockstar!

More adventures to report soon!

Take care, stay hydrated…and SENDING LOTS OF LOVE RIGHT AT YOU!

xx Kimberly

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Travel Log: My Food Loves and Non-Loves of the Cities I’ve Been to in the last 30 Days

August 9, 2010

Hey Guys,

Hope you had a great weekend! I love this time of year. Sometimes the summer seems to fly by and I wonder where it all went, but this year is the opposite for me. So much has been jammed in for each day, and especially in the last 30 days, that I almost can’t believe it… This time 30 days ago I was at the Ann Wigmore Institute in Puerto Rico!! That seems like ages ago. Since then I’ve put down roots for the summer in Chicago to work as the nutritionist on some films, and I had a whirlwind film press tour to Europe. Yowzah!! I’ve been working to keep it all together- though I am reminded of my backpacking days when sometimes I wake up and have to think for a minute what country/city I am in!

I had a great weekend at Lalapalooza (through the movie we got all access backstage passes. More on that later! 🙂 ) and went to the Cub’s game yesterday to hear Ron Howard lead the 7th inning stretch soon. Today I’ve had a second to sit down and actually write, which I haven’t been able to really do in well- the last 30 days! Again it seems more like 4 months! So here I am, trying to process my journeys of late, and especially my journeys with food. Below are my reflections on some of the places I’ve been to in the last month, and what I personally like and disliked the most about the food aspect of each place (in random order):

Chicago, IL:

Love: There are some vegetarian restaurants! I like the Karyn’s restaurants a lot- she has a raw café (good), a vegetarian café (my least favorite as much of the menu contains soy) and a fancier restaurant with raw and cooked vegetarian options (my fave). I also love that there is a Wholefoods on the block where I am staying- as I am in there once or twice every single day! The cherries I’ve been getting her rock my world! And I love how the produce and prices are cheaper than in New York.

Non-Love: I am grateful there is that Wholefoods, but I must say that it is lacking in lots of key ingredients I use. I have to go once or twice a week to the speciality health stores around the city to get things like buckwheat grouts, untoasted nori warppers, etc. I am spoiled by NY that so much is so readily available and easy to find.  And help! I am being swallowed in by deep-dish pizza and sub joints! 🙂

Rincon, Puerto Rico:

Love: The fruit!!! The best are the avocados, papayas, pineapples and bananas. The fruit is fresh and juicy. And let’s not forget my fave!! The mighty, powerful young coconut! They seemed to drop down magically for me to eat and drink just when I’d want them.

Non-Love: If you don’t make your own food there, you’re kind of screwed. You can forget about easily finding lots of greens or salads that consist of more than a few sad strips of iceberg lettuce with a few tomato slivers. I’d have to order like 20 of them to make the size of a salad I usually eat at home. And vegetarian dishes- nada!! The rice and beans have chicken stock in them- and besides are too heavy to eat lots of anyways. You’d get fat if you ate all the traditional fried fare. I recommend getting a hotel room with a mini-fridge, and bringing a cutting board, Vitamix and a few spices. You can make Green Smoothie and salads with whatever greens you can scrounge up from at the grocery store!

London, England:

Love: Since London is of course the big city in England, I had easy access to fruit like apples and pears, and veggies like celery and romaine lettuce. The plums there are delicious! Lots of little produce markets around in case I needed a few emergency lemons or celery.

Non-Love: No kale! It was difficult to find a wide variety of greens, as I think a lot is imported into there. There are now Wholefoods in London. I didn’t go to any restaurants to eat on this trip (though I crashed some 5-star kitchens to make my own food for my people- what a crazy experience that was, with French chefs swearing and fire in pans and angry, frenetic clanking and craziness all around. I’m so happy I don’t eat in restaurants like that!), so I’m not sure what the vege scene is like nowadays!

Dublin, Ireland:

Love: Sorry my Irish loves, but I have to say this was a very hard city for me! There were uh, good sundried tomatoes I got my hands on though!

Non-Love: When we landed off the jet I requested 3 heads of romaine be put in my mini-fridge so I could make food immediately upon arrival. I knew I was in trouble when I arrive to find barely 3 leaves in my fridge. 🙂 I couldn’t really find organic produce, and the range was very limited. It was also very expensive. It would be very expensive to live in Ireland and eat the enormous amounts of plants I usually eat!

View from my hotel room in Mallorca Spain. In the distance is the yacht we rode on!

Looking down the stairs in my hotel. Love the Spanish architecture!

Mallorca, Spain:

Love: The fresh black olives! They were beautiful and heavenly and I used them in some dishes while I was there. Great avocados also! All the produce I could get my hands on was fresh and I made lots of great salads and dishes right in my hotel room, overlooking the beautiful Mediterranean! with a view like that, and surrounded in energy like that, how could the produce not taste amazing?

Non-Love: All the slabs of meat! They followed by everywhere- sliced up on plates at the hotel, on the yacht, even on the jet and in the airport. Very traditional I know- but they just looked really butchered and yucky and dead. The white fat spots in the slices of salami and cold cuts made me want to barf! Just not for me!

Madrid, Spain:

Love: The traditional gazpacho soup. Yummy!

Non-Love: The same slabs of meat I saw in Mallorca seemed to follow me to Madrid… like a bad dream!! And though it doesn’t have to do with food, I have to say that I give all types of bull-fighting a huge thumbs DOWN.

Notice how my own “home” city of New York is not on the list. Have not been home all month! (except for a few days between Puerto Rico and leaving for Chicago). My NY friends, say hi to it for me! I have a full week ahead back here in Chicago, so time to get reorganized so I can sleep a bit more this week (that would be nice!).

Lots of love!!!!! Have a wonderful week!!

Kimberly

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Get it While You Can! Vitamix Special!

August 3, 2010

Click on photo to order your Vitamix and save an additional $25.00

Hi Loves, I got an email about this and couldn’t resist throwing up a quick blog about it. The Vitamix is my heart in the kitchen- and as you know, is the only piece of kitchen equipment I literally carry around the world with me. It will change your life, your health, your beauty.

For a limited time, Vitamix is running a special on the Vitamix 5200, selling the factory reconditioned machines for $379.00.  These guys only come on special every so often and they usually go fast and sell out! So if you’ve been really wanting one but have been hedging, now is the time!

If you click on the photo above, you’ll receive free standard shipping which is worth $25US/$35CN.

In Saint Stephen's Park, Dublin

My schedule hasn’t slowed down any since I’ve gotten back! I’m being very organized (okay trying!) with the constant soaking and sprouting of various seeds and nuts- based on certain recipes I’m making the next day or in a few days.

What’s my favorite kitchen ingredient right now? Sundried tomatoes! I throw them in sauces, salads, dressings, as garnishes, etc. They taste like sun in a bite to me.

Well I’ll write more soon! Check out the Vitamix sale if you haven’t gotten one yet- you won’t regret. And have a wonderful and inspirational week!!

All my love,

Kimberly

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Finding Food, Making Food on the Go(!) Across Europe!

August 2, 2010

At the famed Soho Hotel in London, making the Glowing Green Smoothie!

Hi Guys!

I hope you had a wonderful week last week!

I had an unbelievable time in Europe working on a whirlwind press tour for a film. We were moving so fast, that when we got to a city I had to really hit the ground running. I called ahead to request certain food be sitting in my minibar in each of the hotels, but there was always shopping I had to do, and things I had to source on the go. It was incredibly stressful at times, and I slept about 2 hours a night- but what an experience!! So fun!! And crazy.

Here’s my mini bar in London. If I had 10 minibars, I’m sure I would have filled them all! I wondered if any of these 5 star hotels ever had as much food made in them?! Btw we flew on a commercial jet First Class to London, and I made food right there in my seat on the way as well!

Here’s my room in Dublin. The table where I would chop and assemble things, and desk area was Vitamix central!

Taken from my hotel window in Dublin…There was always a fleet of black cars taking us around from place to place!

The Dublin premiere was insane.  Hundreds and hundreds of people were lined up in the streets! I had to walk the red carpet myself as I got out of the car and went up ahead, and I have to say that I’ve never had an experience like that with so many people screaming behind a fence, while you are in a little clear passageway. I’ve been to lots of premieres in LA and NY- but none like this one!

On and off the private jet! No need to go through customs! What I really liked was that our bags were labeled and picked up in our rooms, and then delivered to the next hotel room seamlessly! I know they are not great for the environment, but it certainly wasn’t my call! And I don’t see how we would have been able to move around to so many different press events so quickly if not for flying on our own time.

This is my view from my hotel room on the beautiful island of Mallorca, Spain. Gorgeous!!! I’ve been to Spain, but Mallorca is definitely my favorite spot in the country! Also, you do get a bit spoiled traveling like this :).

Below is where the party and the press line were later on that night…

Over to the right is the little boat that took us out to the yacht in the distance… It was beyond magical to be in the Mediterranean on a yacht, surrounded by beautiful Spanish people. I love everything about Spain- the energy, the culture, their look. Well, everything but their cuts and slabs of red meat that are so prevalent! I did bring food on the yacht by the way!

This table became my main food-making station in my room in Mallorca.

Or on the floor! One of my biggest issues was getting the converters to work so I could use the Vitamix in all the countries… Okay after this I stopped taking a lot of pics.

Anyways I am now back in Chicago for a few more weeks working on the movies. Promise to get back to some real nutrition, beauty and health posts soon!

Oddly energized, even with so very little sleep…and of course Lots of love, Kimberly