The Aware Body
THE AWARE BODY NEWS                                                 Jan/Feb 2010top
"The art of medicine consists in amusing the patient while nature cures the disease."  -Voltaire (1694-1778)

Welcome to the Jan/Feb Newsletter!
Mary Serphos
Clearly it's winter! Here in Northern California, the sky has been gray for three weeks straight and in New York and New England, it has been bone chilling cold but sunny.  I say a little bit of winter is ok but too much cold and gray gets even the most die hard winter-lovers down. Usually at this point, I am jumping out of my skin, and completely unable to get out of the mid-winter funk.  In this edition of The Aware Body News I have shared some new tips and tools that have helped me this winter and will hopefully put a little sunshine and warmth back into your life.
A lot of new and exciting undertakings have been brewing at The Aware Body and I am overjoyed by the all this growth and new energy.  Many of you know that in November, I completed a work exchange at a holistic retreat center in Mexico where I was able to continue to work with clients via phone in the States- the phone connection was actually superb!  And in between dips in the ocean and working with new clients, I helped plan a nutritionally balanced menu for the center.  Based on a primarily vegetarian and Mexican based theme, the food was flavorful fresh and "riquisimo!" I worked with a professional chef from Argentina named Lucila who was full of energy and created magic in the kitchen.  We learned a lot from one another and as I helped her with the nutritional information such as food combining, and how to create energy/health boosting meals, she taught me more about how to create beautiful baked goods (some gluten-free!) and about the mechanics of cooking.  This wealth of new knowledge and practical tips will be shared through my work with The Aware Body. 
    Sign Up for the Next
 Grocery Store Tour!
The Aware Body Grocery Store Tours have been born! The next one Grocery Store Tourswill be:
February 24th from 
5:30 PM to 7:00 PM
Meet at Whole Foods in San Rafael
It's a great way to learn more about what to buy to make healthful meals on a budget and ask all those questions that have you stumped when you are standing in the aisles deciding what to eat.  I will guide you and challenge you to pick new ingredients to work with and help you bring back joy and excitement to shopping and preparing meals. Besides being informative and lots of fun, our last tour was full of great tips and delicious samples!
Please call 415.412.5490 or email to sign up for this tour where we will shop for and learn about foods that nourish our bodies for the winter
and learn how to eat super healthy on a budget.
Cost: $20 per participant
"Have you ever walked through the aisles of Whole Foods seeing the same possibilities and combinations over and over again?  During my first Grocery Store Tour with Mary I had my eyes opened to a new world of possibilities (new foods and forgotten favorites) that had always been present, but that in the normal routines of life, I overlooked.  I believe Mary's knowledge-base facilitated this shift.  Being able to see new possibilities in a place that feels as familiar as home is a gift I cannot thank her enough for." - Greg T. 

Save the Date for Our
 Next Workshop!

Meredith Klein of Pranaful and I will be hosting another "Create Balance, Embody Joy" workshop to help us get through the last stretch of winter. Save the date...the workshop will be on:
Balance & JoyFebruary 21st. from
2:00 PM - 4:30 PM
Join us for a workshop dedicated to self-care as we shift seasons. Learn the principles and concepts that will inspire you to reconnect with joy and inner wisdom.

*  Uncover ways to gain vitality during the winter season
*  Explore your unique roadmap to joy
*  Learn strategies to remain grounded during times of transition
*  Find out about simple techniques to care for your most prized possession: your body

Cost: $30 workshop fee

Please click here for more details about the workshop and about the rich tools you will come away with.


Survival tips for Winter:  Bring the Sunshine and Warmth Back in your Body!
by Mary Serphos
1.  Liquid Vitamin D! Yes, it's true- all the hype about vitamin D is not nonsense- it really works.  My mood this winter is better than it's ever been and I attribute that to this to Mr. D., my liquid sunshine! Vitamin D also works as an immunity booster- what a winning combination.
2.  Rest! Yes, it's winter and we are meant to slow down this season- think bears and hibernation. Take some extra time during the week and weekend to stop and pause. I know, I know you have families and full time jobs and laundry...but please do you and your family a favor and just chill for a while - it's ok to be a couch potato now and again.
3.  Get up and move! I know it's so cliché to tell you to exercise but truly, that will help you immensely.  Not only will your mood heighten; your appetite will decrease (I know you may think the opposite is true, but in fact, the more you move, the less likely you are to binge or overeat at mealtimes). If the thought of a walk makes you shiver and the thought of going to the gym makes you weep, put on some music and dance like nobody is watching!
4.  Warming Foods. Soups, stews, warm grain bowls, teas, and yes, even coffee will keep you warm to the core. And go ahead and indulge occasionally on a treat that you absolutely can't resist. It will make you smile and you can lose the few extra pounds in the spring. My favorite new warm liquid treat: I put some unsweetened rice milk in a pot on the stove, warm slowly and add a bit of coconut oil, shredded coconut and cocoa powder with a bit of agave and good.
Hot Bath5.  A hot bath, a sauna, a dip in a hot tub will do wonders for the soul. If it's your tub, add some Epsom salts and a bit of oil such as lavender, or olive....then melt, happily.
Warm, Nourishing and Filling Recipe of the Month:  Potato Lentil Curry Soup

Lentil SoupThe following Recipe is from Meredith Klein a wonderful Chef and good friend. Meredith and I put on workshops titled "Create Balance, Embody Joy" and share a passion for healthy eating and living.  Meredith is the founder of Pranaful and is a true master at creating inspired, globally-influenced, organic cuisine.


This recipe is perfect for mid-winter to help warm you from the inside out.  Besides being a totally nourishing, health infusing meal that doesn't cost too much, it can be made in big batches to feed the whole family or to be eaten for days to come.
Potato Lentil Curry Soup
2 t. olive oil
1 medium onion, diced
1.5 c. red lentils, rinsed
2 medium potatoes, cubed
2 T. curry powder
3 c. veggie broth
1 can coconut milk
1.5 t. salt


In a medium stockpot, heat olive oil over medium heat, then cook onion until translucent. Add lentils, potatoes and curry powder, and cook 1-2 minutes stirring often. Add veggie broth and bring to a boil. Then reduce heat, and cook (stirring occasionally) until potatoes can be pierced easily with a fork and lentils are soft but not mushy (note: add a little water during cooking process if too much broth evaporates and lentils begin sticking to bottom of pot). Add coconut milk and salt. Stir well and cook another 3-4 minutes. Taste, and adjust seasonings, adding more curry powder or salt as you like.



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Mary Serphos
The Aware Body
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Survival Tips for Winter
Recipe of the Month
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