Weekly wellness No. 4

Weekly wellness No. 4

A mélange of wellness articles, people, events, food, and things that inspired me this week.

As someone interested in the art of food photography and blogging, the Food Blogger Pro Podcast is my new favorite podcast.

This podcaster, blogger, and and ethical clothing producer….meet my new girl crush behind Daria Daria. (Website in German and English)

I checked this book out from the library last month and have been referencing it for herbal and self-care practice and holistic remedies.

The Whole 30 is nothing new and I’m sure I’m one of the last people to jump on the wagon, but I’ve been reading up on it lately and have been using the main site (as well as others’ whole 30 blogs) to prepare for my own in a few weeks.

Using wellness teas as facial steams?  Yes, please.


Mint chocolate chip smoothie with blackstrap molasses chocolate sauce

Mint chocolate chip smoothie with blackstrap molasses chocolate sauce

If you’re craving the flavor mint chocolate chip but want a healthier version (that’s both vegan and gluten-free), here’s a creamy and just-as-tasty smoothie option for you that you can enjoy any time of the year!

In the Kitchen 101 Series

With every recipe I create, I love to share some behind-the-scenes cooking and nutritional info with the hope of getting you excited and informed about cooking and your health! Today’s takeaways:

The benefits of blackstrap molasses and recipe ideas

My favorite alternatives to refined sugar

Blackstrap molasses is my January ingredient of the month, and I have been enjoying adding a spoonful to my toasts, waffles, oatmeal, and yes-smoothies.  You can even try adding it in a glass of warm milk as a tea or coffee substitute, or use as a marinade or in a salad dressing.  It has a strong and almost bitter flavor to it, so a lot goes a long way.  My favorite reason for adding it in to my recipes is for its high amount of iron.  In fact, just one tablespoon of blackstrap molasses provides over 19% of your daily recommended iron intake!  Read my post for more information on its nutritional properties, uses, and my favorite recipes.


Now the smoothie itself is good, but when you add the sauce to it – that’s when the real magic happens.  To make the chocolate sauce, I used maple syrup, black strap molasses, and raw cacao powder.  The maple syrup gives it just enough sweetness to balance out the blackstrap molasses.  I always prefer using maple syrup (or raw honey) to refined sugar.  Other favorite alternative sweeteners include dates, applesauce, brown rice syrup, and stevia, though 90% of the time I stick to maple syrup. Maple syrup has a lower glycemic index score to sugar, meaning less impact to blood sugar levels.  Unlike refined sugar, which is devoid of any nutrients, maple syrup contains antioxidants and the minerals zinc and manganese.  When a recipe calls for granulated sugar, you can substitute in 2/3 cup maple syrup to 1 cup sugar.


Mint chocolate chip smoothie with blackstrap molasses chocolate sauce


1 avocado

1 scoop collagen peptides (optional)*

3-4 fresh mint leaves

2 small handfuls of spinach (or baby kale)

1 banana (frozen or unfrozen)

1/2 cup milk of choice (I like almond)

Sauce ingredients:

1 tablespoon maple syrup

1 teaspoon black strap molasses

2 teaspoons raw cacao powder


Blend the smoothie ingredients on high for at least one minute, or until smooth and creamy.  Whisk together the sauce ingredients in a small bowl, then pour over the bowl and add toppings, such as cacao nibs, sliced almonds, coconut flakes, raw pumpkin seeds, and fresh mint.


*I use Further Food collagen peptides.  Use code MARYPARDOUX10 for 10% off your order.

Weekly Wellness No. 3

Weekly Wellness No. 3

A melange of wellness articles, people, events, food, and things that inspired me this week.

This week Greatist is covering sexual assault: find letters, resources, stories, support. #metoo

Chickpea Magazine is an ad-free magazine and site that supports a Whole Foods, plant-based DIY lifestyle.  They have pretty sweet seasonal food calendars for sale too, and a nice Instagram feed.

Registered dietitian and insta-friend Mallory adapted a breakfast cake from Bake Magazine that looks absolutely gorgeous.  (Recipe on her Instagram feed).

This Buzzfeed round-up of articles for people living with depression.

Have you heard about the process of manifestation? Check out Lacy Phillips, the queen of manifesting.  She offers both in-person and online courses aimed at unlocking the pathway to living your most intentional life.


Weekly Wellness No. 2

Weekly Wellness No. 2

A melange of wellness articles, people, events, food, and things that inspired me this week.

This year is the year I work on my finances (better add it to my 2018 intentions).  So when I heard of the KaKeibo book, I added it to my amazon wish list.  Set-up a bit like the envelope method, this Japanese financial journal seems simple yet effective.

I ordered the Practice You Journal as an early birthday present to myself.  After looking through the gorgeous artwork by author and artist Elena Brower, (the photo is one excerpt) I almost don’t want to write in it.  Almost.

Candice Kumai is a Japanese-American wellness writer, plant-based chef, and cookbook author.  I came across her profile on Instagram this week and fell in love with her style and health philosophy.  Here’s her recipe for a clean green smoothie!

When I lived in France I fell in love with not only the food but also the atmosphere surrounding it – the conversation, the fresh food, the company – they all make the meal and let me tell you, the meal can last a long time in France.  Read more about the importance of taking time to eat in the company of others and two other happiness-related cultural rituals.

A secret wish of mine-not that I currently have the time, but still-would be to host monthly dinner parties based upon fresh, local food and good company.  Sometimes I google my secret wishes, which is how I came across Secret Suppers, a collaboration of two female foodie entrepreneurs who are living a (now not-so-secret) dream of mine!


Challenging your limiting beliefs

Challenging your limiting beliefs

Today I want to talk about challenging your limited beliefs and affirmations.

What are limiting beliefs?

Limiting beliefs are things we hold to be true and which constrain us in some area of our life.  By believing them, we may be holding ourselves back in certain or all areas of our lives, be it social, professional, personal, etc.  These beliefs may be about ourselves, other people, and/or how we see the world.

They are usually stories we have been telling ourselves our whole life, and so we deem them to be true.  In fact, we may not even be aware that we have any limiting beliefs unless we choose to question our thoughts and belief systems, something which is not always easy to do.

Not all beliefs are bad; it is when they do not serve our best interests or they cause us unhappiness that they should be examined.  It is when we question these (negative) thoughts that we are able to break free from our own limitations and start to connect with our true self and discover what we really want.  An example of a limiting belief may be a person with low self-esteem who thinks People don’t like me.  Once questioned and worked on, this belief may become People love me for who I am.

So how can we discover what beliefs may be holding us back from moving on in an area of our life?

Start by looking at areas that cause you unhappiness, anxiety, stress, depression, anger, jealousy – any negative emotions you may be feeling.  What are you telling yourself that could be causing these feelings or situations?

An example could be: I sometimes get jealous when I see a successful person doing something that I would want to be doing.  The person doesn’t want to feel this way, but these feelings occasionally rise to the surface.

Now, these feelings are totally normal.  We all have felt jealous from time to time.  BUT if it’s something that is bringing you unhappiness, perhaps it’s worth questioning why you feel this way in order to get to the bottom of these reactions.

Another way to discover your limiting beliefs is to challenge your thoughts that start with a negative, such as I can’t, I shouldn’t, I don’t like, I’m not allowed.

After you identify a belief that is bringing you unhappiness, start questioning it.  I find that by asking myself question after question as to why I think the belief is true, it often points me in the direction to the right answer.

For example: I can’t (or don’t like to) meet people in a large group setting.  It’s stopping me from going out and meeting friends and has even begun to cause problems at work.

Ask yourself: Why don’t you want to?

Because I feel uncomfortable.

Why do you feel uncomfortable?

Because I don’t want people to see me.

Why don’t you want people to see you?

Because I don’t think they’ll like me.

Why wouldn’t they like you?


Of course there are many reasons why someone would not want to meet in a large group setting.  I am just using one reason for my example.  This example could then go on to examine the person’s history, such as maybe they were bullied and/or publicly embarrassed and they’re still worried it’ll happen again.  Maybe there was one or a slew of incidents that caused them to think that no one likes them, or even yet, that they don’t deserve to be liked/loved.  Perhaps their limiting belief would then be I am not worthy of love.

Once this limiting belief is discovered, it is now time to turn it into a positive statement.  I am not worthy of love now becomes I am worthy of love.  This new thought must be reinforced daily through writing it out or telling it to yourself.

You are now beginning to challenge your self-limiting thoughts and beliefs.

Whatever your limited belief(s) may be, you have been telling this fake story to yourself for years.  So do not be discouraged when it seems like it may be taking some time to change your thought patterns.  Keep at it!  Other things you can do to help are:

  • See a therapist.  There is no shame in seeing a therapist.  S/he can help you identify what is holding you back.
  • Write out your new belief daily, which can also be called an affirmation. The more often your write it and repeat it to yourself, the better.
  • Try to find a moment every day where you can sit down and be quiet and relax, checking in with how you’re feeling, taking deep breaths, and and listening to your body.
  • Read self-help or growth books.
  • Make sure you are surrounding yourself with people who are SUPPORTIVE of you, and especially supportive of the “new you” (who is ironically the real, original you.  They may just not have met this authentic side of you yet).


Recommended reading:

The Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron

You can heal your life by Louise Hay

DisclaiWhile I hope this article can be of help to you, please keep in mind that it is always best to seek help from a professional if you think it would be of benefit to you. I mention things that have helped me, but that does not mean that it my hold true or work for YOU.

Weekly wellness No. 1

Weekly wellness No. 1

A melange of wellness articles, people, events, food, and things that inspired me this week.

I don’t know much about the moon cycle.  But I’ve been a long-time follower of Mystic Mamma on Instagram and this calendar of hers caught my eye.

The Good Food Cooking Club just started this month: sign up to cook a winter brunch and share it with other partakes in a virtual brunch.

I love love love reading about other people’s routines and getting a glimpse into the life of strong women and entrepreneurs.  So thank you, Golubka Kitchen, for your self care interviews.  The latest is on Lauren Haynes, the founder of Wooden Spoon Herbs.

Hygge – is this concept still being instagrammed?  Either way, if you haven’t yet read up on the Danish concept of staying comfy during the cold winter months, Yoga Journal has your back with this article that they published last February.  I’m all for it!

Yogurt is one of my go-to snacks, but sometimes it can tend to get a bit, well, monotonous.  That is, if you don’t know what to pair it with.  Cue Bon Appetit’s Healthyish article about upgrading your plain ol’ bowl of yogurt.


Intentions for 2018

Intentions for 2018

I arrived a little late to the 2018 intentions party, though truth be told I’ve been thinking about my own for the past couple of weeks and have just made the time to now write them down.

Last year (like every year) I made a list of goals and resolutions.  But by the time February rolled around, I had forgotten about them already.  2017 was a time of transition for my family and I, what with moving to another country then another city in that new country, and I never really found a solid routine (that is except for my morning routine)

To combat putting my intentions and goals aside, this year I wrote them down on note cards and put them where they are easily accessible and I can glance at them whenever I need reminder or motivation.

When thinking about the new year, I asked myself a couple of questions:

It is the end of 2018. How have I grown?


It is the end of 2018.  What have I accomplished?

After answering these questions, I had a better idea of what I wanted to cultivate in my life.  I found myself drawn to the process of using words to represent what I want more of in my year.  Three words came to mind, and they are FAITH, LOVE, and PATIENCE.


Intention: Continue to strengthen my faith in God/the universe and myself.

How? Daily prayer, meditation, and affirmations.

I’ve realized the main thing that has been holding me back over the past year is fear.  Fear of success, fear of failing, fear or criticism, fear of death, fear of not being good enough, fear of being seen, even fear of not being seen.  When we harbor fear in our hearts it becomes much easier to start comparing ourselves to others, becoming jealous of others, and judging others.  In 2017 I vowed I would do all that I can to not live in this way.   Whenever I started feeling afraid, I turned to my faith in God, my faith in the universe, my faith in myself and others, and trusting that everything is being taken care of for me.  I stopped trying to control my own life and turned it over to God.  This was the biggest turning point in my journey to self-healing, and I want to continue to give it a large portion of my attention this year.


Intention: Love myself, love others.

How?  Demonstrate love for myself through affirmations, positive self talk, and self care practices.  For myself and others through acts of love – not just saying but doing.

When we love ourselves things just work.” -Louise Hay

Amen to that.


Intention: Practice patientience with myself and with others.  Do not jump to conclusions, and be more considerate and understanding.

How? Practice breathwork-Taking deep breaths when I notice myself becoming impatient or agitated.  Remembering that I am not always in the right and showing

Besides my three intentions, I also have some physical/material goals:

Read three books a month.  One self-growth, one nutrition, one fiction/non-fiction.

Dedicate enough time for my holistic nutrition studies.

Keep my home organized and clean (a self-love practice)

Join a women’s sports team (there’s a netball team in Hamburg!)

Practice piano 2-3x/month (through a piano room rental)

Drink 2-3 liters of water per day (another self love + care practice)

Continue my BBG workouts 3x/week

Offer a nutrition + cooking class

Attend at least 3 concerts or operas

Get dressed/take care of my appearance – even if I am staying inside almost the whole day.