Fitness Group Seed Muffins

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Oct 312016
Photo of seedy muffins

These muffins were such a favourite at The Fitness Group.  I was recently asked for the recipe and thank goodness, somone still had it!

  • 3 cups whole grains-wheat, triticale,oatmeal,7 grain cereal, cracked wheat (I used Bob’s Red Mill 10 Grain Cereal – pictured)
  • 2 1/2 cups buttermilk
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 tbsp vanilla
  • 1 C. raw sugar
  • 1 C. sunflower oil
  • 1 C. dried cranberries (could also use currants, raisins, or chopped prunes)
  • 1/2 C. each of poppy, sunflower, sesame seeds and/or millet
  • 1 1/2 to 2 C. unbleached flour sifted with 2 tsp baking powder and 1 tsp. baking soda

Roast sunflower and sesame seeds at 300 for 10 minutes. cool.

Combine whole grains and buttermilk and let sit 10 minutes.

Beat eggs.

Add eggs to buttermilk with vanilla, oil and sugar.

Add currants, the rest of the seeds and stir til combined. Add flour mixture and stir until just barely combined.

Bake at 375 for 20 minutes.

Contemplation – The Pause with Barbara Crompton

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Jun 212015

Pause, breathe, push yourself away from responsibility for 5 minutes…….

“I am enough just  the way I am today”

Have you ever felt…”I am not enough”….. society has said it, my Mom and Dad have said it, my children or friends  have blasted it into my brain that I needed to be more.  Take a break and absorb this poem by Danna Faulds

It is enough to offer love,
No matter how imperfectly received or given.
It’s enough to try and fail at a difficult task; enough
To fall and rise and stumble, sigh and start to walk however slowly, in the direction the soul (not the mind) points.
It’s enough to seek peace and find pain, to gain nothing but the vision of the truth , and take the long way home.
It’s enough to hear the voice of fear and hide…or seek it out and face the shame or shadows.
It’s enough to set out to tame demons and watch them multiple instead.
It’s enough to be buffeted by the winds of change and not be blown over.
I and you and all of us are more than enough .

Go forth, be enough, and perhaps  grow in your light and open yourself to light and love.

In full gratitude of the journey of life.


The Blue Zones | 9 Power Influencers of Longevity

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Jan 262015
Do you want to live to be over 100 with good health and a positive attitude towards life ?
In the book “The Blue Zones”  the author Dan Buettner identifies the places in the world where the most centurions exist. Think Sardenia, Italy, Loma Linda, California, Nosura Peninsula in Costa Rico, Okinawa Japan, a small island in Greece for living a long life.  In each of these destinations there were commonalities of behaviours, lifestyles and attitudes.  These are called “the nine power influencers of longevity. “
Let me share them with you….
  1. Move naturally and often!  Get up and garden, walk briskly, hike a mountain, bend and stretch in yoga.
  2. Have purpose!  In yoga the 7th chakra is our energy center of purpose, the center where we ask ourselves “why am I on this earth, what legacy would I like to leave the world.” Victor Frankl, Holocaust survivor, and author of “Man,s search of meaning” identifies common characteristic of the survivors. He found people with a purpose,no matter what it was,survived the longest.
  3. Down shift, manage your stress, meditate, and find your quiet moments to connect with nature and yourself.  
  4. Adhere to the 80% rule!  Eat 80% of the time healthfully. Don,t beat yourself up for 20% of the time “jumping off the wagon.”
  5. Eat a Plant slant diet!  Fill your fridge with red peppers, dark leafy vegetables, root vegetables, berries. Fill your dinner plate with 80% vegetables and fruit.
  6. Moderate Wine with friends!  Everything in moderation!
  7. Know you belong!   Maslow’s Hierarchy of Human Needs identifies the base of his pyramid to self actualization is water, food, shelter. The next rung of the pyramid in reaching ” the great self” is feeling an integral part of something bigger than yourself.
  8. Engage often with loved ones!  Compassion, gratitude and total appreciation for family and friends brings richness to our lives.
  9. Find your positive cheerful tribe!  Living with negative, unhappy, disgruntled people eats at your core fiber of goodness and joy.  Walk away from these humans and find a new tribe.
So how did you do?
I think I will be around for the 100th celebration. Come and practice yoga with me on that day!

Sciatic Pain Releif – a four part video series

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Nov 112014

A common ailment for many people is sciatica – a consistent pain in the lower back and buttocks that may potentially extend down the leg to the foot.  If you experience lower back pain, join Barbara Crompton from Puerto Vallarta, Mexico in this four-part series of gentle stretching poses designed to increase your range of motion and provide sciatic nerve pain relief. Barb is joined by students in a restorative yoga class and together they will help you to release tightness and relieve compression of the sciatic nerve, the longest nerve in the body.

Constance’s Carrot Cake

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Aug 172014

photo (16)2 c. whole wheat flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp all spice

1/2 c olive oil
1 c brown sugar
4 eggs
2 tsp vanilla
6 c grated carrots

grate all your carrots first and set aside

combine oil, sugar in mixer.  beat eggs in one at a time.  add vanilla

 then add baking powder,baking soda, salt, cinnamon, allspice

in a plastic bag put in your 2c.whole wheat flour and add all your
grated carrots. and shake it all up.

(this method keeps the carrots from sinking to the bottom of your cake)

add the carrots and flour  to the rest of the batter, fold together.

Use an extra long loaf pan, a 9 x 13 pan or 2 x small regular loaf pans, or any pan you like.

bake at 350   approx. 45min.

cream cheese icing

4 oz. cream cheese
1/4 c  butter
1 c icing sugar
2 tsp vanilla extract

beat cream cheese, butter, add sugar, add vanilla.

Have fun making this yummy cake!

Constance Wong, Yoga Enthusiast

Gambier Cookies

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Jul 262014

Gambier Island is one of my favourite places in the world – I grew up swimming in the ocean and running through the trails behind our cottage.  Now, I enjoy weekends here with friends and family.  One of my dear friends, Barb Cornish, passed along this recipe to me.  I hope you love these cookies as much as I do.


  • 2/3 cup unsalted butter
  • 2/3 cup brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 1/2 cups granola or oats (not instant oats)
  • 1 1/2 cups flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup any type of nuts (we used walnuts and pecans)
  • 2/3 cup cranberries
  • 2/3 cup chocolate chips


  1. Preheat oven to 375.
  2. Beat together butter and sugar until fluffy; add eggs and mix well.
  3. Mix together granola, flour, baking soda and salt and mix well into butter/sugar/egg mixture.
  4. Add nuts, cranberries and chocolate chips and mix well.
  5. Roll into 1 1/2 inch balls, place on an ungreased cookie sheet and flatten to your own preference for thickness/size.
  6. Cook 10 to 12 minutes, until golden brown on the bottom.



Brain Power at 101

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May 162014

I want to be engaged, alive, excited about keeping memories, experience each moment with clarity and passion for a lucid, active long life.  Here are some tips to potentially keep your brain in working order.  These highlights are from the February 2014 Nutrition Action Healthletter, an excellent source of healthy lifestyle information.

  1. WATCH YOUR BLOOD PRESSURE and BLOOD sugar  – high blood pressure and type 2 diabetes takes a toll on the brain and is a risk factor for latter life cognitive impairment.
  2. LOSE WEIGHT –  a western diet of overeating and gaining excess pounds may cause high blood insulin  which research is leaning towards the possible decrease in cognitive abilities  as one ages.  Try the intermittent diet. Two days a week (ie. Tuesday and Wednesday) eat 250 grams of lean protein ( beans, chick peas, skinless chicken), 3 servings of low fat dairy (yogurt, milk)  4 servings of low carb vegetables (ie brocolli , kale, spinach, peppers, tomatoes).  Intermittent fasting not only increases brain levels of protein that stimulate the growth of new brain cells and connection between them it also causes weight lose. The other five days cut out one habit ie.  cut out a dessert, an alcoholic beverage, cream sauce or white pasta or bread.
  3. GET MOVING – walk briskly, go to Zumba or aerobic classes, elevate your pulse so you are huffing and puffing when you are moving.  Try to create space on your calender for 4 times a week for a minimum of 30 to 60 minutes a day.  Exercise may expand brain volume and protect the cells that line blood vessels.
  4. USE YOUR NOGGIN – play suduco, bridge, read books that introduce new concepts of life, engage in social activities, develop your intellectual powers, care and connect. By doing this you are developing cognitive reserve for latter life.
  5. SLEEP – A study in mice show mice who sleep continuously  found that the brain cells expanded from 14 % to 23% , which may make it easier for toxic waste products to be flushed out of the brain. The transference to human has not been proven.  Try to have 6-8 hours a night.  It may produce positive effects for your brain a hormone called leptin is produced which helps in weight control.  Too early in the research to be conclusive.
  6. CAFFEINE – Caffiene may protect your brain against cognitive decline. A study showed drinking 4 to 5 cups of coffee like Maxwell House (500 milligrams a day) or two tall specialty house coffees ( ie Starbucks 520 milligrams) may be associated with memory preservation.  Too early in the research to be conclusive.
  7. VITAMIN  D – studies have shown that people with low blood levels of vitamin D have a greater risk of dementia.  Still in the evaluating stage.
  8. YOU ARE WHAT YOU EAT – keeping a lid on your blood sugar and blood pressure. Eat a diet based on OmniHeart and Dash studies. It is rich in vegetables, fruits and fiber. Low in sugar carbs and saturated fats . . . . based on 2100 calories a day:
  • Veggies and fruit –  11 servings (ie. half cup blueberries, brocolli, kale, greens, carrots, beets, melons, or 1 fruits, (ie Granny Smith apples, banana)
  • grains  – 4 servings (ie.half cup brown pasta or high fiber cereal, 1 slice multigrain bread
  • Low fat dairy – 2 servings(ie.1 cup low fat milk or yogurt, 40g low fat cheese- feta, ricotta
  • Legumes and nuts- 2 servings (ie. half cup black beans or garbanzo,quarter  cup almonds, sunflower, pumpkin seeds, 120g tofu)
  • Poultry and fish- 120g (ie. salmon max 2 times a week, trout,mackerel ,baked chicken with no skin, shrimp max 1 time a week)
  • Oils and fats – 2 tbs (olive oil)
  • Desserts and sweets – 2 (small oatmeal cookie, high fiber granola bar- note: this would use up 1 serving of oil)
  • Wild card – 1 (one more of above )
Pick one or two behaviors from the list above and concentrate on modifying these behaviors over a 90 day period.  If you fall off the wagon, climb back on. Don’t waste energy or brain power in beating yourself up.
Three cheers for you and all you do to improve your smarts.  I wish you a Long and healthy life filled with happy memories and moment to moment sharpness.
Namaste (may the love and light in me salute the love and light in you).

Loka Samasta Sukino Bhavantu

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Jul 252013
Come and join me In celebration of our universe and all living beings in it’s heart.
Will Blunderfield sings this thought in his song  “Loka Samasta sukino bhavantu “.  This means……
May the entire universe be filled with peace, joy, love and light.  May all human beings be free and happy.   May the thoughts, words and actions of my own contribute to the freedom and happiness of all. 
Crank on the inspiration and bask yourself in experiencing heaven on earth with Will.



Jul 022013

A question for you!

quote-barbaracromptonIf you had a pie shape and you were to divide the pie into percentages……what percentage of your life do you live in the past,what percentage of your life do you live in the future and what percentage of your life do you live in the present.

If you live mostly in the past you may experience shame and guilt of what you didn’t or should have done (a useless self destructive emotions) or you may experience envy of your past youth or your fleeting fame of your heyday (a self defeating emotion).

If you live mostly in the future you may experience intense, maybe irrational fear of what will be..getting sick, losing your youth,not having enough money to live.

Yes, the past is grand…..those cherishable memories of family, friends and events. Yes, the future is grand ….the planning of trips and exciting adventures. Continue reading »


 Yoga Poems and Readings  Comments Off on Vulnerability
Jun 142013

On Wednesday, I did a keynote presentation for an AGM at a corporate site. It was the first time doing this where I shared my personal story.

The motivator behind my decision to deliver this topic was a TedX video with researcher Brene Brown, a Doctor who researches vulnerability and shame. But more importantly than her title, she is an honest, real and dynamic human with wise words to ponder!


With deep appreciation for our connection,