Making divine connections locally! ….and nationally!

Making divine connections locally! ….and nationally!

Love Shelby Connelly and Five Elements Living


Five Elements Living TV post:

Five Elements Living TV Ep 1


Feathered Pipe Foundation, Montana


Type in Potsdam, NY in the search box &  find me and my conscious living and healing work!

Blessing of health & healing to all!

Merry Christmas with Love

Yes, I am a 'lil late... got caught up in the flurry of Holiday activities! Hope it was HAPPY!


Merry Christmas to all.  

You are the gift.  Give this gift freely and make the world a better place to be.

You ARE the Gift

As we pull ourselves together for Holiday celebrating 2013, remember that you ARE the gift.

We so often get caught up in the corporate world's version and vision of what a holiday should look like:

1. Credit cards bending to the $$ weight of gift purchases, because, well, that is what we are supposed to do, right?

2. Over stuffed gift giving all to the benefit of the corporate world's bottom line.

3.  Over stuffed eating and merry making leaving us feeling washed out after the celebrations are over.

Giving You As The Gift

Take time to do things for others that count; make someone else's life easier, happier, and healthier by giving You as the gift.  It is a gift of LOVE.

Happy Holidays

and may your 2014 be Happy, Healthy, and Whole 

in Mind, Body & Soul.


Eggnog Latte*


1 cup of milk

1 egg

1/2 tsp. vanilla

1 tsp. dark maple syrup

1-2 tsp. decaffeinated instant coffee (Or use the caffeine and enjoy!)

pinch or two of nutmeg

pinch or two of cinnamon

optional: whipped cream

Place all ingredients, except whipped cream, in a blender and gently blend together.

Pour into a pan and heat slowly and gently. I heat on low for 2 minutes and test the temperature.  If not warmed enough, I keep heating and check every 1 minute.  Yes, I set the timer.  Over heated eggnog gets clumpy!

Pour into your favorite mug, add whipped cream (or not), enjoy!

eggnog latte

*I opt for all organic, naturally-raised ingredients to better nourish me, to nourish those I am making my "eggnog love", and to inadvertently nourish the earth through better food and farming choices.

Mount Hagen Organic Instant Coffee available through special order at  Nature's Storehouse, Canton, NY.

Why I Love Yoga and Other Thoughts on Whole Food, Whole Health Healing

frost 3
Frost, my Siamese Mutt Cat, doing her version of Downward Facing Cat Pose. She IS a natural at Yoga!

I wrote this article for the Potsdam Food Coop's Fall newsletter.  I decided to re-post it here as many people commented on the words being meaningful to them.  Thanks for the kind words Potsdam Coop friends!

Frost doing the "downward facing cat"!

Why I Love Yoga…and other thoughts on local, whole foods!

And you are now thinking, what does yoga have to do with the food?  My answer is quite simple. When we create mindfulness through a regular yoga practice (or any other form of body awareness exercises: Tai Chi, Qi Gong, Tae Kwon Do), we consciously make healthier choices in all areas of our lives.  This means healthier food choices. 

Back to yoga.  Why I love yoga… because it works!  It works on many levels, see my above comment around food choices.  The word yoga comes from the Sanskrit word yuj and means to yoke or bind. Yoga is often interpreted as a method of discipline that brings union (yoking or binding) to body, mind, and spirit. Yoga is the study of the Self.  Yoga gives us tools to improve our lives by stripping away the illusions that block us from connecting with our true self, with others, and with life itself.

Yoga is a whole food that nourishes body, mind, and soul.  Food is sacred to the body; it nourishes and sustains us.  Love is sacred to the mind and heart; nourishing the very part of us, our spirits, that gives to others and back to ourselves.  Yoga is the breath of the soul; keeping our life force strong and our 3 parts (body, mind, soul) in harmony and union.

Getting down to the brass tack: I am an exercise enthusiast.  Those who know me, know this well.  As long as I am not sitting still, I am happy.  The list of activities I have engaged in goes on and on and blurs together over the years and decades of my life. I love and have loved them all.

For many years I was into serious weight training and I felt that I was very strong.  When I started to do yoga, I was humbled.  I could not push up into a back bend.  My arms would just not do it.  After a few weeks I had the back bend thing down.  Years later, I now do reverse push ups.  Push ups from the back bend pose!  The strength I have gained is through my whole body (mind and soul!).

Over the years I realized my yoga strength ran deeper than that.  My choices around food and other lifestyle habits became more conscious in a health promoting way.  I paid attention to eating with awareness, chewing food well, eating only what I needed, and stopping before I was stuffed.  These habits around food and food choices slipped in the back door; all part of the study of self (ha ha, yoga!).  All those years of doing yoga transformed the way I interacted with myself and the world around me and I did not even perceive it happening.

Positive things I noticed around food: not needing to fill my plate to the brim or returning to the potluck table for another round of food, being satisfied with enough, passing on the desserts as sweet foods no longer dominated my taste buds, feeling abundance and satisfaction with light meals, and reveling in the flavors / colors / textures / and gift that each meal brings.

When we stop the constant chatter inside our heads and still our minds through mindfulness activities (yoga and other body awareness exercises), we tend to make choices that are in alignment with what is best for our health without feeling deprived.  This is because we have learned to live in the present moment and are aligned in body, mind, and spirit.  That is the awareness that Yoga brings to our being.

A cluttered "chattery" mind and a body that is not aligned in mind, body, and spirit tends to make decisions based upon impulse and cravings without regard to what is best for long term health.

When we quiet our minds, we use our emotions to our advantage.  When our minds are busy, our emotions use us.

Change is defined as the process of becoming different, substituting one thing for another, biological metamorphosis, personal development especially if seen as personally "life-changing". Consciousness is awareness of one's own existence and behaviors, inwardly attentive and mindful.  Conscious change involves will and deliberateness, altering self in an intentionally conceived manner.

When we discover that something we are doing in our lives no longer serves our higher purpose as a human, conscious change is how we evolve.  When we discover that the lifestyle and food choices we have made, consciously or not, are not reflections of our higher selves, we move to make change.  We realize our bodies are not vibrating at our highest level of health and we seek out ways to change this:  to heal current symptoms and weight issues and prevent lifelong degenerative diseases from interfering with our vibrant quality of life.

Remember that life is always for us!  Life force energy is always moving towards the positive, health and healing.  It is humans who tend to go against the grain of nature and turn this flow of energy against ourselves.  If you allow yourself to be in this flow, positive things will just happen.

Yoga, or any body awareness type exercise, aligns our bodies, our minds and our spirits so we make life giving choices.  Yoga helps us to become normalized in our eating, to reach a pattern of habits that are normal and healthy for us.  Yoga (or any body awareness exercise) help us to walk into the Potsdam Food Coop, Nature's Storehouse, our local farm stands or supermarkets, and we can make choices that feed and nourish every cell of our being.  We walk out with life giving, whole foods to nourish ourselves and our families.

Simply put into words by Donna Farhi, world renowned Yoga Teacher: (image compliments of Trillium Center for Yoga & Health, Potsdam, NY)

A book to inspire you to create conscious living in your life.

This means you no longer make choices based upon emotional triggers. You instead make choices based upon inner wisdom and peacefulness.





Update 7/31/2019 I created and teach my Sacred Circle Yoga Mentorship because I see what a daily Yoga practice does for one’s health.

Update 4/23/2018  Happy Earth Day!  This post has been used and published in several newsletters and journals in the 5 years since I wrote it. My wish is that the gift of Yoga, mindfulness, reaches out to help many heal emotional issues around food, food choices, and eating habits.  I have since created The School of Self Healing home study courses on weight loss, sugar addiction, and whole food eating that embody the mindful / yoga habits to support your feeling whole and happy in the healing choices you make. Much Love to All.

More Why I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE Yoga Blog Posts, Yup, click on the "blue" back there. Enjoy reading as much as I enjoy sharing my Love of Yoga.

Update on 4/29/16 Great quotes from the book "The Little Red Book Of YOGA WISDOM" Thank you Shelby of Five Elements Living Retreat Center for always keeping my heart and soul open to inspiration.

  • Yoga is the martial art of the soul and the opponent is the strongest you have ever faced: Your Ego. - Unknown

  • Spiritual practices help us move from identifying with the ego to identifying with the soul. -Ram Dass

  • Yoga exists in the world because everything is linked (connected). -Desikashar


Diet "Dr. Doom"

   Diet Dr. Doom
diet dr. Doom
Photo courtesy of Eli Schechter

True life is lived when tiny changes occur.

                             -Leo Tolstoy

People see me coming and they say, "Oh no, it is her, the one who wants to take away all of our goodies!" 

I am here to tell you, deprivation is not my focus.  I am all about helping you see what you are inviting into your life: (And I would be happy to teach you how to make whole food treats; cakes, pies, cookies, donuts...I will say that they are a treat, not an everyday food, but make them well and enjoy your indulgence, once in a while!  Whole Food Treat cooking class is coming up November 14th with the Local Living Venture, see link below.)

1.  Yummy, whole foods... real nutrition that feeds the body cells right down to your tippy toes!

2.  Movement that makes your body sing,

3.  Outdoor activity for fresh air, sunshine, and promoting good sleep,

4.  Awesome, vibrant health to a ripe, old age!

Focus on the positive: what you are going to create and the good things you are inviting into your lifestyle!

Want to learn more?

Call me, we can chat & set you on your healing path.

Come to one of my workshops:

Nature's Storehouse, Canton.  November 6th in the evening, 6 PM
Attend a cooking class I teach for the Local Living Venture:
So, I meant to send this on October 30th... a 'lil Halloween BOO to you.  
However, life was busy, I forgot, so it goes!  
Hope your Halloween was spooky and full of whole foods (not sugar)!

Protein Powder I Use

Protein Powder I Use...

Wait...What?  Protein, Paula... have I stumbled upon the wrong Paula's blog post?

I get questions from clients, quite frequently, on what I think is the best protein powder to use.

Stepping back a few years... protein powders come in and out of fashion like clothing styles. I know this cyclic pattern, I have plaid shirts purchased when I was 20 years old and 28 years later (yes, I still have those plaid shirts), I am right back in the swing of fashion!

Enter protein powders from the late 70's and 80's.  With a processing makeover (claiming to preserve the vital nutrients of raw milk and colostrum... maybe, but I have a hard time believing that you can remove the liquid whey from the whole milk and then process it into powdered form and still retain all the vital nutrients...really?)  and a new label, perhaps some updated, high tech marketing hype and voila... a new fad ready to sell to the newest generation.

My favorite protein powder is this: zero, zip, nada, zilch, none of them!  In my eyes, they are very processed, refined, manufactured products... not food.  When food is in its whole state, it is a nourishing, cell building gift to your body.  Processed products by any name: rice protein powder, soy protein powder, whey protein powder, hemp protein powder (get the idea here?), well... not so nourishing.

My thoughts, and I know I go against the grain, take it for what it is worth.

Now if you are making your own cheese and keeping the whey liquid to use, great.  Much different than the powdered whey stuff sold as health food.  Again, this is my healing thoughts.

If you think you need more protein, for whatever your reason, use real foods - whole foods. Are you using protein powders in a smoothie to up your daily protein?  Add a raw egg or two from healthy chickens, raised by farmers you know, and living on farms that are clean and natural.  I would never use a commercially raised egg in raw form, organic or not.  Add raw nuts and seeds, they are loaded with protein and healthy fat to boot. Tolerate dairy?  Use real milk from real cows / goats / sheep / yaks, raised eating their natural diets and keep the milk raw and unprocessed. (I am not a big fan of the packaged milk replacements: rice, soy, almond milk, etc.  Again, it is processed, made in a factory. Make your almond milk at home, it is easy and you control the ingredients and process.  Email me for a recipe.) Add 1/4 to 1/3 cup of beans to the smoothie, if you tolerate them.  I recommend light tasting and lighter colored beans for this purpose.

All of these recommendations, for smoothies, are foods that can be eaten just as food.  I am not a big fan of tossing a bunch of yummy foods in a blender and pureeing into a liquid meal.  I like to chew food in a real meal form.  So, with that said, eat any of the above foods to increase your protein intake.  Take soft boiled eggs (from healthy, local chickens), 3 minutes, for on the go meals.  Cheese and yogurt from well raised animals.  Eat lentils and split peas in all sorts of yummy dishes:  soups, stews, Indian dahl... the sky is the limit.

My point is that there are many plant and animal whole foods that can be added to your diet without resorting to powdered protein products.  Nature did not make them, a factory did.

My focal point for making healthy food choices: did nature make it or was it concocted in a factory?

I will confess, I have had running dialogues with various naturopathic healers who recommend protein powders.  One healer, in particular, I have their whole food protocol for healing disease that clearly states to eat natural foods, avoid packaged foods.  Then the protocol recommends a protein powder and protein snack bar made by a specific company.  What?! Really?!  When I read this my first thought was: "How can this "healer" recommend a 100% whole food diet that eliminates packaged foods, and then turn around and recommend a factory made protein product or two, all in the same health education document? How is this not sending a very confusing message to those seeking healing?"

As I always say, take the information in and create your own healing truths.
Stay tuned for fat... Mmmm, Mmmm Fat, coming soon in a newsletter blog post near you!

Local Workshops in November

Local Workshops in November:

Whole Foods for Your

Whole Health & Healing

  Yummy, warming, fall & winter veggies!

Travel through the world of whole foods.  Learn what they are and how they affect your health.  Learn how to feed your body cells to create vibrant health, prevent & heal disease, slow your aging, balance your body weight, and just feel plain and simply good all the time!

Learn why eating in balance with the seasons and feeding your body with foods grown locally enhances your health.

Nature's Storehouse:  Wednesday, November 6th at 6 PM

Call to register 386-3740

Potsdam Public Library:  Saturday, November 16th at 10 AM

Call to register: 265-7230

Book signing, with books available for purchase, after both workshops. 

Looking for a health and healing workshop for your work site, church group, family & friend group, weight loss group, sports team, parenting group, retreat weekend group; any group interested in improving their health, wellness, and longevity?

Here is a sampling list of workshops I have presented:  (and I am open and ready to create a unique workshop to meet your group's needs!)

Whole Foods for Health & Healing : what is whole food, why eat it, how to make changes in your life including the why's of eating seasonally and locally.  This can include recipe makeovers, conversion to whole foods, etc.

Natural Foods Know How:  How to navigate the world of food marketing to bring home the best choices for you and your family.

Healthy Menu Prep:  Making the seasonal kitchen meals fun and simple to nourish your body all year long.

Detox Diets:  What they are, why they work, how to implement simple detoxes and more involved detoxes.

Healing with Herbs:  Common herbs for simple healing at home, antimicrobial use.

Gut Health:  What creates and destroys healthy gut micro-organisms, how to fortify your gut for whole body health.

Divine Diet, Crowding Out Mindless Eating: Learn to nourish body, mind, and soul for whole body health and weight balancing for life!

Fall in love with movement:    The benefits of movement, exercise.  Why we need to move and how to get more movement into your daily life.

Proteins, Carbohydrate, & Fats:  What they all are, why we need them, and what foods provide them (healthiest food choices for each energy source).

Posture Perfect:  Why is posture important to whole body health and how to create it through movement and while sitting, standing, or lying down.

Sugar Blues:  Why is sugar so addicting and how to get the sweet stuff out of your life.