It is such a pleasure to introduce you to this month's radiant & inspiring woman, Kristen Graham, the founder and creator of Wild Spirit Feather.
Kristen and I met through Bright-Eyed & Blog-Hearted and I have been following her blog for a while now. She is a blogger, vlogger and meditation teacher based on the sunny Gold Coast.
Kristen oozes calm, peace and tranquility. Watching her video blogs just puts you at so much ease and you are surrounded by her words of wisdom. She truly is a beautiful soul.
So without further ado, please enjoy getting to know Kristen...
+ Why do you do what you do? What motivated or inspired you?
I fell like there are so many layers to what lead me here, a constant stream and series of moments. Here it is in a nutshell.
When I was twenty I relapsed from an autoimmune disease I had as a child. I quit my job as a hairdresser, drove myself to a Yoga studio and overhauled my diet and lifestyle and found a holistic way of living. I feel a strong calling to inspire people to live a healthy wholesome lifestyle, to create peace, calm and presence in their daily lives and ultimately to follow their hearts.
+ What quote do you live by at the moment?
I more so have some questions guiding my life right now.
How can I leave this world a better place? How do I want to make people feel?
I’m also using this affirmation during my morning ritual and morning meditation at the moment.
"I allow my day to unfold and flow as I carry peace and gratitude in my heart."
+ If you could share one piece of advice for a newbie to the wellness world, what would you tell them?
The difference between lasting change and a crash or fad diet is education and knowing what works for your body. Allow yourself to change one habit at a time and understand why you are making the change.
Try removing gluten/dairy/sugar form your diet for at least 21 days then re introduce it and see how your body responds. This is the only way you will know whether your body is thriving on these foods or if they are hindering you. If you understand that gluten makes you bloated, leaves you with cramps and leads to skin inflammation then your much more likely to say no to that piece of white fluffy bread without feeling like your missing out. Understanding how your body works is key and then you can say a polite but confident “no” when someone passes you that piece of chocolate mud cake. Allow yourself the joy of experimenting.
+ What would you tell your 14 year old self?
I often think about this and I truly believe if I went back in time and changed even the smallest thing that it may have changed the course of my life and I believe I needed to go through every heart break, every unspoken word, every bad mood, every illness. So I like to think of what I would tell my fourteen year old daughter, and it would be this.
Express your feelings. Do not be afraid to express your love. Keep your heart open, when you feel heart brake, know that this is a beautiful thing because it means you have experienced a great love.
+ What is your favourite meal to cook? Can you share the recipe with us?
I'm a lover of Mexican flavours and I’m not too good at a following a recipe. I’m a use what you've got in the fridge and throw it in a bowel kinda girl. Here’s my Vegan Sweet Potato Mexi recipe. Use your intuition, add flavours you enjoy and use what you have in the fridge.
This recipe is Vegan, Sugar free, Gluten Free, nutritious and Delicious and despite the look of the lengthy recipe, it really is simple and a dish that will leave you with leftovers for lunch and dinner the next day.
Vegan Sweet Potato Mexi
1 whole sweet potato
1-2 diced white potatoes
1 brown or purple onion
1 can Refried black beans
1 cup of cooked Brown Rice
1-2 cloves of garlic finely chopped
1 chilli, finely chopped
Handful Lettuce mix
1 Purple Salad onion
Organic (sugar free) Mexican Salsa (find a good quality salsa from the health food store).
1 can of organic diced tomatoes.
Coat your whole sweet potato (leave the skin on) in coconut oil and place it into the oven to bake while you continue making the rest of the dish.
Start cooking your rice in a rice cooker and move onto the rest of the recipe.
Sexy Mexi Filling
Heat some coconut oil in a pan and add the garlic, chilli and one onion.
Add your diced white potatoes and allow to cook for a few minutes then add your can diced tomatoes, some Mexican salsa (as much as your desire) and your can of refried black beans.
Once the brown rice has cooked, add this to the pan, now you have your Sexy Mexi filling, keep warm on the stove while your sweet potato is baking in the oven and move onto making your simple sale mix.
Simple Salad Mix
Chop up your fresh tomatoes and purple salad onion add it to your lettuce mix and set it to the side. This is your salad mix
Easy “no fuss” Guacamole
Mash your 2 avocados and a squeeze of lime and add some purple salad onion and tomatoes to the mix.
Once your sweet potato has cut it in half, now build your burrito. Add the filling to the sweet potato, as well as the salad mix. Add some Mexican salsa and your Guacamole on top. Now you have a nutritious and filling meal and you’ll have leftovers for lunch. I suggest getting some gluten free wraps and having a wrap for lunch the next day.
I believe healthy indulgence is important in a wholesome diet, when i meet people they often think I’m missing out on amazing dessert and good food, I smile and think to myself, no, your missing out.
Since indigence is an important ritual in my life here's my hot peppermint cacao recipe. A lovely late night Winter warmer.
Hot Peppermint Cacao
My favourite winter Warmer.
Coco Quench (coconut mylk) You can find this at the health food tore and most Coles and Woolworths. I love cocoquench because it is naturally sweet.
Cinnamon Powder or a Cinnamon Stick
doTERRA Peppermint oil.
Making the potion
Heat desired amount of coconut milk on the stove top.
Add as much cacao as you like. If this is your first time making hot cacao then start with two teaspoons, you can always add more.
A pinch of Cinnamon powder or you could pop a cinnamon stick into the mix while brewing.
Wisk to remove any Cacao lumps. Bring to the boil and pour into your favourite mug. Now add 1 drop of doTERRA peppermint oil. Only add the doTERRA peppermint oil once your liquid had been poured into your mug, we don’t want the peppermint oil to be boiling on the stove top because the high heat will destroy the precious properties that peppermint oil has to offer.
This recipe is so flexible. Use what you have. I have made this using only Coco Quench and Cacao. You can leave out the Cinnamon if you wish. You could also add a vanilla pod for added sweetness. Have fun and create an indulgent drink that you'll love.
+ It can be tough starting up a business/blog, what has been your biggest lesson learnt so far on this journey?
I've got three tips for you.
1. My best piece of advice would be to allow yourself to experiment. Share what you feel inspired to share. Show up as yourself, with your own opinions, your own passions, your own poetry. You attract the right people when you show up as yourself. Then be patient with your journey, every overnight success has spent months, years working to get where they are today.
2. You do not need to invest in a web designer right away. Allow yourself time to explore your own style of blogging which will continue to evolve. You can create a beautiful simplistic website using themes that won’t cost the Earth. Use some nice clear images of yourself to display on your blog, we want to know who’s running the show and I feel this creates connection.
3. In the early days of blogging life, we consume so much content written by other bloggers, while this is wonderful, this can influence our style of blogging and we can start to take on the voice and style of our favourite bloggers. Be sure to spend time in meditation each day, to be alone with your own thoughts and feelings so that you don’t get lost in a sea of other peoples voices.
+ What is your favourite way to move your body?
Ive tried many styles of movement and what I’ve found is that my body favours long walks along the coastline and Yoga sessions. I am very gentle with myself. I love activating the core in the mornings to get my creativity flowing along with with a few downward dogs to stretch out my hamstrings and flip my world upside down. I love a good giggle and a light hearted, joyful approach to movement.
+ How would you like to be remembered?
As compassionate, gentle, kind, warm and joyful.
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