I have never considered myself a poet. Like, ever. But I was sitting in the cafe in Irby, and felt struck with the need to be one in that moment. It kind of led me to a momentary identity crisis, and then I decided to lead with my creativity rather than my fear. Love was the outcome.

No.1

english gentlemen. Englishmen.
go ahead.
call me your darling.
call me your love.
give me your silent winks.
subtley sexy, yet intensely intimate.
just for a moment, grace me with all of your focus.
it’s lovely.

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Little English cafes teach us something…

There’s always time for a cup of tea and a chat.

That’s just the English way. We slow down enough to ask the question, to listen to the story, to pay close attention. We just pop over for a cuppa. But what a treat to stop by the cafe, the daytime hub of the village, to have a chat. (Note : At nighttime that would be the pub.) 😉

Cafes (or coffee shops to my American tribe) have expanded their original function. It’s a beautiful thing. Now, rather than simply connect with local lovelies, we have the opportunity to reach a global audience and receive a global perspective. What a gift! Maybe you’re reading this from a cafe far away? In this expansion, though, we can’t forget how they served us originally : a meeting space to listen and be heard, to find connection and love.

So millenials, I ask you this. Every once in a while head to your local spot without a computer, without a phone, and *gulp* without even a friend. Enjoy your warm mug and see what kind of adventure awaits. Perhaps not on your first outing like this, but soon enough you’ll meet a kindred spirit. Maybe you’ll connect after your moment over tea, and maybe you won’t. But this isn’t about THAT, what you get or where it’s going, is simply about being, giving your questions, your stories, your attention. Find a cafe that makes you feel like you, and go for it darling!

|| merseyside ||

In the UK each cafe has their own little personalities. Especially in the smaller villages where Starbucks and the like don’t reign supreme. Here were a few that my adventure boots stumbled into.

the garden by LEAF

 

Tucked in a corner of the ultra mod FACT museum in Liverpool is a darling little cafe called The Garden. It’s the kind of eatery with light that somehow makes it easier to breathe. I knew I’d love it from just a glimpse round the corner, and had a feeling I’d be able to eat here. As a gf-vegan, my intuition is pretty strong in knowing if a place will bring me nutrients. 😏 It was an odd bunch in here from grannies bumbling about the postman being late to students with overear headphones that didn’t look up once.

what I had :: the sweet potato toast with the exotic garden tea

Love thy neighbor

Not far from there in the Ropewalks District was a trendy little joint with a name that had me trotting right up. Love Thy Neighbor. The mix in here was what I’d expect of the hipster area of town. You could just feel the creative entrepreneurial energy. Chefs in black hole-in-the-knee jeans with clean cut beards and posh hair designing this quarter’s menu. Fashion bloggers sipping coffee as they pore over the latest post with a serious candy red nail clutch on that white mug. Yogi babes in flowy tanks chatting over green juice with easy smiles, spreading love to the whole place.

what I had : the ABC apple-beet-carrot juice

Heswall coffee house

My chats with others though tend to happen in the smaller towns + villages. I went into Heswall and stumbled into this lovely space. What was on special? Vegan Coconut Milk Hot Chocolate. It was divine. Almost as lovely as my new friend from behind the till who is training to be a teacher.

what I had :: the coconut milk hot chocolate

GJ’s Coffee Shop

And then. There was GJ’s. I’d not typically walk into a spot like GJ’s as it’s not my vibe. But I was hungry after walking the Wirral Way, and this local spot was the only one for miles. That was made clear when I walked in, and there wasn’t a spot in the place! So, being English, I went ahead and sat right down at a table currently being occupied by two other parties. And we had a lovely chat. I kept my books and schedules and headphones away, and took a mo to learn about the life + world of another. That’s a different kind of learning. ❤️

what I had :: English breakfast tea

|| London ||

Once I made it to London, I couldn’t really stumble because it’s just so massive. You don’t want o stumble in London. You want to know where you’re going. So I sought out a couple vegan places.

the hive wellbeing

The Hive Wellbeing on Vyner Street wasn’t far from my Airbnb on the East End, where I lived as a kid. It was SO tasty a I was craving protein something horrible. I struggle with getting enough protein while traveling, so this yummy quinoa whats JUST what what I needed to set me straight. The decor and the clientele were a bit posh. I didn’t quite fit in to the fancier dress, mustachioed men, or super dark Americano vibe. But the food was truly delightful. I’m betting I could suffer through it again.

what I had :: Quinoa + avocado salad with an energy ball for dessert

rawligion

Rawligion just sounded too good NOT to go. I’m pretty sure I ate half of the products they offered. I also made a friend who is from Portugal (where I am currently). And thank goodness. I made less plans than I normally do for this leg of the trip. I needed an insider tour guide. This was a kind of pop in-pop out joint, which I hadn’t expected. Again, food was amaze. Can’t wait to come back for that 22g chocolate hemp protein shake

what I had :: quinoa lentil salad, aloe water, protein bar and truffles to go

I’ve just stepped off the plane in Porto and on the metro. On my way to the hostel and then, yep, you guessed it. A cafe.

Mad love,
J

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Driving on the left is kind of like life. So many friends + family expressed their fear and surprise that I was ready to drive on the left during this trip to England. But won’t you be nervous? How can you be sure? What about all the things that can happen? My pragmatic nature coupled with my stubborn streak won out. It just makes sense to rent a car given the terrain. Plus, if it scares me, then there is a good chance I need to say fuck fear and do it anyway.

And you know what? I was right. It has been WAY better having the freedom that comes with a car. Plus, I learned a thing or two. Let’s be real, you guys. Growth usually comes when you say fuck fear. 

Drive on the left || Live in the now

1. Leaders / Drivers don’t react; they anticipate. In this case, anticipate your reaction. You’re definitely going to be honked at. Like, FOR sure. You’re also going to pop a curb or two a day. You’re going to get turned around, and it’ll take you half an hour to get to the ferry when it should have taken 15 minutes, thus leading you to MISS the ferry. Do you catch my drift? So, determine when you first sit in that driver’s seat (on the right) how you’re going to react.

What’s my reaction to less-than-lovely interactions? Oopsies! Sorry lovelies! Just a silly American! I quite literally say this out loud in the car and SMILE to the bus honking/man pointing a finger/car zooming around my turtle-paced Vauxhall. Not like a “neener neener neeeeener” smile, but like a good-vibes “hope you’re having an awesome day” smile.

What’s my reaction to getting lost? Oooh I wonder what adventure I’m supposed to be moved toward because of this detour! I don’t usually say this one out loud. But I do think some version of it! Getting angry just isn’t a state I want to live in, because it’s not going to serve me, and then I can’t serve you. I keep my patterns of thought positive, so I don’t go there!

2. Where focus goes, energy flows. My mum gave me this suggestion. Jasmine, just keep the curb on the left. It was ALL I could focus on during my first 30m in the car. And you know what, the curb stayed on my left! What you focus on, you feel. So, in short. Stop focusing on dumb shit.

3. Be a BAUS. So I’m going to say this again for myself just as much as for you. Fuck fear. You gotta get in I that car and get into a space of certainty. Not just a lackluster ‘you got this’ state, but like a, ‘I am going to fucking OWN this shit’ state. I’ve driven in quite a few places in the world, and ONE common thread is that NO one has time for drivers that are timid. If you want to win at driving on the left (read : if you want to win at life) be BOLD and KNOW that you are going to OWN it.

4. Go slow to go fast. Remember when I said that leaders anticipate? Remember when I said that you’re going to get honked at? That’s because you’re going to be going the speed limit, and probably slower to start. You should. Work through this new car, this new place, this new experience s l o w l y first, and then speed it up. It’s going to condition in that BAUS-like quality that you  just worked on.

5. You are who you surround yourself with. I’ll just say this… Be careful who you drive around. When I’m about to drive my Nan, I get in a SUPER good place before I put that zoombucket into Reverse, because I KNOW I’m about to be told to slow down//move over//turn my windshield wipers on//insert command here. If you can, ride with people who push you to lead yourself. Love your family. Choose your peer group.

So, what do you say, lovely? Would you do it?

Mad love,

J

 

PS. Get a GPS. Not your iPhone. A GPS. #trustme

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Going to church is simply part and parcel of a souladventure. Whoa, whoa, whoa. Calm your jets! I don’t mean sitting in mass or kneeling on hard wood pews or kissing a holy book. I mean just BEING in a space of spiritual depth. Letting that light weight sink into your bones.

Souls // identity // being // we, at our core, are attached to the spiritual realm of this whole life thing. Souladventures, for me, are about getting lost as a way to find truth. Like it or not, to get to your truth you have to seek that next dimension, whether you call it the Universe // God // the Holy Instant // Vortex // Other. Putting the (dis)belief of organized religion aside, there’s no denying the spiritual presence felt in the longest church in the world. The Liverpool Cathedral.

To be quite frank, I didn’t know this was even a thing. If I had my way, it’d always find a small church on a lush hillside. One that could be easily mistaken for a cottage rather than a dwelling for grounded lightness. I guess you could say that I like my church like I like my relationships. Small and intimate. In the tiny moments that you have to play close attention — THAT is where we find inspiration to create movements. Only as we as individuals have our own tiny moments will  a collective of souls pulling for the underdog be born.

But. I needed postcards. And you don’t find postcards at one of those tiny moment churches.

As I pulled into the drive (on the left), I gave it doe-eyed look as it shouted back… How did you not know I was a thing? I’m kind of a big deal. It was immediately intimidating. It’s like the architect was made to create a fortress for God, rather than a space to sit and be with Her. As if she would need to assert her dominance in that way. 🙂 But underneath all that man made strength was the energy of centuries of human emotion. I let it wash over me. On the surface there was this frenetic human busyness, which wasn’t swayed by the much stronger presence : a deeply rooted calm. One that had stood the test of time.

And I immediately began to think of our country. Because it was Inauguration Day.

If you cut through the noise, the frenetic energy, the Tweet wars, the viral videos, the marches, the family feuds, the passive aggressive sneers… If you CUT through all that bullshit and get down to the truth, it’s that we all want connection to that deeply rooted calm.

Can we let that unite us?

I got my postcards. I also got my tiny moment. So, yes, on soul adventures, take me to church.

mad love, j

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A few weeks ago I posted (or should I say boasted) that I hadn’t been sick in all of 2016! Despite the facts that I taught Kindergarten for 5 months, moved back home, traveled to Coach Summit + California + the Outer Banks, I hadn’t a sniffle or a sneeze. How BADASS am I right? [Insert rolling eyes emoji here.]

Take a wild guess what happened at the turn of the new year? Yep. You got it. I got sick.

OK. So how?

My Dad is at home hacking up a lung, but I can’t possibly get sick, right?! So I pat his head (poor papa),  go out to lunch, and eat half of this piece of cake. And it was delicious. And I felt zero guilt.

I did, however, notice symptoms the next day. It wasn’t because I ate cake. It was because I ate a high-sugar food, spiking my body into acidity WHILE I was susceptible to an illness. Not. Good. Especially as I had to be on a plane in a little over a week.

Here’s what I did next.

Wellness Formula

My mentor introduced me to this botanical miracle at JUST the right time! I’m a huge advocate of letting Mother Earth heal our bodies. I am of the Earth, and believe I can be healed by nature’s medicine. It makes more sense to me to balance the body; to let food be my medicine. Then the body can actually heal itself. This is why my superfoods shake works to do! But the intense sugar hit + my general diet being less than the stellar usual + sickies in my environment = one sick me.

But truly. Here’s mRather than drinking coffee to wake up and Benedryl to sleep; rather than Advil to alleviate a headache or DayQuil to knock out the symptoms… I tackle the PROBLEM. There is some kind of imbalance in my body, and it’s probably something I did to knock the metaphorical scales. (Cough. Like eating cake when you’re susceptible to sickness. #rookiemove) So it’s also my job to right the balance.

AS SOON AS I felt a tickle, I picked this up at Whole Foods and took it 3X a day with food. It kept everything at bay and I was feeling about 85-90% of my normal energy. After Day 3 of this routine I thought, “Ok. I’m good.I don’t need to keep taking this.” By Day 5 I felt like death. I shouldn’t have stopped for 10 days! #rookiemove

 

B-Complex with Vitamin C || Stress Formula

I did a massive face palm and took it to Snapchat (cause where else?)! I quickly received a recommendation from a friend to start taking B-Complex with Vitamin C || Stress Complex. These two were his botanical cocktail during 18-19 hour days at total immersion seminars, so it has to work for my sinus woes, right? Off I go again to Whole Foods, and start popping one of those at the same time as the Wellness Formula.

And the next day, I woke up a BRAND NEW WOMAN! Ok, so maybe a little exaggeration, but I really did feel like my usual bubbly self.

Lemon Water!

When we add lemon to water, it has an alkaline effect in the body! You want that! Drink up, Sister. You should be having at least half of I your body weight in ounces, but ideally you’re drinking a ton more while your sick. Flush flush flush out that system with the gorgeous gift that is water.

Essential Oils

I am NOT an expert in Essential Oils. I am in ZERO way affiliated. What I do know is that they work. It’s really important that you don’t just go get them at a local store, because the purity of the oil has probably been tampered with! And remember, we want to be healed by the Earth’s bounties, so we shouldn’t be fucking with it. You should be able to apply them to the skin! My girl Jessi hooked me up with a roller full of essential oils of for Immunity Support that I call Defense! I’m also using oils for moisturizer now too, called Glow. If you want to know more, reach out to my girl! She’s the sweetest!

Get Your Greens

When we drink the greens, our immune systems make a power move! That rocket fuel calms down the acid-induced puffiness, so your little kickboxer of an immune system can knock that shit out! If possible go to a local juicer and choose the greenest of the green! If you have to hit up a Whole Foods or local natural grocer, I recommend Suja! Try to avoid Naked Juice (it’s not as naked as you’d think) and Bolthouse Farms (it’s not as farm fresh as you’d think).

Oh, and CLEMENTINES!

How amazing is it that the Earth ripens clementines at the same time that many of us suffer from winter colds? Vitamin C yourself, boothang.

Now that you’re doing all that hard work to bring your goddess back to balance in warp speed, you need to know what to avoid, which brings me back to my original issue. What put me at risk? SUGAR. So, lovely, I know sugar addiction is real, but please know that if you want to get back to your usual, then that gunk just isn’t serving you. The same can be said for dairy – cut the dairy and your’ll see your mucus output clear up.

Hope you’re feeling right as rain in Speedy Gonzales style.

Mad love,
J

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