Monday, January 23, 2012

Year of the Dragon

Happy Chinese New Year(Spring Festival)! January 23, 2012 marks the year of the Dragon according to the Chinese Lunar/Solar calendar. Traditionally, the New Year will begin in the middle of the 12th month with the second new moon and end in the middle of the first month with a waxing full moon. This time period for the Chinese is one of the most important festivals. This is a time that is focused on the home and the family. Many will partake in dinner feasts with family and household cleaning in preparation for the year. The New Year is one that last about 15 days, with each day symbolizing something different.
Photo Credit: L.Marie

Last year was a Rabbit year, this year is a Dragon year, and next year is a Snake year.  2011 was a relaxing(healing) year and  2012 will be a transitional(wild) year . A Dragon year is one that should be used to follow passions, ambitions, and take risks. The element that governs Dragon is wood, however the element that is associated with this 2012 year is water, which indicates happiness and success will be prominent. Be independent, communicate, and take risks because returns will be high. 

I will be following the Chinese tradition and will be clearing up my room and discarding items that were no longer necessary.  A clear space equals a clear mind. I will also use 2012 to follow my passions and allow my cautious Taurus temperament to take some risks. 

Will you honor the Chinese New Year by spring cleaning? What traditions do you follow?


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Friday, January 20, 2012

Eat Like a West Indian, Lose Weight?

December 18, 2011, I left for Haiti to visit my grandmother. I was a tired, overworked individual with dark circles. I left January 5,2012, a new person; energized, well rested without dark circles. In three weeks I changed my life around. I wondered, if I ate and slept like they do in Haiti, would I drop weight and be more rested. The answer- yes!

One of the first words out of my grandmother's mouth when I arrived, was that I looked horrible. And she was right. Three weeks prior to me leaving for Haiti, I was going to bed by 7am on average and waking up at 11am on average. I was getting sometimes less than 3 hours of sleep a day, there were a few days I did not sleep at all. One day I went to bed at 10am. I was filling my schedule with work and obsessing with growing my company Lisa Inks. My decent eating habits went out the window. I was eating at all hours of the day or not eating at all. I was sick in a different way. My body was slowly 'dying'. The last night before I went to Haiti I did not sleep before my flight and I felt it in my heart. My body felt odd, my heart was beating differently, and I could barely hold a conversation.

I believe that I went to Haiti before I crashed. In a no arguing type of way, my grandmother stated that I had to go to bed early and she stood true to her word. I was in bed by 7pm every night and up by 6:30am every morning. By 8am,  I was eating a large breakfast. By 2pm, I was eating a large lunch. That was it. I ate two meals a day and I was not hungry. If I did feel a little hungry, I was eating a piece of fruit.

I was eating fresh food; chicken, fish, beef, goat, that was butchered that same day. Fruit and vegetables straight from the tree. My body was loving the care and attention. As a result, I dropped some pounds, cut some inches, and turned my sleeping habits around. I now go to bed by 10pm and wake up by 7:30am. I eat breakfast and have a large lunch. I do not feel hungry later in the evening and the only thing I consume after 7pm is fruit or nuts/seeds.

It is hard for me to believe that I changed my horrible habits, but I did. I feel great and will keep up this new lifestyle.

Has a vacation ever changed your lifestyle for the positive?


First Few Days

First Few Days

First Few Days

First Few Days

Last Days

Last Days

Last Days

Last Days

On any given day, you can find L.Marie on her website,, on Facebook,, and on Twitter, . Join the conversation and interact.

Sunday, January 15, 2012

15 Must Read Books While Detoxing

Detoxing is not only for the body, but it is also for the mind and soul. While cleansing your body, it is also ideal to surround yourself with positive thoughts. For the past 20 days I have tried to read, listen, and watch positive things. I have been listening to Esther and Jerry Hicks tapes and I also have been listening to Quick and Dirty Tips podcasts. I have been rereading some books of mine that I would like to recommend to you. 

  1. 12 Steps to Raw Food - This book by Victoria Boutenko was the first book I ever read regarding raw foods and health. Excellent book and easy to follow, it really helped me while on my first ever detox 2 years ago. Kindle Edition
  2. Heal Thy Self - Queen Afua writes an excellent book for those of African descent. She speaks about how she healed herself from illness, by changing her diet. Overall a well rounded book that speaks on diet, spirituality, and fitness. 
  3. Green for Life - Victoria Boutenko writes about how consuming greens is more ideal for our health. She also talks about how her family was extremely ill, but reversed everything when their diet changed. Kindle Edition
  4. African Holistic Health - This book by Llaila O. Afrika is a great book for those of African descent who are interested in health. 
  5. Light Eating for Survival  - This book is a rare find. When I purchased it last year, I was able to get it for 8 dollars used, now I see on Amazon that it is 12 dollars used and 186 dollars new. Marcia Madhuri Acciardo wrote this book in the 70s and was a pioneer in the raw food movement. What I like about this book is that she has recipes for live foods (raw), yet she used simple equipment. 
  6. Juicing for Life - I love this book by Cherie Calbom. She provides great juice recipes and also gives the reader juice combination for specific illnesses. Kindle Edition
  7. Ask and its Given - I highly recommend this book and any other Esther and Jerry Hicks books. They are filled with great lessons and inspiration. Kindle Edition
  8. The Alchemist - Paul Coelho delivers with this book, the lesson instilled is invaluable. Kindle Edition
  9. The Power of Now - Eckhart Tolle is known for the book A New Earth, but I like the Power of Now better. This book is all about living in the now. Kindle Edition
  10. The Four Agreements - Wow, talk about a quick read that will have you thinking for a long time. Don Miguel Ruiz really leaves the reader with questions about the way they live their lives. I finished this book a few weeks ago and I am always thinking about it. Kindle Edition
  11. Awareness - This book by Anthony de Mello is one that you probably won't agree with everything he writes, but it will leave you thinking about human nature and awareness. Kindle Edition
  12. Many Lives, Many Masters - I love this book by Dr. Brian Weiss. In this book he documents a past life regression that he performed on a client of his. It is a very interesting book that discusses the possibility of past lives. Kindle Edition
  13. Life After Death: The Burden of Truth - This is a good book for those who are Deepak Chopra fans. In this book he discusses what happens after death. 
  14. Energy Medicine - This book by Donna Eden is good for those who would like work on balancing energy throughout the body. Kindle Edition
  15. Poisons in Your Food - This book was originally written in 1969 and then a 2nd edition was written in 1991. It is amazing that the same issues we are facing now were prevalent back then. The author, Ruth Winter, was seen as a sensationalist and now in 2010 it is apparent that her concerns over toxins in our foods were correct. 
15 books that you can read while on your detox or just in general. I hope you enjoy!

Do you have any books that you would like to add? 

Note: This post was originally written: 8/20/2010 on my blog  L.Marie Dreams
I am a part of the Amazon Associates Program. 

~ L.

Monday, January 9, 2012

Another Transformation

Six months ago, I wrote about losing interest in my passions and life purpose. I wrote the following:

Today, over on my personal blog, I wrote about losing interest in my passions and life purpose. Since April, I have been unable to tap into certain gifts of mine (dreams, spirit guides, etc). I wasn't sure what was going on, but I assumed that I just lost my touch and it was time to move on. I decided to take some time off to relax and reevaluate.

Closed Lids is something I started almost 2 years ago as a medium for me to interpret dreams for individuals, but over time I realized that Closed Lids can be much more and decided I wanted to change directions. It first started out with in my own personal life; I realized that sleep and diet played an important role in recalling my dreams, thus I started posting more about diet and sleep. Then I realized that having a sound mind and soul also played a part in me tapping into all my gifts. Eventually, I came to the conclusion that even the surrounding environment plays a part in becoming whole. I started to toy with the idea that Closed Lids can be a wellness company that touches on many different topics; dreams, health, spirituality, environmental issues, etc.

During my break I felt guilty that I started Closed Lids as a new age/dream company, but now wanted to include various topics. I then realized that just like life, Closed Lids, is undergoing change and transformation. Things go through change.  Without change, progress cannot be made. Once I realized that it was okay to change and transform, it seemed like my block lessened a bit. I hope that in next coming months, you the readers, will be patient and supportive in the new direction. I am not sure where Closed Lids is going, but I do know that it is somewhere positive.

Six months later, I am at another crossroad. I have made the decision to combine my personal blog with Closed Lids.  The posts over on the other blog are transferable and could easily be written on Closed Lids. That blog started out as an outlet for me, while I was in graduate school. I was bored and never written creatively, I decided to start a blog that would give me a place to share my stories and thoughts. Overtime, my blog, L.Marie Dreams became almost like an online journal. I discussed weight, love, life, my journey, etc. Even though that blog had minimal traffic, it was a place that I called home, but even a home needs change. With the opening of my new business, Lisa Inks, it became difficult to maintain three sites, especially since L.Marie Dreams and Closed Lids were so similar. By combining both blogs I am completing the circle; I will be posting on my life, my challenges, alongside with dreams, wellness, spirituality, and the environment. I will share personal stories and more. I hope with this change you will learn more and stick with me as I try new things.

I will be adding posts from L.Marie Dreams onto Closed Lids . I hope you enjoy these past stories.


On any given day, you can find L.Marie on her website,, on Facebook,, and on Twitter, . Join the conversation and interact.

Get in Shape in 11 Healthy Ways

If you are like most people, you have made a New Year’s resolution to get in shape, eat healthy, and change your lifestyle.

This is a common resolution that most people never follow through on; gym memberships and diet meal plans are purchased, but nothing ever is completed. For a couple of months the gyms get packed and it seems like people are beginning to take their health seriously. Then March comes along and the gym starts to look bare again.

To start a healthy lifestyle change and to get in shape takes a few steps. 

  1. Get at least 6-9 hours of consistent sleep a night
  2. Eat a hearty breakfast
  3. Drink water…a lot of it
  4. Be the change that you want to see
  5. Find an accountability partner
  6. Forget fads, make a change that will be consistent with your lifestyle
  7. Consume herbs/foods that prevent bloating: pineapple, Greek yogurt, peppermint/ginger tea
  8. Consume herbs/foods that aid with digestion: papaya, oatmeal, ginger
  9. Consume herbs/foods that prevent water retention: quinoa, parsley, sea salt
  10. Exercise! Take a Zumba class, walk, swim, go on the elliptical, jog, lift weights. Be active for at least 40-60 minutes about four times a week
  11. Meditate and visualize your goal

With a few simple adjustments, your New Year’s resolution can last for the entire year and beyond!

What were some of your resolutions for this year? Do you have any tips to add to the list?


On any given day, you can find L.Marie on her website,, on Facebook,, and on Twitter, . Join the conversation and interact.
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