Monthly Archives: February 2013

An Inspirational Lunch to Boost Creativity

I admit it – sometimes I knock my own socks off when it comes to food.

It helps that I try to outdo myself.

Lunch today was unbelievably scrumptious! And ironically, it was the result of my not wanting chicken salad!

But G was starving – he had been in front of the computer since about 9:00 and it was already 1:30. He didn’t get breakfast today, since I slept poorly last night and ended up going back to bed after I put The Little Ninja on the bus to school. I didn’t get up until after eleven. :-O

Soooo, when I opened the refrigerator to see what was there besides the leftover roast chicken from the night before last, I was feeling less-than-inspired.

Talking chicken in the fridge

But, since feeding him yogurt or a Kinder Egg wasn’t really an option, and we had sandwiches yesterday, I decided to get creative. I pulled out:

  1.  the chicken,which I had already shredded a bit (knowing it would end up in ramen or salad)
  2. a rib of celery
  3. a green onion
  4. some cilantro in a baggie
  5. a jalapeño
  6. a lime
  7. an avocado
  8. a pomegranite
  9. the mayo

With all the interesting ingredients out of the fridge, I went to the cupboard. (I’m not going to show you voyeurs my cupboard because it’s a disaster.) I grabbed the sliced almonds, and since there were only a few in the bag I got some pine nuts, too. And the pièce de résistance: La Choy Rice Noodles.

(Okay, I’ll give you a peek…)

La Choy Rice Noodles


With all my ingredients assembled, I started toasting a handful of nuts in a little frying pan on the stove. While that was happening, I diced up the celery, green onion and half the jalapeño. I squirted a bunch of mayo onto the chicken (I like my chicken salad to hold together but not be too mayo-ey.) Then I squeezed a bit of lime juice on it, and a bit on the avocado half, too, which I diced up. I wrangled with the pomegranite and managed to get most of the seeds out and into a little bowl. (Thank God I was wearing a dark blue shirt because it’s almost impossible to deal with pomegranite seeds and not get a stain on your clothes!)


  • Assemble salad – chicken, celery, green onion, cilantro, mayo, lime juice. Sprinkle with Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper.
  • Put some greens in a pretty bowl (I used baby arugula, my favorite)
  • Drizzle some Balsamic Vinegar and a nice oil over the greens (I used Lemon Olive Oil)
  • Put a generous scoop of chicken salad on top
  • Sprinkle the avocado chunks, pomegranite seeds, toasted nuts and rice noodles over the top

I’m telling you, it was absolutely fabulous! So good, in fact, I poured us some champagne with a splash of St. Germaine and a few pomegranite seeds for good measure. G forgave me straight away for not making breakfast.

The Best Chicken Salad Ever


If this isn’t a lunch to get your creative juices flowing, then try this.

And for another interesting chicken salad recipe, check out the link at the bottom.

Happy Eating! And if you’ve got an amazing salad recipe, please share it… I don’t always feel so inspired.



Categories: Delectables | Tags: , , , | 2 Comments

Connecting With Your Creative Muse

I am an “idea” person. Always have been. Always will be.

I come up with ideas all the time. My big problem is following through on them. Making them happen.

For example, I have been juggling a few book ideas in my head the past weeks.  I’ve started two and started research on the third.

Today I started thinking about a completely different book. I need my Muse to FOCUS!

Hesiod and the Muse

Hesiod and the Muse (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

So I dug through some old articles and came across just the one to help me get in the groove again. I thought I’d share….

Five Inner Feng Shui Tips for Connecting with your Inner Muse

1. Learn from Yoga: in yoga the restorative poses are the most difficult. Why? They’re the ones where it looks like you’re doing nothing. You may be lying with your butt against the wall with your legs up the wall. You may be folded over a bolster with your head touching your knees. And you stay like that for many minutes. They’re the hardest because you’re so used to being busy and doing something.

It takes a certain stillness to discover what’s wanting to be expressed.

To connect with your muse and restore your SELF takes being present, being in your body and just being. And this is a scary thing for most of us. It’s the stillness. “Shouldn’t you be doing something?” the voices scream.

Action Step: Start small. Take some time to ‘be.’ Thinking, day dreaming, doodling – they are all part of the creative process and will start exercising that creative muscle. Discover what you’re thinking and feeling. Just for you. Schedule it if you need to!

2. Create a Sacred Space: There is a reason both children and creativity come together in the Children & Creativity Gua. (To see where this area is in your home, read this.) This area is where one can go about birthing the self. It’s about play and joy and being an artist – all those things children naturally are until they’re told what to think. And then years later, even in a creative business, they search for fulfillment in the midst of busyness, having forgotten where their creativity really lives. If you had the perfect environment to create in, what would it look like? What would it feel like? What would inspire you? What would you surround yourself with? Remember, it can be however you wish. Write or draw how it would be.

Action Step: Whether you have a whole room or a small part of a room, take the essence of what you dreamed up for your sacred space and add it to your space. Perhaps a candle, an inspiring photo, your favorite mug, a clear table top, a comfortable chair and cozy blanket. Whatever nurtures that playful, curious, imagination of yours.

***A great enhancement for the Children & Creativity area of your home (or part of a room) is a child’s drawing or painting. ***

3. Remove Distractions.

What’s distracting you? Commitments you wish you hadn’t made? Too many trips to the supermarket because you’re not as organized as you could be? People who deplete your energy? Checking e-mails a million times a day? Too much clutter? List five distractions in your life.

What would you have the time, energy and space for if these were gone? Nurturing your creativity is way more important than doing something that drains your energy. Your creative muse is calling you.

Action Step: Today, choose one distraction and handle it. Now, take the time it frees up, to ‘be’- whether in nature, sitting in your sacred space or grabbing a pen or your laptop and writing whatever comes to mind.

4. Remove Clutter: The Children & Creativity area is the one area where clutter is allowed – but I’m talking about the kind of clutter that comes from having all your creative materials around you to mess with. They can be disorganized and messy  but if that inspires you to create then it’s okay.

However, there’s another type of clutter which is what you may be more used to – papers, things from the past, disorganized chaos when things aren’t where they belong, a desk that’s full of books, even creative materials that sit unused for weeks or months on end. If you’re surrounded by clutter, you can’t even think clearly, let alone tap into that deep part of you that’s tender and raw and just waiting to come out.

Fast Action Step: No need to wait. Get a box and scoop up everything on your desk, or in your sacred space – temporarily. This gives you a clear space to call on your muse, to discover what you’re waiting to say. That’s what’s important. Then later go through the box and save what you love and chuck the rest. No need to do the whole room right now – that’s a great way to sabotage yourself.

5. Act like a child: Children play, they mess around, they dream, their imaginations run wild, they’re curious. Children know they’re creative….they’re writers, they’re artists. And that’s how it is.

It’s the rest of us who need reminding. We’ve forgotten how to play, and forgotten that what makes us unique is the thing we’re here to express.

“Two boys arrived yesterday with a pebble they said was the head of a dog until I pointed out that really it was a typewriter.” — Pablo Picasso

Action Step: Spend time with a child. See the world from their view. Take 10 minutes to walk a few feet, looking at every little bug along the way. Be curious and open up to the world you may have forgotten in your busy, adult life.

Connect with your creative muse and you’ll be nourishing a deep part of yourself. As a bonus, the creativity you use in your work with others will be enhanced. You may even find that you’ll boost the bottom line in your business.

(Adapted from an article by Vicky White ©Copyright 2009 Life Design Strategies)

Here is another great post on cultivating creativity:

So tell me, how do YOU connect with your creative muse? Please share your thoughts.

Categories: Feng Shui, Writing | Tags: , , , , | 11 Comments

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