Live More Happy
Living Loving and Traveling the World
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The last post I wrote was about how I created a relationship I love. It was all 100% true and I am glad I posted it just in time.

This is a letter about how I ended that relationship about a week later.

As much as I wanted to turn inwards and deal with this privately, I know that I have invited so many of you reading this to join me on the journey of life and love we are ultimately all sharing. (I just choose to share mine a little more openly) With that comes great rewards and connection with people but it also comes with responsibilities, to myself, to the ones I care about (and write about) and to you, Reader, to be completely honest, vulnerable and open.

My most popular blog was about a terrible breakup I had that tore me apart. I learned so much from that experience and while I am still struggling with losing such a huge part of my life, I hope that this post can be just as popular, inspiring anyone to invite this same possibility into their life. (The hope for all my blog posts)

My love for Perry is real. From the minute we met I felt so at ease and comfortable with him. Everything was easy, no questions or doubts or struggles. We could talk for hours and laugh or sit in silence and watch the waves. We had adventures and enjoyed just relaxing. We talked about marriage and travels and never fought. We gave each other support and love but also space and trust to do what each of us needed to do in order to be our best selves.

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Right now, that includes going our own ways. It’s so hard to think about, I can’t believe it’s even true still but sometimes in life, love is not enough. The past few months we saw that each of us need different things in our lives right now to be the best we could be. We let each other go because we love each other that much.

Perry has been bravely battling chronic pain from his professional cycling career and I have stood by him every day, supporting him in his fight to get better. There is no cure besides time and an intense therapy and rehab schedule, about 4 hours a day, that I can’t really help with. Its been such a struggle but a lesson in patience, compassion and acceptance. I learned more about my own ability to love unconditionally, support someone else in their challenges while still putting myself and my needs as a priority. It’s easy to make someone else your focus when you are in love. Its easy to lose yourself and put yourself on the back burner in order to be fully present for someone else.

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I wanted so badly to DO something to help Perry. I found specialists, read articles, supported him through his intense schedule of appointments and treatments but still ended up disappointed when there weren’t any significant signs of improvements.

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My desire for him to get better so we could finally start our lives together added to his stress and hindered his improvement. Planning trips, planning our future, it all was on indefinite hold and we felt like we were in limbo.

Meanwhile he has been working full time as CEO of Merritt Bookkeeping, I have been growing my projects and companies. Juggling travel, volunteer work and social life while also trying to manage my own stress, anxiety and health has been crazy.

It has been quite the balance and we have done it well. We have always come from a place of love and kindness with each other. We don’t keep secrets and we don’t lie or try to manipulate each other. We had an honest conversation months ago about travel and business and all the different things we have going on. We knew that our lives were on two different tracks but we love each other too much to quit.

One day it was just time to adjust, get on our own track and release the tether to each other. We released each other with love, friendship, support and ease. Just as it was when we met, and the 10 months we spent together, we loved each other with peace and an emotional maturity I didn’t ever think was possible.

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These are uncharted territories. How do you break up with someone you love and get along with? How do you tell your friends and family? How do you adjust?

I don’t know, except to follow my heart, be kind and honest and continue to send love and my healing energy his way, even while giving him the space he asked from me. (It’s too hard to be checking in and “keeping in touch” right now.) I understand and I think too many people use the excuse:

“I know you said you wanted space but I just…”

If someone asks for space and you love them, give them their damn space. That is love. You asking for their time anyways is saying you don’t care about them as much as you care about yourself and your own needs. I see this happening all around me with my friends and I am committed to still respecting and caring for Perry in whatever aspect he needs of me while taking care of myself.

This is the easiest breakup I have ever experienced and the hardest. We are nice to each other, take turns watching over the cat and he even changed my locks for me when I was out of town and needed help dealing with a stalker. (That’s another story and some absolute bullshit I don’t need right now!)

Perry and I share the same values and dreams for the future, but the present moment calls for us to be apart. Who knows what the future holds but for now, I’m just crying in my bed, holding my cat. 

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With Love,

Lindsay

patient n tough

One of my favorite Rolling Stones songs goes:

“You can’t always get what you want

But if you try sometimes you find,

You get what you need”

I try to let this be my motto for life. It seems that we don’t often get what we want but life has a funny way of dishing out exactly what we need. The most painful and difficult situations have led me to be the strong, independent and resilient woman I am today. I don’t take back any of the struggle.

However recently I have been feeling like I’ve got more than my fair share. What is it I am needing right now? Is it God, the Universe, Fate? Who is testing my limits to love deeper and forgive greater?

Earlier this summer my birth mother, Kim, who I haven’t seen much in the last 20 years, came back in to my life, with the familiar promise of sobriety and wanting another chance.

I had just written a post about mother’s day, the pain she had caused me my entire life and how I had become better because of it. I had learned to take care of myself and to heal the deepest wounds. Now I was being faced with the challenge of putting my forgiveness and unconditional love to the test.  I reluctantly took her to lunch.

She was sober and going to AA meetings, seeing doctors and actively looking for work and housing, by using the computer at the public library. I debated on weather or not I was even going to answer her text message when she said she was back in San Diego for doctors appointments but I knew that I had never really made an effort to try to help her. Maybe this was my chance to really give her the forgiveness and love she needed through action. She had no one else. Every other good bridge was burned and the others had very ugly trolls under them.

I could see how hard she was trying and so I took the time to drive her to appointments instead of her taking the bus. I got her a phone so she could leave her number on job applications and lent her the laptop I had bought for my little brother to start his sophomore year of high school with. I set her up with profiles on sites like care.com, handy.com and couch surfer, helping her with her first ever email account and even let her stay at one of my Airbnb rentals during the busiest time of the summer.

I figured if I was going to give her any of my help I was going to give 100%. Because even if it didn’t work out, I know I tried my best. I gave everything I could.

Then she went missing.

She didn’t answer any of my calls on the phone I bought her. She stopped emailing me updates and my brother hadn’t heard from her either. For a month. I was actually worried something might have happened to her, or that she was just high in a van somewhere.

She resurfaced last week, bloodied and broke, no computer or phone, but some crazy story about being robbed by homeless people. It didn’t matter what she said. She could have said she was kidnapped by ninjas.

I am mad at myself for knowing it was going to happen that way. I am sad for my brother, who was trying to defend her crazy story and insisting it was okay, hoping to keep me from being upset.

I hadn’t even told him I had bought him the computer because I wanted it to be a surprise. I never want to disappoint him like she always does.

It didn’t matter. She had “lost” the computer AND told him about it. Double damnit.

My good deeds totally blew up in my face again and I have no choice but to pretend like it is all okay. I don’t want Kellen to be any more in the middle of the crappy situation and I know that being mad will do nothing to change anything. It never has and never will.

Biggest lesson in all of this, I guess.

At the same time I got a call from my dad. “Sue has breast cancer.”

WHAT? 

How is this possible? Sue is the healthiest person I know. Since the time she and my dad started dating about 15 years ago I could remember her eating organic and only buying all natural products. She does yoga and meditates every day. 

I feel so guilty saying this, but I was expecting my birth mom to get sick already. I’m surprised she has made it this far. How could Sue be the one getting sick? Its Kim who deserves it. Kim has been poisoning herself for decades. She abandoned me when I was 5 because she couldn’t stop getting fucked up.

When my brother was younger I would explain to him about her disease. I said “Some people’s moms get sick with cancer, our mom is sick with addiction”

Damn, now I’ve got both.

Sue loves me and taught me about thrift shopping, crafting and conscious living. Sue got me my first marketing consulting job with a non profit she worked with. Sue was there for me even when I was a total asshole. She put up with me and my dad’s bickering and taught us to be more patient and kind to each other. Sue has mothered me into the woman I am today. 

So, why does  bad stuff happen to good people? 

I guess because we can handle it. Sue has been the most positive and action oriented person I have ever seen, dealing with a couple aggressive cancerous tumors. She continues to inspire me with her grace and the outlook she is keeping on this situation. 

Her strength gives me strength to handle these lemons that are constantly being thrown. 

Meanwhile, Kim is battling addiction and mental illness that I think is her fault. I am mad and I feel so sad for her. She has allowed her life to go down a path that is so empty, lonely and sick.

I can’t do anything else for her but love her and forgive her.

I can do something for Sue.

I have put together a fundraising campaign, like the many I have done in the past, to help my parents with the incredible medical bills that are racking up just this month. With the low dose chemo treatment and nutrition therapy that Sue needs, medical bills this month are close to $23,000. Insurance doesn’t cover it and their park ranger pensions don’t cover much either.

Fundraising to help my parents is the least I can do to help repay them a tiny bit for the endless love and support they have shown me all these years. Sue did not have to step up to be there for me the way she did but she did it with true unconditional love and I am sad to get the opportunity to show her gratitude this way, but hey,

“You can’t always get what you want

But if you try sometimes you find,

You get what you need”

To learn more about Sue Pelley’s cancer treatment watch the video below or visit our GoFundMe page. Thank you.

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Writing has been my greatest tool for understanding myself better.

It has been a therapy when the thoughts and words are swirling in my head, repeating themselves over and over, out of my control. Until I put the pen to paper or begin to type, I feel as if the words have control over me. My thoughts run away from me and writing them down is the only way to take the control back.

Writing makes me feel free. It also makes me feel naked.

The last few months I really challenged myself to be more open, more vulnerable. When my friends learn of my stories they have often said I need to write a book. I’ve always cringed at the idea.

“Maybe if I write it in a pen name! I don’t want random people to know my past or my secrets!”

The last nine months I have found the courage to share some of my most personal battles and the response has been incredible. Thousands of “random people” have read about my struggles as an entrepreneur, shared in my journey to overcome my greatest heartbreak and cried with me when sharing their own stories. Random people have become close friends.

When I hit publish on the first real scary blog post about my cheating ex last September, I held my breath. A huge part of me didn’t want anyone to read it. I knew it was an ugly truth and sad. It was something I needed to face in order to be set free from it. It was the first time a blog post I had written on my personal site had seen over a thousand views.

(My ex has since written his side of the story, and I feel like its only fair to share the other side. As he puts it, “its pretty dang cute.”)

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After writing about my mother’s addictions and my lifelong battle with anxiety last month, I was overwhelmed with support and love. People I had never met, people who I have only been connected to online, reached out to say they knew what I was feeling and they were looking for the same relief and peace. My hypnotherapist received 8 new clients from my post and besides being glad to help my amazing friend Kristyn grow her practice, I am in awe of how many people took proactive action to find their happiness.

My little blog post did that. Wow. Powerful stuff.

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Checking my google analytics after a scary blog post gives me heart palpitations. Most people are excited when 2,000 people visit their site. I feel exposed.

Turning hundreds of random people into real connections based on shared human experience is a life changing experience and scary as hell.

I’m not writing this to brag but to give myself the courage and recognition I need to continue to write. So many crazy things have happened and are happening to me all the time and if I can share a little bit of my insight, who knows how many people will find the tiniest bit of wisdom or inspiration to make changes in their life for the better.

own your story

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Happy Pie Day! “Why is it Pie Day?” Well the date is March 13, or 3.14, also Pi (π) the ratio of a circle’s circumference to its diameter.

Call me nerdy for celebrating this day with one of my favorite decadent treats, but why not? It is a great excuse to indulge in America’s most infamous desert.

I have committed to eating much healthier and swore to kick my dessert addiction by finding acceptable replacements so I could still enjoy some of my favorite tasty pleasures.

Here are a few recipes for healthy, delicious pie!

Paleo Pie Crust: 

Ingredients:

  • 2/3 cup ground almonds
  • 1/3 cup coconut oil
  • ¼ tsp sea salt
  • 2 tbsp cold water

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 F
  2. Combine all ingredients except water
  3. Gradually add water to thicken dough
  4. Press into pie plate
  5. Pre-bake approximately 10 minutes, while arranging filling, or until lightly browned

The All American Classic APPLE PIE! (Gluten Free and Paleo!) by Ancestral Chef 

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Ingredients For the Filling:
  • 5 medium-sized apples, peeled and diced (granny smith or honeycrisp)
  • 4 tablespoons coconut oil
  • 1/2 cup raw honey
  • 1 tablespoon coconut flour
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/8 teaspoon cloves
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
Directions for the Filling:
  1. Melt the coconut oil in a pot on medium heat.
  2. Add the honey, apples, and spices.
  3. Stir the mixture to cover the apples with the oil, honey, and spices.
  4. Add in the coconut flour and mix well.
  5. Add in the vanilla extract and turn off the heat.
  6. Leave to cool for 10 minutes.
Making the Pie:
  1. Preheat the oven to 350F.
  2. Spoon in the apple pieces and sauce into the pie crust.
  3. Cover the pie with the strips of pastry, creating the lattice. Press a fork along the edge to push the pastry down.
  4. Bake for 25 minutes.
  5. Serve hot or cold.

Healthy Pumpkin Pie (KILLER GOOD!) by the Healthy Foodie

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Ingredients:
  • 1½ cup graham flour
  • ½ cup old fashioned rolled oats
  • 75g crushed pecans
  • ¼ cup raisins
  • 2 tbsp coconut oil
  • 2 tbsp liquid honey
  • 1 tbsp blackstrap molasses
  • ¼ cup unsweetened applesauce
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ½ tsp ground cinnamon
  • ¼ tsp ginger
  • ¼ tsp allspice
Filling
  • 3 cups pumpkin puree
  • ½ cup 0% fat Greek yogurt
  • 1 cup 1% fat cottage cheese
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 2 whole eggs
  • ½ cup egg whiles (or 4 egg whites)
  • ¼ cup maple syrup
  • 2 tbsp blackstrap molasses
  • 3 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp each: allspice, ginger, freshly grated nutmeg
  • ½ tsp ground clove
  • ½ tsp salt
Crumble (do NOT leave that out… it just adds so much to the pie)
  • 30g crushed pecans
  • ¼ cup oats
  • ¼ tsp cinnamon
  • 2 tbsp raisins, chopped
  • 1 tbsp maple syrup
Most importantly, share with friends and loved ones and enjoy!

 

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Thanks to my new Jay Kordich juicer and my health Jedi master, Drew Canole at FitLife.TV, I have been juicing fresh veggies and fruits almost daily since the start of 2013. On top of my new clean eating habits and daily exercise, I have found juicing has made a significant improvement in my life lately.

I have more energy; I wake up more refreshed, happier and excited to start the day with a juice!

I have been following the delicious recipes online and from Drew’s best selling book, but I decided to make my own concoction to share with you.  In honor of flu season and my travels coming up in a few days, I wanted to boost my immune system with some extra Vitamin C.

Forget flu shots, you can keep yourself healthy by knowing nature’s best kept secrets!

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“The Happy Flu Fighter”

4 leaves of kale – Kale is full of so many good things! Iron, calcium, potassium, vitamins, minerals, fiber and detoxifies your system. It also has anti cancer properties. Don’t believe me that this is the super leaf? Read more here and find great recipes! 

6 tangerines / cuties– These are packed with vitamin C and taste so yummy! Helps balance out the kale with a tangy sweet flavor.

3 carrots – Carrots are full of vitamins and antioxidants, great for your eye sight and taste delicious. More health benefits and recipes for carrots here. 

½ lemon – lemons are high in vitamins, toxins, unwanted minerals and other substances that are pushed out from the body. (Lemon with water is a good morning and evening ritual to pick up for many reasons!) 

1 granny smith apple– Apple a day keeps the doctor away and adds a yummy sweetness to the juice.

2 handfuls of fennel – Fennel is packed with vitamin C, fiber, potassium, health boosters like phytonutrients and antioxidants and other really amazing benefits, especially for women during our least favorite time of the month. Read more benefits and other yummy recipes.

1 inch of gingerSO MANY HEALTH BENEFITS OF GINGER! This is an amazing little root packed with immune boosters, gastrointestinal and anti-inflammatory effects. Besides, it makes everything taste so good.

1 beet – beets are super healthy and add a beautiful color to your juice. I am not a huge fan of the flavor but with all the other delicious fruits and veggies I added make it taste incredible. Read more on beets and be ready to be blown away!

Want to be healthier, happier and have incredibly energy and vitality too? Get Drew Canole’s book for inspiration, information and killer recipes. 

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“Beet Does A Body Good!”  – Linz

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Join the quest to Live More Happy! :) 

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If you have ever taken a health class or even seen a food documentary on Netflix, you already know that the majority of what we regularly put in our body is bad for us. So, why do we do it? It’s easy, fast, convenient and oh, so delicious.

What if being healthy was all of those things?

SURPRISE! It can be. You just have to stop making excuses for yourself, like I did, and find the simple solutions all around us.

I love eating bad. I love donuts, doritos, ice cream, hot dogs and especially carne asada burritos.

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I told myself because I was young, I should eat what I want and that I should enjoy it while I had the metabolism to handle it. I savored every brownie and burger, but I knew that to be healthy, you must eat healthy. I ate like a frat boy until my 24th birthday in December and then said goodbye to my college student diet with a California burrito and a delicious cinnamon sugar monkey bread.

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My dedication to “clean eating” then began with the book, Clean Start, by Terry Walters, given to me as a birthday gift. The book has recipes for all seasons, as well as nutritional information of different foods and the benefits of “clean eating.” Eating clean means removing chemicals and processed foods from your diet, using fewer ingredients and more plants. Aside from being good for you, clean eating is better for the environment by reducing waste, contamination, improves local environment and economy and is simply the quickest way to feeling your best!

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This book took the fear away from the “healthy eating” stigma. The recipes are for things I can do with my little kitchen experience and they look and taste delicious.

 I have learned that a healthy, filling meal can be prepared in under 10 minutes and by spending a little extra time cutting veggies and making my own trail mix of almonds and dried fruit, I could curb my snack cravings throughout the day, while fueling up between meals. I’ve even found ways to trick my tummy into thinking I was eating ice cream in bed, a favorite past time of mine.

Eating clean has been a fun adventure the last month, but it is just the beginning. I acquired a juicer last week, thanks to my friends at FitLife.TV and am loving all the amazing juices filled with veggies and nutrients I am now enjoying daily.  I am falling more in love everyday with my new feelings on food, my energy and glowing skin. (Even my nail technician mentioned my neck and face looked thinner and healthier!)

You don’t need a gym membership or to pay for expensive training or classes to be fit, either. I make all my workouts fun, unique and enjoy the gorgeous outdoors we are blessed with almost year round here in California.

The way to Live More Happy is to Live More Healthy, so follow my journey through the world of healthy living, the easy, inexpensive and fun way!

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Travel is one of the most rewarding experiences a person has in their life. Whether it is a family vacation, a semester abroad or a backpacking trip with friends, these experiences not only stay with us our whole lives, but shape who we are and how we see the world.

In today’s age we are lucky enough to have easy and affordable means of travel to just about anywhere in the world and with technology and the internet we can book these arrangements from anywhere with a press of a button. It is no doubt remarkable and in a lot of ways makes our planet a much smaller place. Where we could once only read about or see on a screen we can now visit ourselves, embarking on great journeys and having exciting adventures of our own.

It is a wonderful thing to see so many people of our time going out in to the world to see, touch, taste and experience first hand the wonders of different cultures and while it is breaking down barriers that once made us feel so different from one another, it is also an  opportunity for us to become better global citizens.

Our neighbors are not just the people on our street or in our city, they are in the bordering country or opposite continent where most of our products are produced and services provided. We depend on each other so much more than we realize, not just for business, but for assistance. There are so many organizations out there doing great things to assist our global neighbors in need and yet there is still a great need for more help.

Instead of just visiting these amazing places, taking cool photos in front of a monument or pristine nature scene, I have sought out to be an active assistant to the communities I visit. Even if it means collecting garbage from a popular hiking trail or beach, I want to be a positive impact, not just another tourist stopping by for a photo op. In each trip I take I look for a different cause I am passionate about and an organization I would be a good fit to volunteer with.

Dr. Interns is one of those organizations. With a mission of bringing sustainable healthcare solutions to very capable, developing parts of the world they are connecting college students interested in the medical field as well as travel to experiences in the world outside their own neighborhood. Dr. Interns is creating a new kind of world traveler; a traveler who is making a difference. I spent 3 weeks in India with Dr. Interns this Summer as their marketing director and was inspired to get even more involved with global issues.

I am excited to share my experiences around the world, assisting with the marketing and awareness campaigns for great causes, telling their story with the goal of inspiring many more to travel and to be active global citizens. Changing the world is easier than it looks. Don’t believe me? Try it.

-Lindsay M Hawley

 

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I knew my trip to India would not be a vacation by any means, but nothing could have truly prepared me for the sights, smells, intense heat and humidity and most of all the extreme differences in culture from what I have grown up with.
I have traveled all over the world and experienced the poverty in which much of our world lives in and it is never easy to stomach, especially when you realize the cycle in which it continues. However, for me, the most unsettling part of this whole trip has been the serious social issues and lack of equality amongst the people, both because of the caste system and the serious sexism.


Being raised by a liberal, single father I grew up being told I could do anything and that not only was I equal to every man, but every human is equal and deserves the same rights. It has been drilled in to me from the minute I was born and so it is still so appalling to me to see the way other cultures view and treat other humans. In a few occasions I have lost my cool and have been fed up with the constant sneers, awkward and intimidating stares and most recent invasion of privacy by one of the male staff at our “safe & secure” ashram where we are staying. I realize these things are harmless and comparatively speaking, laughable, considering not too far from this part of the world women are still being stoned to death for “disobeying” their husbands. I have to remind myself that Ghandi, this nations peaceful leader in freedom and human rights did not achieve his dreams through rage and outburst but by compassion, tolerance, resiliance and perseverance. My passion must not be misguided but focused on the solutions that will bring a balance to this world.


As I sat in the tiny one room medical clinic/elementary school in the slums of Barota, India, I watched as Dr. Mistry wrapped a little girls arm in an ace bandage while he questioned her father as to why the 9 year old had never been to school. He was mostly blind and the mother worked full time to support the four children so the little girl had to work cutting vegetables in a local restaurant. I thought about what this little girl’s life would be like. It was almost too easy to predict and the doctor later confirmed it was all too common that these girls worked from the youngest age until the time they were married off around 14 or 15 to then continue the cycle.


Later in the day more little girls showed up to the doctor’s office, peeking their faces through the door way, shyly spying on me, curious to this strange looking visitor but too shy to enter or speak. The doctor told me that the girls attended the classes that he and his wife ran at the clinic every morning and they were avid learners. The girls are the most passionate about learning, he told me. The young females seeking education are the moving force to building up the country to be strong and healthy he said.

This is why he has left his private practice of 21 years in New Jersey, to return to the slums of his home town of Barota in Gujarat, with his wife, educating the children and providing affordable and available healthcare.


It was such an inspiration to meet someone who walked away from their comfortable lives in the US to return to where the help was needed, where it will make the biggest impact and where it is much appreciated.
The next time I returned to the clinic/school I brought a group of college students, members of Dr. Interns summer medical internship program who I have come to India to help support through marketing and program expansion.

The students were as excited as I were to hear Dr. Mistry’s story and I was most excited to see the little girls who had gathered the courage to come sit by me and even posed for pictures for me and with me. They mimicked my English and were obviously hungry to learn anything I had to teach them. I was excited to meet these girls who’s situation seemed grim but who’s futures looked bright.


The next time I returned with an even larger number of excited students and arms full of school supplies including all my favorite things: crayons, colored pencils, markers, coloring books, chalk, UNO cards, notebooks, pencils and erasers. We were happy to contribute to the Mistry’s school/clinic and I was excited to speak more about expanding our program to assist with their work. This is what I came to India to do. This is what I am on this planet to do.
The little girls ran from their houses to greet me in the street with cheerful “Hi’s” and hugs with huge smiles on their faces.

As we sat around Dr. Mistry’s office/clinic/school the room quickly filled with small children who were all excited to see strange new faces in their neighborhood. The energy in the room was amazing and even though the little children had trouble keeping quiet while the doctor explained his story ( now for the third time for me, yet still as genuine and full of passion) it was sweet to see how much it meant to them that we had come and with supplies for their school.

I wanted to hug each one of them and tell them I was so proud of them for getting an education and to stay with it. I wanted to let each one know that they were special and worthy of having a better life, one of opportunity and freedom but with the little Gujarati I knew I was stuck with formalities but the love and compassion was felt between both the children and us.

We poured our love on to them with smiles and photos and laughter and found a renewed purpose in our work here in India, something that is easy to lose sight of when faced with the giant hurdles of social issues. However, like when we spent the day delivering reusable waterbottles to the children enrolled in school in the rural village of Ratunpura we realized with every act of love and support, regardless of how small, making a difference in the life of a child is the greatest action a person can take in life.

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