Fruit Sticker Art and Healthy Eating
We constantly hear “eat fruits and vegetables” everyday! Yeah, Yeah, Yeah! How many times do I have to tell you? Or… how many times will I hear this in a day? Eat at least 5 servings of each – everyday! Well, when I started this campaign in 2010, my dilemma was: “what do I do with all those fruit stickers?
In the summer of 2010, I started an art project collecting all the stickers from fruits and vegetables. Sorry this was not one of my original ideas. I collected as many as I could and added them to a sheet of watercolor paper. At first the page seemed big compared to those small stickers. Then it became an obsession – where I had co-workers at lunchtime offer me their stickers. I found plastic surfaces worked best to hold the sticker flat until I got home and could add it to my sticker collection.
More than a year passed, but I never forgot my art project. I continued to save the stickers and applied them to multiple surfaces. With the original Sticker Art shown above, there are several layers of stickers and multiple layers of acrylic gel to hold it all in place. I often frame my pieces of art work from the stickers and give as gifts. They make a great hanging of art for any kitchen collection of art displayed above the countertops. Here’s what you can do to have the same thing in your kitchen….
Use a 9”x12” canvas sheet or a sheet of 140 lb watercolor paper. You can use other surfaces like art board, foam board, construction paper, canvas board, glass bottles or coffee/tea tins, etc. Remember the bigger the surface the longer it takes to fill it up.
If using Paper or Canvas:
Add stickers randomly – and be sure to add going in different directions including upside down, etc. If you have a lot of one sticker, create a pattern. Notice my kiwi sticker pattern. Use larger vegetable stickers to anchor a pattern or anchor a corner of the page. Use glue stick if sticker curling occurs. Mod Podge (or my favorite – Liquitex brand Matte Medium) works the same as a wetglue stick and is great for larger surfaces and/or sealing to preserve with a coat of matte medium. When you’ve had enough, add a final coat of acrylic gloss medium and let it dry at least 48 hours. Now it’s ready to frame (glass is optional) although it would protect your finished work in a sometimes steamy kitchen. This piece is fun when framed with a floating picture frame (where the paper is sandwiched between two pieces of glass). This project can also be on note card stock. See the video for other ideas and suggestions.
Glass – jars/canisters/etc. are great surfaces for the stickers since those tacky little stickers adhere very well to glass. Follow the above recommendations for patterns and make sure you put a final coat of matte medium to preserve it. This project looks great on odd shaped glass bottles / containers.
Tins – I have tea tins that I used to collect the stickers at work and liked it so much I kept the stickers on the tin. Always finish off with a coat or two of matte medium.
Note, this is an ongoing project and may take a year or more to complete. Although a family of four may have enough stickers to complete this in a matter of months. Don’t get discouraged. Since this is an ongoing project, you get to see the project unfold the more stickers you add. I keep a 5” x 7” canvas board in my kitchen to add stickers every time I peel them off of fruit or veggies. Now it’s become a fun and ongoing project – a great gift for your favorite cook.
A little background history on the stickers:
7 out of 10 items in grocery store shelves contain ingredients that have been genetically modified. Fruit and vegetables do not come with nutrition labels but they do have stickers (PLU – Price Look Up Code) which contain pertinent information.
Next time you decide to purchase that apple or cut a slice out of that melon, consider the PLU sticker. This sticker will tell you whether the fruit was organically grown, genetically modified, or produced with chemical fertilizers, herbicides or fungicides.
PLU stickers that have 4 digits and begin with a “3″ or “4″: produce is conventionally grown. This means that this produce was sprayed with weed killers and chemical pesticides.
PLU stickers that have 5-digits and start with “8″: produce was genetically engineered (man intervened by manipulating the genes to produce a larger or brighter colored food). This produce may have been chemically treated.
PLU stickers that have 5-digits and start with “9″: produce was raised organically. You can be sure that this produce was not treated with any chemicals.
Remember, 8s not Great and 9 is Fine!
Note: the adhesive used to stick the PLU onto the fruit is edible but the sticker itself is not. The codes have been in use since 1990. Currently, there are over 1300 universal PLU codes assigned.
4139: Conventional Granny Smith apple
94139: Organic Granny Smith
84139: Genetically Modified Granny Smith
Information in italics was supplied byhttp:/rawearthliving.wordpress.com/2010/02/27/what-does-the-number-on-a-fruit-sticker-mean/
In my video I mention the Dirty Dozen and the Clean 15… The Dirty Dozen are foods you should only buy organic since they have been identified as containing the highest levels of chemicals and pesticides when grown using conventional farming methods. They include: apples; strawberries; spinach; celery; grapes; sweet bell peppers; nectarines; peaches; blueberries; kale/collard greens; lettuce; potatoes.
The Clean 15 are foods that contain the lowest levels of pesticides and you don’t have to buy organic. They are: onions; sweet potatoes; sweet corn; asparagus; mangoes; pineapples; sweet peas; kiwi; cabbage; eggplant; cantaloupe; avocado; watermelon; grapefruit; mushrooms.
Hope this was both informative and creative for you… Enjoy! And Happy Spring!
Rosemary Augustine – Artist and Author
02-23-2013… We continue to have interesting combinations with numbers even with 13 as a number for the year. But, what’s really in a number? Time comes to my mind. We all have the same amount of time – each day – 24 hours of time. Some of us use it wisely and others… well? You be the judge of your time. The time we take to make a choice in how we use our time can be a split second or deliberated for hours, or even days.
When I hear people say, “I just don’t have time to _______________,” (you fill in the blank). What it really comes down to is your time is important. How you spend your time is equally important. And the choices you make in how you spend your time makes the decision when you say you don’t have time to do something that may or may not have meaning for you.
So, take some time and think about how you spend your time. Keep a log for a day or even a week, tracking how you spend your time. You may be surprised at how you enjoy your time or how much time you waste. Here are a few statements around “time” that you may want to journal on to find more time for the things that give you meaning in your life:
· What are your top 3 “values” in life? Values like family, friendship, security, lifestyle, independence… etc. These are just a few. Choose your own, add to the list, but ponder in your morning pages what values are most important to you. Consider these values when spending your time.
· What is least important to you? When you start addressing your values, you may find a few things that really don’t matter or are least important. How much time do you spend on these things? You may also want to consider why you spend time thinking about things that really don’t matter or are not important to you.
· In your busy day… take a minute to notice your surroundings. Now take a few more minutes to really observe your surroundings and notice three things you have never noticed before. Write about what you are seeing for the first time. What feelings does this evoke for you?
So … time! … some of us have more time than others – or at least it appears that way. Since we all get the same amount of time everyday, how do you spend your time? Something to journal about today, or the next time you spend time writing in your journal.
Make it a Great Day regardless of how you spend your time!
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A New Year’s Resolution That Works? That’s right! A New Year’s Resolution that really works! “How,” you ask? Because most New Year’s Resolutions are too general, often extremely vague and have no time frame to complete or achieve, that’s usually why most people drop off before January is even over. How many times have you heard someone say: “my New Year’s resolution is to lose weight!” Pretty general and without a specific plan to do so, you are doomed before you start. To make changes in your life, often the picture is much bigger to anticipate and usually more than just yourself is involved. So, asking for help, along with getting focused and staying on track with a career coach ensures success of your desired goals.
Whether you are self employed or work for someone else, your work is your career! Since 1991, I have helped thousands as their career coach to find their passion, change their life so their work fits their values and brushed up quite a few resumes (I’ve lost count on the number of resumes). Your life is part of your career and coaching you along your journey goes hand and hand with your life and career. My coaching programs offer my personal coaching system along with using several books – my books as well as The Artist’s Way as additional assignments. Your vision statement and your vision journal play a role in coaching your life as well. And, if you are a business owner, your life and career are affected by your marketing efforts including your web presence, social media, bio/resume, networking, advertising and more. So you see, working with a career coach is not about changing jobs, it’s more about having a life – the life you really want! I help you get focused; stay on track and achieve your goals whatever they may be.
As your career coach, I’m your cheerleader and confidant, and in the end maybe a friend. I’ll provoke thought and support you during changes. I inspire you to reach for your dreams – and achieve them. You’ll work hard to achieve your goals, and when it’s time for us to part, you will say how hard you worked and that it was worth every minute.
As my client, there is a request for a commitment to work together with the amount of time we spend together relative to your desired results. If you truly desire something different in your life, and you’re willing to commit to what is necessary to achieve those goals, then it’s time to hire Rosemary Augustine as your Career Coach. I have worked with individuals from all walks of life and who live anywhere within the United States.
As my client, you will optimize life skills, maximize your potential, recognize false beliefs, identify obstacles, see patterns, break through fear and maybe even recognize a few trends. Most importantly, you will learn how to accessorize change and grow – personally, professionally and spiritually.
So as we ring in 2013, make your New Year’s Resolution a commitment to work with a Career Coach. Give yourself the gift to play more and work less; find your passion, live your dream, make a difference. It’s your career… change and shape your future, otherwise this is as good as it gets!
I offer several types of coaching programs designed to fit an individual’s specific needs and budget. Give me a call (or visit my website) and let’s talk about your particular situation regarding what you want to change and/or achieve in 2013… I would be thrilled to travel with you on your journey to accomplish it. I look forward to hearing from you soon.
Warmest Regards and Happy New Year!
Rosemary Augustine – Author and Career Coach
When you learn a friend is diagnosed with Breast Cancer just before Christmas, all kinds of things go through your head… getting a mammogram is one of them. Yet, it appears your friend did all the right things… she eats healthy; exercises; always in a good frame of mind; is active and healthier than most. While you may be all worried, your friend may not. She feels she’s in good hands with the best doctors, along with working on staying healthy, exercising, and releasing deep rooted anger and resentments that she probably doesn’t want to share with you.
How do you support someone like your friend during such a stressful and for some life-threatening time? Here are some ideas, maybe you can add to it.
*Your friend wants love and support at this time. Be a friend, don’t be her mother. Let your friend come forth with answers to questions you may want to ask. Be open to just being with her – some call it “being in the moment.”
*No Drama Please. Now is not the time to call her with your drama. Save that for someone else.
*No Lectures either… she probably gets that from her family and if she can muster the emotional strength, she will limit that discussion with anyone and everyone.
*Consider gentle suggestions like “hey the other day I was reading about …. you think that might help at any point?” rather than saying “well if I were you, I would do…”
*A phone call is always welcome… however, be in the moment when you call. Give her your full attention. Be focused on the call and on your friend. Listen to her and what she is saying, don’t ask so many questions that you want answers to, simply because she may not have the answers right now.
*When calling, remember you are probably one caller of about 20 that she may have already gotten today. Be gentle, comforting, and be calming with your voice.
*It is most important when you call to NOT be driving or on your way somewhere and then get caught in the phrase “I thought I would call for a minute while I’m driving… oh shit the traffic is awful… let me call you back.”
*Send an email, card or letter… and include an article of interest (but not about her cancer); send something that would make her laugh, a joke or comic strip; even a quote or thought for the day.
*Show concern in a loving way but please release your fears around her condition. Yes she has breast cancer and Yes she feels strongly she will live and come through this a better person – cancer free.
*And Yes, she has probably come to terms with the fear of dying and knows she will one day, but not this way. So it is important NOT to hear Fear in YOUR voice since that fear is often your own fear of death. Funny how these things reflect back to us.
*Be gentle with your friend, make sure you’re not asking questions where she has to constantly justify why she is doing something her way and not your way.
*Know that she is comfortable – sometimes even being alone. Also know she will reach out when she wants help or just wants to hear your voice.
*Lastly, when you offer to help, offer what you are willing to help with. Her neighbor said recently, “I can drive you to the doctor if you want me to.”
Your friend is probably overwhelmed right now with the scheduling of appointments prior to surgery and post surgery schedules of more appointments and radiation five days a weeks for six weeks or more. Offer to make lunch or dinner at her place or bring her the kind of food She eats; shop for her; go for a walk with her; bring her a magazine or read her a special quote you found.
Most importantly, tell her you love her – Every Time – and how together we are going to get through this with flying colors… then make plans to do so.
Somehow, this is a Christmas Gift that eventually will truly be a Gift!
It’s been a scattered day after all the destruction of Hurricane Sandy. Yes, damn it! I’m still going to call her a hurricane! All that energy stirring up for days. All that energy supposedly balancing the poles, but I’m not sure which pole they are referring to – north, south, or telephone pole. What must we all be thinking to manifest such destruction?
So now, after the hurricane, it’s time to do some writing… journal writing. Regardless of whether you write daily like me, or occasionally, journal on these words today. My suggested journal prompts:
Reflection - today I reflect on all the good in my life.
Gratitude – what are you grateful for in your life today?
Forgiveness – describe how forgiveness would benefit you right now.
Start today, and journal on these words. In your journal, use a page for each prompt, or write a paragraph for each prompt. Free write on these prompts for at least 5 minutes each. See where journaling on these words take you for the moment. Don’t alter your writing just let it flow – freely. After the hurricane, you may be surprised that life isn’t so bad after all.
Meanwhile … Life Happens
What do you do when you are pulled in so many directions and your dreams get put on hold? Well…. You really shouldn’t put your dreams on hold – for any reason! However, they may be delayed for a day or two. Here are a few tips to recognize the crisis, the drama and the putting yourself aside for others.
1 – Take 5 minutes several times during the day for self check in. Whether you do a mental, physical or emotional check in, check in often. Make the necessary adjustments – each time.
2 – Journal each morning for 15-20 minutes to get your day organized, your thoughts straight and go deep into your subconscious to bring up the gems that need to surface.
3 – Take a Walk. Whether it’s 10-20-or 40 or more minutes, take a walk – it helps relieve stress and surprisingly inspires creativity.
4 – Meditate. Walking can be meditation and so can sitting quietly and deep breathing, or being aware of your breath. Focus on something other than the crisis going on around you -i.e.: focus on your breath.
5 – Do Something for You! If you are dealing with your own crisis or someone else’s, do something nice for yourself. I was having a crisis filled day, and while I was waiting for prescriptions to be filled, I purchased colored gel pens to use in my journal, knowing the colored gel pens would go well beyond the crisis of the moment.
6 – Eat Well! There is nothing worse than being in a crisis and eating poorly. Stay away from sugar, starchy carbs, alcohol, drugs and caffeine. Now is a good time to have a Salmon Caesar Salad and herbal iced tea.
7 – Take a Nap! A 15 – 20 minute power nap can work wonders while you don’t get the full 8 hours during a crisis.
8. – Be in the moment! As much as you may be in pain – physical or emotional, be one with it. Being in the moment can teach many lessons and we have to listen and listening starts with being in the moment.
9 – Let Go! Often our stress, pain and crisis is a product of us holding on – to the outcome … controlling the circumstances not listening to the Universe’s call to be in the moment. Let go and let your higher power take you. You may be surprised that remarkably much of the world and days events outside of your own self is out of your control. You can, however, control your reaction.
10 – This too shall pass. Whether you are facing family crisis or your own surgery, a big test, presentation or getting married, check your fears. Talk to your God and know everything will be alright – as long as you believe it. Our mind is a powerful tool. If you let your fear and worry control your will, it goes without saying you draw attention to that which you pay attention to. However you use your mind, It will yield results because of your focus.
Always remember to enjoy the journey.
What’s in the number? 10-11-12? Add each number up and you get 1-2-3!
Today is the day for launching new ideas, new directions, and maybe even a portal into which we can travel to the next dimension. This is the year of numbers… we had: 2-12-12; 3-6-12 (3 times 2 = 6 and 6 times 2 = 12); 10-11-12; 12-12-12; 12-21-12 – the end of the Mayan Calendar. Last year we had 1-11-11 and 11-11-11. These dates are portals – I use the word “portal” out of context simply meaning a day of awareness of greater things in your life. A portal to rise up to – open up / go deeper into – a higher level of consciousness; a chance to grow spiritually; an opportunity to emotionally connect mind body spirit as one. There will be other dates but this is the year for numbers and definitely the year for the greatest change. Your awareness will deepen as a result.
Writers Write and Journal
At a local writers group last night, I met some wonderful people, heard a great speaker, and had a good meal. However, I came away with a gnawing feeling since I had gone to this group many times before. Here I was proudly announcing my new book to a group of people who could really use it.
My observation started with the introductions, around a large room with a continuous U-shaped table of about 35 people: I’m Sally – Fiction; Joe – Mysteries; Pete- Horror; Kathy- Memoirs and on around the table. All ages, all various “daytime” occupations and nighttime dreams of being a writer. The key words here are “dreams of being a writer” and the occupation of writer just happens to fill in the blank on this discussion.
As I read about writing greats like Michener and Hemmingway, those writers wrote – daily. Julia Cameron continues to write daily. If you are a writer, you write. If you are an artist, you paint, and if you are a _________ you ________ - you fill in the blanks. This piece addresses the value of writing, and most importantly, the value of journaling for anyone – especially for writers.
When I hear that work is crazy, my life is on overload, and I just don’t have time to write – sure you don’t, because you are all consumed by something that is taking you away from something that is far more meaningful to you. For many, the distractions of overload dampen your passion and creative spirit. Who would have energy or time to write creative pieces when you’re being beat up emotionally during the day with stress, work and family?
If you ever used the book, The Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron, you are familiar with Morning Pages. If not, my suggestion is similar. She suggests 3 hand written pages every morning first thing. I suggest a minimum of 15 minutes (20 minutes maximum – use a timer if necessary) of hand written pages – before all the distractions of the day. Julia’s Morning Pages take just about 20 minutes. Hand written is the other key words in this piece, since the whole purpose of journaling in the morning is to get the garbage out and reach the real gems that ignite your creative spark and keep it lit. Hand writing vs. keyboarding your 15 minutes daily reaches a deeper level of consciousness scientifically proven not possible via a keyboard.
So if you are a writer, and you are not journaling every day, consider doing so to get that spark burning and staying lit throughout the day with additional thoughts and ideas to be captured … in your journal. Some writers view journaling as not writing at all, though I never understood that concept. Journaling offers the writer an opportunity to create more writing, generate ideas, mind map storyboards, and enhance characters. Journaling also helps the non-writer to work out solutions to problems in life and at work, polish accomplishment statements for the resume, and work on phrasing for that difficult discussion you will have later with a family member. Free writing using prompts, dialoguing with pain, journaling deep into your psyche to draw upon a creative side you didn’t know existed or knew it did and couldn’t find how to tap into it.
The only caution I have about journaling is it helps promote change. You start to peel away the layers of hurt, anger and resentment, you recognize toxic environments and toxic people in your life, and you begin to heal, grow and want more healing and growth – because you begin to see how much better life really is… all because of a simple 15 minute daily task. As a result, you start to change, you may find gossip or even TV no longer interests you. The toxic environments and toxic individuals can no longer be tolerated. By journaling you take a hard look at yourself and as a result you want to change … and you want to change things around you as well. You want more, you want a better life and you seek it out – first through journaling and then pursuing it in real life. This is where fiction writers excel with using journaling for their work with character building. Others find it valuable to journal on the things they want and how they can make that happen.
Change is inevitable…. Change is constant… change is part of growth and without it we remain stagnant, bored and constantly complain wanting others to fix us. By journaling you begin to see that you are the only one who can ‘fix’ you… journaling begins the journey to self-discovery and a more creative and fulfilling life. Happy Journaling!
Warmest Writing Regards,
Rosemary Augustine is the author of ‘365 Days of Creative Writing’ which offers daily writing prompts for all kinds of writers and those with a daily journaling practice. Her prompts have helped many see the change they want and have helped many writers break through writers block. Her book can be purchased at Amazon.com or on her website: www.RosemaryAugustine.com
Want more proof of the value of journaling? Click on the link below.
An Unexpected Dialogue with My Father
This morning while doing my morning pages, quite unexpectedly I started having a dialogue. It wasn’t planned. I was listening to Angela Falco’s music CD (http://www.angelafalco.com) and remembered what she wrote about her Dad when she was playing one of her unnamed songs for him. His response was “You wrote that song? … why don’t you name it: ‘Don’t Know Where I’m Going’.” I began to sob thinking of my Dad – gone since 1984. Wishing I could see my Dad or be with him, I wrote, “I don’t miss him that much to be with him in death, but I’d like to have a conversation with him about life, love and business.” Then I wrote “Gee it could be a book with the title “Conversations With My Father.” My next words appeared on the page quite unexpectedly:
“Gee Dad, I’m baking a cake this morning, Chocolate Devils Food. You always liked German Chocolate cake, but I loved Devils Food – all that dark richness, I could eat just the batter. When did you start liking German Chocolate Cake (since I always baked the Devils Food as a kid)?” And so the conversation started… “Remember that lunch counter we use to go to in Atlantic City on the boardwalk? I had my first piece there and loved it, and you would bake one for me from time to time. It was delicious.” And so I continued to write a few more pages with questions and dialogue with Dad, writing as fast as I could with his responses.
Dialogue journaling is nothing new. I often suggest this kind of journaling to friends and clients to use dialogue journaling as a medium for zooming in on specific issues – especially when it comes to physical pain, emotional hurt, grief, loss, anger, resentment, jealousy… and some more happier dialogues such as a job interview, discussion with a boss, spouse, love one, friend or family member. Even dialogues with your inner child are common and healthy. Therapists have used it for years. Some dialogue journaling will also include sketches of scenes to address the anger, hurt and loss, heal the hurt and pain, and eventually move on with emotional growth and a new perspective around the situation.
I’m not a therapist, nor is my background in psychology (my college days were spent learning business). But I do recommend dialogue journaling and allowing yourself the time to feel the pain and hurt, and wash it away with tears of sorrow and eventually joy. If you are in therapy, work with your therapist on this as well.
I can’t promise I’ll finish my book “Conversations With My Father” anytime soon, since I just came out with 365 Days of Creative Writing – journaling prompts for every day of the year… but I do know with journaling every morning I can have a conversation with my Dad and build my book that maybe one day I will publish. In the meantime, it’s healing me to know that Dad was a huge influence in my life as an entrepreneur. His passion for music was undeniable, and his creativity and artistic expression was certainly passed down to me (well really all 3 of us). Two of my books have dedications to his teaching me perseverance, independence and self-discipline.
Meanwhile, I’ll continue my morning pages, journaling each day for 15-20 minutes and know that all of you are inspired to do the same. Regardless of whether you decide to dialogue, writing every morning has brought me many blog postings, newsletters, and book chapters out of that simple 20 minutes of journaling. Imagine what 20 minutes of journaling can do for your life? The possibilities are endless.
Make it a Great Day and I hope you write something in your journal today.
Love and Hugs
How To Dialogue Journal: When I started my conversation with my Dad, I asked some simple questions, I continued to write and listened for an inner voice. The responses came through that inner voice and my hand, making me write as fast as I could. I titled the top of the page “Conversations With My Father” so I could later find it among the hand written pages and transcribe it onto the computer.
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