Friday, May 30, 2014

Some mint lemonade?

I love lemons. I make lemon ginger health shots and drink lemon water all of the time. I recently bought some mint leaves because I wanted to recreate a healthy "milk" shake I had had at one of my favorite restaurants. So...the mint leaves were there and voila! The idea of combining mint and lemon was born. 

Of course, I am not the first to think of this by a long stretch. But, I needed something to remind me of it and now I am reminding you: lemon and mint together is delicious! Plus mint and lemon both offer vitamins and minerals that are good for us. And, now that it is getting warmer out, refreshing beverages are extra lovely. I used Bobby Flay's recipe to get me started, but altered it a bit. If you like more exact measurements, use his!

Throw it all in a blender:

1.  One whole peeled lemon (cut it in half, then cut the skin off, then pull out the seeds with your knife). Using the whole lemon would seem to allow for the maximum health benefits from this fruit. Why not use the whole thing?
2.  Less than 1/4 cup of simple syrup (boil one part sugar and one part water until sugar dissolves and then let cool or add ice), or just use some stevia (or any other natural sweetener you prefer)
3.  About 4 fresh mint leaves (health benefits of mint)
4.  Dash of stevia
5.  4 ice cubes
6.  Around 1 cup of water

Blend, adjust to taste, and then pour over ice! This yields two servings of tangy deliciousness. As a bonus, it's a beautiful color. Enjoy!

Carly Massey is an artist and spirit seeker who loves to connect and create. To learn more about who she is and what she does, visit and Love to you.

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

A meditation for self-love

If you are finding that you need communion with your inner being, with that part of you that is pure bright light, or you are feeling a little lost or unloved, or just want to embrace your joy, here's a meditative, self-affirming practice I LOVE: 

Have access to the song below, Kim Taylor's "Save My Life." Turn the volume very loud. Sit in easy pose (legs crossed, comfortably). If you can, light a candle and sit in front of a mirror. Place one hand on your knee, and one gently over your beating heart, or both hands over your heart. Take deep breaths as you look yourself in the eyes. Look into your beautiful eyes. Do you see yourself? Do you see your beautiful soul? The real, eternal you? Turn on the song. Close your eyes, and listen to the words and hear them in your mind as though they are your inner being speaking to yourself. Say them to yourself in your mind along with the song. Keep breathing deeply. The words are the real you, the love and light within you, the source that wants all things good for you, the source that knows that you are perfect just as you are. Let yourself feel whatever comes up, and allow yourself to feel the love for yourself that is your birthright. When the song ends, put it on repeat if you wish, and when you are ready, open your eyes and say, "I love you. I am safe. I am loved, and I'm going to love you the way you are meant to be loved." xox 

Carly Massey is a creative specialist and SPIRIT SEEKER based in Los Angeles. She loves to create & connect. Find out more about what she does at or follow her on social media at Love to you.

Saturday, January 25, 2014

Am I beautiful? Am I worthy?

Today, I was working on the last page of my new website - the "About Me" page. I had to choose two photos of myself. I wanted them to show who I am. I wanted them to express that deep inside I have compassion, heart, and am able to show up with love. I also wanted to demonstrate that I am creative, fun, joyful, honest, effective, and highly professional. I went back into the folder of head shots that the talented Kyria Lydia Abrahams took for me back in 2011.

By default, I scrolled down the hundreds of images searching for the same ten that I have used repeatedly over the years. The same group that I mentally "approved" of. In fact, the only group I felt was reasonable - at all - to show to anyone else. In my mind, these were the pictures that thinned me out, where my face was not too full, and where I looked, in my perception, "good enough."

I didn't show the rest to anyone else, and even asked Kyria to take photos that I didn't think were beautiful enough off of her website.

The experience I proceeded to have forced me to sit down, right away, even though I have a million other things to get done today, and write this article. I needed to write it in honor of my quickly growing nieces and nephews. In honor of my friends. In honor of anyone who has ever felt this way.

I realized that my vision had been askew. How had I not seen all of these other photographs?

I am not talking about vision of the ocular variety, but my spiritual vision. Vision of my essence. Vision of the truth.

I am smiling. I am curvy. I am glowing. I am laughing. I am bright. I am beautiful. How did I miss all that?

Of course, I have had this experience before. The one where looking back you see so much that you could not see before. In more ways than just physically. But, in keeping with the physical nature of this experience, I will offer one other example - my freshman year of high school. I'm sure most of us remember our freshman year of high school. The excitement, or the fear, but of course the hope that it would go well.

I walked into this huge new place, with all of these new people. I looked at the girls around me. To me, they seemed so....I don't know the right words, but I could say - fashionable, pretty, cool, things seemed easy for them, they could talk to each other and the boys. But, the word that is the truth, that I wasn't able to find, is that they seemed worthy

Worthy of what? 

Love. Good things. Joy. Acceptance. General, Universal, divine-right love.

How could I compare? I didn't measure up. Why couldn't I diet hard enough? Why did I have a belly like that? Why did my face look like that? Why were my breasts that way? Why did I have stupid braces? Why did I say stupid things? Why didn't people like me? Why was my smile so awkward? Why? Why? WHY?!

Why was I not good enough? And, how could I become good enough? For a while, it was easiest for me to think that I might be able to become good enough by focusing on my appearance. The "if onlys" began. "If only I were thinner." "If only I looked like that...then everything would be better." Or, in other words, then I would be worthy, valuable, beautiful... and happy.

Homecoming was quickly approaching. I wished that I looked better in my dress. I wished I could fit into a tight dress, like the ones I knew other girls were wearing. I wished I was a size 4 or 6. I felt so self-conscious, so out of place. I tried so hard... so... hard. I got my hair done. I got fake nails. I bleached hair on my face and burnt my skin off. I spent money. I dieted. Oh, how I dieted. I plucked. I sucked my stomach in. I abused my body repeatedly. I took classes in makeup and how to stand like a model. I tried to become what I thought I should be.

I had just turned 13 years old the month before.

Here is that little, young, lost girl the night of her first high school dance.

Okay...Isn't she flipping gorgeous?! Can't you see past all that makeup, that pose, that fake smile into her heart? To her essence? Can't you see how amazingly beautiful and pure her essence is? I couldn't see any of that, at all.

It didn't matter that I had a new boyfriend, my first boyfriend, who surprised me at the dance with a white rose and told me I was so beautiful. It didn't matter that he said he loved me. It didn't matter that my parents told me I was pretty and wanted to take lots of pictures. It didn't matter. I was sure I was unattractive. But, now I know what I meant. With all of that misplaced focus on everything on the outside, what I really meant was that I was sure that I was overall deeply defective; that I was broken.

I can only wonder how many other beautiful souls - child or adult - feel unworthy? Like me, you are not. Never have been. Never will be.

Today, I think about that little girl who stayed small for so long, and release tears of gratitude that I am not that little girl anymore but that I recognize the inherent beauty inside of me and can use all I have learned to see it so clearly in others. I realize that I am just now able to see the magnitude of my own inherent worth. From that place, I see beauty and light shining out of my eyes.

Sure, three years ago, I found ten pictures in that folder of hundreds where I thought I looked beautiful, but what about all of the rest? I can see them more clearly now. I accept this process as part of my awakening. It's a journey, but I'm on it. I see so much beauty, Everywhere. All shapes, all sizes, all abilities, all colors, the wind, the ocean, the grass, the roads, technology, a hug, a word, vulnerability, a spirit. I am overcome with the beauty of the essence of everything. Daily, I look up at the sky and thank the Universe for this vision and its growing clarity.

I will continue to see it and embrace it more in myself and in the world. I hope that you all can see yourselves the way I do - beautiful, extraordinary, glowing, full of spirit, lovable, and absolutely, unconditionally worthy of the very best things in life - the joy that is rightfully yours.

Here are some of those omitted photographs. Thank you, Kyria, for capturing my true beauty and worth that is always there - my essence.

Carly Massey is a creative specialist and spirit seeker based in Los Angeles. She loves to create & connect. Find out more about what she does at or follow her on social media at Love to you.

Friday, January 17, 2014

Open your heart & project love, a meditation

Jai Jag-deesh sings Aad Guray Nameh. I often sit, in easy pose, with my palms resting face up on my knees, close my eyes, breathe into my heart and let the chant move through me. When emotion comes up, I focus on letting the light fill my heart, and the emotion come out. Blessings to you.

Carly Massey is an artist and spirit seeker who loves to connect and create. To learn more about who she is and what she does, visit and Love to you.

Saturday, November 9, 2013

Friday, November 8, 2013

'Tis the season for pumpkin dessert smoothies

I love experimenting with my culinary creations. Now that Thanksgiving is around the corner and pumpkin everything is popping up all over the place, I went ahead and bought a can of organic pumpkin, not sure of exactly how I wanted to use it but knowing I was craving that seasonal taste. Tonight, I developed a very simple, yummy dessert smoothie that is also healthy, as pumpkin is a nutrient dense food. Also, I think it would be a great option for parents who want to sneak some nutrients into their child's treats. In which case, why not call it a pumpkin milkshake? Try it out, and let me know what you think!

Add to a blender:

1.  3/4 cup of canned pumpkin
2.  1/4 cup of vanilla soy ice cream
3.  3/4 packet stevia (Please only use stevia or a natural sweetener. Artificial sweeteners are very dangerous to consume.)
4.  Original almond milk
5.  Two ice cubes
6.  Blend and enjoy!

Health benefits: This smoothie is a delicious treat, while also vegan and full of nutrients. Almond milk is high in calcium, nondairy, and vitamin-rich. And what about pumpkin? It's a total superfood! 3/4 a cup of canned pumpkin contains only 60 calories, less than 1g of fat, 15g of carbohydrate, and 5.25g of fiber. Fiber is a nice bonus, as traditional desserts are not usually high in fiber. It also provides 570 percent of the daily value of Vitamin A, along with a decent dose of vitamin C, calcium, iron, and potassium. But, let me repeat that: 3/4 a cup of pumpkin contains 570 percent of the daily value of Vitamin A! Vitamin A acts as an antioxidant, infection fighter, and immunity booster. It also fights against cancer and heart disease, helps your eyes in multiple ways, is great for your skin, and helps your body build proteins. Basically, it is awesome. If you aren't sold, check out this fun and informative video about pumpkins!

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Friday, October 4, 2013

After seven years, I decided to leave teaching

Last June, at the end of the school year, I decided to resign from education. When I began telling people that I was leaving teaching after seven years to pursue something new, I got a myriad of responses. Some were supportive. A bunch were surprised or impressed. And, many went like this: What about your growing pension? Are you SURE? The job market is tough out there. There are no jobs! You make a decent salary; do you really want to give that up? Can't you just do whatever else you want to do on the side? But you are good at what you do!

I felt awe-struck by the majority's subtle insistence on taking the safer option and simultaneously realized why they call following your heart the "road less traveled." Society trains us to think that we must grapple and struggle for security, and once obtained, that we should hold onto it for dear life! After all, the "unknown" could turn into something uncomfortable! I guess it seems to some that it is better to be safe and feel as though there is more assurance that we will survive than it is to risk it all in order to THRIVE. But, I wonder, what is it exactly that we would be risking? 

In the previous paragraph, I said "survive." Is that really what we are afraid of - that we won't survive? When I examine this more closely, I think the truth is that being "comfortable" is what's at stake, rather than survival. So, again, what is it that I would really be risking? Well, I could fail. This is true. And, what does that look like? Worst case scenario - I would default on my bills, be unable to afford a place to live, and not have money to buy food. I could, potentially, end up on the street with bad credit. Hmmm. I decided I could live with that. It would be a much better alternative, in my opinion, than waking up years from now and wondering, "Why didn't I follow that calling deep inside? Why didn't I see that the Universe gave me that calling for a reason? Why didn't I take a chance? Why didn't I live my life?" 

While we are all trying to secure our tomorrows and be comfortable, who then, I ask, is securing our todays? Don't you want your life to be an adventure? Don't you want to live as much as you possibly can? Don't you want to realize your full potential? Don't you want to know the deep joy that comes from fulfilling your dreams? The future is just some concept out there that, let's face it, never turns out the way we thought it would anyway! Will I really, really end up on the street, starving? Probably not. So, why, I ask, would I stake my "now" for something that might happen "then"? 

I chose not to.

I always told my students, "Follow your dreams. You can do anything your heart desires. Don't live small. Don't hide your light." And I meant it. What kind of educator would I be if I didn't lead by example? If I were a hypocrite of my own credo? That's not the kind of educator I wanted to be. That's not the kind of life I wanted to live - one with an ember burning inside that I ignored. If I can do it, then they can too, and so can you.

"Go confidently in the direction of your dreams. Live the life you have imagined." (HDT) 

Monday, August 12, 2013

Green smoothie love

I tend to drink a lot of smoothies for breakfast when summertime comes around. They are super easy to make, and a super great way to pack in a lot of different nutrients that you might not otherwise be able to get in your morning meal. For example, how many of us could easily incorporate kale and spirulina into our breakfast routine? Check out my latest favorite smoothie recipe below for a yummy breakfast treat.

Add to a blender:

1.  Kale (avoid the stems)
2.  Half an avocado
3.  Cold almond milk (or your favorite dairy alternative - flax, hemp, coconut, etc.)
4.  Dash of spirulina powder
5.  Fruit, frozen if possible (Banana, blueberries, watermelon are all good options that I've tried in this recipe. If the fruit is not frozen, add an ice cube to the blender.)
6.  Heaping spoonful of peanut or almond butter
7.  Dash of stevia (Please only use stevia or a natural sweetener. Artificial sweeteners are very dangerous to consume.)
8.  Blend. If not mixing properly, add a little more almond milk. Taste and add more stevia as needed, but be careful - a little stevia goes a long way.
9.  Enjoy!

Health benefits: This smoothie is a perfect balance of healthy fat, fiber, carbs, protein, and nutrients. Almond milk is high in calcium, non-dairy, and vitamin-rich. Spirulina is full of protein, iron, vitamin A, and other nutrients. It improves digestion, fights free radicals, and more. (I use Earthrise Spirulina Natural powder.) Kale is a wonder plant. No joke. Check out my blog post "Incredible, wondrous kale" to learn more about the benefits of this leafy gem. Avocados are good for your heart, high in fiber, have anti-inflammatory properties, are high in phytonutrients, and so on, ad infinitum. Yes, they contain fat, but it is AMAZING fat that is super duper good for you. Trust me, eat them. Finally, depending upon what fruit you choose, it will have various vitamins and nutrients that it provides you. As always, try to buy organic fruits and veggies. Avocados and bananas have thick peels, and so are slightly less damaging bought non-organic (I don't buy them organic), but no pesticides always equals healthier people.

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

You can't help but smile

Here is a little sunshine to brighten your day. This little girl is so excited to ride a train for her birthday!