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Happy Valentine's Day to You and Your Inner Child

SoPomegranate Smoothieon, there will be a lot of fanfare around the biggest chocolate holiday of the year, right?  Or is Halloween the biggest candy holiday?  Maybe Easter? I know that Valentine’s Day didn’t start out being about flowers or candy but somehow it has evolved. (Or dissolved?) Did you know that $146.84 is the average amount Americans will spend on flowers, candy, apparel, jewelry and other gifts on Valentine’s Day?  That’s up from $142.31 last year.  That comes to a total of $19.7 billion that will be spent on Valentine’s Day gifts. And, get this, $1.7 billion is the amount that will be spent on candy alone!

Well, I could write a blog about the fact that we are a nation of sugar addicts, or try to convince you to skip all of the above and have a relaxing massage at the center, but instead I am going to share with you our time-tested favorite raw chocolate smoothie recipes, heart healthy smoothie recipes and my personal favorite raw chocolate pudding treats.  I promise you, I can convert you from that waxy, additive laden candy bar or those stale synthetic candies hiding in those beautiful red heart shaped boxes at the drug store if you will just give these recipes a chance. Once you start making the switch to eating whole foods, your palate will be so happy with these delicious alternative chocolate recipes that you will be telling all your friends.  Better yet, don’t wait, try them now and you may be very surprised at how tasty they are without the crash, cranky mood, headaches, bloating or cravings you get from the other stuff. One of my favorite things that I never get tired of hearing is when someone tells me their kids love my Chocolate Peanut Butter Smoothie!  You will too.

If, however, you are less interested in the chocolate and flowers and more frustrated that no one is sending them to you, then take heart:  the first, most important love is the love you give yourself.  Whether you are single or married, happy or not in your relationship, longing for true (mature) love or vaguely remembering the romantic stage of your current or last relationship; the gifts of self -love and self-care are incredibly life changing.

Inner Child QuoteSelf-love should not be confused with self-centeredness or narcissism; it is rather the ability to hold yourself in high regard with compassion, respect and dignity for the person you are today and the journey that got you here.  While it may seem to some impossible to love themselves, all journeys begin with a baby step.  Three helpful tips for learning to love yourself; first, make the bold decision to do so, next act as if you love yourself by engaging in loving behaviors toward yourself and third embrace the inner child still living within and nurture her/him as if they were your own; because they are.

For more help, read 21 Tips to Release Self Neglect and also my list of Deb’s 50 ways to love yourself.  Self-love, and my Chocolate Lover Recipes Feb 2016 can go a long way this Valentine’s Day or any day. . . though I must say, a massage is still a wonderful way to self-care.  Happy Valentine’s Day to You and your Inner Child!

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