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Help Support This Healing Initiative October 4, 2010


Stories of suicide, addiction and depression are frequent in mainstream media. Unfortunately, these stories rarely discuss anything beyond the suicide method or a claim that the person is now in “treatment.” This tiptoeing around tough topics and shallow coverage (which is often judgmental) only perpetuates the stigmas. It’s time we broke free from this cycle.

This film (see the trailer below) is part of a dynamic healing initiative that seeks to open the discussion about depression and suicide and explore opportunities for true healing. I ask that you help me create this necessary initiative.

Your financial support will help to finish production of the film (e.g. editing), create the website and social media initiatives and outline a curriculum that can be integrated into college health courses and medical schools.

There are two ways to donate:  1) Use the handy tool above and pay securely through PayPal. Just select the amount you would like to donate and then click “Give.”  or  2) If you would prefer to send a check, please email me and I will give you all the info that you need.

As an important contributor to the completion of this project, you will receive:

  • $5 – $25: Online recognition on “Contributors” page (listed in order of donation amount). Selected name on the “In Honor Of” board (optional– this is an online page honoring those who have passed from suicide- listed in alphabetical order)*.
  • $30 – $200: All of above + DVD of the film*
  • $250 – $750: All of above + Thank you credit in film (your name appears in this credit).
  • $1,000 – $2,000:  All of above + “In Honor of” credit at begining of film (credit honoring an individual of your choosing who has passed from suicide)

* Please note that I will be contacting you for all necessary info (confirm your name– and if you want it placed on the “Contributors” page, your address to send DVD, name for “In Honor Of,” etc.) via your email used for PayPal. After 3 unsuccessful attempts at contacting you, I will just place your name on the relevant page/credit.

I am also in search of two Executive Producers for the film. Please email me if you are interested and/or have questions about this opportunity (aimee@wellnessgossip.com).

Other ways to help: Pass this page to your contacts, Tweet this page, Post to Facebook, Click the “Add to site” link on the donation tool above to embed on your own blog or website… Other ideas?? Email me and let’s discuss 🙂

And yes, please keep sending in your titles for the film. Whoever provides the selected title will receive a credit in the film!

I will be updating you all as we progress. The goal is to pitch the film in mid-February 2011 and hit the festivals in early summer 2011. Online initiatives will likely begin in May 2011.

I cannot express to you how much your support means to me– even if happy thoughts and emails are all you can offer at this time. Truly, the amazing emails that I have received have kept me motivated to bring this initiative to completion. And we’re almost there!!!

Much love and gratitude,



Dalai Lama Lecture Tonight: “What Life Is All About” August 8, 2010

The lectures are happening in Delhi, so the times are a bit odd for us:

Start time of the first lecture is Sunday, August 8 at 11:00 PM CST. Watch the lecture live.

There will be another lecture on “Ethics for the New Millennium” Tuesday, August 10th at 3:30 AM CST.

OK, there’s no way I’ll be awake to watch any of those! Lectures will likely be posted soon at the website.


Naturally Nutty & Yen Yoga in Michigan July 26, 2010

Filed under: My favorite things!,Physical Wellness — aprasek @ 6:28 pm

So, I just returned from a VK in Michigan. And it was surprisingly fabulous! I guess I never thought of Michigan as a must-see destination. I was wrong.

Tourist highlights:  All the lakes (including the obvious– Lake Michigan), amazing sunsets, sand dunes (undoubtedly made to throw yourself down in a series of cartwheels and somersaults), little islands to kayak to and picnic on, all sorts of wildlife to watch (that includes people watching), cherry orchards (to pick and eat your way through) and tacky touristy things (my personal fave= extreme mini golf courses).

We mainly ran around Traverse City and Elk Rapids. But we also stopped in Charlevoix, Mackinaw, and some random little towns along our roadtrip route.

Here are a few of my favorite things I discovered:

Naturally Nutty:

OMG. Seriously, this stuff is amazing. The flavor I got is a mix of organic pumpkin, flax, sunflower and hemp seeds all spiced with vanilla, allspice, cinnamon and a bit of salt. Hello healthy pumpkin pie! So good on a nice piece of sprouted toast or with a banana or apple slices. I paid $10.49 for my 15 oz jar– not too bad for an organic, delicious nut butter. And with such pronounced flavor, I used about 1/2 the amount of spread on my toast.

Visit the nutty store to order online (prices are a bit cheaper than I paid). If you spend over $80, you get free shipping… that would be a heckuva lot of nut butter…

Let me know if you try any other flavors… I’m trying to get my $80 order planned out 🙂

Yen Yoga:

This was the yoga studio I stumbled into while shopping in Traverse City. It’s a posh looking joint, so I felt a bit out of place in my recycled yoga clothes (literally practiced twice in them without washing– I was roughing it, so whatever). New students receive their first class free, so I was able to snag the 90 minute Vinyasa Flow class and save my money for some divine sorbetto after class (at American Spoon).

The instructor, Jenny Lintvedt was fantastic. She had a great intuitive style to her teaching and was able to handle a huge diversity of skill levels that night.

Yen Yoga also has a bunch of other classes to choose from: Yoga with weights; Kids, Hot, Gentle and Power Yoga classes, Pilates, Spinning (they had a sweet stadium-style spin room); and Kettlebell. If you’re ever in Traverse City, I would definitely recommend stopping in for a solid workout.

That’s just the short and sweet of all the wonderful things I enjoyed on my VK to Michigan. If you have some must-see/do things to share in MI, please share!


I Have a Favor to Ask… May 17, 2010

After finishing my academic *stuff* on Wednesday, I was left with a strange void and question in my mind… “What now?!” The feeling was too much for me 🙂

So, I went back to my second home (my MAC) and stumbled across a contest for the OWN Network. I was stoked to see what the contest was for– the chance to win your own show! Having a show focused on complementary health and preventative health has always been my dream. It has been the goal that has guided me through my last 10 years of education and experiences. So, amidst my finals hangover, I applied for the show and threw together an audition video.

To my surprise, I’ve actually received some votes! But, I’ll need a lot more to move onto the second round. The five people with the most votes on July 3 will go on. So, I’ll need a group of people who are willing to vote 100+ times per day until July 3. I’m hoping our WG community can help do that 🙂

It only takes about 2 minutes to vote 100 times. People have told me that they just click on the vote button and hold down the enter key! It’s like rapid fire from then on!

If you believe in spreading the message of integrative health, then I would LOVE it if you’d vote for me and help to make this happen. Let’s create something awesome together!

Click here to watch the video and vote as much as you can.

And please send this on to your contacts and post on your social media sites!

Much love and many, many thanks guys 🙂


Looking For a New Workout Video? February 21, 2010

Filed under: Physical Wellness — aprasek @ 7:53 pm

I’m sorry, I had to post this. I have no words…


Let’s Move Campaign February 16, 2010

Filed under: Nutritional Wellness,Physical Wellness — aprasek @ 11:01 pm

I’m lovin Michelle Obama’s new initiative to improve the health of our kids:


Yesterday, I had a conversation with a friend about the cutting of music, art and physical education in schools. We started to talk about what we remembered in grades K-12… I remember paper-macheing my face in 1st grade to make a mask that we later painted and bedazzled– and I’ll never forget the poor kid who forgot to put the vaseline on his face before the paper mache–  that stuff seriously dries like concrete. I also remember playing TV tag in gym class, having jump rope contests, running around crazy in recess… I remember playing a recorder and a ukulele in music class. I can’t say that I remember anything about my geometry or calc classes… physics was a blur… I hated civics and social studies during those years… typing class was a complete joke…

The impersonal, sedentary, emotionally-devoid style of education we are pressing on our children is likely sucking away much of their later passion for learning. This stage of life should be an opportunity to enliven and enrich the many ways of knowing, begin healthy lifestyle behaviors, develop a passion for learning and an ability to think diversely and compassionately about our life on this earth.

Sorry, that was a tangent. What I love most about this campaign is its focus on attending to the real issues that are contributing to childhood obesity. This isn’t some lame “Exercise More!” campaign. Part of the mission of the campaign is to actually improve the quality of food served in schools, create more opportunities for physical activity in schools and to make healthy foods more accessible and affordable to families. Right on.

Check out the campaign website for more info.

I’m curious to know… what classroom experiences do you remember best from your K-12 days?


This Sh.. is Bananas. February 4, 2010

There’s a new documentary about bananas. Well, more like conspiracy-deadly-fraudulent bananas. Here’s the quick summary:

“In the film BANANAS!*, twelve Nicaraguan banana plantation workers are suing Dole for concealing the dangers of a pesticide that they claim made them sterile.”

Check out the trailer for the film:


The chemical pesticide used on the bananas is Nemagon. There are valid concerns that this pesticide may cause reproductive issues and increase cancer rates. The film’s website also writes:

“Even as early as 1961, an internal Shell report recommended using impermeable protective clothing to prevent contact with the skin, because the product could have undesirable consequences for human reproduction.”

Obviously, Dole said the whole lawsuit was bananas. AND THEN, the attorneys for the plantation workers and other plaintiffs were charged with fraud. Watch Dole’s response video to all of this:

If you have time, also check out “The Facts” section from the film’s website and “The Timeline” to learn more of the sordid details.

I wouldn’t be surprised if Dole was being “loose” with the use of the pesticide. I mean really, we see this with TONS of other chemical and food companies. Unfortunately, the fraud charges are making the truth pretty impossible to reveal.

What do you think? Is Dole in the wrong? Could they have influenced the fraud charges? Or, are the plantation workers trying to take advantage of Dole (and wouldn’t that be horrible since I’m sure Dole has paid and treated them so well throughout the years)?