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When you struggle with depression doing simple task’s like getting out of bed in the morning, nourishing your body with healthy foods and keeping your room clean can be some of the most difficult things to accomplish.

Once I started paying more attention to myself I noticed a pattern that despite how hard I tried and how much I gave myself talks it would still happen – I am currently here.

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I did it…

I finally followed through with caring for my mental health on a Professional level.

If I want to be of service for others that are going or will go through my same situations, why not care for myself so that I can do the same for them. I can not and will never expect anyone to do something I myself wouldn’t do.

When I am having good days, I question why did I even make that initial appointment or think that I may need help. But, when I am having bad days it’s like the help can’t get to me fast enough. After speaking with a psychologist about my life experiences, how being in the military has been and my current situations, she recommended that I get screened by a psychiatrist…

I know how big pharma works and how our health care system is and that wasn’t something that I wanted to hear. I have also had issues with prescription medication in the past and can proudly say that it’s been 7 years now since I’ve put anything harmful/mind alterning into my body. But because there are things that have been affecting me since I was in my early teens and situations that could’ve manipulated my chemical composition as far back as being in utero I complied, but made it known that medication isn’t my first option of treatment and will refuse unless the evidence deems it.

So until I get screened, the psychologist asked me to track my behavior/feelings for the next 10 days. It’s been a good two days so far, a lot of high energy vibration. Another human being like myself would understand and deem it vibrational harmony with the Universe, the others could perceive as if I possibly am delusional.

I’ve learned to go about my life not caring what other people think and staying true to my authentic quirky eccentric self.

 

~ love & light,

E.

 

I wrote this four years ago

MY ULTIMATE GOAL IS TO BE AT PEACE WITH MYSELF, ELIMINATE TOXIC FEELINGS AND ELEMENTS AND ENERGIES FROM MY LIFE. UNLEARN NEGATIVE AND HARMFUL PRACTICES AND THOUGHT PATTERNS. TO STOP LOOKING FOR PEOPLE THAT DON’T LOOK FOR ME AND TO CREATE A SPACE FOR MYSELF THAT IS NURTURING FOR GROWTH SO THAT I MAY GENERATE LOVING ENERGY FOR MYSELF AND OTHERS. I WANT TO NOURISH MY SPIRIT AND BALANCE MY ENERGIES. I HAVE BIG DREAMS AND I DESIRE TO LIVE A LIFE THAT I LOVE AND BE ABLE TO RADIATE THAT LOVE #NAMASTE

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Let’s talk about debt

Here’s the reality of things…

I joined the military in 2014 in hopes of finishing up my last year and a half of my Bachelor’s degree in Microbiology without having to drop a couple grand (which I did not have) or taking out student loans. I’ve seen the damage that loans, credit cards and anything that could land you in massive debt can have on a person. My entire life I’ve been against all of that and a couple other major things.

So there I was, 20 year old me with NO DEBT to my name and a couple dollars in my bank account heading to Illinois to complete my basic training. My first paycheck in the military was $500, which I sent one half to my mother and the other to my at the time girlfriend. Fast forward a year later and one deployment under my belt I had been able to save almost $4,000 and only had to worry about paying the basic necessities (rent, groceries, etc). Did I mention that I got married? Well, I did (another thing I was against) and those savings went straight down the drain, credit cards got taken out and loans put in my name… Take my advice and DO NOT pay your significant others debt, put YOUR NAME/SIGNATURE on anything that is not going to benefit YOU and STOP trying to keep up with The Jones!

Fast forward to 2018, March 17th to be exact and as of today I am $37,341.12 in debt not counting the $30k mortgage. For two years now, I’ve been guesstimating paying most of my things off by 2020 and trying to stick to a very strict budget – haven’t been 100% successful, but still gunning. After doing some math yesterday I realized that if I want to use my time in the military to increase my savings account, 2020 might not be plausible… and then I thought “get a part time server job, make killer tips and put all that towards by debt!” Sounds easy enough right?.

Now let’s move some numbers around:

  • Auto Loan #1 $10,038.23 (mom is taking over this account for 1-2 years)
  • Auto Loan #2 $14,583.60
  • Credit Card    $6,482.48
  • Consolidation Loan $5,068.81
  • iPhone 8 $660
  • Phone case $38
  • NGIS (hotel damage bill) $470
  • Lawyer fees min $75 per visit

Except for the lawyer, these are things that get deducted monthly from my checking every month. Without taking into consideration what extra cash I can scrap up by selling things that I no longer need and a part time job I want to pay off the $5k loan by January of 2019, the $6k by December of 2019 and the $14k by December 2020. I’m still debating if putting my tax refund towards one of these is a smart idea. The reason I’m focused on these three ones is because they are the ones that will sink me if I don’t get rid of them by the end of my military contract. My tentative plan is to put my tax refund (roughly $2k) towards the $5k loan. I’m intrigued by the snowball method (paying off the lowest debt first and once done putting that money on the next one on top of the minimum you were already paying). The others I already know will be paid off by December 2018 so I’m not worried.

Fast forward to coming across this:

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At this current stage in my life, perhaps 5/7 steps apply to me; I’m currently on baby step 1 trying to have a starting point of $500 for an emergency fund and I just put in my first $100 yesterday. My main goal and hardest throughout all this is to STICK TO MY BUDGET! and STOP living paycheck to paycheck.

Stick around to see how I plan on achieving this and my journey through many of lifes up’s and down’s 🙂

Have any debt chronicles you wish to share? Comment below or DM on instagram @petieandplantbased

No-bake Vegan Co-Co Balls

Let’s face it! One of the things that I thought I couldn’t give up was chocolate – I was addicted to it. Once I made the connection between my migraines, excessive chocolate intake and the fact that my skin (I suffer from eczema and was showing early signs of psoriasis) flares up more often, the transition was very easy, practically quit cold turkey for a couple months.

Fast forward 7 months or so I went to Jacksonville, FL and I was introduced to Shakti and their Cacao Bliss Balls (I’m guessing the name) and was won over by DARK chocolate. Me. Miss Milk Chocolate 4 life.

Now that I am back in Puerto Rico, I recently spent almost 10 days of chocolate indulgence and got a migraine after not eating it for three days. I’ll be honest, I almost caved today and bought a three musketeer chocolate bar, but because I am eating raw vegan for another 5 days I gave myself a talk about “where the f$#@ is your discipline” and instead, I mentally put together a recipe for a no-bake vegan cacao and coconut treat.

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Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup raw almonds (soaked overnight)
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened coconut shreds/flakes
  • 1/2 cup vegan dark chocolate
  • 1/8 cup chia seeds
  • 2 tbs coconut oil
  • 1/2 tbs raw agave (I used raw honey because I didn’t have agave available)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 3 dashes cinnamon (optional)

Preparation

  • Take 1/2 cup raw almonds and put into a blender or food processor; blend until they’re completely chopped up and looks like brown sugar.
  • Combine all of the dry (chia seeds, coconut shreds) ingredients in the blender and once well mixed pass to a mixing bowl.
  •  In a small heat resistant bowl, preferably glass place the dark chocolate and wet (coconut oil, honey, vanilla extract) ingredients and bring 1/2 cup water to a boil in a sauce pan deep enough for the bowl. Remove from heat and proceed with a Bain marie, slowly stir until all ingredients are melted and uniformly mixed, proceed to pour into the mixing bowl with the dry ingredients.
  • Once wet and dry ingredients are mixed together, place in the freezer for 5 minutes. During that time, line a baking sheet pan with parchment paper. Take mix out of the freezer and proceed to roll the mixture into small balls – dampen your hands in between, you’ll thank me later.
  • Once the mixture is on the pan, sprinkle some more coconut flakes on top of them and place in the fridge for them to set.

***Recipe yields 12 servings***

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Feel free to play around with it to meet your needs/taste buds. Use the hashtag #petiteandplantbased if you’re on instagram and want to show me yours! This was my first time ever making this treat, maybe next time I’ll add more almonds and coconut flakes 🙂