If you don’t hate your book by the time it’s published….

Today I dropped my high-school junior off at school with his just-completed, illustrated children’s book. The assignment was to find out the favorite and least-favorite things of a five-year old and write/illustrate a book about it.

Considering the COMPLETE lack of artistic talent in this family, I was impressed with Cade’s final product. The book was something about Batman doing battle with an army of killer zombie carrots. (I’ll let you guess which the little boy likes and which he doesn’t, between Batman and carrots.)

Cade was grumbling on the way to school today about how much he hates his book. My comment: “I always say that if you don’t hate your book by the time it’s published, you didn’t write a good book. So that’s a good sign.”

(You’re sick of it. You’ve read it until you’re blue in the face. Any other authors can weigh in here.)

Ironically, I got a call this afternoon that the proof of The Adventures of Junk Food Dude was here! I’m now proudly carrying it around with me. One of the owners of The Good Earth just came over to my house to pick up 12 Steps courses and books, and I practically forced him to read the whole book.

I was telling Cade this morning that I want to show him the book when I got the proof. I’ve had enough space from it that I don’t mind looking at it anymore. He said, “Yeah. Well. That’s because YOU didn’t have to illustrate it!”

True enough. Lori Sume, my illustrator, you are so creative and artistic, I just love you. You worked so hard.

Can’t wait for y’all to see the book, which is maybe my favorite thing I’ve ever done. A few weeks now!


10 minutes to feel like a great mom. Because you are!

I saw Kristy again, when I was running errands today.

She’s the mom whose 6-year old daughter had her first green smoothie at Roxberry, my first GSG franchisee.

Kristy said, “I’m making them at home now. My daughter is totally okay with drinking green stuff because she saw them doing it at the smoothie store.”

Don’t underestimate third-party endorsement of a new or controversial idea. A five-year old seeing a 12-year old cousin “eating healthy” is huge. Tell the 12-year old that she’s rockin’ that five-year old’s world, because she might not know what power and influence she has.

I said to Kristy, because she was so excited: “It makes you feel like a good mom, huh.”

And you ARE a good mom for taking a bit of time, creating a habit, making sure your children get liquid greens that add up to 7 servings daily. (That’s a pint.) And then learning to make a big salad every night for dinner.

And then acquiring 10 main dishes in your repertoire that are plant-based whole-food meals. (You get the idea. You keep taking another step down the path.)

Modern moms feel far too much guilt. The Information Age has resulted in so much angst about a thousand angles of parenting–so it’s inevitable that we fall short in many, if not most of them!

Pick the simple but important low-hanging fruit, as a parent. Do the stuff that has the biggest impact for the least investment. For example, sometimes we’re checked-out and distracted when our child gives us the blow-by-blow of a TV show he watched. But when our child is distraught after being rejected by her group of friends at school, we drop what we’re doing, look her in the eye, and listen empathically. It’s not hard to do, and your child may remember that forever. We recognize the things that really matter.

If you can spend only 10 mins. in the kitchen–even if that is ALL the time you have–spend it making green smoothies rather than Orange Julius or ice cream shakes.

The green smoothies habit makes you feel good about your parenting. It doesn’t just support your children’s physical and emotional/mental health. It ameliorates the burden of Parent Guilt, which is an epidemic and which is so nonproductive.

When you have strengths, you can live with your weaknesses. This first habit I teach is an easy strength to cultivate, I think.

I’m not great at sewing my kids’ clothes and making Halloween costumes, or mending them, like my sister-in-law Kelli. I wasn’t great at sitting on the floor for hours playing with my little ones, like my friend Kim. I’m not the most patient parent, like my old neighbor Alice.

But I am really good at some core habits to feed my kids good nutrition.

(My other strengths include stretching my kids’ brains with intelligent conversations; teaching them that reading is fun; helping them find ways to be entrepreneurial; and teaching them about the value of work and accountability.) Hopefully these few strengths cover a multitude of other sins.

I hope you’ll spend a few minutes congratulating yourself for the areas within parenting you are darn good at. What are YOU good at? Parents need self-esteem too!

NYC: hot dogs or raw gourmet? Horn of plenty or fries and a shake?

After my second trip to New York City this year, the verdict is this: in keeping with the diversity of that teeming city as immigrants poured in during the 19th and early 20th century, the city is all things.

Hot dog stands AND lush edible vegetables growing next to the street on 9th Ave. A horn of plenty in the Macy’s parade, and a giant Ronald McDonald and Pillsbury Dough Boy. A huge Hershey’s store on Times Square, AND Sarma Melngailis’ Pure Food and Wine restaurant.

(See them below. My friends Jamie and Jennie were afraid to try the oyster mushroom I am showing in the photo, so I enjoyed most of the 10 fabulous courses myself. Both of my friends suffer from horrific endocrine / hormone problems that cause them great pain as well as infertility. I am working on getting them to see the connection between those issues and diet/lifestyle. Both subsist primarily on junk food, so raw food dishes taste strange to them. Anyway, the food was wonderful, but DARN I didn’t get to meet Sarma.)

A few of my photos

–served and cleaned up at a downtown soup kitchen run by Baptists

–watched the Macy’s parade including Jessica Simpson, Kanye West, and Gladys Knight

–ran all over the city and Central Park on the subway and on foot, impressed in the photo below at the creative places I found KALE growing!

–hung out with some drag queens, firefighters, and Elmo (see photos for proof)

–saw some fabulous shows like Promises, Promises with Kristen Chenoweth, Sean Hayes, Molly Shannon

–found a sports bar to watch BYU lose by one point to the U of U

–and of course shopped till we dropped on Canal Street and Chinatown, and here at FAO Schwartz (or the candyland “FAO Schweetz” here!)

Somehow I missed snapping the parade photo of–I am not making this up–the cornucopia of plenty from the original Thanksgiving followed IMMEDIATELY by a giant fries-and-a-shake. I did, however, capture my Nemesis #1 and Nemesis #2 as they floated past us on the edge of Central Park.

On Thanksgiving I reflected on the abundance and the paucity of modern life. How we can tap the amazing things available to us like never before in history–or we can indulge in those things that are shiny on the outside but slowly drain away our life force.

Syrus the Dog, and his Green Smoothie Habit

We’ve featured dogs on this blog before, but just in case you don’t think the same rules apply to dogs that apply to humans (processed food bad, whole foods good), here’s GSG reader Lisa’s story:

Hi Robyn!

I would like to tell you about my dog, Syrus and send you some photos to add to your Green Smoothie Mustache collection.   Syrus was diagnosed almost 12 weeks about with a brain tumor.   Surgery was not an option.   Syrus was put on high doses of steroids (at one point he was up to 6 mg of Dexamethasone, which is 8-10 times stronger than prednisone–it’s a lot!), which caused him to basically waste away in front of me.

He went from 70 pounds to 52 in 2 weeks.   He developed a GI bleed and a urinary tract infection (UTI).

He has been on a raw diet (high quality, certified raw meats and vegetables) for about 7 months.   I started him on daily green-smoothies (I eat a 95% raw diet with green smoothies), along with his other holistic supplements, when he was diagnosed.   He is doing FANTASTIC!   Better than I could ever have hoped for.

He gained his weight back, he takes his walks again, and regained his balance (before he looked like he was drunk).   His stomach healed and his UTI is gone, even though the antibiotics didn’t work (the vet wanted to put him on antibiotics for life!).   He loves his Green Smoothies!   When I get the blender out, he waits by the blender, then out to the back patio to lap it up.   He has not turned away from one yet!   In the rare instance where I make one for myself but don’t have time to give him his, he gets upset with me!   It’s hilarious!

We love our Green Smoothies!   I am new to your site but I love what I have seen so far.   Thanks for all you do!


Lisa and Syrus