KRISTIN ACCIDENTALLY TURNS VEGETARIAN

Kristin is my closest friend and just came on working for GSG full-time on June 1. She was here all the time anyway, putting in nearly FT hours, especially with all the traveling we’ve been doing. She has made my classes SO much more efficient and effective. I love her–she’s the best thing that has happened to GSG.com in a long time. She’s strong in all the places I am weak, and she’s so loyal to me and helpful to a fault. I am so blessed.

On May 26, at a class for almost 250 people in Sandy, Utah, she said to the crowd, “You can’t hang around Robyn and not be affected by this movement.” I’d described how for a long time we’d have staff meetings and I’d have my quart of green smoothie, and she’d have her quart of Diet Coke. Then one day we suddenly BOTH had a green smoothie at staff meeting. (I was secretly–and kind of openly, too–so thrilled!) I am watching Kristin change before my eyes. She said to me recently, “If I drank TWO quarts of green smoothie a day, I basically could never get fat again.” (She’s lost 40 lbs.)

On June 3, she said to me, “I think I’ve accidentally become a vegetarian.”

LAUGHING OUT LOUD! (Keep in mind, this girl is from IDAHO. They don’t eat their potatoes without meat there!) That’s what hanging out at my house all day, working, will do to ya. She said that the only problems with this are:

(1) “I like meat!” I told her, I used to, too. You’re not me, of course, but I literally never miss it now. The only time is if I walk into someone’s house, when I’m really hungry on Sunday night, and they’re cooking a roast. (And the once a year that happens? I have a little! I can only stand a little anyway—and maybe it’s good for Vitamin B12. I’m not actually sure that’s important, since your body stores a 3-year supply, and since there are a handful of plant sources of B12 or an analog. But I digress.)

And, Kristin’s other problem with “accidental vegetarianism”…

(2) “I have all these memories of my family past, and my kids will tell anyone, ‘My mom is the greatest cook!’ And the dishes they tell people about, that I make, are pot roast, homemade rolls, and chicken-n-dumplings.”

But like so many Americans, Kristin now finds herself seriously gluten intolerant. And feeling better and better the further she gets from the S.A.D. Eating white flour once a week does not cause her a problem, but if she eats white bread a few days in a row? She’s practically doubled over with abdominal pain and bloating.

Her semi-final comment today, on that subject, was, “Well, I’ll limit it to once a week. Sunday nights.”

Sounds good to me. I always say:

“Incremental progress is progress.”

When you find something else you love on Sunday nights, you might replace the roast like I did (I made a mean roast on Sunday nights, too, 20 years ago!).   I believe no one shifts these family traditions till they WANT to. So I’m not going to pound on Kristin about that one meal a week. (Or anyone, actually. Pretty proud of all the cool stuff she’s done lately, though!)

And, just another plug for young moms: if you do this NOW, you don’t have to “undo” family memories in order to shift to a healthier, plant-based diet later. Then the family memories that your kids will remember you for in 20 years aren’t worse, they’re just different. That pint of GS always waiting for them in the fridge after school, stuff drying in the dehydrator…..Sunday night lentil tacos, black-bean burgers, hummus quesadillas….or whatever! (The possibilities are endless.)

If it makes anyone feel better, my mom never made a roast, in my childhood, not once. I seem to have survived.   😉

Thank you Boise, Twin Falls

I’m not afraid of much, but I was completely terrified to get in the car 6 days after a serious accident and drive (well, be driven) to Idaho. But thanks to the kindness of many in Boise and Twin Falls, and Kristin, my assistant who has been a phenomenal support and basically did all the work and the driving, it was a wonderful trip.

Here are Ryan, Amanda, and Kala, GSG readers who organized both events. We visited the spectacular Shoshone Falls after the second event and dinner on the town. And my littlest helper, Bella, I’m so thankful for you all.

This is Rio. He unflinchingly ate gobs of raw greens to show how long it takes to chew up what goes down easy in a quart of green smoothie. Then he gave me a giant hug (my own fault! I chose a guy whose t-shirt said “FREE HUGS!”) to a chorus, of “Oooh, careful!” from the audience. It’s okay, I’ll recover, with a coupla years of chiropractic care.

Kristin, the former opera singer, busted out singing, “His name is Rio and he dances on the sand! Oh Rio, Rio, dance across the Rio Grande!”

He said, “I’ve heard that before.”

We stayed with Kristin’s parents in the town of Burley where she grew up, in their house surrounded by a hundred acres of potatoes. So idyllic for this girl raised just off the Beltway in the big city of Washington D.C. The only bad part was that I wanted so badly to go for a run down that miles-long Road-to-Nowhere.

Anyway, loved chatting with 250 of you in Boise and 80 in Twin Falls. We’ll have a couple of videos with those who attended the class and had a great story, really soon! I hope you find yourself in this photo if you were there, and thanks for your patience with my scaled-back energy. I’m getting better and hope to be my usual hyperactive self in MESA soon! T minus 10!

ATV accident

This is a photo of me, my son Tennyson, and Citori and Jordan, the children of my friend Brent who is taking the photo. We were at the top of a mountain we had just climbed near Ephraim, Utah.

The picture was taken just a few minutes before I flipped the ATV I was driving with Tori on the back. I was taken off the mountain in a jeep and seen at the E.R. for a bruised kidney, sacral bone bruise, and concussion. I am very thankful to have no broken bones, because I remain in a tremendous amount of pain and spent the past 36 hours in bed after getting home from the hospital.

I tell you this story in the hopes that you WEAR A HELMET. I’m the one in the photo with the yellow helmet. You’ll notice that Brent’s family doesn’t wear helmets and I’m so thankful that Tori walked away from the accident with just a sore leg and foot where the 4-wheeler landed on her. (Jordan and Brent quickly got the machine off, which was spilling gasoline onto us.)

Brent took Tennyson to his games, took me to the hospital, sent flowers, and texted me this morning that he went home and cried because he couldn’t get the image out of his mind of me flying off the 4-wheeler, and lying in the dirt, and he felt responsible. Of course I could have said no to the proposal we go down a steep little ravine, and maybe things might have gone better if I didn’t run over that 4′ pine tree.

But if I got a concussion wearing a helmet, what would have happened if I didn’t?

Happy Father’s Day to all the men who provide for and love their children.

Tomorrow I’ll have some great recipes to use your early garden produce, from Michelle.

I love Idaho Falls, Real Men Eat Plants….part 2 of 3

I’m not sure what part of the male psyche allows them to believe that they’re totally good to eat a burger and six-pack of donuts all because they had a green smoothie earlier in the day. I had a meeting with Hawk Harper at Runner’s Corner Monday about organizing a GreenSmoothieGirl Humanitarian 5K (“Running In the Raw!”) to further my dream of building a badly needed orphanage for refugees in Ecuador. And he told me he loves “the little white donuts.” He figures he’s good to go, because he always drinks his greens. We had a laugh about that—I’ve heard so many men say similar things (and so have a lot of wives who read this blog).

I don’t mean to generalize. Not all men think that. (Maybe men just say it out loud, where women tell themselves that privately? Is it just bravado / machismo?)

This guy, Sam, has a spectacular story. Listen to him tell about having the contents of his chest removed from his body, and how he got off his meds and became a spectacularly healthy runner, eating plant foods and green smoothies.

He’s a man’s man. A cop and martial artist. I would rather not be caught alone in a dark alley with him if he were mad. AND HE EATS SALAD AND CALLS IT DINNER.

Go Sam! Thanks for coming outta the closet with your green drinks.

I love Idaho Falls, part 1 of 3

I went to Idaho Falls a year ago for a tri-state tournament for Tennyson’s baseball team, and just for fun, I put on the blog and facebook that I was teaching a class. A reader asked the little supplement store there, Wealth of Health or something, to host it. Their response: “Nobody here cares about whole foods.” Well, 80 people showed up.

Fast forward, I found out a few weeks ago that Tennyson’s team is playing that tourney again. So I post the class, and AGAIN the little nutrition shop tells a reader: “Nobody will care about GreenSmoothieGirl here–this is Idaho.”

225 people packing the Idaho Falls High School auditorium tells me otherwise. I loved meeting so many wonderful people in our neighbor-state, and I loved early-morning running along your beautiful, waterfalled Snake River again. (It’s flooding, too, some parts of the trail under water, forcing us into the road.) That water feature randomly in the middle of town is SPECTACULAR, more beautiful than anything I’ve seen in any big city. We loved Yellowstone’s Bear World. (That’s a 10-year old’s photography you’re looking at, since I was driving.)

Tennyson and I ate at Applebee’s, and then he rocketed the baseball over the fence for a three-run homer. The next day he insisted that we go to Applebee’s AGAIN for lunch to eat the Paradise Salad in a superstitious attempt to replicate his performance the day before.

BAM. Another over-the-fence hit. He came home with a trophy as his team won all four games in their pool (before taking 2nd in the tournament overall), plus the two balls he will proudly show you the mark where his bat tore through the hides. Tennyson is back row, far right, no hat, in the photo.

Tomorrow I have a fun little video for you of Sam the Cop who healed massive congenital heart problems and more, with a plant-based diet and green smoothies!

How GreenSmoothieGirl.com is doing

An internet marketing maven friend of mine wrote a report in Feb. called “[a very prominent raw-foods guru] versus GreenSmoothieGirl.” He wrote me this:

“You have higher traffic ranking than any of [Prominent Guru’s] web sites with a fraction of the name recognition. More traffic with fewer sites linking in, and you spend no money on advertising. You’re slowly and steadily nailing it.”

[Prominent Guru] has been out there for 15 years or more. I first ventured onto the internet a bit over 3 years ago with zero products to sell (I had early readers screaming about that, demanding recipes and help). I plan to keep steadily providing information in response to reader requests. I have never once accepted advertising dollars despite many offers of people who want to park their ads on my site or blog.

Google tells me lots of interesting things about my site. If you’re curious….

From Dec. 15 to Jan. 15, GSG had 70,000 visitors from 147 countries/territories. Highest traffic comes from U.S., Canada, the U.K., Australia, Germany, and New Zealand.

Search engines were sources of 52% of the traffic, other sites referred 15%, and 33% of you come here directly. The average time spent on the site is 5.23 minutes, with 3.37 pages visited. The 12 Steps program page is most visited, with almost 20,000 views. 8,141 people signed up for the newsletter in that time period. (Higher than usual. I think being in an article with Dr. Oz helped.) Three times as many people (over 7,000) searched for “green smoothie girl” than searched for “green smoothie.”

Three years ago I was a college professor/mom and knew nothing about the internet. Today I know just slightly more than nothing about the internet.

The site’s success has floored me, so when I am interviewed about it, I struggle to name the reasons. I think what it is, is that I just choose to support and nurture people, which is unusual in the nutrition space. The usual M.O. out there seems to be guilt and fear.

Someone at one of my Portland classes said that a prominent author in my space ends each chapter of one of their books with, “COOKED FOODS ARE POISON” or something. I really dislike hyperbole, hype, gimmicks, and especially negativity.

It’s easy to fall into that negative space. We could go on and on about how sugar or hot dogs or soda are killing us. I’ll touch on that occasionally, and I’m not Polyanna dancing on the Good Ship Lollipop: I’ll occasionally counteract voices out there I think are preaching false doctrine or skewing logic or common sense. I do believe in standing up for truth.

But as soon as I can, I’ll get back to the positive place. I dislike fear as a motive for anything–in parenting, in religion, in relationships, in school or career. So I like to keep it about hope and light here. New ideas. Encouragement. Sharing successes. Remembering children and families. (Not a place to beat you up about food. You’ve been doing that to YOURSELF for years. It’s not productive and I don’t want to add to it.)

I’ve always wanted GSG.com to be the place where we REPLACE the bad stuff with exciting ideas and delicious recipes and thrilling health benefits my readers report. I love unique or exciting, fresh ways to look at traditional practices of nutrition.

So this would be a great time to ask you this: what support do you need that you aren’t getting? What should be next for the GreenSmoothieGirl mission to bring back a whole-foods diet and kick the Standard American Diet to the curb?