Gifts from Nature: Sprouts!

Crystal Cooper

As we prepare for winter amid these overwhelming times, great opportunity and responsibility exist for maintaining our health and strength. Relying on our abilities and resources has become vital as our societal systems sustain prolonged, multi-faceted stress. One way to move forward with health-focused lifestyle changes is to grow food indoors for whole-being inspiration. Considering combined nutritional value, cost, and required effort and maintenance, one method outshines them all—sprouting! By harnessing the ancient practice of sprouting seeds, we can reap the benefits of eating live food while it’s too cold for plants to grow outside.

Through the sprouting process, water and electricity awaken and enliven stored enzymes, vitamins, minerals, amino acids, and antioxidants. Eating sprouts is like eating every part of an entire plant at a very young age. It’s as simple as soaking, draining, rinsing, and storing. Given the convenience of such a power-packed food, sprouting is a historically popular form of ancient agriculture.

The advantages of eating sprouts are vast. Being easily digestible, the bioavailability of sprouts provides a synergy of nutrients with gut flora. This makes them a notable source of energy and protein. The sprouting process also inhibits certain anti-nutrients found in many grains and nuts. Enjoying your crop as raw as possible provides the most benefit, as heat can damage nutrients. It’s also wise to introduce sprouts in small quantities, as some bellies may be sensitive to this live, concentrated food.

In addition to being a superior food, studies have shown that sprouts particularly benefit the brain, heart, lungs, organs, and bones, as well as help with cancer prevention and lowering cholesterol. They also regulate blood sugar and are therefore ideal for those with diabetes and inflammatory issues. You can access these benefits by incorporating sprouts long-term into your diet. Furthermore, not all sprouts are created equal. Specific plants provide particular health advantages. Sproutpeople.org is a great resource for research.

An abundance of information and options exist in the simple world of sprouting.

A cornucopia of seeds can be used, including all edible grains, seeds, and legumes. From a simple mason jar or hemp bag to self-draining, variable ventilation, stacking sprouters, a range of growing mediums are available. Sproutpeople.org is a complete sprouting info and resource website, providing all one needs to know about sprouting while streamlining the process of purchasing quality seeds and growing mediums.

Dry seeds can remain viable for one to five or more years, making them ideal for stocking up and storing. Dormant seeds should be stored in a cool, dry, dark place. You can freeze them for increased shelf life; just be careful to avoid freezer-burn. Since refrigerators are humid, they are not ideal for dry seed storage. However, once the seeds have been sprouted, rinsed, dried completely (towels or a salad spinner are helpful), and stored in air-tight containers, they’ll stay fresh and bacteria-free in your refrigerator for weeks.

With a fresh crop of sprouts, occasions to experiment with flavors, textures, and consistencies are infinite! From spicy to sweet, big fava beans to small sesame seeds, recipes are limited by only your creativity level. They can be added to salads—but not just spinach and lettuce ones. Sprouts spice up anything from tabouli to potato salad. Being the most bio-available and nutrient-dense protein for the cost, sprouts are a sustainable meat alternative. Sandwiches, soup, hummus, salsa, pizza—they can even be dried and ground to make bread flour. Sprouts are a natural, nourishing way to support us when we need it most.

It can be challenging to remain happy and healthy throughout our long U.P. winters. We can grow these fun, teeny kitchen gardens to satisfy our minds and bodies with a living harvest during our darkest months. Making sprouts a regular part of one’s diet can provide extra energy, vitamin C, and weight loss—something many particularly appreciate this season. Plus, these baby plants can delight us with their sweet spark of new life in our indoor winter world.

Crystal Cooper has called Marquette home for over a decade and is passionate about natural healing modalities as well as personal and global sustainability. Crystal advocates resiliency-promoting actions within the community in the face of our changing climate.Crystal.coocooper@gmail.com.

Excerpted with permission from the Winter 2020-2021 issue of Health & Happiness U.P. Magazine. Copyright 2020, Empowering Lightworks, LLC. All rights reserved.

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The Age of Miracles, Martin Achatz

My daughter has reached that age
when her body unfurls
gospels of growth all night,
psalms filled with arm, leg, hair, sweat,
breath staled by the tilt
from girl to woman. She will soon
inherit gifts. Blood. Ovum. Creation.
Then she will be lost to me. Gone
on a long journey across desert, mountain,
to a distant Bethlehem.

This December, she tells my wife
she doesn’t believe in caribou
flying over glacier, tundra. Questions
things like seraphim choirs,
kingdoms at the North Pole,
donkeys that sing “Dona nobis pacem”
on the winter solstice. I know,
she says, nods as if she’s accomplice
to some divine conspiracy theory.
So I write her this poem
about last Friday, when twenty inches
of snow fell in Cairo, Alexandria,
Jerusalem. Brought the entire Middle East
a silence it hadn’t heard in 112 years.
Children in refugee camps danced
in the blizzard, made rosefinches
with ice bodies, palm frond wings.
No bombs. No bullets. Just white.
Everywhere. White upon white.
From the Mediterranean to the Mount of Olives.

Martin Achatz is a husband/father/teacher/musician/poet who lives in Ishpeming. His work has appeared in Paterson Literary Review, The Other Journal, and The Macguffin, among others. He’s currently serving his second term as Poet Laureate of the Upper Peninsula and teaches in NMU’s English Department.

Excerpted with permission from the Winter 2020-2021 issue of Health & Happiness U.P. Magazine. Copyright 2020, Empowering Lightworks, LLC. All rights reserved.

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Green Living: Shopping for Values, Steve Waller

Life has changed, more than just COVID. Old values face new challenges—climate, rural flight (urbanization), jobs and energy. Like COVID, these won’t go away unless we do something. A technological solution has risen from obscurity and matured. It is finally the best economic choice, but it requires new values and attitudes.

Solar is the solution, not just for the homes and businesses of those who can afford it, but also for utilities serving the rest of us who can’t afford it or who rent. Solar has many good points, but there are tradeoffs that question and challenge old,outdated values.

Homeowners who install solar commit to something that neighbors may not be ready to accept. Solar homeowners willingly invest in what they already had (electricity) but value being cleaner and not making the challenges listed above worse. They save money and increase their home value while simultaneously giving doubting neighbors the unexpected gift of stabilized electricity prices and a cleaner environment. Neighbors who see solar working cleanly, silently, effectively, and reliably change their outdated resistance.

The cost for residential solar is about the price of a moderate car except cars need constant refueling, insurance, maintenance, and are pretty much dead after ten years, while solar panels are very much alive, and doubling or eventually tripling the initial investment. A car is an expense, not an investment. Cars never return their original cost.

Two cars cost twice as much for ten years. Two solar panels return twice as much for more than twenty-five years. Solar is an effortless, secure, tax-free, inflation-proof investment, not an expense. To say someone can’t afford solar is saying they don’t have a 401K because they have to put money into the account. If you don’t invest, you don’t get the profit.

Utility grade solar (thousands of solar panels grouped together) should not be taken lightly because there are tradeoffs that challenge old values while offering important new benefits.

Utility solar effortlessly converts all grid-tied customers (resistant households, low-income households, businesses, mines, factories, farms, entire towns) to clean instead of dirty power. New utility solar is now officially the least expensive electricity available, less expensive than natural gas. Grid-tied customers pay less with solar energy. Local communities benefit from tax revenue generated by utility solar panels. Solar stabilizes electricity cost (no fuel price hikes). Solar storage strongly reduces the need for old, expensive, dirty power plants.

U.P. Facts: Solar panels output more power in our cold weather.

The backs of “bifacial” solar panels collect additional energy from sunlight reflected from snow. Solar “trackers” tilt panels for maximum output during the high summer sun or the low winter sun,and also help shed snow.

Utility tradeoff: Thousands of utility solar panels cover hundreds or maybe thousands of acres of rural land. Most see those panels as a needed improvement. Others aren’t ready to see their landscape change. The value of clean solar energy has to outweigh the value of a view for a few. Solar panels prevent much more CO2 than trees can capture. Without solar, our electricity increases CO2, warms earth, and kills wildlife.

Solar brings clean, stable, badly needed, long-term, non-toxic power, tax revenue, and jobs to rural job-starved areas, and benefits the entire region. Utilities must be pushed to build solar farms faster, and residents must value some acreage being safely and economically converted to clean energy.

Give the gift that values our entire generation and kids, brings badly needed resources to local communities, and protects the environment (climate, air, water, and wildlife). Become a vocal supporter of clean solar energy.

Steve Waller’s family lives in a wind- and solar-powered home. He has been involved with conservation and energy issues since the 1970s and frequently teaches about energy. Steve can be reached at Steve@UPWallers.net.

Excerpted with permission from the Winter 2020-2021 issue of Health & Happiness U.P. Magazine. Copyright 2020, Empowering Lightworks, LLC. All rights reserved.

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Health & Happiness 2020 Donation Winner: Camp New Day, Akasha Khalsa

For youths who have a parent incarcerated in the prison system, it can be difficult to have fun childhood experiences without being weighed down by the burdens of their complex family lives. One organization in the U.P. set out nearly two decades ago to provide such youths a place where they could let go of their burdens for a week and enjoy the outdoors while in community with other young people in similar life situations.

Camp New Day is the Upper Peninsula’s only summer camp that serves youths with parents or caregivers who are incarcerated, and it is this year’s recipient of Health & Happiness U.P. Magazine’s annual donation for 2020. (See p.9 for more info.)
 
The camp lasts for one week each July and includes activities such as archery, fishing, canoeing, kayaking, and nighttime campfires. Although the camp’s target population is children of incarcerated parents, the camp’s goal is to be a typical summer camp experience where kids only talk about their experiences with caregiver incarceration if they wish to.
 
“A lot of our kids have a lot of burdens and things that they have to tend to at home and it just lets them have a hopefully carefree week being kids,” Board President and Camp Director Gene Champagne said. “We’re perfectly willing to talk about [incarceration] if the camper wants to talk about it, but usually the counselors hear it at night in stories, and when the kids are talking in their cabins.” 

To serve the camp’s target population, camp staff receives two days of in-depth training before the week begins. 
 

“We have pretty rigorous training, not only what the state requires us to teach and educate our staff about, but also things that might be unique to children who have an incarcerated parent or caregiver,” explains Champagne. “Some of them might be, not all, but some of them, might have more examples of anxiety or [feelings of] worthlessness or guilt or who knows what else that might be associated with the incarceration.”
 
Oftentimes, Champagne said, the campers may come in unsure of themselves and unsure of the camp experience, but by the middle of the week they acclimate to the carefree atmosphere.
 
“Sometimes the smiles don’t come out until Wednesday; I call it Miracle Wednesday. You know, some kids might come in never having been to a summer camp before. I know the first time I went, I was probably nervous and scared. And some of them might come in with a real defensive attitude, (having) never been to camp before,” Champagne said. “But I call it Miracle Wednesday because by Wednesday they’ve had a day and a half at camp, and they realize, Hey, this is a fun, safe place to be. I’m getting three square meals a day and we’re doing all this cool stuff. And you see the smiles really start to come out.”
 
The organization, which hosted its first camp in 2002, drew the idea for its mission from a social outreach project at St. Paul’s church in Marquette inspired by a camp with the same premise in Denver.
 
The camp currently accepts U.P. youths aged nine to fourteen, and provides any necessities to the campers to ensure they are able to attend, according to Champagne.

“We provide everything free of charge to the campers, whether they need a toothbrush, bedding, or transportation,” Champagne said.
 

Camp New Day U.P. usually accommodates about twenty-five to thirty campers each summer. The campers are housed in four cabins by age range and gender, with about six campers and two counselors per cabin.
 
Unfortunately, Champagne said, the organization was unable to host a camp this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic, so instead board members traveled to see some of the campers and give them care packages of items that would usually have been distributed at camp, including beach towels, blankets, sunscreen, glasses, games, and other camping supplies.
 
In the future, Champagne said, the camp hopes to expand to accommodate children who age out of the current program. Although the target population is often quite mobile due to the foster care system and family financial burdens, making it difficult to keep in touch with campers through the years, Camp New Day U.P. hopes to host small regional camps throughout the year for high school students. 

 
The camp survives on the generosity of organizations and individuals, Champagne said.

People donate time, money and goods to the program. Counselors for the camp are always in demand, especially male counselors for the boys’ cabins, added Champagne. The camp also looks for volunteers who can share fun skills with the campers.
 
“There’s groups of individuals around the UP that make blankets for these kids all year and donate to the camp, and the kids are just amazed,” Champagne said.
 
“I didn’t know there were so many people who cared about us… and who don’t even know us,” an anonymous camper said.
 
Akasha Khalsa is a student at Northern Michigan University, where she studies English literature and French. She is currently employed as a desk editor for the North Wind Independent Student Newspaper.

Excerpted with permission from the Winter 2020-2021 issue of Health & Happiness U.P. Magazine. Copyright 2020, Empowering Lightworks, LLC. All rights reserved.

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Healthy Cooking: Soybeans &Women’s Health,Val Wilson

soybeans and women's health, healthy cooking, U.P. holistic business, U.P. wellness publication

When it comes to keeping women strong and healthy, soybeans and products made with soybeans can be very helpful. Soybeans contain easily absorbable iron, many B vitamins, and carotin, support detoxification, promote vitality, and feed and nurture the lungs and large intestines.

Soybeans made into tofu are high in calcium. When made into tempeh, it is 19.5% protein. Containing all eight essential amino acids, it is a complete protein. When made into miso, it has 11 grams of complete protein in each tablespoon. And by fermenting it to make the miso, its healing properties are enhanced. Miso is a living food containing lactobacillus, a healthful micro-organism that aids digestion. There are so many wonderful health benefits from soy foods, I can see why we have been eating them for thousands of years.

Studies have shown soybeans can support your bones by reducing bone loss due to osteoporosis, helping to reduce the risk of fractures. Researchers conclude that their findings indicate postmenopausal women and others with low bone density could benefit from consuming soy.

I feel there is a lot of confusion about the plant-based phytoestrogen isoflavones found in soybeans. This part of the bean does not disrupt your estrogen levels, it balances them. If your estrogen level is too low, it raises it; if your estrogen level is too high, it lowers it. These isoflavones also have been credited with slowing the effects of osteoporosis, relieving some side effects of menopause, and alleviating some side effects of cancer. They have also been shown to dramatically lower the undesirable LDL cholesterol. It is interesting that in China, where they eat soybean products such as tofu, tempeh, and miso every day, until recently, they did not have a term in their language for hot flashes.

Tofu Kabobs

Wooden kabob sticks
1 lb. fresh firm tofu
1 onion (cut in chunks)
4 carrots (cut in long, round diagonals)
1 yellow summer squash (cut in cubes)
20 radishes (cut in thick rounds)

Marinade:
1/3 cup tamari
¼ cup olive oil
¼ cup water
2 Tbsp. each: brown rice vinegar and mirin
1 Tbsp. brown rice syrup
1 tsp. basil
1 tsp. thyme

Arrange tofu and all vegetables in a shallow dish, lying flat and not stacked on top of each other. Whisk together marinade ingredients and pour over vegetables. Let marinate for 30 minutes. Take the wooden kabob sticks and place tofu chunks and vegetables on each one, alternating the vegetables to make each kabob unique. Heat a skillet and brown kabobs on each side, or place kabobs on a cookie sheet and bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes. To grill the kabobs, soak the wooden sticks in water for 20 minutes first, then prepare kabobs as described above before grilling.

Chef Valerie Wilson, a.k.a, Macro Val, has been teaching cooking classes since 1997. Visit her website to purchase her cookbook Year Round Healthy Holiday Cooking, set up a phone consultation, or listen to her radio show, http://www.macrval.com. Facebook, Macro Val Food.

Excerpted with permission from the Fall 2020 issue of Health & Happiness U.P. Magazine. Copyright 2020, Empowering Lightworks, LLC. All rights reserved.

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Creative Inspiration: Midwife to the U.P.’s Arts Scene, Anita Meyland, Ann Hilton Fisher

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Have you noticed the vitality of the arts in the Upper Peninsula? As with any example of robust health, many factors have combined over time to create this success. One woman who played a key role in this by example, educating, and organizing, is Anita Meyland.

Anita was born on March 5, 1897, to an artistic Milwaukee family. Her father, Fredrick Elke, learned how to paint frescoes, painting on wet plaster, and his work decorated many area churches.

Anita graduated from the University of Wisconsin in 1917 and became an art teacher in Milwaukee. Upon marrying English teacher Gunther Meyland in 1924, they moved to Marquette where he had been hired by the normal school, now Northern Michigan University.

Although others called Anita “the grande dame of culture” in Marquette, “patroness of the arts” and even “bohemian,” the words she most often used to describe herself were “teacher” and “dilettante.”

Anita loved to teach.

She taught art in the Marquette and Ishpeming schools. She brought a group of women painters together who met every week for eleven years, studying a new painter each week,and then learning to paint in that style. She created “The Paintbox,” a children’s program held on Saturday mornings for any child who wanted to attend. She taught adult education art classes within the school system and for the elderly residents of Pine Ridge. She’s best known for organizing and naming Marquette’s first “Art on the Rocks” show in 1950, showing the work of ten local artists, most of whom she had trained. Her work with the Lake Superior Art Association and the Art on the Rocks show earned her countless awards, including the naming of the gazebo at Presque Isle Park (the site of Art on the Rocks for many years) after her.

It’s more surprising that she would embrace the term “dilettante.” We’re now in an era that venerates specialization. The term “dilettante” suggests a dabbler—someone who never takes anything too seriously. Anita would vigorously disagree. She never stopped learning new things and never stopped sharing them.

So, in addition to her painting, Anita learned to weave, and organized an Upper Peninsula weavers group. She studied pottery, and 200 pots from her own collection formed the basis of a pottery exhibit at NMU in 1980. She learned, and then taught classes in scrimshaw, quilting, spinning, pewter, ironwork, beading, candle-making, and woodcarving.

Nor did Anita limit herself to the visual arts.

She was a charter member of the Marquette Community Concert Association, and active in the Saturday Music Club. She wrote a play for Marquette’s Centennial in 1949. A newspaper article from 1984 describes her eagerly preparing for the upcoming U.P. Young Authors conference, planning a theme based on cats—ranging from T.S. Eliott to Garfield.

What about Anita Meyland as “bohemian”? Scrapbooks from the early years of the Lake Superior Art Association include a 1963 invitation to “Vida’s Vignettes—An Evening with Vida Lautner, Artist.” The Tuesday evening event began with a reception at 8:30, followed by a talk at 9, “art and punch on the rocks” at 10:30, “the vernissage” (showing) at 11 p.m., and then at 3:00 a.m. “Comes the Dawn.”

There were people who thought the name “Art on the Rocks” was inappropriate because it suggested drinking. Anita was not inclined to change it. In a 1978 interview, she was described as “a little indignant” at the prospect of a return to provincialism in the arts, saying “I’m afraid we’re going back in that direction.”

Above all, Anita Meyland believed you should never stop learning, and never stop growing. Anita continued pursuing her multiple artistic interests right up until her death on March 7, 1995, just two days after her 98th birthday.

Ann Hilton Fisher grew up in Marquette and remembers Anita Meyland in her lovely home on Pine Street.  After a career as a public interest attorney in Chicago, she and her husband have retired to Marquette where she volunteers with the Marquette Regional History Center. This article is adapted from a presentation given at the History Center’s 2019 cemetery tour.
  

Excerpted with permission from the Fall 2020 issue of Health & Happiness U.P. Magazine. Copyright 2020, Empowering Lightworks, LLC. All rights reserved.

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Green Living: Women Changing the World, Steve Waller

women activists, green living, U.P. wellness publication, U.P. holistic business

Ordinary, caring people who think clearly, express themselves logically, and communicate effectively are actively shaping our future. They view the big picture, including future generations, and recognize actions we have to take today to improve tomorrow. They rarely start out with privilege and authority. They mostly start just with passion and determination. Maybe it’s you, or your neighbor.

That’s how women such as Naomi Klein, Vandana Shiva, Naomi Oreskes, Winona LaDuke, and Erin Brockovich became recognized and powerful. Because of them, our lives are better.

It isn’t always facts and figures that persuade.

It’s style and relationships. How and to whom you communicate is often more effective than what you communicate. It’s knowing how to say something, how to get through a preconception or bias that makes the difference. Gentle persuasion can lift a very heavy stone. Compassion, not just for your subject, but for your partner, friend, and neighbor, keeps doors of communication open.

But…One individual cannot possibly make a difference, alone. It is individual efforts, collectively, that makes a noticeable difference—all the difference in the world! — Dr. Jane Goodall

For change to actually happen, effort needs to be collective, shaping views for a wide audience.

Share and garner support. Become collective. An excellent example is Greta Thunberg.

Greta Thunberg, a seventeen-year-old Swedish environmental activist, got started after convincing her parents to reduce their own carbon footprint. For two years, Thunberg challenged her parents to lower the family’s environmental impact. She tried showing them graphs and data, but when that did not work, she warned her family they were stealing her future. Giving up flying in part meant her mother had to give up her international career as an opera singer.

Thunberg credits her parents’ eventual changes with giving her hope and belief she could make a difference. The family story is recounted in the 2020 book Our House is on Fire: Scenes of a Family and a Planet in Crisis.

climate activism, women activists, green living, U.P. wellness publication, U.P. holistic business

n 2018, at age fifteen, Greta spent school days outside the Swedish parliament holding a sign reading “School strike for climate.” Soon, ordinary young people organized a school climate strike movement called “Fridays for Future.”

Thunberg’s youth and straightforward speaking in public to political leaders and assemblies criticizes world leaders for their failure on the climate crisis. In 2019, multiple coordinated multi-city protests included over a million students each. To avoid flying, Thunberg sailed to North America where she attended the U.N. Climate Action Summit. Her exclamation “How dare you?” was widely featured by the press. Thunberg has inspired what is called “The Greta Effect.” All this has come from a teenager with Asperger’s syndrome, which Greta calls “my super-power.”

Rachel Carson (1907-1964) was an American marine biologist and author. In the 1950s, she focused on conservation and problems she believed were caused by synthetic pesticides. She and her classic book Silent Spring (1962) were met with fierce opposition by chemical companies. Her book eventually spurred a reversal in national pesticide policy, a nationwide ban on DDT and other pesticides. It inspired a movement that led to the creation of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

The Rachel Carson Prize, an international environmental award established in Norway, commemorates her achievements and awards women who distinguished themselves in outstanding environmental work.

Those who contemplate the beauty of the earth find reserves of strength that will endure as long as life lasts. There is something infinitely healing in the repeated refrains of nature—the assurance that dawn comes after night, and spring after winter. — Rachel Carson

You don’t have to be special. You have to become special.

Steve Waller’s family lives in a wind- and solar-powered home. He has been involved with conservation and energy issues since the 1970s and frequently teaches about energy. Steve can be reached at Steve@UPWallers.net.

Excerpted with permission from the Fall 2020 issue of Health & Happiness U.P. Magazine. Copyright 2020, Empowering Lightworks, LLC. All rights reserved.

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Spotlight On…. U.P. Women of Wellness

Welcome to Health & Happiness U.P. Magazine’s “Honoring Women” Thirteenth Anniversary issue! With all of the challenges to so many aspects of our wellness going on this year, we hope to support and inspire you with a closer view of a few of the many U.P. women working to support our wellness holistically.

For some, this can take many forms. Kate Lewandowski coaches breathwork (Breathe Well, Be Well) dance, yoga, massage, and healthy mental practices in Marquette. She also co-owns several businesses, including comprehensive wellness and play center BeWell Marquette, a Thai massage school, and a juice bar – BeWell Elixirs.

Kate Lewandowski, BeWell Marquette, U.P. holistic business, U.P. holistic wellness publication
Kate Lewandowski, BeWell Marquette

Kate explains, “I want people to leave feeling inspired and worthy, more worthy than when they walked in. There are so many right ways, and helping people see and discover that—that’s a motivating piece of it for me.”

Currently, BeWell Marquette’s group classes include mindfulness, movement therapy, self-massage, yoga, dance, Tai Chi, breathwork, and sound baths. Various practitioners are also offering massage, physical therapy, breathwork, sound therapy, clinical herbalism, private yoga therapy, and health coaching. Time can also be booked in BeWell Marquette’s salt room.

“The endless striving to be a successful human, and also the desire to help others be successful human beings,” inspired Kate to go into this line of work. She clarifies, “In part, that means being present to what’s happening and what’s being asked of us. In my case, I’m not the dreamer. Somebody else has grand ideas, and my task is to say yes to whatever needs to be manifested around me.”

She first got into health and wellness as a veterinarian and practiced medicine for several years before realizing her focus was to help people connect to the world around them and each other more than to work with animals. Before her holistic career, Kate worked as a landscaper, a jewelry designer as she and her partner were traveling, and as a wildlife researcher in the field.

Kate observes, “It doesn’t matter what we do; it’s the integrity we bring to what we do; it’s how we go about it that’s important.”

Kate’s favorite part of her work is “seeing the a-ha moments in individuals, hearing the feedback of ‘I’m feeling great,’ ‘this was helpful,’ those personal successes.”

“There’s so much suffering around that I feel is optional (pain is not optional but suffering is), and finding these ways to help…. There are so many options,” Kate adds. After exploring various healing modalities, she has returned to the basics of breath and mind. Kate declares, “The simplicity and power of a nourishing breath and nurturing thoughts are incomparable.”

Melissa Copenhaver of Suunta Wellness in Marquette provides holistic health nursing services, auricular acupuncture, and energy work, as well as social and emotional therapy, with a focus on children. She also collaborates and supports other resources for those who have experienced trauma, such as with the Child Advocacy Center and sexual assault examinations, and is an Associate Professor in Mental Health Nursing at Northern Michigan University.

Melissa explains, “Someone seeking holistic nursing services can expect to meet with a nurse to review a health history and identify the goal(s) they want to work on.  Together the nurse and the client identify what interventions would be most helpful in reaching their goal(s). Auricular acupuncture originated in the treatment of addictions, but the five points in the ear have also shown promise for addressing things like anxiety and insomnia.” She adds, “Holistic nursing energy work involves the nurses using their hands to help restore balance and harmony through working with the human energy field or life force.  I have been using these practices in my work for several years now.”

Melissa Copenhaver, Suunta Wellness, U.P. holistic business, U.P. holistic wellness publication
Melissa Copenhaver, Suunta Wellness

Melissa started out as a public health nurse. She says, “I always had an interest in health prevention. It seems our health care system is designed to address things once they cause significant impact. Public health nursing works from a prevention standpoint and is relationship-based. As a public health nurse, I was able to work with the same families for several years. We really build a relationship, and we’re able to come up with ways to promote their health. And I think there’s just a healing and therapeutic impact from the relationship.”

“Eventually, I began to realize that if we’re looking at public health, we have to look at mental health, and that my public health nursing work was missing that social and emotional component,” Melissa describes. “I understand that every client comes in with their own story, and possibly a story that includes trauma. And so, I make sure that I’m doing my best to create a safe place for them.”

Melissa says, “I’m so fortunate because I do a lot of different things and I really enjoy all the things I do. It really comes back to those relationships, and also those opportunities to collaborate with individuals to improve their health by empowering them, showing them that the changes they want to make are possible, and that I’m going to be there for them to support their making those changes.”

Reiki practitioner and Reiki Master Penny Seidl of Crystal Haven Body, Mind & Spirit LLC works with individuals as well as animals to help bring relaxation, stress reduction, comfort, support, and pain reduction. Penny explains, “The Reiki energy comes from Source or a Higher Power. It draws in universal life force energy, bringing that back into the body to help attain a natural balance. And I’m the conduit connecting the person with the energy.”

Crystal Haven Body, Mind & Spirit, LLC, Penny Seidl, U.P. holistic business, U.P. wellness publication
Penny Seidl, Crystal Haven Body,
Mind & Spirit LLC

Penny also sometimes incorporates crystal work, utilizing the vibrations that come naturally from the crystals within a Reiki session, or separately. “All living things have a vibration, and so do other items, such as crystals. A frequency is emitted from everything here on earth. Oftentimes people find it hard to grasp that there’s energy coming from a crystal or a mineral. However, old school-style watches have quartz in them to help the mechanism keep time due to the frequency emitted. Most cell phones have LCD screens. That’s liquid crystal developed by Marcel Vogel when working with IBM many years ago. He got crystals to generate energy to show images. Crystals are all around us, and within our everyday lives.

When I use crystals with people, they help bring harmony and relaxation back to the body to help balance return.

I focus on the seven main chakra (energy center) points of the body from head to toe, utilizing the stones I feel would be best for the situation at hand, and for the result we’re hoping to obtain. Individuals are always clothed, often with a blanket over them, on a massage type table. I’ll use the appropriate crystals directly on the body, and also around the body to help with the containment and movement of energy.”

Penny provides her private sessions at a studio in Laurium, and also does crystal placement for individuals throughout their property, helping them create crystal grids for bringing peace and relaxation to their homes.

She started collecting crystals at age four, and comes from a family that used to make jewelry. “I grew up with crystals always around me. Over time, my collections grew, and also my willingness to learn more about earth sciences. Eventually, I noticed whenever I went to a gem or rock shop, I came away feeling either really drained or really energized. I couldn’t put together why, so I started looking into it further. I realized, I’m actually feeling this! It’s not made up. It does affect me! By age thirteen, I began obtaining knowledge from wherever I could about the different properties of crystals throughout the world. And my collection’s started to become very heavy!”

Later, energy work drew Penny because of the relaxation and comfort she experienced when receiving it.

“I enjoyed being immersed within that light. I wanted to learn how to do that for myself, and eventually completed training in the three levels of Reiki and the Master teacher training in the Usui tradition, the original Reiki training that came available.” Penny currently offers online classes, teaching others how to do this for themselves, their friends, and their clients too, if they decide to have a practice.

Penny also appreciates how well Reiki works with other therapies, whether they’re medical, physical therapy, chiropractic, or massage, and how relaxing and re-energizing it can be. “It’s like a tune-up,” she enthuses. “Results vary, however, 99.5% of the time, people experience centering, quieting of the mind, connecting the body, mind, and spirit as one. I like being part of facilitating that… It’s just a thrill to see people thrive.”

Many of Bonnie Cronin’s clients turn to her at Marquette’s North Shore Naturopathic and Acupuncture after they’ve gone to a conventional doctor and their lab results come back normal, but they don’t feel well. They may have less energy, hormonal imbalances, digestive problems, or a combo of these or other issues.

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Bonnie Cronin ND
North Shore Naturopathic & Acupuncture
Bonnie Cronin, ND, North Shore
Naturopathic & Acupuncture

Bonnie says, “Initially, I sit with the person and discuss their history, and all their chief complaints. Then I review all the systems to get a good sense of their overall health…” including their digestion, stress level, support network, social outlets, exercise, and the amount and quality of food and water they consume.

“I see a lot of people with autoimmune issues, so we might work on digestive health, even though they might not have any symptoms. I might do an IgG food panel to check for delayed hypersensitivity reactions which would cause pain and inflammation in the body,” Bonnie explains.

“Then we might do things to help you with nutrients that can be beneficial and replenish good flora in the gut to help repair it. Vitamin D is very important for autoimmune tendencies. It decreases the inflammatory process that’s heightened in autoimmune disorders.” And in some cases, simply eliminating an aggravating food substance has relieved long-term chronic pain and other issues.”

Bonnie adds, “We try to figure out which systems are out of balance, and use the least-force intervention to create change.

With licensure, which naturopaths can obtain in certain states, we can prescribe pharmaceuticals if needed. I think a majority of things can be treated naturally, but there’s a time and a place for conventional interventions, such as treating a kidney infection. But if it were a urinary tract infection, I would treat it with high dose herbs.”

“I think at any age we should feel vibrant, energetic, not have a lot of pain, and be able to do the things we want to do. So that’s my focus when I work on people,” Bonnie declares. “And I also do acupuncture based on traditional Chinese principles to support the systems that are out of balance. Acupuncture is probably best known for pain management as it helps release endorphins, helping people to feel relaxed and handle pain better. It can also be really helpful for digestive issues, blood sugar levels, and other health issues.”

Bonnie always wanted to go into natural health,

and based on what she knew of such careers when in high school, she thought she’d become a chiropractor or physical therapist. “I was very into exercise therapy and diet,” Bonnie explains. “While working on my pre-med degree at Northern Michigan University in the ’90s, I met Vicki Lockwood and learned homeopathy from her. That opened the door to herbs and other dietary things. Then I came across some info on naturopathic medicine and I realized this was it!”

“With naturopathic medicine, we’re always trying to get to the root cause, not just treat symptoms, and use the least-force intervention to create change,” describes Bonnie. “So we work with diet and lifestyle, vitamins, minerals, and botanicals before any kind of pharmaceutical intervention.”

Bonnie also notes acupuncture may offer immediate results for pain relief, hormone regulation, and elimination of allergy symptoms with even one or a few treatments. “Some naturopathic practices can take a couple of weeks or months before showing results. Acupuncture can be a great tool for immediate and also long-standing results.” she explains.

“I just love seeing people take charge of their own health. I want people to feel empowered,” Bonnie enthuses. “We can feel good for the rest of our lives if we take good care of ourselves. That’s what I love.”

Excerpted with permission from the Fall 2020 issue of Health & Happiness U.P. Magazine. Copyright 2020, Empowering Lightworks, LLC. All rights reserved.

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Positive Parenting: How to Raise Empowered Women, Danielle Drake-Flam and Cynthia Drake

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There is no one right way to raise a daughter—everyone is so wildly different with varying beliefs that are bound to affect their child-rearing. However, parents can find common ground on one factor: making sure their daughters know they’re important and loved.

Danielle: My mom instilled many great practices in me—expressing gratitude, being kind to everyone, the power of communication—but perhaps her greatest mantra was her constant reminder that my voice mattered.

Below are a few aspects we’ve found to be helpful in raising empowered women through our mother/daughter relationship:

The Power of Choice
Danielle: Growing up, my mom made me feel I was in charge of my own destiny. She was never one to ask me what my grades were in school, and she didn’t push me to be number one. She made me feel as if I had a choice. Because I was allowed to function so independently, and given the space to think on my own, I didn’t want to disappoint her.

If a difficult situation would arise, she would talk through it with me, and we would lay all the options out on the table. But, ultimately, it was up to me to decide what I was going to do.

Cynthia: Know you are a vessel for life but your daughters are not an extension of you and your life. They are their own beings, and you are there to nurture them and let them grow into themselves fully. The process of raising daughters is a gradual growth into trust—trusting they are growing into themselves as they make their own mistakes and have their own adventures in the world. You can be there to help pick up the pieces, give a bit of time-tested wisdom, and allow in the excitement of discovery through their eyes.

Respecting Boundaries
Cynthia: Be present to your daughters fully and also allow them to have space to learn and grow into healthy boundaries. Notice who they are and foster opportunities for them to explore themselves and their interests. Be a cheerleader, but also a silent observer. Learn when to be which.

Make sure you have your own interests and life beyond being a parent. Let your daughters know about who you truly are as a full person with a life of your own. This gives them a model for themselves to also be a full person in the world.

Teaching How to Stand Up for Yourself
Danielle: Too often women are expected to roll with the punches—sit back and be quiet, we are often told from a young age. However, when someone says something rude or makes us uncomfortable, we need to hold each other accountable to speak up. I’ve learned this quiet self-respect only after years of practice, and constant reminders from my mom. Having watched her stand up for herself both professionally and in personal situations, I see what a positive effect it has had on my life. Now that I know my own self-worth, I find myself speaking out against injustices, and not just those committed against me.

Being Open to Having Honest and Real Conversations
Cynthia: Hold your daughters accountable for what happens; don’t bail them out. However, you can also be a soft place to land for discussion and decisions on what to do next time, and how to make amends for this time. Let them out into the world to test who they are and discover their own boundaries. Give them a strong foundation of truth to stand in. Then let things roll. Be ready to trust them to learn and grow again.

Expressing Gratitude
Cynthia: The practice of gratitude is just as important as being honest with one another. Take the time to appreciate your daughter and tell her why you’re grateful for her. This can be in the form of small notes (Danielle: My mom likes to leave little ‘thank you’ cards around the house) or just a simple ‘thanks’ when you notice she’s done something nice.

Relating Hardships
Cynthia: Allow your daughters to see you as a real person with emotions, someone who makes mistakes and who is fully, vulnerably human. Let them in, but don’t make them responsible for holding you up. Know you will scar them in some way no matter what because we are all out of balance with ourselves and the world from time to time. Let them hear “I’m sorry” from you here and there, and talk through why.

If you are divorced, try to co-parent well, allowing the traumas and dramas of your adult world to stay between you and your ex. Let your daughters know they are the product of two people who came together for good reason for the time you were meant to be together, and that life does not guarantee “happily ever after,” but it does guarantee you can stay strong, resilient, and even loving, through turmoil and pain. Let them know that love for the time it was meant to be is good enough. Show them that being a woman who is single is enough, and relationships do not define who we are, but may challenge us to grow into the best parts of ourselves.

Encouraging Growth Through Education and Pursuing Passions
Cynthia: Valuing and respecting your daughters by allowing them to show the way toward what draws them is important. Then support them with enthusiasm and helpful mentors and teachers to assist them in reaching toward their own light through their passions. Make sure they contribute financially too, if possible, so they come to understand the importance of personal investment by earning their own way.

In Summary
Raising an empowered daughter is like allowing a tree to take root and grow. You are the fertile ground upon which she stands and firmly roots herself. All the while, she reaches her arms toward the sky and leans into the winds of life, knowing the ground is always beneath her no matter what.

Danielle Drake-Flam is a recent graduate of Washington University in St. Louis. She was born and raised in Houghton, Michigan. Currently, she works as a freelancer for Footwear News in L.A., and as the Director of Journalism for the pro-bono consulting initiative Rem and Company.

Cynthia Drake is blessed to be mother to three strong, courageous, unique daughters. She’s a community builder, encouraging people to find their deepest potential via her life’s work: raising daughters, as a transition coach, grief counselor, Quaker youth leader, and living as a full human being. 

Excerpted with permission from the Fall 2020 issue of Health & Happiness U.P. Magazine. Copyright 2020, Empowering Lightworks, LLC. All rights reserved.

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