She seems to have it all…sports broadcasting talent, star-power and a beautiful, loving family. She does…but it wasn’t always easy…especially when it came to building a family. Multi-Award winning sports journalist, Michele Tafoya, is a side-line reporter for Sunday Night Football and the only three-time winner of the Sports Emmy for Outstanding Sports Personality. A versatile talent, she’s covered a wide range of sports from the Super Bowl to Olympic swimming as well as NCAA basketball and so much more. On top of her stellar career record, she has a reputation for being kind-hearted, authentic and a Minnesota lover and I’m thrilled to have her on the first season of Happiness through Hardship – The Podcast.
My husband has been telling me for years…YOU HAVE TO LAUNCH A PODCAST. I’m a storyteller, an information seeker and authentically want to help make the world a little better. I’m also not afraid of a microphone, so a podcast launch seemed natural. We got to work and decided the launch would be on the 6th anniversary of Pretty Wellness.
The anniversary of Pretty Wellness was April 2nd, but since everyone’s world has been turned upside down with COVID-19, we chose to delay the podcast launch. Though my message with Happiness through Hardship – The Podcast is about finding a little joy during life’s journey, whatever that might bring, I needed a pause. I also wasn’t sure how a new podcast with hardship would be received during crisis. So, today – being the day that my home state and many others re-open to a new-normal, felt like a good time to celebrate…and so I’m excited to share the podcast launch with you. Our first episode is all about celebrations – I talk to Jelena Aleksich of The Confetti Project on how confetti helped her heal during her dad’s passing.
Figuring out a new-normal isn’t easy. Like any new habit, it takes time and small steps to make progress in every area of life – even the pantry. After my stage IV cancer diagnosis, life never returned to the way it was…however, I figured out my new normal and have embraced it living a great quality of life. As a recovering junk-a-holic, my pantry used to be filled with meals like Chef-Boy-R-Dee ravioli, ramen noodles and high-sodium canned chili. The past six years I’ve maintained a plant-based diet focusing mainly on fresh or frozen vegetables and fruits. So, the past few weeks living in quarantine with less access to fresh foods challenged me to find new healthy pantry items that could keep me full and healthy. Here is what’s in my pantry now and read below about how you can access your own free healthy pantry checklist.
A child of the 1980s and 1990s, I was a huge Laura Ingalls Wilder fan. I read all the “Little House” books and caught every episode of the simple life of living on the prairie in the late 1800’s. The idea of working in the kitchen or fields during the day and singing by the fireplace at night warmed my heart. By no means, can I now compare a pioneer life without electricity to our techno-centric world with “social distancing” during the COVID-19 pandemic. Yet, somehow I’ve found a calm in preparing simple foods in the kitchen, like the Ingalls’, for our family dinner around the table. We don’t have a garden and we’re hibernating due to my compromised immunity, so our grocery deliveries are minimal. I’ve had to focus on a few simple foods and ingredients that I have in bulk and here is how I’m doing it.
My favorite fruit and veggies as a kid were green apple Jolly Ranchers and the infamous steakhouse bloomin’ (fried) onion. As I grew older, I walked away from candy and fried foods, thinking I was eating healthy with my bag of Baked Lays and fruit infused frozen yogurts. It wasn’t until my wake up call with stage IV disease that everything in my diet changed. Truth be told, it wasn’t just my diet that shifted, it was my mindset about the food we eat and how nutrient dense food was important for my survival.
Are you in a book club now? Do you read the book and analyze with friends or show up just ready to have fun and possibly learn something? I’ve been in a number of book clubs throughout the years with different directions.
A Culture Club – No Boy George, just a bunch of fun neighbors sharing our interests together and having fun!
A Wine Club with a Book – Need I say more? Not many conversations about the book, yet still a blast.
Reading Night Out Club – Book reading mandatory. Questions outlined beforehand. Always left informed.
All of the above can be fun and inspirational. Just like picking friends, we have to pick the right book club that fits our wants/needs. I’ve always been more of non-fiction reader and for some reason always wanted a non-fiction book club. So here I am – inviting YOU to join this virtual wellness book club – a BOOK-ish Club.