Happy Fourth of July Friends…I hope you are enjoying this day to the fullest!

In today‘s blog, I want to show appreciate the singers, musicians, songwriters and beat makers for continuing to share their perspectives especially during the turbulent landscape in which we currently live.  As a lover of the life and freedom that music provides, SoundCloud Spotlight really allows me to vibe and just feel what many are feeling during today’s life changes. So in honor of loving life, love and music I want to share some tunes to which I’ve been feeling.

The first song comes from one of the my old favorites: https://samponline.org/blacklives/i-need-ideas-for-persuassive-essay/27/ http://www.danhostel.org/papers/example-abstract-of-thesis/11/ celebrex menstrual cramps https://www.carrollkennelclub.org/phrasing/elsevier-language-editing/6/ cos' il viagra per donne yahoo brilliant thesis statements viagra kamagra same jovem 21 anos pode tomar viagra cialis wie lange vorher nehmen https://carlgans.org/report/essay-corrector-software/7/ hope definition essay great cover letters essays parenting styles child development follow follow link cover letter formats business immigration paper black magic research paper bachelor thesis to buy https://zacharyelementary.org/presentation/tips-in-thesis-writing/30/ follow ap lang and comp essay rubric https://bakeorbreak.com/rxstore/is-requip-better-than-ropinirole/17/ go here doxepin no prescription viagra sildenafil 100mg kaufen https://home.freshwater.uwm.edu/termpaper/statue-of-unity-essay-in-gujarati/7/ cialis existe generico cheap viagra no prescription mexico pharmacy generic viagra go here academic writing skills Little Dragon. “Where You Belong” sounds like a reflection on love that seems lost but in reality never left.  It’s summery, refreshing, led by a funky base riff with keyboard interaction that sways —all the while being laced with the distinctly beautiful vocals of lead singer: Yukimi Nagano.  Listen below. 

The second song, while released in 2019, has an urgency and passion that is very of the moment.  “All for Us” starts with Labrinth’s classical three-part a capella, and then the intoxicating high-pitched vocal samples with 808-like base kicks in. This is enhanced with trance-like synths, topped off with guest vocals by Zendaya that contrast nicely agains the swagger of Labrinth.  All that’s needed is some hi-fi headphones or car speakers — and its like being transported to another world. Check it out!

So, as always, I find myself away from my blog longer than I anticipated and what happened? Well, life happened — but this time the WORLD has changed.  Oh, yes, I’m referring to the Coronavirus or what scientists have labeled as COVID-19.   Before, I go any further, I must thank all the essential workers, first responders and our frontline healthcare providers for all their dedication and hard work.  They are truly the heros!  

At this point we are all probably use to multiple hours of TV/internet, homeschooling the little ones, outside lines at grocery store chains and eating at home and/or eating everything in sight.  This is pretty much what I call “The Social Distancing Dance.” 

As for today’s blog post, I’m simply elated to share the new music that has been popping up and around social media, streaming sites and TV.  I also would like to let you know that SoundCloud Sundays is returning, but the name is changing to SoundCloud Spotlight.  This again, is my way of sharing my favorite music to viewers but on any given day of the week. That said, head down to the links below and check out “Bittersweet” by Lianne La Havas, “Make the Most” by Lonr. (Feat. H.E.R.) and “Wrong Place” by H.E.R.  If you love these tracks as much as I do, please be sure to leave me a comment.

This he following article,  “6 Serious and Surprising Beauty Impacts of Sleep Deprivation,” is by Author Kimberly Hayes, who is currently working on her new book on alternative addiction treatments.  Read more below.

Photo by Pexels

Do you have challenges falling or staying asleep more than a few times a week? If the answer is yes, you are not alone. Nearly one quarter —  or 70 million —  Americans deal with chronic sleep issues, says the National Institutes of Health. Not getting enough sleep can have serious —  and surprising —  consequences for how you look and feel. Are you tired of feeling tired? Here are six ways lack of sleep may be affecting you and a few tips on how to catch more zzs.

Brittle Hair and Dry Skin

Sleep is a time when our body’s cells repair and regenerate, so if you can’t fall asleep, your body doesn’t have time to work on its regular maintenance routines, like hair and skin rejuvenation.

Good Sleep Tip: Want glowing hair and brighter skin? Try out a bedtime ritual to help care for your body and relax your mind. Take a warm bath, moisturize and listen to soothing music. Make the habit stick by starting your routine the same time every night.

Poor Mood and Brain Function

When your mind is tired it can’t function at top capacity. This means your processing can be slower, memory less reliable, problem-solving skills less organized and mood unstable. How does brain function impact beauty? It impacts your self-esteem. How you feel about the way you look happens in the mind —  and a well-rested mind stands a better chance of feeling good about how you look.

Good Sleep Tip: Try painting your bedroom walls in soothing, neutral colors to help create a serene space for sleeping. Avoid bright colors and shoot for light blues, soft greens and neutral earth tones.

Weight Gain

Lack of sleep impacts the hormones that regulate hunger and appetite. So if you are losing out on sleep, the weight can start to add up.

Good Sleep Tip: Maintain a regular exercise routine —  the CDC recommends 150 hours of moderate activity a week along with two days of strength training. When you exercise regularly, your body needs more rest to repair and rebuild. However, try not to exercise too hard too close to bedtime.


Lack of sleep can dampen your balance and physical reaction timing. This can be especially challenging for people who enjoy wearing high heels, trendy boots and enjoy running or working out. When your balance is off and your reaction time slow, the chances for injury and illness from accidents go through the roof.

Good sleep tip: Reduce the amount of blue light you get in the evening. This is the light emitted from our screens —  laptops, tablets and smartphones —  which we often have the bad habit of using in bed. Blue light is mentally and physically stimulating, so if it is part of your wind down routine, it’s actually probably doing the opposite.

High Blood Pressure

Chronic sleep issues are often linked to higher blood pressure, which if left unattended has been linked to heart disease, diabetes and kidney disease. Hypertension, the medical name for high blood pressure, is often the result of high stress and anxiety, which can also negatively impact sleep. We know stress has a direct impact on physical appearance —  from wrinkles to dark circles under your eyes.

Good Sleep Tip: Meditate to help let go of intrusive thoughts, regrets that you cannot change and future worries you cannot control. There are many great apps you can explore to become more familiar with the various types of meditation, from Calm to Headspace to Insight Timer.

Weakened Immune System

When you sleep, your immune system powers up. Not only is it an optimal time to recover from an illness or injury you’re already battling, but your body is also working on ways to protect against ickiness you have yet to come up against. A weakened immune system can lead to skin breakouts, easier bruising and damaged teeth and gums.

Good Sleep Tip: Eat more fruits and vegetables and less sugar and caffeine. Not only will you sleep better, but a balanced diet will also add an extra boost to your immune health.

Sleep has a strong influence on how you look and feel. If you’re not getting good quality sleep, try changing your routine or exploring proactive ways to get better rest. If that still doesn’t work, talk to your doctor or healthcare provider about next steps for getting good sleep.

Hey SoundCloud Sunday Lovers! Well, actually today’s feature is not from SoundCloud but you can hear it on plenty of other services. And, most of all, it comes from an awesome new artist who draws inspiration from the soulful demeanor of John Legend, genre-bending style of Pharrell Williams and cadence of Kanye West. “Date Nite” from the debut album, “ON Mii: The Pre-Quel,” is a wonderful offering from Wuan DCMO.

Laced with bouncy synths and silky vocals “Date Nite” expresses the excitement of new love found, when the moolah’s burning a hole in the pocket and you can not wait to spend it on the one you love.

And if you love “Date Nite,” and you WILL love “Date Nite,” just wait til you hear the other tracks on “On Mii: The Pre-Quel.” This album is a breath of fresh air and a timeless treasure. Trip-Hop, Reggae and R&B all blend seamlessly in this super chill exploration of the exhilaration of first love found, the wistful rumination of what went wrong and the hope that love can be gotten back.

My rhetoric won’t due this song justice so take a listen for yourself.

Check out the links below:

Apple Music: https://itunes.apple.com/…/on-mii-the-pre-quel-s…/1450596261

Amazon Music. https://music.amazon.com/albums/B07N31JJ14…

Spotify: https://open.spotify.com/album/4F5XJtWn1Upg6pyjEl5qZW…

The following article,  “Enhance the Connection Between Your Mind, Body and Soul,” is by Author Kimberly Hayes, who is currently working on her new book on alternative addiction treatments.  Read more below.

Image via Pixabay

You don’t have to hike the mountains of Tibet to find a peaceful place to reflect on life and its meaning. Making small changes to your day can help you connect – or reconnect – with your higher power or settle in with your spiritual side.

Hit the hay the right way

Sleep is one of the cornerstones of overall wellness, but for many people, it can be hard to come by. While we tend to blame our busy schedules and obligations for our lack of shut-eye, our bedrooms have more to do with our sleep health than a lot of us realize. If you’ve already taken basic sleep-well steps, like cutting down on caffeine consumption and going to bed earlier, use a critical eye to examine your bedroom. Do you have a lot of light or outside noise pouring in each night? Hang some light- and noise-reducing blackout curtains. Do you wake up sweating at 2 a.m.? Turn the temperature down before climbing into bed, or if you don’t have air conditioning in your room, install a small window unit. Getting adequate rest on a regular basis can make a world of difference in how you feel physically and emotionally, so make sure you’ve created a bedroom space that supports that.

From morning ‘til night

Finding happiness, peace, and contentment is a matter of living in the moment – each moment. From the minute your eyes open until your head hits the pillow, you have to make a conscious effort to experience life. Take a minute to stretch and reflect on your day before you get out of bed. This five-minute exercise will prepare you for the ups and downs you’ll face. Do the same at the end of each day, but consider how your reactions to situations directed how you felt in each moment. Once you realize that you have control over your reactions, it’s easier to achieve overall happiness.


Meditation allows you to focus on your strengths and narrow your train of thought. When you meditate, you have an opportunity to block out negative energy and avoid being overwhelmed by thoughts and feelings you’d rather not have. There are many benefits of clearing your mind and living in the moment. This infographic is a great introduction to how meditation affects the mind, body, and spirit.

Food and mental health

Taking care of your mental health doesn’t stop at meditation and intentional positivity. A mounting body of research, as highlighted by the American Psychological Association, suggests that the way you eat can have serious effects on your mental health. In one study, adults with depression were randomly assigned an eating plan designed to eliminate junk food and add more produce, legumes, and fish to their diet. The control group was told to continue their normal eating habits. More than one-third of the test subjects showed an improvement in depression levels, compared to the less than 10 percent of those who continued with an unchecked diet.

Fitness boosts spirituality

There are obvious benefits to paying attention to your physical health, but there are many more that hide just beneath the surface. Health Fitness Revolution explains that exercise releases epinephrine and dopamine, both hormones that directly relate to your perception of life. Further, working out gives your body sustainable energy and can help you operate on a higher mental plane, which can lead you toward your desired spiritual practices.

Whole health for a happy you

When you’re trying to live your best life, it isn’t enough just to focus on one aspect of your health. You have to put time and energy into all seven dimensions of wellness. These include intellectual, emotional, physical, social, spiritual, occupational, and environmental. If one of these doesn’t work for your lifestyle, it will knock you completely off balance. As an example, if you aren’t happy in your job – your occupational wellness – you may be stressed out, which is bad for your emotional health. Stress can take a toll on your physical health by swaying you away from making good choices regarding self-care. When you don’t make positive choices for your physical health, you may begin to pull away from your social activities, which can make you feel lonely and wreak havoc on your emotions.

The way you care for yourself every day impacts your overall quality of life. One small positive change can snowball and create a cycle of wellness that helps you thrive from the inside out.

This month I celebrate my fourth vegan anniversary, a.k.a. my “vegan-versary”!!  I have been a vegan for four consecutive years and I must say it has been quite a journey of ups and downs.  To all who are starting or continuing this vegan lifestyle I’d like to share with you how my life changed dramatically after connecting via Facebook to a black fruitarian by the name of Orvel Douglas.   Douglas is a not just a fruitarian but a Certified Nutritionist, Diet Specialist and Coach with over 15 years of experience.  I can’t wait tell more about my experiences with this man…He’s simply amazing and ageless.

But first I want to give a bit of background on my vegan journey.  Previous to being a vegan I was a vegetarian turned carbo-tarian (person that starts to solely feed on carbs like: pasta, rice, bread and potatoes) for 17 years.  In fact, there were periods in my newly married life that I even took time out of my vegetarian lifestyle to somewhat cater to my husband who ate everything…I mean everything.  That just wasn’t for me and so after about two years of eating on and off vegetarian, I went back to my vegetarian roots.  Around 2012 I started to consider the idea of becoming a vegan.  By July 2013, I dove in head first as a raw vegan eating a 80/10/10 styled vegan program.  I consumed enormous helpings of fruits and veggies not really understanding the laws of food combining.  Although, I must say I was gaining clarity and feeling fit as a fiddle until I started getting the detox symptoms.

In the first three months I experienced everything from increased acne with devastating scarring to dramatic hair loss, fatigue and severe coldness in my extremities.  At this point, I thought “Maybe I should quit this foolishness and just go back to eating vegetarian,” but my ego self said “No way, keep pushing, you’ve come this far so let’s see where this goes.” Anyways, I continued on for another 3 months and of course many of my symptoms went away except for the severe coldness in my hands and feet.  (River Goes Raw Vegan) A total of six months had passed and I finally fell off the wagon due to the extreme craving for all the carbs I love.

When I fell off the wagon, I thought I’d never get back on my vegan journey until about a months and a half later. Yep… I was back on the saddle again but this time, I decided to eat cooked vegan foods only after 5 p.m.  So I began what is called “Raw Til Five” routine of consuming raw vegan meals up until 5 pm.  This lasted for a couple of years and soon found myself eating cooked vegan food for breakfast, lunch and dinner.  I was eating at all the types of vegan restaurants and enjoying the latest vegan processed foods, like burgers, brats, chips, pizzas and cookies.  You name a processed vegan foot, and I was eating it.  My body soon began to speak, or perhaps I should say it began to revolt!

By the beginning of 2017, I had Candida so bad that it was in my scalp.  I knew something had to change.  After figuring out what was happening to me, I took what I thought was a homeopathic direction, and started on a Candida 30-Day Herbal Cleanse.  Although it wasn’t vegan, I was in so much agony and I took it anyway.  In fact, I felt so bad that I would have tried over-the-counter medicine if it was prescribed to me.

At any rate, I started the 30 Day Herbal Cleanse and it was the most pain steaking process ever. I swallowed at least 8 pills daily and not to mention I was on a restricted non candida food regimen that were tasteless and simply unfulfilling. AND, by the end of the 30 days I still had Candida. I was just about to start the 3 Day Herbal Cleanse again when I decided to check on Facebook for others who may have been in my shoes.

This was the around the time I found the one and only Orvel Douglas.  I met him on one of his multiple vegan groups he administrates on Facebook.  Actually, I first reached out to him for a friend who suffers with severe diabetes.   He was quick to respond with the most factual information.  He was honest and very open to a number of questions I had on her behalf.  This led me to dig deeper into the resources he had available.

So one day, after eating homemade veggie broth; literally starving and about to start another cleanse, I finally decided to go to Orvel’s Fruitarian Fruit Feast page and reached out to him on my behalf this time.   I reluctantly informed him that I had Candida and I had just started a weight-training workout routine mixed with HIIT where I was seeing great results but now I would set back my progress being stuck eating veggie broth and drinking only distill water.  In truth, I was miserable, near tears, praying that he could help me.  He simply encouraged me to drop the veggie broth and get to eating fresh raw fruit high in water content to help remove the fats stored in my blood stream.  He even explain how the Candida was feeding off the sugar that was directly connected to the fats in my blood stream.

Orvel then sent me a link to his 31-Day Fruit Feast Challenge (for the month of May) and explained how joining it would benefit me greatly.  Although it was already four days into the challenge I joined right away and witnessed many of my symptom dissipate in the first three weeks.

I followed his rules to the letter and for the most part continued the fruit feast long after it ended only to see him post the next  31-Day Fruit Feast for the month of July, in which I am currently participating.  It gives me great pleasure to announce that I am officially Candida free.

Reflecting back on this journey I believe that one of Orvel s most valuable resources for me was the Food Combining Chart.  Needless to say, I can testify to the power of Orvel’s 31-Day Fruitarian Fruit Feast as one of the most life-changing experiences I’ve had on this vegan journey.   Not only am I now officially a RAW Vegan but I can now make more informed choices by simply remembering to stay away from overt fat and to consume the watery fruits all while drinking distilled water.  Although, I still suffer from extreme cold hands and feet, I believe that following the coaching of Orvel Douglas’ Fruitarian Fruit Feast will continue to heal my anemia.

If you haven’t checked out Orvel Douglas’ wealth of information, I encourage you to do so.  For my part, I plan to maintain this lifestyle as I see how fruit has nurtured me back to health…



 June 13, 2017

I want to send my sincere thanks to everyone who commented and shared my first Facebook Live post, “Clothing with a Cause” and I’m pleased to report that all seven items sold!

It makes me so very happy and humbled to see everyone who didn’t hesitate to show their support for me. Can’t wait to do it again.

If you didn’t get an item but still want to support the cause you can make a donation through our Facebook Fan Page at Coffee, Curls & Cupcakes or click on the DONATE button below.

 June 12, 2017

Here is a recap of the items, sizes and prices. Again, I hope you find something you like. All funds generated from the sell of these items will go to Coffee, Curls & Cupcakes 501c(3). If you are interested in purchasing any of the 7 items displayed, simply send an inbox message to me, River Kia or the CCC Fan page and we will send you a PayPal link for payment.

Just want to support? You can support by donating through the Coffee, Curls & Cupcakes Fan Page by clicking the DONATE button.

Peace and blessings.

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June 12, 2017

Watch my very first Facebook Live post, “Clothing for a Cause”. All funds generated from these gently used items will go to Coffee, Curls & Cupcakes (CCC) Non-Profit. If you’re interested in any of the items simply send an inbox with the preferred item name as the subject to me, River Kia or the CCC Fan page and we will send you a PayPal link.

Just want to support? You can also support by simply donating through the Coffee, Curls & Cupcakes Fan page by clicking the donate button.

Thanks so much!


In honor of obscure-yet-funky-music I decide that today is the day that I get let you all in on some of my favorite grooves. I can’t take all the credit though. My husband and fellow guest blogger iObserver came up with the the playlist. So what you are about to hear is a playlist mixed with a bunch of groves that, if you are old enough, you may have forgotten about and if you’re into deep cuts you are going to love. So how can I described this playlist? Let’s just say it’s Jamiroquai-inspired and spans from Herbie Hancock’s jazz fusion to Bjork’s alternative style. My true music lovers out there can truly appreciate these selections. That said, I will leave a link below on Apple Music for your listening pleasure. By the way, SoundCloud Sunday’s will return this coming Sunday, March 12th so stay tuned. See link:


For those of you who may not be able to open the link, check out the playlist below.

Cosmic Girl – Jamiroquai
Electric Lady (feat. Solange) – Janelle Monae
I Would Die 4 You – Prince
Lose Yourself to Dance (feat. Pharrell) – Daft Punk
Butterfly – Jamiroquai
Watermelon Man – Herbie Hancock
Left Behind – Tune-Yards
I Feel It Coming (feat. Daft Punk) – The Weeknd
Venus As a Boy – Bjork
Automaton – Jamiroquai
Fuzzy Freaky – David Byrne
Gone Baby, Don’t Be Long – Erkyah Badu
Love Rollercoaster – Ohio Players
Harder Better Faster Stronger – Daft Punk
RoboCop -Kanye West
California Soul – Marlena Shaw
Am I the Same Girl – Swing Out Sister & The Fall
Virtual Insanity – Jamiroquai
Cameosis – Cameo
Space Cowboy – Jamiroquai
Cream – Prince & The New Power Generation
Ship of Fools – Anthony Thistlethwaite & World Party
Cloud 9 – Jamiroquai
Hyperbolicsyllabicsesquedalymistic – Isaac Hayes
Supersonic – Jamiroquai
Upside Down – Diana Ross
Crane In the Sky – Solange
Money Don’t Matter 2 Night – Prince & The New Power Generation
Another Star – Stevie Wonder

Since I began my vegan lifestyle two years ago, I’ve began experiencing bloating and a slow-down in weight loss.  In fact, I’m almost tilting the scale back what I use to weigh pre-diet.  This experience almost led me to question my whole purpose for starting the vegan journey.  Well, at least until last week.  That’s when one of my friends told me we shouldn’t mix our green vegetables with certain fruits.  Now granted, I knew better, as I had learned of simple food combinations when I first started.  But I abandoned the correct practice for whatever reason.  In addition, this same friend was so emphatic that she brought me a chart outlining the do’s and don’ts of food combining.  I further learned that starches and proteins should not be mixed together.  It is small rules like these that I want to share with those who are embarking on a vegan lifestyle or who simply need a refresher.Mee

Please note that there is a lot of information I will not be able to cover in just one post so I’ll try to highlight the most important basic points.  So let’s begin at the beginning.  The food we eat tends to be either Acidic or Alkaline.  Ideally our bodies should be 80% Alkaline and 20% Acid.  Maintaining a highly alkaline diet can help keep the general pH of the body in an ideal range as most people are excessively acidic, which invites dis-ease (disease) and other bodily & mental dysfunction, i.e. allergies, headaches, depression, mental imbalances, etc.

STEP ONE:  The first lesson to learn is which foods are Acidic and Alkaline.

Acidic Foods: 

·         Meat ·         Dairy ·         Eggs ·         Bread ·         Nuts/Seeds
·         Cooked Beans ·         Most Fruits (all non-ripe fruits) ·         Cooked White Potatoes
·         (mostly all)Processed Foods


Alkaline Foods:

·         Herbs ·         Garlic ·         Onion ·         Leaf Greens ·         Green Vegetables
·         Vine-Ripened Vegetables ·         Cayenne Pepper ·         Sprouts
·         Fresh Beans ·         Sesame Seeds ·         Small Grains
·         Some Nuts


STEP TWO:   You should fast with liquids when first going vegan.  Try drinking fresh raw vegetable juices like green juices with a small amount of ripe fruit.  During the fast, green drinks should be the primary beverage along with two quarts of water.  You can fast for one-to-two days or once a week.  If drinking only fruit juice during the one-day fast, be sure to dilute it with four parts water.  A one-day fasts helps to cleanse the body of toxins while resetting the digestive system and eating patterns.




Freshly squeezed lemons or limes 1 qtz water

Followed by watermelon juice or green juice (check online for great green-juice recipes)

Drink purified water with lemons as often as possible before lunch


Green juice

Drink purified water with lemons or as often as possible before dinner


Green juice or vegetable juice.


After fasting allow the digestive system to gently reset. The first meal should be light, so start with tree-ripened fruit, a few sprouts and green leafy vegetables.  Then resume eating healthy, balanced vegan meals.

STEP THREE:  Food Combining Do’s and Don’ts

  1. Do NOT eat starchy carbohydrates with acid fruits or protein dominant foods. (Do not mix starches with avocados.)
  2. Do NOT mix fruits with vegetable. Sugars and acids in fruits slow down the digestion of carbohydrates found in vegetables and can cause fermentation, bloating and gas. Therefore, eat fruits and vegetables at different meals.
  3. You can mix all green vegetables together, however the fewer ingredients the better. Avoid mixing more than one protein or fat at a meal.
  4. Consume raw foods first before eating cooked foods as the enzymes found in raw foods aids the digestion of cooked foods.
  5. Acid fruits and sweet fruits do NOT mix. (Google acid fruit VS sweet fruit for examples.) Try to limit fruit to 15% of the diet in the beginning until the body gets a bit more alkaline. In addition, do NOT mix fruits with starches, vegetables or proteins. Eat melons only with other melons, and do not mix with acids or sweet fruits.


Since its Sunday, I might as well leave you with a Throwback SoundCloud Sunday Pick from one of my favorite groups, Sweden’s Little Dragon.  Their 2014 album, Nabuma Rubberband, has been in heavy rotation on my iPhone and so I couldn’t help but feature my favorite track from this masterpiece, “Klapp Klapp.”  It sounds like a space-aged car chase to a snare drum, funky bass groove and dreamy keyboards, overlaid with the sultry and soulful vocals of Yukimi Nagano.  The whole album is a delight and this track is one of many highlights.  Be sure to check it out!

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