When I got about reading Early Morning Coffee & Donuts by Paula Youmell, I was genuinely skeptical, first saw it as a labour of love for fellow authors. You know in my fondest dreams I used to imagine myself as an author.
Now I don’t know anything about donuts and coffee. I love drinking coffee, the processed stuff, but donuts?
I am not into Food or things like that, the reason is simple, I live in a part of the world where such things as donuts and coffee look exotic. Trusting Christine on this I opened the first page and started reading. I must sound a note of warning here.
Authors are required to write on what they know, Paula scored that, however, if I stayed with the title, I would drop the book. So it might be something worth considering when you pick a title that sends a picture of being a cookery book.
Maybe authors should consider a chat with the publisher. This book on a bookshelf in my world will go unnoticed except for the very curious and yes truly is the coffee and donuts of life. Coffee and Donuts is really a handbook that gets you through the day in a wholesome way.
I enjoyed myself, and like the author says it is a book you want to read as you get ready for the day.
I found myself smiling especially when she insisted I was responsible for my experiences; I love that. She made me believe in her comments, was honest and believable particularly when she talked about her fixation with weight and food. I learned I could forgive myself.
That was a cool feeling, to shrug off the burden of guilt and truly accept me, warts and all. Yeah, I could sleep on the darn bed unmade!
Let us have a chat with the author.
Please tell us a bit about yourself.
I am a Registered Nurse, Health and Physical Education Teacher, and a Holistic Healer. I have studied whole food nutrition and natural healing for 28 years. I support others on their path to healing their bodies by working in rhythm with nature.
Well, I got my peeve out of the way, will you like to let us know why you called it coffee and donuts?
At the very beginning of the book, I explain how people like things, foods that bring back fond memories and create comfort for themselves. Coffee is a morning ritual that is comforting to many, many people around the globe. Donuts, as I wrote at the beginning of the book, are a fond memory for me.
My Sisters and I made many a donut with our Gram. People, in the USA, put coffee and donuts together every morning as breakfast food. The two paired together, seemed like a heart-warming title for morning inspirations; much like the morning cup of coffee and a donut.
From my spiritual background, I am taught not to see the human being as a divine being, and I find that a hard chew for me, will it matter if a portion of your potential readers thinks like me?
Maybe, maybe not. My life experiences have taught me that the divine, “God-Goddess,” is part of us all, that we were made in the likeness of “God-Goddess;” that our soul is a part of the collective soul, the divine energy of the universe.
Your novel, Numen Yeye, speaks of a Goddess, Priestess. You speak of being a one God-centered faith person but also how “man’s search for identity… every human being has the responsibility to have a luminous goal and try to reach it. It is not an issue of religion.”
I too believe healing and spiritual beliefs are not an issue of religion. I think whatever a person’s spiritual beliefs, we can all do deep soul-searching to heal ourselves. (I look forward to reading this novel of yours. Yes, I just ordered it.)
Your book presumes that I have read your first book that left gaps because it segregated from truly relaxing as it indicated I need to have read book one. Was that a deliberate sales style?
No, not a deliberate sales pitch. So many reviews of books on Amazon complain that a subsequent book by the same author was a waste of money as half or more of the information was the same as a previous book. I did not want to repeat information for my readers.
I like your comment, ”healing is a journey” and like you stated human beings find that difficult. Why do we have it so difficult to start on that journey?
I believe for each person there are different factors that hold them back but that all stem from the fear of change, the fear of stepping out of their comfort zone into the unknown and the unknown consequences of this action of change.
Let’s go to Nepal, two basic contrasts, the four-month-old baby and the 102-year-old man, the dramatic similarity is that they are survivors of the earthquake, there is a lot of symbolism in that happening. People were affected by that happening, how do we learn to be healed, mind, soul?
Natural disasters open a whole different world of suffering. As humans, we cannot control what natural weather patterns (obviously human’s modern industrialized existence is having major impacts on our weather system) and earth shifts bring to our daily life.
I think any natural phenomena that have the power to take our loved ones and neighbors from our daily existence is a deep form of acceptance, recognizing we cannot control everything that happens to us and in our lives. Perhaps this is what the Buddha meant by letting go of our attachments to things.
Please explain to us from this side of the pond, whole foods, and our perception that civilization means eating the kind of people (food?) Western people eat. Our main diet is more often carbo-heavy?
Whole foods are foods that are minimally processed, cooking and cutting up food is processing and nothing is removed from the original food, and nothing has been added in.
For example, refined flour takes the whole grain and polishes off the bran and germ (removing parts of the original whole). This leaves the grain’s endosperm only to be ground into flour. You have lost the fiber source (bran), the fat-soluble nutrients (germ), and many minerals and nutrients. On the adding in side of things, let’s take a look at most commercial yogurt. Yogurt is simply cultured milk. Commercial yogurt adds thickeners, stabilizers, refined sugars, and in some cases (cheap brand names) artificial flavors.
Are your Carb-heavy diets from whole food carbohydrates; not the refined, packaged food carbohydrates of American culture?
How would you want your book to be assimilated by the average African who has lived all his life on the continent?
This is an interesting question as books definitely have an audience range. I do not have any preconceived notions that my book will appeal to all audiences from all walks of life. Industrialized nations, whose people have pulled themselves away from the flow and rhythm of natural living, need to be reminded that we are all a part of nature, all a part of the web of life.
Please explain what you mean by holistic healing, do you accept herbs and the use of incantations in place of yoga?
Holistic Healing means using natural means to re-balance the body’s health: herbs, whole foods, energy healing, daily movement, natural lifestyle choices, etc.
Do you write only on healing, will you accept clients from Africa? Do you have a regular clinic and is it very expensive?
I would accept any client who wants to work with me if we both agree that my support services are a good fit for the person needing support. I also need to feel comfortable in my ability to help the person. If I think someone else might be better suited, have more knowledge and experience with their challenges, I would not hesitate to refer them to someone else.
I have regular office hours, and I do not believe I am expensive. An initial consult is $175 and a person is hiring me for at least 8 hours of my time to review their health history, start a map of their healing plan, meet with them for 2-3 hours, then I do a thorough email follow up with suggested lifestyle changes and healing additions to their lives and answer email questions for 2 full weeks.
Share a typical day with us.
Up by 6 AM getting the day rolling, breakfast and lunches made for my kids.
I drive them to school by 8:15 and return home to:
- Do laundry, clean house, get in a bit of yoga, etc.
- Review client charts and see clients.
- Write books, blog posts, articles for magazines, etc.
- Create and market online courses.
- Pick my kids up at 2 PM.
- Walk my dog.
- Make dinner, do the dishes, and finish up any business work.
- Bed by 9:30, read, lights out by 10 PM or so.
It is a fun life!
What is next after coffee and donuts?
Ten years ago I started a book about working with kids around whole foods, health, and healing. It was a homeschool project with my two sons. I would like to finish this book. I also have ideas for 5 or 6 more books. It is a matter of having the time to write.
Thank you very much for being part of this discussion.
Thanks so much for the opportunity to share my work and passions with your readers.
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