2011 Cornucopia of Thanks

cornucopia3Thank you for joining us and “sitting down” to the “WellnessCoach.com table” for our annual post of Thanks, Appreciation and Gratitude. Our 2011 Cornucopia contains a list of and links to the inspirational quotes, books, music, DVDs and resources that we appreciate for having touched our lives this year. We hope they’ll touch yours. Please enjoy the feast.



Inspirational Quotes of Thanks & Gratitude:

• “I would maintain that thanks are the highest form of thought; and that gratitude is happiness doubled by wonder.” ~G.K. Chesterton

• “To speak gratitude is courteous and pleasant, to enact gratitude is generous and noble, but to live gratitude is to touch Heaven.” ~J. Gaertner

• “Gratitude is a wonderful emotion. Appreciation is ten times better. Gratitude almost always points you toward the thing you’ve overcome. Appreciation aligns you with the Source within you. They are very different vibrations.” ~Abraham; Abraham-Hicks workshop

Blogs, Posts, Presentations & Websites:

Tim Miles’ site, http://www.TheDailyBlur.com especially his quotes of gratitude: http://www.thedailyblur.com/quotes-of-gratitude/

Gail Lynne Goodwin’s site: http://www.InspireMeToday

• (From Gail’s site above) Lisa Cypers Kamen’s 11/11/11 post: Harvesting Happiness: Getting Yourself Unstuck to Find Your Happiness

Evita Ochel’s website and her presentation on Natural Health and Nutrition at: http://www.evitaochel.com/#services

Books, Music and DVD’s:

happythankyou1• DVD: HappyThankYouMorePlease So uplifting! What a practice to say “thank you, more please”…we love it. If you rent this movie the first time you watch it, we just bet you’ll do what we did and go buy a copy to watch again and again:)

i-am-grateful1• Book: I Am Grateful: Recipes and Lifestyle of Cafe Gratitude The owners of Cafe Gratitude have a wonderful relationship to the sacred acts of both preparing and eating organic, raw food. Even if, like us, you appreciate eating organic food but you aren’t vegan, you might want to try making the “I Am Creative Pumpkin Pie” recipe this holiday season. Yum:)

dalai-lama1• Book: The Art of Happiness, 10th Anniversary Edition:
A Handbook for Living
We featured this in our free Toolkit’s 2011 Wellness Coach’s eCalendar this last year because of the beauty of the Dalai Lama’s message – “…happiness is the purpose of life.” Re-reading it again this year, we appreciated it even more…we think you’ll appreciate it also.

• Music: Never Be Daunted is a fabulous song by Jaymay (from her album Long Walk to Never). We first discovered it in the soundtrack of the movie HappyThankYouMorePlease (listed above) and then went out and bought the single from itunes. We love the lyrics that ask, “…what are you so afraid of?” and appreciate Jaymay’s reminder to “never be daunted.” You can find the entire album in the itunes store.

TOP 10 INSPIRATIONAL BOOKS IN 2008 and Free Teleclass: Part 3 in the Cornucopia Series

home-library.jpgI admit it – I’m as addicted to books as Carrie Bradshaw was to Monolo Blahnik shoes. I’ve usually got at least three books going at any one time, and a stack of new ones waiting in the wings. This is a good thing because books add greatly to my Well-Being.

For this 3rd and final post of the Cornucopia Series, I’m sharing the top 10 books that have inspired me in 2008. These are the books I’ll make a permanent part of my home library (in some cases they are already have been a part of my collection but I read them a second time this year and was re-inspired!) I’ll donate all the rest I’ve read this year, along with ten from years past, so I can still see the shelving☺

Hope you find something here you’ll want to add to your own collection. (I have no interest in linking you to my affiliate amazon account in this post. This is strictly an overview of my favorite 2008 books as a gift from me to you.)

Because you are busy with year-end tasks and may just want the “ top ten list”, I’ve placed it below (the books are listed in no particular order.) If you want to see what it is that I found inspiring, a detailed description for each book is in the blue box below the list.


1.    The Street of a Thousand Blossoms by Gail Tsukiyama

2.    Balancing Heaven and Earth – A Memoir of Visions, Dreams, and Realizations by Robert A. Johnson

3.    Merle’s Door – Lessons from a Freethinking Dog by Ted Kerasote

4.    The Millionaire Maker’s Guide to Creating a Cash Machine for Life by Loral Langemeier

5.    Money and the Law of Attraction: How to Attract Wealth, Health and Happiness by Esther and Jerry Hicks

6.    The Confidence Factor – Cosmic Gooses Lay Golden Eggs by Dr. Judith Briles

7.    A Master Class in Gremlin Taming: The Absolutely Indispensable Next Step for Freeing Yourself from the Monster of the Mind by Rick Carson

8.    The Answer: Grow Any Business, Achieve Financial Freedom, and Live an Extraordinary Life by John Assaraf

9.    Lottery by Patricia Wood

10.    What Got You Here Won’t Get You There by Marshall Goldsmith


1.    The Street of a Thousand Blossoms by Gail Tsukiyama

In a nutshell: Tsukiyama’s book explores life in Japan before, during and after WWII. The story follows two brothers through the tragedy of war and the difficulty of postwar reconstruction. The boys are orphaned and raised by their grandparents in Tokyo. One dreams of becoming a sumo champion, and the other finds he is passionate about the fine art of making Noh masks. Tsukiyama is gifted with her exploration of relationships, weaving history throughout, and crafting a novel that was lovely to read. It reinforces the idea that out of  hardship, new strength is born.

2.    Balancing Heaven and Earth – A Memoir of Visions, Dreams, and Realizations by Robert A. Johnson

In a nutshell: One of my all-time favorites found its way into my hands again this year. This memoir of Jungian Analyst, Robert A. Johnson has changed my life and each time I read it, I am deepened and changed again. By viewing Johnson’s life, dreams, and synchronicities there is no way to finish this book without your own soul being touched. I love the reminder Carl Jung once gave to Johnson, “…it is what you are that heals, not what you know.”

3.    Merle’s Door – Lessons from a Freethinking Dog by Ted Kerasote

In a nutshell: If you are not already a dog lover, you will be after just a few chapters of this book. Ted Kerasote is a prolific writer. His work has been in more than 50 periodicals, including National Geographic Traveler and the New York Times. This is the true story of Ted’s relationship with his dog Merle. The back cover says it best: “Their journey is part adventure, part love story, and part insightful explanation of how sharing leadership with your dog will make him a better best friend.” The inspiration to love and be loved deeply is woven throughout the book. Warning: Will cause tears…have plenty of tissues on hand.

4.    The Millionaire Maker’s Guide to Creating a Cash Machine for Life by Loral Langemeier

In a nutshell: Turn your skill set into a cash machine. Millionaire Maker® Loral Langemeier wrote her best book yet when she wrote this one. A no-nonsense master financial literacy coach, herself a self-made millionaire by age 35, and one of the most high-integrity people I know, Loral is a real pro. This book contains actual case studies, step-by-step plans of action, and powerful questions to make you dig deep and check on your own commitment level for entrepreneurial success. As a graduate of Loral’s programs myself, it was this book that inspired me to give back to the community and do some part-time coaching for LiveOutLoud™ each month.  The book is a must-read for all clients, though most read it many times, as I have also done.

5.    Money and the Law of Attraction: How to Attract Wealth, Health and Happiness by Esther and Jerry Hicks

In a nutshell: Don’t be fooled by the main title; pay attention to the subtitle instead. Esther and Jerry present the teachings of Abraham (you will learn more about this non-physical collection of energy and wisdom) in key Life areas. If your mouth isn’t hanging open at every new page, I’d be surprised. A free CD is included and its one you’ll listen to more than once. You’ll discover the power of creating a “new story” for yourself in the arenas of wealth, health, relationships and happiness. In doing so, you’ll change your world. Sits prominently in the resource section of my bookshelves.

6.    The Confidence Factor – Cosmic Gooses Lay Golden Eggs by Dr. Judith Briles

In a nutshell: This self-esteem-building book shows us the model that resulted from a nationwide survey of 1300 men and women: “10 Steps to Building Confidence.”  It contains stories of people rebuilding their lives after their confidence was destroyed as a result of what Dr. Briles calls “cosmic gooses.” These stories are from “average” people, as well as popular celebrities (Tiger Woods, Oprah). This book now also sits on my resource shelf and will be one I share with clients again and again.

7.    A Master Class in Gremlin Taming: The Absolutely Indispensable Next Step for Freeing Yourself from the Monster of the Mind by Rick Carson

In a nutshell: The “narrator in your head” is what Rick Carson calls your Gremlin. That Gremlin is no small animated character, he’s responsible for using millions of strategies that cause you to get in your own way – to get in you way of experiencing joy, emotion, success, and well-being, to name a few.

Early on in the life of this blog, I wrote a post describing the power of Rick’s first book, Taming Your Gremlin®. This year, Rick presented us with his advanced techniques on the subject in A Master Class in Gremlin Taming. This is the book that those of us who study personally with Rick use in our Mastering Your Craft groups. Read and put into practice and it will help you further Tame your own Gremlin and show up more fully in the world. (Entrepreneurs,  join me for a Free Teleclass to discover how this approach is a powerful tool for your business and life)***

8.    The Answer: Grow Any Business, Achieve Financial Freedom, and Live an Extraordinary Life by John Assaraf

In a nutshell:  Keys for getting innovative when times are tough. Learn how to create your own business blueprint for success. Hone in on your unique abilities so you can more rapidly achieve your business goals. John Assaraf says, “…[it’s] a proven business-growth system that we have used over and over and over again to help people just like you get from where they are to where they want to be.” I was inspired with new ideas to launch and I’ll bet you will be too.

9.    Lottery by Patricia Wood

In a nutshell: This novel centers around Perry Crandall, who narrates the story. Perry has an IQ of 76, but is not retarded, as he’ll explain quite clearly: his IQ would need to be less than 75 for that, and he is well aware of the difference even if others may not. Perry is 32 and has lived with his tell-it-like-it-is grandmother, Gram whose belief in him has helped tremendously. But when Gram dies, Perry’s money-hungry family members, who previously wanted little to do with him, swindle him out of the proceeds from the sale of her house. When Perry wins $12 million in the Washington State Lottery, they come back for more and suddenly take an interest in being his “family” again.  Perry discovers who his true friends are and also abilities he didn’t know he had. Quite inspirational and a joy to read. As I was, I’m sure you’ll think twice the next time you try to convince yourself you can’t do something.

10.    What Got You Here Won’t Get You There by Marshall Goldsmith

In a nutshell: This has been sitting on my stack of books to read since it came out almost two years ago. I wish I would have gotten to it sooner but regret is one of those things that won’t get me where I want to go:) The wisdom in this book may be aimed at executives, but it is just as valuable for those of us who are entrepreneurs and/or small business owners. The 20 bad habits that can sabotage already successful careers or personal lives are not so new for those who understand the importance of people-skills, but it is an honest, inspirational and straight-forward reminder for all of us.

Getting Out of Your Own Way – A Success Strategy for Entrepreneurs.

Write up by Julie Hood, CEO of YourBlogTeam.com:
“A 30-minute experiential-exercise-based teleclass with master coach and strategist, Erica Ross-Krieger (she’s my business coach and has helped me get through some major obstacles over the past 18 months).  Cannot be done while driving as there is some closed-eye work.

The main goal is to introduce you to a tool to help you get out of your own way and access more of your true nature.”

Monday, January 5, 2009
1 pm Pacific, 2 pm Mountain, 3 pm Central, 4 pm Eastern

Enrollment is limited, please call to register: 925-933-7445

“Open Your Heart, Change Your World”: A Meditation from Spring Forest QiGong

open-your-heart-stretch.jpgI was in the midst of writing the last post of my 2008’s Cornucopia of Resources Series today. I was stressing out to get the post up and give you the list of books I’ve found inspirational this year.

Somewhere along the way, I caught myself tensed up, hunched over the keyboard, with shallow breathing and a furrowed brow (familiar at all?). Noticing this, I stopped. I took a deep breath, pushed back from the computer and went to get a glass of water. A few more deep breaths and that glass of water later, and I vowed to re-enter my office with another mindset..or rather, another “heart-set.” I reminded myself to slow down and write from my heart.

When I returned to my desk, I took another minute out to check my email in-box. And there it was. An email from my friends at Spring Forest QiGong (SFQ), containing a special gift – a 15 minute meditation form SFQ founder, Chunyi Lin called, “Open Your Heart, Change Your World.”  I had just affirmed I’d go about my writing with and open heart, and so I took 15 minutes out right then and there to close my eyes and listen to the meditation.

Chunyi Lin’s meditation did indeed help me to Open my Heart and Change my World.

I’d like to pass the message and the meditation on to you.

Click this underlined phrase here to listen.

And be sure to read the note below that came from Chunyi Lin along with his gift.


Hello Friends:

Many of us are impacted by the troubles in our world as this year draws to a close and are looking for better ways to cope with the challenges in the coming year – be they economic, emotional, physical or spiritual.

At Spring Forest Qigong, we wondered what we could do to help. We decided to create a special healing meditation by Master Chunyi Lin as our gift to you and to others this holiday season. It’s our hope that this free 15 minute meditation might be useful to many.

This podcast is our gift to everyone. All you need do is download and listen. After listening we hope you will want to share it with everyone you know.

Imagine what would happen if 1,000, or 1 million, or 1 billion people practiced this simple, openhearted exercise every day. We would change our world!

In peace,

Your Spring Forest Friends

On my end, I’ll get back to working on the inspirational books post and have it for you soon. For now though, I hope you take time out to enjoy this meditation. There’s no better resource I know at this moment, to help you open your heart and change your world.

p.s. I am not an affiliate or in any way compensated by SFQ. I am simply an advocate of their wonderful work in the world.

Call me to set up a 30-minute wellness coaching session during the holidays. You’ll be sure to find the peaceful oasis within your own heart. 925-933-7445


RESOURCES FOR YOUR WELL-BEING – Part 2 of 3 of the Cornucopia Series

giving-resources.jpgIn this second post of the Cornucopia series, you’ll find the quotes, websites, blogs, a healthy recipe, and meditation tools that inspired me and enhanced my sense of Well-Being in 2008. How do I keep track of them all?

I keep a notebook set aside to list my favorites each month. Nothing fancy, nothing electronic. A composition book and a pen. Then at year end, I sit back with a cup of tea and my laptop and revisit all that I noted. It’s a fun way to wrap up the year. And as I said in the first post of this series, this year, I’m expanding my annual tradition and sharing my favorites with you…it’s better that way!

So, browse around and find just the right something to strengthen your own sense of abundance, appreciation, delight and Well-Being this season. Enjoy!

Here are a few of my favorite quotes — those that I’ve used as inspiration this year. I keep many quotes on stickie-notes in a fat file folder…things I tear from magazines or notes scribbled from something I read somewhere (even from my own book if I think I need a reminder:) I pull one quote out each week that I want to sit beside my computer. These four came out from the file more than a few times to encourage me this year:

Hope begins in the dark, the stubborn hope
that if you just show up ad try to do the
right thing, the dawn will come. You wait and
watch and work: You don’t give up.
– Anne Lamott, writer

We must be the change
we wish to see in the world.
– Mahatma Gandi

We must be willing
to get rid of the
life we planned, so
as to have the life
that is waiting for us.
– Joseph Campbell, author

Be brave enough to live life creatively. The creative is the place where no one else has ever been. You have to leave the city of your comfort and go into the wilderness of your intuition. You can’t get there by bus, only by hard work and risk and by not quite knowing what you’re doing. What you’ll discover will be wonderful. What you’ll discover will be yourself.
– Alan Alda, actor


WEBSITES and BLOG POSTS (including a healthy recipe:)
Like you, I read a ton of blog posts and browse a gazillion websites each week.  Keeping track of my favorites isn’t easy. But I enjoy doing so. And with that, I’m happy to name the posts and sites below as some of the big contributors to my well-being this year:

1. Blog: ZenHabits.net
Favorite Post this year: Living Simply: The Ultimate Guide to Conquering Your Clutter
I enjoy the simplicity of Leo Babauta’s writing. And there are many of his blog posts I have flagged as favorites this year. But this one from November, contains a tip that’s recently made a world of difference to me.

My floor-to-ceiling bookshelves were overflowing. When it came to books, Leo’s article helped me explore the habit that I needed to adopt: the “One in, Two Out” rule. It’s a long blog post, but this one tiny tip is worth more than it’s weight in gold to me!

 2. Blog: TerryStarbucker.com  Ramblings From a Glass Half Full
Favorite post this year: The Real Secret of Life, August 3, 2008
Terry’s blog just flat out makes me smile. What better key to Well-Being? I especially loved this post in August, reminding us to “Never grow up”, along with the 7 keys to happy and successful adulthood. You’ve got to read this post, from Terry’s Category “Half-Fullism.” (P.S. Although the glass is already half full in this post, I’d add Toy Stores to item # 1 in the post! Enjoy:)

3. Blog: Levite Chronicles by Jon Swanson at: http://levite.wordpress.com
Favorite post this year: February, 2008 “Good Intentions

One of my morning office rituals is to read three posts from 15 of my favorite blogs. I rotate and alternate the 15 and vary which three blogs I read each weekday. When I get to Jon Swanson’s Levite Chronicles blog, I can always count on a post that will touch my soul and give me something delicious to think about for the day.

Back in February, Jon wrote a post called, “Good Intentions”, about shooting free throws at the basketball court. I’ve marked many of Jon’s posts as my favorites, but this one still sticks with me. It’s about daily practice. It’s about the daily practice of your relationship with your soul, God, your heart, love, and life. I commented on this post, but my mere words can’t really capture the way it touched me. Whenever my daily practice is a struggle (often:), I think of Jon shooting free throws…and keep on keepin’ on.

4. Blog: Successful and Outstanding Blog(gers) by Liz Strauss at http://www.successful-blog.com/
Favorite post this year: April, 2008How to Have Positivity and Confidence Making Tough Decisions
In mid-April, Steve and I were looking at a real estate investment and stuck in the decision-making process. That week, I read Liz’s post about making tough decisions and the ah-ha light went on…looking at what your Head and Heart have to say about a tough decision can be enlightening. This post and some quiet contemplation helped us move forward. You’ll probably want to bookmark it…I did.

5. Website: Mayo-Clinic.com ‘s Healthy Recipes
Favorite Recipe: Chicken and Asparagus Tossed with Penne and Goat Cheese
I found this recipe in 2007, but it remains my favorite in 2008. I substitute Purcell Mountain Farms‘ organic brown rice penne pasta for the wheat pasta, fresh tomatoes for the canned (especially if it’s heirloom time), use free-ranmge organic chicken, and if it’s not asparagus season, I use broccoli. Good, hearty, healthy comfort food:)

6. Website: InspireMeToday.com filled with juicy gems, this inspirational membership site was founded by Gail Lynne Goodwin
Gail’s Blog: InspireMeToday at http://www.InspireMeToday/Gail
Favorite post this year: November’s “Born to Fly
Gail’s November post, “Born to Fly,” came juist at the right time. I’d been considering a new internet business venture for three months, and was a bit fearful about taking it on. Gail’s words, ”…when the passion is louder than the fear…” were all I needed to step forward. Enjoy the entire post here: http://www.inspiremetoday.com/gail/2008/11/born-to-fly/

1. Holosynch®
by Bill Harris’ company, Centerpointe (click sidebar for link to free CD)
Why I love it:
I’ve been meditating and sitting zazen for 15 years. I’ve been a student of Maharaji for three. I love my daily practice. And when I heard Bill Harris say that Holosynch can “help you meditate like a monk at the touch of a button” I was intrigued. Couild I go deeper with my meditation? Could I sharpen my brain’s ability to focus? I did some research, tested out his free CD, and fell in love with the Holosynch® system and technology. More important though is that it’s helped me deepen my existent practice. The fact that I get to weave in my own powerful affirmations with the patented subliminal technology is icing on the cake. (As you can see on my sidebar here, I’m such a proponent of Centerpointe’s Holosynch® program I decided to become an affiliate. I don’t do so unless I use and love a program or product myself.) Try the free CD and let know what you think.

2. Meditations for Optimum Health CD by Dr. Andrew Weil
Why I love it:
When I want a brief pick-me-up meditation during the day, I turn off the phones and computer, close the blinds, put my feet up, sit back with my ipod and play a selection from this CD. The beautiful music in the background and Andrew Weil’s soothing voice reminding me to focus on my breath is all it takes for me to recharge and renew.

—   That’s it for this installment. Next and final post of this series will have more resources that inspired me this year! Stay tuned. And let me know:

What’s inspired you this year?

A Cornucopia of Wellness Resources – Part 1

cornucopia.jpgThose of us committed to deepening ourselves and learning all we can from our life journeys, are using this passage of time right now to say “Yes we can.” Yes, we can focus on all we have in our lives, all we aspire to, and all we have to share and give.

In this spirit of abundance and plenty, I’ll be sharing some of my 2008 harvest in the next few posts. I’ve gathered together some resources that have contributed to my own Well-Being this year. So feel free to dig around in the next few posts. Find just the right something within the bounty of quotes, websites, blogs, stories and snippets of thought I’ll share, that will contribute to your own sense of abundance, appreciation, delight and Well-Being this season.

I give thanks for your readership, your comments, your inspiring progress you’ve made through our coaching sessions and teleclasses and wish you a meaningful Thanksgiving…

Today’s Harvest brings this Snippet of Thought that meandered through my mind just the other day:

Simply Enough

I sat at my desk, facing my computer, navigating around the internet in total physical tension and mental overwhelm. With lightening speed, thoughts racing through my head screamed, “So much to do. So much information coming at me. So many email messages to read. So many new e-books to read, CDs to listen to, tele-events to attend, marketing actions to take. Other people are out there making giant headway…will I ever get enough new and useful information and get it fast enough?”

I did what I know to do when I hit this stage. I pushed away from my desk, took a breath, left the room, got a glass of water, and went outside.

The crisp autumn air greeted me. A sudden glimpse of a hummingbird, dancing in our red-flowering bushes, helped me forget my tension and brought an ear-to-ear grin to my face. I took a deep breath, looked up at the wide blue sky, grabbed another deep breath and stood there just Being.

Gently, a thought floated into the space of my refreshed mind…

“Wait a minute, Erica. What is the rush at your computer? You take a deep lung-filling breath of air here, not worrying about whether you grabbed enough, or worrying if there won’t be enough air for you, or that someone else will get to it first, or hurrying to grab the next breath. All the air you need is right here. All around you. Why not approach the internet and information the same way. In fact, why not approach life this way?”

I stood still and appreciated this short but life-altering moment. I had a deep visceral understanding that, in this age of information, our job is to discern what we need, take it in, use it, and gently let the rest go. And just like it’s not ours to worry if we get the right bite of air, or worry if we’ll run out of air, or fret that someone else is getting better or more air than we are, it’s not ours to try to take in every drop of information. Ahh.

I took another deep lung-full of air, stretched toward the sun, and headed back inside…forever touched by what I’d breathed in.

Are you “taking in all the air you need?” My friend, Gremlin-Tamer, and coach, Rick Carson, is fond of asking this question. When I’m not breathing, or I’ve squelched my breath in a moment of worry , he reminds me to take in all the air I need. How is your breath at this moment? Are you taking in all the air you need? Are you remembering that there is plenty of it available?

Grab a bite of holiday coaching with Erica this holiday season. Call for an individual session or join others for the December Teleclasses, “Why Weight?” and “Sacred Attitudes for Stress-Free Holidays“. Space is limited. Offices: 925-933-7445