The Power of a Hug

I remember growing up and being taught to not talk to strangers, let alone give them a hug and for good reason with the world we live in and all the violence we see happening to our children, but is that the best way? I don’t think we should force our kids to hug people, we need to teach them to trust their instincts, but we should teach them about the power of a “good hug”. I taught me kids early to give “good hugs”, to the people in our circle of friends and family. They are all grown up and they still give hugs. Life is about balance with wisdom. We as human beings need healthy and healing physical touch. Studies have shown that touch is essential to our well being, even for our mortality .

But touch is even more vital than this: babies who are not held and nuzzled and hugged enough will literally stop growing and-if the situation lasts long enough, even if they are receiving proper nutrition-die. SOURCE:

Bruce D. Perry, MD, Ph.D. is a child psychiatrist and neuroscientist. He is the Senior Fellow of The Child Trauma Academy and co-author of Born for Love: Why Empathy is Essential—And Endangered.

Maia Szalavitz has published five books and written for The New York Times, Time magazine online, New Scientist, Psychology Today, and other major publications.

So here’s an experiment you may want to try and it may bring a bit of “Happy” into your life. Start a hug campaign in your home, church or community. I suggest to start some where you and the people around you will feel comfortable and open to this experiment of hugging.

Juan Mann, started a very public and controversial hug campaign, that impacted thousands of people. It was so powerful that authorities, banned his campaign. Juan went around and had people sign s petition and they had to remove the ban and the hugging party continued, Hugging is a big deal. Check out his video below and some reason why hugging is so good for us :

Juan Mann Hugging Campaign

Here’s a few reasons that may inspire you

to hug more:

Scientific research shows that a good hug, meaning at least 20 seconds is the fastest way for you to get oxytocin flowing in your body. Oxytocin, also known as the “love drug”, calms your nervous system and boosts positive emotions. Here’s how a good hug resulting in oxytocin flow affects you:

• It lowers your blood pressure, especially helpful if you’re feeling anxious.

• It lowers your cortisol (the stress hormone), enabling a higher quality of sleep.

• It can increase your social connections and a sense of belonging.

Studies have also shown that couples who hug more are more likely to stay together. Some reports have even shown hugs can reduce pain. So let’s get the hugging party started. SPREAD THE LOVE. 💕

WHEW! Life has been an Adventure! Food. Birthday Celebrations. Cooking Demos for Charity. Cover Girl. WOW!

Wow, May was a month of major surprises and lots of fun adventures. So, forgive me for just now posting. Boy, I did miss you guys, but let’s sit down for a moment. Do you have your favorite cup of tea? Great, because I have so much to talk about! Well, where do I begin? FOOD, of course my dear, food. I was asked back again this year to be one of the chefs to do a cooking demo on the big stage at Taste of Town Brookhaven for this year’s charity event to benefit LifeLine Animal Project.

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It was amazing and the best part, it was my birthday and I got to cook in front of this incredible audience and they all sung happy birthday to me, by the lead of celebrity and award winning DJ, Yvonne Monet, she was the Mcee for the evening and we jammed out as I did my cooking demo. I made my Cilantro Lime Shrimp with an avocado and pepper salsa.

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Grilled Cilantro Lime Shrimp with an avocado and pepper salsa

Along with a wonderful Basil and Mint Berry Salad. The music was pumping and the crowds were jumping and it was just a big party. The next day my friends threw me this amazing dinner party at my favorite restaurant, St.Cecilia Atlanta, best pasta and fish in Atlanta.

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Birthday at St.Cecilia

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St.Cecilia
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St.Cecilia

Now this is a condensed version of my birthday month, also had a pre launch cookbook cooking demo at William Sonoma and my bestie brought the most beautiful birthday cake from my new favorite dessert place,Blue Rooster Bake Shop and Eatery.

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Blue Rooster Bake Shop and Eatery
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Blue Rooster Bake Shop and Eatery

I also got a chance to go to the filming of my friends new Food Network show and it was so much fun! I even got an opportunity to be part of the filming. The theme was the Great Gatsby. One of the coolest date nights with my hubby. He looked amazing in his tux.

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Great Gatsby
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Great Gatsby

Okay, whew! I am not done yet, tons of lunches and spa times, but the coolest thing was to be named Best Self Atlanta Magazine‘s  2017 Over 40 and Fabulous Cover Girl, check out the articles here and read about all of the winners this year.  A big THANK YOU to the staff of Best Self Atlanta and our amazing photographer Sawyer Photography

It has been a month, but I have been playing around with some new and delicious recipes for you guys to try, will post soon.  I want to just give a big shout out to the month of May and how amazing it has been for me. Recipes coming soon and oh my, what will June bring.  Enjoy this little gallery and remember to Set the Table with Love.

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Best Self Atlanta Magazine Cover Girl
Best Self Atlanta Magazine Cover Girl
Best Self Atlanta Magazine Cover Girl
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Best Self Atlanta Magazine Cover Girl