drawings

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All About Eve

Published May 7, 2017 by Maryanne

SAM_2438Drawing by Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta

All About Eve

All about Eve?

What about me?

In a superficial society.

Trendy, Fendi,

Keeping up with Beyonce

Spending at your local foods

People are so freakin’ rude

Pushing shop carts into butts

Let their kids do what they want.

Monopolize the conversation

It’s better than a sex sensation

Demean others, even your friends

The main thing is to “win, win, win.”

Do it daily, do it loud

Do it often so you feel proud

Raise your kid the same way

She’s a princess every day

Problems in the world we see

Ignorance, sickness, poverty

Change would be nice, if only …

Yet we still chant, “Me! Me! Me!”

And, you know, it’s nothing new,

Eve was all about “me” too.

Back then it was forbidden fruit,

Now it’s Botox to stay cute.

Charlton Heston, was once the rage, uh-huh

No one cares what Moses claimed; uh-huh

And the ME goes on. And the ME goes on.

On.

On.

On.

On.

Copyright 2017, Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta

All rights reserved.

Religious or Spiritual? Universal!

Published February 24, 2015 by Maryanne

HelloBuddhaDrawing by Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta, 2005

“Religion” means God-fearing. And in this day and age “spiritual” means people-fearing. People are so afraid others thinking they are Catholic or Christian, they wear the word “spiritual” like a badge of courage.

That upsets me.

Because while, no doubt, it’s not healthy to be God-fearing, dogmatic and/or pious, religion does have a huge place in ethereal growth. Yes, even Christianity.

Hear me out.

In the mid-1980s, I spent almost a year studying several different religions with a spiritual mentor. I was only in my mid-20s and back then it was unheard of for a young girl to want to study with a man old enough to be her father. For almost a year, I spent less time in nightclubs and more time in meditation. It was a wondrous experience I will never forget and have several diaries in case I do.

The conclusion I came to was that everyone is right. In fact, my favorite book that my mentor gave me was called “Everyone is Right” which is available on Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Everyone-Comparative-Religion-Relation-Science/dp/0875165656

Even though I came to this conclusion I was still drawn to the Christian church. What can I say, I just love the teachings of Jesus Christ. Mind you, I was never forced to go to church as a child. I came to love Jesus on my own. And a few years ago I found a Christian church I was able to call “home” though I don’t go as often as I probably should.

Some Christians don’t relate to me because I still take from other religions. And on the flip side, many non-Christians turn their noses up on me as well for going to church.

It’s okay though. I feel completely comfortable being around others who are not exactly thinking like me. This is the beauty of putting faith into a ritual (of sorts) and sticking to your guns about it. I feel that in order to grow spiritually, you need to be around others who are different from you. That kind of experience makes you more spiritual. Uh … wait … I can’t use that word, it’s become too hipster (and possibly a code word for non-Christian).

Let’s just say I’m universal! That’s a badge of courage I can live with! 🙂

Vinegar Worth Bragg-ing About

Published September 7, 2013 by Maryanne

braggs_acv_1The following article originally ran in my column “Here’s to Your Health” and was originally published in The Patch online. They’ve since changed their website and so many amazing articles are gone forever. LUCKILY I found this in my in-box!

Here’s to Your Health

“Vinegar worth Bragg-ing about”

By Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta

I love vinegar!

I put vinegar on everything: vegetables, fish, brown rice, bread and even on French fries if I’m in a cheating mood.

There are so many types of vinegar that can be used for culinary flavoring: balsamic, rice, malt, sherry, red wine, and white wine, to name a few.

But the one vinegar that offers more than flavoring is apple cider vinegar – real apple cider vinegar that’s raw, organic, unfiltered and containing “the mother” which is a stringy substance floating around in the bottle. When you see “the mother” in a bottle of vinegar that is when you know you have the real deal; a product with its nutrients intact.

Real apple cider vinegar is made from fresh ripe apples that are fermented. Real vinegar contains a ton of vitamins and minerals. It’s the only vinegar I keep in my home.

Bragg Live Foods (which include Bragg’s Apple Cider Vinegar “with The Mother”) were founded by Dr. Paul C. Bragg, a health crusader who opened the first health food store in 1912. Crippled by TB as a teenager, Paul Bragg developed his own eating and exercise program which got him back into top health. He excelled in running, swimming, biking, progressive weight training and mountain climbing, and thus went on to begin his health crusade helping people from all walks of life.

I had the opportunity to speak with Dr. Bragg’s daughter, who is also a health crusader and health guru to the stars (including Katy Perry, Clint Eastwood, Cloris Leachman and The Beach Boys, to name a few!)

“You are what you eat, drink, breathe, think, say and do,” Patricia said. “It’s so important to be a good captain of your life.”

In addition to eating a vegan diet (which includes beans and brown rice) with 60 percent raw vegetables daily, Patricia has an apple cider drink three times a day for her health.

Mixing two tablespoons of apple cider vinegar and honey in a glass of water balances sugar, balances acid/alkaline, eliminates constipation, improves digestion, retards the onset of old age, relieves PMS, and assists in weight loss. This mixture also helps get rid of minor skin rashes and improves skin texture. And I can certainly attest to that – at 47-years of age, I do not have cellulite!

Patricia rubs the vinegar all over her skin. She said, “My face looks like a shining apple!” She recommends using the vinegar as a hair rinse to get rid of dandruff. It can also be used to get rid of shingles, sunburn and mosquito bites. It can also be used as a gargle for sore throats.

“All our singers gargle with it,” Patricia said, and shared that singer Katy Perry consumes the vinegar drinks three times a day to keep her vocal chords strong.

And the drink helped Cloris Leachman get rid of her asthma. “Things like this happen all the time,” said Patricia.

Real apple cider vinegar has been around since the beginning of time. Hippocrates, the “father of medicine” has used the vinegar around 400 B.C.; Julius Ceasar used it as a tonic to ward off disease; and in Japan, warriors drank it for power.

“The ‘mother’ is the miracle,” Patricia said, referring to the stringy substance in the bottle. “The mother is the mother enzyme that forms from the apples. In the early days they all [all the apple cider vinegars] had ‘the mother.’”

But in the late 1930s and 1940s, consumers thought that real apple cider vinegar looked “dirty.”

Manufactures started boiling vinegar, killing “the mother” and then straining it.

Fortunately the organic, unfiltered, nutritious “mother” is available today in health food stores and even supermarket chains such as Shop Rite and A&P. Everyone can enjoy this delicious tart vinegar and all of  it has to offer.

For more information on Patricia Bragg, go to: http://www.bragg.com/

What Spring Does to Christmas Art!

Published April 10, 2013 by Maryanne

SAM_0493Artwork by Shaolin

Every year my friend Shaolin sends the most gorgeous hand drawn Christmas cards. My husband eagerly awaits her card, as they are just so gorgeous. All the time and effort put into her creations is much appreciated by us.

The other day as the sun was setting, my husband called me into the kitchen and said, “Get your camera!” I thought maybe one of the cats was doing something cute. But, wow, the way the sun set was shining on Shaolin’s drawing, which we keep pinned up on our refrigerator, was a most gorgeous site!

Too cool not to share with fellow bloggers!

Santa Claus’s Creator Was a New Jersey Resident

Published January 21, 2013 by Maryanne

Santa ClausSanta Claus drawing by Thomas Nast

Yes, Santa Claus — the modern, most popular version as we know him, fat and jolly — was created by artist Thomas Nast, a German born American lived in Morristown, New Jersey, moving there with his family in 1870. (Which is across the street from the Macculloch Hall Museum. I went there yesterday for the second time and it’s just amazing!)

In addition to drawing Santa Claus, Thomas Nast was also famous for his political cartoons which were featured in Harper’s Weekly.

One cartoon that I’m especially intrigued with is his portrayal of Victoria Woodhull, an American leader of the woman’s suffrage movement.

Free loveThomas Nast drawing of Victoria Woodhull

Woodhull was an advocate of “free love” (freedom to marry, divorce and bear children without interference from the government). She was also into spiritualism and vegetarianism.

She was the first woman to start a weekly newspaper; an activist for women’s rights and labor reforms. In 1872, she was the first female candidate for President of the United States.

Pretty mind-blowing for the 1800s, right? This woman is one of my heroes!

But all these great ideas were considered controversial for the time, therefore some considered her satanic, as depicted in the above drawing by Thomas Nast.

Here is more information on the Macculloch Hall Historic Museum in Morristown, New Jersey (and if you visit, you’ll see the home Thomas Nast lived in, right across the street, but it’s private property for a resident, not open to the public): http://www.maccullochhall.org/

Thomas Nast homeThomas Nast home (photo swiped from Google)