Dinner is Organic

Video: technical difficulties. It will be posted again later.

Here is the organic dinner I hosted for my friends. The one I was telling you about!! Enjoy.

I hope it inspires you to spend some time sharing your passion with your friends while you have the time.

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My growth in Bulgaria is done

My blog was about finding out if Bulgaria offered organic. My life before I started this journey was as organic as I ever wanted it to be. I knew where to get everything and which brand I liked. It was easy to be organic. When I moved here, I was shocked and extremely discouraged about living an organic life, or even a healthy one at that. When I shared this with my JMC professor she encouraged me to seek out organic in Bulgaria and blog about it for class. So I asked myself “How organic is Bulgaria?”

Over the months I sought after organic everywhere I could. It started out small. Looking all over Kauflands trying to read Cyrillic, this did not work well. I did end up finding a local market that offered some local grown fruits and vegetables.  I went to the school’s cafeteria to find out if they use organic ingredients. Mark Waterhouse, the cafeteria director told me they did not. “We simply can’t afford it,” he added. I was able to reach out beyond Blageovgrad and found several organic shops in Sofia, BG. It didn’t stop there; every time I traveled I was looking! I found organic in Germany and Hungary too!

I was on the hunt. I searched at the malls, while shopping with friends, for organic beauty products. I was able to find many products in Sofia. I blogged about it of course!  I was checking the world wide web which did not provide much. Except one helpful site a friend Amalija sent me called Happycow.net. Beyond this website I could barely come across anything on the internet with even the word organic in it as it related to Bulgaria. And forget social networking. That was a big fat nothing. It was really disappointing to realize how little people knew about these organic places I was finding on my own all over Bulgaria.

All my seeking gave me my answer. Bulgaria you are organic. People just are not very aware just how organic you are. What is cool is my blog is here to share with Bulgaria and the world about the organic side to Bulgaria! What an amazing responsibility I didn’t even realize I had.

I always liked the idea of blogging, because I saw all these ‘cool blogs’ that had photos and videos and talked about interesting things. In the past I have tried to blog, but it never worked out. I always gave up after a week because life would just become a handful. My blog attempts were never very cool or artsy and I never felt I was talking about anything interesting anyway. Now I can say I have kept up a blog for an entire semester and I blog about something that benefits people. I never thought this would happen.


As this semester comes to an end here in Bulgaria I look back through my blog and realize how much I have accomplished. I am amazed to see so many posts with photos and even videos. Above is even the growth my basil plant I planted halfway through the semester!

My first major video I made was from ‘Taste buds speak louder than words.’  “I had a brilliant idea to prepare two identical meals; one with organic ingredients and other with regular ones to see if there is a difference. I asked two friends at AUBG, Sven and Sara, to join me.” I recorded us cooking and trying out the two meals. Sara said “This is the best meal I’ve had in a while.”

It was a successful tasting event and a successful video! I made this entire video on YouTube editor, which I have come to learn sucks. It gave me a lot of issues. I was dealing with so many clips that it made it a big challenge, but I did it!  Normally I would have given up and now I look at this video and am so proud I have this documented experience!

My favorite video is from ‘Namaste.’ I teach a yoga class at AUBG because “yoga is a source of organic physical, mental and emotional well-being for me.” I love teaching this class, and when Renee, an AUBG student, said “It’s like my hour of peace during the week.” That is when I knew I am influencing people in a positive way with the organic life. This, of course, is what makes it my favorite video. The other reason it’s my favorite is because I used Adobe Premiere to make it and it was hard.

It was only my second time using the program and I learned so much about it through this video. I was able to play around and do many things to my video. Things I use to see in other videos and ask myself how do they do that. I am now able to do those things. I know how to do voice overs, showing clips at the top of the screen while another clip is playing and, my favorite; add music in the background while someone is speaking. This video, to me, represents my full growth.

It shows me keeping my organic life style while here. It shows me sharing it with other people, and it shows my progress in using technology!

I didn’t realize I had learned so much because I was having fun while doing it! I was just taking one of my passions and sharing it with anyone who was interested. What is easier than that?  Using the technology got easier and less of a burden because it was showing off my passion. I promoted organic in my personal life to everyone I knew and on the internet to the people I could not contact directly.

Though my organic journey is over in Bulgaria I am going to continue to seek out an organic life and post about it. I am even planing to live in Spain and WWOOF. This is where you volunteer on an organic farm. I will be sharing with you my experience and what I am learning!

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Dogs Gone 4ever

At an in class press conference I had to use my media tools as a journalist to tell the story.

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Organic Inside and OUT

ImageThese are a few of the organic or natural products I use here in Bulgaria. I believe that living an organic lifestyle means more than just putting organic in our bodies. I look for organic in my beauty regimes too! I found both of these brands in Sofia, BG. Yves Rocher has its own store in the mall and Yes to Carrots I found at Sephora in the mall as well!  (Some links lead to American stores; Bulgaria has not been added to the locations list.)

Here are some TIPS:

Green is a pretty broad term that can mean many different things and has definitely become a buzzword in selling everything from food to beauty care. Here at Amepha’s Organic, green beauty means products that are safer and healthier for our bodies and our planet. This includes using sustainable, plant based ingredients and eco-friendly packaging versus using toxic chemicals, animal derivatives and wasteful packaging.

Why is it important to choose healthy beauty products?

It’s important because the skin is our largest organ, which not only protects us and helps us detox, it also absorbs 70% of what we put on it. Think about all the products we use on our skin each day – lotions, perfume, body wash, face cleansers, deodorant, and so on. Then consider there are hundreds of chemicals used to create most commercial beauty products, many of them found to contribute to everything from hormone disruption and allergies to cancer and Alzheimer’s. They also show up in our rivers, lakes and water supply. The fact that so much money is spent on cancer research, yet it continues to increase at such an alarming rate, indicates that we must take a different approach to our well-being. We believe this means choosing healthier, more natural foods as well as beauty and self-care products.

What are the most important toxic ingredients to watch out for?

Some of the top toxic beauty ingredients are petrolatum/mineral oil, fragrance, phthalates, parabens, sodium laureth/laurel sulfate, triclosan and talc. These ingredients have been linked to cancer and many other health issues. Check out our Top 12 Toxic Beauty Ingredients list to avoid and further explanation of each ingredient and how they affect the body.

What are some of the most beneficial, healthy ingredients to look for?

Look for plant-based ingredients you actually recognize, such as flower, herb, fruit, vegetable and nut derivatives. Try to use the same theory for choosing beauty products you use for food: the less ingredients, the better.Image

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how to see naturally

how to see naturally

Many things in Bulgaria that say “BIO” on them usual means they are natural! So look for the word “BIO.” Also, there may be a small green leaf on the package from what I have noticed!

click the photo above to see more details

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Today in my MMJ220a class at AUBG I learned how to use Storify. I saw how journalists are using Storify to clarify, confirm and report about news. I also learned how to use it for my own personal use.

Storify has place many social media networking sites in one place. You can search key words on many types of media sites and pull information from them to create your own story.

Here is a link to the story.

[View the story “Speak Up Bulgaria” on Storify]

Below is what the story looks like on Storify.


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more and more friends doing the Juice diet detox!

6 more to GO!!!.

After doing a juice detox for myself other friends jumped on the “juice train” so-to-speak. It is amazing to see people try new things to benefit and take care of their bodies!! Keep up the great work everyone!  Being healthy is awesome!

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