International Women's Day, Power without Pinot

International Women's Day, March 8th 2020, is a global day celebrating the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women.

The IWD 2020 campaign theme is drawn from a notion of 'Collective Individualism.'

We are all parts of a whole.

Our individual actions, conversations, behaviors and mindsets can have an impact on our larger society. 

Collectively we can help create a gender equal world and we can all choose to be #EachforEqual.

It is proven that when women do better, countries do better, communities do better, businesses do better and families do better.

Equality is not just a women’s issue. It's an everyone issue. 

Supporting women not only helps women, it helps everyone. 

One thing keeping women down is increased alcohol consumption. 

Unfortunately, alcohol is reported by Dr. George Koob, Director of the National Institute of Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, as  “a growing women’s health issue.” 

He and Aaron...

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Alcohol Free Podcast Recommendations with an Exciting Update

I became a student of my own problem when I ditched the drink.

I immersed myself in books, instagrammers, music, and everything alcohol free. 

These sober tools were great guides and helped me to feel part of a larger community.

I was a lurker in this community, and now I am a contributor!

This can happen to you too!  

This email was one of the first Ditched the Drink Subscribers emails I sent.

I started with about 20 family and friends emails, and it has grown from there. 

I still agree with my recommendations, but I have one exciting update. 

I was interviewed for Recovery Happy Hour!!! You can find me on Episode 81.

I am really proud of my interview. Check it out! 

Here are a few of my podcast recommendations:

HOME by Laura McKowen and Holly Whitaker

They no longer do this podcast, but I used to listen to it as I walked the track during my daughter's volleyball practice. it made me feel like I was on the phone with my friends. This really helped me...

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If Drinking Is Good For My Health, Why do I Feel Like Shit?

If drinking is good for my health then why do I feel like shit after I drink? 

If drinking relaxes me, then why do I feel crippling anxiety after a night of drinking?  

Well friends, I hate to tell you, but your beloved bottle of wine is doing more harm than good.

You know this from your own experience, and not because I am telling you. 

It's not that hard to find a research study that suggests drinking in moderation is good for the heart. You can easily find some research that implies drinking helps you to live longer. 

Believe me, when I say, as a drinker, nothing comforted me more than hearing science was on my side, and drinking was good for my health.

The bad news is, these studies are often funded by alcohol companies.

The outcomes are often based on factors other than alcohol.  

In all the studies key word is moderation, which typically means one 5 oz glass of wine per day.

We would all like to think we are just moderate drinkers, but...

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First Vacation After Quitting Drinking

I am celebrating 2 year sober. 

Looking back, I'd like to tell my fragile newly sober self the lessons I've learned. 

I hope it comforts you to know that ditching the drink is really uncomfortable. 

That doesn't mean you are doing it wrong. 

You won't always feels the discomfort you feel now. 

I'd like to share my first sober vacation with you.  

I was only a month sober when I took my family on a Spring Break beach vacation.

At the time, when I was counting the days, if not hours, being sober.

A month felt like a really long time.

When I started on my quit drinking again experiment,

I didn’t even know if I would make it 5 days without alcohol.

After 30 Days I was ready for the dramatic before and after picture. 

It felt like I changed everything in 30 days. 

Now, after 2 years into this alcohol free life, I know that at 30 days I was still a fragile baby bird, in my sobriety. 

At 30 days sober, after mostly staying...

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My First Night Out, After Quitting Drinking

I am 2 years away from my last drink.

Looking back, I’d love to tell myself then, what I know now. 

The biggest lesson would be, that I wouldn't always feel the way I felt.

Getting sober was a process.

I had to go through each phase, before I reached the next.

Just because it didn't always feel pleasant, didn't mean I was doing it wrong. 

It meant I was doing it right.

I can see this now, in hindsight.

Let me take you back to the beginning, when I wasn't so sure.

This might provide some comfort in knowing that you are not alone.   

My first night out

I remember being just 5 days sober and going to my first party.

I didn't want to go, but we had committed, before I decided to quit drinking. 

We had already bought tickets to see a show, and I felt like I couldn't back out.

We had a pre party to attend before going to see a band at a bar.

We showed up to the pre party.

I brought my favorite water bottle with me.

My husband was also not drinking,...

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Reflections on Two Years Alcohol Free

On February 20, 2020 I am celebrating 2 years of sobriety.

Two years ago, I was just existing, robotically going through the motions of life.

Today I really living out my dreams and I look forward to nearly everything. 

My first year getting sober was absolutely epic.

I relearned how to do everything without alcohol. 

My second year was epic too.

I transformed from someone who was surviving without alcohol, to someone thriving, who was no longer even thinking about drinking. 

I didn't know this would be my life story, but I am so glad it is .

Let me to share the evolution with you. 

On Day 1 of year 2, I announced my sobriety online to my private Facebook Community.

This felt like a big coming out for me.

I agonized and stressed over carefully choosing the right words for a whole year. 

For the whole first year of getting sober, I was quietly, and privately working on being alcohol free from mostly the comfort of home.

The only people that knew my...

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5 Ways to Celebrate Love in Sobriety

One of the best outcomes of sobriety is going from a dull existence to a vivid electric life. When you stop dulling your senses and escaping your feelings,  you get in touch with your own intuition and you start to trust yourself. Your confidence grows and that is the ultimate glow up. This is the most beautiful transformation. Love in sobriety is all about self love whether you are single or in a relationship. 

Here’s a few ways I like to celebrate love this Valentine’s Day with or without a partner. 

1- Taste of Love

You don’t need alcohol for a romantic Valentine’s Day. There are so many other flavors to enjoy. Coffee and dessert is the sexiest combo in my opinion. But if that is not your style, you can also mix up fancy drinks on your own. I love ordering something special from NA Craft Beverages and mixing up a fancy combination. Strawberries, raspberries, and mint make great garnishments for Valentine’s Day. Saint Ivy Gin and Tonic...

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Alcohol, Women, and Heart Health

The first Friday of February has been designated by the awareness campaign in the US, as National Wear Red Day to support women’s heart health. 

If you drink red wine, like I did, you love the research studies that claim drinking red wine is good for the heart. I liked to spread the good news about wine and heart health. 

I didn’t realize those studies really didn’t apply to me or my girlfriends, as we drank more than the recommended 5 oz of wine a day. 

What’s the truth about women, wine, and heart health?

Drinking alcohol regularly raises your blood pressure. So, if you are imbibing daily at wine o’clock, you are at risk.

Heavy drinking is associated with a number of poor heart health outcomes. It can lead to high blood pressure, heart failure or stroke. Excessive drinking can also contribute to cardiomyopathy, a disorder that affects the heart muscle. 

Heavy drinking might cause problems but what defines moderate? Moderate...

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Sober Is Sexy

Uncategorized Feb 03, 2020

There should be no question that #soberissexy after the 2020 Super Bowl. It started out with the beautiful Demi Lovato singing the national anthem. It's no secret that Demi has struggled with addiction. Demi has been transparent about her journey. She is not alone, as more than 1 in 7 people over age 12 struggle with addiction or substance abuse.

A few weeks ago Demi hit the stage for the first time in over 2 years when she shared an emotional performance at the Grammy Awards.

Last night at the Super Bowl her dream of singing the national anthem came true. Her hard work and recovery paid off as she reflected on a tweet from 10 years ago stating one day she would perform this song in front of this audience.

Demi is a great role model for anyone in recovery. She continues to get up and try again. She is a great example of talent, resilience, and humanness. 

The next act was the halftime show, which started with a spicy number from Shakira. Shakira has received praise, awards...

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Beer...for the Health of It

Uncategorized Jan 28, 2020

Getting onboard with an alcohol free lifestyle is getting easier thanks to the increase of low or no alcohol beverages on the market these days. Nielsen CGA reports that the demand for these drinks will increase in 2020 and beyond. The younger generations are  leading the change with a growing wellness mindset.

The reasons people drink and the reasons people quit drinking are as varied and unique as the consumers. 

The NA drink trend however, is expected to continue.  Forbes reports 20% of Americans are considering sober months like Dry January and Sober October. There was a 26% increase in non-alcoholic beer volume nationwide over the Fourth of July holiday. 

Athletes are embracing the non alcoholic beer trend at the end of a work out for the anti-inflammatory properties of hops, and digestive benefits. Low and zero alcohol beer does not dehydrate you and may even increase your immune system by fighting off bacteria and disease.   

NPR reported...

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