Beach Yoga & Pope Wisdom


Certified teacher, Maria Lauren – Yoga posture, Half Lord of the Fishes – Quote

Surviving the change of seasons does not only apply to the weather but to the seasons of our life. Change, whether expected or unexpected takes an understanding….

“Understanding is not taking a stand. It is twisting away from pre-conceived notions. It is taking a breath. It is an opening of the heart with a smile.” ~ Maria Lauren (Maria Elena Alberici – Riccio)

September is one of the hottest times of the year in Southern California with the Pacific Ocean hitting its warmest temperatures. As summer ends, I must admit to getting a feeling of urgency for beach activities including the desire for stillness which is found through the practice of Yoga postures.

The beach is the perfect setting to renew the understanding of our body, mind and spirit and our connection to the world around us. The Yoga pose, Half Lord of the Fishes (pictured above) opens up the area around the heart as you breathe deeply. The twisting helps to energize and stretch your spine as well as the shoulders, hips and neck while increasing the circulation in your internal organs of the liver and kidneys. Holding this posture may also help your digestion and elimination. Now, that should put a smile on your face! :-)

* For a modification, you may extend your bottom leg if that is more comfortable for you.



Certified teacher, Marianna Riccio demonstrates the Yoga pose, Lord of the Dance with a motivational quote.

My daughter, Marianna Riccio, also like to do Yoga at the beach…

Marianna: “The Lord of the Dance is a Yoga pose that helps with focus, flexibility and balance. This pose opens up the hip flexors, the back, chest and front of the body while developing range of motion in the shoulder. It also strengthens my ankle which was severely injured in high school and the arch of my standing foot.”

“In life, sometimes we need to grab on to what is behind in order to grasp a stronger body and mind, gazing upon our future with optimistic eyes.” ~ Marianna Riccio


Thank you, Marianna.

The exercise practice of Yoga can benefit everyone with better well-being. Yoga is not a religion to me but it can be spiritual, especially when my mind focuses on my Christian-based beliefs. When I breathe the breath of life, I remember in gratitude that my body is a temple entrusted to me by my loving Creator. The deep breathing has a meditative effect and is a principal component when anyone attempts to do the stretches and balances in Yoga properly.

The Powerful Message of the Pope – Renew…


Pope Francis brings a powerful message of wisdom, happiness and renewal to the USA.

This month, a breath of fresh air for our country was the visit of Pope Francis to America. His presence brings an open smile of love as a good shepherd welcomes his sheep. His message is full of compassion and wisdom, a true blessing to the people of our land and the whole human race.

The Pope’s Ten Tips for a Happier Life

“Live and let live. Be giving of yourself to other. Proceed calmly…”

I was born in Philadelphia and raised with a Catholic education, so I ponder on the fact that the Pope’s last mass was in my home town. I would like to share a few of the Pope’s holy words including a question addressed to his flock: “What about you? I encourage you to be renewed in the joy of that first encounter with Jesus and to draw from that joy renewed fidelity and strength… and I ask you all to pray for me.”

Pope Francis last mass in America – Fox News

Powerful, Positive Visualizations & Bible Meditations

Relax-n-Renew (Samples, CD, Downloads)

September is national Yoga month. It is also a reminder to renew your body with exercise, your spirit with the power of prayer and your mind with positive meditations while going with the flow of life.

Wishing you love, wisdom, joy and renewal,

Maria Lauren, aka Maria Elena Alberici – Riccio

Your Powerful LIFE blog

My Webiste

Marianna’s Website

 Maria-Lauren-Alberici-Riccio-motivation-entertainer-fitness-You-Got-The-PowerYour Powerful LIFE blog is about Living, Inspiration, Fitness, Entertainment… 

Statements on this site do not represent the views or policies of my employer, past or present, or any other organization with which I may be affiliated. All content is copyrighted.



Pomegranate jam and sweet escapes

Pomegranate Tree

Pomegranates are an Intriguing and Powerful Fruit that stirs up the imagination.

As I make my Pomegranate Jam, I think of the Shakespearean phrase, ‘Nightly she sings on yon pomegranate tree…’ and the memory of playing the part of ‘Juliet’ when I was eighteen years old without ever seeing a pomegranate tree or the fruit itself. This is odd because I was raised as a vegetarian. Yet decades later, there is a pomegranate tree growing in my backyard.

Pomegranates are a Powerful Antioxidant!

The pomegranate looks similar to an apple on the outside but inside the skin you’ll find a multitude of tiny berries that are beneficial to your health and beauty.


Pomegranates are good for you!

Can you eat the seeds in each juicy morsel? Yes, chew it good, the seeds contain oil, an isoflavones (also contained in soy) so it becomes creamy in your mouth. The juice squirting in your mouth from each berry is quenching and soothing to your throat. Also, feel good knowing that you are getting nutrients including 5 polyunsaturated fatty acid that helps with cell regeneration.

Picking a Sweet Pomegranate… Beware of Creepy Bugs!

I always pick fruit at the market that have markings on the skin because I know the bugs like sweet things too. Because of our hot summer, my pomegranates were already bursting on the tree. This made the seeds easy to get out. However, it invites creepy large bugs. Yuck!

The bugs looked slow-moving so I carefully ventured into the tree to pick a pomegranate. What just flew above my head? Was it one of these bugs? Yikes, they fly! The Leaffooted Plant Bug was well camouflaged within the tree!

I ran to my house to get my cell phone so I could take a picture of these little critters. Can you see the creepy crawlers? It won’t be easy to see the bugs but that’s what makes it fun! Are you game?

Play with a friend. Where’s ‘Waldo,’ the bug? (Reminiscent of the children books, ‘Where’s Waldo’ or in some countries, ‘Where’s Wally.’) Hint: In this collage of two pictures, there is a bug in each picture. If you have trouble finding the bugs, you can click on the picture to enlarge it. ;-)


Leaffooted Plant Bugs in the Pomegranate Trees!

Natural Pomegranate Jam Recipe

(made with Lemonade and Pectin)

This simple pomegranate jam recipe contains no added sugar! It is sweetened with a little honey and lemon aid that I made from fresh lemon juice (lemons from my tree). Of course, you’ll also need fresh pomegranate seeds and pectin (pictured).


Natural Pomegranate Jam with Pectin


I suggest that you put on an apron so you don’t stain your clothing and wear tight fitted latex gloves (if not allergic to latex) to protect your nails.

Soak and Separate Pomegranate:

I soak each cracked pomegranate in water to cleanse it and then put it in water again to get the seeds out while the pomegranates are immersed in water. This is an easy way to loosen the seeds because the seeds sink and the pulp floats. Then, I put the pomegranate berries/seeds through a strainer, discard any unwanted remnants and keep only the best. One large pomegranate yields about one cup or less of berries/seeds.

~ This recipe makes three cups of my Natural Pomegranate Jam.

~ First open the package of Pomona’s Universal Pectin (pictured) containing no sugar or preservatives. The information /instructions that are found in the inside of the package is plentiful and can be confusing, so I have made it easier here:


3 cups of lightly mashed pomegranate berries/seeds

1 cup of fresh lemonade (lemon juice and water sweetened with stevia and honey or agave)

2 teaspoons of calcium water (powder is in package – 1/2 teaspoon of powder to 1/2 cup water)

1/2 cup of honey * Ikaria honey has many health benefits; it is rich so use less.

2 teaspoons of pectin (powder in package)

Glass jars with tight lids (let jars and lids sit in hot water until needed)


In a bowl, add 1/4 cup of  lemon aide with the mashed pomegranates and keep the mixture on the side for later. Meanwhile, put 3/4 cup of juice and honey in a pan with the calcium water and boil separately. Then, put this mixture in a blender and add pectin until powder dissolves in juice. Put pomegranate mixture in a pan and bring to a boil. Pour the pectin mixture from the blender into the pan and return to a boil. Remove mixture from heat and fill the warm, empty jars with the jam mixture, leave some room at the top and screw the lids on tightly. When the mixture cools, it will harden into a jam. Put jam in to the refrigerator when the jars are cool. Enjoy!


Powerful Connections & Sweet Escapes

No matter how far or near, the power of love connects us to those who have touched our hearts. That wonderful energy triggers our memory and senses just by listening to a song or eating food.

Making Pomegranate Jam renews my connection to a special friend, Robyn Whatley – Kahn who is living on the island of Ikaria in Greece. She specializes in the quality of Archaeologous guided tours to the area where pomegranates first grew, namely Turkey, where some scholars claim is the location of the Garden of Eden.

Below, I put together a few pictures that Robyn sent me for a glimpse of the places, people and things that can fill your senses while on an Archaeologous Turkey tour!


Views of culture sites in Turkey – Quality tours and healing works with Robyn Whatley-Kahn

Turkey is loaded with biblical history. Noah’s Ark landed on Mount Ararat (Agri Dagi) in Eastern Turkey. Ephesus in Turkey is the burial ground of St. John which is now a huge Basilica of St. John (in ruins and excavations) When walking in Ephesus, you are walking the footsteps of Apostle Paul, Mother Mary as well as Cleopatra, Alexander the Great…

Robyn and I have a past of traveling and entertaining together in the 70’s girl group, The Golddiggers. Now, we are both  involved in healing, I am an exercise coach/therapist and Robyn is a Body Talk practitioner. The bonds of the past powerfully unite us.


Book: Beyond Our Wildest Dreams and The Golddiggers during the mid- 1970’s

Pictured are Maria Lauren, Dean Martin, Linda Eichberg – (top row) Maria Lauren, Linda Eichberg: Alberici Sisters, Joyce Garro, Peggy Gohl, (bottom row) Patti Gribow and Robyn Whatley-Kahn.
In the book, Beyond Our Wildest Dream, my sister, Linda Eichberg and I fondly remember times as members of The Golddiggers during the groovy 70’s. As insiders, we tell backstage stories of entertaining with icons including the Rat Pack. Those who were there, our “Golddigger” sisters and other notables share their viewpoint giving a broad perspective to this special era in showbiz history.
It’s a fun time of sisterhood and friendship when the TV Variety Show was prime and celebrity legends ruled the Las Vegas strip.
Our readers have found it to be a sweet escape!

‘Within one pomegranate there are many berries/seeds that burst of a sweet tartness, just like the experiences and people that full my life.’ – Maria Elena Alberici – Riccio

Wishing you the sweetness of life,
Maria Lauren, aka Maria Elena Alberici – Riccio
Your Powerful LIFE blog
 cropped-maria_lauren_fitness_expert.jpgYour Powerful LIFE blog is about Living, Inspiration, Fitness, Entertainment…
Statements on this site do not represent the views or policies of my employer, past or present, or any other organization with which I may be affiliated. I have not been paid to promote any product or service on this post. All content is copyrighted.