Time To Blossom

If you’re wishing and waiting for things to be better, you are wasting your time and your precious life force! It is essential to make peace with this moment and be grateful for all the blessings in front of you right now.

 

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The time to blossom is today, not sometime in the future when we believe there will be no distractions or roadblocks. At this very moment we have beauty flowering in our lives, even if circumstances seem dim. Having a vision for the future that differs from our present status can be inspiring but it can also keep us from fully participating in this hour and seeing with fresh eyes the Divine at work.

Shift to Gratitude

Unforseen tragedies do happen and must be processed and then let go so we can make room to receive what is meant for us now. So, here I go with my personal story…

Our beloved family patriarch, my father in law Norman Eichberg, passed on recently. His sister also passed away a couple of weeks after him. Norman and his sister, Hilda, left an incredible loving family and legacy. My focus lately has been holding on to gratitude for that.

 

 

My husband’s father was a leaders, leader. He was larger than life with a booming voice. Norman loved telling jokes, he was gregarious and intelligent. Steven’s dad was a compassionate man who had a thirst for life up to the day he died. He lived an amazing 97 years.

 

shirley Norman young

Steven’s parents, Norman and Shirley

 

Being active in the community and a vocal leader in the Jewish community, Norman and his wife, Shirley were one of the founding families of Stephen S. Weis Temple along with, Rabbi Zeldin. This notable man also passed away within a week of my father in law. Stephen S. Weis is a Los Angeles landmark and grew to become one of the largest Temples in the United States. Norman served two terms as President of the Temple.

 

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Norman Eichberg was a World War II veteran, an officer in the Army Chemical Corps. After the war he became a successful business man and grew a well-respected insurance company, Eichberg Associates. He was also a humanitarian and devoted family man.

 

Norman boys youth

Norman and his three sons

 

Steven’s Aunt Hilda had a heart of gold. She was like a second mother to him and his brothers. When they were young boys, Hilda helped raise them while their mother was working. Hilda was fit and athletic; she had a brilliant, witty personality.

 

Norman Eichberg with his sons, Steven & Peter and sister, Hilda Markus

 

My husband, Steven, cannot remember a night when his parents did not kiss him good night. Both of his parents were loving and non-judgemental. Norman and Shirley opened their hearts and their home to all kinds of people without reservation, including children with behavioral challenges in partnership with Vista Del Mar Child and Family Services. These special children got to experience living with the unconditional love that was expressed in the Eichberg family, giving them the healing and life skills they desperately needed.

 

 

It’s easy to get stuck in the pain of loss. Practicing gratitude daily, will keep us moving forward. We heal this moment in time by calmly centering ourselves and finding the place of our joy and happiness.

Celebrate life and count your blessings. It is a powerful way to consistently raise your vibration to attract what ever it is that your heart desires. What you focus on grows!

 

Eichberg Family group

 

“The present moment is filled with joy and happiness. If you are attentive, you will see it.” – Thích Nhất Hạnh

 

What are you waiting for?

Gratefully yours, Linda

 

A Loving Celebration of the Life of Norman Eichberg by Steven Eichberg

Our father Norman Ira Eichberg passed away at the age of 97 and a half years young. He was older in body, but his infectious laughter and sense of humor kept him young and able to cope with whatever came his way. From the time we were little boys our dad always wanted to spend time with us in whatever activities we would join. Our first was the Indian Guides and dad accompanied us to every meeting and eventually became chief of our tribe. Next was Cub Scouts and dad became our den leader attending all of our meetings and events. Next we joined the Boy Scouts and he became our co Pack leader along with the legendary Lloyd Bridges.
When Pete and I began to venture into sports dad and mom went to every game. Dad eventually coached then managed our various teams. Our father was always active in our lives.
Dad and mom took us on vacations every summer. Whether to Yosemite National Park, Palm Springs, Dear Valley, The Grand Teton, San Diego the whole family always had a ball. It wasn’t where we were that was important, but that we were all there together.
The Eichberg family was as close-knit as any family could be. There was so much love between all of us we grew up emulating our dad and mom by trying to spread it always and to everyone.
Our father was humorous, extremely bright and had a God-given talent to speak almost every major language in its exact accent. He would have us and friends and family laughing hysterically when he broke into all his different dialects. Up until the day he died he had the nurses and staff at the Vi skilled nursing residence laughing at his jokes and his still funny and remembered accents.
Norman Eichberg served his country as a Lieutenant in the army in World War II. He was eventually stationed in Paris, France where he was handpicked by General Dwight D. Eisenhower to command the allied forces chemical corp. He came back from the war to his wife, three children and began the next three-quarters of his amazing life.
We love you dad and will always miss you, but knowing you are now with grandpa and grandma, Uncle Alvin and most important our brother, Rob, along with your not suffering from melanomas, hip pain and other things you always just shrugged off, gives me some comfort.
RIP Dad

 

Photo memories of our family patriarch are presented in this beautiful slide show by Alison Eichberg.

 

 

“Having hope will give you courage. You will be protected and will rest in safety.” 
– Job 11:18

 

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Going Beyond Thanksgiving Into Gratitude and Grace

It was only a month ago, but it seems longer, since I wrote my last blog about walking meditation. It was a pause that refreshed and prepared me for all the hustle of this month.

So far, November has been full of activity and good things. First of all, there was the continuing celebration of my daughters engagement. And now preparations being made for Lindsay and Ben’s wedding day.

Love Is In The Air

Lindsay - Ben Photo-60_

 

It has been a joy to everyone who knows Lindsay and Ben, to see how their love for each other has grown. The grace God has given them, by drawing good people to them on their journey, has made my heart swell with gratitude.

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Congratulations Ben and Lindsay!

 

The Season of Family and Thanksgiving

This year Thanksgiving fell on the birthday of my mother in law, Shirley. We had a double celebration! At 97 years young she is a delight to be with. Mom often talks about her older friends who are still active. “We have a 106 yer old man here (Laguna Woods) who still golf’s at 106 years old, she told me.

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Nana Shirley with her grandchildren and great grandchild, Riley

 

My sister-in-law, Alison and my niece Erin, hosted the festivities with their usual graciousness and artistic flair! They bring the best of Pinterest and “Martha Stewart Living” together for a fabulous event.

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Erin and Alison and their beautiful Thanksgiving table

I am so grateful to be on the receiving end of their grace and gift for hospitality. Even though I am family, I still look on myself as one who is receiving grace, undeserved favor, not earned. 

 

Giving and Receiving Grace

Grace begins when one person is full and another is empty. One person has and the other has not. “Then grace comes into action as the emptiness of one is filled up by the fullness of the other. What we do not have is supplied by what he has.” ¹

Whether we are giving or receiving grace, it can become sour or boastful when humility is not present. “The notion of “self-made persons” who deserve all the success and wealth they’ve received is simply wrong. Indeed, “deservedness” is the opposite of gratitude, even if it occasionally produces prayers of thanksgiving.” ²

 

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The Greatest Gratitude

Being thankful can often times just be an expression of good manners but real gratitude, received in grace, goes beyond the expression of “thank you” to a feeling of awe and blessedness for God’s goodness through people and circumstances.

Speaking to my youngest brother Al on the phone this week brought this all home in my heart. Al has served as the Director of Worship and Music at Living Rock Bible Church for over 18 years. His beautiful family also serves in leading worship and ministering the grace of God to their church.

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The Alberici family

Al is not only my brother but also my Christian God son. We have a very special connection.

Almost every week Al sings about the most precious grace of God, the debt of our sin that was paid by Jesus Christ. A perfect sacrifice was given, that brought heaven down to earth. The curtain separating us from God was removed, giving us access to our Father God through His Son.

In this pure state of worship, gratitude and grace, my heart becomes full, not with pride or deservedness but with  humility and blessed joy. I am filled with an incredible lightness of being that actually restores me to God and changes me from within. 

Thanks be to God for his indescribable gift! – 2 Corinthians 9: 15

From my heart to yours, be blessed, Linda

 

Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand. And we boast in the hope of the glory of God. – Romans 5: 1-2

 

Footnotes:

1. https://www.desiringgod.org/messages/grace-gratitude-and-the-glory-of-god

2. http://www.patheos.com/blogs/marcusborg/2013/11/gratitude-one-of-the-most-important-virtues/#cM0CHR8bcoShA0MX.99

 

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Writing Therapy

PROCESSING GRIEF

At first the pain was too much. I didn’t want to think or feel. I wanted to be numb and repress my emotions. But strangely, now I am now finding comfort in the opposite. I need to talk about him, write down memories and remember the special moments we had together.

Processing grief is like an ocean, rolling up and down unpredictably. Submerged until you can’t breathe, you’re almost drowning and then you are finally able to come up for air, for hope. My brother-in-law, Umberto, passed away this month after a long battle with cancer.

Writing as Therapy

I know writing and journaling is good therapy for many traumatic situations, so why not for loss and death. Actually, there is science behind writing to help with the grieving process. It doesn’t have to be public writing, like a blog. Any kind of writing has therapeutic power.

Umberto

umberto-young-man_He loved cooking, food and people. As a young man, Umberto studied at a culinary school. His passion landed him in Monte Carlo, working as a waiter at the Hotel de Paris. One day, a friend who was on the personal waitstaff of the Royal Family of Monaco became sick and Umberto was asked to take his place. The Royals enjoyed his service so much they ask for him to be their permanent personal waiter. It’s no wonder, Umberto was loaded with good looks, personality and culinary acumen.

Umberto ended up in Philadelphia where he opened a successful restaurant downtown, The Monte Carlo Living Room. The restaurant received much critical acclaim and was known as one of the top restaurants in Philadelphia.

During this time, he met and married my sister, Alane. Alane was a journalist and an assistant editor of an epicurian food magazine. One of her assignments was to write a story about Umberto and his famous restaurant. That was how they met. It was love a first sight. Together they had two boys, Umberto Jr. and Marco.

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Creativity

Umberto was extremely creative: he liked to design. He built and designed an Italian restaurant in Ardmore that he converted from a bank. He retained parts of the bank to give the restaurant a special flair and used the bank’s vault as a private dining area. He had a huge imagination!

Hospitality

Some of my fondest memories of Umberto was of him managing at his restaurant, Primavera, or entertaining with his family at his home. Sometimes he would personally craft special off the menu dishes for me in the restaurant’s kitchen. He was an artist with food and he aimed to please. I loved the twinkle in his eye when he would beak out a bottle of rare wine from his cellar to share with us. Umberto’s face would beam joyfully as he described the qualities and nuances of the wine. He was more than a fine restaurateur, he had the gift of hospitality.

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What Say You?

Umberto’s favorite family greeting was, “What say you”? It was customarily delivered with a chuckle and a smile. But it was his Italian accent that made the phrase so charming and memorable. Umberto could light up a room!

IL SUO RETAGGIO E’ ANOCORA TRA NOI – His Legacy Is Still With Us

Friends and Family

Always a jovial host, Umberto delighted in gourmet food, fine wine and conversation. He loved to see people having a good time, eating and enjoying each other’s company. My brother-in-law loved his friends and family.

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His son’s Umberto and Marco

We celebrated many family occasions at Ristorante Primavera in Wayne, Pa. It was the spot for making great memories. Alane and Umberto were so gracious about letting the family use their restaurant.

umberto-restaurant

Our nephew,Dylan’s Christening party at the Primavera

Not too long ago my brothers and sisters and I, esteemed my mother for her 85th birthday at the restaurant. Here I am enjoying a laugh and a hug with Umberto at her birthday party.

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Umberto’s personality was larger than life!

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It was a rare treat when Umberto and Alane joined my husband, Steven and I on vacation in Kauai. Vacations are extremely difficult to plan for busy restaurant owners. They were both dedicated, hard workers.

Though they lived on different coasts Steve always had a special bond and relationship with his brother-in-law. They were close in age, only a few days apart. They were joined at the heart.

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Steve and Umberto at the reunion

The Final Days

This past summer, my mother surprised me and all my siblings by inviting us, along with our families, to Florida for vacation. There were over thirty people at the gathering. It was a great reunion on the beach!

That get-together was the last quality time my family and I spent with Umberto. It was a gift. It wasn’t too long after, he was diagnosed with stage four cancer and had to be hospitalized. We did fly back to Philadelphia to see him in the hospital but by then he was a different man.

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My daughter, Lindsay with her uncle Umberto in Florida

Words can’t adequately describe what I feel for Umberto but it is a good feeling when I look back at all the beautiful times we had together. He added so much joy to my life. For that I am grateful. I always have the comfort of knowing that we both belong to Christ and we will be in His loving arms for eternity.

As you hold your loved ones close this holiday season, focus on gratitude.

The Eichberg family wishes you a happy, healthy and prosperous New Year. All the best for 2017.

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~ Blessings, Linda

“The Lord is close to the brokenhearted; he rescues those whose spirits are crushed.” – Psalm 34: 18 NLT

Food for Body and Soul

November ushers in a bounty of celebrations with friends and family as well as sharing and enjoying food from each other’s tables.

winter squash

With a desire to create a new seasonal dish to share, I concocted a recipe using sweet dumpling squash. The orange-maple flavor compliments the mild taste of the sweet dumpling and makes this recipe a delicious side dish.

Maple-Orange Winter Squash (Vegan)

Ingredients

4 cups cooked and cubed sweet dumpling or other winter squash

1 cup (plus ¼ cup.) caned light coconut milk or coconut milk beverage

1/8 tsp. Nutmeg

1/8 tsp. Pumpkin pie spice

¼ tsp. Cinnamon

3 tbsp. Pure maple syrup

1 tbsp. Coconut oil

2 tsp. Fresh grated organic orange zest

pinch salt

Preparation

1) Cut the sweet dumpling squash in half. Scoop out the seeds and stringy membrane. Place the sliced squash in an oiled pan. Add four tbsp. of water.

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2) Bake squash for 45 minutes at 375. Squash should be soft and almost cooked through. Remove from oven.

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3) After the squash cools, peel off the skin with a sharp knife and cut into ¾ in. cubes.

(Anytime after step 1 through 3, cooked squash can be refrigerated for 1 or 2 days until ready to use)

4) In a sauce pan, add all the ingredients except the orange zest and 1/4 cup of the coconut milk. Cover the pan and cook on medium heat for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.

5) Remove from heat and add the orange zest. (The orange flavor is predominate in this dish so you may want to reserve a 1/2 tsp. of the zest use to adjust to your taste).

6) You can stop here if you like and serve the squash chunky style or add all the ingredients to a blender along with the remaining ¼ cup coconut milk and puree until smooth.

Transfer to a serving dish. If desired add additional maple syrup to taste. Garnish with a dollop of sour cream or toasted pecans.

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Nutrition

Winter Squash is a good source of vitamin A, Vitamin C, magnesium and potassium.

Food For My Soul

Celebrating 95 years!

I have a lovely lady in my life who never fails to say how much she loves me and how much I mean to her.

Mom-95th_My mother-in-law is a spunky woman with a sweet disposition and enthusiastic joy for life. She celebrated her 95th birthday this month!

Shirley is still as sharp as they come. She is taking classes at Saddleback College and she stays fit doing group fitness classes with her 100 year old friend! If you asked her what her secret is to her longevity and quality of life, she will tell you, “it’s LOVE.” My mother-in-law has a huge heart for people. With a fun loving spirit, she regularly walks up to strangers and engages them in conversation.

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My daughter, Lindsay, shares a special bond with her Nana.

Mom frequently tells me how blessed she feels to have wonderful friends and family in her life.  I am equally blessed to have such a terrific mother-in-law.

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I am very grateful for this amazing woman and the beautiful family and extended family she created!

From my heart to yours, happy Thanksgiving and blessings to you all.

~ Linda

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“The Lord is good to everyone; he is merciful to all he has made. Lord, everything you have made will praise you; those who belong to you will bless you… All living things look to you for food, and you give it to them at the right time.” – Psalm 145: 9, 10 & 15 (NCV)

 

© All materials contained within this blog are copyrighted and may not be used without expressed written permission.

Hitting the Sweet Spot – 300 Minutes per Week

If you knew there was something you could do to stave off breast cancer, would you commit to doing it? An association between physical activity and breast cancer is supported by over “100 epidemiologic studies, with strong biologic rationale supporting fat loss as an important mediator of this association.” ¹

Women, particularly postmenopausal women, may derive special benefits from exercise because excess body fat has been associated with increased risk of postmenopausal breast cancer.

I teach group fitness classes at Total Woman Gym + Spa. I have the pleasure of seeing woman transform themselves and get healthy. You can too with consistency and commitment to an exercise program. Do it for yourself and your family. Health is wealth!

October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month, so get up, get out and go!

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Linda Eichberg Group Fitness Instructor with students: Riley, Kim and Sonia.

These are some of the ladies I have taught. Two of them are mother and daughter. It brings a smile to my heart when mothers and daughters exercise together.

Commit To Be  Fit – 60 Minutes 5 Days a Week

In a randomized trial of 400 postmenopausal women who were evenly split into two groups, either 150 minutes or 300 minutes of vigorous exercise per week, the women who exercised more averaged more total weight loss.

Any aerobic activity that raised the heart rate 65% to 75% of heart rate reserve was allowed. Most of the activities involved walking, the elliptical trainer, bicycling, and running. So it doesn’t necessarily mean spending a lot of money to get fit, just the price of some good running shoes.

The results of the study confirm, “our findings of a dose-response effect of exercise on total fat mass and several other adiposity measures including abdominal fat, especially in obese women, provide a basis for encouraging postmenopausal women to exercise at least 300 min/wk, longer than the minimum recommended for cancer prevention.” ²

Putting Fitness and Compassion Into Action

AIDS Walk Los Angeles-2015_

On October 11, I completed a cardio fait accompli at the 2015 AIDS Walk Los Angeles 10K. It was a hot 100 degrees that day. Talk about burning fat!!

Our team raised over $7,500.00 to help APLA with the wonderful work this organization does in educating the community, helping people living with HIV and AIDS research.

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Ready set go!

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The Eichberg family and friends, aka “Team Rob”

We all made it! Hot and tired but what an amazing feeling to know we were part of such a wonderful cause. Erin and Alison are wearing crowns because they were top fundraisers. Way to go ladies!

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My grand nice, Riley at the finish line. I’m so proud of her!

Look who we ran into after the walk, Drew Carey! Drew is a big supporter of the AIDS Walk Los Angeles. He was charming and so sweet to pose for a photo with us after a long day!

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With Drew Carey at 2015 Los Angeles AIDS Walk

My family and friends walked in memory of my brother-in-law, Rob Eichberg and step brother-in-law, David Greenes, both of whom died of AIDS. 

“Each of us is radiant energy and all we truly have to give & receive is love.” – Rob Eichberg Ph. D. ³

Much love, Linda

“Whoever loves his brother lives in the light and there is nothing in him to make him stumble.” – 1 John 1 :10

“You must be compassionate, just as your Father is compassionate.” – Luke 6:36 (NLT)

Footnotes:

1 & 2.

http://oncology.jamanetwork.com/article.aspx?articleid=2396584

3. Rob Eichberg was a  PhD in Psychology. He shared his knowledge, understanding and love with the gay community and their families. His teaching on unconditional love brought wholeness to the broken. He authored the book “Coming Out: An Act of Love” and co-founded, National Coming Out Day.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/National_Coming_Out_Day

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