Everything is useful.

Yesterday, I had a simple but strong craving for fresh carrot-apple juice.  I pulled 5 carrots and 2 apples from the ‘fridge.  Juiced ’em, and chugged.  Mmmmm.  As I cleaned the juicer, I stared at the bright orange, red and ivory contents.  Honestly, the carrot-apple pulp seemed too useful to compost.

It looked like a tasty treat waiting to be made.  Whenever I juice, I have thought that about my left-over fruit and veggie fiber.  But this time, I actually followed-through.  I scooped out the the pulp, tossed it in a bowl…

Stirred in walnuts, shredded coconut, cinnamon, maple syrup, sea salt, cayenne pepper, spring water and flax seeds. (Sorry, I don’t measure! I just mix to taste.)

Spread out over 2 dehydrator trays…

pulled some bars with soft, muffin-like texture, and dried others longer for crunchy-cracker effect.

Voila! Enjoyed Spicy Carrot Bars!

It was satisfying to get +2 uses out of that original desire for juice.  (I also had a bonus functional-fantasy about “Carrot Stands” in every Chicago public school that makes fresh carrot juice available in the mornings, and mini carrot-cakes as afternoon snacks.  Any CPS collaborators out there?)

Well, all of this circular thinking reminded me of a foundational belief I have, which is that nothing is wasted.  Invert that into positive-speak, and you’ve got “everything is useful.”  I believe that.  I am helped by the idea that all experiences have some inherent value in them.  All heartbreak comes with a gift for your soul.  Or, perhaps, from your soul.  But a gift nonetheless.

Perspective is everything.  How do you:

  • repurpose
  • redesign
  • renew
  • restore


  • trash
  • loss
  • hurt
  • fear

How have you turned pain into a pearl?  Or, if you prefer, carrot pulp into snack bars? Domestic or dramatic, I’d love to learn what you do to experience Life’s fullness.


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3 Responses to “Everything is useful.”

  1. Evette Says:

    Hi Erika,

    Great post! It really struck me for some reason. My mind went back to one of the things that I accomplished a few years ago:

    Learning how to drive–I always admired other people who could drive. They just seemed so in control, confident, etc. I wanted to learn but was terrified of getting into accidents. One day, I decided to learn how to drive because I was tired of waiting on the bus, asking for rides, etc. So my boyfriend’s dad gave me lessons and I even took a couple of lessons with a driving school because I still didn’t feel ready, but my boyfriend’s dad thought I was. I researched cars online; I was ogling cars as I walked down the street and rode the bus. I was into the Law of Attraction back then so I visualized myself getting my license and driving a car. I created affirmations and even a vision board (I cut out pictures of cars I liked and glued them to the board; I’d look at it often and believed I had my license and a car).

    And I got both :-)

    Sometimes even when I’m driving around today, I still can’t believe how far I’ve come. It feels great to be able to do something that I was scared to do years ago. It also feels great when others trust me (family members) to drive them somewhere.

    • Erika Harris Says:

      Evette, this is so cool! I love how proactive you were… how you kept your desire active and in front you… how you actualized it in 3D. You inspire me, lady. Bravo!

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