I avoid horror films.
I’ve never seen Nightmare on Elm Street or the Jason series.
Even the hokey Scream films freaked me out a bit.
Bottom line, I don’t do scary.

And then, because I love poetry and I’m part of the kick-ass Read Write Poem community; (founded by the fabulous Dana Guthrie) I agreed to review At night, the dead by Lisa Ciccarello.

I was forced to face my nightmarish fears, as Ciccarello calls the dead out, revels in their beauty and isn’t at all bashful about the freakishness of it all.

The dead lose nothing. Here is this curtain. Everything they ever wanted: the window view, soap that floats, someone pressing down hard. Lips made out of paper. A smile that shines (just a flame at his mouth & so what). In the dark there’s the swamp & the sound of the swamp & the lightning that balls above it. The dead want to grow here, the dead plant the bad vegetables that rot before they eat them. I want a space beneath the boards, something I can put in the floor, I want a root cellar full of fruit that lasts. He knows it’s not enough: home. With each exhale our hands move farther apart.

Ciccarello dances lightly around what we’re all afraid of – death and the dead. And suddenly its not so scary, suddenly it’s rather (dare I say it) fascinating. That’s not to say some of the poems featured in this chapbook didn’t send shivers up my spine; they did. But, that’s what good poetry is meant to do – make you feel. Even if that feeling results in keeping all the lights in the house on, 24/7.

At night, the dead is a perfect gift for any lover of Halloween and all things ghoolish. In fact, you should probably order one now for your upcoming Halloween party. Or if you happen to love horror, you will love this lyrical, creepy compilation of all things dead.

Happy Reading!


P.S. This review is part of the Read Write Poem virtual book tour. Love it!

Posted by Heather Kristian Strang in Uncategorized Read More

Please join me for a reading of Anatomy of the Heart: Love Poems as part of the North Coast Writers Series in Seaside, Ore.

Sept. 19, 2009

12pm – 2pm

Seaside Public Library
1131 Broadway
Seaside, Ore.

In addition, poet and writer Edith Lee Schwartz will share from her latest book, My Mother’s Trunk: Poems & Essays.

I look forward to seeing you there!

Much love & blessings,

Posted by Heather Kristian Strang in Uncategorized Read More

I don’t typically eat cold cereal for breakfast. But, when I’m craving carbs and I’m looking for a healthier fix – I turn to cereal. It’s a great late dinner option (and you’ll fall right to sleep afterwards!) or weekend breakfast/snack treat.

Nature’s Path is my absolute favorite brand.
I mixed it up a bit this time and tried some of the EnviroKidz products – Koala Crisp (the BEST cereal EVER!) and Peanut Butter & Chocolate. With fruit and unsweetened almond milk – this is a fantastic treat. It’s a lot like dessert – only way less sugar!

The Organic Honey’d Corn Flakes are fantastic for a weekend breakfast treat or if you want to change things up a bit.

Enjoy and let me know what you think!
I used bananas, blueberries, strawberries, flaxseeds and almond milk as accessories for these tasty cereals. They also make a great dry snack when you need a sweet fix, without all the sugar.

Happy Eating!
Heather 🙂

Posted by Heather Kristian Strang in Uncategorized Read More

We have great news! This blog has been re-created as The Metaphysical Menu. You can catch all of the amazing recipes here. We can’t wait to see you there! Xo

Crockpot Gluten/Dairy-Free & Low Sugar Brownies

1 package The Cravings Place Ooey Gooey Brownie Mix

1.5 c nut butter (if using soy nut butter, mix in a teaspoon of agave to make it creamier)

1 c vanilla soy milk

1 c shredded unsweetened coconut

1 c chopped walnuts

1/2 c carob chips

Mix the brownie mix in the crockpot. Add chocolate chunks once stirred in. Smooth out so flat in the bottom of the crockpot. Using a spatula, smooth nut butter over chocolate brownie mix. Pour soy milk over top, then add coconut, walnuts and carob chips. Place cover on top and cook on low for 3 hours or until brownies pull away from the sides of the crockpot.

Posted by Heather Kristian Strang in Uncategorized Read More

My reading in Salem, Ore. for Third Thursday Poets was a huge success! The bookstore sold out of my books and the people in Salem were so gracious and lovely. I had an absolute blast! Thank you to Maureen of Third Thursday Poets (you rock!) and Joanna at Tea Party Bookshop. And of course, a BIG shout-out to Jen Powers – my bestest friend – for taking video and then keeping the celebration going. Thank you Elaine & Alex for showing up and taking photos. Muah!

Stay tuned for my next reading, Sept. 19th at the Seaside Library from 12-2p. Woo!

Much love & blessings,
Heather 🙂

Posted by Heather Kristian Strang in Uncategorized Read More


Third Thursday Poets

Third Thursday Poets is a monthly series celebrating the art of poetry and giving prominent area writers a chance to share their favorite poetry, whether it’s their own or someone else’s.


V a c a t i o n

When: Thursday, August 20, 2009, from 5:30 p.m. – 7:00 p.m.

Where: The Tea Party Bookshop, 420 Ferry St., SE, Salem, OR 97301

Please join us as TTP celebrates idyllic August with Heather Strang

Heather Strang is a writer, poet and coach. Her writing has appeared in blogs, books and a host of print and online publications, including 20-Something Manifesto, Four and Twenty, Women’s eNews, The Oregonian, Amaze Magazine, NW Women’s Journal and many others. In addition, Heather teaches workshops on a variety of conscious living topics. When she’s not writing, you’ll find her meditating on the beach, creating new recipes and exploring the possibilities of the Universe. To learn more, visit: www.HeatherStrang.com.

As a special summer treat, the TTP Open Micers will also be featured this month. There will be a sign-up sheet at the door or please e-mail maureen@thirdthursdaypoets.org to be placed on the list.

For more information, please contact Maureen Clifford @ maureen@thirdthursdaypoets.org

Posted by Heather Kristian Strang in Uncategorized Read More

OMG – this is a fantastically light and delicious summer dinner. You will love it! It takes a bit of prep time, but even without a long marinade time, this dish turns out incredibly well.

Coconut Fish
Serves 2

6 white fish fillets (I used Tilapia – it was perfect)
8 oz. unsweetened coconut milk
4 limes

Place fish fillets in glass baking dish. Pour coconut milk on top of fish so that fillets are fully submerged. Squeeze the juice of 4 limes over the fillets. Cover with foil and place in the refrigerator for 1 hour (or more based on your time availability). Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Bake uncovered for 35 minutes or until fish is cooked through.

Happy Eating!
xoHeather 🙂

Posted by Heather Kristian Strang in Uncategorized Read More

Read Write Poem has gone all social networking crazy on us.
And guess what?

It’s awesome!

Check out my Poetry as Healing Group and be sure to join. We will be sharing poetry and discussing it’s healing effects.

And even if you don’t join my group, sign up on Read Write Poem. You’ll network with other cool writers and be able to participate in a variety of forums and groups.

Look forward to seeing you online,
xoHeather 🙂

Posted by Heather Kristian Strang in Uncategorized Read More

This book is a must! Be sure to check it out. And remember, support independent authors!

No Wheat, No Dairy, No Problem!

Culinary expert develops recipes for those like her with food allergies and sensitivities

SAN FRANCISCOHere it is: a cookbook with more than 150 wheat-free, dairy-free and refined-sugar-free recipes. These aren’t exotic, they’re everyday things that we all want to eat, including chili, meatballs, Bourguignon, stroganoff, meatloaf, mashed potatoes, fried chicken, and desserts like puddings, ice cream, cakes, cheesecake, cookies, cream puffs, chocolate truffles, and more!

Culinary expert and cookbook author Lauren Hoover gives a combination of familiar, healthy ingredients, with alternatives and substitutes for additional food allergies, sensitivities, and intolerance, in No Wheat, No Dairy, No Problem, (published by iUniverse). With educational components including dairy and wheat names to look for on labels, helpful hints and professional secrets, safety and sanitation, resources and Web sites for products and additional ingredient information, this cookbook is invaluable to anyone struggling with food allergies or sensitivity to wheat and dairy and intolerance to sugar, or anyone who desires healthy alternatives.

Using naturally healthy, familiar and easy-to-find ingredients like coconut milk and almond milk, agave nectar and oat flour, the recipes have been created and tested by this traditionally trained chef with 15 years experience. No Wheat, No Dairy, No Problem is written with very clear directions and detailed step-by-step instructions with a bit of humor and non-cooking tips too.

Lauren graduated from The California Culinary Academy where she was classically trained, and went onto specialize in Pastry. Some of the places she worked along her culinary career include: La Folie, Hyatt and Marriott resorts, Fairmont Hotel, Bally’s Hotel and Casino, Wente Brother’s Winery. Lauren also worked at The San Francisco Chronicle and Veggie Life Magazine where she published, tested recipes, product testing, food styling, cookbook etc…

She went on to teach culinary school in California after working on the East Coast and Switzerland. While earning a psychology degree she discovered and developed her deep desire to help improve other people’s lives through writing this cookbook.

Eric Tucker, Executive Chef of Millennium Restaurant says, “A very informative and appealing book that everyone who loves creative, healthy cuisine will love whether you can or cannot eat wheat and dairy. A broad range of recipes from simple and earthy to sexy and decadent.” Alisa Fleming of Go Dairy Free.org says, “Lauren Hoover applied her expertise and own experience to create this cookbook filled with tantalizing recipes. Her use of natural ingredients and unwillingness to sacrifice an ounce of flavor has resulted in this delicious compilation of Southern comfort food, elegant entertaining and seductive desserts that will make you forget what isn’t inside.”

Visit www.NoWheatNoDairyNoProblem.com for more information.

Posted by Heather Kristian Strang in Uncategorized Read More

Anatomy of the Heart: Love Poems was a true work of my heart. It feels pretty amazing to have it out in the world right now!

I’ve received incredible responses from readers across all demographics – from a 27-year-old editor who’s heart ached when reading The Weekend to a 40ish writer who spent an evening reading my poetry out loud with his girlfriend and a good bottle of wine. Thank you for all the lovely words – it still blows me away when I hear people are reading (and enjoying) my work!

I thought you should also know that Anatomy of the Heart: Love Poems is available at two bookstores right now – in addition to being featured on Amazon, BarnesandNoble.com and Booksamillion.com.

Pick up your copy of Anatomy of the Heart at:

Godfather’s Books in Astoria, Ore.
New Renaissance in Portland, Ore.

Soon to be featured (as of Aug. 20th) in:
Tea Party Bookshop in Salem, Ore.

Oh, and check out this lovely post from coach (and upcoming author of Oh, Shift! Jennifer Powers).

Spread the love!
Order your copy today and pass it along.

Much love & Happy Writing,
xoHeather 🙂

Posted by Heather Kristian Strang in Uncategorized Read More