Hi!, my name is Elena.
Welcome to a place where you can find healthy-ish recipes for happiness.
Let’s Get Happy!
What are we about?
SavorParadise is a research-based Happiness website striving to help guide others to be happy starting from the inside out, not just to be happy but to spread happiness. Join our community on Facebook! We focus on nutrients instead of calories, kindness instead of performance and movement instead of whatever HIIT is (only kind of kidding). I suppose my point is, we love comfort food but we also love to nourish our bodies for long term happiness. Our motto is…everything is a learning experience. keep learning and adjusting.
What does SavorParadise mean?
SavorParadise – A person searching to taste and enjoy food or drink completely, in an idyllic place or state of mind (Happiness).
Why should you subscribe?
This website is for people who much like myself like to stay “in the know” of the latest research on Happiness + Nutrition. We are on a journey to happiness and the latest research shows that happiness is a practice not an end goal. Why wait to be happy, be happy now!
What should you expect?
If you love to learn, take action and are interested in exploring happiness, then this is the place for you!
- Community – Here you will find an encouraging community, all supporting your path to happiness, as well as tips, tricks and challenges. I will share my journey with all of you. Imagine that I am that super bubbly, optimistic friend who always reminds you that you look good even when you feel like you don’t. I will be the biggest supporter of your dreams and want to do whatever I can to help you get there.
- Research – In my posts you will find information on the latest science-based research in regards to the foods you eat, expressing gratitude, getting some exercise, finding out why journaling is so important, and finally figuring out this whole meditation thing while sharing kindness, love and compassion. All measurable roads that have been shown to lead to happiness.
- Analysis – Although I’m still fairly new on my road to happiness, I’ve learned that happiness is a practice and not a destination! As a full-time data analyst with a Master’s degree in Business Intelligence and Analytics, I am used to taking disparate pieces of data and bringing them together to make cohesive conclusions and in most cases to tell a story. I love to use my research and analysis skills to understand the truth about Happiness. Then I can turn around and share that information and help people like you! Using my analyst skills to also breakdown the information into fun newsletters and blog posts.
- Framework – To any other data geeks out there, you will be happy to know that I am using an Agile framework to accomplish this, complete with monthly Sprints and weekly Scrums. Which is data speak for I have organized the practice of happiness into 4 parts…Nutrition, Physical, Mental, and Spiritual. I will then host a Facebook live or a video once a month for a new challenge (to test what we have learned) and will have a weekly check-in (to measure our success!). If you would like a funny way to learn more about what a scrum is, just checkout a little tv show called Silicon Valley (without the kids). My favorite thing about an Agile framework is that once the project is over, there are iterative steps to streamline the process. This means once we find what measures of happiness work for us, we tweak and continuously improve our actions to continue to increase our personal happiness until we become the perfect beacon of happiness.
The Evolution of SavorParadise:
In 2017, I started this personal food blog, learning about the food blogging industry, writing about what was going on in my life and enjoying my mad-scientist skills in the kitchen creating wonderful recipes, one that has appeared on The Food Network!
I started the blog in a search for what I was truly passionate about. At the time, I was struggling with my journey of infertility and wanted a creative outlet, something to keep me busy, and thought I would share my love of cooking and bringing people together. I began by writing about travel (pre-covid of course), entertaining and then making recipes from our travels.
Then, after the loss of my grandmother, I decided to take a year and write about all of the things that she taught my dad and I in the kitchen and also my love of tacos. This blog is still for them.
Which brings us to now. I am pivoting to this passion project I have been working on and off on for years, where I use my analyst skills for sharing information on happiness. Combining my loves (food+analytics+happiness) and helping people, as well as creating an environment and community of happ…ier people.
But what about your taco recipes?
Oh, I will still be giving you guys my best recipes. One thing I have definitely learned is that life is about not going to an extreme on anything. Sometimes you just can’t say no to that plate of pasta, pizza or burger. This path is about loving yourself and incorporating more nutrients into your existing diet and learning about minimizing certain foods that will not make you happy in the long term(or scientifically shown to cause depression).
I also learned that there are two forms of happiness…long term and short term. Short term is that new car, a recent promotion, graduation or chocolate ice cream!! Long term happiness is more about achieving Joy (sense of purpose). Joy is about being happy in the moment…every moment. Enjoying the journey, and not the destination…that’s happiness. A practice that everyone wants to master…myself included.
Why write about happiness? My journey to happiness + food.
- Happiness – My curiosity about what makes people happy started in college when I first learned about positive psychology (studying the well-being of people). I then (years later) watched a TedTalk with Shawn Achor and since then, I’ve been pretty obsessed with what he’s been doing in his field and his books.
- Nutrition – That was combined with learning more about healing through food. This started when my doctor tried to put me on prescription heart-burn medication 8 years ago and I was so stubborn about not wanting to take them that I researched what I could do to fix this at home without medications. After tweaking my diet, I was able to get off of the prescription pills and have never had to go back. Then a few years later, I was having issues with canker sores and yet again tweaked my diet and it worked. Later I found out that my body has an issue with folate(a B vitamin), my body will only accept raw forms of folate. So after years of not knowing this and feeling crummy, I now have become part of the juicing world! This was a game changer for me. I never ever thought I would say it… but juicing is amazing! Finally, most recently my husband had a slew of blood tests done and found that he has a lower B12 than most people. Enough that it caused alarm at first. For now though it’s just something that we monitor and attempt to correct through food! With the epidemic around, we definitely want to do what we can to have the strongest immune system out there, and if we can do our part at home, then we will.
*I should state that I am not a doctor, psychotherapist or physician in any way shape or form. I became a Happiness Coach, as well as, took many psychology and nutrition college courses, recently acquiring a Certification on Nutrition (it’s COVID, what else was I doing!). My overall goal is to help people on their journey to being happy and then paying it forward to help others to be happy. What a world that would be!
I live in a small town in Northwest Indiana where my husband, Ben and I live on a lake. He is a software developer and I work in analytics, we have a fondness for data, problem solving, and processes.
Like with everyone…COVID-19 has changed our lives, where we both work from home full-time. Like many people, we have had to adjust, find our new normal and adapt to the new world order.
More about me:
- I’m obsessed with all things 80s! Movies, music, clothing…I just can’t get enough! I really am one big goofball.
- Huge Disney fan….Snow White to be specific but also Indiana Jones and Star Wars obsessed. I mentioned I was a geek earlier right? John Williams is the greatest composer to ever live…just going to throw that out there. I also had the opportunity to complete my professional internship at Walt Disney World Resorts on the Marketing Analytics Team. Still one of the best times of my life.
- I love plants and my little robotic R2D2. We have a bunch of potted peppers and herbs on our deck, and also potted lime and clementine trees. These are my babies.
- I love all things carbs, they just don’t love me. Thai food and uh-tacos! I also love a great Caesar salad and my new favorite juice is carrot + apple, yum!!
What should you do now?
- Sign-up to get the latest recipes, along with newsletters filled with detailed information about nutrients, mindfulness, exercise and kindness. You will also get printable freebies to follow along or join in on a challenge. You can do that here.
- Join our community on Facebook at the SPHappiness Reset facebook group to participate in challenges.
- Share a SavorParadise recipe photo on Instagram @savorparadise with #savorparadise or a happiness photo from some of our challenges with #SPhappiness
- Save our recipes on Pinterest!
Thank you from the bottom of my heart for taking the time out of your life to read this. Feel free to contact me to share things about you.