Lonneke Engel BMW I

My story of working for the BMW i3 & i8

One of my first steps into promoting a Greener lifestyle, was to tell my agent IMG I wanted to only work with companies that are trying to do their share to make today's life & energy demand more sustainable. I am not interested in modeling just for money, I only want to try to connect my face and image with a brand that is doing good. When BMW said they were coming out with electrical cars,  the BMW i3 and i8, and needed to make promotional videos, of course I wanted to do this!

BMW going green

BMW, although they always were on the forefront with their cars already, started thinking how they can make their business more sustainable. They believe in hydrogen, and tried to use this technology in a BMW 7, but now it was time to make an all electrical car.

The BMW i3 is made more for everyday city life, while the i8 is a true sports car. Since I have always had a love for design, I get excited when I see totally new concepts like these ones! Although at the time of the shoot I did not see the actual cars, as they were not present, I know I will soon.

Shooting for BMW

I shot the campaign shots in a studio in NYC, and for the video I travelled all the way to Munich. The shoots were really well arranged and I had a lot of fun doing it. It was my first time to Munich also. I did 2 campaign images and 5 shots for the video:

modeling for green and good brands

When I decided for myself I did not want to model anymore for brands that are known to be not so healthy or good (think junk food like cheap chocolate, alcohol or cheap clothing brands that are known to produce their clothing not in a good way) of course this shrunk all the possible collaborations for me and possible ways to make a living. But I was adamant I wanted to only work with companies that were trying to make a difference.

I always loved BMW's and wanted to promote Green initiatives, I wanted to do this campaign! So I asked my agent Peter from IMG models NYC to push for me, and I got the job! As I was very picky the past years with jobs, I was happy I would also make some money doing something good, so I could support myself. I just want to try to make it the right way.

Learning about BMW

At the shoot, I also learned a lot about BMW's new way of thinking. They told me that besides producing the BMW i3 and i8, they were also looking at ways to make all their factories carbon neutral, and they said even small and simple changes that are sometimes overlooked, saved so much energy (and money) that now they claim their factory is indeed the World's most Sustainable factory.

This is the commercial:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yQap4ot5wpI

Love, Lonneke

video & pictures by BMW

First published in 2012, updated in 2019


5 tips for a Green World

Most people want a Green World. But how do we achieve that goal?

I recently came across this quote by Carl Sagan on the Stop Fracking Instagram account that made me stop and think. I searched for more and discovered that this man, who brought the cosmic universe in understandable language to us, gave us inspirational things to think about and maybe even make a change.

A Better World

We all notice something is in need of a thorough inspection and update in our World today. The idea of making money, a career, to have a house (with a mortgage) and a car (with a loan), fame ( & power) and buying, consuming & owning expensive "things" is just not that satisfying for most of us anymore. And we see a LOT of problems unfolding in front of our eyes.

What is going on these days? What are the issues of our generation? Why are people worried and upset?

People see that the energy supplies are drying up and we need a new way of energy. People feel they can't trust anymore what they eat. Our food system is being endangered because some big corporations are trying to change DNA structures of plants (GMO). Nature is being demolished for industries worldwide. There are worries about the Climate Change and if the air you breathe is still good enough and the water you drink from the tap is not contaminated in the future. People worry about possible nuclear bombs and terrorism. Species become extinct, people are being suppressed in countries. (Gay) people are being bullied and attacked. Even pets are legally seen as a material object, a "thing" not a living being and part of your family.

The World sometimes feels like it is messed up

And we all feel this, one way or another. Everyone wants to change something. People want less stress, less responsibilities, more time to spend with loved ones,  more happiness, greener nature, less abuse, less violence, more Peace between people and the Earth. But most people wait until others to take the lead... But why wait? All issues going on in society are influencing us all, if we want it or not. We can sit by and wait and see, or have an active attitude.

Like the quote says:

without clean air and water all our dreams and ideas for the future cannot become reality.

And if we don't speak up what we want ourselves, no one will, and money will continuously rule our World.

But it all feels like too. big. of. an. issue. to. deal. with. and. to. fix.

Where to begin? I hear you asking.

It all starts with our excessive consumption pattern of this moment. That. needs. to change. No way out.

How to start living a better, more sustainable and fulfilling life for a Green World,  without coming across as a drastic activist?

Answer: One step at a time. Here are 5 tips for a Green World Inspiration:

1.  Information is Powerful

Read and learn about things before consuming something or buying something. I read everyday all day and listen to inspirational people, experts in their field, to learn about their findings. And if you made mistakes in the past, and people are continuously pointing out all the things you do or did wrong: focus on what you do right at this moment. People will always try to find something to bring you and your good intentions down. You can start any moment to live a better and a more green life to work together with millions of others to create a Green World! (Good news huh?!) I made mistakes too, and sometimes worked with companies that are not doing so well on the ethical or sustainable level. But the money I made I now put where my mouth is. Know that every day is a new day to change your lifestyle.

2. Each time you buy something, you vote with your purchase

You can either sustain or change a situation using your power of spending. When everyone stops buying products that don't have a good ethical side to it, producers will change to fit the customers needs. It is that easy. So next time you buy something. THINK about what you are buying. And choose good stuff! For instance, if you buy cheap clothing or fast food, you are likely to vote for underpaid unethical (child) labor, depleting nature from essential minerals, contaminating drinking water and bad living conditions for animals as well as voting for a bad health of yourself, to name a few gigantic problems our World faces these days. Cheap means, the money savings have to come somewhere. So you might have a fashionable shirt you wear probably only a few times. And then throw out (creating enormous waste). Or eating a cheap meal.  The impact on yourself and the planet is so devastating you probably would think twice to purchase it if you saw all of these problems that come with that purchase unfold at once in front of your own eyes. The amount of chemicals and genetically manipulated ingredients used in the production of cheap food like products and fashion is alarming. And it is in almost all the stuff you have at home probably, unless you live under a rock. So it affects ALL OF US. Choose wisely for a Green World.

3. Think long-term, not short-term

Some people think about the short-term cost of things, in other words: what does it cost today? While I always think long-term because that is the best for a Green World. If I am healthy and stay healthy for a long time, I need less doctors for disease, less medication, and that way I save a lot of money! I believe that investing in health, by going to doctors to manage my health ,and by buying good products in the beginning will save money in the end compared to people always buying cheap food and cheap products. Cheap food gets you sick, cheap products don't last long, are unethically made, and need to be replaced all the time.  Think about your karma, your conscience.. Can you live with the situation you sustain by buying that product? Your choice if you want to save money now, or your money, your health and your karma in the end. Don't you want the best for your kids? Think about every aspect of their lives. What do you feed them, what do you make them wear, where do you let them play...what quality is the air their young developing lungs breath... each thing, each action is of an incredible importance to the rest of their lives. Be aware, be conscious. Are you protecting their future? Are you fighting for clean soil and organic food, clean air & water? Or do you just sit by and watch the big corporations & government ruining it all just for the Sake of profits? For our children and their future: you can't stay in silence, speak up and demand better & healthier products, protection of people, animals & nature and safety all along. There is enough of everything for everyone and for our future, but we are all using it up now. Pretty selfish don't you think?It is a fact that buying cheap stuff will only give you short-term happiness when purchased. And it might give you a good feeling for a moment: the ones involved in making it are not happy at all. Let's be honest here: a 1 dollar meal or 5 dollar shirt sounds like a bargain, but HOW in the world can that 1 dollar product be made with respecting people, animals & nature? Answer: no way. And the bad ingredients in cheap processed foods can help you get serious diseases like heart disease, diabetes, obesity to name a few. The toxins used in producing cheap fashion can cause lung & skin problems and the amount of waste created this way... forgetaboutit. If you knew that junk food, soda drinks, buying toxic clothing, shoes and other products would be harmful to your health and that of your family in the long run, would you think twice about buying the cheap, unhealthier version?

4. Think quality, not quantity

While a deal of 2 or more for the price of one sounds like a great deal, it usually only comes for products that aren't really healthy or well made, and actually could be harmful to your health. While our society has the idea that "We want MORE" is the way to go, and buying lots and lots of things and owning lots and lots of things are the best for you, I believe in Less is More. Also, knowing where your products come from gives a certain extra value to the purchase, besides knowing you help a local producer and the safety of knowing who made it. That is true quality. I keep downgrading my life daily, so I can enjoy my life more without the continuous bills coming my way and the worries that come with it. So I don't have to work to keep up with the bills, and don't need that much time keeping up, and organizing my belongings. So I have more time to spend with who I love, doing what I love. It's an enlightened feeling if you can say: I don't need all that. Our family doesn't need all that. I am perfectly happy with the stuff I already have

5. Be creative

Companies have tried to make us all look the same: "We give you a lot of the same looking products and you all buy it from us, and you don't know where it is made, from what it is made and who made it". It is the easiest and cheapest for companies to produce this way. And the more you buy, the more money they make, which will only benefit a very small group of people. Also, these clothes have usually a bad carbon footprint (Think made fare away like "Made s in "INSERT SOMEWHERE IN ASIA") and create a terrible amount of waste. Just saying. Back to the "Be creative" part. I hate the idea of wearing an outfit and someone else walks by in the exact same shirt from a chain store. So I try to stay as far away. I absolutely LOVE my vintage shopping, the hunt for that one-of-a-kind piece, and buying from unique designers and local craftsmen. Less carbon footprint: a happier World. Also for furniture the same. Commodity is no fun.  Be original. Exchange products with your friends (and save money too), let people see who you truly are, choose things that are original, that are YOU. And u know what? People will recognize and praise you for your courage and your great eye and originality! Because most don't have that much originality unfortunately, but they will see it when it is in front of their own eyes. Bonus: being original and recycling products like vintage and antique is usually cheaper to purchase, create almost no waste. The clothes actually are recycled in the economy as well so worth more economically per garment (if that makes sense). It takes creativity, and we lost it somehow the past decades when industrialization and mass production came into our lives, but we can get it back!

The World is not lost yet, it can still be a Green World

We have been taught that our voice does not make a difference by the people who run the world in the Old Economy. It is quite the contrary. If you feel like you want to make a change, you can totally do that as every little bit counts.   Because all those little bits together become a big chunk. And people will notice. Companies will notice and will make a chance. Just focus, everyone has their own favorite issue they want to change. And yes, you might experience a bit of a struggle in the beginning, but easy things are no fun. Success is only satisfying when it takes effort to get to that point.

I encourage you to start changing your consuming pattern for the better. "New" isn't always better," cheap" is usually not right. If you only become more conscious about your actions, and the things you buy each day with the hard-earned money you made, we are half way there. Don't believe all advertising, some are misleading. Trust me I know. The way you consume things and leave your footprint on this Earth matters. Every positive little (green) change helps to change this society for the better. And people lead by example.

Open your mind, explore, learn, send out your message and connect with people who believe in a Green World.

And foremost: Put your money where your mouth is if you believe in a Green World. Buy from true organic & green companies, local farmers & craftsmen and buy GMO free produce.

The World is not lost yet. There are a lot of people still focusing on the money aspect of things (so last Century) But even the most corrupt and money loving people and corporations have a heart... somewhere. They just lost the right path a few decades ago, and can't seem to find it anymore. They only go for the short term profit; they lost the touch with the people who work for them, the animals and products they work with and the environment they work in. But with our efforts and little changes to a greener life we will push them to find the right path again!

Together we stand, all that is important is us, our children and our future.

Love, Lonneke

Founder Organice Your Life®

Carl Sagan quote 2


Maruja & Lonneke

How to deal with stress and anxiety

Everyone deals with stress and anxiety at one point in their life. And every person gets overwhelmed for different reasons. That's why I decided to have a live chat with my best friend of 25 years Maruja Retana to talk about it!

Maruja Retana

Maruja (Maru) helps singers & songwriters achieve peak performance, also known as ‘the flow’. After obtaining her Master’s Degree in Cognitive Psychology, Maruja started working as a psychologist in the Netherlands. In her role as facilitator - helping other people define and reach their goals & dreams - she realised that she herself wasn’t living her most fulfilled life. She quit her job, and decided to go straight for the thing she wanted most: music. She signed with Sony/ATV in 2011 as a singer/songwriter; worked with several top producers, artists and songwriters; released songs that appeared in the charts, on the radio and music festivals; and performed all over the world. Having achieved her childhood dreams, Maruja felt inspired to help other singers navigate the challenging music industry. She founded the Vocal Psychology program - a combination of voice coaching, performance coaching, and mindset coaching - and has successfully coached hundreds of singers (beginners and professionals) for the last 10+ years.

MORE ON MARUJA: Her music video for Right Through Me hit 1 million views!

Lonneke, Maruja & Joey brainstorming
Lonneke, Maruja & Joey brainstorming

How do you deal with stress?

The recent Lockdown due to the Coronavirus gave some people a great sense of peace as they finally had time to spend at home with family and sleep a few more hours a day, but many people were suffering from depression, sadness and anxiety because of the unknown. We cover everything and even go ahead and did a breathing exercise! Watch it below:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ax2ECdsHnOM&feature=youtu.be

 

Panic attack

A little secret: Just before the filming of this video I had a minor panic attack. Felt dizzy etc. So it is true that everyone has some kind of anxiety at some point! Maruja talked me through it, and once we started filming, I started relaxing and enjoying the video.

What can you do to deal with stress and anxiety

One thing I learned from my conversation with Maruja: Address your stress and anxiety, and become friends with it. You have stress and anxiety for a reason, for instance to stay awake and perform well right after. So if you can use it to your advantage, you can become stronger and better.

Youtube

I hope you subscribe to my Youtube channel if you like this video and want more. I have fun doing them and hope you enjoy them too!

Love, Lonneke


Detox your information overload

Thanks to technology, our lives have become so much easier and better organized. We can search for and find anything we want, whenever we want, on the Internet. We read and learn about everything and anything. Now there are even apps for everything you can imagine. We order fashion, food and gifts online, we read the news, we watch videos. It is pretty great!

Social Media and information overload

Some of us interact with people even more on social media than in real life. But maybe all that technology and information comes at a cost. Many of us are suffering more and more from a so-called “information overload". How can we filter what we need to know without getting obsessed? How can we detox our lives from the ever-increasing amount of apps, websites and information that is thrown at us each day? And how can we keep focusing on things that matter in our own lives and live in the moment without losing sight of what’s going on around us? How can we find balance?

When I realized I had a problem

I once received an email from YouBeauty stating:“Distressing world news can make you feel worse about your personal life.”Yes, it’s true for me as well! When I read too much of the bad things that are going on in the World, I can feel pretty down because I feel the need to help everyone, fix the situation myself, and use my voice to let everyone know what is going on. I especially feel I need to inform the clueless people who have no idea what is going on because I think that they are not aware, and maybe even ignorant.

Protecting myself from an information overload

But maybe some of those people are not ignorant; maybe they are just better at filtering all the news and information. Maybe they are better at shielding themselves from bad news and too much information, and choose only to work with what they find the most important, and in the meantime live their lives the best way they possibly can. I used to check my Twitter, Facebook and Instagram multiple times a day, like every hour or more. I would send out messages to the World so much, and be interactive with others, that it swallowed up a large part of my day. I felt it was my duty to use my voice to inform people about global disasters, about why it is important to eat organic food and not GMO foods, why fracking is a no-go and why you need to adopt a pet instead of buying one at the pet store. I was doing so much at once, and I was not focusing at all.

The strange thing is that in the end it seems I did not make much of difference. It just took up a lot of time, and after every day, my head was spinning. I only realized how much time I spent on social media when I accidentally left my phone at home. I also realized most of what I was doing in my day on social media, even though it came from a good heart, wasn’t making me feel that great emotionally. It actually made me sad. I asked myself: Does it make me any happier seeing people “like” my picture or my story? Do I really make a difference this way right now? Do I really need to read all news? Do I really need to share all that makes me sad? The answer: not really. Also, when I noticed that every picture people took of me captured me typing away on my phone, I realized it was too much. I became a bit of an addict and I need to change that so I can live more in the moment, be consciously hanging out with the people I am with at dinners, and only take in the information I need so it does not drive me crazy.

Courtesy of Lonneke EngelNow I spend more time away from my phone, and doing fun things like walking my dog!

What did I do to change my addiction to information

  1.  First of all, I don’t sit on my phone or computer too late at night anymore. When you work on your computer or phone, or watch TV just before going to bed, it can disrupt the making of melatonin (sleep hormone), and it can make it difficult to sleep or have a good night of sleep at all. Sleep is so important for a healthy body and mind. Also, your head might still be working hard to process all that information you read, and you might still be thinking about it at night. It is good to do some meditation, or cuddling with your partner or pets just before you go to sleep, to have a better night’s rest.
  2. Check your phone at set times and only a few times a day. I do that when I am behind my computer working, for instance. I checked news and social media every hour before; now I check only one or two times a day. And not when I am in the company of people. People don’t like that because you are just not really present in the moment—your attention is somewhere else.
  3. Have a goal when you go online, and only visit websites, apps and social media with that goal in mind. Don’t just go surfing because before you know it, you are online for hours... information overload! And if you are shopping online, know what you are looking for, because you can get distracted easily and end up with three new dresses and a new handbag.
  4. Set a time limit if you want to just roam the Internet or social media, because it’s so easy to lose track of time.
  5. Leave your phone in your bag or even at home when going out to meet friends or spend time with your loved ones. When I don’t have it with me, I don’t feel the urge to check it every five minutes. Or turn all notification signals off if you want your phone with you for safety reasons.
  6. I deleted the social media apps on my phone. Not only does that save storage space, but you can’t log in easily and you are not reminded every time you get a “like,” tweet or message. It takes your attention away from your phone and social media.
  7. What also makes me feel more productive is to make a to-do list every day and just go at it point by point. With a to-do list, my work behind the computer became increasingly more productive. I was not surfing away on the Internet and wasting time and reading too many unnecessary articles.

I need to focus on my life, and I’m working on it! I need to live a life that I am proud of by focusing on things I find important, like only buying products from people and places that are either fair trade, organic or locally sourced. I also try to focus on doing something fun each day—cooking good food and spending time doing things I love with the people I love (and for which I did not have time before). Without my technology distractions, I get more out of my day and am much happier.The fact is, we can’t change the World all by ourselves, but we can change our own lives and hopefully inspire others with that. We need to use the information and technology at our disposal to our advantage, but without letting it take over our lives.

We must LIVE IN THE MOMENT, as once it has passed, that time will not return.

Love,Lonneke

Copyright text Lonneke Engel. First published on Youbeauty in 2013


Energy Healing with Carolina Fontaneti

Recently, I did a live stream with Brazilian top model Carolina Fontaneti about "energy healing".  It became a lovely chat about life, work, Coronavirus and the energy around us that can help us heal ourselves.

Carolina Fontaneti

Carolina and I know each other for years already as we did a photoshoot together many years ago in Milan, Italy for the fashion brand "Fay". We were represented by the same agency, and we became friends after that shoot.

Lonneke for Fay, with top model & OYL contributor Carolina Fontaneti, booked by IMG Milan

Organice Your Life

Carolina also became interested in organic food, and we cooked many times together. We had many different brainstorm sessions in my loft, and wonderful conversations over dinner or brunch over the years.  Carolina became an author for OrganiceYourLife.com and started contributing many amazing articles about her work, good food, and spirituality.

Cat's Healing

Over the years I saw Carolina become a strong woman finding her voice, and she became more and more interested in spiritual practices like meditation and healing gems. She started making her own jewelry with amber from Lithuania, a natural product that has been around for many thousands (even millions) of years! Many ancient stories say that amber has healing properties. I bought a necklace from her and wear it frequently. You can find her Cat's Jewelry online!

READ MORE: Cat's Healing Jewelry by Carolina Fontaneti

Energy healing

Now it is time to chat about self healing, energy healing and healing jewelry. Thanks to your questions it became a nice chat live all the way from Brazil and the USA!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xMhWqiaWRXQ

WATCH MORE: How to Deal with Stress & Anxiety with Maruja Retana & Lonneke Engel

Love, Lonneke


5 reasons to adopt a shelter dog

Many people want to have a dog in their lives. I understand, because they are the most amazing animals, full of love, and they love to be by your side! Many people are swayed by cute puppies, and don't really understand the reality of having a puppy in their home. That's why I am sharing with you my 5 reasons to adopt a shelter dog, and why I prefer a shelter dog over a puppy at a pet shop or breeder.

1. When you buy a puppy, one shelter dog dies

It sounds harsh, but that is the reality. The most amazing dogs are killed or left behind in cold shelters because people don't choose them but instead buy puppies from breeders, or even worse, from people who just want to make money and import the dogs from far away not caring about the health and wellbeing of the mother and puppies. If you buy a puppy (because he or she is "sooo cute"!) you are contributing to the problem and you keep unhealthy practices going. Dogs are being killed everywhere - even in my hometown of NYC - EVERY DAY. I believe that if breeders truly love their breed, they would rescue dogs of their breed, and re-home them (for a fee) until all of the dogs of their breed are out of the shelter, before they breed even more puppies that will add to the problem. 

2. You know exactly what you get when you adopt a shelter dog

A dog in a shelter shows you exactly who he or she is. You can meet them more than once, walk them, play with them to see if your characters match. The character of an older shelter dog has set, and he or she has been assessed by the shelter staff. Even though dogs until very old age can learn new tricks and rules, it is nice to know what your dog prefers or not. When you adopt a shelter dog, you know if the dog is a barker, will chew on your stuff, can be home alone, likes to run or has medical issues. A lot of inbred puppies these days are born with incredible complex medical issues, which most of them don't show up in the first year of the puppy. It's something many people forget. (If you can insure your dog for health costs, that is a good option) When you adopt from a shelter, you know if the dog is housebroken or not. (most of them are in fact!) All these things give you so much more information on how your life is going to be with your dog, than when you buy a puppy whose character and behavior is still a total mystery. It could go well (which all new puppy owners hope for, but is only possible with lots of correct and daily training) or totally wrong giving you a hard time and maybe even forcing you to re-home your dog, which will give you and your dog much heartbreak. It would also result in more dumped dogs in the shelters because they end up not matching the envisioned lifestyle of the owner. Be smart: Adopt a dog that matches your life! 

3. A shelter dog is less expensive to purchase than a purebred puppy

Adopting a shelter dog is very cheap! While a puppy with a breeder will set you back anywhere between 500 and 10.000 dollars, a rescued dog will only cost you between 100 and 500 dollars (senior dogs are much cheaper, and sometimes even for free). You also know if the dog has expensive medical issues, or has had a fairly good life so far and not too expensive in upkeep. For your financial situation is good to know what you are getting yourself into!

4. A rescued shelter dog is so thankful

A shelter dog has been through a rough time, and feel so happy to be with you in a safe home! They show you their thankfulness in almost human like affection. And a rescued shelter dog is just as cute as a puppy... maybe even cuter! No wonder the hashtag #rescuedogsrock and #shelterdogsarethebest are my favorite tags!

5. You become a shelter dog rescue hero 

When you do the right thing for yourself, for your community, and especially for the shleter dog, the feeling you get from that, is much more rewarding than that cute puppy. Everybody can buy a puppy, but not everyone can rescue a dog. It's a much more special achievement.This of course counts for adopting any animal: Cats, rabbits, horses you name it! And when your rescue a shelter dog we will salute you!

So rescue your four-legged friend from a shelter near you. And if you don't want to make a longterm commitment or want to have a trial period, you can always become a Foster Parent. Fostering saves many dogs' lives.

We loved our shelter senior dog Vito so much, he was the best. He passed away after a short illness because of cancer, 3 years after we adopted him as a senior dog from a shelter. Those were the best 3 years! We saved him, but he definitely saved us too. That's what shelter dogs do, they have a certain magic to them. Our current dog Bane was also a shelter dog from Animal Haven in NYC.. he chose us! and he has been with us for more than 3 years already. We feel blessed that we could do something so easy, with such a big impact

 

 


Lonneke wearing Minitials

YouBeauty's Green Lifestyle Columnist

A nice little memory I want to share with you: Once upon a time I was green lifestyle columnist of the website YouBeauty by Dr. Oz & Dr. Roizen!  I really loved being part of such a powerful team. I met the people behind the website a few times in NYC, and I thought it was very inspiring to be involved.

YouBeauty Articles

Below are a few of my articles that I submitted to them.The website has changed, and many of my articles have a changed look, but you can still read them, and over all of those years, my message has stayed the same. Enjoy!

You Beauty old logo

The old logo of YouBeauty when I actively submitted articles

and then it became this logo
the latest logo

 

Lonneke for Youbeauty

My articles for Youbeauty:

On avoiding stress in your body & mind: When your Body says 'NO': avoiding a Burnout"

On simple rules to eat a healthy diet: What should I eat?

On how to Organice Your Home: Clean up your life.

4 tricks for a Summer body: 5 simple tricks for looking great!

How to stay beautiful during stressful times

A peek into my life: introducing Organice Your Life to readers of Youbeauty.

Tips to: stick to your New Years Resolutions.

Motivation to start living your life the way you want to: Who says you can't follow your dreams?

Organice Your Relationships: Invest in your relationships

Introduction to myself: Lonneke Engel

 

Love, Lonneke

First published in 2013, update in 2020

 


Organize your shoe closet

Shoes. Shoes Shoes. I have too many of them!

I LOVE SHOES. Just like most girls in the world. The problem is: I used to never get rid of a pair. So my collection was getting to an Imelda Marcos’ size until I really downsized. (Imelda , First lady of Philippines from 1956 on for twenty years, was known for her huge collection of about 2500 pairs. But also for her lavish lifestyle which she paid for reportedly with public funds. That’s bad, but us girls, we work hard for our shoes!) Now I have a few pairs I am going to sell.

Seven tips to organize your shoe closet

  • Really, the shoes you haven't worn the past 5 years, have to go. Unless they have some emotional value to you. Then they go to your box with memorabilia, and are put away.
  • Shoe boxes are genius. You can put them on top of each other ( have u tried that with shoes themselves? Quite hard!) And the shoes are protected.
  • If you use shoe boxes, you can write down on the box, what shoes are in there. For example: “ Black Christian Louboutin platform High Heels” or “ Favorite Zara golden sandals”
  • You can even put a picture of the shoes on the outside. So you don’t have to open the shoe box.
  • Put shoes with the same use/ color together: High heels with High Heels, sneakers with sneakers, running shoes with running shoes.
  • Another suggestion: Write down exactly how much you wear a pair of shoes, That clears up whether the shoes are a hit or miss. If you were expensive shoes every day, they have been a great buy. If you never wear them, it was a bad decision.
  • Best of all is a closet specially made for shoes, just like mine!

If you want to get rid of a pair of shoes, sell them to a vintage store close to you, like Beacon's Closet in New York City, or bring them to one of the collection points for clothing collection. Selling shoes can be done online on websites like Ebay, The Real Real, Poshmark, or an app like Letgo.

And last tip: First check your closet before you go shopping, you might find something you did not know you had!

Love, Lonneke


roasted figs with goat cheese & honey

roasted figs snack

I love figs very much! Besides that they are tasty, they are also very good to help with digestion (dried or fresh) as they are a good source of fiber and full of vitamins and minerals & anti-oxidants.

Read more about figs HERE.

figs
figs
sliced figs
sliced figs
figs with crumbled goat cheese and honey
figs with crumbled goat cheese and honey
roasted figs snack
simple roasted figs with a sweet taste

Author:
Recipe type: snack
Serves: 1

Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 

Ingredients
  • small fresh figs, (4 per person) washed
  • 1 tbsp local honey
  • organic goat cheese, crumbled.

Instructions
  1. Slice the figs in half
  2. Put on plate that can go into the stove
  3. Sprinkle the crumbled goat cheese over the figs
  4. Pour the tablespoon of honey over all the figs
  5. Put in stove and roast until goat cheese turns brown and figs become soft.
  6. Serve warm.

roasted figs with goat cheese & honey
roasted figs with goat cheese & honey

This recipe was first published in 2012, updated in 2020


How to make organic coffee at home

It is hard to not like coffee! And while you can get really nice (and expensive) coffee to go in fancy coffeeshops, nothing beats a delicious cup of organic coffee at home.

How we make my favorite cup of coffee

This Organice Your Life clip shows you how we make the best organic coffee at home in New York City! This time it was a Latte macchiato, made with my favorite organic coffee by Antica Tostatura Triestina, an Italian coffee company of my friend Alessandro Hausbrandt. Antica has many kinds and flavors of coffee. My husband likes the regular beans, and I like the decaf beans.

READ MORE: Antica Tostatura Triestina

Organic coffee

Why we prefer organic coffee? Because this way the beans are produced and grown without harmful chemicals and pesticides. Also, especially for decaf coffee it is important to know how the caffeine is extracted from the beans, as many companies do it with lots of bad chemicals.

Homemade coffee

For your homemade coffee, all you need next to the delicious organic ground coffee is a little stovetop espresso maker, a milk frother and organic (vegan) milk. if you have whole beans you also need a grinder.

Just an FYI when you watch the clip: the milk that gets frothed is heated in a skillet until warm.

Enjoy!

Love, Lonneke

Antica Tostatura Triestina coffee

Att cafe organic

 

 


5 tips to Consume Less & Live More

When you look around, you probably see ads everywhere. Whether on the street, or on your computer, TV and phone, you are constantly triggered to look at advertising that wants to push you to buy this and that product. For instance, makeup. The time when all you needed was a simple black mascara and some lip gloss is over according to a lot of makeup brands. They now have eyebrow gel, shine for your eyes, cheek blush, lip liner and more and more. This is in every color, and of course you should really get each one of them. If you have enough money, you can buy it all. But most of us are living on a budget, and buying everything is simply not an option. So how to decide what you really need, and only buy what you need, in a way so you don’t miss a thing, always look great, have no worries, and are definitely not in debt?

quote by Organice Your Life Consume Less Live MoreA simple formula for a great life: Consume Less - Live More

“Consume Less, Live More” is the quote I live by and share with people. We consume too much in our society, and most of it is not essential for survival in life. Let me explain what I mean. Shopping can take over your life. There are even people with shopping addictions, which is not so weird if you think of the constant soliciting from companies. With all these commercials saying you can’t live without their product, and people telling you to do more, more, more, it is sometimes hard to distinguish what you really need, and what you really want. Let’s figure out how to deal with it—it is really a psychological thing. So you can easily change your life by changing your mindset. Here are my five thoughts on this:

1. You don’t need all that

First of all, know that you don’t need much to live. Most of your purchases and daily actions are about wanting more. What you really need each day is good health, water to drink, food to eat and a place to sleep at night. In essence, you don’t need much more. That cute dress you saw on sale is not really a basic necessity, even though you feel like it is at the moment of purchase. That big apartment you want to buy, even your big career. You don’t really need it. You want it. So what is an easy way to financial freedom? Not wanting to have it all, because wanting things comes with a price, whether via a purchase, loan or debt. Or it comes with a physical and/or mental price. Is it worth it?

2. Know your financial situation

You can’t go shopping and plan purchases if you don’t take a long, hard, honest look at your bank account. And this means taking all your debt into consideration. And no, credit card maximum limits are not part of your budget. Even though it feels like free money, in the end you are paying for it, and mostly with interest added onto it. Only buy things you can pay for right away, or absolutely need to live. Even if it looks like a great deal, and you can pay in terms, in the end you have paid much more than if you had bought it right away for the full price. There will always be that next sale, and that great outfit, or other amazing product for you to buy. You are not missing out on anything if you can’t buy it right now. It actually can give you a goal to save money for something that you really want. And in the meantime while saving you can rethink if you really need it. And maybe you don’t want to have it all anymore once you can actually pay it. That’s why I love something I call “pre-shopping.” I go shopping one day and look at everything. Then I go to sleep at night and think it over. The next day I go back to the things I couldn’t stop thinking about and buy them. This way I rarely have to return something. And it protects me from buying things I don’t need.

3. Break the curse of owning stuff which can enslave you

Owning too many things can also make you a slave to your stuff, because all the things you own need time to upkeep. The bigger your apartment is, the more there is to clean. It is also likely more expensive to live in each month. And if you have too much stuff, you need to probably rent storage space. Besides that, if you own expensive things, you worry that they might get damaged, or that you will lose them, or that someone steals them. And insuring things costs a lot of money. So owning something costs money just owning it. Also, think about how much time it costs you every week or so to clean out your closet. If you have less stuff in it, you save a lot of time.

4. Minimize shopping as it can be an addiction

Shopping gives you a rush each time you go. It is the same feeling of when you fall in love, or meet your celebrity crush. Your heart beats faster. But this feeling can also come to you in other situations that cost less money. Helping out at a shelter, for instance. Donating unwanted clothes to someone who really loves or needs them also gives you a feeling of happiness. If you find other ways to get that same happy feeling, ones that are free, it will help you realize you don’t need to go shopping at all. And I am sure most girls can go shopping in their own closet and they will find a few items they’ve never worn. You can wear them or resell them so you have money to buy other things! And if you really want to go shopping, make sure you buy goods of the best quality that’ll last a lifetime and are always in fashion. They will usually be a bit more expensive, but will save you money in the long run, and they will always look great. Consume less but buy more quality. Also, make it a challenge to find recycled objects. Like vintage fashion, or go to a thrift shop to find a gem for not much money. It is very hip right now to go thrift shopping and vintage hunting. You will find amazing items that you can’t believe you can buy for prices as low as 99 cents. Even Macklemore loves it. (p.s. one of my favorite happy songs!)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QK8mJJJvaes

5. Realize that Society makes you want more, more, more!

We are taught that the bigger job, car, home, and more expensive clothes and handbags you have, the better your life is. The governments and banks around the world have made it very easy to borrow money and get major loans. Student loan, home loan, car loan, all made possible for you to get even more. Even if you can’t really pay for it. But do you really in essence want all that, considering the risks and responsibility to pay it back that it comes with? Do you really need that bigger car, or that amazing handbag, only to show off to the neighbor or your friends? What are your real dreams and goals in life, where is your heart, really? Funny thing is that for a lot of people what they want most in life are priceless things, like being healthy, having a lot of free time, being with the ones they love, and doing something that they are passionate about. Being worry-free and debt-free. But you can’t have any of that if you constantly buy things you don’t need. To me it comes across as a bit weird. Why do people work so hard then, and not see their family much, and not have much free time to do things they like to do? Just because they want that career and to make that much money? Because that’s what people do, and what other people expect them to do. Because the bigger career and success in life, the more money people seem to make, and that is considered better. Money that they need to pay the bills of the things they buy when they make more money, but which they wouldn’t buy if they made less money. It is a vicious cycle.If you realize you need less and have enough already, you are more likely to be happy with what you have right now. You probably have more time for yourself than you realize. And you are more likely to live in the moment and enjoy it fully, and do things in your daily routine that are more emotionally fulfilling. Needing and wanting less gives you less debt and fewer worries. So if you can make your mind realize that you don’t need all that, you can save yourself a lot of stress, time and money!

Love, Lonneke

The article is protected by copyright by Lonneke Engel and was first published on Youbeauty,  the website of dr. Oz and Dr. Roizen:

YOUBEAUTY - LONNEKE ENGEL - A SIMPLE FORMULA FOR A GREAT LIFE: CONSUME LESS- LIVE MORE

 

 

Consume less live more


In My Memory: My family Home

 Bringing you a personal story this time, I want to take you through some fond moments I have in my memory.

2020 is the year in which many of my multi-year 'projects' come to a close. Some of them are happy projects, some are harder ones . One of these projects was to say goodbye to my family home, the place I hold dear and where I have made so many lovely memories.

Modeling career

In 1998 I was 17 years old and my family and I had lived for years in an urban neighborhood close to my elementary school. Since a few years I had started modeling and my career took off. At my young age, I had become the breadwinner of the household. My father became my manager and started to travel with me. Modeling went so well that we could look for a farm house so my dream of having our horses stabled at home could become a reality. On the front page of the local real estate paper my sister saw a picture of a cute white farmhouse in a little village I had never heard of before: 'Soerendonk'. We went there for a showing, and on the spot we all decided to buy this farmhouse with the money I had earned from my contracts with Guess, Covergirl and Ralph Lauren. The little village of Soerendonk became our new home.

Over the years I did a few photoshoots there, like this one for Dutch Marie Claire by Roger Neve, and once Reinout Oerlemans visited me for his TV show Heart Break Hotel. The pictures you see in this article are from the shoot with Roger.

 

in front of our house on the street overlooking the meadows. With our neighbor's baby piglet

My horses at home

Eventually our horses Key West and  my sister's pony Jitmar moved in the little stables in the back. We had chicken, an aggressive rooster who would literally pick on me once a while, and we even had 2 goats. My father built in a swimming pool, and added a little wooden house and a blue worker's shack on our land ( I don't know why, because we really did not need more space). And we had an apple orchard. We had some other ponies live there as well over the years. We leased land next door to make a dressage ring and have a few acres of meadow for the horses. I had a bedroom to the front of the house next to the street. Every day our cats - which we adopted from a local farmer - would climb onto the roof and even get into my bedroom and sleep with me on the bed. When we would arrive home from grocery shopping, it was such a cute sight all those cats on the roof welcoming us home. And when I would call "poes poes poes!" They would run towards me from all over the place, hoping it was time for dinner. At night all cats, chicken and horses would all go to the barn to sleep and I would tell them good night each day.

 

on the land we leased from our neighbor. You can see the dressage ring in the back.

 

Every early morning the Sun would shine into my bedroom, and the farmers would wake me up by driving their tractors so close to my bedroom. I would open a side window and check on the horses, they would whinny and I would go open their stable doors, and give them their breakfast. Afterwards I would have breakfast, bring the horses to the field, clean the stables, do homework and in afternoon ride my horse Key West either in the dressage ring or outdoors in the nearby forest or through the village. This daily rhythm made me perfectly content and happy. And many days I would take my horse Key West, walk him onto our trailer by myself, and the 2 of us would go to a dressage lesson or local competition.

Our house looked out onto a meadow of our neighbors, and the house therefore truly had the most beautiful Sunset every day. To me this place was Heaven on Earth. Whenever I traveled far away, it was always nice to come back home.

 

In the living room of our home in Soerendonk

 

In the hallway to the front door in our home.

 

In the hammock in our garden, and in the blue worker's shack on our property.

Good memories

So many specific memories I have from this place. I remember especially the 3 boys living next door peeking over the fence when we moved in. They turned out to be always friendly and helpful, especially when there was danger they would help out or check on our house. Like that one time my horses Key West and Jitmar escaped and ran through the village towards the highway. My neighbors jumped in a car and chased after them with me, catching them just in time. The Weekend after I won 1st price at a dressage competition. My dressage teacher joked that "I should let them escape more often". (No thank you!) That's what is so nice about living in a small community: everybody helps each other. So this city girl became part of the local activities, joined the carnaval club "De Herrieschoppers" and really morphed into the country girl lifestyle. I made friends, many of which I am still in contact with to this day.

My sister's pony Jitmar  (RIP) and I for dutch Marie Claire by Roger Neve in the apple orchard at home.

 

Looking happy up to my father on the balcony after Key West (RIP) and I won a competition. in background you see our chicken run.

Losing it all

My dad and I during a job for Covergirl in NYC in the 90s.

 

Many years I lived there with no worries, until 2001 came along. Not only did we lose the famous Twin Towers on 9/11, I also lost my father Rob on 10/18 after 6 months of battling cancer. His last days he truly enjoyed the Sunset every night from the living room. After he passed away, my life changed, for the worse. I can tell you so much about it, but in short I was forced to say goodbye to that lovely life I had right there, lost everything in my life except my horse Key West. I took him with me to another stable. We had to move on, and I moved to NYC, away from it all.

 

With our dog Winka (RIP) and our dog Kenya (RIP) in our garden in Soerendonk.

I want to honor the lovely animals I have spent time with there, including our dogs Kenya & Winka, cats Alaïa, Dani, Moya, Baer, Sushi, Pepsi, Eddy & Henkie, My horse Key West, my sister's pony Jitmar, our fearless rooster and chicken, goats and more animals who lived there at one moment in time, some of who I wasn't able to say goodbye to, for one reason or another.

My horse Key West died suddenly in 2016 at the age of 24. I was devastated as I loved him so much, he was with me 18 years of my life. I felt he was the last link I had to my dad and previous life.

They will all be in my heart forever.

Live consciously

In the end, the message I want to share with you is that you really need to live in the moment and consciously enjoy the good times, because you never know when it might end. It may end when you least expect it. Enjoy it while you can! I did not think it would be over so fast for me. Memories are all that you take with you in the afterlife. Make sure you make some good ones that you can cherish forever.

READ MORE: The art of letting go

This month, it was an end of an era, finally I can close a chapter. My family house has been sold to another family, and I hope the new owners will make beautiful memories there. This property in Soerendonk has given me much happiness in the years I lived there when my father Rob was still alive. Unfortunately I don't have that many private pictures of this time, my father, my animals, but these pictures by Roger Neve as well as the memories no one can take from me. They are always in my heart.

I have made it my mission in life to make more of these wonderful memories, but now with my husband Dirk and my dog Bane.

Don't cry because it is over, smile because it happened - dr. Seuss

In My Memory by Tiesto

Lastly, I want to share this music with you called "In my memory" by Tiësto released in the year 2001, the year my father passed. Not only because of that fact, and that I talk about something that is in my memory, but also because after my father had passed I became friends with (the team behind) Tiësto and even appeared in his video for Love Comes Again. This music helped me through a tough time in my life. It is still one of my favorite pieces of music.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9KqGmwi_Z5w

Love, Lonneke

pictures by Roger Neve for Marie Claire, and Rob Engel.

also Thanks to Sanja and her wonderful website dedicated to my modeling work where I found these pictures. You can find more pictures of this photoshoot and other work here.