One of the reasons I moved to the DC area from Michigan was because there is so much to do. Now that I am an adult with a fair number of health issues and a mom with two curious kids, I both delight in and dread all the choices. On any given day, there are so many great things to do, see, learn, and explore!

This coming weekend, nearby Baltimore is playing host to an interesting alternative health and nutrition conference called The Fourfold Path to Healing, based on the book by the same name from authors Thomas Cowan, MD, Spatial Dynamics ® founder Jaimen McMillan, and Weston A. Price Foundation president Sally Fallon Morell. The four elements of this approach to health are nutrition, therapeutics, movement and meditation.

For chef and mom Monica Corrado, this approach to health was groundbreaking when the book came out in 2004, and it remains groundbreaking. In contrast to the mainstream medical model of the body being just a physical body, this approach looks at the entire being as multidimensional. Looking at the body through a complex lens rather than as just a body with separate symptoms, Corrado says, is “fundamental to real healing.”

Last year, Corrado taught healthy cooking classes at Takoma Park Middle School with Pizzeria Paradiso’s Ruth Gresser as part of the Chefs Move to Schools initiative. They taught students how to make lacto-fermented ketchup and how to soak oatmeal for optimal digestability. The chefs also showed students last year how to make pizzas from scratch at Barcrof Elementary’s Farm to

Chef Monica Corrado (in white coat) joins chef Ruth Gresser and chef Carla Hall (of Top Chef fame) at a local elementary school's farm-to-table week

Table week in Arlington. For several years, Corrado taught classes on traditional cooking and nourishing healthy children around the DC area. Since moving to Colorado this past fall, Corrado has penned her first book, and she also organized the food at the Weston A. Price Foundation Wise Traditions conference, which also addressed nutrition and holistic health along with with sustainable farming. At the Fourfold Path conference, Monica will spend Friday teaching how participants to make nutrient-dense stock and liver pate.

Having taken a lot of Monica’s classes (and helped her edit her traditional cooking techniques book – full disclosure!), I am no stranger to the nutrition portion of the conference. I’m working hard to heal my gut after three decades of undiagnosed celiac disease and related digestive, skin, and thyroid disorders. What I would love is to integrate more movement into my life. Since battling infertility in 2003 through having my second child in 2010, I’ve learned a lot about what challenges and soothes my body. Movement is something that can have a great impact but is hard to make a priority when there is so much else going on and my diet requires so much time in the kitchen.

This morning, I woke early and hoped to get in some yoga while the water for the soaked oatmeal heated up and before I got my veggies ready for my green juice and broth. But the baby (okay, she’s  toddler) started screaming about 3 minutes after I got out of bed. Instantly I tensed up and rolled up my mat in a huff so that I could get her before my husband and son had their sleep ruined. She then rode on my back while I prepped for the day until the food was ready and she was grabbing for it. And now that she’s with a babysitter, I sit typing instead of moving!

So, to get myself motivated, I hope to get up to Baltimore this weekend! The challenge is how to work the day Saturday so that she and her older brother get their needs met while I get in some conference. Sad to miss out on an opportunity to take advantage of all the great things this area has to offer, I’m trying to figure out my husband can get the kids to the aquarium and something else fun in Baltimore. He’d probably rather stay home with them and watch sports. If he does, maybe he can at least break out that YogaKids DVD I’ve been saving for a rainy day.

When she’s not carrying her daughter or doing the rare sun salutation, Jessica Claire Haney blogs at Crunchy-Chewy Mama, writes for her Washington Times Communities column, “Ingredients for Healthy Living,” and for All Things Mothering.