About Me    

I’m Effie. People have always asked me if my name was short for something and it is. The full version is, Efstathia- which I like to say that I got it from my grandma because it’s true, I was named after her. Other questions I get are how to pronounce my name and what the meaning behind it is.

You may be thinking why I am bringing this up. So for a minute I’m going to channel the movie, My Big Fat Greek Wedding and give a history lesson on the meaning of my name. So, Efstathia comes from the Greek word ef-stathis and means stable and strong. 

Those living with rheumatoid arthritis know how hard it can be to always be ‘stable and strong.’ While that is the definition of my name, I can’t say that my disease activity has always been stable or that I am strong all the time.

While I do have a strong character, having lived with rheumatoid arthritis for 14 years has definitely made me even stronger. It has also helped me realize my gifts, passions, and purpose in a more profound way. Most of all, it has taught me that keeping calm and to stress less- which can be easier said than done when sick, can help a great deal.

What else? I…

Am born and raised in the Chicagoland area.

Had a pet goldfish that lived for about 16 years.

Have a B.A. in Communications (Journalism, Public Relations and Screenwriting).

Was once formally employed by the Arthritis Foundation Chicago Chapter.

Currently consult and work with, theRAconnection as a blogger and moderator.

Am a Integrative Nutrition Health Coach with the goal of using a holistic approach to help those living with rheumatoid arthritis, juvenile arthritis, chronic illness, disability and joint replacement (s) pre/post-surgery, cope and thrive.

Have worked with several non-profits, organizations and charities as either an ambassador, volunteer, patient advocate, intern or employee, to either share my story in verbal or written form, raise awareness, participate in campaigns and more. Some of these include the; Arthritis Foundation, Suffering the Silence, InvisiYouth, Diversability, Breakthrough Crew, Arthritis National Research Foundation, and The 50 State Network- Creaky Joints.

Enjoy spending time with family and friends, helping people, my faith, meditation, the spiritual side of life, baking, finding and trying out new gluten-free, vegan and vegetarian recipes, reading, writing, walking, swimming, working out, the beach, Pusheen the Cat even though I am a dog person, dancing, music, The Ellen Show, flowers, learning how to garden and more.

To see what I am cooking, baking, blending, juicing and the like, check out the Recipe Corner section of my blog and follow me on social media.