GZ Loves... Ksenia Avdulova & Eric Brief

GZ Loves... Ksenia Avdulova & Eric Brief

We caught up with the founders of Breakfast Criminals and Crystal Criminals, Ksenia Avdulova and Eric Brief, AKA the #couplegoals transforming lives, one morning at a time. Keep reading to learn more about crystal grids, acai bowls and everything in between.

Good Zebra: You started a movement around breakfast. Why is breakfast so important?

Ksenia Avdulova: How you start your day is how you live your life, and those first waking moments determine how the rest of your day goes!

GZ: What's your morning routine?

KA: I’ve been into the miracle morning routine! Mine usually consists of:

10-minutes of meditation

5 minutes of journaling

2 minutes of saying affirmations out loud

3 minutes of reading

5 minutes of visualization

5 minutes of movement (jumping jacks or dancing to my favorite song)

GZ: A tough time helped you develop Breakfast Criminals. How did you turn heartbreak into something so awesome?

KA: I decided to learn self-love, and to do more things that bring me real joy. I shifted my attention from doing what I thought I should be doing to be successful, to doing what excited me. While healing my heartbreak, I deepened my spiritual practice and started reading The Four-Hour Work Week by Tim Ferris. That’s when I decided to produce my first product,The Heart Bowl – and ended up selling 2,000 of them, and creating a whole new product category on the edge of kitchenware and sacred objects. I’m launching the updated heart bowl in 3 colors in May and am very excited to bring the symbol of self-love into the world in three colors - white, green and red!


GZ: What are you most proud of creating?

KA: A community of people who are open and excited about taking their mornings – and life – to the next level. I absolutely love the weekly morning takeovers on @breakfastcriminals stories every Wednesday, and I’m excited to have more and more guest recipes on www.breakfastcriminals.com. It’s becoming a global hub for all things mindful-mornings, and I couldn’t be more grateful for every single person who has ever supported this work!

I’m also incredibly proud of partnering with my boyfriend Eric on @crystalcriminals to lead workshops and bring his healing crystal work to the world. We just led our first workshop at The Class by Taryn Toomey last weekend, and it was a blast!

GZ: You’re the Queen of Acai. What’s the best bowl you’ve ever had?

KA: It’s hard to pick one, I love experimenting with acai bowl recipes! But if I had to pick one, it would be the authentic acai bowl I had in Brazilian jungle with Tambor Acai.


GZ: What’s your favorite way to break a sweat?

KA: Lately, with my new Bellicon rebounder. I’m obsessed! Having one at home added a fun invitation to take movement breaks. Life-changing!

GZ: If you could be anywhere in the world right now, where would you be?

Eric Brief: I would be in Brazil at a crystal mine that just opened up that nobody had any ideas what was about to be discovered.

We'd also be in our future home in nature recharging our connection to earth in an eco-art-home obviously perfectly crystal curated and decorated by us as a team.

GZ: We’re obsessed with #boyfriendsundays. How did you two come up with this concept?

EB: I used to be a raw vegan obsessed with superfoods back in 2009 when NOBODY CARED. Everyone thought I was the craziest person in the world for eating only "raw food." I actually had a blog that around 7-12 people read pretty consistently. I knew in my gut that someday these things would become mainstream, but the time was not right, and it pulled me out of that community, but not out of my passion and love for it.

I actually didn't even know what Ksenia did for a living until our third date. I had already decided I wanted to spend the rest of my life with her. She, on the other hand, had googled me and researched the crap out of me. I viewed the 4 pictures from JSwipe at least twice.

Long story short, after some time together I started realizing that she was working with all these brands that I used for so many years and had read volumes on all of the products etc... and I had always dreamed of being HER in my earlier years. I have always been a chef and a food artist so once I started to understand what an Instagram story was I started making appearances and one day after unsolicitedly reviewing ALL of the products she had she just said we need to get you and your strange behavior on camera. And then the hounds were unleashed.

GZ: What’s your ideal date day/night?

EB: We wake up together and do our morning routines together with morning beverages (functional ghee coffee on most days) and then go to our respective offices to work. Then we meet back up for lunch in the kitchen and share all the amazing things we created so far, and then work some more, and periodically peek into each others’ offices to celebrate more good news and excitement. Then we go to yoga/meditation/sound healing/Whole Foods and we come home and watch a movie eating Nada Moo or Van Leeuwen vegan ice creams with pink salt and cinnamon that I prepare in the ceramic ice cream bowls I made at the pottery studio.

GZ: I’m a crystal noob- how do I get started?

EB: First step is to go to a crystal store or a friends place with crystals to feel around and observe which crystals you gravitate to immediately and want to touch. Start there and realize that you don't need to always "feel it" for it to do its work and be effective. I am not currently present to the fact that I am wearing underwear, but I know it’s doing its job. It’s really that simple. Pick a crystal you are drawn to, close your eyes and breathe, and keep your eyes closed and see what comes up. It’s important that you are paying attention to the physical experience and then bringing more awareness to it once you are tuned into your breath.

Before you even go there, just look at the pretty shiny objects and allow yourself to be in a state of wonder at the fact that they were formed in the womb of the over hundreds of millions of years of unthinkable pressure and heat.

GZ: What’s the best advice you've ever received?

EB: It’s a combo of two pieces of advice I've received from people along my journey. Follow your passion and bliss and then, on the other hand, develop and master a practical skill(s) in the world that can support material life.

KA: Follow your heart relentlessly, no matter what the mind says.

GZ: Our favorite childhood food memory is animal crackers, of course. What is yours?

KA: Rainbow ice cream in Australia where I grew up. Does anyone else remember it?

Inspired by Ksenia and Eric? Us too! Follow @breakfastcriminals & @crystalcriminals (+ @wokeandwired & @ericbrief) for more.

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