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No Guilt

I know many of you feel guilty indulging in the yummy foods and goodies that are all around us during the holidays. I’m sure like me this morning, you awoke feeling not your best. Perhaps feeling sluggish this morning. Tired from the celebrations, tired because of the not-so-healthy foods consumed, and a bit mentally exhausted too.

I am here to tell you, there’s no guilt needed. You enjoyed your day and today is a new day to start fresh.

To make sure you’re starting your morning off healthy, make up a hot smoothie. I made a hot orange, ginger, carrot smoothie from http://kitchensanctuary.com/2014/10/orange-carrot-and-ginger-hot-smoothie-week-4-of-my-hot-smoothie-saturday-series-for-october/

Like many of you, I am tired and did not create my own recipe this morning. I chose this one with oranges for two reasons. One is that while visiting my grandfather and parents in Louisiana last week, I was given a huge bag of fresh oranges, satsumas, and grapefruits. These all came from my grandfather’s back yard. They weren’t the prettiest, but they are home-grown and pesticide free! The satsuma oranges are so sweet, juicy and brightly colored! I wanted to incorporate these delicious, fresh fruits into my morning.

The second reason I chose this recipe was that it is loaded with vitamin C from the oranges and lemon. The ginger in it helps with so many things, but the gingerol that is present in fresh ginger, can help with lowering the risks of infection and we all know at this time of year, ourselves and our children tend to get sick. The carrot is full of healthy nutrients as well. Honey is great, especially if you choose local honey as it may help with seasonal allergies. Also, the hot water and lemon combination is so good for your body! It helps balance your body’s pH, flushes out your liver(hello holiday cocktails!), and stimulates your gastrointestinal tract. As you can see, this is a powerful combination of nutrient-rich foods, a great way to start your morning, every morning, but especially after indulging during a holiday.

So, enjoy your no guilt Monday and be renewed and refreshed with a tasty hot smoothie!

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Cinnamon Apple Porridge

This Monday morning I am visiting family, so I am in a hotel and unable to make my Monday morning soup. But I have a simple porridge, which is a similar consistency of soup for you. This recipe may be made in a microwave or even just boiling water poured over the top. I am using a gluten-free oat bran. It is high in fiber to keep you satiated longer. You could even add a scoop of protein powder to it, like I’ll be doing. It’s easy to portion out the ingredients before you leave for a trip or work.

You’ll need:

1/3 cup of oat bran

1 apple sauce pouch

1-2 teaspoons cinnamon

1 cup water

1 scoop of protein powder(optional)

1 tablespoon natural sweetener(optional)

Place all in a microwaveable container or a heat proof one if pouring boiling water over top. Microwave for 2 minutes and let it stand in microwave for 3 minutes. If you are steeping it, pour the boiling water over from a hot pot or electric tea kettle and cover. Let stand 10 minutes or until thickened. This makes too much to put in a regular sized mug, so don’t make the mistake like I did the first time! A half pint mason jar works well.

I am using these for the ingredients:

*

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*//ws-na.amazon-adsystem.com/widgets/q?ServiceVersion=20070822&OneJS=1&Operation=GetAdHtml&MarketPlace=US&source=ac&ref=qf_sp_asin_til&ad_type=product_link&tracking_id=beckoningharm-20&marketplace=amazon&region=US&placement=B003PWC346&asins=B003PWC346&linkId=f3bc923ff3a5ba45bca340148cad9d0e&show_border=false&link_opens_in_new_window=false&price_color=333333&title_color=0066c0&bg_color=ffffff

*Protein powder: http://shopmyplexus.com/awesomelife/products/plexus-96.html

*I do get minor compensation for the links on my page*

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Cauliflower soup

Cauliflower doesn’t illicit much in the way of thoughts of delicious and yummy foods, but it has so many nutrients in it to not be ignored. Cauliflower is a wellspring of vitamin C, vitamin K, folate, pantothenic acid, and vitamin B6. It is also a great source of choline, dietary fiber, omega-3 fatty acids, manganese, phosphorus, and biotin. Additionally, it is a good source of vitamin B1, B2, and B3, the minerals potassium and magnesium, and protein. As you see, though lacking color in the white variety, it is so healthy for you!

This soup is from a blog I enjoy reading myself. Here is the link: http://www.healthhomeandhappiness.com/slow-cooker-carrot-cauliflower-soup-with-coconut-milk-and-caramelized-onions.html

I didn’t have any coconut milk on hand, so I just added in more broth. It is great that it’s made in a slow cooker as then you could cook it overnight for your morning soup. I did prepare mine on Sunday as I had time to do so. I love not having to think about what I have to eat in the morning when it can be hectic. Soups are warm, filling and packed with nutrients!

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Traditions for Christmas

What are some Christmas traditions you and your family do during this season? Are there any that don’t bring you joy? What are the ones that do?

Some traditions are passed down, others are made by society, still others are created by ourselves over the years.

I’ve kept several from my family. Some are putting up a tree, but we do a fake one and my parents always did a real tree. Stockings are hung and filled for Christmas morning. Santa will come for the children.

I’ve always enjoyed baking cookies and making a gingerbread house with my family and children.

I do miss holiday parties as I don’t work outside of the home and it would be nice to have at least one small holiday party.

This year our family is parring down extremely in the gift giving department. Over the years, we haven’t exchanged much with extended family as they moved further away. For awhile we all did a drawing as we had a large extended family, then we stopped doing that. I still love to send and receive Christmas cards, letters and pictures. I feel this is enough for us. For my children, this year we are trying to not focus on the gifts they will receive Christmas morning. I’ve been wanting to implement this for several years, but just haven’t. With us wanting to travel in an RV, this has been a catalyst in making this happen this year. We are going to still do stockings, but only have one or two small gifts. We are going to take the three girls to an American Girl Doll store to pick out a few items and spend the day there enjoying the things they offer(bistro or desert bar and activities).

One thing that my children enjoy and that I do as well, is Christmas sticks. These were originally made at a mom’s group I was in several years ago and they have evolved. This year I bought new, large, colorful popsicle sticks to write on and updated some of the things to do on them. One thing I do is remove the more time-intensive activities during the week and add them in on the weekends. You may write whatever activities you would find joy doing.

Here is a list of what we have currently:

Open one present early

Write a letter to Santa

Make Christmas cookies

Watch a Christmas movie

Go see Santa

Color Christmas pictures

Decorate tree

Set up nativity

Pay “find the wiseman”

Make a paper chain or snowflakes

Make reindeer food

Hot chocolate and Christmas lights

Shopping trip with mom or dad

Christmas crafts

Christmas music dance party

Make Christmas colored pancakes

Read Christmas books

Family pizza night

Take goodies to neighbors

Trip to library for Christmas books

Make homemade hot chocolate

Special family outing

Build a gingerbread house

Bake cookies for santa

 

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Pantry+Meal Planning

I love my huge pantry, but it is so easy for me to keep buying food to fill up the shelves because one, I have the space and two, I will buy things on sale just because I have the room to store it. This creates some problems over time if I’m not careful. You might be wondering how on earth this could become a problem? Well, I tend to forget what I bought and then open my pantry to look at what I have for meal inspiration, but I seem to have everything, but nothing that will make a cohesive meal. This is where a large pantry will fail you if you don’t plan. I have not been much for meal planning in the past, but recently I have started to. I am still learning and trying not to impulse buy food on sale or stockpile for when we are in our RV, we definitely won’t have the space to store this extra food.

First, you’ll want to go through your pantry and take stock of what you have currently. This may seem daunting at first, but take an hour or two(set a timer even!) and throw away any items that are expired. Have a paper and pen on hand and write down what you have. The items that are going to expire soon, put a star or check next to them. If there’s canned or packaged food that you just don’t see you or your family eating, donate it to a food pantry, now is a great time to do this. Try your hardest to plan meals around what you currently have on hand, then you’ll be able to start fresh with meal planning.

With meal planning, I’ve learned to keep it simple. I may some weeks get bored with my menu, but it does make nightly dinner preparation easier in the long run. My girls love tacos, so I have adopted “taco Tuesday.” I never was a fan of things like this, but it does take off a whole lot of pressure to know that at least one day of the week, everyone will be happy with the meal and it is easy to keep these items on hand.

I typically grocery shop on Tuesday’s as I’m right by the store coming from the library’s toddler story time, so I try to make my weekly meal plan on Sunday’s or Monday’s. Monday’s we typically have leftovers or if no leftovers, then breakfast for dinner.

I like to use the app, OurGroceries, which is nice to keep a running list. I have not used a paper grocery list in ages as I would forget it frequently at home and not remember what I need and I always have my phone on me. I do jot my weekly menu plan on a scrap piece of paper mostly, but lately I’ve liked to use a small note pad or book so I’m able to glance back at meals.

As you can see from the picture of one section of my pantry, I’m still trying to pair down. So, be easy on yourself and be happy that you’ll have more time, better money management, and less stress from simple meal planning.

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Sup, Sup, Soup?!

I have a confession to make. I have a love affair with soups. They are so comforting, warming, and filling, especially on colder days! I prepped a soup on Sunday to have for my Monday soup post. It is a very green soup, packed with protein and healthy kale. It is part of the detox I am doing and I got the recipe from Rocco Dispirito’s cookbook, The Negative Calorie Diet. Here’s a link to check it out. https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0062378139/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&tag=beckoningharm-20&camp=1789&creative=9325&linkCode=as2&creativeASIN=0062378139&linkId=443d99b8e5db505babbe2c01e7d1666a

The soup is called “Caldo Verde” or Mixed Leafy Greens with Chickpeas. Caldo verde is a traditional soup from Portugal. It means “green broth,” which I’m sure you are able to see how green it is from the picture! Rocco calls this his “hot smoothie.” I like that name! I’ve been doing hot smoothies, aka, soups, for the past couple months since my morning smoothies were too cold for me to drink with this cooler weather.

Every Monday, during the winter months, I try to post a new soup idea or recipe. Stay tuned for more! Also, comment if you have tried this soup before or are going to!

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Detox

This week I have been doing a detox with a group on Facebook. It is a bit different than ones I’ve done in the past. I guess by different, I mean, I’ve done cleanses with mostly food. This one is whole, clean foods, combined with supplements, herbs, and detox baths. One of the new things I’m trying out with this detox is bentonite clay. I know I’m probably late on this band-wagon, but I just hadn’t thought about using it before now. I have heard and read a lot about this clay in the past. Monday night I used it in a detox bath along with Epsom salts, raw apple cider vinegar, and EO’s mixed in fractionated coconut oil. It was so nice! Yesterday I started taking the bentonite clay internally after I had “bloomed” it per directions. I’m not sure how I feel about taking it internally so far. I have had some tummy issues today. I’m hoping it will dissipate by tomorrow after my body is used to it. I’m also taking Chlorella, which I have not had before. It helps with getting those heavy metals that may have accumulated over time in your body.
I have also been taking my typical supplements; Biocleanse(magnesium), Probio5(probiotic), and MegaX(omega).
My favorite recipe so far has been a blueberry mint quinoa. I have made one breakfast quinoa before, but didn’t care for it. This one had you pulse the quinoa in a blender with the liquid. It made it cook up more like a porridge, which I enjoy!

Here’s the bentonite clay and the chlorella I am taking/using:
Pure Clay – Premium Calcium Bentonite Clay Food Grade Powder – Heavy Metal Detox and Cleanse

Organic Chlorella Tablets Broken Cell Wall Form – 4 Organic Certifications including USDA, Ecocert, Naturland & EU – Maximum CGF (Chlorella Growth Factor) Levels – Perfectly Compliments Spirulina

*I do get minor compensation from these links to the products

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Welcome!

I’m so happy to be here by letting you learn a little about me, my path to healthy eating, healthy lifestyle and of course, to get to know you! I love the online community feel that we are able to have now a days. It’s such a wonderful way to connect and share little bits of our lives.

On this blog I’ll be writing about food, posting recipes, exercise, bits of my daily life, and musings. I also am hoping to start traveling in an RV with my husband, three daughters, dog, and cat. So, I’ll be sharing about this soon! Please bear with me as I am new to blogging and website workings!

I grew up with a large family and I was the oldest daughter. I have always loved babies, food, the outdoors, traveling, and learning. My mother was a hippie at heart and I grew up eating lots of vegetables, smoothies, tofu, and sprouts. She used essential oils before they became popular, homeopathic medicine, and other healing herbs. I learned a lot from her and continue to learn to this day. I fell off the healthy band wagon for awhile when I went off on my own, but soon found my way back. I feel so much better eating clean and exercising than when I’m not.

I was a massage therapist for twelve years and loved helping people feel better. From there  I decided to become a labor doula and then I became a home birth midwife and RN. Currently, I am staying at home with my three precious daughters and loving the little things in life, taking it day by day. I now have time to do some creative activities like blogging and cooking.