Saturday, December 31, 2016

Easy monthly meal prep!

Tomorrow morning I am starting  the year off right! As a busy mom who works full time cooking meals at home every night can be a challenge! I am going to try something this month to see if I can make it a little easier. I am setting up a week of meals which will include a full grocery list, one day for eating out, and one Paleo dessert each week. Then I will be repeating this week each week for  the month. I asked each person what meal they wanted and I made a list. Here is a list of what we are having:
Hamburgers with sliced white and sweet potatoes
Spaghetti With rice noodles
Chicken pasta with rice noodles
Diced chicken with mashed cauliflower and veggies
Steak tacos or nachos
Pork chops with rice and veggies
The rice noodles and regular white rice will be the only grains I will be having. Any dairy that I use for the family I will simply fix my plate before I make the rest for them. Studies show that white rice has no ill effect on the digestive track and is easy for people to digest  which is what makes it ok for a Paleo diet. The idea of the Paleo diet is to avoid foods that cause an autoimmune reaction and foods that are hard for the body to digest. Ok so since I got way off track let's get back to easy meal prep! So I will make this first week of meals and then repeat this same week of meals all month. It will make Sunday meal prep super easy since I will know exactly what I need to do! Each Monday we will have hamburgers which means no guess work when it comes to what is for dinner. Easy peasy πŸ‘Œ
I will be posting later how I am taking One Step at a time towards a new year new me! Happy New Year and happy meal prep and menu planning! 😘

Wednesday, December 28, 2016

Breakfast and why it is important



     Starting your day out with a good breakfast is super important! Your body hasn't eaten in about 8 hours so it is in desperate need for nourishment! If you wait till lunch than you are looking at 17 hours since your last meal if you had dinner around 7pm. At this point your body is mad at you and preparing for shut down like a toddler stomping his foot and throwing a tantrum. He wants food and he wants it NOW! Your metabolism is greatly effected when you don't keep it running and you keep it running by feeding it. Just like a car needs gas or a bike needs to be peddled a body needs food to keep it going. Lack of time seems to be an excuse, but this breakfast took about 10 mins to make and you can not tell me you can get through a drive thru quicker than that! This is 3 eggs, spinach, orange bell peppers, ham, and goat cheese. Yummy! The bell peppers are already cut and in the freezer ready to go thanks to meal prep and the spinach is a ready to go bag from Aldi's. I bought the Ham as a big bone in ham that I cooked in the crock pot with brown sugar and pineapples πŸ‘ŒTake time to have breakfast and your body will thank you! 😘




Saturday, December 17, 2016

Welcome!

                                                       
      I am so glad you stopped by! In just two weeks we start a new year! We tend to set up New Year's resolutions with great expectations to make this year THE BEST EVER! Well I would love to help make that actually happen this time! So often when we make these resolutions we make really big changes. "I am never going to eat processed sugar again!" or " I am going to exercise 5 days a week for 30 minutes!" One or two weeks in and we are sitting on the couch eating ice cream. I am a firm believer that success happens when you take baby steps. Can you go all in and be successful? Heck ya you can! For myself and so many others jumping in full force with both feet leads us back to the same habits we are fighting to end. You may ask yourself what do I mean by "baby steps"? So glad you asked!
     First and foremost you have to be really honest with yourself and know your strengths and weaknesses.  If right now you are eating ice cream every night then cutting it out forever probably isn't really going to happen. After you have had a heart to heart talk with your self you need to also be honest as to why you want to start the path to a healthy life. Once you have done that then it is time to start setting some goals! I will get a little more into my goals and why I am choosing them a little later, but let me start off with how I am going to do it. 
    January has 4 weeks in it so each week I am going to choose one change to make. Week one it may be something like going to bed early. All week that is  your only focus and you make sure you stick to it! Week two you will continue with week one's goal, but you will add a new one. It may be things like eat more veggies, drink more water, work out two days, etc.. Week 3 you will add a new thing to your list, but you will keep doing the things from week 1 and 2 still. Make sense? 
     Being healthy involves so many aspects of life so these 4 new habits can be a wide range of things. A few more examples are spending some "me" time each night to take a moment and relax, read the bible, spend some time listening to worship music, try a new vegetable each day, drink less coffee, ect.. These are just some ideas, only you know you so take these next two weeks really thinking about what you want to add, change, or eliminate from your daily life and make a plan! 
     For me I cut out gluten 4 years ago due to being diagnosed with my second autoimmune disease. The more research I do the more I know that I also need to cut out dairy, soy, and corn products. 😩 I have spent the last year or so doing a pretty good job with it, but I have not been fully committed.  Each time I eat the food my body is having a immune reaction which obviously isn't' good. So in January I am going to focus on each of those and make sure that what I am putting in my body is what MY BODY needs not what MY BRAIN craves.
     I am also going to try and simplify meal prep. Instead of each week trying to come up with new and exciting meals that my kids may or may not like I am going to pick one week's worth of meals. Then those meals will be on repeat for the month. For example: Monday-hamburgers, Tuesday- spaghetti......
Then every Monday we eat Hamburgers and every Tuesday we have spaghetti.  I am going to choose meals that I can easily adjust to fit my Paleo needs and allow my family a little more freedom. So on Tuesday I will scoop my food after the meat and veggies are done and the family will eat it with rice noodles and sauce. Each Saturday will be a different meal and our dessert time! Instead of eating ice cream which for us is a regular "issue". It always happens to find its way into our freezer πŸ™ˆ. Below is the dessert we tried tonight!
     Flourless Zucchini chocolate Brownies 😲 Say what?? yep you read that right and guess what?? They were great!! Even my daughter who won't eat a straight up Zucchini at all gobbled it right up! The beauty of hiding veggies is a mom's best friend! Here is the link where I got the recipe at and I followed it exactly. You might could try and shred the zucchini smaller, but I just used a cheese grater and it worked fine.  Here is the link and two different views of it to give you and idea how much zucchini you can see and how moist they are! πŸ’“
http://www.thecomfortofcooking.com/2015/08/flourless-zucchini-chocolate-brownies.html




Well that's it for today! Thank you so much for stopping by! Have an amazing rest of your weekend! 😘

Here are two links to past blogs with a few post if you are wanting some good stuff to read.

http://thepaththatleadmetopaleo.blogspot.com/
http://twobylucy.blogspot.com/

Thursday, March 6, 2014

The Power of Words

There are only 26 letters in the English language. These letters put together can do amazing things! They also have the ability to break a person. The old saying "sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me isn't necessarily true. Ask any child who has ever been told they won't amount to anything or that they are stupid and they can tell you about the emotional scars left by words. Words can lift you up or tear you down. Words can make you feel beautiful or ugly. Words can make or break you.

In elementary school Becky Russell told me I had pointy elbows and trust me when I say it was not a compliment. I am now 37 and I am still very aware of   my pointy elbows. Not one other person in all those years has ever said anything good or bad about my elbows, yet the scars and embarrassment Becky caused me that day in the lunch room has stuck with me for years. If I were to see her today she more than likely would have no idea who I even was.

This weekend I went to the Encounter with my church which is a ladies weekend retreat. One of the speakers said "If the words you have spoken this weekend were to pop up above your head in a little box would they be words that speak life or filled with poison? Such a great analogy! We  all say things we don't mean sometimes or at least I  hope I am not the only one who has spoken in anger before. Do I wish I could say I have been perfect and I have never raised my voice and spoken to my kids or husband with harsh words? Heck yea I do! I am human and I make mistakes. Let's take a look at the power words actually have when we use them.

Words have the power to bring unmeasurable joy! The first time your baby says momma or dada! Need I say more? Such happiness over such tiny words. The first time you hear I love you from your significant other or when they whisper sweet nothings in your ear. The compliments from a friend or even better a stranger! The news of a baby, or that you got the job you wanted, the words "Will you marry me?" All of these bring joy beyond belief!

Words have the power to bring sadness and hurt. Words like cancer, death, and  miscarriage can bring on a crippling  amount of sorrow. The moment when your child says "I don't want to hold your hand anymore" or " please drop me off here so my friends don't see me with you." Phrases like "You did not get accepted" or "you have not been approved". Unimaginable hurt can come from the words "I don't love you anymore", "I hate you", "I want a divorce", or " I have met someone else".

Words can bring on love and confidence. When you hear "I love you! You are awesome!" Things like "I am so proud of you!" "You are beautiful and funny and wonderful!" "I can't wait to see you!" "I have missed your face!" " You are a great mother, friend, person, wife, husband, or child." Words like "I love you no matter what."

Words can bring on anger and self doubt. "You will never amount to anything", You're just like your father/mother and he/she was good for nothing!",  "I wish you were more like your sister/brother", "You must be stupid to not have known that", or  "What's the matter with you!". Words like hate, idiot, loser, ugly, pathetic, stupid, fat, wimp, are just a few of the words people say on a daily basis that can cause everlasting emotional scars.

Words have to power to forgive and be forgiven  by saying " I am sorry" and "please forgive me". Words can teach children to talk and preach the word of God.


I for one am going to be more mindful of the words I say. I want to speak life into my children. I want to speak always in love to my husband. I want my friends, family, children, and spouse to know I adore them. I want my children to be confident that as they fall asleep they are loved and cared for. I want them to never doubt how I feel for them and I want them to never regret anything I have ever said to them. I want my husband to know my love for him runs deep. I want my words to express respect and love to my parents for raising me. I want my words to express gratitude to God for sending his son to die on the cross for me. I want my words to speak like and not poison. What do your words say? What do you want them to say?



Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Fairy Tale Marriages

   Do they really exists? From the days of Snow White, Cinderella, and Sleeping Beauty the idea of a Prince coming and sweeping of off our feet has been a magical dream. These stories always end with "And they lived happily ever after..." I think today's versions of a "Fairy Tale" marriage may be a little different.

    In my opinion it is unrealistic to think your marriage will never involve arguments or disagreements. Your marriage will be different from everyone's because  you are marrying your soul mate and you love him/her with every fiber in your body.

    So the question remains do they really exists? Sure they do, but it is not as simple as "and they lived happily ever after". A fairy tale marriage involves first and foremost commitment. The desire to be committed to each other no matter what from day one till death do us part. They also involve being submissive. If women submit to their husbands and the husbands love their wives  as Christ loved the church  as the bible states in Ephesians 5: 22-33 then we will be striving to please each other. Another important aspect of a fairy tale marriage is compromise. Compromising your wants, needs, and desires for your spouses. Fairy tale marriages also have couples who are willing to work hard at it. Marriages are not easy and as humans we have the tendency to be selfish which doesn't work in a marriage. We have probably all heard the expression "rose colored glasses" which simply means you are looking at the world  with a "distorted" view making everything amazing. You look at your spouse  like they are the most amazing, beautiful, sexiest thing you have ever laid eyes on. The 3 D's are a part of this marital equation as well and they are devotion, dedication, and desire. You are devoted to your spouse and only your spouse. You have their back in every situation. They have your dedication to be there through the good times and bad and through sickness and in health. You have the desire to be together and you enjoy each others company. You choose to hang out together in your free time. Last and certainly not least fairy tale marriages involve patience. Patience to deal with the husbands when they have the common cold, yet act like they are dying. Patience for the wives when they are PMSing and cry over everything. Patience to love, learn, and grow old together.

   Love in patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil, but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trust, always hopes, always perseveres. 1 Corinthians 13:4-8.  Fairy Tale Marriages don't just happen they are earned.

Monday, March 3, 2014

Facebook and Marriage

     It's Friday night and your are doing your usual super exciting routine of browsing Facebook. You mindlessly scroll through reading about everyone's day ( the good, the bad, and the boring). " Oh look" you think to yourself  "Jim and Barb are celebrating  15 years today and she loves him more today than the day they got married. Really?? Is that even possible?? Michelle and Jason remind everyone they are going out on their weekly date complete with a ooey, gooey, snuggly picture of the two of them. Caption saying how essential it is to have one on one time if you want  a happy marriage. You continue to scroll and continue to read all the while you don't realize you are setting yourself up for failure. It may not happen the first time, but slowly and surely you start to compare yourself/your marriage to these fairy tale marriages that only exists on Facebook.

     Sure parts of it are true, but so much is left out.  Jim and Barb are in fact celebrating 15 years today and yes Barb is hopelessly in love with Jim, but what she didn't post is last year she and Jim felt they had no other option and were headed for divorce. And yes Michelle and Jason make it a priority to go out each week because they both came from divorced families and they know the devastation it can cause to a child. Social media is awesome and I for one love it and no I do not think you should share every fight you and your spouse have. But I think we as a society need to be mindful of what we post and more importantly what we read.

    Over the years I have personally talked to two women who called to vent ( venting is good for the soul). Both felt their marriages were doomed and headed for divorce. Less than 24 hours after speaking on the phone with these ladies they posted a status saying how in love they were with their husbands and how awesome their spouses were. Instead of happiness I felt sadness because I knew that some other wife was struggling right now in her marriage and she needed someone she could talk to who could support her, pray with her, listen to her, sympathize and understand her. What she found on Facebook was another woman who has the best husband and is so very much in love. I imagine her walking away from her computer feeling lonely, hopeless, sad, and defeated. All of her friends have these "perfect" husbands, and "perfect" marriages, and they are "perfectly" in love. They could never understand what it feels like to be married to  a stranger. To go to bed each night with your spouse with in arms reach, but feeling absolutely alone. They have no idea what you are going through. Social media is a flip book of our lives and we are the author and publishers and  usually only allow the good to be published.

      For me personally  I have been married almost 17 years and we have had our ups and downs. I have wanted a divorce more than that I care to admit, I have loved him more than the day we got married over and over again. We have fought and yelled and kissed and made up. We have gone to bed angry and  we have held grudges for more than a day. We have forgiven and moved on and grown up together. We will do all these over again in the next 17 years and if I am being honest probably in the next 6 months.
We can not compare ourselves to  Jim and Barb or Michelle and Jason ( fake people by the way) for the simple reason we are not them. Imagine going to  the library and all the books had a different family on the cover, but the stories inside were the same. We would never go to the library! God created us all as individuals and our marriages should be our own unique love stories. When you read someone's status update keep in mind that is one sentence in the book of their lives.

What is in your book?

I am a wife, mother, sister, daughter, friend and woman. Each of these come with their own emotions and responsibilities. Each with their own stories. Most of us like to talk and share these stories, but do we really tell everything? We all have heard the saying " You can't judge a book by it's cover" well this is especially true of women. We all have our cover photo that represents us; we are smiling, happy, clean, and perfect. Our back cover tells a little about ourselves; how long we have been married, how many kids, hobbies, where we attend church etc. This is what we share the people.....the exterior of our "books". Rarely do we take the time to read/listen to the pages of someone's book. It usually goes like this
"How are you today?
"I am great!" "You?"
" We are doing wonderful! Great to see you! Let's get together soon!!"
"Call me!"
Inside you are screaming "I not great!! I am sad,I am lonely, my marriage is struggling, I need a break, I need advice, I need a friend.'
We as a whole do not take the time to get to the nitty gritty of the book.....our lives. We have all been there and we have all needed that someone we can call and really talk to and know that  they will not judge and they will  listen. Be that someone. If you see a mom struggling with her child go over and offer your help instead of thinking " gosh that child is a brat!! The parent must be doing something wrong. Mine would never......" It is so easy to forget the struggles you once faced yourself when they are behind you. We you say "Let's do lunch!" make the effort to actual go to lunch with them. Take the time to listen and "read the pages" of their books. Pursue friendships and show that person that you care and they are important. It can mean the world to someone. It can change their life.
Each part of us has it's own unique story, but we can all find common ground when we are  honest and share our stories. Do not let your attitude rob  you of one of   God's greatest blessings. Friendship