Monday, June 27, 2011

Mixing it Up!

Sorry for the little hiatus, sometimes life just gets busy.
I have been struggling a little... I'm usually so happy but lately have been a bit down. I know it all stems from being a stay at home mom, which can be very lonely. I love my three kiddos dearly and love that I am able to stay home, but I'm human and still get lonely. That and we live in a small boring community.

My husband and I have been tossing around the idea of moving. I am all for it, but a move would mean my hubby would have to commute about an hour. Anyone have any commuting advice?

Oh the struggles! We will figure it all out...I hope ;)

Mixing it UP!

I love running, in fact it's typically my main form of exercise. I'm known to get into a comfortable routine and forget to mix it up. So my main focus last week and this week is to shock my body. What I've been doing is implementing pilates, yoga, and today I went to a kick ass boot camp class.

Oh my thighs were burning, but I surprisingly felt strong while doing squats and cardio. Once we started busting out push ups and planks I realized that is my weakness.

Makes sense; of course my legs and cardiovascular system felt strong with all the running I do. It's not like you see someone running with weights above their head. Ooh maybe I should try that sometime. I need to start doing more planks and push ups, that's for sure!

What do you do to mix up your routine??


Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Spice it up!

Everyone needs a little spice in their life, right? 

So here's what you'll be needing to kick it up a notch.

Meet my new best friend! I could not wait to try out my new food processor and I knew I had to make one of my favorite things to try this new beauty out. Hummus my friends, it's all about hummus! I love hummus, I eat it with raw veggies, crackers, and my favorite is to use it in place of salad dressing. Previously I had the Cuisinart Mini Prep, but I brunt it up making banana soft serve -- it was even smoking!

This food processor is amazing! Easy to use, powerful, cleans up nicely --not to mention it is slices, dices, seals tight, and has two nesting bowls! 

LOOK at this creamy goodness! Oh my!

Smoky Chipotle Hummus

2 cans Garbanzo Beans - drained and set liquid aside.
2 tsp. Cumin
3/4 tsp. Ground Black Pepper
3/4 tsp. Salt
1/4 C. Fresh Lemon Juice
2T. Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1t. chopped Garlic
1/3 C. Tahini
3 Whole Chipotle Chiles in Adobo Sauce (1-2 for less kick)
2 tsp. Adobo Sauce
1/2 C. chopped Cilantro
6 - oil packed Sun Dried Tomatoes

Mix everything in your processor and blend until smooth. Add garbanzo bean liquid as needed to thin out the mixture. To turn down the heat a bit, use less chiles and adobo sauce. 

Top on your favorite salad!

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Here's to the Dads!

Here's to my three favorite men, my dad, my husband, and my brother. Happy Father's Day to three wonderful men!

 My husband is such a great daddy to his three little princess's. He's not one of those men that feels he has to have a son, he's in love with his little girls. He can be found sipping tea at a tea party, pretending to be Prince Charming at the Royal Ball, has had bows in his hair, tiaras on his head, and even allows them to apply a little lip gloss from time to time. He loves his girls with all of his heart, we're blessed to have him.

Growing up my dad was always the fun one and would allow me to get away with more. He would always say "yes" when I knew my mom would say "no". He taught me how to play tennis and basketball, we spent many nights on our bball court playing pig and horse. He taught my how to ride my bike, walk on stilts, and drive a car. I love seeing my little girls walk hand in hand with my dad, their tiny hands in his is priceless.

My brother is a fantastic father as well. He has two sons and a daughter and they are his world. He's a busy hands on dad, playing basketball and football with the boys and hitting the tennis courts with his daughter. He can be strict, but he's really a big marshmallow inside. I wish I could post a picture of him, but he is a federal agent and won't allow me to post his picture on the internet for security reasons.

Happy Father's Day to all the the wonderful Father's out there and also a Happy Father's Day to all of the single mother's who also wear the Father Hat.

Friday, June 17, 2011

Herbivore vs. Carnivore

Being a fairly new vegetarian hasn't been challenging at home, but large gatherings outside of our home is a whole nother story

I live in the Mid-West for gosh sakes, I'm surrounded by livestock farmers. Growing up as a kid every dinner contained some form of meat -- my parents love fillets, chicken, turkey, and pork. Tomorrow we're heading to my brother's home to celebrate my Moms 35 years of educating our youth and congratulating her on her recent retirement. Everyone will be there, aunts, uncles, cousins, the whole gang. I haven't told my family that I'm a veggie lover, my husband obviously knows and I have told my mom (her response was, "Won't your hair fall out?")  -- but everyone else is clueless. Oddly I try to hide this, not because I'm not a proud vegetarian-- but because I don't want to deal with the debate that will follow. I don't want to argue with my family members about why Americans aren't healthy and why there's a huge increase in heart disease, blood pressure, diabetes, and obesity. I'm passionate about making healthy choices for myself and my family, but I really dread confrontation as well. I love my family and want them to be happy healthy individuals with low LDL's -- but I also believe there is a time and a place for hot topics.

Tomorrow I'll be packing some healthy snacks for the car ride and I'm hopeful there will be a veggie tray and fresh fruit. I might even stash a Larabar in my diaper bag for a quick snack while changing Lil' Bit's diaper in another room.

It's a good thing Thanksgiving is five months away, I need the time to figure this all out.

Do you hide your healthy eating from others? 
Do you think I should be more loud and proud?

Debunk Your Funk

Are you feeling better? Why yes, thank you so much for asking! 

Nothing beats a GOOD RUN! It's a great way to Debunk Your funk!

I laced up my Saucony's and set out to pound some pavement. I wasn't in the mood for my iTunes - instead I listened to Pandora. It was a bit muggy, so I just ran my 5K loop.

My view when I start out every run leaving my neighborhood. 

I love being drenched in sweat, it feels so cleansing. Nothing like expelling some toxins right out of your pores! Like my running headband? I love them, they really do not slip! This one is a Chica Band, I also have a Sweaty Band, and Deshler Designs bands. Deshler Designs is an Etsy seller, her bands are cheaper and actually my favorite.

Always stretch after a run, your body thanks you! I stretch and admire my little Picasso's sidewalk chalk gallery.

Chicks & Clicks

I have a lot on my mind, but first let me share with you what I've eaten so far today.

I slept in, so I didn't have time for a smoothie bowl - I literally had enough time to put on some deodorant, brush my teeth, & throw on some clothes before we dashed out the door for M's tennis lesson. Little time for yourself when you have to pick out outfits for three little ones, make sure shoes and socks are on and lastly do hair. No worries the little ones were fed thanks to Daddy.

I grabbed one of these bad boys and jumped in the van.

Having healthy baked goods in the house is nice when you're in a rush.


Delicious Salad - in the mix:

Fresh Spinach
Chopped Red Pepper
Chopped Zucchini
Cherry Tomatoes
Black Beans
Red Quinoa
One Large dollop of Smoky Chipotle Hummus ~ my very own recipe, look for it soon!

I really like using hummus in place of salad dressing. 

Chicks and Clicks ~ 

 Seriously why are women so clicky with their groups of friends? GRRR!! 
I'm feeling a little low today because I have been booted out of a small group of girlfriends. Living in a small town is rough, everyone knows everyone's business, and it's easy to see when you've not been invited to the mommy/kid pool day at a friends house. 

It's tough to avoid seeing all your friends cars when you're on your way home from the grocery. I didn't get the pool day memo and didn't get it much last summer as well.  Wondering what I've done or said to stop getting the memos? 

Sadly it slowly started last year after Lil' Bit was born - I felt like I didn't hear from these women anymore because I was at home with a new baby and they were out of that stage with their children. Then the icing on the cake was when my husband and I decided this year to leave our church for another church. These women were my church friends and I knew when we made the decision to leave the church that I would probably not hear from these women anymore....sure enough, I was right!

We made the decision to leave our church for many reasons, one being that we believed differently about the the role of women in the church. My husband and I are raising three lovely little girls and the last thing we want to teach them is that they can't be heard or hold leadership just because they are girls. Religion is a tough topic and I wish it weren't.... it should be an easy topic and as Christians we should all love one another and respect each other greatly. 

Being at Stay at Home Mom can be very lonely, but I need to just get over it and move on -- trying not to let the small things in life bother me.

I'll get out of this funk as soon and my husbands arrives home from work and I can head out for a nice run. 

Question of the Day: Have you had your feelings hurt when friends have decided to exclude you?
How did you deal with it? 

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Breakfast of Champions!

This morning I whipped up my nutritious packed Vegan Smoothie Bowl.
I love making smoothly bowls and typically eat one every morning. They are so big and smooth, I feel like I'm eating dessert for breakfast--which I really wish I could--but then I would be large again.

Vegan Smoothie Bowl

Vega Whole Food Optimizer Berry Flavor, this powder is packed full of plant based whole foods. It packs a punch, you can read more about it here.You'll see it's not cheap, but I believe that medical bills are also not cheap, so my health comes first.

 Toss in some frozen mixed berries, blueberry, strawberry, raspberry, and blackberry. 
I also add some frozen banana slices and sprinkle in Chia seeds.

One big heaping handful of fresh spinach.

A little xanthum gum for thickening and your choice of non dairy milk. 
Today I used coconut milk, it' my new favorite.
I use my awesome Vitamix blender, love that thing! 
You'll have to add milk as needed.

Check out that Berry Thick Creamy Goodness
It's like eating a cold thick creamy pudding.

Then I like to sprinkle a 1/4 C. of Whole Foods
Hemp Granola for a little crunch. 

What's your favorite go to Breakfast of Champions?

Diaper Duty

Today I'm busy washing Lil' Bit's diapers. Yes, I'm one of those crazy mothers that uses cloth diapers.  


Not as gross as I thought it was when I first heard about cloth diapering. I didn't use cloth diapers for M and A, only because I didn't know much about them. A friend of mine gave them a try with her third daughter and I figured why not? Once I did a little research and saw just how much money you can save, I was sold. They say you can save thousands of dollars cloth diapering, but I'm not about to sit down with my calculator to check on this accuracy-- I have three kids to chase!

I've been cloth diapering for 11 months now and I'm happy with them. Not only are they super cute, they are also very soft. Cloth diapering isn't for everyone and I only use them at home. If we're traveling, I buy Huggies.

 These dirty diapers don't look nasty, it's really not that gross.

 Some of my diaper stash, look how cute and comfy they are. The wash cloths are my wipes. 
 No big ugly yucky stains, they wash clean very easily.

I keep them nice and organized, that way I can grab one when I need it. 

I use Bum Genius 4.0's one size pocket diapers. Then I also have a few Happy Heinys and Cloth By Tel Diapers. 

 Just busy reading a book in my comfy little diaper.

What's that? You dig my cute diapers? Me too!

Thinking about one day using cloth diapers? It can be overwhelming trying to figure out what all you really need. Email me, I would love to help you and your little one.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Muffin Doughnuts

What a dreary rainy day - M's tennis lessons were canceled this morning due to the wet courts. So what's a mother to do on a day like today? Bake of course! But not just any baking, vegan baking. My little one's love muffins, so I decided on Blueberry Vegan Muffins, and I also whipped up some Vegan Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins. Oh my gosh these muffins are super moist and my kitchen smelled amazing!

Lil' Bit hung out in her high chair while I started to make some magic in the kitchen. M & A were excited to help me measure, stir, and lick the spoons. One of the pleasures you have to give up as a mother sometimes, but I'm happy to allow them to be my official taste testers. If the batter pasts the test, so will the finished product.

 I love muffins, but there is something about the shape of a doughnut so I like to use my doughnut tin as well.

 These are the Yummy Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins

 Look at those amazing blueberries!

Vegan Blueberry Doughnut Muffins

1/4 C. Earth Balance

1/2 C. Apple Sauce

1/2 tsp. Salt

1C. Organic sugar

1 C. Organic all purpose flour

1C. Organic Whole wheat flour

1 Tbs. baking powder

1tsp. Vanilla Extract

1/2 C. Soy milk, coconut milk, or almond milk ( I used soy)

2 C. Fresh Blueberries

Preheat oven to 350 degrees, spray doughnut pan or line muffin cups.
Bake 25 minutes in muffin cups, or 15-20 in doughnut pan.
I just watch mine and test with a tooth pick. ENJOY!