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dreams

24 May

When I was younger, I know I had several dreams working around in my squishy little brain. I don’t remember all of them, but I do know that from about first grade to sixth, one of them was that I wanted to be a cartoonist. I’m not exactly sure where this idea came from (probably my dad), but in my spare time I used to love to draw. I had my own spiraled drawing notebooks and second-hand charcoal pencils and doodled random things (mostly Looney Tunes characters), so naturally I would want to be a cartoonist. I remember being pretty good, but that could have all been in my head and/or the effects of the ‘little white lies’ of good parenting, but in reality I may have been very poorly skilled.

Regardless, I kept pursuing art. I took an art class or two in middle school. I had a very cool teacher that was modern with a touch of hippie with flowing and careless dirty blonde hair, and I wished so bad that I could be her. I again, felt like I did some quality work and moved on to high school. I took another art class freshmen year, and then that was that. I’m not sure what happened or why I didn’t pursue this “life-long” dream any further. High school was a strange time for me. Nothing too terrible, but I don’t remember much except the bad stuff. High school is a whole other story for another time, but I don’t have the slightest clue as to why I didn’t want to do anything else with art. It may have been something utterly lame as that it didn’t fit in with my schedule for required classes. It may have been that I started loving science classes more than arts and crafts. All I know is that it slowly drifted out of my focus and I moved on to other things.

With the “possible” impending rapture I couldn’t help but think about these “other” things. The things that I would have regretted if the world actually were to end. Dreams, per se, that I would really have liked to have experienced in this life.

I want to travel…specifically to Australia and Europe; Italy, France, Greece.

I want to have little ‘uns.

I want to have made more of a difference in this world.

I want to have a bakery with whimsical creations thought up by yours truly and coffee so good that you’ll never want to leave.

Even though my dreams have drifted away from creating masterful pieces of art or simply caricatures for the Sunday funnies or a huge face resembling your own on a teeny body at company picnics, I certainly have fallen head over heels for food. Playing with flavors and textures and new combinations. And even though I am quite far away from opening my own little slice of pastry heaven, I have been able to dream up some pretty wonderful creations thus far…

Dream Bars

Ingredients:

  • 1 c ground almonds
  • 6 medjool dates, pitted and cut into large chunks
  • 1/2 c dried blueberries
  • 1/4 c dried, unsweetened coconut shreds
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 1/2 tsp fresh ground ginger
  • 1/4 tsp salt

Method:

If you have only whole almonds, which is what I start out with, measure out a little less than a cup of almonds. Place in a food processor and let it whirl until you reach a size resembling a large piece of sea salt. You can let them go further if you like, but I like the almonds a little chunky. Just make sure you don’t start making almond butter! Pour the almonds in a small bowl and set aside.

Place dates in the food processor and let them whirl until they look smooth and start clumping into a big ball. Add remaining ingredients and turn on processor for about 10 seconds. Scrape down sides of the processor and then add the almonds. Turn on the processor for about 10-15 more seconds, or until the ingredients are fully incorporated and they begin to rise on the sides of the processor. When you pick up a chunk of the dough and squish it between your fingers, it should easily stay together without falling apart.

Lay out either a sheet of parchment paper or plastic wrap on the counter and pour out the dough onto the paper. You can go any way you want from here, but I use the parchment paper to mold the dough into about a 5″x5″ square and then wrap it up. You could mold yours into a brick and cut them later or shape into balls. Do what your heart tells you. Once you have the shape you want, place in the fridge for an hour or so to let the dough harden.

When I want a piece, I just go into the fridge, cut off a bar and enjoy. I would individually wrap them, if I ever had plastic wrap on hand, but I don’t so I just leave the whole disk wrapped in the parchment and cut as needed.

These bars, in my opinion are a heavenly piece of art and better than any other date-nut bar that has come out of a package.

How dreamy.

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19…

18 Apr

It’s getting very close to “the end”. But let’s not jump ahead before I’ve shared with you another couple days’ meals and snacks. Here comes a new smoothie recipe!! This is the contenda’ I was talking about. The bottom of this cup looks pink, but believe me it’s all milky colored.

Cashew Cream- the night before I placed the following in my Vitamix:

  • 1/2 c raw cashews
  • 1/2 c almond milk
I put my lid on and put it in the fridge to soak overnight. The next morning I added:
  • 1 banana
  • tbsp Barlean’s Pina colada Fish Oil
  • a couple shakes cinnamon
  • 3 ice cubes
  • another 1/4 c almond milk
  • Vanilla Clearvite
I am in looooove with this baby! After going to the most amazing church service we came home to snack on 1/2 an apple and sunbutter mixed with cinnamon and a tsp of agave. Green tea on the side and you’ve got a perfect leisurely snack!I decided that I needed a nice big salad for lunch. I’ve noticed with these big salads that unless I’ve got everything pre-chopped and ready to go, adding a bunch of components takes a good deal of time. That means that it is best if you take time when you’re not in a rush to do prep so that when you are rushed you can just throw it all together. 
This salad had:
  • brown rice
  • black olives
  • homemade hummus
  • chopped carrot
  • steamed broccoli
  • sliced cucumbers
  • spinach
  • tahini drizzle
Shortly after I had (another!) cocoa date-nut bar.
I’ve had a request to post the recipe for these guys. I really got the recipe from Ashley. But what I do is grind about a 1/2 c of hazelnuts and a 1/2 c of almonds until they are mealy. You can grind them finer if you wish, but I like mine slightly chunky. I remove the nuts out of the food processor and stick them in a bowl. Next I remove the pits of 10 large medjool dates. I stick them in the processor and let it whir until it balls up. I then add the nuts back to the processor, along with a tbsp of coconut oil, 1/2 tsp-1tsp salt and 2 T of cocoa powder. Turn on the processor and let it go until it all comes together, about 15 seconds. Turn out the dough into a bowl and shape it how you want it. Refrigerate leftovers.
I had to go to work this evening and for dinner, had another familiar smoothie. 
  • frozen cherries
  • fresh ginger
  • cinnamon
  • cardamom
  • tbsp cocoa
  • Chocolate Amazing Grass GreenSuperfood
  • almond milk
  • vanilla Clearvite
And on the side I wanted something a little more.More hummus and rice crackers.
So, that was day 19. Boom baby!
kaleigh

lovely day

16 Apr

Today was one of those days that is fit for grilling some hot dogs or beef patties (both of which I can’t have right now).

Today was meant for sitting on your lovely porch with the nutritious sun rays beaming down on your exceptionally white legs and curling up with a book and your doggies laying by your side.

Today was meant for saying goodbyes and for dreaming up futures and new recipes.

Today was for munching all day long and trying my hardest not to break the rules and garble up 5 of the special and most amazing peanut butter cookies I made last night.

Today was meant for breaking records of how many times in one day I can use the Vita-mix (4).

Today was meant for children to laugh and play on their bicycles.

All of these things except for the weiners and cow went on today, and I loved it. Today I also realized that I am so behind on reporting my daily meals and eats. It has been a busy couple of days but I most certainly have been still tracking my foods everyday. Which means that there is much to catch up on! To save you from a ridiculously long post, I’ll split up the days. But I will tell you this; I have been eating a lot of good stuff lately!

Wednesday: This day of the week always seems to be a weird day. Dinner time takes place right when we are at youth group and my eating schedule does not allow me to want to have dinner before going. This means I am usually hungry afterwards. I’ve found that generally my body likes to be on a schedule so it does weird things when I don’t follow it.

Breakfast: I started my day off with these babies…I had the time and I just couldn’t help it. Gluten-free pancakes made with garbanzo bean flour, sorghum flour and coconut flour. I topped them with chia seeds, coconut shreds, blueberries, and agave nectar. You have no idea how much these babies hit the spot!!

Luckily Kyle and I had the day off together! We spent the day running errands and enjoying the day together. On a quick stop at home between them all I threw together a Dreamy Creamy smoothie.  I drank this in the car on the way to our next stop, which just so happened to be in close proximity to a Whole Foods. After window shopping on at a few stores, we went over there looking for a little extra somethin’. I went with a small serving their Indian lentil soup (amazing!) and some Greek potatoes (not so great). During the time between getting back home and heading off to go to youth group I snacked on some apple chips that we picked up at Costco and one of my cocoa date/nut bars. After youth group, I was feeling hungry. I thought that I could get away with eating a spoonful of sunbutter…But I was still vying for a little more. I had a small cup of the minestrone I made the other day. I didn’t get a picture of that though.

Thursday: I slept pretty poorly the night before… maybe too many calories too close to bed time. Breakfast was a fresh strawberry banana smoothie.

  • fresh strawberries, about 5
  • banana
  • Barlean’s mango peach fish oil
  • 1/2 c almond milk
  • 1/2 c apple juice
  • vanilla Clearvite

While at work I had a cocoa date/nut bar… it looks really weird in this picture though. Back at home for lunch I made a new smoothie…

Apple Kale(igh) Smoothie

  • small stalk celery
  • 3/4 c kale, stems removed
  • 1/2 c apple juice
  • 1/2 banana
  • juice of half a lemon
  • 1/2 c water
  • vanilla Clearvite
  • 3-4 ice cubes

I did not think I was going to like this because at first scent of the cup… I couldn’t help but think of a lawn, but as soon as I took a sip, I fell in love.

My afternoon snack was a rice cake with sunbutter with agave and chia seeds on top. I ate it as a quick snack as I was getting ready for a hot date. You see, the hot date was in lieu of good news and for a celebration. I got promoted!!! I am so excited about this!! Kyle so lovingly made reservations at a restaurant that we had been desperately wanting to go to for a very long time.

Root Down There couldn’t be a better place to go to while on the detox. The whole experience was awesome and they were completely accommodating to my restrictions. We decided to split a bunch of small plates and we loved every one of them! Gluten free sweet potato falafel (I tried to eat around the yogurt sauce).

Mussels with a curry-wine sauce and the BEST gluten-free bread I’ve EVER had to soak up all the sauce!!Grass-fed buffalo sliders with tomato jam, pickles and house made gluten free bun, sweet potato fries on the side. This was just “ok” to me. I actually only ate half of my slider so that I could save room for dessert…Vegan strawberry mango crumble with sorbet on top. I loved this sooooo much! I definitely ate more than Kyle ;). This meal was amazing and I was so comforted to know that my food did not have any allergens sneaking up on me. It was a great way to celebrate the great news!

Afterwards we went to my brother’s adult hockey league game. They were playing in the championship game and won! Way to go bro!!

Alright, well I think that’s enough info for this post. Good evening to you and I hope this weekend is going well for you so far.

Kaleigh

2 weeks in

12 Apr

Well folks, I’ve been at this detox for two weeks now. I am still having a few issues here and there, but I would say things are 78% better. This really is a huge improvement for me. In my first post about this endeavor I stated that I would be moving to a vegetarian diet and also doing two Clearvite servings/smoothies a day. Essentially I have not been eating a lot of animal protein in the past two weeks so I’m thinking that maybe I need more. I’m going to play with this a little and see how things go. I am definitely going to add another smoothie a day so that I can try to get as many toxins moving as possible.

Alright, so let’s get caught up on yesterday and todays meals and snacks…

Monday mornings breakfast was a really delicious combination! Sweet Date Smoothie

  • 4 medjool dates, pitted
  • tsp cinnamon
  • 1 c almond milk
  • vanilla Clearvite
  • couple ice cubes

I loved this! It was so simple, not too sweet and deliciously smooth.

Lunch was especially beautiful and pretty tasty too!

This delightful looking plate included:

  • baby spinach and kale combo
  • strawberries
  • sprinkle balsamic vinegar
  • lentils mixed with celery, red wine vinegar, olive oil, salt, pepper and rosemary and tahini drizzle

I was running late in the morning so I was not able to pull together a decent snack. I grabbed some sunbutter to-go and then picked up a Larabar. I combined the two while at work. I promise there is a Larabar under there.

I have a little bone to pick. I’ve always been a fan of Larabars, but lately I have been very disappointed in them. Out of the last few I’ve had, I’ve only been happy with one. Do you eat Larabars? Have you noticed that sometimes you have a really great one, and then other times they don’t taste good or fresh at all? I also felt like this bar was shorter than normal. Are they short-changing us too? I’m sorry for my little rant, but their record with me has not been great lately.

Dinner was a kind of strange combination. It sounded good as I was getting it ready, but as I was eating it, it didn’t go as well as I had hoped. 

I had some leftover cod and then I baked a potato and topped it with sauerkraut and mustard.  The cod just didn’t taste good warned up again, and for some reason the sauerkraut  did not taste good to me either. When I combined the two on my fork, they tasted a lot better together. Go figure.

When I got home from work, I felt like having my “adult chocolate milk”. 

Amazing Grass GreenSuperfood and almond milk combo. I usually LOVE this, but shortly after I was not feeling good. It may have been my weird dinner rearing its ugly head. I actually woke up not feeling too great either.

Once I got breakfast in my stomach I was feeling much better. Today is the day I started with two Clearvite servings. First up was a delectable combination! 

Pumpkin Pie Smoothie Re-do

  • 1.5 c pumpkin puree
  • 3/4 c almond milk
  • fresh ginger, about an inch long piece, peeled
  • 1 medjool date, pitted
  • tsp cinnamon
  • fresh ground nutmeg, to taste
  • vanilla clearvite
  • sprinkle pumpkin pie spice on top!

Eventually I had to eat this with a spoon because it was so thick, it wouldn’t come out of the cup! I loved this version. I told Kyle, as I was sucking it down, that I felt like I was eating pumpkin pie filling. This was precisely what I was aiming for.

At work, I brought in a perfect snack, and also a repeat from the other day. I mixed up sunbutter with a little agave and cinnamon and brought a nice apple to dip with. 

It is very good, but business has really been picking up at work. This means crazy work-days. Again, this is good but it has been wearing me out!

I will tell you what didn’t wear me out, though!! I had “ice cream” for lunch today. I really wish that I could have added a topping like granola, but that is off-limits right now. Now that I am thinking about it, I wish I had added some shredded coconut and chopped nuts. What was I thinking? Oh well… there’s always tomorrow!

Choco-Cherry “Sorbet”

  • 1 c frozen cherries
  • serving Amazing Grass chocolate SuperGreens Food
  • Barlean’s strawberry banana flax oil
  • pinch ground cardamom
  • tbsp almond milk
  • 1/2 c water
  • vanilla Clearvite

And blend!!! Oooh this was so fun! Especially since I haven’t had anything like ice cream for a long time! Now I want to experiment making lots of ice creams… be on the look out.

After work, I was feeling very snacky. So on the docket was…

Welcome back cocoa-date nut balls!!!

And I picked these up today:

Gluten free ginger snaps. They are the best pre-made gluten free cookies I have tasted thus far. I had two of these as I was cooking dinner and two more after dinner.

I ran to our gym to do a little treadmill workout and then came back to snack on grapes and hit the showers. 

Dinner was very good! I made minestrone soup which I went off a recipe from Vegetarian Times magazine. No pasta, but it had sun-dried tomatoes. It was also super easy. I only wish that I had a nice crusty loaf of bread to dip in the soup. I did what I could with a rice cake with tahini and brewer’s yeast on top.

Now, I am lounging around on the couch with the dogs near and my husband to my left and watching House. I love this show and I love being home with my “kids” and husband!!!

Goodnight to you and I’ll see ya tomorrow!

Kaleigh

two day update

10 Apr

Man this week really has taken it out of me! I needed to take a night off from blogging because I was so completely exhausted!! I’m trying to figure this all out as I don’t know if the fatigue is from the food I’ve been eating (like eating out at the training I went to) not eating enough calories or protein, adding the muffins into my diet or if its just toxins being released.  Here are my eats for the past two days:

Saturday

This morning I felt like switching things up. I got this method from Ashley by taking cooked millet and putting it in a saucepan. I added almond milk and let them simmer together until almost all the liquid is absorbed. I also added some frozen cherries to the mix. It becomes kind of like rice pudding. 

I love how the almonds look! It’s like they are floating!

After it was done cooking I mixed in cinnamon, cardamom (I’m really favoring this spice lately!) and a smidge of agave nectar. On top I added coconut butter, raw buckwheat groats, chia seeds and almonds. This turned out really well. The only problem was that I didn’t leave a lot of time for myself to enjoy it. I had to rush to eat it and it actually burned my mouth a little. No good!

My snack at work was 1/2 a grapefruit and a few almonds and walnuts. I don’t quite understand why people always cut their grapefruits in half and scoop. It never really works. I like it so much more when you eat it all, like you would an orange. Otherwise you miss out on all the juice!!

I had to run an errand on my lunch break so in the morning before work, I pre-made my lunch. Chocolate Cherry Smoothie

  • Amazing Grass GreenSuperfood Chocolate
  • Vanilla Clearvite
  • 1/2 banana
  • Barlean’s Strawberry Banana Flax oil
  • 1/2 c frozen cherries
  • 1 c almond milk

I got my very important task done and I had a delicious lunch!

When I arrived home from work I was wanting a little something sweet. Good thing I didn’t have some cereal in the house, because otherwise I may have eaten a whole box! Instead I went with the grain (ha) and didn’t fight the crumbly muffins. I crumbled them up in a bowl, warmed them up in the microwave and topped them with coconut butter. I ate them with a spoon and I loved it!

I made sure to put a little extra work into dinner as I had a bunch of fresh ingredients on hand. I made kale chips, spaghetti squash HEAB style (minus the butter) and my own concoction, which I’ve now named Spanish Cod.

Spanish Cod

Ingredients:

  • about 2 lbs. cod
  • 2 tsp dijon mustard
  • tsp olive oil
  • 1/4 tsp cumin
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • handful cilantro, chopped
  • 12 raw almonds, chopped

Method:

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line a cookie sheet with aluminum foil. Mix dijon, olive oil, cumin and salt and pepper in a small bowl. Place cod on the cookie sheet. Use a basting brush to brush 3/4 of the dijon mixture on to the cod. Put the cod in the oven and cook for about 12 minutes.

Meanwhile chop almonds and cilantro to a fine dice. Pull cod back out and quickly brush remaining mustard mixture on the cod. Press almond/cilantro mixture on top of the cod. Place back in the oven and cook until fish is flaking, about 5-10 minutes. Turns out great!!

After dinner, I crumbled and warmed another muffin, but ate it with almond milk instead.

Sunday

This morning I wanted to go super easy. I did another Dreamy Creamy but added cocoa. 

  • 1 banana
  • 1.5 tbsp sunbutter
  • 1 c almond milk
  • A couple shakes cinnamon
  • tbsp cocoa powder
  • tsp Barlean’s Omega Swirl Pina Colada

I’m not sure if this breakfast just didn’t work well for me, but from about 11 am on, I felt really low energy all day. My snack at work was strawberries topped with coconut shreds and almonds. 

Again at lunch I wanted to do simple. Really throughout the whole day, I just wanted easy. And easy I did. A rice cake with sunbutter and jelly and the rest of my cauliflower soup.

When I got home from work, all energy had fled from my body. But I knew it was going to be a while till we were able to get dinner. I snacked on the other half of the grapefruit from yesterday and a date filled with nut butter. 

It kinda looks like a cookie sandwich. Ha! I wish!!

Kyle arrived home with the doggies in tow. We decided to go it easy and pick up dinner at Chipotle. I got myself a nice chicken burrito bowl with lots of guacamole, cause I do love it ever so much!We were all set to pop in a movie from Netflix, but the dvd we got wouldn’t load! So we watched a Matrix trilogy movie and a little Curb Your Enthusiasm too. My after-dinner snack included some herbal tea, actually Sugar Plum Spice to be exact, and some delicious blueberries.

Now I’m off to sleep, sleep, sleep!!

Kaleigh

the go-to’s

24 Feb

I wish that we had oodles of money.

I would love more money so that we could travel to awesome places we’ve never been (Italy, Hawaii, Greece, anywhere).

I would love to be able to make awesome donations and buy random people anonymous tuition to college or groceries (super philanthropists).

I would love it so that we could move in to a bigger place so the doggies could have more a yard to play in (a 10’x10′ patch would be an improvement).

But one of the biggest reasons I would love to have a little extra income would be so I could buy more food (INGREDIENTS!!).

I want to be a mad scientist in the kitchen, brewing up amazing concoctions and trying crazy new recipes. I want to have an endless supply of ingredients to do with whatever I wish.

Most of my time is spent dreaming about food. I could spend all day in a natural food store or a well-stocked grocery just looking around. Reading labels, discovering new food items, imagining what could be done with it all.

Unfortunately the Mr. and I don’t have extremely high paying jobs. We get by alright, but there’s definitely no way that every time I go to the grocery that I can pick up some truffles and jars upon jars of coconut butter. Instead, we have to get a little creative with our meals.

So what do we eat?

Well to start off, we usually are not home together for lunch or dinner. Most days we have opposite schedules so we fend for ourselves.

When I’m home alone I tend to make it really simple. My go-to meals include:

  • “Fried Rice”- I use up leftover rice by sauteing a bunch of veggies, adding the rice, soy sauce, asian flavored seasonings, and scrambling an egg all in one skillet. At the end I drizzle with sesame oil.
  • Pasta and veggie mix
  • Scrambled eggs with veggies
  • Baked potatoes topped with beans,  sauerkraut, or eggs
  • Hummus in tortillas or with crackers and veggies
  • Mix n’ match- basically I grab any random things that are hanging around and try to get a protein, veggie and some sort of carbohydrate

Kyle’s go-to meals are:

  • Peanut butter and jelly sandwiches
  • Pasta with red sauce or pesto
  • Turkey sandwiches
  • Tuna melts
  • Hummus wraps
  • He also usually eats up all the leftovers too, if there are any

On rare occasions when we get to be together, I try to make our meals a little more special. Things like:

  • Fish with some sort of vegetable side dish
  • Casseroles with vegetables like my cheesy broccoli and rice
  • Homemade burgers
  • Soups like chili and butternut squash along with sandwiches
  • New creations like salmon salad or trying new recipes I’ve found

I try to base our meals off of relatively cheap protein sources. Beans, lentils, canned tuna, etc are all really low priced for the amount of nutrition that they provide. But one or two times a week I will try to make more hearty and special things like with fish or something with chicken breasts.

So, what are your favorite go-to meals? Do you make a lot of quick meals or do you take time in the kitchen?

Ours are not super-impressive, but they are certainly easy, healthy and almost always delicious.

Kaleigh

something is a little fishy…

11 Feb

Besides Molly’s recent DIY apartment remodeling and the prices of bananas going up, there has been more fishy happenings going on around here.

The best of these happenings has got to be the Salmon Salad I made the other day.

Here’s my twist on the classic tuna salad:

Salmon Salad

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb. salmon
  • 1 T red wine vinegar
  • 2 T pickle relish
  • 1/2 tsp Old Bay Seasoning*
  • 3/4 c mayonnaise
  • Zest and juice of 1 large lemon
  • 2 celery stalks, finely chopped
  • 1/2 c chopped red onion (about 1/4 of a large onion)
  • 2 green onions, chopped
  • salt and pepper to taste

Method:

You’re going to learn how to poach fish! Don’t worry, it’s super easy 🙂

Pour 3 cups of water into a deep skillet and place the salmon in the skillet. Add more water to completely cover the fish if necessary. Place a lid on the skillet and cook over medium-low heat for 10 minutes. You should cook the salmon 10 minutes for every inch of thickness it is. After the fish is cooked, remove it from the skillet and refrigerate until cool.

Meanwhile, make the sauce!

In a large bowl combine red wine vinegar, relish, Old Bay seasoning,mayonnaise, and the zest and juice of the lemon. Whisk together until combined.

When salmon is cool, shred the meat into bite-sized pieces with a fork. Add shredded salmon to the bowl with the sauce. Add remaining ingredients and stir to combine.

*If you don’t have Old Bay Seasoning, which is a seafood seasoning, use instead a pinch of cayenne, a pinch of garlic salt, and a pinch of paprika. Or anything else you’d like!

**Refrigerate leftovers. And then add them to noodles to make a faux ‘tuna noodle casserole’!

In other fishy news, our cable/internet bill has gone up $40 since last month for no real apparent reason! What?! This is not going to work for us so we are getting rid of cable (Gasp!). Unheard of, I know, and we are considering changing providers for our internet services. So needless to say, posts may be few and far in between while we figure all this out.

And the most unhappy of ‘fishy things’ is that I am still not feeling well. I thought things were getting much better, but it all came to a crashing halt a couple days ago. Either I’m totally missing something with taking gluten/dairy out, the problem is not gluten and dairy, or it’s taking much longer for my body to get rid of the gluten than I thought. Did you know it could take up to 8 weeks for someone to flush out gluten? It’s crazy, but true enough. So I’m going to the doctor. I REALLY hate going to the doctor. I’ve gone several times for my ‘issues’ and they never really ‘listen’ to me. They hand me a pill and say, “Try this and we’ll check back in to see how it goes.”

It never works and I never go back in for the check-in. I really pray that this doesn’t happen again. I am frustrated beyond belief and if I just get a pill handed to me, I may explode.

I’ve been working really hard on my diet right now so I can only hope that this visit will be a productive visit.

What about you? Is there something fishy happening in your life?

Kaleigh


inspiration

28 Jan

Today felt different. Like the turning of a corner.

Maybe the difference was that I started my day with a Kath-inspired smoothie.

In my smoothie I had:

  • 1 banana
  • 1 c frozen berries
  • 1 scoop of Garden of Life Raw Meal
  • a sprinkle pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 c almond milk
  • topped with Pumpkorn (soo delicious)

 

I’ve seen Kath’s “smoothie in a bowl” and I never thought I would like crunchy, chewy things in my smoothie. I assumed WRONG!! I love it!

The “different” feeling could also have been that it was 67 degrees in the middle of January. In Colorado. Quite strange, but it felt “needed”.

I got to run outside. It was the perfect day for this! I haven’t done this in ages. This was special for two reasons.

1. I felt really good today. Mentally and physically. (This may not be the case later on as I have eaten a very large amount of banana bread mush. Turns out mush is just as good as fully-baked bread.)

2. I felt a soul-warming effect that the sun can only do in it’s own special way.

Truly though, this weather is going to be getting my enternal clock all messed up. Tomorrow is the start of spring, right?

Regardless, it’s awakening in me some really wonderful things.

The past couple weeks, as soon as I’ve roused from sleep, my mind immediately starts going over my to-do list. Compiling in mind what things I absolutely need to get done today. Instead, this morning I felt calm. I felt no rush. I got up and eased into the day. Every once in a while I felt the anxious feeling creeping in, but then I immediately dismissed it. I thoroughly enjoyed the day and for once, time felt like it slowed down.

Today inspired me to want to brake free from my winter cocoon and go plant some vegetables in a garden. I want to go fishing with Kyle. I’d like to go lay on a perfectly warm San Diego sunny beach.

I’m feeling inspired to try a bunch of new foods and concoct fun, new recipes. My cravings for food are changing too. I want greens again. Fresh flavors! Give me a big salad!!

And that is exactly what I did when I was done with my modest, yet wonderful 3.74 mile run (I mapped my run online ;)). I used the delightful inspiration from my run to make a sunny salad, complete with homemade dressing.

I felt like combining hot and cold in this salad so in the mix was:

  • green leaf lettuce
  • warm quinoa
  • lightly steamed broccoli and carrots
  • black beans
  • chopped raw onion
  • ginger salad dressing
  • salt and pepper

The dressing has been in the works for a while. I drew inspiration from the store-bought Annie’s Naturals Gingerly Vinaigrette.

Ginger Salad Dressing makes 1/2 c

Ingredients

  • 2 T apple cider vinegar
  • 1 T soy sauce
  • 2 tsp agave nectar
  • 2 T olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp ground ginger
  • 2 tsp dijon mustard
  • pinch of xanthan gum or cornstarch (optional, for a little thickness)
  • fresh ground pepper, to taste

Method:

Place all ingredients in s small bowl and whisk to combine. Adjust seasonings as needed.

The rest of the day has been spent working on a new recipe, eating banana mush and taking the dogs on a jaunt. I sensed that they were also inspired by the beautiful weather and wanted to get out in the fresh air as well.

This day has been truly apprecitated.

Now if only I could find inspiration to deal with all the dirty dishes…

Kaleigh

ready…set…NO!

19 Jan

As I was typing my last post, I had every intention of getting right up to wrastle with my to-do list. I had dreams of tackling a couple closets for the purge-o-mania, making a trip to the craft store, and getting in a long run.

Well… my body said NO.

Without any warning signs I was side-lined with tummy troubles and severe fatigue. The only thing I could figure happened was that I got a hold of one too many pieces of cheese or I got a stomach bug.

Regardless, I’ve missed 1 day of work and I’m still feeling a little “off” today. Monday evening, I was lucky enough to have my wonderful husband home by my side. I really was craving two things… and not much else… raw carrot-ginger juice and chicken noodle soup. With all the ingredients on hand for the soup at home, I figured I would just make some. In hind-sight, I must have been a little out of it thinking that I could do this because the whole evening I floated in and out of sleep. Kyle reminded me that I was sick and heroically set off to the grocery for the second time that day to buy said items.

Kyle brought home Amy’s No Chicken Noodle soup (ie vegetarian soy-ness), carrot juice, Tazo ginger juice, and some magazines for me. What a guy! He mixed a cocktail for me, (ie carrot and ginger juice) and it was absolutely delicious. The soup on the other hand was, well, weird tasting. I mostly slurped the juice and tried to eat around the tofu.

The next day, I was feeling significantly better but I still wanted soup.

Need Some Help Chicken Noodle Soup- gluten free

Ingredients:

2 medium-large chicken breasts

2 T olive oil

1 huge carrot, or 2 medium

2 celery stalks and their leaves

1 medium onion

4 sprigs fresh thyme

1 T chopped fresh sage

1 tsp cayenne pepper

Salt and pepper to taste

8 oz noodles of your choice, I used rice vermicelli

1 can of garbanzos, drained and rinsed (optional)

64 oz of water or broth

Method:

Place chicken breasts in a large soup pot and cover with about 3-4 cups of water.

Bring to a slow boil and cook until chicken is no longer pink. Be careful not to overcook. I did do this and the chicken was a little chewy :(.

Meanwhile chop the carrot, celery and onion into a medium dice.  

Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium high heat. Add the vegetables, herbs and spices.

Cook until just slightly browning and until the carrots are crisp-tender, about 5-7 minutes.  Set aside.

When chicken is done, pull it out of the water and set aside to cool. When it is cool enough to handle, pull apart into bite-sized pieces. 

Here is where you can deviate from what I did. Personally, I like when you are eating homemade chicken noodle soup and you can see the fat float to the top of the bowl, which means flavor. What I did was strain the water that I cooked the chicken in to remove any large, unwanted chunks.

I poured the water right back into the pot I cooked it in and added extra homemade turkey stock. All of this together equaled about 64 oz of liquid. Instead, you could use all store bought stock or water but the broth/stock will be much more flavorful.

Add the cooked veggies, chicken and garbanzos to the broth and heat over medium heat.

I found these babies leftover in our pantry so I decided to go with these rather than traditional wheat noodles. I also have another reason, which I will describe in a minute. I had half a package.

I broke them in small pieces and added them to the pot. This was certainly a messy affair. 

Let the noodles cook and all the flavors come together over medium heat for about 10 minutes.

Next up, it’s time to heal!

I must admit that I am slightly very confused about my current health situation. I pondered this as I was making my gluten free soup. I clearly know that I have a dairy intolerance. But what if I am still missing something? Generally most people who have gluten intolerances also have dairy sensitivities. I feel like every time I have done an elimination diet I have rushed adding back in gluten and I haven’t really determined if this bothers me or not. I have consciously been working on my diet lately, so despite my little cheese incidence, I have no reason to be feeling so poorly.

So here comes a really big decision: I am going gluten free. This explains the choice of rice noodles in my soup. This is kind of painful considering my new-found love for beer and I am also a bread freak. I can’t help it, that’s the way my momma raised me. But all that means is that I need to keep working on expanding my baking horizons. I plan to do this for at least 2 weeks. Then I can possibly start adding it back in and see how it goes.

My soup was wonderful, despite the over-cooked chicken. I really loved the rice noodles in it. They made the soup more full, if that makes any sense. I’m going to be drinking Traditional Medicinals Every Day Detox tea every day for a while to see if this helps too. Hopefully I am going to get back on track because I was feeling really great before this glitch and I’d really like to get back to exercising and I want to finish up this house purge! Look forward for some tips on going gluten-free and of course, recipes!

Another surprise that came without any warning? A snow storm!

I walked home one hour, not needing any extra jacket, and then after a two hour nap, it was blizzarding! Until next time, take care of yourself or you might get caught off-guard yourself!

Kaleigh

a few current obsessions…

16 Jan

obsess: to dominate or preoccupy the thoughts, feelings or desires of; beset, trouble or haunt persistently or abnormally.

My mind is going a mile a minute on all things things that I want to accomplish. I do have 17 goals for the New Year. I’ve got to get to work! Unfortunately I still feel that I have a lack of time and a wish list a mile long of things to do and things to learn.

But there have been a few specific things that are currently

dominating my desires,

preoccupying my thoughts,

besetting me persistently,

and haunting me abnormally.

 

Dominating my desires?

Flax meal and greens. Right now my body is CRAVING these two things. All day at work I dream of eating one or both of these. I just want to dip a spoon in our flax jar and eat it like nobody’s business. And just give me a pile of kale, and I’ll be perfectly satisfied.

Pasta with kale and garbanzos...:)

 

 

Preoccupying my thoughts?

Making our house smell wonderful. During the holidays I didn’t get to bake as much as I wanted to. With baking comes wonderful scents. I keep seeing “holiday” candles and oils that I would like to buy to create a warm atmosphere in our house. I’ve bought a few things but it turns out that home aromatherapy from the dollar store are not that great. So I took things in my own hands and decided to go completely natural and super easy!

Delicious and Powerful Home Aroma

Place one large sliced orange into a sauce pan. You could also use clementine or mandarin orange peels. Add 1.5 T of whole cloves.

Cover with about two inches of water.

Place on your stove and bring to a simmer over medium low heat.

Keep it on a low boil as long as you want to your house to smell amazing! Add water as needed.

 

Besetting me persistently?

The Unseen Bean coffee. Master roaster Gerry Leary gets his beans from all over the world and personally roasts the beans to order. I feel like this is the best coffee I have EVER had, and this makes complete sense. Gerry has been blind from birth so instead of relying on sight, he relies on smell and sound to determine the beans’ readiness. My favorite is their Ethiopian. I keep telling myself that I need to take a day off from coffee, just to give my body a caffeine break. I definitely notice it makes me parched through out the whole day unless I consciously gulp tons of water. This is because caffeine is a natural diuretic. This isn’t ideal with the way I have been working out, but with all that being said, I can’t resist.

The nectar of the gods!

Kyle keeps waking up earlier than me and every time he has been brewing. The warmth and soul-soothing feeling coffee has in the morning just can’t be beat. And it would be a crying shame to waste this magnificent coffee!

 

Haunting me abnormally?

The purge.

I have made a serious dent. I have revamped our refrigerator, dvd organization, under our bathroom sink, a couple of  cabinets in the kitchen, partially in my crafting area and half of our pantry. BUT I have a few areas yet still to tackle. I want it done! It’s so close and I can already feel a huge weight lifted off my back.  It will be amazing to have it completed. Until that time, I have been completely consumed with planning my next move, deciding what I need for optimal organization and what else I can rid ourselves of.

I’ve added a few before and after pictures here for two reasons.

1. To show off my organizations skills, of course.

2. To re-motivate myself on how far I’ve come. I’m losing a little bit of steam so I think if I share my progress, my fire will be lit again.

Fridge Before

After

I've used up 3/4 of the hoarded jars!

Ok.

Ready…

Set….

GO!!

Kaleigh