This is a super food that I want to recognize and recommend loudly!!!! It is a nutritional powerhouse!
- Packed full of natural vitamin A, C, & K.
- Contains more iron than beef; also high in fiber
- Strengthens immune system & helps fight viruses
- Helps with weight loss; detoxifies
- Can help prevent cancer such as colon, ovarian & prostate
- Can help lower cholesterol levels
- High in calcium
You can use kale in salads, soups, smoothies, juicing, sandwiches, side dishes....
I usually buy a large bag at Costco, put half fresh in the fridge, and freeze the other half in ziploc bags. Frozen kale is perfect to use in fruit smoothies
. Have trouble keeping it fresh? Put 1 paper towel square in the bag with it and it will help keep it fresh longer....the science behind that? I have no idea, I just know that it works! I use this for spinach also.....
Still not sure about kale? Do some research. Look up the health benefits of kale and find out for yourself!
I am all for fun home remedies that actually work! This one was given to me from my coworker and I love it! I make it once a week and apply it in the shower.
1 teaspoon organic ground coffee
1 teaspoon sugar
1 teaspoon organic virgin coconut oil
Mix sugar and coffee w/ coconut oil to make a thick, grainy paste. Gently rub/massage it onto skin and face.
Rinse off w/warm water, ending with a splash of cold (to shrink pores). Pat skin dry. Tone & moisturize after.
**Tub will be slippery due to the coconut oil; wash shower out right away so coffee doesn't stain it.
I did a little research on the health effects of coffee on the skin:
- Reduces inflammation
- Helps get rid of under-eye circles or darkness
- Helps get rid of cellulite
- Tones & smoothes skin
And of course coconut oil:
- Prevents premature aging
- Repairs damaged tissue
- Natural moisturizer
- Helps treat skin problems
- Proven antiseptic & antimicrobial
- Delays, prevents wrinkles
And that is just a few....... !!!!!!!
Just thought I would post a couple quick healthy breakfast tips that I have been thinking about lately! A few ideas to help steer clear of sugary cereals, donuts, muffins, etc. You know what I'm talking about! For some reason, breakfast is the hardest meal for me to eat healthy. I don't like mornings, I don't have a lot of time, and I want to "grab and go." SO.....here's what I have been eating lately in the AM and it has been giving me an extra energy boost throughout the day:
- Organic old fashioned oats w/ unsweetened coconut milk, agave or maple syrup, bananas, & a sprinkle of ground cinnamon. (Picture posted above) or organic instant oatmeal w/ fresh blueberries & sliced bananas.
- Low-fat Greek yogurt or cultured coconut milk (now available at Trader Joe's!) with 1 teaspoon of chia seeds, unsweetened coconut, & a sliced banana. Sometimes I will throw in sliced raw almonds.
- Smoothie w/ frozen fruit, too ripe banana, chia seeds, unsweetened coconut milk, orange juice, & a handful of fresh baby spinach OR kale. (You can't even taste the spinach!)
- Organic or farm fresh eggs scrambled w/ onion & bell pepper w/ sliced avocado on the side.
- Blueberry muffins w/ coconut milk instead of regular, coconut oil or applesauce instead of vegetable oil, and honey instead of granulated sugar.
- On extra busy days: Lara Bar (Fred Meyer has the best selection and flavors and are often on sale 10/$10) and a fresh orange, banana or apple.
- Start your day with a glass of water. Did you know you are supposed to drink 1/2 your body weight in ounces of water each day???
- Coconut milk is your friend!!!! I hardly ever drink regular milk anymore and I feel so much better. Your body will thank you!
- I should be the Trader Joe's Pin up girl. :)
Sometimes silence is much louder than the words we speak out loud. I can hear resentment, bitterness, anger, and confusion so loudly in a room where issues are festering I feel like my heart will burst. I don't understand why the thick cloud can't be broken with words....words saying what is already in the air...words getting out what is being thought and getting it over with. I don't understand why it can't be brought out in the open and dealt with. I don't understand why the fact that healing will come after isn't taken into consideration. Instead it just hovers over the room like a poison slowly soaking in. I hate it. It makes me angry. It makes me feel sick to my stomach.
It is in my past. With my blood relatives. With old friends who aren't truly friends. My past that often times tries to sneak into the present and bring me down, even make me feel inadequate as a human being. But I must remember I have overcome this disease myself, although I am frequently caught in the midst of it taking root in others. I refuse to let it sink into my heart. I will not let it win.
I am free. Freedom is my choice. It is life to my soul. My freedom cannot be taken away from others. I will wear it forever. If anyone tries to come in and take it, I will shut them down. There is no room in my life for negative people who don't have my back. I fight not only for myself, but for my future children, for my family. I will not let the past dictate my life, my future, or my happiness. I have grown thick skin that has weathered numerous storms, chaos, confusion, anger, lies, manipulation, control.....I have conquered the ugliness and come forth stronger, wiser, more beautiful, determined, and unwavering. I am free.
I had the chance at lunch today to enjoy some wonderful sunshine (rare at this time of year in rainy Washington). It cheered up my spirits and refreshed my soul. I love a good moment to myself, and inspired by the warm sun I began writing, writing...writing. I wrote until the scrap paper I found in my purse could hold no more words. I did not think about what I was writing or try to make sense of it. This is what came from my heart today:
Freedom doesn't come without a price. There's no way around it, you have to go through fire. The end result isn't as precious when you haven't given up everything to obtain it or haven't fought until you have nothing left. It means losing people closest to you or fighting to keep them alive. It's always the moment when you are about to give up when breakthrough comes most unexpectedly. The main thing is to not give in or give up, but to stay strong until the bitter end and victory will come.
The truth will always come out if you hold on for it.
Evil people will not always succeed, morning will always break even the darkest of nights, and justice will prevail. Take heart and continue on.
As I was driving to work this morning I had an inspiration for this post. A challenge for all you ladies out there. I was thinking about how much gossip and needless talk goes on everyday out of my own mouth and others around me, so here's a challenge for you to work on this month:
Don't say anything that tears down, hurts, discourages, makes fun of, or is something that would make you feel bad if you knew a person or friend was saying it about you. (Even if it's true, be the bigger person and leave it alone.)
Well that's hard enough work right there, but take it a step further. If someone tries to say something to you that falls in the category listed above; gather your courage and stop it. Just refuse to enter in or start worthless talk. Don't even listen to it. We as women have big mouths, and it isn't pleasing to God or anyone else. It can be a slow poison that makes us incredibly ugly on the inside and the outside. I once heard someone say that you know it's gossip if one person's words change your opinion of who they are talking about. My own husband challenges me in this area all the time. Just last week, I brought up a topic that wasn't necessary to talk about, and he said to me: "Gabbi, that sounds like gossip." I immediately shut my mouth and changed the subject. I knew deep down that's exactly what it was: ugly gossip.
"Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear. "
"A dishonest man spreads strife, and a whisperer separates close friends." Proverbs 16:28
"If anyone thinks he is religious and does not bridle his tongue but deceives his heart, this person's religion is worthless." James 1:26
"I tell you, on the day of judgment people will give account for every careless word they speak."
"To speak evil of no one, to avoid quarreling, to be gentle, and to show perfect courtesy toward all people." Titus 3:2
I'm not going to lie. My pride took a pretty hard hit this weekend. I guess that's just God's way of making sure I don't turn into a total brat???? I'm not really sure. Nonetheless, last night I wasn't sure I could pick myself up again. A bit of background in case you don't know me.... I play softball with my husband. Our season starts in the spring and we play through the fall when the weather starts turning gross. This is my second year playing and I absolutely love it. I play outfield, usually left or left center, and take pride in the fact that I can catch, run, and hit without looking like a stupid girl. :) I take pride in the fact I can keep up with boys in sports (and sometimes beat them) and they are usually impressed. Well, we had two games last night, and I did in fact look like a stupid girl. I don't know what was wrong with me, I was definitely having an "off" night. The only time I got on base was when I got walked. I dropped 3 balls in the outfield, which hardly ever happens. When I got up to bat, the other team was chanting, "she's a looker, not a hitter. She won't ever hit the ball." I probably would have started a fight if my husband wasn't there to calm me down. I was ready to fight that dumb girl on the other team saying those mean things. ( I get a little intense when I play sports - just ask my team. I made a guy on MY OWN TEAM quit after I yelled at him for dropping a ball. I am not proud of that; I did apologize to him though.) So after our first game, I thought to myself, "well, I can redeem myself and regain my dignity during our second game." That didn't happen. I played worse than my 1st game. I walked home in shame that night. I tried to find something that I could be mad at my husband Patrick about, but I knew deep down I was really just mad and irritated with myself, which made me even more mad! I barely said two words all night to him. Am I dramatic? Absolutely. But when I put my heart into something, I put my WHOLE heart into it, so it hits me twice as hard when things don't go my way, or I fail at something.
Well, things always look better in the morning after a good strong cup of coffee, I have come to learn. It's best if I just go to bed and sleep it off. I can laugh about it now, but it felt so real to me at the moment. I felt like I never wanted to play again, that I should just give up and quit. I know someone out there understands my rantings and what I'm talking about. I hope I'm not the only one with crazy emotional swings. Maybe it will give someone a good laugh, who knows? I just need to vent and get it out. This Wednesday during playoffs I plan to gain composure of myself, keep my attitude in the right place, and play hard and do well. And if I don't? Really? A girl can only take so much! I am going to OWN THAT FIELD!
I am so excited about this new recipe I came up with last weekend, I have to share it now!!! ( I forgot to take a picture, so when I make it again, I will post it to my side dish page. With football season now here, your going to want this for parties!!!)
I originally wanted to make jalapeno poppers for a barbeque last weekend, but was starting to feel stressed trying to figure out the timing on when to cook them so they would still be warm when we got there, PLUS trying to get myself ready......and so my venture turned into a dip! An amazing, yummy, creamy dip. Here you go, you are going to love it!!!!
Jalapeno Popper Party Dip
2 8 ounce packages cream cheese
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1/2 cup sour cream
6-8 fresh jalapenos, diced, seeds left in
1/2 cup finely shredded Mexican cheese mix
2 additional tablespoons cheese (for sprinkling)
1/2 tablespoon plain breadcrumbs
1 box Ritz crackers, to serve with
Using a Kitchen aid (really helpful), or by hand, combine cream cheese, mayonnaise, & sour cream, mixing well until smooth. Stir in jalapenos and cheese, combining well. Pour into serving bowl and sprinkle breadcrumbs and 2 tablespoons cheese over top. Serve right away or cover and refrigerate until ready. Serve with Ritz crackers. Enjoy!!!
Last night I had a hard time falling asleep because my mind was racing about a million different things. Yesterday I felt a new determination rising in me regarding several different subjects, mostly relating to our household and budget. I keep thinking of Proverbs 31 which says:
"A wife of noble character who can find? She is worth far more than rubies. Her husband has full confidence in her and lacks nothing of value. She brings him good, not harm, all the days of her life. She selects wool and flax and works with eager hands.She is like the merchant ships, bringing her food from afar. She gets up while it is still night; she provides food for her family and portions for her female servants. She considers a field and buys it; out of her earnings she plants a vineyard. She sets about her work vigorously; her arms are strong for her tasks.
She sees that her trading is profitable, and her lamp does not go out at night. In her hand she holds the distaff and grasps the spindle with her fingers. She opens her arms to the poor and extends her hands to the needy. When it snows, she has no fear for her household; for all of them are clothed in scarlet. She makes coverings for her bed; she is clothed in fine linen and purple. Her husband is respected at the city gate, where he takes his seat among the elders of the land. She makes linen garments and sells them, and supplies the merchants with sashes.
She is clothed with strength and dignity; she can laugh at the days to come. She speaks with wisdom, and faithful instruction is on her tongue. She watches over the affairs of her household and does not eat the bread of idleness.
Her children arise and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praises her: “Many women do noble things, but you surpass them all.” Charm is deceptive, and beauty is fleeting; but a woman who fears the LORD is to be praised. Honor her for all that her hands have done, and let her works bring her praise at the city gate."
Ladies, we have work to do!!! I am so challenged by this verse and encouraged to change. I do not want to be an ineffective, unproductive wife who sits around eating potato chips and watching soaps when I could be changing our life. The verses that particularly stuck out to me this week were:
We are called to be our husband's helper. The main thing that stood out to me is that while we as women are not called to be the providers of our families, the Proverbs 31 woman still did things on the side to bring in additional income. She was productive. She made clothes and sold them, traded profitably, and she planted a damn vineyard for goodness sake! I am exhausted after weeding our small patio for 45 minutes!!! And I don't even have kids yet. Pretty sure this lady did. "Her children arise and call her blessed; her husband also, and her praises her."This verse should be posted on everyone of our fridges. I believe that even a few small things everyday will help. Make lists and finish them! That has been very helpful for me. Here is a look at my sticky notes from earlier this week:
- "She considers a field and buys it; out of her earnings she plants a vineyard."
- "She makes linen garments and sells them."
- "She watches over the affairs of her household and does not eat the bread of idleness."
I am almost finished completing this list. It may not look like much, but let me tell you, I moved mountains this week by doing little things like sorting that mail that has been growing like weeds, paying bills, cooking a good dinner for my hunney, and putting one foot forward and trying to make a difference in my family. There is no greater feeling than when my husband walks through the door after a hard day at work and says." The house looks great, thank you so much for cleaning today." I love being praised by my husband after really working hard at something for the benefit of our marriage and life together. No, he won't always notice. But God does! And I usually point it out if he doesn't say something anyways. :) Get to work ladies!!!gabrielle abby
- Clean Fridge
- Sort Mail / Organize bills & paperwork into a file system
- Clean out purse
- Look at budget / rework
- Write out meal plan for next 2 weeks
- Post wedding dress on Craigslist
- Sell tires in garage??? Ask Patrick
- Fold Laundry / clean house
- Work out (yes, this is honoring your husband :)
- Organize laundry room closet
This morning at work, I thought about how much I love being married. Of course it has ups and downs, as does everything in this life, but would I ever go back? Absolutely not! For one thing, we are bound in a covenant relationship and can't get out anyways. :)
The word divorce is not in our vocabulary, as it is not an option. It doesn't matter what life throws at us, we will go through it together. As I write this, I am tearing up a bit because I love my husband so much. No, he is not a perfect man. But I am not a perfect woman. There is no such thing! Some days I am raging mad at him, and other days I can't believe how lucky I am to have him. Typical.
I'll never forget when we were on our honeymoon in Maui. We decided to go on a hiking day trip about 2 hours from where our hotel was. Like always, I was all excited and ready to go until a few unplanned things came our way.
A little background before I tell the story: I am the most impatient person in the world, and my husband is the most patient person in the world. If that won't start a good fight, I don't know what will.
Anyways, we started out. I was happy and taking pictures of all the gorgeous scenery on the way. Part of the way was rolling hills as green as Ireland with farms and animals roaming freely around. And then out of nowhere, the scenery changed to barren wasteland as if an extreme fire had wiped it all out. In the back of my mind I was thinking, "How can there possibly be a beautiful national park in all this mess?" Not to mention the road changed to a bumpy rocky nightmare and we couldn't drive more than 15 mph. I tried my best to be positive, but after an hour of driving without seeing any promising landmarks or signs, I finally spurted out, "I think we should turn around! We must have taken a wrong turn." My always patient husband responded, "No, lets keep going, the map says this is the right way." I immediately responded by crossing my arms and having a silent temper tantrum, while looking out the window to avoid eye contact with my husband. Classic girl move and so, so dumb. We sat there in silence while I was fuming because my husband refused to give in to my bratty attitude and turn the car around. Can I just say real quick, WHAT A MAN!!!!!! In the moment I am always angry with my husband when I don't get my way, but what a man to stand his ground. So glad my husband has a damn spine.
So eventually we came across a small shop high in the hills. The lady at the counter said that yes there was in fact a national forest close by, and to keep going! We got back in the car, and after driving 20 minutes, out of nowhere, the scenery changed from brown to lush green. Absolutely breathtaking. I have never seen anything like it. Water so blue you could almost see straight throught it, tropical flowers growing everywhere, and warm sunlight shimmering through the trees. Boy did I feel stupid. I apologized to my husband, and we had the best day hiking together, and will remember it forever.
I need him, and he needs me. Our completely different personalities and ways of thinking compliment each other. When I am having an emotional "down" he is there to comfort me and steer my emotions back in the right direction. When he is struggling, I am his fierce prayer warrior, helping him where I can. It can hurt to be so open with someone, but it also brings healing like nothing else.
Life is such a gift. The ups and downs, the trials, the joys, and everything it brings!
Here is a picture from the hike we took. Worth the crazy drive!