A love letter to my kid

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My prettygirl, my hunnybunny.My wonderpup. I love how you are always so eager to get up in the mornings, so excited that you always skip a couple of steps as you run downstairs as fast as you can. I love … Continue reading

Grey morning smoothie brightness

Grey clouds hanging low, rain falling outside, I needed something that tasted bright to counter the grey outside. Enter today’s smoothie!

2 cups milk of choice (unsweetened almond milk for me)
1 cup water
2 big handfuls of spinach
1 scoop Amazing Grass Green superfood
1 scoop hemp protein powder
1/2 tbsp honey
1 tsp ginger
1/2 tsp apple pie spice
1/2 cup frozen mango
3/4 cup frozen pineapple

Loved this one!!

Apple oatmeal smoothie

I’m out of avocados (horror!) and out of unsweetened cocoa powder, but I still wanted to make a pudding. So, new recipe needed!

But what started out to be a pudding ended up more like a cross between a smoothie and a milkshake, thick and creamy, and it is so good, it has become my new breakfast addiction.

Throw into the blender (don’t actually throw, it could get messy):
2 cups milk of choice (I used unsweetened almond milk)
1 tsp vanilla
1 tsp apple pie spice
3 1/2 dates, pitted
1/4 c uncooked oatmeal
1/4 c almond meal
2 tbsp unsweetened coconut shreds
6-7 ice cubes if desired (I haven’t made it with ice, I like this one not ice cold)

*note, this is not a typo, I didn’t include any apples, just apple pie spice.*

Blend till smooth and not lumpy.

I seriously love this one – fat from the almond meal and coconut shreds, protein, fiber from the oatmeal – keeps you full for a good while! Plus, it is majorly yummy!

A little bit stronger

I have never considered myself particularly strong, physically. I’ve never considered myself particularly athletic. But lately, that’s changing.

I was the kid always picked last in gym class. When we played volleyball, I would always step away from the ball coming at me, instead of hitting it. Or if I did hit it, it usually either went straight up or into the net, because my goal was just to keep it away from my face. When we had to play softball in gym, my solution was to go as far outfield as possible and feverishly hope a ball never came my way. If a ball did come my way, my attempts to throw the ball were beyond pathetic. Athletic, me? No way. Strong? Definitely not.

I’ve been running off and on for years and years, and still never considered myself athletic. I used to run to the beach and then go swim for a mile and run home, but I still didn’t feel athletic. Athletes were the popular kids in gym class, they were on teams, I just went running and swimming. I wasn’t a runner or a swimmer. But you know what? I got to the 20-mile run in a marathon training program before I had to walk away from the marathon. I am a runner. I am athletic.

I started rock climbing with Husband, and while I felt stronger, I still didn’t feel strong. But you better believe it takes major strength to rock climb.

I always wanted to be really toned – toned arms and shoulders, toned legs, flat belly. But at the time, I wanted it more for physical appearance than for strength.

But once I started yoga, I realized how much strength you need to do and hold poses. It doesn’t matter what you look like – if you aren’t strong, you will know it. When I started, I did not feel strong.

I kept going to class, and gradually, I started to be able to hold poses longer. I started to actually be able to focus on my breathing in the poses, and not feeling like my whole body was pleading with me to stop. Some poses that were a big struggle to me at first, now I can get through holding the pose for as long as they hold it.

My yoga instructor gave me the greatest compliment the other day, that I am getting so much stronger and she can see it in the poses I do. It felt like such a major victory. Yes, I am getting stronger. Yes, I am strong now.

The toned arms and shoulders that came from developing that strength were now a nice by-product, not the goal. Finding and developing my own strength was the real goal.

Quiet joy

Joy doesn’t have to exuberant. Joy can be found in the quiet moments, when your heart just fills up and in those moments, everything seems perfect.

Some quiet moments of joy today:

  • Waking up today, sunlight just starting to glow in the backyard, washing dishes in the quiet before Husband got up, sipping on coffee, just enjoying the stillness
  • Sitting at the kitchen table after hot yoga, feeling mentally clear and energized from class, drinking a second cup of coffee (something I only do on weekends), enjoying my oatmeal, and reading.
  • Eating lunch outside with Husband today, feeling the warm spring air, enjoying the breeze on my skin and the vibrancy of my salad, loving living in the south, and happy to be sitting outside with Husband, talking about the future.
  • Husband and I sitting outside this evening on our patio, listening to country rock, the puppy happy to be outside, grinning big and bringing us balls and toys to throw, me dancing around in a whirling dervish as the twilight settled in, feeling so much love for Husband and so happy to just be sitting with him
  • And one from last night, drinking fruity drinks of happiness at Bahama Breeze, me dancing around our table to the steel drum music, in the open air patio, with perfect cool evening breezes

I hope you’ve found some quiet moments of joy in your life recently!

Pineapple mint refresher

It’s late afternoon and it is my first chance to sit down and relax for most of the day. Woke up this morning to go to a special hot yoga class, an amazing, powerful, tough class that takes everything you can give, and then lets you wind down at the end. Perfection.

After coming home a Sweaty (Happy) Beast, I changed and Husband and I went out for some much-needed clothes shopping. We both hate clothes shopping, but we were both in need of some wardrobe updates. When we reached our shopping wall (one and a half stores), we grabbed lunch and enjoyed the perfect spring day out on the restaurant patio.

By the time we got home, I was feeling depleted.

Time for Pineapple Mint Refresher!
Into the blender went:
2 cups 100% pineapple juice
4-5 mint leaves
~1 1/2 cups of ice
1 tbsp coconut cream
1 scoop Amazing Grass Green Superfood.

So yummy. So refreshing. Just what I needed.

Now to curl up with my blanket and watch Before Sunrise (I’ve never seen it – yay Netflix Streaming for letting me watch movies so easily!)


Food photography

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I was the event photographer for our Administrative Assistant’s luncheon today at work. I couldn’t eat any of the food, but I was able to enjoy it in my own way!

Hello, Newman

If you know Seinfeld, you know Newman was Jerry’s nemesis, and how Jerry always greeted him with suspicion and dislike.

That would be me today. My nemesis? My skin issues. I had a few spoonfuls of Purely Decadent (gluten-free) cookie dough ice cream last night, ice cream I’ve had before so I didn’t check the label. I thought all of the Purely Decadent line were made with coconut milk, which is fine for me. But Newman, my sneaky nemesis, is trickier than I gave him credit for.

I woke up this morning and could feel skin flare-ups just starting on my face, and my energy felt lower than normal. I went to hot yoga, and ended up getting really overheated towards the end. (Yes, it’s hot yoga, yes, you are supposed to be hot, but this was more of an unwell hot).

I came home, and checked the ice cream from last night (and thinking I would add a bit to my oatmeal this morning). But there was NEWMAN! The ice cream was made with soy milk.

My energy feels depleted, my stomach isn’t quite happy with me, and my face is feeling itchy and warm and uncomfortable. Well played, Newman, well played. You might have won this round, but you have not won the war.

So, what’s a girl to do who is in the middle of a reaction? Pump in good healing stuff to help my body recover.

Good medicine pineapple smoothie
2 1/2 cups 100% pineapple juice
1 cup water
3 probiotic capsules
3 spirulina capsules
1 scoop Amazing Grass Green Superfood
2 handfuls spinach
1 chard leaf
~1 cup frozen mango chunks
~1 cup frozen peach slices

Blend, blend, blend, and then enjoy a tropical medicine concoction that will have you feeling better in no time, mun.

Unusual flower gardens

Inspired by some of these gardens, a link that I found via Kelly Rae Roberts.

The queen of hearts rules the night