Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Laughing Out Loud

Laughter is the best medicine!!

This morning, I woke up, had the breakfast of champions and was checking my inbox. I found an email from Amazon advertising some books on Kindle. So I checked them out and actually checked the inside of one of them: Happier Than A Billionaire: Quitting My Job, Moving to Costa Rica, and Living the Zero Hour Work Week.

As I read the first couple of pages, I was laughing so hard that I disrupted my house. The children kept asking "what's so funny?" So I bought the book. I figured a book that made me laugh before the day began was worth the price of just $2.99.

I will let you know later if it is actually any good. :)

Have you laughed today??


Sunday, February 26, 2012

The Rules of Homescholing

Playing is the best way to learn!
Are you thinking of homeschooling? or maybe you just began homeschooling? Or maybe you are a seasoned homeschooler who is stressing yourself will all the do's and don'ts.

Well, you might want to read THIS ARTICLE. It is a really good article about all the rules that ARE NOT!!

Enjoy and be encouraged. Anyone can homeschool their children. All one need is commitment to their children.


Friday, February 24, 2012

Breakfast of Champions

I shared HERE how I lost weight and what I am doing.

Today I want to share with you, two of my favorite breakfast options. Now, remember this is a vegetarian breakfast. There are no eggs, or meat, but there is a little cheat. ;)

Green Smoothie

2 cups of frozen fruit (any type you like. Here I used peach, pineapples and strawberries)
1 ripe banana
2 handfuls of baby spinach
1 tablespoon of milled flaxseed

Blend everything together until smooth. No sugar or sweetener was used. There is really no need for it if your banana is really ripe. 

Steel Cut Oats with fruit and yogurt

I soak my steel cut oats in water and 2 T of whey from my homemade yogurt for 24 hours outside the refrigerator. I read that soaking the oats make them more digestible and you are able to absorb the minerals and vitamins from it much better. After 24 hours I rinse the oats and cook them in water. Because they have soaked they cook much faster, in about 10-20 minutes depending how soft you like them.

I cook a batch and keep in the fridge. In the morning I scoop a portion into a bowl and heat it up in the microwave. I add slices of one ripe banana, a handful of frozen blueberries and (here is my cheat!) a dollop of my homemade yogurt with no sugar or sweetener added.

Yumm-O!! Enjoy!!!

What does your breakfast of champions look like?


Tuesday, February 21, 2012

My Aha moment.

I have been hearing things... whispered inside of my heart... coming from the pages of a book... from the mouth of my Lord Jesus... from the innocence of my children... from the green stuff I have been drowned under these past few days... from my hormones... they are changing my heart, my mind and my way of thinking... they are leading me to repentance. That is what this word means: a change of mind.

I just heard another whisper: "the goodness of God leads us to repentance." Yes, the goodness of God. I get overwhelmed sometimes... I wish it was everyday and every moment... If I could just stop long enough to pay attention. I get overwhelmed by His goodness. Oh, my Lord, how sweet you are!!!

The most important thing you have is not a thing, it's a PERSON.


Friday, February 17, 2012

Do you want to lose weight ?

Disclaimer: I am not a doctor or a nutritionist. This post has informational content only and it describes my personal experience. Please consult your physician when deciding to diet and exercise.

Roasted vegetables with dried herbs and olive oil.

 I am down to 218 pounds!! It's been over 10 years since I have seen this number.

If you remember, I wrote HERE how I lost 20 pounds. That was last year in January. You can go to that link to find out how I did it.

Well life went on and my new lifestyle went by the way side, but NOT completely! Although I was NOT eating vegetarian most of the time, I still kept doing a few things that in the long run helped continue to shed pounds although more slowly and not as painfully.

This is what we did as a family:

1) we no longer drink sweet tea with dinner. I serve water to everybody. Occasionally the adults will have a soda on the weekends, and the children will have sweet tea.

2) The children no longer drink juice with their breakfast. I fix them fruit smoothies with my homemade yogurt and I add flaxseed oil and honey. Or we will eat fresh fruit and drink water.

3) I kept active. No, I don't go to the gym and I don't have a strict exercise routine. I just seek out exercise and stay moving. For example, we bought a new house in June and we have now 4 plus acres to mow. Well, I decided to learn how and each day would pick a patch and work at it for an hour or more. By the time I was done mowing all the patches, it was time to start again. :) But I had such a great time and I burned a lot of calories and shed a few pounds. Another thing I am doing is reading my emails and browsing blogs standing up instead of sitting down. Those are just a few ideas of how a SAHM can move more without joining a gym. What are some of the things you could do?

4) Began taking a supplement and still do everyday. Most people are deficient in B vitamins and minerals. If you drink sodas you definitely need a mineral supplement because the sodas rob you of calcium and potassium. I take Life's Fortune and I really like. It gives me energy throughout the day.

5) I have a bowel movement everyday. If you don't have one, begin by drinking more water, not juice or coffee, just plain water. Then begin eating more fruits and vegetables. I love prunes. Eat 2 a day to get you regulated or try drinking 1/2  cup of prune juice first thing in the morning. Just Google Bowel Movement if you need to understand why it is so important, or watch Hoarding: Buried Alive to see why you need to get rid of trash everyday.

So that is what I was doing when January 10th came along and then we began a fast in our church. The fast only lasted 10 days and we called it a Daniel Fast. A Daniel fast is Bible based and it consists of fruits and vegetables only.

Savory apple salad with balsamic vinegar.

My DH and I decided to join in and after 10 days we had lost weight, felt lighter and so good. So I was doing some research and found EAT to Live. After reading about it, searching for reviews and blogs I figured that it was similar to what we did last year but with more restrictions. So again, I proposed to my DH that we do the lifestyle again for 5 days a week and eat whatever we want on the weekends.

It's been a month since we began, my DH has lost 20 pounds and his blood sugar is now normal. I lost almost 15 pounds and I am feeling soooooooo good.

Next post I will share how our lifestyle is different from Eat to Live regiment. And what a daily menu actually looks like. Are you interested???


Monday, February 6, 2012

Unschooling defined.

I read this ARTICLE and it said it all.

If you are a homeschooler or unschooler wondering about college... maybe self doubting the education you are giving your child or maybe wondering about the future.... I think the ARTICLE will help you.

It helped me. :)



Thursday, February 2, 2012

Perfect Homemade Yogurt every time.

The consistency of still warm yogurt.
Recently I began making my own yogurt at home. Why eat yogurt? Because it has live cultures that are beneficial for your digestive system. Did you know that your immune system begins in your gut? So it's a good idea to keep it working properly. If you have heartburn, constipation, diarrhea - these are all good reasons to eat yogurt.

Unlike milk, yogurt is easier to digest and much healthier. Although my American DH grew up drinking milk with his meals, I made a point to NOT encourage this habit in my children. They will drink milk with the occasional cookie, but most of the time they will get their calcium from dark greens, cheese and yogurt.

So I researched for a while and found an easy method that works for me. Unlike this recipe that requires a crock pot or this ONE that requires a cooler, I used this ONE that uses the oven and its light as the base of my recipe.

Here is what I do:

1) I use 2% milk (I wish I had raw milk but unfortunately where I live it's illegal for human consumption! Right! whatever...) and then I "boil" (not really... I heat it up until I see bubbles forming around the top) in a stainless steel pot.

2) I use 1 T of greek yogurt to every 2 cups of milk.

3) Once the milk "boiled" I let it cool until I can put my finger in it and it feels like the same temperature of my daily hot shower. Yes, that is right! I don't have a candy thermometer. I use my finger. :) Now if you want to be precise you can use this post to monitor temperatures and follow the rest of my recipe exactly.

4) Once the temperature is right I add the tablespoons of yogurt that are room temperature mixed in with a few tablespoons of room temperature milk. Yes, room temperature is key here!

5) Mix in the yogurt (your starter) slowly, gently. Then I cover with the pot's lid and add a few thicker dishtowels on top and put in the oven with the light on and forget about it until the next morning when I come in to make breakfast.

That's it!!! easy peasy... no washing, rinsing or boiling or any of the other complicated stuff the other recipes call for.

I put in the fridge so it can cool and it will firm up a bit.

My homemade yogurt and my starter of choice.

I usually make about 8 cups at a time and use 4 T of starter. Once you have your own yogurt you can use it as your starter. No need to buy from the store any more.

I add this fabulous yogurt to my children's smoothies (I don't use milk for smoothies. Yogurt or water plus the fruit), homemade sauces and gravies, pasta sauces, icing for cakes and cookies, salsas and more.

Next post I will show you how to make cream cheese and use the whey from your own homemade yogurt.

If you enjoyed this post, leave me a comment, will you??


PS Here is another great post about yogurt and how-tos and even troubleshooting. Enjoy!