Friday, September 24, 2010

Thankful for new moments

So many things I'm thankful for.
I choose to focus on them;
health, family, love, beauty, connection, understanding.
I will fail, focusing on negative,
But I can always start again
because each moment is brand new
Mostly, I am thankful for that!

see more at makingthingsup.com

Friday, September 17, 2010

Listening

Currently in love with Cat Stephen's 
Voice singing so sweetly and gently,
Singing, "I listen to the wind, 
To the wind of my soul."
...and "Where I'll end up well
I think only God really knows."
I can relate to Cat Stephens.
This song speaks to me so
Because I feel the same way
Only I don't often enough listen
In my world of utter busy.
I feel tugging at my soul
Sssshhhhhh, God lies within us all
And that voice is accessible whenever
We are still and we trust.
I, for one, need much practice 
in being still and in trusting.
In the grand scheme of things
Value and success look different, deeper.
We can live out our purpose
Trusting enough to shine and shine
We need only to listen close
And trust that God-voice inside.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

gluten free chewy granola bars


I love to create things in the kitchen. I google recipes to find something that looks like it will work, then I modify it to a version that suits my standards and works with my family's food sensitivities. I buy in bulk  and try to make what I can (and what I have time for) from scratch because 1.) I loathe all the packaged food that is marketed to our children. It is unnecessary trash and has too many additives. 2.) we are on a pretty fixed income and all that packaging costs extra $$ 3.) food made from scratch is so much healthier and wholesome and you know exactly what goes into it and 4.) Creating healthy food that also tastes delicious feeds my soul in some weird way.


I found this wonderful chewy granola bar recipe online a few months ago, suited it to be dairy and gluten free and thought I would share.

You'll need....

5c c. regular rolled oats (we use the gluten free oats for our gf household)
2-3 c. nuts and/or seeds of your choice
1 c. brown sugar
1 c. honey
8 T. coconut butter or Earth's balance dairy free butter or real butter
4 t. salt
4 T. vanilla
2 c. dried fruit (ANYTHING, coconut, mango, dried ginger, apples
raisins, cranberries, choc. chips, etc.)

1. Place dry ingredients (oats, seeds, nuts) in pan and toast for 10 minutes, then throw in a bowl.


2. While oats are toasting, mix the rest of the ingredients in sauce pan and melt together until hot.

3. Place toasted oats and nuts/seeds and dried fruit into large bowl, pour in the melted ingredients and mix well.

4. Line baking pan (9x13) with parchment paper
and pour granola mixture onto parchment paper and spread flat


6. line top with parchment paper and press the granola into the pan

7. let cool

8. when cool, remove from parchment paper and cut into bar shapes

9. use same parchment paper to cut and individually wrap bars

10. throw in a tupperware, or ziplock and store


11. enjoy for snacks, in kids lunches, etc. for the week. so easy and fast to make and so nutritious and inexpensive to eat.

Feel free to play around with sweeteners. These bars were delicious but a little too sweet for me.
Let me know if you come up with a fun variation!




My Wish For You

-By Reverend Shiloh Sophia McCloud-

May you choose outrageous actions that challenge who you are
And encourage who you are becoming
May you take one step, however small, towards that which
You have always longed for, now is the right time
May you recognize the unique and powerful contribution
That you bring to the people whose lives you touch
May you be as grand and wonderful as you really are
And do things because you want to, not just because you should
May you celebrate your creativity
And find peace and purpose amidst the chaos and suffering
May you reach towards the spirit with a longing that keeps you present
To all the miracles available all around you, all the time
May your faith move any mountains that stand in your way
And may your heart be awake and open
May wisdom be your guide
And may love be at the center of all your choices

-couldn't have said it better myself-
-Blessed be-

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Morphing



He's morphing before my very eyes.
His tween years have already begun.
He bends his head down as
I go in to kiss good bye.
Too big to kiss mama on lips.
Yet he'll still embrace a hug,
And even stroll arm in arm.
Capable of reading to him self
Yet is nourished by mama's voice.
He gracefully plays our old piano
Giving names to made up songs
Replaying by ear certain pop music.
He's learning much of the world
But is still so very innocent.
Between worlds of wonder and ego.
His heart is big for suffering
And he genuinely wants to help.
He relentlessly teases his baby brother
And also protects him from harm.
He argues with me over things,
Things like helmets and bed times.
He rolls eyes and slams doors
Still comes to mama for comfort
On days when life feels hard.
Through each new phase of his
I hope that will carry through.


More

I often have this nagging sense that I'm not doing enough, that I should be doing more, more spending time with my kids, more trying to make extra money, more crafting, more budgeting, more cooking, more singing, more yoga, more exercise, more charity, more time to be still. I know I'm not alone here. As mothers we really take on so much. I get overwhelmed and anxious thinking of all the "shoulds" and "mores" and end up feeling resigned to it all. I am aware that I am doing this to myself, yet I haven't changed the behavior. I won't even go into the self loathing that follows.

My brain is full and the rumble of anxiety starts to seep into my gut. I work 30 hours a week and take a night class. I am the primary parent for my 2 boys, and I'm organizing a book club and a charity event. I blog and hope to learn more about photography and freelance writing. I feel like I should be able to do it all, I want to do it all and at the same time I'm afraid I'm not doing it well enough, which unfortunately sometimes stops me from even trying. I get anxious about delivering the quality I expect from a "good mother," "good wife," "good friend," "good writer," or "good organizer." How can I do it all and still do it well? Things like starting up and working at a local health food co-op, planning charity events, and raising awareness line up with my ideals and are also my way to help make the world a better place. They can also consume me, make me question my ability and bring about anxiety. I sometimes wonder if there are too many pots on the stove, or perhaps I'm just not good at time management. Maybe I'm taking on so much as a way to prove my worth, but if that is not coming from within, it will never be enough.

I read about mother deficit disorder yesterday and perhaps this is what I'm experiencing. Although in my case it is not isolated to motherhood. Maybe it's confidence deficit disorder. Or acceptance deficit disorder. Or self-discipline deficit disorder. I spend too much time focusing on my deficits, both here on my blog and in real life. Oh no!....positivity deficit disorder, one of the worst kinds! HELLLLP!

Thing is I know what to do. I start building healthy habits one at a time and I tell myself I am worth it. I stop trying to do it all, but I do my best in the areas I commit to show up. I forgive myself for my mistakes and my shortcomings and try to hold compassion for others, in hopes that, God bless'em, they do the same for me. I try to take time to nourish myself. At the very least I stop focusing on my deficits, no matter how hard it might be for me to say something good about myself. Have you ever tried giving yourself a compliment in the mirror? Talk about feeling like a dork, but I hear it works.

What are some things you do to overcome your deficits, or at least overcome focusing on them?!

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Kale chip tutorial for my fellow crunchies

I have an abundance of kale and if you have a garden or get a csa, chances are you might too. 
Or maybe you just like kale or are trying to get more green into your diet.
I love preserving it in the form of chips.
Give it a whirl!



Rinse kale and tear into smaller pieces, place in large bowl and set aside.

For the paste, you'll mix approximately 
2 tomatoes
1 red bell pepper
3-4 TBSP of miso paste to taste (I use South River chickpea miso, soy free, but any miso will work-
you can even substitute the miso with tamari/soy sauce or salt)
3 cups raw nuts. I used pine nuts, but raw cashews and/or sunflower seeds will do.
1/4 c. nutritional yeast
1/2 lemon

throw ingredients in a food processor or blender,
starting with the veggies and adding the rest.

blend until smooth. and make sure you like the taste.
note: the paste will get more flavorful and salty as it dries, so don't make it too salty.

poor paste over kale pieces, you may need to do this in batches
depending on how much kale you have.

mix with hands until the kale is evenly coated, 
you won't want too much or too little.

lay out on dehydrator tray
if you don't have a dehydrator, 
line a cookie sheet with parchment paper and lay flat on that.

this is my dehydrator. I heart it and use it mucho. 
Good investment.

I set my dehydrator to 105 or below so the chips are still technically raw
 and none of the enzymes are destroyed.
If you put them in the oven, set it as low.
They will take roughly 24 hours.
Dry until crisp and dry.

take off sheets and store.

Yum. My kids call them pizza chips.
The paste dries to taste like cheese. Seriously.
Enjoy!

Friday, September 3, 2010

Transformation. Six Word Friday.

Each moment; an opportunity for transformation
Sometimes we choose it for ourselves
Sometimes it is chosen for us
Whatever the avenue for our transformation 
May we choose it with love.