31 January 2010

Day Thirty One

WOOHOO!! We've made it a month! What have you noticed? Do you have more energy? Does your skin look younger? Are you overall less bloated, less fatigued? Are you able to focus and concentrate better? I want to hear the changes you've experienced by adding green smoothies into your diet. Today's smoothie is not my favorite, but its not bad. Its very thick and very satisfying. I'm not sure I'll be able to drink a whole pint at a time. Here we go:
  • 1 avocado *
  • 3 mango spears (pre cut, bought at Costco)
  • 1 lb bag frozen pineapple
  • 2 bananas
  • 2 clementine oranges, peeled
  • 3 cups water
  • 3-4 basil leaves
  • boatload of spinach
  • ICE

*yes, a whole avocado. yes, its a lot of fat. yes, its a good fat. yes, it will help you ~lose~ fat.

30 January 2010

Day Thirty

Oh Green Smoothie, take me AWAY!!!!! Its a rainy, muddy mess here in the Pacific Northwest. Living here for over six years now you'd think I'd be used to it. But sometimes it still takes me by surprise. This morning the dogs were outside wrestling around in the mud, which they always do and I went about my morning and making my green smoothie. I realized I needed some ingredients that were out in the (detached) garage. I opened up the side door and the dogs immediately attacked me. Within 1.7 seconds I was covered in mud. Did I mention I'd already showered? In an attempt to get away from their "affection" I tried to run back into the house. But the dogs are faster than I am. And they ran straight through the door, pushing me to the side. Muddy paw prints are the new decor of my kitchen floor. It took three of us (myself, hubby and oldest son) to get the wet, soppy muddy dogs into their crates and I went about making the green smoothies, heading back out to the garage in peace. I got said smoothies made, and poured and handed out to all of the members of our family. I went to put the leftover smoothie into the fridge and yesterday's smoothie decided it had had enough and wanted to end it all. The (glass) pitcher jumped of the shelf, taking down a brand new bag of spinach with it, and another (glass) pitcher of extra smoothie. So, on top of the muddy paw prints there was now a beautiful swirl of green and deep purple, littered with spinach leaves on top. Oh, and the pitcher smacked into my shin on the way down. Thankfully neither of the pitchers broke and the mess was somewhat contained to right in front of the fridge. Its cleaned up now and I think, after I finish this smoothie in front of me, I may go take another shower. Oh, did I mention we're having company this afternoon? Fun times.

Ok, into the vita-mix:
  • 1 cameo apple, chopped
  • 2 bananas
  • OJ
  • frozen pineapple (ingredient that prompted the canine attack)
  • kale
  • spinach
  • ICE
Its been brought up that Kale has a fairly strong flavor and I was asked how I'm able to mask it in my smoothies. I only use 3-4 leaves per smoothie and lots of spinach. I also like to pair it with fairly strong flavored fruit, such as pineapple & banana. I hope this helps! Keep the questions and comments comin'! I love getting feedback from you guys!

29 January 2010

Day Twenty Nine

My husband is training for a marathon and was heading out the door this morning for a 14 mile run (yes, I do believe he's insane! Actually, I envy him). He wanted a little bit of smoothie before his run, so I whipped this up for him before he took off. I have to admit, its pretty yummy : )
  • 2 cups water
  • ~ 1/3 lb frozen blackberries
  • 1 granny smith apple cored and chopped
  • 1 banana
  • 4 kale leaves
  • 3 big handfuls spinach
  • juice of one lemon (~ 1/4 cup)
  • small piece of lemon rind
  • squirt of agave
  • ICE!!


28 January 2010

Day Twenty Eight

After drinking so much smoothie so late last night I acutally slept very well and woke up not very hungry. I had a handful of nuts in the morning and that held me over until around noon when I made my smoothie. I don't do "diets" and I refuse to let myself go hungry because I'm counting points, calories, fat, carbs or anything else. I just wasn't hungry this morning. Nor was I craving anything. But after I worked out I knew I'd need something soon so I decided to fire up the vita-mix.

  • 2 c water
  • 1 granny smith apple
  • 1 10oz bag of frozen dark sweet cherries
  • 1 banana
  • squirt of agave
  • 3 kale leaves
  • spinach
  • flax oil
  • ICE

I love cherries. This smoothie is not too sweet, but not too bland either. I think it might be one of my favorites. I'll put it under my "faves" as Cherry Apple. Enjoy!

27 January 2010

Day Twenty seven

Phew, better late than never, eh? At 8:45 tonight I still hadn't had one drop of smoothie. And I could tell. It was just a busy day and I wasn't really hungry for most of it, so I just never got around to making one. But my energy levels were in the dumps. Anyway, I made the smoothie and drank the entire quart at one time. I feel like I could float away.....
  • couple handfuls of red grapes
  • a few frozen pineapple chunks (to get them out of the freezer)
  • a bunch of frozen mixed berries
  • collard greens
  • spinach
  • banana
  • agave
  • water
  • a few basil leaves (wow, a little goes a loooooonngg way)

And there you have it. Enough for one pint for my husband and one quart for me.

26 January 2010

Day Twenty six

Have you ever bought a bunch of lettuce with the thought of eating salads everyday? Have you ever opened your refrigerator five days later just to see the lettuce still sitting in the bag, now partially wilted and no longer salad worthy?

Every week I tear up a few heads of lettuce, wash them well and spin them dry. I keep these instant salads in a large rubbermaid container in the fridge. And while I do eat a lot of salad, some weeks I just don't get to all of it before it loses its crispness or starts to oxidize on me (you know, that weird brown color you see in the veins of the lettuce? Oxidation, baby). So, you have this handful of lettuce that's not really appetizing for a salad, but its not exaclty bad yet either. What do you do with it? Care to guess where I'm going with this?

That's right! You throw it in a blender! If there is too much for a single smoothie, place it in a ziploc bag and throw it in the freezer. Trust me, your blender doesn't care if your greens are fresh from the ground or partially wilty and frozen. So, today's smoothie:

  • 2 large handfuls of spinach
  • 2 large handfuls of mixed lettuce (leaf lettuce & romaine)
  • squirt of flax oil
  • lots of frozen mixed fruit (a mixture of peaches, strawberries, pineapple & red grapes)
  • about 4 cups of water
  • 2 bananas

I won't lie, the lettuce has a much greener taste than the spinach. But I'm really enjoying it. Its refreshing & not sickenly sweet. However, if you are new to smoothies in general, you may want to start slow when adding new greens.

25 January 2010

I'm being featured!!!

Oh Wow! Oh Wow! OhWowOhWowOhWow!!! There have been several people & blogs out there that inspire me daily on my green quest for better health. I've mentioned The Green Smoothie Girl, I've given away a book by Victoria Boutenko, but there's one inspiration that I look to daily. I haven't mentioned them here before, but their blog is so fun, so refreshing and so full of good, practical advice. The GreenSmoothieQueen (powered by The Raw Divas) is probably one of my favorite blogs. Ever. And I read a lot of blogs. Alot. And I got an email one day. And they wanted me to write something about my challenge. And they put it on their blog. I know, right! Get out of town! How cool is that??? So, head over and read my intro. Oh, and I'm going to sending in monthly updates. Because it really is a green smoothie revolution. We're taking over baby. I have a blender and I'm not afraid to use it!

Day Twenty five

I made myself (and the kids, who drank nearly all of it) a smoothie yesterday evening. I had a little left, so this morning I just drank that. I'll be making my neon pink smoothie this afternoon, at the request of a friend. : )
  • a cup of OJ
  • 2 handfuls of spinach
  • a banana
  • 1 wedge pineapple (and some juice from the container)

That's it. Easy peasy. I should mention that my children (even the one that hates smoothies) drank this whole thing. I had to make another one. And they drank half of that one, too. I should also note that I've been buying precut pineapple from Costco. Because I'm lazy. Not in the cans ~ that stuff's not raw. The stuff in the refrigerated section.

24 January 2010

Day Twenty four

I've been doing a lot of reading and researching lately looking for our ideal nutrition plan. I know the "right" fats are good and I also know I'm not getting enough of those. So today I set out to put some into my smoothie. Coconut oil is a controversial oil to say the least, but I do believe it can be part of a healthy, whole foods diet. So, here we go:

  • 1 1/2 cup water
  • 2 bananas
  • 2-4 fresh mango spears
  • 2 fresh pineapple spears
  • a little pineapple juice
  • 2 handfuls spinach
  • 1 handful collard greens
  • 3 lime leaves
  • 1 T coconut oil melted in 1 cup of warm water*

Let 'er rip. I have to admit, today's smoothie was not my favorite. I could taste and feel the coconut oil. But I drank and feel better knowing I've got some good fats in me today.

*coconut oil is solid at room temp and melts at 76 degrees. In order to not have hunks of solid fat in my smoothie I melted it in warm water first.

***Edited to Add: after this smoothie chilled out in the fridge for a while, it really wasn't as offensive as I first thought.***

23 January 2010

We have a WINNER!!!


Comment #4 was our winner. Congratulations to Deanna! She answered:
deanna said...
Hey, my name is Deanna and I found you through Eclipsed a couple of weeks ago. I have had a few green smoothies thanks to you and starting today am making it a daily habit (M-F). I do feel I have more energy when I drink them and I hope they will help me lose some weight. Thanks for the inspirations (I still haven't tried the peanut butter one but plan on it soon)
Deanna, your email addy was not attached to your comment, so I need you to contact me (either on the FB page or by my personal email: mauk.jessica @ gmail.com ~remove spaces) and send me your mailing address! Congrats!!

Day Twenty Three

Wow. Yesterday I had a total emotional breakdown. I had super weird cravings all day and I just felt 'off'. Its not hormonal, so I turned to look at my nutrition. Yesterday's smoothie was very good, but it was very heavy and not as raw as I normally like (especially since I didn't soak the walnuts). Thursday night for dinner I had made myself some Morning Star Broccoli Cheddar Bites. They were good, but now I'm wondering what kind of preservatives may have been used and if I was having a reaction to some weird ingredient. I haven't had much processed food lately. Either way, I knew this morning I needed a raw, wholesome nutrient packed smoothie. So, into my vita-mix:
  • Basic Smoothie Starter with pear
  • one over ripe banana
  • about two cups of frozen pineapple chuncks
  • three handfuls of spinach
  • one handful of collard greens
  • a splash of OJ (not raw, but I was out of oranges)
  • ICE

Its very yummy and I expect will help kick out whatever toxins took hold of my brain yesterday. Now what to do with that pan of brownies I made.............

22 January 2010

Day Twenty Two

Green smoothies, when made with nutritious wholesome fresh fruits and vegetables (whole foods, not juices) have an enourmous amount of fiber in them, but still I wanted to up the ante a little today. Blueberry buckle anyone?
  • Juice of one lemon (approx 1/4 cup)
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 lb of fresh blueberries
  • 1/4 c raw walnuts (I did not soak them, as I just decided to use them this morning)
  • 1/4 rolled oats
  • handful of collard greens
  • couple handfuls of spinach
  • ICE

21 January 2010

Day Twenty One

I should learn to keep my mouth shut. My husband was happily drinking today's smoothie, even exclaiming how great it was. "I really like this one" he called out while playing Wii with the boys. And then I told him what was in it. My big mistake. For the last two hours he's been complaining that he has a "rice milk after taste" stuck in his mouth. Hhmmm, I think he's worse than the kids ; )
Ok, into the vita-mix today:
  • 2 c rice milke
  • 2 bananas
  • 4 handfuls spinach
  • 2 big handfuls frozen strawberries
  • a squirt of agave
  • a few fresh strawberries (rinsed, with stems in tact)

Blend it all up and off ya go! Enjoy!

20 January 2010

Day Twenty

Today has been a busy day so far. I made the smoothie this morning, but am just sitting down long enough to post what I made. Its days like today that I'm grateful for the extra energy that I get from these smoothies. Into the vita-mix:
  • 2 c water
  • 1 pear cored & cut up
  • 2 big handfuls of green grapes
  • 1 handful collard greens
  • 2 handfuls spinach
  • 1 banana
  • squirt of agave
  • ICE

I found a bag of collard greens cut up and ready to blend at the store, so I thought I'd try them out. I couldn't taste a difference in the smoothie at all. YUM!

19 January 2010

Day Nineteen

I mentioned yesterday that I'm having "rough couple of days". Ya know, from a female standpoint. And today I wanted needed comfort food. Is it odd that this is now my comfort food? That's right. Today I made another peanut butter milkshake. I swear, its my new "go to" smoothie when I'm feeling I need a little indulgence.

18 January 2010

Its a Party Now!!


We now have 100 fans on our facebook page! That's enough for one kickin' party! So lets celebrate! I just happen to have an extra copy of Green Smoothie Revolution sitting here on my desk. I'd like to give it to one of you. Its by Victoria Boutenko of The Raw Family. Mrs. Boutenko is the pioneer of green smoothies. She, her husband & their two children were victims of various "western" diseases and one day she decided she'd had enough. She went home and threw out all of their processed, cooked, junky food and went totally raw. Just like that. In one day. With teenagers. And they never looked back. She's my hero. She's penned several books and they are all fantastic reads. I highly recommend you cruise around on their website for a bit and pick up some of her books the next time you are at your local library. You won't be disappointed.
Ok, now on to the fun stuff. How can this extra copy of Green Smoothie Revolution become yours? Simple, leave a message on this here blog post. Leave me a comment and tell me
  1. How did you find this blog?
  2. Have you tried a green smoothie yet? (its ok to say no, I won't hold it against you) :)

For doing that, you get one entry. If you tell a friend about this giveaway and they visit here and leave a comment (telling me they heard about this from you) you will recieve an extra entry. So, your comment might look something like this:

"Hi, my name is Suzie Smoothie and I stumbled upon your blog one night while cruising around on Facebook. I've tried every smoothie you've posted and you have now become my idol. I have a whole wall of my kitchen dedicated to you. Its like a shrine."

Easy peasy? Got it? Great! Now, let's get this party started!! **Edited to add, this giveaway will stay open until Friday evening. At which time I'll announce the winner. Good Luck!**

Day Eighteen

Each month there are a few days where I feel particularly sluggish. This is usually due to, ahem, a drop in my iron levels. Are you following me? Ok, good. I used to make sure I had plenty of beef on the menu during those weeks, but since I'm cutting out a lot of animal based foods, I decided to go for plant based iron this month. Iron from plants is not as readily absorbed by our bodies as iron from meat sources. However, this does not mean this iron is inferior. I happen to believe that any nutrient that we can get from plant based foods is far superior than that same nutrient from animal based foods.
In order to make the iron from plant based foods easier to absorb by our bodies a little food combining is necessary. Vitamin C is what's needed to get this ball movin'. I woke up feeling uber sluggish, our dog got out of the yard and we had to chase him down (only to come home an hour later to find him sitting in our driveway) and my day has otherwise just not started well. I made this iron rich smoothie and I have so far today done the dishes, decluttered and wiped down the counters, folded and put away one load of laundry, started another load and made some healthy cupcakes for the kids. All of this was before noon. I'd say the iron smoothie was just what I needed to beat my monthly blahs! Here we go:
  • 1 c OJ
  • 1 tsp powdered wheat grass (I don't have a wheat grass plant yet)
  • 2 big handfuls of spinach
  • 1 handful frozen pineapple
  • 1 handful frozen mango
  • 2 bananas
  • 1 cup water
  • 3 whole dates, pitted

DELISH!! Also, we reached 100 fans on facebook in just EIGHTEEN DAYS!!! WooHoo! Stick around for a fun giveaway!

17 January 2010

Day Seventeen

Today I ran errands with a friend and we stopped at Arby's for lunch. I had a fully cooked, overly processed, high in meat lunch. Let me tell you, its 6:45 pm and my body feels like its past midnight. I should NOT be this tired. I'm fully aware that it has to do with my midday meal. I had some of yesterday's smoothie for breakfast and I just made a new one for my dinner. I'm already starting to feel better and I'll drink the rest of it after I put the boys to bed.

Today's recipe:
  • 1 cup OJ
  • 1 banana
  • handful of over ripe fresh strawberries (stems & all)
  • 2 big handfuls of spinach
  • handful of frozen strawberries (you know, for the "frozen factor)

Blended it all up and off we went. YUMMY!

16 January 2010

Frequently Asked Questions

I've received a few questions and I wanted to address them here. As I get more, I'll come back and edit this post. Here we go (its really not that exciting)

Q: What do you eat the rest of the day?
A: I came up with the idea for this blog on Thanksgiving Day 2009. I spent the next month fine tuning some ideas in my brain, and wondering where this blog might take me. I knew this question would be asked eventually and I knew I had no easy answer for it. I have food issues. Bigger issues than I describe in a little Q & A post. I'll get into them another time, but for now suffice it to say that I'm gradually adopting new, healthier habits into my life. Until just recently I ate a Standard American Diet (SAD). However, after reading The China Studay and doing a little of my own research, I'm gravitating more towards a whole foods, plant based diet with minimal animal based foods. I try to eat a good portion of my foods raw, but I'm not 100%. I'm probabaly not even 50% (yet). I hope this answers this question. At least a little bit. For now.

Q: Do you plan your smoothies out in advance?
A: Not usually. I often have some ideas tinkering around in my head that I want to try, but I usually just wait and see what strikes my fancy (or what's waiting in my fridge) when I go fire up the blender.

Q: Why don't you just drink a V8?
A: I'm asked this question quite often, actually. The reason is simple. V8 (or any other juice) is pasturized when bottled. Meaning its heated above 118* for a period of time to kill any bacteria and to make it shelf stable. Anytime food is heated above 118* the live enzymes in that food die off. Enzymes are used by our bodies to aid in digestion and to help break down the foods we eat. Our body only has the ability to produce a finite amount of enzymes. When we eat foods that are not rich in enzymes, our bodies has to take our enzymes away from various organs to use them for digestion. I have a bottle of live enzyme tablets that I keep in the kitchen. Often when I get sluggish or tired in the mid afternoon its after a fairly heavy, mostly cooked meal or snack. I pop a few enzymes and the bloating and sluggishness literally vanish in a very short time. This is also why I try to drink my second smoothie not too long before dinner. It helps fill me up and puts lots of live enzymes in my tummy before I sit down to eat my meal.

Q: Have you had to buy more toilet paper since starting your smoothies?
A: Ok, this one was asked in jest (I think), but it does bring up a good point. If you have lived your life consuming the SAD (a fair amount of animal protein, lots of processed convenience foods and lots of refined white flour and white sugar) and you suddenly start consuming mostly raw green smoothies everyday, yes you may notice a change in your elimination habits. A lot of Americans have a build up of plaque and other disgusting stuff that I won't get into lining the walls of their intestines and colon's. Green smoothies can, over time, break down that plaque and pull those impurities out of your system. Though sometimes uncomfortable to talk about, this is a good thing.

Q: Couldn't you just eat a salad?
A: Well, I guess. I do eat salads often. Several times a week and I'm working up to at least one large salad daily. However, I can only chew on so many greens a day before I get bored. Having one large salad per day gives me almost my daily recommendation of vegetables for the day. I add about 5-6 salads worth of greens to my smoothies everyday. I don't know about you, but I have no desire to eat, with a fork, that many salads in one day.

Q: How much to these smoothies cost? Those are some pricey ingredients.
A: Admittedly, my grocery bill went up a slight bit when we first started green smoothies. But that was because I was buying the ingredients in addition to everything else I normally bought. However, since making the smoothies a habit and changing some of my other habits I'm now able to cross some things off of my list that I no longer buy. For instance, we no longer buy soda. This is a HUGE savings off of our weekly grocery bill. I've started to cut way back on the amount of meat we buy and that's another savings. In the end is all evens out and I expect eventually my grocery bill will go down because of these changes.

I think that is is for now! Let me know if you have any more questions, or if these sparked any new ones. I'm having so much fun with this challenge and I'm just tickled that so many of you are following along with me! Thank you, from the bottom of my heart. ~Jessica

Day Sixteen

Today's smoothie was one of those "I have an idea in my head, the smoothie didn't even come close to what I thought so let's add some more random ingredients" kind of smoothies. And I have to say it ultimately did come close to what I had in mind. Whadda know?
I was going for a "Cherry Limeade" kind of thing, but I didn't have enough frozen cherries. So I substituted some frozen strawberries and I think it came out beautiful. Actually, it didn't because it came out kind of a murky muddy green, but the flavor is beautiful. Afterall, its not looks that matter, its what's in the inside right? Well that's what I tell myself. Please don't burst my bubble. Ok, into the vita-mix:
  • some green grapes (its what was leftover from my son's snack. I'd say maybe 7 or 8 of them)
  • handful of frozen cherries
  • handful of frozen strawberries
  • 2 keylimes, peeled + a small piece of peel for extra flavor with no added pulp.
  • 2 handfuls of spinach
  • squirt of flax
  • 1 cup of rice milk
  • 1 cup of orange juice
  • 2 whole dates, pitted
  • ICE

I love it. Again, my kids have given it a thumbs down. I think they've gotten into the habit of taking a taste and immediately telling me they don't like it. I don't get it. My older son used to say how much he loved smoothies, telling me he couldn't get enough of them, etc. I dont' know what changed. But I'm determined to find out.

15 January 2010

Day Fifteen

Orange Julius anyone? Today's smoothie reminds me of the siren call of those yummy, creamcicle like "smoothies" at the mall. My son plays in a chess club that meets at the food court of our local mall every Monday evening. And they sit at tables between the Orange Julius and a candy store. Its like they are trying to torture me. I usually take a smoothie with me and just sip on it while reading a book or hanging out with the other chess club moms. We're a wild bunch. Don't let the pocket protector's fool you ; )
Ok, into the vita-mix:
  • 1 1/2 cups of Rice Milk
  • a tsp (ish) vanilla extract
  • one banana
  • two clementine oranges (peeled)
  • couple handfuls of spinach
  • ICE

Lots and Lots of ice. Why? Because I wanted it to be thick and milkshake like. To hide the pulp from the oranges. I'm a wimp. I do not do pulp. You may notice over the next few days that my smoothies are getting smaller. I am not finking out on my quart a day challenge, but my husband is a commerical airline pilot so when he's working, I do not make as big of a smoothie. To be honest, today's was much bigger than I intended. It'll be a snack later. And it may be dinner. And possibly breakfast tomorrow. Would you like some of my smoothie?

14 January 2010

Day Fourteen

Two weeks!! WOW!! My husband and I both drank some leftover smoothie this morning, so I have no recipe to share. However, I will probably make a small one later this evening and I'll be sure to post that one. Happy Two Week Anniversary!!! WOOHOO!!

13 January 2010

Day Thirteen

Wow, its been almost two weeks already! How are you guys feeling? For today's smoothie I kept it simple, but I also made a small batch. I'll have to make some more this afternoon, and it just so happens that I've been craving one of my peanut butter milkshake smoothies. Yea, I'm sneaky like that. Ok, into the vita-mix today:
  • 1 kiwi with skin (ends trimmed)
  • handful of frozen pineapple
  • 4 big handfuls of spinach
  • 1 small handful of cilantro
  • 2 cups of water
  • ICE

The cilantro? It totally made this smoothie. I was awesome! But a little goes a loooooooong way. I'm just sayin'. Oh yea, and its got loads of health benefits, also. Enjoy!

Some of the questions I've been getting for my Q & A post: What do you eat the rest of the day? Do you plan your smoothies out in advance? Why don't you just drink a V8? Has your inventory in toilet paper gone up? Couldn't you just eat a salad? And many more! Don't forget to get your questions in! The Q & A post will be published this weekend!

12 January 2010

Day Twelve

Today was a rummage around in the freezer, fruit medley kind of day. Boy, will I be glad when summer rolls around again and I can visit our local farmer's market. Is it wrong that I'm salivating, not over the fresh fruits & veggies that I can get, but over the leaves that are attached to said produce? I am lucky in that I've got a fantastic local grocery store that caters to produce snobs like myself. Today's smoothie recipe is as follows:
  • handful of frozen mango chunks (whatever was left in the bag, about a cup)
  • big handful of frozen tart cherries
  • two big handfuls of frozen granny smith apple slices
  • 3 fresh dates, pitted
  • 1 cup organic OJ
  • 3 cups water (I needed more liquid to move all of that frozen stuff through the blades)
  • 4 big handfuls of spinach
  • flax oil

Let 'er rip! I actually blended it all up before adding the spinach and gave some to my children that way. They told me it was too sweet and wanted me to add some greens. I can't win with those two.

Later today I plan to make myself some soup with my vita-mix. My goal is to keep the temperature under 118* so all of my yummy ingredients stay raw and packed full of healthy enzymes. Would you like me to share other recipes I try out in my vita-mix or are you here only for the smoothies?

11 January 2010

Day Eleven


My kids are addicted to juice. As a new mother, that didn't know any better, I got them started on juice habit way too early. In an attempt to repent for my prior mistakes, I've switched them from apple juice to V8 V-Fusion. Its not a perfect solution, but its better than the other alternatives. They love this stuff and it does have a decent amount vitamins and minerals, so I don't feel overly guilty about it. Probably the most frequently question I'm asked is "why don't you just drink a V8?" This question, along with any others you may have will be answered in an upcoming Q & A post. I've been collecting your questions and now's the time to ask any more that you may have! They don't even have to be about smoothies! Anything you want to know!
Ok, back to business. I have one son who will eat his weight in fresh fruit and cherry tomatoes. However, this one does not like smoothies. Go figure. I allow him a little lenience because he does get a lot of raw goodness in otherwise. My older son, however, would live on PB&J and chicken nuggest if I allowed it. Thankfully, he's the one that loves smoothies. I just love it when things work out for me this way!
So, in an attempt to find the perfect smoothie for my youngest son (ie, one he'll actually drink without arguement) I decided to try to recreate his beloved V8. The flavor I modeled today's smoothie after was the Strawberry Banana. These are the ingredients as listed on the side of the bottle:
reconstituted vegetable juice blend (water and concnerated juices of sweet potatoes, carrots, tomatoes, beets), reconstituted fruit juice blend (water and concentrated juices of white grapes, oranges, apples, strawberries and clarified bananas), contains less than 2% of the following ingredients: natural flavoring, banana puree, malic acid, vitamin c (ascorbic acid), citric acid, vitamin e (apha tocopheryl acetate).
Ok, not too bad. But I'm quite sure I can do better with my vita-mix. So this is what I blended:
  • A handful of butternut squash chuncks (purchased at costco) (approx 8 1" cubes)
  • 1 medium carrot washed, unpeeled
  • 5 -6 cherry tomatoes
  • a small piece of beet
  • 1 cup of water
  • 1 cup of oganic OJ
  • 1 whole apple
  • 2 bananas
  • 2 large handfuls of frozen strawberries

And guess what??? My youngest gave it a thumbs up! He didn't drink a lot of it, but he rarely drinks or eats much in one sitting. He's more of a grazer. But he liked it and asked if I'd make it everyday. I don't think I'll go that far, but this recipe is definitely a keeper. My husband enjoyed it, despite the fact that it wasn't green. But he did say "just don't tell me what's in it". I told him not to read my blog. To which he answered "I don't". LOL! So go smack your forehead and say "Doh, I coulda had a V8!"

10 January 2010

Day Ten

Good evening smoothie friends! We left the house early this morning and just walked in the door about 10 minutes ago. We've been to Portland, OR and back and we're all exhausted. I made two smoothies this morning for the ride. I made the strawberry milkshake as well as a new one:
  • 2 cups of water
  • 1 large apple
  • 2 bananas
  • 3 handfuls of spinach
  • ice

Gave it a good whirl in the vita-mix and off we went!

09 January 2010

Day Nine

Good Morning internet peeps! Tomorrow is my husband's birthday, but we are celebrating today. His special request for this morning's smoothie: "no rice milk, no coconut anything and just some basic, 'normal' ingredients" (he's no fun!). So, being the loving, adoring, accommodating wife that I am I obliged. Today's smoothie, as brought to you by my husband is:
  • 2 c water
  • 1 large apple
  • 2 bananas
  • 1/8 of a cantaloupe
  • 3 large handfuls of spinach
  • ice

Its quite yummy! Enjoy!

Day Eight, Part Deux

Yesterday's smoothie did not yield enough for all of us to have our desired amount, so I whipped up another one in the afternoon. It was delish! Into the vita-mix:
  • 2 c organic OJ
  • 1 large apple
  • 1 whole kiwi (skin & all)
  • 1 banana
  • 6oz clamshell of raspberries
  • 6oz clamshell of blueberries
  • lots o' spinach
  • ice

gave it a whirl and let 'er rip! It was good. DH said it was a bit too citrusy for his taste, but I think that was the combination of kiwi and OJ.

08 January 2010

Day Eight

Today's smoothie was fairly simple. Into the vita-mix:


07 January 2010

Day Seven

WooHoo! We made it a whole week! How are you guys feeling? Are you noticing anything different? I'd love to hear how your first week went. Some things I've experienced and have heard from others is that for the first few days you may experience some negative side effects. Especially if you have been consuming a standard american diet comprised of processed foods, refined sugar and lots of white flour, animal protein and fast foods. A lot of people notice a difference in their, um, digestive abilities. Green Smoothies will clear ya out! But that's a good thing! Some other symptoms include headaches, a bit of nausea, muscle aches, etc. These are short lived and its actually your body trying to rid itself of the toxins that the green smoothies are pulling out of your cells. Keep up the green smoothie habit and these symptoms should go away quickly.

Now, onto today's smoothie. I've been experimenting quite a bit lately so today I went totally minimalist. Into the vita-mix:
  • 1 apple
  • 2 bananas
  • 3 handfuls of spinach
  • 2 cups of rice milk
  • big squirt of flax oil
  • ice

I thought it was a bit bland and my husband didn't care for it at all. The kids haven't tried it yet, but I'm going to add some mixed frozen berries for them and that's how I'll drink my second pint this afternoon. Live and learn!

So, what's with all the rice milk lately? My oldest son has been requesting "milk shake" type smoothies this week and I use rice milk to achieve that texture. I'm currently reading the book "The China Study" and it really has me rethinking the amount of cow's milk we consume. Hopefully soon, I'll get around to making my own, raw almond milk. I can really have some fun with that!

06 January 2010

Day Six

Oh how I wish I wish I had a camera to show you today's smoothie. Its neon pink. Truly. Like Wet 'n Wild lip gloss circa 1984. Honestly. Husband isn't too excited about the broken camera. I mean there are three of them sitting on the desk in front of me right now. They are all dead. I can't understand why he's upset. I'm doing my best to butter him up for a new one though. Preparing his favorite meals, offering "special favors". Oh sorry. TMI? (I'm KIDDING! Hi Mom!) :D

Ahem, ok on to the smoothie! We're nearing the end of the first week and you know what that means, right? It means we're nearing the end of my produce supply. The kids requested a "smoothie that isn't green" today. Oh, did I mention we're a homeschooling family? No? Ok, so we're a homeschooling family. And smoothies are a big part of our day. We took a month long break ~ from school AND from smoothies during the holidays and getting back into our routine this week has proven to me more challenging than I thought. So, in an effort to get them more on board with the smoothies (they are required to drink them, but honestly Mommy has a much better day when I don't have listen to the whining and negotiating (can I just drink two tomorrow?) and mumbling and the grumbling) I decided to honor their request. They just said it couldn't be green (or have leaves in it *snicker*), they didn't say it couldn't be choke full of healthy goodness! So I grabbed some stuff out of my freezer and off we went!
  • The rest of the box of rice milk (approx a cup or so)
  • one apple, chopped
  • a handful of mixed frozen fruit (strawberries, pineapple, grapes & peaches ~ bag bought at walmart)
  • a handful of frozen cherries
  • a carrot
  • a 1/4 of a beet (frozen)
  • some OJ to keep it all movin' in the blender
  • a squirt of agave

A beet???? Yes, a beet. I buy a bunch at a time, trim of the greens (keep those for green smoothies!) and cut the beets into quarters then put them in a ziploc and into the freezer they go! I don't use them all of the time, but they do show up in smoothies occasionally. They do have an earthy flavor and while I don't mind it, a little squirt of agave is enough to mask it for the kids. Enjoy!

05 January 2010

Day Five

I'm still sans camera and I was fairly busy today so I just threw some stuff in a blender and it came out remarkably well. I love it when that happens! Today's recipe:
  • 2 c Rice Milk
  • 2 handfuls semi frozen strawberries
  • 3 big handfuls spinach
  • a banana
  • a squirt of agave
  • a splash of vanilla extract
  • a big handful of ice

Dumped it all in the vita-mix & let 'er rip. It came out like a strawberry milkshake. YUM!

04 January 2010

Day Four

Well, its a good thing the last few posts have been fairly picture heavy because today's has ZERO pictures. Why, you ask? Oh my camera died. Its dead. Its ok though because it was a dinosaur. I borrowed it from my FIL a few years ago when my youngest son killed my last one. Throwing a camera onto a gravel driveway? Not a good idea. So, my husband has been talking about getting a new camera soon, so I guess now's the time eh?

Ok, on to the smoothie. I sssooo wish I had a camera because today's smoothie was PHENOMENAL!!! It is divine. Its amazing. Its scrumptious. Have I mentioned how much I like today's smoothie? I've linked to all my ingredients though so you can see what I used.

I wanted something indulgent, but I didn't want to pay for it later. So I thought I'd try something a little different today and it was, well you get the picture. I threw the basic smoothie starter out the window today. And this is what when into my Vita-mix:

  • 1 cup of Rice Milk (original flavor)
  • 2 bananas
  • approx 1/4 cup (maybe a little more) Adam's Natural Peanut Butter
  • 3 handfuls of spinach
  • 1 tbsp organic cacao powder (I couldn't find raw powder)
  • about a tsp of vanilla extract
  • a squirt of agave
  • 2 big handfuls of ice

It tastes just like a peanut butter milkshake. Oh wow. Oh wow Oh wow Oh wow. Ok, I'm off to hide in the corner and drink all of it. I'll just tell the kids that today's was yucky. If they don't notice the green dribble running down my chin. Mmmm......green dribble. I have to go. A smoothie is calling my name.

03 January 2010

Day Three

Today we went tropical!! Read below to see the yummy goodness!

Today I used OJ in my basic smoothie starter instead of water. It added some nice flavor and some additional Vit C.

I was also running low on spinach, so I added a few leaves of rainbow chard. Its another very mild green and adds little flavor, but packs a big nutrient punch. If you are new to green smoothies, I wouldn't make a whole smoothie out of chard, but if you add just a few leaves in with your spinach, you won't notice a difference.

Frozen mango, papaya and pinapple (not pictures). YUM. I usually buy this at Trader Joe's however I have recently discovered a nice selection of frozen fruit at my local Walmart. Who knew?

FLAX OIL! Its a very important source of Omega-3's. Be sure to buy a high quality oil, in an opaque bottle and keep it refrigerated. Cold pressed is best.

I use Raw Organic Blue Agave to sweeten up my smoothies. Use it sparingly at first, as its 4x sweeter than honey. I over used it a little this morning and I'm feeling a little sticky. ; ) However, it is slowly absorbed into the blood and has a very low glycemic index, so even though I went a little over board, I still won't get that spike in my blood sugar I would have if I'd used regular honey or sugar.
So today's recipe looked like this:
  • My basic smoothie starter with apple, substituting OJ for water
  • A banana
  • A large handful of spinach and 3-4 leaves of rainbow chard
  • A handful of frozen mango
  • A handful of frozen papaya
  • A handful of frozen pineapple
  • A big squeeze of Flax Oil
  • A big squeeze of Agave

And I feel like I should be sitting on a tropical beach somewhere with a little umbrella in my smoothie. Exactly what I needed on this cold, gray day in the Pacific Northwest!

02 January 2010

Day Two

***Warning! Today's post is very picture heavy!***
Its day two of my smoothie challenge & things are going well. Today I thought I'd show you step by step how I make my smoothies. Don't worry, not all posts will be this picture heavy : )

I started with my Basic Smoothie Starter with apple. I just cut out the core and chop the apple into dice sized pieces. Before I got my Vita-mix, I usually used pears as they are softer and a little easier on the motor.

I added two bananas. Mmmmm.....bananas.

Then came the spinach. Lots and lots of spinach! This is the good stuff! About two whole salads worth of spinch. Right there. In my blender. People think I'm nuts. I'm ok with that.

Blueberries. I splurged this week and bought some fresh berries. I was getting sick of frozen. Fresh is always best, but this time of year I buy what I can find and rely heavily on frozen fruit. I just make sure there is no added sugar or other ingredients.

Stuff it all in the Vita-mix and let 'er rip!

Keepin' things moving!

Lookin' good. Actually, its looking a little like mud. But I know it will taste good. That's what's important. If you can't handle the look of it you can put it in an opaque cup. I prefer a pretty glass.

More blueberries. Actually, I just couldn't fit them all in before I blended it. What is not pictured is several berries making the plunge and bouncing all over my counters. That's when I decided to add them in two batches.

ICE!! If I'm not using any frozen ingredients I like to add ice. It makes the smoothie nice and cold and gives it a bit of a slushie feel.

(please ignore the blue fingernail. a pen exploded on me yesterday.)
The Meyer Lemon. Its a hybrid between a traditional lemon and a mandarin orange. They are sweeter and a little less tart. I probably should have used them yesterday and then maybe my husband's reaction would have been a little more subdued. But I didn't have enough. Anyway, I just juiced half of this guy into our smoothie. Just to brighten up the flavor a bit.
Put smoothie into a pretty glass and add cheesy garnish. (not pictured: digging out a few lemon seeds after removing said garnish)

I keep my smoothies in a glass pitcher in the refrigerator and they'll keep for about a day or two. If there's any left. We usually finish the whole batch. And sometimes make more. Its an addiction around here. I'm tellin' ya!

Um, honey do you think you could take your eyes off The Bee Movie for just a second or two and look at Mommy? How about looking a little more enthusiastic, too? Could you do that for Mommy? Please?

Hhhmmmmm. I guess he gave me one of my requests.

Thank you, sweetie!

01 January 2010

Day One


Today's the day!! Its my first day of my Green Smoothie Challenge. I weighed 223 lbs this morning. Everyday I will drink one quart of smoothie and I'll blog all about it. The good, the bad, and the ugly! I will get healthier, leaner and fitter this year.
Today's smoothie was:
  • Basic Smoothie Starter with apple
  • 1/2 c of freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • a couple big squirts of Raw Organic Agave Nectar
  • (2) 6oz clamshell packages of fresh raspberries.
  • Ice

I was going for a Raspberry Lemonade type of flavor. My husband tried it and immediately yelled Yaaaaawhhhhhoooooo!!! Kind of like YeeHaw, but with a Yawho! It was a little tart. But I enjoyed it.