25 April 2010

Sea Vegetables


I bought these Dulse Flakes a few months ago. They've been sitting on my shelf ever since. I knew they were healthy. I knew they were a superfood. I also knew they were way out of my comfort zone. When I decided to shake things up around here and switch the direction of this blog from simply listing my smoothies to talking about them and about the ingredients and why, I knew it was time to break out the sea vegetables. I was hesitant. I was scared. I didn't want my smoothie to taste like the ocean. I didn't want it to taste like mussels. I hate mussels. I set about to make my current favorite smoothie (spinach, peaches & strawberries) and I went ahead and opened up this jar and threw in a pinch or two. Its not much, but from my understanding, a little bit of sea vegetables go a long way. And ya know what? I couldn't even taste them. I might go nuts next time and add a whole "dash". I'm outta control, kids.
So, why do we need sea vegetables in the first place? Well, click on those links up there to read all about them. But in a nutshell, sea vegetables have been a main staple in Asian cultures for many many generations, but they are just catching on here, and with good reason. Studies have shown sea vegetables can reduce your risk for certain cancers, they can help guard against heart disease, ease menopausal symptoms, act as an anti-inflamatory & they are jam packed with loads of trace vitamins & nutrients that most current S.A.D. (Standard American Diets) are lacking. They are sun dried on the banks and rocks of the sea (and sometimes fresh water lakes) and therefore contain live, active enzymes and they are rich with amino acids and other minerals. They are an excellent source of Folate, Vitamin K, Magnesium & Iodine. (just to name a few benefits....)
How does one use dried sea vegetables? Sprinkle them on salads, season your soups or stews with them or toss them in a green smoothis. Go grab some. You'll be glad you did.

Um, Hello??

Blogger is f*&^ing with me. It really is. Its trying to move everything to the center when I want it justified to the left and its trying to justify everything when I want it centered. I give up. So, I'll just type and see what happens.

A while back, my husband and I decided to do an impromptu 24 hour green smoothie cleanse. And then you never heard from me again. No, the cleanse did not kill me. It did, however, open my eyes and help me deal with some of my lingering food issues. You can read about my history with food here. Since starting this journey I've learned to really listen to what my body needs. I've become resentful of how junk food makes me feel. I enjoy feeling good and I've finally made the psychological connection that the way I feel is relative to the food I consume. I've always known it intellectually, but I had to get past my emotional addiction. I'm finally making breakthroughs.

So, back to this cleanse. Neither of us lasted the full day. We both worked out that day, didn't eat enough protein the day before to sustain us and by about 3pm we were both experiencing what I can only describe as "the munchies". Not wanting to set myself up for an all out binge the next day, I decided to snack on some apple slices & raw cheese. We had a typical dinner (at this point I can't remember what we had), but overall it was still a very healthy day. It completely opened my eyes to how often I'm still mindlessly snacking throughout the day. It doesn't matter if its carrot sticks or raw almonds, if I'm not really hungry they are still needless calories. I found myself wandering through the kitchen just opening the cabinets & refrigerator at random. I've been much more aware of my snacking and noshing ever since, so even though I didn't last the full 24 hours, I'm still calling it a success. I'll schedule another group cleanse again later. It was a fabulous experience.

Now, about the blog. I've been thinking about this for quite a while now. My blog is was boring. Showing up and listing a few ingredients each day was getting rather tedious for me, and I can only imagine how mind numbingly boring it was for you guys! I began to feel like it was getting in the way. It was taking valuable time I could have used to research & share other fabulous nutrition based information with you guys. And my smoothies recipes were getting redundant, don'tcha think?

So, I've made some decisions. I'm not going to show up and just list my smoothies each day. I want to share other things with you guys. I want to share more about how I'm feeling, what I'm eating (in addition to smoothies), new things I'm learning, thoughts I'm developing, and on and on. The good stuff. I want to share the good stuff. I'm still committed to drinking a quart of green smoothie everyday and I will continue to share some recipes. The really, really good ones (and the really really bad ones). I want to talk about smoothies, not just list them. So, I'm not going to promise that I'll be here everday, but I do promise that I'm still drinking my smoothies behind the scenes.

That being said, I have a small confession to make. I didn't drink a single drop of smoothie yesterday. The reason? I forgot. I KNOW! I'm still not sure how it happened. We were extremely busy yesterday, never taking the time to actually sit down and sit still. I knew from the get go that my smoothie drinking would happening in the evening and I was ok with that. The problem was, when evening showed up and I got the kids in bed (more like night than evening!) I was so exhausted I just crawled into bed and went to sleep. Totally forgot!! I did dream about green smoothies (and Reese Witherspoon, oddly) but I'm aware that that doesn't cut it. I woke up this morning and immediately drank yesterday's quart and I'll drink another quart later today. I know its not the same and I feel sick because of it. I can't believe I've missed a day. I felt like I had to come clean to you guys. I'm human and I make mistakes. I also realize that whole nutrition is not an all or nothing thing. So I missed a day. Its not going to make my blood pressure spike, I wont' become diabetic tomorrow and I know my health still light years ahead of where it was on Dec 31, 2009. But I'm still pissed at myself. So there you have it. Now, what do YOU want me to write about?

14 April 2010

Thank You for Your Patience......


Making some changes around here. I thank you for your patience!

13 April 2010

Impromptu 24 Hour Cleanse

Hello fellow green smoothie-ers! Today my husband and I were trying to plan out a menu for the week and out of nowhere my husband says "so tell me about a green smoothie cleanse. I might want to do one." I explained that basically, you, um, drink green smoothies all day. I mean, really, there isn't much more to it than that, is there? He asked if he could drink as many as he wanted ~ yes, of course. He asked what it would do to him ~ cleanse, you sweetie. ; )

So anyway, he wasn't too sure about a full three days, so we decided to do a 24 hour cleanse together. I went to make this morning's smoothie and realized we were super low on spinach and had no bananas. Headin' to the store just as soon as he gets back from his run!

Day One Hundred & Two

I didn't get this post up yesterday because I didn't actually make the smoothie until nearly 11pm. My husband got home last night from a four day trip and well, I had more important things to do than write a blog post. *ahem*

Anyway, I went with an old standby, so its not like you missed much : )
  • 2 c water
  • 2 bananas
  • 3 big handfuls of spinach
  • frozen mixed fruit (pineapple, strawberries, peaches & grapes)


11 April 2010

Day One hundred and one

Well, that's a mouthful. I posted about my new liquid crack yesterday and how I was devestated that I couldn't find it around here. Never fear my lovelies, I found it at my favorite grocery store. The website just wasn't updated to show I could buy it in my area. Phew!! That was close! Having found it, I wasn't afraid to use the rest of it in today's smoothie:
  • 2 c VioVi
  • 1 banana
  • 3 handfuls of spinach
  • frozen peaches

Everything is better with peaches. My life is right with the world now.

He's learning.....

This is Ben. He's my oldest child and he just turned 7 a few weeks ago. He's a very focused, very determined little monkey. He's not one to let his emotions show very freely, but when he does love someone, he loves them fiercely. He likes his routines, he likes to know what to expect and while some surprises really light up his eyes, he doesn't like anyone screwing with his food. That includes mom. Changing our family from the Standard American Diet over to a more raw, wholefoods diet hasn't been the smoothest of changes for anyone, but I was really expecting a fight from Ben. Maybe its because he's older and understands more, or maybe its because I've explained to him every step of the way what changes we are making, and why. He's been such a trooper. He's tried most things with an open mind and I do still allow his favorite processed foods, just not as much of them. We're going slow.
So, yesterday when we went to VegFest, I was so proud of him. He tried an olive. He tried vegetarian curry. And he tried wheat grass juice. Those are three things even I wasn't willing to try. He didn't like any of them, but he tried them. I was so proud of him.

These Quaker Chewy Bars are one of his favorite snacks. While they are now made without High Fructose Corn Syrup, they are still a mess of overly processed, high sugar crap. I never bought them often, but now even allowing one box in the house really sends my Mommy guilt button into overdrive. But as I stated above, I haven't taken everything away from him yet. We're doing baby steps.
So, yesterday, while at VegFest we saw a table from Cascadian Farm and they had their Chewy Chocolate Chip bar available as free samples. I grabbed two and threw them in my bag. This morning as I was emptying out my bag and sorting through the mountain of samples, coupons & brochures that followed us home. Ben asked if he could try this bar. I told him of course. He opened it up and took a few bites. He told me it was "OK". Then he said something that made me freeze in my tracks and made my heart swell. He said, "Mommy, I think I like the Walmart ones (Quaker) better because I'm just so used to processed foods. I think once I'm not used to those anymore I'll think these organic bars are awesome." I admit, I had a moment. I nearly cried.
Its been over four months since I started this smoothie challenge and about six months since I've really been making serious changes for my family. Its finally sinking in. He's getting it. He understands. And he wants to be healthy. I love my boy. I love him enough to buy the more expensive organic bars, I love him enough to make him a nutritious, love filled smoothie everyday and I love him enough to make these same changes in myself so I can watch my boy grow into a healthy, fun loving adult.
By the way, after he finished that first bar, he was still hungry and asked if he could have the second one "because it was so yummy" even though it was technically for his brother. I told him sure. I know these bars are still processed and they aren't exactly "health food" but for a quick and portable snack, I'll take it!

10 April 2010

Day One Hundred

WooHoo!!! We made it 100 days! It feels like just yesterday I got this hair brained idea in my head to start a blog! Thank you all for following and playing along. It really inspires me and keeps me going. Trust me, there have been a few days when I would have rather have said 'screw it' and just gone to bed. But I haven't. Because you guys are here cheering me on. I'll post a special giveaway tomorrow so be sure to check back!

I mentioned on Facebook that I was going to Seattle's VegFest today. It was amazing! More details on that tomorrow, though. For now I have to tell you what I found. A new very favorite juice. It's so delicious. Allow me to introduce to you Viovi. YUM......O! WOW!

It is pasturized, so its not completely raw. But its "gently pasturized." See, it says so right there on the label.

The color is beautiful. It looks (and tastes) a little like grapefruit juice. But I don't make that funky swishy face after drinking it like I do with grapefruit juice.

So obviously, today's smoothie features this new gem.
  • 1.5 c Viovi juice
  • 1 banana
  • bunch o' spinach
  • handful of frozen strawberries

I didn't want anything to over power the flavor of this juice. Oh, its heaven on earth, I tell ya.

Day Ninety Nine

I'm a few hours late. We had lunch at a certain chain that's logo has a certain bright yellow "M" in the shape of two arches to help celebrate a little friend's birthday. My brain didn't work right the rest of the night. Bleck! So, here was yesterday's smoothie. I drank a ton and made a whole pitcher to deliver to a friend that just had a baby!
  • water
  • 2 bananas
  • 2 big handfuls of spinach
  • 2 handfuls of frozen mixed fruit (peaches, strawberries, pineapple & grapes)

Its become my favorite standby.

08 April 2010

Day Ninety Eight

Still tired and recovering from my swim yesterday. So why am I still up at nearly 11pm? Good question.
  • 3 huge handfuls of spinach
  • 2 bananas
  • handful of frozen peaches
  • 2 handfuls of frozen cherries

Ok, I have to be honest. As much as I love cherries, I am not a fan of the cherry/peach combo. I think I'll stick to blueberries or strawberries with my peaches :)

07 April 2010

Day Ninety Seven

Well that was embarassing! I can't believe I forgot yesterday's smoothie. Call me out on Facebook the next time that happens, will ya? I feel like I'm walking around in my underwear! I don't really know why. I'm delirously tired, can you tell? My alarm went off at 5 am this morning and I was in the swimming pool by 5:30. I swam with the adult master's program for an hour and then I went to the aquasize class that I normall attend for another hour. I came home, went over some math problems with my son, took a shower and hopped on the ferry to Seattle where I met up with my college roommate that I haven't seen in about 15 years or so. Spent a leisurly 4 hour lunch with her and then came home, fixed dinner and THEN I got to sit down. I'm exhausted. And my brain isnt' working right. I apologize for the misspellings and typos. But my smoothie is yummy : ) Wanna know what's in it?
  • 2 bananas
  • water
  • a big ole bunch o' spinach
  • handful of frozen mixed fruit (strawberries, peaches, pineapple & grapes)
  • an additionaly handful of frozen strawberries

It tastes like a strawberry banana smoothies. Perfect!

Day Ninety Six

I totally spaced on posting a smoothie yesterday. I have no idea how that happened. I don't even remember yesterday. I'm trying with all of my might and I'm drawing a blank. Not just for the smoothie, but for the whole day. Was I here? Were you here? What is my name? Have I met you?

Oh wait....now I remember. I even took pictures. Hhmm, those will be posted another day.
  • 1 large Fuji apple
  • 1 banana
  • bunch o' spinach
  • some kind of frozen fruit (strawberries maybe?) LOL

I do remember that I didn't care for it much. But Mr. Smoothie and lil smoothiekins loved it. I'm losing my mind.....

05 April 2010

Day Ninety Five

Weeelll, another Monday has come and gone with no Musings. I'm not sure what made me think Mondays were good days for my musings posts. I didn't even get a chance to glance at the computer until after 2pm today. And was only at it for less than 5 minutes at a time until 9pm. So, I think I'm going to switch it to "Midweek Musings". Everyone ok with that? Good. Now that we've got that settled:
  • 2 c water
  • 2 bananas
  • 2 c frozen mixed fruit (pineapple, strawberry, peach, grapes)
  • 3 c spinach

Blend til smooth. Enjoy. Yum. Goodnight. :)

04 April 2010

Day Ninety Four

I hope everyone had a fabulous day. Whether today is special to you or just another Sunday, I hope it was filled with love, laughter and SUNSHINE!! I'm lovin' my recent doses of Vitamin D!! I cleaned out the freezer yesterday so I'm using up some ingredients that I found buried down in the bottom! LOL
  • 2 c water
  • 2 c watermelon
  • 3 c spinach
  • 2 bananas
  • handful of sliced frozen granny smith apples
  • big handful of frozen sweet cherries.

Oh my green smoothie. This one was Fantastic! It was sweet, but not sickenly so like some other ones I've made. I am loving the addition of watermelon. I can't wait for this summer!!!

03 April 2010

Day Ninety Three

I have had a horrible headache all day from OD'ing on sugar & white flour. I don't even think all of the smoothies in the world could make me feel better right now. GAH. Thankfully I had a full pitcher of green smoothie in the fridge from yesterday because turning the blender on today may have made my head explode!

Happy Easter everyone. Regardless of what this day, if anything, means to you and your family I hope you are surrounded by those you love!

02 April 2010

Day Ninety Two

I'm having a hard time staying away from the junk food this week. I thought it was because of the crap I ate over the weekend, but then I looked at the calendar and it all made sense. I love hormones. No really, I do : )
  • 2 c water
  • 2 bananas
  • bunch o' spinach
  • ~2 c fresh blueberries (whatever was left in the fridge)
  • ~2 c frozen peaches (whatever was left in the freezer)

Our farmer's market starts one week from tomorow and I. CAN'T. WAIT!!! I'll be cleaning out my fridge/freezer over the next week to make room for all of the fresh goodies I'll be bringing home. I'm sure I'll go a little overboard that first week!

01 April 2010

Day Ninety One


Ahhh, blogger ate my post! Gah, how dare it. I made my smoothie last night and drank it this morning/afternoon and promtply forgot to post. WHOOPS! Sorry about that!

  • 2 c OJ
  • bunch o' spinach
  • frozen strawberries
  • frozen peaches
  • 2 bananas

Seriously, I can't get enough of the strawberry/peach combo. I'm beginning to sound like a broken record, aren't I? Am I dating myself here? Talking about broken records? HA!

BTW, if there are any crafters out there, I'm hosting a giveaway (destashing time!) on my other blog. Just an FYI.