Thursday, June 3, 2010
Tuesday, May 18, 2010
I had the opportunity to try out some U Tubes from my friend Nate Brown at RevHoney. I love them! I was initially worried about how it would taste....boy was I surprised! They come in three flavors: strawberry, raspberry and blackberry. Now, it does feel a little weird squishing a gel-like substance in your mouth, the fact that they taste good makes it all worth it!
Darcy took some to work and ate them in the afternoon when he typically gets "shaky" from whacked out blood sugar. They worked like a charm and it was much healthier than grabbing a snickers.
U tubes are designed as a fuel for athletes before and after workouts to ensure the liver is properly fueled. By doing this, it ensures the body will not be breaking down muscle to fuel the brain.
Just because they were designed with athletes in mind does not mean they are exclusive for athletes. Anyone who needs a shot of energy in their day can use these.
U tubes have 3 ingredients: freeze dried fruit, honey and citric acid. How simple is that? It scares me when I can't pronounce half of the ingredients in a product I eat, nevermind actually knowing what they are. Not a problem with U Tubes!!
So, click on the link above to learn how to order these for yourself. Also check out the links on their site to become a fan on facebook and to follow on twitter.
Saturday, May 15, 2010
Chicken Salad with Red Grapes and Toasted Pecans
1 pound boneless skinless chicken breast, poached and cooled
1 cup halved red grapes
1/3 cup chopped pecans, toasted
1/3 cup low-fat plain Greek yogurt
1/4 cup chopped celery
1 teaspoon honey
1 teaspoon cider vinegar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
For 1 sandwich
2 slices whole-wheat sandwich bread
1 butterhead lettuce leaf
Use your fingers to shred the chicken into a large bowl. Add the grapes and pecans and toss gently to mix the ingredients. In a small bowl, stir together the yogurt, celery, honey, vinegar, salt, and pepper. Pour the dressing over the chicken and toss to coat. Store the salad in a tightly sealed container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Let stand at room temperature for about 15 minutes before serving
To make sandwich, toast the bread if desired. Place 1/2 cup chicken salad on one slice. Top with the lettuce leaf and the other slice of bread. Slice in half and serve
Makes about 4 cups salad
Per 1/2 cup of salad: 118.6 calories, 5.1 g fat, 12.9 g protien, 5.6 g carbs, 93.8 mg sodium
Of course I made some changes! I baked my chicken and cubed it instead of poaching and shredding with fingers. Also, I didn't have any leaf lettuce to put on the sandwich.
This was super yummy! Give it a try!
Tuesday, May 11, 2010
The first point the authors make is that honey is the ideal fuel for the liver:
The near one-to-one ratio of fructose to glucose found in honey - nature's perfect ratio - actually facilitates glucose intake into the liver. Fructose optimizes the conversion of glucose to glycogen in the liver by prompting the release of glucokinase from the liver nuclei. Glucokinase converts glucose to glycogen, which is then stored in the liver. Thus a large glucose load is prevented from entering the circulation and causing a sharp elevation in blood sugar. Consuming natural energy-packed honey with it's ideal ratio of fructose and glucose is an ideal way to replenish liver glycogen and at the same time control blood glucose levels.(from The Honey Revolution, pg 29)
Glycogen is what fuels the brain and it is stored in the liver. If the liver is not stocked up with glycogen, the brain sends out signals for muscle proteins to be broken down and sent to the liver to be converted into glycogen. If you are like me, I would like to keep my muscle! Fueling the liver with honey can prevent that muscle break down.
One of the times our brain is most at risk of low fuel is during the night fast. Sleep is when our body recovers and restores itself--fueled by body-fat. If our liver is not stocked, the brain triggers the adrenal glands to release cortisol and adrenaline. This puts that repair process on hold and the opposite is done--muscle is broken down to fuel the brain.
The other critical time for the brain is during exercise where the same scenario plays out. If the liver is not stocked, muscle is broken down to fuel the brain. This is definitely not the desired effect people want from exercise.
Now obviously, we can't survive on honey alone. A balanced diet that draws for fresh ingredients is key to a healthy lifestyle. A rule I try to go by come from Biggest Loser trainer Jillian Michaels: "If it comes from the ground or has a mother, you can eat it." Fake foods (highly processed and modified) reek havoc on our metabolism. No amount of honey is going to be beneficial if all you eat is junk!
If you would like to check out this book you can order it here. Another work of note is The Hibernation Diet which gives some recipes as well as an excercise program to optimize the effects of the honey-filled diet.
**I was provided with a copy of both The Honey Revolution and The Hibernation Diet by my friend Nate Brown at RevHoney for review on my blog. The opinions expressed are my own and I was not compensated in any other way for this review.**
Next Review---U-Tubes!! Stay tuned!!
Thursday, May 6, 2010
In a front float (with me holding her up) she kicked her legs and stroked with her arms! That is a big improvement from screaming and clinging to my arm for dear life! Then she put her whole face in the water...and again...and again!
The final success was going down the big water slide with her teacher at the bottom to catch her. She had a flotation belt on and after watching the other smaller kids make it okay, she was ready to go! Well, she must have leaned back and made no attempt to stop herself. She flew out of the end of the slide right past her teacher! The teacher had to swim about 5 feet to get to her. Needless to say, she went under! I was very proud of her but she definitely didn't want to try that again!
Next up, Sam! I am tempted to register for an evening class so Darcy can have a shot at it.
Friday, April 30, 2010
So, in my last post, I had resigned to the fact that Emma's remaining long hair would be lobbed off for Locks of Love. The thought of another little girl being blessed by this tragedy warmed my heart.
On Wednesday evening, I was prepping Emma for the hair appointment with Val the next morning.
It was after this, my husband bared his heart and soul to me. "Can't we just leave it long in the back and feather it in the front?"
Before I could stop myself, the words came spilling out, "NO! THAT'S A MULLET!"
Then he looked at me with a little bit of pain in his eyes, "This is killing me..."
Ooops! I guess I was so concerned with myself coming to grips with this, that I totally lost sight of how my hubby felt. I guess there truly is something to be said of the father-daughter bond.
So, we compromised and kept the back as long as possible so the layers wouldn't look silly. I say we, but I really mean my sister, Val. Actually, I wasn't even there when she cut it. She is that good and I trust her that much!!
Wednesday, April 28, 2010
My Tuesday was going fine. I had the normal skirmishes to break up, but no major events to speak of....until I took Sam potty at 4:00 or so. It was a number 2 so I took a seat on the side of the tub while Sam hunkered down. We talked about the spider he had seen outside, his ouchy on his leg and numerous other things to pass the time. I had kept the door open a little to listen for the other kids and hadn't heard a peep. When Sam finished, we walked into the dining room to see that some one had taken a few snips off of Emma's winter coat fringe (we had left her jacket somewhere, so had to pull it out on a chilly day). I then noticed the pink handled safety scissors were no longer on the table.
My kids love to cut paper....it was our craft for the day....I know...its not much of a craft....but I am not crafty...that's another story though.
I went downstairs to find the scissors. When I got there I found some paper trimmings scattered about. Emma came around the corner and I found my culprit. I was pretty calm as I explained we don't use scissors to cut our coats and we only cut paper at the table. Emma and I began cleaning up the paper.
It was then I began to notice a few clumps of hair and my mood began to change....before long I had two handfuls of hair! Worse yet---i found several clumps of brown hair! Yup! She had taken the scissors to my nephew Mason as well! (Abigail must have run away scared! She wanted nothing to do with it!!)
I was beside myself! Part of me wanted to cry, the other part wanted to laugh. We had been talking about doing locks of love for several months, so I shouldn't be upset, right? Maybe I was okay with the thought of cutting her hair, because I knew she wasn't ready to cut it. Now that here hair is really gonna be short...I had to do a little grieving!
Luckily, my sister Val is not only a forgiving person, she is also an awesome stylist who will give my daughter an amazing cut. She was also able to salvage Mason's hair.
I will post her new hairdo in a few days....she is stuck with the chopped look till tomorrow.
Tuesday, April 27, 2010
Monday, April 26, 2010
So, how do I foster that sense of adventure and need for battle without raising a hoodlum? How do I teach him honor and respect without crushing him at the same time??
Here is the part of the post where I give the answers....well, I am sorry to disappoint, but I don't have them. Hopefully just being aware of his needs will allow me to respond in the right way.
My friend Erin has started the Moms of Boys Society where mothers of boys can encourage each other in how to raise our boys. We don't need to weed out all of their boyishness...we need to embrace it and see how it will make them into wonderful men when they are grown. Raising boys is an adventure...with God's help, I am jumping in!
Thursday, April 22, 2010
So now I need to spend a few nights curled up with some books. My hubby is out of town this weekend camping. I don't sleep well when he is gone, so I am sure I will be able to get a good jump on these three new books.
Tuesday, April 20, 2010
The ride home was even noisier than the trip there...I didn't think it was possible. The craziness continued when we got home and I prepared supper. Luckily Darcy stepped in before I blew my top at them!
Bedtime was at 8:30 but they were not all asleep till close to 10:00.
All were up by 7:30 and demanding pancakes!! Emma and Abby helped out while the boys played trains. So far this morning, we have been outside, played with play-doh, colored pictures, had snack and fought like siblings!
Only 7 hours left! Now I just need to look at me calendar and figure out a time for my kids to have a sleepover at Abby and Mason's house!
Sunday, April 18, 2010
Failed at keeping up my house. Failed at parenting. Failed as a wife.
Why? Because I keep trying to use will-power instead of God-power.
All of my responsibilities are "God-sized." I am doomed to fail on my own power. I am overwhelmed by my shortcomings and then I just stop trying. I am not honoring God by how I live my life at home.
How am I supposed to do it all?
I am not supposed to do it all.
He can accomplish anything! Even help this pack-rat conquer clutter! Through Him, I can have victory over the pile of laundry! I know this may sound corny, but it is true! Through the power of the Holy Spirit, my attitudes, behaviors and habits can be transformed! I have faith that God can use me to bring glory to His name in how I love my husband, how I raise my kids and how I manage my house! All things are possible through God!
My life is more than just a to do list of chores and errands. My role is not just to cook and clean for my husband, it is to love and serve him as unto the Lord! I am not just a caregiver for my children, I am the one who gets the honor of teaching them how to live a life for the Lord! I am not just supposed to check off things from my to do list so I can feel good about myself or feel productive...I am to do it so others can see God working through me!
God wants to do ridiculous things through me! Things that I cannot do! Things that people will marvel at and KNOW that God is the one who did them!
So, are you living a God-powered life today? Let's make our lives a testimony of HIS greatness!
**disclaimer: When I say "serve my husband" I mean that I treat him with as much or more respect and attention as I would a guest in my home....why would I not choose to give my husband the best of me??**
Thursday, April 15, 2010
2 sticks margarine
1 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup white sugar
2 eggs (beaten)
1 tsp baking soda dissolved in 1 Tbsp HOT water
3 1/3 cups flour
1/8 tsp salt
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 bag chocolate chips
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Using a stand mixer, cream together the margarine and sugars. Add eggs and mix until fluffy. Add baking soda, flour and salt--mix. Next add the vanilla--mix. Finally, add the chocolate chips. Using a cookie scoop, place dough on baking sheet. Bake for 11-13 minutes.
The last time I made this, I was running low on white flour, so I substituted in 2 cups of whole wheat flour along with 1 1/3 cup white flour. They tasted a little different. I noticed a little more of a grainy texture to them, but the definitely held their shape better while baking--they were nice and thick and still super moist.
Also, I heat the Tbsp of water in the microwave for 30 seconds (until it is steaming). I have tried using hot water straight from the tap, but it doesn't seem to work as well.
Wednesday, April 14, 2010
While at UNL, I worked part time at an emergency shelter for kids and teens in the foster care system. It was a temporary place for them until they found more permanent housing. It was a VERY challenging job. I was stretched a great deal---working overnight shifts, fighting exhaustion, being verbally abused and physically threatened.
I graduated from UNL with a Bachelor's Degree in Family Science with an emphasis in Family Financial Managment. My first "real" job out of college was at Consumer Credit Counseling of NE. I was one of those few people who actually had a job that matched perfectly with their major! I worked there for 3 years or so, then had the opportunity to work from home for Lincoln Action Program as a HUD Housing Counselor.
It was then, that I found out I was pregnant with Emma. She was quite the disruption to our routine, but totally worth it! (We had been married for 9 years before having her...so we were pretty set in our routine!) After Samuel was born 19 months later, I stopped working for LAP. The grant was not being renewed and I felt God was calling me to be a full-time stay-at-home mom.
It also made me available to provide child care for my twin niece and nephew. They are 6 months younger than Emma, so my house can get pretty crazy when they come over! It's all worth it though! I love them and I love being able to help my sister out by watching them. (Also, I get the big perk--she takes my kids 1 day per week for me!!)
So that is some of the basics. I plan to take some time and talk more deeply about my kids and hubby, but running out of time right now! The kids want to make some chocolate chip cookies with me!
Tuesday, April 13, 2010
I am the youngest of 5 children (1 boy and 4 girls) and I grew up on a farm in southeast Nebraska. Not a cool farm with all sorts of animals to tend to, just fields of wheat, soybeans and milo. I was very shy as a child. My older siblings spoke for me...why would I need to talk?
My first day at Kindergarten Round-up was the first time I had ever been without a parent or a sibling. I was traumatized to say the least! I remember just sitting and crying the entire morning! The boy I was sitting next too (I still remember his name: Brad Garrison!) kept asking me if I wanted to color. What a sweetheart. (On another random note, I walked with him in my graduation processional...that's a rural community for you!)
I was raised in a Christian home. I am so thankful to God for that. We didn't have much as far as money or possessions went, but what my parents instilled in me is priceless. Yes, they made mistakes, but they were always striving to live their lives for the Lord....how much better can you get as a parent??
I met my husband when I was 15 at my church youth group. I played hard to get for nearly a year....until he decided to date another girl! (Yes, I remember her name, but will not write it here...ok here is a hint: it starts with a K, ends with an M and has vowel in between!) That got my attention and he broke it off with her after a couple of weeks. Then I was on board!!
We got married when we were both 19, after my freshman year at UNL. He had graduated from SCC Milford about 6 months before the wedding. After that, he worked full-time while I finished up my bachelor's degree.
More to come tomorrow!
Monday, April 12, 2010
Spring opens up all sorts of opportunities to be hurt in some way...skinned knees, bruised elbows, bee stings, sunburns. My mother bear instinct tells me I should protect my children from these things....but if I do that, what amazing things will they miss out on? Wind blowing thru their hair, digging in the dirt for worms, smelling sweet flowers, running thru the sprinkler.
How many times do I choose not to expose myself and be real with people, just so I can avoid the possibility of getting scratched up or bruised? If I do that, I am depriving myself of all the great things God wants to do in me through the process. Also, God wants to use me to minister to others...if I take the safe road, I am depriving them of an opportunity to learn something from God. How stuck up is that!!!
How bad is a skinned knee anyways? Emma was off running again 2 minutes after I put on the band-aid. There are way to many great things you miss out on if you choose to burrow yourself into your "safe place" and not branch out and experience new things. We are God's tools in this world--He works through us to accomplish great things! He will allow us to experience some hurts, but He is always there watching over us.
Friday, April 9, 2010
One thing I am most excited about is Seeds Family Worship. My friend Erin (aka my blogging inspiration, check out her site) has been using their CD's to help her kids learn about scripture and have an actual "worship" time in her home. It's not like the worship time with think of on Sunday mornings. It's a time to focus on God as a family. That will look different for every family, because every family is different. Seeds Family Worship is an awesome tool to help facilitate that worship time.
Their songs are upbeat and fun. They are based directly on scripture. As much as I love Go Fish, for their silly kids songs, you can't beat the actual Word of God!! You can go their site and actually listen to songs as much as you like without even buying them. They do have CD's available for purchase as well. (Erin keeps the CD's in the car and listens online while at home!)
So my challenge for myself is to take a song each day and learn it with my kids. I want to be deliberate about teaching my kids about Christ, not just letting them pick it up here and there. As they learn to hide His Word in their hearts, I am hoping to do the same!!
Wednesday, April 7, 2010
I nearly cried because she was terrified beyond consoling, and I had to take a stand and physically keep her in the pool. I knew exactly how she was feeling. I had felt that fear many times in my life...as I was shown again this morning, my daughter is nearly a carbon copy of me....at least her personality is.
We don't handle tough situations well. I have learned to work through much of that fear, but my first reaction when confronted with a crisis is gritting my teeth and fighting off the tears welling up in my eyes. After trying to deal with it all on my own and failing, I have learned to trust in the Lord to deal with the crises in my life.
Looking back on it now....God was trying to show me something this morning. The way Emma held onto me with a death grip was how I cling to Him most times. Instead of trusting Him to keep me from going under, I am grabbing onto Him so tight that I am not allowing myself to learn from the situation. Yes, I need to keep hold of him, but I need to trust that His arms will not let me fall. They will not leave me to drown. When I cling that close to Him in fear, I will not be able to show His ability to sustain me through the trials.
And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work.2 Corinthians 9:8 (NIV)
And that concludes my rambling for the day....I hope it made sense to someone!!
Wednesday, March 24, 2010
Emma began begging for a snack a half hour after breakfast.
Some days, I wonder how I get through it all. Then I look to the Lord. He is my refuge. With all the monotony and craziness, He is always there to strengthen me.
"I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me." Phil 4:13
Tuesday, March 23, 2010
Yes, I am one of those nerds who watch LOST! It is one of the highlights of my week, the one show that I allow myself to follow. Now, I do watch other shows, but if my kids are not cooperating or I need to run an errand, I don't freak out over missing them (examples: The Office, The Mentalist, and The Good Wife).
I used to follow some of the blogs and theorize about everything....but it kinda made my brain hurt. So, I have resigned myself to watching this last season on the edge of my seat, a little confused and....sadly, a little LOST. I figure I will just sort it all out when it is over!
Along with a few of my friends (fellow LOSTies), I am planning a party to celebrate the end of the series. It will be bittersweet. I love the show, but I really need to see it get resolved. My only fear is they will leave us hanging.
Back to the party...It really is still in it's infancy stages. I know we have to have some little smokies in honor of the Smoke Monster and something involving mangoes....that seems to be the only fruit on the island. I volunteered to have it at my friend's house since he has a big place and an amazing TV...luckily he was open to the idea. I would have hated to storm his house that night if he didn't want us all there!
Now I have to go get a jump on supper.
Monday, March 22, 2010
So my life is feeling pretty good right now. We are leading at High School Connect Group at Christ's Place this semester. Despite at rough start, I felt like our meeting last night was a turning point and direct answer to prayer. I was able to put it in God's hands and remove my expectations for how the group should go. God is good.
Our MOPS year is winding down and I am planning to step down from my Moppets position. I feel God calling me to invest more of my time in Rock Solid. I still plan to attend next year, just not in a leadership role.
Emma is now 4 1/2. She is on a kick of talking about death. It makes for some pretty interesting dinner table discussions.
Sam is almost 3. He is definitely more dramatic than his sister ever was. He can throw a tantrum with the best of them. On the flip side, he can give the best hugs and kisses! One of my favorite things is picking him up at nursery...his eyes light up and dance when he sees me. He may throw a fit 2 minutes later, but I guess that goes with the territory.
In conclusion.....I would say I will try to post more, but that is probably not gonna happen! I just do not have the same talents and abilities as my sweet blogging friend, Erin! Oh well....I can still wrap presents better than her! I take sick comfort in that!