August 21, 2017

My sweet precious Appie, happy birthday baby!

Apple has stolen so many people's hearts...she has this way about her, her kindness....her sweet spirit. 
She is shy, nurturing and kind and she has this strong desire to take care of others. 

I wish I could put in words how special this little girl is. The way that she is, how she loves and cares for others, the way she loves our family..... she daily tugs on my heart with who she is. 

I will never forget the first day I looked into her little beautiful brown love for this special girl is so so deep. 

 I love you so so much, you have changed our world forever and hold my heart little miss. 

Your spirit is truly infectious- filled with kindness and even at such a young age so filled with selflessness. You are always thinking about everyone else.... we love you so much and are daily blown away by who you are. 

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My Heart.

August 16, 2017

The way she perfectly fits there, be still my heart...

School starts in a week and I already feel homesick for them. 

As I tucked them into bed tonight I told them I felt homesick thinking about them being away during the days. 

Last week Chris brought a microphone out in the living room for the kiddos to do a "performance"...they took turns standing in front of the fireplace and was beyond precious.

I had this moment watching Ainsleigh singing.... will I be watching this video someday at her rehearsal dinner....reflecting on this sweet moment with her tiny voice and little self?

I couldn't help but think..... my kiddos are the greatest gift I have ever been given in life. How when the time comes to hand them off to their spouses, I will be able to look and them and say...I am handing over my greatest, most treasured gift in life. 

Please love, and cherish him/her the way that I have. Please look out for them and fight for them and fiercely love them.... I can't imagine giving over a greater gift in the world. 

I saw a quote on instagram this week.... 

"You will never have this day with your children again. Tomorrow they’ll be a little older than they were today. This day is a gift. Just breathe, notice, study their faces and little feet. Pay attention. Relish the charms of the present. Enjoy today, it’ll be over before you know it." 

I want to soak in every last moment of it. 

Often times I will ask each of them if there are areas I could do better in, 
are you thriving?

Tonight at prayer time Ains said, Mama home is always our safe place.

My prayer is that their home is always a place that has them set up to flourish. 

I love you guys. Each one of you has my whole whole heart.

Clean Eating.

August 12, 2017

Okay, I posted on instagram about our journey recently with “cleaner eating” and had NO idea what a huge response I would get, it was SO encouraging to have so many beautiful accounts to follow and look through! I have been hesitant to share what all we have been doing because it feels intimidating, I am NO expert. I guess in a way I felt unqualified to share but then reading through the comments I had this feeling wash over me- it’s just a story. I can share without knowing all the things, what a great opportunity to open myself up and learn even more! 

Chris first decided he wanted to try eating cleaner and changing what he ate. He has come to me many times and I am generally like “ I eat fine!”- but this time I was okay I am in, lets do this together. I will say I have NO IDEA how I could have done this without him doing it along side me. It helped a ton to be prepping meals together, adjusting together and keeping each other accountable. Many times those first few days we’d say “ don’t do it! its not worth it! “

I really truly thought that I would do this for 6 weeks then stop. I also really felt like I would be overwhelmed and what I found was that I had never felt more free. SO much freedom to not feel like I HAD to eat whatever I was craving. I had more energy, I felt better, everything started to come together!

So this first 6 weeks we were SUPER strict. No sugar, no processed foods, mostly no grain/gluten,  no fruit, small amount of starchy carbs, little to no dairy, and I personally changed the ways I would get the protein. 
The goal was 6-12 CUPS of veggies a day….that is HUGE. Getting FULL on these is a game changer. 

a list of some that I ate on the regular: asparagus, white beans, broccoli, cauliflower mash, brussel sprouts, carrots, green beans, cucumbers, squash, and zucchini! 

for these first 6 weeks I ate almost no: potatoes, peas, corn, oatmeal, popcorn, rice…BUT at the end of the 6 weeks added all of that back in and eat that all now! 
I also added back in fruit! 

So let me first share what a day looked like for me the first 6 weeks and what it looks like now:

6 WEEKS OF life change: ( the one fruit i did eat in this 6 weeks was grapefruit)

Breakfast: egg whites and one cup of vegetables/ 2 ounces ningxia red
10:00am- celery with almond butter
Lunch: Protein complete shake with 2 cups of vegetables
3:00 - ningxia red, 2 cups of vegetables ( you can also make vegetable chips)/ one half grapefruit,
cashews or some kind of nut
dinner: some sort of protein, 2 cups of vegetables

brush your teeth and be done eating 6:00-6:30

One night we ate a pizza: crust made from Cauliflower Pizza Crust, Almond cheese, and a homemade sauce. We also fell in love with Coconut Ice Cream- SO many amazing options when eating this way! 

This is what we have planned for this week for our whole family ( to give you an example of what this looks like moving forward and now includes all of us)!

Broccoli Tots (GF)

Homemade Creamed Corn (GF, DF)

Scalloped Potatoes (GF, DF)

Chicken Parmesan (GF,DF) 
GF Fettucine
Italian Green Beans
Butternut Squash Tacos with Cabbage and Black Bean Slaw
Roasted Mixed Vegetables
Tomato Cucumber Salad
Honey Roasted Carrots
Fajita Soup
8 Layer Taco Salad
Avocado Club Wrap
Quinoa Fruit Salad with Homey Lime Vinaigrette


NOW after that initial 6 weeks I have added back in sweet potatoes, potatoes, beans, peas, corn, oatmeal, popcorn, rice, quinoa, fruit, dark chocolate, corn tortillas! 

What I found was that my tastebuds changed. 
April-June felt like a constant choice…when will this get easier? 

Then sometime in June I felt the change. 
I was never going back- I said at one point at the beginning….when will I look at something that I used to eat and not want to eat it? IT HAPPENED…… my stomach issues went away, my energy level went up, everything shifted and the thought of ever going back- I don’t want to feel that way! There is no going back now. 

There have been a few moments that I cheated and felt AWFUL. like so bad. 

I felt weary to claim anything...." dairy free, gluten free....the list goes on" because there were small things along the way sometime we would miss but for the most part really tried to stick to a plant-based way of eating.  I am going to leave the comments open because I have loved looking through links from each of you, or hearing your stories, thew way food has changed your life. 

I really want to celebrate choosing the best for ourselves.
 I see a lot of unhealthy being celebrated and I want to be a voice for "you deserve the best for your life, your family, yourself"

The way you feel is important, you are worth it!