Potato and Spinach Tart

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Admittedly, this does seem a bit more like a Spring-y meal, but it was delicious and perfect for fall and I don’t wanna toot my own horn, but…TOOT TOOT.

This was surprisingly easy.  I had a bunch of random ingredients that just seemed to work together, not to mention a PLETHORA of potatoes thanks to my awesome co-op.  I’ve seen potatoes and sweet potatoes used as a ‘crust’ for quiche before, so I thought – why not!  Here it is, you guys.  You’re welcome.  Ps, this is definitely one to pull out to impress folks…keep that in mind.

SPINACH AND POTATO TART

About 2 – 3 Idaho potatoes
Olive oil
Approx 2 cups loose spinach, stems removed
2 eggs
1 cup Greek Yoghurt (full fat)
Juice of 1/2 lemon plus zest
Parsley and chives
Salt and pepper to taste

Wash and slice potatoes 3mm thick, one length wise and 2 across (so you have a mix of oval pieces and round pieces).  Heat some oil and salt in a skillet and fill with single layer of potato slices.  Cook until softened, transfer to paper towel and repeat with more potato slices until all of them are cooked.  Once slices are cooked, line a pie/quiche dish with them, being sure to cover as much surface area as possible.  Preheat oven to 375F.

Now, wash spinach and sauté in a pan until wilted, about 4-5 minutes.  Transfer to a colander to  get rid of any excessive moisture and let cool.  In a bowl, whisk eggs, yoghurt, lemon juice/zest and herbs.  Stir in spinach and season with salt and pepper to taste.

Pour into pie dish (already layered with potato slices) and spread evenly.  Bake for about 40 minutes or until firm and golden.  Serve with a delicious side of salad and revel in your magnificent creation.

Like, this thing is BEYOND delicious.  I have to go find a snack.

Posted in Food

Lately – Fall and a Movie list!

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Scarecrow, Dorothy and the Tin Man (the Dinging Man, I’m told) respectively. That’s the Lion’s Cave in the background.

Fall is here!  The time for sweaters, coffee dates, day walks and lots of family time.  We love the fall and my favorite thing about it so far (other than the new coffee shop that has opened up only STEPS from our back door) are the movies we’ve been watching.  Have you ever noticed how some movies are just better suited to certain seasons?  Well, I certainly think they are and we now have a running list.  This morning we watched the Wizard of Oz – which I first saw when I was two but waited till Scar was four to show her.  I think she GENUINELY believes in everything she sees, so I wanted to make sure she could handle it.  She LOVED it, even though she kept having to shush me because how can you not belt out every single word sung in that movie, seriously?

Anyway, fall has been good to us so far.  Library trips, admiring our neighbors houses as they slowly get spookier and spookier and lots and LOTS of snuggles.

I think this is my favorite time of year.

Also, here are a few from our (adult) fall movie list:

Life Aquatic
Hot Rod
The Boat That Rocked
Wrist Cutters
Wish I Was Here
Moonrise Kingdom
Spiderman Trilogy
Back to the Future Trilogy

There are about a million more because we are buffs and would never leave the house if we had our way.  What are some of your favorite fall movies?  Tell me in the comments below!

Posted in Uncategorized

Comforting (and healing) Chicken Soup

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Ok, so I’m not just going to pretend that I haven’t been absent from posting for quite a long time.  Let’s all address the elephant in the room with some real life truths:

Truth #1 – Maintaing a full time blog is hard work with very little return.  When I love it, it’s great.  When I don’t, blah ugh pfft.
Truth #2 – Parenting is something best done AWAY from the computer.  Crazy, I know, but I just seem to do a better job of it without a screen in my face.  Lately, the demi-human has been finding her voice and we have been finding it hard to get her to listen, not argue and follow rules that have been in place SINCE HER BIRTH without squashing that little, developing point of view.  Raising a human is almost harder than maintaining a blog, am I right?! (Yes, mommies, I’m kidding).
Truth #3 – I’m grouchy and have to force myself to do EVERYTHING, basically.  Yes, it’s true, I’m not a robot nor am I even a super organized mom type.  I’m a grump with extreme inconsistencies and no drive (at times).  Blame it on my personality (Phlegmatic), blame it on my school (I got good grades by being friends with the teachers) or blame it on the weather (because it NEVER knows what the heck it should be doing), but some days I’m just lucky to get a load of laundry on.  It doesn’t always make it to the dryer, either.
Truth #4 – The blog is undergoing a facelift.  She’s looking a little dated and is about ready for an overhaul.  Also, I’m flakey and my tastes change with the Oklahoma weather, but this should be done real soon and then you’ll be thinking “Daaaang, girl!  This webspace has GOT. IT. GOING. ON”.  Hold tight.
Truth #5 – My husband and I are in the pre-production stages of something VERY EXCITING.  I’m not going to give too much away (I will in the coming weeks, however), but let’s just say if there’s a little person in your life, you’re probably going to love it.  Unless you (and that little one) don’t seem to love amazingly cute, well-made, fabulous things.  In that case, I’m so sorry.  Bear with us!  I’ll be dropping hints here and there and hopefully in the next few weeks we’ll have something to release.  Exciting times call for vague updates, you know.

 
 
Now that I’ve spilled the metaphoric beans regarding my absence, I want to share with you a recipe that has been in my family for a fair while.  It’s simple, and we all have our own variations, but this is mine.  The perfect comfort meal for the grouchy lady mentioned in Truth #3.  The perfect end to a gray, cold day and the PERFECT remedy for all those cold weather-induced ailments.  Oh yes, the humble chicken soup.

Some say it’s an old wives tale that Chicken Soup can fight the flu etc.  It is, if you use chicken breast or any other inferior cut.  What you want to use is something with substance, something with BONES in it.  During the cooking process (particularly in the slow cooker, when done right), the bones release all sorts of good things – antioxidants, collagen, good fats and VITAMIN C!  Obviously there is a long list of benefits to this soup such as promoting joint health, anti-aging properties and overall skin/hair health, digestive health, immune health etc etc, but did you know it is the easiest thing to make, once you know how?  It is.  First, however, I want to teach you what NOT to do:

  • Do not use store bought broth/stock in this soup.  You’re boiling chicken bones and vegetables for pete’s sake.  THE WHOLE THING IS A STOCK.
  • If creaminess is your desire, step AWAY from the powdered cream of mushroom.  Full fat cream, coconut cream or even almond milk (unflavored, unsweetened) will do the trick.
  • Keep away from white meat.  I have never understood the love of chicken breast unless it’s stuffed with cheese and bacon or wrapped in something equally as delicious, plus – no bones.  It is beyond me.  Because this soup needs time, dark meat is the way to go.  No dry chicken morsels here, oh no.
  • Frozen vegetables.  Nope.  The goal here is to nourish.  You’re probably not going to achieve that with anti-clumping agents and other weird junk.  Potatoes, carrots, celery and cabbage are all really cheap, staple items.  Do it right.
  • Lastly, do not attempt this without tongs.  You can thank my poor burned fingertips for that one after the realization that one of the ONLY utensils we do not own are darn tongs.

The Best Chicken Soup

1 Package of chicken legs (about 5-6 will feed about that many people).  Preferably organic, particularly if you worry about antibiotics or hormones as much as I do
2-3 large red potatoes, washed and diced
2 large carrots, roughly chopped
3 stalks of celery, sliced
1/4 small purple cabbage, roughly chopped (I dare you to google the nutrients contained in this humble little veggie)
Any fresh herbs or spices you like, I usually go for fresh parsley, turmeric (just a few shakes, we’re not making a curry) and oregano. YUM
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
1 tsp sea salt (To begin with. Season to taste once the soup is through cooking)
Filtered Water

Place thawed chicken legs (whole, bones, skin, all of it) on the bottom of your slow cooker.  Pour apple cider vinegar over legs, careful to cover them all.  Leave to sit and soak for however long it takes you to chop the vegetables. Pile all vegetables, herbs and spices on top of chicken and fill to the top with filtered water.  Cook on high for 4-5 hours or low for 8 (everyone’s slow cooker seems to be different, so just wing it. I’m sure you know if your cooker is faster/slower than normal).  You’ll know it’s done by reaching into the cooker WITH YOUR TONGS to pull out a leg.  The meat should fall off.  Get a garbage bowl and pull out the legs one by one, carefully removing the bones and skin (to trash) and putting the meat back in the soup.

Once you are sure the soup is free of bones, you’re ready to go!  Add your choice of creamer at this point if that’s your jam and salt to taste.  If you want to make it a bit more filling or if you want to make it go farther, it is especially delicious served over Soba (buckwheat) noodles, brown rice or quinoa.

Refrigerate any leftovers for up to 5 days, making sure to bring to the boil before consuming again.  You’ll know you did a particularly good job if the soup kinda turns gelatinous when refrigerated.  Don’t let it scare you off, that’s what we all aim for, that means you got all the good stuff out of the bones and cartilage.

So there you have it!  A long-winded recount of Chicken Soup.  You’re welcome and happy healing!

Posted in Food

Sugar-free Ketchup

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Okay, okay, okay.  I know I’ve been absent lately – we’ve just moved into our adorable new house that we’ve been working on since FEBRUARY and I am in full on nesting mode.  However, I do have quite a few fun DIY’s, Makers and guest posts coming your way, so be patient with me.  Today, I though I might share another recipe with you that will appeal to young and old alike.  We went through a stage in which Scar-fish just wouldn’t eat ANYTHING unless it was shmeared with ketchup, so I thought I might need to find a recipe for this magic sauce that left out all the yucky, nasty preservatives in order to support this practice (whatever works, right?).

This recipe comes to you via Sarah Wilson’s I Quit Sugar for Life cookbook.  This amazing woman has started a whole movement with something as simple as changing her own lifestyle.  Just goes to show that nothing sells an idea better than real results.  She has done some amazing work and I would highly recommend purchasing this cookbook for your home (I use it daily).  Not only is it filled with wonderful, healthy and (most importantly) easily achievable recipes, it’s also packed with tips, hints and plenty of information to equip you for your journey to health and wellness.  You can find out more about Sarah here and the I Quit Sugar movement here.

(Not your nasty store bought ketchup) Ketchup

4 x 16oz (440g) cans peeled, diced tomatoes
1/2 onion, chopped
1/3 cup apple cider vinegar
1 Tbsp honey or maple syrup (100%)
1 tsp ground allspice
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp ground cloves
sea salt and fresh ground pepper

Place all ingredients into a pot and bring to a boil, stirring to distribute the spices evenly. Reduce heat and simmer for about 50 minutes or until the sauce reduces to almost half and is quite thick. Blend with stick/regular blender or food processor. If the sauce is still a bit too runny, return to heat and reduce for a little longer. Store in a clean glass jar in the fridge for up to 1 month (I divide my mixture and freeze half so it doesn’t spoil).

NOTE:
You can also do this in an electric slow cooker: cook all of the ingredients on high for 2-2 1/2 hours. After blending, return it to cooker for another 30 minutes, without lid, to thicken.

ADULT VARIATION:
Add 1 tsp of cayenne pepper for a ketchup that really packs a punch! Perfect for impressing at those summer cookouts.

BBQ VARIATION:
Mix together 1 cup of your homemade ketchup, 2 Tbsp of apple cider vinegar, 1 teaspoon of Tabasco, 1 clove of garlic (chopped fine), 1 Tbsp paprika, 2 Tbsp of chilli powder (optional) and 3 Tbsp of honey or coconut sugar (use your discretion on this one, you may like a sweeter BBQ, you may not.  Don’t be afraid to taste as you go and add or omit anything you feel).

There you have it!  A great recipe and a bunch of variations to keep you away from your run-of-the-mill, store bought poison.  Like I said before, it’s a HIT with the littles and if they’re putting up a fight with their food, put some ketchup on it!

Posted in Food

Adventure time!

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Just a cute little interim post of our darling girl.  She has imagination oozing out of every pore, honestly.  What kid can be left alone for hours without causing trouble and have the ability to create her own world?  This kid (and by alone, I mean free to roam the backyard or lord over her room whilst we watch from a close distance.  Come on, people, I’m a good parent).

I have a few recipes, new products, guest posts and more exciting things heading your way soon, so stay with me!

Posted in Uncategorized

Gotta have Game

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I have a special Maker to share with you today, yay!  He is a dear friend of mine who has always pursued his passions (whatever they may have been at the time) with drive and tenacity.  His current project, TOTOME, is currently in Kickstarter status and set to be a hit (just the first of many).

See for yourself, or better yet, let the man behind LionSaysRoar - Javed Lendl Sterritt – tell you a bit about himself, TOTOME and the exciting road ahead.

Copyright The Paper Fox 2014.


Hey! My name is Javed Lendl Sterritt and I live in Sydney Australia. I’m a musician, animator, director and budding game developer.  I grew up in Townsville and when I was 22, I chased a girl all the way down to Sydney where I got married and began my creative career.

What are some recent projects you have been involved with?
Being a musician, I had a huge heart for bands, so I originally focused all my energy on music videos.  I’m still working on music videos but have branched out into bringing more ‘creative’ into the world of corporate. I’ve also leant more towards the area of animation and moving imagery.

Tell us about TOTOME!
TOTOME, at its core, is the chance for me and all involved to crack into the world of gaming.  I personally love games and I’m interested in how they affect us as people.  TOTOME, while trying to keep it fun and visually beautiful, is really an experiment for us to see how the community reacts to such a simple game design. 

How did TOTOME come about?
I was thinking about Flappy Bird as I drove home from work one day and I was wondering what it was that made the game so successful.  I arrived at the conclusion that the appeal was in the simplicity.  The game literally had 1 mechanic: tap the screen to make the bird flap. 

Whether the developer knew what he was doing or not, the design was genius.  The game is hard but the difficulty comes more from the skill level of the player, not necessarily hard levels.  As you play more and more, you start to see your skill level go up.  You feel your skill level increase.  This is why I think the game was so successful and I wanted to attempt something similar.

Tell us about a childhood gaming experience that influenced you
I think the first game I ever played was Jungle Jill on my dad’s MSDOS computer when I was a kid.  There was something about gaming that just drew me in.  I’ve always been apt to storytelling and adventure so The Legend Of Zelda, Crash Bandicoot and Sonic The Hedgehog are games I’m drawn to the most. 

Once released, what are your hopes for TOTOME?
I hope people are inspired by it, challenged by it and generally have a great experience with it.  I want TOTOME to be a launching pad for us to reach a bit higher into the gaming community.  If we get this small project made just right, we can begin our next game with a bigger adventure.

Who do you have on your TOTOME team?
There is an INSANELY high level of talent on this game.  Master of all things Adventure and Illustration is CLINT REID, handling the design.  He has a bold approach to his illustration while also being very subtle in his detail.

Music heavyweight JOSH MANCELL is bringing the soundtrack to the game.  He is the man behind the original Crash Bandicoot soundtrack and it is a huge honor to work with him.  I played the first Crash [Bandicoot] when I was 8, in 1996 when it was released, so his music runs deep in my bones.

What is your ALL TIME favorite game?
Oh my glob.  ANY gamer would think this is a hard question.  There are so many experiences and stories to choose from.  I think I’d have to say The Legend Of Zelda: The Wind Waker.  Such a rad adventure and I think Clint is in the same boat (Pun intended. So lame).

Another doozy – favorite game soundtrack?
THIS IS SO HARD, DUDE!  The first thing that jumps to mind is Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons Of Liberty.  So cinematic, epic and emotional.  Lets roll with that!

So, what happens after the Kickstarter Campaign?
When we reach our target, we pay all the artists for their work and start to build the game.  We’ll build a small website to post updates and we’ll try to keep the press rolling with TOTOME as we head towards a Christmas Eve release.

How can we help?!
The biggest help right now would be involvement – whether through sharing or donating.  The more people who know about the game the better!

You can find the KICKSTARTER HERE.

Will we see more from LionSaysRoar post-TOTOME?
Definitely!  We have some super-exciting concepts for some bigger games and personally, I think they’re really fresh.

Lastly, what’s your go-to snack for a big night in?
Easy!  Bowl of cereal.  Milo or Coco Pops. 


How cool is this guy, seriously?  I am so jazzed to have been able to feature Javed and his fantastic work on my blog and I have a feeling it wont be the last time.

For more information about how YOU can get involved (and your name in the credits, whaddup CELEBRITY STATUS!), be sure to visit the TOTOME Kickstarter Campaign page.  I’ll link it again and again ’til you do.

Posted in Uncategorized

Closet Staples

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It’s no secret how fond I am of Popbasic and all the things they produce, but just in case you’re new here, let me give you a quick run down of what Popbasic is.

Popbasic is a company with a fashion focus – that focus being producing timeless, quality, stylish closet essentials at an affordable price.  Ever month Popbasic releases a ‘micro-collection’.  A collection of three items so versatile, so vital and so very very cute that EVERYONE should have them in their respective closets.  By offering such collections monthly, Popbasic have created a fun and affordable way to build up your wardrobe staples.

So, now that you’re versed on the cause – look at this collection!  The Wanderlust collection dropped today and I have to say – IT’S MY FAVORITE ONE SO FAR.  I’ve always said that a striped tee takes the “tee and jeans” look from casual to classy in a matter of seconds.  Additionally, a slouchy cape cardigan is definitely a must in anyone’s fashion stash, suitable for all seasons.  It’s a good piece for layering, for frumpy days and a whole plethora of other occasions (Pretty sure I have several already).  Lastly, let’s not forget that chain.  Gunmetal is obviously the most bad-ass of all the metals/colors and a heavy chain is the perfect ‘statement-but-not-too-loud-of-a-statement’ piece.  I just love Wanderlust.

As stated before, Wanderlust is available for purchase as of TODAY and if you follow THIS LINK (or the ‘I <3 Popbasic’ button in my sidebar) you’ll receive $15 dollars off your purchase.  SCORE.

G’head, stock that closet with multi-seasonal staples.  You know you want to.

Posted in Style

Monday Morning Must-haves

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My Monday mornings aren’t too different from every other morning.  We work weekends, we take weekdays off sometimes, our schedules are all mussed up – so I guess Monday isn’t really this horrible ‘have-to-get-out-of-bed-and-commute’ kinda day over here.  However, due to a lifetime of conditioning that has led me to believe that Monday mornings are less tolerable than all the other ones, I have a short but important list of things that make my grumps go away on a morning such as this.

Coffee

An obvious must, but worth noting.  A good bean is definitely number one on the priority list and at the moment we are trying this dark italian roast from Kind Coffee.  Clint’s parents recently went on a vacation to Colorado (sigh) and brought a bag back for us as a gift.  We are seriously that easy to buy for – a bag of beans from wherever you end up, please.

We’re not usually italian roast drinkers, but I can absolutely say that Kind has changed our minds.  It’s actually perfect.  In the morning as a pourover (using our AMAZING CoffeeSock)  and a french press in the evening.  It’s gentle and easy to drink, yet has a rich, caramel tone that is, personally, my favorite note.   The best part?  All of Kind Coffee’s beans are fair trade and sustainable grown.  Win/win.

A comforting mug

You know how some people form emotional connections to inanimate objects?  I am one of those people.  Mugs are my thing and when I get attached, that mug goes with me everywhere.  When I moved from Australia, I had to make the hard decision to leave all my babies behind – for fear that they wouldn’t make the trip in one piece and while I was probably right, I still miss my wizard of oz mug and Japanese teacup (which was actually the perfect ‘flat-white’ size).

Recently, my husband and I were sent a wonderful package of handmade pottery from artist Nicholas James Akins of aLionsArt.  My new favorite mug just happened to be amongst the goods (pictured above).  If you love one-of-a-kind pottery and want to fill your house with it, head over to Nick’s Etsy store right now.  I have never encountered such quality work at such affordable prices – the man clearly has a gift and if you don’t hurry, I will have bought everything already.

Yoga

I know everyone preaches ‘movement in the morning’ and honestly, it is the BEST time to get in some exercise.  It’s not possible for everyone (I know some people have grown up jobs and what have you), but I have found a solution that almost anyone can fit in.  Hit youtube, type in ‘Morning Yoga’ or ’10 minute yoga’ or ‘yoga for abs’ or whatever the H you want to focus on/target/workout and you will find thousands of results.  I have tried A TON of them and haven’t been dissatisfied yet.  A 10 minute stretch in the morning will do your body, brain and mood a WORLD of good.  Additionally, if this is the only exercise you get all day – as long as it’s everyday – you’ll definitely feel the difference.  10-2o minutes a day.  Who knew!  Below are some links to my favorite routines:

AM Yoga from Exercise TV  and Morning Yoga with Adriene - these ones are my FAVORITE

PM Yoga Workout with Rainbeau Mars - and yes, you can laugh

Bedtime Yoga with Adriene - I would suggest subscribing to this channel.  Adriene is adorable, her videos are high quality, her workouts are fantastic and doable and for anything you struggle with – there’s probably a tutorial!  Adriene also has numerous topical videos such as yoga for when you’re sick, yoga for depression, lower back pain yoga, Butt and thighs and pretty much anything else you could think of.  Through and through my one stop yoga channel.

Yoga at your desk - Don’t ever give me that ‘but I work too much’ excuse again…

Ps.  Don’t EVER feel disheartened when first starting out your yoga practice.  THAT’S WHY WE CALL IT PRACTICE.  Stretch as far as you are able, keep trying and get back up when you fall down.  It’s not something you will be instantly good at and EVERYONE is tight when they first start, but give it a week and you will begin to see why so many people swear by it.

Pro tip: create a routine for yourself.  Wake up, drink some warm water with lemon (the body absorbs warm water better), do your yoga while the kettle boils and proceed with your coffee ritual – whatever it may be.  Routine does the body good.

I trust you will all take this naturally cranky woman’s sage advice on how to reverse the cranks (I’m kidding, I’m an absolute delight in the morning).  Happy rising, morning people!

Posted in Coffee, Ready Made

Shake it up

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Confession time.

Because of the majority of the content of this blog, I’m sure you are aware that I put a lot of time and effort into keeping myself and my family healthy.  We eat copious amounts of fruits and vegetables, consume heaps of good fats and fermented foods and don’t even allow processed, packaged or sugary foods into the house.

Everyone has a flaw though, right?

Here’s ours.  We work a lot and we work late.  Our schedule is not ‘normal’ or ‘efficient’ and honestly, we could be getting more sleep at a better hour – sleep is the glue that holds our health together and I really should know better.  We work late, we sleep late, we use coffee as a coping mechanism in the morning, afternoon and night.  That is, until we found the salted caramel shake at Sonic.

Yes, I’m sorry to say, but sadly it’s true – I have been indulging a little too much and have been supporting a food chain that represents everything that’s wrong with America’s diet these days.  I’m weak, I’m tired and I gave into the delicious, sugary content of that shake on more than one occasion.  But then, awful things started to happen.  I broke out, I got sluggish, I was waking up with a headache EVERY SINGLE DAY, I was bloated and irritable and just not feeling good.  That’s when my actions really hit me and I realized I couldn’t be so ignorant and had to make a change.

Last week, I said NO MORE and began detoxing.  Which is just a fancy way of saying I drank more water, turmeric tea and ate probiotic foods a lot.  I wake up today without a headache, in a good mood, with clear skin and a conviction to inform you that while the symptoms I described above are icky and undesirable, the reality of what something as simple as a shake or soda a day can lead to is a lot more grim.

First of all – all calories are not the same. They’re not.  You can consume 310 calories in a large Dr Pepper and it will have absolutely no nutritional benefit, will not aid your body in any way and will shut down your immune system for 8 hours or more.  Consume the same amount in fruits and vegetables, you’ll have eaten 3 meals (just for starters) and consumed countless beneficial nutrients and vitamins that equip your body to perform the way it needs to in order to keep you healthy, happy and disease free.

Oh, by the way, don’t think that just because you opt for the calorie free version of your preferred soda that you are safe.  Not only are you probably aiding weight gain by consuming diet soda, you are also killing off brain cells (a reaction caused by caffeine and aspartame) and worsening any other pre-existing conditions you may have.  Don’t believe me – check it out here.

Sugary drinks are the number 1 source of calories in young people’s diets

I cannot be the only one who sees something wrong with this. Your children, teenagers and young adults need to be nourishing themselves, not setting themselves up for a worst case scenario.

Consuming 1 to 2 sugary drinks a day increases the risk of type 2 diabetes by 25%

Couple that with the amount of processed sugar in everything else you eat (trust me, if it comes in a package, it’s probably full of sugar and other killer chemicals),  you’re just pushing that percentage higher.

Americans consume close to 50 billion liters of soda per year

For those of you (like me) without calculator brains, that’s about 57 gallons (216 liters) per person.  Dude.

Every 10 seconds, someone dies due to Diabetes related complications

If you could personally ensure the health and longevity of yourself and your loved ones, wouldn’t you?

This is why I am now making a commitment to never purchase a sugary drink again.  I just can’t do it knowing what I know, after all the study I’ve done.  I implore you to join me, even if it’s your first step on the road to a healthy lifestyle, it’s a huge one!

But don’t worry, I’m not going to make a morbid post without following it up with something fun and delicious, so without further ado, here are my favorite, HEALTHY, shake alternatives! YAY!

Salted Caramel Shake

Sauce:
1 cup of dates (medjool are preferable), pitted
1/2 tsp salt (Himalayan or sea salt)
1 tbsp hot water

Shake:
1 cup of milk/cream of your choice (my favorites are coconut or almond, but a good quality or raw dairy would be amazing, depending on your dietary preferences)
1 frozen banana (optional, replace with ice if you aren’t a banana fan)
1/2 tsp organic vanilla extract (optional)

Place the dates, salt and hot water into a food processor or high powered blender and blitz until the mixture looks smooth and creamy (it will take longer in a food processor, so be patient).  Allow sauce to cool for about 10 minutes and if you resist the urge to eat it all with a spoon, place 3 Tbsp of the sauce into blender with the remaining shake ingredients.  Blend for 20 seconds or until smooth and enjoy!

For something a with a little more edge, you can brew a cup of coffee and either wait until it cools and add it to the shake or freeze it in an ice cube tray for a thicker texture. Oh. My. Coffee.

Peanut butter coffee shake

MY TWO FAVORITE THINGS IN THE WORLD

1 cup of brewed (organic) coffee, cooled
2 frozen bananas
2 cups of coconut cream or a good quality dairy cream
1 tsp organic vanilla extract
1/2 peanut butter (or sub out for another nut butter – almond, sunflower, whatever you like)

Place all ingredients into blender and blitz until smooth.  Serves 3

Pina Colada (Almost)

1 cup pineapple juice, fresh or with no added sugar
1 cup coconut milk
1/2 lime, juice only
1 banana (frozen for a thicker result)
A few cubes of ice

Blend all ingredients together until smooth and drink immediately.

Watermelon & Lime Frappé

2 cups chopped watermelon
1 lime, juice only
1 tsp honey
1/2 cup crushed ice or ice cubes

Place all items into a blender and blitz until smooth, drink cold.

The ‘Who needs Starbucks when you have this frappucino’ Frappuccino

1 1/2 cups of brewed organic coffee, cooled
1/2 cup almond milk
2 Tbsp cacao or cocoa powder
2 organic pitted dates
1 frozen banana
10 cubes of ice

Place all items into a blender and blend well.  Makes 2 servings.

There you have it, just a small collection of my favorite blended drinks.  It’s worth the switch, seriously.  You have NO idea how good your body was designed to feel – give up the crap today!

Sources: Diabetes.org, NationMaster, Mercola.com, Food Babe
Posted in Coffee, DIY

Growing up

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The little one turned four yesterday and I have been a mess about it.  She’s a smashing success of a human, so far (my husband keeps pointing this out in order to try and cheer me up) but I still can’t help but think back to all the baby times.  All the things I miss, all the things I did wrong, every little thing I failed to write down in one of those darned baby books and it’s turned me into a sniffling, teary, sad excuse for a human for the last few days.

I am grateful for every day we’ve had together.  I am grateful for the little person she is and all the independence she is gaining.  I’m proud of her in every way, I’m overwhelmed by her brain and imagination and everything she is capable of and I will cherish every moment with her forever and ever, but for today – I will be a sap.

Meanwhile, she’s in another room playing ‘pull my finger’ with her dad.  That’s my girl.

Posted in Uncategorized

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I am Amylee - Maker, married to a fellow Maker, mama to a mess in a tutu and big time dreamer in small town Oklahoma.  I wish I was stylish enough to have a fashion blog, but I might just write a lot about coffee.

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