How to clean with nothin’ but water

Good (early) morning to you!  The bags are packed, the house is clean & food is prepped.  That means today is travel day!  I’m so excited to head off to sunny San Diego to spend a week learning about nutrition, fighting disease & keeping your body as healthy as possible.  Of course, I will be relaxing and having fun too.  And who could forget the amazing food?!

Today’s post is going to be amazingly short — me with only a few words?  Yes, it is possible.

Clean with water?

Because I like to come home to a clean house, I spent the last few days sprucing things up a bit.  Household chemicals are crazy!  They smell funny, do weird things to your skin and can bother some people’s lungs.  I notice it the most when I clean the shower.   I’d like to tell you about a company that sells natural household cleaners that are environmentally friendly and chemical-free.  I refer to their cloths as magic towels because they have amazing scrubbing power with just water!  Imagine cleaning soap scum off your tub and shower with just water!  My girlfriend is a direct-sales advisor, but you can order directly from her website.  Check out their products and catalog here.  If I could pick just one thing, it would be the dish soap.  Or maybe the stainless steel polishing cloth.  Or was it the heavy-duty chiffonnette?  Oh shoot!  I really like the beauty and face cloths, too.  You can wash your body (and get it clean) with nothing but water.  Get perfectly clean & smooth skin while keeping all of those parabens and perfumes away.

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Wrap Up:

See, I told you it would be quick.  I’ve really got to get out the door and on my way.  I will be attempting to keep you updated from the getaway, but that will depend on my ability to utilize my Nook as a tablet-type internet device.  We will see how it goes.  I practiced at home, but reality may be different.  If it proves too difficult, I will “see” you back here in a week with a re-cap!

So… I’m off!

Toodles 😀

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Summer is here and a new salad recipe!

Happy Monday to you!  I’m a little bit more chipper than usual because this Monday is super special for me.  Ya know why?  Cuz I’m on VACATION!  I was doing the happy dance all weekend long.  I have a very generous vacation benefit at work, and when this break came around, I was definitely in need.  My job is pretty intense at times and the last three weeks have been killer for me.  The alarm clock is turned off and the spa appointments are made.  Today will be spent prepping for my trip to San Diego, tomorrow is packing day and Wednesday I will be flying off to the sunny (I hope) southern region of California!

Welcome, Summer:

With the arrival of Summer on June 21, many people expect warm sunny days & cooler evenings here in the Northwest.  And right on time, we had a summer-like day Saturday with temps in the low 70s.  But, as is typical in these parts, the rain came on Sunday.  “They” always say, if you don’t like the weather in Seattle, just wait five minutes.  We had some pretty good downpours Sunday evening.  I like the sound of summer rain.  For some reason it has a different ring to it than the winter rain.  This morning we headed out for our usual morning 5-mile walk and it was sprinkling.  Hubby looked to me to make the decision whether we should go or not.  I said, “Well, it’s not like it’s cold.” So away we went.  We were about 3/4 mile in when it began to pour cats & dogs!  Needless to say we only put in about 1.75 miles and by the time we got home we were soaked through!  It made for a good laugh.  It’s days like this that I look so forward to retirement, realizing what it feels like to wake up when I want & not worry if the workout goes as expected because there’s more hours in the day.  Life is good. 😀

Weekend Recap:

So what did you do this past weekend?  H³ (Handsome Healthy Hubby) and I took a beautiful hike 4.5 miles up in the hills of the Cascades to an enchanting lake. (And another 4.5 miles back down)  It was a perfect day to spend together laughing & enjoying God’s gifts.  Here are a few pictures that he took to give you an idea of the majestic area in which we live.  I love it here.  Summers are great; I just wish it were a tad bit warmer the rest of the year.

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Click on the pics to get the full-page version

And now about that salad:

So do you know what summer calls for?  Salad!  We eat a lot of salads anyway, but sometimes during the warmer months, I don’t really feel much like turning on the stove or the oven.  And since we eat anything Tex-Mex style, I was inspired by one of those viral recipes that you see on Facebook.  It was so good, Hubby asked for it again on Sunday when I was fresh out of dinner ideas.  We thought of all different variations that could be done with the basic recipe, but here’s what it looked like on the first go ’round:

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It was so delicious.  If you click on the picture, you’ll be taken to the recipe screen.  It’s so easy-peasy. It will take you like 20 minutes to whip it up.  The second day we had it, I pan roasted the corn by heating a pan on high and tossing in the frozen corn kernels and cooking until a little brown.  If you do that, you’ll want to let the corn cool down before mixing it with the other ingredients.  This technique makes the corn a little sweeter.   Someone (guess who?) wanted to call this one CATS  (Corn, Avocado, Tomato Salad) but I think I’ll go with Summer Avocado Corn Salad.

 I’m glad that we took advantage of the nice weather on Saturday and dined al fresco.  For a nice refreshing drink, a little different than plain ol’ water, I served up a glass of cucumber water.  It’s so easy… clean your cucumber really well, slice & add it to your ice-cold water!

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I was happy to be able to use some of the new salad greens from my container gardens on the deck.  They are getting so big.  Even the kale is about ready to start cutting a leaf or two.  I’m sure they’ll be perfect when I’m gone.  Hopefully, Healthy Hubby (H²) will utilize all the greens!

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Have you noticed the love of my life has many names?  There’s Handsome Healthy Hubby (H³).  And Healthy Hubby (H²).  And Hubby.  It really is only one guy, trust me.  He’s handsome as can be.  He’s really healthy.  And he’s my husband, the one & only!  For nearly 22 years, he’s put up with me, and he supports me in my nutritional weirdness.  He even gives me feedback on the recipes I make, which means a lot.  Plus he shares his beautiful photography with me so I can in turn share it with you.  Isn’t he great?  If ever you see a photo you’d like to hang on your wall, let me know.  The possibilities are endless.  My favorites are the gallery-wrapped canvas.

Wrap Up:

Since I’ll be out of town for a week or so, and I have no desire to take a computer with me, I have no idea what my ability will be to post on my blog after Wednesday.  I don’t have an iAnything and all I’ve got is a Dumbphone, so I’ll be trying to keep you updated on my Fuhrman Health Getaway using my Nook and a micro SD card in my camera.  Wish me luck and pray for WiFi that’s easy to access at the resort.  I will do the best I can.

Just so you don’t miss a post if I am able to get one on here, click the “follow” button at the top of the page and you’ll get an automatic email when it goes through.  Have a great week & I will be in touch!  Toodles!

Friday Fun Fact #8

TGIF! And helllllllo, Vacation!  Yes. After today I am on vacation for two weeks.  I’ve been talking about it for what seems like years now, but I really think it’s only months, but Wednesday I’m flying off for beautiful San Diego to attend the Fuhrman Health Getaway.  Are you tired of hearing about it?  Well, I’m just so darned excited to go I can hardly stand myself.  I am so grateful to H³ (Handsome Healthy Hubby) for encouraging me to go and actually registering me.  I was feeling a little selfish about spending a week away at a luxury resort and eating the healthiest food while leaving him at home.  See, he’s healthy and handsome and all that too, but he’s just not crazy into this eating and learning like I am.  Oh, sure he makes sure what goes into his body is good for you & he exercises.  He’s just not nuts like me!  (Plus he has food allergies which make it difficult)

Today is not just Friday, but it is also the first day of summer!  Can you believe it?  Yeah, I think the high today will be about 66°.  Get excited!

Friday Fun Fact:

So Wednesday I posted a recipe for blueberry muffins.  If you missed that post, you can read it here.  Or if you just want the recipe, you can get it by clicking here.  Tis the season for berries in the Northwest.  We love our sweet, luscious berries.  Blueberries won’t be ready until August and this year I’ll be sure to pick more than 20 lbs.  Last year, they were gone by January!  Right now is strawberry season and we’ve been eating our share, but the blueberry seems to be making a continual return to my shopping cart.  Those muffins were delish!

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So what is so great about berries besides the fact that they are tasty?  They are so good for you.  Berries are the second in Dr. Fuhrman’s G-BOMBS (Greens, Beans, Onions, Mushrooms, BERRIES & Seeds).  Berries are full of fiber and phytochemicals and because they are low in calories they score the highest ANDI score of all fruits.  The deep blue/purple coloration of berries are because of flavonoid antioxidant molecules called anthocyanins.  In addition to their antioxidant properties, flavonoids have been associated with a significant risk reduction for coronary heart disease (up to 45%).  Now, isn’t that reason enough to toss a handful or two on your oatmeal in the morning?

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Studies show that by consuming just one to three servings a week you can reduce your risk for coronary heart disease and high blood pressure.  Also in similar studies, berry phytochemicals have helped regulate blood glucose levels as well as blood pressure.  In addition to keeping your ticker healthy, berries are great and helping to prevent cancer and give us protection against diabetes and dementia.  All berries provide macro nutrients, but blueberries in particular are the only food so far that has been shown to not just prevent but actually reverse abnormal physical and mental decline, including coordination and balance, in aged animals. (People are animals, right?)  You can read more about blueberries here.  Imagine.  If those studies were done with people eating one to three servings a week think what we could do to protect ourselves against disease if we ate berries every day!

Disclaimer:

Just remember… none of the information in this blog is intended to be medical advice and is purely the result of my own research.  You may find different information to support another view.  The opinions expressed are my own.  You are advised to seek the advice of a licensed medical professional for your particular needs relating to diet and exercise.

Weekly WrapUp:

Well, there you have it, folks.  I hope you’ll come back and see me on Monday.  I’ll have a new post and probably a recipe!  I hope you have a terrific weekend and are able to relax a little bit.  I’m hoping to get a hike in.  I’m a huge procrastinator, so I can always pack later, right?

Muffins and Mumblings

Hello there!  Happy Hump Day.  Today’s post is going to be quick and simple.  I’ve got a muffin recipe for you and I’ll get to that in a minute.  I’m finally feeling back to my old self after my little icky-ness from last week.  I’m hoping to never relive that experience again!  So now I’m moving on, eating the best that I have in a while and keeping in the back of my mind that perhaps my straying off and joining my good friend Sugar for a couple-of-week escapade was the reason for my illness.  I’m not sure that’s a fact, but if I have that idea, maybe it will keep me more on track.  So far I’ve been 100% Nutritarian and feel awesome!  It takes a bit to get things back to normal and as normal as I can be, I think I’m there.

Unnecessary Antibiotics:

During my visit to Urgent Care last week, the doctor gave me a prescription for Cipro which is one of the strongest antibiotics you can take.  It was urged that I take it “just in case” I have an infection somewhere.  I am thankful that I declined to have it filled.  There was no infection found.  As a matter of fact, the one thing that they did note was a high level of lactobacillus, which is a probiotic.  Maybe that’s because I take probiotics to keep a healthy gut.  (apparently it failed me for a day or two!)  Unnecessary use of antibiotics is thought by some scientists to be leading to our country’s high occurrence of deadly illnesses.  I just saw a blurb on the news this morning that if doctors and patients can limit the use of unneeded medications, we could save over $213 billion in our country’s healthcare plan.  I will have to do more reading into that to see exactly what is meant, but that’s a lot of money.

Blueberry Muffins galore:

You know, I’m not a creative foodie.  I steal borrow a lot of recipes from other people and then tweak them as my own.  When I do replicate a recipe, I try to remember to give that person credit.  That’s what I’m doing here.  I subscribe to Helyn Dunn’s blog, Helyn’s Healthy Kitchen.  She is a great writer and has a keen sense of good, healthy food.  She’s also a nutritarian and I think you’ll find her recipes to be very good.  I enjoy a baked item once in a while and since I’ve been eating healthy, that’s one of the things I miss the most.  Blueberry muffins are Healthy Hubby’s favorite, so when I found Helyn’s recipe, I was so excited.  I used her recipe here to go off of, but made my own adjustments for the ingredients I had at home.  Helyn’s recipe calls for oat flour, brown rice flour, tapioca flour, etc.  I had a gluten-free baking mix on hand so that’s what I used.  I don’t think it changed much of the texture, the moistness or the flavor.  So you can click on the picture for my recipe or for the real one, linked and referenced with Helyn’s permission, just click here.  I should note that these muffins are gluten free and vegan (and tasty!).

IMG_1274I also made a bowl of vegan cream cheese to top them with, just as Helyn suggested and although you have to plan ahead for the vegan cream cheese (like almost 2 days), it is totally worth it!

I’ve also created a banana muffin recipe that I’ve got to tweak just a little bit before I post the recipe, but until then, indulge in the blueberry ones.  Don’t forget the napkin!

Conclusion:

So there you have it!  Check back on Friday for a Fun Fact.  That’s where I share some little tidbit of useful knowledge from the nutrition world.  Shoot… sometimes I even learn something myself!

A new week!

My mom used to say the road to hell was paved with good intentions.  Well, I hope I don’t end up in the burning fires of the land below, but I did have good intentions.  I had no blog post on Friday because I was experiencing technical difficulties.  Not necessarily the type of technical difficulties you would commonly think of, but I was met with some challenges.  Let’s just say that the end of last week was not so good.   To save you the gory details, you will understand when I say I experienced flu-like symptoms on Thursday and spent Friday morning and part of the afternoon getting checked out and hydrated.  I’m feeling much better today and I am confident that my superb eating helped me bounce back so quickly.

On to the fun stuff:

How was your weekend?  I spent Saturday engaged in some previous commitments at my church, though what I really wanted to do was have one more day to relax at home and maybe spend some time in the yard.  The weather is perfect this time of year for being outside.  It’s not too hot and it stays relatively warm into the evening so you don’t have to stop your project at dinnertime.  Check out my veggies.  Of course, the lettuce is going to be at it’s peak about the time I’m heading off to San Diego for the Health Getaway.  I hope Healthy Hubby is hungry for salad every day!  😀

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Kale… my favorite!

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Box o’ Lettuce

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Herbs & More Lettuce

I had also taken a picture of my strawberry plants, but I figured there was no point putting that picture here as the squirrels are quicker than I am in getting to the berries.  This is the first year I’ve had them disappear so quickly.  I guess I will stick with locally grown ones that are big, juicy and absolutely delectable!

IMG_1262Look at those yummy guys!  H³ and I ate a half a flat in just three days.  Oh, how I love Washington grown berries.  We literally just eat them like the photo shows (minus the green tops, of course).

Father’s Day:

And what Father’s Day would be complete without good ol’ Pops?  I took this picture to send off to Alex so he’d have it while he’s away, but I’ll share with you too.  My dad will be 80 this year and he is going strong.  I think he’s like the Energizer Bunny.  Or maybe more like the $6 million man.  He gets worn out and they just replace the broken parts with new ones.  We had dinner with my dad and his wife.  They are not accustomed to our way of eating and I’m thinking that the fact that they didn’t have seconds of my veggie kabobs, rice and baked beans had nothing to do with the fact that they didn’t like them, but more because they have smaller appetites!  They sure loved my Grinning Gorillas Ice Dream.  They have a Ninja blender, so I showed them how easy it is to make frozen concoctions (besides Margaritas)!

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And there’s this guy too!

IMG_1268He’s lounging in his new reclining chair on the deck talking to who else, but his favorite soldier!  Alex called and made Father’s Day complete.  It’s so nice to hear his voice and get a little bit of an idea of what he’s doing.  If everything goes according to plan, he will be graduating Friday.  He will have a day or two off and then his Advanced Training begins Monday.  Then it’s just ten more weeks until his final graduation and we will get to see him.  I am so proud of that kid!

When I got to talk to him, he shared how he has come to realize how important healthy eating is.  He is considering furthering his education while in the Army and he’s thinking of a degree in fitness and nutrition.  One of the things he said is that it’s one thing to eat a cheeseburger and sit in an office or on the couch watching TV, but to work hard all day long and expend the amount of energy that he does, he needs healthy, light foods with lots of nutrients.  He did admit that most of his veggies are cooked because it takes less time to eat them than it does raw and they are limited on time.  Beans are served at every meal and he tries to eat a serving each day to keep up his protein.  He did confess to one morning going to breakfast after the day prior having a rather large calorie deficit and thinking fruit and a healthy breakfast was in order, but somehow found his plate filled with eggs, bacon, hashbrowns and the works.  He said it tasted good, but wasn’t what he needed.  Perhaps my nagging gentle educating has found a place within his mind.

Conclusion:

All in all it was a great weekend of  relaxation, reconnecting, and healing — both spirit and body.  Come back on Wednesday because I’m going to share with you a new muffin recipe that I think you’ll flip for!

I’m getting excited about a Health Getaway!

Hello, all!
My apologies for this post being so so late.  Work has been kicking my rear end the last couple of weeks and basically sucking all of my imagination from me to the point I have no idea what to blog about.  Can you imagine?  Me without words?  That may be a first!  Those of you who know me would understand that I rarely am quiet.

So get on with it:

I guess if I’m running behind on my post, I ought to just get to it, right?  Yes!  So two weeks from today I’ll be heading off to San Diego to attend the Dr. Fuhrman Health Getaway.  I’ve been talking about it now since about January and I’m so excited.  I can hardly wait.  I’ve been busy making my last-minute plans… you know — hair cut, spa day, pedicure, etc.  A girl’s gotta look good to go to a place so beautiful as San Diego.  I’ve never been there and I’m looking forward to not only spending time with like-minded people, but also walking the (warm) beach, learning new things, seeing some sights and, oh, eating.  Yeah.  That’s right.  Eating!  It’s one of my favorite things to do.  Some may even say I obsess over food.  Nahhh, really?  Take a look at what we’ll be doing at the getaway here.  It looks like we’ve got a full agenda each day, but I think I’ll have time to relax by the pool, maybe do some kayaking at the resort, and perhaps take a nap or three.  :-D

What else is new?:

So I’ve been taking a little break from my crazy-hard workouts.  The weather has been so nice in the morning that Handsome Healthy Hubby and I have been going for long walks.  Yes, I said long.  We’ve been putting in almost five miles and we do that in just about an hour.  This is no stroll, I tell you!

The thing I’ve been neglecting, however is my weight training.  It has literally gone out the window.  We all know that weight training is important for muscle strength as well as keeping our bones healthy, and I feel so guilty for not putting in the time with my friendly weights.  I literally feel my muscles shrinking as the days go on.  So my slacking is coming to a close.  It’s easier for me to start a new “habit” or routine on a new week.  Monday will take me back to the gym.  I will still walk, though, if the weather is so nice that I can’t bear to go to the gym.  Hmmm.  I sound as though I’m pre-excusing already and I haven’t even gotten to sunny days yet.  We will see what next week brings.

Your ideas:

You know what would help me keep my blog moving over the next couple of weeks?  YOU!  How about you post some things you’d like to hear about and I’ll see about taking your ideas to the next level.  You can ask me a question about a recipe or how to get started eating Nutritarian Style.  Maybe you have a question about a certain food or their nutritional values.  Are you new to exercise and want some ideas on how to ease into it or maybe you’re looking for some new hiking places in the Northwest.  You name it and I’ll consider it.  I really appreciate the readers that I have, so I think you should have a say in this too.  If you’ve got a question, that means someone else does to.  So post a comment, and we’ll see where that takes us.

I will wrap up with a beautiful picture that H³ (Handsome Healthy Hubby) took and ask you to come back on Friday where I’ll share what?  Yep, a Friday Fun Fact!

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Monday Mumbling & Yummy Green Smoothie Recipe

It was an awesome weekend filled with grad parties, socializing, enjoying the sun & spending time with my Handsome Healthy Hubby.  I hope you were able to find time to do what you enjoy the most.

Green Smoothie:

Let’s start right off with a new recipe.  You all know how much I love my chai tea.  I’ve given up on the commercially prepared ones, however and make my own at home with an herbal concoction.  I usually do that in the fall / winter time because the flavors scream out to me the season of cooler weather and the holidays.  But I recently found a recipe for a chai smoothie and it gave me inspiration for a GREEN chai smoothie.  I mean, what the heck.  Spinach or other greens aren’t really that noticeable in flavor, so why not add it in?  I’ve also simplified the recipe a bit to make it quick and easy.

You know what I love about green smoothies?  It’s easy to get a great helping of greens in the morning, they jump start my day, they’re filling and satisfying AND I swear they help my concentration.  I notice at work on the days I start off with a green smoothie of any flavor, I perform better at my job.  I can concentrate much better and I am more relaxed and not as anxious about my day.  That right there is a reason to have one each day.

So click on the picture below to be taken to the recipe.

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What else I did this weekend:

Handsome Healthy Hubby and I have been getting some hiking in.  It is such a good way to get a ton of exercise, spend time together and appreciate God’s gifts to us.  I love being in nature.  It never ceases to amaze me how beautiful our world is and how we tend to take it for granted it.  It’s nice to get out and put myself in the middle of it all and take it all in.  This weekend our hike took us to an amazing waterfall.  It was about three and a half miles in on the trail that we found them.  But… you couldn’t see them from the normal trail.  You had to scramble up the hillside (on a “trail”) to get a full view of the falls.  And it was so worth it.  Of course, I was scared to death going up and coming down was even worse.  I figured for some reason it was safer to traverse the terrain on my derriere.  I’m glad there was no one else around.  In any event, we got in a little over seven miles on Sunday and we even have pictures to prove it.  Take a look-see.

jan at fallsskookum falls hike like phoebeThis one you have to understand.  I was goofing around as Hubby teases me when I cross over tricky parts and we have termed it “hike like Phoebe.”  This was a posed picture just for the camera!  If you don’t know what “Run like Phoebe” looks like, you can check out a video right here.

Wrap Up:

So there you have it… a tasty new green smoothie recipe and some photos to entertain you. I wish you happy week & I’ll “see” you back here on Wednesday where I have no idea what I’ll be mumbling about then. 🙂