Friday, June 24, 2011

Confessions of an Afternoon Sweet Tooth

Some days I'm so strong, others I am not. Today is the latter.

I sit here today with dark chocolate chips on my breath and I realize that there are so many of you reading this that "suffer" from my same habit.

It's after lunch. I know I ate enough - a good balance of protein, fruit or veggie, and a complex starch - but my taste buds think something is missing that can only be satisfied by something sweet.

These are the strategies that I usually take to avoid a handful of delicious, dark chocolate chips {and extra poundage if the habit continues}...

* Brush my teeth.
* Pop in some gum.
* Have hot tea {for some reason cold doesn't cut it for me} or sparkling water with squeeze of citrus
* Eat a pickle. 
* Get involved with the kids outside of the house after lunch {walk, painting, etc.}
* Paint your fingernails {I never paint mine but this is a great tactic to keep you from munching!}
* Exercise
* Refer to the journal {I don't keep a food journal but for those working to improve their eating habits, journaling is a proven way to improve}
* Accountability: call/text someone and tell them I'm about to give in
* Store temptations way out of sight and in hard to reach place:
     ~ tie rubber bands around them; 
     ~ bury them in the freezer or the back of the shelf; 
     ~ put them next to your bathing suit;
     ~ put them near a picture of you the way you don't want to look;
     ~ put them next to a full-length mirror.
* Eat a small amount and then throw the rest away, immediately.
* Don't buy it in the first place! {Although it's easy to turn just about anything into dessert}
* Put on something you want to fit into comfortably.
* If I just have to have it, I tell my spouse so that he holds me accountable for not having dessert that night. {Who says you can only have dessert at night?}

What's your tactic for avoiding the afternoon sweet tooth attack???

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

What Happened to That Garden?

{What Happened to That Garden?}

Some of you may recall when my son and I had a wonderful gardening experience and planted an assortment of seeds along our side yard in hopes of tiding me over for my dream raised bed. Well, we watered, we "weeded", we waited, we watched... and nothing grew.

Then one day I went out to water the garden and I found our pup, Ellie, contently laying on our garden.

You can even see the little carrots and lettuce alongside her.
So that's why nothing came of our sweet mommy-son vegetable garden, but I do have some good news!
On Mother's Day, my dear husband {probably sick of all of my not-so-subtle hinting nagging for a raised bed} made me this huge raised bed! 

Now, to fill it with dirt. Dirt's not cheap! Stay tuned...

P.S. I just had to take a picture of this jewelry bag before I shipping it out. Isn't it just so cute? Each jewelry order gets one! {Hint, Hint}

Until next time...

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Happy Father's Day, Love

I'm married to a guy that lets me sleep in as late as possible, he cooks my kids breakfasts with veggies, he's in incredible shape, he makes me feel loved, his smiles still makes me melt, he cherishes our kids, he's reliable and inspiring, his laugh is invigorating, and he's all the kids want/need him to be. I'm so thankful my children have my husband to love them, adore them and inspire them to be godly children.

I love you, Honey.

P.S. Here's a little song my kidlets did for their sweet daddy today.

"We have a big strong daddy, he works out every day;
and when he comes home from his run we play, play, play, play, play.

"He makes us a great breakfast, and sometimes gets us dressed;
and then he goes off to his work and does his very best.

"Daddy, daddy, daddy, we love daddy;
daddy, daddy, daddy, we love daddy;

"We love to play with daddy; we love to play "Cha-Ka";
we hike and bike and fly a kite, and sometimes we just draw.

"We love our special daddy; we always feel his love.
He tucks us in and makes us grin, and prays to God above.

"Daddy, daddy, daddy, we love daddy;
daddy, daddy, daddy, we love daddy.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Neck Love + Nutrition: Where to Start?

{Neck Love}
I finally got in the sterling silver circles I wanted for my delicate, everyday necklaces. Take a look at Cookie+Curly's site and let me know what you think. Any color/stone requests?

Aquamarine in Sterling Silver Circle Necklace

Moonstone in Sterling Silver Circle Necklace
I'll be adding some earrings and more necklaces over the next couple of days/weeks but would love to hear if you're wanting something in particular. And, of course, any feedback.

{Where to Start}

I recently got an email from someone asking where to start with her children's nutrition. She has a 2-year old, a 4-year old, and one due TODAY! Before she introduces another baby to the family, at which point she feels she surely won't have the energy for optimizing her other children's nutrition for a while, she wanted a place to start.

My opinion? Limit processed sugars. That is, try to omit it.

What does that mean?

* Read labels!
* Don't eat anything with any of these words as the first 3 ingredients {or at all}: "sugar", "brown rice syrup", "agave nectar", "high-fructose corn syrup" {we know that one already}, "raw sugar", "maple syrup", more listed here. {Other rules for Sports Nutrition.}
* Start by looking at what your child {or you!} eat most regularly and adjust eating habits there. "Energy bars" and snack foods are big sugar-sources for many. And, yup... Desserts.
* Try the "health foods" section of your grocery store or try a new store altogether. But still ready labels as "sugar" can look really fancy and harmless on some "organic", "natural" foods. 
* You'll be surprised at all the yummy alternatives out there!
* Talk to your kids {or remind yourself - every day} about the importance of daily food choices. Give them options. PRAISE good food choices.
* One poor food choice can have a trickle-down effect and sabotage your day. Be a conscious eater.
* If omitting is too hard, aim for 3 days a week with a goal of every day. Add a day every week or two.

Does anyone have any personal suggestions for people with this struggle?

Monday, June 6, 2011

Home-Schooling... Am I Nuts?!

I had the pleasure of spending time today with a good friend, Lindsey Cheney who owns The Pleated Poppy. We both have multiple kids, a passion for our businesses, extremely understanding husbands, sleep-deprivation, and a life that seems very overwhelming. It was great to trade strategies and commiserate a bit. :)

One of the main things standing out in my mind right now was her idea to set aside specific time to check email, Twitter {follow her here}, blogs, Facebook {are you following C+C yet?} etc. and then keep it out of your head the rest of the time.
I've been struggling with feeling the "need" to keep my finger on the pulse of my business, all the while being a stay-at-home-mom raising two little ones who TRULY need my attention.

What's your philosophy? How do you balance it all?

Hearing Lindsey's {ideal} approach {it's a work in progress} inspired me to do the same. We'll see how it goes. Thank you, Lindsey, for the fun walk and chatting today.


Ironically, as Lindsey and I spent much of our time talking about business and family and how hard it is to balance just those two things, we were also talking home-schooling as she will be home-schooling her three kids next year.

San Luis Obispo has a wonderful option for part-time home-schooling, part-time in-school for kids pre-K to 12th grade. The school is called San Luis Obispo Classical Academy or "SLOCA" for short. 

I'm debating. It's an incredible lifestyle change and one I truly did not think I would consider, but with many of the government's mandates and the alternatives available now, I'm very tempted.

What do you think? Do you home-school? Am I nuts?! I've got at least a year to figure it all out. I'd appreciate your help!

Friday, June 3, 2011

Guess What's For Dinner Tonight?

First, I feel so neglectful. I'm sorry I haven't been posting much lately - I've been loaded up with orders, my little ones, an occasional much-needed date night, and life. That said, I have also been working on new concepts and I'm excited to share them with you soon!

{What's For Dinner Tonight?}

Okay, do you know what you're having for dinner tonight? This recipe is incredibly easy {basically: do you know how to boil water?} and it's my go-to for dinners when we are bringing a meal to someone.

Ground Turkey & Pasta Bake

1. Preheat oven to 350F.
2. Cook pasta {anything but spaghetti-style} according to directions.
3. Saute 1 lb. lean ground turkey (or beef) in saute pan.
4. Saute or microwave 10 oz {or more!} of spinach.
5. Toss pasta, ground turkey, spinach {plus any other cooked veggies you want} in a large pyrex with about 1.5 bottles of marinara sauce and about 2c shredded, low-moisture/part-skim cheese.

6. Optional: Sprinkle a little more cheese on top.
7. Bake 15-25 minutes until cheese melted on top and heated through.
8. Share!

{Autumn Update}

We got to bring dinner to Autumn's family this week and I'm happy to report she's doing wonderfully, relatively speaking. She even has a little patch of hair she dyed orange - the symbolic color of kidney cancer. She's precious. 

She did have a fever last night which was very concerning for her parents. Please continue to keep her in your prayers. 

Thank you for your past support for her cause. You can read more about her here.