Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Why You should be a Tea Drinker

Can I just talk about how much I love tea for a moment?? Because seriously, it's the best thing in the world as far as beverages go!

Why you ask?

1. ) It's always good for you in one way or another.

2.) It comes in soooo many different flavors, each with there own health benefits.

3.) It comes in a variety of colors and smells delicious.

4.) It's good hot or cold.

5.) Often you don't even have to add sweetener to enjoy it.

6.)But if you want to add things, the list is endless of what you can add!

So maybe it's because I'm a bit of a book nerd. (Really I love nothing more than sitting down in a quiet place in front of a fire on a cold winter day with a cup of tea and my favorite book. <3) But! Tea is fantastic for all kinds of people.

And it is especially fantastic for when you are on a juice cleanse!
So long as you don't add sugar and there is no caffeine. I like to stick with green and herbal teas for now.

Told you was a book nerd. ;)

One of my favorite brands is called Tazo, which I find at Wal-mart. Most of their tea's have a nice strong flavor which I prefer when I'm juicing. Passion and Wild Sweet Orange are two of my favorites!
I started drinking this tea when I was in Colorado last fall and I haven't stopped since.

    I often drink tea at night, especially when it's cold out. It helps get water in my system when I don't want to drink cold water. It keeps my stomach full of water since I try not to eat after 7 in the afternoon. Sipping on some tea has been a fantastic way to help me change my habits. 

I got this assortment of teas for Christmas from my parents. I love how much variety there is. I'm always mixing my own concoctions to see which I like best. And occasionally adding some fruit juice is a good way to make it taste even better!

So if you are not a tea drinker, I suggest you become one. ;)

More on tea will be coming soon, also in the form of an e-book. ;)

Thanks for reading! 

Monday, February 9, 2015

"Oops, I wasn't Supposed to Eat That.."

 Today is Monday. It was a rough weekend. And I won't lie, I made a few mistakes on my juice fast.

 However! All is still well. Let's go over the basics and I'll be completely honest with you.

 Firstly I made the decision to introduce some actual veggies and fruits into my diet since I am half way through and it is suggested so that you don't lack fiber while fasting.
   That was going well. But that, piled on top of me being so busy and not taking enough time to think about what my meal plans would be and making them up on the spot instead... lead to some cheating over the weekend. 

  I am not proud, but I want to be honest. Another vice is that I have been craving coconut like crazy! And then I discovered some shredded coconut in the depths of our refrigerator, a recipe for coconut macaroons on Pinterest with only two ingredients and boom! I was done.
  I also needed to try the recipe for something that's happening this weekend and they would have been "healthy" had the coconut not been pre-sweetened and I not been on a juice cleanse. But they weren't really. All in all, too much sugar, too much giving in. blah.

   They were delicious, but not worth it. After all I can always eat the actual healthy version when I'm done and not be set back by it!

 I also discovered that it is very bad to have dinner ( especially dinner you can't eat ) sitting out on the stove all evening before anyone bothers putting it up .

** Note to self : If no one puts the food away, put it away yourself!

 Oh and water. Do not forget to drink lots of water. I've also been neglecting this because of a busy schedule. Water doesn't replace nutrition by any means. But you need a lot more water than you might think. And often it's what your body is craving...not food.

 All that said, I woke up today having put back on two pounds. :\
 Not a huge amount, but I would rather be declining than increasing.

 I remember saying to myself at the beginning that everything which goes into my body was chosen by me. So it comes down to the little decisions.. like right when you walk by the stove and see this wonderful looking strawberry cake your sister just made. You have to ask yourself, 
 "Who has more will power? Me or the cake?" And then discover that it's you, and keep walking. Leaving that cake in the corner on it's own. ( It'll be eaten before long by someone else anyway. )

So, what to do now? I'm glad you asked, here's how I handle these little stumbles on the road to a healthy lifestyle and body weight :

1.) Remember that you are not only eating live foods that are good for you, you are forming better habits than you had before.
   And diverging back to the same way you used to eat ( i.e. whatever looks good, whenever you feel like it ) will only leave you dissatisfied with yourself for your decision and with the results.

2.) Have some accountability.

   Whether it be a person, a journal or something else. For me it's my journal which I started at the beginning of this process, and you all! As a result of my bad habits coming back I haven't been writing in my journal as often because I had nothing good to report. So when I sit down and write it helps me re-evaluate where I am and what I need to do from here.
 Also, after this weekend I decided to write down everything I eat or drink on a daily basis, just for a few days until I'm nice and stable in my routine again.

3.) Talk it out.

  Or maybe you could think it out.. I am a verbal processor, I need to think and talk through things with people I trust so that I can sort out what to do next. It's like sorting out a puzzle in my head, putting every piece back in it's place so I can see the picture clearly. You may or may not be like this. But find out what helps you to re-set your sights and get that done!

4.) Find some inspiration.

  What inspired you to start in the first place? What was your goal at the beginning? How far have you come? Realize that you actually can do it!
  And then keep this inspiration around, ( a picture, quote, lots of fresh fruit etc. ) don't forget why you are doing what you're doing. For me it's because I want to be a healthy person, in habits, mind, body etc. And eating cleanly is an excellent way to begin this process.

5.) And last but probably most importantly....
Do. Not. Give. Up!

  Just because you falter does not mean you're failing. It happens to everyone honestly. Failing would be giving up and not trying anymore. Part of success is learning how to work through the times when you definitely messed up, picking up the pieces and continuing to believe in yourself.

  So there's my nugget for the day. I hope it was helpful. Thanks for reading and remember that this really is something you can achieve. ;)

                                                                       Until tomorrow,

P.S. - I'm considering writing a short e-book on this topic. Would anyone be interested in that?

Saturday, February 7, 2015

Recipes On the Go!

  For today's post I thought I'd share with you a few "on the go" ideas I put to good use yesterday.

 I spent the day out with my brother and sister-in-law shopping around from town to town and had no time to juice. So I prepared the night before. And here's how..

Firstly, I removed a bag of pineapple pulp from the freezer to thaw over night and then grabbed it before jumping in the van. It was sweet, full of fiber and perfect for an "on the go" breakfast. I also had some sweet orange tea to compliment the pineapple. It was a good breakfast. ;)

                                                                              My nephew. He was not ready to be awake yet!

                                                                                                        Detox Water

I try and make sure I drink nearly 3 liters of water a day, or pretty close to that. But sometimes I get a little water logged. And even though I love water, it also tastes the same every time you drink it. ;)
Flavored water from the store isn't really an option because I don't want to risk it having some kind of sugar in it. So this is my variation of detox water!

Normally a detox water would have things like cucumber, mint, and some sort of fruit involved. I love making those kinds. But when I want a sweet treat but don't want to drink sugary beverages I resort to this!

All you need is :
About 1\4 cup of fresh fruit to 1 liter of water.

I like to use peaches, strawberries, pineapples and mangoes.

Add the fruit and the water together and chill in the fridge overnight. That way the fruit has plenty of time to let the juices seep into your water. you can remove the fruit after it has chilled and strain it to remove the pulp. ( I like to leave mine in. )

Then just grab it in the morning and go. It's as simple as that!

Since I've been on a juice fast for over a month I sometimes like to throw a little fiber into my diet. Not having enough fiber is the number one concern when it comes to long term juice fasting. So I make sure to eat actual fruits and veggies occasionally because it's been over thirty days. If I were doing one for a shorter time I probably wouldn't worry about it.
But since mine is longer, here are some great ways to get that fiber in your belly without having to carry around a ton of fruits and veggies with you every where you go.

Juice Pulp Crackers

This recipe also helps you use up all that saved up juice pulp in your freezer.

First you'll need about two heaping cups of juice pulp.

Add to this about 1/2 cup of ground flax seed.

And any seasoning you think would work well.
I used the juice pulp from my hot juice so it contained Carrots, Tomato, Green Bell Pepper and Jalapeno. So I used 1 tbs of Coriander and 1/2 tbs of  Curry Powder as well as a dash of Black Pepper.

Keep in mind that they will not taste salty unless you use salt. I didn't because salt is not a part of my diet right now. But if you were to add salt I would recommend only using about 1 tsp of finely ground sea salt.
Some also add 1/2 cup of sunflower seeds or oats. Use your own creativity to make them taste good!

Also consider adding 1/4 -1/2 cup of water. I didn't add any water but mine didn't need it at all. If  your mixture isn't spreadable then you can add some water. Use your judgement. ;)

     Mix well. You can mix in a food processor if you don't like pulp and prefer finer crackers.
       Then spread onto some wax paper inside a long pan or baking sheet. Spread the mixture as thinly as you want the crackers to be. The thicker the spread the longer it will take to cook.
 I do not have a dehydrator so I do mine in the oven by setting the temp. on 325 and propping the door of the oven open just a bit. Cook them for 30-45 minutes. Keeping an eye on them after thirty.When they get crispy around the edges there probably done.

                            And that's all! Slice up into pieces and seal in an air tight container. Keep in mind that they will mildew if they get wet and need to be eaten relatively soon after you make them.

                                                                                                    Lettuce Wraps

  Lettuce wraps are another fantastic way to eat healthy on the go. You can add in whatever you like but since I'm on a juice fast and just need fiber, this is what I did. 

Spread out your lettuce.

This is a mixture which I created for soup when we had a bunch of sick people in the house.
It's been frozen and waiting for an appropriate time to be used. ;)

After this spread I  just sliced up a tomato and added a fourth of it to each wrap. Then sprinkled on some Basil.

Roll it up, stick a few tooth picks in and seal it in an air tight container.

I prepared all these things the night before ( as well as some juice ) and put them to good use the next day when I had absolutely no time to juice.

It was a full day and I didn't cheat once while we were out. #success ;)

                                                                         The sunset was absolutely gorgeous by the way. <3

Thursday, February 5, 2015

More Recipes...

  Thursday afternoon and juicing is on track and going well. My tomatoes are about half way gone, so lasting just as long as I needed them to and I've redone my calendar for the month of February. Which helps keep me on track. ;)

 Here's a few recipes that I've used lately which are some of my favorites.

First off the list is this my recipe for "Glowing Skin" juice. All you need are the ingredients you see right here.
2 Large Apples. ( Granny Smith )
6 Large Carrots ( Washed Well )
And a dash or 1/4 an inch of Ginger.

Juice everything together and mix well.

This juice tastes very much like carrots, so if you don't like carrots feel free to throw in an orange or two to counter act the taste.

Ginger and carrots are excellent for your skin so you can't really go wrong with this recipe.
And I think it tastes pretty fantastic!

Remember to wash all of your vegtables well. Especially if you get them from a market. These carrots came from Publix, where I found a 25 lb bag of whole, organic carrots for only $17!! And I've heard that some have them for more like $15. These have lasted me for several weeks and I still have just under half a bag full left.

Another of my favorites is this next one, which can be very hot! I like to use hot peppers in my juice sometimes because it gets away from only tasting sweet things from the fruit or tasting greens from the green juice. It adds variety.

1/2 Green Bell Pepper
1 Large Red Navel Orange
1 Jalapeno Pepper
6 Large Carrots
2 Large Tomatoes

Those are what's left of my tomatoes from the market the other day. I use so many of them!

Juice everything together and mix well.

                 Sometimes I like to juice everything for one day, in the morning and then store it in a mason jar in the refrigerator to use later. This way I don't spend all day juicing and there's only one clean up session.

 Speaking of clean up...

I have found that occasionally I need to take the pieces of my juicer that need to be washed and soak them in hot, soapy water. Especially when I juice a lot of carrots, they tend to stain things orange. :\

I just leave it in for a few hours and then rinse it well.

    So even though I'm on a juice cleanse, I still love baking! And although I can't eat what I bake, I still enjoy it. Mixing a variety of ingredients together to make dough, setting it just right in the oven, and then the wonderful smell that fills the house when there close to done. And don't they just look lovely?

Monday, February 2, 2015

The Importance of "Me Time"

  Good afternoon readers. :)

  So no post yesterday. I decided that Sundays are going to be break/rethink/look for inspiration day, for my blog.
  However! The rest of the days of the week I will be posting, unless some emergency comes up and prevents me from doing so.. ;)

  Lately I have been so into getting ready for Valentine's day. And then I spent a good two hours last night looking up DIY projects on Pinterest.... but it's appropriate. It's only two weeks away! So keep an eye out for some holiday inspired recipes coming your way soon.

  Today I'm going to tell you about something I learned from my time in Colorado last fall when I went and lived with some absolutely amazing people and learned a ton of things.

 And that something is..."me time", or "solitude time" as we called it there.

  This was a mandatory time we had twice a week during the program, where we had to go outside and find a spot to sit for one and a half to two hours by ourselves. We could basically do whatever we needed to "readjust our sights". For me it was almost always journaling. This is one of the reasons I was able to finish the journal I started when I was there. The first journal I've ever finished by the way. ( I'm very proud of myself. )

  I learned after incorporating this practice into life often that it helped me sooo much more than I thought it would.

  For someone who almost never takes time to site down and sort through her thoughts and emotions but always needs to, this practice made such a huge difference.

  And I know you might be saying "I'm more of a people person.." Trust me, I am too. I almost always hated pulling myself away from everyone to go sit by myself for a few hours. But every time I finished I felt so much better!

  So it's something I've tried to incorporate into my daily life now that I am back home and it has helped tremendously throughout my juice fast.

                                                                                                                            That little purple one is the one I finished!

                                      I have one journal for personal things and another to keep track of my weight loss.


  I don't write in it as often as the others, but I try to at least once a week. Or each time I reach a new goal. It has helped to keep track of my thoughts and feelings while going through this. And it helps keep me encouraged, which is essential!

  So whatever it is that helps you to think clearly again, consider incorporating it into your life. I've found I can clear out the spider webs up there and let the sun shine in a bit if I deliberately take a few hours a week to do so.

  So yesterday was my first opportunity to do this in a while.
I haven't done it enough lately because I have been so busy!

  But my sister had to go to work and she can't drive herself yet, so someone had to take her. And it just so happens that there is a cute little café just up the road which is quiet and quaint early on a Sunday morning.

                                                                                                                                 Yes, that is a snapchat pic ;)

   I had about two hours and so I sat with my herbal lavender tea ( without sugar ) and sorted through some of my thoughts. I usually try to find places that are quiet and pretty and inspirational. And this café was perfect. I think I'll frequent there more often, maybe even to do some brainstorming for future posts and ideas on La Santé Café.

I found this quote and thought it quite appropriate. At some point, dreamers must become doers. So summon up your courage and go after that adventure, whatever it may be. Believe in yourself, decide to see beauty wherever you look and then take the first step. That's all it takes.

                                                                                                               To recap...

                                              1. Take time for yourself. It's better for you and everyone else in the long run.

2. Look for beauty. It's everywhere if you look closely enough, and when you find it your outlook tends to remain more positive and optimistic.
3. Thinking clearly promotes mood improvement, which promotes happiness, which promotes a healthy mind, which promotes healthy habits... so clear out those spider webs!
4. Be doers!

                                                                                             5. Café's are always a good idea.



                                                 And here's a few selfies for ya. Because sister dates are the best. <3


Happy Monday!

Saturday, January 31, 2015

Good Finds

    Today I woke up with the sun. Not something I've been accustomed to doing lately since I haven't been working and I've been sick. But I must say, the birds and the rising of the sun was most exquisite and refreshing as I poked my head out the door to observe them.... and then I quickly ducked it back in to keep away from the cold and to keep the cats from getting in. ;)

  The reason for my early rising was so that I could take a trip with some of the family to a local market place, which is only open on Saturdays and where lots of things are sold. They sell things like returned items and hand crafted objects.

   The key to these market places is keeping a good watch on what you buy, having some pretty good bargaining skills and knowing how to look for a good deal. Get these things down and you'll be doing fantastic!

  I love market places! Because I love bargaining and talking to people and finding cool things. There are always so many unique things to find.

  And another thing this particular market has is fresh fruits and veggies!! This is good news for me because I now have the opportunity to find good deals on lots of things that I need for juicing.

 So let me tell you about my finds, because I'm rather excited about it.  ;)

Lets just talk about the logistics of this for a moment...
An entire basket full of Jalapeno peppers, which I use to give some of my juices a little more kick. - $2.00
10 Red Navel oranges, which will provide plenty of juice to last quite a few days.
5 Green Bell Peppers
A basket of Tangerines
And my favorite find of all! Because they will last a good while and we got them for such a good price. Tomatoes!!                                  

  These are hard to find in the winter time for a relatively cheap price. So I searched through the box this sweet old man was pointing us toward, found 18 of the best ones he had and then an extra because he told me to through in one more. And all this for a grand total of....

So all in all we spent $17 on all these goods. Normally we would not have gotten this many tomatoes, probably only a few bell peppers, 6 or so oranges for like $5. No tangerines and probably a few jalapenos at two for a dollar. And we would have spent I'm willing to bet closer to $30 on much less then what you see here.

I also heard tell today of a Farmer's Market not far from us. And by not far I mean a good hour away, but we live way out next to a river and everything is that far away. ;)
Farmer's markets are more ideal for this particular type of shopping. They'll probably have even better selections then what I found today and really great prices. Plus they'll most likely sell seasonal produce, which means it they'll be sweeter and larger because they'll be what grows best this time of year.

Like all of these things I found today.

      In short, farmer's markets are an excellent idea if you are thinking about a juice fast or even just eating cleanly. If you are in need of lot's of yummy fruits and veggies then go online and search for local farmers markets in your area. And with spring on the way, they'll surely be full of lots of fresh, yummy things.

The loot.

Photo creds go to my little brother. ( Thanks Steven. ;) )

Now by the way, I'll be able to make one of my favorite recipes involving tomatoes and peppers to share with you all!

And just because I love finding good deals...

These are my other finds, spring colors in nail polish. Eyeliner and some base for only $4.50.

(Can you tell I'm ready for spring??)

And so after a day full of sunrises, adventuring, bargaining, rocking out to 70's rock music with my dad in the car, noticing a particularly cute construction worker on the way, finding good deals and lots and lots of walking ( also a plus of going to a market place ) I am now ready to make some delicious juice.

And then it's off to exploring a nearby town on the river and some downtime at a local cafe with my mom. I kind of love Saturdays.

Friday, January 30, 2015

Of Sick Days and Inspiration

  Today was another day of doctoring the sick. And because I was not feeling well myself a few days ago I have all these wonderful ideas about how to sooth soar throats and clear up noses and all those lovely things.

 I shared a soup recipe with you yesterday. Today I'll tell you  about a nice little drink I cooked up which does wonders for your immune system when your not feeling well.

 There are only two simple ingredients. Apple cider vinegar and honey.
 Two tbs of each in 8 oz of water. Warm it and mix it well. It may have a bit of a burn but it's certainly no worse than any medicine you have to take in order to get better! And the honey helps with this part too.
 Drink two mugfulls ( 16 oz ) of this a day and if your throat really doesn't feel well, gargle with a bit of it too.

Apple cider vinegar has anti-bacterial properties that will help fight off the flu and relieve inflammation of that swollen throat. It made mine feel so much better when I was sick and seems to be working rather well on everyone else too!

After doctoring everyone and making lunch ( which I can't eat ) I retired to my room, put on some Ella Fitzgerald and sat down to think. Something I haven't been able to do much of today.

My dream for La Santé Café is to one day turn it into an actual health food café.
Far fetched? Perhaps. Achievable? Absolutely!

But some days are more discouraging than others, like today for example.
All these questions circulate around in my head. Like, Would people even be interested in that sort of thing? Could I run a 
café single handedly? How will we ever get to the place where this could actually work?
Etc., etc...
But then I remembered the importance of seeing things through, even when it looks rather doubtful. Something I've learned from spending a month and a half juicing. ;)

Then my mother who has been out shopping all day showed me a few things she picked up for me while she was out. And my inspiration returned!


Every time I create a new recipe I write it down on one of these index cards and then rate it using a system of five stars. So that I give you the best of them. And so that in the future when I compile a book I'll know which ones were the best.
So my mom found a cute little box that says "recipes". It's perfect! And then this tea set that looks like it's right out of a small café is just lovely.

To summarize, inspiration is fickle. Don't rely on it to pull you through. Have some gumption of your own and take inspiration when it comes. Work through the harder times and you'll be glad you did.

Oh and thank you all for reading. I've been keeping up with how much traffic we're getting here and I am flattered to say it's much more than I expected!

I write for you, so thank you.

 Until tomorrow,