Wednesday, January 20, 2016

january {cold + gray}

it has been january around here. sometimes cold, sometimes bitter cold and the sun likes to tease us from behind the clouds.

i'm beating the grays by taking down some late christmas decorations and making some serious chili in the crockpot for dinner later this week!

really, try this recipe from kristy at boys ahoy. you will love it!

happy Wednesday. try to stay warm!

Monday, January 18, 2016

health + food thoughts during a whole15

hello friends!

so it was time again. time for a 'whole15'. i had done a SERIOUS number on myself with enjoying the holiday menu{s} and my birthday. i felt pretty sluggish the final few days of 2015, and the first week or so of january my sugar cravings were over-the-top. i am glad to say that i am all in for this new whole15 adventure...

i did some prep. such as for several days before i began to cut way back on my gluten + legume intake. i increased my water consumption and did a fair amount of meal prep.  {bulk protein prep, and a big fridge clean out} i was hoping all of this would help with making my 15 days a little easier.

the first few days - sleep was so crucial. oh and eating in a timely manner. however i noticed that my first and second days weren't super difficult to say 'no' to certain foods. i did have a few cravings but i was able to push them aside. i think it was the fact that dinner was already made and i was drinking black coffee and hot tea.

i also have noticed that i'm getting more okay with just eating what i need. hm, i have cooked veggies, hard boiled eggs and black olives... okay that's a meal. i served them at one time but not mixed up in a bowl or anything like that!

the past few days - i had a really hard time turning down a beer at the brewery on friday night. but i was able to do it. i think i should be able to use that momentum to push forward. i am honestly already thinking about turning this into a whole30 instead. but let's get through 15 days first, okay?!

what is next - my plan is to finish off the whole15 (or grow it into a whole30) then stay away from gluten + legumes and limit my sugar, alcohol + dairy intake. i think this year is all about the REAL food and how to keep my body filled with veggies, quality protein + good fats.

as for healthy movement - i am also making it a goal to hit my 5 mile step goal with a 85% rate in 2016. this requires a bit of effort some days (about two days each week it is very easy to hit my step-goal without even thinking) but i think it is a worthwhile goal. and it gives me just a little wiggle room which will be helpful if i get sick or something like that (i can miss one day each week and still hit my goal for 2016). so far i was short on my steps three days this year.

how have your meals been in january? want to read about my past posts on whole30? click HERE

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

{cultivate} + {resolve} 2016 Garden Dreaming

Here we are, it is that time again... oh yes. Making 'Garden Resolutions + Plans' for 2016!

This will be our first growing year on our homestead and I am looking to learn A LOT! It will be fun to see what is around our property and how it can benefit from a little love (or no love from this gal at all) during our first spring and summer. With this first season of growth in mind I have a few plans...

2016 Garden Resolutions
::grow produce that we eat + some that we will save {such as}::
  • tomatoes
  • peppers
  • onions
  • lettuce, spinach
  • zucchini
  • cucumbers
  • potatoes
  • sweet potatoes
  • carrots
  • garlic
  • herbs: basil, thyme, bay, cilantro, rosemary, sage
::spend time on our food or garden everyday {cooking, prepping, menu planning, gardening, etc.}::
::grow flowers::
::grow a pumpkin and/or berry patch::
::plant a fruit tree::
::find ways that work for us to preserve some of our mushroom harvest::
::continue to care for our laying hens::
::research, plan, + create a root cellar::
::take notes about our homestead --> growth of food, consumption, + general needs::

I'm using January + February to read some gardening books, lay out my garden plan, and consider the year's schedule + flow. How about you, up to some garden dreaming?

Monday, January 11, 2016

real food + whole15 inspiration {january 2016 edition}

hi there!

i am using today to start a 'whole15'. just a little reset to relieve some of the bloat and get my sugar cravings back under control. having the holidays and several family birthdays (including my own last week) always make about eight weeks a terribly difficult time for me to make good food choices. i hope i can be a little smarter next go-round. being a year older an' all...

so in honor of my reset i've pulled together a few links/ideas of what/who has been inspiring my prep-thoughts for my whole 15. (which maybe it will turn into a whole30 i don't know, but last time i set out for a whole30 i found 15 days was great and i was able to move forward with many good food plans for quite a while after that... so we are starting here with 15 days)

dollyessfit {i follow her on instagram}

Dolly is super positive and i love her quick work out videos. she also shares many recipes where you can use leftovers or with just a few tweaks the same ingredients will be a different lunch than the day before.

my chickens
these ladies are still laying eggs on the sunny days. full force! so on yesterday's blustery sunday (no eggs or only one when it is cold and too gray - we are not putting in a lamp this year to increase winter egg production) i made two dozen hard boiled eggs for snacks and lunch salad toppings. thanks ladies!!

epicureannie {i follow her on instagram}
Annabelle is working for way more than just a whole30 (i believe she is going for a whole60). her health gains on her overall journey are amazing. i love seeing her food photos - especially the simple snacks/quick lunches, which make me not feel so bad when i am just really needing a coffee and a larabar to get the kids to the end of the school day. (we are all human, right?) she also is such a positive reminder of thinking ahead with again, the quick fixes that you can take along with you when you know it is going to be difficult to stay compliant when out with friends or around town.

of course i still use and i follow whole30 on instagram and that is always super helpful + motivating. day one can be exciting so here's to hoping i don't crash out on day two!

happy monday!

Wednesday, January 6, 2016

my 16 in 2016

I have been making lists and goals and drafting plans as long as I can remember {see my lists of goals from 201220132014, 2015}. I love to check off a task + to plan all the ways I could spend my time, money, energy and other resources. I love to consider options. I love having open ended goals because it gives me the flexibility to really strive for whatever I deem most important or appropriate to me - even if that changes several times during one calendar year. 

I write the following 16 goals for 2016 in order to work on passions and spend my time in meaningful ways. I know that my efforts may not always have perfectly posed end results. 

I will live 2016 with the word "cultivate" in mind. 

I will create in positive ways. I will take action. I will plan and just start. I will try not to rehash my well-laid plans too many times {I can already hear you laughing, j}. 
I will ask myself "what can I do to support my happy + healthy life?"... 

My 16 in 2016

1. Grow.
2. Improve.
3. Read.
4. Taste.
5. Rest.
6. Photograph.
7. Save.
8. Appreciate.
9. Make.
10. Move.
11. Plant.
12. Do.
13. Share joy.
14. Learn.
15. Create.
16. Simplify.

How about you? Any goals for this year?

Monday, January 4, 2016

{cultivate}::a word for 2016

hello my friends! happy 2016!

i hope bringing in the new year was an absolutely joyful event for you. wrapping up the past year and taking those first few breaths of a new year of possibility always gets me so excited for what is to come. of course i reflect on the past year and something i noticed from 2015 was how successful my goals were... and i think it was because i had found such a great word for me to keep in mind for the year. {read about "do" here}

after my success with "do" in 2015 i knew i needed to bring focus to a word that evokes action in 2016. a word that makes me feel that i am still growing. growing food, growing as a person. a word that makes me feel that i am creating. creating a life here in our new home, being creative as a person. a word that will allow me to focus on myself, my health and enriching the way i treat myself and spend my time caring for me and my family. these thoughts helped me select this year's word.

this year i will keep the word "cultivate" in mind. i will allow it to inspire my actions around

...  creating a home and lifestyle that works for us at our new home
... focusing on cultivating rituals and routines during our days, weeks, seasons
...  growing produce + eggs on our land and allowing that to influence a simple + seasonal menu
... devoting time for friends, family, crafting, play, rest, reading + photography
... enriching my life by nourishing my body in a healthy way with sleep, food + movement

this will be a worthwhile + special year. i can just feel it.

here's to a fantastic 2016! i wish you the best start into the new year!