Healthy Chocolate Shake

Super simple, super delicious and healthy to boot!  This is a recipe I came up with so my kids could have a healthier alternative to a milkshake at home.  Rich in probiotics and antioxidant power, this is a shake I’m happy to serve my kids.

A healthy treat that makes Lucas smile!

A healthy treat that makes Lucas smile!

 

1 Cup of plain yogurt

1 spoonful of organic cocoa powder

1 scoop of grass-feed whey

a few ice cubes

Blend ingredients and serve!

Coconut Milk Custards

Coconut milk custards

Coconut milk custards

 

Here is a recipe for baby (8 months up) that is not only delicious, it’s super healthy.  I got this one from the book Super Nutrition for Babies.  It’s simple and a great treat for your little one.

Coconut Custard

Makes 8 servings

1 cup of organic, whole coconut milk (no sugar added)

1/2 cup of softened organic butter

1/2 uber ripe banana

6 large egg yolks (organic and pasture raised for super nutrition 🙂

Preheat oven to 325

Mix all ingredients, pour the mix into 8 buttered paper cups set in a tin muffin pan.  You can also use ramekins.  Place the muffin pan in a large class pan filled two-thirds with water.  Bake for 45 minutes or until set.

That’s it, they are ready to eat, you can refrigerate for up to 5 days.

 

I fed this to Marcos this morning and he seemed to approve 🙂

Marcos 9 months young

Marcos 9 months young

 

Letting go

I have never been one of those women that loves breastfeeding.  To be perfectly honest, I find it a tedious process.  It is a huge commitment and can prove hard at times.  Having said that,  I strongly believe it is one of the best things we can do for our babies.  I have seen the health benefits in both my children and I would recommend every mom to at least give it a fair try.  But I understand how some might not feel that connection to their babies while breastfeeding.  Personally I have experienced that bond to my children in other arenas.  In the end it’s a very personal choice.

Well, a couple of weeks ago my Marcos, decided to stop (breastfeeding).  I didn’t do anything different.  One day he just looked at it, pushed away and started to cry.  He has done that every time since.  I couldn’t believe it!  He is only 9 months!  My first only lost interest after he was one year old.  You’d think I would be relieved, given my take on the matter, but no.  I feel like crying every time I think about it.  As a matter of fact I think I might just tear up right now.  I have been pumping about five times a day, every day since he stopped.  I see my milk supply lower every day.  I keep trying, but I know this whole thing will be over soon.   I feel helpless,confused and a little desperate.  I know I am torturing myself to no end but I just can’t seem to let go.

I am always advising people to be flexible in order to avoid suffering.  Yet this is a piece of wisdom I am having trouble applying to myself.  I have realized over the past few years I am very open when it comes to others, but when it comes to me I am extremely rigid.  Why can’t I afford myself the same compassion?  I think at some level I look for suffering.

This nature of attachment might very well be the root of  pain in our lives!  This applies to everyone, yet (and I might be a little biased here 🙂 ) mom’s have a great disadvantage in the matter.  We are for ever attached to our children!  I am not trying to make us victims here, I know we all suffer.  Neither am I saying that a mothers pain is more valid that anyone else’s.  But being the mother of two, I can’t help but wonder how my mother survived all these years :).  I’m not going to bore you with the details of how we form a crazy bond to our babies.  Let me just say that one memory of that tiny hand touching your cheek has the power to tear you up into a million pieces.  And no I am not exaggerating.

Don’t worry I have a point coming up :).  If we could let go.  If we could relax our grasp.  If we could recognize the impermanence of things.  If we could accept everything is as it should, we could free ourselves from suffering!  I know, easier said than done.  But not a bad goal, don’t you think?  Even if we never get there 100% .  10% would improve our happiness and health.  If we don’t let go of things that tie us down, we will never move on to what could possibly be… the best thing ever :).

I am not sure I will ever be able to free myself  from attachment.  Quite frankly it seems an impossible task.  What I can do is try letting go of little things.  Then I can try letting go of bigger ones.  I could try not being such a control freak and allow some things to unfold on their own.  I could remind myself, every time my shoulders start to scrunch up, to take a deep breath and let go.

So, what about this whole breastfeeding business?  For today I am going to cry it out.  I am going to allow myself to experience what is a big loss for me.  But then I am going to give myself props for making it this far.  I am going to congratulate myself for trying my bestest :).  Then I am gong to try and accept it.  And finally for the sake of my baby and me, I am going to let this go and move on to the next wonderful experience.  With this wonderful child next to me I know great things await.

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Rules for eating

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I have never been in France,  but I LOVE french cuisine.  Rich and savory dishes seem to be a staple in French food.  Most americans think such hearty and fatty meals are bad for the waistline and heart.  But the French live longer, skinnier and suffer less from coronary disease.  But how, one might ask.   It’s no big secret, really, how the French stay healthy and happy.  They love food and know how to enjoy it.  I was reading a very interesting article about things the French teach their kids about eating.  I believe we should all incorporate most of these rules into our lives, if we haven’t already.

Healthy eating is possible for all. Remember, eating healthy is not only about to the type of food you eat, it’s also about HOW you eat.  Here are some simple rules to go by:

Savor food.  Eating is not a sin, it’s not only a necessity, but a pleasure.  Don’t gulp down your food like it’s a marathon, enjoy each bite and slow down!

Eat real foods in healthy portions.  When you eat whole foods, not only are you giving your body important nutrients but you are also satisfying your appetite.  Wholesome foods are nutrient rich, more filling and satisfying.  Quality ingredients do make for a better meal.  Visit your farmers market and eat seasonally when possible.  When you cut down on processed foods you are doing a favor to your health and waistline. And for crying out loud, don’t skip lunch cause you are saving your “calories” for that buffet you are attending for dinner.  It won’t help you lose weight and it’s not healthy in so many levels.

Let’s get cooking!  Preparing your own meals is not only good for your health from a nutrition standpoint.  It’s good for your mind and soul.  It’s a wonderful opportunity to spend more time with your kids and teach them the valuable lesson of how to use the kitchen!  You can pass on recipes and create beautiful and healthy memories.

Sit down!  Another fast disappearing tradition in America, eating at the table.  This is the time to enjoy your food and your company.  It’s time we stop eating standing up by the kitchen counter like a cranky teenager.  It’s time we stop eating and driving, it’s kind of gross and dangerous.  Make time to just eat, it’s worth it.

Drink water.  This is a big one our culture, Americans consume most their calories in liquid form!  Flavored coffees, juices and soda are an everyday occurrence.  I don’t need to elaborate, its simple, favor water when it comes to liquids if you want to be healthy and skinny.

Know your limit.   When you are full, just stop eating.  This is easier when you eat slowly because you give your stomach time to signal your brain.  So, two birds one stone.  🙂

Don’t snack after dinner.  Once the kitchen is closed for the night, stay away.  This will help you do some intermittent fasting, which has great health benefits like weight loss, for example.

Enjoy eating!  Eating should be an enjoyable experience.  Stop counting calories at every turn, stop with the guilt trips, it’s not healthy and it doesn’t help your cause.  If you are going to eat a piece of chocolate cake, make it a religious experience  :).  Try different types of food, flavors and textures.  Try new recipes or new restaurants!  Eating is so much fun, don’t turn it into something tragic.  Eat wholesome foods a plenty and treat yourself in moderation.  No fuss, no shame.

Follow these simple rules to eating and you will live happier and healthier.  You will smile more often and you will  look better, that is a fact (in my opinion 🙂 ).