Saturday, October 29, 2011

Family is All I Need

Recently I had a follower email me requesting
a prenatal vitamin recommendation.
New Chapter, baby!
They make the best vitamins.
I've been taking them for three years since I've been 
pregnant then nursing, then pregnant then nursing.
I love them.
Other vitamins made me nauseous. 
These are small and are taken three times a day.
When I first had to get into the habit of taking a vitamin three times a day
I would make checks on my calendar so I could keep track.

I also take their Vitamin B since I don't eat meat!
It is so important to take vitamins since our soil is so depleted.
You can get them inexpensively online from

Time with My Girls!

My past couple weeks have been terrible! 
I've been so stressed and busy with midterms and events.
Now that they are all over with,
I set yesterday aside to do nothing but spend time with my family.
Of course, for a Mother,
"Nothing" mean doing three loads of laundry,
scrubbing both bathrooms,
and making three means from scratch,
It was such a great relaxing, memorable day. 
A perfect day for me includes 
working in the kitchen with my toddler!

on Natalie's blog and I had to make them with my girls.  
I consider this a great treat because it really isn't bad.
Well chocolate, yes.
I only think about the good qualities of chocolate when I'm eating it though.
Of course I eliminated the shortening,
I used canola oil instead.
We used raisins as eyes instead of sprinkles,
and I didn't use the reese's pieces.
But other than that, come on,
crackers, pretzels, peanut butter...sounds like a perfect snack to me.
Plus singing the itsy bitsy spider is an essential part of our day.
We are major fans of the guy. 
These were so fun to make together.

Thérèse dipping the crackers into the chocolate.

Working very hard to get that chocolate spread on.

Putting on the eyes.

Pretzels dipped in chocolate.
Her art. 

AH! Spiders. Yes I want one! 
As I was eating mine,
I felt like I was four.
After a week of midterms...
yes I want to feel four again. 

Stick them in the fridge so they can hold together.

Yesterday we also loaded the girls into the trailer 
and road our bides to the park.
So fun!

Monique is my energetic one!
I don't know if she'll ever sit still enough to cook with me in the kitchen.

The other day we carved pumpkins.
I was stunned that when we were finished,
they looked like our personality.

On the left, we have my brother-in-law,
who is always making THAT face when he can't believe 
he is eating yet another vegan meal.
HAha. (Btw: He secretly loves being vegan).
The middle is me, I'm the stressed/uptight/annoyed one.
At the right, my husband.
Enough said. 
I think you can understand his personality just by looking at that thing.
Too happy about life. 

Thursday, October 20, 2011

How I Get Through My Day

Oh good people of the blogging world,
how I miss you, 
and the simple life I had when I was able to blog.
I'm dealing with midterms in school right now. 
Which is....okay, I'm not going to lie, 
I actually kind of like school. 
I enjoy my major (English Lit) 
and I totally am in love with my professors.
Not totally down with the craziness of school and babies though.
And we are commuting for my classes which is super hard.

Take your own Lunch:
The Cheaper Healthier Option

I always take my own lunches and snacks to class with me.
Daniel will make dinner, clean the kitchen, 
and sit down with a sigh after a long day of running the house with the babies.
Then I'll get in the kitchen to make my lunch for the next day while I hear him exclaiming,
"Your always cooking! You have to take wraps, sushi....",
and it's totally true.
Hey, if I'm going to spend six hours on campus
sitting in uncomfortable seats, and watching everyone else eat fast food
I want to treat myself with some good food.
GOOD food. Food that is going to 
fill me, nourish me and make me excited to be alive.

I'm going to share one with you.
It isn't by any means a meal you sit down to, and think about the amazing flavors.
But I loved it today. 
With the built up stress of homework, essays, midterms, potty training,
I've been doing daily cardio and intense yoga. I'm finally intermediate! Yay!
So today I did an hour of exercise, showered, and rushed off to school.
After my first class this tempeh salad was perfect.

Tempeh is a food for atheletes. 
It's loaded with protein.
We try to have it once a week.

You can pick it up at Trader Joe's (Their brand is in an orange package)
or any health food store.
It's usually in the fridge section with the tofu.

Tempeh Salad

1) Unwrap tempeh from package and steam for twenty minutes.
Remove tempeh from heat and cool completely.

2) This is a salad. So go crazy with the veggies!
I used the leftover veggies that were in our fridge.
Here are some options:

- 1 chopped carrot
- 1 chopped celery
- 3 chopped radish
- 1 minced green onion
- 1/4 cup frozen peas
- 1/4 cup frozen corn
- 1 tablespoon minced parsley

3) Mix in: 

1/4 cup veganaise
a dash of umboshi plum vinegar (optional)
a teaspoon mustard 

I made this salad Monday night.
Got to plan ahead when you take your own meals!

Lunch #1 

Tuesday I had it in two wraps with lettuce in Ezekiel tortillas. 
I love these hearty tortillas.
They are packed with fiber.

Lunch #2

Today I had these with the most scrumptious crackers.
My in-laws had them in their cupboard.
Trader Joe's Multigrain Crackers.
Really yummy.

This meal is super colorful and rejuvenating. 
I highly recommend it for busy, active people.

Stretch it Out

For me, doing yoga is the equivalent of getting a massage.
I feel so great after a work out!
Here is my new favorite. 
My body gets a complete stretch.

Indulge in Stories of Hope:

This month is Domestic Violence Abuse Month.
A friend of mine recently lost her best friend to domestic violence abuse.
You can go to Natalie's blog to read her whole story.
Anytime she mentions it in her blog I just burst into tears
because she is so honest about her suffering and 
hopeful about the reason for this suffering.
Please pray for an end to domestic violence
(they recently legalized it in Kansas)
and pray for Shannon's two beautiful babies.

On that note, I'm very happy with my babies
(and the messes they make)
and our happy (stressful) home.

Talk to you soon!

Monday, October 17, 2011

Wall Art

Wall Art is taking creativity to a whole other level. 
Hmm, I wonder why, maybe my the size of the art piece.
It catches the eye and creates drama in a way other pieces of art miss. 

Wall Art and Street Art are the thing now. 
Since I found the video below, I knew that I wanted to paint, 
use mixed media, and spray paint a big piece of art. 

Amazing and inspiring but the only problem with this method of creativity, 
is the temporariness of the piece of work.
I would want to preserve it, just in case we ever moved or got tired of the space. 
My cousin and I were talking about this the other day. 
How cool would it be to have a big piece of canvas that you could draw, paint, whatever. 
This got me thinking into various ways to create a canvas,
other than just using a wall.

Today, I found a solution to the problem.
Taking household products I created my own cardboard canvas.

(I know its a poor paint job, but once the whole piece comes together it will look cool)

Items needed:

Masking Tape

You just need enough cardboard to the size desired.
Since I have been itching to do a wall art piece
I made my as big as a wall in our house.
After getting to desired size nail the cardboard to the wall.
I recommend nails to really support the cardboard,
once the cardboard gets painted it begins to lean forward from the weight.
Find those studs! Nail into a stud whenever possible.

After you have it up, its time to paint it whatever color you choose 
to be your background. 
I choose white since I had a spare bucket of it in the garage. 

D'awww look at my help! 

I will be sure to snap a picture of the finished outcome, 
whenever I am able to complete the whole piece. 
The cool thing about using cardboard isssss, it's cardboard
you can easily replace it or make another if needed to, anyways 
this is your art piece make it your own, create a canvas in the shape of 
a dinosaur, a tree, whatever! 

Have fun, I now I will!

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Sweet Potato & Pecan Cinnamon Buns with Maple Glaze

Hey good people of the Blogging world!
I really should be doing homework right now,
but I absolutely had to share this recipe with you all.

It's Autumn! Time to get our fall foods on!
Which include sweet potatoes and cinnamon rolls,
put them together, and you get perfection.
My mother-in-law made these a couple days ago.
I finally made it to their house today to devour not one,
oh no, but two.
They made me do a little dance and be excited about life.

Oh! Don't they look good!

She made them with whole wheat flour and they still rocked. 
They also call for vegan cream cheese, 
which turns the frosting into paradise. 
There are lots of brands out there
and major grocery stores are starting to carry them.
Very cool.

You can find the recipe here.

Alright! Back to homework!

Love you all,

Friday, October 7, 2011

Nature in your home

Not everyone is able to live in nature, as these people do
so in what ways can you add a touch of the natural 
in your own home? 

1). House plants - plants are a great way to liven up your home and at the same time 
create a healthier environment. 

         A Peace Lily Plant placed in your bathroom can 
                    help reduce mold by 60 percent. 

                     A Boston Fern Houseplant helps turn your dry air 
                   in your home just the same as a humidifier, by 
                                 releasing moisture into the air. 

       Spider plants provide healthier and more breathable air 
             into your home, pollutants in the air you breathe 
        can cause wheezing and headaches, if you suffer from 
                       any of these, this plant is for you. 

2.) Bring the outside in through Art

There are many websites offering posters or pictures with nature in them.
Or you can paint a room a more natural color.
Or you can create your own Art that has natural elements
as I did below.

In this artwork I created I took a clipart photo and created it to fit 
on a 8.5 X 11 sheet of paper. 
Then cut it out and went outside to pick some flowers from 
our Bugambilia plant, which has some pretty flowers

I used the middle flower to look like mini flowers, 
you can see a few along the ground outline. 

A cousin of our's (from Arisa's family) brought in a branch
and used that as a center focus in her living room.
And she has a house plant ;)

When we go on vacations we try to gather little remnants of our trip 
and stick them in jars to decorate our home. 
Here is a jar from when Arisa and I were dating. I was going to school in 
Santa Barbara so I sent her sea shells and sand from the beach we hung out at. 
This is a great way to incorporate nature and memories into your home decor. 

The summer is finally over out here so I hope to be able to post more 
since I can work outside now! 
Look forward to more posts from the toolshed side of this blog. 

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Easy Macrobiotic Family Meal

I miss you people! 
I've been so busy with school
I haven't had a chance to blog 
about all the great food I've been chowing down on.

Monday night I was beat! I've been doing about eight hours of homework a day,
and between that, toddlers and life, I was exhasted.
I came home from picking up my daughter from a play date 
after my four hour class, and I felt awful.
My hubby made this amazing dinner for me and it was just what I needed. 
Very medicinal and restored my body.
I followed it up with vegan chocolate cake of course.

Here is what we ate:

- Adzuki beans (leftover from Tasty Tostadas)
- Arame with Carrots and Onions from The Kind Diet
-Fried Rice with Kale and Scallions from My Father's Daughter.
Everyone in my family ate this, everyone.
Including my one and two year old. 
I think this is toddler friendly food because it is loaded with flavor,
but macrobiotic flavor is very subtle
so they can easily eat it.

The Brown Rice Dish is easily my favorite rice dish.
So good!
As you know, I'm learning to appreciate sea vegetables.
Thankfully, Daniel accidentally added 
way too much soy sauce to the Arame with Carrots
so I couldn't even taste it! Love it! 
It makes me so proud when my family eats this food. 
I can already see their bones strengthening and their skin brightening.

And lastly, we must reward ourselves with a healthy chocolate cake.
I made it with my toddler over the weekend.
Baking is one of our favorite things to do together,
so I make time for it.
We added strawberry jam over the frosting for the middle filling.
Totally delicious!
You can get this gluten-free, sugar and dairy-free cake recipe here.
A while back, one of my readers ask if I'd share what is in my pantry.
I hope to share this with you this upcoming week!

Until then, if you want a good ghost story
read Turn of the Screw,
a story I just read for class.
Or IS it a ghost story?
Dun dun DUN!

Can you tell I've been spending way too much time doing homework?
Turning slightly geeky.