Smoothies!

Smoothies are a mom’s best friend! I’ve always loved breakfast smoothies for myself for many reasons: they are so easy, I never run out of the ingredients, they give me energy and fill me up without weighing my down at the start of the day, and did I mention they are easy – just to name a few!
When I became a mom to toddlers, my love for smoothies only increased. With our first little guy J, I couldn’t fill him up! He was constantly hungry and he had a problem with chewing which had my Heimlich maneuver on standby at all times – not to mention my nerves a wreck when he ate anything close to age appropriate bites. Snacks in particular were an issue because I couldn’t just give him a snack to eat; I’d need to be watching. Then with our second baby, JoJo, we had the opposite issue of her never wanting to eat. Bring on the patience, sister!
So anyways, I needed to get creative. I have to credit J for the idea because he’s the one that originally asked to taste my green smoothie and why I hadn’t thought to let him try it before is beyond me! HE LOVED IT!! So this is where our “smoothies for toddlers” got its start!
I wanted to share a few of our family’s favorite recipes with y’all. A few sweet friends have asked me recently to write a post on this so here goes:
** Note: We only drink coconut milk for our milk so that’s what I’m writing on these recipes, but any kind of milk is totally fine – it substitutes equally. I also will use coconut water. Regular water works to but I like the added benefits of the coconut milk/water.
Blend all ingredients in each recipe until smooth, add a fun straw, and ENJOY!
Just Peachy
8 – 10oz coconut milk
1C kale
1C spinach
1 banana
1/2C frozen peaches
Tropical Greens
8 – 10oz coconut water
2 C kale
1 banana
1 C frozen pineapple
big splash of orange juice
Berry Blast
8 – 10oz coconut milk
1 C kale
1 C spinach
1 ½ C frozen mixed berries
juice of half a lemon
Peanut Butter and Banana
8 – 10oz coconut milk
½ C spinach
2 frozen bananas
2 TBS peanut butter powder (our favorite is by Just Great Stuff)
Greek Goodness
8 oz coconut milk
¼ C (2oz) Greek yogurt
1 C spinach
1 C frozen berries
1 banana
1 TSP chia seeds
Peanut Butter & Jelly
8 – 10oz coconut milk
½ C spinach
2 TBSP peanut butter powder
1 C frozen berries
Mighty Green Toddler
8 – 10oz coconut water
½ cucumber
½ C spinach
1 green apple, cored
1 frozen banana
1 heaping TBSP hemp seeds
The best part about these recipes – you don’t need to measure exactly and you can make “smoothie packs.” These have saved me SO much time. Prep your portioned out fruits in zip lock bags and freeze (you can add the greens in, I just prefer to portion greens and refrigerate separately). Then you can grab two bags in the morning, add you milk or water and blend. Literally a 30 second meal or snack!
Fun goodies to add: hemp seeds, chia seeds, or honey are some of our favorites!
(If you have any different recipes that your kiddos, or you, love leave the ideas below! I’m always looking for easy and fun new recipes!)

 

Juicing continued…

Juicing continued…
So as I mentioned yesterday I love juicing! I’ve noticed some major health benefits to juicing which makes the sometimes long process of juicing so incredibly worth it!
When I first started juicing, my mom was fighting cancer. I woke up every morning and made us both a big green juice. She loved it! She felt better throughout the day, was able to keep the juice down, it was easy for her to drink, and it was delicious even when chemo altered her taste buds.
During the last 2 weeks my mom was alive, these benefits changed to me as now it was about the only thing I could keep down. Juice is packed with so many nutrients and you will feel that benefit indefinitely! 
So rewind to the first week of my juicing adventure! I bought our juicer the day before I started a new position at work (which had nothing to do with me buying the juicer I just remember the timing). The first morning I juiced I felt great… then the next day came. I literally came down with the worst “cold” of my life. My poor mom had to wear a mask in the house because I literally looked like a small train ran my over! It was awful! Then comes the next day… I wake up with a million pimples. I have always had extremely dry skin and I’ve never dealt with acne so this was surprising to say the least. I didn’t even know what to do with a zit! At this point I’m still thinking I caught this awful monster from work or something but I would soon figure out my body was literally detoxing. At this time of my life I was running 6-10 miles a day and was in great shape so if someone looked at me they’d think I was really healthy. What they wouldn’t know is up to this point I had dealt on and off for many years with an eating disorder. I’m not going to get into this too much right now but I had a horrible body imagine and was about as unhealthy as could be. In fact my doctor told me to stop running because all things combined I’ll probably have a heart attack.
So after my gross phase of monster cold finally faded my body literally felt healthy! I could feel my energy level rise, my skin looked way better, and I had better hunger/satisfaction in my diet. Another thing I noticed was little things like achy joints, dry eyes, bloated tummy, swollen fingers all were greatly reduced! This was huge for me!

There is no way to possibly consume as many veggies and fruits through whole food as you do through juicing. On average, I will juice 5 zucchini, a bunch of chard, a bunch of kale, 2 cups of spinch, 2 apples, ½ grapefruit, and ginger (which is amazing for your tummy) all in one day! If I tried to eat all this I would be eating all day! Plus it tastes amazing! If you have any good recipes pass them along!


Juice, Juice, Juice

I love juicing! I started juicing after visiting with a friend who made an delicious juice for me and I have nothing but amazing things to say about it! I bought our juicer during my mom’s battle with cancer and started seeing the health benefits immediately. During the last few weeks my mom was alive I pretty much lived off of juice alone. It was the only thing I could keep down at the time and I was happy knowing I was at least getting some good nutrients.
I’ve tried 3 different kinds of juicers and am completely pleased with the one we bought. You can find the link by clicking here. My mother-in-law bought a slow juicer so I experienced that method of juicer from her and I’ll tell you the difference. The slow juicer had a difference consistency than our juicer did and my husband in particular was not having it. If you are one to like pulp you might not mind it so much, just remember that orange pulp and kale pulp are different and kale pulp is not for me! Some people argue that slow juicers give more nutrients and all I have to say to that is whatever floats your boat. No matter the difference, you are receiving SO very many nutritional benefits by juicing tons of yummy greens that if it’s easier for you to consume less pulp and more free juice I say a regular juicer is for you! But hey! To each his own!
Over the last past couple of years I’ve narrowed down my favorite juices and I’ll list some simple and yummy recipes below! I’m going to list them in single serving amounts but when I make juice I typically make enough for 3-4 glasses. I’ll post one big recipe (my go-to) at the very bottom. Cheers and happy juicing!
*Keep in mind: You can make some delicious fruit juices just remember the more fruit you add the more sugar you are consuming. Sometimes this makes for the perfect treat, but adding more greens than fruits makes for some delicious and extremely healthy juices. It’s all about balance!
Summer Beauty
1 bunch kale
2 handfuls spinach
¼ pineapple
2 apricots
1 small green apple, cored
½ inch ginger
The Basic Green
1 bunch kale
2 large handfuls spinach
2 stalks green chard
1 green zucchini
2 small green apples, cored
¼ inch ginger

Sweet Orange
1 orange
1/3 pineapple, peeled and cored
2 carrots
½ lemon, without the rind

Dance to the Beet
1 medium green apple, cored
2 small beets, cleaned thoroughly
3 large carrots
½ inch ginger
handful spinach
(Beets are tricky to juice, I strain my juice before serving to make sure its pulp free!)
Cheerful Cherry
3 large kale leaves
2 large leaves of romaine lettuce
1 green zucchini
2 stalks celery
1 large carrot
1 medium green apple, cored
handful cherries, pitted
½ peach

Family Sized Greens
4 green zucchini
1 large bunch (about 7-8) rainbow chard
2 bunches kale
3 cups spinach
4 stalks celery
5 small green apples, cored
2 peaches, seeded
½ large grapefruit
1 ½ inches ginger

*When storing fresh juice, store in glass jars (I used Mason jars) and fill to the tiptop so NO air is left in the jar. Seal with a lid and refrigerate up to a few days.