Research has revealed that meditation can actually change our brain. People in one study showed changes in gray-matter density in parts of the brain associated with memory, learning, sense of self, empathy, and stress. My kids learned to meditate in elementary school and it was really good for them. I am really excited that more schools are employing these simple tools to help kids focus.
The secret is the simplest homemade dressing.
1 part balsamic vinegar
1 part apple cider vinegar
Garlic (fresh is best, minced from a jar will work too)
I just mix all of this up in a pickle jar and keep it in the fridge.
Finally, I tell my kids that THE MOST important thing about cooking is to do it with love. From planning, to shopping, to plating it up and praying… everything infused with love, tastes better.
There are tons of recipes out there for homemade GF pizza dough but I admit, the number of flours required to manage decent baked goods has proven a bit much for me thus far. Big props for the food goddesses out there that make some fab crusts! I opt for UDI’s. I also opt for lots of fresh veggies, almond cheese and organic meat. My last yummy trick is to make a sauce with pureed veggies and herbs. Tomatoes, carrots, pumpkin, basil, oregano, garlic…
Here we have a salad made from a store bought rotisserie chicken, apples, cranberries, grapes, mayonnaise (very little) AND… pickled Jalapeños!
We made sandwiches and headed for the park. The criteria for an acceptable meal in my household is tasty, health and fun. This definitely passed the test. It was DELICIOUS.
So, if you think this is a food blog, you’re about to be sorely disappointed. I am not a food diva. I’m a mom. A busy mom with a son who has some food restrictions. I have learned to LOVE to cook for my kids. They are such healthy, happy and willing, taste testers. It sort of turns the potentially stressful mealtime into something I look forward to.
You will not find exact measurements here. But you will find the ingredients I used and hopefully be inspired to experiment with what you have in your own kithcen.
Bread (I used Gluten Free)
Eggs (I use 2 whole, 2 whites)
Cinnamon (my kids really like it so I used about a teaspoon)
Milk ( I used Coconut, I might use, Hemp or Almond as well. By all means if you do dairy at home use it) about a tablespoon
Oil (Again I used Coconut, which adds a flavor that my kids love but butter or safflower would work too)
Scramble up the eggs, add cinnamon and milk. Dip the bread in so it’s coated well on both sides. Add oil into a frying pan and cook egg dipped bread. SIMPLE.
The fruit was made from some plums (I’ve done similar with berries) that were on their way out. (about 4 small) I cut them up. Added some red wine, honey, maple syrup, nutmeg and cinnamon. The sauce and plums reduces to the consistency of chuncky cranberry sauce. I’d made it the night before and stored it in the fridgde. In the morning I put it in a pan added some diced apples (I had 2 small green) a tad more syrup. Cooked till the apple were warm but still crumchy. Served atop the French Toast along side some turkey sausages.
This meal takes under 30 minutes and is always a huge hit. I can serve it for Breakfast or Dinner with cheers from the judgdes.
Being in the kitchen, making easy, healthy drinks and snacks really empowers my kids both physically and emotionally. We’ve been at it for years with soups, salads, movie snacks and shakes. Anyway, Trinity is 10 and soooo thrilled so many of my Facebook pals liked her idea.
Here is her recipe:
Trinity’s purple passion shake. Coconut milk, blueberries, bananas, agave and a pinch of cinnamon. Ice blended to frosty perfection.
So the kids are off from school and what do LA families do for fun?
Make movies! They are now addicted to filmmaking. They’ve come up with ideas, location scouted and we’ve made a dozen more! Not a bad way to spend a few hours interacting with each other and technology. More importantly, it’s a way to share with my kids, some of the kinds of things I do for work. They know I work on the computer but making the movie, processing and sharing it, helps them see the steps I take. Yes my job is fun!
Do you share your work with your kids? Do you use technology to share your life or business with others. If so, how?
SOCIAL MEDIA TIP: This was made using two iPhone apps. Videolicious for the interviews and Action Movie for the car drop. Compression is lousy upon direct upload to youtube BUT it is much more realistic and fully hilarious on my phone.
I have adopted this practice in my home. At dinner or lunch, the kids and I will encourage one another with positive feedback. My daughter knows she has a smile that lights up the sky (from me) and that she’s a great a helper (from little brother). My son knows how awesome his heart is (from me ) and how much fun he is (from big sister).
My kids love each other and still fight like cat and dog. With siblings 16, 17 and 20 years my senior, I didn’t have this experience first hand but from what I understand of siblings so close in age, this sort of combat is natural. Time out for positive feedback really helps us get in touch with the good things we think and feel about each other and about ourselves.
Words are POWERFUL! As my kids have gotten older, conversations have gotten deeper. My son has said “Mom, you feed us everyday and the main ingredient is always love. I know because I feel it in my body.” My daughter has said to her brother “When you were at your sleepover, I didn’t have anyone to play with and I felt sad. It made me think of how much I love you…”
Two things inspired this post. One A tweet by @SusanPreston “#RelationshipTip: When was the last time that you told your partner how much they truly mean to you?” And Two, a Facebook group called, Keep them alive through pictures and memories, that takes time to remember the people we love that no longer occupy a physical body.
Tomorrow is not promised, so today I’m going to take some time out tor encourage some folks around me. Are there coworkers, clients, family members or partners that might benefit from knowing the special qualities you see in them?
I remember hearing Paula Deen talk about how when she was struggling with agoraphobia, she always took refuge in her kitchen. Now, Paula and I are pretty far apart in lifestyle but I can SO relate. There are some days, when having worked all day, although I’m exhausted, I still have to be a mom… It’s at these times that the kitchen seems the only place where I can find rest for the mind, fuel for the body and peace for the spirit.
There’s something about “build your own” meals that is so easy. My kids love it. It’s interactive and creative but not overwhelming. At least not for me.
The kids make their own gluten and dairy free pizza’s and pile on veggies. I’m lucky cause my kids are great eaters for the most part. They will consume most vegetables so I usually just finely chop whatever I have.
Here we used:
Ready made crusts from Glutino.
Chopped mushrooms, yellow peppers and zucchini with olive oil and oregano
Chopped tomatoes with basil, garlic and olive oil
Pre-shredded Almond Mozzerella
Pepperoni and some left over Prosciutto
Served with a mixed green salad out of the bag. We do the same with burgers and nachos.
I take pictures of EVERYTHING. When I’m tempted to criticize myself for all the things I haven’t been, I have evidence of my successes. Smiles, hugs, kisses and healthy bodies are evidence of the moments that magic appears out of thin air.
I’m tired and stressed but today I gave my best and I will sleep like a rock tonight…
Love from your heart
Optional for love is optional but if you choose hate you will never use love
Very much people use love
Everything love is everything
Spread love. Keep it. Enjoy it. Love it. Love is in your heart. It fills your body with happiness. It makes you feel special and good. Love is what you need. Love is what you want.
I often talk about writing as a therapeutic modality and this was an amazing example of a young spirit expressing itself through words.
So… when was the last time YOU were overwhelmed by the magnitude of love?