Deep Abs and Arms Pilates Workout

Here’s my latest Pilates workout enjoy!

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Double Grain Protein Pot

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I love this super easy, one pot dish! It is so versatile and it keeps for several days in the fridge. Cooking various grains at one time allows you to save time AND to reap the benefits of both (or all) foods. As for millet and quinoa, they are both a great source of protein and magnesium. Magnesium helps cardiovascular health as well as muscle and bone health. And quinoa is one of the only main sources that contains all essential amino acids.

Double Grain Protein Pot

  • 3 1/2 cups water or vegetable broth

  • 1 cup millet

  • 1 cup quinoa

  1. Rinse and drain the grains.

  2. Bring the water or broth up to a boil and add in the grains.

  3. Cover, turn to low, and simmer for 20 minutes with the lid on.

  4. After 20 min., remove from heat.

  5. Let it stand, COVERED, for 10 min.

  6. Uncover, fluff with a fork and it’s ready to serve.

Add this to a green salad or add in your favorite veggies and seasonings or even fruit.

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Ecuador 2018

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I wanted to give you a brief recap of our trip rather than just sporadic pictures and brief captions. This is a long post, but I hope you take the time to read it. ❤

Our flight was delayed the Friday night we left, and we arrived late that night (actually well past midnight) into Quito and stayed in a hotel. The next morning, we began our road trip to the jungle camp with a stop at the Papallacta Hot Springs to enjoy the hot water yet chilly air. After some time in the springs and lunch, we headed to the jungle camp, Campamento Bautista UNPES. We settled into our humble abodes, and the interns (Americans) attempted (since they were in Spanish) to teach us the songs we would be singing for the week. That night, it rained for hours and caused some local flooding, and the waters of the Napo River behind the camp surged down stream with full force.

Sunday we had the pleasure of worshiping at Iglesia Cristiana Bautista Cristo El Unico Camino as the rains continued to fall, landing rhythmically on the metal roof. Later that day, the 260+ kids arrived at the jungle camp. We had our first evening of dinner and worship together. One of our jobs as the ministry team was to wash dishes…by hand…for 300+ people. I loved watching our kids (and I mean the Terry kids plus the other kids from our church) jump right in, wash, dry, and put away all those dishes. They served whole-hardheartedly without complaint. And there would always be several Ecuadorian kids that would jump in after the meals and help out too.

The kids were at camp Sunday afternoon until Wednesday after lunch. Our days consisted of worship times, recreation, swimming and free time and our meals together. Monday’s rec time was a muddy mess. Joel and I had the opportunity to do some inner tube tug-of-war, and I must confess that was the only time I fully stood under the COLD shower head! That night after worship, we had the comical experience of making 300 s’mores for the campers. Thankfully there were 34 of us and a handful of interns to help…I was the marshmallow puller-offer, and my hands were a sticky mess!

Tuesday morning, Anna woke up and didn’t feel well. After two vomiting incidents, some essential oils, activated charcoal, a few hours of sleep, and lots of prayer, she was completely better. Praise the Lord!  That evening was the talent show, and the girls and I, along with one of their best friends, were scheduled to perform a worship piece to “So Will I” (en espanol 😊). Anna was determined to do it, and we were able to dance. It was the first time I was able to perform alongside my girls in a dance choreographed just for His glory. The practices we had at home and the performance are times I will always cherish in my heart.

As camp drew to a close on Wednesday morning, Byron, one of the leaders there in the ministry, shared the Gospel with the kids. While it was spoken in Spanish, the message is still the same…Jesus is the only one who can rescue us from our sins, and we need the forgiveness offered through his sacrifice on the cross in order to have restored fellowship with God the Father. 34 precious kids gave their hearts and lives to Jesus. I had the privilege of holding tight to a young girl named Gabriela. She is forever in my prayers. These 260+ kids were from 22 jungle villages. May these kids go back and shine bright for Jesus! There is an awesome team set up to make sure these kids are discipled and connected with a local church. Ecuadorian kids have joy and energy beyond what we see here in the States. They have grateful hearts and a love for family that is to be admired.

That afternoon, after the kids left, we began our cultural experiences. We were able to see and feed some monkeys, take a boat ride up the Napo River and stop at a local village area where we were taught about their native plants and their medicinal uses, and see some of their traditional tools and methodology. Then we had the opportunity to take a 45 min hike up to see one of the local waterfalls. It wasn’t an easy hike, so about 2/3 of our group went. My girls had to stay behind because Anna hadn’t eaten anything the day before and still felt weak. And Aleyah somehow bruised the underside of her foot on the bunk’s metal ladder…craziness! But Scott and Joel and I took advantage of this opportunity. Wow! What a hike but what an exhilarating reward to jump into the falls once we got there! God’s creation- I love it!!!

That night, we went into Tena. It is interesting to see this city at night.  One of the things I learned on this trip is to make sure you experience and learn about the culture. I am by no means well-versed in Ecuadorian culture, but I have more of an understanding than what I started with.

Thursday we began our drive to Camp Chacauco in the mountains. We stopped at the Nate Saint house and stood in the same kitchen where the 5 wives of the Ecuadorian missionaries stood when they received the news that their husbands had been killed by the Waodani tribe. Now the home is a place where you can purchase goods made by local tribes, including the Waodani… God’s grace and forgiveness on display! From there, we went to El Diablo waterfall. This was another hike (shorter and not as difficult and a man-made trail) to an amazingly powerful waterfall. After our hike, we headed to the mountain camp and were greeted by Steve and Carol Thompson, the missionaries who began the work in the jungle and mountains about 30 years ago. His recounts of God’s provision and protection are a reminder of how great our God is!

Friday was another outside adventure. If you know me, you know I love being outside and being active, so these excursions were tight up my alley. We stopped at the local zip lining place and zipped over the rushing waters hundreds of feet below. Wow! So amazing to be able to do that! That evening, we headed further up the mountain (think giant bus on small, winding mountain roads…just a bit scary!) and ministered to about 20 kids from a small village. The two hours we spent there, along with my early morning quiet times in the jungle camp, were probably the most touching times for me. These people had very little, but had hearts ready to serve and ready to love. The pastor there finished the evening saying, “My hands are empty, but my God is big!” The Spirit pricked my heart and those words will forever resound in my mind. We were able to bless the kids there with new shoes donated by one of our members. Not one child complained about the color or style of the shoe. A few didn’t even get a pair because we ran out of those certain sizes. They will get shoes – their names and sizes were taken so they could be delivered later. But even the ones who didn’t have shoes in their hands never complained. They each were completely joyful to have shoes or know that some are coming. It’s been difficult to come back to the US and see the selfishness that we have, the sense of entitlement, and the discontent. Less is indeed more, and I’m praying I won’t forget that truth.

We spent one last night at the mountain camp, with its beautiful sights, sounds and smells. Saturday morning was our good-bye time. We left Patate and headed to Quito with some stops along the way. We had lunch at the historical Hacienda La Cienega and then headed to the equator. We spent some time there being touristy and then headed to the airport to catch our midnight flight that was delayed an hour. Despite tiredness, we continued to enjoy each other’s company and were happy to eventually arrive home safely. The 30+ hours of being awake (who can actually sleep on a plane?!) definitely deserved a Sunday afternoon nap and a couple more days of recovery. But it was SOOOOOO worth it. The eternal destination was changed for 34 souls, and those who went to minister also had hearts that changed. Thank you for your prayers! God is good and God is BIG! So now I’m asking Him, “What’s next? Bring it on Lord!”

 

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Peaches and (Cashew) Cream

Peaches are one of my favorite summer fruits. I have always loved adding them to my cottage cheese, but since I have switched to an anti-inflammatory diet, I no longer eat dairy. My solution: cashew cream! Super easy, slightly sweet and better than any dairy product available.

Cashew Cream

  • 1/2 cup raw cashews

  • 1/2-1 cup Water

Place cashews into a cup or bowl. Fill with water just until covered. Let soak about 2 hours (or longer). Place cashews and water into a blender. Add an additional 1/4 cup of water into the blender and blend on high. Add a little bit of water at a time to get the mixture turning and then to reach your desired consistency. The blending process should take about 3-4 minutes to get it creamy. Add cinnamon or vanilla extract if you would like. Place in a mason jar and store in the refrigerator or several days.

Artichoke and Avocado Salad 

Summer is here, and fresh, chilled salads play a key role in keeping us cool, hydrated and healthy. I love the crunch of the romaine and onions, the creaminess of the avocado and the tanginess of the artichokes. There is no recipe here- just a tossing of these veggies according to how much you want of each:

  • Chopped romaine

  • Avocado

  • Artichokes (frozen and thawed or olive oil marinated- not soy or canola oil since they are inflammatory)

  • Tomatoes

  • Purple onion

  • 1905 Salad Dressing

May your summer be filled with all that is fresh, yummy, and nutritious!

Pilates 30 Min Arms

Watch for the special visitor about half way through 🙂

Drink Daily

For an anti-inflammatory drink, I was using turmeric powder. However, I was informed by a friend how much more beneficial the extract is, so I switched over to using the extract (you can order it from Amazon or make your own with a few tablespoons of grated turmeric and 8-10 oz of vodka and let stand about a month before using). The ginger is an anti-inflammatory like the turmeric and the lemon is great for an alkaline gut. The frankincense and black pepper are a must for complete absorption of the turmeric into the body. This is a slightly sweet drink and very refreshing. You can make a large batch and keep it in the refrigerator.

My Favorite Homemade Salad Dressings

I often am asked about what I use for salad dressing. These dressings below are my “go-tos”. They are simple to make and last in the fridge for 1-2 weeks (if they aren’t used up by then!) Simply click the links to get to the recipes. Don’t forget that ripe avocados, hummus (olive oil based only please 🙂 ), a drizzle of vinegar, fresh herbs, or just loads of juicy vegetables also add creaminess, moisture and flavor to any type of salad. I hope you find these to be delicious and easy so you can forgo the store-bought bottles which often are loaded with bad oils (canola, soy, corn, and other GMO oils), preservatives and added sugar.

 

 

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Mulberry Mania

I have a mulberry tree. It is huge. Therefore, I have tons of mulberries this month which I absolutely LOVE! Besides the fact that they are perfectly sweetened, here are other reasons I love them.

Healthalicious Easter Side Dishes

When it comes to holidays, our family always serves buffet style, and everyone brings a dish or two to share. The best way to ensure that healthy choices will be available is to bring them yourself. My girls are making desserts, and I am making two sides. Here is what I will be bringing. Click on the links for the complete recipes. And both can be made the day before!

  1. Fajita Quinoa – I’m going to add fresh tomatoes and avocado to the top as well this time.fajitaquinoa

2. Cool Zucchini, Carrot, and Radish Salad – You can substitute any root vegetable here. This is definitely better once it has had a chance to sit overnight.

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