Fall Garden From Seed – Done!

Today I finished my fall garden, and this is the first time that I started from seed. I planted seeds in small containers (5 oz paper cups ūüôā ) about a month ago. Some grew, some did not. Between using organic seeds I got for a great deal on Amazon, re-purposed soil and crates, compost and a good bit of free burlap, I was able to complete my garden for $40. I may be spending more if my seedlings/seeds don’t make it and have to resort to buying plants, but I had to try from seed at least once. My fingernails are still dirty, I met some cool little critters, and got a lot of vitamin D. These are just the beginning of the benefits of my little garden. (The lush green leaves in my garden are my crazy, takin’ over the whole place, sweet potatoes. Those have been there for a couple of months, and I am anxious for them to be ready to harvest.)

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Step 1 – Line crate with burlap and fill 2/3 way up with organic soil

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Step 2 – Add a layer of compost

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Step 3 and 4 – Add another layer of organic soil and plant seed/seedling/plant (and water!)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Finished!

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My “what is where” chart

 

 

 

 

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Potassium – Anna’s Research Project

I’m very proud of my 10 yr old, Anna, working hard to complete her first project of the school year. I learned some great facts about potassium. Keep the added salt at bay and increase your intake of potassium-rich foods!

High-potassium-food

Potassium,‚Äč ‚Äčthe‚Äč ‚Äčnineteenth‚Äč ‚Äčelement‚Äč ‚Äčon‚Äč ‚Äčthe‚Äč ‚Äčperiodic‚Äč ‚Äčtable,‚Äč ‚Äčis‚Äč ‚Äčan‚Äč ‚Äčessential‚Äč ‚Äčmineral‚Äč ‚Äčfor‚Äč ‚Äčthe human‚Äč ‚Äčbody.‚Äč ‚ÄčPotassium‚Äč ‚Äčwas‚Äč ‚Äčdiscovered‚Äč ‚Äčin‚Äč ‚Äč1807‚Äč ‚Äčby‚Äč ‚ÄčHumphry‚Äč ‚ÄčDavy.‚Äč ‚ÄčHow‚Äč ‚Äčdoes‚Äč ‚Äčpotassium‚Äč ‚Äčhelp‚Äč ‚Äčus as‚Äč ‚Äčhumans?‚Äč ‚ÄčIt‚Äč ‚Äčis‚Äč ‚Äčan‚Äč ‚Äčelectrolyte.‚Äč ‚ÄčElectrolytes‚Äč ‚Äčproduce‚Äč ‚Äčelectricity‚Äč ‚Äčand‚Äč ‚Äčmove‚Äč ‚Äčelectrical‚Äč ‚Äčsignals throughout‚Äč ‚Äčyour‚Äč ‚Äčbody.‚Äč ‚ÄčFor‚Äč ‚Äčyour‚Äč ‚Äčbrain,‚Äč ‚Äčnerves,‚Äč ‚Äčand‚Äč ‚Äčmuscles,‚Äč ‚Äčand‚Äč ‚Äčfor‚Äč ‚Äčthe‚Äč ‚Äčcreation‚Äč ‚Äčof‚Äč ‚Äčnew‚Äč ‚Äčtissue, these‚Äč ‚Äčelectrical‚Äč ‚Äčsignals‚Äč ‚Äčmust‚Äč ‚Äčtake‚Äč ‚Äčplace.‚Äč ‚ÄčIt‚Äč ‚Äčalso‚Äč ‚Äčhelps‚Äč ‚Äčto‚Äč ‚Äčregulate‚Äč ‚Äčthe‚Äč ‚Äčamount‚Äč ‚Äčof‚Äč ‚Äčwater‚Äč ‚Äčin‚Äč ‚Äčyour‚Äč ‚Äčbody and‚Äč ‚Äčkeeps‚Äč ‚Äča‚Äč ‚Äčhealthy‚Äč ‚Äčblood‚Äč ‚ÄčpH‚Äč ‚Äčlevel.‚Äč ‚ÄčYour‚Äč ‚Äčbody‚Äč ‚Äčmust‚Äč ‚Äčperform‚Äč ‚Äča‚Äč ‚Äčbalancing‚Äč ‚Äčact‚Äč ‚Äčbetween‚Äč ‚Äčpotassium and‚Äč ‚Äčsodium,‚Äč ‚Äčanother‚Äč ‚Äčelectrolyte.‚Äč ‚ÄčWhen‚Äč ‚Äčone‚Äč ‚Äčof‚Äč ‚Äčthese‚Äč ‚Äčelectrolyte‚Äč ‚Äčlevels‚Äč ‚Äčgoes‚Äč ‚Äčup,‚Äč ‚Äčthe‚Äč ‚Äčother‚Äč ‚Äčone‚Äč ‚Äčgoes down.‚Äč ‚ÄčWhile‚Äč ‚Äčwe‚Äč ‚Äčhave‚Äč ‚Äčto‚Äč ‚Äčhave‚Äč ‚Äčsodium‚Äč ‚Äčin‚Äč ‚Äčour‚Äč ‚Äčbody,‚Äč ‚Äčwe‚Äč ‚Äčcan‚Äôt‚Äč ‚Äčhave‚Äč ‚Äčtoo‚Äč ‚Äčmuch‚Äč ‚Äčof‚Äč ‚Äčit.‚Äč ‚ÄčToo‚Äč ‚Äčmuch sodium‚Äč ‚Äčcan‚Äč ‚Äčcause‚Äč ‚Äčmany‚Äč ‚Äčillnesses‚Äč ‚Äčor‚Äč ‚Äčdiseases,‚Äč ‚Äčand‚Äč ‚ÄčAmericans‚Äč ‚Äčfail‚Äč ‚Äčto‚Äč ‚Äčregularly‚Äč ‚Äčeat‚Äč ‚Äčfresh‚Äč ‚Äčfruits‚Äč ‚Äčand vegetables,‚Äč ‚Äčwhile‚Äč ‚Äčeating‚Äč ‚Äčfoods‚Äč ‚Äčprepared‚Äč ‚Äčand‚Äč ‚Äčflavored‚Äč ‚Äčwith‚Äč ‚Äčtoo‚Äč ‚Äčmuch‚Äč ‚Äčsalt.‚Äč ‚ÄčThis‚Äč ‚Äčkeeps‚Äč ‚Äčthe‚Äč ‚Äčlevels‚Äč ‚Äčof potassium‚Äč ‚Äčdown.‚Äč ‚ÄčTherefore,‚Äč ‚Äčit‚Äč ‚Äčis‚Äč ‚Äčimportant‚Äč ‚Äčto‚Äč ‚Äčkeep‚Äč ‚Äčthe‚Äč ‚Äčlevels‚Äč ‚Äčof‚Äč ‚Äčpotassium‚Äč ‚Äčup‚Äč ‚Äčby‚Äč ‚Äčeating‚Äč ‚Äčand drinking‚Äč ‚Äčthe‚Äč ‚Äčright‚Äč ‚Äčfoods.

Potassium‚Äč ‚Äčis‚Äč ‚Äčthe‚Äč ‚Äčthird‚Äč ‚Äčmost‚Äč ‚Äčprevalent‚Äč ‚Äčmineral‚Äč ‚Äčin‚Äč ‚Äčthe‚Äč ‚Äčhuman‚Äč ‚Äčbody.‚Äč ‚ÄčThe‚Äč ‚Äčlevels‚Äč ‚Äčof‚Äč ‚Äčpotassium are‚Äč ‚Äčcritical‚Äč ‚Äčto‚Äč ‚Äčlife‚ÄĒif‚Äč ‚Äčpotassium‚Äč ‚Äčlevels‚Äč ‚Äčget‚Äč ‚Äčtoo‚Äč ‚Äčhigh‚Äč ‚Äčor‚Äč ‚Äčtoo‚Äč ‚Äčlow,‚Äč ‚Äčthe‚Äč ‚Äčheart‚Äč ‚Äčand‚Äč ‚Äčnervous‚Äč ‚Äčsystem‚Äč ‚Äčcan completely‚Äč ‚Äčshut‚Äč ‚Äčdown.‚Äč ‚ÄčPotassium‚Äč ‚Äčis‚Äč ‚Äča‚Äč ‚Äčkey‚Äč ‚Äčto‚Äč ‚Äčkeeping‚Äč ‚Äčkidneys‚Äč ‚Äčhealthy‚Äč ‚Äčespecially‚Äč ‚Äčin‚Äč ‚Äčthe prevention‚Äč ‚Äčof‚Äč ‚Äčkidney‚Äč ‚Äčstones.‚Äč ‚ÄčIt‚Äč ‚Äčalso‚Äč ‚Äčkeeps‚Äč ‚Äčthe‚Äč ‚Äčbrain‚Äč ‚Äčand‚Äč ‚Äčmuscular‚Äč ‚Äčtissues‚Äč ‚Äčhealthy.‚Äč ‚ÄčPotassium plays‚Äč ‚Äča‚Äč ‚Äčkey‚Äč ‚Äčrole‚Äč ‚Äčin‚Äč ‚Äčkeeping‚Äč ‚Äčthe‚Äč ‚Äčbody‚Äč ‚Äčhydrated‚Äč ‚Äčand‚Äč ‚Äčcan‚Äč ‚Äčbe‚Äč ‚Äčhelpful‚Äč ‚Äčin‚Äč ‚Äčpreventing‚Äč ‚Äčproblems‚Äč ‚Äčsuch‚Äč ‚Äčas muscle‚Äč ‚Äčcramping‚Äč ‚Äčand‚Äč ‚Äčnausea‚Äč ‚Äčand‚Äč ‚Äčeven‚Äč ‚Äčarthritis‚Äč ‚Äčand‚Äč ‚Äčdepression.

Potassium‚Äč ‚Äčis‚Äč ‚Äčmainly‚Äč ‚Äčfound‚Äč ‚Äčin‚Äč ‚Äčplant-based‚Äč ‚Äčfoods‚Äč ‚Äčwith‚Äč ‚Äčthe‚Äč ‚Äčaddition‚Äč ‚Äčof‚Äč ‚Äčsome‚Äč ‚Äčfish‚Äč ‚Äčand‚Äč ‚Äčdairy products.‚Äč ‚ÄčHere‚Äč ‚Äčare‚Äč ‚Äčsome‚Äč ‚Äčgreat‚Äč ‚Äčsnacks‚Äč ‚Äčthat‚Äč ‚Äčhave‚Äč ‚Äča‚Äč ‚Äčgood‚Äč ‚Äčamount‚Äč ‚Äčof‚Äč ‚Äčpotassium:‚Äč ‚ÄčSweet‚Äč ‚Äčpotatoes‚Äč ‚Äčwith regular‚Äč ‚Äčpotatoes‚Äč ‚Äčor‚Äč ‚Äča‚Äč ‚Äčmixture‚Äč ‚Äčof‚Äč ‚Äčdried‚Äč ‚Äčfruits‚Äč ‚Äčsuch‚Äč ‚Äčas‚Äč ‚Äčapricots,‚Äč ‚Äčpeaches,‚Äč ‚Äčand‚Äč ‚Äčfigs.‚Äč ‚ÄčYou‚Äč ‚Äčcould‚Äč ‚Äčalso have‚Äč ‚Äčwatermelon‚Äč ‚Äčto‚Äč ‚Äčbring‚Äč ‚Äčup‚Äč ‚Äčthe‚Äč ‚Äčlevels‚Äč ‚Äčof‚Äč ‚Äčpotassium.‚Äč ‚ÄčLentil‚Äč ‚Äčhummus‚Äč ‚Äčwith‚Äč ‚Äčcarrots‚Äč ‚Äčis‚Äč ‚Äča‚Äč ‚Äčgreat choice.‚Äč ‚ÄčWhat‚Äč ‚Äčabout‚Äč ‚Äča‚Äč ‚Äčbanana‚Äč ‚Äčand‚Äč ‚Äčorange‚Äč ‚Äčjuice‚Äč ‚Äčsmoothie‚Äč ‚Äčor‚Äč ‚Äčblueberry‚Äč ‚Äčoatmeal?‚Äč ‚ÄčSome‚Äč ‚Äčmeals‚Äč ‚Äčthat have‚Äč ‚Äčhigh‚Äč ‚Äčlevels‚Äč ‚Äčof‚Äč ‚Äčpotassium‚Äč ‚Äčare:‚Äč ‚Äčspaghetti‚Äč ‚Äčand‚Äč ‚Äčmeatballs‚Äč ‚Äčwith‚Äč ‚Äča‚Äč ‚Äčspinach‚Äč ‚Äčsalad,‚Äč ‚Äčsalmon‚Äč ‚Äčwith‚Äč ‚Äča side‚Äč ‚Äčof‚Äč ‚Äčblack‚Äč ‚Äčbeans‚Äč ‚Äčtopped‚Äč ‚Äčwith‚Äč ‚Äčavocado‚Äč ‚Äčslices.‚Äč ‚ÄčThere‚Äč ‚Äčis‚Äč ‚Äčalways‚Äč ‚Äča‚Äč ‚Äčspinach‚Äč ‚Äčsalad‚Äč ‚Äčmixed‚Äč ‚Äčwith‚Äč ‚Äčbeets and‚Äč ‚Äčtossed‚Äč ‚Äčwith‚Äč ‚Äčan‚Äč ‚Äčorange‚Äč ‚Äčvinaigrette.‚Äč ‚ÄčAnother‚Äč ‚Äčmeal‚Äč ‚Äčyou‚Äč ‚Äčcan‚Äč ‚Äčcreate‚Äč ‚Äčis‚Äč ‚Äča‚Äč ‚Äčbean‚Äč ‚Äčand‚Äč ‚Äčfennel‚Äč ‚Äčsoup.‚Äč ‚ÄčA sweet‚Äč ‚Äčtreat‚Äč ‚Äčis‚Äč ‚Äča‚Äč ‚Äčnice‚Äč ‚Äčway‚Äč ‚Äčto‚Äč ‚Äčend‚Äč ‚Äčyour‚Äč ‚Äčmeal,‚Äč ‚Äčso‚Äč ‚Äčyou‚Äč ‚Äčcan‚Äč ‚Äčenjoy‚Äč ‚Äčyogurt‚Äč ‚Äčwith‚Äč ‚Äčchopped‚Äč ‚Äčapricots‚Äč ‚Äčand/or peaches.‚Äč ‚ÄčIf‚Äč ‚Äčyou‚Äč ‚Äčare‚Äč ‚Äčan‚Äč ‚Äčathlete‚Äč ‚Äčor‚Äč ‚Äčan‚Äč ‚Äčactive‚Äč ‚Äčperson,‚Äč ‚Äčone‚Äč ‚Äčof‚Äč ‚Äčthe‚Äč ‚Äčbest‚Äč ‚Äčways‚Äč ‚Äčto‚Äč ‚Äčstay‚Äč ‚Äčhydrated‚Äč ‚Äčis‚Äč ‚Äčby eating‚Äč ‚Äča‚Äč ‚Äčbanana.‚Äč ‚ÄčStudies‚Äč ‚Äčhave‚Äč ‚Äčbeen‚Äč ‚Äčdone‚Äč ‚Äčthat‚Äč ‚Äčshow‚Äč ‚Äčfood,‚Äč ‚Äčlike‚Äč ‚Äčbananas,‚Äč ‚Äčare‚Äč ‚Äčbetter‚Äč ‚Äčat‚Äč ‚Äčkeeping‚Äč ‚Äčyour performance‚Äč ‚Äčlevel‚Äč ‚Äčup.‚Äč ‚ÄčThey‚Äč ‚Äčeven‚Äč ‚Äčbeat‚Äč ‚Äčsports‚Äč ‚Äčdrinks‚Äč ‚Äčwhich‚Äč ‚Äčhave‚Äč ‚Äčtoo‚Äč ‚Äčmuch‚Äč ‚Äčsugar‚Äč ‚Äčand‚Äč ‚Äčtoo‚Äč ‚Äčmuch sodium‚Äč ‚Äčwhich‚Äč ‚Äčmakes‚Äč ‚Äčthe‚Äč ‚Äčpotassium‚Äč ‚Äčand‚Äč ‚Äčsodium‚Äč ‚Äčlevels‚Äč ‚Äčunequal.

Since‚Äč ‚Äčyou‚Äč ‚Äčknow‚Äč ‚Äčwhat‚Äč ‚Äčpotassium‚Äč ‚Äčis‚Äč ‚Äčand‚Äč ‚Äčhow‚Äč ‚Äčit‚Äč ‚Äčhelps‚Äč ‚Äčyour‚Äč ‚Äčbody‚Äč ‚Äčfunction,‚Äč ‚Äčyou‚Äč ‚Äčcan‚Äč ‚Äčwatch what‚Äč ‚Äčyou‚Äč ‚Äčeat‚Äč ‚Äčand‚Äč ‚Äčmake‚Äč ‚Äčsure‚Äč ‚Äčyou‚Äč ‚Äčare‚Äč ‚Äčgetting‚Äč ‚Äčfoods‚Äč ‚Äčthat‚Äč ‚Äčare‚Äč ‚Äčhigh‚Äč ‚Äčin‚Äč ‚Äčpotassium‚Äč ‚Äčand‚Äč ‚Äčeating‚Äč ‚Äčless‚Äč ‚Äčsalty food.‚Äč ‚ÄčNow‚Äč ‚Äčgo‚Äč ‚Äčget‚Äč ‚Äčsome‚Äč ‚Äčpotassium‚Äč ‚Äčflowing‚Äč ‚Äčthrough‚Äč ‚Äčyour‚Äč ‚Äčbody.‚Äč ‚ÄčGrab‚Äč ‚Äča‚Äč ‚Äčbanana‚Äč ‚Äčand‚Äč ‚Äčwater‚Äč ‚Äčfor your‚Äč ‚Äčafter-school‚Äč ‚Äčactivity!

Sand Circuit

Our beach day earlier this week turned into a mini-circuit workout for me. I didn’t get my normal morning workout in, and my schedule was a bit frazzled, so I took advantage of the kids’ beach time to squeeze in some exercise. I did a series of 5 full push-ups followed by 20 walking lunges in the soft sand. I ended up with 20 push-ups and 60 lunges and then joined the kids in their sand castle building fun. That ended up with me being a moat digger, therefore I got in a little extra arm workout ūüėČ So when you don’t think you can get exercise into your day, stay active and keep these things in mind:

  • Take advantage of where you are

  • Take advantage of the time you have

  • Act like a kid

 

Ultimate Chunky Peanut Butter

ChunkyNutBotterThis is one of my go-to snacks each day. I love chunky peanut butter, but I want to get more than just peanuts into my daily diet, so I’ve been creating my own chunky nut butter. I make a large batch of this, and then I put a big dollop of it in a jelly mason jar. It is then ready for me to take (along with a spoon) for an easy snack on a busy day. You can use any variety of nuts and seeds and spices.

  • 2 cups of organic peanut butter

  • 1/4 cup pumpkin seeds

  • 1/4 cup chopped walnuts

  • 1/4 cup hemp seeds

  • 1/4 cup chia seeds

  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger

Method 1:  Place all the ingredients into a food processor and pulse until the nuts and seeds are mixed.

Method 2: Place peanut butter into a large glass bowl. Microwave for 30 seconds and stir. Microwave another 30 seconds and add all the remaining ingredients and stir until mixed.

Store the chunky nut butter in a air-tight container in the refrigerator.

Banana Ice Cream¬†– 3 Ingredients

Banana Ice Cream

  • Frozen banana chunks (about 7-8 bananas)

  • 2 tablespoons liquid (water or milk)

  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

  • Melted peanut butter and chocolate chips (optional)

Place the frozen bananas, liquid and vanilla in a food processor. Blend several minutes until the bananas are completely whipped and creamy. We like to serve ours in mugs with melted peanut butter drizzled over the top and a sprinkling of mini chocolate chips. This makes about 4-5 servings.

This is Joel from 4 years ago enjoying banana ice cream. It has been a long-standing “sweet” staple in our home, and it is still asked for.

joelBananaIceCream

 

Some of our other favorite cool treats:

  1. “Slurpees”

  2. “Frostys”

  3. Mango Pineapple Smoothie

  4. Mocha Almond Smoothie

Food is Thy Medicine 

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This meal of Wild Alaskan Salmon (3 oz), sauteed mushrooms (2 cups before cooking) and broccoli (1 cup) is one I eat every Monday. Due to a certain medication that I am on to treat an on-going eye condition, I need to follow up with 5 mg of pantothenic acid (Vitamin B5) 24 hours after the medicine is taken. While I do not like using medicine to treat the body, I know there comes a time when one has to use it to assist the body in healing. So rather than relying on another lab-produced pill (that was prescribed for me), I did my research and found what foods would give me the amount of B5 that I need. I chose the foods I liked from that list and adjusted the serving sizes to make sure I get what I need. In addition to the 100% of the Daily Recommended Value for B5, it also has the DRV for these vitamins:

  • More than 100% of B12

  • More than 100% of Vitamin D

  • More than 100% of Vitamin C

When you eat a diet high in plants with a small side of a nutrient-rich protein, you are building up the respiratory and nervous system, your muscles and bones, your immunity, and all other processes your body does in order to remain healthy. Go for more green and have a happy body!

 

 

 

 

Orange Vs Green

An orange has a very slight lead per gram when it comes to vitamin C versus cauliflower, BUT cauliflower wins over an orange because it also has a good deal of vitamin K and B vitamins. With that said, I have been watching my cauliflower in my garden slowly grow its big, green leaves, and finally it has a head of cauliflower peeking out. The long, dark green leaves are gorgeous, and so how could I let them go to waste? I always do a quick research before I eat anything that is atypical, and tonight my Googling confirmed my suspicions- the greens are edible! So, for dinner, I made myself sauteed cauliflower greens with fresh garlic and mushrooms in coconut oil. That dish is now completely consumed and my immune system has had a little boost!

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Candy-free Easter Egg Hunt

If you are tired of filling plastic eggs with unhealthy and costly candy and little trinkets for the annual Easter egg hunt, here is what we do:

Fill the eggs with Monopoly money and allow the kids to do the hunt. The child who ends up with the most money, wins the grand prize. That means that someone can find the most eggs but still lose, and it gives the younger ones still an opportunity to win. I like to take an ordinary egg and stuff it with a few $500s as the “golden egg”. We typically do a $10 gift card to a kid-friendly spot, and the kids aren’t overloaded on sugar or leaving little toys all over. Happy hunting and counting!

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Sugar Consumption – Be in the Know

While the American Heart Association recommends that your daily intake of sugar be no more than 10% of your total daily calories, the World Heath Organization actually has recently stated that is should be only 5% of your daily caloric intake. The chart below is a great tool to help you understand how much 10% really is. Shoot for less though (as recommended by WHO) to avoid the negative effects of sugar such as the risk of diabetes and heart disease, weight gain, premature aging, mental fogginess, the feeding of cancer cells, and even arthritis.

The average American adult is consuming over 20 teaspoons of sugar a day, and the average American child is being given an average of 19 teaspoons of sugar each day – that’s 6x what is recommended by the AHA!

Make it a point to stick with natural sugars found in fruit and vegetables and avoid or limit all the added sugars. Your body and mind will thank you for it!

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10 Servings of Veggies and Fruits for Longevity

Eat 10 portions of fruit and veg to cut risk of early death

I LOVE this new research. 10 servings of veggies and fruits a day create an amazingly healthy and disease-fighting body. From morning to night, that is what I eat. And with a condition that keeps my white blood cell count low, I should get sick often. My family often comments on the fact that mom is “never” sick. It is indeed a rare occasion that I get a virus or bug of any kind, and I have always comment back with “That’s because of all the vegetables I eat.” So start the day with veggies and end it on a sweet note with fruit!

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