Monday, September 30, 2013

Meal Plan Monday

Hello, all!  Here we are starting a new week and forging our way into October :)  This is my favorite "cooking" time of year.  Foods are hearty and slow-cooked and pumpkin and apple are always on the menu.  I often have apple cider mulling on my stove as it is one of my families favorite treats.  Happy fall, y'all.

Monday: Taco Soup and Mexican corn bread
Tuesday: Chef salad and baked potato (game night)
Wednesday:  Spaghetti with steamed broccoli and garlic bread
Thursday:  Tomato Bisque and grilled cheese sandwiches (game night)
Friday: We are having the youth over for a little get together, so we are having finger-type foods....
Philly Cheese steak, chips, chocolate fondue with fruit and pound cake.  This is my responsibility.  Everyone will bring a little something.
Saturday: Chicken Chili, Pimento cheese, Pumpkin Cheesecake and sweet tea.  This meal will be shared with a gentleman from church who is getting ready to have a double knee replacement. 
Sunday: Eat out :)

Hope everyone has a yummy week! 

Friday, September 27, 2013

Life, continued...

Eep.  I know I promised another post with a picture, but I just haven't gotten it done yet.  We've had some family sickness issues to take care of.  Be patient with me, please :)

So, I was promising to outline my new skin routine, so I will try to do that now.

1.  Drink more water.  If I take into account my prescription meds and weight, I need to drink 100 ozs of water per day.  Rarely do I even get close.  That is ridiculous as I really love drinking water. Instead of tap of water filtered lightly by my fridge, I will be buying purified water.  Our skin needs to be hydrated and it's such a simple step to good health.

2.  Sweat more!  Recently, we bought a treadmill.  I have been working my way up to a reasonable level of fitness before hitting it hard.  I'm at the point where I can run a mile straight.  It's time to up the ante and really break a sweat.  Out body needs helps riding itself of toxins.

3.  Sleep more.  This is tough for me.  I average 4-5 hours of sleep per night.  I am going to aim for 7.  8 is ideal, but unrealistic for me and an unrealistic goal creates stress.  Stress=yucky skin.

4.  Replace harsh beauty products with natural products. 
I went to Target and bought BB toothpaste and facial cleanser.  I will be using organic coconut oil for lotion and conditioner and I recently ordered Tarte cosmetics.  If I am not leaving the home, I will not be wearing make-up.  For this month, I am going to forgo any extra hair products and all nail polish, scrubs etc.  Luckily, fall is here and my toes don't need to be perfect.  I think I will manage (I hope). 

This is my plan in a nutshell.  It is my hope that at the end of the month, my skin will be much improved.  I'll let you all know.

Wednesday, September 25, 2013


"I would like to live as a river flows, carried by the surprise of its own unfolding." John O'Donohue

I think the above quote is lovely and so true.  Life is quite the journey and often times, a wild, wild ride.  As I get older, I realize life is a bit like climbing a mountain...sometime our journey upward is easy and without pain and barriers, and sometimes, we fall back a little and lose our footing.  Our physical, metal and emotional conditioning is up to us.....we can neglect our health and suffer the consequences or we can protect God's temple. Once I realized that GOD is my safety net, it's easier for me to progress slowly and steadily.  God's "harness" is a simple formula of studying his word, spending time in prayer, and having faith.  This formula costs very little monetarily and is sure and true.  How glorious is that?  Doesn't mean it's easy, but it IS always available. 

Lately, I've been rereading some of my Jentezen Franklin books on Fasting.  I have fasted many, many times, but only for a day or two.  Jentezen starts each year out with a lengthy fast and miracles abound.  Spiritual and physical healings are commonplace.  While I am sure GOD is convicting me of this, I'm not sure what he wants/expects of me.  I have been prayerfully examining ways in which I can take better care of my body.  At the age of 33, my health is worse than most my age.  While a lot of my physical problems are hereditary, some are not.  My thyroid has been failing for years, I have moderately severe endometriosis, hypertension and skin issues.  I feel yucky a lot of days.  I'm not a naturalist by any means, but I have REAL concerns on popping pills on a regular basis....what can I do to help myself?  I have been praying.  So far, I feel like I need to work on the items I put on my skin.

Our skin is the largest organ of our body and can very accurately reflect our overall health.  How is my skin?  HORRIBLE.  In fact, it always has been.  I have the type of skin that looks like an oil slick two hours after bathing.  My hair is the same way.  I have been embarrassed by it all my life.  Because of the extreme oil, I have had constant break outs and have pores so massive I can stick a finger in them (well, almost).  Add in the inherited rosascea and dermatitis and I am a mess.  I have never been a huge product person.  While I've always worn make-up, I've never overindulged.  I sat down last night and listed all the products applied to my skin on a daily basis and it blew me away.  The sad thing is, nothing really seems to be helping.  I encourage each one of you to do the same.

Here's my list:

Finacea (Rosacea cream)
Presctiption hydrocortisone cream (dermatitis)
Curel Intensive formula for Eczema (don't have this condition, but my daughter does and I love this lotion)
Secret deodorant
Frederick Fekkai Apple Cider shampoo
Oil of Olay pore purifying facial cleanser (morning)
Simple sensitive skin wipes (evening)
Oil of Olay sensitive facial lotion (evening)
Ivory bodywash

I won't list all the brands as I have favorites all across the board
Eye Shadow

On Sunday's (church day) I add to this list:

OPI polish
Sally Hansen foot scrub
Sally Hansen intensive cuticle treatment
Mouse and hairspray

As I listed this, I couldn't believe it...seriously.  All of this is leaching into my system on a daily basis.  No matter how good my diet is, I am quite sure I have been reversing any positive effects from whole foods.

So what am I gonna do about it?  This gal has a plan.  Join me tomorrow for my plan and (gasp), if I get up the nerve, I will take a pic of my skin without make-up.  Shew!

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Meal Planning

Since Monday was Labor Day, I gave myself a free day and most of my meal were eaten out.  Eating out is welcomed once weekly, but more than that is no good for us.  Frankly, we don't have many meal options locally and all have allergies and sensitive tummies.  We do better when meals are prepared at home.  My meal plan this week will be Tuesday -Friday.  Hope y'all can find a bit of inspiration.  Every single night of my week involves a church or sporting activity, so my meals reflect the need for easy prep and clean-up ;)


Sautéed chicken breasts with Adobo seasoning, fat-free refried beans (made yummy and healthy with coconut oil instead of lard and a bit of melted cheese on top), fresh salsa and chips.


Crusty baked potatoes and chef salad


Tomato bisque and grilled cheese sandwiches.  During busy weeks I always try to serve soup one easy and can be reheated for lunches as well.


Friday's menu will a bit larger than normal.  We are having church leadership over for a meeting/meal.I expect 8-10 extra people.

Lasagna, fresh sourdough bread, large Caesar salad, baked potato casserole and fresh apple cake for dessert.  Thankfully, our leaders are our closest friends and I don't have to worry about being fancy.  To be honest, we will probably eat off paper plates!  Sweet tea will be served in red solo if I have anything to say about it :)

Happy eating foodie friends!

Simple Woman's Daybook

Hard to believe another week has rolled around!  Hope everyone enjoyed Labor Day.  I have a lovely weekend full of productivity and family two favorite things :)

From my window:  SUNLIGHT!!!  The gray skies have finally been replaced by glorious sunlight.  After a rainy (much needed) weekend, I can literally see my grass growing before my eyes.

From the kitchen:  Clean and tidy.  Nothing cooking away at this time; the only scent is my Scentsy warmer. Lunch will be chicken salad and watermelon. 

I am reading: Lisa Wingate's "A Thousand Voices" and Martha Stewart's Cooking School (scored at Goodwill yesterday for 50 cents!!).  Both books are very engaging.

I am listening to:  Music is always going on in my house in some form.  Right now CMT is on for random noise.  Lady Antebellum is playing.

I am thinking: Wondering how I will get babygirl's allergy shots this week.  We have soccer practice tonight and Thursday and a game Saturday.  Because of her asthma, she cannot get a shot on a day of practice or game playing.  Makes it so hard.  The life of a mama!

I am wishing:  For a bigger vehicle.  I always made fun of people who, after having their first child, immediately bought a big wasteful.  Yet, I would love to have something big enough to haul 7.  I constantly need to haul more than 5 ppl now....we looked at a Buick SUV yesterday and loved it.  We'll see. 

Around the home:  Just finished painting my hallway and all interior doors.  Will hang pics and quilt rack back up this week.  Next chore:  Painting the living room....Saturday we will be heading to the Louisville Zoo.

I am sharing:  A simple, healthful recipe.  A follower ask for this some time ago and thought I would share today...

Cabbage and Smoked Sausage

1 lb of smoked sausage (beef or turkey both work well), cut into 2 inch links
One large head of cabbage, roughly chopped
1/2 stick butter
salt and pepper
2 TBSP Chipotle Tabasco sauce

This is so simple.  I start with a dutch oven and throw the first three ingredients in the pot.  Add enough water to fill pot halfway.  NO need to cover the cabbage as it will cook down a great deal.  Add pepper and tabasco sauce.  Cook on low to medium heat until cabbage is VERY tender (that's the Southern way).  Add salt to taste at the end off cooking.  I have found that adding salt in the beginning will keep cabbage from getting as tender.  Plan on at least 30 minutes cooking time.  I suggest serving with fried potatoes and cornbread. 

Healthy version:  Use Turkey sausage and light margarine.  I do this often and it turns out well.  A few red potatoes can be added as well.