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Must Do: Creative Spillage Workshop

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UPDATE: You can now find me at www.healthynbalanced.com.

 

Today I was able to take part in a Creative Spillage Workshop. Maybe you are wondering what in the world is a Creative Spillage Workshop?

It is truly an experience like I have never had before. I really wasn’t sure what to expect since I have no experience in painting or paint classes and I don’t consider myself to be artistic in that sense. However when I walked into Laura’s Creative Spillage studio all fears and anxieties quickly fell to floor as I entered what I felt like was a “safe” place. You know what I’m talking about…one of those places where you feel like you could kick off your shoes, pull your hair up into a funky ponytail and kick back with your closest girlfriends without fear of rejection or judgement.

This class was about more than just painting. It really made you look at your fears, anxieties, and what Laura calls the Creative Monster that somewhere between childhood and adulthood has stopped you from being creative and expressing yourself.

I was able to confront my Creative Monster of “There’s always someone who is better than you.” or what I call my “Comparison Monster”. There have been so many times in my life that I have not used the talents that God has given me because I knew that there was someone who could do it better. There have been a lot of times that I never even tried to better my talents, whether it was through taking piano lessons or participating in a drama competition or trying to hone a new talent (like painting), because I knew I would never be as good as so-and-so.

So before we ever put our paintbrushes to the canvases we talked about those monsters so that they would not be holding us back from being creative when we were painting.

Then she let us run loose! We had full access to canvases, paints, papers, and other supplies. At the end of the class, everyone walked away with a painting in one hand and victory over that creative monster in the other. For me, I also found a new love for painting.  It’s so fun and relaxing…especially without that monster on my back. 🙂

I want to encourage you if you are in the Nashville area to check out Laura’s blog-Creative Spillage for more info on when the next workshop will be and sign up! Start saving your pennies now. It is totally worth it!

Note: All above opinions are my own and I was in no way paid to endorse the workshop. I just reallllly believe this is a great opportunity for any lady in the Nashville area.

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Fat, Sick, & Nearly Dead- A Review

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I had been hearing a lot about the documentary Fat, Sick, & Nearly Dead so I decided to sit down and watch it…finally. I must say, it is worth taking the time to watch.

It’s not your average boring documentary. Although it’s focus is on the journey of 2 men doing a juice fast, it is filled with great information on the importance of fruits and veggies in our diet.

One statistic they quoted was that the average American’s diet is 60% processed food! WOW!  I knew we ate a lot of junky junk, but 60%?!? We are just begging to die from diet-induced diseases.

It was also sad to hear the views of different people that they interviewed on the streets. Most people know that they need to eat better, but just don’t want to give up the junk. How sad! 😦 I’m not judging them, because I certainly have moments of weakness myself, but I was amazed to hear people be so brutally honest.

Although I wouldn’t do a 40 or 60 day juice fast, it is a great idea to do at least a 7-10 day juice fast to detox your body. It’s also not a bad idea to have juicing as a part of your daily food intake. Whether it’s to replace a meal, or just to get your day off on the right foot.

I highly recommend that you watch this documentary. It’s jam-packed with information and it is an inspirational story.

Looking for more information? Check out this list of simple facts to consider about fruits and veggies.

 

 

Almond Butter vs. Peanut Butter

As I was munching down on my apple and almond butter today, I had a co-worker ask me what the difference was between almond butter and peanut butter and thus, this little post was born. 🙂

Personally, I eat all kinds of nut butters, including peanut butter. However, my nut butter of choice is definitely almond butter. (FYI- my favorite brand is Barney butter-yum yum yummy)

I figure there may be quite a few out there with the same question so I wanted to give you the low-down on what the main differences are.

1. Peanut butter has a higher mold content…this is because peanuts have a high mold content (which is why a lot of    peeps have peanut allergies.)

2.Most peanut butter (unless it is the more expensive organic/natural brands) are loaded with hydrogenated oils and sugar, among other things-it has a pretty lengthy ingredient list. Almond butter has a short ingredient list. (For example Barney butter has almonds,evaporated cane juice,palm fruit oil, & sea salt.)

3. Almonds (and almond butter) are an alkaline food. Most other nuts, including peanuts are acidic. The amount of alkaline food vs acidic food in our diet greatly determines our health. It is vital that we maintain a balanced ph level in our bodies to remain healthy. Click here for further explanation of alakaline/acid foods & our bodies.

4. Both almond butter & peanut butter (remember-natural/organic-not the junkie-junk filled stuff we grew up on ;)) are beneficial to our health. Click here to see a short list of the different health benefits of both.

5. Cost-Obviously almond butter is more expensive than peanut butter however it is worth it if you are trying to maintain a healthy diet and stay away from junky-junk in your food. 🙂

Note: This is not professional diet advice. This is just what I have learned along the way. Also, I am not paid in anyway for my opinion here. 🙂

Rainier Cherries truly are Nature’s Candy

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I am not a cherry fan. They are just about the only fruit that never calls my attention. However, as I was shopping at Publix the other day I saw these little cuties-the rainier cherry. The box says they are nature’s candy. I was quite skeptical since they are afterall—cherries.

Boy was I wrong! These bad boys are sweet as they come and they do taste like candy! The only downfall is that they do need to be pitted but the seed is so small you can just eat around it. 🙂

Apparently these are only available here in TN for a few weeks out of the year.

If you are looking to escape from the same ole strawberry, banana, or apple snack-give rainier cherries a try! You won’t be disappointed!

By the way, the are on BOGO right now at Publix (about $3.00 per carton) and you don’t have to buy 2 to get that price.

Note: Cherries are part of the dirty dozen so whenever possible buy these organic. 🙂

Teeccino-Coffee Replacer???

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I am a HUUUUUGEEEE coffee fan. However, I am a picky coffee-drinker. I have to have “the good stuff”. “The good stuff” does not include Folgers or Maxwell House. I would say that coffee is one of the few things that I am willing to spend a few extra dollars on in order to get a quality product .:)

Whole Foods Organic Costa Rican coffee is my favorite at the moment! You get to scoop the freshly roasted beans out of this huge barrel and put them in the grinder and enjoy the smells of fresh coffee as you do it!

On my current eating plan, I cannot drink coffee unless I am “cheating”. So almost always, I will “cheat” a few times a week in order to enjoy a hot cup of joe with whole organic milk and turbinado sugar! It’s delicious but on all the other mornings of the week, I miss my hot cup of joe. It’s not the caffeine-I kicked that habit a few months back. It’s the hot, dark beverage part of it that I miss -and no, I don’t like to have hot tea in the morning-yuck!

So I decided to give Teeccino a try. Teeccino is made with carob pods, barley, and chicory root and then dates, figs, almonds, etc are added in depending on which flavor you choose.

The benefits of Teeccino are the following:

*Naturally Caffeine-free

*Loaded with Antioxidants

*Non-acidic

*Gluten-free

*Pre-biotic

I bought the Vanilla Nut Teeccino because I was a little scared of what the original would taste like. I have to say it was pretty good-once I added milk to it. (But remember I don’t drink coffee black either.)

However, when you try it out DO NOT expect it to taste like coffee-because it doesn’t. But it is a great option if you are looking to cut out your caffeine or can’t handle the acidity of regular coffee.

Although this cannot replace my coffee, I will be using it a few mornings a week to meet my need for a “warm cup of somethin'”

I also made it at work and had a few co-workers (and my parents) try it out! Overall it was a big hit!

Here are some of their comments:

“I love it! It makes me feel relaxed. I love hot cups of cream drinks. I could leave coffee for this. But, I need a good book and some fluffy pillows.”-Cassendra

“I couldn’t replace my morning coffee with this. But I could replace my afternoon Earl Grey tea with it.”-Josh

“It smells & tastes weird. I am not sure if I want to go get another cup or not.”-Paul

“That is good!”-Dad

“I like it! I am going to go buy some.”-Rob

Tired of Passionless Prayer? Want To Pray Consistently and With Purpose?

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Reading the Bible daily has never really been a problem for me but I have always struggled with having consistent daily prayer times.  Although I have been a Christian since I was 7 years old and have been heavily involved in ministry since I was a teenager, my prayer life has been some what like a rollercoaster ride. Recently I started reading the book “The Power of Praying Together” by Stormie Omartian and Jack Hayford. It has drastically changed my prayer life. I have not only been consistent with daily prayer but my prayers have become more purposeful. Not to mention my prayers have been much more than the standard “Lord bless this day. Bless my family. Give my guidance.” I actually feel passionate about the words that I am saying to Him.

In the book, Stormie writes “I have found that it is much harder to stay focused in prayer when you have only a vague idea of what you are doing. If you have a plan of some sort when you pray, it helps you to get down to prayer more quickly and experience a more fruitful prayer time.”

She then lays out some steps that help you to get started and stay focused as you pray. Some days you may only pray for a couple of these things and other days you may be able to pray all of these things. Here are the steps in prayer that I have been following and that have led to a deeper, more purposeful prayer life.

1. Acknowledge God as your heavenly Father.

2. Praise God for who He is and for what He has done.

3. Choose one of God’s names, attributes, or characteristics and thank Him for being that to you.

4. Present your day to the Lord. (Be specific about how you want Him to guide you as you go throughout your day.

5. Present your body to the Lord. (Romans 12:1)

6. Confess your sins to God and ask Him to help you to live His way.

7. Ask God to help you speak only words that bring life. (Psalm 19:14)

8. Ask God for what you need.

9. Pray for God’s will in your life.

10. Pray for others

I want to encourage you to try this out for a week. I also want to encourage you to buy the book. I think it is out of print but it is still available on quite a few web-sites.

There is nothing like having an intimate relationship with God and in order to have that relationship, you have to spend time with Him. 🙂

Note: This is an unsolicited review. I do not receive any sort of compensation for sharing this with you.

Nota: “El Poder de Orar Juntos” está disponible en español aquí.

What’s so great about coconut oil?

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You may have been hearing the buzz lately about coconut oil and how great it is for you. With a bigger price tag than your average cooking oil, you may be asking–What’s so great about coconut oil?  There is plenty of information out there on all the benefits of it but I wanted to break it down for you here in a simple list:

1. Anti-bacterial

2. Anti-fungal

3. Anti-viral

4. Made up primarily of medium-chain fatty acids which means that it quickly burns as energy for your body instead of  being stored as fat (like the long-chains do).

5. Anti-parasite

6. High alkaline food (This is good considering that the majority of people here in the US have high acidic diets. Adding in foods that are alkaline will help to bring a balance to your diet.)

7. Helps regulate blood sugar

8. Helps prevent heart disease

9. Main component is lauric acid

10. High Heat Threshold (It doesn’t get rancid as quickly as other oils when used to cook.)

11. Aids in digestion

12. Great for your hair and skin! (Not to mention you smell like coconut after applying it!)

All that to say if you are looking to make one change today to improve your health then make the switch from vegetable or canola oil to coconut oil! You won’t regret it!

*Note: This is not the full list of the benefits of coconut oil but these are the main benefits that I have found.

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