Lemon blueberry pops with a bonus! 

Hello Friends!
What, I am posting 2 days in a row?  I know, miracles do happen 🙂
Spring in really in the air here in Texas and it is making me crave all sorts of lemony things!
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Lemons are so vibrant and add amazing flavor to so many foods!  I am popping in quick today to share with you a sweet smoothie pop recipe I whipped up this weekend! I have used a lot of popsicle molds over the years and they have been really hit and miss.  When I was at Ikea a few weeks ago I grabbed a set and so far they have not disappointed! (not an affiliate link, just what I have found that I love)
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Blueberry Lemon Pops

Ingredients

  • 1/2 banana
  • 1 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk
  • 1/2 blueberries (fresh or frozen)
  • Juice from 1 large lemon
  • 1 scoop unflavored Vital Proteins

Directions

  1. Add banana and almond milk to a blender, mix well.
  2. Add additional ingredients and mix well.
  3. Pour evenly into each popsicle mold. Add lids.
  4. Freeze for at least 2 hours.
  5. Enjoy in the sunshine!

And a bonus, you can use this recipe for a pick-me-up smoothie too!

 

May you be filled with joy and health!
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Still searching…

Hi there friends! Happy Wednesday!
How has your first week of spring been going?  It has been a bit of a roller coaster over here in my little part of the world.  If you missed it last week, I did a little update on my health.
I received my results back from my doctor.  Honestly it was hard at first to receive the news.  Not because anything was really terrible. In fact, most of this round of tests came back normal or good, except 1.  And that really means nothing.  Nothing was ruled out and nothing was diagnosed.  So now more in depth blood work will be ordered within the next few days to a week.  My doc is out of the office a few days this week, so I have been slightly obsessively checking my email to see if she sent another message.
When I first saw the results I was really frustrated, and I still am in a way.  I know that this is going to be a bit of a process to really narrow things down and figure out exactly what is going on, but I had some hope that we would find some things out sooner rather than later.  I have to admit that my hope was a bit dashed.  I am really thankful for some sweet friends who poured love and support into me and reminded me that we are on the right path, even though it might feel discouraging at the time.
Despite feeling discouraged I do still have many things I am thankful for and grateful for, and I am working on staying focused on those things!

The ability to continue working out and having some kick butt workouts this week!


Some fun recipe testing and yummy meals!

Constant gifts from my nanny kiddos and beautiful sunsets!

My ability to paint and decorate- Working on the guest room and making my first ever purple wall!

And my supportive husband, my loving friends and family, my church family, my social media friends (you), and of course my doctor who is doing all she can to get to the bottom of all these health issues.

Being thankful is a much better option that staying hopeless!

May you be filled with joy and health!
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Golden Chili 

Happy Friday dear friends!!!!

What a week it has been! Spring has def sprung here in Texas. The weather was gorgeous this week with lots of sunshine and breezes!

If you missed it yesterday, I posted a bit of a long overdue health update. There will hopefully be some answers in the next week or so!!

Despite it being the first day of spring this past week, I got an inkling for chili as I saw so many pics of snow from my friends and family who still live up north!

Today for Foodie Friday I am linking up today with Farrah from Fairyburger and  Annmarie from the Fit Foodie Mama for a Food Blogger Love themed week! So I want to share with you a few chili recipes from some of my awesome blogger friends!

Chili Powder Free Slow Cooker Turkey Chili (Gluten Free, Bean Free) from Susie at Suzylyfe
Best Chili Recipe Ever from Kalee at Sorey Fitness
Jackfruit Chili Recipe from Debbie at Coach Debbie Runs
Fall Chili and Cornbread from Samantha at Simply Samantha
Slow Cooker Vegetarian Chili from Erika at MCM Mama Runs
Hot Mama’s White Bean Chicken Chili from Farrah at Fairyburger
Chipotle Turkey and Sweet Potato Chili from Dixya at Food Pleasure and Health
Smoky Bean Chili from Jill at Jill Conyers
Hearty Vegetable Lentil Chili from Jessica at Nutritioulicious
Crock Pot Award Winning Vegetarian Chili from Julie at Running in a Skirt

Take some time to browse and save these awesome recipes!!

As I have learned more about spices and their health properties, I have come to love turmeric! I have begun to add it to my soups, smoothies, salads, and even when I make some desserts!  Even the Hubs has noticed some of the benefits of turmeric in his own life!

Golden Chili

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Ingredients

  • 1 lb organic ground turkey, cooked to crumbles
  • 2 large cans organic crushed tomatoes
  • 1 small can rotel
  • 3 cans organic tri-blend beans (or 1 of each- black, kidney &a pinto beans), drained and rinsed.
  • Spices to taste (1-2 tsp) Himalayan salt, paprika, chili powder, black pepper, cumin
  • 3 TBS + extra for toppings turmeric

Directions

  1. In a large Dutch oven or slow cooker, add all the ingredients. Still well.
  2. Cook for 8-12 hours on low heat.
  3. Enjoy with a sprinkle of turmeric on top 🙂

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Make sure you check out all the amazing ladies and their awesome mouthwatering recipes!!

Do you have an awesome recipe you’d love to share? Link up with us on Fridays for our weekly Foodie Friday posts! (Co-hosted by Annmarie, Farrah + Esther )

  • Please link back to the co-hosts, and comment/share at least a couple other Foodie Friday posts! Don’t just leave your link and run away! :O
  • Please only link up recipe posts! 🙂
  • Join us next week for some citrus recipes.


May you be filled with joy and health!
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Health update…

Hello friends!

Before I get into the latest health update, I want to say thank you to everyone who has sent kind words, prayers, encouragement and support.  I am beyond blessed to have so much wonderful support in my life from so many equally wonderful people!

For years I have felt and known that something was off in my body.  I have been to many different doctors and have been told I have thyroid issues, I need to lose weight, that I am normal and it is in my head, that I need to work out more (and if you know my lifestyle you know that I don’t need to workout more), eat less (again, this doesn’t need to happen), have bariatric surgery, or take traditional medications.  Doctor after doctor didn’t really listen to what I was dealing with and just wanted to put a bandaid on the problem.  For the past 18 months I did some more of my own research and made many changes to my life to see if that would help.  Although I did find some relief and see some positive changes, they didn’t last long even when I continued with the new patterns of health and wellness.  To say I have been frustrated has been an understatement!!!
Some of the challenges I have faced are fatigue, sleep issues, not seeing positive changes in my weight, memory issues, depression, hormone imbalances, infertility and more!
Back in January I happened across a doctor who seemed like she could be a great fit.  I mean, it was worth a shot at this point! I called and was able to get an appointment a few days later.  We had our initial visit and we chatted about my history and concerns for over 2 hours! She was super concerned and shocked that I had not been tested for many things that seemed like a doctor would test for considering my symptoms and issues.
After our initial visit she decided to send me home with a sleep monitoring kit.  It was a bit awkward to sleep with, but ruled out sleep apnea as an issue.
It has been just over 2 months since my initial visit and I was finally able to go in for more testing today.  It was a bit of a pain this morning, literally.  My veins do NOT like needles!
Even after drinking TONS of water yesterday, I was still dehydrated this morning.

So we after several attempts I was sent off to a different lab and they were finally able to find my veins.  Bonus- I did not pass out like normal!

I am super impressed my arm doesn’t look too bad yet! Normally it is a hot bruised mess after blood work!

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First set of testing is in the works!
Thank you for coming along for the ride and again, for all the support.
I will update when I know more!

 

May you be filled with joy and health!
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Sweet & Tangy Balsamic Chicken Salad

Happy Friday friends! And Happy St. Patrick’s day too!
It has been a bit of a crazy week and exciting because my husband released his first single yesterday!  I am beyond proud of him! It has been a long road to get to this place, but we made it! A true labor of love!

To celebrate I decided to make a salad similar to one I have had a few times at a local place! This salad mixes sweet and tangy together with a bit of a crunch as well!  It is a party in your mouth y’all!

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I am linking up today with Farrah from Fairyburger and  Annmarie from the Fit Foodie Mama for a Copy Cat themed week!

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Sweet & Tangy Balsamic Chicken Salad

Ingredients

  • 1 lb organic chicken breast, cooked and shredded.
  • 1 head organic romaine lettuce
  • 1 cup each organic blueberries, blackberries & raspberries
  • 1 large organic gala apple, cored and chopped into bite sized pieces
  • 1/2 cup organic chopped pecans
  • 1 bottle organic balsamic vinaigrette dressing

Directions

  1. Place shredded chicken in a large bowl.  Add enough dressing to cover the chicken as a marinade.
  2. Wash the berries and lettuce.  Chop lettuce into bit size pieces.
  3. Mix together the lettuce, marinated chicken, fruit & pecans together in the large bowl.
  4. Add additional dressing if desired.
  5. Enjoy!

Make sure you check out all the amazing ladies and their awesome mouthwatering recipes!!

Do you have an awesome recipe you’d love to share? Link up with us on Fridays for our weekly Foodie Friday posts! (Co-hosted by Annmarie, Farrah + Esther )

  • Please link back to the co-hosts, and comment/share at least a couple other Foodie Friday posts! Don’t just leave your link and run away! :O
  • Please only link up recipe posts! 🙂
  • Join us next week for some Food Blogger Love recipes.

May you be filled with joy and health!
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Scalloped sweet potatoes 

Hello friends!  Thank you for joining me this week for National Eating Disorder Awareness week!  It holds a special place in my heart as it has been something that has affected my life very deeply.  In case you missed the other posts, you can check them out here, here and here 🙂
As we head towards the first weekend in March I have been thinking about heritage.  Since my husband is part Irish, it is fun to think about different Irish traditions.  When I lived in Chicago it was fun to see the river turn green and participate in some fun Irish themed races!  Along with fun traditions are fun foods!  With some of the health testing I have coming up, my food has been pretty limited.  I got a little creative in the kitchen and made a slightly different version to the traditional Irish scalloped potatoes!
img_2703I am linking up today with with Farrah from Fairyburger and  Annmarie from the Fit Foodie Mama for a Heritage themed week!

Since I have an abundance of sweet potatoes, they were my inspiration!

Scalloped Sweet Potatoes

Ingredients

  • 1 large organic sweet potato
  • 2 large organic gala apples
  • 1/2 cup + 1 TBSP organic coconut oil
  • 2 TBSP organic cinnamon
  • 1/2 TBSP organic coconut sugar

Directions

  1. Pre-heat oven to 350*
  2. Grease med (I used 9.25″ x 7″) baking dish with 1 TBSP coconut oil
  3. Using a food processor, slice sweet potato and cored apples into thin slices.
  4. Heat remaining coconut oil till melted and add in the cinnamon and sugar.
  5. Using a lasagne technique, layer the slices of sweet potato and apple. Drizzle the coconut oil mix between layers. End with the sweet potatoes and a the remaining mixture of coconut oil and spices.
  6. Bake for 35-40 min, or until the sweet potatoes are soft.
  7. Enjoy!

Make sure you check out all the amazing ladies and their awesome mouthwatering recipes!!

Do you have an awesome recipe you’d love to share? Link up with us on Fridays for our weekly Foodie Friday posts! (Co-hosted by Annmarie, Farrah + Esther )

  • Please link back to the co-hosts, and comment/share at least a couple other Foodie Friday posts! Don’t just leave your link and run away! :O
  • Please only link up recipe posts! 🙂
  • Join us next week for some pack your lunch recipes.

May you be filled with joy and health!
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You are not alone!

Hi friends!
Thank you all for such encouraging and uplifting comments this week! Spreading awareness about eating disorders is so important to me.  I have lost too many friends & loved ones to these devastating diseases.  They are not a joke or a phase that someone goes through.
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There are many myths about eating disorders, who they affect, and what they may look like.  A few things I have learned over the years may also help your view and understanding of eating disorders. ed8960c7dcf1d7be6fc2d0e57c8219cd67

  • Eating Disorders do not discriminate, they affect both men and women, all different ages, race, religion, status, relationship status & socioeconomic status.
  • Environment and genetics can influence the root of someone’s eating disorder.
  • Eating disorders are more than anorexia or bulimia; others include binge eating disorder, orthorexia, compulsive exercise, night eating, pica, EDNOS.
  • You can’t tell by someone’s size whether they have an eating disorder.
  • Recovery IS possible.

Thankfully I also have many friends who have been supportive and also willing to share their own stories.  I am inspired and encouraged by my beautiful friends! They have reminded me not to give up on my own journey!

*Note- some names have been changed for privacy*

Here are the questions my lovely friends answered for me

1. How old are you/they?
2. How long have you/they suffered?
3. How has it impacted your/their life?
4. Are you/they currently in recovery? If so, how long?
5. What advice would you/they give to someone who feels they are struggling?

How old are you? 38
How long have you suffered? 20 years. It started before I was a teenager.
How has it impacted your life? While I was actively eating disordered, I thought I was one of the “lucky” ones with no negative effects. Now that I’ve been in recover for a number of years. As I’ve gotten older, I’ve been dealing with arthritis, heart issues, my teeth crumble, and I’ve had other health issues.
Are you/they currently in recovery? If so, how long? YES!! A decade (I never thought freedom from this was a possibility)!
What advice would you/they give to someone who feels they are struggling? You are worth recovery. You are worth the fight. Recovery is not an even plane. There are really good days, and really bad days. How you respond to bad days is everything. You are loved. Let those in your life help you, support you, love on you. You are not a failure, or ugly, or flawed, or alone. You are ENOUGH. Recovery is possible, and you deserve it. ❤
-Ali-

I am 34 years old.
I am not sure when it truly began for me but sometime as a very small child…definitely elementary school.
I have always had a love-hate relationship with food. Even though I have developed “healthier” views of myself and food over time, I still feel like it controls much of my daily thoughts. it is a life-long battle.
I have never done any real recovery program. The most effective way I have found to keep a handle on my weight is being a member of weight watchers for many years. It has held me accountable and helped teach me some healthier eating habits.
I would advise someone who is struggling to find someone that can talk to. I have no one. I have become more open about it over time but still feel shame sometimes. It would have helped to have someone to talk to or mentor me through my body image and eating issues.
-Sami-

I am 34.
I have struggled for 21 years.
No one really knows. Secretive lifestyles are very prevelant. I hide most feelings about everything. My metabolism is shot. People think you just want attention so in turn you are a liar.
Not currently in recovery
Recovery Advice: Reach out. Reach out. Reach out. And be careful with yourself.
-Megan-

I was age 19-22 when in the midst of my ED.
I severely suffered for 3-4 years with restriction and overexercise, and still at times have waves of struggle but I now know how to better handle them 🙂
Honestly it has made me 100 TIMES stronger…it was terrible in the midst of the struggle but my faith in my Lord is stronger, my relationship with my husband is better, my relationship with my body is better…I was blessed to get help quickly and that likely played a huge role
Not currently recovering
DON’T BE AFRAID TO ASK FOR HELP. ALWAYS PRAY. Know this isn’t something wrong with you…it is an illness, you are perfect just the way you are!

-Sarah-

Age: 30
I began to engage/exhibit behaviors at age 10. Admittedly, sometimes find myself slipping into habits today.
I never felt like I could eat normally around people in the midst of it, so I would restrict, and binge/purge later. When people knew, I felt as though they were watching me and so I became more secretive about it.
I consider myself in recovery, though somedays I might slip up and “forget” to eat, or simply eat too much to avoid feeling.
I would say I began the journey nine years ago.
Seek help, talk to people that you love and trust about your thoughts. There is so much support out there and available… use it! Ask for accountability – and throw away the scale!

-Jessica-

35 years
I was 18 when I started purging through exercise and vomiting. But looking Back strange food habits started much earlier. Extreme calorie restricting and constant vomiting of anything I ate (bulimia mixed with anorexia)took up three years of college and two hospital and rehab stays.
From 18-22 was my worst. Recovery started at 22 and took until about 32 to be really in full recovery.
It really held me back from reaching my potential in my field. I put all my focus into food and then into staying alive and recovery that there wasn’t much time to focus on how to advance my career. I lost a lot of friends and trust. I would completely isolate myself just to binge and purge and would lie to my family and friends. Also constantly being the girl with the mental illness gets exhausting for those around you. I cost my family tons of money not only for the food that was wasted but for the tremendous medical and counseling bills. And long term health worries. I’ve had to have repeat heart exams, dental work(I was lucky that mine were minor cavities) and the ever constant heartburn and worry that I have done irreversible damage to my esophagus that won’t burden me until later in life.
Three years. But There is still an occasional time I will vomit if my life stressors are out of control. I don’t consider it a relapse. The difference being it’s an isolated event and no longer pushes me to repeat the behavior. Maybe happens once every six months.
My advice is this. Everyone struggles with something. Having an eating disorder was just my battle. But NO ONE you know has it all together so stop feeling alone and letting guilt literally eat away at you. YOU are not your eating disorder but but it is a part of you. It is telling you something so listen to it, own it, take charge of it by fighting through the uncomfortableness. A lot of recovery says to separate the ED from you but I think it’s the opposite. Embrace it, learn from it dare I say love it because it is a part of you and love the bad with the good. Recovery for me was a long process, much longer than I thought it would take. Your recovery pace is perfect for you and for what you need to learn from this process. Physically and mentally it was hard for me to stop restricting and purging, until I figured out that the key to avoiding the purge was to sit through the binge and try to bring back awareness there. Stopping the restricting was all about letting go of my safe foods. Really adding back in healthy fats was critical as well as lots of loving affirmations.

-Katie-

I’m 33
I suffered for about 10 years
It totally changed my life. I feel as though I missed out on my entire teenage years and early adulthood. It ruined the dreams I had of going to college and really enjoying life… It wasted my relationships, my time, my money.
I’ve currently been in recovery for a little over 8 years…. 🙂
To someone who feels they’re struggling: you’re not alone! Talk to people, journal, whatever it takes… The worst thing we can do is be silent. Once you begin your journey of recovery, you will have days where it feels like you’ve slipped too far back into it and there really is no help but that’s the furthest thing from the truth. Hold on to the little victories and don’t give up!
-Deanna-

32
I have had issues with food/weight since I was abused as a child, around age 6, so about 22 years.
I have gone from anorexic to bulimic to over exercising to orthorexia to secret binge eating.  It destroyed relationships (3 different engagements broken), caused many health issues, infertility, deep shame and hatred of myself.
I have been in focused recovery for about 5 years, although I have had moments of weakness where I still binge or try to burn off all the calories I consumed.
I would advice getting help from professionals, finding someone to be accountable with. Find the root issues that lead to the unhealthy thoughts and behaviors and deal with them.  Also doing things that show love to yourself because you are so worth it!
-Elisabeth-

28
About 12 years.
It severely impacted my life for the fact that I spent months in treatment. Thousands on treatment. Spent years away from school and in low paying jobs due to not functioning up to par. I didn’t have many relationships. My health was deteriorated. My pregnancy suffered. I lost a baby. It had severe effects on my mental wellbeing.
Currently in recovery about 3.5 years.
You have to have a good support system within treatment team and “normal” people such as friends andFamily. It is the hardest thing that can ever be done but is the most worth it over anything in life. There is a possibility of full peace within the mind. There can be silence. A time where you don’t have negative talk. A time where you can eat “bad” foods without feeling guilty. And it is worth it!
-Nicole-

I’m 18 years old
I’m suffering since I was 15
So this is a big question I guess..I can’t measure but it ruined my life every single day..She (bulimia) took my smile my energy my hope and my love for life! I hospitalized twice!I lost days and months at school then my first year at university..I lost friends,relationships and months being bloated, fatigued, full of soreness lying on my bed and praying to die..I could write books to describe it…
Yes, I’m in recovery since October of 2016..After I lost my university I understood that it is completely out of control..The problem is that in the past my attempts to find experts had failed..that’s why it took me so many years to start recovery..However I’m finally in the right place for sure…I have some up and downs but recovery isn’t a straight line.
I would advise to ask for help! That’s the most important thing! The ED’s voice tells you that you can control yourself alone and you can find your balance without any help! That’s a real trap! Speak and act no more secrets no more lies!
-Zenia-

30 (but 31 in a couple weeks 😊)
20 years if you count both the times of intense struggle and the times of strong recovery. It’s an ebb and flow.
It’s affected my life in so many ways. I’ve lost relationships. I dropped out of college several times to go to treatment. Too many lost opportunities to count. Countless days/weeks/months spent isolating in order to avoid inevitable social meals.
I’m in recovery and have been solid for about 4 years. I’ve had other pockets of recovery here and there, but this is the longest I’ve had continuous strong recovery.
Never give up. You never know when you will turn a small corner that leads to a small victory that leads to a bigger victory that all add up to freedom. Also, as hard as it is, allow yourself to be open and vulnerable. Speaking your struggles and fears aloud removes so much of the strength and power from them.
-Julie-

31
14 years
It was all consuming and made important things seem unimportant.
Yes 🙏🏼 2 years 🙌🏼
Cry out to God and ask Him to help you– the burden is too heavy to carry yourself. Ask Him to take it all and help you see yourself as He sees you!
-Tricia-

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So friends, remember that you are NOT alone! Whatever you may be struggling with, you are amazing, you are not defined by your struggles, and you are worth getting help! I am always here if you need someone to chat with, or you can always email me or message me on social media!

May you be filled with joy and health!
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