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carol@inkwellcoaching.com

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February 18, 2021

One of the Healthiest Fruits on the Planet

We are on week #33, counting down with my expectant friend. As some of you know from experience, she is getting pretty uncomfortable. My prayer for he

February 11, 2021

Fun with Jicama

At week #32, baby is a jicama in size. That’s right, a jicama. Starts with a J and sounds like an H. Jicama is a globe-shaped root vegetable with pa

February 4, 2021

Sumo, Coconut, and the Birth Month

If you’re an orange lover, I have some REALLY GOOD NEWS! The Sumo are here. Sumo oranges, that is. I wrote about them last year. If you missed that

January 28, 2021

5 Reasons Why Your Snack Bar May Not Be Your Friend

In a recent conversation, the topic of cereal/granola/protein bars came up. They appear to be a healthy snack, especially for a very busy person who i

January 21, 2021

Getting Back on Track

Baby size at 29 weeks is a butternut squash. And, like last week’s eggplant, butternut squash is technically a fruit. Since I wouldn’t care to eat

January 14, 2021

The Surprising Truth about Eggplant, and a Recipe

A large eggplant. That is the vegetable size of a baby at week #28. Oh, but wait just a minute. An eggplant is actually a FRUIT because it grows from

January 7, 2021

My Least Favorite Vegetable and a Challenge

At week #27 baby is the size of… …a head of cauliflower. Most of you know that I do not care for this vegetable. I’ve tried. Truth is that cauli

December 31, 2020

Cheers to Scallions and a New Year

At week #26, baby is the size of a scallion. The first question that popped into my head is: What’s the difference between a scallion and a green on

December 24, 2020

The Hope and Excitement of a Baby

A bit of background for my new readers: I’m taking the produce journey along with my good friend who is expecting. As we track the progression, we l

Are You Ready for Christmas?

 

It is December 22.  Have you been asked that question recently?  How did you respond?  Did the question evoke any specific emotion, or some anxiety perhaps?  I have been asked this numerous times in the past few days.  Well, am I?

In the traditional sense, no.  I still have shopping, wrapping, decorating, baking, cards…yes, the whole Christmas routine… to complete pretty darn quick.  So, here I sit, listening to Josh Groban sing Christmas songs to me.  Sweet!  The traffic is nuts, so I decided I should take some time away from the outer world.  Can you relate? 

Things eventually seem to get done when you need them to.  Have you noticed that?  Whether you are having guests for dinner or planning a huge party, things just seem to fall together, right on time.  Being ready for Christmas falls into this same category.

However, my thinking is a bit different when I hear this question.  I believe Christmas is something we need to be ready for everyday.  To quote my poem, “Choices,” we would be wise to “carry the spirit of Christmas throughout the year.”  Think what a different world it would be if we did!  What if we prepared for each day by deciding to be kinder and more compassionate to everyone that crosses our path?  How would we behave if we truly believe that what goes around comes around?  Would we do anything differently if we knew that Jesus had it in His day planner to show up tomorrow?  Well, would we?

A nice winter’s nap sounds quite appealing right about now, but I must put forth a bit of effort to bring about some Christmas cheer.  Guess I had better finish those cards….

“For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders.  And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.”   Isaiah 9:6  NIV

Healthy Ideas from December 12, 2011

Here are some highlights from last evening’s Healthy Living Exchange that focus on a topic that is huge this time of year (and all year!):  FOOD

Decide now what your health will look like as you enter 2012.  We have several weeks to make a plan that will serve us toward better health, rather than simply allowing the holiday season to have its way with us.

1.  Decide on the weight you would like to be the first week of January.  Be a realist.  If you are on a course to shed some pounds, continue on your set plan with that picture in your mind.  To maintain the weight you currently own, set a course to keep you there.  Make the decision now to eat balanced meals and healthy snacks, keeping an attack on the Christmas cookies to a minimum.  This does not mean you have to avoid every delicious treat that passes your way.  This does mean that you must make the choice now on how you plan to handle those special times. 

2.  Exercise.  Make an appointment in your day planner like you would any other appointment.  Have scheduled times to walk with a friend or meet at the gym for a workout.  Accountability is huge here.  What a great gift for someone you care about and yourself! 

3.  Be nice to you.  Set aside a bit of time, perhaps 15 minutes or so, each day to do something that makes you happy.  Read a great book, take a nap, soak in the tub, write Christmas cards, you get the idea.  Drink plenty of water (add lemon/lime if it is not your favorite) and get plenty of rest.  How can you be the light if your candle is about to be extinguished?  Answer:  You can’t.

Our protein shake of the month is chocolate mint.  To make it, I took some original almond milk, a few ice cubes, Arbonne chocolate protein, Breyer’s Mint Chocolate Chip ice cream (small scoop), and a handful of fresh spinach.  (No, you do not taste the spinach unless you use over 2 cups.  Lots of healthy benefits by adding spinach to any smoothie or shake.)  Swirl in the blender.  Delicious!  To cut calories, you could substitute a bit of peppermint extract for the ice cream.  If you prefer to avoid protein powder, try a bit of cocoa powder, keeping in mind that it is not sweet.

We also tried raspberry Kefir.  Kefir is like yogurt that is liquid.  There are several flavors or plain to choose from.  This product adds the good bacteria we need to keep our digestive health happy.  Perhaps you are familiar with the term probiotics.  Lots of those in Kefir!  This may be added to any smoothie, or simply enjoyed as is.  Kefir is located near the yogurt section of most grocery stores.

In combination, these ideas could help us all enjoy a more balanced entry into a new and exciting year, if we choose to implement them into our daily life today.

“Dear friend, I pray that you may enjoy good health and that all may go well with you, even as your soul is getting along well.”  3 John 2  NIV

 

Where are your Gifts?

Only 13 days until Christmas.  Where are your Gifts?  I do not mean the gifts we look for in stores and in catalogues or on the internet.  Where are the Gifts only YOU were created to give?  In this season of Advent, it is the Gifts only you are able to give that can make a difference in making the world brighter!

Do you know someone who is rather sad these days?  Perhaps you know lots of folks who are simply feeling blue.  Some have lost loved ones and find this time of year particularly difficult.  Others are in the midst of financial struggles and/or loss of a job.  We all have friends who dread spending time with certain family members for various reasons.  Many people are ill and holidays add even more unnecessary stress.  Whatever the reason, is there a way you could share some of your Gifts and make a difference?  Could you reach out and give a part of yourself to share hope, light and a bit of love?

Think about it.  What if you phoned a friend you know could use some hope and spent an hour of your time with them over lunch or a cup of coffee?  Or, what if you gave your favorite cashier at the grocery a small token of appreciation, because she often makes your day a bit brighter?  What if you wrote a note to someone who hasn’t heard from you in a while?  Could you add some light to their busy week?

Often we apply the “all or none” principle.  Let perfection go.  When we all do a little something, we add more hope, light and love to a world that is too often filled with darkness, bitterness and never enough love.

Only 13 days until Christmas.  Quiet yourself from all the shopping, baking, decorating, etc.   Let your unique light shine and fill someone’s heart with hope and love.  May God Bless~

“I will lead the blind by ways they have not known, along unfamiliar paths I will guide them;  I will turn the darkness into light before them and make the rough places smooth.  These are the things I will do;  I will not forsake them.”   The promise of God,  Isaiah 42:16  NIV

Dancin’…Dancin’…Dancin’ the Night Away

What fun we had the other evening.  We danced!  Not just any dance, but THE BIG DANCE– of the year.  My son attends an all boys’ high school and each year is the Mother & Son Dance, fondly referred to as the “Mom Prom.”  

Now, before you think this whole idea is crazy and wonder what young man between the ages of 14-19 would even attend such an event, let me set the record straight.  Lots of sons dance with their moms and actually have fun.  It is a very refreshing sight to behold.  Young men dressed in suits, ties and the like, out on the town with their moms.  Granted, most freshman struggle with this, but peer pressure can be a good thing.  This dance is a real treat for us moms, and the upperclassmen set the tone.  There were several instances when I heard my son say to a fellow student, “Why aren’t you dancing with your mom?  She does everything for you!”  Wow!  Hopefully this phase of raising my son lasts his lifetime. 

We laughed and danced and laughed some more.  We took lots of pictures and tried to follow the latest “club” dance steps.  (The boys seemed to have it a bit more together here.)   Moms and their sons, having the time of their lives, before college and crazy work schedules…in spite of current day challenges.  It was a bit like a fairytale, and at midnight, the glass slippers were gone.  Hard as we try to hang on to times like these, time marches on and so do our children.  How blessed I am to have had one more dance.

“Discipline your son and he will give you peace;  he will bring delight to your soul.”                                    Proverbs 29:17 NIV