Friday, July 29, 2011
Wednesday, July 27, 2011
Find my first three healthy living goals here.
4. Reduce/Eliminate Refined Sugar
This is one of the hardest challenges for me, as I have a major sweet tooth. I want to avoid refined sugars, and replace them with raw honey or fruit, as a natural sweetener.
2. Maintain/Increase Green Smoothie Consumption
I have been drinking green smoothies, almost daily, for a few years. I usually drink a quart of smoothie a day, and would like to increase that to two smoothies, daily. I am convinced that there is no better way to drink to your health than to drink green smoothies. Using a high powered blender, like the Vita Mix, breaks open the tough cell walls of plants. These cell walls aren't usually opened by merely chewing alone. Blending opens these cell walls, unleashing all of the nutrients within the cell. A few benefits of leafy greens include:
*helps prevent cancer *provides iron to organs *makes the body more alkaline *purifies the liver *helps unclog arteries naturally *relieves sore throat *cleans and deoderizes bowel tissues *improves vision *improves varicose veins *helps sores heal faster *and much more.
It has been estimated that 70% of cancers are attributed to nutritional deficiencies/overload of toxins. Green leafies supply the revitalizing nutrients and expel the toxins that are stored in our bodies. One American dies from cancer every minute. If even some cancer cases can be prevented through nutrition, it would be well worth it. Here are some of my tips regarding how to make green smoothies more palatable for beginners/children.
Pasteurized, homogenized milk has been linked to some adverse health affects. According to the book, Cancer Step Outside the Box, pasteurized milk is incapable of building bones, since the enzyme phosphatase, which is required in order to absorb calcium is destroyed in the heating process. Raw milk is illegal to purchase in my state. (It is so important that if you are in a state where it is legal to buy raw milk, that you make sure that you get it from a very clean, reliable source.) I use almond milk as a substitute for cow's milk. I would love to make my own, but have had trouble finding an affordable source of almonds. (Note: I do buy a half gallon of cow's milk, on occasion, for cooking purposes.) I have also read that goat/Jersey cow milk confers more health benefits than Holstein cow milk. I would love to own a milking goat, one day. I highly recommend doing your own research about milk. This is a great place to start. A natural, alternative source of calcium is broccoli or green leafies.
I would love to hear what your health goals are! Blessings!
This post is linked to Women Living Well and Day2Day Joys.
Posted by Christine at 5:11 PM
Wednesday, July 20, 2011
A friend of mine recently posted a few of her health goals for this year, and it inspired me to put together a list of goals that I have/will be working on!
1. Pure Water
The Imperial Berkey, my beloved water filtration system.
Drinking healthy water is so fundamental in living a vibrantly healthy life. It can be downright depressing reading about all of the potential adverse effects of drinking municipal water. Chlorine and heavy fluoridation were two of many ills that I wanted removed from my water supply. (I checked what the fluoridation levels were for my local water supply, and they greatly exceeded the recommended amount. If we aren't supposed to swallow toothpaste with fluoride, why should we drink large doses of it?) So, one of my first goals towards healthy living was to purchase a Berkey filtration system. We ordered the Imperial Berkey, which is the second largest filtration system offered by Berkey, which filters 4.5 gallons. More than Alive offers a free gift with orders over a Berkey filtration system, and I selected the PF-2 Arsenic and Fluoride reduction elements. We have used this system for several months and are so please with our purchase. We couldn't think of a better investment in our health, than pure water! We also use a KDF shower filter, to prevent absorbing or inhaling chlorine, while taking a hot shower.
When you have little ones to tend to, it is easy to brush exercise off as a low priority. (I avoid exercise more often than I should!) But it is one area that is so vital for our health! Exercise has been found to reduce one's cancer risk, lesson depression, and even aid as an immune system boost. Aerobic exercise is especially helpful, as it delivers oxygen to every cell of our bodies. So many days when the last thing I feel like doing is exercising, I remind myself that I am doing it for my husband and my children, so I will be healthier. The cardio workouts that I have been doing are The Shred and Crunch: Fat Burning Pilates. (If you have Netflix, Crunch: Fat Burning Pilates is on instant watch.) I also try to take my children out for some exercise, daily, especially in the evening, because it is so hot here!
3. Prepare and Eat Alkaline Meals
According to the book, Cancer Step Outside the Box, we ought to eat 20% acidic and 80% alkaline to maintain health. Unfortunately, most readily available foods are acidic, and these can be quite toxic to our bodies. Preparing healthier meals definitely requires more planning, but is well worth it in the long run. I love gleaning from healthy recipe blogs such as The Nourishing Gourmet.
The following is a list of alkaline foods: (listed in Cancer Step Outside the Box)
most raw veggies and fruits, figs, lima beans, olive oil, honey, molasses, apple cider vinegar, miso, tempeh, raw milk, raw cheese, stevia, green tea, most herbs, sprouted grains, sprouts, wheatgrass, barley grass
Sodas, coffee, alcohol, chocolate, tobacco, aspartame, meats, oysters, fish, eggs, chicken, pasteurized milk, processed grains, sugar, peanut butter, beans, pasta
One of our favorite dishes is this healthy Mexican Quinoa Salad.
It contains spinach, olive oil, apple cider vinegar, corn, quinoa, garlic, and cilantro. Many of these ingredients are extremely alkaline and contribute to overall health! Cilantro is an amazing herb, which can help pull heavy metals out of your body.
I would love to hear what your health goals are! I have quite a few more health goals to share with you, as this is an area that I am very passionate about! Blessings!
Disclaimer: I am an affiliate for More than Alive and my affiliate links are used in this post.
Posted by Christine at 2:28 PM
Tuesday, July 19, 2011
The Boxtops for Education program is a fantastic way to contribute money to a local school. Most Walmart stores have up to 70 items containing 4 box tops each!
Walmart is one of my favorite places for buying school supplies for my children. Though I homeschool year round, I love to stock up on school supplies at the back to school sales. One money saving tip is that Walmart price matches competitors printed ads, so save all the ads, and get all of your school supplies at one place, for a great price. Talk about a life-saver right there, I am not fond of taking my littles into several stores at once, if I can avoid it! I am so excited to be able to giveaway a $25 Walmart gift card to one of my blog readers!
To Enter the Giveaway:
1. Leave a comment telling me what back to school supplies you usually purchase from Walmart. (Please leave an e-mail address.)
Optional Additional Entries:
1. Share about this giveaway on facebook, twitter, or your blog.
2. Follow Lily of the Valley and Walmart on Facebook.
3. Follow Lily of the Valley on Google Friend Connect.
Contest is open to US residents, ending on July 29th, 2011 at 12 pm. EST. One winner will be chosen at random via Random.org.
Disclosure: The information and $25 gift card to Walmart has been provided by Walmart and General Mills through MyBlogSpark.
Posted by Christine at 4:17 PM
Monday, July 11, 2011
Yesterday, my Annie Rose turned 4. There is a lot of life in those four years. She cracks me up more times than I can count, in a day, and she brings us so much joy!
- Very Feminine-She loves pink, ruffles, and lace.
- Happy- She wakes up giggling every morning (well...most days!)
- Fiercely Loyal - She will defend a sibling or other loved one if someone criticizes him/her.
- Fun Loving
It is amazing how these little blessings, whom we hope and dream to mold, through God's constant Grace, more and more into His image, change us. Annie was my first natural birth...I learned a lot through that experience. Labor fizzled out a bit while I hit a natural alignment plateau, and I had to draw from the amazing Bradley classes that I took, my midwife and doula's aid, and most of all, God's constant help, to continue on. God was faithful, and I was forever changed when I held my baby, still in shock that I really and truly gave birth without medication. I was no longer a skeptic that natural birth was possible...I became a natural birth advocate that same day. (Please note- I know that natural birth is not always possible in every situation, but I know from experience that it can be a great blessing and a life-changing experience.) She has been my spunky gal who brings joy to my every day. I am so grateful that God saw fit to send me my precious Annie.
Posted by Christine at 2:04 PM
Friday, July 08, 2011
Congratulations, Michelle! You won via random.org. Thank you to the Home Educating Family Publishing Company, for the review and giveaway copies! Blessings!
Posted by Christine at 11:21 AM
Friday, July 01, 2011
There is nothing that I love more than a good organizational tool. Homeschooling mothers are often challenged to find a planner that works with homeschooling, rather than traditional schooling. The Well Planned Day Planner fills this need, very well. In the past, I have used a hybrid approach to planning, utilizing a store-bought planner and printable sheets from the internet. This works alright, but have often thought that it would be so much more convenient to have all of my planning sheets in one location, and to not have to make copious amounts of copies. Last year, I took my printable planning sheets to Staples, to get my book spiral-bound. After my planner was bound, I realized that I wanted to put a lot more sheets in it, such as book lists, etc.. I was so disappointed that most of my planning materials weren't in one simple resource.
The Well Planned Day is an amazing resource for not only planning out homeschooling schedules, but also for planning grocery lists, dinner menus, recording book lists, grade keeping, chores, and so much more. I love the plentiful amounts of bible verses, inspirational quotes, and a weekly catechism memorization goal. It is like a dream come true that I can get everything I need in a single, pre-bound book! The Well Planned Day Planner is an invaluable resource, which would be great to save each school year. This planner contains schedule forms, curriculum needed/purchased, report cards, chore lists, etc. for up to four children. The holiday planning pages are an amazing bonus!
Posted by Christine at 1:05 PM