Saturday, September 25, 2010

A "Thing" for Festivals

 My mom and I have this "thing" for festivals. Ever since I can remember she was always taking my sister and me to art fairs, cultural festivals, and the good ole State Fair. My favorite purple tie-dyed t-shirt came from
an art fair in State College, Pennsylvania when I was seven.
This weekend my sons had two travel soccer games in nearby towns and my sister and her husband were on a birthday weekend getaway. My mom was watching her three kids. We discovered there was a festival in one of the soccer game towns so we coordinated meeting with all the kids and taking them. This is no small feat. She met me at one game and had six of the kids, I drove to pick up my other son at another field. Of course he scores before I get there, which always seems to happen. I bring him back to the original field and we caravan to the town's festival.

The weather was perfect and we parked and hopped on a hayride to tour the pretty park, making sure we had a "buddy system" in place.  After hopping off the wagon we entered and searched for the food ( mom and my favorite part!). I spent $29 on corn dogs and drinks for all seven kids and found a shaded picnic table to dine. My turn came to choose and I went for the "Bob & Carol's Philly Cheese Steak" Stand - a true mom and pop stand with juicy steak drenched in cheese, onions, and peppers. I doused mine with hot sauce too. My mom opted for a walking taco and lemon shake up.

After finishing lunch, my mom popped for dessert- a bag of cinnamon sugar mini donuts hot off the press (or fryer). The kind man even threw in a few extra for our motley bunch (the kids were getting dirty by now). The hot donuts disappeared in an instant and we were off to the bounce houses and booths. With seven kids, not much shopping was accomplished, just lots of smiles and squeals. Finally, the kids started to have blank stares and we were all running out of steam. We hopped back on the hayride to the parking lot and called it a day.
I really do think we are passing on the love of festivals and fairs to the kids as they always say, "Can we do this again?" I smile and hope we will, too.
 K

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Super Harvest Moon

The Super Harvest Moon Is Upon Us

Tonight is the night of the autumnal equinox 2010. It will mark the beginning of spring in the Southern Hemisphere and the the beginning of fall in the Northern Hemisphere.

In addition to this, Jupiter and the moon will appear next to each other in the night sky. This amazing phenomenon is known as the “super harvest moon“. 
Super Harvest Moon Dance
 Good Thoughts from Circle of Light.com below:
This celebration is observed with a harvest feast to celebrate and share the abundance of the past season.

Traditionally, this celebration was observed with a harvest feast to celebrate and share the abundance of the past season. And a time when the plants are setting their seeds; making themselves ready for their new cycle. This ritual is all about harvesting ALL the Universe has waiting for you. And for assisting you to use this time to balance yourself and your life; setting yourself and your life to be ready for your new cycle of being. Remember everything that is placed on one side of the scale has to have something else placed on the other side. Thus, this ritual assists in creating and maintaining that balance; using this time to look closely at the balance in your life and shifting what needs to be shifted or changing what needs to be changed.
 
How do you balance your personal needs with your commitments to the outside world? How do you receive? How do you give? How do you hold on to that which is no longer beneficial in your life? You might want to reflect on this in a journal or make it concrete by putting objects on a scale. For everything which represents one side of the scale to you (for instance, a book representing quiet time alone), place something on the other side which represents its opposite (a letter or phone for reaching out to friends). If your scale is out of balance then this ritual can assist you to bring yourself and your life back into balance; thus harvesting more peace of mind, joy, prosperity, happiness; and less loneliness, chaos, confusion and frustration. A time to plant the seeds making yourself ready for your new cycle.

Happy Harvest Moon,
Kathy

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Sandwich Art - Toasted Chicken & Tomato with Creamy Basil Spread

I think a good sandwich is a work of art.
Before becoming a stay at home mom I owned a gourmet sandwich
cafe with my sister and dad. We created all of our recipes from scratch using only fresh and natural ingredients. I am still creating new recipes in my own kitchen at the ranch.
Here is what I just made for lunch using leftover grilled chicken and fresh tomatoes and basil.
Toasted Chicken & Tomato Sandwich with Creamy Basil Spread

Toast good bread
Spread both pieces with creamy basil spread (recipe below)
Add pulled chicken (can be turkey and or bacon)
Sprinkle with salt and pepper
Add slices of tomato
Top with basil leaves
Cut and enjoy!
Serve the sandwich with tortilla chips and the extra basil spread as dip.
Creamy Basil Spread
8 oz. cream cheese
1/2 c. sour cream (or mayo)
Bunch of fresh basil leaves up to 1 c. (1T. dried basil can work)
1 t. dried Italian herbs
1 t. salt
ground pepper. Blend until creamy (I used my Magic BulletMixer)

Monday, September 13, 2010

Juice Journey Update

Hi Friends,
Thanks for all the questions and interest on the juicing. You should know, I am not a dieter. I've never been on a diet. I love to eat. I love to cook. That's the problem.

Until recently and even after having four kids,  I have been lucky to naturally stay around a certain weight with regular exercise and eating mostly what I want. The day I turned 40 it all seemed to change. It hit me over the head like a frying pan last week when the air got cooler and I reached for my favorite Lucky jeans. They would not zip from extra bulge in the gut.

That's when I called my friend Shannon in Iowa and asked her about her juice diet. She told me it works. I trusted her and started the minute we hung up. 

Fast forward five days of just juicing. It works. I have dropped six pounds and the jeans have zipped. I feel cleansed and refreshed and back to a starting point. Kathy 2.0.

I just made my first meal  - a veggie quesadilla (recipe will be posted soon). It tasted delicious and I enjoyed every bite slowly. I plan to get back on the juice for a three more days to drop a few more because crock pot season is about to begin.

Here is what I did for five days:
I did not give up my morning cup of coffee. I need my coffee.
Fresh juice prepared as much as I want followed by drinking lots of water.
In my blender (Magic Bullet) I filled it with ice, chopped fruit and a little water or Boathouse Farms carrot juice.
Fruit I used  - all whole and organic and skins on:
Bananas, green apples, blueberries, blackberries, raspberries, pineapple, strawberries, peaches, purple grapes, and avocado.
If I was out and on the go I bought fresh juice in the produce department of the grocery like Odwalla, Naked, and Boathouse Farms fresh juice blends.
Drank lots of water. Remember, cleanse!

The end of day two was the most difficult time for me. I was tired and sweating out toxins and my body wanted food. I pushed through that time with another smoothie and felt so much better. By day three and four I felt fantastic! Another benefit was that my kids loved drinking my juice blends too!

I had really planned on doing a seven day cleanse but on day five after four soccer games, teaching two yoga classes, and a Cub Scout BBQ, I came home and made the precious veggie quesadilla.

That's the story. It worked. I encourage you to try it to drop a few pounds, cleanse your body, and feel great! Crock pot season here I come! I will re-post my Indian Summer Beef Stew with Crusty Buttered Bread soon.
Happy Juicing,
K

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Juice Time!

After a summer of indulgent eating with my kids, I just realized I can't zip up my jeans. I called my friend Shannon in Iowa to get her wellness advice. She's into the healthy/ fitness/vegetarian lifestyle. She told me she was in the same too tight jeans boat a few months ago and started juicing and got quick and healthy results. She suggested going on a juice fast for a week to cleanse my body and drop a few pounds. I'm going to try it.
This morning I dusted off my Magic Bullet Mixer and tossed in a banana, sliced green apple, strawberries, and Boathouse Farms carrot juice. I poured it in a pretty glass on ice and am sipping it now as I write. It is utterly delicious and filling. Below is a paragraph I found on a juicing website about its health benefits.
Fresh juice provides us with minerals, vitamins, essential fatty acids, carbohydrates, proteins and much more. All of these factors are vital to maintaining good health. You will find that when you make fresh juice a daily part of your diet, you will have increased energy, a glowing complexion, strengthened immune system, stronger bones and a reduced risk of disease. It is recommended that you drink at least 16 ounces of freshly squeezed juice each day.
Let the juicing begin.
I'll update soon.