Sunday, July 31

{Berry & Coconut Smoothie Bowl}

I am almost 2 weeks into this adventure! It's difficult and I have to admit I don't feel great.  I'm quite exhausted, bloated and.....kinda crabby most of the time.  My kind Love has been so patient putting up with my feisty and pouty disposition.  I must admit I let out exasperated cries for pizza and cheese and coconut ice cream quite often.  I think the biggest lesson I am learning is discipline.  Instant gratification for my sweet tooth is not an option right now.  

I did make a tasty and simple little treat for myself yesterday morning.  I have a decent amount of victoriously delicious meal that even friends and my Love have enjoyed.  I though I might share this little one with you.

{Saturday Morning Breakfast Bowl}

½ Frozen Organic Banana
Frozen Organic Blueberries
Fresh Organic Strawberries
Fresh Thais Coconut Meat
Plain So Delicious Coconut Kefir
Splash of Organic Vanilla
Dash of Cinnamon
A few drops of Vanilla Stevia

Fresh Organic Blueberries
Dehydrated Organic and Raw Coconut flakes

Blend it all and serve immediately.  Enjoy!

Thursday, July 21

{Wild Salmon, Lemon Cucumber and Avocado Salad}

To heal the 20 plus years of gut destruction by means of gluten, soy, dairy and much more, I have begun a cleanse.  I will only be eating foods that are soothing and avoiding any foods that would insight inflammation in my overly sensitive gut.  Day one was yesterday and, may I just say, I really wasn’t the happiest camper.  I have been slowly eliminating all sorts of food groups from my diet for a few years now and this cleansing diet is officially the most limiting I have ever experienced.  Now don’t get me wrong, I am in full support of the philosophy behind it and am eager for the end result it might bring, but boy is it going to be a test of my perseverance and self control.  I am already trying to find ways to create little desserts with the foods I have available to me.  I truly am a dessert girl through and through….

To summarize the diet for you and well, to get a little pity from you all, let me tell you what I can and cannot eat for at least 30 days. 

{Soothing List}
1. Most Veggies (except tomatoes, potatoes and mushrooms)
2. Fermented Food (like sauerkraut and pickles)
3.Any Meat (I’m only going to be incorporating Salmon for now)
4.Low Glycemic Fruits (This ones tricky.  Some fruit I thought was LG is not!)
5. Anything and Everything Coconut and Olive based (One of the most soothing foods you can put in your body!)
6. Herbal Teas (a favorite already, fortunately)

{Inflammatory List}
1. SUGAR/Chocolate (including Low Glycemic like agave and brown rice syrup)
2. Grains (Any and all, even GF)
3. All Dairy
4. All Soy
5. All Alcohol
6. High Glycemic Fruit (melons, mango, pineapple, raisins)
7. Lectins (this one was the hardest for me to give up! Includes nuts and beans)

Well there you have it! Sooo if any of you have fun recipes to spice up my diet, please feel free to share! I had fun creating a nice light dinner this evening that you can even enjoy.  It incorporates all soothing foods and just happens to taste delicious.

{Wild Salmon, Lemon Cucumber and Avocado Salad}

A perfect pairing, the lemon brings out the saltiness of the salmon and the avocado brings a rich buttery flavor to compliment the tangy lemon. 

{Serves 1}
1 cup   Diced Organic English Cucumber
1 tbsp  Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Half a Ripe Organic Hass Avocado
Torn Pieces of Wild Alaskan Smoked Sockeye Salmon
Sliver of Fresh Lemon
Dash of Pink Himalayan Sea Salt

Mix your Cucumber and Olive Oil in a small bowl.  Slice your Avocado and mix in, adding your Salmon to follow.  Sprinkle the dish with fresh Lemon juice from your Lemon sliver and Salt it to your taste.   Mix well and enjoy!

Wednesday, July 13

{The Everyday-Trader Joe's GF Oats & Coconut Milk}

Today’s every day post is very exciting! I just LOVE making fun new discoveries in our local stores, especially ones that include inexpensive, quick and easy foods.  Trader Joe's is my hero this Saturday.  After enjoying a wonderful afternoon with Freddi Pakier preparing food for her Sunday cooking class, I stopped by TJ’s and found two wonderful treats.  I truly wish you all could have been there.  I was actually giggling in the aisle.  Definitely got a few confused looks, but I did not care in the least! Trader Joe's now carries GF Rolled Oats! Not a puny little bag, but a whole 2 pounds worth, all for $3.99.  WHAT!?

K, at this point I know some of you are saying….what is she so jazzed about and what are GF Oats?  Let me provide some context.  GF (gluten-free) Oats are Oats that  are not grown or harvested near Wheat, preventing the all too common cross-pollination issue.  If you are new to GF take note, Oats are not safe unless they are labeled GF.  Now to bring it home with TJ’s, when looking in other markets you will discover that the same amount (2lbs) of GF Oats will range between $8-$20 dollars.  Outrageous right? Hence, my excitement for the $3.99 Trader Joe's version.  Are you with me now?

Wow, I’m still excited; now onto my second find.  As many of you may have seen, our lovely TJ’s has begun to carry my favorite, Almond milk.  This has been one of my staples for a while and once again TJ’s version is a dollar or two cheaper than any other market.  While parousing this area I noticed a new addition, Coconut milk! Trader Joe's has finally caught up to the Coconut trend (a favorite trend of mine by the way)! I purchased a little vanilla flavored carton for $1.99 and walked away with a large smile on my face. 

My first action, once out the door, was to call my fiancĂ©.  Not surprisingly the conversation consisted of me  talking about food and how TJ’s has risen back to the top of my favorites markets (Yes, I have a list of favorites and yes, I do visit them all frequently…kinda just live for it).  Needless to say, he is a very gracious and patient man.  I’m truly blessed.  Now, though, I am sharing the fun news with you! These are truly some fun and budget-friendly finds.  Hope you find these tips helpful in your weekly shopping.  Till next time…  Enjoy!

Monday, July 11

{October Love}

It's official.  We have the keys. We turned on the electric and water.  We even have renter's insurance.  It's the truth.
We have a home.

A funny story truly, because we really just started looking a few weeks ago.  We weren't fully expecting to find a place, just open to the possibility.  Well, it turned out that the very first apartment we viewed and applied for was it! Pretty quickly and easily we found ourselves swept along the rental process and into the wonderful place we now call home.

It'll be a gradual process of moving in for me, followed by a full move in with my man after we marry in October.  I must admit I am already eager and ready to make it cozy.  My mom calls it nesting, so apparently I am ready to nestle down and make it just lovely for the two of us.

Our Casa de J, the name I have lovingly given it, is just right; big enough for the two of us, small enough to feel cozy and just the perfect amount of age and quirkiness and to make us feel like authentic newly weds.  It's truly us.

Just for you I have a little tour of our sweet quaint space, so you can see for yourself.  Enjoy!

{Our Home}

 {Our Living Room and Kitchen}

{A Little Sangria to Celebrate}


{Our Bedroom and Closet}

 {The View From Our Deck}

{Our Front Steps}

 {Soaking It All In}

Saturday, July 9

{October Love}

Today I want to share a new little piece of my life with you all.  As many of you know I am engaged to the most wonderful man Jesus ever created.  We are getting married the first of October this Fall and I couldn’t be more excited. It’s been quite a journey so far preparing for this special day; a journey that I realize all of you have taken or will eventually take.  I’ve found so far that my own experiences can be encouraging, helpful and inspiring to others who may be traveling down the same road or are about to begin a similar adventure.  It is from this realization that I came to a conclusion;  I would like to begin sharing my progression through the three months I have left of my engagement.  I plan to record my inspirations, visions, experiences, frustrations, thoughts, advice, victories and any little joys that arise from the general process.  I hope you find these posts enjoyable, if not at least entertaining.  I will continue my food posts as usual.  They will simply be sprinkled with life and love posts. 

I will begin right now by giving you the basics.  We are getting married in the beautiful coastal city of Carlsbad, California.  It will be a small and intimate garden wedding.  Colors include a rich forest green, a stormy blue, and an accent of eggplant purple with base colors of steel grey and warm ivory.  I have envisioned a very natural and airy setting.  The ceremony will finish right at sunset, allowing the reception to be lit with strings of soft glowing light. 

The pieces are truly beginning to come together and my vision, which was quite broad at first, is beginning to narrow, revealing the fun details.  I am sure this progression will continue as the months sweep by. 

So here finishes my first little story about the wonderful October event.  I hope you will continue to stop by and share in my adventures of wedding, food and life.  Keep a look out for more {October Love} posts to come.  


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