Adventures in Drool: Before summer's end...
“Eat food. Not too much. Mostly plants.”
― Michael Pollan, In Defense of Food: An Eater's Manifesto
The end is in sight. Nervous energy bubbles out of the kids because they know school is coming. Anxiety starts to bloom in parents' stomachs because it means school supplies, new clothes and a busier schedule. Before summer ends, set down some goals to make it a smooth transition.
No.1: Grab the kids and enjoy one last summer adventure.
Here are some ways to make it happen, even on a budget.
Plan an unplugged day. This means no TV, no Facebook, no phone, no email. Get rid of the master plan, the to-do list and ignore the mounds of laundry. Just play with your family. Go to the beach, a park, a pond, a lake - anywhere to play and lounge and enjoy the outdoors.
Take off on a spontaneous vacation or road trip. Surprise grandma with a visit or announce that Saturday night is camp-out night. Set up the backyard with a tent and a small campfire pit. Make smores and look at the stars.
No. 2: Add some green to your morning routine. Get in the habit of making a healthy breakfast that focuses on vegetables and fruit. Here are two recipes that I will be trying this week via The Nourished Home - thenourishedhome.com. Author of the blog, Laura, sends out regular newsletters. They are really enjoyable and give great ideas for living a healthy, balanced life with a family.
Super Green Juice
1 bag baby spinach
½ bunch kale
½ bunch of celery
1 lemon, quartered with seeds removed
1 apple or pear, quartered with seeds removed
Wash all produce and cut up to fit through the feeder on your juicer.
Push the produce through the juicer, alternating fruit and veggies so that the more fibrous items such as kale move through the feed tube more easily.
Stir your juice and serve immediately!
Note: You will need a high-powered juicer to make this recipe.
Or add some fruit to your green:
The Nourished Home’s Super Green Smoothie
Makes 4 servings
½ bunch of kale
½ cup blueberries (can be frozen blueberries, or try other berries)
1 apple or pear, quartered
1 tbs fresh ground flax meal (You can buy flax seeds in bulk at a local health food store and grind them in a coffee grinder a couple of times a week to ensure fresh flax meal.)
1 tbs hemp seeds (optional)
A drizzle of pure maple syrup or raw honey
Water & ice
Wash kale and pull leaves off of stems. Fill your blender halfway with the kale.
Put the banana, frozen berries, and chopped apple or pear into your blender.
Pour the flax meal, hemp seeds, and maple syrup on top of the fruit.
Fill the remaining space in blender with water and ice.
Mix smoothie at high speed until you reach your desired consistency. Some people enjoy a smoothie with little bits of green to chew on. Others like their smoothie really smooth. See what works best for you!
Poor smoothie into a glass and enjoy. Pour the remaining smoothie into a glass mason jar, cover, and place in fridge to enjoy throughout the day.
Note: It is best to drink the entire smoothie within 12-24 hours of making it.
No. 3: Take time to be quiet, slow down, reflect, be grateful and get centered.
As parents, we are stressed, rushed and generally unkempt (well at least the parents I know!). Commit to centering your spirit. This can come with meditation or with a simple, quiet walk through the woods or down the beach. Five minutes a day, will help the world become more clear. It will spark creativity and help you reach your goals.
It will also increase your energy and help you target what's important today, while giving you the strength to return to the yelling maelstrom that is often our homes.
No. 4: One of my favorite things is to have an impromptu party. Mine often revolves around a Mexican theme because as my family will tell you, I love tacos.
Before your family gets home, put up some streamers, make a fun buffet style dinner, put on some tunes and get into a party mood. Then when everyone comes in, it's time for a spontaneous fiesta. This is sure to cure anyone's middle-of-the-summer blues.
And remember, Labor Day is only four weeks away!
Have a great week droolers!