Popping in to say hello

Friday, February 27, 2009

A wonderful and inspiring video came across my path today, and it made me think of you all. :)
The main point of the message was that I need to remember that I should not only communicate with you guys when I have something big and important to say. Instead, I should remember that this is a relationship between you and me, and it's ok to just say hi and let you in on my regular life.

Truth be told, I have no problem with peeling back the internet layer and letting you in on my regular life. The tricky part is having time to do so! I have had a list of things to share with you here on the blog and in newsletters, and just haven't spent my time that way. (I am trying to get out of the habit of saying "I didn't have time" because I realize I always have time, just make choices about how to spend it!) Between the responsibilities of educating children at home, running the house and businesses, the needs of my family, and dealing with all of the curve balls that life throws my way, sometimes the blogging, newsletters, and communication just don't happen quite as I'd like them to.

Tonite, though, I'm checking in!

We keep having peek-a-boo weather here in central Kentucky. Yesterday we had a beautiful 64 degree day. Today it was in the 40s. I heard that tomorrow we are supposed to get snow. Oy! Thankfully, Kentucky winters are far less brutal than the ones I endured as a child growing up in central New York, but I am still plenty glad to see winter go away when the time comes.

This year my children and I plan to have a BIG garden project. Pumpkins, gourds, corn, and melons are planned for a big space at the top of our hill. Flower gardens are planned for several different areas around our yard. I have an especially exciting plan for sunflowers! :) Most veggies will probably be grown in some self-watering containers that I have my eye on. Oh--and a potato patch is definitely going to happen this year, using the above-the-ground planting method that sounds enticingly easy! (You can laugh at me in August when I am commenting about it not being so easy after all!) I also want to get some sweet onions and some garlic going. And as the seed catalogs keep coming to our mailbox every day, I'm sure our already long list will grow. :)

On the business front, I am extremely excited about a new product line that I am adding! For those of you that have been searching for TRULY safe, organic products for your skin care, you are going to LOVE THIS! I have been extremely impressed with these products for quite some time, and have found no equal to the quality and safety of them anywhere else. I will be telling you more about all of it soon, and I am really looking forward to that!

Later this weekend I'll be sending out a newsletter that will include some nice sale items, so if you haven't already signed up to receive it, be sure to do that right now. The sign up box is to the upper left on this page. :)

A few of my children have been feeling sick this week. The flu is running rampant in our small town. Thankfully, with our arsenal of Berry Well, Ultra Immune, and Winter Breeze, nobody has had any sort of serious illness, and each of them seems to have popped right back into health within a day or so of starting to feel not-so-good. I'm thankful for excellent products that are easy for even the little ones to take!

I am working on a fun surprise for you all that I can hopefully share with you next week. It'll be completely free, and quite inspirational, I think. :)

I'll be in touch with you again soon!

From a class member

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Hi Erica,

I just wanted to say thank you again for the conference call last night. I really enjoyed hearing others questions and ideas. Wanted to let you know I made the fudge recipe for our Valentine's Day treat. I sneaked a little bite and it is wonderful!!!!! That would definitely take care of any chocolate cravings. Oh yeah and tomorrow I plan on making some heart shaped pancakes using the recipe in the lesson :-)

Blessings from my home in WV to yours,

From a class member--YUMMY!

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

I just want to tell you that I LOVE your healthy lemonade. As we would say in the South, "That is the best THING I have ever put in my MOUTH."
Also, your applesauce bread is evidently wonderful. I made a loaf of it Monday, and it was gone Tuesday. I say evidently, because I think all I got was a teeny tiny going to be sliver. And I live with a husband and three teens that are NOT health food fanciers!

When I checked in with Joetta to see if it was ok with her for me to use her comments here, she said

If you can give me a recipe using whole wheat flour and honey, and my kids scarf it down in less than 24 hours, then the whole world needs to know! There is hope! (LOL)

From a class member

Sunday, February 08, 2009

I just wanted to say a special thank you--
the healthier eating class moves slowly enough that I don't get totally frustrated
and it means so much to me that you really are there to help with questions and suggestions. Thank you so very much.


If you haven't joined my 10-week healthy eating class yet, you should! I get emails every day like this one from people that are finding the information encouraging and practical.

You can read more about it and join at a BIG discount here.

Stevia Tabs are In Stock!

Saturday, February 07, 2009

Some of you have been waiting for Stevia Tabs to get back in stock. They are here now. Yay!

This product has been reformulated a bit to make it even better, so I'm sure you're going to love it.

Stevia Tabs are great for carrying in your jacket, purse, or bag to sweeten your drinks while out and about. They come in a handy tin and are little round tabs similar in size to an Altoid.

I've hired a personal trainer

Friday, February 06, 2009

She's my 12 year old daughter. I pay her a dollar a day to make me do some exercise. :)

Like a lot of you, I don't particularly like to exercise. For that reason I've always got my antenna up for exercise that I can actually enjoy. (because I know I won't do the stuff that I don't like!) Over the years I have found a few at-home exercise programs that I do enjoy, and the next hurdle was making myself actually use the stuff. I started paying my daughter to motivate me to do my exercise each day awhile back, but we'd kind of fallen off the wagon recently. Now we're back on, and she does a great job of getting me going.

Some of my favorite at-home exercise resources:

Leslie Sansone's walk-at-home DVDs. It's basically marching in place, with some side steps, kicks, and arm work thrown in. Much more challenging than a walk around the block, and doesn't take any special equipment or much space at all. Leslie is a friendly face and a good encourager. A 1 mile walk only takes 15 minutes, and 2 miles takes a half hour. She has longer walks available too, though I don't normally take the time to get into those. I get Leslie's DVDs from Netflix because I can switch it out with a new one when I get tired of the same video after awhile.

Joyce Vedral's weight lifting DVDs are really good. Fast Forward is my favorite. This lady is really an inspiration--in her 60s and able to wear a bikini and look great! Light weight lifting is important for bone health and to keep osteoporosis away.

Rebounding is very fun, feels good, and is easy. It is great for your immune system, brain, and cellulite! (woot!) I've got this rebounding DVD and it is pretty fun, and surprisingly challenging. Needak and Reboundair are considered to be the best rebounders for your health. My friend Evie sells the ReboundAIR at her site here.

Healthified Macaroni Grill Rosemary Bread

Wednesday, February 04, 2009

The Macaroni Grill is my favorite restaurant, though sadly it went out of business in Lexington awhile back. (sob! NOW where am I supposed to go on my birthday?!) Their Rosemary Bread is absolutely faboo, and a few months ago I went in search of a recipe so that I could duplicate it. Thanks to the internet, source for all info, I found it, and last week I healthified the recipe for our dinner with friends...and it came out goooood. :)

1 tablespoon rapid rise yeast
1 tablespoon raw honey
1 cup warm water
2.5 cups whole wheat flour (freshly milled if possible)
1 teaspoon sea salt
2 tablespoons fresh organic rosemary
2 tablespoons butter

1. Place yeast, honey, and warm water in a large bowl or food processor and allow to become bubbly.

2. Mix in 1 tablespoon of butter, 2 cups of flour, and the salt.

3. Add 1 tablespoon of chopped fresh rosemary.

4. Knead for about 10 minutes by hand or 5 minutes in your food processor or with kneading mixer.

5. Only add as much dough as needed to make it not stick to the sides of your mixer. (or not be too stick in your hands, if kneading by hand) The key here is to add just enough flour to get the right consistency, and not a bit more past that.

6. Oil a bowl, put dough in it, cover with towel, and let rise in a warm place for one hour or until doubled.

7. Punch down the dough and divide it in half. Form round loaves and place on a cookie sheet that has been sprayed with no-stick spray. Sprinkle the remaining 1 tablespoon of chopped rosemary over the leaves and kind of press it lightly into the surface. Cover and let rise for another 45 minutes.

8. Uncover the loaves and bake in a 375 degree oven for about 15-20 minutes, until lightly browned.

9. When you remove the loaves from the oven, have melted butter ready. Brush the butter over the surface of the loaves, and sprinkle sea salt on it.

10. This is nicely served with saucers of extra virgin olive oil and some fresh pepper to dip it in. Just tear the loaf apart and eat with your hands. :)

I made eight loaves of this bread because of the amount of people we were having over. I arranged each loaf on a small plate, and positioned each one in between two seats at the table, so that those two people could share it. There was a saucer of the EVOO and pepper handy too. This picture gives you a look at how I had it set up:

Before I healthified it, this was a regular recipe that included sugar and white flour. Once you get the hang of healthy eating principles, you will easily see how to make substitutions that can make your food healthier (and yummier!) without any hassle at all. This wasn't one bit harder to make when made the healthy way, and it tasted great.

Super Salad Bar

Tuesday, February 03, 2009

So way back before the ice storm happened, we had some friends over for dinner. They are the healthy-eating sort, so I did my best to put together a nutritious and yummy meal that would appeal to the adults as well as the 11 kids in attendance. :)

One fun thing I did was this Super Salad Bar. It looked so pretty, but was very easy to do.

In the big bowl I combined organic salad greens and spinach.
In the Tupperware thingy I had cherry tomatoes, Rainbow Salad (basically julienned broccoli, carrots, and so forth), cashews, yummy Salad Sidekick (the carrot stuff you see there), cubed cucumbers, happy yellow sweet peppers, and some dried cranberries.

You could put something like this together with whatever stuff you've got around the house. Other ideas for a salad bar include:

diced chicken or other cooked meat
sliced or diced hard boiled eggs
pickles (sliced up works well in salads)
any other raw veggies
sunflower seeds

Use your imagination! The more goodies you load into your salad, the more of a meal it becomes. :)

I also had my awesome homemade salsa for the dressing. (I had some store-bought kinds, too, for those that would want that)

The recipes for the salsa and the Salad Sidekick are available in my Super Salads ebook. I'm having a special on my ebooks right now. You can check it out here.

It was a great starter to our meal! (Tomorrow I'll tell you about the fabulous bread I made!)

From a class member

Monday, February 02, 2009

One of the first things I have my class members do is to figure out what their goals are in relation to healthier eating.

Today I got this great email from one of my new class members, and I loved it so much that I asked her if I could share it with you all. She was kind enough to agree, so here it is:

I wrote out a list of positive and negatives for eating healthily:

End of arthritis like join pains, asthma, frequent bronchitis, bursitis, heartburn, tendinitis and other dis-ease.
More energy.
Better sleep.
Better overall health.
Increased attractiveness which makes me more marketable professionally and romantically. Longer life.
Money saved by eliminating 3-pepsi a day habit=annual trip to Europe and adopting a starving child from the back of a magazine or whatever my dream my be. 600 less empty Pepsi bottles in the landfill. We can all become healthy, green, and financially wise, loving, and powerful together!

I just love her sense of humor (more marketable romantically!! LOL) and the way she realized how much of her health AND money is being given up by her Pepsi habit. This made me wonder what I might have lurking around that could be turned into doing good for others as well.

You can learn more about the class here