Had a weekend of introspection about the many blessings I have had the opportunity to know and remembered how important it is to be grateful.  I am grateful too for this health and wellness journey I have been on, the people who influence it, and while I don’t get it right all the time, I feel good about the progress I have made and the additional steps I am taking to make the remaining years – those God gifts me with – the best years of all.

Funny, don’t you just hate it when Mom was right…. she always spoke about not rushing my life as a kid, and now that I am at this “mature” age, I agree.  I value so much less so much more now…less stuff, less worry, less drama…. more experiences, more real, more abandon and more just doing the flawed, imperfect, sometimes together and sometimes completely a mess me.

I am grateful I get to share some of this here even if no one reads it, but if someone does, and finds even a little inspiration or encouragement or new idea, that is fantastic.

This week’s menu truly meets the Simply Yum rules. The main dish and snack are from the fabulous recipes of @kalejunkie.  You can find the full recipes at www.kalejunkie.com

What I like about KaleJunke – aka Nicole Modic is the approachability of her recipes.  Even when there are ingredients I am unfamiliar with, they don’t scare me.  I also like learning the impact of and why she uses some of those ingredients.  There are many quality resources out there…while I share those I like; I encourage you to explore and try something different.  It is actually fun for me when I try something new and it turns out …. even when it doesn’t, I learn.

This week’s menu:

  • Breakfast:                    Frig-cleaning Smoothie
  • Lunch:                         Fresh Fruit Salad
  • Dinner:                        Kung Pao Cauliflower – Kalejunkie
  • Snack:                         Gut-Healthy Mini Banana Chocolate Chip Buckwheat Muffins – Kalejunkie
  • Water:                         Of Course

Frig-cleaning Smoothie:  I wanted to get through the fruit and veggie remnants in my frig this week.  I tend to buy too much of certain items and then they ultimately go bad.  So, every now and then I go through and simply use what is there.  This smoothie is a combo of broccoli, zucchini, and carrots added to unsweetened almond milk.  Added to that, fresh turmeric and ginger, chia seeds, and psyllium.  Then, added a frozen banana, terminal strawberries and blueberries, then a few chunks of pineapple along with two large dates. Finally added just a bit of frozen berries left in the freezer and viola – yummy, healthy breakfast.

Fruit Salad:  My first of the season.  I love all the fresh availability of fruits as we move through spring and summer.  Mostly dark berries in this one and so good.  I simply tossed together, blueberries, red and black raspberries, watermelon and pineapple.  Gives me the sweet I often look for while being good for me at the same time.

Kung Pao Cauliflower:  I love Chinese takeout but try not to get it too often because it is not the best for me.  When I saw this recipe, I had to give it a try and I am so glad I did.  Fresh ingredients – cauliflower, peppers, onions, raw cashews, and zucchini roasted with a touch of avocado oil (something I have not used before) then tossed with a fabulous sauce, so good.  The sauce made with rice wine vinegar, sesame oil, garlic, ginger combined with jalapeno turned out great, even with a couple of substitutes I used only because my store did not have Hoisin sauce – I used black bean paste w/garlic.

After all these ingredients were combined, I made some simple rice and then topped it all with green onion and sesame seeds as suggested and it was as good – maybe better – than take out.  Being able to choose healthy ingredients and make it with my own hands is very satisfying. The full recipe is available here: https://kalejunkie.com/kung-pao-cauliflower/

Gut-Healthy Mini Banana Chocolate Chip Buckwheat Muffins: I am always looking for a quick snack that satisfies the sweet I want with the healthy I need.  This one does it…these muffins are what I would say are delicately sweet-not overwhelming and are hearty and satisfying at the same time.  They are small but full of flavor and were super simply to make.  The muffins include oats, cinnamon, flaxseed, bananas, apple cider vinegar and almond milk and then those dark chocolate chips.  While mine don’t look as pretty as the recipe picture…they taste great.  The full recipe is available here: https://kalejunkie.com/gut-healthy-mini-banana-chocolate-chip-buckwheat-muffins/

Water:   You are likely sick of having me say how important hydration is, but it is.  Harvard’s T.H. Chan School of Public Health says “Drinking enough water each day is crucial for many reasons: to regulate body temperature, keep joints lubricated, prevent infections, deliver nutrients to cells, and keep organs functioning properly. Being well-hydrated also improves sleep quality, cognition, and mood.”

Often people say to me that water is boring or doesn’t “taste” good or is hard to drink too much of.  Well, make it interesting, be creative and change it up.  Add fruit, herbs or drink it in other forms.  There are also fruits like watermelon that have high water concentrations.  Lots of opportunities to say hydrated.

#StrongisBeautiful #SweatisSexy #HealthisHappy


Lentils with Roasted Veggies Ingredients
Lentils with Roasted Veggies Ingredients
Lentils and Onions
Lentils and Onions
Lentils and Veggies
Lentils and Veggies