Smoothie love (infographic)

Hey Family!

Awhile back, I spoke about the love I have for smoothies, specifically green smoothies. I have one or two almost daily packed with spinach or kale, a banana, almond milk, and super foods like cacao, coconut oil, chia, flax and hemp seeds.

I usually supplement my healthy-ish meals (hey, sometimes you need a little cake!) with my smoothie and other times, I take it with me as I run errands or in between church services. It fills for a bit and keep me out of fast food land. This infographic, courtesy of superskinnyme.com, gives you a great idea on different types of smoothies and their effect on your body. Take a look and let me know if you have questions!

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Healthy Eating Spotlight–Blueberries

Hey family!

One of my dear sisters asked me about blogging about healthy food choices and I am only too happy to oblige. While we are not here to stay, I am of the mind while we are here, we should try, with God’s help, to do what we can to take good care of ourselves so we can head off preventable illnesses as much as possible. Of course, things happen that are out of our control, but we can control eating fried foods and large quantities of sweets every day.

Last year, I started making small dietary changes by incorporating more fruits, veggies and whole-wheat, and decreasing white, sugar, refined flour and caffiene. Eventually I started to eliminate wheat and “traditional” dairy, replacing them with gluten-free grains and almond or hemp milk. It seems I have more energy and lost a couple of inches. I do indulge every now and again with cake, chips or bread as a treat.

Well, Blen, what’s left to eat? Lots of things, we just need to break out of what we traditionally eat. The next few posts will focus on some simple info to incorporate in your diet. Let’s start small with this graphic on blueberries from MindBodyGreen.com

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These powerful little berries can be put into your pancakes, spooned into your yogurt, put into a fruit parfait with granola, or into a smoothie (my favorite). Check your grocer’s freezer or the produce section of your market and stock up! While organic is best, it can be pricey. You can get around that by soaking them in equal parts vinegar and water for a few minutes and then rinsing.

Bottom line: Let today be the last day to not take better care of yourself through healthier eating habits. Nothing changes if nothing changes.

Love,

Blen

Infographic from MindBodyGreen.com

Goin’ green

Hey family!

While everyday should be one for love, I know February is the official love month (well at least it up until the 14th). In honor of the occasion, I’d like to share some of the very things I love.

Some of you know, while I do like my goodies, since I am over 19 now, I do try to eat healthy meals 80% (or better) of the time. This has two benefits: I can eat and enjoy other things (in moderation) when I go out, on holidays, birthdays, etc. Also, and moreover, once you start eating better, you really do not desire the junk as much. I did not think I’d see the day when I could not wait to get home to my spinach. Yep, I said spinach–it’s a favorite! Let me tell you one way I enjoy this versatile green.

A cup of spinach in every sip!
A cup of spinach in every sip!
I am a huge fruit smoothie fan, but just got brave enough to try a “green” smoothie thanks to simplegreensmoothies.com. They had a 30-day green smoothie challenge last month I was too chicken to try, but I decided to take the plunge a few days ago and have had two smoothies almost every day. The site has some good tips, testimonials and even an ebook with smoothie recipes for $5 (for the time being). Investing the few dollars in the book will ensure your smoothies will taste good and you’ll want to drink it. What’s that? Do you taste the spinach? Not a bit–the fruit in the smoothie masks the greens taste! And you don’t need a second mortgage to get started.

Fruit: Fresh or frozen (organic, if possible) your choice

Greens: (organic, if possible) spinach, kale or romaine lettuce and uncooked, of course.

Liquids: almond, soy, rice or cow’s milk, water (filtered or boiled and cooled) or coconut water.

Blender: I use a Hamilton Beach I purchased from Kmart for $20 or so.

On average, it’s a 60/40 ratio of fruit to veggies. Since the green smoothies are packed with fiber and nutrients, you are full for a couple of hours. These make a great snack when you have to be in the car for awhile or you’re running errands. I will eventually move past the spinach and try the other greens, but I believe in a slow hurry sometimes (that’s code for fraidy-cat). 🙀

Bottom line: Trust me, I am a Red Velvet Cake head. If I can do a green smoothie and love it, anyone can! Try it out and let me know how you like it!

Love,

Blen

Rats, Turkeys and Fruit…

 

Hey family!

Be Jive Turkey free!

Summer is fast approaching and in all the sunshine and excitement of the season, we still need to be prayerful and on high turkey alert! I learned a little more about turkeys from rats. Let me  “‘splain.”

I was flipping channels awhile back and caught a show called Rat Wars. It was a show about a New York City exterminator, who was ridding the Big Apple of these pesky rodents, who in some cases had overtaken the homes and businesses of some of his clients.  The guy mentioned that rats were smart creatures, and I thought “yeah, right”. But he was right!

Yep, I am smart~Trust!

What happened was, the exterminator set traps and noticed just a few of the rats were caught. Reason? He said some of the rats watched the others go to the traps and get caught/killed. The rats who stood by were astute enough to know to avoid the trap! If a creature that God made who hasn’t attended a day of school, nor have the Holy Ghost as a guide, knows to watch and avoid entrapment, how much better can we do? I’m just saying……Ok, keep that in mind and read on.

In my travels a few years ago, I met up with a dude in whom we had mutual acquaintances. We got to talking about the folks we knew and life in general, so I mentioned about being my saved, etc. Bozo did inform me that church girls were “easy to get with”–something about desperation and some other monkeyshine not worth repeating.  I don’t know how he thought his statements were attractive, but I was as hot as a freshly lit firecracker!  The truth is either he had that experience or was conducting a test. Either way, I know I wasn’t about to become a case study for Dr. Strangelove!!  If you really want to get to know someone, let them talk–God will let you know what’s up! What’s in the heart comes out of the mouth (Matthew 15:18).

Next is the saved-looking fruit. I notice, is that once we ID the fruit we like, we immediately hook up. “Oh well, there’s a saved-looking pear, that’s the one for me!”  Don’t misunderstand me, if one person is saved, the other NEEDS the Holy Ghost, no doubt. Salvation does not equal compatibility or God’s will.  Experience has taught me there is value in taking your time and developing a friendship based on mutual interests, experiences, goals and values. It’s also important to see where you differ and how negotiable those areas are. This way, if it is not God’s will for you to be together, you hear and see with a clear heart, rather than with a heart that has developed feelings and rationalization. I also believe that in the end, you will remain friends with no hard feelings or unforgiveness.

A former post I wrote about women not being the “low-lying fruit”,  got a little attention from a couple of guys I’m cool with on Facebook.  One young man who had his share of the easy fruit, said that eating fruit off the ground  “can make you sick”.  I didn’t think about that at the time I wrote it, but its true. Many times the fruit that’s just laying on the ground,  although convenient, is overripe, worm-ridden, bug-filled, spotty and rotten.  Sometimes women even go and pick the fruit, (rather than waiting to be picked). How did that work out for you?

Whether you are the low-branch fruit or pick it up, it may fill you up for now, but give you a bellyache, long-term illness or even death! As we mature, it’s important to recognize foolish behavior and correct it immediately. Do not pick off the tree! Didn’t we learn from Eve? LOLOLOL! Seriously, it’s better to wait and be picked properly. Proverbs says 9:6 Forsake the foolish and live; and go in the way of understanding. Why willingly die of from an avoidable case of “foolish”?

The bottom line:  I know there are some fantastic, stand-up guys out there—I am friends with quite a few and look forward to meeting more as my life progresses. In the spirit of watchfulness, the Bible says to watch and pray…(Matt 26:41) AND that you will know folks by their fruit (Matt 7). If it looks like a grape, yet talks thorns, then something is amiss. No matter how many grapes you thought you saw or have continuously look for, it’s a thorn bush. Pray for God’s divine (not permissive) will to be done and clarity in your thoughts and decision making so the decks are clear for your real blessing!

Thanks for reading and be blessed!

Love,

~Blen

Jive Turkey pic: http://www.newsrealblog.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/11/jiveTurkey.png

Rats pic: http://www.show31.com/2012/04/20-amazing-facts-about-rats.html

Something on the inside…

Happy 2012..Let the Lord work on the inside!

Hey family!

It’s been another minute! I was compelled not to let 2011 go and 2012 come without a comment! 😀

So, a little while back, I watched a show* where a young girl was this close to relaxing her curly hair because a boy liked her hair that way. Long story short, it turned out to be a misunderstanding–of course all works out well in on TV! I got thinking..

First…chica even wanting to change her natural hair for some turkey…ya’ll ALREADY know how I feel about that—-BOO! Why we go all out to change who we are to please another human–especially one that God hasn’t sent you or told you is for another post!!  My main thought is around how easy we will change for people…and not so much for God.

While we do want to pay attention our physical appearance, we need to concentrate on what’s happening on the inside. Is God pleased with how we “look”? How much effort do we put into changing for Him?
When we live for Christ, we  should willingly take on His characteristics and personality in our words, thoughts and deeds. While this isn’t “natural” for us, it’s not impossible as God will give us the mind, strength and grace to please Him with the Holy Ghost and Word as our guide.  If we allow Jesus work on the inside, the “fruit” (love, peace, joy, long-suffering, gentleness, faith, meekness, self-control and goodness, Galatians 5:22) will show up on the outside. After all, salvation does indeed beautify us (Psalm 149:4) and will “attract” others to us, as well as “repel” folk that aren’t in a place to have prime time in our lives (by the way that’s a good opportunity to pray).

As 2011 ends and 2012 begins, let us continue to ask God to bless us to beautify the inner man with His word as we continue to bless Him and be who He’s called us to be in Jesus name!

My prayers go out for you all that God’s richest blessings be with you in 2012 and beyond!

Love,

Blen

*The show was Reed Between the Lines with Tracee Ross and Malcolm-Jamal Warner. Currently, it airs on BET on Tuesdays…it also comes on at random times during the week.