I just have to say how much I enjoyed Thanksgiving. The highlight was being with my sister Angie. She looked so great but more than that, her spirit was brighter. You could sense that she is in a better place now and that Heavenly Father has put people in her path these last months to help her on her journey. Her husband Justin, was calm and patient.You can see how much he is trying. I know he loves her and their family and wants more than anything to be successful and take care of his family. They are becoming a good team and just seem like in a better place. As hard as trials are, they truly teach us and do things for us that we could never learn otherwise. They force us to change and if we let the spirit take over and ask the Lord for help, it will be for the better. It is our choice to be bitter and resentful or we can be grateful for all we have and the time we have here on this earth with the ones we love. I am so grateful this year for bringing our family closer, for my sister and her example to me, and for a family that I can live with for eternity with the blessings of the temple.
Some of the gifts that Angie has given to me this past year are perspective of what is really important. I am trying everyday to be more patient with my kids and enjoy them, even though I fail most days. I do keep trying and when I ask the Lord for help and do my part by taking care of myself then it seems to go better on those days. I have also felt a need to love my body, every bit of it. The stretch marks, scars, even the cellulite. No more looking at my arms or thighs and wishing they were smaller. Angie has had to lose her hair and get a bad acne rash over her entire body. Watching her, just made me realize that the things I worry about are not important at all. Why do we focus on weight so much?? Why do we expect perfection? We have these amazing bodies that are truly able to heal and rebuild if we will provide it the things it needs and take away the things that are preventing it from healing. Angie said something to me while we were walking Thanksgiving morning that brought so much joy to me. She said, ” I used to eat just to be skinny. I didn’t really eat unhealthy, but I wasn’t trying to nourish my body. I now eat to feed my body so it can heal.” That my friend, is why I write on a blog. That is why everyday I make the effort to cook good food for my family, and why I think it is worth the effort. I believe that our bodies can heal if we do our part. Heavenly Father wants us to be healthy and happy. What we put into our body is a HUGE part of that. Of course there are many other things we need to make a priority in our life like sleep, meditation, exercise, spiritual nourishment, and forgiveness. We get to wake up everyday and decide what we are putting in our body that day. The good and the bad. How are we talking to our bodies and are we listening to it?
I wanted to share a few photos from the weekend and also an easy recipe that I use all the time, especially on days when I work and don’t have a lot of time. There are some photos of the four sisters in our family and all the girls that were with us that day. I also have one at the 5K we ran on Thanksgiving morning, and Angie was the fastest girl and took 3rd place over all. (AMAZING!) There is also one of my mom who instantly fell asleep as we sat down to eat the dinner she slaved over. Her love language is definitely cooking and cleaning. She never stopped the whole weekend. There is also some of the girl cousins and shopping. They were so sweet as they shed tears when it was time to say goodbye. I wish we all lived closer. What a great Thanksgiving! Family is what life is all about. We were even able to squish in a good dinner out with friends and family to celebrate Nancy’s birthday. I am so blessed to have amazing family on both sides.
We do burgers every week. Usually on Tuesday nights after work, and I always make enough the kids can eat them at lunch the next day. The biggest thing to remember is to use the best quality grassfed meat you can afford. I usually use a combination of Moose and Elk. I know that might sound crazy but I put some great spices in it, cook it in coconut oil and then when it is finished, I add a little grass-fed butter or ghee on the top and let it melt. It is honestly amazing. We just use romaine lettuce leaves as the bun and some organic ketchup, which is still high in sugar, but at least it doens’t have the high fructose corn syrup. That is option. We always put some avocado on top and sometimes add tomatoes and pickles if we have some on hand.
2 lbs ground meat-either organic turkey, grass-fed beef, elk, bison, or mooose.
2 tbs of McCormick Taco seasoning. (I know this probably isn’t the cleanest seasoning but there isn’t any MSG in it and I buy the large container at Costco.)
1 Tbs Organic No Salt Seasoning at Coscto-Kirtland brand
1 Tbs sea salt
Add a pad of grass-fed butter on top of every burger before serving. This makes it taste so good and you can skip the ketchup if you want. Butter, I am so glad your back in my life!!!
Mix all together with hands, make patties, and cook in a coconut oil greased pan. I cook on a med high heat and try to cook them slowly. Then add all the fixings and enjoy. We really love them with some roasted veggies or maybe some home made sweet potato fries and some sauerkraut.
Remember that some organic meat is really great for you because it is so hard to get the amino acids your body needs with a 100% vegetarian diet. Organ meats are the most nutritional, but a little harder to get into us because of the taste. Toxic meat, or commercial meat should not be consumed but finding a local farmer or looking for sales at Whole Foods, Trader Joes, or Sprouts and then stocking up will help with the cost. We have less meat and better quality. Vegetables are always what should take the majority of the plate, and then the highest calories on the plate should be from good fats. It is great to get some good protein with every meal but you can rotate getting it from plant sources and high quality animal sources. Here is a table that shows what we can get from high quality protein from animals.
High-quality protein B complex, including B12 and folate (folic acid) Minerals, including a highly bioavailable form of iron
Fats (especially omega-3 fats8) Choline (another B vitamin, important for cell membranes, brain and nerve function, heart health, and prevention of birth defects)9 Trace minerals such as copper, zinc and chromium
Cholesterol10 CoQ10 (essential for energy production and cardiac function; potent antioxidant; animal hearts offer the highest levels of coQ10) Vitamin D
Vitamin E (circulation, tissue repair, healing, deactivation of free radicals, slowing aging) Pre-formed vitamin A (retinol) An unidentified “anti-fatigue factor”
Purines11 (nitrogen containing compounds serving as precursors to DNA and RNA) Vitamin K2 Amino acids