10 Gluten Free Apple Recipes for Fall

18
Sep
2017

10 gluten free apple recipes for fall

The weather is getting cooler, and the trees are getting heavy with amazing apples just ready for picking!

We live in Washington, also known as the apple state!  We have orchards that stretch miles and they are gorgeous.  We also grab a huge box of apples in the beginning of October as part of a fundraiser our friends are involved in, so having some yummy apple recipes is a must.

Apple Muffins (grain-free, gluten-free)

Healthy Apple Pie Oatmeal Breakfast Bake

Cinnamon Apple Chips

Apple Cinnamon Scones

Swedish Apple Pie (gluten-free, vegan, dairy-free, 100% whole grain)

Cinnamon Apple Energy Bites

Apple Walnut Spinach Salad 

Zucchini Apple Fritter Bread – Gluten Free 

Healthy Gluten Free Apple Bread Recipe

Gluten Free Apple Pie Bars

Easy Gluten Free Apple Custard Cake

Five Back to School Tips & Tricks

11
Sep
2017

5 back to school tips and tricks

We just started back to school on Tuesday – much later than many of you.  Our family ended summer with a nice beach fire and it was delightful!

The transition to the school year can be hard, but I have found several tips and tricks that help our family get back into the groove with less stress, anxiety and losing our patience!  

I cover many awesome tips in my Back 2 School Survival Guide – a wonderful resource with topics every parent wants to be in the know about, as well as editable PDF printables to help things run smoothly!  It has been a life saver for many of you who have grabbed it over the years.

Let’s cover some of my top tips to help with the beginning of the school year!

Rhythm and Routine

Just like a rhythm and routine is critical to our success as a mother and manager of our home, our kids need a very similar routine to succeed.   I shared specific steps to create a morning routine for your child in a previous post and know it will help you.  We all want to send our kids off to school with a feeling of success, instead of failure.  

When expectations are not clearly outlined for our children, they lose focus, control and feel lost.  It is up to use to help them have an outline.  The same goes for after school expectations.  Creating a printable list for tasks for your child to complete after school helps develop independence as well as a pride in their work.

Promote Healthy Focus

Oh mama – this is an area we deal with daily!!  We have a little guy who struggles with focusing and staying on task. I have had to come up with some effective ways to keep us both sane!

This is where we open my mom toolbox of beloved essential oils.  I am able to easily mix up a blend of Cedarwood, Vetiver, and Lavender essential oils in a roller ball bottle, add a bit of carrier oil – like Young Living’s V-6 or some coconut oil and we are armed!

I’ve been using this blend on my seven year old since he was three – because it works!  It helps him stay focused, calms his little mind down from racing and helps him have a successful day by completing tasks and schoolwork successfully.  Don’t we want that for our kids?

And, if you happen to struggle with focus, I mean… some of us amazing moms do….this blend is for you too!  All ages and stages – one of the reasons I love having essential oils in my mom toolbox!

the focus roller - cedar wood, vetiver, lavender essential oils

Prep for Healthy Lunches

We all know a healthy breakfast will help your child have a great morning, but do you really take into consideration the lunch you pack and how it will either help your child with great energy during their afternoon, or perhaps impact their body in a negative way? 

Last year I bought a small compartment bento lunch box and it was the best investment I have made in helping me with packing a fun and healthy lunch.  Not only did the lunchbox last the entire school year, we are using it this year too!  

I love the compartments and that I can easily find healthy items to put into each section, like lunchmeat rolled up with some cheese, some diced kiwi (my sons favorite!) dry roasted almonds, carrots, celery and even olives.  I also grabbed these small containers and they fit right inside the container slots and I can add things like the olives without the juice flowing to other items and the main lid just fits right on.

Sending sugary items, foods filled with lots of additives can really affect your child in a negative way.  Some food can even make them irritable and groggy, so take some time to send good for them items!

Good Sleep

You might think this is just for your child, but we all need a restful nights sleep.  Allowing our body to regenerate and rest. 

Does your child struggle to wind down at the end of the day?

Do they toss and turn until late in the evening before they settle in to sleep?

Do they wake in the morning finding it hard to get up and get going?

Perhaps you fall into one of those situations?

Here again, our essential oil collection provides an easy and totally natural way to promote a really restful nights sleep.

Back-to-School-Restful-Sleep

Our favorite blend to apply topically or use in our diffuser, is Lavender and Cedarwood essential oils.  However, we love having other oils to interchange in order to clam us down in the evening.  I will often put some Stress Away in the diffuser while we are settling down after dinner and the magic begins!  Bedtime routines are much easier, as everyone is ready to brush teeth, read and snuggle down into bed.

Space to Exhale

Our lives are busy and with the beginning to the school year often comes many after school activities.  However, I have found it very beneficial to have some down time immediately after school, instead of just rushing off to the next thing.

When your child comes home, spend a few minutes with them to ask about their day.  Finding time to just exhale from all the activity of the day is a great transition for kids.  Depending on your schedule and your day, I suggest allotting at least 15-20 minutes for your child to just relax.  Just like you and I need some downtime, your child really benefit form it too.

Here’s to a great school year for you and your family!

Interested in essential oils? Now is the BEST time to get started.

You can get a starter set of essential oils called the premium starter kit (with 11 oils and a diffuser) as well as $25 cash back, reference material and MORE from me! You’ll also get access to my members-only online community to learn how to use your oils and get lots of education and support.

7 Money Saving Hacks for the Minimalist Want To Be

19
Jul
2017

Money Saving Hacks for Minimalists

For the past year, our family has been on a journey to “less” – now commonly known as minimalism.  It has been amazing and I would encourage you to look at how you can shift your lifestyle as well.  

One area I get asked about often is how we are living on less and saving more.  Here are just a few quick hacks I have for you in the area of saving money when living with less.

Use Amazon to it’s Fullest

Since moving to a more remote location, it is even more critical that we use services that deliver items we use consistently to our home.  It means less driving, less gas used and less stress.  I use amazon for almost anything I can, because it just makes plain sense.  We have a monthly subscribe and save order with my favorite coffee creamer, organic pumpkin for my favorite no sugar smoothie, cocoa powder, and more.  Items we need every month are in our order, delivered right to our door.

One Product for Multiple Uses

Since simplifying our life and also focusing on a healthier toxic-free lifestyle, we’ve managed to save money and eliminate things that were not only wasting our money but promoting illness.  Since going into remission from Lupus, through helping my body to heal itself (so so grateful!!), I’ve learned the chemicals I were using in my home were poisoning my entire family.  Now I use one cleaner for all our needs – cleaning stove-tops, counter, floors, showers, windows and more.  One bottle taking space under my counter instead of ten to twelve.  Thieves Household Cleaner is the one for me!  It’s concentrated, all plant based and I can make up a bottle with the exact level of cleaning I need for a job.  

Stop Buying Bottled Water

We make this decision several years ago and are so happy.  Instead of wasting the money on bottled water and adding to all the plastic bottle waste, we purchased a BIG BERKEY and have amazing filter and fluoride free water at our finger tips.  Each family member have glass water bottles and we fill those when we are headed out and re-use them.  Yes, the cost of the Berkey is an initial expense, but the savings over time is great.  We even have the Go Berkey to use on the road.

Wash in Cold Water

Most detergents work just as well in cold water as they do in hot. We have been using cold water on all but our sheets and it has worked great.  My favorite detergent in the Thieves Laundry detergent, also a concentrate and amazingly effective.  When you can switch to cold, your clothes and your energy bill will thank you!

Get Rid of Clutter

This is a process – we’ve done the clutter reduction and purging three times in the last year.  It feels amazing to live in a small space and not have every counter or table top covered in stuff!  When you have less around, you reduce the risk of buying soothing you truly don’t need plus you can easily find things, so you are not wasting time.

Be Smart About Organic

As I have grown in my journey to give my family the best of toxic-free living, I’ve learned where it’s important to prioritize.  We can’t buy everything organic, so it is helpful to know what is most prone to be contaminated with chemicals and worth buying organic.  You can check out the list of the “Dirty Dozen,” and determine what is truly most important to buy organic.

Reduce Your Wardrobes

Just how many pairs of jeans does a person need?  I am in the process of reducing my wardrobe and really want to dive into the Project 333 — still thinking, but in the meantime I have cleared my closet considerably and it is so freeing!  By investing only in clothes you actually love and enjoy wearing it is easy to keep things organized and you actually look forward to getting dressed each morning!  I am in the process to do this with my  seven year old – to reduce his clothing as well.  

 

5 Lessons from Small Space Living

8
Jun
2017

5 lessons from small space living

In September of last year we moved from a 3400 square foot home to a 500 square foot carriage house, thrusting us into small space living. This was an “eventual” plan of ours, to move to our vacation property full-time, but we put things into fast forward last summer and ditched city living for a slower pace.

It has been a huge season of change, building new relationships, finding a new church, learning to truly enjoy a slow pace, but most importantly learning to let go of stuff and live small.

We are preparing to build our dream home here at the beach, but for now, we are living in a small space, the three of us and our two doodle dogs.  You can view our home, which was highlighted on one of my favorite blogs House of Turquoise almost three years ago.   It is a small space and I will tell you – it looks pretty much like that even today -with us living in it!

What I have most enjoyed about this season, is realizing that living small is an amazing freedom and I’ve learned a few lessons that are pretty powerful.

Less Indoor Space Means More Time Outdoors

We moved to the beach to slow down and enjoy the little things more.  The frantic pace of suburbia and all the traffic was exhausting us.  Here at the beach, we spend way more time outside and this includes my seven year old.  He’s outside constantly – and he doesn’t mind the wind, rain or clouds at all.  We walk the dogs more, we find a reason to go for a bike ride – and really – do you need a reason?

I don’t need 28 sweaters

Moving into a small space meant I needed to clean out my closet – BIG TIME!! I realized I had clothes that I didn’t really love – and too many of them.  Truly – how many sweaters do you really need?  I have been de-cluttering my closet now for over six months.  It is freeing and so empowering.  It means less choices in the morning and actually looking forward to getting dressed because the clothes I have I really like wearing!  

Clutter Suffocates

This is not a new discovery – but I can tell you, having less in my home means I can breathe.  Its okay that not every counter or shelf has decor or something placed there.  It provides a sense of relief honestly.  In a small space you enjoy having less – it provides room to just BE.  We must make a decision about whether we are keeping something NOW, not put it aside and wait until another time and then decide after it’s been stuffed in a drawer for five years to purge it.

Less Stuff = Less Stress

Being purposeful about what we have in our home and what we treasure has provided a huge stress relief.  The guilt about getting rid of things that I felt I needed to keep has been conquered.  This can take a bit of time, believe me – I was having a hard time with old photos and such, but then we decided to scan photos and take pictures of memorabilia instead of keeping the item.    We you begin to experience the freedom in parting with things that are in boxes and not enjoyed daily, it begins to be much easier to make decisions for the future.

The Best Things in Life Aren’t Things

I am sure you’ve heard this before, but it is true.  I have more time to spend doing activities rather than cleaning, picking up, organizing, storing, purging or doing upkeep.  We can visit friends, invite someone over, do an impromptu get together or get out of town at the last minute.  When you have a small space with less things, it provides time freedom as well as emotional freedom.

This is a season for us, we will be building a larger home and moving into a bigger space within the next year and a half, but this has been one of the best life lessons I have had – living small and learning how to determine what it really important.

Does living small appeal to you?

Homemaking Just Got Easier!!!

26
Apr
2017

homemaking bundle

It’s not like you expected homemaking to be a piece of cake.

But you had no idea you’d be so tired, frustrated, and overwhelmed, right?

I’ve often felt the same way. When I first became a wife and mom years ago, I needed GPS to find my way around the kitchen. Oh, and developing systems to efficiently handle laundry and cleaning? Um… do I have to answer that?

Homemaking is filled with mundane tasks that never end, but here’s the thing: do you want to spend more time overwhelmed by things you don’t enjoy?

No, no, you do not.

So what if you could find resources to help you become better at homemaking (and maybe even learn to love it)?

Well, look no further, because I found something that might be just what you need: The Ultimate Homemaking Bundle.

For six days only, everything you need (and then some) is in one fabulous package, for the most affordable price ever. (Seriously, just wait until I tell you the price.)

This year’s edition of the Ultimate Homemaking Bundle includes 50 ebooks, 21 eCourses, 14 printables, 2 videos, 2 audios, 2 summits, and 1 membership site.

These top-quality resources cover everythingyou need to make homemaking and mothering feel less stressful… quick & healthy recipes, homemaking printables, cleaning tips, sizzling date night ideas, parenting helps, and so much more.

For less than the cost of a meal out (and you won’t need to be rescued by drive-thru after this!), you’ll get a complete library to help you:

  • Cook up wholesome recipes for your family
  • Build stronger relationships with your kids (even your teens)
  • Discover speedy cleaning routines for the toughest messes
  • Rekindle the romance in your marriage
  • Put self-care back into your life
  • and finally enjoy homemaking.

Plus, it comes with over $290 worth of bonus offers from companies you’ll love (this is one of my favorite parts).

My Favorite Picks in the Bundle:::

  • Matters of the Heart: a 52-Week Scripture Memorization Journey for Women by Carlie Kercheval ($10.00)
  • Cozy Minimalist Decorating Class by Myquillyn Smith ($39.00)
  • What’s 4 Dinner Challenge Meal Planning eCourse by Erin Odom and Holly Dvorak ($47.00)
  • 21 Days to a More Disciplined Life by Crystal Paine ($4.99)
  • Productivity and Well-Being eCourse by Lisa Grace Byrne ($47.00)
  • Making Big Life Changes Together: Pursuing Your Dreams as a Couple by Haley Stewart ($3.99)
  • 30 Days, 30 Ways for Mothers to Take Care of Themselves by Angela Henderson ($19.95)

Just those favorites would total $171.93 if bought separate – so I am grabbing this bundle for the lower price of $29.95!

You sort of need to see it to believe it, but the package includes 106 digital products and it’s worth over $1980!

Besides being so incredibly helpful, one of the things I like best about the bundle is the price. By offering it for a short time only, they’re able to give you access to over $1980 worth of amazing products for a whopping 97% off!

Here’s how it works:

  1. Visit their website, take a quick look at all the goodness that comes in this package, then click the “Get my copy now!” button to go through their simple and secure 3-step checkout process.
  2. You’ll receive an email with a login to their online access portal, where you’ll begin downloading your eBooks, signing up for your eCourses, and redeeming your free bonus offers.
  3. Use their Getting Started Guide to pick the topic you want to tackle first and start your stress-less homemaking journey!

The most important detail, though, is that this bundle is available for just six days! After Monday night, May 1st, the sale ends and you’d have to buy all of these products individually.

I’d hate for you to miss out, so click HERE to learn more or buy the bundle.

It’s even backed by a 100% happiness guarantee, so you can make sure it’s right for you.

No one should have to feel overwhelmed by homemaking because it costs too much or they can’t get the help they need.

Becoming efficient as a homemaker is one thing. Fully embracing all the messy moments and hard times and loving it (most days) is another. But it’s not out of reach.

Learn more or get your bundle HERE.

(Psst… the bundle goes away at 11:59pm Eastern on Monday, May 1st, so don’t wait!)

You also get these amazing bonuses too!!!

  • $15 store credit from Cultivate What Matters (international shipping available)
  • Free 1 month subscription from Kiwi Crate, $20 value ($15 off $50 shop purchase for existing customers, shipping available to U.S. & Canada)
  • Free 1 month MightyFix shipment from Mighty Nest, $17 value ($15 store credit toward next add-on order for existing MightyFix subscribers, international shipping available)
  • One project box from Detox Project Box, $25 value (shipping available to U.S. & Canada)
  • Free 1 month subscription from Bookroo, $18 value (box of past favorites for existing customers, international shipping available)
  • $15 store credit from Orglamix (international shipping available)
  • $15 store credit from Strawesome (international shipping available)
  • Digital download of the 2017 Hope Ink Calendar, $20+ value -or- $15 credit + 3 art prints from Hope Ink, $99 value (international shipping available)
  • Homeowner Lifetime Membership from HomeBinder, $120 value (digital)
  • Free 1 year annual membership from MollyGreen.com, $29 value (digital)

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