Wednesday, October 5, 2011

It's part of my story

Surrounding me on this October 4th, as I think about baby Liliana we may have had on this day 2 years ago, are others in my life who are grappling with very difficult challenges.  Cancer. Threatened pregnancy. And all kinds of other chaos.  I sit here thinking about how calm my life is at this moment.  How many pieces of my life (our life) are actually going in the direction we've intended.  By no means am I saying the days are easy... just that in perspective, I have a whole lot to be thankful for and I realize how important it is to take a moment and just say 'thank you' for getting me here. To this place where in this moment, things are as I hoped and wished they would be.  I am fully aware that there are ebbs and flows - and while so often the challenging times take precedence, right now - this moment needs to be celebrated.

I am listening to a podcast on cancer - in hopes of finding help for my friend, and this woman is talking about coming to terms with the diagnosis of cancer.  Finding a way to make it a part of your identity.  When I lost Maya and Liliana, I compared my pain to what it must be like to be a cancer patient.  The alone-ness of it.  The isolation and need to help yourself when no one else can.  Being isolated in pain.  And as I came through my losses, I had to realize that I was now that person - the one who had a miscarriage, then two.  I was the mother of a dead baby.  My paperwork will always say 4 pregnancies, 2 children.   Just as someone with cancer has to deal with being "that person" - the one with cancer. The one who's paper work will always say "in remission."

And as I got farther away from the losses,  all the efforts we made to make sense of those times,  all the food changes, all the education, it all changed our life.  And now, our little lost babies are forever a part of our story.  Not painful anymore.  Although I'm still in awe of what I went through.  But I've come to accept it.  And I'm actually happy that I will have two children holding two little pumpkins in honor of their sisters (when I get to take the picture after the rain stops!).  I'm at peace and I'm blessed. And I'm so thankful that I have the perspective of whole food and nutrition, integrative and holistic medicine, and the recognition that we can find answers and cures to what ails us, in raising two kiddos who are going to need these options more than any other generation.  Thank you Maya and Liliana for providing the hope of a long, long life to your sister and brother.

So on this October 4th, I say a big giant prayer, for my friends who are struggling to deal with and accept a new reality.  Who still have a chance at writing their own story and who need a little help in getting there.  My commitment is to be the researcher. Cuz that's what I've to get information on how to heal our bodies.  And to give the message that you will come to terms with your new reality. And someday, in the distant future, you will have a chance to look at how your story unfolded, how it changed you, and how it's become part of your identity.

Happy Birthday Liliana.  I thought of you all day today.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Kale Chips

Last week I tried these and they were super popular.  This week I'm going to try dehydrating them and see how that works.

Kale Chips
1 or more bunches curly kale, rinsed and chopped.
1 T olive oil
1 t sea salt
1 T apple cider vinegar

Put kale in a baggie and pour other ingredients in.  Massage till well coated.
Place on cookie sheet and bake in oven at 375 for 18 minutes.

Who needs a milk shake when you can have Orange Julius?

This is the best ever. I call it...
Orange Julius
1 cup raw brazil nut milk (could use any milk but I really like it with the brazil nut milk)
1 cup fresh squeezed orange juice
1 banana
1 cup frozen mango

Blend till it's like a milkshake.

Try to share it ;-)

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Sausage and Artichoke Soup, Granola Bars, Scallops and Cauliflower

Here are some must try recipes:

Sausage and Artichoke Soup 
(from Sunset Magazine - January 2011)
3-4 sausages, casing removed, chopped up
1 bag of frozen artichokes
1 large bunch of swiss chard
6 cups veggie broth
2 cups water
salt/pepper to taste

Saute sausage till cooked thru
Add broth and water and artichokes
Add chard for last 10 mins to wilt and add salt/pepper to taste

Mostly Raw Granola Bars
(also from Sunset 1/11)

1/3 c each pecans and almonds, chopped (largely)
1/2 c honey (warmed to ensure a syrupy consistency for easier stirring)
1 t cinnamon
1/2 cup each chopped apples and cranberries (or other dried fruit)
2 1/2 c rolled oats
3/4 c dates, chopped

In a food processor (vitamix does not work for this), whirl the oats so they are chopped up (but not a flour).  Pour into bowl and add cinnamon.  Mix together.
In a food processor, whirl the dates and add oats slowly. Drizzle honey and whirl slowly (pulse).  You may have to separate clumps to get it to completely blend together.
Take out and put in bowl. Add berries and nuts and combine with hands and make into a ball.
Put wax paper in 9x13 pyrex dish, spray nonstick oil.  Put ball on wax paper and mash it out till it makes about a 1 inch layer that fills the dish.  Freeze for about 1/2 hour till it is easy to cut into bars. Should make 12 bars.  Try not to eat them all at once!

Scallops and Cauliflower
(Cauliflower idea from Sunset 1/11 - scallops on my own)

1 large head cauliflower
Pancetta, bacon, or prochiuto
1 brown onion
2 cloves garlic
1 bag bay scallops from Trader Joes

Chop and saute onion and garlic till opaque, then add cauliflower (chopped up) and meat and cook with cover on for 10-15 minutes (until cauliflower is tender).
Remove from pan and put in dish.
Add 2 T butter to pan. When melted, add scallops and cook about 5 minutes until white all the way through.
Combine scallops with broccoli mixture and serve.

I put this on top of Soba noodles which was wonderful....but optional!

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Left Over Green Smoothie Roll-Ups

We had a great idea this week to put our left over smoothies to good use...dehydrate them! Why didn't I think of that sooner? So many smoothies down the drain that could have had a second life! The kids were all over the left-over spinach smoothie roll-ups!

Today I made a simple smoothie (approximate measurements):
4 cups of water
2 cups of spinach
1 banana
1 cup of frozen mango chunks

I poured about 1 cup of smoothie left-overs onto the teflon dehydrator sheet and dehydrated it for about five hours at 104 degrees. It was perfect and thin. Easy to tear-off and enjoy!