Thursday, May 30, 2013

Chicken Sausage && Veggies over Spaghetti Squash

New Recipe I just whipped together the other night. So tasty and so easy! 

(note: The ingredients are just estimates... just add or remove according to your liking)
Pack of organic chicken sausage
1 Green Pepper
1 Orange pepper
1/2 Onion 
1 Can of Diced Tomatoes 
2-3 Tablespoons of Pesto **KEY Ingredient**
1 Spaghetti Squash 

Minced Garlic
Chili Powder
Onion Powder
Olive Oil


1- Heat Oven at 350 degrees, cut your spaghetti squash in half and bake for an hour or so... Take a fork and pit out the spaghetti squash (remove seeds as you do this) if it needs a bit more time just stick it back in for another 15 min or so... 

2- Cut up the sausage in chunks and heat over a skillet with olive oil. Cut up peppers and onions in strips and heat over olive oil and minced garlic in a separate pan. When the sausage has basically cooked through add the the cooked peppers and onions to that pan and also add a the can of diced tomatoes. Saute everything together and add spices. Cook on medium heat for a at least 20-30 minutes or until your spaghetti squash is ready. Add the pesto the last 3-5 minutes before serving. Serve over the cooked spaghetti squash. Wah lah! Easy Yumness... 

Friday, May 24, 2013

New PR's!

I hit two new personal records last night. I've only been lifting for a little over a year now and I wish I would have started a long time ago. I love weight training! A lot of women get discouraged or weirded out to lift but I'll be honest and say that I love being strong and I want to get stronger

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Studyin Galatians

I'm going through Galatians slowly on my own and just studying it for what it is. I've never studied a book in the bible intricately on my own before. I have through sermons and studies with groups etc. I'm not a bible scholar. I've not gone to bible school for this so of course I'm sure I may be missing quite a few things but it's always awesome to see what the Lord opens my eyes to. 

Galatians Chapter 1 Versus 1 & 2

1- Paul, an apostle- sent not from men nor by man, but by Jesus Christ and God the Father, who raised him from the dead. 2- and all the brothers and sisters with me, To the churches in Galatia. 

Paul is identified as an apostle here which is a chosen follower of Christ. If you are not familiar with who Paul is and how he was chosen by God, you can find his transformation story in Acts Chapter 9. I love the fact that God chose Paul to be an apostle and used him drastically in the spreading of the news of Jesus Christ. Paul wrote almost half of the new testament (13 out of 27 books). Before he met Christ, he was nothing but a sinner in this world heading straight for eternal destruction. He was a murderer and of Christians for that matter. It still astonishes me that God used an unwilling man to further and better his kingdom. Just stopping for a second and thinking about that gives me the chills.. That is one of my favorite things about the Lord is he chooses to use us for his good even we are unwilling or even with little or no desire to be used. This is a great example of not only his power to be able to transform a heart instantly but also a direct reflection of his heart as he doesn't look upon us with hatred and worthlessness but with love and value to himself. He wants to rescue us and wants us to come to him and allow him to change our hearts. I do not believe that love ever stops. He loves his people in whom he created. He wants our attention and wants us to reach our full potential as his creation. Ephesians 1:4 says, "For he chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight." Even though we are sinners God will continue to transform our hearts to be like his- which is how he created us to be. The next part says that he was not sent from men or by man but by Jesus Christ and God the Father who raised him from the dead. I think this is a good imagery of the trinity (Father, Son, Holy Spirit). Since God the Father, raised Jesus Christ from the dead we are now able to have the Holy Spirit working in us as a transformer and mediator. The holy spirit is what works in and through us to guide and direct us as well as change us internally. In verse two he says "and all the brothers and sisters with me, to the churches in Galatia" he is speaking of all the men and women who share in the acceptance and joy of the gospel that is Jesus Christ. He is writing this book in particular to the churches in Galatia. 

Regarding the Churches of Galatia in this time:
"His readers knew the gospel. Yet they had willingly accepted a false gospel of human effort. So Paul looked in some detail at what the law can and cannot do. It cannot save. It cannot bring righteousness. It cannot provide any power at all, just a list of dos and don'ts. Only the Holy Spirit provides the power to keep the law." - quoted directly from my Zondervan bible. 

It's crazy to think how even as Christians we still struggle with this mind set at times. We don't always get it that it's by grace that we have been saved. There is absolutely nothing we can do to win God's favor. We just need to rest in the truth that it's by his love and grace alone that we are able to have a relationship with him and be a part of his eternal promise. I'm just humbled by the fact that God chooses to love me each day no matter how much of a sucky daughter I am. His love will never fail us. 

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Paleo Coconut Flour Brownies

Paleo Coconut Flour Brownies

Found this recipe online- there are so many paleo brownie recipes and this one is pretty decent. I like how there are no nuts or almond meal required too. Easy Peasy Paleo!

1/2 Cup Coconut Flour
1/2 Cup Unsweetened Cacao Powder
4 Eggs 
1/2 Cup Natural Honey
1 Teaspoon Vanilla
1/3 Cup Melted Butter or Coconut Oil 

1) Preheat oven to 350 degrees and begin by whisking the coconut flour and cacao powder together.
2) Whisk eggs, honey, melted butter (or coconut oil), and vanilla together until smooth
3) Mix the dry and wet ingredients together.
4) Place parchment paper in pan or oil with coconut oil. Spread batter evenly throughout the pan and bake for 20- minutes or until inserted toothpick comes out clean.
                                Cut into squares and serve.

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Keep that BA Mentality!

Its crazy how discouraged we get at times about things. I'd have to say I get discouraged quite a bit when it comes to getting fit/healthier/losing weight. I mean it's been an ongoing issue my entire life. I've always struggled with it and sometimes I feel like I will absolutely never reach my goals at all. In reality though I try to constantly remind myself that I'm 23 years old and have soaked in unhealthy and bad habits for at least 21 of those years and I cannot fix these habits overnight or over a few months. I started being more "health conscious  about 2-3 years ago when I started long distance running. Those were the days of canning the soda habit and trying to drink water instead. Also trying to eat more greens rather than grains etc.. you know, the basics. 

Though my choices were better they are no where near where I am today and that is what I need to think about when I get discouraged. Yes I may not have lost all of the weight I've wanted to but I'm a heck of a lot stronger, faster and healthier than I've been in my entire life. I have about 12 or so pounds or so of weight I would really like to lose and I believe I will get there in due time. I have really gotten more strict on my eating and training in the past four or so months so I can't wait to see where I am even just a year from now. I've transformed my eating and cooking habits to follow the paleo diet as closely as possible and I've loved the journey so far. The food is amazing and it is also fun to see other people notice the results and want to make the same habit changes. That makes it all the more worth it since there are so many people close to me who have the same problems I did/have. I always try to have the mentality of being an example to others. Maybe that is the teacher side in me but let's face it- you are what you eat and you are who you hang out with. That makes me think not about the people I'm hangin with as much as the person I am. Am I bettering the people around me? Am I encouraging them? I only hope so. 

When I get discouraged I also like to look to some pretty Bad A$$ chicks for motivation. When I look at healthy crossfit girls like this I remind myself that there is no way I could ever look like that eating crap. They may not be perfect and they still may have cheat days and all but overall those are healthy people! People I look to for encouragement and motivation. 

Far fetched maybe but where is the challenge when aiming for the attainable? 

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Just Me Blabbing...

Looking around my house trying to picture the next year to two years is starting to scare me. I look around at all my things I've acquired throughout the years. I've been on my own since I was barely 18 and have always felt as if I was in control and independent so to speak.. the first half of the years on my own were horrible and difficult while the last half so far have been absolutely great. As I always say, God has blessed me greatly- more than I deserve. But I think he pushing me in a direction that not only scares me but is basically requiring me to just rely on him and his plan for me. I'm always praying to the Lord asking for his will to be done in my life and for him to show me the direction he wants me to go, but if i'm at all honest, my feet don't move as fast as they probably should after I pray these prayers. It is very hard for me to make major decisions in my life- not that I do not want to but I guess sometimes I get a bit scared with the "not knowing"- probably makes me sound a bit boring with no adventure at all. In my defense.. I have plenty of adventure.. I just like to be smart about it if that makes

 I'll admit, I definitely need to practice "letting go and letting God" more and I really truly think that over the next year he is going to be making me be more like that. I'm nearly 24 years old and sometimes I feel way older. I feel as if i'm set in this life somehow- this comfortable living of work, school, play, repeat. Nothing wrong with that of course but I think the Lord is nudging that it's time for a change. It's time for adventure. It's time to let go and "go with the flow" for once. It's time for new memories, new experiences, new phases. And I think he is right.

As I've stated before in my other posts, i'm a big journal-er  I love to write about my random thoughts even if no one is reading. It helps me think and evaluate my life and myself. It somewhat slows me down to reality and gets my focus in line. As I stair at my book shelf I have several old journals I have written in just over the past 6 years. I dare not open and read them afraid some crazy stuff might fly out of there... I've walked down some heavy roads, dark ones- emotionally. I look back and feel as if i'm in another lifetime sometimes. Like those pages are just a story i'm reading. Like that was never my life before. I never thought or felt those things- those things never happened to me. But they did. They may not be a part of my life now but they are a direct reason of why I am who I am right now. 

For the longest time I felt as if I was going down down down.. then the Lord came in and lifted me up and brought me higher than I could ever imagine. These days - I feel as if i'm just soaring through life trying to get through school which is one of my main focuses right now for myself. I do complain yet in reality I have nothing to complain about. I have a home, nice things, a job, a great big family whom I love, friendships that I know will be everlasting and good health along with many other things. One of my favorite pastors - Matt Chandler once said "If your not coming out of a storm or currently in one, get ready because your heading for one". ((PURE WISDOM!!-love it!)) - Because it is so true isn't it? And right now I'd have to say, i'm past a storm, i'm not currently in one so I know there is one ahead. So how do I- me prepare for this storm? It's not do what I have been doing which is- not reading my bible which is filled with amazing truth and real armor of protection for the mind and heart. No I need to be clinging to the cross, clinging to the word and saturating myself in it's truth so that when this storm arises I will be ready to withstand it- however long it lasts. 

Maybe this storm isn't in the near future and i'll be here soaring for  while longer.. whatever it may be- I need to learn how to trust the Lord and rely on him for direction in my life instead of trying to create a comfortable nest for myself. That is exactly what I believe the Lord is up to. If I wont move voluntarily he's going to make me- because he is in control and he knows best. So I sit here yes very scared of the unknown and how different life is going to look. But like I said before- I'm overly blessed because I have an amazing navigator- Even though I have absolutely no idea where i'm going and what i'll be doing- he does and he will never ever navigate me in the wrong direction- he will never send me somewhere without him being there with me and he will never put me in a place without fully equipping me with the abilities to follow through. I may be weak, but he is strong- I may not have this, but He does. Man oh man am I glad he does..