Spring Fever is an Understatement

“Snow was falling,
so much like stars
filling the dark trees
that one could easily imagine
its reason for being was nothing more
than prettiness.”
― Mary Oliver

April 16, 2017 on the left.
April 16, 2018 on the right. Last year we were planting blueberry bushes and this year the bushes are buried under several feet of snow. There are 10+ foot snowdrifts in our pasture.

Meesha is a bundle of energy!

Snow days in April are not unusual in the UP of Michigan. However, that does not soften the blow. As John and I discussed yesterday, April snow storms usually torment us AFTER the majority of our snow has already melted and it is gone within a couple of days. However, over the past couple of days we received over THIRTY inches of snow ON TOP of the snow lingering from the winter.

While it is depressing and feels like a setback to our growing season, the kids were thrilled to have two snow days off of school (this teacher did not complain 😉 ) and the weather outlook for the next couple of weeks looks hopeful. We should be seeing temperatures close to the 50s by the weekend and into next week. That means that it should be close to 100 in the hoop house.

Speaking of the hoop house: check out these photos of John, Avalon, and Lukas digging it out yesterday after the storm.
The dogs were in their glory and were exhausted last night after a spirited frolic in the snow!

Gentle Ollie taking a break. He LOVES the snow.

Remi our faithful protector is not sure what to think.

Giant April snow banks!

Avalon and I took advantage of our snow days to create a new video for our YouTube channel. As you can tell from the video, this new medium is a little awkward for me, but Avalon is a natural! In this video we share a few of the things that we “cannot live without”. It was a blast to film it together and we hope to be able to create more content about our farm, recipes, and DIY projects.

Please make sure to subscribe to our Channel: Superior Maple Grove Farm and leave us a comment to let us know you were there and what kind of videos you would like us post!

I hope that your spring is going well and that you are excited about gardening. I will post updates as we get our seedlings planted in the hoop house. I also promise to post more healthy recipes to help you put your homegrown, or farmer’s market produce, to great use. Thank you for following our adventures. If you are in the snow belt like we are – stay warm, stay safe, and hold on tight — spring is near! ❤

Advertisements

Creamy Lemon & Dill Soup ~ Plant-Based Comfort Food

Creamy Lemon & Dill Soup by Produce with AmyGet people back into the kitchen and combat the trend toward processed food and fast food. ~ Andrew Weil

I have a confession to make. Ever since I switched to plant-based meals, I sometimes find myself in a food rut. Yes, I probably eat a wider range of foods now than I did before, but I find myself sometimes craving old favorites. While I would love my new lifestyle to be uncomplicated, at times it is not.

The story of why I choose plants over meat is multi-layered. My mom said she always knew that I would be a vegetarian when I was growing up because I always favored vegetables. In college I dabbled with meatless meals and found that I really did not miss meat. Approximately four years ago I decided to give up meat again and I found my life transforming.

My decision was based on a number of factors. After my husband Mike suffered a brain hemorrhage I started to re-evaluate what I was putting into our shopping cart. I started to purchase local and organic meat from our community food co-op. However, when Mike went back to school full-time, we could not swing the heftier price tag of organic poultry and grass-fed beef. At this time it was an easy choice for me to stop eating meat. Basic economics coupled with my compassion for animals made this the right choice. I feel that there is already so much suffering in the world and I do not want my meals to contribute to any more pain. The shift was easy since I had been leaning this way for a long time and out pocketbook gave me the nudge I needed.

To any meat eaters reading my blog, I promise you that it is not my purpose to try to convert you to only eating plants. However, as I tell my Weight Watchers members, I challenge you to seek out Vegan and vegetarian recipes because these recipes will maximize protein and nutrients. Many of my members incorporate a few meatless meals a week into their meal plan and find it helps both their grocery budget and their waist lines.

While I choose to eat mainly plants (I do on occasion have a free-range organic egg, a small amount of cheese, and every few months a piece of fish) my husband is a meat eater (though he is open to meatless meals). In fact, I roast a chicken for his weekday sandwiches each weekend.

I promise you that I will not pass judgement if your lifestyle is different from mine. We all have our own belief system and do what we believe is best. My goal for my blog is to reach out to others who also want to eat clean, non-processed food and learn more about nutrition and health. I thank you for taking the time to read my posts, to share my recipes, and for sharing your insights and recipe reviews.

Another goal that blogging achieves is that it is challenging me to come up with new recipes and avoid the food rut that I easily fall into. A couple of weeks ago I felt a craving set in for one of my favorite foods from years ago.

If you are from the Marquette area, chances are that you have had the Chicken Avgolemono Soup at Vango’s Pizza and Cocktail Lounge. (If you are in the area I highly recommend this restaurant. It is one of the few original “mom and pop” restaurants left in the area.) I worked at Vango’s for over seven years and during that time I lived on that spectacular soup. Even as I type this I can perfectly picture a vegetarian gyro with a steaming bowl of Avgolemono. Okay, maybe a few waffle fries too 😉 So I decided to come up with a plant-based version that would help satisfy my longing for the Greek soup.

When I started to create this soup I remembered when my WW receptionist Gini told me that her daughter uses beans to thicken soup. Since I did not want to use egg for this recipe, I decided to puree white beans and add it to the soup and it worked like a charm. If you like lemon and dill, I think you will enjoy this bowl of healthy comfort food. In fact, I think I will have to make another batch this weekend.

Creamy Lemon & Dill Soup
CREAMY LEMON & DILL SOUP (Printable recipe below)

    • 4 cups of vegetable stockCreamy Lemon & Dill Soup
    • 3 ribs of chopped celery
    • 3 lemons ~juice and zest (I really like lemon and this did turn out lemony. You may want to reduce the amount of lemon based on your personal taste)
    • 3 carrots, peeled and sliced
    • 3 cups of cooked white beans
    • 1 small, chopped onion
    • 1 clove of minced garlic
    • 1/2 cup of fresh, chopped parsley
    • 1/2 cup of fresh, chopped dill
    • 1 Tablespoon of coconut oil (or your favorite cooking oil)
    • Salt and pepper to taste

Saute the celery, onion, garlic, and carrots in the coconut oil until soft. Add the vegetable stock and bring to a boil.

Put the beans in a blender with a cup or two of the vegetable stock from the pot. Blend until silky smooth. Add the white bean puree to the soup pot. Add the lemon zest and juice, the parsley, and dill. Simmer for 5-10 minutes.

*Makes 10 cups

Printable Recipe ~ Creamy Lemon & Dill Soup

Pin this post HERE.

One of the ways that I enjoy this soup is with a generous drizzle of hot sauce. One night I added chunks of oregano roasted potatoes to the soup and partnered it with a salad and it became a filling dinner.  Other additions could include pasta (orzo or whole wheat pasta) and if you eat meat you could add chicken (though I think you will find it delicious without).
Creamy Lemon & Dill Soup

I hope you enjoy this recipe. You may also be interested in the others found on my Soup tab. As always, if you try this recipe, I would love to know what you think. Please stop by my Facebook page, leave a comment on this page, or send me an email and let me know how you found my blog. I am always fascinated with social networking and how our connections allow our journeys to intersect.

Together we can bring back the importance of the kitchen into our daily lives and release our reliance on heavily processed food. We will find that it is not difficult to prepare wholesome, nutritious food and live up to our healthy potential. Thank you for your support and inspiration. I promise to keep sharing so we can thrive together!

Tackle Spring Fever with Avocado and White Bean Salad ~ and a Healthy Dose of Friendship

Avocado and White Bean Salad

Avocado is by far my favorite food. The taste and texture is luxurious and it is packed with healthy properties.

Avocado is by far my favorite food. The taste and texture is luxurious and it is packed with healthy properties.

 

“…the avocado is a food without rival among the fruits, the veritable fruit of paradise.” 
— David Fairchild

 

 

This post comes to you straight from snow day #9. Yes, that is correct. NINE snow days and I have a feeling that it will not be the last. This morning when we opened our family room drapes we were faced with a hulking drift of snow.

March Madness defined.

March Madness defined.

Our poor little house engulfed in snow banks

Our poor little house engulfed in snow banks

Though we live in town, our house is nearly obscured from the road. Mike had to fire up the snow blower so he could get to his classes at Northern Michigan University (they opened up campus at noon today). Strangely enough it is the first day back to classes after Spring Break. Obviously, Mother Nature did not get the memo.

As the Upper Peninsula digs out from an early St. Patrick’s Day 

Mike takes a break from snow plowing with his best friend, Phoebe. He just finished telling me that if I had a Subaru (like he does) instead of a Jeep that there would be no need for snow blowing our drive. ;)

Mike, with his best friend Phoebe,  takes a break from snow blowing. He just finished telling me that if I had a Subaru (like he does) instead of a Jeep that there would be no need for snow blowing our drive. 😉

storm, I took advantage of another day to decompress, grade, read, and write. I also made a comforting and filling pot of Black Bean and Sweet Potato Chili (recipe will be shared at the end of my post).

I am always thankful for time off to reflect and recommit to my healthy goals. This weekend Mike and I made time for each other on Saturday. We had a lunch date and after going grocery shopping decided to enjoy a walk in snowy Marquette and spontaneously stopped at a few local establishments.

Mike took this photo from the North Star Lounge at The Landmark Inn with the panoramic feature on his iPhone 5.

Mike took this photo from the North Star Lounge at The Landmark Inn with the panoramic feature on his iPhone 5.

Another cool photo of Marquette. In the distance you can see the historic ore dock. ~Photo by Mike Laitinen

Another cool photo of Marquette. In the distance you can see the historic ore dock.
~Photo by Mike Laitinen

While traipsing around we were thrilled when we ran into my friend Paula Diedrich and her husband Todd. Paula and I have been keeping each other accountable to blogging. We have been friends for over a decade and have traveled and worked on many projects together with the Upper Peninsula Writing Project. Paula exhibits endless energy as a dedicated mom, wife, writer, educator, student teacher mentor, leader of professional development workshops, and in 2013 launched her fantastic new blog, Hat of Many Colors.

You can tell by the smiles on both of our faces how much a night out with friends was appreciated. ~Photo by Todd Diedrich

You can tell by the smiles on both of our faces how much a night out with friends was appreciated. ~Photo by Todd Diedrich

I am thankful for Paula’s encouragement and I think that having a support network is so important in achieving goals. This holds true with my writing, teaching, and my Weight Watchers journey.

I have so many ideas for future blog posts and the key is to MAKE time to write. It is fulfilling to know that people are reading my posts and that I can share tips and recipes. Today’s post is a recipe that I tried for my WW group’s February Recipe Round-Up and comes from one of my favorite Vegan blogs, Healthy. Happy. Life. When I saw Kathy Patalsky’s recipe for Veggie-Loaded Avocado White Bean Salad on Toast I was in awe. Kathy’s photos are stunning and really brought the salad to life. The recipe was a keeper and I cannot wait to experiment with different variations. Kathy’s recipe kept in the refrigerator for quite a few days and made a fine lunch option and I had it for dinner with a cup of soup.

All the ingredients for this hearty and satisfying salad.

All the ingredients for this hearty and satisfying salad.

  • 1 16 oz. can drained and rinsed beans (Kathy’s recipe calls for cannellini but I only had garbanzo beans on hand. They worked well in the recipe. Next time I will use cannellini beans since they are softer.)100_0981
  • 1 avocado, diced
  • 1/3 cup onion, diced
  • 1 small carrot, chopped
  • 1/2 cup spinach, thinly sliced
  • 1 tsp apple cider vinegar (I used raw apple cider vinegar and added extra since I like my food very tangy)
  • 1 lemon, juiced (I used a few tablespoons of lime juice)
  • 1 Tbsp fresh tangerine or orange juice and a pinch of zest (I used orange)
  • 2 Tablespoon nutritional yeast
  • 1 Tablespoon hemp or sunflower seeds (I used hemp seeds)
  • pinch of cayenne pepper
  • salt and pepper to taste

Kathy’s recipe also calls for 2 tsp white miso paste. I did not have any on hand so I used a couple splashes of low sodium soy sauce.If you do not follow a plant based meal plan, you could sub out the nutritional yeast and/or hemp seeds for some plain fat free Greek yogurt.

The recipe rendered four ~ 1/2 cup servings. WW members can run through the Recipe Builder for Point Plus totals. While avocado may be a bit “pointy” I think that it is PP well spent since avocado contains so many healthy nutrients.

I used a fork to mash the beans.

I used a fork to mash the beans.

I added the avocado and mashed them in well.

I added the avocado and mashed them in well.

Chop up the onion and carrot.

Chop up the onion and carrot.

Fold in the onion and carrot to the bean and avocado mixture.

Fold in the onion and carrot to the bean and avocado mixture.

Add the Hemp Seed and Nutritional Yeast

Add the Hemp Seed and Nutritional Yeast

I love my Microplane for citrus zest.

I love my Microplane for citrus zest.

Add the zest, orange juice, and vinegar.

Add the zest, orange juice, and vinegar.

I use pink Himalayan salt.  We purchased this Himalayan salt lantern at the Rusted Buffalo in Asheville, North Carolina. It is said to have many air purification properties and I love the glow it imparts on the room.

I use pink Himalayan salt. We purchased this Himalayan salt lantern at the Rusted Buffalo in Asheville, North Carolina. It is said to have many air purification properties and I love the glow it imparts on the room.

I toasted up a piece of Ezekiel bread to serve the Avocado and White Bean salad on. This bread is amazing, filling, high in protein, and contains no added sugar.

I toasted up a piece of Ezekiel bread to serve the Avocado and White Bean salad on. This bread is amazing, filling, high in protein, and contains no added sugar.

This salad looks as good as it tastes.

This salad looks as good as it tastes.

I cannot wait to try this again. I think it would be delicious with fresh cilantro.

I cannot wait to try this again. I think it would be delicious with fresh cilantro.

Even when I am eating alone I love to make up a fancy plate. They say that we feast with our eyes first.

Even when I am eating alone I love to make up a fancy plate. They say that we feast with our eyes first.

Athena our kitty was napping the day that I snapped these photos. I guess Phoebe decided that she would be in the stand-in photo bomber. ;)

Athena our kitty was napping the day that I snapped these photos. I guess Phoebe decided that she would be in the stand-in photo bomber. 😉

I tried this recipe on February 22nd and I was already experiencing a major case of spring fever. I dusted off some rose colored Fiestaware from my collection and had daydreams of pink flowers: tulips, bleeding hearts, lilies, and peonies. Until May or June (or maybe July), I suppose these pretty dishes will have to do!

Pink Fiesta Tower

Pink Fiesta Tower

Pretty in Pink

Pretty in Pink

Spring Fever

Spring Fever

Today I made a large pot of the recipe I came up with for Black Bean and Sweet Potato Chili. It is one of my favorite “healthy comfort foods” and Mike loves it as well.

Black Bean and Sweet Potato Chili

Black Bean and Sweet Potato Chili

Sautee the following in 1 Tablespoon Coconut Oil (or oil of choice)

  •   1 cup chopped onion     
  •  2 cups chopped celery   
  • 2 Tbsp minced garlic     
  • 1 green bell pepper

Add the following:

  • 28 oz canned tomatoes (I used a small can of Rotel with green chilis and my mom’s garden tomatoes)
  • 4 cups vegetable broth
  • 3 cups diced sweet potato
  • 2 cups corn
  • 6 cups cooked black beans
  • chili power, salt, and pepper to taste
  • simmer for 45-60 minutesToday I also added whole wheat elbow macaroni to the chili to bulk it up.

I serve this chili with freshly chopped cilantro, a squirt of lime, and cubed avocado. You could also add a dollop of sour cream or Plain FF Greek yogurt, and/or cheese.This recipe produces 15 one cup servings.

I wish I could end my post by saying that spring is right around the corner. Unfortunately, that may not be the case for the U.P. of Michigan. Though we know that eventually the warm weather will find us. Until then we must find ways to keep hope in our hearts. Nourish yourself with healthy food and make an eye-catching presentation with a pretty dishes and/or place setting. Stop, savor, and enjoy every bite. For even more enjoyment, share your feast with a friend. I am so happy that Mike and I ran into Paula and Todd this weekend. As Paula said,  it was “a chance meeting with so many good things as a result.” We are thankful for our network of support and the blessings that are bestowed on us. We will have to make time to get together soon!

March Madness Challenge ~ Making Weight Management Fun & Functional

“People always call it luck when you’ve acted more sensibly than they have. ”
― Anne Tyler

Is there anything lovelier than fresh greens?

Is there anything lovelier than fresh greens?

Welcome March. I am not Irish, but I do love the color green. Green smoothies, recycling and re-purposing furniture, avocados, fresh produce, dark green bars on my Active Link, and the luxuriant smell of spring buds tingling with life.

Phoebe eagerly awaits the return of spring.

Phoebe eagerly awaits the return of spring.

It has been a long winter in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan and I am thankful that the deep blues of February have passed. Even our dog Phoebe has felt a melancholy lingering as she misses our long family walks together. Icicles make impressive glittering works of art in our neighborhood and I am hard pressed to remember a winter when our snowbanks loomed quite so large. Though there is something about the herald of March that makes one feel that we are turning a corner and ushering in spring.

Icicle art on our house.

Icicle art on our house.

This Saturday, after I returned from the Marquette Food Co-op, I asked Mike to snap a few pictures. Earlier that day I had marveled over the gorgeous selection of greens. Once in

My favorite kind of fresh cut bouquet: Green Chard, Dandelion Greens, and Kale.

My favorite kind of fresh cut bouquet: Green Chard, Dandelion Greens, and Kale.

In my hands they felt like a lovely, verdant bouquet of potential energy. Mike often muses that he is a lucky guy because I am the only woman he has met that does not demand fresh cut flowers for a gift. In the budding stages of our relationship I told him that I did not think a gift that dies in a few days is a profound symbol of lasting love. He laughed when I told him that I did not want flowers unless I could plant them in a garden and enjoy  their perennial blooms. Over the years we have planted lilacs, roses, bleeding hearts, star gazer lilies, and other offerings to nature together that we enjoy watching flourish each summer. Last June for my birthday I received a gorgeous red rose bush from my Saturday Weight Watchers friends for my birthday. I am so excited to watch it come to life and blossom this summer. Summer somehow seems sweeter after a long and bitter winter.

Mike and I found two four leaf clovers when hiking the Heritage Trail in Negaunee in June of 2009. I seek out this image often for inspiration.

Mike and I found two four leaf clovers when hiking the Heritage Trail in Negaunee in June of 2009. I seek out this image often for inspiration.

However, an unforgiving winter can make weight management seem very daunting and I am sure that many of us wish that we had the luck of the Irish to keep ourselves centered and on track. Though, we all know that weight loss has little to do with luck and much to do with hard work and reshaping, not only our muscles, but our lifestyle as well.

My Saturday Weight Watchers team often discusses how we can help make things manageable for our members and ourselves. We strongly feel that the journey we share is reciprocal. Regardless of our age, where we are in our journey, or if we have to lose 5 pounds or 100, we can learn from each other.

Each week of our 12 Week Challenge participants get a sticker for each meeting they attend. Each sticker equals a ticket for the drawing at the end of the challenge.

Each week of our 12 Week Challenge participants get a sticker for each meeting they attend. Each sticker equals a ticket for the drawing at the end of the challenge.

Brenda, is a receptionist for our Saturday meeting and she invited our members to participate in a 12 Week Challenge. We each chose a realistic goal that we wanted to attain within this time period. At the end of the challenge we will hold a drawing for prizes. Participants have generously been bringing in prizes for the drawing. Our meeting team always recommends green prizes that are gently used or even re-gifted.


Wendy's fantastic donation to Brenda's 12 Week Challenge drawing.

Wendy’s fantastic donation to Brenda’s 12 Week Challenge drawing.

In addition, Brenda and I discussed that we would encourage our members to join us in monthly challenges. In January we initiated a highly successful Green Smoothie Challenge and in February a Recipe Round-Up Challenge in which we all tried one new recipe a week that I will be compiling into a cookbook.

For March, we decided to put our heads together and come up with something fun and vastly different than what we have done before. We knew it was important to come up with a fun and functional challenge. So we decided on a March Madness Challenge to encourage our members to spend each day of March focusing on a different aspect of their weight loss/management journey.

This Saturday, our WW friends were given a printout of a calendar for the month of March. Along with the calender was a handout of thirty-nine tasks that Brenda and I came up with to challenge, entertain, reward, and encourage healthy habits. At the end of each day participants are to record the number of the task on the calendar that they completed. On Saturday, March 30th, those who have participated the challenge will bring in their calendar and their name will be put into a drawing to receive a Spring Salad Themed Basket that our Saturday team has created.

The second day into our March Madness Challenge there has already been a flurry of posts and photos on our facebook group page. I can tell already that our meeting will be full of fresh new ideas that we all can adopt to fit into our healthy lifestyle.

The Marquette Weight Watchers Saturday Team. Gini, Amy, and Brenda. We are so excited about the March Madness Challenge!

The Marquette Weight Watchers Saturday Team. Gini, Amy, and Brenda. We are so excited about the March Madness Challenge!

Thank you to Brenda for printing out sheets for all our participants.

Thank you to Brenda for printing out sheets for all our participants.

Here are the thirty-nine tasks that we unveiled to our members on Saturday. We believe that we came up with a challenge that will keep us all motivated, connected, and even inspire silliness and laughter.

March Madness Challenge

  1. Find a quote or mantra to display in an important place. The refrigerator, the bathroom mirror, your phone wallpaper, or on your desk at work.
  2. Have breakfast for dinner.
  3. Set your timer for 7 minutes (or longer) and dance. (If possible play music that was popular when you were in high school)
  4. Have popcorn for a snack and give it a zesty kick by adding one or more of the following: cinnamon, chili powder, cumin, cayenne, garlic powder, oregano, or a grating of parmesan cheese.
  5. Buy yourself a health or fitness magazine or read a few health/fitness articles on-line.
  6. Buy yourself something special: an article of clothing, a bouquet of flowers, a bottle of nail polish, lipstick, lip gloss, a book, jewelry, or perfume.
  7. Take five minutes and assess your strengths and weaknesses as a WW member. Write down one strength and one weakness and how you are going to build on the strength and improve on the weakness over the next few days.
  8. Write a thank you note to someone in your WW group that has inspired you or shared a tip that you found helpful.
  9. Think about where you want to be in your WW by June. Create a vision board with magazine clippings that represent this goal (a summer activity, the clothing that you want to wear, a special vacation you’re planning) Hang this vision board somewhere you will see it every day http://www.oprah.com/spirit/How-to-Make-a-Vision-Board-Find-Your-Life-Ambition-Martha-Beck
  10. Purchase a health or fitness related item: a new workout video, workout outfit, shoes, cookbook, food scale, measuring cups, etc.
  11. Pack daily snacks for the next week.
  12. Buy something silly to keep you accountable to healthy eating or exercise: stickers for your WW tracker or calendar, a weight loss buddy mascot, a fun plate/glass/straws (look in the children’s section for something brightly colored and whimsical), a fun piece of jewelry to use as an anchor.
  13. Turn off the television and computer, light a candle, and enjoy a hobby (read, knit, draw, listen to classical music, or just meditate).
  14. Commit to one Random Act of Kindness: buy a stranger a cup of coffee, pay for someone’s check at a restaurant, leave a large tip, fill out an employee comment card when you get exceptional service at a store, write a thank you note/card to a co-worker, make a food/clothing/cash donation to a charity, make a homemade gift for a friend, or bring in a healthy snack to work to share with a co-worker/work team.
  15. When out shopping or running errands park a few blocks away or take a few extra laps around the store.
  16. Get your healthy oils in with your breakfast.
  17. Write down your top excuse for your #1 WW struggle (exercise, cooking, tracking). Take the piece of paper and burn it, tear it up, or cut it into shreds.
  18. Choose a goal outfit and hang in plain view. (ex: a pair of pants, dress etc. that you would like to fit back into or a swimsuit).
  19. During a television program(s) commit to exercising during commercials (ab crunches, push-ups, lunges, arm weights, walking up and down stairs).
  20. Go without refined sugar for an entire day.
  21. When you feel the desire to mindless munch or snack, grab a piece of gum, have a glass of water, cup of tea, or coffee instead.
  22. Spend 15 minutes working on a project in the house that you have been avoiding (set a timer).
  23. Make sure that every snack you have includes protein.
  24. Compute how much weight you have lost on WW. Weigh corresponding household items that register the same amount. Lift up the items to get a sense of how much weight you have lost. Carry the items around in a backpack or bag for a minute or longer (if you can). Make a mental note or even snap a photo to remind you of how far you’ve come when you are struggling.
  25. Make a list of 5-10 lifestyle changes you have made since starting WW.
  26. Try a Green Smoothie or if you already make them, try a new combination.
  27. Try a new food or recipe that you haven’t made before and give a review on it.
  28. Have a Junk Food Free day.
  29. Drink a glass of water upon waking in the morning for 7 days straight, do you feel more hydrated?
  30. Get 7 or more hours of sleep, being over-tired can be a trigger for snacking and over eating.
  31. Go to bed 30 minutes earlier.
  32. If you Bite It, Write It, Track for 7 days straight and try and meet all of the GHG.
  33. Meal Plan for a week, check your pantry, make your grocery list and shop for what you need.
  34. Put a spare pair of socks and sneakers in your vehicle; you never know when there may be an opportunity to fit in a walk.
  35. Try a new whole grain like Quinoa.  It’s packed with nutrients, fiber and some protein, making it a more filling food.
  36. Write down 3 things you’re grateful for or start a Gratitude Journal.
  37. Try a new work out video or exercise. Check out free workout videos on YouTube or at your local library.
  38. Wait 15 minutes to eat something you think you want to eat.  If you are still thinking about it 15 minutes later, you  really want it; otherwise, it was a passing urge.
  39. Enjoy a piece of fruit with your breakfast today.
  40. Add your own healthy ideas:
    My March Madness Challenge #10: Fun & funky paring knives and an electric green cutting board. I can't wait to use them to cut up fruit and vegetables for snacks, salads, and smoothies!

    My March Madness Challenge #10: Fun & funky paring knives and an electric green cutting board. I can’t wait to use them to cut up fruit and vegetables for snacks, salads, and smoothies!

    I am so lucky to have an amazing support network for the healthy goals that I am chasing down. My Saturday WW meeting is full of inspirational individuals who eagerly take on challenges and accomplish remarkable milestones in the process. We all benefit from hearing a wide range of voices and different ideas, tips, and tricks. I love starting my weekend out with our meeting and it keeps me fueled for the entire week. We are welcoming March with gladness and full and open hearts. Join us for the March Madness Challenge! Best wishes for a strong, active, excuse-free, Power Food filled, and On Program month.

                                                                                                                                      1. l