Have a great weekend all! I slept in on this glorious Saturday morning and then made everyone a sweet and salty breakfast combo, muskmelon and bacon. It is cold and dreary here in Ohio so maybe it is a movie day? A laundry day most likely. I hope the weather warms up a bit tomorrow. We want to break in our annual passes to our local zoo.
Today is the last day to buy the new Herb Fairies series/set. I have now read the first book in the series and OH MY GOODNESS it is great. My 7 year old son and 9 year old daughter will be over the moon for it I think. The main characters are some really empowered children who grew up with herbalist parents. Yet there are also some child characters who not have quite their comfort level with the great outdoors so it is a fun mix. This set goes away tonight at midnight and won’t be available again until 2014 so don’t delay.
I wrote two articles elsewhere this week and wanted to share them…
I am a member of the Green Sisterhood. which is a group of amazing green women bloggers and business owners who have banded together to work towards our goals, both environmental and personal. They say everyone needs to find their tribe and the Green Sisterhood is an amazing tribe. I knew most of the women involved previously but getting together in this more intimate group has been so rewarding. I cannot wait to see what we can accomplish together. You can follow the blog for more great, green and conscious content as well. This week I wrote a post there about Unplugging the Family for Screen-Free Week, which is coming up at the end of April. It is a week when we are encouraged to unplug the TVs and computers and reconnect to real life, family, and nature. Will you join?
I also wrote over at Fit Frugal Fabulous about an issue that keeps many up at night…health insurance woes. If you cannot afford health insurance or you have a less than desirable plan there ARE still ways you can take charge of your healthcare. Traditional health care is really sick care and we CAN take steps to make sure we don’t need sick care. THAT is real health care! Read A ‘Do It Yourself’ Healthcare Plan When You Can’t Afford Health Insurance.
Other worthwhile links…
Good Girl Gone Green’s amazing Almond Pulp Bars - a delicious way to use up almond pulp leftover from making almond milk.
Litterati – This is an AMAZING site and idea. Basically when you are out and about, picking up library books or taking your kids to the park and you see a piece of litter, you take a photo with your camera and upload it to Instgram (follow me here) and tag it #Litterati. Then you recycle or throw away the litter. It creates a platform for people to unite and clean up the earth one piece of garbage at a time and the site tracks everyone’s efforts via a global map. The kids are actually loving this process and finding it game-like. Here is a piece we tagged this week, found along a roadway as we were walking.. Who throws an empty bottle of laundry detergent out of their car?!?
Books I am Reading:
Attack Your Day!: Before It Attacks You - FREE right now. It is an excellent book about being more productive.
You Can Buy Happiness (and It’s Cheap): How One Woman Radically Simplified Her Life and How You Can Too - A great read about a couple who live in one of those tiny houses and have very little by way of belongings.
Soap Maker’s Workshop: The Art and Craft of Natural Homemade Soap - Yep, I really, really want to try my hand at making my own soap. I have wanted to for years. One of these days….
This isn’t my thing since I converted from vegetarian to paleo over a year ago now, but I used to read and LOVE this magazine in my veggie days. It always has lots of great recipes to keep things fresh and it also has great advice and tips on health and diet in general. I loved the frequency of conversion recipes that make old favorites vegetarian friendly.
If you read this magazine save some dough by using code 7707 which makes a one year subscription only $5.49 (55% 0ff). Enjoy!
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Another meal success with eMeals! I wrote about them a little over a week ago and how their service is helping me plan some yummy meals. This particular meal was on their special Paleo Valentine’s menu that was a bonus perk of membership. They have a regular Valentine’s menu too but since I am on the paleo menu plan I got the paleo one. I thought that was very nice bonus.
My husband will be working on Valentine’s Day most likely so we went ahead and made one of the meals today for a cozy lunch for the two of us. We made bacon wrapped shrimp on skewers, drizzled with garlic oil. We had more shrimp than we had bacon so we sauteed the remaining shrimp in bacon grease and ate those too. Yum! I have never combined shrimp and bacon before and it was delicious. I can see making it again…often. ;)
And if eMeals makes it a habit of over delivering and providing these menus for special occasions I think I may actually do better about making “special meals” on those days.
eMeals is still offering 15% off for subscribers if you use the discount code newyear. You can use it for any of the meal plans so if you have been thinking about subscribing be sure to use the code. Enjoy!
I like the idea of meal planning…in theory. In practice I typically only plan out two to three meals in advance. I just don’t have the organization skills or patience to plan much beyond that. It’s not at all uncommon though for me to be perusing our freezer trying to figure out what I can cook the next day. So when I see menu planning services online I think they are a great idea but probably not for me. I have tried a few over the years but usually they don’t cater to the specific ways in which my family eats. Whole traditional foods, vegetarian at one time, and now paleo.
This month though I decided to give it one more shot in an attempt to be more organized. I was contacted by eMeals and given the chance to take their service for a test drive and so far, have been pleasantly surprised. What hooked me was the ability to choose a paleo dinner plan. Who knew?! I figured that at the very least I get a weekly menu plan that I can peruse and cherry pick. What has ended up happening though is that more often then not I like following the plan more strictly because I can then use their shopping list to make that part of the task go all that much faster.
It also forces me to cook new things, which I do struggle with. It is easier and often cheaper for me to make the same things quite often. The problem though is that my kids have started to get sick of certain foods. My daughter now claims that she hates anything with chicken in it. My oldest boy has started to dislike pork and beef roasts. My youngest boy doesn’t want to eat soup anymore. Okay, okay I need to start varying the menu, I get it. Trying new things is good for all of us and I get out of my comfort zone.
The meal at the top of this post is one I made this week, Asian Meatballs and Sriracha Slaw. The meatballs tasted like mini meatloaf balls but with an Asian twist of course and I thought the slaw was also surprisingly yummy. I only needed a few things to make this recipe and the others work because they call for ingredients that would be common among paleo households. Almond flour and coconut aminos, no problem! Though for those newer to the game it also has substitution suggestions for the more exotic ingredients if need be.
Anyway my oldest ate all of it and my two youngest ate the slaw all up but picked at the meatballs, mostly because it had “green stuff” in it (basil). This is okay though because making stuff I know they will eat doesn’t work out so well when they get sick to death of it. We will all adapt. My husband got the leftovers and he raved over them, asking me to make it again soon. The entire meal is actually something that would be quite easy for me (or him) to make for his work lunch/dinner.
To get started you pick your family size and your food style. There are many options including gluten free, gourmet, low carb, paleo, vegetarian, clean eating, etc. The base price includes dinner plans only but for just a few bucks more you can add lunches and/or breakfasts. You get your first menu plan immediately. Actually I had access to two, the current week and the previous. I find it to be very simple in design and easy to use. I can’t see myself sticking to it religiously over the course of the year but I do see myself using it during those weeks when I need to buckle down and be more organized and that may be frequent this year.
Right now eMeals is offering 15% off for subscribers if you use the discount code newyear. I think they are playing up their low calorie and budget meal plans because this is the time of year when many are worrying about their weight (and their pocketbook) but you can use it for any of the meal plans. If you have been thinking about subscribing be sure to use the discount code. Enjoy!
Several weeks back I shared a great ebook bundle that catered to the traditional, whole foods, real foods, natural parenting crowd. It was a great package and went over well so it is not surprising to see another ebook bundle pop up here recently. This one is a whole different lineup but equally awesome, with popular ebooks from 25 different authors/blogger, for a total of 33 different books.
It has a paleo, primal foods, traditional foods and lifestyle slant and I have had my eye on several of them. Well Fed, Lacto-Fermentation, Nourished Baby, Paleo CrockPot, The Wild Life, Freezer Cooking Guide for Grain Free Meals, Paleo Ice Cream, and many, many more. I just love that I can read all these on my tablet and take them with me everywhere I go. How many times have you been stuck in a line or waiting somewhere with nothing to read? Well, opening an ebook to educate yourself is a much better option than playing Angry Birds on your phone.
If you have had your eye on a few of these then it makes sense to buy this bundle to get ALL these great goodies and save yourself some money in the process. Enjoy!
Get the Toadally Primal Wellness Bundle