Tuesday, July 16, 2019

"Raising Men Not Boys" Book Club

Hey moms of boys...
This is for YOU!
I read this book a while back and it's one of the BEST parenting books I've read when it comes to raising sons.
It's faith-based, it's practical, it's thought provoking, & it's relevant. 
I've been wanting to do this for a while, but I finally decided to do an on online "book club" where we will meet virtually on Sunday nights to discuss it. We'll read 2 chapters each week and we'll have a private FB group where I'll post a Zoom link for each week's gathering. (So it's FREE other than buying the book!) Each week we will share our thoughts/questions/challenges etc. & we'll be praying for each other and our sons. Our final week, I'll gather questions ahead of time and we'll have some of my fave boy moms (of grown sons) on to share some insight & wisdom with us.
By the way...Today is Amazon PRIME day! If you have Amazon Prime, I want to encourage you to go order this book ASAP (whether you can join the book club or not). **I think you can use the code PRIMEBOOK19 to save $5 off a purchase of $15 or more on books. Great time to stock up on some books!
We are starting THIS Sunday (7/21), so if you do plan to join us you'll want to go ahead and order ASAP to get it in and be able to read the first two chapters! Moms of boys ANY age are invited to join us (one of the chapters is all about raising teenage sons), so feel free to pass this along or invite a boy mama.
Here's the link to buy Raising Men Not Boys.

Here's the link to request to join the FB group.

 I'm so EXCITED to do this with all of you!

Saturday, July 6, 2019

Baby Butler #4 is 26 Weeks

I can't believe I'm already 6.5 months! This is flying by and I know it'll be October before we know it. My official due date is October 11th, and we can't wait to welcome our sweet baby girl to the mix!

My Symptoms: I can feel that my SI joint is out of whack (probably because I always sit with my left foot under me), so I just bought a package to start seeing the chiropractor more regularly. They are certified in the Webster technique, which I recommend when seeing a chiro during pregnancy. (I personally go to help keep everything in line & totally trust our chiropractors.)

I randomly threw up this week for the first time this entire pregnancy. We met my mom for lunch, & I grabbed a garbage bag out of the back of the car on the way there because I just KNEW I was going to yack. (I was nauseous off and on until week 16ish but never threw up.) Sure enough while we were eating, I had to run to the bathroom and I puked my brains out. Once and done! Not sure what happened exactly? 

I get SUPER full to the point that it is very uncomfortable when I eat, so eating smaller meals more frequently and trying not to overdo it because I feel like my stomach with bust!

Still wearing a wrap (you can see it in some of my pics) to help support the umbolical hernia. Probably need to be wearing some compression stockings/socks to support these gorgeous varicose veins I'm rockin. 

Other than that, I really am feeling good and I'm very thankful! No swelling and I'm not miserable the way everyone acts like I should be during the summer. I am feeling more content with this being our last baby though. (Did you ever think you'd hear me say that?) I am just tired & Jonathan says it pretty much every day, so it'd have to be the Lord's plan and a heart change (especially for Jon) for us to have another.

Appointment: Everything looked great at my appointment. I met a new doctor and he was very nice and personable. EK had a strong heartbeat. I was only measuring 22 weeks when I laid back (even though I'm actually 24). Blood pressure was good. Next appointment is my glucose, so I'm looking into options for that besides the glucose drink. I try not to be "that girl" too often, but I'm just not comfortable with it after reading some of the ingredients. I'll prob do the jelly bean deal with some non-GMO jelly beans. 


Maternity Clothes: Yes! All the dresses. Wearing mostly workout clothes during the week. (I have maternity workout leggings from Target that are super comfy.)
Movement: Our girl is wild just like her brothers were! Sometimes it tickles or catches me off guard. Girlfriend is strong already! Love the sweet little reminders. (And trying to peel back on caffeine after learning from my DNA kit that I am a slow metabolizer of caffeine.)

Sleep: Meh. Sleeping okay. Toss and turn all the time. Older two boys wake me up sometimes. Get up to pee. 

Cravings: Watermelon & s'mores!
Supplements: Taking the BEST pre-natals I've found on the market, and they are custom made for me by IDLife. I'm taking a multi, probiotic, omega 3, D3, folate, iron, & magnesium. Still doing bone broth protein + an unflavored collagen in the mornings & taking a B complex since I found out I do in fact have the MTHFR gene mutation as well as FUT2.

Nutrition: Definitely need to step my veggie/smoothie/juicing game back up!
Work Outs: I have been feeling really strong during my workouts the past couple of weeks...once I get going that is (it takes me a minute), I took my first yoga class this pregnancy and LOVED it! I always forget how much I love yoga till I do it.

Best Pregnancy Moment This Week: Well it definitely WASN'T when the very overweight man at the gym asked me when my twins were due. Lol! Really, it's probably that I've reached the phase of pregnancy where I am CLEARLY very pregnant and everyone wants to talk to me about it. Most people say normal stuff, but sometimes I run into the people with limited communication skills who want to say something and just don't know WHAT to say...so they say something borderline rude/inappropriate. I enjoy meeting new people and a sweet new blessing is always a great conversation starter. I love seeing people's face when they ask if it's my first. Ummmmm, not quite. ;)

Really though, some highlights have been seeing some friends whom I ADORE & haven't seen in forever!!

LOVED seeing this sweet BFF!!! P.S. She started a podcast! Go check out "You're Not Alone!"

Celebrated this beauty at her shower for sweet Vada Jae! Isn't that the cutest name?? 

Loved having these awesome house guests all the way from Michigan!

Special trip to Montgomery to speak at a nutrition seminar with these friends!

Fun making memories on the lake with alllllll our boys!

Celebrated this sweet lady's baptism! She and I got our specialist's degrees together. Such an honor to be part of this special day with her.

Goals for next week: Drink more water! Obviously there is a trend this pregnancy. Thankful for Hydrate! It's pretty much the only thing keeping me from being dehydrated since I can't seem to make myself drink water. (We made a shift in our house to some products that are GMO free, soy free, gluten free, and have no artificial colors/sweeteners etc.)

Siblings Pregnancy Comparisons:
26 Weeks with Jase
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Week 24 with Kade
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Week 24-30 with Beau
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Saturday, June 8, 2019

Complaining

If you complain about something without offering a solution, then YOU are part of the problem.

Earlier this week, Jonathan took his pre-workout, we got all the boys ready & loaded in the car to head to the gym, then drove the 20+ minutes (past other gyms) to get there, unloaded all the boys and walked in. (We chose this gym specifically because it has childcare, & it saves us time to be able to work out together.) When we arrived, they had to turn us away because there weren’t enough staff members per child in the daycare. Basically the gym daycare was too full, so we couldn’t work out. This was the fifth or sixth time this has happened since school let out a few weeks ago, and I was pretty irritated by it. I wasn’t rude, but I also wasn’t kind and understanding by any means. (And I know it’s not the workers’ fault. They are just following protocol, which I do appreciate.) Here’s the deal. We’ve had an “eventful” couple of weeks to say the least, we haven’t been able to work out much, and I just REALLY needed the endorphins. (Clearly.)

I am not the type to complain (like, I never send my food back, always try to be the bigger person and offer grace), but I asked for the manager’s contact info and planned to call/email her because this cannot continue happening. I am pretty sure Jon and I both huffed and puffed our way to the car like children, loaded the boys back up, and headed home. I am sure it sounds silly (because it feels a little silly even typing it out, but I wanted to give context to where the post came from…it was ME!), but for us, this is our main hobby + stress relief. And honestly we probably wouldn’t have cared if it hadn’t happened so many times in such a short time frame. (We’ve never had the issue until recently because normally we go during the day while all other kids are in school.)

Right as I was about to type up an e-mail (since the manager is out of town), that quote popped in my head. DON’T you dare complain without offering a solution to the problem! And be GRATEFUL! Well, okay then…

So, Jon & I brainstormed a few ideas of how they could eliminate this from being an issue in the future & I have a draft typed up in my e-mail. And honestly. I’ll probably just wait till she gets back in town because this type of thing typically seems much nicer in person anyway. (For me, at least.)

But the whole deal got me thinking.

I had actually JUST shared an article in my healthy moms group about how chronic complaining impacts our bodies on the cellular level and leads to higher rates of anxiety, depression, and disease in an individual. It doesn’t surprise me this would be one of consequences when God’s Word clearly instructs us NOT to complain.

Do everything without grumbling or arguing. - Philippians 2:14

And do not grumble, as some of them did-and were killed by the destroying angel. - 1 Corinthians 10:10

Don’t grumble against one another, brothers and sisters, or you will be judged. The Judge is standing at the door! - James 5:9

Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen. - Ephesians 4:29

**Want to know the remedy if you have a tendency to complain?? GRATITUDE! And CHOOSING to focus on the good.

Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus. - 1 Thessalonians 5:18

Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable-if anything is excellent or praiseworthy- think about such things. - Philippians 4:8

Silly, insignificant situation with a BIG reminder!! I’m so grateful for how the Holy Spirit convicts us and prompts us even in the daily things of life.

I don’t ever want to be known as a complainer. I don’t want my children to see/hear me complain because I don’t want to set a sinful example for them to follow. I don’t want others to not want to be around me (because seriously, complainers are NOT enjoyable to be around). I want to be JOYFUL, GRATEFUL, and GRACIOUS. I’m praying the Lord removes the sentence “I’m not trying to complain, but…” from my vocabulary, because clearly whatever is coming next is a complaint. We tend to undermine complaining, but the bottom line is when God’s Word says DON’T, I want to take that seriously. Anyone else need that reminder as much as I obviously did??

Friday, June 7, 2019

Baby Butler #4 is 22 Weeks

Keepin it classy with a bathroom selfie at Kroger. This was 20 weeks and the bump has DEFINITELY grown since then!

My Symptoms: I don’t think I posted in my last post, but in addition to some of the other really fun stuff I have going on (like varicose veins), I also have diastasis recti (which is why I carry like a torpedo) & an umbilical hernia. Thankfully it’s not terrible, but I’m wearing a wrap to help. It’s not too tight to make it restrictive, but definitely makes it WAY more comfortable. She said many times it goes away on its own after the baby is born, and I think it will this time too. If not, I’ll have to eventually have it surgically repaired.

Also, if I get up too fast or roll over too quickly, I have what I think is round ligament pain that is excruciating to the point I can barely move for like 30 seconds. It goes away quickly though and then I’m totally back to normal.

I know that all sounds really awful, but actually I feel GREAT! I am so thankful to have turned a corner and be feeling back to normal!

I also had my big ultrasound and everything looked perfect. DEF a girl! (Which we knew from the blood test.) It took a while to see all four chambers of the heart, but we finally got a picture. Measuring right on & my BP/weight was good. I was asking about trying a diff route to test for gestational diabetes (so I don’t have to do “the drink”) & they didn’t seem too thrilled, but I’m going to keep trying.

Maternity Clothes: I’ve mostly been wearing regular clothes, but I finally busted out some maternity dresses week 20. They were cute & way more comfy. It’s probably officially time to make the switch. I need some maternity jean shorts for summer! Most of my pregnancies have been through the winter, so I have plenty of pants but not a lot in the shorts department.

Movement: For sure! Ultrasound tech said she’s a little wiggle worm. I feel like I can maybe feel her from the outside, but it might just be my imagination.

Sleep: Well, I WAS sleeping a little better. Then a few nights I woke up at 3:30 and couldn’t go back to sleep for a couple hours. Wahhhh!!

We also had Vacation Bible School this past week, & even though it’s one of my favorite weeks of the year, there ain’t no tired like VBS tired! I would LOVE to take some naps, but Jon has been gone during the day so that hasn’t been an option.

Cravings: I forgot to mention that I craved dairy for a few weeks during my first trimester. I’m not much of a dairy person AT all (besides ice cream, of course), so I figured my body was telling me something. That went away around week 13 or so, but up until then it was lots of organic string cheese, cottage cheese, Greek yogurt and Greek whipped yogurt (legit tastes like cream cheese). Now I’m craving all the fruit. Mostly watermelon & oranges.

Supplements: Made a change to my supplements and I’m SUPER excited about it. I can’t wait to share with all of you soon. Still taking a multi, probiotic, omega 3, D3, folate, iron, & magnesium. Still doing bone broth protein + an unflavored collagen in the mornings. **Side note: If you have never been tested for MTHFR gene mutation, I want you to reach out to me ASAP. If you’re part of the 40%+ of the population who has this gene mutation, you do not want to take synthetic B vitamins or folic acid…you need the methylated versions (& FOLATE instead). Even if you don’t have it, it’s probably a good idea not to take synthetic vitamins. I’ve just started learning all about this since February and that’s why I’m making changes this go-round. I have found the BEST prenatal on the market.

Nutrition: Making sure I get plenty of good fats (avocados, eggs, avocado oil,coconut oil, Ghee, etc.). SUPER important for baby’s brain development! Back to eating plenty of salads & trying to eat an array of veggies. Sweet tooth seems to have eased up (at least a little anyway). I ate like crap last week with VBS though, & I can totally tell. My energy is extra zapped.
We did get to enjoy a few date nights at some farm-to-table restaurants with some DELICIOUS food though! Avocados, YellowFin, & Last Resort for the win!
Work Outs: We didn’t get to work out as much as I would have liked the past week and a half, but still trying to stay active. I definitely feel WAY better when I work out! My back doesn’t hurt as bad, I sleep better, and all the endorphins make me much more pleasant. Ha!

Best Pregnancy Moment This Week: This is probably way TMI, but whatever. It’s my blog! bwahaha! So, I will just say that Jonathan & I pretty much can’t keep our hands off each other, and if I wasn’t already pregnant…well, I’d definitely be now. **Sorry if you’re reading this mom.

Goals for next week: Drink more water! I’m on the struggle bus with water & can’t get my act together.

Siblings Pregnancy Comparisons:
22 Weeks with Jase
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22 Weeks with Kade
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22 Weeks with Beau
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Friday, May 10, 2019

Baby Butler #4 is 18 Weeks!!

Baby Growth:

Our sweet girl is the size of a sweet potato or a bell pepper! Although my belly looks more the baby is the size of a basketball!

18-bell-pepper[1]

My Symptoms: I’ve got some fun stuff going on this time. I was nauseas off and on ALL DAY LONG for the first 15 1/2- 16 weeks. I JUST started feeling better in the last week or so. I’m so grateful to be feeling better! I was worried when the nausea didn’t go away right at the end of the first trimester that I was going to be sick the whole time. This was definitely the most sick/nauseas/moody I’ve been yet…& I KNEW it was a girl because of how different I felt. I’ve also had a little heartburn off & on. I have a few varicose veins that are pretty intense too and will probably require  some type of treatment when I’m done having babies. I also have an umbilical hernia. It’s not very big and is just slightly uncomfortable. They told me wearing a support band will help and that it may just go away on its own after the baby is born. I’ve also read it becomes less uncomfortable as the belly grows (although you wouldn’t think that). I’ve been warned that if I have any severe pain to get to the hospital ASAP, so there’s that. My upper arms are breaking out (I know that’s so random and gross- it was my back with Jase and my neck with Beau).

Weight/Belly: I’d guess probably 10-11 lbs. My belly is HUGE though! I feel like I look like I’m 6-7 months and I’m only 4 1/2. My belly is definitely the biggest it’s ever been at this stage in pregnancy. (Yes, I’m sure there is only one in there.) I’m wondering if it’s because I never fully recovered from diastasis recti after Beau. (I jumped back into too intense of exercise too quickly & did ab exercises I had no business doing post-partum.)

Gender/Name: It’s a GIRL! Before Jase was born, I had the name Emmy Kate picked out before I even decided on a boy name name. Jonathan is on board, so now we are just trying to decide whether to spell it Emmy or Emmie (leaning towards the “y” to continue with my 4 letter names). We do plan on calling her by both names.

Maternity Clothes: Not wearing them yet, but I totally should be. I wear mostly flowy shirts though & have had to leave my pants unbuttoned a few times. I am wearing a support band to help support my umbilical hernia.

Movement: I don’t know if I’m crazy, but I am almost positive I felt the first movement at 11/12 weeks. I can periodically feel movements now but nothing super consistent.

Sleep: I think I took a nap every single day I could swing it from week 8 till last week. I FINALLY have more energy! And by more, I don’t mean a lot, but at least better than it was. I told Jon I thought I might have chronic fatigue or something! (Maybe being a little dramatic, but i could barely function without a nap for like 10 weeks straight.) I haven’t been sleeping great at night because I can’t sleep on my bely anymore and I wake up every single time I roll over/flip side to side (which seems like a million times a night.) I finally busted out the pregnancy pillow last night and it helped a TON! Up until a few weeks ago, I was going to sleep about 9:30 every night after I laid the boys down.

Cravings: All things pickled! Especially pickled okra. And tomatoes.

Supplements: probiotics, fiber, omegas, multivitamin, Catalyst (amino acids), collagen, bone broth protein, 1 Spark/day, Rehydrate

Nutrition: I typically eat eggs + avocados + ketchup or salsa & a piece of Ezekiel toast with ghee for breakfast. Now that I’m feeling better, I try to do something green every day (either a salad, a smoothie, or juice). Definitely been eating WAY too many sweets….I eat something sweet every single day and have been baking a LOT. I randomly craved dairy for the first 12 weeks or so and was thankful when that went away. Trying to eat plenty of nuts & veggies. Loving fruit.

Work Outs: I typically work out 3-5 times a week with Jonathan. Mostly full body strength training with a body pump class mixed in once a week or so. I have ran two 5Ks but that’s about the extent of my cardio besides the 10 min warm-up I do on the elliptical. I hurt my right knee a few weeks ago and couldn’t squat at all, but thankfully the swelling and pain both finally went away (after like 2 weeks) and I can squat (just doing body weight) pain free. I’m pretty sure I hurt it because my glutes are SO tight. I’ve started foam rolling and that’s helped tremendously. I feel SO much better when I work out! I never really feel like going, & I’m not really going super hard when I get there, but I definitely have more energy, am in a better mood, and sleep (at least a little) better on days I work out.

Best Pregnancy Moment This Week: Celebrating Jase’s 6th birthday!! And hearing Jonathan talk about his “baby girl.” He is so excited & it is melting my heart already!

Goals for next week: Drink more water. (I have NOT been doing a great job with hydration this pregnancy.) Eat mostly at home. (We ate out a LOT the first trimester, so now that I’m feeling better I’ve been cooking way more.) Do some stretching & look into Buteyko breathing & meeting with a doc about implementing some iodine into my regimen.

Siblings Pregnancy Comparisons:

18 Weeks With Jase
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Weeks 18-20 With Kade
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18 Weeks With Beau

Tuesday, May 7, 2019

Butler Party of 6!!

We are so excited to to be welcoming a sweet baby GIRL to our family this October!! We are so grateful to the Lord for this good & perfect gift from above.


{Not our best pic ever, but ya take what you can get when you’re dealing with a bunch of dudes who don’t like pictures.}

After lots of praying and seeking the Lord for his perfect timing to add to our family, we started trying for baby #4 around August maybe? (I think it was then.) I took a positive pregnancy test in November, and although I was excited, I just had a *feeling.* I started bleeding (like a normal period) a few days after the positive test & I knew the pregnancy wasn’t going to be viable. I made an appointment with our midwife just to make sure, and turns out I was having what they refer to as a “chemical pregnancy.” The Lord gave me such a peace about it and I feel as if he prepared my heart by giving me that “feeling” ahead of time, almost like I knew it was coming. I don’t know if that sounds weird, but I just knew something wasn’t right and I asked Jonathan to help me pray for the Lord’s will. I told God I trusted Him fully & He was so good to deliver such peace during that. Our midwife suggested we wait for another cycle to begin trying again, so we let December pass and started trying in January before Jonathan went on his mission trip to Nepal.

I took a positive test at the beginning of February & I went for a checkup at 6 weeks. We did an ultrasound just to be on the safe side and heard a sweet little heartbeat & saw a little peanut. (I try to avoid having too many ultrasounds, but wanted to make sure everything was good.) We started telling people right away after that.

A friend at the gym told me about this Sneak Peak test that is supposed to be 99.6% accurate (they refund your money after the baby is born if it’s wrong), so I ordered that around 9 weeks. The test it also warns you that being around male DNA can alter the results and make it inaccurate, so there is that. And…Ummmm, well I’m slightly outnumbered here so I just went to an area of my house where none of them ever go (& they were all playing outside) and hoped for the best. Mailed it off, came back a few days later and said BOY!

I thought from the get go this one was a girl, so I wasn’t fully convinced, but was still excited. If you can’t tell, I LOVE being a boy mom!! Like, legit LOVE it!! I would be totally fine with another boy, but I could tell Jon and my dad were both a little disappointed even though they tried not to show it. We told our immediate fam the results, but I had also done the bloodwork at the doctor’s office & knew the results would be coming in soon to verify. The next day, my midwife called. I missed her call & she texted me & left me a voicemail to call her back ASAP, so my heart stopped for a min & I was worried something was wrong. When I called her back, she told me everything was fine and that we were actually having a GIRL!! I seriously couldn’t believe it!
Image result for its a girl
My mom was at my house when I got the call & she thought I was joking! Ha! I told the boys & we Facetimed everyone else to tell them it was a girl. Everyone was SO excited!! I think Jonathan and my dad are the most pumped out of everyone! (For the record, we weren’t “trying for a girl” and I would have been equally excited about a boy. ANY baby is a GIFT from the Lord and so exciting! And maybe I’m biased, but I think boys are SO MUCH FUN & just INCREDIBLE! Okay, just had to put that out there. Moving right along.) So Jonathan keeps saying this is our last baby, and if that's really the case, I’m very very grateful the Lord chose to bless us with a girl this time. I really want him to experience the sweet father/daughter bond & for the boys to have a sister. (Also for the record, I’d still like more babies. I’d love for her to be able to have a sister because that is another really special bond! I totally trust Jonathan’s wisdom and discernment though, so I’m praying the Lord changes one of our hearts and aligns our desires in family size with his will.)
Jonathan keeps saying things like “My whole world is about to change!” It is seriously SO cute how excited he is to be a girl dad! All of his buddies keep telling him, “just wait man!”

It’s definitely been an interesting pregnancy so far. I was nauseas off and on all day for about the first 15-16 weeks. No throwing up, but felt like I’d probably feel better if I could. Felt like I was eating all day long. Belly popped out SUPER fast! Broke out on the top parts of my arms (random? I broke out on my neck when I was pregnant with Beau). Have some fun varicose veins, an umbilical hernia, & have had heartburn. Been MAJORLY craving sweets and have experienced a level of exhaustion I didn’t know was possible. (I told Jonathan more than once I thought I might have chronic fatigue & took a 2 hour nap every afternoon I got a chance). I’ll be 18 weeks on Friday. Gained about 8-9 lbs so far, although it feels like more and my belly looks more like I’m 7 months. I sound like a total bundle of joy, right? Ha! It has felt VERY different this time, & I only remember feeling totally AMAZING with the boys…but when I re-read my old blog posts, I had some of the same stuff early on with them. (I think God allows us to forget the hard stuff so we’ll have more?)

I’m very thankful to be turning finally a corner though. I’m still pretty tired, but I’m guessing that’s just cuz I’m chasing around 3 others. Working out def helps with my energy & helps me sleep better, but I’m just doing light/easy workouts because I don’t have a ton of energy.
Lots of people have asked, and we DO have a name! Same name I’ve had since before Jase…just haven’t decided how we want to spell it. This sweet girl will either be Emmie Kate or Emmy Kate. (Which do you like better?)

My official due date is October 11th.  I already feel more “pressure” to step my game up.  With the boys, I have a huge part in raising/training/shaping them, but ultimately Jonathan is their example of what a strong man/honorable husband/father/follower of Christ looks like. With this sweet girl, I AM HER EXAMPLE…so I want to be more quiet & gentle, more patient and kind, more ladylike, watch my tone/less sarcastic, etc. I know we are (hopefully) always growing, but I really feel like I need to let the Lord do some pruning before she arrives.

Grateful for our growing family and this precious baby girl. Thank you to everyone for all the love, the congrats, the well wishes, and the encouragement. That has meant so very much to me! I cannot WAIT to see her sweet face in October!!

Thursday, February 7, 2019

My Fave Smoothie Recipe

Image may contain: 1 person, smiling, food

We started drinking smoothies again every day during the Daniel Fast, and we forgot how much we LOVE it! I highly encourage everyone to drink at least one green drink a day….whether it’s a smoothie, you’re juicing, or it’s a greens powder.

This is my current fave recipe:

-Start with leafy greens. Be sure to mix it up & don’t use the same types of greens every day. I use kale, spinach, arugula (very strong taste), bok choy, swiss chard, etc. I typically but Super Greens mix,Power Greens Mix, or Protein Greens mix so I can change it up. I fill the container 3/4 of the way full of greens (shred it so it takes up less room).

- LiveFit Superfood Powder contains things like broccoli, tomatoes, beets, hemp/chia, & some other things I typically wouldn’t put in my smoothies in their whole food form, but you can’t even taste it. I also like that is has some protein. I usually do 3-4 scoops. I found it at Costco originally, but I’ve heard some people say they found it at Wal-Mart.

-Collagen. SO MANY BENEFITS! Gut health, skin elasticity, supports healthy joints. Give me alllll the collagen! Sometimes I drink it plain or mixed with my AdvoGreens/Reds powder, but sometimes I’ll drop it in my smoothie.

- Spices: Turmeric (read benefits of turmeric here), Ginger (read some of the benefits of ginger here), & Cinnamon! (all powerul, preferably all organic)

-Choose your frozen berries. Sometimes I do wild blueberries (pwerful for brain health), sometimes strawberries, and sometimes these acai packs. Blackberries/raspberries are great too…they are just “seedy.” I try to mix it up, but only do less than a cupped handful of whatever I choose. They are all organic and I found them at Costco & Kroger. **side note: you may want to add 1/3 of a banana if you’re new to smoothies and the greens are a little much for you.

-Choose your healthy fat. I always pick between 1/3 or 1/2 of an avocado (typically what I choose), liquid organic coconut oil, or almond butter (where the only ingredient is almonds). Be mindful of serving size with healthy fats, but don’t skip them. Your brain is made up of over 80% fat, so it needs them!

-Dulse flakes. (Check out all the benefits here!) SUPER beneficial!

- Depending on your goal, you can use unsweetened almond milk, coconut milk, or water. (I always opt for water so I don’t overdo it on the calories, but my hubby will add almond milk & chocolate Muscle Gain if he’s on the gain train.)

- I don’t blend until it’s totally smooth. It has just enough texture that I can somewhat “chew” it, which actually releases digestive enzymes to help you better absorb the nutrients.

Jonathan makes smoothies almost daily too. His taste WAY better than mine, but they also have way more calories (which is fine for him). I’ve acquired a taste to mine & actually crave them. They are SO nutritious!

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Hope you ENJOY!!