Jeanette's Healthy Living http://jeanetteshealthyliving.com Where delicious and healthy come together Wed, 26 Apr 2017 09:00:17 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.7.4 http://jeanetteshealthyliving.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/09/cropped-cropped-logo-32x32.jpg Jeanette's Healthy Living http://jeanetteshealthyliving.com 32 32 Vitamin C Boosting Tropical Green Smoothie Recipe http://jeanetteshealthyliving.com/vitamin-c-boosting-tropical-green-smoothie/ http://jeanetteshealthyliving.com/vitamin-c-boosting-tropical-green-smoothie/#comments Wed, 26 Apr 2017 09:00:17 +0000 http://jeanetteshealthyliving.com/?p=31109 This Vitamin C Boosting Tropical Green Smoothie is nutritious, low in calories and a healthy way to start the day. I’ve been eating lighter meals the last couple of weeks in preparation for a few upcoming trips where I know I’ll be indulging a bit. Eating local cuisine is one of the activities I look forward to...

Read More »

The post Vitamin C Boosting Tropical Green Smoothie Recipe appeared first on Jeanette's Healthy Living.

]]>
Vitamin C Boosting Green Smoothie - this nutritious, easy green smoothie is low in calories and a healthy way to start the day

This Vitamin C Boosting Tropical Green Smoothie is nutritious, low in calories and a healthy way to start the day. I’ve been eating lighter meals the last couple of weeks in preparation for a few upcoming trips where I know I’ll be indulging a bit. Eating local cuisine is one of the activities I look forward to most when traveling, so ideally, I’d like to lose a few pounds before I take off. Smoothies are easy to make and nutrient dense, so I’ve been enjoying them for breakfast lately.
Vitamin C Boosting Green Smoothie - this nutritious, easy green smoothie is low in calories and a healthy way to start the day

As a mom of four boys, I rarely travelled when my kids were growing up. In fact, I haven’t gone anywhere for more than a couple of days in almost 20 years. So, it was quite a surprise when the opportunity came up for me to travel overseas twice over the next five weeks with my three older boys.

Vitamin C Boosting Green Smoothie - this nutritious, easy green smoothie is low in calories and a healthy way to start the day

This week, I’m headed to Costa Rica with my eldest son. It’s the first time I’ve taken a trip with just him in 20 years! The last time was right after the twins were born, when I thought he could use a little one-on-one time with me. I’ve never been to Costa Rica, but I understand it is beautiful and full of fun outdoor activities. We’re going to be doing a few things completely outside of my comfort zone, like scuba diving and ziplining for the first time. I’m chalking it up to a growth opportunity. We’ll also be hiking through the rainforest by Arenal volcano and by La Fortuna waterfall. It’s going to be an action packed week, and I’m really looking forward to spending some quality time with my son.

Vitamin C Boosting Green Smoothie - this nutritious, easy green smoothie is low in calories and a healthy way to start the day

Then, next month, I’ll be traveling to Taiwan and Hong Kong with the twins for the first time. Two firsts will highlight this trip. First, I’ve never traveled anywhere with just the twins (hard to believe!). And, I have never been to China or Taiwan, so I am extremely excited about this trip, especially trying all the street food in the various night markets. My sister is coming too, which is super exciting, because I haven’t gone anywhere with her in over 30 years!

Vitamin C Boosting Green Smoothie - this nutritious, easy green smoothie is low in calories and a healthy way to start the day

Needless to say, I am over the moon about going on both of these trips, and feel immensely blessed that I am healthy enough to travel and enjoy some quality time with each of my boys and my sister on these upcoming trips. There will be a lot of eating going on, so this Vitamin C Boosting Tropical Green Smoothie is going to be key to keeping me healthy and help me lose a few pounds so I can enjoy myself on vacation.

If you’re new to green smoothies, you might also like my Beginner Green Tea Green Smoothie. Try it in shot glasses for a fun way to enjoy green smoothies.

Vitamin C Boosting Tropical Green Smoothie

  • 1 cup dark baby greens (spinach, kale)
  • 1/2 cup pineapple chunks
  • 1/2 cup mango chunks
  • 1 kiwi
  • 1 tablespoon chia seeds (reserve some for garnish if desired)
  • 2 tablespoons rolled oats (optional)
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/2 cup ice
  • 1 teaspoon coconut flakes
  1. Place all ingredients except coconut flakes in a high speed blender and blend until smooth. Garnish with coconut flakes and reserved chia seeds, if desired.

The post Vitamin C Boosting Tropical Green Smoothie Recipe appeared first on Jeanette's Healthy Living.

]]>
http://jeanetteshealthyliving.com/vitamin-c-boosting-tropical-green-smoothie/feed/ 1
Turkey Taco Bean Enchiladas Recipe http://jeanetteshealthyliving.com/turkey-taco-bean-enchiladas/ http://jeanetteshealthyliving.com/turkey-taco-bean-enchiladas/#comments Mon, 24 Apr 2017 09:00:21 +0000 http://jeanetteshealthyliving.com/?p=30953 Turkey Taco Bean Enchiladas are easy to make, kid-friendly, and freezer-friendly for busy weeknights. My youngest son loves Mexican food. In fact, I think he could survive on tacos, nachos, burrito bowls and enchiladas all week long. I’m going to Costa Rica with my oldest son this week, and it will be the first time...

Read More »

The post Turkey Taco Bean Enchiladas Recipe appeared first on Jeanette's Healthy Living.

]]>
Turkey Taco Bean Enchiladas - freeze ahead of time and bake when ready to eat

Turkey Taco Bean Enchiladas are easy to make, kid-friendly, and freezer-friendly for busy weeknights. My youngest son loves Mexican food. In fact, I think he could survive on tacos, nachos, burrito bowls and enchiladas all week long. I’m going to Costa Rica with my oldest son this week, and it will be the first time I’ve left my youngest son home for more than a few days. Of course, his biggest concern is what he’ll be eating for breakfast and dinner while I’m gone. Sponsored by Peapod.

Turkey Taco Bean Enchiladas - freeze ahead of time and bake when ready to eat

Unlike my older three boys, I’ve never left my youngest son alone with a babysitter. His older brothers were our built-in babysitters when they were at home, and after leaving the corporate world, I stopped traveling. So, this experience will hopefully make him more independent, and give him a taste of what’s to come in college. Freedom – yes! Fending for himself at mealtime – yikes! I actually think my absence will be a good thing for my son. He might even appreciate me more ;).

Turkey Taco Bean Enchiladas - freeze ahead of time and bake when ready to eat

I came up with these Frozen Ground Turkey Enchiladas for Peapod as a meal that can frozen ahead of time and then baked later. It’s the perfect make ahead dinner idea for my son while I’m gone. This recipe takes very little time to assemble because I cheated and used  store-bought enchilada and taco sauce in this recipe. Although I do make most meals from scratch, there are some store-bought sauces that are huge time-savers and very high quality. Chef Rick Bayless’ Frontera line of Mexican sauces are delicious. I’ve tried several and they are full-flavored and made with quality ingredients including real Mexican chilies.

These Turkey Taco Bean Enchiladas are filled with vegetarian refried beans, turkey taco meat and salsa.

Turkey Taco Bean Enchiladas - freeze ahead of time and bake when ready to eat

They are very easy to assemble and the best part is that these enchiladas can be frozen until ready to serve. Of course, you can also bake them the same day.

Turkey Taco Bean Enchiladas - freeze ahead of time and bake when ready to eat

My only suggestion is to hold off on adding the cheese on top if you’re going to freeze the enchiladas. I found the cheese didn’t melt as smoothly after it was frozen.

Turkey Taco Bean Enchiladas - freeze ahead of time and bake when ready to eat

Cover with plastic wrap and then foil before freezing.

Turkey Taco Bean Enchiladas - freeze ahead of time and bake when ready to eat

Finish off these Turkey Taco Bean Enchiladas with some fresh toppings sprinkled on top. Chopped avocados, fresh tomatoes, scallions and jalapeño peppers make these enchiladas extra festive. All you need is a simple green salad to make this dinner complete.

Turkey Taco Bean Enchiladas - freeze ahead of time and bake when ready to eat

Turkey Taco Bean Enchiladas

These enchiladas can be made ahead and frozen, or baked the same day.

Enchiladas

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 pound ground turkey
  • 1 pack low sodium taco seasoning
  • 6 whole grain tortillas (burrito size)
  • 1 1/2 cups vegetarian refried beans
  • 3/4 cup organic salsa
  • 1 8 ounce pack Frontera Taco Skillet Sauce
  • 1 8 ounce pack Frontera Red Chile Enchilada Sauce
  • 6 ounces organic sharp cheddar cheese (shredded)

Toppings

  • 1 avocado (chopped)
  • 2 scallions (chopped)
  • 1 jalapeño peppers (sliced)
  • 1 medium tomato (chopped)
  1. Heat olive oil in a large skillet. Add ground turkey and brown. Add taco seasoning and cook until liquid is evaporated. Set aside.

    Place a tortilla on a cutting board or other flat surface. Spread 1/4 cup refried beans on tortilla. Top with 1/2 cup turkey taco meat and 2 tablespoons salsa. Roll tortilla up. Repeat with remaining tortillas and filling. Place in an ovenproof baking dish. Pour Frontera Taco Skillet Sauce and Red Chile Enchilada Sauce on top of enchiladas. Sprinkle with cheese unless you’re planning on freezing the enchiladas.

To Freeze for Later

  1. Place enchiladas in a baking dish that is suitable to go directly from the freezer to the oven (I used an Emile Henry ceramic pan). Cover tightly with plastic wrap, then with aluminum foil.

    Freeze until ready to serve.

    When ready to serve, preheat oven to 375 degrees. Remove plastic wrap cover, sprinkle with cheese, and recover baking pan with aluminum foil. Bake for 30 minutes. Remove aluminum foil and continue to bake for another 20-25 minutes until hot and bubbly.

    Sprinkle with chopped tomatoes, scallions, jalapeño peppers and tomatoes.

To Serve Same Day

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Bake enchiladas for 20-25 minutes until hot and bubbly.

    Sprinkle with chopped tomatoes, scallions, jalapeño peppers and tomatoes.

This can serve 6-8 people. To serve 8, cut into squares lasagna style.


If you enjoy this Turkey Taco Bean Enchiladas make-ahead freezer meal, you might also like these From The Pod recipes:
Frozen Bean Burrito Casserole
Sweet Potato & Sausage Frozen Breakfast Burritos
Freezer Salisbury Steak

The post Turkey Taco Bean Enchiladas Recipe appeared first on Jeanette's Healthy Living.

]]>
http://jeanetteshealthyliving.com/turkey-taco-bean-enchiladas/feed/ 1
Strawberry Protein Smoothie Recipe http://jeanetteshealthyliving.com/strawberry-protein-smoothie/ http://jeanetteshealthyliving.com/strawberry-protein-smoothie/#comments Fri, 21 Apr 2017 09:00:40 +0000 http://jeanetteshealthyliving.com/?p=31166 This Strawberry Protein Smoothie packs in 27 grams of protein naturally, without any protein powders. Breakfast is the perfect opportunity to pump up your body with good nutrition. Now that the weather is getting warmer, I’ve been enjoying more smoothies for breakfast. Smoothies are an easy way to ensure you’re getting a good amount of protein and...

Read More »

The post Strawberry Protein Smoothie Recipe appeared first on Jeanette's Healthy Living.

]]>
Strawberry Protein Smoothie - this healthy smoothie packs in 27.5 grams of protein with no protein powder

This Strawberry Protein Smoothie packs in 27 grams of protein naturally, without any protein powders. Breakfast is the perfect opportunity to pump up your body with good nutrition. Now that the weather is getting warmer, I’ve been enjoying more smoothies for breakfast. Smoothies are an easy way to ensure you’re getting a good amount of protein and nutrients all in one glass. The key is to be mindful of each and every ingredient you use. Sponsored by Munchkin Grass Fed.
Strawberry Protein Smoothie - this healthy smoothie packs in 27 grams of protein with no protein powder

I started making smoothies for my family when my kids were young as an easy way to get them to eat fruit and drink their milk all in one sitting. Smoothies are like milk shakes, and who doesn’t love a milk shake. At the time, our pediatrician suggested I add an instant breakfast mix to the smoothies for extra nutrition. I have to admit I wasn’t thrilled about the ingredient list, but used these instant breakfast mixes for a while. Then, I switched to a whole food based protein powder mix, although I found these mixes tasted powdery in smoothies.

Strawberry Protein Smoothie - this healthy smoothie packs in 27 grams of protein with no protein powder

Over the years, I’ve learned how to make smooth, creamy smoothies without protein powders, using 100% whole ingredients that provide plenty of protein and nutrients.

Natural protein boosters that I’ve used in smoothies include:

  • Greek yogurt (12-17 grams protein in just 1/2 a cup)
  • Hemp seeds (7.4 grams protein in 2 tablespoons)
  • Grass fed milk (8.4 grams protein in a cup)
  • Almonds (4.3 grams protein in 3 tablespoons)
  • Nut butter (3.6 grams protein in 1 tablespoon peanut butter)
  • Oats (3.3 grams protein in 2 tablespoons)

This Strawberry Protein Smoothie gets its protein from a combination of Greek yogurt, hemp seeds, grass fed milk.

Why Grass Fed Milk?

I started using 100% grass fed milk in smoothies because of its health and environmental benefits. Grass fed milk contains up to 5x more Conjugated Linoleic Acid (CLA) and a more balanced ratio of Essential Fatty Acids compared to milk from grain fed cows.

CLA is a type of fat that may help with immune and inflammatory system support, improved bone mass, improved blood sugar regulation, reduced body fat, reduced risk of heart attack, and maintenance of lean body mass. The CLA in 100% grass fed milk is two to five times greater than the CLA content of milk from conventionally fed cows.

Essential Fatty Acids are important for kids because they help feed the brain and keep it healthy. Milk from 100% grass fed cows is also full of vitamin A, vitamin E, and Beta Carotene.

Strawberry Protein Smoothie - this healthy smoothie packs in 27 grams of protein with no protein powder

In addition to its health benefits, grass fed milk is also better for the environment. Imagine cows roaming around on rolling fields, eating only GMO-free grass, the way cows should be raised, not confined and fed soy, corn and grains which are hard for the cows to digest. On year-round grass fed farms, total greenhouse emissions, fuel use, sediment erosion, and phosphorus runoffs are lower than in confined systems, thus reducing the carbon footprint.

Grass fed milk wasn’t available when my kids were babies, but later this Spring Munchkin is launching a new infant formula, Munchkin Grass Fed. This formula is a great option for new moms as it is made with 100% grass fed milk, which provides higher levels of Vitamin A and a better balance of Omega 3 to 6 while being rBGH free and GMO free. Like all moms, I want the best for my kids, so choosing the best possible whole ingredients is a priority. Next time you make a smoothie for yourself or your kids, consider using grass fed milk for its nutritional and environmental benefits.

Strawberry Protein Smoothie

This smoothie packs in 27 grams of protein.

  • 1 cup strawberries
  • 1/2 cup grass-fed non-fat Greek yogurt
  • 1 cup grass-fed skim milk
  • 1 tablespoon hemp seeds
  • raw honey or maple syrup (optional, to taste)
  1. Place all ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth.

I enjoyed this smoothie without additional sweeteners, but if you wish, add some raw honey or maple syrup to taste.

Sources:

  1. World’s Healthiest Foods – Grass Fed Cow’s Milk

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Munchkin. The opinions and text are all mine.

The post Strawberry Protein Smoothie Recipe appeared first on Jeanette's Healthy Living.

]]>
http://jeanetteshealthyliving.com/strawberry-protein-smoothie/feed/ 2
Avocado Kale Hummus Oatmeal Breakfast Bowl Recipe http://jeanetteshealthyliving.com/avocado-kale-hummus-oatmeal-breakfast-bowl/ http://jeanetteshealthyliving.com/avocado-kale-hummus-oatmeal-breakfast-bowl/#comments Mon, 17 Apr 2017 11:36:43 +0000 http://jeanetteshealthyliving.com/?p=31105 This Avocado Kale Hummus Oatmeal Breakfast Bowl is filling and packed with protein, fiber, vitamins and minerals. I favor savory breakfasts over sweets in the morning, and find it interesting that in many countries outside of the United States, that breakfast is normally savory. Breakfast is often eaten 12-14 hours after dinner, so it’s important...

Read More »

The post Avocado Kale Hummus Oatmeal Breakfast Bowl Recipe appeared first on Jeanette's Healthy Living.

]]>
Avocado Kale Oatmeal Bowl - this healthy breakfast bowl is packed with nutrients

This Avocado Kale Hummus Oatmeal Breakfast Bowl is filling and packed with protein, fiber, vitamins and minerals. I favor savory breakfasts over sweets in the morning, and find it interesting that in many countries outside of the United States, that breakfast is normally savory. Breakfast is often eaten 12-14 hours after dinner, so it’s important to eat something nutrient-rich, rather than foods that are nutrient-poor and provide empty calories.
Avocado Kale Hummus Oatmeal Bowl - this healthy breakfast bowl is packed with nutrients
I have to admit I’m not a huge sweet oatmeal fan. I’d much rather enjoy a savory bowl of oatmeal. Perhaps, my familiarity with congee, the Chinese breakfast rice porridge, influences this preference. This savory avocado kale hummus oatmeal breakfast bowl is a nod to favorite part about congee – all the savory toppings that make it fun to eat.

Avocado Kale Hummus Oatmeal Bowl - this healthy breakfast bowl is packed with nutrients

Nutritional yeast bumps up the B vitamins in this avocado kale oatmeal breakfast bowl, and the kale packs in lots of vitamins and minerals. I love poached egg on top of savory oatmeal, with the runny yolk blending into the oatmeal to loosen it. Hummus and avocado add some natural creaminess, toasted sesame seeds add a little crunch, and Spanish smoked paprika provides some smokiness and color to the final dish.

Avocado Kale Hummus Oatmeal Breakfast Bowl

This savory breakfast bowl is filling and full of nutrition.

  • 1/4 cup quick cooking steel cut oats or regular oats
  • 1 cup kale (thinly sliced)
  • 1/2 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice (divided)
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 avocado
  • 2 tablespoons hummus
  • 1 teaspoon nutritional yeast
  • 1 teaspoon sesame seeds
  • sea salt (to taste)
  • black pepper (to taste)
  • Spanish smoked paprika
  1. Cook oats according to package directions. 

    Toss kale with olive oil, 1/2 teaspoon lemon juice, a dash of sea salt and black pepper. Massage kale or toss and let sit for a few minutes to soften leaves a little. 

    Poach egg by bringing a small pot of water to a boil; reduce heat to a simmer, break egg into water and poach for 2 1/2 – 3 minutes. Use slotted spoon to remove egg from pot.

    Slice avocado and sprinkle with 1/2 teaspoon lemon juice and dash of sea salt.

    To serve, smear hummus along inside of serving bowl. Spoon in cooked oats. Top with avocado slices, massaged kale, and poached egg. Sprinkle with nutritional yeast, sesame seeds and a dash of Spanish smoked paprika.

If you like this Avocado Kale Hummus Oatmeal Breakfast Bowl, you might also like these savory breakfast recipes featuring avocado:

Smashed Avocado Kale Poached Egg Toast

Smashed Avocado Kale Poached Egg Toast - this delicious savory breakfast is nutritious and filling.

Breakfast Smashed Avocado Tomato Poached Egg Toast

Smashed Avocado Toast with Tomato and Poached Egg - this healthy and delicious breakfast is easy to make, filling and nutritious

Smashed Avocado Smoked Salmon Egg Toast

Smashed Avocado Toast with Smoked Salmon and Egg - try this simple, healthy breakfast - it will keep your belly full all morning

Smashed Miso Avocado Egg Cup

Smashed Miso Avocado and Poached Egg Cup - this easy breakfast idea is delicious and nutritious

The post Avocado Kale Hummus Oatmeal Breakfast Bowl Recipe appeared first on Jeanette's Healthy Living.

]]>
http://jeanetteshealthyliving.com/avocado-kale-hummus-oatmeal-breakfast-bowl/feed/ 2
Smashed Avocado Kale Poached Egg Toast http://jeanetteshealthyliving.com/smashed-avocado-kale-poached-egg-toast/ http://jeanetteshealthyliving.com/smashed-avocado-kale-poached-egg-toast/#comments Wed, 12 Apr 2017 09:00:44 +0000 http://jeanetteshealthyliving.com/?p=31085 Smashed Avocado Kale Poached Egg Toast is a healthy and delicious breakfast, packed with nutrients to start the day. I love savory breakfast foods, and smashed avocado toast is one of my favorites. There are so many variations – it’s really up to your own imagination. A few years ago, I had a simple avocado...

Read More »

The post Smashed Avocado Kale Poached Egg Toast appeared first on Jeanette's Healthy Living.

]]>
Smashed Avocado Kale Poached Egg Toast - this delicious savory breakfast is nutritious and filling.

Smashed Avocado Kale Poached Egg Toast is a healthy and delicious breakfast, packed with nutrients to start the day. I love savory breakfast foods, and smashed avocado toast is one of my favorites. There are so many variations – it’s really up to your own imagination. A few years ago, I had a simple avocado kale toast at a local restaurant for breakfast. I loved the idea of incorporating kale at breakfast time. A runny poached egg on top is the pièce de résistance to this delightful breakfast or brunch dish.

Smashed Avocado Kale Poached Egg Toast - this delicious savory breakfast is nutritious and filling.

Avocado toast became popular a few years ago, and now it can be found on restaurant menus. In fact, an”avocado bar” recently opened that serves all things avocado – avocado toast, avocado in salad and bowls, and avocado smoothies. I keep a few avocados ripening on my kitchen window sill almost all the time so I can make guacamole, smashed avocado toast, or toss it into salads.

This smashed avocado kale poached egg toast was inspired by an avocado toast I had a few years ago at a local restaurant. Honestly avocado toast is so easy to make at home, there’s no reason to pay a premium eating it at a restaurant.

Smashed Avocado Kale Poached Egg Toast - this delicious savory breakfast is nutritious and filling.

The key is to massage the kale with a little olive oil, lemon juice and salt to soften it up a bit. This is a little bit messy, so alternatively, you can use utensils to toss the kale with olive oil, lemon juice and a pinch of salt and let it sit for a few minutes. I prefer the more tender lacinato kale leaves to the curly variety for avocado toast.

The pièce de résistance is a runny poached egg. A sprinkle of furikake and togarishi (Japanese seven spice blend) finishes this gorgeous, deliciously healthy Smashed Avocado Kale Poached Egg Toast.

Smashed Avocado Kale Poached Egg Toast - this delicious savory breakfast is nutritious and filling.

Enjoy this Smashed Avocado Kale Poached Egg Toast. It’s loaded with protein, fiber, and nutrients, and has just 327 calories per serving.

Smashed Avocado Kale Poached Egg Toast - this delicious savory breakfast is nutritious and filling.

Smashed Avocado Kale Egg Toast

  • 1 avocado
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 2 cups kale leaves (stems removed, thinly sliced or chopped)
  • 1 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 2 eggs
  • sea salt (to taste)
  • black pepper (to taste)
  • furikake (optional)
  • togarishi (optional)
  • 2 slices whole grain or gluten-free toast
  1. Put garlic in mortar along with a sprinkle of sea salt. Pound until pureed. Add avocado and smash; season to taste with sea salt.

    Toss sliced kale leaves with olive oil, lemon juice, a pinch of sea salt and a dash of black pepper. Toss well or massage with your hands. Let sit for a few minutes until leaves wilt slightly.

Poach Eggs

  1. Bring small pot of water to a boil; reduce heat to a simmer. Stir water in pot until water swirls around. Break eggs into pot, one by one. Poach eggs for 2 1/2 – 3 minutes, depending on your preference. Use slotted spoon to remove from water.

To Serve

  1. Top each slice of toast with smashed avocado, then top with kale, and finally a poached egg. 

    Sprinkle with furikake and togarishi if desired. Cayenne pepper or smoked paprika could also be used.

The post Smashed Avocado Kale Poached Egg Toast appeared first on Jeanette's Healthy Living.

]]>
http://jeanetteshealthyliving.com/smashed-avocado-kale-poached-egg-toast/feed/ 6
Roasted Tomatillo Salsa Recipe http://jeanetteshealthyliving.com/roasted-tomatillo-salsa-recipe/ http://jeanetteshealthyliving.com/roasted-tomatillo-salsa-recipe/#comments Mon, 10 Apr 2017 09:00:37 +0000 http://jeanetteshealthyliving.com/?p=31141 Roasted Tomatillo Salsa or Salsa Verde as it is commonly known, is a delicious dip or condiment for Mexican food lovers. Roasting the vegetables adds an extra layer of smokiness that takes this salsa verde to a different level than regular salsa verde. My youngest son loves Mexican food, and he loves condiments. I’ve been...

Read More »

The post Roasted Tomatillo Salsa Recipe appeared first on Jeanette's Healthy Living.

]]>
Roasted Tomatillo Salsa - this roasted version of salsa verde has some heat and smokiness. Delicious as a dip, condiment or served on top of salads

Roasted Tomatillo Salsa or Salsa Verde as it is commonly known, is a delicious dip or condiment for Mexican food lovers. Roasting the vegetables adds an extra layer of smokiness that takes this salsa verde to a different level than regular salsa verde. My youngest son loves Mexican food, and he loves condiments. I’ve been making this roasted tomatillo salsa for the past several months, and it has become a staple in our refrigerator.
Roasted Tomatillo Salsa - this roasted version of salsa verde has some heat and smokiness. Delicious as a dip, condiment or served on top of salads

I am the queen of condiments. In fact, I probably have more condiments in my refrigerator than most any body. Condiments add that extra oomph to many recipes and meals.

For example, just a few spoonfuls of this roasted tomatillo salsa on top of tacos, quesadillas, nachos, or a salad will elevate your meal into something more special. This spicy, slightly smoky salsa has become a favorite in our house, and my youngest son requests it often.

The first time I made salsa verde, I simply boiled all the vegetables (excluding the cilantro), then pureed them. Although it was tasty, it did not have the extra depth of flavor that the roasted tomatillo salsa has.

The ingredients for roasted tomatillo salsa is very simple – fresh tomatillos, jalapeno peppers, garlic, cilantro and lemon. The method of cooking is what makes the difference.

Roasted Tomatillo Salsa - this roasted version of salsa verde has some heat and smokiness. Delicious as a dip, condiment or served on top of salads

Roasting the vegetables adds an extra layer of flavor and some smokiness.

Roasted Tomatillo Salsa - this roasted version of salsa verde has some heat and smokiness. Delicious as a dip, condiment or served on top of salads

Recently, I used this Roasted Tomatillo Salsa on top of my son’s favorite Layered Mexican dip as a hearty after-school snack. I keep a jar of this salsa verde in my refrigerator as a staple now. It is also delicious on salads instead of salad dressing (and it’s fat-free).

Roasted Tomatillo Salsa - this roasted version of salsa verde has some heat and smokiness. Delicious as a dip, condiment or served on top of salads

Roasted Tomatillo Salsa

This is commonly called salsa verde due to its green color. Roasting the vegetables gives this version an extra layer of smoky flavor.

  • 1 pound tomatillos (husks removed)
  • 2 whole jalapeno peppers
  • 4 cloves garlic (peeled)
  • 1 cup cilantro (leaves and tender stems only)
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 onion (minced)
  • sea salt (to taste)
  1. Place tomatillos, jalapeno peppers and garlic on foil-lined baking sheet. Broil five minutes on one side; then turn vegetables over and broil another 5-10 minutes until tomatillos turn an olive-green color and jalapeno peppers have some brown spots. Tomatillos will feel slightly soft to the touch. Cool.

    Remove stem and seeds from jalapeno peppers; place tomatillos, jalapeno peppers and garlic in blender; blend until you have a coarse puree. Add cilantro and water and continue blending briefly until cilantro is finely chopped. Pour into serving dish and add minced onion; season to taste with salt.

Adapted from Rick Bayless.

The post Roasted Tomatillo Salsa Recipe appeared first on Jeanette's Healthy Living.

]]>
http://jeanetteshealthyliving.com/roasted-tomatillo-salsa-recipe/feed/ 4
A Healthy Well Balanced Life http://jeanetteshealthyliving.com/healthy-well-balanced-life/ http://jeanetteshealthyliving.com/healthy-well-balanced-life/#respond Wed, 05 Apr 2017 09:00:03 +0000 http://jeanetteshealthyliving.com/?p=30551 In this post, I identify 8 elements of a Healthy Well Balanced Life. Each element contributes to a healthy self. Helping others is a critical element which, when combined with all the rest of the elements, leads to a meaningful and purposeful life. Sponsored by MegaFood. Throughout my adult years, I have tried to seek...

Read More »

The post A Healthy Well Balanced Life appeared first on Jeanette's Healthy Living.

]]>
How To Attain a Healthy Well Balanced Life - these eight elements are all important to achieving healthy well balanced life

In this post, I identify 8 elements of a Healthy Well Balanced Life. Each element contributes to a healthy self. Helping others is a critical element which, when combined with all the rest of the elements, leads to a meaningful and purposeful life. Sponsored by MegaFood.

How To Attain a Healthy Well Balanced Life - these eight elements are all important to achieving healthy well balanced life

Throughout my adult years, I have tried to seek a well-balanced life. However, my definition of a well-balanced life has evolved over time. As a full-time working executive and mom, a well-balanced life simply meant work-life balance – balancing the time I spent at work so I had enough time at home with my family. Once I took the leap to stay home with my kids full-time, I juggled taking care of my kids, my in-laws who lived with us, and filled in my “extra” time cooking for friends with cancer. The line between work and home dissolved, and I actually had less balance in my life because I was giving 100% of myself to everyone else, and had none left for me. I eventually burned out.

I now know that a well-balanced life is multi-dimensional. At the core of a well-balanced life is a healthy self – physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually. If we ourselves are healthy, then we are better able to improve the lives of others, which in turn makes our lives even better.

Elements of a Healthy Well Balanced Life

How To Attain a Healthy Well Balanced Life - these eight elements are all important to achieving healthy well balanced life

Here are 8 Elements that help me live a Healthy Well-Balanced Life, including how I try to put each one into practice in my daily life:

  • Positive Mindset – My 90-year old aunt has a saying, “Play while you work and work while you play.” All her life, she has looked at problems as opportunities to have fun and solve problems. This positive attitude has played a huge part in her healthy outlook on life. For me, this blog is my “play-work” space. Coming up with recipes, cooking, sharing healthy living tips, and sharing about my faith are all things I enjoy, so it doesn’t feel like work. I don’t write about topics that don’t interest me. I want to keep work fun.
  • Meaningful Relationships – Spending quality time with family and friends and connecting with them on a deeper level has made my relationships so much richer and meaningful. The most fulfilling relationships are those where we can be open and honest with each other, and supportive rather than judgmental.
  • Stress Reduction – This is an area I am still working on, but I am slowly making progress. I’m a worrier by nature, which leads to anxiety because I want to know the answers to long-term problems today. My husband always reminds me “Don’t worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will bring its own worries. Today’s trouble is enough for today” (Matthew 6:34). So, I am trying to focus on the present, and not get ahead of myself when I am faced with a challenge.
  • Eating Healthy – For me, eating healthy means a couple of things. First, it means including a wide variety of vegetables and fruits in my diet, as well as eating more whole grains. Second, it means keeping food proportions on my plate in check (50% non-starchy vegetables; 25% starchy vegetables or whole grains, 25% lean protein). And third, it means preparing foods in a healthy manner (e.g., stir-frying, steaming, roasting). To ensure I’m getting all the daily nutrients my body needs, I fill in the gap with MegaFood’s Multi for Women 40+.

MegaFood Muti for Women

  • Regular Exercise – I’m not an athletic person by nature, but I do enjoy walking outdoors in nature and exercise videos. I’ve learned that yoga and tennis aren’t for me and that’s ok. Finding what you enjoy is the most important thing because you’ll actually do it.
  • Getting Enough Sleep – Although I’m a night owl, I have been more vigilant about targeting 7-8 hours of sleep a night the past several months. Getting enough sleep makes a huge difference in my energy level the next morning.
  • Quiet Time – Carving out 30-60 minutes of quiet time each morning is helpful in setting the tone and my mood for the day. Quiet time counts as “me time” so it’s an automatic way of ensuring I take care of my needs at the start of the day. My tank is filled up so I have the mental energy to get done what is most important that day. I use my quiet time reading inspirational devotions and doing Bible study homework.
  • Helping Others – I believe this is a big part of living a healthy well-balanced life. Did you know that we’re actually hard-wired to give? Our brains churn out a pleasurable response when we engage in giving. -1 From personal experience, helping other people has played a huge role in keeping my life in balance. Why? Because it helps keep life in perspective – what’s really important versus what’s urgent, what is necessary versus extraneous. Whether it’s taking care of my 90-year old aunt, cooking for someone with cancer, donating clothes to people in need, or just picking up the phone to let someone know I care, I’ve learned that even little things can make a huge difference in someone else’s life. It’s the loving thought behind the act that counts.

And now I have a fun and easy way for you to help close your nutritional gap while helping improve the lives of others in need of adequate nutrition. That’s what I call a twofer!

How To Attain a Healthy Well Balanced Life - these eight elements are all important to achieving healthy well balanced life

The MegaPledge

I started working with MegaFood as a brand ambassador last year, and what I am most impressed with is their big and bold promise to improve lives. MegaFood began this mission in 2016 by partnering with three New England retailers to establish community gardens in areas that significantly lacked access to healthy food.

Recently, MegaFood teamed up with Wholesome Wave to help make an immediate impact on people’s lives. Wholesome Wave is a nonprofit dedicated to making fresh fruits and vegetables available to everyone regardless of income. They have a shared vision to cure nutritional poverty. Erin Stokes, MegaFood’s Medical Director, explains nutritional poverty: “Most Americans are consuming a diet that is rich in calories but poor in nutritive value.” -2

MegaFood and Wholesome Wave have come up the MegaPledge to help you achieve optimal health while helping to cure nutritional poverty.

What is the MegaPledge? MegaFood is asking Americans to start the New Year right by pledging to improve their own life while also the lives of others – it’s a win-win! MegaPledge is all about supporting their larger vision to cure nutritional poverty.

Why? Findings reported in July 2015 by the Center for Disease Control demonstrate that Americans do not consume enough of the right foods to get all the essential nutrients needed to maintain optimal health. -3 Many of us put a lot of effort into making sure we’re eating healthy and living a healthy lifestyle. But, our bodies sometimes need more nutrients than we’re getting. That’s where MegaFood Multivitamin Collection comes in. Dr. Low Dog has helped MegaFood formulate gender and age specific multivitamins to help fill the gaps in our diets with quality nutrition.

What I love about MegaFood supplements is that they are made with fresh whole organic fruits and vegetables, purchased from farmers they know and trust. This produce is minimally processed using their Slo-Food Process to ensure optimal nutrient content in the final product.

How? All you have to do is pledge to work on minding the nutritional gap through a healthy diet & multivitamins. By taking this pledge, not only are you taking a step towards improving your own health, but you’ll be supporting someone in need.

MegaFood’s pledge in return:

  • All pledgers will be entered for a chance to win a 12-month supply of MegaFood Doctor Formulated Multivitamins for you and a friend
  • All pledgers will be entered for a chance to win a wellness retreat to a 3-day Yoga Journal LIVE event for two in New York City
  • The first 20,000 pledgers will also receive a $5 off coupon
  • MegaFood will donate 1 bottle of Multis for every pledge (up to 20,000) to someone in need
  • PLUS MegaFood will make a donation to Wholesome Wave, equivalent to 2 servings of fruits and veggies per pledge for those in need, up to 40,000 servings (80,000 with USDA match)

Your pledge + MegaFood’s pledge = Filling in Your Nutritional Gap + Helping to cure Nutritional Poverty = win! win!

So take the MegaPledge now – you’ll be helping yourself while helping someone else in need.

How To Attain a Healthy Well Balanced Life - these eight elements are all important to achieving healthy well balanced life

Sources:

  1. Hard-Wired for Giving, Wall Street Journal
  2. Nutritional Poverty, Erin Stokes
  3. CDC’s Second Nutrition Report

Disclosure: This blog post was sponsored by MegaFood as part of my participation in their Ambassador program. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

The post A Healthy Well Balanced Life appeared first on Jeanette's Healthy Living.

]]>
http://jeanetteshealthyliving.com/healthy-well-balanced-life/feed/ 0
Thai Coconut Curry Lentil Soup http://jeanetteshealthyliving.com/thai-coconut-curry-lentil-soup/ http://jeanetteshealthyliving.com/thai-coconut-curry-lentil-soup/#comments Mon, 03 Apr 2017 09:00:00 +0000 http://174.120.127.67/~jeanette/2010/10/thai-coconut-curry-lentil-soup.html This Thai Coconut Curry Lentil Soup has sweet and spicy flavors from coconut milk, sweet potatoes and red curry paste. Lemongrass and kaffir lime leaves add extra fragrance to this delicious, healthy soup. I love Thai food, especially Thai curries. Thai curry is completely different from Indian curries. The base for Thai curries is Thai curry...

Read More »

The post Thai Coconut Curry Lentil Soup appeared first on Jeanette's Healthy Living.

]]>
Thai Coconut Curry Lentil Soup - coconut milk, lemongrass, kaffir lime leaves and Thai red curry paste are key ingredients in this creamy, fragrant lentil soup

This Thai Coconut Curry Lentil Soup has sweet and spicy flavors from coconut milk, sweet potatoes and red curry paste. Lemongrass and kaffir lime leaves add extra fragrance to this delicious, healthy soup. I love Thai food, especially Thai curries. Thai curry is completely different from Indian curries. The base for Thai curries is Thai curry paste, which comes in a variety of colors/mixtures. The most common are red Thai curry, green Thai curry and yellow Thai curry. I find the flavor of Thai curries more complex because it is made many fragrant ingredients, such as lemongrass, Thai red chilies, onion, garlic, coriander, galangal, paprika, kaffir lime leaves, and cumin.
Thai Coconut Curry Lentil Soup - coconut milk, lemongrass, kaffir lime leaves and Thai red curry paste are key ingredients in this creamy, fragrant lentil soup
This Thai coconut curry lentil soup was one of the first recipes I created for my blog in 2010 when I was craving both Thai coconut curry soup and lentil soup. Perhaps, it’s because I wanted to relive the heady bowl of Thai Coconut Curry Noodle Soup I had for lunch at a local restaurant that rainy cool Spring day. Recently, I made this soup for a friend, and made it even more fragrant by adding some fresh lemongrass and kaffir lime leaves.

There is something warming and completely comforting about Thai curry paste in soups and stews. The same can be said for lentil soup. Thai red curry paste, coconut milk and lentils just seem to go together naturally in this Thai Coconut Curry Lentil soup.

Thai Red Curry PasteThai curry paste can be found at Asian grocery stores and in the ethnic aisle in some supermarkets. Thai red curry paste typically contains lemongrass, Thai red chilies, onion, garlic, coriander, galangal, paprika, lime leaves, cumin, and turmeric. This curry paste is quite potent, so most recipes only need a few spoonfuls. I usually freeze any extras in small portions, so I have it on hand.

If you can’t find fresh lemongrass and kaffir lime leaves, feel free to leave them out of the recipe. That’s the way I originally made this soup back in 2010. Be sure to use real coconut milk (the unsweetened kind that comes in a can). It mellows out the spicy curry, and adds a velvety mouth feel.

I hope you find this Thai Coconut Curry Lentil Soup as comforting as I do.

Thai Coconut Curry Lentil Soup - coconut milk, lemongrass, kaffir lime leaves and Thai red curry paste are key ingredients in this creamy, fragrant lentil soup

Thai Coconut Curry Lentil Soup

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 cup onion (finely chopped)
  • 1 clove garlic (minced)
  • 1 teaspoon ginger (minced)
  • 1 teaspoon Thai red curry paste (use 2 teaspoons if you like it spicy)
  • 6 cups vegetable broth
  • 1 cup red lentils (picked through for stones, rinsed)
  • 1 medium sweet potato (cut into 1/2" pieces)
  • 1 stalk lemongrass (tender bulb only, smashed with a mallet)
  • 2 kaffir lime leaves
  • 1/4 teaspoon turmeric
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/4 cup coconut milk
  • fresh kaffir lime leaf slivers or minced cilantro (for garnish, optional)
  1. Heat olive oil in a medium saucepan. Add the onions, ginger and garlic. Cook over medium heat until softened, about 3-4 minutes. Stir in Thai red curry paste, and cook several minutes or until fragrant. Add broth, lentils, sweet potato, lemongrass, kaffir lime leaves and turmeric. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to medium-low, cover and cook about 20-25 minutes or until lentils and sweet potatoes are soft. Remove lemongrass and kaffir lime leaves. Add salt and stir in coconut milk. Cook five more minutes. Puree if desired. Garnish with fresh cilantro.

I use homemade vegetable stock such as Magic Mineral Broth for this soup because it has extra nutrients in it.

The post Thai Coconut Curry Lentil Soup appeared first on Jeanette's Healthy Living.

]]>
http://jeanetteshealthyliving.com/thai-coconut-curry-lentil-soup/feed/ 17
Breakfast Coconut Milk Quinoa with Fresh Fruit Recipe {Video} http://jeanetteshealthyliving.com/breakfast-coconut-milk-quinoa-with-fresh-fruit/ http://jeanetteshealthyliving.com/breakfast-coconut-milk-quinoa-with-fresh-fruit/#comments Wed, 29 Mar 2017 09:00:51 +0000 http://jeanetteshealthyliving.com/?p=17828 This Breakfast Coconut Milk Quinoa with Fresh Fruit is the perfect way to start off the day. It’s nutritious and hearty, and is packed with protein and nutrients. Fresh strawberries and bananas, as well as toasted coconut and almonds top this healthy breakfast porridge, a wonderful alternative to oatmeal and other porridges. Looking for a...

Read More »

The post Breakfast Coconut Milk Quinoa with Fresh Fruit Recipe {Video} appeared first on Jeanette's Healthy Living.

]]>
Breakfast Coconut Milk Quinoa with Fresh Fruit - this healthy hearty breakfast is the perfect way to start the day

This Breakfast Coconut Milk Quinoa with Fresh Fruit is the perfect way to start off the day. It’s nutritious and hearty, and is packed with protein and nutrients. Fresh strawberries and bananas, as well as toasted coconut and almonds top this healthy breakfast porridge, a wonderful alternative to oatmeal and other porridges.
Breakfast Coconut Milk Quinoa with Fresh Fruit - this healthy hearty breakfast is the perfect way to start the day

Looking for a new healthy breakfast idea? Give this Breakfast Coconut Milk Quinoa with Fresh Strawberries and Bananas a whirl. Quinoa is cooked in coconut milk with a touch of vanilla, sweetened with raw coconut sugar and topped off with some fresh fruit (strawberries and bananas in this case).

Breakfast Coconut Milk Quinoa with Fresh Fruit - this healthy hearty breakfast is the perfect way to start the day

Quinoa has become so popular these days because of its health benefits. Not only is it high in protein, but it’s a great source of vitamin B6, folate, iron, and zinc. One cup of cooked quinoa has 180 calories, 2 grams fiber and 7 grams protein.

Breakfast Coconut Milk Quinoa with Fresh Fruit - this healthy hearty breakfast is the perfect way to start the day

Now that quinoa is so popular and readily available, you can find it in all different varieties – white, red, and tri-color. I like to switch things up and use different varieties depending on my mood.

Breakfast Coconut Milk Quinoa with Fresh Fruit - this healthy hearty breakfast is the perfect way to start the day

For all of you quinoa lovers, I hope you’ll give this Breakfast Coconut Milk Quinoa with Fresh Fruit a try. It’s the perfect way to start off your day!

Watch my video to see how easy this is to make.

For more quinoa recipes, click here: MORE QUINOA RECIPES.

Breakfast Coconut Milk Quinoa with Fresh Fruit

This nutritious hearty breakfast is the perfect way to start the day.

  • 1/2 cup uncooked quinoa (rinsed, drained)
  • 1/3 cup coconut milk
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 2 tablespoons organic raw coconut sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • dash sea salt
  • 2 tablespoons toasted coconut
  • 2 tablespoons toasted almonds
  • 1/2 cup fresh strawberries
  • 1/2 cup sliced bananas
  • coconut milk or almond milk (for serving)
  1. Place quinoa, coconut milk, water, sugar, vanilla and salt in saucepan. Bring to a boil; reduce heat to low and cook, covered, for 15 minutes. Turn heat off and let sit for 5 minutes.

    Spoon into serving bowls and top with toasted coconut, almonds, strawberries and bananas.

The post Breakfast Coconut Milk Quinoa with Fresh Fruit Recipe {Video} appeared first on Jeanette's Healthy Living.

]]>
http://jeanetteshealthyliving.com/breakfast-coconut-milk-quinoa-with-fresh-fruit/feed/ 12
Finding and Following Your Spiritual Calling http://jeanetteshealthyliving.com/finding-and-following-your-spiritual-calling/ http://jeanetteshealthyliving.com/finding-and-following-your-spiritual-calling/#respond Sun, 26 Mar 2017 09:00:49 +0000 http://jeanetteshealthyliving.com/?p=30975 This post shares my personal journey finding and following my spiritual calling. If you’re looking for meaning and purpose in your life, my hope is that my story will inspire you to discover your spiritual calling and live it out in a meaningful way. Following my calling has brought an intensity to my life (in a...

Read More »

The post Finding and Following Your Spiritual Calling appeared first on Jeanette's Healthy Living.

]]>
This post shares my personal journey finding and following my spiritual calling. If you’re looking for meaning and purpose in your life, my hope is that my story will inspire you to discover your spiritual calling and live it out in a meaningful way. Following my calling has brought an intensity to my life (in a good way) that I could never have imagined, a feeling that what I’m doing makes a difference for someone, and is meeting a deep need in this world, no matter how big or small.

Finding and Following Your Spiritual Calling

Earlier this year, I wrote a post about Living A Purposeful Life, something I’ve been focused on fervently the past several months. I set a goal at the beginning of this year “To make a difference in someone’s life by: (1) showing someone they are loved when they feel unloved, (2) meeting someone at their deepest need, (3) developing deeper relationships/connections and having meaningful conversations.”

Here’s my progress report so far. I have been trying to prioritize what I focus on each day to make better use of my precious time. My days are full and I feel a sense of urgency to do something each day that directly or indirectly helps someone. It’s not always easy to stay focused. However, having a goal that I feel accountable for drives my day-to-day activities. It’s definitely a work in progress, but I am committed to making a difference in someone’s life, big or small.

BEFORE FINDING MY SPIRITUAL CALLING

I haven’t always cared about or focused on living life on purpose. For most of my life, I’ve just lived without giving much thought to what the purpose of living is. However, several years ago, I started to ponder what the purpose of my life was. Three of my boys were out of the house, with just one left. I felt a void as I pondered being an empty nester in another four years. I’ve spent 24 years of my life being a mom so far, which has filled my time and given me purpose. Like many mothers, as we experience this phase of our life coming to a close, it can be unsettling. We go from having a full-time job to being unemployed, as our kids wean themselves from needing us to becoming more independent. This is how life is supposed to go.

FINDING MY SPIRITUAL CALLING

I believe we all need to feel we have a purpose for living. When we feel we have no purpose, we can start feeling lonely, lost, insecure. This can sometimes lead to anxiety over our circumstances, and perhaps even depression. I know I’ve felt lost and anxious many times when I believed there was little or no purpose to what I was doing on a day-to-day basis. I was just being, not living.

I now realize that God has a purpose and a plan for each one of us. It’s just a matter of whether or not we are ready to accept God’s plan to live our life with purpose.

Ephesians 2-10

As I started focusing on my God-given gifts and talents and accepted new challenges as growth opportunities rather than stumbling blocks, I began to discover my spiritual calling.  This perspective – that God created us to work to bring Him glory and serve others with the gifts He’s given us – has transformed how I live my life.

I remember listening to Matthew West’s song Do Something in the car several years ago and being hit hard by the lyrics.

I’d been sitting on the sidelines for way too long. Sure, I had helped people here and there over the years and volunteered at my children’s schools and church, but the time I allotted to helping out was based on what I could fit into my “busy” schedule, not based on the needs of others. And it certainly wasn’t much considering there are 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. It was time to step into the world to do something more.


“I woke up this morning
Saw a world full of trouble now
Thought, how’d we ever get so far down
How’s it ever gonna turn around
So I turned my eyes to Heaven
I thought, “God, why don’t You do something?”
Well, I just couldn’t bear the thought of
People living in poverty
Children sold into slavery
The thought disgusted me
So, I shook my fist at Heaven
Said, “God, why don’t You do something?”
He said, “I did, I created you”
If not us, then who
If not me and you
Right now, it’s time for us to do something
If not now, then when
Will we see an end
To all this pain
It’s not enough to do nothing
It’s time for us to do something
I’m so tired of talking
About how we are God’s hands and feet
But it’s easier to say than to be
Live like angels of apathy who tell ourselves
It’s alright, “somebody else will do something”
Well, I don’t know about you
But I’m sick and tired of life with no desire
I don’t want a flame, I want a fire
I wanna be the one who stands up and says,
“I’m gonna do something”
We are the salt of the earth
We are a city on a hill
But we’re never gonna change the world
By standing still
No we won’t stand still
No we won’t stand still
No we won’t stand still”
 

So, how did I start discovering what my spiritual calling is? I’m not an expert in this area. All I can do is share my personal experience. I spent many years not thinking about my calling or even knowing what a spiritual calling meant. I was on the never-ending treadmill of working in the corporate world, being a busy mom of four boys, and taking care of my in-laws who lived with us.

A few years ago I started devoting more time to think about my purpose in life. I started spending time each morning with God and I continue to do this. I read several daily devotions, study the Bible through women’s Bible study groups I’ve joined, and I spend time praying each morning. I thank God for the many provisions He’s given me and ask Him to show me how to use them to glorify Him and serve others.

I also read inspirational books like Rick Warren’s The Purpose Driven Life, Joyce Meyer’s Seize the Day: Living On Purpose And Making Every Day Count, and Michael Hyatt’s Living Forward: A Proven Plan To Stop Drifting And Get The Life You Want.

Are you ready to ask God how to put your gifts and talents to work for His glory and to serve others?

WHAT IS YOUR SPIRITUAL CALLING?

The Place God Calls You To - Frederick Buechner

One way I think of a calling is this: where your passion, gifts and talents, and the world’s deepest needs intersect. At the present moment, I believe my spiritual calling is the intersection of my passion (cooking), God-given gifts and talents (mercy, compassion, good with people one-on-one, ability to provide comfort in a calm, unintrusive manner), and one deep need in our world (highly independent people who don’t like to ask for help but find themselves in circumstances where they could use a helping hand).

I’m most comfortable diving in to help people where these three areas intersect. It doesn’t sound like a big calling, but it is what I believe my calling is.

Your Spiritual Calling Circle Intersection

I do believe our calling can change depending on what stage of life or season we’re in. I believe my calling was to care for, nurture, love, feed, and teach my children to grow into responsible, young adults when my children were younger. Currently, I believe my calling is to nurture and love upon people going through a rough spot who don’t feel comfortable asking people for help. This can take the form of cooking for cancer patients, and it currently includes taking care of an elderly relative in deep need of help.

Sure, it can be scary to follow our spiritual calling. I know I’ve been afraid to commit on more than one occasion. Sometimes, it feels like I’m standing on a cliff and I need a little push to take the leap. (My husband gave me the gentle push recently to dive into a situation I was overwhelmed and paralyzed by, but I can honestly say it has been an amazing growth experience so far).

Other times, I make excuses that I’m too busy. (When I told a friend I was too busy to help someone she wanted me to reach out to, she spoke in brutal honesty that my time was what I made of it…it was all a matter of what I made a priority. Those words stung at the time, but gave me the nudge to help that person in need and it was richly rewarding.)

Standing on the sidelines is ignoring the world’s deepest needs and missing out on our calling. My faith and trust has deepened and I now know God will provide a parachute and catch me if I jump off the cliff. And if I keep saying no when I am called, God will keep knocking until I say “yes.” I have experienced both of these in the past several months.

Playing small does not serve the world - Marianne Williamson

Are you ready to be called? If you’ve been called, what have you been called to do?

THINGS THAT HELP ME FOLLOW MY SPIRITUAL CALLING

I’m new at following my calling, but I would like to share some things I’ve learned so far that have helped me stay focused on pursuing my spiritual calling.

  • MAKE YOURSELF AVAILABLE: I’ve turned down opportunities to follow my calling when I thought I was too busy with “more important” things or didn’t “have the time.” We need to be ready and willing to do what God calls us to do; otherwise we might miss an opportunity to meet a greater need than our own.
  • UNDERSTAND THE PURPOSE OF FOLLOWING YOUR CALLING: Following our calling has nothing to do with us. It’s all about bringing glory to God, not ourselves. Even if we get the kudos, we must always remember that the kudos belong solely to God.
  • TRUST AND OBEY: Human nature causes us to want to control as much of our life and circumstances as we can. But, following our calling requires us to learn to trust and obey God. Just as parents have the best interests of their children at heart, so does God; children learn to trust and obey their parents as they recognize their intentions are good.
  • FACE YOUR FEARS: Following my spiritual calling has required me to face my fears. I am by nature a planner, so I like to know what’s ahead of me before I dive in. One of my devotions (In Touch by Dr. Stanley) said “many people miss God’s best because apprehension keeps them from stepping out in faith to do His will.” Recently, I found myself stuck, paralyzed by fear – fear of the overwhelming situation standing in front of me, fear of diving in and fear of finding no end in sight, fear of giving up so much of my time for an indefinite period of time to help someone else. Yes, following our calling can be scary, but it is so rewarding.
  • ASK FOR HELP: Children cry out their parents when they need help. Similarly, as Christians, we can cry out for help and God will answer our prayers. There have been times when I am at a loss and am facing a mountain that I can’t move. God doesn’t expect nor does he want us to face challenges alone. He wants us to ask Him for help. I had a personal experience recently when I was faced with a seemingly insurmountable problem and couldn’t figure out how to proceed. My morning devotion spoke about crying out to Jesus and that’s what I did at that very moment. After I was done with my morning quiet time, I saw a text from a friend I hadn’t heard from in a while, asking to catch up with me. We spoke by phone, and she connected me with someone who knew exactly how to help me climb the insurmountable mountain I was facing. I couldn’t believe it! God had answered my cry for help on the spot. Isaiah 41:10-13 says, “So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.”
  • BE PATIENT: I’m an impatient person by nature. I like immediate results. Just ask my husband. When I ask him to do something for me, I want him to do it now, not an hour later, not tomorrow. Following my calling has taught me to wait on God, to trust His timing, not try to force my own schedule. I have to humble myself to patiently wait, to trust God’s judgement, not my own, and to walk in obedience to God. Psalm 46:10 is a constant reminder for me to “Be still and know that I am God,” to slow down, wait, and listen.
  • STAY FOCUSED: It’s so easy to get distracted these days with the internet, iPhones, and social media. Once I know where God wants me to focus my time, I try to stay laser focused. I prioritize my time better, eliminate time wasters, and spend my precious time focused on what is most important. Another type of distraction is when people question my motive for helping someone. This has happened to me in the past. I remember being surprised and hurt when I learned someone was questioning why I was helping someone I barely knew. Now, I have learned not to let this distract me from following my spiritual calling. The work I am doing is too important to God’s plan.
  • LET GOD LEAD: Isaiah 64:8 says, “But now, O Lord, You are our Father; we are the clay, and You our potter; and all we are the work of Your Hand.” In order to do God’s work and fulfill our calling, we must submit ourselves to God and let Him lead. See TRUST AND OBEY above. I remember a number of years ago, a woman in my Bible study group said there is a straight path we can follow according to God’s plan. But we veer off track doing what we want to do and get distracted. If we just could trust and obey God, we’d stay on track and get the job done so much easier and faster. “The reason why many are still troubled, still seeking, still making little forward progress is because they haven’t yet come to the end of themselves. We’re still trying to give orders, and interfering with God’s work within us.” – A.W. Tozer
  • BE A TEAM PLAYER: We all like pats on the back, and while I don’t like to be center stage, I won’t lie and say I don’t like compliments. However, God has taught me that my role in His plan can be small or big because ultimately, it’s not about me. It’s about fulfilling His plan. And even if my role is tiny, I need to fulfill it, to be a team player. My daily devotion said it well, “God isn’t interested in impressive human talent and natural ability. He’s looking for humble people who are totally depending upon Him and willing to make themselves available for whatever He calls them to do…If you’ll simply depend on Christ, make yourself available, and obey Him, He’ll use you for His glory.”
  • GROW IN FAITH: Following my spiritual calling has required me to trust God more, to be obedient, to be more patient, and to cry out for help when I’ve hit a wall. My faith has grown deeper, I have experienced many blessings and a closer relationship with Christ, and my daily life is so much fuller and purposeful as I try to live out my calling. I feel an urgency each day to make everything I do count towards furthering the kingdom of God.
  • WHY WE SHOULD FOLLOW OUR CALLING: Why bother figuring out what our calling is and following our spiritual calling? One day we will stand before Jesus and give an account of how we used our resources and gifts. 1 Corinthians 3:12-15 says, “If anyone builds on this foundation using gold, silver, costly stones, wood, hay or straw, their work will be shown for what it is, because the Day will bring it to light. It will be revealed with fire, and the fire will test the quality of each person’s work. If what has been built survives, the builder will receive a reward. If it is burned up, the builder will suffer loss but yet will be saved—even though only as one escaping through the flames.” These may sound like harsh words, but I know I want my life’s work to be meaningful and reveal something more than straw, hay or wood.

Will you be ready when God calls you?
I’m going to end this post with one of my favorite songs that I love listening to lately. It’s Chris Tomlin singing Good Good Father, especially the part

“As you call me deeper still
As you call me deeper still
As you call me deeper still
Into love, love, love”

The post Finding and Following Your Spiritual Calling appeared first on Jeanette's Healthy Living.

]]>
http://jeanetteshealthyliving.com/finding-and-following-your-spiritual-calling/feed/ 0