Belief, Faith, Family, Love, Mindset, Parenting, Reflections

This Is Too Hard

The past two weeks have been extra tough. The fatigue that plagued me for several years came back a couple of weeks ago and hasn’t relented until today. Just to give a little context, I was diagnosed with Hashimoto’s on August 1, 2018, which was exactly one month before my husband at the time texted me to let me know that essentially our marriage was done. In spite of that, I have been able to manage it without medication. However, yesterday was the first time, I have ever considered going on medication due to level of exhaustion that I have been feeling.

I don’t recall there being a specific event or activity that happened that would have thrown me off, or caused me to feel this down, but something did happen to remind me that I am not invincible and I shouldn’t expect to do it all. Which sounds completely insane to me, when I have to do it all, because there is no one else to do what I do. Or perhaps, I’m expecting more than I should. Perhaps, it should be simpler.

This is the trick about growth, sometimes when you make the decision to elevate your life, you sometimes have to tap into areas that you may not want to tap into. When I started working with my Business Leadership Coach, I knew that I would have to tackle mindset and vision, but to go to places that I had never prepared to visit has been harder than I thought it would be.

I believe that I am in the land of limiting beliefs and instead of confronting those beliefs, I have allowed my brain to use the avoidance key, so that I don’t have to tackle what I know to be true and that awareness has manifested itself in the physical of overwhelming fatigue.

An overwhelming fatigue that was finally helped by my taking a walk with my daughter this afternoon. While I chatting with her, I realized that in order for her to do the hard stuff, I have to model it for her. When my mind wants to give me the option of avoidance, I have to conscientiously say no, otherwise nothing changes and my daughter will not understand the meaning of sticking with it, even when you think that you can’t.

While I still have more mind clearing to do, I am keenly aware of the eyes that are watching me. While I may get worn from time to time, it’s okay to allow my children the opportunity to see that I am fallible and that I am still learning too. I am learning to walk closer to Jesus and to leave my burdens with him. I am building my confidence by adjusting my habits and my expectations. I am giving myself grace when I fall a bit short and I have accepted that breaks are necessary to prevent the overwhelm and burnout.

My journey has only just begun and I will arrive where I am meant to be at precisely the right time.

With grace,

AngelaChristine

Cooking, Family, Homestead, Lifestyle, Mindset

Soup! Because I Love You

I truly enjoy cooking! Not to the level of opening a restaurant or a cafe, but to the level that I want to cook the best food that I can for those that I love. Fortunately, it’s something that I get to do everyday for my most favorite people on this planet, my children. Today was no different.

Much like many other areas in the country at the moment, we experienced a bit of unusually cold weather, for northwest Georgia. The low this morning was about 27 degrees Fahrenheit with a few snow flurries. It was so cold that my sliding doors on my minivan would not open until it was sufficiently warmed up. I believe the high was a sunny but cold 33 or 34 degrees. Yikes!

With the temperature hovering so low, it only made sense that our dinner would be some type of soup. Let me just say that soup, is my love language. I could absolutely eat soup year round! But what I love around this time of the year is the memories of my childhood that come flooding back when I am in the kitchen. I reminisce on how good it felt to eat at my grandmothers’ tables. I can almost smell all the smells and the joy I felt to when I was in their kitchens.

Both of my grandmothers were wonderful cooks. My dad’s mother, was more of an Iron Chef type cook. That woman could make the most amazing meals and so to us it was always a treat to eat at her home because you knew, no matter what it was, it would be delicious!! My Nana (my mother’s mother) on the other hand was a bit more straight forward with her cooking, her one signature dish was fried chicken. But her hugs and conversation was what drew you in. It saddens me that my children, have never experienced those moments. Perhaps one day, when I become a grandmother, I’ll be able to create in my grandchildren’s lives abundant and colorful memories of love.

Tonight, in honor of serving and all things winter, I decided to make my version of a minestrone soup minus the pasta and beans. What emerged was a flavorful burst of summer squash, chicken sausage, chopped tomatoes and a mixture of herbs that not only make the soup taste delicious, but are also good for you as well. Think, any boost I can give to my immune system, I am in!

Summer Winter Soup

The one drawback here is that I am not good about writing things down, because I never really know what is going to come together when I start, but today was an exception. Here is what I used:

One pound of mild chicken sausage (gluten free) with casing removed. One medium yellow onion, five cloves of garlic (fresh), three sticks of celery, and three carrots peeled and chopped. I sautéed that mixture together in my Instant Pot and once cooked through, I started layering in the spices.

Two teaspoons dried oregano, one teaspoon of thyme, one teaspoon of garlic powder, one half teaspoon of dried rosemary, one teaspoon of dried basil and one teaspoon of dried parsley. I then added in a box of chopped tomatoes, a bag of frozen yellow squash and two fresh peeled and chopped zucchini followed by two boxes of chicken broth. Salt and pepper to taste! I then put on the lid and let it cook at pressure for about 20 minutes. It was a hit! And we still have plenty for lunch tomorrow.

If you find cooking challenging, start with soup. It’s probably the one meal that you can make that will turn out well, even when you don’t know what you’re doing. But more than that, you will create some lasting memories for the ones you love when you take the lid off that (instant) pot!

With love and soup!

AngelaChristine

Health Bites, Lifestyle

Health Bites to Start Your Day-Sauna

You have probably determined by now that I am huge fan of all things, health! Sure, I believe that allopathic medication has it’s place, but the system we refer to as healthcare, really is far from it. But that is another conversation for another day. These short segments are all about encouraging you to take responsibility for your health and wellness everyday. With a little bit of intention and knowledge, I believe most of us can achieve optimal health at any age.

When you hear the word, sauna it is very likely you envision those hot and steamy rooms that you sit in after an intense workout at the gym. Or perhaps you think of the saunas made popular by the Scandanavian countries of Europe. But what if I told you that saunas, particularly infrared saunas. have numerous health producing benefits. So much so, you’ll probably wonder why they are not more common across the United States. Finland is a country of 5.3 million people, yet they have 3.3 million saunas in use at any given time. That is almost one sauna per household! Let’s explore, why you should consider adding sauna to your routine.

  1. First, sauna is known for helping the body to detox. Because our bodies are overwhelmed by more toxins than ever, sitting in a sauna for 30 minutes or more per day or weekly, can assist the body in the detoxification process.
  2. Sitting in the sauna is an amazing stress reducer. In fact, it can be very helpful in switching your body from fight or flight to rest and digest.
  3. Did you know that sauna, can help balance hormones? Time in the sauna can lower, cortisol levels, which in turn balances other hormones, such as insulin, testosterone, thyroid and estrogen that may become imbalanced because cortisol is elevated.
  4. It may be beneficial in assisting with weight loss. Saunas can increase heart rate, much in the way the heart rate increases during a vigorous workout, while simultaneously lowering blood pressure and increasing metabolic rate!

These are just a few of the many benefits associated with this healthful practice.

If you’re wondering how to incorporate sauna in your daily or weekly routine, let me suggest a few options. There are quite a number of sauna companies on the market, but these are a couple of companies that I would highly recommend because they source clean materials to limit toxin exposure: http://www.sunlighten.com and http://www.heavenlyheatsaunas.com. Both companies will work with you to help you select the unit that is right for you based on your space and budget. Or if you’re like me and space and cost are an issue, then there is an alternative, infrared sauna blanket. I actually purchased an infrared sauna blanket, with the idea that it would help my son with detox. Unfortunately, he wasn’t a fan, so it has now become my almost nightly ritual to spend 30-40 minutes in this blanket before I shower and go to bed. I’d say the results are pretty comparable, to a full size sauna at a fraction of the price, don’t quote me on that. This is the one that I purchased, http://www.sweatandglowsauna.com, but there are more jazzy versions on the market, if this one just isn’t your speed.

If sauna is not already a part of your routine, I hope that you’ll find a way to incorporate it into your healthy life!!

With joyful intention!

Angela