October 27, 2010

What's a Food CO-OP?

If you're looking for more fresh fruits and vegetables in your diet but don't want to spend a fortune on produce, you may want to consider participating in a Food Co-op.  BOUNTIFUL BASKETS is the name of just one of many that are located in many States such as; Utah, Idaho, Arizona, Washington, etc.  To become part of one, all you do is visit their website at http://www.bountifulbaskets.org/  to reserve and pay for your basket online.  Then on Saturday, you'd pick up your produce at one of the offered sites located throughout your State.  So, for about $40-50 of fresh fruit and veggies you're only paying $15 plus $1.50 handling fee!!!  The thing you need to remember is that these Co-op's are run by volunteers so you'll need to volunteer every so often because that's how we get such a GREAT deal!  Try it a few times and I'm sure you'll not be disappointed! 
ORGANIC baskets are available at certain locations at certain times as well.  I try to get organic vegetables and fruits whenever  possible because they aren't full of pesticides and other toxic chemicals that are injested and put a greater tax on your liver over time.  So, you may want to try going more organic whenever possible!

What are the benefits of a CLEANSE???

  • SLIM  Loose weight
  • CLEANSE  Clean out old, built up lining and toxins that have hardened inside the intestinal wall.  It is said that some people have POUNDS of built-up "mucoid plaque" in their colon.  The surface area of the intestines with all their folds and crevices is said to be equal to the size of a tennis court!  Nutrients can now be absorbed through the wall into the bloodstream and carried to all the cells throughout your body, whereas before, much of the vitamins and minerals were wasted because they couldn't be absorbed through all that JUNK!  Toxins can now be easily absorbed into the intestine through the wall so they won't be recirculated through the bloodstream and cells.  Green vegetables cleanse the bloodstream which helps clean every organ in your body!
  • HEAL  Now that your body is cleaned out, keep eating right and your body will heal itself from any and all illnesses.  It can often take a long time to heal, but keep eating very well and your body will thank you over time!
  • ENERGIZE  Raw vegetables and juices give lots of energy.  Being rid of toxins gives more energy, and allows you to absorb the energizing nutrients from all the healthy foods you eat.
  • CUT CRAVINGS  As a result of absorbing much more nutrition than before, you may not crave junk food or overeat regular foods, therefore easily maintaining a healthy weight!  I have been eating healthier for about 5 years now and this is SO true...you've gotta try it!!!
  • PRETTIER SKIN  Skin becomes more clear and wrinkles seem to firm up in the face!
  • BETTER BLOOD SUGAR   Blood sugar is more stabilized. 
  • GAIN CONFIDENCE & SELF DISCIPLINE  After cleansing and watching what I eat, I did notice that I was a happier person, not so impatient with my kids and people in general and I realized what is most important in life!
  • RELEASE EMOTIONAL BAGGAGE  There is a growing school of thought that people store emotions in different parts of the body, and the intestines can store a lot of old emotions.  Therefore releasing old baggage can also stir up and bring to the surface old emotional baggage that you may not have even been aware was inside you. 
  • ESTABLISH BETTER EATING HABITS  After cleansing out all the old junk and feeling so energized, clean and healthy, you have a greater desire to be more careful to fuel your body with energizing, health-promoting foods, and leave the JUNK behind!
  • EASIER EXERCISE   With less toxins, fat and pounds in your system, exercise is now easier and more fun!  Joints aren't as taxed like they were before, and arthritis may clear up from getting rid of the toxins in the joints.  It is also more fun to wear shorts and swim suits to exercise now that you are slimmer, firmer and trimmer!

Great Recipe for a Colon Cleanse... by: Jonell Francis

SPRINGTIME is the time to clean out your body...never do a cleanse in the winter...there is a time and a season for everything!

Exodus Cleanse Smoothie
1 cup Psyllium Husk powder
1 cup Apple Fiber
1/2 cup Bentonite, Orsa, or Green Clay powder
3 T Senna Leaf powder
2 T Cinnamon
2 tsp Ginger

You can find most if not all of these ingredients at any health food store (Good Earth is a great source).

Combine and store at room temperature.  The fiber and clay work together to absorb and peel off the hardened mucous matter off the intestinal wall.  Within 48 hours of the first day of the clense, you will get "the rope" either in one piece or in smaller pieces expelled from your body.  This is a victory and is well worth celebrating...YEAH!!!

DAY 1 Cleanse Smoothies-
Mix: 1-2 Tablespoons of the Exodus cleanse smoothie mixture with 1 cup of water and 2 Tablespoons frozen juice concentrate.  Stir and drink immediately before it thickens. 

* THE NIGHT BEFORE right before bed, drink 1 Exodus Cleanse smoothie.  Refill the glass several times to drink the residue and plenty of water. 
* DRINK A CLEANSE SMOOTHIE three times during the day.  Drink pure filtered water after and in between all day long. 
* HUNGRY?  If you still feel hungry, drink fresh vegetable juices or eat a little raw veggies.
* PM SPA TIME- Just before bed, drink a 1/4 cup of wheat grass juice (keep 1/4 juice for an enema)
Do an enema with warm water and a few cayenne granules or a little lemon juice.  Hold it long enough to massage your stomach to loosen things up inside before expelling (3-5 minutes if you can).
Then do an enema with 1/4 cup of wheat grass juice and hot water.  Hold it for 5-20 minutes or as long as you can.  Then take a nice hot bath! 

DAYS 2,3, 4 Juice Cleansing

* AM SPA TIME (same as Day 1)
* AM JUICING-  Make 2 quarts of sweet juice (5 lb. bag of organic carrots, 1 apple, 4 celery, or whatever you want to add).  Run the pulp through 4x adding a little water to make 2 quarts.  (This will probably last 1-2 days.)
Make 1 cup of green drink: a combination the sweet juice and green vegetables such as spinach, swiss chard, beet greens, a clove of garlic if you wish, etc.
* ALL DAY Whenever you are thirsty, drink a glass of sweet juice.  Drink water in between.  Hot Herbal Teas are also GREAT during a juice fast: chamomile, alfalfa, dandelion, red clover, echinacea, etc. 
* HUNGRY? Eat raw veggies if you wish, yet your body will cleanse a lot better with just juices.
* PM SPA TIME (same as DAY 1)

DAYS 5, 6 Work back into cooked food 
Drink vegetable juices twice a day. 
Eat more raw than cooked foods, including a salad for lunch.  Make sure you use a healthy cold-pressed olive oil organic dressing.  The extra virgin olive oil will help keep your system lubricated during the cleanse. 

IMPORTANT NOTES:  I do this cleanse, but I only do DAY 1, 2, and 3.  Then I work back into cooked foods on the 4th day.  Do whatever you can, but if you are bordering on obesity, I HIGHLY recommend you do it the whole 6 days to thoroughly CLEAN out your colon!  You may need some help from your husband or a friend for some motivational support because it isn't very fun, but SO rewarding in the end when you completely clean out your colon.  I also recommend you clean out your gallbladder and liver soon after so your body can flush out all the toxins your liver has had stored. 
DID YOU KNOW?  Your LIVER is the major FAT-BURNING organ in your body and if it is overtaxed with toxins, you will not be able to loose fat no matter how hard you exercise and no matter how healthy you are eating.  This is why I highly recommend you cleanse your body and then keep it as clean as possible by eating right and exercizing!  Please post any comments on how this cleanse worked for YOU!!!

October 12, 2010

Ladies Goodreads: Tuesdays With Morrie

Mitch Albom

Goodreads rating: 3.87 of 5
Mitch Albom rediscovered Morrie Schwartz, his college professor from nearly 20 years ago, in the last months of the older man's life. Knowing he was dying, Morrie visited Mitch in his study every Tuesday, just as they used to back in college. Their rekindled relationship turned into one final "class": lessons in how to live.

What are your thoughts and feelings about this book?
Is there someone you can rediscover and learn from?

Goodreads 2010-2011 List

The Ladies Goodreads

Tuesdays With Morrie
Mitch Albom

The Poisonwood Bible
Barbara Kingsolver

Christmas Jars
Jason F. Wright

Sandstorm (1st in series)
James Rollins

A Tree Grows In Brooklyn
Betty Smith

Blink: The Power of Thinking Without Thinking
Malcolm Gladwell

Blue Bottle Club
Penelope J Stokes

Till We Have Faces
C.S. Lewis

The Prize Winner of Defiance Ohio
Terry Ryan

The Book Thief
Markus Zusak

or a shorter read...

The Boy in the Striped Pajamas
John Boyne

The Killer Angels
Michael Shaara

Lizzy Bright and the Buckminster Boy
Gary Schmidt

The Help
Kathryn Stockett

The Undaunted
Gerald N. Lund

A Christmas Carol
Charles Dickens

Wholesome Baby Food

I found this cool website that teaches you all about what to feed your baby and when, and how to make your own baby food. And it's all wholesome! It's better than going out and buying a book (except you need to see the computer/recipe if you make some of the stuff).

For starting to Feed my 6 month old boy, I've been making large batches of food and freezing them in ice cube trays, then popping them out and putting into large bags that I mark with the month and year. They should last just fine for 3-6 months no problem. I did mashed bananas that I got discounted at the store because they were already ripe. I also baked our pumpkin I didn't carve from Halloween and then mashed that and froze in cubes. Not to mention steaming a bag of carrots and then mashing those (with a little water) and freezing them. IT's been great and a time saver in the long run.
When my baby is hungry I just grab a few ice cubes (each is about one ounce) and put them in a dish to microwave for 30 seconds. I have to make sure I stir well, so there aren't hot spots. But it's great for mixing foods too. I'll throw a banana cube in with two or three carrot cubes, un case he isn't use to the carrots. Or, I'll add some formula powder to the carrots instead...and thin out more with water if the consistency is too thick. Very versatile!
IF the cubes are a hassle, I've found avocado and banana to be super easy to just cut open and mash with a fork. But if you have time, steam some apples, pears, carrots, or sweet potatoes (I found a super sweet yummy hawaiian purple sweet potato that is delish!), and then mash with a fork. Super great! (I steam about 3 or 4 sweet potatoes for 30 minutes and then just turn off the stove and let them sit for awhile until I take them out. Then I just store them in the fridge for the week, whenever I want to pull one our and mash it).
Then, if you want to add even more, you can blend up some oats or rice and then cook in large quantities for the week. I grind a cup of oats and then add that into boiling water for about three minutes, adjusting consistency as I go. So, for breakfast I'll put a few spoonfuls of cooked ground oats with a banana cube, and now I'm starting to add in a strawberry. So fun.
Here's a recipe from that site I mentioned earlier, about homemade cereal. All you do is grind up brown rice (which is healthier than white) and mix it with water.
1/4 c. rice powder (brown rice ground in blender or food processor, or do the same with Oats)
1 cup water

1. Bring liquid to boil in saucepan. Add the rice powder while stirring constantly.
3. Simmer for 10 minutes, whisking constantly, mix in formula or breast milk and fruits if desired
3. Serve warm.
Now, this is if you even want to use rice cereal. Afterall, it's not a must. There are tons of people who think rice cereals are empty calories and just a way to get in the fortified iron, so they just start straight with veggies and fruits. (Which is why brown rice is a better alternative, but you shouldn't give it to the baby before 6 months, because it's not quite as easy to digest, compared to white.)
Another alternative is to use Quinoa, which is one of the least allergenic grains (actually not a grain, but grouped with them and full of protein and other nutrients).
There's also a group that believes in baby-led weaning, and they skip the pureed food and just start feeding their babies the appropriate foods which baby can feed himself (like banana or cooked/cooled mushy carrots, etc.). They believe that this helps the baby eat how much he wants, rather than the parents trying to get the baby to eat a specific amount at a specific time. Granted, they do say having an eating schedule is good, but they realize that it's a flexible time window where the baby has more time to feed himself until he's done. They also say that this helps the baby not worry about textures and such, since he never got use to only eating pureed textures.
I kind of like the idea, but I'm not sure how it'd work, so I'll need to try it sometime...We'll see. It's make cooking easier, but the clean up may be horrendous. Hmm...
Also, I have a dehydrator and the booklet suggests dehydrating bananas and apples and carrots, etc. You can do them in sticks, so baby can chew on them, or in pieces which you can then reconstitute later with warm water and then you have instant puree without losing nutrients or having to boil the foods. Fun idea to easy have stuff on hand and not having to go to the hassle of freezing ice cubes of your homemade purees, which is also an excellent option.

Exercise Basics

Physical activity simply means movement of the body that uses energy. For health benefits, physical activity should be moderate or vigorous and add up to at least 30 minutes a day.

Exercise can be broken into three areas:

•Aerobic activities – speeds heart rate and breathing and improves heart and lung fitness. Examples are brisk walking, jogging, and swimming.

•Resistance, strength building, and weight-bearing activities – helps build and maintain bones and muscles by working them against gravity. Examples are carrying a child, lifting weights, and walking. They help to build and maintain muscles and bones.

•Balance and stretching activities – enhances physical stability and flexibility, which reduces risk of injuries. Examples are gentle stretching, dancing, yoga, martial arts, and t’ai chi.

Here are some ideas. Pick a few and make a goal to start.(http://www.mypyramid.gov/)

Moderate physical activities include: •Walking briskly (about 3 ½ miles per hour)


•Gardening/yard work


•Golf (walking and carrying clubs)

•Bicycling (less than 10 miles per hour)

•Weight training (general light workout)

Vigorous physical activities include: •Running/jogging (5 miles per hour)

•Bicycling (more than 10 miles per hour)

•Swimming (freestyle laps)


•Walking very fast (4 ½ miles per hour)

•Heavy yard work, such as chopping wood

•Weight lifting (vigorous effort)

•Basketball (competitive)

October 5, 2010

What and Where is a Co-op?

Co-ops are Co-operatives, where people pool together their resources to provide for a need.
There are lots of types of co-op and they are normally not-for-profits that just want to bring a service or goods to people, or bring people together.

I've done a search of Utah Co-ops to see what's available around here. I've only tried a few:
1. www.BountifulBaskets.org (available in cities all over parts of the West, check the location: AZ, ID, UT, WY, etc.)
Various assorted semi-local Produce Baskets you order the week before(and a few other food items, including organic option) and then pick up at a designated location.

2. www.utahcoop.org (4892 S. Commerce Dr (300 W) and only open Th, F, Sat for limited hours)
Discounted food/essentials store- They get good deals from grocers for cheaper food and they don't re-sell for a high profit like most grocers. Their cheese is normally only $1-3! Which is awesome. and they have various options depending on the week. But, it is hit and miss, so don't go expecting amazing things all the time.(It's like shopping at the thrift store D.I., sometimes you find hidden treasures, but it's not always the same stuff). They do sell bulk diapers for cheap, if you're doing disposables.

This is an educational-type of co-op. You can sign up for free newsletters which connect you with helpful info on educational classes they offer on gardening, food storage, finances, etc. They generally do a class here and there about 4 times a month at one or two downtown SLC locations. But their website has some helpful info right on it. I found a pdf document of an S.O.S.(Sauce or Soup) recipe and a list of meals you can use this with (it's a pre-prepared flavoring packet you create)--great for food storage I think..I haven't tried it yet. (http://extension.usu.edu/files/publications/publication/FNP_101.pdf)

Feel free too try them and post comments on what you've tried.

Here's a list of others I haven't tried:
1. https://www.foodco-op.net
The Community Food Co-op of Utah: Crossroads Urban CenterA self-sustaining food purchasing network along the Wasatch Front that brings people together for food, savings, and community.

2. www.crossroads-u-c.org
Goal is to provide the best quality locally-grown and supported food for the best price (generally 30-50% grocery price. You order a basket of food for about $20 and then pick it up at a designated location. They have meat baskets and such too. The only other requirement is that you do 2 hours of service a month (for anyone, anywhere, but for the co-op if at all possible). They aren't fully organic.

How to Find Online Shopping Deals

I've just become a fan of online shopping for new things. I can always find a cheaper deal online than local (granted, buying local is still important and great, but some bargains are worth shopping online for).

When shopping for something, I'll always "froogle"/google search and click the left option "shopping," this allows google to just bring up items for sell that match as results of the search.

I also do a search on Amazon.com to compare what they have. If you're a Mom, you can do amazon.com/mom and get free shipping for qualified orders for three months or something...plus more benefits if you want to read about them. Or just regular purchases on their site can be shipped for free if your total order of qualified amazon products is over $25.

The third place I check is walmart.com, which if you find what you want for the right price, has free site-to-store pickup. You just order it to the store and then pick it up inside the store at the back, pre-paid and everything. That's been nice.

I've realized that all the big stores/companies have websites with mailings and that if there's one store you love to shop at, you should sign up for the email list to a junk email account. Every once in awhile I'll check my junk email and find some great coupons for DownEast or Babies R Us or Lands End, etc....whatever store.

The other big thing to note is that when I order online from a big store, I try to always find something on sale, and with free shipping. I generally google coupon/promo codes for stores online so I get a deal. This has been so helpful for some things, less for others. A present I bought for Paul was from a site which normally cost more than a place like walmart or amazon, but a google search found this item discounted, and a promo code I found happened to save me 15% off the bill too, so I got two things for a savings of $6.50 for one and at least $11 for the other (off the lowest amazon price). Crazy good deal! Of course I had to pay shipping for this smaller site, but I still saved!

The one downside is that this effort takes time. IF you don't have time or patience to search for the best cost, or to wait for such deals, then this isn't for you.

There are also local coupons you can see. I know pinchingyourpennies.com has coupons and such. And Smiths has their coupons online too....I'm not as much of a coupon person, so I can't tell you too much about that, but feel free to google coupon places around your local area if that's up your alley.
I don't normally love walmart, but occasionally I'll get something there if it's a steal of a deal.