Tag Archives: simple living

Weekending

This past weekend started with dinner at Flat Rock Cafe with Bryan and his folks. I had the Hickory Salmon on a Flatrock Salad, which has blue cheese, glazed walnuts, dried cranberries and sliced granny smith apples. Yum!

Saturday started early. Bryan had Men’s Prayer Breakfast at church, and I had my friend Heather (of Wife Mom Runner) over for breakfast. We had Basil Omelet Cups and Organic Fruit Salad. I added spinach, mushrooms, and ground sausage to the eggs and used mozzarella instead of cheddar. They were delicious! The fruit salad was compliments of all the wonderful things from my Milk & Honey Organics baskets the last two weeks (orange segments, apple, pear, banana, and blueberries). Yum! And such a good time catching up with Heather!

We stayed up far too late on Friday night catching up on Hulu and talking, so after Bryan got home, we took a short nap before I got ready for my lunch interview. It’s not what you think. I actually interviewed Christine, the owner of Milk & Honey Organics.

Christine and I met at Everyday Organic at Cherrydale (one of my new favorites) and had a wonderful time. She had the chicken salad on wheat and I had the Cherrydale Turkey on wheat (turkey, lettuce, goat cheese, and sliced granny smith apples), each with the quinoa salad as our side dish. We split our sandwiches so we could taste both of them. We talked as if we had been friends for years. I can’t wait to share the interview with you! Stay tuned for that!

For dinner, we met up with our old Game Night group and had a fun time playing Poker, eating chili, drinking IBC root beer, and sharing lemon tarts (along with the age old inside jokes, of course)!

The funniest part about this is that she just cleaned her husband out, and he's still cheering.

I ended up making graham cracker crust crackers (basically, press graham cracker crust into muffin papers and bake at 350F for 5-7 minutes) and topped them with Ina Garten’s lemon curd (in which I used 2 lemons and 2 key limes instead of 3 lemons) and some pomegranate arils. Yum! The first attempt, I filled the lemon curd into the muffin papers, but it never set (even when I tried freezing it), so we tried just a teaspoon on each graham cracker crust cookie, and it worked great. Picture below:

Sunday was a great day of services. Sunday morning, Pastor spoke on Romans 14 and dealing with differences among fellow Christians graciously. In our Sunday School class, we had a couple give a testimony of their experiences making difficult decisions (which included a long distance engagement, living in China, getting pregnant in the first few months of their marriage, having a child with only half a heart, doing a short term mission to Indonesia, getting pregnant again, and traveling on deputation to return to Indonesia). It was a wonderful, transparent time that really helped me see that we’re not the only couple going through life changing decisions and challenges.

Sunday lunch was garlic-y sauteed greens and roasted yams and yukons (golden potatoes, that is)! We haven’t consciously made a choice to become vegetarians or anything like that, but due to current budget constraints, it just happens in about 75% of our meals right now. The cool part is, we both love fruits and vegetables, and it’s fun experimenting with putting different ones together. And when we do splurge for meat, it doesn’t feel quite so bad to spend the money on all-natural and organic options because it’s more of a treat than a necessity.

Sunday night, we were privileged to watch the premiere showing of the fourth Dispatches from the Front DVD, a glimpse into God’s Kingdom in India. It was inspiring and beautiful! God really is working all over the world, and His purposes are so much bigger than I can understand. It’s like I’m looking up, asking “Why?” and only being able to see the underside of a tapestry. Meanwhile, God is looking down and seeing the beautiful artistry of all those strings woven together into a perfect picture! And I have to choose to stop trying to figure out the strings on the underside and just trust the Artist!

Finally, I want to share a blog I recently came across.

This blog is put together by a Christian couple, living a simple life. It’s called Frugal Granola, and I can’t stop reading it! Check it out. They’ve got great recipes, crafts, devotionals, etc., but the Simple Living section is my favorite. It’s like reading a beautiful novel. It’s about making difficult choices to follow the dream of a simple life, the challenges of miscarriage and adoption, the joys of being a stay-at-home mom, and the journey of their marriage. I hope you enjoy it as much as I do.

I’ve been learning so much recently, but I’m having a hard time putting it into words. God is stretching me and reinforcing my heart’s desires and teaching me to trust Him by trusting my husband, and so many other things. Just know my heart is full. God is so good and I am truly overwhelmed by that instead of my circumstances right now. Have a great week! It’s a busy week, but I’ll be back soon, so stay tuned!

~Melissa

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20 Reasons to Go Vegan from Bonnie of Going Home to Roost Blog

I’m not necessarily promoting going vegan as a philosophy or even as a diet, but there are some benefits to enjoying a vegetarian or vegan diet, at least on a regular basis, if not all the time. I found this Vegan Food Pyramid.

 

Vegan Food Pyramid

I came across an article on a blog I like to frequent. I found it interesting and thought you all might like to check it out. Here’s the article from Bonnie of Going Home to Roost:

“why would one choose to be vegan? one of my dear friends posed this exact question on facebook over the weekend, and it really got me thinking. most of you know that my husband and i have been a vegetarian for a long time, and often end up eating a vegan diet as well. their are many reasons why someone would go vegetarian, vegan or choose to eat only local & organic products, but today i want to specifically discuss the reasons why someone would choose to ‘go vegan’.

1. live longer. studies show that on average vegetarians and vegans live 6 years longer than meat eaters.
2. land consumption. 20 vegans can live off the same amount of land required by one meat eater.
3. water consumption. it takes 25 gallons of water to produce 1lb of wheat & 2500 gallons to produce 1lb of meat.
4. toxins. meat contains antibiotics, hormones & toxins produced by stress & pesticide residues that become concentrated from all the crops they have eaten.
5. food poison. 80% of food poisoning is due to infected meat.
6. heart disease. vegetarians have 24% reduced risk of getting heart disease & vegans a 57% reduction.
7. protein. the average american eats twice as much protein as necessary for a healthy diet and much of that is from red meat. getting protein from beans and grains is much healthier and reduces the risk for osteoporosis.
8. hormones. eating animals that have been given hormones to speed growth (a common practice in the meat industry) means those hormones go into your body. not only can this disrupt the natural balance of your hormones, but some of the hormones given to animals have shown to cause tumor growth in humans.
9. antibiotics. antibiotics are frequently given to feed animals, which can lead to bacterial resistance. many of the antibiotics used to treat human infections are also used in feed animals.
10. weight loss. a healthy weight loss is a typical result of a smart vegan diet. eating vegan eliminates most of the unhealthy foods that tend to cause weight issues. 33% percent of americans are obese, while only 2% of vegans are.
11. osteoporosis. bone health depends on a balance of neither too much or too little protein, adequate calcium intake, high potassium, and low sodium. with a healthy vegan diet, all four of these points set a perfect scenario for preventing osteoporosis.
12. puberty. since 1950, girls are hitting puberty on average 4-7 years earlier and boy’s sperm counts have decreased by 25-50% due to the hormones present in non-organic meat and dairy products.
13. alzheimers. meat eaters have double the rate of alzheimers disease as vegans & vegetarians.
14. ecosystems. nitrates & pesticides used on crops grown to feed livestock end up in our rivers and vastly effect the health of micro environments and ecosystems.
15. global warming. the 1,300,000,000 cattle in the world emit 60,000,000 tons of methane per year (methane is a greenhouse gas which leads to global warming).
16. animal cruelty. the animals involved in mass industry farming are exposed to the most cruel, unsanitary and horrific conditions. if you can handle watching it, the meet your meat‘ movie will give you a glance into the common practices of present day industry farming.
17. cancer. vegetarians & vegans have a 40% reduced level of cancer than the general population thought to be because they have a higher intake of vitamins A,C & E.
18. cholesterol. eliminating any food that comes from an animal and you will eliminate all dietary cholesterol from your diet (heart disease is the leading cause of death in america today).
19. rain forests. if they continue to clear american forests to raise cattle at the present rate, in 50 years there will be none left.
20. energy. when following a healthy vegan diet, you will find your energy is much higher.

“so many people get hung up on the idea that eating vegan or vegetarian is just too difficult. or they may find themselves emotionally attached to just how tasty meat can be. what they often don’t know, is that it is ever increasingly easy to eat a vegan/vegetarian diet, and enjoy much of the same things you do now. with meat substitutes, you can enjoy healthy vegan bacon, burgers and even barbecue! it’s a great way to ease into the lifestyle. today, even eating out is no problem. with most american restaurants offering vegan friendly dishes, you can also head to a mexican, thai, chinese, or indian restaurant for a sure bet of vegan/vegetarian options.

“what do you think? is it worth the health of your body and your planet to skip the meat? i think i could have stopped after reason #1 and been convinced, but i would love to know what you think. i’ll meet you in the comments section!”

I’d love to hear what you think of this article. Also, don’t forget to go over to Going Home to Roost and let them know what you think too. Thanks for reading!

A Young Couple Finds Freedom in Simple Living

Check out this interview of a couple (Logan Smith and Tammy Strobel) who sold their house, cars, and TV to live a simple, debt-free life. Follow Tammy on her blog at www.rowdykittens.com. I’m not saying we’ll go this far (I’d have to research the Peak Oil thing), but I admire them and their journey.