Travel food

I am driving 10 hours to California today to drop my boy off at college. Part of the drive is for my 16 year old to get hours in for his driving license so part of the drive is kind of stressful!

We are on a budget with food, so we packed snacks and stuff for sandwiches with zero fast food in the plans. We are eating celery sticks, baby carrots, hummus, guacamole, reduced fat triscuits, pickles, apples, oranges, orange juice and I brought my Sun Warrior protein powder. The boys are putting mayo, cheese and meat on their whole grain sandwiches and I had guacamole and some cheese on mine. As I work on getting back to eating Whole Foods Plant Based I won’t add the cheese. I also snacked on some valentine candy hearts and felt sick afterwards so it taught me a lesson. I have a sweet tooth that I am constantly fighting. When I go about a week with no sugar the cravings go away. I need to get back to that point again.

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1-15-16 Food Diary

I fasted till noon and had my shake.


A bit later I cut up carrots and cauliflower to snack on with the rest of the hummus I made the other day. My boys finished it off.


I wanted something sweet so I cut up an apple to share with my boys.


All went well until my family went to Dairy Delight, our local burger joint, to celebrate my son’s graduation from our home school complete with official diploma and transcripts.


We let each kid spend $10 on whatever they wanted and I did the same. I tried to make good choices by getting a salad with dressing on the side, a garden  burger(veggie burger), and a shake. It turned out that the salad was covered in cheese and the burger was covered in mayo. Once upon a time that would have been delicious but I am used to my low fat versions of these foods and these things just tasted like fat.


It was a good evening though. We ate at 6 and I stopped eating after that. We went home and played a non gambling version of 21.


For exercise I walked with my mom and puppy a mile and a half and then played fetch with the pup for a while.

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1/14/16 Food Diary

AAAAaaaarrrgghhh!!! Two weeks of Intermittent Fasting down the drain!

I’ve been doing so good. Every day I wait until noon to start eating, which does a ton of great things but I was waylay-ed by my sons homemade white bread, butter and jam. Ugh. I pay my 13 year old to bake our bread instead of paying the store for their processed stuff. That way he can help pay for his Taekwondo classes and we get fresh bread. I only buy the whole grain stuff from him, but he had a wild hair after researching new bread making techniques and wanted to try using bread flour which is *white* flour. Well, it is one of my triggers for overeating and I could not withstand the temptation yesterday morning when there was fluffy, white, gorgeous, usually only for special occasions, white bread.

Now I’m not sure if I am going to start over on my goal to make Intermittent Fasting a habit or start another one. I stick to one goal at a time so I can hyper-focus on it. I am fasting this morning and there is no more white bread so I should do just fine. Maybe it is already a habit to fast in the morning. I hope so. The benefits reported from it are fat burning, cell regeneration and cleansing, brain cells are made, and so many great things.   This is an infographic from Dr. Mercola about it. I follow the schedule at the bottom of the page pretty closely. I just saw that he recommends a 6 hour eating window instead of the 8 that I follow. I’ll have to study that out a bit and see if it’s something I want to do. I don’t agree with the omitting of whole grains though. I know better than that.

Now for yesterdays food: It’s not pretty.

10 am   3 thick slices of home made white bread, butter, home made grape jelly (this wouldn’t have been so bad if it had been within my eating window.)

I taught music lessons the rest of the day so I couldn’t eat again until 6:30. If I hadn’t eaten the bread I would have made a smoothie at noon.

6:30 big bowl of Vegetable Soup and animal crackers

7:30 I went to a church gathering and tried 2 home made doughnut holes and 1 cookie.

Today I am off to a good start and as I write this I realize that Intermittent Fasting is a habit for me now. I will continue on and start on my 28 day challenge so I can win my medal for a new habit I’ve made. (more on that later 🙂


Mom and I did the basic 15 minute TTAPP video, then Jon Gabriel’s HIIT program. I did jumprope for the cardio part of it. I am a bit sore today which means I did a good job 😉

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Food Diary 1-13-15

I am focusing on one goal a month. This month my goal is keeping my eating window at 8 hours. I start eating a noon and end at 8. I started doing this more than a year ago but was not 100% consistent so I am working on it. You can read more about the benefits of Intermittent Fasting and find out why I think it is awesome. When I took my course through the School of Natural Healing I learned about how the body digests and assimilates food and  I was taught that eating nothing, or just fruit until noon is optimal. That was years ago and now scientists are catching on to it. Interesting how that happens.

I started this blog in 2010 by journaling what I was eating. I have decided to continue on with that for a while. It will help me to keep honest in walking the walk that I teach and maybe it will give you some ideas on how to get more whole foods into your diet too!

  • Noon: my daily protein shake after exercising It has 1 cup water, 1/2 cup mixed berries, 1 T. flax, 1 T. hemp seed, 1/2 teaspoon Moringa powder, 1 scoop Amazing Grass greens, and 1 scoop Sun Warrior blend protein powder. I blend it in my Magic Bullet.
  • Today’s raw veggies were cucumbers and carrots. I made hummus to dip them in. The recipe was 1 undrained can of chickpeas, 1/4 cup tahini, 2 Tablespoons olive oil, the juice from 1 lemon, 1 teaspoon salt and a small garlic clove. I tossed it all in the food processor. It is a bit runny because of not draining the chickpeas which means it mixes well and dips well. I think I’ll make it thicker next time.
  • Dinner was Veggie Pot Pie with whole grain bisquit topping. Yum. I also cooked up some frozen peas and broccoli with some onion and a bit of butter.

That’s it for today. Actually, maybe I should log what exercise I am doing too. Today was an off day for exercise. I take Wednesday and Sunday off but I did work on my planking goal and did 30 seconds. I also did the Tabata method of High Intensity Interval Training with my Hula Hoop ! 🙂 Fun.

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Long 'Ol Green bean


I forgot I had planted a variety of green bean that gets extra long until my boy brought this bad boy in to show us. When he ran up to me with it my first reaction was that it was a snake! So glad it wasnt….I’m terribly afraid of snakes :/ It seems like we’ll only need a couple of beans per person to have a filling dinner!

We’ve been enjoying beans out of the garden for several weeks now. I cook them in a couple of different ways.

1. Snap off the ends and break into small peices, then put in a pot with a couple of inches of water. Cover the pot and let the beans boil/steam until tender. Drain the water off and add salt or a seasoned salt. If you are a butter eater that would be good too. (We’ve moved away from animal products so we leave it out.)

2.  Prepare the beans the same as above but cover them with broth and boil them until soft. Then add seasonings and salt to taste. Mmm. So good.

My boy said this bean wasn’t very tasty raw like the others we grow, so we’ll cook ’em up and see how they taste then.  I love experimenting with growing different varieties of foods. You never know if you’ll find something you love.

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Strawberry Guac. Salad at a soccer game


Oh man. So good. I am loving this salad!

The boys and I are in Park City for a soccer tournament so I had to think ahead of time to keep our meals healthy and cheap.

I brought split pea soup in the thermal cooker so it was nice and hot by 2pm. I also brought bowls and spoons to eat it with.

I did not have the salad fixings for lunch so we stopped at the store to get those. We chose romaine and baby spring greens, strawberries, guacamole, sunflower seeds and pre chopped red onion. This salad doesn’t need dressing with all of its awesome flavors!

My salad is waiting for me, and the second soccer game for today. Yum and Score!

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Tent Camping in January

I guess we like adventure or this new idea turned experience wouldn’t have happened. Some people don’t honestly understand us:) ha ha


It’s not that we want to be cold or do hard things, but you see, we got new sleeping bags for Christmas and just HAD to try them out! 🙂 We are trying to get our 72 hour kits in order. It is easier to find out what we need in them now than when it’s too late.

Wait till you hear the good part. It wasn’t just my husband, my 5 boys and I, but it was Grandma and Grandpa too! I was so proud of them. They haven’t grown old and boring one bit.


We got some great Wiggys bags that are supposed to keep you warm even when they are wet because of their lamilite insulation. We stayed warm except for wherever our bodies touched the frozen ground. Inside the bag was toasty warm though. We are now looking into sleeping mats that have great insulation. The tarp and wool blanket I was on was not enough. The tents are cool. They come in halves from the army surplus store. Each of us puts half in our 72 hour kit and then 2 of them snap together to make one floorless tent.

Ben, my 16 year old didn’t want to sleep in one of the army tents and slept out under the stars instead. He doesn’t have one of the great bags yet and he was cold but he stayed out anyway.

This craziness of sleeping out in the winter isn’t new to us. When I was 17 I lived in a tent in my parents backyard from November to January. It was quite the experience and something I draw strength from even now. If I could do hard things then, I can do them now too.

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Better Dutch Oven Bread


Well, the bread didn’t burn this time:) Brian is learning and improving this fun new interest. The dough he used was frozen from last week and he had some issues with defrosting it, rising it and transferring risen dough to his Dutch oven. Next time he will either make fresh dough or do the defrosting and rising right in the Dutch oven after freezing.
To make this bread not burn Brian made a sort of spit to hang the oven from. The bottom of the bread still got cooked faster than the top but it kept a better over all tempurature.


He cut a wedge shape into the standing post and cut the horizontal post into a wedge shape at one end. He pounded them together and made a spit that can’t come apart. It’s really cool.



The boys got going on projects while Dad worked on his.


Tyler worked on a spit of his own.


Nobody knows what Luke is up to but his stabilizer is ingenious:)


Jos stick sharpening skills are coming along.

Next time Brian wants to make perfect biscuits. I’m looking forward to it!

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Elisa’s Story and her Whole Foods Binder System 2nd Edition

I recently finished editing my Whole Foods Binder System with a friend of mine and I wanted to kind of announce it but not make a big deal of it, you know? I want my work to benefit people but I don’t want to oversell what I have to offer either. It is my hope that the things I have learned will benefit others and this is the way I know how to share. Below I have written a short biography of a teeny tiny part of my health history. It is by no means comprehensive but it does give you a glimpse into my passion for all things HEALTH. May God bless you in your efforts to take care of your body.  Sincerely, Elisa

My Story

I have always been conscious of my health. When I was in high school, I would run either outside on the track or inside around the perimeter of the gym during my lunchtime. When I was home I would do 45 minutes on my rowing machine and take long walks in the desert behind my house.

I watched what I ate very carefully. In those days what I thought was healthy was just eating less food than I wanted. I didn’t eat lunch at school, I just ran. I loved Bit O’ Honey and other candy and my family was always baking bread, cookies, and cakes.

When I got married I took my role as Wife very seriously and made sure we had well rounded meals. At that time I used a lot of packaged foods and I gained weight. I kept up the running and exercising, and I tried to eat healthy but I just didn’t have any real knowledge of what was truly healthy.

I had a baby 3 years after I was married and gained quite a bit of weight but was able to run much of it off afterwards, though it was a struggle. I had 2 more kids and followed the same routine of getting pregnant, getting really big, and running it off. We were still eating packaged foods but I started reading books about health and was beginning to learn more about eating healthy. Even back then I started a Be Healthy Group with neighborhood friends that met at the park, weighed, and talked about how we could be healthier. I learned some things I thought would be helpful to others, and started teaching them what I had learned. That was over 14 years ago and looking back I can see I was on the right track but I had much more to learn.

Fast forward to when I was pregnant with Josiah and didn’t know yet and I got walking pneumonia. It took a month to work through that and it marked the beginning of pneumonia or bronchitis every year with related asthma. Before Josiah was 2 he was admitted to the hospital with pneumonia as well. That was when I was learning about radically changing our diets and had been learning about herbal medicine and essential oils. I read book after book and taught everyone who would listen about what I was learning.

I became certified as a Home and Family Master Herbalist through the School Of Natural Healing in March of 2010 where I learned more in depth about nutrition from fruit, vegetables, grains, nuts and seeds. Since then I have studied countless books and studies that have supported the knowledge I gained through the certification process. I have taught that information to friends, family, the community, and people I don’t know on the internet.

It has now been over 4 years since I have had pneumonia or even a serious cold. When my kids were little they were constantly sick and had runny noses, but now it is very rare for us to get sick, and when we do it is mild. The difference is in the nutrition we are getting, preventative measures we take with essential oils and herbs, and living a lifestyle of eating things as close to their whole form as possible. If we can’t tell where the food came from when it was in its natural state then it probably should not go into our bodies.

I have always loved lists, making forms on excel, keeping track of information through spreadsheets, making schedules, and everything that has to do with being organized on paper. I have made many schedules for our dinner menus which included lists of dinners for the month with corresponding grocery lists, rotatable menus for the wall, and several recipe card systems. I have probably had a new system every year since I’ve been married (19 years).

My Whole Foods Binder System has evolved and it has taken hundreds of hours to fine tune. I was sitting at my kitchen table organizing my recipes into color coded food combinations when it hit me that other people would find value in this too! I got excited about it and talked to a group that had been learning about living a whole foods lifestyle but having trouble implementing all they have learned, and they got excited too!

I love simplicity, and had been putting effort into the binder to make it simple for me to carry out meal planning, shopping, and food combining. For others to use it and be comfortable, I realized that I would have to put more information in it so they could understand how the binder is set up. I have written a comprehensive section in the front of the binder so it will be easy for others to use. Now, I am excited to share my creation!

Go HERE to check it out and support me AND you in our health endeavors:)

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Dutch Oven Disaster


Saturday was a fun day of cooking. My husband and the boys were experimenting with cooking bread in the Dutch ovens and I was making refried beans, baked tortilla chips, water sautéed onions and peppers and also putting away our load of food from Bountiful Baskets.

I have found when I get our basket that if I do my chopping of vegetables the first day that cooking the rest of the week goes so much faster. I can just get out the bags of washed and cut produce to use however I need.


The bread that my husband made was a recipe that my Grandmother made growing up. She said she had to make bread every other day as a kid for her family who lived on a farm. This was my husband’s first attempt at making bread PLUS his first time cooking it outside in a Dutch Oven. It was a heroic effort though it yielded results not in keeping with his glorious visions of homemade bread for lunch:)


The bread turned out black on the outside but perfect on the inside!  He learned not to put the oven directly in the hot coals. Next time he will pull coals out of the fire to put on the top and bottom of the oven thus controlling the temps a bit better.

I am proud of his efforts and I know he will only get better from here. 🙂 Way to go bud!


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