Sunday, March 30, 2014

Taking Care of Yourself is Not Optional

Take Care of Yourself

Taking care of yourself is important, really important. You can only give from what you have. If you are trying to serve others and fulfill your God-given purpose on little sleep, little energy, and a whole lot of stress, you probably aren’t doing a great job. Things could be better.

You have to commit to take care of yourself.

Sometimes we think of taking care of ourselves as selfish, and even something for which we don’t really have time. However, a certain amount of self-awareness and care is proper and good.

When we don’t take care of ourselves we are stressed, heavy-laden, confused, frustrated, easily angered, and more!

You have to realize that it really is not an option for you to NOT take care of yourself. People are depending upon you, and I am sure you want to give life all that you can.

Are you ready to make a commitment to yourself?

Are you ready to make changes in life that help you take care of yourself?

You may have to:

  • Make a fresh commitment to read your Bible and meet with God daily
  • Spend less time on social media and recreational items
  • Spend more time alone, in quiet
  • Create an exercise plan
  • Change your food habits
  • Go to bed and/or wake up earlier
  • Spend money on vitamins
  • Refine your thought patterns
  • Change your friend circles
  • Alter your schedule

There are many things you may need to consider when thinking about taking care of yourself. Think about your most-pressing needs and prioritize.

Take care of yourself isn’t always easy. It may require sacrifice and diligence, but it is worth it!

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Crunchy Bacon and Romaine Salad with Vinaigrette

Crunchy Bacon and Romaine Salad with Vinaigrette

I made this for my lunch yesterday. “Yum!”

This salad was inspired by a recipe I found at “The Peaceful Mom” recently.

Crunchy Bacon and Romaine Salad with Vinaigrette
Printable Version

Romaine lettuce (can mix with other salad greens as well)
Dried cranberries
Chopped almonds
Turkey bacon, cooked, about 2 slices per person

Dressing: (for one person)

1 1/2 teaspoons olive oil
1 1/2 teaspoons
balsamic vinegar
1 1/2 teaspoons orange juice
1/2 teaspoon brown sugar

Monday, March 24, 2014

A Good Marriage Starts in Your Mind

A good marriage

Everyone wants a good marriage.

There are lists of suggestions and books galore to encourage us in things we can *do* to gain better marriages.

However, I want to point out…

A good marriage really starts in your mind.

How do you think of your husband?
How are you thinking about him right now?

  • Is he your friend or foe?
  • Is he your teammate?
  • Do you see all of the *good* he does for you or are you focusing on the *bad* things?
  • Do you hold him in high esteem?
  • Would you do anything for him today?

Do you remember when you were dating your husband?

Those were the days when you wanted to spend as much time as you could with him.

Those were the days when you wrote him love letters, bought him gifts, and called him frequently.

Those were the days when you pursued him with your whole heart.

Those were the days when you forgave him easily and moved forward with a dream-filled heart.

How are you thinking about your husband today?

Your thoughts have the power
to make or break your marriage.

Refresh your vision for your marriage and renew your mind with regard to your husband.

Think of him as your lover, the one you desire.
Think of him as your best friend.
Think of him as the one with whom you want to be the most.
Think of him as your other half, the one who completes you.
Think of him as the most important person in the world.

Think great things, and then act upon those great thoughts.

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Meatless Goulash: An Easy, Filling Meal

Meatless Goulash

Typically, goulash is a meat-based meal. A friend gave me this recipe, which originally included meat, but I made it without meat, and it was just as good – maybe better.

Printable Version

1 small box elbow macaroni
3 cups cooked kidney beans, or 2 cans, drained
1 28 oz. can Italian tomatoes
1 family-size container condensed tomato soup
1 tsp. basil
1 tsp. oregano
1 tsp. parsley
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. pepper
dash of red pepper flakes

*You can brown 1 pound of ground beef with onion to add to the goulash, if you’d like.

Cook pasta, according to directions on package.

In a large pot, mix pasta with all other ingredients.

Simmer for 20-30 minutes to incorporate the flavors.

Serve with shredded cheese and sour cream.

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Eat, Drink, and Be Merry–Trusting God with Your Nutrition Choices

Nutrition Choices

The messages can be confusing.

Do we consume dairy or don’t we?
Should we eat meat or abstain?
Is it okay if I blend raw greens in my smoothie or am I adding toxins to my body?

The food world is constantly studying and surveying what’s out there and for good reason. We want to do what is best for our bodies and for our planet. However, if we follow everything we read, we will definitely end up feeling like we are violating one “law” or another because there is just too much conflicting information.

Here are just some of the areas where differs occur:

  • Coffee. Some people think we shouldn’t drink it, that it leeches valuable nutrients from our bodies and causes instability from the effects of caffeine. Others think we should drink it, that it obtains valuable antioxidants, helps our metabolism, and decreases the chances of certain diseases.
  • Meat. Some say meat is bad for you and that God never even really intended for us to eat it because Adam and Eve didn’t eat it in the garden. Others think it is a valuable source of protein and other nutrients and recognize that God gave it as a source of food.
  • Dairy. Some only eat dairy if they can buy it raw. Others feel safer buying pasteurized. Others feel they should buy organic, at least.
  • Sugar. There are a plethora of choices out there now, and everyone has his opinions about which is/are best. Some avoid sugar like the plague.
  • Oils. Take your pick – olive, coconut, butter, canola, soybean… There’s a lot on the market and a lot being said.
  • Raw food. Should we even cook our food? Some say “no”. Others say “yes”. Both use the same reasoning – it’s easier to digest and assimilate the nutrients.

Should we combine our foods?
How many meals should we eat?

And the list goes on…

Certainly, it can be confusing when you are trying to make health decisions for your family!

I encourage you with this:

Make decisions, as God leads you,
and eat with thanks, joyfully.

Trust that God is leading you the way you are supposed to be led and let others do the same. Follow your conscience, your health concerns, and specific issues that pertain to you and your family. Then, be thankful, and enjoy your food!

Don’t use your food choices as a religion, beating up others when they don’t eat like you do.

Don’t beat yourself up because you don’t eat like someone else.

Study. Pray. Eat.

Some Scripture verses to consider:

Romans 14:5-6
”Let each be fully convinced in his own mind . . . He who eats, eats to the Lord, for he gives thanks; and he who does not eat, to the Lord he does not eat, and gives God thanks.”

1 Timothy 4:1,3
”Now the Spirit expressly says that in latter times some will depart from the faith … commanding to abstain from foods which God created to be received with thanksgiving by those who believe and know the truth. For every creature of God is good and nothing is to be refused if it is received with thanksgiving.”

Ecclesiastes 8:15
”So I commended enjoyment, because a man has nothing better under the sun than to eat, drink, and be merry; for this will remain with him in his labor all the days of his life which God gives him under the sun.”