• April 30, 2014

    Guacamole

    You know what I hate?

    When my computer is still broken.

    Yup.

    So, there’s that.  That means no pictures for you.  And no desktop for me.  I have been assured that there is a solution, though.  We just need to find it.  And afford it.  When that happens, I’ll add some pictures.

    But for now, I think it’s time to get down to business.  Business, today, means the best guacamole you will ever put in your mouth.

    Guacamole

    By Erin Published: April 30, 2014

      You know what I hate? When my computer is still broken. Yup. So, there’s that.  That means no pictures for you.  And no …

      Ingredients

      Instructions

      1. IngredientsGather Ingredients.
      2. MixCombine ingredients with a mixer until mostly smooth.
      3. DoneServe with tortilla chips or as a special addition to your favorite Mexican dish.

      *ta-da* 

      How easy was that?!  I don’t like my guacamole too smooth, so I leave some good lumps in it.  You, however, can do whatever makes you happy.  See?  So easy!

      Another great thing about this guacamole?  Avocados were at the top of the Clean 15 this year!  For those of us who try to eat organically but can’t always afford an organic grocery bill, the Dirty Dozen and Clean 15 lists are a super helpful guide to help you decide what you should spring for in the organic isles and what you can get away with from the non-organic produce.

      So, there you have it.  Eating fresh, delicious snacks doesn’t have to be difficult or time consuming.  And if you really wanted to make it healthy, swap out the cream cheese for Greek yogurt.  It won’t be quite as thick, but it will still be delicious!

    • April 23, 2014

      It’s Actually Pretty Easy Being Green

      Happy Earth Day!  I know I’m a day late, but that’s what happens when updates are only on Wednesdays.

      The more I think about it, though, every day should be Earth Day.  Not that grade schools should have “dirt” snacks with gummy worms on a daily basis (although, there are plenty of kids who would disagree with me), but that people should take care of the only planet they can (currently) live on.  I know there is talk of manned missions to Mars and planets that are super similar to Earth and all of that… but the money and manpower needed to reach and successfully inhabit another planet is too ridiculous for me to think about right now.  Also, what if I don’t want to move to Mars just because people ruined my planet?  Right?

      Right.

      But, there are more reasons to go green than just preserving the planet so I don’t have to move to Mars.  There are lots of people out there who disagree and think that making efforts to go green and live with less negative impact on the planet is a waste of time and effort.  They often think the only reason to go green is to prevent global warming, and that’s not even a thing they believe in anyway, so why should they change the way they live their lives?  Well, to them, I would first ask that we watch a video:

      Oh, Hank, you are so smart.  And if you still think Global Warming is bunk… whatever.  I’m not going to argue with you about it anymore.  There are still plenty of great reasons to green up your life!

      Going green will help you:

      • Save money
      • Save energy
      • Preserve non-renewable resources
      • Promote your health

       

      We’ve all heard the phrase “Reduce, Reuse, Recycle” before, but you may be thinking that it’s too hard or inconvenient to live a more sustainable life.  Do not fear!  There are so many little things you can do to help make your life a little greener and your planet a little better!

      A lot of the idea behind being green is to use and reuse the things you already have and to be conscious of the impact you and your lifestyle have on your environment.  Here is a list of some of my favorite, super easy ways to make your life a little greener:

      • Shop local and fair trade (Hello farmers market!  Delicious, beautiful, super fresh food grown at the farm just outside of town?  Sign me up!).
      • Turn old things you already have into things with new purpose and life.  An easy example would be to use old canning jars for food storage (been on Pinterest lately?  This is trendy right now!).
      • Use reusable shopping bags.
      • Plant something (vegetable gardens, flowers, indoor plants, a tree in the forest… whatever makes you happy).
      • Turn your lights off when you leave the room.
      • Turn the water off when you’re not actively using it.
      • Walk, ride a bike, or use public transit.
      • Don’t waste paper – print on both sides or use the back of printed sheets you don’t need for scratch paper.
      • Use cloth instead of paper when you can – napkins, washcloths, etc.
      • Use homemade cleaners and laundry detergent.

       

      See?  Not hard at all!  And pretty soon, it all becomes second nature.  Plus, you’re saving tons of money, living healthier, and feeling pretty good about making the world a better place.

    • April 9, 2014

      Humility

      Mountain-Road

      I’ve been thinking a lot about humility lately.  Little reminders here and there seem to keep popping up in my life that I am not so great as I think I am.

      I tend to be super perfectionistic about the things I do, so it’s really hard to accept when I’ve made a mistake or when I haven’t done something to the best of my ability.  I also tend to notice and dwell on the mistakes I’ve made longer than necessary.  This kind of mindset lends itself to a lot of prideful thinking and, on the other side of the coin, a lot of self-deprecating thought.

      No matter how well things are going or how good I imagine myself to be, something will inevitably happen and I have to remember how very imperfect I actually am.

      As hard as it is when I fall off of the little pedestal I build for myself, I’m grateful when it happens.

      Maybe not so much in that moment… but eventually I find room for gratitude.

      Humbling events remind me to be patient and understanding of others when they make mistakes.  They remind me that I fall short, but it’s okay because my faith tells me that there is forgiveness for my shortcomings.  Suddenly I can focus on the bigger picture and what my life should really be about.

      With a humble mind, it is much easier to learn and to grow.  If a person spends too much time thinking that they know everything or that they don’t need help, how do new ways of understanding the world ever push through?  How much harder is it to ask for help when you really need it?  Or to admit you don’t know something?  And what happened when you really need help with something?

      Besides making people closed off to learning or gaining new understanding, a lack of humility can also be dangerous to a person’s self worth.  You see, so much of the pride people feel is rooted in being better than someone else.  I’m proud of my clean house – why? – Because my neighbor’s house isn’t so tidy.  I’m proud of the work I do – why? – Because my coworker is lazy.

      Humility challenges us to rework our thinking and be glad for the things we do well and to keep working on the things we don’t do well.  Who I am and what I do is no longer connected to other people and their behaviors; suddenly I am free to do what I do and feel good about it – or not – based solely on my own merit.

      Humility, I find, is something to be worked on and is often thrust on me at the most inopportune times.  It can be unpleasant and depressing, but those moments of imperfection can also be a chance to open my mind and grow.

      I hope you are humbled this week with an open mind and a ready heart.  And I hope you understand I mean that in the best possible way.