Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Saw, Saw, Hammer, Hammer ..



As I was organizing pictures and videos on the computer tonight, I came across this video from earlier this summer!  Nate's parents taught Sophia this sweet song and she was prepared to sing it to us when we got home from a date!  So precious!!

video

Do you remember any children's songs that you learned while a kid?


Cheese!



This morning was school pictures!  I wanted to get a few for myself in case Sophia decided not to smile for the photographer!!

Our little girl is getting so big!

Excited to go to school!

On our way home from school, I tried to ask Sophia about her day, what she did, how they did school pictures ... Yes, basically 20 questions!  She looked at me as serious as ever and said, "Mom, I was just chillin' out waiting for my pictures! Actually, I was just chillin' out all day long at school!"

I have never heard her use those words before, and I had to keep from busting out laughing!  "Chillin' out!"  Wonder where she learned those from?  Probably school!  Ha!








Monday, September 24, 2012

Shoo Fly Shoo ...


Anyone else have a KILLER problem with fruit flies in their kitchen?  I am awaiting my shipment from Amazon for my fruit fly traps!  They can't come fast enough!

I was swatting at some flies near Jackson, and he thought it was hilarious!  He kept laughing and laughing!

See for yourself ...

video

Such a sweet boy!


Sunday, September 23, 2012

I like it to B-Sweet… Boresha's B-sweet REVIEW





I like it to B-Sweet

You all know my desire to eat healthy and provide health choices for my family.  But I have to admit, I love the taste of sweets, and if you are truthful, most people are that way.  With most Americans consuming over 150 lbs of sugar a year, I know I am not alone in my search for a healthy sweetener option.  I also have a family history of Diabetes, so I have extra reason to be cautious with sweets and sweeteners.

As I considered all the new and old sweeteners on the market that claim to have no calories, the choices were overwhelming.  When choosing a sweetener, I considered the following questions: “ Is it natural?”  “Does the body know what to do with it?” and "Has it been linked to cancer, headaches or some other problem in the future?"  I considered honey, maple syrup, organic sugar but all of those contribute to fat storage and higher blood sugars…not good!  I looked at a myriad of non-caloric sweeteners and found Stevia to be natural but hard to use because it has a noticable after taste and is challenging to near impossible to bake with.

I decided to just use brown sugar and coconut sugar, until I was introduced this summer to a great low glycemic natural sweetener that does not cause blood sugar increase and does not promote fat storage.  The taste is pleasantly sweet and it is granular. It looks like sugar and can be substituted in recipes in the same amounts as sugar.  It can be used in coffee, tea, lemonade, sprinkled on cereal or any other way you would use sugar.  It even carmelizes when heated to give that great finish to desserts.  My diabetic family member has been using it for months to help keep his blood sugar stable and he loves it. I have been using it just like sugar for the past 6 weeks!


MY REVIEW:  When I use  B-Sweet™, I don't feel the least bit guilty that I am putting something that "might" be bad for me into my body!  I am confident in the science behind this product and love having it to share with all the members in my family!  To get a similar sweetness to Stevia, I had to use quite a bit more (in terms of volume), but it doesn't have the same bitter aftertaste that you find with Stevia.  When I make my oatmeal in the morning, I used to put 1 tablespoon of brown sugar to get to the taste I desired.  I have to put about 1 heaping tablespoon of  B-Sweet™, to get a similar taste, but it isn't as sweet.  However, it does taste more natural!  

I haven't been using any artificial sweeteners (Splenda, Sweet N Low, or Equal for YEARS), so I won't be comparing those for this review.  

Well, now you know why they call it the "Family Sweetener."  Its safety crosses all age barriers as well as the diabetic barrier!!


Here is a great family recipe with it!  We made it last night and it was AWESOME!!

Homemade Kettle Korn:
½ cup organic yellow popcorn
1/4-1/3 cup extra virgin coconut oil

Place the corn in a large steel pan with a lid and add the coconut oil as the popping oil.  I used my pasta pot.  Heat the pan and shake a few times for even heating of the corn. When the popcorn is finished and still hot, sprinkle with B Sweet and sea salt to taste.  Add the lid for 1 minute to let the B Sweet melt on the popcorn.  Mix with a spoon and enjoy a healthy family snack.

NERD ALERT: 

Here is the nerdy part of my review for you who want a little more science on this sweetener.  The product is made from carbohydrates called glycosides extracted from acai berries and kiwi fruit.  The prorietary extraction process leaves a delicously sweet granular sweetener that is safe for diabetics, children, pregnant and nursing mothers.  There are no cautions at all on the label.  It is sweet, it is natural and it contributes no fat storing  properties  like sugar and other sweeteners do.  Here  is a link to more detailed information on the product.  It has been tested and certified low glycemic by the Glycemic Research Institute through human clinical trials.  Now that helps me have confidence that the science really has shown the product to meet all the criteria many of us want in a sweetener.


I hope you are as convinced as I am with all the awesome information provided!  Head on over (to the website below) and check it out!

BUY IT: HERE  (As of now it is not available in stores, but can be purchased on line.) 


Disclaimer: I received this product free of charge. All thoughts and opinions are my own. I was not monetarily compensated for this review. 


Friday, September 21, 2012


We had a fun fall trip to the zoo with our new friends that we met at Breastfeeding Support Group!  All these babies are no more than 6-8 weeks apart (well, except Sophia of course!)


Feeding the birds!  She had a blast!

Wow, this redefines BIG HEAD?

Two little lovebirds ... like me and the hubby!

We were so bummed the dolphin show wasn't going on while we were at the zoo!  Next time!!  

Do you have a favorite exhibit at the zoo?




Happy 1st Birthday Jackson!



What a year it has been!!!  My sweet baby boy is now ONE!!  We decided to have a small family party to celebrate this big event!!

My photo journey of Jackson's 1st year!

Jackson's homemade pumpkin spice cake with homemade cream cheese icing!

My Uncle Harv and Aunt Sue with Jax

Happy Birthday Jax!  Mommy and Daddy love you so much!

My parent's attempt at a picture with all 3 grandkids!

My Cousins Chuck and Lori and Jax!

The family!

The "kids" table!  (Sorry Sarah, Brandon, and Grandma!)

Daddy and his boy!  They are buds!

He did a great job opening gifts!

He totally rocked the cake!!!

Only crumbs were left!   He ate a HUGE piece, no dinner of course!

Group picture minus the hubby!

We are so excited to have our sweet Jackson and I am SO glad the boy is FINALLY CRAWLING now!! Yay, on to walking next ... well, in a few months!

Of note ... Please don't do this ... If you see a baby in the store and you ask their mom how old they are and they tell you ONE and DO NOT ask, "Is he walking yet?" and the mom says, "No." DO NOT SAY, "Really? He should be!"  Not every baby walks at 1 year ... ok, stepping off my soapbox!



What Sophia has been up to ...



Since the school year has begun, we have many weekly events on our calender!!  We have school two days a week, I have BSF (Bible Study Fellowship) weekly, dance every Thursday, small group every other week, MOPS every other week!  Whew, I am tired just typing it!  Not very much time for me to work shifts, but that's ok! :)  I have the rest of my life to work, right?  

Having a tea party!  We usually have a few of these per week!

We have joined the Hands and Feet Dance Studio this year!  I LOVE having Sophia involved in this Christian dance program!  Her two teachers, Emma and Meredith, are incredible role models for Sophia!  They have a passion for the Lord, dance, and teaching!

From their website:

"We felt like the Lord was calling us to start a dance studio in our home around two years ago. We wanted to call our studio Hands and Feet because we really like the song “Hands and Feet” that talks about being God’s hands and feet and going where He sends us. We feel He is calling us to be His hands and feet by having a Christian dance studio. In March of 2011, we were also able to go on a mission trip to Haiti and again this July using the money we earned by teaching dance classes. We are praying that we will be able to return to Haiti again soon using the money from teaching classes this season, if that is the Lord's will!"

Her first day of dance!  Consignment sale bargains - her whole outfit, shoes included  $5!



She wrote her name for the FIRST TIME!  Now to get her to do it again ... that is a chore!

Ready to perform for the family!

A few dance moves!

Here she is in action ... they are working on their jazz routine!

video

Thankful for God's blessings in our lives as we figure life out together!

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Finally .... Finally ... Finally!



I have waited and waited and waited ... and the time has FINALLY come!  My sweet boy FINALLY decided he was going to crawl!!  Of course he held out and waited until First Steps came YESTERDAY to work with him for a full hour of physical therapy!  By the end of the PT, he was doing "2-3 crawls" on his own!  Tonight he crawled for about 10 feet!  Here is a clip from his first "real" crawling adventure to get to my cell phone!!

video

I am excited to watch him grow stronger with the continued PT and see what is in store next!  Maybe, just maybe, he will walk by 15 months!!  I am not holding my breath, but oh ... he is getting SOOOOOO heavy! 22 lbs to be exact!!

Stay tuned for more pictures from his 1st birthday party!


Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Tropical Traditions Coconut Oil REVIEW


Many of you might remember my previous blog post regarding "The Best Diaper Cream EVER."  Since I first started using coconut oil for diaper rashes, I began to research how to use coconut oil in the kitchen!  (If you are wondering ... I purchased a new bottle to keep in the kitchen!)

I had no idea all the many uses for coconut oil!  Check out this short You Tube video of all the wonderful uses!

I was recently given a bottle of Tropical Traditions Gold Label Standard Virgin Coconut Oil for review purposes on Go Long! Go Green!  I was so excited b/c I LOVE using coconut oil now!  Check out this awesome video describing what makes their coconut oil different than all the other coconut oils on the market!  They do not mass produce this oil. It is made by families who are coconut farmers using old-fashioned traditional methods that have been used in the Philippines for hundreds of years. Their coconut trees and family producers are certified organic according to strict USDA standards. The families who produce the oil are also trained according to GMP (Good Manufacturing Practice) standards and re-certified each year. This high-grade Virgin Coconut Oil has a long shelf life due to the high antioxidant properties. The Gold Label Standard is their highest standard for Virgin Coconut Oil.   Make sure to check out the Tropical Traditions website for additional information!

Confused on how to use coconut?  The basic way to start is in the kitchen!  As a cooking oil, replace polyunsaturated oils, "vegetable oils" such as corn and soy, with coconut oil!  I also use coconut oil as a replacement for butter in a lot of my recipes.  Or I use 1/2 coconut oil and 1/2 applesauce!  The awesome thing about coconut oil is that it is heat stable and will not become toxic in uses that require high heat!  (Roasting, stir-fry, baking, grilling, etc).

One of my favorite recipes using coconut is for these Gluten-Free Chocolate Chip cookies.  I think these are WAY better than any gluten-containing chocolate chip cookies!  This is my second favorite desert recipe using coconut oil: Healthy Deep Dish Cookie Pie!   It is amazing and your family and friends will never know there are 2 cans of garbanzo beans hidden in the midst of all that yumminess!

For hundreds of more uses of coconut oil in recipes, visit FreeCoconutRecipes.com where other coconut oil users submit their kitchen-tested coconut recipes. They post new recipes every week!  I have found MANY amazing recipes on that website!! 

If you have never tried coconut oil, I highly recommend at least giving it a try!  You will NOT be disappointed!  

BUY IT: HERE

Check them out on FACEBOOK!  They post awesome recipes, giveaway, articles, etc!





Disclaimer: I received this product free of charge. All thoughts and opinions are my own. I was not monetarily compensated for this review.  If you order by clicking on any of my links and have never ordered from Tropical Traditions in the past, you will receive a free book on Virgin Coconut Oil, and I will receive a discount coupon for referring you.




Sunday, September 2, 2012

"Be Still" REVIEW AND GIVEAWAY





"Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.  The Lord Almighty is with us; the God of Jacob is our fortress." Ps 46:10-11.

Every year life gets busier and busier.  There is always 1 more load of laundry to do, 1 more errand to run, 1 more room to vacuum, 1 more text message to answer, 1 more piece of junk mail to sort through, and 1 more __________.  You fill in the blanks!  You and I both know we can all totally identify!  If you can't identify, please tell me what rock you are under ... I would LOVE to come join you!!

Recently, I was contacted to review Lisa Chan's new devotional/teaching series titled "Be Still."   It is the first of a three part series.  (You might recognize the name "Chan" -- Lisa is married to the well-known Christian speaker and writer Frances Chan).  Lisa address' our insane business of life in "Be Still."  She states on the DVD, "Although our life gets busier with each new year, God stays the SAME ...  He encourages us to "Be Still,"  but how exactly do we do this?"

Lisa reminds us that once we stop, "Be Still," and listen, we will begin to see things we wouldn't normally see.  Your stillness allows God to talk to you and help to guide you in His way.

She references the well-known story of Martha and Mary in Luke 10:38-42.


38 As Jesus and his disciples were on their way, he came to a village where a woman named Martha opened her home to him. 39 She had a sister called Mary, who sat at the Lord’s feet listening to what he said. 40 But Martha was distracted by all the preparations that had to be made. She came to him and asked, “Lord, don’t you care that my sister has left me to do the work by myself? Tell her to help me!”
41 “Martha, Martha,” the Lord answered, “you are worried and upset about many things, 42 but only one thing is needed.[a] Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her.”

She asks the question: "Why don't we choose to sit at His feet as Mary did?"  I know that is a very difficult question to answer, let alone act upon.  It is so much easier to consume ourselves with the business of life, and get swept away, as opposed to sitting, quietly, waiting for the promptings of the Lord.  

Lisa reminds us of the passage in John 15:4-5, the Vine and the Branches.  

Remain in me, as I also remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me.
“I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.


We can do nothing good apart from Him.

I will leave you with the same question Lisa asked of me ... "How can you truly know God if you aren't still before Him?  

WATCH IT: HERE  and HERE

BUY IT: HERE

WIN IT:  Lisa Chan and crew has graciously offered one very lucky Go Long Go Green reader a copy of "Be Still."  

To enter, please leave a comment with your name, email address, and why you think this DVD would be of benefit to you!
  
This giveaway is open to ALL and will end on Thursday September 13, 2012 at midnight. The winner will be drawn via random.org and will have 48 hours to respond or another winner will be drawn. Please, no PO Boxes.

Disclaimer: I received this product free of charge. All thoughts and opinions are my own. I was not monetarily compensated for this review.