Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Support #Local Businesses - #Donations Mentioned

Reminder: Support local businesses and small business chains. 

Farmer Boys in San Jacinto, CA are generous with their fundraising donations. They are donating just shy of $100 to my after school program with LINC Housing/Cares. They are also doing ongoing fundraisers for my after school program.

I am grateful to LilPixieBOWtique for their very generous donation valued at $2755 to the LINC Cares after school program. The owner donated personalized and handmade bottlecaps and dog tags with accessories to our End of Year Resident Appreciation Event. We had a jewelry making table open to all attending residents free of charge.

I am also thankful to Cooking and Kids for their generous offer of 10 dozen shortbread style “sugar” cookies for our event mentioned above. She donated a healthy spin to the typical holiday sugar cookies. They were made with flax seeds (I think this is her personal signature!) and the extra  bonus was that they were cut out into cute shapes – stars, flowers, circles, and gingerbread men for decorating. 

Last but not least, I am thankful to K. Ville Designs for donating a diaper cake. This was one of several raffles given to the residents who remained at the event for its duration.  Thank you Karla for making this item extra special! (Diaper cake pictured on the table.) 

In the past six months, I have received donations from Walmart, Stater Bros, Vons, Sprouts, Hemet PAL (Police Activities League), a local home schooling mother, and cupcakes from So Good Gluten Free Foods

Thank you to everyone above who has participated in giving back to a local community who is grateful for your generosity.

Signed, 

Jessica wearing 1 of many hats - Resident & Youth Services Coordinator/After School Program Coordinator
Update: My tenure at LINC Housing ended in July 2012 when I moved out of the area. 

Monday, December 26, 2011

Favorite #Health Tips for 2011 - #colloidalsilver #arnicagel

For dry, chapped lips – Put a little coconut oil in your navel and follow it with some on your lips. Do this 2-3x a day for a few days and watch the improvement unfold! No more chapped lips! Bottom line: Coconut oil is not only good for consuming but excellent for improving your skin’s suppleness!

My favorite natural product for 2011 – by far is Silver Shield with Aqua Sol Technology. We picked up the cosmetic gel as we were looking for a safe, natural antibiotic. We removed the neosporins and alike from our medicine cabinet and needed a suitable replacement. This is it!! Perhaps costly as compared to the alternatives but wins in the faster healing process, it is safe – no harmful ingredients and backed by research (no bad reports)...just to name a few of the benefits. .

The second runner up (a very close first) - Arnica Gel. We use this for bumps and bruises and it also helps with muscle soreness. A little goes a long way. 


Thursday, November 17, 2011

Green #Smoothie #Recipe

I'm in love with vegetables (and fruit)! I love nearly everything in the green department for vegetables. I know this is not a favorite color among many. So, I recommend two things: 1) blend up a smoothie and / or 2) eat whole food nutrition in a capsule or chewable!

This morning we made a green smoothie comprising of banana, pineapple with its core, fresh spinach and kale, water and ice. Fill Vitamix in this order. Blend for 30 seconds.

*Benefits of banana: potassium, rich in vitamin B6, elimination properties (think electrolytes)
*Benefits of pineapple: antioxidants and inflammatory properties, highest in Maganese, digestive benefits
*Benefits of spinach: antioxidants, carotenoids, highest in Vitamins K, A, C and folate
*Benefits of kale: cholesterol lowering benefits, Omega 3 properties, detox support, several dozen flavonoids, high in vitamins K, A, and C, inflammatory properties

What is your favorite green smoothie recipe? Don't have one? Try this one! Then share with me your favorite smoothie (one that you make). 

Choose, eat, and live well! =)

*WHFoods dot org


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Tuesday, November 8, 2011

A #King's Daughter - Spiritual #Wellness

After nearly 14 years since receiving my salvation, on Sunday, October 16th, I was water baptized! 

Why did it take so long? Probably formalities or missed the announcements over the years. I first showed interest in doing so in 2004 but when the church scheduled it, I was on my way out of the country so I missed it. Then when I attended the church overseas, it took a few years before there was enough interest per se for it to be held - who knows this is just speculation. Well, I knew this year that when the opportunity came up I was going to do it rain or shine (figurative/literal) and that's just what happened! I heard the announcement two weeks before and committed to it! 

Why did I do it? I want to deepen my relationship to and with Jesus Christ. To me, it's not about religion, it's about relationship! Honestly, that's how I treat everything in my life. Relationship trumps all.  Business cannot be conducted without first having a relationship with people. It's not about products or services, it's about people! So with this baptism, it is about Jesus! I want to fulfill my calling to be a Prayer Warrior for the Most High. It is a pleasure to pray with and for others. 

How did I feel while it took place/afterwards? I had much peace and sheer happiness. Everyone said they were excited to see me because of the joyful expression I had on my face. I felt my body shake a little after coming out of the water. Matter of fact the feeling was much like surrendering to the Holy Spirit right before you "fall out". I was thankful my husband was there along with my son. My little one after seeing me come out of the water yelled, "my turn!" then proceeded to hand me my towel. What a sweet boy. This was a public declaration that I call myself a Christ follower. I'm a sinner but I am forgiven. I am grateful for a gracious God, Someone who will always love me, One who has chosen me and has equipped me for this journey. Thank you Heavenly Father. #JesusReigns


Sunday, September 4, 2011

Sunday #Dessert - Dirt Cake, Improved #Ingredients

I have had a taste for chocolate pudding for a minute now but nearly, if not all, pudding packages and pre-made in the cup types have controversial ingredients that I’m not willing to bake from (i.e. high fructose corn syrup (HFCS), hydrogenated oils, and artificial dyes). I know there’s the “in-moderation” factor but that usually comes in the territory of eating at someone else’s house (a restaurant, etc) and not pigging out. Ha!

Before I knew about HFCS, I used to make a dirt cake. Its main ingredients I’m sure you’re familiar are cream cheese, pudding, and of course, Oreos!

I’d like to share a new version of the dirt cake below. It varies a bit from the traditional dirt cake. You’re welcome to substitute or add ingredients to your liking.

Dirt cake, new version:


End product - Caution: SUPER Sweet! 

Crust:
9 Graham Crackers, finely crushed 
6 tablespoons of melted butter
1/3 cup of organic cane sugar
1 teaspoon of cinnamon

Mix together. 

Spread in pan of your choice, bake at 375 degrees for 8 minutes.



Filling:
Organic chocolate pudding (Dr. Oetker's brand is a good option) - cooked on the stove top.

Toppings:
16 Newman's Own chocolate sandwich cookies, divided; finely crushed and coarsely chopped (filling removed and not used)
Whipped Cream

Recipe for whipped cream:
1 pint of heavy whipping cream
6 tablespoons of confectioner’s sugar (make your own in a blender using organic cane sugar)
2 teaspoons of vanilla extract

While preparing ingredients, put the mixing bowl in the freezer to facilitate the mixing process of the cream.

Mix on medium 1 pint of the whipping cream until peaks form. Do not over mix. Stir in sugar and vanilla. Refrigerate until ready to use.

After Graham Cracker crust cools, spread pudding on top, apply a dusting of finely crushed cookies then spread whipped cream on top. Finally, sprinkle coarsely chopped cookies over cream. Cover with foil and chill 3-4 hours. (Note: You can use serving dishes or whatever fancies you.) 



Buon Appetito!


I do receive a small commission from Amazon.com if you purchase anything through their site using one of the links above (read my full advertising disclosure here). 

Thank you very much for your generosity in helping to offset the costs of website upkeep, so that I can keep sharing wellness resources with my community and beyond.

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Choose, eat, and live well! =)

Friday, July 22, 2011

#Recipe: #Banana Bread

I was inspired by a recipe I found on All Recipes for banana bread and this is my rendition.

I've made plenty of banana bread recipes in the past but they came out far too dry. Two ways to fix this: Find a better recipe and /or use mini loaf pans

Ingredients:
1 teaspoon baking soda
¼ teaspoon salt
½ cup butter slightly softened
1/2 cup coconut sugar
2 eggs, beaten
4-5 medium sized bananas, over ripened (2 1/3 cups)

Directions:
Heat oven to 350 degrees.

In a small bowl, mix together the flour, baking soda and salt. In a mixing bowl or with hand mixer, cream together softened butter and coconut sugar. Add eggs and mix thoroughly. Add bananas and stir thoroughly. Batter will be somewhat watery looking. This is a good thing. If it’s not, you probably didn’t use enough bananas. At last, fold in flour mixture until just moistened.

Spray 4 mini loaf pans with Pam and pour batter evenly into all pans. Bake for 25-30 minutes or until nice brown color and toothpick comes out clean. You want it to be somewhat spongy on top. Do not over bake. Bread will have pockets of banana throughout.



Cool on wire racks for 10 minutes. Remove from pans. Continue to cool for 10 minutes then wrap in foil and store in air tight container.

Slice and serve warm, if desired.

Buon Appetito!

I do receive a small commission from Amazon.com if you purchase anything through their site using one of the links above (read my full advertising disclosure here). 

Thank you very much for your generosity in helping to offset the costs of website upkeep, so that I can keep sharing wellness resources with my community and beyond.

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Choose, eat, and live well! =)

Monday, July 18, 2011

My Personal #Quotes - #Encouragement #Nutrition #Wellness

These quotes are being added to my blog to ensure copyrighting protection. They are my words


"Good nutrition is the foundation for which your health is found based". ~ Jessica David 

“Time and money can be two hindrances to fulfilling your goal(s); however, once you become knowledgeable, you begin to shift priorities creating value in your complete health.” ~ Jessica David



"Do not mistaken my open-mindedness as a compromise in faith. Won't happen. Nothing and no one can change my heart from Jesus." ~ Jessica David

"When people seem out of funk and things just don't make sense... I remember whose I am and what this world offers doesn't always line up with what God wants for me." ~ Jessica David
"Reach for the stars and if you miss, you'll still land upon the greatest of mountain tops." 
~ Jessica David

"Choose, eat, and live well! ~ Jessica David


"Reflect on where you've been; embrace where you're at, and envision where you'll go." 

~ Jessica David

"Words are powerful. They carry so much weight but yet can change the direction of the wind in an instant." ~ Jessica David


 
"Everyone has a story to tell and share. Giving people a chance to share is the rewarding part of a relationship." ~ Jessica David


"Surround yourself with people who lift you up. Someone may think similar to you but if they're inciting negativity it would behoove you to move on. Find ones that inspire greatness." ~ Jessica David

Thursday, July 14, 2011

#Recipe: #Zucchini Bread

Recipe for Zucchini Bread

I use 3 mini loaf pans because the bread bakes better and leaves the edges a little crisp and the middle nice and moist. I’ve tried the regular size and it didn’t cook evenly.

Ingredients:

1 ½ cups of flour 
1 tsp cinnamon
½ tsp baking soda
¼ tsp baking powder
¼ tsp salt
½ tsp nutmeg
1 cup shredded unpeeled zucchini (I typically add more)
1 cup sugar
1 egg
1 tsp lemon zest 
More coconut oil to grease the pans and flour to dust them 
Optional: ¼ cup of walnuts, almonds, etc of your liking

Directions: 
Heat oven to 350 degrees.

Grab two bowls – medium and large.

In the smaller of the two bowls, combine the flour, cinnamon, baking soda, baking powder, salt, and nutmeg. Set aside.

In the other bowl, combine the shredded zucchini, egg, sugar, oil and lemon.

Pour the flour mixture into the bigger bowl and stir until moist. Divide into greased loaf pan(s). Bake.  I let them bake for 30-35 minutes or until a tooth pick comes out dry. Cool in pans for 10 minutes then on wire rack until cool to the touch. Store in air tight container. It keeps up to 4 days (but it won't last that long!).

Buon Appetito!





Sunday, July 10, 2011

Update: #Recipe: #Granola #Chocolate Chip Cookies

Awesome Granola-Chip Cookies

The original recipe is Awesome Oatmeal-Raisin Cookies by Dr. Bill Sears, The Healthiest Kid in the Neighborhood, 2006, page 304.

I modified his recipe based on what was in my pantry at the time. 

½ cup raw honey
½ cup coconut oil (if you're allergic to coconut oil, try grapeseed or EVOO)
½ tsp. baking soda
1 tbsp. ground cinnamon
1 tsp. vanilla extract
¼ tsp. baking powder
¼ tsp. sea salt
1 egg
1 ½ cups of granola (Bob's Red Mill has non-GMO soy ingredients)
1 cup whole wheat pastry flour
1 cup of chocolate chips

Heat oven to 365 degrees. Combine all wet ingredients then mix dry ingredients separately. Add dry to wet. The batter will be slightly loose. Drop the batter by the tablespoon on a cookie sheet and bake until light brown. The batter will spread while baking. Done in 7-9 minutes. Yields: 30 cookies. 

Notes: Use parchment paper (affiliate link shows unbleached parchment paper which is favorable). 

The batter is already brown so you’ll have to watch for a smooth brown appearance.  You may need to test one batch so bake only a couple until you get the feel for what they’ll look like when they’re done.

I do receive a small commission from Amazon.com if you purchase anything through their site using one of the links above (read my full advertising disclosure here). 

Thank you very much for your generosity in helping to offset the costs of website upkeep, so that I can keep sharing wellness resources with my community and beyond.



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Choose, eat, and live well! =)




Saturday, July 2, 2011

#Honeysuckles - One of life's #sweet memories

A couple weeks ago, my son and I walked around a local lake and as we were finishing up our first lap, we could smell the fruity, sweet scent of honeysuckles. 

Honeysuckles bring me back to my childhood. I grew up on the East Coast and honeysuckles were everywhere! With the change of Winter to Spring and with the smell of fresh cut grass came the sweetness of honeysuckles. The honeysuckle season seemed to last only a month or so. They were gone well before Summer. Living in Southern California provides many benefits and in this particular case, honeysuckles lasting well into June (and possibly longer)!

I'm usually pressed to finish my laps but this particular evening, I decided to teach my son the beauty of eating the nectar from a honeysuckle. We stepped aside and popped a squat on the grass next to a shrub of honeysuckles. Looking around there weren't that many to choose from. The landscapers had came through the day before and cut most of them down. I don't know perhaps they're a nuisance of some kind? I hope that's not the case because they smell beautifully and the nectar is sweet to eat! I recently learned that there are over 100 species of honeysuckle! I had NO clue! I'm only familiar with the white flour type. I know there is a scientific word for it but I have some pictures below that will show you exactly what I am referring to.

After popping a squat, I picked out a few white flowered honeysuckles and showed my son how to pull off the bottom and pull out the "stamen [to] reveal a small drop of honeysuckle nectar" (M. Holt) then I gave him a few turns. He got it in no time. He's a fast learner for being 2. Here are some pictures of our adventure. 




For more information on honeysuckles check out eHow's site.

Don't forget to stop and enjoy the simple pleasures of life. 

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Choose, eat, and live well! =)


Tuesday, June 28, 2011

#Healthy Fudge #Recipe

Two weeks ago I attended a sampling at a local kids center geared towards children with sensory needs. I offered free samples of my products' chewables made from 25 fruits, vegetables, grains, berries and grapes. My product helps kids get more of their recommended daily servings of fruits and vegetables. I had also prepared a healthy version of what my community likes to call fudge. It's a fun, easy and healthy recipe! You can definitely get the kids involved as there is no cooking. I would recommend children ages 3 and up. 

Ingredients: 
Cooking non-stick spray of your choice, Juice Plus+ Complete protein powder (or your choice of protein powder), walnuts, dried cranberries, peanut butter (or almond butter), hemp plus granola, and maple syrup. Here are the ingredients:



Instructions: 
Mix together dry ingredients then stir in wet ingredients. (You may need some elbow grease at this point.) Press mixture into 9 x 13 pan.  Cover top with a layer of shredded coconut or sesame seeds (I omitted these); press into the surface of the mixture.  Refrigerate.  Cut into bars when mixture is solid.  Keep refrigerated between servings.

Allergens: gluten, nuts, milk (from the Complete pictured).
The Complete formula has been updated and is gluten-free. 

Benefits: 
1 cup Chocolate Juice Plus+ Complete powder (non-GMO tofu, pea, rice & chickpea protein)
2 cups Nature’s Path Organic Hemp Plus Granola (Omega 3s)
1/2 cup chopped walnuts (improves cholesterol)
1/2 cup dried cranberries (antioxidants - protects cells from free radicals)
1 cup maple syrup (amino acids – essential to cell maintenance, function and regeneration)
1 cup creamy peanut butter (source of protein used to rebuild muscles)

Update April 14, 2013: Use organic non-stick spray or another oil to keep it from sticking to the bottom of pan, a silpat or unbleached parchment paper. Also be sure to use natural peanut butter as linked above. If you've been following my blog since 2009, you would have learned that I just started my wellness journey around that time. I always encourage people to start somewhere - baby steps moving forward is still progress! 

Results: 
I handed out a sample of the fudge to all the parents of the children who attended the Early Bird special at the children's center. All but one accepted. The mother who refused said since her children couldn't have gluten she didn't want to sample. Everyone who ate a piece commented on how surprisingly delicious it tasted after hearing the ingredients. Try them for yourself! 

Be well.

I do receive a small commission from Amazon.com if you purchase anything through their site using one of the links above (read my full advertising disclosure here). 

Thank you very much for your generosity in helping to offset the costs of website upkeep, so that I can keep sharing wellness resources with my community and beyond.

Subscribe to my blog here to never miss a post. 
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Choose, eat, and live well! =)







Friday, June 24, 2011

#Estrogen Dominance, Balancing #Hormones Naturally (for women) #Health Talk - My Notes

I attended a free health lecture at Sprout's [now called Organic Roots] on Balancing Hormones. These are my notes:


In our industrialized nation, 90% of everything we consume to eat/drink (everything that is non-organic has estrogen in it) and to put on our bodies – lotions, shampoos, detergents, clothing, etc has either petroleum or a byproduct of petroleum in it (if it lists parabens, it has estrogen in it). Estrogen is found in petroleum. 

We are dealing with an estrogen dominated society. This is not good. This means that from every direction we are getting estrogen but LOSING progesterone unless it’s being replaced by a pregnancy, a menstrual cycle, or progesterone in its natural form. For women, the receptor sites are located in our breasts and in our uterus. The estrogen is being absorbed by these sites hence reasons in infertility and breast cancer among many other health issues.

Estrogen dominance leads to diabetes, osteoporosis, and breast cancer. It was said that by the age of 50 we will start to lose bone mass. However, this age is decreasing due to the estrogen dominance in our society. The age is about 35!!

The #1 way to tell if women are estrogen dominated is fat around breasts and waist that does not go away even with exercise.

Hormones rule over our endocrine system. Progesterone is an important hormone and we need it for our entire life.

Progesterone the hormone found in women is responsible for making cells for hair, nails, and bones.

The best way to get the progesterone is through a trans-dermal (topical) cream that is applied to the fatty tissue on our bodies – for women, it’s our inner thighs, our arms near our pits, and stomach. 

Progesterone cream from Wild Yam plant is touted as the best.

Progesterone is wonderful for combating dry skin and wrinkles. Are you experiencing migraines? What about incontinence? What about libido and motivation? Terrible sleep?  Can’t lose some problem area weight? Having fertility issues? Etc. 

It’s the balance of hormones, i.e., progesterone, in our body that keeps us healthy. 

Be well.

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Choose, eat, and live well! =)

Monday, June 20, 2011

#Antioxidants and Free Radicals and their roles

Information found herein is an online collaboration from several sources. All fully cited and credit attributed to the source from which it was gathered.   

Antioxidants are substances that may protect cells from the damage caused by unstable molecules known as free radicals. Examples of antioxidants include beta-carotene, lycopene, vitamins C and E, and other substances. Many of these antioxidant substances come from fruits and vegetables (Antioxidants and Cancer Prevention: Fact Sheet, National Cancer Institute dot com).

The brain is especially vulnerable to damage from free radicals (Robert Lee Hotz, LA Times, Autism Today dot com).

Glutathione - levels of this protective antioxidant were abnormally low in many autistic children (Robert Lee Hotz, LA Times, "Research yields autism clues", Apr 2005).

Many autistic children share a chronic flaw in the body's natural defenses against oxygen free radicals - corrosive molecules in the body that can severely damage developing brain cells (Robert Lee Hotz, LA Times, "Study Links Free Radicals to the Spectrum of Autism", Apr 2005).

Antioxidants act as scavengers, helping to prevent cell and tissue damage that could lead to cellular damage and disease (The Biggest Loser dot com (Australia), "What are antioxidants?").

Antioxidants, present in many foods, are molecules that prevent free radicals from harming healthy tissue.

You can also get free radicals from external environmental factors, such as cigarette smoke, radiation, ultraviolet light, certain drugs, exercise, pesticides and industrial solvents (E How dot com, Health, Nick Ng, "What are free radicals?", April 2011).
Free radical accumulation in your body causes many diseases including heart disease, cancer and arthritis, as well as premature aging  (E How dot com, Health, Nick Ng, "What are free radicals?", April 2011). 

It is already known that children with autism are likely to have more oxidative stress, or difficulty in managing free radicals, than children who do not have autism. It is also known that children with autism have unusual blood circulation  (Healing Thresholds, Correlation with Oxidative Stress, Arch Neurol., by Yao, Y., Walsh WJ, McGinnis WR, and Pratico D., published in 2006, summarized Oct 21, 2006).

Oxidative stress, defined as a disturbance in the balance between the production of reactive oxygen species (free radicals) and antioxidant defenses (Pub Med dot gov, "What is oxidative stress?", Betteridge, DJ, Feb 2000).

One of the alternative medications currently used to fight autism is the coQ10, also known as the Coenzyme Q10. The CoQ10 protects the brain from free radicals (The Free Library dot com, CoQ10 and Its Role in the Fight Against Autism", May 2009). 

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Choose, eat, and live well! =)