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Awesome Blogger Award

Thank you to Tamara from Purple Almond Wellness for the Awesome Blogger Award nomination! I am honored and grateful to be a part of this fun and awesome blogging community!

The Rules

  • Thank the person who nominated you.
  • Tag the post with #awesomebloggeraward.
  • Answer at least 5 of the questions you were asked (you can also answer all that is offered on your platter).
  • Nominate at least five bloggers and inform them of their nomination.
  • Give them a minimum of 5 new questions to answer.

My Answers to Tamara’s Questions

  1. If You Could Ask Advice From Any Historical Figure, Who Would It Be? What Would You Ask Them?

Martin Luther King Jr. I would ask him how a normal person like myself could help to change the increasingly divisive climate in the U.S. today.

  1. If You Had A Theme Song, What Would It Be and Why? (post a YouTube link to your song if you can find it!)

Oceans by Hillsong United because I love Jesus and everything good comes from Him.

and

The theme song from Seinfeld. I never liked Seinfeld, but when I ran track in high school, this song would play in my head while I was running. It makes me think of running and rushing through life. I am always busy—I am trying to work hard now so that I don’t have to be as busy later!

  1. If You Could Write One New Law That Everyone Had To Obey, What Law Would You Create and why?

This question stumped me, so I asked my husband what he thought. He mentioned The Golden Rule from Matthew 7:12: “So whatever you wish that others would do to you, do also to them, for this is the Law and the Prophets.”   

  1. The House Is On Fire, But Everyone Is Safely Out, The Pets Are Safely Out, And All Wallets/Cash Are Saved. If You Could Make One Last Dash To Get Something, What Would It Be And why?

My portable hard drive so that I wouldn’t lose old pictures and videos!

  1. If You Were Given One Thousand Acres Of Land, What Would You Do With It?

I would use most of the land as farmland to grow organic produce and to raise animals using traditional, sustainable, ethical practices.

My Nominees

Do not feel obligated to participate, but if you do, let me know so that I can read your article!

  1. Junaisha from The Godly Chic Diaries
  2. Leanne from My Journey Through
  3. Kelley from kelleysdiy
  4. Ash from Ash Alves
  5. Valerie from Valerie Cullers

Questions for My Nominees

  1. Why did you start blogging?
  2. Who is your role model and why?
  3. If I asked your friends and family to use three words to describe you, which words would they use?
  4. If you didn’t have to work for a living, what would you do?
  5. What advice do you have for new bloggers?

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Kindness Craving

When I was younger, I didn’t think that I had special talents like other people did. I was just the skinny, quiet Asian girl with big glasses and braces. So, I thought, well, if I can’t be really great at something, at the very least, I can be known as “the nice girl”. So, I tried to be nice to my peers.

As I got older, and started to embrace my unique gifts, (everyone has these) I started to care less about being the nice girl. When I was busy with school, work, and babies, I subconsciously told myself that I don’t have time to be nice anymore.

About a year ago, I realized that I was wrong. The world is craving kindness! And you know what? Kindness doesn’t have to take too much time or effort. Here are some ideas on how to show kindness.

Open the door for pregnant ladies, new moms—or anyone, really.

When I was pregnant with my first child, two gentlemen walked ahead of me and opened the double doors on each side of me. I felt like a queen walking through those doors!

When I was a new mom, it was overwhelming to go shopping with my new baby and a stroller. It meant the world to me when someone helped me open the heavy doors in front of me.

Instead of sending a boring text message, send a voice “text” message.

I don’t know about you, but I am on screens so much that I start to hate my cell phone. Instead of sending another monotonous text, send a voice text. I bet your loved ones would love to hear your voice!

Send snail mail.

I have a bad habit of only opening my mail once per week or once every other week because I like to avoid unexpected bills and useless paper. Snail mail from a friend is usually a welcome surprise!

Give someone the benefit of the doubt.

If someone takes your place in line, don’t get all bent out of shape. Maybe she had a lot on her mind and wasn’t thinking when she stepped in front of you.

Smile and be friendly to strangers.

Strike up a conversation with someone and see how someone’s day is going. If you are practicing “social distancing”, you can still do this from a distance.

Say nothing negative for a day.

This is good for the mental health of you and the people that you live with.

Be curious about someone else’s views without voicing your own opinion.

There’s a lot of division in the world—it’s really concerning and heartbreaking! When you have the time, why not sit down with Uncle Fred and ask him why he believes the opposite of you when it comes to Issue X? If you genuinely care to learn, Uncle Fred will probably be happy to share with you, you might learn something, and the whole conversation might bring you closer together. Uncle Fred might even ask you to share your views with him. I struck up a conversation like this with my aunt a few years before she died. If I had not initiated this conversation, I might not have known her or respected her as much as I do now.

For more ideas, check out Shaunti Feldhahn’s book, The Kindness Challenge. What other ideas do you have? I need more!

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Tasty Superfood Smoothie

I used to make super healthy smoothies for my skin and gut. Unfortunately, these smoothies required a lot of time to prepare and the taste made my kids want to gag. I started making this smoothie a couple of weeks ago. It’s basically a superfood smoothie that tastes delicious—all three of my kids love it!

Tasty Superfood Smoothie

(approximately 2 servings)

1 and 1/4 cup raw yogurt, raw milk, coconut milk, or almond milk

1 cup blueberries

1 teaspoon raw almond butter

1 tablespoon chia seeds

1 scoop vegetable supplement mix or 1-2 cups spinach

1 scoop multi-collagen protein (optional)

1 teaspoon coconut sugar (optional)

1 teaspoon cacao powder (optional)

Place all ingredients into a blender. Blend for two minutes. Savor the taste and enjoy a pleasant boost in mood and energy!

Raw Yogurt, Raw Milk, Almond Milk, or Coconut Milk

Raw dairy is controversial in the U.S., but did you know that other countries have Raw Milk vending machines? Raw milk—known as the “perfect food”—is packed with nutrients, healthy fat, and probiotics. If you are not a raw dairy fan, coconut milk is helpful for just about everything in your body. Almond milk is a good source of vitamins E, D, and calcium. Almonds provide healthy fat for the heart, brain, and gut. They can also help to regulate blood sugar and can act as a weight loss aid because they make you feel full.

Blueberries

This is another superfood that is beneficial for just about everything in the body, especially the brain, gut, and heart. Blueberries can help fight cancer and they can reduce inflammation.

Chia Seeds

Because chia seeds are high in fiber and omega 3s, the consumption of chia seeds can help regulate bowel movements and can help with inflammation and mood disorders. Chia seeds also contain a lot of protein.

Vegetable Supplement Mix or Spinach

I started making these smoothies because I wanted to find an easy way for my kids to get more vegetables in their diet. Some of the ingredients in my current vegetable supplement mix contain kale, dandelion greens, collard greens, broccoli, cabbage, wheat grass, alfalfa, oat grass, barley grass, and goji berries. It’s always best to get nutrients from whole foods, but the vegetable supplement mix helps fill in some of the nutritional gaps in their diet. If you don’t want to use a vegetable supplement, spinach is a good substitute because it has a mild taste that will not make the smoothie taste bitter.

Multi-Collagen Protein

I started using this in 2016 and stopped using it after one container because I didn’t believe that it was helpful for anything. I started using it again this past year. Guess what happened? The dry, hard, thick reptile-like skin on my heels now has a normal appearance and texture! Multi-collagen protein is beneficial for the gut, skin, nails, and joints.

Coconut Sugar

I wish I had known about coconut sugar sooner! Coconut sugar is a good alternative to regular sugar because it is good for the gut. Just keep in mind to consume coconut sugar in moderation. Also, due to the carbohydrate content, coconut sugar is not keto-friendly. If you don’t have coconut sugar but want to add a little more sweetness to your smoothie, you can add a banana, 1-2 dates, or 1 teaspoon of pure, raw honey.

Cacao Powder

Cacao is good for your muscles, gut, heart, and mood. This one is definitely a mood booster for me. The mere smell of cacao powder makes me happy!

What’s your favorite smoothie recipe?

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Apple Cider Vinegar for Amazing Health

Whenever the skin on my hands becomes overly dry and irritated, I can tell that my gut needs a little help. In addition to increasing my water intake, I have started drinking apple cider vinegar again. I drink one tablespoon of Bragg apple cider vinegar—organic, raw, and made with “mother” enzymes”—in one cup of water before breakfast and lunch. Apple Cider Vinegar has many amazing uses—below are three of my favorites!

Bacteria Killer

In the time of Hippocrates and The Old Testament, apple cider vinegar and honey were used to fight infection and to clean skin wounds. According to one clinical study, apple cider vinegar has antimicrobial effects on E-coli, S. aureus, and C. albicans. It can help the body get rid of bad bacteria in the gut. A healthier gut leads to a healthier you!

Diabetes Fighter

Vinegar helps to lower blood glucose in people that have type 2 diabetes or people that are at-risk of developing type 2 diabetes. One study showed that a change in diet and one tablespoon of vinegar twice per day led to a greater decrease in fasting blood glucose than daily rosiglitazone or metformin use.

Weight Loss Helper

In one study, researchers concluded that apple cider vinegar reduced the risk of obesity in rats. In another study that lasted for 12 weeks, obese human subjects that consumed 15 mL or 30 mL of vinegar had significantly lower weight, body mass index, visceral fat, waist circumference, and triglyceride levels than subjects that did not consume vinegar.

Before you decide to consume apple cider vinegar, you might want to consult with your healthcare professional. Also, be sure to dilute it in water and do not overdo it. Over-consumption can lead to stomach upset, erosion of the enamel of your teeth, a decrease in your potassium level, and other unwanted effects.

What do you think of this natural remedy?

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The Mommy Pooch and Other Mommy Issues

When I visited my midwife six weeks after having my third baby, she told me that I had diastasis recti (abnormal abdominal separation) and referred me to a Physical Therapist.

According to Healthline, diastasis recti can lead to:

  • jeopardized trunk stability and mobility
  • back pain
  • pelvic pain
  • damage to posture
  • pelvic floor dysfunction
  • hernia, in extreme cases

I had two other kids at home and a newborn to take care of. How was I going to find time to see a Physical Therapist? I used to have really strong abs before I had kids. I could handle this on my own—that’s what I thought, anyway.

For the next few months, I went on YouTube and searched for workouts that targeted Diastasis Recti. I worked on my abs off and on for months, but the Mommy Pooch would not go away.

During this time, I also started having mild symptoms of pelvic floor dysfunction (urinary leakage) and learned that childbirth can be a cause of that.

According to Healthline, symptoms of pelvic floor dysfunction include:

  • urinary issues, such as the urge to urinate or painful urination
  • constipation or bowel straining
  • lower back pain
  • pain in the pelvic region, genitals, or rectum
  • discomfort during sexual intercourse for women
  • pressure in the pelvic region or rectum
  • muscle spasms in the pelvis

In February, I finally started seeing a Physical Therapist for diastasis recti and mild pelvic floor dysfunction. From day one, I could tell that the hands-on manipulation and customized exercises were helping to heal my abs. After two visits, I did not have anymore issues with urinary leakage. (The pelvic exam and exercises were a little awkward, but they were worth it!) After a couple of weeks, I could tell that my jelly-like abdomen was starting to revert to the solid muscle that it once had been. It is now easier to perform normal daily activities and I hope to be able to do some more intense workouts in the near future!

Have you ever been treated by a Physical Therapist?

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