Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Tate in the Kitchen - Paleo Pumpkin Spice Granola

This stuff is a staple in our house...we almost always have a batch on hand!

What you need:

1 cup dried cranberries
2 cups plantain chips (or banana chips)
2 cups almond slices
2 cups coconut (unsweetened)
2 cups chopped pecans
1 cup chopped walnuts
1 cup pumpkin seeds
1 cup sunflower seeds
2/3 cup Coconut Oil
1/2 cup raw honey
4 Tbls Pure Maple Syrup
2 Tbls Pumpkin Spice Spice
1/2 tsp salt
2tsp Vanilla Extract

Pre-Heat to 300 degrees.

Mix all of the nuts, seeds, coconut, plantain/banana chips, dried cranberries, salt and the pumpkin pie spice in a large bowl.

In a sauce pan, heat up the coconut oil, honey, maple syrup and vanilla extract until it is all melted together.  Pour the mixture on top of the nut/seed mixture and stir together to make sure everything is coated with the liquid mixture.

Pour everything onto cookie sheets on parchment paper...I use silpats.  Bake for 25 minutes and then take out of the oven and cool before breaking it apart.

This makes a TON, so you could cut it in half if you don't want that much. :)

I eat it like cereal with almond milk over it.

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Something happened yesterday...

Wesley's story is complicated and the details are not something I plan to disclose, but yesterday for the first time, something was the conversation we had...

Wesley: "Mommy?  What was I called when I was a little baby?"

Me: "What do you mean?  What was your name?"

Wesley: "What did the girl who I grew in her tummy call me?"

Me:  "She called you Wesley, that is the name she gave you when you were born."

Wesley: "My name was Wesley when I was a little baby?!"

Me:  "Yes.  That was the name your birth mom gave you...your name has always been Wesley."

Wesley: "My birth mom?  Do I have a birth daddy?"

Me:  "Yes.  Your birth dad's name is Wesley also!  You were named after him.  You know how Tate's birth daddy is named Brandon?  Your birth daddy is named, Wesley."

Wesley:  (giggling) "That is silly!  Are you almost done with my hair?  I want to go play."

And that was it.

That is pretty much how things go...any serious conversation doesn't last long with Tate OR Wes, but Wesley has also NEVER asked about his birth parents.  It is something I have thought A LOT about and how I might respond to what questions he might have.  I am nervous about a lot of it...I want to say/do the right things for him and also for our family.  I want him to know where he comes from, but also want to protect him from knowing the "bad" stuff.  I don't know that I can.  He's 6...these questions were bound to start coming out.  I was caught off guard by it last night and now can't stop thinking about that short exchange.  I know this is just the beginning.

Monday, January 19, 2015

Tate in the Kitchen: Crockpot Balsamic Glazed Drumsticks

What you need:

16 Chicken Drumsticks
6 TBLSP Coconut or Olive Oil
1 Cup Balsamic Vinegar
6 TBLSP Soy Sauce (or Tamari if you are GF)
2 TBLSP Honey

You are SUPPOSED to Marinate the chicken drumsticks in this mixture for 24 hours or put the mixture and drumsticks in a freezer bag for later.  Then, put in the crockpot for 8 hours.  However, we didn't plan ahead and we just put frozen drumsticks directly into the crockpot and poured all of these ingredients on top and let cook for 8 hours and they were sooooo delicious!  The chicken was falling off of the bone and it was super flavorful!

Tate in the Kitchen : Roasted Vegetables

In an effort to get back in the habit of blogging more, I am going to TRY to start a bit of a series here on my blog called "Tate in the Kitchen".  I will post each time Tate makes does his cooking and include the recipe.  Obviously, the dishes will be super easy as he is the one making them completely on his own, but so far the last two things he has cooked were DEEEELISH!  Maybe for my friends out there who have kiddos his age, they will be able to have their kiddos make some of these dishes too! :)

Roasted Veggies:

Use the veggies you like, we roast lots of different kinds of veggies, but this time we did broccoli, cauliflower, carrots and onions.

Pre-Heat oven to 425 degrees.
Put your veggies in an even layer on the pan and and drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper.  Roast for 10 minutes, flip them over and roast for approximately 10 more minutes.

That's it!

Sunday, January 18, 2015

An emotional roller coaster...

These 3 shots were all taken in the exact sequence as pictured above...literally snap, snap, snap...probably all within 4 seconds of each other.  It's impressive really, the emotional roller coaster this child lives on! ;)


Friday, January 16, 2015

Well Hello!

It's been almost 2 months since I've posted!  YIKES!

I don't even know what to write about.  It's been busy....and stressful....and exciting.....and busy.  Sooooo...pretty normal I'd say! ;)

I am still going to the Y about 6 days/week.  Still so proud that I've stuck to it.  I am working on being better about eating...I didn't do great with Paleo while we were in Florida just before Christmas, but tried to get back at it when we got back.  I am still only cooking Paleo, but when we go out, I struggle to stick to it.  I am going to get back at it this week though.  Still only Paleo at home, so I'm mostly there!

I am HOPING to run the Bix7...that is my goal this year.  Maybe I'll push for a half marathon in 2016...we'll see.

All I know is that I feel best just after I've worked out.  Why did I wait almost 34 years to make this a part of my life?!  I have done so much more than I ever thought I could back when I started working out in September.  I cannot imagine how much more I will be able to do in another 5 months!  I feel more energetic, healthier and happier.

I am not going to lie...I feel like I am working my ass off and wish the weight would be just falling off, but it IS coming off....just much slower than I had hoped or expected.  I don't weigh myself, so all I know is that my clothes get looser and looser until I need a smaller size and I feel like I've been at a plateau for a while.  Probably because of my poor food choices over the holidays though.  If in a month, I am still feeling like things aren't fitting differently, I may need to change something up.

As far as the family's a damn miracle that Wesley has remained healthy all winter so far!  Where is some wood I can knock on????!!!!  Tate has a scope procedure on his esophagus/stomach in a couple of weeks to try and figure out what is going on with his regular throwing up.  Cason is progressing and doing amazing as usual...and he turned 4 a couple of days ago!  Sean is back at school after his winter break.

So that's what's going on!  Hopefully I won't wait another 2 months before I blog...I want to be better about is just so busy! :/