Around Here Right Now

It’s a rainy, cold afternoon while I’m writing this, and we’re all cozy inside. Ben’s making apple crisp, and we’re hoping for snow. He made the mistake of telling Everett we’d go to the cabin when the snow melts – he meant in spring, but Everett is just pumped, because the first snowfall is disappearing, so he’s ready to pack up and go to the lake. We’ve been trying to explain the situation to him, but it’s not making any sense to him, so it would simplify our lives quite a bit if we’d just get more snow!;)

I always have a running list of things our family is currently enjoying, and when it gets long enough, I do one of these posts to share our favourites with you! (Affiliate links are included for your convenience) This month’s offerings are about as random as they get, so hopefully there’s a little something for everyone!:)

What We’re Watching: Timeless

Ben and I have really been enjoying this show on Netflix for the last couple of months. Sadly, there’s only one season, and the show was cancelled in spring, but fans raised such an uproar that season two will be filmed in 2018!

The story line involves a stolen time machine, and the bad guys are trying to go back in time to change American history, so the good guys have to take the backup time machine to chase after them, and do whatever they can to ensure history stays the same. Every episode covers a different event in history, from Lincoln’s assassination to the first landing on the moon to the Lone Ranger to the Hindenberg disaster. Because something always goes wrong, and small details of history end up changing in each episode, it’s making us look up these different historical events to brush up on the details. There is some violence, but for the most part, we’ve been impressed with how clean the show is.

Also, if Lucy could please just shave her head and make me a wig with her hair, it would pretty much be my dream come true. I think I commented on her great hair almost every single episode, and Ben was wondering what was up with this hair obsession.

But now we’re finished season one, and I’m sad, and it’s a long time until season two comes out!

What We’re Learning: Historical Fiction

Speaking of history, Anika has been lost in library books for the last week. She came across a historical fiction series called “The Royal Diaries” at the library which includes many of the famous princesses from a wide range of time periods. There are 23 books in the series, and she’s enjoyed every one she’s read. My favourite thing about it, besides just seeing her enjoy good stories, is that it’s reinforcing everything she’s learned in history.When Anika talks about her favourite characters in history, and gets excited about books which shed more light on the background and context to these stories, it makes me happy to see how learning can be fun, and come naturally and enjoyably, instead of just being about dry textbooks.

What We’re Eating: Stir-fry That’s not Stir-fry

I love eating stir-fry, but I don’t like making it. Does anyone else out there feel that way?! I like meals I can stick in the oven and forget about while I clean up the kitchen. While browsing Pinterest for some meal planning inspiration this month, I came across this delicious-looking picture:

source

I suddenly thought, “Why on earth have I been dealing with a frying pan?!” I love roasted vegetables, so I’ve ditched the stir-fry, and do this instead. Easiest meal ever – I get out all the veggies that need to be used up in the fridge, chop them up, spread them out on a cookie sheet, drizzle avocado oil over everything, and stick it in the oven.

And then I’m free to get the kitchen cleaned up before the meal, so afterwards, all we have to do is put our dishes in the dishwasher, and pack up the leftovers for lunch the next day. So easy, and very delicious!

What I’m Reading: The Whole-Brained Child

I’m slowly working my way through “The Whole-Brained Child”, and it’s really good! I don’t have tons of time for reading, but this book is a great fit, because the chapters are pretty short, and the principles are easy to apply. A friend recommended it to me, and her description had me intrigued. She said it was a book about helping your child learn how to deal with strong emotions, and bridging the gap between explosive emotions and logical thinking. Because children’s brains are not finished developing, it does not come naturally for them to think logically and use reason in the midst of an angry tantrum or hurt feelings. They get swept away in whatever emotion they are experiencing in the moment, and so this book provides helpful tools for connected the right and left sides of the brain, or the “upstairs/downstairs” parts of the brain, as they refer to it in the book, helping to bring about more balance and feelings of calm and control.

Even though I’m not very far into the book, I’m already helping it very helpful, and highly recommend it! While getting this blog post ready, I stumbled across this “Refrigerator Sheet” which summarizes some of the helpful points, in case you want to check out a bit of what it has to say!

What I’m Saving $ On: Restore

Last year, I shared about this fantastic product our family uses on a daily basis. It restores gut lining in a way that’s far superior to any kind of probiotics out there, because it doesn’t just put probiotics into your stomach, it actually helps your body to start producing them on it’s own. All of us noticed a dramatic improvement in our digestion when we started taking it, and our girls’ issues with gluten have improved to the point where they are able to enjoy gluten occasionally, although we don’t want their digestive systems to get out of balance again, so we make it more of a treat instead of the norm.

In the past, we ordered Restore from the Restore4Life website, which ended up costing $130 with exchange, tax, duty, and shipping. A bottle lasts for about 1 1/2 months for our family of five, so it’s pricey, but something we feel is important to keep taking.

This last month, I was extremely happy to find a site that sells it for only $100! I felt rich with my $30 savings, so I wanted to pass this info on to you, as I know some people have been ordering Restore since I shared about it on my blog last summer. You can get a 5% discount using this link.

If you’re interested in learning more about it, there are some great videos available here, as well as pictures of what cells look like before and after using Restore.

What We’re Anticipating: Mother Daughter Camp

I’m so excited to share that I’ll be speaking at Mother Daughter Camp at Red Rock Bible Camp in January! It’s been a long time since we’ve gone to camp in winter, and it’s such a great retreat, so I’m really glad to be part of it this year. I’m also very excited about the sessions I’ll be doing, and will have more to share here on my blog as I prepare for the retreat.

To find out more about Mother Daughter Camp, head over here.

What I’m Listening to: “Overwhelmed”

I listened to this fantastic podcast on the weekend. I was feeling discouraged on Saturday, because we’ve had a ton of sickness at our house, and I haven’t been feeling completely healthy for about two months now. My naturopath is trying to get me back on track, but in the meantime, I’ve been struggling to keep a good attitude at all times. I realize there are many, many people with bigger problems than mine, but I also know that wherever we’re at in the moment can feel huge and consuming.

This podcast was exactly what I needed – super encouraging, and such a gentle reminder that when we focus on Jesus, our circumstances might not change, but our perspective always does.

 

 

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Sharing the Love

Anika has always been this blog’s biggest fan. She could spend hours and hours going back over all the pictures, and reading the funny things Kaylia used to say when she was learning how to talk. She skips the “boring” posts (anything written while I’m feeling deep and spiritual), and usually sticks to the pictures. But the other day, she told me it had been too long since I’d written a post about what we’re loving around here right now.

This fall has been good to us – we’ve discovered a whole list of new things to love, so I’m delighted to share them with you today!

Chocolate Hummus

Cheap, fast, easy, and very intensely chocolatey. There, that should be enough to get you pulling out your food processor already. The recipe can be found here, and you’ll have your loved ones happily eating beans. Yes, this is related to black bean brownies, so I understand that it’s a love/hate kind of thing. Fortunately, my family loves it, and the girls are picky when it comes to beans, so this surprises me. There’s also a recipe for Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Hummus on the same site, but we haven’t had time to try it yet, because everyone is so obsessed with the chocolate.

Chocolate Hummus

The Martian

I rarely watch movies anymore, because we prefer to watch a quick show instead, but Ben and I did watch “The Martian” a couple of months ago, and I’ve been wanting to see it again ever since! I loved it, and I didn’t think I would. Usually, I don’t like space movies, but Ben was very sure I would like this one, it’s on Netflix, and the trailer looked promising, so I decided to give it a shot.

It was so good!! Matt Damon stars in it, and it’s a story about an astronaut who is left behind on a mission to Mars. He has to find some way to survive until the next space ship lands on Mars – in four years. Here’s the trailer:

Swiffer Cordless Vacuum

A few years ago, a friend told me to go buy myself a small vacuum to use instead of a broom. It sounded like a good idea, but I just never got around to it, because it didn’t feel like a pressing need.

Oh, my word. If you have hardwood floors, this actually IS a pressing need! We bought it a couple of months ago, and have used it often. It is much faster than sweeping, and I love not having any cord to worry about. It’s so much fun to use, the girls like to vacuum now, and chase Everett around the house with it while he squeals with delight-verging-on-terror. He also loves to be the one controlling the vacuum, and I’m happy he has something to entertain him! If he actually happens to pick up any garbage, even better! Win/win.

Everett vacuuming

Francis Chan’s Bible App

This is an app to use if you want to read through the Bible in a year, and you’d like a better understanding of the background of each book of the Bible. There’s a really cool video at the beginning of a new chapter that breaks down the theme and background of the book. The artwork is fantastic, and it helps explain things very well. I started using this a few weeks ago, and I’m really enjoying it. Plus, I’m a check mark girl, so I like being able to mark it off when I’ve finished my reading. The drawback is that I tend to get into a “finish the reading for the day!” mindset, rather than a “meditate on Scripture” focus, so I’m trying to take time for both.

Francis Chan app

Restore

Last spring, one of my trusted alternative health people told me about this new gut health product called “Restore”, and it only took a couple of weeks of trying it to start noticing it’s benefits. We felt like it gave us a lot of energy, Ben said he didn’t get his mid-afternoon sleepiness, and the girls were able to eat gluten again for the first time six years.

But during the summer, I made a mistake with ordering options, and we ran out of Restore. After a few weeks without it, I felt exhausted, I had issues sleeping, we felt like our digestion was sluggish, the girls went back to getting sick from eating gluten, and we just felt all-around a bit yucky.

We were pretty excited when a new bottle arrived! It took a few weeks to get back to our “new normal”, but we seem to be back on track now!

Besides the fact that it makes us feel great, here are the other things I love about it:

  • No multi-level marketing
  • Not a bad price, compared to some of the other popular products out there. A bottle will last one person for three months, but our family of five goes through one bottle in a month, which costs $109.
  • it seals all the gaps in the intestines within 20 minutes of taking it, and lasts for five hours
  • It restores healthy bacteria in the gut, so it’s recommended not to take probiotics while on Restore. The best probiotics have five to seven strains of good bacteria, but we’re supposed to have 30,000 strains. Restore balances the body, and brings back a much higher variety of bacteria than a bottle of probiotics.
  • the science behind it is available on the website, including pictures of what cells look like before and after using Restore

Here’s a quick video if you want to hear more about it, and it can be ordered here, if you feel like giving it a try! No strings attached.;)

 

And finally, my recent favorite book:

Secrets of the Secret Place

This book is changing my devotions. It’s inspiring, practical, and really beautiful – like this gentle invitation to get away with Jesus on a daily basis. I love practical suggestions for how to bring about change, and this book is full of them. I’m about halfway through, so I’m sure I’ll have more to say once I’ve finished it! I’ve copied out many quotes, but here’s one of my recent favorites:

“The longer you’re in God’s presence, soaking in His word and basking in His love, the more power you’re ingesting into the very fiber of your being. The only way we change is when we come close to the Lord. His presence is the place of change.”

secrets

Well, that’s a super random list of favorites! Let me know if you happen to give anything a try! Share the love.

 

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