Tuesday, October 6th, 2015

My Kid Eats Frozen Food, But Only When I Do This…

by Kristen Suzanne in gluten free, grass fed butter, kamea, recipe
Some damn tasty frozen food that I doctored.

Some tasty frozen food that I doctored.

My kids eats frozen food.

You probably wouldn’t expect me to admit that, but here I am… admitting that. Frozen food? Ewww. But, yeah.

Here’s the short of it.

I’m a mom. I make most things from scratch three times a day. I’m effin’ tired. The end.

There, see? I need a break and I need something at least somewhat decent to feed my kid because she’s just not into green smoothies or protein shakes that much (<– those are quick things that’s why I mention them).

Enter: Amy’s Frozen Mushroom Risotto

Frozen. Food.

Frozen. Food.

Here’s the thing. It doesn’t have any canola oil in it. (<– you know how hard it is to find frozen food without canola?). And, although this particular frozen food has a cheese in it that is probably not grass-fed, I’m not freaking out about it.

Here’s how I make Amy’s more acceptable. I add things to it, like grass-fed butter, and I don’t microwave it.

I get a little soup / sauce pot. (I adore that little pot. I use it to heat water for tea, make sauces, and, well, as you can see, I use it to warm up frozen food from the store.)

Isn't it adorbs?

Isn’t it adorbs?

I add a few splashes of homemade bone broth and a couple tablespoons of grass-fed unsalted butter. The bone broth adds nutrition and helps it cook in the pot, and the butter adds good fat and nutrition.

–> Learn how to easily make your own awesome bone broth here. <–


Small pot. Bone broth. Butter.

Small pot. Bone broth. Butter.


Frozen food puck. I try not to cringe when I see it.

Frozen food puck.

Ooh. Idea. I could add Amy’s frozen foods to my camping list I wrote about here.


Nifty glass lid on cute little pot on induction hot plate. Love induction.

Nifty glass lid on cute little pot on induction hot plate. Love induction.

I should note that I cook this thing over low heat. (BTW induction hot plates are great. I transformed my kitchen with them.)


Ta-Da. Frozen boxed food made partially acceptable with butter and broth.

Frozen food made more acceptable with butter and broth.


PS. There seem to be some decent frozen options out there these days, with grass-fed meats, no canola oil, etc. I haven’t tried them but it’s interesting to see the options coming to market.

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Monday, September 28th, 2015

Got Kids? Popsicle Sticks For Hours of CHEAP Fun – Epic Fun House

by Kristen Suzanne in family, kamea, Motherhood
Epic fun house from popsicle sticks and creativity.

Epic fun house from popsicle sticks and creativity.

My husband gets credit for this post. Using popsicle sticks to create what has turned out to be an epic fun house was his idea. He wanted to teach Kamea a bunch of skills and concepts in a way that’s accessible to a 4-year-old, as well as convey that activities don’t all have to be pre-packaged, that you can do big amazing stuff with simple objects. He’s very big on teaching her to use things for their unintended purposes (to teach lateral thinking), kind of like “coloring outside the lines” on steroids. Also, he wanted her to engage in a multi-month project to augment the single-serving creative sessions we usually do. There’s something about seeing a project grow and expand over time into wild directions, some planned and some unplanned.


And, so, I share this crazy fun idea with you, parents, out there if you’re in need of a creative activity and long-term project for kids. Keep in mind though, it requires some participation from you, the parents, but it’s easy and relaxed fun. Even mindfully meditative, at times.

My husband bought a bunch of popsicle sticks, and he started gluing them together with Kamea (she’s five years, but this project started while she was four).

Excited to get to work on the fun house.

Excited to get to work on the fun house.


The house started to really take on quite a life for itself and they started to decorate it with paint, stickers, markers, clay, found objects from the recycle bin, and much more. They also incorporated colored popsicle sticks. It’s become the center of attraction for play-dates as kids stare at it in awe. In fact, so do the parents!





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Wednesday, September 16th, 2015

Experiment in Non-Sedentary Living: Moving All Day vs. 1-Hour in the Gym

Hikes are becoming routine to increase our movement.

Hiking for more movement.

In spite of going to the gym for an hour a day, most days, I feel like my life is missing more movement. But, how could that be? I go to the gym almost daily. Surely that’s adequate.

Or, is it?

I took a look at our lives recently and realized there’s just too much sitting… whether it’s eating food at the table, working on computers, playing video games, watching TV, or reading, I had to admit that we’re members of the species homo sedentarius.

Sitting this much just doesn’t feel right. And research says that “sitting is the new smoking,” meaning deadly… even for people who exercise daily! Yikes.

So, on a whim I suggested to Greg that we get rid of our couch, which would make us move more. It was just an idea that made sense to me.

He wasn’t buying it. I mean, who doesn’t have a couch?

Well! Turns out, I’m not the only one to think about this. Apparently there is a movement (pun intended) known as “furniture-free” and I can’t help but be intrigued. There’s even experts on the topic. When Greg heard Katy Bowman, ummm, an expert, he realized it wasn’t just a crazy idea of mine – people are doing this.

Long story short, we got rid of our couch. (Gasp!)

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Tuesday, September 15th, 2015

A Day Without My Kid – What To Do?

by Kristen Suzanne in kamea, Kristen Suzanne, Meditation, Motherhood
Mom's Secret Zen Garden - a place for play, imagination, or meditation.

Mom’s Secret Zen Garden – a place for play, imagination, or meditation.

Mom is taking Kamea for the night, which really means I get all day today, all night, and most of tomorrow to be child-free. Kamea loves going to mom’s sort-of citrus orchard, especially now that they’re creating a zen secret garden of it  – statues, wind chimes galore, and hummingbirds a plenty.

So, what shall I do today? My list is long with much that I can blast through… things like…

  1. Blog
  2. Follow up emails
  3. Make new recipes for my maybe new book
  4. Make kelp capsules
  5. Go to Trader Joe’s
  6. Make liver pate
  7. Qigong
  8. Yoga
  9. Meditate
  10. Read about qigong, yoga, and meditation
  11. Clean
  12. Shower and blow dry my hair
  13. Dinner alone with Greg


I could just lay lie on the floor and stare at the ceiling for 30 hours.


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Friday, June 19th, 2015

Pomegranate Black Raspberry (Nutrient) Gummies – Healthy For All Ages

Pomegranate Black Raspberry Gummy Cubes. #Fun

Pomegranate Black Raspberry Gummy Cubes. #Fun

I’m fascinated with making gummies, using my own healthy ingredients, because they’re an excellent (and fun!) vehicle for getting extra nutrition in my daughter’s body (and, really, the whole family).

Now that there is a reputable source that I trust for collagen/gelatin, I make them regularly.

Let’s talk about that source a bit…

You all know I’m a fan of Dave Asprey’s Upgraded products – I use most of them regularly in my life. Bulletproof Coffee, anyone?

He recently came out with a collagen that has gelatin in it for making gummies and other delicious foods like chocolate pudding. I’m a fan.

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Saturday, May 16th, 2015

Stop Neglecting Ourselves Now To Help Our Children (As Adults) in the Future.

by Kristen Suzanne in exercise, family, kamea, longevity, Meditation


Kamea and I having fun.

Kamea and I having fun.

I’m thinking about the strain we parents put on ourselves when we prioritize our children’s well-being so much that we neglect ourselves.

We forsake our own health. 

That doesn’t feel right to me. Isn’t that the wrong way to live?

I’m reminded of how airplane flights start with the following, “Put your mask on first so that you can better assist others.” Those seem like smart words by which to live.

However, the idea of putting children first is natural to many of us. But here’s the thing… if we neglect ourselves we can set ourselves up for illness in the future, when our kids are adults.

We harm our own health now because we “don’t have time” to care for ourselves properly, only to turn around and put the awful stress and strain on our children when they are adults and need to take care of us.

I know friends who are caring for their unwell elderly parents. It’s hard on my friends. Very hard.

It makes me wonder… if those ill parents had better managed their health (I know some didn’t know any better, but we do!), then would they be experiencing old age with more strength, and not depending on their kids to take care of them so much? Would they be less of a stress on my friends who care for them? I think so. 

This inspires me to care for myself and make it a priority. I take time to eat well, get quality rest, meditate, and exercise. It means making adjustments to my schedule so I get the needed “me time.” This will create a healthier future-me so I don’t put that stress on Kamea to care for me (when she’s an adult and I’m an old lady). I plan to live over 100 years after all. That said, when I reach 110, all bets are off. 

Plus, and this is a big plus… kids learn by example. How can I expect my daughter prioritize her own health and well being, if I’m not doing it myself?

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Saturday, May 2nd, 2015

Enjoying a Cup of Bulletproof Coffee w My Daughter

Starting her morning right. #BulletproofCoffee

Starting her morning right. #BulletproofCoffee

I started enjoying coffee when I was 7 years old. I remember the first time fondly as it represented my entrance into maturity. ;) I was at my Nana’s and, well, I simply asked her if I could have some coffee. Being 100% Italian, she said, “Of course!” (She also taught me how to shave my hairy Italian legs around the same age. Gotta love Nana(s).)

I was hooked from there. The warm deliciousness that marked my initiation into something cool. The next chapter of my life. A Coffee Drinker.

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Monday, April 27th, 2015

Kid-Friendly Breakfast: Scrambled Eggs, Herbs, and Banana

Eggs Herbs Banana. Who knew?!

Eggs Herbs Banana. Who knew?!

Eggs are a big part of our house. Big. Huge.

Why? Ummm… TASTE! No, that’s not all…

They offer quality nutrition for the brain and bodylecithin, saturated fat, cholesterol, retinol (the good form for vitamin A for immunity, beautiful skin, and healthy eyes), omega fatty acids, vitamin e, and more. We only buy pasturer-raised eggs, because those hens are treated well and their eggs are more nutritious.

I’m glad that Kamea is a fan of scrambled eggs – her growing body benefits. She especially loves them when I mix stuff into them like today.

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Saturday, April 25th, 2015

My First Pinterest Inspired Art Project (EASY Kid Fun)

by Kristen Suzanne in family, home school, kamea
Painting our Pinterest inspired art project.

Painting our Pinterest inspired art project.

More often than not I tune out the moms gushing about Pinterest inspiring their kiddos birthday parties, home decorations, or art projects. It’s just too much for me. I mean, who has time for that? Surfing Pinterest, getting supplies, and then making all of those projects? Good grief.

Well, there’s a first time for everything I guess.

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Wednesday, April 22nd, 2015

My Latest Obsession – Organic Freeze Dried Blueberries. Light Crunchy Nutrition.

by Kristen Suzanne in blueberries, kamea, kids
My latest love: crunchy, light, nutritious, and delicious.

My latest love: crunchy, light, nutritious, and delicious.

These little freeze-dried wild blueberries (organic) are my latest obsession.

Here’s the backstory: We’ve been dabbling in the organic freeze-dried fruit options (berries, primarily) the past month, because Kamea (my 4 year old) really loves them. I can’t find any fault with them. They’re convenient, organic, don’t require thawing, and I’m guessing pretty nutritious (I’m presuming they retain some nutritional value after undergoing the freeze-dried process. If anyone knows any better, please advise – that said, they’re still a decent little snack).

We were buying a brand sold at Whole Foods Market, Just Tomatoes, which offers many different kinds of berries.  Kamea loves the Just Tomatoes – Cherries. But, their blueberries leave a bit to be desired. In my attempt to save money, by shopping on Amazon to restock the freeze-dried goodness, I stumbled upon these Nova Scotia freeze-dried wild blueberries. They’re not necessarily cheaper but they’re tastier.

Totally love at first bite.

For starters, they actually taste like blueberries. Almost better, the texture is light, airy, and delightful. My favorite part is when I stumble on a cluster of them in the bag. Mmmmmm yum. We are raving fans of this brand for freeze-dried organic blueberries.

Kamea eats these by the handful. My favorite way is in whole-fat, organic, grass-fed yogurt, as pictured above (I add raw almonds, too). They’d also be great on ice cream. Or, toss some on top of your next salad.

Such a good kiddo (and mama-on-the-go) snack. Go get some.

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