Wednesday, February 18th, 2015

“In A Minute” Comes Out Of My Mouth To My Daughter Too Often

by Kristen Suzanne in Kristen Suzanne
My sweet daughter patiently waiting for me to play with her.

My sweet daughter patiently waiting for me to play with her.

After a morning of running around to get Kamea fed early enough to get out the door…

to fight traffic so I can get to the farmers’ market in time  (which is across town)…

just to get home in time to unpack the veggies and have a snack …

so I can get to my Deep Stretch and Meditation class on time…

and spending most of my time in the kitchen, when I’m home, because I try to make all meals from scratch…

I just gotta throw up my hands.

I’m going “crackers” as my friend, Myriam,​ would say.

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Saturday, February 14th, 2015

A Starbucks Date With My Husband

by Kristen Suzanne in family, Kristen Suzanne
Greg & Kristen. Valentine's Day 2015. Madly in love.

Greg & Kristen. Valentine’s Day 2015. Madly in love.

Right now I’m in Starbucks, on a date, with my husband, Greg. It’s Valentine’s Day and we carved out some “alone time” while Kamea spends the afternoon with her Nana.

It’s weird though, we’re at Starbucks of all places. We’re in Sun City West area, a retirement community because that’s where mom lives, so there’s not a lot of hot-n-happening places from which to choose. We considered a movie, but strangely, it wasn’t attractive. We couldn’t help but find ourselves with laptops, Justins’ peanut butter cups, green tea, and coffee at Starbucks. (I was secretly hoping they’d have their new coconut milk option but it doesn’t roll out until Tuesday).

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Monday, February 9th, 2015

Three Ommms to Start the Day (and two deep breaths) – Highly Recommend.

by Kristen Suzanne in kamea, Kristen Suzanne, Meditation
Kamea depicts how I feel many mornings.

Kamea depicts how I feel many mornings.

Do you have mornings like me where it’s all go-go-go? I think Kamea’s face shows you perfectly how I am many mornings.

  • Get up!
  • Make coffee! Oh, the dishwasher can be emptied – empty dishwasher while scrambling eggs between going to and fro from dishwasher to cupboards.
  • Get Kamea up, dressed, feed her – wait! No, feed her first and then dress her so she doesn’t get food on clean clothes.
  • Now… brush teeth. I missed brushing them first thing. Darn.
  • Charge phone. Check email quickly and delete the crap.
  • Yadda yadda yadda.

It seems like that is my morning on at least three days a week and it’s just too darn crazy. Man, I think to myself, I gotta slow down more. But who has the time? I certainly don’t want to wake up any earlier because sleep is too precious.

Life shouldn’t be this way.

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Sunday, February 8th, 2015

Our Aging Parents… How Do We Deal?

by Kristen Suzanne in family, Kristen Suzanne
Family. Making memories for all of us, including my daughter.

(Thanksgiving 2014) Family. Making memories for all of us, including my daughter.

I’m suddenly feeling like I’m in a chapter of my life that I’m not ready for and I’m unsettled. It feels weird to write about this but perhaps by writing about it I can gain some insight and peace.

Here’s the thing: I’m getting older which means my parents are getting older, which means I’ll be in a time of my life where my parents won’t be here.

I don’t think I would’ve have paid so much attention to this except that in the past few months, my good friend’s dad’s health started deteriorating to the point where he might pass sooner than later. Then, my step-dad became ill, and long story short, I don’t know if he’ll ever be back the way he was before falling ill, and I don’t know how long I have with him. Even if it’s 5 years or 10 years, he’s changed. Then, my old best childhood friend’s dad suddenly died last month. Just gone. My new good friend’s dad is having difficulties with his heart.

It seems like it’s all around me, and this is the course of life. I get it, but I don’t like it. I know, duh, cuz who would like that? But, seriously, no one told me about this. No one prepared me for it. It’s like I am supposed to expect it because parents get older as you get older, and one day they pass. But, I feel unprepared.

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Saturday, February 7th, 2015

Roasted Asparagus w Blood Orange (a strangely hypnotic fruit)

by Kristen Suzanne in ghee, gluten free, Kristen Suzanne, recipe
Roasted asparagus with blood orange zest

Roasted asparagus with blood orange zest

The farmer’s market not only had gorgeous organic purple and green asparagus yesterday, but they had organic blood oranges. My belly knew those two were destined to be enjoyed together, and last night was the night (as I served it with our last day of Big-Ass Brisket).

The next time you see some fresh asparagus and some oranges, grab them so you can make this dandy little vegetable dish.

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Thursday, February 5th, 2015

Oh, Drambuie. Where Have you Been All My Life? I Love You.

by Kristen Suzanne in family, Kristen Suzanne, Motherhood
Drambuie - my favorite alcohol. Warmth. Gently Sweet. Mmmmmm.

Drambuie – my favorite alcohol. Warmth. Gently Sweet. Packs a punch. Mmmmmm.

Drambuie is a unique blend of aged scotch whiskey, spices, and heather honey, to quote directly from their bottle.

What do I say?

Drambuie is decidedly wonderful and I looooooove it.

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Wednesday, February 4th, 2015

Things I Do At Home with My Four Year Old

by Kristen Suzanne in home school, kamea, Kristen Suzanne
Our "project table" (from IKEA - it has a leaf not shown.

Our “project table” (from IKEA – it has a leaf not shown – so it gets even bigger).

Today, I was inspired to share some of the things I do with my four year old daughter. Our living space isn’t huge but we make the best with what we have. Perhaps, if I didn’t have extra shelves filled with pots and pans taking up space, we’d have more, but that’s not going to happen. I need my pots.

So, here are the things we did today.

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Tuesday, February 3rd, 2015

Here’s What I Order to Get What I Want at True Food Kitchen

True Food - a pretty darn decent place for a quality meal. #RealFood

True Food Kitchen – a pretty darn decent place for a quality meal. #RealFood

Going to restaurants requires some creativity and planning on my part if I’m to be satisfied.

Obviously, for starters, I pick restaurants with (at least) mostly quality food, when possible. One of the places we visit in Scottsdale, AZ is True Food Kitchen because they offer grass fed beef options as well as organic vegetables and dairy (I think the dairy is all organic there – not sure if it’s grass-fed).

The next challenge is making sure I pack necessary items to complete my meal or to make it healthier than it would otherwise be. For example, I’ve been known to bring my own grass-fed butter and MCT oil to restaurants along with the usual things I already carry in my purse like sea salt and organic turmeric powder. I’ve written about how I mod my Chipotle bowl here with a variety of ingredients – check it out.

Still, just going somewhere that has some good ingredients doesn’t mean I’ll want anything on the menu. Luckily, True Food Kitchen likes to satisfy their picky customers, like me, when I take various components from the menu and make my own meal. (They even have a coffee drink called Paleo Coffee which is similar to Bulletproof Coffee in that it’s organic coffee blended with coconut oil and butter.)

Here’s what I do when I eat at True Food Kitchen.

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Monday, February 2nd, 2015

The Dry Erase Whiteboard Babysitter

by Kristen Suzanne in kamea, Kristen Suzanne
Kamea enjoying the dry erase side of her easel.

Kamea enjoying the dry erase whiteboard side of her easel.

My daughter likes to color and do artsy things in general. What 4 year old doesn’t?

So we did what a lot parents do and we bought her an easel to facilitate and encourage those artsy inklings. We bought the Melissa and Doug one featured above. (Turns out there’s a less expensive, and probably just as good, option at IKEA – if I remember correctly. Truth be told when I saw it at IKEA I tried to forget I ever saw one for that price knowing what I spent on mine. So, don’t quote me.)

Having an easel has been terrific. She doesn’t use the chalkboard side much, perhaps because it’s shoved up against that side by the wall. But, then again, who really likes chalk (unless it’s on a sidewalk)? She uses the dry erase whiteboard a lot though. A lot.

She uses the dry erase whiteboard so much, off on her own in a wonderland of drawing, that sometimes I don’t even hear much from her. Translation: I can do something myself like sip on coffee and ponder world peace or wash dishes or close my eyes or waste time on Facebook.

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Thursday, January 29th, 2015

A 1-Minute Gratitude Journal Can Be Better Than Coffee to Wake You Up. (almost)

by Kristen Suzanne in Kristen Suzanne
Coffee + Gratitude Journal. A great way to start the day.

Coffee + Gratitude Journal. A great way to start the day.

I have a gratitude journal that I don’t write in as regularly as I should.

So, I’m not surprised that my gratitude journal is not even half full, and I’ve been using it, based on the dates of some entries, for years. Whoops.

Sad thing is that it’s a really simple and fast exercise… usually takes me less than one minute.

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