Wednesday, 25 November 2015

nine day detox - day 1~3

i have noticed a distinct lack of waist these last few months... a bad habit of evening snacking taking on a whole new level {i ate a packet of pork pies one night after my pilates class}
so, i decided to do the nine day forever living aloe vera cleanse - c9 for short. here is how i got on...

day one ~
i took all my measurements and weighed myself and noted it all down in the special booklet that came in the pack.  this wee booklet is packed with ideas to help you with the cleanse, but it also has step by step tick~boxes to make sure you keep to the plan! which has been really helpful in motivating me to keep going ~ making notes as you go along is a great way to keep you focused on the task at hand!
so, the first day was tough ~
breakfast was two garcinia tablets, 120mls of forever aloe gel and one forever therm, with plenty of water!
the garcinia cambogia is a tree native to southeast asia, the fruit from it is known to help reduce the conversion of carbohydrate to fats, lower cholesterol and aid metabolism. 
the therm tablets are full of vitamins, nutrients and botanicals to reduce fatigue and aid metabolism.
the gel has numerous beneficial properties; a rich source of nutrients, it provides the perfect supplement to a balanced diet.
for snack i had a drink {diluted down fruit juice}with some of the forever fiber dissolved into it. yum.
lunch was the same as breakfast but you get to have a forever lite ultra shake, which i mixed with 300ml of skimmed milk and added frozen berries, it was delicious!
the powder is packed with vitamins and minerals it is great as a meal supplement or as a protein shake if you are trying to build muscle.

the evening meal is just two garcinia tablets and 120mls of gel...
so, not a lot of food consumed today & i am definitely noticing a low level grumble in my tummy almost constantly. but it is okay because the c9 program allows you to eat as many free foods throughout the day as you need to keep hunger at bay.... free foods are things like apples, peppers, tomatoes, lettuce, grapes etc.
just before bed i got to drink another 120ml of the gel ~ which i am mixing with the forever berry nectar as i prefer the taste of that {the kids and i drink it everyday already so my stomach likes it!}

day two ~
today was the same as day one, again, not much food consumed today either! but on the whole i feel okay!
felt a little light headed this afternoon but an apple and some grapes helped tide me over til my evening meal of aloe gel and suppliments!
tonight was particularly tricky as i had a parents committee meeting and there was wine and snacks on offer... i was very good and managed to sip on a water instead. i can't wait for tomorrow when i can eat an actual meal! ooh... what shall i have?

day three ~
so, this is where it gets exciting! i was allowed a shake for breakfast alongside my garcinia, aloe gel and therm tablets... i made it with bananas and took it on the school run. i felt very energised this morning, really keen to get on with the day!

my evening meal was to be 600 calories. i had slow cooked lamb with kidney beans and lots of veg on a bed of pasta, it was so good! i felt full really quickly... but then i just wanted to keep eating... i wanted to eat cake and crisps and have tea and biscuits! it was like i had opened the flood gates!
i managed to resist and had a carrot instead!
really noticing that i am wee-ing a lot more than usual! must be the detox working... i have also noticed my skin working hard to repair itself ~ a few little dry areas appearing as it flushes out the toxins.
i got to measure myself again today and alongside a few lost inches i have noticed a real change in my shape! {i will post all the stats at the end!}

*disclaimer ~ the above links will take you to my FLP selling page.

Monday, 23 November 2015

slow cooker ~ lamb

this recipe is so good... it takes eight hours in the slow cooker but that just means that once you have prepared it, you can leave it to cook until your meal at night.

so, first off i scored the meat and pushed some crushed garlic and rosemary into the 'pockets'. then i browned the meat, a quick fry on all sides in a hot pan.

into the crock pot it goes

using the oil from the pan, fry up some chopped shallots or onions until soft.  pour in a slosh of wine {*this is obviously optional but delicious!) a cup of stock {homemade or cubed} a handful of bay leaves and a few sprigs of rosemary. bring to the boil.

once the liquid has reduced by about a third, pour it into the crockpot.

cook for 6hrs on LOW. then turn the lamb and add in a tin of flageolet beans {or any bean you fancy really! except baked beans... although i reckon they would be pretty tasty too!}

cook for a further 2 and a quarter hours on LOW.  the lamb and beans may not be covered entirely by liquid during the cooking process but that is okay :)

let the lamb rest for 10mins and serve with the beans and sauce with some sauteed potatoes and plenty of fresh steamed veg.


Friday, 23 October 2015

ooh aloe

i have posted about living simply and using natural products where possible, i have posted about aloe vera before and about it's many uses but the more i read about it and the more i use it, the more it amazes me!
you don't even need any fancy products off the shelf... you just need the plant! slice the leaves length ways to remove the inner gel.

it has been used as part of beauty regimes for over 6,000 years... cleopatra used it on her skin, the native americans call it the 'wand of heaven' and egyptians, the 'plant of immortality'.

so, i decided to make a list of all it's amazing uses ~

topically for skin conditions such as eczema, rosacea, psoriasis, pigmentation, sunburn, dry skin and frostbite.

use the inner sides of the leaf as a biodegradable body scrub in the shower.

aloe gel, when drunk, may serve as a treatment for heartburn, ulcers, digestive discomfort, osteoarthritis, diabetes and treating the effects of radiation therapy. i would recommend this be bought from the shop in the form of an aloe drink.

when drunk it can also reduce cholesterol, triglycerides and blood sugar levels

it can be warmed in a bowl of hot water, and inhaled as a vapor for treatment of asthma.

makeup remover.

reduces bruising

aloe can even replace your hair conditioner.

prevents itching from bug bites.

aloe is able to kill bacteria as well as speed wound healing.

the clear gel inside the leaf contains over 75 different key nutritional compounds such as mineral, vitamins and amino acids.

it is anti-inflamitory, antibacterial, antifungal and antiseptic.

and i use it for almost all of those things in one way or another! i drink it and i use it as a toothpaste, a hand wash, a face cream and an antibacterial hand gel... lip balm, shampoo, conditioner...

visit my forever aloe fb page for more information on the products and where to buy them...

Saturday, 17 October 2015

sticky fingers

today i decided that we would make fudge! chocolate fudge! of all things, this recipe could not be more messy and sticky and delicious... even if it tried! oh so delicious!

and, if you have a slow cooker... oh so simple...

pour one can of condensed milk into your crock pot, add two big bars of chocolate {the cheaper the better, believe it or not!} a tbsp of vanilla essence and a tbsp of butter. set the oven to high for an hour and check on it every ten mins or so to give it a stir and make sure everthing is melting together.
pour into a tray and leave to set... we added some mini smarties to the top... you know, because it clearly needs more sugar!

this makes some really tasty washing up {licking the bowl and spoon of course} which was obviously a high point for the two small helpers i had... but the waiting for it to set was almost too much to bear! for all of us!

this cuts well, it's soft, it's sweet and it tastes just like the kind you would buy in a shop. this is going to be a staple in this house!

Tuesday, 8 September 2015

untucked shirts

my wee baby girl started school this week... well she started a week and a half ago but was only in for half days.  this week she was in for the full day and had to negotiate the lunch hall solo... i can barely believe it. where has those five fast years gone? so much has changed. so much has happened. in the blink of an eye.

there have been no tears.  a tightly held hand and a few lost looks. but no tears. i am not entirely sure if it is a good thing... well, it is. it shows she is confident and independent. it shows that i have prepared her for such a big step.
but i feel a sense of sadness, as if she no longer needs me. as if i have somehow been holding her back all these years when all she really wanted to do was to be out in the big world learning and discovering new things... but that's not true... yes, she is so ready for this. but at the end of a busy day playing with her new friends, she runs to hug me just as she always has... a look of sheer joy in her eyes. she holds my hand so tightly as we walk home, she skips and sings and tells me all about her day...

and so a new chapter begins.

Saturday, 8 August 2015

two ingredient pizza

i found a great recipe online the other day... two ingredient pizza. i have to say i was dubious... but thought i would give it a whirl.

pinnies on, hands washed, table covered. all set.

the kids love baking and so do i but it can get messy... a recipe which only needs two things is just perfect for small helpers!

one cup of natural yoghurt and one cup of flour. that is all. and look... delicious and yummy and easy and healthy... ish.

we used a bit more flour than the one cup as the dough seemed a little wet still and gave it a good kneed for about ten minutes, rolled it out and then added our toppings... red pesto, cheese, tomatoes, mushrooms, olives and chicken. i had pre chopped all the toppings and had them out so the kids could help themselves. they had a lot of fun and they ate every last bite!

Monday, 3 August 2015

quiet time

today we made relaxation jars... water, food colouring, a spot of gelatine and lots and lots of glitter...

and we used them after lunch to wind down.  it seemed to work! both the kids enjoyed watching the glitter settle to the bottom and then shake it up again and watch it settle all over again. sometimes i forget how simple things need to be for small children... they don't really need all singing, all dancing toys... the more basic and open ended the toy or project, the better. and this just proves it.

they stayed in their rooms for an hour quietly playing and it was only when they paired up again later in the afternoon that the fisty cuffs started up! oh well!

a few nights ago i introduced a new book to poppy, 'it's always there' by lou lou rose
it is such a lovely book, and just reading it through slowly and lying in bed with poppy made me feel calmer and ready to rest... poppy actually nudged me a little while later to tell me to get out of her room now as i was snoring! oops.
{the book is about a little girl who has a secret. the secret is her breath. whenever she feels sad or upset or worried she just focuses on her breathing and she feels better.}

i noticed poppy putting her hand on her tummy a few times today and i like to think she was being mindful of her breath. it certainly calmed her down in the moment.

i often talk about my emotional little girl, a five year old who feels things so strongly and so fully that she finds it hard to cope.
it is so frustrating as an adult to watch her and to feel so helpless. but i know this is something she has to work through on her own. i never want her to feel that she has to hide her feelings... or that there is anything wrong with anger or frustration.  feelings of all sorts are totally normal and we just need to find a way to deal with them in our own way.

i know that when babies are born, their brain is very basic and instinctual up to toddler hood. it is this time in a child's life that is so important... dealing with emotions in a positive way and re-programming the brain to think instead of react. it is hard. but when you see your child stop in her tracks and place her hand on her tummy to breath {where normally she would scream and yell and throw}... well, it just makes it all worth while.

tonight we will combine the book with the glitter jars and i am going to talk to her about feelings and how if you let them settle everything becomes clearer...

something i need to remember myself sometimes.