Sunday, January 13, 2019

3 Easy Plant-Based Meals

Our family loves to cook and bake.  We each have our own different specialties.  I like mostly brekkies and snacks.  Kris loves mostly entrees and any recipe from Chloe Coscarelli, she even has nicknamed her Lexus: "Chloe".  Bree is the baking and dessert specialist, she definitely could win awards with her creations.
I haven't posted many recipes in a while, so here are 3 easy plant-based meals.

This is my weekend go-to recipe:

Tofu Potato Scramble
1-16 oz Extra Firm tofu.
3 large organic potatoes.
1-2 cups diced red,yellow, green bell peppers.
 1 small onion diced.
In a large skillet(cast iron preferably) slowly heat the diced onions in a small amount of  oil until softened.  Add the diced bell peppers. Let simmer, while you cut the potatoes into 1/2 -3/4 inch sized cubes.  Add the potatoes to skillet, turning up the heat to medium/high and let cook until they are tender.  Add salt and pepper. Cover to cook more evenly.  In another skillet, on medium heat, add oil and crumble the tofu block into chunks.  Sprinkle with turmeric, smoked paprika, salt and pepper,  Mix together until tofu is consistently the color of scrambled eggs. Heat for a few minutes and add together with the potatoes and bell peppers.  Sprinkle a several large tablespoons of Nutritional Yeast on top for a wonderful healthy cheesy flavor.  Top with organic ketchup.  This makes enough for 2-4 people with leftovers.

Bree created this one for a quick lunch or dinner:

Mexican Fiesta Bowl

Organic brown rice.
2 16 oz cans of Jackfruit in water or brine(not syrup)
1 can organic black beans.
1 bag organic sweet corn.
Handful of organic cherry tomatoes.
Homemade guacamole

Cook some brown rice according to label directions in vegetable broth for a great flavor.  Pre-heat oven to 325'
At the same time drain and rinse the jackfruit.  Break the chunks apart into stringy pieces.  Squeeze to remove excess water and place into bowl.  In a small bowl mix 2 tb olive oil, 2 tb brown sugar, 2 tb maple syrup, juice of 1/2 of a lemon, 1 tsp each onion and garlic powder, 1/2 tsp each of salt, nutmeg, pepper and 1 tb nutritional yeast.  Mix well and form into a paste. Add jackfruit and combine until evenly coated.  Bake on lined sheet for 30 minutes.

The brown rice and jackfruit will most likely be done at the same time.
Heat corn and black beans.
In a bowl mix the brown rice with beans and corn, topped with roasted jackfruit, guacamole and sliced cherry tomatoes.
Top with sweet chili sauce or non-dairy sour cream/yogurt.

There will be leftovers to enjoy for another meal,

Kris prepared this awesome dish from Chloe a few weeks ago and we are having it again tonight:

Maple Roasted Brussels Sprouts

1-1 1/2 lbs Brussels Sprouts
1/4 cup olive oil.
3/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper.
2 tb maple syrup

Trader Joe's Basmati Rice Medley
Fresh Pomegranate seeds.
Raw sunflower seeds.

Prerheat oven to 375'
Remove any yellow or brown outer leaves, cut off the stems and cut in half.  In a large bowl, toss sprouts, oil, salt and pepper together.  Once coated in oil place on baking pan.  Roast for 15 minutes,  prepare the rice according to directions,  stir Brussels sprouts with spoon or spatula and roast for 30 minutes more.  Stir once more and drizzle maple syrup over the top.  Roast for 15 minutes more or until tender.

Serve over a bed of rice and top with pomegranate and sunflower seeds. 

We obtained all these ingredients from Trader Joe's!

If you are looking for some easy healthy recipes and the vegan pantry essentials please check out The Happy Pear 

Have A great week.

Sunday, January 6, 2019

Recommended Reading 01/06/19

Making New Year resolutions is a great idea, but it always seems we stick to them for a few short weeks and then we are back to old habits.  This year, let's break that chain and really make some life-changing decisions and follow through with them.  If we can redirect the energy from our bad habits into something more productive for a long enough period of time, we can form new good habits.  

My first recommendation is:
Wellth, a wonderful book by the founder of, Jason Wachob.  This is great starting place for creating new habits and a balanced healthy life.
If you have gone through sh*t in your life, haven't we all, it would be a safe bet it is nothing like what David Goggins  has been through.  I have listened to a few podcasts with this, tell it like it is, quit whining, stop asking questions and just f-ing do it, incredible person.  His book "Can't Hurt Me: Master Your Mind and Defy The Odds" will make you have a totally different outlook on what you can accomplish in life.  It is also available in audio version with many commentary extras, which I am listening to at the moment.  

 Are you a runner?  Do you like history?  There is more to the origin of the "marathon" then you think.   Road To Sparta is a very interesting book by Ultra marathoner Dean Karnazes.

Foggy, Anxious, Irritable?,  here's what toxins can do to your brain. 
Wabi Sabi,  This philosophy will help you embrace change and accept the past.
Get Off the Crack!: 8 ways to cut sugar from our diets.  We know that sugar is the root of many chronic diseases.
You should incorporate more flaxseeds into your diet.  Full of heart-healthy fats and fiber rich.

On the environmental side:
This company is turning sewage into fuel with no carbon emissions.
This one really hits home with me: Stop Tossing Your Banana Peel On The Trail
Conservation International's Nature Is Speaking: Forest

For some happy thoughts: 
Thoughts of Dog on twitter @dog_feelings
i found a really good stick, but i chewed it too hard and it broke in half.  which was disappointing until i realized now i have two sticks. today has been an emotional roller coaster.


Have a great week.

Sunday, December 30, 2018

Year End Quotes

"Change in the world comes from individuals,  from the inner peace in individual hearts.  Just as ripples spread out when a single pebble is dropped into water, the actions of individuals can have far-reaching effects"  Dalai Lama

2018 is slipping away and a New Year is on the horizon.  I am striving that my actions will make meaningful changes in my life.  Those actions will become the hope of a better life and relationship with those I love.  By being a better "me", possibly I can contribute to creating a better world.

Motivational quotes are great, but we need to put those thoughts into action.  Motivation only lasts until we do something about it.   By putting those words into "action" is when they became beneficial.

Not in any given order here are some of my favorite quotes:  
"Remember that time complaining got you somewhere? Yeah, me neither.  Nothing beats planning, persistance and hard work.  Joe DeSena
"In every walk with nature, one receives far more than he seeks"  John Muir
"Before you heal someone, ask him if he's willing to give up the things that made him sick" Hippocrates
"Only those who risks going to far can possibly find out how far they can go" T.S.Lewis
"It is health that is real wealth and not pieces of gold and silver" Mahatma Gandhi
"The only real stumbling block is the fear of failure.  In cooking you've got to have a what the-the-hell attitude"  Julia Child
"Just keep in mind: the more we value things outside our control, the less control we have"  Epictetus
"It's not about being perfect.  It's about being the best you at this moment."
"We're here on this planet for a short time.  Let's get some shit done while we're here."  Joe DeSena
"If it is not right, do not do it.  If it is not true, do not say it"  Marcus Aurelius
"Let each thing you would do, say or intend, be like that of a dying person"  Marcus Aurelius
"It's not what happens to somebody, it's what they do as a result of it"  John Joseph
"The mind is everything..what you think you become"  Buddha
"Obstacles don't block the path.  They are the path"  Spartan Creed
"Let not your mind run on what you lack as much as on what you have already"  Marcus Aurelius
"Your mind as an obstacle is harder to overcome than any physical challenge.  It's not possible to outrun it.  But you can exhaust it into submission."  Spartan Creed
"Sure you can dream of success.  Or you can get your ass up and go make it happen."  Joe DeSena
"Since the Universe has no center, you can't be the center of it."
"We don't abandon our pursuits because we despair of ever perfecting them"  Epictetus
"The best revenge is not to be like your enemy"  Marcus Aurelius
"Looking backwards fucks with your neck" Gary Vanyerchuk
"Each morning we are born again.  What we do today is what matters most"  Buddha
"Ask yourself at every moment, Is this necessary?"  Marcus Aurelius
"Never cease to act because you fear you may fail"  Queen Lili'uokalani
"The mind is a fertile garden that will grow what you choose, weeds or flowers."  Bruce Lee 

For every stranger you see, imagine this person is carrying their own struggles, griefs, losses, triumphs and sense of adventure as a child.  
When you see them say, "just like me"  Notice what happens.

What's past is past, nothing can change that.  But the future can be different if we choose to make it so.  We have to cultivate a vision of a happier, more peaceful future and make the effort now to bring it about.  This is no time for complacency, hope lies in the actions we take.

May 2019 be a new beginning for how I can be a better "me" so we can be a better "us.

Have a Happy New Year


Sunday, December 23, 2018

Take A Breath

Before the Holidays begin and we all come together to celebrate..."Take a breath"   Not all family and friends are on the same page with their beliefs and ideas.  This is a re-post from a couple of years back which may help you through the next week and gently into a positive new habit.

Breathe In, Breathe Out

Our bodies need oxygen to survive.  Healthy blood plasma is at least 90% oxygen.  Nothing happens anywhere in our bodies without oxygen.  It is required in just about every chemical reaction,  it  ignites the activity in our cells.  It is the spark of life for us. Over the next few weeks I am going be posting about the importance of oxygenation.

Breathing is an involuntary act.  We don't think much about it, until we don't have it.  Surfing for over 40 years, I have had my share of being pinned to bottom after being thrown off a wave or being held under what seemed like endless thick white water.  Clawing my way to the top to get some much needed oxygen, just to be hit by another large wave and repeating the process.  All you want is a deep breath of air.  

Our breath helps us to gauge how comfortable or uncomfortable we are at that moment.  When we are stressed, frightened or ill we tighten our bodies and breathe faster.  When relaxed calm or happy we soften our bodies and our breathing slows.  This why it is important to learn to slow our breathing and help ourselves to get as much oxygen as we can.  Ancient yoga teaches us that we are given a certain amount of breaths for our individual life span. The slower we breath, the longer we live.  This is not to say we shouldn't breathe heavy as in exercise or teaching our lungs to expand for more oxygen capacity.  This means that when we know how to work with our breath, we can change our mood, manage panic attacks and even lower our blood pressure.  Not only is breathing meditative and good for calming stress, it also improves brain and immune system function, cleanses our bodies of toxins and purifies our minds.  

A simple way to start training our mind and body to slow the breathing is a method called 5-5-5-5. Start doing this in the morning upon waking.  In a sitting position inhale slowly thru your nose on a count of 5, then hold your breath for a count of 5, slowly exhale thru your mouth, and finally count to 5 with no breathing at all(emptying your lungs). do this for 5-15 minutes per day.  You can do this in the evening also to slowly unwind from your daily routine to prepare for a restful night.

Try this for a week and see how you feel.

Happy Holidays.

Thursday, December 20, 2018

Action Brings Hope

Action brings hope.   
Those words ring true in every aspect of our lives.   We all hope to live a happier life.   We all hope to be healthy.   We all hope to be loved.  But without action there is no hope.   It all starts with me and you.  Everyday, we make the choices that will create our lives.   Make the right ones.

15 year old Greta Thunberg from Sweden is speaking truth, not only about Climate change, but about everyday choices.

"Change in the world comes from individuals,  from the inner peace in individual hearts.  Just as ripples spread out when a single pebble is dropped into water, the actions of individuals can have far-reaching effects"  Dalai Lama

Saturday, December 15, 2018

Beans,Beans Are Good For Your Heart.....

Beans, beans are good for your heart....

We all have heard that saying before, but according to an extensive study by the American Institute for Cancer Research they recommend eating whole grains and legumes(beans, chickpeas, soybeans, split peas or lentils) at EVERY meal.  Not every week or day, but every meal!  Legumes are loaded with protein, iron, and zinc as you might expect from other protein sources such as meat but legumes contain nutrients that concentrated in the vegetable kingdom, including fiber, folate and potassium.  You get the best of both worlds with beans, all the while enjoying foods that are low in saturated fat, sodium and cholesterol-free.  Along with rice they are very inexpensive, especially in bulk.  Consumption of beans is associated with lower blood pressure, regulation of blood sugar, and insulin levels.  They also reduce the risk of stroke, depression and colon cancer.  The phytoestrogens in soy, such as tofu and tempeh (great/easy: tempeh chicken salad recipe) help to prevent breast cancer and  breast cancer survival.  Beans can be added to any meal, snacks and the main dish.  The possibilities are endless.

Here are a few of my easy bean recipes:
For a little more effort:

For more (27) easy recipes check out Blue Zones: Turn 1 Can of Beans Into 27 Easy Meals


Have a great week.

Sunday, December 2, 2018

Recommended Reading 12/02/18

The year is almost over and here is the latest list of recommendations.
Lets get started with wellness
Here's another reason to change to a plant-based diet: Superbugs Found in More Then 3/4 of Supermarkets Meat
If you are not a coffee lover you might want to give this a try.  (I like both!);Better than coffee? Yerba Matte
A great article from Forks Over Knives on how a woman battling MS changed her diet and her life.
For a quick healthy dessert: Berry Chocolate Chia Pudding.
We all need this: Secrets To Cultivating a Happier Life by Kris Carr.

Next up environmental news
What's going on with all the fires out west: 6 Trends to Know About Fire Season in The Western U.S.
Spread the word: protecting mangroves has never been more important: Share The Facts About Mangroves
More corporations need to follow Patagonia's example: Our Urgent Gift to the Planet

For the long reads:


Have a great week.