Wednesday, November 04, 2015

Cabbage Soup (Gluten and MSG Free)

Cabbage soup has become one of my favourites.  It can be such a heart soup with lots of flavour.  We just finished getting out the last of the cabbages and carrots from the garden so this has been a great way to enjoy them.

  • 1/2 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 diced onion
  • 3 minced garlic
  • 1 pound grass fed ground beef
  • 4 cups vegetable, beef or even chicken broth*
  • 2-3 cups peeled and diced tomatoes
  • 4-5 cups diced cabbage
  • 2-3 cups diced carrots
  • 1/2 cup diced celery
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/2 cup brussel sprouts (optional)
  • cayenne pepper to taste
  • ground pepper to taste


  1. In a large pot heat oil.  Fry onion for 5 minutes until soft.  Add garlic and beef.  
  2. Cook beef until browned on the outside.
  3. Add all remaining ingredients.
  4. Bring to a boil and then simmer for 30 minutes or until vegetables are tender.
  5. Serve.

*check broth ingredients, most store bought broths have MSG hidden in their ingredients

Thursday, October 29, 2015

Coconut Rough (Dairy, Gluten, Grain and Refined Sugar Free)

Yeah a simple chocolate treat!  I love making this recipe.  It takes such little time and can be easily adapted to include other nuts, seeds and flavours.  These are full of good fats which will help your digestion, energy, skin, thyroid, hormones, metabolism, immune system and brain.  Go ahead, enjoy!

  • 1/2 cup coconut oil
  • 1/3 cup raw cocao or cocoa powder
  • 1 1/2 cup unsweetened shredded coconut 
  • 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
  • 2-3 tablespoon maple syrup or honey (amount depending on desired sweetness)
  1. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper.
  2. In a small pot, on very low heat, melt coconut oil until a liquid.
  3. Remove from heat.
  4. Add all remaining ingredients and stir until well blended.
  5. Pour batter onto prepared cookie sheet.
  6. Place in freezer to harden for 45-60 minutes.
  7. Remove and break or cut into desired pieces.
  8. Store in freezer or fridge to keep pieces hard.


Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Banana Nut Granola (Refined Sugar Free)

The girls do love cereal for breakfast.  As much as I like to rotate what we have for breakfast, there are definitely times where cereal can be easy and quick.  Unfortunately, many store bought cereals contain way too much sugar.  So, I have been making some granola at home.  It is not only easy but also a great way to add in your own protein, sweetener, fibre etc.  This is one is definitely a favourite of mine it works great with milk or yogurt.  
  • 3 cups gluten free rolled oats 
  • 1/2 cup walnuts
  • 1/2 cup pecans
  • 1/2 tablespoon cinnamon
  • 1 Tbsp flaxseed
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil
  • 1/3 cup pure maple syrup, agave or honey
  • 1 tablespoon palm or coconut sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 medium ripe banana, mashed 
  1. Preheat oven to 350 F.
  2. In a large bowl combine the oats, nuts, cinnamon and flaxseed together.
  3. In a small saucepan over low heat, warm the coconut oil, maple syrup and vanilla extract. Add the banana and puree until smooth.
  4. Pour over the dry ingredients and mix well.
  5. Spread the mixture evenly onto a cookie sheet or 9 x 13 pans.  
  6. Bake 25-30 minutes stirring once or twice in between.  If you want a chunkier granola don't over-mix and leave some larger pieces.
  7. Once the granola is golden brown, remove from the oven.
  8. Once cooled, store in an airtight container.  

Thursday, October 15, 2015

Update: Homeschool, Baby and Travel

It has been a long time since I wrote.  I have wanted to be on here a little more but alas, the start of homeschooling, baby and travel have taken up some time.

We have been homeschooling officially for just over a month.  I thought I would write out the things I love and the challenges.  I know there are many of you who are contemplating homeschooling and want to hear about our here it goes.

I love:
  • spending so much more time with my children
  • knowing what they are learning
  • picking what resources I think are best for their learning abilities
  • teaching what they are interested in learning
  • have most afternoons free
  • going on field trips
  • getting together with like minded families
  • volunteering together as a family
  • having weekly lessons with other families
  • home school group with friends
  • flexibility
  • weekly presentations to friends
  • during the day gymnastics/extra curricular
  • not driving to and from school
  • not paying tuition
  • I get to learn as well

  • spending a bit of time most evenings planning the next day
  • teaching French (although it is coming back to me)
  • making sure my eager kinder-gardener is playing more than doing table work
First official day of school
A typical day
Learning about the Compass Rose
Bible craft
Joseph's coat
French class with friends

Fall Poetry by my 5 year old

A third pregnancy is definitely different.  I am not always sure how many weeks I actually am and I have to remind myself to slow down and take a break.  I am however feeling great and am thankful for this healthy little honey.
Stripes make you look bigger right?
22 weeks- I had to take the time to figure that out ;)

We were able to find out as a family about a month ago that we are going to be blessed with a little boy.  We are all excited about this little man and has been fun starting to plan for him already. Yesterday I gifted an awesome start to cloth diapering.  The girls and I were practicing today.  My oldest is now well rehearsed in pre-folds, all in ones, liners and covers :)

This month, Dan and I were able to take a trip together.  My husband does a fair amount of travel for his work.  On average, he is gone twice month for a few days.   I can't complain for when he is not travelling, he works down the hall ;)  The other bonus I suppose of his travel is that he collects a lot of points which we get to redeem.
Thanks to both of our parents, we were able to use these points and take a trip to Texas.  San Antonio was our home for three days.  We were able to bike the Mission trail, tour some missions, learn about the Alamo, shop and enjoy the River Walk.  
It was so nice to be in the hot weather and to be tourists together.  I love the time to just be together without the outside distractions.  I really felt like my brain was able to take a break and just focus on us, the sites and people around.  It was a blessing.
 Rented bikes for two days

Mission Concepcion  est.1716

 Love this man!

 The Alamo-important part of Texan History

Alamo Gardens-so peaceful
The River Walk

Monday, September 28, 2015

Canned Salsa (Refined Sugar Free)

It has been a great tomato growing year.  One of the ways we have been preserving this delicious fruit is by canning them into salsa.  This is my go to recipe for regular salsa.  I make it just a mild heat for the girls but you can increase the heat with more hot peppers.

  • 8 cups chopped, peeled tomatoes*
  • 2 large minced onions
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • 1 lime juiced
  • 1 lemon juiced
  • 1/3 cup chopped cilantro
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 minced hot peppers (increase for more heat)
  • 2  finely chopped green peppers
  • 10 drops stevia

  1. In a large stainless steel stockpot, combine all the ingredients. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring constantly to prevent burning.
  2. Reduce heat and boil gently until thickened, about 30 minutes. Stir often to prevent burning.
  3. Prepare pot for canning, jars, and lids.
  4. Ladle hot salsa into hot jars, leaving  1/2-1 inch of space at the top. Wipe rim and attach lids.
  5. Place jars in canning pot, covering by at least 1-inch and bring to a boil. Process for 15 minutes, turn off the heat and let sit for 5 minutes.
  6. Remove jars to cool before storing.

*How to Peel Tomatoes
  • Bring a large pot of water to a boil.
  • Wash tomatoes
  • Make a small x pattern on the bottom of the tomato to help with the peeling.  (Don't cut into the tomato too deep.)
  • Place tomatoes in the boiling water for 1 minute.  
  • Take tomatoes out, cool or rinse with cold water.
  • Peel.