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Showing posts from April, 2017

CLEAN EATING: Pink Juice

It's about that time - watermelons are now ripe!  I love blended watermelon as a juice base.  One of our favorite summertime juice blends consists of watermelon, strawberries, a couple tablespoons of homemade elderberry syrup, half a lemon, and a bit of honey.  Tastes like a Jolly Rancher minus the corn syrup, processed sugar, and artificial dyes.  So delicious and refreshing!

Thank you for reading!
-Alyssa


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FAITH: Failing to be Christ-Like

As a Christian, I failed hard this past week. It was a doozy. A you-call-yourself-a-Christian?- kind of doozy.

I was surprised by the kind of hideous, frightening, evil-inspired darkness that bubbled out of me. I had no idea it was there, let along capable of it.

If you're a Christian, I'm sure you've been here. Where your heart revealed something frighteningly dark even though you've been seeking Jesus' light for so long. When this happened, I'm sure the accuser was quick to point out how all other Christians aren't as bad as you. Here's the thing, though; even if the enemy is right that I'm the worst at following Jesus, I'd rather finish this race in last place than get sidelined away from God's perfect will and protection.

Hallelujah for the Lord's grace that it's sufficient enough to cover our dark depths!

More thoughts...
Sin is sin. It doesn't matter if it's a little fib or literal murder - it's sin in God's eyes…

CLEAN LIVING: Indoor House-Planting

Spring always gets me excited to try my hand at hosting live plants in my home (I usually end up killing them halfway through the summer. WAH!).  Perhaps getting a new planter will help me to fight harder for my plants' lives this year.  I'm looking for something under $50.  Do you have any favorites below?

I'm getting a Bamboo Palm and Snake Plant today.  I hear they're hardy and of course, great air purifiers.

Do you have any house plant advice for me?  Comment below!

Thank you for reading!
- Alyssa

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FAITH: Don't Lose Hope

Seasons change, money comes and goes, babies are born, cars stop working, the highs and lows of life are constantly fluctuating. When I’m going through a hard time, the Lord reminds me that it’s not going to be like this forever and then He asks me, “so what are you going to do on the meantime?”

The answer is don’t worry, trust in Him, remember that He is the God of Hope and that the consequences of having faith in Him are joy and peace. We can’t fret our circumstances away so until Jesus gets us through a storm, let’s keep our eyes on Him.

Thank you for reading!  Jesus loves YOU.
-Alyssa



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CLEAN EATING: Easy 3 Ingredient Jelly (Without Processed Sugar)

Processed sugar hides out in so many items we get from the store. Unless everything you eat is homemade, there's a good chance you're eating more processed sugar than you realize.

Making homemade jelly is one of the ways my family avoids processed sugar and it's really simple to do.

I add frozen organic berries to a pot with a little spinach or shredded carrots (for added nutrition), along with honey. Simmer for an hour, then blend everything in the pot with an immersion blender. From there, I taste  the mixture and add more berries or honey if necessary and simmer longer. If I don't need to add anything, I'm all done!

There's so many things we make with this jelly. Put in a dehydrator for homemade fruit roll ups. Mix with gelatin and make fruit snacks. Mash with half a banana and have strawberry/banana oatmeal. And of course, peanut butter and jelly sandwiches (just mix the jelly with chia seeds for extra nutrition and to thicken the jelly).

Today, I went wit…

FAITH: 1 Samuel 18:3

The contrast between Saul and his son, Jonathan is unmistakable. Jonathan's loyalty to the Lord and to his friend, David, makes him one of my favorite people mentioned in the Bible.

Jonathan gives up worldly things like his "right" to the throne as well as risks family strife (between he and his father) for the Lord's plan. It's obvious Jonathan loves God more than his earthly "rights." Jonathan is more concerned with his relationship with His Heavenly Father than his relationships with anyone else.

My prayer is that my desire to follow Jesus will overshadow everything else. That I would never be afraid to follow Him even when the path seems lonely, even when my loved ones disagree, even when the grass seems greener on the other side.

Click here to read the entire chapter of 1 Samuel 18.
Click here to select a different translation.

Thank you for reading.  Jesus loves YOU!
 -Alyssa



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CLEAN BEAUTY: MooGoo - Fresh Cream Deodorant

Back when I shared the contents of my medicine cabinet with you, I promised a review of MooGoo's Fresh Cream Deodorant.

I tried most natural deodorants out there.  Multiple times, I tried making my own.  I even tried going simple by simply swiping my underarms with rubbing alcohol throughout the day.  Of all the things I tried, swiping with homemade magnesium oil was the most effective... until, like with baking soda, my underarms said "no more!" by becoming itchy and inflamed.

At the very least, half a decade of no deodorant homeostasis had caused my body to sweat and smell less.  I could almost go undetected in a sniff test every 24 hours.  But I definitely needed a shower immediately after every workout.  No post yoga brunches for this smelly gal.

What was I to do?  Confirm to the holistic-suspicious that earth loving granolas like me are stinky?  I haven't used traditional deodorant with aluminum in almost five years and to be honest, there were times I consider…

FAITH: When I Chose Modesty

When I was in my teens and early 20s, I was extremely immodest. While I was getting ready to go out, my goal was to look as hot as possible and collect as much attention as possible. 

I thought that if I could be the hottest woman in the room, I would be able to capture attention and it would be mine for as long as I wanted. It didn't occur to me that the kind of attention I was seeking is a fleeting kind. In other words, it didn't matter if I was the most beautiful woman that guy had ever seen. The kind of guy who appreciated my immodesty had zero standards whatsoever. He'd hang on my every word until someone else's skin flashed by. He'd flirt with me and then turn around and flirt with every other girl as well. This guy didn't care about whose makeup was better, who was witty, who had better legs, who was nicest, etc. The kind of guy who is attracted to immodesty is only interested in one thing and that's not your heart. This dude has no other standards an…

CLEAN EATING: Bliss Bites

I posted Bliss Bites (peanut butter cups) on my Instagram a couple months ago, but they're definitely worth mentioning here on the blog as well.

My boys and I often make A Couple Cooks' Bliss Bites. How can something that's 100% plant based and processed sugar-free taste so amazing and be so easy to make?!  We finished the entire batch within ten min.  They're even vegan-suspicious spouse approved πŸ‘πŸΌπŸ˜‹πŸ˜ Also, I love that this recipe called for the ingredients to be heated in a sauce pan rather than a microwave. #NoToNuking

The only thing I did different was add half a teaspoon of chia seeds and half a teaspoon of hemp hearts into the chocolate mixture for added nutrition and protein.  Also, I use cacao instead of the cocoa they called for.  Cacao is the raw form of cocoa but they were still amazing.

Thank you for reading!
-Alyssa



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FAITH: 1 Samuel 4

Regarding the Israelites foolishly taking the ark into battle without reverence to God.

It's so easy for our flesh to want religion - a formula.  This means, as long as we keep up the formula, we don't have to surrender to the living God, because we performed the "routine."  This routine/formula/religion looks like superstition and quickly becomes bondage.  The etymology of "religion" breaks down to, "return to bind," or "return to bondage."  Today's study points out that the Israelites put their trust in the ark instead of the Lord.  We may not be putting our trust in the ark, but perhaps we're putting our trust in specifically worded prayers that are on repeat, word-for-word?  Perhaps we're putting our trust in the act of going to church every Sunday rather than in worshiping Jesus with our lives?  Perhaps we're counting on proxy to godly people to make us holy?  This is a great chapter that's getting me to check m…