Wednesday, August 27, 2014

The best smoothie goes to..........................SLAMMING SMOOTHIE CONTEST WINNERS!!!

Hi Folks! Tonight is the night the winners of the SLAMMING SMOOTHIE CONTEST are announced!!! Excited???!!!  

You voted for best picture, and I performed a  taste test for best smoothie.  Here are the results of my taste test (click the name of each smoothie for the full recipe):

1.       Jackpot – This smoothie was very refreshing, nice blend of flavors.  Love the cilantro and basil combination.  Even though they are both very aromatic herbs, the other ingredients were not overpowered.  I will make this again!

2.       Incredible Hulk 2 – This smoothie was BIG in EVERY WAY! Flavor, satiety, and it was thick!  I had this smoothie for breakfast yesterday and I was FULL after the first few gulps.  It was like a green oatmeal shake.  Loved the cinnamon notes as well. 

3.       Chocolate Breeze – LOVE, LOVE, LOVED it!!!  I am a huge fan of peanut butter, but can’t use it at home because of Caleb’s food allergies.  I used a separate blender and even cleaned it in the bathroom to limit any contamination that could occur.  I also have to admit I was a bit skeptical of mixing chocolate and peaches! But boy was I PLEASANTLY surprised! This smoothie made me happy on the inside.   I connected with it – we now have a bond.

4.       Green Delight – This smoothie was VERY tasty.  I love the way all the flavors mingled to provide a refreshing beverage.  Hemp and maca are my favorite herbs but the powders have some chalky baggage that I don’t always like.  Overall great smoothie!

5.       Cherry Berry Heaven – Yum, yum, yum! It was surprisingly refreshing and I loved the deep red color! It had just the right amount of sweetness and no agave was added.  It was clean and love the boost of antioxidants in the cherries and blueberries!

Now for the winners!!! Drum roll please………………………………………………………….The best tasting smoothie goes to: CHOCOLATE BREEZE by Marrea Thomas and the best picture (by your votes) goes to: CHERRY BERRY HEAVEN by Chansi Coleman!!!!
Here's the winning smoothie recipe again:
Chocolate Breeze Smoothie:
1/2 avocado
1/2 cup frozen peaches
1/2 cup frozen blueberries
1 tbs chia seeds
1 tbs Chocolate Coconut Peanut Butter
Chocolate Almond Milk
 This smoothie contains the following allergens: peanuts, tree nuts (almond, coconut)
Chocolate Breeze Smoothie by Marrea Thomas ( this is my version!!)

Chocolate Breeze Smoothie ingredients
Congratulations to both Marrea and Chansi!!!  I’ll be in touch regarding the natural beauty care packages!!

Thanks again to all who participated!  Big up to Kenya, Rona, Marrea, Danike and Chansi!!!!!!  Please find the time to try the smoothies that were submitted.  They were all great! I definitely have more smoothies for my arsenal! Don’t forget to join the Facebook page and stay tuned for my Smoothie and Juicing e-guide!

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Slamming Smoothie Contest - IT'S TIME TO VOTE!

It's been quite a week! I want to say another HUGE THANK YOU to all of the contest participants! I love the variety of the smoothies we've seen this week.  There is something for everyone in this mix! The unique nature of each recipe was also impressive. Hmmmmm....... I wonder if you can tell a lot about a person by the type of smoothies they create. My guess is YES! :)

Here is a recap (click on the name of each smoothie for the recipe):

Jackpot by Kenya Carl

Incredible Hulk 2 by Rona Daniel

Chocolate Breeze by Marrea Thomas

Green Delight by Danike Etufugh

Cherry Berry Heaven by Chansi Coleman
The taste test will be TOUGH all of the smoothies look and sound AMAZING!!

Stay tuned for the recipe and photo winners!

Peace and Love!

Slamming Smoothie Contest - Cherry Berry Heaven

Hey Folks! Our next contender in the Slamming Smoothie Contest is Chansi Coleman with a smoothie called Cherry Berry Heaven.  Not only did she submit a fantastic recipe she included some heath nuggets about the ingredients.  Check it out:
Cherry Berry Heaven:
1 c deep red cherries remove seed
1 c of blueberries
4 c of spinach
a sprinkle of flax seeds
Ice to chill and a drop of agave sweetener
Spinach and cherries are filled with potassium which aid in the lowering of blood pressure while giving the body energy. Blueberries have a low impact on blood sugar and are filled with the most antioxidants for our health. I use agave sweetener as a kick and because it is proven that it doesn't effect sugar levels. Enjoy....
Cherry Berry Heaven by Chansi Coleman
Thanks again Chansi!! I will absolutely enjoy this one! Cherries are on the top of my favorite fruit list!
This entry concludes our competition, but there was one member who was bursting at the seams so although the next entry is not a contender I will post the smoothie anyway so stay tuned!!
Voting will now be open shortly on the blog for the best picture.  The poll will be active for another week and the winner will be announced shortly after.
Peace and Love! 

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Slamming Smoothie Contest - Green Delight

Hi Folks! We're on to round number 4 in The Slamming Smoothie Contest! Our next contender is Danike Etufugh and her smoothie is called Green Delight. 
Green Delight Smoothie:
Spinach (frozen) 
Green d'anjou pear
Pineapple (frozen) 
Watermelon (chilled
1 tsp super food blend powder (hemp, cacao and maca)
 Almond milk
Chia seeds
This smoothie contains the following allergen: tree nuts (almond)
Green Delight by Danike Etufugh

Superfood blend - ingredient in the Green Delight smoothie

Thanks again Danike! This is a power packed smoothie with vibrant color! I love pineapple and watermelon together.  Add in some greens and maca root and you're truly in for a delightful treat!
Stay tuned for more!
Peace and love!

Slamming Smoothie Contest - Chocolate Breeze

Hey Folks! Here is the third submission by Marrea Thomas called Chocolate Breeze! Ooo weee I can't wait to dig into this one! Note, I'll be using a separate blender to make these as they are not Caleb friendly.

Chocolate Breeze Smoothie:
1/2 avocado
1/2 cup frozen peaches
1/2 cup frozen blueberries
1 tbs chia seeds
1 tbs Chocolate Coconut Peanut Butter
Chocolate Almond Milk
 This smoothie contains the following allergens: peanuts, tree nuts (almond, coconut)

Chocolate Breeze ingredients by Marrea Thomas
Thanks Marrea for bringing more chocolate into our lives! The fruit and chocolate combination is quite interesting and that coconut peanut butter is definitely on my list!!!

Stay tuned for more!

Peace and love!

Monday, August 18, 2014

Slamming Smoothie Contest - Incredible Hulk 2

Hi Folks! The next submission is called the Incredible Hulk 2 by Rona Daniel! Mmmmm.....looks mean and VERY GREEN! Grrrrrrrrrr RRRAH! I see  it has you all growling! I can hear ya from here!  :)

Incredible Hulk 2:
1/3 cup oats
Almond milk
(Garnish with mango/apricot Greek yogurt and cinnamon/nutmeg)

This smoothie contains the following allergens: dairy, tree nuts (almond)

Thanks Rona! I love the beautiful green color! This smoothie is filled with two powerful greens: kale and spinach, with such alkalizing properties, vitamins and minerals you can't go wrong!
Incredible Hulk 2 Smoothie by Rona Daniel

Slamming Smoothie Contest - Jackpot!

Hi Folks!  The SLAMMING SMOOTHIE Contest is here!! 

Three months ago a friend of mine wanted to go on a juice fast for 2 weeks.  I told her I would join her and decided to ask other friends, family and co-workers if they wanted to join.  It's always easier (and more fun) to complete a challenge when you have a support group.  So off we went to make juice for two weeks.  I decided to start a group on face book to have a forum for sharing our recipes and progress.  It was named “The Two Week Juice/Smoothie Challenge” with a goal to simply increase your intake of fruits and veggies by consuming at least one fresh juice or smoothie per day for two weeks.  It started with juice and then included smoothies, because most of the participants didn’t have juicers.  So off we went to increase our fruit and veggie intake.  After the two weeks was over, the group wanted to keep going.  We’ve been going strong for over three months now and in that time membership has increased from 15 to 125 members.  Wow! An unexpected turn of events, but I’m so excited for all the fruit and veggie love roaming around the world (yep…the world….we have people from England in the group – shout out to Carol!!).

The group is full of people sharing their juice and smoothie recipes, success stories on weight loss, improved digestion and hormone balance.   Members are exploring new ingredients (like bee pollen, chia, hemp, and spirulina), learning about various techniques and delicious fruit and veggie combinations.  Most of all it’s fun to see so many great recipes come alive in people’s homes!  So much so, we decided to have a SLAMMING SMOOTHIE Contest where members can showcase their best smoothie recipes.  The prize is a natural beauty care package.

This week you will have a chance to vote on the best picture, and I will be the judge on the best tasting smoothie.  So here are the rules:

1.       Recipe has to be original

2.      Picture has be to original

3.      One submission per person

4.      Once all the submissions are posted a voting poll will be opened up on the blog.  There you will vote for the best picture.

Let’s get started!!!!

The first submission is from Kenya Carl.  She is calling her smoothie: The Jackpot!

The Jackpot Smoothie Recipe:
1/2 cored pineapple (Kroger size container, will need more if using smaller size)
1 container strawberries (16 oz )
1 banana
1 carrot, cut the long way to prevent lumps
1 celery , cut the long way to prevent lumps
1 handful of sweet basil with the stems attached
1-2 handfuls of cilantro with the stems attached

The Jackpot Smoothie by Kenya Carl

Awesome! Thanks Kenya!  I love the way you have involved your children! Clearly someone is enjoying it! 

Stay tuned for more!!!

Peace and Love

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

The Parasite Cleanse - Part 2

Hi Folks – I cannot begin to tell you how tumultuous these last two weeks have been.  I need a wooo sah moment or just a simple vacation!!!!

I started theparasite cleanse two weeks ago with Well Diva Lifestyle (formerly known as Soul Food Therapy).  On day 2 of the cleanse, I broke rank and had ice cream (it was my birthday after all)!  The following week I had to travel for work.  Traveling has always been tricky because you never know what the food selection is going to be in the airports or at your final destination. Last year I wrote a series of articles that about diet and travel (Airplane Food parts 1 - 5). The difference in last year's saga was that I was not limited to foods parasites hat (FPH).   Most locations I visit are not metropolitan areas with a wide array of health food options.  Plus, I always use traveling as a means to get the naughty treats I normally refrain from (during a stress free week!). 

So here I go on a week long journey out of town, away from my kitchen stocked with foods parasites hate (FPH) and into the realm of foods parasites love (FPL).  I never really paid attention to the food choices (healthy or otherwise) in regards to what parasites hate.  It’s sad to say but MOST of the food available in the marketplace (restaurants and grocery stores) is a  parasite’s dream!  I wouldn’t be surprised if the general population was riddled with parasites based on the components of the standard American diet (SAD) that we consume. 
So how did I manage?  Did I give up?  Well…yes…and no.  Let me explain.

1 – I searched for food and snacks that parasites would hate in the airport.  It was quite disappointing and frustrating.  I found some snacks…..but they WERE NOT TASTY! I’m always talking about how healthy food should taste good but I was very disappointed and not eager to continue to torture myself.

2 - I stuck to my standard late night supermarket trip to pick up healthy snacks. This time, I included smoothie ingredients and a very small blender ($20).  I had a smoothie EVERY morning for breakfast but it went downhill from there. I did drink ample water and had no elimination issues.  
Late night grocery haul - berries, pineapples, nuts, basil, mint, coconut water, unsweetened peanut butter, celery, blender, water bottles, straws, crushed red pepper, lemons, small knife

I'm done.....EXHAUSTED........

3 – I compromised and ate foods parasites LOVE (FPL).  Examples: cheese on my salad with ranch dressing. Yeast rolls for lunch. Veggie nachos for dinner (with grilled veggies, beans, avocado, cheese and corn chips).  I had a stress episode on the last day and ate lasagna…………………and potato chips…..and a donut!

Lunch - salad with ranch and cheese - I added the nuts and pumpkin seeds

Lunch - salad, cole slaw and the forbidden potato salad

Dinner - veggie nachos (forbidden cheese and corn chips)

So I was on the edge and actually jumped in the water.  I felt slightly guilty…and even more disappointed because I did not stick to the program. I’ve rebelled during a cleanse before, but this time it just felt so hard.  Here’s what I learned:

1.       It’s really hard to remain faithful to a cleansing program while away from home.  When your comfort zone (the home kitchen) is stripped away and you are left to protect the cleanse in a “hostile” environment it can get rough.  I had difficulty and temptation even in the grocery store! I was so hungry in that grocery store a box of Nutty Bars was screaming my name!



2.      Life happens.  You do the best you can, pick up the pieces and start again. There is no need to feel guilty or beat myself up.

3.      I’ve been exposed to another wellness activity and feel empowered that I can repeat it…..and actually complete the program.

4.      My advice to others is plan to do a cleanse when you don’t have anything else to do…no birthday celebrations, travelling, or visitors.  It can be done, but takes a lot more effort, and when you are away from home, you can never predict what type of food will be available. Granted I could have eliminated the cheese.........
Peanut butter and jelly smoothie ingredients (blackberries, strawberries, peanut butter, coconut water)

Pineapple, strawberry and mint with chia and coconut water

Infused water (lemon, mint and strawberries)
Next steps:

1.       Continue to pay attention to the foods I eat so that I can have a balance between foods parasites hate and love.

2.      Continue to eat pineapples and pepper along with the other yummy recipes I created while on the cleanse.

3.      Try the parasite cleanse again when there is less excitement in my life.

I'll leave you with key messages that have helped me:  just do your best.  Life is a journey.  Things are not always going to go as planned, but having a measure of self-control still goes a long way.  Will power is key in completing any challenge.  External forces can pressure your resolve.  It’s up to you to manage it, but don’t beat yourself up about falling short.  Just get back up and try it again. 
Even though the parasite cleanse was rocky, I’ve been enlightened on what parasitic symptoms are, how bad the standard American diet is, and how to manage my diet better.


Peace and love!

Saturday, August 2, 2014

REPOST: More Watermelon Please!

Hi Folks this is an archived article from last summer with added watermelon juice or smoothie recipes.  If you love watermelon, you'll enjoy this article!


Summer time has hit with a vengeance and my favorite fruit to eat, and what I yearn for every summer, is WATERMELON!

I love watermelon.  It's the most refreshing, filling, enjoyable fruit that has come into my life. Nice, cold, sweet, watermelon! Does anyone else drink the leftover juice in the bowl??? That's my favorite part! Although I do not use a "method" to pick my watermelons (thumping, smelling, etc.), 90% of the time I get a pretty good one.  I love the kind that has slightly mealy pulp, sweet flavor,  good color and less than a 1/4 inch of rind.

A few years ago we tried to grow some in our garden.  Watching them grow was like going to a theme park for me! It was amazing to see the growth process (see below).

Watermelon emerging from the vine

Baby melon

Starting to take shape. mmmm good!
Melons in general have an excellent cleansing effect.  They alkalize the body and will hydrate you after a long run or day in the sun better than a sports drink.  My mother always raves about how much energy she received from eating watermelon after a long day working on their farm (in the Dirty South).

Here are some other facts about watermelon:
1.  It can remove toxins from the blood.
2.  It should be eaten between meals - not right after because the water content can affect digestion.
3.  It can be tolerated well by diabetics due to it's low sugar content (but it tastes so sweet!).
4.  It can help fight urinary conditions such as kidney stones.
5.  Eating watermelon is a good way to loose weight.  It fills you up and satisfies cravings for something sweet.

Here are some links to juices and smoothies that contain watermelon:
1. Summer Hydration juice
2. Watermelon Plum smoothie
3. Watermelon Cilantro juice

So, eat up  and drink up this summer season......I know I will!  Most melons in the US are grown in the Southern states and are a watermelon lover's DREAM! Watermelon is Caleb approved and a good way for him to hydrate, especially the days where he refuses to drink pure water.

May I have more watermelon please??

What is your favorite summer fruit?