War on Average

encouraging each other not to be satisfied with mediocre


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Hammy’s Quinoa Salad

We made some changes to this great recipe to make it an even healthier option! Use the original recipe or check below for the updates (Jan 2016)

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My mother is affectionately known as Hammy. She was to be Grammy which my daughter said as Hammy, which stuck. Anyway…she took a recipe and changed it up a bit to create a delicious salad! we made a few edits too and hope you enjoy the delicious side!

Ingredients:
1 cup quinoa dry
2 gloves garlic diced
1 med shallot diced
5 oz baby arugula
1-2 pints cherry tomato quartered
1/8 c olive oil (plus some to sauté garlic)
2 TB white balsamic vinegar
4-8 oz Feta cheese (cubed)
Salt and pepper

To make:
Cook quinoa*
Sauté garlic and shallot in olive oil
Turn off heat then add arugula and mix to gently wilt
Add that mixture and the rest of the ingredients to a large boil
Mix well and enjoy!

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*To cook the quinoa, add 2 cups water to a pan and boil. Add the 1 cup dry quinoa. Boil for 5 min then cover and leave for 10-15 min. This can be done the night before or earlier in the day and cooled in the fridge but you can also use hot quinoa for this dish.

 

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Updated for an even healthier option:
Use 1/2 cup dry quinoa (rather that 1 cup)
Add 1-2 cups baby spinach (wilted if desired)
Use 1/2 cup Feta (rather than a full 8 oz)

Enjoy!


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Expanding the Impact of My Gifts

IMG_8871_2  Last week I was asked to be part of leading a training meeting about what the Shaklee opportunity looks like for me in the context of MomLife. In preparing for that cool opportunity I realized that what I would share was based in principles and would apply to virtually anyone, in any stage of life.

Now, this wasn’t your average training meeting held in a sterile feeling room with a whiteboard of projector screen that requires pastries and coffee to entice those to dare enter. It was thirty adults (many whom brought their children who enjoyed time around the pool) under a tent all at different places in their Shaklee journey from brand-new to super-successful in their business of changing lives. All of them chose to show up because they recognize the power of the Shaklee difference in their lives and were eager to learn how to better use, share and build what Shaklee provides to make lives better.

So what I shared then I want to share now, in the context of wherever real life has you. Shaklee has been a source of fulfillment and financial blessing, giving our family ability to make decisions based on what we want to do instead of what we have to do. But besides that, Shaklee has provided a surprising and effective circumstance for God to grow me in areas I never considered…and if I did consider them, never thought they were possible at this stage of stay-at-home-mom life. Often thinking, “maybe I will get to do that/learn that/grow in that way once the kids are older or out on their own.”
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Changing lives in my business has given me the chance to expand the impact of my gifting. This business has given me the chance to discover and grow in my God-given identity in ways that were not possible before.

I read an article recently called “Are You Lonely Mama?” And the article made me ever so thankful for the Shaklee family that I have. I speak with people all over the country who share a vision for changing the world. Through Shaklee I have developed relationships that go far beyond health, nutrition, but have become trusted prayer partners and friends. The Shaklee community has become and amazing place to speak about motherhood, but also so much more. It is a place that pulls us back into balance between the bigger picture of life and living with nose to the grindstone, just plowing through the joys and challenges of raising kids managing a home. A place where motherhood is praised and prioritized, but also where we encourage one another to remember and practice the other parts of the identity we have been blessed with!
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The second article that had a powerful impact shared the importance of having an identity outside the walls of motherhood. It spoke to me in so many ways. It made me thankful and AWARE of my blessings and even helped me identify areas I have grown. This message is not only powerful for this season, (monotony of diapers, endless snack times and tying shoes) but for future seasons, like when the subjects of my motherhood begin pursuing their independence and who I am walks out the door to college.

So many things have been made possible. I had no idea I could help families on so many levels, though their health (Like Amber and Elisabeth). I never knew I could be a leader. I never imagined I would have privilege to inspire, challenge and help other moms and business people grow. I never dreamed I’d have opportunities to share accomplishments and my story in crowds of thousands. I never thought I would make goals that I could achieve and even help others do that same. To see growing families on our team able to purchase homes and vehicles for their growing families and able to give and travel in ways they never imagined…just amazing! I love the platform Shaklee has provided to play bigger, inspire and share my values with so many!

I never thought I could do this because my dream was (and is) to be a great wife and mom. I didn’t know I could have both. I can do this while being all-there for my family. And even so, being this person (this Proverbs 31 inspired woman), has made me a better wife and a better mom because I am beginning to reach my potential outside of those walls.

 

Please contact me if you would like to learn more and join me in this adventure!

 

 

 


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Some Things Moms Need

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I spend a lot of time helping people find solutions to health concerns, changing their nutrition, and make general healthy changes. Most of the time, that is for their children. Often as moms we neglect our own health for the sake of our children. I even find myself blogging more about children’s health than about health for moms because that is what I am most often asked about.

But I want to share with you some things that moms need—not just to be healthy but to be the best moms they can be! And I’ll keep this brief because I know you don’t have a lot of time to read about something for yourself.

There are many stages of mommy life, so I am just covering basic mom needs. You can check out here what pregnant moms need and soon I will be writing specifically about what nursing moms need.

Most Moms Need Energy:
Yes, many of us are just tired—we were up three times last night with three different children—nursing, nightmares, last minute science fair projects. But there are a few key nutrients that will give women more energy to get through the day:

Protein: Most women do not get enough protein. And most of us are giving all the best foods to our children first. Shaklee 180 and Vitalizing Protein are a great solution for the busy mom who still needs to get in a healthy meal. They are not just for losing weight, but getting enough protein (and all the other nutrients in these) will help give you the energy you need for your day!

B-Complex: We all deplete our B vitamins all day—with stress, caffeine, alcohol, exercise, etc. Replenishing them helps us with focus, memory, moods, cravings, stress, anxiety and ENERGY. Do you know any moms who would like that? My friend Barb, nutritionist extraordinaire, says “it turns every woman into Mother Theresa.” I take one in the morning and at least one in the afternoon—and sometimes another few before or after bedtime!

Vitamin D: I live in the Midwest and here especially, many women are lacking in Vitamin D. Having healthy levels of Vitamin D not only helps with immunity, overall health, emotional stability but also ENERGY. This easy and inexpensive additional to your vitamin regimen could have a very big impact on your energy, especially in the winter and/or when pregnant.

Iron: Women need iron and so many supplements on the market do not use iron that is bio-available (absorbs correctly in your body). If you are not getting the iron you need from your vitamin, you won’t have the energy you need to be the best mom you can be! If you are very low on iron, you may want to add Iron+C to your VitaLea with Iron or Vitalizer Women.

Most Moms Need a Refuel:
Whether you’ve been emptied of nutrients from birthing babies or been emptied from a very hard day, you can refuel your body and mind (with the items above as well as some of these below)

OmegaGuard: Many studies are saying that Omega’s are the most important supplement to be on. For many women, being low on these important nutrients after having babies can lead to “mommy brain,” postnatal anxiety, postnatal depression and more. Omegas also help with inflammation which is the source of many health issues.

Stress Relief Complex: Not much is needed to say for moms with this but here is one short testimony from Marissa: “”Stress relief complex helps me to be a better mom because it gives me a sense of calm even in the really trying moments. I am able to keep cool and process each situation as it comes.”

Energy Tea: This is by far one of my favorites! It is a delicious way for me to get that refuel of a little caffeine and B-vitamins to push through an afternoon after being up with kiddos or rising early with them. The side-benefits to green matcha are a plus if you’ve been following those!

 

Some Moms Need a Passion:
Whether you work full-time or stay home full-time or something in between, many moms are looking to find a passion—for me it has been helping people. My friend, Bonnie was a stay-at-home mom who needed to use her gifts and do something more. My friend Jo, wanted to stay home with her children—that was almost 40 years ago. My friend, Katie wanted to follow her passion for teaching but be able to stay home with her daughter. My friend Jeanine needed to be healthier, then went on to share that transformation. The stories go on. Here is my story. You can learn more about how the Shaklee opportunity might fulfill that passion in you, by watching here. Contact me for more information.


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24 Hours on a Treadmill

 

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Prevention. Awareness.

These are two things we have always stood behind as we strive to educate people about health. We have chosen to partner with our friend Eric O’Connor to help create healthier lives, particularly in creating awareness and prevention of blood clots.

Because improving this health issue relies initially and primarily on prevention and awareness it often does not get the funding and attention other health issues do! You and I can help!

So why blood clots? On average, 274 Americans die from a blood clot every day. 900,000 blood clots occur annually and of those there are 100,000 deaths each year. More people die from blood clots each year than the total number of people who lose their lives each year to AIDS, breast cancer, and motor vehicle crashes combined.

Why Eric? After running three marathons in 2010 (intending to run three more in 2011), he tore his meniscus playing soccer with his son. A week after his surgery, while standing in the garage with the boys he says “I felt like I had just done a 10 mile workout. I was short of breath, my heart was racing and I was sweating. Sue, my wife rushed home from the ER where she is a nurse and took me in.” After surviving his own blood clot (read more here), he is taking on this amazing feat to raise awareness for what could save your life or the life of someone close to you.

The goal: 100 miles in 24 hours.
Start: April 10th at 12 pm

Finish: April 11th 12 pm
Where: Run Today in Glen Ellyn

 

 

HOW CAN YOU HELP?

Your Shaklee order placed at www.harperguerra.myshaklee.com during the run will send a percentage of proceeds to the cause! (April 10 noon to April 11 noon)

Join us at the event, April 10-11 at Run Today in Glen Ellyn, IL. Ryan and I will have a table on Saturday morning and I’ll be joining the run from 11-11:30 a.m.

Donate any time

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Flower Tots

So tonight we had a head of cauliflower and although our Coconut Mashed Cauliflower is the favorite food of our second daughter, our older daughter was not so excited. So we found some recipes on-line and she chose one and we modified it for our family. I have never seen a head of cauliflower disappear so quickly!

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Ingredients:
1 head cauliflower
1/3 c. almond meal
1/8 c. parmesan cheese (we used Shaker Cheese cause that is all we had)
2 eggs
2 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp oregano
2 tsp fresh basil (if you have fresh)
sprinkle of salt

Steps:
1. Preheat oven to 375
2. Steam cauliflower for about 5 min
3. Put all other ingredients into a bowl during steaming and mix well
4. Chop up cauliflower and add to mix
5. Roll into balls
6. Place on greased cookie sheet (I used olive oil to grease)
7. Bake for 20 min, flipping half way through

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Enjoy!

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Sweet Treats

So, I have a sweet tooth. I love chocolate. I love peanut butter and chocolate together. I love Raisinettes.

Here are two great recipes I found recently that are a healthier, less processed option!

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Peanut Butter Cup Bars
Not only are these totally delicious and easy to make but the batch they make is the perfect size for moderation 🙂 I made these with the girls. So simple!

Grok Rocks
Basically chocolate covered prunes. And way yummier than you’d think.

Enjoy!

 


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Essentials for Making Your Body a Power-House of Immunity

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I get to share these absolute essentials often as a speaker on nation-wide coaching and education webinars as well as during informal settings like play dates at the park or fitness center. I have seen the impact that paying attention to these can make so I wanted to provide them in a more widely available format. Many are no-brainers, but difficult disciplines to create. Others may require a more in-depth look at what deficiencies may exist that contribute to a weakened immune system. Either way, I am glad to provide a way to launch into pursuit of better health!

To improve and/or maintain health there are four essential recommendations: For in-depth information for the first three, check out Michelle’s great post.

  1. Nutrition:
    This is KEY. Decrease sugar (which includes grains) and increase vegetables. Sugar decreases immunity and vegetables increase immunity. This seems simple but it takes effort to have a nutritious diet. However, the effort you make to pursue nutrition and prepare healthy options will replace effort you may currently be putting forth in other areas. Consider time spent at doctor’s offices, home from work or school or even funds spent to meet deductibles or pay co-pays for office visits or prescriptions. (We offer help with nutrition plans for all our Shaklee members). You may have heard “abs are made in the kitchen” and so it goes for immunity as well.Planning ahead to make the best nutrition choices as often as possible is very important. When you know you will be attending an event that will involve less than healthy options, be sure you consume protein and vegetables earlier in the day. You can also learn more about how to off-set the effects of an evening of poor nutrition or even a few alcoholic beverages with supplements. A quality, proper supplement will help your body process the occasional cheat meal or beverage and ensure you are not left deficient due to the stress that the less healthy choices may put on your body.
  1. Sleep & Stress:
    Our bodies need sleep to repair and rest. Not getting enough quality sleep leads to a weaker immune system. Never underestimate the impact stress creates on the body. Often the symptoms of stress or lack of sleep will not show up until it is too late. This is why it is so important to design a sleep schedule and stress management routine (it can be very brief, especially if your body is equipped with the appropriate raw materials to internally regulate stress.) Stress will greatly hinder your immune system. (Shaklee members can contact us to help with these areas).
  2. Habits:
    Habits are the small actions that yield potentially enormous benefits. Make the simple steps to stay healthy part of your routine: wash hands, have your children change out of their school clothes before their naps. If you want to learn even more then get educated about food sanitation and how germs can spread through food (My friend Monica has some great professional advice!)
  3. Supplements:
    Many people already feel like they have a good handle on the first three essentials, but are looking for even more ways to stay healthy. It seems to be getting more and more difficult, especially for those exposed regularly to schools, gyms and public workplaces. Because of this, I often get asked which supplements are best to boost immunity. These are just BASIC suggestions. Talk to your Shaklee consultant to determine a more customized and most cost effective plan for you. If you’re wondering why we choose Shaklee, watch this little video or ASK US! We are passionate about the Shaklee Difference!

    Start with a healthy base:
    I recommend everyone (young and old) to be on a QUALITY multivitamin with research that backs it’s effectiveness. Why supplement? Despite even the best efforts to eat organic and all natural, our food supply does not contain the vitamins and minerals it once did. Even organic produce is grown for yield and not for nutritional value This means the choice is ours whether to supplement in an educated way that eliminates deficiencies and allows our bodies to function the way God designed them.
    For seasonal immunity and those who require additional immune support:
    Optiflora probiotics: Over 70% of the immune system is in the gut. Probiotics help to maintain a healthy digestive system. Shaklee has a patented triple-encapsulated delivery system that guarantees delivery of the full dose of probiotics at the right point in the digestive system. This is especially important for those who have Candida issues, have recently been on antibiotics, steroids, or those who experience digestive issues.

    Vitamin C: Shaklee makes a chewable Vitamin C for children (better than Flinstone’s in every way, including that it is all natural and has no toxic fillers or ingredients like most over the counter kid’s vitamins have). Shaklee also has a sustained release Vitamin C supplement for adults. Ask me why sustained release is key for certain supplements. There are good reasons, but from a cost stand-point it ensures your body is getting it’s money’s worth of the supplement you ingest.

    Vitamin D: Bioavailability matters and ensuring that the Vitamin D you are taking is absorbed into your body is key. Vitamin D is chocked full of benefits for year round health and immunity, but especially important during the colder, cloudier winter days as well as if you work indoors most of the day.

    That extra boost:
    These supplements are great for when you feel like you or someone in your family is coming down with something or even once you are undoubtedly sick. Either way, taken regularly, they will help you avoid getting sick or at the very least assist your recovery and cut the time significantly that it takes you to get back to feeling human again. In our family we have avoided sickness countless times in the last several years simply by keeping these on hand and using them at the right time. Not only do we rarely get sick now, even with very young children, we have more time in our lives because of the down-time and effort being sick requires.

    Vitalized Immunity: Is a tasty (alka-seltzer-like) orange flavored tab that dissolves in water and boosts your immune system with a variety of vitamins. Has the equivalent of sixteen orange’s worth of vitamin C in addition to other immune boosting ingredients. (For kids under ten I usually give ½ of a tab.)

    NutriFeron: Scientists and medical communities have identified interferon as being crucial to healthy immune function. NutriFeron is an exclusive, patented formula, which provides a proprietary blend of four plant extracts designed to naturally increase levels of interferon in the body and provide immune support at the cellular level. When symptoms of sickness begin to become evident this is what our family begins to supplement with immediately and are close to a perfect record of fighting off the sickness before it takes hold.

    Defend & Resist: Defend & Resist Complex strengthens your body to respond to environmental challenges by giving your immune system what it needs to stay strong. Key ingredients in Defend & Resist have been shown in laboratory studies to help to stimulate the body’s natural resistance with Echinacea purpurea, help to maintain a healthy immune response with black elderberry and enhances immune support with larch tree. Who knew such little-known natural sources could be part of supporting your body, which was designed to be strong, to fight off sickness and germs?!

    The first two of these were staples in our home daily leading up to Christmas when everyone we talked to seemed to be sick and when nutrition and sleep were at a low. We managed to stay completely healthy despite regular contact with sick family and friends over the holidays. Yes!!

 

These are simple guidelines to begin a roadmap to a stronger immune system. Your Shaklee consultant will be able to help you customize a plan to your specific needs and even taking budget into consideration.

 


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Easy & Healthy Crock Pot Chicken Thighs

I am always looking for easy and healthy chicken crock-pot recipes. I don’t tend to use BBQ ones because of the sugar and my family doesn’t like any tomato based ones.

After finding a few things on-line, I put this together to be simple and delicious. It goes great with Coconut Cauliflower and Sautéed Bok Choy.

Ingredients:
1 onion sliced
2-4 tsp minced garlic
2 bay leaves
Peppercorns
¼ c Liquid Aminos or Soy Sauce
¼ c Apple Cider Vinegar
¼ c Coconut milk
7-8 pieces of chicken thigh

Plan:
Put in onions and garlic
Then chicken
Then bay leaves and peppercorns
Then liquids
Cook on low for five hours

Enjoy!


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Homemade Toothpaste

The search for a quality toothpaste without chemicals lead me to make my own with the amazing power of coconut oil. I made this for my children and myself and combine it for myself with oil pulling. After checking out many recipes and working with what I had, this is what is working for our family.

We re-use the containers from my husband’s favorite face lotion (and my favorite for night time), well rinsed and dried. Those containers fit this recipe perfectly.

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Combine 2 TB of coconut oil (softened enough to whisk with fork),
2 TB of baking soda, and 1 tsp of xylitol. Whisk together well with a fork.

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For children who are not good at spitting out** the toothpaste I use six drops of Citrus essential oil and for my older daughter I use 10-12 drops of spearmint or peppermint oil. For ours, we use more mint because we prefer a stronger minty flavor.

And that’s it! Hope this is helpful to you!

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**With the concerns about children ingesting essential oils, I am very careful to only put 6 drops in for just a bit of flavor. For an infant I would not use an EO’s personally. I wanted to add a little flavor for my toddler (who does spit out a little bit) because she was used to a flavored toothpaste beforehand. Hope that is a helpful clarification. 


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Can your New Year’s Resolution be to save money AND be healthier? YES!

I have heard many people comment that being healthy is just too expensive. I have read many great comparisons that show that eating healthy is not more expensive than eating unhealthy. And beginning or further investing in your health proves to pay great dividends not only financially but in quality and length of life. Like my friend Rick Seymour always says, “I want to die young…at a very old age.”

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Here are a few stories to help put the reality of the health investment in perspective:

At a recent trip to my accountant (who also used to be a customer, but never really got how and why Shaklee – my fault, not hers) Deb recounted a story of a customer of hers, Sally. Sally’s father had done her taxes for years, but after her divorce she Is earning $25,500 per year and has 4 kids. How is she surviving, I asked. Deb was extremely proud that she was able to get Sally $8000 back in her taxes. Later in our conversation, Deb told me she is taking 13 medications. “How do you feel about that?” I asked. She stated “Not good. Shaklee has great products, but not everyone can afford them”. I replied, “There is a difference between value and cost. By comparison, if you look at cost, not everyone can afford an accountant. Sally is one of those people, but when Deb got her $8,000 back on her taxes, the value of an accountant is quite clear. That’s how it works with Shaklee. You buy a $1 worth of nutrition, you get $10 back in quality of life, no doctor’s visits, no illnesses and no side effects from meds. The look on her face was – PRICELESS. She ordered Gold Vitalizer and we are going to work on reclaiming her health. Sometimes we need to wait for the truth of what we do and why we do it to come in a single, crystal clear moment.
Annie

Six years ago my wife Linda was on 17 prescriptions a day that cost us over $800.00 per month. After finding Shaklee she is now on 0, none, no medications and for a whole lot less than we were paying. That $800 a month now covers supplements for both of us, plus all of our cleaning supplies, plus breakfast everyday for both of us.
Steve

 

My friend Amber has an amazing story (you may have seen our Shaklee Effect Video where we were flown to New York to meet on camera) but she also talks about the amount of money they are saving by using preventative health. (She also documents how much she saves in cleaners even as a former couponer).

 

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So is Shaklee worth the investment?
From Beth ”A friend mentioned GNC vitamins, and I was interested in seeing the price difference between Shaklee and GNC. For a multivitamin, probiotic, fish oil and protein Shaklee is actually LESS money (GNC was $4.86 a day and Shaklee was $4.43)! And GNC brands do not have the science, the purity, the testing behind their products like Shaklee does. Shaklee goes BEYOND organic (go ahead and ask me how) and ensures their products are safe AND effective.”
Want to know more about why Shaklee is worth the cost?
The most expensive vitamins are the ones that don’t work.

Watch this video and try it with your supplements
Read this blog about Children’s Vitamins
Rest this testimony of Why Shaklee?
Watch this video about the Shaklee Difference
Listen to this audio file about the standard Shaklee sets in the industry.

 

And if your goals are to be healthy and MAKE money, contact me about joining me in this amazing business of giving people access to choices to create healthier lives!

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