War on Average

encouraging each other not to be satisfied with mediocre


2 Comments

Mom Hacks: Laundry

Those of you who follow my of Facebook may have seen my live video on my Laundry Mom-Hack, and this can serve as a follow up to you.

Here was where I found myself: Spending a lot of time trying to have a reading chair instead of a laundry chair.

laundry

I have three children and a husband. Two of those children are girls who change their clothes a lot. They are also girls who dress themselves (and have for quite a while). What did this result in?

Drawers that look like this.

img_9284

So I found myself transitioning to having the girls put away their own laundry, since they didn’t keep it in my nice piles anyway.

Then, as a looked at my mountain of laundry (on my beloved laundry chair) I realized I was wasting incredible amount of time folding their clothes–since, as I said, they just ended up in heaps in the drawers anyway.

So my husband purchased me three small baskets. Now I am done with the laundry in at least half the time. I just sort each girls’ clothing into their basket. It is not folded. It is not put right-side out.

img_9283

It in then their responsibility put away the clothes as they are, sorted as they like, since they will be dressing themselves. It has saved me time and will teach them responsibility moving forward!

And yes, the clothes are wrinkled. But they were wrinkled sitting on my laundry chair for days and they were wrinkled as they were shoved and pushed around the drawers. The kids still look adorable.

After about two months of doing this, I consider it a great mom hack success!

 

Want to improve your family’s allergies, skin issues, brain function, immunity and more? Learn more about non-toxic laundry solutions from Shaklee! They work incredibly well too! I know, my kids are messy eaters!

Does this help you? Does this save you time? Let me know if you have tried it!


2 Comments

Dear New Girl at the Gym,

gymDear New Girl at the Gym,

First, welcome. I can tell you are new here. Not just because I am kind of here a lot, but because you’re still finding your groove. Guess what? That’s okay! I remember when I first walked into a gym and just trotted along on the treadmill and watched the news because I wasn’t sure how to change the channels and didn’t want to look funny on the weight machines. I’ve been there too. Just because I did it a few years before you doesn’t make me any better. And if I get the chance, I am going to say hello. I want you to knowthat where you are is a a good place to be. I want you to know there are people who will answer your questions. I want this to become a community for you. I want this to be a community who is FOR you. I want you to be here long past March.

Second, way to go! I know it’s hard to decide to go someplace new. I know you’ve invested money and time to be here. If you have kids, I know (trust me, I know) what a workout it was just to get them all in shoes, coats, hats and to the childcare just to get to the weightroom or treadmill. I know the pressure you may feel when you put yourself out there and you look around feeling like everyone else knows what they are doing or that you’re in the way cause you’re a “resolutioner.” (Not everyone else knows what they are doing.)

I want you to know that I would rather park farther away for the rest of the year if it means the gym stays packed with people like you who grow in their commitment to health. I hope the gym is always this busy. I hope that if your kid is sick next week that you come back the next week. I hope you find a groove (and you will, give it time and I have  a few tips below).

Remember, this time for you is GOOD for you and for everyone in your life. Prioritizing this is not selfish. It compounds the blessing that you are in every area of your life. You will have more energy, more focus and even feel better in your clothes this month. But think about the rest of your life! The choices to care for YOU today will impact your health 20, 30 years from now. Exercise builds muscle, increases metabolism, increases bone density, and most definitely decreases stress and increases sanity. Think about how NOT breaking your hip playing with your grandkids could because you made the resolute commitment to choose YOUR health even when it was uncomfortable. As it is said, life, growth and all good things start OUTSIDE you and I’s comfort zone.

If you’re struggling this month, know you have a cheerleader in me…and I bet, if we get to know each other, someday I will be rooted on by you too! Keep it up, my friend!

– Harper

Some tips for getting started:
1. Schedule your weekly routine to go to the gym. Commit to it on your calendar before planning the rest of the week. It will help you stay on track.

2. Have a plan for each day you attend. There are so many resources online that you find tips and ideas for workouts.

3. Hire a trainer. If doesn’t have to be a weekly thing. You can hire an online trainer (I know a great one) or hire a trainer at your gym for one session. They can help you figure out some exercises that will help you reach your goals and then you can continue to build on those.

4. Have an accountability partner to call you on gym days or to work out with you.

5. Get gym clothes that you feel good in. That really makes a difference.

6. Eat to support your goals. Begin exploring what type of nutrition will help you recover. For example, if you are wanting to lose a few pounds it is important to eat in a way that burns fat, but preserves and even builds your valuable muscle at the same time. I have found that high fiber (veggies especially) and protein sources that include Leucine is key in this endeavor.


Leave a comment

Miss Pam’s Vegetable Soup


Our beloved Miss Pam brought us some of her amazing soup on a rough night when I had no idea what I was going to make for dinner. It was delicious! I needed some help with mine and she made it amazing. She taught me her skills and now my kids ask for “Miss Pam’s Soup.” It is an excellent way to get in as many vegetables as you want and add some you and your kids might not otherwise eat!

What you need:
Olive oil
One onion, minced
One orange or yellow pepper, minced
Garlic, minced
3-6 cups broth
Vegetables (suggestions below)
Spices (suggestions below)
1-2 small cans tomato sauce
1-2 cans 14 oz diced tomatoes
1-3 cans of beans (black, navy, pink, etc.)
1 can corn
Cooked chicken, 1/2-1 c shredded (optional)
Cooked rice or quinoa (optional)

Amounts of ingredients are based on how big of a batch you would like to make. I make a HUGE batch.

 

What to do:
Sauté minced onion, pepper and garlic in olive oil

Add stock


Bring to a medium boil and add root veggies (turnips, carrots, etc)


Make sure there is enough stock to cover the root vegetables. This will vary based on how big of a batch you’re making.


Next I add the spices! I don’t measure anything 🙂 but toss in what you like! I use just a shake of cayenne because the children don’t like it too spicy. Let that boil while you prep the next things. About 10 min. Or longer if you have children who always need 5 million things while you’re making dinner. A good place to do some clean up around the kitchen.

Then add diced tomatoes and tomato sauce.
1 can each unless you have a large batch then I add 2.

Next add broccoli

Then add raw green beans, asparagus, celery etc. I chop these while the broccoli is boiling.


Then add chicken, if you’re adding.

Keep the soup at a medium boil.

When you’re about 20-30 min from eating, add beans and corn, drained (can simmer longer too if needed) and zucchini and squash.

About 10-15 min before eating add any rice or grains you’d like to add. I’ve used this at Pam’s suggestion but also added home-cooked brown rice or quinoa. Bring to a low boil. If you keep longer than the 10-15 minutes, have it at a low simmer.


Ready to serve and freeze!


Leave a comment

Sweet Potato Black Bean Chili

IMG_8782.JPG
Oh and bacon. But if you are vegetarian or vegan is it very delicious without the bacon also!

What you’ll need:
1 yellow pepper (or orange)
1 onion (yellow or whatever you have)
6-7 pieces of cooked bacon (nitrate free) (optional)
3-5 medium Sweet Potatoes
4 cloves minced garlic
2 TB chili powder
2 tsp oregano
1/2 tsp Kosher salt
2 tsp cumin
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper (or more to your liking)
2-3 cups broth
1 can diced tomatoes
2-3 cups cooked black beans (or 2 14 oz cans)
Olive oil
Avocado (not pictured but awesome)
Sour Cream

What to do:
If using, cook bacon (I use the oven*)
Put olive oil in a large pot
Sauté onion and pepper and sweet potatoes till onion is soft
Add spices and garlic
Add broth, beans,  and tomatoes
Chop bacon into bits and put 1/2 into the pot
Simmer for 20-30 minutes based on how soft you like the sweet potatoes

Garnish with bacon bits, avocado and sour cream.

 

 

*To cook bacon in the oven, line a cookie sheet with foil (if the cookie sheet does not have sides, create sides with foil). Place bacon on foil in oven and turn on to 400. Check after 15 min and then leave in until desired crispness.

 


1 Comment

A Company I Can Trust

Post 10.2Over the years, many people have asked me WHY Shaklee? What makes Shaklee different from other companies?

When I was looking for non-toxic cleaner, bio-available vitamins and skin care that was safe, I found Shaklee. And what stood out to me wasn’t the products as much at first, but the company. This company had HISTORY. And this company had INTEGRITY.

What has always stood out to me is the Shaklee Difference. Shaklee is committed to purity, potency, and proof.

And it’s not surprising…Post 7.3

Shaklee is a leading global natural nutrition company. They are the ONLY company in the world with PROOF of the long-term health benefits of its products.

They are committed to creating the highest quality of natural products to keep you and your family healthy. Shaklee guarantees that every product is 100% safe and the proof is in their clinical research. Shaklee has published 125 scientific papers and presentations, 90 of which are in peer-reviewed publications medical journals.  The Chairman & CEO of Shaklee is Roger Barnett.

So the integrity is not only in the science, but in the business. From the top, through the field, there is a level of commitment to doing the right thing for people. Read Forbes’ interview with Roger Barnett to learn more about his values and commitment to doing the right thing.

And if that isn’t enough, the bigger picture of Shaklee is seen in what they have done for the world–far outside the marketplace.

This is just a brief look at why I trust Shaklee for my family, my friends, and the people that I am a health and business advocate for.


Leave a comment

Crock Pot Vegetable Soup in Beef Broth

Want a yummy, hearty soup for this cold weather? Try this one!

IMG_1238

Ingredients:
1 stalk celery chopped (save the ends!)IMG_1210
5-8 carrots chopped
2 zucchinis chopped*
1 yellow squash chopped
Fresh spinach
14-16 oz garbanzo beans (cooked or canned)
5-6 cups homemade beef broth (see below)–or other broth
1/2 tsp sea salt
1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
2 gloves garlic, minced

*The smaller zucchinis and yellow squash (looks like a yellow zucchini) have the most nutrients so stick with those

Simple Directions:
Put broth, carrots, celery and spices in the crock pot
Cook for 6 hours on low
Add zucchini, squash, spinach and garbanzo beans
Cook for 2 additional hours (or more for additional softness)
Even the littlest mouths enjoy!

IMG_1244
Homemade Beef Broth/Homemade Italian Beef
To make homemade Italian Beef: Put a large, fatty, bone-in roast in the crock pot. Add generously: sea salt, garlic powder, oregano, and basil. Cook on low for 10 hours. Add 5-6 pepperchinis and cook for an additional 2-4 hours. If you forgot to put it in early in the morning, put on high to 2-3 hours to get it started.

After making Italian Beef with a fatty, bone-in roast, save the roast and extra fat (can be frozen for later). Place in crock pot and fill with water. Cook on low for 6-8 hours. Add additional sea salt and garlic powder if needed.

IMG_1176