Eating Healthy – Progress Not Perfection {Recycled Post}

zirconicusso /

With all the new faces here, I thought I’d recycle a couple old posts here and there. This post was published January 2012. There’s also a part 2 and part 3 to this healthy eating mini series.

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This is the time of year people start making new year resolutions. Even if you’re the type of person who cringes at the idea of new year resolutions, you still probably entertain some similar line of thought. It’s a new year, a new start, a blank slate. New goals are only natural.

Planning to eat healthier in the year to come is a great goal, and a common one. Sometimes, though, we can go about our goals all wrong. If our goals are not broken down into clearly identifiable, measureable, manageable goals, we have nothing specific to aim at, or means of knowing if we’ve succeeded.

On the other hand, sometimes the problem isn’t a lack of specificity, but rather unrealistic timeframes for meeting our goals. We know what needs to be done, but we think it all has to be done TODAY. With this mindset, you might find yourself

  1. Tossing into the trash everything currently in your refrigerator, freezer, kitchen cupboards, and pantries because the ingredients, or process by which the food is made, are not healthy.
  2. In a single afternoon, purchasing from Craigslist a pair of goats, a dairy cow, dozen hens, a few pigs, and a plowing ox.
  3. Renting a cattle trailer, and picking up all the new farm animals from the 5 surrounding counties.
  4. Tying the animals to your garage, until your husband is done constructing the farm fence, small barn, and hen house.
  5. While the new heard of animals graze on their leashes, grabbing the ox, tying him to your waist, and plowing the soon-to-be strictly organic garden.
  6. Teaching your children the nutritional value of your chemical-free front lawn, while waiting to harvest the organic crops.

Whew!! Now … don’t get me wrong. You can do that. However, living a healthier, more organic, sustainable life should not equate to an unnecessary increase in stress. If it does, what’s the point?! So now you’re eating a “perfect” diet, but your family is falling apart, and your stomach lining is being slowly eaten away by ulcers. Way to go! ;)

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7 Ways to Stay Cool in Hot Summer Days

box fan

It’s that time of year of being hot and miserable! Or, if you’re a glass half-full kind of person, it’s the time of year to find creative ways to stay cool and comfortable.

A “perfect” weather day for me is bright and sunny (but enjoyed in the shade), low humidity, 72-75 degrees, and a light breeze. Ahhhhh … I know summer days can’t always be like that, but some days can be so hot, even I hate being outside. There’s usually something easy that can be done, though, to make even the most miserable days more enjoyable. [[... Click here to continue reading this post.]

Fruits, Vegetables, and Your Canine

Today’s post is mostly a fun post, but I’ve also included some things to know about fruits, vegetables, and your canine.

Bunker is our loveable doberman, our sweet little “boy.”

I recently taught him a cute trick where he’ll hold a dog biscuit or large chunk of a carrot on his nose, for what seems to be FOREVER. He’s so pliable and eager to please, he learned the trick instantly. In one of the photos, you can see him drooling while he stares at the carrot on his nose, waiting for me to give him permission to drop

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7 Benefits of Mulch


One of the first things I do when the weather warms up enough to go out and “play”, is replenish the mulch in my garden bed.

There’s a lot that can be said about this simple, organic garden helper. Mulch…

1. Acts as an Insulator. Mulch is a great insulator in both the winter and summer.

Adding a thick layer of mulch, right before winter, to plants that are just above the plant hardiness zone you live in, might allow them to survive the cold weather. The mulch will act as an insulator. However, if you live in

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Homemaking for the 5 Senses: Touch


Phiseksit /

As I was thinking through Jill’s Homemaking for the 5 Senses series, the Lord flooded my mind with ideas for the sense of touch. The sense of touch is not one we give a lot of thought to, but there are so many ways we can make our homes more inviting, more cozy, by maximizing the sense of touch.

1. Comfortable Front Porch Seating. John and I spend a lot of time just sitting on our covered porch, enjoying the scenery of our woods, and all the wildlife.

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Our Air-Conditioned & Heated Dog Houses

Today’s post is not a gardening post, but a subject dear to my heart – the comfort of animals, while they’re outdoors. (Don’t worry. I’ve been thinking through a bunch of gardening topics for the near future.)

John and I love animals, and can’t stand to think of them living in misery. To ensure our dogs are comfortable during our long days at work, and our incredibly long commute, John designed and built pampered daytime living quarters up by our barn. It’s not “glamorous”, but it’s very functional. We’ve added on a number of times, so it’s actually

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