September 30, 2013

4 Mile Race Recap!

Last race: May 2012, 5 months pregnant.

Training: began jogging 20 mins or so while pushing Santi in the Bob stroller a couple months ago, 1-2 times a week (in our neighborhood that includes a steep hill). Walking 5-6 days a week for 30 minutes. Yoga, squats while brushing my teeth, push ups and the like every so often during the week when time allows.

In other words: very little training for a road race, but maintaining a pretty active lifestyle and building up muscle/endurance little by little.

Diet: been eating 801010 since May of this year. Fruit meals, fruit and green smoothies, giant salads at night and sometimes steamed vegetables. High raw, high carb, low fat, no more beans, grains (I tried out this "diet" to help heal my gut from frequent bloating, gas and general over eating on *expensive* nuts and seeds). I do eat avocado once in a while or some seeds.

Basically: Raw fruit. Raw and cooked vegetables. Little avocado or seeds (half an avocado every couple days, or a handful of seeds blended into a salad dressing once every couple of weeks, if I feel like taking that much time in the kitchen!).

Race: 4 miles. Fairly flat course. 70* F.

What happened before the race:
*start drinking 1 L water once I wake, takes me about an hour*
5:30am wake, nurse baby, get ready
6:00am yoga, talk to Jesus, do pelvic floor exercises
6:20am work on computer finishing Santi's 11 month video
6:50am bible time
7:00am watermelon!
9:00am race.

What happened during the race:
• Slight chest pressure after a couple miles - from lack of training and bringing up my heart rate.
• Zero knee, ankle, hip pain praise the Lord!
• Went at a comfortable pace without a watch, listening to my body and picking up the pace toward what I assumed was the near end.

Post race fuel:
• water (8oz)
• 1/3 large watermelon
• a little later a 4 banana/spinach smoothie
• More banana/spinach smoothie once we got home a few hours later.

The stats. 
OH them stats! So, as I mentioned I just, basically... ran. I didn't have a goal really, except to "obey" my body if it said, "THAT HURTS!" and to enjoy each step. It was a gift to spend the entire time talking to Jesus, as if I were with a running buddy and talking about life with them the whole way. I can see why people love themselves a running pal, because talking to someone makes the run/race even more enjoyable! And, well, in this case, I can't imagine many strangers being super stoked about me starting up a conversation with them mid-race. Especially for those with earphones on, listening to their favorite tunes. "Oh hi! You like to run? Me too, like to run. Your first race? Many races before? What's your goal? Just for fun? PR? I like your shoes, nice running shirt. How do you keep your earphones from falling out once you start to sweat?" Hmmm... nope, still seems like it wouldn't be appreciated. 

I hoped to cross the finish line before the 45 minute mark. Before I ever ran "fast" (which to me, is nothing less than a 25 minute 5K, or 8ish minute miles. That might be really, really bad math, but it's been a while since I ran and timed all of that business!) I could comfortably run 10 minute miles. My very first 5K in February 2009 took me 35+ minutes. So I gave myself the 45 minutes for 4 miles. We realized we did not bring a race watch as we were leaving the house, but I told Edu to leave it since I didn't want to pressure myself.

Once I saw the finish line near, I was glad. I really had no idea of my race time, and felt like I took the race pretty steady and on the slower side, which my legs and body seemed thankful for. I can't remember if I noticed it on Edu's face when he saw me run up to the finish, but apparently he wasn't even paying attention since he also expected me around 40+ minutes. I could tell as I got closer to him that he was excited about my earlier than expected arrival time.

time: 35:31
average pace: 8:53/mile

I felt great. I finished, caught my breath (yes, my heart was beating at rapid speeds against my chest - oh do I remember those days!) and greeted my family. Their faces made me happy. My hubby's happiness made me happy. Our baby boy made me happy. Lots of love. It's beautiful to see God's love shine through the love He places in other people's hearts. It was a great day. We followed race fun with a visit to my cousins who live nearby, and then a bunch of food at home, and a day of rest and relaxation. That's not true, we probably went grocery shopping and spent the whole afternoon doing stuff. I can't remember. I told you this all happened last month, right? Labor Day? Yeah. Long time ago. I'm ready for race #2!

September 29, 2013

Peaches n' Greens Salad

For this reason he had to be made like his brothers, fully human in every way, in order that he might become a merciful and faithful high priest in service to God, and that he might make atonement for the sins of the people. Because he himself suffered when he was tempted, he is able to help those who are being tempted.

Hebrews 2:17, 18 NIV

Jesus had to be made like us. Jesus had to be made human in order to be made into the incredibly loving, merciful, faithful, just, glorious, high priest that fully served His Father, God. He also had to be made human so that He could be the living sacrifice for our sins, as He shed blood on the cross and died - and rose again three days later!

He had to be made like us, so that we can relate to Him. We suffer and we say no one knows how I FEEL!

Jesus suffered. Jesus suffered miserably to death on a cross.

He had to be made like us, so we don't feel completely alone.

We feel trapped in temptation, claiming NO ONE KNOWS HOW HARD THIS IS!

Jesus was tempted. Over, and over, and over again.

I am amazed at how our Creator decided to give us His Son in such a real way. Jesus was made human so that we could really relate to Him in so many ways. It's so much more personal that way, and all the more we can be comforted in our many trials because Jesus Christ knows what we are going through.

Praise the Lord!

A peaches and greens salad, loaded with tomatoes, because even though Summer is over - organic peaches still have a huge place in my belly's heart! This is my, well, in Summer time was my go-to salad when the peaches were ripe. The juicy goodness of both peaches and tomatoes make this bowl require zero salad dressing, and the sweet fruit dances with the greens all over your billions (accurate? I don't know, ask Google) of taste buds. If peaches are slowly leaving your produce section, feel free to use any juicy fruit. Even a handful of mandarins, or a bunch of navel oranges, shoot - grapes, apples, cucumber, mango, bananas - have fun with your fruit and green salads! There are no limits, restrictions, or rules. Okay, there is one rule: if it tastes gross, don't eat it. I don't know how well bananas and tomato will "dance" on them taste buds... but feel free to go wild!

Peaches n' Greens!
Serves 1
  • 1-2 heads of leaf lettuce
  • 4-6 peaches*
  • 2 beef steak tomatoes
  1. Wash, dry, and chop your greens.
  2. Place them in a bowl.
  3. Wash, half, remove pit of your peaches, dice
  4. Place them atop the greens.
  5. Wash, chop up your tomatoes.
  6. Place them atop your peaches and greens.
  7. Eat!
And you thought eating fruits and vegetables was hard, didn't you? Silly rabbit.

*based off of how hungry you are!

September 26, 2013

Birthday BBQs

But even if you should suffer for righteousness’ sake, you will be blessed. Have no fear of them, nor be troubled,
1 Peter 3:14

For it is better to suffer for doing good, if that should be God’s will, than for doing evil.
1 Peter 3:17

Even if I suffer for righteousness' sake, I will be blessed. Even if, by opening my mouth and talking about Jesus, I lose friends, I am hated, I am rejected, even then... I will be blessed. Unfortunately, I don't usually talk about Jesus, with the exception of this blog.

I don't want to lose friends (I am selfish), I don't want to be hated (I am proud), I don't want to be rejected.

"It's as if we think we are too good to be persecuted." It's as if I think I should avoid persecution completely and I know how to do so: keep my mouth shut at every opportunity I am given to talk about how amazing Jesus Christ is.

I want to be persecuted. Jesus Himself was persecuted, and killed. Do I think I deserve an easier life than Him? How do any of us, sinners flawed wicked rude prideful selfish, think we should have it better than Jesus - perfect, loving, Son of God, kind, giving, humble, selfless servant.

I want to talk about Jesus. I want to share all He is to me. I want to tell everyone how God, Jesus' Father and mine, has lavished so, so much upon all of us and He gives us the free will to follow Him and receive these gifts or...follow this world and receive absolutely nothing but despair.

"For it is better to suffer for doing good, if that should be God’s will, than for doing evil. "

Praying. For boldness. To be more like Christ. To share freely. To be honest and loving in the truth.

To stop being a fool who keeps their mouth shut all. the. time. Except to crack jokes, discuss nothingness and attempt encouraging those around me without having to actually say anything about Jesus.



My husband and my brother have birthdays in the month of August. My mom in her creative, mama-wisdom decided that not only was a BBQ in order for the family in order to celebrate, but a combined birthday bash was supreme. So we chose a menu, we invited all, we had birthday cards for both the boys/men/dudes. And we BBQed.

Oh, and side note: I took only 4 pictures (exaggeration) - not one of the food (what did we eat?) and not any great ones of the birthday boys. I s'pose I was focusing on baby more than camera, and I'm slightly (lots of?) insecure with my "hey, can I take your guys' photo?" willingness to ask before I shoot.

I really enjoy family get-togethers, and I know my family can agree.  Its funny how not-so-often our family sees each other when there are no birthdays or holidays happening. This is the reason all of us kids (there are four of us) need to calculate child bearing to happen on the months that we don't already have birthdays and/or holidays. That way, we have an excuse to see each other's sweet faces at least once a month. Right now we are left with the following months open (so giving birth on these months is highly recommended and encouraged): January, March, June & October. Let's do this!

September 22, 2013

Food Organization & Storage

For to which of the angels did God ever say, “You are my Son; today I have become your Father” ? Or again, “I will be his Father, and he will be my Son” ? And again, when God brings his firstborn into the world, he says, “Let all God’s angels worship him.”

Hebrews 1:5, 6 NIV

Jesus is a big deal. He isn't, like many false religions claim, "just a prophet" among other prophets. He is the Son of God. The angels worship Him. In the same, He is God Himself.

I am in awe.

The incredibly gracious gift that God gives us to receive Christ Jesus as our Savior and Redeemer leaves us with His Spirit living inside of us. This means that GOD dwells in our hearts through Jesus. How is it that the Creator of this world, our Father who knows and sees EVERYTHING we do, think, or say, would love us so much that He gifts us with His presence? His unconditional love? His abounding grace? His never ending forgiveness? He knows how wicked out hearts are, yet He gave us Jesus.

Jesus is a big deal.

I have often been asked the question,  
"how do you eat all your food before it goes bad?"
since fresh fruits and vegetables don't have a long shelf life, and we buy them in abundance. Here's secret #1: Costco sells very unripe fruit. You know what this means? Well, first, it means you shouldn't eat it right when you get home (exceptions are their watermelon, apples, sometimes half the box of oranges, etc), and second, it means that it can sit in my kitchen for days and days and not go bad. I just recently learned about what ripe fruit is, tasted like, and does to my body (good things) so I used to struggle with fruit storage because I would immediately throw everything in our fridge once we got home from shopping. This was a weekly unhappy event, because little by little our fridge became more crowded and difficult to pull food out of. T'was a fruity, veggie traffic jam.

Which brings me to the following solutions. I hope you enjoy and can use some of these tips n' tricks to keep your fruit and veg from spoiling! Happy plant eating, friends!

Tip #1: buy a pantry, or decide to use counter space
We could easily store all of our unripe, or partially ripe fruits on our counter tops. In fancy bowls, or simply sitting directly on the counter, for all the world to see, and for pops of color and aroma around the kitchen. But we really enjoy empty counter tops, and they are much easier to clean when I make fruit juice messes while chopping up juicy oranges, or blending greens and bananas. So we opted for a pantry. We purchased ours at Ikea and it fits perfectly in a corner of our dining room. I also liked that everything would be behind closed doors, so once one fruit begins to ripen and release "we're ripe!" gases, the other fruits would follow its lead (these are also known as ethylene gases and are hormones in the fruit that produce growth of ripening goodness). Also, it gives the fruit flies a warm home away from my face. 

Tip #2: feel your fruit! 
When you purchase your fruit and bring it home, give it a good squeeze. Many (but not all) fruits are soft when ripe. Here's a list of what we eat that is ripe when soft: pineapples, figs, avocado, mango, nectarines, peaches, cantaloupe, oranges, kiwi, even tomatoes and bell peppers should be a little soft for easier digestion!

Here are our potatoes and avocados hanging out on the counter. Once the avocados ripen to soft, creaminess, we transfer them to the fridge and they last over a week (life span from the day of purchase to day of consumption usually is a couple days on counter, 5, then 3-4 days in fridge). The potatoes should not be refrigerated because they lose awesomeness. Same goes for zucchini, tomatoes, bell pepper, cucumbers... We only toss them in the fridge if they are looking extra soft and about to spoil. 

These are our bananas enjoying each other's company while we wait for them to ripen. Remember: yellow and green bananas are not ripe and if you eat more than one expect discomfort, bloating, constipation, etc. I like comparing the consumption of a green or green-ish banana to that of a raw potato. Our bodies cannot digest it well, you might not feel great afterward, and no - it's not because plant foods aren't good for you - it's because you're eating them when they ain't ready! Let them ripen, goodness me. I never knew this. Now I do. Now I can eat 15 bananas in a day and feel amazing. Leopard bananas for the win!

Leopard bananas to the fridge, very ripe and won't last outside of the fridge for much longer. Bananas straight from the fridge are like little ice cream sticks, by the way. An ice cream you can bite into and not get brain freeze from! Creamy, sweet, oh delicious.

Tip #3: Leafy green vegetables and peeled veggies to the fridge!
We bought some Tupperware (middle, left) for half of the greens, there are about 3-4 heads of leaf lettuce in there. The rest is stored with the bags open a bit, greeting us as we open the fridge doors. I have recently been storing the bags of kale in the freezer since that baby kale from Costco doesn't last very long and I have had to throw handfuls away each time I use a bag. It leaves a lot more space in the fridge and makes the smoothies extra creamy! Also see our broccoli, carrots, peppers (they can be stored outside of fridge but I don't have much room so I have gotten used to putting them in the crisper), lemons and limes (also should be stored outside of fridge but mine sometimes mold with the humidity of the cabinet and/or the warmth of the kitchen from cooking hubby's foods).

We find that we don't have to toss almost any vegetables this way, especially leafy green vegetables (the greatest gift from God - so many nutrients!).

So there you have it! If I left out anything, let me know. Our fridge has already changed quite a bit since I took these pictures a month ago, so I might do another one of these with changes we have made. These are tips that are pretty basic, a lot of people already do them. I think the main take away is what to do with so much fruit as it ripens so quickly at times.

  • Use your fridge. 
  • Use your freezer. 
  • When freezing, always peel and chop your fruit before storing. Feel your fruit often to check for softies, softies to the fridge immediately. 
  • Don't buy too much food if you're not going to eat it. Always buy a little less as you learn how much you and your family can go through before the next shopping trip. 
  • Freeze your greens, too, but only freeze your greens if they will be used for smoothies - if you use the greens for salad, do not freeze them or they will be a wilted, not so crispy mess on your plate.
Happy ripe fruit consuming!

September 17, 2013

Hubby turns 33

Hubby and I just finished reading first and second Corinthians and he thought it would be awesome to open up the book of Hebrews next. I haven't read the entire book of Hebrews before (except for through church in 2011, but the lack of note taking in the margins tell me I wasn't really paying attention), so I am excited to hear what God inspired Paul to share!

Read with us :)

In the past God spoke to our ancestors through the prophets at many times and in various ways, but in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son, whom he appointed heir of all things, and through whom also he made the universe. The Son is the radiance of God’s glory and the exact representation of his being, sustaining all things by his powerful word. After he had provided purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty in heaven. So he became as much superior to the angels as the name he has inherited is superior to theirs.

Hebrews 1:1-4 NIV

In the past, which we see in the Old Testament, God spoke to people through prophets like Moses, Abraham, Isaiah and many others. It's hard for me to imagine life without Jesus at that time. He hadn't come yet, but people anticipated His arrival (Isaiah 9:6). There weren't even bibles to read, study, meditate on and follow. So they relied on God's message to be given verbally (and written like the letters from Paul to the church of Corinth) through people who followed Him.

Now, praise the Lord! We have been given His Son, Jesus Christ who speaks to us. We have the Holy scriptures filled with letters written by men and women of Christ, led by the Holy Spirit with a propose.

Another impossible-for-us-to-understand verse is that through Jesus Christ, God made the universe. Wait... Didn't Jesus come a little bit later? God sent Him to us as a baby just some 2,000+ years ago. Yet the prophets before Him lived hundreds of years before they died, so how was Jesus present during the creation of the world?

You have to live by faith.
We will always have questions.
We will always have doubts.
It's impossible for us to fully comprehend the mysteries and wonders of God, because He is GOD. That's a big deal. He's absolutely Holy and perfect and sovereign over all things. Why would our minds be able to grasp all that He is?

I like not knowing it all. I like being reminded that I'm not God. I'm a child. Seeking to follow Him, and failing often. But by His grace, I am loved and forgiven. He guides me still. He never gives up on me.

He never gives up on us.

He KNEW when He created the world, that we would fall, that we would turn our backs away from Him, that we would despise and reject His teachings, that He would have to give up His one and only Son so that we would not all die and be forever separate from Him, but that we would be given the opportunity to run to His arms, repent, and give our lives to Him.

He knew we would be wicked. But He still made the world. He still loves us and continues to give new life.

"The Son is the radiance of God’s glory and the exact representation of his being, sustaining all things by his powerful word."

Jesus shines God's glory perfectly and fully. He is God. Again, we are completely incapable of grasping this as Jesus is God yet Jesus is God's Son - so we rely on faith. I have faith. I believe this all to be true.

After He died an agonizing death on the cross for our sins, He was resurrected after three days and now sits at the right hand of God, His Father, The Majesty, in Heaven.

And He reigns over the angels. The perfect angels. Worshipping Jesus constantly.

Heaven sounds incredible.

My husband turned 33 years old on August 1st. Funny how October 1st, 2 entire months later, is coming soon. Funny how behind I am on posts.

This man named Eduardo is a gift from the Lord. It was Edu's birthday, but at the same time I felt like I was the one being lavished with an incredible gift. Seeing my hubs sitting with our then almost-one-year-old baby boy. Feeding the two a watermelon cake with a side of non-whipped coconut cream (mainly because I didn't want to dirty another dish, and because Edu is gentle and kind and doesn't mind a silky coconut cream to drizzle on his cake), giving him something as simple as a hand-written card, a half mama/half Santi painted picture, and going to sushi for dinner - in a small restaurant where we were the only couple present.

It's the small things, that make big memories and fill our hearts. Praise the Lord for 33 years of age, 33 years of growing in Him, 33 years of becoming a wonderful man. I love this guy.

And Santi is pretty smitten of him, too.

September 13, 2013

One Year Old.

He went and did it. He turned 365 days old.

On The Move!
He crawls one legged, he stands from sitting, sits (with a thud) from standing, falls from standing and scares me because I never know what he is going to land on, and he walks with help, as long as you hold one of his hands. His crawl has increased in speed, especially when he is determined to reach whatever it is that is calling his attention, which is either a family member, another child, or kitchen tools (I'm leaving out iPhones, iPads and Androids since we normally don't place those as "bate" for him to grab, only to take them from him and say, "no, not a toy, Sants pants!"). He loves balancing in stand mode, holding onto the camera lens, tortilla warmer or other random object that fits well in his hands. He is capable of taking a few short steps on his own but isn't confident or fantastic at balance yet, so walking may be months away (or days away, ahhhh!)

Speaking Santi!
He has been babbling a whole, whole lot. So much so that most of the time we stop mid sentence and just look at him as he says his long sentences in babe language. His favorite words are, "dadada" and "oh, oh, oh!" But he has yet to consistently point at something and associate it with a specific sound. He does love interrupting us adults, though, and brings his voice up a few octaves when we are deep in conversation around him. I love mimicking him like I know his secret language, but then I realize I should probably be the one encouraging him to say actual words. I'm convinced his babe language is legit, though, since I have caught him numerous times, when we are out and about, immediately turning his head toward other babies as they begin to talk. WHAT ARE THEY SAYING?!

Baby Potty Training
So we initially were doing well with this. Every time we saw Santi bearing down to go #2, we would sit him on the potty and voila! It was pretty fantastic and made us feel like we had an awesome, gifted, easy-to-potty-train baby boy that only exists in parent's dreams. Then we got a little lazy, realizing he was ready to poo and telling him, "poopy!" But not dropping what we were doing to bring him to the potty. That brings us to where we are now: we sit him on the potty upon waking up in the morning, after car rides if he hasn't had a poo in a while, or after his nap (again, only if we think he is ready to poo). If we notice him going in his diaper during the day, we half the time bring him to his potty. Sometimes we are too late, and he already magically filled his diaper in less than 2 seconds, and other times he goes. Moments occur when he is playing while I cook, I notice him bearing down and decide not to stop mid-food prep and bring him to go potty. I can't imagine what trying to catch all their "#1's" would be like. Numbah 2 is pretty easy, but 1? At nighttime? Oh man. I know it's doable, we just have to decide whether we want to take it head on now or later.

On Sleep and Naps
I'm glad I didn't hear a voice inside of me over the past months, telling me to give you all an update on "sleep training at ___ months!" because my oh my does this boy's schedule change! Like you always hear, baby's sleep schedules change often. Again, like you have been told, right when you figured them out and they are sleeping oh my goodness perfectly, they will completely change on you and you will stay up later than late on mama forum's reading, "7 month old not napping" or "11 month old waking 13 times in the night" or "1 year old sitting up in his crib and deciding that he forgot completely how to nap and only remembers the art of screaming and is a new born baby apparently since I have to nurse him to sleep every single time and... my head hurts". So, instead of giving you a run down. Here is where he is at right now:
  • he wakes around 7:45-8:30am
  • first nap after about 3-4 hours of wake time (11:30 or so)
  • naps for 1-1.5 hours
  • second nap "attempt" after 3-4 hours of wake time (4:30 or so)
  • naps 40 mins to an hour (ish)
  • bedtime around 8pm
  • wakes to nurse around 4am-5am then sleeps some more
Every day is different, every night is different. I am still surprised when he sleeps "through the night" from 8pm to 4am. He acts like he doesn't ever want or need the second nap, but we changed the routine to follow papa bear (who is with him all day on Mondays) who is convinced his routine is pretty stellar since, well, it works, and now Santi has taken a 2nd nap three times for me! That's huge. I think he went weeks without taking his PM nap, and on Monday my hubs told me he slept for 40 minutes in the afternoon. I was amazed. So I tried his routine the next day and it worked. The following day, not so much, the day after, it worked in full throttle 'cause we had to wake up Santi for swim lessons! My husband is a gift from the Lord.


The Nap Time Routine
This is key. Find a routine. Never change it unless under crazy circumstances. Your baby will thank you for consistency and your body will thank you for the extra sleep/rest/free time you obtain from having a good sleeper. Here is our nap time routine.
  • Nurse (papa gives him bottle)
  • Play for a little bit (less than 10 mins)
  • Diaper check
  • Let him play while I tend to diaper
  • Sleep sack
  • Story
  • Close blinds
  • Turn on white noise
  • Sing, "Jesus Loves Me" 3-4 times while holding him upright with his head on my shoulder
  • Kiss, say "night night" lie in crib
  • Leave, shutting door
I think the gem is singing, "Jesus Loves Me" so many times. I used to sing it once, hum it a second time while putting him in the crib toward the end of the second time. By singing it so many times, his mind has a chance to slow down, his brain gets in the zone, his body feels sleepy and sluggish and zzzz... Beautiful. We'll see what the rest of this week/month brings!

Swimming Classes! We enrolled him in swimming lessons this week! It is so much fun, he has never really felt water except for a little bit on his feet at the beach. Oh, and we bath him sometimes so I guess he has felt water somewhat often. The classes are two days a week for just 25 minutes. We sing, we help baby Santi kick, blow bubbles under water to encourage him to stick his face in the chlorine-filled, basically bacteria infested water and not drink it but to breathe outward(ly?) and enjoy deep water diving. He almost fell asleep the first class as we swam on our backs (well, him on my shoulder lying down with his ears under the water as I walk backwards) and yesterday he giggled as I blew bubbles. That's progress! The goal of the class, or so I have taken it, is to make the children comfortable with diving their heads under. It's pretty amazing seeing the kiddos that are ready for this already! I think the 6 month old, chubby blond baby boy in our class isn't ready for it, and neither is Santi.

Eat Plants
On food! During the day, he eats like his mama which is all fruit and greens. He nurses early morning, around 4-5am. Watermelon or cantaloupe in the morning, as much as he wants which is a lot. Mid morning an entire banana and a green smoothie made of banana and kale, banana and spinach, or banana and swiss chard. He nurses mid morning as well. He drinks out of my jar, so I don't know how much. I'd say a couple ounces. Later he will have another small fruit meal if he is hungry, or we wait until early dinner time with his papa. He then has steamed vegetables (all variety) and always half an avocado. Then he nurses another 2 times before bed. We offer him water in the day, as well. I'm going to up his fat intake by adding ground flaxseed to one of his banana meals. Sometimes he has grains cooked in water with nothing added to them, but only about 3 times in his life since we don't normally have "just rice" or "just quinoa" prepared, it usually has seasoning (for hubs) and lots of spice.

Spicy Baby
Side note. The other day papa Edu offered Santi some of his guacamole, which I usually mash avocado with lime juice to make, and add lots of salsa (serrano chili, tomato, salt and water) but recently I have just mashed avocado and lime together. So he offered him a bit, and I didn't think about it. Then Santi made the face - but not the, "woah, lime" face. It was "woah, woah, woah, what, ah ah ah ah ahhhh!" face. It was a guacamole I had put spoonful after spoonful of salsa in. He got over it. I was nervous. Enjoy, Santiago's digest system, your first serrano chilis.

Motor Skills to the Max
I think this is the right category for the following... Sometimes that has fascinated me for the past couple months are his motor skills. Watching him intentionally placing a toy cup inside of another cup, then taking it out and repeating time after time, marvels me. Just this week he started to put lids back onto everything, including the lens cover on our camera as I took photos of him. I take off the lid of his bottom-butter, hand it to him to play with while I change his diaper, only to see him placing the lid back onto the jar lying next to him.

He also has helped me stack his blocks, but not just one block on top of the other 3 that I stacked, he stacks and stacks up and up, block after block. He has only done this once, but it was so cool! He places toys inside of other toys, toys inside of the toy bin when we begin cleaning up. How does he know how to do that. God's complex creation of the human brain that starts off as a baby brain is absolutely a miracle and can only be explained because God is GOD and He is so great.

 One Year Old. 
We feel so full of the Lord's blessings. To look back on the year and all that He has taught us leaves us in awe of His grace, forgiveness and mercy. He is out source of strength when we are completely out, He is our Light when we find ourselves lost. Jesus is the example of how to be a self-less servant when all I want to do and find myself doing is putting my needs first, selfishly. He has opened my eyes to my flesh's sin nature, and daily I pray that by His grace I would be able to break free from the chains and live to serve Him by serving my family. It is a gift. Every hour of depending on Him is a blessing. Every day I fall, He picks me up before the evening. Every morning I dread x, y, or z, He comforts me through time in His Word and in His presence. We are praying that His will be done with our future, that we would be able to raise Santiago James in a way that honors Him and guides our little boy to Jesus. And we leave our desire for baby #2 in His good hands.

September 7, 2013

Orange, Pineapple n' Strawberry Smoothie

Better is one day in Your courts than a thousand elsewhere; I would rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God than dwell in the tents of the wicked. Psalm 84:10 NIV

Better is ONE day in the dwelling place of God, in His presence, or even near His presence. Better is just ONE day with Him than 1,000 _______ elsewhere. I hadn't noticed this until I read into the verse a bit - but notice how it doesn't say "a 1,000 days" or months, or years. It could be better is one day with the Lord than a thousand decades anywhere else!

To be a doorkeeper is basically to be a servant. Prefer to be a servant in the house of God, than a prince or ruler in the tents of the wicked.

Better is one day with our loving God, than a thousand years as master, as a ruler, without God.

I think of the book of Ecclesiastes and the author, Solomon. He had EVERYTHING we are all told that, once we obtain, we will be HAPPY. In modern times that would be: a home, a great relationship, money, a car, a successful job, etc. or we could go the other extreme and say: a life full of self-pleasing sin, sexual sin, abusing our bodies with drugs, excess alcohol, carelessness.

Guess what Solomon came to found when all of his boxes were checked off?

"Meaningless! Meaningless!” says the Teacher. “Utterly meaningless! Everything is meaningless.” Ecclesiastes 1:2 NIV

Life is just better with Jesus.

Life without Christ isn't life at all, it's death. Away from our Savior, tying to get by on our own, falling short constantly. Feeling drained, carrying heavy loads daily, drowning in our weakness.

In the past you were spiritually dead because of your disobedience and sins. Ephesians 2:1


But God's mercy is so abundant, and his love for us is so great, that while we were spiritually dead in our disobedience he brought us to life with Christ. It is by God's grace that you have been saved. Ephesians 2:4-5

Better is one day in the courts of God, than thousands elsewhere.

I have been, as you can tell (my faithful 3 readers!) busy. I have come to realize, by God's grace and power to humble us and open our eyes, that my priorities were a little off. I am juggling many tasks and responsibilities, as the Lord has placed them on my path, and giving Him each day, because He knows well I can not and will not make it spiritually or mentally alive if I try to depend on myself.

My priorities are as follows:
  • time with Jesus, time in His word, first thing in the morning. 
  • Shower, get ready, do pelvic floor exercises, they take up maybe 2 minutes and I need 'em or walking, jumping, and running won't be on my "things I enjoy" list (jumping, really? teehee!).
  • Food prep. I cut up melon, make smoothies, and dice a dozen fruits each morning (unless I am rock star and do twice as much work in a day, then the next morning I have "off" in the food prep department). This can and usually takes well up to an hour if I'm motivated and do a lil' extra.
  • Breakfast. I have to consume calories before the day starts (meaning either the baby girl I nanny arrives - around 8:00am most days - or my peanut wakes up - anywhere from 7:30-8:45am). I don't, however, finish breakfast as a priority. Since I eat high volume fruit meals for breakfast it takes me a good couple hours to finish so I take my time - no rush! Drinking lots of water from the moment I wake up is also a daily activity. 1-1.5 liters of H2O before I even pick up a fork for breakfast.
  • everything else. the "everything else" hardly ever happens. Many factors play into this, including how long I slept, how early I was able to wake up, how much time I joyfully lose myself in God's Word and/or prayer and don't want to stop, how much food prep, if Santiago wakes early, etc.
  • Everything else: my to do list (write letters, wedding cards, do paintings, Santiago's one year birthday invitations, exercise?!) blog.
Notice how blogging has taken last priority. I don't really want this to be the case anymore, though. Because I really believe God has given me this blog to use for His glory, so I want to take advantage of that.

Long introduction short: here's a post. I'm trying.

A smoothie recipe! Voila! This one will make your taste buds dream happy dreams.

Orange, Pineapple n' Strawburry Yum Yums
serves 1-64 oz load or 2-32oz jars
  • 1 pineapple, cut into chunks
  • 4 oranges, peeled and torn into smaller segments
  • 2 cups frozen strawberries *organic
  • 1 cup water
Blend! You might have to do this in 2 parts, depending on the size of your blender. Enjoy with a straw and an empty belly.

oh gosh. so good.