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What I ate for dinner this week

I am not a chef, but I like to make food. I love being able to sit with my family and have a moment to regroup, talk or even watch a movie. It’s the family time in my home. I feel like the outside world is on hold while I enjoy my moments with the people I love.

Sometimes I eat quite a unique blends of foods and spices. I’d instead do that then let food go to waste. It also sparks creativity in me when the world can be so cold. These are the best thing about dinners for me.

What about you?

Penne Pasta with Pesto Tomato Sauce
Roasted Chicken with Carrots and Quinoa
Sausage and Peppers with White Rice
Potato Soup (Minus Liquid — I know, I hate soup though) with Garlic Bread
Stuffed Zucchini with White Rice
Greek Salad Mixed with other salad stuff and French Fries
Penne Pasta with Broccoli and Chicken

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Vegan Strawberry Ginger Muffins

These vegan strawberry muffins are quite soft and moist for a wholesome breakfast pastry or daytime snack. I am not a vegan, but some recipes are SO good that I can’t help making them over and over again. This is one recipe that I have modified over the years and did enjoy.

Prep Time: 20 mins
Cook Time: 25 mins

Servings: 12 muffins

Dry Ingredients:
½ cup + 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
2 cups all-purpose flour
2½ teaspoons baking powder
¼ teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon of ground ginger

Wet Ingredients:
1 cup almond milk
1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
¼ cup + 2 tablespoons coconut oil
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
lemon zest
1 – 1 1/2 cups strawberries (If frozen, add only 1/2 cup milk)

  • Preheat the oven to 375F.
  • Use coconut oil to grease the muffin tin and then set aside.
  • In a small bowl combine milk and apple cider vinegar and then set aside to allow the mixture to curdle.
  • In another bowl combine baking powder, salt, and baking soda.
  • For the liquids, get another bowl and combine the sugar, ginger, coconut oil, vanilla extract, and lemon zest. Once, add the curdled almond milk/vinegar mixture and stir to combine.
  • Stir in the dry ingredients until thoroughly mixed together. A few lumps are OK. Just don’t over-mix.
  • Fold in the strawberries (if frozen, drain liquid first).
  • Spoon into muffin tins, filling each cup about ¾ full.
  • Bake for 20-25 minutes until a knife inserted in the middle comes out clean. Remove from heat and allow muffins to cool before removing from the tin.

I love cooking. It brings me back to my creative elements. There is always a story behind the even recipe and alterations the is personal to you. I hope you enjoy this recipe too.

#veganrecipe #veganrecipe #veganrecipeshare #veganrecipeideas #veganrecipeblog #veganrecipebook #strawberryginger #muffins #strawberrymuffins #vegan #veganfood #veganfoodshare #veganeats #veganbreakfast #breakfast #food

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I don’t want to deal

This blog is just a free following piece about my day and feelings. I am sure it will be riddled with a ton of grammar mistakes, but that is my natural state of being. I am completely imperfect.

It’s a cold day in Brooklyn. I do not want to go outdoors but I must as my job is to be there. Most of the time I do not mind it, but today, it just seems unmeasurable in torture.

My daughter is sick, and I feel I should be here for her. I don’t see her enough and here I go, leaving her when she needs me. I worry that my actions will mess her up somehow, but I try not to think of it. I have to work. I have to provide support to her and my family.

I always worry that I am never good enough. I am also self-absorbed and stuck in my head. I keep wondering of what could be instead of what is now. I try to think of ways to be more present, but sometimes I fail. I am just not ready to deal.

It is cold out today, and I don’t want to deal. I would rather be indoors and help my child heal.

#family #familyandfriemds #familyframes #freeflow #anxiety #sick #anxietyhelp #anxietyrelief #anxietydisorder #anxietyattack #anxietysucks #random #rambles

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How to Make Co-Parenting Work

Co-parenting between the separated parents means that both have to share the responsibilities of children’s upbringing. Parents, who decide to do this, must cooperate to make it work. Following the co-parenting plan can be a
good start. However, saying it is easier than doing it. Problems will always rise especially in the case where parents haven’t resolved their internal conflicts.

The most common problem arising is that children keep seeing the ongoing battle between parents after the separation process. It’s unfortunate for the children because it will harm them psychologically. If you experience this problem, use a holistic co-parenting – which consider the arrangement of the co-parenting and the emotional aspect of all parties involved – to solve it. Here are the steps to do it:

Lose your fear
The reason why you keep fighting with your ex is that you still hold pain, as the result of the separation, within you. The pain derives from fear or trauma.

Can you see it now?

So fear or trauma is your conflict’s source. Now that you’ve found it, you have to lose it.

Here are the simple steps to do it:

  • Let all your fear out by writing them down.
  • Deal all your fear one by one.

For example, you’re afraid that you can’t handle the car’s matter which your ex usually did it for you. To lose your fear, go to the mechanic and learn how to deal with it. Once you manage to do it, you’ll gain confidence and fear no more.

Remember past fear and how you’d overcome i

This path down memory lane will make you think, “Hey! I’d overcome my fear. So I’ll be able to deal with this separation too.” This thought will strengthen you.

Cry out loud

Crying will help you in the process of losing fear. After that, you’ll feel relieved and see clearly. Thus, you’ll build positive communication with your ex who will likely give positive feedback for it. Once you do this, you have started a healthy co-parenting.

Ask your friends and family’s support

The process of letting out fear and afterward will take times. You’ll go through the ups and downs of the process. During the time, it’s better to ask for support/help from your friends and family.

As an outsider, they’ll be able to see your problem rationally. Therefore, at times you feel down, they can make you better and help you back to the track where you need to be to do healthy co-parenting.

However, if you think that your friends or family can’t help you due to whatever reasons, get the experts’ help.

Discuss the co-parenting in detail and make the win-win solutions agreement. Conflicts can also happen because of other aspects of co-parenting which are the kind of parenting style which you and your ex use in raising children and the financial matter. Therefore it’s important to discuss both in details.

During the discussion, let out all your thoughts of how you want the arrangement to be. Let your ex do the same. If both of you have differences, find the win-win solutions. So no one will be dissatisfied. Therefore no conflicts arise in the future.

Then make the agreement proved by the court. It’s an important step to do in a holistic co-parenting. This way you, your ex and most importantly your child will get all the deserved rights legally. In the case of unwanted events happen, the law will protect you.

Get me time

The next process you need to go through is that you must get your own me time. Spare time to do enjoying activities such as doing your hobbies, hanging out with your friends, meeting new people, traveling, etc. Do it while your child is with your ex.

Doing fun activities will refresh and relax you. You’ll get positive energy which will make you happy. Suggest your ex to do the same while your child is with you. That way, your ex will be happy too. The act of supporting your ex in term related to co-parenting is necessary also.

Because if your ex is in a healthy emotional state as you do, both of you can make your child happy as well. And this is the core of a holistic co-parenting.

Evaluate the co-parenting you’ve done

If conflicts still happen after all the efforts you’ve done. It’s time to evaluate the co-parenting arrangement. Asking the experts’ help is one thing you and your ex can do. They can give an objective evaluation, help both of you to figure out what’s wrong, and give alternative suggestions. After this evaluation, both of you may have to make a new decision about the co-parenting and repeat the above steps.

If conflicts still happen after all the efforts you’ve done. It’s time to evaluate the co-parenting arrangement. Asking the experts’ help is one thing you and your ex can do. They can give an objective evaluation, help both of you to figure out what’s wrong, and give alternative suggestions. After this evaluation, both of you may have to make a new decision about the co-parenting and repeat the above steps.

It seems tedious to do so but parenting – co-parenting or not – is a life’s time work. Just keep in mind that it’s for your beloved child. That way you’ll feel the hard work of co-parenting is worth to do.

#coparenting #parenting #divorce #blendedfamily #love #family #dad #children #kids #mom #son #marriage #stepparents #stepmom #daughter #bonusmom #stepson #familycourt #stepdaughter #stepkids #stepparenting #child #stepparent #bonuskids #bonusdaughter #bonusfamily #relationship #stepchildren

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2019 – I am Ready and Here is My List!

I decided to list my goals and joy prompts for 2019. I believe I am already working towards these goals, but they are a reminder that I am at the next leave of progress. My joy prompts a list of items that I would like to do. They are there when I feel stuck or want more out of a day, week or month. It is a great reminder just to enjoy life.

Goals for 2019:

  • Four Months of No Spend in 2019
  • Monthly Check-In with Hubby (Goals to Actually Work Together)
  • Spend at least 1 whole day per week with my daughter
  • No social media 30 minutes before bed (alarms work great)
  • No phone for 1 hour in the morning (timers are fantastic)
  • Be in bed at 11pm, Lights out by 12
  • Journal for Ten Minutes Each Day
  • Pay at $12,000 off (interest is too high)
  • Spend 1 night with my husband a week (No Interruptions)
  • Call, Email, Text, or Meet at least one person per day
  • Try to find ways to work online (shop, blog, freelance) Continue and Research ways to make money in a smart way
  • Build a solid client list for Pet Care
  • 10 minutes of Cleaning each Morning
  • Complete Two: 30-day Declutter Challenge
  • Check in with Ex at least once a week about my daughter and discuss any challenges
  • No clothes buying unless needed
  • Fix my Teeth ASAP

Things To Prompt Joy:

  • Read A Book from Cover to Cover While Marking It Up
  • Game Night
  • Drawing
  • Color in a Book
  • Taking the Ferry
  • Fruit Picking
  • Email A Friend
  • Respond to A Friend
  • Go Horseback Riding
  • Take a Class
  • A weekend away
  • A trip to See Family
  • Love Notes
  • Spend a day taking photos
  • Going to the Movie
  • Seeing the Sunrise
  • Seeing the Sunset
  • Listen to Audible Books (learn a subject)
  • Brush up with Spanish
  • Take care of plants
  • Sit in a coffee shop and read
  • Take A Yoga Class
  • Take a train ride to Upstate NY
  • Family Trip
  • A weekend indoors without worrying about money, work or entertaining
  • Try a new recipe
  • Connect with someone I haven’t been in contact in a while
  • Try a new food
  • Research someone I admire
  • Being Honest
  • Play Roblox while talking to daughter while on the phone
  • Make Sandwiches and Hand Them Out to Homeless People
  • Write Lists
  • Thrift Shopping
  • Hug Someone
  • Dusting
  • Swings
  • Sitting Still
  • Mediation
  • Cooking Dinner
  • Napping
  • A call to my sister
  • Send my grandmother a care package
  • Write a letter to a friend or family member
  • Music and Wine
  • Laundry
  • Being Home Early
  • Smile at the Sun
  • Get a Massage
  • Being Heard
  • Researching Better Business Practices
  • Excel Sheets
  • A new computer
  • Trying Something New
  • Creating a vlog
  • Creating a blog
  • Live life like a marathon (I work better this way)
  • Listen to a podcast
  • Go on a boat ride
  • Destroy a Book
  • Say yes with something I want to do
  • Say No and stick to it
  • Trust My Gut (it seems to work better than my head)
  • No work day
  • Notecards with inspiration
  • Todo list
  • One in / one out Rule
  • Walk Through Central Park
  • Cook a meal with my daughter
  • Doodle
  • Cuddling with Charlotte
  • Think about nothing
  • A quiet space
  • Classic Rock
  • Old Country and Folk Music
  • Showing Gratitude
  • Cleaning a cluttered area
  • Rearranging a space
  • Cookies
  • Work at my own pace
  • Accomplishing a goal
  • Making the bed
  • Exploring a Neighborhood
  • Drinking Water
  • Smoothies
  • Cuddling with a dog
  • Going over a todo list
  • When everyone is happy
  • Spa Day
  • Growing out my Hair
  • No phone days
  • Writing
  • Painting My Nails
  • Doing One Thing at a time
  • Paying Off Debt
  • Brushing a bush with my Hand
  • Setting a Timer
  • Talking to a friend
  • Hearing Laughter
  • Seeing my daughter’s smile
  • Putting on Makeup
  • Getting Dressed-up
  • Having a Lazy Day
  • Skincare Day
  • Showers
  • Lotion
  • The moon
  • Telling Someone why they inspire me
  • Holding the door for someone
  • Giving a little gift to someone
  • Hearing my daughter’s breath
  • Practicing Gratitude
  • Looking up and smiling
  • Cutting Paper
  • Not giving up
  • This is a quick list, and this post is to keep me accountable. What things do you have a plan in 2019?

#resolution #2019goals #goalsetting #joy #happiness #entrepreneur #nutrition #healthylifestyle #inspiration #gains #business #getoutside #lifestyle #dreambig #eatclean #life #selflove #hardwork #training #gethealthy #exercise #successmindset #muscle #nevergiveup #motivationalquotes #mindset #family

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What Type of Parent Are You?

Diana Baumrind, a developmental psychologist, noticed in 1967 that parents have basic constructs to raising their children. She saw a pattern within these parenting styles that can directly affect the outcome of the child’s development. Today, we call these the Baumrind parenting styles.

Each child we have are unique. They are different in everything. As a parent, raising each individual child is different. Parents have to be very flexible and able to adapt accordingly to each child and different ages. Although many everyone has their own distinct styles of parenting, there are four main types of parenting.

These four styles are:
Authoritative
Authoritarian
Permissive
Uninvolved

Authoritative parents are reactive to the child’s emotional needs while expecting a high standard or outcome for their child. These type of parents set limits and are very consistent in enforcing boundaries. Authoritative parenting tends to be found in the middle of the level and is said to be a balanced parenting style. Children have a tendency to be more confident and have empathy for others. They also have better self-control.

Authoritarian and authoritative parenting styles may have similar names, but there are differences in how these type of parents raise there child. While both parental methods demand high standards for their children, authoritarian parents will demand blind obedience without being the child much of a reason for their action. These type parents are stern in discipline and often use some kind of punishment to control children’s behavior. Authoritarian parents tend to be less nurturing than authoritative parents as they have the tendency to be unresponsive to their children’s needs. Children have the tendency to lack self-esteem and insecure. They may also some behavior problems.

Permissive parenting style tends to be low in structure and high in reactivity. Permissive parents set very little rules and boundaries. These type of parents are reluctant to enforce rules. These parents are very warm and lenient, as they do not like to disappoint their children. Although it is great to want to make your children happy, there are points in development where the child may possess egocentric tendencies and lack self-control.

Uninvolved parents are low demandingness and low responsiveness. These type of parents do not set firm boundaries or very high standards without indifferent to their child’s needs and are not really involved in their child’s loves. This group of parenting may unwittingly know that they are uninvolved as some in this group suffer mental issues that inhibit them from being involved in parenting properly. Children from this group may experience issues such as feelings of rejection, lack of self-esteem, and problems with trusting others and in the long run, children may be harmed emotionally.

So, which style?

In many longitude studies, researchers found that authoritative parenting is consistently linked to the best results for children. With these studies, it is assumed that the authoritative parenting style is considered the best and most effective parenting style by psychologists and psychiatrists.

This classification of parenting styles has been studied for over 25 years in different countries. Results are generally found in each parenting style.

However, studies are not 100%. There could be factors that make other types of style much more effective. It also depends on each childn’s temperament, personality and culture too. It’s the classic nature verse nurture debate.

So, what do we do with this information? The most critical part of parenting is trying to keep our kid in a safe environment. Its impact on a child is vital.

What parenting tips can you give to help raise a healthy and happy child? Please leave your comments below.

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Holiday Blues or Mistreated Illness? It’s never too late to get help.

Holidays have always been important in my family, especially Christmas. It was the one time of year that everyone around me just seemed to be in a better mood, and though there were little pieces of mood shifts, my anxiety and depression were always more at ease during this time. I love my family. I love the peace that that holidays brought to my family.

However, as I got older and my family got smaller because of death, disconnects or busy schedules and as I result, my mood became lower, and soon, I was not involved in any holiday festivities. I saw no point in celebrating when no one seemed to be into it. I certainly wasn’t.

My spirit died. 

I felt more stressed around the holidays, and instead of looking forward to them, I would anticipate the end of the season. I just wanted to go away and wait it out, be alone in isolation. I put my feelings on others because I couldn’t deal with myself. There was a point in my life that I wanted to divorce myself and not exist.

Deep down, I knew this wasn’t me. I knew I still loved the holidays, but I abstained from celebrating. I couldn’t let myself enjoy the holidays if other people were not happy. I even have my brothers and sisters that celebrate the holidays every year. I could have easily been with them. I just convinced myself that I did not need them and they did not require me to be there. Plus, at some point, during the years, I would have put a damper on to their celebration. I was incomplete with a void that could never be filled. How could a problem like this even be fixed?

I tied for years to “fixed” the problem on my own, but I only made it worse. The best advise I gave myself was to hide away until it was all over. This action was not making me happy. It was making me unstable. I was dying.

So, how did I get out of this dark hidden place?

The answer: I told someone. At first, I got the classic, “well that is silly” and felt invalidated. My mind was too sad to see any humor in their jokes or words of encouragement. I had a real problem going on in my head that didn’t make much sense to why it was an issue. I just wanted to it to go away before I took myself away from the problem a/k/a die.

Determined and finally acknowledging that I could not solve this problem myself, I opened up to others…anyone at one point. I finally found someone who gave me some kind of direction and that direction was to a therapist.

So, I went to therapy. Although, I realized that even with the acknowledgment of my problems, I would need to do my part to make things better. I could either choose to be miserable or start enjoying the simple things. I had to make peace with the guilt I felt for vanishing for so many years. I began to follow CBT (Cognitive Behavior Therapy), and I was put on anti-anxiety medications.

WIth opening up to my family (how awkward as it felt), following through with therapy, and understanding why I am anxious or get very depressed, I starting to see sparkles of light. I was not ready for the holidays during my first year of therapy, but I made sure to text everyone. Then I got the courage to call a few years later, and now I am finally starting to show up to actual holiday celebrations.

I count my blessings as I remember past memories, old traditions , and now the continuation of developing new positive moments. As I write this, I am listening to Christmas music that gets into my soul, which for the longest time I felt was dead. I started moving forward that year that I asked for help. It was those simple things I thought were lost that began to resurface. I had to acknowledge the new meaning, and I was fortunate enough to realize it before the darkness entirely consumed me. I thank my friend for starting this new chapter.

I will still get depressed, and I know I will get anxious for no reason except that my brain is inclined to do so…but I can manage it. I have my plans to get me through the storms.

Just like the saying goes, sometimes things have to get worse before they get better. For me, turning the negative thoughts into positive or matter of fact type thoughts (thank you CBT) proved to be successful. Now, I can appreciate the holiday season.

I know this is short and there is a lot of backstories to why I am this way, but the point of this short piece is to start somewhere and to not give up. You are your life, and your life is significant, even if it does not feel that way. It is…someone one out there is looking to you. It could be a neighbor, your family, the postman or even yourself. The vital first step is to realize that you have a problem and to express it before it gets any worse. There are many reasons why so many people get depressed or even worse commit suicide. It doesn’t have to be this way.

Here are some numbers if you are in a place that you need help but have nowhere to go:

If you’re struggling, take the time you need today for self-care and reach out to someone you trust. If you know someone who is struggling, reach out to them, get help. I am glad that I did. I would not be where I am today if I didn’t reach out for help.

Thank you.

#holidaydepression #suicide #gethelp #anxiety #depression #holidayblue #mentalillness