Week 3 Take Care Challenge
This week’s challenge only has to happen once. (So you can continue with the lemon water and greens if you like!)
If you’re like me, you have a running to-do list on the counter. Or maybe email reminders you send yourself. Or an app that helps you with all the to-do’s. It’s nuts.
This week, make a To Not Do List.
I will not fold the laundry. I will not wait in line to see Santa. I will not buy gifts for every single teacher. I will not organize the basement. Maybe these things have been weighing on my mind but I honestly know I won’t be getting around to it anytime soon. So there we go. Boom. Decided.
It feels so good.
What comes to mind first? Visit me on my Facebook wall and tell me what you know for sure is going on that To Not Do List. I’m there every morning at 10am ET looking to connect with you, my Clean Holidays crew.
9 Things I Definitely Don’t Need From Christmas Tree Shops
It doesn’t matter how cheap it is or how cute it seems in the moment. You probably don’t need a single item in your cart.
Like, at all.
And I say this with love. January credit card bills are no joke, especially when they last until next December! Eek. Trust me. We don’t need this stuff.
(Ok, MAYBE I need that $39 train table for my preschooler. I mean that’s a really good deal, right?! Right??? I’m getting it.)
1. Dunkin Donuts seasonal coffee
First of all, it grosses me out when stores like this sell food items. How long has this stuff been sitting in storage anyway? And why is Dunkin Donuts letting Christmas Tree Shops sell their product for so cheap? What gives? My guess is that’s it’s 5 years old and Dunkin Donuts was about to throw it all away when Christmas Tree Shops swooped in and bought it for pennies. Come on. Dunkin Donuts coffee isn’t even that great when it’s fresh.
2. Collectible Porcelain Lighted Houses
This translates immediately in my mind to broken pieces of porcelain all over the floor waiting for my 8 month old to eat it.
3. Set of 3 LED Crackled Glass Orbs
Great. These are already half broken to begin with. See #2.
4. LED Cushioned Floor mat with lights and sounds
The holidays can be overwhelming. When you’re in the sanctuary of your own home make sure to keep yourself stimulated with lighted, noise-making floor mats! (And if they make pillowcases, grab those too.)
5. 55 piece decorating tip set
You know what I use to pipe frosting? A ziploc bag with a corner cut off. I don’t know what you’re decorating or who you are decorating for, but I have never needed 1 decorative tip. Not to mention 55. These would instantly be commandeered by my preschooler to build a castle with his Legos anyway.
6. Pepperidge Farm Stuffing
Back to my rant about buying food at Christmas Tree Shops, see #1.
But here’s another reason to avoid this “great deal.” The ingredients! They include high fructose corn syrup, hydrogenated GMO oil, and calcium propionate (to retard spoilage.)
That calcium propionate is pretty important because any stuffing that doesn’t sell this year will be back on the shelf next year!
7. Novelty winter hats
Let’s just say that novelty anything usually ends up in the trash faster than you can say “Happy New Year.”
8. 5 Piece Fireplace Set
An iron shovel, poker, tongs and broom? Perfect ways for my preschooler to beat on his baby brother. And these are gonna cause permanent damage.
9. A Wine Purse
Honestly, I can’t decide if I definitely don’t need this or I TOTALLY need this. You make the call.
Totally Wild Rice Stuffing
The flavors here are reminiscent of traditional stuffing but instead of a pile of bread you’ve got something loaded with color and nutrients.
That’s a good thing. See? Nutrition is simple.
Add it to your holiday table or just try it out as a side dish during the week. It’s especially excellent to use as a stuffing for roasted winter squash.
- 2 cups uncooked wild rice blend
- 4 cups chicken or turkey stock
- 2 Tbl. butter or coconut oil
- 3 shallots, finely sliced
- Seeds of 1 pomegranate
- 1 cup chopped oranges or clementines
- 2 stalks celery, chopped
- 1 cup pecans
- 1 tsp. dried thyme
- 1 handful fresh sage, chopped
- Salt and pepper to taste, depends on your stock
- Combine rice with stock. Bring to a boil, then simmer until liquid is absorbed. Set aside in a large bowl.
- While rice cooks, heat butter or coconut oil in a pan over medium-low heat. Add shallots. Cook until browned, stirring every so often.
- Add cooked shallots and all other ingredients to the rice. Season to taste with salt and pepper (the amount will vary depending on your stock.)
- Serve alone or stuffed into a winter squash.
Sticky Chocolate Roasted Chickpeas
Chickpeas? Chocolate? You’re probably thinking I’m off my rocker here.
Go with it. You’ll be happily surprised.
I made a batch of these the other week and let my kids have at it. Even the baby managed to get a chickpea into his hot little hand. It took him awhile but I saw a big smile on his face 5 minutes later when he was chomping away.
His first taste of chocolate, can you believe it was on a chickpea?
- 1 15-oz. cans of chickpeas
- 2 Tbl. coconut oil
- ¼ cup pure maple syrup
- 2 tsp. cocoa or cacao powder
- Pinch of salt
- Rinse and drain the chickpeas. Spread on a lint-free kitchen towel or paper towels to dry off.
- Preheat oven to 400F. Line baking sheet with parchment paper.
- In a small bowl, combine maple syrup, cocoa powder and salt.
- Transfer chickpeas to prepared baking sheet and cook for 15 minutes.
- Remove from oven and add coconut oil to the chickpeas. It will melt from the heat of the pan. Use a spatula to mix and cover the chickpeas in oil as it melts. Return to oven for 10 minutes.
- Remove from oven and pour chocolate mixture over chickpeas, stirring and tossing to coat them well. Return to oven for 10-12 minutes. Cool before serving.
Mint Chip Chia Cream
Dairy-free dessert, coming up.
I’m not going to say that this tastes like ice cream. It’s not the same thing. But it’s creamy, it’s cold and it’s super yummy. Not bad, huh?
And chia seeds just happen to be nutritional powerhouses.
This recipe is another favorite from my Reinvent 21: Clean Living Immersion & Detox program. Clean living is delicious. Well, it is if I have anything to do with it! The next session of Reinvent 21 is happening in January and registration is open now. You should totally join us.
- 1 cup coconut milk
- ¼ cup chia seeds
- ⅛ tsp. peppermint extract, or a few drops of peppermint essential oil
- ¼ cup raw cacao nibs
- 1-2 tsp. pure maple syrup or 10 drops of liquid pure stevia
- Mix all ingredients together and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
Facebook Hangout Info
Every morning at 10am ET we will have a #cleanholidays check-in! We want to hear your holiday stories, challenges, setbacks and successes. I will be responding and everyone is welcome to offer suggestions and feedback.
Please take me up on this offer for support by visiting Facebook.com/FindUrBalance any time of the day – just look for the 10am post!