Thursday, March 29, 2012


It is not typical, this time of year, to be seeing TONS of buds and flowers everywhere you go!  This morning, I could not believe how many trees were in bloom, they are so beautiful! (Sadly, I was on a bike ride and did not have my camera).  Thankfully, I took some pictures at The Arboretum of South Barrington yesterday; the tulips were breath taking!

I rode my bike to the library so I could return some books and continue reading The Pillars of the Earth.  I am so close to being done!  I sat by the fire place and got lost in medieval Europe for a couple of hours!

Nice and springy!
Agenda for the day:

  • Read some more
  • Finish the children's cookbook
  • Research Juice Plus
  • Work (sadly, I close is what it is!)
Luana ola!

p.s.  I'll be doing a post on Kombucha soon!

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Weekend Trip

We took a nice vacation to northern Illinois, where we stayed with my parents (in their house) and walked around our forest preserve.  (I know, not technically a vacation, but it was nice to go back home for a bit).

The sun was out, the grass was beginning to turn green, and we were together walking through the forest.  When I was younger, I would wander these woods by myself and "get lost" in the beauty of Mother Nature. I got so used to the paths that I would wander off the trails and find my way through unmarked territory.  These next couple of pictures are of "my spot".  It is a cute area that I found one day and love to go back to see how it has changed.  
 If you go here at 9AM or 5:30 PM, you can usually see deer!  The first time I saw one walking by, I froze.  It was probably 10 feet away from me!
 This little river freezes in the winter (it probably didn't during this past winter) and dries up in the summer, depending on how much rain we get. I was actually surprised to see such a pool and good stream!

 Mom and Dad!!

 If you can't tell yet, I love taking pictures of nature.  This was just a random stump covered in moss.  It was much more pretty in person.
 Andrew being Andrew :)

Luana ola!

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Summer...Here I come!

     After eating holiday foods and being cooped up in the house for too long, getting outside and feeling the sun on your face is just the right thing.  Did you know that just 15 minutes of sunlight every day will give you the vitamin D requirements that your body needs?  Vitamin D is a fat soluble vitamin that aids your body in absorbing calcium; which we all know is good for strong bones, teeth, hair, and neuromuscular function.  Although we can find vitamin D in many foods (especially fortified foods, that I try to stay away from due to their over-processed state) like greens and almonds but, it is more fun to spend the day in the sun and soak up all that energy from it!

Breakfast consisted of chia seed pudding and strawberries with a cup of coffee; all enjoyed on the deck!
   Speaking of sun, this weather we are having is still baffling me, but it seems as though we will be getting some rain and cooler temperatures (60s) soon.  While the weather is nice, though, I thought I'd bring the tortoise (aka little girl, Gus, Gus-Gus, etc...) outside so she too can enjoy the warmth and rays.

My favorite picture!

She loves to climb and crawl!  Check out my facebook at see a video of her :)

Luana ola!

Monday, March 19, 2012

Perfect Sunday!

What a perfect day!  We slept in and said bye to Zak before he headed back to school.  It was too nice out and both of us were craving some fresh air and library time to read our fun books, so we grabbed our bikes, filled up the tires, strapped on our helmets and headed out.  

 The first stop was Office Depot.  Hancock Fabricks was not open yet, so we decided to take a look at some electronics.  I found this picture hanging on the wall!  "Achievement:  Unless you try to do something beyond what you have already mastered, you will never grow."
Next stop was the fabric store.  It was Andrew's first time in such a girly store, so the trip didn't last too long, but I wanted to go because they were having a sale on patterns.  I was looking for a cute skirt pattern (on the right of the picture below) and found a new Renaissance one as well!  The best part was that they were normally $18 each and I got them for $0.99!!!!
 Next stop...Library! (We did grab a bite to eat at a local pub, but let's just say we won't go back there...not our kind of place...)  While reading by the pond, we also got to watch a bunch of Mallard ducks!  They were all paired off; I'm not an expert on ducks, but I'm assuming it's mating season due to all  of the pairs.

These are the books we were reading.  Can you guess whose is whose???
 Also found an old friend!  I used to play this game when I was in grade school!!
Happy Monday and feel free to comment and follow my blog.  I'm trying to get at least 10 followers :)

Luana ola!

Saturday, March 17, 2012


Yesterday was just as beautiful as every other day from the past week.  I woke up before dawn, drank a cup of vanilla coffee and watched the sun come up as I had my yummy breakfast of soy yogurt with chia seeds, strawberries, and asparagus on the side.  Lately, I have been trying to add at least one serving of vegetables to breakfast.  The body can never get enough of their vitamins and the fiber helps to keep me satisfied longer.  
Andrew got me this beautiful Asian dinner set from World Market for Christmas!
 The day was spent cleaning the house, enjoying the sun while reading, and going for a bike ride in the afternoon.  A girl could not ask for more!

I also made a fresh slaw with half of this purple cabbage from Whole Foods!  It consisted of cabbage, carrots, cider vinegar, olive oil, thyme, Hawaiian sea salt, garlic, onion flakes, and a little sprinkle of red pepper flakes.  (I would have added more, but the people that are eating it don't like things as spicy as I do!)
 While on my bike ride, I found a neighborhood that I have not explored yet.  There was a bike path and this was at the end of it!  I stood there for a few moments to take it all in.  It's no Hawaii, but it was still peaceful and the closest thing I can get to for now.
 After a healthy dinner of spinach and black bean salad, Andrew and his brother, Zak, watched Paranormal Activity 3.  Considering how much I love scary movies...ehem...I went downstairs to listen to Celtic music and do some crafting.  I made a little hairpin for spring (see image below), 2 friendship bracelets (haven't made those in years!!!), and a Renaissance hairpiece (pictures to show you how it's done in the next post).

I had a very productive, fun, and relaxing day and I hope you did too!  Happy Saint Patrick's Day to every one and I'll be posting about the birthday/St.Patty's Day party tomorrow morning!

Luana ola!

Friday, March 16, 2012

Summer already?!

I don't know about you, but these past few weeks have been absolutely AMAZING!  The sun has been out, and it literally feels like summer with temperatures nearing 80 degrees Fahrenheit!!

Despite the hot weather, yesterday I had a yummy bowl of rolled oats with chia seeds and blueberries.  The blueberries were frozen, which is why my oatmeal turned purple!
I got to go for a nice run and then spent the rest of the afternoon at the library, doing research for my website that will hopefully be up and running soon.  Then, it was off to work, where I got to read for 3 hours because no one came in the store!  Man, I can not wait to get my R.D. and finally be able to do real work!

This weekend is Andrew's mom's birthday (on Saint Patrick's Day) so there should be lots of fun and pictures on my next post!

Luana ola!

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Spring is in the air!

I have officially planted my first herb of the season...garlic!

I know, I know, it sounds weird but I promise that there is a story to my madness.  First of all, yes, garlic is an herb.  It is technically part of the onion family, but because of its medicinal properties and the way it grows, it is considered an herb.  Second, the reason I planted one is because I found a few cloves sprouting out of the head of garlic in my herb drawer.  It is important to note that garlic should not be consumed once it starts to sprout, so I decided to try planting it instead of throwing it away.  (I hate to waste).

Some good things about garlic:

  • it adds lots of flavor without adding salt
  • it's an aromatic, which means that it heightens the senses while cooking
  • can lower blood pressure
  • is an aphrodisiac
  • can ward off vampires! (haha, or that's the superstition...)
Now for the day's events...Andrew and I had banana pancakes with chocolate chips for breakfast (whole grain, of course, and nothing artificial).  While he is studying, I will probably go for a run, do a little cleaning, and catch up on some reading.  Speaking of!!  I am reading The Pillars of the Earth and man is it a great book!  1000 pages long, but each sentence enticies the imagination!  I'll post a review when I am finished with it :)

Glad it's finally warming up and sunny!

Luana ola!

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Wellness Wednesday

Well, I've got to admit, I have fallen off the challenge.  No worries, though, because I am right back on!

Wednesday was a long day, which is why I am posting this morning.  For breakfast, I had a green smoothie of yogurt, strawberries, protein powder, and spinach.  I sipped that while on my way to Carthage for graduation gear up.  I spent the day up there with my friends and got to catch up; it was exactly what I needed!

Sorry for the lack of pictures!

Luana ola

Tuesday, March 6, 2012


Yesterday, I went into a health food store called Earthly Goods.  It is this cute little store in Gurnee, IL where I used to always go to find specialty items that could not be found at a regular grocery store.  The best part is that they had added a juice/smoothie bar since the last time I was there!  I have been getting really into juicing/green smoothies lately so you can imagine how excited I was to try their drinks.  Considering I have never had a wheatgrass shot before, something came over me that begged me to get one.

It came with an apple juice chaser!

Sadly, this little guy cost me $2.99!!!!  The good news is that after some research, I have come to find that it is very easy to grow your own wheat grass and costs practically nothing!  On top of that, there are some AMAZING health benefits! we go...

  • Wheatgrass is loaded with enzymes.  These enzymes help your body to quickly repair itself and can actually increase your lifespan by 20% or more!  Many people do not get enough enzymes, though, because they are broken down at temperatures above 106 degrees F.  This means that all cooked foods have minuscule amounts.  Eating raw vegetables and fruits and drinking wheatgrass is the best way to get these life-enhancing enzymes into your body.
  • Amino acids are another product that wheatgrass is loaded with.  They are the building block of protein.  Amino acid = protein = muscles/tendons/organs/glans/hair/nails.  As you can see, amino acids play a very important role in our bodies.  With being a vegetarian, I have to make sure that I get all of the 8 essential amino acids (aa) by grouping foods a certain way and eating a variety of foods.  Meat, fish, and eggs are the main foods that contain all 8 aa.  Whole grains carry 5/8 aa and beans or legumes carry the other 3/8 aa so it is essential that I consume both of those products every day to ensure balance.  Wheatgrass actually carries all 8!!!
  • Chlorophyll makes up 70% of wheatgrass and is considered green "life blood".  Chlorophyll is actually said to stimulate tissue growth and cell regeneration.  Fun facts follow:
    • The pulp leftover from juicing wheatgrass can actually be applied topically to tighten older skin and give it a glow.
    • It is anti-radiation and anti-inflammatory
    • It helps with mental depression because chlorophyll is the first product of light, which means that it contains light information and energy
    • It can improve varicose veins and skin disorders
    • Contains vitamin B12, folic acid, and iron; which all help in curing anemia and other blood disorders
    • Shortens recovery time after a workout
    • It suppresses appetite.  One glass of juice is a meal replacement because it is a complete food! Wheatgrass juice contains almost all 102 known elements, which sends a signal to your brain that you are full because you have met all the necessary vitamin/mineral requirements!
    • It is a natural water purifier (that will be another post later)
    • Helps the body to maintain homeostasis

What is wheatgrass?  Wheatgrass is sprouted wheat kernels!

Next post:  Growing your own vs buying it pre-juiced (cost analysis)

Luana ola!