I Wish Someone Would Have Warned Me…

I am feeling incredibly warm and fuzzy (and emotional) after reading a post written by Jen Hatmaker titled, “I Wish Someone Would Have Warned Me About All These Big Feelings.”

Link: http://community.today.com/parentingteam/post/i-wish-someone-wouldve-warned-me-about-these-big-feelings

She puts into words how it feels to be a mom and describes the way we feel about our kids.

The love that we have for our children is a love that we could never imagine in our wildest dreams. It’s a kind of love that almost scares you because it is so BIG and it is the best thing in the world. You can’t ever imagine the thought of loving your child more than you already do and then you wake up the next day, and see that sweet smile, and you realize that you love them even MORE than you did yesterday. How is that possible? The heart is capable of so much love. How can one little human have so much power over a person?

I don’t need to add much more because her article speaks for itself. Please read it!

I love my little Bode with all of my heart and soul.

How to Make State Canvas Art

A lovely friend of mine wanted me to share how I made this little beauty…

minnesota state art

And I’m not about to let her down, so here it goes!

How to Make Canvas State Art:

1. I went to the craft store and bought:

  • A white canvas: choose whatever size works best for your space
  • A piece of heavier duty gold glitter paper
  • Navy blue spray paint
  • Red puffy paint
  • Super glue

2. At home, I sprayed the canvas (outside) covering the surface completely. I let it dry and did a second coat. Again, let dry.

3. Meanwhile, google your state and print out it’s shape. I had to copy and paste mine into a word document and then enlarge it to get the size I wanted. Once printed, carefully cut out the paper state.

4. Lay the cut out state onto the backside of your glitter paper (making sure that the state will be the correct way, glitter side up once cut out; this means the state needs to be backwards when traced on the back of the glitter paper. Think about it). Use a pencil to trace the state. Carefully cut it out.

5. Once canvas is completely dried, carefully super glue the glitter state onto the center of the canvas.

6. Use puffy paint to draw a heart where your home city lies!

7. Hang art where you desire and enjoy!

Imperfections are not a big deal! They give the art more character. :wink:

 

Chocolate Peanut Butter Banana Soft Serve with Almond Breeze

Thank you for all of the love on my last post. It means so much to us. Each day is getting a little bit easier but I still find myself doing things like closing the bathroom door when we leave the house (so he doesn’t sneak in and raid the garbage) and waiting for his howl when the UPS guy comes by. It will take a long time to get used to not having our big guy around. Forever loved and remembered.

moose

 

*************************

On a different note…

I teamed up with Blue Diamond Almond Breeze and whipped up an incredibly delicious (and healthy) dessert or snack!

I’ve mentioned it before and I will mention it again: Banana Soft Serve. This time I added cocoa powder and peanut butter to create Chocolate Peanut Butter Banana Soft Serve!!

chocolate peanut butter banana soft serve

This is the EASIEST dessert ever!

All you need is:

  • frozen bananas (about one medium or large banana per person)
  • A few splashes of Almond Breeze Unsweetened Vanilla Almond Milk
  • 1 scoop of peanut butter (I generally use Smuckers Natural but used Smart Balance this time)
  • 1 heaping spoonful of cocoa powder (add more or less to your liking)
  • Optional: vanilla wafers and sprinkles to top the creamy soft serve

almond breeze banana soft serve

In your blender, blend bananas, almond milk, cocoa powder, and peanut butter until smooth and creamy.

banana soft serve

banana soft serve

Serve it up and eat right away! Feel free to top the creamy soft serve with vanilla wafers, fresh berries, sprinkles, chocolate chips, whipped cream, or whatever you have around!

Smooth and creamy and such a naturally sweet little dessert!

Disclaimer: This post is sponsored by Almond Breeze Almondmilk.

The Best Pup Ever

This past week, we lost our little fur baby way too early at just 7 young years. Moose passed suddenly from a massive tumor that had been growing around his spleen, under his rib cage. He showed no signs of pain or change. Dana and I were away on vacation when he passed and the vet said that was his gift to us; that we didn’t have to see him suffer at all. We got to see him as our happy big bear.

I never allowed myself to think much about what it would be like when he was gone, and now that I’m living it, it is so much harder than I could have even imagined. He was such a huge part of our lives and a loving member of our family. Everything we do reminds us of him. We keep thinking he is going to come running around the corner with one of his toys or greeting us when we get home from grocery shopping. It’s so strange not letting him outside, petting him as he goes by, and having him always by our side.

We miss him so dearly. He was seriously the best dog ever. His biggest fault was that he gave too many kisses. He was such a lover.

We will forever remember and love you our big Moosebear. I hope you are enjoying endless peanut butter, glorious runs, and lots of puppy friends in heaven. Thank you for all of the great memories!

moose and dana moose kisses for moose Moose polar dash 2013 moose moose and melanie moose moose

Chocolate Chip Date Cookies

Happy Friday! I’m keeping it short and naturally sweet…

MAKE THESE NOW!

chocolate chip date cookies chocolate chip date cookies

 

K, that was a little bossy but seriously, you should make these. These cookies are sweetened with dates and dark chocolate chips, are grain free and insanely delicious in my opinion!

Chocolate chip date cookies recipe courtesy of:  https://cheffingit.wordpress.com/2013/07/16/date-sweetened-chocolate-chip-cookies/

This girl knocked it out of the park.

YUM.

xoxo

Spread the Kindness & Giveaway WINNER!

Random acts of kindness day is coming up on February 17th, but you don’t have to wait until then to do something nice! Here are some ideas of how you can spread the kindness around everyday…

  • Smile and say hello to a stranger
  • Pay it forward
  • Bring treats to friends
  • Send flowers to a friend
  • Send a relative a hand-written note

Here are some more ideas! http://greatist.com/discover/february-challenge-kindness-2015  #28daysofkind

WINNER WINNER

Thank you all for playing along in the KIND bar giveaway! Random.org (random number generator) randomly selected….

Barbara Montag! 

Congrats to you, Barbara! Please email me at beautifullynutty@gmail.com with your address by next Friday, February 13th so that we can get your Kind bars shipped out to you!

Happy weekend to you all! Do something KIND today!

My KIND of Giveaway!

So here’s what happened…I wrote up this post on Friday to link up with Katie’s Friday Favorites but neglected to post it. I realize it’s now Monday but you know what? I’m still going to post because there is a serious treat at the end of the post!

My “Monday” Favs:

1. My family. My family is ALWAYS on my favorite list because they are incredible day in and day out.

2. My first postpartum outdoor run. On Thursday, I bundled up and hit the pavement for a 2.25 mile run! I was kind of nervous about it because I hadn’t run for over a year and I was afraid I would be disappointed with how out of shape I am, but I was pleasantly surprised at how well it went! Moose was my motivator through it all. Plus, the frigid wind got me running faster too—it got me home faster! To think that this run was about 30 degrees warmer than this one…

Polar Dash 2013

dana and melanie polar dash 2013

I have some toughening up to do!

3. Supportive moms.

4. Caribou Coffee. K, so really this may be a least favorite to my wallet, but a favorite to my tummy and to-do list. So delicious. I’ve actually informally vowed to myself not to buy any signature ($5) drinks from any coffee shops for the whole month of February.

caribou

5. The KIND Snacks company for sending me these delicious bars! They are the perfect on-the-go snack.

KINDLogo_Pantone_Pos

kind snacks

They sent me:

  • Kind Fruit and Nut bars: whole nut and fruit bars
  • Kind Plus bars: whole nut and fruit bars plus a nutritional boost
  • Kind Nuts and Spices: made with whole nuts flavored with delicious spices
  • Kind Healthy Grain bars: granola bars made with five super grains: Gluten Free Oats, Millet, Quinoa, Amaranth and Buckwheat

Talk about spoiling me, right?!

What I love about these products is that I can pronounce all of the ingredients and they are absolutely delicious and healthy.

And you know what else I love about them?! They are offering all of you 15% off and free shipping on a case of KIND using the code KINDNUTRITION! You have the entire month of February to use it (limit one per customer)!! Don’t miss out on this!

And if that weren’t enough, they are also going to give away a prize pack of 10 BARS to one of my Beautifully Nutty readers!

kind bar

Enter to win by :

1. Like Beautifully Nutty on Facebook

and/or

2. Tweet “I want to win @KINDSnacks from @NuttyMelanie! http://www.beautifullynutty.com/kind-giveaway/”

Do both for two chances to win! Just make sure you comment on this post telling me what you did! 

You have until Thursday, February 5th to enter. On Friday I will randomly select one winner!

Have fun, be KIND!

Disclaimer: I received free products from KIND but all opinions expressed on the products are 100% my own!

Friday Favs: 1 2 3

HAPPY Friday! Today I’m playing along with Katie’s Friday Favorites! The date is 1/23 hence my post title. #nerd

FAVS

1. I’m noticing a trend in my phone photos in that they are 98% all of Bode. Not surprising right? He is my #1 favorite this week and every week. He is now officially in the crib and is a total rockstar! More sleep for mama makes for one happy lady. He is growing so quickly and changing every day. He amazes me.

2. Healthy meals. I am thrilled to have gotten out of my post-partum no-cook slump. This may go hand in hand with the fact that I am getting more sleep?!

kabob

3. The crock pot. The glorious crock pot. We were friends before but now we are BEST friends. I made a pork roast the other day and it couldn’t have been more easy thanks to my buddy.

 

 

pork tenderloin crock pot

4. Bridesmaid dress shopping for this beautiful girl’s wedding! I am insanely excited for this wedding and for the events leading up to it!

 

 

bridesmaid dress shopping betsy melanie

5. Rose ointment from Young Living. Unfortunately I have been dealing with dermatitis on my face and not only is it terribly embarrassing but it’s just annoying. My skin is so darn dry. This rose ointment has helped tremendously with that. And the smell, oh the smell is beautiful. Young Living in general is a Friday Favorite. This company rocks my socks.

 

 

rose ointment young living

 

6. I am limiting my gluten and dairy intake not only for my own health but to experiment with the little man and his reaction to my milk. This cream cheese is surprisingly delicious. It tastes darn near close to normal cream cheese and tastes great on almond crackers!

 

go veggie cream cheese

I hope you all have a super weekend! Relax and enjoy!

xoxo

Currently…

Currently I’m…

…typing with one hand while holding baby in the other.

holding baby

…drinking Wild Harvest jasmine green tea. So good!

wild harvest tea

…cranking the humidifier. My skin is so darn dry! Yuck.

…working on getting little man to sleep in the crib. Why oh why does he hate it so much? Mom’s arms are way better I suppose. :smile:

…still eating clean and have added peanuts and soy back in the mix. Three days without my beloved peanut butter? Such a travesty.

apples with peanut butter

…getting sad about going back to work although reminding myself I am incredibly lucky I am only going back part-time. I’m in total disbelief that this little guy is 11 weeks old already.

…thinking I should fold the laundry, but a shower is going to take priority.

…getting the itch to redecorate the living room!

…trying to decide what to make for dinner on Friday night. Something easy and clean. Any ideas?

Gotta love the randomness right?

Happy hump day!

Clean Eating: Back At It

Helllllooo! How are you all?!

I finally found my way back into the kitchen and I am stoked about it. After 11 weeks of eating whatever the heck I wanted, including loads of chocolate, ice cream, and Christmas goodies, my body was less than thrilled. I was starting to just feel pretty blah. I decided it was time to get back on the clean-eating train.

I’m doing a bit of a “cleanse” where I am removing caffeine, alcohol, dairy, soy, peanuts, processed sugars and gluten for a little while. I plan on sticking to this for at least a few days to give my body a jumpstart, and then I will continue with a much cleaner eating plan versus what I had been eating! I will definitely add soy back in eventually and a little bit of dairy, but I do know that I am somewhat intolerant to cow’s milk so I will continue to moderate my dairy intake.

Here is what I have been eating these last few days!

Egg salad: This time I left out the capers though because I forgot.

egg salad

Raw “brownies”–I can’t keep my hands off of these.

fudgy brownie bites

A lentil salad from the book, “Clean” by Alejandro Jungers. I wrote a bit about the Clean diet back when. It’s full of lentils, veggies, and pineapple. It’s definitely different; not my favorite but not terrible.

Homemade gummy snacks with grape juice, gelatin, and a drop of lemon essential oil. A nice little treat!

grape juice gelatin

Katie’s buffalo chicken quinoa which I made for dinner last night! This was so delicious and so easy to make! I used red quinoa which is why it look different from Katie’s.

buffalo chicken quinoa

I stocked up on veggies and made sure they were cut up and ready to go:

  • bell peppers
  • carrots
  • celery
  • broccoli
  • asparagus
  • spinach
  • romaine lettuce

Mini mini burgers with grass-fed beef from the local co-op.

Cashews to snack on as well as brown rice cakes. I also made sure to buy a bunch of brown rice tortillas.

Almond butter and sunflower seed butter. Not as good as peanut butter but just wanted to give my body a bit of a break from it.

Frozen fruit, frozen spinach and almond milk for smoothies.

We have LOTS of good food around here!

Needless to say our grocery bill was a little high this week but it is SO worth it. I need to get my body back into a clean state. I’m already feeling better after just a short time of eating better. The saying is true, “you are what you eat.”

What are your favorite healthy whole food snacks?