22 December 2016

Roasted Brussels Sprouts, Pomegranate Seeds + Lemon Olive Oil Dressing, SCD + Paleo

Roasted root vegetables are always an easy side dish to prepare and can easily be made to follow the SCD and Paleo lifestyle. Every once in awhile we like to switch up this classic dish and get creative. My family loves Brussels sprouts, especially this time of year when they are in season. This hearty vegetable is high in many beneficial nutrients, including vitamin C and vitamin K, vitamin B6, fiber, potassium, phosphorus and omega-3 fatty acids. When you combine the leafy greens with vibrant red pomegranate seeds you have a splendid holiday dish!

When it comes to roasting veggies, my secret ingredient, in most of my cooking actually, is PALEO POWDER.
It's the perfect blend of spices that can be used as an all-purpose seasoning. The salt, chili powder, garlic powder, black pepper, onion powder, white pepper, cumin, cayenne pepper blend is just a touch spicy and adds the perfect flavor for all palettes, even the kiddos.

Roasted Brussels sprouts with Pomegranate Seeds
Yield: 8 servings

1.5 pounds Brussels sprouts, halved and stems trimmed
1/4 cup pomegranate seeds
3 Tbs extra virgin olive oil
1/2 tsp sea salt, more if desired
1/2 tsp cracked fresh black pepper
1 tsp Paleo Powder
2 tsp honey, drizzled over the sprouts

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
2. Grease a baking sheet with coconut oil or line with aluminum foil.
3. In a large bowl, toss brussels sprouts with olive oil and spices.
4. Place the Brussels sprouts onto the baking sheet and drizzle with honey.
5. Bake until lightly browned and you can pierce with a fork, usually about 20 minutes.
6. Transfer to a serving dish and cool.

Lemon Olive Oil Dressing

1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
2 Tbs lemon juice
1 tsp apple cider vinegar
2 tsp dijon mustard
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp fresh black pepper

1. Place all ingredients into a tall glass jar and mix with a whisk or immersion blender until combined and creamy.
2. Toss the Brussel sprouts in the dressing and add in pomegranate seeds.
3. Serve and enjoy!

*Please note while pomegranate seeds are SCD legal, seeds are an advanced food. Pomegranate concentrate is illegal.
**This post contains affiliate links.

15 December 2016

DIY Thieves Essential Oil

DIY Essential Oil
Unfortunately, the holiday season is usually accompanied by the cold and flu season, at least in our household. Since my oldest has an autoimmune disease and is on an immunosuppressant, I take all measures to prevent illness, but sometimes the inevitable is not preventable. So here we are, in the thick of the sickness, with Christmas right around the corner. I'm hoping tomorrow brings a bit of health so I can send the kiddos back to school. I could really use a day alone to prepare for next week, wrap some presents, finish up the errands and squeeze a much-needed hot yoga class in. Fingers crossed!

Over on Instagram (you can follow me @Kickncrohns) a few people suggested I try thieves essential oil. We've been using essential oils for awhile, and as you can tell by the photo above, I'm not married to one particular brand. I did a little research on thieves and turns out there is a bit of history behind it. Thieves oil (also known as Four Thieves Oil) is an ancient essential oils recipe that was used during the Bubonic plague, which haunted Europe's Late Middle Ages (1340–1400). This plague, also know as Black Death, hit in 1347 and quickly ran rampant, killing a third of the human population by 1348. Robbers who sought to avoid catching the bubonic plague while stealing from the ill used Four Thieves Oil in an attempt to ward off the disease.

It’s a mixture of clove, lemon, cinnamon bark, eucalyptus and rosemary essential oils; all of which contain potent antiviral, antibiotic, anti-fungal and immune building properties.

Cinnamon bark was unavailable at our local EarthFare so I picked up cinnamon leaf. Both contain the active compound cinnamaldehyde, which is equally found in both the leaf and the bark oils. According to a 2007 study conducted by Spain's Universidad de Murcia, cinnamon-leaf and cinnamon-bark oil, along with clove oil, contained antimicrobial properties. Further research has proved that the cinnamon leaf oil contains anti-inflammatory properties.

DIY Thieves Oil
20 drops clove essential oil
16 drops lemon essential oil
10 drops cinnamon bark essential oil
8 drops eucalyptus essential oil
5 drops rosemary essential oil

1 2 ounce glass jar with lid
1 glass eye dropper

1. Combine the essential oils in a clean, disinfected 2 ounce glass jar using the eye dropper.
2. Shake well.
3. Use as suggested below.

How To Use Thieves Essential Oil:

* We use most of our oils in a diffuser. I have one in my son's room, one in a bathroom and one in the kitchen. Add 5-8 drops of the oil with water and defuse.

* You can also add a couple drops to a base oil (coconut oil, jojoba oil, olive oil) and rub on the stomach in a clockwise circular motion and on the bottom of the feet at bedtime.

* Make a chest rub. Combine 8-10 drops of thieves oil with 1/4 cup raw coconut butter, coconut oil or Shea butter. When making a chest rub I like to add a couple extra drops of eucalyptus oil. Mix together well and store in an airtight container for up to 10 days.

For more on the history of Thieves Oil, read this article. We're history buffs over here and love submerging ourselves in the knowledge of the past.

“Study the past if you would define the future.”
― Confucius

**This post contains affiliate links and I will be compensated if you make a purchase after clicking on my links.

02 December 2016

Into the Wild + Little Green Radicals

PicMonkey Collage-2
For those of you who know me, you know that eating organic and non-GMO is fairly high on my list of priorities. But the idea of a healthy lifestyle goes far beyond what we eat and drink. Our health is impacted by the world around us; the air we breath, the dirt we touch, the clothes we wear and the products we use.

"The more clearly we can focus our attention on the wonders and realities of the universe about us, the less taste we shall have for destruction."
Rachel Carson

While it's important that I am cautious about our foods and the farming industry, I also strive to live a vibrant healthy lifestyle where I can focus on sustainability and my awareness of the carbon footprint I leave behind. Our earth is in trouble and we need to take action. If only we could listen to Rachel Carson and appreciate the wonders of our world then maybe we would make a better effort to preserve it. Those very wonders are all around us; the mountains out west, the rolling hills of Ohio, the silent beaches of the coast, the desolate dessert. But look closer, look into the wild, and you will see beauty all around you. You don't need to travel far and wide to experience these luminous wonders and realities of the universe. Simplify. Turn to your backyard and watch the winter breeze dance across the overgrown grass. Open your bedroom window and close your eyes, listen to the sound of the trees as the boughs gently waltz back and forth.

"Our life is frittered away by detail...Simplify, simplify, simplify! Simplicity of life and elevation of purpose."
Henry Thoreau

In an effort to simplify, I am focusing on quality versus quantity. When Little Green Radicals reached out to me about working together on a post I knew it was a good fit. In fact, their tag line says it all, "Organic fashion for free range kids." Shortly after their launch, Little Green Radicals was one of the first brands in the Uk to get Fairtrade certification for cotton.

Their organic farmers, based in India, get a guaranteed price for their cotton and they don’t use nasty pesticides. The employees in the factories get fair wages, maternity leave and several other benefits that, unfortunately, most factory workers overseas do not get.

Over the years this ethical, organic and Fairtrade company has blossomed into an award winning beautiful brand. Little Green Radicals combines fashion with comfort and delivers a quality line ranging from newborn to eight years of age. And make sure to check out their organic skincare line as well; I have my eye on the organic sleep balm! It sounds so dreamy and perfect for our cold winter nights.

Click the links below to shop and view their new line.

Little Green Radicals // website, Instagram, Twitter, Facebook

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