Eat More Fish

This week, I have been focusing on decluttering my pantry. Who knew that I had so many packages of rice noodles? I have been inspired to use up my pantry ingredients, along with what I find in the fridge and freezer, in an effort not only to declutter, but also to save some money on my ever increasing grocery bill. All I needed to pick up for this delicious Weeknight Red Curry from Bon Appetit was a pound of firm white fish. I chose cod. I will definitely be adding this to my monthly menu!

Tonight, I will be making another Asian inspired fish dish that we have enjoyed before: Spicy Miso Ramen with Chili Roasted Salmon from feasting at home. You guessed it. I have salmon in the freezer and ramen in the cupboard.

There are many health benefits to including more fish in your diet:

  • It is high in important nutrients
  • It may lower your risk for heart attacks and strokes.
  • It may help with depression.
  • It’s a good dietary source of vitamin D.
  • It’s delicious, as you will soon discover when you try the recipes I have shared.

Enjoy!

Meal Planning

In last week’s post, I mentioned meal planning as a way to create a little more time for self-care, so today, I want to share how I go about planning my week (along with a few recipes).

I usually do my meal planning on Friday: creating a shopping list. I shop on Saturday and do meal preparation on Sunday, so I will be ready for the busy week ahead.

Key for me is thinking about what I can cook once, and then use at least twice. So on Sunday, I might make Crispy Roast Chicken with Vegetables. Leftover chicken could be used later in the week to make yummy Chicken Pot Pie Turnovers: great served with a simple salad. If you have a large family to feed, you could roast two chickens on Sunday to ensure that there are leftovers. I also like to make a huge batch of Roasted Vegetables. You don’t really need a recipe for this (although the one included is delicious). Any vegetables of your choice, tossed in a little olive oil and seasoned with salt and pepper, will work. There are SO many ways to use roasted vegetables: topping for pizza (a fast meal with a pre-made crust, sauce and cheese), soup (pureed in broth with your choice of seasonings), lasagna, on a salad…. Often I’ll also make a lot of brown rice. If I still have some roasted chicken left, I can make Classy Chicken. Cold rice is perfect for Easy Better-Than-Takeout Shrimp Fried Rice. It’s also great for rice and bean burritos (and you can throw in some of those roasted vegetables!)

I love working with clients to help them plan and prepare meals. If this is something you’re interested in, let me know.

 

The Importance of Self-Care

What is self-care?

It is anything that we purposely do in order to take care of our mental, emotional, and physical health. It is something that replenishes us… something we enjoy doing. It isn’t something we do just once. It is consistent use of many tiny self-care activities.

It is really easy to put ourselves at the bottom of our priority lists. We either feel selfish for wanting to take time for self-care, or we believe that there just aren’t enough minutes in the day. But it is important for us to take time to do the things we enjoy. It allows us to relax, refocus and recharge, so we can live our best lives and be our best for others.

While we can’t add hours to the day, we can re-evaluate our priorities and practice time management. For example, I used to visit the grocery store daily. Now I plan meals a few days in advance, shop once, and do some meal preparation on the weekend so that things come together quickly. This has not only saved me time, but also money.

Decide how you want to spend your “Me” time. Remember, it should be something you enjoy doing, not feel you should do. So while getting up early to fit in exercise is something that I love because it puts me in a great mood and gives me energy for the rest of my day, that might not be your choice.

Once you have created a self-care list for yourself, commit to spending at least 15 minutes a day on you. YOU are worth it!

Take Care Of Your Self

What is self-care?

It is anything that we purposely do in order to take care of our mental, emotional, and physical health. It is something that replenishes us… something we enjoy doing. It isn’t something we do just once. It is consistent use of many tiny self-care activities.

It is really easy to put ourselves at the bottom of our priority lists. We either feel selfish for wanting to take time for self-care, or we believe that there just aren’t enough minutes in the day. But it is important for us to take time to do the things we enjoy. It allows us to relax, refocus and recharge, so we can live our best lives and be our best for others.

While we can’t add hours to the day, we can re-evaluate our priorities and practice time management. For example, I used to visit the grocery store daily. Now I plan meals a few days in advance, shop once, and do some meal preparation on the weekend so that things come together quickly. This has not only saved me time, but also money.

Decide how you want to spend your “Me” time. Remember, it should be something you enjoy doing, not feel you should do. So while getting up early to fit in exercise is something that I love because it puts me in a great mood and gives me energy for the rest of my day, that might not be your choice.

Once you have created a self-care list for yourself, commit to spending at least 15 minutes a day on you. YOU are worth it!

The Importance of Social Connection

I was inspired to write today’s post by a recent phone call, late in the day, from my next door neighbour, inquiring if I could spare a cup of flour. Moments later, her daughter showed up, measuring cup in hand, and we made the exchange. I was both surprised and delighted when her daughter again arrived at my door, within the hour, with three, still warm, banana chocolate chip muffins. They were delicious!

This got me thinking about how fortunate I am to have good neighbours. We take care of each other: feeding pets, collecting mail, putting out the trash, watering gardens, dropping off, checking in….

Social connection is really important to our emotional and mental well being: including lowering our levels of anxiety and depression and strengthening our immune system. While we may make time to exercise, eat well, and get enough sleep, we sometimes forget the connection piece.

Connection doesn’t have to involve your neighbours. Perhaps it is a volunteer group you are part of, a running group, or an online community. As long as you feel supported, you are reaping the benefits. Look for opportunities, that work for you, to create those connections.

I will finish with a recipe for Mini Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins. It’s not my neighbour’s, but one I use all the time from The Kitchen Magpie. I have used both walnut oil and avocado oil with good results, and it makes 24 muffins if you want to share….