Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Dining Out: What are you really paying for?

I've asked myself this question many times over the past year when we we get the wonderful opportunity to have "date night" together. We've been finding ourselves more and more drawn to small, organic restaurants. There's something about going out and knowing you're being pampered and NOURISHED at the same time. We are so lucky here in the Northwest to have a nice selection of natural, sustainable, organic restaurants. We've been to several over the past year and really enjoyed the experience. We've also found ourselves being choosier where we take the whole family out for meals (we usually eat at home) when we go out - opting to eat deli or prepared foods at PCC or Whole Foods... or a quick dinner at Chipotle's Mexican Grill (LOVE that place!).

Last weekend for date night, we chose a fabulous restaurant called Bennett's Bistro on Mercer Island. They filter their own water (in a huge, 3-chamber filtration process), serve vegetables and fruits from local farms, RAW cheeses from local dairies, Sunshine Dairy (the brand I buy) products and sustainably farmed meats and seafoods. The meal was absolutely fantastic.

We ordered the salmon poki appetizer (raw salmon on top of avocado with a poki sauce), which was to die for! Then I ordered their "Tip of the Iceberg" salad with a blue cheese-lemon vinagrette, Oregonzola raw cheese, toasted hazelnuts and tomatoes - I substituted the iceberg lettuce for romaine. Horus ordered their turkey burger with Beecher's (local cheese company) mac-n-cheese and chipotle cilantro coleslaw. Mmmmmmmmmm!!!!!

I'm so proud of how natural and organic my own kitchen has become... It's already expensive to SHOP for organic and natural grocery items... I guess part of me just can't get over thinking - why pay extra money for food that I wouldn't serve my family at home? At least when we're home, I know (for about 95% of our food) WHERE it came from, EXACTLY what's in it and HOW it was raised/farmed.

How do you feel about this? What does a fancy dinner really mean to you? Does it mean just simply spending a lot of money? Does it mean getting the absolutely best, most expensive food available (like a mouth-watering, well-marbled, fifty-dollar, corn-fed steak or the most beautiful, bright-orange fillet of salmon), regardless of where it came from and how it was "farmed?" I ask myself this question constantly when we go out to eat - anywhere. ...and if it's not the greatest restaurant, I try to pick the most natural item on the menu.

Do you think about this when you eat out AT ALL or am I just a weird-o? :)

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Crying Over Asparagus

Yes, you heard it right. CRYING over asparagus. :) My five and a half year old CRIED tonight because I ate the last stalk of asparagus. Horus roasted it in the toaster oven with butter and sea salt for dinner tonight. It was sooooooo yummy.

As I was shoving the LAST STALK into my mouth, my 5.5 year old FREAKED OUT. I sat there with an un-chewed piece of asparagus crammed in my mouth wondering what to do. I decided it was way too gross to regurgitate it, so I chewed and swallowed it.

SHE STARTED CRYING!!!!!!!!!!! I'm totally serious! I just about fell on the floor, I felt so bad! At the same time, I was just swelling with pride that she liked the asparagus that much. I had always thought she ate it because I told her it was yummy and healthy. I didn't realize she actually LIKED IT that much! :)

Anyway, lesson learned. BUY two bunches of asparagus next time. :) That was the only way I could stop her quivering lip was to promise I'd buy an extra bunch tomorrow.

I know I've been MIA lately, but things have just been crazy here. Thank you for the wonderful emails you've sent! I've greatly appreciated them. I'll be posting a new blog later this week - stay tuned because I WANT YOUR THOUGHTS! :)

Thursday, March 13, 2008

You got to love this country

I'd like to post a true story written by a very close friend of mine. I don't even really need to comment on it as it speaks for itself. Just wanted to share. -Horus

"So in the midst of all these lies the liberals are forcing us to believe, I thought I’d share some truth about the inequity of our system.

As you know, my stepdaughter just had a baby last September, out of wedlock and totally unprepared. It’s not a proud moment for my family, especially with my values but unfortunately my stepdaughter always chose to rebel against me and my wife, and chose the path contrary to our advice and guidance. In my opinion her biological father is to blame for the resistance he had towards my positive influence on his daughter. It’s long story so I won’t bore you with details but suffice it to say her teen years were terrible and put a strain on my relationship with my wife. Having said all that I do care for her and always wished her the best. However, I feel it necessary for her to be accountable for her actions and learn from her mistakes. My wife and I do help her a bit financially but we limit it to helping her support the baby, but of course her and her boyfriend are learning what it takes to be grownups, or so I hope they are.

Their views towards politics and society are what you would expect from people in their situation and this is what really pisses me off. Of course, because they made this decision to have a baby without any preparation and follow the “traditional” path to starting a family, they can’t financially support the child. This isn’t a problem because our Government makes it way too easy for people not to worry about such things. All doctors bill for both the baby and my stepdaughter from the moment of conception are paid in full by our state. She doesn’t even have a co-pay. I'd also like to mention that she doesn’t have to wait at some dingy clinic to see a doctor, she sees the same family doctor we have had for years. All prescriptions for her and the baby are paid for as well. The baby’s formula, diapers and other essentials are paid in full by the state.

This isn’t as a result of receiving a welfare check but rather is a program called WIC funded by the Washington taxpayers. I am sure other states have similar programs. What really gets my goat is that we just did her taxes last night (she isn’t even responsible enough to do them herself) and it appears that she will be getting a refund of about $3,700. She only worked part time last year and only paid a total of $900 in combined federal taxes. This is outrageous.

My main problem with this is that she will never appreciate this and understand the inequity of the system. Like many people who have made poor decisions in their lives, they see no problem with others having to pick up the bill for them. With Obama and Clinton running around filling their heads with ideas that Republicans are evil and out to get them, they of course become Democrats. There is a sense in these people that the Government is here to take care of everything and that no one should be held accountable for their actions. They fuel the fire of class envy by claiming such lies that only the rich get tax breaks and that the poor get nothing from their Government. How can I possibly make her see the truth and accept responsibility for her actions.

This is the true circumspection of Hope not the Audacity of Hope."

Sunday, March 2, 2008

Honey Cilantro Salad Dressing

Honey Cilantro Dressing
  • 1/2 cup extra virgin, organic olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 1 large tablespoon of raw honey
  • 1 clove garlic
  • dash of salt
  • 1 teaspoon to 1 tablespoon pepper (your preference)
  • 1 small handful organic cilantro

Blend all ingredients (I have the same blender she uses in the video - Magic Bullet) - LOVE IT.

This salad dressing was absolutely fantastic!!! I didn't have any persimmons or cheese so I only added chopped bosc pears with a spring salad mix. Absolutely fantastic and both of my little girls devoured theirs!

I use a local raw honey called Guilmette's Busy Bees from Bellingham, WA.

I just love Lucy Lock from She is a patient of Dr. Mercola's and does all of his recipe videos. I thinks she's humorous to watch and I love her accent. :) Enjoy!

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

No More Organic Milk at Starbucks

So disappointed to hear that Starbucks is discontinuing their organic milk supply. I originally heard about this over at the United States of Motherhood. I thought for sure it wouldn't happen for another month or so, but no... As we ordered our drinks at a nearby Starbucks, I was promptly told they don't carry it at all anymore. To which I replied very politely, "Awh, I'm so sorry to hear that. This will probably be our last purchase here then." The barista totally understood as she buys organic milk for her kids. She was equally upset over the decision.


Not that we go to Starbucks THAT often, but it was nice to swing by on occasion and the girls love getting organic steamed milks that I sweeten with stevia. No more!

Starbucks chose to do this because they're proud to have switched all regular milk to rBGH-free milk, they phased out the organic milk..............

...... you know because rBGH is the ONLY REASON to drink organic milk.

*rolling eyes*

Nevermind the fact that conventional animals are confined to repulsive living quarters. Nevermind that rBGH is only ONE hormone! What about all the rest? Nevermind that those poor animals are fed pesticide-laden, GM corn and soy and then pumped full of antibiotics to prevent the infections their diet causes. This stuff MATTERS. This stuff is what makes organic milk worth the extra money. Conventional milk IS NOT HEALTHY. Healthy milks comes from healthy cows. It's as simple as that.

I can't expect Starbucks to go all-organic, I know that. :) rBGH-free milk is a great step for a big company like Starbucks to make, but they should have kept organic milk as a CHOICE.

Seattle Times Article

Saturday, January 19, 2008

Monica Lewinsky's X-Boyfriend's Wife for President


Ugh, I definitely needed a good laugh this morning. :) LOVE THIS! Thanks to my wonderful uncle for emailing it to me.

I'm not much of a bumper sticker person (except for my itty bitty republican elephant sticker), but boy do I want to display this somewhere! LOL

Thursday, January 17, 2008


So as I was poking around at PCC the other day, I stumbled upon a new soda pop. I never buy soda pop, for many reasons. Most companies think pure cane sugar is a good sweetener in a natural soda, but it's still terrible for you. It still rots your teeth and the artificial carbonation (phosphoric acid) is horrible for your teeth, gums and digestion.

This wonderful new product I found is called Zevia and it's made by a small company here in Seattle, WA. They make three flavors and all three are absolutely fantastic. Their cola flavor tastes like REAL cola, not diet cola. The orange flavor and lemon/lime twist flavor are both caffeine-free and also just as delicious. I'm sipping the lemon/lime right now. :)

Zevia Flavors

And here's why I like this product:

  1. No artificial sweeteners or preservatives. They use stevia and erythritol (sugar alcohol found in fruits & veggies) to sweeten their drinks.

  2. No phosphoric acid! This is what most cola companies use to give their drinks that carbonated zing, but it's horrible for your body. It softens your bones and teeth enamel as well as it neutralizes stomach acid so you don't digest the nutrients in food properly.

  3. Real citric acid! According to the Zevia website, their citric acid comes from oranges, grapefruits, pineapples, lemons and limes. Most citric acid in the food industry is not extracted from citrus fruit, but fermented by mold from scrap molasses, waste starch hydrolysates and phosphoric acid. NASTY!

  4. Triple filtered water! Most cola companies use regular tap water. I don't know what kind of filteration they use, but any filtration is better than none. My preference would be reverse osmosis. :)

  5. Natural colors - the company worked very hard to find natural colors for their products. The orange soda is BRIGHT ORANGE, but it uses all natural annatto, from the achiote tree. Their cola flavor is colored with natural caramel color and their lemon/lime twist flavor is clear.

I just stopped by Whole Foods on my way home today and they don't carry this product. So I talked to the employee working that department and she was THRILLED. She immediately went to her computer and pulled up the Zevia website, brought up their wholesalers list and ordered the product! Yay! So if you live near a Whole Foods, stop in and request the product. Otherwise, you can find it at most PCC stores and small natural thrift stores. The Zevia website has a partial list of where it's available.


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