30 Day Writing Challenge! Day 3

30 Day Writing Challenge! Day 3

My inspiration.

I never know how to answer this question. I feel like most people have this long list of amazing or truly great people or moments in time, but I honestly don’t have one single moment, person, or thing that inspires me. It’s more like a collective hodgepodge of small insignificant moments that struck fire in my soul, once upon a time. One of the biggest things is people watching. It sounds stupid, and kind of creepy, but watching people’s routines, or their actions, when they think they’re being lost in the crowd, is what I find interesting. It’s also the sweet, kind and terrible things people do when they think they don’t have to be held accountable for their actions. It makes the most confident, intelligent, or untouchable person seem human and relatable. That inspires me to never judge a person upon first glance.

Now for the obvious; books. I love how they connect people, either in love or conflict.  No matter what your life situation is, where you came from or what you’re going through, stories are there. They’re there to help, to inspire, and to help you escape from your life for a few hundred pages. I’ve seen how they change people, or stories live in their hearts for so long and how they bleed into their everyday life.  I can’t count the times a book has saved me from myself when times were dark. Every time I think about those moments where I felt so alone, or unconnected, I hunger to create something that brings someone else as much comfort as those books brought me

-Shayna

30 Day Writing Challenge! Day 1

30 Day Writing Challenge! Day 1

 

  1. Coffee. This is kind of obvious for anyone who knows me even in the slightest
  2. Thunder. I love a good summer storm. The deluge of rain, claps of thunder and that fresh smell of earth just makes me feel at home.
  3. Early mornings. Ok, so I’ve never been a huge morning person but it seems the older I get the more I appreciate those brief moments when the sun breaks past the horizon and the whole world seems so quiet and at peace.
  4. When plans are canceled. This one sounds really weird but I guess I guess I can chalk it up to my social anxiety and being a slight introvert. Seriously dealing with people can be truly exhausting,
  5.  Self-checkouts. Maybe it’s the social anxiety or the fact I was a cashier for two years, but I hate going through a cashiers line. I either get particular about how I place my items down so I don’t irritate the cashier, or I constantly get mad at other customers for being rude or pushy to the poor person behind the counter.
  6. Cows. I honestly don’t know what it is but I get way too excited over cows. I just can’t explain it.
  7. Old abandoned things and buildings. I could spend hours going through old homes, watching videos of people exploring old buildings.
  8. Corgi butts. Seriously, have you seen a corgi walk? Go look it up.
  9. Finding a book I’ve been wanting, in perfect condition, at a thrift store for dirt cheap.
  10. Pens that write so smooth or ones that make that scratching sound on paper.

30 Day Writing Challenge!

30 Day Writing Challenge!

Let me start off by saying, yes, I’m well aware that it’s a tad odd to be starting a month-long challenge when we’re already almost a week into August. I have a tiny human, who takes up a good chunk of my time and is currently asleep on my lap. On that note, I’m going to try very hard to get through this challenge without skipping too many days.

See you soon!

-Shayna

Happy National Breastfeeding Week!

Happy National Breastfeeding Week!

This month marks five months breastfeeding my son, but I’ve got at least seven more months left in my journey. I’ve always wanted to breastfeed, ever since I started thinking about when I would have children.

When I was pregnant I read everything about breastfeeding that I could get my hands on, but the talk of low supply, mastitis, thrush and clogged ducts scared me, and I began to worry if I would be able to nurse. As some of you have read in my birth story part one and two, most of what I had planned regarding birthing my child had gone out the window. Luckily the hospital I chose to have my c-section at was very supportive about breastfeeding and I constantly had a nurse or lactation consultant in my room helping me and answering my many questions.

Honestly, the first three months of breast feeding are the hardest. You’re exhausted from just having a tiny person, and said tiny person is wanting constant attention around the clock, and on top of that you’re worried about your milk coming in, if it’s enough, if they’re hungry, or if they’re getting milk at all. There’s a reason why they call those first three months the fourth trimester.

I was constantly stressing and panicking about whether my son was eating enough since he was crying nonstop the first week; I called my midwife before my son was two weeks old and she said that he was gassy, so that put my mind at ease. And don’t get me started about the hunger! I swear I spent most nights with one arm pressing my baby to my chest and the other shoveling food into my mouth (oatmeal or pudding, normally). I was determined to exclusively breastfeed for a year, but when those late nights and cluster feedings started to take its toll I didn’t know if I could make it to the next week let alone nine more months. I kept repeating to myself, “I just have to get through this growth spurt, this week, and things will get easier.” Which is true, sort of; It either gets easier or you get stronger, whichever happens first. My son was around two and a half months when I started to get into a real rhythm. I didn’t need to be sitting in a certain position or need a ton of pillows or to even have on a nursing shirt.

But, as it always tends to go, as soon as I feel like I’ve got a grasp on things I get thrown a curve ball. For instance, not even two days after starting to feel like I’ve got this whole nursing thing down, he starts to teeth. I mean, really? Two months old and teething? Then once I started to get the hang of that, he got thrush!  It’s been a crazy ride, but I honestly wouldn’t change a thing. When I’m having a rough day and am nursing my son for what feels like the hundredth time that day, he unlatches, looks up and me with the biggest smile. Unfortunately most times that’s followed by a loud pooping noise or some spit up, but that’s beside the point.

 

Something I’ve never understood is how breastfeeding, something that’s been around as long as women have given birth, is still a taboo subject. With the way people talk and how they treat mom’s who feed their babies in public (be it covered or uncovered), I get the worst anxiety whenever my son gets fussy and I know he’s hungry when we’re out in public. I try to pump but it’s difficult considering when I sit down to do it, my son notices and freaks out because he thinks it’s stealing his milk. I’m trying to build up my confidence so I can withstand the glares and comments, but I’m not there yet. I have the utmost respect for those women that can confidently nurse in public, those strong mom’s that don’t need your opinions and couldn’t care less about your judgmental stares.

So whether you exclusively breastfeed, pump or have down their own science of formula and breast milk, you go mom!

 

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My milky baby and I

 

My Top Three Favorite Sweet Potato Recipes

My Top Three Favorite Sweet Potato Recipes

I don’t know if it’s just me, but I feel like sweet potatoes are becoming more and more popular. I hope/ dream that they will steal the spotlight from those “fad foods” kale and avocados. I don’t care too much for kale, just a slight distaste for it, but avocados on the other hand… Maybe it’s the fact that they’re the ONE FOOD I’M ALLERGIC TO, or perhaps it’s because it tastes like fresh-cut grass, but I have a weird hatred for it. Cool it with the avocados, internet. My husband, along, with a good majority of the world apparently, has some weird obsession with avocados, but I just can’t bring myself to jump on the band wagon.

Now that that’s out of the way, let me tell start off by saying I used to actually hate sweet potatoes. I would try to help out at holiday dinners by skinnin’ the sweet potatoes but it would leave me with a weird itchy feeling all over, so I’m assuming I had a slight allergy to it. I was also really confused about who in their right mind puts mini marshmallows on POTATOES. But as I’ve gotten older, my taste buds have changed and now at Thanksgiving I have a huge plate of sweet potatoes and tiny portions of everything else.

I know there’s a lot of debate between whether these are sweet potatoes or yams, so I’m just going to clarify: Sweet potatoes have lighter skin, with tapered ends, and a light yellow to deep orange flesh, where as yams are dark and sometimes with rough skin, though the flesh is whiter and dry. I feel like this article from the Huffingtonpost explains it pretty well.

Now on to the recipes! For most of these, I follow instructions closely, but a few I modified for my own taste/ things I had available.

 

 

Sweet Potato Quiche

I’ll be honest, I’ve never made a quiche before. I’ve always wanted to, but I’ve never had the right recipe or a nice dish to serve it in. One day I was cleaning out my cupboard and I found a dish someone had given me that looked worthy of my first quiche, so I took to the internet and found this simple, yet tasty treat.

quiche

https://www.sweetashoney.co/healthy-sweet-potato-crust-spinach-quiche/

Obviously, I didn’t get mine super crispy, but it was still super good. I added a lot more cheese than the recipe called for because I have a serious cheese problem. My husbands a picky eater so he ate maybe one tiny sliver (he has trust issues with what I cook ever since I made a cauliflower crust pizza), so I ended up eating it for lunch for a few days. It was lightly flavorful but still filled me up enough that I didn’t need to snack throughout the day.

Ground Turkey Sweet Potato Skillet

This has is my favorite! Seriously, you only dirty one pan, it takes minimal effort and it’s very filling. Also, you can make it all while pausing to deal with a baby that’s got their walker stuck in a corner.

turkey skillet

http://www.lifeloveliz.com/2017/05/15/ground-turkey-sweet-potato-skillet/#_a5y_p=6338506

I followed the recipe for the most part, but I changed up a few things because I either don’t normally have those things on hand or I’m the only one eating it. It’s so filling! I always add a bunch of mozzarella cheese to the top, sometimes I put sour cream on top but it honestly doesn’t need it

Sweet Potato Peanut Butter “Nice” Cream

Ok, so I was a little skeptical about this one. I’ve heard a lot about “nice” cream but have never had the opportunity or chance to try it. I mean ice cream that’s healthy? Yes, please!

nice cream

http://thevegan8.com/2015/09/10/5-ingredient-vegan-peanut-butter-sweet-potato-ice-cream/

I didn’t make the sauce, but honestly, it was still AMAZING. Seriously, it’s so good. The peanut butter is the main flavor, but it’s nice and creamy with just the right amount of sweetness without being too over powering. This honestly might be my new favorite dessert.

 

 

I hope you enjoyed this little post; thank you for reading!

-Shayna

 

Smoothie Hack!

Smoothie Hack!

The weather has finally started to warm up here in the PNW so I thought I’d do a post on a fun little smoothie hack (Obviously, smoothies are my life). I’m probably not the first to think of this, but it’s still pretty cool!

So first of all, I bought a big thing of bananas, kiwis, and strawberries. I sliced them all up, laid them out on a  cookie sheet and stuck them in the freezer for a few hours (I left them in there for about two hours). They weren’t super frozen, but just enough that they weren’t smooshy. Next, I divided all my fruit into muffin tins!

IMG_0811I just layered everything in the tins (I love chia seeds so I added a half a tablespoon to each tin), topping off with my almond milk last before throwing them in the freezer overnight! You could use any liquid you want, I just prefer almond milk in my smoothies.

IMG_0808

In the morning they were nice and solid.

IMG_0812I used a spoon to pop them out, setting a few aside to make a smoothie and put the rest in a big freezer bag to use for another day.

To use for your smoothie, just drop two disks into your blender with about a half a cup of your preferred liquid and blend! This makes about 12oz.

 

I hope you enjoyed this post!

-Shayna