A little sweetness in bitter times

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Happy Sunday y’all! I hope things of been going well for you since my last post. My world things have been a bit challenging to say the least, however in the midst of my trials I’m finding strength in Christ, along with a whole lot of food inspiration! Best of all, I’m learning the true value of human life and seeing what really matters in life is not whether or not we achieve some earthly goal or possession. What matters is how much we love.
Now, since my last post I’ve continued to press on in school despite a lot of the giants I’ve been facing. For anyone who knows what it’s like to deal with PTSD while going to school you know my pain. For those of you don’t, it’s incredibly trying. For someone with PTSD things that are stressful to normal person are 2 to 3 times more stressful for that person. When stress hits it’s almost like chaos completely overwhelms your mind and you can’t think straight. Sometimes I flashback to a Trumatic experience in childhood or life in the middle of the day while I’m doing something and it can cause a panic attack. I’ve had to learn to focus inward and find peace in Christ in order to maintain my sanity. While I’m in the process of healing from it… when it rears its ugly head it’s not fun.

Along with PTSD I also have been battling the same issues with my back and legs. I stand in class, then I take moments of brief sit down time. This is all in order to make sure that I don’t get a back flareup.
Continuously standing in one place for too long has put a lot of pressure on the muscles in my legs, which later has an effect when I try to go for a walk to relieve stress. The stress from classes, life and the sitting that I still have to do from time to time has caused my psoas and iliacus muscles to be overly tight. The help that I need isn’t covered by my insurance, so I do what I can to get by on a day to day basis.

 

Finally, the stress of classes, health, finances, worries about my troubled loved one (and not getting to see her this week for her birthday)… chaos at home and trying to study through it finally just took it’s toll. Last Thursday I was rushed to the ER after I collapsed due to heart pain and chest pressure.
Now, I know that has a believer I’m supposed to trust in the Lord with all my heart and lean not on my own understanding. I know that I need to find my peace in God. These things I try to do. Believe me, I do what I can to find my peace rest in him. What people need to realize is that sometimes no matter how strong someone is founded in Christ, life can become overwhelming. The enemy attacks whome he fears and he has definitely attacked my family and me. The thing is I refused to back down! I’m choosing to believe that God is working as always! Meanwhile, I’m off to another round of testing to find out if there’s a deeper issue. Since this is the second time within a year’s time that I’ve been admitted to the ER with heart problems, it’s time to take a closer look. And all honesty, my guess is that a lot of it has to do with my struggles with eating disorders over the years. Stress can do so much to you, but when you’re under weight it can kill you. While I’m currently just a few pounds from my weight goal given to me by my doctor… years of miss treating my body have taken it’s toll.

My point in saying all of this is to let you know that while people these days seem to focus on the damage that obesity can do to somebody, we also need to take a look at what being too thin can do to somebody. Eating disorders of any kind or not beautiful they. are. ugly., and this is the darkside of it. This doesn’t mean to go hackling at everybody who is super thin because some people are just naturally that way. However if you or someone that you know is struggling with malnourishment, any eating disorder of any kind whether it’s over or under eating… help them or get help for yourself ASAP! I can’t stress that enough! There are so many resources out there so many people who are ready and willing to help. For me, I found a lot of help through my support system which includes my mom and my God mom, my counselor, The ED community that communicates via social media, my church, my friends and so much more. There’s nothing to be ashamed of when you decide to step out and show love to yourself by taking care of you.
Thank In closing I just want to let you all know this whole thing has really help me see how precious and fragile life is. Every moment that I get to snuggle with my cat who seems to know when something’s wrong, that I get to hold my little nephew, hug my mom, go to church, see my friends, go to school, go to work… every breath I breathe is a blessing and it’s an opportunity to love. Whoever you are that’s reading this whether you are battling with an eating disorder or battling with bitterness, unforgiveness, or just need encouragement to press on… take a deep breath right now and thank God for that breath. Look in the mirror and tell yourself how incredibly awesome you are as a creation of God. Get out there and forgive, forget the drama, quit hating on each other and fighting over stupid junk and just love on each other. Embrace your mom, your dad, your friends, your loved ones who surround you. Just love!
As always I tried to leave you guys with a delicious recipe to enjoy until my next post…. so…

Sweet potato À la mode

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*Ingredients*
-1 medium sweet potato
-1 pint of maple vanilla arctic zero ice cream
-1/4 cup slivered dry roasted almonds
*Directions*
Preheat the oven to 350° and bake your sweet potato for 45 minutes to a half hour or until you can poke a knife easily through to the center. Pull it out of the oven, cut down the middle, let the potato cool just a little bit, and scoop some arctic zero right into the center. Top it off with your slivered almonds and enjoy! I had a little bit of the pint left over after putting some in the middle of my potato, however I enjoyed the rest of it just because it’s too good not to indulge!

 

* Disclaimer (thank you Emily for reminding me of this): I am not a health professional, I’m training to be one. I do not have my license, so any advice I gave is merely on experience. In other words your health care provider is the best person to consult for any nutritional advice.

Love and my thoughts on the matter! Plus … chocolate swirl mug cake recipe!!!

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Back again and here it is the beginning of a new semester! I’ll be honest, I went into it feeling absolutely fried! Between physical pain, a serious battle with the cold flu thing that just does not seem to want to go away, financial struggles, family stuff, starting a new business, promotion at work, and the start of a whole new round of classes… It took me just about everything in me to take my first few steps on campus!

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(Photo from favim.com)

It’s almost like that senioritis that everybody talks about hit! Especially being that this is my final semester at the community college level. However, I asked the Lord to help me push through and here I am feeling hopeful yet a little skeptical at as to how to approach my studies… at any rate I thought I would talk about a subject that I haven’t really spent too much time on in this blog. Since Valentine’s Day is right around the corner it seems suitable to me to talk a little bit about love.

Now, if anybody knows my story you know that my life has been full of a lot of heartbreak and I always seem to chase Mr. wrong instead of letting God bring Mr. right, and it seems that people I’m not interested in (not that I’m better than anyone, just not interested) are the ones to show an interest. I’ve also somehow attractive these weird stocker creepy guys or the ones that make the claim that they need someone to take care of them.

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(Photo credit Disney pictures)

Nothing personal gentleman but that’s not a way to view a lady I’m not here to take care of you. Relationships are a partnership. You take care of each other. Then there’s the good guys (cough caugh… a guy I crossed paths with recently 😍😍😍/ not sure if he’s a believer) that I would be interested in, who are faithful, God-fearing, and not to mention good looking that I come across and for one reason or another I’m terrified to even look at the wrong way!
Whhaaatttt????
Now, for a long time I’ve had the sense that I enjoy being alone. The fact of the matter is I really enjoy having my space and not having to worry about if someone’s going to be angry or upset if I don’t call them at a certain time or pick up my phone at a certain time or meet with them on a certain day. For me right now I have a lot of responsibilities as it is with church, school, work, Family, etc… that when I do get a moment alone I like to just isolate myself in my room and either listen to some music or just get some peace and quiet. Any guy that would get involved in my life would have to be believer in Christ, goal oriented and driven, understanding of the life that I lead and the physical pain that I battle off and on, open and willing to share with me his weaknesses and allow me to help if and when is I can, and understand that I’m not here to wipe his butt I’m here to be a partner in life. In other words, I’m not into having a relationship unless there’s a potential for marriage. Put it this way single, saved and celibate.
My message to anyone really bummed about spending Valentine’s Day alone, focus on the people and the things that you do have! I’ve literally spent the past 12 years without a valentine. I honestly only dated one guy in the past 10 years and that relationship only lasted a little over a month. I’ve been celibate for 10 years and I intend to keep it that way until married. For me, Valentine’s Day has been a day to focus on Jesus and what he’s done for me and all the people that I do have in my life: Mom, nephew, God mamma and her new hubby, close friends and church family. Truly that’s were true love does exist. I’m currently working on loving myself and letting my love for God and myself shine through to other people. I’m honestly a work in progress. As for love right now as in having a relationship with a man kind of love? Well, that’s entirely up to the Lord. It’s not that I’m not open it’s simply that I’m not open to anyone that God would not have for me. God is not going to talk me into: 1.) someone who does not love God. 2.) someone who will ask me to abandon the dreams and goals of God is placed in my heart. 3.) someone who is manipulative, or stalking 4.) someone who expects me to take care of them without being willing to do the same for me. 5.) someone that I’m not physically and emotionally attracted to (sorry but both components do you come into play) 6.) someone who expect me to make his life my soul priority. 7.) last but not least, someone who is going to take me away from my family. My family means the world to me and this includes my God family. Plain and simple.
In a nutshell, God doesn’t want me in another bad relationship. He wants me in a relationship that will shine forth in a way that will show a testimony of His redeeming love, goodness and grace
So now you know my stance on love. I hope this helps any of you out there who are dealing with loneliness. Remember that above all the best companion you can have is God and if you can’t stand to spend time with yourself, you really don’t have a good relationship with yourself therefore you are going to have a healthy relationship with others.

Nowwww onto a new recipe that I came up with! I have been a really hooked on mug cakes lately, and the following is a chocolate brownie swirl mug cake that either you can eat alone with some coffee on Valentine’s Day, or you can make two or three and enjoy it with your loved ones or over a candlelight dinner with that special someone! Happy Valentine’s Day!

Valentines Day Chocolate Swirl Mug Cake!!!

*Ingredients*

-2/3 cup mashed baked sweet potato or canned pumpkin
-2 egg whites
-1 tbs vanilla yogurt
– 3 tbs oat flour ( oats ground in a blender)
-1/8 tsp baking soda
– cinnamon to taste
-1 tbs coco powder
-5-6 packets stevia
– 1-2 tbs almond butter

*Directions*
Set almond butter aside to use as icing, then mix dry and wet ingredients separately, leaving The Coco out for last. Then mix the two sets of ingredients together once it’s there early mixed split it into two parts adding the Coco to one part. Greece and nicesize coffee mug with olive oil or cooking spray place one of the sets of ingredients into the cup and swirl the other set in so you’ll get that chocolate and orange swirl place it in the microwave for 3 to 5 minutes until it’s completely turn the cup upside down onto a plate and drizzle the almond butter on top. You can also sprinkle a packet of stevia over the top for added sweetness (hmmmmm)!

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Peanut Butter Revelations and Kettle Corn Treats!

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“Jesus loves me this I know, for the Bible tells me so”… I remember singing this song as a kid, however… I never really knew what God’s love is until more recent years. This week, as I was making my lunch, I got a revelation as to why. You see, I was making an almond butter sandwich to take with me when a childhood memory came to the forefront of my mind. I remembered when there was this peanut butter commercial on tv and the mom would put a heart on the peanut butter, close the sandwich, and when the kid got to school… He’d open the sanwich and there it was! I begged my mom to do the same for me. The thing is… Throughout the day, my lunch bag would get tossed around so much that by the time lunch came around, I’d open my sandwich and find a bunch of peanut butter and jelly mush! I asked my mom why she didn’t make the heart, and she swore up and down that she did… It just got messed up by all the tossing around of the days events. Isn’t that what it’s like with God’s love? He places the imprint of His heart on our lives, but the trials and messes of life’s circumstances seem to blot out any sign of it.! For a better idea of where I’m coming from see the following links:

My Story Begins

Into the Wilderness

My Journey Continues

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Since those past blogs, so much more has happened… Things that have brought me to my knees time and time again, questioning how a God that loved me so much could allow these things to happen. In the midst of the chaos that filled my mind… I heard His still, small voice speaking to me saying… “I love you my child!”  So, while making my sandwich, I decided to put a heart in the almond butter and, in going to eat it, I didn’t check to see if the heart was still there. I simply enjoyed every bite and thanked God for His amazing love towards me! This week… I’ve decided that… Despite the pain I’m dealing with and the uncertanties I face… I refuse to doubt the Love of God for me. So much at stake… My health, School, work, finances… There are days when walking is painful and I’ve honestly feared I might not walk properly again (fear is NOT from God) and days when I feel like any moment I could run another marathon… The mental trauma that the lingering health and family issues have caused… Wow… All I can say it that it’s truly by the grace of God that I’ve made it this far! As classes continue, I just finished my first solo in church choir, Harvest carnival coming up along with practices for the singing Christmas tree… Each step… I’ll continue to take in faith knowing that no matter what tomorrow holds… God holds every moment! So, today… I just want to assure you that no matter what you are facing… No matter what life has brought you through… Know that there is an amazing God who loves you! These trials are temporary… Life in Him is eternal! If you are temoted to doubt God’s love for you… Just ask Him to show you! When I do this… I find his heart shaped fingerprints all over my life through the love of family, friends, brothers and sisters in the Lird and in little things in the scenery around me! He never fails to show His love!
Now, as anyone who has followed my posts for any ammount of time probably knows… I love me some sweet treats! Sssooooo… I leave you all with a recipe for healthy kettle corn!

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Healthy “Kettle Corn”
-Ingredients-
1/3 cup trader joe’s popping corn
Olive oil cooking spray
Trader joe’s sea salt
2-3 stevia packets (or sweetener of your choice)

-Directions-
Place popping corn in air popper and let kernals pop. Place popped corn into a sealable container, pray lightly with cooking spray, close the container and shake. Spray again with cooking spray and close the container and shake it up again. Add sea salt to tase and 2-3 pakets of stevia. Close the lid, shake it up and enjoy! I hope ya’ll have an amazing week!

Better Late Than Never

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Love is patient; love is kind. Love is not jealous; is not proud; is not conceited; does not act foolishly; is not selfish; is not easily provoked to anger; keeps no record of wrongs; takes no pleasure in unrighteousness, but rejoices in the truth; love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, and endures all things. ~I Corinthians 13:4-7

 

Yesterday was Mother’s Day and… well here’s an ode to the woman who planted the Jesus seed deep within me at an early age, who has seen me through every up and down, who has suffered as her children have gone astray at various times, who intercedes more often than not for my siblings and me, who has shown an incredible sacrificial love unlike any other I have ever witnessed, and who had been at the finishing for me if not… just a phone call away to tell her I finished safely… here is to my incredible, irreplaceable mom who’s love for my siblings and me surpasses that mentioned in I Corinthians 13:4-7!

 

*Mother’s Day Berries and Cream French Toast And Turkey Bacon w/ A Side of Citrus Green Tea.

 

GREEN TEA

-two jasmine green tea bags

-1 6oz cup water

-4oz oj

-juice from 1/4 lemon

-1to 2 tbs honey

DIRECTIONS

Bring water to a boil, and let cool for two min (green tea burns in boiling water, letting it cool will keep the tea true to flavor). Steep bags for 3-4 min. Pull bags out (do not squeeze out water this will make it bitter. Over steeping will do the same). Mix in honey and place in fridge for one hour then add orange and lemon juice. Serve over ice with lemon and orange twists to garnish! Serve with toast and bacon!

 

STRAWBERRY TOPPING

-1/4 small, rectangle package of low-fat cream cheese

-3 tbs non fat milk

-1/2 tsp vanilla

-3 tbs clover honey

-1/3 cup strawberries diced

-1/3 cup blueberries

(You may also use another very selection of your choice)

DIRECTIONS

Let cream cheese sit out until room temp. Mix cram cheese, milk, vanilla, and honey until creamy and set in fridge to thicken. Leave berries in a separate bowl.

 

FRENCH TOAST

-1 free range egg

-1/4 cup milk (1% works best)

-splash of vanilla

-cinnamon to taste

-2 pieces of sprouted grain bread

Directions

Heat up skillet and spray w butter flavored cooking spray.Mix eggs, milk, vanilla, and cinnamon together. Dip each piece of bread into Bayer, making sure each side is properly coated. Place on skillet and cook on med heat until golden on each side. Set on a plate w cream cheese typing and berries placed in little side dishes so mom can choose how much to use 🙂

 

BACON

-3 strips of turkey bacon

DIRECTIONS

Cook in skillet until desired consistency and serve with toast!