Coconut Water Smoothies

If you recall a while back I mentioned trying a recommendation from a friend regarding coconut water to aid in charlie horses in one of my legs after a workout. Since posting about this I have gotten a few requests on what type of smoothies I have been preparing since I was not a big fan of the coconut water straight from the bottle. So I thought I would share with you what I have come up with so far and maybe you can get relief with these painful muscles spasms also.

First, let me just say, I did start online researching what everyone else has been adding to their smoothie concoctions. I struggled to find a smoothie that did not add protein powder which I don’t believe in getting in powder form so I ended up starting from scratch. Protein powder has always been, in my option, a fad and I see no reason to not get enough protein in your daily diet rather than by expensive, gritty, powder form in a drink.

So without further ado, here is what I have tested and has been a big hit for me. The first thing I did is made a trip to the grocery store for some frozen fruit. Fresh would also work but it’s winter here so frozen was just more logical. I took it home, thawed it, and blended up my chosen fruits.

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I froze these blended fruits in small cups for single serving smoothies in minutes when needed.

I also purchased coconut water and a blender bottle, found at most discount, drug, or vitamin stores.

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Then it was time to experiment with different blends and here are the favorites so far.

Blueberry Burst:

8-12 oz. coconut water, 6 oz. vanilla yogurt of choice, 1- 4oz. cup of blended blueberries, 2 Tbs. ground flax seed. Shake well and enjoy.

Orange Tropics:

8 oz. coconut water, 4 oz orange juice, 6 oz. vanilla yogurt of choice, 4 oz. blended peaches, and 2Tbs. ground flax seed

Strawberry Fields:  8-12 oz. coconut water, 4oz. blended strawberries, 6 oz. vanilla yogurt of choice, 2 Tbs. ground flax seed

This is all I have come up with so far. Although, I have been thinking about a mixed berry creation, and a mango mixture for the next trip to the grocery store. Honestly, you will have to just experiment with things you enjoy. Think powdered peanut butter, almond milk, cinnamon, nutmeg, mashed banana, chocolate or shredded coconut…..all these would be wonderful additions or ingredients to come up with your own post workout drink.

Also, you may want to read the label on the coconut water you purchase. Many have added sugars that will make them taste better but ultimately won’t be serving the purpose of drinking this rehydrating beverage.

Let me know if you come up with an especially tasty one, I would love to try it myself.

Happy New Year…..First, Let’s Catch Up On The Last Two Weeks

I feel it’s important to catch up on the events of these past two weeks. With me being self employed, I had kids here and there through most of the past few weeks. And now, with the new year upon us, everyone is back to normal schedule, my husband is back to normal schedule, and I am looking forward to getting our routine back.

As most of us have done, we had family and friends to celebrate with but we keep things pretty low key here and that is how I like it. We hosted two gatherings, opened gifts, and had a very nice time chatting and catching up with family. From homemade gifts to fabulous food, we all enjoyed the holidays and the time we spent together.

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In between parties, I lived in my pj’s and just enjoyed the down time I had.

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That is not to say I did not exercise though. I am not going to lie and say it thrills me to death to see all the new people at my gym working on new years resolutions because in all honesty it’s a bit frustrating. However, I know from past years a small few will hang on past a few weeks and it’s just something I have to live with until it thins out a bit. That being said, I do hope all the newbies find health happiness and keep up the good work. It’s a hard step to take and once your past the front door why not keep going. It only gets better from there.

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Let’s see…..in case your wondering my outdoor life has been pretty scarce for quite some time already. We have plenty of snow in my opinion…..ok, maybe in my opinion we have too much snow already. And the worse part is I know there is still so much left to come. So outdoor adventure for me is simply not happening anytime soon.

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During our few weeks off, we did celebrate something other than Christmas and New Years….our son had his 23rd birthday. Yes, he was almost a Christmas baby but I kept my legs crossed for this not to happen…..and thankfully he was born 8 hours later. So every year he gets a few gifts wrapped in birthday paper to make sure his birthday is never forgotten.

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Meals lately have been all over the place. I have always said and still believe that Christmas should be called the “cream cheese holiday” since we consume so much of this food during this holiday. So after all the holiday get togethers were over, I made a big batch of chili and it was a perfect way to get back on a daily meal schedule.

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Plus, I have a new addition in my kitchen and I was dying to give it a try. I have been working on some new recipes to share in the new year while I enjoy cooking with my new dutch oven.

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Speaking of meals…..I am trying something new after my workouts. The past year I have been having issues with charlie horses in my leg after workouts. It’s only one leg and it’s the leg that caused me such issues after surgery on my abdomen….I know, who would have thought…anyhow, someone told me to try coconut water after a workout. Well, I did and this drink is not good! However, I really wanted to see if it would help so then someone told me to try making it into a smoothie which I did and now it tastes a whole lot better. Since I do not have a fancy blender and don’t wish to buy one, I simply purchased a Blender Bottle and have been experimenting with different mixtures. Happily, I can report, I have seen great improvement in my leg pains after workouts and have been enjoying the smoothies I have been coming up with.

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That pretty much sums up the past few weeks. I am looking forward to January and hope it brings some fun along with a bit of adventure in the new year.

July Goal #3- A Mom’s Day Off-Door County, WI

Although I don’t consider myself a full time mom anymore to our now grown 19 year old son, I am somewhat of a substitute mom to all my daycare children. That being said, whether I am a mom to my own child or doing my job, all mom’s needs a day off once in awhile. And that is exactly what I did on Monday, took a day off and had some fun with some friends.

I started my day with a little me time at the gym, alone and very early. My favorite time to workout is mornings and I rarely get this opportunity so I took full advantage of it.

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After that is was home to get ready for our day of fun in Door County, WI. I have visited this area more times than I can remember and almost always spend most of the time hiking trails or on the water doing something water related. Today however, was all about food, shopping, and wine tasting. No need for hiking boots or paddles but I was ok with that.

Our first stop was a new coffee shop in Sturgeon Bay, WI called the Glas Coffee House. I had already had my fill of morning coffee so I went with a blueberry smoothie which was perfect after my awesome morning workout.

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After this it was time to go deep into the Door County experience and shop. All three of us are foodies so we were literally like kids in a candy store. We tasted dips, salsa, olive oils, balsamic vinegars, BBQ sauces, cookies, cherries, and of course WINE!!!!!

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We did sneak away and explore a few of the other shops with some authentic Door County art.

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Then somewhere along the path we came across a very special holiday shop that is decorated year round with Christmas decor.

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And I’ll be honest, walking into this shop in the middle of July was against all my morals but I did it. (You will all understand why if you remember how much I dread snow, cold, and winter.) I will also admit, the Christmas music that was playing sent a shiver down my spine but the decor was very, very beautiful.

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We did take a short break and have a real meal in between all the culinary delights we tasted and ate at the Chef’s Hat in Ephraim, WI.

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My meal of choice was the gorgonzola roast beef sandwich with potato salad. It’s like a party in your mouth, it’s so good.

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Door County has so much to offer that I know we could never see it all in one day. However, we saw quite a bit of it.

Eventually, I hope to get the girls to visit and venture out into my world a bit and either do some hiking or explore by water but until that happens a glance at the calm waters of Door County was not far from my sight.

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After all, it was a day to relax, enjoy being child free, enjoy being with friends and not have to worry about going back and picking up anyone in this area either:)

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To finish off our day, we had the pleasure of stopping in at the cabin of one of the women I spent the day with and sharing a dinner of all our Door County treats. WARNING: VERY UNHEALTHY MEAL….but so worth it!

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Yes, believe it or not, this was what we ate for dinner. Cookies, chocolate covered cherries, port wine cheese, crackers and wine. It was awesome.

Have you ever been to Door County, WI?

What was your favorite activity you did while there?

 

 

Week Recap

I can’t believe it’s Friday already. My week started out pretty slow but shifted into high gear mid week. We got so much accomplished this week on the “to do” list that I would say we are ready to move into play mode during our weekends.

Monday we were finally able to finish landscaping our yard. This is the first year we will not have a garden. Sad I know, but I just could not find the time. At the end of the gardening season last fall we took down the fencing and planted grass. Now we just needed to add some landscaping pavers and transplant some hostas. I did the hostas with some help from our son during nap time one day. Then, when my hubby arrived home from work he laid the pavers and ta da, another job done. Of course, as you can see, he had a little helper.

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Lately, for some reason I have been struggling to come up with dinner ideas and stick to them during the week days, but this week I did a great job. We always plan a week in advance what dinner will be and depending on life, jobs, weather, etc. this can change very quickly. However, this week went according to planned. Our meals consisted of:

Monday: veggie stir fry with spring rolls

Tuesday: chicken pot pie and side salad

Wednesday: no boil lasagna and garlic bread

Thursday: sloppy joe casserole and sauteed zucchini

Friday: chicken quesadillas and with all the fixings

And I have to share something with you all. I have read so many smoothie recipes and have seen pictures of hundreds of different blends. I have never been a lover of fruit but thought maybe in smoothie form I would be able to consume a little more. So one morning I blended up some fruit (apple, pineapple, banana, greek yogurt, and a little almond milk) and the outcome was pretty tasty.

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I can’t say I would make this very often or be able to consume this as a meal. However, I think this would be a great way to help others get there intake of fruit, especially if your like me and don’t really care for many fruits. I guess I am just more of a veggie person.

I have also come up with a quick breakfast idea that both my husband and I have been loving lately. This is by no means a new thing, but it is something that is new to us. Breakfast at our house has to be quick because we get up very early for my husband to make his 45 minute drive to work every day. I took some clean jars, granola, greek yogurt and what ever berry/fruit mixture you prefer. (We change ours up) And just started layering in a jar.

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I will make a few of these up on Sunday and they are good for a quick breakfast all week long. Amazingly, the granola even stays crunchy.

Which brings us to the weekend. With no definite set plans I am kind of left hanging. Yes, I have the normal errands to run, I think my husband is going fishing with my brother, our son has to work part of the weekend and then it’s Mother’s Day on Sunday. Which means I should have plans, but I don’t yet. Sometimes those weekend where you just let happen what happens are fun. Hopefully this one will be.

Have a great weekend everyone.

And to all you mom’s out there, Happy Mother’s Day 🙂